The Ondarian Virus

Part 22


This part's rating: PG

See part 0 for full header



     Obi-Wan flopped down on the bed on his stomach. Though there was a handkerchief clutched in his hand, he wasn't doing much sneezing. "Baster," he said stuffily. "What're we havig for didder?"


     Qui-Gon did not take his eyes off the data pad in his hands. "Anything you like, Padawan. So long as we have the ingredients. I will not have the time nor energy to go out for anything. I have not been able to get much done these last few days."


     Obi-Wan pulled himself up and tramped over to the kitchen area. He returned a few minutes later, flopping onto the bed again.


     Slightly curious, and trying to ignore Obi-Wan's deep sigh, Qui-Gon asked, "Did you find something you liked?"


     With a shrug. "Dot really. Cad I cook todight?"


     One of Qui-Gon's eyebrows rose. "If you like, you're more than welcome to."


     Obi-Wan shrugged and rolled over from his stomach to his back. He tossed the handkerchief up into the air and caught it when it came back down to him. "It was just a thought." He paused in his efforts to sneeze. "huh-huh-CHIII! IhShhh!" he sneezed freely, not caring to use his handkerchief at all. He sniffed hard a few times, then continued tossing the handkerchief. "If we had sub Gargada cheese, I could do that sbecial basta dish you like."


     This was not enough to move Qui-Gon. "I'm sorry, Padawan. I have too much work today. I have a presentation with part of the council tomorrow I must prepare for, and I am afraid I did not get much work done yesterday."


     Obi-Wan nodded, looking a little disappointed. He gave his master's words a respectful pause, then risked a casual proposal, "I could go get the cheese."


     Qui-Gon tensed and looked up from the datapad. "You most certainly cannot."


     With a rub to his nose, Obi-Wan flipped back over onto his stomach. He hugged the handkerchief to his stomach. "I'b feelig so buch better," Obi-Wan rushed an explaination. "I will be very quick. Just to the store add back. I wod't talk to adybody add I'b gettig good at holdig back by sdeezes."


     Looking almost shocked that Obi-Wan would even suggest it, Qui-Gon shook his head. "Absolutely not. I do not care if you try to hold your breath the whole time, you are not going out to the store."


     Obi-Wan was not one to give up so easily. "How about just the hallway outside? If I go to the edd of the corridor add back?"


     Turning his attention back to his work, Qui-Gon shook his head firmly and said, in an equally firm voice, "You are not to leave our quarters until you are well, and that is final."


     Obi-Wan's head snapped down. "ihhhKShhhh!"


     "And you are not yet well," Qui-Gon observed. "So I'm afraid to say you are stuck with the food in the kitchen and stuck with the entertainment in our quarters. If there is something you desire, I shall be more than happy to pick it up for you on my way home tomorrow."


     Obi-Wan sighed deeply in frustration and defeat, but he was otherwise silent following his master's offer. Qui-Gon waited for a reply for a minute or two, then threw himself back into his work.


     Minutes after that, a second deep sigh caught Qui-Gon's attention. Obi-Wan was not yet strong enough in sensing the living Force to be able to pick up on the subtle nuances of situations. Instead, he received overall pictures and feelings, and thus his reactions tended towards the good or bad extremes most of the time. It was therefore perfectly normal for Obi-Wan to be a tad overdramatic at times, and it seemed that now, with his cold having confined him to their quarters for weeks now, this was one of those times. Qui-Gon had discovered it was best not to humor him. "What is it now, Padawan?"


     As though waiting for that specific question, Obi-Wan answered quickly with a seemingly rehearsed answer. "I ab bored, Baster," he said with another deep sigh. "I have read every book, watched every holovid, blayed every gabe." He brightened for a moment. "Do you wadt to take a break add blay sub cards with be?"


     Qui-Gon set down his datapad, turning it off with a beep. Obi-Wan sat up excitedly in anticipation. "What I would like is to finish my work," Qui-Gon explained. He leaned over and kissed Obi-Wan. The kiss took Obi-Wan slightly unawares, but after a few moments, his lips moved, joining in on the kiss. Qui-Gon's lips relaxed into a smile, then he pulled back. "I need to check my messages for some information. You're welcome to come with but stay warm, all right?" The environmental controls for their bedroom were turned up higher than normal, filling the room with heat to accompany the vaporizer. Those in the common room, however, were normal and Obi-Wan had confessed to feeling chillier when out there.


     Obi-Wan nodded.


     Taking the datapad along with him, Qui-Gon sat down at the desk in the common area. He read through his listing of messages until he found the few he had been looking for which pertained to his report.


     Obi-Wan entered the room, a blanket around his shoulders. He made for the sofa and collapsed upon it with a dramatic sigh. Qui-Gon did not look up and hid his amusement as well. Obi-Wan picked up a book he'd left on the coffee table amidst tissues and flipped through its pages. "hihhh..." A sneeze built up, and he turned his head so as not to sneeze on the book. "hih-EHHShhhhh! IhhSchhhh! Sniff!" As he sniffled and did not even move to the handkerchief resting in his lap, he gave the book a last look. Then he tossed it back onto the coffee table. "Baster?" he called out, sounding tired and pitiful.


     Qui-Gon did not look up. "Yes, Obi?" he said almost automatically, guessing what was to come.


     "I'b tired of stayig id here. I'b really bored." He coughed and closed his eyes.


     Making note of something written on the console in front of him, Qui-Gon replied offhandedly. "You could clean," Qui-Gon suggested. Though he did not look up, he could sense his padawan's displeasure at this and heard an accompanying grunt. So he pitched another suggestion. "You could come help me with my work. The sooner I finish here, the sooner I can do things with you like playing cards."


     Obi-Wan coughed again. "I dod't feel like working."


     Qui-Gon's eyes darted over to the sofa and he tensed up in concern. Pushing his work away at once, he asked, "Are you running a fever again?"


     "I cad't tell." With his palm pressed to his forehead, Obi-Wan shrugged. Hugging the blanket around his shoulders, Obi-Wan trudged over to his master.


     Qui-Gon touched the back of his hands to Obi-Wan's cheek, then his forehead. "No, you feel fine," Qui-Gon said, sounding quite relieved. It was not at all like Obi-Wan to simply not feel like working. Not that he could blame the man. Nineteen days in the same several rooms would surely make him feel restless, too. He flipped his hand over and caressed the side of Obi-Wan's face. "My Obi-Wan," he said with a sigh. "I know how hard this has been for you. But you're so close to the end of it now. And I have confidence in your ability to hold out."


     The corner of Obi-Wan's mouth twitched upwards and he shrugged again. "I'b dot cut out for relaxig. I'b so bored."


     Qui-Gon pulled Obi-Wan onto his lap, adjusting the blanket to keep it around Obi-Wan just as his arm now was. In the beginning of this cold, all feverish days aside, Obi-Wan had been mentally alert and physically unable to do anything. Now he was feeling a bit better but so tired of taking it easy for his health that he did not feel like even thinking any more. Qui-Gon knew just a few minutes walking around outside would greatly improve his mental state, but he could not allow even that. Tala had called this highly contagious and there was no telling who Obi-Wan might run into. And neither he nor Obi-Wan would be able to forgive themselves easily if they allowed someone else to catch this from Obi-Wan.


     "I know," Qui-Gon said with a sigh.


     "HEHShhhh!" Obi-Wan sneezed freely, ignoring his handkerchief again. Qui-Gon gave his shoulders a squeeze and nudged him to turn a bit so as not to sneeze on the communications terminal. "huh-huh-EESchhhhh! Sniff! Sniiiiiff!"


     Qui-Gon pulled the handkerchief from Obi-Wan's hand and rubbed at Obi-Wan's nose with it. "The trick is to enjoy relaxing enough that it's not just a chore and does not seem like a requirement. Do you understand?"


     Grudgingly, Obi-Wan nodded. "I'b sorry," he whispered, resting his head on Qui-Gon's shoulder. "I dod't uderstad why I always have to get sick add go through all this. I'b so tired of all this."


     It was true that Obi-Wan did not always have the best luck when it came to off-world viruses. Or on-world ones, for that matter. He thought telling Obi-Wan it was because he was unlucky but strong enough to handle it, but he did not predict Obi-Wan wanted to hear that. "How about you snuggle with me here and watch while I work. Then you can help me pick out something to eat for dinner. And over dinner we can discuss all the things you want to do in nine days when you're over this."


     Smiling weakly, Obi-Wan nodded. "I thidk I'd like that."