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Title: Waking
Author: nostalgia
Rating: probably r for "bad words".
Category: angst. ani/obi unrequited slash. obi/f *ahem*. (don't get your hopes up, it's only implied)
Warning: Contains heterosexuality! Also bad words.
Disclaimer: i blatantly don't own any of these characters, but then i never said i did. did i? did i?
Feedback/Archive: oh, archive me everywhere, i crave attention.
Summary: consider this a sequel to the pwp of your choice - anakin's pov on waking up to find obi's brought home `company'. this is slashy (most of the angst, but alas no hot boy-on-boy action), but thankfully without the mental image of liam neeson in any way undressed (*shudder*). goes a bit monastic in places.
Etc: This was lying about and the list needed slash. Aren't I benevolent?

I wake myself before the sunrise, intent on using the opportunity the early hour affords me. I glance out of the small window and check that the sun is still safely below the horizon. Reassured, I start to get dressed in silence.

I like to watch him sleep. As simple as that. Calm and unguarded, expression unadulterated by reaction. You'll have noticed, no doubt, the way that people hold themselves slightly differently when there's someone else there. Hence the shock if you surprise them when they thought they were alone.

I run thoughts on the morals of privacy and observation over in my mind as I dress, putting on the cleanest version I can find of the clothes I've worn every day since I was 9. The idea behind the uniform look, Obi-Wan tells me, is that material possessions are a distraction. Clothing becomes a material possession when you have a choice of what to wear. A Jedi should therefore own no more than he needs. Ownership brings greed, pride, envy and corruption. It brings a sense of power and possession unbecoming in one who exists to serve the ever-demanding will of the Force.

This, of course, does not explain why the Order is the major financial power in the galactic core. The Order as a whole is apparently free to accumulate all the material possessions it `needs' as long as the individuals within it live in voluntary poverty to maintain its appearance of privation. The logic of this is never questioned, and we have enough influence in the Senate to ensure that the Republic's routine financial inspections never bother the Jedi. Not that I'm suggesting any misappropriation of funds, you understand... We have the status of a `charitable organisation', exempting us from taxes and tributes. To imply that the Republic makes any other, more political, demands on an order of 10,000 highly- trained, Force-using warriors would be...indiscreet. Those stories you hear about assassinated politicians being mysteriously abandoned by their Jedi escorts moments before their deaths are obviously malicious rumours. Accidents happen. Our anonymous benefactors may benefit from certain of these accidents, but who am I to speculate?

I once asked Obi-Wan who paid for our food and clothing. He told me that "The Force provides". I don't think he knew. I'm fairly certain that he didn't want to know.

But, I digress from my point - the robes are a symptom of our asceticism. The robes are also camouflage, showing that we don't consider ourselves any higher on the food chain than the average galactic citizen. The high-energy laser sword strapped to our belts is in case anyone actually believes that rather unsubtle piece of propaganda.

My own lightsaber is left lying on my bed, daring the dust to gather on its cold surface. I need to look casual in case he wakes up. Considering some of the nightmares I've told him about, he'd probably jump to conclusions if I was armed. I know I would. It's easier now that I'm older, for us both. It can't be most settling experience to lull a crying eleven-year-old back to sleep when he's just told you that he saw you dying. It was only years later that I noticed he never asked me how it happened. Sometimes I think that he's already resigned to it, that he's reluctantly accepted himself as a martyr to the cause.

Once, when we'd stayed up too late and decided that one night without sleep wasn't going to do us any harm, he let slip that the Chosen One's Master had a prophesy of his own to deal with. He'd been brought before the Council to be informed of his Apprenticeship. They looked at him, asked him the usual questions, told him to leave and then debated it. They actually debated it. The presentation to the Council is supposed to be a formality, they ask you if you're ready, you say "Yes" (of course you do, you're twelve years old. Like you're going to say "No, actually, I'm not. I'd be a terrible Jedi, send me off to be a farmer.") and they nod sagely and tell you who you'rebeing Apprenticed to. But they debated it. For hours. He only got accepted because someone got out his records and argued that the vibes they'd got from him were echoes of the rest of the Kenobi family being wiped out by heavy artillery fire in a protracted religious war, leaving the surviving three-day-old baby trapped under burning rubble until an emergency medical team managed to dig the orphan out. So he was allowed to become a Padawan.

But it's not exactly reassuring to know that Yoda took one look at you and proclaimed that "There is Dark in this one's life".

And then, of course, there was Naboo. The Dark, it seemed, was keen on this one. Now, I've thought about this, and I know that he has. And from what I can pick up, he arrived at the same conclusion as I did; the Dark Side let him live.

Understand the issues here - he beat a Sith who had just killed a Jedi Master. Obi-Wan is good, but is he really that good? He was younger than he is now, of course, but the Sith was young too. Obi-Wan was tired, he'd just seen his closest friend skewered, he was confused. A Sith is trained to kill Jedi. A Jedi is trained in self-defence. If there is no alternative, absolutely none , a Jedi will kill. A Jedi faces another lightsabre only in a duel with other Jedi, and only rarely - after all, a Jedi is never going to fight against a laser sword, just blasters and projectile weaponry. Obi-Wan and the Sith were not evenly matched, my Master was at a distinct disadvantage. And yet he won. He took on the Dark Side and he defeated it. He surprised a Sith with a move a child could have anticipated, and his opponent's reaction time was at least double what it should have been. Obi-Wan should have died on Naboo, and he knows it. The Dark has touched him. It wants him. It needs him. He doesn't know why. So to be told that his Apprentice dreams of a dark warrior who ends the duel the way it should have ended disturbs him. But it's just a dream. He's not going to die. I'm not going to let him die.

Love is a very curious thing. The psychologists would tell me, of course, that this isn't love. After all, he's the role-model, right? The older and wiser, embodying all of the things I want so desperately to be. Responding to me with kindness and encouragement,joking and handing out platitudes to live by. And, like the textbook demands, utterly unobtainable. Crush material, beyond any trace of adoubt. The poets, however, would call it love. I'll ignore how I feel about poets for once, and go with them on this.

He must know. He has to. He's not stupid, and I'm not exactly the prodigy when it comes to hiding my emotions. That's another one I don't get - the emotions. Why should I have to pretend I don't feel anything? Obi-Wan sits in his room for hours, trying to get rid of his emotions. All of them. He sits there beating himself up over anger, jealousy, lust...and once he gets them he's going to start on the other ones - love, sympathy, happiness... It's stupid. And of course, he fails, which leads to guilt, which is another emotion. And so it's back to the start again. A Jedi should not laugh because he's happy, he should laugh to put someone else at ease. Crap.

No, scrap that. Actually it's a good thing. I've spent a lot of time convincing myself that the reason he doesn't seem to feel the same way about me is that he doesn't know what he feels anymore. That it's all so messed up in his mind that he just doesn't realise that he needs me. That makes sense. More sense than any other option I can think of.

I open my door as quietly as I can, stepping out into the kitchen-space where we spend most of our time. Asceticism sucks.

I make my way to his room, pausing to listen at the door. My ear presses against the unadorned metal as I check for any sound. He isn't usually up this early, but I want to be certain. After enough silence has elapsed for me to be happy, I ease the door open, trying to stop it creaking.

She's...I'm not good with ages...older than me, maybe about the same age as him. Human, same basic colouring as me. Height is hard to judge when the subject is horizontal. She probably looks prettier when she's awake. From the tangle of limbs I figure that she's...that they've...that...

Fucking. That's what it was. Something coarse and vulgar, not too much emotional investment, because he doesn't do that kind of thing. At least, he doesn't seem to. Usually. As far as I...

Who is she, anyway? The cruel side of me makes a few comments about hourly rates of rental, but that's not an option I'm keen on - it was here for free if he was really that desperate. And he would have known. He must know.

I don't recognise her. I wonder if it has anything to do with that stupid `bond-mate' thing they do, on the rare occasions that they'll actually admit to having a sexuality. I hope not. Or do I? At least a definite no on the availability front would be something to work with.

He can like women too, that's OK. I can deal with that. Would I be more or less upset if it was a man lying there? More upset...? More than this?

The sheet slides down her back a little as she stirs in her sleep, moulding her body against his. I stare at bare skin. Skin that he's touched, kissed, caressed...

Fucked, sneers the little voice in my head, making pointed remarks about the fact that it's her lying there and not me. Outlining in excruciating detail exactly what that means about the way he thinks of her, then starting on what it means about his feelings towards me. My tear ducts finally join the party.

I close the door to give myself some privacy. Despite my earlier claims to the contrary, I'm starting to get some control over my emotions - I make it back to my room before I collapse in on myself. Later, I know, the sneering voice will be back, pulling me out of despair into anger. Anger at her, at me, at him...no, not at him. I'll never be angry at him. I'm never going to hurt him. Never.

Never.

End

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