Title: 01110011 01101001 01100111
Fandom: Star Wars, sequel trilogy
Notes: Written for May the 4th, 2018 (May the Fourth be with you)
01110011 01101001 01100111
Finn is halfway through a workout, concentrating on his obliques and glutes today, when he hears the familiar whir of a droid rolling on the workout room mat. He turns to see BB-8 barreling through the room, dodging others exercising in various poses or pieces of equipment. The droid’s head is spinning, looking one way then another, probably searching for Poe.
“He’s not here,” Finn says, grabbing his towel and dabbing at his face. Poe was supposed to work out with him today but hadn’t showed. This wasn’t the first time; Poe was always getting caught up with some repair on his ship or some new mission strategy to discuss with his squadron. He found plenty of time for Finn, but right now wasn’t one of those times.
BB-8’s antenna wiggles as the droid rolls straight for him, stopping just an inch away. It’s still close enough to make Finn flinch, thinking he’s going to get hit. BB-8 beeps in rapid binary at him, and Finn shakes his head.
“I can’t understand you. You know I can’t.” Several people—Poe included—have tried to teach him. But it turns out Finn doesn’t have a aptitude for languages.
Another frantic series of beeps follows. And even though Finn has no idea what the droid is saying, he can definitely tell it’s urgent. “What do you want?”
There were the same beeps and then BB-8 circled around Finn, stuck out a tool, and prodded Finn’s ankles with it.
“Ah!” Finn jumped forward. “Hey, cut it out!” BB-8 poked him again, and Finn took several more steps forward. “Wait, can I at least grab my water?” BB-8 prodded and made what sounded like an impatient noise. “Nope. All right. I get it. Moving forward.”
He passes a woman—another one of the pilots; Finn remembered seeing her talking with Poe about formations or something at one of the briefings. The woman is jogging in place on a stretch of track that rotated around in a circle, but she is also laughing. “Pretty insistent, isn’t he?”
“Can you understand him?” Finn asks, hopeful.
“Mmm hmm.” She nods. She offers the least helpful translation possible. “The droid wants you to follow him out of here.”
“What else? There’s gotta be more.”
“There is.” But that’s all she’ll say. She pushes a button and speeds up her track. She breaks into a run and concentrates on that. Conversation over. Finn gets the message.
Several of them, in fact. It must be an emergency. He heads out of the gym and into the hallway. He starts going in one direction, but BB-8 beeps again and circles him, prodding, until he goes the other way. BB-8 chirps in an approving sort of way and zooms ahead to lead the way. Finn follows at a fast pace, wishing he’d had time for a little more stretching. He wasn’t planning on doing cardio today as part of his workout.
They move quickly through the Resistance’s base, and Finn thinks he knows in what direction they’re heading. “The mess hall?” he asks.
BB-8 beeps again, and Finn isn’t sure if that’s a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’ or an ‘obviously, idiot. Honestly, I don’t understand what Poe sees in you.’ But he hopes it’s the first one.
A few minutes later, he’s running into the mess hall behind BB-8. The place is completely empty, and Finn has a terrible feeling that BB-8 just wants him to get some sort of food and drink, but there is no way Finn is going to understand which. Maybe if he goes item by item, pointing, he might figure it out. But he doesn’t think there’s time for that.
BB-8 leads him to a corner of the room and Finn gives a start to realize the place isn’t as deserted as he thought. Lying on his back on one of the long benches behind the far table is Poe. BB-8 gives Finn another poke, and Finn reaches down, swatting. “Hey, quit it! I understand now!” The droid beeps and goes still, waiting for Finn to do the rest.
So Finn rounds the table and squats down beside the man. Poe looks at him then sniffles. “I’b sig,” he mumbles.
Finn sighs and puts his hand on Poe’s warm forehead. “You know I can’t understand your droid. What makes you think I can understand you any better?”
Poe reaches up, a finger just grazing Finn’s chin. He looks like he’s going to say something, but instead he turns his head and sneezes. “h’DZzshhuhh!”
Finn straightens and grabs a napkin off the table. He holds it out, trying to be helpful.
Poe stares at it. Then he turns his head again. “hihh-Kddzzshhh!”
With a sigh, Finn gives up on handing Poe the napkin and goes in to wipe his nose for him instead.
A slow grin spreads across Poe’s face. “Thadgs,” he says, just as slowly.
“Can you get up? Can you make it back to our room?”
Poe considers for a moment then shakes his head. He lifts his arms up. And Finn knows this is the whole reason BB-8 brought him here. He knows Poe has just been lying here, feeling sick, waiting for him. Finn slides his arms under Poe, one at the knees, the other in the middle of his back, and lifts.
Poe puts his arms around Finn’s neck but turns a little to get more comfortable and stable in his lover’s arms.
“Try not to sneeze on me while I’m carrying you. All right?” Finn asks.
Eyes closing, Poe’s body immediately tenses. “het-TDshhhuhh!”
Finn winces. “Okay. Try not to sneeze on me again.”
Poe chuckles as Finn cranes his neck and manages to place a kiss on the man’s forehead. He feels another sharp prodding in his shin, and he stumbles forward. “Hey, cut that out! I almost dropped him!”
BB-8 replies with a long series of beeps, and Poe nods, chuckling again. “I agree.”
Finn feels heat rise within him. “What was that? Are you two talking about me?”
“Doe. Of course dot. Sniff! Tage be to bed?”
Finn does. He moves slowly though steadily, concentrating very hard on not dropping Poe. Thankfully, BB-8 just rolls along beside them the whole way there.