Title: The Good Travellers.
T (for the moment)
Blurb: Padmé and Obi-Wan are sent back in time from the end of Episode III, right in the middle of the Blockade Crisis when they first met. Together they combine forces to help the Force and the Republic to change the future for the better.
Notes: I started this in 2013, when I finished writing Intimacy Without Intricacy. I love time travel stories, and there are not enough out there that resolve the way in the way I like, so I decided to write my own. I was taken by the thought of what would happen if Obi-Wan and Padmé were sent back to the beginning of their acquaintance, with the knowledge and memory of all that was to pass between them, and if that closeness could change the future concerning her and Anakin, as well as Anakin's own destiny. At the moment I'm working on three epics, and giving myself a fortnight rotation, where I focus on each for two weeks, one at a time, which was working quite well before Christmas 2013, but has been rather hit and miss since the start of the new year. I'm currently writing Part 6, which deals with the start of the years between the first two episodes, PTM and AOTC. Enjoy.


A good traveller is one who does not know where he is going to,
and a perfect traveller does not know where he came from.

Lin Yutang 1895-1976
Chinese Writer & Philosopher

Part 1.

It was his reflexes which saved him. Ones acquired through years of fighting a war no Jedi wanted, yet they were committed to by the powers of one Sith bent on slowly destroying everything they had held dear. Although the Order protested against fighting in the Clone Wars, amongst themselves as well as to the Republic and the Separatists, their denials were perhaps repeated too much to sound convincing to those who were not a part of the Order, who did not understand the deeper philosophy that lay within the Force, as their lightsaber skills improved, along with their passion and belief in the purity of the ideals they were fighting for. He may not like what the Clone Wars had done to the Republic he served through his obligation to the Force, but he was a better Jedi because of it.

Which was why when he saw the black booted heel coming towards him, not only was he able to dodge the hit, he could also return with one of his own, a lightsaber strike which sliced at the incoming missile, causing his opponent to reel backwards in order to return the block with his own weapon. Red lightsaber blade clashed against blue, the difference in colours escaping his notice for the moment, the collision altering the pitch of the humming laser crystals.

Obi-Wan glanced up as he flicked his weapon into another defensive block, only then catching sight of his opponent, and the recognition caused him to blink in shock.


The Zabrak twisted the saber staff, moving the other end to strike his second opponent, who was frowning at Obi-Wan as his Force sense stretched out for a bond that had been cruelly severed thirteen years ago.

Qui-Gon Jinn.

What in the blazes was going on?

Obi-Wan had no time to answer himself, nor to even begin to come to terms with what was happening to him. Maul was a powerful warrior and one he needed to focus on solely if he wanted to take advantage of this Force given opportunity and defeat him.


Ignoring his Master's questing for the remains of the severed link which used to lie between them, he brought up his blade to block Maul's strike, in a motion and with a style few padawans should possess, unless they were masters in disguise. The move caused the Sith to switch his focus and he kicked out with his back leg at the now weaker enemy.

Qui-Gon fell to one of the lower walkways, the same one his apprentice desperately grabbed in another time. With a grunt he got to his feet, silently murmuring to himself that he was getting too old for this and he had no business taking on another padawan who would need more years of sparring and training before he reached the potential of his current apprentice.

Speaking of Obi-Wan..... He looked up to locate him, still puzzling over the suddenly severed bond between them in time to see him knock their enemy to another catwalk before leaping off to follow. With another grunt, Qui-Gon summoned the Force to his aid and leapt to join them.

When he reached the walkway, their opponent was backing into the service corridor which led to the melting pit that acted as the disposal unit for any residue of energy the starship complex did not require, Obi-Wan following. His apprentice was countering the attack with a confidence no longer tempered by the fear which Qui-Gon had sensed in him before something abruptly severed their link, in fact Obi-Wan appeared to be completely in control of the duel.

Capable. It was a word assigned to every padawan who was ready for the trials, uttered by masters reluctant to lose their apprentices who were sons or daughters to them in all but blood and name. Only now did Qui-Gon realise that when coming to describe Obi-Wan, such a word was woefully inadequate. It had been an understatement before, as most younglings needed a few years of knighthood under their belts to realise their full potential. Yet as he continued to observe the fight, Qui-Gon discovered that not only had Obi-Wan appeared to realise his potential, he had also mastered it.

His pause cost him, a fact he came to acknowledge as the automated laser cycle began, raising the cascade shielding along that service corridor. Even with a Force enhanced run, he wasn't fast enough. He reached the threshold of the passage in time to see his apprentice halt before the final shield, their enemy pacing the perimeter of the melting pit.

Qui-Gon focused on gathering his strength, knowing he would need all the Force could grant him if he was to rejoin Obi-Wan. His padawan was glancing about the their location, as if he were searching for something, though what Qui-Gon had no idea. Abruptly the cascade cycled again, surprising the Sith and the Jedi Master, but not the Padawan who closed the distance between himself and the Sith to smoothly resume the duel.

How did Obi-Wan know where the controls were, Qui-Gon wondered, let alone the access codes which controlled the cascade cycle. He ran towards the melting pit, managing to reach the spot where his apprentice had stood moments before, but once more he was too slow to help, not that it looked like Obi-Wan needed any assistance. His apprentice was countering each strike from their opponent with the skill of a seasoned master. Mentally Qui-Gon ticked off each move his padawan displayed; assigning them to the advanced stages of certain lightsaber fighting forms that he had never taught his apprentice, and was fairly positive he recalled no one else doing so. Adding to every defensive strike was a style that all masters acquired after a time, as they customised the katas they were taught to their strengths and limitations. Wordlessly he wondered what had happened to his padawan.

Obi-Wan deftly flicked the tip of his blade towards his opponent, splitting the Sith's saber staff in half. Catching the rotating hilt with his free hand, he crossed the blue and red blades either side of their enemy's neck.

"Surrender," he uttered to the growling Sith. "Or I shall be forced to kill you."

Qui-Gon could see that the Zabrak was trying to calculate if he could catch Obi-Wan unawares with what was left of his saber. Yet even as he began to contemplate such an action, Obi-Wan used the Force to twist the weapon out of his hand, shutting off the blade, lifting the hilt over his head down into the melting pit behind him.

"I won't ask again," Obi-Wan said. "Surrender."

The Sith glanced at the blades, then nodded reluctantly.

Behind them the cascade shields deactivated; though whether it was through the automated system or by the command of his apprentice, Qui-Gon did not know.

"Master," Obi-Wan uttered, "would you cuff him please?"

Qui-Gon stepped forward as his apprentice adjusted the blades he could stand behind the Sith without being injured. Their prisoner did nothing to resist him as he captured the hands in the Force restraints he carried. Only when they were fastened did his padawan turn off the lightsabers, hooking them about his hips. Then Obi-Wan turned, his hand reaching out to the melting pit, where to Qui-Gon's surprise, he called for the other half of the saber staff. As he shepherded the Sith back the way they had come, Qui-Gon caught sight of where the hilt had landed, on a small node which was attached to the tunnel shaft.

Slowly they walked back through the service corridor then along the catwalks to the hanger bay, where the pilots had just returned from their space conflict. Judging from the celebrations going on, they had been successful in destroying the ship which had controlled the droid army and the Trade Federation's source of strength in keeping command of their invasion of the planet. Ric Ollie, the pilot who had flown them to Coruscant and back, was shaking the hand of every colleague, evidently trying to find out who had fired the shot which gave them victory, as Qui-Gon could not see anyone being held aloft, proclaiming their glory to the skies.

Then Anakin popped his head nervously out of the cockpit he had been confined to and turned his gaze towards the waiting Jedi, his eyes widening in fear as he encountered the gaze of the restrained monster who had fought Qui-Gon on Tatooine. "Am I in trouble?"

To the boy's surprise it was Obi-Wan who stepped forward to lift him out of the cockpit. Setting him down on the floor, the padawan kneeled before the boy, regarding him with a open warmth that he had never treated him with before, astonishing both the boy and his Master yet again. "No, Anakin, you did a brave thing," he said. "But we must be careful of revealing that it was you. Someone could use these abilities you possess against you, manipulate you into committing a wrong you can never undo."

"Wouldn't I be able to tell if they were doing that?" Anakin asked him.

"No," Obi-Wan replied, his cultured tones echoing back to Qui-Gon, unconsciously conveying a warning which carried all the power of the Force. "There are some beings who are so devious that they can conceal themselves even from the those who use the Force. The brightest and the best of us can be deceived by someone appearing to have the ability to grant us all we desire. Nothing comes without a price. Remember that, Ani."

The entrance doors to the hanger bay opened then, causing Obi-Wan to rise, before everyone bowed as the Queen and her entourage entered.

She rushed into the room, her gaze widening as she encountered the three warriors, causing the Jedi Master and Padawan to frown for completely different reasons. "We have Nute Gunray in custody," she eventually said, but she looked like she wanted to say something else. Her eyes blinked in shock as she caught sight of the Sith once more.

"The destruction of the control ship has re-established communications," she added, "the Jedi Council await your report, Master Ken.... Jinn."

Qui-Gon's frown deepened while Obi-Wan's transformed into an expression of mild shock before rapidly veiling further emotions behind a mask of Jedi serenity. The former stepped forward to inquire about the holding cells for the Sith. Once he had established their location, he led the Sith away to his confinement in silence.

When he had returned to the Queen, she was in her throne room once more, with her Council and his apprentice, discussing what should be done with the Viceroy, whom she seemed reluctant to turn over to the Galactic Courts.

"The trials will take too long and accomplish little," she said as the master entered. "There has to be another solution."

"Perhaps there is, your highness," Obi-Wan said. "With the capture of the Sith, the Jedi Council have grounds to put this affair under their jurisdiction. We still possess a certain amount of investigative freedom and our justice system is much swifter than the courts."

"Thank you, Padawan Kenobi," Queen Amidala replied. "I shall present such a report to the newly elected Supreme Chancellor once the Jedi Council have agreed."

"With your permission, your highness, I shall speak with the Council now and ensure that they come here to take matters in hand personally," Qui-Gon declared.

"My communications are at your disposal, Master Jinn," Queen Amidala replied. "I also offer you and your apprentice accommodation at the palace while we wait for the Council's and the Chancellor's arrival."

Qui-Gon bowed. "We are grateful for your hospitality, your highness."

It was not until he was in those rooms that Obi-Wan had a moment to pause and reflect over what the Force had done. With Qui-Gon briefing the Council over what had happened, and Anakin talking to the pilots, Obi-Wan could let his thoughts run free over why the Force had given him this chance. It had to be the Force who had sent him here, for there was no other explanation which made as much sense. But why had the Force chosen him of all Jedi to send back, and to this moment in time, he did not know. He was not arrogant enough to believe that his actions alone were responsible for the destruction of the Republic and the Order. Nor that he could be able to change everything to prevent such a catastrophic future from coming to pass. But he was a servant of the Force and he would go where the ancient energy bid him to do so and fix what he could.

Already there were some things that he could not fix, such as the election of a new Chancellor. It seemed odd that the Force would choose to send him back in the middle of the duel with Maul rather than before they ever left Naboo. With Palpatine still in charge of the Senate he was limited in what he could do.

The door to the suite which he occupied with Qui-Gon and Anakin opened and he looked up to find Padmé standing there.

"Obi-Wan?" she uttered, her voice half choked of a sorrow desperate to be quenched.

Within a moment he was up from the bed and she was in his arms. Together they sank to the floor and cried out their grief.

"But how?" she asked when she had the breath to speak.

"The Force," he answered, causing her to smile.

"What you did, saving Master Jinn," Padmé paused, raising her eyes to his. "Do you really think we can change the future?" she asked.

"We have to try," Obi-Wan replied. "I don't either of us could bear to live through those times again."

She nodded, before adding nervously, "and what about me and Anakin?"

Obi-Wan regarded her carefully. "That is up to you and he, Padmé. I'll argue for the reforms within the Order, they are long overdue and Qui-Gon will support me, as this is one thing we can agree on. But I cannot promise that the Order will agree." He paused, letting her come to terms with such information. "I will keep it a secret, if there is no other way."

Padmé squeezed the hands which clasped her own in gratitude. She knew that she was putting him in a difficult position, but she also knew that she could not dissuade him for it was his way. "Do we tell anyone else?"

"I don't know," Obi-Wan answered. "Some, I feel, we will have to tell. Qui-Gon's suspicious, he has good reason what with our bond suddenly severed in the middle of the fight with Maul, and because I displayed skills only a master has. Master Yoda will probably guess, no one else is more attuned to the Force than he. Master Windu too, with his skill in descrying the shatter points of the Force. If there is anyone whose advice you value, whom you trust, you may confide in them, as I imagine we'll both be in need of confidants during this. Above all, we must make sure Palpatine never finds out, else his actions will become difficult to predict."

Padmé sighed as she remembered her recent actions in the Senate. "How will we be able to change things while he's still in power?"

"There has to be a way," Obi-Wan said, "otherwise what was the point of the Force doing this to us?"

She nodded and together they rose from the floor to sit on the bed. "It feels strange being this young again. I feel even older now than I did before."

"I know," Obi-Wan agreed. "Its going to be awhile before I'm used to being called a padawan again."

Padmé smiled alittle at that. "Obi-Wan, you just used aggressive negotiations to arrest a Sith and your legendary diplomatic talents to argue that thanks to his existence, the Trade Federation blockade should be subject to the Order's justice system as oppose to that of the Senate and Court's. I don't think you'll stay a padawan for long."

Obi-Wan made a move to disagree with her, but he sensed the approach of another. "Qui-Gon is about to disturb us. Do you want him know about you now as well as myself?"

"I think that would be for the best," Padmé replied.

Obi-Wan nodded and motioned with a hand towards the door, sliding it aside to reveal Qui-Gon, who frowned at the sight of the Queen of Naboo and his padawan sitting so close together on the bed, holding hands.

"Would you excuse us please, your highness," he began respectfully, "I need to speak with my padawan."

"Whatever you have to ask can be said in front of Padmé, Master," Obi-Wan responded, flummoxing him.

Seeing that neither of them were willing to move, Qui-Gon continued. "Very well, I ask then what has happened to you? In the space of one move I felt something change inside you, before you were closed off to me forever, by shields so strong which I have only sensed in masters of the Force."

Obi-Wan glanced at Padmé, then relinquished hold of her hands as faced his master. "It is something we are only just coming to terms with ourselves," he replied. "We believe that the Force sent us from a terrible future to this moment in our past."

Now Qui-Gon found the need to seek a place to sit. He took a chair opposite them, his eyes never leaving those of his Padawan's for a moment. "The future," he murmured, not in search of confirmation, at least not from Obi-Wan or Padmé. More out of a need to confirm it for himself, to collect his thoughts so he could come to terms with what Obi-Wan had said. So much conveyed in so few words. Even in his Padawan's expression, there was a realm of information, the eyes clouded over by grief, aged before their time by a turmoil he could not protect him from. He felt an overwhelming curiosity to learn what they knew, yet also caution tempered that eagerness, for telling him might alter some aspect of the future which they did not need to change. But why tell him in the first place, he wondered, before realising that Obi-Wan had to because of what he had done in the melting pit, not to mention the fact that their training bond had been severed before its time, and cruelly so. Which led him to another, more disturbing possibility.

"Something happened to me," he uttered, catching sight of a fleeting glimmer of confirmation in his Padawan's eyes as he did so.

"Do not ask me anything else," Obi-Wan pleaded. "I need some time to come terms with everything, before I start to consider what to tell who."

Qui-Gon nodded, he could accept that and not just because Obi-Wan was his padawan. It was the voice he had just used, the tone of a Council Master. Yes, he did obey them on occasion, and it was different coming from the man whom you had trained for thirteen years, though he had always suspected that one day Obi-Wan might become a member of such illustrious ranks, but the motion to follow such a request was instinctive.

Padmé stood. "I believe their are some duties I should be getting on with," she uttered, sensing that they needed some time alone.

Obi-Wan leapt up from the bed. "I'll walk you to the door."

Taking her hands, he stayed her departure for a moment, strangely reluctant to let her go. "I don't think I'm myself just now. Can we talk later?"

"Of course," Padmé smiled. "I'm not myself either. We'll get through this together."

Obi-Wan nodded and opened the door for her. He watched her disappear down the hall, then turned round to encounter Qui-Gon's look. Valiantly he forced himself not to react. "Its not what you think, Master."

Qui-Gon raised a sceptical expression in response, showing quite clearly that he thought otherwise, but held his tongue, giving his apprentice noticeable relief.

"I need to meditate," Obi-Wan murmured.

"Do you need some help?" Qui-Gon asked.

Sensing his master wished to be of some use, Obi-Wan nodded and together they sat down on the bed and sank into the embrace of the Force.

To be continued.....