I know I already have a WIP, and CfC will take precedence, but this plot bunny would not leave me alone. Mostly due to the efforts (nagging) and encouragement of two of my twitter peeps: OperaGoose and doctorcoffeegirl. As such, updates will be sporadic at best.
There is flagrant abuse of the Star Wars Universe to suit my own nefarious purposes. NoSherlock spoilers, but let's go ahead and warn for all six movies ofStar Warsand bits of the EU, just in case. Also, I feel that despite my best efforts, OOCness will be inevitable.
Title comes from the Jedi Code. Most of this fic assumes knowledge of the Star Wars verse, with heavy Wookiepedia consultation on my part.
Also, not beta'd nor britpicked, although I'm not sure the latter is relevant in this fic...
Tatooine was, in a word, dull. Sherlock loathed every one of the innumerable grains of sand that covered the planet's surface and the twin suns that took every opportunity to burn and blister his pale skin. Day in and day out, everything was exactly the same. The only feasible way off this miserable ball of dust was to enroll in the Imperial Naval Academy, yet even that opportunity was denied him.
"Absolutely not!" Uncle Anderson shouted when Sherlock brought up the possibility of enrolling once again. "I need you here, to help with the harvest."
"Those two droids you purchased today should be far more productive than I ever was. Even if they are stolen," Sherlock tacked on as an afterthought.
"Stolen?" Aunt Sally choked out.
"Yes, stolen. Judging by the carbon scoring and partial message I uncovered in the R2 unit, I would say they are the property of a diplomat currently assisting the resistance. Quite probably the one apprehended in the confrontation with the Star Destroyer that occurred over the planet mid morning yesterday. The protocol droid was not nearly as useful because of the memory wipe some twenty years ago, but the point remains."
Aunt Sally gaped. "You can't possibly..."
"The data only goes back twenty-one years, yet judging by the wear and tear on the chassis and circuits, the droid itself is a good thirteen years older. I made more difficult intuitive leaps at the age of five."
His Aunt and Uncle shot each other a look filled with fear, one Sherlock had grown used to over the years. They didn't understand him, and his deductions had always unnerved them. He just learned not to let it bother him.
"Don't Sherlock. We've talked about this countless times. You don't do that," Uncle Anderson said angrily.
"And why not?"
"It isn't right, Sherlock!" Aunt Sally shouted.
She didn't say the words, but Sherlock heard them anyway. You're not right. You've never been right. What were we thinking when we took you in?Her posture, eyes, and micro-expressions practically bellowed them at him. He tried not to let it bother him, but it did. Sherlock pushed his chair away from the table, making for the garage, the one place he would be left alone.
"Where are you going?" Uncle Anderson shouted after him.
"It looks like I'm going nowhere," Sherlock spat over his shoulder.
It was the truth – Sherlock was never anything but brutally honest with his Aunt and Uncle. It did looklike he was going nowhere. In reality, however, Sherlock was taking the two droids out in the speeder and discovering exactly what it was the R2 droid's message contained.
"Commander Watson," had been the name the well dressed, slightly plump man from the hologram had entreated for help. The only Watson Sherlock knew of was the bachelor who lived alone on the other side of the Dune Sea – far too young to have been a commander during the Clone Wars. Perhaps a relative of his was the man in question. Regardless, John was the best chance Sherlock had at solving this mystery.
And if Sherlock had happened to time his trip so that night would fall a half-hour after his arrival, that was merely coincidence. Travel after dark on Tatooine was suicide; John Watson would have to invite him to stay the night.
Sherlock couldn't explain his fascination with the man. Ever since he had first met John at the age of seven, something about the man had struck a cord within him. Sherlock wasn't sure what it was. His deep blue eyes, his bright grin, the sound of his laugh, the expression on his face when he called Sherlock "brilliant," instead of reacting with fear and distrust as all the others had – any could easily have been the culprit.
Sherlock never had the chance to interact with the man for more than scant seconds at a time, and their last encounter had been almost two years ago, but each stayed firmly in his memory. He neededto interact with John, needed to know more about the man then the few bits he'd been able to piece together.
By the time Sherlock's speeder pulled up in front of John's hut, Tatoo II is level with the horizon, and Tatoo I had already set. Before he saw the driver, the older man had been tense, his dominant left hand reaching across his body to retrieve whatever weapon he had concealed at his right hip. Sherlock could tell the moment he was close enough to be recognizable by the way John relaxed, a surprised smile breaking over his face.
"Sherlock?" he called out as the teenager jumped out of the speeder, landing effortlessly on the balls of his feet. "What are you doing here?"
"I have a droid here," he said, gesturing back at the R2 Unit still in the speeder, "who is carrying a message for a Commander Watson."
Watson gave a small start that most wouldn't have observed, and his face flickered in recognition before quickly returning to his version neutral. Interesting.
"A relative of yours?" Sherlock offered, studying the man before him intently.
Only that wasn't quite right, Sherlock realized as he considered further. The expression on John's face hadn't been one of simple recognition; it was the habitual start someone gave when hearing their own name called. It was John's frankly astounding self-control that had caused him to make the mistake initially - very few people were in tune enough with their emotions and reactions to curtail them so quickly and with such ease.
But John couldn't have been more than eighteen at the end of the Clone Wars, and he hadn't been off Tatooine in all the twelve years Sherlock had known of him. His mind raced through his memories, trying to accumulate additional data that would help him to arrive at the proper conclusion.
The last time Sherlock had seen John, nearly a year ago, he had been on his way to Toche Station to purchase some power converters for his uncle and perhaps haggle his way into some spare parts all his own. Sherlock had felt a sort of tugging at the corner of his mind, and had been struck by the urge to turn around, just in time to observe Watson's hand darting out at an impossible rate, catching a valuable vase that had only just begun to fall of a table of wares. Sherlock had always been struck by the fact that a man of his build could move with more fluid and grace than a native of Kamino. He always reached up and habitually brushed his hair behind his left ear, despite the fact that he always kept it cut short. Sherlock's eyes narrowed in on John's hands, before him now, and took note of the calluses. The pattern was similar to that developed on the hands of mercenaries who habitually gripped a blaster, but on both hands.
Fantastic reflexes, practiced daily with a fairly light two-handed weapon, used to having hair longer on the left side of his face, awarded the rank of Commander in the Clone Wars while still a teenager...
Oh. Oh. Answer found, Sherlock had a pressing question.
"How," he asked, still filled with wonder at the revelation, "did you escape the purges?"
John didn't look afraid or surprised, merely smiled at Sherlock ruefully. "I was wondering when you would work it out. A bit worried about where too, what with the way you go about announcing things at the top of your lungs the moment you figure them out."
Sherlock tried not to let his dismay show on his face. To announce that John had once been a Jedi Padawan would be a death sentence. He would never do that to the man before him.
"Bring those two droids inside, and I'll tell you about it. We should be getting to shelter anyway – the sun is about to set. You'll have to stay the night."
Sherlock's response was a wide, far from innocent grin.
John settled in one of the two chairs in his sparse dwellings, gesturing Sherlock towards the only other seat.
"Sherlock, what do you know about your family?"
"Other than that Sally and Anderson are not my blood relatives? Very little. The material of the clothes I was brought to the Donovan's in implies that my parents were from a core world. That my birth parents would choose to leave me on Tatooine, of all places, suggests that they wanted to conceal my existence."
John let out a quiet chuckle. "Of course you would have already worked most of it out. Your parents were both from Coruscant. Your mother was a very well known and respected Senator and one of the loudest protestors against James Moriarty."
"Yes. She saw the way the tide was shifting, and knew that Senator Moriarty would seize power as soon as the opportunity presented itself. Despite the numerous attempts on her life, it wasn't until the doctor's ran the standard blood tests that she and your father decided to send you away for your own protection."
The protest that none of this had anything to do with John died on Sherlock's tongue at that, his curiosity getting the better of him. "What could a blood test possibly show that would lead them to that conclusion?"
"Midi-chlorian count. The highest ever seen, in fact," John said, looking extremely impressed.
"And what is it that Midi-chlorians indicate?" Sherlock asked, disliking being left in the dark.
John said nothing, staring not at Sherlock, but seemingly through him. Sherlock was struck with that same tugging sensation he had felt at the marketplace, every instinct in his body telling him to duck now.
He did, and saw a data-pad of some sort sail over his head and into John's open hand. It wouldn't have done an extreme amount of damage, but it certainly would have been painful.
"Force sensitivity," John said simply.
"Your father, though not a Jedi, taught at the temple because of his unparalleled skill in his field. Logic, insight, deduction – everything you excel at. He knew that the Sith were reemerging, and that they were somehow involved in the Galactic conflict. He and your mother predicted that there would one day be a time when being a force-sensitive would be dangerous." John chuckled darkly. "They were much more accurate than the Council had a hope of being."
"I was close to your father. I was at his house, with your mother, when order 66 was given. Order 66 was the beginning of the Jedi Purge," he elaborated at Sherlock's confused look. "Clones turned on their commanders, and a Sith apprentice stormed the temple and murdered all the younglings. If I hadn't been on leave, hadn't been with your parents, I would have been slaughtered along with the rest." John was light years away, his eyes filled with a deep pain Sherlock hoped he never understood.
"I am very adept at cloaking my force signature – it's the one area in which my skill was and is unparalleled. It's how I've managed to survive for so long. Your father and mother asked me to protect you, so I left. I think, in reality, they were protecting me – storm troopers stormed their house and arrested them as traitors five minutes after I had left."
Another deep breath, followed by a long, controlled exhale. "Before coming here, I went looking for my master," John's fist clenched, and his teeth were gritted. "The Sith apprentice, Darth Moran, had killed the man I once respected and loved."
Sherlock would be the first to confess he was no expert in emotions, but something was not quite right. John's expression was carefully controlled, his breathing was even – there were none of the indicators Sherlock usually relied on. Yet he could tell John felt betrayed, hurt, and angry about the fate of his master.
The emotions didn't match the story John had told – he was hiding something.
Before Sherlock had the chance to inquire further, John shook his head, seemingly bringing himself out of his dark memories.
"Then I came here. I approached your Aunt and Uncle, told them what I knew about them, and asked for their permission to train you in the force. You probably don't remember – you were seven at the time. They turned me away after a great deal of shouting. I was only fourteen, still inexperienced myself, but I thought if I could teach you the little that I knew…I thought I could help keep you safe, like your parents had done for me."
Sherlock felt a painful twinge in his stomach. John's respect and attitude towards Sherlock had nothing to do with who he was, but what he was: his parent's son, a fellow force user. It hurt him in ways he didn't want to dwell to closely on.
John shot him a look, eyes narrowed in speculation. "Alright?" he asked, studying Sherlock closely.
Sherlock fought to rein his emotions in, somehow knowing if he didn't, John would sense the thoughts behind the reaction. "Fine."
John didn't look convinced, but Sherlock could tell he would let it go for now. "Let's have a look at this message then."