When Obi-Wan smiled, Qui-Gon recoiled. The once-loved expression was hollow. His teeth were blackened, and his eyes dead instead of bright.

Pulling his hand away, Qui-Gon backed away quickly.

"Master?" The thing that looked like his Padawan laughed, and followed him. "Why do you run from your creation?"

Qui-Gon shook his head. "You're not my Padawan. He is not my creation."

The mock-Obi-Wan laughed again. "Oh, but he is. I am. You have molded every inch of what I have become. Only not quite so literally as you might have wished."

"No." Qui-Gon felt at his waist for his lightsaber, only to find it missing. "No." He repeated himself, wanting to wipe the eerie smile from the other man's face.

'Obi-Wan' tilted his head to the side, Qui-Gon felt like a bug being examined by a child. "Even now, you deny me?" A rage seemed to grow in the empty green eyes. His voice rose, echoing off the stone walls. "How can you deny me?"

"I never denied my Padawan." Qui-Gon managed to reply calmly, facing the furious man.

"Yet you deny him even now!" The voice boomed in the small space, dust rattling from the ceiling. His voice lowered, and he muttered, "You always were a pompous son of a hutt."

Qui-Gon smiled. "You are not my Obi-Wan. You have no power over me."

The other smiled evilly. "So you would like to think. Tell me Master. Is it the past, or the future that you look to?"

"I live in the moment. As should any Jedi."

He cackled. "Wrong answer."

Lightning suddenly filled the cave, bouncing off of the walls and ceiling and surrounding the man dressed all in black and Qui-Gon found himself frozen in place. The demonic laughter didn't falter, but rather grew louder.

Blue bolts of energy lapped at Qui-Gon's feet as he watched the younger man seem to age before his eyes. Horror filled the Jedi Master's eyes as the man grew into a steepled old man - who's eyes burned with a black fire.

"Learn from the past, Master," he sneered. With a flick of his wrist, the lighting touched Qui-Gon's legs and arms, leaping and twisting upward in dazzling arcs.

Determined not to scream, Qui-Gon called on the Force to push the pain away while he frantically searched for an escape. His attention was pulled back to the now ancient figure before him when he spoke again.

"You fail to learn from your past. Die from the future."

Uncontrolled laughter echoed as the electric arcs lept from every direction to land on the half-dazed Master. Denial still screamed in Qui-Gon's mind, but he had no time to speak even had his voice still worked. In its place, a hollow cry was torn from his throat as blue sparks pulled him in every direction.

Within seconds, the once-proud Jedi was reduced to a simmering pile of cloth and charred flesh on the cold floor. As the foul stench spread to fill the air, the lighting storm ended. With it, the mysterious cave disappeared, replaced with the quarters that were Qui-Gon's in the temple.

The man, grown from padawan to old man in moments changed once more. Kicking out with a booted foot, the Senator laughed as a fine ash rose into the air.

Sparing a glance at the young man who lay prone on the kitchen floor, he smiled coldly. "Welcome to the future of your race, young one."

The End

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