Ahsoka doesn't know if she made the right decision when she left the Jedi Order. Maybe an old friend can help her out. Sister one shot to Why, set soon after the Season Five finale.
Ahsoka knew Anakin struggled with his commitment to the Jedi Order. She knew he was with—or even married to—Senator Amidala. But even she didn't quite know what she meant by those words.
What did Anakin think she meant by them?
Her leaving would only make him doubt the Jedi Council even more, if that was possible. He constantly griped and complained about missions they assigned or desicions they made, and the last thing she wanted to do was drive the Chosen One off the path he'd been destined to follow for hundreds—if not thousands—of years.
Or, ultimately, screw up the balance of the Force.
Ahsoka flipped onto her stomach, sliding a hand under her pillow to check if the opposite side was dry yet. It was still damp with her tears. She let out a groan and rolled over. As thankful as she was that Padmé was letting her stay in a spare room, the large bed only gave her more room to toss and turn.
Well, I don't think I'm going to go to sleep anytime soon. Ahsoka sat up and got out of bed, taking the duvet with her. Quietly, she left the room and slid into the hallway, finding her way into the darkened sitting-room by more way of the Force than sight.
A boom of thunder shattered the penthouse's silence as she flopped on the sofa, signaling the transformation of the light rain that had been gently falling over Coruscant the past few hours into something much more violent.
She started, but simply pulled the duvet closer around her. As recently as Mortis thunderstorms made her nervous, but now all that fear seemed to have drained away. And she saw the chaos of water and wind and noise and jagged slashes of light across the sky held only at bay by the walls as one thing and one thing only: a reflection of how she felt.
"Can't sleep?" Footsteps sounded behind her.
"Not really," Ahsoka said, shrugging as Padmé moved from the doorway and came around the back of the sofa to sit next to her. "Did I wake you?"
"The rain did." Padmé cast an annoyed look upwards. "It's been storming a great deal lately, but to be honest this is the most violent storm yet."
"I wouldn't know. Rain doesn't really reach the Underworld." Ahsoka grinned, though not happily.
"Ah," Padmé nodded, slowly, pushing a section of brown hair out of her eyes. "Ahsoka… does your Master know you're here?"
Ahsoka's eyes darted towards the senator, her smile quickly dissolving. "Anakin isn't my Master anymore."
Padmé blinked. "…the Council reassigned you?"
"No, I left." As simple as those two words were, they made Ahsoka feel like she had just torn out the first several hundred pages of a book and burned them, leaving only the last one and using it as the beginning of a new, horrible story. A story in which she didn't know herself and everything that could go wrong would go wrong.
Her eyes wandered again to the window, just as lightning flashed. She sighed loudly as the Jedi Temple was revealed for a moment, before vanishing back into the night.
"Here, I made tea—Ansionian." Padmé sat down again, this time with two mugs in hand.
I didn't even see her go. Ahsoka nodded a 'thank you' as Padmé handed her one of the mugs. Carefully, she took a sip of the tea. It was way cooler than she would have normally liked, but the fact that it made the space behind her nose burn made up for that.
"Why?" Padmé broke the comfortable silence the two had fallen into as gently as she could. "Why did you leave, Ahsoka?"
Ahsoka almost didn't want to answer, but the word fell from her mouth before she knew it: "Because." Any other time that would have lead into a long winded rant about how unfair the Council was, how Tarkin had been so willing to put her to death even after she'd saved his life at the Citadel and how Barriss had betrayed their entire friendship. But this wasn't any other time. "Just… because. I had to. I needed to."
Sometimes, if she was alone for too long, she'd wonder if maybe it was just all a dream. And if soon, she would wake up and find that she had dozed off in the transport that fateful day she was assigned to Anakin Skywalker, waiting for her and the clones to be given the green light to land on Christophsis. Maybe she would be given another chance, a chance to fix all the mistakes she'd made, to keep the entire last few weeks from even happening. Of course, it wasn't a dream—just reality going about its usual nightmarish way.
"I can't say I know exactly how you feel, but I understand." Padmé paused as if in thought. "I was Queen of Naboo for eight years. One of the first laws I passed was that monarchs could only stay in office for that long, because before then terms were indefinite and that… didn't really work out so well." She laughed softly. "Apparently I did a good job, because at the end of those eight years most of the populace was asking for the law to be repealed. I declined and became a senator. But it was not easy. I know how hard it is to give up what you're used to, especially when you're young."
Ahsoka watched steam curl up from her tea, hardness in her unfocused gaze. "…with all due respect, I'm not a little kid, Senator Amidala."
"Perhaps, Miss Tano," Padmé quipped back sadly, making fun of her guest's formality. "But it's okay for you to feel like one." Done with her tea and not having much more to say, she rose, placing a hand on Ahsoka's shoulder. "It gets better. I promise." With that, she returned to bed.
Ahsoka felt a pang in her chest as she watched the young woman go. She remembered what happened the last time someone had promised her something: I'll never let anyone hurt you, Ahsoka, never. Anakin's words were so laughably empty now it was painful, as she was more hurt than she'd ever been.
Barely able to keep her eyes open, she turned over and stretched out lengthwise on the sofa, pulling the duvet up over her head as faint rays of silvery sunlight came from behind the clouds and began to peek through the windows.
"Tomorrow's a new day," she muttered tiredly to herself as she slipped asleep.
And hopefully, it would be a better one.
This is definitely slower than Why? and isn't quite a snapshot—as Ahsoka moved from that guest room to the sitting room—but I enjoyed writing it. Thank you for reading, and remember, reviews are great motivation. ;)