Fandom: Star Wars
Prompt: fanfic50 #27 - Hurt
Word Count: 701
Summary: Anakin has some news for the Chancellor.
Author's Notes: Implied slash.
"Anakin, what is it? What's the matter?" Palpatine rose from the couch and frowned at the expression on his young lover's face. It was not unusual for Anakin to come calling at his home at this late hour. It also was not unusual for him to look anguished when he arrived; Palpatine always made sure he was happy by the time he left.
He had a good idea of the reason behind this visit. Of course, he couldn't let the boy know what he knew, or how he knew it. He would be sure to act surprised when Anakin told him of his marriage to Senator Amidala. It was all going according to plan.
They settled themselves on the couch side by side, but not touching. Palpatine attempted to put his arm around Anakin, but the boy flinched at his touch. "Anakin, please talk to me," he pleaded quietly.
Anakin sighed. "I have something to tell you... and you're not going to like it."
Palpatine smiled gently. "You know I won't judge you, sweetheart. I love you." The sweet sentiments rolled easily off his tongue. He knew Anakin thrived on them, along with praise -- things he was routinely deprived of at the Jedi Temple.
"Don't say that." He sighed again, apparently choking back a sob. "I don't deserve your love."
"Of course you do! Whatev--"
"Stop!" Anakin interrupted. "I don't! I've betrayed you."
Palpatine waited a moment before speaking, as if formulating a response -- though in fact he already knew exactly what to say. "Anakin, we've talked about this. I've never expected you to be faithful to me." At least not until you're my apprentice, he added silently. "Did you finally make progress with Senator Amidala? Or is there someone else you fancy now?"
Anakin shook his head. "I'm afraid I can't tell you. But I also can't... I can't..." He buried his face in his hands. "Force, I didn't know it would be this hard."
Palpatine shifted closer to him and rubbed his back soothingly. This time Anakin didn't pull away. "You can tell me anything. It won't leave this room. You know that."
"No, not... not this," he whispered, dangerously close to tears.
Palpatine was a patient man. He knew that the burden of this secret would eat at Anakin until he eventually confided in him. He rubbed, and waited, and rubbed some more. He could feel the tension in the boy's body. Perhaps tonight their session would be slow and tender. They could start with a nice hot bubble bath, followed by a sensual oil massage.
"I can't see you anymore," Anakin blurted out.
Palpatine absorbed this quietly. He was not surprised, though he did wish Anakin would have mentioned the marriage part first. It would be more difficult to persuade him without specifics to address. "Why can't you see me anymore?"
"I can't tell you. Force, I'm a horrible person!" Angry now, he got up and began pacing in long strides across the carpet.
"You are not--"
"YES I AM! Stop saying nice things about me because I don't deserve them! And you -- you don't deserve this. You've been nothing but wonderful to me and I hate leaving you but I can't help it. I have no choice. I'm sorry."
Palpatine stood, attempting to catch Anakin in his path and embrace him, but the Jedi turned and strode the other way. If he could only hold him, kiss him, tell him everything would be all right...
"I have to go." Anakin finally looked at the Chancellor, resolve in his steely blue eyes. "I'm so sorry. I never meant to hurt you. I hope you believe that."
And then he was gone.
Palpatine sank onto the couch, feeling oddly dazed. That wasn't supposed to happen. He barely let me touch him! he thought. Ah, no matter, surely the boy would be back. Perhaps not tonight, perhaps not next week, but someday. He was a patient man. He could wait.
He sat there for a long while, reflecting on what had just happened. Genuine tears formed in his eyes. He blinked them back in disgust. Suddenly he was impatient for this horrible night to be over.