Now that she has been re-accepted into the Jedi Order and named a Jedi Knight, Ahsoka Tano has some work to do. Luckily a helpful Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn is there to point her in the right direction. Senior Initiate Obi-Wan Kenobi has some training to make up for and a lesson in jar’kai waiting for him.
Obi-Wan could not remember the last time his arms were so tired and sore after just an hour of lightsaber practice. He happily slumped his way back to the Initiate Dormitory, shedding his robes and boots before taking a long shower in the refresher when he got to his room. After an eternity of muscle-relaxing warm water, he got out, changed into a more comfortable set of robes, and headed back out for dinner.
He was so wrapped up in the happy memories of his lesson with Master Ahsoka that Obi-Wan paid little attention to the older Padawans who were whispering about how he didn’t have a master yet.
“I can’t believe he’s still here!”
“I would have left out of shame by now.”
“My master says no one will take him. They say he’s too emotional. That he might go dark.”
“I heard he tried to ask Master Sinube. Can you believe it? How desperate do you have to be to ask that old fart?”
Holding his head high, Obi-Wan nodded pleasantly to his fellow Jedi. He had a wicked retort on his tongue but he stilled it, knowing deep in his heart that Master Ahsoka would not approve. He was going to make her proud, to show her that he was worthy of her teachings and maybe, if he was lucky, being her padawan.
So that meant Obi-Wan would just have to bite his tongue and ignore the cold-hearted nexus he found himself in line with.
“Hey, Obi-Wan!” a voice called out through the dining hall, belonging to a dark-skinned Kiffar with a golden stripe across his nose.
Who was pushing his way through the dinner crowd and making a beeline towards Obi-Wan. “Thanks for saving me a spot in line.”
Obi-Wan rolled his eyes. “I did no such thing, Quinlan. The end of the line is back there behind Padawan Rast.”
“You are such a goody-goody!” Quinlan groaned, wrapping an arm around his friend’s shoulders and then pulling him into a headlock where he could give him some proper encouragement with his knuckles. “You were totally saving a spot for me, right?”
“Gah! Ow! Quin! That hurts!” Obi-Wan protested, smacking at his friend’s arm for release before he would have to employ more aggressive measures. “Let me go, you odiferous gundark!”
“Odiferous?” Quinlan laughed, releasing Obi-Wan with a flourish and a firm place in line behind his friend as they shuffled forward to dinner. “I will have you know I took a bath yesterday.”
Obi-Wan gently touched the top of his head and winced. “I know. I can smell.”
“So what’s this I hear about there being a new knight in the Temple?” Quinlan asked, his eyes bright with curiosity and his smile lean and curious. “Master says she’s a Togruta that grew up on the Outer Rim? And her master passed into the Force a while ago.”
The surrounding padawans seemed to inch closer to Obi-Wan and Quinlan, their arch commentaries on Obi-Wan’s presence and Quinlan’s boisterous nature forgotten in the face of news and gossip. Highly observant for an initiate, Obi-Wan chewed on his lip as he carefully thought of what to say that would sate Quin’s voracious curiosity but wouldn’t give too much away about Master Ahsoka. He felt very protective of Ahsoka and didn’t want idle gossip to cause her the kind of trouble it had caused Obi-Wan.
“Knight Tano has recently returned from an extended mission in the field,” Obi-Wan finally concluded, thanking the serving droid as he took his tray and stepped away from the food line, Quinlan right on his heels. “She’s been having trouble finding her way with the renovations and I have offered to assist her around the Temple.”
“Tano?” Quinlan echoed, flopping down opposite Obi-Wan at one of the long tables the initiates and padawans sat at. “I don’t remember a knight by that name. What does she do?”
Obi-Wan frowned off to the side, trying to stay silent.
Quinlan narrowed his eyes, his grin growing wider. “You know what she was doing, don’t you! Tell me! C’mon, Obi-Waaaaan! I swear to Yoda I won’t tell a soul!”
Shaking his head, Obi-Wan folded his arms over his chest and continued his mulish silence.
“Obi-Wan!” the Kiffar pleaded, holding up his dessert, hoping it would loosen his friend’s tongue. “I’ll give you my chocolate sponge cake!”
“No!” Obi-Wan refused, shaking his head. “I can’t. I don’t have authorization to tell you.”
“Authorization?” Quinlan gaped, his excitement growing by the minute as he was starting to imagine Knight Tano taking on whole squadrons of pirates over the misty rings of an exotic Outer Rim planet. “Is she a Shadow? Master didn’t say anything about her being a Shadow!”
“Quinlan!” Obi-Wan hissed, leaning under the table to give his friend a good kick in the shins. “Shut your karking mouth before somebody hears you!”
“Language, Initiate,” a low voice rumbled into the two boys squabble and they both turned their faces skyward to see the tall, imposing presence of Master Qui-Gon Jinn standing over them. His face was impassive, neither a smile nor a frown on his lips and his eyes seemed to see beyond them, as if they were not there. “Brother Jedi do not squabble over petty gossip. You would do well to set a proper example for your friend, Padawan Vos.”
And with that bit of wisdom imparted, Master Jinn moved out of the dining hall and into the shadowed archway that led back into the Temple.
Obi-Wan let out a heavy sigh and turned his eyes back to his food as Quinlan let out a snort once he was absolutely certain the mountain of a master was out of earshot. He proceeded to sit up straighter and sniffed in a poor imitation of Master Jinn, “You would do well to be more of a stick in the mud like Luminara, Obi-Wan. She never has any fun and all the masters love her.”
Rolling his eyes, Obi-Wan tucked into his dinner. “Shut up, Quin. I don’t want to get chewed out by two masters tonight.”
Deciding that his empty stomach could hold out no longer, Quinlan followed Obi-Wan’s suggestion and the two boys began to eat in relative silence.
Quinlan didn’t notice Obi-Wan turning around to gaze out at the doorway Master Jinn departed through. I know Master Ahsoka thinks Master Jinn might be a good master for me but… I don’t know. I don’t think any Padawan could ever make him happy.
Obi-Wan bit into his chocolate sponge cake and sighed. Definitely not me.