Title: quote Add To Memories unquote
Pairing: A/O, A/P
Time: AU, but generally three years after Revenge of the Sith
Disclaimer: I own nothing recognizable.
An exercise in an all-conversation fic, in which Padme sensibly continues to use her diaphragm each and every time, and Obi-Wan was actually crushed by that platform, because it certainly looked like it on first viewing. // indicates thoughts //.
- Dessert, folks?
- Nah. Barriss, you?
- No, thank you.
- Here ya go, folks. Come again soon, hear?
- Look at this, Barriss. Dex's raised his prices.
- He's entitled. Anakin, I suggested this dinner to keep in touch with you. You're my friend and we hardly ever see each other.
- That's true. Ansion seems like a lifetime ago. Seven years ago, huh. Palpatine was still alive, I hadn't met Padme again, and Obi-Wan ...
- Anakin, Obi-Wan's not getting any better.
- You mean his memory. It's not anything to do with his legs, is it?
- No, he's completely overcome the crushing injury. In fact, he Force-leaped in therapy this morning. I guided him, of course, but you should have seen him! No, it's the brain's recovery that is stalled. We don't allow him to deal with new faces anymore. The second shift healers understand, naturally, but it is vey difficult for them to be continuously introduced to him, day after day. And it takes an entire therapy session for him to relax enough to trust them; the next day, it's as if he had never met any of them. I do all his therapy now, and I'm asking, friend to friend, to allow Master Luminara to initiate shock treatments.
- I have good reasons for not wanting this particular treatment, Barriss. I've researched it, too, and you know as well as I do that it is not always successful.
- No, it is not. My Master can explain it more fully. But Anakin, if it does succeed, it will mean a three hundred per cent memory gain for at least three weeks. Master Luminara has cleared her entire morning tomorrow to discuss the situation with you. You won't walk out of a meeting again, will you?
- All right, all right. I'm ... open for input. I have problems with him being subjected to the procedure, that's all. He's been hurt enough, and the treatments are so invasive and, well, violent.
- Remember, Anakin, we care for Obi-Wan, too.
- Obi-Wan's legs are in fine shape, Anakin. You got him here in time for the breaks to be repaired and the tendons sutured, and the bacta tank did the rest. No, it's his brain that needs further treatment. Have you seen the latest scans?
- Let me darken the room; here. The violet area is the underlying injury, the blue being the amygdala, the hippocampus and other structures crucial to memory. It's not an unheard-of condition, although the most studied case involved symptoms due to chronic epilepsy, not the idiopathic epilepsy that Obi-Wan developed after Dooku's attack. Obi-Wan's condition today is this: the diagnosis of anterograde amnesia is the same as three years ago. He has regained the ability to remember lists of words and even stories from day to day, something some others in his general condition can never do. If he had had an infection or been poisoned, for instance, he might not have the ability to remember even being given a list to memorize.
- So he still can't remember events since the injury, like my marriage being public, Palpatine's and Dooku's deaths, Barriss' Knighthood ...
- No, but his mind has recovered in many areas, Anakin. The tremors are gone. He uses a training lightsaber, did you know that?
- A training lightsaber?
- Yes, we sparred last week. You know he had to relearn a few katas, which he did beautifully, but he's stalled in this one area.
- Wait. How did he learn katas if he can't remember day-to-day things?
- He can access the Force sporadically, and the Force came through for him. I can't explain it any other way.
- Here, look, the red zone is the temporal lobe near the hippocampus and shock treatments involve placing electrodes here and here ---
- ... Uh ...
- --- yes, I know that it sounds harsh --- and transmitting a sufficient current to induce a convulsion.
- See, I don't know if it's worth it all. Can't he just go on? He's not in pain.
- True. Each day is mostly a blank slate to him. He's been slightly emotionally disturbed these three years, but lately the only time he seems greatly agitated is at night. He "sundowns," as we call the syndrome in mental patients. He paces. He says that he must warn you and guide you not to make a terrible error. This severe agitation began only last week and last night was the worst. Barriss barely talked him out of escaping the ward to try to find you. He kept repeating, "No, Anakin, don't!"
- What could it be? A true Force vision?
- We don't know. The timing for this treatment is something to consider, Anakin. I've seen a few cases when the agitation increases and the patient becomes violent, or he completely internalizes and goes catatonic. It's my Healer's intuition that Obi-Wan Kenobi is building to an episode of great distress.
- All ... all right. Go ahead with it.
- Can I see him? Right now?
- Of course, Anakin. Ah, Padme, you made it. So good to see you. You look sparkling, my dear.
- Hello, Ani. "Sparkling," Luminara?
- In the Force. Your condition cannot be hidden by those heavy clothes, clever though they are.
- And Motee was so proud of her design! She has been waiting six years until we started our family to show off her maternity designer clothes.
- Angel, we may have to go public with the pregnancy, too.
- I suppose, Ani. How is Obi-Wan?
- I'm going in to see him now. Luminara says he's reached a crisis.
- Ani, you always get so depressed when you visit, you know you do.
- Never mind that. I want to see if he's benefitting from a new treatment.
- In the beginning, Luminara, we visited him every possible day, remember? Then every week. Now every month. Ani, I'd like to visit him, too, if that is all right, Luminara?
- Oh, I think so. Please be discreet; you know that he still believes that Anakin and he are together.
- Just like last time. I know, Luminara.
- Anakin! My Anakin ... mmmmm ... oh. Padme.
- Obi-Wan. Dear Master Jedi.
- Anakin, Padme, listen. The vision that I had yesterday morning after my therapy --- don't look so, Anakin, I'm all right --- it's, it's unbelievable. Palpatine is the Sith Lord we've all been looking for. I've told you two first. Anakin, you must alert Master Yoda and Padme, you must warn the Senate as to what will happen. I, I know that I'm not at my best, but put a lightsaber in my hand and I will back up the arrest team. The Jedi must take control of the Senate briefly until a new Chancellor is selected, and then ... and ... why aren't you surprised? Anakin?
- Obi-Wan. Master. I don't doubt that you've had a true vision, but it isn't exactly, well, timely.
- How so?
- Master, when you were injured three years ago on the Invisible Hand, Dooku crushed you with a platform. Your legs were damaged and your head took a terrible blow. You ... you nearly died, Master, and when I held you in my arms while you convulsed, Palpatine told me to leave you behind. Not once, but twice.
- And something stopped you?
- I loved you so, Obi-Wan.
- It's all right; Padme knows. I loved you, but even if I hadn't, if it had been someone under my command, I still would not have left anyone behind to die. Well, when he said that, I realized that he was not who I thought he was. I lay you down on the deck after you'd started to breathe again and confronted him. We came to blows, we fought ... he had a red blade to his lightsaber. I killed him, Obi-Wan.
- You, alone?
- Dear Master Jedi, later we found on his agenda an Order Sixty-Six, an order to turn all clones against their Jedi commanders and murder them wherever they were, in camp, in battle, in the Temple. Anakin saved the Jedi Order.
- My own Anakin. The Chosen One. Ohhh ...
- Catch him, Anakin!
- I've got him --- oof --- into the chair ---
- He's coming around, Anakin. I'll steady him, while you fetch Luminara. It doesn't seem to be another seizure, though.
- mmhmmm ... Padme, what I'm sensing ... you're pregnant?
- Something else ... no, no, it can't be. I must be wrong ... Anakin is the father?
- Master, please let me explain.
- Anakin, this can't be.
- Master, I never wanted to hurt you.
- Too late.
- Obi-Wan, Anakin and I are married. //Don't tell him for how long.// We love each other, but what you had with Anakin no one can ever take from you.
- Padme, I'll handle this. Master, we've had years as man and wife. //Don't tell him how many.//
- Don't call me that! It's not true anymore!
- Mas--- Obi-Wan, please calm down.
- You're married, Palpatine's no longer a threat --- it's too much to take in.
- Yes, I know that it must be overwhelming. Obi-Wan, please calm yourself. Don't you see, you're much better now, M--- Obi-Wan. We all were hoping that you would recover, and now you're stronger than before, thanks to these treatments. Can't you feel it?
- Where do you and I stand, Anakin? I will not come between husband and wife. My young one, what we had together was so good, so right.
- It was. I wanted it to last forever. I wanted so much in those days.
- Obi-Wan, when you didn't breathe and nearly died, I almost died, too. If it had not been for your pain and my realizing Palpatine could not have ordered me to abandon you if he weren't Sith, the entire galaxy would be much worse off. Please hear me out.
- So you're saying that the problems of three people don't amount to much?
- Obi-Wan, you taught me how to love, but then I was alone. The Council urged me to take a Padawan learner, but I couldn't. Padme and I would visit you, and you wouldn't remember it from visit to visit. For three years, Obi-Wan! Luminara warned us about hoping for a full recovery.
- I've got to say this now, before I forget. I'm afraid that I'll forget. Please don't come to see me anymore, Anakin.
- I'll never abandon you, Obi-Wan. I can't. I love you.
- Anakin, I can't take another round of revelations. Today has been ... has been devastating.
- I'm so sorry. I know, those are weak words.
- Don't be sorry for me. I'll recover. You have a family, a life. And I have my memories, at least for today.
- You couldn't help what happened to you, Obi-Wan.
- Apparently. But I can help it now, and help myself. Please go, Anakin. Please.
- I'm, I'm glad that you are better, even if this had to happen.
DAY EIGHTY- EIGHT
- (yawn) ... ahem ... (cough) ... yeah, Skywalker here. Oh, Force, no. When? I'm on my way. Yes, I'll hurry, Barriss. Skywalker out.
- ... mmmm ... Ani ... what is it?
- Bad news. It's Obi-Wan. He's had a stroke.
- I'm coming, too.
- Barriss says it doesn't look good, Padme. He's unconscious.
- Oh, Anakin, I'm so sorry. Here, take my speeder chip. I'll come when Elle is awake enough to look after the twins. Go.
- He's holding on for you, Anakin. Master Luminara resuscitated him once already. Third door on the left. Hurry!
- Master ... Obi-Wan ... Master! I'm here now. Please don't go. Breathe ... breathe ... that's it. Don't stop! I love you, Master. I loved you first, remember? Please stay with us ... oh, oh no! Sweetheart, I can't say goodbye. Uhhhn, my head, our bond, it's fraying, fading to ...I can't feel you anymore. M-M-May the Force be with you ... my dearest Master ...
- Anakin, I came as fast as I ... oh. It's happened. Oh, my dear ... there, there ...
- He's gone, Padme. He, he f-f-fought so hard.
- He brought you up to be strong, like him, Ani. His memory will give you strength.
- My memory of him ... yeah, I still have my memories.