Beyond Shattered Ties (L/M): COMPLETED! 28 Dec 2012

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Jedi_Lover, Dec 7, 2012.

Moderators: Briannakin, mavjade
  1. Jedi_Lover Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    Title: Shattered Ties (L/M)-- 6th Annual Fic-Gift Exchange. Fanfic for Mavjade
    Author: Jedi_Lover
    Time Frame: VOTF era
    Characters: Luke/Mara, Han/Leia
    Summary: I was asked to write a story for @mavjade for the Fic-Gift Exchange. It was to have the following aspects in the story: It would be written in the BEYOND THE SAGA era. A life threatening injury would need to occur. The injury would need to cause permanent change either physically or psychologically. It would need to be a hurt/comfort story.

    I could write about either L/M or Ben/Jysella or Ben/OC.

    I am really bad at Hurt/Comfort—that is Briannakin’s forte. I like happy endings. I wrote this story and it has the original ending you will see here and also I had an alternate ending that I showed Ginchy and she told me it was way too sad to post. So, I hope mavjade will like this although it is not a classic hurt/comfort story.

    ~JL~

    _____________________________________________________________________



    Water…Luke dreamt of cold water rushing over and around his body, water so frigid he actually shivered within the dream. A small smile graced his lips as he thought of his friend Mara. No, that’s not right—his fiancé, Mara Jade.

    ‘Mara…will you marry me?’

    ‘You mean if we get out of here alive?’

    ‘I mean regardless.’

    “Yes…I will.’

    The sensation of freezing water running over his face increased until he abruptly awoke, cold, shivering and half submerged in water, his head and chest resting on a rock outcrop. He looked around in confusion before he remembered where he was. He was on the planet Nirauan. Specifically, in the caverns under the fortress called The Hand of Thrawn. He had fought Sentry droids…he and Mara.

    “Mara!” he jolted to an upright position and scanned the dark flooded cavern desperately. He reached into his pocket and pulled out and activated a glow rod. It illuminated the large underground grotto as water swirled around the rocks and stalagmites on the cave floor. In the dim light he could see Mara floating face up in the water, her skin pale, and looking lifeless. It was exactly like the vision he had of her while he was on Tierfon.

    “Oh no! Mara!” He splashed through the water as fast as he could. He had put her in a hibernation trance, but he lost his grip on her in their journey through the rushing current.

    ‘Gods, what if it didn’t work?’ he thought panicked.

    He scooped her up in his arms calling her name. “Wake up Mara.” When she didn’t move dread quickly set in. “Mara, wake up!” Luke heard Artoo twittering somewhere in the cavern trying to tell him something. Luke didn’t understand what was said, but it reminded him that they had arranged to use a phrase to take her out of the trance. A smile flashed across his face as he said the words, “I love you, Mara.”

    He waited for a second for her to recover, but she remained still. “Mara, I love you. I love you, Mara.” Luke repeated urgently. “Oh no!” He scooped her up into his arms and moved her to an area where he could do rescue breathing. He placed his lips over hers and blew, filling her lungs full of air. He checked for breathing and a pulse and when he found none he repeated his action and then started chest compressions. “Please Mara, wake up! I love you, Mara. Mara! I love you!”
    .
    .
    .
    Coruscant Medical Center: Nerve-Regeneration Therapy Ward

    Luke sat next to Mara Jade’s bedside at the medical center. He rarely left her alone since her near drowning. That awful day on Nirauan was permanently burned into his memory. After what seemed like an eternity performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation he finally found a pulse and got her breathing on her own, but she remained unconscious. He quickly put her in a healing trance and got her to a New Republic medical center as soon as possible.

    The prognosis was not promising. She was without oxygen for quite some time and there was severe damage to her brain. Luke took some comfort in the fact that Mara had already successfully undergone neural regenerative therapy in the past. The doctor said that was a good sign and indicator that her body is receptive to the therapy. She completed the treatment days ago and Luke was told she should come out of her coma soon. It wasn’t soon enough for Luke; as the hours crept by he became more anxious by the moment. Mara lay on the bed surrounded by medical equipment and monitors. One machine beeped at a slow, steady pace as it tracked her heart rate. There was an IV running into her right arm and other tubes and wires running under the gray sheets she slept under. Her dip in the bacta tank had cleared up her multiple bruise and abrasions she suffered during their underground journey and the blaster burn in her shoulder she received from the Hand the Thrawn guards earlier in their adventure had totally healed.

    “I thought I’d find you here.” Luke’s attention quickly turned to the room entrance where his sister Leia stood along with her husband Han Solo. “Luke, you need to go home for a while and get some sleep,” Leia said as the two entered the hospital room and sat down in the chairs next to Luke.

    The Jedi shook his head miserably. “I can’t Leia. I don’t want her to wake up alone.”

    Leia reached over and put a hand on his shoulder and gave him a compassionate smile. “She won’t be alone. She has an entire medical staff dedicated to her and they'll notify you immediately when she wakes up.”

    Luke took a deep breath and let it out slowly. “No, I can’t leave.” He looked over to his sister. “Maybe you can bring me fresh clothing. I’ve been showering here, but I didn’t pack enough outfits.”

    “I’ll do that,” she nodded with an air of sympathy. “Luke, it’s not your fault she was injured. You did your best in a difficult situation.”

    Luke fought to keep his voice steady. “Unfortunately, my best wasn’t good enough.”

    Leia sighed dejectedly as she looked down to her chrono on her wrist. “Luke, I have a meeting at the Senate. When I’m done I’ll swing by your apartment and pick up a couple changes of clothing for you.”

    Luke gave her a sad smile. “Thanks, Leia.”

    She stood and gave him a kiss on the cheek and then turned to her husband and gave him a brief kiss on the lips. “Watch him,” she whispered before she left.

    As Leia left the room, Han turned to face Luke. “Now that your sister’s gone, maybe you wouldn’t mind telling me what is really going on between you and Mara.”

    Luke squirmed in his seat. He hadn’t told anybody about his engagement to Mara Jade. If she, Force-forbid, didn’t make it, he didn’t want anybody’s pity. “What do you mean?”

    Han rolled his eyes in an exaggerated gesture. “Luke, I've checked on you a few times in the last week and you never once noticed me. I am standing in the door and you are sitting next to Mara with your head in your hands and looking at the floor. How does a guy like me sneak up on a Jedi Master and walk away without you knowing…this has you tied up in knots…more so than when she had her first neural regenerative therapy. I never seen you so distracted.”

    “Of course I’m distracted my friend is injured and we don’t know if she’ll recover.” Luke’s voice took a defensive tone.

    Han put his hands up in a surrender gesture. “Whoa, I’m not saying that you wouldn’t we concerned about a friend. I know her injury is upsetting, but the things I heard you say to her while she slept tells me she is more than a friend.”

    Luke let out a sharp breath. “What did you hear Han?”

    Han rubbed his temples and looked like he wasn’t going to answer. “Not much. Once I realized you were talking to her I would walk away…but once I heard you say that you loved her.”

    Luke’s head dropped, but he felt the tension seep from his body at the prospect of talking to somebody about this. “It’s true. I love her and we’re engaged to be married.”

    Han sat back in his chair. “Okay,” he said slowly. “That I didn’t expect. I didn’t even know you two were dating.”

    Luke glanced down at the floor. “We weren’t.”

    “Weren’t what?” Han asked confused.

    “We never dated,” Luke clarified.

    Han gave him a perplexed look. “You never dated, but you’re getting married. That doesn’t sound like something you would do and it definitely doesn’t sound like something Mara would do. When did this happen?”

    Luke ran his hand over his face not wanting to answer. “Remember when I told you we were trapped in the room filling up with water?”

    Han nodded. “Yeah, you both thought you were goners.”

    Luke heaved a sigh. “It was then. We experienced a deep Force bonding while fighting the sentry droids and I realized I never wanted to be without her, so I proposed.”

    Han winced. “Couldn’t you wait until you were out of there? That’s not the best timing.”

    Luke’s eyes narrowed. “What do you mean by that?”

    Han adverted his eyes. “Nothing, I just thought you would find a more romantic place and time.”

    Luke frowned. “That is not what you were thinking.” He looked to Mara and then back to Han. “You think she said yes because she thought we were going to die…she agreed so I would die happy?”

    Han shook his head and looked like he would rather be thrown into a rancor pit than have this conversation. “Forget I said anything, kid.”

    He stood to leave but Luke grabbed the sleeve of his shirt pulled him back down into his seat. “It’s not like that Han. We bonded in the Force. It is something special. It is a very rare event between Force users. I read only a few Apprentices and Masters experienced such an intense bonding. It binds your soul together. To be apart would be unbearable.”

    “Maybe Mara knew that,” Han said softly.

    Luke was getting a little irritated. “What are you saying?”

    Han stood up looking terribly uncomfortable. “Luke, I don’t know this Force stuff and this is none of my business. You caught me off guard with the marriage proposal and I just blabbered my mouth without thinking like I always do. That’s why your sister is the politician and I’m not. I really don’t understand this bonding you are talking about, maybe it’s best to talk to another Jedi.” Han was backing out of the door as he made the last remark. “Sorry Luke, I have to go.” Han said and then quickly moved down the hall.

    Luke sighed and sat back down. He scooted his chair closer to Mara’s and clasped her hand in his gently. “You’ll wake up Mara. You’ll be alright and we can get married.” He leaned down and gently kissed the palm of her hand and then he laid his head down on the bed and eventually sleep found him.
    .
    .
    .
    He woke sometime later by somebody poking him in the head. “Farmboy, wake up.” There was another light pat on the side of his head before he sat up abruptly, looking disheveled and with lines across his face where the fabric of the hospital blanket made an imprint.

    “Huh,” he said groggily. He looked over and realized Mara was sitting up in bed and smirking at him. “Mara!” he shouted as he quickly rose, grabbed her in his arms and delivered a firm kiss on the lips.

    He could feel Mara stiffen in his arms as she gently pushed him away. “Luke!” she stared at him in shock. “With that kind of greeting I must have been at death’s door.” She looked around the hospital room. “What happened?”

    “What happened?” Luke frowned. “What’s the last thing you remember?” he asked with much apprehension. The doctors said she might show some confusion and possible memory loss, but nobody knew how pronounced it would be.

    Mara looked up at the ceiling in thought. “The last thing I remember is you putting me in a trance.”

    A wide smile blossomed across Luke’s face. That meant she remembered their bonding and his proposal.

    Mara looked to her shoulder. “It looks like the healing trance worked. My shoulder is healed.”

    Luke stood dead still. “What?”

    She rubbed her shoulder that was shot by the Empire of the Hand guards. “My shoulder feels good. Thanks.”

    Luke’s heart sunk. “Mara, you don’t remember fighting the sentry droids or the generator chamber filling with water?”

    She looked at him blankly. “No should I?”

    Luke groaned and sat down. “I was hoping you would…because you had accepted my marriage proposal.”

    Mara broke out in laughter, but when she saw he wasn’t laughing she went quiet. “What?”

    Luke leaned back in his chair. “We experienced an intense Force bonding and we decided to be together forever.”

    Mara shook her head. “A bonding? What type of bonding?”

    He looked up into her eyes. “Relax and I’ll see if it is still there.” He reached out with the Force and suddenly their minds were joined.

    Mara’s eyes went wide with panic. “Get out! Get out of my head!” She put her hands to the side of her temples as if trying to physically ward him off. Luke pulled away quickly. “Oh kriff!” Mara was hyperventilating and was actually shaking from the experience. Her head shot up and she glared at him. “Never, ever do that again. Kriff! I feel… violated.”

    Luke sat back into his seat suddenly nauseous. His world was crumbling under his feet and he felt like half of him died at that very moment. “Mara…” was all he could say before words failed him.

    Her eyes turned hard. “Get out.”

    Luke didn’t move. He didn’t think his legs had the strength to hold him steady. “Mara…” he muttered again his voice tinged with pain and despair.

    She squeezed her temples with her fingers and then looked back up at Luke, her features softening slightly. “Please Luke. Give me some space. Maybe at the time that this bonding occurred it was tolerable to me, but not now…not today.”

    Luke slowly stood and nodded in understanding. When he got to the door he looked back. “Can I come back tomorrow?”

    She closed her eyes as if in pain. “I’ll call you when I’m ready.”

    He gave a forlorn nod and left. As he walked down the hall he recalled all his failed relationships with women. Every one of his girlfriends had either died or had something heartbreaking befall them. He had worried that dating Mara would curse her, doom her to a tragic end…and he was right. He should have never attempted a relationship with her. It was doomed to fail. And now he was burdened with an unbreakable bond with a woman who didn’t love him or want him. The thought was crushing his soul and he knew things would never be the same.
    .
    .
    .
    Mara hadn’t been back in her apartment more than a few days before she was visited by Han Solo. She opened her apartment door and greeted a very upset looking Corellian smuggler. “Can I come in to talk Jade?”

    She didn’t want to talk to him. She knew this was about Luke and that was one subject she didn’t relish discussing. After Luke left her hospital room she refused to accept calls or visits from the Jedi. She did listen to his voice messages and the things he said broke her heart. He loved her, she could hear it in his voice and even from a distance she could feel it in the Force.

    She couldn’t see a way out of this mess.

    Luke’s love was unreciprocated. She liked him. She even enjoyed his company and sometimes she would reluctantly admit to herself that she found him attractive, but she didn’t love him and without love she wasn’t going to talk about his proposal or marriage.

    “What is it Solo? If this is about Luke, forget it. I don’t know what he told you, but I am not entertaining any of his fantasies.”

    Han walked past her and into her apartment uninvited. Normally Mara would protest and throw his sorry behind out of the building, but lately she found herself not having the strength to do much of anything. This situation was taking a toll on her mentally and spiritually also.

    She sighed. “Fine, come in.” She walked to the back kitchen. “Do you want a drink? I have juice or whiskey.”

    Han shook his head and uncharacteristically turned down an alcoholic beverage. “No, I need you to come with me to see Luke.”

    “Oh no, I’m not.” She said matter-of-factly as she folded her arms across her body defensively. She expected him to yell or threaten, but what he did do caught her completely off guard. He dropped down on her couch and buried his head in his hands and begged. “Please Mara. If you have any feelings for Luke, please talk to him.” Han looked up to her his eyes imploring. “Leia doesn’t know about the proposal, but I do. I know what he’s going through. When Leia almost left me for Prince Isolder I cracked and kidnapped her. I could have been thrown in jail for the rest of my life.”

    Mara scoffed. “I’d like to see Luke try that with me.”

    Han shook his head. “He won’t, he’s not like me. I gamble and I never consider the odds.” Han sat back on the couch and gave her a sad gaze. “Luke withdraws. You saw what happened when Callista left. That was bad, but in the last week…”

    “What happened in the last week?” Mara asked as concern for her friend crept into her consciousness.

    “I think he’s dying of a broken heart,” Han said and the way he said it told Mara he wasn’t trying to be overly dramatic. “He’s holed up in his apartment. I went in to see him and he’s always passed out drunk. It doesn’t look like he ate, slept or bathed since he last saw you.” Han looked her in the eye. “Jade, you have to remember that whatever happened between you two and the Force on Nirauan was not of his making. You can’t blame him for what happened. But I can tell you one thing…it would have never happened if he didn’t go to rescue you.”

    “Oh, so this is entirely my fault,” Mara shot back defensively.

    “No, but it would have never happened if he didn’t go rescue you. He wouldn’t be in his apartment drinking himself to death. You have an obligation to at least talk to him. I’m not asking anything more of you. Tell him you aren’t marrying him, but at least give him some closure and please…please try to keep your friendship intact. Totally cutting him off like this is killing him.” He stood and walked over to Mara. “Please come with me to see him…before he does something stupid.”

    Mara groaned. “Skywalker is always doing something stupid.”

    Han nodded. “I know. Will you come with me?”

    Mara chewed on her bottom lip in thought. Eventually she nodded. “Yes.”
    .
    .
    .
    They arrived at Luke’s apartment and Han leaned on the door indicator hoping to wake the Jedi. Eventually he gave up and used the keypad to unlock the door and entered the small apartment. Luke had closed all the drapes and shades making the residence dark and gloomy. Upon entering, Mara immediately sensed the smell of alcohol. As her eyes adjusted she could see two or three empty whiskey bottles sitting on tables and counters. She could hear a soft snore coming from the living room couch. Mara and Han walked over and found Luke asleep in an upright position, his head tilted back and resting on the back couch cushion. Mara shook her head sadly. “He is in bad shape.”

    “I know,” Han whispered in the dim light.

    “He’s probably in no condition to talk,” Mara remarked.

    Han pointed to the kitchen. “I’ll make some caf and we can try to wake him.”

    She shook her while looking at the sleeping Jedi. “No, I’ll stay here and wait until he sleeps off this hangover. You can go.”

    When Han didn’t move she turned to him and gave him a defeated look. “I won’t leave until we talk, Han. I promise.” She turned to gaze at Luke. “You’re right. If I didn’t need rescuing he wouldn’t be in this predicament.”

    “Okay,” Han said as he moved toward the exit. “Call me if you need anything.” He then left Mara and Luke alone.

    Mara sighed and sat down next to Luke and hoped he would wake up sooner-than-later.
    .
    .
    .
    Mara woke up with a start. For a moment she didn’t know where she was, but as she gazed around the unfamiliar surroundings she remembered she was in Skywalker’s apartment. She felt weight on her legs and looked down to find Luke’s head in her lap as he slept. She realize he must have fell over from his upright position at some point. Her immediate instinct was to stand up and let him fall to the ground, but she hesitated. He looked so…peaceful when he slept. Even with a week of facial stubble on his face and the smell of booze on his shirt it didn’t detract from his ever-present Farmboy charm.

    She sighed and gently ran her fingers through his blond hair. It was something she always wanted to do, but she never would admit that to him…ever. Eventually Luke’s eyes fluttered open and he looked up at her, his eyes glazed over by too much alcohol. He smiled. “I must have finally drunk myself to death.”

    “Why do you think that?” she asked.

    “Because I’m in the arms of an angel.” He gave a drunken grin.

    Mara rolled her eyes. “What greeting card did you get that sappy sentiment from?”

    He laughed and then looked at her intently. “Is this another dream?”

    She shook her head. “No, I was just ready to talk to you.” She took a deep breath and let it out slowly. “Luke, I can't do this bonding thing with you...not yet...maybe not ever, but I want to remain friends."

    Luke nodded as he slowly sat up. He had a forced smile on his face, but she can tell he was terribly disappointed. "Luke, I sometimes wish I didn't forget,” she said slowly and hesitantly. “It sounds like such a quick and easy way to get over years of deeply ingrained protective behaviors...but those barriers are still here with me now. The doctors said the damage was severe and I would never remember those moments you so cherish." She paused in thought. "Was I happy?"

    "What?" he asked.

    "In the short time that we bonded, was I happy?"

    He smiled. "We both were."

    She gave him a steady gaze. "The Force flipped a switch and changed me...but fate changed me back. Why?"

    He shrugged sadly. "I sometimes think the Force doesn't want me to be happy, to have a family. It likes to take away the people I love." He pulled his hand through his hair in frustration. "Why it decided to give me a glimpse of happiness and then take it away...I have no idea."

    "Maybe it was a mistake...maybe it was never meant to be."

    He shook his head adamantly and she could see him wince from the movement. "No, it was no mistake. We completed each other. Together we made a stronger whole. Mara…we loved each other." Luke's composure faltered as tears ran down his cheeks.

    Mara gazed as her friend sadly and put out her arms offering a hug. He leaned into her arms and laid his head on her shoulder. She could feel him take shuddering breaths and she knew he was crying. She gave him a warm embrace. "Luke, Luke please…please don't let this destroy you."

    "It's too late," he said sadly.

    She had never heard him so defeated. This wasn’t the man she once knew. This wasn’t the Luke Skywalker who could crush AT-AT’s with a wave of his hand or walk across Lava. The galaxy needed that man and she'd be damned if he disappeared on her watch. She pushed him away far enough so she can look him in the eye. "No, it's not too late.” She said each word firmly and with emphasis. “You are just going to have to man up and do things the hard way. No Force arranged marriage for you. You are going to have to ask me out, convince me you are the man of my kriff'n dreams. You need to do what every other male in this galaxy has to do to get a mate. You have to woo the woman. You have to take a risk."

    Luke tried to stifle a bleak laugh. "I'm to woo Mara Jade. That's a risk I might not survive," he said pessimistically.

    She stood up and straightened her clothing. "Well, Skywalker, I suggest you grow a pair and start taking risks." She smirked. "For Force sake, Han kidnapped Leia when it looked like he was going to lose her. What do you do? You sit in your apartment drinking and feeling sorry for yourself. Some Jedi."

    Luke sighed. "I thought you were here to comfort me."

    She scoffed. "Luke, I don't do hurt/comfort scenarios very well. Instead I am giving you a chance to win my heart." She leaned over and grabbed the front of his shirt and pulling him to his feet. Her face was inches from his as she gave a predatory grin. She leaned in and whispered in his ear. "I'm on planet for the next twenty-eight days. The chrono is ticking."

    She pulled away with a smirk, then turned and walked to his apartment door. Before she left she gave a stunned Luke Skywalker a wink, "Good Luck."

    Luke stared at the closing door dumbfounded. He was unsure if what just happened was real or an alcohol induced illusion.

    He smiled widely. ‘It doesn't matter if it was a dream or not. It's what I need to do,’ he thought.

    He had a goal and a purpose and he would pursue his dream...even if it killed him…but, what a way to go.
    Last edited by Jedi_Lover, Dec 28, 2012
    JediMasterJessica likes this.
  2. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    Poor Luke. :_|

    I hope that Luke's father's father knows that Luke deserves some happiness and gives it to him.
    Last edited by Lady_Misty, Dec 7, 2012
  3. Alexis_Wingstar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2006
    star 4
    I so love that last line. [face_laugh]
  4. Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 25, 2010
    star 5
    First of all, thank you for the compliment ;)

    Poor Luke, but at least Mara is giving him a chance! Great job. Hurt/comfort is not an easy genre to write, especially using Luke and Mara. Bravo!
  5. lukemaraben Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 1
    :_|POOR LUKE!!!!:_| Well, at least Mara finally decided to give him a chance.
  6. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
    Nice written story. But Mara is giving him a chance
  7. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    That almost made me cry. Love that Mara decided to give him a chance and especially when she told him to man up.
  8. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    =D= =D= You did superbly and gave a very interesting twist too - unbinding L/M at least on her end - but woohoo! She's given him a chance and a month to win her over. *sends over a bottle of Ruge* [face_dancing] [face_laugh] Oh, if this turns into a short story [face_batting] I'll be there, in less than a second! [:D]
    ginchy likes this.
  9. mavjade It's so FLUFFY! Fanfic & New Movies Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 10, 2005
    star 5
    That was fantastic, I love it! Thank you!! [:D] You did great with H/C!

    I love that in the begining I thought the main hurt was going to be Mara, but then you switched it up and made it Luke. I could feel Luke's pain though the whole thing; when Han told him maybe it was she was fufilling his dying wish to Mara completely rejecting him. It made my heart hurt.

    But at least she is giving him the chance to woo her! (I think we'd all love to see that as a continuation of this ;) )

    Thanks again! :D
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  10. ginchy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    That original ending made me tear up!! I love how this one ends with a bit of hope. [face_love] We all know that Luke can win her over. She's got a soft spot for farmboys! I like J_e's suggestion--send over a bottle of Ruge! ;)

    Wonderful job with writing H/C, gal! You did a great job, as always!!
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  11. Jedi_Lover Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    @Lady_Misty: Nevermind Luke's father, I wish the profic authors would give my Farmboy some happiness. :(
    @Alexis_Wingstar: Thanks, I'm glad you like it.
    @Briannakin : You are the queen of H/C. :D Thanks for reading.
    @lukemaraben : Not even Mara could watch Luke slowly waste away. She is telling him he needs to take risks...and therefore she needs to take a risk and give the guy a chance.
    @earlybird-obi-wan : Thank you. I am glad you enjoyed it.
    @Hazel : I am glad it didn't make you cry. My other version would have made you cry. I did not get the ginchy seal of approval for the other version.
    @Jade_eyes : Thanks. I don't know if I will continue it. Although it would be interesting seeing Luke tell Mara that he grew a pair.
    @mavjade : Thanks! I am really glad you enjoyed it. Happy Holidays!
    @ginchy : Thanks. I appreciate you looking over my two versions and leading me in the right direction.

    Thanks everybody for reading. I really appreciate it! [:D]
  12. Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2006
    star 5
    Loved the ending and how Mara dealt with the situation. The fic is just begging for the rest of the story, too. Great fic gift--and you did h/c well. :p
  13. immertreu Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 4, 2012
    star 1
    Poor Luke :_| This was awesome! I could feel his pain throughout the entire fic. Loved that there's hope in the end. I hope he'll come up with some wonderful farmboy ideas to woo Mara. ;)

    Will you continue this? ^:)^
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  14. Jedi_Lover Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    Okay, I will try to continue this, but I need help. I pretty much ran out of unique ideas for wooing a woman after writing The Alter of Waru. So what I will do is write the next chapter and then I will take suggestions as to how Luke should woo Mara and pick a suggestion and attempt to write that scene.

    ___________________________________

    Chapter two

    The next morning the door chime woke Luke. He sat up in bed and grimaced at the pain of his hangover. He hadn’t had anything to drink since Mara showed up the night before, but he was so intoxicated at that time that he wouldn’t be surprised if he remained buzzed for the rest of the day. He slowly sat up and reached out with the Force to attempt to ascertain the identity of the person outside. He smiled when he realized it was Han. He got out of bed and stumbled over to the door. He was wearing a t-shirt and boxer briefs, but he was also hung over enough to not care.

    He opened the door and ushered the older man into his apartment. “Come on in,” he said.

    “I just want to make sure you’re all right.” Han looked at his brother-in-law and smiled broadly. “You are looking better today. At least you are upright and mobile.”

    Luke gave a sad sigh. “Yeah, I guess I didn’t handle my depression very well.” He flopped down on his couch and gave Han a knowing look. “You let Mara into my apartment last night, didn’t you?”

    Han gave a lopsided grin and a slight shrug of his shoulders. “Yeah, that’s why I’m here…to see if you survived the encounter.”

    Luke laughed and then leaned forward and gave Han a quizzical look. “How’d you get her here?”

    Han smirked. “I stunned her and dragged her unconscious body to your apartment. I’ll tell ya, the Skytaxi driver that brought us over gave me some dirty looks.”

    Luke guffawed. “Yeah, as if you would be alive today if you did. No really, how’d you do it?”

    Han's smile slipped from his face. “I told her you weren’t handling what happened very well and asked her to talk to you. I’m sure she cares about you Luke, but your talk about love and marriage spooked her.” Han went over and sat next to the Jedi. “How did things go with you two?”

    Luke grinned. “She told me I’m not going to get a Force arranged marriage and I should grow a pair and ask her out.”

    “So are you?”

    “What? Grow a pair or ask her out?” Luke said with a chuckle.

    “Both?”

    “I plan on sobering up a bit more and then go over to talk to her.”

    Han nodded his head. “Luke, if it still doesn’t work out between you two…are you going to be okay?”

    The Jedi shrugged. “I think I will always feel connected to her. My bond with her is still strong. I can feel her now, on planet, her emotions churning…” He trailed off in thought. “I would love to have her as my wife…but if that’s not to be… if I can at least keep her as a friend…that would be enough, I think.”

    “How long is she going to be on planet?” Han asked.

    Luke’s tone became serious, “Twenty-eight…no, now it is twenty-seven days.”

    Han groaned. “That’s not much time to convince a woman you are her soul mate”

    Luke slouched on the couch looking defeated. “I know.”

    Han stood and reached out to give Luke’s shoulder a friendly squeeze. “You better not waste any time then.” Han gave Luke a thumbs-up and then walked to the door, but then paused and turned to Luke. “Remember, if you need any relationship advice you know who to come to.”

    Luke laughed, “Yeah Lando.”

    Han scowled. “Funny…Lando’s not married and I happened to hook up with the most beautiful Princess in the Galaxy…so if you need help, just let me know.”

    “Thanks Han.” Luke smiled. “I’ll need all the help I can get.”
    .
    .
    .
    Luke stood outside Mara Jade’s apartment trying to screw up his courage to ring the door buzzer. When she left his apartment the night before he was determined to woo her like any other man…but then he remembered she wasn’t any other woman!

    This was Mara Jade, Emperor’s Hand, and a Force strong woman. She was hard headed, stubborn and sometimes downright dangerous to be around. She wasn’t going to respond to his advances. She wasn’t in awe of his celebrity as a war hero and Jedi. In fact, it was almost like she abhorred those qualities in him. “What am I doing?” he whispered to himself in near panic.

    At that moment Mara Jade opened up her door. She scowled at him, arms akimbo and looking annoyed. “Even without a bond with you I can feel your nervousness seeping into my apartment. What do you want?”

    Luke gave her a sheepish grin. “I thought we could spend some time together. Last night you said I should take risks.”

    She scoffed. “I thought it would take a little longer for you to build up the courage to come over.”

    Luke smirked as he held up a bottle of Ruge. “I have a bottle of liquid courage and I took your advice and grew a pair.” Luke tried to keep a straight face but he couldn’t do it. “They are coming in quite nicely.”

    Mara tried not to laugh as she grabbed to bottle out of his hand. “You can come in, but no alcohol for you. I think you had enough for the rest of the year.”

    Luke walked into her apartment while nodding. “True, true…but I didn’t want to show up empty handed. Maybe we can share the bottle the night before you leave…that is if you haven’t killed me by then.”

    “That’s a big if,” she said flippantly as she put the bottle of wine in her kitchen’s cooling unit. “Go ahead and sit down.”

    Luke sat on his couch feeling extremely nervous. Mara came back from the kitchen with two bottles of flavored water and sat across from him on an easy chair. “So,” she said slowly as she handed him a bottle. “Why are you here?”

    “To woo you.” Luke said matter-of-factly.

    “You are going to woo me,” Mara repeated sounding amused.

    “Sure, I know how to woo a woman.”

    “What woman have you successfully wooed?” Mara asked with a smirk. “Don’t you usually find them trapped in a computer?”

    Luke shook his head. “No, sometimes I find them tied to a tree.”

    Mara burst out in laughter. “Seriously, what's going on inside that Farmboy mind of yours?”

    “I thought we could go dancing, dinner, a holo?”

    She thought about it. “I don’t know.”

    Luke leaned forward and stared at her intently. “Mara, it was you that suggested I ask you on a date to win your heart. Please give me a chance.”

    She sighed. “Okay, how about lunch tomorrow and maybe a matinee holofilm?”

    Luke looked disappointed. “I thought we could do something tonight.”

    Mara shook her head. “I already ate and I don’t feel like going out.”

    Luke shook his head glumly. “Okay,” he stood from the couch. “I guess I’ll see you tomorrow.” He raised his bottled water. “Thanks for the drink.”

    “That doesn’t mean we can’t talk,” Mara pointed out.

    Luke smiled as he sat back down. “I’d love to talk.”
    __________________________________________




    [Okay, what next? Any suggestions?]
    Last edited by Jedi_Lover, Dec 16, 2012
  15. Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 25, 2010
    star 5
    Yay! Your continuing it!

    Ummmm. Suggestions? I've gotten 9 hours of sleep over the past 3 days, so I'm the wrong person to ask. Ummm. Mara makes him caff, Luke starts to look at her music collection, they realize they don't know very much about their likes/dislikes so they ask each other questions???
    Lady_Misty likes this.
  16. ginchy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2005
    star 4
    Oh, hey. I wasn't sure if you were going to post that second chapter or not. I'm glad you did.

    I like Bri's idea there. They can find out that they have more in common than they would have thought. Also, that pesky bond is still in place, so Luke can feel that Mara is ...intrigued by him, perhaps? That would give him the confidence to keep the 'wooing' going.
  17. Demendora Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2010
    star 2
    Oh great! You decided to continue this story!:) And I agree with girls. Mara should find out, that Luke is not just one-sided person farmboy-turned-jedi, but he has his own interests and talents. Canonish Luke has built for his Mara an awesome ship, and we all know, that he is talented man.[face_love]
    Last edited by Demendora, Dec 17, 2012
  18. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Hi -- :D Stoked this is continuing. I also like the getting to know each other idea. =D= It's the natural next step - they could stick to the here and now things, move into dreams and goals for the future, and either touch on or avoid stuff from their pasts. They might actually discover in doing that last thing that each felt isolated or was isolated by various circumstances. [face_thinking]

    I'd like a chapter focusing on a lovely scene at a lake, a beach, or a moonlit garden. LOL

    I also think one of the other of them down the road should make a dinner for the other.

    I've also read where Mara helps with babysitting - even if it's after they're a couple -- and LOL it leads to hilarity. Unless you think that would really scare her away.

    **

    On a general note, snarky Mara is one I love and am used to seeing, but if she becomes more vulnerable, softer under Luke's influence [face_love] [face_love] -- "despite" herself [face_laugh] it will be squeelicious!
  19. Lady_Misty Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2007
    star 4
    Getting to know you is always a good place to start.
  20. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    I'm so glad you de ided to continue this :D and I agree that getting to know each other is the most natural next step.
  21. Jedi_Lover Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2004
    star 5
    @Hazel, @Lady_Misty, @Jade_eyes, @Demendora, @ginchy, @Briannakin: Thanks everybody for the suggestions. I went with "Get to know each other a little better." Hopefully it will be interesting...even though they are not bootknocking. :p

    _________________________________________________________________________________

    CHAPTER THREE

    Luke leaned back on Mara’s couch and gazed at her totally smitten by her beauty. Her reddish gold hair wasn’t tied back tonight but flowed over her shoulders loose and silken and just begging to be touched. Her deep green eyes glowed with a hint of amusement.

    “You have no idea as to what to talk about? Do you?” She said with a grin.

    Her words brought him out of his reverie as he realized he had no inkling as to what topic would be considered ‘safe’ or ‘appropriate’ at this precarious juncture of their relationship. He wanted to talk about his love for her and his hopes for the future, but Han was right, all his talk about love and marriage spooked Mara and she wasn’t a person who frightened easily. He would have to proceed cautiously. His throat felt suddenly dry and he took a long sip of the water she gave him earlier as he desperately thought of a topic.

    “Mara…when our bonding occurred on Nirauan, we knew everything about each other, but your injury made you forget. I know you don’t want to attempt the bonding again like we did in the hospital, but I would like it if you knew me better.” He hesitated as he tried to gauge her reaction so far. “Is there anything you would like to know about me? I’m willing to be totally open and honest with you.”

    Mara raised an eyebrow and gave him a skeptical look. “Are you saying you will answer all of my questions, no matter what it is, truthfully?”

    The way she said that made Luke reconsider the offer, but it didn’t seem fair that he knew every intimate detail about her life and she knew very little about him. He swallowed a lump in his throat as he nodded his head. “Yes.”

    Mara smirked and opened her mouth to say something, but Luke held out his hands stopping her. “Mara…if you wouldn’t mind…please be gentle with me.”

    She chuckled. “Okay, I’ll start with an easy question. When you were a child…what did you want to be when you grew up?”

    A wide grin blossomed across his face. “That’s easy, a pilot. I was always told my father was a navigator of a freighter. I pictured a life piloting a ship from one side of the galaxy to the other. I dreaded the thought of living my life on Tatooine, scratching out a minimal existence on a moisture farm…everyday the same thing—check the evaporators, repair the evaporators, then sell the water. It was boring and lonely.” He looked down and frowned. “I hate to admit it, but I was sometimes angry at my Uncle for not moving us into the city and taking a normal job.” He shook his head sadly. “The isolation was almost soul crushing.”

    Mara nodded sadly. “I know how that feels.”

    Luke looked up surprised and a bit confused. “Mara you grew up in the Imperial Court surrounded by people.”

    She made a dismissive wave of her hand. “I was surrounded by people who were never allowed to know the true me. Even my trainers never were fully briefed as to my status as a Hand or of my connection to the Emperor. I would have made a lousy spy if people knew. So, yes, I was surrounded by people, but I was still emotionally isolated from everyone.” A small smile came to her lips. “Even Karrde didn’t know about my Force talents or what I did prior to coming into his employment. Your father knew about me and so did Ysanne Isard.” Mara paused. “But the first person that I was actually upfront with about my past…was you.”

    Luke smiled. “Was that when you revealed your true feelings for me on Myrkr…at blaster point?”

    She gave him an embarrassed smile. “Maybe.” She took a sip of her drink. “At the time I convinced myself that I simply wanted you to know what you were guilty of. It didn’t seem right to kill a man who was totally clueless at to why he was going to die.”

    “See, being a naïve Farmboy does have its benefits. It bought me time to fully utilize my charm and manly magnetism on you.”

    “Pffff!” Mara snorted in disbelief. “Are you sure I was the only one with a brain injury on Nirauan?”

    “I’m fairly certain although you do seem to have an effect on my brain.” He grinned. “Next question? And remember, take it easy on me.”

    She looked up in thought. “You offered to bring me dancing. Do you even know how to dance?”

    “Believe it or not, I do. I don’t have a lot of practice, but I dare anybody to match me in doing the Ewok Celebration dance. He moved his hands in a swaying motion while he sang, “ Yub nub, eee chop yub nub. toe meet toe pee chee keene, g'noop dock fling oh ah” He stood and held out an hand. “Come on, join me, you know the words.”

    She waved him off. “No way Farmboy, for all you know that was some primitive fertility dance.”

    He sat back down with a chuckle. “Force, I hope not. Leia was the only woman there and she was surrounded by a dozen Rogue pilots, Lando and Han.” His eyebrows shot up. “Maybe that’s why she looked so happy that day!”

    She convulsed with laughter. “I didn’t know you had a sense of humor.”

    He beamed at her cheerfully. “In the past there wasn’t much to laugh about. It seemed like one awful event after another.” His smile slipped from his face as he recalled all the war and hardship that he and his friends had suffered. He shook away the thoughts and brought his full attention back to Mara. He wanted to keep this light so he could hopefully earn another day in her company. “Anyway, I do know how to dance. I used to go out with the Rogues to dance clubs and I watched and learned to do some of the common dances. I even know how to do a few dance steps from the classics.”

    A slim eyebrow rose up. “You know classical dance?”

    “Just the Coruscanti Waltz and the Hesitation Two Step.”

    She looked at him impressed. “Did your sister teach you those?”

    “My sister taught me the Waltz, but the Two Step was taught to me by my Aunt Beru.” He looked down at the floor embarrassed. “It was for a school dance.”

    She gave him a warm smile. “I can’t imagine a Tatooine farmboy doing a two-step…especially at a school dance. And I could never picture you asking your Aunt to teach you. I thought you would be too shy.”

    He gave her a sheepish grin. “I didn’t ask her. She caught me in my room rehearsing…practicing how to ask a girl to dance. I was looking into a mirror and saying, ‘Hi, I’m Luke Skywalker, would you care to dance?’ or ‘I’m Luke would you like to dance with me?’” He stopped and chuckled at the thought. “Anyway, Aunt Beru caught me and ask who I was going to the dance with. Of course, nobody…but I sort of hoped I could build up the courage to ask a certain girl to dance with me.”

    Mara leaned back with a grin. “This sounds interesting. Was she your first love?”

    Luke shook his head. “No, she didn’t even know I existed. I had a crush on her from afar. And I had very little hope of getting a dance with her; she was the most popular girl in school. I told my Aunt that there was little chance of me getting a dance.”

    “So why did she teach you the two-step…that seems like an odd choice.”

    “My Aunt went to that very same school when she was my age and she knew the last dance of the night was always the same classical song…it was the school’s way of clearing out the gymnasium. She also knew it was rare for a boy to ask a girl to dance since few knew those particular dance steps. She convinced me that if I learned the two-step I probably would be the only boy willing to ask a girl to participate in the last dance. So she taught me.” He turned slightly red in the face. “My poor Aunt’s feet were probably sore for weeks. I think I stepped on them three out of four times.”

    Mara smiled widely. “So did you get your dance with your dream girl?”

    “I got a dance, but not with my intended dance partner.”

    “So what happened?” Mara asked.

    Luke shook his head not knowing if the story would put him in a good or a bad light. “There’s no story. I danced with somebody else, that’s all.”

    She feigned annoyance. “I thought you were going to bare your soul to me…I guess not.”

    He flushed darkly. “Okay, I’ll tell you. I was correct that my crush would be continuously bombarded with dance partners all night. It was the usual jocks, team captains, class leaders, and the cool rich guys with fancy speeders. Finally we came to the last dance and the band took a short break to set up a couple instruments. I had my eyes on her. Her name was Sandra. She was standing across the dance floor laughing with some of her girlfriends when a group of loutish smashball jocks came up behind me talking about who they were going to dance with. I thought it would be Sandra or one of her friends, but they were betting each other to dance with a friend of mine named Daria.” He sighed but then continued. “She…I don’t know how to put this without sounding crass. She was a bit unattractive, with a bad case of acne and braces. Her family was actually poorer than mine and she wore a hand-me-down dress and didn’t have a stylist to do her hair like a lot of the other girls… but she was a really nice girl and smart. She would sometimes tutor me in history.” He took a deep breath and continued. “Anyway these guys were betting on who would go dance with her. If the guy had the guts to dance with her they would get so much money from the others and if he could get the girl to kiss them there would be bonus credits. Of course they would all have a good laugh with the guys in the locker room the next day.” He shook his head. “It was a cruel hoax.”

    Mara leaned forward transfixed by this story of Luke’s childhood. “Go on.”

    “Well, when the band started tuning up for the final song I started moving towards Sandra. I could sense one of the smashball players walking behind me and heading toward Daria. At the last second I veered away from Sandra and came to a stop in front of Daria. We both knew each other so it shouldn’t have been a complete shock to her, but I could see in her face she was overjoyed. I offered my hand and asked her if she wanted to dance.”

    He looked over to Mara and he could see her smiling at him. “She said yes and as we turned I noticed the smashball player looking surprised and unsure as to what to do. He turned to his friends and shrugged his shoulders and then I guess he decided to dance with a pretty girl from the 'in crowd'…so he asked Sandra.”

    Mara gave him a sad look. “Oh Luke, I’m sorry that you didn’t get your dance with your crush.”

    Luke chuckled. “Don’t be. I should have asked Daria to dance way before that. I felt bad because I realized I didn’t because my young self was just as shallow as those guys. It turned out well though. Daria and I had a nice dance and I don’t think I broke any of her toes that night. And those guys got what was coming to them.”

    Mara’s eyebrows rose. “How so?”

    “Well, one of Sandra’s friends heard that the smashball players had dared their friend to dance with the most unattractive woman in attendance…and since he danced with her…well her and her friends thought they were trying to insult her. All the cool girls turned a cold shoulder to those guys for the rest of the school year.”

    Mara laughed as she stood up and walked over to her music player and put on a tune one could do a two-step to. She then walked over and offered Luke her hand, pulling him out of his seat. “I would be honored if you would dance with me.”

    Luke grinned. “You’re not doing this as a cruel bet, are you?”

    She pulled him into her arms as they started the dance. “Maybe somebody bet me to dance with the most handsome Jedi in the room.”

    “Then I am a very lucky man that Corran is not here.”

    She gave him an inviting smile, her eyes dancing as she leaned in closer to him and whispered into his ear. “Shut up and dance, Farmboy.”
    Last edited by Jedi_Lover, Dec 18, 2012
    Gemma likes this.
  22. Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 25, 2010
    star 5
    Daww! Luke was a gentleman even in his teenage years.
    Lady_Misty likes this.
  23. Hazel Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 9, 2010
    star 4
    There is no way Mara is going to resist Luke. He's so thoughtful and sweet. [face_love]
  24. Demendora Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2010
    star 2
    Mara, dear, take my advice-Grab your farmboy and run!Because , believe me, as soon as you turn away, he will be taken! Such men as Luke don't lay around!
    Last edited by Demendora, Dec 19, 2012
  25. lukemaraben Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 1
    Perhaps my favorite part...although there were so many cute moments it's hard to choose! Loved it!!!
    Lady_Misty likes this.
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