A/N: This is something I jotted down quite a while ago and decided I might as well submit it.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything Star Wars…what a shame.
The Ebon Hawk was quiet as a tomb, the low hum of the hyperdrive the only constant breaking the silence. In the long hours of travel between Dxun and Dantooine there was nothing much for the crew to do but rest. Atton had dozed off in the cockpit, an unfinished game of pazaak spread before him on the console, though his dreams showed that the game continued endlessly. Mira slept curled on her bedroll in the storage compartment, peaceful and secure for the first time in her life as a result of her new Jedi training. Mical had fallen asleep in the medlab over some all-consuming project…again. Both Visas and Kreia were meditating, though on opposite sides of the ship, as far as they could possibly get from one another. Mandalore snored loudly in the security room, sprawled out unceremoniously in a chair, an empty bottle of Tarisian ale that he'd found stashed somewhere clutched in one hand. HK-47, T3-M4 and G0-T0 had all shut down to recharge before their next mission. Bao-Dur was…where he always seemed to be: working on the ship. So involving was his work that he never noticed he was being observed, or at least he pretended not to know.
Watching him from the shadows of the doorway, Sarin, known to so many as simply "the Exile," smiled to herself. He is the same way he always was. Never a moment's rest – I wonder when he sleeps? If he sleeps. Pushing herself off the doorframe and purposely scuffing her boot on the floor to announce her presence, she walked casually toward the Zabrak. Straightening himself up, he watched as the tall raven haired Exile approached, her dark eyes and full lips smiling at him comfortably. Forcing himself to break his stare, Bao-Dur smiled mildly in response and asked, "Something you need, General?"
Raising a eyebrow playfully, Sarin responded, "What I need is for you to stop calling me General."
The Zabrak's expression hardened, his smile vanishing before he stated in his ever calm, emotionless voice, "I'm sorry. I guess I just can't get my head out of the past." He turned abruptly back to his work, the pain of her rebuke flowing off him.
Surprised at the sudden change, and feeling bad that her teasing had been misinterpreted Sarin moved to his side, laying her hand gently on his living arm as she quickly explained, "No, no, I didn't mean it like that. It's just that, every time you call me General, it…well, it reminds me of Revan."
Startled, the mechanic turned to look at her closely. Her eyes looked far away, like she was reliving a memory, but her expression was pleasant, her pale cheeks flushed slightly as her lips curled into a playful smirk. Unable to stop his curiosity, Bao-Dur asked, "Why Revan?"
Sarin moved away to sit on a nearby plasteel bin as she shrugged and explained, "Well, you know she and I were roommates on Dantooine during training. We became very close…like sisters, I'd imagine. She was so full of life, ready to take on any challenge, never backing down once she had her mind set." Her smile slowly faded and she whispered almost inaudibly, "She was Revan long before she was Darth Revan…." Bao-Dur watched in silent concern at the wide range of emotions that swept the Exile's face.
Physically shaking herself out of her melancholy thoughts, Sarin straightened up as she continued, "We must have been I'd say about 15 years old, still very much Padawans, when the Republic sent an envoy to meet with the Jedi Masters. Revan was always a fantastic storyteller, but when we saw the General leading that envoy, she became particularly…inspired." Flushing deeply at the memory, but unable to wipe the devious grin off her face, the Exile continued, "He was incredibly handsome. He had sandy blond hair, deep blue eyes, and that ever-confident air of a warrior in his prime. For weeks after their visit, Revan would make up these incredibly…indecent stories about the man – and his exploits with us female Padawans." Giggling wildly, her eyes beginning to tear up, she choked out, "She'd even title them, like 'The General Claims His Pawadan' or 'When the was Padawan Caught Skinny-dipping!'
Leaning back against the cold steel wall of the Ebon Hawk, Bao-Dur found himself much more interested in watching the animated Exile rather than listening to her story, especially after her overly descriptive account of this human male General. The sparkle in her eyes as she laughed, the flash of her perfect teeth behind her full smiling lips, the changing color of her cheeks as she blushed repeatedly, the shining black mane that swayed with her every movement all worked together to captivate him. Seeing her like this, so relaxed and open around him was a relief - these moments had become increasingly rare as their mission had progressed. She had been often sullen and evasive with everyone, preferring solitary meditations or combat drills with HK-47 to living company. Seeing her so vibrant, so alive, even for these precious few moments, made her nearly irresistible to the quiet Zabrak.
Bao-Dur startled out of his thoughts as he realized he'd been staring at Sarin with a small, almost dreamy smile on his face. She had apparently finished her story some time ago and was smiling back at him mischievously, though it was unclear if that was because of her story or the fact that she'd caught him staring so intensely. In an attempt to cover over his embarrassment, Bao-Dur asked quickly, "So you want me to stop calling you General because it reminds you of these stories about this man?"
Looking surprised at first, the Exile answered, a slow smile breaking across her face, "Not…exactly, Bao-Dur. When you call me General, it does make me think of those stories. But instead of that man being the General and me being the Padawan…I see me as the General and," she motioned toward the lightsaber that had only recently been added to the mass of tools on his waistband, "…well, you as the Padawan." The Zabrak stared at the lightsaber for several long seconds as he digested the implications of her words before finally fixing her with a curious gaze.
It was now Sarin's turn to cover for her embarrassment, though at that point, she wasn't sure she would ever stop blushing. Pushing herself up off the cylinder as casually as possible, she said matter-of-factly, "And that is why you should stop calling me General."
Bao-Dur watched the beautiful human as she moved toward the door, a bemused smile on his lips. Before she could get out of hearing range, he said quietly, "Of course…General," and turned back to his work. He pretended to not have seen her turn sharply back toward him, a surprised, but delighted smile on her face, and allowed himself to sink into the rhythm of his work.
Staring at the Zabrak's muscular back as he diligently resumed his work, Sarin's smile widened and she came to a decision. Perhaps he is not so much the same as I thought.