The nine year old eagerly slid down the sand dune, elated. Jogging to keep up with the tall jedi, Anakin thought back on the past few days. He had met a Jedi! A real Jedi master! And now he was actually leaving this sandy rock to become a Jedi! This was what he had always dreamed of! Of course, he was sad to have to leave his mom behind, but he would come back to free her someday. And then to top it all off, he had met the prettiest girl he had ever seen, ever! Yes, life was good.
The sudden shout of "Anakin, Drop!" brought him back to his senses.
When the horned creature with the red laser-sword jumped off the speeder and began to attack Qui-Gon, all Anakin wanted to do was help him, but he had more sense than that.
Anakin dashed up the ramp to the space cruiser, searching for a crew member to give the lift off orders to. As he scanned the entryway he spotted the back of a female through one of the side doors. He supposed this was one of the other handmaidens that Padme had told him about. He shouted and she turned.
Barely glancing at her, he shouted "Qui-Gons being attacked, he says to take off!"
Expecting a parade of questions, he was surprised when she closed her eyes, then gasped, turned and ran down the hallway. A moment later Anakin felt the ship vibrate. His worry about Qui-Gon overriding his excitement at actually being on a real space cruiser taking off into space.
He knelt down, watching the ground move below the open walkway. Anxiety filling him. Relief flooded him as a moment later the Jedi master jumped into the ship, and almost instantaneously they were off into space.
"Are you alright?" Anakin asked concerned
Qui-Gon smiled at the little boy. "I would be lying if I said I wasn't thrown off guard a lit-"
"Master!" Qui-Gon looked up and smiled at the newcomer.
It was the girl from earlier. Only this time Anakin was seeing her up close. He knew instantly that this girl was no handmaiden. She held herself differently, not he regal way Padme had presented herself. And this girl was wearing an odd tunic, it seemed to be some sort of uniform. On her waist was a Laser-sword, just like Qui-Gons! The facts all pointed towards this girl also being a Jedi.
But the thing that Anakin noticed the most was, this girl was Beautiful!
Different than Padme. Padme was pretty, the prettiest girl in the galaxy, he had thought up until this moment, but she was always dressed in beautifully expensive clothes with a fancy hairstyle and flaunted her dignified manners and styles. Padme was in almost every way what he imagined a princess from the stories he'd heard from the deep space pilots to be.
He had found Padme exciting and kind, but when she had stayed with them, he had noticed his mothers reaction. His mother had obviously liked Padme, but Anakin could read his mothers emotions well, and knew that Padme's styles, and clothing, even the way she talked, basically her entire demenor, had made his mother feel inferior. That was something that had bugged him deeply. He knew Padme didn't mean anything by it, probably didn't even know she was doing it, but it still was there, and it still bothered him.
This girl was different. She wore no make up, but her pale face didn't need it. Her hair was pulled back, but instead of a majestic thing that looked as though it had taken hours, her long wavy ginger locks were simply pulled back into an elastic band. But above all were her eyes. Anakin had never seen eyes such a color. Deep green blue, such a color was always how Anakin imagined the sea to be.
Anakin vaguely realized the two Jedi were continuing their conversation, and he had been staring at this new angel with his mouth open for quite some time. He felt his face flush red.
As soon as she was assured that the older Jedi was fine, she turned her big blue eyes onto him and smiled. As a nine year old, Anankin didn't know much about the area of women and relationships, or really anything even somewhat related. But he did know one thing. He liked it when this angel smiled at him and would do anything to make it happen again.
"Anakin, this is my apprentice, Obi" Qui-gon's voice cut through Anakin's stunned nine year old thoughts.
"Obi, this is Anakin Skywalker. He won us the parts for the ship." Something in this sentence made her eyes flicker back to Qui-gon annoyance and irritation obvious in them. However, a moment later it was gone, and Anakin almost thought he had imagined it, but knew he hadn't.
"Its wonderful to finally meet you Anakin." Obi said smiling brightly. Anakin noted that she had a different accent than any of the others, similar to Qui-gon's. He assumed it was a core accent. He liked it, to the nine year old brain it made her voice seem more powerful, as though what she said actually mattered.
"You're a Jedi too?" Anakin asked eagerly and when she smiled larger and nodded he added "awesome"
Obi laughed. Not the tinkling laughter that many girls he knew had. But a true, honest laugh. It conveyed exactly how she felt.
"Obi, Why don't you take Anakin down and get him cleaned up, settled in, and get him some food. I need to speak with the queen's security and then comm the council." Qui-gon asked.
"Of course!" Obi said brightly straightening up. But as Qui-gon stood and walked down one of the corridors, Obi threw him a very annoyed look.
Anakin felt his heart sink. Does she really not want to be around me?
Something of his depression must have shown on his face because Obi looked down at him in concern and asked "Are you upset about something Anakin?"
He didn't want to sound rude or petty, so he shook his head and stared at the floor. However, Anakin would soon learn that he couldn't hide his feelings from a Jedi.
She knelt down and put a hand on his arm, looking questioningly at him.
Anakin wanted to be strong, to prove, to her and to himself, how mature he could be, despite being only nine. But then she looked at him with those eyes, Ocean eyes, he would later call them. And with those eyes, Anakin felt as though she was reading his soul, or maybe just his feelings. It was overwhelming for a nine year old, who did not quite realize he was in love yet.
Anakin spilled his worries quietly "Are you upset at having to take care of me?" Peeking up at her, she looked shocked.
"Of course not Anakin!" She sounded honestly surprised "Why would you think that?"
"well.." Now feeling slightly embarrassed he looked at his worn brown sand shoes. "When you were talking to Qui-gon, you seemed annoyed, about something."
"You noticed that?"
At the amused tone of her voice, Anakin looked up. He nodded.
She chuckled. "I'm sorry Anakin, I forgot how force sensitive you are."
Anakin was starting to get confused.
She continued. "I'm not annoyed with you, I'm slightly annoyed with Qui-gon, but thats nothing for you to be concerned with."
"It has to do with me."Anakin pushed.
Obi sighed. "You have to understand Anakin, I'm not someone who takes unnecessary risks." She paused obviously trying to figure out the best wording. "When Qui-gon bet on that race, he chanced everything. Everything of worth we had with us, plus things we don't really have, The success of a mission, the safety and trust of a Queen and her people, The well being of a planet. But most especially the life of a local boy."
Anakin was slightly stunned. He had not realized how much had actually been riding on his winning the race. He responded with the only thing he could think of.
She smiled. "I know, but Qui-gon is the adult, he should have known better." As she stood Anakin heard her mutter 'especially since gambling is unbecoming a Jedi.'
"In fact" She continued "I want to thank you. It was your superb piloting skills that saved this mission."
Anakin grinned, pleased. "You can call me Ani!"
She smiled back. "Well then Ani, lets go get you settled!"
She stood and reached down, offering her hand. Gladly Ani accepted and she led him down another long corridor of the cruiser.
AN: Hey people! This idea flitted across my brain one day, and it wouldn't go away. It thought it might be a really overdone idea, but I looked it up and could find barely any, so I decided to write a story of how it would change Anakin. I don't know how often I can update, but I will as soon as I can get the next Chapter written!
Important Note! Obi is younger than canon, about 17. Also being female will change some of Obi-wans basic personality traits. certainly not all, not even most, but Obi will be more compassionate than Obi-wan is, although she will still be a strict rule follower. This is important!
Please, please please review! Reviews feed the inspiration machine!