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Cold Spell

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The room was quiet save for the storm brewing inside, roiling like the sea. It crackled occasionally, sparks that jolted against one another in a frenetic dance. Time drew out, listing endlessly back and forth, a ship in an endless ocean, a leaf in an unending gale. The air surged with restless energy, a nearly corporeal force of nature. 

Of course, that’s exactly what it was. The Force, that is. 

Anakin Skywalker was worrying like a mother hen, and the Force was being churned into a frenzy around him.

Ahsoka was worried too, but mostly she was just cold. She was born on Shili, and, like most of her people, preferred warm weather. They lived in the scrublands, where the sun baked everything into shades of brown and animals hid in the tall grasses, clustering under the sparse trees in hopes of finding shade. That was a biological part of her heritage, and though she was a Jedi, there was no changing biology. Her internal thermo gauge did not like their current predicament. 

She and Anakin were hunkered in a space that was less “room” and more “two and a half cave walls and many piles of still smoking debris and some ripped tarp.” Somehow he was pacing, though his long legs hardly allowed him two strides in any direction. They were on frozen and barely notable Jentawui, completely by accident and entirely underdressed for it. They had been escorting the Bothan senator back to Bothawui, and on their way home had accidentally set off a mine left by Grievous during their recent battle. The hyperdrive had already been primed when they were hit, and if anyone who was not Anakin Skywalker had been at the helm, their small ship would have suffered a catastrophic explosion. Anakin had somehow crash landed them and about two thirds of their ship onto icy Jentawui far below. Ahsoka was grateful not to be dead, but she wished they had crashed somewhere a little more temperate. Plus, she was worried. 

They had been hit, crash landed, lacked proper clothing to deal with the frosty weather, and Master Obi Wan had taken the single intact parka left in the wreckage of their ship’s storage and immediately volunteered to go out in search of their long range communicator, which had been ripped off in the turbulent landing. It couldn’t have landed too far, and so Ahsoka and her Master did what they could in the mean time to set up shelter. 

That had been over an hour ago, and Anakin Skywalker had been pacing for nearly the whole time. Ahsoka was beginning to feel on edge.

She bent and gathered some of the snow at her feet and threw it at her Master. It hit him squarely over his ear, and he turned to glare at her, snow dripping down the side of his face and caught in clumps on his eyelashes. She burst into laughter and could swear she saw his mouth twitch just before he tackled her, his fingers reaching out to tickle her as she laughed. 

He abated eventually, looking distinctly less stormy, and she used the opportunity to sit next to him and pull the side of his cloak around her own shoulders, shivering a little. He looked at her in surprise, as if only just realizing that she didn’t have a Jedi cloak of her own, and put his arm around her. 

“I’m worried about him, Snips. He should have been back by now. He should never have been here!” Obi Wan Kenobi was never meant to be on this mission. He had returned only recently from some mysterious and disastrous mission with Senator Bail Organa and had not returned whole. Vokara Che, the terrifying Chief Healer of the Jedi, had allowed him to leave the Halls of Healing, but had given him strict orders not to leave the Temple grounds or go on any solo missions. He needed his rest. Ahsoka wasn’t sure how Master Obi Wan had done it, but he had somehow convinced Master Yoda to let him accompany his former padawan on what should have been a simple mission that promised neither violence nor exertion. 

She looked at the rubble around them and tried to remember a single mission of theirs that hadn’t ended in danger, disaster, or dire injuries. She couldn’t.  She also knew that they couldn’t go out in search of Obi Wan. The winds of Jentawui were harsh and biting, slinging sharp shards of ice in gusts and gales that could barely be held at bay by a thick parka, and he had taken their only one. 

“He’ll come back, Skyguy. Master Obi Wan always does,” she said with surety she wasn’t certain she felt. She watched the snow through cracks in their lean-to’s walls as Anakin tried again to reach Obi Wan through the Force.

Their bond was still strong, a bright golden line between the two of them. Most masters and padawans severed the training bond when the padawan reached knighthood, but in the tumultuous events surrounding Anakin’s knighting after the battle on Geonosis, they had never gotten around to it. It only grew from there, stronger with each day they fought shoulder to shoulder and protected Ahsoka, their men, and the republic. The Jedi weren’t meant to form attachments, but Obi Wan and Anakin's bond flowed clear as day to anyone who could read the Force, a glowing testament to just how close they were. All three of them knew that the Council disapproved, but then again, the whole galaxy knew that Anakin Skywalker and Obi Wan Kenobi were near unstoppable together. They would always be, as long as they lived.

Ahsoka leaned her head against her Master and said with more certainty, “He is coming back.” 

She was right, as usual. 

When Obi Wan finally trudged in, over an hour after he had left, he was smiling gently around his bruises in a way that shone in exact contrast to the scowl Anakin wore. Ahsoka half expected Anakin to tell Obi Wan off for being gone so long, but was instead surprised when he brushed the collected snow off Obi Wan’s shoulders and sat him down close to the still glowing embers of their hyperdrive. 

“I’m fine, Anakin, really,” Obi Wan proclaimed, but allowed Anakin to fuss anyway. “I couldn’t track down the communicator, but I found a small Bothan settlement not far away and managed to get a message to the Order. Senator Polo Se’lab is sending a ship that should be here before sunset and can take us back to Coruscant. I suppose he was grateful for our escort after all.”

“Obi Wan. Master. I’m glad we can go home, but you should have let me go instead! I could have found the communicator! Master Che made me swear not to let you make your injuries worse and look at you! You look terrible, Obi Wan.”

Anakin was frowning down at him, breath rising in clouds of steam around his face and making him look a little like a krayt dragon.  Obi Wan looked up at them both from where he was sat, a quip ready at his tongue, but after a glance at Ahsoka’s less irate but equally worried and dubious expression, he sighed. 

“I suppose you’re right. Ahsoka, your montrals are beginning to turn bluer than usual. Come here, the both of you.” He opened out the heavy parka like a cloak and waited for them to settle on either side of him before draping it over their shoulders. 

“I can't imagine I look that bad, I trimmed my beard this morning!” 

Anakin shoved his shoulder, gently, and Ahsoka smiled as she felt the warmth grow again in their bond and in her bonds with both her Masters as they rested together. She didn’t feel quite so cold anymore.