Writer: Hopeful writer Rating: G For everyone Time Frame: Between THE RETURN OF THE JEDI and THE FORCE AWAKENS Characters: Han Solo, Chewbacca, Malla, Lumpy, other characters SUMMARY: Han travels to Chewbacca's homeworld. REUNITING WITH CHEWBACCA After setting coordinates for Kashyyyk on the flight console, Han leaned back in his pilot’s seat to enjoy the sights outside the Falcon’s cockpit window; the arc ringed moon of Tsugua, the Swanell nebula and the quad stars that twinkled in sequence in the distance. Glancing at the over-sized co-pilot’s seat, he smiled at the flood of memories. He was looking forward to seeing and working with his old pal again. Both their lives had changed quite a bit in the last few years, but as friends and partners that would never change. **** Swooping over the canopy of the gigantic trees of Kashyyyk, their limbs and leaves bending and swaying in the Falcon’s wind wake, Han navigated to the landing area he used when he took Chewbacca back to his home world years ago. He knew he was nearing the Wookiee village when he caught sight of several tree huts. Slowing the ship’s engines; visually searching for the familiar landing spot, he saw a couple of Wookiees making their way back to the tree line. The landing area had partially grown over with grass, weeds and vines, but circular patches of naked ground indicated where the Falcon’s landing gears had once settled and burned into the soil. Han landed the ship gently and began the shut-down process. A while later, the decompression hiss split the air as the hatchway opened and Han emerged from the ship. Looking around, he caught sight of Chewbacca, followed by another Wookiee as they moved out from the trees. “Chewie!” Han, hit the hatchway close button, jumped from the ramp and ran toward his friend, who was already loping toward him. As they met, Chewbacca lifted his friend off his feet in a big Wookiee hug and roar of joy; Han slapping the furry back. After Chewbacca set Han back on the ground the banter started. Han cocked his head to one side, “Looks like you’re gettin’ a little gray around the temples, old man.” (And you’re looking a little worse for wear.” ) Chewbacca spat back. Then, Han acknowledged and nodded to the other Wookiee. (Don’t you know who this is?”) Chewbacca asked with a smile. As Han looked closer at the shorter Wookiee, (who was still taller than himself, and reached Chewbacca’s shoulders) recognition dawned on him. “Lumpy!?!” He exclaimed. (“That’s right, Uncle Han.”) “I don’t believe it. Why, the last time I saw you, you only came up to my holster.” Han placed a hand on his blaster. “Now look at you!” (“He’s almost grown.” ) Chewbacca confirmed as Han gave Lumpy a hug. (“Let’s get home.”) He suggested. (“Malla’s been cooking all day and you can meet the rest of the family.”) **** The trio talked and laughed through the sun-beam shafts of the forest and brush on the way to Chewbacca’s hut, and the years that had separated them seemed to melt away. “You’ve added on to the place.” Han commented as they climbed the ladder up to the house. (“Had to when the twins came.”) Chewbacca answered opening the door. Han could already smell the aromas of cooked food. Malla rushed from the kitchen, (“My handsome one!”)* She ran and gave Han a big, squeezing hug; even the Wookiee females were strong. “Good to see you, Malla” Han greeted when he caught his breath. (“Come, come - meet the rest of the family.”) Malla urged and the Corellian followed her to the kitchen. Malla urged a small girl to come to her…(“ This is In-kwa.”) She said brushing back the golden blond fur from her face. The shy girl ducked her head, but looked up to see the man, her blue eyes twinkling. “She’s a beauty.” Han complimented. “I first saw her when I brought Chewie home after you sent that urgent message.”* Han brought the memory to voice. (“That’s right.”) Malla agreed. (“Had me scared to death.”) Chewbacca groused. (“Didn’t want to spoil the surprise.”) Malla replied with a smile. (“Let me show you the twins.”) Malla guided Han to the rough-hewn table where wooden high chairs stood on each side of a log chair. The two baby Wookiees were flailing their arms, shaking wooden rattles. (“This is our son, Kiff.”) Malla said, patting the shoulder of the light tan-furred baby. (“This is our daughter Weesa.”) She patted the shoulder of the light blond-furred baby. Motherly pride shone from her eyes. “You do good work.” Han teased as he elbowed Chewbacca, who thrust out his chest. All laughed. (“Now…everyone sit down at the table.”) She motioned to Lumpy and In-kwa as Chewbacca took the head-of-the-household-seat and Han pulled out a chair next to him. The twins gurgled and laughed. Han basked in the love, warmth and coziness of this home. He noticed the empty space at the other end of the table. “I was sorry to hear of Itchy‘s passing.” (“He lived a long Wookiee life and he will always be with us in memory.”) Malla told him as She passed bowls of food around the table. “This is good, Malla!” Han told her, when he tasted a spoonful. (“Can’t be as good as your Leia’s.” ) She responded. “Leia doesn’t cook. We still live military style at the Rebel base, so we have our meals in the Dining Hall. It’s flight meals when I’m on a run.” Han told her. (She’ll cook for you when you get a place of your own.”) “That’s why I’m going to do some commercial hauling….. legitimately this time.” He said with a smile. (“How is your Leia and your son?”) Malla asked. “Leia’s fine…busy as always…Ben is growing like a stiltweed.” Han replied around another mouthful. (“Any more children on the way?”) “Not that I know about.” Han laughed. (“Knowing you, it’s not from your lack of trying.”) Chewbacca teased. (“Chewbacca! The children.”) Malla nodded to Lumpy and In-kwa. Just at that moment Weesa squealed and flung her spoon in the air and a lump of swetata splattered on the side of Han‘s face. (“Weesa!”) Malla scolded. “It’s alright,” Han said wiping the purple food away with his hand. “I’m used to it.” Laughter ran around the table. **** Later, in the common room, while the smaller children played on the floor, conversation abounded as they talked and caught up the past years and Han detailed his plans to Malla; a rumble of thunder could be heard in the distance. (“Night rain coming.”) Chewbacca said, (“Keeps everything green.”) (“Best we all get some rest.”) Malla told everyone, moving toward the babies. “I’ll go back and stay in the Falcon.” Han told them, thinking Chewie would want to spend a private night with Malla before leaving. (“You’ll stay in Itchy’s room. It’s all ready.”) Malla told him. Chewbacca led Han to the bedroom. Upon entering, memories came back to Han again; of how it all began with Chewbacca finding him and Malla nursing him back to health. And how Itchy hated giving up his room to ‘that soldier.’* Han unbuckled and removed his blaster belt, laying it across a chair and began undressing. (“See you in the morning.”) Chewbacca told him, then, on impulse, gave him another rib-squeezing, breath-taking, bone-jarring happy-to-see-you Wookiee hug. “Good night, Chewie.” After Chewbacca left, Han tried to convince himself the burning in his eyes was from looking too long at the stars during flight. THE LATER ADVENTURES OF HAN SOLO BEGINS. * “Urgent message.” Comes from my story THE MESSAGE posted earlier on this site. * “I first met her.” Comes from my story THE MESSAGE posted earlier on this site. * (“Handsome one.”) Come from my story BY ANOTHER NAME posted earlier on this site. * ‘that soldier.” Comes from my story BY ANOTHER NAME posted earlier on this site.