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Tripods Are the Most Stable

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In the Falcon, Finn and Poe took turns hugging Rey. After the initial greeting in the middle of the path Rey had created with the rocks she'd pulled from the back exit, Finn had let her go, knowing that they all had to get on the Millennium Falcon. They were the last of the rebellion, the gardeners of the hope Luke had given the galaxy. Twenty people, in one ship, heading for the stars, guardians of the flame of hope.

Leia was grey with pain and exhaustion. Rose was on a stretcher, two medics working to stabilize her. Chewbacca and Rey were piloting the ship away, using the opportunity Luke's sacrifice had given them. Poe and Finn helped the rest find spots to sit, or lay, and rest. The jump to lightspeed was background to getting everyone settled.

Leia caught Poe's hand. "Commander, tell Rey to jump to these coordinates." She handed him a data pad.

"Yes, General," Poe replied, grabbing Finn and pulling him toward the cockpit.

Rey and Chewbacca were working around a bunch of Porgs, Chewbacca growling at them as he piloted. Poe handed Rey the datapad, and she spun, turning to the navigation computer and punching the coordinates in.

"Okay, Chewie, ready when you are," she told him, and Chewie growled and pushed the ship into the jump.

"So," Finn said, leaning against the bulkhead.

"So," Rey agreed. They both looked at Poe.

"So?" Poe added, and their laughter broke the ice. They pulled together, an irresistible force pushing them together. Poe and Rey began comparing notes on starships, droids, and battle tactics. Finn just listened, happy that his two favorite people were getting along.

In the main room, Leia leaned back in her chair and let herself drift. Luke was gone physically, but in spirit...in spirit, he was spreading through the entire universe, his belief in the freedom of people to choose, in the ways of the Force, were spreading through all the worlds, touching anyone that was Force sensitive. She could feel it, too, sliding into the Falcon and touching Rey, Finn, and Poe, among others. She smiled to herself. They were the new trio, the replacements for her, Luke, and Han. They were different, though, and she hoped they were stronger. Their trio had collapsed under Luke's arrogance and Han's bitterness over Ben's loss. A tripod was the strongest arrangement, but if one of the legs buckled, then entire stool would fall. She hoped they could withstand the forces of life arrayed against them.

She let herself rest and let the Force move through her. There was a lot of work to do when they arrived, and too few people to do it with. She would have to stretch her resources to the limit, and for now, she needed to rest. The last few days had drained her, especially after she'd saved herself, and she had to take opportunities where she could.

She smiled to herself. They were in good hands.

~fin