Of Words, Training, and Lingering Cages
A Collar is Removed, the Dark is Explored, and a reminder that the Physical is not all that binds us is given.
Maul was still not quite sure what was happening outside of the fact that he wanted it. Maul wanted for Plo to teach him, he wanted for…he wanted for all
of them to teach him. That part of him that hungered found the idea of
having so many around him satisfying in a way that he did not
understand, he just knew it felt…it felt like the removal of a lack.
It felt like another tool in a box.
Maul wanted more tools, he wanted to understand, to know who he was and
what was happening, he wanted so much, and they were offering… Maul
wondered a bit how he was meant to earn this. He wondered what the catch
would be, but Maul would find that out. He had already promised to read
the book and to not hurt while he was doing so…
no longer wished to hurt, so that part was easy, the book was a bit more
difficult, but Maul could ask questions, he thought. They were meant to
teach him, were they not? They were meant to help him understand, and
he had to assume that this book…
There is good in this Galaxy…
Maul was not sure what that meant, though he wondered…he wondered if it
was something that Meltch had been trying to give him. He wondered…
Maul did not even know where to begin with any of this, did not know
how to ask the questions that were tickling at the back of his mind.
Maul did not know how to ask about other forms of touch, about why it
burned and yet did not hurt him.
Maul took a
breath and then slowly looked to Tiq then, taking in the Rodian that
was smiling at him, the warmth in those large eyes. There had been so
Maul did not know how to thank that.
“You were there,” Maul said finally, watching him quietly, “the entire
time. I remember your voice throughout all of it…”
was,” Tiq agreed and that smile broadened, his eyes crinkling with it.
“It’s my job, Maul. It’s something I wished to do, not something that
you owe me for.”
Maul found his brows knitting
slightly, taking in the Jedi before him that was asking him for nothing
and mumbling quietly, “Compassion. Weakness.”
beamed, “Perhaps,” he agreed, “or maybe it’s a gift. Maybe it’s
something that you needed and something I chose to provide. It’s
something that I’ve trained for years to be able to do, and it is
something that I wanted to give.”
Maul took this in,
thinking. Maul was not a stranger to training of course, he himself did
it all the time, and he supposed that this then must be a skill,
something learned and honed through constant work, but that still begged
the question… “Why do you train for this? Why is it something you
“To help others,” Tiq answered, “because I
cannot bear to see someone hurting when I know that I can help. There is
the satisfaction of knowing that I have helped, of seeing someone come
out of… Maul, I will not lie to you, you were one of my more difficult
patients, and for you to be here… I am pleased for you. I am so happy
that I could help you.”
Maul took that in and found
that this was…perhaps a bit harder to understand. Maul was no stranger
to the satisfaction that came from hard work, and also the knowledge
that he had accomplished something, but for it to be another person that
mainly benefited, that… That was strange. But Maul thought it might be a
Jedi sensibility. This then was easier to understand.
Though perhaps, this was the kind of thing Anakin had meant by Good.
“What do you do now?” Maul asked finally.
Tiq smiled at him, “I am…a Mind Healer, Lord Maul,” Tiq answered, “I
help people understand themselves, understand what has happened to them
and begin to heal.”
Maul found a brow slowly rising, taking this in for a moment, “I see.”
“I am also the Mind Healer that was specifically assigned to you.”