main
side
curve
  1. Welcome to the new boards! Details here!

Beloved Monster (Story previously begun on Tears of An Angel)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction Stories--Classic JC Board (Reply-Only)' started by BelleBayard, Aug 29, 2000.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Okay, folks...here it is in all its glory. I'll begin posting what I've already done on Cinde's thread, then continue from there. One part of it I did first will wait until the appropriate moment (the part where Am leaves Naboo to give birth to Luke and Leia). Hopefully, those of you who enjoyed the story will follow it to this new thread.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Queen Amidala had entirely enough of doing business for Naboo. She'd been the head of state over ten years and had rarely taken time for herself. Not that she hadn't gone off planet, or even spent time with her friends on Coruscant. But actual time to think something besides thoughts of "This would be of use later" and "Now what does that *really* mean in the larger scheme" had had no place in her life since the whole Trade Federation debacle.

    Perhaps, now that things had calmed down a bit and Chancellor Palpatine had claimed to make things safer overall she could afford to become Padmé...really become Padmé and leave her Amidala mind behind in Naboo. She grinned...time to go visit her favorite Master and Padawan as her alter ego. Obi-Wan and Anakin knew about the subterfuge, but she'd been careful to keep her decoy tactic known to only a few. No one on Coruscant except those two should know who she really was. She called her handmaidens together to tell them of her decision and met with mixed responses.

    "Your Majesty, is this wise? With Chancellor Palpatine clamping down on interplanetary travel, you might have problems returning," Rabé protested.

    "Don't be silly! I think it's a wonderful idea...after all, it's been years since she's seen Padawan Skywalker. You must tell how he and Master Kenobi are, Your Majesty," Sabé teased, a glint her eye Amidala wasn't certain about.

    "Then it's settled," she announced. "Tomorrow I will depart as Padmé on an errand to Coruscant. I'll make up some sort of message from me to the Chancellor and once it's delivered I'll ask to visit the Temple to convey my...I mean, the Queen's regards to the Jedi." She smirked, then laughed outright at the various expressions on her friends' and bodyguards' faces.

    Still smiling, she pulled Sabé off alone to speak to her. "Tell me, my friend...do you have any special messages for a certain Jedi Knight we both know?" she teased.

    Sabé blushed and shook her head, then seemed to reconsider. "Well, just tell him hello for me...and that I still remember." With that cryptic remark, Sabé dipped her head and refused to answer any further questions.

    Amidala had the others make the preparations, though the Captain of her security guards voiced his objections as adamantly as Rabé had. Waiving aside his worries, the Queen departed the next day in her Padmé persona.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    "What a pleasant surprise, Padmé, though the Queen's message must urgent to send you at this time," the Chancellor declared, a strangely hard look in his eyes.

    Hmmm...I don't remember him looking like that before when I spoke with him. Oh, stop! You're here to enjoy yourself...just remember that.

    "I am sorry to disturb you, Chancellor, but Queen Amidala wished me to ask if you had made any further progress with the proposal regarding slavery in the Outer Rim." This was an actual concern of hers, but it also made for a convenient reason/excuse to send someone to Republic's center.

    "So the Queen still has some interest in that Skywalker woman, eh?" he muttered to himself, then a bland politician's mask seemed to drop over his face. "You may convey this message back to her... Tell her the matter is before the Senate and I hope for some sort of action in the next few weeks. Now, if that is all? I'm very busy."

    "Certainly, Chancellor. With your permission, the Queen has asked me to give my regards to the Jedi Temple."

    For a moment a terrible hate filled expression flitted across his face before his smooth exterior slipped back into place. With an impatient gesture, he shooed her away, then hurried back toward the Senate chambers.

    Now what was tha
     
  2. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Chancellor Palpatine insisted Amidala stay in one of the smaller rooms contained within his quarters. She would have rather stayed near Ani and Obi-Wan, but the Jedi rather frowned upon visitors staying in the Temple environs. Despite this, she managed to spend as much time as she could in her two favorite Jedi's company.

    Anakin must have asked Obi-Wan if he could escort her around Coruscant, for the second day after she arrived he came to her door. She had opened it and found a bouquet of exotic flowers thrust into her hands.

    "Thought you might like these...they reminded me of you." He grinned at her, bringing to mind the boy who'd given her that carved *japoor* snippet so long ago.

    "Why, thank you, Ani! That's sweet of you." She looked around, wondering where she would put them in the sparsely appointed room.

    He shuffled his feet, seeming oddly uncomfortable all at once. As if he had something to say. Amidala gave him a questioning look.

    "May I come in for a moment?"

    She stepped aside to allow him entry, then closed the door behind him. "What is it, Ani? Is something wrong?"

    "No...it's just... I apologize for what happened yesterday. It was wrong of me to take such liberties with you." He didn't meet her eyes, but she could see the misery on his face. "The flowers are to show how much I regret..."

    He trailed off and she knew he didn't regret kissing her, only that Obi-Wan had arrived and made her uncomfortable with what they did.

    "Ani, don't apologize. I...I was surprised, but I didn't mind," she protested, taking his hand.

    "Am...I...I..." He groaned and in single swift movement, he pulled her into his arms. He didn't kiss her, just held her as if she were more precious to him than anything else.

    She closed her eyes, feeling strangely at home in his embrace. Warmth flooded her and she wanted to burrow further into it. His scent wafted over her, mingling with that of the flowers she still held.

    He pressed his lips against her forehead, then held her away at arms length. "Enough, or I'll do something else I regret."

    "Very well," she agreed, though she nearly wished he would repeat his actions of the previous day. With a sigh, she turned to rummage through the few cabinets of her room until she came up with a water container. She filled it, placed the bouquet in it, then stood back to arrange the flowers. How lovely they were!

    "Lovely as you are, Am," Ani whispered in her ear.

    The heat from his body made her tingle as his breath puffed against her neck. *I will enjoy myself!* she vowed and turned to put her arms around his waist.

    "Ani, this might not be the correct this to do, but it feels right. I've always cared for you."

    "And I you, Am. Marry me," he asked urgently. "Let me be with you always."

    "What of your Jedi training?"

    "Nothing says Jedi can't marry."

    "But Obi-Wan..."

    "Forget him!"

    "Anakin Skywalker! What a thing to say of your own master," she protested. "I will not be the reason you leave the Jedi."

    "Amidala of the Naboo...you won't be. I'll finish my training...if you promise you'll marry me...soon."

    "Hmmm...we'll see. Let's see how this visit goes." She squirmed against him, trying to move away to no avail.

    "Not yet. I want to do this," he murmured, then kissed her again. Before she melted into a little puddle, Anakin released her. "Now...let me show you some of my favorite places."

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The next few days he kept her busy. At times she just watched he and his master practice...lightsabers, levitation...and sometimes she just watched them, even when they didn't seem to know she was present. Memories of Qui-Gon flitted through her head...memories of him predicting Ani's abilities within the Force. And she could see those abilities before her every day she spent near him.

    How could she ever allow him to leave the Jedi? He could help others with his skills and his caring? Yet how could she turn away from him? He was her friend...the other part of herself she constantly hid from o
     
  3. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    As she had feared, the time for her to return to Naboo arrived far too quickly. She visited the Chancellor once more as Padmé before she left and requested that he contact the Queen as soon as the Senate reached a decision on the slave issue.

    "Certainly, my dear. I'm certain the Queen wishes a speedy resolution of this problem...but you must understand how difficult it is to administer justice in the Outer Rim. The Republic must make their presence known there. At the moment, anarchy reigns...gangsters such as the Hutts control many of the systems." Palpatine gave a grim smile. "However, you may tell the Queen I intend to rectify the situation in the near future."

    Somehow, despite his reassurances, Padme/Amidala felt no confidence things would get better. In the week she had spent on Coruscant, she'd seen and heard intimations that the Chancellor had another, unspoken agenda. She tried talking to Anakin about it, but he refused to accept that Palpatine was more than the kindly man who'd helped her planet break the Neimoidian blockade. Much as she wanted to believe that, more and more she feared she knew her fellow Naboo citizen not at all.

    There was...something...not quite right about him. Some dark aura that seemed to surround him since his rise to Chancellor. She shook her head...perhaps she read too much into the occasional strange expressions she caught on his face.

    "You're just being overly dramatic, Am. The Chancellor wants the best for the galaxy...he wants to bring order," Anakin protested when she mentioned it to him on their last walk in the Jedi garden.

    "Oh, Ani...I'm worried. I know you think I'm just dreaming this up, but I'm not. Why won't you trust my instincts? Aren't the Jedi *supposed* to trust their feelings? Why can't I?" She felt like beating her fists against his thick head.

    Anakin laughed. "Now, Am. Don't take it wrong. Yes, we believe in that...I just can't see Chancellor Palpatine as some sort of evil manipulator, trying to take over the Republic."

    "Hmph! So speaks the great and wise Jedi, eh?" She stalked off, leaving Anakin staring after her with a puzzled expression.

    "Am! Wait!" He sprinted after her until he caught up enough to walk beside her.

    "I'm leaving in the morning. Going back to Naboo. Do me a favor, Ani...just keep an eye on the Chancellor and an ear open for things that don't sound right." She refused to meet his eyes, afraid he'd see the pain in them. He didn't trust her...even after all they'd been through...all he'd promised her.

    *Not true, Am. I do trust you...it's just hard to see him that way.*

    Amidala stopped abruptly. She didn't want to believe it either, but she sensed an awful power building and feared the focus lay behind Palpatine.

    Anakin interrupted her morbid thoughts as he pulled her behind a large tree. So far he'd kept to an occasional kiss on her cheek, her forehead, a brief brush of his lips against hers...a touch of his hand. Her imminent departure seemed to trigger a deep, almost frantic response in him.

    "If you're leaving tomorrow, I need to give you something to remember until we see each other again," he murmured as he wrapped his arms around her.

    No tentative kisses this time, no holding back...the fire burning in his heart seemed to sear her soul. He didn't hurt her, but the passion tightly reigned in before threatened to burst free. Her back scraped against the tree as he gripped her tightly to his body. His hands pressed her closer until she felt no doubt he desired her. But did he love her?

    "Yes, Am...I love you. Don't want you to go... " he whispered as his lips traced heated kisses against her neck.

    He picked her up, his hands under her bottom to fit her even closer. Despite her worries, she responded to his caresses, wrapping her legs around his hips, her arms around his neck.

    "Ani...I...I love you," she managed between his kisses.

    "Want...you...now," he groaned. "Waited so long..."

    A discreet cough intruded. For a moment, Amidala thought Anakin would ignore it, but after one last kiss, he relea
     
  4. Anakin's Angel

    Anakin's Angel Jedi Padawan star 4

    Registered:
    May 3, 2000

    I'm here....!

    aa :D
     
  5. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    She managed to board the transport without breaking into tears, though once she reached her cabin the cool facade melted. The encounter with Anakin had shaken her more than she wanted to admit. How she could return to Naboo and go on as if nothing had happened between them was more than she wanted to contemplate.

    In the days it took to reach her home again, Amidala forced herself to calm and tried not think about what might occur on Tattoine. Much as she knew it for the best that Anakin hadn't pressed her to consummate their relationship, at times she regretted not allowing him to truly finish what they'd begun. She kept to her cabin and studied the reports sent from Coruscant on the situation in the Outer Rim with a sinking heart.

    The Nubian landed in the Theed palace hangar and Amidala found herself surrounded by her handmaidens as she made her way to their quarters. Captain Panaka stood apart, studying her entirely too closely for her comfort. She gave him a nod, then shooed the others into the handmaidens' receiving room.

    "You must tell us all of what happened, Your Majesty," Sabé insisted.

    Amidala gave her a quelling look that told her decoy certain aspects of the matter were not open for discussion around the others. "I discovered a great many things which troubled me." *Not to mention a certain Jedi Padawan who troubled me...no small amount.*

    She spoke of what the Chancellor had told her about the slave situation on Tattoine and mentioned briefly that Obi-Wan and his Padawan had gone to see if they could help. Sabe's gaze drilled into her, but Amidala refused to elaborate in front of the others. The Queen pulled out the few small presents she'd brought from the Core and distributed them among the young women she considered her friends as well as her bodyguards. Still, she didn't feel comfortable telling them everything. Sabé noticed her wan expression in an unguarded moment and clapped her hands to get their attention.

    "Let's give the Queen some time to recover from her trip. Rabé could you help unpack while I take her back to her rooms?"

    Rabé nodded and grabbed Amidala's bag before the Queen could snatch it from her. Sabé ushered Amidala toward her room and the Naboo monarch couldn't help wondering if her decoy sensed there was more to her story than she let on. Once alone with Amidala, Sabe approached the subject again.

    "I know you didn't want to talk about in front of the others, but I need to know. What happened? You seem...troubled."

    "Oh, Sabé, I don't know where to begin. Something about the Supreme Chancellor bothers me." At Sabé's shocked expression, Amidala sighed. "Yes, I know. Anakin didn't want to believe me either. I spoke to Palpatine about the slave issue, but he didn't seem very open to the idea. Then he sent Obi-Wan and Anakin off to Tattooine to 'help' with negotiations between the Hutts and the Republic."

    She flung away to stare blindly out the window. "I don't trust him."

    "Why? Isn't that what you wanted? For someone to step in and stop the slavery practice in the Outer Rim? Who better than the Jedi?" Sabé asked.

    *But not my Anakin...he's too close to the problem!* she wept inside.

    "That's not what I'm worried about," she said aloud, then pushed aside her worry as she turned to her friend. "Obi-Wan said to give you his best."

    Sabé blushed and looked away. "Thank you. I had hoped he would remember me."

    "How could he not, my friend?"

    "What of Anakin? You seem rather sensitive about him," Sabe probed, turning the tables.

    "I...we..." Amidala ground to a halt, heated memories of their last minutes together flooding her. "He asked me to marry him," she managed at last.

    "Oh, how wonderful!"

    Amidala shook her head, uncertain how to explain her doubts and worries.

    "You refused? Why?"

    "I'm five years his senior, Sabé! Not to mention he's a Jedi Padawan. How can I take him as my consort? Obi-Wan needs to finish his training and who knows how long that will take."

    "Don't be silly, Amidala. There's a lot more than five years between Obi-Wan a
     
  6. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Anakin was bored. He knew he should concentrate on the negotiations, but the droning voices of Jabba and Obi-Wan nearly put him to sleep. Earlier, he had tried to see his mother, but Watto told him she had gone to Mos Eisley on an errand and wouldn't be back for a couple of days. More disturbing, his thoughts kept drifting toward Naboo...and Amidala. Reliving the last time he'd seen her, he felt his body respond and tried to tamp the sensations down.

    *Padawan, your attention belongs here! Those aren't appropriate thoughts!* His master's voice rang in his head, heavy with disapproval.

    "The young one's not paying much heed to our talks, Jedi Kenobi. Perhaps he has no interest in freeing the slaves," Jabba observed in Huttese.

    Anakin felt himself flush and ground his teeth, anger rising like a super nova as he thought of others like his mother and himself being bought and sold like animals...no worse. Even animals got some freedom.

    "My attention is where it should be, Jabba. Slavery is wrong. Supreme Chancellor Palpatine wishes the Hutts to put an end to it here and elsewhere. Master Kenobi and I are here to ensure the talks proceed as they should."

    Obi-wan gave Anakin a strange look, then continued where his Padawan left off.

    "My apprentice is correct. He has cut to the heart of the matter. The Republic cannot condone the continuance of slavery. Chancellor Palpatine has extended an offer to join the Republic if you end the practice with concurrent representation in the Senate."

    Jabba' laughter rumbled through his palace, his minions echoing the sentiment.

    "What would the Republic offer that I don't have here, Jedi?" He narrowed his slit-pupil eyes for a moment. "Tell Palpatine I will consider his proposals...both of them. He will hear from me within the week. As for my people," he grinned hideously, then popped a tiny wriggling creature in his maw. "I cannot speak for them, but I will tell them of the deal."

    Obi-Wan gave a curt bow, then motioned to Anakin to follow as they departed Jabba's palace. He said nothing as they walked to their speeder. In the half hour it took to return to Mos Espa, Anakin considered the 'negotiations,' such as they were.

    Once inside their humble accommodations, he tried to approach Obi-Wan about what had happened.

    "Master, I apologize for my distraction..."

    Obi-Wan held up his hand. "Don't. Perhaps it wasn't the wisest thing to send us here. There's too much history between you and Jabba."

    Anakin stiffened, hurt that his master thought he couldn't perform properly on this mission. Then he slumped, aware his behavior had been anything but stellar.

    "I *am* sorry, Master. This is important. I shouldn't have let my anger control my words."

    His master sighed and shook his head. "That wasn't the problem, Anakin. Though I could have wished for a little less heat in what you said, that perhaps actually helped our cause rather than hurt it." At Anakin's puzzled look, he continued. "Your distraction *was* my concern. I needed you there...all of you. Instead, I sensed you far away."

    Anakin's head came up. He wasn't ashamed of how he felt about Amidala and he would defend those feelings to anyone.

    "I love her, Master. I asked her to marry me."

    "Hmmm...I feared this might happen."

    "What...feared? What do you mean?"

    "A Jedi should be the servant of the Light. Affairs of the heart only distract one from the path of truth," Obi-Wan told him.

    A frown creased Anakin's brow. He knew better...he knew Amidala belonged with him. He could see no wrong in his love for Amidala and no difficulty in working for justice and right while married to her.

    "I *will* marry her, Master. If she'll have me," he said, his hands clenched at his sides as he struggled with his frustration.

    Obi-Wan returned his look with one of his own frustration. Anakin could almost hear his master's unspoken "I wish Qui-Gon had lived."

    Anakin flung away and out of the room, blindly seeking his mother in Mos Espa's warrens. Even if she weren't home, he'd rather stay there than wi
     
  7. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Amidala awoke from her nightmare, pain streaking through her. But she knew it wasn't her own. Anakin...something awful had happened to him. She rose and began to pace, unaware tears spilled from her eyes.

    Gods, she must find him. Dare she go to Tattoine? Or should she go to Coruscant and await his return? What to do, what to do?

    "Sabé!" she yelled. "Sabé, get in here now!" A guard opened the door. "Get my handmaidens at once. And prepare my ship. We're going to Coruscant."

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Amidala paced back and forth in the lush quarters Chancellor Palpatine had given her. On her way from Naboo she had debated the wisdom of appearing as herself and finally decided she must present herself as the Queen. All had gone smoothly...too smoothly, she thought, but no one else seemed disturbed at the Chancellor's continued rise to power.

    She looked around at very different accomodations she had been given as Queen in comparison to those she had as Padmé. And she remembered how Palpatine had greeted her.

    "Ah, Queen Amidala...to what do we owe the pleasure of your company?"

    *We? Are we talking the royal 'we' here?* she couldn't help wondering.

    "My handmaiden, Padmé, told me of your efforts in behalf of the slaves living in the Outer Rim. I wished to see for myself the fruits of your endeavors."

    "Of course," he murmured, offering his arm as he escorted her toward her assigned quarters. "Perhaps there will be word from the ambassadors I sent earlier. So far there has been nothing, but I am confident they will be successful."

    Amidala gave a slight nod, her heart in her throat. Ani... Where was he?

    Now she could do nothing but wait...wait for Ani and Obi-Wan to return from Tattoine. And pray she could give him comfort for whatever had happened on his home planet.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Obi-Wan found Anakin cradling his mother's body, C3PO standing guard over them. He bit back an oath. Though he deeply regretted Shmi's death, he feared this might drive Anakin further away.

    "Anakin...I'm sorry," he began.

    "Don't, Master," Anakin warned. "I don't know who did this, but I intend to find out. And when I do, I'll find a way to make them pay."

    "Vengence is a path to the Dark Side, Anakin. Don't take that step."

    "How would you know, Obi-Wan? You've never had anything like this happen to you." Then he stopped, an even more stricken look crossing his face. "I...I'm sorry, Master."

    Unspoken between them, the memory of Qui-Gon drifted, the way he had died at the Sith apprentice's hands...the way that same apprentice met his end at Obi-Wan's. How close Obi-Wan had come to falling to the Dark Side in his anger and grief at his own master's death.

    Anakin rose, his mother still in his arms. "I have to bury her. She at least deserves that."

    "Of course...may I help?"

    "She would want that, Master."

    Together, they carried Shmi to Beggar's Canyon and dug a deep grave not far from where Sebulba had nearly killed Ani all those years ago in the Boonta Eve Podrace. Heavy stones, hefted by the power of the Force, made a monument for her that even a Bantha would have difficulty moving.

    They stood quietly, contemplating Shmi Skywalker's final resting place. Anakin made her a promise. He would return to carve her a proper marker...and he would take care of the scum who'd killed her.

    *Vengence isn't the way, son. Let me live on in your love.*

    Anakin's head came up, searching the cloudless dawn sky. He'd never known his mother to have any Force power, yet clearly she felt strongly enough about this that she reached out from death to repeat her caution. Obi-Wan gave him a strange look, then suggested they return to Coruscant to give both the Council and the Chancellor their report.

    Anakin agreed, feeling numb and lost. Though he hadn't seen his mother in years, just knowing she was alive on Tattoine had kept him going when things seemed toughest. Now he no longer had that comfort zone...that knowledge there would
     
  8. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Somewhere deep inside, Amidala knew it wasn't wise to let things progress from comforting to more, but Anakin's pain was so raw she pushed aside the concern. She held him until the wracking sobs quieted, looking down at his face, nestled on her chest. With one hand she gently wiped away the tears from his lashes, then lay her chin on top of his head.

    "Thanks, Am," he said in a tear laden voice, burrowing closer to her.

    "I just wish I could change things, Ani," she murmured, pressing a soft kiss to his moist forehead.

    He didn't reply in words, just pushed himself up so he lay face to face with her. For a few moments he just studied her, as if trying to memorize each feature. Then he began to touch her...everywhere.

    His hands moved from her face to trace the delicate line of her shoulders, the swells of her breasts, the indentation of her waist, then came to rest on her hips, pulling her tightly against his own. This time he wouldn't allow interruptions or worries of what might happen. Hungrily, he devoured her lips with his own, moving his body against hers, inflaming her with his own need.

    She could barely breathe. Her heart pounded and liquid fire seemed to pulse through her veins. Cool air sighed against her skin as Anakin pushed aside her clothes to press kisses against her heated flesh. With a moan, Amidala arched toward his lips, her fingers holding his head nearer.

    *Need...want... Must have you, Am...* he sent to her as he flexed hips against hers, his body insistently demanding entrance.

    "Yes, oh yes, Ani. I am yours," she whispered, opening herself to him.

    Pain brushed away the sensual veils he had built, reminding Amidala she now belonged to him in every way. Despite his arousal, Anakin stopped, his face beaded with perspiration and creased with effort.

    "So sorry, Am. I...I didn't mean to hurt you," he panted

    "Shhh, it's natural the first time."

    He groaned, tears leaking from his closed eyes. "I hurt every one I love," he choked out, beginning to leave her.

    She gripped him closer. "Don't you dare, Anakin Skywalker. You finish what you've begun. I want this as much as you."

    The reassurance seemed to break what little control he had and soon any pain she felt faded away in the onslaught of sensations. Caught up in their lovemaking, their cries rang out without thought of who might hear them. In the aftermath of their passion, Anakin held her close, reluctant to move from her...his home. He pulled a light coverlet over them, then rested Amidala's head on his shoulder.

    "I love you, Am. You *have* to marry me. We belong together," he said softly, his breath puffing against her face.

    She hugged him tightly, filled with her own love and determined to not allow the world to intrude.

    "Of course, Ani. We'll take our vows in the morning."

    *I will always love you, Am.*

    *And I you, Ani... No matter what happens.*

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    In the Senate chambers a strange smile passed over the Chancellor's face for a brief moment. He had picked up the young couple's passionate interlude. Indeed, he had foreseen it...and the fact their offspring's potential would be greater than any other Force-user in history.

    For now, he would content himself with seducing young Skywalker away from the Jedi. Oh, he would need to take care...subtlety was most important. But soon...soon, he would call Anakin his own. He could bide his time, for things were progressing nicely in his plans, despite the setback he had suffered with the loss of Maul and the actions of Amidala against the Trade Federation.

    He had the Senate so snarled in procedure they would never untangle the knotted mess. With practiced smoothness, he continued to weave his web, awaiting in the center like some bloated spider for the tender flies to land in its sticky threads.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Obi-Wan felt the passion through his bond with Anakin. Though he knew his Padawan must be with Amidala, it didn't stop the answering response in his own body. His face flushed and he was grateful he had be
     
  9. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Anakin went before the Council to ask permission to wed Amidala the next morning. Obi-wan had cautioned him that they most likely would not approve the match. As usual, Anakin had stubbornly gone on to do as he felt he should rather than listening to his Master's advice.

    "Wise this is not," Yoda replied to his request.

    "Indeed. Master Yoda is correct," Mace Windu concurred. "With current tense situation in the Senate this could be seen as a move by the Jedi to annex Naboo influence."

    Anakin scowled, then tried to fix a bland mask over his face. "Master Yoda, Master Windu... My request has nothing to do with politics--"

    Mace held up his hand. "We are aware of that, however, you must realize there are larger concerns than individual needs."

    Before Anakin could open his mouth to protest, Ki Adi-Mundi spoke. "Padawan Skywalker, we understand your recent loss and mourn with you. Yet you must understand our position. Perhaps in the next few weeks the difficulties we now experience will ease." He gave a gentle smile. "Patience, Padawan. Cool your blood. The Council does not deny the bond between you and Queen Amidala...only ask that you defer any committment until a later date."

    He looked around at the other Council Members, who nodded in agreement.

    Eyes burning, Anakin took a deep breath, a burning resentment building. Always the Council wanted him to wait, to put aside his needs for everyone else. Look what it had gotten his mother. He clenched his teeth so hard his jaw ached, then buried the rage beneath an icy exterior.

    "Very well. I will abide by your wishes." *This time.* "May I expect notification of the appropriate time to announce our betrothal?" He struggled to keep any sarcasm from his voice.

    "Of course, Padawan Skywalker, of course," Mace assured him. "Now we must ask that you return to your Master. We have briefed him on another urgent mission which requires our assistance."

    Anakin dipped his head. "Masters." He strode from the Council chamber without another word. Anger, hurt and a sense of betrayal bubbled in a noxious brew deep inside of him as he wondered what wild goose chase they'd send him on this time just to get him out of their hair.

    As he strode toward his quarters, a protocol droid approached him.

    "Padawan Skywalker?"

    "Yes?"

    "My Master wishes to speak with you," the silver droid announced. "Follow me."

    "Excuse me, but I must go to my own Master."

    "The Chancellor has said he only wishes a few words," it replied, then turned to go without awaiting Anakin's agreement.

    With a shrug, Anakin followed, curious as to what the Chancellor would have to say to him, a lowly Jedi Padawan.

    *Master...*

    *Anakin, where are you?*

    *The Chancellor wishes to speak to me before we leave.*

    *Very well. Just be back as soon as possible.*

    *I will, Master.*

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    "Ah, Padawan Skywalker, so glad you could come," Chancellor Palaptine greeted him, holding out his hand.

    Anakin shook it, his bewilderment at this strange summons growing.

    "You wished to speak to me, Chancellor?"

    "Indeed. On more than one matter. First I wish to extend my condolences on the loss of your mother. I understand she was killed by anonymous persons on Tattooine. I assure you, I will look into this matter. Your Master told me of your part in the negotiations with the Hutt in control of the planet." He paused, studying Anakin's face until the young man wondered if he had a blemish on it. "As to the matter of your request to wed the Queen... perhaps after this mission things will resolve so that all the involved governing bodies look upon the union in a more favorable light." With a beneficent smile, he continued. "And
    perhaps, I might be of assistance. Return when you are finished and we will discuss this further."

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Anakin wasn't entirely certain how he left the Chancellor's quarters, nor how he ended up before his Master's door. Obi-Wan opened it and gave him a perturbed look.

    "Anakin, are you all right?"

    "I...I don't know."

    "What
     
  10. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Amidala returned to Naboo and sequestered herself in her quarters for the first day. She knew she should be available to hear cases, yet she couldn't face that chore yet. Sabe remained with her, oddly quiet and even in her own soul-searching, Amidala wondered at the cause.

    That evening she emerged from her gloomy thoughts to dine with Sio Bibble and her handmaidens. He asked her about news from Coruscant.

    "Governor, I worry that the Chancellor has taken too much power from the Senate. In the time I spent there, I heard some members grumbling that he has intruded into their systems' internal affairs," Amidala told him.

    Sio Bibble rubbed his chin and thought for a moment. "Perhaps it is merely those who are jealous of his rise. After all, Naboo is a relatively small planetary system."

    "Perhaps..." she conceeded, then moved on to speak of the slavery issue.

    The governor listened, watching her intently. When she finished, he remarked, "How will this affect us, Your Majesty?"

    "I am uncertain, Governor, yet I fear that the unrest in the Senate may prove its undoing. Even all those years ago, when the Trade Federation threatened us, I never sensed such dissension among its members. Now it seems no one can agree on anything." *And Palpatine sits above them, seemingly enjoying their arguments.*

    "Would the Jedi consider stepping in to settle their disputes?"

    "Governor, you know their policy. They will *not* become involved in unless there is no other way."

    He agreed, then silence descended over the dining table until the meal ended. Amidala bid him good night, then she and her handmaidens retired.

    As her friends divested her of the royal regalia and makeup, Amidala turned over in her mind the ramifications of latest visits to Coruscant. Seeing Palpatine from both the Padme and the Amidala personas had given her a better idea of his true character. And it worried her immensely.

    What also struck her odd was his seeming approval of her relationship with Anakin. As she had prepared to return to Naboo, he had visited her. The memory of his visit made her shudder.

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

    "Your Majesty, I wished to speak to you briefly before you depart."

    "Yes, Chancellor?"

    "I merely wished to give you assurances that I will do all in my power to support your marriage to young Skywalker," he told her, a bland smile in place.

    "Chancellor?" she managed, wondering how he had discovered Anakin's proposal.

    "Not to worry, Your Majesty. I am certain the Council will approve his request. The alliance between the Jedi and Naboo would benefit them greatly," he said smoothly, then turned to speak of the slavery issue. "Most promising, Your Majesty. It seems Nal Hutta has agreed to join the Senate and discontinue to practice on a least five of the systems they control, including Tattooine."

    "That *is* good news, Chancellor," she replied. If only this had happened before Anakin had left...before someone had killed his mother. "With that, I will take my leave, Your Majesty. Have a safe and quiet journey home and give my best to Sio Bibble." He bowed, then left in a swirl of blue robes.

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

    The whole scene continued to disturb her. Anakin had told her he planned to ask the Council for permission to marry and through their bond he'd told her they'd said they must wait. He'd left without saying goodbye since he and Obi-Wan had gone on another mission. What he hadn't told her was that the Chancellor knew of their relationship. And why would the Hutts join the Senate?

    She rubbed the bridge of her nose as a headache threatened, then shooed her handmaidens out to get their own rest. She lay on her bed, eyes staring at the darkened room.

    *Anakin... Where are you, love? Are you safe?*

    Faintly... *Am, I'm all right. What's wrong?*

    *I miss you.*

    *Soon, love. Soon.*

    Then quiet. Amidala curled into a tight ball, still terribly worried about so many things, not the least this last mission he had joined his Master on. Something seemed off, yet she couldn't place her finger on exa
     
  11. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Anakin stood a few paces behind his master, listening to Obi-Wan negotiate with the Mandelorian leader. As far as Anakin was concerned, the Mandelorians were little better than pirates. Yet Obi-Wan insisted they must at least make the attempt for a peaceful solution.

    He'd heard Amidala's plea as they'd arrived on Mandalore, then during their wait for an audience he'd picked up her dreams. He shifted uncomfortably, unable to stem the tide of her passionate rememberances. Aware of his Master's brief curious glance, he pushed aside those pleasant thoughts for the business at hand.

    Yoda had told Obi-Wan the Mandelorians had begun assaulting nearby systems in an effort to expand their empire. He wished Obi-Wan to begin talks that would hopefully lead to them desisting from their predations into already populated worlds. From what Anakin had heard so far, they had little hope of success.

    "What can you offer us that we cannot take for ourselves?" The harsh voice of the leader echoed through the hall, filled with contempt for Obi-Wan's request to desist.

    "Only peace, General. I can only promise that...and promise that if you do not stop these aggressive acts, the entire Republic will be at war with your people."

    The leader gave a shout of laughter. "As if I care for your weakling forces. We are Mandelorian, a power to be reckoned with. If we do not attack Coruscant, why should the Republic care?"

    "Because the Republic is more than Coruscant. Every world has the right to live in freedom as it sees fit, not fear invasion and slavery at another's hands," Obi-Wan insisted.

    *There was that word again,* Anakin thought with an internal grimace. On the tail of that came a sharp spear of loss... *Mom...* He fought against the pain and concentrated on the General's reply.

    "Well, little Jedi, Mandelorians do not fear war... We welcome it. Go back and tell your Council and your Republic their threats mean nothing. Indeed, they can consider this a declaration of our intent to break that Republic."

    Obi-Wan gave a grim nod, then motioned for Anakin to follow him out of the palace. They walked through ranks of armored warriors, their visages covered with concealing helmets, their Force signatures oddly murky. Anakin suppressed a shudder at the nearly droid-like sameness of each soldier. Were they droids? But no, they lived and breathed, but something wasn't right.

    *Master, we need to get out of here quickly. I sense something very wrong in this place.*

    *I know, Anakin, I know. We must tell the Council and the Chancellor what we know and what the General said.*

    They hurried toward the ambassadorial ship, feeling as thought a thousand eyes glared at them in hostility. Not until Mandalore had shrunk to a tiny ball did Anakin breathe comfortably again.

    They sped back to Coruscant, then hurried toward the Council chambers.

    "Worrisome is this, Obi-Wan. What say you, Padawan? Sense this also, did you?" Yoda asked.

    Anakin, somewhat taken aback at the Master's question, tried to gather his thoughts. "Yes, Master Yoda. There was something...odd...about the whole situation. As if they wished to taunt us and force the Republic into acting. Their warriors...they seemed rather strange, too. I could sense they lived, but I also sensed a peculiar...sameness in their life forces."

    "Hmmm...could they be clones?" Mace Windu asked.

    A murmur rose among the Council members. Ki Ad-Mundi spoke up.

    "If this is so, then they must have had assistance from elsewhere. From what we know, the Mandelorians have the reputation as a warrior society with tendencies toward aggressive acquisition. Nothing we do know of them suggests they have the technology to clone."

    "Unless they have made a pact with another race that does," Adi Gallia proposed. "Perhaps this ally has negotiated some sort of treaty that allows them immunity from Mandelorian predation in exchange for cloning technology that provides Mandalore with a replaceable army."

    A terrible silence descended over the chamber as those present contemplated the ramifi
     
  12. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Anakin found Naboo in all its rich spring bloom intensely stimulating. Amidala and her handmaidens greeted the Jedi delegation in the palace hangar and Anakin couldn't help wondering if she felt safer surrounded by others. He took in her face hungrily, wishing he could speed the wedding.

    "Your Majesty," Obi-Wan greeted her, bowing over her hand.

    "Knight Kenobi," she replied, then turned to the others. "Master Gallia, Padawan Skywalker, welcome to Naboo. My handmaidens will show you to your quarters."

    "Our thanks, Queen Amidala," Master Gallia replied, then joined the handmaidens as they returned to the palace.

    Amidala moved closer, detaining Obi-Wan for a moment to make a request. " I wish to speak with Ani alone, Obi-wan. We will be along shortly."

    Obi-Wan quirked an eyebrow at Anakin. *Behave yourself, Anakin. You'll be married soon enough.*

    He turned to follow the others only to find that Sabe had remained behind, waiting for him.

    "Sabe?"

    "It would be my pleasure to escort you to your quarters, Knight Kenobi," she murmured with a sidelong glance.

    Anakin watched his Master leave with Sabe on his arm and wondered if Obi-Wan felt as affected by the strong emanations of growing, multiplying, living things as he did. When Amidala touched his arm, he nearly jumped from his skin.

    "Sorry, Am. Guess I'm just a bit skittish right now. Something very strange happened on our last mission." He gave her a lopsided smile. *And being this close to you isn't helping.*

    "Tell me about it, Ani," she encouraged him as she threaded her arm through his to walk along the cliffside path behind the hangar.

    He told her of the Mandelorian problem and the possible ramifications of war with them. Upon reaching the part about his strange experience with the Chancellor, he hesitated.

    "Ani, what is it?"

    "Am, I...I think you might be right about the Chancellor. There's something odd..." He shook his head. "I don't want to think about it. He's given his blessing and support to our marriage. We shouldn't question his motives."

    She gave him an appraising look, then her shoulders slumped. "I suppose you're right. Sometimes I'm so tired of these problems...these worries. I just wish I had someone to help me make the right decisions." With a wave of her hand, she forestalled his answer. "Oh, I know I have Sio Bibble and the others to advise me. But I'm *still* the one has to make the final call."

    Anakin stopped her, taking her her shoulders to make her look into his eyes.

    "I'm here... You know I'll help you. Whatever you need, I'll try to give it to you," he promised.

    "Ani..." she murmured, her love for him shining from her eyes. Her knight, her friend...her lover.

    He pulled her into his arms, savoring the feel of her closeness, the pulsing heartbeat of Naboo matching his own.

    "Don't make me wait, Am. Marry me soon. I want the galaxy to know you're mine...I want to be with you again...forever." With a swift move, he lifted her higher until she came eye level with him. The motion slid her against his body. She had no doubt of his words or that she felt the same.

    Memories of the heated embrace in the Jedi garden replayed in her mind.

    *Yes, Am... Like that.*

    He carried her away from prying eyes to a secluded alcove along the path. There he found the architects had provided a bench for walkers to pause and enjoy the view of the Naboo plain. *Convenient,* he thought with a wry smile.

    With her still in his arms, he sat, pulling her legs to either side of his hips. He thanked whatever had prompted her to wear a simple dress instead of one of her more complex regalia. The moist Naboo air swirled around them as they kissed and caressed each other into breathlessness.

    Amidala broke away first, gasping for air. "Ani, we can't...not here."

    He paused, then dropped his head to her shoulder. "I know... Sorry..."

    "Stop apologizing, Anakin Skywalker. I want you terribly, too. But we must wait until after the wedding."

    *It's not like we haven't... Force, Am, I want you again!*

    "Oh, Ani, I
     
  13. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    The whole scene brought back memories of the first time he'd visited Naboo. Except this time he approached the palace beside Obi-Wan as Amidala awaited near the top of the palace stairs. Amidala's parents flanked her, as well as her handmaidens, the palace guards and her advisors. As much as he wanted this, he couldn't help feeling the cold sweat break out over his face and palms. He quelled the need to wipe his hands on his dark pants and his face on his best tunic's sleeve and commanded his stomach to stop alternately knotting and fluttering.

    All around them, the people of Naboo, including the Gungans, cheered and threw flower petals until the ground in the square appeared carpeted with many colors. Anakin finally got the courage to meet Amidala's eyes. Force, she absolutely glowed! She had chosen the same exquisite gown she'd worn the day she presented the peace globe to Boss Nass so many years ago, but she had added a fine transparent veil to it.

    Anakin's gaze flicked nervously to either side of his bride, fearing if he continued to stare at her he would lose his nerve completely. Sio Bibble, barely able to walk any more, stood with the aid of two of the handmaidens on the stair above Amidala. The completely white haired former governor would perform the civil portion of the wedding ceremony. Master Gallia had agreed to give the Jedi blessing to the union and had placed herself to Bibble's right.

    Somehow, Anakin managed to make his way up the steps without tripping and took Amidala's outstretched hand. They faced each other for a moment before turning to Sio Bibble. The crowd hushed as they waited for him to speak. Despite his frail appearance, the old man's voice rang out through the square as he spoke the words to seal the marriage of Anakin Skywalker and Padme Amidala Naberrie. Master Gallia nodded to him once he finished and moved to stand before the couple.

    "Padawan Skywalker, the Jedi Council has given me the duty of giving their blessing to this union. Though these are troubled times, we bestow upon you a leave of absence for a period of three months. Knight Kenobi and I will travel to Alderaan from here. Always be mindful, Padawan, of the Force and all those connected through it." The Jedi Master turned to Amidala. "Your Majesty...Queen Amidala...the Jedi welcome you to the company of our own. Your spirited courage and fair rule of Naboo have brought honor to both your home and the Republic."

    She bestowed a kind smile on them both, then held out her hands for theirs. Anakin and Amidala placed their free hands in hers.

    *Be strong, young ones. Great travails await us in the future. Together you can face them. Let the Force guide you in your actions and thoughts.*

    "The Jedi Council, the Republic, and the People of Naboo hereby recognize the lawful marriage of Queen Amidala to Anakin Skywalker, Jedi Padawan. May the Force be with you both as well as your children." She gave a squeeze to their hands, then released them and dipped her head to Anakin. "You may kiss your bride, Anakin."

    His hand trembled slightly as he lifted the fragile veil from Amidala's face, then he pulled her closer and bent near to give her a gentle kiss. Her eyes shone as she studied his face for a moment.

    "I love you, Ani... Always."

    "And I you, Am. No matter what."

    "Now we must give our people our attention," she reminded him, as she turned to the waiting crowd. "People of Naboo, I hereby declare this day a holiday!"

    Once again the mass of Naboo and Gungans cheered wildly, bringing a grin to the newly weds' faces. They raised their joined hands, then waved with their free ones. Then, the officials parted to allow the couple to enter the palace, Obi-Wan, Adi Gallia and the handmaidens following.

    Once inside, Amidala linked her arm through Anakin's and leaned closer to him. "I must go to my quarters with my handmaidens and let them ready me. Obi-Wan has said he will help keep you occupied until then."

    "I can wait. I've waited ten years...what's an hour or so more?" he replied with a dry mouth. Thoug
     
  14. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Last part until I get some more up. Working on an Obi-Wan/Sabe scene just before Obi leaves for Alderaan. Warning...this is hot stuff here.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Ani felt in the sleeve of his tunic for the present he'd managed to grab from his Jedi robes before he left Obi-Wan's room. At first he feared he'd lost it somehow, but then he relaxed at the reassuring weight against his hand.

    "Give me your arm for a moment, Am." She extended her right arm toward him and he grasped her hand between his. Before he placed his present on her wrist, he studied her hand as if he had never seen it before. He turned it over slowly, memorizing the shape of her fingers, the fine bones and veins beneath the skin, the neat, well-kept nails, the lines on her palm.

    "Are you going to read my palm, Ani?" she asked with a half-laugh.

    "No," he said, then brought her hand to his lips. He pressed kisses on the palm, then lay it against his face, savoring the feel of her skin against his for a moment. With a deep breath, he inhaled her scent, closing his eyes to contemplate the fact his angel had really married him.

    "Ani?"

    "I love you so, Am. Can't believe this is real...that you're real," he admitted as he held her hand tightly.

    Amidala scooted closer until she leaned against his side and rested her head on his shoulder. "I'm real, Ani. And I'll always be here for you."

    "I...I have something for you," he managed, then drew the bracelet out and shook it free of knots. Taking care not to drop it, he encircled her wrist with it and latched the clasp.

    "Oh, Ani! It's lovely," she exclaimed, holding her hand in the firelight to catch the light.
    Entwined in a fine net of gold, beads of Naboo amber and Tatooine *japoor* nestled together to catch the flame's fire.

    "Something from both our worlds, Am. To symbolize us..."

    She hugged him, pressing a kiss on his neck and then his face. He turned his head and met her lips with his own. *How soft...how sweet,* he thought as he tasted her mouth, then all rational thought left as she ran her hand up his chest.

    His own hands found the indentation of her waist and slid up to cup her breasts. No fire burned so brightly as the one that grew between them. They moved from the couch to the thick, soft rug before the fireplace. No longer tentative, they explored each other's bodies with wonder and growing excitement.

    And when neither felt they could take the tension any longer, Ani put them both out of their misery, completely joining them...body, soul and mind until neither truly knew where one began and the other ended. Melded in such a way, no words were necessary.

    *Ani, love, I will always be yours. Never leave me.*

    *I won't, Am. No matter how far this body is from you, I'll always be with you.*

    Then coherent thought faded away in physical sensation until they both cried out in completion. Ani collapsed beside her, tucking her against his side as he tried to regain his breathing. She lay trembling in his arms and he feared he might have hurt her.

    "No, Ani. I'm not that fragile. It's just..." She paused and looked up at him, her eyes heavy-lidded and sated. "What we shared this time seemed almost..."

    "Too intense?"

    "Perhaps it's just because we've waited so long." She gave a sleepy smile and snuggled closer, one leg thrown over his, her breasts pressed against his side.

    "Am..." he managed.

    She giggled as she felt him stir against her leg. "Again?"

    He groaned. "I'm sorry, Am."

    With a playful swat, she retorted, "Don't you apologize for wanting me, Anakin Skywalker! I'm your wife... Besides," she purrred. "I feel exactly the same."

    "Three months may not be enough," he said with a moan as she proceeded to do sweet torture to him.

    "Indeed," she agreed with a mischevious grin, then returned to her task.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Until the next time....
     
  15. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Welcome, Anakin's Angel! I got on a roll last night and didn't see your post. Hope the others follow me here. Trying to work on the next part this morning. Thanks to everyone who's evinced interest in my version of what's going to happen next.
     
  16. Cindé of Naboo

    Cindé of Naboo Jedi Padawan star 4

    Registered:
    Apr 19, 2000
    I'm glad to see you're still writing, BelleBayard! I didn't want to be responsible for stifling anyone's creative impulses. :) Keep at it!
     
  17. Anakin's Angel

    Anakin's Angel Jedi Padawan star 4

    Registered:
    May 3, 2000

    Hmm, now that you're caught up, do we get MORE?!

    aa :D
     
  18. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Of course! Will get something up this evening.
     
  19. Anakin's Angel

    Anakin's Angel Jedi Padawan star 4

    Registered:
    May 3, 2000
  20. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Sorry folks, RL got in the way. Got a terrible headache this morning and a *groan* meeting at work this morning. When I get back, if the pain is better (or even if it's not) I'm gonna work on that scene so I can get it posted. Ugh! And I have to work tonight and tomorrow night. Yuck! Till later, my friends.
     
  21. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Okay, here it is. Get your hankies out, folks.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    They had fallen asleep before the fire, a light cover from the couch pulled over them. Sabé had come with a meal and found them that way. She tiptoed out after leaving the tray on the table and closed the door as quietly as she could.

    "Make certain no one disturbs them, Corporal," she warned the guard outside the door.

    She turned away, an ache in her heart warring with the gladness she felt that her friend and ruler had found love. *Obi-Wan, why did you have to be so...so difficult?* He'd been glad to see her, but he refused to do more than kiss her and hold her hand. Sabé brushed away her tears, realizing she most likely would die an old maid, unloved and untouched.

    "Sabé?"

    "Obi-Wan...you startled me."

    "Why so sad?"

    She shook her head. "Not really. It seems Amidala and Anakin are so...right...so perfect together." *And I will never have anyone...especially not you.*

    " Sabé...I can't... I'm a Jedi knight. Ani's case is special... always has been. You remember all that's happened."

    "I know, I know, but that doesn't change the way I feel, Obi-Wan Kenobi," she muttered, then turned toward the handmaidens' quarters.

    "Wait..." he protested, catching up with as she hurried away.

    "Why?" she bit out, refusing to slow her pace.

    "Because you need to understand why I can't do this. Really understand." He pulled her into one of the small alcove rooms off the main hallway and pressed her into the window seat. Outside, the Naboo moonlight shone silvery over the plain below. Sabé gazed out at it without seeing the beauty, her vision veiled in the knowledge of the lonely years ahead of her.

    His warm hand curled around hers, forcing her back from the bleak landscape. Before she could pull away, Obi-Wan pulled her into his embrace. He held her gently, lovingly, making the hurt even worse with his kindness.

    "I must concentrate on finishing Anakin's training. If I allow myself the distraction of your sweet love, I won't be able to give him what he needs...a strong Master who will always be there for him."

    "But he has Amidala! What would be so bad about us being together? I know you can't make a commitment to me...I couldn't make one to you, either. I'm a handmaiden, the Queen's decoy...I have to be here for her." She took a shuddering breath, then pressed him closer. "Why can't you give me just a little of yourself? Something I can treasure for the rest of my life?"

    He buried his face against her neck, not saying a word for a moment. She could have sworn she felt his lips against her skin before he pulled away. An awful emptiness flooded her as he withdrew himself.

    "Not now, Sabé, not now. I have to go soon. The Council needs Master Gallia and me to go to Alderaan. There's a threat to the entire Republic that we can't ignore. I can only pray Anakin and the Queen's honeymoon isn't affected."

    She could only stand there, mute, in the face of his logic. Her heart ached, but somehow she managed to stem the tears that pressed against her eyes. When he reached for her hand, she allowed him to hold it for a moment and press his lips to her fingers before he left.

    "Farewell, my love. Take care," she whispered to his departing back. Then she made her way to her bed, feeling the loss of his presence more acutely than ever.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I'll try to get more up on Saturday, but I have to work over the next couple of nights. Until then...pleasant dreams.
     
  22. Darth Padme

    Darth Padme Jedi Youngling star 2

    Registered:
    Oct 22, 1999
    Poor Sabe! Obi-Wan was always too rational! So sad. I guess that's why tragic couples are so intriging though-all the what-ifs. Great post! Looking foward to Saturday! :)
     
  23. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Three months flew by and soon the Naboo summer peaked with hot, humid days and nights alike. Anakin felt bad for his wife, as he sweltered enough in his robes during the nearly daily hearings. He had never appreciated how hard Amidala worked until he spent his days with her. Silently, he made a vow he would spend as much time as possible helping her.

    At the end of his last day on vacation, he dismissed the handmaidens and helped Amidala undress from her regalia. First, he removed the heavy headpiece, intertwined with her own soft hair. He brushed out the knots and marveled at the crinkled waves, running his fingers through it and bringing it to his face to inhale her unique scent.

    "Ani, we'll never get me out of this if you keep that up," she murmured.

    He looked up and met her smiling eyes in the mirror. "Sorry, Am... Couldn't help myself."

    She reached back to put her hand over his. "I can't object to that, Ani. Just let me up so you can undo the back of my dress."

    With a final touch of her hair, he stood back and let her rise. She walked around the low chair, then turned around to face away, lifting her hair to allow him access to the numerous buttons at the back of her dress. Despite all the intimate times they had shared, Ani's fingers trembled as he worked at the tiny openings. He finally finished, feeling clumsy and inept.

    "Help me out of it, Ani. I can't hold it up by myself," she said, then turned to face him.

    He shrugged off his insecurity and grasped the heavy dress. Amidala shrugged off the shoulders, then stepped back, out of her outfit.

    "It goes over there, on that stand." She pointed to appropriate place and he took it over to hang it over the wooden contraption. He fussed with it for a bit, certain the handmaidens would think him totally incompetent at such a simple task.

    "It's fine, Ani. Come sit beside me while I take off my makeup." She patted the seat she sat on. He watched her spread a thin layer of white compound over her face, then wipe away the thick coating of white and red. "Hand me the washcloth, please," she asked, here eyes closed.

    "Let me, Am." Gently, he took the warm, wet cloth and removed the last vestiges of role as Queen of Naboo.

    "Mmmm...that feels wonderful. You have such a nice touch, love."

    "Let me give you a massage, Am. After all day in that get up, I'm sure you're all tight."

    She opened her eyes and grinned at him. "Why, Anakin Skywalker, if I didn't know better, I'd say you were propositioning me."

    "Aw, Am...I just want to do something nice for you," he protested.

    Amidala leaned forward to kiss him, then whispered in his ear. "I know, dear. Don't be silly. I'd *love* a good massage." She rose and held her hand out to him. "Let's go to bed. It's late and we can sleep in tomorrow."

    He followed her into the bedroom. As he undressed and donned his night robe, she shed her own and lay face down on the bed. Anakin went to the dresser and picked her favorite oil, then knelt beside her on mattress. He poured a small amount in his palm, then rubbed it between his hands to warm it.

    Her skin felt soft and smooth beneath his touch and she responded to his ministrations with little sounds that nearly drove him mad. How could he bear to leave her? Yet he knew Obi-Wan and Adi Gallia would return tomorrow. And he had promised to return to the Temple. The Republic would need every Jedi, Master, Knight and Padawan alike, to fight the new threat.

    Reluctantly, he ended his massage, running his fingers down Amidala's spine, then bracketing her hips. He discarded his robe and lay beside her. She opened heavy eyes and studied him with a smouldering look.

    "Will you follow up on that promise?"

    "What promise?" he asked, not certain what she spoke of.

    "To come back..."

    "Am, I don't want to leave. But you know the Temple needs everyone."

    "You don't have to tell me about obligations, Ani. I have enough of my own to understand." She grimaced, then continued. "I just want you to remember that I'm here. That
     
  24. RebelMom

    RebelMom Jedi Knight star 6

    Registered:
    Apr 20, 2000
    Hope you are feeling better. Just caught up and am ready for more.
     
  25. BelleBayard

    BelleBayard TFN Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 4 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 16, 2000
    Anakin's heart sank at the grim expressions on Obi-Wan and Master Gallia's faces. The news must be bad for them to look so...so...tense, for lack of a better word. They had greeted the Queen and him with appropriate gladness, then asked to speak to Anakin alone. Once they were certain of privacy, Master Gallia told him of their findings.

    "I am sorry to tell you, Padawan Skywalker, but you must come back to Coruscant with us. Three Core Worlds have fallen to the Mandelorians since we last stood here." The beautiful Jedi master took a deep breath, a look of profound sorrow in her dark eyes. "Make your farewells to your wife for we must leave immediately."

    "Master?"

    "Master Gallia is correct, Anakin. Things have progressed to a point of outright war. Several systems have agreed to form their armies against the Mandelorians. Bail Organa of Alderaan leads one and has asked for you and I to work with them." Obi-Wan gave Anakin a rueful half-smile. "Not the way I would have wished to end your honeymoon, but there is little time left if we are to successfully defeat these predators."

    "How long?" Anakin manged, a cold pit forming in his chest. All the promises he'd made to Amidala might come to nothing in the face of this situation.

    "We depart this evening. Chancellor Palpatine expects our report in person within three days. Even on scrambled lines, there is evidence of a leak. No longer can we send messages regarding our plans or troop movements," Adi Gallia told him. "This, sadly, means any communication with others must be in some other code if sent subspace."

    "We leave at twenty-one hundred hours tonight, Anakin," Obi-Wan continued. "Master Gallia and I will get something to eat and a few hours of rest. Meet us at the shuttle in the hangar."

    Anakin dipped his head in acknowledgement, then hurried toward the handmaidens' receiving room, where Amidala waited for him. He found the young women surrounding her, discussing speculations of what the Jedi delegation had come to report. For a moment he stood in the doorway, his hands clenched at his sides as he watched them, like butterflies lighting on the sweet flower that was his wife.

    "Your Majesty...a moment, please," he broke in.

    The room grew silent. Amidala took in the look on his face and shooed the others away. She stood and joined him, linking her arm through his and moving toward their quarters.

    "What is it, Ani? From your face, it must be bad."

    "The Mandelorians have moved against three other worlds and continue toward Coruscant. Obi Wan and Master Gallia have come to take me back to the Temple. Then my Master and I will return to Alderaan. We're fighting beside Bail Organa."

    Amidala drew in a sharp breath. "So it *is* war, then."

    "Yes, Am. I don't know how long I'll be gone." *Or if I'll come back...despite my promises.*

    They continued on in silence and once they reached their room, she shut the door behind them. He sensed her pain and fear and wished he could give her soothing words, but none came, his own feelings echoing hers.

    "When must you leave?"

    "Tonight. I'm to meet them in the hangar bay at twenty-one hundred hours. We have to be back on Coruscant by the end of the week to report the Council and Chancellor Palpatine."

    He didn't mention the communication problem, not wanting to worry her further. He needn't have worried, for she flung herself into his arms, holding him as though she would never release him.

    "Then we don't have much time, love," she said, tears in her voice. "Give me another memory to hold close before you go."

    "Am, no matter what, I'll be close." He shut his eyes, reaching out for her with his mind. *I'll always be with you, this way. It doesn't matter how far away I am, we'll have this.*

    She nestled against him, her voice so low he had to strain to make out the words. "I know, but that doesn't make this any easier."

    Without another word, he tightened his embrace for a moment, then scooped her into his arms and carried her toward their bed. Once there, he procee
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.