Beyond ~~Paternal Instinct~~ 20 ABY, L/M, some H/L/Solo kids, OCs *DONE! EPILOGUE 12/14*

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Ridley Solo, Jul 17, 2011.

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  1. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    TITLE: Paternal Instinct
    GENRE: Drama, Angst, some Humor/Mush
    CHARACTERS: Luke, Han, Leia, Solo kids, OCs
    DISCLAIMER: George Lucas owns Star Wars and all the stuff associated with it. I'm just playing in the sandbox.
    SUMMARY: Luke reluctantly plays New Republic ambassador to a war-torn world and finds far more than he expects...

    ~1~

    Space was such an incredible contrast to the hustle, bustle, never-get-done-fast-enough pace
    of Coruscant. It was a marvel- even after leaving the atmosphere almost instant silence greeted
    the occupants of any starship.

    Though he had been to and from Coruscant many times in the past, the irony was not usually
    lost of the pilot of the X-wing that zoomed away from the immense city-planet. Usually it was a
    huge relief leaving the place. It was far too crowded for his taste. Though he had official
    apartments there, it never really felt like home.

    Today, however, he was far too deep in thought to breathe his usual sigh of relief upon exiting
    the atmosphere. It took the whistle of the astromech to bring him back to reality. With a flinch,
    Jedi Master Luke Skywalker blinked and turned to look at the droid language readout, which
    blinked out far too quickly. ?Huh? Sorry, Artoo. Didn?t catch that.?

    Artoo-Detoo gave an indignant beep, then repeated his previous message. *Coordinates set
    for Mynce. Ready for jump to hyperspace.*

    Luke sighed. Mynce. Once the subject for jokes among Rogue Squadron, the small planet
    was now the subject of much debate within the New Republic.

    Long before the Empire had risen to power, Mynce had been divided into two distinct halves-
    the Northern hemisphere held the vast majority of commerce and, consequently, wealth. The
    Southern hemisphere was home to mostly mines and industrial plants. This side did business,
    but little else. When the Empire had come to power, the schizm had divided further and the
    society had devolved into a feudal one, with the wealthy Northerners becoming wealthier and
    the working-class Southerners essentially becoming slaves to their well-off cousins. Once the
    Empire had fallen, the Southerners rose up against the North. Civil War had reigned for more
    than fifteen years until a single man, Jermus Fereen, had managed to stop the fighting and
    bring the two societies back together. It might had also had something to do with the fact they
    had run out of weapons, leading to an uneasy truce. That truce had been going for five years.

    A week ago Mynce had sent a message to the New Republic, asking to join. Many were wary
    of the war-torn world and said they just wanted more weapons so they could keep killing each
    other. The other Senators weren?t so sure. An argument had raged in the Senate for an entire
    week until Chief of State Leia Organa Solo had stepped in and proposed they send an
    ambassador of sorts to see for themselves whether Mynce truly wanted peace. Solo wanted to
    go herself, but was tied down for the next month. The Senate suggested she send someone
    who would be completely unbiased- a Jedi.

    Luke cringed. And not just any Jedi. They went right to the top and picked him.

    He could have refused. He could have pulled rank and said ?no, sorry, can?t do it, ask another
    Jedi?.

    But his sense of responsibility was far too strong. He knew what had been going on at Mynce
    and had to push it from his mind. He often wished he could do something to help. Heck, he could
    hardly see anyone in trouble without wanting to help. Mara Jade called it a superhero complex.
    Leia called it being noble. Neither of the quite understood. Whilehe knew that he couldn?t save
    an entire planet, he might be able to help one or two people?

    Artoo whistled again, startling Luke out of his thoughts. ?Sorry, buddy.?

    The droid whistled a question.

    Luke smiled. ?I?m all right, Artoo. Just thinking. Okay,? he said, switching gears, ?here we go.
    Next stop, Mynce.? He pulled back on the throttle, making the ship leap to hyperspace.
    Last edited by JainaSoloYJK, Dec 14, 2012
  2. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    A very intriguing start. Mynce and its internal conflicts sound like fair to lead to great drama and action --

    ;) I have to ask though - will Mara be in this tale, if only to rescue Luke [face_laugh] [face_mischief] and naturally sizzle sparks must follow :D - because of the mush [face_batting]

  3. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    Reminds me a bit of the American Civil War, but just a bit.
  4. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    JadeEyes: Not sure yet about whether or not to put action in there. I'm not used to writing FanFiction in this era and REALLY not used to writing action. But Mara? She might make an appearance...[face_mischief]

    Lady_Misty: Well, that's kind of where I got my inspiration. ;)

    BTW, fair warning, this fic may be a little disjointed. I began writing the main plot some four years ago and it was very vague. I know where I want it to go, I'm just not sure how to get there yet. [face_worried]

    Anyway, Part 2 coming up in 5...4...3...2...
  5. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    ~2~

    Mynce was a small world, not unlike so many others capable of supporting life, but unique in
    two aspects.

    First, the only viable route to the planet traveled through a tricky asteroid field. Most
    experienced pilots knew how to get through without much trouble, but its? tumbling rocks had
    flattened many an overconfident young pilot. The phrase ?getting Mynced? became a
    euphemism for a rookie pilot getting nailed his first day in an asteroid field.

    Second, the sharply-divided line on the planet made two distinct colors. The Northern
    hemisphere was a glistening sliver where the metropolitan areas were, interrupted by acres of
    green national parks and the occasional ocean. The Southern hemisphere had been wasted by
    overmining and was a mottled mixture of browns and grays. Little green remained on that part of
    the planet.

    Luke had fought back revulsion upon coming out of hyperspace for the first time and seeing the
    planet divided in half like mismatched halves of a toy ball. He navigated the asteroid field with
    ease and landed without any trouble at the agreed rendezvous point on the Northern side.

    Once he landed Luke was greeted with an unusually cold attitude. All of the landing pad
    attendants eyed him with curt stares and silence except for a yes or no. Luke took note of this
    as he scanned the landing area for Ambassador Fereen, Artoo tootling along behind him. There
    was a definite sense of hostility around here, but also something else. Not one to invade
    peoples? privacy, Luke blocked out their feelings and looked for his host in earnest.

    The landing bay was empty. Luke frowned in confusion and checked his chronometer. Yes, the
    time was right. So where was the Ambassador? He had promised to meet him. Perhaps he was
    shy, or just as hostile as the others, or-

    Luke paused. Someone was behind him. There was no sense of danger so he kept his hands
    far away from the hilt hidden in the folds of his robe. A strong sense of nerves emanated from
    the person so Luke decided not to make them even more nervous by spinning around all of a
    sudden. He decided to take a step forward and wait for them to speak first.

    ?Excuse me?.young man?? asked a baritone voice.

    Luke turned around to see a human man that could have been anywhere from forty to sixty that
    stood about six feet tall and wore the formal lavender and white of Mynce?s officials. His hair
    was halfway between black and silver, a look which his well-trimmed beard echoed. Any
    wrinkles were hidden beneath beard and bushy eyebrows. The latter were perched above very
    kind, but very tired blue-green eyes, as if he had seen too much but knew he had to keep going.

    ?I was wondering-oh! Master Skywalker!? The man exclaimed, sounding simultaneously relived
    and embarrassed. ?I?m sorry. I didn?t recognize you. Ambassador Fereen,? he said, extending
    his arm.

    Luke did likewise and was surprised at the man?s strong grip as they clasped hands in greeting.
    ?Ambassador. Pleased to meet you.?

    ?The honor is all mine, Master Skywalker,? said Fereen humbly. ?My speeder is waiting outside.
    Please follow me.?

    Luke nodded and took several steps before hearing a whistle and turning around to see Artoo
    following close behind.

    Fereen noticed and quickly walked back to Luke. ?It all right, your droid can come with us. As a
    matter of fact, I insist on it.? He turned aside to whisper. ?He?s likely to get stolen.?

    They exited the building and stepped into an old but expensive speeder. Luke waited until Artoo
    was in place and the speeder took off before speaking. ?Stolen??

    Fereen looked apologetic. ?Yes. For spare parts.?

    ?Is it that bad, Ambassador?? asked Luke.

    Fereen nodded grimly. ?I?m afraid so.?

    Luke shook his head, noting the earnest reconstruction efforts. ?Really? They seem to be doing
    well enough.?

    ?Here, yes. In the South, no.? Fereen sighed heavily and shook his head. ?The battle is still
    raging, Master Skywalker. You see, Mynce has been fortunate in always being self-s
  6. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    Sounds pretty bad.

    Poor child!
  7. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Excellent detailing of the social climate and the things that still divide the two halves. =D= I love the set-up you have here, great for a diplomatic solution, or at least a search for one, and a mutually beneficial alliance with the NR. :D

    But the last scene -- very heart-tugging!

    @};-

  8. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    Lady_Misty: Unfortunately things aren't going to improve much, at least not any time soon. [face_worried]

    Jade_Eyes: Thank you!

    I've already written seven parts of this fic but don't want to post everything all at once. I also want to polish up some of the chapters before posting.

    I will be starting a PM list if anyone is interested. :)
  9. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    ~3~

    True to his word, Ambassador Fereen took Luke on an abbreviated tour of the South of Mynce
    first thing in the morning, and it didn?t take long to find out why the Ambassador was so worried
    about that portion of the planet.

    The Southern half of Mynce was a faint shadow of the North. It was as if someone had taken
    Nar Shadda shrunk it, and covered it in lichen, mold, mildew, and rust. The buildings were of
    the same style as in the North, but had been around long before the Clone Wars. The few plants
    that did grow in the hard-packed ground were sickly and thin; no more than weeds. Between
    what used to be bustling cities sat the overworked mines, sitting like rust-colored gopher holes
    in the tired landscape. Tatooine couldn?t even compare to a place like this. Tatooine was poor
    but had always been so and its? residents had learned to scratch out a living from the harsh
    environment. Here there were clear signs of a better, more prosperous time but that appeared
    long forgotten. The people were as tired as the buildings and most were walking around
    aimlessly. Those that did work seemed so tired but too stubborn to give up. Their clothing was a
    motley assortment of worn coveralls and jumpsuits. Most of these people had been miners.

    Most disturbing was the inordinate amount of unattended children running the streets, most in
    hard-faced groups. Every so often a scowling teenager would peer out from behind an alley
    before ducking back in.

    ?Orphans,? Fereen explained sadly. ?The Southern half was especially hard hit during the war
    and left hundreds of children without parents. The older ones have formed gangs that do as
    much damage as adults while the younger ones are forced to work or steal just to eat.?

    Luke pushed back anger at the injustice. ?I thought you said Mynce produced more food than
    they could eat in a year.?

    Fereen nodded. ?Yes?the trouble is almost none of it is getting to the Southerners.?

    The Jedi flinched. ?Isn?t the North willing to trade even food??

    ?Oh, yes! They?d love to sell to the South. The keyword there is ?sell?. Few of these people have
    more than ten credits to their name. The North just doesn?t seem to understand that. Those that
    have tried to come down and see what it?s like have been robbed blind.? Fereen shook his head.
    ?It?s a very difficult situation.?

    To say the least, thought Luke as he and the ambassador got out of the speeder to walk. The
    Mynce seemed friendly enough, greeting the ambassador with nods and sometimes
    handshakes but their patience was clearly wearing thin. Luke couldn?t say he blamed them.

    * * * * * *

    The child had heard the speeder pass by her makeshift house in the back alley, but it only made
    her retreat further into her shelter. She stayed there by herself until the noise had stopped.

    Unlike the older children running the streets, she was alone. Any and all attempts at joining up
    with the older children had earned her laughter at best, a hard shove at worst. She didn?t know
    why no one wanted her around, but had learned to hide when she saw anyone older.

    But today her stomach drove her out of hiding in broad daylight in search of something edible.
    People were being extra careful with their garbage these days so there wasn?t more than a
    moldy crust of bread or a bone in there most of the time, and then they were covered with small
    biting insects. She had tried the weeds growing in the street but they proved spiny and bitter.
    Her only hope was stealing.

    The girl didn?t know about right and wrong. Something told her stealing was wrong, but it
    couldn?t be more wrong than starving to death. Some days were better than others. Once she?d
    found an entire meal left unattended at an outdoor eating place and grabbed what she could,
    but most of the time it was fruit and a few rolls, since she could carry those in her pockets with
    no one being the wiser.

    As she edged out of her hiding place, she saw a pair of adults walking slowly and thoughtfully
    along
  10. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Wonderful, pragmatic, and compassionate--Luke is being all three here. @};- :)

    LOL! He's still having internal exchanges with Mara. :D :* !!

    [face_dancing]

  11. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    I say it's time to fry someone!
  12. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    Jade_Eyes: In others words, he's just being Luke. And yes, Mara keeps invdaing his thoughts...she'll make an appearance later, so be sure and stay tuned! ;)

    Lady_Misty: Fry? Who??? :confused:

    Anyway, part 4 is coming right up!
  13. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    ~4~ (first half)

    Luke knew he had to be on his guard as he sent his Jedi senses into the alleyways and

    abandoned buildings. Street children, especially older ones, were often defensive to the point of
    being aggressive. Still, he kept his lightsaber out of sight. He wasn?t sure how receptive these
    people were to Jedi. He closed his eyes and searched for the telltale Force-signatures of
    children.

    Much to his surprise, there were none in the immediate vicinity- save one, and even that was
    small and faint?and frightened, Luke realized. He walked into the nearest alleyway and
    carefully looked around. ?Hello?? he called quietly.

    There was a scrambling and a crash, and all at once a small, ragged form ran around the far
    corner, knocking over several trash cans in the process.

    He had only seen the child for a moment, but even in that split-second he felt his heart sink. It
    was a single child, very dirty, wearing equally dirty clothing, and standing no more than three
    feet tall. Either this child was very young or had been stunted in his or her growth. Extending his
    Jedi senses a bit further, Luke found that it was indeed one small, human child. Fear and pain
    practically exploded out at him, and he flinched. Had they been hurt running away from him? His
    determination intensified and he crept quietly around the corner, not wanting to frighten him or
    her more.

    ?Hello,? he called quietly, his blue eyes searching the nooks and crannies for the tiny street
    urchin, stopping abruptly.

    The child was hiding behind a pile of discarded boxes, trembling. Not much was visible except a
    shock of matted hair that had once been blond, watery blue eyes, a flash of cloth that had one
    small patch of blue, and a set of grubby fingers.

    Luke was again assaulted by the strong sense of fear in the child and he immediately set about
    to calm it. ?It all right,? he said, putting feelings of peace behind his words. He slowly crouched,
    trying to look as unthreatening as possible. ?It?s all right. Don?t be afraid.? Slowly, he began to
    approach.

    The child whimpered and backed farther into what was now clear as a makeshift little cave with
    a pile of rags in one corner.

    The smell of a child that had gone unwashed and uncared for rolled out at him, but Luke didn?t
    recoil. He sat cross-legged in the dim doorway, projecting thoughts of comfort and calm even as
    he felt his heart breaking. He managed a smile and held up empty hands. ?It?s all right. I?m
    friendly. I?m not going to hurt you, I promise.?

    The child trembled in the corner, whimpering and trying to disappear.

    Luke sighed. He didn?t want to reach for the child, lest he or she (the gender was still
    indeterminate) become even more frightened. He realized that with the dim lighting anyone
    could look scary, so he reached for a glowrod. ?Would it be better if you could see my face?? He
    clicked it on and held it up. ?See? I?m not scary.? With the increased light Luke couldn?t help but
    flinch.

    It was a girl, perhaps five or six years old, wearing a much-torn and much-stained pair of blue
    overalls over a pale pink shirt that was equally stained. Her blonde hair hung in hopeless
    tangles to her shoulders and her dirty face was marred by tear furrows. But most disturbing of
    all was her right arm.

    The wrist was curled inwards and bent at an odd angle, perhaps broken. A large cut on the
    same arm was red and inflamed, with angry red lines spreading in all directions. Obviously an
    infection.

    Oh, Force?[i\] Luke felt simultaneous anger, fear, and urgency. There was no doubt now- he had
    to help this girl and get her medical attention or she would die. He stifled these feelings and
    continued projecting thoughts of calm and healing to the frightened girl.
    Evidently they had some effect because the girl?s expression changed to one of bewilderment,
    then recognition. She ran up to Luke and wrapped her arms around his neck, sobbing.

    Luke flinched at first. He was used to children looking up to him and
  14. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Awwww! Wonderful update. =D= =D= =D=

    I'm so glad Luke has rescued that sweet youngling who apparently has no one :( - hmmm. Recalls the title and his obsession with Mara -- oh squee!


    LOL

    [:D] !!



    ;)

  15. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    Jade_Eyes: Did you expect anything less from our favorite Jedi Master? ;)

    The second half of part 4 is coming soon!
  16. dm1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2004
    star 4
    Can't save everybody, but if each person who is able to helped one other person, would that help a whole bunch? One has to start somewhere.
  17. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    dm1: Amen! =D=

    Finally a new post coming up!
  18. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    ~4~ (second half)

    The speeder quickly went to the landing pad, where the ambassador called up his personal
    shuttle. They took the child directly to the nearest medic, where her arm wound was quickly
    assessed. Through everything, the child refused to let go of Luke?s tunic, so he stood next to
    her. Out of common courtesy her face and hands were washed so she looked a little less like a
    ragamuffin and more like a child. No one wanted to try and brush her hair yet- it looked pretty
    hopeless.

    When the medic finished his assessment and preliminary treatment, he sighed heavily and
    shook his head. ?I hate to tell you, Master Jedi, but she?s not doing too well. Her arms? infected
    pretty bad so we?ve given her some antibiotics, but I?m not sure how much good that?ll do given
    her condition. Dehydrated, malnourished, insufficient sleep?and her wrist? That
    looks like it was broken months ago and healed wrong. Looks like she hasn?t used it in as long.
    The muscles have already begun to atrophy.?

    Luke felt his concern grow. ?Will she be all right??

    The medic shrugged. ?I wish I could say I knew. I?ve done what I can- cleaned her arm up and
    begun to drain the infection, but she?ll need a lot more than that. What with the war and all we
    haven?t had sufficient medical supplies or equipment in months. I?m sorry, but I can?t make any
    guarantees.?

    Luke looked down at the girl, who was leaning against him- a drainage tube connected to her
    arm and several automated IVs pumping saline solution and antibiotics into her system. He
    gently patted her shoulder as an idea formed in his head. He sensed the ambassador approach
    from behind and turned around. ?Ambassador Fereen, what will happen to this girl??

    Fereen watched the youngster sadly. ?Well, if she recovers then we?ll try and find her family, but
    at her age?? he shook his head. ?So many records were destroyed during the war, including
    birth records. It could take months to find her parents, if she has any. In the meantime she?d
    have to go to one of our orphanages.?

    Luke sighed again and looked down the girl. Her blue eyes still held an emotionless gaze and
    her left hand still clung to his tunic with an iron grip. They can?t help her here, he realized. She?s
    not going to get healthy unless she can have the proper care.
    ?Ambassador?I realize this is
    very irregular, but?if I took the girl to Coruscant, she could get the medical care she needs.?

    The ambassador gave Luke a sad smile. ?I?m sorry, Master Skywalker, but until her family is
    found, she?s a ward of the state and cannot be taken off planet- unless you plan to adopt her.?

    Luke flinched. Adopt? No, the thought had never crossed his mind. He couldn?t imagine taking
    care of a child at this point in his life. He was far too busy. ?It wouldn?t be permanent,? he
    amended, ?it would just be until she?s healthy enough to come back. You?ve heard the medic-
    she can?t be cared for here. At least on Coruscant she?d have a better chance to heal.?

    Fereen sighed, shook his head, and smiled yet again. ?I wish all of our citizens were as kind-
    hearted as you. Master Skywalker. Yes then, by all means.? he reached to brush the girls? hair
    out of her eyes. The girl pulled away. ?We must stick with procedure, however. I?m going to ask
    that one of my security guards accompanies you to make sure the child is well-treated.?

    Luke nodded, feeling a surge of relief. ?Of course.? He looked at the medic. ?Would it hurt her to
    travel??

    The medic shook his head. ?I don?t see any problems from it. She?s stable. Just keep her still
    and calm.?

    Luke nodded in understanding and attempted a smile for the girl. ?Well, it looks as if you?re
    going to be going on an adventure.?

    The girl said nothing. She clung to Luke and rested her head against him.

    Luke felt awkward with the strange child becoming attached to him so quickly, but chalked it up
    to loneliness. Then again, most kids seemed to really like him...Luke chuckled and shrugged off
    the thought.
  19. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Member Since:
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    star 6
    :) !!! I was hoping that was going to happen :* !!

  20. Book-Geek Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2011
    star 3
    I just found this and I am absolutely loving it!
  21. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    I'm going to fry the idiot that caused so much suffering.

    She sounds so sweet! And Luke in a father role will be nice to see.
  22. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    Jade_Eyes: Hee-hee, if you like that, you're gonna LOVE the next chapter. ;)

    Book-Geek: Thank you! Glad you're enjoying it! [:D]

    Lady_Misty: Unfortunately it's a whole planet full of idiots.:rolleyes: But if you're looking for someone specific to fry, you'll have to wait a few chapters. Hee-hee writing Luke with kids is fun. :)

    Next chapter coming up!

    If anyone wants me to start a PM list, please let me know! After I post chapter 7 it'll be longer between posts 'cause I'll actually have to write more. :eek: ;)
  23. Ridley Solo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2010
    star 4
    ~5~

    They could not leave for Coruscant right away. There were people to contact and arrangements
    to be made, which Luke had to leave for. He managed to pry himself away from the girl but the
    minute he walked out the door, the child began to sob and fight the medic, trying to pull things
    out. No one could calm her. Finally the medic had to give her a sedative. She fought that too
    and wouldn?t stop crying until she?d passed out from exhaustion. While the child slept the
    medics managed to get her cleaned up and into a fresh set of clothes. Her hair was still too
    tricky to deal with.

    Meanwhile, Luke had managed to arrange transportation back to Coruscant- the New Republic
    would send a transport that had a cargo hold big enough for his X-wing -and was contacted by
    the internal department of Mynce with further information about the girl.

    Her name was Ami J?Caan. She was five years old. Her mother had died years ago during the war
    while the whereabouts of her father and any other relatives were unknown. Due to the backlog
    of cases like this, finding any relatives could take as long as two years.

    Luke was disturbed when he arrived back at the medical facility and found out the child?s
    reaction to his departure. He wished he knew why she had grown so attached to him in such
    a short amount of time.

    It was a tense jump to the capital. Once they landed a speeder Leia had sent ahead took Luke,
    Ami, and the Mynce?s security guard to the Imperial medical facility. There the still-unconscious
    girl was taken directly to the head medical droid, which just happened to be 2-1B. Luke waited
    outside the room for over an hour when the droid finally rolled out. Luke jumped up. ?How is
    she??

    ?The girl is resting now and out of danger. I was able to clear away the rest of the infection. Her
    wrist is reparable with surgery, however, with her general health so poor, she would not be able
    to handle the anesthetic at this point. She will have to remain on Coruscant forat least two
    weeks before the operation could be attempted.?

    Luke cringed. He didn?t think that would be a problem but in the meantime, where would the girl
    stay? With as deep in as he was now, he couldn?t leave her in the medical wing all alone for
    two weeks. He chewed his lip. ?Is surgery the only option??

    2-1B gave a reasonable interpretation of a nod. ?Yes. She suffered a fracture to the area
    approximately four months ago and it healed improperly. If she is to regain any use of her hand,
    it must be repaired soon, or an amputation will be necessary.?

    Amputation?. Luke glanced down at his own mechanical hand and shuddered. No child
    should have to go through something like that. He nodded. ?I understand. Thank you.? He
    walked alone the hall, thinking.

    Now he would have to tell Ami?s people how long she would have to stay and he was sure they
    wouldn?t like it.

    * * * * * *

    ?Two weeks?? Ambassador Fereen asked in disbelief. The hologram flickered at the
    communications console.

    ?At the least.? Luke quickly explained the situation.

    Fereen nodded slowly. ?Yes, I see?? he sighed.

    Luke raised an eyebrow. ?Is?that a problem??

    ?No- no, of course not,? said Fereen thoughtfully, ?but in order for her stay there to be legal, she
    would need to stay in the care of a temporary guardian.?

    ?Of course. When could one be here??

    Fereen smiled thinly. ?It seems as though you still do not understand our situation, Master
    Skywalker. We have no interplanetary transports to spare and no money for a stay at
    Coruscant. Any guardian she is under the care of would have to be living there already. Do you
    know anyone who would be willing to care for her for two or more weeks??

    Luke closed his eyes. Yes, he knew plenty of people more than qualified to care for a young
    child. Leia, for instance?but well-meaning as the Solos would be, a shy girl like Ami wouldn?t
    be suited for their noisy household. As the seconds passed only one option became clear, though
    he fought
  24. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
  25. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    Luke's selling himself short. Ami loves him!
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