[identity profile] seal-girl.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] starwarsficfest
Title – Payment In Blood.
Author – Sealgirl in [livejournal.com profile] seal_girl
Fandom
– Star Wars Prequel Trilogy
Prompt
– “Ensemble Cast. Obi-Wan kills Anakin. “Payment in Blood.”
Word Count
– 1085
Rating
– PG-13
Summary
– (AU) Obi-Wan only sees the consequences of his actions when he has the least chance of doing anything to redeem himself.
A/N
– Written for the [livejournal.com profile] starwarsficfest, 25th July 2008. It’s not “ensemble” at all, and yet another one that I didn't claim.

Payment in Blood


An old man sits and waits at the end of the world.

He doesn’t know why he is still hiding. Perhaps it is just convenient. Perhaps it is just habit. But he waits for them to come and find him.

He will be found eventually. He deserves to be found, and now, after all these years of tortuous waiting, perhaps he is even looking forward to the final confrontation.

A long time ago, it had all seemed so straightforward. In the aftermath of the destruction of the Jedi Order, it had seemed to be so obvious that, for once in his life, he thought he could foresee all the consequences.

Padme was dead and her twins were separated. Luke and Leia were to be hidden from the Emperor and kept apart; one on Alderaan, and one here on Tatooine. Sometimes on a clear morning, he could still remember them as they had been on that day, babies lying in the arms of himself and Bail Organa, their whole futures still to be uncovered.

Maybe that had been his mistake, separating them. Such children, and so powerful within the Force, were bound to find each other anyway. Maybe keeping them apart had just served to drive them closer together, in the end.

No.

He knows his own mistake.

He thinks of it every single day: The man he had known as a child, and taught to be a Jedi. The Chosen One, Anakin Skywalker, his closest friend, his brother and his betrayer, traitor to the Jedi Order and to freedom in the Galaxy. And the man he killed.

Yet, in a sense Anakin had fulfilled his purpose more so that Obi-Wan could ever have understood. For a few shining moments, the Force was back in balance as the Chosen One had ultimately destroyed both the Jedi and the Sith.

For when the Emperor discovered that his new apprentice was dead, the whole Galaxy shuddered with him. The Red Wrath of the Emperor: that was what they called it. After that there were very, very few planets that would dare stand against the might of the Empire. The few that did were soon just a memory.

But that had left the Sith Lord weak, both physically and with the Force.

It was only a matter of time before something, or someone, came along to fill that void.

He didn’t know the details, or how they found each other, but he knew that they did. He knew also that the Emperor had a hand that matter, though it ultimately did him no good. Leia was as adept at politics as her foster father, and she had learned the lessons of life in an Empire very well indeed. And Luke was young and strong, and full of righteous anger, just like his father before him. It did not take them long to work out who’s side they were on.

And when that happened, the Force spiralled out of control in the bloodbath that followed, and Obi-Wan had screamed in delirious agony for days. Alderaan was obliterated in a matter of moments, hundred of millions of voices silenced. Planet after planet followed it into oblivion and no one in the Galaxy could do anything to stop them.

Never before had there been two Sith such as these; there was no Master and Apprentice as there had been before. Instead they were two equals, bound in love and blood and the Force to outdo each other, laying the Galaxy to waste as they went.

Maybe he should not have tried to keep them apart, maybe he should have kept them closer, and tried to keep them out of trouble. But he could not bear to teach them the ways of the Force, or maybe in time admit to them what he had done.

He knows his own mistake, he know the terrible violation of the Force and his own moral code that caused this fate, as he replays the rationale in his mind each day.

It had been a terrible choice. How was he supposed to choose between two equal evils when his mind was so clouded with pain, loss and betrayal?

Anakin lay in front of him, writhing and screaming obscenities. He clawed the ground with the bones of his fingers and the stench of burnt hair and sulphur filled the air. His legs were gone, his flesh on fire, his eyes showing the madness of the Dark Side that lay inside.

But more than that was the pain: Obi-Wan could not turn his back on someone in such horrendous pain. It would be a merciful act to stop the pain, maybe the very last thing he could do for his lost friend, not to let him suffer. He couldn’t leave Anakin to suffer, even if he was a Sith. He would be dead soon anyway from the fumes and his injuries. Not even Anakin would survive for long in the blacken inferno.

In the back of his mind was also the knowledge of his duty to the dead. Anakin had walked along the halls of the Temple where he had once been held in honour, killing everything that breathed; Masters, Knights and younglings all the same. Anakin was a Sith Lord now, an enemy of the Galaxy and the betrayer of the whole Jedi Order.

And Obi-Wan killed Sith Lords; he’d killed one before. It was his duty. And Jedi must do their duty. Surely the Galaxy would thank him?

But still, somehow, he had faltered. He had failed, not only himself, but the Galaxy and the Force. He’d killed a defenceless man in cold blood and convinced himself that it had been the correct thing to do; and in doing so he had destroyed himself, as well as everything he had fought for.

He could only guess at what might have happened if he had turned his back on Anakin that day and just walked away. Certainly, it could be no worse that this, no worse than a Galaxy in flames and the long, lonely wait for the end.

He had no doubt that they would find him. It was as inevitable as the rise of the twin suns on Tatooine.

So, as an old, broken man, he sits and waits at the end of the world.

He doesn’t know why he is still hiding. Perhaps it is just convenient. Perhaps it is just habit. But he waits for them to come and find him.

= = =


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