The Faithful and Ferocious

BY : HatefulWitch
Category: Star Wars (All) > Slash - Male/Male
Dragon prints: 529
Disclaimer: I don't own the plot, characters, or creation of Star Wars, nor do I make any money off of it.

"What does it really matter anymore?"

"How could you possibly think it doesn't matter anymore?"

"If he was able to cause any further destruction, he would have done it by now. Darth Sidious has successfully taken lordship over the galaxy now what's left of the Jedi has been chased into the shadows. This would be an ideal time for him to wreak havoc."

"The dark side of the Force doesn't work on a time limit. Come on, you know that. Decades from this very day, what if he reappears and brings with him untold death and despair?"

"What we're experiencing now is not untold death and despair?" After a moment came a deep sigh of resignation entwined with discouraged words, "He has not been seen in years. Forgive me for thinking there's a possibility he's dead."

An accompanying sigh came forth, "That's wishful thinking. I know because in my heart, I hope he's dead, too. Better dead than a deranged psychopath. But we have to be realistic. The reality is his body is inhabited by a Sith now and if Darth Vader kept anything from Anakin, I'd put my chips on his survival instinct. Just because he hasn't been out and about doesn't mean he's dead or incapable of destruction. He could be directing from behind the scenes somewhere instead of working the field. We don't know, but our wishful thinking is nothing more than wishful thinking. I've been on a lookout for another apprentice. Sidious has not claimed one. I'm sorry, Obi-Wan, I know what…you know he meant a lot to me…and I know what he meant to you, but-"

The Jedi Master turned his shadowed eyes out the multi-paned window, "No, you don't."

"I think I do, but he is no longer the person we knew. He killed children, Obi-Wan. He choked the woman carrying his own children. You fought him on the magma-riddled banks of Mustafar, you saw it. You know he is dangerous. Help me, tell me what you know. They wanted me to ask you to find him, to kill him. I know if I asked that of you, you'd oblige because that's just who you are. That's why I'm not asking you. I'm asking you to talk to me. Tell me what you know so I can volunteer to find him myself. I don't want you to be the one to put him down. Even if that monster's not Anakin, it has Anakin's body, it looks like him, it sounds like him, and I know what that would do to you."

There was a pregnant silence before the quiet query, "How will you be able to carry out such a mission any better than I could, considering how close you were to him?"

"I'm not a Jedi like you anymore. I want to take revenge on the parasite that took Skyguy from me."

Obi-Wan swallowed heavily as he turned from the dusty window, his body close to shaking as he gazed into voluminous blue eyes, "I'm sorry to disappoint you, Ahsoka, but I have absolutely no idea where he is. I maintain he may have ceased to exist. The last I saw him, he was lying on a black sand bank, screaming with all the rage of a demon that he hated me. I turned from him, took Senator Amidala to safety, and that's the end of the story."

Ahsoka bit her lips, momentarily losing Obi-Wan's stare, before leaning forward in her seat and meeting his piercing eyes again, "Here I was thinking you would have some great big secret you could tell me that would help us find Darth Vader. When I tracked you down, after Organa confirmed you were still kicking, I couldn't figure out why you had stayed here on Tatooine. Even after you told me about Luke, I was sitting here trying to figure out why you didn't just procure his safety with his family then return to the front lines. But I see it now. I see why you're still here."

When only the stifling silence was left hanging in the air, Obi-Wan dared, "Why am I still here?"

"When he left the light, Anakin didn't just take his bad attitude with him, he took your will to fight."

Ahsoka didn't expect her former brother-in-arms to validate her statement in a positive or negative fashion as she stood from her seat. She strode to where he was motionlessly standing and placed a fleeting hand on his shoulder. She looked up at Obi-Wan, though he did not look down to meet her gaze, then turned and headed towards the door.

"May the Force be with you, Master Obi-Wan."

Before he could even simulate a response, the door was closing behind Anakin's old padawan.

::::

Almost as soon as Ahsoka settled into her CR90 corvette and turned on the hypertransceiver, a voice cancelled out the static, "Please, tell me you have some chatty soup."

"Kanan, did you really sit on the wire until I got back?" The former Jedi slumped into the seat of her ship and audibly sighed, "Obi-Wan is alive if that counts as state-of-the-art skinny."

"Oh, Ahsoka, we knew he was alive. Did you hound out where Vader is blackholing?"

"No," she rolled her eyes in annoyance at the demanding tone on the other end of the radio.

"But O-"

"Ahsoka out," the Togrutan curtly interjected before tapping off the transceiver, quickly adding on afterwards, "and fuck you."

It was a good thing she was the only one who had the moxie to face Obi-Wan: he would not have responded well to any amount of her rebel comrades' strong-arm tactics. After sitting in thought for a few moments, she switched the power back on her subspace comm and readjusted the frequency. With a bit of tuning and some weird feedback she didn't care for, she finally heard a soft hissing noise. Leaning forward in her seat, Ahsoka drawled, "R5, do you copy?"

There was still a high-pitched electrical whine for a few moments before an alert voice resonated through the ship's sound system, "This is R5, I copy."

A smile bedecked her lips, "Hey, it's Commander TO."

There was still unpleasant feedback as his laughter fed through, "You doing alright, Commander?"

She smiled to herself, "Yeah, I'm queen of the coronas. How are you?"

"Scouting out as many side-lined posts as I can for you. Did you need me to head somewhere specific?" the clone trooper captain speculated.

"No, no, all the gen you've been sending has been primo. I just…I didn't know who else…I could talk to," she admitted reluctantly as she crossed her arms and tilted her head back.

Rex hummed in vexation, "Now that is a tone doesn't bode well for anybody. Have you found something heavy?"

After weighing whether or not she should continue, the space warrior eventually responded, "Well, it's something I always knew on some level, but I think I really see the size of it now. It's not exactly information that will help us take down the Big Nasty."

"Then what dish you got?" he asked confusedly.

"Obi-Wan is on the sunny rock."

Rex paused, running the message through his head multiple times to make sure he wasn't misunderstanding then incredulously charged, "I thought you said what you found wouldn't help us take down the Big Nasty? This is great news! With him back in the-"

"You don't understand. Obi-Wan is about to run a few starships short of a fleet. Time has not been kind to him."

"Oh, I see."

"No, you don't. It wasn't the shitfight that defeated him. It was Anakin. What happened to him- what we let happen to him."

"Stop right there," Rex interrupted, "neither you or General Kenobi allowed anything to happen to General Skywalker. His fate was never in either one of your hands, lil' one. It wasn't in any of our hands."

"You're right. It doesn't always feel like it, but you're right. He was my master though." Her voice lowered, "He was my friend, my family. I can still remember him handing me back my sticks and saying, go get that kung, Snips. Sometimes I feel like I should have known what was about to happen. Even though we were apart, I should have felt it. I was selfish. I got so caught up-"

"You aren't omniscient or omnipotent. Never forget it."

Ahsoka leaned back into her chair, "How could I? It's easier to forget I wasn't the only one shot in the heart…Obi-Wan loved him."

"I don't…I don't understand."

She couldn't contain the laughter at her friend's mystified statement, "What's there to understand?"

"Didn't think they could do that," he imprecisely referred to all Jedi.

"That doesn't mean much in the grand scheme of things," she continued to snicker quietly. "You can't prevent or stop yourself from loving someone just because you're not supposed to. Obi-Wan isn't an easy read in even the vaguest terms, but he displayed and acted on feelings of love many times when it came to Anakin. We could sit here for rotation after rotation listing off examples. I don't know if anyone else knew how he felt but to me it was more noticeable than a flare star.

"Obi-Wan was much more attentive to and protective of Anakin than he was anyone else. He was happier when they were together. I'd even catch him giving my master affectionate eyes all the time. Nobody else ever seemed to notice and I'm sure if they did, they mistook it as a brotherly thing. But the ultimate truth is Anakin was Obi-Wan's holy sun and sacred moon." She shook her head although no one could see it, "If his behavior since the shitfight is anything to go by, in spite of all that has happened, that's still the case. The ill-advised, hopeless case."

"So, he hasn't been around because of a broken heart?" Rex clarified with palpable sympathy marking his voice.

"That's my firm belief. You probably never knew, but Anakin was positively, heart and soul, over the supermoon in love with Obi-Wan- regardless of anything indicating otherwise. It's another one of those things I could take a few rotations to explain," she miserably laughed. "I wish I could bring him back to Obi-Wan, but the muscles of love can't fend off eclipses any more than they can move planets."

The captain laughed confoundedly, "You're right, I was in the absolute dark on all of that, especially the last part. It may not come as a surprise I never considered how General Kenobi would feel after everything. Which honestly comes from ignorance. I really didn't know him. I suppose I wasn't around him enough to know him, not on a core level. He never lost the cool, aloof demeanor in my presence. I guess I just never really thought of him having emotions, never was affected by much. Guess it was easy to forget General Kenobi is human and not…I don't know, a universal life force or something."

With laughter ringing in his ears, Rex admitted, "It's really the only reason the love between him and General Skywalker makes any sense. General Skywalker was wild while General Kenobi was tranquil. It's like light and dark, peace and war. Perfect balance. Looking back, General Kenobi was the only one that was ever able to calm General Skywalker down, no matter how worked up he was." Unsure of what to follow up his rant with, Rex stated the only thing he was sure of, "Anyway, I suppose you'll have to find the Parasite without General Kenobi's aid."

Ahsoka sat upright in the seat of her corvette then began manually inputting her next coordinates, "Yes, I will."

"And when you do find him?"

"If there is any hope Anakin is savable, and that's why we haven't seen him, then I will do all I can to save him. If he is no more, I will run the Parasite through. For the ones we lost, for Obi-Wan, and for Anakin."

Before blast off, a dire warning sounded through the crackling static of the sound system, "Don't expect him to be the same man as before, Commander."

::::

After Ahsoka left his home within the Jundland Wastes, Obi-Wan couldn't stop pacing. Meditation had crossed his mind, but he quickly discarded the idea. He simply couldn't participate in the inert task of it anymore. All he could ever manage to focus on was an all-consuming, familiar sorrow that bled from every pore in his skin and suffocated him, choking him until he had to flee from it. He knew he would never be able to meditate that horrid feeling away. He had tried many times in the past and failed repeatedly. The only alleviation of any variety he could find was in ethanol and distraction.

He didn't use his lightsaber anymore. Of course, it wasn't safe to use out in the open now any remaining Jedi were on a seek-and-destroy list, but he didn't even practice within the privacy of his own home. It revived a life he needed to leave buried deep in the soil.

Without lightsaber or meditative exercises, he was left to his manic devices. He often walked, paced, or ran during distress. Only through the mindless motion of his feet and the frenetic energy it supplied his mind, which usually made him unable to focus on one thing, was he able to find a modicum of peace. The insistent sun usually sunk below the horizon long before he tired himself out and despite the groan in his knees and back, he often kept moving. Even without appearances from Ahsoka, he seemed to always spend his evenings in this method. Wear himself down until he nearly passed out, do anything he could to avoid thinking about the last five years of his life. But not even Obi-Wan Kenobi could control the contents of his subconscious.

When he did eventually lay down at night, he would be visited by the haunts of the past. Tormented by dead younglings, severed limbs, screams, burning flesh, amber eyes swathed by a luminous crimson halo. Then he'd awaken from his slumber with a dying gasp on his lips and end up with a glass of red dwarf in his hand.

Tonight, with all the direct mentions of his wayward best friend, was especially trying. He paced well past sundown, but it wasn't enough to clear his head. With only a few hours before morning, he ran aimlessly through the night. Across the bluff, to the Western Dune Sea and back, repeat, repeat, repeat. The constant motion helped to fully distract him from the torture of contemplation. The sun was on the rise by the time he collapsed on his unmade bed, his body and mind thoroughly exhausted. Sleep swept over him before he knew his eyes were closed.

However, his relief was short-lived.

He was visited by those dreadful, odious eyes, that twisted mouth, the blood. Heat. Metal. I hate you!

He smeared the sweat from his brow as he awoke. Rolling over to the edge of the bed, he didn't bother with a glass as he hoisted the bottle of red dwarf to his lips. Swig after swig trundled down his throat until the bottle was empty.

After a few moments, he began to nod off again, a transitory thought bubbling to his lips, "You're still alive, Anakin."



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