Title: Bits and Pieces Author: K'Tai qel Letta-Tanku Genre: AU Timeline: Before to Post, but mostly Before in and around the time of the Ultra-Stressed Jedi Students Notes: It has been over a decade since I have posted on the Boards, but my daughter found the USJS threads and asked for more. Therefore I'm playing catch up and joining the fun (reminiscent of USJS back in the day...). The OC's are mine with the exception of Rani Veko Kern who belongs to Rani Veko and Alex Arieh who is the creation of JediKnight-Obi-Wan. Week 1: Baby K’Tai looked down at the bundles in the crib. She glanced over at Obi-Wan. He looked pensive. Through their bond she could feel his unease about her assignment. “I’ll be in no more danger than you. Leia needs a protector as much as Luke does,” she said, trying to reason with him. Obi-Wan moved to put a hand on her shoulder. “I know. Just be careful. Please.” T’lor scoffed. “K’Tai isn’t the one who had a wing of the Halls of Healing named after her.” A pillow sailed across the room, aimed at her head. T’lor halted its progress. “Brat!” Child “T’lor, you will be late for class. Get moving!” “Yes, Master.” A streak of brown and pink raced out the door. Gi’den just shook his head and returned to his meditation. He was disturbed again only minutes later. “Padawan, why are you back?” he asked. He then took a good look at T’lor. In her haste she had put her robe on over her pajamas. Gi’den had to stifle a chuckle. Except for fabric, the pajamas were cut like her standard padawan garb. As she walked to her room, T’lor responded desolately, “Apparently pink bunnies are unbecoming of a Jedi.” Teenager Rani giggled softly. Shush! You’ll wake him up. I will not. Hand me the eye shadow. T’lor handed Rani the eye shadow. She watched as Rani carefully painted their victim’s eyes. Now for a little blush and some lipstick. There. All done. Rani stepped back, admiring her handiwork. “Where is the camera?” T’lor handed it to her. Rani quickly took the picture. The two girls left and returned to the game. “Here is the proof. OK Alex, truth or dare?” Meanwhile, Gi’den awoke and went to the ‘fresher. Looking in the mirror he groaned. The Disorderly Duo had struck again. Adult Gi’den caught T’lor before she hit the floor. Without thinking, he reached out across the echo of their bond to touch her unconscious mind. Confusion, pain, remorse, fear, and anger flooded his senses. T’lor had not escaped the witch’s touch entirely. He found the memory of the encounter. T’lor had tracked the witch through the fear of her last victim. T’lor had become increasingly angry and had instinctively drawn on her anger, using it to augment her abilities in the Force. He sighed. Leave it to his padawan to inadvertently discover the basis of Vaapad in the heat of battle. Elderly K’Tai held the data cube in her hand. Obi-Wan had passed into the Force decades earlier, and yet she kept it. It was most certainly a sign of an attachment unbecoming of a Jedi. Luckily, she was Tal’shari. An image of Obi-Wan appeared when she pressed the button. Even worn and battle-weary, he was handsome. She could almost feel his presence. “Hello love,” said Obi-Wan’s voice. K’Tai blinked back tears that sprung to her eyes. She paused the recording. She remembered the last thing he had said to her after he had been cut down: I’ll be waiting for you.