The Ondarian Virus

Part 3


This part's rating: PG

See part 0 for full header

Additional notes: This makes a minor reference to events in my fic 'To Old Friends' but you don't need to have read it to read this



     Obi-Wan rolled over, pressing his cheek into the pillow. He stretched and instinctively reached up and wrapped his arm around the pillow. He pulled it close, hugging part to his chest while he pinned the other part to the bed beneath his head. Feeling quite tired, he wanted to try to fall back to sleep. But his nose was tickling a little. He rolled his head further into the pillow and sniffed wetly. It was only as he began to debate getting up to blow his nose did Obi-Wan begin to put things together and realize he was no longer in their spacecraft.


     Immediately he sat up and looked around. He had assumed, apparently falsely, that if he wasn't in the ship he was back in their quarters. He could not remember much of the day before but he clearly recalled being given a choice and choosing to go back home. But this place was definitely not home.


     Though it was not the unsettlingly bright white of their quarters on Ondari, it was still an unfamiliar and uncomfortable room. The walls were all dark green and the room seemed to try to combine three at once, with a couch and coffee table not a few feet from the bed and a kitchen area not a few feet beyond that. There was a single window behind the couch, framed in dark maroon shades, and showing nothing but darkness and stars. Assuming it must mean that it was night, Obi-Wan got up.


     At least, he tried to get up. His head swam with dizziness and he set his hand down on the bed to keep himself from toppling over. Once he'd managed to not hit the floor, he found the dizziness wearing off for the most part. His head still felt a bit fuzzy and his stomach uneasy.


     He also found himself in his undershirt and leggings only. Another glance around the room showed that the rest of his clothing was on the couch, nearly folded. Qui-Gon never folded anything neatly. At least not that neatly. But Obi-Wan couldn't remember undressing, let alone arriving here. Where ever here was.


     Shivering, Obi-Wan pulled one of the blankets off the bed and wrapped it around himself. Then he carefully headed over to look out the window. But as he looked down, he realized it wasn't necessarily night. They weren't on a planet at all, but in the middle of space. Obi-Wan couldn't sense any movement, and he didn't know of ships with well-equipped accommodations. But before he could work things out, he felt the need to sneeze again.


     He ducked his head and sneezed into a corner of the blanket. "IhhhhKShhh! EhhhShehhh! Hehh... hehh-IHHHTChhhh!"


     As he sniffled, the door to the room opened and closed. Obi-Wan felt warmth overcome him through his bond with his master. "Bless you," Qui-Gon called. Obi-Wan turned to see his master, who had a bag in his arms. His expression of great relief was impossible to miss. "It is good to see you're awake finally. And up, too. How are you feeling?"


     He tried to answer, "I..." but Obi-Wan stopped and closed his eyes as another sneeze came. "ihhh... ehhhKIShhhh! hehhhTchhh!" He sniffed and rubbed at his nose. "Master, where are we? I have no memory of getting here." Shivering and feeling weak, he leaned back against the wall.


     "You were out with fever. I carried you." Qui-Gon set the bag down and walked over to put a hand on Obi-Wan's shoulder. "Come on, sit down. You're not well yet."


     Obi-Wan nodded and sat down on the bed. He looked about for a box of tissues and didn't see one. He cupped his hand to his nose. "Qui... I could use a..." He sniffed wetly a few times.


     "I have a few, in fact." Qui-Gon nodded and retrieved one from the bag. He settled on the bed, and crawled around Obi-Wan. He handed over the handkerchief then hugged the man from behind.


     Thankful for it, Obi-Wan immediately shook it out and held it up at the ready. "hehh... IHKshffffff! ehhhKShffff!" The sneezes snapped him forward quickly, making him a little lightheaded. He blew his nose and leaned back against Qui-Gon. He gave himself a few moments until the dizziness wore off before speaking again. "So where are we? I thought I said I didn't want to... to stop." He folded the handkerchief and blew his nose again.


     Qui-Gon nuzzled his neck from behind, then rubbed his cheek and nose into Obi-Wan's short brown hair. He wanted Obi-Wan to relax and not worry. "You were unconscious. I couldn't wake you no matter what I tried and I..."


     "You got scared." Obi-Wan smiled, knowing Qui-Gon couldn't see him.


     Qui-Gon sent a warning to Obi-Wan through their bond not to tread there. "I overruled your decision," he said. "So I stopped at this space station and got us a room."


     Obi-Wan stiffened. "A space station? Master, there's no telling--"


     "It's all right. I know this place. I've been here before." He laughed softly. "In fact, I was here when I was a padawan learner, younger than you are now." Obi-Wan was still tense. "We are safe here. I had to drop a name or two and spend a little money. But you needed the rest so it was worth it."


     With a sigh, Obi-Wan nodded. Then he turned his attention back onto the handkerchief. "ihhhKkk... EHHKShhhh! AhhhKshhhh! hahhhShhhh!" He shivered violently and rubbed at the ache in his head.


     "Come on. Lie down." Qui-Gon eased him back down and under the covers of the bed and lay down beside him, on top of the covers, hugging him through the blankets.


     Obi-Wan knew Qui-Gon only wanted him safe and well, but he would have preferred to wake up at home. And he could guess another reason his master had decided to stop. "And I suppose this space station just happens to have a medical center, too? I thought I made it clear that I did not want to see healers."


     "Actually it used to have a med center, but not any more." Qui-Gon shook his head sadly. "A lot of things have changed since I was a young padawan learner."


     Obi-Wan rolled over with a cough and smiled. "I can imagine." He reached up and ran his hair through his master's long brown hair. He fingered a few pieces that would have made a nice braid but the idea made him miss the Jedi temple too much so he closed his eyes and rubbed his nose with his hand instead.


     Qui-Gon kissed him softly, then rose and walked over to the couch. "Your fever's been better these last few hours. So I snuck out to get some food and something to drink. Luckily the location of the food court hadn't changed though they still don't take republic credits." He took a few small containers of food out of the bag, along with two lidded cups and the other handkerchiefs.


     With his nose in the handkerchief again, Obi-Wan had to sneeze before he could say anything more. "ihhhh-EhhChfffff! HihChiffff! IHshhfffff!" He blew his nose then smiled at Qui-Gon as he sat up a little. "I *am* a little thirsty." He gulped down nearly half the cup when Qui-Gon handed it to him. "How long have we been here, then?"


     "Not very long, actually," Qui-Gon replied, sitting down on the bed. "We docked here late last night and it's not quite midday yet. I was up all night trying to lower your fever. I was hoping your condition would improve quickly and we could be off again without losing too much time in our schedule but I will try to find a free communications channel and contact the council if needed."


     Obi-Wan shook his head. No matter how much Qui-Gon had tried to reassure Obi-Wan that the station was safe, communications sent from here could be easily intercepted by hundreds, if not thousands. Besides wanting to get home to get into his own bed, Obi-Wan hated the idea of arriving late after a mission that had otherwise gone excellently. "No need to contact them, Master. I am quickly recover-ing-ehhh-hehCHISHH!" He clamped the handkerchief to his face, wishing his sneezes had better timing. He had been trying to make a point. "IkkShhffff! HehhShffff!" He blew his nose and tried to ignore the dark spots dancing before his eyes.


     "I asked before, and you did not tell me. How exactly are you feeling?" a concerned Qui-Gon asked, opening up the food cartons and trying to entice Obi-Wan into eating a little. He pressed a fork into Obi-Wan's hand and gestured repeatedly to the food he placed on the bed between them. "Because this last night you really were not doing so well. Coughing and moaning. A dangerously high fever."


     "I'm feeling a little better," Obi-Wan said, trying to sound as though he believed it himself.


     "Liar," Qui-Gon laughed, sending a playful bit of warmth to his padawan through their bond. He pressed his hand to Obi-Wan's forehead. "You're still running a fever. And you're obviously still terribly congested."


     "But I slept well and now I'm ready to head back," Obi-Wan insisted. "So where's the ship docked?"


     Gently, Qui-Gon stroked his forehead, then his cheek.  "I knew you would say that. Let us give it another hour or so, all right? Try to eat something before we go."


     Obi-Wan sniffed wetly and shrugged. "I'm not really hungry. I think it's the fever." As he drank the rest of his drink, he curiously peered over at the container Qui-Gon was holding. "Wait... are those Pratican cream puffs?"


     "Mmmm." Qui-Gon nodded and passed the box over. Obi-Wan quickly picked one up and bit into it, the cream oozing out onto his tongue. He sighed and closed his eyes at the delightful rush of taste. Qui-Gon smiled. "You're *so* easy, Padawan Mine."