Saga Under a Dark Sky: AU, Luke

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Raissa Baiard, Jun 21, 2014.


    JEDIFLYSWATTER Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 10, 2004
    Boy that Leia is scary! I sure would not want to share a room with her. Would not get any sleep. I am really surprised that the rebels did not come and get Ben long time ago and help him. But I guess the Force had a say in that. I have been waiting for Luke to go over to the Lars homestead. Can't wait to see what happens. Thanks and great job.@};-
    Kahara likes this.
  2. jedi1952

    jedi1952 Jedi Master star 1

    Apr 15, 2007
    I saw your note way back:

    [QUOTE [When I researched the Noble Houses of Alderaan, I discovered that Breha Organa, née Antilles, would have been Clarys's aunt. She was Raymus Antilles's sister, and they also had another sister, Deara. Deara was an Imperial spy who nearly outed Leia as Force Sensitive, and was subsequently exiled by Breha. Here, she's more of a social-climber than a spy. She takes over the role of Nevis Antilles, Clarys's oldest brother, from my original story. I thought it was slightly less repugnant to have a social-climbing aunt who wanted to use Clarys to advance her position at court than a brother.][/QUOTE]

    I would be interested in knowing where you found the info about Deara being an Imperial spy.
  3. JadeLotus

    JadeLotus Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Mar 27, 2005
    So Luke is off to the Lars homestead - hopefully to find some answers!
  4. jedi1952

    jedi1952 Jedi Master star 1

    Apr 15, 2007
    Finally caught up with this story, tfn failed again to send an email regarding and update. It still loses its settings. I guess I will have to manually refresh them every time I log in.

    Anyway, I don't believe I have ever told you how much I am enjoying this story. Although they are the dark versions of Luke and Leia they are still very much in character. I also like how you have managed to incorporate cannon events into your AU as well as the SW trivia.
    Ewok Poet and Kahara like this.
  5. Kahara

    Kahara Force Ghost star 4

    Mar 3, 2001
    I think Laine is spot on in her assessment of Leia here. She's definitely going to fight like a tiger to withstand any tiny sliver of ambiguity about her place in the world. I can't wait to see what Luke finds at the homestead. He does seem to be growing apart from his sister's world bit-by-bit, and it's a hopeful and dangerous time...
  6. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    JEDIFLYSWATTER, NightWatcher91, Priyanka, EGKenobi

    jedi1952: the information on Deara Antilles comes from her article on Wookieepedia.

    Thanks to everyone for reading and reviewing. Hope you enjoy the trip to the Lars Farmstead.....

    Chapter 16

    The remains of the Lars homestead were a little more than a kilometer from the Darklighters' home. It should have been an easy walk, even in the Tatooine heat. Luke had long ago mastered using the Force Body power to regulate his body and increase his endurance. At that short a distance, a hike across the dunes should only have been a bit more taxing than a stroll through the streets of Coruscant.

    He hadn't counted on the sand.

    It dragged at his feet; shifting, sliding and sucking at them with every step. It reflected the sun, millions of tiny mirrors throwing harsh light and heat back at him. Force Body notwithstanding, Luke was sun-blind and sweating in his dress blacks before he was halfway there. And worst of all, the vile, gritty stuff was everywhere. Somehow it even managed to work itself into his knee-high boots. By the time he'd reached the old farm, Luke had developed a special hatred for sand.

    He paused for a moment to catch his breath in the paltry shadow cast by the dome that covered he entrance to the farmstead. Like the one at the Darklighter farm, it was a simple structure, a pourstone dome a meter in diameter and two meters tall with an arched doorway, but there the resemblance ended. The entrance was scorched and blackened by the fire the Tusken Raiders had set after murdering the Lars family and maiming Old Ben. Abandoned and neglected for over a decade, the small building was pockmarked and crumbling. The dunes had encroached upon it, piling sand around its sides and half filling the archway. A few more years, and it would be lost to the desert altogether. A feeling of desolation and despair clung to the farm; standing there, Luke could almost believe that it was haunted.

    As he peered into the darkened doorway, he realized the buzzing in his head that had been present since he'd stepped off the Tantive in Mos Eisley had stopped. This, then, was where the Force had been leading him. Perhaps there were answers in the haunted farmstead below, as well as ghosts.

    Luke raised his right hand and reached out through the Force as he swept his hand to the side. The sand clogging the staircase parted and flowed to the right. He repeated the gesture with his left hand, and again, the sand moved aside, creating a narrow path down the stairs. He took a deep breath, stepped into the crumbling dome and descended, sweeping the sand away as he went. When Luke reached the courtyard at the bottom of the stairs, he swept his hands in a wide arc, to make a space for himself to stand. Without the electro-static damper to keep out the sand, the desert had taken over here, too. In places the dunes were as high as Luke's waist.

    Looking around, Luke felt as if he'd slipped into some strange alternate reality. The homestead was the twin of the Darklighters'--he recognized the archway to the dining room on the left and the doors to the bedrooms on the right-- but where the Darklighters' home was alive and vibrant, an eerie stillness smothered the farm; the only sound was Luke's breathing and the quiet shush of blowing sand, like the whispers of ghosts. Dark streaks of soot climbed up the courtyard's walls. In its center, a twisted and blackened vaporator reached up to the sky like a dying creature mired in the sand.

    A tiny whisper in the Force drew Luke toward the far right corner of the courtyard and up a short flight of steps to a metal door. Something important lay behind it, he knew, but the long ago fire had damaged fused the locking mechanism. Luke pulled his lightsaber free from his belt and ignited it, plunging his scarlet blade into the lock. He stabbed impatiently at the access panel. Gears ground inside the door, but it remained stubbornly shut. Luke raised his saber again; he'd come this far and he wasn't about to be deterred by a balky door. He sliced the door from top to bottom, and the metal panel pitched forward to the sand with a muffled thump.

    This tiny room, at least, was undamaged by the fire. Indeed, it seemed frozen in time. His scalp prickled as he peered into a child's room-- the nursery of Owen and Beru Lars' vanished nephew. The late afternoon sun slanted into the tiny room, illuminating a mural of the twin suns rising over the dunes where a herd of happy bantha frolicked. A crib took up most of the left side of the room, a mobile of suns and stars dangled over it. Its slatted side was halfway down, and a yellow wool blanket was draped over the side, caught where it had fallen. The nursery seemed to hold its breath as he took a cautious step inside.

    Something squished underfoot. Luke jumped back with a yelp, then laughed at himself when he saw what it was-- a small plush bantha, just the right size for an infant. A whimsical smile curved its features and its button eyes glinted in the dim sunlight. The bantha wore an orange saddle embroidered with red and gold suns. Someone had poured time and love into the small toy; he felt unaccountably sad as he looked at it. Luke reached down to pick it up.

    ....and the universe tipped sideways.

    He was half asleep when the woman snatched him up from his bed. She held him too tight, crushing him against her shoulder as she ran. Her breath came in ragged, sobbing gasps and her fear enveloped him like a smothering blanket. She'd never felt like this before; she was always so calm and warm and safe. Luke began to wail.

    "Sh, sh, Luke. It's all right," she whispered, but the panic in her voice belied her words. She stopped and fumbled frantically at a door. In the distance, Luke heard loud voices and strange crashing sounds, and felt the waves of anger and terror. The woman sobbed harder and lurched into the garage as the door slid open.

    The room was dark and dusty and smelled it like metal and oil. The woman staggered toward the speeder that was parked in the center. She hurriedly laid Luke in the passenger's seat instead of putting him into his carrier. The bench seat was hard and hot beneath him. He didn't like it and fussed harder. "Sh, sh," she told him again,

    Luke felt the dark man's presence before she did. Shadows swirled around him, full of anger, fear and bitterness. "Beru," his stentorian voice rasped. "Give me the child."

    Her spirit quailed. "Please," she begged, sagging to her knees. "Please, don't hurt him. He's just a baby! Please!" The dark man's anger surged. There was a hiss and a sudden flash of red, and her terror vanished. She vanished. Luke reached out for her, but he couldn't feel her anywhere. She was gone. He screamed and beat the air with tiny, impotent fists.

    Suddenly, the dark one loomed over him, scooping him into a hard, cold embrace. Luke wailed again. He wanted Beru, not this hard, angry man. He reached out and pushed him away with all his unformed will.

    And amazingly, the dark man reached back with a touch that was surprisingly gentle. "Luke," he said hesitantly, as if testing the sound of the name. "Luke, I am your father." Luke stopped crying as an uncertain tendril of love caressed him. It unfolded slowly, then burst into bloom, an emotion almost blinding in its intensity. The feeling was almost familiar, and Luke slowly relaxed into the dark man's arms.

    There was another stranger waiting for them when the dark man carried Luke out into the courtyard. His presence was as bright as the other's was dark. "Anakin," he said. There was no anger in his voice, just a depth of sadness.

    "Obi-Wan," the dark man said, hatred crackling in his voice. The dark man's hatred flared, and the world exploded into crashing flashes of red and blue. A welter of conflicting emotions threatened to bury Luke. It was all too much for him; it enveloped him and everything went dark.

    When Luke came back to himself, he was on his knees in the nursery-- his nursery-- and his face was wet with tears. He was the Lars' missing nephew, but it hadn't been Tusken Raiders that had taken him and murdered Owen and Beru. It had been his father.

    He'd thought to find answers about his family here, but he'd only found more questions. How had he gotten here, to this backrocket planet and who were the Lars to him? Beru had loved him; Luke felt that much in his vision, and he had loved her, too, inasmuch as an infant a few months old could love. So who was she? Could Beru Lars have been the mother he couldn't remember? If she was, then why had his father killed her?

    The afternoon breeze skirled a ribbon of sand around him. Luke shoved himself to his feet. He would not let the desert take this tiny oasis. He banished the snaking sand with a flick of the Force and levitated the fallen door back in place. He sealed it shut, a memorial to Beru, who had loved him, however briefly.

    The stuffed bantha was still in his hand. Luke tucked it into his belt pouch as he began his journey back.
  7. Laine_Snowtrekker

    Laine_Snowtrekker Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Jul 8, 2003
    Oh, wow, this is fantastic.

    Leia's not gonna like that Luke's changing. And Vader--if Vader is still around in all his cybernetic glory--he might not like it too much, either. (At least on the surface, methinks. After all, Luke was the catalyst for Vader in a different timeline.)

    Anyway, I love it and want more!!
  8. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Breathtaking reveal! =D= Yup, Luke has definitely reached a turning point, an incredible literal aha! moment.
  9. jedi1952

    jedi1952 Jedi Master star 1

    Apr 15, 2007
    That was so well done. I actually felt as though I was there. Interesting twist as well.

    Thank you for the Wookiepedia link. Now I know why I never heard of her, I never read the books later in the series.
  10. NightWatcher91

    NightWatcher91 Jedi Knight star 2

    Jun 7, 2014
    Big turning point for Luke. Amazing update.
  11. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    NightWatcher91, EGKenobi, Priyanka, JEDIFLYSWATTER

    Chapter 17

    What am I doing here? Clarys wondered as she stared out across the sand. Why in all the worlds was she standing here under the blazing Tatooine suns waiting for Lord Vader to return from the Lars farmstead? Only a week before, she had fled from him, hiding in her room, supply closets, the 'fresher....anywhere, just so she wouldn't have to be near him. So why was she here now? Clarys had asked herself that question a million times in the hour she'd been waiting, and she could only come up with one good answer.

    No one else was going to do it.

    She couldn't fault the Darkligters for not pursuing Lord Vader to the Lars farmstead. Though they had been kind hosts, even to the Lord and Lady Vader, Clarys understood that they had their own concerns to take care of, their own family to protect. Huff had foisted the young Sith Lord on them, passing off the danger of having Darth Vader's children under his roof and disrupting his brother's quiet life. Now Jula had his hands full checking the vaporators, after missing a full morning's work accompanying Clarys to Anchorhead, and Silya had to prepare dinner for a crowd while keeping her children out of the Vaders' dark gaze.

    Nor could Clarys truly blame Sergeants Banir and Paez. Though they were nominally her escort, their orders from the Lady Vader, and she had flatly forbidden them to even think of following her brother off on some wild bantha chase. If he wanted to go running off into the desert like a fool, Lady Vader had sneered, he could damned well take care of himself. Clarys supposed he could. Still, relying only on oneself seemed like a sad and lonely way to live, particularly when the ones who should have cared for you the most valued you only slightly more than a pile of bantha fodder.

    Now Lady Vader she could blame for not caring. She was Lord Vader's sister, his twin, and yet sometimes she held him in as much contempt as the rest of the galaxy. Clarys couldn't imagine feeling that way about her brother. She would do anything for Kitt, as he would for her. She wondered again what kind of family life Lord Vader had with the galaxy's most feared man for a father and a sister who loathed the entire galaxy.

    It seemed that only Clarys was left to wonder whether he would come back at all, to worry that he'd succumb to heat care. And though she didn't want to, there was no good reason for her to, she did care Lord Vader is not your friend, she reminded herself sternly. No matter how nice or polite he is to you, he is not your friend. Clarys knew that, but somewhere during all their games of dejarik, she'd stopped being afraid of him. She'd started to like him. Clarys sagged against the dome that covered the Darklighters' stairwell and hugged her arms around herself; the pourstone was hot as an oven beneath her back. Lady Vader was right; she was a fool.

    The sound of footsteps came pattering up the stairs. Gavin peered out of the doorway. "Hey, Princess," he said. "Mom said I should come keep you company." He rummaged in a large canvas satchel that was slung over his shoulder, pulled out a carafe and something wrapped in a napkin. "Here," he said, thrusting them at her.

    The deliciously spicy smell of Silya's ahrisa wafted from the napkin. Clarys's stomach rumbled, but she shook her head. "Thank you, but you should really save them for Lord Vader. He'll need them much more than I do."

    "Uh huh." Gavin eyed her doubtfully. "You better drink the milk, at least, or you'll dry up like a piece of chokie." He held out the chilled carafe and gave it an enticing shake, as if offering it to one of his small sisters.

    "Well, I certainly don't want that," Clarys said, with a smile. She took the cold bottle from him and took a sip-- or at least she meant to just take a sip, but the blue milk was so deliciously cold that she found herself gulping it.

    "Hey, slow down!" Gavin admonished her. "Drink it all that fast and you're gonna be sick!" Embarrassed, Clarys stoppered the carafe and handed it back. Gavin waved it away. "Nah, Mom sent plenty." He unslung the satchel and pulled out another bottle as he plopped down onto the sand. He unwrapped a packet of ahrisa, stuffed a piece into his mouth and handed another to Clarys. She took it and settled herself gingerly on the warm sand next to him.

    Gavin munched on his ahrisa, while giving her an odd, speculative look. "Are you going to marry Lord Vader?" he asked with his mouth full.

    Clarys fumbled her ahrisa and nearly dropped it onto the sand. "What?! No! Why?!"

    Gavin shrugged. "Uncle Huff said Lord Vader was courting you. That's what courting means, isn't it? Like Fixer and Camie?" His face screwed up into a look of distaste that left no doubt what he thought of Fixer, Camie, courting and all things romantic.

    "No," Clarys hastened to assure him. "I mean, yes, that's what courting means, but we're not...I mean he's just... " Clarys trailed off, unable to find a coherent way to finish that sentence.

    "Uh huh," Gavin said again, with the same doubtful glance. Clarys fell to nibbling at her ahrisa in silence, mortified that he would think she was somehow romantically involved with Lord Vader. Her cheeks burned, though Gavin appeared not to notice as he attacked another piece of ahrisa. He was on his fourth piece, eating with the steady determination of a hungry boy, when he suddenly looked up and squinted into the setting suns. He jumped up, pointing to a small, dark shape on the horizon. "Look, there he is! Lord Vader! Lord Vader!" Gavin called, waving his arms wildly and began to run out towards him.

    Clarys hesitated. If she'd been foolish to wait out in the heat for Lord Vader, she'd be doubly foolish to go haring off into the desert after him. Still...she'd been waiting for him this long, and there was no one here but Gavin to see her acting childishly... Clarys shrugged off the remnants of her princessly decorum, grabbed up the canvas satchel the and ran after Gavin.

    She nearly lost her footing several times trying to run in the shifting sand-- how did Gavin manage so easily?-- and was panting hard when she caught up with them. Lord Vader's black uniform was streaked with a layer of dust, his shiny nerf hide boots had been scuffed by the sand, and his neat queue was straggling out of its silver clasp. He looked tired, but not nearly as worn as Clarys felt. Gavin trotted beside him, demonstrating the look on Lady Vader's face when Clarys announced that she intended to wait for him. From Lord Vader's expression, he'd either swallowed too much sand or he was trying not to laugh. She staggered to a stop next to him and reached into the satchel. "Lord Vader," she gasped, holding out a bottle of blue milk.

    He snatched it from her and eagerly gulped it down. When it was it gone, he sighed and handed the bottle back. "You waited for me?" Lord Vader asked, cocking an eyebrow at her.

    "Oh, well..." Clarys shrugged, still panting a bit. "That's what friends do."

    "Friends?" Lord Vader's eyebrow edged higher, his tone somewhere between teasing and polite disbelief.

    Oh, stang! Why did she have to say that? They weren't friends. Leaving aside the fact that he was a Sith Lord and she was on a covert mission for the Rebel Alliance, what did she even know about him? Only that he'd lost his mother and liked to play dejarik. As Lady Vader had so pointedly reminded her, he did not need Clarys. She was just a silly, stupid girl; there was nothing she could offer him. Clarys toyed with a sticky strand of hair and waited for him to laugh at her.

    Gavin saved her by tugging insistently on Lord Vader's sleeve. "Hey! Is the Lars place really haunted?" he demanded.

    "Yes," Lord Vader answered, looking back over his shoulder towards the old farmstead. "But you don't have to worry about the ghosts. They were just sad and wanted someone to hear their story." Clarys frowned; it really wasn't nice to tease Gavin that way. Then she saw the faraway look in Lord Vader's eyes and realized he wasn't teasing. She wondered what exactly he had seen at the farm; she could well imagine that poor Owen and Beru Lars would make very sad ghosts after what the Sand People had done to them and their infant nephew.

    "Huh," Gavin huffed. He'd clearly been hoping for a livelier sort of haunting. He stood back, hands on his hips and face scrunched thoughtfully, appraising Lord Vader. "You know, you're not as scary as I thought you'd be."

    Lord Vader's eyes widened and the choking-on-sand expression crossed his features again, but this time, he burst into laughter. He seemed almost a different person when he laughed, Clarys thought. At that moment, she could believe he was close to her age, that he could have been one of her friends. "I'm not?" Lord Vader said. "Well, maybe not." His voice lowered as he stared off towards to the Darklighter farm. "But I know someone who is." Clarys followed his gaze and saw the figure of a woman in the doorway, a dark shape among the shadows. She didn't have to see her face to feel the Lady Vader's glare.

    She was waiting for them when they reached the farm, arms crossed over her chest, sneering at them as if she'd just discovered a nest of vrelts in her bunk. "Enjoy your little jaunt, did you?"

    Lord Vader stepped between his sister and Clarys and Gavin. "It was very enlightening," he replied coolly.

    His sister snorted. "Well, it's about time you got back. They wouldn't serve dinner until you arrived. It may just be peasant food, but some of us are getting hungry." She turned with a swish of black skirts and descended the stairs imperiously.

    Gavin made a face at her back as she went. Lord Vader choked back another snort of laughter, and then turned to Clarys, his eyes fixed on hers. She hadn't realized until then how blue Lord Vader's eyes were, blue as the cloudless Tatooine sky. "Thank you," he said. "For waiting."

    She looked down, away, feeling her cheeks grow warm and hating her silly blushes. "It was nothing, really."

    "In your world, perhaps. In mine..." He shrugged and gave her a wry smile. "Come, Princess, we'd better go before my sisters makes them start without us." He turned and went downstairs, Gavin dogging at his heels. Clarys stood for a moment, blinking into the setting suns and feeling a bit light-headed. No doubt she'd been out in the heat too long. She took a deep breath to steady herself and followed Lord Vader.
  12. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    LOL Dare I squee?! Yup. =D= I think Clarys is crushing on "Lord Vader." [face_shhh] =D= Gavin seems to be admiring him as well. ;)
    Kahara likes this.
  13. Laine_Snowtrekker

    Laine_Snowtrekker Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Jul 8, 2003
    Hmm. I totally am holding out hope that Lord Vader becomes the Lightbringer he was supposed to be. And somehow, somehow, somehow, Leia comes to the Light. (Maybe she'll meet a smuggler. I don't know, I hold out hope.)

    And Clarys definitely is starting to crush on Luke. Super fun, want to read more.
    Kahara, leiamoody and Nyota's Heart like this.
  14. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Nov 8, 2005
    Very interesting story so far. Can I say that I really admire your capacity to describe scenes in a vivid yet simple way? Wait, I just said that...oh well, you have a great facility with description. You don't go overboard into purple prose territory, but you also supply enough imagery for the reader to actually see the story in the mind's eye. Fantastic work.
    Ewok Poet, Kahara and Nyota's Heart like this.
  15. AngelQueen

    AngelQueen Jedi Master star 4

    Mar 1, 2001
    Wow! Really loving what you've written here so far. You've created a fascinating AU here, with Leia the Uber-Sith and Luke the... Wherever He's Hovering At The Moment. I absolutely love how you've paid such care in crafting the twins' respective personalities in regards to how they were raised. They're a far cry from the Alderanni Princess and the Tatooine Farmboy, that's for sure. Leia in particular in rather terrifying. *shiver*

    I also love Clarys. You've done an amazing job in creating her character, making her a unique person and not just some carbon copy of Canon!Leia. I love how she struggles with her own fears and issues, and how different it makes her from the other characters. Excellent!

    And Ben... Oh poor, dear Ben... [face_worried][face_worried]:_|:_| Vader really did a number on him, but I still find him utterly fascinating. His sufferings have clearly thrust him onto quite a different path in this 'verse. So he's actually viewing various different points in time, which helps him protect the people of Anchorhead from the Raiders, but is also letting him see what has happened/happens/will happen in the wider galaxy. Certainly he's seen the coming of the Lightbringer and She Who Brings The Lightbringer. I wonder what this will all mean...

    I have to admit, I'm looking forward to catching a glimpse of Vader in this 'verse. Here he's had his children in his life, though just how much remains up for debate. In Leia's case, it feels like Palpatine raised her more than her father did - which could be a huge problem if the family starts falling into factions.

    Again, brilliant story! Thank you so much for sharing! :)
    Kahara and Nyota's Heart like this.
  16. Kahara

    Kahara Force Ghost star 4

    Mar 3, 2001
    Excellent depiction of the ghosts of the Lars homestead. Poor Beru and Owen -- and poor Luke, since he really seems to understand on some level. Wonder what that will mean in the future. Really liked Clarys waiting for Luke, and that he was touched that she would care enough to do so. Ugh, Sith Leia. Such a killjoy. :p I'm beginning to ship Luke/Clarys in this 'verse, and can only wonder what will happen when they meet up with Mara again. [face_dunno] Should be interesting.
    Nyota's Heart likes this.
  17. ThreadSketch

    ThreadSketch Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 22, 2013

    Vader is extra creepy killing Beru and expressing love to his son in the same minute. Srsly, Anakin, you're terrible. And that was so bittersweet with Luke preserving Beru's memory. :(

    Honey, you can't resist the power of wuv. Twue wuv.
    Kahara and Nyota's Heart like this.
  18. JadeLotus

    JadeLotus Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Mar 27, 2005
    Evocative scene at the homestead, and lovely aftermath.
    Kahara and Nyota's Heart like this.
  19. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 11, 2014
    Ooookay! I caught up on your last two updates and they were both quite something. The flashback in the Lars homestead -- how we experience it all through infant Luke's POV -- that was gut-wrenching stuff. The following chapter was some much welcome lightness after that, with Clarys and Gavin waiting for Luke to return -- and Gavin was just priceless all along. Am I wrong to think that it's not only Clarys crushing on Luke? I think he's beginning to genuinely like her too.

    One aspect of this story I truly enjoy is the teenage attitude of the protagonists -- with Leia full of adolescent arrogance, Luke trying to find his place and Clarys thinking of herself as a "girl" despite the responsibilities that she has taken on. Gavin being still on the childhood side of life provided the perfect contrast to that.

    Congrats on your nominations for best AU and best OC! They were well deserved [:D]
    Kahara and Nyota's Heart like this.
  20. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    Catching up on some replies....

    I think this is one of the best compliments I've ever received! :) Finding the right level of descriptiveness is something I work hard at, thanks to my memorable Composition 101 professor's admonition to "Write tight!" (20 years later, I still channel his voice when I' m editing my work :D)

    I always wanted to be like Leia, able to hold her own against Vader and banter with handsome scoundrels, but the reality was a lot more like Clarys: nervous, shy and a little socially awkward. She's stronger than she gives herself credit for, though. One of my influences in developing her character has actually been Fluttershy, from My Little Pony [face_blush], in particular her relationship with Discord.

    Vader will appear later in the story. I think that having the twins in his life has helped him hold onto a little more humanity, but he's still got Major Issues, especially where Padme is concerned.
    [face_laugh]. There's an understatement!
    Writing Luke's flashback is the only time I've ever cried at something I was writing. The level of emotion made it simultaneously one of the hardest and easiest scenes to write in this story.

    I think it helps that I have a niece and nephew who are 19 and 16, about the ages that Luke and Clarys are in the story. Gavin also owes a lot to my memories of my nephew about age 10, who would have thought that having a Sith Lord to dinner was the best thing evah even as his parents were freaking out. :D

    Thank you! I have some very tough competition, especially for Best OC ;)
  21. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Jul 31, 2014

    I shall leave you with saying "me too" to leiamoody's comment, as, just like with Long Gone and The Book of Gand, I need some time to...process my thoughts, due to so many things I desperately want to point out, applaud to and quote. This is precisely what I love to read and that Hitler jugend type Leia will be haunting me for days. I may have to sleep with my spear and axe by the bed...wait a second, I don't have those.

    However, just one thing: being from southern Europe, I'm in awe over Vader/Ben revenge.
  22. Findswoman

    Findswoman The Fanfic Mod in Pink star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 27, 2014
    Wow! I just read this through, and I can't believe I never got to know it before! Amazing story, and definitely deserving of its "Best AU" nomination. Your characterization, especially of the Vader twins and Princess Clarys, is superb. Your dark!Leia—wow, just absolute goosebumps—she's the real "iceheart" in this (though it was cool that you brought in Mlle Isard too :D ). I could just picture a young C. Fisher in that role. And your descriptions of her black silk skirts almost make me want to try my hand at making a doll of her (something I have't done in years!).

    Clarys combines the best elements of the eponymous "little princess" in Frances Hodgson Burnett's book of the same name with some lovably human foibles: she's such a perfect foil to both Luke and Leia, in different ways, and I heartily agree with whoever liked the way she was more than just a carbon copy of light!Leia.

    And I love how believably you've charted Luke's progression from haughty and callow to "sadder but wiser"; now that he seems to have made a friend (gasp!), who knows where things will go? [face_thinking] That flashback scene was just riveting—one of my favorite scenes so far.

    Congrats and kudos once again—I'll be keeping an eye on this from now on! ;)

    JEDIFLYSWATTER Jedi Master star 3

    Dec 10, 2004
    I think that the dynamics of Luke's family is in a state of flux. I wonder how his relationship with his father is going to play out. Vader is not going to know what hit him when the questions and accusations start. Great job as always.
  24. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    NightWatcher91, EGKenobi, Priyanka, JEDIFLYSWATTER

    So, those twin annoyances, Darth Real Life and Darth Writer's Block, have plagued me for long enough! DRL seems to have quit throwing sickness at the Baiard household (for the moment) and I managed to kick DWB's butt enough to get half a scene written and edited, so here's a long overdue update:

    Chapter 18

    The trip from Tatooine to Alderaan took nearly four days, even in a top-of-the-line ship like the Tantive IV. Which meant that with eight days round trip, two days on Tatooine, plus the three days they'd spent in the palace on Alderaan, Leia had spent over two weeks in Princess Clarys's company. She hadn't thought it possible for anyone to be that irritatingly cheerful, that painfully naive, that nauseatingly sweet. And if Leia's father hadn't rescued her from Alderaan, that would have been her. The thought of it made her sick.

    Little Princess Starshine was bad enough, but her brother was about to push her over the edge. Leia was beginning to wish she'd never come up with the idea of Luke feigning an interest in the Princess. He had taken his role entirely too seriously. Either he was a better actor than Leia had given him credit for-- and she really doubted that-- or he was actually starting to like the little twit.

    Leia paused outside the crew's common room, where Luke and Princess Clarys were playing another of their interminable games of dejarik. She heard him laugh as if the Princess had said something clever; not kriffing likely, Leia thought with a sneer, unless you found "oh, um..." to be clever conversation. She was glad that the Tantive was returning to Alderaan tonight, and she'd never need to bother with the insipid princess again.

    But first she had some unfinished business to take care of.

    The door to Princess Clarys's state room was open, of course. The princess was too trusting to even think of locking it-- not that it would have stopped Leia if she had. She gave a sniff as looked around around the room, not just a cabin, but a suite with a separate sitting area and even a private observation deck. The conversation circle was decorated with art; a large painting of an Alderaanian landscape and several graceful sculptures were arranged around an oro-wood table and two sofas upholstered with red leather. It was a far cry from the barely adequate quarters Leia had been relegated to.

    She sat down on one of the sofas, smoothing her vine silk skirts, and contemplated what she had discovered on Tatooine. Her brother seemed to have completely forgotten that they'd come on this little jaunt to put a stop to the Princess's rebellious tendencies. While he'd been off slumming with the Princess and her peasant friends, Leia had taken the opportunity to question Huff Darklighter. He hadn't wanted to answer her--hadn't wanted to speak to her at all. Darklighter might have been rich and influential on that backrocket little planet, but he was nothing to her. She was the Lady Vader and she got what she wanted. All she had to do was sift through his thoughts to find the information that she needed.

    It hadn't been particularly hard, either. Not only did the egotistical moisture farmer not have any mental barriers to speak of, thoughts of the plot he was involved in were uppermost in his mind. Darklighter had no love for the Empire and was proud that his Imperial deserter son had been a catalyst for Rebels' latest mad scheme. Huff's thoughts showed Leia an image of his son as a younger, thinner version of himself, complete with ridiculous mustache, dressed in the orange flight suit of an X-wing pilot. After his squadron had narrowly escaped being ambushed by TIE fighters, the younger Darklighter remarked to his commanding officer that he wished they had the Anchorhead Prophet and his uncanny ability to predict the Tusken Raiders' attacks there. Somehow, the story had made its way up the ranks to the Rebel leadership, where some idiot decided that Darklighter's beggar prophet was really a Jedi in hiding.

    And that, Leia thought, was just further proof that the Rebels were a pack of credulous fools. They'd sent word back to Tatooine via young Darklighter, who enlisted his father to convince Old Ben to join their cause, but the stubborn old coot refused to leave Anchorhead. Huff Darklighter was still incensed that the hermit had been unmoved by his status in the community, insisting that he had to wait for the return of the Lightbringer or some such nonsense. Instead of realizing that their prophet was a lunatic, the fools in the Rebellion hit upon the idea of sending Princess Clarys to persuade the old man, as she had recently proven sympathetic to their cause and her late uncle had been a friend of the Jedi during the Clone Wars.

    Leia doubted the crazy old beggar really was a Jedi-- her father and the Inquisitors had wiped out those pathetic weaklings-- though he seemed to have some knowledge of the Force. If he was the Rebellion's only hope they were doomed indeed, though it would be better to get rid of him, so the Rebellion couldn't spin some wild story and turn him into a symbol for their cause.

    She drummed her fingers against the arm of the leather sofa. Fortunately, the Princess hadn't had the chance to speak with Old Ben, but things would have been better if Leia had been able to kill him when she had the chance. She didn't buy Luke's excuse that striking down the "prophet" would have sent Tatooine and Alderaan over to the Rebellion. Tatooine might be under Imperial control, but the real power on the planet was the Hutts. They would hardly care about the death of one grubby human, and if a couple farm boys signed up for the Rebellion, well, it wasn't going to turn the tide of battle.

    As for Old Ben, she would need to get in touch with the local prefect on Tatooine and have him take care of the loose ends for her. A squadron of stormtroopers should be more than sufficient to deal with one old man....and of course the Darklighter brothers. Huff was a Rebel conspirator; Jula hadn't known about his brother's scheme until Huff had foisted it on him, but he hadn't come forward to the proper authorities, either. Something would have to be done with them, but right now she had more pressing concerns.
  25. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    =D= Liked Leia's musings. I must say you have her condescending, icy imperiousness down pat! I have to agree that Luke is not pretending to like Clarys anymore. :)
    Ewok Poet and Kahara like this.