Fandom: Star Wars
Warnings: lots of smarmy fluff
Disclaimer: Lucas! Not me! It's all him, baby!
Summary: Another short ficlet in which Obi-Wan cannot help feeling sneezey and Qui-Gon is amused but snuggley
"heh...heh..." The build-up started slowly but steadily, pulling at his chest and throat and allowing him time to raise a finger to his nose and rub vigorously at his nostrils. They would, of course, have had to sleep outside in a tent, right in the middle of it all. The chill night air accompanied with the natural vegetation of the world had been wreaking havoc on his sinuses since landing. But in the still of the night, without documents to sift through and delegates to calm, before he could make himself fall to sleep, the tickles in his nose were all he could concentrate on. "heh-heh-ehhhhh..." The urge to sneeze was too much, even as his rubbings were now from the tip of his finger to the base of his thumb. "heh-heh-NNGhhhhh!" He took a deep breath afterwards with a bit of relief.
Somewhere over his left shoulder, crickets chirped. And somewhere far off the sound of footsteps came and went. They were off far enough so that he wouldn't disturb many with his sneezes, and their whole congregation had been awfully forgiving of the few that had sneaked out past his Jedi defenses earlier. He had sneezed with proper decorum, however, and the half of the attendees missed them and had to be informed afterwards of why the Jedi Padawan's normally constant string of translations had paused for the briefest of moments.
But now there wasn't even the politeness work brought to distract him from his severely tickling nose. "hehhh... heh-uhhh..." Again, he set to rubbing his nose, the knuckles of his first finger running against his twitching nostrils. They seemed to have absolutely no affect and the short, gaspy breaths continued on. "hehh...heh-guhhh...heh-keh-hehhhh..." The sneeze came as close as it could get without getting out, just teetering somewhere in his nose playfully. He stopped rubbing his nose and instead held his finger beneath it, pressing hard. If it wasn't going to come out right away, there was a chance he could hold it back longer. "hehh..." The sensation didn't seem quite as bad as a moment ago, but he kept his finger in place, leaning his thumb against the bridge of his nose, exhaling warmly against part of his palm. As patient as always, he waited, hoping against hope that the sneeze might back down, at least long enough to let him fall asleep.
It was, perhaps, this attempt at hoping that did him in completely. The sneeze was coming, and coming so quickly he could barely do anything to prepare. Even as it built-up, like so many times before, he knew he could do nothing against it. "heh... heh-ehhgg-uhhhh'INNGuhhhh!"
Stirring out of his meditation, Qui-Gon rolled over, taking his sleeping back along with him. "With a build-up like that, you'd think your sneeze would have been a bit bigger, Padawan."
Obi-Wan rubbed his finger under his nose, sniffled, and turned over from his back to his side to look at Qui-Gon. "Any bigger and I'll have to blow my nose."
Qui-Gon reached over and ran his finger along the
"It would be bad," said Obi-Wan, lips moving and causing Qui-Gon's finger to slip down to the cleft in his chin, "Because I didn't bring any handkerchiefs with me to blow my nose into."
Qui-Gon, ever-calm and ever-polite, perfectly concealed his amusement everywhere but his eyes, which Obi-Wan read clearly. "So you thought you could make it through a week-long stay on a planet you seem, forgive me for saying so, horribly allergic to?"
Obi-Wan saw the humor, but kept it as hidden as his master. "And you, forgive me for saying so, suddenly feel the need to tell me what to do when it comes to a bit of the sniffles?"
A breathy laugh escaped past Qui-Gon's lips, and he nodded. "All right, all right, I see your point. His hand reached back up and rubbed gently at Obi-Wan's temple, as though brushing back hair he didn't have. "I suppose I sometimes miss that sniffley little initiate who'd come up after environment training, tugging on my robes and asking to borrow my handkerchief."
Obi-Wan rolled his eyes and, chuckling softly, turned his face into the pack he was using as a pillow to hide the blush in his cheeks.
"Aww! There he was, for a second, I think I saw him," Qui-Gon said, his smile showing through immensely in his voice so that Obi-Wan, head buried against his luggage, could see it. Obi-Wan took a deep breath and looked up again, sniffling. Qui-Gon waited, and finally got a reluctant head not, which made him smile. "Ah, good. Because I just so happen to have remembered my handkerchief." After propping himself up on one elbow, he put his hand into his sleeping bag. He withdrew it with a dramatic flourish, the regarded it as though wondering whatever he should do with it. His eyes snuck over to the still barely blushing Obi-Wan, then back to the handkerchief.
Obi-Wan chuckled again. "Can I please have the- heh- the hah...hah-hand..." he stopped to rub furiously at his nose. He looked up desperately for a moment before his eyes snapped shut. "hah-hehhh-NNGuhhhh! Sniff!" He swallowed and tried again. "Can I please have the handkerchief, Master?"
A mischievous smile spread on Qui-Gon's face. "May I have the handkerchief?"
"But you already have it!" Obi-Wan protested, working his finger under his nose again, this time holding back another sneeze already. Qui-Gon raised an eyebrow. "All right. May I please have the handkerchief, Master?"
Qui-Gon looked it over again. Then, suddenly, shook his head. "You ask politely, my padawan. But I think no."
"No? heh-hahhh!" He caught the urge before it could build too badly, nostrils flaring against his finger. "But, Master--"
"You see, it's the only one I brought. What if I happen to come down with something, as we all know I am frequently inclined to doing? And it's such a nice handkerchief, besides. Perfect size to keep up my sleeve, military style, without it showing. It's all nice and pressed and white now. Who knows how it would be after you're through with it?"
Obi-Wan, who had resigned himself to spending the whole mission sniffling and sneezing on and off without sleep, was watching the handkerchief as though it offered salvation. Now that it was in his sight, nearly within his reach, he could not deny that he greatly desired it. "Master, I... I... heh... I have to snehh-sneeze-heh-heh-hehNnggg! Mphshh!" The second sneeze had struck so suddenly and unexpectedly that he'd barely been able to restrain it properly. The sneeze was stifled against the back of his hand, but the tickle remained lodged in his nose. He needed to sneeze again, and he wanted that handkerchief before he did.
"Yes, Padawan? Having trouble thinking up a proper argument, I shouldn't wonder?" Qui-Gon let the handkerchief rock back and forth a bit in the air, held tightly in his fingers, teasing Obi-Wan with its soft white folds that seemed to never end.
"No, Master. Simply presenting a good argument of my own, there. Snniiiffff!" He made the worst display of rubbing the back of his palm against his nose with loud snuffles, pretending that his sniffles were a bit worse than they really were. At the sound, Qui-Gon lowered his hand sympathetically, the handkerchief just a few inches closer to Obi-Wan now. The handkerchief, just a few feet away, was too tempting to resist. He made a grab for it, and fell forward into the space between his and Qui-Gon's sleeping bags as Qui-Gon had pulled it away at just the last possible instant. The laughter was contagious, and Obi-Wan joined in for he should have known better than to try and win when he was tired and sniffley against Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn's lightning reflexes.
"That was a good attempt at an argument. You certainly earned points for that. But that unruly conduct just now... I'm afraid I cannot let that go either. So you'll have to try something else." He was grinning. There wasn't much left to try.
"I... Mas-Qui-Gon, I need the handkerchief. Sniff! Badly. Please ca-may, may I have it?" It wasn't much of an attempt, but it was a good one.
Qui-Gon softened. "I suppose so... if you really need it." He quickly pulled his arm, handkerchief and all, into his sleeping bag and lay down. "Come and get it." He was wicked, and from his grin, he knew it. And was clearly glad of being in a position to enjoy it.
Obi-Wan looked momentarily shocked, but leaped out of his sleeping bag. A positive response was a positive response, after all. And he did desperately need it. He fought Qui-Gon with snuffley kisses and managed to distract the man long enough to unzip the sleeping bag. The handkerchief was nowhere to be seen, but Obi-Wan had expected as much.
"Where-sniff, sniff!- wherever could it be?" He began feeling down the sides of Qui-Gon's tunic, trying to find a bulge or a place where the fabric was a bit more wrinkled than any other due to something lurking beneath. But he seemed not to have hidden it there. "Better make sure," he said, running his hands up beneath the layers and feeling Qui-Gon's hot chest. Qui-Gon jumped in surprise at the contact with the cold hands, but did not push him away. "Not here," Obi-Wan mused. He pulled his hand out, and put on a pout. "Master," he said, tugging on Qui-Gon's sleeve. "Can't I borrow your hanky? Please? I'll give it right back," he offered.
Though laughing, Qui-Gon was not about to give up so easily. "And what makes you think I'd want it back after you've blown your nose on it?"
Obi-Wan shrugged, in as much of a shrug as was possibly as he worked his hands up and down the insides of Qui-Gon's sleeves, not finding the handkerchief there either, but warming his hands up a little more in the process. "I thought it was worth a shot." Obi-Wan kissed Qui-Gon hard, as his hands reached around behind Qui-Gon's head, feeling the back of his neck and down his shit. Nothing there, either.
Quickly, Obi-Wan pulled back. He was sitting on Qui-Gon's thighs now, straddling his master. He sat up straighter as the feeling of another sneeze came upon him. Soft but strong. Tender but teasing. "heh..." He rubbed his finger under his nose, already sensing that the urge had gone too far to try to hold it back. The kiss had distracted him for too long. It was, however, a most acceptable loss. "heh-heh-NNgghh! Hah... heh..." Another was already on its way, and though he could have sniffled and held it back a bit, it was easier just to sneeze and let it out now rather than delaying the inevitable. For he needed to get back to the handkerchief hunt as soon as possible, and it was clear Qui-Gon was getting impatient beneath him, as well. "heh-ehhh-Ngguhhh!"
Qui-Gon smiled dreamily. "Oh, my poor padawan... all sneezey and sniffley and cannot find a handkerchief."
"I'll be fine. I'll use your sleeve if I have to," Obi-Wan snapped back, trying and failing to look annoyed. This was, oddly, frustratingly fun. Qui-Gon laughed out at this statement. "But I won't have to," said Obi-Wan. "I'll find the hanky. Just you watch."
Qui-Gon, still laughing, but this time in part because Obi-Wan's fingers were rushing down his sides and stomach again, making him feel warm and ticklish. "I am sure you will. You're such a bright boy." He faked a stretch, arms up over his head. Then bent them at the elbows with his hands behind his head. "I'll just sit back and wait, shall I?"
Obi-Wan's hands ran down his thighs, then his legs, and began feeling up the legs of his leggings.
"Just, ah," he faked a yawn this time, reached down, and stroked his beard, smacked his lips a few times, then brought his arm back up. "Just wake me up if you ever do find it, all right?"
Taking the hint, Obi-Wan stopped his current exploits and ran his hands back up again. There was only one last place to look. With hot, almost sweaty hands, he unbuttoned the leggings and tugged them down just enough to see a bit of white fabric there. Grinning with triumph, he lowered his head and snuffled into the handkerchief. He nuzzled and rubbed and did all sorts of things he might have done even had there not been a handkerchief there in the first place. Nose feeling a bit better, he plunged his hands in. Qui-Gon jumped again, even though Obi-Wan's hands were no longer cold. After a few well-placed rubs, Obi-Wan extracted the handkerchief, smiling.
He held it up in triumph for his master to see, not a moment to soon. His breathing hitched, his face fell, and he buried the lower half of his visage into the large white, now not completely pressed and wrinkle-free cloth. "heh-heh-hah-Mmphshhoo! Ehh-Mmmshhooo! EhhmPhhhshhh!" He blew his nose gently, the tickle going with it on the first try, much to his relief.
Obi-Wan felt warm arms coming up to embrace him, and he was pulled down against Qui-Gon as never would have happened after using Qui-Gon's handkerchief as a slightly shy little initiate. Obi-Wan grasped it carefully in his hand, not about to let it go for a moment. Qui-Gon pulled the rest of the sleeping bag back up and sipped it from the inside. It was a tight fit, at first, but they were both so snuggly and warm that there was really no noticing the way they couldn't take full breaths at the same time. "You knew where the handkerchief was all along, didn't you?" Qui-Gon whispered, his words warm and gentle against Obi-Wan's cold ears. Unlike his master, had no long hair to keep them warm. This was, in his estimation, much better.
Obi-Wan nodded. "Of course. But you're likely to have died if I'd gone right for it. Foreplay, Master, is important. Even if there's no actual sex."
Smiling from behind at the thought of his padawan explaining to him about foreplay, his arms wrapped and tangled in Obi-Wan's. "Big build-ups mean bigger sneezes?"
Obi-Wan nodded. "Thank you for the handkerchief, Master." He carefully rubbed it against his nose. The fabric was soft and comforting against his increasingly tender nose. Soft and warm like his master's hold. He carefully folded it and held it close for further use.
After a few minutes more of sniffling, he pulled it out again and rubbed some more. The tickle, it seemed, was finally dying down now that he'd had a few good sneezes. "I lied, Master," Obi-Wan said at last, so warm and comforted lying there enveloped by the man that he was hardly aware of his sudden honesty. "I wouldn't have used your shirt sleeve unless you'd have told me I could. I probably would have used my own instead."
Qui-Gon did not have to see or touch the younger man's cheeks with his lips to know that another blush had settled there. "I know," he said. "But I lied, too. That isn't my only handkerchief. I have a few, actually. Probably enough to last the rest of the mission, if you're careful. Assuming whatever is making your nose tickle so much stays around so long."
"It's a good assumption," Qui-Gon said, rubbing his finger against his nose so as not to waste the handkerchief on something so puny. He sighed and relaxed as he felt his master squeeze him in a gentle hug. "Thank you, again."
Qui-Gon stroked his head gently, the buzzed hair soft against his palm, making him smile. "I didn't say you could have the other ones so easily, now did I?"
Obi-Wan smiled back and let his master pet him to sleep, clutching the handkerchief tightly, just in case.