Life Lessons at the Sith Academy, Part XVIII
a.k.a. "Maul vs. His Mortality"
[Read Siubhan's author bio]
Inspired by my 30th birthday. Thanks to My Evil Twin Laura, and Joan the English Chick for suggestions.
Maul stumbled out of bed at the rather unSithly hour of 9 in the morning when the six-pack of Pete's he'd consumed three hours ago decided it wanted back out. After nearly nodding off again in front of the toilet, Maul headed to the sink to get some water when he stopped dead in his tracks and stared in the mirror.
There, on his right temple, Maul had a silver-gray horn.
My Apprentice hopped up on the sink and stared intently at the offending horn. Someone's getting oooooooold! she taunted.
"Shut up, you stupid cat."
Next thing you know, you'll need Depends.
Your horns will start falling out permanently. Then you'll start slowing down. She leapt from the sink into the tub, her new favorite place.
Maul used the Force to turn the shower on full-blast. A very indignant and extremely wet My Apprentice zipped out of the tub at lightspeed. "I'll show you slowing down," Maul grinned.
My Apprentice was too busy frantically licking herself dry to care.
Deep in a funk, Maul sat chain-smoking on his balcony. Just as he finished his first pack and started in on his second, Maul looked up to see Obi-Wan step out onto his own balcony. "You look depressed," Obi-Wan commented.
Maul grunted and pointed at his gray horn.
"Oh." Obi-Wan vaulted over to Maul's balcony, and said, "My condolences."
Maul sighed, lit up a second cig, and handed it to Obi-Wan.
Obi-Wan accepted the proffered cig, leaned against the railing, and took a thoughtful drag while looking at Maul through appraising eyes.
"What?" Maul asked.
"Spit it out."
"It's just, you look kind of...distinguished with that gray horn."
Maul snorted and tossed a lit butt at the padawan.
Obi-Wan swatted it away and asked, "Is this part of the normal aging process for...oh, right. You don't know anything about your species." Obi-Wan squinched his eyes in thought, then asked, "Say, how old are you anyway?"
"No, really, how old are you?" Obi-Wan asked. "You're about my age, right? 25?"
"I have no fucking clue how old I am. Sid...Palpatine adopted me 21 years ago. No one knows how long I was with the Tauntauns before that. Best guess is two years, but no one really knows."
"What's on your birth certificate?"
"Two years from the date I was found on Hoth."
"I saw that NNN special," Obi-Wan grinned. "You were a cute little thing back then."
"I was hairy and feral," Maul snarled. "Not cute."
"You have your kinks, I have mine," Obi-Wan replied as he finished off his cigarette and tossed the lit butt over the balcony railing. It sailed down into the back seat of Mace Windu's convertible hovercar and started smoldering in the bag of munchies he'd acquired for the party at Qui-Gon's. "So, you were probably two, but you could have been...oh...five or six?"
"Probably not. I was pretty small."
"You still are. Maybe your species takes a long time to mature."
"Just like yours," Maul muttered under his breath.
"Who knows? You could have been 30 already for all we know. Maybe your growth was stunted by Tauntaun milk and your mental development was retarded by not being around sentient beings."
"What's your excuse?" Maul seethed.
Obi-Wan chuckled with mock indulgence and said, "Well, I'd better stop taunting the old man. It's not very Jedi of me." Before Maul's kick connected, he'd leapt gracefully back onto his own balcony. "Hmmm, maybe I'd better find a younger boyfriend," he mused.
"Why don't you go pry Jon-Tra off of Mace," Maul taunted.
Obi-Wan shuddered. "Oh great, put that mental picture in my head."
"The elderly fight dirty," Maul grinned.
Damn you, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and the Jedi you rode in on!
Ever since that conversation on the balcony, Maul had been consumed with doubts about his aging process. What if his species had a short life span? What if he really was getting old? He surfed over to www.drpoop.com and pulled up the medical information on aging.
Shit, he hadn't thought of that one. Wait a minute, Sidious definitely had the first three symptoms, but he sure as hell wasn't impotent. Far from it. He seemed to get randier by the year. And kinkier. Oh shit, maybe Sith lords just got progressively kinkier as they got older. "I'm already fucking a Jedi," Maul grumbled under his breath. "How much kinkier can a Sith get? What's next? Muppets?" Maybe impotence would be the lesser of two evils.
Suppressing a shudder, Maul grabbed a wallet out of the pile he'd stolen that week and headed for the drug store.
"In the bathroom."
Sidious wrinkled his nose. "What's that odd smell?"
"I'm mixing up some horn polish."
His curiosity piqued, Sidious glided into the bathroom and picked up the box that was sitting on the edge of the sink. "'Yoda's Horn Club for Men (and other assorted horned genders).' Maul, whatever is this for?"
Maul sighed and pointed to the gray horn at his temple.
Sidious began to chuckle. His chuckle deepened into a cackle. His cackle grew into a guffaw. His guffaw took a massive hit of amyl nitrate and turned into a ROTFL.
My Apprentice hopped out of the tub, took one look at Sidious, and hopped back in. I don't wanna know.
"Oh dear boy," Sidious finally gasped. "That's just precious. I really shouldn't let you dye that. I suspect that forcing you to keep it will really help you hone that rage and hatred of yours."
Maul growled low in his throat, then grinned as inspiration struck him. "Don't you have a speech before the Coruscant Association of Retired Persons tomorrow?"
"CARP? Why, yes I do. I've got the loveliest speech prepared. Ahem." He struck a dignified pose. "Some day, when the youthful bloom has faded from my cheeks, I too shall join this august organization..."
Maul suppressed a snort and thought, That bloom ain't fading until Maybelline goes out of business.
"Did you say something, Maul?"
"Er, no. Anyhow, you still need me to show up for PR, right?"
"Of course. Old folks dig that 'Kindly Senator and his Odd Ward' shit."
"Well, if I show up with a gray horn, they're going to do the math."
"Whatever are you talking about?"
"Think about it. If you're old enough to have a ward with a gray horn, then you're old enough to join CARP."
Sidious paled visibly under his makeup. "Oh dear. Maul, throw away that over the counter horn dye. I'm making you an immediate appointment to see Raoul. You're getting that dyed professionally."
Raoul clucked his tongue as Maul climbed into his chair. "Look atchoo. Jou didn' do a bery good job of streaking jour horn."
"What are you talking about?" Maul snarled through gritted teeth.
"Jou bleached jour horn. See? The root's peeping out."
Maul leaned forward and stared intently at the horn in the mirror. Sure enough, there was a sliver of his normal horn color right at the base. He turned back to Sidious with an angry glare.
"What?" Sidious said with his best air of wounded offense.
"Last night. Your place."
"Oh, you mean when we bleached my bikini line?"
Raoul clucked his tongue again. "Miss Palpatine, I tol'jou not to do that jourself."
"Well, I had a drag ball to attend later that night and you were booked solid!" he protested. "So I had my app...er, ward here do it for me."
"And when you were practicing your vogueing, your bra cones knocked into the bottle and splashed bleach on me," Maul added.
"Jou probably didn' clean it off fast enough an that's why it's all gray. Don' worry. I can dye it to match the others," Raoul said.
Sidious chuckled amicably and said, "I'm terribly sorry about all this, Raoul. Next time, I'll make an appointment in advance and..."
Raoul flung out his arm and said, "Talk to the hand, 'cause jour stylist don't wanna hear it."
"So, how's my elderly neighbor?" Obi-Wan beamed evilly as he strode out onto his balcony. "Any signs of incontinence yet? Do you need some Depends?"
Maul snorted and said, "False alarm. It was a bleach accident."
"Oh." Obi-Wan vaulted over to Maul's balcony and said, "So, you dyed it back."
"Ah fuck. I had all sorts of shit to taunt you with."
"Sucks to be you," Maul grinned, then squinted at Obi-Wan as something caught his eye.
"What? Something in my hair?"
"Yeah, a gray."
"I don't believe you."
With a chuckle, Maul said, "For once, I'm telling the truth. Oh, wait, there's a second one."
"You're shitting me."
Maul reached out and plucked one from Obi-Wan's head.
"Here's your proof," he said, handing it to the indignant padawan.
"Oh fuck," Obi-Wan sighed as he stared down the incontrovertible evidence. "And you say there's another one?"
"Lean your head forward. Yep, I see at least three more."
"So, need any Geritol? A cane? Perhaps some Viagra?" Maul taunted.
"Oh, I'm just getting started..."
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