Tonight was the night. The night of the year were she didn't have to hide who she was anymore, not from her friends, her superiors...
Or her Master.
Ahsoka crept out of bed being careful not to wake Anakin over at the other side of the room. She reached underneath her mat for the tubes of pink, purple and blue face paints she had bought from a local Coruscanti shop last week. The polite shopkeeper had asked if she was going to the parade next week. She had already sussed it out, Ahsoka had said no and that she just liked the colours.
Ahsoka didn't like the fact that she loved both men and women in a sexual way. At first she simply thought it was a phase, but she was now 16. Her body had matured, and it knew what it wanted.
Ahsoka wasn't ashamed, she just didn't like it to be...
Ahsoka grabbed her bag and made sure her Master was still asleep before leaving their room at the Temple.
Little did she know, Anakin recognised those meaningful colours as soon as Ahsoka walked out the shop with them clutched in her hand, desperately trying to hide them. But Anakin knew.
Anakin opened up his eyes and got out of bed, qùickly putting on his robes and grabbing his lightsaber, he needed to make sure that his Snips was safe out there. There are a lot of creeps out in the streets of Coruscant, always looking for a girl to take home, whether they liked it or not...
Ahsoka had been Cat called many times, most of them weren't even on Coruscant either. But Anakin had always been there to make sure she was okay. The first few times she was really upset about it but now she knows that if they try to touch her she has permission to beat them up or even worse, decapitate them with her lightsaber.
As Anakin walked towards the door he noticed that Ahsoka didn't take her lightsabers with her. "For kriffs sake Ahsoka, I knew you could be stupid sometimes but not that stupid!" Anakin rushed out of the door, running for the nearest speeder.
Ahsoka was already speeding through the Coruscant streets on foot, looking out for the colour and the fireworks that she loved all too well. Her feet carried her at an extraordinary speed, letting her lekku dance in the air as they were carried by the wind. She loved being carefree, not worrying about the ongoing war or getting captured by separatist dummies. She could be a normal teenager.
Ahsoka turned the final corner and she saw it. The bursts of colur that littered the streets, she was there. The pride parade, it only happened once every standard year and this was the only year she happened to still be on Coruscant for the exciting event. It would be more exciting if somebody she knew was there though, but that was okay. Ahsoka had always been an isolated person, she was used to it by now.
Ahsoka crouched down at the side of the street and took out her small but sturdy pocket mirror, she examined her face. Ahsoka carefully took each paint in her hands and used it on her togruta markings.
"Pink." Ahsoka spoke softly as she closed the lid. "Purple then blue." She smiled, she was ready.
Ahsoka wandered into the crowd of people as she attached her fabric flag to her montrals, securing them. She quickly spotted her people as they invited her into their group, seeing to it that she wasn't all alone for the parade.
They danced partied and joked around for the duration of the parade and she made some friends for once. Too bad she would probably never see them again.
Anakin watched over Ahsoka from a distance, shielding himself so well that even she didn't detect his presence. He smiled, he loved to see his little Snips happy. He was so proud of her, he knew that the world could be a cruel place for people in her community, but he never saw a thing wrong with being gay. They're just people like the rest of us.
Anakin chuckled as Ahsoka started to dance with her new friends, nearly tripping over her two left feet every 10 seconds. That was when Ahsoka's friends went into the bar and Anakin's heart dropped for her. Ahsoka wasn't nearly old enough to drink and she knew that it was never a good idea too get herself drunk after all the hangovers she had seen Anakin have.
Ahsoka kept dancing though, twirling the flag around in her hands singing along to the music. She inched a bit too close to the edge of the street for Anakin's liking and he moved a bit closer to her area, just in case. Ahsoka had let her guard down, she didn't hear the force screaming at her to get away from the dark streets.
Anakin sensed it, he saw Ahsoka's flailing arms as she was tugged into the alley by her tunic. Anakin sprung into action running across the streets to get to his padawan quickly.
Ahsoka fought and screamed in the faces of the cruel men who were holding her still, restrained on the cold concrete floor. She could only feel pain, she was kicked and punched at and heard the screaming of another man as the ones who were attacking her quickly scattered. Ahsoka curled up into a ball as she heard a fight taking place behind her.
Anakin beat up the last man, the other's had run off like cowards. The man tumbled to the floor as Anakin delivered a blow to his stomach. "You disgust me." Anakin spat out as he quickly knocked the cruel person out cold.
By now Ahsoka had edged herself into the corner and hugged her knees whilst clutching at the now torn flag with her bloodied fingers. "Oh Snips." Anakin rushed over as Ahsoka quickly dumped the flag behind her and attempted to remove the face paint by scratching at her battered and bruised face. "Hey, hey don't do that!" Anakin tore her hands away from her face, that proud face, now reduced to tears.
"Ar-Are you m-mad at me M-Master." Ahsoka cried as sobs racked her body. Anakin grabbed his cloak and quickly wrapped it around his padawan.
"Of course not Ahsoka, tell me where it hurts Snips." Anakin shifted his padawan onto his lap and gently stroked her bruising lekku.
"Everywhere." She cried.
"Everywhere?" Anakin quickly scoured the visible parts of her skin detecting bruises popping up everywhere.
"Mmh." Ahsoka whimpered and began to regain her composure.
"Let me get you home." Anakin worried for his padawan, what if he hadn't been there for her, what if he was to late? He knew well what they could have done to a vulnerable female...
Anakin quickly pushed that thought out of his head not wanting to worry his padawan, all that mattered is that she was with him now and everything would be okay. He stood up and slung Ahsoka's bag over his shoulder whilst stuffing the flag in it and gently picked her up off the ground.
"Im sorry if I have disappointed you Master." Ahsoka mumbled into his robes as he walked towards the speeder.
"You have done nothing to disappoint me Snips, you have made me proud." Anakin smiled down at his padawan as he laid her down in the back seat of the speeder.
"But Master I-"
"We will talk about it later okay." Anakin soothed his padawan and took off into the skies, reaching his hand into the back of the speeder to hold hers.
Anakin landed the speeder by the temple and plucked Ahsoka from the back of the vehicle. "I take it you don't want to go to the halls of healing?" Anakin stopped at the bottom of the temple stairs.
"No." Ahsoka looked over at the GAR barracks beside the temple.
"Do you want to go and see the boy's? Im sure Kix would be happy to take a look at you." Anakin asked quietly.
"Yes." Ahsoka replied.
"Alright then. Just this once." Anakin turned to his left and began the small trek to the GAR barracks, once inside he softly knocked at the 501st door.
"General?" A groggy Rex answered the door and quickly noticed Ahsoka and her injuries. He ushered them into the barracks and into the corner of the large room. "Wait here, let me go and get Kix." Anakin nodded and hugged Ahsoka to his chest.
"You're gonna be fine Snips."
"It's just some bruises Master I'm sure-"
"I just want to make sure, do you have any idea what those men would have done had I not been there!" Anakin whispered, he wasn't angry, just upset for his padawan.
"Kix here General what can I- kriffing hell Commander what did you do!" Kix led them into a small back room with a bunk in the corner. "Where were you Commander and what happened?!" Kix was very alarmed at the bruises and the blood on Ahsoka's body.
Ahsoka just stared at the ceiling. 'Can you tell them?' Ahsoka sent through the Master-Padawan bond.
"She was at the parade in town, a group of men grabbed her and violently attacked her, If I had not been there." Anakin paused and gulped. "I don't even want to think about what they might've done to her." Anakin placed ahsoka down on the bunk and took off the cloak covering her shaking body.
"Okay General, apart from the bruises do you think she may have any other injuries?" Kix rolled up Ahsoka's tunic and examined the bruises that were forming on her stomach. Ahsoka whimpered when he touched them.
"I thought her ankle looked kinda banged up but other than that I don't think so." Anakin perched himself on the edge of the bed and held Ahsoka's shaking hand.
"Your gonna be fine vod'ika. I'll fix you up." Kix gave Ahsoka a reassuring pat on the shoulder. "I will be back in a minute, sit tight." Kix left to go and get his medical bag he left under his bunk.
"So, do you want to talk about it?" Anakin stroked Ahsoka's hand and sent calming waves through the force, reminding her that she wasn't in any kind of trouble.
"I think you should have put two and two together by now." Ahsoka sighed, waiting for the whole attachment lecture. But it never came.
"Attraction isn't attachment Snips, there's nothing wrong with liking girls too." Anakin smiled and gave Ahsoka a kiss on the knuckle of the hand he was holding.
"You're taking this better than I anticipated. I don't think it's normal for a Jedi to-" Anakin put his finger to her lips silencing her for the time being.
"Of course it's normal Ahsoka, you are a living being. You're going to get urges like that. It's natural."
Kix wandered back into the room, this time with Rex too. Rex handed Ahsoka a warm wash cloth to scrub off the remaining paint, blood and dirt off of her face and lekku.
"I'm glad you're okay vod'ika." Rex helped Ahsoka get the last of the grime off her face and gave her a wide smile. "We are all very proud of you."
"For getting myself beat up?" Ahsoka laughed but winced at Kix took off her shoes to get a good look at her ankle.
"No, for being brave. It's a scary world out there Commander!" And then Rex hugged her. "For being who you are."
And then Ahsoka shed tears, no, she wailed. Crying with happiness, knowing that she was accepted.
"Did I say something wrong?" Rex asked worriedly as Ahsoka basically clawed at his armour. Just needing the comfort of a hug. A reassuring smile from Anakin told Rex 'No, you made her happy' and Rex tried to hug her back but the armour just got in the way.
Rex lightly pushed Ahsoka off him. "One minute vod'ika." Rex shrugged off the armour on his upper half in record time and hugged his vod'ika, his sister.
"Aww no hugs for us?" Fives appeared at the doorway followed by Echo, Hardcase and Jessie.
"Why aren't you asleep!" Hissed Kix whilst trying to shove them out.
"No Kix! It's okay, they can stay.," Ahsoka shrieked. Opening up her arms wider to accommodate the extra 4 clones which immediately piled on top of her. Ahsoka yelped in pain and the clones practically fell off of her.
The room suddenly filled with commotion as Anakin and Kix were trying to see if Ahsoka was okay and the rest of the clones could be heard saying 'Commander we are so sorry!'
"Don't worry boys, I brought that upon myself." Ahsoka sniffled, wiping the tears from her cheeks.
"Everyone apart from Rex and General Skywalker OUT NOW!" Kix barked. He outranked everyone when it came to anything medical about any troops or commanding officers.
"Ugh Kix you boomer." Fives led the others out of the room.
"What did he just call me?" Kix didn't understand.
"You wouldn't get it." Ahsoka giggled. Kix rolled his eyes and resumed placing bandages around Ahsoka's left ankle.
"Just a sprain, with the bacta it should heal overnight." Kix tugged Ahsoka's shoe back on and focussed on her lekku. "Massive headache I presume." Kix carefully held Ahsoka's left lek as he examined the dark purple bruise.
"Yeah." Ahsoka squeezed her eyes shut and held her Master's hand even tighter.
"Sorry, I know they're really sensitive. I will just give the left one a bacta treatment and a bandage, right one doesn't look too bad. What about the back one?" Kix urged Ahsoka onto her side and Kix's neutral face turned to one of shock. "Sorry Commander but could you possibly lie on your chest for me."
"Oh my stars." Rex sat down near the top of the bed and took Ahsoka's other hand.
"How is the pain right now? Scale of 1 to 10." Anakin looked at his padawan with worry.
"Maybe a 7. What's wrong?" Ahsoka tried getting up but Anakin held her down. "Master!"
"Just stay still Snips." Anakin looked down at the rear lek in horror, it was all purple, not a single trace of blue or white to be seen.
"How hard did the men kick you Commander?" Kix got out a few ice packs and held them on the bruised lek.
"Pretty hard, I mean lekku are meant for protection. Was either them or my back." Ahsoka laughed. "What. How bad is it."
"Pretty bad Snips." Anakin gently brought her up to her knees and led her over to the small mirror and took off the ice packs.
"LANGUAGE SNIPS!" Anakin barked.
"Gah, not so loud Skyguy!" Ahsoka eased herself back on the bed and laid on her chest as Kix wrapped up her lekku.
"I wonder where she got the language from General Skywalker." Rex giggled and grabbed Ahsoka's hand, cracking her up.
"If you weren't 501st you would be sent back to Kamino on the spot Captain Rex!"
"All right you're good to go Commander but take it easy and see Shaak Ti about those lekku alright!" Kix packed away his things and left the room.
"Oh and next time you want to go to a parade, just ask me." Anakin helped Ahsoka stand up as she slung one arm over him and the other over Rex.
"I will Master, don't worry." She smiled. For the first time in forever...
She was accepted.