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Saga Saga - PT No Perfect Way: Post-Yavin Princess Leia, Dear Diary Challenge 2020,

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by DarthIshtar, Jan 1, 2020.

  1. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    Entry 11

    Today was one of the longest of this version of my life. The numbers of hours did not change. I kept my same shift, awoke at the same time, and ate out of habit.

    Luke went on escort duty outside the system. I only heard after he entered hyperspace and Wedge mentioned that the patrol rotation was changed for the day. Han made a crack about him needing to see more of the empire we are fighting. I know that he said something flippant after that—it’s his way of saying hello—but I could not have reported if he even said it in Basic.

    I wasn’t fully conscious for most of the because I knew that someone I have now grown to care for was beyond my ability to protect and today, that didn’t sit well with me. The list of friends and colleagues who are confirmed as having survived Alderaan is not growing longer and it’s difficult to worry that the list of friends lost in the war might have new names on the roster before I’m prepared.

    What an absurd thought. Prepared to lose someone. Yet I accepted that burden when I became part of this rebellion. With less than two weeks since I lost almost everyone, I have a difficult time thinking that I’ll be capable of processing another loss, another formal funeral.

    Perhaps this is why no one told me Luke was heading out on a more dangerous mission.

    Luke wasn’t back by the time I left my station and Willard commanded me to refrain from hovering. Because Wedge knows something of my anxiety, he commed the moment Luke touched down.

    It was difficult to welcome him back as a routine courtesy instead of with the desperate relief that I remember feeling after he came back from the Death Star.
     
  2. Kahara

    Kahara Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2001
    Just got (mostly) caught up on this recently, and wanted to say how much I'm enjoying it! Which is maybe a weird way to put it for the melancholy tone of things, but you know what I mean.

    This is such a nuanced and thoughtful take on what it must have meant for Leia to integrate fully into the Alliance after the destruction of Alderaan. The back-and-forth of going through the stages of grieving in not necessarily linear fashion, and how she feels both painfully close to and guilty towards the other survivors of her planet is captured really well; I loved the meeting with Carlist. It's not easy or simple for either of them, but this handful of Alderaanians are kind of dependent on each other in a new way after the world literally ended for them. @};-

    And I'm really enjoying the bits of everyday Alliance business and how Leia is determined to work her way up from the normal level for a newcomer. The busy-ness is healing in a way, but it definitely presents her with new challenges. I like how the other Rebels are there for her in their own ways, making sure she has practicalities like clothing (so small a thing, but so important!) and that she gets to talk to a therapist. And yes, therapists in space! They exist here, and I love that. =D= It's no miracle cure, but it's so good to see that she has that option open to her in this version.
     
  3. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha 2 Truths 1 Lie Host star 8 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    The list of friends and colleagues who are confirmed as having survived Alderaan is not growing longer and it’s difficult to worry that the list of friends lost in the war might have new names on the roster before I’m prepared.

    What an absurd thought. Prepared to lose someone. Yet I accepted that burden when I became part of this rebellion. With less than two weeks since I lost almost everyone, I have a difficult time thinking that I’ll be capable of processing another loss, another formal funeral.


    Wow, I've never thought of it so concretely, less than 2 weeks! This makes her fortitude even more amazing! [face_love]

    Desperate relief, :( [face_thinking] you can well imagine that would be a natural reaction in such situations where loved ones are at risk. =D=
     
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  4. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    author's Note: I have to admit that these two responses have gotten me through a difficult week. Thank you for taking the time to encourage me.
    *
    ENTRY 12

    Today should have been an ordinary day, but midway through breakfast, Willard asked to have a private word with me. I've grown to dread these discreet moments, as they are usually for potentially sensitive topics.

    Today's blow is that we are going to be evacuating as soon as preparations can be made. The private word was so I didn't hear it through the gossipmongers that Darth Vader has been sighted again.

    It was a possibility, of course, since no one had found debris from his TIE fighter and Han didn't know if any pilots had been clear of the Death Star's radius, but TIE fighters are not hyperspace capable. Even if his personal fighter were able to make a jump, we know that this craft was disabled. It would have taken in-flight repairs to escape the system.

    These are all thoughts that came after the numb shock that swiftly turned into a kind of fury that killing Tarkin did not eliminate Vader in the same conflagration. The news made it difficult for me to speak as my throat burned with bile and I could barely concentrate with the pounding of my pulse in my ears.

    I didn't ask for a holo for proof. I am certain that I would have had some kind of actual fit if I had to identify him this close to my delayed execution. I simply asked, "You've seen this for yourself?"

    He nodded. "The agent who delivered this intelligence made sure of it."

    an optimist might have said that as Vader was nothing more than a monster in armor, they might have arranged a body double. Rumors even say that the injuries that put him in that suit made him so dependent on mechanical parts that he is mostly machine and could be convincingly replaced by a droid. This is all wishful thinking, of course, but it doesn't matter if he could be impersonated.

    We did not find a body and that means it is very possible that Vader has returned to the Empire with accurate coordinates for the base I nearly gave my life to conceal.

    By lunch, evacuation orders were issued. It was to take place over six hours, but once word got out, the entire operation took just under five hours. I felt certain until the moment that the last transport cleared the atmosphere that we would have to run a blockade.

    By some miracle, though, we did not run across so much as an Imperial probe on our way out of the system. Someone in command, probably Dodonna, decided that I was best served by an assignment on the Falcon and Han didn't bother to hang around for extra reconnaissance. We were one of the last ships to leave Yavin, but he didn't try to test his luck. I can't tell if it's because he knows how close a call the Battle of Yavin was or if he's been loitering in our mess hall long enough to have respect for those we lost in another blind panic at Scarif.

    Luke was escort to the first transport to leave. It was a relief to find him and his ship in one piece once we reached the rendezvous point and he gleefully announced that he was off-duty for the next jump, so could come on board. The second jump is going to take almost two days, so we have a chance to spend time together that will be uninterrupted by patrols or duty shifts.

    Chewie let us have control of the dejarik board and I taught Luke something about strategy while Han enjoyed the chance to beat someone at the game. Han wouldn't let us in the galley for dinner, Luke took over the steristeam after a tense flight in a cramped snubfighter, and Chewie disappeared in the direction of his cabin. So I am on the same bunk that I used to recoup my strength on the trip from my home system to my new home base at Yavin, reflecting that I am actually handling this new development fairly well.

    Of course, I have been too busy to worry about what might have happened. I suspect I will pay for that later tonight, but I will miss Yavin. Hiking into the jungle, waking up to the occasional rainfall outside my window. It wasn't home for long, but it was the first place I had peace after losing my home and that will always mean something to me.
     
  5. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha 2 Truths 1 Lie Host star 8 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Very realistic and likely consequence of realizing Vader survived and Leia's feelings on that fact as well as viewing Yavin as a place where she found a measure of peace. I continue to enjoy her burgeoning friendships.
     
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  6. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    ENTRY 13

    By some miracle, nothing on the Falcon malfunctioned today. We all got weary of Han and Chewbacca goading us into losing games of sabacc or dejarik and, naturally, a Corellian smuggler did not have any of the traditional games I played at court.

    I felt no need to read the employee manual for my station again or browse Han's readerchips. If my friends on base had truly wanted to help, they would have lent me a few volumes of something entertaining, if not classic. I tried writing down memories of home--my therapist thinks it would do me good to compile a written history to look back on in darker days.

    In the middle of that, though, I caught Han trying to look over my shoulder and shut the datapad down. He laughed at that and started speculating on what was so scandalous that I had to keep it under passcode and encryption.

    "Dear Diary, I will go mad if I have to wear white one more day. Dear Diary, I secretly stole all the salt from the mess hall. Bland food makes the troops feel more oppressed, so they'll fight harder. Dear Diary, guess which mercenary I have a crush on?"

    "You caught me," I interrupted. "I wasn't ready to profess my undying love to Chewie, but if I have your blessing..."

    Captain Solo's personal upholstery ruffled my hair on his way past at that. Luke, having only heard the last sentence, forgot to drink his caf. "What's this about undying love?"

    "Her Worshipfulness has decided to give up treason and live in a tree,' Han explained. "It's all terribly romantic."

    All things considered, that doesn't sound like a bad life, but I doubt the High Command would agree to it.

    "I caught her updating her diary," Han stage-whispered.

    I pretended indignation. "I was not. Princesses don't keep diaries; they have royal archives and sludgenews to invent what they were thinking on any given day."

    "Let it be known, then, that Her Royal Highnessness was contemplating galactic peace on this the third day of the seventh month," Han proclaimed, "and dreaming of very hairy kisses. I'll let history decide if that came from the archives or not."

    It's been weeks since anyone teased me with such gentleness and failed to look nervous at making me smile. I had been thinking about a place on Thon where the thrantas weren't afraid of getting friendly with the visitors to their nature preserve and that meant I was contemplating peace of sorts.

    "Truth be told," I said, "I was looking up your personnel file."

    "Don't have one," Han boasted. "You can't have a personnel file if you never join."

    "Precisely, but I suspect the Imperial academy has plenty to tell me," I informed him. "Were you dishonorably discharged for passing your marksmanship class?"

    "Theft," he corrected. "Who told you I'd been dishonorably discharged?"

    "You bragged about it to Wedge," Luke recalled. "Theft of what?"

    "Some big walking carpet," Han replied with a grin. "Best heist I've ever pulled off."

    "I think my personnel file has two entries," Luke said after we stopped laughing. "'Point this pilot towards a Death Star' and 'Scolded for having broken his targeting computer.'"

    "Your commendation is in there, along with your base and unit assignment, bunk number, and the results of your physical." I realised after a moment that I'd said too much and blushed. "I haven't read all of it, just enough to find out where I should write up the commendation. The rest is standard procedure."

    "Sure," Han scoffed. "You know my military history and the kid's cholesterol levels. What's in your personnel file?"

    It made me wonder if there is input from my therapist, as well as my supervisor. I am sure that High Command has kept track of my activities on my father's behalf from the age of 12 on. It certainly will have notes from the medcenter on my conditions after the return from imprisonment.

    What I said was, "Wouldn't you like to know?"
     
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  7. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha 2 Truths 1 Lie Host star 8 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Fantastic!! I love the easy, teasing tone. Leia really needs these kinds of moments. And Han is just the one to supply them in abundance. [face_laugh] [face_love]
     
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  8. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Sep 9, 2000
    Brilliant!
    For one moment, I thought he was going to say toilet paper!
     
  9. Kahara

    Kahara Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2001
    [face_laugh] Han and Leia. What more can I say?

    :p It's really fun to see the three of them hanging out and being the bunch of jokey, silly, overgrown kids that they are at times. Sure they can be all serious when the situation calls for it, but this downtime is necessary!

    [face_laugh]
     
  10. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    Note; I have not forgotten this, just got caught up in finishing my Leia alternate universe and starting the sequel to it today. I will be updating tomorrow and more regularly.
     
  11. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    It´s okay for me, because you always Bless us with something gorgeous to read and fully enjoy each time you are able to make an update. The bather, the bitter sweet notes, the pure honesty and so much more. And you take all those things and mix them nicely together.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2021
  12. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    AN: I binge-read some Leia comics that informed this post. I'm not following that, but using it as a catalyst. Sorry for the longish absence. I blame the need to start the Sins of the Father sequel. In fact, I wrote a massive speech that doesn't need to be used for a few chapters before coming over here, just to get it out of my brain.
    **
    ENTRY 14
    We take turns keeping watch, though there is rarely anything more interesting than a new pattern in the mottling of hyperspace to observe. Today, I managed to keep a normal sleep schedule and it was 0600 when my alarm woke me. I experienced the usual disorientation that comes with relying on a chrono for the time of day, but that was suddenly pushed to the back of my mind by the fact that someone was knocking insistently on the crew cabin door.

    To my relief, my visitor was Luke, but to my dismay, I knew immediately that something was wrong. While Luke is becoming a dear friend, he is a terrible liar. Han would have left some mystery, but I did not wait for an explanation before running to the cockpit in bare feet and my nightclothes. It was a mark of the grim mood that Han did not make some remark on my state of undress, but pointed me to the navigator's console and pulled up a transcript of General Dodonna's message.

    It is not enough that the Empire destroyed my world, but there was a whisper of two additional Alderaanian deaths in the day after the Battle of Yavin. I wasn't meant to hear the rumor, but accepting a posting in the command center made the speculation easy to overhear before someone ordered the person to keep their mouth shut.

    I have been waiting for days to receive news of more people confirmed as alive, but Dodonna has confirmed that the list of surviving Alderaanians is shrinking in a manner consistent with targeted efforts and in conjunction with Imperial operations.

    Alderaan has not been an erstwhile world for a month yet and someone in the Empire is picking off those who lived long enough to miss it. Dodonna believes it to be another effort to draw us out and to show no mercy to the displaced. It's reminiscent of the attacks against the refugee camps on Ghorman. It will discourage those who wish to fight in my world's memory from joining our cause.

    Those were far-reaching insights, but I shut the console down immediately after reading it and retreated to the refresher until I stopped shaking. When i emerged, Luke and Han were both waiting for me.

    "The walking carpet's keeping an eye on things," Han stated. "What do you want to do?"

    The answer was to be sick and curl into a ball and possibly scream until my throat bled. But none of those things would give me reason to feel any peace and that was what I hoped for.

    "Keep on course," I said.

    "You don't want to take a personal day?" Luke suggested. "I'm pretty sure we can find something to break if you need some breathing room."

    I clasped my hands at the back of my neck as if trying to protect myself or brace my head to hold it high. "Can we sit down?"

    "Sure," Han said. "I'll get the drinks."

    He is, by no means, an alcoholic, but he's said that the medkit on board is Corellian whiskey and a good blaster. all drinks are medicinal to a degree. Once he returned with three glasses and a bottle of something stronger than I normally approve of, they both waited for me to talk.

    "We have to go to base," I said. "We have duties and..."

    "Duties be damned," Han said somewhat predictably. "I'm not saying you should take a vacation, but this news would shake anyone. Do you need a personal day like the kid suggested, no questions asked by anyone on this ship?"

    What would I do with that time? I thought. I can succumb to nightmares in any sector of the galaxy. I can mourn here or before meeting my comrades for breakfast. I can hide here for a personal day, but it wouldn't stop the v'taiaketh from being hunted down. An entire enclave on Palpatine's homeworld was wiped out, which is what brought the matter to the High Command's attention. Alderaan had allies in many sectors and Imperial Intelligence will move swiftly to determine whether or not those worlds are harboring the refugees.

    Swift action is needed, but I am only one woman and delaying by a day would reasonably only have an impact on myself. Luke might be chided for missing patrol duty and the mess hall might be out of Han's favorite dessert...

    "No questions asked by anyone here includes you, Leia," Luke murmured when i had spent a few minutes in the middle of a mental whirlwind. "I know you're thinking about a lot of things, but go back to the first answer you had and let's talk about that."

    Han nodded at him in approval and I blurted out what had crossed my mind first: "I need me to help the Alliance as soon as possible."

    "So, straight home?" Han clarified.

    I nodded.

    "That's decided," he said, "but what do you need to bounce off of your replacement therapists in the meantime?"

    I downed my liquid courage then and Han poured me another, which I ignored for the time being. "Days ago, it would have taken me far longer to compose myself," I said. "I appreciate the respect for my privacy and the solicitousness regarding my well-being, though."

    "There's nothing wrong with it being easier," Han said.

    "It's not easier," I corrected immediately. "Unimaginable horror is beginning to feel commonplace and that is what troubles me."

    Mother would warn me to not be numb. Father would instruct me to use this disquiet for the greater good. Their lessons have not left me, but being able to speak calmly about this continued genocide makes me feel as though I have separated myself from the daughter they raised.

    "This isn't a bad thing," Luke interjected. "I have pretty awful days and ones where it doesn't feel that overwhelming, but it doesn't mean I don't miss Ben's guidance and Biggs' friendship."

    "I know." Luke has yet to miss a duty shift, but I have seen grief on his face that cannot be entirely blamed on his sympathy for me and I know that he has lost family and friends in an appallingly short amount of time. "It feels wrong to be able to take this in stride."

    It feels as though I have been living with chronic pain and am unaccustomed to having a medication eradicate the agony.

    "Then don't take it in stride," Han suggested. "If you are going straight home to base, hit the ground running if you want to."

    "From the comfort of my comm station," I replied with a wry twist to my mouth. "I think this is the first time I have disliked that thought."

    "Then talk to the powers that be," he said.

    I am not ready for a battlefield just yet, but perhaps he's right on that matter.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2020
  13. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha 2 Truths 1 Lie Host star 8 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    "It's not easier," I corrected immediately. "Unimaginable horror is beginning to feel commonplace and that is what troubles me."

    Mother would warn me to not be numb. Father would instruct me to use this disquiet for the greater good. Their lessons have not left me, but being able to speak calmly about this continued genocide makes me feel as though I have separated myself from the daughter they raised.


    Oh, this is a definite consequence of so many horrific things unfolding continually. :eek: :(

    Very insightful and love the support from Luke and Han.

    Luke also has lost friends and family in a short period of time and hasn't had proper time to grieve, but has to allow for it periodically. [face_thinking]
     
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  14. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    Han and Luke become family. (Okay, Luke already is, but not even he knows that at this point.) I hope Leia can see that she gained something despite all the losses.

    Great writing as usual!
     
  15. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    Starting this up again because I should write things I love.
    *
    ENTRY 15

    The major news of today is that we touched down at the new base. My comm station is still being wired and I’m not on duty as it is, so I did something more productive.

    I have yet to memorize the names of every person I met in passing at Yavin, but I used the need to put down roots to check on the well-being of those I’ve grown fond of.

    Vera and I spent four very focused hours stocking the mess hall. She was able to account for each of our mutual friends and I let her in on the scandalous secret of my whirlwind romance with our local Wookiee.

    She asked me about the deaths of my fellow Alderaanians, not as a matter of gossip, but to inform her concern for me. Since arriving, I have not heard of new murders and two of the code names on my list have been confirmed as alive. It was good to have minor examples of good news to mitigate the awful.

    By virtue of our assignment, Vera and I were the most admired women on base. She allowed me the honor of turning on the power to the first cooktop and, while most of the soldiers raided the dry goods for something quick, I made two omelets for mechanics and brewed a pot of caf for Commander Willard. He kissed my hand gallantly for that favor, while Wedge used his charms to talk Vera into handing over enough toast for his whole squadron.

    Han and Chewie came straight from the hangar, looking self-satisfied and reporting that they had fixed the broken life support controls. Not one of them had told me there was such a defect and I was momentarily tempted to scold them for the oversight. They didn’t want a crate of food, just borrowed a cup of flour and informed me that they’d be using it for something worth trying as soon as I was done there.

    I stayed long enough for the first wave to pass, then retreated to the Falcon. Han had made a kind of bread pudding with the borrowed flour and served it as an afterthought to what can best be described as mystery meat. I claimed to have filled up at the mess hall, but enjoyed the pudding.

    As the quarters have yet to be assigned, I claimed one of the bunks in the wing usually taken over by transient soldiers who are needing a mattress to drool on before they head to a different battlefront. I was not the only person in there on the Empire’s most wanted list and discovered that Commander Willard talks in his sleep.

    I hope the same cannot be said of me. There are things I can’t tell my therapist just yet and do not want the first audience to be half of Blue Squadron.
     
  16. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha 2 Truths 1 Lie Host star 8 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Leia seems to be settling down with friends and a sense of somewhat equanimity =D=
     
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  17. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    ENTRY 16

    I awoke with an aching head and clenched jaws. I was curled against the wall. When I descended the ladder, I was shown a few nervous smiles, but no one averted their eyes or stared.

    I think I passed the night quietly, which is why the others are looking cautious instead of alarmed. When waiting in line for the sink, three people offered to let me go first.

    “Your Highness,” Mercer said, “please take my place. You have places to be.”

    “Please stay right there,” I responded with an equally nervous smile. “You have places to be first.”

    I am one of a dozen who hold my position, while she is one of thirty-six. She was, undoubtedly, assuming that I was stopping to brush my teeth before single-handedly attacking Sate Pestage. I find comfort in being more ordinary than they imagine.

    They ran out of eggs while I waited for breakfast. I had to wait a few minutes for a table because the mess hall is not yet fully assembled. When I arrived at my post, I found my colleague mopping up caf that she had snuck out of the mess.

    We arrived here in early summer, so I did some exploring after my shift ended. It reminds me pleasantly of Chandrila in its climate and tomorrow, I think I’ll venture further into the forest. I even hope to invite someone on the adventure.
     
  18. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Jun 14, 2005
    Leia has so much inner strength. And her friends are her outer line of defence. Great character writing still going on here! @};-
     
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  19. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha 2 Truths 1 Lie Host star 8 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Leia is balancing being one of the prominent members of the Rebel hierarchy with being "one of the gang." [face_thinking] I am glad this base is hospitable as far as climate ;) and that one can have serene moments in forested glades :)