Beyond Echoes of Always - L/M - Complete - Second Fan Art added 4/10

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by ginchy, Jan 30, 2012.

Moderators: Briannakin, mavjade
  1. Darth_Kiryan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2009
    star 4
    huh! That was different.
    Actually, that was better than different. Awesome, actually.
  2. Mondra Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 12, 2010
    star 1
    Bugger off, Skywalker, but don't go yet! Make up your mind, Mara... Really, why she'd want to get rid of a nice, warm Farmboy is a mystery to me. :D

    This is getting more and more interesting! I wonder how will Luke and Mara interact now and will he meet "his" daughter. And why would people pretend to be Luke? Just to get into Mara's "good graces"?
  3. ginchy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    Thanks everyone! [:D] Next week you?ll get two updates. Chapter 4 and Interlude 1. I think I?ll post Interlude 1 on Wednesday. I hope you?ll continue to enjoy!


    JediMara77: I know what you mean. The middle to the mid-later parts of the fic are my favorite, too. Well, that and the epilogue that you haven?t gotten to read yet. LOL! And I?m glad you like Mara finding him. It just felt right. Oh, and the punching Lukei, thing. His poor nose. LOL!! It was one of the first images of this fic that came to me. GREAT MINDS!! Or, as in our case, ONE MIND. And I?m so glad you like the way Mara greeted Luke. I just can?t imagine her not being angry/shocked/upset, at least at first. Thanks so much for all your help and encouragement, lady!!

    taramidala: You?ll have to wait to see if the realities can merge. ;) I?m glad you like the twist. I hate writing dead Luke. :( It goes against ginchy?s nature. But it made sense for the story. Thank you!

    CurtisZidaneZiraa: Oooh, that is an interesting twist with that ?Wheel? fic, that Palpatine was manipulating it all, of course. I way-backed it and scanned through some of it. It?s a huge fic!! I read that part about the author?s dream on fanlore. Very interesting. LOL As I was saying to Nanci, one of my first inspirations for this fic was alt-Mara punching Luke in the nose and him telling her that he missed her. As for how her Luke died, you?ll find out in the next chapter? I think. It?s been so long since I wrote it, but it?s within the next two chapters at least. But you?re so right. She?s been harassed by people claiming to be Luke (cashing in on their couple of minutes of ?fame?)?. And you?re so right that Luke is still optimistic. That?s why we love him. Thanks for reading!!

    Jedi_Lover: Lady, I like the way your mind works. [face_mischief] I will have your StN to you tonight, promise!! Thanks!

    Briannakin: You?re right about the kids. She is adamant that he not see them and I agree with her. Even though her daughter is an adult and Ben a teen, that would still be very hard on them. Thank you so much, girl!!

    Jade_eyes: Yes, Mara has been without her Luke for much longer than Luke?s been without his Mara. :( Trust me, it breaks ginchy?s heart to write that. I toyed with the idea of writing Luke finding a younger Mara or an older one, but I like the idea of them being in the same time/place/circumstance. I don?t think it?s too much of a spoiler to say that there will be some definite sizzling between these two, so you?ll have to stay tuned for that. But as for coming to terms and making peace in their lives?what?s so wrong with that? After reading Sacrifice I was devastated on two levels?that Mara was gone and that Luke seemed so broken. And I wanted to help Luke not be broken anymore, even if we couldn?t have our Mara back. I wanted to show that death cannot truly separate them and does not invalidate their love. I?m not sure you will enjoy the story as much as I had hoped you would, but I hope you will get some happiness out of it. Thank you for reading!

    Hazel: Thank you so much! That?s a nice compliment but I?m sorry to make you cry!! I wrote some mush this week?I hope that helped!!

    Klimt_Of_Tornesdal: My cousin was the biggest Quantum Leap fan ever! I never watched it at the time but wish I had. Thank you for peeking in and I hope you?ll enjoy the rest of the story!

    Jade_Pilot: Hey, lady!!! Squeeeeeeeee away!! I love it! LOL You are so much a part of this story. I still remember chatting it out with you every week for about a year! Laughter through tears is beautiful. Thank you, lady!! [:D]

    RedGold: Yes, lady! This is the one I told you and Jade_Lotus about! LOL!! It?s angsty but full of love. ;) Thank you, girl!!

    Phoenix5: Thank you!! I was trying for different and I?m glad that comes across. />
  4. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    I was just thinking...her Luke died 12 years earlier, so this Luke would look older. I wonder if the other fakers bothered to try age progression? Maybe this is why she didn't throw him out on his butt right away...the attention to detail. Maybe she should have strip searched him to see how detailed he was...but I guess seeing his soul through the Force is good also.;)
  5. kataja Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2007
    star 4
    Auch! This is so angsty and awesome!!!! :D

    The idea of Mara on a beach collecting shells was so silly, yet it made his heart ache to think that it would never happen.
    Awww.... and yes, silly indeed!

    Holding a hand to his bleeding nose, a huge grin broke out across his face in spite of himself. ?Gods, Mara,? he said, looking up at her. ?I?ve missed you.?
    LOL he knows her so well!!!

    That was another thing he had not thought about, the fact that he would not have a Force bond with this Mara. That bond belonged to his Mara alone, but even as he sat there watching her react to what she was viewing from him, he could feel echoes of something, as if he could feel the phantom lines of the bond that had once existed with his wife. He wondered if she could feel it, too.
    OMG, this is so good! You really take in all complications!!! Bravo!

    ?Go back,? she said.

    Luke?s finger hovered over the screen, and he reached out to press it.

    ?Wait!? Mara choked out, grabbing his ringed hand before his finger could make contact with the screen. She searched his face. ?I--?

    He met her gaze and their eyes locked, a moment lengthening between them until she squeezed his hand, panic in her eyes. He shook his head. ?I was just going to turn it off. I can?t leave, Mara? the device needs twenty-four hours to recharge
    .?
    Exactly! She'd scorn him and reject him - and still she'd hope! Absolutely love this story and can't wait to see where you'll take it!!!
  6. ginchy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    Jedi_Lover: LOL!!! He looks like the Too Hot to be a Widower pic, girl, and Mara was like?. ?Well? you can stay?. If you?re a bad boy?. [face_mischief]? [face_laugh] [face_laugh] And you?re right?there is a perfect way for her to know for sure? but she won?t strip search him. Yet. ;)

    kataja: I never thought I?d be writing something with so much angst, girl! But that?s what Sacrifice brought out in me. LOL I?m glad you liked the part without the Force Bond. Something should be sacred to their respective spouses, but it also just makes it that much more jarring on them. I tried to think of little things like that, so I?m glad it shows! Thank you, gal!!!


    Last time Luke revealed that he?ll be stuck in Mara?s dimension for 24 standard hours. Let?s see if Mara decks him again? I hope you?ll enjoy and stay tuned for Interlude 1, ?Birth?, on Wednesday!



    CHAPTER 4

    “Twenty-four hours!” Mara let go of his arm and jumped up from the couch.

    “Yes.” Luke spoke calmly, but his stomach rolled as he worried about her reaction. She had panicked when he was going to leave; he felt it through the Force and saw it in her eyes. Mara didn’t like to be caught being vulnerable. And his presence did that to her, he was sure of that. As always with Mara, it was one step forward and two steps back. Some things never changed, and that thought gave him a small smile.

    “And just what did you expect to do here for twenty-four hours?” Her voice was frosty cold again. She folded her arms in front of her chest and glared at him.

    “I guess…I guess I hadn’t really thought that far ahead.”

    Mara rolled her eyes as she regarded him from her towering position. “I guess some things never change.”


    Luke’s face stretched into another small smile as she echoed his thoughts. Then silence fell between them then. He began to feel awkward, unsure of what to do or say. He ached to hold Mara in his arms, but it was clear to him now that she was not his wife nor he her husband and that wasn’t going to change any time soon. “I’ll go,” he said, as Mara continued to perpetrate their silence. “Find a diner or walk around or something until the time is up.”

    He walked to the door. Before he left he turned to look at her again. He stared at her as if memorizing her features, imprinting this woman who was so full of life over the memories of Mara on an autopsy table or on her funeral pyre. She was standing in profile but turned toward him when he spoke again. “I’m sorry about your husband,” he said.

    “Luke being dead makes it somewhat easier on you,” Mara retorted. “Imagine if you had showed up here and found him, instead of me. Would you have waited the time limit and tried again?”

    Luke took a breath and thought about what she was asking. “I don’t know,” he answered honestly. “I really don’t.”


    She didn’t say anything further and he turned to palm the door open.

    “Where do you think you’re going?”

    Mara’s voice behind him was still so unexpected and his shoulders hunched. “I’m leaving. I thought that’s what you wanted.”

    “I didn’t ask for anything in this situation, Skywalker.” She sighed and some of her frustration bled out through the Force. “You can’t just leave, go walking around out there or here in the Temple. Luke Skywalker is dead.”

    “I can use the Force to disguise myself, Mara,” Luke reminded dryly. “It’ll be fine. I’ll hang around until the limit is up and then go back home.”

    “Then will you use the device again? Find another Mara? What if she’s married still?”

    Luke let out a puff of excess air and leaned his head against the door. “I just don’t know, Mara. I didn’t…I didn’t really think this through.” He wasn’t about to mention the vision he’d had, the one that had led him to use the device in the first place. He could only imagine Mara’s reaction to that.

    She appraised him with a long look, and then her inner practicality seemed to take over. “Just come back in here, Skywalker. Sit down. We’ll eat this cold takeout of mine and you can tell me just what the hell your thought process was to get you here.”

    Luke didn’t meet her eyes, barely hoping to believe that she would let him spend his time there with her. “What about your kids?” he asked. “I wouldn’t want to upset them.”

    “They’re gone for the week. They went with Han and Leia’s bunch to Naboo.” Mara turned abruptly and headed into the sitting area to grab the forgotten bag of takeout.

    He trailed after her, following her into the kitchen. She grabbed a couple of plates from the cabinet and methodically set out the food. He wondered if the mundane tasks were helping to ease her mind.

    “Do they…the kids, I mean…live here with you?” He itched to help her, to do something other than stand in the doorway like a sleemo.

    “Ben does, of course.” Mara sat at her table and started spooning food out of the containers onto two plates. “He’s only sixteen. Betrys has her own room in the same wing as the other Knights that are based on Coruscant.”

    Luke stepped further into the room and looked at a flimsi holograph of Betrys and Ben that was stuck to the cooler. “She’s beautiful,” he said, looking at Mara’s daughter. She was unmistakably his—a Skywalker—but her eyes were the same dark green as Mara’s and they set off her blonde hair. The sight of her sent a spasm of longing through Luke, to think that he could have been the father of a daughter, that he could have had more children with Mara.

    “She is,” Mara agreed. “She looks even more like yo—like him than Ben. Acts somewhat more like him, too.”


    She seemed more willing to talk about her children and Luke listened eagerly. She glanced up at the holo he was studying. “It’s amazing how similar our Bens are,” she said. “From what I saw in your memory, he’s quite like my own son.”

    “He’s very like Mara,” Luke said. “A good kid. Better than I deserve.”

    “I feel that way about mine sometimes,” Mara admitted.


    She gave a pointed look to the seat across from her. He sat down and looked at the food on his plate for the first time. “My—”

    “Favorite,” she cut in. “Yes, I know. I was having a sentimental moment earlier tonight.”

    “Maybe it was the Force at work,” he murmured, delighted and enchanted when Mara released a small huff of surprised laughter. She immediately coughed to cover it.

    They focused on their plates then, eating for a few awkward moments. Luke was not very hungry and pushed his meal around on his plate, and noticed that Mara was doing the same. He searched for safe topics to talk about, and found himself coming back to the children. “If I can ask, how old is your daughter?”

    Mara put her fork down next to her plate. “She’ll be thirty-one next week. She was born in 12 ABY…on my wedding night.”

    “She was born on your wedding night?” Luke exclaimed, putting his own fork aside. “That’s more than I can even imagine. Did you go into labor at the altar?”

    “No, it was afterward. It was a small ceremony and then…well, she has father’s timing,” Mara said with a chuckle.

    “In 12 ABY,” Luke said with wonder. He thought about his own dimension and how he had been involved with Callista at that time. He had only seen Mara once that entire year, when she had come to the Academy and spoken with Callista. His heart clenched to think of what he could have had in that year. Though he had loved Callista, she hadn’t been the love that he yearned for.

    “What was your wedding like?” Mara asked. Luke realized that she must be relaxing if she was willing to find out more about him and his life.

    “Ah, it was eventful,” he answered. “Our Jedi ceremony was beautiful and the one we really felt was our actual wedding. The public ceremony was for everyone else. It was interrupted by a terrorist.”

    Mara’s eyebrows shot up. “Really?”

    “Well, it was right after the peace accord with the Empire. I feel strange here, but I don’t know how different things actually are in this…place. I assume you had a war with the Empire and—”

    “Yes,” Mara spoke over him. “From what I saw in your memories things are very similar in our respective galaxies. And I remember the pockets of insurrection after the peace treaty. Ours was signed in 14 ABY.”

    “Then you managed to achieve peace a few years before we did. We didn’t broker peace until 19. Mara and I married in 20. We had…well…issues to work out.”


    “So it seems.” Mara took his plate and put it in the recycler with hers. She watched him as he stood and placed their glasses and silverware in and closed the door, expertly turning the machine on to start a rinse cycle.

    An awkward silence stretched between them again, and Luke thought about how different things would be if this Mara were his wife. How they could go into the living room and watch the holovid, his hand idly stroking her hair as they laughed over some inane comedy. Their bond would be open between them and words would be unnecessary, but they would use them anyway, genuinely interested in what the other had to say.

    The awkwardness was unnerving, especially with this Mara looking so much like his own Mara had. In a way, it would be easier to have found a galaxy with a younger Mara, one where he would have expected open hostility or stilted interaction. Though he kept reminding himself that this woman was not his wife and never had been, it was so hard to look at her and to remember that.


    It had grown late as they talked and the skylanes had thinned out to the nighttime flow of traffic, their bright lights dimmed through the reflective transparisteel windows. Luke suddenly felt exhausted and knew that Mara must feel the same. He didn’t want to sleep away his time with her, but felt that she needed a break, a moment to be by herself and absorb his presence.

    “Do you mind if I were to use your guest room?” he asked, and could see relief in her eyes.

    “No, that’s…fine. Let me show you to it.” She led him down the hall to the room that in his universe had been Ben’s. “There’s a refresher…you probably know that.”

    “I do. Thank you, Mara.” He palmed open the door and stepped inside the room. “I really am sorry that I…surprised you.”

    He always did,” she said, again echoing his earlier thought. She didn’t meet his eyes as she turned to walk away.

    Luke let out a loud sigh and collapsed backward onto the bed, staring up at the ceiling again just as he had back in his own apartment. He reached out with the Force and felt Mara’s warm presence, so missed in his life. Hot tears gathered in his eyes, but he didn’t give in to them. Instead he focused on her steady presence and the fact that when he awoke, he would at least have a little time with her before he would need to leave her again. He let go and allowed her warmth in the Force to lull him to sleep.

    Sometime later he twitched in dream and turned over. Mara’s presence seemed so close and his eyes fluttered open. “Mara,” he murmured. He reached out with his hand, but the other side of the bed was cold and empty as it had been for several years.

    His waking mind returned to reality when he heard the soft slide of the door and light spilled in from the hall, leaving bright imprints on his eyes. He blinked and felt Mara’s presence move further away.

    He turned over again and looked out the large transparisteel window. A small smile threaded across his face as he realized she had been watching him sleep.

    She missed him, too.


    **

    He never really fell back into a deep sleep, drifting in and out instead and counting the hours until dawn broke over the sky. He had only been in the parallel reality for seven hours and had quite a few hours left, but they both stretched out in front of him and seemed far too short. He tried to meditate, to find some direction for the vision that had inspired him to use the transportation device, but couldn’t relax or find enough peace to drop into the meditative flow of the Force. He surfed the HoloNet instead and read up on the state of the galaxy. He was pleased to find that Daala was not the Chief of State in this reality, and that it was in fact still Cal Omas. He and Omas had not always seen eye to eye, but practically anyone would be preferable to Daala, who was anti-Jedi to the extreme.


    The entire galaxy seemed to be in good order, no rogue Sith ruining the government for a second time. In fact, reading about the peace that had bloomed since the Vong War set Luke’s heart to a kind of serenity, to know that his friends and family were flourishing here, even if their Luke Skywalker hadn’t lived to see it. It was something he would want for them, to be happy.

    His own heart and mind were in disarray, however. He felt there was a reason for him to be in this galaxy. Though he had assumed that he was supposed to see Mara, he was beginning to wonder if there was another reason. He felt that there was something off in this galaxy, but wasn’t quite sure what it could be. He resolved to ask Mara about it, but still lingered in the quiet room, almost embarrassed to venture out and face her.

    He had wanted so badly to see her, but now he felt foolish and chagrined at his impetuous nature. Of course this Mara wouldn’t rush into his arms or declare her love for a man who had never been her husband, and how unfair of him to impose himself on her.

    After she had left the night before he had thought of his Mara, of happier times with her and Ben, before her death had ripped their family apart. After perusing the HoloNet he couldn’t help but contrast how he had handled Mara’s death with how she had handled Luke’s, and found that he was lacking. He thought of Ben and what he must be doing on Adumar, and realized that he had a lot of making up to do with his son. Sixteen years old and a Jedi Knight, Ben hadn’t the chance for a real childhood. Luke smarted with that knowledge. He wanted to make things right with his son.

    But then, there was Mara. As much as his actions embarrassed him, his heart still ached for her. To be so close to her was both unnerving and intoxicating. She belonged in his life, and even just her presence in the Force was like a drink of cool water after a long trek through the Jundland Wastes. He felt alive again, energized in a way that he hadn’t in so long. To know that he had only a few scant hours with her made it even more bittersweet, because there was not time to say the things he wished to say or to bask in the warmth of her presence as he would like.

    But now he had only to face her and not make a further fool of himself. He didn’t want to waste this gift that had been given to him.

    **

    “Good morning.” He walked into the kitchen to find Mara sitting at the table with a cup of caf. She nodded toward the pot and he helped himself. He sat across from her at the table.

    Mara didn’t speak further as she tapped at her datapad and appeared to send a message. She noticed him watching her and answered his unasked question. “Just cancelling my classes for the day. I can’t take you with me, and I can’t leave you here alone.”

    “I’d be fine,” he said immediately. “I don’t want to cause any disruption to your life.”

    Mara’s right brow raised in a look he had seen from her countless times before. “Now you think of that.”

    Luke flushed, and looked down into his mug. “What I mean is that you should go on. I’ll just…watch the holovid or something. Maybe walk around.”

    “I’m not sure I should let you out,” Mara said. “If you’re anything like Luke, trouble will find you.”

    He grinned at her. “Mara used to say that all the time.”

    “She sounds very practical,” Mara said, the corners of her lips turning up as they often did whenever she tried to squash a smile.

    “You would know,” he said. “Anyway, if I can ask you—who is in charge of the Jedi here? How are they faring in the galaxy? Are they flourishing, I guess I should ask?”

    “Why wouldn’t they be? And there’s no one person in charge of the Jedi, we all are. We have a Council of Masters that listens to complaints and concerns. Together we make decisions on behalf of the Order.”

    “The council,” Luke repeated. “That’s a relief. I wasn’t sure that the Jedi would be thriving here. Where I come from, there’s been a lot of unrest. Unbalance to the Force. That’s why I became Grand Master. Can I ask you…where is Jacen?”

    “Jacen’s with Han and Leia and the kids on Naboo,” she answered, brow furrowed. “Why?”

    Luke took a deep breath. He had to know. “Because my Jacen…my Jacen was Mara’s murderer.”

    Mara drew in a breath, her shock in the Force huge. “Jacen? Jacen Solo? My nephew?”

    Luke nodded. “He had fallen. He was a Sith. His death and yours…so entwined. Two of the greatest regrets of my life.”

    “Show me,” Mara demanded, her caf forgotten as she reached out and grabbed his hand. “I can’t even process this. Just show me.”

    Unsure if it was the right thing to do, but unable to go back now, Luke grasped her hand in his and allowed her to see into his mind, to view the rise and fall of Darth Caedus.

    When it was over she snatched her hand back and looked at him, equal parts horror and pity on her face. “Jacen is a healer and Master. He’s Ben’s Master…but that Jacen is not our Jacen.”

    “Thank the Force,” Luke murmured./>/>
    Last edited by ginchy, Jan 30, 2014
  7. JediMara77 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2004
    star 4
    Yay! More EoA!!! [face_dancing]

    ?I guess?I guess I hadn?t really thought that far ahead.?

    Mara rolled her eyes as she regarded him from her towering position. ?I guess some things never change.?


    D'awww....

    I love that, even in this situation, Mara is practical! She wants to throw him out on his butt but she knows that she can't. (And, no matter what she says, she still loves her Skywalker!)

    The sight of her sent a spasm of longing through Luke, to think that he could have been the father of a daughter, that he could have had more children with Mara.

    You know I love the idea of Luke with a daughter, too. [face_love]

    ?Favorite,? she cut in. ?Yes, I know. I was having a sentimental moment earlier tonight.?

    ?Maybe it was the Force at work,? he murmured, delighted and enchanted when Mara released a small huff of surprised laughter. She immediately coughed to cover it.


    [face_love][face_love][face_love][face_love][face_love]

    God, the idea that, even 13 years later, Mara buys his favorite food just for sentimental reasons...

    Luke was not very hungry

    That's how you know he's really upset! :p

    LOL @ Betrys being born on their wedding night! Hysterical. I wonder what the story is behind that... [face_batting]

    I love how you emphasize the differences and awkwardness between them. She's Mara, but she's not HIS Mara...it's got to be so disconcerting. Of course, Farmboy never thought of that...

    His waking mind returned to reality when he heard the soft slide of the door and light spilled in from the hall, leaving bright imprints on his eyes. He blinked and felt Mara?s presence move further away.

    He turned over again and looked out the large transparisteel window. A small smile threaded across his face as he realized she had been watching him sleep.

    She missed him, too.


    Excuse me for a moment...

    :_| X infinity.

    His own heart and mind were in disarray, however. He felt there was a reason for him to be in this galaxy. Though he had assumed that he was supposed to see Mara, he was beginning to wonder if there was another reason. He felt that there was something off in this galaxy, but wasn?t quite sure what it could be. He resolved to ask Mara about it, but still lingered in the quiet room, almost embarrassed to venture out and face her.

    Hmmm...well, if Luke senses something off, you know there is. [face_thinking]

    Unsure if it was the right thing to do, but unable to go back now, Luke grasped her hand in his and allowed her to see into his mind, to view the rise and fall of Darth Caedus.

    When it was over she snatched her hand back and looked at him, equal parts horror and pity on her face. ?Jacen is a healer and Master. He?s Ben?s Master?but that Jacen is not our Jacen.?

    ?Thank the Force,? Luke murmured.


    Thank the Force, indeed!!!

    You know I lub it, girl. MOAR! MOAR! Oh yeah, we get "Birth" this week! One of my faves!!!
  8. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    A wonderful update, but I want to know why Luke of this world waited until Mara was about to give birth before he married her. Did Mara hide the pregnancy from him? I don't know if there is a back story to this, but I would love to hear it. I would assume that as soon as Luke knocked up Mara he would have popped the question. Unless, the Luke of this world was dating Callista at the time-- but my farmboy is not a cheater. Was it the fanfic "One Night on Coruscant" where Luke cheated on Callista with Mara? Boy there was fangirl backlash on that one...even though the fic was hot. LOL!

    Excellent update. I like the fact that Mara was watching him sleep. Very tender. And they get to spend the day together. Awesome!
  9. Piper057 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 26, 2009
    star 2

    :_|

    To see them so lost and awkward really hurts...They are so close and so far at the same time. :(
  10. Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 25, 2010
    star 4
    :_| So sad!!! I loved the awkwardness though - very fitting for the situation. I can't wait to read more of the back-story. I REALLY hope Mara realizes that even though this isn't her Luke, that she can still love him.
  11. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    This is all so bittersweet! @};-

    I, too, am dying to know how Mara got to be in labor on her wedding day and her entire back story, especially how ahe and Luke got together. :D
  12. divapilot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2005
    star 4
    I can't believe I didn't reply to the last installment. Well. I loved it anyway!

    This is very poignant. I love the details - and I love the name, Betrys. Lovely!

    You know, I was thinking about this story the other day (that is how you know it's a good story - it slips into your mind unexpectedly). I wonder how Luke is going to handle the end of the 24 hours. It's one thing to take the step to reunite with someone who is gone from you; it's quite another to say good bye -- again! -- forever. I don't think I could handle losing someone I treasured twice.

    Luke is learning some important lessons about his son, though. I appreciate that. I hope he applies them.

    Great job, Ginchy. [:D]
  13. LVB Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 23, 2005
    star 1
    Eeeeek!! I wrote out a huge review for Ch3, it looks like it didn't post. *smacks the internet* Can I just say that this story is ah-may-zing! I love the hurt and longing you equip both Mara and Luke with. I would probably make the same decision as our Luke did, going over. I have to admit, it does sound like something our Mara would do too!

    Loved the end moment with Mara wanting to see Jacen--a beautiful look into a world of possibility.

    :D [:D]
  14. kataja Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2007
    star 4
    As always with Mara, it was one step forward and two steps back. Some things never changed, and that thought gave him a small smile.

    ?And just what did you expect to do here for twenty-four hours?? Her voice was frosty cold again. She folded her arms in front of her chest and glared at him.

    ?I guess?I guess I hadn?t really thought that far ahead.?

    Mara rolled her eyes as she regarded him from her towering position. ?I guess some things never change
    .?
    That's because they're perfect!!!


    ?She?ll be thirty-one next week. She was born in 12 ABY?on my wedding night.?
    ?She was born on your wedding night?? Luke exclaimed, putting his own fork aside. ?That?s more than I can even imagine
    .
    I agree! You have to fill us in!!!


    Their bond would be open between them and words would be unnecessary, but they would use them anyway, genuinely interested in what the other had to say.
    *sigh* [face_blush] Exactly!!!

    Sometime later he twitched in dream and turned over. Mara?s presence seemed so close and his eyes fluttered open. ?Mara,? he murmured. He reached out with his hand, but the other side of the bed was cold and empty as it had been for several years.

    His waking mind returned to reality when he heard the soft slide of the door and light spilled in from the hall, leaving bright imprints on his eyes. He blinked and felt Mara?s presence move further away.

    He turned over again and looked out the large transparisteel window. A small smile threaded across his face as he realized she had been watching him sleep.

    She missed him, too
    .
    OMG!!!!!!:_| :_| :_|


    He thought of Ben and what he must be doing on Adumar, and realized that he had a lot of making up to do with his son. Sixteen years old and a Jedi Knight, Ben hadn?t the chance for a real childhood. Luke smarted with that knowledge. He wanted to make things right with his son.
    See, this trip has already brought sense back to him! :D


    ?I?m not sure I should let you out,? Mara said. ?If you?re anything like Luke, trouble will find you.?
    Yup! I hope it will!! [face_batting]


    ?Jacen is a healer and Master. He?s Ben?s Master?but that Jacen is not our Jacen.?

    ?Thank the Force,?

    Thank the Force!!! And the lovely author lady! [:D]
  15. RedGold Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2004
    star 4
    I'm not sure there is any way this can end where everyone is happy.

    Excellent! [face_devil]
  16. Jade_Pilot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 10, 2005
    star 5
    I'm with RG! [face_devil]

    Bravo, ginchy lee! =D=
  17. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    I still say make the device the Alternate Dimension Booty-Call machine!! Once a month Luke shows up...or once a week.
  18. ginchy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    You're all amazing and thank you for reading. This story means so much to me and to see you all enjoying makes me smile!! [:D]



    JediMara77: I agree, she wants to throw him out but just can?t bring herself to. She?s really wrestling with the idea of just WHO he is. And it breaks my heart, too, that she is still buying his favorite meal. As for Betrys?s birth?there is a story for it!! Coming right up? ;) I?m so glad that you liked the scene of her watching him sleep. One can only imagine what was going through her mind? hint, hint? I mean, what??? Thanks SO MUCH, lady!!! [:D]

    Jedi_Lover: She didn?t hide the pregnancy? but more will be revealed in the interlude I?m about to post. I am now also itching to write the full back story of their wedding. LOL I totally remember all the ?One Night? stories and Trace needs to come back and write me more of those!!! I?m so happy you liked her watching him sleep. That was another very early idea I had for the fic that breaks my heart/but I adore. Thank you!!

    Piper057: That is the perfect way to phrase it. They are so close but so far. They know so much about one another, but can?t really put it into practice. Thank you for reading!!

    Briannakin: Love your new icon, gal! I think she?s already struggling with that a bit because he can surprise her like her Luke did, and ? well, he?s just too dang hot to be a widower!! ;) Thanks, lady!!

    Hazel: Yes, bittersweet is the perfect word here. There are no easy answers but there is still love and longing. So much love and longing. Some more backstory is coming up, gal!! Thank you!!

    divapilot: Hey, lady, hey!! I?m so glad you like the name Betrys. I thought it was beautiful and I love how it starts with a B like Ben. And I?m so flattered that you were thinking of my story! And I think you?re so right. He did not think any of this through and has potentially made things worse for himself. Even if he goes home, he has knowledge of this other dimension and that might gnaw at him, you know? And Ben really is the heart of this story?that will come into focus even more as it goes on. Thank you soooooo much, lady!!

    LVB: Hey, gal!! Dumb internet, indeed!! I?m glad to know you liked chapter 3, anyway! And thank you so much. I?m so happy you?re enjoying it, because I know how much you like AU/dimensions. And I think you?re right?I think that this is something Mara could do, too? she might need more of an impetus to ?jump? but I think she would under the right circumstances. Also, a bit OT, but if you like Alternate Realities, you should really check out the new NBC show ?Awake?. I watched the preview sneak peek of the first ep online and it is awesome!! And thank you so much for reading, gal!!

    kataja: Lady, you always pick out my favorite parts and always just ?get? what I want a reader to get from the story. You are awesome!! More is coming up on Betrys?s birth in just a minute! I love how you picked out the part about their bond?it is such a wonderful and special part of their lives?and it belongs only to their spouses. How strange it must be for them to feel the echoes of that bond, but not the actual pull of it, you know?? Thank you, lady!!

    RedGold: LOL!! I think you?re right, but you know me?there will be a measure of happiness for everyone! I did learn from all the best angsty writers, though!! ;) Thanks for peeping in, gal!!

    Jade_Pilot: Thank you, girl!!! Missed you last night. I?m working on the last few chapters?hopefully I?ll be able to send you a bulk email with them in the next couple of weeks!!

    Jedi_Lover: That idea has so many possibilities. [face_mischief] I love it!!
    />
  19. ginchy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    This is Interlude 1. It is two short vignettes detailing Luke and Mara's wedding nights--in both dimensions. (And it's not 'shine, but I hope y'all will enjoy anyway. ;) ) They share an anniversary date, but more than just the marriage year was different... Thanks, as always, to JediMara77 for helping me reason this one out and for one very awesome and lovely Luke line... [face_love]


    Birth


    20 ABY

    Mara’s lips nibbled behind his ear. He struggled to keep her in his arms and continue pressing in the security code to their room.

    “Stang it,” he muttered as he pressed the wrong button again, while Mara continued her sexy assault.

    “You missed the osk.” Her breath was hot in his ear and she pushed suggestively against him.

    “Now you tell me.” He went through the code again, remembering the osk this time, but still the door didn’t open. He gave up as Mara’s lips trailed down his throat and her nails dug lightly into his shoulder through the fabric of his jacket. “You enter the code.” He moved her head to start his own line of kisses along her jawline. “I’m on my honeymoon.”

    “Cute,” Mara returned. She tilted his head to capture his lips in a deep kiss. They stood against the doorway like that, kissing and touching until Luke started to slide the zipper down her back. She broke away from his mouth, panting lightly. “The code, Skywalker!”

    “What? Oh, yeah.” He stepped back to allow her to drop to her feet. He pressed the first letter in the code and Mara shook her head, moving him aside with her body to enter the code herself.

    The door slid open and she gave him a feral grin, turning her back to the room and walking in, beckoning to him with a raised finger. He grinned and stepped over the threshold, a married man.


    **


    ALT 12 ABY


    “This is not how I expected to spend our wedding night, Skywalker,” Mara grunted. She rose up on her elbows, gasping for breath as the contraction eased.

    Luke wiped a damp cloth across her brow, removing the accumulated sweat. “Hey, don’t look at me. If I’d had my way we would have been married months ago.”

    “Don’t start with me.” Mara pushed his hand away, but there was a half-smile on her lips. “I just didn’t want to get married while I was still pregnant.” She picked up a cup of ice chips and spooned a few into her mouth.

    “Looks like we should have waited until tomorrow…” Luke grinned innocently at her, dodging a barrage of ice as it flew at him.

    “Cute, Skywalker,” she began, her new last name drawing out into a little scream as the next contraction ripped through her body. She pushed back against the pillows again, placing a hand on her belly and rubbing. She reached out with the Force to the unborn baby, soothing her as she had done in the past. Mara bit her lip against a smile as Luke lent his own love and support to his wife and unborn daughter. “I think,” she began, expelling a gasping breath, “that she couldn’t take your constant nagging any longer and decided to come on out so we could get married.”

    “Nah. She just wanted to celebrate with us.” He leaned in and kissed Mara’s cheek, his hand resting lightly on the swell of her stomach.

    “Yeah.” Her voice was thick and she cleared her throat. She grabbed his hand and squeezed. “Any minute now…” She bit off a moan of pain as the MD Droid came into the room.


    “Looks like you’re ready to push, Mrs. Skywalker…”


    **

    The rhythmic slap of the ocean waves against the beach awakened him sometime during the night. Luke turned in bed to find Mara awake and watching him, a tiny smile on her lips. He stared into her eyes for a moment, just watching her as she watched him. Leaning in, he kissed her smile, grasping her head and threading his fingers into her hair as she opened her lips beneath his and deepened the kiss. “I thought for sure I had worn you out,” he said when they finally broke apart.

    Mara groaned. “I thought I told you that cheesy lines like those are not allowed in this marriage.”

    “I’m afraid the cheesy lines come with the package,” he said, groaning when she reached down below the sheets.

    “Well, if I can’t have one without the other…”


    **

    “She’s… Stars, Mara, you’re amazing! She’s almost here!” Luke said, encouraging Mara as she pushed.

    “I can feel it, Skywalker,” she ground out between her teeth. “Now, shut up and let me…” She trailed off in a screaming moan.

    The MD droid uttered a soothing tone. Mara just growled at it, straining forward in her stirrups, hands digging into her own thighs. Luke climbed into the bed and supported her back, allowing her to fall against him as the pain became too much for her. He kissed her temple as she gasped for breath. “You’re amazing,” he murmured.

    The droid counted to ten and Mara reared back up, straining again, Luke’s comforting presence behind her spurring her through the pain. She grunted and everything seemed to go silent for a moment as the new life came into the world.


    **


    The sun was just lighting over the horizon as Luke exited the balcony doors and handed a cup of caf to Mara. She pulled his dress shirt closer around her and took an appreciative sip. His heart swelled to see her so carefree and beautiful, her hair blowing around her in wild curls. He had never thought he’d see her like this, Mara Jade so uninhibited and unguarded. He wanted to see her like this every morning for the rest of his life.

    He had almost given up the idea of sharing his life with someone. Had almost given up the idea of walking his path beside an equal, a help-mate, a lover. The idea that he could have missed this… He snuck another look at Mara, taking in the full measure of her beauty. The love he felt for her curled tightly in his stomach, a beautiful ache.

    His emotions cast out over their bond, his love meeting and melding with hers until they both gasped with the intensity. He reached out a hand and tugged her back against him, wrapping an arm around her waist as they watched the waves hit the beach. It had taken them so long to get to this point, but the journey made the outcome sweeter, their love deeper than he had ever thought possible. He held his wife in his arms and smiled.

    He had never been happier.


    **


    “She’s beautiful,” Luke whispered, looking at the tiny miracle in a pink blanket wrapped in Mara’s arms.

    Mara smiled, a true smile that revealed the tiny dimple in her left cheek. “She is.”

    The baby had Luke’s hair, fine and baby blonde, curling in tiny wisps about her ears. She was small and delicate and smelled so sweet. She had scratched her own cheek after delivery when she’d been taken by the droid to be weighed and measured. Luke’s eyes watered when he saw the mark, so upset to see an injury on his daughter so soon after her birth.

    But time in her mother’s arms and at her breast had soothed their daughter and now she looked at them sleepily. Her big eyes were still blue, but somehow Luke knew that they would change to the same clear green as her mother’s.

    “We still need a name,” Mara said, also sleepy, her voice thin and quiet in the darkened hospital room.

    “Well, I thought of one,” he said. “It means gift…and she is a gift to me, Mara, just like you are.”

    “So sappy, Skywalker,” she cut in, but squashed a happy smile. “What is it?”

    “Betrys. Betrys Jade Skywalker,” he said, running a soft finger over the baby’s delicate cheek.

    “Yes,” Mara agreed, leaning against him, and closing her eyes. “That’s her name.”

    Luke held his new family in his arms and smiled.
    He had never been happier.
    Last edited by ginchy, Jan 30, 2014
  20. JediMara77 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2004
    star 4
    I love this interlude. So much.

    The love is obvious for "our" L/M - we know what they've been through, how much they've grown to get to that point in life. And we love seeing them so happy and carefree.

    On the other hand, we have the "alternate" L/M...having a baby! I'm so glad you went with the backstory of Mara making Luke wait to get married. It fits her so well - because even in the alternate reality I think Mara would still be a little hesitant about marriage and babies. And I love the idea of him bothering her every day and her finally saying "FINE! Just leave me alone already!" And Betrys couldn't take any more nagging, either. ;) You know what my favorite line is. [face_love]

    And yes, you should write the backstory of the pregnancy/wedding, because I said so. :D

    [:D]
  21. Jedi_Lover Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    AWESOME! I love it! You are so good at describing people and feelings. I enjoyed this very much. I want the back story on how farmboy actually won her heart without screwing around for ten years and having a Force arranged marriage.
  22. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    Really loved the interlude! :D

    It's hard to tell which version would make L/M happier.
  23. kataja Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2007
    star 4
    Lady, you always pick out my favorite parts and always just ?get? what I want a reader to get from the story.
    Aww, thank you! And you always say things so sweetly! [:D]

    their bond?it is such a wonderful and special part of their lives?and it belongs only to their spouses. How strange it must be for them to feel the echoes of that bond, but not the actual pull of it, you know??
    Yes, I know! I mean, of course not [face_blush] - but I can imagine it so vividly!!!


    And it's not 'shine, but I hope y'all will enjoy anyway.
    lol - like we'd refuse to read! :p No way! But maybe a little shine a little later on? A small one...?...?..?[face_batting]


    ?You enter the code.? He moved her head to start his own line of kisses along her jawline. ?I?m on my honeymoon.?
    *falls off chair* Trust Luke to think on his feet - even here!


    He grinned and stepped over the threshold, a married man.
    Awwww.. Yess! That would mean so much to him! [face_blush]



    ?I thought for sure I had worn you out,? he said when they finally broke apart.
    Aiai, so cocky... [face_blush] :p


    ?I thought I told you that cheesy lines like those are not allowed in this marriage.?
    - and so starightforward! [face_laugh]


    ?I?m afraid the cheesy lines come with the package,? he said, groaning when she reached down below the sheets.

    ?Well, if I can?t have one without the other
    ??
    LOOOOVE this....



    Luke?s comforting presence behind her spurring her through the pain.
    I so remember this - exactly this! But all of this birth is so well written, the details of it, the fragmentation, really, the pacing...



    He had never thought he?d see her like this, Mara Jade so uninhibited and unguarded.
    I absolutely ADORED this line!!!

    It had taken them so long to get to this point, but the journey made the outcome sweeter, their love deeper than he had ever thought possible.
    I think this is so true. Except of course, that in this AU, they were as happy with a shorter journey - but still...

    He had never been happier.
    Oh, Luke... [face_blush] :_| [face_blush]
    *wipes a tear* I think every chapter so far had brought a tear to my eyes. It touches something very deep inside, you know? But something that is better off for being touched, though it hurts...
  24. Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 25, 2010
    star 4
    Awwwww! I think LM are both truly happy in each version. Wonderful. I love it!
  25. taramidala Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 1999
    star 4
    Oh ginchy, I don't know where to begin so I'll just say this: I love it all. I loved the use of flashbacks, too. And I want the "How Luke and Mara got together in the Alternate Universe" story!! :D
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