I'm Your What (A What-if) -- continued

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction Stories--Classic JC Board (Reply-Only)' started by JediGaladriel, May 13, 2000.

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  1. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
    And another thread goes berserk...

    Summary coming....
    The original thread is at Forum16/HTML/000498.html Forum16/HTML/000498.html
  2. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
    Summary thus far:

    What if....

    When Qui-Gon and Maul duelled outside the queen's ship, Maul leapt into the ship itself, and plunged his lightsaber into the hyperdrive just as the ship was taking off, sending everyone on board through a temporal dislocation...

    and

    ... as Lando piloted a skiff away from Jabba's burning barge, an old Nubian class starship suddenly appeared out of nowhere?

    So far:

    Qui-Gon gave up on his idea to try and keep Luke's identity secret, though he guessed it immediately. Anakin is delighted at having a grown-up son, and Amidala (still disguised as Padme, though Qui-Gon has stopped pretending to believe her) has figured it out. In a flash of insight, she has also figured out about Leia (though, to be fair, she had to figure something out -- Leia's been staring at her a lot because she knows precisely who this woman is).

    Darth Maul has escaped into the desert, where he has encountered Kitster (now known simply as Kit Jarai), who runs a home for war orphans of the Rebellion and the Empire called Sanctuary. It is their custom to extend hospitality to strangers, so he stays there.

    Vader who was keeping an eye on what happened on Tatooine, sensed the arrival of Maul and decided that he'd better get rid of a third Sith. He went to Exar Khun and built a four-bladed lightsaber, then proceeded straight to Tatooine.

    Anakin leads Padme, Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, Han, and the twins into Mos Espa in order to get parts to repair the Nubian (alas, the racing arena is gone, so his source of income has gone with it). They find Watto, who has some parts that can be adapted, but he makes Anakin work for them. Secretly, he contacts the Empire to collect the bounty. He keeps our intrepid travelers busy. Han returns to the Falcon, but Leia and Luke remain with the others in town. Leia helps Anakin do his work, and they like each other quite well.

    That evening in Mos Espa, Amidala figures out about Leia, and realizes that she's missing something in the logic. It occurs to her to seek out Kitster, and she slips out. When Leia, in a panic at the disappearance, gets everyone to go out and look for her, the Empire is waiting for them, and they are captured and detained on an Imperial ship. Young Anakin's quarters are surprisingly comfy. Nevertheless, he and Obi-Wan manage to get everyone out, and they are currently looking to retrieve their commandeered weapons before the Emperor arrives to interrogate them.

    Meanwhile, Vader has arrived on Tatooine, and he goes to Sanctuary, figuring that Kit will at least not be snapping pictures of him for the tabloids. A girl named Dritali, whose life he saved, is following him around. He senses Maul on the premises, but Kit is strict about them not engaging each other... and that's fine, because Maul is on his way back up the road -- to achieve his original objective of capturing the queen. Vader follows him, and arrives just in time to save Amidala. He sends her to Sanctuary (Dritali appears to show her the way). He fights with Maul though it only goes to a standstill, and Maul disappears back into the desert (Vader doesn't want to kill him, because he doesn't want to pollute the timeline. Also because the rules of the thread are that no one who properly belongs in TPM can be killed in the RotJ era.)

    Sabe leads the Naboo party out into the desert, where they run into Lando and Chewbacca (Han has told them that they need to get back into town, because he's heard that Vader's there, and he wants the others warned). Sabe and Lando go into town, and the rest of the party splits up. Jar Jar is with Sabe and Eirtae, and they are somewhere near Maul.

    At Sanctuary, Vader seeks out Amidala, and they talk briefly (she is perfectly aware who he is immediately). He is cognizant of the fact that he still loves her, and it doesn't bother him much. She is confused, and determines to follow him, even when he goes back into town to have Luke and the others released. He claims not to want her with him, but when stormtroopers try to hold her back, he informs them that she is wit
  3. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
    I'm going to pick up the story over here after all; the other thread may or may not come back -- I don't feel like dealing with the potential bugs right now.
    -----------------------
    Anakin stopped. His blood was suddenly cold and fiery at the same time, and his head was pounding. Across from him, Luke was staring at the arch that led into the corridor.

    Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon had used mind tricks to get them into the storage room where their weapons were kept, and they'd just finished getting them (Anakin had kept his broken piece of droid) when the air changed. Luke seemed to notice it most, though Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon looked up as well, and Anakin thought Leia got a little bit pale.

    But it was his own reaction that scared him, big time. He felt like all his bones were shattered and the bits were jiggling around in his muscles. He felt like diving for cover. And he felt like covering his face and crying in shame. "What's happening?" he managed to whisper.

    Luke picked him up with no preliminaries shifted him to his back to be carried -- Anakin couldn't remember the last time he'd been carried anywhere -- and said, "We're getting off this ship, now."

    No one offered any arguments. Leia led the way, saying briefly that she knew the ship's class.

    They wound down through corridors into a cargo bay, which looked to Anakin like a dead end -- all his earlier clarity about the ship seemed to have disappeared. Leia lifted a panel in the wall, and a huge section of the hull slid sideways. An alarm sounded somewhere above.

    "Run!" Qui-Gon yelled.

    The four adults spilled out through the newly opened hatch, and Anakin could hear Luke's labored breathing. "I'm slowing you down!" he said. "Drop me!"

    "I carried Yoda ten kilometers a day. I can -- " he gasped a breath " -- carry you two or three."

    "I can run."

    "I don't have time to find out."

    They were up and over a dune, headed out into the desert.

    Leia stopped and looked at Luke. "Where now? Can we make it to the Falcon?"

    "Maybe. I don't know. This isn't my city."

    "It's mine," Anakin said.

    Luke nodded, and finally let go of him. He slid to the sand. It was a good thing Luke hadn't dropped him to run -- his legs were numb from being held, and he just crumpled down to his knees.

    With an effort, he stood up, and started walking the blood back into his legs. "We went the other direction from where the queen's ship is. It's a long way now, and we'd have to go back through them."

    "I think perhaps we should find a different solution," Qui-Gon said. He put his hands on Anakin's shoulders, and that felt good and solid. The panic that had started in the ship began to abate.

    "There's a cave out there, where the jawas sometimes camp. I can get us there."

    Leia was already nodding, but Luke said, "No. I think your hideouts aren't the best places to be. We should find someplace new. Someplace you haven't been before."

    Anakin nodded and looked at his feet. In the calmness Qui-Gon had cast over him, pieces were beginning, slowly, to float together. "Are you going to tell me why?" he asked quietly.

    Luke started to speak, then shut his mouth and shook his head.

    Qui-Gon knelt down beside him. "Ani," he said, "whatever is happening here, you do not have the blame for it right now. Don't cast your eyes down. But Luke is, perhaps, right to seek out new shelter."

    Anakin nodded. "Well," he said, "I'll let you guys lead, then. Does anyone know the desert?"

    "I know the desert," Luke said. "Let's go."

    **********************

    Qui-Gon kept his hand on Ani's shoulder, partly to keep the boy calm and keep his mind from putting the whole picture together, partly to steady himself. He'd felt the new presence come on board the ship, and it was unmistakable. Anakin Skywalker wrote a unique signature on the Force, and it had broken into the world of the Imperial ship with a vengeance. It was shot through with hate and anger and fear, but its essentially self-ness was still there.

    The Chosen One had turned. Was this the Balance of the Force, then? This awful dest
  4. Marie D Padawannabe Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 12, 2000
    star 1

    Awesome JG! Keep it up! I all with Qui-Gon
    about wanting Anakin to be raised there..
    but i suppose that wouldn't work..would it?
    Kinda like Marty McFly in Back to the Future, if his parents DONT get together,
    he dissapears!Funky, but too cool.

    marie
  5. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
  6. SithAbigail Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2000
    star 2
    Okay, see, I'm totally stuck. Sorry guys! I have something but it *really* sucks. I'm going to try and post later tonigt. A Sabe-Lando-Jar Jar thing.
  7. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
  8. Lilu Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 15, 2000
    star 3
    More ... Pleaaaaaaase....
  9. Mr. P FanFic Archive Editor, Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 2000
    star 5
    We're working on it...just figuring out what to do next. There are so many possiblities, it's amazing. Just don't know what's gonna happen next. We'll post as soon as we decide waht wer'e going to do.

    --Mr. P
  10. Mistress Sudafed Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2000
    star 3
    My Apprentice....your Master will soon kill you if you don't post, and don't worry if it's stupid, anything will appease you Master, and everyone else
  11. SithAbigail Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2000
    star 2
    Lando brushed a hand through his hair, growing a little nervous but determined not to show it. The last thing he needed was a panicked Queen.

    Besides... This was Mos Espa and fear wouldn't ever be great to show in a place like this. You could never tell who could be paying attention and with a young, pretty girl walking with him....

    He might have taken risks by himself but even he had limits. Unlike Jabba, (And Lando couldn't hold in the shudder that came with the name) Lando had respect for other's lives.

    "What's the matter, Captain?" The regard in Sabè voice seemed true enough, if a little odd.

    "Nothing..." Lando threw a quick smile at the teen before changing the subject. "I was on an undercover mission right before this. With a Hutt. Have you ever seen a Hutt?"

    Sabè raised an eyebrow. "How could a Hutt go undercover?"

    The phrase gave him a a rather silly mental image of Jabba trying to sneak around in a cloak and a wig. It might have been the panic rising up but he chuckled a little.

    "Actually, the Princess and I were trying to save Han. I owed him a debt and it was my turn to pay up," Lando shifted uncomfortably. "I was really looking forward to getting off this planet. The last couple months have given me enough Outer Rim for a lifetime."

    "I can imagine how one could tire of this planet... There!" The last statement was punctured with a point towards a pair of stormtroopers. The two tried to make themselves inconspicuous until Sabè sighed in annoyance.

    "This isn't getting us anywhere... If they were smart, they would have left Mos Espa long ago. We might as well be looking for them in the desert!"

    Lando blinked, slowly. What was the one place he had heard most about Tatooine? Sith, the one place everyone in the rebellion had! Beggar's Canyon! Ever better, if he remembered the basic geography he had meomerized before becoming Jabba's guard, it was about an hour east.

    The dark-skinned Captain grinned in anticipation. The Imps would never know to look there. Who else but the Rebels had a farmboy-turned-Jedi known for comparing shooting down the Death Star to womprat hunting?

    "Come on Sabè. I know where they'll be headed."

    He walked away, heading out to the desert with Sabe jogging along next to him. "You know that I didn't mean for us to look in the desert."

    Which seems like a pretty good reason towards why this will be fun.

    Instead he said simply, "Yeah."

    An hour came quickly with the Queen making smart remarks and Lando laughing at her. Soon enough, they reached Beggar's Canyon and saw the group standing around.

    Obi-Wan and Luke were sparing, wow, Obi-Wan was good. But when will those jumps ever come in handy? If he falls off a roof?

    Leia was watching the spar. She looked like she wanted to get her mind off of something.

    Qui-Gon was lecturing Anakin about anger and hasty decisions. Well, if the kid was anything like Luke, it was time well spent. Only problem was, Anakin looked like his mind was elsewhere.

    Well, that wasn't that unusual, when he was a kid he'd never paid attention to lectures either. The thought was interuppted when Anakin stole a look at him and waved. "Captain Calrissian?"

    Lando repressed a shudder when he heard the title. Which was odd, he hadn't done that since Cloud City... With Vader.
    ***********
    This good enough Master Sudafed?
  12. RebelMom Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 20, 2000
    star 6
    I don't know about Sudafed but I liked it.
  13. SithAbigail Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2000
    star 2
    Rabè blew out her breath, she was just beyond excited now. The fifteen-year-old had kept a sheltered life before she had been chosen by the Queen to be a handmaiden. Still, even that ended up with her stuck in a palace all day with tending to the Queen or practicing her fighting skills.

    When she had discovered she was on a planet controlled by Hutts, instead of acting like anyone with sanity and being scared, she had felt overjoyed. That was mistake number 1.

    Mistake number two had come from not listening to her inner voice. She had just known something was going to happen but she hadn't wanted to look the fool and say it. Like she didn't look any stupider now, walking around town with a Gungan who wouldn't stop babbling about how they were all going to die?

    "Mesa thinkin' wesa in twoble!" Jar-Jar then did some odd thing where his tongue touched his nose. Rabè couldn't stop the smile that appeared on her face when Eirtaé reached up and bopped him softly on his head.

    "Maybe you'll be quiet now, hmm?" Eirtaé did a small mock-glare, she was great at those. Too great, apparently because Jar Jar started cowering.

    "Back on track--Hey, Jar Jar, there's no need to stop walking! Look, we need to figure out a good place to search... Eirtaé, you're good with psychology, where's a good place these people would go?"

    "Some place comforting. Homelike, maybe." Eirtaé's eyebrows crinkled as she thought.

    They went on that way for a few minutes until Jar Jar started whining about a loud sound.

    "What loud sound would that be, Jar Jar?" Rabè examinded his large ears before deciding that anything loud to him could just be a bug.

    "Da sound of bad things coming thisa wayz!" He started jumping up and down, full of way to much energy.

    Eirtaè sighed, " Jar Jar, nothing's around us." The younger handmaiden took a patronizing glance around them before stuttering out. "Rabè, do not tell me that's what it think it is, do not!"

    Rabè turned around and immediately wished she hadn't. A horned man with tattoos littering his face stood directly in her line of vision. "I'm sure it isn't." She paused. "It looks like it's much worse."

    "Do me a favor and don't have kids. I so don't think a child could stand this much comforting."
  14. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
    Well, here's hoping...

    Luke had climbed up into the rocks along the canyon wall to try and meditate. His emotions had been high and vacillating all day, from
    the sheer joy of seeing his father whole and innocent, to sullen rage at thinking what he had become. He thought he'd come the closest in Mos Espa, just before they'd been captured... he was angry at how things turned out, and he needed to acknowledge that and deal with it... but he wanted to save this boy.

    He loved his father.

    In a way, it was repulsive to know that. Was he so desperate for a piece of his past that he was actually willing to forgive Darth
    Vader, who had spread terror and destruction across the galaxy?

    But it didn't feel that way. It didn't feel like he was forgiving him at all. He closed his eyes and concentrated on his meditation -- not on the Force, or trying to see the future, but on trying to see his own heart. The vision that came was of himself, lightsaber raised, storming a vast fortress. It was guarded by Vader... but not Vader. In an upper window, looking helplessly down at the sharp rocks, was his Father, the boy down in the canyon now. He was begging, beseeching...

    That was wishful thinking.

    "Not necessarily."

    Luke opened his eyes, startled. Qui-Gon Jinn had made his way up to the narrow place, and sat perched on a sharp rock where Luke had been unable to find purchase.

    "You saw that?"

    "I apologize," Jinn said, giving him a warm smile. "I didn't mean to intrude. But you... do not block terribly well. The vision simply seeped out of you. The creature at the door, this is a person you know?"

    Luke nodded. "It's Father. Father as he is now."

    "So I feared." Jinn looked down across the canyon, and Luke noticed for the first time that Lando had arrived, with a girl about Mother's age, dressed in a colorful uniform. Her face was painted white. Lando was looking oddly at Father. Jinn sighed. "I had wondered about your mixed feelings, padawan. You have met, then?"

    "We have. We fought. He told me the truth."

    "The truth is a valuable gift to give."

    Luke shook his head. "Hardly a gift."

    "A difficult gift, padawan. Yet still a gift, I believe. This truth you know -- it has made you see things differently."

    "It's made me confused."

    "Confusion is the first mark of wisdom. Only a fool is always sure."

    Luke couldn't imagine why he found the conversation vaguely comforting, but he did. He smiled. "Maybe I'd rather be foolish."

    "So you say now."

    "Ben... Obi-Wan... told me that Vader betrayed and murdered my father. You know him. Why would he lie like that?"

    "He wouldn't. I imagine he believes it, at least from some point of view... "

    "Believed."

    Jinn's face grew slack and sad. "That is not an easy truth to contemplate. Obi-Wan is like a son to me."

    "And he was like a father to me."

    Jinn raised an eyebrow, dissipating the gloom. "Which I suppose makes me your spiritual grandfather."

    Luke surprised himself by giving a small laugh. "I suppose."

    Jinn grew serious again. "Luke, your burden is not an easy one to bear. But there is strength in you that you do not suspect. And your vision -- "

    "My vision was wishful thinking. Anakin Skywalker isn't a prisoner that Vader is keeping. They're the same person. I just want them to be different."

    "I can see that, and you're correct. It would be dangerous to begin thinking of them as separate people. But the man I saw in your vision, the threshold guardian... even he is not wholly lost, at least not in your view."

    "No, you're wrong, you don't know what I've seen... "

    "Look at your vision again, Luke. Look closely. Watch what you see. It is not realistically true, of course, but you sense something. You sense something and you have created it symbolically."

    Luke reluctantly examined his childish image again, feeling self-conscious now that he knew Jinn was looking. Father was standing at the window, looking down. Vader paced below the door, lightsaber drawn...

    No, the lightsaber wasn't drawn. Vader was watching and waiting, but he wasn't attacking. Luke himself was the one doing the att
  15. ami-padme Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 1999
    star 4
    Wow. That was fantastic imagery. And I like the interaction between Luke and Qui-Gon.
  16. I love Sci Fi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2000
    star 4
    Awesome. This is great so far but what is it doing on the 3rd page???POST MORE!!!!
  17. Queenie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2000
    star 1
    WOW!!!! That was great. Don't leave us now!
  18. Mistress Sudafed Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2000
    star 3
    EXCELLENT, my young Apprentice, er, and my non-apprentice too! If we are made to wait anymore.....zap tongue.gif
  19. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
    Okay, well, I kind of have to pack to move tomorrow morning, but the computer will be the last thing to go down. If I'm not completely dead when I finish boxing my stuff up, I'll put in something new here.

    [This message has been edited by JediGaladriel (edited 05-20-2000).]
  20. SithAbigail Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2000
    star 2
    I don't want to ruin whatever Gala's planning.. But if nothing's up later I'll try and post.
  21. SithAbigail Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2000
    star 2
    Eirtaé groaned to herself as the tattooed monstrosity motioned for them to follow. A little unsteadily, they did so, not quite sure what Tattoo would do if they didn't.

    Walking across the desert, Eirtaé had to shield her eyes from the biting sand. She could just imagine the galactic travel brochures. Visit Tatooine, for a day in the sun! There's always an empty beach, where you can perfect your tan. So, for fun in the sun, with gambling on the side, Tatooine!

    After many bitter mental tangents, the small group reached a transport. A very expensive looking transport. What is a ship like that doing in a place like this?

    Tattoo glared at them and ran a pink tongue over his fangs. He then started walking in, making it painfully clear they should follow. She had to stifle a giggle when she saw both Rabé and Jar Jar stick out their tongues at his turned back.

    Unwillingly, they followed Tattoo into the complex hallway mazes. As if trying to learn the layout for an escape course wasn't hard enough, Jar Jar kept mumbling, "Thism berry bad,"

    After a few minutes of that, Eirtaé really wanted to hit him. Unfortunately, that would only draw unwanted attention to themselves.

    Speaking of unwanted attention, Eirtaé held in a gasp as Rabé took out a bottle of bright pink nail polish and threw out the contents at Tattoo's back. Well, that's one way to get back at someone.

    Finally, reached a small sparse room, where a figure sat. He turned to face them and an aura of power hit her all at once, making her want to kneel and beg and scream for forgiveness all at once.

    "Ahh. The young Handmaidens. Thank you, Maul, they will be of great use. You may go now." The man faced the armored men in red. "Dispose of the alien."

    Rabé's voice rose, cracking just a little. "You can't do this! I don't know who you think you are but---"

    "I am the Emporer, my dear. And I can do whatever I wish." Eirtaé shudder as she watched him smile. It was sinister, it was wrong. It made her feel like she should go wash just from standing near him.

    "What do you want from us?" Eirtaé was shocked to hear herself saying that, she supposed her mind was running on automatic.

    "Isn't it obvious? Blackmail for your Queen and for my Skywalkwers." He chuckled a little. "For what is a Sith without a following?"

    Rabé, always one for information, spoke up. "I thought there could only be two, Emporer."

    "Yes, well, I'm not one for tradition. Besides, young one, when they had only two, did Sith rule over all? I do."

    Jar Jar, the ever straightforward, stupid guy he was, spoke up. "Thism berry nuts. Yousa berry nuts!"

    A red guard took a quick glance at the Emporer and in an attempt to stop the coming ire, spoke up quickly. "Your opinion matters so much to us, alien. It really does. Now come, it's cell-time for you."

    "That taken care of, do you wish to tell me how you got here?" The Emporer made sure his tone was pleasing, but Eirtaé wasn't falling for it.

    "Not really." Faster then she would have thought humanly possible, blue lightening shot out of the leader's fingertips. Rabé crumpled to the ground in a grotesque parody of a puppet.

    He turned. "Now, Eirtae dear, do you wish to tell me?"
  22. RebelMom Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 20, 2000
    star 6
    Maul and the Emperor have teamed up. Talk about complications.
    I will look forward to the next post as usual.
  23. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
    Well, I need a break from packing... So, Palpy's there already. Interesting... And I'm dying to find out where Rabe learned about the rule of two! Could be an important fact if someone else from Amidala's time has knowledge of the Sith! Hmmmm... (Gala ponders this.)
    -----------

    Vader could feel the Emperor somewhere nearby. His transport had landed, but his presence was so overwhelming that it seemed to come from everywhere at once, which wasn't helpful when trying to pinpoint a location. Whatever happened, he couldn't allow Amidala to see Palpatine. She would know everything then, and Palpatine was not enough of a fool to believe she would simply go back and act out the old script again. Almost enough of a fool, Vader thought sometimes, when feeling particularly morose -- his Master was powerful and intelligent, but his ego was so large that he often made very preventable mistakes by underestimating his enemies (and those he thinks are his allies, a soft voice whispered in Vader's mind, as it frequently did) -- but not quite.

    He could feel Amidala a few feet behind him, could almost see her face. She would be wearing her expression of practiced academic interest, her eyebrows ever so slightly arched, eyes looking pointedly at one object or another... never wide-eyed wonder, never disinterest. I am aware, that look said. I see everything and I understand everything, or will very soon. You can hide nothing from me.

    Vader stopped walking outside the room that contained his hyperbaric chamber (apparently, his presence had been expected in some quarters; a ship that suited his needs had been brought). "You cannot remain with me, Amidala," he said.

    "I will remain where I choose to remain."

    Her voice was neither angry nor defiant. She was stating a fact, nothing more. Vader smiled beneath his mask. "The galaxy has changed since you last walked in it."

    "I can't say I find it an improvement." She came around him, gave him a guarded look. "Though I suppose that if you really mean to send me away, you have the power at your disposal to have me dragged."

    "Yes, I do."

    She nodded. "Well, if that's really what you want, you can call the guards."

    It was not at all what Vader wanted. The urge to have her leave had only a slight advantage in his mind as it was; the idea of seeing her dragged away by stormtroopers -- almost certainly straight to Palpatine, he was beginning to think; it would solve all the problems Palpatine perceived to remove her from the picture -- was enough to defeat it. So he simply looked away from her. "You must leave," he repeated, though he had little hope of changing her mind.

    "And where would I go? Our chi -- our son has been captured, and escaped, and I don't know where he and my companions have gone. My ship is certainly observed by now."

    She started to say, "Our children," Vader thought. An interesting piece of information to stow away, and it... feels true. There is another. How? But this was not the time to pursue the matter. Her suspicions were already up. She was keeping her later self's secret out of some autocannibalistic loyalty. He thought it wise not to disturb it quite yet.

    "These are my private chambers," he said. "I will rejoin you shortly."

    "I'm coming in with you."

    "My private chambers."

    "So, I'm to wait in the hall?"

    Vader wanted to sigh -- loudly -- but of course it wasn't possible. "Very well," he said. "You may enter."

    She smiled. "Thank you."

    ****************

    Amidala entered Ani's quarters not knowing what to expect at all. Yesterday, his room had been neat, if packed with too many toys and projects for its size. These quarters were beyond neat; they were sterile. Surfaces gleamed dully at her, and terminals blinked in shades of green. A viewscreen dominated one wall. The only pieces of furniture were a small couch and a metal bubble of some sort that dominated the center of the room.

    Ani indicated the couch. "Sit here," he said. "I will rejoin you." He hit a control panel, and the metal bubble split open, dull teeth appearing in
  24. JediGaladriel Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 1999
    star 5
  25. Vee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 16, 2000
    star 3
    Absolutely beautiful, Gala. Great work.

    (You know, it used to be easy to get off the 'Net -- just leave the room -- but with this laptop, I can't escape that. Blessing or curse?)
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