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No Church In The Wild

Chapter Text

We formed a new religion
No sins as long as there’s permission
And deception is the only felony
So never fuck nobody wit’out tellin’ me
Sunglasses and Advil
Last night was mad real
Sun comin’ up, 5 a.m.
I wonder if they got cabs still
Thinkin’ ’bout the girl in all-leopard
Who was rubbin’ the wood like Kiki Shepard
Two tattoos, one read “No Apologies”
The other said “Love is cursed by monogamy”
That’s somethin’ that the pastor don’t preach
That’s somethin’ that a teacher can’t teach
When we die, the money we can’t keep
But we probably spend it all ’cause the pain ain’t cheap
Preach

Human beings in a mob
What's a mob to a king?
What's a king to a god?
What's a god to a non-believer?
Who don't believe in anything?
We make it out alive
All right, all right
No church in the wild

"No Church in the Wild" - Kanye West & Jay-Z

_

Sev

Last night we had received word from the Rebel Alliance team on Alderaan that we would have a report today on the outcome of a battle currently happening to retake the Corellian system from the Republic. I hadn't been able to sleep - my twenty-six-year-old adopted son, Colonel Han Solo Dooku, was leading the forces. He had always been fine, but it didn't stop me from worrying each time he went out there, that this time would be his last.

In anticipation of the news, all of the Je'daii Masters assembled at Kaleth, the Temple of Knowledge, where Yoda was the Temple Master. We were now having brunch in the conference room -

-Yoda
-Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi, the Masters of Qigong Kesh, Temple of Force Skills
-my brother Dougras Inari, Master of Akar Kesh, Temple of Balance
-his husband and wife Gweir Taffyd and Sarenya Calrissian, Masters of Bodhi, Temple of the Arts
-Mace Windu, the Master of Stav Kesh, Temple of Martial Arts
-my other brother Claer Inari, Master of Anil Kesh, Temple of Science
-Sifo-Dyas, the Master of Vur Tepe, the Forge
-Mother Talzin, the Master of Padawan Kesh, the Je'daii Academy for younglings and new adult recruits

and myself and my husband Yan Dooku, a former Count of Serenno and former Jedi Master. We were the Masters of Mahara Kesh, the Temple of Healing, and Yan was Grandmaster of the New Je'daii Order itself, and one of its founders.

Yan was starting to pace, a nervous habit of his. He had reassured me all of last night that our son would be fine - some of his reassurance was with his cock, a most delicious distraction - but I could tell that he was still concerned. He was much more reserved with his affections for others than I was, and he did not spare his family criticism when he felt it was warranted, but he loved our son as fiercely as I did, and if anything happened to Han... my husband wouldn't take it well. We'd been through a lot - the entire reason we were on Tython in the first place was tragedy - and even as the last twelve years had been calm outside of building the Rebel Alliance and watching them go to war against the corrupt, genocidal Republic, it had been a pocket of twelve years in too many marred with tragedy, for both of us. Yan had been against Han joining the Rebellion in the first place, fearing for Han's safety. As our son became a decorated war hero and showed a keen eye for military strategy - he'd applied his prankishness to ways to trick and overcome the enemy - Yan showed that he accepted our son's decision, but losing him was an ever-present fear.

My brother Dougras was worried too. His daughter Ahsoka, who was part-Twi'lek, was Supreme Commander of the Rebel Alliance. She was also out there, and while she'd proven herself a fierce, formidable warrior over the last twelve years of the Rebellion, Dougras was anxious for the same reasons Yan and I were. When it's your children putting themselves in harm's way, you can't help but panic. It's what you do.

But there was a reason why Dougras ran the Temple of Balance, and we did not. I watched as he pulled out a pipe and a bag of Tythan-grown Forceleaf - the most potent weed in the Galaxy. He packed the bowl. Yoda watched expectantly, and Dougras passed the pipe to him first.

We all took a hit; Yan sat back down, and I put an arm around him. When the high started kicking in, I gave him a noogie, which made him bitchface at me. I love that bitchface. I kissed the tip of my bondmate's nose. "You're so cute," I told him.

"I am not cute."

We had been having this same argument in the nearly five decades that we'd been married. We would have this same argument for the next five centuries, probably.

The pipe was in the process of being finished when the holoscreen clicked on, and we saw Ahsoka in her uniform, smiling at us. "We won this round," Ahsoka said.

I stood up and cheered. "YEAH! YEAH, BITCHES! TAKE THAT!" I punched the air.

"Casualty report," Dougras said quietly but with steel in his voice, keeping his optimism in check.

"We sustained some casualties - two ships took damages and we have approximately a hundred wounded to bring back to Tython..."

My face fell and tears burned my eyes. "No..."

"Han is fine," Ahsoka said. "And because of his battle plan, we took out five Republic vessels. We had fewer casualties than we would have. He's finally earned his General stripes."

"Well."

"The troops are on our way back to Tython as we speak. We'll be there in about two days, and will have about six weeks for much needed R&R before we go back to fight some more. We're in the middle of setting up CorSec to patrol the area."

Dougras saluted. "Thank you, Commander."

"You're welcome, Dad." Ahsoka's transmission clicked out.

I started crying. "My baby..."

Yan pulled me onto his lap, his arms tight around me. "He's all right," Yan soothed. "As I told you he would be."

We used the portal Claer had designed to make the jump back to Mahara Kesh, and as soon as we were at our little seaside sanctuary, I told my healers to prepare for new arrivals in two days. The combat medics with the Rebel Alliance would be handling the worst of it, but we were still looking to pull overtime ourselves. I myself made the rounds of the patients we already had, assessing who was ready for discharge and who needed to stay longer.

When that was done, I took a walk out to the beach to meditate, as I often did. Yan was already out there, sitting on a sand dune, contemplating the waves.

I sat with him, and we held each other. There was no need for words.

Eventually, holding turned into kissing, which turned into necking and groping.

"I think some celebration sex is in order," I told my husband, "not that we need an excuse."

Yan and I made our way back to the Temple and our living quarters there, and wasted no time getting undressed. Then I Force threw him onto the bed and pounced him with a little growl, making him laugh.

Yan had stopped aging in his late fifties, so even as he was pushing one hundred, he didn't look it, and a lifetime of Force training had kept him as agile and energetic as a man in his thirties. I was one of the last survivors of the Lannin, a species that could live to be a thousand years old, and was getting close to three hundred. People frequently told me I didn't look a day over twenty-five; it got kind of old to be called "kid" by people who could be my great-great-great-grandchildren. I'd look more mature with a beard, but I can't grow one to save my life.

I rained kisses over Yan's silver beard now - one of my favorite things about his appearance - before our mouths met again. As we kissed, our cocks kissed, hard and ready for each other.

I began kissing down Yan's neck, and made my way to his chest, to tease his nipples with my tongue, lapping and suckling, rubbing them with my fingers as I tongue-bathed the silver man-fur on his chest. Yan had always been a little self-conscious about his body, but I love how fucking male he is, and love worshiping every inch of him. He groaned as I worked on him, making him glisten with my tongue, kissing my way to his perfect washboard stomach, tracing the definition with my tongue, nibbling, kissing, running my fingers over him. I kissed and nibbled at a hip, down a thigh, to worship his man-fur some more, enjoying the way the hair on his legs tickled my face as I tongue-bathed like an animal.

When I noticed his cock leaking precum I couldn't resist, and spent a moment with my nose buried in the silvery nest framing his perfect manhood, breathing in his clean musk, before lapping the head of his cock, licking teasing strokes down his shaft, back up to kiss and lick the head some more, tasting his precum, making a show of trailing streamers with my tongue.

I got his cock nice and wet, before using the Force to grab the bacta we kept in the nightstand - lubricant was expensive to import from off-world, so bacta as lube was pretty standard on Tython. But it not only made things nice and slippery, it had a slight sucking sensation when applied, which intensified pleasure for both the giver and the receiver. I nibbled on Yan's navel as I slicked his cock, and then I came up to kiss him before straddling him and taking him inside me.

Yan held onto me tight as I rode him, slowly at first, and then faster, faster, until the bed was creaking beneath us, slamming against the wall, competing with the sounds of his balls slapping my ass, the wet suctioning sound of his cock pumping in and out of me, our broken cries as we lost ourselves in each other's bodies, and the deliciousness of our bodies together. He felt so good inside me, his curved cock hitting my prostate just right, over and over again, rubbing, rubbing, rubbing inside me, driving me into a sex-crazed frenzy. His hand stroked my cock, knowing just the right speed and rhythm, the right amount of pressure, tightening as my orgasm got closer.

We edged for what felt like forever, needing desperately to come, but never wanting to stop, it felt so good, and not just the delicious friction and tension but that feeling of being so fucking hungry for it, nothing else mattering except our hot, needy fuck. I raked my nails over his chest, making him cry out, and when my nails raked his thighs, he exploded inside me, which triggered my own screaming orgasm, and my ass clenching around him milked him even harder, making him shudder as his climax intensified.

I collapsed onto him, my face landing in some of my cum on his chest, and he cleaned it off me with his tongue, which made us both laugh - once in awhile Yan had playful moments, and I treasured them. He had been so fucking stuffy when we'd met close to five decades ago. The transformation was almost miraculous. I suspected the regular, frequent orgasms had improved his brain chemistry a bit.

"Regular and frequent" was not an understatement. When we had sex, we rarely stopped at just one round. After a few sweet kisses, they turned smoldering, and we were getting hard again, ready for more. The relief that our son was OK, and the reminder of our own mortality - this war was far from over - fueled our passion to new heights, and we did little else for the next two days than fuck each other senseless.

Despite the fact that I was walking funny, I practically ran through the crowd that had gathered to welcome back our troops. When I saw my son in his uniform, the dam broke and I heard the words coming out of me, unable to help myself. "My baby. My baby. My big, brave boy, my baby, oh thank Force my baby's all right."

"MOM. MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMMM."

Even though Yan and I were both men, Han had taken to calling me Mom - Qui and Obi also called me Mom, or Momdad - because I'm a very nurturing person, more maternal than paternal.

I knew I was embarrassing him a little, but Han was smiling just the same. Yan put an arm around Han, as he walked us through the crowd. "It's good to see you," Yan told him.

"Same here." Han gave his father a noogie, which made Yan bitchface, and made me cackle, which made Yan bitchface more. Then Han noogied me.

"We'll be having a celebration dinner for you," Yan informed him.

"Oh, good. I'm fuckin' starvin'. And let me tell you, I could do without eating field rations for awhile."

"You still haven't had it that terribly until you've lived on nutrient stew." Yan cringed.

"Actually I remember that vaguely from almost twenty years ago, when we arrived here."

It was my turn to cringe now too; I would never forget the taste, and would always associate it with genocide and plague. Nutrient stew pretty much tasted like what you would think genocide and plague taste like.

The celebration dinner was a feast at Kaleth, the Temple of Knowledge. It was also a promotion ceremony, for Han and several others who had recently gone up in rank. Han gave a speech, that I cried through, especially when he took turns thanking his parents.

When Han came back to our table, his best friend Lando Calrissian - my brother Dougras's stepson - hugged him, grinning. He took a step back to look Han up and down. "Fresh," Lando said. "Man, I should have joined the Rebel Alliance instead of becoming a Je'daii Ranger. I bet chicks dig the uniform."

"I think Han has a few admirers, in general," my other brother Claer said, smirking.

Han blushed, smiling at Claer, and then it took a minute for the "in general" innuendo to register and he facepalmed. Claer cackled, and Lando did too. Lando winked at me before he sat back down.

And then the Skywalker twins came by, to congratulate Han. "Han, you remember Luke and Leia, don't you?" I prompted.

It had been a couple of years since he'd seen either of them. Han's eyes looked like they were going to fall out of his head. "Holy shit, you grew," Han said, and then I noticed his gaze zeroed in on Leia's chest.

So of course Leia had to hug him. Luke had a habit of following Han around before Han got so busy with the war campaign two years ago - Yan and I suspected Luke had a bit of a crush on Han. The way Luke's face lit up when Han hugged him did nothing to dissuade that suspicion.

Yan and I exchanged amused glances.

Han came back with us to Mahara Kesh, and the room where he'd spent his boyhood and some of his early adulthood. As Yan and I tended to wounded soldiers, Han spent some much-needed down time, getting caught up with Lando, and also getting caught up with Luke Skywalker - which included Leia.

When Han had been home for about two weeks, he, Luke, and Leia went hiking in the forest around Akar Kesh, and when it got to be late and I hadn't seen him I worried - the forests of Tython weren't exactly safe, even for those of us who had lived on Tython for years and knew to take precautions - and when I reached out to Han's presence in the Force, to determine whether or not I'd need to send out a search party, I found he was in the treehouse that Yan had built for him when we'd first settled into Mahara Kesh. You were never too old to play in a treehouse - Han still went there when he had a lot on his mind and needed to think, and Yan and I had sex up there more than a few times after Han grew up and set out on his own; at least one of the walls had an old cum stain you could see if you looked really closely.

I made my way to sit with my son in the treehouse. For a few minutes we said nothing, then I quietly packed a bowl, lit it, and passed the pipe. Han puffed and passed it back to me.

"What's eating you?" I said to him.

"The Skywalkers, if they have their wish." Then Han facepalmed. "Sorry, I have no brain-to-mouth filter."

"I have no idea where you got that from." I chuckled. "None whatsoever."

We smoked some more, and then Han said, "Luke and Leia have their birthday in a month, and Luke asked me to be his Chosen." An Ylleni custom that we had all adopted - on the birthday where one became a legal adult, they were entitled to ask someone older and more experienced to "break them in" sexually.

"...Ah. I see." I puffed and passed. "So what's the problem?"

"Everything."

"Do you not want to be his Chosen? It's an honor he asked you, just like Claer was honored when you asked him." I smirked. "You know I was Lando's Chosen..."

"MMMMMMMMMMMMMMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMM. MOTHER." Han made a Wookiee noise. "I DID NOT NEED TO BE REMINDED OF THAAAAT."

"Sorry." I really wasn't. "So, seriously, honey, why are you so troubled about it?"

"It's just..." He made a vague gesture with his hands. "Fuckin' Skywalkers, man."

I raised an eyebrow. "Yes, that does seem to be what we're discussing."

He made another Wookiee noise. "DAMMIT, MOM."

"Honey, if you make that obvious of an innuendo and not expect me to notice, you either don't know me at all or you're more worried than I thought."

Han sighed, picking at a loose thread on his shirtsleeve. "Yeah, I guess I am. I mean, Luke's the one who asked, but they're both interested in me. I think. Leia hasn't said anything, but I've noticed her looking at me sometimes, and, well, that kinda look's pretty, um, difficult to misinterpret. And honestly the thought of sleeping with them gives me one hell of a boner. I thought it'd be awkward, you know, 'cause of knowing them back when they were running around with skinned knees and jam on their faces, but they've grown up so much since the last time I saw them that I can't really picture them as little kids anymore. Which, yanno, if I'm gonna be fucking them that's probably a good thing. But... there's just so much of them."

I made an encouraging noise, sensing that he was coming to the important part of his ramblings. "How do you mean?"

"Well... it's kinda like if you're standing in front of a window at Anil Kesh, looking down into the Chasm. All that space below you, just dropping into the unknown. And you know there's shit down there you don't want to think about, that you'll go mad or get eaten alive or both, but you can't look away, and the longer you stand there, the more grateful you are that that window can't be opened, because otherwise you'd just... let yourself fall in."

I stroked my chin thoughtfully. "I think your father would phrase his process of falling in love with me much the same way." At Han's annoyed look, I teased, "But of course you have nothing in common."

Han narrowed his eyes. "Did you have to say the l-word?"

I smirked.

Han went on, "All of this would be complicated enough. But then I'm gonna be deployed again in a month... a few days after Luke's first time. Every time I go out there, I wonder - everybody wonders - if I'm coming back. And that just makes things more intense. They were already intense enough."

Han stopped, then, and I collected my thoughts. He waited. My response to him was simple. "What do you want to do?"

"...What?"

"You heard me. If you weren't being deployed in a month, and you had the assurance that everything would be OK, somehow, would you go ahead and, well, take the plunge into Luke's Chasm?"

Han facepalmed. But he nodded.

And then he said, "But that's just it, Mom. I don't have that assurance. I don't know how any of this is going to turn out. And it fucking terrifies me. I can't just go around thinking with my dick... or my heart, for that matter. I have to make decisions based on logic. And facts. People can get hurt otherwise."

He was so much like Yan sometimes I was surprised he wasn't our biological son. "And yet, if you stop fighting it, you might be surprised at what would happen. I mean, if your father had gone through life continuing to be so rational about everything, you wouldn't be here right now. He'd have never found me, and we'd have never found you. The Force had plans for him. You may not have chosen the path of the Je'daii, but you're fooling yourself if you think you can hide from the Force."

"Well, I've got an awfully big shadow in my way." Some of why Han had elected to sign up for the Rebel Alliance when he came of age was the pressure on him from the rest of the Je'daii Order - he was Yan Dooku's son, and people expected him to be another Dooku. I think to some extent Yan himself expected Han would carry on a legacy. So Han became a soldier instead. He still felt self-conscious about his background, and feeling like he somehow "wasn't strong enough" in the Force despite having the midichlorians and the ways his Force-sensitivity still manifested itself when he wasn't trying.

"The ancient Je'daii Masters would say, every darkness has its own light. A shadow cast just adds depth."

"Mom, I know you're stoned, but I really don't want the philosophical metaphysical woo-woo bullshit right now."

"OK, then how about this? Go forth, young man, and tap that ass."

Han made a Wookiee noise. "MMMMMMMMMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMM."

"Right. My bad. Tap that ass and get that pussy."

"MOTHER."

When Han was done facepalming, he looked at me - his face was bright red - and we both cracked up laughing. "Encouraging your kids' sex lives isn't normal -"

"-but in this family, it is." I shrugged. "When you have the Force, is anything really ever normal? And I never saw a purpose to pretending that people don't have sex. Just because you're my son doesn't mean you're innocent. You're a grown man. And you've been influenced enough by me and Yan that I'd be surprised if you weren't as randy as we are -"

"DAMMIT, MOM." But Han was still laughing.

When we calmed down, I gave him a little hug. "Look. I know you're worried about... what's going to happen, what it all means, what it's going to lead to. But I think it's safe to say Luke seriously considered his decision - it's a big deal - and regardless of what the future holds, this is something he needs and wants for right now, this moment in time. And beyond that... sometimes all we can do is trust the Force to get us where we need to go. The Force led your father to Corellia to meet me. We took in you. Then we found our way here, to begin to fight for the Galaxy. It will all work out, somehow."

"But you still worry about things." Han gave me a look. "Like me getting killed out there."

"Well, yeah. I'm your mom. But your dad tries to assure me that things will be fine... even when he's not entirely sure they will be, himself. And you know... here we are." I took a deep breath. "If you decide you truly don't want to be Luke's Chosen, nobody forces anyone to go through with this. Force knows your father had a few offers and he turned them all down. But I'd hate to see you run from something that you want - that all parties are enthusiastically consenting to - because you're overthinking... and because you're afraid to let people close to you. With that part of the equation, I'd suggest you talk to your father. You know he's a little jealous because you come to me with your problems and not him."

"You're better at listening without being judgmental."

I nodded. "I don't think he'd be judgmental about this, though. We both just want you to be happy."

"And that's what I'm worried about." Han shrugged a little. "The Galaxy is at war. Who can be happy?"

"That makes finding what happiness we can more important, not less. And something tells me - the Force, maybe - you're overdue for some happy."

"Then why is it so damn scary and overwhelming?"

"When you first learned to fly, it was like that too."

Han snorted. "As I recall, my first flight on my own made me nearly shit my pants in terror."

"Yeah, love is a lot like that." I grinned and kissed his cheek before he could complain about my use of "the l-word" again. "The difference being, you have another person beside you the whole way who feels just as terrified." I grinned even wider. "Maybe more than one person, if you're lucky."

"MOMMMMMMMMMMMMMM, SERIOUSLY? CAN. YOU. NOT."

I held up my hands. "I'm just saying. You didn't have any experience the first time you flew, right? And now you're one of the best pilots in the Alliance. All it took was practice."

He gave me a look. "Are you seriously comparing flying a ship to sex?"

"You mean that isn't why they call it the cockpit?"

Han stared at me for a second, then started laughing again--full-on, helpless laughter of the sort I hadn't heard from my son in far too long. It lightened my heart to hear him.

"Okay," he said finally, once he'd gotten himself back under control. "I think I know what I'm going to do. I'm still gonna talk to Dad about it first, but..."

Han took a deep breath and set his shoulders, every inch the General once more. He'd lost most of the tension around his eyes, though, and his presence in the Force was far more settled now. "I think... I think I'm gonna say yes."

I leaned in and hugged him again. "Clear skies and fair winds, baby," I whispered. "I think you're going to enjoy learning to spread your wings."

Chapter Text

Leia

 

"Now that's a long face for such a happy occasion."

I blinked, startled. "Oh. Hi, Aunt Sarre. I was just... thinking, I guess."

Sarenya sat down beside me. "Must be pretty serious. You've hardly touched your cake," she said, with a pointed look at my plate. "You don't want to make your Uncle Claer cry, do you?"

I blushed and put a bite of it in my mouth, just to be polite, but kept eating in earnest once the flavor hit my tongue. It was chocolate, of course; it may have been Luke's party, but it was my birthday too, and he'd deferred to my preference in this. There were even fresh strawberries on top.

Any other time, I might have been shocked at the expense involved--really good chocolate wasn't cheap, since it had to come from offworld, and this time of year strawberries only grew in the greenhouses. But this was a special occasion, as I'd been reminded over and over again lately, and no expense had been spared to celebrate the coming of age of the first children born on Tython after its resettlement.

Being the focus of so much attention made me uncomfortable, which was why I'd opted to forgo a joint party and let Luke bear the brunt of it. There were still people coming up to me offering their best wishes and hopes for my future happiness, but it wasn't as bad as it could have been.

I glanced over to where Luke was holding court at the other end of the Akar Kesh plaza, beaming brighter than the afternoon sun, adjusting the wreath of flowers on his head with one hand while keeping a tight grip on Han's with the other.

And that was the other reason I hadn't wanted to participate directly in the day's festivities. Now that we were sixteen, we were officially of age, and by an old Ylleni custom that had gained popularity with the rest of the residents of Tython, we could now choose the person we wanted to have our first sexual experience with. Luke had chosen Han, as he'd been planning to ever since we were twelve and started to realize that there was a practical and intriguing application for all the "bees and trees" talks our mother and Aunt Ahsoka had given us.

My own choice, though, was going to be a little more complicated to turn into a reality.

"What was your first time like, Aunt Sarre?" I asked, following a sudden whim. "Did you have a party, or...?"

Sarenya laughed and shook her head. "No, I decided to be sensible too, and skip the whole thing," she said. "I couldn't stand the thought of everyone attending knowing exactly what I'd be up to in a few hours."

I laughed too, and polished off the last bit of my cake. "Yeah, Han looks a little stunned by all the attention."

"Especially since Sev's been stage-whispering helpful pointers at him for the past half hour. I may have to intervene before your brother loses his Chosen to terminal embarrassment."

I was suddenly very glad indeed that I'd already finished my cake, because otherwise that last bite would have ended up coming out my nose.

"It was even worse when it was Han's coming of age," Sarenya continued. "You were a little too young to understand everything that was going on, of course, but Sev had a lot of... 'useful advice' for his son, which he offered very loudly and enthusiastically. Of course, since Han had asked Claer to be his first, I'm sure Sev was being even more outrageous than usual to mess with his brother, too."

I grinned. "Twice the relatives, double the trolling?"

"Something like that. Claer sounded like a kettle on the boil by the time they finally escaped to a more private venue." Sarenya's eyes twinkled. "Sev had also assisted in decorating the cake, as I recall, with predictable results."

"What did it say?" I asked.

"'CONGRATS ON THE SEX.' I don't think I've ever seen Yan drink quite as much as he did that evening."

Sarenya handed me a handkerchief once I'd finally stopped cackling, and I wiped my streaming eyes.

"So what did you do for your first time, then, if you didn't have a party?"

Sarenya raised an eyebrow at me.

"I don't want, you know, details or anything," I added hastily. "Just... how did you ask the person you'd chosen? And were you nervous that they'd say no?"

She frowned a little, thinking. "I was nervous, yes, but I wasn't worried that he'd refuse me. By the time I finished asking, being turned down was the last thing on my mind."

"Who did you ask?" I breathed.

"He was a bard from up north who came through our neck of the woods a couple times a year. It was his hands that first drew me to him," she mused. "Slender and strong, like the rest of him. And his voice was sweeter than wild honey. Most of the other young people were taken with him, too, but he was painfully shy when he wasn't performing, so everyone else gave up after a while."

"But not you."

"But not me." She fiddled with the end of her long braid, combing her fingers through it again and again as though searching for knots that weren't there. "Gods, I haven't thought of him in years," she breathed. "He was staying on the outskirts of the village, and I slipped into his tent the night before he left. He was so gentle with me, so reverent I nearly cried. And then I did cry when he left the next day, but those were good tears more than anything. The kind that happen when you experience something so beautiful you can't put it into words."

I blinked away tears of my own. "I think I know what you mean."

Sarenya put an arm around my shoulder, squeezing me close for a moment.

"That was our only time together," she continued. "I wasn't in love with him, not really, and I think I was afraid that trying for a repeat of the experience would take the magic out of it. But we still saw each other every year or so, and I think every song he sang was dedicated to me, at least in part."

"Is he still...?"

She shook her head. "He was killed early on in the Jedi 'cleansing' of our world. He was in the north when it started, where the larger cities were--the first places they targeted. Hardly anyone from the northern Kindreds survived, unless they were elsewhere when the Jedi arrived."

I swallowed. "I'm sorry."

Sarenya waved a hand. "It was a long time ago." But the steel in her gaze told me it hadn't been nearly long enough for her to forget her people's suffering.

I shifted uncomfortably, unsure what to say. The topic of the genocide the Jedi had perpetrated was still a painful one for most of Tython's residents. Even more so for the Ylleni and the Lannin, whose lifespans were far longer than the human norm; despite Sarenya's casual dismissal, for them, the loss of their homes and so many of their people might as well have happened yesterday.

I settled for squeezing her hand and offering her a sympathetic smile. She returned the hand-squeeze, with a little snort of laughter.

"Here I am, getting all maudlin on your birthday," she said. "Enough time for that when you young people have gone off to bed. Speaking of which..." Sarenya's eyes gleamed with wicked humor. "You wouldn't be asking me about my first time unless you were curious about your own. Have you got someone in mind, then?"

I looked away, hoping I wasn't blushing as much as it felt like I was. "Maybe," I hedged.

"You know, Lando's still heartbroken you didn't ask him," she said slyly.

I rolled my eyes. "If I didn't know he has at least a dozen people lined up to 'comfort' him, I might almost feel sorry for him."

"And not Han either? From what I've heard, Luke's not the only one who's sweet on him."

Now I was definitely blushing. "No! I mean, yes, but... I don't know. I like him a lot. Maybe even more than a lot," I admitted. "Luke and I even talked about asking him to be my Chosen too, about sharing him tonight."

"Which I notice you're not doing."

"Well, in the end, we decided to have pity on him. Given how overwhelmed he looks at the thought of sleeping with just Luke, both of us at the same time would probably make him explode."

"And I'm sure the Alliance appreciates your selfless dedication to preventing their newest General from perishing in a Skywalker-related freak sexual accident," Sarenya said solemnly. "You'll probably get a medal or something when you join up."

I snorted. "I doubt they give out the Distinguished Service Award for that kind of thing."

Not wanting to kill Han from sexual overload wasn't the only reason I was letting Luke have him all to himself tonight, or even the main reason, but I couldn't tell Sarenya that. I hadn't even told Luke, and we normally told each other everything.

Maybe it would turn out to be nothing, but I got the sense that Han and Luke needed to have this time to themselves, that it would be important somehow in the days and years to come. Like they both needed to store up happy memories to sustain them through... something. I half suspected this feeling I had was the Force trying to get a message across to me, but it was being maddeningly vague with the relevant details.

Probably it was nothing, though. In any case, there wasn't much I could do about it except let my brother have this night with the man we both liked (wanted? loved?), and try not to worry too much about what the future might hold.

Sarenya nudged me. "So who are you thinking of asking, then, if not Han?"

I bit my lip. "Welllllllll, that's the problem. There are a lot of... circumstances in the way, and I don't want anyone to be uncomfortable with this. So I wanted to ask your opinion before I make the official request."

"Oh, now I'm really intrigued," Sarenya said, raising her eyebrows. "Who's the lucky fellow? Or lady? Or gender-unspecified being?"

I told her.

Her eyebrows rose even higher. "Yes, I can see why that might be awkward. But I think maybe, if you go about this the right way..."

My heart gave a sudden thud of anticipation. "Really?"

"Really. I'll even help you, if you want."

The party swirled on around us, but we paid it little attention, caught up in whispered plans and secretive laughter as we plotted the best way to entice my Chosen.

***

Remember, young one,
that no man's touch determines your worth.
A moment of pleasure does not control your destiny.
All beauty, all strength, all honor
are held within you already.
Yet savor this night,
and all nights,
and your many days too,
for the joys of the body
are the song of the Living Force.


Sarenya was singing as her hands wove my hair into the elaborate braids appropriate for a young Ylleni woman just come to her majority. Her people had a song for every occasion; their culture placed great emphasis on the connection between one's voice and one's power in the Force, and indeed her warm, slightly husky voice seemed to be soothing away the last lingering traces of my nervousness.

The room was lit by a multitude of candles, casting everything in a gentle glow. A low table next to the bed was already laid with a selection of finger foods and light wine, so that my Chosen and I wouldn't have to venture far if a different sort of hunger struck during the night. The table also held several vials of various sweet-smelling oils, specially formulated to relax the body and kindle desire.

As if I need help with that, I thought, biting the insides of my cheeks against a fit of the giggles that was threatening to erupt. Force knew I'd been pleasuring myself for the last two years to thoughts of the one who I hoped would consent to share this bed with me; the mere thought of making those imaginings into reality had me slick and aching already.

"There, all done," Sarenya announced. "Let's have a look at you."

Obligingly, I turned towards the full-length mirror in the corner, hoping I didn't look like a girl playing dress-up with her mother's clothes. Sarenya had let me borrow some of her nicer things, and while we were very nearly of a size in most respects, she was also taller than I was, and some creative tucking and folding had had to be done to ensure that the skirt didn't drag on the floor.

I shouldn't have worried, though. Sarenya had an instinct for fashion that rivaled my mother's, and tonight of all nights, making me look like a child was the last thing on her agenda.

"Wow," I whispered, twirling a little to admire the way the russet skirt flared to show off the green embroidery at the hem. "I can't... wow."

She'd braided autumn flowers into my hair, the golds and purples seeming to glow like jewels in the candlelight. Subtle touches of makeup emphasized the color of my lips, drew attention to the brightness of my eyes, brought out the arch of my cheekbones, so that I hardly recognized the half-solemn, half-laughing young woman looking back at me from the mirror.

Before this, I'd rarely bothered with clothing and adornments that weren't entirely practical. But now I saw what Mother meant when she said that these arts, too, could be a powerful weapon in the right hands.

"Wow indeed," Sarenya said, smiling warmly. "You truly look like a princess now."

Impulsively, I hugged her, full of gratitude too deep to express. "Thank you," I said. "For... for everything. The clothes, the room, the... well, you know."

She laughed. "I know. And it's my pleasure to share. Gods know I've watched my other man serve as Chosen to plenty of people by now." A lazy smile played over her lips. "Our lovemaking afterwards is always... well, more than worth his absence for a night."

Sobering then, she took my face in her hands and kissed me gently, first on one cheek and then the other. And then, to my astonishment, once more on the mouth.

"For luck," she said. "Although I hardly expect you'll need it. And after tonight, if you ever want to taste the ways two women can please each other..."

For answer, I kissed her back, more lingeringly. "I'd like that," I said after I'd pulled away, my lips still not much more than a breath from hers and my imagination fired with the possibilities. Sweet Force, everything seemed to be conspiring against me tonight; I was already wetter than I could ever remember being, and the main event hadn't even started yet.

Sarenya smiled again, as though she knew perfectly well what was going on inside my panties. "Soon then. You can come visit me at Bodhi the next time you have a free evening, and I'll teach you some interesting new art forms."

I rolled my eyes. "Your jokes are even worse than Uncle Sev's sometimes."

She cackled. "Bad jokes or not, you didn't say no," she pointed out.

Before I could form a retort, she'd slipped out of the room to fetch my Chosen, still laughing.

Alone for the first time that evening, I sat down on the edge of the bed, suddenly overwhelmed. What was I thinking? I could have just waited and had a more casual first time with Han or someone later, but no, despite what I'd told everyone, I had to have the pomp and circumstance, didn't I--even if the ceremony itself wasn't common knowledge.

As for the one I'd set my heart (and loins) on... Well, no one else had ever asked him to be their Chosen, as far as I knew. Considering his past, it wasn't hard to see why. And if anyone was interested despite that, they were probably terrified that Sarenya would skin them alive for even looking at him wrong. Ylleni women could be fierce as dragons when protecting their families, and she was no exception.

I didn't have long to work myself into knots over these thoughts, however. Only a few minutes after Sarenya had left, I could hear her voice outside the door again--not clearly enough to make out what she was saying, but the tone was bright, almost coaxing.

Another voice answered her: deeper, less effusive. But not reluctant, I thought.

My heart hammered in my chest as I strained to make out words. This is really happening, I thought. After all this time, it's really happening.

I nearly jumped out of my skin when the door opened. The figure that entered was blindfolded, being pushed along by Sarenya, who had a massive grin on her face as she urged him into the room.

"Sarenya, I'm really not in the mood for anything fancy tonight," he said. "Especially the kind of fancy that involves blindfolds. I thought you said--"

"You'll like this surprise, I promise," she interrupted. "And if you don't, you can complain to me about it for as long as you like tomorrow."

With one last shove of her companion into the room, and a cheerful "Have fun!" and a kiss blown in my direction, Sarenya breezed back out again, closing the door firmly behind her.

The blindfolded man made a small noise of surprise, half turning towards the direction she'd gone before turning back to the center of the room.

"Hello?" he said. "Gweir, if that's you, I swear--"

I stood up and padded over to him, my bare feet making no sound on the intricately woven rugs. Reaching up, I slipped the cloth off his eyes.

"Hello, Uncle," I said.

He stared at me. "Leia? Why... What are you doing in my room? I'm not..."

He glanced around the room, then back at me, seeming to truly take in my appearance. His eyes widened, darting again over the candles, the fresh linens and flower petals on the bed, the table standing ready with food and oils.

"Oh," he said. "Sarenya wasn't kidding. This really is a surprise."

Not quite sure how to respond to that, I took refuge in formality. Taking his hands in my own, I spoke the traditional words.

"Dougras Inari, on this day, I have reached my majority and am now entitled to choose the one I wish to initiate me into the pleasures of lovemaking. It would give me great joy if you would consent to be my Chosen and share my bed with me tonight."

He looked almost shell-shocked by the time I finished speaking. My heart was pounding in my throat as he stared at me; I was certain this was the end of all my fantasies, that he'd refuse me outright, send me back to my mother, and I'd have to spend the night alone but for the echoes of pleasure in the Force from my brother's first night with Han--

"Technically speaking, it's my bed," Dougras said at last, slowly, interrupting my frantic thoughts. "But that hardly matters."

Turning my hands palm-up, he lifted them and brushed his lips over the center of each one, then leaned down to press a kiss to my mouth. He lingered far longer than tradition called for, though his mouth remained closed, soft and undemanding against my own.

Finally, he pulled away, resting his forehead against mine. "Leia Skywalker, you honor me with your request," he whispered. "It would give me great joy to be your Chosen and share your bed with you tonight." Then he grinned, eyes dancing as he deviated from the rote words. "And more nights than this, if you'd like."

"Oh! I hadn't thought..." I really hadn't thought beyond that night, but the idea of continuing the liaison was appealing. More than appealing.

"Hadn't thought I'd want you that way?"

I nodded.

"Force, Leia, I've been able to feel you pleasuring yourself after every one of our lessons. This past year has been... extremely hard, shall we say." He grinned again. "In every sense of the word."

My face heated up; I hid it in my hands. "Oh fuck. Am I really that bad at shielding?"

"You've gotten better at it," Dougras soothed, gently pulling my hands away from my face and leaning in to steal another kiss. "I can only really feel you when I'm not distracted by something else. But lately, I have to admit I've been minimizing those distractions as much as I can."

I blushed harder, but for a different reason this time. Force, if I thought I'd been wet before...

"Fuck, you're beautiful," he whispered.

"Likewise," I said, lifting a hand to trace the line of his jaw.

He groaned and kissed me again, finally slipping his tongue into my mouth to meet my own. I think I made a sound at that first electric contact, something halfway between a whimper and a moan, but I couldn't bring myself to care whether it sounded pathetic or not because I was pressed up against the entire length of his body all of a sudden, could feel how badly he wanted me--not just the obvious bulge of his erection, but his emotions brushing up against mine through our training bond.

"Oh Force, Uncle," I gasped, pulling away just enough to be able to look at him. "You're... It's not just about sex, is it. You want..."

"Only as much as you're willing to give me," Dougras said. "But you should know I don't ever have sex with anyone unless I care about them in some way. And I do care about you, Leia. Deeply. Maybe more than I should."

I swallowed. "This is... well, it's way more than I thought I'd be getting tonight."

He nodded. "I understand. And you don't have to decide on anything right now. We can just enjoy being together, and save all the heavy stuff for sometime when we're not both ready to come in our pants."

I snorted. "You're probably the only person I know who can combine that level of both feelings and dorkiness."

"It's my greatest talent." He grinned. "Well, that and a certain something I can do with my tongue."

Oh fuck. "Bed. Now."

I grabbed the front of his shirt and pulled him towards the bed; he laughed and followed, stealing kisses every step of the way.

By the time we were sitting together on the bed, though, he had become serious once more.

"Before we go any further, I should really ask," Dougras said. "Do you have any previous experience with this kind of thing at all? I don't want to make you uncomfortable, and you don't have to tell me who it was with if you don't want to, but I want to make this good for you, and it'd help to have as much information as possible about where you're coming from."

"Well," I hedged, choosing to ignore the blatant innuendo. "I've done some... things. With Luke. We've never... um. I mean, we both wanted our actual first time to be with someone who knows what they're doing. But we've kissed, and touched each other pretty much everywhere, and watched each other get off a bunch of times. So I already know what a cock looks like and how it works, so you don't have to worry about me fainting when you take your pants off or anything."

"You might anyway," Dougras said, waggling his eyebrows. "I've been told I'm pretty impressive in that department."

I rolled my eyes. "Dammit, Uncle Doogie..."

He held his hands up in a pacifying gesture. "Okay, okay, I won't joke about Doogie Junior again. ...Much."

Dougras sobered then, and reached over to caress my cheek.

"I hope you know I meant what I said, about wanting to make this good for you," he said. "If anything we do tonight is uncomfortable or doesn't feel right, no matter what the reason is, let me know, and we can try something else. Or even stop altogether, if that's what you need. Tonight is for you."

I nodded, almost too overcome with feelings to speak. "It's all good so far," I whispered.

I don't know which of us made the first move then, but we were in each other's arms again, kissing like our lives depended on it. He made little noises when I slid my tongue against his, almost purring as I savored the taste of him.

Somehow, in the midst of that, we managed to pull our shirts off without breaking contact. I'd seen Dougras shirtless before in the course of my Je'daii apprenticeship, of course, but always in a training context. Although I'd definitely used those instances as staples in my various fantasies. Now, though, being allowed to touch, to explore, was better than anything I could have imagined.

He whined when I brushed my fingers through the hair on his chest and found his nipple, teasing it into a hard peak. "Fuck, Leia, oh fuck, do that again..."

I obliged, lifting my other hand to give his other nipple the same attention, fascinated by his reactions.

"Luke isn't nearly this sensitive," I remarked.

"It's not--oh FUCKFUCKFUCK, yes, can you, oh please... not generally considered polite to talk about your other lovers while you're in bed with someone else. But if you keep doing that thing with your thumbs, I won't complain..."

More kisses. More touching, slow and gentle, then fevered and almost rough by turns, and all of it so unbearably good I could scarcely think. The rest of our clothes came off at some point, and I nearly came then and there when he slipped a hand between my legs.

"Oh sweet holy Force," he groaned. "How can you be this wet already?"

It was my turn to gasp and whimper as he slid a finger inside me, then another, slowly circling my clit with his thumb.

"Uncle, Doogie, please..."

"What is it, love?" he whispered.

"I want... more," I said fiercely. "Want you. Want everything. Please..."

"Hush," he soothed me, his fingers still working gently. "We have all night. And more."

He kissed me then, trailing his mouth down my neck, pausing at my breasts to lick and suckle each of them thoroughly before moving on, down the slight curve of my belly, until--

"FUCK! How can you--what--unhhhhhhh..."

"I'll take that as a compliment," he said, lifting his head to give me a teasing grin. "You can put your legs on my shoulders if you like; I'm planning to be here for a while, so it'll make things easier for both of us. And I, um, like having my hair pulled a little, if you need something to hang onto."

"Fuck," I said again, with extra feeling this time, threading my fingers through his green-streaked dark hair as he went back to work in earnest.

Somehow, I didn't die from the experience, but it was a near thing. I lost count of how many times I climaxed from his mouth and fingers alone; after a certain point, it all felt like one long, almost unbearable wave of pleasure that ebbed and crested again and again and again until I was sobbing and boneless and begging for it never to end.

Eventually, though, he gentled me through one last orgasm, nuzzling my clit as the final sparks of ecstasy blazed through me, leaving me relaxed and glowing in their wake.

Literally glowing, I realized. I giggled as I lifted my hands away from Dougras's hair.

"I'm all shiny," I said.

"Yes you are," he said, sliding back up to take me in his arms again.

I leaned in and kissed him, enjoying the flavor of my juices lingering on his tongue.

"That was better than I could possibly have imagined," I whispered.

"For me too," Dougras said. "Just one question, though."

"Hmm?"

"...Who the fuck is Dennis?"

"No idea."

"So I shouldn't be worried about competition, then? I mean, you did call me by his name and all. What if there really is some guy named Dennis running around out there who looks just like me and enjoys giving oral as much as I do?"

I kissed him again, thoroughly. We were both smiling by the time we pulled apart.

"Dougras, there's no one quite like you anywhere."

That kiss inevitably led to more kisses, and although I'd have sworn earlier that I was completely done in for the night, it didn't take long before I was rubbing myself against his leg, desperate for more contact, more friction, more... well, just more in general.

"Dougras, can we...?" I murmured. "I mean, I'd like..."

"Anything," he said, nipping at my lower lip. "Anything you want."

I swallowed and wrapped a hesitant hand around his cock, gauging its girth. It was one thing to deal with an erection in the context of kissing and heavy petting, but contemplating anything more than that was a little daunting. But I had trusted Dougras enough to make him my Chosen, and he had promised to make this night good for me, no matter what we did together.

"I think... I want you inside me. Can we do that?"

He kissed me again, soft and sweet and tender.

"Yes," he said. "Oh yes, we can definitely do that."

And by the Force, we did. Eventually.

By the time he finally slid fully into me, I was so relaxed, so ready, that there wasn't even a hint of pain or discomfort, only pleasure, and a sense of completeness so profound I nearly cried from the immensity of it.

Dougras must have seen something of this in my face, because he stopped moving and gave me a worried look.

"Too much? We can always stop if you want, try again later."

I shook my head, and wrapped my legs more firmly around him. "If you stop now, I think I'll have to kill you," I gasped.

"Oh, thank fuck," he groaned, starting to move again. "If I had to stop now, I think I might die before you have a chance to kill me."

At some point, I became aware of Luke, in a room in another part of Akar Kesh, entangled in passion with his own Chosen. His consciousness brushed against mine, warm and loving and familiar, pulling me close in the Force in the way we'd always shared since before our birth.

And suddenly I could feel Luke's pleasure in penetrating his lover, even as I was penetrated by my own. He showed me firsthand the primal joy of sinking himself deep into tight, silken heat, while I shared with him the bliss of cradling my Chosen within the compass of my hips as we rocked slowly towards our shared pleasure.

I could feel Han distantly, as well, reaching curiously towards me through my connection to Luke. Our minds brushed each other, parted, flitted close again. He didn't try to intrude on my intimacy with Dougras, but I could sense his interest in me, the possibility of something more if I wanted it too. I pushed him away from me gently, sending him the equivalent of a kiss on the cheek in the Force. Later, I told him. Soon.

Also gently, I let go of my conscious connection to Luke; we parted ways as easily as the tide retreating from the shore, though we were of course always aware of each other on some level, no matter what.

"Everything still all right?" Dougras asked, brushing his fingers over my cheek. My little sojourn with Luke couldn't have lasted longer than a couple of seconds, at most, but Dougras had definitely noticed the lapse in my attention.

I nodded, and pulled him down for a kiss.

"Better than all right. Perfect."

***

The next morning, Luke and I appeared at the communal breakfast table with our respective Chosens in tow. Luke grinned from ear to ear as he hugged me.

"So how was it?" he asked.

"Amazing," I said. "You?"

He slanted a glance over to where Han was shifting in his seat on the bench, as though he couldn't quite get comfortable no matter how he sat. I also noticed a rather impressive bite mark on Han's neck, just where the collar of his shirt couldn't quite cover it.

"So amazing."

Luke and I sat next to each other with our fingers entwined as we ate, sandwiched cozily between Dougras and Han. None of us had slept much the night before, but that didn't seem to matter.

When our mother and Aunt Ahsoka entered the room, neither of them noticed us right away. Then Ahsoka saw Dougras with his arm draped over me, and the blissed-out look that must have been on my face, and made a noise like a Wookiee with a head cold.

"Seriously, Dad?"

"Seriously."

"Couldn't you have, like, had breakfast in your room instead?"

"But it's traditional for the other party-goers to wish the celebrant and their Chosen well the next morning," Dougras said, all innocence, though there was no mistaking the mischievous gleam in his eye. "We couldn't break with tradition!"

"YES YOU COULD. I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR... YOUR SEXCAPADES, DAD. ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY INVOLVE MY WIFE'S KIDS."

"Well, I think it's a fine choice Leia made," Mother said, tweaking one of Ahsoka's lekku. "Dougras is a respected Temple Master, and is certainly experienced enough to make sure she enjoyed herself last night." She looked over at me. "And you did enjoy yourself, didn't you, dear?"

I leered at Dougras. "Oh, yes. Especially that thing he does with his tongue."

Aunt Ahsoka's Wookiee noises intensified.

Mother winked at me. We didn't always get along, but her sense of humor and mine were similar enough to give us a good bit of common ground, even when other parts of our relationship were less than ideal. And now it felt like she was taking it once step further, including me in the adult banter as an equal. It was a good feeling.

I sighed in contentment and snuggled closer to Dougras, who pressed a kiss to the top of my head and tightened his arm around me. Luke squeezed my hand, even as he continued his heated debate with Han about the durability of various brands of hyperdrive components.

I was sixteen at last, and if the past day was any indication of the rest of it, this would be a very good year indeed.

Chapter Text

Han

"I thought we were never going to get out of there."

Luke was grinning as he said it - his coming of age party had been awkward for sure, but he hadn't been traumatized out of doing what we were going to do later.

Despite my parents' best attempts.

"Yeah, seriously." I ran a nervous hand through my hair. "If I never have to do another one of these things it'll be too soon."

"I take it yours was as bad?"

"It was worse." I pinched the bridge of my nose, remembering. "Claer made me a cake, and Mom took the liberties of frosting CONGRATS ON THE SEX on it. Then giving me very loud helpful tips throughout the party. Like for example telling me if I hadn't gone to the toilet tonight I was gonna need an enema first." I did an imitation of my mom. "Because it'll clean you out there real good." And then I imitated my father's deep voice and posh Coruscanti accent. "Really well." And then imitating my father's face after he realized correcting Mom's grammar (once again) had meant he'd just participated in "these shenanigans."

Luke covered his face with both his hands, and I watched as he shook with silent laughter. When he uncovered his face it was bright red and there were tears streaming from his eyes. I couldn't help laughing with him.

"Well, Sev is a doctor," Luke said.

"Yeah. But he could have offered that 'medical advice' when there weren't, like, dozens of people there."

Luke snorted, which was dorky and adorable at the same time, and my face burned - he was so damn cute. My dick was wanting to get on with it, but my stomach flipflops wanted me to linger a bit longer before making the first move. So we were drinking wine in a guest suite at Akar Kesh, eating leftover cake.

"What was even worse was Lando's ceremony, because he asked Mom to be his Chosen, and he actually accepted. I couldn't believe it. It was the first and only time Mom has ever been anyone's Chosen, so it was a pretty big deal."

"I'm sure Lando thought he himself was a pretty big deal."

"Mom helpfully informed me later that he was, in fact, a pretty big deal... but not quite as big as my father." I facepalmed, and Luke doubled over, wheezing.

When Luke calmed down, he said, "So how did that even happen? Your mom seems pretty monogamous with your dad."

"For the most part, yes. Lando's plan was to impress my mom by wearing a cape, like Dad does. Except Lando decided his cape needed to be even more awesome so he commissioned the tailors of Bodhi to make him a gold cape. This wasn't exactly cheap, considering that kind of cloth has to be imported. When Mom finished laughing his ass off at Lando going to that extreme to try to get down his pants, he accepted Lando's offer. Especially when he realized the trolling potential. Lando loves reminding me he did my mom. All these years later and he still brings it up somehow every time I fucking see him."

"I take it his ceremony was pretty special?"

"Oh FORCE." I cringed. "All the Lannin kept yelling KING IN THE NORTH! at Mom. We might not be on Corellia anymore, but..."

"...the North remembers." Luke nodded; the history of the genocides, and how most of Tython's population had gotten here, was something they taught at Padawan Kesh.

I polished off half a glass of wine and poured another. I didn't want to be so drunk that I couldn't perform, but I definitely needed to take some of the edge off. "So, did Mom have any helpful tips for you? I noticed he whispered at you on your way out."

"Yeah, he said 'Stick him with the pointy end.'"

I had chosen that moment to sip my wine, and wound up spitting it out... all over Luke. And it was red wine. "Oh, dammit." Without thinking about it I used the Force to pull a towel over and began frantically rubbing at his clothes... not that it was going to do a damn thing. "Shit." They were formal dress clothes, too.

"It's OK."

"No, it's not -"

"No, really, it's OK." Luke stood up, and began taking off his shirt. As hot as my face was now, I couldn't take my eyes off him. I knew he did a lot of intense training with Master Kenobi but it was one thing to know that and another thing to see it - he had great definition in his pecs and abs.

Luke gave me a cocky little smirk when his shirt was off. "Like what you see?"

I nodded, not able to make words.

"I've got some wine on my pants too. Oops." And then Luke dropped trou, and I could see the tent in his briefs. It was impressive.

Now I could make a word. "Fuck."

And before I knew what was happening, Luke used the Force to slam me up against the wall and he kissed me hard and hungry. My hands reached around to cup his perfect ass, and then slid up his back, making him shiver at the play of my fingers on his bare skin. I shivered too, letting out a moan when he started kissing my neck... pressing that hard-on against me. I was fully erect now too, and one of his hands reached down to rub the bulge in my pants.

He kissed me again, making my head spin, and I gasped out, "We should soak your clothes..." And felt like an idiot. Yes, it would stain if we didn't but now? Seriously? My father and I could be like night and day sometimes but his fastidiousness had made an imprint on me.

Luke's teeth made an imprint in my neck. "Fuck clothes." With that, he ripped my own shirt off - tore the fabric with his hands - and after undoing my belt he did the same with my pants. We were both in our underwear now, and he reached down the waistband of mine to pull my cock out, stroking it slowly.

I couldn't think anymore. Just kiss. Just run my hands over every available inch of his gorgeous body, my young golden stud, glorious in his confidence - I could feel through the Force that he'd been waiting for this for a long time now, had been rehearsing it in his mind. It was flattering. It was also a little scary. I'd been used to male and female attention since I'd come of age, and I'd fucked around a bit, but it was one thing to be someone's port in a storm for one night, and another to be the object of someone's lust and admiration for years. And the more logical, cautious part of me would tell me to slow the fuck down and think about this, but I was too horny and we were making our way towards the bed.

Luke pushed me down, and climbed over me, his hands pulling my briefs off before he undid his own. As he leaned in to kiss me, he grasped both our cocks in his fist, stroking them. It wasn't the first time anyone had done that to me or even the hundredth, but there was a spark that I'd only ever felt previously with Claer. I moaned into the kiss and Luke did too. Our eyes met, and the utter worship I saw in his eyes made me melt.

"Fuck me," I breathed.

"Hnnng." I knew Luke liked that idea. "Not yet." He started kissing down my neck again, making me crazy. "I want to enjoy this body of yours."

"Oh, shit." He let go of our cocks and now our cocks were rubbing together, teasing us both... as he kissed his way over my shoulder, licked down to my nipple, and then licked around it, slowly. "Fuck. Fuck..."

"Like that?" Luke smiled up at me, before taking a few slow, deliberate, teasing licks with his tongue.

"Fuck." I was writhing now. My nipples were a direct line to my cock, and it was almost like he knew that somehow.

Luke continued to lick at my nipple as his fingers played through my chest hair, finding their way to rub the other one. When Luke drew my nipple into his mouth, I arched to him, and cried out as he purred "Mmmmmm", suckling hard. He gave a little tug with his teeth and then soothed with his tongue before kissing and licking across my chest to the other, while his fingers stroked and pinched at the nipple he'd just left, slick with his saliva.

He went back and forth between them a few times - I lost count, getting crazier and crazier - and then Luke kissed and licked his way down my torso, over my abs. Kissed and licked down one side to my hip, to kiss and nibble on it, then over the thigh. As Luke kissed my inner thigh, I made inhuman noises, noises I'd be embarrassed about if I weren't too horny to care.

It had never been like this with anyone but Claer. It was always quick, like scratching an itch. Luke taking his time with me, readying me for him, suggested that his feelings went deeper than lust. That this meant something to him.

Not that there wasn't lust there, heat in his eyes. He was reveling in the way he made me lose control, now that he was working on my other thigh. He licked at the seam of my crotch, and back up to my navel, plunging his tongue inside. I never knew I was so sensitive there but I was, whining like a bitch in heat as he tongue-fucked my belly. And at last, he took a lick at the head of my cock, which was leaking so much precum now. I gasped, and clutched his head.

"You've got a beautiful cock," Luke said.

I didn't know what to say. "Thanks" sounded like a really stupid response. Not that I knew what intelligence even was, lost in pure animal need as he took slow licks around the head, and then down the shaft and up again.

"You're even bigger than in my fantasies." Luke smiled before he made a show of collecting streamers of precum with his tongue. "And you taste so good." With that he took just the head of my cock in his mouth and sucked it like it was a delicious piece of candy. "Mmmmmm."

"Luke, dammit..." My heart was hammering in my ears, and my hands were trembling as my fingers ran through his hair, played over his nape, making him shiver. "Please..."

"Please what?" Luke licked the slit of my cock, lapped at it, and when his tongue lashed the frenum I thought for a minute I was going to die.

"Fuck me. Please."

"Isn't tonight about me?" Luke gave me that smug, smartassed little smile that was so infuriatingly attractive. "And what I want?"

"Fuck..."

"What I want is to savor you." With that, he licked back down my shaft, and took my balls into his mouth, swirling his tongue around as much as he could. It felt incredible. It was utterly delicious torture, my balls feeling like they were going to explode as he worked on them.

When I couldn't take any more, he took my balls out of his mouth and just licked them. Tongue-bathed them. That was just as intense, and now my nails were digging in his shoulders, incoherent babble streaming from my mouth. Luke laughed softly between licks, high on the power trip of wrecking me.

His ultimate moment of power was when he plunged his tongue into my ass. He'd obviously done his research about how to prepare a bottom. And obviously some of that "research" had been with his cock out, stroking himself to fantasies about doing this to me, which I saw mental flashes of as he worked his tongue inside of me, fucking that sweet spot, making me tear up with frustration, desire, and... emotion. He'd wanted this so badly. He wanted me. This wasn't just about the fun of turning me into a howling, whimpering mess that was entirely under his spell; this was an act of worship for him. He was tasting the most intimate part of me, and doing it with awe.

His hands took mine, and squeezed.

"Please," I rasped. "I need you inside of me."

"I am inside of you."

You little shit. "You know what I mean, Luke."

He took a few more licks and then I cried out, "Luke, please. Luke."

The use of his name, and the urgency in his voice, made his eyebrows go up a little. His gaze locked with mine, and with a reluctant little groan he pulled back. He kissed his way up my cock, lapping up the trailing precum with long, slow licks, and then kissed and nibbled his way up my torso to claim my mouth. I reached for his cock, which was plenty wet from his own precum, and rubbed it against mine, thoroughly slicking it with my precum. But as slick as he was, I hadn't been fucked in awhile and we were going to need more lube. I used the Force to reach for the jar of lube I'd brought with me, and when I got some on my hand, I rubbed it onto his cock.

"Ohhh, that's cold," Luke gasped.

"It warms up." I handed him the jar. "Here. I need you to get me ready."

Luke looked at the jar, and then he looked at my spread hole, and there was a moment of hesitation - I picked up in the Force that he was nervous about hurting me - but his horniness won out and he stuck his fingers in the jar and then his slick fingers were in my ass. He found that magic spot right away, rubbing it in lazy circles with one finger, then two, then three, until I was fucking his fingers, moaning between urgent kisses.

When he started kissing my neck I almost came right then. My nails raked his back and he couldn't help himself any longer. He pushed into me. It was tight, and there was that initial burn as I stretched to accommodate him... but when he took his first thrust, pulling back, then pushing forth, he hit that spot just right and I moaned. Encouraged by that moan, Luke drove into me.

"Am I hurting you?" Luke rasped.

"No. Fuck me hard. Get it."

I grabbed his hips and held on for dear life as the beast in him came out to play. I'd sparred with Luke enough times to know he was a powerhouse, and my mom had said more than once that a person fucks like they fight, but it was one thing to see him wield a lightsaber and another thing for his living lightsaber to be pounding away in my ass. I was going to be sore tomorrow... and I loved every minute of it. The pressure and friction built inside of me, deeper and higher, and when he reached down to take my cock into his hand and work it in time with his thrusts it was so, so good. I dug my nails in his back.

"Luke. Luke. Oh, fuck..."

He gave a little growl and bit my neck. That drove me wild, enough to prop my legs up on his shoulders and work my hips, fucking back at him. The sound and sensation of his balls slapping my ass got me right on that edge, ready to fly off...

...and I looked up at him, and for a few seconds he seemed distracted. And then I realized he was tuning in to his Force bond with his sister... and then I felt it, too. She was with my uncle Dougras. He was taking it much more slowly and gently with her - very sensual. I could feel her skin react to the brush of his fingertips, and I wondered, briefly, what it would be like to do that to her, to touch her the same way.

She felt me feeling her, and there was warmth, but also a little nudge out of her head. Soon.

And then Luke's attention was riveted on me once more, and he kissed me as hard as anyone ever had. His hand stroked furiously, and I whimpered, desperate to come but never wanting him to stop, his cock rubbing my sweet spot felt so fucking good...

"Luke." I came hard, with a little sob I would have been embarrassed about if the orgasm wasn't so fucking intense. I watched as I erupted all over his chest, and his own face contorting with climax was the last thing I saw before my eyes rolled and everything went bright. I could feel him coming inside me, and I could feel him. Our Force signatures, intersecting, combining.

It was awesome. And I don't just mean that it was great, but I mean it in the original sense of the word - awe-inspiring. Downright fucking terrifying.

My own first time had been with my uncle Claer, who I'd idolized since I was a kid, and just like it had been some years since I'd seen Luke and he was a man now, it was like that with me and Claer when I went to Padawan Kesh. I was no longer a boy to him, but an attractive man and one who wanted him, strange as he was, the scientist who lived on the Chasm and kept to himself much of the time. Claer and I continued to be occasional lovers over the years, and as much as I could, I had feelings for him, even though his work came first for him, and I'd been married to the Rebel Alliance for some years now. Claer wasn't the jealous type - Lannin weren't, as a rule - and he knew I had a string of one-night-stands and sometimes-fuckbuddies and didn't care.

Claer had, to this point, been my only Force-sensitive lover. All of those random hookups I'd had over the last several years had been fulfilling a biological need only. It was satisfying physically, because of the release, but it always felt cold and empty afterwards. When I was with Claer, it felt different, because of our Force bond. It felt warm and safe and sweet. Our afterglow was my happy place.

This felt like that, except even more intense, and it scared the shit out of me. It was like some switch had been turned on in my brain and I could feel what Luke was feeling, physically and emotionally; to some extent I could see/hear his thoughts. And I knew that it was the same for him as well, and he was quietly marvelling at it too. He was used to it with his sister, since she was his twin and all; he was used to it with Master Kenobi as his Je'daii Master. This was something entirely new and different.

It changed the game. This wasn't just him losing his virginity to some guy he lusted for, and me accepting the offer because this young dude was pretty hot.

There were, like, feelings and shit now.

Part of me wanted to run, but most of me wanted to just lay like this, tangled up with him, forever. Our hearts beating in the same rhythm. Everything was shiny. I felt like we were floating. One of the best things about this was I could forget, for a little while, about the war out there. I'd been really enthusiastic about signing up for the Rebellion as soon as I was old enough, after what I'd seen as a kid, but almost a decade later that enthusiasm had worn thin as I'd seen too much and had escaped with my life by a thread too many times. I could rest, here and now, and that was exactly what I did.

Or at least for a few minutes. Luke was already getting hard again, feeling my naked body against his. He started nuzzling my neck, and then kissing it. I groaned - my neck was one of my weak spots. He felt my cock stirring and stroked it slowly.

"I suppose I shouldn't be surprised you're this horny," I said.

Luke's response was just to kiss me, and he started moving inside me again, slower this time. Slow, like the tides. Waves of emotion crashing over both of us, the water of tears in my eyes.

I didn't have the courage to say those three words then - I couldn't believe that was even what I was feeling - but they were expressed a thousand little ways, through every touch, every kiss, every thrust, every moan and sigh. We made love three more times before dawn broke, and got a couple hours of sleep before a droid informed us breakfast was ready. I didn't want to get up, but Luke nagged me about eating breakfast.

"Master Kenobi says it's the most important meal of the day."

He sounded so boyish that it was almost ridiculous. I shook my head at him, laughing, as I pulled my clothes on.

_

I would have stayed with Luke a second night in a row, but Master Kenobi was insisting he begin his lessons as usual, at the early time (ass crack of dawn, in the fine Dooku-Force-lineage tradition), and that was just as well because my poor ass needed a break... and I needed some time to sit with this sudden rush of feelings before we did anything more, like him bottoming for me.

So I made my way back to Mahara Kesh. My folks had obviously enjoyed themselves while I was out; Mom and I were both walking funny.

"Hey," Mom said.

"Hey yourself."

"So... how was it?"

"It was good."

"Just good?" Mom arched an eyebrow.

"It was fucking amazing." I looked off to the side. "It was a little too amazing."

"Ah. The Force bond is happening, yes?"

I facepalmed. One thing about Momdad, was he didn't dance around subjects. My father tried to be diplomatically tactful until his chill was gone - honestly that didn't take much - but Momdad had a tendency of being blunt and a bit of a gadfly. Some of this came with the territory of being a physician, because you couldn't exactly diagnose someone properly if you didn't know the down-and-dirty details of what their body was doing. But just like someone doesn't want to be asked about their last bowel movement at dinner, sometimes someone doesn't want to have big epic discussions about their feelings when they're still trying to figure out what the hell it is exactly that they're feeling. Mom was super great at timing like that. However, Mom was considered by most Tythans to be the more personable and approachable of the two, even though Dad's social skills were better on paper; Dad's politeness was more of a mask that concealed a constant mental chess game played on top of a volcano, and Mom's snarky exterior gave way to true sunny warmth if you knew how to get in with him. They balanced each other out - and this was one of the few times when I would rather be dealing with my father, because he'd just make some tea and we'd sip tea over awkward silence before a few awkward words. "Did you enjoy yourselves?" "Yes." "All right." Nodding, and Dad staring out at sea to try to wash that out of his brain.

Meanwhile, here was Mom. "Sex with another Force sensitive is like a bag of potato chips. Once you have one, you can't stop, and you'll start craving it for comfort. It'll be your favorite. Nothing else will satisfy quite the same way."

"Mom."

"What?"

I shook my head, laughing. "You know, some people's mothers make less, uh..." I waved my hand, not knowing the word I was looking for. "Analogies. Like 'life is like a box of chocolates' or something similar."

"Well, life can be like a box of chocolates, yes. Sometimes you get something that's gooey and it gets all over your chin." Mom cackled. "You should have wiped your face before you left Akar Kesh."

I'd given Luke a blowjob before I left. I facepalmed again and could hear myself making Wookiee noises. Great, I had cum on my chin. I didn't know what was worse - that I'd been traipsing around Tython with cum on my chin or that my mom knew exactly what that dried stuff was, and of course, how he'd know, because he and Dad made a career out of... yeah. "Goddammit, Mom."

Mom handed me a towel - he always seemed to know where a towel was - and I managed to wipe my face just in time for Dad to come strolling in. Even though I wasn't that much shorter than my six-five father, his presence in the Force made him feel even bigger than that. I would be scared shitless of him if he weren't my father; as much as we'd butted heads over the years I knew without a doubt if anyone threatened me my parents would annihilate them. My father loved me in his own formal, socially awkward way. I was apprenticed by Qui-Gon and Qui had told me some horror stories about what Dad was like a long time ago, before he and Mom ever met. Mom had thawed him out and loosened him up a lot, apparently, and this was about as good as it got. So here he was, like a giant billowing wave, majestic and terrifying, and I was relieved. Come and save me, Dad.

"Han." Dad gave me a small smile - he wasn't much of a smiler, because he felt his grin looked stupid (and it did, he had the cheesiest grin of all time when he let go enough to do so) - but I could see the warmth in his dark eyes.

"Hey, Dad." I smiled back.

"I take it everything went as expected?" A raise of the eyebrow.

I nodded.

Then both eyebrows up. "What's that on your shirt?"

Mom stole a glance at my shirt and then he just smirked, and that little smirk was worth a thousand words. Dad and I facepalmed simultaneously and made synchronized Wookiee noises.

_

I slept in the next morning - I was used to getting up at ass o'clock as a soldier, so I was going to enjoy what downtime I had before I was deployed again in a few days.

When I finally stumbled out of my room, Mom was in the kitchen area of our living quarters - the Temple had a larger kitchen for communal purposes, but family units had their own private kitchens - and it smelled delicious.

"You baking?"

Mom nodded. "I have a couple pies in the oven. They're just about to come out."

"I hope they're not gonna be burned like your cookies." There was a reason why Dad handled most of the cooking.

Mom bitchfaced, but said nothing as he walked over to the oven. I watched as he donned potholders and took out two pies that were perfectly done - not overcooked. Miraculous.

They were also cherry pies, which were my - and Dad's - favorite. "Aw, Mom."

"So you woke up just in time," Mom said, "because one of these is for your uncle Doogie. While these cool, would you mind running one to Akar Kesh for me?"

"Yeah, OK." I'd take the portal there and save time.

Mom wrapped up one of the pies and handed it to me, and I saluted him before I walked off to the portal gate down the back end of the Temple. I made the jump to Akar Kesh, and walked with the fresh pie down to his office. He wasn't there, but Padme was; sometimes she played secretary for her father-in-law.

"Oh, hey," I said. "Do you know where Dougras is?"

"He's out in the courtyard giving my daughter her lessons," Padme said.

I nodded. Luke was having his today, so of course Leia would have hers. I walked out to the courtyard, and hung back as I watched Dougras and Leia practically fly, his blue lightsaber clashing with her orange, his Juyo against her Soresu. He was a quick and fierce offense - I'd lost to him many times - and she was a careful, precise defense. Their eyes were locked, and I could feel Leia's frustration as he showed her no mercy.

That frustration was also sexual. She was getting hornier for him by the minute. I thought about announcing that I was here with some pie, but something told me to keep quiet.

That something turned out to be Dougras knocking Leia to the ground, and just as his lightsaber moved to her throat, she Force threw him, and then pounced on him, like a cat. They dropped their lightsabers and rolled around, fighting each other hand-to-hand, and then Leia tore Dougras's robe, kissing him passionately, her nails raking over his exposed flesh. Dougras growled and did the same to Leia. I let out a little moan as I saw Leia's tits for the first time. Force, she was beautiful. Watching Dougras lean up to take one of her breasts into his mouth, suckling hard... lucky bastard.

That was gonna be me, sooner or later... hopefully sooner. I decided I was going to watch and... take notes. For science.

Her breasts were even more beautiful with her nipples slick and swollen. Dougras couldn't get enough of them, licking and sucking like he was starving. She clutched at his head and pulled on the points of his ears, moaning.

And then he looked up at her, gave her an evil grin, and I heard him say, "You know, our battle isn't over yet."

"No, it's not." Leia grinned back, and then I watched as she maneuvered himself and straddled his shoulders, sitting on his face, shoving his face into her. She cried out as he went to work; I watched his head shake back and forth, and I could feel in the Force that she was already close to orgasm. "Fuck," she moaned.

"Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm." Dougras pulled back a little and I watched him lick at her more slowly and deliberately.

"I think I won," Leia panted.

"Oh, I don't know." Dougras took a few more slow, teasing licks. "I've got quite a prize here." With that, he buried his face in her bush and Leia clutched at him, screaming. In between her yelps and howls I could hear slurping noises. My own cock was rock fucking hard, and I felt like I needed to drop the pie and go rub one out, but dammit, I couldn't stop watching. I wasn't attracted to my uncle at all - not this uncle, anyway - but damn if he and Leia weren't hot together, and thinking about myself in his place, doing to her what he was doing...

He made her come, and then he slipped his fingers inside her and I watched his tongue dance on her clit till he brought her off a second time - this time she gushed all over his face. She giggled at the mess she made, and so did he, and she climbed down and leaned in to kiss him, and then licked her juices off his face, and they rubbed their tongues together before kissing again, deeply. Her hand was on his cock now, petting, stroking slowly.

Her hands roamed over him, fingers playing in his chest hair, and his fingers wandered over her, lingering on her breasts. He leaned up to start kissing her breasts again, and then she pushed him down and kissed his neck, his shoulder, making him moan, and when she kissed down to his nipples and started licking them, he whined and arched to her. Her hand sped up on his cock.

They looked into each other's eyes, giving each other one of those hot, intense eye-fucking stares that two people who are really into each other give, and I knew he was telling her something through their Force bond, though I couldn't hear what. I watched as she straddled his hips and took his cock, both of them crying out as he filled her.

He took a few slow thrusts and then she rode him hard, bouncing on his cock. My own cock felt like it was going to explode. Her tits were bouncing, and it was the hottest thing I'd ever seen in my life. He cupped her breasts, playing with the nipples, and then he leaned up again to lick and kiss her nipples, driving her crazy until she couldn't take it and grabbed him by the points of his ears, kissing him deeply.

She kept riding hard, and he fucked her with abandon, the two of them gasping and panting and grunting and moaning, the slap of their flesh and the sloppy sound of her wetness as loud as their sex noises. I loved watching Leia's tits played with, licked, nibbled, suckled, loved the reactions she gave... but it was even better watching them kiss, for some reason. The way they looked at each other, breathing each other's breath with their foreheads pressed together, noses nuzzling... there was something intimate about it that was just fucking hot, hotter when I thought about doing that with her myself.

She climaxed before he did, but it wasn't long before he did too, crying her name. They joined hands as they gasped for breath, and I watched the air shimmer around them, both of them glowing softly... and a chill went down my spine. I was still horny as fuck, but now I had goosebumps and I felt... I still don't know, all these years later, how to describe how I felt. I thought of the way Luke and I had connected in the Force when we were together, and I found myself missing him.

And that scared me.

I was about to go back into the Temple, but Leia and Dougras decided they wanted another round, and I watched, riveted as she changed positions... turning around to straddle him with her back turned to him, the good old reverse cowgirl. She rode him more slowly, and he reached around to hold her, one hand playing with her tits, the other hand playing between her legs, working her clit. As their hips rolled, Dougras kissed her neck and her shoulder, and every so often tilted her face so they could kiss and rub their tongues together. When he stuck his slick fingers in her mouth so she could taste her juices on them I felt like I was going to come in my pants right there.

They kept the pace slow until they couldn't, and then she rode him even harder than she did before, and his arms tightened around her. I knew from riding Claer that same way that there is an element of trust and vulnerability in this position - you're exposing your back to them, and it's comforting to feel them pressed against your back, holding you. It makes for a deeper surrender. They couldn't stop kissing as they got closer, and when his hand worked furiously on her clit I knew she was about to come. I braced myself, but her orgasm was still so overwhelmingly intense that it hit me, too. I fell to my knees, moaning as I came without even touching myself, and a minute later I saw her eyes meet mine.

Ah, shit. She knows I watched her. She's gonna think I'm a perv.

So I got up and left, not wanting to make the moment even more awkward. I brought the pie to his office, left it with Padme, and took the portal back to Mahara Kesh. The worst part was, even after coming, I was still so fucking horny. I couldn't get Leia's tits out of my mind, or her naked body in general... how much passion she could put into the fuck. I hadn't even touched her, yet, but I felt almost like I had, and I wanted more. Needed more.

I was so shaken up from the awkwardness of being spotted in my voyeurism that I hid for the rest of the day, claiming I didn't feel good. My parents are doctors and they knew that was bullshit, but mercifully they let me be instead of trying to pry about "what was wrong". And I think Mom already knew. He's observant like that.

_

The next morning I was up early, even though I would have liked to sleep in like the day before - military conditioning and all of that. My father was already up and about when I got up, and as I helped myself to a pot of coffee, he said mildly, "Feeling better?"

"Um, not really." I looked down.

He gave a little chuckle. "Oh dear."

I shot him a look, not able to help it, and that just made him smile into his coffee. I didn't like that. "This isn't funny," I said.

Dad put his cup down and sighed. "Son, sit down."

I did. And then Dad took a moment to gather his words. I rolled my eyes and shifted in my seat uncomfortably. Finally he looked me in the eye and said, "I have survived many things that many other people have not survived. As someone who has been given years that countless others did not have, and years that only felt like living life because of the gift of love, let me give you the most valuable piece of advice I can give to anyone - life is too short to spend running from your feelings."

"Dad..."

"I'm not good at flowery words and messy displays of emotion, and it's something you seem to have picked up from me, unfortunately. But don't make your old man's mistake of trying to close yourself off and keep everybody at an arm's length because you're afraid of hurting them, or being hurt yourself. That's not a life."

I didn't know what to say. I just drank coffee.

Mom came out, fresh from the shower, wearing a robe, his hair in a towel. "Oh hey there!" he said, beaming at me. "Feeling better this morning?"

I made a Wookiee noise, not able to help it.

"He will be if he pulls his head out of his arse," Dad said, before taking another sip of coffee.

"Yan Dooku." Mom put his hands on his hips. "Don't tell me you guys are fighting -"

"No, he was... giving me some advice." I glared at him again, feeling too much under a spotlight. "Unsolicited advice."

Dad didn't reply to that. I got up before Mom could say anything.

I decided to go see Lando. Lando worked at Vur Tepe, the Forge, the Temple on the volcano. Sifo-Dyas, my dad's best friend, was Je'daii Master there. I was just in time to catch Lando and Sifo as they were finishing up their morning agenda meeting.

"I'm so glad you stopped by," Lando told me. "You gotta see this."

"What, pictures of your latest conquests?" I rolled my eyes.

"No, man, I got video for that. But check this out." Before I could protest, Lando dragged me by the arm through a series of corridors, with Sifo following behind us.

There was a ship, that looked like one of the old Je'daii Order relics - still surprisingly functional - but it was being worked on. Upgraded. "Oh, wow," I said.

"Isn't she sweet?" Lando grinned. "And she's mine."

"She was mine," Sifo said, "but I lost a bet."

I walked around the ship, impressed. I'd learned how to fly when I was just a kid - Luke and Leia's asshole sperm donor taught me, before he sired them - and I was widely regarded as the Rebellion's best pilot. Spacecraft interested me. I had my own flagship with the Rebel Alliance, but it wasn't the same as having a smaller, personal vessel. I felt envious of Lando... again. Lando sometimes expressed envy for my military life, and I definitely sometimes wished I'd followed in my father's footsteps, content to live in his shadow, rather than deciding to blaze my own trail in the Galaxy.

"Does she have a name?" I asked.

"The Millennium Falcon," Sifo said. "So named because she's an ancient relic, made new and exciting again."

"That's a stupid fucking name," I said.

"Someone named Han Solo Dooku shouldn't be telling anyone what a stupid fucking name is," Sifo shot back, grinning.

"Damn." I couldn't get over how... cool... the ship was. "That's a real beauty." I cocked my head to one side and looked at Lando. "It's not like you ever leave Tython, though."

"It's not like I ever had a ship to go anywhere. Now I can sometimes take little vacations." Lando smiled. "Maybe take some of my fine honeys with me."

"Yeah, just don't... get killed by the Rethugs." I took another walk around the ship.

Lando and I went down to his quarters, which had an interesting view of the lava fields. The Temple was protected by a force field in case the volcano erupted, just like Mahara Kesh was protected in case of tidal waves; there were enough Force Storms on Tython that these things happened. We'd learned that staying close to the middle of the Force could keep Tython calm, but the weather, wildlife, and fault lines were known to respond to things like strong emotions, and I was starting to rethink if visiting Lando here was such a great idea, even with the shielding around Vur Tepe.

Lando packed a bowl, and we smoked. "What's eating you?" he asked.

"Luke Skywalker," I said, and then I realized the innuendo that could be had there... and so did Lando. He cackled.

"Mmmhmm." Lando puffed and passed. "I see. Or, rather, I don't, because I wasn't invited to watch."

I facepalmed, immediately thinking of Leia. "Did she tell you?"

"She? What?"

"Never mind."

"Oh Han Dooku no, none of this never mind. You came over here to a goddamn volcano ready to erupt the damn thing with your frustrations. So you tell me what's up."

I sighed. I told him about the amazing sex I had with Luke, and how I had a thing for both Skywalker twins, which neither of them minded... but then I might have blown it by perving on Leia getting it on with my uncle.

"She's gonna think I'm a creeper," I said, "and then Luke will probably want nothing to do with me -"

"OK, I know you've been away from Tython for awhile, so let me clue you in on something," Lando said. "If Leia has a problem with you? You'll know. So until and unless she confronts you... don't sweat it."

"I can't help sweating it." I looked down. "And that's part of what bugs me about all of this. I'm acting like I want something serious with them. They're just sixteen. I'm gonna be deployed again in two days, for fuck's sake. How can this work?"

"How can anything work with anyone?" Lando sat back in his chair. "Like your parents are as different as night and day, and they've been together a long time now, right?"

I nodded.

"And even though I fucked that fine-ass mother of yours..."

I made a Wookiee noise, covering my face with my hands. "Dammit, Lando..."

"and I made him scream real loud and he painted the ceiling..." He couldn't resist being an asshole. "I couldn't steal him away even if I'd wanted to. There are probably a lot of people who'd look at those two and naysay them, and wonder how they even wound up together, but there they are."

"Yeah, but it's different with them."

"Yeah, but, yeah, but... it's different with everybody, because different people are different. You don't know that things with Luke and Leia will work out, sure, but you don't know that they won't, either. I do know they're not blind and they're not stupid - they know you're career military and you're going back out in a couple of days, and clearly that hasn't stopped them from putting designs on you." When I uncovered my face, Lando raised an eyebrow. "You say you saw Leia and your uncle doing the nasty, right?"

I nodded.

"Right out there in an open field."

I nodded.

"Did it occur to you that maybe she wanted you to find her doing that? Like her Forcey sense went off that you were coming and she wanted you to get an eyeful?"

"Well, it seemed pretty spontaneous," I said. "They were sparring."

"OK, but I think she knew you were watching. And even if she didn't - you'd have heard it by now if she had a problem." Lando smirked. "Everyone on goddamn Tython would have heard it by now. That one is a feisty little fireball."

"Her brother's a fucking beast."

"Well maybe if they ravage you enough, you might get injury leave and get to chill here awhile longer?"

"Ha. Ha. Ha."

_

When I got back to Mahara Kesh from Vur Tepe, Luke was waiting for me. I was thrilled to see him and scared shitless at the same time.

Something told me Mom had intervened and called him to come over, because he looked as nervous as I felt. He'd been so bold about asking me to be his Chosen - almost demanding - but now he seemed almost bashful. There was an awkward pause as we looked at each other, waiting for the other to speak, and finally I made the "go ahead" gesture to Luke.

"You didn't call," Luke said.

"Ah, shit." I ran my hand through my hair, to the back of my head, not knowing what to say.

"So was that it? Some kind of first-time conquest for you and now you're bored?"

"No. No... not at all." I looked down at my shoes, and then at Luke, with his arms folded.

"You sure?"

I nodded. "I'm sorry I didn't call. I was planning on asking you to come over tonight. I just needed a couple days to... process everything."

"You didn't like it?"

"I liked it too much." I sighed. "That's the problem."

"It's a problem that you liked it?"

Dammit. "It's..." I sighed again. "I don't know how to explain it. It was just really, really intense." I looked down again, and back up. "You're only the second Force-sensitive I've done anything with. And it was really, uh, Force-y." Force-y? Smooth, Han. Real fuckin' smooth.

I could tell Luke was trying not to laugh, and dammit why was he so cute when he grinned. "Well, that's a relief. I thought you didn't like -"

"Oh, Force, no. No trust me, I loved it." I could hear Mom puttering around down the hall; of course he and Dad were fucking eavesdropping on this - Dad tried to mask his presence in the Force but I knew him too well. "Can we go somewhere more private to talk?"

"Like where, your bedroom?"

I grinned at him, and I said, "Eventually." I gestured outside. "Let's go to the treehouse."

Luke's face lit up, like an eager puppydog. I was about to find out why those were exactly the words he wanted to hear.

When we got up in the treehouse I found out it wasn't empty. There was Leia.

Spread out on silky bedding, with a pile of pillows.

Wearing a gold bikini. A very ornate bikini, the top of which looked like it was made out of metal and jewels. I knew she spent a lot of time at Bodhi, and I wondered if she'd made it or commissioned it for the occasion. And didn't care, because fuck.

I felt like my jaw was hanging down to my knees, and there was a very obvious tent in my pants now. I couldn't make words, looking at her. She was like a sex goddess incarnate.

"Fancy meeting you here," she purred. "Come here often?"

I wanted to laugh at her quip; any other time I would. Right now all my brain could manage was me want fuck now. "Uh."

Luke dragged me over to the bedding and threw me down. He started undressing. Twice the Skywalkers, double the lust. I couldn't breathe.

"You planned this," I stammered.

"Duh," Luke said, grinning. Then he pounced on me.

Leia's hand was down her panties, playing with herself as she watched me make out with her brother. Luke undressed me, and when he started kissing and licking at my naked torso, Leia took my head in her hands and kissed me, hard. Stuck her fingers in my mouth so I could taste her juices.

"Fuck," I gasped.

Luke took my cock in his mouth, as I made out with Leia. For someone who had very little experience, he was so good at it. Leia and I kissed again and again as her brother sucked me, and at last her bikini top came off and those gorgeous breasts were in my hands, in my mouth.

And just before I could come, Leia used the Force to tie me up. Leaving me tied and helpless to watch as Luke took over, kissing her with my precum in his mouth, suckling her breasts, her hand on his cock, his fingers on her clit, until they couldn't take it anymore and she pushed him down and straddled him, to start riding him the way she'd ridden Dougras, except Luke was sitting up a little so they could kiss and caress each other. It was the hottest damn thing I'd ever seen in my life. I felt like my dick was going to explode.

I whimpered, not able to help it. Luke and Leia broke their kiss and looked at me. "Oh, poor baby," Leia said.

I whined again. "Dammit..."

"Use your words," Luke told me. "You have to tell us what you want."

I wanted everything. And I couldn't even make words. I couldn't remember my own name. I just whined again.

Luke and Leia laughed and went back to kissing, and Leia rode him harder. The sound of her wetness was driving me crazy, crazier when they fucked even harder, Luke's hands on her hips as he drove into her, and I could hear his balls smacking against her. When Luke sucked hard at her tit, Leia threw her head back and I could feel her coming, followed by Luke's throbbing release a few seconds later, crying out.

I needed to come so badly, but I... wasn't allowed? There was some kind of lock on me with the Force and them, keeping me under their control. And that turned me on even more.

After they took a moment to come down and kiss, they turned their attention back to me. "Poor Han," Luke said.

Leia giggled as her hands ran over me. "What shall we do with him?"

"I'm already ready to go again," Luke said. He took my cock in his hand and stroked it, slowly. "What do you think?" he asked me. "Would you like me to fuck you? My cock is all lubed up for you, slick with my sister's juices..."

"Oh, fuck," I groaned, out of my fucking mind at the thought of it. "Yes..."

"Yes, what?"

"Yes, please."

"That's a good boy." Leia stroked my chin... just before she straddled my face.

Eating Luke's cum out of her while Luke fucked me, slowly at first, was... exquisite. Luke's cock hitting my prostate just the right way, as I worshiped Leia's beautiful cunt, savored her taste, gave her pleasure... it was perfect. Even more when Leia leaned down so she could take my cock in her mouth, sucking as Luke fucked harder. My tongue lapped her then like I was starving for her, lashing her clit as fast as I could, as she moaned around my cock louder and louder. I sucked her clit and felt her quivering, right on that edge. I was ready to come, myself, but I didn't want this to ever stop...

...and the three of us came together, a big, explosive orgasm that shattered us. I had never come so hard in my life. It wasn't just an intense physical release, it was an emotional release. I liked both of them; this could turn into something more, and dammit, I wanted this. If they wanted it, I wasn't going to run from it, even if I should.

They cuddled up on me afterwards, and being sandwiched between them, holding them into my chest, was as nice as the sex itself. It felt cozy. It felt right.

The Galaxy was at war, but I finally had a moment of peace.

Chapter Text

Han

 

The next few days of my shore leave passed by in a blur of hot sex with Luke and Leia, sometimes one-on-one, sometimes together. And then, finally, it was the night before I was supposed to go back out there - on the front lines, this time on a very dangerous mission to disrupt one of the Rethugs' major supply fleets. Less supplies, more problems for them.

Ordinarily, I lived for the thrill, the adrenaline rush. If a mission had odds of not succeeding... I would beat those odds.

But I was scared shitless. Not so much the mission itself, or even facing death, but the idea that if I left, and I died, I'd never get to hold Luke and Leia again. Never get to fuck them. Never get to look into their eyes, hear their voices, their laughter...

...feel them in the Force.

And that I was feeling this way, scared me even more than the mission did.

So instead of going to see Luke and Leia and pouring out my heart to them, I went to go see Lando to get shit-faced. We played dice, as we do, and Lando was once again bragging to me about that new spaceship of his and all the places he was going to go and things he would do once the war was over.

"If the war is ever over," I said.

"No man, it can't last forever. Nothing lasts forever." Lando grinned. "Except my ability to keep it up once it's up."

"Yeah, yeah... I think you should see a doctor for that."

"Me too." Lando leered.

I facepalmed, hard. I knew immediately which doctor he was talking about - my mom - and I'd fucking walked into that one, again. I should have known better, but the booze was already having an affect on my ability to brain. "Goddammit, Lando."

"Well, honestly," Lando said, "between you and me, I haven't gotten any in awhile."

"Really."

"Yeah. I've been busy, fixing up the Falcon, and then of course there's always Temple business... and a lot of people in my appropriate age range are signing up for the Rebellion, and I'm stuck here on Tython."

"Well, if you think the Rebellion is this non-stop orgy, you're wrong. It had been awhile for me, too."

"But it sounds like what you had, was worth the wait."

"Dude. Bro. You should have seen Leia's bikini. It was like my wettest wet dream come true."

"She's nice," Lando said. Then he grinned - that evil grin I know too well. "You know who would be really fine in some gold bikini bottoms?"

I braced myself.

"Your mom."

I knocked back an entire shot glass.

"I wonder if your mom would take pity on me," Lando said. "I mean, he was my Chosen, and it's been awhile..."

"I don't know," I said. "You were like the exception to his monogamy with Dad, and it seemed to be a 'just this once' thing."

"But he enjoyed it."

"As you keep telling me."

"I made that gold cape just for him," Lando said. His evil grin got more evil. "Maybe if I showed up at Mahara Kesh and gave him a gold bikini, and told him it would fulfill a fantasy of mine if he wore it for me..."

"Or maybe he'd tell you to go pound sand."

"I bet you he wouldn't."

"I bet you he would."

"Yeah? So is this an actual bet, or are we just talkin' shit here?"

I poured myself another shot glass, sipped this time instead of knocking it back, and then after a minute, I said, "Actual bet."

"All right."

"If you go down there and you ask my mom to put on a gold bikini and have sex with you -" I couldn't even believe I was having this conversation. Suddenly I needed more alcohol. "-and he says no, then you have to give me something. Something valuable."

"Well, I'm a monk, my guy. I don't have much."

"You have the Falcon." For a minute I just pictured it as my ship, flying across the Galaxy... with Luke and Leia riding in it. Maybe even Uncle Chewie - Yoda was my dad's adopted father, and Yoda and Chewbacca had been a fixture in my life for a long time; Chewie got me drunk for the first time, even.

Lando gave me a look, and then he nodded. "OK, fine. And if he does agree..."

"Then..."

"...you bring me back a case of Corellian brandy."

"Dude, that shit's expensive. I make decent pay, but I don't make that decent."

"It's of equivalent value to the Falcon. The bet isn't fair unless it's equal value."

Lando had a point. "All right. Bet's on."

_

The next morning, I was at the military base near Padawan Kesh. The whole family had come out to see me off - Mom, Dad, Uncle Dougras, Uncle Claer, Qui, Obi, Chewbacca and Yoda, Lando... and Luke and Leia.

Mom got overly emotional, as usual, sobbing all over me and begging me to come back in one piece. Dad had few words, as usual, but his eyes were too bright and I could feel the lump in his throat, and when he hugged me, it was with an iron grip and he held on too long, longer than anyone else. He looked away as soon as we pulled away, and I could feel him holding back the tears, which he'd save for later when it was just Mom seeing them.

But Dad said, "I love you. I'm proud of you."

It was very hard not to break down and sob, myself.

Claer gave me a kiss, and groped my ass, and I groped him back. Leia and Luke watched with interest - and I found their interest very interesting - and Claer noticed too.

You really like them, huh?

I just nodded a little, and then Claer said, Oh, it's more than like.

It was. Except just like Dad, I was bad with emotions and saying things. Luke and Leia pulled me into a group hug, cried on me, and I cried a little with them, but I couldn't say those three words. And me not being able to say them - Luke looked like a sad, hurt puppydog. The expression on his face as I walked away, giving a little wave, still haunts me to this day.

It was all I thought about as my warbird jumped into hyperspace.

_

It was what I thought about when we were fired on, the Rethugs crashing our party. We'd expected some heat, but we didn't expect this much, this fast. We weren't outnumbered - not yet - but we were evenly matched now, and they had the better ships, better equipment.

I have to make it out of here. I had all these men and women under my command, who were trusting me to get them safely home, I couldn't destroy their lives, or their families'...

...I had to get back to Luke and Leia. To Mom and Dad.

War is a lot like gambling. When you play certain games, sometimes the best strategy - the only strategy - is to bluff. To do a fake-out. Make the opponent think you're doing one thing, when that's not in your hand of cards at all.

"Set a collision course for the big guy," I said, pointing to the dreadnought they'd sent - how thoughtful of them. It was ten times bigger than our ship, and my warbird was not small.

"General Dooku. Sir." Captain Andros, a short, older man, gave me a concerned look. "You're ordering us on a suicide mission?"

"I said collision course, not suicide mission. It's two different things. Ensign Radin, you have your order, engage."

"Aye, sir," the youngest of my crew replied - good kid - and set the coordinates. I sat in my command chair and braced myself, watching as we lurched forward.

"Open hailing frequencies to all other ships," I said. When the hail was made, I said, "Rebel Alliance fleet, this is General Han Solo Dooku. Retreat immediately, I repeat, retreat immediately. Jump to hyperspace, abort this mission, and report to our nearest base on Yavin."

"Sir." Captain Andros stood up now, with his hands on his hips. "You're having us collide with that ship, and the others abort the mission - which we could still do if we hang in there -"

"No, we can't. We're already evenly matched and it'll be a few minutes now before they have reinforcements and we're outnumbered." I glared. "I know you mean well, I know you're freaked out, but trust me, I know what I'm doing. I have no intention of dying today."

"How...?"

"Sit down and shut the fuck up, Captain, that is an order. Time is of the essence here and if you question me one more time, your ass is going to the brig, am I clear?"

"Aye, sir." Andros sat down and shut the fuck up.

I watched as the hyperspace gates opened, one at a time. "Ensign Radin, open a channel to engineering."

He did, and I said, "Engineering, reroute all power not being used by the engines or life support to our shields. I want the shields at maximum capacity."

Our chief engineer stammered, "Sir, that's not going to protect us if we collide -"

"We're not colliding. Do what I say, now, please."

I watched as the lights on the bridge went out, and all systems except our navigational system went out; on the observation window of the bridge, it looked like someone had placed a colored filter over the plate, which meant our shields were up as much as they could go.

Of course, the dreadnought in front of us wasn't moving, because our ship wouldn't even make a dent if it hit theirs, and they assumed we were on a suicide mission - kill ourselves instead of being taken prisoner...

...and that was exactly what I wanted them to think. Stay right there, you stupid fucks.

"Ensign Radin, tell me how many seconds before collision, starting now."

"Ninety seconds, sir."

"Keep going."

"Eighty seconds." Pause. "Seventy." Pause. "Sixty."

I did the math in my head.

"Fifty." Pause. "Forty." Pause. "Thirty-"

"Launch hyperspace, now."

There was an explosion of white light, and I felt the ship rattle as we were hurled into the hyperspace field. All around us was debris, as we'd blasted through the largest Republic vessel - and on my calculations, the explosion had likely taken out every single vessel in the area, especially our target of the supply vessels. The ship continued to rattle, and made warning noises, but we were still alive, and finally, after what seemed like forever, we came out at Yavin.

We immediately got a hail. "This is Admiral Therat. I got the report from Captain Jensen when your fleet aborted and came here on your order. They saw you making a collision course. How the fuck are you still alive? The odds of you surviving that -"

"Never tell me the odds, Admiral."

_

We had indeed taken out a major supply fleet, which dealt a non-insignificant blow to the Rethugs.

There was a party on the Yavin base. However, intoxicants were forbidden on the Rebel Alliance bases... so after the party, there was an afterparty. Captain Andros felt bad for challenging me on the bridge, and offered to take me out to a pub. I was rattled enough that I needed the drink.

Or, drinks, plural. I got as wasted as I'd ever been in my life.

I decided it was a great idea to play pool, except I was so fucked up I couldn't even shoot the cue right, and finally I just had to sit down and watch Andros play. Then my holophone rang, with the ringtone letting me know it was Mom.

I took it, even though it wasn't cool to be talking to your mom in a bar. I had a reputation with my crew as being a mama's boy, and they knew it, and I didn't give a fuck what anyone else thought because they weren't out there putting their asses on the line for the Galaxy like we were.

"Mom," I said. "HI MOM."

"Honey. You're all right!"

"Of course I'm all right." Then I threw up - thankfully not on the phone itself, but Mom still saw me throw up.

"Han, are you drinking?" A pause. "Are you at a bar?"

"I'm a grown adult, Mom. It was a rough day."

"Have you eaten? You shouldn't drink on an empty stomach -"

"MMMMMMMMMMMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMM. I'M FINE, MOM." I hurled again.

Mom folded his arms. "Han, go back to the base and eat some saltines or something."

"YOU DON'T RUN MY LIFE, MOM." And then I started crying.

"What's the matter, honey?"

"Why are you calling a dude Mom?" a big Togruta asked, interrupting us.

"Why don't you shut the fuck up?" I snapped, and then said, to the holophone, "Not you, Mom."

"I figured THAT." Mom gave the Togruta a look, and the Togruta made a noise like "peh" and shuffled off.

I cried some more. "Just stress." I sniffled. I thought of Luke's face before I left. How I didn't man up and tell him how I felt.

And across the universe, Mom felt it. "And by stress, we mean the Skywalker twins."

I broke down and cried even harder.

"OK, honey? As soon as you and I are done talking here, I want you to call that nice Skywalker boy right away, and tell him how you feel. I don't want you to worry about sounding stupid, or anything else. You already regret not telling him. You could have died today, and you would have died with that regret. As bad as your dad is with emotions, he told you he loved you, today. In front of people, and everything. Because after what happened on Corellia, twenty years ago, we knew that every day might be our last. Every time we saw each other, might be our last."

"If I tell him... them... that makes things, like, official." I cried some more. "I'm worried about that, too."

"Yeah but you know what? It'll all work out, somehow. You'll find a way to make things work. You all need to at least try. And it'll give you something to come back to."

"Thanks, Mother."

"You got it." And then Mom pursed his lips. "So I'm not just calling you to see how you are, after being worried and wound up all day."

"Oh? Is Dad all right?"

"I'M FINE, HAN," Dad yelled from the background. Of course he was eavesdropping.

"Your friend Lando stopped by Mahara Kesh today."

"Oh shit, really?"

"Yeah. He had a gift for me." A pause. "An itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny, golden silk and chain bikini."

"Oh, Force, why."

"He told me he hadn't gotten laid in awhile and he asked me to put it on and help him out."

"Did you?"

"No," Mom said.

I started laughing. And crying. And laughing some more.

Mom raised an eyebrow.

"Lando lost a bet," I said. "I have a spaceship now. You can go to Vur Tepe and collect it and bring it back for me."

"I'll send your father," Mom said. "I'm sure he'd love to have a word or five with Lando."

My sides hurt.

"And now," Mom said, "you need to have a word or five with Luke Skywalker."

I took a deep breath. "OK."

"I love you."

"Love you too."

I didn't want to have this conversation in the pool hall of a pub, but there was no time like the present. I punched in the code to call Luke. And waited. Finally, Luke's hologram appeared on the screen.

"What," he said, sounding so sad it was like being stabbed in the gut.

"Well, I made it."

"I'm glad." He didn't sound glad.

"Luke." I sighed. "Luke, I'm sorry that I didn't... say..."

And then Leia was right there, and I said, "I love you. Both of you."

"I know," Leia said. She started shaking Luke. "See, I told you so."

"I'm sorry I'm bad with feelings, and words, but this entire thing is freaking me out. A lot. Because I want to try to have something, and I'm worried about hurting you, or being hurt, if we can't figure out the right balance of give and take..."

"We'll figure it out," Leia said. "Just come back to us safely."

Luke swallowed. "You mean it?"

"I wouldn't say it if I didn't mean it. I love you. A lot."

And then I threw up again.

I was a sobbing, incoherent mess when Andros decided we could go back to the base. But he didn't want to go immediately back to the base. We took the scenic route, because the fresh air would do us both some good, and Andros got weird when he was drunk and had to tell me how much he loved the stars and the trees and he missed his homeworld and he almost shat himself on the bridge. We passed by a tattoo shop - we were in a seedier part of Yavin's capital - and Andros decided to stop in, since they were still open, and they give discounts if you're military.

A lot of my crew had tattoos already, and I was one of the few who didn't. Andros was badgering me now. "Come on, man, we could have died today. What's a little needle?"

Well, it wasn't a little needle, it was a big-ass needle, and it made a noise. But I wasn't going to wuss out in front of my first officer. The problem was I didn't know what the fuck to tattoo on myself. I looked at the artwork on the walls, if you could call it that, and none of it appealed to me. I thought about getting Luke and Leia's names in a heart but that seemed stupidly sentimental, and what if it didn't work out, and all that shit.

And then I thought about Mom, and how because of him I had a spaceship waiting for me... and a girlfriend and boyfriend.

"This is what you can tattoo on me," I said to the artist. My voice was slurred because I was really, really, really, really three sheets to the fucking wind. I could barely understand myself. "Thanks, Mother. No Regrets."

_

I woke up the next day with THENKS MATHER NO RAGRETS on my arm.

It wasn't a huge tattoo, and it was one that could be covered up with a sleeve most of the time - a long sleeve. But it was still an obvious tattoo.

An obvious, badly spelled tattoo.

The Yavin base was attacked a few days later, and I managed to escape, but I got hit with some shrapnel. It wasn't horribly disfiguring, but I got a nick on my chin and got it worse on my back, right side and shoulder. I was in the hospital for a couple days and then Rebel Alliance Medical sent me back to Tython for a six-week medical leave.

Mom fussed over me - all I wanted to do was sleep the first two days I was back, I'd never been so fucking tired in my life. And I had nightmares, about the attack on the base, and other memories of the war. I woke up screaming and Dad was there, to hold me, and let me cry on him... and he cried too.

"I feel like this is my fault," he said.

"The war isn't your fault," I said.

"I'd left the Jedi and they kept getting worse," Dad said. "And..." He gestured to me. "I know you joined the Rebellion because you felt I would judge you if you stayed here, became a Je'daii Ranger, and I didn't feel you measured up. And you've put yourself in harm's way. And..."

"Dad, I wanted to join the Rebellion as soon as it started because of what those fuckers did to us back on Corellia. I may have only been six at the time, but I still remember. I mean sure, I felt like I'd be living in your shadow and I'd somehow always disappoint you, but that really wasn't why. I felt I could do more good, out there. You raised me with a strong sense of duty, and that was my call to duty. And, being really real here, the call to adventure. Lando is always bored here."

"Yes. He thought it was a good idea to try to break an agreement we'd made years ago, clearly the boy has a deathwish."

I cackled. "Did you fuck him up, Dad?"

"I didn't need to. All I had to do was look at him a certain way and say nothing, and I believe it conveyed my message."

And then Dad was serious again. "Han, you don't disappoint me. You wouldn't have disappointed me if you became a Je'daii, and stayed here - I would have been proud that you did what you felt the Force wanted you to do, and gave it your best, regardless of where that concept of 'the best' was at. And I am very, very proud of you now, as a General in the Rebellion, giving your life for the greater good of the Galaxy. Trying to restore order. Trying to preserve hope."

"That means a lot, Dad."

He just cuddled me, like he did when I was a little kid, and eventually that put me back to sleep, and I dreamt of when I was a boy in those first months after Mom and Dad took me in, riding piggyback on Dad's shoulders, Mom twirling me around, rolling in leaf piles, and Mom telling me about his people being trees, and taking me to his ancestor tree, and feeling like his parents were watching us and accepted me as part of their line. Part of their people. They were welcoming me home, to the Green Hills.

It was a home I'd lost, a home that I only knew in my heart, now. I imagined it was so much worse for Mom, and that as long-lived as his people are, twenty years might as well have been yesterday.

I got a bit of an appetite again, and Mom brought me in breakfast, and then wrinkled his nose and said, "You stink. Off to the shower with you." But then he pursed his lips and said, "We need to change those bandages, though."

Since Mom is a doctor, he wanted to do it. And of course that meant seeing me shirtless - and seeing the tattoo.

Mom laughed so hard he fell on the floor, holding his sides, crying. When Mom laughs really hard he snorts, and the snorting and howling alerted Dad, who came in.

"Oh no." I reached for my shirt, scrambling to put it on, but it was too late.

"What is that on your arm?" Dad asked.

"Uh, nothing?" It was the stupidest answer I could have given him - of course we both knew it wasn't nothing.

Dad looked at my arm, and then he had the same look on his face that he probably gave Lando when he showed up at Vur Tepe to collect the Falcon.

Mom took one look at Dad's expression and laughed even harder.

"This isn't funny," Dad said.

"YES. YES IT IS," Mom wheezed.

"SEVERUS. OUR SON HAS PERMANENTLY MUTILATED HIS BODY WITH ATROCIOUS GRAMMAR."

Mom sat up, and then a minute later he grinned and said, "Well actually, honey, it's atrocious spelling."

Dad glared at Mom, and Mom lost it again, in tears from hysterical laughter.

_

Luke and Leia came by that afternoon. They held onto me for dear life, and we hug-walked our way to my bedroom and fell into a cuddle pile.

We just held each other, for awhile. Then Luke and Leia decided they wanted to play "doctor" and examine my injuries.

I was a little worried about how they'd react to my tattoo, and they had some giggles, but they were too horny to care - and that was a relief.

But then, as we were making out, touching each other, I felt Luke and Leia's fingers walking over my healing wounds, the Force crackling in their fingertips... and that felt even more intimate than being inside Leia or having Luke inside me. And then Luke's lips brushed over them, and I felt his tears... salt in the wound, stinging... but also cleansing.

I grabbed him and pulled him in for a kiss, and let him see the tears in my eyes, let him feel that I was vulnerable too. My heart was in their hands, and they could break me.

But there was love. I hadn't just come back to Tython, I'd come home. The three of us weaved our Force energy together, like a magic circle, keeping out everything bad, just for now. Making us feel safe. When Luke entered me, and I entered his sister at the same time, her riding my cock as Luke took one hand and Leia took the other... it was all alright.

We'd find our way, somehow.

Chapter Text

Sarenya: Before

So I might have removed my shirt a bit more abruptly than I'd intended to. It had been a stressful few days, to say the least.

"You want me to... what?"

"Check my ink," I repeated, indicating my back. "I don't have a good angle on the relevant parts, and... well, it's not the sort of thing that shows up in a mirror."

Claer hesitated, but finally nodded. "What am I looking for?"

"Just..." I swallowed. "Start by telling me what color it is, and we can go from there."

The way he turned me towards the light might have been awkward, his hand on my bare skin a gateway to all sorts of unintentional discomfort. But he behaved like a man who rarely touched anyone even outside of a sexual context, the light brush of his fingers suggesting a direction rather than demanding it. And damn me if that touch wasn't the warmest thing I'd felt in days.

I admit I held my breath as he inspected my back. He didn't know how to read the intricate designs of Khid Linnad tattoos, but anyone else I could have consulted was either unavailable by virtue of geography or very, very dead. My brother-in-law may not have been trained in our ways, but he was the closest thing I had to a colleague at the moment.

"Green," Claer said at last. "A very light green, like a plant that hasn't gotten enough sunlight."

I exhaled, finally letting out a breath it felt like I'd been holding in for the last few days. "That's... well, I won't say 'good.' But black would be worse. Green we can work with."

Claer handed me my shirt. "'We'?"

I shivered back into my shirt, but didn't bother with lacing it up all the way this time. "I need your help," I said. "It all went wrong, and I'm--" I bit down hard on any further words.

He regarded me for a few moments, and then nodded. "Whatever's going on, this sounds like a conversation we'll need to be high for."

I laughed--a rusty approximation of how I usually sounded, but still a laugh. "Isn't every conversation one you need to be high for?"

He grinned as he took out his pipe and started packing it. "You know me too well."

I barely know you at all, I thought, but didn't say it. Instead, I sat with him on the low couch, accepted the pipe when he passed it to me, inhaling the smoke and letting it start to settle my jangling nerves.

"This has to do with the birth, doesn't it." It wasn't a question.

I nodded. "I've helped dozens of babies into the world over the years. Gone toe-to-toe with death in some cases, and still brought them all through alive and whole. But this was... different."

Claer made a small noise, half encouragement, half query, as I passed the pipe back to him. I could sense all the questions he wanted to ask, but also that he was waiting for me to tell the story at my own pace.

"I could tell early on that this birth would be a hard one," I said. "Not just physically, although Padme's built small enough that it was a concern from the start. But as her labor progressed, I could sense..."

I gestured vaguely, trying to convey in words the visceral feeling of not right that had gripped me as I'd examined Padme in the Force.

"The womb is the great darkness at one end of life, as death is the darkness at the other," I continued finally. "Both hold no terror besides that which we ascribe to them; each one is a comforting embrace, a place to rest, and a gateway to the other.

"When it became clear that Padme's labor wasn't moving forward as it should, and the twins could be in danger, I reached out with the Force to try to find the source of the trouble. And..."

I was silent for long enough that Claer coughed slightly, and not from the Forceleaf. "And...?"

"And there was no physical reason for the difficulty. By all measures, it should have been a relatively easy birth. But something had a hold on those children, on their spirits, and was trying to keep them from manifesting on this plane of existence."

"When you say 'something'..."

I shivered, feeling the chill of that presence all over again. "It was like a rent in the fabric of everything that is. Pure nothingness. The power that would consume all life." I made a sign against ill luck, reflexively. "And it saw me. It knew me."

Claer's hand rested on mine, warm and steady. An anchor against the horror. I swallowed, and gathered my words once more.

"Luke was relatively easy to get free of its grasp. Leia, though... Leia was being drained by this thing, consumed slowly before she could draw her first breath.

"Maybe what I did was foolish. I'd be the first to say so, even though my actions mean there are two new lives on Tython today instead of one, or none at all. But it was something I'd done before with no trouble, and never felt any ill effects from besides a few days of fatigue afterwards."

"What are you saying?"

"When I saw Leia's spirit being sucked dry by that... that thing, I didn't think, I just acted. There's a technique I was taught during my midwife training, to give a small portion of one's own soul to a child who might not otherwise have the strength to survive the birth. And like I said, I'd done it before--even for my nephew."

Claer raised an eyebrow. "Little Lando has a piece of you inside him? That explains a lot."

I rolled my eyes. "Only a small piece. Not anywhere near large enough to affect his personality or fate. Force knows he's enough of a handful already without directly emulating the trouble I got into in my younger years.

"In any case, I did the same for Leia, to give her a fighting chance while I worked to disentangle her from the thing's grasp. But I underestimated how much it had drained her already, and didn't consider the possible effects of performing this transfer while it was still attached to her."

"...Oh. Oh."

I gripped Claer's hand, pleading with him with my eyes. "You know of the other universes, the other selves who live in them--who we would be if things had turned out that way instead of this," I said. "Tell me... is it possible for someone to live on when all her other selves have ceased to exist?"

"Possible?" He rolled the word around in his mouth, considering. "Anything's possible. Probable is another matter."

I pulled my hand away, looked at the floor rather than meet the sympathy in his warm brown eyes.

"I saw the Jedi murder my people again," I whispered. "Not the same way, not with fire and blades of light. There was a dust they used that poisoned everything it touched, withered every scrap of green on Yllen. In my last days, I wandered through what had been the Great Forest, seeing trees that had stood for thousands of years crumble to blackened ash at my slightest touch, watching my skin become a single festering sore as I grew weaker and weaker.

"And then I saw myself succumb to illness as a child. I saw myself grown and strangled to death by a jealous offworlder lover. I saw myself drowned when an incautious step pitched me into a river's spring flood. I saw myself burnt, stabbed, executed for treason, trampled in the evacuation to Tython, captured and tortured by the Jedi until they finally deigned to slaughter the pitiful husk I'd become. A thousand thousand deaths, all before my appointed time. And in seeing these things, I experienced them all."

I looked down at my hands, noticing in a rather distant way that they'd begun to shake.

"I'm the only one left," I said. "In every other world where another version of me existed, I've been utterly erased. And I don't think I can carry the weight of so much death."

"Ah, Sarre."

I choked on a sob at Claer's use of the intimate form of my name. No one had called me that since before Yllen's destruction; my mother, my sisters, and my uncle had all died in the genocide, and my brother hadn't spoken more than a few words to me since we'd arrived on Tython.

"Did you see anything else in this vision?" Claer continued.

I shook my head.

"Ah. Well, I have a hunch about something. If I may?"

Shyly, as though certain he'd be rejected, he cupped my face in his hands, pressed his lips to mine. It couldn't be called a kiss, not really; it was more a breathing-into, a mingling of Force energies for a specific purpose. I let myself fall into it, following where he led.

Again, I saw the deaths of my other selves across a myriad of universes, felt their pain and fear as if it were my own.

But this time I also saw something else: the spark of a new life kindled from these deaths. In every universe, a girl is born and given the name Leia, eventually becoming a skilled fighter, a fierce lover, a voice for justice, a beacon of hope in a galaxy too long bereft of it. Sometimes her mother dies birthing her and her twin, sometimes she lives--but always when this newborn takes her first breath, a strange silver mist, visible only in the Force, fills her lungs and spreads through her body, integrating itself so fully with her own spirit that it becomes impossible to tell that it was ever a separate part at all.

This, then, was my legacy in other worlds: I didn't live on physically, but my spirit would remain, joined with Leia's, sustaining her life and her convictions as she fights against the ills and evils that plague the Galaxy. She is herself, but on some level she is also me, carrying the blessing of my ancestors and the stubborn determination of the Ylleni people. It was not what I might have chosen for myself, and I quailed at the thought that I'd inadvertently chosen this for Leia before she'd even come into this world, but it seemed fitting, somehow.

The vision ended then, but I didn't pull away from Claer right away. We were sitting closer than we'd started that evening, knees bumping, his hands still cradling my face, our foreheads resting against each other.

"Thank you," I whispered. My voice had gone husky, but I couldn't tell if it was from unshed tears or this unexpected intimacy.

"You're welcome," he said. He wasn't pulling away either.

"You know," I said, "the Khid Linnad have a particular method for recharging our tattoos."

"Do you now."

"Mm-hmm. I've never heard of it being used for a situation quite like this, but I've always been good at improvising. Of course, I'd need your help for it..."

"And just what might said help entail?"

I kissed him--properly this time, soft and sweet, sliding my tongue past his lips to dance with his when he opened his mouth in a groan. Claer's hands moved to my hips, gripping them gently as the kiss deepened; I whimpered and pressed closer, craving his warmth and solidity to counteract the chill that had pervaded me these past few days.

After a few minutes of kisses and caresses, though, Claer pulled back. "Gweir and Dougras...?" he said. "I want this, and if it'll help you recover, then that's good, obviously. But if this is going to hurt my brother and my cousin..."

I smirked. "Whose idea do you think it was for me to come 'consult' with the wizard, anyway?"

"Oh myyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy..."

What we did that night wasn't lovemaking, at least in the usual sense. The sexual energy we raised together got channeled into recharging the tattoos on my back, and realigning the energy centers of my body that had been knocked out of kilter in my encounter with the entity from the void and the experience of feeling my other selves' deaths. Not that it wasn't pleasurable, but the physical aspect of things took a back seat to what we were doing with the Force.

Towards morning, though, when all the energetic work was accomplished, we indulged ourselves in one last round of intimacy, focusing entirely on each other's bodies. Claer was spooned up behind me as we lay on our sides, my back to his chest, his cock sliding slowly inside me as I guided his fingers into the perfect counter-rhythm on my clit.

I wanted to say something to him, express how much this meant to me, how much he meant to me in this moment. "Thank you" seemed too trite, though, and "I love you" both inadequate and inaccurate. I settled for groaning out his name as the first shivers of orgasm rippled through me, repeating it over and over as my climax caught him up and triggered his own, his hips stuttering and finally stilling against mine.

"Sarre," he whispered in response, kissing the back of my neck. "Yes. Oh, yes."

Grand declarations of love are all well and good, I suppose, but right then, finally drifting off into untroubled sleep for the first time in three days, cocooned in warmth and safety, those words were worth far more to me than any others.

Chapter Text

Sev

"OK, honey? As soon as you and I are done talking here, I want you to call that nice Skywalker boy right away, and tell him how you feel. I don't want you to worry about sounding stupid, or anything else. You already regret not telling him. You could have died today, and you would have died with that regret. As bad as your dad is with emotions, he told you he loved you, today. In front of people, and everything. Because after what happened on Corellia, twenty years ago, we knew that every day might be our last. Every time we saw each other, might be our last."

"If I tell him... them... that makes things, like, official." Han cried some more. I still couldn't believe he was calling me from a bar, shit-faced, crying his eyes out. On the other hand, I shouldn't have been surprised; this was Han. "I'm worried about that, too."

"Yeah but you know what? It'll all work out, somehow. You'll find a way to make things work. You all need to at least try. And it'll give you something to come back to."

"Thanks, Mother."

When the holocall was over, I let out a very deep sigh and pinched the bridge of my nose. What my son didn't know - and what I wasn't going to tell him, or tell anyone - was that I had just committed the sin of hypocrisy. I had given my son advice that I, myself, wasn't taking, and the shame of it burned in my cheeks.

Yan had been eavesdropping and masking his presence in the Force, as he does, and he stepped out of the shadows and cleared his throat.

"Is our stubborn bantha's arse of a son finally going to confess his feelings to the Skywalkers?" Yan asked.

I nodded. "He'll listen to his mother."

Yan folded his arms and his lips quirked. "I believe it is time for you to follow your own advice."

I shifted in my seat uncomfortably and a "hoshit" escaped my lips before I could stop myself. He knew. Of course he knew, he was my bondmate, we had a Force bond, we had been married for decades and knew each other better than anyone. I had of course tried to shield my feelings, because it's one thing to feel something and another thing to act on it, and I'd been privately hoping and praying the last whenever that if I didn't acknowledge these feelings they would just go away... and of course they didn't. And some of why I didn't acknowledge any of this was for Yan's sake. He was monogamous, and I loved him fiercely, passionately, and didn't want to hurt him. We'd already been through so much, between what happened on Corellia, and going to war against the Republic.

But he knew, and he'd chosen this moment to reveal that he knew, and...

Yan sat down next to me, his eyes locked with mine. I squirmed.

"Yan, I..." I swallowed hard.

"I'm waiting," Yan said.

 

_

My people had experienced a genocide at the hands of the Jedi. A tenth of us managed to escape, using a portal that had brought my ancient ancestors to Corellia - before the human population arrived on Corellia - and the portal took us to Tython. After we'd been there for awhile, we found out we weren't alone, and another, similar group of people had escaped the same fate on their own planet, Yllen.

I had been the King of my people, born into the position because once every thousand years, a child was born with a full head of leaves (leaves that looked like green hair to the untrained eye, but were in fact leaves). My younger brother, Dougras, was marked as my heir if anything should happen to me - he had some green in his otherwise dark brown hair. I didn't want the job, but I did it anyway, and I was good at it, and when my people made our way across Tython, I invested a lot of energy keeping everyone together, trying to find hope in a hopeless situation. When we got to civilization at Kaleth, I formally mourned our people, and encouraged working with the Yllen to rebuild.

The leader of the Ylleni was a woman named Sarenya Calrissian. She had become Queen not by choice, but because the previous Queens had died. We bonded over our shared experience of loss, and having to be the strong shoulders that held up what remained of our worlds. She had a foster son, named Lando, who became best friends with Han, and Sarenya also took up with my brother Dougras and my cousin Gweir, and, later, my other brother Claer. I saw a lot of Sarenya, and we were close - I considered her my best friend.

And at some point, I had fallen in love with her.

I wasn't sure when it happened - it was a gradual process, like stepping into a pool and going deeper and deeper until you find you're in up to your neck and you wonder how you got in this far. It was a series of little things - noticing the way she smiled and laughed, electricity if our hands touched, enjoying her company, getting weirdly turned on when I saw her kissing one of my brothers. I felt strangely giddy and warm-fuzzy in her presence - getting together with her for tea was a bright spot in my day, and I'd feel like an excited puppy getting ready to see her.

But the real moment of truth came when we had our annual Day of Remembrance, just before Han was to be Luke Skywalker's Chosen.

The Day of Remembrance was unanimously voted on by the Lannin and Ylleni presence on Tython - the names of the people who had been killed in our people's respective genocides were read off, and messages to the dead were written on strips of paper and brought, one by one, to a fire by the friends and family of the deceased. When it was all done, the ashes were taken and added to a fertilizer that was then given to the portion of the forest closest to Akar Kesh, the Temple of Balance - where the redwood trees grew tall and thick, towering over even the tallest of us like sleeping giants. A pilgrimage was taken by the Lannin, Ylleni, and their loved ones of other species who wanted to come with them, hiking into the forest to witness the scattering, during which time the Force Ghosts of the deceased might come forward to visit. My hair was similar in color to the foliage of these trees - it was in fact more reminiscent of the foliage of Tython's redwoods than it had been to the trees of Corellia's Green Hills - and I usually cut a lock of my hair and offered it to the tallest of the redwoods, commonly believed by the Lannin and Ylleni to be the tree of our eldest ancestor.

When I placed a lock of my hair in a hole in the trunk of the tree, and stepped back, Sarenya began to sing. She was standing across from me, and rather dramatically, the clouds parted and three rays of light shone down on her, making her glow golden. The sight took my breath away, and her song made me tear up and break out in gooseflesh even more than usual. I could feel the Living Force in her voice, all around her... and she commanded it flawlessly. Looking at her, in those moments, was like looking at a goddess.

She is the most beautiful woman in the Galaxy.

There was a moment of envying my brothers and cousin. And then a moment of feeling sheepish that I was standing here going gaga over Sarenya, rather than my mind being with the dead and my ancestors. And then a moment of they won't mind, because you have to live, and feeling ridiculous about that.

I needed a stiff drink when I got home. As a rule I didn't drink hard liquor - I was a lightweight with alcohol, being a sentient plant and all - but I usually did need a drink after the ceremony on the Day of Remembrance, because it was emotionally intense to relive the memories of the circumstances that had brought us here, and emotionally intense to connect with the dead. But this time I was drinking for an entirely different reason. Or set of reasons.

First, I had fallen in love with my best friend, I had apparently had A Thing for her for awhile, and I was worried that I'd completely fuck things up if I said anything to her about it, and this wouldn't just ruin our friendship but it would make things awkward for the entire family.

I was worried about fucking things up because she was my best friend - I didn't think she could possibly be interested in me, hence why we'd been just friends the last couple of decades. She was with my brothers and my cousin, and that seemed to be enough Inari for her, I guessed.

To make things even more awkward, I'd fucked her son. It had been once, as his Chosen - Lando had a crush on me for years, and I indulged him when he came of age, and he'd been a good lay, but I felt weird about making it a regular thing. His heart wasn't really broken, because Lando used his newfound confidence to seduce "half of Tython", as the family commonly joked. But even though Lando and I were old history, there was still that hanging over my head.

So I didn't want to make things uncomfortable for her. She'd already been through enough, and I didn't want to make her feel unsafe around me, come off like some creepy guy who was just being nice to her to get down her pants. The fact was, I had been friends with her for close to two decades and though over the last while I'd been noticing her more and more, and this moment of recognizing I was in love with her was not really so much new feelings as it was a realization of feelings I'd been carrying, I also had been content to be her friend for all these years, and had not started our friendship with any ulterior motives - just solidarity. Bonding over common ground, supporting each other.

As concerning to me was Yan. On Corellia, and especially in the Green Hills - where the custom originated - group marriage with multiple partners was the norm. At one point in our relationship I had told Yan it wouldn't bother me if he ever took interest in another person and wanted to be intimate with them in addition to me, as long as there was open and honest communication, and Yan had told me flat-out he was not interested in anyone else. Some people felt they had to be monogamous because of cultural conditioning or feeling like it was the only "proper" way to have a relationship; that wasn't Yan's reasoning. Yan didn't judge other people for their relationships, if it was between consenting adults. Yan was, however, a creature of routine and habit. He was set in certain ways. He wasn't the kind of person who was able to juggle partners. And that was OK, I accepted that.

When I'd told Yan it would be all right for him to see other people in addition to me if he ever wanted to, and he said he wasn't interested, he also went on to say he was all right with sharing me on the same terms - open, honest communication. And I believed him - Yan isn't in the habit of saying things he doesn't mean, and indeed Yan is opinionated enough that if he had a problem, he'd make it very obvious. Nonetheless, I was uncomfortable with the idea of other partners, and some of that was just because, for a very long time, Yan was enough. When I agreed to be Lando's Chosen, it was understood that it was a one-time deal - I felt like it would be too weird and complicated to make it anything more than that.

Before Yan had entered my life, I'd had a string of relationships, some of them just fuckbuddies, some of them romantic as well as sexual, with both men and women; the longest-term partner I'd had prior to Yan was with a woman.

Even with Yan being all that I wanted or needed for a long time, I wasn't blind, and I still noticed attractive women and men. And I had been noticing Sarenya more and more, and realized that I missed the beauty of a woman's body, and doing things with that body.

I didn't want to hurt Yan. And I still loved him, still wanted him, very much. Nobody could replace Yan for me. He and I were mated for life.

But I couldn't deny that ache that I felt, for Sarenya, and what it would be like to know a woman's touch again.

I wasn't concerned about my brothers and my cousin - partner-sharing between family members was a fairly standard practice among both the Ylleni and the Lannin, and indeed, Dougras and Claer had both said more than once it would be hot if we had a foursome with Sarenya, which I'd laughed off until recently, when I started to privately concede that would be very hot.

Over the next several weeks, Sarenya and I continued to get together, as usual. And instead of my feelings going away, they got stronger. And when we hugged, we hugged for longer, and I had to fight a raging erection with every cell in my body, every ounce of the Force within me. Because of our close friendship we had a strong Force bond - we frequently said the same thing at the same time or finished each other's sentences, and one's emotional state affected the other - and I tried very, very hard to shield off my feelings, not wanting her to know. Not wanting to fuck everything up.

 

_

I'd also been trying to shield it from Yan. But of course, he'd found out. I was stupid to think he wouldn't find out, somehow, and here he was, making me look him in the eye.

"Yan," I said, "I... I'm sorry."

"For what?"

I pinched the bridge of my nose, and finally looked away. The room was swimming. My heart pounded in my ears. "I'm... in love with Sarenya. I still love you, I'm still in love with you, this doesn't change how I feel about you, and I didn't expect to fall for her too, it just happened, and I didn't want to tell you because I didn't want to hurt you, and I'm not going to act on it because I don't want to hurt you -"

"Love." Yan reached out to take my hands, and he squeezed them. He made me look at him again, and there was nothing but warmth and kindness in his dark brown eyes, crinkled at the corners. "I just want you to be happy."

I took a deep breath. "But I want you to be happy, and I don't want to hurt you -"

"I know. But what would hurt me is you denying yourself a chance of happiness, and making yourself suffer."

I started to cry, not able to help it. "I don't even know if I'd have a chance with her. I mean, we've been friends for close to twenty years? She probably just thinks of me as her dorky brother-in-law."

"Or maybe she also has feelings for you and hasn't said anything because she has the very same fears you do."

I felt myself bitchfacing through my tears. "Yan Dooku, come on now."

"Severus, do you have any idea how desirable you are? How many people have asked you to be their Chosen, and you've refused?"

"OK but -"

"I think you sell yourself short, and it's a pity. I wish you could see, and understand, what I see, when I see you. Your smile lights up the whole world."

I threw my arms around him and kissed him, passionately. He returned my kiss, and we spent the next few minutes making out like a couple of horny teenagers, and finally Yan pulled away, breathing hard, giving me a mock stern look. "We haven't finished our discussion yet," he said, "and you're not getting out of it that easily."

My hand had been groping his hard-on. I gave him that "fake innocent" look and he used the Force to give my ass a playful swat.

"Even if I had a chance with her," I said, "you're monogamous, and I don't want you to... feel lonely... be all alone if I'm visiting her -"

"Severus, how would this be significantly different from how things are now? You visit with her now, and I do other things while you visit with her. I have work, I have hobbies, I have friends. I would let you know if I thought you were neglecting me, but I don't really see a problem as far as scheduling. And if you're worried about me thinking you somehow don't love me as much... I know nothing could be further from the truth. One of the things that attracted us to each other in the first place is how opposite we are. I am a man who does best focusing on one thing - one lightsaber form, one project at a time, one partner. I know monogamy was not your style prior to being with me, just as you seem to have several projects going on at once, and you decided to study Ataru in addition to Makashi." He made a face; I had taken up Ataru just to troll him, because I loved it when he gave me That Look.

"That's the one thing you can't forgive me for, is becoming an Ataru."

"The one thing I can't forgive you for is saying you're 'an Ataru'. I am not a Makashi, I am a Makashi practitioner. You don't need to butcher grammar along with lightsaber technique."

"This is why I love you."

Yan and I laughed together - he secretly loved our banter - and then he gave me a serious look again. "You have a big heart," Yan said to me, "and I know that there is still plenty of room there for me, even if there is also space reserved for her. I..." He swallowed hard, and his eyes shone - I could feel the surge of emotions rising in him. It was one thing for him to express opinions, another thing for him to be sentimental in any way - Han had definitely gotten the "bad with feelings" from his father - but Yan felt deeply, and I could feel it now. "What we have, is strong enough to adapt to this, if this... becomes a thing. I have confidence in the years we have shared together... in what I can feel through our Force bond. I know how much you love me. I know that isn't changing."

"Thank you." I hugged him again. "I am so, so relieved."

Yan kissed my forehead, and nuzzled my hair. "Now," he said, "that part of our discussion is over."

"Can we fuck now?"

"We're not done yet."

I frowned.

"You need to tell her how you feel," Yan said.

"Oh, come on."

"What do you mean, come on? You just got done with a holocall with our son where you told him to face his fears and tell the Skywalker twins how he feels about them. And you, yourself, are just going to... not tell Sarenya how you feel?"

"It's different."

"How is it different, exactly?"

"It just is."

"No it's not."

"Is too."

"Is not."

"Is too."

"Is not."

"Is too."

"Is not."

"Is too."

"Is not."

I was startled by the sound of throat-clearing, and looked over my shoulder to see a very amused Qui-Gon Jinn, standing several meters away. Grinning, shaking with silent laughter.

"So kind of you to drop by," Yan said dryly.

"Please, don't stop on my account," Qui said. "This is the most entertainment I've had in weeks."

Yan glared at Qui. Qui's grin got bigger. Yan's glare intensified as Qui went on, "I suppose I should be the responsible adult in the room and threaten you both with a time-out -"

"You know..." Yan snapped.

"Yes. I know." Qui could no longer contain his laughter.

I laughed too, and Yan glared at me, which made Qui laugh harder. Finally Yan said, "So I take it you just wanted to say hello?"

"Yes, and see if my old Jedi Master was up for getting his arse kicked at a game of dejarik. But I can see you're in the middle of serious business..."

"Oh no," I said, "please by all means, kick his ass."

"It will be you who gets thrashed, you young whippersnapper," Yan said to Qui.

"Young?" Qui snorted.

"In my mind, you will always be twelve," Yan said, "and it doesn't help you sometimes act it."

"Says the man who was just playing 'is not' 'is too' with his husband. Like Master, like padawan, perchance?"

"Are you quite done," Yan bellowed.

"Am I ever done?" Qui smiled.

Then Qui looked at me. "Pardon me if I butt in to this conversation for a moment..."

I sighed and rolled my eyes. "Oh, Force, here we go." I folded my arms. "How much did you hear?"

"Enough."

I threw up my hands, and then they settled on my hips. "Fuck my life."

"No thank you." Qui continued, "I agree with Father. You should tell Sarenya how you feel."

I glowered. "This from the man who took decades to tell Obi-Wan how you felt."

"Yes, and I regret every moment of that, I wish I'd told him far sooner than I did. I don't want you making my same mistake."

"Fuck," I said. That was all I could say.

"It appears you're outnumbered," Yan said, giving me a smug smile.

"I hate both of you," I joked.

"Not as much as Father's going to hate me when I completely destroy him in dejarik," Qui said.

"It's good you're overconfident," Yan said. His smug smile became predatory. "Twice the pride, double the fall."

"The only fall that will happen here is all your men when I trash you."

"Go play," I said. "I have a lot to think about."

"You should call Sarenya and have a chat with her," Yan said.

"I'm not... doing that right now," I said. "I'm not ready."

Qui and Yan both gave me The Look. I gave it right back to them.

 

_

 

I still wasn't ready a month later.

Yan continued to get on my case about it, until finally I told him the more he (and Qui) pressed it, the more awkward it was for me and the more anxiety it caused me, and this was something where I was going to have to work up the nerve on my own.

And finally, the turning point came.

More and more people had been displaced by the tyranny in the Republic, and there were only so many places they could go without living in hiding, or as second-class citizens in one of the few worlds on the Outer Rim not conquered by the Republic yet.

Tython, unfortunately, was not safe for non-Force-sensitives. But Tython was one planet in a large solar system, and at one time, all of the planets in the Tythan system had been inhabited. However long after my ancient ancestors left Tython for Corellia and Yllen, the Je'daii had come in the Tho Yor from all across the Galaxy to settle upon Tython, and then non-Force-sensitive descendants of theirs had colonized the uninhabited planets in the system, most notably Shikaakwa, which was infamous as a hotbed of criminal activity, especially gangs and mobs, and Kalimahr, called "the jewel of the Tythan system", famous for commerce and culture.

There had been some discussion between the Je'daii Council and the Rebellion, about possibly setting up shop on Shikaakwa and Kalimahr - Rebellion bases, and safe zones to relocate those displaced by the war, who were not Force sensitive and could not live safely on Tython.

It was now time to put those plans into action. But we also had to assume we were going into one of two scenarios.

The first scenario was that Shikaakwa and Kalimahr would be completely abandoned by humanoid life, much as Tython was when the Ylleni and the survivors of the Corellian genocide arrived twenty years ago, and just as Tython had dangerous wildlife, we could assume the same for Shikaakwa and Kalimahr. To all accounts from the ancient records kept by Tythans and those who'd lived on other planets in the system, Shikaakwa and Kalimahr didn't have the same problems of Tython with Force-sensitive wildlife that decided whether or not you were a snack based on alignment, and Force storms and Force quakes that could be caused by the balance in the Force shifting too much to one side or the other. But even non-Force-sensitive wildlife could be dangerous to deal with, and if we were setting up safe zones for settlement, we had to make them safe, and it seemed any creature in this system was a special kind of challenge.

The other potential scenario was the more challenging and dangerous one.

When the Je'daii Order folded over twenty thousand years ago, the Je'daii who were not dead left Tython - the Jedi Order was founded on Ahch-To. But the planet was not completely uninhabited when the Jedi returned to Tython, led by Satele Shan, descended of the famous Revan and Bastila Shan. The Jedi eventually left again, this time to establish headquarters on Coruscant, and Tython had been uninhabited by humanoids, as far as we could tell, when the Yllen and then the survivors of the Corellian genocide arrived here twenty years ago. But because some settlements had survived on Tython in the seventeen thousand years or so between the fall of the Je'daii and the return of the Jedi, it was possible that Shikaakwa and Kalimahr were not completely deserted, as well.

Either way, we had our work cut out for us, and it was one that had taken months of planning. The time had finally come to put those plans into place. A special ops team from the Rebellion was going in, with a dozen trained Je'daii, first to Kalimahr, then to Shikaakwa. We would be gone for two weeks if things went well, to a month or not at all if things went badly.

And I say "we" because I was one of the Je'daii assigned to the mission. The operatives needed at least one person who had medical knowledge and could also fight, and the people most skilled in both were myself and Yan, but one of us had to stay behind to run Mahara Kesh. Moreover, Yan was the Grandmaster of the Je'daii Order itself. And even if he had not been, there was a consensus that I was the "less intimidating" of the two of us, which would be important if we had to negotiate with any inhabitants of the worlds - preferably to persuade them to allow us access of their territory or even join forces with us, even if we had to hire them to join us, but also if things got ugly, there was an element of surprise in having someone look non-threatening and turn out to be quite lethal indeed.

The night before I was set to go out on the mission, Yan fucked me so hard it was a wonder I could even walk to board the ship the next day. And at the boarding gate, Yan and I held each other for a long time, enough that we were starting to hold up the queue. Yan was holding back tears - I knew he'd fall apart later, worried about me, wondering if this was the last time he'd ever see me. He had almost tried to forbid me to go on the mission at all, but he knew that even if he had, this was for the greater good. And, more selfishly, our own survival, this life we'd built here on Tython, depended on keeping our little corner of the Galaxy safe, and we had better odds of doing that if we had a stronger Rebellion presence out here. I was doing this for the Galaxy, and I was doing this for us. He understood that - my sense of conviction was part of why he loved me.

Before I could board, Sarenya ran to me, and hugged me tight. She was all dressed up for some reason, and it surprised me that she was, in fact, crying - and I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised, since she was my best friend. I held her, not caring about the "I'm waiting" glares I was getting from the others on the mission.

Sarenya glared right back at them. "You better bring him back to me safe and whole," Sarenya threatened them. One of the Rebellion soldiers saluted her.

Our foreheads touched, and Sarenya took my face in her hands. "Survive," she told me.

I took her hands and squeezed them.

Our eyes met. I could feel Yan prodding me in the Force with an ahem. I could feel the words coming to my lips, and I started babbling. "Sarre."

Her eyes widened; it was the first time in nearly twenty years that I'd used the more intimate form of her name, as close as we were. "Sarre," I husked. "I... like..."

There were too many people watching us, and my face was burning, and I felt awkward as fuck. My mind spun, and suddenly I finished the sentence with, "Cloth. I like... cloth." My hand brushed her sleeve. "That's a really... nice... dress."

Sarenya gave me a confused look that quickly turned into A Look, and then I was being literally shoved onto the ship by one of the soldiers. "Haul ass, priest."

The mission indeed got a bit hairy, and took the better part of a month. Kalimahr was uninhabited by humanoids, but its ancient settlements hadn't survived as well as Tython did - it became apparent the old Je'daii Temples were well-preserved because of the Force - and we were not only really roughing it, but had to deal with things like carnivorous plants that had been planted as shield walls around each ancient city and were plenty hungry, and there were stampedes of bantha-like species, and the occasional pack of direwolves.

I'd always been partial to animals - I had a few cats back on Mahara Kesh - and since wolves are just dogs, I decided to try to use the Force to make friends with the wolves. I succeeded, and one of them in particular, the runt of a pack, an albino direwolf, took a shine to me and started following me around. I decided to name him Ghost.

That was when those fucking dreams started.

In those dreams I was always wearing black, standing out like a sore thumb in the white, white snow. Ghost was my faithful companion, and sometimes, a large man named Sam, who seemed like my brother but wasn't. Everyone called me Jon, sometimes Crow, sometimes Lord Commander, sometimes Bastard. In some of my dreams there was a woman with silver hair, who bitchfaced the same exact way my husband did, and had that same confident, instant leader personality my husband did, and was determined to get justice and set the world right the same way my husband did, and rode dragons the same way my husband did. She felt very much like my husband, but in a female body, and I kept calling her something that sounded like Daenerys. In other of my dreams there was a wild woman with red hair, and I had been sent to infiltrate her people but found myself sympathizing with them and trying to make peace between our people, and I loved her, and she loved me. And she died in my arms, and then I died, stabbed to death, and then I was brought back, and there was war, and more war. And always my wolf.

I couldn't just leave him behind on Kalimahr, and I figured it would be good to take him to Shikaakwa in case things got funky there.

Shikaakwa was not uninhabited, but it did not have a large population. However, there were still more of them than there were of us, and by "them" I mean camps, somewhat reminiscent of the Wildling settlements of my dreams, but with diverse humanoid species and blasters and cannons. They weren't so advanced that they had been able to de-isolate themselves - all the ships that had been on Shikaakwa left over twenty-thousand years ago, and much of the technology with it, so they had no idea there had even been a re-settlement on Tython. But they were advanced enough to be a threat to us, and here was where the Force-sensitive Je'daii on the mission came in handy. We managed to de-escalate things after some days, and held a moot with each of the tribal leaders, promising them handsome rewards if they let us build there, and wished to fight for us. Negotiations were still sometimes tense, yet by the end of it, a couple of the Shikaakwan leaders were willing to go back to Tython to discuss further terms with us, if we left a couple of hostages behind in exchange. Mace Windu was one of those who elected to stay behind as a hostage, and after it was promised he would be treated well, we would be back in a week to drop off the tribal leaders and take him home.

I arrived on Tython with Ghost - before I could hug and kiss Yan in greeting, Ghost jumped on him and tackled him to the ground, licking his face and beard, then flopping over to demand pettings.

"Hello," Yan said, rubbing the wolf's belly. "...Ghost?"

Yan and I looked at each other - I hadn't told him the wolf's name, and even though we were Force bonded, that wasn't information he'd be able to extract that quickly. I remembered the dreams, and how much this Daenerys had reminded me of Yan, and that was the confirmation I needed - somewhere, at some point in time, Yan had been a woman named Daenerys, and she knew Ghost.

Yan had some reservations about bringing Ghost back to Mahara Kesh with our cats, but I used the Force to convince Ghost to be nice to the cats, and sure enough when we arrived, Ghost rolled on his back in a submissive position, allowing the cats to sniff him, and eventually start grooming him. That night, the cats snuggled on or next to Ghost.

As pent up as Yan and I had both been over the last almost-month of my mission, I was exhausted. I hadn't had a proper shower since I left Tython, and though I'd had a hygiene kit, it wasn't the same thing. I stunk, and I just needed to feel the shower. So after watching my cats curl up with Ghost, I stepped into the shower, and not long after I was passed out in Yan's arms.

We did make slow, gentle love early the next morning, and then at breakfast Yan told me, "Sarenya was here last night to see you."

"Oh, shit." I felt bad that I'd just wanted to shower and sleep when I got back.

"She understood you weren't feeling well, but she insists upon seeing you soon."

"Good."

Yan gave me a small smile. "She came to visit me a couple of times when you were gone, and we discussed you."

"You better not have told her -"

"I didn't, because... it's not my place to tell. But as much as I know you don't want me to nag you about this... please do tell her. You should have told her before you left. We were all worried you... wouldn't come back." Yan frowned.

I sighed. I felt guilty. And he was right. If I had died on that mission, I would have regretted not telling her. Even though it was taking a risk of fucking up our friendship. We were also close enough that I was starting to feel guilty for keeping this from her, when Sarenya and I had shared so much with each other, had let our guard down about so much, had been honest about things we wouldn't dare reveal in public. I felt like I'd been lying to her, and it was time to clear the air.

I went to a briefing at Akar Kesh, the Temple of Balance, and Sarenya was there as one of the Je'daii Masters of Bodhi, Temple of the Arts. After the meeting, Sarenya and I made our way to the cafe on the Akar Kesh grounds, as we often did following a Council meeting, and she insisted on treating me since she'd been worrying about me the entire time I was gone.

Our pastries and tea came, and I had a mouthful of scone when Sarenya said, "So, before you left, you said something really weird."

"What?"

"You said 'I like cloth.'"

My face burned. "Oh, that. You were... wearing a nice dress."

"That's a weird way to compliment a dress."

I sighed.

Sarenya gave me an expectant look.

"All right," I said. I looked around nervously, to make sure we weren't being watched. Then I said, "Sarre, I love you."

"I love you too, Sev."

"No... I mean... you don't get it. I know you love me as a friend, but I, like, love you love you."

"You love me love me? What kind of Basic is that?" Sarenya teased.

Ghost had fucking followed me to the cafe, and was whining now, wanting table scraps. "You've got to be shitting me," I said under my breath.

"Oh that's a big... dog." Sarenya started petting him, and Ghost kissed her face all up. Sarenya couldn't resist ribbing me further. "You love me love me, so what's his name... Moon Moon?"

"You know..."

Sarenya gave me that trollish grin, and I kicked her under the table, and she kicked me back, harder... and then her foot slid up my leg, and I almost choked on my scone as I felt my cock start to harden. We finished our tea and pastries, and then left a tip and Sarenya gestured for me to get up.

"Follow me. We should continue this conversation in private."

We each grabbed some water, and then went for a walk in the redwoods near Akar Kesh, with Ghost following behind us. For the first ten minutes or so we didn't say anything, and then finally Sarenya sat on a log and gestured for me to sit next to her. She threw a stick and Ghost went to fetch.

"I have feelings for you," I said. "I've... been in love with you for awhile now, and I've been terrified of saying anything because I don't want to fuck up our friendship. But at the same time... we've always been really real with each other, and it... was time to tell you." I hung my head. "I'm sorry, I know you probably don't feel the same way -"

"I do," Sarenya said.

My head snapped up, and I looked into her eyes.

Sarenya took my hands in hers. "I'm in love with you, too, Sev. And I've also been afraid of saying anything about it to you, for that, and I didn't want to step on Yan's toes."

"I'd talked to him about it and..."

"I'd also talked to him." Sarenya nodded. "He didn't tell me how you felt, but he told me he was OK with... you and I... being together."

"I see."

Sarenya stroked my face. "I was hoping to say something before you left. I got all dressed up, wanting to... look pretty for you..."

"You looked... fucking hot." I noticed she had the same dress on, which was probably not a coincidence. "You... still look hot, damn."

Sarenya smiled, and laughed. "And when you started saying 'I like' I got my hopes up. But then you had to go and say, 'I like cloth.'"

"Yeah. I'm, uh, smooth as fuck." I licked my thumb and index finger, and then ran them over my eyebrows, and waggled my eyebrows, and Sarenya gave that full-bodied laugh I loved so much.

"You're a dork, but I wouldn't be in love with you if you weren't."

I smiled.

We sat for a moment, and Ghost brought back the stick, and Sarenya threw it again for him to go fetch. Then Sarenya said, "You really think I look..."

"Yes. That dress is lovely on you."

"I made it myself," Sarenya said, sounding bashful all of a sudden.

"You did great work." I bit my lower lip. "I'd like to rip it off of you."

Sarenya kissed me then, and I did just that, and soon we were laying in the grass, writhing together frantic and feverish, in heat for each other. At some point it started to rain, and the sight of Sarenya disheveled and glistening drove me even wilder. At last we lay there, spent, and the rain subsided into a drizzle, and when I looked up, a rainbow was arching in the sky over us, and the sun was starting to set, which made the sight even more magnificent. At this time of day the fireflies started to come out in this part of the woods, and they danced around us, and the magic and wonder of the moment brought me close to tears.

"The land is happy," Sarenya said, and we kissed.

When we pulled apart, I noticed she was literally glowing, and it wasn't just from the fireflies. I was glowing too, and my hands felt like they were pulsing. Sarenya was laying on top of me and I put my arms around her, kissing her again as my hands trailed down her back.

Ghost started whining - he was hungry, and it was time for us to get a move on. I loved that wolf, but I was slightly annoyed at him disrupting the romantic moment. I was also still brain-melted from the sex, because I heard myself saying, "Goddammit, Moon Moon."

Sarenya howled with laughter. "I thought his name was Ghost."

"I don't think I can even remember my own name right now."

We got up to put our clothes on - in Sarenya's case, a towel that she always brought with her helped cover the immodesty of her ripped dress - but before she put it on, I noticed the Khid Linnad ink on her back, which I'd seen before since she'd worn backless apparel and I'd given her routine medical examinations and procedures... but something about it was different, and upon closer look...

"The ink on your back. It's... wow, it's really bright and vibrant."

When we got back to Akar Kesh, Sarenya examined it in a mirror, and then she broke down crying, and I held her for awhile, letting her cry on me. I'd known enough about the Khid Linnad from my brother Dougras - one of their commanders - to know the ink was imbued with the Living Force enough that it tended to morph on a person's body, and Sarenya herself had told me that her ink was, for some time, faded, reflecting what had happened to her people, and she herself.

We hadn't just shared feelings, and passion and ecstasy... we hadn't just mated physically, we had mated spiritually, and shared something sacred. I was awed enough to cry a little, too.

Yan told me it would be all right to spend the night with Sarenya, and we spent that night making love until the sun came up, exploring each other, glad to be alive together. We had both lost our homeworlds, and most of our people, and yet we were here on our ancient homeworld, among our ancestors, and we were building something new.

We were building hope.

 

_

 

The next morning I stumbled home. I made sure to check with Yan that he wasn't upset, and he wasn't, and Ghost wasn't mad that I'd left him behind that night, though the cats were slightly miffed, forgiving me when I produced treats.

I went about my usual business as a doctor, and after our evening meal, I decided to take a bubble bath - another luxury I'd missed on my mission.

I came back to our bedroom in just a towel, with pajamas laid out... and Yan came in, as if this had been timed. The next thing I knew, I was face down ass up on the bed, in restraints.

"Safeword if you need it," Yan growled.

My cock throbbed in response.

It throbbed harder as Yan spanked my ass over and over again, telling me how naughty I was, making me confess who my ass belonged to. I whined and begged him to fuck me, and he spent the longest time teasing me with just the tip, then rubbing his cock in my ass crack, getting me more and more worked up. When he finally pushed into me, I almost came right then and there.

Yan usually liked to fuck me slowly, edging me close to orgasm and then stopping to tease, building me up again and again until I shattered. There was none of his usual finesse, he just pounded into me from behind, letting me have it. "How hard did you fuck her?" he rasped.

"Harder," I told him.

He fucked me harder.

"Not hard enough."

We loved it. He destroyed my ass as hard as Sarenya had ridden my cock, and I howled and screamed so hard I think half of Tython heard me. I came intensely enough to pass out, and woke up with the restraints off, cradled in Yan's arms, unable to do much other than smile stupidly and make contented purring noises.

"And this, my pet, is one of the reasons why I have no problem with sharing you with her," Yan said, kissing the tip of my nose. "It creates some interesting possibilities for me to take charge of you."

"I like it when you take charge of me," I said, and kissed him. Then I rolled him onto his back. "You know what, though? You're fucking whipped."

It was my turn to tease him, caressing and kissing, licking him all over. Sarenya's beautiful female body had given me a whole new appreciation for my husband's male body, and I admired it, worshiped it, for as long as he could stand it, before I rode him slowly, and then less slowly, until we exploded together.

"I love you," I whispered, tracing lazy circles over his heart, next to my face resting in his chest.

"I love you, Sev. So very much."

"Remember that no matter what," I said, "we belong together."

"You're mine," he said, "and I'm yours."

 

_

 

"You're mine." Sarenya growled, rubbing against me, slicking me with her juices, marking me as her territory... hers alone, except to share with Yan.

I loved it. I loved her scent as much as I loved her taste, loved watching her tease herself as she teased me, before at last, mercifully, straddling my hips and sinking down on me.

We were in the forest again, feeding the land with the Living Force... and nourishing each other. Here was love, here was life.

We lay there, under the stars, under the two moons of Tython, light and dark, watching the fireflies and the bioluminescent mushrooms and lizards and night-blooming flowers. Sarenya told me their names, and her favorite one.

"That's a beautiful flower," I said, and then, more softly, "but yours is prettier."

I pleasured her again, with my mouth, and then I was inside her again, and finally at last we were spent, and not able to make words for awhile. When she was able to speak, again, she said, "I'll walk you home."

"I can't move right now." I laughed, and so did she.

"Yes, but... your furball is waiting for you." A snicker. "And Ghost, too."

I laughed harder. It felt good to laugh. I pet her hair, and kissed the top of her head. "Thank you, my love."

"Thank you." She nuzzled me.

The next day Sarenya came to visit me at Mahara Kesh, and played with Ghost for awhile. While Ghost wasn't aggressive towards the other Tythans, there was a difference between non-aggression and affection - there were few people Ghost wasn't wary of, and he loved Sarenya, and she loved him right back.

"So I hear the negotiations with the Shikaakwan leaders are going well," Sarenya said.

I nodded. "We're bringing them back tomorrow, ahead of schedule. Mace will be glad to come home." I rubbed Ghost's head. "I'll miss you, big boy."

"Oh, no no no. You are taking your damn direwolf with you. Even if it doesn't seem like trouble... just take him to be on the safe side."

I smirked. "What are you, my mama?"

"No," Sarenya said, "just someone who wouldn't... deal well... if I lost you."

I knew she'd lost a lot, in her life. I pulled her hand and dragged her onto the couch; she flomped next to me and leaned on me, silently crying.

When our eyes met, Sarenya said, through her tears, "You better come back to me."

"I will."

Sarenya stroked my face. "I can't lose you again."

A moment of silence and then I said, "You say... 'again.'"

Sarenya nodded. "You know our people both believe in other lives, other worlds than these."

"Yeah." I nodded. "I... oh boy." I pinched the bridge of my nose. "When I found Ghost, I started dreaming about one of them. And he was there before. I guess he found his way to me again, haha."

"Go on."

I sighed. "I only remember bits and pieces but what I remember is... a doozy. I looked a bit like this except my ears weren't pointy, my hair was dark and curly, I had a beard, and I was, uh, kinda short. I wore black a lot. I was Lord Commander of something called the Night's Watch, and then my watch had ended and I was King in the North... which is funny because that's the same title I had on Corellia."

Sarenya was wearing that sabacc face, but her eyes were riveted, intense.

"I had two, uh, wives, then. One I'm pretty sure was Yan, she acted a lot like him, even had silver hair. The other was... wild. Red hair. Fiery. My first love." I closed my eyes, remembering her dying in my arms, with an arrow through her. We should have stayed in that cave. "I don't know what's up with that."

"It's because..." Sarenya took a deep breath. "You know nothing, Jon Snow."

I kissed her hard and hungry, taking both our breath away. We fucked right there on the couch, and then we laughed and cried together, and then Sarenya reached to stroke my face.

"When we made love the first time and it... fed my ink," Sarenya said, "there's a story to that, more than anything I've told you about me thus far."

I braced myself.

"Do you remember when I delivered Luke and Leia? And something had gone wrong with the pregnancy, and I had to... give a piece of my soul to give Leia life?"

I nodded solemnly.

Sarenya sighed, and shuddered. I could feel the cringe, the wave of pain, across our Force bond. She showed me mental images - darkness, something Not the Force that wanted to prey on Leia, keep her from incarnating at all. And she had fought it, held it at bay... but when she did, every version of her across every universe died.

"And I could see it. I could feel it. Hundreds upon thousands of deaths, all at once, none of them like the others, but all of them bad. And all of that, all at once... it almost killed me, here, too. Slowly. The shock of the revelation, the madness, sucking the life out of me, draining me. Claer helped me stabilize. But even now... it hurts."

Her hands took mine; her hands were very cold, all of a sudden, and I used the Force, used the fire within me, pushing it into her. "One of them... I died in a lover's arms, I'd been shot to death with an arrow by someone in his camp."

"Ygritte."

"Yes."

I broke down and wept, remembering. Not just the death itself, but the way I'd laid her to rest, carrying her out into the forest to burn her body on a pyre. And then the soul-sucking, hopeless grief. Being brought back from the dead, and wishing I was still dead, because for a time we had been reunited in the Force...

"My people believe, as do yours, that just because people were together in a past life, or another universe, doesn't mean that they're obligated to be together this time around," she said. "True love means loving each other for what we are, here and now, not what we were, before."

I nodded.

"And yet... I do love you now... and I had loved you before, so much."

"So do I," I said. I continued crying. "It's so good to have you back." My arms tightened around her. "It's so good to have both of you, the two loves of my life."

"This is important," Sarenya said. "The Force brought us back to each other for a reason. I don't know what. I just know that... we have to get it right, somehow. We have to fix things here. All of us, working together."

"We will."

My brother, Claer, had chosen that moment to show up, unannounced. "Get back to work," he teased us.

Chapter Text

Sev

It was the second night this week I woke up in the middle of the night with a start, sitting up, heart racing in my ears, trembling in a cold sweat as images from the dreams I'd just broken out of flashed in my mind's eye.

After my trip to Shikaakwa and Kalimahr where I'd come back with my direwolf Ghost, and had my first glimpse of myself in another world, the dreamvisions had been occasional. Once every couple of months, at most. I continued to see myself as Jon, and my husband as a woman named Daenerys, and there was a third Targaryen, a relation we didn't know we had, silver eyes, come from Dorne in the south to challenge our claim to the Iron Throne, clashing swords with him, until we decided to take him into our bed and settle with a sword fight of a different kind. My beloved, my queen had lost one of her dragons to the Night King, but the three of us restored him to life together, and once we'd defeated the army of the dead and put our kingdom at peace with a new and better form of governance, we rode off on our three dragons to a house with a red door and a lemon tree.

I didn't tell Yan of these dreams, because what of them? Sarenya had been Ygritte and died in that world, died in my arms. That was there and then, this was here and now, things were different.

And yet, the dreams would not go away. As time went on they became more frequent, and led to new dreams - glimpses into yet other worlds than these.

In one set of recurring dreams I found myself in a female body. Blue skin, red eyes, long dark hair. A species I'd never heard of before, but kept hearing the word "Chiss" used to describe me. A name close to my own - Sev'rance. Yan was there, of all things a Sith Lord named Tyranus, and I was the commander of his army. He was fighting a corrupt Republic, and the even more corrupt Jedi, and trying to change the Sith from within into something more a darker shade of grey than evil. We kept our relationship secret - I would not have the Separatist forces think I became General Sev'rance Tann because I was fucking their leader, when I had gotten where I did before any of that, and without any of that. The relationship came of mutual respect.

I was with child - his child - when I was slain in duel with a Jedi Master, whose padawan I had killed.

In yet another set of worlds I was named Severin, male, dark curly hair, green eyes, pointy ears. Often, but not always, from Yllen, Sarenya's homeworld. Sometimes from someplace called Alameen, that I remembered Obi-Wan mentioning once or twice.

In yet another set of worlds I was named Sören, male, dark curly hair, dark eyes, human, from a place called Earth. This was particularly amusing to me because Earth is fictional. I remembered back on Corellia, there were holovision programs set on Earth, such as a sitcom about an orange-skinned dictator named Trump who was always firing people and talking about "grabbing women by the pussy" yet somehow had been elected as a world leader. He couldn't possibly be real, could he? He seemed too ridiculous to be real. Earth, itself, seemed too ridiculous to be real. It made no sense that I could be incarnate on a fictional world.

I was having a dream about being Sören again, this time. I remembered looking into a pair of deep purple eyes, not human, and the man with the purple eyes held out a goblet of wine mixed with blood. His own blood. He was giving me a gift.

He was giving me and Dooku both a gift.

I drank from it and that night I ran a high fever, out of my mind with delirium. The silver eyes from the first set of dreams, what seemed like a long time ago now, were watching over us. I was having dreams within the dream, seeing wars with strange creatures I couldn't have imagined, then my parents - dead in every universe - a flash into the future of finding my father's sword. Waking up and catching a knife thrown at me to test my new reflexes. Feeling strange, wild power, an increase in my connection to...

...The Force.

And then it was as if Sören himself could feel me, as I felt him, across the worlds, across the multiverse, and didn't know what to make of me any more than I knew what to make of him. That was when I woke up, as if Sören pushed me out of his head, frightened by what he was awakening. Not ready to see what I had seen, know what I knew - and yet still didn't quite understand, after all this time. It was too new, too fresh, too raw.

Get thee gone.

"It's all right Sören," I replied, then realized I was speaking aloud in our room, in the dark, and Sören wasn't there, but Yan very much was, and I had woken him up now.

"Hm?" Yan mumbled, still sleepy.

"Shit, I'm sorry." I patted him. I lay back down, but I was still shaken up... still shaking. Gross and clammy with sweat.

I got up to go to the fresher, just to run the water and put my hands under it, splash water on my face to ground myself. It only sort of worked, so I decided to make my way out of the Temple and onto the beach. The high tide was coming in, and I let it wash over my feet. In the glow of Ashla and Bogan, I watched as the bioluminescent crabs wandered onto shore, for their once a month mating ritual. An empty shell washed at my feet and I picked it up, smiling at how it glowed in the light.

I brought it to my ear to hear the ocean. Then in my mind's eye, I saw Yan - but not this Yan, he was wearing a dark tunic and trousers with a brown cape, blowing in the ocean breeze, holding a seashell just as I was now, watching the sunset with pain in his eyes. In the end, all we ever are, is alone.

Another distant shore. Long dark hair stirring in the wind, the silver eyes from my dreams, a harp playing the saddest melody I'd ever heard, even though there was nothing playing out loud where I stood, and I only heard it for just a moment. Graceful hands, one of them badly burned. Alone.

I didn't know who this was, and I didn't quite know the other version of Yan, either, but I felt myself reaching out. Not alone.

The silver eyes fixed on me, and then I started moving out into a wave, having to strive against the undertow. I made it back to shore, now partially wet from sea water, not just sweat, but it didn't feel gross in the way the sweat did. However, whatever "mental holonet connection" I'd made was broken, at least for now. I was more relieved by that than anything else.

I went back to the Temple and decided to shower off, as quickly and quietly as possible, since Yan had gone back to sleep. I crawled back in bed beside him and meditated, trying to calm down enough to resume sleep myself. But I couldn't, lying there awake until the dawn rose.

Yan noticed at breakfast. "You look exhausted," he observed.

"Yeah, that would be because I am exhausted." I frowned into my porridge. "I didn't sleep well last night."

Yan leaned back in his chair. "Is something the matter?"

"Just... a lot of weird dreams. That are getting closer together in timing, and worse in their weirdness. I don't know what to do anymore, like I could take sedatives at night to sleep, but what if the Force is trying to tell me something important and I miss it, you know?"

Yan sipped tea, stroking his beard in thought, and then he said, "Have you talked to anyone else about it?"

"Just Sarre, only when it started."

"You haven't talked to your brother?"

"Which one?"

Yan smirked, then gave me a more serious look. "The one who has the strange relationship with time."

"That would mean going to Anil Kesh. One does not simply walk into Anil Kesh."

"They should be able to if they're family. I think you should go see your brother and get his input. And by think, I mean doctor's orders." Yan wagged his spoon at me.

I couldn't resist. "I like it when you order me around."

"In that case..." Yan scooted his chair back and tapped his knees. "I can help you get your mind off things for awhile. Come here, pet."


_


"It's not every day you ask me to pilot you around," Han said, looking over his shoulder at me.

"Well, I feel safer with you being the one to fly us over the Chasm." I patted him. "Besides, you haven't seen my brother in awhile, either."

Han blushed at that; Claer had been his Chosen, what seemed like ages ago now even though it had been just over a decade and that wasn't even a drop in the bucket for my people. "Yeah, well... I've been, er, busy." He ran a nervous hand through his hair.

"So I hear." I grinned. "So a lot of people hear, from what I understand."

"MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMM."

"What? People make sex noises. I make sex noises. There's no shame in that, especially if you're giving your partners a good time -"

"I KNOW. I JUST." Han's blush deepened. "DO WE HAVE TO TALK ABOUT THIS RIGHT FRICKIN' NOW."

"Now's a good time as any, since it's just us." I folded my arms. "When are you going to ask the Skywalker twins to marry you?"

"MOTHER. COULD YOU NOT."

"Not what?"

"Not. Do that... that thing." Han lifted his hands up from the console for a moment. "That thing you do with... trying to be helpful. It's not helping."

"I don't understand why it's a problem for me to ask you when you're asking them, considering I know how you feel about them, and know you want to spend the rest of your life with them."

"MOM, I SWEAR I WILL HIT THE FUCKING EJECT BUTTON."

"Is that what you're calling it now?"

"MOTHER."

The Millennium Falcon passed over the Chasm of Anil Kesh - a breathtaking view that was also potentially lethal. High up on an arch over the Chasm was the Temple of Science, where my brother Claer Inari - my fraternal triplet - was Master. Most of his work was fairly tame, breeding rancor dragons and growing exotic psychoactive plants. But he was also investigating the portal systems that had brought us to Tython in the first place, various other pieces of curious technology found around the planet, and ancient maps to parts of the Galaxy considered lost, including claiming to have excavated a piece of a map to the Star Forge, whatever the kriff that was.

When Han and I arrived at Anil Kesh, we had to stop at the check-in, but were given clearance as soon as I provided my identification, proving my relation to the Temple Master. Droids led the way to where Claer had a lab session with a few students, demonstrating alchemy, turning a rusty bolt into a glowing crystal cluster with the right ingredients and applied Force energy.

When he saw me his face lit up. "Sev! Come here and be my assistant."

"Uh. Right now?"

"No, fifty years from now." You could never tell whether that sort of statement was a joke from him or he was actually being serious - or perhaps, both - and he used the Force to nudge me forward and push me into a lab coat. Once the lab coat was on, I stood beside him at the cauldron. He handed me the crystal cluster he'd just produced from the cauldron, which was throbbing and a little too hot to hold.

"Put it back in the cauldron," he said.

"Why?"

"Just." He gave me an aggravated look. "Do it."

I threw it in the cauldron, which hissed and spat liquid at me, making me flinch and step back because I didn't know what the fuck was coming at me. Claer laughed at my reaction before using the Force to shove goggles on my face. "All right bitches," he said, "we're about to do SCIENCE."

He handed me two small beakers, one filled with dark liquid like ink, one filled with a white substance that made me give him a look, while Han tried not to laugh and failed, and Claer glared across the room. "It's not that," he said.

I heard my son tell my brother via telepathy, Too bad, because I'd want to drink it.

Wow, I told them both in the Force. Get a room.

"Put the fuckin' liquid in the cauldron, Sev," Claer said.

So professional. I did as I was told, and there was a loud pop, and more water spitting at me. The cauldron was bubbling faster now, and it smelled bad.

"Do Force Heal," Claer told me.

"I..." I looked at the cauldron and back at him. "That's not a living thing like a plant or animal or person. I..."

"Just do it, Sev."

I put out my hands and began to let the Force flow through me, my hands heating up, watching them glow, and then I was glowing all over, and when I closed my eyes I could only see the light, until it changed colors, like an aurora, and I heard the starsong. In the back of my mind I heard that harp melody again, haunting me, and my hands shook. I tried to refocus my attention, but the light was changing now, the aurora shot through with silver, the sea reflecting, roaring.

I opened my eyes and a rose was growing out of the cauldron, white tipped with red. Claer plucked it from the cauldron and handed it to me. "That... wasn't quite the intended result," he told me, "but," he addressed his students, "this is also an important example of the volatile nature of Force alchemy, and how no two recipes will behave exactly the same way for exactly the same people, and indeed, if you work in pairs or groups... it has even more potential for chaos. It can be beautiful chaos." He took the rose from me and brandished it like a wand or a sword, before handing it back to me. "Or it can be deadly." The rose pricked my finger, and he held my bleeding finger over the cauldron, which bubbled over, and started to spark.

"We'll take an hour break," Claer said to his students, "and then meet me at the greenhouse."

When it was just me, Claer, and Han in the lab, I looked at Han and said, "Can you give me a few minutes alone with my brother, please?"

Han nodded. His eyes met Claer's - there was a lot between them unsaid, but they needed to say some things. Claer nodded in acknowledgment and Han shuffled off.

Claer pulled out two chairs for us and gestured for me to sit down. "This must be important because you never come here," he said.

"Yeah, I'm sorry about that," I said. "I'm usually busy with patients and you're..." I made an awkward motion with my hands. "You've got research and shit, I don't want to get in the way of that."

"Everyone says that," Claer said softly. "Sometimes I wish people would get in my way."

I wanted to hug him tight - those words made me feel the sting of guilt, I needed a better relationship with my own blood than this. Claer was weird, but wasn't everyone, around here? I swallowed hard, not wanting to act on my urge and have some big emotional scene that would eat the time he had for break and derail my purpose for coming here. "So, Claer, I've been having some weird shit happen to me and Yan told me you were probably the guy to come to for weird shit."

"Probably." Claer nodded. "Though it depends on the kind of weird shit."

"Well this is possibly the kind you specialize in since you're into, like... science." I felt like such an inarticulate idiot sometimes, especially saying things like "like, science". My brother was a genius, researching new species and ancient technology, and I just stitched people up and tried to make them feel better. "You know a lot about the Galaxy... a whole bunch of different worlds, even worlds that were thought to be lost but are still out there." I took a deep breath. "There are other Galaxies, right? And other worlds?"

"Billions and billions."

"Our people have a belief that many of us lived other lives before the one we're living now, or may also be living on another world than this one, as we're here right now."

"Other universes."

"Yeah. Is that possible?"

"Yes."

"How do you know for sure?" I knew how Sarenya had known for sure - all her other selves died, and she saw it and felt it. But that was just one experience, and science meant testing something repeatedly.

"Well, we don't quite," Claer said. "But there's something I found with the piece of the map to the Star Forge that makes me think there's truth to it."

"Oh?"

Claer had me come to his office. There was a holocron that was partially intact - some of it had been erased, whether deliberately or by damage over time.

"What am I looking at?" I asked.

"After the initial settlement on Tython ended, there was a revival by a Jedi named Satele Shan, and the Order was here for some time. It eventually moved back to Coruscant, but they'd left some things behind, and this was found in a safe belonging to Satele Shan. Whether it was forgotten, or left here for future generations to discover - we don't know. What we do know is that there's a few valuable things here, one of which being journal logs from her ancestors Bastila Shan and her husband, Revan. Revan's journal is of particular importance."

Claer brought the piece of the Star Forge map onto a holoviewer. "In Revan's journal logs, he mentions something he used called the Mass Shadow Generator. He'd used it to stop a war - killing millions to save trillions - but it was enough to create a wound in the Force, and the wound was such that it did things to his closest associates. Things went terribly wrong for everyone he was personally connected to, within the span of a few years. By the time he'd figured out what was happening it was already too late, so he, his companion Darth Malak, and their teacher Darth Traya, performed Sith alchemy - an eldritch ritual called the Cross of Changes which effectively reboots the universe by allowing you to make one change. You can control what that action is, but once that action has been made, you have no control over the outcome."

Claer leaned forward and folded his arms. "Revan, Malak, and Traya worked together to make four changes in the universe, which was unprecedented, and expended a tremendous amount of energy doing so."

"How come they got to make four, if they were three people?"

"Because Traya had effectively died and become someone else."

I chewed on that information, already not liking where this was going.

Claer went on. "The massive amount of Force energy produced in the initial working -"

"Initial working. There was more than one?"

"Yes, and you're getting ahead of me." Claer made a "zip it" motion over his lips. "The massive amount of Force energy produced had an effect on the three Sith Lords performing the working. Darth Malak in particular started getting visions of the future, and he saw that their enemy Valkorion knew what they did and was countering them by making another universe and making things bleed over. So they had to do the working again, with a modification to push the changes outward instead of keeping them contained inward. And again. Making more universes. More and more universes stacked together." Claer waved his hand over the piece of the Star Forge map, floating above the holoviewer, now slowly rotating. "This isn't just a literal map of a physical location, this is a map of the universes, where they are in proportion of when they were created and what four variables were changed each time." Claer rubbed his face and sighed. "They did the working so many times, and then the universes just started to multiply on their own, or maybe with help that wasn't from them. We don't know just yet. We only know that... that." He waved his hand over the map again. "Those are the universes we even know about, here at Anil Kesh. We only have some of the information."

"But they'd tried to fix things?"

Claer nodded. "Revan, Malak, Traya, the people they loved... all reported sharing lifetimes together. Their souls are bound together, like a wheel. They were looking out for the interests of their future incarnations. The future incarnations of their friends and loved ones." His eyes met mine. "Like yourself."

My jaw dropped. I didn't know what to say. So I said nothing.

"So if you're having dreams about yourself in other places, or even yourself as other selves but it feels like it's happening right now..." Claer steepled his hands. "That's why. Some of the changes that were made... you and others would end up on different homeworlds, as different species. Like you're from the Green Hills of Corellia here, one of the Lannin, but you might be something else elsewhere -"

Like an Earth human. I nodded.

"And if that applies to you, that applies to more than one of us. It's like we got picked up and moved around by a giant spaceship, but that spaceship is the Force itself."

I found my words, but only two of them. "And what?"

"What do you mean, and what?"

I rubbed my forehead. I was definitely way too tired from last night, and too tired for this shit. "What do we do? Why are we here, wherever 'here' ends up being?"

"To close the wound in the Force that manifested in each universe, in the way it manifested. The changes made it, uh... different from place to place. It's more severe in some locations than others. And sometimes one universe can contaminate another."

Sometimes. I thought of the way Sarenya had died everywhere but here, and shuddered. I thought of my parents, always dead.

I thought of the war going on right now, against the Republic. The genocide against my people, our people. Wondered if something like it was happening elsewhere, or even something worse. Like the dead walking, feeding on the living, wherever Jon was or is. "This is so fucked."

"It is, and I'm sorry." Claer's eyes met mine again. "I was Darth Malak. I am partially responsible for this. But I promise you, we will fix things here, somehow. If our enemies could make our pain bleed out across universes... maybe we can let the sunshine through, as well."


_


I gave Han some alone time with Claer, and then we were back in the Falcon. I didn't have a lot to say, and neither did he.

Once we were out of the Chasm, though, I told him, "I don't want to go straight home yet."

"No?"

I shook my head. "No, I want to go to Bodhi. I need to see Sarre."

I also needed to see my cousin Gweir, who was a bard, and trained bards at Bodhi, the Temple of Arts. He was sitting in the standing stones near the Exile Trees, with his own group of students. I recognized Tindo, one of Sarenya's younger kinsmen, who was Han and Lando's age, his long bronze hair gleaming in the sunshine. He was a handsome lad, someone who I might well have had a few romps with if it wouldn't have made things awkward for both Han and Lando. Especially Lando.

I waited for Gweir's class to finish, trying to be unobtrusive. When the class was dismissed and the students started roaming out, Tindo saw me and my son and made a beeline for us. He hugged Han. "Hey there!"

"What's up, man?" Han made an "air harp" motion. "How's the music? You must be getting laid plenty."

Tindo laughed. "I get laid more than Lando does, at least."

I heard Lando's voice then, who had apparently come to Bodhi to visit his foster mother, and his head was peeking out the back of the Temple. "Man, fuck you Tindo," Lando said.

"Time and place," Tindo teased, blowing him a kiss.

I snickered. Tindo took my hand and kissed it. "Always a pleasure, Sev," he said, a twinkle in his grey eyes. "Would you like to witness my latest performance, later?"

There was definitely innuendo, there, and my face burned even though I'd probably had at least twice as much experience. "Er," was all I could make out.

A clear of the throat, though I could feel Sarenya's eyes before I ever heard her. "Tindómion," she said, "you and Tellando should do something useful like, I don't know, all this laundry you've been piling up the last few days. Then maybe run to the store, since you've both been eating us out of house and home."

Lando and Tindo both cackled, silently mouthing the word "eating", and Sarenya's glare intensified. "Get going," she commanded. They both gave her the Rebellion salute, even though neither of them were soldiers in the Rebellion and neither was she.

"On that note..." Han looked at me. "Can I leave you here and go out to see Luke and Leia? And Aunt Sarre or Uncle Gweir can bring you back?"

"Sure," I said, "if that's no trouble."

"No trouble at all," Sarenya said, wrapping an arm around my waist.

Gweir came over to us then, all smiles. "Cousin!" He took my hands and squeezed them. "What brings you here?"

"You mean besides the usual?" Sarenya gave me a hopeful look, and I winked at her, feeling the old familiar thrust in my loins.

"I went to see Claer," I explained, "and I had... quite a discussion with him."

We went inside.

I told them what Claer had told me, and then I asked, "I mean, the Force can't expect us all to go on some grand mission... quest... thing from on high in every single fucking universe ever, can it?"

Gweir pondered this, stroking his beard. Finally he said, "Claer says the wound isn't the same everywhere, so the severity isn't the same everywhere. In some universes, changing the tide, closing the wound, might be as simple as giving a random stranger a kind word, that keeps that person from killing themselves, and perhaps that person turns out to have a child who cures a mass plague or makes world peace that sets the stage for peace between multiple worlds. And in other universes, like this one... it might be taking up arms in a literal war against the forces of evil, like the Republic and the Jedi Order have become."

I thought of Sören in particular, on some planet I'd thought of as fictional, the thought now occurring to me that maybe in his universe where he was, was real, and where I was from was considered fictional. I thought of Jon and Daenerys and their lover, the third dragon rider, and randomly wondered if official fiction was but one version of a story, and the real stories were not told to the masses.

I thought of Sören's brief vision of the future, the bronze sword that gleamed in his hands, inscribed with some sort of runic script.

I saw a burning eye, and felt Sören's urgency to fight the evil.

I closed my eyes instinctively, but I knew Gweir and Sarenya had both seen it too. Each of them took my hand, Gweir squeezing, Sarenya petting.

"I won't give you the false promise of everything will be all right," Gweir said. "We have already endured much that isn't all right."

"Yeah." I nodded.

"Yeah." Sarenya sighed and frowned. "Sometimes I think our children have gotten the worst of it, because they never got a chance to know how beautiful our homeworlds were... the way life was before all of this."

I waited, knowing she had more to say. "If Tindo seems more like a butt than usual today," she said, "it would have been his father's birthday. He'd still remember that, we had quite the parties on our birthdays."

"Oh." I was frowning too, now.

Tindo, being Han and Lando's contemporary, wasn't very old when Yllen fell to the Jedi, and the survivors fled to Tython via a portal network very much the same as what had been left for my people in the Green Hills of Corellia via our ancestors. Indeed, Sarenya's people and mine were much the same, right down to our pointy ears. Tindo had lost both his parents in the Jedi attack on Yllen, and had been raised by one of Sarenya's surviving kin, though Tindo's fosterers were gone now as well, lost as casualties of the Rebellion.

"Such a shame, too."

"Oh, you knew his father?"

Sarenya nodded solemnly. "Laurë was my Chosen. We had only shared the one time, but it was... quite an experience. He was a lovely man. Tindo inherited his voice and his skills with a harp, but Laurë was still in a league of his own. We will never see his like again."

I kissed her hand. "I'm so sorry."

"He would have preferred to go valiantly in battle, I think, but..." She shook her head. "There was really no fight to be had against the Jedi, not the way they came in and rolled over us."

I thought of my people's stand, all the carnage that still haunted my dreams more than two decades later. "Did you watch him die?"

"No, he just... wasn't with the survivors escaping. And the Jedi were being very thorough, cutting bodies down left and right. Anyone who didn't flee when we did... their odds weren't good at all." Sarenya pinched the bridge of her nose, and I could feel the pain, even though she was trying to shield it.

I went over to her and took her into my arms. Gweir watched us, and I could tell he was internally debating whether or not to make a hug pile or let us share a private moment - the massacre in the Green Hills had affected him too but he hadn't seen as many dead bodies as I had, especially when my sister-in-law Neryta fell, head rolling on the ground, to scar Dougras for life. I couldn't unsee that, ever.

I tilted Sarenya's face up to mine, and kissed her. She kissed me back hard, in a way that let me know she wanted me - needed me - to help her forget, as quickly and as thoroughly as possible.

We looked at Gweir. "I can give you guys some privacy," he said.

"Thank you," Sarenya said, reaching out to give his hand a squeeze. "I'll make up for it later."

"Only if you want to." Gweir squeezed her hand back. "Dougras can always take care of me if not."

"That's true."

Once Gweir was out of the room, we kissed again, and again. Soon our clothes were on the floor and Sarenya was sitting on my face. I'd come hoping for a stiff drink, but drinking her nectar was much better, especially when she squirted on me like a fountain. Then she was riding me, and I bucked underneath her, giving it back to her hard and fast, needing her like life needs life. Our passion reminded us that we had survived, and that we were here, together, so that our people had not died in vain. We carried their stories within us. We fulfilled their stories in the conclusion of our own, whenever that would be.

This was a reason to keep fighting, to not give into the crushing despair of walls of universes screaming in pain. She had been taken away from me elsewhere, and really, everywhere, but we were at least here, loving, living.

A scream ripped through her as she climaxed, followed by my own howl of pleasure as I spent into her. We looked into each other's eyes and she leaned down and kissed me, the two of us gasping for breath between hungry kisses, throbbing and throbbing, the pulse of the Force.

From the door I heard an "oh, shit."

I turned my head and there was Lando, standing with a couple pizza boxes. He dropped them on the floor, a look of shock on his face. He knew, of course, that his foster mother and I were lovers, and had been for some time, and he had long since gotten over me. But he didn't want to see us fuck, the same way Han didn't want to walk in on me and Yan and we had to take precautions whenever Han was there to visit.

Sarenya and I hadn't quite taken precautions here on the couch, as we hadn't expected Lando and Tindo to be back so soon - "go to the store" did not mean "just get pizza", I suppose unless you were Lando and Tindo. 

Tindo patted Lando's shoulder and said, "Hey, man, look at it this way - at least you've still got a mom."

"MAN, FUCK YOU, TINDO."

Sarenya and I quickly put our clothes back on, and Tindo and Lando were waiting in the kitchen. Across my Force bond with my son - and Han's Force bond with his very best friend - Han had picked up on the moment and was poking at me in the Force, losing his shit.

That's not very nice, Han.

You know how many times he's tormented me about you being his Chosen, when I didn't want to hear about your sex life? It's not nice, but it's funny.

OK, I had to concede that, and I did with a giggle. Lando gave me a look. "What?" he growled.

"Oh, nothing."

"Oh no, it's something." Tindo grinned. "Out with it, then."

I gave Lando my best innocent face and then I borrowed the same line he'd used on my son for years: "I did your mom."