One Knight

Debra Fran Baker

dfbaker@panix.com


"Did I do good today, Master Kenobi?" Anakin nearly bounced from one leg to another.

Obi-Wan nodded as gravely as he could. "Yes, my Padawan. You were of great help. But now I believe it is time you went to our quarters and studied your lessons." He gave a little wink to the local constable who had joined them on this mission. The tall man with the intense blue eyes smiled back.

"You were a big help, Ani. I don't think we could have kept the ambassador safe without you. Now listen to your master."

"So, can I not stay up later? I could do my assignments on the ship."

"Ani...bed. Now." Obi-Wan looked at him in the best imitation he could of his own late master, as much as it pained him. Anakin gave the two men one last look and ran off. "I will check on your homework later!"

He turned to find the other man shaking his head. "I thought Jedi didn't lie."

Obi-wan shrugged. "I didn't lie, Jimm. I will check his assignment."

"You also said he helped. That's not the way I remember it."

"Yes, well. He didn't know that the ambassador's assistant was *supposed* to carry that knife, did he? That is my fault. I should have informed him. It was good that you saw him cause the knife to lift from the scabbard in that way."

Jimm shrugged. "I was lucky. I was in the right place at the right time."

"Yes." Obi-Wan frowned. He remembered that the man hadn't been that far from him when he'd noticed Anakin's "help", yet he himself had not seen anything untoward. Indeed, he could barely make out the knife itself.

"And, now that you got the kid safely away...at least I *hope* he's safely away. Something about him...you gotta keep an eye on that one."

"He has the best of intentions...but, yes?"

"Good intentions...Would you like to go some place, Master Obi-Wan? Some place...private?"

Obi-Wan looked at Jimm again. It had been a long time since Naboo, and this man, with those eyes and the powerful build had attracted him from the start. It wasn't simply how handsome he was, or his intelligence and ability as a constable. There was something else...a sadness that matched Obi-Wan's own.

"Yes. I believe I would enjoy that." He smiled.

**********************

"Some place private" proved to be Jimm's own quarters, elsewhere in the same building that temporarily housed the two visitors.

It was similar to the place Obi-Wan shared with his padawan - a bedroom, a kitchen and a sitting area, but it was unmistakably a home. The walls held abstract works of art, there were small, colorful objects on the tables and a warm throw on the back of the sofa. It was pleasant and comfortable, if as orderly and disciplined as the man who lived there.

At Jimm's gesture, he sat down and accepted a drink. "Is this alcoholic?"

"You must go off duty at some time, Knight Kenobi."

"I am called Obi-Wan. I'm teaching Anakin. There is no such thing as 'off-duty.'" He sipped the brew anyway.

"I hear that." Jimm settled next to him on the sofa. "Forgive me...Obi-Wan..." His voice caressed the name. "But I thought that Jedi masters were usually assigned apprentices at a few years older than you are...and that apprentices began much younger."

"These were special ci