Author's Note: A few warnings for you here. First, this is a side fic to "Finishing the Hat" and if you haven't read that you'll be very confused. Second, this is NOT CANON for obvious reasons.

"Go to the council with them, take the concerns of your people into consideration. Let them recognize who and what you are, Haruki. Be the proof they need to win this fight."

After she left, he felt cold. A sudden hollow chill as the place where she'd once resided, so close to his heart, was now empty. The only thing left to fill it a promise of the future he couldn't see, only a few words in Basic, and the idea of seven days by a calendar he was unfamiliar with.

The shadow of Namikaze Minato, no longer needed, dispersed back into the greater Force, energy cycling with all the rest through every star, flower, and sentient in the great cycle that was life itself.

And he was once again how he'd been for billions upon billions of years.

Only, not quite, he was different now. Agitated, hopeful, more alive and reactive than he'd ever been before. Before he had not realized he had the capacity or will to be anything other than what he was, there had been no reason for it, but now—

Now he found he could not go back even if he wished to.

Seven days, seven days of the Earth's rotation around a sun he could not see, it felt longer than any week on Tatooine with its twin overbearing suns ever could. He couldn't see them yet, no, only when they returned could he glean any sort of information from them. Look through at their lives and kingdom through an opaque window.

For now, there was only the unbearable wishing and the waiting.

A cry, louder and more forceful than it had any right to be, echoed, "The Force cannot be trusted!"

He felt his attention turn from the void Lee had left behind and looked back towards Coruscant and the Jedi Council. The desperate pleading of Obi-Wan Kenobi, who did not yet realize he was a heretic who could never again set foot inside the jedi temple, "The Force cannot be trusted. It, he, has an agenda that does not align with the Jedi Order's."

What a presumptuous thing to say, he had always found Obi-Wan Kenobi presumptuous. He had seen more of the universe than any other sentient, alive or dead, and yet he still persisted in the belief that the Force should serve them rather than vice versa. Even after the Force had so bluntly reminded him of his place in the world, he had the gall to state it to the jedi.

And, just as the Force had told the boy, they would not and would never believe him.

Kenobi knew it too, he screamed with that knowledge into the Force, and yet here he was trying anyway. With the hope that somehow, in some impossible way, he alone could change the course of fate. Strange, that he did not realize even the Force himself could not do that.

The Force himself had tried and failed, you think that would have been warning enough.

But no, it was not simply Kenobi, all those who became sith, in their heart, were chasing this strange dream. The idea of changing the world, fate, of bringing back the dead or preserving life, of perverting the Force to their own ends and selfish wishes. Forgetting, all the while, that he was the darkness as well as the light.

"Take the concerns of your people into consideration"

An echo, a memory, suddenly pulsed through him of that last time he'd seen Eru Lee. She had been looking at the clone but with enough force that she stared through him to Haruki's heart. Lee was different than him, she very much took the concerns of her people into consideration, interacted with them on a level he could hardly conceive.

Didn't that exhaust her, to play the game of mortality with so many, to regard them each as a different being and adjust speech and habit for each? Tobirama was not Obito who was not Minato who in turn was not the many others who had crossed Lee's mortal path.

Lee would have gone to that council meeting, no, she would have been there from the beginning letting her people know exactly who hand what she was. She would guide them towards whatever future it was they wanted for themselves, not the future she had always envisioned for them…

Why couldn't he do the same?

This wasn't like Anakin Skywalker, this was simple, so very simple it was almost laughable. They would not like it, might even reject it out of hand were he to appear before them, they could label Namikaze Minato as an enemy of the republic and jedi, some specter of the sith. However, he could do it, and what would she say then?

Would she be more inclined to stay, if he played by her strange rules?

"I have told you this already," Obi-Wan said, stepping forwards towards Yoda, whose wrinkled face showed no hint of understanding or thought, "I told you how he's taken the shape of a human man to—"

There was no need to finish he rest. Obi-Wan turned at the familiar presence of a shell, unwillingly almost, and found Minato Namikaze's face looking back at him with a fond if a catlike amused smile, "Obi-Wan Kenobi, you will get nowhere pleading without evidence."

Obi-Wan found he couldn't say anything, and thought, for a strange moment, that he might have preferred if the Force had not shown his face at all. After all, he had made it perfectly clear, that he was not on Obi-Wan Kenobi or the jedi's side in this. So, if he was here, then it could not possibly be for their benefit.

"The padawan is correct, to a point," the Force addressed the council, now staring open mouthed at this shell of a man, "And I have decided to end my era of indifference and non-interference. From now on, should you wish, you may consult with me directly to obtain whatever it is you want so desperately."

He paused then, appeared to think over the words, and stated the words that Obi-Wan somehow knew he would say, "Of course, the sith may as well. That's only fair, isn't it?"

Author's Note: Written for the 800th review of "Finishing the Hat" by fundamental blue who asked for a fic in which the jedi council believes Obi-Wan, perhaps through Lee or the Force's intervention. Well, for my own reasons I didn't write the aftermath of this but we get the nice ominous feeling that maybe it was simpler for Obi-Wan to simply leave.

Also, a confession, I double-booked the 800th review prompt so expect more side stories of Finishing the Hat shortly.

Thanks for reading, reviews are appreciated.

Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter, Naruto, or Star Wars