Title: Sometimes it Takes a Year
Fandom: Star Wars
Pairing: Obi/Qui eventually
Disclaimer: Star Wars is George Lucas' baby. I make no money from this, it's just a fanfic. Tala, however, is all mine.
Summary: Some of the ups, downs, and changes during one year of Obi-Wan's life
3- Year in the life
6- USE ALL: clock, late, haze, rain, "until your fever's gone."
7- USE ALL: taking a photograph, accidentally in love, forgetting one's place
9- USE 3: needing to sneeze while watching a movie in a movie theater, writing in a journal, getting a new pet, finding something assumed lost, doctors make the worst patients, role reversals - the patient takes over as the doctor
10- USE 2: visiting a friend, forgetting an important event, singing in the rain, sneezing at the wrong time, trying to hide an illness
11- USE 2: getting sick in an unfamiliar environment, running away to avoid seeing a doctor, having fever induced dreams, character feels lonely when sick, character misses a rendez-vous due to sleeping in.
"Come on everybody, bunch up there."
Obi-Wan inched to the side, leaning against Bant as Nella leaned up against him. They were in the second row together, kneeling. Those in front sat and those behind stood. They all faced forward, smiling and anxious for the picture to be taken.
"Good. On the count of three. One... two... smile... three!"
Smiling along with the rest was Obi-Wan, but his smile was fleeting. As soon as the shutter button was depressed the flash light lit. Obi-Wan's eyes caught the brightness and it tickled his nose. Immediately his head snapped downward with a sneeze. "ihhh-Chishhh!" He did not hear the click of the camera for his sneezes, but he did hear the groans of his agemates.
"All right," Master Allanar said, lowering the camera and smiling. "We're going to try that again because Padawan Kenobi sneezed." She smiled at Obi-Wan with a look of understanding, and he did not feel so badly.
And this time he kept his eyes tightly closed while Master Allanar counted to three again. He could hear a small click this time that indicated the flash was on, and he opened his eyes just before the second click that was the picture being snapped. This time he did not sneeze, but he did smile. This time the photo was perfect.
"Yes," said Master Allanar, nodding approvingly. "This one's a keeper."
* * *
"So, my young one, did you get everything you wanted for the holidays?" Qui-Gon asked, pushing up his sleeves and settling on the sofa. He looked out over the floor in front of the sofa upon which was scattered boxes, wrappings, and ribbons which had held nearly a dozen presents.
Obi-Wan sat in the middle, surrounded by it all. He looked back at his master and nodded. "And you, Master?"
Qui-Gon nodded. "I am afraid I received too much, both wanted and un." He referred, of course, to the furball hiding beneath his bed in the bedroom. It had been named Clarien, but when Qui-Gon took her to the animal shelter there was no telling what she would be renamed by whomever took her in as a pet. It was with great regret that he would have to give her up in a few days, when Mace had so thoughtfully procured her for him as a gift. But here mere presence made his nose tickle and his eyes itch, and he could not sleep on the sofa every night for the rest of his life.
Nonetheless, she had been a very thoughtful present upon Mace's return from his mission in the Minar Nebula. She had been found motherless and homeless, wading in mud and covered in blood. She had nearly been overlooked and thought dead, but Mace had sensed her and could tell she was alive. He brought her back and nursed her towards health, but she still had a long way to go. And Qui-Gon, with his kindness towards animals, was the right man for that task.
At least, he would have been if not for his allergy. He had spent the morning sniffling and disappearing to the bathroom every few moments to give in to sneezes. It had not been the way he would have chosen to celebrate the holiday, but it had provided his padawan with a source of amusement, and he liked to hear the sound of Obi-Wan laughing.
"Perhaps you would be good enough to put the gifts away before joining me for lunch?" He sniffled and rubbed his nose with his handkerchief. "And perhaps you could get me a few more hankies while you're at it? My nose has not yet completely stopped tickling."
"Yes, Master." Obi-Wan gathered together the wrappings for trash, and then carefully collected the presents in his arms.
Qui-Gon waited for his padawan learner to disappear into the bedroom before he hunched over, pressing his handkerchief over nose and mouth. "huhhh-UhfShuhhh! UhhhChuhhh! HuhhhKShuhhh!" He rubbed his nose dry and coughed. His eyes burned and watered, and he considered a shower to help with this. But he was hungry as well.
He stood, tucking away his handkerchief, and headed over to the kitchen area. There was a feast that evening, but they would need lunch to tide them over until then. Qui-Gon perused the contents of the fridge, then pulled out the makings of a salad. He went for a knife but pulled back a step from the drawer. "hahhh-Chhooo!" He sniffed hard and shook his head. He wondered how long it would take this feeling to go away.
"Here." Obi-Wan stuffed a clean handkerchief into his hand and put a cool cloth against his eyes. "Go sit down and rest. I will prepare lunch for us."
Qui-Gon nodded and held the cloth in place as he sensed his way to the sofa. He sat down and rested while listening to Obi-Wan make lunch. "Be certain to wash the vegetables," Qui-Gon called over to him.
"Yes, Master." Obi-Wan turned on the faucet so Qui-Gon would know he understood.
"Do not cut yourself while chopping the vegetables," Qui-Gon called again, not seconds later.
"Yes, Master." Obi-Wan said, taking care to leave a safe distance between his fingers and the knife.
"And be sure to... to... hahhh-Chooo! Huhh-Shmfffff!"
Obi-Wan smiled. "I can make a salad, Master, so let me concentrate on doing so. You should just rest and concentrate on not sneezing so much. You sound terrible."
Qui-Gon chuckled and nodded. He blew his nose into his handkerchief and lay back across the sofa with the cool cloth against his eyes. "Call me when lunch is ready, Padawan."
I received this journal as a present from my master this morning, along with a holo-game I had asked for and books of study I did not ask for but will enjoy nonetheless. Qui-Gon wishes me to use this to record my thoughts and daily accomplishments. He says it will do my hand good to practice my writing, because not all planets we visit use datapads for such. And he says that one day I will enjoy looking back upon the pages of my memories. And while I do enjoy my days as a padawan learner under him, I cannot imagine a reason I would want to relive them as a knight. He says one day I may feel differently when I have a padawan of my own. So I will try my best to keep this journal for my master's sake and that of my future padawan. I have never had much success with such things in the past, which is not to say I have not tried in the past, but I will give it a year. If I still enjoy it after that time, I will continue.
Today was the holiday feast, which I spent at my master's side, for the most part. I do not understand why he does not dance at such events. I have seen him do so while we are away on missions and he is quite graceful even for his size. He even seems to enjoy dancing. But he does not do it during temple celebrations. I think today his excuse was the quality of the day he spent with me.
Our morning opening presents was fine, until Master Windu brought by an animal for Master Qui-Gon to keep as a pet. It most resembled a puppy, with its large feet and even larger ears. But it purred and hopped as well and had no tail. We named it Clarien, just so that we would have something to call it. But we are taking it to the temple shelter once the holiday week is over because Clarien makes my master sneeze terribly. I spent all day looking after him. And when my master is sneezy, it truly is an all day sort of affair. I suppose the same can be said for when I am ailing and he takes care of me. But he is so much better at that than I. His caring seems effortless, whereas I require him to tell me when he needs a fresh hanky or a glass of water. I believe I am getting better at it, though. Master Qui-Gon says that if I can care for everybody the way I care for him that I will be a great force of good in this universe.
* * *
Working through the problem Master Zin-Lo had given them took all the concentration Obi-Wan had within him. So when he heard the sneeze, he sighed and lifted his head to try and figure out who it was from. Several others did similarly and it did not take long to discover the culprit. Padawan Rilo was sitting at his station with his hand covering the lower half of his face. Unlike the others, he was not working on the problem, and instead wore a dazed sort of look. He did not look good at all.
Obi-Wan's annoyance at being disturbed went away at once. Instead, Obi-Wan felt sorry for Rilo, but quickly went back to his problem. He completed it just before time ran out, turned it in with the others' and then fought his way across the crowd of padawans leaving the lecture hall. Bant followed behind him, making excuses for both of them to their agemates. Obi-Wan reached Rilo's side as the padawan slowly got up and followed the group out towards the cafeteria for lunch. Rilo saw their approach and smiled mildly to thank them for their concern.
"Rilo, you really should be back in your quarters getting some sleep if you're not feeling well," Obi-Wan said, patting the young man on his back as they left the lecture hall.
"And you definitely look like you're not feeling well," Bant added as they headed down a corridor.
His ears red, Rilo shook his head. "I feel miserably sick. And I know I should be in bed... but I can't."
"Why is that?" Obi-Wan asked curiously as they continued onward.
"I don't think my master would appreciate me getting sick," Rilo admitted.
"But Master Sella is so nice!" Bant exclaimed. "Sure she would say as we do and have you go to bed to feel better. You're not just doing this to avoid the healers, are you?"
They turned the corner, just one hallway away from the cafeteria now.
"No," Rilo said, shaking his head. "It's just that... I want so badly to please her. And with evaluations so close and all... I don't want her to know I let myself catch a cold. I can put up with a little bit of misery for that."
Bant continued to push the subject as they headed into the busy cafeteria and searched for an empty table. But Obi-Wan had to admit he understood completely. Padawans were expected to take on serious duties. Padawans were expected to always be on their best. And padawans were not expected to get sick as often as initiates. Obi-Wan broke off his thoughts to find Bant still trying to convince Rilo to go to his quarters or the healing dome. Obi-Wan, instead, put a hand on Rilo's back and led him to an empty chair. "Rest," he said. "We'll get you food."
"Not very hungry," their fellow padawan admitted, sniffling.
"Now you definitely need to eat," Bant insisted.
Obi-Wan nodded in agreement. "We'll get you something small and easy on your stomach. Just rest in the meantime." Rilo obeyed, leaning back in his seat, closing his eyes, crossing his arms over his chest.
While they were getting food, Obi-Wan talked to Bant about not pushing any further, and by the time they returned to the table, she had given in to Obi-Wan's wisdom. They found Rilo still sitting where they had left him, but with his arms crossed on the table and his head resting upon them.
Obi-Wan had procured a bowl of soup, some pudding, and a glass of juice for Rilo. He set the tray of lunch down in front of Rilo and sat down beside him. Rubbing his hand up and down Rilo's back, he felt the man sigh deeply. "Bruck came by," Rilo said, sitting up and sniffling.
"Picking on the sick?" Bant said, flanking Rilo's other side. "Yeah, that sounds like Chun. Are you all right?"
Nodding, "He didn't even touch me. Just talked big. Don't think there was much point in making me feel bad. I already feel so horrible."
* * *
Obi kills Bruck (this starts a few days after that)
Qui comforts him- closer than he'd ever been before, touching, etc.
"Never too old to climb into my lap"
Obi realizes that things change, that no one is safe forever. Vows to be perfect and not make Q ashamed of him
Attempt to pull this off without cheesy amounts of angst/drama and try not to sound like a DPS fic... go for sweet and touching
* * *
Obi-Wan gets sick and is afraid his master will not be pleased with him
Obi tries to hide it, collapses in a training class
Obi is taken to the healing dome
Qui feels guilty for not having seen- he'd been distracted with "other thoughts"
Tala comforts him.
Qui sits by his bedside a long time
Tala tells him to go home and get Obi his things
Obi has bad, feverish dreams... that involve Qui- those aren't so bad, actually
Obi-Wan wakes and manages a short entry about how Qui doesn't care about the work or the skills so long as he's okay. Obi says he only feels comforted when Q is there
* * *
Q catches whatever O had in previous part
They're asked into the council chambers to be assigned a mission
Obi-Wan flat-out refuses because Qui-Gon is ill
"Forget your place, you have."
"My place is beside my master, protecting him as he does me."
They let Obi-Wan take Q home to care for him. Qui-Gon tells him not to make a habit out of defying the council (ironically, of course), O says not to worry. Won't let it happen again. But some things are too important not to stand up to anyone about, even when he swore to himself to be perfect
* * *
Open with- See that thing on your wrist? It's a small clock. Tells time. And your says , not 12, but . Thirty-four minutes late!
i.e. O comes late to a meeting with Bant
He "slept in"
she is concerned as he's always so punctual, asks if he's sick. He's not though he ran all the way there and his cheeks were flushed
Confesses to his journal that he wasn't sleeping in. He had woken up with side effects after a very explicit dream with a hard on that even a freezing cold shower had not been able to take care of. So he'd had a go at himself and lost track of time. It was a dream about Qui-Gon
* * *
Sick on a mission, Qui-Gon is proud he was so good at hiding his illness and carrying on with his duties almost effortlessly.
Don't concentrate on this too much, or it'll sound like every other Obi fic you've ever written. Make it lighter and stress the fact that Qui is showing emotions. Able to do that on away missions- they'll have to discuss the complexities of their relationship later. Obi had been holding in his feelings as well, but is glad for there being room for all sorts of love in their relationship.
Qui kisses Obi-Wan, who kisses back (Obi doesn't want to wait any more to show his affection). Then they dance together
Later Obi-Wan is so excited he goes out on their balcony and sings, boyishly
Qui-Gon pulls him back inside. "You fool. You have a fever. Do you want to make yourself worse?"
Obi-Wan doesn't care, he's so excited he might burst. His master actually saying he was proud of his padawan and also the kissing and dancing... too much to handle without bursting
* * *
Obi putting away his journal. It's on the last page and he is done with the year. Qui-Gon comes in and is pleased he was still writing in it.
Obi says he's glad he had. Took him all year to realize that he wanted to keep a journal.
Q asks why it took a whole year to realize this
Obi wan says some things take a year
Then O asks if it took Qui a year to realize he was in love with Obi
Qui smiles. 'Sometimes it takes more than a year to realize things." Clearly he's loved Obi for ages but was just waiting for the right moment (Obi showed great maturity and skill on the away mission)
"So long as it happens in the end" Qui agrees with Obi.
Picture from prologue falls out, Obi explains what it was, thought he'd lost that but it was safe in his journal the whole time
Q asks why he has a strange expression. It's because Obi was trying not to sneeze
"You do seem to pick the worst times."
Qui says he doesn't have much better ones. Yes, but if it wasn't for Obi's sneezes, maybe they wouldn't have...
Qui-Gon hugs him and shakes his head. No, they would have. It would have just happened differently. But this was so right it was bound to happen. Like destiny. But make this not quite so cheesy :-)