The Ondarian Virus

Part 8


This part's rating: PG13

See part 0 for full header



     Qui-Gon's pace was brisk as he headed down the hallways of the Jedi temple towards the quarters he shared with Obi-Wan. It had been difficult to leave his sick padawan's side the day before, which had been the first time he had gone out since his padawan's illness. But leaving today had been even more difficult. Obi-Wan had not complained or begged or even tried to tease him into staying, but that was because he had been somewhat delirious all morning.


     The young man's fever, which had been nearly gone the previous day, had returned overnight. A sponge bath had helped the fever decrease in severity by mid-morning, but Qui-Gon had not been at all pleased to see the flush in his Obi-Wan's cheeks, nor the glazed-over look in Obi-Wan's eyes.


     Still, he had obligations within the temple he could not ignore, and had been forced to leave for much of the day. He had considered, briefly, stopping at the cafeteria to bring home food on his way back. But as he set out after his last meeting, his feet had automatically taken him in the direction of his quarters rather than towards the cafeteria and by the time he realized it, he was too anxious to get home to correct himself.


     Obi-Wan had promised to drink ample amounts of water, and to that end Qui-Gon had left a pitcher and glass on their bedside table. Obi-Wan had also promised to remain in bed where it was warm. Qui-Gon could sense nothing wrong as he approached their room, trusting in the force to tell him when it was appropriate to be concerned, and trusting that his padawan would call out to him if there were any emergency.


     But as he reached their quarters, opened the door, and stepped inside, he was struck with an image he had not imagined. Obi-Wan was not in bed at all, but up and walking. Or, at least, he was trying to walk and stay upright. He clung to the doorway of their bedroom with one hand. His other hand was out in front, using his command of the force to help himself balance despite his apparent dizziness. Obi-Wan took a step forward and swayed on the spot. The surge in the force, due to his master's sudden presence in the room, had not helped to steady him. Nor did it help him repress a sneeze he felt coming on.


     "ihhh-ihhh-KShuhhh! ehhhChuhhh!" The sneezes snapped him forward, but he managed to move with it, not fight the movements. His hand gripped the doorjamb tightly, while his other pressed a palm flat against the wall to keep himself from collapsing to the floor. Then he looked across the room at Qui-Gon. "Hello."


     Qui-Gon crossed the room at once, grabbing hold of Obi-Wan with an arm around the young man's waist and a hand gripping Obi-Wan's wrist. He steered Obi-Wan around and helped Obi-Wan back to the bed. "I thought I made it perfectly clear," he said, sounding somewhat gruff, "That I wanted you to stay in bed. And if I recall correctly, you gave me your word that you would do so."


     Obi-Wan nodded. "But, Baster--" Obi-Wan looked back over his shoulder, as though trying to imagine turning around and leaving the bedroom again even though his body, guided by Qui-Gon, would not follow.


     "No objections. Back to bed with you." Qui-Gon brought him back into the room, threw back the covers, and set him down on the bed. The lecture began once Obi-Wan was not in risk of collapsing. "I feel guilty enough having to leave you. I cannot imagine how badly I would feel if you were to hurt yourself."


     "I... I'b sorry..." Obi-Wan said, clearly not wanting to cause his master undue grief. But, feeling the need to sneeze again, Obi-Wan tensed up. Qui-Gon gave him a disapproving look but, with his eyes closed and jaw slack when he was on the verge of sneezing, Obi-Wan did not notice it. "hihhhh..." he exhaled, the pitch high and desperate. He went stiff and fought against the strength, placing two fingers under his nose. "IHTChh! Hehtchh!" he half-stifled.


     Qui-Gon handed him tissues then eased him down. He pulled up the covers and tucked them tightly around Obi-Wan. "Now then," he said, sitting down on the edge of the bed and cupping his hand against Obi-Wan's warm cheek. "I'm home now, and it's a very good thing that I came home when I did."


     Obi-Wan nodded.


     Qui-Gon went on. "So if you need something, I'll be the one to get it for you. Do you understand?"


     Obi-Wan nodded reluctantly. "Yes, Baster," he said automatically.


     "Good," Qui-Gon smiled and stroked his thumb against Obi-Wan's cheek. "What is it you need, then?"


     Obi-Wan sniffled. "I've beed dridkig a lot of water, as you said I should Add dow I deed to use the refresher."


     After a brief pause at the unexpected answer, Qui-Gon smiled sheepishly and pulled the covers down. "Of course you do. Come, then." He slid his arm around Obi-Wan again, letting the younger man lean on him fully for support as they walked back out and into the 'fresher. "You seem terribly unsteady. Are you feeling dizzy when you try to stand?" Qui-Gon asked.


     Obi-Wan nodded tried to move his feet to keep up with Qui-Gon but the room was spinning around him and he was too tired to properly keep up. As it was, Qui-Gon had to drag him along and he stumbled forward, clinging to Qui-Gon, until they reached the 'fresher. As Obi-Wan automatically tugged down the waistband of his sleep pants, Qui-Gon held him upright from behind.


     As Obi-Wan finished, feeling unsteady, Qui-Gon nuzzled him affectionately and murmured reassurances into Obi-Wan's ear. Obi-Wan could feel his master's response to his brief nudity, pressing into Obi-Wan's rear. And though feverish and very much unable to answer Qui-Gon's needs, Obi-Wan still smiled at the familiar sensation and the fact that Qui-Gon even now found him attractive.  


     "I'm sorry," Qui-Gon whispered, hugging Obi-Wan. "I just miss you."


     After flushing and pulling his pants back up into position, Obi-Wan turned his head and kissed Qui-Gon's cheek. "I'b sorry, too. hahhh-" His breath caught and he leaned back against Qui-Gon for support. "hahh-IHKShhhh! Hipshuhhh! ehhhKShuhh!" He sniffled and rubbed at his nose. "If you wadt, I cad try to..."


     "No," Qui-Gon replied quickly. "Absolutely not. You have got a high fever. You can barely stand up without collapsing. The only thing I want you doing in bed is resting, all right?"


     In answer, Obi-Wan turned and snuggled into Qui-Gon's chest.


     Qui-Gon wrapped his arms around Obi-Wan again and hugged more tightly. "Good, Padawan Mine. I'll help you back to bed, now. And please do not let me cut you off again when you're trying to tell me something important."


     "Yes, Baster," Obi-Was said again, though he was smiling brightly this time. And he moved steadily back to the room at the prospect of returning to bed with Qui-Gon.