|Judgment Day, Star Wars, Obi-Wan and Anakin, Rated G
||[Jan. 19th, 2007|02:06 pm]
Fanfiction; It's like a drug-addiction
Title: Judgment Day
Fandom: Star Wars
Characters: Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, Owen Lars
Rating: Rated G
Word Count: about 2180
Notes: Takes place at some time before A New Hope.
Disclaimers: I do not own Star Wars or any of its characters.
Summary: Obi-Wan is very ill and hallucinating.
As the twin suns of Tatooine began their way down, strange lights and shadows seemed to dance across the small house that Obi-Wan Kenobi had made his home, turning the usually drab interior a riot of colors. He watched it with feverish eyes. He was very ill, he realized. He’d taken what little medicine he had but it wasn’t enough. The fever ravaged his body and mind.
As the room slowly darkened and the colors faded, he became aware that a man stood in the shadows, watching Obi-Wan, his face and body covered. Obi-Wan eyed him warily. No one else had been here in years except for Owen Lars and a stray brave Jawa. Not until now. That the man was undoubtedly a figment of Obi-Wan’s imagination did not dispel his uneasiness. A day of judgment then. A ghost from his past come to make him atone for his sins.
How he wished things could have been different. Even after all these years, Obi-Wan felt the sorrow and regret that still made a hard knot of pain in his chest. And longing. A longing for something to look at besides the endless, baking sand. A longing for companionship. A longing for familiar faces…one in particular.
His eyes looked again to the dark figure standing quietly. He cleared his throat roughly, “I suppose you’ve come to see me off. It must seem a happy day to you.” He tried to grin at the man but knew it was more like a grimace that stretched his cracked lips.
“Not necessarily.” The voice was unexpected, familiar and at the same time not.
“But I’m not ready yet, you know, my Padawan…,” his voice stumbled over the word after so many years of not saying it aloud. He laid his head back and closed his eyes. “Not yet…”
* * * * * *
He was back again today. Dressed in dark clothes and a loose, course-textured cloak with a short hood drawn over his head but leaving his face uncovered. There were traces of shadows under his blue eyes. His face looked older than Obi-Wan remembered, fine lines at the corners of his eyes.
You’re not really here, are you?” Obi-Wan asked, sadness coloring his weakened voice.
“Do you really want me to be here?” He looked back over his shoulder, a curious smile pulling at his mouth.
“I missed you,” Obi-Wan whispered.
“Did you?” He was looking at the things on the shelf to the right of the doorway. Little things that Obi-Wan had collected through the years. A pretty piece of rock. A fossil of some unknown animal from long ago. He touched them gently, carefully, his fingers lightly caressing.
Obi-Wan moved restlessly on the narrow, hard bed. His body throbbed with pain and he felt as though he were burning from the inside out. “I think I’m dying, Ani. I’ve been sick a long time.”
He turned his head to look at his former master, his eyes catching the light cast from the dim lamp that was the only thing keeping full darkness at bay. “You won’t die. Not yet.”
“I would think you’d be celebrating…the last Jedi on his deathbed.” Obi-Wan tried to laugh but it turned into a painful deep coughing that took away his breath and made the room spin.
Suddenly, his visitor was nearer to the bed, leaning over him. Surely that wasn’t worry Obi-Wan saw in his eyes.
Finally, catching his breath, Obi-Wan rasped, “No…Obi-Wan Kenobi is dead. He died a long time ago. I’m Ben…just Ben.” He felt tears threaten to trickle from the corners of his eyes and closed them tightly.
“Well, Ben, I don’t think it’s your time yet.”
* * * * * *
Obi-Wan felt the touch of a wet cloth on his hot brow, soothing down each side of his face. A cool hand touched his own, sliding on to press firmly on his wrist for a few moments. He sighed when the hand was drawn away, but then felt the bed shift as Anakin sat on the edge.
Still keeping his eyes closed against the man who was…but couldn’t be…sitting beside him, he cleared his throat and spoke again carefully. “I didn’t want to leave you there…but I knew you wouldn’t come with me and I didn’t think I was strong enough to force you.”
“Oh, I don’t know…a man with no legs and missing an arm could be forced to do quite a lot of things.” Though slightly sarcastic, his voice lacked any real anger and the cloth continued to soothe across Obi-Wan’s face.
“Since then…I’ve thought of a dozen things I should have done…should have said to you. Things to make you see…that it didn’t have to be that way. I should have helped you get away from him. Not left you to him.” His voice broke and he could no longer control the tears that seemed to pour from his eyes.
“It’s over and done with, Obi-Wan. Perhaps…it was meant to be that way.” He gently wiped the tears from Obi-Wan’s face.
Obi-Wan opened his eyes and looked at him. Looked at the face as familiar to him as his own had once been. “I wished you were mine, you know. My son. I was proud of you. I should have told you. Then maybe you wouldn’t have gone to Palpatine.”
Anakin’s hand paused and his eyes took on a faraway look. “It wasn’t just Palpatine. Things hadn’t been right for a long time. I…wasn’t the Jedi I should have been.”
Obi-Wan watched him…wondering. “Why didn’t you tell me about Padme?” he finally whispered. “Did you think I wouldn’t have helped you? Did you think I couldn’t understand how it was to love someone? Ani…” He shivered, suddenly feeling as cold as he had been hot just a few minutes before. He reached out his hand to the other one…to the dark one…but Anakin moved away, rising to his feet.
He stood looking at Obi-Wan for what seemed an infinite amount of time but which was certainly only moments. “I’ll make you some tea. That always made you feel better.” He turned and walked through the doorway into the little kitchen where Obi-Wan kept his food and supplies. Obi-Wan could hear things opening and closing, hear liquid pouring.
Soon he was back, a cup of hot, fragrant tea in each hand. He set them on the small table by the bed, and then helped a shaky Obi-Wan sit up. He picked up one of the cups and carefully held it as Obi-Wan took slow sips of it. After half the tea was gone, and Obi-Wan’s eyes were beginning to drift shut, he set it back on the table and started to ease the older man back down onto the pillow.
But Obi-Wan suddenly gripped Anakin to him, frantic. “No…don’t leave me yet. I don’t want you to go…” He laid his head on the younger man’s shoulder. He’s not real. He’s not here. His mind mocked him but he no longer cared. He should be here…with me. This is how it should be. He could feel the roughness of the cloak Anakin wore against his cheek. Could feel his warmth. Could feel him breathe.
Anakin’s hand rubbed circles on Obi-Wan’s back, easing some of his pain. Obi-Wan felt himself drifting to sleep. But he’d forgotten something…he frowned, rubbing his throbbing head slowly against the other man’s shoulder…fighting the sudden heavy sleepiness that was washing over him. Luke. I should tell him about Luke…
* * * * * *
Slowly, Obi-Wan opened his eyes. It was light enough that he could clearly see his surroundings. Early morning he thought, still cool.
He was better, he realized. The burning fever was gone. His body felt weak, trembly, but no longer in pain. He listened to the stillness, letting his groggy force senses gradually flow around him, seeking any danger. Seeking…what? He rose up on his elbows suddenly, looking all around him. Where was he? Had he gone?
Gradually, Obi-Wan lowered himself back down to the bed, gripping the covers tightly. Of course he had gone. He’d never been here. No one had been here. Only in his fevered dreams. He felt familiar regret wash over him and anger at himself for his wishful imaginings, even after so many years.
He closed his eyes, letting himself flow into a light meditation to calm his mind and help further heal his weak body. After a while, he became aware of the approach of another human not far from his home, and pulled himself from his bed. He forced himself to walk steadily out of the doorway and into the brightness of the morning suns.
He recognized the man before he even saw him clearly. Owen Lars.
“Well, this is an unexpected pleasure, Owen. I must admit I am surprised.” He knew that Owen did not care for him at all. The result of a bit of knowledge of Kenobi’s background and the fear that young Luke might one day be snatched away as suddenly as he’d been given.” Obi-Wan had long ago given up on the idea of being called a friend by the man.
Owen stopped a few feet from the doorway, from Obi-Wan, breathing a little heavily from his trek from where he’d left his speeder. He had aged since the last time they’d seen each other. His face as creased as Obi-Wan’s was. Apparently, the sun and sand wasn’t kind to him either.
He appeared to be alone and Obi-Wan felt a fleeting regret that he would not get to see Luke. Finally, Owen found his voice and asked, “Are you well?”
Surprised, Obi-Wan felt his eyebrows raise sharply. “I…have not been well but now I’m on the mend.” He frowned, thinking. “But how did you know?”
Owen shuffled his feet and nervously stuck his hands in his pockets. “Knew you hadn’t been around in a while. Then, two days ago, I heard from the Jawas that they’d stopped to see if you wanted to trade or buy anything…but you didn’t answer as you usually do.” He dropped his head, eyes on the sandy ground. “Beru said maybe I should check…”
“Ah, yes, Beru…that explains it. Well, you may tell her that I am well again and I thank her for her concern. And you too, of course.”
“Yes, well…I’d better be going…lot of work to do today.” He turned to go, hesitated, “I’ll tell her what you said.”
“Owen…” Obi-Wan took a step closer to the retreating farmer. “How is Luke? He must be almost fifteen now. I would like to see him sometime…”
“He’s fine,” Owen answered sharply. “Busy helping me. We really don’t have time for visiting.” Owen looked at Obi-Wan with a thinly veiled warning in his eyes, turned and quickly disappeared down the pathway.
Obi-Wan sighed, leaning against the side of the door. Owen would not change his mind. He would have liked to have been a bigger part of the boy’s life, but he’d have to be content that Luke had a safe home, far away from the Emperor’s clutches. And his father’s. The sadistic voice whispered in Obi-Wan’s mind.
He walked, slightly unsteady, back inside. He stood looking at the messy bed for a moment, wondering if he had the energy or the will to change the dirty coverings. His eyes strayed to the bedside table and to the two cups sitting there.
He walked closer, a frown creasing his pale, weathered face. One cup was half full of tea, the other almost empty. To the side was a folded white cloth. He reached out and touched it and felt the lingering dampness. He looked to his kitchen, mind searching for some memory of making tea while he was ill. No, of course you didn’t make the tea. Anakin did. The voice in his head mocked him.
He put his hand out, fingers barely touching the cup that had been almost drained. Jerked them back again as if they’d been burned. Memories…feelings…brushed at him madly. He turned, eyes wildly searching the room. “Anakin…” His voice broke and he fell to his knees against the bed. Was this how his life would end? In insanity?
No! He had to be strong. For Anakin’s son. He had to protect Luke. Protect him as he hadn’t protected his father. He drug himself back to his feet, having to rely on the force to keep himself upright and steady. He cleared his mind of all thoughts, letting the force take over and guide him while he cleaned his bed, and then his body, of the traces of his illness. Still though, it was many hours before he could make himself pick up the two cups, and the white cloth lying beside them, and take them into the kitchen and rub away the sorrowful memories.