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Beyond - Legends Dawning (2.0) - Luke/Mara, Ben - AU repost & revamp - Completed August 12th

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Briannakin , May 22, 2013.

  1. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Title: Dawning
    Author: Briannakin
    Timeframe: 44 ABY
    Characters: Luke, Mara, Ben, Han, Leia, Jaina and the rest of the gang with a few OC's
    Genre: AU, Hurt/Comfort, Romance, Angst
    Notes: Because of the truncation issue, many people have been bugging me for this fic, so I decided to revamp it. I’ve changed some stuff as FOTJ is now over to fit. If you read it before, I’ve changed it enough so it’s worth another read.


    Prologue


    Luke Skywalker, Grand Master of the Jedi Order swept high with his green blade. Abeloth – his opponent – slashed at him with her tentacles, pushing Luke back towards the edge of the cliff.

    “You will die,” the… thing grunted, beginning a series of short, quick blows, making the Grand Master retreat further. The suns beat down on his black robed back, making him sweat more. He was not afraid to die. He had nothing to live for now, which made him a formidable opponent.

    Ben was dead.

    Abeloth had killed him in cold blood.

    “As long as you come with me, I don’t care.” He couldn't believe he was wasting his breath speaking to her. He edge closer to the precipice. His heels were hanging off now.

    “That is unacceptable.” With a tentacle, she sliced off his arm, she them moved to consume him.

    While she had been busy with his other arm, Luke had retrieved a thermal detonator from his pocket.

    As she absorbed him, he detonated the device.

    Everything went dark.

    * * *

    Luke woke from the darkness some time later. He wasn't sure how much time had passed: moments felt like days or days; like moments, Luke realized that it had all been a dream.

    Hadn't it?

    But Luke couldn't recall exactly what had been a dream. The past day? The past week? The past year?

    He could not open his eyes. He tried to move something. ANYTHING! But his body did not respond. He felt dizzy and like he was encased in something.

    Am I dead? Maybe it hadn't been a dream. Maybe life just seemed like a dream now that he was dead. It made sense to him.

    But Luke then realized that he was still breathing, but not on his own. Tubes had been forced down his airways and air was being pumped in and out. And there were incessant beeping noises.

    No, death couldn't be this uncomfortable. He wasn't in much pain, but his muscles and joints simply ached, a tremendous amount.

    He tried to reach out with the Force, but he was so tired, he just wanted to sleep.

    He tried to talk, to ask if anyone was there, but he gagged on the tubes.

    He then heard the most beautiful voice ever. The voice of an angel.

    “Farmboy?”

    Yup. He was dead.
     
    Ahsoka_Tano_11 likes this.
  2. Jedi_Lover

    Jedi_Lover Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 1, 2004
    Mara came for him! [:D]
     
  3. EmeraldJediFire

    EmeraldJediFire Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 23, 2012
    You re-wrote it. Cause I remember this beginning differently. I like it. Funny story. I was able to get the Dawning document on my KindleFire. I was just starting to re-read it last night. *grins*
     
  4. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Yeah, I'm on chapter one right now and I'm changing it a lot more than I even planned. Keep the original, you may want to look at it to compare.
     
  5. EmeraldJediFire

    EmeraldJediFire Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Only I will. I can see how you would need to. You have him confronting Abeloth so I'm not sure how much you're going to change from that dream..if its a dream. I guess I'll see.
     
  6. newdawn12

    newdawn12 Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 9, 2013
    enjoying it
     
  7. Demendora

    Demendora Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Apr 9, 2010
    Wheee! I am so happy to read it again.
     
  8. Lady_Misty

    Lady_Misty Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 21, 2007
    Left a review on ff.net. :)
     
  9. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Bri!!! Wow, I eagerly look forward to a reread. :) =D= I am just stoked you have time LOL for ff again. [:D]
     
  10. Hazel

    Hazel Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 9, 2010
    I love this story. ♥ Can't wait to see how you'll improve it.
     
  11. ginchy

    ginchy Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 25, 2005
    Neat to see that you're revising. And I'm missing reading older stories due to the truncation issue!! Can't wait to see what you have new for us.
     
    Lady_Misty likes this.
  12. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Hey guys. Thanks for reading (or re-reading). Just a short note. When I started this revamp a few days ago, my original intention was to fix up my writing, perhaps add and rearrange a few scenes, but not to do any major re-write or anything. Then I got into it and realized how much I love this story. Originally when I wrote this fic, I had several plans for it. At the time I picked the one I could execute the best. Now as I’m doing this revamp or whatever you want to call it, I’ve decided to do something else, so this won’t be the Dawning you read a few years ago (though I still have the original if you want it). Much of the stuff is staying the same, in fact I breezed through chapters 5 and 6 without changing a whole lot. But there are other chapters, like chapter 7, which I’m staring at, daunted, right now, that will need be completely redone, so encouragement and cheerleaders are smiled upon.

    Lastly, I’m not going to have any sort of update schedule for this (last night I got through 4 and a half chapters, but it might take me like a week to do chapter 7) so if you want tags or PMs, just ask.

    Chapter 1


    Mara Jade Skywalker sat beside her husband's bedside. Her sock-clad feet were up on the edge of the medcenter bed and a datapad was in her hands. She was half-heartedly doing some stupid report.

    Mara liked doing her work as co-Grand Master in Luke's medcenter room. It was quiet and far away from her other co-Grand master: Corran Horn. He wouldn't annoy her here, no one would. Coran was nice and a great Jedi to work with, but his Corellian personality made her want to drive her head through a wall sometimes, or better yet, drive his head through a wall. There were days when she wanted to castrate him, but then Mirax Horn, his wife, probably wouldn’t be too pleased with her if she did.

    Mara smirked at the thought.

    But doing her work in here also let her be with her husband for a few hours out of each day. The other Jedi worried about her. But he was still her husband and she still wanted to spend time with him, even if he wasn't really there. She knew what they all said behind her back: she was delusional, borderline crazy in her hopes that Luke would one day wake. Personally, she agreed with them. Deep down, she knew he would never come back to her. It had been four years after all; he wasn't coming back. He wasn't in a vegetative state because he dreamed, a lot and very vividly. Brain wave monitors showed his brain activity. Apparently, he was all there, he just couldn't wake up.

    Luke lay there, like he had for the past one-thousand-four-hundred-and-some-odd days, on his special form-air foam bed to prevent bed sores. He didn’t look like he was at piece. He looked like he was suffering. Tubes ran into and out of his mouth, nose and left hand, which was above the white blanket and resting on his stomach. His right arm was under the covers. His prosthetic hand had suffered too much damage in the battle and no one saw the point of re-attaching a new one. More tubes, along with metres of wires, flowed out from underneath the blankets and into machines or bags of fluid. He wore nothing but a pair of shorts, but no one but her and the healers knew this, since he was always covered up and no one else was allowed in here.

    Security was tight, to say the least.

    'Am I dead?'

    Luke's voice rang clear inside her head.

    She rubbed her eyes. It had been a long, hard day, it shouldn't be a surprise that she now was hearing voices. Great. She was so tired, her mind was talking to her in Luke’s voice.

    Mara took her feet off the bed, put on her boots and started packing up her things. She needed some rest.

    Then she heard gags, like someone was choking, or trying to talk with something in their mouth and throat.

    She watched in amazement as Luke's lips, neck and jaw twitched.

    “Farmboy?”

    She then shook her head and rubbed her eyes again as she stood. “Oh, Skywalker,” she said to both the body on the bed and herself. “I've finally lost my mind. Yup. After four long years without her husband, the great Mara Jade Skywalker has finally lost her mind,” she practically sang. She bent over and kissed his forehead. “The rest of the council is right,” she muttered, “Maybe I should stop coming around here every day. Maybe I should think about letting you go.” She picked up her bag and left.

    * * *

    Thoughts ran through Luke's head. Four years? Have I been dreaming for four years? Coma? Probably. That would put me in a coma just before Mara died. Wait, I was in a coma. That would mean she died in my dreams. That would mean Mara is alive. MARA YOU'RE ALIVE! He could feel his heart flutter as the thought hit him.

    Then he felt her breath on his face and her lips on his forehead. He could have created a star using the Force he was so happy. He just might, just for her.

    Then he heard her leaving, he had to stop her.

    'Mara! Stop! It's me, Luke, Skywalker, Farmboy, whatever you want to call me, just come back, please! I love you!' he sent to her through their Force bond.

    He then realized that he needed to do something else to make her realize that she wasn't just imagining things. He was too weak to do much with the Force, plus he still couldn't open his eyes to see what he had to work with.

    Just do something, Luke, damn it, just do SOMETHING and do it quick, she's leaving, he told himself.

    He tried to move his body, any part of his body would work, but it would not respond. Nothing would respond.
    * * *

    Mara turned around just before activating the door controls to look at Luke once again. If she only focused on his closed eyes and on his sandy hair, he looked as if he was only asleep. She could almost imagine him rolling over, opening those big blue eyes of his and asking her why she wasn't in bed with him.

    Yet she couldn't do it. She couldn't imagine him waking up.

    Yes, maybe it was time to give up hope. Luke wasn’t going to wake.

    * * *

    She was gone.

    Luke was stunned. He had apparently woken after four years in a coma and she had left him and he could do nothing to get her back. He had to think of something. But sleep was closing in on him and he could do nothing to stop it.

    * * *

    With a sigh, Mara flopped onto her bed with the flimsiplast copy of Luke’s last will and testament. She had gone over this damned document with a fine tooth comb many times, once with Nawara Ven – Luke’s lawyer – Leia, Han and Ben all present, trying to figure what Luke would have wanted. In the end, the document was clear – it was all up to Mara and Ben on what to do.

    Mara knew her son had given up hope long ago that his father would ever wake. He had wanted to ‘pull the plug’ six months into this hell.

    Composing herself, she went to the comm-station in her apartment and selected Ben from the list. A new planet – Kesh – had been found a year ago. Ben and a couple of other young Jedi knights were there helping the locals – the Keshi - become a part of the galactic system.

    Ben’s image in blue appeared. He had grown into a handsome man – taking most of his looks from his father, with just a hint of her and his grandfather in his face, and height. “Hey Mom,” he greeted her with a smile. “Are you comm-ing me as my mom or as the Grand Master?”

    “As your mother. We have to talk about your father.”

    A look of surprize, then concern crossed his face. “Is everything alright? He doesn’t have an infection, does he?”

    “No, nothing has changed. That’s why I’ve called you. I think I might be ready to let him be at peace.”

    “Why now, Mom?” Mara knew Ben was both worried and curious.

    “I know he’s not coming back. I was going crazy thinking he was. It’s better for all of us if we let him go. I’ll be forced to move on and I want to know that he is in the neitherworld.” No one knew if Luke had gotten to the neitherworld with his body still tied to life. Mara believed that he hadn’t and that fact had been killing the rational part of her. Maybe if he was allowed to finally cross over, she would be able to get a final goodbye.

    “Alright, so it’s not just for me?”

    “No, it’s not.”

    “Okay. Do you want me to come back early?”

    “No,” she replied. “You’re only gone for another month. I need that month to prepare.”

    “Alright. Have you told Aunt Leia yet?”

    “No, and I’m not looking forward to it,” she groaned.

    “You have fun with that,” he replied sarcastically.

    “Thanks, ungrateful offspring,” she replied sarcastically.

    * * *

    Luke slowly woke again. He quickly remembered where he was and what had happened. What had happened? His mind was so foggy that he couldn’t figure out when exactly he had gone into a coma. All he knew was Mara was alive.

    And if Mara was alive, that meant Ben was probably alive.

    Ben had to be alive.

    Ben’s death had destroyed him in his dream. He had to be alive and well now. Luke had to see his son again. Emotion overwhelmed Luke and he began to cry.

    He felt his tears running down his face. His body tried to sob, but couldn’t, which made his body panic and start to choke. His body wanted to breathe on its own, yet the tubes wouldn’t let it. All he wanted to do was yank everything out of him and go run to Mara and Ben. Yet he couldn’t move a finger. He wanted to scream in frustration.

    Alarms started to scream. He heard footsteps running. At least someone was coming.

    * * *

    Mara grunted as her comm-link went off just as she was falling asleep. “Coran is supposed to be the Grand Master on-call in the AM hours,” she grumbled before picking it up. “Master Jade Skywalker.”

    “Mara?” She recognized the low yet feminine voice of Cilghal. “Something is wrong with Luke. You are going to want to get down here.”
     
    SHADOW_MASTER_W likes this.
  13. Jedi_Lover

    Jedi_Lover Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 1, 2004
    Poor Luke. I remember this story now. It has been a while since I read it. I look forward to seeing how you changed it.
     
  14. EmeraldJediFire

    EmeraldJediFire Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 23, 2012
    I like the change. Look forward to more, Bri.
     
  15. Hazel

    Hazel Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 9, 2010
    I see a lot of changes in this chapter. Poor Luke and Mara!
     
  16. Demendora

    Demendora Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Apr 9, 2010
    I like how you changed this chapter, and I am looking forward to see how you change the rest.
     
  17. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Excellent pacing and writing. =D= Liked the changes and Mara's feelings, new decision, and talk with Ben. Now, though, everything's changed for their family and she'll have different news to break to Leia and the rest.
     
    Jedi_Lover and Demendora like this.
  18. ginchy

    ginchy Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 25, 2005
    The part about Luke sobbing makes ginchy sob. :_|
     
    Demendora and Jade_eyes like this.
  19. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    AN: Thanks everyone for reading.

    Chapter 2

    Mara hurried down the med-center hallway. Something was wrong with Luke. Cilghal, who was thankfully the healer on-call tonight, had no idea what. She wanted Mara to come see him to find out if she could use her bond with Luke to help them. Thing was, Mara had closed down their bond years ago. It had been like a comm line – alive on her end but all she received from Luke was a busy signal. It had disturbed her greatly, so she had simply ‘hung up’.

    She entered the room to see Cilghal holding a scanner to Luke chest. “Mara, I’m sorry. We know the machines would only sustain him for so long. I think this might be it.”

    Mara paid no attention to the healer. She was staring at the lines of tears running down his cheeks. “He’s been crying.”

    “That’s why I wanted you down here.” Luke’s case had been classified by Cilghal and all other medical professionals as unique, which. Cilghal was frank. “I have no idea what is going on.”

    Mara nodded. “Luke used to talk in his sleep. Could this crying be like that?”

    “It’s possible. I’ve also heard of read of a case in a medical journal of a man who was in a 26 year-long coma. He went from a state of total unconsciousness to a state of semi-consciousness for a few hours before dying. It is still unknown why.”

    Mara gulped. She thought she was ready for this, but she wasn’t. “Okay. I’m going to try to reach him… to see what state he’s in.” She reached for one hand, holding it tight. She brushed her fingertips though his hair. Taking a deep breath, she lifted her shields.

    * * *

    Luke had been vaguely aware of someone coming into the room. He didn’t care. All he wanted was Mara or Ben. Then, a few minutes later, he had realized that she was near and felt someone gingerly taking his hand.

    He felt their bond open.

    ‘Mara.’

    “Luke? Luke? Can you hear me?”

    His condition must have been pretty serious if she was calling him 'Luke'.

    ‘Yes, my love.’

    There was... laughing? Crying? Both?

    He certainly felt like doing both.

    “Oh, Luke.” It was definitely a mixture of both. He felt her weight as she sat on the edge of the bed. He felt the warmth of her hand in his and felt her kisses on his forehead and on his unshaven, stubbly cheeks. And he felt her tears, or were tears more of those his?

    'Oh, Mara. Oh, my Mara, my love.'

    “Mara? What is going on?” Luke heard the healer. She clearly confused with Mara's uncharacteristic hysteria.

    “Luke is awake!”

    “Are you sure?”

    “Yes, he’s talking to me through our bond. And look at his brainwaves.”

    “Well. I’ll be. Luke can you move anything?”

    ‘No, but I think I can breathe on my own.’ He tried, which caused him to start choking again.

    “Luke, stop, please,” she gently rebuked him. “He can’t move, but he thinks he can breathe.”

    “Okay, Luke. I’ll take you off the ventilator, but it will be extremely uncomfortable while it's coming out, so I need you to stay calm. When it is out, you need to try to take slow, deep breaths.”

    He felt the tube starting to move and he felt like he was choking. He involuntary gagged and tried to breathe. His body panicked.

    “Calm down, Luke,” Mara said in a gentle, but firm tone. She squeezed his hand again and held the top of his head with her other hand. “It's almost out.”

    His throat seemed to listen to her just as the tube was pulled out. It took him a few tense seconds to remember how to expand his diaphragm, but he eventually did and that started the involuntary process of breathing calmly and slowly, even if it wasn't as deep as he would have liked.

    He was exhausted from the short struggle, but he needed to say something.

    * * *

    “Mara.” The word was more like a breath made to sound like her name. It was so quiet, a whisper was louder.

    Mara smiled. It was such a relief to hear his voice. “Hush, Luke. Focus on breathing,” she chided.

    After a few moments, he decided to ignore her. “Water?” he breathed, almost inaudibly. She could tell that he was exhausted.

    “I told you to hush. Do I have to tell you to shut up already?” She looked at Cilghal to see if Luke was allowed to drink.

    “If you'll get a small cup of water and a cloth, Mara, I'll raise up the head of the bed.” The healer then looked at Mara's husband. “It'll help you, Luke, to drink and to breathe. You are going to stay in this position for the night, so tell me if it's uncomfortable or if you feel dizzy.” She pressed a button on the side of Luke's bed so he moved up to an angle.

    Mara walked over to the sink, grabbed a plastic cup and filled it with cool water. She grabbed a face cloth and walked back to Luke's bed. She tried handing the cup to Cilghal, but she would not take it.

    “You're going to be in here a lot more than I am; you might as well learn how to do it now, you insisted on knowing how to do everything else.”

    “Okay,” Mara said, nodding.

    “Just put the cloth under his chin to catch any that spills out, put the cup to his lips – I don't think you'll have to open his mouth for him – and pour a little bit into his mouth. Wait until he swallows,” Cilghal instructed her. “Then give him more if he wants it.”

    “Kay, Skywalker, you ready?”

    * * *

    “Yes,” Luke rasped. He felt the cloth underneath his chin, the cup being gently pressed to his lips. He made sure his lips were parted as water started to trickle past his dry lips, past his teeth and into his cracked, parched mouth. He swallowed. His throat was so dry, the action was painful, but the water soon soothed him. He also felt water trickle down onto his chin. The water was quickly wiped away.

    “Do you want more?”

    'Yes, please.' He felt more water being poured down his throat and he drank greedily.

    “That's enough for now, we don't want to overload your stomach, making you go into shock,” his wife said he heard her place the cup on the bedside table. “If you want more later, just ask.”

    “Luke,” Cilghal said. “I know you are probably tired – your mind and body are not used this level of stimulation, but I want to assess your mental state and memory for brain damage. Do you know where you are?”

    “A medcenter.” He paused to take a breath. “I'm assuming the one in the Jedi temple. That means I'm on Coruscant.”

    “Good job Luke. I’m confident you are mentally and cognitively with us. I won’t bother you with any IQ questions. But we need to see how much you remember. What is the last thing you remember?”

    Luke thought for a long moment. “I don’t know. I dreamed. I don’t know what was real or when the dream started.” He had to catch his breath after saying all that. “But I think I have an idea approximately.” If he had been in a coma for four years, Mara’s death was probably one of the first things that happened in his dream.

    “Mara, why don’t you go through the series of events that happened before... before he ended up here,” Cilghal suggested. “Stop when he can't remember any more.”

    Mara nodded. She knew why: Luke didn't need to know why he was here, not yet. She turned back to her husband. “Okay, Farmboy. Do you remember Ben running away? He was gone for his 14th birthday.”

    Events started flooding back to Luke as he tried to remember exactly when he would have gone into a coma.

    Ben. He needed to know Ben was alright. “Yes. And I remember him coming back. How is he? Where is he?”

    “Good. Ben is doing well. He's away on a mission, but we holo-comm him when you're feeling stronger. You're getting tired, I can feel it.”

    Luke was so relieved knowing his son was not only alive, but doing fine. He wanted his son at his side so much. Even though he wanted to spend more time with Mara, he felt sleepy.

    “That is to be expected,” he heard Cilghal reply. “Even though you're not doing much, your body isn't used to so much activity. Let's finish up the memory part of the tests and we will do a physical examination after you wake up again in the morning. Alright?”

    “Okay.” He felt exhausted now that he thought about it, but he didn't want to go back to sleep. He feared that this was the dream and if he went to sleep again, he would wake up and she wouldn't be there.

    “I'm not going to leave you tonight, there is no way to convince me otherwise. I’ll be right here when you decide to wake up again,” she sent to him. She had been reading his mind.

    “But, before I do that, tell me if you remember me telling you that...” she seemed to struggle with the next word, “...Jacen was a menace. It was during dinner just after Ben came back.”

    “Yes, but I thought for sure that was part of my dream because we went to bed that night and the next morning you were gone... you left to fight Jacen....”

    “No, Luke. We went to bed that night and....” He felt her shift her weight to face Cilghal. “He remembers up to the night before, but I'm pretty sure his dream filled in what happened onward from the time we went to bed. He's so confused.”

    Luke agreed with that statement.

    He heard Cilghal tuck her datapad away. “Fill him in on what you think he can handle right now, but also let him rest. I’ll be back in the morning. Call me if you need me.”

    “I will. But, Cilghal, don't tell anyone he's awake. I want Ben to see it for himself first.”

    “Alright, it's probably best if we don't tell everyone right away. I’ll see you two in the morning.” Luke heard the door slide open, then shut again.

    “Farmboy, I'm going to talk with you until you fall into sleep, okay? It'll make going back to sleep more bearable. Can you tell me what happened in your memories after we went to bed that night? It might be similar to what really happened. Tell me through our bond.” Luke felt her inch closer and run her fingers through his hair.

    'Thank you. That morning, I remember thinking that I slept heavily because you had left and I hadn't even noticed. I went out into the kitchen and saw a note from you. It said: 'Gone hunting. Be back in a few days. Don't be mad at me, Farmboy'. You died that same day. You had confronted Jacen and he had killed you. I thought I lost you. I grieved for four years, but now you're back.'

    “No, Luke. You're back.” He felt her lean to the side and heard a tissue being plucked from a dispenser. Was she crying? He didn't hear any sobs, but then again, Mara never let anyone know she was crying. After a moment, she continued.

    * * *

    Mara made sure she had tissues close at hand before telling Luke what really happened.

    “That night, after you fell asleep, I decided to leave and confront Jacen. As I was getting ready, you woke up. We talked for awhile, about Jacen. Then we argued about him and about him training Ben. I finally told you that I knew Jacen was going to hurt Ben and I was going to stop Jacen even if it killed me. As soon as those words came out of my mouth, something came over you and you pretty much collapsed on the bed. You said it was a feeling from the Force. One of tremendous sadness and grief, like if I went, something horrible would happen. You decided you would go to talk to him yourself because you didn’t want me to get hurt. You also convinced me that no one else should come. You wanted to go as Jacen’s uncle, not as the grand master. I let you go by yourself. Why did I do that?” she muttered, asking herself as she rubbed his hand with her thumb.

    'I'm glad you did.' He told her. She smiled. He would be glad that it was him in that bed instead of her there or worse.

    “I waited until I felt Jacen's death before I came to you. As I travelled through hyperspace to Kaven, I felt you slowly dying. When I finally got to you, I was amazed you were still alive.”

    Images of Luke's bloody and beaten body lying on top of her nephew in that sewer pipe still haunted her. His limbs had been at unnatural angles, bent in unnatural places, his entire right side of his chest had been crushed in and a poison dart had been implanted, not just stuck, into the back of Luke's neck. She had found out later that it had actually reached the base of his brain. Blood had matted his hair. And his face: Mara didn't want to remember the mess that his face had been in.

    Oddly enough, Jacen hadn't looked too bad, yet he was the one with the lightsaber hilt all the way through his heart.

    Yet he was the one dead and Luke had been the victor.

    “I got you on the Shadow and to Coruscant.” She then felt Luke slipping into sleep and was glad that she didn't have to continue. “I'll finish telling you what happened, later. Rest for now, my love,” she said as she made sure he was tucked in. She then placed a kiss on his lips as she felt him drift off.

    More images started to flood her mind. Those of Luke's body in a bacta tank. Those of him being pulled out, only to go in for surgery and more surgery, only to be placed in the bacta tank yet another time. And those of him lying lifeless for countless weeks, when she, and everyone else still had hopes of him waking up.

    Finally tears came. For the first time in nearly four years, Mara cried.

    She looked over to the lounger beside his bed. She had slept in it plenty of times over the past four years, but she knew no matter how tired she was, she was not going to be able to get much sleep tonight, so she decided to do him a small favour. Getting up quietly, she crossed the room to a cabinet and a sink. She got a basin of warm water, two towels, a facecloth and a shave kit. She knew how much Luke hated facial hair, plus he currently looked scruffy-looking; that would just not do for her. Mara also knew how irritating shaving scar tissue could be and he didn't need to be in pain on such a happy day for them both.

    Then, as she walked back to the bed, she realized that she hadn't asked Luke if he had been in pain; he never would have shown it. It would be one of the first questions she asked him when he woke up.

    She set the basin on the bedside table, gently lifted Luke's head, which was dead weight in her hand, and put one of the towels under his head. He snorted, then let out something that resembled a grunt, but he did not wake. She placed the other towel on his neck and chest. Mara then went to work slowly shaving his face. She had done it plenty of times before, Corran had shown her how to four years ago, but she was extra careful this time.

    When she was done, she cleaned him up and sat back in the lounger. She held his hand and went into a light sleep.

    * * *

    Luke slowly woke from his thankfully dreamless sleep to find his face no longer itched. She had shaved him. He tried to smile and was pretty sure he managed a weak one.

    “Hey, Farmboy. Good nap?”

    He would never tire of her touch or her voice.

    “Yeah. Thank you for the shave.” He felt her lips on his and did his best to return the affection.

    “What time is it?”

    “Oh-four-hundred. Do you need Cilghal?”

    “No, she probably needs her rest. You do too.”
    “I’m fine Skywalker. Are you in any pain? Do I need to get you anything?”

    ”No, the pain isn't bad. I'm mostly just sore. A massage and a glass of wine might be nice.”

    Mara gave a short laugh and patted his hand. “Maybe later.”

    “Well, if you’re not going to go back to sleep, can we call Ben? Is it early there? Where is he?”

    “He’s on Kesh. With the time difference, it'll be mid-morning there, so he’ll probably be up. I'll flag the call as urgent.” He then felt her get up and cross the room.

    “Kesh?”

    “A new planet. It was found about a year ago on the outer reaches of the outer-rim. He’s there with a couple of other young Jedi knights. They helping the locals – the Keshi - become a part of the galactic government.”

    Luke was relieved when she didn't mention any crazy Sith tribe.

    “Mara, who is the Chief of State? Please tell me it's not Natasi Daala.”

    “Daala? Why would it be that old croon?” she asked as he heard the holo-comm unit being rolled over to his bedside.

    “She was the Chief of State in my dream, or for most of it anyway.”

    Mara laughed as she typed in the key code. “Farmboy, that right there should have made you figure out that it was a dream. No, we now have a new system of government since the GA and the Imperial Remnant has joined together. The head is Emperor Jagged Fel, but he is kept straight by the senate and other councils, oh, and his wife.”

    “Jag is ruling the galaxy?”

    “Yup.”

    Luke followed his hunch. “Good gods! Did he marry Jaina?”

    “Yes. Three years ago. It was a beautiful ceremony, we took your bed and all your machines down to the gardens so you to be there too. It was what Jaina wanted at the wedding, more than anything. Scary thought, isn't it: she controls Jag so Jaina Solo-Fel is ruler of the galaxy.”

    “Scary indeed.”

    “It's even scarier now that she is six months pregnant with twins,” Mara laughed.

    Luke laughed. “Really? How does Han feel about it all?”

    “Oh he’s as contrary as ever, especially now what Lando has a kid that consumes all of Lando’s time and his other drinking buddy was in a coma for all of it.”
     
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  20. EmeraldJediFire

    EmeraldJediFire Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 23, 2012
    marvelous!
     
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  21. Hazel

    Hazel Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 9, 2010
    Jaina filling the galaxy is scary indeed :p Great chapter!
     
  22. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    I second EJF-- simply, absolutely marvelous. [face_dancing] :) [face_sigh] A great reboot [:D]
     
  23. Jedi_Lover

    Jedi_Lover Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 1, 2004
    Very nice. :)
     
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  24. Demendora

    Demendora Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Apr 9, 2010
    The Force owes nothing to Luke, but he and Mara suffered so much, it is obliged to give them another chance at life.
     
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  25. K'Tai qel Letta-Tanku

    K'Tai qel Letta-Tanku Jedi Grand Master star 3

    Registered:
    Apr 18, 2000