Timeframe: NJO and DN
Characters: Leia Organa (Solo)
Keywords: hours, days, weeks, months, years
Luke sat watching her for hours, hair glowing in the firelight. Her smile was serene and she was happy for the first time, he thought, in a long time.
His friend, his love, his… sister.
He shook his head ruefully, wondering how he had ever missed the truth of that.
He stood. While he hated to upset her peace, the hour was fast approaching when he would leave. She must know that he was not their last hope. There was another.
He was aware that it would ruin her night, at the very least.
“Luke, what is it? What’s wrong?”
You will tell me where your Rebel friends are hiding, Senator.
Gasping, Leia awoke once more to her living nightmare. These dreams were Vader’s doing, she knew that on some level. In each and every one she betrayed her friends, her family, her father. She told Vader what he wanted to know and then she felt peace, knowing she had done the right thing.
Days. She had been in this cell for days, and the dreams had not stopped. She clung to this as proof that she was still staying strong. She was not dooming thousands to death and disgrace.
The battle of Yavin was over. She stayed strong when she needed to be strong and ignored her pain until she could ignore it no longer. That was weeks ago.
She wanted to tell her father about the victory over the monster in the Death Star. She wanted to go home to her friends, but she had no home to retreat to. No home to walk through and grieve the man who raised her.
He died weeks ago, and she was only now allowed to mourn him. It made her guilty beyond words. He deserved more than her leftover time.
Oftentimes, in the midst of the post-Empire economy and government building, she found herself confronted by yet another of the Empire’s atrocities, carefully hidden under mountains of bureaucratic tripe. Most of the time it was Vader’s name attached to the worst of the crimes.
It was months after the destruction of the second Death Star and Luke’s revelation about Vader, and still she could not bring herself to acknowledge him as a relation, even to herself. Every time she tried, she remembered Alderaan and his ministrations in her cell.
It angered her beyond words that Luke could forgive that creature.
“Shut up, Han.”
“Hey, you are the one who insisted on learning Jedi pain mumbo jumbo for this, not me. I offered you drugs.”
Her low growl became a groan and the droid instructed another push. And another. And then, after much fuss, they placed him on her heaving chest. Trembling, she caressed the fuzz on his head and reached out to him with the Force to calm his fear. He never uttered a cry. Recognizing his mother’s Force signature, he peeked at her sleepily with brilliant blue eyes.
Through her tears, she managed a hoarse whisper, “Hello, Anakin.”