Riding the Wheel of...What the Hell???
The following short story in inspired by the Wheel of If series by MrsHamill, at The Hidden Realm
Obi-Wan Kenobi slumped to his knees, nearly deafened by the bang of displaced air. Trying to get his bearings, he stood and looked around the Temple garden, confused by the rows of strange-looking plants all around him. There were very few trees in this garden, one of which had a figure lying at the base of its trunk. A large, very familiar figure.
"Master?" Obi-Wan queried, shaking Qui-Gon Jinn's shoulder.
"Uhhnnn," the man groaned, opening his eyes just long enough for them to roll into the back of his head.
"Master!" Obi-Wan repeated, alarmed now. Had Qui-Gon been poisoned?
"Stoned he is," said a voice behind him. "Useless he will be to you."
Obi-Wan turned around, staring in shock at Master Yoda. "Master Yoda?" he gasped, staggering back against the tree.
"Back again you are," Yoda stated, seemingly oblivious to the fact that he was wearing a scarlet corset with matching lipstick.
"Apparently," Obi-Wan said, carefully stepping back, keeping the tree between him and Yoda. "The question is why?"
"Hmmm. Strong disturbance I sense. In the Force this time."
"This time?" Obi-Wan repeated, bewildered.
"Help him you must. Yes."
"Help yourself you must," Yoda clarified.
"Where am I. I mean, where is he?" Obi-Wan corrected, shaking his head at Yoda's gold laminated claws.
"Take you there I can. Yes. Hmmm. Come," Yoda said, hobbling off.
"No! I mean, I think you should just tell me where to find him," Obi-Wan suggested, not about to let himself be lured inside that particular Jedi Temple.
"Hmmppphhhh. Stubborn you are," a disappointed Yoda declared before giving Obi-Wan directions.
Obi-Wan stood in front of a bank of elevators, annoyed by the out-of-order sign taped onto every single door. Climbing forty-two flights of stairs was not what he had in mind.
He had just reached the thirty-ninth floor when a commotion coming from somewhere above brought him to a sudden stop.
Startled by the horrified wail, Obi-Wan looked up just in time to see a ball of fur and claws launching itself at him. Instinctively covering his face, he lost his balance and tumbled down the stairs, catching a glimpse of a small striped something darting past him.
He had just managed to struggle to his feet when someone else crashed into him, a human this time, knocking him flat on his ass again.
"I'm... sorry," the man blubbered as he helped Obi-Wan to his feet.
Feeling a growing wet spot on his robe, Obi-Wan finally shoved the man back, made difficult by the fact that he was now clinging to him for dear life.
"What the...Obi-Wan Kenobi?" he asked as he finally got a look at the man, astonished by the cascade of tears running down his double's face.
"Yes," the other Obi-Wan sniffled. "Who are you? Wow! You look just like me. Do I have another twin brother?" he asked, smiling brightly.
"No. Not exactly. Look, just call me Ben. What was that?" Ben asked, wincing in pain as he glanced over his shoulder. He watched, nearly transfixed, as Obi-Wan's face instantly crumbled.
"You've got to help me!" Obi-Wan sobbed, flinging his arms around Ben again. "She's got Fluffi-Wan!"
"Wait a minute... Get off me!" Ben ordered, shoving Obi-Wan back again. "Who's she? And who's this Fluffi-Wan?" he asked, taken aback by that last name. Fluffi-Wan??
"Fluffi-Wan's my pet hamster," Obi-Wan replied, still sniffling. "My neighbor's cat has him. I think she's...going to...kill him..."
Astonished, Ben watched as Obi-Wan burst into tears again. Is this why the Force had sent him here again? To rescue a hamster?
"No one's going to kill your hamster," Ben told him firmly, attempting to take this situation seriously. "Do you know where it...she was going?"
"The boiler room, I think. She's been hanging out down there ever since Maul left on a vacation three days ago. I don't understand what happened," Obi-Wan said as he followed Ben down to the boiler room. "They usually get along so well."
Looking warily around, Ben pulled another lightsaber out of his bag and ignited it, trying to ignore Obi-Wan, who was practically squealing in his ear.
"You can't kill her! She's a life-form!"
"Quiet! And get off me!" Ben ordered, shrugging Obi-Wan off of his back as he whirled around, hearing the sound of claws being scraped along a metal pipe. "Stay here."
Stepping out into the middle of the boiler room, Ben stared up at the ceiling in disbelief. There was Fluffi-Wan, tied up and gagged, hanging from a steel beam by a pink feather boa. A small cat was lying across the beam, slowly sharpening her claws on the boa, which was now starting to fray. A deep hole was directly underneath them: certain death for the small hamster if he fell.
Fluffi-Wan looked down at Ben with glazed eyes, silently pleading for help.
"FLUFFFYYYY!" Obi-Wan screamed, trying to rush forward.
"Get back!" Ben ordered, watching as the small cat looked down at them with a demented grin before continuing to sharpen her claws. He turned off his lightsaber and glanced across the room again, judging the distance. The boa was going to give any second now. He put his bag of lightsabers on the floor and waited.
The moment it snapped, Ben moved, running towards the hole and somersaulting over it, catching Fluffi-Wan in mid-air. Hearing an angry hissing noise as he landed, Ben looked back up at the steel beam, but the cat had already disappeared.
"Wow! That was amazing!" Obi-Wan gushed as he rushed over to them.
Ignoring him for the moment, Ben quickly removed the gag from the hamster, nearly dropping the small animal when it suddenly vomited onto his robe and passed out.
"Ewwwww!" Obi-Wan exclaimed in disgust. "I'm really sorry about that. Would you like to come up to my room? I could clean that for you," he offered.
"I think I'll do that," Ben said, looking down at the dark stain as he handed the limp hamster to Obi-Wan.
"Are you all right, Fluffy Wuffy?" Obi-Wan cooed as he led the way to the elevators.
"They're out of order," Ben said, pointing to the signs.
"Oh, no. They're working fine. Maul put those signs up before he left. He loves a good joke."
Shaking his head, Ben followed Obi-Wan into one of the elevator.
"What are you doing here?!?" Ben demanded, reaching for a lightsaber as Senator Palpatine casually strolled into Obi-Wan's apartment.
"I merely thought that Obi-Wan might appreciate a visit from his father," Palpatine said with a bright smile.
"You're...his father?" Ben asked in disbelief. What the hell had he gotten himself into this time?
"What's going on here?" asked a dark-haired woman dressed in black leather, walking in behind Palpatine. "Obi-Wan called me up in a panic about his stupid hamster."
"Da! Sis!" Obi-Wan cried happily as he returned from the bathroom. "Ben, this is my father, Senator Palpatine, and my sister, Mary Sue. This is Ben. He saved Fluffi-Wan's life!"
"Did he?" the Senator asked, looking Ben up and down with a leer.
"Now wait a minute," the woman exclaimed, studying Obi-Wan's face. "Are you taking Perkium again?"
Wearing a blank expression, Obi-Wan looked over at Palpatine.
"Dad!" Mary Sue warned, following her brother's gaze.
"Yes, it was my doing," Palpatine admitted. "I'm expecting a large donation to my campaign, and I can't afford to have any offspring stealing more cars until after I've acquired it."
"You drugged him?" Ben asked, feeling a little ill.
"Just for a day or two," Palpatine said, ogling Ben again. "It will wear off, I assure you."
"And how long is that going to take?" Mary Sue snapped, barely mollified.
"Not long, I'm sure. Don't worry," he said with an oily smile. "Obi-Wan will be back to normal in no time.
"He'd better!" Mary Sue grouched before looking Ben over with a grin.
Ignoring the looks he was getting, Ben turned to Obi-Wan. "You're a thief?"
"Well, I was," Obi-Wan admitted, squirming. "But that was a long time ago."
"That was last month," Palpatine reminded him.
"I think it's time we left," Mary Sue said as she and her father both admired Ben's rear.
Continuing to ignore them, Ben suddenly whirled around, feeling someone pinching his ass. Mary Sue and Palpatine looked back at him, innocent expressions on both of their faces as they left Obi-Wan's apartment.
"They're the best!" Obi-Wan gushed as Ben shook his head in disgust.
"Oh, by the way, your robe's finally clean. I hung it up to dry.
"You said earlier that this cat usually got along with your hamster," Obi-Wan began, not believing that for a moment. "Do you have any idea what caused this change in behavior?"
"Well, I'm not sure. She started acting strange earlier today, right after she played with this," Obi-Wan told him, picking up a shredded sofa cushion from the floor.
Ben took it from him and examined it. Catching a glimpse of something inside, he reached in and pulled out a ripped and chewed on plastic bag. It contained what looked like dried mushrooms.
"Wow, you found it!" Obi-Wan exclaimed, then went on to explain. "That belongs to my master. He lost it over a year ago."
"Actually, I think that cat found it first," Ben told him. "Do you know where it...she might be now?"
"She's probably back in Maul's apartment. He lives right next door. I have a key," a blushing Obi-Wan told Ben, oblivious to his shudder.
Following Obi-Wan next door, Ben stopped in the middle of the room, amazed by the filthy conditions. There were pizza boxes everywhere. One of them had tiny life-forms crawling around the outside that bore a strong resemblance to chunks of pineapple. They were building what looked like a small round spaceship out of pieces of empty beer cans and the insides of a television remote control.
"There she is," Obi-Wan said quietly, pointing to a small striped cat sleeping peacefully on a dirty sweater.
"Poor widdle kitty," Obi-Wan gushed. "I hope she's back to normal before Maul gets back." He looked down at the red and green striped sweater. "Yuck! She must have found that in the boiler room."
Ben crept over to her, wrapping her up in the sweater as she woke. Yawning, the cat looked up at him in a drugged haze before falling back asleep. "She seems to be sleeping it off now," Ben said after examining her. "Perhaps she'll be safer in your room," he added, glancing over at the small spacecraft. It actually looked as if it was close to being operational.
"I can't thank you enough!" Obi-Wan exclaimed after checking on the still sleeping pets. He threw his arms around Ben, holding him tightly.
"Let go," Ben ordered, uncomfortable by the way Obi-Wan was clinging to him, and by the look in the other hamster's eyes.
Obi-Wan ignored his words, hugging him even tighter, oblivious to the growing jealousy of the other hamster.
Speaking of growing, Ben thought as Obi-Wan hips started to grind against his. Oddly enough, Obi-Wan didn't even seem aware of what he was doing. "Enough!" Ben yelled, pushing Obi-Wan away the same moment the hamster, Cuddles, launched his attack. It leaped off the table it was on and landed on Ben's shoulder.
Taking a step back, Ben bumped into the sofa, falling over backwards as he felt tiny teeth sinking into his neck. "Get off!!" he yelled.
"Cuddles!!! NOOoooo!" Obi-Wan shrieked, running over to pull the hamster off Ben.
"Knew this would happen I did," Yoda stated from the now-open door.
"How did you get in here?" Obi-Wan asked, alarmed by the huge feathered headdress Yoda was wearing. "And what are you wearing??"
"Gave me key, Qui-Gon did. Concerned for you, he was," Yoda told them, looking down at his sequined minidress. "Hmmm. Anniversary it is, at the Gray Side. Going there eight years I have been"
Feeling violently ill, Ben stood and rushed to the bathroom.
"Hmmmpphh. Sith, it is!" Yoda declared, pointing his cane at Cuddles.
Obi-Wan looked up at him, horrified. He scrambled to his feet, shielding the hamster as if Yoda had just attempted to kill it. "No. He's not! He just needs more Perkium!"
"Hmmm. Not fix everything, do drugs. Know that, I do," Yoda sighed, pulling at what little hair he had left.
"What's the deal, dude?" Mace Windu said from the doorway. "The green guy said there was something goin' down over here." He walked inside the room, followed by an unsteady Qui-Gon.
"Hi, Master. Look what we found," Obi-Wan said cheerfully, holding up the plastic bag as Ben returned from the bathroom.
"Thanks, man," Mace said, taking the bag and sniffing it. "Whew!"
"Obi-Wan?" Qui-Gon asked, squinting from one to the other with bleary eyes. He took a step forward and tripped, knocking Ben to the floor and landing on top of him.
"Get him off me!!!" Ben screamed, sounding remarkably like his double in that instance as he struggled under the larger man's weight.
"C'mon man. Time for that later," Windu said, pulling Qui-Gon off. "You need to chill, man. Try some," he added, pulling a bong out of a hidden pocket and offering it to Ben.
"No, thank you!"
"Decide you must, whether to inhale," Yoda advised, studying his painted claws.
"Absolutely not!" Ben exclaimed, incensed. "I've got to get out of here!" he muttered, trying to remember the way back to the Temple.
"Take you to the garden I will," Yoda suggested.
"No! Do you know the way to the garden?" Ben asked Obi-Wan.
"Sure, I've been there a few times. Qui-Gon usually goes there once a week," Obi-Wan said as he put Cuddles in the Habitrail next to the still unconscious Fluffi-Wan.
"Good! Come on," Ben said, dragging Obi-Wan out the door with him.
"Hmmpphhh. Need that I do," Yoda declared, grabbing the bong from Mace's hand.
"How is Fluffi-Wan, anyway?" Ben asked as they reached the garden. He immediately regretted the question when Obi-Wan's eyes filled up with tears.
"He might have to be sent to a Happy Farm for therapy. It could take weeks for him to recover!" Obi-Wan exclaimed, his lower lip quivering.
Shaking his head in despair, and hoping to never find himself here again, Ben pulled out his lightsaber and pressed the button.
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