Title: TPM Tatooine Rewrite: Through Glass
Archive: Ask me first, just so I know where it's going.
Rating: A strong T. Warnings where needed; Obi gets into a spot of trouble here and there. And there's language, too, but nothing major. Non-slash. It's also kinda cheesy, but whatever. The whole podrace thing was the personification of cheesy, so allow me my dream sequences and clichés, lol.
Disclaimer: Star Wars and everything recognizably so belongs to George Lucas; the story is mine. I play with Obi because I love him, but I'm not making any money off this little trip into a galaxy far, far away.
Obi-torture with resultant Qui-angst: Heavy. I think no tissue warnings, though.
Revised: 08/06 … 08/09 ... holy hell ... what happened to the last seven years? Revised again 06/11, just cleaned it up and added the scene breaks that for some reason keep disappearing.
Synopsis: What if Qui-Gon's grand podrace plan did fail? Obi-Wan steps into the gap to fulfill his Master's debt, but the young Jedi's mettle is about to be severely tested when he gets more than he or Qui-Gon bargained for …
prologue: whenever you gamble, eventually you lose
Against the brilliant reddish backdrop of Tatooine's setting suns, a lone man stood hunched over in the now empty arena. The stands had been duly vacated by cheering, growling, and/or devastated fans hours ago, and now he was the only one left in the huge stone structure as the bloody suns slowly sank beneath the desertscape.
His expression was slack and dull, and totally devoid of hope; from one so intricately, so joyously and so exuberantly embracing of and embraced by the Living Force, the total lack of energy – of life – from the man was utterly disconcerting.
The evening desert winds teased at long strands of silver-flecked mahogany hair as hooded ice blue eyes surveyed the horizon listlessly. It truly was a beautiful sunset, all reds and purples and greys that gently encroached upon blues as it receded to make way for the black of night, and though the man himself had no eyes this evening for such splendor, he knew with little doubt one who would, one who always did: it was a sunset that he was sure his apprentice would be watching from a solitary place some distance away in the queen's wounded ship.
Qui-Gon Jinn smiled at the thought. His world may have just encountered a sudden, incredulously unbelievable upheaval, but there were yet some things he was certain of. His apprentice was one of them.
Qui-Gon's small smile faded as unwanted but necessary thoughts intruded into his consciousness. He must fulfill his initial duty and find some way to deliver the queen and her retinue safely to Coruscant …
… but his word could not be broken, the wager could not go unfulfilled. Watto would need to be reimbursed.
The tall Jedi's head bowed under the incredible weight of his failure. He had risked everything on Anakin winning the podrace, and the boy had lost. Tomorrow he would return to the ship and report the news to the queen, but for tonight, he simply stood, alone, in the empty arena and watched the stars come out.
That night, in the desert, not too far away …
Breathing hard, Obi-Wan Kenobi bolted awake into a sitting position, the warm blankets pooling around his narrow waist as he braced himself upright with his hands. Beads of sweat that chilled rapidly in the cool, cycled air of his assigned quarters slid down his strong jawline and across his chest, and his wide blue-grey eyes surveyed the room with the rapidity of someone frightened nearly out of their mind without really knowing the reason why.
It was all a dream, he soothed himself warily, trying to slow the rush of breath escaping his heaving chest, it was only a dream, Kenobi. Qui-Gon's here. Qui-Gon's fine.
Obi-Wan was startled to find that he was trembling and drew his legs up to his chest, rocking gently and resting his weary head on his knees.
It was a nightmare. It was only a dream, he repeated to himself as he rocked slowly, calming his breathing. Everything's fine. You're fine, Qui-Gon's fine – even Jar-Jar's fine. Everybody's fine. Qui-Gon's plan will have worked. It had to have worked.
And Obi-Wan had to believe that Qui-Gon's plan had worked, that the slave boy had won the race; otherwise, the images that had startled Obi-Wan into awareness weren't really a nightmare … and he was in trouble.
Obi-Wan knew he wouldn't sleep any more this night and that even trying was pointless. He kicked off the covers and pulled on his breeches, and then stretched, a luxurious slow stretch that felt exquisite to his cramped frame. He immediately felt better though the images that had assailed him in his nightmares continued to haunt his mind.
Why did I choose Tatooine?
The words passed through his mind for what he was sure was the millionth time since he'd sat in that damned chair at that damned desk and uttered the simple phrase that had damned him:
"'Here, Master: Tatooine.'"
He was angry, and he really had no one to blame but himself. And Qui-Gon, for listening to him.
Obi-Wan slid his arms into his under tunic and with a thought toward the indigenous residents of Tatooine – and the ogle-eyed handmaidens that seemed to be prowling around every corner of this too-small vessel, no matter what the hour – he slung his belt with attached lightsaber over his shoulder before grabbing his robe. Suddenly the interior of the Nubian ship was making him very claustrophobic. And … he had to say it …
"I have a bad feeling about this," he murmured to the empty cabin.