“Well,” Anakin says, draping himself artfully against one of the columns framing his landing pad. There’s a faint evening breeze in Coruscant that stirs the wisps of his hair, just cool enough that he can feel goosebumps break out over his exposed chest as his nipples harden. He considers tying his robe closed, but he knows perfectly well the pleasant picture he makes, and why ruin someone else’s good view over a little discomfort? “While I can’t say this is the first time a Jedi has shown up at my door, this is certainly the first time four have come at once.”
Mace Windu’s eye twitches. Anakin can’t stop the smirk from flickering across his face even if he wanted to. “How delightfully….repressed of you,” he continues, dropping into a deep bow as the four Jedi dismount from their speeders and come forward.
“Good evening, Companion Skywalker,” one of the other Jedi greets him calmly, hand extended. Anakin doesn’t recognize her, as he had only met the Jedi Council once when he was a child. An impactful event, to be sure, but the only people he can really remember from that day are Windu, Yoda. Qui-Gon Jinn. His padawan--Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Good thing Windu and Yoda are here then. “Good evening, my lady,” he responds, slipping into his Companion facade easily. Be polite, be charming, his instructor's voice murmurs in hiis head. They already want you--make them want you more . He kisses the back of her hand when she gamely lets him hold it. Windu scowls.
“Inside we should go, for this conversation,” Yoda announces. “For you, a proposition we have.”
“Of course,” Anakin says quite graciously. “I am something of an expert on being propositioned.”
Not waiting for a verbal response--Windu’s pinched expression being more than enough--Anakin turns to lead them into his apartment. He recognizes a business deal when he sees one, which is a shame because he had put on his best, silkiest, and most suggestive robes when C3PO had received a transmission request from the Jedi Council. But considering Yoda had shown up--well. Anakin turned very few paying patrons away from his quarters as a general rule, but he wouldn’t have even let that little green troll get off his ship before sending him away.
Anakin can’t help but shiver in faint disgust at even the thought of sex and Yoda . He truly hates his mind sometimes.
He sinks gracefully into a plush high-backed chair, crossing his legs as he observes the jedi in his living room. This is his actual living room, not the opulent parlor he used for guests, but the Jedi still look vaguely uncomfortable. Amidst the red silk decor and golden accents, the Jedis’ beige and white robes stand out like a sore thumb. “I’m listening,” he says, tracing his hands over the embroidering of his garment in a distracted manner. It’s all calculated, though. You have my attention , he is saying with just the drag of the tips of his fingers. For now .
“Companion Skywalker,” the Nautolan Jedi Anakin doesn't know begins “You must know that we are currently at war.”
Anakin reins in his initial reaction, which is frank disbelief. " You must know we’re at war" ? Yeah, that's a bit hard to miss. Clearly these people think he doesn’t think about or do anything but fuck. He could correct the downright offensive misconception, of course, or he could--
“Yes, it’s been all my senators can talk about,” he says with a demure smile. “While they can talk, that is.”
He wonders if he can make that little vein in Windu’s head burst before they leave. It’s a challenge he’s happy to set for himself.
“Yes, well,” the Jedi stutters and then recovers with admirable speed. “The strength of the Separatist movement grows daily. Planets we felt were safely ours have been swayed to their cause.”
“Perhaps it’s a good cause,” Anakin shrugs languidly, settling further back into his chair.
“You don’t understand what you say,” Windu bites out. Anakin feels his hackles rise at the tone, but he can’t--shouldn’t--break character before he figures out what they want from him.
“I hardly ever do,” is what he decides to say, waving an artfully careless hand. “I also don’t understand what the war has to do with me. Is this a recruitment drive?” He levels a smile that’s only slightly bitter at Windu. “Now, all these years later, you want me to become a jedi?”
Perhaps sensing in the Force that Windu and Anakin both are close to coming to blows, the last jedi intercedes. “An analysis of the numbers and timeline shows beyond reproof that the majority of the planets that changed allegiance did so after meeting with one man. The Separatists are calling him the Negotiator. He’s their most popular general.”
Anakin wracks his mind to see if that moniker rings any bells. It doesn’t, but he has a bad feeling about this.
“He’s earned it,” Windu says, looking pained to be giving praise to the enemy. “He’s good at his job. Too good. And we have…come to the conclusion that the Republic war effort would benefit greatly if the Negotiator were to become….indisposed.”
“So dispose him?” Anakin suggests helpfully, unsure why they’re talking about this with him of all people.
“That is not the Jedi’s way,” Windu responds, and Anakin fights the urge to roll his eyes. I wouldn’t know the Jedi way, would I? He almost says but finds the power to hold his tongue.
“Dangerous, he is,” Yoda speaks up for the first time. “Fallen, he has.”
Anakin furrows his eyebrows and turns to the Nautolan Jedi for translation.
“He is a Sith lord,” they explain. “A Fallen Jedi who draws on the dark side for power. It would be, quite frankly, almost impossible to kill him.”
Yoda’s ears droop. “One of our best, he was,” he says sadly.
Anakin opens his mouth to ask what this all has to do with him, but Windu speaks first, looking directly at him with a grimace. “If he were to be...distracted...professionally….” He trails off, raising his eyebrows.
Anakin has to laugh, relaxing into his chair and dropping his Companion persona completely. “I’m sorry,” he says between snorts. “You’ve come here….the leading minds behind our war effort….to ask me to kriff a Separatist for...for what? The betterment of the galaxy? You want me to lie back and think of the Republic?” He calms down slowly, a giggle escaping him. He wipes carefully at his eyes, delicately trying to preserve the kohl he had lined them with. “You have to know this is ridiculous.”
The four Jedi sit straight-backed, expressions grim. “Skywalker--” Windu begins to say.
“A Sith Lord dangerous enough that your Knights and clones can’t take him out? But I, an unarmed, untrained Companion , can?”
“We don’t want you to take him out ,” Windu says, longsufferingly. As if Anakin is the one being unreasonable.
“No, just kriff him well enough he forgets about the war,” Anakin laughs, standing. “I’m sorry to say, I don’t think you could afford me. Have a nice evening, Master Jedi.”
“Unsure of your own abilities are you?” Yoda asks, clearly believing the conversation isn’t over.
“No,” Anakin grits his teeth and then forces himself to relax. He has to sit down. Standing in front of a seated Jedi Council--even if it’s only four members--brings back an uncomfortable sense of deja vu. “I could seduce anyone.”
“Skywalker, we are quickly running out of options,” Windu says, leaning forward. “Do you think we would be here if we were winning this war?”
Those words hang in the air. Anakin--doesn’t want to think about it. Them. What they’re proposing. Why couldn’t he just have told Threepio he didn’t want to entertain tonight? Why had his curiosity gotten the best of him once again? Why, after all these years, was he still so fascinated with all things Jedi that he hadn’t turned them away at the door?
“How do you know he’ll even be interested in me?” Anakin argues back, crossing his arms. Surely if he just pointed out enough holes in their plan, they’ll go away and leave him alone and Anakin can go back to pretending he didn’t choose this penthouse apartment because he could stand on the landing pad and see the Temple in the distance.
“He has well-known preferences,” Windu bites out looking like the words hurt him. Anakin wonders if he’s picturing Anakin and the Negotiator having sex in his mind. He doesn’t know how to feel about it.
Anakin raises an eyebrow.
“Blondes,” Windu continues reluctantly. “And….”
Anakin raises his other eyebrow too.
“Your presence in the Force would do much to....entice him. Darkside users thrive on unrestrained power, and you’re very...bright.”
“Yes,” Anakin murmurs, a twist to his mouth. “I’ve been told I have a midi-chlorian count of over 20,000.” You know that. I know you know that.
“Quite,” Windu says with a pinched expression.
“We are very certain that he would not turn you away, given your--skills, and--appearance,” the Nautolan quickly hurries the conversation along.
“How would I even find him?” Anakin points out one of the largest problems. “It doesn’t sound as if he’s welcome to just waltz onto Coruscant.”
“We’ve fully prepared a false identity for you,” the other Jedi says. “Complete with official papers and an airtight backstory. You would be escorted to the edge of Separatist space by one of our own Destroyers, before leaving from there. Our intelligence reports that there will be a ball in five days time to celebrate the Separatist win on the planet Christophsis. Kenobi will be in attendance.”
“Kenobi?” Anakin asks, his ready protests blown completely out of his mind at this new information. Surely--
“Obi-Wan Kenobi, his name is,” Yoda says, ears as low as they’ve gotten all evening. “Met, you have.”
“ Obi-Wan Kenobi is the Negotiator?” Anakin really must not have heard right.
He’d only met the man in person once when he was a child. Not many words had been exchanged between the two then, what with the Sith on Tatooine, then the Council meeting, then the Battle of Naboo and Qui-Gon Jinn’s death. He remembers standing in front of the funeral pyre, a newly knighted Obi-Wan promising that he would be a Jedi.
It’s almost funny to think that now neither of them is.
At the time, it had only felt like a betrayal. Obi-Wan hadn’t been able to convince the Council to let him take on a padawan of his age at his age, and Anakin had been gently dismissed from the Temple. Padme had helped him, because she was very lovely and beautiful and a good friend. And technically, he had helped win the battle for her planet, so she could negotiate money from the royal coffers to give to Anakin in payment for his pilotship. And so Anakin had built a life for himself on Naboo, freeing his mother and bringing her to the planet on his own dime. He worked first as a mechanic for the palace, and then later for Padme when she became a senator on Coruscant.
Later, much later, of course, he had been propositioned at a bar. He had declined. Then he was propositioned again, this time with credits involved. He….hadn’t declined. As a mechanic, he had made a fair amount of money tinkering with droids. Enough for himself and for his mother. As an escort, a certified Companion, he made...a lot more. Enough to afford the upper levels of the city-planet. Enough to support himself and his mother and his children, should he ever have any. It was a good life. He’d built it for himself.
But the memory of Obi-Wan Kenobi has never been too far from his mind. The Jedi Temple, almost by necessity, has always been very tight-lipped about its knights and their missions. So in some way, the eruption of the Clone War had helped Anakin out greatly when it came to hearing information about Kenobi. Quite suddenly, he was everywhere. A face of the fight.
And what a face it is.
Anakin had no trouble believing that the Council picked Kenobi as their public image, not for his intellect or fighting skills, but because of how handsome he’d become. He’s only a little ashamed to admit, even in the privacy of his own mind, that the senators who had been able to tell him something about Kenobi he didn’t already know left his apartment happier than the others. Not that the others didn’t leave happily--Anakin’s amazing at his job. But the ones where Kenobi features in the conversation? It just means Anakin’s spending the rest of the night thinking about Kenobi, which bleeds into the way he fucks.
It’s not an obsession. It’s not even a problem. Plenty of Companions think of other things while in the midst of a good, hard kriff. It’s natural. It would only be a problem if Anakin called out the wrong name as he came, and he’s never done that. So there.
“You want to pay me to kriff Obi-Wan Kenobi?” Anakin checks.
Windu will probably leave this room with wrinkles permanently etched into his brows. “Yes,” he grits out.
Anakin’s first thought is, of course, I would do that for free . But that’s not a good business model, and Anakin is a consummate professional here. “For the good of the Republic?”
Okay, starting now he’ll be a consummate professional.
“Yes,” the Nautolan jedi says, taking pity on Windu, which in itself is a pity.
Anakin leans back into his chair, steeples his fingers as if he’s considering it. As if he hasn’t already made up his mind. As if his entire body isn’t screaming yes at the top of its lungs. Every midi-chlorian he has is lit up at the idea that in as short of a time as five days, Obi-Wan Kenobi could be touching him. It feels inevitable. It feels like he’s waited his whole life for this. It feels right .
“Is there anything we can say to convince you?” The last jedi, the one whose hand he had kissed on the platform asks, half pleadingly, half despairingly.
Anakin feels a smile spread slowly across his face. He makes eye contact with Windu. “A please wouldn’t hurt,” he says.
Windu’s eye twitches with the strength of a thousand suns.