Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by George Lucas. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Written for darth_eldritch over on LJ, who helped me through a hard time! I offered to write something, and darth_eldritch asked for: "Maybe what Obi-Wan felt some time later after fighting and killing Darth Maul, who Maul must have been?" So I hope I've done the prompt justice, and I hope you like the piece!
the sith killer
The title is by no means official – it's a whispered phrase only, flitting through the Temple like a wasp trapped in a room with a single occupant who is deathly allergic to the sting. It should fill Obi-Wan with pride – a Padawan, defeating a legendary (and extinct) foe of immense power even when faced with imminent death and having just lost his Master.
It makes him feel sick.
Obi-Wan has killed before, but the difference between those kills and this one is that this one got him promoted. Now he's a full Jedi Knight with a precocious Padawan who was supposed to be Qui-Gon's charge, and people look at him in wonder and pity instead of sympathy.
"How are you feeling?" Bant is the only one to ask him, and he lies and says that he's fine and coping.
The truth is, he is in no fit state to train Anakin Skywalker, the alleged Chosen One, nine years old and a former slave. They make a rather awkward pair: the emotional boy too old to be a Jedi, and the Knight who is being applauded for being a murderer.
They say he found peace and centred himself before he sliced the creature with red and black skin in half – fury and rage and a hard slash at its waist – then came to terms with Qui-Gon's death and accepted his ascension to the Force – please don't leave me what am I supposed to do Master please have you no last words for me – so if that's what the Council says then he has no choice but to believe it.
He meditates and he finds questions, not peace.
He wonders if the creature that murdered Qui-Gon – the creature he murdered – had a name. A family, or a lover, or friends. A Master. Cultural or species practices he conformed to. A home.
Perhaps, Obi-Wan thinks as he oversees Anakin's training, I should have kept him alive for interrogation.
The Council agrees that Obi-Wan found peace as he clung to the side of that pit, but if he had truly found peace he wouldn't have cut the Zabrak in half using a technique frowned upon for its Sith-like nature.
You have to be angry to kill a being with sai tok, he thinks. Vengeful.
And he doesn't know if he regrets the Zabrak's death or wishes he could do it all over again.
He meditates again and hides away that he is a Sith Killer in more than just a distasteful nickname. He is in no fit state to train Anakin, but he promised Qui-Gon and the Council thinks he can do this. So Obi-Wan becomes the man he thinks he has to be to honour Qui-Gon and turn Anakin into a proper Jedi, but he doesn't let go of the memory of slicing through the Sith's torso. It's a reminder, he thinks – to remind him to not let his emotions take control.
There is no emotion, after all.