Fate, So Beautifully A Star Wars Romance Written by: Nehru_Amidala Inspirations: the myth of Hades and Persephone, Sailor Moon, Edward Scissorhands, The Nutcracker, The Thrawn Trilogy, Neil Gaiman’s Stardust, Downton Abbey Pairings: Thrawn/Jaina (Main!), Luke/Mara, Han/Leia, Jacen/Tenel Ka, Anakin/Tahiri, Ar’alani/Paelleon, Thooraki/Thurfian, Eli/Vah’nya Tropes used in this story and trigger warnings: time travel, true love conquers all, earning a happy ending, grey vs gray morality, miscarriage, premature birth, abandonment, redemption, rising to meet your fate, to see with eyes unclouded Timeline: Mix of Legends and Canon Voice cast list: Thrawn- Benedict Cumberbatch, Jaina- Anne Hathaway, Luke- Mark Hamill, Mara- Karen Gillam, Han- Harrison Ford, Leia- Carrie Fisher, Jacen- Elijah Wood, Tenel Ka- Renee Felice Smith, Ar’alani- Angie Harmon, Paelleon- Joe Spano, Thooraki- Hugh Bonneville, Thurfian- Elizabeth McGovern, Eli- David Tennant, Vah’nya- Stephanie Sheh Author’s note: I claim nothing, except this is probably the VERY FIRST fan fiction is Star Wars fandom history to pair Thrawn with Jaina Solo. Having read all the Legends books, I can say for certainty that everyone will be in character. Any naysayers will be fed to Moro no Kimi. Stave 1: Bounty of the X-Wing It had been only a matter of time and credits before the Bounty Hunters Guild decided to dare face the combined wrath of the New Republic and the New Jedi Order by brazenly attacking the Jedi’s main campus at the Massassi ruins on Yavin IV. The forty million credit bounty on Luke Skywalker’s head for killing Jabba the Hutt was still on the table, but with the simmering Cold War between the Republic coming to an end with the signing of the Bastion Accords five years prior, there were fewer higher hits and with the Jedi’s return to their former glory, the smart money (i.e. Fett) decided to lay low and wait for the right moment. He would collect the bounty on Skywalker and it would be glorious. The time came when the Bounty Hunter’s Guild found Bokku the Hutt’s carbon frozen body in one of the myriad sub basements in Jabba’s now derelict palace, and he was just as nasty as a rattlesnake addicted to rat poison. He demanded to know what was going on, and when he had been informed of the details of the state of the galaxy and was enraged that the bounty on Skywalker had not been cashed in on yet. Bokku was clever for a Hutt, and this made him dangerous. Luke was Vader’s son, and he had soon outfitted the entirety of the Bounty Hunter’s guild with weapons and armor and from there they were off. With communications over the HoloNet closely monitored for terror attacks in this time of galactic peace, Bokku had the foresight to keep everything encrypted and through dead drops. So, when 23 May 26 ABY dawned, EMPs dropped from the pre-dawn skies. The fires burned down, hitting the roofs and knocking out the electronics. Waking up, the younglings were in a frightened panic. Tionne and Kirani Ti tried to calm them, but that was difficult. Scanning the skies, Luke Skywalker cursed, “Damn! They got the jump on us. Looks like Bokku’s taking a page from Thrawn’s playbook. Kam, get the older padawans organized and have their lightsabers ready, we can split up and prevent a ground assault. Artoo, get to the Jade Sabre- call Han and Leia! We need back up!” His pregnant wife, Mara came running up the steps. Luke kissed her gently, How are you? Mara grinned, “We’re fine, farm boy. Kam and Jacen are leading a charge, Anakin, Tahiri, Lowbacca, and Tenel Ka are securing the gate. The younglings are safe. Where are you going?” Luke said he was heading for the hangar, Artoo was firing up the old X-Wing as they spoke. Mara yelled that he was crazy, Fett would be expecting this. Luke agreed, but Bokku would not. That was what worried Mara, Bokku was playing this the way Thrawn would, and Luke knew that. As much he didn’t want to admit it, Mara was right. It was at times like these he was almost glad she was an ex-Imperial. His comm beeped, it was Artoo. Han and Leia were calling. Racing to the ship, Luke turned on the holocamera. “Luke! Are you and the kids all right,” Leia queried frantically as Han pushed in and asked if they needed Wedge to scramble ships. Laser fire rocked the building, oh yeah. “Fire up the frigates, and head for Yavin,” Han hollered. From the other end, Luke and Mara could hear Wedge and Pash Cracken giving orders for Rogue Squadron to head out! Ackbar poked in, “Bokku will be stopped for certain. Can you hold out for a day or two?” Mara grimaced; they might be able to once the shield generators were booted up. Maybe Bel Iblis could spare a Dreadnaught? In the middle of the heated debate, Luke was vaguely aware his X-Wing taking off and heading for the battle, aiming directly for the Slave 1. Wait a second, where was Jaina? “Jaina Luthien Padme Skywalker Organa-Solo, you get back here right now,” Leia shouted into the screen. Too late! Leia groaned, of all her children, why was it that Jaina had to be the most rebellious? Staring out the window of her window, Leia wondered how Jaina had grown away from her upbringing as she sipped her caf. Jaina had been such a rule follower as a child, good at school, sociable, but after she turned 15, Jaina began to push back. She preferred delving into folklore and mythology, rhetoric and developed a slight crush on a certain Imperial Grand Admiral. It was really nothing noticeable, it was just that whenever his picture showed up in print, Jaina’s face would turn bright red and she would stare out into space. Jacen and Anakin had teased her relentlessly about it on end. Of course, Jaina argued they knew nothing of Thrawn’s past or his people. Even now, there was a rift between mother and daughter. It was Jaina who acted as hostess to visiting Imperial officers, while Leia was cold and standoffish. Paelleon was concerned about Leia’s behavior, playing the role of Demeter to Jaina’s Persephone and had said as much. Leia had been about to go off on him, before Han and Luke intervened. Paelleon was making some good points, Leia needed to let go before she drove the wedge even further. To be fair, Jaina admitted that some of it was her fault. She could be pushy and spoke too freely when she was angry, and there was a snarky air about her. She was rough and unpolished, refusing to spend time becoming the next Chief of State, like Leia wanted. Jaina liked politics, but wanted to debate in a small room, not the stadium of the Senate Chamber of the New Republic. Leia was still cold towards any and all Imperial senators, excepting Paelleon and that was only because he was a Corellian, like Dad. Why did her mother have to be such a hypocrite? Uncle Luke’s rickety X-Wing had seen plenty of action during the Galactic Civil War and the number of crises in the following years. It was a persnickety piece of tech, and thus it required a gentle touch. Flying towards Fett, she called him out as a coward. Fett groaned, Solo’s daughter? He had heard of Jaina’s piloting skills, and she was He decided to peel away, and Jaina gave chase. She kept up well and had just executed a perfect Marg Sabl maneuver when Fett moved in behind her, nicking one of the cannons. Bang! Jaina smacked her head against the console and gave chase. No matter how much Fett tried to shake her, Jaina was just too good of a pilot. Leading her into a thick asteroid field, Fett ditched Jaina. The X-Wing lurched sharply as one of the pylons came loose, and nicked an asteroid. The resulting jump triggered a premature jump into hyperspace, and tearing into the fabric of space-time, jumping back in time… Twenty six years in the past, two years before Endor and one standard month before the battle at Hoth, Grand Admiral Thrawn and Darth Vader were overseeing the Seventh Fleet carrying out battle maneuvers outside of Geonosis. For the most part, everything was satisfactory, but it did not live to the high standards set by either man. Konstantin was getting sloppy and at the rate he was going, there was a definite demotion back to Lieutenant sometime in the near future. Despite being only eight thirty in the evening (local time), neither man had slept well the previous night. Today was Padme’s birthday and after everything on Mustafar, Vader had fallen into a vicious cycle of deep depression and guilt that plagued him, day and night. His lashing out further fueled his Dark Side powers, and this pleased Sidious to no end. For Thrawn, his predicament was a bit different. For the past five years or so, a mysterious and beautiful maiden kept popping up in his dreams and later in his art. She was quite beautiful, with long brown hair, fair skin, and hazel eyes that drew you in, and she intrigued him. As everyone on board knew by now, anything that intrigued Thrawn was going to get further study. Last month, he had made a sketch of his alluring siren and showed it to Vader. Vader had been none to pleased with the sketch, but not for the usual reasons. Thrawn had a fine eye for art, and the charcoal picture had been gently rendered. What bothered Vader was the fact how much the girl not only resembled his beloved Padme, but Princess Leia of Alderaan a little bit. He did not know what it portended, so he soberly told Thrawn she was a phantom. Either way, it was she who was on Thrawn’s mind when he was assassinated. He had written on the back: To by beloved darling, I hope we meet in another life. Vader was unsettled and Thrawn noticed, something small and silver skipped across the farthest line of vision. What was that? Thrawn’s best friend, Eli Vanto picked it up. “That’s odd, we have a bogey that just jumped out of hyperspace. Fire away?” Thrawn raised his hand, something was off. “No, not yet. Let’s see what Lord Vader’s opinion is.” Both men turned to Vader. Vader pondered the anomaly, something was twisting the Force, and something was starting to unfold he could not yet comprehend. “It is a Rebel X-Wing, but it is not Skywalker. Something is off, though. I will deal with this, myself.” Nodding to Thrawn, Vader strode out and away, his cape bellowing behind him. There was a deep tremor in the Force, it was in flux. Light and Dark fighting and straining and Vader was confused as his TIE Fighter pulled out of the Chimaera’s docking bay. He noticed the X-Wing, it was Skywalker’s but it was in worse shape than he originally thought. The pilot on the other hand… Force almighty! It was Thrawn’s mystery girl…and the Force was strong with her! Adding to that, she had the Skywalker aura! Luke’s daughter? Vader was darkly thrilled at this revelation, if Luke would not join him, he could marry his daughter of to Thrawn, thereby challenging Palpatine’s claim to the Imperial throne. Emperor Skywalker had a nice ring to it. Reaching out with the Force, Vader learned her name was Jaina. However, he was going to have to change her surname. Antilles was a common enough Corellian name. Smiling darkly at the grand future of House Skywalker, Vader towed the X-Wing back to the docking bay. Thrawn was informed that Vader had returned with the bogey, which turned out to be a rickety X-Wing, back into the docking bay. Pulling up the security footage, it was corrupted and there was no way to defragment it. Whoever it was, Vader was using the Force to hide the pilot’s identity, and this bothered him. He did not understand the Force, and it bothered him as a devout monotheist that he could not grasp the higher concepts of such an ancient religion. He was considering what his next steps would be when Vader commed him. “Ah, Lord Vader. I see you returned with our mystery ship. Was it a Rebel X-Wing as we hypothesized?” “Yes, it was. I wish to speak with you alone. I shall be joining you shortly.” Just a couple of minutes later, Vader and Thrawn left the command bridge and down the hall and into the lift. Vader turned to the Grand Admiral and told him in an undertone, “What I am about to say must stay between the two of us. It is of the highest importance that the Emperor does not learn of any of this.” Thrawn nodded and was somewhat confused, what was going on here? They were walking towards the staterooms where visiting officers stayed during fleet inspections. Vader opened the door and lying in the bed was none other than Thrawn’s mystery girl. For the first time in his life, Thrawn felt a visible blush rise to his powder blue face. “She’s lovely, Lord Vader. Who is she,” he breathed softly, barely stoic at all at this moment, before regaining his composure. He sat down on a chair near the bed and wove his fingers together, his glowing red eyes flitting between the girl and Lord Vader. “This is my granddaughter, Jaina. She is now under your care,” Vader intoned as used the Force to fill out all the requisite paperwork. With that tedious chore taken care of, Vader left Jaina in Thrawn’s care. The Sith Lord strode down the hall, back to his TIE fighter and back to his own flagship. Vader could not but stare at Jaina as she slept, despite the nasty bruise developing on her forehead, she was a sight not seen in any of the art he had studied over the years. Part of him wanted to pull her close and kiss those petal pink lips and hold her close, she looked so soft. However, as a follower of stoicism, he decided he would take delight in watching her sleep. In the morning, they would finally speak. This was well worth a night of waiting. Meanwhile and back in the future, Cracken and Wedge showed up with three cruisers and a Dreadnaught. They pushed back against the Bounty Hunter’s Guild until there had been a forced retreat back to Tatooine and Bokku the Hutt was slain in battle. Doing some clean up, Wedge got a call. “This is Red One. Copy.” “Hey Wedge, it’s Tycho. Has Stardancer come back to base yet? Mom and Dad are getting anxious.” “Jaina? No, haven’t heard anything. Last I recall, she chased after Fett. Let me follow her last known trajectory. I’ll comm Solo when I get back. Over.” Tracing Jaina’s path, Wedge called out and scanned the area for several hours. Darkness there and nothing more. Where was she? Had she made her way back to Yavin? Figuring this was the case, he hightailed it back to the Jedi Academy. Back at the hangar, there was a flurry of activity. The older Jedi and Padawans were regaling each other with stories of how they proudly defended their home. Luke and Mara had to gently rein in Han’s hyperbolic tales and Leia’s laughter. It was into the merry group Wedge entered. Han grinned and waved him over. “Hey Wedge, what’s up?” Wedge looked serious and told them that he could not find Jaina. It was as if she had disappeared. Leia fell to the floor in tears, where had her little girl gone to? Word of Jaina’s disappearance spread like wildfire, some pilots stayed behind and scoured the area. The hours passed and still no word. Where could have Jaina Solo disappeared to?