Title: Goodbye, Old Friend
Disclaimer: *sigh* They aren't mine, okay! Sheesh!
Summary: Obi-Wan has lost much, but through young Luke Skywalker, perhaps he can gain back some of what he'd lost. POV, Flashbacks.
Feedback: Yes please!
It was the last thing I said to him. The real him, the uncorrupted, wise and compassionate man who I’d spent most of my life with. The man I had loved as a brother, moulded into a strong and fearless Jedi Knight. The man who saw me as the father he never had.
‘Goodbye, old friend.’
Oh how little I knew the truth of these words, that this would be our last goodbye. If only I had known that his confession and apology in that hangar had been a desperate plea for help. How could I have known that he was reading me his suicide note?
That the next time I would see him would be on a security camera?
I remember being absurdly disappointed that he hadn’t bothered to deactivate the internal security system. I thought I’d taught him better. I thought I’d taught him…. a lot of things…
‘From my point of view the Jedi are the enemy!’
‘Then you are lost!’
There are some words that just cannot be taken back. Some hurts that are indelibly etched onto a person’s heart that can never be healed. On that black shore on Mustafar, I was dealt such a blow, from the man who was the closest I had ever come to having my own son. Anakin had hurt me in ways no one had, or ever could, for no one had ever been that close to me before or since.
The Jedi Knight named Obi-Wan Kenobi, the man that had loved and trained and lived with Anakin Skywalker for half his life died that day, killed by his own apprentice in a cold blooded murder-suicide. The empty shell that picked up his lightsaber and walked away from the only man he ever truly loved, had never been the same.
‘You were my brother, Anakin! I loved you, but I could not save you.’
No one could. Even his wife Padme was unable to reach him. I’ll never forget the grief in her voice that day as she tried to reason with what was left of her husband. As I listened I held on to the last small hope that maybe he would listen to her, his love, his life, his reason for living. Perhaps her gentle voice and earnest pleas would turn him away from the darkness that had consumed him, but to my horror, in his rage against all things good and pure, he killed her too.
‘Liar! You turned her against me!!’
There are not enough words in any language to describe the grief that stabbed my heart with those words. Not even my darkest dreams could prepare me for the hell that our desperate battle and ultimate end cemented within my memory. The look on his face as he looked up from that burning shore of black glass and called my name…the heat and smell and screams when he burst aflame, scarring for life not only his body, but also his soul.
‘I hate you!!’
Killing him then would have been a mercy. Many times in the years since I regretted my decision to let him live, if he could. The first time I saw the black terror of his facemask, necessary to keep him alive, I wished I had given in to my compassion twenty years ago and put him out of his pain and misery.
But it was not the will of the Force.
“You fought in the Clone Wars?” asked Luke, Anakin’s son, about the same age as his father was when I last saw him. He knew nothing of his parentage, and I know everything. It breaks my heart.
“Yes,” I answer, “I was once a Jedi Knight, the same as your father.” His eyes light up, and I know I’ve grabbed his attention. Jedi. We have passed into legend. Nothing more now but whispered rumors of wizards who can control people’s minds and fight with swords of light. Even for me, the word tumbles awkwardly from my mouth, after so long, such a very long time of never speaking of it. I was a Jedi. I am a Jedi.
“I wish I’d known him,” he sighed. ‘Yes,’ my thoughts lament, ‘I wish he could have known you.’ But perhaps-
“He was the best Star Pilot in the galaxy, and a cunning warrior.” If indeed it is impossible for him to ever know his father, perhaps at least his memory can pass on to his children. In that dim hope, some of the pain of his loss lightens, and I feel free of some unseen burden. “And he was a good friend.” Really, what more to say is there? He was my best friend. There aren’t words to describe the relationship his father and I shared. Our legendary prowess as the unbeatable team, mostly because of its ‘poster-boy’ Anakin, the unspoken communication that seemed to be constant between us, and palpable during battle, his secret love of Padme he thought he’d hidden from me. I had ached to tell him how happy I was for them, but I couldn’t. I knew that Jedi were forbidden from attachments such as that, but for some reason for Anakin, it fit. It just seemed right that he should marry. Since there was no way I could explain it to the council, or express my joy to the Skywalkers, I kept silent.
But I knew.
And now I have Luke to look after, just as I did for his father. Leia’s message both startled and assured me – she is in danger but being an offspring of the legendary Hero With No Fear, and the Incorruptible Senator, I have no fear for her. And besides, her brother will be there to help her. For the first time in many long years, a smile – no, a grin works its way onto my face.
“You must learn the ways of the Force, if you’re to come with me to Alderaan.” I see the fear and wonder in his sky-blue eyes, and know for sure.
So it begins.
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