Just an ahead note: A passing familiarity with the CGI clone wars show can be helpful. (And I mean passing. At present no revisiting of episodes is planned) Also, I have never read Twilight and I am not writing a random fixit. And if Canon!Anakin had had half a brain he would have caught on to Palp's duplicity by the time he forced the council to accept Anakin as a master. At the latest.
The hallways and corridors of the Jedi Temple lay bathed in darkness at near the middle of the local night. Jedi Master Yoda was not as young as he used to be, and those long meetings were a chore. Necessary, but not something he looked forward to.
He was on his way to the Senate, as Senator Organa had requested an audience the moment the meeting was over, no matter the time. To that end he intended to walk the distance, but Organa had insisted on sending a speeder. So he waited in the shadows of the tower hangar near the top of the temple. He used this time to good effect, as there were many things to be pondered, not the least Obi-Wan once again suggesting making Annakin a full Master. But more than that, the war wasn't going anywhere, and the last attack by the CIS had shown painfully how weak the Republic was.
In truth, Yoda and the rest of the council were more disturbed by the cloud that lay over the Force and that had prevented them from sensing this bold attack before it happened. Between that and the still elusive Sith Lord, the Council had many things to do and not much time left for it.
That Senator Organa wanted to speak to him was no light at the end of the tunnel either. The CIS raid had scared many of the Senators and Yoda already knew that Organa would tell him that getting Chancellor Palpatine to relinquish his emergency powers would now be harder than ever.
In a moment of clarity Yoda realized that the Republic was collapsing under it's own weight and that the Jedi Order with it's traditional approach to nearly everything had done little but look on. He would need to meditate on this at length when he had a moment of peace.
"Attend to things, I must first." he said to himself and rose from the empty container he had been sitting on. No time like the present. He looked out over the ferrocrete expanse of the dock towards where the magnetic field sealed off the entrance. A small speeder was approaching, going recklessly fast. Not the Senator's transport then.
It was then that Yoda felt it. It was not so much a disturbance in the Force, but more a beacon of emotion. It was weak, and Yoda doubted that anyone not on this deck or even outside the hangar could feel it, and he knew that he was alone. The speeder came to a halt, and now that the Pilot wasn't moving, Yoda concentrated more on it, taking care not to be felt in return.
It was a turmoil of feelings. Elation, pure, unadultured joy, but also anger and fear. The pilot...
Yoda's eyes snapped open. It was young Anakin Skywalker. What meant this? The young Jedi was always rash and emotional, but he was never someone to broadcast his feelings like this. To say that Yoda was intrigued now was an understatement, so he continued to 'listen' carefully. Oddly, those feelings were not directed at young Skywalker himself, nor at anyone in the temple or the Council, like Yoda would have expected, but rather towards...
The mental connection slammed shut and Yoda rose to his feet. A confrontation with Annakin was inevitable now.
"Master Yoda, it is... a surprise to find you here." Annakin stood near the hatch of his speeder, relaxed, and yet anxious to get away.
"Late it is for you to be out, young Skywalker. Meet tomorrow, the council will."
The younger Jedi wasn't exactly evasive, but thanks to the Force and good personal knowledge Yoda knew that Anakin wanted nothing more than to get away.
"Troubled you seem, my young Jedi. Many emotions I sense in you."
Anakin didn't reply at once, clearly fighting within himself between opening up to a Jedi Master who, while having been not exactly forthcoming with help, now seemed actually interested.
"It is... nothing, Master Yoda."
"Exhausting the past few days have been. Rest we must, in the future dangers lie."
Anakin bowed respectfully and was about to leave the hangar as fast as his dignity would allow, but even as the senatorial speeder came to collect Yoda and passed the forcfield, he spoke again.
"Troubled Feelings a path to the Dark Side are. Mindful of that you must be, my young Jedi. Accepting advice, weak it is not."
With that they parted ways, Yoda into the speeder and Anakin deeper into the temple.
As the speeder moved away and into the ordered chaos of Coruscant traffic, Anakin Skywalker was surprised to find that he had let his emotions be sensed like that. After years of hiding his illegal attachment, he had much experience in doing so, but Yoda had sensed it as if he had written it on one of the city's billboards.
He breathed himself for letting it happen and as he turned to walk towards the inner temple, he clamped his mental barriers shut. It was bad enough that he had to deal with those dreams. Even though it was hours, he was still haunted by the images of Padmé dying in childbirth. He knew that he would be until he found out what to do against it.
As the doors of the lift closed behind him he allowed himself a sigh. He wished dearly he had someone to talk to about it, but he did not want to worry his wife with his.. dreams? Visions?
He shook his head. No, not her, not right now, not ever. But there was no one else. To anyone he would have to explain why he was having the visions of the Senator for Naboo, and she would understand, but worry. And as little as Anakin knew about pregnant women, he was sure that stress and worry was not healthy.
Obi Wan? Obi Wan would understand, and his old master would be only too happy to help, but...
Anakin shook his head. No, he would have to do this alone. He would survive. She would survive.
The lift doors dinged, opened and he confidently walked into the bustle of the Jedi temple, on a search for a quiet corner in which to calm himself. The Force would guide him.
At the same time his wife was in her Senatorial quarters. Routine comm traffic had a habit of piling up if she wasn't watching, and in the last few days she had had so many other things to think about. Whatever briefings the Chancellor's office gave the senate, the war was not going well. At best, it could be called a stalemate, and Padmé Amidala was at a loss what to do about it. Anie didn't know either, but at least he could do something about it. Thinking of her husband, she placed both her hands on her stomach and smiled. For all that was going on, one thing was in her life that she knew would give her great happiness.
This happy train of thought was interrupted by a beep from her terminal. She frowned. The sound indicated that it was coming in on an emergency channel that was on a very low bandwith, outside the normal holonet and generally only known to Jedi and Senators.
She pressed 'accept' but instead of the usual hologram only a seemingly random sequence of numbers, letters and symbols appeared over her desk. The message was scrambled.
As Padmé studied the code arrayed in front of her she began to suspect that she knew this particular sequence from someplace. She wished that R2-D2 was here, but he was with Anie at the temple, and C3PO didn't have the Astromech's military-grade codesplicing abilities. Nor was a Bothan handy. But of course! She realized that this sequence seemed familiar because it was one of the special encryption codes the Jedi Order used. That meant that she likely wouldn't be able to decrypt it as she only had access to Republic Code Software. She ran it anyway, but the sequence stubbornly refused to change into an actual message, even after almost an hour of trying.
So what was she supposed to do? If this was someone sending an encoded message on a supposedly already secure emergency channel it implied that that person had no desire to be seen in the communications centre the Senate had exclusive access to. It being a Jedi code, albeit an older one, implied that the sender had at least a tentative connection to the order.
Decision made, she reached over to where she had placed her personal comm on a stack of datapads. She keyed in the code that connected her directly to Anakin, but even after several minutes of waiting he had yet to answer. She was only mildly annoyed, there were any number of reasons why he could not talk, from council meetings to meditation sessions.
The problem was, she had no idea when he would be here next. Even when he was on Coruscant she couldn't depend on any sort of normal schedule. It always hurt, but she had known what she was letting herself in for with a Jed..
She remembered that Obi Wan was still on-world, and he would help her with this.
Her husband's old Master answered almost immediately.
"Senator Amidala, what can I do for you?" Obi Wan said, the blue hologram making a courteous bow over her table.
"Master Obi Wan, there is a matter of some discretion I need to discuss with you. In person."
Obi Wan was mystified but he knew that the Senator would not say things like that on a whim.
"Of course, Senator. I will be joining you at your quarters in-"
"No," Padmé interrupted, "I will come to the Temple, Master."
"But.." Obi Wan was about to protest that in her condition she should not be forced to make the trip, but he knew how headstrong she was, and he knew from all too personal experience that going up against her thick skull was an exercise in futility. He supressed a sigh. "Very well, Senator. I will meet you at the main entrance."
Pleasantries were exchanged before she severed the connection.
Next thing she did was to copy the message onto an encrypted datapad and erase it from her terminal's memory, over-writing it three times before doing the same thing to her appartements comm array memory. Best not to take any chances.
Half an hour later her speeder landed on the public space in front of the Temple. Dormé had insisted that she be accompanied by someone other than a protocol droid, but she had insisted. The chances of her ever getting attacked within sight of the Jedi Temple were very remote. At best.
Obi Wan did not seem to share her assurance, as he met her before she had taken more than half a dozen steps.
"You really should have let me come to you, Senator."
"Hardly." Padmé said, "My.. 'condition' is not a dilapidating injury."
Obi Wan shook his head at the senatorial grace with which she had said that and bowed.
"The fault is entirely mine then, Senator."
The grin he received in reply made it obvious that she had said it in good humour.
Neither spoke as they crossed to the temple. Once inside, he looked at her and asked: "I have to ask Senator, why did you not try to contact Skywalker? I'm sure he would have been glad to assist you."
He had meant nothing by it so the Senator's somewhat... worried response astounded him. She only missed a single step, and by the time she had caught up to him nothing could be read on her face, but Obi Wan was sure that there was something. And if the suspicions he'd held in the deepest recesses of his mind since the start of the war were fed once more.
But now was not the time to speak to her of that, and he sincerely hoped there never would be.
"Well Master Obi Wan, I tried to, but he failed to answer. Either he changed his comm-code since we last spoke or he has something better to do than talk to a passing acquaintance."
Obi Wan chose to ignore the tiny hesitation at the last two words.
"So, how do you suggest we proceed, Senator?"
Padmé stopped in the middle of the hallway they were in and frowned.
"Considering that who used the code either tries to keep the contents confidential and has a jedi connection... We might want to have your Astromech Droid look at it before we decide what to do."
Obi Wan sighed. "There might be a problem with that. Nowadays we wipe our Droids' mission memories at least once a month. A code that old. Last time we wiped was only just before the Chancellor..."
Padmé stopped again and looked at him. "Are you telling me that you don't keep old codes archived somewhere?"
He shook his head. "No, Senator. I wasn't saying that. No, we will have to use the code archive in the library."
Padmé said nothing else. While non-Jedi visitors to the temple weren't all that rare, almost none had been allowed into where the order kept all it's secrets. She felt immensely honoured and kept a respectful silence as they walked through the high doors and past the rows upon rows of shelves.
Master Jocasta Nu , the keeper of records for the Order was found near the same starmap where Obi Wan's voyage to the discovery of the Clone Army had begun. It appeared as if she was marking the frontlines of the war, as well as they were known. She turned towards them and appeared completely unfazed at the outsider in her domain.
"Master Kenobi, Senator Amidala. It is a great pleasure to see you both."
"Good day, Master Nu." Obi Wan replied with a courteous nod of the head. "We have an encrypted message we want you to look at."
"Your own Astromech Droids could not read it?"
"Unfortunately, not, Master." Padmé said. I have tried all the codes I know and have access to, and Master Kenobi told me that his droid was wiped very recently."
"I see. Do you believe that message is important?"
"Yes, Master." she replied with a nod, "The way it came into my possession tells me it could be very valuable. And dangerous."
"Play it for me please."
She did, and the same numbers hovered over the holoprojector in her hand. Nu watched it repeat three times before stepping back. "Yes, that is an old Jedi code. At least nine standard months old."
"How can you tell?" Obi Wan asked.
"Some of those elements went out of use around that time. I will have to search the entire code library since the beginning of the war." Nu motioned towards a set of seats in a corner between a shelf and the wall. "Why don't you sit down, Senator. Those children have to be heavy to carry around all day."
"Thank you, Master." Padmé said with audible relief and sat down, Obi Wan beside her. 'Children?' he thought, but when he reached out through the Force it was clear. The three force Signatures around the Senator were all too obvious. And exceptionally strong force Signatures they were indeed...
He shouldn't have looked without her permission anyway, and he was of half a mind to tell her what he had done and apologize for it. But then he didn't say anything. So far Padmé had refused question from all quarters as to the parentage of her offspring and he had no desire to add himself to that list.
"Are you all right, Senator?" he asked instead as she grimaced and held one of her ribs.
"It's fine, Obi Wan. One of them just kicked which is perfectly normal."
Padmé was highly amused at the Jedi Master's worry at something that was indeed perfectly normal. Little conversation was exchanged while they waited, and she was glad for an opportunity to rest. Just for a little while...
"I have completed decoding the message."
She jerked awake as Master Nu returned with a holoprojector. "I have not watched it, but judging by who's code it is, you may want to call him in and do this privately."
"Who does it belong to?" Obi Wan asked, suddenly worried.
"It was once assigned as a personal emergency scramble code to Anakin Skywalker."