He felt Qui-Gon's approach minutes before the large Jedi reached his quarters. Obi-Wan opened the door before Qui-Gon had a chance to press the ringer. Qui-Gon gave him a slight smile. Obi-Wan returned the gesture. Silently, the two made their way to the lifts. There were no words spoken between them as they rode the lift, nor when they entered the Jedi Council chamber. Obi-Wan was formally informed of his reinstatement with the Jedi and he politely thanked the Masters as he bowed obsequiously. He listened attentively to the stipulations of his probationary period and replied with the utmost sincerity that he would follow the Code obediently. He similarly thanked and bowed to Qui-Gon when Qui-Gon requested to have Obi-Wan reaffirmed as his Padawan learner. Yoda consented to the request on behalf of the entire Council with a slight smile and a somewhat triumphant glint in his bulging eyes. It was only when they left the confines of the chamber that Qui-Gon finally studied Obi-Wan with frank concern while pausing on balcony overlooking the expansive gallery within the Temple.

"What are your thoughts?"

Obi-Wan leaned on the edge of the balcony, disinterestedly watching the Temple activities below. He looked at Qui-Gon, seriousness gathering in his eyes. "It's still inside of me, isn't it?"

Qui-Gon's forehead creased as he frowned. He joined Obi-Wan at the balcony, taking stock of the overwhelming feeling of serenity and purpose within the Temple. "In a way, it is within all of us. Do you believe you will succumb to it?"

Obi-Wan bit his bottom lip. "It scares me," he admitted. "I could have killed you, Qui-Gon. A part of me wanted to. What if I lose control like that again?"

But you didn't lose control," Qui-Gon answered. "I don't believe you would have killed me. There is goodness in you that would have stopped you and will always stop you from committing such acts. I have faith in you, Obi-Wan." He rested his hand on Obi-Wan's shoulder. "And in any event, it is my obligation to stop you in such follies." He tugged harshly on Obi-Wan's Padawan braid for emphasis. "By Jedi law."

Obi-Wan smiled warmly at his master, then rubbed his scalp where the braid was hitched.

"There is goodness out there,' Qui-Gon said, motioning to the windows where Coruscant spread out before them. "Sometimes it is difficult to find. But it is there. There is death, there is violence and there is agony. But there is also beauty, humour and compassion. Nothing stays constant. The universe is in a state of eternal flux. Goodness does not always last, but neither does evil."

Qui-Gon turned to Obi-Wan. Obi-Wan leaned himself off of the balcony and stood before his Master with his arms folded in his robe, listening attentively. "You have experienced evil beyond description, Obi-Wan. This may not be the last time either. But you have also discovered friendship and affection, and you were willing to sacrifice yourself out of a love that extended far beyond yourself. I cannot think of a greater good."

Obi-Wan was about to thank his Master for his words when a wheeled droid scurried up to them and nudged a datapad into Qui-Gon's hands. Qui-Gon took the small device and the droid wheeled away quickly, chirping as it went. Qui-Gon studied the square screen for a moment before sighing and placing the datapad into a pocket in his robe.

"So much for a vacation," he mumbled. Obi-Wan arched an eyebrow at him. Qui-Gon gave him a grimace. "Negotiations between the government and one of the shipping cartels on Abregado-rae have broken down. They have requested our presence." Qui-Gon glanced at Obi-Wan who nodded gravely. The solemn countenance of his young apprentice made Qui-Gon grin.

"Lets go to work."

The End

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