Fretted Hearts 1
Disclaimer: Obi-Wan/Padme and the Starwars Gang belong to George Lucas, this is just the imaginings of an over active mind.
Thanks to Katie and Sara for beta reading this for me.
Tell me how I am doing.
She wondered absently how long she could cry before her tears would be truly spent. How many lies had she been told, and willingly believed, how many times had she defended him. Believed in him only to have the truth come tumbling down. He beloved husband and agent for the dark, his best friend and master forbidden to see her. She sighed. Wiping hastily at her tears.
It would do no good to cry it changed nothing. Not the fact that she was practically under house arrest in her own home. That if Anakin came home he expected her to act like the proper wife and welcome him with open arms, stinking of the darkness.
She glanced at the open doors that lead on to her spacious balcony. She contemplated running away, had given it much thought, only she knew for sure that no one would help Anakin Skywalker’s wife, no not his adulterous wife. She tried to gather her scattered thoughts.
Adulterous indeed, she’d never so much as thought of another man in that way while she’d been married to Anakin. Yet she was accused and convicted of the crime in the eyes of those who at one time might have been able to offer her help. Bad enough was thought but considering her supposed lover was Obi-Wan Kenobi.
While they had certainly never been lovers, she did miss the handsome Jedi. He’d been the only one to seek her out to spend time with her when Anakin was slowly changing, listening to her worries, her fears and easing them the best he’d been able to. Nothing he’d said or done had prepared either of them for Anakin’s insistent self-righteous rage.
She would give just about anything for the Jedi’s calming presence now. She grabbed the silvery shawl that Obi-Wan had found for her on one of his many tracks across the galaxy. She couldn’t recall the planet it had been brought from, only that it had been given to her as a birthday present, with an embarrassed grin, so at odds with his normally sombre expression. She’d seen in him at that moment the boy she’d met all those years before.
It was one of the only things that’s had survived Anakin’s fit of jealous rage, that and a delicate looking rose that had somehow managed not to shatter into a million tiny pieces. She had placed the other treasure in her jewellery box hidden where its simple beauty could not draw his anger. She walked out onto the balcony glancing at the scenery below. She allowed her gaze to move absently over the nighttime landscape forcing herself to calm. The moonlight was bright, softening the harsh edges of reality.
Anakin would not return for another week, which meant she was under house arrest confined to the house and grounds. She shivered wrapping the shawl around herself more tightly. She felt something on the edge of her awareness, a whisper barely formed. She grasped at it, trying to figure out it’s meaning.
“It will not help.” A softly accented voice sounded from the shadows causing her to jump. She spun around, shock on her face as Obi-Wan Kenobi stepped from the shadows.
“What…How. Why…You can’t be here.” She whispered frantic with worry. “If you are found.” Her voice trailed off as she was gathered into a close embrace. “Padme” he whispered her name softly, nuzzling his face into her loss hair.
The young women returned the embrace warmly, she’d missed Obi-wan desperately. The tall Jedi drew back for a moment to study her face in the shadows.
“You can’t be here.” She whispered, pushing the Jedi away glancing around suddenly terrified that they might be seen.
“M’lady wait.” Obi-wan spoke softly, his gaze bright in the half-light. “Come with me.” He said holding out a hand to the surprised woman.
“I…I can’t.” She glanced away from him, refusing to meet his eyes, least he see how very much she wanted to take the offered hand. If she went with him there would be no going back. Anyone who might have doubted her guilt would have reason to believe it, as she would be running away with her ‘lover’.
“Do you care so much, for what they will think.” He demanded his voice sounding harsh in her ears. She locked her eyes with his, in there depths; she caught a hint of the fierce desire to protect her. She sighed realising something then. If she didn’t go willingly he would simply kidnap her.
“All right, I’ll go with you.”
“You honestly thought I was offering you a choice?” she glanced back toward him seeing for the first time on his lips a mischievous smile. She sighed, heading toward the room to gather a few of belongings.
Obi-wan watched her from the shadows; his eyes alight with a mixture of sadness and joy. He could feel her confusion, her pain, her fear, but delight and warmth, and love in no small amounts warred with those other emotions. He knew this was not exactly what they had meant for him to do. They had said protect her, see that she is kept safe. Well he’d been watching and she wasn’t safe here.
He’d been worried, terribly worried, about her knowing she was in dangerous hands. Anakin had become increasingly unpredictable, and Obi-wan feared that the violence in his soul might spill over and harm his wife. While inwardly she was strong as any creature he’d ever encountered, outwardly she was still just a woman, who could be torn about by Anakin’s rage. Already it had started, and while he could see the reasons behind Palaptine’s actions he knew that Anakin was too lost in the power he’d gained to see beyond his new master’s words.
He knew that what he was about to do, would be the strongest declaration of war that he could send Anakin. He was so sure that he’d sequestered his wife far enough away that not even the ‘great obi-wan Kenobi’ would be able to find her. Obi-wan had something on his side that Anakin had never possessed and now never would. He could feel Padme, it was more then just the sensation of her life with in the force, it was a link direct to her.
Forged out of tenderness and care, nursed by their friendship. He knew that it was part of the reason why Anakin had been willing to believe that they were lovers. After all he did not have such a connection with her, how could his master. He should have broken it, the moment he’d sensed it forming.
He could recall clearly the exactly moment he’d realised it was more then just the force. How long it had been there he didn’t know. Perhaps always as she had said. Her awareness of it was dulled, but she had begged him to leave it, liking the knowledge that if she ever needed him he would be there.
She needed him now.
“You do realise that if I go with you, that is it. There is no undoing it. If there was even a tiny spark of doubt in him about us. It will go out?” Her voice cut into his thoughts, her eyes wide and urgent in the shadows.
“I know.” He’d known that from the moment he’d come upon this plan. He’d known that taking her would be the last straw, but he couldn’t leave her hear to pay the price for a crime not committed, she didn’t deserve to have her soul slowly killed.
Added to that was the strange certainty that this was what needed to be done. She needed to be gotten to safety the role she had to play far from finished.
“I scared.” She admitted. Those were hard words for her, so hard, hard because it had taken the accusation of adultery to convince her that her husband was truly lost to them. “I don’t want you hurt because of me.” She added finally.
Obi-wan, nodded once, understanding all to well. She was filled with fear, and anxiety, understandable. “I know” he murmured drawing her into his arms, he tried to convey without the use of words that it was safe, that she would be protected.
“Don’t worry, I’ll take care of you.” He whispered softly.
He drew back to study her face in the darkness. Her eyes held the hint of unshed tears, and he promised himself he would never willingly cause her pain.
“On my honour.” He whispered fiercely, pressing a tender kiss to her brow as she wrapped her arms around him once more. They stood like that for a long endless moment. Neither moving content to loss themselves in the safety and warmth they offered each other.
"Padme," he whispered softly, reaching forward to run a single digit along her silken cheek. She sighed and turned away, making a distressed sound as she tried to distance herself from his touch.
"Where almost there, my lady." He said, reaching forward to gently shake her shoulder. The young women’s sleepy brown eyes fluttered open. She fixed him with a curious look caught halfway between delight and annoyance. After all he had been the one to insist she get some sleep and now he was waking her up.
He chuckled a little, finding the statement on her face endearing. He found his hand with a will of it’s own reaching forward to tuck that same strand of wayward hair behind her ear. He caught the slight edge of the shiver that passed through her at his touch. He couldn’t seem to stop the wave of pleasure that whispered through him as she leaned into his touch.
‘Master Kenobi; Help you this will not.’ He sighed hearing the voice of Yoda in the back of his mind. No, feeding this attachment to her would not aid him in what was to come. Already the thought of leaving her somewhere, even somewhere safe did not sit easily with him. He knew that when she realized his job was only to bring her to safety, that she would be upset.
This however, could not be altered, his duty was to attempt to reach his Padawan. Obi Wan owed Anakin one last chance, and he couldn’t help but feel he owed that much to the women who was depending on him to protect her. She seemed to be getting around, and Obi-wan headed toward the front of the ship. Sitting down in the pilot’s chair he began to turn controls as he readied to enter the large green planet's atmosphere.
The planet was green and humid, everywhere she looked where trees and rich lush jungle life. She had no idea where they where but it was beautiful. Yet there was something almost ominous about the huge temples that dotted the landscape. Her dark eyes caught on the huge pyramid like structures that rose toward the sky. Something about them tickled at the back of her mind. A history lesson about a distant jungle moon. She sighed, wondering if there were people on this planet. Obi-wan easily landed the small craft on one of the flat courtyard like spaces between the huge structures. She suddenly didn't want to move.
She wanted to stay on the ship. She knew that what was left of the Jedi council waited down there for her and Obi-wan. She couldn't shake the feeling that something was going to happen, something was going to go wrong. She glanced toward Obi-wan, not sure why she suddenly wanted to take the handsome Jedi in her arms and never let him go. She glanced away from him as he flicked switches shutting down the craft. Her eyes caught on the darkness of the jungle around them.
"My Lady." She jumped slightly at the sound of Obi-Wan's smooth voice. She turned to face her Jedi protector, nodding once before moving to follow him. She wanted to stop to make herself look presentable, only she knew it would do little good. She hadn’t exactly packed for presentation. She realized only after a moment that the Jedi was studying her with concerned eyes. 'Get a move on girl' she told herself in annoyance. No time to worry about such things.
He paused again just as he opened the crafts hatch. "My Lady." he said taking her hand and leading her down the platform. She sighed the formality of it all seeming so very foreign between them as if a wall was slowly being erected. He was a cool, detached Jedi Knight suddenly, and she wasn’t at all sure she liked it.
He paused for a moment and turned her to face him slowly. "Padme." He spoke her given name softly. She tried to stop the tiny thrill that whispered through her at the intensity in his eyes.
"When we enter the temple, this can not be." He scent a warm rush of tenderness through the bond that flashed brightly between them, before the Jedi carefully folded it neatly into the back of his mind. She felt bereft for a moment and cold. Lonely.
"I am right here." he said giving her shoulders a gentle squeeze, before leaning forward and pressing a tender kiss to her brow. She nodded once forcing herself to calm. Taking care to wear the mantle of calm indifference she'd spent years perfecting.
She sat quietly in the corridor outside the meeting room that held her protector and what was left of the Jedi. She shivered feeling suddenly very cold. She wrapped the heavy robe around herself more tightly taking, comfort in its scratchy texture. It reminded her of Obi-wan, the feel of Jedi robes rubbing against her skin as he held her.
Before he’d left her alone she’d promised him to stay put. From what she could tell it appeared that the Jedi were now using these strange temples as a temporary hiding place. Somehow she thought that like her and Obi-wan, the others were not staying in one place for long. The Empire, guided by Palpatine and Anakin was slowly exterminating what was once the peacekeepers for the Republic. She shivered to think of the lives already lost, so few remained. She sighed, a deep sadness whispering through her.
She reached almost instinctively for the warmth of Obi-Wan’s presence, in spite of his instruction not to do so while they where here. She could not help herself, he was comfort when nothing else was. Something was wrong. She could feel it.
She shivered, already knowing that whatever it was that Jedi Kenobi learned she wasn’t going to like it, because he clearly did not like it. She’d felt his shock through their strange link before it had been closed harshly, like a window suddenly falling on over inquisitive fingers. She studied the doorway she knew he would walk out of at any moment with intensity as though the weight of her stare could force them to move faster. She didn’t feel safe here anymore and she wasn’t happy about the fact that she’d just been cut off from the only calming thing she had.
To add to her already tangled nerves she knew instinctively that he wouldn’t have cut her off with out a reason, what ever he’d learned it was bad. She stood as the electronic doors opened revealing Obi-wan. The Jedi looked calm, his statement giving nothing away. She wasn’t exactly sure how to react to this man. He barely resembled the man who’d entered the room hours before.
"Were leaving." Was all he muttered as he walked by her easily capturing her arm and pulling her along behind him.
"What’s going on?" she demanded unsettled by the way he was acting. "Obi-wan?"
"On? My Lady, How long have you known?" He demanded stopping and studying her face intently.
"Known what?" Now she was lost, what was she supposed to have known?
"Doesn’t Anakin know?" He demanded, his voice sounding harsh.
"Know what." She jerked away from him and glared at him, upset at being handled roughly.
"You’re pregnant Padme," he said finally.
"What?" Her voice and eyes held shock.
"You really had no idea." She shook her head no, and Obi-wan realized his mistake. He’d been blinded by his own reaction to the news. The strange combination of jealousy and pain, he’d assumed that she would have told him something that important. Suddenly Obi Wan wasn’t sure that Master Yoda was incorrect in his assumption that his feelings for Padme ran far deeper then he’d realized. He was jealous, not so much because she had been Anakin’s wife, but that his children found a safe harbor under her heart.
Padme turned on her heel, and headed down the hall, not watching where she was going. He quickly followed her only pausing slightly at the doorway to the woman’s room. He heard the unmistakable sound of retching. He quickly followed her into one of the stalls, leaning down and gathering her hair away from her face. He didn’t speak; instead he tried to send waves of calm and reassurance to her.
"You shouldn’t be in here." She managed between gasps for air. She tried to shake of his touch.
"Are you all right?" he asked, when it was clear she was finished. She stood, stiffly facing him. Her eyes held the hint of tears, but she blinked them away, he watched her change before his eyes. The steel he’d always known lay under the soft exterior of the woman before him was back. She wrapped the self-possession around herself like a cloak. She moved toward the sinks and filling a cup with water quickly rinsed her mouth out.
"What do I do? This changes everything does it not?" She asked as she turned to face him once more.
She studied his face, hearing everything he said, and so much that he did not. "I must look a terrible fright." She said trying to lighten the intensity she saw in his concerned blue green gaze.
"You look lovely as ever, My Lady." He reached forward to take her trembling hand in his own.
"What now, Jedi Kenobi." She asked, forcing herself to use his title, needing to put distance between them, now more then ever. She heard his breath catch slightly and wondered at it. The handsome Jedi studied her as they walked; she wondered fleetingly what he was thinking. The questions remained unanswered as her curious thoughts were slapped away by mental shields. She glanced at the Jedi sharply.
"It is for the best my lady. Such a connection can lead only to danger for both of us." He spoke the words mechanically and she knew instinctively that they where what he’d been told to tell her. She fought back tears that threatened to fall. Did they hate her so much, blame her so completely for Anakin’s fall that they would take this from her as well.
She was no fool, she knew that the Jedi council blamed her for what had happened. Part of it was true; it was her fault that Palpatine had been elected into the position he later used to gain the nearly unheard of power he had now.
She wanted to beg him to let her back in to not take from her this strange connection. She’d grown accustomed to it. She didn’t want to miss the slight hum of his essence at the back of her mind. For the best? Who’s best? Hers? Somehow she didn’t think so. There was more to this, more then what he’d let her glimpse at. What wasn’t he telling her?
"What happens to us now?" she asked finally, glancing toward him as they headed outside. He sighed, they where going to be staying on the jungle moon. Master Yoda would be leaving this humid planet soon. This place was out of the way and the jungle would mask them.
"We stay here, until it’s safe." He said finally, “We will have to figure out away to hide the children once they are born." He said watching her face for reaction. She did not disappoint.
"We can’t stay here." She said, glancing around the space around them. "What do you mean they?"
"There are two," he said glancing at her, seeing the shock on her face. He knew finding out that you would have one child when it was the unexpected was a shock, but to find out that there were two….Well that was shock enough. For a moment he caught her desperate wish that Anakin was there to share this news with her. That he would watch them grow and change with her.
"I am sorry." He said finally, "We will stay here, everything we need is here. Master Yoda apparently was aware of your condition and had arrangements made."
“Arrangements?” she asked as they walked down the cut stone steps.
“Yes, we will be staying here, in the temple, Rooms have been set. It will not be the luxury in which you are accustomed but it will be safe.” She nodded once, feeling her hackles rise as his inference that she required plush accommodations.
“I am not a Queen any longer Obi-wan, nor am I a senator.”