This is a drabble story arc in thirteen pairs, with the first drabble being part of the arc and the second stand-alone, third plot, fourth stand-alone, etc. Trying to develop longer plots; one drabble per letter.
Title: Obi-Wan Lets Out The Breath That He Knew That He'd Been Holding
Pairing: A/O, A/P, P/OC
Rating: G to R
Time: Clone Wars
Disclaimer: I own nothing recognizable.
Summary: Obi-Wan's term on the Council and Clone Wars experiences, mostly. Slash.
A is for Ambition
Obi-Wan Kenobi entertained ambitions, as did any being. He wanted a Council seat. With the war's progression, Council members' long-term tenure was sadly no longer so assured. He had begun to think of himself as tainted: from Dooku to Qui-Gon to himself at Melida/Daan, there existed an undeniable leaning to unhappy rebellion. Although at times he treasured his Melida/Daan memories, the issues involved seemed so very far away now that he didn't even know how he could explain himself to Anakin. He wanted to set a good example for the young man, so he aspired to the Council, taint or no.
N is for Nightly
Anakin's nightly tutoring sessions in Jedi history Obi-Wan reminisced over now and then, but particularly after he visited the creche. Looking over the cribs, playpools, and exercise trees for the occasional arboreal youngling, he could not help but wonder how Anakin's personality would have developed if Master Ali-Anann had been available to push Anakin about in a stroller or teach him to swim. Obi-Wan's storytelling and perhaps even his negotiating skills had been honed by night after night of having Anakin perched on his knee, absorbing the tales with his bright mind. Certainly Master Ali-Anann would never negotiate bedtimes.
B is for Bodacious
Obi-Wan harbored no hatreds other than flying. That process of moving too fast to think properly or appreciate one's surroundings required reaching into the Living Force and Obi-Wan didn't enjoy that. He fared poorly with atmospheric flying, tending to crash quite a bit, and as for deep space travel, forget it. Life was scarce out there in the vacuum and the cold and therefore the Force was, too. And then hyperspace ... ugh. He had occasionally envied Depa Billaba, whose seat Obi-Wan now coveted. Just before Haruun Kal, she had led a nearly planetbound life, but Obi-Wan was more bodacious than that.
R is for Roadkill
Crushed beneath a droideka's cruel wheels, the long-dead kudana colt's remaining fur rippled in the brisk breeze. Scavengers devoured its head long ago, but its husk still had dessicated long legs and small bobtail attached. Obi-Wan knelt briefly by the body on the plains of Rutan, recalling a sunlit day when Qui-Gon leapt atop a racing kudana, standing effortlessly on its broad back, gesturing for him to mount his own. Obi-Wan let his disgust with the Separatists bubble, rise to the top of his consciousness, be dispersed by the Force. Who now mourned for the loss of non-sentient life, then?
C is for Complicated? Nah.
A blinking blue light on the holocomm console drew Obi-Wan's attention immediately upon arriving home. "Message: Appointment confirmed." Obi-Wan shot over to the droid repair bay. Anakin was genuinely happy for him, Obi-Wan could tell. "It's about time," he had exclaimed, a clear joy in his voice that Obi-Wan hadn't heard for weeks now. Anakin had even reached for his Master to clasp him in his arms and boost him into a hug, but had stopped just short. He had clapped him on the shoulder instead, still grinning. Obi-Wan had grinned back, almost bouncing on his feet in uncomplicated pleasure.
S is for Sorry!
"Senator Amidala, please don't send me back to Naboo. I'm sorry to have offended you somehow." The handmaiden's blue, blue eyes pleaded unrestrainedly as her curls bobbed and her full lower lip quivered. "Tell me how to atone."
Padmé couldn't tell her, and so she lied through her teeth. "Ommané, the war has forced our government to economize, that's all." She turned away from the girl, gazing out towards the Temple. "Ellé and Motée have seniority over you," she continued. The dissembling Senator simply couldn't say that there was something about the nubile Ommané that made Padmé hum with desire.
D is for Defeat
With no galaxy-wide conflict experience, the Council had expected setbacks, but not this continuous series of defeats. The Senate waffled a bit, actually debating something weightier than funding for its Senatorial Recognition of Service Plaque Placement Policy: Rotunda versus Foyer. Obi-Wan strategized, sat in on committee meetings, felt his way through Senatorial procedures, all in the name of peace. His words seemed heeded at today's session by Senate members all the way up to the Supreme Chancellor. One planet in particular showed a slight chance for a victory, he thought as he prepared his alternate battle plan. J-A-B-I-, he began ...
O is for Opportunistic
Obi-Wan expected opportunistic Knights, but not Masters. He had thought Masters were above all that: lobbying for better quarters, perhaps a short --- very short, Master Kenobi! The Council will hardly know that my Padawan and I are gone! --- sabbatical and other plenary indulgences.
"I can't give that speech again, Obi-Wan. Four times per lifetime is plenty for any one Jedi. Can't you do it? Ten minutes! That's all I'm asking."
Obi-Wan knew Zett Jukassa was of age for The Talk. "No, Cin, I'm sorry," Obi-Wan denied Drallig firmly. "I've given The Talk to one pubescent Padawan already and that's enough."
L is for Legacy
Obi-Wan pulled his hood back as he entered The Whipping Post. A Senatorial aide had pulled him aside one past evening and pushed a white business card into his hand. "You look tense. Here."
Curious the first visit, hooked by the next, Obi-Wan nodded at one familiar face and ignored the rest of the crowd. "The usual," he muttered to the barkeep, a pleasantly discreet sort. The Togorian Terrorizer slid down his throat easily as his personal Guide pulled up a stool beside him.
Obi-Wan flashed back on Jabiim's sick legacy and nodded. "No hoods tonight," he enjoined.
I is for Inhibition
Obi-Wan discovered a new allergy one day. Each soldier received injections of anti-pollutant frozocine before returning to Ohma-D'un's ravaged surface. As the day wore on, Obi-Wan began losing his inhibitions noticeably. He snapped at Cody, pushed to the front of the line at chow, and demanded a new-issue sleeping bag from the Quartermaster. His caf had to be fresh and his armor polished. The latrines had to be placed one-half kilometer away, downwind, to avoid offense. It wasn't until dizziness struck and Anakin half-shoved, half-carried him into the medtech's tent that Obi-Wan began making loud kissy noises at Anakin.
F is for Funky
Obi-Wan smiled, ready to forgive, when his ever-punctual ex-Padawan arrived fifteen minutes past their appointment. Without a doubt, Anakin had been escorting Senator Amidala. Seeing the dreamy look on Anakin's face, Obi-Wan assumed they had enjoyed the Cotillion. When Anakin slid in next to him into the Outlander's comfy booth, Obi-Wan wondered what Anakin had been into to leave such a distinctive odor on him. "Shower broken?" Obi-Wan teased. It wasn't until the shame-faced Knight shifted farther away that Obi-Wan remembered how Qui-Gon came home smelling like that a few, a very few, times. After sex, women left their funkiness behind.
X is for Xenophobe
Not quite up to our standards. Both Anakin and Obi-Wan received this impression from the Franool. A people who had joined the Republic scant ten years ago, a small group of quarrelsome, loosely united tribes, they banded together against the Separatists well enough, the two Jedi admitted. A strong disdain for anything non-Franooli permeated their Force-presence. Today Anakin earned their respect over Obi-Wan when dealing with the Sekten, the barely-agreeing ruling body (Anakin personally thought of the group as a clique). Anakin had risen to his full height over the smallish Franool.
"Get over yourselves," he snarled, and left.
G is for Generous
Amidala's Knighthood anniversary party for Anakin had been as lavish as the Order's acknowledgement was austere. There were to be a select group of Anakin's friends, mostly Jedi, but some, such as Dex, from a wider acquaintance. Amidala spent her entire budget on food: Tatooine imports, unsophisticated though they were, and Nubian delicacies such as furry trout from Varykino. Obi-Wan glanced at her, relaxing and chatting up the reserved Jedi at their table and simply couldn't dislike her. She was generous, she was committed, she was a friend. He would accept her invitation to call her "Padmé" now, he supposed.
P is for Principled
ARC5231 spared a moment from cleaning his DC-15 to think. In a meeting this very morning, the Jedi encouraged their troopers to develop their inner selves. When most attendees had clandestinely stopped laughing, they returned to whatever prior responsibility they'd been fulfilling. ARC5231 stopped polishing the already-shiny trigger, and reflected. The General, in his unsullied cloak and freshly-issued armor, had asked them to prepare an answer for the question, "What are your principles?" and no one in the seminar could even begin. But hours later, ARC5231 had a reply. There was only one worthwhile principle, and duty was its name.
H is for Heat
Pain reveals self.
J is for Juxtaposed
Juxtaposed to the tented row upon row of geometrically aligned clone quarters were the singular tents of any Jedi, general or commander. Sometimes the flow of the Force was stronger in one direction or other; sometimes a plant or beach or cliffside hummed in a pleasing harmony. When the Force made itself known like that, Jedi had to listen. Their entire being would breathe in pleased synchrony. Upon waking, the energy boost allowed them to maximize their potential for the day. And at night, the rest gained soothed any troubled thoughts and even aching muscles. The Force was with them.
E is for Extra-Special
Obi-Wan and Anakin made love for the first time in a tent, standard issue, non-standardly askew from the regiment's rows. There was nothing romantic about the setting, no waterfall or mountains to provide inspiration, only a lone flameflower pushing up through the mud puddles nearby. Atypically, an after-lights-out communique did not break the evening's hush. Anakin contended later that the billowing extra-special breeze ending the humidity was Force-driven, but Obi-Wan remained unsure. It seemed like an incoming front to him. It was the will of the Force that the night remained uneventful, except for the main event inside the tent.
Y is for Youngling
As a councilmember, Obi-Wan visited the infirmary once weekly that he was on-planet. He gazed sympathetically at the Chalactan youngling. "Yes, Padawan, I mean Initiate Prunella?" It never failed; the girl's face split in a delighted grin. She giggled endearingly. Obi-Wan smiled back.
"C'n you scwatch wight" --- she pointed with a bandaged finger --- "back dere?"
Togorian measles, with their itchy rashes of reddish fur, plagued younglings. Her hands had been wrapped to prevent scratching. "No, I'm sorry, Prunella. Let me apply more ointment." Daubing gently, Obi-Wan wondered what it would be like to observe eager candidates and then choose.
T was for Tainted
Anakin scoffed at the very notion of Obi-Wan being tainted. "Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon was my sort-of Master for days and he hadn't any taint in him. As for Dooku, he's the exception that proves the rule, in my humble opinion. Why, going back even further, Yoda has no taint on his character, and as for whoever the old fossil was who trained him --- "
"I'm just saying that it would mean that even I might be tainted, and we both know that I'm not. So just --- kiss --- forget --- kiss --- about --- kiss --- it."
Obi-Wan occasionally let Anakin win arguments; he needed to.
Q is for Quash
Anakin was tuckered out and not in the mood for any activity tonight beyond a shower. Any activity, he shouted mentally at Obi-Wan, who was eying him with The Look at this very moment. Anakin wished that their bond engendered actual words in addition to general location and state of mind. There, Obi-Wan saw him turn away, didn't he, and still Anakin felt The Look travel from his nape to between his shoulder blades and downward. Time to quash this notion. Right. Now. He turned. Obi-Wan had reclined on the wider sleepcouch. "I'm tired," Anakin said. He felt rather martyred.
W was for Whipping
Obi-Wan turned the corner en route to Dex's. There it was: The Whipping Post, looking busier than ever. Generally, by daylight it looked nondescript; today its fresh paint and liveried Phlog bouncer bespoke greater prosperity than Obi-Wan recalled. He strolled by curiously. He hadn't been here in months. Real gold-threaded epaulettes on the bouncer's shoulders jiggled a bit as he stamped his black-booted feet, trying to keep warm. What had driven Obi-Wan to the place with occasional visits, he didn't want to remember. The war progressed favorably; Anakin rested in his arms each available night. The pressure was bearable, lately.
M is for Massive
Anakin grew to be absolutely massive. Obi-Wan could not for the life of him fathom how Padmé could --- he shut off that thought resolutely. Puffing delicately, then stertorously, Obi-Wan slid himself slowly, slowly downwards. Anakin's eyes remained shut as the young Knight centered himself, stilling all movement per Obi-Wan's request. Prepared generously as Obi-Wan had been, it still burned, a not-quite-yet pleasure that said "Welcome" as nothing else Anakin and Obi-Wan did together. Finally stuffed --- no, a tad more, ah, there now --- Obi-Wan closed his own eyes. He would allow Anakin to begin. Right now he wanted to follow, not lead.
K is for Knight
Obi-Wan fell into and out of sado-masochism quite easily. He'd misplaced his membership card in The Whipping Post and didn't notice it for weeks. When he did, it flitted through his mind that while he was happy that his career and relationship with Anakin had proceeded to their next logical levels, at some point he needed to develop his own potential more. Maybe invent a new lightsaber form or something. There was more to being a Knight, even a Councilmember, than resting on his laurels. Obi-Wan's fantasy of endless meditation on the Force, preferably in a cave, had evolved somewhat.
V is for Variegated
"Anakin, how many times have we made whoopee?"
"Answer me. It's a poll for Galaxapolitan. Completely anonymous."
"I have no idea."
"Let's see, seventeen months, approximately one dozen times per, that's --- "
"Don't forget Supairp Prime."
" --- oh, yes, it rained all week. Here. Does this look right to you?"
"I suppose. Next question?"
"'What's the strangest place you've ever made whoopee'?"
"In an upper bunk."
"Oh, that would be the boarding ramp of the transport, I think."
"I agree; the angle was just right, if you recall."
"Yes, it was ... exquisite."
"I can't enter that."
Z is for Zero-Sum Game
Obi-Wan came to the conclusion that his and Anakin's relationship was a zero-sum game. Subtracting Padmé from the equation, or subtracting himself, left him with nothing to think but how absolutely defeating this would be to everyone. Obi-Wan was not so immodest to consider himself as irreplaceable, but he did consider Anakin to be. The Chosen One, his Chosen One, needed him to advise him, and Obi-Wan would keep on keeping on. Any other way might be detrimental to the Force, if that were possible. The next time he saw Padmé, he gave her a glance and a little shrug. She shrugged back.
U is for Uneducated
The thing about primitive cultures, Obi-Wan thought one morning after three years of war, was that they got enough sleep. With lighting either inefficient or too costly to run, most such uneducated cultures slept with sundown and rose with sunup. It was no different on Billaqor. The riparian Billaqori village stirred as he stretched. Oh, yes, he'd slept well. "It'll be a two-day float down to the capital," stated the floatmaster later, snugging her raft to the dock. "Fifty credits." He'd wrecked the blasted speeder on this solo mission. Anakin would ride him about it, when they reunited on Ruhe.