Actions

Work Header

In Fire And Blood

Chapter Text

Yoda and Chewbacca had been sent to Serenno before the arrival of the others, on an assignment from Dooku to go to the other noble Houses of Serenno and urge the Counts and Contessas to ready the military to upgrade the defense grid of Serenno and set up a defense network for the entire Serenno system; they also worked on convincing the Houses that a summit would be in order to discuss the revival of CIS and Serenno's membership in such. So Yoda and Chewbacca had been travelling around Serenno, getting to see the beauty of its different continents, sample local Serennian cuisines, and stay in luxurious hotels where for the first time in his ascetic, monastic existence, Yoda indulged in hot tubs, silk sheets and fluffy towels, and a masseuse.

While Yoda and Chewbacca had been living it up, everyone else had an extremely stressful last few days on Arcturus, and Dooku allowed his new family a week to decompress in the lakeside villas on his estate before calling an assembly.

Dooku's sister Irina Dooku-Fett - widow of the late Aran Fett, brother of Jango - was a little nervous about so many people coming to dinner, and even more nervous about what this all implied. She knew the Galaxy was a mess and Serenno, long proudly independent, was potentially at risk from the First Order, which had been aggressively conquering the Outer Rim one system at a time. But since her resurrection four years prior, life had been peaceful. She remembered the Clone Wars all too well - her husband had died fighting for the Separatists, and she herself had died at the hands of Vader during the Cleansing of Serenno, after watching him kill her children. She didn't want to go through something like this again... but she knew, just the same, they couldn't simply ignore what was happening to the rest of the Galaxy.

Irina's adopted daughter Neryt, who was sixteen going on seventeen - a legal adult on Serenno - helped her close up the back of her dress. Neryt was the biological daughter of the middle Dooku, Istrell, who had become Count after Idis was taken by the Jedi at age six. Istrell had a few legitimate children, and he also had a Togruta paramour, and Neryt was the result of that liaison. When Istrell was murdered, Neryt was given to Irina for safekeeping, and Irina had raised her as her own daughter. Neryt had grown up on Mandalore, and felt as much culturally Mandalorian as Serennian, if not moreso. Neryt was uncomfortable with formality - Irina wanted to be a good hostess, and Neryt thought it was better to make them feel at home. So Irina was wearing something dressy, and Neryt was wearing... denim jeans.

"Really?" Irina sniffed at her daughter's choice of attire. "Could you at least put on dress pants?"

"No?" Neryt had her uncle's bitchface. "You don't run my life, Mom."

Irina bitchfaced back.

The first to arrive were Sifo-Dyas and Jocasta Nu, who'd been given the villa with the most land attached - Jocasta had already purchased goats for fresh milk, and because she thought petting goats would be therapeutic after the stress of Arcturus. Jocasta arrived with goat's milk for Irina, who thanked her. Sifo-Dyas was neither exceptionally tall nor short, with brown skin, watchful dark eyes, a large nose, silvering dark shoulder-length wavy hair and a closely trimmed beard, and had as of late stopped wearing his usual brown Jedi robes - tonight he was wearing a brown tunic with a darker brown vest, trimmed with grey and black, and dark brown pants. Jocasta had stopped wearing the bulky robes of a Jedi librarian and was wearing a blue blouse and skirt that brought out the blue in her eyes. Her silver hair was up, held in place with hairsticks - as an engagement gift Sifo had bought her color-changing hairsticks set with small diamonds, which sparkled in the light. Irina observed that Jocasta had a nice figure, especially for her age, and she was probably quite beautiful when she was younger. She was still beautiful now, with high cheekbones, a generous mouth that smiled warmly, and a mischievous twinkle in her eyes.

The next to arrive were Darth Malak - a reincarnation of the ancient Sith Lord, formerly known as Alexis Yusanis, one of the brothers of Dooku's bondmate Severin - and his wife, Reine Yusanis. Malak was a handsome young man, about as tall as Dooku, with closely-cropped dark hair, kind brown eyes, a rugged yet boyish face, pointy ears, and a muscular build. Reine was a tall woman, with caramel skin, big golden brown eyes, full lips, a sweet face, curly dark hair, and a slim, athletic figure. Malak was wearing a black frilly shirt with a black kilt, and Reine wore a purple dress with a small spray of lighter purple embroidered flowers across the neckline - simple and elegant. Reine's hair was in a chignon, with some curls hanging loose, and amethysts dangled from her ears. She was arresting, and Malak looked at her like she was a goddess.

Reine's twin brother Finn arrived with his grandfather, Mace Windu. Both men had dark skin and eyes, Finn's hair was short and Mace was bald. Finn had a quick grin, and Mace a much more serious expression. Mace wore purple-brown Jedi robes, even though he was no longer affiliated with any Order, and Finn wore a flight jacket over a button-down blue shirt and black trousers. Irina thought Mace was quite handsome, and the Jedi robes did not suit him at all.

Mace could scarcely make words when he first saw Irina. She was six feet tall, with short silvering dark hair, dark eyes, olive skin, aristocratic high cheekbones, and the slender yet curvy figure of a much younger woman, in an emerald green dress with lace trim at the hems, small emeralds in her ears. She had class, style, grace, and the sexiest voice Mace had ever heard.

Well, this is gonna be interesting, Mace thought to himself.

Leia Organa and her husband Han Solo came then. Irina had heard Leia was the daughter of Vader, and she knew it was unfair to take the sins of the father out on his children and grandchildren, especially when Leia had fought against him. So she welcomed Leia with the traditional bread and salt, and Leia embraced her.

"Irina, Leia is going to be your niece," said Dooku, finally coming out with his bondmate, Severin Yusanis, in tow. Count Idis Dooku was six-five, slender but powerfully built, short silver-white hair slicked back and a short silver-white beard, a face that almost always looked angry even when he wasn't, with intense dark eyes. He wore a black cape with an ornate silver clasp, over a simple black V-neck tunic that showed a little silvery chest hair, and black trousers; his lightsaber and some personal affects were in the belt around his waist. Severin was a couple inches shorter than Dooku, with green eyes, full lips, a neatly trimmed dark beard, and the lean, wiry frame of a soldier, wearing his usual evil grin with a black button-down shirt and black trousers, his nape-length dark curls tamed by gel, showing off the pointy ears that Irina had seen Dooku play with and suck on more than a few times. Severin was pretty in a way that was both masculine and feminine, and he was also clever, with a bit of a barbed wit - Dooku seemed to enjoy their banter, and it was good for him. Irina, having her own snarky sense of humor, liked him immensely, and approved of Dooku's choice of mate.

Irina had heard things about Leia Organa - she was the leader of the Rebel Alliance, and now she was the leader of the Resistance, coming out of medical leave recently; she'd heard that Leia and Dooku had quite a bit in common with their personalities, while they differed in other ways - and she'd been expecting someone taller. Leia was barely five feet tall, with greying brown braids in an updo, warm brown eyes, and a somewhat sad smile. Tonight she was wearing a steel blue suit, neither too formal nor too casual. It was obvious from the looks of Han Solo that Leia had made him clean up a bit. His grey hair was almost unruly, and he wore a black vest over a white button-down shirt, with black trousers. He looked very obviously uncomfortable with the opulence of Dooku's palace, while Leia's House Organa background was still quite plain to see.

"So you're adopting her, too?" Irina knew Dooku was adopting his first padawan, Qui-Gon Jinn.

Dooku nodded.

Qui-Gon and his bondmate Obi-Wan arrived, as if on cue, and Dooku gestured to Obi-Wan and said, "I'm adopting him also." Obi-Wan smiled and put an arm around Dooku on his way to take Irina's hand and kiss it. "Contessa," he said, "it is a pleasure to finally meet you."

Irina curtsied.

Then she turned to Qui-Gon Jinn, who she'd met for the first time when Dooku was twenty-nine, Qui was nineteen and she was fourteen and she thought Qui was "the dreamiest thing ever". He had aged quite nicely, although she thought his hair much too long. She was not interested in him anymore, but she still felt somewhat embarrassed for her girlhood interest as Qui-Gon squeezed her hand.

"We meet again, Contessa," Qui-Gon said.

"Yes. It is good to see you here, Qui-Gon."

Obi-Wan Kenobi had been restored to his younger, Clone Wars-era body when he was resurrected four years ago, due to his health deteriorating in the last days of his life. He had short auburn hair and a ginger beard, blue eyes that could be cold or full of mirth, and a charming smile and equally charming manners. Qui-Gon's blue eyes danced, his silvering brown hair and beard had been subjected to Obi's comb before they arrived but his hair still looked a bit flyaway, and Qui-Gon smelled vaguely of patchouli. Like Mace Windu, Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon were also wearing Jedi robes, or rather, Qui-Gon was wearing the brown robes of a Jedi and Obi-Wan the black robes of a Sith. Irina had heard Obi-Wan Kenobi, hero of the Jedi Order, had become a Sith Lord since his resurrection, but just like her brother, he seemed too nice to be a Sith... and that of course made him dangerous.

Qui and Obi both embraced and kissed Leia, which surprised Irina for a minute, even though she was generally an accepting, open-minded person - she hadn't been expecting this, but now she understood why Dooku was adopting all three of them as his children and heirs.

Yoda and Chewbacca arrived next, looking adorable and comical together - the tiny, ancient green wrinkled Jedi Master, riding piggyback on the giant brown Wookiee. Chewbacca put Yoda down so he could bow politely to Irina, and she curtsied in return.

The last to arrive were Dennis Yusanis - the middle Yusanis triplet - and his fiance, Ben Skywalker-Solo, one of Leia and Han's sons, identical twin of the feared Kylo Ren. Like Yoda, Ben was hobbling, but for an entirely different reason, if the grin on Dennis's face was any indicator. Dennis was six feet tall, short dark hair with a few unruly waves that would probably curl if grown out, grey eyes, pointy ears, boyishly handsome with a dimpled smile. He wore a grey long-sleeved sweater and burgundy scarf over black trousers. Ben had nape-length dark hair, dark eyes, a short trimmed beard, a somewhat awkward face that looked perpetually grumpy but was adorable when it grinned, big ears, and wore a black sweater with black trousers.

Dennis had two children with an ex-partner - a twin boy and girl, just under three, with pointy ears and dark curly hair, who had grey eyes and their father's smile. The girl wore a grey dress trimmed with purple ruffles and bows, with a purple bow in her hair, and the boy wore a purple button-down shirt with dark grey trousers. They were each carrying a stuffed owl - the girl's owl was purple, and the boy's owl was red.

"And what are your names?" Irina asked them.

"Lysa," said the girl.

"Owen," said the boy.

Irina tousled their hair and gave them each a piece of candy. "Oh no," Dennis laughed. "You're their new favorite grownup." Lysa and Owen hugged her enthusiastically, and Irina smiled at the precious children.

Neryt finally came out, and Dennis and Ben couldn't help ogling her. Her montrals brought her to six feet tall, and she had three lekku to her waist, one in back, two in front, white striped brown. She had red skin with white around her eyes, white swirls under her eyes, a white stripe down the middle of her forehead and over the middle of her chin, and otherwise looked a lot like Irina when she was young - down to the curves - but smiled much more readily, and her smile was dazzling. She wore a light blue sweater showing a little cleavage and denim jeans that hugged her ass just the right way, and her lekku swung with her hips as she walked.

She's hot, Dennis said to Ben in the Force.

Yes. She is. Ben almost felt guilty, remembering his bondmate Alyssa, who'd been dead for four years - but her Force ghost had told him to move on, and he was just looking.

Neryt had an adopted brother, a tall black-furred Wookiee named Isshaddik, who had been the son of one of Aran Fett's warband, and was adopted by Irina and Aran when his father died. Isshaddik was twenty, and had a girlfriend back on Mandalore. Isshaddik was happy to see another Wookiee, and he and Chewbacca greeted each other the traditional way.

"I hope you're all hungry," Irina said. "I had the servants make enough food to feed an army."

"Well," Dooku replied, "that is exactly what we are, now."

"In general," Dennis quipped, and Leia smacked his ass. Irina could tell just from that gesture that Ben wasn't the only Skywalker Dennis was involved with, and she didn't know quite what to make of that... but it was what it was.

_

There were two dining rooms in Dooku's palace - one with a long table that could seat eight, or twelve if the table was extended and more chairs brought in, and then a larger dining hall meant for larger groups and special events. Idis, Severin, Irina, Neryt, Isshaddik, Chewbacca, Yoda, Mace, Finn, Reine, Malak, Dennis, Ben, Leia, Han, Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, Sifo-Dyas, and Jocasta made nineteen adults, and Lysa and Owen made it twenty-one people altogether. They were going to have to use the larger dining hall.

Irina hadn't been kidding about the food - it was a full seven-course meal, and that didn't count dessert. There was enough for everyone to have multiple helpings. Most dishes were a combination of meat and vegetables, but there were two vegetarian options and two kinds of meat on the bone, as Irina had been informed Yoda was an obligate carnivore, and Togrutas also had to have more meat in their diet than humans did. Wine was plentiful, and before they drank, Dooku made a toast.

"To my family," he said. "Some of you are my blood, and some of you have family bonds forged in fire. But either way, you are all dear to my heart, and I welcome you here to my home... which is now your home."

"Salu," Irina said, and lifted her glass.

"Salu," the others replied, clinking their glasses.

It was customary on Serenno for small children to be given a tiny amount of wine with their meal. This particular wine was rosé, and Lysa liked it better than the dry white wine she'd tried before. "This doesn't taste like poodoo," she informed everyone.

Dooku bitchfaced, and Irina laughed. "Oh dear," Irina said.

After the first sip, Dooku went on, "I did not just say what I did as a toast. We have much business to discuss... but tonight, I have brought you here because the first act of getting our house in order is doing something I wish had been done a very long time ago - Master Yoda is formally, legally adopting me as his son. In a short while Count Nalju, the current Singer of Serenno, will be arriving to witness and execute the adoption." Dooku smiled at Yoda, and Yoda smiled back.

"That's if we don't all explode," Sev said, before putting a bite of vegetable casserole in his mouth.

"Well, the First Order tried and they failed," Dooku quipped.

"On the note of the First Order," Leia said, "that meeting you wanted with the Resistance... they'll be here in three days."

"Excellent."

"I have to warn you," Leia told him, "while there are some in our highest ranks who see this as a dream come true - the former Separatist leader, lending us his experience and giving us the funding we need to upgrade our weapons and ships on par with the First Order, more bases, and battle droids - there are some in the Resistance who want to see you hang for the Clone Wars, who think you should have never been resurrected. It's going to be a hard sell - you're really going to have to prove to them that they're backing the right horse, so to speak."

Dooku nodded. "Most in the Resistance were staunch members of the Republic. I thoroughly expect some resentment, especially with regards to why I will not simply ally with the New Republic now."

Leia also nodded. "Since you've had extensive experience with politics, I figured you'd already know... but I wanted to confirm for you." Leia took a sip of her wine. "We do have one plus on our side. Major Poe Dameron is rising in the ranks and he's quite popular. He's also Finn's boyfriend. Finn thinks you're awesome, and if Poe feels the same way once he's here... people might be inclined to change their mind about you."

"I don't need to be awesome," Dooku said, "I just need people to understand where I'm coming from, and be willing to put aside whatever differences they have and work with me. Because this isn't about me. This is about preventing the First Order from taking over the Galaxy, and keeping the New Republic from making an even greater mess of things than they have."

"So you don't want to be Emperor."

Dooku snorted. "I'm forever eighty-three. I want to retire and make wine... and make love with my husband." He kissed Severin. Then he turned back to the group. "I am willing to be 'head of state' for the Commonwealth of Independent Systems until we can get to a place of taking Coruscant. I'm getting you to where you need to go, and then I want to be done, except perhaps in a behind-the-scenes, occasional advisory position. I hate politics."

"You know, that General Douglas Skywalker guy we met is an officer of the Imperial Galactic Republic," Sev said. "Where there's a Chancellor Dooku."

"Yes. That would be a universe where I won the Clone Wars and wasn't completely demoralized and traumatized by the circumstances before and surrounding my death, and thrown into an existential crisis by the way the Galaxy had changed after my death. The war to get us where we need to go is going to be difficult enough and when it is done, I want to relax and recover from it all. Chancellor Dooku is welcome to his job. I don't want it."

"People who don't want power are exactly the kind of people who should have power," Han said.

"Then maybe you should be Emperor." Dooku glared at him.

"Can you imagine Kylo's face?" Dennis cracked up laughing, and then Ben did, too.

"Can you imagine Kylo's reaction?" Ben did his best imitation of Kylo. "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO."

"No way in hell do I want to be goddamn Emperor," Han said. "Uh uh. No fuckin' way." Then he realized there were small children present. "Oops."

Owen and Lysa giggled, Irina and Dooku rolled their eyes, and Dennis said, "Well you know, they're being raised by us, and Ben and I have let a few fly." Ben nodded.

"Yeah, you're not like your father at all," Leia said to Ben, sarcastically.

Dooku sniffed his wine before he drank it. "I actually don't think that anyone should be Emperor, because the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. For the last twenty five thousand years the Galaxy has gone back and forth between Republic and Empire, on and on, spinning like a wheel." Dooku sipped his wine. "I am going to break the wheel. When we have defeated both the New Republic and the First Order... something different will be done. We're going to get it right, this time."

"I'll drink to that," Obi-Wan said, and he did.

"Obi, dear, you'll drink to anything," Qui-Gon teased.

_

The Singer of Serenno was a ceremonial title given to a Count or Contessa who would be responsible for naming babies, presiding over funerals, and communing with the Living Force - which the Serenni called the Kalae - especially to commune with what the Serenni called "nature spirits" during the occasional severe weather or natural disasters. In order to build new developments on Serenno, the Singer had to be brought out and ask the nature spirits' permission. Dooku used to think this was silly superstition until he brought Qui-Gon to Serenno, when Qui was his padawan. Qui-Gon proved that trees did, indeed, have opinions about things. He proved this in a way Dooku wanted to unsee.

Count Nalju was a wizened old man in his hundred fifties, with long white hair tied back and a long beard, the same intense dark eyes so many Serenni had, wearing the green cape customary of the Singer, carrying a staff made from a naturally fallen branch of the Great Tree of Serenno, that had been carried by every Singer for the last nine generations. Sev thought Count Nalju was rather like the Serennian version of Yoda, and was surprised when Count Nalju opened his mouth and spoke perfect Basic, without that odd syntax Yoda had.

"I have come to attend the adoption," the Singer said.

The adoption was taking place in the living room, which was big enough for everyone to take a seat. A shrine for the ancestors of House Dooku was on the fireplace mantle, and Dooku and Irina lit the candles together. They both had dysfunctional relationships with their parents - their mother had been downright abusive - but Dooku's grandfather had been kind, and Dooku remembered him as he lit the flame for Indrastae Dooku.

From a flame lit by the candle for the first Dooku - one of the sons of Serenn, the founder of the Serenno colony, almost ten thousand years ago - Dooku and Yoda each lit a candle, and carried the candles down an aisle of candles, to an unlit candle.

Yoda set his candle down, and so did Dooku. Yoda presented his empty hands, and the Singer unsheathed an antler-handled knife. "Know you as my child, do I," Yoda told Dooku. The Singer cut Yoda's wrist, and the blood flowed onto Dooku's upturned hand.

Then it was Dooku's turn. "I know you as my father," Dooku told him. The Singer cut Dooku's wrist, and the blood flowed onto Yoda's upturned hand.

Yoda and Dooku then dripped their blood onto the unlit candle, and lit it together.

"In fire and blood, I pronounce you father and son," the Singer spoke. "Yoda is brought by the mighty ancestors into House Dooku, and House Dooku is greater for his presence in it. What the Kalae has brought together, let no man put asunder."

Yoda took Dooku's hands in his, and Dooku looked down at him with tears in his eyes. Yoda smiled through his own tears. They felt their bond in the Force, cleansed of all enmity between them, weaving together tighter... and brighter. Love you as my own child, I always have, Yoda told him. Always did I, even when we were at war.

Dooku squeezed Yoda's hands. I love you too, Father.

Both men glowed from light other than the candles - Sev gasped a little as he watched. His own eyes filled with tears, feeling Dooku's emotions through their Force bond as lovers... and Sev's own care for his bondmate. Sev teased Dooku a lot, but he wanted Dooku to be happy, especially when he had carried so much pain in his soul for so long.

Dooku scooped up Yoda, and they embraced, and then Yoda climbed onto Dooku's shoulders, with Dooku giving him a piggyback ride back down the aisle of candles to the ancestor shrine, where Yoda placed a pebble he'd carried since the time he left his homeworld hundreds of years ago. He had not considered any place truly home since that time - he'd said more than once the Force was his home, the Force was everywhere, and he was at home anywhere the Force was. But that had been a platitude of the Jedi... and this was the truth. He was home now, with the people who mattered to him. They were going to war, but here there was a moment of peace. Yoda touched Dooku's head... and then he lovingly messed Dooku's hair, which made Dooku bitchface, and made everyone else laugh.

Then Chewbacca approached. Come here, cub, he told Dooku, and gave Dooku a hug hard enough that Dooku briefly worried his ribs would be crushed.

"So I suppose this makes you my... other father?" Dooku raised an eyebrow.

I suppose it does. Then Chewbacca gave Dooku a noogie, and Dooku bitchfaced even harder at the sheer indignity of it all.

"I would suggest letting the Wookiee win," Han told him.

_

Dooku felt emotional enough from the adoption rite that when he and Severin retired for the night, they just held each other for awhile, rather than jumping straight into lovemaking. There was a knock on Dooku's bedchamber, and Dooku sensed Yoda's presence behind the door.

"Come in, Father," he said.

"Came to tuck you in, did I," Yoda said.

"I hope you're not planning on doing this every night," Dooku quipped, "unless you have eyeshades and earplugs, or brain bleach available."

"Ha. Ha. No, not every night. But sense, did I, that free you were, tonight."

Yoda hopped up on a stool and put covers over Dooku and Sev - he knew they'd probably come off later, but it was the gesture that counted. He then sat at Dooku's side and kissed his fingers, which he had a habit of doing to help Dooku fall asleep when he was a small child.

"Forgot something, you did," Yoda told him.

Dooku raised his eyebrow.

Dooku watched as Yoda used the Force to bring over Teffi, the stuffed blue tauntaun that he'd slept with as a child, that Irina had uncovered after he arrived home a few days ago. It was not common knowledge that Darth Tyranus slept with a stuffed animal, and Dooku glared at Sev, wondering if Sev had informed everyone about the existence of Teffi, much like Sev had showed pictures to the Jedi of the New Force Order of a twenty-five-year-old Dooku drunk, passed out, wearing a pink feather boa, glitter, and a tiara that Sifo-Dyas and Jocasta had put on him while he was too inebriated to protest. "You didn't tell him, did you, Severin?" Dooku growled.

"Tell me, your bondmate did not," Yoda said. "But know these things, does a father. Or this father."

Dooku felt himself strangely touched and teared up by that, and the tears threatened to come again when Yoda put Teffi in Dooku's arms. Yoda then talked to Teffi like Teffi was real and could hear him. "Watch over him, you will," Yoda said. He patted Teffi's head. Then he hopped down from the stool.

Sev kissed the tip of Dooku's nose. "You're adorable."

"I. Am. Not. Adorable."

"Yes, you are." Yoda grinned, and laughed on his way out. Just before he could walk out the door, Dooku used the Force to hit Yoda in the butt with a pillow, and Yoda turned around, stuck his tongue out at Dooku, and then he was off.

Chapter Text

Dennis and Ben got woken up to the sound of Owen and Lysa screaming, and both of them charged into the children's bedroom with a panic - even though Dooku's estate was shielded and patrolled, they still didn't want to take any chances with intruders, or a possible medical emergency - and then breathed a sigh of relief together when it was just the kids in their bed, unharmed... but crying.

"I had a bad dream," Owen sobbed.

"Me too," Lysa cried.

Dennis and Ben took the kids into their arms and cuddled and rocked them, stroking their hair and faces until the tears subsided. In addition to the abuse they'd endured living with their mother, Dennis's ex-girlfriend Joxa Shihai - one of the leaders of the Bando Gora, a drug cult - they'd had quite a scare their last day on Arcturus, where Dennis and the kids had been at a playground and Dennis was taken at blasterpoint by the First Order, leaving the kids behind for a couple of hours until Ben and Han Solo found them, in hysterics... and then the kids witnessed a major attack from the First Order at the spaceport. They were not even three, and they had seen death and carnage.

"You dreamed about the bad people again, didn't you?" Ben asked them.

The kids nodded.

"Listen, you know Dad and Daddy fought the bad people, right?" Dennis asked.

The kids nodded again.

Dennis kissed each forehead. "We kicked the bad guys' butts. We kept you safe. And you're here now, with us, and you're far, far away from the bad people. They can't come here and do anything to you. You know why?"

The kids shook their heads.

Dennis pulled on one of their blankets. "You see this blanket?"

They nodded.

"There's like a big blanket around the planet we're on, which will keep the bad guys from being able to hit it with their ships, but also..." Dennis pulled out a stuffed owl from underneath the blanket. "Will attack the ships..." Dennis flew the owl into Ben's face, making the kids giggle. "...and make them go bye-bye. Your Grampa Dooku made sure to have that set up before we left."

"I'm still scared," Lysa said.

"I know, punkin. It was scary. Even Daddy was scared." Dennis tousled her hair and held her tighter. "But you know... we made it out. The Force is with us. The Force is like... Daddy's daddy, but bigger and invisible. We're all gonna be OK."

Dennis and Ben soothed the kids back to sleep, and then they went back to their bedroom and lay in silence for awhile, holding each other - feeling the other's sadness for the children, and for the mess that had brought them out to Serenno.

"I feel so fucking helpless," Dennis said. "My babies are hurting and I don't know how to make it stop."

Ben stroked Dennis's face, skritching the stubble growing along his jaw. "You mentioned before this shit hit the fan that you wanted to get the kids to a counselor because of what they went through with their mom, right?"

Dennis nodded. "Yeah." He used the Force to turn on the lights, and then used the Force to bring over his Holonet tablet. "I know it's the middle of the night and nothing's open now, but at least I can look for providers to call in the morning. I have to do something."

Ben sat with Dennis, petting him as Dennis looked through Serenno's Holonet, searching for a psychologist. And then Dennis's eyebrows shot up. "Holy shit."

"What?"

"...Ari Camwyr."

Ben made a confused face. "...OK?"

Dennis put the tablet down and turned to Ben. "You know how my parents were killed when I was six and my brothers and I were sent from Eshan to live with our father's sister and her Corellian husband, on Corellia?"

"Yes."

"OK, well... they had a son. He was a bit older than us, and he left as soon as he could - he was fifteen when he got out of there. He was treated pretty badly too, and he did what he could to protect us, and he always felt bad about not taking us with him when he left but he had a hard enough time taking care of himself at that age, never mind three little kids."

Ben nodded sympathetically.

"He kept in touch intermittently - he sent me and Sev money sometimes when we needed it, actually - but we haven't heard from him since we were brought into the First Order. After he left home he saw the Galaxy for awhile, and then we know he went to med school - he was kind of Sev's inspiration for going - but he chose to specialize in mental health, I guess because of the abusive bullshit he dealt with." Dennis narrowed his eyes. "I don't know how he wound up here on Serenno, but Ari Camwyr isn't a name you see every day, and if there was more than one the odds would be against there being two in the mental health field."

"And we know the Force is in the reuniting long-lost family business," Ben said.

"Yeah." Dennis folded his arms. "So I think when his office opens I'm going to give him a call, see if he'd be willing to take my kids as clients, or at least refer me to someone who can. And maybe make plans to get caught up and see what he's doing on Serenno... and see how he fits into all of this."

"Is he Force sensitive?"

"Yes. But he also learned how to hide it from his parents, because they were so shitty about it, and I highly doubt he's had any formal training, so how much he's actively using the Force is anyone's guess."

"Welp." Ben scratched his head. "All that talk of possibly setting up a Temple here on Serenno suddenly seems more relevant."

Dennis threw up his hands. "Does the Force have any setting other than extra?"

"If it did, I think the multiverse would implode." Then Ben kissed Dennis's nose. "Let's get a few more hours of sleep while we can."

"Sleep?" Dennis leered at Ben.

"Yes, sleep." Ben gave him a mock stern look. "If I can catch up on rest now, it means I'll be properly rested for whatever you want to do later."

Dennis promptly shut off the lights, threw himself on the pillows, and made exaggerated snoring noises, making Ben laugh. Then Ben leaned in to give him a soft, gentle kiss.

"I love you, you know." Ben stroked Dennis's face some more. "And I love seeing you be a dad to the kids. It shows your heart." Ben squeezed Dennis's hand.

"I try." There was a pause, and then Dennis said, "One of the saddest things about this situation is Kylo's part in all of this. I had misgivings about the First Order from the time I was picked up at the skate park in Coronet City and dragged at blasterpoint onto the Finalizer, but Kylo Ren and my brother Alexis were best friends and Kylo seemed genuinely interested in helping us, after a lifetime of our guardians giving us bullshit for being Force sensitive, and me and Sev being the special kids who got picked on even though we tried to not be that different. Kylo told us about his background, and his motivations for doing what he was doing. I saw him as a well-intentioned extremist rather than just, like, evil. I cared about him. When I offered to help his mom - your mom - out, before she and I were ever A Thing, it was because I felt how much pain she was in... and I'd felt Kylo's pain, and I thought maybe if she re-learned how to use the Force and she got comfortable with being in the grey area of the Force, it might go a ways towards her reconciling with Kylo. Because I gave a shit about him, even when I didn't see eye to eye with him on everything, I thought his heart was in the right place." Dennis sighed. "Finding out that it's highly likely he wanted me dead all along, that me and my brothers were brought to the First Order so the Seven Light could be killed before we had a chance to get started with the work of fixing the Galaxy... finding out that he was A-OK with Valyeris fucking my psychotic ex-girlfriend... it hurts. It isn't just a betrayal on a personal level, with being lied to, being plotted against all this time... I cared about him as a friend, I tried to see the good in him even when other people thought he was a monster. And it turns out yeah, no, he's actually a monster... and he may be past the point of redemption. And that brings me pain. Knowing how lost he is, how hurt he is, and that he may never find his way back."

Ben took Dennis's hand and kissed it. Then he kissed Dennis's forehead. "You're a beautiful person."

"I'm just too sensitive to live. Which didn't exactly earn me a lot of respect in the Sith Order. But I'm too angry to be a Jedi, and their philosophy otherwise doesn't agree with me. Gives me heartburn." Dennis smiled a little as Ben groaned at the joke. "I wish I didn't care so goddamn much. I was like this when shit with Joxa happened. My life would be so much easier if I could stop caring like I do, because that's how you get hurt."

"If Kylo is ever going to be redeemed... it's going to be because of people like you who still found something to love, even when he was being unlovable. I admit, I'm pretty skeptical about the chances... and he's going to have a lot to answer for if that day comes. But your sensitivity isn't a weakness, my love. It's strength. So long as you don't let it become a blind spot and the caring becomes a way in for these people to take advantage and run roughshod over you."

"The entire reason why Sev and I made it off the Finalizer in one piece is precisely because we didn't." Dennis chuckled. "I wish you could have seen it. It was epic."

Ben pulled Dennis into his arms and held him against his chest. "If I am the heart of the Force, you are its eyes. The eyes of the Exile. You know what a person is made of. Your willingness to know me, and love me as I am... has made all the difference in my life."

"I really do love you." Even though the room was dark, Ben knew Dennis was grinning. "And I love your mom."

Ben snorted. "The only thing that makes Kylo more uncomfortable than you giving it to Mom is then sticking that same dick in me. If I didn't know better, I'd say the Force set all that up just to fuck with Kylo."

"Would the Force do that? Are the Seven Light more accurately called the Seven Trolls?"

"Go to sleep, Dennis."

Dennis playfully grabbed Ben's ass, and Ben grabbed Dennis's back, and then they quietly cuddled until they fell asleep again.

_

When he flees the Mandalorians who killed his parents and massacred most of his village, he is almost mute. The Jedi ask him his name, and he tells them, "Alek." He cannot speak his surname. It is his link to his parents. It is too sacred to be spoken.

As a surname, they give him the name of his village on Quelil - Squinquargesimus, which is Dathomirian for "blackwater swamp" and is pretty accurate of the landscape. This quickly gets turned into Squint by his crechemates, double meaning because he is nearsighted.

He is half-Dathomiri, his mother was a Nightsister, and one of his crechemates mocks him incessantly about this. "I heard your people eat babies. I heard your people fuck goats. I heard your people are Sith." He finds out quickly that if he gets angry and he reacts, he is disciplined more severely than the one instigating him. It isn't right, somehow.

One day he is at the playground and the crechemate who has started calling him "Darth Squint" gets the other kids to gang up on him. A boy a year or two older, quiet with dark hair, gets in front of him. "If any of you want to pick on Alek, you have to get through me first," he warns them.

His name is Obeah, and he is another survivor of the Mandalorian incursions. Alek's creche has to work in the kitchen that week to discipline the younglings who bullied him, and Alek makes a cake and saves a large piece for Obeah. They become friends. People stop picking on Alek when Obeah glares at them.

Obeah has another friend named Meetra, and the three become inseparable.

When they grow up and are padawans on their way to becoming Jedi Knights, the Mandalorians are causing even more havoc in the Galaxy. Obeah and Alek vow to do something about it, and they are encouraged by Obeah's Jedi Master, Arren Kae. Obeah has a near-death experience during his Jedi trials and he decides to take a new name, Revan, which means "rebirth" in the language of his people.

Alek and Meetra get closer, and one day they make love, and Meetra accidentally calls him "Malak" in bed. This becomes a private joke with them.

Revan and Alek get other Jedi impassioned about the Mandalorian crisis. Against the rule of the Order, and with the blessing of Arren Kae, they go off to fight the Mandalorians. When Alek is imprisoned and tortured by the Mandalorian Demagol, he comes back broken, and he too decides to change his name... to Malak. Meetra finally joins them.

The Mandalorians are butchers - they would burn the entire Galaxy to rule the ashes. Jedi platitudes and principles are too soft for dealing with them. Revan and Malak begin doing historical research and learn about how the Rakata conquered the Galaxy and made the Infinite Empire, in the time of the ancient Je'daii. They decide it's time to fight fire with fire. Their curiosity about the Rakata - Dark Side Force users whose savagery caused Je'daii Master Rajivari to fold the Dark-and-Light balanced Je'daii Order and found the Jedi, dedicated to the Light Side only - inevitably turns into curiosity about the Sith.

When the Mandalorians are defeated, Revan and Malak don't stop there. They see the Republic as having allowed the Mandalorians to get as far as they did - they see the Republic as being a complete failure. So they come up with a plan. Malak and Revan pretend to be enemies, and in a battle against him, Revan is injured and "develops amnesia". The Jedi take him back when Revan feigns not knowing who he is, as they see it better to try to redeem and retrain him, than kill him. Revan and Malak knew this would happen. Revan leads the Republic forces against Malak, and at the last minute leads them into a trap where Malak wins. Revan and Malak then rule together, as Emperors.

Valkorion feels that Revan and Malak "owe" him, for he taught them the way of the Sith, and he begins to work Sith alchemy against every single person Revan and Malak care about, including manipulating time to make things happen - like making sure Arren Kae gets stranded on Malachor V - until it is just them left standing. Malak finds a way to go back in time, and bring Revan with him, to see Traya while she is still at the Trayus Academy, and she teaches them the Cross of Changes, so they can make multiple versions of themselves and have numbers against Valkorion. Then Valkorion kills them both.

In the other universes, Revan and Malak aren't pretend enemies. They have learned in the original universe that if they reign together, it gives Valkorion a way in. So in all of the other universes, they duel to the death, whether as Sith against Sith, or Jedi against Sith. And in every universe Malak forgives him as he goes down, because somehow he knows what his best friend - his sworn brother - is doing. It is the necessary sacrifice. He will be reborn when the Force wills it, and they will take on Valkorion again, with their reinforcements.

But there is one thing Malak cannot forgive, and it is not when Revan cut off his jaw years before. It is when Dark Side Revan accused him of copying him. "Everything I do, you have to imitate it," Revan sneers. "I took the name Revan... then you take the name Malak."

"What was I supposed to do, put up with Squint for the rest of my life?"

It is where Revan hits a nerve, and the knowledge of "we planned this" as he falls is clouded by "or maybe Revan never respected me and planned to betray me all along."

_

His Echani father's name is Alek, and he is named Alexis, after his father. He is the eldest of three fraternal triplets, half-Echani, half-Alameenian. His early childhood is plagued with dreams about being "a bald guy with a metal jaw" that he doesn't understand, except he's really glad he has a jaw now, and hair. Unlike the accusations made against Dathomiri Alek's family being Sith when they were not, Alexis's parents actually are Sith, and tell their children they are special until they die when Alexis is six. Then the message changes to something quite different.

After his brother Dennis is taken hostage by the Hutts for a loan where the terms of service changed suddenly, Alexis joins the First Order to help his brothers out, who are living on a tiny student stipend. Alexis finds military life suits him, and his physical strength and Force sensitivity allow him to outshine the rest of his unit, so he quickly advances through the ranks. Eventually this attracts the notice of people watching for "very gifted" soldiers, and one day his Force sensitivity manifests with telekinesis during a training exercise, without him meaning to - it is a "kill or be killed" scenario.

He is brought before Kylo Ren. He is expecting to be disciplined, probably court-martialed, possibly executed - he knows the Empire had a habit of executing Force-sensitives who were found. Instead, Kylo says, "I've been waiting for you." And, "I can help you."

His aunt and uncle told him everything he is, was wrong, and tried to beat it out of him and his brothers. Kylo teaches him to embrace the Force, and get comfortable with using it more and more often, until it is second nature. They talk about the Force, and they find themselves talking about personal things - their backgrounds, where Kylo reveals that he, too, was not accepted by his parents, especially not his father Han Solo.

One day Kylo asks him, "Have you ever had any strange dreams?"

"Define strange."

"Dreams that feel like something that happened a long time ago. Dreams where it's you, but you're someone else."

Alexis frowns, and he says, "Well... when I was a little kid, I had dreams that I was bald and had a metal jaw, and I wore this stupid red spandex suit for some reason."

Kylo smiles. He doesn't smile often at all. "Did you call yourself Malak?"

Alexis's jaw drops so hard it's a wonder he doesn't lose it again.

Kylo embraces him for the first time. "I've missed you, brother."

Malak woke up crying. Again.

Reine immediately rolled against him and wrapped her arms around him. "Oh, baby," she said.

"I miss Kylo," Malak sobbed. "I miss Revan."

"Oh, baby. Shhhh, baby." Reine rocked him. "Oh, honey."

"He was my brother," Malak cried. "I loved him. How could he do this to me?"

"Shhhhhh." Reine rained kisses over Malak's face and especially over his stubbly jaw. "Baby."

"Fuck." Malak broke down, crying as brokenly as Reine had ever heard him cry, and she pulled him into her breasts, petting his hair, holding him as tight as she could, tears coming to her eyes... and a desire to rip Kylo Ren limb from limb, rising to her heart.

"You don't need him," Reine soothed. "You're better than him."

"I wouldn't have been best friends with him if I thought he was terrible. I believed in him, Reine. I believed in him."

Reine continued rocking her husband, and finally Malak noticed he had Reine's tits in his face and he stopped crying. "Here," she said, pulling a breast out of her camisole. He took her nipple into his mouth and she moaned.

"I'm glad he didn't get a chance to cut off your jaw this time," she purred. "You have such a good tongue."

Malak lapped her nipple, before sucking it harder. "Your breasts deserve to be worshiped, my love." He took a few more licks before turning to the other. Reine grabbed the points of his ears, arching to him, and his fingers reached to pull down her panties. Reine then grabbed her wrists, and their eyes met. Malak knew what she wanted. He pulled off her camisole, and went back and forth between her breasts again, before kissing his way down her stomach... and then took the waistband of her panties in his teeth and pulled them down, using his teeth to pull her panties down one thigh and off the leg, then the other. With the panties in his mouth, he dropped them on the bed, like a cat bringing its master a cat toy it "killed".

Then Malak's fingers played between her legs. "You're already wet," he said.

"You have that effect on me."

He lowered his head, inhaled her scent, and licked. Reine cried out, grabbing his pointy ears again. "Malak..."

"Oh, fuck, you taste good." He took a few slow licks before diving in, his lips on her pussy lips, tongue dancing around her clit, every so often brushing it, swirling, teasing it to an aching, swollen bud. He took her clit into his mouth, kissed it, sucked it, fingers rubbing her G-spot until she had her first orgasm. Then he licked her fast and furious into a second, putting his tongue inside her and tongue-fucking her G-spot, his fingers fucking her clit, for a third orgasm.

Between her whimpers and panting moans, her taste, and her beautiful pussy, his cock felt ready to explode, so he came up then, kissing her so she could taste herself on him. He shucked his boxer briefs and Reine bent to take him into her mouth - he let her suck him just enough to get it wet, before pushing her onto her back, propping a leg up on his shoulder. She spread for him, tilting up her hips, reaching to guide his cock. He took her. "This is gonna be fast and hard, baby," he rasped.

"Please."

He pounded into her and she bucked back at him, giving as good as she got. His hand reached for the collar around her throat, and she covered his hand with hers, not to stop him, but that assurance - Yes, I'm yours - and they fucked his pain away, brought him to that place where their bodies, their passion, their sex, was all that mattered. They were in this together; she was standing by her man... laying beneath her man, giving herself to him freely. She wrapped around him, clenched him tight, holding him with the most intimate part of her. He took, but he gave her pleasure, wanting to make it good for her, wanting to honor the fierce warrior whose submission he had earned.

The sound of her wetness got louder and louder, her cries rising, getting higher and higher pitched as her body shook, edging closer. His fingers had found that perfect rhythm on her clit, in harmony with his cock hitting that note inside her, over and over again. He did what he'd done hundreds of times before, with her permission - she knew to safeword if this was a problem - and used the Force to tie her wrists to the bed with the rope they kept nearby. Now she was completely under his power, and he propped her other leg on his shoulder, driving in as hard as he could. "Fuck, yes, yes, yes Malak FUCK ME," Reine cried. Her breasts were bouncing with each thrust, and it was the sight of those tits and the look of lust on her face that undid him. She came just before he did, squeezing hard around his cock, gushing, gasping with her release. "Reine," he cried out, joy ringing through him. "Oh, fuck, Reine. Fuck. I love you. I love you..."

He started to cry again, and when he untied her wrists, they held each other, crying together.

After awhile, Reine stroked his cheek and looked into his eyes and said, "You should be Emperor."

Malak snorted. "Been there, done that." He kissed her nose. "But you, milady, are my Empress." He kissed her hand, and placed it to his heart.

"You sure do treat me like one."

"You deserve it."

Reine skritched his chin like he was a big cat. "If you think I deserve it... what I'd really like is to see you happy. You've been so sad the last few days, and it's understandable - we're all upset - but it just breaks my heart. You're a good man. I want you to try to have fun today."

"Well, we're off to a good start." Malak kissed her, grinning.

Reine pursed her lips. "You know, my brother could use a friend. And it would go a ways towards making up for what was done to him in the First Order."

"OK, so...?"

Reine scratched her head. "We also could use some... I don't know, stuff... now that we're settling into our own place here. And Grandpa's down the hall." There were a limited amount of villas on Dooku's estate, and Mace Windu was staying in theirs, since there was enough space for him to have his own room and have access to things without cramping their style. "We should take Finn and Grandpa shopping."

"OK." Malak nodded. "I'll see if my brothers want to tag along."

"Good idea."

_

As the sun rose over Carannia, Neryt Dooku-Fett rode her swoop bike through the city.

Swoop racing had become popular on Serenno in recent years - Neryt had learned how to ride a swoop bike from her Fett relations on Mandalore, and she was hoping to enter the swoop tournament in two months. Her mother strongly disapproved of the sport - swoop bikes could go up to 600 kilometers an hour, so even though they came with shielding and racers wore protective gear, Irina still had legitimate concerns for Neryt's safety - but Neryt was an adult now, and it was a productive way of channeling her hyperactivity.

That, and martial arts. She'd learned how to fight like a Mandalorian... but she was Force-sensitive, and itching to learn how to fight with a lightsaber, fight with the Force.

Neryt didn't just love the thrill of swoop racing, but the feeling of freedom as she raced against the wind. To enhance the mood, she liked listening to loud music on earphones as she rode, and today's selection was heavy metal - something her elderly uncle also enjoyed, much to her surprise.[1]

When she got back to the palace, Ben and Dennis - who had been invited on a shopping trip into the city and were meeting everyone at the palace - saw her getting off her swoop bike, in a leather jacket and sunglasses, taking off her biker helmet (custom-built for her montrals), and their jaws both dropped, especially when they saw how her leather riding pants showed off her ass.

Neryt walked past them, cool and nonchalant. "Sup, boys?" she asked.

Ben and Dennis followed them in, flanked by the kids. "Is that your bike?" Owen asked.

"Sure is."

"Can I ride it?"

Neryt laughed. "You're not old enough, honey. It goes really fast. It's too dangerous for someone your age."

Owen pouted.

"Is that a swoop?" Ben asked, and immediately felt like a moron, because obviously it was, and he didn't know why he asked such an obvious question.

"No, it's a broom. I was playing Quidditch." She was referring to the popular Parry Hotter holonovel series.

Ben bitchfaced, and Dennis cackled.

"How did someone from House Dooku get into swoop racing?" Dennis asked.

Now that was a legitimate question. "I'm also from Clan Fett. I learned when I was ten and still living on Mandalore." Neryt grinned. "Mom was pissed."

"I wonder what your uncle thinks," Dennis said.

"Her uncle," Dooku intoned from the living room, "used to be quite a bike enthusiast when he was in his late teens and early twenties, so... she is proving she has my blood."

Neryt's grin got bigger as she stepped into the living room. "I heard stories about you."

"I was quite a hellion for awhile."

Sev snorted. "I would have loved to see pictures of that." Sev grinned. "You know, since there are so many other interesting pictures of you out there."

Dooku bitchfaced.

Irina gave a small, evil smirk. "Indeed." And then Sev and Dooku knew exactly what she meant by that, and both turned pink.[2]

Then Irina bitchfaced at Neryt. "Glad to see you made it back in one piece."

"I always do, Mom."

Reine had just walked in, and tilted her head to one side. "Bike riding?"

"Swoop riding," Irina said, crisply, in a way that strongly indicated she did not approve.

Reine's face lit up. "You ride a swoop bike? How fuckin' cool is that?" Then she noticed the kids and said, "I mean, um..."

The kids giggled, and Ben said, "Yeah, I think it's a lost cause to try to watch our language around the kids."

"Yes, I ride a swoop," Neryt said. "I'm planning on riding competitively, in fact."

"Holy shit." Reine grinned. "You think you could teach me?"

"Yeah... if you get a bike. I know where, though."

"Wow, you'd ride a swoop?" Malak turned to Reine, looking impressed. Reine nodded vigorously.

Finn said, "Not me. My pilot boyfriend does enough thrill seeking for the both of us." Finn couldn't wait for Poe to show up at the Resistance summit in two days - he hadn't seen Poe in almost a year.

"Aww, look at you getting all excited like a little puppy," Reine said, and pinched her brother's cheek. Finn smiled, and Mace chuckled at them.

"So, are we about ready to go?" Sev asked.

"Who's the final count of who's coming with us?" Malak said.

"Uh, me, you, Dennis, Ben, the kids, Reine, Finn, Mace..."

"Go with you, I would like to," said Yoda, strolling into the living room.

"You all should bring someone with you who is familiar with the city," Dooku said. "Irina and I are going to be meeting with some of the Counts and Contessas of Serenno to discuss impending strategy, so I will not be available..."

Sev looked at Neryt. "You want to come with, or are you busy?"

"Yeah, I'll go with you," Neryt said, "though it'll take me awhile to get ready."

"What you have on is fine, if you're OK wearing that."

Neryt shrugged. "Sure, why not."

The group piled into a speeder van - Neryt decided to drive, since she knew her way around, and Ben sat in the passenger's seat. Neryt drove a little on the fast side, but not enough to be dangerous; she also liked to have music on when she drove, so the group was subjected to loud rock, which didn't bother Ben, but seemed to annoy some of the others. Their first stop was going to be the office of Ari Camwyr, a psychologist in Carannia, who Dennis had spoken with awhile ago - the psychologist made room for an evaluation and outpatient intake for the children, considering it a priority. Since Ari was also the cousin of the Yusanis triplets, Dennis was going to take some time to get caught up with him - Sev and Malak decided they'd see Ari another time, and Ben didn't want to intrude on the reunion, so they'd be dropping Dennis and the kids off at the medical group building and picking them up in a few hours.

After they dropped off Dennis and the kids, their first stop was a department store that had home furnishings. Malak and Reine's villa was fully furnished and stocked with appliances, cookware, and the like, but they wanted to buy some odds and ends to make the place more like their own - curtains, bedding, maybe a few decorative items, maybe pick out dinnerware with a pattern to their liking.

"This is the most domestic thing I've ever done," Malak mused as he got lost in the endless varieties of dish sets.

"It's like we're a real married couple or something," Reine teased.

Mace missed the purple decor he had at his apartment at the New Force Order Temple campus, and found himself buying a purple bedroom set... and then he and Reine agreed upon a purple couch cover and purple couch pillows for the living room.

And then Reine sized him up and said, "Grandpa, we really need to get you some clothes."

"I'm wearing clothes." Mace scowled.

"Those are not clothes. Those are Jedi robes." Reine scowled back. "You're not a Jedi anymore. The Force has no law that says you have to wear fugly shit to use the Force."

Mace bitchfaced.

Finn made a tsk noise. "Sis is right, Grandpa. People are, like... looking at you funny."

"From a purely psychological standpoint," Ben told him, "it'll be good for your mental health. An active show of moving on, away from the past, into the future."

"Oh, all right. Dammit." Mace shook his head. "Fine, you win, you... meddling..." Mace muttered under his breath.

Then Sev looked at Yoda. "We ought to get you some civvies too, old man."

"Hrmm. If my size you can find, new clothes, I will wear."

Neryt fought the urge to make a remark about giving house elves clothing, and she said, "There's a tailor Uncle goes to, who can custom-make clothing in any size. I'll bring you there when we're done here... it's on the way to a men's clothing store we can bring Mace to."

After Reine and Malak made their purchases, and Mace made his, the group piled back into the speeder van. This time Sev said, "I call shotgun," and got in the passenger's seat, and Ben sat where Sev had been sitting.

Before they got too far, Sev reached to change the dial on the music player, to another station.

"What do you think you're doing?" Neryt asked him.

"Putting on some different music?"

Neryt bitchfaced. "Driver picks the music, shotgun shuts his cakehole." Then she gave Sev a wicked grin that let him know "cakehole" had a double meaning.

Sev facepalmed. "Oh goddammit, that's the second time today."

"Second time for what?" Ben asked.

Neryt began cackling. Sev made a Wookiee noise.

"Let's just say," Neryt said, "I found out some things about what Uncle Idis and Uncle Sev are into that nobody wants to know."

"Oh, no," Malak said, "it's of great interest."

"OK, COULD WE NOT," Sev said. "At least... not right now. Not without Idis to bitchface at the discussion."

Then Neryt and Sev laughed together.

Sev then reached for the dial again. "I'm changing the damn station for this part of the trip."

He put on a station that played rap, hip-hop, and classic funk. An old funk song came on right after Sev changed the channel, that everyone knew:

"War! Huh, good gods, y'all. What is it good for?"

Instead of "Absolutely nothing", Reine sang in response, "The Brat tiara..."[3]

Sev laughed so hard he cried.

_

The tailor was very courteous and prompt with taking Yoda's measurements, and then letting Yoda look through a hologallery of clothing styles that could be custom-made in that size. Sev and Ben offered opinions, and Yoda considered them, and then proceeded to order a week's worth of different outfits, charged to Dooku's credits card; he'd be picking them up in four days.

The men's clothing store was a bit more difficult. Mace felt self-conscious and it took him a long time to decide, and he changed his mind several times before picking out a series of shirts and pants to try on. He favored darker colors - all black, and then burgundy, dark grey, and dark blue. He did however pick out a few different shades of purple shirts, not just dark purple but also lighter shades, some more on the blue end of the spectrum, some more to the red end, some more muted, some more saturated. In the end he had ten shirts and seven pairs of trousers - five of the ten shirts were some shade of purple, and four of the seven pairs of trousers were black, two pairs were dark grey, and one was dark purple - and he took Finn's suggestion to get a few vests, in purples and greys and black. When Mace tried on civilian clothes and came out of the fitting room to get opinions, everyone was shocked by the change - the Jedi robes were baggy and the civilian clothes more form-fitting, showing off the muscles conditioned by years of Jedi training. Sev knew Mace would probably have a figure close to Dooku's, who himself was well-built, with nice definition that Sev loved to worship - but it was one thing to know that logically and another thing to see it demonstrated. A woman who came into the men's clothing store, presumably with her husband, practically drooled at Mace, and Reine and Finn noticed it and ribbed Mace about it on his way back to the speeder van.

"You could have an entire harem at your fingertips, Grandpa," Reine teased him.

"Oh, Force." Mace shook his head and made a Wookiee noise. For some reason he thought of Irina, and wondered what she'd think of the new him. Why am I thinking like this.

A short distance from the men's clothing store was Temptations, an adult-themed store that Neryt had brought Sev to during his first visit to Serenno. Neryt and Sev looked at each other, nodding and grinning, and parked the speeder van in the lot.

"Uh... what are we doing?" Mace looked decidedly uncomfortable.

"Well I can't speak for the rest of you, but I'm gonna buy me some lingerie to impress my husband with," Sev said, hopping out of the van. Then he noticed this was the second time he'd called Dooku his "husband" in a week, and they weren't formally married yet - they were still just engaged. I already think of him as my husband. Sev found himself OK with this.

It was very obviously Mace Windu's first time in such a store, and would have been for Ben as well if he hadn't been to The Black Lotus a few days before leaving Arcturus. It was, surprisingly, not Yoda's first time in such a store, and Sev found himself muttering "oh dear Force" when Yoda made a beeline for the vibrator and buttplug section.

Neryt and Sev both looked at the lingerie together, and then Ben sauntered over there, to consider sexy underwear for himself, that Dennis might enjoy looking at him wearing. Ben raised an eyebrow at Neryt. "So, uh... who are you seeing?"

"Oh, I'm not seeing anybody right now," Neryt said, holding up pale pink lacy panties and examining them, as Ben's mind raced with mental images of what she would look like in those panties. "I like to look sexy for myself."

You sure do a good job of that. Then it hit Ben. He got another series of mental images - specifically, memories - of when he was Revan, and Mission Vao, once she had come of age, was in a relationship with him and Dennis's Meetra. Oh, shit. It's Mission.

Ben didn't know how to react, and didn't know what else to say, so he shuffled off, feeling like an idiot. Well, at least I didn't give her any cheesy pickup lines like "Are you an angel?"[4]

"Ooh, lingerie." Reine ninja-pounced in the lingerie aisle, making Sev and Neryt laugh. "While Malak's looking at the toys... I'll try to surprise him."

It took awhile for the group to browse and pick out what they wanted, and when they were just about ready to check out and pay for their items, Sev ran a finger through his curls and asked, "Uh, where's Yoda?"

As if on cue, Yoda came out of a fitting room area and said, "Look, how do I?"

Yoda was wearing assless black leather chaps, and black nipple tassels, and nothing else.

"GAAAAAAAAHHHH," Ben wailed.

"Oh shit," Reine squeaked.

Sev took out his holocamera and took some pictures. "In case Idis needs something to bitchface at."

"He might just surgically attach the Brat tiara to your head," Reine said. "You might never sit again."

Sev grinned. "That would be tragic."

"Wow, Sev. Just. Wow."

And then Sev stroked his beard. "And hell, if the First Order tries to fuck with us... this could be a form of ammo, right?"

"Oh, fuck." Malak almost fell over laughing.

"Fire my cannon, I will," Yoda quipped. "Fire Chewie's cannon, also."

"I... can't..." Now Malak did fall over laughing.

"You ain't right, Sev," Finn said.

"Nope." Sev's evil grin got even bigger and more evil.

Chapter Text

When the group got back from their excursion into the city, Dooku was still having his meeting with the Counts and Contessas of Serenno, in the large banquet hall. Irina was in attendance as she had been the representative of House Dooku among the Houses for the last four years, Isshaddik and Chewbacca were providing security - more of a formality - and Leia, Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon had been asked to sit in and offer their perspectives if it came up, as people who had been personally affected by the machinations of the First Order.

Sev took a nap, and that was how Dooku found him when the meeting adjourned - curled up with the cats, holding his Big Bird doll, looking innocent and vulnerable. Dooku watched him sleep for a few minutes, enjoying the sweetness, before he woke up his bondmate by gently rubbing his feet.

"Mmmmm, that's nice." Sev rolled over, stretched, and made a purring sound.

Dooku stopped when Drogo walked over to him, gave him a headbutt, and climbed onto him, insisting that he get some rubs too, so Dooku began petting his cat, and Sev sat up, yawning.

"How did the meeting go?" Sev asked, his voice husky with sleep.

Dooku nodded. "It went well. The other noble Houses are on board with Serenno as part of the Commonwealth of Independent Systems, possibly even its capital world." Then he frowned. "There is one thing, however."

Sev raised an eyebrow. "What?"

Dooku took a deep breath. "They have elected me Regent of Serenno."

"That's like the king or prime minister, right?"

"Correct."

Sev folded his arms. "I thought you hate politics."

"I do." Dooku scowled. "Notice the word they. It wasn't my choice, but the Counts and Contessas said that Serenno's membership in the Commonwealth is contingent upon me becoming its Regent, because they feel it will look more professional and make a stronger case for CIS to the other worlds here in the D'Astan System if I'm the head of state on my own homeworld, as well as it cutting out the middleman with regards to any executive decisions that have to be made regarding planetary defense or a CIS military presence here. The Serennian attitude is very much 'if you thought of the idea, you should shoulder the responsibility of executing it if possible', so this is where it went." Dooku took Sev's hand. "Your title would be Regent Consort, and when we are formally married, it's going to be a bigger event than I had previously intended, now that it's a head of state wedding... so we will need a few weeks to plan, but I don't want to put it off too much longer."

Sev nodded. "When are you being sworn in as Regent?"

"A week from today. There's a ceremony for that, which the Singer performs." Dooku skritched Drogo's chin. "Count Nalju himself has made some non-subtle remarks about wanting to retire from the Singer job soon. Unlike the Regent position which is elected by the other Counts and Contessas, the Singer hand-picks his replacement. Count Nalju has been the Singer for over a hundred years, he's entitled to a break, I say."

"We all need a break." Sev sighed.

Dooku felt the twinge in their Force bond, and he put Drogo back down on the bed and pulled Severin into his arms. He stroked Sev's curls and kissed the top of his head. "You're troubled," Dooku observed.

Sev sighed again. "When Dennis and I escaped the Finalizer... we did it by taking Valyeris hostage, like I told you. He put a blaster to her head. I kept my blaster on her too and as we ran to the hangar, I told any passing soldiers to drop their weapon and get on their knees or we'd shoot Valyeris in the head. Since she's the Commander's wife, they had to take this seriously, or he would hold them directly responsible for why she got it. So they did as I said... but once they were disarmed and on their knees, I killed them. I lost count after a dozen, but I think I killed close to thirty people by the time we got in the TIE fighter."

"And you're feeling guilty about killing thirty people." A pause. "Thirty First Order soldiers."

"Thirty unarmed First Order soldiers."

Dooku laughed. "Child, you know from your own experience as a First Order soldier that there is truly no such thing as an 'unarmed' First Order soldier. You told me yourself that they are rather brutal with their training and all soldiers know how to kill bare-handed. You had no way of knowing and verifying that just because someone dropped their blaster and got on their knees, that they wouldn't have a moment of wanting to be 'a hero' and try to stop you, taking you by surprise once your back was turned and you assumed you had nothing to fear from them. It was a kill or be killed situation, and you did what you had to do to survive."

"Yeah."

"You also told me that you and Dennis chose to spare Valyeris's life because she's pregnant."

Sev just nodded.

"If you needed evidence that you're not a psychotic mass murderer, that's your evidence." Dooku skritched Sev's curls. "But." He cupped Sev's chin in his hand, and made Sev meet his eyes - he noticed the tears in Sev's own. "You will not like what I am about to say, and I am going to say this anyway because it is a truth you will have to accept in order to keep your sanity in the days to come." Dooku frowned. "By the time this is all over, you will be directly and personally responsible for the deaths of far more than thirty people. You will be responsible for the death of thousands, possibly even the deaths of millions of First Order soldiers. And you will be responsible for their deaths, you will wear this blood on your hands, because the alternative is billions, trillions, maybe even quadrillions, of innocent civilians, dead or worse than dead. It is one thing to have a conscience and to wish that none of this were necessary - there are things that I did during the Clone Wars, that I wish I had not had to do. But it is another thing to begin hating yourself and casting yourself in the role of monster because you are doing something you have to do not merely for your own survival, but to protect countless other people. If you did not kill those thirty people on your way off the Finalizer, there is a very good chance you and Dennis would both be dead, and his children would be without one of their fathers, and possibly without both because I don't think Ben would have been able to take it, after Alyssa - and indeed, that seems quite intentional on Kylo Ren's part. Which leads me to the other point of this speech. What Kylo did, with taking you and Dennis on board his ship and forcing you to execute your brother or be executed yourself - exactly like what was done to Ben, with Alyssa - ...that was very deliberate. He knew it would set off a chain reaction for the entire group - regardless of whether you killed your own brother and it broke you, or you didn't kill him and Kylo killed you - I would be affected, Malak would be affected, Leia would be affected, which would affect Qui and Obi... it would impact all of us. This is a man who very deliberately calculated for the maximum amount of suffering to the maximum amount of people - people who had identified themselves as his friends or at least his allies, until more recently. So do you think Kylo Ren cares if he kills thirty, or thirty billion? We are fighting a madman, we are fighting a sadist, and in that fight we are necessarily going to have to get ugly. There is no 'playing nice' with someone like him. There are lines we won't cross... but there are lines we will have to cross, and you will know them when you see them. You cannot get in your own way of doing what has to be done, when the time comes."

"You're right." Sev scowled. "Still sucks."

Dooku checked the time. "We have a little over an hour before dinner. It seems you could use some stress relief." He got up off the bed, and pulled Sev to his feet. "Come."

Dooku ran the hot tub in the 'fresher, and as they waited for it to be ready, he retrieved a bottle of Serennian champagne from the fridge and brought it in, with two glasses. Once the hot tub was ready for them, they undressed and climbed in, and Dooku used the Force to pour them each a glass of champagne. They drank and leaned on each other, relaxing in the heat, bubbles, and scent of lavender oil that Dooku added to the tub. When Sev looked a little less tense, Dooku kissed him and said, "I love you, my own."

Sev stroked his whiskers. "I love you too, Idis." He kissed Dooku back, and then he kissed the tip of Dooku's nose.

"You know..." Dooku stroked Sev's curls. "If I've not said this before now... I'm proud of you."

"Hm?"

"When you and Dennis escaped from the Finalizer. You'd told me how you made it look like you were going to execute him and then cut off a lock of his hair, set it on fire, and ignited the flammable Stormtrooper armor, using that as your window of escape. That was brilliant." Dooku stroked Sev's face, his beard. "And I know getting the TIE fighter was harrowing for you, so you showed courage."

Sev nodded. "Well, we weren't in hyperspace long, before General Doogie showed up."

"Yes. But he doesn't get all the credit for saving the day." Dooku gave Sev a small smile. "You've come a long way from when you first began your apprenticeship to me. You still need some work... but you have made a tremendous amount of progress, and I am pleased with what I see."

"Are you." Sev leered and posed, taking it as a double entendre.

"Mmm, very." Dooku reached under the water and his index finger lightly brushed Sev's cock, waking it up.

They kissed again. "That means a lot to me," Sev husked. "You don't give praise often, so I know when it's given, it's earned."

"You most certainly have earned it." Dooku kissed Sev again.

They cuddled some more, and Dooku felt Sev's angst about the soldiers he'd killed, resurfacing. He began to knead Sev's shoulders. "You have to stop doing this to yourself," he told Sev.

Sev just sighed.

Dooku tilted Sev's head to face him. "You are not a monster." He glared. "I would not have fallen in love with you if you were." He put his hand on Severin's heart. "You are my rose. Delicate petals... and sharp thorns."

Sev couldn't find anything to say in response, but continued to frown.

Dooku took Sev's hands in his. "You do know, that though I am an old man, you are my first love. I have given you my heart. I have trusted you with my heart... because you are worthy of that trust."

He squeezed Sev's hands, and then he lowered his head, his mouth closer to Sev's ears. "And I have trusted you with my body... doing things with you I have never done with anyone else." He licked Sev's ear, and gently nibbled the pointy tip before sucking it, making Sev groan. He licked his way back down Sev's ear, and said, "You need to be reminded of that trust. I want to hold you." He kissed Sev's neck. "I want to hold you with all of me."

Sev gasped a little. "You mean you want...?"

"I want you inside me." Since the inception of their relationship, Dooku had only bottomed for Sev once before, though they'd done anal play a few other times so he'd been penetrated with tongue, fingers, vibrator, and, at one point, a squash.

Sev took a deep breath, shuddering with the delicious mental images going through his mind. While he preferred to bottom where Dooku was concerned, he did enjoy topping, and the memory of Dooku's tightness wrapping around him and the way the old Sith Lord had completely surrendered his passion made his cock twinge.

Dooku looked at the time again. "But we do need to go to dinner soon... so afterwards."

"You fucking cocktease."

Dooku smiled. "Twice the buildup, double the release." He got out of the hot tub, his own erection proud, taunting his bondmate. Sev growled, and Dooku growled back, making Sev's cock twinge even more. When Dooku pulled Sev out of the hot tub and into his kiss, he teased Sev even more by reaching to caress Sev's cock, fingers languorously playing over the shaft, around the head. He found Sev already leaking for him, and said, "My, what's this," collecting precum onto his fingers and tasting it. Sev whimpered.

Dooku laughed at him, smacking his ass on the way out of the 'fresher.

"Bastard," Sev snarled.

"My pet, I may be inbred, but I am no bastard."

Sev used the Force to throw a towel at Dooku, and he ducked out of the way at the last second so Sev missed. Dooku laughed harder.

_

Dinner was delicious, but it was not as delicious as lovemaking, and Sev found himself increasingly frustrated as the meal wore on. Dooku revelled in it, taking his sweet time, and when dessert came - Dooku's favorite, cherries surprise - he ate with a sensual enjoyment and a twinkle of mischief in his eyes that made Sev kick him under the table.

Do you want to end up wearing that like last time?

Dooku's lips quirked. I think this poor table has seen enough sex for one week, dearest.

When Dooku took his last bite of dessert - long after everyone else had finished - Sev yanked him and dragged him off to their bedroom; Dooku didn't even get the chance to make his usual end-of-the-evening pleasantries to his sister and niece and nephew.

Once they were in the bedroom, Sev shoved Dooku against the wall and kissed him hard. Dooku groaned into the kiss, and cupped Sev's ass, rubbing it in slow, lazy circles.

"We have all the time in the world for each other," Dooku said, "and I would like to spoil you a little." He kissed down Sev's neck, making Sev moan. "Would you like a massage?"

As badly as Sev wanted to fuck, the idea of feeling Dooku's hands all over him was too good to pass up. "Mmmmmmm, yes." He kissed Dooku. "But only if I get to massage you, too."

"All right." Dooku smiled.

Sev watched as Dooku pushed up a panel in the wall in the recreational area of their bedroom suite, revealing a gas fireplace behind a glass panel. It was autumn in Carannia, and the nights were chilly enough now that lighting a fireplace was not unreasonable. Dooku lit the fireplace, and Sev smiled at the blue-and-gold flames - Sev liked fire.

Dooku turned down the lights in the suite, and lit candles along the fireplace mantle. He went into a closet and rolled out a small mattress pad, placing it in front of the fireplace, and then he put bedding over it. Sev fed the cats and gave them water, and then he undressed while Dooku visited the 'fresher. Dooku came out in just a small towel wrapped around his waist, and then he took it off, Sev's eyes locked on his erection.

Sev and Dooku lay down in front of the fireplace. Dooku had a small bottle of Serennian rose oil - hundreds of credits per ounce - and he let Sev take a whiff once it was opened. It was heavenly. Dooku poured just a little onto his fingers and worked them into Sev's scalp. Sev groaned appreciatively, leaning his head on Dooku's shoulder. "You have such pretty hair," Dooku told him, "and this will be good to condition those curls of yours." He played with them, and Sev smiled adoringly.

Dooku continued to work Sev's scalp, and just that alone was magic. Sev felt all of his tension and anxiety swept away beneath Dooku's fingers, spiralling, soothing, making Sev's scalp tingle... making his spine tingle, hardening his cock. "My beautiful boy." Dooku took the point of Sev's right ear between his teeth, giving a gentle tug, making Sev gasp, and then he sucked on it and Sev cried out, his cock leaping as the sensitive point was teased.

"Fuck," Sev whined.

"Mmmmmm." Dooku licked down Sev's ear, and kissed his neck, kissing and licking and nibbling as Sev moaned and shivered, his neck another major erogenous zone. Dooku knew how to play him like a maestro, knew all the ways to undo him and turn him into a sobbing, writhing wreck long before he ever got to Sev's genitals. Dooku kissed that sweet spot where the neck met the shoulder, and Sev yelped, and Dooku's nails raked down Sev's back, making him shiver again, before Dooku patted Sev's ass. "Lie on your stomach, pet."

Sev did as he was told, and Dooku straddled Sev's knees, and then Sev felt the warmed oil poured onto his back - just a little went a long way. Dooku began to work the oil into his skin, first with a light touch, up and down - a slow, sensual caress - and then pressing harder, kneading, finding knots Sev didn't even know he had, making them ache, and then melting the ache away, leaving just radiant bliss in its place. Sev felt the Force flowing through Dooku's hands, the burning shadow of the first layer of Dooku's Force signature rolling into and over him like velvet - Dooku was a dangerous man, but Sev felt cozy and safe. From Sev's shoulders to his buttocks, Dooku was very thorough, making his flesh practically sing. After rounds of kneading in different patterns and with varying degrees of pressure, Dooku was back to caressing the back of him, fingers playing down his spine - every now and again Dooku's erection brushed the crack of Sev's ass, making Sev moan.

From Sev's ass, Dooku worked on the back of his legs, starting with the left, down the thigh and the calf, to the feet. The foot rub Sev had woken up to was wonderful, but it paled in comparison to the foot massage, where his soles and tendons and arches were soothed. There were more knots in Sev's muscles down each leg, and they were softened, undone. The change in the amount of tension was so drastic that Sev felt like he was made of bacta by the time Dooku was done. Dooku had to help him roll onto his back, so he could work on the front of him.

This time there was a lot less kneading, and a lot more caressing. Dooku's hands played over Sev all the ways that he liked, adoring him, anointing him with the oil like he was the statue of a deity - and the worship in Dooku's eyes as he ogled every inch of his bondmate was plain to see. Dooku thought Severin Yusanis was walking proof of the Living Force, perfect in his beauty, and he wanted Sev to know that - whatever anyone else had ever thought of him, ever said to him or done to him, it was irrelevant now. Sev was his treasure. Dooku wanted Sev to feel the love and the desire in his touch, wanted to arouse him and open the way for deeper passion.

Sev's body was glistening now, enhancing the definition in his lean sculpted muscles, and the light touch of hair on his arms and legs, the curly dark bush framing his beautiful thick cock. Dooku oiled that too, his hand stroking Sev slowly, then faster, harder, until Sev thought he was going to climax - and then Dooku stopped, and Sev whimpered from frustration. Dooku knew what he was doing, knowing Sev's orgasm would be all the more intense for having to wait.

Sev gave Dooku a look that was almost angry in its lustful need. "Get on your stomach, old man."

Dooku raised an eyebrow, but he did as he was told. Sev poured a little oil onto Dooku's back, and began to rub, wanting to give Dooku the same treatment he'd received. As Sev found the knots and eased them, he admired his bondmate - Dooku was in excellent condition for his age, having the body one would expect on an athlete decades younger, his age only given away by the wrinkles on his face and the white hair on his head and face and body. Dooku had a great back, something Sev didn't often appreciate on men because usually a back was just a back... but this one was sculpted by years of physical training. Sev found himself kissing the back of Dooku's neck, making him moan, and then kissed down his spine, Dooku's moans getting louder, breathing harder. Sev's fingers trailed in the wake of his kisses - fingertips on one side, nails on the other. For a brief instant Dooku thought he was going to come, and it was all he could do to not whimper when Sev nibbled on the base of his spine.

"You're so hot, Idis. Even your back is hot."

"I'll take your word for it."

"You've got a sexy back." A pause. "Them other Sith Lords don't know how to act."

"What?"

"Never mind."

Sev could feel Dooku rolling his eyes, and he gave Dooku a playful swat on his ass. Usually Sev was the one to get spanked, and while he gave the swat impulsively, Dooku's response of "You know you've just earnt yourself a spanking next time," made Sev grin, and he patted Dooku's ass approvingly.

Then he ogled Dooku's ass - firm and bubble-shaped - as he stroked and kneaded it. "You've got a great ass. Unf." Sev licked his lips. "Fuck, your ass is a work of art."

Dooku chuckled. "That might be stretching a bit."

"Nope." Sev wet his fingers. "This is stretching." He put his index finger inside, making Dooku gasp and moan, and after a minute of playing, he added the middle finger. Rubbing and kneading each ass cheek with one hand, fingering with the other. Dooku groaned, his hands clenching and unclenching the pillows like a cat kneading as it was being pet. Dooku made a sound close to a purr, and Sev sighed, his cock twinging again at the sensuality of it all. "Fuck, I want you."

"You shall have me."

"You're goddamn right." Sev took out his fingers, and set to work on Dooku's left leg, from the thigh down the calf to the foot and back up, and then the right leg, stroking and kneading in circles, gentle then firm, hard then soft. Sev resumed rubbing Dooku's ass again, and teased by brushing the tip of his leaking cock against Dooku's opening, making them both moan. Then Sev said, "On your back."

Working the oil into Dooku's chest didn't just make Dooku groan, it made Sev groan too. Seeing the silver-white hair on his chest glistening, his deep pink nipples swollen and wet... it was all Sev could do to not take him right away. The six-pack abs, the sculpted biceps, the white fur on his arms... the white treasure trail and bush glistening too, the white hair on his firm, powerful thighs... Sev bit his lower lip, whimpering a little. Dooku could feel Sev's raw lust for him, and the initial fluster of modesty gave way to excitement. He liked knowing Sev found him attractive, didn't think he was too old... Sev commented on it, running his fingers through the white hair on his chest. "So fucking sexy," Sev growled. "Like a wolf."

Their eyes met, remembering their wolf-and-Little-Red-Cape roleplaying from just a few days before.

"This wolf is hungry for you, little one."

"I'm even hungrier for you." Sev leaned in and kissed Dooku hard, and then kissed down Dooku's neck, nibbling and licking and kissing every inch of his throat, making Dooku crazy with the sensitive skin teased by Sev's teeth and lips and tongue. Sev kissed across one shoulder, then back over the collarbone to the other, before kissing his neck some more - Dooku was going to have a set of hickeys tomorrow, and he didn't care. Sev kissed his way down to one nipple, lapping and suckling, and nuzzled and laved the chest hair across to the other. He pulled it with his lips, suckling harder, lapping faster, then slower licks, the fingers of one hand playing with the other nipple... the fingers of the other hand inside him again. Dooku arched to Sev's explorations, moaning with helpless need.

Sev continued to work on his nipples, spending a few moments on one then going back to the other, over and over again, until Dooku was gasping for breath, grabbing Sev's ears, rolling his hips to slowly fuck Sev's fingers rubbing his prostate. "Please," Dooku heard himself cry out. "Please, my own..."

Sev looked up with a wicked grin. "Please, what?"

"Take me."

"Ohhhh, Count Takes-All-Night-To-Eat-Every-Last-Crumb-Of-Dinner... you think you're getting off so easily? You know who you're dealing with, right?"

"Oh, fuck," Dooku said, before he could stop himself.

Sev's grin got bigger, and more evil. He kissed and licked down Dooku's abs - the taste of the rose oil was a bit odd, but not unpleasant, and he'd heard roses had vitamins or something - and then he put his tongue in Dooku's navel. Dooku gasped again, arching once more to Sev's mouth. Sev laughed into Dooku's bush, his tongue licking slowly up the shaft, and he took a few slow swirling licks at the head of Dooku's cock, making a show of the precum streaming onto his tongue, before he took Dooku's cock into his mouth, his eyes locked with Dooku's like they were engaged at war.

Sev sucked Dooku slowly... slow and hard. One hand cupped and rubbed Dooku's balls, as he fucked three fingers inside him, rubbing in lazy circles on the prostate. Dooku felt himself edging again, so close to completely losing control in Sev's mouth... but he held back. He held back, until he couldn't hold back anymore, and then he warned Sev, "If you keep doing that, I'm going to come."

Sev let go, and took a teasing lick down the shaft. They looked at each other for a minute and then Sev made his next move - he took his fingers out of Dooku's ass and replaced them with his tongue. Dooku gave a hoarse shout of tormented pleasure, clutching at Sev's head, rolling his hips and gently fucking Sev's mouth as Sev tongue-fucked his prostate. "Severin," Dooku bellowed. "Sev... my love..." And then he couldn't make words. Just sounds. Moaning, louder and louder, pulling Sev's hair, pulling his ears, Sev's tongue setting off shocks inside him, but not yet the thunderbolt of orgasm. It was utterly exquisite teasing, Dooku worked up more and more until he was trembling, panting, his left foot involuntarily thumping like a rabbit's as his balls tightened to the brink of orgasm but not over the edge. Sev licked slower, humming into him, and Dooku cried out, the pressure building even tighter, deeper and higher, until he was nothing but primal need.

"Fuck me," Dooku begged him.

Sev pulled his tongue out of Dooku's ass. "Oh, my. Do the Counts of Serenno know their appointed Regent uses such language?"

"FUCKING FUCK ME FUCKING NOW." The wild look in Dooku's eyes was almost frightening... and went straight to Sev's cock.

Sev used the Force to pour more rose oil onto his cock, and stroked himself, with Dooku watching hungrily. "So you want this cock?"

"Dammit, Severin. Take me."

"Mmmmm..." Sev continued stroking himself and bit his lip, closing his eyes as a shudder went through him. "You didn't answer my question, milord..."

Dooku huffed. "Yes. Please. I want you inside me. Now."

Sev bumped the head of his cock against Dooku's opening, and began the slow push inside. "Breathe out and push, love," Sev said. It went in easier this time - Sev had gotten him very, very ready, almost unbearably ready.

Sev waited a moment for Dooku to get adjusted to the length and thickness of him, stretching the tight channel, before he began to thrust. Sev kept it slow, not wanting to hurt him, but they were both aroused enough that it wasn't long before Dooku urged him on faster, rocking his hips against Sev's, fucking Sev's cock just as much as Sev was fucking his ass. Sev gripped Dooku's curved cock in his hand, stroking it hard, and Dooku cupped Sev's ass with his hands, guiding his thrusts. The rhythm of hungry male sex sent them both to that edge sooner rather than later and then they were locked there, not wanting to stop, the pleasure building and building, the two men not able to get enough of the way their bodies hit that note of wild, frenzied ecstasy over and over again. Their orgasm shimmered just out of reach - the act of raw sex was just as good as an orgasm, the delicious intensity consuming them body and soul. In the Force they could feel what the other was feeling, like being penetrated and penetrating at the same time. Feeling the desire for each other, the love... the surrender. The gift of trust, letting their guards completely down and being animal together...

...the animal passion giving way to something more sublime.

Between the way Sev's cock hit his prostate just right, and Sev's hand stroked his cock, the two sources of pleasure brought Dooku off in an explosive way. He gave a deep, loud grunt as his climax took him, firing onto Sev's chest. The feeling of Dooku's cum shooting onto his nipples, the sight and sound of Dooku as his body heaved with the spasms of pleasure, and the way Dooku's ass clenched around his cock over and over again... Sev screamed as he shot deep inside his bondmate, and Dooku cried out as he felt Sev's cum flooding him, setting off another wave of blissful pulses through him.

Their orgasm was so shattering it made them cry tears of relief... tears of joy and wonder, that anything could feel so good, that they could make each other feel this good... feeling like they had touched the Force, and they were woven in ribbons of light, their bodies floating together on a sea of contentment. Whatever the future held, with its promise of war... they had this, right now. In these moments, this was all there was.

Sev collapsed onto Dooku's chest, and Dooku wrapped his arms and legs around him, sheltering the young man with his body. "I love you," Dooku told him, petting Sev's curls. He kissed the top of Sev's head, breathing in the intoxicating scent of Serennian rose oil mixed with Sev's sweat.

"I love you, Idis." Sev nuzzled Dooku's chest, snuggling into the warm fur. "I love you so damn much."

A few moments passed, and Dooku said, "Thank you. That was... 'enjoyable' doesn't do the experience justice."

"No, it doesn't." Sev sighed deeply.

"You have made an old man incredibly happy."

Sev pulled himself up a little to kiss the tip of Dooku's nose. "I want to make you happy, Idis. We've both had too much sadness in our lives."

"Well, that is changing." And then Dooku laughed a little.

"What?"

"...I'm leaking." Dooku blushed, and laughed harder.

"Yeah, that happens." Sev looked down, and the sight of his cum oozing out of Dooku's ass would have made his cock start again if he weren't so completely spent. "Wow."

"I'd say we should move to the bed to avoid the wet spot, but I can't move."

"...I'm sorry?"

"You had better not be sorry. I'm not." Dooku smiled, and then he laughed again, and so did Sev.

They drifted off together soon afterwards and slept in front of the fireplace, arms and legs entwined; wet spot or no, it was the best they'd slept in weeks.

Chapter Text

The day of the meeting with the Resistance leaders came. Dooku, Severin, Leia, and Finn went to the spaceport in Carannia so Dooku could personally greet the twelve officers - six men, six women. One of those men was Major Poe Dameron, the youngest and lowest-ranked of the Resistance Council, and as soon as he and Finn laid eyes on each other all professionalism went right out - Finn ran to Poe and Poe picked him up and twirled him around before giving him a passionate kiss.

"Holy shit, I've missed you," Poe said.

Finn started crying a little, not able to help it. His hands ran through Poe's hair, over his face and chest. "I have to make sure you're real," he laughed.

They kissed again, and then their kiss was interrupted by Leia clearing her throat. She gave them a little smile.

"We have a war to fight, so the sooner we get this business discussion done, the better. You'll have time for all of that later," she said.

Poe still carried Finn in his arms to the speeder limo that Dooku had taken out to the spaceport. The Resistance leaders climbed in, and all the way to his palace, Dooku was scowled at by a human woman - early middle age from the looks of it, a little younger than Leia - with purplish-pink hair. Leia finally introduced them. "Dooku, that's Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo. Vice Admiral Holdo, this is Count Idis Dooku, Regent Elect of Serenno..."

"...Darth Tyranus, Dark Lord of the Sith. Former leader of the Separatists. Yes." Vice Admiral Holdo's scowl turned into a look of utter contempt, as she refused to shake his hand.

So she's going to be the hard sell, Leia told Dooku in the Force. Dooku gave a curt nod to acknowledge he'd heard and understood.

From the group on Serenno, the meeting was going to be attended by Dooku, Sev, Leia, Finn, Dennis, Malak, Reine, Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, and Yoda. Ben had the kids and was on standby if he was needed for commentary, and that meant sticking to the estate grounds. Irina was out shopping with Jocasta, but had made preparations that morning, so the Resistance leaders found quite an impressive spread of food waiting for them in the large banquet hall.

Dooku assembled a plate of cheese cubes and fruit slices before taking his seat, and once everyone was seated, he stood. "I would like to thank you for taking time out to come here and, if nothing else, listen. I understand the Resistance is even busier as of late with the conflict escalating around the Outer Rim -"

Vice Admiral Holdo interrupted him. "Did you hear about Arcturus, Count Dooku?"

Dooku frowned. He resisted the urge to chastise Holdo for interrupting him. "We left Arcturus a little over a week ago."

"Yes, well." Holdo folded her hands, and sat up in her seat. "Shortly after you left, the Arca system was taken over by the First Order."

"I'm not surprised by that, unfortunately."

"This may surprise you. I've been brought up to speed with your detective work involving the Bando Gora connection to the First Order, which resulted in the closing of the New Force Order Temple, wherein the Jedi and Sith who had been resurrected to serve the Temple were guaranteed safe passage to Coruscant and Korriban respectively." Holdo squared her jaw. "Guess what."

"Oh no." Dooku gave a little gasp. "Please tell me the First Order didn't -"

"It's a bit worse than that. The ships carrying them vanished. No evidence of attack. Just... poof." She clenched her fist and opened it. "Gone. Nobody knows how or where."

"What the fuck," Dennis said, not able to help the outburst.

Holdo nodded.

"Hrmmm. Disturbance in the Force, I felt. Now I know why." Yoda's ears twitched as he frowned.

"Welp," Dennis said, "you know how we wondered why the Restorers had resurrected all of you? And how cool and calm Kylo was during the announcement of the Temple closing, like he knew this was going to happen? It's almost like they wanted that connection to be discovered, so they could do whatever the fuck happened."

Dooku made a little growl. Then he sat down, and drank water as intensely as anyone could drink water. It was another few minutes before he spoke again. "So. As I said, I know you all are busy with the work of the Resistance, and as such I will dispense with the usual pleasantries and cut straight to the chase. When we were still on Arcturus, I asked General Organa-Solo to join forces with me. We have a common objective in defeating the First Order. She told me that because the Resistance is not a dictatorship, this proposition would have to be made to the rest of you to decide. This is my proposition. I am restarting the Separatists, as the Commonwealth of Independent Systems. The change in the name from Confederacy to Commonwealth is deliberate, for things will be quite different this time. Starting with, I am not working for anybody but myself... and the Force. There are no secret meetings with Sidious or someone like him. This war is not a pretend war. It is a real war. I need a military. I am going to be rebuilding CIS from its old member states and hopefully some new ones, and will also be developing a military from brave men and women on these worlds willing to fight for the cause... but it will not happen overnight, and the conflict is here and now. Furthermore, it makes a stronger case for prospective member states to join, if we already have members, and we already have a military. It happens that I know some people in the business of fighting the First Order, and I am looking right at them. If the Resistance becomes officially part of the Commonwealth of Independent Systems, I will use my vast fortune to fund you. Pay raises for soldiers. Upgrades to ships, weaponry and technology on par with the First Order. Battle droids. More Resistance bases. As Regent, I can authorize a Resistance base here on Serenno - we could even have the headquarters here, as Serenno will likely become the capital of the Commonwealth."

"So what's the catch?" one of the Resistance men spoke, a brown-skinned human with long dark hair tied back in a braid hanging to his waist.

Dooku sat back in his chair. "While the Restorers may have brought me and others back for nefarious purposes, I believe the Force still worked with that to give me a second chance... to put me in a situation where I could make things right... clean up the mess I made, so to speak. When I first encountered the First Order, my mind had not been made up about them right away. I thought that perhaps they could be a third option to the endless cycle of Republic versus Empire that the Galaxy has seen for the last twenty five thousand years. When they demonstrated themselves to be Imperialists who want to do everything Vader did, but worse, I quickly let go of that notion and decided I would fight them, because we do not need another round of that. But we also do not need another round of the Republic. I have had problems with the Republic since I was in the Battle of Galidraan and ordered to commit genocide by the Republic. My list of grievances has gotten longer in the decades since that time. I am aware that some of you in this room want to see me executed for my role in the Clone Wars. I actually do not regret the Clone Wars, because I feel that if the Republic had been left unchecked, they would have become something even worse than the Empire. You surely know about the labor camps, and that is one of the least unsavory things I have heard the New Republic is up to. They would have come far sooner, and would be more widespread, if I had not done what I did. That being said, there are specific actions I regret from the Clone Wars, and I believe that assisting you will pay the debt that I owe in that regard, more than my head would - I am no use to you dead, but I can be quite useful to you alive. However, to me, paying that debt also means finishing what I started with bringing about an end to the Republic. The Empire is not an appropriate alternative for the problems the Galaxy faces now, and the Republic had its chance many times over to be the better option and it has failed miserably. It is precisely because of the way the Republic is, that the First Order has gotten as far as it has. So all of that leads up to the 'catch' - you will not just be working to defeat the First Order. We are also going to overthrow the Republic."

"And do what?" Holdo sneered.

"Replace it with something that is neither Republic nor Empire - both two governmental structures designed to fail - but something different. Something better."

"And naturally, you'd want to be head of this government." Holdo spat onto the table. "I see right through you, Count Dooku."

"No, you don't, child," Dooku said, "because I have no intentions of being the head of state of whatever is to follow the Republic. Yes, I will be head of state of the Commonwealth of Independent Systems... but it goes without saying that once we unite the Galaxy, the systems are 'independent' no longer, and thus CIS is no longer needed... and at that point, I will be stepping back. I am only taking this job to get things where they need to go, and then I am retiring. I am old. I am not simply an old man, but I am an old man who has only just begun to live..." Dooku took Severin's hand, and Sev squeezed it, smiling at him adoringly. "...and I cannot do that trying to manage the affairs of the entire Galaxy."

Then Dooku let go of Sev's hand, and gestured to Leia, who was sitting on the other side of him, next to Dennis, and to Malak, who was sitting on the other side of Sev. "Directly below me in the chain of command, I am proposing Darth Malak as the Supreme Commander of our armed forces - he was the second-in-command of the First Order military until recently - and General Leia Organa-Solo as Commander-General. The two of them can work out an acceptable system of government when we are closer to the goal of installing that government."

"Darth Malak, of the Sith Empire four thousand years ago?" Holdo snorted.

"Yeah." Malak glared at her. "I wasn't just second-in-command of the First Order military, I was best friends with the man, Kylo Ren, himself. I know a lot about him, his psychology, what he's likely to do and not do in our war. You need me on board. If you're going to hold my ancient past against me - well, it's what Dooku said. There are things I don't regret, and things I do. I have a debt to pay, also." And especially to Darth Revan himself. Malak cracked his knuckles.

And then Holdo said, "You were First Order. How can we trust you? How do we know that this isn't a trap and you're not secretly working for the First Order?"

Dooku had been anticipating his question. He snapped his fingers, and on command, the lightsabers of Sev, Dennis, Malak, Reine, Obi-Wan, and Dooku himself ignited and flew towards the first row of the Resistance Council, hovering in the air just above their hearts.

"You would already be dead right now if that were the case," Dooku said. "We could score a major victory for the First Order by killing its Resistance Council, which would massively disrupt operations for enough time for the First Order to gain even more of a foothold in the Outer Rim."

The group called their lightsabers back, then, and Dooku watched with a smug smile as Holdo breathed a little sigh of relief. It had taken him a considerable amount of restraint to not nick her with his lightsaber.

"There's another reason to trust that the ex-First Order officers here are well and truly done with the First Order," Leia said. She stood up, and put her hands on Dennis's shoulders. "This young man is Dennis Yusanis, who served the First Order as a Colonel. He was, in fact, one of their engineers, and there is a lot he could tell you about the weapons and technology the First Order have been working to develop. He is also my lover."

A few of the Resistance Council gasped. Poe couldn't hide the amusement on his face - he'd suspected Leia was kind of wild.

Holdo looked annoyed now. "Feigning a relationship to gain political confidences is one of the oldest tricks in the book."

"Then I guess we'll have to prove it's legit, won't we, honey?" With that, Leia leaned in and gave Dennis a deep, hungry kiss.

It didn't stop there. After they had been kissing for a minute, Leia ripped Dennis's shirt off - the sound of tearing fabric echoed in the banquet hall. Dennis growled as he kissed Leia back, a kiss so intense it was like his mouth was fucking her mouth... and he tore the dress off of her, exposing a dark blue satin bra and a matching thong. Dennis kissed down Leia's neck as she moaned, and he pulled down one cup of her bra, taking a few slow, loving licks of her nipple before lapping it faster and then sucking it into his mouth, hard. "Mmmmmmm...."

Holdo gasped. She didn't have any words for the sight she was seeing. Dooku was torn between feeling a bit scandalized that such a display was happening... and smug at the Vice Admiral's consternation.

Leia ripped Dennis's pants off, and then Dennis pushed everything off his side of the table onto the floor, picked Leia up, and put her on the table. She undid her bra, and Dennis climbed onto the table and crawled towards her with another growl, and everyone watched as Dennis leaned in and took the waistband of Leia's panties between his teeth, pulling them down, using his teeth to pull them off one leg, then the other. Leia ripped off Dennis's underwear, exposing his erection, and then she shoved him onto his back and straddled him. Dennis gripped Leia's hips, and groaned as Leia eased herself onto his cock - she was already dripping wet for him. She began to ride, then, breasts bouncing, running her hands through Dennis's chest hair, playing with his nipples, as he cupped her ass and rocked his hips, thrusting into her fast and hard. The wet suctioning sound of their fuck echoed obscenely.

Holdo got up from the table she was sitting at, and walked out of the banquet hall, followed by the other Resistance officers save Poe. Dooku got up to follow them out, and ran ahead of them, blocking their way to the door.

"We will vote on it and have an answer for you in twenty-four hours," said the brown-skinned man with the long dark braid.

Holdo folded her arms. "What if we refuse your offer, Count Dooku?"

Before Dooku could respond, Leia's voice cried "Dennis! Oh, Dennis! Fuck me, Dennis, fuck me, fuck me, fuck me, YES..."

"Ohh, Leia, baby," Dennis groaned in response. "Oh, fuck yeah..."

Dooku facepalmed - the part of him that was Kreia was cringing at the Exiles like a parent usually cringes at the sex life of their child - and then he took a moment before he replied. "Refusal is certainly your right. However - while I am making this offer to you, it is an offer of convenience. I need a military before I make my case to the rest of the Galaxy, but I could always hire Mando mercenaries for that job. I wanted to go to you first because we have the common goal of wanting the First Order defeated. But one way or another, I will have the first layer of my military, and that can either be you, or you'll be in my way and I will be fighting you along with everybody else, and I do not intend to lose any of the fights I am in. Quite frankly I think you would be stupid not to mention suicidal to not vote in favor of my offer. You've been willing to defy the Republic thus far to do what needed to be done, and what they would not do. You would be better served going all in."

"UNNNNNNNNNGGG, I love your pussy," Dennis growled from the banquet hall.

"Oh, Dennis, fuck me... fuck me... give me that hot fucking cock..."

The braided man gave a little cough - Holdo's bitchface could peel the walls - and he said, "Thank you for your time, Count."

Dooku nodded. "On your way out, the security I have hired will escort you to the hotel in Carannia where I've reserved your rooms, and keep watch over you until you leave tomorrow. I do not anticipate any problems - we made sure to First Order-proof Serenno before my arrival - but just the same, it's better you have the extra security and not need it, than need it and not have it." He gestured back down the hall. "To my understanding Major Dameron has leave for the next two weeks and will be staying with his partner."

As if on cue, Finn's voice traveled from the banquet hall. "Poe! Oh, Poe, fuck! Guhhhh!"

The Resistance officers left, and Dooku saw Yoda leaving the banquet hall. "I... er." Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose. "Tea?"

Yoda snorted. "Going to find Chewie, I am. Ride him, I will."

Dooku facepalmed again. He strolled past Yoda, back into the banquet hall, which had devolved into a full-scale orgy. Leia was still riding Dennis on the table. Severin was on his knees with his brother Malak's cock in his mouth, as Reine was on a table, her legs propped on Malak's shoulders, with Malak's face buried in Reine's cunt. Finn was riding Poe on another table. Qui-Gon had Obi-Wan bent over yet another table, fucking him furiously.

Dooku reached with the Force and grabbed Sev, and once Sev was Force pulled into Dooku's arms, his back against Dooku's chest, he tilted his face to grin at him. "Hey, honey, what's up?"

"You naughty boy." Dooku growled, and bent Sev over a table, yanking down his trousers. Sev cried out as Dooku's hand slapped his ass, and slapped it again. Dooku kept one hand on the back of Severin's head, clutching a fistful of curls, while the other spanked him and spanked him, making Sev whimper and shiver at each crack against his flesh, the sweet sting going into his spine and out to his cock. "You depraved, debauched little boy." Dooku's hard-on tented through his trousers, and Dooku teased Sev by pushing it against his ass.

"Oh, please, Master," Sev moaned.

"You wanted me to come in and find you being such a bad boy, didn't you?"

"Yes, milord."

Dooku slapped Sev's ass hard. "You were hoping I would punish you."

"Ohhh, yesssss..." Sev shuddered, and Dooku slapped his ass again.

"You filthy libertine." Dooku spanked Sev again, and again, and again. "Hedonist."

"Please..."

"Please what, brat?"

"Fuck me..."

Dooku spanked Sev even harder, and then let him have it, giving Sev a round of fast, hard spankings, until he felt Sev climaxing, in their Force bond. It was so delicious that Dooku almost came too... but instead his cock just twinged at the sight of Sev's red ass, and the thought of having his way with that beautiful tight ass, as they were watched by others in their own acts of primal, animal passion.

Dooku grabbed Sev by the hair, yanking him to his feet, and then he did what Dennis and Leia had done to each other, and what he and Sev had done in the smaller family dining room the night of their arrival on Serenno - he ripped Sev's clothes off, right down to ripping his underwear, exposing the cum-dripping cock. He ran his hands over the exposed flesh, crushing Sev to him in a fierce, violent kiss. Sev threw his arms around Dooku... and then Dooku felt Sev's nails in his back, even through the fabric of his shirt. Before Dooku could protest, Sev tore Dooku's shirt off, and Dooku used the Force to drop his trousers. He pushed Sev onto the table, and climbed on, their eyes locked as Dooku shoved Sev onto his back. Dooku used the Force to grab the small bottle of lube Sev always carried with him now, and poured it into Sev's ass.

Leia was climaxing, her nails raking down Dennis's chest as she howled with pleasure. Dennis grunted and let out a wild cry, giving into his own release. She leaned in to kiss him, and after a few hungry kisses he grabbed her ass and began pounding into her again as she screamed, "Yes, more, more... fuck me, Dennis, don't stop... don't ever fucking stop..."

"Idis!" Sev was white-knuckled, holding onto Dooku for dear life as Dooku fucked him harder than he'd ever fucked before, one of Sev's legs propped on his shoulder, his eyes blazing Sev's soul. The table shook and creaked underneath them, the slap of their flesh rising above the groans and cries of the others fucking in the banquet hall. Sev dug his nails into Dooku again and Dooku bit his neck with a growl.

"Brat," Dooku rasped. "You delicious, filthy little brat."

"Please, Daddy, more, fuck me more, give it to me hard, tear my ass up, Daddy..."

Dooku growled again, taking Sev's nipple between his teeth, making Sev howl and arch, his nails raking his bondmate's back once more.

From across the room Obi and Qui screamed in unison, and Qui collapsed onto Obi's back, holding him, burying his face in Obi's neck as their bodies convulsed together. A moment later Malak and Reine climaxed together, with Reine squirting, and Finn and Poe came too, in an orgasm so powerful they couldn't even make sounds, just look at each other and gasp for breath, panting before they kissed hard.

A few more thrusts, and Sev gave Dooku a wild, desperate look. Dooku took Sev's cock in his hand and jerked it furiously, kissing Sev with a passion that surprised him, even as much as he'd demonstrated passion and hunger since the beginning. Dooku bit Sev's lower lip, before growling, "Now. Come for me."

"Idis... Idis, yes, YES!" Sev made a sound like a cross between a whimper and a grunt, as his cock shot cum over Dooku's hand and stomach. Dooku spent into Sev then, making inhuman guttural noises as Sev's ass clenched his cock and made it pulse harder and harder. Dooku felt like his body was melting, imploding and leaking through his toes. He and Sev kissed, and then Sev laughed, and the musical sound of his bondmate's laughter - the look of joy in those green eyes - delighted Dooku.

"Now that's two orgies you've been in," Sev said.

Dooku laughed a little too. "Dear Force, what have you done to me."

Sev gave Dooku a playful kiss, and then a more sensual kiss that suggested Sev still had an appetite for later. "What won't I do to you."

Dooku kissed him back, and growled. "Mmmmmm..."

_

While the Resistance meeting was happening and Ben had to stay on the estate grounds, he took Owen and Lysa to the villa Sifo-Dyas and Jocasta had, both so the kids could pet the goats, and so Ben could talk to Sifo about the prospect of starting a Je'daii Temple on Serenno.

They had the discussion outside - it was a beautiful fall day, and Carannia was in peak fall foliage, with the deciduous trees blazing red, orange, and gold, accented by the evergreens. The trees and clear blue-and-light-green sky reflected on the lake. It was neither warm nor too cold, just comfortable enough to sit and talk.

Neryt was on her usual afternoon hike through the orchards, and she saw Ben and Sifo sitting outside and waved to them. Sifo-Dyas gestured to her, and Neryt came towards them, feeling apprehensive.

"I understand you're Force-sensitive," Sifo said to her.

Neryt nodded. "I've been midichlorian tested and my count was in the ten thousand range."

Sifo nodded. "Ben and I were discussing building a Force Temple. Would you be interested in joining and receiving formal training?"

Neryt could have jumped, but she kept calm, and nodded again, smiling. "Yes, please."

Sifo poured her some tea, and she joined them for the discussion, where Ben was going over how to apply the things that worked with the ancient Je'daii, into the modern day. Neryt didn't know anything about the Je'daii, but Ben's ideas sounded good, especially having different areas on the campus for different specialties, like a Temple of Healing, a Temple of Martial Arts, a Temple of Science... The kids gravitated to Neryt, and she found herself hugging them as Sifo and Ben talked back and forth.

Jocasta came back - she had been shopping with Irina - and she looked about ready to explode from laughter. "There's my favorite librarian," Sifo said. "What's so funny, honey?"

Jocasta and Irina had stopped at the palace just in time to see the end of the shenanigans that had brought the Resistance meeting to a halt. Dooku and Sev had ripped each other's clothes, so they walked out of the banquet hall naked, and Irina wailed at the sight of her naked brother's ass and hid behind Jocasta, meeping. Jocasta showed this through mental images in the Force, because she was still laughing too hard to make words, and the kids were present.

Irina finally showed up a few minutes later - she'd walked with Jocasta - and she looked mortified. "You poor dear," Jocasta said, but the way she said it suggested she didn't feel all that sorry for her new friend. Irina bitchfaced.

"Here, have tea with us," Sifo said, using the Force to pour Irina some tea.

Ben felt awkward about Neryt's mom being around, so he took that as his cue to get up. "Dennis will probably be home soon, and I should take the kids home. We'll... continue this discussion later, though?"

Sifo nodded. "We're off to a good start with ideas, and I want to hear Dennis's opinion on the Temple."

Neryt got up, and the kids clung to her. "I'll walk back with you," she said.

"OK." Ben ran a hand through his hair.

Ben and Neryt made their way around the lake to Dennis and Ben's villa, which was a little smaller than the others, but still charming and cozy. The kids had their own room - there was space for them to each have their own bedroom when they got older, but they preferred to share a room for now - and Dennis and Ben had set up a little playground, with a swing set, slide, and climbing bars. As they walked to the villa, the sky darkened, and Ben caught a whiff of petrichor. "It's gonna rain later," he said. "I like rain."

I like rain? Ben facepalmed before he could stop himself. Totally smooth.

Neryt smiled. "So, how are you liking Serenno so far, besides liking rain?"

Ben nodded. "I like it here. It's scenic and peaceful. Well, you know, as peaceful as it's going to get with us going to war and all." Ben sighed.

"Yeah. Can't really avoid it, though. We can either bring it to them or they can bring it to us."

Ben nodded. He felt like his head was going to fall off from all the nodding.

Dennis rode his speeder bike down to the orchards, and chose that moment to arrive. "Hey hey," he said. He climbed off the bike and Owen and Lysa ran to him, yelling "Daddy, Daddy!"

"They're so cute," Neryt said.

"Yeah, Dennis makes nice kids."

Dennis came over to them, with Owen and Lysa clinging to his hips. "I brought some food leftover from the Resistance meeting so we don't have to cook."

"Cool," Ben said.

Just then, Neryt's holophone went off, and she saw a text message from Irina: Change of plans for dinner. I'm going to be out. Isha is going to Han and Leia's. There's leftovers from the meeting up at the palace. Will see you later.

"Was there a lot of leftovers?" Neryt asked.

"Yeah," Dennis said, "but I brought a lot home, too." He was carrying a large shopping bag and there were two by his speeder bike. "Why?"

"Oh. Mom's going out, my brother's going out, and I guess my uncles have 'plans', so I'm kind of on my own tonight."

"No you're not. You can eat with us."

Ben shot Dennis a look - it wasn't that he didn't want Neryt to join them, but his awkward crush feelings intensified - and Dennis just smiled at him.

"Are you sure it-?"

Dennis began shuffling Neryt towards the house. "We insist."

"Yay, pretty lady!" Owen hugged Neryt, and so did Lysa.

Then Lysa reached up to tug on a lekku. "I like your tails," she said.

"Thank you." Neryt smiled and tousled Lysa's hair.

"I used to have tails," Lysa said.

"Oh, did you?" Neryt thought Lysa was joking. "What happened, did they walk away?"

"No." Lysa frowned. "I was a girl named Ahsoka. I looked like you. I had a glowstick like Dad and Daddy. I fought one of the bad people."

Ben and Dennis's jaws dropped, and so did Neryt's.

So she's Vaylin and Ahsoka Tano. Okie-dokie. Dennis felt like he could scream.[1]

Irina's change of plans had come shortly after Ben and Neryt left Jocasta and Sifo's. "Do you want to stay for dinner?" Sifo asked. "I'm guessing you probably want to avoid your brother for the next few hours."

Irina nodded, and Jocasta didn't conceal her amusement, making Irina elbow her in the ribs. Then Irina said, "But I don't want to impose. I..."

They saw Mace Windu coming out of the villa he shared with his granddaughter and grandson-in-law. Irina did a double-take - Mace was wearing civilian clothes, not those horrid Jedi robes. He looked sharp in a dark plum button-down shirt and black trousers, form-fitting without being too tight, showing off his muscular physique.

"Hey, Mace!" Sifo said. "What are you up to?"

Mace walked over to them. "I was going to go into the city and pick up some groceries. Why?"

"Do you want to join us for dinner?"

"Well, Malak and Reine are going out with Finn and Poe and I was invited, but I was looking forward to being able to cook for myself tonight and have some quiet time, so unless you want shrimp gumbo..."

Sifo made a face before he could stop himself. Mace chuckled.

Then Irina said, "I've never had it, but I love shrimp. If you make dinner, I'll make dessert, yes?"

"All right." Mace smiled. "Might as well get to know you, since I'm gonna be here awhile, right?"

"And I can tell you embarrassing stories about Dooku."

Mace laughed, and Irina laughed too.

Sifo and Jocasta traded secret smiles, and Sifo said, "OK, well you two have fun."

"I don't really do fun," Mace told him.

Sifo folded his arms. "Yeah, I know, and that needs to change." In more ways than one.

"I'll take you into the city for the groceries," Irina said, and Mace followed her out. Irina felt a little flustered, and downright giddy. Why am I acting this way? It's like I'm a teenager on a date. And that's not at all what this is.

Mace found himself watching Irina's ass, and his inner critic protested, and he let it babble for a moment before smacking it into silence. I can look, can't I?

"So what are we betting that Mace Windu gets laid tonight?" Sifo asked Jocasta on their way inside their villa.

Chapter Text

Mace and Irina took a speeder car into Carannia, to the market where Irina did most of her food shopping. Servants could do the food shopping, and sometimes they did, but it was something Irina needed to do once in awhile because it helped her to feel like a normal person - she hadn't had servants when she lived on Mandalore with her late husband, and after four years on Serenno she still felt like she was re-acclimating to the aristocracy.

Carannia was a picturesque city - every street was lined with trees and floral shrubbery, fountains were commonplace, and the buildings were elegant, in warm earth tones brought out by the fall foliage. The sky was darkening with rain clouds, but they had time to get the shopping done before the storm came. Irina saw Mace watching the view from the window of the speeder, and she asked politely, "How are you liking Serenno?"

Mace looked at her and gave a small smile. "It's lovely here." He cleared his throat. "I was from a very low-tech, rural planet, from what I was told - I was taken by the Jedi so young I don't remember it. So I spent my entire life on Coruscant, with occasional trips off-world for one mission or another. Coruscant is... real urban. People packed in on top of each other. The Jedi Order had Temple Gardens, but outside the Temple campus, forget it. I lived the last four years on Arcturus, which wasn't quite as urban, some parks, some nature preserves like a redwood forest, beaches... but it's not like this."

"When the Ancestors colonized Serenno, they came from Alderaan which was already experiencing overpopulation problems in the cities. They were very judicious about not overdeveloping, to the point where when new properties are being proposed, the Singer has to come out and ask the land spirits for permission to build on that piece of land... and at least a few times, they've refused."

Mace raised his eyebrow. "Really."

Irina nodded. "We have a concept of the Force here... the Kalae, we call it. The Ancestors and the land are seen as part of the Kalae."

"That explains why Dooku came back here when he left the Jedi Order. The Living Force is very strong here."

"Yes, it is." When Mace raised an eyebrow, Irina explained, "I'm not as Force-sensitive as he is - my midichlorian count is only 5k - but it's enough where I can feel things... and I can do a few things." Irina demonstrated by using telekinesis to retrieve a bottle of water, which she sipped from.

"Well, it runs in families." Mace grinned. "Just ask my grandchildren."

Irina nodded. "Neryt - our other brother's daughter, who I raised as mine - is strongly Force-sensitive. Enough that I worry about her. She needs a teacher."

"I'm still teaching my grandson," Mace said, "but we've got no shortage of Force users around who don't have apprentices. She'll find someone."

"I hope so. It's rather too bad she can't join an Order and go on missions like you once did. She's a bit hyperactive and she enjoys thrill-seeking." Irina frowned. "She's into swoop racing."

Mace laughed. "I can't see anyone from House Dooku riding a swoop."

"Idis did, when he was a young man. From what I understand he got in no small amount of trouble with the Jedi Council because of it."

"Oh, man. I was just a little kid when all of that was going on."

Irina nodded. "I'm fifteen years younger than Idis. We didn't even meet for the first time until I was fourteen and he was twenty-nine. He'd calmed down a bit by then, though he had his hands full with Qui-Gon."

Mace snorted. "He still does."

Now Irina laughed too. "He's adopting Qui-Gon as his son."

"I know." Mace smiled. "It's nice to see that stuffy old bastard admitting he has a heart. That young man of his has been good for him."

"Who is your nephew, from what I understand."

Mace nodded. "Senator Raskta Yusanis and I were never formally married - the Jedi Order would have found out about it, and it was hard enough keeping things a secret - but we considered ourselves as good as married. We were married in the way that counts." And then he frowned, sadness in his eyes.

Irina gave a small, wistful sigh, remembering Aran Fett. She still wore her wedding ring - it was Serennian custom to wear the ring on the ring finger of the right hand. A simple white gold band. Mandalorians didn't wear wedding rings, usually, but Aran had made the concession for her. She fiddled with the ring without thinking about it, and Mace noticed.

"How long has it been?" Mace asked.

"Well," Irina said, "Aran died during the Clone Wars - he was fighting for the Separatists. When I was resurrected, I was told he could not be because he didn't have enough midichlorians. So it was two years before my death, and four years since my resurrection." She pursed her lips. "It feels like it's been longer than that, and yet I still remember moments with him like it was yesterday."

"I know that feeling, Contessa."

"Please, call me Irina."

"Irina." Mace smiled. "That's a beautiful name. It suits you."

Irina smiled back. "It means 'Pearl' in Serennian. It's one of the most common names for Serenni girls, or it was in my generation."

Mace gave a small frown. "I have no idea what 'Mace Windu' means. I've never even been to my homeworld."

"Well, in Serennian, maese means 'sword' and windu means 'stone'."

"Does it really."

Irina nodded.

"Huh." Mace thought of the Forcesaber when he was Xesh - realizing he'd been responsible for introducing the Je'daii to the concept of lightsabers, when previously they used Force-imbued blades forged from steel - and he wondered if it wasn't a coincidence that he'd been brought to Serenno, and some destiny was awaiting him here.

He began to think of that ancient lifetime again, of the Force Hound turned Je'daii Ranger, coming from the Dark Side to grey, helping to lead the fight against the Rakata, his former Masters... the Rakata who had inspired Revan... and perhaps the Infinite Empire of the Rakata was inspiring the First Order, now, even more than Vader's was. Pieces were all converging, but for what, he did not know.

_

When they were back at the villa Mace shared with Reine and Malak, he set about cooking right away. Irina offered to help, but Mace wanted to handle all of the steps himself - while the gumbo cooked, she could make dessert. She was making something called "chocolate salty balls", a confection of chocolate, caramel, and sea salt - Mace liked the combination of sweet and salty, and was pleasantly surprised that he'd met someone else who did.

Irina, herself, was a combination of sweet and salty. As Mace worked on putting the gumbo together, chopping vegetables, preparing the shrimp, preparing the stock and the rice and the seasonings, he and Irina talked about their respective backgrounds - his as a Jedi Knight, and her own colorful past. She was of the last generation to be put in arranged marriages, where she was betrothed to Count Malvern, who didn't excite her, and as a bodyguard she had the Mandalorian mercenary Aran Fett, who did. He taught her how to defend herself, and began breaking her out of her stuffy routines, such as taking her out on midnight rides on his speeder, taking her to an actual bar to go drinking which got them in a barfight. She fell in love with him, and the feeling was mutual, and the night before she was supposed to marry Count Malvern, she and Aran Fett eloped, taking off to Mandalore. Irina was subsequently cut out of her inheritance and had to earn a living, so she did it by joining the Fett family business - bounty hunting, with occasional mercenary and assassin jobs. Clan Fett had standards, and there were jobs she and her husband wouldn't take, but Irina had scored an impressive body count by the time her brother Idis returned to Serenno and re-instated her in the family fortune.

Irina had also been a Senator for a few brief years in her early twenties, before she'd eloped with Aran Fett, and she'd seen firsthand the corruptions in the Republic Senate - it was then she found a friend and confidante in her brother Idis, which was turned around in their later years when he went to her for emotional support after Qui-Gon's death, and during the Clone Wars.

Mace was already taken with Irina - her class and style, elegance of manners and dress - but he found himself feeling a sharp pang as she filled in the details of what made her into the woman she was. He had loved a Senator, and he had loved her for being a fierce, formidable warrior woman - one who had fallen in love with him as her bodyguard. The similarities between Irina and Raskta were so obvious as to be painful. He remembered the memorial service that had been done for Raskta before they left Arcturus, getting to meet with her Force ghost, and Raskta herself telling him it was time for him to move on... and here was someone who was everything he liked and admired about Raskta but also her own person, someone who could be a second great love of his life if he let her in.

Mace felt the urge to call this evening off before it even started, but it was raining and Irina had told her kids to make other plans for dinner and he didn't want to be rude by suddenly changing his mind, especially when he knew he'd be hearing about it from Dooku later.

Everything was boiling in the pot now, and Mace brought Irina to the stove. "Taste this," Mace said, dipping a large spoon into the pot, "and see if it needs anything." He pulled out the spoon, which had a bit of broth in it. Irina took the spoon and put it in her mouth, and as her lips wrapped around it Mace's mind went immediately in the gutter...

...and then he had a flashback.

"You meet me with blades drawn and expect me to believe you mean no harm? Liars. You are the enemy! I will fight and die as a warrior! You will not feast on my bones!"

Xesh's ship has crashed on the strange planet - Tython - and he is met by three Je'daii. He fights them and they fight back, and then a saarl threatens to eat all of them and they must fight together. Xesh is then brought to Mahara Kesh and encounters something called a "healer" for the first time.

Xesh is still wary of these people and reluctant to cooperate with them, and he is exiled to the moon of Bogan, because Ketu, their leader, feels he is too much on the Dark Side of the Force and it is triggering Force storms on Tython. Xesh meets fellow prisoner, madman Daegen Lok, who has had visions of Xesh's Forcesaber, and the two escape to build Forcesabers.

They are pursued, and one of the hunters is Shae Koda, a feisty woman with fiery red hair who was one of the three to greet Xesh with sword drawn when he crashed on the surface. They duel each other once more, and after Koda slices Xesh in the side, she is grabbed by the tentacles of a dianoga. He feels compelled to save her for reasons he does not understand, and squeezes the beast's hearts to death until it releases her. Then he takes her prisoner, bringing her to Lok. Lok then puts her under mental control with the Force.

Koda finds a way to break out of his control when she hears fellow Je'daii Tasha Ryo scream in pain, and she attacks Lok. Lok orders Xesh to kill Koda, and Koda tells him to not serve Lok as a slave. The words affect him, and Xesh turns on Daegen Lok, subduing him so the Je'daii can take him prisoner.

Over the coming days, Xesh helps the Je'daii restore his memories so they have information about the Rakata that they can use to fight them. And then Shae Koda finds him and says, "Thank you for saving my life."

"It was the right thing to do." A pause. "Your light cannot be extinguished from this Galaxy."

She kisses him.

"Mace, are you all right?" Irina's voice cut into his thoughts.

Mace blinked, and nodded. "Sorry, I spaced out for a minute. Does it need anything?"

"No, it's perfect."

Mace sat down at the table as Irina worked on making dessert. Malak and Reine kept wine in the house, as their short time on Serenno had given them an appreciation for it, and Mace decided he needed to calm his nerves, so he went to the liquor cabinet. "Which do you recommend?" he asked Irina.

She picked one, and he opened it, and she sniffed the cork. He poured them each a glass. He'd never been much of a drinker - Jedi eschewed substances, as a rule - so after the first glass he felt himself relax considerably.

There was a loud clap of thunder, which startled Irina enough that she dropped her spoon on the floor. She and Mace both reached to pick it up. "Some brave mercenary I am," she said, "I still startle at storms like I did when I was a little girl."

Mace handed her the spoon, and their fingers brushed, and their eyes met. "We can't be brave all the time," Mace told her.

"That's easy for you to say, being a Jedi." Irina used a new, clean spoon to continue her work. "You are conditioned to not feel emotions, especially not fear."

"Well, people are people, and even with the Jedi conditioning, sentient nature is still what it is. I defied the Jedi Code enough to feel love... I definitely understand fear."

"You don't look like you'd be afraid of anything."

Mace found that the wine had removed enough of his inhibition that the words came out before he could stop himself. "To be honest, I almost asked you to leave because I was afraid of being alone here with you."

"Why?" Irina's lips quirked. "Just because I was a professional killer and my brother is a Sith Lord doesn't mean you have anything to fear from me in that regard."

"It's not that." Mace cleared his throat. "I... think I could like you."

Irina had developed a respect and fondness for this man over the last couple of hours, and she found him quite handsome, enough that being around him made her feel giddy, like a teenager with a stupid crush. The way his gaze focused on her now made her feel weak in the knees. In typical House Dooku fashion, she replied with, "I see."

Mace facepalmed. "Dammit. I put my foot in my mouth. I'm sorry."

Irina walked over to him, and grabbed the hand on his forehead, and put it in hers. "Don't be sorry. Never be sorry for honest words."

Dinner and dessert were both ready a short time later, and they ate in companionable silence. They also had a second glass of wine. Irina complimented the gumbo and asked for the recipe, and Mace said, "I can give it to you now."

Irina took out a small holotablet, and turned it on. She meant to access the text program, but accidentally activated the photo gallery, and a holopicture of her and Aran immediately materialized... which was rather the last thing Irina wanted to see right now. Mace saw the look of anguish on her face, and then there was another loud clap of thunder and Irina dropped the tablet. Mace instinctively got on his knees to pick it up, and when he handed it to her, he saw she was crying, a little.

"Are you all right, Irina?"

Irina clutched the pearls around her neck, and nodded. She met Mace's eyes. "It's... a sign." She took a deep breath. "He's letting me know it's OK to move on." She took Mace's hands in hers. "I'd like to see where this goes."

Mace meant to stand up, but before he could, Irina took his face in her hands and leaned in to kiss him. His mouth yielded to hers, their tongues met, and the swirling play of their tongues unlocked the desire that they'd kept in check until now.

After a few minutes of intense kissing, Irina said, "Our food will get cold," so they reluctantly pulled apart. Mace pulled his chair closer to Irina's and they finished dinner, and then Irina brought over the dessert. She pushed a chocolate salty ball into Mace's mouth, and he said a moment later, "These are excellent."

"I can give you the recipe if you like, or you know... I can just make it for you again."

"I'd like that." Mace smiled. "I can make the gumbo for you again too."

"Please do." Irina smiled back at him.

When they were finished, the cleaning droids worked on the dishes - a luxury Mace hadn't had on Arcturus, since housekeeping droids tended to be expensive - and the two brought the remainder of the bottle of wine into the living room. The storm continued to rage outside, and Mace watched it out the window. After a few minutes he said, "Sit out on the patio with me. The roof will shelter us so we won't get too drenched, and it might help you get over your fear of the thunder, a little bit."

So Irina accompanied him out to the patio, and they sat on the porch swing together, sipping wine, watching the pouring rain in the steel-blue-and-silver sky, accompanied by flashes of white lightning from the distance. They sat there for awhile before Irina finally conceded, "I suppose this isn't too bad."

"Storms have their own beauty," Mace observed.

"Yes, I suppose they do."

"Just like stormy people." Mace cupped Irina's chin in his hand, and tilted her face to look at him.

They kissed again, and again. Irina accidentally spilled wine onto Mace's shirt, and he swore, and she said, "Oh dear."

"I'm going to have to take this off right away and clean it so it doesn't stain."

"I can help you."

Irina followed him back inside, and watched hungrily as Mace began to unbutton his shirt. Before he could undo it all the way, her hands reached, and she found herself undoing the last few buttons. Their mouths met again, and Irina growled, "I'll buy you a new damn shirt to replace this one," before kissing him as hard as she'd ever kissed anyone.

They found themselves stumbling towards the couch, making out like horny teenagers, kissing each other's mouths, kissing each other's necks. Irina's hands roamed over Mace's bare chest and arms, feeling the muscles and the strength in his pecs, biceps, and triceps. Her fingers lingered on his nipples and he responded to that by nibbling her neck, which made her gasp. Irina's little black dress zipped in the back, and it wasn't long before Mace was unzipping it, his finger trailing down the wake of exposed flesh, making her shiver.

Irina shucked her dress onto the living room floor, standing before him in a black lace-trimmed satin bra and panties. She had an hourglass figure, breasts that were full but not too large, and seemed to defy gravity for her age, and a flat stomach. Mace drank in the sight of her, wondering what she would look like completely naked. She got back on the couch, and he unhooked her bra. He nuzzled the space between her breasts almost reverently before suckling a nipple into her mouth, making her clutch his head and gasp. He feasted on each nipple, worshiping it with his lips and tongue, bringing it to an aching peak that only the attention of his mouth and fingers could soothe. Mace brought Irina's hand to the bulge straining his trousers, letting her know without words he was hard for her, he was ready for her.

When Irina's nipples were almost sore from his ravishing, Irina pulled his head up to kiss him again, and then she got down on her knees before him. She undid his trousers and reached to pull out the long, thick dark cock, and greedily took it into her mouth, her eyes locked on his the whole time. He tasted sweet, and smelled intoxicating. She swallowed down to the hilt, making Mace gasp with shock and pleasure. She herself was a little shocked - she'd been out of practice since before Aran died, but apparently she'd never forgotten the skill.

Irina sucked him slow and hard, revelling in the stoic Jedi Master losing his composure more and more with every gasp, groan, grunt, and sigh of pleasure. She liked feeling him in her mouth - sucking cock had always been strangely soothing to her - and it was arousing to worship his beautiful cock like this, watch him lose control to her. When her jaw got a little tired, she pulled his cock out of her mouth and began licking it, bathing it with her tongue, which made Mace groan even louder. She gave him a wicked grin as she moved forward to take his cock between her breasts, and he growled as he watched his cock push up and down, her breasts gripping it, massaging it. Irina tilted her face down to teasingly lick the head, now leaking precum. Mace moaned, and Irina responded by taking his cock in her hand and rubbing the leaking slit against her nipple, making a show of his precum slicking the nub. "Ohhh, fuck," Mace groaned.

Irina resumed licking the head, and then took the head into her mouth, kissing it, swirling her tongue vigorously. Mace cried out. She cupped his balls, rubbing them gently, as she eased the shaft back down her throat. After a couple of minutes of Irina sucking his cock again, Mace looked at the time.

"Honey," he said - the endearment just slipped out - "Reine and Malak are gonna be home any minute now... so we better take this to my room." He smiled. "Besides... I want to taste you."

Irina shuddered with anticipation. She got up, picked her dress up off the floor and bra off the couch, and then Mace marched her to his bedroom, kissing her passionately with each step.

Mace's bedroom was done in a few complementary shades of purple, and Irina found herself admiring his taste as they walked into the bedroom. Mace lit meditation candles around the room, and they removed the rest of their clothing and climbed on the bed together - just big enough for two people. They kissed again and again, and then Mace kissed his way down her neck, back down to her breasts.

"You're beautiful," Mace husked before taking a nipple into his mouth.

"So are you." Irina ran her hands down the back of his neck, over his shoulders and the definition in his arms. "One good thing I can say about the Jedi - they train their men."

"I'm in decent shape." Mace smiled.

"It's quite more than decent, dear."

Mace suckled the other nipple, making Irina moan, and then his fingers found their way between her legs. She was already soaking wet for him, cream coating her inner thighs. Mace's fingers played, teasing her labia and then caressing her clit in slow circles, before he dipped them inside her, finding the G-spot. "Ahhh, ahhhhhh," Irina cried, trembling at his touch.

Mace growled, and kissed down her stomach, down the seam of her crotch, lapping the juices from her thigh, before he dove in, fingers continuing to rub her G-spot as his tongue stroked her cleft, kissing her pussy lips, lapping and sucking her clit. "You taste so good," he husked before dipping his tongue inside her. "Mmmmmmm."

"Oh, Mace, ohhhh, yes, more..."

"Mmmmmhmmmmm." I could do this to you all night.

It had been a long time since Irina had been touched there, or touched herself, and within a few minutes, she had her first climax, with Mace's fingers inside her as he kissed her clit, lips and tongue stroking it to frenzy. Mace made a show of sucking her juices off his fingers, before he pressed his face into her to go again. "So good." He groaned as his tongue attacked her sensitive clit, rubbing harder and faster than before. "Such a beautiful pussy."

"Fuck..."

Making the Contessa Dooku say "fuck" made Mace feel like he'd accomplished something big. He couldn't help smiling into her, before he licked even faster, showing off what his tongue could do.

"Mace..." Irina clutched at his head. "Mace, I'm going to come again, and you haven't come yet."

"So?"

"I want to taste you too."

Mace let out an exaggerated sigh, but he was grinning. He came up and they kissed - the naughtiness of tasting her own juices on him fueled Irina's fire all the more - and then they positioned themselves, laying on their sides, heads between each other's legs. Irina took Mace's cock into her mouth and Mace resumed eating her pussy, and at the moment of truth they took each other's hands, squeezing as they came together. Irina wasn't as Force-sensitive as Mace, but there was enough for a Force bond, and they felt it weave through and around them, linking them in emotions and sensation.

"I could fall in love with you," Irina told him when their orgasm subsided.

"I think I'm already there."

Irina's response was to pull Mace up into her arms, and kiss him with all the passion and fury she'd forgotten for years as a widow. "I hope you're still hungry," she rasped.

"Mmmmmmm." Mace nipped her lower lip. "But I want something more."

"So do I." Irina lay on her back, parting her legs. She reached for Mace's cock, and guided it to her opening. But instead of penetrating her, Mace teased her for a few minutes, rubbing the head of his cock against her clit, making Irina writhe and howl with delicious frustration. "Dammit, Mace..."

"Such a pretty pussy." He looked down and saw her cream slicking his cock and almost lost control again.

"This pussy needs your cock. Now."

Mace chuckled. "Does your brother know you talk like that?"

"FUCK. ME. NOW."

Mace laughed again, but then he did as she commanded, pushing into her. She was tight, but also very, very wet... and very, very hot. Mace groaned as he felt her wrap around him, like a silken vise.

He went slow, for her sake - he knew it had been a long time. The slow thrusts just served to torment them both, building the pleasure to fever pitch, making them crazy with need. Irina's nails dug into Mace's back and ass, and he grunted at the sweet sting, the show of animal passion from this refined, graceful woman. He leaned in to kiss her again, and she threw her arms around him, and then her legs around him, holding him with all of her. And it had been ages since the last time Mace was held... especially like this. It took his breath away, and brought a burn of tears to his eyes. Irina noticed, and he saw the tears reflected in her own.

Mace caressed her cheek, and pressed his forehead to hers, his nose nuzzling hers. He kissed her softly, and her fingers stroked his spine, making him shiver. "This is so right," Mace rasped.

"Yes," Irina whispered. "Yes..."

"Do you remember?"

At first Irina was confused, and then she remembered a fragment of an ancient memory, when he was called Xesh and she was called Shae, two Force users, bondmates at a time when bondmates were encouraged by the Order they belonged to.

And that made the tears flow. "Oh, yes..."

He kissed her tears, kissed her. "The Force... gave us... this..."

Irina kissed him back hard. "Make love to me." She stroked his face. "Take me. Fuck me. Make me yours."

Mace took a deep breath, and then he began to plow into her, and Irina squealed, "Yes, yesyesyes YES," arching to him, rocking her hips against his. His fingers reached between her legs to work her clit in time with his thrusts, and his mouth grazed hers, kissed her neck, kissed her breasts, back up to her mouth, again and again. Losing himself in her body... in her. She loved it, trembling, quivering, as her orgasm built, promising to be even more shattering than the ones before. He pleased her body like he was familiar with it, even though it was their first time together. It wouldn't be their last.

As they kissed hungrily, Irina rolled and pushed Mace onto his back, and began riding him. "That's it, honey," Mace encouraged her, enjoying the sight of her breasts bouncing in time with her rolling hips. "Ohhhh, sweetheart. Ride that cock, love."

"Fuck, your cock is so good," Irina panted. His fingers rubbed her clit harder, as his free hand played with her nipples... and then reached to slap her ass, which made Irina hold him down and bounce on him wildly, letting out a primal scream.

The bed rocked against the wall and creaked underneath him, and the sound of Irina's wetness was as loud as her cries. Mace's voice joined hers, the two of them moaning and yelling as they fucked harder and faster, wanting to keep the delicious excitement going as long as they could, that wild, free feeling of letting go and giving into their fuck... but they needed to come. And at last, they could hold back no longer. Irina grabbed Mace's hand as he rubbed her furiously, and within a moment she was shuddering from head to toe. "Mace... Mace... MACE, YES! YES!" Irina threw her head back, and Mace felt her cunt clench his cock, quiver around it. It squeezed enough to set off his own orgasm, and he called out "Irina... oh, fuck!" as he let go, spending deep inside her.

Irina collapsed on top of him, panting, and they held each other as their orgasm washed over and through them, rolling in waves like the tide. They could hear the rain and the thunder but it seemed far away, as they were lost in bliss... lost in each other.

Finally Irina leaned up to kiss him, gently. "Thank you," she whispered.

"The pleasure was all mine." Mace kissed her back, smiling.

"That was... amazing. Incredible." Irina kissed him again. "I will definitely be returning for a repeat performance."

"I hope so," Mace said. "I could get real used to this."

"So could I." She caressed his face and rubbed his bald head.

Thunder rolled again, and Mace said, "Do you want to sleep here? I don't feel right about making you go back to the palace in the storm, even though it's a short speeder ride."

"All right, though you may have some explaining to do with your granddaughter and grandson-in-law tomorrow morning."

"They're adults." Mace rolled his eyes. "Besides, I've heard them quite a few times now. They're usually good about putting up a Force sound barrier... but sometimes they forget."

"YOU DEFINITELY DIDN'T HAVE ONE TONIGHT, GRANDPA," Reine yelled from down the hall, followed by Malak clapping and cheering.

Irina turned pink, and then she busted out laughing - this time her tears were from laughter. Mace laughed with her, and then he kissed Irina and said, "I don't know about you, but I think these young upstarts could use a lesson in manners."

"What did you have in mind?"

Mace took a nipple back into his mouth and Irina moaned, "Oh, Mace," as loud as she could.

They didn't get much sleep that night.

_

Meanwhile, as her mother was having dinner and "dessert" with Mace Windu, Neryt Dooku-Fett ate with Ben, Dennis, and their children. After dinner, the kids wanted to play in the rain, so the three adults accompanied them outside and they all splashed in puddles and got thoroughly drenched. When Ben and Dennis brought the kids inside, Dennis decided the kids' clothes were wet enough that they needed to be changed, and it was time for them to put on pajamas anyway.

"I'm really soaked too," Neryt said. "I should go home and change."

"If you want to stay here for a bit and hang out," Ben told her, "we're about the same height and you could probably fit into one of my T-shirts and pairs of pajama pants. We'll throw your clothes in the dryer while you wait."

"OK," Neryt said.

Neryt went into the 'fresher to change, and when she came out, Ben and Dennis both gawked at her a little - she looked cute in the plain dark grey shirt and blue-and-grey plaid flannel pants, and it was obvious she was going braless.

The kids wanted to play with their plastine building block set, and Neryt felt stupidly excited about it - she hadn't played with this kind of stuff since she was a kid, and sometimes she missed it, so here was a chance to do kid stuff under the guise of being a "responsible adult". The kids were building a castle, guarded by dragons.

"You live in the castle," Owen said to Neryt, referring to the palace that was a short speeder drive away, across the top of the mountain.

Neryt nodded.

"Are you a princess?"

Neryt laughed. "No, I'm a Contessa, which isn't quite the same thing."

"So you're actually a Dooku by blood, then?" Dennis asked. "Sorry if that's rude, I didn't mean to pry."

Neryt nodded. "Daughter of the middle son, by his paramour. I don't actually know my biological parents - my father was murdered when I was a baby, and his lover gave me to his sister to raise, since Uncle Idis was still in the Jedi Order when that happened and couldn't take me in, and she already had experience with kids."

Dennis let out a low whistle. "What is it with all of us and dead parents?"

Neryt cocked her head to one side, curious. "Huh?"

"My parents were murdered when we were six, by Imperialist Sith - my mom was a Jensaarai, and Vader kind of had a problem with the Jensaarai sect, so even after his Empire fell and he was gone, his loyalists still went around finding Jensaarai 'heretics' for extermination. Reine and Finn's parents were murdered, and Finn was given to the First Order as a Stormtrooper, and Kylo Ren just happened to find Reine on the planet she was dropped off, years later, so we suspect First Order foul play. To be honest, I think Valkorion may be responsible for our parents' death too."

"I told you about saying his name," Ben said.

"Yeah, I know."

"I don't even know who that is," Neryt said.

"Long story short, he's a very ancient enemy of ours," Ben told her. "Thousands of years ago. Instead of just reincarnating when he dies, so he's in a different body in a new life and has to put bits and pieces of past life memories together if he's lucky enough to have them, he just transfers his consciousness into a new host body. His current host is Snoke, Supreme Leader of the First Order."

"So wait, you remember stuff from a long time ago?"

Ben nodded. "More than I'd like."

Neryt took a deep breath. "Before you guys came here, I started having these weird dreams. I was a Twi'lek in them, named Mission Vao. I met this guy named Revan. I looked him up on the Holonet and apparently he's really famous."

Ben snorted. "Yeah." He looked at Dennis. Should I tell her?

I don't know if you want to tell her everything, but I don't think telling her you were Revan will hurt. From there you can figure out what else to tell her.

"So, like, I was Revan," Ben said. "One of the Revans."

"...One of the Revans?"

Ben ran a hand through his hair. "When I first showed up, everybody thought I was Kylo Ren from another universe. It turns out I'm actually Kylo's brother, and Snoke stole me when I was a baby and put me in this... fake universe... sim... thing. But Revan and Malak did make a series of alternate universes, and their histories were affected by Revan's alignment and the choices he made with that alignment. Dark Side Revan, and Light Side Revan. Kylo was a Dark Side Revan. I was a Light Side Revan." Then he pursed his lips. "There's also a female Revan, though my path has yet to cross with hers."

"Wow, holy shit." Neryt's jaw dropped. "I think my brain is broken."

"That's just the tip of the iceberg of craziness surrounding all of us." Ben put out his hand. "So, uh, nice to see you again, Mission."

Neryt took his hand and shook it, laughing. Ben laughed a little too.

"Well, I know one cure for brain breakage," Dennis said. "Brain freeze." He rose to his feet. "Who wants ice cream?"

"ICE CREAM!" Lysa yelled, clapping her hands together.

Dennis went to the kitchen to dish out ice cream for everyone, bringing Owen and Lysa theirs first, then bringing dishes to Ben and Neryt, before sitting down with his own dish. It was chocolate caramel, and he added whipped cream and chopped nuts. Neryt smiled into her ice cream - she felt perfectly at home and relaxed here, with a sense of rightness she couldn't explain.

After the ice cream the kids resumed working on their castle and dragons with help from the grownups, and Dennis gave a little bit of coaching with the kids in how to use the Force to move the blocks with their mind, which impressed Neryt.

"Ben and Sifo-Dyas talked about starting a Temple here," Neryt told him.

Dennis nodded. "I want to touch base with them about that sometime soon."

"I'm looking forward to it, whenever it happens," Neryt said. "Though I could use a teacher between now and then."

"Well," Ben said to Dennis, "you helped my mom re-learn how to use the Force and you did a pretty damn good job with her."

"Are you volunteering me?" Dennis raised his eyebrows.

"Oh, that would be great if you did," Neryt said. "To be honest, I'm really nervous about being apprenticed to one of the older, more experienced Jedi or Sith around here. You feel... I don't know... more down to earth? I'd be more comfortable with you as a teacher."

"So I guess I've been volunteered." Dennis stuck his tongue out a little. "I didn't even say yes."

"PLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEASE." Neryt grinned. "I'll make you an uj cake."

"What's that?"

"I grew up on Mandalore and it's the most famous Mandalorian dessert. If you've ever had pecan pie, it's a lot like that, but stickier and more layers. Mom makes it with chocolate and hazelnut in it, so that's the recipe I use."

"Well, shit. Sold."

"And we gotta think about getting the kids a teacher," Ben said.

Dennis nodded. "They have a counseling appointment with Ari in a couple days, too."

"Your kids are in counseling?" Neryt made a face.

"Their mom was... kind of a piece of work," Dennis said, cringing.

Neryt felt bad for the kids - and him. She fought the urge to give him a hug, not sure if it would be welcome or seen as inappropriate or not.

They continued to play with the kids for awhile, and then the kids were noticeably sleepy and Dennis decided they could go to bed. He picked up Lysa and Ben picked up Owen, and Neryt followed them down to the kids' room, which was decorated with owls and dragons, in an interesting mix of bright and dark colors. The kids had twin beds, on opposite ends of the room. Lysa's bedding and immediate decor was in darker colors, and Owen's in brighter colors, which explained the palette of the wall hangings and general decor.

"Will the pretty lady read us a bedtime story?" Lysa asked.

"It's up to her," Ben said.

"I don't mind," Neryt said, smiling. She looked into the bookcase, and then Lysa used the Force to pull a book off the bookshelf - something called The Cat in the Hat.

"Let us know when you're done and we'll come tuck them in," Dennis said, and he walked Ben out of the room.

The kids stayed awake until the last page, but barely. After Dennis and Ben came back in to tuck them in and kiss them goodnight, they fell asleep right away. Neryt followed them out, turning off the small light that had been on as she read the story, leaving the room lit by a purple nightlight.

"I should head back soon," Neryt said, "before Uncle Idis sends the cavalry after me."

"If you can stay a little longer, I'll make us hot cocoa," Dennis said, "which is nice on a damp night like this."

"OK."

Neryt sat on their couch - reading to the kids made her want to cuddle with a blanket, and there happened to be one on the couch, which she wrapped around herself. She zoned out a little, and then she saw into the kitchen and watched as Ben and Dennis made out, giggling between kisses like a couple of teenagers in love. The sight of the two men kissing each other made Neryt's nipples harden and her cunt twinge, and when Ben and Dennis returned with the hot cocoa, her mouth was dry.

"So now that the kids have gone to bed," Ben said, "how did the Resistance meeting go?"

Dennis shrugged. "Dooku made the point very clear about his objective, but there's this one person in the Resistance, a Vice Admiral Holdo, who seems to be pretty not OK with this entire thing. She pretty much accused Dooku of wanting to take over the Galaxy so he could become Emperor, and she seems to suspect we're still in with the First Order, right down to accusing me and your mom of having a fake relationship for political purposes. So we had to demonstrate that was not the case."

Ben's eyebrows went up. "When you say demonstrate..."

"...They got kind of an eyeful."

"Wait, you're with Ben and his mother?" Neryt asked.

Dennis nodded. "Not at the same time, because that would just be weird, but yes, I'm involved with both of them. Leia's in an open relationship, and my relationship with Ben is open to an extent as well. If Ben was interested in someone and they seemed like a stable person who would treat him well and not negatively impact our relationship, I'd be OK with that, and if we were both interested in that person, that could be a thing too. Polyamory isn't for everyone but I'm not cut out for monogamy - I have a big heart, and a high sex drive. When I'm with someone I am devoted to them and will give them as much love and affection as they can stand, so long as they understand I'm also loving other people, and my love for one does not take away from the other... if anything, it enhances it, because each person brings something different and unique to the table."

"That's really interesting," Neryt said. "Not a bad kind of interesting." Neryt sipped her hot cocoa. "Polygamy is legal here on Serenno, but it's a minority of the population - not something you see every day here. Monogamy is more the norm on Mandalore, and people can get very competitive about mates, which I always found kind of ridiculous - makes more sense to share than to fight about it."

"From what I understand, polygamy is the norm on Eshan, where I'm from originally," Dennis said. "Women outnumber men and it's a matriarchal society, so women usually take co-wives to help with things like child rearing."

"I'm sure that's not all they get help with," Ben quipped.

Dennis leered. "No."

"Oh, myyyy." Neryt smirked into her hot cocoa.

"I'm half-Alameenian and if our ex-friend Valyeris is to be believed about Alameenian culture, they're even more... interesting... there," Dennis said. "They have Living Force traditions that are based in people doing very adult things."

"Well, I wouldn't know about any of that," Neryt said. "I've never had a girlfriend or a boyfriend."

"Seriously? I'd think the dudes and the ladies would be lining up," Dennis said.

Neryt would have blushed if her face weren't already red. "No, all of that has been on the backburner. I was dragged off Mandalore to Serenno when I was twelve to be killed in a rather traumatic manner, and since I was resurrected four years ago I've invested a lot of my time in learning how to fight so nobody can do that to me or my family ever again."

"Cleansing of Serenno?" Ben asked.

"The same." Neryt nodded.

"Yeah, that was... one of Grandfather's finer moments." Ben cringed. "I'm sorry."

"It's not your fault. We don't have blood feuds on Serenno. People are responsible for their own actions, not that of their ancestors."

"Still."

"It's why I'm so keen on learning how to use the Force," Neryt said. "I know there's more to it than learning how to fight with the Force, of course... but if I'm ever up against another Vader, all of my Mando training isn't really going to help, you know?"

"Yeah, I know." Dennis frowned. "Well... I'll do what I can."

"Thank you."

Neryt finished her hot cocoa and then she said, "I really should get back."

"Since it's still raining, let me bring you up on my speeder bike," Dennis said. "I know it's not a hugely long walk, but it's coming down hard enough that you'll get soaked again."

"OK, fair enough."

Neryt retrieved her fresh clothes from the dryer and Ben told her, "You can wear my stuff back to the palace, just make sure you launder it and give it back to me."

"I will, thank you."

Neryt put her clothes in a waterproof bag and Ben walked them to the door. "Good night," Neryt told Ben.

"Night," Ben said.

Ben and Dennis exchanged a quick but smoldering kiss, which made Neryt twinge again, and then she hopped on the back of Dennis's speeder bike and he flew up to the palace. He walked her to the door.

"Thank you for having me over," Neryt said.

"It was fun. And since you'll be my student, we'll have to do that again."

"Yes."

They lingered for a moment, and then Dennis gave her a hug; she warmly hugged him back. He felt himself hardening at the feel of her body against his, and he pulled away feeling self-conscious about it, and then he noticed through her T-shirt that her nipples were hard, and he could faintly smell her arousal. Dennis bit his lower lip, and he and Neryt both looked off to the side before their eyes met again.

"Well, OK, good night," Dennis said. He walked into the door, making Neryt laugh, and then he shook his head and found his way out.

Neryt went to her bedroom suite. She thought about changing into her own pajamas, but she liked wearing Ben's - even though they were clean, they still sort of smelled like him. She climbed into bed and tried to sleep, but the mental image of Dennis and Ben making out in the kitchen kept coming to her mind, and soon it turned into a full-blown fantasy of the two of them making love together, and inviting her to join them. She had never been with anyone before, but she had seen enough of the Holonet to know how it worked. Soon one hand was down her pajama bottoms, the other hand teasing her nipples with a vibrator, as the sex fantasy intensified. She was much more slick than when she usually masturbated, and got off faster and harder than usual, climaxing to the mental image of her sucking Ben's cock while Dennis ate her pussy and Ben sucked Dennis. She screamed into her pillow, and when her body stopped shaking, she brought her fingers to her mouth to suck them clean, wondering what Ben and Dennis would think of her juices.

Sleep claimed her soon afterwards, and her dreams were full of more delicious sex with the two of them, but also beautiful visions of the three building a life together, raising the kids together... making other children. It was so sweet that Neryt woke up crying, aching... and feeling stupid about it. They probably think I'm just this dumb kid.

Across the mountain, Ben had the same dreams, and felt stupid for them.

Chapter Text

Late the following morning, there was a brunch at Dooku's palace for the immediate and extended family to be present when the Resistance contacted them with their vote.

Dooku had been surprised some hours earlier to see Irina just walking in, looking a little disheveled - he'd thought she would have come back last night after her shopping excursion, and found instead that she'd slept elsewhere entirely. He was more than a bit curious, but propriety meant he didn't ask; he figured Irina would get around to telling him if there was anything else to tell.

When Mace Windu showed up at the brunch positively strutting, wearing a grin Dooku had never seen before, it told him exactly everything he needed to know about why Irina had not come home last evening... especially when Irina smiled back at Mace, eyes dancing, cheeks pink.

Sev noticed it too. "Oh myyyyyyy," he said to Dooku, quietly.

Reine and Malak came with Mace, and looked the very opposite in demeanor. Malak began drinking coffee like there was about to be a Galaxy-wide shortage. "Didn't sleep well?" Sev asked his brother.

"No." Malak shot a look in Mace's direction. "Some people were being a bit loud last night."

Mace's grin got even bigger, and Irina's blush deepened.

When everyone was present and accounted for, Dooku opened a transmission to Admiral Sentarou, the brown-skinned man with the long dark braid who had been at the Resistance conference-turned-orgy.

"Have you taken a vote?" Dooku asked him.

"Yes." The Admiral sat up straighter in his seat, squaring his shoulders. "With the exception of Vice Admiral Holdo, the Council's vote for the Resistance to become part of the Commonwealth of Independent Systems was unanimous."

Dooku nodded. He'd expected a majority vote in his favor, but not a near-unanimous vote. "Excellent."

"However, as you have your own conditions on us joining, we have our own conditions as well."

"Let's hear them."

"The first is that if we find out this is a con game like the Clone Wars was and you're secretly in league with the First Order so they can bring about the Empire, we will find out and we will execute you and all of the ex-Knights of Ren. The second is that we really will be holding you to what you said - that you don't want to be Emperor and you don't want to be head of the new government when it's established, once the New Republic is overthrown - we feel collectively that because of your role in the Clone Wars, you should not hold that kind of power, and if you're sincere about paying the debt you owe, then this will be good enough without needing to be in charge of the Galaxy on top of it. The third is that there are lines we're not willing to cross for the sake of getting the job done. We're not a fan of the corporations you allied yourself with during the Clone Wars."

"Believe it or not, neither was I, and my alliance was a master plan to undermine them from within, and cleanse the corruption there, as well." Dooku frowned.

"Yes. Whether or not that was true, we don't want the Resistance associated with that at all this time around. If you truly mean what you say about wanting to cleanse the corruption, there's only so much you can dirty your hands, and playing sneaky collapse-from-within games is part of what got the Galaxy into this mess to begin with."

"Fair enough. However, I may still utilize methods that you do not approve of, including but not limited to hiring mercenaries, including but not limited to kidnappings and assassinations when and where they can be strategically viable."

"We're not the Republic. We understand there is no high road with the First Order. That said... the last string attached is... well... we know you're a Sith. We know the Knights of Ren are Sith. We know you have other Sith with you. We're not going to pretend to understand how the Force works, we just know that Vader and Sidious were Sith and they were very bad people. We're not going to insist you stop being Sith for us to work with you, but we..." The Admiral took a deep breath. "You folks need to be the last of the Sith, for us to join your cause. We don't want to hear about any Sith Academy or you running a new Sith Order looking for recruits, or any of that. The way of the Sith needs to die out, with the lot of you on Serenno."

"Actually... I have already beaten you to this. To make a long story short, just as I feel both the Republic and Empire have failed the Galaxy, I also believe the Jedi and Sith have both failed. There was a Force tradition pre-dating both, called the Je'daii Order, which worked with both the Light and the Dark Sides of the Force, keeping in balance. I would like to start a Je'daii Temple here on Serenno, rebuilding the ancient balance from combining the perspectives of Sith such as myself, and the Jedi we have brought with us such as Yoda, Qui-Gon Jinn, and Mace Windu. It will take some time to work out, and there will always be people who lean more to one side of the Force than the other, just as there are people in the middle, so some Je'daii will be Light and some will be Dark... but it will be one path, two sides, and I believe this is the answer for the next generation of Force users."

There was a long pause, and then the Admiral nodded. "That is excellent news, Count Dooku."

"Is there anything else?"

"No, that was it."

Dooku nodded. "Over the coming weeks I am going to be talking to governmental representatives from prospective member worlds - starting here in the D'Astan Sector, and expanding to sectors of the Outer Rim where the First Order has not yet moved in. It is unfortunate that the First Order took over the Arca system shortly after our departure, because the government of Arcturus would have made natural allies. In a month's time, I intend on putting a charter on the Holonet, openly announcing CIS is back in business, which will hopefully appeal to other systems and planets in the Galaxy, when they see there is a group actively working to protect its member states from the First Order, that isn't the Republic with all of their bureaucracy and rules lawyering that lets the First Order get away with literal murder. Between now and the time the charter goes live, I would like to offer you a base here on Serenno, and we should have weekly meetings about offensive strategy to keep the First Order from encroaching on more of the Outer Rim, and fight them out of their current Outer Rim holdings where we can at our present numbers."

"This is acceptable. How soon before we will see upgrades to our ships and weaponry?"

"Malak is having me review a list of what the First Order has, and the specifications, which was current as of two weeks ago, when he was still second-in-command of their military. I will be putting in an order to match it, to a certain shipyard I used during the Clone Wars which is now a private contractor, and they can have you outfitted with an entirely new fleet of ships by the time the CIS charter goes live on the Holonet. I can have a first wave of droids ready for you in two weeks; my goal is to create fifty droids to every one soldier the First Order has in its employ, and that's a conservative goal. It will take time to get there, but even matching the numbers you have in the Resistance one-to-one is a good start, I think."

"Very good. If that's all..."

"That's all. I will be in contact in five days with a progress report."

Admiral Sentarou saluted. "A pleasure doing business with you, Count Dooku."

Dooku smiled. "Where CIS is concerned, it's Commandant Dooku now. Thank you." He cut the transmission.

"YES," Sev yelled, and threw his arms around Dooku. Dooku hugged him back, and Sev began spinning them around. "WE DID IT. We're gonna kick the First Order's ass so hard..."

"Sweetheart... we haven't begun fighting yet. All they did was agree to fight."

"It's still a step, right?" Sev pulled out a green kazoo from his pocket and blew it. "Right?"

Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose, but he chuckled softly. "Oh, dear."

"Sev's totally not War or anything," Ben snerked.

"No, he's War in a Brat tiara." Reine grinned.

"The First Order is gonna be real sorry they fucked with us," Sev said. "The Seven Light and the Seven Shadow are about to open fourteen giant cans of whoop-ass on them."

"How, pray tell, does one put whoop-ass in a can?" Irina asked, smirking.

"I don't know, but Mace could probably tell me how you put pussy-whipping in a can..."

Irina facepalmed, and Mace made Wookiee noises, and so did Dooku. "Must you?" Dooku asked his bondmate.

"Yeah?" Sev gave a guilty, naughty grin, biting his lower lip.

And then Sev said, "So I have a question."

Dooku braced himself for further trolling. It turned out Sev's trolling was that he actually got deadly serious and showed the decorated General he had been during the time of the Revanchists. "We're fighting both the New Republic and the First Order - but it's going to take a lot of effort for us to fight them both equally at the same time. They also, Force forbid, could decide to take an 'enemy mine' strategy and team up together to fight us... especially considering we've got Tyranus and Malak, working together no less... so the Republic would be within its rights to fear us more than they fear Kylo Ren... and the First Order and New Republic teaming up would then make it easier for Kylo Ren to overthrow the Republic from within and turn the Republic into an Empire, which as we all know nobody has ever done before in the history of anything ever. That may in fact be why Kylo took the course of action that he took, why he warned Malak he was going to make Malak fight him."

Dooku nodded. "Unfortunately that makes all too much sense."

"I think that we need to make it a priority to beat the First Order out of the Outer Rim, and send them back to the Unknown Regions, because if we don't do that it's going to be very hard for us to get anything done... but once that's done, I think instead of trying to fight them both at once in equal measure, which is potentially playing right into what Kylo intended all along... it makes more sense, strategically, to focus more attention on eliminating one side first. And that should be the side that has the most potential to do the most damage if left unchecked. So who do we think that side is? First Order or New Republic?"

Dooku took a deep breath. "To be honest, I don't know."

"Neither do I. And that's what fucking scares me."

Sifo-Dyas cleared his throat. "I hate to interrupt, but, Idis... when you were talking to the Admiral, you mentioned that the First Order had taken over the Arca system. Which includes Arcturus."

Dooku nodded solemnly.

A pause, and then Sifo went on, "And this happened right after we left."

"Yes." Dooku looked like he was in pain. "I meant to address this before our meeting was over... indelicate as this subject is, where there is really no good time to bring it up, but... the ships that were supposed to bring the New Force Order's Jedi and Sith to Coruscant and Korriban, respectively... just vanished. There was no sign of their destruction, but that doesn't mean they weren't destroyed, only that we don't know what happened."

"Oh no." Jocasta gasped. "No..."

"No." Mace's grin dissolved into anguish. "Depa... Plo Koon... Kit...?"

"I'm sorry." Dooku winced. "It's..."

Mace got up, and left. After a minute, Irina went after him.

"I hate to be a downer," Sifo said, "but if the ships just vanished out of the sky, that means the First Order has capabilities that not even Malak knows about."

Malak nodded. "It's entirely possible that they've been developing weapons and other tech and I wasn't given security clearance to see all of the roster, the last while on Arcturus. Kylo may have given me access to just enough to have me think nothing was wrong, while keeping a whole bunch of other stuff from me."

"Dude, I can tell you for a fact they've been developing some scary shit," Dennis said. "Before we got the assignment to go to Arcturus, I was on a team working to develop a wormhole generator, which not only would be even faster than hyperlanes but could make intergalactic travel as fast as hyperspace if not faster."

"That's... lovely." Sifo cringed.

"Isn't it just." Dennis also cringed. "I'm sorry."

"So we have not received an official confirmation of anyone's death, but we cannot assume they are alive, either," Dooku said.

"Or possibly worse than dead." Dennis glared off in the distance.

"I hope not." Dooku looked tired.

"It's like I said yesterday when that came up - Kylo being all nonchalant when the Temple closing announcement was made... it's like he wanted us to find out about the Bando Gora connection, get the Temple shut down, and get the Jedi and Sith packing so he could... fuck." Dennis looked away, glaring even harder.

"Why would he do something like that, though?" Sifo wondered.

Sev raised an eyebrow and puckered his lips in distaste. "Less Force users fighting against him. If he could send them back into the reincarnation pool, or better yet prevent their reincarnation altogether... less people meddling with whatever plans he has."

"The more I know about this situation," Malak said, "the more it seems all so very, very calculated from the start." Malak got up from the table. "To the point where I wonder if his friendship with me was ever sincere at all." He looked like he was going to cry. "Damn it all to fucking hell." He stormed off too.

Dooku sat back down at the table, looking distraught. Sev pulled Dooku close to him, letting Dooku lean on him.

Those who had food left to finish, finished their food in awkward silence, and then serving droids began to clean up the banquet hall. Sev and Dooku got up, and Dooku made his way over to Qui and Obi.

"I have a bit of an assignment for you," Dooku told them.

"Oh dear." Qui-Gon's lips quirked. "Father's giving us chores."

"Well, yes and no." Dooku reflexively straightened his posture, and then he took Qui-Gon aside. "I need a second pair of eyes to look at this situation."

"Meaning..."

"There are some in this group who are more known for their experience with Force visions - such as Sifo-Dyas - but he's already been plagued with visions of a great war and I don't want to additionally burden him with looking into this. I know that you can induce Force visions, so... what I am asking is if you would be so kind as to tell me what the Force thinks I should do. I am quite certain I am in the right, but I was also quite certain of this when I did the preparatory work for the Clone Wars and we see how that turned out. And because you don't always see eye to eye with me on everything, you'd be more open to the Force showing you an oversight or error of judgment, if there is one. I also would like my bondmate's question answered, as far as whether or not we should focus on the First Order or New Republic first... which of the two needs to be subdued sooner."

"All right." Qui-Gon folded his arms. "When do you want this done?"

"Today, if at all possible. The sooner I know for sure what the Force has to say about all of this, the better it will be for all of us. And the additional reason why I am asking you is because... you remember the Great Tree of Serenno, yes?"

Qui-Gon nodded.

"Some time after you died, and I returned home, I meditated at the Tree and asked for guidance. I was shown the path of the Sith. You have a special connection to the Living Force and your signal might be even better with mine in that liminal space surrounding the Tree."

"That will work. I'll bring Obi-Wan with me - he's never seen the Great Tree."

"Good. Have dinner with us tonight and tell me the report." Then Dooku said, "The... censored version."

Qui-Gon smiled impishly. "Would I be doing anything with Obi-Wan and the Living Force that needs to be censored?"

"If you are at all like your Master and his bondmate, very much so."

Qui and Dooku both cringed, and then they laughed together, and Dooku patted Qui's shoulder encouragingly as he walked towards Sev, who was scavenging a last few grapes from a plate. He popped one in Dooku's mouth.

Ben was walking past, and Han approached him hesitantly. "Hey," Han said. "Hang out with your old man today. Bring the kids."

"OK," Ben said.

Then Han turned to Sev. "You too."

Sev nodded. "I haven't had time with the apprentice lately, so today's as good a day as any." Sev looked at Dooku, and Dooku gave him a quick kiss.

Irina came back in, and said to Dooku, "Mace will be joining us for dinner tonight."

Dooku nodded. He otherwise said nothing in response, following Yoda out of the banquet hall.

_

Dennis accompanied Sev, Ben, and the kids to the Solos' villa, where Finn and Chewbacca had their own rooms, and Han had a much larger garage space as a "mancave". Dennis was going to spend time with Leia, and not just sexually - while Leia had made much progress with remembering how to use the Force, Dennis thought it was important for her to regularly practice those skills. And so, in the backyard, they duelled each other, lightsabers humming and hissing as they swung and clashed.

Dennis noticed an edge to Leia's fight that wasn't always there - she was channeling more of her anger into it this time, which as her Sith Master he praised, but as her lover, concerned him. After three rounds, where he won two and she won the third, he sat her down and said, "What's troubling you?"

Leia didn't answer that right away. She looked off in the distance.

Dennis started poking her, poking over her shoulders and down her back, until she put him in a headlock and then gave him a noogie, before kissing the top of his head. Finally Leia let out a long, deep sigh.

"Those Jedi just disappearing..." She closed her eyes, and Dennis saw the pain when she reopened them. He felt the pain, through their Force bond. "I keep thinking of Luke. Missing him. Wondering if he's OK."

"Oh, honey." Dennis sat up and gave her a hug.

Then Leia said, "It's a bit worse because our birthday is tomorrow."

Dennis's eyebrows shot up. "Baby, you're having a birthday? Why didn't you tell me?"

Leia shook her head. "I haven't exactly felt in a celebratory mood since things went down on Arcturus. It was going to be difficult enough to have that day pass without Luke here... but with everything that's gone on..." She sighed again. "And then Kylo's birthday is in nine days."

Dennis put his hands on his hips. "Oh no. You are having a birthday party. And Ben is having a birthday party."

"I don't want you to have to go to a lot of trouble -"

Dennis put his finger to Leia's lips. "Honey, you are one of my bondmates. Honoring the day you were born, the day the Force brought you into this universe... I want to express my gratitude for your life." Dennis leered. "I can think of no better way to express that gratitude than by giving you a lapdance at your party."

Leia facepalmed, and started laughing.

"Hell, we can use the same stripper for Ben's birthday party."

Leia laughed harder, and poked Dennis in the ribs before they kissed.

Sev, Han, and Ben sat and used the Force to throw darts, while the kids colored. After a few rounds of dart-throwing, Ben looked at C3P0 - who had been brought with R2D2 in a storage bin, to keep them shielded amid potential problems on the way off Arcturus, and was now re-assembled. "Do you mind if I make some adjustments to his programming?" Ben asked Han.

"What did you have in mind?"

Ben took a deep breath. "I know Dooku got Serenno First Order-proofed before we arrived, but if he's travelling off-world for CIS business he's going to need to watch his back. Revan and Malak didn't just have assassins back in the day, but they had an assassin robot, HK-47, who they brought with them for defense purposes. I'd feel better if we could program C3P0 as a killing machine."

Han's jaw dropped. "Seriously."

Ben nodded. "I'll otherwise leave his personality intact - I don't think the Exiles want to go through another round of dealing with HK's personality - and there will be protocols in place so he can't be used against us, can't have his kill mode accidentally activated... but I think with what we're dealing with we need all the available weapons in our arsenal, and Threepio is potentially a very potent weapon." Ben looked at C3P0. "But it's up to you."

"If it would be of assistance, please adjust my programming," Threepio told him.

"Kay." Ben scratched his head. "You got a toolbox?"

Han nodded and pointed to where it was. Then he said, "Kylo was never into tinkering around with droids."

"Yeah, I'm not Kylo. I'm his twin brother. He and I have a lot in common, but there's a lot of differences, too."

"Thank fuck for that," Han said under his breath.

As Ben got to work, Han retrieved three bottles of Corellian ale from the mini-fridge, and Ben gave it a funny look, but opened his bottle and took a swig.

"Not much of a drinker, I see," Han said.

"Nope. The fake version of you that I dealt with drank too much, so that kind of gave me incentive to eschew alcohol altogether." Ben took another swig. "I've relaxed a bit about this since moving to Serenno where everyone drinks wine."

Han ran a hand through his hair. "If seeing me drink is, um... upsetting... to you, I won't do it in front of you."

"No, it's OK. It did upset me the first time I was over your place, but I've gotten past it."

"So speaking of upset," Sev cut in, "I'm really worried about my brother."

"Which one?" Ben asked.

"The one you're not fucking."

Ben facepalmed, and so did Han.

Sev went on, "Malak has been taking the loss of Kylo's friendship really, really badly."

Han raised an eyebrow. "They weren't...?"

"Oh Force, no. No, it was never like that." Sev laughed. "We made jokes that they were non-heterosexual Heterosexual Life Partners, but Malak said Kylo wasn't his type, and Kylo claimed to be monogamous with Valyeris... while obviously Valyeris wasn't strictly monogamous with him."

"Yeah." Ben wished he could unsee the holovideo of Valyeris and Joxa Shihai.

"But Malak loved Kylo platonically, and he's been taking this like it's a divorce or something." Sev frowned. "I have never seen him this upset about anything, and it's just... bothering me. I want to make him feel better, and I can't."

Ben nodded. "I feel bad because I was a Revan too, and I was just as close to Malak back then, before things got all fucked up in my Revan's worldline. I've felt like saying to your brother, 'Hey, I'm here,' but I feel like that's the equivalent of... I don't know... like if the kids had a bird and it died, and I bought them another bird and tried to tell them they shouldn't feel bad because 'it's the same bird', except it's really not. I can't be Kylo for him."

"Yeah." Sev sipped his ale. "Sucks." Sev turned to Han. "It's why I haven't made good on losing my wager to you about the Bando Gora tie with the First Order... because..."

"Yeah I get it." Han waved his hand dismissively. "You don't know how he'll react to it, and, frankly, neither do I." He felt ridiculous for getting his hopes up with Malak. It was just a handjob.

"What wager?" Ben's eyebrows went up as he poked his tongue out, working on Threepio's motherboard.

"Never mind," Sev said.

"Oh no. Nope, you're gonna tell me. I'm not gonna let it go till you do."

"OK. Before we found out everything we did, Han told me the Bando Gora was probably funding the First Order. I told him he was probably wrong, which in hindsight is the stupidest thing I've ever said. Han and I took a bet on it, and I told him if I lose, I will set him up on a date with Malak."

Ben laughed so hard he dropped a spanner. "Oh, my Force."

"I can tell Malak has a thing for your mom and dad, but he wasn't going to go there out of respect to Kylo." Sev swigged his ale. "That's obviously not an issue anymore, but now we have Malak the Mopey Zoo Lion cockblocking himself, so..."

"Wow, this family." Ben shook his head, grinning and laughing. "We are fifty shades of fucked up."

"We could be on one of those talk shows," Sev said.

"Well... we definitely need to try to get Malak feeling better, not just because the Revan part of me cares, but from a pragmatic standpoint... if he's going to be Supreme Commander of our armed forces, nobody's going to willingly take orders from a guy who looks like he'd rather hide in bed all day. I have direct experience with this issue."

And then Ben thought, How can I non-intrusively remind Malak he still has a Revan around? and when the answer came to him, he poked his tongue out again and took a detour into Threepio's linguistic programming.

_

Qui-Gon had intended to show Obi-Wan the Great Tree of Serenno before Dooku asked, but had been waiting for more relief in the stress surrounding the Temple closing and the Arcturus departure. Qui had first seen the Tree when he was nineteen, taking a trip with his twenty-nine-year-old Jedi Master that was Dooku's first visit to his homeworld since being taken by the Jedi at age six. When Dooku had found Qui-Gon as a baby, Dooku got to name him; quigon meant "sprout" in the Serennian language, and years later Qui chose a surname from the same language - jinn meaning "green". Qui had always wanted to see the flora of Serenno for which he was named - which he already felt a kinship with and didn't understand why - so after seven years of apprenticeship Dooku conceded and took Qui-Gon there. The forests of Serenno had left quite an impression on Qui-Gon, and he had made quite an impression on them. Qui wondered if the Tree would remember him.

It had stopped raining after the storm last night, but the sky was still a silvery grey color, and there was mist in the air, that thickened surrounding the ancient redwood forest where the Great Tree stood. It brought out the fiery colors of the autumnal deciduous trees that grew with the redwoods, and the damp air intensified the scent of the evergreens and the earthy scent of fallen leaves. Qui found himself even more in awe of the forest than when he'd visited all those years before - the scene was downright magical.

"It's lovely here," Obi said.

"And you look lovely here." Qui stopped to give his bondmate a gentle kiss. "Mind, you are beautiful everywhere. But that auburn coloring of yours goes well with the fall foliage."

Obi smirked. "If you are comparing me to a tree, that is quite a compliment."

"I do enjoy your wood. And your sap."

Obi chuckled, and then Qui took his hand, a reverent hush coming over them as the Great Tree loomed in sight. The Great Tree had gotten its name because it was the tallest tree on Serenno. Serennian redwoods could grow up to four hundred feet tall - the Great Tree was a thousand feet high, its top obscured by the clouds of this grey day. The Great Tree was also as wide as a shuttlecraft, and there was a hollow space in the bottom of the trunk where the Tree could be entered, like a cave.

"Are you performing the rite inside of the tree, Master?" Obi asked.

"We are going to be performing the rite on the tree." As they got closer to the Great Tree, Qui-Gon gestured to its lowest branches - which were still a few dozen feet off the ground - and were thick enough for one and a half adults to lay on. The bottom branches also had a vine growing around them, which had a symbiotic relationship with the Tree. "There's a bit of sap which makes the way up slippery, but the vines will help with that."

Obi-Wan sighed. "You're expecting me to climb a tree with you."

"Yes... because I need your help with the rite. As you know from work we have done before, ecstasy is a time-honored way of altering one's state of consciousness to induce visions. Now, of course, if you don't want to have sex..."

Obi ran for the Tree, grabbed onto a vine, and used the Force to pull his way up. A few moments later, his Sith robe and undergarments landed on the ground. Obi lay on his side, propped up on one elbow. "Well?"

Qui-Gon chuckled, and then he approached the Tree more slowly. He knelt and kissed the ground at its base, and then he stripped out of his Jedi robes and undergarments. Obi admired the view as Qui used the Force to scale the trunk, steadying himself with a vine. Qui then sat on the same branch where Obi was laying, and tickled his feet playfully, making Obi squirm in a way that brought him to the edge of the branch.

"Dammit, Qui-Gon," Obi said, "you need to be more careful."

"Do I?" Qui-Gon smirked, and then he reached out, his arm between Obi and the edge, gently rolling him back towards the center of the branch. "You know I wouldn't let you fall."

"It's a bit late for that," Obi quipped.

"Yes, my pet Sith." Qui leaned in to kiss the tip of Obi's nose. "Such a fearsome boy you are."

Obi's response was to tickle Qui under the armpits, but while Qui squirmed and laughed, he otherwise held steady on the branch. Qui got Obi to stop tickling him by kissing him, hard. Then Qui-Gon reached, cupping Obi's erection in his palm. "My, what's this? I think I found a redwood cone of unusual size."

"Maybe you should examine the specimen, for the sake of science."

"Maybe I should." Qui-Gon leaned down and took a lick of the precum forming at the slit. "Mmmmmm."

Obi gasped, hands fisting in his former Jedi Master's hair, and then he said, "You know, I don't know what you were planning on doing up here, but if you had anything beyond oral examination in mind, I didn't bring the lube with us."

Qui-Gon smiled. "The Force provided some." He reached with one hand where the branch met the trunk, and then he showed Obi the sap all over his hand. Obi gave him an incredulous look as Qui-Gon then took his own cock in hand, smearing the sap over it.

"We've used bacta as lube a great many times... but tree sap?"

"Not just any tree sap. Sacred tree sap. It doesn't even have the bitter taste most evergreen tree sap has." Qui stuck a finger in Obi's mouth, and Obi hummed with pleasant surprise - it was akin to maple syrup in flavor.

"That's quite good," Obi said. "Good enough that I need another taste." He lowered his head and took Qui-Gon's cock in his mouth, hungrily cleaning the sap from it with his swirling tongue.

A few minutes later, the sweet taste of the sap combined with the salty sweetness of Qui-Gon's cum in Obi's mouth. Qui let out a deep groan as he finished, and Obi licked his lips before kissing Qui, letting his Master taste the combination of his cum and the sap.

"That is very good indeed," Qui said. He produced more sap with his hand, and smeared some on Obi's cock, and gently pushed Obi back, as he leaned in to take Obi into his mouth. Obi gasped and shivered as Qui brought him to that edge... and then pulled back. It was something Obi was familiar with, yet felt like a shock every time Qui-Gon played the trick. Getting him to the point of climax, and then holding back, to build it up again. Over and over again, until Obi could hold back no longer, and exploded in Qui-Gon's mouth, flailing so much that Qui had to hold him steady so he wouldn't fall off the branch.

When Obi caught his breath, he saw Qui-Gon was hard again. "Which way do you want it, love?" Qui asked him.

"Yes?"

They laughed together, and Obi came up to kiss Qui-Gon, and then Obi pushed Qui onto his back, so Qui was now laying across the tree branch, his head towards the trunk. Obi collected tree sap onto his hand and rubbed it onto Qui's lips, kissing him, and then rubbed it onto his nipples, licking and suckling them clean before adding a second coat and repeating, licking more feverishly than before. Obi applied sap to Qui's cock once more but this time licked it off, teasingly, and then he put sap-covered fingers in Qui's ass, fingering him, readying him to be taken. Qui-Gon did the honors of lubing Obi's cock with the sap, and then he braced himself for the sweet pleasure-pain of being entered... claimed.

Qui was the top often enough that bottoming was still a tight fit, so despite his urgency, Obi went in slow and gentle, and once he was in, he gave Qui a moment to adjust. Then he began to thrust, at a mild pace, neither fast nor very slow. Qui groaned as the curve of Obi's cock hit his prostate, and again as Obi took Qui-Gon in hand, stroking to the rhythm of his thrusts.

"How's that?" Obi purred.

"So good..." Qui's fingers ran through the ginger pelt on Obi's chest, lingering on the pink nipples, teasing them erect. Obi's free hand stroked over Qui's muscular torso, and then he collected more sap on his hand and smeared Qui's nipples again, leaning in for yet another taste. Qui-Gon gasped, and his nails dug into Obi's back. Obi growled, nipping Qui's throat before he could stop himself, and Qui bucked, nails raking Obi's back again as Obi began to thrust faster, harder.

The tree branch was firm and sturdy, but it still rocked underneath them, enough that Qui felt a moment of panic about it snapping under their weight and motion - and then, seeming to respond to his fear, one of the vines rose up and seized his wrists, dragging his hands away from Obi, binding his arms to the Tree... and the same was done with his ankles.

"My," Obi said, with a wicked grin. "I guess even the Tree thinks you look delectable tied up."

As if to agree with him, a twig from a branch just above them lowered itself, and began to move back and forth of its own accord to rake its needles over Qui-Gon's torso, like a thousand nails grazing his flesh. The stinging pleasure was exquisite, and Qui moaned, especially as the needles brushed his nipples and over his cock.

Obi felt a little envious - he did love it when Qui clawed him - and the Tree decided to not leave him out, with one of the twigs from the branch they were on leaning in to give him the same treatment, raking his back and ass and thighs with needles. Obi cried out and went wild, fucking Qui-Gon furiously, with Qui rocking his hips to match Obi's rhythm, delirious with lust and sensation.

They stayed in that frenzied rhythm for what felt like an eternity, not able to get enough of the Tree's needles raking them, the feeling in their Force bond of penetrating and being penetrated, where they blended into each other, and could feel the passion and lust each held for the other. As badly as they needed to come, they needed to fuck, they needed to mate, here in the presence of the Living Force, like the Force itself was making love to them as a third partner with the clawing, raking of the Tree's needles.

When they were at the breaking point, the branch they were fucking on began to vibrate, producing the most wonderful sensations through Qui-Gon's body and especially into his ass, into Obi's cock... and they screamed as they climaxed together. Qui's cum got on the needles that had been raking Obi's flesh, and that twig seemed to shudder of its own accord, like it too was experiencing pleasure. Obi took Qui's bound hands, and their minds linked as Qui reached out to the Force to see what he could see.

The vision was fast - done and over with in a matter of minutes - and then Qui-Gon opened his eyes and saw three rays of light piercing the clouds, shining over them. The vines unwrapped from his arms and legs, but one vine stroked his face before it withdrew and Qui-Gon heard something in his head. A noise that sounded a lot like a sexually satisfied groan, and then three words:

Welcome home, Singer.

_

Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon, and Mace joined Dooku, Severin, Irina, Neryt, and Isshaddik for their usual family dinner. The lamb skewers with roasted root vegetables were delicious, and for dinner, there was cake...

...a chocolate cake Sev had decorated with two shades of purple frosting bearing the words CONGRATS ON THE SEX.

Irina facepalmed when she saw it, but laughed, and after a moment of shock Mace laughed too. Dooku bitchfaced, but his eyes twinkled at Sev's mischievous grin.

"So you guys are a thing," Neryt said.

"It appears so," Mace replied.

Neryt nodded, and patted Irina's hand. "It's about time, Mom."

"So speaking of sex, Obi-Wan and I visited the Great Tree this afternoon," Qui-Gon said.

"I thought I told you to give me the censored version," Dooku snapped.

"Yes. That is censored from what it could be."

Dooku groaned into his tea.

Qui went on. "The short answer is that it does appear we are going to succeed in our objectives. However, three things must be done for this to happen."

"All right... what are they?"

"In order, we must secure Tython... destroy the Star Forge... and we will need to take Coruscant, but not until the Republic has been engaged." Qui-Gon sipped his tea. "The First Order must remain our primary objective... but we must also find a way to bring the Republic into the conflict against the First Order, on their own."

Sev raised an eyebrow. "So in other words, take Kylo's assumed strategy of 'let's you and him fight', where he's banking on either a CIS versus Republic strategy which lets the First Order work unimpeded while we duke it out... or where the Republic and First Order team up and turn the Republic into an Empire... and we spin that strategy on its head and incite the Republic to get more aggressive against the First Order."

"Yes. I was not shown exactly how to bring this about, only that it is necessary to our victory in taking Coruscant and establishing a new system of Galactic government."

Dooku steepled his hands. "Fascinating."

As cake was served, Sev said, "Dennis told me that tomorrow is Leia's birthday."

Dooku frowned. "Why didn't she say anything earlier?"

"Oh, you know. It's been a rough year. Luke. Kylo."

"She is going to be my adopted daughter, she is bloody well having her birthday recognized. I will be hosting a party here for her." Then Dooku turned to Qui and Obi. "I think as part of the celebration, we might as well go ahead and finalize my adoption of you and Leia."

"Yes, that works." Qui-Gon smiled and Obi did too.

After cake and more tea, Qui and Obi hugged Dooku good night, and headed off to their villa. Before Mace could escape with Irina to her bedroom suite, Dooku cleared his throat and said, "Mace, may I speak to you alone for a few minutes?"

Mace gave a little groan. "Oh, here we go," he grumbled.

Mace and Dooku stepped outside, and sat on a bench near the rose gardens. After a moment of silence, Mace said, "I know I'm not a Count or any kind of nobility, and I know we were on opposite sides of the Clone Wars -"

"-I didn't say I disapproved." Dooku paused, and then he said, "My sister has been very lonely and sad and just as my life has been made immeasurably better by my relationship with Severin, I feel my sister will benefit from moving on with her life with someone who loves her. I can tell you care for my sister a great deal." Dooku gave him a predatory glare. "It had better stay that way, because if you break her heart, I will torture you in the most excruciating manner possible before I hack you from limb to limb, and then use Sith alchemy to re-animate your newly dead body so I can do it again, this time more drawn out than before."

Mace blinked.

Then Dooku started laughing, and Mace laughed too, nervously - and then Dooku barked, "I meant every word of what I said."

Dooku got up and headed inside, and after a moment Mace headed back in. As their paths took separate routes within the palace, Dooku turned to Mace and said, pleasantly, "Good evening," giving a small bow before he ducked out of sight.

Chapter Text

On the morning of Leia Organa-Solo's fifty-seventh birthday, she was woken up by Han raining kisses over her face.

He had brought her breakfast in bed.

"You don't cook," Leia slurred, her voice thick with sleep.

"Finn cooked. I delivered."

It was pancakes, a bowl of assorted Serennian berries in whipped cream, and bacon, with fresh orange juice. Leia smiled and kissed Han back. Han shoved a piece of bacon in her mouth, and she bit the end of it, and murmured approvingly - it was cooked exactly to her liking, neither too crispy nor too limp.

Han continued feeding Leia, until it came time for the pancakes, which Leia cut into pieces herself - every now and again she'd direct the fork towards Han for him to take a bite. "The kid's a good cook," Han said.

"So on the note of others cooking..." Leia pursed her lips. "My boyfriend is insisting on throwing a birthday party for me this evening, and Dooku is hosting it at the palace."

"Yeah, I figured."

Leia stroked Han's face. "I know today is going to be rough for you too, with Luke being gone."

Han nodded. "I don't want to ruin your birthday, but I think I need to... hole up tonight, in the mancave. Not be around people."

"I understand." Leia pulled him into her arms, and after they hugged for a minute, she kissed the top of his head.

"I do want to do something for your birthday, though."

"Well... I had already planned on making some time for all of the bondmates. So you could get your time first, if you'd like."

Han's response to that was to grab Leia's hand and put it on the bulge in his flannel pajama pants. He gave her that cocky, mischievous grin that she still loved all these years later. "I'm already ready for you, babe."

Leia tsked. "So naughty."

Han's grin got bigger. "Does that mean I get your birthday spankings?"

Leia pushed the breakfast tray aside, and yanked at the waistband of his pants. "Turn around."

Once Han's ass was exposed to her, Leia slapped it. "One."

Han moaned.

Leia slapped Han's left ass cheek. "Two." The right. "Three."

"Guhhhhh..."

By the time she got to fifty-seven, Han's ass was a beautiful shade of pink, with deeper red imprints left by her small hands. When Han turned back around, his cock was slick from head to shaft, with thick precum trailing down the slit. "Oh, my," Leia said. She leaned in to take a teasing lick at the head, making him gasp, and then she took a few more licks... giving him three bonus spankings to make the even number of sixty.

And then she pulled her head up. Her own pussy was soaking wet, and she showed him. Han licked his lips, and Leia used the Force to push Han onto his back, and then she climbed over him and straddled his face. Han loved it, groaning into her as she rode his tongue, slowly at first, and then faster, as his tongue worked faster. As she got closer to orgasm, he added his fingers inside her, and the sloppy sounds of finger-fucking, licking and slurping filled the air, punctuated by Han's moans and Leia's cries. When she came, he came too, taking her hand with his free hand.

I love you, Han spoke into her mind through the Force.

It made her cry - not simply the intensity of her orgasm, or the way her climax set off his without even being touched, but the way he had been working so hard to overcome his fear of anything Force-related, and was becoming much more comfortable with it. She was proud of him, and as she climbed off his face and positioned herself to lay on top of him, she cradled his head in her hands, kissing his face all over - then when she tasted herself on him, she licked the juices from his chin, making them laugh.

They kissed, and Leia's fingers played down Han's chest. "Can you do another?" she asked him.

"I could be persuaded." Han smiled.

"I can help get you ready." Leia kissed her way down, and took Han's cock into her mouth. Han groaned, arching to her. She sucked slowly, one hand cupping and rubbing his balls, the fingers of the other stealing to the sensitive place between cock and balls, and then pushing inside him, finding the prostate. She worked his prostate and balls in rhythm to her sucking and slurping, making Han moan louder and louder, and just before he could come, she stopped. She rose up, and guided his hands to roam over her body. He ripped her camisole in half, exposing her breasts. He played with her nipples for a moment until she grabbed his hands, guiding his arms around her as she moved to straddle his hips. He sat up a little as she impaled herself on his cock, and he took a nipple into her mouth, suckling hard and hungry. Leia clutched at his head, crying out.

They fucked slowly, Han going back and forth between each nipple, adoring her breasts like he was worshiping the breasts of a goddess. He kept one arm around her, fingers stroking her spine, and pulled back the other hand to play with the breast he wasn't sucking on... before the hand slid down her stomach, to her mound, his fingers dipping into her cleft to find her swollen, aching nub. He sped up his thrusts inside her as he worked her clit in circles, and it wasn't long before Leia was shaking, gasping, her nails raking his chest. As many times as they'd done this over the years, it was never tired and boring - years of practice had made Han very familiar with her body and what it liked, and he drew on all that experience now, his fingers rubbing in that perfect rhythm guaranteed to send her off if he kept going. "Don't stop," Leia moaned. "Don't stop don'tstopdon'tstopdon'tyoufuckingstop..."

"Almost there, baby." Han started kissing her neck, which was just as much a weak spot as her sensitive nipples.

"Fuck..." Leia grabbed onto him for dear life and began riding hard.

A moment later they climaxed together, Leia's juices gushing over his fingers as he felt that telltale set of contractions beneath his hand and around his cock. They kissed through their orgasm, moaning into each other's mouths, their Force energy wrapping and weaving together in beautiful ribbons of light.

Leia lay on Han's chest, listening to his heart beat. They couldn't make words just yet, but they were so connected in the Force and caught up in emotion that there was no need for words - the feelings spoke louder.

But words still felt good, and when Leia felt some of her brain come back, and husked, "I love you too."

Han patted her ass. "I know."

They kissed again, and Leia said, "Will you at least be coming for the birthday party, even if you need to hole up by yourself after?"

"Yeah, I will." Han nodded.

_

Irina took Jocasta into the city to go food shopping for the party, and while they were out, Neryt gave Reine her first swoop riding lesson at a swoop racing track on the far end of the city. Neryt had Reine keep the swoop at its lowest speed setting, to get a feel for the way the vehicle moved - it was much smaller in size than a regular speeder bike - and to be able to maneuver it around the track with its twists and turns, at that speed. Then Reine watched as Neryt did the course at full speed, and cheered when Neryt finished, cheering again when Neryt checked a monitor and said "I beat my own best time."

Reine and Neryt went back to the palace and Reine helped Neryt decorate for Leia's party. As they decorated they talked a bit about themselves and their backgrounds; Neryt could sense the anger when Reine talked about being recruited as a Knight of Ren, though this anger softened when she told the story of how she became Malak's sparring partner and that turned into romance.

"Before him, I'd always thought of myself as only interested in women," Reine said, "but there was something about him."

After Reine and Malak consummated their relationship, they began to remember their past life together, when she was a Cathar named Juhani, a fallen Jedi who became Sith apprenticed to Malak... and eventually, his wife and Empress. Juhani had, like Reine, also been primarily into women, and still continued to feel a craving for female companionship, so she was given "a playmate, a blue female Twi'lek named Mission", and Malak himself learned to shapeshift with the Force and occasionally took the form of a green female Twi'lek "for fun". After Revan killed Malak, Revan took in Juhani for Mission's sake.

Neryt's jaw dropped, and her cunt twinged. She remembered a few different worldlines, where events happened differently and her life ended different ways - but in one of them, Mission and Juhani would make appointments a few times a week to make love for hours... and then her husbands Revan and Meetra would discipline her later for being "such a bad girl". Neryt looked away, hoping Reine didn't pick up on her sudden wave of arousal.

"I've been wondering if my path will ever cross with whoever Mission is now."

Neryt thought about telling her, and couldn't, feeling strangely shy. Reine was only ten years older than her, but she still felt like Reine might think she was "too young"... and what if she didn't? Neryt had never been in a relationship before - the last four years of her life had been so intensely focused on her martial arts training, determined to carry on in the Fett family business of bounty hunting... determined to never let herself fall at the hands of someone like Vader, ever again.

Dennis chose that minute to walk in, and see how everything was coming. "Right there is where the pole should go," Dennis said, gesturing to a center-corner of the banquet hall.

"Pole?" Neryt cocked her head to one side.

Reine laughed. "Stripper pole."

"Oh. Oh." Neryt facepalmed, laughing.

"Yeah, I'm gonna give Leia a lapdance, and anyone else who's interested." Dennis waggled his eyebrows.

"Oh, I'm pretty sure Malak will be interested." Reine grinned. Then she frowned. "I'm really worried about him."

Dennis nodded. "We all are."

Reine glared as she anchored the metal pole to the floor in the place Dennis specified. "Fucking Kylo. It's bad enough I know that fucker knew about me and my brother and kept us apart all that time and never told me... but what he did to his own best friend is something I'm even more pissed off about. Alexis... Malak... is incredibly loyal and loving and is the kind of person who will give you the shirt off his back if you need it."

"And he looks good shirtless."

"He sure does." Reine smiled, and then she resumed glaring. "He betrayed me, but he fucking used Malak. He treated Malak like a piece of garbage. And he's been taking it pretty bad. The Knights of Ren was his life the last couple years. He really needs a friend. Honestly, with all the jokes we made about him and Kylo being married, Malak needs a boyfriend. ...One who isn't his brother, I mean."

Dennis laughed. "Well, Malak and I just consider ourselves siblings with benefits, but I get it."

"Wait, so you're not just with Ben... and Leia... but you and your own brother?" Neryt gasped a little.

"Yeah. And Sev too. It wasn't until we were all consenting adults, and it just kind of... happened... because of how unusually close we were to each other, more than brothers usually are. We had to be, to survive the way we were brought up. The feelings got weird and intense and it turned sexual. Sev and I were actually each other's for real boyfriend for some years and that got fucked up after our ex - we were sharing a girlfriend. My kids' mother." Dennis bit his lip. "Sorry if that weirds you out -"

"No, that's hot." The words came out before Neryt could stop herself, and then she wanted to go hide somewhere, her face burning.

"I think it's hot," Reine said. "I may be more into women, but damn if I don't like watching pretty boys kiss."

"You've seen a lot more than us kissing." Dennis leered.

Reine nodded enthusiastically.

"But yeah, I'm with you in that Malak needs extra love," Dennis said, "from someone besides you, and besides his brothers. He was the oldest triplet and he really took on that 'oldest brother' role and has spent his entire life taking care of everyone else... he needs someone to take care of him."

"Hello?" The group heard Han Solo's voice from the hallway.

"Hey, we're down here," Dennis yelled.

A few minutes later, Han poked his head in. He was wheeling a hand cart with a few coolers on it. "I decided to be a good guest and hit the liquor store, and I found a food truck downtown that specializes in Corellian food..."

Dennis made an excited noise. "Sev and Malak will be happy."

"I'll show you where the kitchen is so you can unload the cold stuff," Neryt said, grateful for an excuse to duck out. I think my ovaries are going to explode.

_

Leia's birthday celebration started with dinner, and a large strawberry-topped sheet cake. After dinner, Leia was surprised by a few presents from the group, including Dooku giving her a strand of iridescent Serennian sea pearls that had belonged to his grandmother. "If I had a biological daughter, I would have given this to her," he said, putting it around her neck, "so now that you are becoming my daughter, these are yours."

Leia felt herself tearing up and she hugged the old man, who warmly returned her embrace.

A short time afterwards, Count Nalju arrived to oversee the adoption rite. The old man spent a moment staring at Qui-Gon - like he was looking into him - and Qui felt strangely nervous.

The adoption rite was performed much the same as Yoda's. Irina and Dooku lit the candles at the ancestor shrine above the living room fireplace, and then, from the flame lit by the candle for the first Dooku, a candle was lit by Obi, Qui, Leia, and Dooku, who then carried the candles down an aisle of candles, to an unlit candle waiting on a small table.

They set their candles down, and Dooku presented his empty hands. The Singer withdrew his antler-handled knife. "I know you as my children," Dooku told them. The Singer cut his wrist, and the blood flowed onto the upturned hands of Qui, Leia, and Obi.

"I know you as my father," Qui-Gon said, looking into Dooku's eyes, and the Singer cut his wrist. As he did, Qui-Gon remembered his earliest childhood, when he was practically attached to Dooku's hip, being told Dooku had found him as a baby, when Dooku was twelve. Remembering, in particular, when he asked Dooku to take him as his apprentice when he became a Jedi Knight, and four hours after Dooku was Knighted, he kept the promise he had made. The way he and Dooku fought bitterly through that apprenticeship - yet also had moments where they were the best of friends, where Dooku had let his guard down just enough for Qui-Gon to feel the weight of the burden he carried on his shoulders, the pain in his soul, even then, as a young man. The way he'd just wanted his Master to be happy, and Dooku finally was, and that happiness shimmered across their Force bond. The Jedi forbade attachments, but there was nothing more sacred than these attachments.

"I know you as my father," Obi-Wan said, and the Singer cut his wrist. There was a time when he hated Dooku, had despised him as a filthy traitor - because Qui-Gon had put him on such a pedestal, and because Obi-Wan was young and hot-blooded and couldn't see, then, that Dooku had been such an exemplary Jedi that he felt he had no choice but to leave the Jedi and make the choices he'd made - even with blood on his hands - for the greater good of the Galaxy. The intensity of his hatred had only grown when he knew on some level Dooku was right, and he should have joined Dooku's cause - Dooku had become what he walked the line of becoming, himself, in his rage at Qui's death, feeling helpless as he was sucked into greater and greater turmoil beyond his control. He admired Dooku now - he thought Dooku was one of the greatest men he'd ever known - and he was grateful that they had put past hostilities aside, coming to an understanding of each other... proud to be made his son, proud to be acknowledged worthy of his legacy.

"I know you as my father," Leia said, and the Singer cut her wrist. Leia had heard that Bail Organa used to be a friendly acquaintance of Dooku's - House Organa had taken in Adan Dooku and his family when they fled the Cleansing of Serenno - and she couldn't help but think that, from wherever he was, Bail approved of this. She'd fought against Vader, her own blood father, and still felt bitterly towards him even after gaining a small amount of sympathy from reading her mother's old diaries. The rebellious, fighter part of her felt a smug satisfaction in knowing if Vader found out she had been adopted by his nemesis, it would piss him off. She also knew how Kylo idolized Vader. She had caught him praying to his grandfather's spirit once, asking him Show me the power of the Dark Side.

You got your wish, honey, just not in the way you intended. Grandpa Tyranus would show him the power of the Dark Side very well indeed, when he had Kylo begging for mercy.

But all of that was just an added bonus to the adoption - when Dooku said that they had quite a bit in common, while not everything, it was a source of pride for her. Dooku was the first Rebel, looking back at his war against the unjust, corrupt Republic, and the Rebel Alliance was truer to his spirit than the Empire was; the New Republic had started off closer to his ideals of a reformed Galactic government, before it became plagued by the same old corruptions. The ties of their heart-bond seemed to be bringing it full circle. They weren't just performing an adoption rite, acknowledging an affection and appreciation of each other like father and daughter... there was something very right about this on a cosmic level, like they were joining forces to save the Galaxy.

Like Kreia and the Jedi Exile did, a long time ago.

Dooku, Obi, Qui, and Leia dripped their blood onto the unlit candle, and lit it together.

"In fire and blood, I pronounce you father, sons, and daughter," the Singer spoke. "Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Leia Organa-Solo are brought by the mighty ancestors into House Dooku, and House Dooku is greater for their presence in it. What the Kalae has brought together, let no man put asunder."

Dooku took Leia's hand in one hand, and Qui and Obi's hands clasped the other. They smiled through their tears, and then the four embraced.

And then the Singer stared at Qui-Gon again, and they watched as he quietly unfastened the clasp of his green cape, and took it off his shoulders. The Singer approached, and handed Qui-Gon his staff, and then draped the cape around Qui-Gon's shoulders, clasping it in front.

"You are the Singer of Serenno now," Count Nalju told him.

Qui-Gon's jaw dropped. "How...?"

The old man patted his shoulder. "Of course I know." He smiled. "Now I can rest."

Dooku's lips quirked. "I should have seen this coming."

"I saw it coming," Obi quipped. Dooku rolled his eyes.

After Count Nalju left, the group relaxed in the living room for a bit, before the "real party" would begin in the banquet hall, which had been rearranged by Reine and Neryt earlier that afternoon. C3P0 was wearing a bow tie, and performed serving duties. He approached a surly-looking Malak with a tray of alcoholic beverages, shot glasses, and a dish of crushed ice.

"Care for a drink, Darth Meatbag?" Threepio asked Malak.

Malak's eyebrows went up. He was instantly reminded of when, in his past life as the original Malak, HK-47 had informed him of his "meatbag status", and Revan was so amused by his annoyance that he programmed HK to use the word "meatbag" as often as possible.

"I'll have whiskey, neat," Malak said, "and it's Malak."

"Of course, Lord Meatbag."

Ben couldn't contain his amusement, shaking with silent laughter, his face pink. When he caught Malak glaring at him, Ben's laughter was no longer silent, and he teared up.

"You." Malak shook his head. "Fucking hell."

Threepio handed Malak his drink, and Malak politely thanked the droid, before Threepio replied with, "It was my pleasure, Darth Meatbag."

"FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF."

Ben was practically rolling on the floor. Dennis was laughing pretty hard too.

"Ben, what did you do," Dennis howled.

"I made some adjustments to his programming," Ben said. "We could use an assassin droid, with everything going on."

"Ugh." Dennis facepalmed, remembering. "Back in the day, after I left the Jedi Order and the Republic military, long before I picked up Kreia and the rest of my crew, it was just me, wandering space, with only HK and a few other robots for company. All we did was watch lame, cheesy sci-fi B-movies and HK snarked the hell out of them. HK snarked the hell out of everything, really. I hope you didn't completely rewire Threepio's personality because going through that shit once was bad enough."

"No," Ben said, "but I could if you're being enough of a shit." He grinned at Dennis, and Dennis swatted his ass.

"You'd do it just to get punished," Dennis rasped, before nibbling on Ben's neck.

"Hey hey," Han yelled. "Get a room, son."

Ben stuck his tongue out at Han, and then he said, "Well, it's late enough now that I'm gonna take the kidlets home now so the adult portion of the festivities can begin."

"OK." Leia nodded. Owen and Lysa approached her and together, gave her a hug.

"Happy birthday, Gramma," Owen said.

Leia tousled their hair. "Thank you, sweetheart."

Lysa smiled. "You're a princess now, right?"

"Well, I was Princess of Alderaan," Leia said, not wanting to be reminded of Alderaan.

"Technically with me becoming Regent and you three now being recognized as my children, you are very much a Princess of Serenno," Dooku said.

"You should have a crown," Lysa told Leia.

"You're not putting me in any bloody crown," Obi-Wan scoffed.

"Then we'll be sure to get a tiara made just for you," Sev teased him. Obi bitchfaced; Sev stuck his tongue out.

"OK, kids, come on." Ben hugged Leia on his way out. "Good night, Mom. Happy birthday."

"Thank you." Leia hugged him hard.

Ben looked down, and then off to the side, and he stammered, "I... ah... um... Iloveyou."

"I know." Leia smiled.

After Ben took the kids out, Han said, "Yeah, I should get going too."

Leia and Han kissed, chaste at first, and then passionately with tongue, eliciting a "WOOOOO!" from some of the audience. Leia grinned at Han, and he smiled a little, before shuffling off.

_

The party guests assembled in the banquet hall, except Dennis - Sev put on music.

Dennis strutted in wearing a black T-shirt and black leather pants, and he began to dance to the music, dancing his way over to Leia, then Sev, then Malak - close enough for them to get a good look, but not close enough to be touched. As the song began to wind down, Dennis got close enough for Leia to touch, and she ran his hands over him, which spurred on a few pelvic thrusts. Leia growled and ripped Dennis's shirt off, and he guided her hands over his bare chest, through his chest hair, with her fingers lingering on his nipples before he danced over to Malak.

Malak turned pink, and his blush rose to the points of his ears as Dennis began to undo his leather pants, working his hips so his crotch and ass were swirling in Malak's face. Malak helped Dennis pull the pants down, and Dennis leaned in to give him a hungry kiss before making his way to Sev - Dennis was now wearing a black lacy thong, and nothing else.

Sev grabbed Dennis's butt, and groped his crotch, which was already hardening. Dennis pushed Sev's face into his crotch, letting Sev nuzzle the bulge, before he gave Sev a playful little kiss and danced his way over to the pole.

Dennis hadn't done pole dancing since he was in his early twenties, so he was out of practice, but he'd had enough experience with it that his body remembered, and now he had enough command of the Force to climb up the pole with ease, swinging around it on his way down. The song changed and Dennis danced around the pole, then climbed back up it again, a larger swing on his way down, dancing some more once he hit the ground. He danced over to Leia, who was blushing and laughing. He kissed her hands and guided them back over his body, and their eyes locked as she caressed him, traced his muscle definition with loving care. He grabbed her head and thrust in her face, and she nuzzled his bulge like Sev had done, but unlike Sev, she gave a tug at the waistband of his thong with her teeth, growling.

Dennis growled back and kissed her hard, and then kissed down her neck, to kiss between her breasts. And then he pulled away, teasing her, shaking his butt as he continued dancing to the music, dancing his way back to the pole to give it another go.

Dooku looked like he wanted to be anywhere but there... and yet watching Sev with his brother got Dooku's mind racing, plotting all the things he wanted to do to Severin. He understood why Sev had encouraged him to stay for this part, and the way Sev's hand began rubbing his knee, slowly rubbing up his thigh, confirmed that understanding. I could dance for you like this, Sev told him. Sev had given him a lapdance before, what seemed like ages ago, when they lived together at the New Force Order Temple. I would be your whore for the evening.

Dooku responded by nibbling Sev's ear.

Dennis saw an opportunity to help Sev a little - he danced back over to Sev, and pulled Sev up off his feet, getting Sev to dance with him. Soon Dennis was helping Sev take off his clothes, and then they were kissing and caressing each other, as Dooku watched with interest. Dennis passionately kissed Sev... and smiled knowingly when Dooku grabbed Sev from behind, pulling him back to one-up Dennis with how hard he could kiss his bondmate. Sev groaned, groping Dooku aggressively.

My brother's hot... but I think Daddy's even hotter. Daddy should punish me for being so naughty with my brother.

Dooku kissed Sev back, and then nibbled Sev's neck. Yes, I should.

Sev kissed Dooku again. "Mmmmmm..." Fuck, I want you. Sev's hand stole to Dooku's crotch, rubbing in slow, lazy circles. I should blow you right here.

Dennis danced his way over to Malak, letting Malak touch and kiss him... and then it was back to Leia. Leia had forgotten all about her angst over Luke, for right now - she was lost in Dennis's body, ogling it, touching it... being touched by him. He was more brazen with his touch now, hands cupping her breasts, sliding over her stomach, down to her crotch and inner thighs, back up to her breasts, as she ran her hands over his back and ass, over his hips and stomach and chest, down to the growing bulge. At last, Leia could help herself no longer, and she sucked the head of Dennis's cock through his thong, which made Dennis cry out with approval.

When she pulled her head back, she met his eyes, challenge gleaming in hers. Your move.

Dennis picked Leia up, and carried her out of the banquet hall. They needed to find someplace, anyplace, to fuck.

Just before Sev could shut the music off - Yoda walked in. He'd been in the 'fresher for a long time, after the adoption ceremony... and now Sev understood why. He was wearing the same assless chaps and nipple tassels that he'd tried on at Temptations.

"Oh, Force," Dooku cried.

Yoda sauntered over to the pole, and climbed his way up. He shimmied his way down, and danced over to Chewbacca, taking special care to show Chewbacca his backside. Chewbacca roared with appreciation. Yoda wiggled his butt for a moment before going back to the pole, climbing up and twirling his way down. He did a flip back up to the top, and an even more impressive series of twirls down... and then he danced back to Chewbacca, and stripped from his chaps... down to a leather thong.

Dooku started making Wookiee noises. It was like looking at a speeder wreck. He was horrified, but couldn't look away.

Sev had a holocamera.

"You're recording this?" Dooku's basso was almost a squeak.

"Yeah, I have plans for it."

Dooku buried his face in his hands, making a sound like a sob.

Obi-Wan was drinking all of the alcohol Threepio had on his serving tray. When he had finished the bottles, he stole Malak's unattended glass of whiskey and downed it.

"Why. Whyyyyyyy," Dooku wailed from behind his hands.

"Oh, Idis. Are you scared?" Sev patted him. "Should I get Teffi?"

"Who's Teffi?" Qui-Gon asked.

Dooku glared from between his fingers, and then he took his hands off his face and glared at Sev. "Severin Kira Yusanis."

"What?" Sev pulled out a holocard from his belt, and activated the gallery. A holopicture of Dooku sleeping, holding a stuffed blue tauntaun in his arms, rose from the card for everyone in the room to see. "Is this not the most goddamn adorable thing you have ever seen in your life?"

"Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww," Qui and Obi yelled in unison.

"Father, that's so sweet," Qui-Gon said.

Dooku's bitchface was like Sev had never seen before.

"See, there's no shame in sleeping with Teffi," Sev said. "I sleep with Big Bird, for fuck's sake."

"I... uh..." Malak looked off to the side, and then up. "Um... I sleep with a stuffed animal too."

"Yeah, he does." Reine tousled Malak's hair. "It's a stuffed dragon named Magellan."

"See? If Darth Malak, scourge of the ancient Sith Empire, can sleep with a stuffie... so can you." Sev kissed the tip of Dooku's nose.

Dooku continued glaring at Sev. His face was pink.

"Come on," Sev said, pulling Dooku to his feet. "You can spank me now."

You did that to incite a spanking, didn't you.

Well, that and I wanted you to stop being so embarrassed about Teffi, but I didn't want to blab my brother's personal business. Sev kissed Dooku's cheek as they made their way down the hall. But yes... I live to be spanked by you, milord. And that sexy death glare of yours. UNF.

Dooku shook his head, chuckling. Then he grabbed Sev by his collar and marched him towards the dungeon. It was all Sev could do to not hiss "Yesss...."

As it turned out, the dungeon was already occupied - Leia had Dennis's wrists and ankles in chains, and was bouncing on his cock, their screams and the wet suctioning, slapping sound of their fuck echoing down the hall. Even restrained, Dennis was working his hips as hard as he could, and Leia reached to grab his head so he could feast on her breasts. Watching Dennis lovingly lick her nipple before drawing it into his mouth, tugging it with his lips before suckling hard, made Sev's cock leap to attention, thinking about Dooku doing the same to his nipple, or doing that to Dooku.

Dooku groaned at the dungeon being used. "Fuck," he swore, which made Sev's eyebrows go up - he must really be frustrated.

Dooku picked Sev up and carried him to their bedroom suite, and then he Force threw Sev onto the bed and stripped as quickly as he could. All thoughts of Yoda's shenanigans a few moments ago were burned out of his mind by his lust for Sev in nothing but a pair of red lacy panties... recalling their Little-Red-Cape-and-Big-Bad-Wolf play days before.

Dooku climbed onto the bed and with a growl, he took the waistband of Sev's panties between his teeth, yanking down hard. With his teeth he pulled the panties off one leg, then the other, and then licked up Sev's right calf to his inner thigh, before taking Sev's cock into his mouth, swallowing down to the hilt. Sev gasped, clutching at Dooku's head.

"Idis," he moaned.

Dooku propped Sev's legs up... and then he slapped Sev's ass, as he continued sucking, harder and faster.

"Daddy..."

Dooku spanked Sev again, and again. He sucked and spanked, making Sev howl and writhe. After a few minutes Dooku took Sev's cock out of his mouth and licked the head, giving a few teasing licks around the head, before licking down the shaft. Licking down and up, up and down, before bathing Sev's balls with his tongue. Spanking and spanking. "Naughty boy."

"Yes, Daddy..."

"Teasing... naughty... slutty boy." He gave Sev's ass an especially hard smack.

"Daddy... Daddy... Daddy... please..."

"You are hardly in a position to ask me for anything, teasing me like you do, brat." Dooku licked the precum forming at the head of Sev's cock. "It's time to show you who's in charge here."

"Oh, fuck, yes...."

Dooku used the Force to tie Sev's wrists to the bed, and then he made Sev watch as he lubed his cock... stroking it, moaning as he teased himself.

"Oh, Daddy..." Sev whimpered a little.

"Yes, you like watching this, don't you, brat?" Dooku gave him a small smile. "Maybe I should just bring myself off... come all over you..."

Sev whimpered again, louder.

"...but it wouldn't be as satisfying as coming inside you. And making you lose control, feeling you come, feeling you clench around me." With that, Dooku pushed into Sev's ass.

On his knees, he propped Sev's legs on his shoulders, and began to thrust, rolling his hips at a moderate pace, as Sev grunted and groaned, loving the way Dooku's cock hit his prostate just right. Dooku's fingers played over Sev's chest and stomach and thighs, teasing him. "So beautiful," Dooku husked.

"Oh, Daddy. You're beautiful." Sev looked up at him adoringly. "I wish I could touch you."

Dooku sighed, and used the Force to unbind Sev. When Sev's wrists were free, his hands reached out to Dooku's thighs, stroking up from his hips over his sculpted abs, through his chest hair to his pecs. Sev's fingers began to rub his nipples, and Dooku groaned, shivering at his bondmate's touch.

"You're so sexy, Daddy. I love it when you take charge."

"I love you." Dooku took Sev's hands and kissed each finger and palm, a gesture that brought tears to Sev's eyes. He took Sev's hands in his and squeezed them. "I spent my entire life in winter, and your fire thawed my heart."

"I want to make you happy," Sev said. Then he bit his lower lip and said, "But not as much as I want to make you come."

Dooku growled, and leaned in to kiss Sev hard. Then his hand went to Sev's throat, grabbing it, with a finger through the O-ring on his collar - just enough for pressure, and to reinforce that feeling of Sev's life in his hands, but not enough to hurt him. Sev loved it, bucking his hips... raking his nails down over Dooku's chest. Dooku began to thrust harder, and Sev's nails raked over his back, which made Dooku bite his shoulder.

"Fuck me, Daddy," Sev moaned. "Fuck me hard, Daddy... claim my slutty ass with your big cock and your hot cum..."

Dooku groaned into Sev's shoulder, before his tongue laved the nipple, taking it between his teeth before he pulled it with his lips as Dennis had done to Leia's, suckling it hard. Sev screamed, raking Dooku's back again. He flailed as he cried out, "Yes, yes, more, Daddy, more..."

Dooku's tongue lapped at Sev's nipple and he sucked again, before turning his attention to the other. Sev's cries were getting louder, and Dooku found he was thrusting harder without meaning to... but he couldn't help it. And it felt so good... they were a perfect fit, Sev's wet hot velvet walls gripping him as he stroked Sev's prostate to a frenzy. "I want you," Dooku growled into Sev's chest.

"Oh, Daddy, I want you so bad... I want you to fucking fuck me so fucking hard..."

Dooku's hand pressed harder on Sev's throat and he thrust as hard as he could, which made Sev scream and buck his hips furiously, matching Dooku's rhythm. "YesyesyesyesDaddyDaddyDaddy..."

"Naughty boy." Dooku nipped Sev's lower lip before kissing him, and then he rose again, Sev's fingers playing over his chest and stomach as he held onto Sev's leg on his shoulder with one hand, and kept the pressure on Sev's throat with the other.

"Daddy..." Sev began to stroke his cock, and Dooku slapped Sev's hand away.

"Did I say you could touch yourself, brat?"

"No..." Sev pouted.

Dooku groaned and took Sev's cock into his hand, stroking it in rhythm with his thrusts. He could feel Sev getting close, and he was too. He stroked Sev's cock harder, and just before Sev could come, he stopped stroking and played with Sev's nipples, bringing his climb to orgasm back down. Sev practically shrieked with frustration, and Dooku smiled at him. "This is what bratty boys get," Dooku told him.

"Daddy, I need to come so bad..."

"Yes, you do." Dooku's index finger lightly caressed the head of Sev's cock, down the frenum, down the shaft. "But my brat needs to be shown who's in charge... you come when I decide you can come..."

"Fuck, fuck, fuck," Sev howled, and raked his nails over Dooku again.

Dooku growled, and grabbed Sev's wrists. He pinned Sev's wrists down, keeping Sev pinned as he fucked. The way Sev bit his lower lip, the desperate, hungry look on Sev's face... fuck, I need to come too.

He let go of one wrist and slowly ran his fingers down over Sev, from the pointy tip of his ear down the shell of his ear down his neck, over his throat, over one nipple down to the abs, up to the middle of the chest, over the other nipple, back down the stomach, down one hip and thigh, back up to the stomach, down the other hip and thigh, back up to the stomach, tracing the definition in Sev's abs, fingers playing between his nipples and his abs, before walking down to his leaking cock, collecting precum on his fingers... shoving his fingers in Sev's mouth. The way Sev sucked his fingers brought Dooku perilously close to that edge. He let go of Sev's other wrist and resumed stroking Sev's cock, as Sev continued sucking his fingers. Dooku worked Sev's cock as hard as he could, rattling it, making Sev whine around his fingers... and with another dozen thrusts, he was ready.

"Come with me."

Sev screamed with his mouth full, his body convulsing as he shot cum over Dooku's chest again and again and again. Dooku cried out as he spent into Sev's ass, coming hard. He collapsed on his bondmate and Sev held him as they shuddered together, gasping for breath.

At last they kissed.

"Darling brat," Dooku said, smiling between kisses.

Sev used the Force to bring Teffi onto the bed, and used the Force to hop Teffi along Dooku's back, before settling in between them. Teffi headbutted Dooku like one of the cats, and Dooku laughed.

"You're never too old to play," Sev told him, kissing the tip of his nose.

As Sev and Dooku finished, Leia climbed off Dennis and undid his restraints. "I could fuck you all night," Leia said, "but I told my new brothers I wanted some special 'family bonding' time with them."

Dennis nodded, and nibbled on Leia's lower lip before giving her one last smoldering kiss. "It's all right. I need to save some in the tank for Ben."

Leia chuckled. "Go make my son happy."

"I hope I made you happy."

"Very much." Leia gave Dennis a hug. "You took a difficult day and you made it fun. I appreciate you so much."

"I love you."

"I love you, too." They kissed, and then Leia gave Dennis's ass an affectionate swat.

Leia put on a silk robe she'd brought with her, and headed back to the banquet hall. Neryt and Reine were helping the serving droids clean up - Malak had already headed back to the villas, Yoda and Chewbacca had "retired" for the evening, as had Jocasta and Sifo to their villa, and Mace was spending the night in Irina's bedroom again. Finn and Poe had taken off before Dennis's lapdance. Reine let Leia know Qui and Obi were cuddling in the living room, waiting for her.

They were curled up together naked in front of the fireplace, in the sixty-nine position. Leia drank in the sight, and they heard her gasp of desire. She shucked her robe and walked towards them, and the men adjusted, so Qui-Gon ate Leia's pussy and she sucked Obi's cock, as Obi sucked Qui's cock. The three came together, and then they came up and kissed together, murmuring happily at the delicious taste of their three flavors combined as one.

Obi-Wan lay on his back and Leia straddled his cock, and rode him slowly, the two kissing as Qui went back and forth between them, taking a few thrusts into Obi's ass, then thrusting into Leia's ass. From behind, Qui's hands roamed over Leia's body and sometimes over Obi, and Obi caressed Leia with one hand, Qui with the other. Qui continued his rhythm, a dozen in one, a dozen in the other, slow and steady, until Leia urged him on faster, harder. She bit Obi's neck, and Obi thrusted harder into her cunt, whimpering gratefully as Leia pushed a nipple into her mouth.

Qui-Gon liked to take his time and keep the pace as slow as he could for as long as he could, but they were so worked up that soon the three were bucking together, one writhing mass of hot fucklust, one need. Leia came first, and the feeling of her cunt and ass contracting with her orgasm set the two men off, with Qui thrusting some of his cum into Leia's ass and giving the last of it to Obi-Wan.

"See, your brothers are taking care of you," Qui husked, kissing Leia's shoulder.

The three of them cuddled in a pile, petting and nuzzling and loving, safe and warm by the fire.

_

As Malak came into the group of lakeside villas, he noticed Han was sitting outside, smoking a bowl, looking at the stars. "Can I join you?" Malak asked.

Han had intended on just being alone, but, "Sure, why the hell not."

Malak sat with Han, and Han passed the pipe. Malak took a deep puff and then said, "Thank you."

"Wow, rough night?"

"Three words: Stripper Dancing Yoda."

Han made Wookiee noises. "Aw, fuck, kid, why did you have to tell me that?"

"To share my pain."

Han snorted. He took a puff, and passed the pipe back to Malak. "Yeah, I sure don't need any extra pain."

"Why, what's the matter?" Malak frowned. Then he said, "Uh... you're not jealous of Leia's other partners, are you?"

"Nah, that's not it. That doesn't bother me. We've had an open relationship from the beginning. Her appetites would kill me if she didn't have other partners." Han grinned. Then his grin became a scowl. "You really don't get it, do you?"

"Get what?" Malak passed the pipe back to Han.

Han took a long hit, and blew a series of smoke rings before he turned back to Malak and gave him a scathing look. "Today isn't just Leia's birthday. It's Luke's."

"...oh."

"Yeah. We miss him. A lot."

Before he could stop himself, Malak heard himself saying, "I miss Kylo."

Han made a small growl. The alcohol and the weed had loosened him up enough that his inhibitions were gone, and whether it was a good idea or not, the rant was finally here. "Yeah. Let me tell you about your best friend. He's the reason why Luke is gone."

Malak hung his head.

Han went on. "We know Luke is alive. In fact, it's actually worse that Luke is alive, out there, Force knows fucking where, we don't know where the fuck he is, except he got it into his head that he needed to find the first ever Jedi Temple, because he felt like he fucked up, he fell into this existential crisis and he needed answers and guidance and all that shit. And you know why he felt like he fucked up? Something he didn't even do. Something that best fucking friend of yours did."

Malak pinched the bridge of his nose. He had the urge to get up and walk away, but he got the sense Han was finally letting out something he'd been holding in for a very long time - something maybe only Leia had ever heard, before now.

"Since he was your best fucking friend, I assume he told you about how he and his then-girlfriend killed everyone at the New Jedi Order. Everyone but Luke."

"Yeah he did."

"And what kind of excuse did he give you for that? Why the fuck would you want to be friends with someone like that? The excuse must have been pretty damn good."

"He said he was being bullied. And he was afraid to let those kinds of people have power and influence the Galaxy... especially when he'd been seeing so many problems with the New Republic. He had Force visions of genocide. He said he was preventing it."

"Yeah." Han snorted. "Well, you know why Luke is still alive?"

"No, I don't."

"Luke is still alive because he happened to not fucking be there the day shit went down. He was on a mission. He was rescuing some kids, in fact. He came back and found ashes where the Jedi Temple stood." Han folded his arms. "You see, instead of waiting for Uncle Luke to get back from his mission, so he could maybe, you know, tell Luke about being bullied - because Luke damn well would have put a stop to that shit - he took matters into his own hands. He, in fact, waited for a time when Luke wasn't going to be there, so he wouldn't have to fight past Luke to get to the others... like a dirty fucking coward."

There was a time when Malak wouldn't have stood for anyone calling Kylo Ren a coward, but he sat there now, just listening.

"And Kylo has a long history of just deciding he's going to do what the fuck he wants to do, in the most extreme way possible, without maybe talking about it first and seeing if there's another option. I guaran-fucking-tee you that's what happened with this latest round of fuckery. It's pretty clear now he wants you to fight him because he thinks the resurgence of the Separatists will get the New Republic more interested in you all than the First Order. And he didn't even talk to you about this first to get your consent, did he?"

"No. He told me he was going to make me fight him again. I tried to talk him out of it, told him we'd be better off fighting together than fighting against each other. I didn't get a choice, clearly."

"So in case this weren't painfully fucking obvious, let me explain to you how you missing Kylo cannot and should not be compared to me missing Luke. Kylo does what he wants to do, even if it hurts people who love him - like his uncle does, like his best friend did. Luke tried his damnedest to help that kid. He would have been willing to do Force Sever on the bullies if it was that bad, make the bullies go into mandatory counseling, rather than see Kylo kill all of them. Yeah, we fucked up - we didn't have the same understanding of Force alignments that we have now, and Kylo should have been encouraged to find a constructive outlet for his anger rather than just suppressing it for the sake of the Light Side. If he'd had a pressure release valve with being able to go after actual murderers and all of that... maybe he wouldn't have exploded like he did. But we sure as fuck fucked up less than him murdering everyone at the New Jedi Order, even people who weren't bullying him. People who had been nice to him. Luke, on the other hand, if those bullies were trapped in a burning building, he would have found a way to get them out, and then told them to pay that kindness forward. Because that's how Luke is. Luke is the best man I've ever known... and I haven't seen him in years, because your fucking best friend made him feel like he was the worst fuckup the Galaxy had ever known, that he failed. Kylo doesn't think about the consequences of his actions, doesn't care how many people he hurts - you think he's shedding any tears over you right now? Even after Kylo burned his Temple to ash, Luke cared for him. Luke cried for him. Luke went on a quest to see how he could make things right. So don't you fucking sit here and tell me how you missing my son compares to me missing Luke Skywalker. Quite frankly, you're better off without Kylo. From everything I've heard about you, he doesn't deserve your friendship. If only you'd met Luke..." Han's voice trailed off.

"Well, I'm still a Dark Sider." Malak squared his shoulders. "As are you."

"And you cooperated with Light Siders at the New Force Order, yeah?"

Malak nodded. "And Dooku mentioned building a Temple here where he wants both Sith and Jedi perspectives shaping it."

"Yeah. That could have saved my son." Han frowned. "I think it's too late now."

Malak puffed and passed the pipe back to Han.

Then Han broke down crying. He felt embarrassed about it - he didn't cry easily, and he didn't let himself cry in front of people he didn't know well - but Malak took it in stride, and after a minute, put his arms around him. Han felt like pushing Malak off and yelling "I don't need your sympathy," but he didn't. He let himself be held.

And Malak started to cry, too.

When Reine rode her speeder down to the villas, she found Han and Malak sitting together, holding each other, crying. Her heart went out to Malak - she knew he was crying about Kylo. Again. And she was glad to see someone else comforting him - he had such a hard time reaching out to people, and after the rejection from his supposed best friend, he really needed the support.

She masked her presence in the Force, to not disturb them, and quietly made her way into their villa. Malak and Han continued to sit together, crying, rocking together, for a long time. They had broken the dam, and were riding the flood, cleansing the festering wounds. "I'm sorry," Malak told him. "I'm sorry..."

"It's not your fault my son is fucked up."

"He was like one of my brothers." In the non-incest way. "He helped me get OK with being a Force user... but I wasn't just friends with him out of gratitude, or things in common. I felt how lonely he was... how hurt he was... and I felt like I had to look out for him. To be the friend he never had."

That made Han break down crying all over again, strangely touched by that.

"Maybe I shouldn't have been. I feel like I enabled him to keep hurting people... I thought we were fighting injustice, together..."

"Ah, shit." Han cried on Malak's shoulder, and without thinking about it, Malak stroked his hair.

They cried a few minutes more, and then Malak said, "I heard there's bars open this hour in Carannia. You want to go have a few drinks? I know we already drank a bit at the party, but we need something to numb the pain."

Han nodded. "OK."

"I'll call a speeder cab, so neither of us have to drive."

A few hours later, Leia had returned to the Solos' villa and watched with surprise as Malak carried Han inside.

Malak looked off to the side. "You got any ice?" Leia saw the side of Malak's face was bruised.

"Oh, Force, what happened?"

"We were at a bar and some off-worlders assumed we were a gay couple and said something homophobic to us, and threatened us. We were drunk enough that we decided to show them why you don't casually threaten Sith."

"Gay-bashers, huh? That's not something you see every day in this Galaxy."

"No, I'm really glad that's an extreme minority opinion confined to the most remote backwater areas. Like Quelil, which is where I was from way back in the day, the first time I was Malak. Those people are... special."

Malak put Han down on the couch, and Han stirred. "We got em, right?" Han asked.

"We sure did. That Force lightning of yours was a nice touch."

Han grinned. "I wish you could have seen it," he slurred to Leia.

"We made them cry." Malak grinned too.

After Malak sat for awhile with tea and an icepack on his face, he checked the time and decided to go home. Before he left, Han said, "We should, um... hang out sometime."

"Yes, we should," Malak said. He waved to Leia, and then he was out the door.

"So they assumed you were a couple?" Leia smirked.

"We were kind of huggy and clingy." Han turned red.

"You would make a cute couple."

Han glared. "Could you not."

"I'm just saying..."

Chapter Text

The next day, Malak had a hell of a hangover - he slept late, enough that Reine had already left by the time he woke up, but there was a note on his pillow:

I saw you crying last night. Please know I love you.

-Reinie

It was lightly scented with her perfume, and he breathed it in, giving the paper a little kiss before he tucked it into his wallet - he was strangely sentimental like that.

After Malak had some coffee, he contemplated what to do with his day, and then he got a holocall from Han.

"Hey," Malak said.

"Hey there. I just... wanted to see if you're OK, and say thank you for getting me home in one piece last night."

"Well, you did a pretty good job of holding your own."

"Still."

Malak ran a hand through his hair. "You want to do some lightsaber sparring? It's a good idea for you to cross-train against different lightsaber forms and I use a combination of Ataru and Juyo as my form."

"I have no idea what the hell that means, but OK. I'll let Sev know. You want to come over? We can smoke up in the mancave afterwards."

"I'll be there in a few."

Han was waiting outside the Solos', and Malak Force threw him as soon as he arrived. "What the hell was that for?" Han asked as he hit the ground.

"If/when you fight Kylo, he's gonna come in fighting," Malak said. "None of this froo-froo Makashi salute bullshit." He Force threw Han again. When Han tried to get up, Malak let Force lightning spark from his fingertips, and Han shielded himself just in time.

Malak finally ignited his lightsaber, and came at Han hard, swinging with the fast fury the Juyo form was known for. Han met him thrust for thrust, blocking, and then he attempted to Force throw Malak. Malak felt the push in the Force, and he shielded it before he could fall, and then pushed back at Han. Han shielded against the throw this time, and then Han swung at Malak with one hand, Force lightning coming from the other. Malak absorbed it.

"Not bad," Malak commented. "Just remember there's no autoregen here, no Restorers, so if I kill you, you die for real." Malak's lightsaber swung at Han's throat.

Han's lightsaber blocked just in time, and then Han made a feint, moving towards Malak's left hip, and just as Malak went to block the thrust, Han swung lower and got Malak in the knee. Malak went down and yelled "Son of a BITCH."

Han held his lightsaber in the "kill" position over Malak's head, and then Malak Force threw Han as hard as he could, sending a non-lethal but still painful dose of Force lightning after that.

"Motherfuck," Malak said, looking at the exposed wound through the tear in his black pants.

"How bad is it?" Han asked.

"'Tis only a flesh wound," Malak quipped, and then he said, "Nothing a bacta patch won't fix. Like skinning your knee as a kid. But still." He smiled at Han. "Good job."

Han Makashi saluted before he turned his lightsaber off. Malak got the sense Han's Makashi salute was with the exact same intent as Sev's - rather than a show of respect to one's opponent, it was a polite form of giving the finger. His smile turned into a knowing grin.

Finn and Poe came out of the Solos'. "Hey," Malak said to them.

"We just got done sparring," Han informed them.

"Yeah, I need to get back on that," Finn said.

And then, Poe stormed over to Malak and kicked him in the torso, kneeing him in the chin, while he was down. "YOU SON OF A BITCH!" Poe screamed at Malak.

Finn grabbed Poe as Poe's fists flailed, and then Malak calmly Force threw Poe onto the ground.

"What's going on here?" Finn yelled.

Malak gave a deep sigh as Poe glared at him. "You're remembering, aren't you?"

Poe snarled, and spat.

"Oh." Finn looked at Poe. "You are?"

"Remembering what?" Han scowled.

Malak sighed again. He gestured to Poe. "Carth Onasi, everyone."

"You. Fucking. Piece of Sith." Poe growled.

Malak sat up, rubbing his chin, and then he looked Poe in the eye. "All of us round these parts have a history with each other, and the Force decided that meant we had some unfinished business to work out... as well as a greater threat we had to assemble for."

"The only unfinished business I have is kicking your worthless ass," Poe said.

"Hey, that's my brother-in-law," Finn said.

"And my friend," Han said.

"Yeah? So if you guys remember who and what Malak was, why the fuck are you defending him? Huh?" Poe folded his arms, scowling. "You're worse than Kylo Ren."

"That might be stretching it," Malak said. "That might be stretching it quite a lot."

Poe snorted.

Malak took a deep breath. "OK, look. Poe. Carth. There's some things about back then that you don't know."

Poe waited.

"I know you - Carth - lost your wife with the destruction of Telos IV." Malak looked down at the ground, and then he looked back at Poe. "And I'm really sorry for that."

"Sorry? Sorry? You destroyed a fucking planet, and you just say 'sorry' like it's the same as showing up fifteen minutes late for a funeral?"

"Look, man, I'm doing the best I can with this extremely awkward moment." Malak scowled. Then his facial expression softened a bit. "What do you know about the Sith Emperor Valkorion?"

"Uh... haven't even heard of him?"

"Figures."

"So what the fuck does this Volkswagen guy -"

"Valkorion."

"-what you said - have to do with anything?"

"Valkorion was, and still is, the most powerful Sith who ever lived. And he had a bit of a grudge against me and Revan back in the day because of our Empire. So he started... doing some things." Malak folded his hands. "I gave the orders for Saul Karath to destroy Telos IV because it was infected."

A pause, and then Poe said, "What do you mean, infected?"

"Valkorion engineered a virus that caused dead corpses to reanimate... and begin eating the living. Who would be infected when they were bitten, and... you get the picture. Infected people were trying to escape and go elsewhere... which would have of course brought the virus elsewhere. If I hadn't ordered the destruction of Telos IV, none of us would be here right now. The entire Galaxy would have been wiped out, or at least a good chunk of it. There was no option for quarantine or decontamination, with how fast everything went to hell." Malak ran a hand through his hair. "It's the same reason why I issued the orbital bombardment of Taris."

"You couldn't just have killed the undead -"

"Again, there was no other option than to do what I did. One of my... Force gifts... is sometimes, I can look at different scenarios and see how things would have gone if a different path was taken, and unfortunately any timeline that wasn't me destroying Telos IV and Taris resulted in the infection of the Galaxy. I had to, in fact, fix the timeline more than once - not something I can always do, and sometimes trying to fix it makes it worse - but because this was the only option that didn't result in mass extinction, yes, I destroyed worlds. It didn't feel good at the time. But if I seemed fairly unrepentant about it when we met aboard my ship the Leviathan, it's because when you make those kinds of decisions, and you make them for those kinds of reasons, you can either allow yourself to get hung up on the guilt and have a nervous breakdown agonizing over every single life, or you can accept you had no other options and you did what had to be done, and, as importantly, accept that as a leader these are the kinds of decisions you have to make, and have to make with confidence, because nobody trusts a leader who starts cracking under pressure. History vilifies me and paints me as some sort of corrupt warmonger who loved the power. They don't understand - with great amounts of power comes great amounts of bullshit you have to put up with. There was not a single day that went by, when I was Sith Emperor, that my job was not a complete fucking headache because of situations like Telos IV, and Taris, and having to stay on top of Valkorion's other fuckery, all the while dealing with the Republic who couldn't be arsed to get involved when the Mandalorians were scorching the Galaxy but suddenly a 'fallen' Jedi decides to make a decent government and they can't have any of that, because it makes them look bad you see, and they think mind-raping my best friend to use as a weapon against me was an acceptable thing to do."

Malak folded his arms and went on. "When I lay dying, I told you who Revan was. I didn't just tell you that for the information in and of itself, I told you that so you'd understand the Republic you served had done to Revan what they did. I'd made the offer, before the final battle, for you to join me. And I truly meant it. You were a good man, a good soldier, and I would have been proud to have you as part of my military. You could have seen your son, Dustil, who willingly joined the Sith and was consistently at the top of his class at the Sith Academy. But you still kept refusing, thinking I was completely evil because all you knew was Republic propaganda - well, you needed to know what your beloved Republic had done. And now, here we are, four thousand years later, and the Republic is still a fucking mess. But hey, I'm the bad guy, right?"

"So how do you justify the Star Forge?" Poe sneered.

"Oh, that's easy. That was being reserved for the people who did what they did to Revan, because if you think mind-raping people to completely forget their current identity and brainwashing them into being something else is OK, then maybe you shouldn't be given the peace of death and the chance to reincarnate and do it all over again to some poor bastard in your next life. Unfortunately, any Revan that returned to the Dark Side, or had never really quite left, went above and beyond that purpose and threw Jedi in the Star Forge for the sake of throwing Jedi in the Star Forge. And yes, because of that, using the Star Forge is one of my regrets about that period of time - the Star Forge is truly evil, and I intend on destroying it."

"You should destroy yourself," Poe spat.

Malak set his jaw. "I'm not a saint. I didn't do everything perfectly. I'm a killer, because some situations require one, and I'm very good at it. But I'm not the monster you think I am, either. If there had been any way to avoid destroying Telos IV and Taris, it would have been done. There was not. And I'm sorry that Carth-you lost your wife, before you took up with female Revan. But I wasn't going to kill myself to make up for your loss, and I'm still not. Whether you like it or not, the Force reincarnated me, and some of why I'm here, right now, is precisely because of the debt I owe, so I can work on making it right. I was Kylo Ren's second-in-command and his right-hand man for close to two of the three years I was in the First Order. While it turns out there was a lot of stuff he was keeping from me, what I do know about the First Order as an insider, and about Kylo himself, can be used against them, which is why Dooku made me the head of the Separatist military. I am of more use to you alive than dead, but if you want to be a selfish fuck who can't see past that, I believe there's a saying about how those who fight monsters should take care they don't turn into a monster themselves."

Poe looked down.

Malak got up, and then he held out his hand to Poe, to help him up off the ground. Poe took it, and there was a moment when Malak thought Poe was going to punch him, but he didn't.

"You can continue to hate me for what happened four thousand years ago, and you're entitled to feel how you feel," Malak said, "but understand, if you get in my way, I'll kill you. You and I have a troubled past history, but here and now, we both have the agenda of stopping the First Order from taking over the Galaxy. You can either let me do my job, or I can send you back to Carth Onasi's dead wife, and I'll do it because you're fucking with the fate of the entire Galaxy, and I will not lose any sleep about your dead sorry ass what-so-fucking-ever because I warned you and if you're stupid enough to not heed that warning, that's what you get and that's what you deserve to get. It's that simple."

"Dude, that's my boyfriend," Finn told Malak.

"Yes, thank you, Captain Obvious. I don't care if you and him had ten children together. Keep your puppy on a leash, or I'll shoot him." Then Malak turned on his heel, and walked towards the Solos' villa, to step inside.

Han followed, looking a bit sheepish.

_

Neryt gave Reine another swoop riding lesson, and when that was finished, she had her first Force lesson with Dennis.

Dennis started off by asking her some questions to determine where she was at - since she was already in the habit of using telekinesis and occasionally Force Persuade, and she had a strong intuitive sense with moments of full precognition, he was relieved; it would be easier to work with her than if she were suppressing her Force abilities, like he had done until a couple of short years ago.

"I personally am in the grey middle of the Force, and my Sith title, Darth Liminus, was given because of my being in that grey area," Dennis told her. "But I am a darker shade of grey. My Force powers are strongest when they are fueled by intense emotions like fear and anger. People who lean towards the Light Side of the Force find themselves better able to access the Force when they're in a place of calm. Neither way is better, it's just how someone is wired, but I'm guessing you're probably on the darker end of grey yourself."

Neryt nodded.

"So to get you going, I have to be the bad guy here and rip open an old wound of yours." Dennis frowned. "Close your eyes, and I want you to think about the Cleansing of Serenno. How it felt, when you saw what you saw... and in the last moments of your life, as Darth Vader prepared to kill you."

"Really?" Neryt scowled.

Dennis nodded. "When I was facing execution aboard the Finalizer, Vader was there. It's pretty apparent he's First Order now, which means there is a very real chance your path may cross with his again. You've said you've been focusing on your martial arts training the last four years since your resurrection because you want to be able to fight if shit hits the fan. Well... shit is hitting the fan, Neryt. We are about to go to war. The fear and rage that he made you feel, when he forced noble Houses to kill their eldest male or all be tortured and killed, when he killed your siblings in front of you, when he killed you slowly and painfully and made your mother watch... what he didn't know was that he had awakened something in you, that you can use as a weapon against him, and people like him. But only if you let yourself feel it. So close your eyes." He took Neryt's hands. "Let me see what you saw... feel what you felt... guide you through the darkness."

"You're not gonna like it, Dennis."

"I know."

Neryt took a deep breath, and closed her eyes.

When she is dragged off the ship, she can barely walk. Every time she falls on her knees, one of the soldiers escorting her shocks her with a prod, until she learns to hold back her fall, her knees shaking.

One of Clan Fett's own turned them in - she had been outside hanging laundry on the clothesline, when they came for her, shooting her with a tranq dart, binding her before she blacked out. When she woke up, she was on a ship. They made a detour, for a doctor-type-person to verify who she was, who her mother was... before the ship brought them to Serenno, someplace she'd heard her mother talk about, but had never seen.

In the week it took them to get there, she was starved. She was sometimes given water, but that was all. She was not allowed to visit the 'fresher. She, her mother, Isha, and her mother and father's three elder children, all grown, have been laying in their own piss and shit for a week, and this bothers her even more than the ache in her stomach, the weakness in her body. She knows she is going to die, and she at least could die with dignity, not like this. It's even worse with her mother.

After being shock-prodded every time she's fallen to her knees, Neryt is finally pushed down to her knees by Vader himself, just before he walks off to supervise the rest of the show. Every noble House of Serenno is there - the eldest son has brought the eldest male. In retaliation for her uncle's rebellion, Serenno is being punished - forced to sacrifice the eldest male of each House, or have the entire House tortured and killed. The Counts and their sons try to be composed about it, but Neryt can see the fear in their eyes, she can feel the grief and rage. One by one, the Counts fall, and blood spills on Serennian soil. Their sons are then forced to bend the knee to Vader, and acknowledge him as their Master. It makes Neryt want to spit. As weak as she is, she struggles against her bonds, useless.

Vader turns back to the surviving family of Count Dooku. His nephew Adan - Neryt's elder half-brother - has gone into hiding, but Vader is "satisfied enough" with the sister and her children. Vader walks before them slowly, back and forth, considering.

Palpatine gloats at their condition. "My, but the mighty of House Dooku have fallen. Stinking of your own filth."

Neryt feels another surge of humiliation, but it's even worse for Irina, who was always so put together and stylish even after she left Serenno. Irina sets her jaw, refusing to cry for him.

It doesn't last long.

Vader kills Isha first, with several blasts of Force lightning. Isha screams in horrific pain each time. With the last blast, he is completely charred - some of his bones are showing. Neryt throws up on herself.

Vader lets his Force energy recharge, and decides to kill Trina and her two brothers with his lightsaber. He cuts off their arms at the shoulders first, making them feel the pain of severed limbs, before he beheads them.

Irina is begging for Neryt's life. She actually offers herself to Palpatine as a comfort woman, "do anything you want with me, just please don't kill my daughter..."

Palpatine laughs at her. Vader smacks Irina in the face.

Neryt spits at him. "Demagolka," she swears. "Ori'jagyc hut'uun." Monster. Bullying coward.

Vader turns his attention to Neryt, and Neryt finds herself hovering six feet off the ground, beginning to choke.

Vader speaks to her through that helmet. "I can feel the Force in you. It seems almost a shame to kill you. But you will grow up to be like your uncle if I don't."

"Please don't kill her," Irina pleads. "Please. I will do anything, just please, she's only twelve..."

Palpatine shoots her with Force lightning - not enough to kill her, just enough to make her suffer.

Just before Neryt can asphyxiate, she drops to the ground.

"She has begged enough for the child's life that we should make this one suffer the most," Palpatine tells Vader.

Palpatine cuts off her fingers, one at a time, while Neryt screams and sobs. Then Palpatine shocks her with Force lightning. It is the most painful thing Neryt has ever felt. As she lays on the ground twitching, she feels the Force gathering around Vader, and she braces herself. Vader strikes her with Force lightning, then, like being in a furnace that is driving nails through every inch of her skin. It's getting harder to breathe. She can't see anymore.

One of them begins torturing her lekku, and just her lekku, exquisitely sensitive that they are. Then they are cut off, one at a time. "These will make a pretty trophy," she hears Palpatine say, before her montrals are cut off and she can't hear anything.

There is another flash that even blinded, she can see past the blindness, and she feels like she is exploding, until she stops feeling. Aran Fett picks her up, and she is somehow back on Mandalore, with what looks like a lot of Fetts drinking and carousing - Fett ancestors.

"We will avenge this," Jango Fett says to them. "Oya manda, but they will pay for what they have done."

Neryt was shaking... and so was Dennis.

Dennis opened his eyes first - they were blurry with tears. He felt sick.

Neryt finally opened her eyes... and they were blazing orange-gold.

Dennis had assembled a target range, with coffee cans, much like he'd done for Leia on Arcturus. Before Dennis could tell her "Hit these targets," he watched as Force lightning blasted from Neryt's hands, exploding every single can, exploding the barrels the cans were set on top of.

Then Neryt dropped to her knees, screaming through clenched teeth, sobbing.

Dennis dropped down beside her, and put his arms around her. She sobbed on him, and he cried with her. At last they looked at each other, and Neryt's eyes were back to the usual dark brown of her Dooku blood.

"I'm so sorry that happened," Dennis said.

He held Neryt close as she fell apart, crying harder. He rocked her in his arms, and she leaned on him, letting herself cry, raging and seething with pain she'd held back since her resurrection.

Finally Dennis cupped Neryt's chin in his hand, and he said to her, "You were very brave through the end."

"Brave would have been if I could do then, what I did just now."

"No. You were twelve. You were starved for a week. You could barely walk. Even if you had the command of the Force that you have now, you'd be too weakened to do much with it."

Neryt looked down at the ground. Dennis gestured for Neryt's eyes to meet his.

"When's the last time you talked to your Mandalorian relations?" Dennis asked.

"It's been a few months. I was planning on going to Mandalore for my seventeenth birthday." Neryt folded her arms. "Uncle Jango was resurrected, and he offered to have me join his warband."

"Resurrected? By the Restorers? That means he's at least mildly Force-sensitive."

"Yeah, he doesn't like having that brought up." Neryt pursed her lips. "He's the Mand'alor now, and the Mando'a are a bit wary of Force users."

"So he is to Mandalore what your uncle Idis is about to become to Serenno."

"Yes."

"I think it's worth reminding both your uncles of that fact."

Dennis pulled Neryt up, and he said, "I was going to work with you on other Force skills today, but you... um... exceeded my expectations."

Neryt gave a small smile. "Uncle Idis said he was at the top of his class at the Jedi Academy."

"Yeah. I can see that runs in the family. Shit." Dennis sighed. "You don't really need a teacher so much as you need a coach, I think. I can still do that for you."

"You definitely helped me bring out... whatever the hell that was."

Dennis nodded. He checked the time. "My kids are with their therapist - my cousin Ari - and if I leave now, I'll be a little early to pick them up, but I could grab a coffee while I wait. Do you want to come with me into the city?"

"Yes, thank you." Neryt bit her lower lip. "I don't want to be alone right now."

Dennis took her hand. Their eyes held, and then they walked to Dennis's speeder bike. They flew to the palace in silence, and then after they changed vehicles to a speeder car, Dennis put on a music station. Neryt found herself leaning on him on the trip into Carannia, and he let her.

_

Sev and Malak had decided it was time to finally see their long-lost cousin Ari, and Dooku had expressed interest in meeting more of the family, so after a few calls, it was arranged for Ari Camwyr to come back with Dennis, Neryt, and the kids, for a family dinner.

The family dinner was attended by everyone in the banquet hall, and was a much tamer affair than Leia's birthday party the prior evening. Malak had smoked with Han before they arrived at the palace, and Sev was relieved that Malak wasn't in the surly mood he'd been in since arriving on Serenno.

Ari was older than the triplets by several years. He was half-Corellian, half-Echani, and so he did not have the pointy ears the triplets had inherited from their Alameenian mother. Ari stood approximately six feet tall, with wavy medium brown hair to his shoulders, grey-blue eyes, and a closely trimmed brown beard that framed a charming smile. He preferred to dress in blue and grey, in the simple, elegant style common to Serenno; he had the same lean-muscled build of Dennis and Severin, and through what was visible from the ends of his sleeves and the neck of his shirt, he was a little on the hairy side like Dennis as well. Most surprising for a cousin of the Yusanis triplets - he had a Coruscanti accent instead of a Corellian accent, and refined manners in keeping with Serennian culture, right down to an appreciation for fine Serennian wine.

"So what brought you to Serenno?" Dooku asked Ari, curious.

"I had traveled the Galaxy for some years, both before and after my schooling. Serenno is beautiful, the culture is rich with philosophers and writers and artists and musicians, with art studios and museums on every street in Carannia, and the people are courteous and kind - after growing up in the wrong part of Coronet City, being raised by the same people who raised my cousins and subjected to the same horror, I felt like I had finally found someplace safe and peaceful. Someplace that resonated with my soul. So I decided to stay for awhile... and then I renewed my visa... and then I renewed it some more... and finally I applied for citizenship." Ari looked at Dennis then. "It seems that I wasn't just brought here of my own accord, though. The Force knew our paths would cross again, here."

"I'm glad they did." Dennis smiled.

"Most of my therapy clients are off-worlders who've come to Serenno for the same reason I did," Ari went on. "The Living Force is strong here. This is a place of healing. A place of rest, for those who need it."

Dooku nodded. "It's why I returned after I left the Jedi Order."

"Serenno is precious," Ari said. "It is very precious indeed."

"I will be made its Regent in a matter of days," Dooku informed him. "You're welcome to attend the coronation with the rest of the family."

"I would like that." Ari nodded. "And I thank you for the welcome into this family."

After dinner, Dennis gave Ari a tour of the palace grounds, and Neryt walked Ben and the kids back to their villa. Sunset was fading into twilight, and Ben marveled at the sky.

"I really get what Ari said," Ben said. "The most beautiful sunsets I've ever seen are here."

Neryt nodded. "Serenno's lovely." She frowned a little. "I was going to go back to Mandalore for my seventeenth birthday and join my uncle Jango's warband... but I seem to have more of a reason to stay now."

"Well, the kids would miss you, right?" Ben tousled Owen and Lysa's hair, and they nodded.

Neryt smiled at them, and then she smiled up at Ben, and Ben's breath caught. He felt his face burning. Fuck, why does she have to be so attractive. Ben managed a little smile.

"Come have ice cream," Lysa told her.

"Hey, I didn't even say you could have ice cream." Ben poked Lysa's shoulder, and then poked her nose.

"You know we're having ice cream, Dad."

Ben laughed, and so did Neryt. "In a little while," Ben told the kids. First, once they arrived at the villa, Neryt helped Ben get them in their pajamas, and then the four sat on the floor, working with the plastine building block set. Dennis and Ari found them like that when they walked in, and Ben felt sheepish, and Ari assured him, "Playing is very therapeutic." To demonstrate this, he got down on the floor with them and after inquiring what the children were building, he began to help.

"We were gonna have ice cream, Daddy," Lysa told Dennis.

Dennis went to the kitchen and dished out ice cream for everyone, and used the Force to carry the bowls in and pass them out.

Then Dennis said, "A toast," lifting up his spoon. All eyes were on him, and he said, "To paths converging to heal the damage done and set things right."

"Salu," Neryt said.

Ben shoved his spoon in Dennis's mouth and then kissed Dennis with a mouthful of ice cream. The kids giggled, and Neryt gave a little wistful sigh... and then she noticed Ari was also giving Dennis a wistful look.

Holy shit, does Dennis know his cousin likes him? Neryt bit her lower lip. I wonder if they have a past history too.

She still didn't know how to broach the topic of her past history as Mission with Revan and Meetra... and with Juhani, for that matter. She was starting to get the feeling that Reine was flirting with her, but she wasn't sure.

One thing was for sure: her vibrator was going to get put to good use when she went home. Every time Ben and Dennis kissed in front of her it sent her libido surging, and she could use the stress relief after this afternoon.

_

Reine, Malak, Han, and Leia walked back to the villas together, and as Malak headed inside, Reine told him, "I'll be in shortly, honey."

Reine walked to the Solos' villa and caught Leia just before she could go inside. "Hey," Reine said.

"Hey yourself." Leia smiled. "What's up?"

Reine took a deep breath. "I want you and Han to seduce my husband."

Leia's jaw dropped.

Reine went on. "I can tell through our Force bond he's attracted to both of you... and I've seen the way both of you look at him... and like you and Han, Malak and I have had an open relationship from the beginning, we just haven't... gotten around as much. But there's a girl I'm interested in, and I'd feel better about pursuing things with her if I knew Malak was also being taken care of... but he's afraid to initiate things with you guys. I guess because of Kylo, though now that that's a non-issue, I think it's because he's afraid of rejection."

"Malak? Afraid?"

"You'd be surprised. Just because he was a feared military leader in the First Order doesn't mean he doesn't have his vulnerabilities... and his heart is one of them. He's a good man, and he deserves love... and I can tell you and Han would be good to him."

"Well," Leia said, "I won't lie, I've entertained a few thoughts about that delicious husband of yours, but... a lot of sex is psychological. Malak doesn't seem like the kind of person you can just go up to and say, 'Hey nice boots, let's fuck.'"

"No, he's not."

"So it may be some days yet. Han and I will think of a plan."

Reine nodded. Then she flashed a mischievous grin. "He's a damn good lay. You won't be disappointed."

"Dennis has given me that vote of confidence as well."

"Nnnf." Reine bit her lower lip, mental images of Dennis and Malak making love flashing through her mind, making her cunt twinge. "Well, on that note, I'll go home and seduce my husband."

"OK. And you know, if you ever want to have tea, talk open marriage stuff... my door is open."

"Thanks." Reine looked down, and then she said, "You don't seem as bad as Kylo said you were."

"Well... I definitely made mistakes, with him... but I imagine he's painted quite a vicious picture of me."

"He really has. To be honest, if this were six months ago and I were still loyal to Kylo, I'd have killed both you and Han myself... but after finding out how much we were lied to and manipulated, it's hard to know what to believe, of what he told us about you guys. And in any case, I know you still love him."

"Even after everything, if he came here tomorrow and wanted to leave it all behind and start fresh with us, I would forgive him." Leia frowned. "He's still my son."

"I hope he doesn't use those sympathies against you," Reine said.

That hung there in the air like an ominous note, and then Reine said, "Good night," and walked home.

Chapter Text

Over the next few days, Dooku prepared for his swearing-in as Regent, and over holomail and holocalls began to coordinate with other government officials in the D'Astan Sector, for a business meeting regarding the new Commonwealth of Independent Systems, the day after the coronation. Sometimes Sev sat on his lap while he worked on composing holomails and various speeches, in his study. And in his study, Dooku had set up a map of the Galaxy, covering an entire table, with standing tiles bearing the First Order logo on the territories in the Unknown Regions and Outer Rim known to be held by the First Order, standing tiles bearing the New Republic logo on the territories belonging to them, and a standing tile bearing the Separatist logo on the Serenno system.

The day before Dooku's coronation, he had several messages to respond to right away, so after he and Sev woke up and meditated together, they decided they would take breakfast in his study.

Dooku had been even more serious than usual as of late, enough that his sister, niece, and nephew worried about him, so Neryt brought breakfast to them - she thought it was a nicer touch than a serving droid - and she asked, "Can I stick around for a bit?"

"There's not much of interest here," Dooku said, "but I don't see why not."

Dooku was engrossed in typing, making sure to choose the right words for maximum impact, and was engrossed enough in his thoughts that he was able to drown out the sounds of Severin and Neryt chattering. Until he was finished with breakfast and drinking coffee, and noticed something out of the corner of his eye - Severin and Neryt playing with the map. He had to do a double take. Neryt collected brightly colored pony figurines, with manes and tails that tended to either complement or contrast the color of the pony's body, and each pony bore a different marking towards their rump. Neryt and Sev were attacking the First Order pieces with approximately a dozen ponies from her collection.

"Take that, you son of a bitch," Neryt said.

"I fart in your general direction," Sev said in a falsetto, putting a pink pony's balloon-marked rear end on a First Order piece and making a fart noise as the rump rubbed back and forth against it.

"WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING?" Dooku bellowed.

Sev blinked slowly, and then he said, "Well... I suppose you could consider this a form of Sith ritual? A form of sympathetic magic?"

"THAT. IS. NOT. SITH. RITUAL."

"Isn't the whole point of being a Sith making your own rules and 'do as thou wilt' and all that shit? It's Sith ritual if I say it is."

Dooku bitchfaced. Sev stuck his tongue out at him.

Then Dooku said, "Do not play with that map. The First Order pieces in particular are arranged per their exact coordinates as we know them via the intel we have. If you moved them by even a centimeter, I am going to have to go back into my files to determine where exactly to relocate them."

"Ah, shit." Sev ran a hand through his hair. "We knocked a few over."

Dooku glared harder.

"I'll... um... excuse myself." Neryt gave a guilty grin, and then she hurried out of the study.

Sev took a deep breath. He looked at his shoes, and then he looked at Dooku.

Dooku continued glaring at Sev, to the point where Sev felt a little unnerved, and he usually thought it was sexy when Dooku made that face.

Dooku finally closed his eyes, and pinched the bridge of his nose. "Child, do you not take anything seriously?"

"I take a lot of stuff seriously." Because of the tension, Sev defaulted to a wisecrack. "For example, Parry Hotter fandom."

Dooku's eyes shot open and he gave Sev another death glare. Sev's grin quickly dissolved into a small frown.

"Severin," Dooku said, "I don't know if this has occurred to you, but we are entering a life or death situation here."

"You think I'm not aware of that? What, you think I was dragged on board the Finalizer for some sort of fucking surprise party? Except the surprise was being told to execute my brother? You think I've had my head up my ass this entire time that we've been figuring out the First Order planned to betray the Knights of Ren all along and force us to go to war with them so the return of CIS will get the Republic all riled up? For fuck's sake, Tyranus, just because I make jokes about stuff doesn't mean I'm fucking oblivious. It's precisely because of how deadly serious everything is that I act like this, because we all need a little levity now and again." Sev folded his arms. "Even you."

"There is a time and a place," Dooku said. "Playing with this map, which you surely knew was not there just as a decoration... very much not appropriate."

"I knew it wasn't there as just a decoration, but I also figured it would be easy enough to put back together."

"Did you."

It was just two little words, but they, and the tone they were delivered in, set Sev on defensive edge. "...Do you fucking think I just do things without considering the consequences of their actions?"

Dooku said nothing.

Sev got angrier. "I assure you if that was the case, I wouldn't have suppressed my Force abilities as long as I did, and struggled with my Dark Side alignment like I did, and sometimes still do. I wouldn't give a fuck. I'd be a lot worse than I am. This joking that you see is a mask, that hides a man who's been through a lot of shit, has experienced a lot of pain, and understands the power of a good laugh when everything feels hopeless. And I thought you knew that, considering how many months we've been together now, and the virtue of our Force bond. You knew, before you and I ever made love for the first time, how I am. Hell, you named me Darth Levitas. You know I like getting a rise out of you. But I know there's a line. There is a difference between me pushing your buttons and deliberately setting out to hurt or anger you. So you getting your knickers all in a wad like you think I'm just this asshole who doesn't give a shit... I don't know what to tell you."

"Let me get this straight... you are the one who messed up my war board with your shenanigans... and you presume to lecture me about how I should feel or how I should perceive you."

Sev rolled his eyes and huffed. "You know what... forget it." He put a hand on his hip. "So, since you are so invested with this life or death business, do you have anything I can do to be useful, as opposed to just hanging around like your lapdog?"

Dooku wanted to reply with You sitting on my lap did provide a therapeutic purpose, but he was too angry to be reassuring at the moment. "I have an assignment for you."

"OK."

"I'd meant to ask you to do this sooner, and have been sidetracked with everything going on. When we lived on Arcturus, I noticed that sometimes you would draw and color on your tablet."

Sev looked off to the side. "I'm not, like, a professional artist..."

"Well, you must have at least a modicum of artistic skill or eye for design. To that end... I need a logo for the Commonwealth. I do not want to use a logo exactly the same as the old logo, while the old logo can be incorporated in the new in some way, and this is for the same reason that we're calling the new Separatist movement a Commonwealth and not a Confederacy. I don't want people making the mistake that we're doing things exactly as they were done before. Ideally, I would like both a logo and a flag design - the logo should be simple, the flag can be a little more elaborate but not garish in excessive detail - but I need them both by this evening, so I can have appropriate items made for the ceremony tomorrow."

"Ugh, yeah, you really should have told me you needed this before now."

Dooku's lips quirked. "I do in fact know you quite well, and one of the observations I have made about you is that when you are determined enough, things get done. You certainly had practice with this when I gave you writing assignments as an apprentice."

Sev snorted. "Fuck those writing assignments, man."

"So, please, create a logo and flag design for the Commonwealth."

"That's all?"

"That's all."

Sev walked out of the study, and Dooku sighed once he was gone - he wished he'd stopped Sev and defused the tensions a bit with a hug and a kiss. He hoped Sev would somehow understand he was more on edge than usual and what had happened was a simple misunderstanding that could be worked out.

Sev's first stop upon leaving the study was to duck into the 'fresher and splash cold water on his face, trying not to cry.

_

Before Neryt's appointment to give Reine another swoop riding lesson, she decided to go on her usual walk around the estate. It was a perfect day - the temperatures were mild, and Carannia was in the peak of its fall foliage, colors blazing beneath a blue sky filled with puffy white clouds. The apples in the orchard were in season, and Neryt thought she would pick a basket for herself - apple slices were a convenient snack when she spent her evenings working on Parry Hotter fanfiction. Lately her stories had been smuttier than usual, where Parry and Ran acted out increasingly torrid fantasies about Ben and Dennis, and her writing sessions were longer, wanting to get the sex just right. She'd never had sex, but she'd seen the Holonet, and in fact had done quite a bit of "research" as of late; that "research" had paid off in good reviews.

As she made her way into the apple orchards, she gave a little gasp as her favorite fantasy played out right before her eyes, better than anything she'd watched on the Holonet.

The kids were at a therapy session, and Ben and Dennis had taken the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful weather and have a picnic in the orchard. They took turns feeding each other, playfully and sensually, and soon the stolen kisses between bites got longer and deeper, and they were hungry for much more than their picnic lunch. Neryt was just in time to see Ben and Dennis naked on the blanket they'd spread out, Dennis laying on his back, clutching Ben's head with a moan as Ben took Dennis's cock in his mouth. Neryt ducked behind a tree and watched, trembling, from the side angle that let her see everything - Dennis's cock in Ben's mouth, the adoring look in Ben's eyes as he sucked him slowly, Ben's fingers playing with Dennis's balls and then his ass, as Dennis arched his back, moaning louder and louder.

Fuck. Neryt knelt on the grass, continuing to watch, feeling somewhat ashamed that she was spying on them... and yet titillated by the idea that maybe they'd wanted to be seen. They weren't in the most secluded area of the estate grounds, after all. Neryt found her fingers sliding down the waistband of her pants, under her panties, finding the throbbing ache and stroking it in insistent circles.

Ben was licking Dennis's cock now, making Dennis gasp and sigh, whimpering as his toes curled and his legs shook. "Tease," Dennis rasped.

"I love doing this to you," Neryt heard Ben say, his voice soft and husky. "Such a beautiful cock deserves to be worshiped." Ben reached up to stroke Dennis's face. "Such a beautiful Master deserves to be worshiped."

Oh, fuck yes... Neryt was trembling as much as Dennis was, and had to stop herself from whining.

"Mmmmmmm," Dennis said, and grabbed Ben by his hair, a mischievous look on his face. Ben came up to kiss Dennis, and after a few passionate kisses, Neryt heard Dennis tell Ben, "I want to worship you too."

Their gaze held, and they gave each other another kiss, rubbing their tongues together open-mouthed before they lay at each other's sides. Neryt watched, riveted, as Ben took Dennis's cock back into his mouth, and Dennis swallowed Ben's cock to the hilt.

Neryt continued playing with her clit as Ben and Dennis sucked each other's cocks, moaning with their mouths full, hands roaming over each other as far as they could reach, shivering with each caress. After a few minutes of slow sucking they sucked harder and faster, the moans louder, hands now exploring balls and asses. Neryt slowed her rubbing down, wanting to savor the delicious sight of them, but when Dennis took Ben's cock out of his mouth and pushed his tongue in Ben's ass, her fingers worked even harder than before, frenzied, breathless. Soon Ben and Dennis were rimming each other, utterly devouring each other, shameless in their animal hunger. Every "mmmmmm" and grunt and growl built Neryt's tension higher, and when they resumed sucking each other's cocks, fingering each other's asses, Neryt had to bite her lip to keep from crying out. She had never been so wet - she could feel the cream slicking her thighs, dripping into her ass. The sight of Dennis licking Ben's cock, paying special loving attention to the head, a look of raw lust on his face, almost undid her. And again when Ben's tongue dipped back into Dennis's ass, his fist pumping Dennis's cock hard and fast, as Dennis made high-pitched noises, fingering Ben hard, sucking him so fast and hard it made a deliciously filthy sound.

Ben kissed the head of Dennis's cock, as Dennis ate Ben's ass again, working Ben's cock in his fist as Ben had done to him, and Ben had four fingers in Dennis's ass, his thumb stroking the place where the balls and ass met. Dennis got louder, and Ben's moans got deeper, and soon they were both loudly moaning with their mouths full as they continued sucking each other's cocks, fingering each other's asses, working towards the finish. They joined their free hands as they shuddered, screaming around each other's cocks, and at the sight of cum spilling around the corners of Dennis's mouth and down his chin, Neryt climaxed, biting her free hand to contain the sob of relief.

When Neryt opened her eyes, Ben and Dennis were kissing, tasting their combined flavors... and then they licked the cum off each other's chins, before kissing some more. Neryt wondered if they were done, but the way they kept kissing... and then kissing more insistently... suggested otherwise, and when Ben's index finger brushed Dennis's nipple before he lowered his head to suckle, Neryt's cunt twinged, wanting more.

Neryt saw Ben's lips form the words: "Fuck me."

Dennis gently pushed Ben onto his back, and retrieved lube that he'd packed in the picnic basket - Neryt would have laughed at this if she weren't so turned on - and Neryt kept watching as Dennis squirted lube directly on and in Ben's ass, and then began to finger him as they resumed kissing. Ben used the Force to squirt lube onto Dennis's cock, and Ben took Dennis's cock in his hand and stroked it, coating it with the lube from head to shaft, as Dennis moaned into their kisses. "I want you," Dennis husked before he kissed along Ben's jaw, down his neck. When Dennis kissed that sweet spot where the neck met the shoulder, Ben's hips bucked and he cried out, "Oh shit, fuck me, Dennis..."

Dennis laughed, on his way down to kiss Ben's nipple, licking and sucking, kissing some more, before kissing across his chest to love the other. Ben moaned, and Dennis's fingers worked harder and faster inside him. Dennis kissed back up the other side of Ben's neck... he took a few licks... and then he rained sweet little kisses over Ben's face, before he claimed Ben's mouth with his and Ben kissed him back with furious passion that made Neryt rub herself harder, trying not to moan. Ben threw his arms around Dennis, spread his legs, and arched his back. "Please," Ben moaned.

Dennis got on his knees between Ben's legs, and Neryt watched as Dennis began pushing his cock into Ben's ass, a little at a time. Dennis's eyes went back and forth between watching his cock enter Ben's channel, and watching Ben's face. The look of lust just intensified Neryt's excitement. Once Dennis was all the way in, he and Ben both cried out, and Dennis rested inside him for a moment. Then he held Ben by the ankles as he began to work his hips, thrusting in and out of him. "Ohhh, ohhhhhhh," Ben moaned. "Oh, fuck..."

Dennis hissed and bit his lower lip. "Oh, fuck, baby, you feel so good."

"Uhhhhh! Ahhhhhh!" Ben's hips rolled in time with Dennis's hips, his back arched even more. "Oh, Dennis..."

"Mmmmmmmmmmmm...." Dennis threw his head back a little and took a deep breath. "Fuck, that's good..."

"Your cock is so fuckin' good..." Ben whimpered a little. "Oh, fuck, right there..."

Dennis reached down to take Ben's cock in one hand, and the other caressed from Ben's hip up to his chest, rubbing the nipple in slow, lazy circles before it made its way down to Ben's stomach. "Ben. Oh, Ben, I love you..."

"Fuck!" Ben clenched his teeth, and made a desperate whine as he worked his hips harder, fists reaching up to grab the blanket underneath him. "Fuck, fuck, fuck..."

Dennis started thrusting harder. "Yeah, that's it. Take that cock... show me who owns this ass..."

Ben shuddered and whimpered, hands fisting the blanket. He writhed, his hips continuing to buck against his lover's, as Dennis fucked him harder still, groaning.

Neryt was on all fours now, trying to balance herself as she played with her clit, working her hand in the same rhythm as Dennis was working his hand on Ben's cock. She wasn't going to last much longer, and she hoped she'd be able to see them come before she brought herself off. They seemed close too.

The fucking and rubbing continued, with Ben and Dennis getting louder, until Ben's legs were propped on Dennis's shoulders and Dennis slammed into Ben as hard and as fast as he could, balls slapping Ben's ass. The slap of their flesh just made it that much hotter for Neryt, who was shaking from head to toe, juices soaking her entire hand, rubbing her clit for dear life. Oh fuck ohfuckohfuck...

Neryt could feel it in the air just before Ben climaxed. She heard the scream, watched Ben bucking madly as his cum sprayed all over Dennis's chest and stomach. Dennis gave a wild cry then, a few last furious thrusts, growling as he jerked Ben's cock until it was spent, thrusting until he was spent, panting. He collapsed on top of Ben and they kissed, and Ben collected cum leaking from his cock and pushed cum-soaked fingers into Dennis's mouth, which he licked and sucked with a look of sensual enjoyment on his face that made Neryt's pussy contract a second time. She fell to the ground, shivering and twitching, hoping and praying her act of voyeurism wouldn't be discovered.

For a brief instant, the sunlight seemed to shine directly onto Dennis and Ben, a slight breeze stirring around them, as they nuzzled and gave each other soft little kisses, lost in each other's eyes. Neryt gave a happy sigh, watching them, and then, as soon as she was able to stand, she disappeared into the apple grove as quickly as she could, staggering back to the palace.

As she passed the rose garden, Reine jumped out of literally nowhere, landing beside Neryt, making her jump. Reine laughed, and Neryt gave Reine a playful swat, and then Reine swatted Neryt's ass, and Neryt felt her cunt twinge again. OK, libido, stop, seriously.

"We about ready to do some swoop ridin'?" Reine grinned.

"Uh... yeah!" Neryt still felt a bit dazed from her little adventure.

Neryt felt like asking to stop at the palace so she could freshen up, but Reine was eager enough to get started that they went straight to the swoop track. Over the last few days they'd run the track at the swoop's lowest-speed setting - which was still faster than a speeder bike - and this time Neryt had them go at the next speed for three circuits, the last through the more difficult track, with its sharper turns and obstacle course. They managed to complete the circuits without incident, and then they sat in the bleachers to catch their breath, splitting a soda.

It was when Neryt passed the can of soda back to Reine that Reine wrinkled her nose a little, like she had smelled something peculiar. She gave Neryt a strange look, and Neryt thought she could die of embarrassment.

"Is that... pussy?"

When Neryt looked off to the side, Reine busted out laughing. "Oh my Force, it is."

"I'm sorry. I really should have cleaned up first."

"Oh, it's not a bad smell." Reine gave Neryt a rather pointed look, and Neryt felt heat flooding her. "Just... unexpected, was all." Reine cocked her head to one side. "So what, you rubbed one out when you were going for a walk?"

"I rubbed two out." Neryt bit her lower lip.

"Oh, myyyyyyyyyyyyyyy." Reine smiled. "Trees make you horny?"

Neryt laughed, and then she said, "I... uh..." She looked down, then off to the side, and then she looked at Reine and laughed some more. "Oh Force, how do I even talk about this."

"I'm just curious. You can tell me to shut up if I'm overstepping my bounds."

"No, it's OK." Neryt bit her lower lip again. "So... when I was walking... I went through the orchards and found out I wasn't alone out there."

"Oh?"

"Ben and Dennis were having a 'picnic.'" Neryt made air quotes.

"Ohhh. Oh, I see." Reine nodded. "You have it for them pretty bad."

Neryt sighed. "They're fucking hot. Watching them suck and fuck each other was the hottest thing I've ever seen in my life, and I've seen some really hot porn on the Holo-" Neryt's voice trailed off and she looked away, sheepish.

Reine cracked up laughing. "Girl, you don't have to be ashamed of watching porn!" She started singing, "The Holonet is for porn, the Holonet is for porn..."

Neryt laughed too. "Well, I write some, so yes, I am aware of this fact."

"Do you."

"Yeah. Uh... I write Parry Hotter fic."

"I'd be real interested in reading that sometime."

"OK. Well, back to Ben and Dennis." Neryt gave a nervous laugh. "Ben and Dennis aren't just hot together, but... I like them as people. I like spending time with them. When I'm with the two of them and their kids, or just the two of them by themselves... I feel like we click. But... I don't think they like me that way. I know they like women, but... I think they see me as this kid."

"They'd have to be blind if they do." Reine's eyes trailed over Neryt's body, and Neryt would have blushed if her skin weren't already red. "You look like a woman to me."

"OK, but I'm gonna be seventeen in a few weeks. Sixteen is legal adulthood on Serenno, but it wasn't that long ago that I wasn't a legal adult, and, well... I lack adult experience."

"I don't think experience or lack thereof matters to people like Ben and Dennis. I heard that Dennis is the only guy Ben has been with, for example."

"I don't just mean sexual, though. Like I said, I think they just... don't think of me that way."

"Well, there's one way to find out."

"Ohhhh no, don't even suggest that I try to talk to them and tell them how I feel. It was hard enough saying all of this to you, never mind to them."

"Actually, that wasn't where I was going." Reine pursed her lips, and took a moment to consider her choice of words, before she went on. "So, you're into guys, yes?"

"More or less. Can't be just anyone, though."

Reine nodded, and then she said, "Are you also into girls?"

"I think so? Most of my fantasies have been about guys, and specifically guys doing it with other guys, but I sometimes get horny thinking about girl on girl, and sometimes pretty girls arouse me the way a hot guy does."

"So here's something you may or may not know. Just like you and I both think guys together is hot... there are a lot of guys who think girls together is hot. I have an idea about how to proceed with Ben and Dennis, and it goes like this: you and I can kiss each other and make out in front of them. If they were interested in you already and you just didn't realize it... it's going to be obvious. If they weren't interested in you, they just might be by the time we're finished - they might look at you a whole new way. And maybe they won't be interested at all... but something tells me this will get their attention."

Neryt didn't respond right away, and then Reine looked down and said, "Ah, shit, I hope I didn't creep you out..."

"No, you didn't." The words came out a little more forcefully than Neryt intended them to - her body was starting to react again, as her mind raced with mental images of what it would be like to have a hot makeout session with Reine while Ben and Dennis ogled them. Then Neryt asked, "Will Malak mind?"

Reine snorted. "Malak would want holovideo or a live demonstration."

Neryt cackled.

"So... if it's something you're down for trying... we can put it to the test... see how they react."

"OK." Neryt nodded. She checked the time. "I have a Force coaching session with Dennis once we finish up here. If you want to come with me to that, maybe we could try it then."

"Deal." Reine grinned. They stood up from the bleachers then and shook on it, and then Reine leaned in and gave Neryt a kiss. Neryt's lips parted slowly, hesitantly, but the moment Reine's tongue met hers, it was electric. Neryt moaned, her tongue swirling against Reine's like she'd been kissing all her life, when in fact it was her first kiss. Reine's hands were on Neryt's hips, then reached around to cup her ass, and Neryt put her arms around Reine's waist, moving in closer, their breasts pressed together as the kiss deepened, tongues playing, exploring.

When they pulled apart, Neryt was breathless, and the look in Reine's eyes was the same look Dennis gave Ben as he entered him.

"That was for practice," Reine said, her voice husky.

"Wow." Neryt felt like an idiot. Wow? "I... never kissed anyone before."

"Really?" Reine smiled. "Well, congratulations. I'm honored to have been your first kiss." She patted Neryt's butt, giving her a wicked grin. "It won't be our last."

I wonder what that tongue of hers feels like other places. Neryt shivered a little, and Reine took Neryt's hand as they walked back to their swoop bikes to ride home.

_

While Sev had an assignment, he also had several hours to complete it, and he needed to blow off some steam... so he decided to visit his apprentice.

Han and Leia were both home, and Leia made them some coffee. After coffee was finished, Sev took Han out to the Solos' backyard and immediately ignited his lightsaber, giving Han the Makashi salute. Han ignited his, and saluted Sev back.

Sev began to walk forward, and then he swung. Their blades met, hissing, crackling as Han pushed back at him.

Sev fought like Dooku, but faster, more aggressive. Today Sev came at Han with lightning speed, his bladework enhanced by what Han picked up on as anger - not directed at him, but still there... like fighting Han was a substitute for fighting someone else. Sev felt Han grasping at their Force bond, and then Han felt like he was smacked in the face, just before Sev took a swing at Han's abdomen. Han blocked just in time, and then he swung back, taking another swing when he saw Sev's blade move to block, hoping to catch Sev with a feint. But Sev knew the tricks. He parried, and then made a riposte, teeth clenched. Sev usually got that look before he pulled his staff apart into two lightsabers, and Han braced himself.

Sev made a flèche, scoring a hit - a minor lightsaber burn, but still annoying and painful nonetheless - and Han missed Sev as he passed ahead. Once Sev was a distance back, then Han watched as Sev went to pull the lightsabers apart - and Force threw him. When Sev was on the ground, Han rushed him, and then was Force thrown himself, several feet, landing on his ass. Sev threw Force lightning at him, and Han deflected it, sending it to explode a nearby stone. Han got up, and Sev moved forward, and then Han lunged, and Sev parried. Sev's riposte was combined with a feint, and when Han was caught off guard, Sev hit him again. Sev reached out with the Force to try to disarm Han, then, and Han shielded himself, now holding his lightsaber with the Force, not just his hand.

"You're learning," Sev said. "But you still have much to learn." With that, another flèche, but this time, Han parried, and his riposte went to the non-dominant lightsaber - yanking it out of Sev's hand when Sev moved his blade too slow.

Han could hear the fuck in Sev's head, and he smiled a little. Sev sneered at him, and then more Force lightning. Han found himself absorbing it, and sending it back - Sev blocked it with a Force shield, and then Force threw him again.

When Han was down, Sev was right on him, swinging in the "kill" position. Han's blade parried just in time, and the riposte was fast and furious. Sev took a few steps backward, and Han got up and followed him - which was what Sev wanted. When Sev's lightsaber swung, he used Han's distraction with parrying to give another Force throw, this time harder than before. Both of Sev's lightsabers came at him now, and Han blocked one... reaching for the other with the Force, grabbing as hard as he could. This time he got it, and now he wielded two lightsabers, going on the offensive.

Sev gave him a predatory smile, before more Force lightning. A riposte, and then another flèche... but in addition to scoring a hit with his one lightsaber, Sev touched Han... and brought him to his knees. Han started to feel like all of the life was being drained from his body, like time itself was slowing down, the world fading to grey, a dull ache that got louder and racked his body with spasms as he was helpless to the siphoning of energy.

Oh shit, what is he doing?

Han fell on the ground, and he tried to make words, tried to plead with Sev to stop, but Sev kept draining him, and for a minute it looked like Sev really did intend on killing him - this was a sink-or-swim lesson. Han had to find a way to swim, and fast.

Han probed that source of anger again. Sev had some fight with Dooku before he left. Han pulled on his Force bond with Sev, making Sev feel what he was feeling... making Dooku feel it. Sev gasped, and immediately broke the Force Drain, and the moment he did, Han burned Sev in the thigh, making Sev go down with a yelp. Han stood over Sev, his lightsabers on either side of Sev's throat.

He got Force thrown hard, and then Sev pulled both lightsabers out of his hands with the Force, and Han watched as Sev directed all three lightsabers back at him with just the Force. He tried waving them away, but Sev was locked on them, and just before the lightsabers could impale him, Han ducked, and then without thinking about it, he did something that felt like a rip, right at Sev's eyes. Sev cried out, and the lightsabers fell.

"I can't see," Sev yelled. His eyes had turned completely milky white.

Han took a deep breath. "Well, that's what you get for fighting dirty, kid." He walked to Sev, slowly. "Fuck, I hope I didn't permanently blind you."

The minute Han took Sev's hand, a lightsaber slashed across his back - not enough to mortally wound, but enough to tear his skin but good - and Han fell over. Sev kicked him when he was down.

"Good job, fucker," Sev said, and Makashi saluted Han with his own lightsaber, before deactivating it. His irises were back to their usual green.

"Fuck."

Sev handed Han his lightsaber hilt, and then he used the Force to retrieve his curved-hilt lightsabers, turning them off, putting them back together, compressing the staff hilt before clipping it to his belt. Sev helped Han up. "Bacta time."

They sat in the 'fresher together, tending to each other's wounds. "How bad is it?" Han asked Sev, as Sev put bacta patches on his back.

"Looks like you were in a sex dungeon, but otherwise nothing serious."

Han laughed. "Leia says your old man has quite an impressive dungeon."

"Yeah." Sev gave an annoyed sigh.

Han turned around and gave Sev a look. "You know... that fight was a lot nastier than usual."

"Yes, it was. It necessarily has to be, because if and when you fight your son, he's going to be worse than I am. He doesn't give a shit about you. I do."

"And you give a shit about that old man of yours even more." Han raised an eyebrow. "Don't bullshit me, Sev. You took your aggression out on me. It wasn't me you were fighting out there, it was Dooku."

Sev pinched the bridge of his nose and looked away.

Han gave Sev a little kick. "I don't mind you being a tough instructor - I don't want you to baby me. But fighting me is not a substitute for working out your shit with your other half."

"Could we not have this discussion?"

"No, we couldn't not have this discussion." Han glared at Sev, and Sev glared back. "I told you I think of you as being like another son of mine... so this is me in dad mode here."

"I'm not impressed."

"Hi, Not Impressed. I'm Han."

Sev facepalmed and made a Wookiee noise.

"So what happened with you and Dooku this morning? I assume it was this morning."

Sev took a deep breath. A couple of minutes passed before Sev found his words. "He thought I took one of my jokes too far and he got pissy with me about it... and I got pissy back at him. And... well... before he and I got together, when I was just his apprentice, he and I fought like you would not believe. Just being in the same room with him, breathing the same air, seemed to set us off."

Han smiled knowingly. "That sounds just like me and Leia."

"For the last couple of months, things have been good. I tease him, he spanks me... but it doesn't cross a line. Except it sort of did this morning. I seemed to push his buttons just the right way, and I felt some of that old... I don't know how to explain it." Sev looked down at his boots. "When I was at the New Force Order, Vader told me that Dooku didn't actually give a shit about me and he was just using me, because why would someone like Dooku be interested in someone like me. Dooku and I are very, very opposite. He's a Count of Serenno. I grew up on the wrong side of Coronet City. Dooku spent most of his life as a Jedi, thinking no more of using the Force than you or I would think to go to the bathroom or scratch an itch. My aunt and uncle who raised me had a real bug up their ass about me and my brothers and cousin being Force-sensitive and they tried to beat it out of us, so it was like pulling teeth just to get me to move a cup across the room, never mind do what I did just now, out there. Dooku is very refined and elegant. I curse like a sailor and I give no fucks about it. So after our little spat this morning, I wondered if maybe that initial rush of novelty has finally been wearing out its welcome with him, especially as he's about to be coronated tomorrow morning. I mean, he is going to be the bonafide Regent of Serenno, and he is going to be the head of state for the Commonwealth itself until we take Coruscant and set up a new government for the entire Galaxy. I'm just this guy. Maybe he's finally gotten to a place where he's like 'it's been fun, but you don't fit my life anymore'. And if he has, it's gonna suck. It's gonna hurt."

Han waited a minute, and then he said, "I highly doubt that's the case, and you know why? Because again... this sounds just like me and Leia."

"Seriously?"

Han snorted. "She was Princess of Alderaan. I was a smuggler. I was orphaned at age six, like you, grew up a street urchin, took up with a shadier element of society. I remember meeting Leia and thinking she was the most beautiful woman in the Galaxy... being fascinated and infuriated by her at the same time. Even after we said I love you, even after we started sleeping together... I still wondered what she'd see in a guy like me. Even when we were kicking ass and saving the Galaxy together, forging bonds in fire... I still struggled with doubt. And you know, Leia and I have had our ups and downs. When Kylo started being really difficult, years ago, it negatively impacted our relationship and we wound up separating, taking a breather... thinking we were also doing the kid a solid because a lot of his problems were with me, so I figured it would be better for everyone if I went away. And all I did was miss Leia, and it turns out she missed me too. It took me getting stabbed in the gut and being brought back from the dead for us to admit we had something really special, and the last several months we've been working on rebuilding our relationship. I don't want to see you make the same mistake I did where you walk out on Dooku because you think he'd be better off without you, especially because the Restorers aren't gonna be there if my son shanks you. This is your shot, kid. And let me tell you something - when Kylo dragged you off to the Finalizer to try to get you to execute your brother, but we didn't know what was going on and Dooku thought maybe both of you were gonna die? Dooku looked like he could shit himself. He was on the verge of tears. That man loves you. I could see it, I could feel it. Your you-ness is why he let you in, after years of being surrounded by people more or less like himself at the Jedi Order and then on Serenno and dealing with career politicians in the Separatist Senate, who didn't pass muster enough for him to open his heart. He could have had other people if he wanted to - he has class, he has money - but you're his first love. He's not just politely tolerating your personality to get down your pants. This is a man who judges people for how they drink their tea. He loves you, the way Leia loves me. We struggle with being loved like that, because of our issues, but those issues don't change how our partners feel."

"He's right, you know," Leia said, from the 'fresher door.

"How long were you listening in?" Han smirked.

"Long enough." Leia put a hand on Sev's shoulder. "Dooku and I have both remarked that we're a bit alike in personality. We're not alike in every single way - I don't ever see him with the harem I've got - but he and I are alike enough that... well... yeah. Sometimes Han drives me nuts, but in the years where he wasn't around to drive me nuts? I suffered. I missed him so much, even the corny stuff, even the stuff that got under my skin. And I was also there to observe, the day you were taken, the day we wondered if you and Dennis were going to get away in one piece... and the pain in that man's eyes broke my heart. He would give his life for yours. If he wanted some perfect, refined, composed, polished... whatever... he could have already had that. He chose you. You give him something he needs, that he can't get elsewhere. Same with me and Han. Same with me and the rest of my partners."

"And you know, don't take our word for it. Talk to him yourself. Have a heart to heart."

"As painful as lovers' quarrels can be, they're actually an educational opportunity," Leia said. "They can clear the air, and get you to sit down and talk about things and find an understanding you didn't have before. Clarification... reassurance."

"Also, makeup sex." Han grinned.

"Oh yeah."

Sev followed them to the kitchen, and Leia asked, "Coffee for the road?" Sev nodded.

"So there's something else on your mind," Han said.

"Yeah, Dooku wants me to come up with a CIS logo and flag by this evening, in time for his ceremony tomorrow. He of course had to drop this on me today."

"He's not using the old Separatist logo?" Leia cocked her head to one side.

"He didn't say he's not, but he seems to want to modify it somehow... like keep an element of the old while updating it to something new... so people understand this isn't the Clone Wars era Separatists."

"Well, what would be appropriate in that case is combining the Separatist logo with the starbird of the Rebellion and the Resistance."

Sev waited, and Leia showed him. Sev had seen the logo before - he'd been educated in Galactic history and the First Order had a few run-ins with the Resistance during his time as a combat medic - but he felt like he was seeing it for the first time.

"There's an interesting history behind the symbol," Leia said. "During the Rebellion, there was a Mandalorian graffiti artist named Sabine Wren. She chose that as her tag - a symbol of rebellion against the Empire, and hope for something better - because of the legend of the starbird. When the starbird seems to disappear, it's not dead and gone - it's hiding inside a nebula, waiting for a star to go supernova, so it can carry the nova's fire in its wings."

The hair on Sev's arms and nape stood on end, and he shivered. He remembered his first night on Serenno - what felt like ages ago, even though it had only been almost two months - and how he and Dooku had made love together, and after their orgasm...

They kiss again, and as they kiss, they feel the Force flow through them and around them. In his mind's eye, Sev sees the mated pair of Serennian sea-doves from the day he and Dooku had went to the beach on Arcturus... and he watches as they soar into the stars, into the heart of a supernova, where they catch on fire, and then, after an eternity in a single moment, fly back out in a blaze of glory, new stars born from the sparks of their tails and wings.

Another visionary flash, this time from the first six years of Sev's life, when his parents were still alive, and he and his brothers lived on Eshan. The patron god of the Echani was a war god, and his primary symbol the phoenix, perched on his shoulder or sent out to guide his armies - a bird that, every hundred years, when it seems about to die, catches on fire and is renewed, feathers brighter than before, strong and young again.

Sev was then reminded of the Seven Light ritual done at The Black Lotus, and Ben telling the origin myth:

The rose caught on fire and hatched two firebirds. Ashla and Bogan saw their children but for an instant before they were gone - they had flown to the stars. ...the starbirds returned to tell their family that they had made roses of fire across the entire blank canvas of space, that exploded into life. The twins from were given the names Destiny and Design.

"Holy fuck," Sev said. He got up and hugged Leia hard enough that Leia gave a little squeal. "Thank you."

Sev ran home.

_

Neryt was finally learning how to use a lightsaber - she was given a loaner until she could make her own - and she and Dennis worked through Soresu drills, before sparring as Ben and Reine watched. Dennis overcame Neryt quickly the first round, but the subsequent two rounds she lasted longer, and then Dennis had her spar against Reine's Juyo. Reine and Neryt locked eyes, and Reine came at her hard, with Neryt just barely keeping on top of Reine's attacks. Finally Neryt resorted to the Force, catching Reine with a Force throw off-guard, and she went on the offensive. Reine Force threw her in kind, and then Reine pounced on her, like a cat. Ben and Dennis gave each other a look of surprise as Reine held her lightsaber close to Neryt's neck, with her hand on Neryt's throat, Force choking her. Neryt found a way to gather her Force energy enough to break the Force choke and roll Reine onto her back, grazing Reine's shoulder with her lightsaber before holding it against Reine's throat.

"Uh... this isn't standard lightsaber combat," Dennis protested.

"We're in a war, you think people aren't gonna fight dirty?" Reine snarled. She clenched her teeth and then she grabbed Neryt by a lekku and they rolled. Neryt pinned Reine again, then Reine pinned Neryt and Neryt swung, making Reine roll to dodge the lightsaber, and when Neryt leapt up, Reine pounced her again... and once Neryt was pinned, Reine kissed her passionately.

Neryt's response was to drop her lightsaber, wrap her arms around Reine, and kiss her back.

Ben's jaw dropped. Dennis felt like he couldn't breathe.

The two women continued kissing like it was a perfectly natural response to lightsaber combat, and when Reine began kissing Neryt's neck, Neryt whimpered, grabbing Reine's ass.

"Mmm, you like that?" Reine husked. She licked Neryt's left lekku. Neryt almost came just from that, gasping as Reine's tongue played with the sensitive tip.

Ben and Dennis noticed they were tenting, and Dennis tried to clear his throat, but instead a little whine came out.

Neryt initiated the next kiss, and Reine moaned into the kiss, playing with Neryt's right lekku with one hand... the other hand casually cupping a breast, teasing the nipple to a peak through Neryt's shirt.

"Ohhhhh..." Neryt kissed Reine harder, and the two women moaned "mmmmmmmmm" even louder, Neryt's hands rubbing Reine's ass, before slowly caressing up Reine's back. Reine nipped Neryt's lower lip, and then rubbed her tongue against Neryt's, open-mouthed, as one of Neryt's hands stroked Reine's hair and face.

Ben finally coughed. "OK, um... uh..."

Reine and Neryt looked at them, and then they giggled and kissed again. "This is fun," Neryt said, rubbing her tongue against Reine's again.

"I think... um... practice is done for the day." Dennis got up, and Neryt noticed the very obvious hard-on. So did Reine.

There's your sign. Reine's lips quirked.

Reine pulled Neryt up, and they kissed one last time before Reine took Neryt's hand.

"Thank you for the coaching today," Neryt said to Dennis.

"Uh, yes. Thank you for the show... I mean... um..." Dennis facepalmed, and Ben elbowed him. Ben was hard too, and Neryt winked at them as Reine led her away.

They collapsed into a gigglefit when they reached Reine and Malak's villa.

"Wow," Neryt said, and then she cringed. Again with the "wow".

"No, it was definitely wow," Reine said, grinning.

"I... uh..." Neryt's nipples were obviously hard through her shirt... and so were Reine's.

"Yeah, that was fun." Reine's eyes twinkled.

They lingered for a moment, and Reine said, "I'd normally invite you in and ask if you wanted to finish what we started, but my husband isn't really in the mood for company."

"Well, hopefully you can... ah... take this and improve his mood."

Reine nodded. "I sure will." Then she smiled and said, "But you know... if you ever want to see what it's like to be with another woman..."

"...you mean... us...?"

"Uh huh."

Neryt bit her lower lip and she said, "Yeah, I think I could get into that."

"OK. I'll leave it up to you to set a time and place. No pressure to get into it right away - if you need a few days, few weeks, whatever, I get it. But I'm looking forward to it, whenever it happens."

They kissed again, and held each other's hands for a moment, before Reine strutted off, Neryt watching her ass all the way to the door.

Neryt was soaked, and she hoped dinner wasn't going to be anytime soon - she was about to break her masturbation record.

_

After dinner, Dooku retreated to his study, and after he'd been there over a half-hour, there was a knock at the door. Dooku felt Severin's Force signature behind it. "Come in," he said.

Sev had a tablet in hand, and slowly approached Dooku's desk. "I have the assignment completed, milord."

"Excellent. Let's see it."

Sev turned on the tablet, and Dooku was greeted by this on the screen:


(source: Simple Darthipedia)

If looks could kill, Severin Yusanis would have been vaporized on the spot.

Dooku threw the tablet onto his desk and pinched the bridge of his nose with a deep sigh. "Severin..."

Sev cracked up laughing, and when Dooku looked up to glare at him, Sev laughed even harder. "Your face. Oh... Idis... oh, shit..." Sev's own face was bright red, his eyes gleaming.

"That had better not be the actual design you came up with," Dooku said.

Sev shook his head. "No. I just wanted to troll you."

Dooku sighed again, but Sev noticed Dooku's lips quirked ever so slightly, and there was a twinkle in his eyes.

Sev picked up the tablet, pressed a button, and then Dooku saw another image.

"This first image is our logo," Sev said. "It combines the starbird of the Rebellion and the Resistance, with the old Separatist logo. Plain and simple. I opted for a black background because of your Dark Side alignment, and blue symbols because blue is your favorite color and many people associate blue with trust, loyalty, and wisdom."

"Good," Dooku said, nodding.

Then Sev pressed the button again and the second image showed up. "Here's the flag design."

"The flag is in shades of blue, not just because you like the color and it has respectable associations, but the hottest part of a flame is blue. The old Separatist logo has a septagram in the center - for the Seven Light - and is held in the wings of what can be perceived as a starbird or a phoenix. The Echani have a legend about the phoenix renewing itself with fire once every hundred years instead of dying, and the Rebellion chose the starbird as its symbol because it renews itself in a supernova... that for all the Empire's destruction, they weren't going to give in and die, but create something better."

Sev's eyes met Dooku's, then. "When Leia told me about the starbird... I was reminded of that Force vision we had, two months ago, our first night here. And then hearing about our roles in the Seven Light. This symbol is us. We've both been broken, we've both had our lives ripped apart by injustice, by those who are truly evil. And yet, the Force brought us to each other. You're fighting the First Order not just because of abstract ideals you have about right and wrong, but you have a family to protect, now. You have a bondmate to share your life with. I went into medicine because I wanted to help people. But it seems I was called to an even greater form of healing - helping you transform the Galaxy. If Kylo Ren tries to burn the Galaxy to ash and rule the ashes... then we will rise from the ashes, and we will fight him, with every last breath. We will give him hell. Together."

Dooku stood up, and just looked at Sev for a minute, and then he came around to the other side of the desk where Sev was standing... and kissed Sev as hard as he could. Sev felt himself being pushed onto the desk, and heard Dooku undoing his belt. Sev's hands reached to guide Dooku's, and then Sev began to undo his own belt, the button and zipper of his trousers...

Once they were naked, Dooku pushed Sev into position on the desk, with a growl. He climbed on the desk, crawling and settling down over Sev, laying supine, already erect. Dooku kissed Sev again, with a fire hot enough to transform a phoenix. He nipped Sev's lower lip hard enough to draw blood, tasting it as he used the Force to retrieve a bottle of lubricant he kept in the desk drawer.

Sev moaned as Dooku poured lube over and into his channel, and whimpered as he watched Dooku stroke himself, coating his hard cock with lube. Sev whimpered again as Dooku's fingers pushed into him, and Dooku kissed him as he stroked Sev's prostate to aching, frenzied readiness. "Fuck me," Sev rasped, his nails digging into the small of Dooku's back. "Take me. Conquer me."

Dooku gave Sev another hungry, passionate kiss as his cock slid in, both of them crying out when he was all the way inside. Dooku rested a moment, and then he propped Sev's legs on his shoulders and began fucking Sev hard. Gone was his usual gentleness, taking things slow and leisurely - they would do that later. Right here, right now, it was all raw, primal need.

"Oh, Idis, yes..." Sev's hips worked back at Dooku's, at the same fast, furious pace. "Fuck me, Daddy..."

Dooku groaned, and crushed Sev's mouth to his, his right hand reaching up to stroke Sev's face and hair. Their eyes met, and the heat and love in Dooku's dark brown eyes made Sev's breath catch, before Sev kissed him back.

When their mouths pulled apart, Dooku kissed and nibbled Sev's neck. He licked and sucked the sweet spot where the neck and shoulder met, and Sev clawed his back, howling. Sev's hips worked even harder and faster, urging Dooku to speed up the pace. Dooku's left hand stroked over Sev's body, over a hip, up the torso, lightly brushing the neck and then caressing the face... and his right hand seized Sev's dripping cock. They kissed again, their tongues duelling, fucking, both of them groaning into the kiss as Sev's nails clawed at Dooku's hips and ass.

Dooku trailed kisses along Sev's beard. "I love you," Dooku husked.

The look of vulnerability in Sev's eyes made Dooku kiss him again... and again... and they didn't stop kissing. They fucked so hard Sev worried for a brief instant that the desk would collapse beneath them... but it was a sturdy desk, and it felt too good to stop. Dooku's cock rubbed at Sev's prostate as his hand worked Sev's cock, and Sev's fingers left Dooku's back to play over his chest, teasing the nipples, brushing the silver-white chest hair that Sev loved so much. At last Sev seized Dooku's face between his hands and kissed Dooku with all of his love behind the kiss...

...and a few powerful thrusts later, they exploded together, kissing, drinking each other's cries as Sev's hot cum erupted over Dooku's hand, sprayed his chest, and Dooku spent deep inside Severin, filling him with the evidence of his passion. They kissed more softly, and then they lay still, arms and legs entwined, lost in the rhythm of two hearts beating as one.

At last Severin spoke. "I love you too, old man."

Dooku kissed him again. "I never get tired of hearing it."

"I wasn't so sure of that this morning."

Dooku gave Sev a look that was equal parts affection and exasperation. He took Sev's chin in his hand, and stroked Sev's beard. "Sweetheart, I have been very tense the last few days with all that has been going on - I am about to become Regent of Serenno, I am getting the Separatists back together, I am about to go to war with the First Order. Yes, I reacted a bit strongly to your... brand of humor... this morning. But truly... I could not live without you, as you are."

Sev took a deep, shuddery breath, and his eyes were too bright. Sev cringed a little, before he spoke. "Idis, part of the reason why I am the way I am towards you is because of the pain you're in... even now. I lived a very sad little life on Corellia. I know what it's like to be lonely, to be troubled by the way things are, to fight with everything you have and yet still feel powerless... to be afraid of the future. I like to make other people laugh because it's a reminder that everything isn't always life or death serious business... everything isn't always hopeless bullshit. I feel like in times like these it's more necessary to be reminded of that fact. So I push your buttons to try to get you to smile, a little."

"I know." Dooku took Sev's hand and kissed it.

"But honestly? Some of it is also because I am in so much fucking awe of you that... sassing you helps remind me that you're human. After I killed Vader a couple months ago, just before we went to Serenno the first time... I told you that night that you're my hero. And I truly meant it, and I mean it even more now. When Kylo dragged me off to the Finalizer to try to make me kill Dennis, I was scared. I'm still scared. But you? Look at you. You're taking this shitty, fucked-up, scary situation... and you are so strong... you're about to show the First Order how war is really done. You're about to show Kylo Ren what the Dark Side really looks like. I still sometimes struggle with doubt about what you see in me, feeling like I'm... no match for you, and..."

Dooku put a finger to Sev's lips, to silence him. "Sweetheart... with a simple flag design, you expressed something incredibly profound. Something sacred to me. For all that we are different, we also share a common core. You get it. After a lifetime, and a post-lifetime, of being misunderstood even by those closest to me... you understand what is important to me. And where we are different, we balance each other out. You help me to see the Galaxy through new eyes. And your playfulness makes your depth all the more fresh and interesting when it's uncovered. You have many layers to you. There is poetry in your soul. I love that about you."

They kissed, and Sev stroked Dooku's cheek, and his whiskers. "I love you so much, Idis. I was worried, for a little while, that I'd lose you."

"I told you, before we left Arcturus, I want to take a lifebond vow to you. I still intend on doing so." Dooku kissed him, and then he said, "Three weeks from tomorrow, I want us to be wed."

"...Yes."

"And now... this desk isn't very comfortable for laying on." Dooku winced, and climbed off of Sev, and Sev sat up, nodding and wincing also.

They made their way to the bedroom suite, and Sev asked Dooku, "So what do we do now?"

"The same thing we do every night."

"Try and take over the Galaxy?"

"I was thinking of taking something else first." Dooku gave Sev a small, wicked smile.

"Still hungry, are you?"

"Insatiable."

Chapter Text

The morning of the Regent swearing-in ceremony, Irina Dooku-Fett woke up earlier than usual, feeling a combination of excitement and anxiety. Mace woke up soon after her, and following his morning meditations, they took a shower together. Underneath the hot water they kissed again and again, hands roaming over each other, finally playing between each other's legs... and just before Irina could come, she dropped to her knees, kissing her way down Mace's chest and stomach, to take his freshly-washed cock into her mouth, eyes locked on his. She sucked him hard and hungry, making him come within minutes, and when he'd finished, she stood again and he resumed fingering her, until she clenched around him, gasping and shuddering with orgasm.

He carried her out of the shower to her bed, gingerly laid her down, and climbed on the bed, crawling on top of her. Irina arched to him, wrapped her legs around him, and then her arms too as he eased inside of her. When he was all the way in, they kissed, and there was a moment where they looked lovingly into each other's eyes before Mace began pounding away, making Irina shriek as his teeth nipped her neck.

"That's going to leave a mark," Irina said.

Mace grinned. "Good." He kissed her again, and then kissed and licked her neck before nipping at her throat. Irina's hips went wild underneath him, and she bit his neck in return, which made Mace cry out and fuck even harder.

Mace drove into her with abandon, kissing her passionately, the fingers of one hand pleasuring her clit, the fingers of the other teasing her nipples, stroking over the soft, supple skin of her stomach and thighs. When they got close, he pinned her wrists and took her hands in his... and then she gave him a shove with the weight of her body, rolling him onto his back, so she could ride him even harder. Mace growled, burying his face in her bouncing breasts, suckling hard at a nipple, as she clutched at his bald head, moaning louder and louder. Mace spanked her ass, and Irina almost came just from that.

"You act like such a classy, dignified lady," Mace whispered, "a Contessa of Serenno... but I know what a nasty girl you are." He spanked her ass again.

"Oh, fuck..."

"Oh yeah." Mace spanked her again. "I wonder what all those Counts and Contessas would think if I took you right in front of them..."

Irina bit his shoulder, shrieking into him as she rode even harder, as hard as she could, feeling like she could explode with the raw sexual need coursing through her. His fingers were furiously working her clit, and she was right there, right there but didn't want him to stop, wanted to keep feeling his cock banging away inside her, hearing his sexy voice speak her deepest truth...

"Such a nasty girl." He spanked her again. "You gonna come for me, nasty girl?"

"I'm so close," Irina sobbed. "I'm so close... I don't want to stop... so good... so fucking GOOD..."

Mace's response was to lick slowly at her nipple, fingers slowing down on her clit, teasingly brushing it... and that set her off. The combination of her clit and G-spot throbbing together made her gush as she climaxed, and Mace fucked through her orgasm, finally giving in when the contractions around his cock got to be too pleasurable to hold back any longer. "Irina," he cried out. "Oh, Irina, fuck, baby..."

"Oh, Mace." Irina kissed him. "I love you."

"I love you." Mace kissed her back, hard. "Fuck, I love you."

They cuddled together as they continued throbbing together, and then came down, drifting on waves of bliss, feeling warm and glowy. When the euphoria wore off, and Irina could find words again, she stroked Mace's face and said, "So, darling, since you've been here almost every night now..."

"Hmm?"

"...why don't you move in?" Irina pursed her lips. "I know it might seem a bit soon, but on the other hand, I suppose the Force would say we were overdue to find each other again."

"The Force has a way of making things escalate, that's for sure. And it feels right." Mace nodded. "If your brother doesn't mind me moving in here..."

"No, I don't think he will. It's not like we'd need an extra suite for you. And since this will be our space, we can decorate it to suit both our tastes, if you like."

"Yeah, I'd like that." Mace nodded. "I'm sure my granddaughter and her husband will appreciate not having to keep the volume down for my sake... though they don't always succeed with that."

Irina snorted. "Sometimes I can hear Severin. Though since you've been sleeping here, I daresay our noise competes with theirs."

Mace grinned. Then he said, "I wonder what Reine and Malak are gonna do with the extra room."

_

Reine Yusanis started her day by throwing up, and then leaning against the cold porcelain of the pot, hoping the heaves would go away.

She heard a knock at the 'fresher door. "Honey? You in there?"

"Yeah, it's just me. Aaaaaand my dinner."

Malak opened the door, and he saw Reine sitting on the 'fresher floor, looking pale underneath her caramel complexion. "Aw, baby, you puke?"

Reine nodded.

Malak frowned. He poured a glass of water from the tap - Serennian water was pristine - and Reine accepted it with a murmured thanks. Malak sat down on the floor with her.

"Should I get Sev down here to look you over?" he asked.

"It's probably just a little bug... or nerves. I mean, it's not my coronation ceremony, but..." Reine waved her hand. "I really, really like it here on Serenno, and the Dooku family has made me feel nothing but welcome, but I'm still... getting adjusted to everything. I grew up in an orphanage. I lived on the streets. I fixed up and sold old junk to support myself. Sometimes I stole from the kinds of people that I'm living around, now. It's not something I'm proud of. So I just... you know."

Malak kissed Reine's forehead, and pulled her into his arms. "Nobody here is judging you for where you came from. And you know, I'm damn proud to have you as my wife."

"I know." Reine gave Malak a squeeze. "I'm proud to have you as my husband." She managed a grin. "And sometimes my wife."

Malak wiggled his eyebrows at her, making her laugh. "Maybe Clarissa will come out and play later." Clarissa was the name Malak and Reine gave to the green female Twi'lek form that Malak sometimes shapeshifted into for his wife's enjoyment, as well as his own.

"Mmmmm, good." Reine smiled. Then she leaned back and said, "So... honey... about that..."

"Yes?"

"I know when this all started between us, we agreed it would be an open relationship, but we've never really acted on that apart from you and Dennis getting it on sometimes."

Malak nodded.

Reine cocked her head to one side. "If I found a girlfriend, would you be OK with that?"

Malak started laughing. "I'd consider myself a lucky bastard."

Reine laughed too. She went on, "She might be OK with you watching, possibly even participating, now and again, but it's something I have to clear with her."

"So it's not so much in the 'if' stage."

"It is and it isn't. We haven't done anything yet but talk, and we snogged a bit."

"So who is it?" And then Malak answered his own question. "Holy shit it's Neryt, isn't it?"

Reine nodded.

"Well. As a wise man once said, 'Get that pussy, girl.'"

Reine laughed again, harder, and then Malak gave her a fistbump.

"I'm pretty damn sure she was Mission," Reine told him.

He nodded. "She was."

"So... that leads me to another relevant discussion."

"OK, but unless you think you're gonna barf again, can we find someplace more comfortable to have it than the 'fresher floor?"

Reine nodded, and they walked to the kitchen. Malak began making breakfast. Reine normally loved Malak's cooking, but the very sight of eggs made her stomach act up again. Malak poured her a glass of orange juice and it got rid of the bad taste in her mouth. "Do you just want some toast?" he asked, and she nodded. "Maybe a little jam?"

"Yeah, we can try that."

Malak made eggs for himself, and toast for Reine. As the food cooked, he sat at the table with her, drinking coffee. "So, as you were saying..."

Reine folded her hands. "I've been remembering some more things about our past life together, when I was Juhani... and I remember Old Republic Era Malak telling me about his past relationship history."

"OK."

"Obviously we know Dennis was Meetra Surik. But you weren't just with the male Meetra."

"Nope." Malak looked off to the side.

"And you also had a fling with your Sith apprentice, Atton Rand."

Malak looked off to the other side. "One of the Attons."

"Yeah, well, I know which one."

"Toast is ready."

Reine smirked as he got up. "You're not getting off that quick."

"I never get off quick." Malak winked at her.

Reine cackled, and then she said, "What I'm trying to get at here is... it's OK with me if you want to repeat past history with them."

Malak ran a hand through his hair. "Is it that obvious?"

"Honey, we have a Force bond. I appreciate that you've been holding back to try to be considerate of me... and you were trying to be considerate of Kylo... but fuck Kylo."

"No, thank you." Malak came over with toast and jam, and then tended to his eggs. "I'm not sure that I should -"

"Malak," Reine said, through a mouthful of toast, "you should."

Malak made a Wookiee noise. "I mean, how awkward is this, fucking my ex-best-friend's parents..."

"I believe a wise man once said, 'Revenge is a dish best served on top of your enemy's family's naked bodies, with whipped cream.'"

Malak laughed so hard he had to lean against the wall. "This is why I love you." And then he sobered up. "That presumes they're even interested..."

Reine sighed. "Well, you'll find that out one way or another. I just don't want you to feel like if an opportunity presents itself, you have to hold back for my sake."

Malak nodded. "OK." He came back to the table with a plate of eggs scrambled with cheese. "So now this relationship is quite a bit more open."

"Yes... but it doesn't mean my feelings for you have changed. I want to see you happy. You're always trying to do the right thing and look out for other people, and, well... you can let loose a bit. And as far as Neryt goes, yeah I like her, and it'll help me scratch the proverbial itch... but what I like just as much is knowing it turns you on thinking about what I'll be doing with her."

"Hnnnnngggg." Malak put his fork down. "Woman, if you weren't feeling ill I'd want to take you on the kitchen table."

"I know. But I sure as hell will take you up on that offer when I'm not feeling like this. Hopefully I'll feel better later today or tomorrow."

"And if you don't... Sev is going to take a look at you." Malak wagged his finger. "I can't have anything happen to you. I can't lose any more people I love, right now."

Reine squeezed Malak's hand. "I know, baby." She kissed his hand, tearing up at the pain in his warm brown eyes. "I know."

_

As Sev and Dooku got dressed for the ceremony, they looked at the bruises left by Dooku's kisses and bites on Sev's neck and shoulders and chest, as Sev buttoned up his black tunic.

"This is still noticeable," Sev said, turning his head in the mirror.

Dooku chuckled at his handiwork, before kissing the bruises on Sev's neck, making him shiver.

"It's like you want the nobles to see this." Sev raised an eyebrow.

"Oh, my, would I do such a thing? That's so very scandalous." Dooku cupped Sev's chin in his hand and gave him a deep, hungry kiss, making Sev's cock leap to attention.

"Goddammit, Idis..." Sev looked at the time and glared. "Do you have to get me all worked up right now, when we don't have time to do anything about it?"

"What's the matter... the brat prince can't take a little teasing?"

Sev's glare intensified, and Dooku chuckled again. Sev narrowed his eyes. "You know what?"

"What?" Dooku smiled.

Sev swatted Dooku's ass.

The colors of House Dooku were brown and black, and that was reflected in their attire. Serennian nobility dressed in simple yet elegant clothing, reflecting a belief in Serennian culture that the Counts and Contessas were public servants and their wealth and power was for the benefit of the common people - evidenced by Serenno having a high standard of living for all its citizens, with free health care and free education. Sev admired Dooku's taste - aesthetic was one of the things they did actually have in common. Sev and Dooku were both wearing black tunics and black trousers; Sev wore a brown vest and a black-and-brown cape. Dooku wore his usual brown cape, and there was a light touch of brown and blue embroidery at the neck and hems of his shirt - a bit fancier than he would have liked, but it was just for the ceremony.

Sev slicked a little gel into his curls, and Dooku pulled lovingly at an exposed pointy ear, knowing how deliciously sensitive the points were. Sev bit his lip and growled. "Bastard."

"My legitimacy is not in question, dear." Then he playfully nipped at the point, before sucking on it.

"Ffffffffffffuuuuuuckkkk." Sev yanked himself away, and then he put his hands on his hips. "Unless you want me to ride you in front of your subjects... we need to calm the fuck down, Idis."

Dooku's dark eyes twinkled.

Dooku added a little bit of cologne - rose with a blend of woods, currant, musk, and rum; it was a scent Sev found intoxicating - and then he sat down to meditate. He'd already done his regular morning meditations, but with the gravitas of the occasion he felt it was necessary to meditate again, this time to ground and center... preparing himself to honor the legacy of his grandfather, who had once held the title of Regent. It was his grandfather who came to mind as he collected himself - the only adult in the first six years of Idis Dooku's life to show him anything approximating kindness and nurturing; Indrastae Dooku had been a father to all of Serenno. Dooku's first return to Serenno at age twenty-nine - at Qui-Gon's behest - had been just in time to see Indrastae die. Dooku had no idea his grandfather was dying, and spending those last days with him - seeing the Force's hand in bringing him back to properly say goodbye to the man - had left quite an impact on his psyche, as well as reinforced his opinion that Qui-Gon Jinn had a special connection to the Living Force, if that were not already made apparent by Qui bonding intensely with the land of Serenno.

As Dooku thought of his grandfather, words came to mind:

I do not aim with my hand; he who aims with his hand has forgotten the face of his father. I aim with my eye.

I do not strike with my hand; he who strikes with his hand has forgotten the face of his father. I strike with my mind.

I do not kill with my lightsaber; he who kills with his lightsaber has forgotten the face of his father. I kill with my heart.

-Sith Assassin's Creed, Korriban Sith Academy[1]

And then Dooku thought of Yoda... who had become his father. He reflected on how Yoda would have killed Sidious for him,[2] that the Clone Wars could have gone very differently indeed if he'd humbled himself enough to admit he still needed his Master. Now he and Yoda were on the same side of this war. It seemed significant, above and beyond providing closure to old wounds they had - there was a sense of cosmic rightness, that what needed to be done could not be done unless Dooku had his father's blessing and aid, where needed.

Dooku then thought of Qui-Gon Jinn... now his adopted son. When Qui-Gon died, it felt like a part of his soul had been ripped out. Qui-Gon had been returned to him... and they too, were closing old wounds. Dooku's thoughts turned to two specific memories of Qui-Gon:

Dooku is sixteen. He is absently feeding birds with Qui-Gon while Jocasta looks at philosphical notes on his tablet. He's forgotten that some of his personal journal is on there, which includes poetry. She reads it aloud:

What do I do to ignore them behind me?
Do I follow my instincts blindly?
Do I hide my pride from these bad dreams?
And give in to sad thoughts that are maddening?
Do I sit here and try to stand it?
Or do I try to catch them red-handed?
Do I trust some and get fooled by phoniness,
Or do I trust nobody and live in loneliness?
Because I can't hold on when I'm stretched so thin
I make the right moves but I'm lost within[3]

Dooku pulls the tablet out of her hands, looking particularly aggravated.

"Please don't read that," he says.

"Why not?"

"Because it's personal."

Jocasta folds her arms. "You know... you don't have to be so alone."

Dooku doesn't want to have this discussion with her. They'd been friends for two years - she is his only friend, and he doesn't want to ruin that by (necessarily) breaking her heart. What could he even say to her?The Jedi were forbidden from relations, and they would get in trouble if he was interested and did anything about it. But he wasn't. He thinks of Jocasta as being sort of like a sister. And I dream of a green-eyed young man who feels like he's a universe away, just out of my reach. The dreams had started on that trip to Kashyyyk, and they seemed to intensify anytime he was strongly in the presence of the Living Force. But even as part of him aches to know if those dreams are real or not, he finds attachments confusing, and the Force would always be central in his life. He is not like other young men his age; he is not like most people. He has a sense of purpose burned into his very soul. Attachments get in the way.

And yet, he is attached to Yoda, and this six-year-old boy he rescued when he was a baby, who is standing in front of him now.

"Dookie?"

"Yes?"

"When I'm old enough to be 'prenticed, you do it, ok?"

Saved by... an even more awkward proposition. But he can't say no to his little friend. "All right," he said, reluctantly.

"Promise?"

"I promise."

Dooku's word is bond - if he says he'll do something, he'll do it. He'd feel he failed the Force, otherwise, for what is the Force but your intent made manifest.

"Yay," Qui-Gon cheers. "Now Dookie won't be alone."

And that - a six-year-old's understanding of loneliness, and pledging himself as the solution... feels like a punch in the gut. Dooku's eyes burn, his lower lip quivers just a little.

"Are you all right?" Jocasta asks.

"...I think the pollen might be strong today," Dooku says, gesturing to a bed of flowers in the Temple gardens.

"Nuh-uh," Qui-Gon says. "Those plants don't pol-li-nate like that."

Dooku shoots Qui-Gon a murderous look, and Qui-Gon just smiles at him.

Then Jocasta says, "I suppose congratulations are in order, Master Dooku."

Dooku snorts. "I am not even a Jedi Knight yet."

"You will be. You'll be the best Jedi the Order has ever seen."

Dooku wants to respond with Your infatuation is talking but he does intend on being the best he could be, because the Jedi had... rescued him. For all that his peers could be obnoxious and cruel, his mother had been much worse. If his mother had seen him tear up just now, she would have backhanded him. He feels he owes the Jedi Order - and the Force itself - his life.

Which means he owes Qui-Gon the fulfillment of his word.

Which means he must succeed, even on his worst days when he daydreams that the Republic Ag Corps might not be a terrible thing (at least he'd be around nature).

"Yeah," Qui-Gon says. "Dookie is my hero."

That does it. The eyes burning again. Dooku turns his back on both of them, squaring his shoulders. He feels Jocasta's hand on one, and Qui-Gon takes one of his hands.[4]

...

Twenty-two-year-old Dooku is being Knighted. His Jedi Trials were exhausting - they were plagued by visions of war - and the ceremony feels anticlimactic in a way. He barely hears the Grandmaster's words as he kneels on stage, meditating, waiting for the moment.

And then he feels Yoda's presence in the Force, and opens his eyes to see Yoda pulling out his lightsaber, igniting the green blade. With a precision cut, Dooku's padawan braid falls to the floor, and Yoda says, "Rise, Jedi Knight." Dooku rises to his full six feet five inches, towering over his green Jedi Master, and the audience applauds. The loudest cheering is from Qui-Gon.

After the ceremony, Dooku goes to the 'fresher and cries. He doesn't cry. Except now he's crying. There is no emotion, there is only peace. But he feels overwhelmed by a flood of mixed emotions just the same, and guilty that he's feeling the way he is.

Four hours later, Dooku approaches the younglings' creche, to the dorm where the children Qui-Gon's age have their rooms. He finds Qui-Gon, and he says, "Follow me."

He is assigned a dorm next to Yoda's, which aggravates him - he interprets it as Yoda not trusting him to take an apprentice this soon after being Knighted, and Yoda can see his irritation. Yoda still offers to cook for them that first night, which Dooku responds to with a very sharp "No" - Dooku had become a talented cook to compensate for the fact that his Master's palate left something to be desired where humans were concerned. Dooku compromises by Yoda joining them for dinner, and after the boy goes to bed, he and Yoda sit up for awhile.

"If ever you need me, here, I always am," Yoda assures him.

Dooku nods.

"Much faith in you, have I. A fine Jedi Knight, you will be."

"I will do my best, Master." Dooku bows his head slightly, with reverence. "You set such a good example."

"And teach that example to Qui-Gon, you will. Like Master, like padawan."

Dooku realizes it then - just like he thinks of Qui-Gon as being like his son, Yoda thinks of Dooku as being like his son. "Master... I am sorry I got annoyed about my dorm being next to yours."

"Understand now, do you? Wanted to stay in your life, I did. Letting you go, I am not ready for."

"You've always been more like my father than my Master."

Yoda nods. "That is strong in you, also, I see."

After Yoda goes back to his dorm, Dooku can't sleep - the intensity of the day still wears on him - so he sits on his couch, reading. He feels Qui-Gon's presence in the Force. "Qui-Gon, what are you doing up?"

"I forgot to give you something."

Before Dooku can protest, Qui-Gon drops a flower crown on his head.

A couple of days later, Dooku dries the petals to preserve them, and they are among the few possessions he has when he leaves the Jedi Order for Serenno, just shy of fifty years later.

I wonder if he knew, or at least saw, and didn't quite understand what he was seeing. Dooku got up, straightened his shirt, and Sev took his hand. Then they were off.

_

The swearing-in ceremony was held at the capital building in Carannia, where all the nobles of Serenno met six times a year to discuss governance of the realm, including planned budgets, authorizing new permits, handling trade agreements, and the like. The capital building was staffed year-round by representatives from each noble House, who the commoners could meet with and petition, or schedule appointments to see the Count or Contessa who oversaw their state if the matter was urgent enough. The capital building was one floor, wide, a dark stone building with marble-tile inlays between frosted-glass windows and fluted marble pillars; the roof bore a statue of Serenn, the founder of Serenno, with a dove on each shoulder, carrying a rose bush - seven roses, one for each of her children, who became the founders of the first seven noble Houses. In front of the capital building was a large fountain that was lit up at night, and was a bit of a tourist attraction - it was rumored to be a wishing well, and Qui-Gon had long suspected that the fountain was a tiny Force nexus so there might be some truth to those rumors.

The entire family came to the ceremony, which included Han, who cleaned up nicely but looked like he felt very awkward about being made to dress up. Neryt gave him a sympathetic smile - she felt like the cape she was wearing hid her best assets. She'd compensated for it by showing cleavage with her black dress, and she noticed Ben, Dennis, and Reine all looking at it. If this had been just a few weeks ago, Irina likely would have protested the choice of attire, but Irina was wearing a slinky knee-length scoop-neck black dress where she herself showed a little cleavage underneath her brown cape, and she had on what Neryt jokingly called "come fuck me shoes" - strappy black sandals with heels. Irina's fingernails and toenails were painted a deep shade of wine red, with a slight bit of sparkle, matching rubies in her ears. Irina looked glamorous, sexy appropriate to her age - but those shoes were a bit scandalous where the Serennian nobles were concerned.

They were less scandalous than Severin's neck. Neryt giggled when she saw it.

Dooku stood beside Severin at the fountain, as the current Regent of Serenno, Contessa Alizara Demici, approached, wearing a dark red cape over a white pantsuit. Two Marchwardens followed behind her, one carrying a crown, the other carrying a sword.

"Count Idis Dooku, first of your line," the Contessa Demici said, "today you have been chosen to assume the role of Regent... guardian of Serenno... father of Serenno. Do you accept this responsibility?"

"I do," Dooku said.

The Contessa gestured, and Dooku knelt.

The Marchwarden bearing the sword approached - the sword had been brought to Serenno from Alderaan, ten thousand years ago, and Serenn's people had said it was even older than that, coming with the ancestors to Alderaan from wherever they had originated, deep in the Galaxy. It was a rapier design, long and slender, with a curved hilt. The Contessa took the sword from the Marchwarden.

"Do you swear by the Kalae to preserve our own, even to the cost of your own life?" she asked Dooku.

"I swear," Dooku said.

"Then by the Kalae, Serenno claims you as its chief servant." The Contessa touched the blade to Dooku's left shoulder, then to his right, then to the top of his head... before going to Dooku's outstretched hands and making a small cut, drawing blood, before the sword was placed in his hands. Dooku then drove the sword into the soil around the fountain, planted with Serennian wildflowers and roses.

The sword's blade began to glow red.

The Contessa's mouth opened, and so did several of the other nobles' - this was unprecedented. Dooku's own eyes widened, and he blinked slowly, a bit taken aback by the sight... and the feel of the Force coursing through the sword. This was no ordinary blade, but it had to be given to one such as him to be proven as such.

The other Marchwarden handed the crown to the Contessa - it was made with thorns from the first roses Serenn had planted on Serenno, that had been dipped into Serennian platinum, forever preserved. The Contessa placed the crown of silver thorns on Dooku's head - something he would only have to wear on holidays at public functions - and Dooku bowed his head with reverence.

Then Dooku rose to his feet, and the Counts and Contessas of the noble Houses of Serenno dropped to their knees, including Irina and Neryt. After a moment, the rest of Dooku's family knelt also.

Dooku cleared his throat. "When I was six, I was taken by the Jedi Order and left Serenno, and ten years later, I made a promise to a small boy that as soon as I was Knighted, he would be my first apprentice. I had many doubts about the job, and about my own ability to do the job, but I was now accountable to someone other than myself. In the time since I was Knighted at age twenty-two, and today where I stand before you now, a lot has happened. The Galaxy has fallen to pieces many times over. I am responsible for at least some of that mess. I still struggle with fear, and doubt. I am not perfect. But there is something I have now, that I did not have when I tried, and failed, in the past. Serenno is truly my home now, as opposed to just the world where I happened to be born, happened to have blood relations. I am invested in keeping this as my home. And I have a family. I have a wonderful husband-to-be who has helped me to put things in perspective... who I would kill to protect. I have adopted two sons and a daughter who will fight on my side, and I myself have an adopted father, whose counsel helped shape me, and whose counsel I seek once more as I attempt to preserve Serenno by working on fixing the broken Galaxy surrounding it. I have a safety net, woven of bonds of love... and because of it, this time, I will not break. I will not fail. I will be what our people need, both as citizens of Serenno... and citizens of the Galaxy. I will uphold the Serennian spirit of service, demonstrating it to our allies... as well as our foes, who need to be served justice. I will uphold your faith in me, I will do my best to make Serenno proud... to make the ancestors proud. This I have sworn, on my blood."

He gestured for those kneeling to rise, and then there was applause. Sev threw his arms around Dooku, and they kissed. Dooku blushed, and Sev kissed the tip of his nose. It was undignified, and Dooku didn't care. He was in charge now. The realm could keep its culture while dialing back the stuffiness a bit.

Dooku sheathed the ancient sword, and the sheath was clipped to his belt, alongside his lightsaber. Dooku made the rounds of shaking the hands of the Serenni nobles, receiving well-wishes, and then, at last, the ceremony was done. Dooku took off the crown of thorns and rubbed his head...

...and then Qui-Gon dropped a flower crown on him.

Dooku's eyes narrowed. Qui-Gon smiled trollishly. Sev cackled.

Dooku turned to Sev, and gave Sev the bitchface that he loved too well. Sev's grin got even bigger. "You look mahvelous," Sev teased him.

"So, are we still going to our celebration feast?" Qui-Gon asked. The family had reservations at the most exclusive and expensive restaurant in Carannia... and they were going straight from the capital building.

Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose and closed his eyes. "Yes, Qui-Gon."

Dooku reached to take off the flower crown, and then Sev slapped his hand. "He went to all the trouble to make that for you, you're wearing it to the restaurant," Sev said.

Qui-Gon beamed.

Dooku gave Sev a withering look, but he also knew that Qui-Gon's gift had answered his question, about what Qui saw or knew all those years ago... and he felt a bit guilty about wanting to take it off. With a sigh, he put the flower crown back on. Sev had a hand mirror and he got to see it - autumn roses, orange-red-and-gold, that looked like they were on fire, interspersed with violets and white baby's breath.

"It's a bit loud," Dooku said.

"Well, you know, my name means 'Fire-Rose' in Echani," Severin pointed out.

"Thank you for making him wear it," Qui-Gon said, cackling as he walked off to catch up with Obi-Wan.

"He doesn't make me -" Dooku's voice trailed off, and he looked ready to explode.

Sev bit his lower lip, shaking with silent laughter. Dooku glared at him again and huffed, and Sev cracked up laughing, leaning on Dooku to steady himself.

"That does it," Dooku said. He produced a small satchel from his belt, and opened it to pull out the Brat tiara... which he sat on Severin's head.

Sev grinned. "So can my official title be Brat Prince? Can this be a thing?"

_

The restaurant had arranged for a very large table, enough to sit all the adults and the children. Dooku started their meal by making a toast.

"To family," he said, "and finding home."

Sev raised his glass. "Salu," he said.

After Sev and Dooku took a sip of wine, they kissed.

"So speaking of home..." Neryt gave a small clear of her throat. She looked around nervously, and then she went on, "I have a little announcement to make."

Dooku gestured for her to go on.

"I'm going to be turning seventeen in two and a half weeks, and for the last couple of years I'd been planning on going back to Mandalore, to live, for my seventeenth birthday, since seventeen is the age when they consider you fully grown and they put you through the trials of adulthood. I would have come back to Serenno in two months to do the swoop tournament, and visit, before heading back to Mandalore. But... I've decided I'm staying on Serenno."

Irina applauded, and Sev did too.

Han raised an eyebrow. "Swoop riding, huh?"

Neryt nodded.

"I was into that when I was your age." Han sipped his wine. "I won a few tournaments myself."

"Yeah?" Neryt cocked her head to one side.

Han nodded.

"I joke around that it's in my DNA because Uncle Idis was really into swoop riding when he was around my age too," Neryt said.

Han snorted. "Well, I wouldn't know anything about that, because I don't really remember my parents much."

Reine's eyebrows went up. "Are you another one in the Dead Parents Club?"

"Maybe? I was left somewhere when I was six. I think I was six, anyway." Han frowned. "Maybe I was abandoned, maybe something happened to my mom, I don't know. My mom wasn't exactly attentive before that happened, and she was with a couple different guys so nobody was really my dad."

"Solo is an orphan's name on Corellia, yes?" Dooku asked.

Han nodded.

Reine said, "And you're Force-sensitive. Force sensitivity tends to run in families... so maybe you have some famous Jedi ancestor like it turns out I did."

Han shot her a look. "I highly doubt that."

"It might be worth a DNA test and comparing with the Jedi archives, right?" Reine looked at Jocasta, and Jocasta nodded.

"All of the Jedi who were taken in were blood typed and DNA tested," Jocasta said. "So if you did in fact have a relative in the Order, we could find that with a DNA comparison -"

"Could we not have this discussion?" Han finished his glass of wine.

"Well, Dad," Ben said, "I'm actually a bit curious to know if my extreme Force sensitivity is just a Skywalker thing or not."

Dennis sat back and steepled his hands. "You know... if it turned out that Han did have Jedi ancestry... essentially you and Kylo are the product of a mega-Force-dynasty... and if Snoke was tracking these things, as he was very clearly tracking our parents, and Reine and Finn's... he probably knew that and it was probably of very special interest to him."

Ben nodded. "That makes way too much sense."

Ben and Dennis looked at Han. Han looked down.

"It's just a DNA test," Sev said. Then he cackled. "If I find out you're another cousin of ours I'm gonna die."

Ari gave Sev a pointed look. "What's wrong with your cousins?"

"Nothing. Just... being reunited with ALLLLL the cousins is a little spooky." Sev sipped his wine.

Leia put a hand on Han's shoulder. "I think that the DNA test is a good idea, honey."

"Yeah, OK." Han shook his head and groaned. "Fine."

Then Leia said, "So on the subject of announcements... Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, and I would like to take our lifebond vows to each other next week."

Sev and Dooku applauded.

"We want it to be a very simple ceremony," Qui-Gon told them. "Family only."

"All right," Dooku said, nodding. "Will you at least be going on a bit of a honeymoon?"

"Yes, I've made arrangements at a cabin for a two-day getaway," Leia said.

"We wanted to get this done now before things escalate with CIS, because we don't know how much time we'll have for these sorts of celebrations and rituals," Qui-Gon said, "especially if some of us have to go on the front lines."

Dooku nodded. "Severin and I will be taking our own vows to each other in three weeks' time."

"Right around my birthday," Neryt said.

"Yes."

"Aaaaaaand that leads me to make an announcement too," Dennis said. "The day after tomorrow is Ben's birthday."

Ben facepalmed.

"What?" Dennis looked at Ben.

Ben sighed. "I... don't like making a big deal out of my birthday. Especially not..." Ben looked down. He sighed again. "After what I've done. I still feel like I don't deserve any of this."

Dennis put an arm around Ben.

"I killed my classmates," Ben said.

"They were torturing you. You told me yourself, you were afraid that the Republic would use them to strong-arm the Galaxy with occupations and genocide."

"That... still..." Ben shook his head. "I should have found another option. That saying, he who fights monsters..." Ben pinched the bridge of his nose. "Shit, I'm sorry." He looked at Dooku. "I'm ruining your special day."

"You're not ruining anything," Dooku told him. "I know firsthand what it's like to have blood on your hands, and regret it."

"It's something a few of us struggle with, I think," Malak said, sipping his wine.

"You're not alone, Ben." Dooku raised his glass to Ben. "You recognize your debt and you are trying to pay it. Just as I am. Just as Malak is. Self-flagellation into suicidal despair is not useful in times like these, when we are going to war to fight a greater evil than anything ourselves have ever done."

"Yeah." Ben looked away. Then he got up. "Will you excuse me?" He left the table.

After a minute Dennis took a deep breath and he got up, to go after Ben.

A few minutes later, Neryt finally gave into her gut instinct, and said, "I have to visit the little girls' room."

"You want me to go with you?" Reine asked.

Neryt mouthed the word "Ben" to Reine, and Reine mouthed back "oh OK" and then Neryt dabbed her mouth with a napkin and headed towards the refresher stations.

As this was a very exclusive restaurant, the refresher stations had a security guard. This was one of the few places on Serenno where a public restroom was not unisex, and as Neryt approached the men's room the security guard stopped her and said, "You can't go in there."

Neryt put her hand on his shoulder and said, "It is fine if I use the men's room."

The security guard blinked and then he repeated, "It is fine if you use the men's room," his voice sounding a bit slurred.

Neryt pushed ahead into the 'fresher. She could hear Ben crying in one of the stalls, with Dennis making a soothing noise.

Neryt used the Force to push the lock on the stall, and then once it was opened, to reveal Dennis holding Ben, Neryt put her arms around both of them. It felt like the right thing to do.

Dennis's eyes met Neryt's. Neryt could see that Dennis was on the verge of tears himself - he was a very strong empath, his empathy made stronger by his Force bond with his lover. Neryt took Dennis's hand in hers and squeezed it.

I know who you are, Dennis told her in the Force.

Neryt nodded. With her free hand, she began stroking Ben's hair. "Ben, do you remember Mission Vao?"

Ben looked up at her and blinked. "Yes, I do."

"Good." Neryt leaned in and kissed him.

Ben's eyes widened in shock, and then he closed them, groaning softly as his mouth yielded to Neryt's, their tongues slowly swirling, exploring... expressing ancient needs rediscovered. Dennis's hand cupped Neryt's ass and then his fingers stroked up her spine, before he took her chin in his hand and guided her face from Ben's, so he could kiss her too. Neryt moaned as Dennis's lips and tongue played on hers, exciting her even more. And then Dennis and Ben kissed, and Neryt bit her lip, giving a little whimper at how delicious they were together.

They both turned their heads to her, then, and their three tongues rubbed together in a playful open-mouthed kiss, and then Dennis started kissing Neryt's neck as Ben's mouth claimed hers. Neryt cried out into the kiss - her neck was exquisitely sensitive, and Ben's tongue was incredibly sensual. Her knees started shaking.

Then Ben began kissing the other side of her neck, and Dennis trailed kisses along her jaw before their mouths met again. Neryt found herself rubbing Dennis's chest and Ben's ass... and as Neryt's hand trailed lower, eventually it came to the hard bulge in Dennis's trousers. She could feel Ben's hard-on pressing against her as well.

"Fuck," Neryt gasped, her cunt twinging - she didn't bring dry panties with her.

"Do you want it?" Dennis asked.

"I..." Neryt swallowed. "I'm still a virgin."

Dennis and Ben looked at each other. "Well, shit," Dennis said. "You deserve better than your first time being in a refresher stall."

Neryt found herself both disappointed and touched at the same time.

"OK, let's... calm down," Ben said. "We can pick this up later."

"When you say later, what do you mean?" Neryt asked.

"Tonight? Tomorrow?"

Neryt bit her lip and then she said, "...How about your birthday? I'd like you to be my first, as your birthday present."

Ben let out a low whistle. "Holy fuck."

"See, the Force likes you," Dennis told him.

Ben gave Dennis a mock-annoyed look, and then they laughed, and Ben said to Neryt, "You sure?"

Neryt smiled and nodded. "I really like both of you."

"So you're not actually getting it on with Reine," Dennis said.

"Not yet. She offered and that will probably be a thing, but..." Neryt stroked Ben's face. "I'd like to take care of you first."

Ben kissed the tip of Neryt's nose. "That's very sweet of you."

"I want both of you, if that's all right," Neryt said.

"Oh, that's more than all right," Ben said. He smiled. "We'll take care of you, too."

The three of them embraced, and then proceeded to splash cold water on their faces and think about decidedly unsexy things, before going back out into the restaurant as nonchalantly as possible. Reine smirked when Neryt sat down.

What happened in there? Reine asked Neryt, in the Force.

We didn't make love, but.

But...

I'm giving Ben a very special birthday present. Neryt grinned into her wine glass.

_

When the meal and dessert were finished, the group lingered for awhile, drinking and talking, and then Ben and Dennis noticed Owen and Lysa were getting sleepy - likely the result of being given a small amount of wine - so they decided to head back to their villa, carrying Owen and Lysa out.

Dooku and Sev were the last to depart, with Dooku taking care of the check. Sev scavenged remaining bits of appetizers and dessert, before the serving droids came to clear the table.

Sev finally took Dooku's flower crown off. "I can't believe you wore that through the entire thing."

Dooku patted Sev's Brat tiara. "I can believe you wore yours through the celebration, however."

"I wear it proudly." Sev grinned.

"Yes, you are incorrigible, my dear." Dooku kissed Sev.

"It's probably a good thing you took the tiara and kept it with you... because I would have worn it at the coronation."

Dooku facepalmed.

"Or even better..." Sev's grin got bigger. "Put it on your head as retaliation for getting me all worked up this morning."

Dooku bitchfaced.

"Sometimes I think you can't get any brattier," Dooku told him, "and then you amaze me and raise the bar even higher."

"Well, it means our relationship will never be dull. Unpredictability is the spice of life."

"Yes, it is." And with that, Dooku bent Sev over the table, hiked up his cape, and used the Force to undo Sev's belt and yank down his trousers and panties. Dooku slapped Sev's ass, hard.

"Oh, Idis..." Sev shuddered.

Dooku spanked Sev again. "You naughty boy."

"Fuck, yes..." Sev bent even more into the table, so Dooku got a better view of his ass.

"Brat." Spank. "Horrid, incorrigible troll." Spank. "Even worse because you do this to incite punishment, don't you?"

"Yes, milord."

Spank. "So you're an insatiable little deviant as well." Spank.

"Oh, yes..." Sev wiggled his ass. "Please, more..."

Dooku spanked Sev harder and harder, until he felt like his own trousers would rip from how urgently his cock was tenting them. "Get undressed, brat."

"Right here?" Sev gestured out to the entryway leading from their suite to the rest of the restaurant, where some patrons were dining. "Right now?"

Dooku gave Sev a look. "I meant what I said."

Sev unhooked the clasp of his cape, letting it fall to the floor. He undid his vest, and then his shirt, and when he was naked, Dooku took a moment to ogle him hungrily, before he told Sev, "Get on the table."

Sev did. Dooku began to undress, and Sev watched with great interest, stroking his cock. The sight of Severin propped up on one elbow, pleasuring himself, intensified Dooku's arousal, but he gave his bondmate a bit of a show, undressing slowly, reveling in the way Sev's eyes devoured every inch of exposed flesh. When at last he was naked, he climbed onto the table, over Severin. He propped one of Sev's legs on his shoulder and used the Force to retrieve the lube they carried with them, pouring it over his cock and into Sev's ass. He began to tease Sev by pushing just the tip of his cock against Sev's channel, making Sev whimper as he claimed Sev's mouth with his.

The restaurant's host came back with Dooku's credits card and Dooku heard the gasp. "Your Grace," the host stammered, "this is -"

Dooku looked over his shoulder and waved his hand. "This is perfectly acceptable and you will let us be."

"This is perfectly acceptable and I will let you be," the host replied, before walking off.

Sev cackled. "Wow, Idis." He nibbled Dooku's shoulder, and Dooku responded by kissing Sev harder than before, with a growl.

"Now, where were we?"

"Mmmmmm." Sev kissed Dooku back. "You were about to put that delicious cock inside me."

"Oh, was I?" Dooku continued teasing Sev with just the tip. "And what makes you think a bratty boy like you deserves it?"

"Because his daddy wants it as bad as he does."

Dooku nipped Sev's lower lip. "What I want... is to hear you beg." He kissed Sev and then he trailed kisses along Sev's jaw, to lick and nibble up the shell of his ear, to the point, before he whispered, "I want you to beg loud enough for everyone in the restaurant to hear you."

Sev's eyes widened, and Dooku watched with a smile as precum leaked down the head of Sev's cock, dripping over the shaft. He followed the trail with his finger, making Sev twitch and moan, and continued teasing Sev's opening with the head of his cock. "Well, little one?" Dooku stroked Sev's face.

"Please, Master, fuck me..." Sev wailed.

"That's good..." Dooku kissed Sev's chin, and then his neck. He nibbled and licked at Sev's neck before kissing that sweet spot where the neck met the shoulder, and he husked, "We both know you can be louder."

"Please, Idis, FUCK ME." Sev kissed Dooku again. He yelled, "Please, Idis... please, Daddy... take me, ream my bratty ass with that big, beautiful cock... give it to me hard... show me who's in charge... make me your fucktoy, your whore... please, fucking FUCK ME... PLEASE..."

Dooku growled and pushed into Sev - he was still open from all of the fucking he'd gotten last night - and Sev cried out, digging his nails into Dooku's back right away.

Dooku began to pound into him, not caring about dignity and decorum... only caring about lust. Passion. He had spent an entire lifetime chained to responsibility, playing by the rules... now that he was shouldering more responsibility, he also felt he had the right to be unfettered. It was time to have a life worth fighting for. Severin made him feel truly alive... and there was no greater act of feeling that vitality than in taking him, fucking him, the dance of spirit and flesh, sacred and profane.

"Yes yes yesyesyes fuck me, FUCK ME..." Sev's nails raked down Dooku's back. His legs were wrapped around Dooku, their hips slamming together in time. "Fuck me, Daddy..."

"You naughty boy." Dooku nibbled Sev's neck. "Letting yourself be taken like this, in a public place... making your Master want to take you in a public place..."

"Fuck, yes, fuck I'm such a slut for you..."

Dooku kissed Sev hard. "And you're going to be a messy slut." He took Sev's cock in his hand, stroking it vigorously. "I'm going to make you come all over this dining room."

Sev screamed into the next kiss, as Dooku pushed Sev back all the way and then rose, kneeling over Sev with Sev's legs on his shoulders, one hand working Sev's cock, the other playing down his body. "So beautiful," Dooku said softly. "Can't resist you..."

"Oh, Idis..." Sev's hands reached up to caress Dooku's hairy thighs, over his hips, the sculpted abs, fingers playing in his white chest hair. "You're so fucking hot. My wolf."

"This wolf is hungry for you."

"Yes... take all you want..."

And then Sev couldn't make words, only sob, as the hand playing over his body reached to cup and rub his balls. Dooku knew Sev's body too well now, what he liked, how he liked it, and he knew massaging Sev's balls would contribute to an incredibly intense orgasm. "I want to make you come hard," Dooku told him. "If we're going to be out of control... let's be out of control all the way."

Sev screamed, thrashing back and forth, hands fisting the tablecloth.

Dooku began to tease Sev by going between playing with Sev's balls and his hand roaming other places - like Sev's nipples. When Dooku felt Sev's balls tighten, getting dangerously close to orgasm, Dooku collected Sev's precum on his fingers, and stuck his fingers in Sev's mouth. His palm pressed on Sev's throat.

"Come for me," he commanded.

Sev let loose, shrieking with his mouth full, and when Dooku withdrew his fingers Sev howled so loud everyone in the restaurant most certainly could hear it. Dooku gave into his own orgasm with a cry, letting out a higher-pitched cry as he watched Sev's cock spray cum all over the ceiling and wall, as well as Dooku's own body. He collapsed onto Sev, shuddering, his climax throbbing so intensely it almost hurt. Sev laughed, between the euphoric rush of his release and seeing the mess he'd made.

"Holy fuck," Sev gasped. "Wow."

"Shit." The swear just slipped out, which made Sev laugh even harder. "That's... impressive."

"I hope you're going to leave a very generous tip."

"I always tip generously."

Then Sev and Dooku cracked up laughing at the innuendo, considering their sex had started with Dooku teasing Sev with the tip of his cock. "Mmmmm, all of it is pretty generous," Sev purred.

Dooku rolled his eyes, and then kissed Sev's nose. "But yes, my dear, I will go above and beyond my usual generosity to compensate for..." He gestured to the wall.

They cuddled for a few minutes and then Dooku helped Sev climb off the table, since it wasn't conducive to laying on for long periods of time. They got dressed, and made their way out of the suite into the main dining hall, feeling a bit sheepish as they passed by the few other patrons dining.

Before they could leave the dining hall to see the host for the tip, they got a standing ovation.

Chapter Text

Dooku had made an appointment to hold a summit with the other government leaders of the D'Astan Sector and several other former Separatist holdouts around the Outer Rim, the day after his swearing-in as Regent of Serenno. He and Severin woke up bright and early, and as Dooku meditated, Sev made coffee and tended to the cats. Pumpkin was now in the final stages of her pregnancy - it had been almost two months to the day following conception - and waddled as she walked. Sev had been feeding Pumpkin more food than usual to compensate for the pregnancy, but as he put food out he noticed Pumpkin refused it, which was a sign she would be going into labor any day now.

Sev sat down and tried to meditate, but a few minutes into the meditation, he began to have an asthma attack.

For the last almost-three months that Sev and Dooku had been together, Sev's asthma had been much better - Sev attributed it to meditating more regularly and doing Force Heal on himself. His asthma was usually aggravated by stress, and during his escape from the Finalizer, where he'd had a full panic attack on the TIE fighter, his asthma had stayed under control.

Here and now, it was as if all of the asthma attacks Severin hadn't had over the last two months, were finally hitting him all at once. Dooku's concentration was broken as he watched Sev choke on the couch, struggling to breathe, struggling to use the Force both to calm his lungs and retrieve his inhaler. Dooku used the Force to grab Sev's inhaler and brought it over, one hand holding it to Sev's mouth, the other hand on his shoulder, holding him steady, giving reassuring rubs. Sev took a few deep puffs, and after some more intense wheezing, there was less intense wheezing, and then labored breath.

Dooku stroked Sev's face. He could feel his bondmate's anxiety, close to panic, in their Force bond.

Sev also felt embarrassed about it. "Kylo Ren tried to get me to kill my own brother, I didn't freak out like this... it doesn't make sense."

"I think I understand what's going on." Dooku pet Sev's curls. "The meeting I'm about to go to... it makes all of this official. The war against the First Order. The war against the Republic. Since we fled to Serenno, we've had a lot of down time, which has contributed to a false sense of security. Today brings the imminent threat back into focus, and we know there can only be moving forward from this point. Forward into war. Forward into the unknown. I can see how that would cause you anxiety, even if you are the avatar of the Force deity of war and destruction."

"Could we not use the word 'deity'? I'm an atheist. 'Advanced Force being' is fine." Sev had an additional layer of discomfort, realizing that his father's people, the Echani, probably venerated him.

"All right."

"Additionally, there isn't any 'even if' with this. Now that you helped me figure it out... I think it's precisely because of... whatever the fuck I am... that I'm feeling like this. All... keyed up. It's like the Force itself knows just how awful both the First Order and the New Republic are - worse than any of us know, and this is with all we uncovered about the First Order - and the Force thinks we can't move forward fast enough to spare innocent lives. And that scares the shit out me."

"Well... we are only doing what we can," Dooku said. "None of this is being built overnight. As it is, we are still getting the Resistance properly outfitted for more aggressive actions against the First Order."

Pookie hopped on Sev's lap, and gave a concerned chirp. Sev skritched Pookie's head, and the black-and-white cat settled into Sev's arms, putting a possessive "paw of ownership" on Sev's arm that flexed contentedly to the rhythm of his purring. Dooku gave Pookie a few pettings as well.

"Malak and Leia are coming with me to the summit," Dooku said, "and I would suggest doing something to distract yourself until I return."

"All right." Sev nodded. He looked at Pookie. "What do you think?" Sev waited a minute and then he said, "Pookie thinks I should get this suite ready for his sister's kittens."

"That's a good idea."

_

When Reine stumbled out of the 'fresher, Malak was right there, his arms folded.

"I'm calling Sev," he said.

"Give it one more day," Reine said. "If I'm still feeling like this tomorrow morning, then you can bother your brother."

"Honey, if you're sick, it's no bother to him. He's a physician. This is what he does."

"I'm not that sick." Reine had another dry heave, and rushed back into the 'fresher. As she knelt before the bowl, Malak knelt behind her, holding her hair back.

A few minutes passed without incident, and Malak helped Reine up, and then he turned her around to face him, cupping her chin in his hand so she would have to look up at him.

"I don't understand why you're being so stubborn about seeing a doctor," Malak said to her.

"The irony of you calling me stubborn." Reine's lips quirked.

Malak gave her a playful swat on the ass, which made Reine wink at him, and then he swatted her ass again for good measure. She responded by pinching his ass.

"I'm not dying, Malak."

Malak gave her a sad face.

Reine laughed. "Honey. Baby. It's just a little nausea and vomiting. I probably ate something that didn't agree with me. I otherwise feel fine, if a tiny bit tired."

"We won't actually know what it is until you ask my brother."

"And I don't think this is bad enough to ask him."

Malak sighed. "What if you're wrong? What if you have some kind of plague?" Malak pinched the bridge of his nose. "Back in the Old Republic days, I had to destroy Taris and Telos IV because Valkorion engineered a virus - with Sith alchemy, no less - that reanimated corpses, except now the corpses had a hunger for humanoid flesh. When someone living was bitten, they'd feel like they had the flu, and their symptoms would start off like yours, and they'd succumb to a very high fever."

"Except I'm pretty sure no corpses bit me recently. Just you."

"I didn't say it would be exactly like the old virus. But after everything we found out about the First Order, including and especially that Snoke is Valkorion? I'm completely fucking paranoid now. If Kylo knew we were going to find out about the Bando Gora connection to the Restorers and have the New Force Order shut down, and he'd been planning that all along so he could make the resurrected Jedi and Sith disappear... if in fact he and Anakin had planned their resurrection so he could do that and keep them out of the reincarnation pool as less people getting in the way of their plans... if he'd been planning on betraying us all along to get me to turn against him and fight him so the New Republic would have something to fear more than the First Order... then he had to also know we were going to Serenno, and I can't help but wonder if he sent us off with some kind of 'parting gift'. So you getting sick like this, as we're about to have the Separatist summit... it alarms me, to say the least." Malak's eyes teared up. "I lost my best friend, who I mistakenly believed was like a brother to me, and had my back... yeah, he had my back so he could put a fucking lightsaber through it. I can't lose you too."

Malak broke down crying.

Reine threw her arms around him, and marched him out to the living room couch. They sat and she held him, rocked him.

"You're not losing me," Reine assured him.

"I don't know that. I don't know that rotten fucker didn't do something to you..." Malak's voice trailed off and he sobbed again, brokenly.

Reine sighed. She kissed Malak's tears and then she said, "OK, fine. I'll call Sev and ask him to come by while you're at the summit."

After Malak left, Reine gave Sev a holocall. Sev answered on the third ring.

"Reine! Hey, what's up?"

"Not much." Reine pursed her lips. "So... I hate to bother you, but I think I've got a little stomach bug and Malak is really getting on my case about seeing a doctor."

"OK, I'll be down in just a bit."

When Sev arrived, Reine made him coffee, and then Sev proceeded to give Reine a physical, checking her vital signs with a tricorder and feeling her glands, testing her reflexes, examining eyes, ears, nose, and throat. Reine described her symptoms and finally Sev asked, "Um, when was your last menstrual period?"

"Oh." Reine's eyes widened, and then she gave Sev a confused look. "It was when we were still on Arcturus. I think it was maybe six weeks ago? So I'm a little late, but I'm sometimes late for my period when I'm stressed out, and this whole going-to-war thing has been pretty stressful."

Sev drew Reine's blood, and after a few minutes the tricorder beeped, letting Sev know the analysis was ready. He laughed as he read it. "Well, it looks like I'm gonna be an uncle."

Reine's jaw dropped.

"Congratulations!" Sev hugged Reine. "That explains why you've been having nausea and vomiting in the morning. It's morning sickness, a very common pregnancy symptom."

"Holy shit." Reine took a deep breath.

"This is great!"

Reine frowned. "We're about to go to war. Only the Force knows how bad it's going to get. I don't know if this is worth celebrating."

Sev also frowned.

Reine folded her arms. "I want to want this child. I wouldn't say I don't want it. I've often daydreamed about what it would be like to be a mother and have Malak's children. But right now, today, I feel almost like I'm being irresponsible by bringing another life into this Galaxy when I have no idea if Serenno will even exist or my husband will even be alive in three months, if I won't be on the run trying to hide from Kylo Ren."

"Well, that's your decision to make, since you're the one carrying the child. How you feel is understandable." Sev nodded. "But if you decide to keep it... I swear to you, as your brother-in-law, if anything happens to my brother, I will look out for you and help you raise the child. I'll help anyway, because we're family - just like everyone is there if Dennis and Ben need help with Owen and Lysa."

"I appreciate that." Reine nodded. "And I'll talk to Malak about it later."

"OK." Sev hugged Reine again. "Whatever decision you guys make, Idis and I will support you... but really, Sith fight better when it's personal, and I think that knowing a child is on the way is going to give Malak something to fight for, other than his wounded pride. And you're pretty fierce too - I'd hate to get on your bad side now, never mind when those pregnancy hormones kick in all the way. The First Order better watch out."

"Thank you, Sev." Reine kissed his cheek. "I'm glad you're my brother-in-law."

"Yeah. I'm glad my brother has you."

_

After the meeting, Dooku, Malak and Leia returned to the palace for a discussion with what they termed the War Council - Severin, Dennis, Reine, Ben, Han, Poe, Sifo-Dyas, Obi-Wan, Mace, and Yoda. Han brought Threepio and Artoo to the banquet hall, and Threepio assumed butler duties, providing snacks and refreshments to the group. When he came to Malak, he once again asked, "Care for a beverage, Lord Meatbag?" as he had at Leia's birthday party. Threepio had called everybody else by their names, which meant Ben had programmed the droid to call Malak and only Malak "meatbag".

Malak glared at Ben, who cackled.

After everyone was situated, Dooku began the meeting.

"There are some things that the other prospective member worlds want to see before they're willing to sign our charter and go forward," Dooku said. "The second part of the summit is tomorrow morning at the capital, and I need to give them some answers."

"All right." Obi-Wan nodded.

"The first is that we're going to need a few member states from outside the Outer Rim. The Baron D'Asta and the other government officials I spoke with want the Commonwealth to be taken seriously, and unfortunately there exists a bit of a prejudice in the Galaxy that the Outer Rim is not particularly worth caring about. If we have some members in the Mid-Rim, we look more put together... and it may inspire other worlds from around the Galaxy to join us."

"Suffered under the Empire, Kashyyyk did," Yoda spoke up. "Good relations with the Wookiees, I have. Speak well of you, Chewbacca would. Membership, they might consider."

Dooku nodded. "The Wookiees are also formidable warriors, and they would make a fine asset to the Commonwealth's military."

Sev ran a hand through his curls. "My brothers and I are half-Echani. We were born on Eshan and lived there until age six. One of my aunts - Finn and Reine's grandma - was a Senator. Eshan is a warrior culture. If we could convince the Echani that CIS is on the right side of justice... they just might be willing to fight with us."

"You haven't been back to your homeworld since you left twenty-three years ago, have you?"

Sev shook his head.

"Well... this is worth a field trip."

Dennis cleared his throat. "Neryt tells me Jango Fett was resurrected by the Restorers."

"I heard that as well, yes." Dooku nodded.

"He's also become the Mand'alor. The Mandalorian population is huge - in the hundreds of billions - spanning Mandalore and colonies around the Galaxy. If you could convince your old ally to be your ally once more... we would have the ferocity of Mando warriors, and we would have enough numbers to make the First Order start to sweat."

"The Echani have no great love for the Mandos, or vice versa," Sev said.

"No, but I think given what's at stake here, they could put their differences aside, knowing they won't even have cultures worth arguing about if there's another Empire." Dennis frowned.

Malak started laughing.

Dooku looked at Malak and raised an eyebrow.

Malak shook his head, chuckling, and said, "Ohhhh... back in the day, when Revan and I went to war against the Mandalorians... and now we're talking about recruiting the Mandalorians to fight both the First Order and the New Republic."

Ben laughed too. "Yeah, that is quite ironic."

"We also have a bargaining chip in that Jango's resurrection means he is in fact at least mildly Force-sensitive - which I suspected when I recruited him, and my suspicion was right." Dooku gave a small, predatory smile. "The Mando'a are a bit superstitious about the Force - most of them view Force-users as inherently unlucky."

"From a certain point of view that isn't entirely wrong," Obi-Wan said. "We have a tendency of getting murdered."

"Yes." Dooku sighed. "So... while I find blackmail distasteful, and would rather Jango bring the Mandalorians into the Commonwealth of his own volition... I am prepared to threaten exposure of his Force-sensitivity if he doesn't see the logic of joining us."

"I have one request," Ben said.

Dooku gestured to Ben.

"If and when we go to Mandalore, I'd like to be the one to negotiate with him," Ben said. "I know you and he have the history... but when I was Revan, I knew him as Canderous Ordo, aka Mandalore the Preserver. And just like all of us around here have been remembering who we were, once upon a time, I think it's safe to say that he has an idea of who he was. From my understanding of Galactic history, the Mandalorians in fact had a prophecy that Mandalore the Preserver would be reborn, and he would be 'father to millions' - Jango Fett fits that prophecy. Canderous had gone from being my worst enemy during the Mandalorian Wars, to one of my strongest allies - and Jango should be reminded of this, but it should be me to do that reminding."

"All right." Dooku nodded.

"You just want to impress Neryt," Dennis joked.

"That's an added bonus." Ben grinned.

"Speaking of 'fathering millions'," Dooku said, "I was informed that Jango instated a law of return for the clones and their descendants."

"Oh, thank fuck," Sifo-Dyas said. "Because of that, I also would like to go to the negotiations."

Dooku nodded. "I think we'll all go to Kashyyyk, Eshan, and Mandalore, or at least most of us in this room will go. It will be a bit of a vacation for us."

"So between the Wookiees, the Echani, and the Mandalorians," Malak said, "we're going to have quite an army."

"Yes, and the Echani have been good citizens of the Republic long enough that if we can convince them to finally secede - they came very close to it during the original Separatist Crisis - then other Republic loyalists may bow out as well." Dooku steepled his hands.

"Wouldn't that just be terrible." Malak rolled his eyes.

"I told the Resistance that the CIS charter would be going live on the Holonet in a month, one week ago, so this gives us three weeks to plan everything." Dooku sipped his brandy and sat back. "I think that after Leia, Obi, and Qui take their lifebond vows and have a couple of days at the cabin they reserved, we'll go on our trip - Eshan, Kashyyyk, and Mandalore are all conveniently within a few hours of each other at hyperspace. We can visit those three worlds and be back in time for my wedding to Severin."

Leia nodded. "That'll work."

"Looks like Neryt will get to go to Mandalore for her seventeenth birthday after all, even if she's not staying," Ben said.

"Yes, funny how that works out," Dooku said. Then Dooku went on, "I'm going to need somebody to mind my interests here on Serenno while I'm away trying to convince these three worlds to join our cause; the Mandalorians in particular will insist that I go." He looked in the direction of the Jedi. "Irina knows the ins and outs of Serenno politics and Mace, if you'd be willing to lend your military experience to that... you will be in charge. Qui and Obi, you should also stay here because Qui-Gon is Singer, and Obi, you also have enough experience with military matters that if Force forbid something should come up, I trust you to engage the enemy."

Obi nodded. "It would be my pleasure."

Sifo raised his hand. "I'm interested in going on the Mandalore trip to meet the repatriated clones and their descendants, but I'd otherwise rather not be gone that long - Jocasta and I have our part of the orchard and the goats to take care of and I know we could get servants to look after things, but just the same..."

Dooku nodded. "If you want to arrange transport to meet us on Mandalore, that would be fine."

"Thank you."

Dooku smiled. "It pleases me to see how well you and Jocasta have settled in here."

Sifo also smiled. "It's done us a lot of good. I've slept the best I have in years. Which is strange, considering we're about to go to war very soon. I'd normally be plagued with insomnia, or have nightmares every time I sleep. Serenno is really... special."

Dooku nodded. "You've finally come home."

Sifo came over and gave Dooku a hug. "We should get around to that blood-brother adoption sometime before you leave."

"Yes, we should." Then Dooku looked over his shoulder. "But tomorrow night we're having a birthday celebration, yes?"

Ben rolled his eyes. "Yeah... I've conceded to a special dinner and a cake, but I otherwise want to keep things low-key."

"That's the polite way of saying 'nobody wants to see Yoda work the stripper pole again'," Sev said.

"Except Chewbacca." Yoda smiled.

"Ye Force." Dooku cringed. "Yes, I think we'll pass on the pole dancing this time."

"It's all right because I'm giving Ben a private show," Dennis said, leering. "But..." He cleared his throat again. "There is something I want to give him, in front of the rest of you."

Han made a Wookiee noise.

Dennis laughed, and then he went on, "When we were still on Arcturus, Ben and I talked about me formally collaring him as my submissive. We'd like to do the collaring ceremony tomorrow night, after dinner, before we take off to the villa for that private celebration. So those of you who want to witness me collaring Ben, there will be a ritual in the dungeon here."

Dooku nodded. "I approve of that idea." He looked at Sev, who smiled adoringly.

"So is there any other business to discuss?" Sifo asked.

"Yes." Dooku sipped the rest of his brandy. "There was one other thing that the other prospective member states want us to take care of before we go forward."

After a pause, Dooku continued. "As you all know, I have no intention or desire to be head of state for the entire Galaxy. I am aware that I have a counterpart in another universe who is Chancellor of its Imperial Galactic Republic - this is also an iteration where I won the Clone Wars and did not have a traumatic death. Here and now, what I am doing with the Commonwealth is means to an end. Once we have taken Coruscant, I will help set up a new government in line with my ideals, and I can certainly serve on the sidelines as an advisor once it is in place... but I do not want to be Emperor, Chancellor, or anything of the like. My position as head of the Commonwealth is to get you to where you need to go. It happens that our prospective member states know this, and they have no problem with that... but they very much want to know who is going to be head of state when I step back... and they want that matter resolved before they agree to stand with us."

"So in other words, we have to decide who our future Chancellor is going to be, right now," Sev said.

Dooku nodded.

"Why not Leia?" Han asked.

Leia took a deep breath. "Because I was Chancellor of the New Republic, and then one of its Senators. While our prospective members understand I tried very hard to avoid the mistakes of the Old Republic and provide less room for corruption... it still happened. And you know... I'm better at military than I am at government. I find kicking ass more satisfying than politics."

Han snorted. "Don't we all."

"So," Leia said, "I'm not going to be Chancellor."

Han looked at Dooku. "It's a shame you're not going to keep holding the reins after we topple the Republic, because the best people to hold a position of power are those who don't want it. They're less likely to be corrupted by it."

Dooku smirked at Han. "It's a shame you're not willing to take the job, for that same reason."

"OH HELL NO." Han glared. "No. NO."

"It would still be fucking funny," Malak said. "Kylo would shit himself."

"OK, Mr. Funny Man," Han said, "what about you? You're head of our military and if I recall correctly you were Sith Emperor four thousand or so years ago."

Now it was Malak's turn to bitchface. "Yeah, and that ended so well. I don't fucking need that aggravation again, no thank you."

"Well," Ben spoke up, "Dad has some points."

Everyone looked at Ben. He took a deep breath and went on, "Whoever becomes head of state once we take Coruscant should be someone who doesn't really actually want the job, because they get what a headache that kind of power is, and thus they're far less likely to be corrupted and plague the Galaxy with the same old bullshit we keep going through over and over again whether it's Empire or Republic. Mom has political experience but the New Republic is too fresh of a failure. The other two people who have the kind of experience where the member states would have confidence in their leadership abilities are Dooku and Malak. Dooku gets a pass on wanting to retire because he's old... but you, Malak, you're, what, gonna be thirty?"

"In a month," Malak said, nodding.

"So you not only have this past lifetime of experience running things, that you remember, but you also represent a younger generation. One that can get fired up about making this Galaxy a better place to live in. Most of the First Order is under thirty-five for that reason - youthful energy and enthusiasm. And people tend to like you - you're kind and helpful. You've got the charisma to be the face of our cause. And since you're currently the head of our military, people love a war hero. They're even more likely to be loyal to our new government with you as its head if you walk in looking like you saved the Galaxy."

"I agree with everything Ben said," Dooku said. "In fact, part of the reason why I installed you as the Supreme Commander of our military was because I was hoping you'd be willing to eventually take the job as head of state for all these reasons."

"All these reasons and more." Ben gave Malak a pointed look. "In the timelines where I was Revan, and other Bens were Revan... we killed you, effectively ending your Empire. I took something from you. Let me help you get it back." Ben stood up. "I wasn't just sent here because the Force wanted me to find my family again... I wasn't just sent here to stop Kylo Ren... I was sent here because I owe you a debt. You were my best friend, four thousand years ago, and I betrayed you. Telling you 'I'm sorry' won't make it better. Fighting for you as our Galaxy's rightful ruler, the once and future Emperor... is something I can do, and will do. I swear this on my honor, I swear this on my life." Ben withdrew his crossguard lightsaber and ignited it, the blade glowing blue. He dropped to his knees before Malak and Makashi saluted him, with the blade held between Ben's closed eyes. "I swear this on my sword, which I pledge in your service."

Dooku rose to his feet. "I went the way of the Sith because of your example, Malak. The Galaxy was just and prosperous when you were its Emperor. I owe you a debt because you inspired me to be the Sith that I am today, and I would gladly help put you back in the power I know you will wield judiciously, to fix what is broken." He ignited his curved-hilt lightsaber, and gave the Makashi salute before he knelt, holding the blade upright in respect.

Han sighed, and then he also rose to his feet, took out his own crossguard lightsaber, ignited the red blade, and dropped to his knees, saluting Malak with it.

Sev, Reine, and Dennis followed. Poe didn't have a lightsaber, but he also knelt, which surprised Malak.

When everyone was on their knees, saluting Malak with their drawn lightsaber, Malak yelled, "Oh, for fuck's sake, fine, yes, you win."

Sev and Dennis dragged Malak to his feet, and Malak saluted everyone with his own Sith lightsaber. Then everyone turned their lightsabers off.

"This is excellent news," Threepio said. "You will make a fine leader, Chancellor Meatbag."

Malak glared at the droid, and then at Ben. Ben cracked up laughing.

"C'mere, you shit," Malak said, hauling Ben to his feet. He hugged Ben and then put him in a headlock, giving him a noogie.

_

After the meeting Dooku went to see his sister to inform her she would be acting Regent when he went off-world in a week's time. Owen and Lysa were with Jocasta, and Ben went to pick them up; Sev brought Dennis back to his suite so Dennis could visit with the cats.

On the way down, Sev and Dennis passed by Neryt, who was about to head out.

"Hey there," Neryt said, smiling.

"Hey, beautiful," Dennis said, making Neryt giggle. "Where you off to?"

"Running a few errands in town." Neryt bit her lower lip. "We still on for tomorrow night?"

"Yes." Dennis kissed Neryt's hand, and then after a minute he leaned in and kissed her. Neryt threw her arms around him, kissing him eagerly, and Dennis pushed her against the wall, kissing her harder, which made Neryt moan into the kiss, her fingers running through his hair and then down his spine. Dennis gave a little growl as he nibbled on her neck before kissing it, making Neryt whimper, and then he gave her a softer kiss before he pulled away, breathing heavy, flushed, eyes glazed.

"Fuck," Neryt panted, and laughed. She fanned herself, and Dennis smiled.

"I will see you tomorrow." Dennis gave Neryt a little wave and a wink; Neryt blew him a kiss.

"WELP." Sev took Dennis's hand, laughing on their way to the suite. "It's nice to see you two getting along."

"Yeah." Dennis gave a small, shy smile. Then once they were in Sev and Dooku's suite, Dennis looked more serious.

"Ah, shit. What's wrong?" Sev asked. He gestured for Dennis to sit down, and he poured them some juice.

"Well..." Dennis ran a hand through his hair. Sev sat down next to him, and Dennis took a sip of the fruit juice before going on. "I wouldn't call it wrong, necessarily, but..."

"But..."

Dennis took a deep breath. "I just... want to make sure I'm in the right here."

Sev cocked his head to one side.

"She's going to be seventeen in a couple weeks. We're gonna be thirty in a month."

"Fifteen and sixteen is legal age on almost all worlds in this Galaxy, including this one. She's a consenting adult." Sev's eyebrows raised. "Aaaaaand she's definitely a biological adult."

"And she's a young adult. I just..." Dennis scratched his head. "I don't want to take advantage of her or make her feel like she's... being taken advantage of."

Sev leaned back on the couch and sipped his juice before continuing. "If this were someone else, like some random chick on Corellia, I'd be inclined to agree with you. But we're not just anybody. Neryt especially isn't just anybody - she's Dooku's niece, and Dooku has said she reminds him of himself at that age with her brashness and thrill-seeking. Nobody tells her what to do, so I don't really get the feeling that she's going along with this thing with you and Ben because she feels she has to for some reason."

"The other thing is, I can tell Ben really likes her - I really like her, too, but Ben is... quite taken with her... but if this is just a phase, I don't want his heart getting broken -"

Sev shook his head. "Again... if this were some random chick this would be a valid concern, but Neryt has the Force. Relationships for Force users are very different. We tend to be more selective about our partners and we bond much deeper with them, with all of the telepathy and empathy and energy exchange involved. Neryt may not have a lot of life experience but she's mature for her age. Now is also a good time to remind you that if she hadn't been killed at the end of the Clone Wars with the Cleansing of Serenno, she and Han Solo would be the same age, Han was born just a few months before her... and I kind of get that 'old soul' feeling from her. Some of which can, of course, be attributed to the fact that she likely knew some of us from before -"

"She did. She was a Twi'lek named Mission Vao, who became Revan's companion and then one of my lovers as well, towards the end."

Sev nodded. "And if she's aware of this... this isn't going to be some frivolous fling for her where she decides in two months she's bored."

Dennis nodded. "I suppose you're right."

"You know I'm right. You're a powerful empath. You feel how she feels for you and Ben. Hell, I can feel all of it from the three of you. This is right. The three of you belong together." Sev finished his juice and then he cocked his head to one side like a curious cat. "But this isn't really about Neryt's age, is it?"

Dennis said nothing.

Sev folded his arms. "This is about how the last time you were in a triad with another guy, sharing a girlfriend - which would be us and Joxa - it went very, very badly."

Dennis sighed.

"And you're worried that if things end, somehow, it's going to fuck up your relationship with Ben, like how things got weird with you and me after we kicked Joxa out of our lives."

Dennis sighed again.

"Getting warmer?"

"As hot as an erupting volcano." Dennis looked off to the side, and then he met his brother's eyes. "Yes. This is... I want it, but I won't lie, there's this 'where have we seen this before?' feeling and..."

Sev nodded. He took Dennis's hands in his. "Well... the good news is, we did eventually find our way back to each other." And then he leaned forward and kissed Dennis. Dennis groaned and kissed him back, feeling that old surge of desire.

They kissed again, and Sev kissed Dennis's jaw, rained kisses down his neck, and then back up to his ear, drawing the sensitive pointy tip into his mouth, making Dennis gasp and cry out.

"You didn't quite bring me here to see the cats, did you?" Dennis chuckled.

"I did," Sev said, "but I had other things on my mind as well." He nibbled his way back to Dennis's jaw and then claimed his mouth again. Dennis moaned into the kiss and his hand reached for the bulge in Sev's trousers, rubbing.

"I wonder what other things you had on your mind." Dennis smiled and now it was his turn to kiss Sev's neck, which made Sev shudder and growl.

Sev's response was to start undoing Dennis's belt.

When they had stripped, Sev used the Force to bring over the lube - he was keeping their sex to the couch - and Dennis hastily poured lube over his cock, stroking it. He and Sev kissed as he probed Sev's ass with slick fingers. In a time of uncertainty and fear, the old way of giving each other comfort was very welcome. Dennis ogled his brother's naked body appreciatively before Sev straddled Dennis's lap and eased down onto his cock.

They both gasped as they felt that first moment of connection - Sev's body holding Dennis's inside his most intimate place - and they kissed hard and hungry. Dennis cradled Sev's head in his hands as Sev ran his fingers through Dennis's chest hair, slowly riding him.

"I love you," Sev told him, looking into Dennis's grey eyes with tenderness.

"I love you." Dennis stroked Sev's cheek. "Always have." They kissed. "Always will."

Dennis wrapped his arms around Sev and they kissed deeper, as Sev continued his slow ride, the two men groaning and grunting with every push and pull, the sweet sensations of Sev's ass gripping and stroking Dennis's cock, and Dennis's cock rubbing Sev's prostate. They kissed again and again, holding each other, their act of love weaving that magic circle around them as it had years ago, making them feel safe, knowing no matter where they went and what happened, they had each other's back, and they were always home where the other was.

When Dennis started working Sev's cock in his fist, Sev rode him harder, digging his nails into Dennis's sides, making Dennis moan as the pleasure-pain of stinging flesh rang through him. He playfully slapped Sev's ass, and Sev bit Dennis's lower lip, riding even harder.

"Your cock is so good," Sev moaned.

"Your ass is fucking good." Dennis shuddered. "I've missed fucking you like this."

"We still got it." Sev kissed him hard. "She couldn't take this away from us. I'm still yours. Just like Ben is yours."

Dennis kissed Sev even harder. "Mmmmmm..."

Then Dennis slapped Sev's ass again. "And you're Dooku's, too. I wonder what he's gonna do to you when he finds out you were fucking your brother again..."

"He's gonna show me how hard Daddy can fuck me." Sev shivered, and Dennis nipped Sev's neck with a growl. Sev bounced on Dennis as hard as he could, and Dennis worked Sev's cock furiously, his hips bucking as he could from a seated position, one arm around Sev to steady him. "Fuck," Sev sobbed.

"Oh, fuck yeah." Dennis bit his lower lip and closed his eyes, then opened them, heat in his gaze as his eyes locked with his brother's. "You bad boy."

"The worst." Sev kissed Dennis and they both groaned into the kiss.

Dennis slapped Sev's ass again. "Such a nasty little boy."

"Mmmmhmmmm." They kissed again.

Then Sev clawed at Dennis's chest, eyes pleading as Dennis jerked Sev's cock so hard it made a rattling sound. "You want to come for me?" Dennis asked him.

"Please..." The pleasure inside him and around his cock was so intense Sev felt like he was going to explode, intensified by the lust he felt for his brother... the lust he felt for how Dooku was likely to respond when he found out how naughty Sev was being...

Dennis slapped Sev's ass as hard as he could. "Come for me," he growled.

Sev lost control, climaxing, coating Dennis's stomach and abs, and a few seconds later Dennis gasped and gave a shout, his body twitching as he spent deep inside his brother's ass. "Oh, fuck," Dennis panted. "Sev..."

"Mmmmmmmmm." Sev kissed him, and Dennis wrapped his arms around Sev and maneuvered them to lay down on the couch, holding each other as they kissed again and again, lost in each other's eyes between kisses.

A moment later Sev heard a familiar groan, and Sev looked up to see Dooku attempting to have a discrete orgasm, stroking himself into a handkerchief. Sev grinned.

"How long were you there?" he asked his bondmate.

Dooku's eyes shot open and his face turned red. "Long enough."

Dennis cackled. "You're welcome," he said.

Dennis and Sev got dressed, and then Dennis spent a little while fussing over the cats as Dooku had tea and checked his holomail. When Dennis was ready to go, he hugged Sev goodbye, and then he waved to Dooku on his way out.

Sev sat down at the eating area, leaning on an elbow. "So..."

Dooku put his holotablet down and looked at Sev but said nothing, only sipped his tea.

Sev leaned in to kiss Dooku's neck. "Does Daddy want to show me he can fuck me better?"

Dooku growled and crushed Sev's mouth with his. Before he knew what was happening, Sev found himself picked up off his stool and carried to the bed, then thrown onto the bed, as Dooku started undressing with an intensity that would have been frightening if it didn't stir Sev's cock once more. Sev took his clothes off, and the heat in Dooku's dark eyes made him break into gooseflesh, like Dooku was touching him with his gaze. The competition appealed to the dominant part of Dooku - the part that had been competing even in his days as a Jedi, determined to be the best the Order had seen. He loved that Sev loved being conquered by him, even when he was riding on his own brother - an utterly delicious sight - he'd been thinking about how his Master would punish him for it... would fuck him even harder.

Dooku climbed on the bed and seized Severin in his arms, kissing him as hard as he could kiss. Sev's nails immediately dug into Dooku's back, raked down it, eyes challenging him. Dooku's response was to grab Sev by his collar and push into him - Sev was already open and slick. Sev's prostate was sensitive enough from the previous fuck that he shook as Dooku began to thrust; it was almost too good. Sev sank his teeth into Dooku's shoulder, nails raking down his back again. "Daddy," Sev whimpered.

"Yes, you naughty boy." Dooku nipped the point of Sev's ear, making him cry out.

"Fuck..." Sev buried his face in Dooku's shoulder.

Dooku grabbed Sev's curls. "I love taking what belongs to me." He nibbled Sev's neck.

"I love it when Daddy shows me who can fuck me the best," Sev husked.

Dooku kissed him, and pinned Sev down with the weight of him, pounding into him with abandon, as Sev lifted his legs onto Dooku's shoulders, hips flexing, rolling in time with Dooku's thrusts, fucking his cock as Dooku fucked his ass. Sev's cock rubbed against Dooku's abs, teased by the dusting of man fur there, and Dooku groaned as he felt Sev leaking onto his skin. "Messy boy," he rasped before sucking on Sev's neck.

"Oh, Daddy..." Sev grabbed Dooku's ass, clawed it, clawed up to the lower back and back down. "Fuck me, Daddy..."

"Insatiable brat." Dooku nipped the sweet spot where Sev's neck and shoulder met, before licking it, licking his way down to the nipple. Sev cried out, clutching at Dooku's head, and cried out again after a few licks, when Dooku turned his attentions to the other, mischief in his eyes.

Their pleasure built and edged until the bed was creaking beneath them, rocking against the wall, their cries competing with the slap of their flesh, both of them shaking with feverish lust. Between passionate kisses, their eyes met, and it was that eye contact that set them both off, Sev's orgasm intensifying when Dooku growled. They screamed together into a deep kiss, Dooku's hands grasping Sev's, their hands squeezing with the lightning bolt of release.

"I love you," Sev whispered.

"I love you, my own." Dooku kissed him more gently.

They lay on their sides, holding each other. Dooku stroked Sev's curls and kissed the top of his head. "Whatever happens," Dooku said, "I will keep you safe."

Sev looked into Dooku's eyes, and then he kissed the tip of his nose. "You keep me safe. I'll keep you wild."

_

After dinner, Reine took a shower, and when she came back, she sensed Malak was outside. She put on a robe and found him sitting out, looking up at the twilight sky, smoking a bowl by himself.

Reine sat on the porch swing next to him, and took his hand.

Malak finally asked, "What did Sev say?"

Reine turned to look at him. "I'm pregnant."

Malak's jaw dropped.

It took a few minutes before Malak could speak. "You're pregnant?"

Reine nodded.

Malak hugged her, and they rocked together.

Then Reine sighed. "I just... hope we're doing the right thing and not being selfish by bringing a child into these times."

Malak nodded. "Me too."

Reine's arms tightened around him. "Sev offered to help me raise the baby if something happens to you, but just the same... nothing better happen to you. I know you've made a big deal the last while about not wanting to lose me... but I feel the same way about you. I can't lose you, either."

"I have no intention of going anywhere."

Reine pulled back, and gave Malak a stern look. "You've been so upset since this thing with Kylo that I've worried that..."

"Oh no, you've been worried I might... hurt myself?"

Reine nodded, and broke down in tears.

Malak cried too, and pulled Reine back into his arms. They cried together for awhile, and at last Malak said, "I miss Kylo. I still do, even after what he did to me... to all of us. Especially to my brothers. But not only is he not worth doing that over..." Malak took Reine's face in his hands, then. "I'd be hurting you. And in the end, you are more important to me. You are the most important thing to me." A hand slid down to Reine's belly. "Well, this now, too."

Reine smiled. Her hand covered her husband's, and then she brought it to her lips and kissed it.

Malak then breathed a sigh of relief. "I'm glad it's just pregnancy and not some plague."

"No, we're just going to have a plague of dirty diapers and then, eventually, little messes and tantrums." Reine chuckled.

Malak hugged Reine again. "I'm determined to fix this Galaxy so we don't have to question our decision of this being the right time for a baby. And you know how I am when I'm determined." To illustrate his point, he got up and picked Reine up off the porch swing, carrying her over one shoulder as she giggled, playfully swatting him in mock protest.

"You beast," Reine teased.

"Honey... I'll show you what a beast is."

"Oh, will you." Reine grabbed Malak's ass. "I might have some beast in me, too."

"...you're sure going to."

"Oh, you."

Just before Malak climbed on the bed with her, Reine made sure the holocamera was on - she wanted to have something to inspire Neryt for her big night.

Chapter Text

On the morning of Ben's birthday, it rained. It was a sign that Carannia was in its last weeks of fall and winter was on its way.

Dooku went with Leia and Malak to the capitol building for the second half of the CIS summit, and while they were gone, Sev had Han come over for Force lessons. After meditation, some work on Force skills, and lightsaber practice, Sev and Han smoked a bowl together in Sev and Dooku's suite, and then Han watched as Sev pulled out his medical kit.

"What are you doing?" Han asked.

"Getting ready to draw your blood for the DNA test."

"Now?"

Sev gave Han a look. "You did say 'fine' two days ago. Now's as good a time as any."

Han groaned as Sev probed for a vein on his arm, and then he winced once the needle went in. "So how long will this take?" Han asked.

"Well, I'm already done with the blood draw." Sev gestured to the vial. "However, once I drop this off at the lab in the city, it's going to take awhile for them to analyze your results versus the data Jocasta provided them of the DNA files from the old Jedi Order. They're not just testing for paternity or maternity, but also grandparents and avuncular -"

"What?"

"An aunt or uncle. Because that Force sensitivity isn't necessarily your parents' - sometimes it skips a generation, or an aunt or uncle has it but not your mother or father."

"So when you say 'awhile'..."

"They said a week, possibly up to two weeks. Really, it depends on how quickly anything is a match in the Jedi database... if it is."

"OK." Han narrowed his eyes. "You seem pretty confident they're gonna find something."

"I'd be willing to bet on it. We have too many orphans around here for it to be a coincidence."

Han bitchfaced. "You think it's Ben?"

"...He's his own grandpa?"

Han facepalmed. "No. Not Ben Ben..." Han made a Wookiee noise, realizing how idiotic that sounded.

"Ben Ben?" Sev cracked up laughing.

Han bitchfaced again. "We called Obi-Wan Old Ben, decades ago. He's obviously not old anymore... or... whatever the fuck they did when they resurrected him... but... he's who Ben is named for. We were all very fond of him, especially Leia." Han smirked. "Leia told me all about how she used to watch old Clone Wars footage and had a crush on Obi-Wan and he was her imaginary friend as a child. It would be some shit if I turned out to be his son."

"I think, though, Obi would already know and would have said something about it," Sev said. "Obi knows things, and he errs on the side of conscientiousness and responsibility so he wouldn't shove it under the rug if this was something he was aware of or suspected."

"Yeah... you're probably right." Han took another puff from the bowl. "And I don't look anything like him."

"What did your mom look like?"

"Ah, fuck." Han ran a hand through his hair and closed his eyes, remembering. "Blue eyes. Blonde hair."

"So more than likely Obi definitely isn't your dad. But the DNA test will confirm for sure."

Han nodded. "So a week, huh?"

"Yup." Sev patted Han's shoulder. "You can hang in there."

And then, Drogo trotted over to Sev and Han and meowed urgently. "Whasha matter, baby?" Sev cooed.

Drogo meowed again, louder, wagging his tail. Then Pookie also came over, meowing.

"What, you need food? Did you gobble yours up already?" Sev got up from the couch, and once he did, his pointy ears twitched - tiny voices squeaked "mew".

"Oh my Force." Sev followed the direction of the mewing, to one of the boxes he'd set up around the suite for Pumpkin to give birth - this box was just outside the 'fresher. Sev got down on his knees. "Aaaaaa! Kittens!"

Han came over and looked. Pumpkin had a litter of four kittens - two grey tabbies, two orange tabbies. "Well... shit, those are the cutest things."

"We can't touch them just yet..." Sev and Han watched as the kittens snuggled into Pumpkin to nurse on her, and Pumpkin began to purr loudly. "Precious babieeeeeeeees." Sev took out his holocamera.

Then Sev took out his holophone and called Dennis. "Pumpkin just had the babies."

"Yay!" Dennis smiled.

Sev cocked his head to one side. "You and Ben are still taking one, right?"

Dennis nodded. "And especially with them being born on Ben's birthday."

"So they'll be ready to go in about eight weeks, once they're weaned. Put Ben on so he can see this." Once Ben showed up on the holo, Sev pointed the holophone at Pumpkin and the kittens.

"OHMYFORCEKITTENSTHEY'RESOCUTEHOLYSHITTHEY'RESOTINYANDFUZZYANDFLUFFYITHINKI'MGONNADIE." Ben took a deep breath and then he cleared his throat, looked off to the side, and his voice dropped a few octaves. "Yes, I think I would like a cat."

Sev cackled. "So serious. Very Je'daii."

"The Je'daii-est. This is a word now."

_

Because of the weather, Neryt and Reine decided to hold off on swoop lessons, but while Malak was away at the capitol building, Reine invited Neryt over for tea.

When Reine answered the door, she was wearing a sheer, silky white robe that left nothing to the imagination, her dark nipples taut underneath. Neryt's breath caught.

"I have the tea already made," Reine said, gesturing to the teapot on the coffee table.

"You didn't just invite me over here for tea, did you?"

Reine smiled.

Neryt bit her lip and made an appreciative whine. "I did tell Ben I was going to let him be my first, as his birthday present."

"I know. And he will." Reine clicked on the holoscreen against the living room wall. "But I wanted to get you... properly inspired for your first time."

Neryt watched as a holovideo began playing - Reine and Malak naked on the bed, kissing, hands roaming. They were a nice-looking couple... and nice-looking on their own.

After a few minutes of Reine and Malak just kissing, Malak drew a nipple into his mouth, making Reine gasp and shudder. A hand that had been playing over her curves stole between her legs, slowly rubbing her cleft. Reine moaned on-screen, and also moaned off-screen - Neryt watched as Reine, sitting next to her, had undone the robe she was wearing and was now rubbing and pinching a nipple.

"You're so wet," Malak husked, before kissing Reine again, and then kissing her neck, down to the other nipple. Reine and Neryt both moaned at the sight of Malak's tongue slowly, teasingly lapping the nipple and around the aureole, before suckling the nipple, pulling it with his lips, licking it faster. Malak kissed down Reine's toned stomach, to lick and kiss at her inner thigh, making Reine clutch at him and moan louder. Neryt watched with interest as Malak parted Reine's legs - she took a good look at Reine's pussy, exposed to the camera... and Malak began to kiss it, slowly, lovingly, reverently.

Next to her, Reine's own thighs were parted, and her hand was between her legs, touching herself. Neryt groaned with sexual frustration.

"You can take care of yourself too," Reine told her. "That's why I put this on."

Neryt hesitated, feeling a little shy, and then she got up, undid her jeans, and pulled down her jeans and panties. Reine looked at Neryt's ass, and gave it a playful slap, making them both giggle before Neryt sat back down on the couch just in time to see the holocamera zoom in on Malak's tongue rubbing Reine's swollen clit. Neryt's fingers began rubbing her own clit in the same motion, and she moaned as her clit responded with excitement.

Malak teasingly licked around Reine's clit to suck on one of her thick pussy lips, before dipping his tongue inside her, making Reine howl. After a moment of working his tongue inside her, Malak came back up to lap her clit some more, pushing his fingers in and out of her. Neryt could hear how wet she was... both on-screen and off-screen. Neryt's own pussy was making sloppy sounds too, just from the wetness at her clit.

Reine leaned in to whisper, "After you let Ben and Dennis have that first taste... this is gonna be us, baby."

Neryt cried out, and rubbed her clit harder. "Fuck..."

"Mmmmmm." Reine grabbed Neryt's face with her free hand, and tilted it so they could kiss.

Neryt's hips started to buck, fucking her fingers. Neryt could feel herself dripping into her own ass - so wet her fingers kept slipping and she had to rub hard to keep her fingers on her clit.

Malak was sucking Reine's clit now, and Reine's moans on-screen got louder and louder, her hips rolling, gently fucking his mouth. Reine and Neryt pawed themselves with abandon, as they shared delicious mental images of what it would be like to lick and suck each other's clits, finger each other's wet, juicy cunts. Neryt could smell Reine's arousal and found it intoxicating, and when Reine stuck wet fingers into Neryt's mouth, Neryt almost came just from tasting her.

Neryt almost came again when Reine came on-screen, gasping and panting - Malak removed his fingers just before the orgasm, to show Reine's pussy contracting. Neryt rubbed her clit even harder, fucking it between her fingers, feeling the orgasmic tension build higher and higher.

The holocamera zoomed out to show Reine and Malak kissing, and then Reine kissed her way down Malak's body to take his hard, leaking cock in her mouth. Neryt moaned again, thinking of Ben and Dennis.

Reine kissed Neryt's neck, and kissed along her jaw. "You're gonna love sucking cock. I can just tell."

"Hnnnngggggg..." Neryt bit her lower lip, shaking with the delicious fantasies of Ben and Dennis sucking each other... her own mouth sucking each of them...

Neryt kept watching as Reine looked up at Malak with hunger in her eyes, her head bobbing up and down as she worked his cock in and out of her mouth, between those full lips. Before Malak could come, he stopped her. "Ride me, baby," he rasped. Reine eagerly shoved him onto his back, and the holocamera zoomed in once more to show Malak's cock pushing into Reine's pussy, her pussy lips kissing his cock. The camera zoomed out to show Reine astride her husband, breasts bouncing as they worked their hips together, his cock pushing in and out, her juices running over the shaft.

Neryt moaned. Reine kissed Neryt again and purred, "I bet you can't wait to have Ben's cock inside you... and then, eventually, Dennis..." She licked a lekku, and Neryt cried out. "And I might fuck you with a strap-on."

"Oh, fuck... fuckkkkkk..." Neryt's fingers were frenzied now, fucking her clit as hard and fast as she could, fantasies chasing one after the other: getting fucked by Ben, getting fucked by Dennis, getting fucked by Reine...

"...and we could try you fucking me..."

...fucking Reine like Malak was doing to her... Neryt whimpered, her orgasm getting closer.

"So many things we can do." Reine kissed Neryt again. "Fit a double dildo in our pussies and rub our clits together..."

Neryt kissed Reine back with a growl, and before she knew what she was doing, she took Reine's hand and put it on her pussy, and her own hand began working Reine's clit. Hard. Reine's fingers rubbed Neryt just like she was doing to herself, and they both moaned into the kiss. The kiss turned open-mouthed, tongues rubbing together, and Reine spoke into Neryt's mind: Lick that tongue, just like you want to lick my nipples... and lick my clit...

"Ohfuckohfuckohfuck fuck!" Neryt climaxed, contracting underneath Reine's fingers. Then she felt Reine contract, just in time to watch Reine come again on-screen, followed by Malak giving a few last hard thrusts before crying out, Reine's pussy gushing with Malak's cum.

Reine tasted Neryt from her fingers, and Neryt tasted Reine again, before they wrapped their arms around each other and kissed once more, Reine's bare breasts pressing against Neryt's shirt. They leaned back on the couch and giggled.

"That was fun," Neryt said.

"Not as much fun as you're gonna have tonight with those boys." Reine grinned. "Just think about what you saw on the video... and the two of them doing that to you... and you'll be nice and wet and ready to get fucked good."

"I can't wait." Neryt smiled. "I want them both so bad." Then her voice got husky as she said, "I want you, too."

"You will definitely have me." Reine gave Neryt another teasing open-mouthed kiss, tongues playing. "We're going to have a lot of fun together."

_

Malak had been trying to not think about the fact that it was his former best friend Kylo's birthday, but when the CIS summit was over, the bad feelings hit him. He was angry at himself for missing Kylo's friendship, for caring whether or not Kylo was having a sad little birthday with just himself, his wife, and grandfather... and he felt like he was somehow an impostor for the vote of confidence with him becoming the first head of state once CIS had achieved its ultimate objective of overthrowing the New Republic. I couldn't even look after my best friend and keep his ass out of trouble, never mind the rest of the Galaxy.

For the sake of not ruining Ben's birthday, Malak tried to keep it together. He took a shower between the CIS summit and the time when he was scheduled to arrive at the palace; he meditated in the shower, and that helped somewhat. He was further distracted by Reine in a little black dress. She usually kept her wild kinky curls in an updo, but now they were hanging loose, to her collarbone. Malak ran his fingers through them appreciatively, and kissed her.

Reine ogled him as he took off his towel and began putting on clothes, opting to wear the black dress kilt again. When Malak had his kilt on but was otherwise shirtless, Reine ran a hand over his bare chest, smiling. Malak stroked Reine's face and kissed her again.

"I think as a little gift to Ben, I'm going to volunteer to watch Owen and Lysa tonight," Reine said.

Malak nodded. "That's generous."

They arrived at the palace just in time for dinner to be served - Ben had requested nerf steak, and the steak was perfect - and then Sev grinned as the cake was brought out. Dooku facepalmed once the cover was taken off the cake - instead of HAPPY BIRTHDAY, the cake read CONGRATS ON THE SEX.

"Really?" Dooku bitchfaced at Sev.

"Well, it's appropriate, right?" Sev grinned.

Before the cake was served, Ben made a little toast over champagne. "Even as recently as a few months ago, I had a deathwish. My only purpose for going on was to stop Kylo Ren, Snoke, and the First Order. But I have something to live for now besides keeping them out of power. I have a wonderful husband-to-be, who has two beautiful children I love like they were my own." He squeezed Dennis's hand, and Dennis kissed Ben's hand, smiling. "And we've found a third." Ben took Neryt's hand, and she gave them a dazzling smile. "And I have a family - not just being reunited with my parents, but all of us have come together to make a tribe of hearts, something greater than ourselves. We have bonds forged in fire, that led us back to each other again - even when our ancient enemies have worked very hard to keep us apart. Today I am truly celebrating my life, for the first time in... well, ever. I'm glad to be alive. You all helped me to see what it's like to actually live instead of just exist. Thank you."

"OK, who's cutting onions in here?" Sev sniffed.

When everyone was working on cake, Reine said to Ben, "So you, Dennis, and Neryt can have a night to yourselves, I'm willing to watch Owen and Lysa."

"Really? Thank you." Ben smiled.

"Well, it's not completely unselfish on my part." Reine patted her belly. "I need to get some parenting practice in."

Dennis's eyes widened. "Holy shit, you're...?"

Reine nodded. She and Malak clasped hands.

"Oh, this is awesome." Dennis raised his glass. "Owen and Lysa will have cousins to play with."

Irina spoke up. "While you're attending Ben's... ceremony... I can watch the children until it's time for you to take them home."

"OK." Reine nodded.

After cake, there was an intermission before Ben's collaring ceremony, which would take place in Dooku's dungeon - just Ben, Dennis, Neryt, Dooku, Sev, Reine, Malak, Jocasta and Sifo-Dyas would be there. In the hallway Finn hugged his sister and congratulated her, and then Poe stopped looking at the floor and looked up at Malak, awkwardly clearing his throat. Malak raised an eyebrow.

"Um," Poe said, "I'm sorry about my outburst a few days ago."

Malak nodded. "It's understandable. Past-life memories can be overwhelming to deal with."

Poe sighed. "I misjudged you." He put out his hand.

Malak took Poe's hand and shook it, and then Poe put an arm around him and patted his shoulder. "You're the leader the Galaxy needs," Poe told him. "Whatever I can do to help you get there... just ask."

Finn beamed. "I'm glad to see you guys getting along." He hugged Malak too. "Reine says Sev is going to be one of the godparents... and she asked me to be the other one."

Malak nodded. "Good, good." Then he frowned. "Will you, um, excuse me?"

Malak let himself in the nearest refresher station and started crying, thinking of when Kylo had asked him to be the godfather of the child Valyeris was carrying. So much for that, now. He tried to be strong and fight the tears, but he felt the pain like he'd been stabbed with a lightsaber and the wound was fresh. Kylo had betrayed his trust several different ways, and Malak felt like an ass for still caring about him, wherever he was in the Galaxy, wishing things had been different, wishing they were fighting together instead of against each other. You were my brother. I would have died for you. And now... it looked very well like one of them might wind up killing the other.

Just like before.

Malak took a few deep breaths, attempting to pull himself together. He splashed cold water on his face, his hands shaking. When he'd stopped crying - still fragile, but not a gross sobbing mess - he cautiously stepped out of the 'fresher, hoping he was alone in that part of the hallway. Of course, Han Solo was walking to the refresher station.

When Han saw Malak, he stopped in his tracks, and Malak looked away.

"Hey," Han said. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing." Malak tried to shuffle past, and Han stopped him.

"It's because it's Kylo's birthday too, isn't it?"

Malak broke down crying again.

Han put his arms around him, and they huddled against a wall together, with Han letting Malak cry on him. After a few minutes Leia walked towards them. "I heard the crying. Is everything all right?"

Han gestured to Malak.

Reine was a few steps behind Leia. Leia approached Malak - Malak had a foot and a half on her and she had to stand on tiptoe to stroke his face, before she put an arm around him too. "I know you miss him, honey." Leia pinched his cheek. "I know you tried to be a good friend to my boy. This isn't your fault."

Leia looked at Reine, and Reine nodded, and then Leia put her other hand on Han, and said to him, "Han... why don't we wait around in the living room till after Ben's ceremony is done... and then take Malak home with us?"

Malak stopped crying and looked at them, eyes wide.

"You mean... overnight?" Han looked back at Leia.

Leia nodded.

"Is that all right with you?" Han looked at Reine. Reine nodded.

"You sure you don't mind?" Malak sniffled. "You're watching Owen and Lysa -"

Reine nodded some more. "I'd do that tonight whether you were there or not. Like I said, I need the practice for when this guy's due." She rubbed her belly.

"OK."

"I'll meet you down at the dungeon," Reine said, and waved to Han and Leia as she strolled off.

Han gave Leia a boost, and Leia leaned in to give Malak a kiss. Malak's mouth yielded, and he groaned as their tongues met, playing together. Leia ran her hands through Malak's hair... and then she tugged playfully at the sensitive points of his ears, making him groan again. She kissed along the line of his jaw, up the shell of his ear, to draw a point into her mouth.

"I've been thinking about doing this to you for awhile now," she husked. "It's time we start taking care of our own needs instead of trying to do the right thing all the time."

"Oh, fuck." Malak crushed Leia's mouth to his, kissing her back with all the hunger he'd been restraining for the sake of not upsetting his former best friend.

Then Han put Leia down on the floor, and after a pause, his eyes met Malak's, and then their mouths met, also. Leia moaned as she watched the two men kiss, sensual and passionate... and then Malak teased Leia by giving Han an open-mouth kiss, their tongues flicking together as Malak reached around to grope Han's ass.

When Malak kissed Han's neck, Han groaned, "Fuck me," and Malak kissed back up to his mouth again, giving him a hard, deep kiss before he rasped, "Later." Malak grinned mischievously as he strolled off.

_

Malak was the last to arrive at the dungeon, and once he walked in, Ben said, "Now that we're all here..."

Malak stood next to Reine and took her hand, and Ben gestured to Dennis.

Dennis looked at Neryt. "Those of us in this room weren't just connected in some fashion by the Mandalorian Wars and the subsequent fallout... we have a very ancient history with each other going back 25,000 years to the time of the Je'daii - the predecessors of the Jedi. But it goes even deeper than that. We are each of us, in this space, an avatar of a Force deity -"

"Advanced Force being," Sev snapped, rolling his eyes.

"-advanced Force being. The Jedi taught that the Force was one, but the Je'daii taught that this was more like a wheel... and each of us could be thought of as spokes on a wheel, an arm, getting a different job done. Jocasta and Sifo's Je'daii incarnations used to draw down Ashla and Bogan, the Light and Dark halves of the Force, respectively, for ritual. Ashla and Bogan had fourteen children, the Seven Light and the Seven Shadow. We are the Seven Light. Before we left Arcturus, we did a ritual to call the seventh to us." Dennis smiled at Neryt. "Then we found you."

Neryt's eyes widened. "How long ago was this?"

"A few days before we left for Serenno. Why?"

Neryt put her hands on her hips. "I remember having this very, very strange dream about a tower... and having to keep some guy from getting at the tower..."

Ben nodded. "Yes."

Neryt then folded her arms. "So I'm some... Force... being?"

"Well, your Higher Self is." Dennis explained, "When the Force is out of balance, we incarnate into physical bodies so our actions can directly impact the Galaxy and get things done... starting a new era, for better or worse. The last time we all convened like this was the Mandalorian Wars. The Force tried to get the band back together before the Clone Wars, but we have reason to believe a very ancient enemy of ours, who is now inhabiting the body of Supreme Leader Snoke, got in the way."

"Huh."

"So what we're about to do," Dennis went on, "isn't just me collaring Ben as my submissive. From a cosmic perspective, Exile is collaring the Lord of the Dead - Knowledge is subduing Death, keeping it on the right side of balance in the Force. Ben isn't just offering himself to me, he's offering his entire cosmic purpose to the Dark Tower - that which connects all worlds and universes, and holds up the very fabric of reality."

Neryt let that sink in.

"We'll be doing this much like we did the ritual to call the seventh," Ben said, "except without the orgy at the end, because I want Neryt's first time to be done right, in a much more tender and loving way."

"We'll be reciting the Je'daii Code which is the invocation to our Higher Selves," Dennis said, "and then I'll be collaring Ben, with Ashla, Bogan, and our other siblings in the Seven as witness."

Sev nodded. "All right, let's do this."

Sifo-Dyas and Jocasta stood in the center of the dungeon, and the other seven took hands and formed an arc around them, with Dennis on the far left and Neryt on the far right. Jocasta took a deep breath, closed her eyes, and projected a ball of white light from her index fingers, which rose in the air and then expanded, becoming a ring of white light pushing out and bathing the dungeon in light. Sifo did the same, but with a ball of black shadow.

Dennis spoke the line of the Exile, "There is no ignorance, there is knowledge."

Reine spoke the line of the Lady of Shadows, "There is no fear, there is power."

Ben spoke the line of the Lord of the Dead, "I am the heart of the Force."

Severin spoke the line of the Prophet of Fire, "I am the revealing fire of light."

Dooku spoke the line of the Lord of Silence, "I am the mystery of darkness."

Malak spoke the line of the Lord of Time, "In balance with chaos and harmony."

Neryt spoke the line of the Lovely One, "Immortal in the Force."

When the last words were spoken, the room was awash in violet light and there was a change in the air, like each of the seven has gotten significantly bigger and their presence in the Force was stronger and louder, even though none of them had changed size. When Dennis and Ben stepped forward and made their way to where Jocasta and Sifo had been standing, the rest of the group noticed their eyes had changed color - not the usual gold of Sith eyes, but a deep blue-violet color.

Dennis had an eternity collar made for Ben, one that once put on, would not be able to be removed again unless it was cut off. It was a simple silver design, with a figure eight instead of the usual O-ring of a submissive collar. Ben knelt, and Dennis removed the collar Ben had been wearing previously.

"I pledge myself to you," Ben said, "of my own free will. I pledge my work as Death to the Dark Tower, guided by your Knowledge. I give myself to your guidance and direction, in perfect love and perfect trust."

"I pledge to take care of you," Dennis said, "of my own free will. I will not lead you astray, but will uphold the trust you have put in me, from this day, until my last day."

Ben kissed the eternity collar, and then Dennis put it around Ben's neck, closing it in the center. Then Dennis clipped a leash through the figure eight, and with a gentle tug, Ben rose to his feet. Dennis took Ben into his arms and kissed him, and the rest of the group applauded. Dennis gestured for Neryt to come over, and Neryt kissed Ben too, before kissing Dennis. When Neryt, Ben, and Dennis rubbed their tongues together, Dooku and Sev looked at each other and Dooku said, "That would be our cue to depart for the evening."

Everyone's eyes returned to their normal color, and the dungeon went back to its usual play of light and shadow. There was still a lingering feeling of power, and it made Ben, Dennis, and Neryt downright giddy, giggling on their way to Ben and Dennis's villa.

Reine walked Malak to the living room, where Han and Leia were waiting with Mace and Irina, who had the kids. "You sure you're OK with this?" Malak asked.

"Yes. Stop asking." Reine gave him a playful swat. She collected a sleepy Owen and Lysa, and Malak, Han, and Leia accompanied her back to the villas. Reine and Malak kissed goodnight, and then Leia and Han each took one of Malak's hands, and Malak walked with them to their place, his heart hammering with every step.

Once Owen and Lysa were put to bed in the spare room, Reine put on the holoscreen in her and Malak's bedroom. Neryt was sending her a live feed, and this was going to be good...

_

The flash of violet light passed, with that familiar pop, and then it was back to the sea of stars.

"Well," Luke Skywalker said to Rey, "I think we're back in our own universe now."

Rey was half-asleep, and she squinted at him and nodded groggily. "Where are we going?"

"Coruscant, to get a pulse on things, and it's easy enough to lay low while we're there, on a city-world of a trillion people. Hell, they probably built some new levels since the last time I was there." Luke cringed. "The next quantum rift to take us back to our friends on Tython is in four weeks, which should give us enough time to figure out where my sister is and see if she's found the others."

"All right." Rey frowned. "I hope the First Order hasn't taken Coruscant yet."

"I don't sense that, no." Luke had just the slightest touch of his Force bond with his nephew and former student, Kylo Ren. "They sure want to. They're gonna have one hell of a fight to try and take it." A brief Force vision of Kylo on the steps of the Jedi Temple ruins, swinging his lightsaber at... Ben. In the universe they'd just come from, there was a Kylo who had a twin brother, Ben. He had only been aware of Kylo being an only child, here, but something had started to feel wrong about that. Now he knew why - Kylo did have a brother. Luke poked the vision again. Han Solo, back from the dead. And there's... Yoda? What's all this with the Separatists?

"I'm putting the ship on autopilot and hitting my bunk," Luke said. "I think I'm hallucinating a little bit."

When Luke Skywalker closed his eyes, he saw a pointy-eared young man, with nape-length curly dark hair and closely trimmed facial hair, wearing a dark blue military uniform, sitting on a porch swing. You come see me, Luke Skywalker. You and your friend.

A whirling cloud of ash that took the form of a vulture, flying at the young man, who came at it with a glowing purple sword, and then threw a ball of fire. The vulture became a man - Kylo Ren - who just laughed at him.

Kylo began to sing. All seven and we watched them fall... He began to Force choke the young man.

We have only just begun to stand. The young man burned Kylo's choking hand, and then his green eyes then looked beyond Kylo, back to Luke. You come real soon now.

The vision stopped, and Luke sat up with a gasp. But as unnerved as he felt about the inevitable war with Kylo Ren, there was also a feeling of relief - he got the sense his sister had found her allies. Their allies. The Heir of Light was coming home to take his place in the Seven Shadow.

Chapter Text

When Neryt, Ben, and Dennis stepped through the door of the villa Ben and Dennis shared, Neryt was shaking - a combination of excitement, nervousness, and desire. Dennis turned to her and asked politely, "Do you want anything before we get started? Tea? Juice? Soda?"

"Just you."

Dennis cupped Neryt's chin in his hand, leaned in, and kissed her. Neryt wrapped her arms around him and moaned into the kiss, the sweet, slow fire of Dennis's tongue swirling on hers, as his hand stroked down her spine, to cup and rub the crack of her ass.

Then it was Ben's turn. He looked deep into her eyes, with a little smile, stroking her face before his lips lightly brushed hers... and then he playfully took her lower lip between his, sucking on it, before his mouth moved to cover hers, tongue searching, greeting, playing.

Ben and Dennis each took Neryt's hand and walked her to their bedroom. Ben used the Force to light candles around the room, and Dennis and Neryt began undressing. Neryt had seen Dennis naked before, but it was one thing to see him several feet away in the orchard, and another thing to see his body up close. She liked his chest hair... and she especially liked his nipples, already swollen with arousal. Before she knew what she was doing, her fingers were running through his chest hair, and she lowered her head to lick a nipple, making Dennis moan and grab her sensitive lekku.

Ben had somehow gotten naked in record time and threw himself on the bed, propped up on one elbow. Dennis was next to be naked, fully, proudly erect. Ben and Dennis ogled Neryt in a lacy white bra and matching panties, looking innocent and seductive all at once. When she took off her bra, they both gasped at the sight of her breasts - not too big and not small, enough to cup in the hand, with large nipples a darker shade of red than her skin. A white marking like a swirled flourish, matching the markings on her cheeks below her eyes, was just above the cleft of her breasts, and there was one just like it above her mound, a couple of inches from her hairless cleft. It was the first time anyone had ever seen Neryt completely nude, and she felt a mixture of shyness and... power. Ben and Dennis were looking at her like she was a goddess.

"You're beautiful," Ben husked.

Neryt joined them on the bed. Ben kissed her again, while Dennis began to lick and stroke one of her lekku, his tongue trailing along the brown stripes like they were an indicator for where his tongue should go... and it felt incredible. Neryt moaned and shivered, feeling ready to orgasm just from that. When Dennis's mouth left her lekku and kissed along her neck and shoulder, Neryt cried out into Ben's mouth - she was exquisitely sensitive there as well.

Then it was Dennis's turn to kiss her, as Ben explored the other lekku, the other side of her neck, her other shoulder. The hand not on her lekku roamed over her body in slow, lazy circles, caressing her breast, her flat stomach, her hip and thigh... teasingly brushing her mound. Neryt's legs parted instinctively, and Ben's breath caught at the sight of her pussy, like a beautiful dark red flower, her swollen clit like a ripe berry waiting to be sucked. She was already so wet, cream slicking her folds, and Neryt collected some on her fingers, pushing them into Ben's mouth. She pulled her mouth away from Dennis to watch Ben's reaction, and the look of sensual bliss on his face as he sucked her fingers, tasting her juices, made her cunt twinge with need. Her cunt twinged again when Ben gave Dennis an open-mouth kiss, their tongues teasingly licking together, so Dennis could taste Neryt on Ben's tongue.

"Oh, fuck," Dennis moaned.

They looked at her like they were two wolves and she was a delicious piece of meat to be devoured. Neryt shuddered, wanting them so badly it made her nipples and cunt ache. The three of them rubbed their tongues together, and then Dennis and Ben leaned their heads in and each drew a nipple into her mouth. Neryt clutched their heads and whimpered, loving the feel of their lips locked on her nipples, suckling, pulling. When the suckling became licking, the rubbing of their tongues made Neryt even crazier with lust and need. Nothing had ever felt so good, so exquisite, and they hadn't even started to pleasure her body. It continued on and on, sucking and licking, pulling her nipples with their lips, gentle grazing of the teeth, a little tug, soothing with their tongues, exciting with feverish tongue-lashing, making her wonder what those quick tongues would feel like elsewhere.

As if he was reading her mind, Dennis came up from her breast, and after another kiss, his tongue trailed down her neck... oh so good... and then traced over the white swirl above her breasts. Neryt gave a wild cry - Dennis's tongue was almost electric, on another place she hadn't expected to be so sensitive. There was more adoration of her nipple, and then Dennis went back to her lekku, licking it up and down, fingers stroking over it, until at last his hand gripped it, working it like it was a cock. Ben kissed up her neck, and then he followed suit with the other lekku. Having both of her lekku stimulated at once with their hands and mouths made Neryt thrash, whimpering helplessly, hips bucking, wanting sex more than she'd ever wanted anything in her life. Her fingers at last found her clit, and when Dennis sucked her lekku into his mouth, taking it as deep as he could go with his grey eyes on her the whole time, giving her a hungry, naughty look, Neryt had her first climax of the evening, a combination of clit pleasure and lekku pleasure.

"Oh, did you come?" Ben whispered. He parted Neryt's thighs wider, and saw her cream dripping onto the sheets, making a wet spot. "You naughty girl."

"Oh, fuck..." Neryt got excited all over again.

Ben's response was to suck Neryt's lekku like Dennis was doing, and Neryt howled, rubbing herself even harder as both of her lekku were sucked at once. When they went back and forth between sucking her lekku and sucking her nipples, a few rounds of that brought on Neryt's second orgasm, squirting a little as her pussy clenched underneath her furious fingers.

"That's it, baby." Dennis nibbled Neryt's shoulder. "Get that pussy nice and wet for us to taste."

"Fuck..." Neryt whimpered as Dennis crushed her mouth to his, kissed her hard, stroked her montrals, her face, before his hand slid down to cup her breast, his thumb teasing her sensitive, slick nipple. Dennis's other hand snatched Neryt's away from her cunt, and she whimpered again as his fingers began to work her clit, knowing intuitively how she liked it rubbed.

"So wet." Dennis sucked Neryt's lower lip, before his tongue playfully licked hers. "Such a messy girl."

Ben sucked Neryt's nipple again, and gave it a few last slow licks before he kissed his way down her stomach, pausing to nibble on her navel. Neryt moaned, reaching to stroke his hair.

With a wicked grin on his face, Dennis began to kiss his way down. As Ben kissed and licked Neryt's soaked inner thigh, Dennis licked Neryt's navel, and then his tongue trailed along the white swirl above her cleft, one direction and then the other, making Neryt shiver, whining urgently. "Please..." she begged.

"Please what, baby?" Dennis kissed the center of the swirl, so teasingly close to where she needed to be kissed that it was all Neryt could do to not scream.

"Please... eat my pussy..."

Ben and Dennis looked at each other. Dennis gestured to Ben, and Ben bent his head in and took his first lick. He groaned appreciatively as her juices coated his tongue, and she moaned as his tongue teased around her clit. Then Ben's tongue brushed over her clit, feather-light, and Neryt gasped, almost coming again just from that delicate touch. Ben's tongue licked over her folds... he sucked her pussy lips into his mouth, sipping her cream, before his tongue came back to her clit, licking it slowly... so slowly. Dennis kissed Neryt's thigh, up to her hip, and back down, as Ben's tongue continued its slow exploration. "You taste so good, love," Ben said between licks. "I could do this to you every day..."

"Oh, yesss..." Neryt nodded, shuddering as Ben's slow licks stoked her fire, built her need hotter. "It feels good..."

"It's gonna feel even better." Ben sucked Neryt's clit into his mouth, and Neryt screamed and sobbed, loving it.

Ben sucked and kissed Neryt's clit, and Dennis's mouth moved from Neryt's thigh to lick the space where her thigh and pussy met, making Neryt scream again. Then Dennis was kissing Neryt's pussy lips too, and Neryt's hips bucked, gently fucking their mouths as her fingers grabbed at their hair. "Fuck," she squealed. "Fuck, that's so fucking good..."

Ben gave her clit some more slow licking, and as Ben licked at her, Dennis dipped his tongue inside her. She was tight, but she was hot and wet, and Dennis's tongue filled her channel without pain. The tip of his tongue found her G-spot, and began to slowly lick it in time with Ben's tongue on her clit. Neryt trembled from head to toe, panting, gasping, dangerously close to another orgasm. She felt like she was going to explode if she didn't come, but it was so exquisite she didn't want them to stop...

Ben pulled back a little and Neryt howled with frustration, and again when Dennis's tongue pulled out of her. She watched as Ben and Dennis looked at each other and then shared a sensual open-mouthed kiss, tongue fucking tongue, the two of them groaning as they shared her juices between them. It was the most erotic thing Neryt had seen in her life, and she pinched her aching nipples, needing something, anything. She gave a sob of relief when Ben and Dennis got back to work, their tongues licking harder and faster. And then harder and faster still - Dennis's tongue was fucking her so hard, and Ben worked his tongue like it was a vibrator, humming into her as he brought her to that edge. When his eyes locked with hers, Neryt whimpered, so turned on by the heat she saw in those dark eyes.

Come for me, Ben spoke into her mind.

Neryt climaxed, and Dennis moaned as her juices flooded his mouth, her cunt clenching around his tongue. Ben licked as best as he could as her pussy lips contracted, giving a few last slow, teasing licks before he and Dennis kissed again, this time kissing deep and hungry, their hands roaming over each other as they moaned, savoring her taste.

"Oh, fuck, I need more," Dennis rasped. He dove in, tongue on Neryt's clit, fast and furious out the gate. Neryt screamed, clutching Dennis's head. "Yes, yes," Neryt moaned.

"You taste so fucking good, baby." Dennis sucked Neryt's clit into his mouth, giving her a sensual look through narrowed eyes. He sucked like he was giving a blowjob, working his head back and forth, and Neryt howled with pleasure.

Ben leaned in, and his tongue found its way inside of her. With Dennis sucking her clit and Ben lapping her G-spot, Neryt was back on that edge of climax again, and every time she felt her body ready to give in and come, Dennis and Ben changed the pace, keeping her just shy of orgasm so the tension built more and more, wild animal excitement surging through her, threatening to shatter her with its intensity. Dennis began licking her clit, light but fast, while Ben slowed down his licks inside of her. After a few minutes of a lighter touch, Dennis took Neryt's clit between his index and middle fingers, squeezing just a little, and increased the pressure and speed of his tongue. Ben let loose, working his tongue like a hurricane inside her. It was too much. Neryt shrieked at the top of her lungs, toes and fingers curling as the throbbing pleasure of her orgasm racked her, so exquisite it almost hurt. When Ben pulled his tongue out of her, Neryt squirted, and Ben and Dennis lapped at it like a fountain, getting their cheeks, chins, and necks drenched by her juices... which they then proceeded to lick off each other, groaning. Neryt had managed to squirt onto Dennis's nipples, and watching Ben lick and suck them made her horny all over again.

"You think she's ready?" Ben asked Dennis.

Dennis climbed over to kiss Neryt - she could taste her cunt on him, and the sweet taste of herself made her moan. "Are you ready for something more?" he asked.

She nodded.

Dennis and Neryt kissed, as Dennis played with her clit and she took his hard cock into her hand, stroking it slowly. Ben came up to kiss over her body, adoring each nipple with more licking and sucking, then licking and kissing and nibbling her stomach and hips and thighs. "You are so gorgeous," Ben sighed. "So fucking sexy."

"Yes, you are." Dennis stroked Neryt's face, smiling at her lovingly as he looked deep into her eyes. Neryt sighed - Dennis had such pretty grey eyes, and the look of worship in his eyes made her melt. "You've got beautiful eyes," Dennis told her. "So dark... but warm." He kissed the place where her montrals ended and her forehead began, and slid his lips down the white stripe in the center of her forehead, to where it stopped between her eyes. He kissed the tip of her nose and she giggled, and then he gave her a sweet, sensual kiss that made her feel like he was kissing her soul.

Ben came up to kiss Neryt, and then he and Dennis kissed, and Neryt moaned as she watched them. "You guys are so hot together," she groaned.

"Glad you think so." Dennis smiled before he licked his tongue against Ben's, and then began kissing Ben's neck.

"So," Ben said to Neryt, "do you want me inside you?"

Neryt nodded.

"I'm going to fuck him while he's inside you," Dennis told her.

"Oh, fuck, yes," Neryt moaned.

"You can help me get it ready for him," Dennis said. He positioned himself so he was kneeling over her shoulders, his hard cock in her face. Neryt paused for a moment, looking up at Dennis with love before she took her first lick, swirling her tongue around the head.

"Oh, goddamn." Dennis shivered.

Neryt playfully licked down the shaft, and again, and again, before licking her way up, and she spent the next few minutes just licking the head, until it was oozing precum trailing down the shaft... for her to chase with more licks of her tongue.

"Fuck." Dennis grabbed Neryt's lekku. "You sure you've never done this before?"

"Uh uh." Neryt licked the slit in the head of Dennis's cock, and her tongue trailed down the frenum, lapping it like it was a clit. Dennis groaned, and Neryt smiled. "I just watch a lot of porn. Especially guys doing this to other guys."

"Fuck, no wonder you know what I like."

Neryt's response was to suck the head of Dennis's cock into her mouth, and just the head, kissing it, tongue swirling and swirling, lips sensually caressing around the sensitive rim of the head. Dennis groaned, and then he cried out as Ben came behind him and put his tongue in Dennis's ass, furiously tongue-fucking the prostate, fingers playing in the sensitive place where Dennis's balls and ass met.

"Mmmmmmmmmmmmm." Neryt licked her lips, and then she took as much of Dennis's cock in her mouth as she could, working her head back and forth slowly, sucking hard, working her cheeks and tongue. Dennis's eyes rolled as he bit his lip and shuddered, whining as the pleasure of getting his cock sucked and ass eaten brought him close to the edge of climax.

"You've got such a fucking hot ass." Ben licked Dennis more slowly, while Neryt sped up her sucking. "One of these days I'm going to tongue fuck Neryt's cunt and when her juices are still coating my tongue I'm going to lick your ass, taste both of you at the same time..."

"Oh, fuck!" Dennis's hips bucked, but he controlled himself just in time. Neryt let his cock slip from her mouth and resumed licking it. Feeling bold, she leaned down and licked his balls, tongue-bathing them, revelling in the sounds Dennis made as she did. When she sucked his balls into her mouth, Dennis almost lost it again, grabbing her lekku for dear life.

"I'm pretty worked up too, eating this delicious ass." Ben peppered Dennis's thighs with kisses before he came around, admiring Dennis's slick, dripping cock. "Your cock looks good enough to eat, too."

Before Dennis could respond, Ben took Dennis's cock into his mouth, and Neryt cried out, "Fuck, yeah!", shivering at the deliciousness of that sight. Ben sucked Dennis slowly, Dennis moaning louder and louder until his knees buckled and he ground out, "Stop or I'm gonna come, and I want to come in your ass, baby."

Ben did as he was told, and he kissed up Neryt's body, at last claiming her mouth with his. The combined taste of Dennis's cock and ass with the remnant of her juices was interesting but not in a bad way, and Neryt murmured into the kiss. The murmurs became moaning when Ben's fingers probed between her legs, slipping inside her. Ben fingered and kissed her for a few minutes as Dennis kissed Ben's neck and shoulders, finally kissing down Ben's spine, making Ben groan and shudder.

Ben stroked Neryt's face. "I'm going to start now. You're very wet but you're still tight so I'm gonna go slow... and if I hurt you, if it's too much, you tell me and I'll stop, okay?"

Neryt nodded. She spread her legs, and Ben moaned at the sight of her dripping pussy, ready for him. He teased her for a minute by rubbing the head of his cock against her pussy lips and clit, then putting in just the tip, rubbing her clit with his cock some more, then just the tip, until Neryt screamed, "PLEASE."

Ben laughed softly, and he leaned in to kiss Neryt as he began to push his cock in, nice and slow, until he was in all the way. He gave her a moment to get adjusted to the fullness of him, and so he didn't come right away from the silken vise of her cunt gripping him.

"How's that?" Ben asked. "You still OK?"

Neryt nodded.

He kissed her again, and moved his hips. Neryt gasped. "You OK?" Ben asked.

Neryt nodded again. "Just... so big."

"I'm going easy, baby." Ben kissed her. "I want this to be good for you, sweetheart." He stroked her face.

Neryt stroked Ben's face and kissed him back, and Ben started to thrust, rolling his hips slowly, one hand reaching to play with her clit, the other caressing over her body. Neryt whimpered into the kiss, and whimpered again when she noticed Dennis stroking his now very-well-lubed cock to the sight of them, his eyes fixed on Ben's cock gliding in and out of her pussy, slicking him with her cream, pussy lips kissing his cock with each thrust.

"That's so hot," Dennis moaned. "Fuck."

"I'm ready for you," Ben rasped.

Dennis got behind Ben, and Neryt could feel it in the Force when Dennis was inside him. Ben and Neryt both moaned. Dennis reached around to grab Ben's collar, and kissed Ben's neck and shoulder, keeping the same slow rhythm inside Ben, as Ben had inside Neryt.

Dennis fucked Ben slowly, and Ben fucked Neryt slowly, for a long time. Not just so Ben wouldn't hurt Neryt with it being her first penetration, but the slow rubbing inside her felt delicious, and she could feel herself edging towards orgasm again, yet wanting to keep savoring the sensuality of the experience, every movement and sight and sound... the feeling of love and closeness between the three of them, Force bond intensifying, weaving a magic circle around them of trust and safety that was warm and bright and shimmering, making Neryt's eyes burn with tears of joy. Ben's own eyes were tearful, recognizing the gravity and sacredness of this act of love.

"You feel so good," Neryt said, her voice shaking. "Not just your cock, but... you."

Ben kissed Neryt hard. "So do you." He kissed her again. "I feel like I'm coming home." He closed his eyes and sighed. "This is so right, being with both of you like this."

"Yes." Dennis tilted Ben's face towards his and they kissed, and Neryt whimpered, loving it.

Ben's fingers sped up on her clit, and Neryt began to roll her hips against his, urging him on a little faster. Dennis matched their rhythm, and Ben groaned deeply. "Fuck, his cock is good," Ben said. "It's like his cock was custom-made to fuck me just the right way..."

"Hnnnnngggggg." Neryt bit her lower lip, taking Ben's hand and guiding it to work faster on her clit.

"Next time," Ben husked, "it'll be Dennis inside you."

"Oh, yes..."

"And I'll be inside him." Ben and Dennis kissed again.

Neryt whined. "Fuckkkk..."

"And then," Dennis said, "maybe you'll suck one of us while the other fucks you... maybe the one you're sucking will get into a sixty-nine with you, licking your clit as you're getting fucked..."

"...sometimes licking the cock fucking you..." Ben grinned.

Neryt shuddered. "Fuck, yes, please..."

"We can all take turns orally pleasing each other," Dennis went on. "And when you've had enough experience that you're not as tight... maybe both of us will put our cocks in you at the same time..."

Neryt almost came from the delicious mental image those words produced. She bucked her hips and started working her hips faster, guiding Ben's hand to work her clit as hard as he could.

"Oh, she likes that idea." Ben nipped Neryt's lower lip between his teeth. "Don't you, sweet girl?"

"Mmmhmmm." Neryt kissed him hard. "I want both of you so bad..."

"So many things we can do together," Dennis husked. "We're gonna have so much fun, the three of us..."

"But we can still enjoy each other one-on-one too," Ben said.

Neryt nodded. "I like thinking about you and Dennis together." She bit her lower lip and gave them a guilty smile. "I saw the two of you in the orchard a few days ago, making love."

"Oh, did you." Dennis licked Ben's neck, and they kissed, and Dennis kissed and licked Ben's neck some more.

"That's so naughty, spying on us like that," Ben said.

"I think you should show her what naughty girls get and fuck that pussy hard," Dennis said, and then he began to thrust into Ben with wild abandon, hips slamming into Ben's. Ben began to thrust into Neryt in the same rhythm, and Neryt worked her hips back at him, shrieking with pleasure as Ben's cock rubbed her G-spot to a fever pitch.

"Yes yesyesyesyes fuck YES fuck me," Neryt cried out. "Fuck me, more, more, more..."

"Oh, fuck." Ben groaned. "Shit..."

"Such a nasty girl," Dennis growled. He kissed Ben hard, and slapped Ben's ass before fucking him even harder. Ben sped up inside Neryt, and Neryt propped her legs on Ben's shoulders, fucking back as hard as she could, whimpering with each thrust. The utterly filthy wet suctioning, slapping sound of their sex was almost louder than their three voices together, and just added to their excitement. It felt so debauched, so animal, rutting in hot, needy fucklust.

"More more more more more..." Neryt dug her nails into Ben's hips.

"Oh, fuck. Oh fuck oh fuck ohfuckohfuck..." Ben shuddered. "I'm not gonna last much longer in this tight, hot pussy with your delicious cock hitting me like that..."

"You want to come for us, nasty girl?" Dennis asked Neryt.

Neryt nodded, making a high-pitched whine.

In addition to Ben's fingers on her clit, Neryt felt a touch in the Force from Dennis - stroking her lekku without even touching her, his grey eyes locked on hers. After a moment of having her lekku pleasured, Neryt climaxed, shrieking Ben's and Dennis's names. Ben came inside her with a wild cry, and then Dennis groaned as he spent into his bondmate's ass, shivering with a full-body orgasm.

Somehow, the three of them wound up in a cuddle pile, with Neryt sandwiched between them. They held each other tight, as their orgasm continued coursing through them, waves of bliss shattering them, making them weep with joy. "I love you both," Ben told them. "I'm where I finally belong."

Neryt and Ben kissed, and Ben and Dennis kissed, and Neryt and Dennis kissed, and then the three rubbed noses and rocked together, sighing as the euphoria gave way to deep contentment.

"I hope that was everything you wanted it to be," Dennis said to Neryt before kissing her chin.

Neryt nodded. "Oh, Force, yes. That went well above and beyond my expectations." Neryt sighed again. "Everyone should have a first time as lovely as this."

"We want to make every time that good." Dennis kissed her mouth.

"Or even better." It was Ben's turn to kiss her.

"Shit, you really are Death," Neryt quipped, and Ben gave a guilty grin before he laughed out loud. Ben so rarely laughed like that, that it made Dennis tear up, feeling like he could break with the feeling of love he had for him. For both of them.

They took each other's hands, and the candles went out, just as the rain came down harder. Neryt drifted off to sleep in their arms, feeling absolutely safe and absolutely loved.

_

As soon as the door to the Solos' villa closed, Malak, Han, and Leia were all over each other, groping, kissing, pawing feverishly as they stumbled to the bedroom. Once they were in the bedroom, the clothing couldn't come off fast enough, Han and Leia practically ripping off Malak's clothes, Malak and Han tugging off Leia's, Leia and Malak working on Han's. The clothes fell to the floor in careless piles, and once all three were naked, Malak picked up Leia in his arms and carried her to the bed, kissing her all the way there.

Han and Leia were on either side of Malak, and after Malak and Leia kissed for a few minutes, Leia pulled away and looked at Han. "What are we going to do with this sad boy?" she asked.

"I think we should cheer him up," Han said.

Leia tenderly stroked Malak's face, and smiled at him, her brown eyes warm and kind. "I really appreciate the fact that you tried to look out for my son," she said, "and were the first real friend he ever had."

"I'm sorry I didn't understand your son was the bad guy sooner," Malak said. "I truly believed he wanted to make a difference and clean the corruption in the Galaxy."

Leia nodded. "There was a time when that was his motivation. But it's clear now that his motivation is hatred and revenge. He wants to punish the entire Galaxy." Leia gave Malak a soft kiss. "You're not being disloyal to him by fighting against him. You're trying to give him a dose of tough love, shove him away from the corruption that the real Kylo must hate in himself, deep down. If there is any goodness left in him, he'll be reminded of that once you've broken him... but not until then."

Malak sighed, and nodded.

"You did your best. You loved what many would consider unlovable." Leia kissed him again. "You're a good man." Her voice softened, more seductive. "You're a good boy." She kissed his neck, and licked up his ear, to tease the sensitive point. "A good boy that needs to be rewarded."

As Leia continued kissing Malak's ear and his neck, Han got past his shyness enough to lean in and kiss Malak. Malak groaned, and ran his fingers through Han's greying chest hair. "You're so fucking hot," Malak said. "I love older men."

Han smirked. "Wow, you're not like your brother at all."

Malak cackled. "Well, there's old and then there's ancient. Dooku is a bit too old for my tastes, though he's certainly aged nicely. Sev can have all of that." Malak leered at Han. "I do like grey hair, though." He kissed Han again.

Leia moaned at the sight of them kissing. It had been too long since she'd seen Han with another man - not since Luke, some years ago - and she knew she loved it, but even she was surprised by how intense her arousal was, watching the sensuality between the two men. Her pussy was already hot and wet and ready, but now she could feel herself dripping, gushing... and they'd only just begun.

Leia kissed and nibbled at Malak's shoulder, and then she kissed down to his nipple, giving it a slow lick. Malak moaned, and Leia smiled as she watched his cock leap, and start oozing precum. Han groaned, and kissed down the other side of Malak's neck, making Malak moan louder. Han kissed Malak's shoulder and then he lapped at the other nipple before sucking it into his mouth.

For the next while Leia and Han worked on Malak's nipples together, one licking fast and the other licking slow, sucking in sync, one suckling as the other lapped, tongues swirling around the aureole, kissing the aureole and nipple, making Malak writhe and pant as his sensitive nipples were teased and excited until he felt like his cock could explode. As they worshiped his chest, Han and Leia's hands roamed over the rest of Malak's body, stroking the sculpted definition in his abs, caressing his hips and thighs, playing with his cock and balls. Everywhere they touched felt like being kissed by fire, and by the time Han and Leia took a break from his nipples, Malak's cock was completely slick with precum, red and looking urgent, almost angry in its need.

Leia smiled at Malak's glistening erection, but she wasn't through exploring him yet, and neither was Han. They each kept the fingers of one hand on his nipples, rubbing, pinching, flicking, as their mouths and free hands wandered, kissing and rubbing his perfect stomach, licking and nibbling along the treasure trail to his thick dark bush, licking and kissing and caressing his thighs, even lifting a leg to rain kisses over his calves, watching them break out into gooseflesh at their attentions. They kissed around his cock, at the seam of his crotch, and back up his chest, and Malak heard himself whimper with frustration, even as what they were doing felt so good, made his body sing...

That little whimper, almost a sob, made Leia give in just a little. With a predatory look in her eyes she leaned in to lick the head of his cock, make a show of his precum streaming on her tongue. "Oh, fuck." Malak shuddered, and before he could stop himself, he reached in to grab Leia's hair... and undid the updo, so it fell in loose tresses down her back. The sight of Leia with her hair down made Malak's breath catch. "Fuck, you're beautiful," he said to her.

Leia enthusiastically swallowed his cock down to the hilt, and Malak groaned, and then cried out as Han kissed his way up to start working on his nipples again. Leia sucked him slowly, almost maddeningly slowly, swirling and flicking her tongue, using her cheeks to massage the cock gliding in and out of her mouth. Each slow lick and clench-release of the inside of Leia's mouth made Malak moan, until he felt like he was making one long moan. Han's tongue rubbed at one nipple as his fingers rolled and pulled the other, building Malak's tension and pleasure higher and deeper, and the sight of them worshiping his body was just as delicious...

Leia sucked harder and faster, and Han kissed down Malak's chest to his abs, over a hip and thigh, and then he leaned in to take Malak's balls into his mouth. The surge of pleasure was so intense that Malak almost came, and then close to it again as Han worked his tongue, kissing the balls. Malak writhed and howled, the pleasure bordering on unbearable. Every time he felt like he was going to shatter and climax, the tension ascended to a whole new level of excitement, pressure expanding, consuming him with feverish, animal lust.

Just before Malak could come in Leia's mouth, Leia pulled off. "I can't take it anymore," she said, and showed Malak her soaked pussy. Malak licked his lips, and Leia straddled his face, letting him taste her... as Han resumed where Leia left off, taking Malak's cock into his mouth. Malak moaned into Leia's cunt, and Leia grabbed the points of his ears and began riding his tongue.

Leia fucked Malak's mouth until she climaxed, gushing all over his face. Malak groaned appreciatively, savoring her cream. He still hadn't come yet - Han was edging him too, reveling in the power he had over the young Sith Lord's body. Leia pulled Han off Malak's cock, and watching them kiss with Han's mouth full of Malak's precum made Malak groan with lust. Han and Leia's kiss turned open-mouthed, tongues licking together, the two of them smiling mischievously, communicating their plans for the young man through their Force bond.

Leia straddled Malak, and Malak watched as his cock pushed into her creamy cunt, creaming even more as her pussy lips kissed the length of him. Malak took a few slow thrusts, and then Leia rode him - not slow but not too fast, not yet - her beautiful breasts bouncing. Malak moaned at the sight of her tits, and her cunt taking his cock again and again. "Fuck, I want you," Malak growled.

"I want you too." Leia ran her hands over his chest. "I've been wanting you for some time now."

Malak groaned. "So've I." He shuddered. "I didn't want to go there and piss off Kylo."

"Such a thoughtful boy." Leia began to play with her clit. "This is what good boys get, Malak."

"Fuck." Malak shivered again. "I need to come so bad."

Leia's free hand caressed his nipples. "I bet you do."

Han gave a smug, impish smile, and he kissed Malak before he positioned himself, straddling Malak's face, back to the wall, facing Leia. Malak greedily took Han's cock into his mouth, moaning, and Han cried out when Malak had taken all of it. As Malak began to suck, working his head, Han leaned down in the sixty-nine position and started lapping Leia's clit. Every now and again his tongue brushed Malak's cock.

They fucked like that for what felt like a delicious eternity - Han's cock in Malak's mouth, Han's tongue going back and forth between Leia's clit and Malak's cock working in and out of his wife's cunt, Leia riding Malak with abandon. Their cries got louder and louder, the bed rocking against the wall, and the filthy sounds of sucking and slapping were just as loud.

Han shot first, coming in Malak's mouth, and Malak was so turned on that he started banging into Leia, which set her off. The feeling of Leia's pussy contracting with orgasm gave Malak his reward, finally, coming inside her, an orgasm so intense that it made Malak cry, feeling like his body was turning to bacta with the deep relief, the beautiful euphoria.

Han climbed off Malak's face and Leia leaned down to kiss Malak's mouth and share her husband's cum. Han found himself getting aroused again, watching them savor his cream, and when Malak started kissing Leia's nipples, Han began stroking his cock, ready for more.

"I'm glad you've got an appetite," Leia purred.

"With tits like these in my face, it would be a crime not to." Malak sucked Leia's nipple even harder, making her gasp. Malak swirled his tongue around the nipple before lapping it some more, and groaned as he took it back into his mouth, pulling it with his lips. He licked it slowly, then, and Leia moaned, grabbing his ears. "You are one lucky bastard," Malak said to Han. "It's generous of you to share."

"I'm pretty lucky myself," Leia said.

"Ohhhh yes." Malak winked at Han, and gestured for Han to come over. Malak and Han kissed, and Leia played with her nipples, and then moaned as Malak and Han each took a breast in their mouth, Han's fingers on Leia's clit, Malak's fingers in her pussy - he found the G-spot right away and pressed into it, rubbing back and forth.

"I want both of you inside me," Leia husked.

Malak and Han looked at each other. Malak hadn't done double penetration since the days when he, Dennis, and Sev had occasional threesomes, a long time ago, but those memories were delicious enough that he hadn't forgotten how it felt, cock rubbing cock inside a tight, hot, silken sleeve. Malak's balls tightened at the thought of his cock rubbing Han's inside Leia's cunt.

"Hnnnnggg, fuck, yes." Han sucked Leia's nipple hard, and then kissed Malak hard, and Leia grinned. She kissed Malak, and kissed Han.

"I'd like to ride Malak again," Leia said, "and Han, you can take me from behind if that works?"

"Oh, it definitely works."

Leia eagerly climbed on Malak's hips once more, and she and Malak groaned together as Malak's cock stuffed her pussy again. After a few minutes of just Malak inside her, Malak watched as Han positioned himself behind Leia, and wrapped an arm around her, tilting her face to kiss him as his cock began pushing inside. It was a tight fit, even as slick as Leia was, and the feeling of Han's cock rubbing up against his as he slowly worked his way in made Malak cry out, almost coming.

When Leia's pussy was completely full with Malak and Han's cocks, they paused for a moment, adjusting - the pleasure and excitement was overwhelming - and then Leia resumed riding Malak, slower this time. Malak rolled his hips, and Han matched Malak's rhythm, Malak pushing in as Han pulled out, cock rubbing cock, Leia's wet heat gripping them like a velvet fist. The pressure and friction electrified Leia's G-spot, and when Han's hand reached around to rub her clit, Leia almost sobbed, it was so good.

Malak cupped Leia's breasts, his fingers and thumbs playing with her nipples. "So beautiful," he groaned. "So fucking sexy."

Leia's hands caressed Malak's body, her fingers pleasuring his nipples in kind. "So are you." She rode a little faster and harder. "You're built like an Atrisian god." She stroked his pectoral muscles, the six-pack abs, and back up to his swollen, peaked nipples. "We are going to have so much fun with you."

"Fuck." Malak grinned, and bit his lower lip as a shiver of excitement went through him.

"So many different things the three of us can do..." Leia also shivered. "Or just me and you... or you and Han..."

Malak and Han both groaned. Han kissed Leia hard, and then started kissing, licking, and nibbling her neck, her shoulder.

"You like that idea, don't you, honey?" Leia purred.

"Very much." Han gave Leia's shoulder a playful bite. Now the fingers of his free hand were playing with Leia's nipples too.

"I'd love to watch you take turns fucking each other." Leia kissed Han. "You should tell Malak about how I found you masturbating to fantasies about him..."

"Really?" Malak's grin got bigger.

"He's been lusting after you even more than I have... and that says a lot." Leia's fingers stroked lazy circles around Malak's navel.

"He's fucking hot," Han said. "I can't help it."

"Well... now you get your wish." Leia started riding Malak harder. "Is it everything you hoped it would be?"

"Yes." Han shuddered.

"Mmmmm, you like feeling his cock rub all over your cock? Feeling your balls rubbing against his balls?"

"Oh, fuck," Malak and Han groaned in unison.

"Knowing that when you come, his cock is going to come all over your cock, and your cum is going to get all over his cock..."

Malak gripped Leia's hips and started fucking her furiously, and then Han matched his rhythm, and Leia howled, grabbing onto Malak, breasts jiggling deliciously as she worked her own hips, giving as good as she got, closer and closer to orgasm with every thrust. Han's fingers sped up on Leia's clit, and Leia made inhuman noises, trembling, eyes locked with Malak's, feral...

...They came together, all at once, screaming. The feeling of two hot cocks spurting inside her just intensified Leia's pleasure, as did the feeling of cock creaming on cock - there was something so primal about having one's cock coated with a lover's cum, and it set Malak and Han off into what felt like an endless orgasm, almost painful in its throbbing, where even their asses throbbed with how hard they were coming.

The three cuddled together, and for a little while it seemed like that was it, but the soft, sweet kisses got more passionate, and when Leia noticed Malak's cock waking up again, she pushed her nipple into his mouth and Han groaned, getting worked up once more from the sight of Malak sucking on Leia's breast.

"I want you to fuck my husband," Leia told Malak. Then she turned to Han. "As he's fucking you... you can eat all of that cum out of my pussy."

Han almost came just from that mental image. He couldn't get on his back fast enough. Malak laughed, and so did Leia, and Han chuckled too.

Malak spent a few minutes laying at Han's side, kissing him, readying him with his fingers. Between kisses they smiled at each other and stroked each other's faces, and the look of tenderness between them turned Leia on as much as the sight of them kissing. Han had a void in his life for some time now, and Leia could see that Malak would be the one to fill it.

And fill other things. Leia's cunt twinged - she couldn't wait to see Malak's thick cock fill Han's ass.

Leia watched as Malak kissed his way down Han's body, and began to worship Han's cock with his tongue, licking it all over, paying special attention to the head. He tongue-bathed Han's balls, sucked on them, pulled on them with his lips, and licked back up Han's shaft. Malak took Han's cock in his mouth and sucked slowly, one hand cupping and rubbing Han's balls, the other hand fingering his ass, one finger, then two, then three, fingering slowly, then a little faster, teasing the prostate just right. After a few minutes of slow sucking, Malak sucked Han's balls, and then his mouth found its way to Han's ass, and Leia groaned as Malak pushed his tongue inside Han's ass, rimming him, readying him to be fucked. Han writhed, clutching at Malak's head, arched to him, gently rolling his hips, fucking Malak's mouth.

"You like that, honey?" Leia asked.

"Oh, fuck, yes." Han grunted. "Fuck, that's good..."

"Mmmmmmmmm." Malak teasingly licked around Han's ass before tongue-fucking him hard, and then slower. He pulled his tongue out and husked, "One of these days, I'm gonna do this to you for hours, as long as you can stand it. See how many times I can make you come with just my tongue." Han cried out, loving the thought of that, and then Malak pushed his tongue back inside, eating Han's ass with a renewed hunger. Leia found herself rubbing her clit, so turned on by watching Malak rim Han that she felt like she could climb the wall.

At last Malak relented, and lapped the precum leaking down Han's cock, before coming up to kiss him some more. Then Malak pulled away. His own cock was pretty slick from Leia's pussy and Han's cum, but Malak poured extra lube onto his cock just to make sure. Malak watched as Leia straddled Han's face, her back to the wall, facing Malak. Han's tongue worked vigorously, hungry for the combined cum inside her cunt. Malak groaned, knowing Han was savoring the taste of him, and he pushed into Han's ass slowly. Once he was all the way inside, Leia leaned into him and Malak and Leia kissed.

Malak fucked Han slowly, as Han's tongue worked fast and hard inside Leia's cunt, his fingers fucking her clit. It wasn't long before Leia's delicious cries of pleasure urged Malak on faster, and then Han himself, bucking his hips back at Malak, fucking his cock. Malak seized Han's cock in his hand and stroked it in the rhythm of their fuck. He could feel in the Force that both Han and Leia were close, and Malak gave in, fucking as hard and fast as he could, pounding Han's ass the way Han hadn't been pounded in years. When Han came all over Malak's chest and stomach, Leia lost control, squirting on Han's face, and Malak came one last time, screaming as he spent into Han's ass.

Malak collapsed onto Han, and they kissed, sharing Leia's juices between them, and then Leia licked Han's cum off of Malak's body and kissed Malak, letting him taste Han's cum.

Malak lay between Han and Leia, their arms around him. He snuggled into them, and they held and rocked him; Leia stroked Malak's hair, and Han nuzzled Malak's nose, and Malak gave a soft sigh of contentment as sexual release gave way to sleepiness.

"I could get used to this," Malak said.

"Good." Leia kissed Malak's forehead. "So could we."

Soon the three of them were asleep, entwined.

Chapter Text

The next few days passed by fairly uneventfully, and then the day of Leia, Qui, and Obi's wedding approached; Dooku was also taking Sifo-Dyas as his blood-brother that same evening. In the afternoon, Sev showed up at the Solos' at his usual time for giving Han his Force lessons - he wasn't alone. He had Dooku and Irina with him.

Han took one look at the three of them standing outside his door and he groaned. "Ah, shit, what did I do."

Sev laughed. "I love how you automatically assume you're in trouble."

"Han's always in trouble," Leia quipped, and playfully swatted his ass.

Leia invited Sev, Dooku, and Irina in, and they sat with Han in the living room as Leia made tea.

"So what's this about? Why are all three of you here?" Han scowled.

Sev and Dooku looked at each other, and then Dooku and Irina looked at each other, and Irina gestured to Dooku. Dooku gave a small clear of his throat, straightened his sleeves, and sat up in his chair. He looked straight into Han's eyes. "Your DNA results came back."

Han waited.

Dooku said, "Han... I am your uncle."

"...what."

Dooku and Irina looked at each other again, and this time Irina spoke. "We had a middle brother named Istrell. He was in an arranged marriage - our generation was the last to have to endure that custom. He had a son named Adan, by his wife, but he also had a Togruta paramour who gave birth to Neryt... in the same year that you were born." Irina sighed. "Apparently, the Togruta woman wasn't his only lover on the side."

"My brother was also killed when Neryt was a few months old - hence why Irina raised her. Neryt was given to her for safekeeping, to protect her from the men who murdered my brother." Dooku narrowed his eyes. "It may be that your mother also fled to Corellia to keep you out of harm's way, and when you say you were 'just left' somewhere... she may very well have met with the same fate."

"Considering how many of us have parents who were murdered?" Sev frowned and folded his arms. "More likely than you think."

"So... I'm a Dooku." Han's jaw dropped.

"Yes." Dooku nodded gravely. "You are not just a Dooku, but as a Dooku you are entitled to some of the family fortune... which is quite substantial."

"Holy. Fucking. Shit." Han let out a low whistle. "You know how long I've been barely scraping to get by? I was a smuggler. I'd always thought I was out of Princess's league over here. I'm an actual bonafide Count with an inheritance?"

"Indeed you are. You also have a few surviving blood relations - myself and my sister, obviously... your half-brother Adan is long since dead, but Neryt is your half-sister."

"Oh shit, so Ben is banging his aunt?" Sev cackled.

"We wanted to break the news to you privately first, before we inform Neryt and Ben," Dooku said. "Because of the unique circumstances surrounding all of... this... I doubt very much that it will negatively impact their relationship -"

"-especially considering Ben's mom is doing her brother, Ben's husband-to-be does his brothers and one of those brothers is married to his cousin..." Sev laughed harder. "Our family tree is a pretzel."

"A salty, salty pretzel." Leia came out with tea. She sat down next to Han and put an arm around him. "Since you're Dooku's nephew, and Dooku adopted me... we're technically cousins."

"Well, shit," Han said.

Sev grinned. "It's almost like the Force wants to punish Kylo by squicking him out as much as possible."

"And not just Kylo." Leia laughed. "Can you imagine the look on my father's face if he found out I married Tyranus's nephew?"

Dooku smirked. "We Serenni have a belief that the ancestors continue to guide us after their death. And a Sith always gets his revenge. I have to wonder if the part of me that was one with the Force guided you to each other as a way to pay my regards to dear, dear Anakin Skywalker."

_

The entire family gathered at Dooku's palace in the evening for the ceremonies, including Ari. In addition to the excitement generated by Sifo's adoption and the triad wedding, some of the group were leaving in three days for a "diplomacy tour" that would visit the Mid-Rim worlds of Eshan, Kashyyyk, and Mandalore, trying to convince the warrior cultures of the Echani, Wookiees, and Mandalorians to ally themselves with CIS. The group heading out consisted of Dooku, Sev, Yoda, Chewbacca, Malak, Reine, Han, Leia, Neryt, Dennis, Ben, and their children; Sifo-Dyas and Jocasta would rendezvous with them on Mandalore. Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan were staying behind on Serenno and offered to look after Sev and Dooku's cats, including sending holos of the kittens, one of whom they had their eye on adopting when he was weaned.

"I'd also like you to come with us," Dooku said to Ari.

Ari raised his eyebrows. "Really."

Dooku nodded. "The children should have their therapist close by in case they're frightened or upset, but also, being that you are a psychologist, we could use your analytical expertise as well as potentially helping us with negotiations."

"I agree," Dennis said. "And it'll give us a chance to catch up some more."

"All right." Ari flashed Dennis a dazzling smile, and Sev noticed Dennis blushed a little in response. Sev kicked Dennis under the table, and grinned into his wine.

"So on the topic of cousins and other relations..." Dooku cleared his throat and looked at Han.

Why does it have to be me to announce this. Han rolled his eyes. "The DNA test came back, and I'm, uh... Dooku's nephew."

Ben almost spat his wine. "Really."

Han nodded. "Neryt's my half-sister."

Ben and Neryt looked at each other.

"Oh, OK." Ben continued eating.

"So that doesn't weird you out?" Han asked.

Ben cackled. "We're in this family." Ben gave Ari a pointed look. "I'm surprised you haven't lectured us about the shenanigans."

"You're all consenting adults," Ari said, sipping his wine. "You try to be discrete around the children, and you would kill anyone who was inappropriate with them. Besides, I'm half-Echani and cousin marriage is fairly common on Eshan."

"My own parents were cousins," Dooku said. "They were also rumored to be half-siblings. Cousin marriage is common on Serenno as well."

"Anyway..." Irina elbowed Mace, who was quietly snickering. "Han, after you all have come back from your trip, we should formally welcome you into the family and present you before the other Counts and Contessas."

Han looked profoundly uncomfortable with this, enough that he squirmed in his seat. "This is all a lot to take in," Han said, swirling noodles on his fork. "I'm still wrapping my head around the idea that I even have family, let alone rich family who are... Counts and shit."

The phrase "Counts and shit" made Dooku and Irina both bitchface - their sibling resemblance was at its strongest when they did - and now Mace's snickering was less quiet, and Sev and Neryt joined him; Sev turned red, shaking with laughter, and when Dooku glared at Sev, he just laughed harder.

"And this is exactly why it's a lot to take in," Han said. "I'm from Corellia. We're really not... well... good at formality."

Sev nodded, calming down a little. "It's been a bit of an adjustment for me too."

"Nobody's asking you to change who you are," Irina assured him. "This is simply acknowledging that you have a place here."

"Personally," Dooku said, "I'm rather proud that you're my nephew, knowing what I do about your time in the Rebel Alliance."

Good save. Sev grabbed Dooku's knee under the table; Dooku's response was to rub Sev's knee, sliding up slowly to his thigh.

"Yeah." Han sighed. "There isn't much I'm proud of, but I suppose I got that part of my life right."

"Han, you should stop selling yourself short," Leia said.

"I have a son who decided Snoke was a better father than I was, OK? All that good I did during the Rebellion, well, it sure undid itself, now we're looking at something even worse than Vader's Empire. Because of me. We have to go to war because I fucked up as a parent." Han got up from the table. "Excuse me." He took off.

Leia facepalmed. "Please excuse me for a moment." She got up and went after her husband.

After a moment, Malak and Reine looked at each other, and Reine nodded, and Malak got up from the table.

Han was outside on one of the benches, near Dooku's rose garden, when Leia and Malak found him. Leia put her hands on her hips.

"Han, your dinner's gonna get cold," Leia told him.

"Yeah. I'll be back in a few minutes. I just needed... to breathe." Han sighed.

Malak sat down on the bench next to Han. Han looked away. "Look at me," Malak told him, and Leia could feel the Force behind Malak's voice. Han turned his head slowly.

"You remember the night of Leia's birthday, when you gave me a reality check about Kylo?" Malak asked. "Now I'm returning the favor." Malak took a deep breath. "Everyone makes mistakes. Kylo painted a pretty unflattering picture of you. But when I got to know you for myself, I saw that you've been trying. You tried to reconcile with Kylo, and he stabbed you for it... and honestly that says more about him than about you. And the very fucked up truth about what we're dealing with is that it wouldn't matter if you were the Galaxy's most perfect dad. Snoke is the current host for Valkorion, who's been fucking with us for at least four thousand years. Snoke had his eyes on Ben and Kylo since they were babies. He, through Sidious hosting him, created a prison for Ben when Alderaan was destroyed, before Ben was even born. Snoke was going to get his hands on Kylo and corrupt him even if your relationship with Kylo was not dysfunctional. If Kylo had been perfectly happy and content with his life, Snoke would have still found a way to manipulate him to his side of things. You can't blame yourself for Kylo joining the First Order."

"I still fucked up."

Dooku and Sev were now also outside, observing.

"Raising a Force sensitive child is not easy," Dooku said. "Even I with my Jedi training struggled with my padawans. Master Yoda with his hundreds of years of experience still struggled with me. Master Windu most likely has stories about his padawans as well. You didn't even have the training we had, to deal with your son's abilities and his alignment."

Han sighed. "No. And one of the reasons why I keep insisting I fucked up is because he was clearly on the Dark Side of the Force even as a kid, and when that started manifesting, I didn't handle it well."

"No, because you only had experience dealing with Jedi, and the only examples you had of Sith were Vader and Sidious. You didn't know that many of us on the Dark Side of the Force are idealists and we work with the Dark Side because justice is sometimes necessarily severe."

"It's not just that, though." Han looked at Dooku. "When I was six, I killed a guy. With just the Force. I was on my own then, and he was the first kind stranger to offer to take me in. He... ah." Han winced.

Dooku also winced, and then there was a pause, and Dooku said, "When I was six, I also killed a man, with just the Force, because he tried to molest me. He was one of my mother's lovers and my mother didn't believe me - she was already less than thrilled with my Force sensitivity - and she actually wanted me executed. The Jedi only midichlorian tested on Serenno once every ten years in those days, so my cousin contacted the Jedi Order and had them collect me before..." His voice trailed off.

Han looked down.

After a few minutes, Han said, "When Kylo started... fighting back against bullies... I reacted badly because it triggered me. It reminded me of that scared little kid I was, who felt awful for having killed someone, and I didn't just want to keep him from turning into Vader, I wanted to keep him from feeling as horrible as I felt."

Dooku nodded. "I understand. In my own case, I overcompensated and tried to be the very best Jedi the Order ever had, not simply because I felt I owed them my life from rescuing me from my mother, but because of the guilt I carried. I was rather strict and severe with my padawans to try and keep them on what, in those times, I thought was the 'right' side of the Force. I didn't want them to feel the horror I felt. And yet... we did what we must - there is no shame in what you or I did to protect ourselves. We also did only what we could do with what we had - your limited understanding of the Force, and in my case the strictures of the Jedi Code. And now, we do what we must, with what we have - we are Sith. This is what the Force has given us, to save the Galaxy and protect our family. And Malak is right - even if your relationship with Kylo had been better, Snoke still would have found a way in. Darth Plagueis - one of Valkorion's hosts - was said to be the most powerful Sith who ever lived. He has only increased in power since that time. What we must do now is stop Kylo Ren. If there is any hope for him... it is going to be hard-won. It is not going to be won by flagellating ourselves about what we could have done differently in the past."

"Dad's right." And then Leia smiled a little - the word had just slipped out; it felt natural to call Dooku that. Dooku gave a small smile back, and Sev squeezed his hand.

Malak put an arm around Han.

Leia put her hand on Han's shoulder. "Do you want me to postpone the ceremony with Qui and Obi tonight? They'll understand if you need me."

Han shook his head. "Old Ben deserves this much."

"And I'll take care of him, tonight," Malak said. He gave Han a little kiss.

"OK. If you change your mind, we still have time," Leia said. Han kissed Malak back, and the kiss was deeper, more intense, making both men moan. Leia smirked. "Or not..."

A few minutes later, the group returned to the dinner table. When Malak sat down next to Reine, she asked him in the Force, How is he?

A little better, but he's dealing with a lot.

Malak was going to ask Reine if she minded if he took the night to spend with Han, but Reine beat him to it. Since Leia's going to be with Obi and Qui tonight, why don't you spend time with Han? Neryt will keep me company.

All right. Malak leered. The two of you are finally gonna get it on, huh?

Reine nodded, biting her lower lip. She's been having fun with Ben and Dennis all week - now I finally get a turn.

Malak gave Reine a little fistbump under the table, and then they kissed.

_

The blood-brother adoption was first. Qui-Gon came out wearing the Singer's green cape, carrying the staff - both items looked like they had been made just for him, as opposed to passed down for generations. Dooku felt proud of his adopted son, and told him as much in the Force, which made Qui smile and tear up a little.

Sifo-Dyas came out wearing a brown cape like the Counts and Contessas of House Dooku traditionally wore - it was a "welcome to the family" gift. He and Jocasta exchanged a quick kiss as Sifo made his way forward. Before the ceremony started, Sifo and Dooku looked at each other for a moment, and Dooku felt himself getting emotional. Sifo had forgiven him a couple of months ago, but this, here and now, was a permanent tangible reminder of that forgiveness. It was still more than what Dooku felt he deserved, but he was starting to understand the Force had other opinions and it was foolish to disagree with the Force.

The thirteen years that Dooku had been apprenticed to Sidious were the loneliest of his life - even lonelier than his first six years on Serenno, as a friendless small child with a mostly-absentee father and an abusive mother. Dooku had missed Yoda, Qui-Gon, Jocasta, and Sifo a great deal, especially Sifo, his best friend, who he had fallen out with years before leaving the Jedi Order. Sifo had been like a brother to him, and Dooku was beyond grateful to have his brother back, especially at a time when the future was so uncertain as to be terrifying - he knew he must go to war, he had to try one last time to set the Galaxy right... but so much had changed in the over fifty years since his death, the Galactic political landscape wasn't what it was, technology had marched onward, and the Dark Side conspiracy of which he had been a pawn was far worse than he realized, even when he knew in his final moments that he'd been had. It was reassuring to know that as much as many things had changed, some things stayed the same - the heart-bond he had with his best friend... that this time, they had each other's backs. Dooku would not kill Sifo again, unless it was a mercy kill. He would kill to protect his brother, and he knew Sifo would do the same for him.

They were swearing this with blood, by the Force itself. It was a simple ritual, but one that carried a tremendous amount of weight... in this case, weight that could break the wheel of Jedi versus Sith, Republic versus Empire, that had been spinning on and on to insanity, never accomplishing the real progress that the Galaxy needed. Sidious had known that, and been afraid of its power enough to demand that Dooku kill his best friend.

Dooku and Irina lit the candles on the House Dooku ancestor shrine on the fireplace mantle, and from the flame for the candle for the first Dooku, Dooku and Sifo each lit a candle, and carried the candles down an aisle of candles, to an unlit candle resting on a small table.

Sifo set his candle down, and so did Dooku. Sifo presented his empty hands, and Qui-Gon unsheathed the Singer's antler-handled knife. "I know you as my brother," Sifo told Dooku. Qui-Gon cut Sifo's wrist, and the blood flowed onto Dooku's upturned hand.

Then Dooku said, "I know you as my brother." His own wrist was cut, and the blood flowed onto Sifo's upturned hand.

Sifo and Dooku then dripped their blood on the unlit candle, and lit it together.

"In fire and blood, I pronounce you brothers," Qui-Gon spoke. "Sifo-Dyas is brought by the mighty ancestors into House Dooku, and House Dooku is greater for his presence in it. What the Kalae has brought together, let no man put asunder."

Sifo and Dooku took each other's hands, and squeezed them. Dooku saw that Sifo was teared up too, and he felt less self-conscious about his own teary eyes. Jocasta and Sev came over to them and the four group-hugged. Then Sev put Sifo in a headlock and gave him a noogie.

_

After a brief intermission with snacks and beverages, the wedding ceremony for Qui, Obi, and Leia started. They came out into the living room wearing flower crowns. Dooku felt they looked somewhat ludicrous. Then Qui-Gon put a flower crown on his head.

Dooku bitchfaced.

"Since you're officiating the ceremony and all..." Qui-Gon grinned.

Sev put an arm around Dooku and kissed his cheek. "You look mahvelous."

Dooku rolled his eyes, but didn't take off the flower crown.

Leia stood between Qui and Obi in front of the fireplace, and Dooku got in front of them, facing the audience in the living room. After taking a moment to collect his thoughts, he gave a speech.

"Many of you know that the Jedi Order of my day taught 'A Jedi shall not know... fear, hatred... or love.' Jedi Knights were forbidden to take partners and have children; celibacy was encouraged. Yet, not all adhered strictly to the Jedi Code. And the predecessors to the Jedi, the ancient Je'daii Order of Tython, encouraged bondmates and children - nine thousand years had produced many generations of Force-sensitives. It is from what little history the Jedi preserved on its Je'daii ancestor, that we know about the existence of the lifebond vow - where two or more Force sensitives will deliberately create an energetic tie between them that dramatically amplifies their Force bond. Such a bond is not to be made lightly - while there are positive effects that can come from this bond, it also means that when one partner is wounded, the other partner or partners will be wounded in a similar fashion... and it means that if one partner dies, the other partner or partners will die. This lifebond will also ensure that the partners find each other again in subsequent incarnations. The lifebond was considered 'heresy' by the Jedi, and even now, Force sensitive partners may feel that the standard Force bond is good enough without going to this degree. To my understanding, the decision to take this from a simple commitment ceremony to a full lifebond vow was suggested by Obi-Wan, and in your own words, I would like you to tell the audience why."

Dooku stepped back, and Obi-Wan stepped forward. He looked around at the group, and then, after taking a moment to formulate his own response, he said, "I fell in love with Qui-Gon when I was still a teenage boy, newly his padawan, already on my way to becoming a man - I physically developed faster than my peers, I had to start shaving when I was fourteen. Qui struggled with my feelings for him... and his for me. He had a history of being at odds with the Jedi Council, but even beyond a relationship being grounds for expulsion from the Order, he didn't want to take advantage of me. He waited until the birthday when I was of legal age, and I had to beg him. Qui-Gon was everything to me - some might say I was too young to understand what love was, but our love felt... as old as time. And of course, now that I know about our travel through lifetimes in this ka-tet, I better understand why. We had found each other yet again. Having a lover who was also my mentor, and my brother-in-arms, created a depth to the relationship. It felt sacred. And when I lost Qui-Gon, I felt like a part of my soul died. When I drank alone in the desert all those years, I was not just mourning the Jedi Order, the downfall of my brother Anakin, and the murder of younglings, blaming myself for it somehow... I was mourning Qui, most of all. I blamed myself for his death at Maul's hands... and there was an empty void in my life. I'd had a few other partners, but it never felt the same."

Obi-Wan turned to Leia. "When I met Leia Organa as a young woman, she captured my heart instantly the same way Qui-Gon had. I often thought to myself it was a shame she wasn't born earlier, because she and Qui-Gon would have liked each other. I liked her. But I knew she thought I was too old, and more than that, I thought I was too broken for her. I felt that I had failed the Jedi, failed Anakin... even if she had found an old man like me attractive, I would have felt unworthy of such a strong, courageous, beautiful woman. So I quietly pined. I was one with the Force for a time, and now I am back stronger than ever... and it is in that strength I finally feel I have a chance to prove myself of her."

Obi took both Qui and Leia's hands. "But there is a part of me that is still fragile... wounds that can only truly be healed by time among the living, stealing back what was stolen from me when Qui-Gon died. I would not be able to bear it if I lost Qui-Gon a second time. I would not be able to bear it if I lost Leia. So I asked them to please take the lifebond vow with me. I do not want to exist in a universe where they are not at my side."

Sev blew loudly into a handkerchief. Everyone looked at him, and he made an inarticulate sob.

"Wow, you really are Mom," Leia quipped, and the audience laughed, except Sev, who just cried a little.

Leia clasped Obi's hand in both her hands, and squeezed. tears freely streaming down her face. "That's one of the most beautiful things I ever heard. And of course I had to accept." She looked at Han. "Han knows I love him very much, and that will not change. Same with Dennis. I am still with my other partners. Saying yes to this vow does not mean exclusivity. It means that there are special circumstances in this particular relationship." She cocked her head to one side. "Truthfully, Obi-Wan was my first love, also. Bail Organa had Republic news footage of the Clone Wars that I watched quite a bit as a little girl, and I thought Obi-Wan was the most handsome man ever, and I pretended to be a Jedi, with him as my imaginary friend. When I met Obi-Wan years later, newly come of age, my heart broke for him... all he had been through. I would have done just about anything to make him feel better, make the pain stop. You may have felt I wasn't attracted to you, but if you hadn't been such a bloody proper gentleman, I would have said yes, you know."

Obi-Wan chuckled, and then he cried, and then he laughed and cried, and so did Leia, hugging him tight.

"That said..." Leia stroked Obi's ginger beard. "I do find your younger self quite fetching."

"I've noticed you like younger men." Obi looked at Dennis, who turned red, and now it was Dennis's turn to laugh too.

"Like Master, like apprentice?" Dennis laughed, and Obi nodded; Obi had been Dennis's Sith Master.

"Wellllll... Qui-Gon isn't younger, and I like him just fine." Leia gave him a little kiss.

"No, he's not." Obi leered at Qui.

"So..." Leia attempted to be serious, and then she cracked up laughing, and then after a moment she did sober up. "It does seem fitting that the Force has brought us together, and I'm ready to do this." Tears formed in her eyes again. "I love both of you, and we're finally going to get our happily ever after."

Dooku was trying, and failing, to conceal his own tears. Sev put his arms around Dooku's waist, leaning on him, before Dooku stepped back to the center. "If there are any who have an objection to this vow being made, speak now, or forever hold your peace."

Nobody objected.

Dooku took Qui-Gon's antler-hilt knife, and cut his finger with it, dripping blood onto an unlit candle. "As the father of these uniting themselves, I give my blessing, and I bear witness to their sacred vow." He lit the candle, and a few red sparks leapt from the flame - Dooku's Force energy. All at once, the burning shadow of the first layer of Dooku's Force signature seemed to surround the entire room, his presence much larger than usual, and Sev knew that Dooku wasn't just witnessing as himself, but as his own Higher Self, the Lord of Silence of the Seven Light.

A Sith ritual mirror was on the small table where the candle had been lit. Qui-Gon took the knife and cleaned it, and then he cut his hand, Obi's, and Leia's, and they let their blood drip onto the ritual mirror. The entire room got dark except for the three of them, who glowed with a soft white light.

They spoke the ancient Je'daii lifebond vow in unison.

Today I commit to my lovers as my partners,
each of us part of a greater whole.
In the eyes of the Force, we are one.
Where they go, I will follow,
in heart and in mind,
in sickness and in health,
in pain and in pleasure,
in weakness and in strength,
in life and in death.
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge,
knowing and being known, completely,
in love eternal and immortal in the Force.

The three then touched their hands together where they had bled, and the audience watched as what looked like a cord of bright blue light wrapped around their hand, and then cast a circle around them of bright blue fire, surrounding and enveloping them, appearing to consume them... and then the Force energy calmed to simply a blue aura around each of them, that faded as they took a few deep breaths, drawing in the power of the lifebond, letting it take.

The room went back to its normal lighting a few minutes later, and Qui, Obi, and Leia looked their usual selves. Dooku embraced each of them to congratulate them, and then the three were hugged by everyone in attendance. At last, Obi scooped up Leia into his arms... and then Qui-Gon picked up Obi, an impressive feat of strength. They were being given one of the guest rooms at the palace for the evening rather than having to go back to their villa; Dooku and Sev were watching their cat, Midnight. The three newlyweds made their way to the guest suite, laughing all the way, and Dooku and Sev watched them, holding hands.

That'll be us, next, Sev said to Dooku in the Force.

Indeed. Dooku leaned in to kiss his bondmate. Now you better understand why I want to take this vow to you.

Sev stroked Dooku's whiskers, tears in his eyes. I love you so much. Sev kissed Dooku back. I'm still awed and humbled that you chose me.

Dooku led Sev down to their bedroom suite. "I could say the same thing," he said aloud, softly.

"Oh, Idis." Sev raised an eyebrow and gave him an incredulous look. "Really?"

Dooku gave a small nod. "When Obi-Wan made the part of his speech about how he feared Leia found him too old when they had met years ago, and Leia assured him that wasn't the case..." He squeezed Sev's hand.

"Oh, honey." Sev paused in his tracks. "I know I bust your ass and call you 'old man' a lot. But in case you haven't noticed? I like you being older."

Dooku sighed. "I do sometimes worry about that, yes, to the point where I'd considered borrowing Neryt's swoop bike and showing off for you." Dooku looked down at his boots.

Sev laughed out loud. "Seriously?" Sev clicked his tongue and shook his head. "You know how I really don't like hyperspace, and you watched me have a panic attack in the TIE fighter the day we met Ben? I would be losing my shit with you on a swoop, going at 600 kilometers an hour. It's not that I don't care if Neryt gets hurt, but... it's different, with you, for obvious reasons."

Dooku smiled a little. "I've noticed you do tend to fret over people."

"Yes, despite the comedic exterior, I am actually a hot mess of nerves, and a lot of my humor is a coping strategy to deal with anxiety." Sev frowned. "Number one, if I wanted to be with someone who acted like they were twenty, I'd be with a twenty year old, not a man in his eighties. Number two, I bust your ass about your stuffiness and your refinement, but truthfully, I like it. I find it very attractive. Number three, you don't need to do any of that shit to impress me. You already impress me. You can do flips and shit when we spar, and your stamina between the sheets is... almost frightening. That's not a complaint, by the way." Sev's frown became a grin, and Dooku's smile got a little bigger, even though he was self-conscious about smiling. Sev kissed the tip of Dooku's nose. "You're an old man but you're my old man and I like you just the way you are. If you truly want to ride a swoop, I'm not going to stand in your way - I'll just hide under the bed until it's over. But if you'd been thinking about it for the sake of impressing me... I want you. Not some put-on version of you." Sev wrapped his arms around Dooku and kissed him. Then Sev kissed along Dooku's jaw, up to his ear, and husked, "And I think you are so goddamn sexy, especially that white man fur."

Dooku blushed. He loved Sev's lust for him, but it still took some getting used to, after a lifetime of near-celibacy.

"So..." Sev pulled Dooku along to their bedroom suite. "I want to love my old man. Let's bond, and prepare for our lifebond vow in a couple weeks."

The moment they stepped in the doorway of their suite, Sev worked Dooku's belt, pulled down his trousers and briefs, and dropped to his knees. Sev spent a moment nuzzling Dooku's white bush, kissing around his cock, and then took a slow, teasing lick from head to balls, waking up the cock, before he took Dooku's cock into his mouth, swallowing it to the hilt, his green eyes locked with Dooku's dark brown. Dooku closed his eyes and shuddered with a gasp. When he opened them, Sev's eyes were still on his, and Dooku groaned at Sev's full lips suctioning, tongue swirling and rubbing in slow, lazy strokes as he moved his head back and forth. Sev cupped Dooku's balls with one hand and played with them, sucking harder.

"Darling." Dooku grabbed Sev by the points of his ears, and gave a sigh of pleasure. "You spoil me."

You deserve it. Sev teasingly let Dooku's cock slip from his mouth, and playfully licked it, like he was slowly eating ice cream. "And this beautiful cock deserves it." He lapped from the slit to the frenum and back again, giving that area special attention, knowing how much Dooku loved it. "This beautiful, delicious cock." Dooku was starting to leak precum, and Sev licked at it, drew the head into his mouth to kiss it, making Dooku groan.

After awhile Sev had Dooku's knees buckling, his entire body shaking, feeling like he could explode at the licking and sucking - every millimeter of his cock felt almost painfully sensitive, electric with tension and pleasure and desire and need. The love he could feel through their Force bond, the worship in Sev's eyes just made it more intense. Just as he knew Severin's body and how to make his bondmate a trembling, writhing, whimpering wreck, Sev knew what to do to Dooku, and reveled in watching him lose control. Dooku's balls tightened and the wild friction and excitement enclosed on him until he let go, crying out Sev's name as he spent in his bondmate's mouth, gratified by Sev's "mmmmmmmmm" as he hungrily swallowed it all down.

Sev came up and kissed him, letting Dooku taste himself, and then Dooku led Sev to the bed. Dooku removed the rest of his clothing along the way and Sev watched with hunger in his eyes. When Sev undressed, Sev saw the same hunger in Dooku's eyes, especially as Dooku admired Sev's proud, aching erection.

Sev climbed on the bed and Dooku joined him. After a few minutes of passionate kissing, their cocks rubbing together, Sev kissed Dooku's neck and shoulder and then he asked, "Idis?"

"Hmm?"

"Can we try something?" Sev stroked Dooku's face.

"Oh so many things we have tried, and have yet to try." Dooku's lips quirked, and his eyes twinkled. "So...?"

"I know that you and I keep ourselves pretty shielded in the Force, so even though we have a strong Force bond, there's still a bit of a filter there, for our own mental health. But for tonight..." Sev bit his lower lip. "Do you think we could lower our shields a little so I can feel what you're feeling, and you can feel what I'm feeling?"

"Yes, my love." Dooku kissed him.

Then Dooku began to kiss down the length of Sev's body, from his chest to his navel, and Dooku shivered as he felt something brush over his own skin even though he wasn't being touched or kissed those places. When Dooku took Sev's cock into his mouth, he was rewarded by feeling a sucking sensation on his own cock, and it created a feedback loop where Sev, in turn, felt Dooku's pleasure and it made him want to climb the wall with wild, hot excitement. Feeling Sev's intense lust brought out the animal side of Dooku, sucking him harder, growling into Sev's cock, and it wasn't long before Sev was on that edge of orgasm, and Dooku delighted in bringing Sev almost to climax and then pulling back to build it up again, each rebuild making the sexual tension stronger and stronger until there was no holding back, no point of return, and when the tension snapped, Dooku and Sev had one of the most powerful orgasms of their lives, coming together... twice the orgasm, double the release. Sev screamed so loud he had a feeling the entire estate could hear him, and he didn't care.

Ordinarily such an overwhelmingly intense orgasm would have finished Dooku for the night, but the sight and sound of Severin reaching climax played over and over again in his mind like a broken holo - so erotic that his cock stayed hard, wanting more. Dooku came up to kiss Sev and when Sev felt Dooku's hard cock brush against him, he gave that wicked grin that Dooku loved so much, found so incredibly fucking sexy. "Someone's hungry," Sev purred.

Dooku's response was to kiss him hard, and use the Force to bring over their bottle of lube. "I don't think I will stop being hungry for you until the sun comes up, my love."

"Promises, promises."

"Challenge accepted." Dooku bit Sev's neck, groaning as he felt a pinch in his own neck, and he groaned again as he pushed his fingers inside Sev and felt a teasing brush over his own prostate. They kissed, and Sev slowly raked his nails down Dooku's back, moaning as he felt the sweet sting. It was going to be a long, delicious night.

_

Neryt and Reine kissed under the shower, soaping each other with languorous, teasing strokes. They paid special attention to each other's breasts and pussies, soaping them again and again, moaning as the water sprayed sensitive nipples and clits. In the final moments of their shower, as they just rinsed off, they let their breasts brush together, and Neryt took Reine's hands and put them on her lekku. As Reine played with Neryt's lekku, Neryt had her first orgasm of the evening.

Reine threw Neryt on the bed, and shoved her legs open. Neryt's pussy was drenched from her orgasm, and Reine couldn't wait to taste it. She leaned in and gave Neryt's clit a tormentingly slow lick, making Neryt moan and writhe, fisting the sheets. Reine took that as a good sign, and did it again. And again. "Your pussy is so sweet," Reine said, before she kissed Neryt's clit, and Neryt cried out in response, clutching Reine's head.

For the next while Neryt's bedroom was filled with the sounds of Neryt moaning, and loud sucking and slurping at her cunt, sometimes with Reine making "mmmmmmm" sounds, savoring Neryt's taste. Reine worked on Neryt slowly at first, and then licked faster, sucked harder, until her tongue was wildly beating Neryt's clit, her full lips like a suctioning vise, moving her lips back and forth like she was giving Neryt's clit a blowjob. Just before Neryt could come, Reine dipped her tongue into Neryt's pussy and tongue-fucked the G-spot - more prominent in Togrutas, with a ridged texture, which made it fun to play with - and Neryt howled, her entire body trembling. Neryt had a tiny orgasm from that, and Reine licked more slowly, building Neryt's tension to a larger one, but not yet - edging and edging, her own pussy dripping at the sight and sound of the young Togruta woman losing control, playing with her nipples, desperately fucking Reine's mouth.

Reine let up and sucked on Neryt's thick pussy lips before resuming work on her clit, starting slow once more, going faster, faster, as fast as she could go, as hard as she could suck, kissing, slurping, and then decreasing the speed, slowly, so maddeningly slow. Slow then fast, fast then slow, on and on, until Neryt whimpered, "Please let me come..."

Reine's cunt twinged and she felt another gush of her juices, loving it. She was used to being submissive with Malak and she liked it that way - but being with another woman was a different experience, and Reine found herself enjoying a more dominant role with her little friend.

"Yeah, you want to come, baby?" Reine sucked Neryt's clit, and pushed two fingers inside her, fucking Neryt's G-spot.

Neryt let out a whine. "Please..."

Reine sucked harder, and then some slow licking.

Neryt shrieked. "PLEASE! DAMMIT!"

Reine laughed into her. "Oh... I love the sound of that, mmmmmmm..." She kissed Neryt's clit, slow and sensual.

Neryt screamed into her fist, gnawing it. Reine's fingers fucked harder, and when Reine added a third finger, she began to lick fast, licking in the same rhythm that had brought Neryt very close to orgasm a few times... and then...

Come for me, sweetheart.

Neryt climaxed, her body convulsing as she gushed on Reine's face, clenched around Reine's fingers again and again. Reine took a few last licks, savoring the taste of Neryt's cream, and then she came up to kiss Neryt, letting her taste herself. As they kissed, Reine guided Neryt's hand to her pussy.

Neryt had other ideas first. She bent her head and began licking Reine's nipple. Reine gasped and moaned, and grabbed Neryt's lekku without thinking about it. "Mmmmmmmmm," Neryt purred as she drew Reine's nipple into her mouth, sucking it hard. She licked around the aureole a few strokes, before her tongue fluttered and flicked the nipple some more, and then she kissed the aureole and nipple, passion flaring in her dark eyes. Neryt kissed the sweetly sensitive cleft between Reine's breasts, making Reine moan again, before she turned her attention to the other nipple, giving it the same treatment, licking, sucking, lapping, suckling. Back and forth she went between breasts, and then Reine kissed Neryt hard, kissed down her neck, and started worshiping Neryt's breasts, licking and licking and licking the nipple for what felt like an eternity, then sucking it so hard it was almost painful, before slow, teasing licks, then her tongue dancing feather-light, before hard, fast licking, fucking it with her tongue, slurping on it some more. Doing the same to the other. And then back to the left one, then the right, Reine's fingers caressing the curves of Neryt's body until they made their way to play with Neryt's pussy.

Neryt and Reine kissed again, and Neryt resumed working on Reine's breasts; now her fingers were on Reine's soaked pussy, rubbing it slowly, then faster. Neryt made a few more rounds from breast to breast, before kissing and licking up Reine's neck, to claim her mouth again. Then Reine licked up and down each of Neryt's lekku, playfully sucked the left lekku into her mouth, with Neryt almost coming again. Reine kissed down the lekku and back to Neryt's breasts, lapping and sucking and kissing, making Neryt's nipples as hard and excited as they'd ever been. They got even more excited when Reine's breasts brushed hers and the two women watched their saliva-slick, glistening swollen nipples rub together, nipple teasing nipple.

They kissed, and then Neryt gently pushed Reine onto her back and kissed between Reine's breasts, down her stomach, down the thigh, inhaling Reine's scent before taking her first lick. Reine moaned, and Neryt kept licking. Reine grabbed Neryt's montrals, gently squeezing and rubbing them; Neryt liked that, and moaned into Reine's cunt.

Neryt had never eaten pussy before - she'd been a virgin up to a week ago, before Ben's birthday - but she took her cues from the way Reine had eaten her, and decided to be nice and not tease as much, being Reine had been waiting to come for quite awhile now. With Reine's clit in her mouth and Neryt's fingers furiously banging Reine's G-spot, Reine gave into an intense screaming orgasm, and before she knew what she was doing, Reine pushed in their burgeoning Force bond, and Neryt climaxed too, without even touching herself.

Neryt and Reine lay there for a few minutes, panting, coming down. When the room stopped spinning, Reine pulled Neryt into her arms and they nuzzled, gazing into each other's eyes adoringly. Reine pet Neryt's montrals and lekku, and tenderly stroked Neryt's face. "You're so beautiful," Reine husked.

"So are you." Neryt kissed her.

That kiss was enough to get them worked up again, and after a few minutes of intense, passionate kissing, Reine rasped, "Sixty-nine me."

Neryt climbed onto Reine's face, and then lay down, her own face in Reine's cunt. She leaned in and began licking, in the same rhythm and pattern as Reine's tongue on her clit. Soon they added fingers, and moaned at the sloppy, wet suctioning sound of their pussies being fingered, combined with the sucking and sipping sounds of the work on each other's clits. "You taste so fucking good," Neryt moaned, sucking Reine's clit harder; Reine cried out and also began sucking Neryt hard. Neryt worked her fingers harder and faster, and Reine did the same.

"I love doing this to you," Reine said.

"Mmmmm... I love it too." Neryt kissed Reine's clit, and then fucked it hard and fast with her tongue. Reine started rolling her hips, and Neryt pressed her face in harder, loving the way Reine fucked her hungry mouth. "So hot..."

Soon Neryt was riding Reine's face, the two women grabbing onto each other's hips as their wild, furious tonguing brought them to the edge. When they could hold back no longer, they took each other's hands and cried out each other's names via telepathy as they screamed into each other's contracting, clenching, gushing cunts. They took a few last licks, giving each other little aftershocks of pleasure, before they came up, embraced, and kissed again.

And couldn't stop kissing. Reine pushed Neryt back onto the pillows, and Neryt's hands roamed over Reine's body as they kissed and kissed and kissed, sometimes open-mouthed kisses where they teasingly licked their tongues together. When Reine started kissing Neryt's neck, Neryt opened her legs again, arching to her lover.

Reine responded by propping up one of Neryt's legs on her shoulder, moving in until their pussies touched. Reine began to rub, and the feeling of their pussy lips kissing, clit rubbing clit, made Neryt cry out.

Neryt rolled her hips against Reine's, and soon was bucking her hips hard, the filthy, obscene wet slapping of their pussy fucking driving them wild with lust... wilder for the sight of their breasts bouncing in the rhythm of their fuck... thinking about their beautiful pussies together... and nothing had ever felt better. Neryt loved sex with Ben and Dennis, and she couldn't wait to have it again, but Force, it was like vulvas were custom-built to rub together, clit made to fuck clit. They found the rhythm that drove them both crazy, howling with pleasure as they fucked with abandon, and when they climaxed together, the feeling of pussy gushing over and into pussy made it that much more intense.

Kissing made them want it again. They both found themselves rubbing together once more, slowly to start, sensually kissing, tongue-fluttering... and then Reine rose up and rode Neryt hard.

Neryt grabbed Reine's tits, pulling and flicking the nipples. "Oh, Reine, more... more, more, don't stop!"

"Mmmmm... gonna fuck you like this and make you come and come and come as much as you can come, baby..."

"Yes, more, more..."

_

The moment they reached the Solos' villa, Malak slammed Han against the living room wall, kissing him as hard as he could kiss. Han moaned and wrapped his arms around Malak, and Malak reached to undo Han's belt, yank down his trousers and briefs, and then stroke the already-hard cock.

As Han's trousers fell to the floor, Malak began working on Han's shirt, somehow finding the patience to undo button by button, with shaking hands. Malak kissed and nibbled each inch of exposed flesh, making Han groan and pant, and then Malak began to undo his own shirt, lust raging in his brown eyes.

"Shouldn't we-"

Malak crushed Han's mouth to his, silencing him, and when Malak pulled away a moment later, he growled, "Right here. Right now."

Malak habitually carried a little lube with him for the times Dennis had a free moment. This was Han and Malak's first time together one-on-one - they'd had a couple threesomes with Leia since Ben's birthday. Malak ordinarily would have wanted to make this more sensual and romantic, but he got the feeling Han didn't mind, and wanted this as bad as he did - and indeed, it needed to be like this. They needed to just give in, and fuck the pain away.

Malak pressed Han against the wall, and then he had Han lift up one leg, then the other, with Malak reaching to grab onto him, hold him up. As Malak picked up Han, Han's legs around his waist, Malak used the Force to lube his cock, and then pour a lot of lube directly into Han's ass. Han shuddered and gasped. "Cold," he said.

"It's not gonna be cold in a minute." Malak gave him another hard, hungry kiss, as he pushed his cock into Han's ass. He went in slow, even though Han wasn't a stranger to bottoming - it was as much for himself, as he felt like he could come right away and he didn't want to finish too soon. Once Malak was all the way in, they both groaned together and Malak kissed him more tenderly and sensually, which made Han moan even louder.

Malak began to roll his hips slowly, kissing Han again and again. Malak could feel that Han was right there too, so close to coming - they wanted each other so badly - but he wanted this to last at least a few minutes longer. He needed to try to savor, as much as he could, and fuck if kissing Han like this wasn't fucking hot. Malak heard himself moaning, louder when they shared an open-mouthed kiss, tongues licking slow, then faster, before Malak's lips claimed Han's again.

You were always a good lover, Han told Malak in the Force, referring to when he was Atton Rand.

I cared a lot about you. I wanted to make it good for you. Malak looked in Han's dark eyes and husked, "I still do."

They kissed again, both moaning, and Malak took that as his cue to start fucking. Even as the lower half of his body was being held up by Malak, Han was still limber enough to work his hips a little, fucking back at Malak's cock, and Malak fucked even harder, holding nothing back, balls slapping against Han's ass with a wild fury.

Malak could sense in the Force that Han was dangerously close, and through the Force, Malak reached out to stroke Han's cock without touching it. Han gasped, and the shuddering cry he made was so delicious it almost set Malak off... but he needed just a little more. Malak pressed Han against the wall as hard as he could and kissed Han's neck, causing Han to make more of those delicious cries... and when their mouths met again, tongues slowly and sensually playing together, it was too much. They came together - Malak almost dropped Han, he was shaking so much, and that made Malak hold onto him tighter, enough that it would leave bruises... but Han found the almost bone-crushing grip to spike his pleasure higher, and it was also weirdly comforting. Han felt like it made him his.

They kissed once more, and then Malak helped put Han back on his feet, though he almost fell right over, a little dazed from the intensity of his climax. Malak helped Han walk to the bedroom, and they climbed on the bed together and held each other.

The cuddling felt right, like two pieces had fallen into place that they didn't know had been missing. Han liked the way Malak's muscular body felt against his - strong, protective, even - and Malak enjoyed the way Han's body hair teased him, especially Han's chest hair against his smooth chest. They looked into each other's eyes, and Malak tenderly stroked his face, as tender as he'd been fast and rough in the living room. Han felt a tightening in his chest, a burning in his eyes, not used to that kind of tenderness from people who weren't Leia... or Luke. Han had spent a lifetime putting up walls around himself, and here was someone he could let in... someone who made him feel safe, and he didn't entirely understand why. He just knew, somehow, that Malak would never intentionally hurt him.

Malak kissed Han's forehead, and then gave him a soft, sweet kiss on the lips, that turned into their tongues playing together some more, and Han felt his cock start to wake up from that.

Malak smiled at him. "You want to go again?"

Han nodded.

Malak gently pushed Han onto his back, and leaned in to kiss him as he eased into him. Malak rolled his hips slowly, and Han wrapped his arms and legs around the young Sith Lord, holding Malak with all of him.

_

Qui and Obi sat in the lotus position, cocks and balls pressed together. Leia bent in to take them both into her mouth - no easy feat - and the sensation of her mouth sucking at both of them, while their sensitive heads and frenums rubbed together, almost made Qui and Obi come right away. They had another near-orgasm when Leia fit their cocks between her breasts, and lapped at the heads, already leaking precum.

After a few minutes of this, Leia got between them and impaled herself on them. She faced Qui, and Qui pulled her in to a deep, intense kiss, as the two cocks stretched and stuffed her, and she needed a moment to adjust to the fullness - so full, almost painful, but also so good. When she was ready, she began riding them slowly, kissing Qui-Gon again and again, her fingers playing with his long, glorious mane and over his beautifully sculpted torso... especially over his sensitive nipples, still slick and swollen from Leia's and Obi-Wan's tongues a short while ago.

As Qui and Leia kissed, Obi's hands reached around to cup and stroke Leia's breasts, and he kissed the back of her neck and her nape, his whiskers making her break out in gooseflesh and shiver deliciously. Obi's fingers plucked at Leia's nipples, working them like a maestro playing an instrument, and when Leia began riding a little harder - but still keeping the pace on the slow side - one hand reached to play with Leia's clit. Leia cried out, and Qui-Gon groaned, feeling Leia's pleasure in the Force.

"That's a good boy," Qui told Obi. "Put those talented fingers to their proper use... please our sister..."

Leia's eyes widened, and she kissed Qui so hard it left him breathless, as she began to ride with wild abandon, bouncing frenziedly on their cocks. Qui and Obi worked their hips, and Leia grabbed onto Qui to steady herself, bucking harder. She was technically their sister since Dooku had adopted the three of them, and playing up the brother/sister relationship hit Leia's wildest, hottest kinks. It was a kink for all three - Dooku might not have been aware of it when he adopted them, but he had given them fodder for endless rounds of insatiable, nasty kinky fuckery.

Qui leaned in to kiss Obi-Wan, over Leia's shoulder, and then Obi-Wan proffered Qui a breast, cupping it as Qui lapped at Leia's nipple. Leia threw her head back and cried out, riding harder - her wild ride stuffed with two cocks in her dripping cunt made the filthiest, lewdest slapping, suctioning sounds they'd ever heard, and this just added to their excitement, building and building to fever pitch.

"Do you like that, little sister?" Qui kissed Leia. "Hmmm? Does little sister like her big brothers' cocks inside her?"

"Fuck..." Leia's nails dug into Qui-Gon. "Fuck, yes..."

"Mmmmmmmm." Qui kissed and licked Leia's neck, and then back down to the other nipple. "Our sister has such beautiful breasts."

"Yes, she does." Obi nibbled on the other side of Leia's neck. "I'm a bit jealous you get to look upon them."

"Well, you can still enjoy them, can't you?"

Obi gave a wicked grin, and then Leia felt something like a tongue on her other nipple, and cried out again - Obi-Wan was using the Force to pleasure her nipple, and it was incredible. Obi visualized sucking it, and Leia felt the familiar suckling sensation and screamed. Qui-Gon's mouth met hers again, drinking her cries, and he chuckled softly into her. He stroked her face, and nuzzled her, his warm blue eyes gentle and teasing.

"We love pleasing our little sister," Qui said, before kissing Leia again.

Leia couldn't ride hard enough. She was so maddeningly close, but her body kept her holding out as long as possible, determined to milk the brother/sister play for as long as she could, too deliciously depraved to want to stop...

"Such a naughty little sister," Obi teased. "Making us violate the Jedi Code like this." His teeth grazed Leia's neck.

"You're a Sith Lord," Leia laughed.

"Yes. Because passion for this drove me to the Dark Side." With that, Obi's nails dug into Leia's torso, and Leia moaned, giving a cry as Obi nibbled and nipped on her neck and shoulder.

"Our brother is so bad, having gone to the Dark Side," Qui said. "I think he needs to be spanked later. Maybe you could help me."

"Well, Leia's pretty Dark too," Obi said.

"Hmmmm. Well... the best punishment for a Princess is delayed gratification." Qui-Gon grinned, and with that, he used the Force to make Leia slow down. Leia whined, and Qui laughed before he kissed Leia again.

"And teasing. We shan't forget about the teasing." Obi grinned back at Qui, before he whispered, "My brother's cock feels so good rubbing all over my cock, inside you..."

"Ffffffffffuuuuuuuckkkkkkkkk." Leia shuddered. "Dammit, Obi-Wan..."

"Mmmmmmmmm." Obi tilted Leia's face so they could kiss. "I could rub and rub cocks with him all night long... and we've done so, many times... just rubbing our cocks together, coming all over each other again and again..." Obi kissed Leia's neck.

Leia made a particularly high-pitched whine that was almost embarrassing to her, but she was too far gone in her lust to care. "Fuck," was all she could sob in response.

"I love the way my cum looks in that ginger bush of his," Qui-Gon said.

Leia bit Qui-Gon's neck. "I need to come," Leia ground out.

"I'm sure you do," Qui said. "And you will. In time." He stroked Leia's face, and then just her chin, like an indulgent parent or big brother. "Little sister needs to learn patience from her big brothers."

"And her big brothers can't get enough of their cocks rubbing together inside little sister's hot, wet cunt," Obi purred.

Obi gave a small concession, rubbing Leia's clit faster and harder. The slow rub of their cocks inside her and Obi's fingers working her clit in circles, at last taking it between his fingers, pulling on it, fucking it hard... Leia had never been so aroused in her life, and she knew this was just the beginning of a new chapter with... her brothers.

After all the shit I've been through, this almost makes it worth it. Almost.

"Mmmmmm, I can feel how close you are, little sister." Qui kissed Leia. "Our brother has such skillful fingers, doesn't he?"

"Yes..." Leia whimpered.

Obi stopped rubbing, and stuck his cream-soaked fingers in Qui-Gon's mouth.

The sight of Qui-Gon sucking her juices off Obi-Wan's fingers drove Leia over the edge. She climaxed, as hard as she ever had, and a split second Qui and Obi came together, and the feedback loop of the three lifebonded spouses orgasming together produced an orgasm so intense it almost hurt... Leia found herself losing consciousness, and waking up a short time later, held in her brother-spouses' arms. Obi rained tender kisses over Leia's face, and Qui nuzzled her neck.

"Holy shit," Leia said.

"Indeed." Obi laughed.

"Oh, my dear love," Qui said, "the night is still young." He gestured to Obi. "Do you want to eat our cum out of her while I fuck you, or should you be the one fucking me?"

"Gahhhhh..." Leia's cunt twinged as her mind played scorching mental images of one's cock in the other's ass.

"I think we'll let you have the honor of tasting her," Obi said, "...to start."

Leia spread her legs, and grabbed Qui's hair as he buried his face in her, and moaned as he felt Leia's pleasure echoed on his own cock. When Obi took him from behind, Leia cried out, feeling like she was being penetrated as well. Qui looked up to give her that mischievous grin, before lowering his face again to dip his tongue inside her, worship the flower of her womanhood...

_

Hours later, spent and exhausted, Leia lay sandwiched between her brother-husbands again. It was the twilight hours before dawn, and Qui decided they could sleep late before going to the cabin they'd rented for the next two days.

"This was beautiful," Leia sighed. "Thank you."

"Thank you." Obi stroked Leia's face, and gave her a soft, sweet kiss. Then Qui did. Then Obi and Qui kissed each other.

They snuggled into her, and Leia pet their hair and beards. She felt so happy, having brothers again...

...and then a pang of sadness, missing Luke. Oh, Luke.

And then... for the first time in years, she felt him. He'd deliberately been hiding his presence in the Force from her - she knew he wasn't dead, but she otherwise didn't know where he was, what he was doing, if he was OK - ...and suddenly, she could feel just a little of his touch in the Force.

She wondered if some of this was caused by her lifebond with Obi-Wan, who also had a Force bond with Luke, being he had handled some of Luke's Jedi training.

But it wasn't just that. She didn't know why she could feel him again, just a bit, but something was going on. Something... big. Not necessarily bad, but important, definitely.

Leia tried "knocking on the door of Luke's mind", something she found she could do years ago. No response, not even a glimmer of acknowledgment.

But still... he was out there, and he was OK.

Leia wept with joy and relief, and cried herself to sleep.

Chapter Text

The first stop on the three-planet tour was Eshan, the Echani homeworld in the Mid Rim. It was a day from Serenno at full hyperspace. Dooku, Sev, Yoda, Chewbacca, Malak, Reine, Han, Leia, Neryt, Dennis, Ari, Ben, and the younglings Owen and Lysa were being given transport on a Resistance command ship, since this was official business; Sifo-Dyas would be taking the solar sailer when it came time to join the group on Mandalore. Finn and Poe were staying behind on Serenno to supervise the setup of the Resistance military base and continue the process of upgrading the Resistance's ships and weaponry with Dooku's funding - Sev had also given the Resistance his opinions on the current state of the Resistance MedCorps and cues that could be taken from the First Order MedCorps with hospital provisions and medical training, so a state-of-the-art military hospital was also being built and staffed.

Dooku was leaving his sister Irina as acting Regent, with Mace and Obi-Wan given authority to make military decisions in the event of trouble in the D'Astan Sector. Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon were also watching Dooku and Sev's cats, including the newborn kittens. In addition to Sev's reluctance to travel at hyperspace, he had a hard time tearing himself away from his cats, being he'd be gone for close to two weeks. "You be good for Uncle Qui and Uncle Obi, okay?" Sev kissed the top of Pookie's head over and over again. Pookie responded by giving Sev many headbutts, purring loudly, and as Sev turned and walked away, just before he could step outside the door of the suite, Pookie rubbed against Sev's legs with a loud chirp, and patted Sev's leg. Sev bent to scoop Pookie up and spend a few more minutes holding and skritching him, tears in his eyes. "I love you, baby," Sev said to the black-and-white cat. Pookie put the "paw of ownership" on Sev's arm, kneading, with what resembled a smug smile on his face, purring louder.

Dooku wasn't happy about leaving Drogo behind, either, but he felt a little better when he saw Drogo climb on Qui-Gon. "They'll be in good hands, sweetheart," Dooku told Severin.

Obi-Wan took Pookie out of Sev's arms. "Yes, they will." Obi cuddled Pookie, and proffered cat treats in his hand, which Pookie gobbled up right away.

Dooku rubbed Sev's shoulder, and then took his hands and led his bondmate to the spaceport. Sev swallowed hard when he looked at the Resistance command ship.

"We'll be back soon enough," Dooku said. "And think of this like... an early honeymoon." He gave Sev a soft, gentle kiss. "I can think of few more appropriate ways for us to celebrate our love for each other than me visiting your homeworld... the place that produced the man I love."

Sev smiled, but what he had a hard time articulating was this was at least some of his trepidation about going - he hadn't been back to Eshan since he left at age six, shortly after his parents' murder. Eshan hadn't been his home since then. Not even Corellia, where he spent the next twenty years of his life, felt like home. Serenno was his home - not just because of Dooku, but the landscape, the culture, the hospitality of the people - and he felt an ache at the prospect of being gone, even only for twelve days.

At least Dooku was with him. As they boarded the Resistance vessel and prepared for takeoff, Sev leaned on Dooku, and Dooku put an arm around him, leaning in to kiss the top of Sev's head. He buried his nose in Sev's curls for a moment, breathing in the lingering fragrance of the rose-scented hair wash that his bondmate favored. Sev heard him sigh with contentment, and he felt a little flutter - that sound would never stop being beautiful to him.

Almost as beautiful as the sounds Dooku had made earlier that morning, when he climaxed. Sev's cock stirred, remembering their intense, passionate lovemaking in graphic detail. His hand slid to rub Dooku's knee. He buried his face in Dooku's chest as the ship began to accelerate, preparing himself for the jump. Dooku heard Sev's whimper and he stroked his bondmate's curls. "It's all right, my love," Dooku soothed. "Just a little jump and then smooth sailing for some hours."

"I still hate the concept of even being in space, with just the walls of a ship between me and suffocating to death out in the middle of nowhere." Sev's hand rubbed its way up Dooku's thigh. Maybe you could help distract me.

I think I could, yes.

After the jump to hyperspace, when Sev had stopped shaking, Dooku helped him to their small quarters, and they spent the next several hours proving the old adage "in space, nobody can hear you scream" quite false.

_

When the ship arrived in the Eshan system twenty-six hours later, Sev, Malak, Dennis, Owen, Lysa, and Ari went to the observation lounge to look at Eshan from space, and then watch as the ship made the descent through the atmosphere, into the skies. It was an emotional moment for the triplets, who had not seen their homeworld in twenty-three years, and even Ari who had been back to Eshan some years ago found himself getting a little choked up; Dennis took his cousin's hand, and squeezed it as the first mountains came into view.

"Wow," Owen and Lysa said in unison.

"Wow is right." Dennis tousled Owen's hair, then Lysa's. "This is where Daddy was born."

Lysa looked up at Dennis. "We were born on Co-Core..."

"Corellia." Dennis nodded. "I lived most of my life there. It's where I met your mother."

"Why did you leave Eshan?" Owen asked.

"Bad stuff happened." Dennis frowned. He didn't want to explain parental death to a two-year-old, advanced intelligence or not.

"If bad stuff happened, why are we coming here?"

"Because bad things happen everywhere," Ari said. "But you have your fathers protecting you."

"Who's gonna protect Daddy?"

Before Ari could speak, Dooku walked into the observation lounge - he'd just finished a final holocall with the Echani Prime Minister. "We're all set to meet tomorrow," Dooku said.

Dooku stood on the other side of Sev and watched the view - trees looking like broccoli, with seemingly endless rivers running between them, now getting larger. They were almost at the spaceport.

"Are you ready?" Dooku asked Sev.

"To move my body?" Sev's legs were shaking again, as he felt the gravity shift.

"Well, I was talking about more generally." During their lovemaking, Dooku had picked up on Sev's mixed feelings about the Eshan visit, through their Force bond, and didn't know if Sev needed a little while to breathe, ground and center, before departing the ship.

"I'm about as ready as I'm ever gonna be," Sev said.

Dooku put an arm around Sev. Dennis hugged the children, and Ari put his arms around Dennis's waist. The group braced themselves in the final drop, and the captain of their vessel spoke over the all-call: "Welcome to Eshan."

_

They were spending three days and two nights on Eshan, before moving on to Kashyyyk. The first day on the Echani homeworld would be spent relaxing and seeing a few points of interest. The second day would be spent meeting with the Prime Minister and the Assembly to present the case for Eshan going Separatist, and going in the evening to visit the General Yusanis Memorial while the Assembly took a vote on Eshan's continued membership in the New Republic and prospective membership in CIS. The third day, before their departure, they would meet once more with the Prime Minister and Assembly to be told the results of the vote and why that particular decision was reached.

Like Serenno, Eshan had two moons, and like Serenno, Eshan was heavily forested, had many mountains, rivers, and small oceans. The capital of Eshan had an impressive botanical garden that was at the top of Dooku's "to-see" list, so after a delightful breakfast of Echani fruits and pastries, the group visited the gardens and appreciated the groves and shrubberies - Dooku was particularly interested in the roses native to Eshan, including the Fire Rose that Severin was named for.

The Echani and Serenni were also quite different.

The early settlers on Serenno and their descendants were mostly human; the Echani were a species of near-human with some biological differences from humans including women outnumbering men seven to one, and the Echani mostly had silver-white hair, pale skin, and grey eyes, though there appeared to be some variation in the shades of grey. Occasionally, one out of a thousand births, an Echani would be born with dark hair and eyes. The Echani also tended towards extreme sameness in families, enough where siblings looking distinct from one another - like the Yusanis triplets - was a sign of off-worlder parentage or ancestry, and the Echani were masters of reading body language in order to tell differences between identical siblings and in some cases, siblings and parents.

Serenni culture was a product of off-worlders on Alderaan who formed their own colony on a distant, wild Outer Rim planet, and their emphasis on noblesse oblige and polite hospitality came from needing to band together for survival. Alderaanian culture's emphasis on the arts and the harsh winters in Serenno's northern latitudes created a people who were extremely literate and appreciated craftsmanship more than most, and Serenno was well-known for its artists, poets, and philosophers.

The Echani had a very well-deserved reputation as being a warrior culture, first and foremost. Eshan and Serenno both had noble houses, but where Serenno's Counts and Contessas were descendants of its founders' children and saw themselves as caretakers of the people, the Echani noble houses were created through fame in battle - theoretically anyone on Eshan could found their own noble house, if they were renowned enough as a warrior. House Yusanis was one such example of this. The Echani had no royal family, but the Prime Minister was determined in a duel, often many candidates duelling to the death, and the position was held until a new challenger appeared.

Yet, the Echani were a different breed of warrior than the Mandalorians, Wookiees, and others - Echani armor was typically lightweight, and served an aesthetic purpose as well as being functionally practical. Echani weapons were also designed for their aesthetics as well as functionality. The Echani martial art bore a strong resemblance to Makashi; ancient Jedi had noted even non-Force-sensitive Echani could hold their own against them in a duel. Echani had very personal bonds with their weapons and armor that bordered on the religious; when Severin's past incarnation, General Yusanis, had died, some of his ashes were put into a limited-edition run of energy shield gauntlets named for him, and there were more than a few Echani who believed the spirit of Yusanis guided them in battle through these shields.

Serenno preferred to remain quiet and peaceful in its little pocket of the Outer Rim and not embroil itself in Galactic politics unless absolutely necessary; the Echani were notorious for being among the first to enter a conflict. And this reflected itself in the Echani national spirit. Unlike the Serenni who had no gods but revered ancestors and nature spirits, the Echani had a pantheon of seven, and its chief deity was a war god who was also a fire god and had the firebird as his emblem. The most elite warriors of the Echani were called Firedancers - General Yusanis had been one of them - who would perform fire spinning as a way of becoming one with the element of fire and "dancing like flame" into battle to "scorch" their enemies. Fire was a recurring sacred theme with the Echani, and seemed to exemplify their culture, and it was this fire that Dooku hoped to feed with his negotiations.

So in the botanical gardens, Dooku did something he felt very ridiculous and self-conscious about doing, but knew Qui-Gon would approve... and indeed, it was almost like Qui-Gon had given him a nudge in that direction, many systems away. As he leaned in to smell a Fire Rose, he reverently stroked one of its petals and asked, kindly, "Would you help me in my quest to save the Galaxy? Would you help your people? They would only be stronger for working with us."

When Dooku pulled his finger back, it accidentally grazed a thorn on the stem and he bled. After a drop of blood landed on the rose, Sev sucked Dooku's finger into his mouth, arousing them both.

Then Sev's lips quirked. "You're talking to flowers now?"

"Talking to a flower. A flower that you were named for." A pause. "A flower said to be sacred to the Echani war god that might very well be a different face of the Prophet of Fire."

Sev looked off to the side. He resisted the urge to roll his eyes and mutter "hokey religions," not wanting to offend Dooku - or his own ancestors. Sev suddenly felt acutely aware that he was walking on the same ground where countless generations of the Yusanis family had walked, and if they were one with the Force it meant they were watching him now.

_

After lunch, the group retired to their hotel - a very posh hotel in the capital, with a full-service day spa that included pools, hot tubs and steam rooms. Dooku and Sev opted for a nap, since they were still decompressing from their flight; they set the alarm to wake them an hour before dinner, which would be at Eshan's best steakhouse. Dinner would be before the last stop of the day - a visit to the mansion where the Yusanis triplets had spent the first six years of their lives, and the graveyard where Sev's parents, aunt Raskta, and first cousin Teddy had their remains. Dennis had suggested the trip, and their cousin Ari the therapist had agreed that it would be good "for closure", and Dooku encouraged it; Sev was dreading it.

It was in that dread, that Sev woke before the alarm. He had a flashback nightmare of when he found his parents' dead bodies, while he and his brothers had been playing hide-and-go-seek - in hindsight, the game may have saved their lives. Dooku woke up a moment later, feeling the disturbance in their Force bond.

"I need to distract myself." Sev ran a hand through his hair. He opted for a dip in one of the pools - water usually relaxed him. Reine and Malak apparently had the same idea, as Sev found them swimming together, or more accurately, splashing, chasing, and ducking each other. Sev smiled as he watched them. He knew they'd recently acquired new partners - Reine had Neryt, Malak had Han and Leia - but they were still primaries, and still, after almost three years, very much in love. Sev began his descent down the pool steps as Malak tickled Reine until she shrieked, and then he put her on his shoulders, piggyback. They smiled and waved at Sev once Sev was in the shallow end of the pool. Sev waved back.

"Where's the old man?" Malak asked.

"Back in the hotel room, having an attack of modesty."

Malak snorted. "It's not like we haven't seen his junk."

"Right, well you guys have, but random strangers haven't." Sev shook his head. "I don't think he has anything to be self-conscious about - I sure wouldn't mind seeing him in swimming trunks - but... you know."

"Yeah, I know." Malak nodded.

"I'll work on him." Sev poked his tongue out.

Sev floated on his back, staring up at the arched glass roof of the pool room, into the sun. He closed his eyes, feeling the warmth, and mindlessly completed a few laps, just floating. Then, without thinking about it, he felt himself levitate just a few inches off the surface of the water... until he felt like he was being stared at. When he opened his eyes he saw a group of Echani teenagers gawking at him, and Sev instantly dropped into the water, underneath, forgetting to hold his breath as he went under, his eyes and nose burning as he inhaled. He bobbed up, choking and spluttering, and when the teenagers laughed at him, Sev shot them a look of such pure ire that they ran away.

Sev felt that sting of embarrassment. The group had an unspoken but understood rule about not using the Force in public around non-Force-sensitives unless absolutely necessary, and Sev had broken that rule without meaning to. Sev was then reminded of his childhood and adolescence, when he suppressed his Force sensitivity as much as he could but it still had a habit of coming out and reminding his peers that he was not like the others. Sev's life had been hell as a teenager, and even though he would be thirty in a little over two weeks, he still felt like that hurt teenage boy sometimes... and here it was now, of course this sort of thing would happen on his own homeworld after not having been back in twenty-three years.

Sev tried to not let it bother him, but he was affected enough that he just couldn't get back into "the zone" and he decided to get out of the pool. He rinsed in the nearby showers, and then he returned to his hotel room, where Dooku was meditating. Dooku's eyes opened when Sev walked in, making a beeline for the fridge.

"Did the swim help?" Dooku asked him.

Sev opened a can of citrus soda and drank it, shaking his head. "Nah."

Dooku frowned. He'd hoped that Sev would be able to enjoy himself on this trip - usually he was the serious, weight-of-the-Galaxy-on-his-shoulders burdened one of the two, and Sev the more playful and free-spirited one, so seeing Severin brooding was cause for concern.

Sev flopped down on the bed. "I'm gonna try to go back to sleep for awhile. Wake me up an hour before dinner."

Dooku did, waking his bondmate with a rain of soft kisses over his face and hair, making Sev giggle. That was a positive sign. They rubbed noses, and when Sev sat up, after a yawn and stretch, Dooku pulled Sev into his arms, just sitting there holding him for a few minutes, stroking his curls.

Sev got changed into something dressy for the upscale steakhouse, and then Dooku brushed Sev's hair - something he liked doing, something that Sev found soothing and arousing all at once. After a good brushing, Sev applied a little gel in his curls, slicking them back, making his pointy ears stand out. Dooku smiled at them, and gave a pointy tip a little nibble on their way out.

"You sure love my ears," Sev laughed.

"And you love that I love your ears."

"A gift from my Alameenian mother."

"So I take it you've not seen Alameen, then?"

"Actually, I have. It's on the border between the Outer Rim and Unknown Regions - most people argue about whether it's Outer Rim or Unknown Regions - and the Finalizer took us there once, being it's Valyeris's homeworld." Sev pursed his lips. "I didn't really feel at home there, either. My mother left Alameen for Eshan, and probably had reasons for doing so."

Dooku nodded. "To my understanding Alameen was strongly Imperialist, and the Jensaarai were no friends of the Empire, so that very well might be the reason."

"One of these days we'll have to talk more about the Jensaarai, especially as it was a Dark Side tradition founded by one of your Dark Acolytes, that your teachings heavily influenced."

"Yes. But not tonight. We have enough ahead of us."

Almost too much. Mental images from the earlier nightmare came back, and Sev closed his eyes as they stepped in the turbolift to go down to the lobby. Dooku squeezed Sev's hand, and then Sev's ass, distracting Sev into giving that playful grin he loved even more than Sev's ears.

_

After dinner, the group took a speeder limousine to the Eternal Flameyard, a gravesite set up as a labyrinth - every two meters around the labyrinth there was a standing stone hewn with shelves that held ornate vessels that stored ashes of the dead; one stone was typically one family group, averaging five to thirty vessels per stone. The very top of the standing stones were hollowed out to hold a torch that would burn continually night and day, in honor of the dead. There were many Eternal Flameyards across Eshan, but this one in the capital had the remains of Alek Yusanis, Ryanna Savros, Raskta Yusanis, Teodor "Teddy" Yusanis, Baraka Synjat, and Rikal and Kaniri Yusanis.

As they approached the stone, Sev noted it held the remains of seven dead, and that observation gave him chills, moreso when he realized that only five of them were confirmed murders and Han and Neryt's father and Han's mother would make seven murders, likely by the same agents.

They weren't just doing this to kill our parents. It was some kind of ritual sacrifice.

Sev's hands began to shake. He was carrying a rose to place at the urns of his parents, and he held it tighter, the thorns digging into his fists.

Reine was bearing small bouquets and strands of pearls for Raskta Yusanis, Teddy Yusanis, and Baraka Synjat - the pearls were from Finn and Mace, who could not be with them on Eshan but wanted to pay their respects anyway. Reine went to the stone first, and after she lay the gifts at the respective places, she knelt before the stone and spent a moment in silent meditation. When she stood up she was trembling and crying a little - Reine, who was normally like a rock - and Malak immediately put an arm around her, pulling her close, stepping aside for Dennis and Ben.

After Dennis and Ben had their turn, Malak went forth to give his own gifts and moment of silence. Malak had been named Alexis for his father Alek - in his original lifetime as Darth Malak during the Old Republic, his given name had in fact been Alek - and Malak reached out to touch the urn of Alek Yusanis, looking distraught. When he walked away, he too was in tears.

Sev came forward, and lay the rose down between the urns of Alek Yusanis and Ryanna Savros, his parents. He didn't know what to say, and he found himself feeling numb - like his psyche had been expecting him to fall apart with emotions as the others were, and would not let him react. As a gesture of respect, he touched the urns of his parents, and then he touched the urns of Rikal and Kaniri Yusanis, grandparents that he had never met. A deep breath, and then he turned and walked away, into Dooku's waiting arms.

From the Eternal Flameyard the speeder limousine took the group to the mansion the Yusanis triplets had lived in until age six. Because of the murders, nobody had lived in the house for the twenty-three years since then, and it was preserved as a museum to House Yusanis, now a "dead house" on Eshan. On the ride to the mansion, Sev continued to feel numb, almost like he wasn't in his body and was observing everything from outside. Time seemed to pass more slowly. Because of this, Sev felt like it was a form of armor and was the first to get out of the speeder limo when it arrived at the mansion, figuring he would get through this and then it would be over and done. Sev led the group through the foyer, and they stopped in the living room, the kitchen, the study, each bedroom, the old playroom, his parents' meditation chamber, even the refresher stations, all on one floor - most of the old furniture had been removed, but there were some items that had been in the Yusanis family for generations, such as crystal and plates; the most interesting Yusanis artifacts, that being what belonged to General Yusanis, would be at the memorial they were visiting tomorrow.

And then Sev saw the Jensaarai armor that had belonged to his parents - the Echani government apparently had not understood this armor was made with Sith alchemy and the presence of the Dark Side was palpable from the moment they stepped in the room. Sev felt the tears burn in his eyes, finally, and he got the urge to run in the opposite direction. Unfortunately, they were in the next-to-last room, right before the sliding glass doors that led out to the backyard. And Dennis wanted to visit the backyard, where he and his brothers had spent so many hours playing as small children.

The minute Sev stepped foot in the yard - much less-manicured than he remembered, yet somehow not completely overrun with weeds - he fell to his knees, his body suddenly leaden.

It is a few weeks after the triplets' sixth birthday. They are playing hide-and-go-seek, as they often do; because their parents are Sith, they are not discouraged from using the Force (as they will be later on), and Sev has to look extra hard to find Dennis and Alexis, who are using the Force to conceal themselves. Sev himself is using the Force to move around in stealth mode, so when he finds them he can catch them more easily.

Sev starts with the rooms at the back of the mansion, and then he goes out to the backyard just to rule it out - it's too open out there. And before he can open the sliding glass doors, what he sees behind them makes him gasp.

His father is laying on the ground, eyes open but unseeing, blood staining his shirt from his chest and his gut, blood soaking the ground underneath him. Sev hears his mother scream, and watches as a blade of glowing red light slashes across her throat, severing her head. There are two men in black hooded robes standing by her, and one of them begins cackling.

The glass doors fly open and Sev charges at the men, pummeling one with his tiny fists, screaming. He is thrown without being touched, several feet, and then the man who was cackling raises his fist and there are sparks of blue light rising from his fingers, about to fly at Sev. Without thinking about it, Sev feels something like a bubble go up around himself, made with an energy like very thick glass, and then he rolls out of the way. The blue lightning comes at him, and Sev shoves it with his mind.

"This one is strong in the Force," says the cackling man's accomplice. "We should take him. Turn him."

"No. I told you, we kill them all."

Sev stands up, even though he is in pain from being thrown, and his legs are shaking with fear. He looks at the bodies of his parents. He unsheaths his Echani vibrosword, which even Echani children carry, and the hooded men laugh at him. They stop laughing when Sev feels rage build in him, even stronger than his fear, and he marches forward. As he does, all of the shrubs and flowers in the yard begin to die, wilting. He can feel power gathering in him like a storm. He reaches out with his hand before he can swing with his blade. The rage rises through his hand, and it knocks the accomplice down. He begins to struggle to breathe. The cackling man tries to throw him again, and can't. Sev's eyes meet his - the man is hideous, almost physically painful to look at - and the cackling man's robe starts to burn.

The cackling man takes a deep breath, and then he and his accomplice disappear. Wink out of sight, with a loud pop and a smell of ozone.

Dennis and Alexis come out of hiding because they hear Sev screaming and crying. As Sev is there with the bodies of his parents, he can see mental images of the last moments of his mother's life - they tortured her first, putting her in severe physical pain as they forced her to watch her husband's death.

Dennis calmly calls the authorities. When they come, they know the children aren't responsible but they don't believe Sev about the two men in hooded black robes with glowing swords "who just disappeared", even though they are looking at the wilted yard with some apprehension.

They are being taken into custody and asked about family members; Dennis says they have an aunt and uncle on Corellia. As the police make the holocall, Sev is wrapped in a blanket, rocking back and forth. "It's my fault," he keeps saying. "I didn't come in time. I couldn't save them. I couldn't save Mommy. It's my fault. It's my fault."

Sev broke down crying - like the tears he couldn't shed at the Eternal Flameyard finally hit him, but twice as hard. Dooku dropped to his knees beside his bondmate. He'd seen the flashback in the Force, through their Force bond, and Sev saw the tears in Dooku's dark eyes - aching for him, grieving with him.

"Sweetheart." Dooku pulled Sev close, and rocked him. He had a better understanding now of why Sev had gone into medicine - even though his parents were already dead by the time he arrived on the scene, Sev's six-year-old mind thought there was something he could do for them - and he also understood why Sev had been so reluctant to use the Force for so long, beyond the conditioning from his aunt and uncle. What Sev had experienced was something no child should have to endure.

"Mommy," Sev cried, feeling ridiculous for blubbering like this, but he had been especially close to his mother, as Alexis had been especially close to their father. He remembered his mother's kindness, her warmth. The way she sang often; the way she sang them to sleep at night.

Dooku kept rocking Sev, stroking his hair, overcome with Sev's emotions in addition to his own anger and pain for what had happened here in this place twenty-three years ago. "Little one. It's all right."

"It's never going to be all right." Those words came at a much deeper register than Sev's usual speaking voice, almost a growl. When Dooku looked into Sev's eyes, they were glowing orange. Sev's skin was paler than normal.

He could see then the next series of mental images chasing through Sev's mind - aboard the Finalizer, with Kylo Ren - Snoke's disciple, Valkorion's disciple, and Valkorion had been here, in the body of the cackling man - ordering Sev to kill his own brother. For treason, when the treachery that had been planned against them from the very beginning was worse than anything Dennis had done by "fraternizing" with Leia Organa-Solo - Dennis was working on a plan to try to help Leia and Kylo reconcile. Either of Sev's brothers would have been bad, but it was especially bad that it was Dennis - Dennis who was so much like Sev's mother, carried the warm hearth fire of her spirit.

Sev rose to his feet, and marched into the mansion. He stormed into the room where his parents' armor and swords were kept. He began pulling his father's armor off the wall. The curator of the House Yusanis museum came in when the armor was almost completely removed, and he said, "You can't take that. That's a historial arti-"

"That armor was my father's." Sev then Force threw the curator against the wall. The curator looked at Sev with terror in his eyes, and Sev clenched his fist - the curator rose up two feet off the ground, beginning to choke. "I am going to take what belongs to me by bloodright and you get the hell out of my way." Sev unclenched his fist, and the curator fell to the ground with a deep gasp of breath. After more gasps, the curator started to crawl a few paces, then got up and ran away.

The last item was the vibrosword, which had a curved hilt. Sev began to put on the armor - there wasn't much of it, and what was there was lightweight, the Jensaarai armor had been crafted in the traditional Echani style - and then he took the vibrosword and marched back out to the backyard. He stood in the place where his father died, and the group watched as Sev brought the blade to his throat. Dooku had a moment of panic, fearing that Severin would take his own life - but Sev knew how to just nick himself, a superficial cut that nonetheless bled quite a lot. After the blade tasted his blood, it began to glow green. Dooku gasped - it was like the Regent sword glowing red in his hands.

Sev fell on one knee and drove the sword into the ground. He spoke the ancient Sith Assassin's Creed:

I do not aim with my hand; he who aims with his hand has forgotten the face of his father. I aim with my eye.

I do not strike with my hand; he who strikes with his hand has forgotten the face of his father. I strike with my mind.

I do not kill with my sword; he who kills with his sword has forgotten the face of his father. I kill with my heart.

Han Solo stepped forward then - Sev's Sith apprentice. They too had a Force bond, albeit less than Sev's with Dooku, and Han had been feeling not just Sev's own grief, but that of Malak, who he had a heart-bond with as lovers. Han reached out his hand to Sev, but instead of pulling Sev up, he too got down on his knee, and Han repeated the same words.

A chill ran down Malak's spine, breaking out his arms and neck into gooseflesh. Atton Rand - Han's prior incarnation - had been trained by Malak himself as a Sith assassin, building on the Echani martial arts training he had received from General Yusanis. It was all coming back around, now. Malak saw it very well. They weren't just here to try to convince the Echani to join the Separatists. They were here to begin empowering themselves as a ka-tet.

Dennis had his mother's sword, and after a moment he handed it to Ben, and nodded. Ben walked towards Han and Sev, and Ben handed Han the Echani vibrosword of Ryanna Savros. Han cut himself with the sword in the same manner Sev had done, and the sword glowed orange. He then also drove it into the ground, in the place where Ryanna's head had fallen.

Sev stood up. His eyes were still blazing with that orange-gold fire. "I don't care what Valkorion is. He came here to try and kill us. It no longer matters what he is. He will die. The First Order will die."

Dooku felt himself getting hard, a reaction that seemed inappropriate in the intensity of Severin's pain... but oh, how he loved when Severin let this part of himself show. The part of himself that Dooku had seen when he took Sev under his wing as his apprentice, what seemed like ages ago even though it was just a matter of months; a part that Severin had been reluctant to admit was even there, and had done his best to try to hide. Here it was now, the embodiment of War. It was intoxicating to the old Count.

Sev sheathed his sword, and so did Han, and then Sev's eyes returned to their normal green.

"Let's get the fuck out of here," Sev said.

_

When they got back to the hotel room, Sev took off his armor and placed his newly acquired vibrosword on a chair, then wordlessly went straight to the 'fresher and threw up from nerves. He then had an asthma attack - Dooku could hear him struggling for breath, and just before he could Force-open the door, he heard the telltale puff of Sev's inhaler, and then the gasps subsided.

Sev sat on the cold marble tile of the 'fresher floor for a few minutes, trying to calm down. He was still shaking, his head a spinning mess, replaying his parents' murder over and over again, juxtaposed with Kylo Ren ordering Sev to kill Dennis, and Sev gunning down at least thirty First Order officers in his and his brother's escape from the Finalizer. Sparing Valyeris's life because she was pregnant.

Sev finally took off his clothes and took a shower, as hot as he could stand it. He cried some more, and leaned against the tile wall, eyes closed, lost in his own private place of grief and rage. He was so lost in his tempest of memory and emotion that he didn't notice when the 'fresher door opened, only when the glass doors of the shower opened and Dooku stepped in with him, his strong, white-furred arms reaching around Sev from behind.

"Shhhhh." Dooku held Sev tight. "Little one."

They stood there like that for awhile, Dooku just holding Sev, soothing him with a combination of the Force and just being there... and finally Sev felt Dooku's hard-on against the crack of his ass, into the small of his back. Sev took Dooku's hand and kissed it, and then he sucked Dooku's fingers, making the elder man groan.

Sev turned around, and met his bondmate's eyes. Dooku shoved him against the wall with a deep, hungry kiss, and Sev ran his fingers through Dooku's chest hair, down his perfect abs, to lightly brush the head of Dooku's cock, standing at attention for him. Dooku used the Force to grab the body wash sitting on the ledge of the shower, and began lathering Sev in slow, lazy circles, making Sev moan beneath his touch. Dooku kissed him again and again, and then began to kiss Sev's sensitive neck, up to the ear to the even more sensitive point, and back down, kissing the shoulder before giving it a little nibble.

Sev took Dooku's face in his hands and kissed him as hard as he could. Sev's own cock was hard now, Sev's cock rubbing against Dooku's cock. They sighed with pleasure, and moaned into another kiss. Sev lathered Dooku, giving him the same deliberate slow, teasing touch, worshiping Dooku's body with his hands and the heat in his gaze. As they rinsed together, the feel of the water raining down on them was like thousands of little kisses, continuing to tease their awakened flesh. Their mouths were hungrier now, tongues playing together in the promise of what was to come.

After Dooku turned off the water and used the Force to open the glass doors of the shower, he threw his trembling bondmate over his shoulder and marched out to the bed. He picked up Sev and put him down on the bed, and Sev lay on his back, watching Dooku as he went around the other side and climbed on. He leaned over Sev and cupped Sev's chin in his hand, tenderly running a finger along the edge of his beard, before his mouth met Sev's once more.

When they pulled apart, breathless, Sev whispered, "I need you, Daddy."

Sev watched as Dooku used the Force to open a black duffel bag that they'd packed with a few toys, and out came the length of black rope that Dooku had used more than a few times. Dooku used the Force to raise Sev's arms and then once the rope was in his hands, he tied Sev's wrists to the bed, pulling the rope through the slats on the dark mahogany headboard. Once Sev was restrained, Dooku used the Force to secure the knots and had Sev try to move his arms, testing them. Sev could only adjust his elbows if his arms got tired, but otherwise was quite tightly bound. Dooku pet Sev's face and husked, "I'm going to take care of you, little one."

With that, he kissed Sev again, and then spent close to an hour just worshiping his bondmate, kissing, licking, and caressing every inch of Sev's body, from his neck down to his shoulders and arms - even Sev's armpits - lingering on the nipples, the washboard stomach and little button of Sev's navel, hips and thighs and calves and ankles and toes, back up to kiss around Sev's cock, maddeningly, until Sev was writhing against the restraints, whimpering, trembling. "Please, Daddy..."

Dooku smiled and kissed back up Sev's torso, spending even longer working on his nipples, making Sev scream with pleasure and frustration. "Daddy..." Sev hooked a leg around Dooku, trying to convey how badly he wanted, needed, ached to be fucked. "Daddy, please." The word was almost a sob.

Dooku just continued licking Sev's nipple, even more slowly. Sev loved it - not just the sensation of Dooku's lips and tongue on his exquisitely sensitive, swollen nubs, but the feeling of surrender, being completely under his Master's control. He needed to be fucked, but he needed this just as much - needed his need, needed to be so consumed with lust and passion that it was all there was.

Dooku kissed Sev's mouth again, and finally paid Sev's cock some attention, taking it into his fist and stroking it slowly. "I told you I'm going to take care of you, my own." Dooku nibbled Sev's neck. "I'm going to give you as much pleasure as you can stand."

Dooku kissed his way back down Sev's body, until his lips met his fingers, encircling Sev's girth. Sev cried out as he felt Dooku's mouth on his cock, saw the heat in Dooku's dark eyes as he watched Sev's responses, looked at Sev like he was the only thing that existed in the universe. Sev arched to him, gently rolling his hips, crying out with every slow lash of Dooku's tongue, the slow yet firm sucking that brought him right to that edge and then left him hanging there, dangling at the edge of climax, building his tension until Sev felt like he would explode, not just fall into ecstasy.

And then, to further his domination over the younger man, Dooku took Sev's cock out of his mouth, gave it a few playful licks, and then lowered his head to tongue-bathe Sev's balls. Sev shrieked, writhing again, hearing himself make inhuman noises as Dooku licked and sucked, Sev's balls tightening, engorging, desperate for release. "Fuckkkk..." Sev's nails raked over the slats of the headboard. "Daddy..."

Dooku kissed Sev's inner thigh, and Sev howled. Dooku licked up the seam of Sev's crotch on one side, then around the bush, to the other side, before giving Sev's balls a second round of tongue, making Sev gasp and whimper, shaking with need. And then Dooku's tongue was at the sensitive place where Sev's balls and ass met, kissing it, tongue rubbing furiously, before he dipped his tongue into Sev's channel, finding the prostate right away and licking slowly. So, so slowly. "Daddy Daddy DaddyDaddyDaddy oh fuck, fuck, fuckkkkk, FUCK!" Sev felt tears in his eyes - need so intense it almost hurt, pleasure so intense it almost hurt... love so intense that it did hurt, was breaking him apart. He could feel how much Dooku loved him, wanted to ease his pain, comfort him the best way he knew how. This wasn't just an act of lust for him, though it was that - he was expressing his love with every stroke of his tongue, like an artist painting with a brush, trying to express the ineffable.

When Dooku started working his tongue like a hurricane, the storm of passion sent Sev over the edge, screaming as he climaxed. Dooku kept licking Sev through his orgasm, and then he looked at Sev's cock, leaking with thick ropes of cum. He lapped it up and Sev felt his cock stirring again; Dooku swallowed it down, working his fingers on Sev's prostate, and it wasn't long before Sev came again, in Dooku's mouth, with the older man groaning as Sev cried out. The look of bliss on Dooku's face as he savored the taste of Sev's cum made Sev shudder, contracting even harder.

Dooku came up to kiss Sev, and Sev moaned as he tasted himself on his lover's mouth. He moaned again as Dooku's hard cock rubbed insistently against his thigh. "Do you want this?" Dooku rasped, in between kisses along Sev's ear.

"Yes, please..." Sev was surprised he wasn't completely spent from coming twice already, but Dooku's full-body teasing had paid off; Sev was more worked up than he'd been in quite some time, and that said a lot.

Sev groaned as he felt lube poured into his ass, and groaned again as he watched Dooku pour lube onto his cock and stroke himself, coating it. "Please, fuck me," Sev moaned.

Dooku knelt between Sev's legs and pushed just the tip into him, then back out, rubbing it between Sev's balls and ass. Sev screamed and whined, his nails raking the headboard again. "Daddy, please."

Dooku gave Sev an indulgent smile and continued teasing him with just the tip, until Sev gripped the headboard, white-knuckled, his legs on Dooku's shoulders. "Dammit, Idis, fuck me NOW."

Dooku made an exaggerated sigh, which made them both laugh, and then he pushed in all the way, slowly, but still making Sev gasp at the shock of being stretched and filled - as many times as he'd taken Dooku's cock by now, it was still a tight fit. When Dooku was all the way inside his bondmate, he closed his eyes and shivered, pausing a moment to enjoy the feel of Severin wrapped around him, welcoming him home. When he opened his eyes, he said, "I love you."

"I love you," Sev breathed.

Dooku leaned in to kiss Sev and began to roll his hips slowly. One hand grasped Sev's cock, and the other played over Sev's body, exploring, adoring. Sev murmured contentedly as Dooku worked his slow magic on Sev's prostate, his curved cock rubbing at just the right angle and rhythm, building Sev's arousal to fever pitch. After they kissed awhile, Dooku stroked Sev's cheek, and then his fingers trailed down to the O-ring on Sev's collar, his index finger hooking through the ring.

"You're mine," Dooku said. "And when I told you it's all right... I am going to make things right. I can't bring your parents back from the dead. But I can help you avenge them. I can help you punish the men who killed them."

Sev kissed him hard - he loved feeling that fire in his usually calm, collected bondmate. When Dooku finally let his mask drop and showed the predator within, Sev found it exhilarating. Erotic.

"Punish my ass first," Sev husked. "Fuck me hard, Daddy."

Dooku growled, and nipped Sev's neck. Then he let Sev have what he asked for - showing no mercy, holding nothing back, his cock hammering into Sev harder and harder.

"Yesyesyesyesyes, oh fuck, ohhhh shiiiiiit..." Sev bucked his hips, fucking back at Dooku's cock, giving as good as he got. "Fuck me fuck me fuckmefuckme oh, Idis, Tyranus, Daddy, take me..."

Dooku kissed him again, and then kissed and nibbled down Sev's neck, before pulling the ring of Sev's collar with his teeth. Sev cried out. If he hadn't been tied up, his nails would leave bloody ribbons down Dooku's back, and Dooku almost missed that, but Sev needed to be under his control... under his power, yielding his trust. His trust in Dooku's promise to him... his trust that their love would conquer all.

"Fuck..." Sev shuddered, just on the brink of orgasm. "Get it get it getitgetitgetit, oh, fuck, you're splitting me..."

"And you love it."

"Fuck, yes." Sev's eyes met Dooku's. "I love you."

One last kiss, with all the fire of their passion lashing in their tongues, and within a few more strokes of Dooku's hand on Sev's cock, a few more thrusts inside him, Sev spurted up Dooku's stomach, screaming into the kiss. Dooku gave three more powerful, slow thrusts, and then he was over the edge too, spending deep into his bondmate, making Sev sigh with contentment as he felt Dooku coming inside him.

Dooku used the Force to untie Sev, and Sev stretched his arms, then wrapped them around Dooku, his legs wrapped around Dooku's waist, holding the old Sith Lord with all of him. They shared a soft, sweet kiss, and then rolled onto their sides, so Dooku could pull Sev into his chest and pet his curls. He kissed the top of Sev's head, arms tightening around him.

They lay there for awhile, in each other's arms, and at last Sev found his words again. "Thank you," he whispered.

"Thank you." Dooku kissed Sev's forehead.

Sev nuzzled Dooku's chest hair, and then he kissed Dooku's neck. "You down for one more?"

Dooku laughed. He could feel himself stirring again as Sev's lips and tongue knew just where to lavish attention on his sensitive neck. "I suppose I am."

"Good." Sev shoved Dooku on his back. Dooku was still inside him, and Sev could feel him hardening again, fully erect once Sev began to ride him, slowly.

This was Dooku's favorite position - he loved watching Sev ride him, not just because it gave him a wonderful view of his cock moving in and out of Sev's channel, but it gave him an equally wonderful view of Sev's body. He loved his lithe, lean-muscled combat medic, who looked like a classical statue carved of ivory. Sev was in his full glory riding him - taking and being taken, conquering and being conquered, confidence in his sexuality and masculinity shining through with every roll of his hips. He loved the look of pure sensual enjoyment on Sev's face as he rode, loved the way Sev looked at him, caressed him, made him feel like a sex god worthy of being ridden by a young, beautiful warrior.

"I can't get enough of your cock." Sev gave Dooku a sultry look. "I can't get enough of you. Feeling you. Giving myself to you."

Dooku's response was to reach up and play with Sev's collar again. Sev worked his hips just a little harder.

"We were made for each other," Dooku told him. "Long before this lifetime, you were mine. You've always been mine."

Sev's nails raked down Dooku's chest - just a little sting, enough to raise welts, but not enough to break skin, not just yet. Dooku groaned as he felt Sev's nails in him, and he reached his free hand around to slap Sev's ass, hard.

"You've known an entire lifetime of pain. But that is changing. We are fighting back, together. Because nobody gets to hurt you but me." Dooku slapped Sev's ass again.

"Daddy..." Sev was riding harder now, not able to help himself.

The hand on Sev's collar caressed down his chest, over one hip and thigh, and then grabbed Sev's cock. Dooku matched Sev's rhythm with his hips, thrusting into Sev harder, and then set the pace faster, making Sev moan against the sound of Dooku's balls slapping against his ass. "You're mine," Dooku growled.

"Yes..."

"Mine."

"Yesyesyes... fuck, yes..." And then Sev rode Dooku as hard as he could, and when Dooku matched his pace, fucking even harder than he had the last round, Sev screamed, trembling. Dooku groaned, stroking Sev's cock harder.

"Yes, my own." Dooku's other hand came away from Sev's ass, to play over him, touch, tease, everywhere he knew Sev liked it. "I spent an entire lifetime without you. Feeling like half of my soul was missing, and not knowing what was wrong. Now I know. Nothing will ever take you from me again. The men who killed your parents - Valkorion and the other - they won't just be punished for what they did to your family, but that they came to kill you. We are going to destroy them. Together."

"Oh, fuck, yes... yes, Tyranus, yes, Daddy..." Sev gripped Dooku's hips, nails digging in.

Dooku moaned. He couldn't make words anymore, too lost in sensation and emotion. He loved this man, and he was going to make Severin come harder than he'd ever come in his life.

A few moments later, Dooku's will was done - Sev bounced on Dooku's cock until the rubbing on his prostate was too much and sent him into a screaming orgasm, fingers and toes curling with how intense it was. The contractions around his cock triggered Dooku's own climax, crying out Severin's name as the pleasure overtook him. Sev groaned with gratification, loving the way his name sounded when Dooku shouted it at that moment of truth. As Sev collapsed on top of his beloved, they kissed deep, Dooku's arms holding Severin as Sev had held him last time, their legs braiding together, souls entwined.

"Love you so much." Sev kissed along Dooku's whiskers before claiming his mouth again.

Dooku lovingly rubbed Sev's back and shoulders - touch that would get Sev revved up again if he weren't so spent, but now just felt deliciously cozy. Sev snuggled into him, and drifted off, stirring a little when Dooku remembered to set the alarm for tomorrow morning. "Hmm?" Sev murmured.

"Sleep, little one." Dooku kissed Sev softly. Soon he was asleep as well.

Chapter Text

Jocasta was milking goats when Irina found her.

Since arriving on Serenno, Jocasta had made a friend in Dooku's younger sister, and the two of them usually met once a day for tea or to go shopping, but Irina always made an appointment. Here, she was coming over unannounced, and Jocasta could tell just from the look on Irina's face that something was wrong.

Jocasta used the Force to pull out a stool for Irina, who gingerly sat down. "What's the matter?" Jocasta asked her. "You and Mace didn't have a quarrel, did you?"

Irina shook her head. "No. Things are still... quite well... there." Irina lowered her head and sighed. She frowned. "I miss Idis." Then she looked up at Jocasta, tears in her eyes. "And I'm worried about him."

Jocasta tried to not smile a little. She would have never thought to hearing someone worry about a Sith Lord. But Dooku wasn't like most Sith, and it was normal for family to fret over each other. Jocasta would have pat Irina's shoulder, but her hands had just been on goat teats, and she didn't think Irina would appreciate that. "You know Dooku's a big boy and he's more than capable of taking care of himself," Jocasta assured her. "I'd worry more for anyone who runs afoul of your brother."

"Yes, I logically understand you're right. But I worry just the same. He just got here, and he's off again... and war is coming to our doorstep, whether we want it to or not. I had truly hoped to put that all behind me when I was resurrected."

Jocasta saw it in the Force - Irina's reaction to her husband Aran's death during the Clone Wars, and then Vader and Sidious executing Irina's family in the Cleansing of Serenno when the Republic became an Empire. Irina was worried something even worse would happen this time around.

Jocasta took a deep breath. "Before what happened on Arcturus, when Dooku started talking about getting the Separatists back together, I thought it was a bad idea. After what happened on Arcturus? It's our only hope for survival. The Republic is ineffective against the First Order, and the First Order isn't just going to leave us alone and let us live in peace out here on Serenno. We can either bring the fight to them or have it brought to us, and Dooku is right that our odds are better if we bring the fight to them. I know Dooku himself would just rather retire and let other people worry about saving the Galaxy for a change. But other people handling it created the situation we're all in now. We have no option of looking the other way and ignoring this. I know you wish we could. It's completely understandable, after what happened to you and your family."

Irina nodded.

"But we can't." Jocasta stood up; the milk pail was full. She gestured for Irina to follow her from the barn to the villa. "The best we can do is create moments of peace. Little pockets of normalcy where we can forget, temporarily, that we're at war. A space where those fighting can be reminded that they're fighting for their lives... for what those lives are about."

Jocasta put on tea as she started boiling the fresh goat milk. She produced a plate of scones, and Irina nibbled one.

"I still can't help worrying about him. He's my brother." Irina looked close to tears. "And I miss him."

Jocasta washed her hands, and then she hugged her friend. "I know you miss him. Sifo misses him too." Without thinking about it, she instinctively stroked Irina's short, silvering dark hair. "I suppose I miss him, since he's been like a brother to me most of my life... I just have too much Jedi conditioning still to let it weigh me down. I try to keep focused in the moment and find peace in the Force. It brought us this far, I don't think it's for nothing."

"...That actually helps." Irina smirked. "I suppose the Jedi weren't entirely bad."

"Oh, the Jedi Order had quite a few flaws." Jocasta sat down and spread jam on a scone. "But they also had a few good points... teachings that your brother took with him even into his Sith training. He's just as much a Jedi as he is a Sith, even if he doesn't see it that way. The entire reason he went to the Dark Side, in my opinion, is because of what an exemplary Jedi he was - he cared too much, he thought the Republic cared too little, and he told me himself that he'd went the way of the Sith hoping to reform the Sith from within. Make them rather like a Dark variety of Jedi." Then Jocasta's lips quirked, like she found that idea amusing.

Irina raised her eyebrows.

"As a librarian, I've had the opportunity to examine a few texts the Jedi deemed 'inappropriate' or, even, 'forbidden'. The position of archivist and librarian was not given to just anyone at the Jedi Order, but one who showed themselves to be firmly on the Light Side of the Force even beyond most Jedi, because of the access to these texts and what they could do to someone who struggled with the Dark. After Qui-Gon was killed by Darth Maul, I took it upon myself to read about the Sith. There was a prophecy of one called the Sith'ari, who would destroy the Sith Order from within to change it into something else, something better. Darth Bane was thought to be the Sith'ari, and Darth Plagueis and Darth Sidious also claimed the title... but I don't think it applies to them."

"You think my brother is the Sith'ari."

Jocasta nodded. "Oh, I'm certain of it. The prophecy was

The Sith'ari will be free of limits.
The Sith'ari will lead the Sith and destroy them.
The Sith'ari will raise the Sith from death and make them stronger than before.[1]

There's a bit more to it than that, but he fits all of the criteria, right down to, in light of the disappearance of the Sith Order, he's the most experienced of the remaining Sith, which defaults to leader. And he did try to remake the Sith into something better; he influenced a former student of his to found the Jensaarai - an offshoot of the Sith where they were much more like Jedi, right down to calling themselves Knights. Dooku had to command the Separatist forces, so he let his student handle the formation of the Jensaarai, but it was based on his teachings. They used the Dark Side of the Force to help protect and rescue innocent civilians and punish those preying on them. The Empire hated them and launched a purge. Severin's parents were Jensaarai - his mother was one of the sect's leaders - and they were killed for it. Sifo finds the Jensaarai fascinating; as there's been talk of building a Je'daii Temple here on Serenno, Sifo thinks there should be a subset for the elite, the Jensaarai as a special ops group."

Irina frowned.

"...Oh dear. I hope that wasn't too much Force talk for you." Jocasta went to the stove to attend the boiling water for tea. "I sometimes forget that you're not -"

Irina shook her head. "It wasn't that." Her frown deepened; Jocasta observed how much Irina looked like a female version of her brother. "You mentioned Plagueis and Sidious. Dooku had told me of this creature named Valkorion, who's been after killing the lot of you for at least four thousand years, and did a Sith alchemy procedure so he can change host bodies - and he'd been hosted by Plagueis and Sidious. He's now being hosted by Supreme Leader Snoke."

Jocasta nodded.

"...Dooku had also told me that Kylo Ren idolizes his grandfather Vader, had said 'I will finish what he started'. Well... he may not have simply meant bringing back Vader's Empire. Vader killed my brother. And Kylo Ren works for Valkorion, who feels the Sith'ari title belongs to him. But if Tyranus is the Sith'ari instead... this conflict goes far deeper than simply restoring the Empire. This is a veritable cosmic struggle."

Jocasta's eyebrows went up, but she simply poured boiling water over the tea leaves. "Indeed." She brought the teapot back to the table and they waited for the tea to be ready; Jocasta worked on her scone. "You're very observant." Jocasta smirked. "Runs in the family."

"Well, sometimes we can be blind to observations about ourselves. I wonder if Idis knows what he is."

"He knows he's one of the Seven Light," Jocasta said. "As far as knowing he's the Sith'ari... he's never said so, and I know he knows the Sith lore."

"I think we're going to have to hold an intervention for him. I know he made me acting Regent of Serenno in his absence, but I'm thinking I should accompany you and Sifo when you go to Mandalore. We'd be gone just a couple of days, Mace can take care of things that long." Jocasta and Irina prepared their tea, and then Irina went on. "This is also my first time going back to Mandalore since I was... taken from there." She scowled.

"So you'd be going for closure purposes."

"And I'd feel better doing so with the rest of my family there." Irina put her hand on Jocasta's wrist. "And my friends."

Jocasta took Irina's hand, and squeezed it. When she let go, their fingers lingered for a moment before Jocasta pulled her hand away to take her teacup.

"Sometimes I wish we could all be normal." Irina looked sad. "But we wouldn't be us, if we were."

"Normal is overrated. I can't imagine what it would be like to live without the Force."

"Even just the little bit that I have, if it disappeared, would be like losing a limb, I imagine." Irina closed her eyes. "I just wish having the Force didn't ensure a lifetime of such... complexity and difficulty. Such struggle."

"Life is hard even when you're not Force-sensitive," Jocasta said. "It does sometimes feel like that is amplified for those of us with the Force, however. We seem to have a habit of getting ourselves killed."

"That's exactly it. I've already lost so much."

Jocasta got up, walked over to Irina, and gave her a hug. Irina accepted it, hugging Jocasta back. Jocasta's arms tightened around her, and Irina leaned in to Jocasta. "You have. We all have," Jocasta said. "But the Force also gave back much of what was taken away. Not all of it, but much of it. And the Force has given us new things, as well. New partners. New friends."

Irina gave Jocasta a squeeze. "Thank you. I needed that perspective."

"Sometimes, we all need someone else to help us see things a different way. That's what friends are for." Jocasta cupped Irina's chin in her hand, and then, playfully, she reached her thumb and index finger around the corners of Irina's mouth, forcing her frown upward into a smile. Irina bitchfaced through the forced smile, and then she laughed, and so did Jocasta, who kissed her cheek. Irina blushed - she felt a strange flutter in her stomach, a little frisson of excitement - and then Jocasta went back to her chair and Irina sipped her tea.

"It's all going to be all right. Especially if your brother has his way. Force help anyone who stands in it." Jocasta shook her head with a snort.

_

Because the Echani were a matriarchal culture, Ari, the resident psychologist, had suggested that Leia handle the bulk of the presentation. Not only were the Echani more likely to listen to a woman, especially one who held the rank of a military General, but Leia had been the founder of the New Republic, its first Chancellor, and then served for a time as Senator. Leia speaking openly of the New Republic's flaws - including the mistake they made of a peace treaty with the First Order after the First Order destroyed the Hosnian system where the Republic was headquartered - would be taken more seriously than a complaint made from someone outside the Republic. She also was the mother of Kylo Ren, and her warning the Echani what he was capable of would be taken more seriously than from someone else.

But what seemed most plausible in theory, turned out to be not necessarily working in practice, as Leia spoke to the Echani Prime Minister and her Assembly. They were already wary of the Separatists because of the Clone Wars - they were willing to hear CIS out, but there was no small amount of ire directed at Dooku not simply for the damage the Clone Wars had done, but they saw him as responsible for the Empire, under which the Echani had suffered greatly. The Thyrsians, age-old enemies of the Echani who lived on the moons of Eshan, had been employed in Palpatine's personal guard, and Emperor Palpatine took a rather perverse delight in having the Thyrsians occupy Eshan and have their way with the Echani. Even as Dooku explained that what Vader and Palpatine had done with the Empire ran directly counter to what he had intended for the Empire to be, the Echani Assembly scoffed and sneered at him, and one of the male Assembly members said, "We should kill you right now."

Leia got between the Echani and Dooku, and she said, "If you want to try, you can go through me first."

Dooku was surprised - he was perfectly capable of defending himself - but he also understood why Leia was challenging the man.

Leia squared her shoulders, straightened her blouse, and then she cleared her throat. "I, as leader of the Rebel Alliance, would have special reason to hate Dooku and blame him for everything that you're blaming him for - Vader was my father, and the Empire made him my enemy. But all that Dooku has told you, is true. I would not be working with him - the Resistance would not have decided to go the way of the Separatists - if it were not. Dooku of all people understands how evil the Empire is, because it cost him his life. And here he is, standing before you now. If there's anyone who can stop the return of the Empire, it's Dooku, because he knows its ins and outs better than any of you. The Force knows this, and it's why he's back. What mistakes he made, what blood is on his hands from days past - this is how he's paying his debt. He told the Resistance what I'm telling you now - he's worth more to you alive than dead. His death won't accomplish anything. Let him live, let him lead you into battle against the First Order, and your people will avenge what the Empire did to you... your people will be stronger than ever before."

"My partner is half-Echani," Dooku said, gesturing for Severin to step forward. "He is of House Yusanis, youngest son of Alek Yusanis and his Alameenian wife, Ryanna Savros. They were Jensaarai executed by Sith assassins. But they were not simply executed because they were Jensaarai. Alek's nephew Teodor Yusanis, one of your own Senators, was also murdered, as was his mother, Raskta. All of this was a way for Valkorion - hosted by Palpatine, among others - to insult the Echani, by destroying the last of a House that had risen to prominence during the Mandalorian Wars, a House famed for its warriors in a culture where all are warriors. The act of murder was rife with symbolism. Palpatine hated the Echani because he was a filthy coward who had to employ other Sith to do most of his dirty work for him, or when he could be arsed to do things himself it would always be done sneaking around, when nobody was looking... and the Echani are brave, bold, and proud - a reminder of everything he could not be. When I fell in love with Severin, I began to study his homeworld's culture, and I found much that I appreciate and admire in Severin is very characteristic of the Echani people as a whole. My partner and I are to be wed in a matter of weeks. I would help his people right the wrong that was done to them, as a wedding gift."

The Echani Prime Minister, Calenas Iritu, considered this quietly, and after a few moments of silence, she spoke. "You speak pretty words, Count Dooku. But the fact of the matter remains - Kylo Ren is just a boy. The peace treaty between the Republic and the First Order was signed. Ren is free to play in his sandbox, and he stopped throwing his tantrums."

Leia snorted. "A third of the Outer Rim is now under control of the First Order. The systems under their control? Largely did not fly the First Order flag willingly. They were conquered. One of the oldest and most valid criticisms of the Republic is that it is too hands-off with the Outer Rim. That 'sandbox' of the First Order isn't just the Unknown Regions anymore. It's spreading across the Outer Rim, and the Republic turns a blind eye. Well guess what. The Mid Rim borders the Outer Rim. Eshan may not consider itself at risk now, but what will happen when the First Order is three systems away? By then, it'll be too late to do anything about it, if nothing has been done. And that's what the Republic is doing - a lot of nothing. With Eshan currently being a Republic world, playing by Republic rules, you can't do what you need to protect your territory and that of your neighbors from the First Order. And because Kylo Ren wants to do everything his grandfather did, but more extra... if you think the Thyrsians gave you hell under the first Empire, I'd be surprised if a tenth of your population survived under the second."

"You underestimate us," Iritu spat.

"No. I don't underestimate you. It's my son that you're underestimating. Yes, he's just a boy - thirty-three years old he is now, and has only had military experience since his mid-twenties, he's not a seasoned General like you and I. He's a boy... a very unstable boy. Playing with toys... very dangerous toys, much more advanced than the kind my father played with. Toys that destroy systems."

"Toys that you don't have," Dooku said. "It happens that we had a few First Order members defect, one of whom is an astrophysicist who helped design several First Order projects. He's currently working on similar projects, or upgrades of those projects, for the Separatists."

"There's something else to consider," Leia said. "When the First Order has enough numbers, they may not even try to conquer the Mid Rim next - they may just go straight for Coruscant. They can do even more damage once they've taken Coruscant. By joining us you wouldn't just be protecting your homeworld, the Eshan system would be a barrier. We intend on recruiting as much of the Mid Rim as we can, to form a barrier that will stand in the way between the First Order and Corsucant, not let them near Coruscant without one hell of a fight. You would be setting an example for your neighbors to join our fight."

Iritu pursed her lips. "Now we must talk about what happened when Dooku lost the Clone Wars. What happened to Mustafar. Geonosis. Serenno. Every single world that had been a part of the Confederacy, was punished by Palpatine and Vader. If it wasn't outright genocide, they still killed a lot of people and made the living suffer. If we join your cause and we lose, there will be a Cleansing of Eshan. Quite possibly, Eshan will be no more."

"If the First Order wins, Eshan is going to be no more whether you have joined the Separatists or not," Dooku replied. "Once again, Kylo Ren intends on recreating his grandfather's Empire. What happened to you under the first Empire is but a taste of what you will experience under the second. Yes, you might die anyway if you join our cause, but at least you'll go out with a battle cry and not a whimper."

"We do not whimper," snarled the Echani man who had challenged Dooku.

Dooku gave him a small, predatory smile. Severin's cheeks burned when Dooku's eyes met his.

Calenas Iritu rapped on the desk. "Meeting is adjourned."

After the Assembly members cleared the room, Iritu got up from her desk and approached Dooku and Leia. "Thank you for your time," she told them.

"Thank you for yours." Dooku politely bowed his head.

Iritu put her hands on her hips. "We're taking a vote later, but I've got to be honest with you, it doesn't look good."

"Why did you even agree to a meeting with us?" Leia asked, looking very obviously annoyed.

"Because when the Separatist charter goes live on the Holonet, my people are going to ask questions. This meeting facilitated questions they would have."

"I find it hard to believe that for all of the renowned military prowess of the Echani, you cannot see the threat the First Order poses," Dooku scoffed.

"There is a difference between credible threats and jumping at every shadow that passes by. After the Empire fell, there were quite a few groups that wanted to restart the Empire. This is of course why the New Republic did not take General Organa's warning more seriously. Even after the destruction of the Hosnian system, they thought it was better to make peace than war. A true warrior knows to pick their battles."

"And if you're wrong?" Dooku raised an eyebrow.

"What if you're wrong? And how many people will die needlessly for that, like they did in the Clone Wars?"

There was a deep grunt of disapproval, but not from Dooku or Leia. The three turned and saw Severin, shaking his head. "I can't believe you," Sev said to the Echani Prime Minister. "My drunk, crazy aunt Nyro was right about one thing - the Echani really fell quite far from their former glory. Just a bunch of wimps resting on their laurels thinking they're badass because of shit they did four thousand years ago."

"Yes, off-worlder," Iritu replied. "Spoken like a halfling bitter that they will never truly be one of us."

"You're not just wimps, you're racist wimps." Sev took Dooku's hand. "Let's get the fuck out of here."

_

Over lunch, Sev was livid - enough that Dooku encouraged him to have a little more wine than usual, to calm down. "I can't fucking believe these people," Sev said. "Why are we even bothering with this?"

Dooku sighed. "Because the other government leaders in the D'Astan Sector - people who can help fund the war effort, and create a blockade to further ensure Serenno's safety - are insisting that we recruit at least three member states from the Mid Rim to lend CIS legitimacy, and I thought because of the fact that Supreme Commander Malak is half-Echani, and the Echani have a reputation as warriors, that we had more going for us with the Echani than with some random world we have no connection to and no history with." Dooku frowned into his wine. "Clearly, I was wrong."

"They'd rather punish you for the Clone Wars than see logic," Leia said. "They're not doing themselves any favors."

"No. But it's not doing us any favors, either." Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose.

"We should just go," Sev said. "If we need three member states, and it's pretty apparent Eshan isn't going to be one of them, then we're wasting our time here - we should go to Kashyyyk, and figure out a spot between Kashyyyk and Mandalore where we can try to convince the locals to join our cause."

Dooku made a Wookiee noise. "If we leave before they even vote on it, it's considered rude. The fact is, until they vote, we don't actually know."

"The Prime Minister herself said it doesn't look good."

"If everyone on Eshan always agreed with the Prime Minister about everything, the job would not change hands as often as it does."

Leia nodded. "The only two people who said anything at that meeting indicating they feel one way or the other were the Prime Minister and that guy who said Dooku should be killed. Apart from that, we simply don't know."

"She was probably basing her opinion that the Assembly isn't in favor, on reading body language," Sev pointed out.

"And in a society where everyone can read body language in depth, some may mask their body language to not give away their true feelings." Dooku cocked his head to one side. "I seem to recall you telling me this very thing when you were General Yusanis and I was Arren Kae."

Sev raised his glass in acknowledgment.

"And speaking of..." Dooku patted Sev's hand. "You did want to see the General Yusanis Memorial while you were here. So I think we should still do that."

"OK." Sev nodded, and sipped his wine.

After the meal, that was what they did. The General Yusanis Memorial had been standing since two centuries after his death, and when they arrived at the gate of the memorial, Sev marveled that something almost four thousand years old could still be standing, in such well-maintained condition. But the Echani took the remembrance of the dead and their deeds very seriously, and Yusanis was remembered as a war hero - not simply a war hero, but had set a precedent even by Echani standards of what a General should be.

The memorial was staffed by a curator who lived on the grounds; she was not of relation to House Yusanis, but was keenly interested in Echani history. A portion of the memorial was the home that General Yusanis had lived in with his first wife and five daughters, and in the backyard, years after his death, a statue of him had been erected. The group visited the home first, to look at Yusanis's personal effects and hear his biography.

Sev had wondered how the Echani would treat Yusanis's relationship with Arren Kae, considering that Yusanis had been in an arranged marriage with his cousin that produced five daughters, and the revelation that Yusanis and the Jedi Knight had been secretly married for ten years and had a daughter Brianna was enough of a scandal that instead of taking Arren Kae to Eshan when she was exiled from the Jedi Order, she and Yusanis instead went to join Revan's fight against the Mandalorians. Sev and Dooku were both relieved to not hear any condemnation of Arren Kae from the memorial curator recounting Yusanis's life - she was in fact presented as the great love of his life, a fierce warrior in her own right, who as such had captured his heart. Sev squeezed Dooku's hand, and then they both gasped a little when they saw the rings Yusanis and Arren Kae wore, preserved under glass. Before the battle of Malachor V, Arren Kae had taken her ring off to give to Yusanis, as a promise that they would be reunited when the battle was won; the battle was the last time they ever saw each other, with Kae presumed dead - Dooku remembered Kae being stranded on the surface, falling completely to the Dark Side in her torment. So seeing these rings kept carefully nearly four thousand years later, and that they were here, now, looking at them, made Sev and Dooku both tear up.

Sev found his emotions continuing to escalate at the holophotos of Yusanis with his daughters, who he loved very much, especially the youngest, Brianna. Brianna had been left her mother's white Jedi robes and her father's vibrostaff, and upon her death, these items were sent back to Eshan, and Sev looked upon them now, feeling ready to break down and cry.

"Brianna also was supposed to receive her father's ritual brand," the curator went on, "but the Jedi Master Atris did not want any of the Handmaidens using the Force, and Yusanis had modified his Firedancer brand with a Force crystal. Atris sold the ritual brand on the black market, and the fallen Jedi Revan found the brand some years later on Tatooine. He bought the brand and used it himself, which is why holophotos of Revan show him wielding both a red lightsaber and a purple one - the purple blade is Yusanis's brand."

I remember that, Ben told Sev in the Force. I bought it to honor you. I remember when you adopted me.

Sev reached out to pat Ben's back, feeling touched by this, even closer to tears.

"So with that in mind, it is time to show you the shrine to Yusanis," the curator said. She gestured to the group, as she led them out the glass doors at the back of the house, leading to the large yard.

The statue of Yusanis stood about ten feet high, and depicted him in his last years of life, an older but strong man, dressed in his Republic military uniform, proudly wielding a vibrostaff in one hand, and in the other hand he bore a torch that was always kept burning, much like the grave-shrines at the Eternal Flameyard. Surrounding Yusanis's statue was a pool in which Echani lotuses grew, white and pink. A small waterfall flowed into the pool - Dooku noted that there was a waterfall in Sev's Force signature, so this bit of not-coincidence made them exchange glances.

Sev made his way to the front of the line, wanting to see the back of the statue, which the curator had said was "of interest". But before he could make it there, he was stopped in his tracks by the sound of glass breaking, and in an instant, a gauntlet strapped itself around Sev's right wrist, and a handle flew into Sev's left hand. The moment Sev's hand wrapped around it, there was a hiss and a familiar hum - a purple blade came out of each end of the handle, burning much hotter and brighter than a traditional lightsaber.

"Holy shit," Sev said.

The curator dropped her tablet. When she composed herself a moment later, she approached Severin. "I don't know how you got those, but they don't belong to you," she said. She reached for the vibrosword on her belt and unsheathed it. "Unhand them at once."

"Uh..."

The curator took a swing at Sev, and without Sev even thinking about it, there was a feeling like a pop from the gauntlet around his wrist, and a faint white light made a box around him. With every swing the curator took, the box followed her blade, until Sev reached through the box of light with the not-lightsaber glowing in his hand, and cut the blade off her sword. They both looked down at the grass where it fell, and then Sev looked back up at the curator.

"Apparently, these items think they belong to me," Sev said.

The curator pinched the bridge of her nose. "Who are you?"

"Severin Yusanis. One of the descendants of General Ren-Yan Yusanis." A pause. "...The reincarnation of Ren-Yan Yusanis."

"Oh. My." The curator let out a string of Echani epithets which Sev only half-understood and he knew quite a bit of Echani swearing. The curator reached in her belt again, this time to produce a holophone. She pressed a button, and after a few rings, the group saw the hologram of the Prime Minister. "Can you come down to the memorial? There's a bit of a situation here."

_

Calenas Iritu was none too thrilled to see the group again before they were scheduled to return to the Assembly Hall tomorrow morning for the verdict of the CIS vote, and she was accompanied by three priestesses who looked even less happy to be there. Sev was taken into the study and the priestesses took turns doing a minor Force interrogation, probing his memories of his lifetime as Yusanis. They studied the gauntlet - Yusanis's personal energy shield, which was supposed to have been spent and no longer effective, yet it worked just fine on Sev's wrist - as well as Yusanis's brand. After the priestesses and Prime Minister met privately for approximately twenty minutes, they came out into the foyer, where the group was waiting.

Iritu cleared her throat. "The priestesses say you're the reincarnation of General Yusanis."

Sev nodded.

Iritu and the curator looked at each other, and Iritu gestured for the curator to speak. "This memorial was built not simply to honor the life and death of one of our greatest war heroes, but after he died, a superstition went around that Yusanis had been the living avatar of our war god."

Sev tried not to cringe. He glanced in Han's direction, and Han's eyeroll made him want to smile.

"With that superstition came a belief that he would return the next time the Echani were to face a great war." The curator cocked her head to one side.

Iritu turned to Dooku and Leia. "I will be voting in your favor. I cannot promise what the others will vote, but I will make sure their decision is an informed one."

"Thank you," Dooku told her. Leia nodded.

"No, thank you." Iritu looked down at the floor, and then she turned to Sev. "You are absolutely right - our people have grown soft. We fought in the Clone Wars, but the Empire browbeat us enough that when the Empire fell, we were collectively just content to go about our own lives. We could have protested the injustices of the Republic when we saw them, maybe even taken up arms against them, but we didn't have the numbers to stand against them ourselves. We were tired of fighting. So the Echani have done nothing of note for decades. And that runs against all of our history. All of our ancestors. If I have my way, we will fight with you. I don't know if we will win. It may be our last fight. But we owe it to the dead who fought for the future of our people, for our lives, to go out fighting rather than hiding and cowering."

"Something I learned at age six when my parents were killed," Sev said. "Safety is an illusion. Peace is an illusion. You may have it for brief stretches of time. But there will always be predators looking for prey. I too was afraid to fight back for most of my life. Then I stopped having a choice, and it was kill or be killed. The fact of the matter is, the entire Galaxy stopped having a choice once the First Order destroyed the Hosnian system. You can either fight them or be conquered by them. Once the First Order is gone, the Republic needs to be dealt with, because they let this mess happen. There is no option of ignoring any of this and hoping it will go away and you'll be left alone. Join the Commonwealth, and we will make sure you put up a damn good fight, with the best weapons and ships money can provide."

Iritu nodded.

"So before we go back to our hotel," Sev spoke up, "there is the matter of my brand and energy shield... and I'd like the rings."

"We can give you the brand and the energy shield," the curator said, "but the rings are a historical arti-"

Sev sighed. "You could have replicas made, no?" Sev looked at Dooku, and Dooku nodded. "My husband-to-be can well afford to fund replicas. They're kept under shielded glass as it is, nobody will know the difference."

The curator looked at Iritu, and the Prime Minister nodded. The curator looked like she could use a few drinks, but she quietly led Sev into the room where the rings were kept. Dooku followed. Before the rest of the group could follow, Iritu stopped them. "Just them," Iritu said, gesturing to Sev and Dooku.

Sev and Dooku watched quietly as the curator plugged in three codes to unlock the shield around the glass display case, and once it was up, Sev used the Force to lift up the glass case. The curator reached inside for the pillow the rings were kept on, and carried the pillow over to Sev and Dooku, who took the rings. The smaller ring that had fit Arren Kae now fit Sev's ring finger, and the larger ring that had fit Yusanis did in fact fit Dooku's ring finger. Yusanis had worn them on a chain at the Battle of Malachor V, and Dooku put the rings back on the chain.

"We'll be exchanging them at our wedding," Dooku told Sev.

Sev threw his arms around Dooku and they kissed. The kiss got deeper and hungrier until the curator loudly cleared her throat, and then Sev and Dooku pulled away, quietly amused, and accompanied the curator out.

"Is there anything else?" the curator asked them.

Sev shook his head.

"We'll be on our way now," Dooku said. He turned to Iritu. "We will see you tomorrow morning to hear the results of the vote and discuss those results."

Iritu nodded, and then she bowed to Severin. The priestesses and curator also bowed to Sev on his way out. The smile Sev had been wearing since Dooku took the rings was now a frown, and Dooku could feel his bondmate on edge, but Sev said nothing all the way back to the hotel.

_

After Sev and Dooku made it to their suite, Dooku began changing out of his regular clothing. Sev normally ogled Dooku when he got undressed, so Dooku knew something was very, very wrong. When Dooku was stripped down to his briefs, semi-hard in the presence of his bondmate, he stood before Sev, who was staring at the floor. Dooku took Sev's chin in his hand and made Sev look up and meet his eyes.

"What's wrong?" Dooku asked him.

Sev sighed.

Dooku waited.

After a minute, Sev found his words. "They... bowed to me, Idis."

"Oh." Dooku found himself relieved this was what Sev was upset about, and not anything to do with him, and yet he also felt his own sense of apprehension, having a feeling that Sev was about to have another emotional catharsis just as intense as the one yesterday, if not moreso. Dooku braced himself, and sat down on the bed next to Sev.

"They fucking bowed to me. This whole... shit... with... them seeing General Yusanis as an avatar of their war god and, by extension, seeing me as an avatar. I mean yes, I suppose it's a good thing that swayed the Prime Minister in our favor - I'm still not thrilled about us throwing in our lot with someone who called me halfling, but maybe SURPRISE AVATAR will make her rethink her racism a bit. But all that being said... I'm just this guy, Idis. I don't want to be worshiped."

Dooku waited. He knew Sev wasn't done ranting.

Sev got up and began to pace. "And it's not just this. This is bad, but you'd mentioned yesterday at the botanical gardens that this war god is likely the Echani interpretation of who I am in the Seven Light. And that. That right there. This has been bothering me from the beginning. I did not sign up to be some god in some hokey-ass religion."

Dooku took a deep breath. "And yet, in the Seven Light, we are twins. Soulmates. Two halves of a greater whole. You would deny this?"

"No, I wouldn't deny what we are to each other."

"Also, it needs to be stated again - the Jedi and Sith are both religions. I was a Jedi for sixty-three, close to sixty-four, years of my life. I have been Sith for seventeen years. You would sit here and tell me to my face that I ascribe to a 'hokey religion'."

Sev stopped pacing, and folded his arms. "Could you not make this about you for five minutes?"

Dooku bitchfaced. "Actually, I bloody well could not not make this about me, because in your dismissal of the Seven Light, you are dismissing our connection to each other, as old as time itself. In your dismissal of any and all religions, you are taking a piss all over something that was sacred to me for most of my life."

Sev looked off to the side.

"Look. Severin. I understand that when you think of religion, you think of fanatics. You think of highly advanced alien species who preyed on less advanced species by claiming to be gods and demanded material goods and fed on psychic energy. Undoubtedly, you as the living embodiment of War would have a problem with the needless, senseless wars carried on in the name of 'gods' and their fanatical followers, determined to combat what they saw as intolerable heresy. Undoubtedly, you as the living embodiment of War see the endless battle between Jedi and Sith as the most egregious case of religion gone wrong, when you and I know the truth - that the Dark and Light not only can and should co-exist, but they need each other... just as you and I need each other, as two opposites."

Sev sighed.

"I am not asking you to retract your opinion about religion-in-general. But when it comes to religions based on the Force... please do tread a little more lightly."

"Well, this is the thing, Idis." Sev put his hands on his hips. "I'm a doctor. I am a man of science. The Force is spooky shit and it makes me uncomfortable, even now, but at least I can acknowledge that the Force is science. What determines Force sensitivity, for example, is midichlorians in the blood. Force sensitivity runs in families because there are genetic quirks that can make someone tastier to midichlorians, just like I'm tasty to mosquitoes in the summertime."

"You're quite tasty in other ways." Dooku smiled.

Sev snickered, and then he got serious again. "Things like reincarnation? A little more nebulous. But as a doctor who's studied the brain - not as in depth as a neurologist or neurosurgeon, but enough to do my job - I know that consciousness does not exist in a vacuum. Consciousness can be transferred between bodies. Valkorion does it more immediately by changing hosts, while you and I have done it over the span of millennia. So... as much as the concept of reincarnation still produces a knee-jerk reaction in me, I at least understand that there's a scientific basis for that, too. But this whole business with highly advanced Force beings deciding to project some of themselves into meat bodies so they can influence people, places, and things and change the course of history... it bothers me. It bothers me a lot. And it bothers me most of all when people think this is a cause to put me on a pedestal and worship me. I am not about that life."

"It would unsettle me as well," Dooku said. "We may be 'highly advanced Force beings wearing meat bodies', as you put it, but on Serenno, we have a concept that to those whom much is given, much is expected. To be of noble birth is to be a servant of the people. I see it as much the same way with being one of the Seven Light. In the time of the Je'daii, we were called forth in ritual and temporarily possessed Je'daii Masters, but it was never about self-aggrandizement. Instead of demanding worship and offerings, we were there to serve, to offer guidance, teach and empower those who called us. We are not here in these bodies now for fame and glory, much as it may follow us as a consequence of succeeding in our objectives. We are here to fight alongside the ones the Force is with, to give them aid."

"This brings me to the other point I'm uncomfortable with about all of this," Sev replied. "So I'm... the Prophet of Fire. Aka Design, who becomes Destruction when the Force is out of balance. I'm the living embodiment of War. You know how many people hate me just for existing? There's a popular song that goes 'War! What is it good for? Absolutely nothing.'"

"And yet still, you exist. The Force clearly understands there is a place for you. I am the personification of Justice - the fulfillment of Destiny. What is injustice but things that should not be, things that keep people from being who and what they are, finding their way in this universe? When there is massive injustice, especially systematic oppressions, the only thing that can correct it is revolution. Tearing down the old to build the new. I quite literally cannot do my job without you. Likewise, Destruction must be tempered by Justice to not be senseless slaughter. Destruction must be guided by Purpose, Destiny."

"And that's great. Except you know what? I don't even know what it is the fuck that I'm supposed to do. I'm War. OK - what does that mean, exactly? And this - this, right here, is the heart of the matter. This is everything I fucking hate about religion. You get thrown into the deep end of the pool and you're expected to sink or swim based on very scant knowledge. Even people who have been studying religious texts their entire lives still can't fully grasp the totality of 'cosmic mysteries.'" Sev made air quotes. "I'm War, you're Justice... so what now? I missed the memo on how this all works. Do the Seven Light get color-coordinated outfits? Sailor suits? Do I get to say something like 'War Crisis Power, Make-Up!' and transform into a magical boy with pretty wings who throws my Brat tiara at bad people to make them explode? I'm not really sure what the deal is here. Nobody explained this to me. All I was ever told is 'you're one of the Seven Light, you're War.' The fuck do I do with that?"

When Dooku didn't answer right away, Sev raised an eyebrow and said, "You don't even know, do you?"

Dooku's silence told Sev all he needed to know. "See? Not even you know. And it's like... if I was so goddamn special, you'd think I'd just know. I wouldn't be standing here asking 'how do I Seven Light, how do I War' like a dumbass. I can buy that I'm the reincarnation of my great-father and that you and I have shared many lifetimes together as bondmates. But this 'deeper mystery' shit? How is this even a thing? I'm nobody. I'm not fucking special."

"That's where you're wrong." Dooku squared his jaw. "You're not nobody at all. I wouldn't even have given you the time of day if you were merely average. I don't want someone like everyone else. I want you. Because you, my love, are extraordinary."

"You think so... but you know as well as I do, being different ain't all it's cracked up to be." There were tears in Sev's eyes. Dooku felt it now - this was what the entire conversation had been leading up to. "I've been different my whole life. I've been given shit about being different my whole life. And that was well before any of this Seven Light shit, well before people started fucking bowing to me like I'm some fucking god. Being 'special' is the path of loneliness. The path of shame. I've already spent an entire lifetime dealing with people being shitty to me and now, with me being War? Destruction? Something nobody likes? Nobody wants? I worry I might even push you away from me, because Force knows you've had enough strife and things falling apart for you."

"Sweetheart." Dooku got up, walked towards Sev, and took Sev in his arms. Sev leaned on him and Dooku felt Sev shudder, the first gasp of tears. "Nothing is ever going to push me away from you. You couldn't get rid of me if you tried."

"You say that now. But what about if I figure out how to do my 'cosmic job' or whatever the fuck it is, and it's worse than the Clone Wars ever was? What if we fix the Galaxy, but at the cost of you losing everything and everyone else you care about?"

"That won't happen. We're in this together. We needed all the pieces in place. They're here." Dooku took Sev's face in his hands. "I'm here. For you. Always."

"I never asked for any of this. I never asked for my parents to be killed because of the Force. I never asked for my aunt and uncle to treat me like I was lower than shit because I'm Force sensitive. I never asked for my schoolmates to bully me because they knew something was 'wrong' with me even though I tried to hide it. I never -"

"-I never asked for my own crechemates at the Jedi Order to be envious of me at the top of the class, and mock me for being overly serious at a young age because they did not understand the burden I carried, so young, feeling the weight of the Galaxy on my shoulders, hurting for those I saw suffering, angry that the Jedi had the power to do more to help and didn't, because they were puppets of the Republic and catered to Republic interests. I never asked to be torn apart inside every night, reciting the names of the dead I couldn't save, the cities and planets crying out for aid." There were tears in Dooku's eyes now, also. "And we both asked, in our heart of hearts, to be less alone... and eventually, we found each other. We are very different in many ways. But at our core, our souls sing a song that only the other can hear. Our broken places fit together." Dooku's hands slid down Sev's torso, making him shiver, and then he took Severin's hands in his. "You are not merely special, my own, you are sacred to me. Forget religion. The Seven Light is not religion. It is us hearing that song in each other's souls, and dancing together."

Through his tears, Sev finally noticed that Dooku was stripped down to his briefs, and his eyes raked down the length of Dooku's body. He bit his lower lip. "Shit," Sev said.

Dooku smirked. "You just now noticed."

"Just now." Sev looked up at Dooku, and then he let go of one of Dooku's hands, and reached for Dooku's basket. "Make love to me."

Dooku crushed Sev's mouth to his, and walked the younger man towards the bed, undressing him along the way. Dooku had to restrain himself to not rip Sev's clothes off, but by the time Sev was just in his undergarments - a pair of black lace panties - Dooku's hands were trembling, his cock fully erect, his breath shaking as his hands roamed over Severin's exposed, creamy flesh. Dooku pushed Sev down onto the bed, on his back, kissing him all the way, and the panties he did tear off, with a most satisfying ripping sound. Sev grinned up at Dooku, and then he in turn ripped off Dooku's black briefs. They groaned as their mouths met, and their hard, aching cocks kissed too, slowly rubbing together.

"My love." Dooku stroked Sev's face, and smiled before kissing him again.

Sev wrapped his arms around Dooku, and after holding him for a moment, his hands moved down Dooku's back, to cup his firm, tight ass. "I want you inside me," Sev husked. "Please. I need to feel you. Let me feel you."

Dooku claimed Sev's mouth again, and as they kissed some more, Dooku used the Force to retrieve their lubricant. He poured some into Sev's ass, and then his fingers worked their magic, readying Sev until he was clawing at Dooku's back, rolling his hips and fucking Dooku's fingers inside him, whimpering into kiss after kiss, pleading with fire in his green eyes. Dooku finally relented, poured lube onto his own cock, and after stroking himself to apply the coat, he began to push into Sev's channel, until he was all the way inside Sev's slick heat. They both groaned, and Dooku took Sev's hands, their palms touching, fingers linked. Dooku looked into Sev's eyes, and Sev sighed with contentment.

"We are one." Dooku began to thrust slowly, sensually, making Sev moan at the slow, teasing friction. Dooku kissed Sev. "Nothing will take you from me again." He took Sev's chin in his hand. "Least of all your own self-doubt."

"I'm sorry I still struggle so much with it."

"So am I." Dooku kissed Sev more softly. "It's a damn shame that someone as bright and gifted as you has hidden so much of yourself under its shadow." Dooku kissed Sev again. "But it is a natural outgrowth of what was done to you. Our enemies wanted you to suffer most of all. If War implodes on himself, they have nothing to fear." Dooku kissed Sev again, and again. "You are still my apprentice. Still learning. And you will learn to own and accept what you are." Dooku brought one of Sev's hands to his lips, and kissed Sev's fingers. "What we are to each other."

"I need you." There were tears in Sev's eyes again. "I'm afraid of how much I love you. How much I need you."

Dooku's own eyes burned with tears, feeling like he was stabbed by Sev's surge of tender emotions. He kissed Sev as hard as he could kiss, taking Sev's breath away, and pressed Sev's hand against his heart, his other hand moving down to grasp Sev's cock, stroking it slowly in time with his thrusts.

They lost all track of time, lost in each other. All that mattered was this connection, the sweet pleasure of Sev's channel gripping Dooku's cock, and the curve of Dooku's cock slowly rubbing Sev's prostate at just the right angle, the feeling of fullness intensifying the friction. Every kiss, every caress, every thrust, every time their eyes met, it was like a painter taking another stroke of his brush, capturing the ephemeral, the ineffable. Their act of love was exquisitely sensual, achingly tender, savoring and celebrating the unique fit of their bodies together... their hearts together, their lives entwined. Sev could feel the weight of who and what they were, beneath Dooku's fingertips, grazing him like fire. They belonged. There was nothing more right than this, and nothing Sev wanted to do more than merge with his bondmate in the flesh and in the Force, both of them surrendering to one need bigger than them both.

At last Dooku could hold back no longer, and when he began to work his hips harder and faster, Sev propped his feet up on Dooku's shoulders, bucking his hips back at Dooku, giving as good as he got. "Oh, Idis, fuck me," Sev moaned, digging his nails into Dooku's back. Dooku kissed Sev hard, and then nibbled on Sev's neck, until his teeth reached the O-ring in Sev's collar and he gripped it with his teeth, pulling the collar tighter around Sev's neck. Dooku's hand worked Sev's cock into a frenzy, driving Sev wild, making Sev whimper and scream. The animal part of Dooku's brain took over, completely in heat for Severin's gorgeous, lithe body, that thick cock leaking precum over his hand, the lust in Sev's green eyes, the primal noises Severin made as Dooku pounded into him, the lewd, obscene wet slapping sound of Sev's ass being taken and fucked. He wanted Sev, and after an entire lifetime sacrificing himself, not even knowing he had a sex drive, he was more than making up for it now. He was hungry, and Sev was just as hungry for him.

"Need you," Sev rasped. "Want you. Want you so bad..."

Dooku growled into Sev's neck, licking up Sev's throat to kiss along his bearded jaw, before kissing Sev with passion. He could feel both of them on that edge, but at that point of no return, about to lose control.

I need to feel you come inside me, Sev spoke into Dooku's mind. Want you to flood me with your hot cum...

Dooku groaned, and kissed Sev again. Their eyes met, and held. Come with me, my own.

"Idis!" Sev shuddered as his orgasm ripped through him, spurting up Dooku's torso. "Oh, Idis, fuck!"

"Sev..." The feel of his bondmate contracting around him was too much. Dooku cried out, spending and spending, electrified with his release.

Sev's nails raking down his back just pushed his orgasm deeper. Dooku cried out again, trembling, burying his face into Sev's shoulder with a little sob. His orgasm almost hurt, it was so intense.

"Oh, Idis..." Sev's arms tightened around Dooku, his legs around Dooku's waist. He rocked back and forth, rocking Dooku with him, as they came down from their spiral of bliss. "Oh, honey."

They nuzzled, petting each other. When Dooku was able to make words again, he said, softly, "I love you."

"I know." Sev smiled.

Dooku pressed his forehead to Sev's, looking almost in pain, wanting so badly for Sev to feel how much he loved him, wanted to make the past feel like a distant memory. And he could feel Sev's own love for him, humbling and terrifying - a love that he still himself struggled with feeling worthy of. But he couldn't live without it. They were two of the Seven Light, larger than life, but they were also fragile, and careful with each other, and most careful of all here and now in the afterglow of their lovemaking.

"Always mine, little one." Dooku kissed Sev's forehead, and his lips slid down to kiss the tip of Sev's nose.

They held each other close, and safe.

Chapter Text

As the Resistance cruiser dropped out of hyperspace in the Kashyyyk system, Dooku woke up from his nap and breathed a small sigh of relief. The Echani had voted in the majority to secede from the New Republic and join the Commonwealth of Independent Systems, and this would be a point in their favor when they made the case for the Commonwealth to the Wookiees. Chewbacca and Yoda were going to handle most of the negotiations, this time around, and that would help too; Dooku considered this the easiest leg of their three-planet tour.

Severin whimpered as he felt the drop from hyperspace, and Dooku pulled him close. After the ship cruised at regular speed for a few minutes, and Sev's panic settled, Dooku got up to meditate, and Sev went to the observation lounge, where his brothers were looking at Kashyyyk from space. Despite Sev's dislike of space travel, he always found looking at planets interesting, and this was no exception - the wroshyr-covered surface of Kashyyyk made it look like an emerald in the black sea of stars. It was a breathtaking sight.

Or it was until the ship prepared for descent into the atmosphere of Kashyyyk. Sev hated that just as much as he hated the shifts to and from hyperspace - the change in gravity always made him feel ill. This time Dennis held Sev, and gently teased him by singing, "Awww, freak out! Le freak, Kashyyyk..."

Sev bitchfaced. Dennis cackled, and Sev gave him a playful swat.

"Thanks for the earworm." Sev rolled his eyes.

"Well, now you can think about something other than the landing."

When the group disembarked from the only spaceport on Kashyyyk, Neryt gasped - even in what the Wookiees considered "city", the spaceport and nearby strip mall were still surrounded by wroshyr trees as far as the eye could see. The sky was a beautiful light green color, with darker green clouds tinged with silver and gold. Neryt took out a holocamera and began taking pictures of the sky. "Isha is going to want to see this," she said.

It's too bad Isha couldn't come with us, Chewbacca said.

Neryt nodded. "But he joined the Resistance and he's in basic training, so he has a good reason not to be here."

"Poe is personally giving him flight lessons," Leia said. "He couldn't learn from a better pilot except maybe Han himself."

The group was staying with Chewbacca's family, which included his wife Mallatobuck. Their adult son, Lumpwaroo, lived in his own nearby treehouse, and Chewie was looking forward to spending some time with him. As luck - or as many of the group would say, the Force - would have it, they were in time for Life Day, which was happening tomorrow.

Because of the Life Day festivities, and because Wookiees were confrontational by nature, the group was meeting with Attichitcuk, the Wookiee Chieftain and Chewbacca's father, within an hour. It was just enough time for the group to be shown to their rooms and meet the family. Malla was very warm and welcoming. Some of the group had wondered how Malla was with Chewbacca's partnership with Yoda, but that question was answered when Yoda, riding piggyback on Chewie's shoulders, was scooped up by Malla for a deep, passionate kiss.

"Missed you, I have," Yoda told her. "Beautiful, you look."

Malla had a girlfriend, Kerridrrl, who was tall even by Wookiee standards. Kerri also kissed Yoda, and Chewie, and Chewie put an arm around each of the women.

I think we've got time before Father shows up, Chewbacca said.

"Hrmmm, like this idea, do I." Yoda beamed, and Malla carried him piggyback off to their room, while Dooku whispered, "Shoot me now."

Sev and Dooku sat on the porch of the treehouse, looking out across the jungle, and down at the forest floor, thick with ferns and lush, exotic flowers. "I almost wish Qui-Gon was here," Dooku said.

"Almost?"

Dooku cringed. "He... does things... with." He let that sentence trail off. It was bad enough he was picking up on certain things from Yoda, much as he was trying very hard to shield his end of their Force bond.

Sev nodded.

Dooku went on, "Qui-Gon has been to Kashyyyk a few times. I came here for the first time when I was fourteen, and Qui was with me, all of four years old. Qui-Gon was quite attached to me, and Yoda encouraged it, I think, because I was struggling with the Dark Side even then, so being on Qui's pedestal kept me in line. Sometimes Yoda had him come with us on low-risk missions." He smiled a little, nostalgic.

Ben came out, then. "Qui lived on Kashyyyk, when he was Jolee Bindo. I remember finding him here, in my lifetime as Revan. He'd come here to mourn the loss of his wife, Nayama. Said the trees gave him peace."

Dooku raised an eyebrow. "That's quite a lot like Obi-Wan taking to the desert to mourn Qui-Gon."

Ben sat with them for awhile, drinking in the serenity of the wroshyr forest, and then Leia came out and said, "The chieftain's here."

The group was seated in a dining space with several long wooden tables and chairs hewn from logs. Lumpy had shown up, and his youngest children brought out food - a few different kinds of meat, and vegetable platters, raw and cooked. Sev took a skewer of meat and vegetables, and began nibbling quietly as Attichitcuk sat down at the head of his table, with Dooku on one side, Leia on the other. Chewbacca was at the foot of their table, with Yoda sitting on his lap. Yoda was wearing a bathrobe and looked like he was very stoned.

Let's cut the bantha shit and get right to the chase, Attichitcuk said, helping himself to a skewer. You want us to join the Separatists.

"Yes," Dooku said.

Attichitcuk laughed. It was not a pleasant laugh.

The only reason why I agreed to an audience with you is because Chewbacca is my son, Attichitcuk said, and the only reason why I do not rip your head off your shoulders... is because Chewbacca is my son.

Father. Chewbacca gave Attichitcuk a look. At least hear him out.

What is there to hear? Attichitcuk shrugged, then snorted decisively. The menacing look he gave Dooku as he ripped off a piece of meat with his teeth gave Dooku the chills, and he didn't scare easily. The Clone Wars brought our people tremendous suffering. The Empire even moreso. I hold you responsible for both. You have done great harm to my kind. You should pray to whatever gods you believe in to thank them that I have spared your life.

Dooku sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. He gave Yoda and Chewbacca a pleading look.

"Know the full story, you do not," Yoda said. "Enemies, Dooku and I were. But talked, we have, and understand his side, I do. Mistakes, he made. But different, things would have been, if won the Clone Wars, he did."

"The Empire enacted some very racist policies that I find abhorrent," Dooku said. "The enslavement of your people was disgraceful. If you join the Commonwealth, Serenno will see to reparations."

Attichitcuk waved his hand dismissively. We don't need your charity, old man. Then the old Wookiee chieftain snorted again. If you understood a damn thing about my culture you'd know it's blood, not credits, that makes things right when we've been wronged.

Actually he understands more than you think he does. Chewbacca cocked his head to one side. Yoda adopted him as his son. That makes him my son. He is part of my honor family.

Then you are an even bigger fool than I took you for. Attichitcuk made a noise of pure disgust.

You are a fool if you do not see the bigger picture here. Chewbacca folded his arms. Do you not know who I am? There was a prophecy made that Freyyr would be reborn, as one of us. That he would return with Revan, and three who had risen from the dead. I have Revan with me, and I have Yoda, Han Solo, and Dooku. Would you disrespect the mighty Freyyr? Himself the rebirth of the great Bacca?

Attichitcuk laughed again. Son, I don't give a shit who you were. What matters is who you are now. Throwing your lot in with a spice smuggler was bad enough, but this? Attichitcuk gestured to Dooku. This is what you bring here? And you think I will just sell our people to him?

"Hate me if you want," Dooku told him. "If I were in your position, sitting where you are sitting now, having seen and endured what you have over the last two centuries through the fall of the Republic, I too would likely be angry enough to have my first reaction be dismissing the offer. But." Dooku held up an index finger. "Before you completely shrug it off, I want you to understand two things. Number one. Whether you know it or not, the First Order is a very real threat, and they are coming. They already control one third of the Outer Rim. Kylo Ren intends on becoming the next Emperor. Whatever monster you think I am, Vader was far worse than I am... and his grandson will be far worse than Vader ever was. Number two, this is happening because the New Republic allowed it to happen. Tell me the truth, how did you feel when, following the First Order's destruction of the Hosnian system, the New Republic's reaction was to sign a peace treaty with the First Order? If that had been the Kashyyyk system instead of the Hosnian system and you were travelling off-world when it happened, you would not rest until your blade met Kylo Ren's throat, and quite possibly the Chancellor's, yes?"

Attichitcuk took a moment, and then he gave a curt nod. It was a shameful response. We should be at war with them.

"The Resistance joined the Commonwealth of Independent Systems rather than continuing to support the New Republic, because they also saw the New Republic's response as unacceptable," Leia said. "And it's time for a change." Leia sat back in her chair. "As Dooku - who himself adopted me - has said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. The Galaxy has tried the Republic. They've tried Empires. It keeps spinning, like a wheel. Going nowhere."

"After we have neutralized the threat the First Order poses," Dooku said, "we intend on taking on the New Republic and setting up the Galactic Commonwealth. If the New Republic is allowed to continue the way it has been, even when the First Order is defeated, it will just be a matter of time before something else comes along, because people are fed up."

"Even fed up, I am," Yoda said. "Says a lot, that does. Loyal servant of the Republic, I was, for nine hundred years."

Dooku squared his shoulders and looked the old Wookiee chieftain in the eye. "If it were just numbers I needed, I could hire mercenaries or build my own clone army. But it goes deeper than that. The governments of the D'Astan Sector are just one portion of the Galaxy, known for independence. They wanted me to come to the Mid Rim and seek member states from worlds affiliated with the New Republic, because staunch Republic loyalists seceding sends a message... not just to the Republic itself, but to other Republic member states who might be looking at this situation the same way you are, but have not acted, because they know they would be acting alone. The Echani have already agreed to join us. We are also planning on recruiting the Mandalorians. The Wookiees, the Echani, and the Mandalorians have a reputation in the Galaxy as fierce warriors. With them leading the fight, other worlds are more likely to follow."

And then Chewbacca spoke. To throw your own logic back at you, Father - if you say my lifetime as Freyyr does not matter because it is in the past... what Dooku did before he was raised from the dead, also should not matter. Whatever he was or was not responsible for with the Separatist side of the Clone Wars... the First Order is a threat now. The First Order is destroying worlds and systems now. The First Order has its eyes on taking Coruscant. And if they do that and set up another Empire, and you just sat here out of spite, rather than joining with the Separatists to do something to stop them... you can't blame the fall of Kashyyyk and our people on Kylo Ren, or Vader, or Sidious, or Dooku. You can only blame yourself.

Attichitcuk sneered. Yes, because I should trust Dooku. How do I know we will not be putting ourselves in an equally bad position, joining these Separatists? You trust this man, after what he did, you adopted him as your son, took his dishonor upon yourself, you are a fool.

Spoken by an even bigger fool. Chewbacca snorted. Maybe you are getting soft in your old age? Afraid to go to war?

Attichitcuk stood up with a start. Chewbacca gingerly passed Yoda to Mallatobuck, and then he also stood up, with a roar.

Let's get one thing straight, Attichitcuk growled. I am not afraid. This is not about fear or bravery. This is about honor and dishonor! That man is without honor!

Dooku withdrew his lightsaber hilt; the red blade went up with a hiss and hum. "If you keep making such statements, I'm not going to have much of a choice but to defend my honor, and I would rather not have to kill you."

Attichitcuk reached for Dooku, and was promptly Force thrown back several feet, crashing into the wall. Dooku sighed, and took a mouthful of greens, looking annoyed.

"Fight over dinner, you should not," Yoda told them. "Fight at all, you should not. Life Day, tomorrow is." As Attichitcuk returned to the table, glaring at Dooku, Yoda waved his hand at the old Wookiee. "Think about the offer, you will. Consider it. An answer you will have for us, tomorrow."

Don't pull that Jedi shit on me, hairless green -

Chewbacca roared and let out a string of impossibly filthy Shyriiwook epithets, followed by Don't bring my husband into this, or it will get ugly.

"Can I say something?" Han interjected.

No, Chewbacca and Attichitcuk both said at the same time.

_

After the meal, Dooku and Severin were shown to their guest quarters. Dooku tried to meditate and quiet his mind, but his agitation increased. Finally Sev noticed it and said, "You're feeling stabby."

It took Dooku a minute, and then he said, "I suppose that would be a not inaccurate way of phrasing it."

Before Sev could reply, there was a knock on their door. "Come in," Dooku snapped.

It was Lumpwaroo, Chewbacca's son. Dooku gave him an exasperated look, and Lumpwaroo said, I hope I wasn't interrupting anything.

"No." Dooku folded his arms. "What do you want?"

I came to apologize for my grandfather, Lumpwaroo said. He may be chieftain, but it doesn't mean all of us agree with him, and quite frankly... if he doesn't go ahead with agreeing to join the Separatists, there's been some talk of... asking him to retire.

Dooku made air quotes. "'Asking' him."

Well, kinslaying is frowned upon here, Lumpwaroo said, and stubborn or not, he's still my grandfather. But if a challenger bested him in a fight, it might be cause enough for him to step down.

"Are you suggesting I fight your grandfather?"

No, not you, necessarily. Lumpwaroo gestured to the blade on his belt. There's a custom, the eve before Life Day, of going on a hunt. Father wanted me to ask you to come with us. You can meet some of the warriors in my own honor family and restate your case of why we should join the Separatists. One of them could be persuaded to challenge Grandfather and become the new chieftain.

"...Hunt?"

If you can fight, you can hunt. We're hunting grantaloupe. I'd advise you to say yes, or it just makes you look bad to the others.

"All right." Dooku gave a curt nod.

I'll see you at 1900 hours. Before Lumpwaroo left, he said over his shoulder, Bring the Supreme Commander of your military. The others will be more likely to side with you if he's also out there with us.

Once Lumpwaroo was gone, Dooku and Sev exchanged glances. "Do you want to tell your brother, or should I?" Dooku asked.

"Eh, let's go together."

Malak was smoking a bowl of pipeweed, and invited Sev and Dooku to join him. After a few hits, Dooku told Malak what the plans were for the evening.

Malak looked at Sev. "You're coming along as field medic."

Sev raised his eyebrows.

Malak went on. "There's all kinds of crazy, dangerous shit out there. Webweaver spiders. Anakkona. Asyyyriaks. While we're hunting, we're also being hunted."

"Lovely." Sev frowned. "You don't think it's a trap, do you?"

Dooku shook his head. "No. I did a truth scan on Lumpwaroo while he was speaking to me and there is no malice or ill intent with his offer. He does think this will make a difference with the others and quite frankly... we're not in a position to refuse. I've been to Kashyyyk before. The jungles have their danger, so having a field medic is a good idea. But the Force fights with us, so we do have an advantage over creatures seeking to make a meal of us."

"And the more Force users there are on this hunt, the better," Malak said.

"Hell, I'd like to go," Reine said, poking her head out from the 'fresher.

"But you're pregnant. So I'd rather not."

Reine bitchfaced. "I'm not that far into my pregnancy where it's unwieldy. And I've got all those pregnancy Mama Bear hormones going where if anything tried to attack me, it would be the last of them."

Malak sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose.

"Aw, come on." Reine walked over to Malak, grabbed his shoulders, and gently shook him. "Wanna go hunting."

"There are two kinds of people in this Galaxy..." Sev quipped. "Those who don't want to go traipse around in a forest full of shit trying to kill you, and those who do."

"Well," Malak said, "that adventurous spirit was one of the reasons why I fell in love with her." Malak looked up at Reine. "All right. If anything happens to you, I won't be able to forgive myself -"

"It'll be fine." Reine waved her hand dismissively.

_

Sev, Dooku, Malak, and Reine were in the middle of a group of a dozen Wookiees - seven men, five women - led by Lumpwaroo. They were following the trail of a herd of grantaloupe, deep into the jungle. Night was falling, and soon the grantaloupe would stop to rest. But right now, the grantaloupe were moving fast.

Sev heard the sound of running water, meters before they came to a stream. Lumpwaroo heard it too, and gestured to the fresh trail changing direction towards the water; it seemed the herd had stopped to take a drink, and would likely rest there. The group divided into four teams, each taking a separate path through the wroshyr trees to the stream, going single file.

After Sev took ten paces, following Dooku, he heard the sound of a Wookiee screaming, followed by other Wookiee voices crying out in pain or panic. Sev's medic instincts took in and he shoved Dooku to the side, running in front of him and the other hunters, in the direction of the sound. Dooku was close behind.

Sev stopped in his tracks when he saw a beast that looked like a rancor, but with spines on its back and giant tusks, impaling a Wookiee. One of the Wookiees charged at the beast, only to be gored by another diving out of the bushes.

"Terentatek," Dooku said.

"Ah, shit." Malak pulled out his lightsaber and activated it.

"The fuck?" Sev had no idea what he was looking at.

"They're vicious predators... but they have a special taste for the blood of Force sensitives. The presence of the Dark Side draws them." Dooku also activated his lightsaber. "We have four Sith in this group."

"Oh, great."

Dooku, Malak, and Reine ran towards the two terentatek, while Sev rushed over to the two fallen Wookiees, taking out the tricorder from his medical kit to do a scan. He was briefly distracted by the sight of four more terentateks coming out. The three other Force sensitives used the Force to throw the beasts, and then Force kinetics to leap onto the beasts and stab them with lightsabers.

But then the terentateks kept coming. They were twice as big as a grown man. Sev wanted to help, but he had lives to save - he worked on the more severely injured Wookiee first, who was dazed with pain - when Sev began to use the stitcher, he grabbed Sev's arm hard enough that Sev panicked, moreso when the Wookiee pulled on it, hard.

"You're wounded and I'm trying to help you," Sev said. "I'm a doctor." He gestured over his chest and throat, to show the Wookiee the most severe of his injuries. "You will die if I don't take care of this."

The Wookiee let go of Sev's arm, and Sev breathed a small sigh of relief. That relief did not last long, as a terentatek ran out of the bushes right in front of him, coming for him. Sev waved his arm and Force threw the beast several meters over, and watched as Reine swung on a vine and cut off the terentatek's head - just to be thrown from the terentatek by another terentatek. Reine fell to the ground hard, and Malak screamed, "No!" as he watched the terentatek charge, about to gore her with its tusks.

Reine reached up, clenched her fist, and the group watched as the terentatek was lifted three feet off the ground and let out a shrieking gasp before choking for breath, shuddering. Reine rolled out of the way when the terentatek slammed down, choked to death.

Another terentatek rushed from behind, roaring - this presumably the mate of the asphyxiated beast - and Dooku flipped, tumbling in the air to land on the terentatek, and drive his lightsaber through its back. It wasn't a killing blow, but Sev saw quickly that was Dooku's intent - as the beast howled in pain, Dooku closed his eyes and used the Force to establish a mental link. Dooku drove the terentatek to gore all of the remaining beasts in the immediate area, that Malak and the Wookiees were fending off, and then Sev watched with alarm as Dooku rode the beast into the wroshyr thicket, disappearing, and Sev heard more howling terentateks, the hiss and hum of Dooku's lightsaber. After a few minutes there was silence. As much as Sev was afraid, he kept working on the wounded Wookiee before him, finishing the wound closures. He also had bones that needed to be set, but he would have to work on the other fallen Wookiee's wounds first. When Sev turned his attention to the other wounded warrior, Dooku rode back just in time for the terentatek mount to drop - Dooku was carrying a terentatek head as a trophy.

The Wookiees rejoiced. Three Wookiees came over to Dooku, lifted him off the terentatek, and began carrying him around. Malak and Reine were also lifted up and carried, but Reine was wincing from her fall. One of the female Wookiees carrying Reine brought her over to Sev, who was now working on setting Wookiee bones. "Hey," Reine said.

"Hey. I'll be with you in just a minute, okay?"

Sev braced himself as he pulled on the dislocated Wookiee shoulder, popping it back into place. Once again, the Wookiee grabbed his arm, pulling hard enough that Sev worried about his own arm being ripped out of its socket, and after a loud roar, the Wookiee let go, cringing.

The other Wookiee had a broken leg, and between that and the blood loss they'd sustained, Sev didn't think it was a good idea for them to walk back to the treehouse village, so he explained to the group they needed to assemble makeshift stretchers for transport. After the bones were set, Sev scanned Reine. She seemed to have no major injuries, and the fetus was still registering life signs. "You're just a bit bruised up," Sev said.

We have a poultice that can help with that, one of the Wookiees informed them.

"Ah, excellent," Sev said. "I'd love to see how it works, maybe buy a sample from you."

The group carried the injured back to the treehouse village on stretchers, where they were greeted by Chewbacca, Malla, and a very aggravated-looking Attichitcuk.

Your hunt was a failure, Attichitcuk berated them.

Then he saw Dooku carrying the terentatek head, complete with long tusks. Dooku dropped it near the old Wookiee chieftain's feet, and gave him a smug look.

That was his kill, Lumpwaroo informed them. Dooku killed many terentateks.

And we have two injured of our kind. Attichitcuk sneered. If these filthy Sith had not come -

-then that would be over a dozen more terentateks roaming around out there waiting to kill us. Lumpwaroo made a growl of annoyance. The Sith drew them out. They were slaughtered. Those tusks are as valuable to us as the meat of a grantaloupe. Our guests deserve praise, not condemnation.

Chewbacca and Yoda came over to Dooku, and then Dooku made a yelp of surprise and half-protest as Chewbacca picked Dooku up off the ground and raised him above his shoulders. MY SON IS A GREAT WARRIOR! Chewbacca yelled, for the entire village to hear it.

My honor brother is a great warrior! Lumpwaroo hollered, and gave a triumphant howl.

The more severely injured Wookiee, who would have died of his wounds if not treated right away, and would now probably make a full recovery, passed Sev a flask of water. I owe you a life debt, the Wookiee told him.

"Oh, shit, no..."

Han elbowed Sev and shot him a look. Don't refuse or you're going to make a major, major fuckup with their culture.

Sev cleared his throat and looked the Wookiee in the eye. "What is your name?"

I am Nagraoao, son of Jiprirr. Whatever you ask of me, doctor, it is my duty to give to you.

Sev leaned in and spoke to the Nagraoao as softly as he could. "If your chieftain says no to joining the Separatists, challenge him to single combat, winner takes the title. We need you fighting with us, not against us."

Nagraoao nodded. Hopefully, the old man will not be such a fool as to keep saying no.

Sev snorted. "Old men can be stubborn." He smiled as Dooku flailed to be put down, Chewbacca still roaring triumphantly about his son the warrior.

_

The next day, the Wookiees' guests accompanied their hosts to the Life Day celebration in the center of the treehouse village. Every treehouse had its own small Life Day tree, but in the village square, one of the younger wroshyr trees was decorated. Both the Wookiees and their non-Wookiee guests wore Life Day robes, which looked rather like Jedi or Sith robes, but red. There was tree-drum music and dancing and drinking and tales of the mighty exploits of the ancestors, and lots of food, including and especially cookies that Sev found downright addictive.

When a couple of hours had passed, Chewbacca came forth to the tree and made an announcement.

Because they hunted with us, and proved themselves more than capable, we are recognizing Dooku, Malak, and Reine Yusanis as honorary Wookiees. We are also giving the same honor to Doctor Severin Yusanis, for saving the lives of two of our own.

The drums intensified, and many of the Wookiees hooted and howled in enthusiastic agreement.

It is custom in our culture for those being adopted into a Wookiee honor family, to be given Shyriiwook names.

Chewbacca gestured for the four to step forward. He put his hands on Reine's shoulders first. I name you Jiarra.

"That's a pretty name," Reine said. Sev agreed.

Then it was Malak's turn. I name you Clarbacca. And Sev's. I name you Wrrlahab.

Chewbacca put his hands on Dooku's shoulders. I name you Dookacca.

Han almost spit his drink, and Sev fought back a giggle. Leia and Neryt both had to bite their hands to keep from laughing out loud.

Chewbacca then presented Dooku with a knife that had been hewn from one of the tusks of the terentatek he brought back. Chewbacca had clearly done his research - it was one of the few weapons that, when wounded with the blade, a Force-sensitive could not use Force Heal on the wound. For the wars to come, Chewbacca told him, should you need it.

Chewbacca turned to his father. Have you made a decision about the Separatists?

Attichitcuk said nothing.

Chewbacca put his hands on his hips. We're waiting.

I will challenge you for the chieftaincy if you say no, Nagraoao told the old man. These folk have proved their worth to us, you would be a fool to refuse their offer.

Lumpwaroo spoke then. This isn't really about the Clone Wars and the Empire, is it, Grandfather? Lumpwaroo cocked his head to one side.

Attichitcuk looked away.

Chewbacca made a noise registering curiosity. His son went on. Grandfather is loath to admit this, but he resents the fact that you don't live on Kashyyyk anymore, and have not in years. That you only come back to visit. He knows that Dooku is your honor family. He's jealous.

Is that what it is, Father? Chewbacca folded his arms.

Attichitcuk looked down, and finally, he sighed and made a gurgle of resignation. It's true. He looked up and narrowed his eyes at Dooku. I'm still wary because of this one's history. But yes... it feels like adding insult to injury that you would rather spend your time around this man, after what he did, than with your own blood.

Father, Dooku is paying his debt. Our people understand this, or we should. His offer is paying the debt he has to us. And you know, I'd come visit more often, but attitudes like what you've demonstrated since I came back home are precisely why I don't visit more than I do. It's unfortunate, because Yoda and I would very much like to see Kashyyyk more often. And I think if you and Dooku got to know each other, you'd like him. Chewbacca snorted with amusement. You'd probably find out you have more than a few things in common.

Dooku and Attichitcuk both rolled their eyes at this.

But I stay away because this whole business with the Separatists is just the latest example of you being stubborn and downright insufferable. I don't know what happened to the man who raised me, but I miss him, and if he's still in that thick skull of yours, let him know I'd like to see him sometime. Chewbacca stepped back, and made a small, sad sigh as he went over to the buffet area.

Dooku and Attichitcuk looked at each other, and then Dooku turned away, and Attichitcuk folded his arms. Nagraoao readied his blade, and gave Attichitcuk something that looked strangely like the Makashi salute - Sev and Dooku exchanged bemused glances.

Attichitcuk did not produce his own blade, and Nagraoao sneered as he continued walking forward. What's the matter, old man?

Attichitcuk let Nagraoao take a single swing, and then he said, My answer is yes. Kashyyyk will join the Commonwealth of Independent Systems. Attichitcuk then looked at Nagraoao and said, If you want the chieftain job, it's yours. If my son will not come to me, maybe I should go with him for a time, and get caught up.

Nagraoao let out a roar of approval, and clapped the old Wookiee on the back. Sev congratulated his new friend, as did Dooku, and Nagraoao said, We will have to discuss the particulars of this arrangement tomorrow before you leave.

"We will," Dooku said. He smiled. "Welcome to the Commonwealth, Chieftain Nagraoao."

Sev looked just in time to see Attichitcuk hugging Chewbacca and Lumpwaroo, and Mallatobuck and Leia began to sing.

_

Sev had a bit to drink at the Life Day celebration - not enough to be drunk, but enough to take the edge off and feel more relaxed than he'd felt in days. Despite his earlier concerns about a jungle full of dangerous creatures, Sev wanted to get a better look at the flora that had caught his eye, especially the exotic brightly colored flowers.

Happily, Chewbacca informed them that the kilometer surrounding the treehouse village was mostly safe, as it was regularly patrolled and predators had learned to avoid the area; even the youngest Wookiees were allowed to roam freely within the protected territory. Chewbacca encouraged them to explore, and gave them the coordinates to "a surprise."

"What kind of surprise?" Sev asked.

You should bring towels.

"I always bring one with me anyway, these days," Sev said. "It's important to know where your towel is."

You're a real hoopy frood.

Being that Kashyyyk was a jungle planet, it was warm and humid year-round, and Sev found himself sweating as he and Dooku made their way through the wroshyr trees. Sev had to stop for a minute and take a puff from his inhaler, such was the climate affecting him. But before he could decide this was a bad idea and they should turn around and go back, they came across a shrub of kolvissh flowers and Sev squealed with delight at the large, five-petaled blue, pink, and purple blooms. He leaned in to smell them and was just as pleased with the scent. Dooku took a whiff and remarked they reminded him of lemons.

"The Living Force is strong here," Sev said. He got up from the rock he was sitting on and stretched, feeling his second wind. He took Dooku by the hand and they continued walking. A few minutes later, Sev heard the sound of running water. They walked in its direction, and they found what Chewbacca probably considered the surprise - a lagoon, with a waterfall running down a large cliff.

"Holy shit!" Sev grinned.

The water reflected greenish-blue between the sky and the surrounding trees and shrubs, and there were plants resembling wild roses, a vibrant orange-red that looked like they were on fire, growing on seaweed-like climbing vines up the cliff. It was a breathtaking sight, and Sev and Dooku stopped to take it in. Then Sev took out his holocamera and got several pictures, as well as some video footage.

After he'd taken the footage, Sev put the camera down and began to undress.

"What are you doing?" Dooku asked him.

"Baking a cake?" Sev snarked. He rolled his eyes. "What does it look like I'm doing, Idis?"

Dooku watched Sev - and especially Sev's ass - as Sev made his way to the lagoon. He gauged its depth with a stick, and then he jumped in and swam around. There was a stone ledge to stand on beneath the waterfall, and after taking a lap around the lagoon, Sev climbed onto the ledge and stood under the waterfall.

It took Dooku's breath away - not just the sight of his beautiful bondmate, but remembering the dreams he had about Severin starting when he was fourteen... the first one right here on Kashyyyk.[1] Dreaming about Sev standing under a waterfall, much like this one, right down to the burning roses. Sev had been singing in his dreams, and he sang now:

Long afloat on shipless oceans
I did all my best to smile
'Til your singing eyes and fingers
Drew me loving to your isle
And you sang, "Sail to me, sail to me
Let me enfold you
Here I am, here I am
Waiting to hold you"[2]

Sev turned around to face Dooku and their eyes met... that too from the dream, the intense green of Sev's eyes. Sev gestured to him, beckoning him forth, just like he did in the dream.

Dooku felt tears burning his eyes, a stabbing feeling in his chest, a frisson down his spine... a good ache. Quickly, he undressed, and plunged into the lagoon. He swam to Sev.

When Dooku joined Sev on the stone ledge underneath the waterfall, Sev said, simply, "Idis." And then they kissed.

Sev was still lubed and open from sex that morning, and made no protest when Dooku shoved him against the smooth stone wall of the cliff, picked him up, propped Sev's legs around his waist, and plunged into him. "Yes, yes, yesssss," Sev cried out. He grabbed onto Dooku's shoulders, bucking his hips, matching Dooku's rhythm, fast and furious out the gate. Dooku was so overcome by emotion - and lust for the sight of his bondmate dripping wet from head to toe - that he had to have him now, had to fuck now. They kissed again, hard, and Sev's nails dug into Dooku's shoulders, making Dooku growl as he leaned in to nip Sev's throat.

They kissed again and again, drinking each other's cries, fucking harder and harder. As badly as they both needed to come, they held back their release as long as they could, Dooku pounding into Sev without mercy, holding nothing back, Sev loving every minute of it - they needed to mate, needed to fuck, needed to feel, caught up in each other's passion, hunger, the ache that only the other could truly fulfill.

"Fuck, you're splitting me," Sev moaned. "So good..."

But as good as it was, there was only so long that they could hold out. When they were both trembling, Dooku's knees buckling as he felt his orgasm edge closer, Dooku stroked Sev's cock with just the Force, his hands still holding Sev up as he hammered away. Sev screamed, loving the invisible touch, loving even more the lust he could feel behind it. Dooku kissed him one last time, and their eyes met. Dooku's dark eyes narrowed, and the heat in his gaze made Sev shiver.

Come with me, love. Dooku let Sev feel how close he was, let Sev feel the gripping around his cock, the just-right friction, the urgency...

...Sev screamed into the kiss as he spouted over Dooku's torso, and Dooku groaned as the rush overtook him and he spent deep inside Sev's channel, shuddering with wave after wave of pleasure so intense it almost hurt. Through their Force bond, two orgasms became one intense, all-consuming spiral of ecstasy. Sev wrapped his legs tighter around Dooku's waist, wrapped his arms around Dooku's neck, and Dooku pulled him away from the cliff face and into his arms. They sank down into the lagoon together, holding each other as they treaded water around the pool, which was a beautiful way to come down, feeling like the most natural thing in the world, the deeply relaxing water even moreso in the bliss of the afterglow. Sev leaned on Dooku's shoulder, and Dooku sighed, stroking Sev's damp curls.

They made a few laps around the lagoon and at the first streaks of gold in the sky, they came out, ready to go back to the treehouse village. But one look at Dooku's naked body got Sev fired up again, and Dooku let out a "Yesss" as Sev pushed him onto his back in the thick grass, straddled him, and rode his cock. It was much more slow and languid than their fuck under the waterfall... much more sensual, with their hands roaming over each other's bodies, Sev leaning in so they could kiss, their lips and tongues exploring each other's necks and shoulders and ears, Dooku leaning up to kiss Sev's nipples as Sev clutched his head, moaning louder and louder with every lash of his bondmate's tongue. They watched the sky as the sunset blazed gold, orange, green, red, indigo, and violet, almost as magnificent as the sunsets on Serenno. The play of the light added to the sensuality of their lovemaking, a beautiful moment in time that they would always cherish.

"I love you," Sev husked between kisses.

"I love you, my own." Dooku kissed Sev, and his hands slid down Sev's back - making Sev tremble as they brushed his spine - to cup Sev's ass. He pushed into Sev's channel fully, and they both cried out. One of Sev's hands played over Dooku's chest hair, and the other stroked a furry thigh; Sev bit his lower lip with a sultry gaze as he felt the older man shiver, heard his moan.

When the sky had faded to a deep green-blue tinged with shades of red, and the first star was out, they finally reached the finish, Dooku's hips working as hard as they had in the waterfall, Sev grabbing Dooku for dear life as he rode as hard as he could. The slap of their flesh and their wild howls and cries echoed through the forest, loudest of all when they came together, screaming each other's names, shouting wordlessly but triumphantly as Sev spurted over Dooku's neck and chest, and Dooku filled him with his seed once more, feeling like he was falling, sinking deep into the earth, but instead of darkness there was brilliant light.

Dooku came back to himself a few minutes later. Sev was laying in his arms, listening to his heartbeat. Dooku pet Sev's curls and kissed the top of his head.

"Fuck, we're good together." Sev smiled, and nibbled playfully on Dooku's shoulder, before snuggling into his chest again.

"Good would be the understatement of the eon." Dooku stretched, and shuddered as an aftershock hit him. "Fuck."

Sev laughed - Dooku didn't swear often, or at least not by his standards of "often", so when he did, it was especially amusing to him. Dooku smiled, loving that tinkling laugh of Sev's, so much like the wood sprites of Serennian legend.

"Are we ready to go back now?" Sev asked.

Dooku nodded.

Sev got up, and then helped Dooku up, even though Dooku didn't need the help - it was an excuse to take his hand, to continue the intimate touch somehow. Once they were both standing, they embraced for a moment, naked in the twilight, and then they used the Force to retrieve their clothes from the grass and put them on as quickly as they could. They used their lightsabers to light their way back through the darkening forest, and before they stepped inside the treehouse of Chewbacca's family, Sev and Dooku took a moment to look at the sky, now a sea of stars without any light pollution. It was awe-inspiring. They took each other's hands once more, lost in the wonder of the Galaxy surrounding them.

Sev turned to Dooku finally and said, "I may be an atheist and scoff at religion... but this is sacred to me. You are sacred to me." He kissed Dooku softly.

"Oh, sweetheart." Dooku nuzzled Sev. He could feel his cock stirring again, even though they had already made love twice a short while ago, and once that morning. Sev made him feel young and horny, especially in moments like this where Sev let his secret depths show.

Sev smiled knowingly and reached for Dooku's basket. "Come inside, and I'll show you my Tree of Life."

Dooku chuckled. "Such blasphemy."

"Blasphe-me, blasphe-you, blasphe-everyone-in-the-room..."

And Dooku loved Sev's audacity, as well. He continued laughing as Sev led him inside, and stopped laughing when Sev's mouth claimed his. Between the sheets of the bed in their guest room, they made Life Day fireworks all night long.

Chapter Text

As the Resistance vessel cleared Mandalorian space, Sev prepared himself for another landing. But even more than his anxiety about the shift in gravity and the sensations that came with it, Sev was nervous about being surrounded by Mandalorians for a few days. Neryt, who had spent the first twelve years of her life on Mandalore, tried to assure Sev it would be OK - whatever hostilities there were between the Echani and the Mandalorians, the Mandalorians still practiced hospitality and they would be guests of Clan Fett.

Even so, Sev had concerns. "We had a hard enough time making the case for the Commonwealth to the Echani and the Wookiees," Sev said. "Jango Fett may laugh in our faces, considering the Separatists lost the Clone Wars - why would the Mandos throw their lot in with the losing team?"

"Because I don't intend on losing a second time." Dooku steepled his hands. "And we have some valuable allies this time around - such as the Wookiees. In particular, the new Wookiee chieftain being in life debt to you can be... advantageous."

"Yeah." Sev pinched the bridge of his nose and made a Wookiee noise. "I am really, really, really uncomfortable with that whole life debt business. I'm a doctor. I took a fucking oath to save lives. Nagraoao saying he owes me his life - and whatever I see fit to do with his life - for doing something that I took an oath to do, well, it doesn't sit well with me."

"And yet, that is their culture." Dooku cocked his head to one side. "Something you will need to learn and understand now - while the Commonwealth intends on ensuring a basic standard of living for all its citizens, such as clean air and water, environmental protection and restoration as needed, free health care, free education... we are still obliged to not turn the Galaxy into one homogenous monoculture. It is one thing if a culture's customs are backwards and barbaric, such as promoting gender inequality or nonconsensual bodily mutilation, but there is a line with what we can dictate to other cultures before we become oppressors. The Wookiees fought very hard to preserve their cultural identity in the face of the Empire. I know you don't like the concept of the life debt, but you have to tolerate it, or we get on the slippery slope of cultural imperialism."

Sev nodded. "Gotcha."

The announcement came over the ship's intercom to prepare for landing. Dooku pulled Sev close and stroked his curls, which comforted him as much as it did Severin - Dooku felt apprehension for a much different reason. Dealing with the Mandalorians brought back memories of Galidraan... and now, past-life memories of the Battle of Malachor V as well.

And that's exactly why we have to do this. We have to cleanse and close these old wounds, once and for all. Dooku closed his eyes, breathed in Sev's scent. I am revisiting the past, for the sake of my future.

It still hurt.

_

The Resistance vessel landed on Concordia, the Mandalorian moon where Clan Fett resided. Since his resurrection, Jango Fett had been proclaimed the Mand'alor, the leader - he was eligible to live in Sundari, the capital on the main planet, but preferred the open forests to the domed city.

Years of war had left much of the surface of Mandalore uninhabitable; the domed cities preserved what was left of Mandalorian flora and fauna. Just before the Clone Wars, Satine Kryze and her faction, the New Mandalorians, had exiled Mandalore's warriors to Concordia, and declared that the Mandalorians were now a pacifist people. When the Empire took over, these pacifists were now enslaved. The Mandalorians were still rebuilding decades after the fall of the Empire. The return of Jango Fett from the dead was seen as fulfilling a prophecy that Mandalore the Preserver would be reborn at a time when the Mandalorians were "broken and defeated" and would be led into the glory of war once more.

At the spaceport, the group was met by Jango himself, as well as Sifo-Dyas, Jocasta, and Irina, who had borrowed Dooku's solar sailer. Dooku was surprised to see Irina, since he had left her acting Regent in his absence, but he found he was not unhappy to see her, either.

"I had to come," Irina said. She took her brother's hand. "I haven't been here since... the end. I need some closure."

Dooku nodded.

They were taken by speeder bus to the estate of Clan Fett - a large farm on many acres of land, fields of crops surrounded by a thick, lush forest. Sev smiled at the herd of bantha, peacefully chewing grass. Their part of Serenno was in late fall, but this part of Concordia was in the middle of summer, everything green and vibrant.

Once they arrived at the farm, the rest of Clan Fett had come out to formally welcome them. They danced a haka, which was traditional Mando'a custom - this made Owen and Lysa happy, who tried to imitate the dance halfway through.

They were taken out back to a series of tables set outdoors, where Mandalorian food was being served. "Go easy on the wine," Irina told the group.

"But don't go easy on the ne'tra gal." Jango grinned.

"Oh, you." Irina elbowed Jango, who had been her brother-in-law when her husband Aran was alive. Jango laughed.

Sev started with the soup - gi dumpling soup, with the dumplings made of fish; there was also red gourd soup. Sev liked the red gourd soup quite a bit. When Sev worked on the main course - roast shatual meat and the very spicy meat-and-vegetable casserole known as tiingilar, which was spicy enough to clear Sev's sinuses but not too spicy for him to enjoy it, impressive to the Fetts - Jango leaned back in his chair, swirling ne'tra gal in his glass.

"So this is the part where you ask us to join the Separatists," Jango told Dooku.

Dooku nodded. "I'll be blunt. I know about the prophecy. I also know that you would not have been able to be resurrected if you weren't a little Force-sensitive... which means the Force has plans for you."

"When you were Canderous Ordo, I was Revan, and I defeated you," Ben said. "You eventually followed me, one of my most steadfast allies."

Jango said nothing, just continued drinking, and listening.

Ben went on. "Looking back on past history, I cannot say that I regret the Battle of Malachor V. I regret the Force wound it caused. I regret what it cost certain individual people." Ben looked at Dooku and Sev, who nodded acknowledgment. "But if Malak and I had not taken that extreme measure, the entire Galaxy would be speaking Mando'a right now... and every planet of the Galaxy would be like Mandalore. Devastated. Decimated. What was left, under domed cities. We did what we had to do."

Jango drank a very large swig, finishing his glass, and then poured himself another. His eyes never left Ben's.

"But that does not mean a wrong was not done to your people, just the same," Ben said. "Revan wronged you. Malak wronged you."

"There is another Revan," Malak said. "As he went back and forth between the Light Side and Dark Side, over and over again, it shattered his soul. This was used in a Sith alchemy procedure to make more than one of him. This other Revan is named Kylo Ren. He is the Commander of the First Order, which now controls one third of the Outer Rim, and let me tell you, they would love to control Mandalore and conscript you all." Malak put his glass down and steepled his hands. "Let me pay my debt to the Mandalorians for the Mass Shadow Generator, by leading you into battle to destroy the First Order."

"But it goes deeper than that." Sifo-Dyas spoke up.

All eyes were on Sifo now, and he shifted uncomfortably in his seat. He knocked back an entire shot of ne'tra gal - Dooku rolled his eyes, knowing Sifo was going to regret that later - and then Sifo cleared his throat, sat up in his chair, and said, "Tyranus recruited you, Jango, but I am the one who ordered the clone army. If you are their father... I could be considered their grandfather."

Jango's eyes widened, but he said nothing.

Sifo continued, "It is my understanding you have a law of return for the surviving clones and their descendants, yes?"

"Yes." Jango tried to keep the emotion out of his voice, but it was clear this was a sensitive subject for him.

Sifo looked at Dooku. Dooku said, "When I recruited you for the clone army prototype... it was not simply that you were a great warrior, one of the two survivors of Galidraan. It was that you were one of the two survivors of Galidraan. It seemed rather poetic justice to me, to destroy the Republic via one of the survivors of a genocide it was responsible for... blood that I never feel I can wash from my hands." Dooku took a sip of ne'tra gal, and cringed a little before he gingerly set his glass down. "I intended to use the clones to kill some of the Jedi for their crimes. I did not intend for them to kill all of the Jedi, or younglings. That went too far. That was Vader's doing."

"A few clones who were involved in that committed suicide," Jango said, "and a few more are in treatment."

Dooku nodded. "If I'd known that Order 66 was going to go above and beyond my original plan, I would have found another way. Especially if I'd known what the Empire would become."

"Hindsight is perfect vision." Jango also nodded.

"Kylo Ren is the grandson of Vader," Ben said.

Jango's eyebrows raised at this. This was not common knowledge on Mandalore, which was largely isolationist these days.

"It's true." Dooku took another sip of the ne'tra gal, unpleasant to his tastes, but it was rude to not drink it. "He idolizes his grandfather."

"And the New Republic made peace with him." Leia frowned. "It's why the Resistance joined the Separatists. There is no peace to be had with someone who wants to be the next Vader and is conquering the Galaxy one system at a time."

"In light of the legacy of the New Mandalorians," Dooku said, "and the way their policy of peace left Mandalore vulnerable to the Empire... I am sure you have some opinions on that."

Jango snorted, and gave a small smile before taking another drink.

"So, my offer is not simply for the Mandalorians to join the Commonwealth of Independent Systems," Dooku said. "It is to help right the wrongs that were done to your people, including and especially by Sidious and Vader, and the legacy they have left that the First Order follows. We will not simply lead your people into war against the First Order, and the New Republic, but as we are waiting for the regime change in the Galaxy, Commonwealth members receive priority trade status with other Commonwealth members, which will boost Mandalore's economy... and we have enough financial resources in the D'Astan Sector that we can terraform Mandalore. People won't have to live in domed cities any longer."

Jango put his glass down. He took a few bites of food, and then he said, "A few weeks ago, Kylo Ren asked if I would willingly, voluntarily join the First Order."

Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose. A feeling of dread rose in the pit of his stomach.

"I told him to go fuck himself." Jango and a few of the other Fetts began laughing uproariously at this. Dooku gave a small sigh of relief.

"He has the capability to destroy the Mandalorian system," Leia warned him, "just like the Hosnian system was destroyed. As we speak, the Separatist Army is building satellite defense systems and fleets with advanced weaponry. This can be yours, if you -"

Jango waved his hand. "The answer is yes." Jango folded his arms. "The answer was yes before you got here - the First Order looked too much like the Empire for my comfort, which is why I told that kid to piss off. But now that I know for a fact he's Vader's grandson... well..." He raised his glass. "To prophecy. And war."

"To the Mandalorian spirit," Irina said, "and the fallen."

"Oya manda." Jango looked at Neryt, then. "Speaking of Mandalorian spirits... I haven't seen you since you were a tyke."

Neryt nodded. "I'm going to be seventeen in a few days."

"Aya... we'll have to have a party while you're here."

"Neryt's gonna marry Dad and Daddy," Owen chirped.

Neryt facepalmed. She'd been waiting for the opportune time to announce the engagement, but here it was, out of the mouth of a precocious two-year-old with advanced speech capabilities thanks to his Force sensitivity. Neryt ruffled Owen's hair with her free hand.

"Eh? And who might that be?" Jango raised an eyebrow.

Ben and Dennis sheepishly waved their hands.

"You're having a proper Mando wedding, right?" Jango asked Neryt.

Neryt didn't say anything. They hadn't even discussed wedding plans - she had accepted their proposal just a few days ago.

"Riiiiiiight?"

"Well, I've decided to stay on Serenno -"

"-Mandos are Mandos regardless of where they're living. Clan Fett knows this well. But while you're here, you should have your wedding Mando-style."

Neryt looked pleadingly at her mother, but Irina just nodded. "I felt a strong gut feeling that I should come here," Irina said, "and now I understand why."

"Well, that's settled." Jango stood up from the table. "Wedding tomorrow night." He looked at the head waitstaff, who nodded and took out a tablet to start making plans.

The group were shown to several small guesthouses in the orchards - it was enough like the situation with the villas on Dooku's estate that the group settled in comfortably. Or at least most of them did. When they were in their guesthouse, after the children were put down for a nap, Ben asked Neryt, "So what exactly does a Mandalorian wedding entail?"

"Honestly, not much," Neryt said. "You usually exchange armor and weapons and take vows over it. The ceremony itself is pretty informal. It's what happens after the ceremony that Mando weddings are famous for - drinking, dancing, food, more drinking... lots of drinking and dancing. We'll be expected to dance a haka."

"Oh, like they were doing when we got here?" Dennis asked.

Neryt nodded.

"Oh, Force." Ben tried to imitate what he saw, mangled it, and Dennis and Neryt cracked up laughing.

"Everyone will be intoxicated enough that nobody will care if you don't get it quite right," Neryt assured him.

"That's good, because I really don't want to piss these people off." Ben scratched his head. "As it is, we're not exactly rich in the armor and weapons department."

"That's not exactly true." Dennis gestured to the suitcase that he'd put his mother's armor in. "Han has my mother's sword, but Neryt... you can have my mother's armor. It'll probably fit you."

"It seems fitting, somehow... Han is Neryt's half-brother, so one gets the sword and the other gets the armor," Ben said. Then he went into a duffel bag, and took out a helmet identical to Kylo Ren's. He handed it to Dennis.

"You want me to have this?" Dennis asked.

Ben nodded. "It's not simply that we're exchanging armor and weapons... it's what this symbolizes. Leaving my past behind. Trusting you with my life... my future."

Dennis took Ben into his arms and rained kisses over his face. Neryt watched them for a minute, feeling that tug at her heart, the beauty of the moment bringing tears to her eyes, and then she embraced them both.

"There isn't any Mando custom saying we have to abstain before the wedding, is there?" Dennis asked Neryt.

She shook her head.

Ben and Dennis kissed hungrily, and then they took turns kissing Neryt, the three undressing each other quickly, with shaking hands. They tumbled onto the bed together, Neryt in the middle, laughing at the ungraceful fall. "Life is good," Dennis said, before drawing Neryt's nipple into his mouth.

_

Despite Sev's dislike of space travel, he agreed to go with Dooku, Malak, Leia, Irina, Sifo, Jocasta, and Jango to Sundari, so Jango could meet with the other clan chieftains and let them know he'd decided in favor of the Separatists, and Irina wanted to visit the war memorial.

Sev cringed as he saw the barren landscape of Mandalore - he'd heard the planet was once heavily forested, so seeing much of it turned into a desert wasteland was painful to him. The dome of Sundari glittered in the afternoon light, and as their shuttle got closer to the dome, Sev saw the trees inside, like a greenhouse. The gates of the dome opened and the shuttlecraft maneuvered inside. Sev leaned on Dooku as he disembarked, stepping into the dome with shaking legs.

Several of the clan chieftains were waiting for them, and danced a haka to greet them. They rode a speeder cart to the capitol building, and over strong coffee, Jango addressed the clan leaders in Mando'a, while Irina translated to Basic. There was no objection to Mandalore joining the Separatists, but as the leader of Clan Wren pointed out, "We're not all the Mandalorians in the Galaxy."

"No, we're not." Jango frowned. "We will call a meeting of the diaspora." Jango turned to Dooku and said in Basic, "If we can get all our people united, you're looking at forty-seven more member worlds for the Commonwealth."

"How soon can they be here?" Dooku asked. "I have a set date to return to Serenno, but this is important enough for me to postpone by one or two days if needed -"

Jango asked the other clan leaders in Mando'a, and then he said, "The best way to negotiate these things is with a party. Neryt's going to have a lot of guests at her wedding." Jango folded his arms. "We're not just going to present this as the Commonwealth, but an alliance between Mandalore and Serenno. Aran would have wanted me to adopt Neryt if anything happened to him. If people hear my daughter is getting married to a Count of Serenno..."

"...which Ben technically is, since his father is a Dooku..." Leia reminded them.

"...this makes an even stronger case for the Commonwealth. It becomes about family. Mandos are all about family." Jango smiled.

"And speaking of..." Irina straightened in her chair as a man about Jango's age strolled into the meeting room, drinking iced coffee. "Hello, Mirin."

Mirin Fett was Jango and Aran's cousin - he had been a boy when the Clone Wars started. He was now the mayor of Sundari, which meant he had no decision-making power among the clan leaders, but he also shared much of the same mindset as Jango on things; indeed, he had been instrumental in leading the Mandalorians away from the New Mandalorian pacifism that had let the Empire conquer them. Mirin smiled at Irina, and several of the female clan leaders and a few of the men as well seemed to swoon - he was a very attractive man, light brown skin like the other Fetts, bald head, dark eyes, a square face that could either be stern or playful, and a muscular body. The heat of the summer sun under the dome meant Mirin was wearing a short-sleeved shirt and short pants that showed off the definition in his arms and legs, and the shirt rippled against his pecs and abs. Mirin had swirling dark tribal tattoos from his biceps down each forearm, and Sev watched them in fascination.

"Sorry I'm late," Mirin said. "But the girl I was just with isn't sorry, heyyyyyy."

The clan leaders laughed, and Jango rolled his eyes but also laughed. Jango filled Mirin in on the details of Mandalore's membership in the Commonwealth, and the gathering of the governors of the diaspora which would be happening tomorrow at Neryt's wedding.

"Neryt's getting married now?" Mirin rubbed his bald head. "Shit, where does the time go?"

"You should come to the wedding party," Irina said. "She'll be happy to see you."

"Eh, I'll come back with you tonight, stay an extra day, get caught up." Mirin grinned.

After the capitol building, the group went to the war memorial. Irina had flowers to lay there in memory of Aran. As she knelt to place them, Dooku put his hands on his sister's shoulders, feeling her pain in the Force. She loved Mace, but she would always love and miss Aran, who had been killed fighting for the Separatists in the Clone Wars. Jango also took a moment to honor his dead brother, and Mirin his dead cousin.

When Irina stood up, there was fire in her dark eyes. She turned to Dooku and said, "Don't let the sacrifice my husband made for your cause, be in vain." She turned to Jango and Mirin and said, "I know you have already agreed to join the Separatists... and good reasons were given... but here is another. Avenge Aran." She folded her arms. "Vader took me and my children from Mandalore, brought us to Serenno, to kill us during the Cleansing of Serenno. Neryt, Isha, and I are alive again, but that does not change the fact that we died horribly. We suffered. I suffered as my children were tortured and killed before me. Vader is alive again. I want that human shitstain to pay for what he's done." She spat, then.

Dooku's lips quirked. "Dear sister, is that any way to speak of the Chosen One?"

"Chosen One, my arse." Irina didn't care how unladylike she was being. "Chosen to be ripped from limb to limb, perhaps."

Jango nodded. "This is a blood feud, above all. Our ancestors will guide us."

On the shuttle back to Concordia, Jango looked troubled. Mirin finally asked, "What's eating you, cuz?"

Jango sighed. "Well, bringing up Vader being the 'Chosen One'..." He made air quotes. "I'm still uncomfortable with this Mandalore the Preserver business." He closed his eyes. "And yes, I do remember that life as Canderous Ordo. I wish I didn't."

"I don't think any of us are particularly comfortable with the weight of the burden that's been handed to us," Dooku said. "Yet that does not change what is - we are all back for a purpose greater than ourselves, and our greatness is needed to carry forth that purpose."

"So I suppose now's a good time as any to drop the bomb on you," Sifo said.

Dooku raised an eyebrow.

Sifo and Jocasta looked at each other, and then Jocasta looked at Irina, before Jocasta turned to Dooku. "Based on the research I've done, Idis... you look like the most likely candidate for the Sith'ari."

"What?" Sev's eyebrows went up.

Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose and made a Wookiee noise.

When Dooku could find his words, a few minutes later, he said, "I know about that prophecy. I am also painfully aware of the ways in which it applies to me. But I did not feel right claiming such a title for myself."

"Isn't part of being a Sith about claiming your own power and authority?" Leia asked. "So Dennis tells me."

"My brother's right," Malak said, nodding.

"It is one thing to claim the power and authority you know you have. It is another thing for one's reach to exceed one's grasp in a fit of ego," Dooku said. "The bigger one's pride, the harder one's fall. I was convinced I saw things so clearly, decades ago, and we all see where it got me. I've been very hesitant to -"

Sifo waved his hand dismissively. "You're the Sith'ari, Idis. It's pretty obvious."

Dooku sighed.

_

Back at the guest house, Dooku tried to meditate - the only real immediate solution to the weight on his shoulders - but he could feel Severin's agitation in their Force bond. Finally Dooku opened his eyes and asked him, "What's wrong?"

Sev folded his arms. "It was one thing for us to be in the Seven Light. You the Lord of Silence, me the Prophet of Fire. You Justice, me War. Whatever the fuck we even really do, whatever the fuck that even really means, because apart from Ben's little mythology story I never got the 'congrats you're the physical manifestation of a Force being' memo. But this shit with you being the Sithafari or whatever -"

"Sith'ari." Dooku bitchfaced.

"-is just a whole new added dimension of 'shit I did not sign up for'. You're like the Sith version of the Chosen One or some shit?"

Dooku nodded. "That's very much oversimplifying it, but yes. The Jedi had their Chosen One, prophesied to bring balance to the Force... he did just that by destroying the Jedi, who had been abusing the Light Side. As I told you some months back on Serenno, I joined the Sith with the intent to destroy them from within. To remake them into something better than they were... to bring them back to the original understanding of the Dark Side, Bogan's severe counterpart to Ashla's mercy. That does in fact fulfill the prophecy of the Sith'ari, but as I said in the shuttle back, it's a very big title to claim for oneself. Sidious and Plagueis had both claimed it."

"Both of them being hosts of Valkorion. Who is now being hosted by Snoke." Sev frowned.

"Yes."

Sev took a deep breath. "Kylo kept saying he would finish what his grandfather started. His grandfather killed you. I wonder if Valkorion knows you're the true Sith'ari and this is some kind of pissing match -"

"Oh, I'm sure he knows." Dooku closed his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose. "I'm not any more comfortable with this than you are. It does escalate the significance of this conflict with the First Order quite a bit. It's no longer just about preventing the First Order from taking over the Galaxy and building another Empire, worse than Vader's. It's about the true Sith'ari versus the usurper. And by extension, the true power of the Dark Side versus the perversion of the Dark Side that has been in play for thousands of years. A lot more is at stake here than anyone realizes."

"Well, shit."

"Yes. Shit, indeed. I didn't exactly sign up for this, but here it is anyway."

"For both of us." Sev shook his head. "I mean, I'm getting married to the goddamn Sith'ari. That's..."

Dooku nodded again. "You inspire my passion. Passion is where the Dark Side flows. Your role is not trivial."

"Yeah. And it's getting to be a bit much to have Spoop of the Week thrown at us. New revelations about what we were, who we are... I'm a man of science. There's too much I can't explain happening now and it just bugs me. A lot."

"And yet, part of being a man of science is acknowledging you don't know everything and being willing to explore those unknown mysteries, yes?"

"Yeah... when those explorations don't involve, like, prophecies and... Force wizards... and all that shit." Sev made a Wookiee noise. "My bar for what I think is crazy fucking shit has been pushed pretty high since this ride started the day I got hauled onto the Finalizer to become a Knight of Ren whether I wanted to be one or not. But this is too damn high now."

"And what exactly does that mean?" Dooku felt himself bristling. "Is this a rejection, because of a station in the Force that I did not sign up for?"

"No, it's not a rejection." Sev glared at him. "Why is my discomfort with all of this suddenly about whether I want to be with you or not?"

"Because between your words, the subtext between your text, it sounds like you're saying a line has been crossed."

"I didn't say that, at any point in time. If I was going to reject you, I would explicitly state so without dancing around it. But I have to be honest, I'm not happy with my feelings of being overwhelmed by this ridiculous Force mess we're in, being misread as a rejection of you, when I think I make it pretty obvious how I feel about you."

"For the most part you do. But sometimes you do things like dismiss something that was important to me for over sixty years of my life, as a 'hokey religion'."

"Oh, my Force." Sev closed his eyes. "You ask me what's wrong, which presumes you give a shit, and then when I tell you what's wrong, it stops being about trying to comfort me - you were on a good track with saying 'yeah, this heavy Force stuff makes me uncomfortable too', you should have continued with that - and it turns into wagging your finger at me because I'm an atheist. Maybe if you could stop feeling morally superior to the entire damn Galaxy because you were a monk for sixty-four years and stop smugly judging everyone for five minutes -"

"-Maybe if you could stop with the hyperbole -"

"OK, you know what?" Sev opened his eyes and glared at Dooku. "I'm done having this conversation, because it's not leading anywhere productive."

With that, Sev turned on his heel and stormed out the front door.

Dooku ran to the door and barked at him, "Where do you think you're going?"

"Out. To get some air. Air that isn't hot air blown out your ass."

"Brat," Dooku muttered between clenched teeth. He used the Force to slam the door.

_

For Mandalorians, the evening meal was lighter than the afternoon meal; nonetheless, food was plentiful. Sev and Dooku sat next to each other at their table, as usual, but Sev had only just gotten back a short while before dinner, and they had not spoken to each other since Sev's return. Even now, there was palpable tension between them, as they avoided looking at each other or touching during the meal. Irina shot them a few concerned looks, and Dooku looked away each time.

Some of the governors of other Mandalorian territories had started arriving, and Jango chatted with them in Mando'a. They seemed enthusiastic about the Commonwealth. At least I have that going for me, Dooku thought to himself with a small, sad sigh.

After dinner, an uj cake was brought out, made of nuts and fruit. Sev found himself having two pieces - as a doctor, he tried to avoid too much indulging in sweets, but the nut-and-fruit cake wasn't so bad... and he could tell from the way he was stuffing his face that he was still stressed out from earlier. He could feel Dooku bristling in the Force, still, and he ached to reach out to his bondmate and assure him Yes, I still love you, but he was angry. Feeling stung, himself.

Mirin Fett had kept quiet through much of the meal, watching, observing, but over dessert he said to Irina, "It's good to see you again."

"The same to you." Irina smiled. "It's been too long."

"Aye, it has." Mirin sipped his ne'tra gal, and then he raised the half-full glass to her. "I hope you've found a new man. Aran wouldn't want you to be alone, grieving him forever. Life is for living."

Irina nodded. "Actually, yes. He couldn't be here, but his name is Mace Windu."

"The Jedi?" Jango raised an eyebrow.

"Yes."

"He killed me, you know." Jango casually sipped his drink.

Dooku and Irina exchanged awkward glances, and then Irina said, "Yes, well, that was wartime..."

Jango waved his hand dismissively. "Good. Aran would have wanted you to be with someone who could kill the likes of me." He grinned.

"Yeah, it's a big bad Galaxy out there, especially with this snot-nosed punk kid running around trying to start Granddaddy's Empire back up again." Mirin snorted derisively.

"As you well know, I can hold my own pretty well in a fight," Irina told them.

Jango nodded. "Oh, I remember."

"But one can't help feeling protective of their mate, as Aran felt protective of you," Mirin said. "And warriors should be with warriors."

That was Jango's cue to turn to Dooku. "I see you've finally outgrown that backwards Jedi concept of celibacy."

Dooku's lips quirked. "Quite."

"How did you two end up together?" Jango asked.

Dooku and Sev finally looked at each other. Their eyes held for a moment, and Sev reached under the table and squeezed Dooku's knee. Dooku felt a lump in his throat, but he wasn't going to cry in front of the Fetts. Dooku turned back to Jango and said, "When I was resurrected, I was employed by the New Force Order to assist with the education of Force sensitives. Severin was conscripted into the First Order, specifically the Knights of Ren, a Dark Side cult within the First Order, and Supreme Leader Snoke sent the Knights of Ren to the New Force Order for training. Severin became my apprentice."

"But I bet he taught you some things, ah?" Jango chuckled.

Dooku blushed, and Sev snickered.

"First Order, eh?" Mirin raised his eyebrows.

"Yes. Severin was in the First Order for close to two years. The Knights of Ren all left voluntarily, with the exception of Kylo Ren himself and his wife, and they have been a valuable source of information on how the First Order operates."

Mirin gave Sev a long look, like an investor making an appraisal... or a hungry wolf deciding whether or not something was lunch. "I wouldn't have taken him as a soldier. He's too pretty."

Sev wasn't extremely familiar with Mandalorian culture, but he knew a challenge when he saw one. The Mandalorians were a warrior culture; Dooku had proved himself over the years as a capable warrior, which was why they were willing to join the Separatists. But there were doubts cast upon Severin as a warrior, which in turn cast doubts upon Dooku, right in front of the first wave of Mandalorian governors potentially interested in following Mandalore into the Commonwealth. Dooku would lose face, and possibly the entire bargain, if Sev didn't respond to this challenge. He wiped his mouth and stood up from the table, and there were a few gasps at the hiss and hum of Severin's lightsaber, glowing more intensely red in the twilight.

"Come over here and tell me that to my pretty face," Sev told Mirin.

Mirin climbed up on the table and ran, over the dishes and silverware, knocking them off the table in his path. Sev backed away a few feet just as Mirin took a jump off the table in front of him with a large, curved knife pulled. Sev took a swing at the knife with his lightsaber and it collided, but amazingly, the knife's blade didn't break. Sev looked at it with surprise.

"It's beskar," Mirin told him. "Best steel in the Galaxy." With that, Mirin swung his knife; Sev ducked down just in time to miss being stabbed in the eye.

Dooku had to stop himself from intervening. He watched, white-knuckled, as Sev and Mirin sparred, lightsaber versus beskar saber. When Sev Force threw Mirin, Mirin responded by Force throwing him back - apparently mild Force sensitivity ran in the Fett bloodline. As Sev was down, Mirin pounced on him, and disarmed Sev's lightsaber. He held his knife to Sev's throat, and Sev responded by kneeing him in the gut. Sev reached with the Force to pull his lightsaber back into his hand, and before Sev could stab Mirin with it, Mirin put Sev in a chokehold - not with the Force, but his bare hand. The pressure on Sev's throat was intensely painful, and between that and the strangling, Sev flailed helplessly beneath him, trying to hit and kick him and get him to loosen his grip, but to no avail.

Finally, just before he could asphyxiate, Sev got a hand to Mirin's cheek, and when he touched, he inflicted pain in the Force, stabbing through Mirin's temple into his eye through his jaw, radiating down the left side of his body. Mirin cried out like he'd been impaled on Sev's lightsaber, and Sev took Mirin's hand off his throat and then bent the middle and ring fingers back all the way, dislocating them. Mirin screamed again, and found the glow of Sev's lightsaber right in his face.

"Scream like a little bitch one more time, and my lightsaber will fuck your throat," Sev growled.

With that, he used his knees to push Mirin's body off his, and then he kicked Mirin while he was down. Jango stood up and clapped, and so did Dooku. Neryt and Irina also stood up and clapped, as did several of the Mandalorian governors. Sev brushed himself off before turning off his lightsaber and putting it back in his belt. The minute he did, Mirin stabbed him in the leg.

"Never turn your back," Mirin said, before falling back on his side, exhausted from pain.

"Son of a bitch," Sev snarled.

"Don't kill him," Jango warned Sev. "We need to get you to a doctor -"

"I am a doctor." Sev sat down and retrieved his medic kit. The dinner guests watched as Sev began to perform first aid on the wound, which was bleeding profusely. Sev donned medical gloves and tied a tourniquet around his leg, and poured saline over the stab wound, then began cleaning it. He poked his tongue through his teeth as he worked with his suturing tool. As he did, the waitstaff cleared the table.

Mirin finally got up, and when Sev's wound was closed and bacta was applied to the stitching to speed healing time, Mirin extended his hand. Sev took off his gloves and took Mirin's hand.

"You put up a good fight," Mirin said. "I respect that."

"Thank you." Sev nodded. "You fought well yourself."

"You learned hand-to-hand combat in your basic training, yes?"

Sev nodded again.

"You're good, but I could show you a few more things," Mirin said. "Might come in handy."

Sev finally looked up at Mirin, who was sweating from the intense fight and now had his shirt off. The dark swirling tattoos that Sev had admired on Mirin's arms extended in swirls over his chest and back. He had a sun tattooed on one shoulder. Sev couldn't help noticing the muscle definition in Mirin's torso, and the way the sweat made his skin glisten in the bonfires and starry twilight. Sparring always made Sev a little horny - this was normal for Echani - and the earlier tension with Dooku had produced an edge to Sev's fight that made him feel a little more animal than usual. He could smell Mirin's scent - not just the sweat, but the musk, the maleness, underneath. Sev was getting hard, despite himself.

"Tomorrow, perhaps, before the wedding." Sev stood up. "I need time to rest this leg."

"All right." Mirin grinned. "Tomorrow it is."

Dooku put an arm around Sev and ushered him away, walking quickly enough that Sev had to protest, "Hey, I just got stabbed in the leg, here."

Dooku's response to that was to pick Sev up and carry him back to the guest house.

Dooku didn't like the way Mirin Fett was looking at Sev, and he didn't like the way Sev was looking at Mirin. He realized it seemed hypocritical - they were surrounded by people in open relationships... happy open relationships - and Sev occasionally fucked his brother Dennis, which had been happening since he and Dennis came of age over a decade ago, and Dooku had no objection to that; he quite liked it when Sev came back from "big brother getting me ready for Daddy" so "Daddy can show me he fucks me better". But there was that, and there was this. Dooku felt self-conscious and even a bit ashamed he was reacting this way, but after their quarrel earlier in the day, he knew there was a vulnerability in that relationship... and Mirin Fett seemed like just the sort of professional player who could sense that vulnerability and exploit it, like a shark smelling blood.

After Dooku placed Sev down on the bed, he began to undress. Sev did as well, chuckling at him. "You like seeing me spar, don't you?" Sev asked.

"Mmmmm, yes." Dooku pounced Sev like the wolf that he was.

A few hungry kisses later, Sev gasped, "Just... be mindful of this leg. I can't be doing acrobatics tonight." He grinned before kissing Dooku again.

Dooku stroked Sev's cheek, and his curls. He gave Sev an indulgent little smile before lowering his head, taking Sev into his mouth. Taking care of him. Expressing his love, his respect, his admiration.

His need.

Reminding Sev of how good he had it.

Chapter Text

The next morning, more of the Mandalorian governors poured in. Jango Fett had also called a meeting of the clones and their descendants, at Sifo-Dyas's request; Sifo, Jocasta, Dooku, Sev, Leia, and Malak were taken by Jango into the main city of Concordia. Very few of the Old Republic's clone army were still alive, but there were a few clones present, and a few dozen children and grandchildren of the clone soldiers. A makeshift podium had been set up, and Sifo stepped to the podium, giving the audience a once-over before he spoke.

"I'd like to thank you all for taking the time to come out here," Sifo said. "My name is Sifo-Dyas. I am a former Jedi Master... I am the one who authorized the Republic's clone army, defying the Jedi Council to do so. Jango Fett was your progenitor... and I am your creator."

Sifo watched the clones and their descendants react, and waited a few minutes before he went on. "I had envisioned you as the protectors of the Republic. But instead, you were used to destroy the Republic. I know those of you who survive carry a burden of guilt about your actions in the Clone Wars and the fall of the Republic. I know that even before Order 66, there were those in the Jedi Order who treated you as less than human. 'Clones aren't people' was an all-too-common refrain. There were Jedi of the opinion that you should have never been created, that you were some sort of abomination against nature, against the Living Force itself, and the very presence of you caused the entire Jedi Order to 'fall to the Dark Side.'"

A few of the clones looked angry at this - Sifo's words had hit a nerve of painful remembrance. Sifo nodded, and said, "This is what you do not know. The Jedi Order forbid love and attachments. Just as I had defied the Council to create the clone army, I defied the Jedi Code itself in a secret relationship with this beautiful woman right here." Sifo put his arm around Jocasta. "And one of our greatest regrets is that we could not have children of our own - it was impossible to keep that sort of thing secret from the Jedi." Sifo then pulled his arm away and gestured to the crowd. "You, the clone army, are my children."

There were very few dry eyes in the audience; Sifo's own dark eyes shone with tears. "And whether you know this or not," he continued, "you did protect the Republic... the spirit of the Republic, which had been warped and corrupted into something it was never intended to be. When Tyranus recruited Jango Fett to provide the DNA material for the clone army... it was not simply because he was and is a great warrior, but because Jango Fett was one of the two Mandalorian survivors of Galidraan, a Republic-ordered genocide. Tyranus had concerns that the genocides would continue... that the Republic, left unchecked, would become a fascist, totalitarian regime even worse than Vader's Empire. Something that the ancient founders of the Republic would never approve of... they wouldn't have approved of the Republic as it stood in its final years. The New Republic has also failed. They have labor camps. They made a peace treaty with the First Order after the First Order destroyed their headquarters in the Hosnian system. The First Order now controls a third of the Outer Rim. They are a serious threat. And the Commonwealth of Independent Systems, that Tyranus founded, is the truest of current political factions to the original spirit of the Republic. You still have a purpose. You can fight with us, to restore law, order, and justice to the Galaxy. You are not a crime against nature, against the Force - the Force told me to manifest my vision into being, and here you are. Every single one of you who is left, and the blood that has flowed through you into your children and their children, you are sacred to me. And it is time for holy war."

Sev rolled his eyes, and Dooku elbowed him. Sev elbowed Dooku back.

Sifo stepped away from the podium, closer to the crowd. "Mandalore is joining the Commonwealth. But even more than allegiance to Dooku, or Supreme Commander Malak, or High General Leia Organa-Solo... follow me into battle. If they fall, I will continue their fight, somehow, some way, until my last breath."

One of the clones' grandchildren walked towards Sifo, and pulled out his beskar knife. Sifo took a deep breath, wondering if he was about to get stabbed... and then the young man got down on one knee and drove his blade into the ground. "For the ancestors," he said. "Yours and mine."

The rest of the audience followed suit. Sifo felt closer to tears.

After the clones and their descendants had knelt for a moment, Sifo said, "Rise up. And I will give you your first fight." He looked at Dooku, Leia, and Malak, who all gave him the thumbs up gesture. Sifo turned back to the clones. "We have intel that says the First Order has cloning facilities in the Unknown Regions. You will be our elite special force that handles this situation... destroying the facility and liberating the clones. Because they will be treated even worse in the First Order than you ever were by the Jedi. We have a former First Order Stormtrooper in the Resistance who has told us many things about what they are like to soldiers of his rank. They don't deserve this. They are people. And I will adopt them as mine, just as you are mine." Sifo's lips quirked. "After all, the First Order stole my idea."

Leia and Malak took the audience aside to brief them about the mission, and then Jocasta hugged Sifo tightly. Sifo could feel Jocasta's own rush of emotions - usually she was the more composed one of the two, still adhering to her Jedi training to control feelings... but this had hit too close to home.

"It's like a family reunion, almost," Jocasta said.

Sifo gave her a kiss, and nodded.

_

On the way back to the guest houses, Sev asked Sifo, "Did you have to use the phrase holy war?"

Sifo took a deep breath. "This has nothing to do with gods, or any kind of organized religion. Even you, as an atheist, have things that you hold precious in your heart - things that inspire something close to reverence. War is like that for the Echani, the Wookiees, and the Mandalorians." Sifo narrowed his eyes. "But this is more about your discomfort with being the Prophet of Fire, the embodiment of Destruction and War, than with my choice of words."

Sev looked away.

"It's been tense since you brought up me... being... the Sith'ari." Dooku sighed.

Sev glared at Dooku. "OK, could you not air our dirty laundry?"

"Sifo-Dyas is my best friend, and as of late, my adopted brother. You talk to your brothers about your problems, do you not?" Dooku glared back at Sev. "There is no 'dirty laundry' being aired here. There is simply the fact, obvious to everyone, that you are uncomfortable with your own higher purpose, and the group's higher purpose."

"It's not going to go away just because you want it to," Sifo said. "Sooner or later, and probably sooner rather than later, you are going to have to accept it. Call it what you want - an advanced Force being made flesh, quantum particles of consciousness guided by the Force into a new neural net, whatever - but you cannot allow your discomfort with the parts of this you don't understand, get in the way of the work to be done."

Sev pinched the bridge of his nose. Dooku was also pinching the bridge of his. Sifo and Jocasta chuckled at them, and Sev and Dooku both turned their bitchface to them, which made them laugh harder.

Sev couldn't get out of the speeder fast enough, when it arrived at the Fett farm grounds. Dooku and Sev marched in the direction of their guest house, but when Sev took another turn rather than heading for the door, Dooku grabbed Sev's sleeve. "Where are you going?" Dooku asked him.

"To take Mirin up on his offer of sparring and learning some more combat skills. I need to blow off some steam." Sev yanked his arm away, and then stalked off without a word.

Dooku sighed. He felt like he'd been slapped in the face.

Sifo put a hand on Dooku's shoulder. "Come have tea with us. We're going to Irina's guest house."

Neryt was there, just finishing up a show of modelling different outfits for the wedding party that evening. She was all smiles when the three friends arrived, oblivious to the tension swirling around her uncle.

"This is what I'm wearing to the wedding tonight," Neryt said, picking up a light pink, lacy dress.

"You'll look lovely," Jocasta replied, smiling.

Just then, there was a knock at the door from Reine. "You about ready to go?" Reine asked her.

Neryt nodded, her grin even bigger, dark eyes twinkling with mischief. She ran to Reine, and the two women kissed, before Reine took Neryt's hand. "Come on, and I'll give you your 'wedding present.'" Reine made air quotes. She and Neryt giggled, running off together.

Irina let out a little sigh.

"Are you all right?" Jocasta asked Irina, concerned.

Irina nodded. "Just a little envious, is all."

"Envious?" Jocasta raised an eyebrow.

Irina pursed her lips, and then she said, "I love Mace very dearly, but... when I was a young woman, coming of age, I did not just have a few male suitors, I had a few young ladies in my bed as well. Seeing my daughter with a girlfriend as well as two husbands-to-be, well... it makes me miss a woman's touch."

Jocasta turned pink. "I see."

"Something tells me Mace wouldn't mind if you told him you wanted a girlfriend, in addition to being with him," Sifo said. He leered at Jocasta. "A lot of men enjoy the thought of two women together."

Dooku cleared his throat; the topic of his sister's sex life made him uncomfortable. "Tea?"

Irina put on tea and then she asked, "Where's Severin?"

"He's sparring with Mirin Fett." Dooku tried to keep his tone neutral, but there was an edge to his voice that made Irina's eyebrows shoot up.

"Yes, I saw the way Mirin was looking at Severin." Irina nodded.

Dooku made a Wookiee noise. He'd been hoping it was just him, overreacting in a fit of insecurity. But that his sister saw it too...

"So you and Sev don't have an open relationship at all," Jocasta said.

Dooku shook his head. "Mostly not. He has a history with Dennis that predates me, but that is occasional. On my end, I don't want anyone else." Dooku couldn't see himself with anyone but Severin. Force knows I've had offers, over the years. But the bubbly, sassy, innocent-yet-naughty young Sith Lord had been the first and only to claim his heart.

"Well, I've seen the way Severin looks at you, so I don't think you have to worry." Irina patted her brother's hand reassuringly.

I hope not. Dooku managed a thin smile. He could feel in the Force that Sev was just sparring with Mirin. Nonetheless, the day could not end soon enough for him.

_

At sundown, bonfires were lit in the backyard of the Fett family farm. Clan Fett ushered Neryt, Ben, and Dennis to the largest bonfire, dancing a haka all the way. Once at the bonfire, Neryt, Ben, and Dennis took a moment to look at each other. They joined hands, and then pulled apart.

Dennis went first, giving Neryt his mother's armor. "I honor your strength," he told her.

Ben handed Dennis his helmet. "I give you this relic of my past, to symbolize trusting you with my future," Ben said.

Neryt activated her lightsaber, glowing violet, and she handed it to Ben. "I honor your courage," she said.

Dennis handed Neryt his red Sith lightsaber, and took Ben's blue crossguard lightsaber.

Ben drove the purple lightsaber into the ground, and knelt, taking Dennis and Neryt's hands in his free hand. "Dennis Yusanis, Neryt Dooku-Fett. Ni kyr'tayl gai sa'riduur." I know your name as my spouse. Ben rose to his feet after the vow.

Then Neryt donned the gauntlets from Ryanna Savros's Jensaarai armor, and took Ben's hand in one hand, Dennis's in the other. "Ben Skywalker-Solo, Dennis Yusanis. Ni kyr'tayl gai sa'riduur."

Dennis put on the helmet, and then he activated the blue crossguard saber and got down on one knee as Ben had. "Neryt Dooku-Fett, Ben Skywalker-Solo. Ni kyr'tayl gai sa'riduur."

And then Dennis felt like he had been smacked in the face, through the helmet. Something like a shock went through his hand from the lightsaber. For a brief moment, he saw.

Walking to the bridge of the Finalizer. Hux is already there, waiting for me.

"How is the Star Forge performing?" comes Kylo Ren's voice from my mouth.

"Better than expected." Hux hands me a tablet with schematics. I look them over.

"I want to see it on screen."

There is the Star Forge, in all of its horrible glory. Glowing in the darkness of space, with its own eerie light from the Force energy of the captives inside.

Then Kylo knows, someone is in his head, seeing what he's seeing. Knowing what he knows - that the Star Forge has been located, repaired, and is being used. He can feel me scanning the schematics for the coordinates. He screams, "GET OUT!" and then he screams wordlessly, hurling the tablet against a console. Shoves the intruder out -

Dennis fell over, choking underneath the helmet.

"Dennis!" Ben dropped down beside his husband and pulled the helmet off. "Are you OK?"

Dennis coughed, and nodded, air returning to him. Severin had run right over, and was scanning him with a medical tricorder.

"What happened?" Sev asked, trying to keep his tone professional.

"I... had a Force vision." Dennis closed his eyes and then opened them, Sev's green eyes burning into him. "When I put the helmet on. It somehow linked me to Kylo." Dennis frowned. "Then Kylo knew someone was looking at him."

"What did you see?" Ben asked.

Dennis sat up. Dooku and Leia were closer now, and Dennis said, "Take down these coordinates." Leia took out a holopad, and Dennis recited a series of numbers from memory. Then Dennis said, "That's the location of the Star Forge."

"There is no ignorance, there is knowledge." Ben shook his head, laughing a little. "Wow, you just used one of your Exile powers."

"Yeah, that knowledge came at a price." Dennis rubbed his head, which was now pounding. "Fucking hell."

"I have a pain reliever if you need it," Sev said.

"Ohhhh, I think we know more fun ways to make Dennis feel better." Neryt gave Dennis a wicked grin, helping him to his feet.

"And ne'tra gal cures all ills." Jango and Mirin came over with a bottle and a tray of shot glasses; Mirin held the tray as Jango poured, and gave three glasses to the newlyweds. Then Jango poured himself a glass and raised it. "A toast. Many years of happiness and health. May the war to come only serve to fuel your hunger." He knocked back the shot and yelled, "Oya manda!"

"OYA MANDA!" shouted the wedding guests.

Dennis, Ben, and Neryt drank their shots, and were promptly poured another. Then Jango and Mirin led the Mandalorians in a haka dance. Dennis, Ben, and Neryt looked at each other sheepishly and attempted to dance with them. Neryt had danced the haka before, and moved with a sinuous, sensuous grace that her husbands admired; Dennis was quick to learn and also moved fluidly, but Ben was having a painful time of it. Ben began to exaggerate the clumsiness, which made Dennis and Neryt laugh.

After a few songs, Ben looked at Dennis and Neryt and hissed, "Can we get out of here?"

Dennis nodded. He picked up Neryt, and Ben and Neryt carried away their wife amid howls and whistles of approval.

_

As soon as they stepped through the door of their guest house, Ben, Neryt, and Dennis practically ripped each other's clothes off. Owen and Lysa were being watched by Yoda and Chewbacca, so they could enjoy the night without interruption.

Neryt made it to the bed first, and lay propped up on one elbow, grinning invitingly. Dennis took a flying leap onto the bed, making Neryt giggle, and as they kissed, Ben pounced on both of them, Neryt laughing harder.

Ben reached out to stroke his husband's and wife's faces, pressing his forehead against their heads. "I love you both so much," he husked.

"We love you too." Dennis kissed Ben, and Neryt groaned with appreciation at the sight.

"Mmmmm, what to do?" Neryt stroked a finger over Dennis's jaw, down his throat, through his chest hair, over a nipple. Her touch lingered on the nipple, rubbing it; Dennis moaned.

Ben grinned, and lowered his head - Neryt moved her finger out of the way for Ben to seize the nipple in his mouth, making Dennis gasp and cry out. Neryt began kissing Dennis's neck, kissing her way down to Dennis's other nipple. As Ben and Neryt sucked both his nipples at the same time, Dennis arched to them, making delicious whimpers and sighs.

At last Ben took his head away and rasped, "What to do? Everything." He nuzzled Dennis's chest hair, and ran his tongue up Dennis's chest, over his throat, to claim his mouth.

Then Ben and Dennis smiled at each other, and turned their attention to Neryt, kissing down her neck, down to her breasts. Neryt clutched their heads as they licked and suckled, bringing her nipples to aching, taut peaks, soothed and tormented all at once by their lips and tongues. "Fuck, I love your tits," Dennis growled, before sucking a nipple even harder, tugging it with his lips, rewarded by Neryt's shudder.

Neryt brought his fingers down to her cunt, which was already drenched. After a moment of teasingly rubbing her clit in slow circles, and then rubbing in lazy, slow circles inside her, Dennis kissed down her stomach, to the white flourish swirling just above her mound, to trace the swirl with his tongue. Neryt loved it when he did that, spreading for him, pulling the points of his ears. Dennis groaned into her mound, and when his tongue lightly grazed the cleft, Neryt cried out, and again as he parted her thick folds so his tongue could brush the swollen, needy clit.

Ben kissed his way down and sucked on Neryt's labia as Dennis worked his magic on her clit with his tongue. Soon Neryt was writhing, rolling her hips, pleading for Dennis to make her come, juices gushing. Dennis groaned into her, loving her taste, loving her beautiful pussy, loving the way she responded to him. When Ben craned his head to push his tongue inside her, so Neryt had a tongue on her clit and on her G-spot, Neryt shrieked, and whimpered, "Oh please, oh please..."

"Mmmmmmmm." Ben sipped at her juices, savoring her sweetness.

Dennis sucked her clit, and after a minute of intense sucking, Dennis fucking her clit with his lips, Neryt climaxed. Ben felt her contract and groaned, lapping her spraying cream like he was at a fountain. Then Neryt watched as Ben and Dennis kissed, rubbing their tongues together, making a big show of her juices streaming between their mouths, and she was ready for another.

It was Ben's turn on her clit now. Dennis teased, kissing above her mound, tongue lashing the white swirls in her red skin, kissing and licking down one thigh, nibbling her thigh, making her crazy. Dennis then kissed his way up her body, nibbling and tonguing her navel, kissing and licking her stomach, feasting on her breasts, at last laying beside her to kiss her mouth, fingering her cunt as Ben's tongue lashed her clit, sometimes pausing to suck her juices from Dennis's fingers.

When Neryt climaxed a second time, Ben licked her right into a third orgasm, and as she squirted, he let her juices spray his face and chest. He came up to kiss her, and then Dennis began licking her glistening cream from Ben's body, as Ben groaned and stroked Dennis's hair and face, encouraging the attentions of his tongue. Even after three intense orgasms, seeing her husbands play together - knowing it was just the beginning for them - made her hungry for more.

Neryt watched with interest as Dennis kissed his way to Ben's cock, taking it into his throat with a naughty look in his grey eyes. Ben moaned and played with Dennis's pointy ears, shivering as Dennis worked his head up and down, cheeks suctioning, tongue swirling. Neryt came over to kiss Ben, and after a few deep, passionate kisses, Ben started kissing her neck, then took one of her lekku in his hands and made love to it, licking the brown stripes like they were a guide for his tongue. The sensitive, erogenous lekku quivered, Neryt's moans getting louder until she came a fourth time. Ben almost came just from that, and then Dennis took Ben's cock out of his mouth, licking, tongue-bathing, every sensual stroke of his lashing tongue making Ben groan and sigh. "Fuck," he said as Dennis lapped the leaking precum from the slit in the head of his cock.

Dennis smiled at him, and then he lay back, stroking his own very hard, leaking cock. Ben leaned in to worship Dennis's cock with his tongue, as Neryt rained kisses over his torso, paying special attention to the nipples, and nibbling at his stomach. Soon Neryt's head joined Ben's between Dennis's legs, Neryt sucking on Dennis's balls as Ben continued to lick the length of Dennis's shaft, swirling around the head and back down. Dennis arched to Ben, and when Ben's fingers found their way inside Dennis, gently rubbing his prostate, Dennis growled.

Ben couldn't resist - his tongue dipped into Dennis's ass. Dennis gasped and then let out a deep, breathy moan that made Ben's cock throb and Neryt's cunt twinge and drip. Ben tongue-fucked Dennis until Dennis was right on that edge, gripping the headboard of the bed, nails raking the wood, trembling, panting, whimpering. Just before Dennis could come, Ben stopped, and lapped the precum leaking down Dennis's shaft.

"Let's rim each other," Ben said.

Dennis patted his shoulders and Ben sat on his face. They rolled onto their sides to get a better angle, and Neryt rubbed her clit furiously as she watched her husbands devour each other's assholes, groaning into each other as their tongues lashed fast and hard. After a few minutes they were bucking their hips, fucking each other's mouths, and the sight of their toned, firm buttocks thrusting made Neryt shake, whimpering with how badly she wanted them. She had never seen a more erotic sight, and as intense as her need was to come, she never wanted them to stop, wanted to gorge on the sight of their delicious, sensual rimming. But soon Dennis and Ben were shaking uncontrollably, unable to hold back, and just before they came, they grabbed each other's hands. They came together, then, moaning into each other's asses, cum shooting over each other's faces. Neryt climaxed again, crying out as her pussy contracted hard beneath her fingers.

After a couple of minutes Dennis and Ben sat up, and then licked the cum off each other's faces and necks, giggling. The sensuality of licking each other and tasting their seed got them hard again, and Neryt felt herself aroused once more as she watched them rub their tongues together, cum-soaked cocks also rubbing together. Not able to help herself, Neryt crawled over to them and took both their cocks in her mouth. Ben and Dennis each took a lekku, pleasuring her lekku as her hot mouth gripped and suctioned them, her tongue savoring the taste of their seed, their musk. The three lovers found themselves quickly on the verge of another orgasm.

Dennis pulled Neryt's head up, and husked, "I have an idea."

"Oh, do you?" Neryt licked the precum on her lips, and Dennis bit his lower lip with a little growl, wanting her.

Dennis used the Force to unzip a duffel bag kept on top of a dresser, and Neryt and Ben watched as Dennis used the Force to retrieve a double dildo from the bag and bring it over. Now it was Ben's turn to bite his lower lip, moaning, his cock giving another gush of precum with anticipation at the toy, which he and Dennis had used quite a few times now.

Dennis retrieved the lube from the bedtable, and then he and Ben coated their fingers and kissed as they fingered each other, slicking and readying each other for penetration. Neryt played with herself some more, excited by the very thought of them sharing the toy.

Dennis and Ben sat together in the lotus position, and then Neryt guided the toy between them, Dennis tilting his hips first to take one end, then Ben leaning back and arching to take the other. Their asses full, their cocks and balls pressed together, they kissed, and then they pulled Neryt close, taking turns kissing her. Dennis took Neryt's hands, and she climbed between them, facing Dennis. As she impaled herself on their cocks, the three cried out together, almost coming right then.

All sense of time slipped away. Dennis and Ben took turns rolling their hips, slowly, sensuously, working the toy between their asses, groaning and grunting as it pleasured their prostates. Neryt slowly rode their cocks, kissing Dennis again and again, as Ben's arms reached around her from behind and roamed over her body, Ben kissing, licking, and nibbling on her neck and lekku. Every now and again Ben would tilt Neryt's face to his so they could kiss, and Dennis would lean over Neryt's shoulder to kiss Ben. Dennis kept one hand on Neryt's clit, and with the other, reached his arm around to stroke Ben everywhere that he could - his spine, his side, his hip, his face. The wet suctioning sound got louder and louder as they teased their way towards orgasm, and their cries were even louder. It was the most decadent pleasure any of them had known, every touch, every rub, every feel, deeply intoxicating, consuming them with sensation. And above and beyond the physical, it felt like they were making love with their souls, three become one, every movement of their bodies like a dancer's steps or an artist's brush strokes, expressing something ineffable, an ephemeral act of beauty to treasure in memory.

When they could hold back no longer, Dennis and Ben lay down, working their hips to fuck the dildo between them, and Neryt rode hard, giving Dennis a view of her breasts and lekku bouncing from the front, and Ben got a view of her ass jiggling deliciously from the back. Dennis reached around to slap her ass, and the fingers of his other hand fucked her clit, rubbing it just the way she liked it. "That's it, babygirl," he rasped.

Neryt rode even harder, as hard as she could, howling with frustration - so close, and yet the orgasm just glimmering out of reach, because her cunt couldn't get enough of those two cocks inside her... couldn't get enough of feeling Dennis and Ben fucking each other with the double dildo underneath her. Ben's cries were getting the loudest, and Dennis encouraged him, working his hips faster, until Ben was shuddering, biting his hand, "so close so close soclosesoclosesoclose-"

"Come, baby. Come all over my cock, inside this tight, hot little cunt..."

Dennis's words - and more than that, Dennis's voice - sent Ben flying. Neryt's climax came next, and her contractions and the feeling of Ben's hot cum triggered Dennis's vocal orgasm, spending and spending, gasping for breath as his toes and fingers curled, prostate and cock throbbing with release as deep and intense as Dennis had ever known.

Somehow, Dennis and Ben managed to dislodge the toy, and found themselves on either side of Neryt, who put an arm around each of them, smiling contentedly. Dennis and Ben took turns kissing her, and then they kissed each other, and Dennis and Ben snuggled into her breasts, Neryt stroking their hair, drifting off a little as the bliss of orgasm gave way to full-body relaxation.

When she came to, Dennis and Ben were making out again. Neryt had thought she was done with that last orgasm, shattering as it was, but her cunt twinged once more as her husbands sensually rubbed their tongues together, fingers stroking, caressing, teasing over chests and stomachs and hips. Neryt gasped as Dennis took his and Ben's cocks in his hand, kissing Ben deep as he stroked them to readiness.

Then Dennis looked at Neryt. "You want more too, don't you?"

Neryt could only nod, her words lost in the frantic animal need taking over her mind.

"You have another great idea." Ben cocked his head to one side, smirking.

"I want to fuck you," Dennis whispered to Ben, before kissing his neck, making Ben moan. Then he licked Ben's neck and husked, "While you and Neryt sixty-nine... so you can eat our cum out of her pussy, and she can taste her juices and my cum on your cock."

"Oh, fuck." Ben liked that idea, and so did Neryt.

Ben lay on his back, and Dennis squirted lube directly into Ben's ass, even though Ben was still lubed from before. He fingered Ben as he watched Ben and Neryt make out, and when Ben began licking Neryt's nipple, Dennis poured lube onto his own cock and stroked himself, groaning as Ben pleasured Neryt's breasts.

Finally Dennis cleared his throat. "I feel like I could bust all over you, and I know you like it when I come on you... but I really want to come inside you." His voice lowered. "I want to feel you, baby."

Ben groaned, and spread his legs wide. Dennis chuckled at Ben's enthusiasm, and then teased Ben for a minute, penetrating with just the very tip of his cock, until Ben screamed and thrashed, begging to be taken and fucked. Dennis stroked himself then, letting his submissive beg for a few minutes, until his cock couldn't take it anymore and he pushed all the way inside Ben. Despite Ben being filled with the toy a short while ago, and having taken Dennis's cock at least once a day for some weeks, he was still tight enough that Dennis had to rest inside him for a moment, not wanting to shoot right away at the delicious velvet grip of Ben's ass around him, like Ben was custom-built just for him.

When Dennis was ready, he began to thrust slowly. He watched as Neryt sat on Ben's face, and then lay down on top of him, taking Ben's cock into her mouth. Dennis stroked Neryt's montrals and lekku as Neryt sucked. "Good girl," Dennis said. Neryt loved the sound of that, just as much as she loved Ben's mouth on her.

And Ben ate her with even more hunger than before, sucking and lapping at her labia and clit like she was a ripe, juicy piece of fruit. The combined taste of her cream, Dennis's cum, and Ben's cum was a sweet ambrosia that Ben couldn't get enough of... and the thick petals of Neryt's labia, the plump, swollen clit, were a beautiful flower to him, begging for his tongue. "Mmmmmmmmm." Ben took a deep breath, inhaling her scent. "So good."

Neryt loved sucking cock, and she loved watching Dennis's cock work in and out of Ben's ass, loved watching Dennis's body as he fucked, the sultry way he narrowed his eyes and bit his lower lip as he savored every moment of Ben wrapped around him, and watching Neryt worship Ben's gorgeous cock.

When Dennis gave in to his lust, hammering away inside Ben, Neryt rode Ben's face, her head bobbing furiously, making a lewd sucking sound as she worked on him. Dennis stroked Neryt's lekku, and the combination of the lekku stimulation and Ben's tongue built her excitement to a frenzied, fever pitch until at last it shattered hard, her pussy squirting all over Ben's face and torso as she screamed around Ben's cock. Dennis watched as Ben's cream dripped from the corners of Neryt's mouth - she gulped down as much as she could, but there was so much of it. At last Neryt took out Ben's cock, still shooting, and jerked it so Ben's cock sprayed on Dennis's torso, and when Neryt leaned up to kiss Dennis with a mouthful of Ben's cum, Dennis gave three last hard thrusts before his own climax hit him, ringing his ears, making his head spin as he whimpered into Neryt's kiss.

The three collapsed together, laughing from the sheer euphoria of their release. And then Dennis heard himself saying, "I love you. I love you. I love you both so fucking much..."

"Awwww, we love you." Neryt nuzzled Dennis, and then Ben nuzzled him too. Ben kissed the tip of Dennis's nose.

In a cuddle pile, arms and legs entwined, they fell asleep, but in the middle of the night they woke up hungry for each other again, and fucked in different positions through the dawn.

_

After Ben, Dennis, and Neryt left the wedding party, it continued for a good while - Mandalorian weddings weren't simply about celebrating the union of the couple or group in question, but celebrating life itself.

Mandalorian traditional music had heavy drumming and deep chanting. Sev had enough ne'tra gal that he was in better spirits than earlier, and he grabbed Dooku's hands. "Come on, dance the haka with me."

Dooku bitchfaced. "I don't dance."

Sev let go of Dooku's hands and rolled his eyes. "Not even for me? Not this once?"

As if on cue, Mirin Fett sauntered over, grinning. He took Sev by the hand and hauled him off. Dooku glared as he watched Mirin demonstrate the haka - Sev was a fast learner and the two were soon dancing together... like a couple.

Dooku sighed. He hated the taste of ne'tra gal - it was sickeningly sweet - but he poured himself three shot glasses and knocked them off in succession. Irina raised her eyebrows from across the crowd, and Dooku looked away. He was tempted to go over to Mirin and punch him, but he knew it would look bad to the Mandalorians. The governors from the territories had agreed to join the Commonwealth, and they needed the numbers. Dooku couldn't lose face now, violating the sacred hospitality of Clan Fett, or he'd not only be going back empty-handed, he'd be lucky to go back at all.

But even more than that, Dooku wanted Sev to say something. Do something. And he worried that Sev wouldn't. They'd had a good run, these last few months, but Dooku feared that Sev was finally getting restless, deciding Dooku was too old, too stuffy, they were too different, especially where metaphysical subjects were concerned, at a time when those subjects could no longer be avoided. Maybe he has finally decided this business with the Seven Light is too much for him... and here is his chance to be normal, with someone who doesn't have the Force baggage that I have.

It felt like a stab in the gut. Indeed, it would be kinder if Severin stabbed him.

Irina finally walked over to her brother. "I'm about to go say something to Mirin," Irina said.

"Don't."

Irina bitchfaced. Dooku bitchfaced back, harder.

Mirin and Sev were now stealing the show, Mirin twirling Sev around and around, then Sev leapt over Mirin, and Mirin leapt over Sev, and Sev and Mirin used Force kinetics to tumble in the air, landing on their feet to dance fast and furious, as the crowd clapped to the rhythm of the drums.

"Oya manda!" Jango smashed an empty shot glass on the ground, a Mandalorian custom. Mirin and Sev had to skip over the broken glass. Then another broken glass. Then another. "Oya manda!" shouted Mandalorian governors as they shattered glasses. Sev and Mirin never missed a step, leaping and kicking and whirling in circles, around the broken glass and then away from it, to dance before the bonfire. Sev leapt over the bonfire, and then Mirin did, and then Sev leapt again... right into Mirin's waiting arms.

Dooku braced himself. Another stab, as he watched Mirin give Sev a passionate, hungry kiss.

Then Sev bitch-slapped him, hard.

A few gasps. Mirin held his face, looking shocked. Sev tugged on the O-ring of his collar; Mirin had visited other parts of the Galaxy and knew what the collar meant. "You had to have noticed this," Sev snarled. "You didn't ask my Master for permission. So rude."

Dooku breathed a sigh of relief... and he felt a head rush. Elation. He watched as Sev pulled a chain out of his pocket - the leash - and clipped it onto his collar. Then Dooku walked over - finally - to take Sev's leash, pulling Sev to him... to reward him with a kiss.

A soft, sweet, sensual kiss that made them both groan. Sev's hand trailed down Dooku's chest, and Dooku took Sev's hand just before Sev could grope lower.

Sev nipped Dooku's lower lip, and growled. "Come on," Sev said. "Let's go dance the horizontal haka."

Dooku rolled his eyes at Sev's choice of words, but also laughed - he did love his bondmate's humor. Dooku tugged Sev by the leash, back to their guest house.

Once they were inside the door, Dooku slammed Sev against the wall, kissing him hard enough to take his breath away. Sev threw his arms around Dooku, moaning into the kiss. Moaning again as Dooku unbuttoned Sev's shirt, leaning down to kiss and lick every inch of the flesh exposed beneath his fingertips.

As Dooku undid Sev's belt, Sev unhooked Dooku's cape, and then helped Dooku peel his shirt off. Sev ran his fingers through Dooku's chest hair, and began kissing Dooku's neck as he worked on taking off the older man's trousers. Their clothes fell in haphazard piles to the floor and for once Dooku didn't care about using the Force to fold them neatly. He cared about getting Sev naked.

Dooku pulled Sev by the leash to the bed, and they tumbled onto the bed together, kissing. Their hands roamed as they kissed again and again, and when their cocks rubbed up together, they both cried out at the sensation and the intimacy of it.

Then their eyes met. Sev could see pain in Dooku's eyes, and he reached out to pet his bondmate's white whiskers. "What is it, love?"

Dooku closed his eyes. Before he could make words, Sev could see it, in a flash of mental images across their Force bond. He could feel it.

"You thought I was going to go off with Mirin."

Dooku nodded.

"Oh, honey." Sev started laughing. "Oh, fuck no."

"You find him attractive."

"Finding someone attractive and being attracted to them are two completely different things, Idis." Sev rolled his eyes. "Seriously. Mirin is hot... but you're hotter." Sev leaned in to kiss Dooku, and began to kiss along the line of Dooku's jaw, loving the way Dooku's beard teased his lips, loving the little groan Dooku made as Sev teased a sensitive place. "He's too young for me." Mirin was Han Solo's age.

Dooku laughed. But he knew Sev was serious. "That continues to be a fear of mine. That I am condemning you to life with an old man."

"An old man who is in damn good shape for his age. You're in better physical condition than most forty-year-olds, for fuck's sake." Sev gave Dooku a sultry look. "And I happen to like your white hair..." He pet Dooku's face. "And your wrinkles add character." He kissed Dooku's nose. "You are so fucking sexy. And not just that you're a handsome fuck, but your elegance, your manners and class... your deep voice... and most of all, your mind turns me on. Your intellect. Your wisdom, gained through years of experience. Including and especially experiencing the Force."

"Yes, about that." Dooku took a deep breath. "That's been another concern, considering your response as of late to -"

Sev waved his hand. "Idis. Part of the reason why I've been expressing my discomfort with things I don't understand... is because I want you to help me to understand them. I am still your apprentice. You are still my Sith Master." Sev looked into Dooku's eyes, and took Dooku's hands in his, squeezing them. "I'm scared. But conquering fear is part of how Sith gain strength. You know how I asked awhile back when you were going to start teaching me Sith sorcery and Sith alchemy and you said I wasn't ready yet? With this battle against Kylo Ren - against Snoke, against Valkorion, who used Sith alchemy to rip you away from me at least once before, making sure Arren Kae was stranded on the surface of Malachor V, presumed dead... I don't have the luxury of not being ready anymore. We have to fight these bastards with every available weapon in our arsenal. I. Have to fight these bastards, as the embodiment of Destruction. I need you to help me unlock whatever the fuck it is I do."

Dooku kissed Sev's hands. "The problem is, little one, I barely understand any of this myself."

"So we'll explore together." And then Sev kissed Dooku's neck, his fingers exploring Dooku's torso. "We like exploring, don't we?"

Dooku's response was to take Sev's face in his hands and kiss him hard, with a growl. He pushed Sev onto his back, and kissed and nibbled his way down Sev's body, as Sev arched to him, moaning.

Dooku made his way to Sev's cock, and like the night before, he took it into his mouth, watching as Sev gasped and bucked his hips. Dooku's own cock throbbed, aroused by Sev's moans and the way his alabaster muscles rippled as he gently rolled his hips, moaning louder as Dooku slowly sucked him. After a few minutes Dooku took Sev's cock out of his mouth to lick it all over, from the head down the shaft to the balls and back up again, and then his tongue bathed Sev's balls, making Sev writhe and howl, cock leaking precum. Dooku laughed as his tongue plunged into Sev's ass, fucking Sev's prostate until Sev was right at the brink, thrusting against Dooku's mouth, whimpering, panting, begging to be fucked.

Dooku nibbled on Sev's inner thigh. "You want me inside you?"

"Force, yes." Then Sev's eyes met his, green fire blazing. "More than anything. More than anyone."

All of the earlier feelings of being stabbed by possible rejection now were soothed away... bringing tears to Dooku's eyes. He didn't want to cry, not now, not when they both needed to lose themselves in this.

But Sev saw the misty eyes, and he sat up. He took the old Sith Lord into his arms, and rained kisses over his face. "Idis. With the sole exception of my brothers - and even then, only occasionally - I don't want any other man. I only want you." Sev claimed Dooku's mouth, and they sighed together, Dooku melting beneath Sev's hand petting his cheek and whiskers.

"I don't want anyone else either." Dooku pressed his forehead to Sev's, and their noses rubbed together. "You are my first love. I have waited for you since I was fourteen. And that has been a very long time."

Sev grinned. "I hope it's been worth the wait." Sev kissed him again.

"More than worth it." Dooku kissed Sev back. "Especially when we do this." Dooku took Sev's cock into his hand, stroking it slowly. "I never understood why people made such a big deal about sex. Now I know why."

"Mmm-hmm. It's not just about sticking tab A into slot B. It is for some people - it probably is for Mirin Fett - but with people like us... we were made for each other." Sev gripped Dooku's cock, and Dooku groaned. "It's never been like this for me, with anyone else. You're the one." They kissed. "You've got me." Sev kissed him again. "Now take me."

They kissed hard, and then Dooku watched as Sev got on all fours, sticking his ass out in the air like an animal in heat waiting to be mounted. Dooku tugged the leash possessively as he used the Force to grab their lube, and Sev cried out as Dooku poured the lube into the crack of Sev's ass, feeling it drip down. Dooku used his free hand to finger Sev, working the lube inside of him, until Sev was bucking his hips wildly, fucking Dooku's fingers, moaning "Please, please..."

Dooku savored the sound of Severin's begging, until his primal instinct took over. He lubed his own cock - almost bringing himself off in the process - and knelt behind Sev. He pushed into Sev slowly, groaning as he felt Sev yield to him, taking him all. After allowing Sev a moment to adjust to the length and thickness of him, he let Sev have it. Usually Dooku took it slow, building up - but this resolution of tension between them was too intense... his hunger too powerful. And Sev loved it, their hips slapping together as Sev fucked back at him, giving as good as he got, fisting the sheets, whimpering as Dooku reamed his ass.

"Daddy, Daddy, Daddy," Sev cried.

Dooku tugged on the leash. His free hand reached to Sev's cock, working it in the same furious rhythm as his thrusts. He could feel Sev's excitement rising, and his own was right there with him, losing himself in the act of raw, furious, animal fucking, Sev's hot ass bouncing against him, the shapely back arched in ultimate submission. Sev gave himself completely, surrendering to his Master... being owned, claimed, possessed with every stroke deep inside him.

"Fuck me, Daddy... oh, fuck, don't stop..."

As badly as Sev needed to come, he needed to feel even more. The sensations on his cock and prostate played in harmony with the feeling of need, a need that only Dooku could fill...

...letting go, letting Dooku guide their pleasure, letting himself be there to be taken, used, fucked, as long and as hard as his Master wanted...

...to hold him in his most intimate place, accept him, worship him.

"Fuck me, fuck me, fuck me, get it getitgetitgetit Daddy, fuck me hard..."

They were getting closer, both trembling. Dooku leaned down, his chest against Sev's back. His lips grazed Sev's shoulder, and Sev whimpered as Dooku nibbled. Then Dooku brushed Sev's curls out of the way and kissed the sensitive nape of Sev's neck, and when he took flesh between his teeth, like an animal dominating its mate, Sev lost control. And with Sev contracting around him, Dooku lost control as well, a few last sharp jabs before he spent, shooting deep into Sev's channel. They collapsed together, moaning with each delicious throb of orgasm.

It felt like an eternity before Sev found the ability to speak again, and all he could say was, "Oh, Idis." But in those two words - speaking the name that Dooku's mother had taken away - Dooku felt like Sev told an entire story. He could hear the emotion shaking and husking Sev's voice... he could feel the depths of Sev's love, holding him tight in the Force, as Sev still held him inside.

Dooku pulled out of Sev, and rolled Sev onto his side. Their eyes met, and they kissed, a soft, lingering kiss that kept the embers burning. Dooku pulled Sev into his chest, holding him close, rocking him.

"I love you," Dooku said.

"I love you, Idis." Sev lifted his face up to meet Dooku's eyes once more. "Please don't doubt that. I know I'm a brat sometimes..."

"Sometimes?"

Sev grinned. "But I'm your brat." With that, he nipped Dooku's lower lip, and then he grabbed Dooku's ass.

Dooku's response was to slap Sev's ass. Sev moaned, and the sound of Sev's moan made Dooku's cock wake up again.

"Oh, my." Sev felt that, and it stirred him erect as well. "I guess we're still hungry."

"Mmmmmmm." Dooku kissed Sev. "It helps that you're so appetizing."

"Is my wolf going to eat me?"

Dooku slid down the length of Sev's body, and took Sev's cock into his mouth. Sev cried out, and clutched his bondmate's head. "Daddy..."

"Mmmmmmmm." Dooku sucked enthusiastically, and Sev's cries just made him even hungrier.

Just before Sev could come in his mouth, Dooku came up to kiss him. Sev's cock was leaking a copious amount of precum, and Sev groaned as he tasted himself on Dooku, and groaned again as Dooku rubbed his cock against Sev's, slicking his cock with Sev's precum.

"I want you," Sev husked. "I want you so fucking bad..."

"You have me. I'm yours." Dooku pushed Sev onto his back, and then pushed inside him. "And you're mine."

This time they fucked more slowly, to start. Kissing again and again, hands roaming over each other. Making lots of eye contact, whispered words of endearment between moans and sighs.

Sev's right leg was propped up on Dooku's shoulder, and after awhile both his legs were on Dooku's shoulders. And when they could hold back no longer, Dooku knelt once more, Sev's buttocks lifted off the bed, as Dooku nailed him harder and harder, loving the way Sev writhed and whimpered and screamed.

"Oh, Daddy, fuck me, fuck me, fuckmefuckmefuckme, DaddyDaddyDaddy, give me that cock, Daddy, punish my ass..."

"That's right. Who does this belong to?"

"You..." Sev's eyes pleaded with his. "You."

Dooku groaned. He fucked as hard as he could, completely lost in his lust for Severin's body... his love for the fierce, fiery, feisty young Sith who gave himself freely, wholeheartedly... and he gave right back, wanting to make Sev come as hard as he'd ever come.

A few minutes later, he achieved just that, with Sev letting out a wordless howl as he spouted over Dooku's chest and stomach. Dooku cried out Sev's name as he climaxed, the Force bond intensifying their pleasure... sweet, sweet pleasure, almost painful in its intensity. Everything was beautiful and everything hurt, overwhelming, exquisite, alive. Singing with the Force.

"Oh, darling." The tears came now. Dooku cried on Sev's shoulder, and Sev cried with him. "My darling. My sweet, precious boy."

"Idis." Sev kissed his tears. "My love." Sev clasped Dooku's hand, and kissed it before pressing it to his heart.

It was awhile before they spoke again. "I'll be glad when we're back on Serenno," Sev said.

"So will I."

"I miss it. It's home." Sev turned to Dooku. "Our home."

"It makes me happy to hear you say that."

"Holy fuck, Darth Tyranus admitted to being happy."

Dooku slapped Sev's ass again, and chuckled. Sev laughed with him.

"You make me happy." Dooku stroked Sev's curls, and kissed the top of his head.

"You make me happy, too." Sev kissed Dooku. "And horny."

"I had no idea. Truly. I'm shocked by this revelation." Dooku's voice was dry, but his dark eyes twinkled.

"I'll have to demonstrate." Sev pushed Dooku onto his back, kissing him hard. Dooku couldn't believe it, but his cock was stirring again, insatiable for his young bondmate. Sev straddled him, and they kissed as Dooku slid inside him a third time. Sev rode slowly, wanting to make this last... to make this the most sensual, pleasure-filled night of their lives to date.

To lay any last lingering doubts to rest, replaced with delicious memories, ready to spark future passion.

Chapter Text

After the group got back to Serenno, the next few days passed in a blur of activity. And then, the day before Sev and Dooku's wedding, the charter for the Commonwealth of Independent Systems was to go live on the HoloNet.

To celebrate the formal announcement of CIS to the Galaxy, a celebration was being held at the new Resistance base in Carannia. This was also an elevation ceremony - Malak and Leia would be formally recognized as the Supreme Commander and High General of the Commonwealth Armed Forces, first and second in command respectively; the former Knights of Ren would be given a promotion within the Commonwealth Armed Forces of one rank above what they held in the First Order, so Severin and Dennis were being given the rank of General, and Reine would now hold the rank of Colonel. Han Solo was being given his old Rebel Alliance rank of General, and Poe Dameron was being promoted from Major to Colonel. Finn was being given the rank of Major.

This was also the first time wearing the new uniforms - a simple cut like that of the First Order and Empire, but all ranks had a dark blue shirt and black pants; the dress uniform added a black coat trimmed with dark blue. Dooku himself had a uniform like the others but the shirt was dark grey, and he wore his customary cape over his shoulders, black.

Sev couldn't stop admiring Dooku in his uniform, and Dooku admired Sev as well - it had been awhile since Dooku had seen Sev in the First Order uniform, and he'd missed seeing his bondmate in uniform. General Severin Yusanis was also now in charge of the Commonwealth Armed Forces MedCorps, and the pride Sev wore in his new position was just as appealing to Dooku as the way he looked in his uniform.

Finn was grinning from ear to ear - he'd been a mere janitor in the First Order, even though he was the best marksman in his Stormtrooper class. He liked that the Resistance took him seriously, and he felt like he was doing something important. Reine grinned too when she saw her brother.

"Looking good!" she told him.

"You too," Finn said.

Reine gave Finn a noogie. "I outrank you."

"Maybe not for long," Poe said. "We've got our work cut out for us."

"I'm looking forward to it," Reine said. "The First Order can go to hell."

"The First Order is hell." Finn frowned, remembering.

Reine gave Finn a hug. "If I'd known that my own brother was being kept from me..." She shook her head. "I will never forgive Kylo Ren for that, alone."

"He's caused a lot of family separations." Poe sighed, thinking of Rey, wherever she was, out there with Luke.

"I miss her too," Finn said.

Finn and Poe hugged then, looking almost tearful, until Reine gave Poe a noogie too. Poe responded by tackling Reine and giving her a noogie; the two rolled around on the floor, tickling each other, until Dooku loomed over them and cleared his throat.

"Are we ready for the photos?" Dooku asked them.

Finn, Poe, and Reine made their way to a backdrop where Leia, Han, Malak, Sev, Dennis, and Vice Admiral Holdo were waiting. Ben was manning the holocamera. The group would take some seated photos, and some standing.

Just before the next-to-last photo, Sev took out the Brat tiara and casually put it on his head. The last photo had Dooku bitchfacing at Sev, who was grinning.

Dooku yanked Sev to his feet by his collar. Sev's grin got even bigger.

"This. Is. Serious. Business." Dooku narrowed his eyes.

"Yes, it is. War is very serious."

Dooku pinched the bridge of his nose and made a Wookiee noise. When he looked at Sev again, who was still grinning, Dooku wound up laughing - rolling his eyes, but laughing.

"What am I going to do with you?" Dooku put his hands on his hips.

"I have a few ideas..."

Dooku made an exaggerated sigh, shaking his head. Sev stuck his tongue out at him. Dooku found himself sticking out his tongue, in return.

"Don't stick that tongue out at me unless you plan on using it," Sev teased.

"Oh... I intend to." Dooku reached around to grope Sev's ass. "Later." He slapped Sev's ass. "Remember we have reservations for dinner in a few hours."

"That's a few hours from now." Sev bit his lower lip.

"Believe me, I'd love to put you in line for your shenanigans right now, but I have to be ready to take the influx of messages that will likely be coming in between now and then. However, you can help prepare me." Dooku took out his credits card, and handed it to Sev.

"Are you recommending I take a shopping trip to Temptations, then?"

"That's an order, General."

Sev saluted, and Dooku saluted back, and then Dooku playfully spanked Sev again, and Sev made a growl that made Dooku wish he had a free afternoon. Sev gave a little wave and blew him a kiss as he walked off, and Dooku watched Sev's ass all the way out.

_

As Sev went shopping, the CIS charter went up on the Holonet.

Salutations,

There are those of us in the Galaxy who are not satisfied with business as usual in the New Republic, nor do we welcome being ruled by other organized groups in the Galaxy who have a similar dissatisfaction.

In the interest of solidarity, the Commonwealth of Independent Systems is being established.

This is different than its predecessor, starting with the name: most of its starter member worlds are not Republic member worlds, so this is not a Confederacy as we are not seceding (though we are open to member worlds who desire to secede from the Republic). This is also based in a different set of circumstances than its predecessor.

Its predecessor, the Confederacy of Independent Systems, offered the promise of free trade to its members, which was attractive in a time when the Republic was stifling economies and contributing to poverty. The Confederacy of Independent Systems was also, as the history books have shown, a "two-man con" between myself and Chancellor Palpatine to get the Empire in place on the foundation of the Old Republic.

I cannot say I fully regret this action - the Old Republic had been guilty of a great many things, and needed to change - but I also can tell you that I know full well the Empire made many mistakes and it would have been run very differently had I lived to see my plan to fruition. Not only did the Empire run extremely counter to certain ideals of order and justice that I had - I had quite the existential crisis following my resurrection - but when it fell and the New Republic was put in place, the New Republic has not only failed to fix the damage that was done during the time of the Empire (and indeed, what damage started in the Old Republic), but there are worlds that suffer in the New Republic even worse than they did during the Empire.

I am a firm believer in paying my debts, and I decided to start the Commonwealth of Independent Systems as a way to help pay the debt that I owe, from my hand in creating the Empire, which in turn created the New Republic. I cannot undo what was done in the past, and to change one action might have made things even worse. What I can do is help work to make things better in the present, and work towards a better future for the Galaxy. Within the last year I have gotten married, and started a family with my beloved - one of the last things I had expected to do in my old age, and yet, one of the best decisions I have ever made. My children, and yours, and our children's children, deserve hope. Many feel that there is no hope in this universe. I am here to tell you differently. Where there is life, there is hope.

So the Commonwealth of Independent Systems is quite different than its predecessor - we are here to help its current member worlds and future member worlds rebuild their worlds, and become stronger than they were before. A few of our core policies include

-Free health care and education. Worlds in the Commonwealth can determine what constitutes proper education on a case-by-case basis, per their culture, but there should be some common standards such as Basic literacy. If your world needs help with financial resources to accomplish providing this, the nobles of the D'Astan Sector have the funding.

-Environmental protection and restoration, including cleaning air and water as needed, even terraforming of member worlds where plant and animal wildlife has fallen into decline; again, financial assistance is available to make this happen.

-Slavery is not tolerated, as people are not property; slave traffickers shall be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

-Civil rights protections - no one shall be discriminated against in employment, housing, government resources/services or public accommodations on the sole basis of species, race, sex/gender, sexual or gender orientation. Hate crimes are punishable by law. Police forces shall not "profile" citizens.

-Cultural autonomy will be respected and celebrated on its member worlds, so long as it does not violate civil rights or involve criminal behavior.

In addition to the above, we will give higher trade priority between member worlds of the Commonwealth, whilst we will not prohibit trade with worlds outside the Commonwealth. This will improve the economy of the member worlds.

We also have a military in the event that member worlds or the whole of the Commonwealth itself needs defense from outside threats (or terrorist or insurgent groups inside the Commonwealth). This military includes the Resistance - a few of us in leadership positions within the Commonwealth formerly were part of the First Order, and it is from our perspective as former insiders that allying and cooperating with the Resistance is our collective best interests of safety and stability in the Galaxy.

A member list of worlds joining the "first wave" of the Commonwealth will be available on holonet; my homeworld of Serenno is the capital of the Commonwealth at this present time.

As a precautionary measure (as we cannot be sure what the reaction to this announcement will be from the New Republic and other factions) security has been heightened in the D'Astan Sector and it is strongly recommended you get clearance if you are doing business in the Sector, especially if you have business with Serenno; we do not take responsibility for what happens if you do not notify regional authorities of your travel into this region prior to your arrival.

If you have any questions or concerns, you may address them with me in holomail; please allow at least three days for a response. Higher priority is given to applications from government officials of prospective member worlds.

-Count Idis Dooku, Regent of Serenno
High Justice, Commonwealth of Independent Systems

Alexis Yusanis
Supreme Commander, Armed Forces of the Commonwealth of Independent Systems

Leia Organa-Solo
High General of the Resistance and the Armed Forces of the Commonwealth of Independent Systems

Dooku took a deep breath, and waited.

_

Sev didn't want to go to Temptations alone. He went to the family dining room to see if anyone was there - Neryt and Reine were having tea with Jocasta and Irina. Ah, perfect, Sev thought to himself.

"I'm going to Temptations, you want to come with?" he asked.

Neryt's face lit up and Reine nodded enthusiastically. "I could use some new lingerie to impress Malak and Neryt," she said. "Maybe buy a toy or two." She and Neryt looked at each other and giggled.

Irina facepalmed, but then she said, "Lingerie sounds like a good idea. Mace would appreciate seeing me in something sexy, I'm sure." She elbowed Jocasta. "Sifo would probably love to see you in lingerie, as well."

Jocasta blushed. After a minute she took a sip of tea and said, "All right."

The five piled into a speeder car - Neryt was driving, and Sev claimed shotgun - and they rode into Carannia. It was a cool and rainy late fall day, so the city was quiet, and Temptations was open but they were the only customers in the store when they arrived.

Sev picked out a paddle to be spanked with - the sales clerk gave him a few different selections, and Sev chose an ebony wood paddle carved with a rose design. But his female friends looking through the lingerie made Sev decide he also could go for a few new lacy things, especially with his wedding tomorrow night. He started with selecting a white garter set for his wedding night, and then a few more sets - purple, light pink, and a rich dark royal blue, Dooku's favorite color. The blue panties were satin rather than lace, with a scallop trim, and the blue garters topped sheer black thigh-high stockings. Sev wanted to wear the blue number tonight as a way to congratulate his bondmate for getting CIS off the ground, since blue was the Commonwealth's color.

While Sev took time looking through lingerie and making his choices, Irina and Jocasta were given permission to try things on in the back fitting room. After Jocasta tried on the piece she liked the best and spent a few minutes looking at herself in the mirror of her changing stall, there was a knock on the door. "It's me," Irina said.

"What is it?" Jocasta asked from behind the door.

"I wanted an opinion on how this looks."

Jocasta opened the door of her stall and there was Irina, in a burgundy-and-black corset, black lace thong panties, and black garters leading to black lace-trimmed thigh-high stockings. Irina had an hourglass figure of someone years younger, and, Jocasta thought, great legs. Irina's short, silvering dark hair was a little messy, and there was a playful look in her dark eyes. As Jocasta's eyes roamed over her friend, Irina's nipples stood to attention in the satiny fabric of the corset, and Jocasta felt her cunt twinge; she'd had fantasies about women, and Irina was a gorgeous woman, who she also happened to care about deeply. She hadn't wanted to have feelings for her, romantic or sexual, but it was harder to ignore when Irina was standing in front of her looking so...

"...Delicious." The word came out before Jocasta could stop herself.

Color flushed in Irina's cheeks, and heat flashed in her eyes. She gave a small, predatory smile as she took a better look at Jocasta, who also had an amazing figure for her age - a lifetime of Jedi conditioning paid off, and the Force was kind to her. Jocasta was wearing a peacock blue lace bra, matching panties, and matching garters on sheer black stockings. Irina noticed that the panties were crotchless.

"Oh, my," Irina said, staring at the crotchless panties.

"Do you think it's a bit much?"

"Oh, not at all." Irina watched as Jocasta's own nipples hardened in their bra. "You look good enough to eat."

There was a moment when Jocasta felt like she couldn't breathe, just trembling with lust and need - and then Irina got down on her knees and took a lick at the exposed cleft. Jocasta gasped and then let out a moan, coming right away. Irina gave a little mischievous laugh and then lapped vigorously, bringing Jocasta to a second climax, one where she cried out "Irina!" as she came.

Sev's eyebrows shot up when he heard the sex noises from the fitting room. The sales clerk was very nonchalant, acting like nothing unusual was happening - Sev guessed this happened a lot at Temptations, between the sex toys and the lingerie - but Neryt looked mortified, and Neryt's look of anguish made Sev and Reine crack up laughing.

Neryt bitchfaced. "It isn't funny, you guys."

"No, it's not funny. It's hilarious." Sev grinned. "Also, moments like these make it very clear who you're related to."

Neryt bitchfaced harder.

Jocasta and Irina could hear the laughter - especially Sev's - and they laughed, too. Irina came up to kiss Jocasta, and Jocasta moaned into the kiss as she tasted herself.

"We need to take care of you," Jocasta said, feeling emboldened, rubbing Irina's nipple through the fabric.

"And we will, once we get back home." Irina kissed Jocasta again. She began kissing Jocasta's neck and husked, "You don't know how long I've been wanting to do this to you."

Jocasta's hand slid down to grope Irina through the panties, which were soaked. They kissed again, and then Jocasta had a flash of memory, when she was Brianna the Last Handmaiden - daughter of Yusanis and Arren Kae - and Irina was a Mandalorian bounty hunter named Mira. There was a continuity where Brianna had been with Sifo when he was Atton Rand... and a continuity where Brianna had been Mira's lover. Jocasta's hand reached back up to stroke Irina's face.

"I've been waiting a long time too, Mira," Jocasta said.

Irina shoved her against the wall, kissing Jocasta with passionate abandon. Irina's fingers slipped between Jocasta's legs and rubbed her to a third climax, and then Jocasta watched as Irina sensually licked and sucked the juices from her fingers. It made her want to come again, but they really did need to get back to the palace.

Jocasta had a moment of panic about Sifo's reaction - and then she heard him chuckling in her head. It's about time you two got it on, he told her through the Force.

After everyone paid for their items, they rode back to the palace. Jocasta and Irina made out in the back seat like a couple of horny teenagers until Neryt said, "Mom. MOOOOOMMMM. MOTHER."

"Yes?" Irina smirked.

"Could. You. Not."

"Why do you get to make out with your husbands and your girlfriend in front of me, but I can't make out with my girlfriend?"

Jocasta felt a happy flutter at being called Irina's girlfriend, and Irina squeezed her hand knowingly.

"Because..." Neryt waved her hand, searching for words. "FFFFFFFFFFFFF."

"I'm sure if you tell Ben how traumatized you are by your mother's sex life, he'll sympathize," Irina teased.

Sev snorted. "He's not as traumatized as Kylo, though."

Neryt also snorted. Dennis had told her the story of how Kylo wanted Sev to kill him for "treason", that treason being his involvement with Leia. "Nobody's as traumatized as Kylo. Let me play the Galaxy's tiniest violin for him." She rubbed her thumb and index finger together.

_

Malak now had an office at the Resistance base in Carannia, and just before he was about to go home to get ready for the dinner reservations Dooku had to celebrate the CIS charter, his intercom beeped.

"Yeah, go ahead," Malak said.

The communications officer said, "Commander, we have a transmission from the First Order. Kylo Ren is insisting to talk to you directly."

"Oh, really." Malak sighed. "OK, send it over."

Malak turned on his holoscreen, and for the first time in over a month, was face-to-face with his former best friend... or would have been, if Kylo were not wearing his mask.

"What do you want?" Malak asked.

Kylo's voice was distorted by the mask. "I wanted to congratulate you."

Malak said nothing.

Kylo went on, "Supreme Commander of the Commonwealth Armed Forces. We are truly equals now."

Malak gave a derisive snort.

Then Malak said, "Now." He made air quotes. "'We are truly equals now.'" Malak shook his head with disgust. "Bitch, we were always equals." He clicked his tongue. "Force, people were right when they said you took me for granted, that you didn't respect me..."

Kylo made a sound of protest, and then Malak waved his hand dismissively. "Do you have anything actually important to say, or are you just going to waste my time some more?"

A deep breath came through the mask. "How have you been?"

"Like you fucking care how I've been. You ordered one of my brothers to execute my other brother. You know how important my family is to me."

"Which is your greatest weakness. I was trying to help you."

"OK, Darth Edgelord. If family means nothing to you, I guess you won't mind that I did your mom."

"You. Did. What."

Malak nodded. "I fucked your mother."

"...no..."

"Search your feelings. You know it to be true."

Kylo growled through his mask. "Anything else you need to get off your chest, you treacherous bastard?"

Malak sat back in his chair, steepled his hands, and licked his lips. "She tastes really good."

"I WILL CUT OFF YOUR JAW AGAIN, YOU -"

"Oh, and there's one more thing." Malak grinned. "You know how you stabbed your dad?"

Kylo waited.

"...so did I." Malak winked, and bit his lower lip.

It took Kylo a minute to realize what Malak meant, and then he began to scream, "NO! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"

Malak cut the holofeed, laughing until tears rolled down his face.

Chapter Text

On the way back from the celebratory dinner, Leia opened a bottle of Serennian champagne in the backseat of the speeder limo. They'd already had wine with dinner, but Leia was feeling accomplished.

"Another toast," she said, raising her glass. "Not just to the Commonwealth, but to us as a team."

"Salu," Sev said, smiling, clinking glasses with her. The others followed suit.

After he took a sip of his champagne, Malak swirled it around in his glass, inhaling and appreciating, and then he said, "So there's something I wanted to bring up, and the restaurant being a semi-public space didn't seem like the right place for it."

Dooku gave Malak the "go ahead" gesture.

Malak frowned. "We received a transmission from the First Order. Or more specifically, I received a transmission from the First Order... from Kylo, himself."

Dooku took a deep breath. "What did he want?"

"I'm really not sure. He said he wanted to congratulate me. He said 'We are truly equals now.'"

"Now." Sev snorted.

"I know, right? That was exactly my reaction." Malak rolled his eyes. "That annoyed me so much that I finally called him out on ordering you to kill Dennis. And he told me that 'he was trying to help me.'"

Sev and Dennis looked at each other, and then at Malak. "How the fuck exactly is one dead brother and one traumatized brother, or two dead brothers, helping you?" Sev snapped.

"Oh, he says my love for my family is my greatest weakness." Malak took a large sip of his champagne, and then he gave a lazy, mischievous grin. "So I told him since he has so little regard for family, he won't mind that I did his mom."

Leia almost choked on her champagne.

"He reacted about how you'd expect." Malak knocked the rest of his champagne back. "If the First Order doesn't already have a budget for consoles destroyed by Kylo's temper tantrums, it'll need one following this afternoon, I'm sure."

"I'm surprised that anyone thinks someone so out of control would make a competent military leader, let alone a competent government leader," Dooku scoffed.

"Well, the First Order recruits mostly young people who don't know any better." Malak shook his head. "We're gonna be thirty in a matter of days and I was considered 'the old man' by most of the Finalizer crew, whose average age was nineteen."

Dooku gave a derisive snort. "I had better judgment at that age." He rolled his eyes. "Kids these days."

Sev snickered. "Yeah, they better stay off our lawn." He patted Dooku's knee.

Dooku bitchfaced at Sev, and Sev grinned and kissed the tip of Dooku's nose. "I love you, Grumpy," Sev said, skritching Dooku's beard.

"And in fairness to those kids," Malak said, "there was a time I was willing to look past Kylo's flaws. I truly believed in him." He sighed. "Not so much anymore."

"No offense, I'm surprised you still believed even after you started remembering your past life as Malak, and all the shit Revan did to you, Dark Side or Light Side." Ben pursed his lips. "Like cutting off your jaw."

"Well..." Malak started on his second glass of champagne. "The moral of the story is, if you cut off your best friend's jaw, he might just reincarnate and eat out your mom."

Leia spat her drink, doubled over laughing. "Goddammit, Malak."

When the speeder limo arrived at Dooku's estate, Reine and Neryt decided they wanted to visit for awhile, and Han invited Ben to smoke a bowl with him. Malak and Dennis walked Leia to her villa, and they lingered at the door. Dennis kissed Leia goodnight, and after they held each other for a moment, Malak put his arms around both of them.

Leia looked up at Malak, and he picked her up to give her a soft, sweet kiss. When Malak put Leia down, he stroked her hair and face.

"I don't want you to think my interest in you is solely to get back at Kylo," Malak told her. "That's not why." He grinned. "It's just an added bonus."

Leia gestured for them to come inside. She made tea, and after it was ready and she joined them at the table, Malak said to her, "I remember back in the day... Meetra Surik was my first love." He took Dennis's hand in one hand, and Leia's hand in the other. "Both Meetras." He squeezed their hands.

"I remember," Leia said, nodding. "We were young and dumb... but very much in love."

"And that was then, this is now," Malak said, "but some of those old feelings still bleed over... joined by new feelings. I admire you a lot, Leia. Honestly, you should be in charge of the Commonwealth Armed Forces."

"We already went over this," Leia said. "I don't want to be Chancellor, or whatever title you decide on the head of state being, when we take Coruscant and the Commonwealth replaces the New Republic. Neither does Dooku. The best candidate for the head of state is going to be the head of the military. You've had experience with being the second of command in the First Order, and this is not counting your prior experience as Malak... and Alek the Jedi General, who became Malak."

Malak nodded. "I just want you to know that I respect you. My attraction to you isn't just physical - you're a beautiful woman, but you're also a beautiful woman who can kick my ass, and I like that." Malak smiled. "I always liked that about you." His voice dropped. "Loved that about you. Still do."

Overcome by emotion, Leia got up from her chair, came over to Malak, and kissed him hard. Before they knew what was happening, Malak and Leia were undressing, and Dennis was helping them. Malak found himself pushing Leia back on the table, dropping to his knees on the duranoleum floor, diving in and lapping and sucking at her like she was a ripe, delicious piece of fruit. Dennis climbed on the table and he and Leia made out, Leia stroking his cock as they kissed again and again.

After Malak brought Leia to climax with his tongue, he came up and kissed Dennis, getting Leia worked up all over again as she watched the brothers sensually rubbing their tongues together, sharing her juices between them. Then Malak kissed Leia, and then Dennis and Leia kissed, and then Malak and Dennis kissed, licked, and nibbled Leia's neck and shoulders, their hands exploring her body, caressing, teasing, building her arousal higher. When Malak and Dennis each drew a nipple into their mouths, suckling hungrily, Leia cradled their heads, moaning; she cried out when their fingers trailed lower, Malak's fingers finding her clit, Dennis's fingers slipping inside her. Just before she could come a second time, Dennis and Malak kissed back up her neck, took turns kissing her, then each other, and then Malak began kissing Dennis's neck, kissing his way down Dennis's throat and collarbone... and Malak guided Leia's head to Dennis's hairy chest. Dennis made the most delicious noises as Malak and Leia sucked both his nipples at the same time. He arched to them, his cries louder when Malak's fingers played with his prostate, their tongues lapping his nipples before their lips suckled again.

"Fuck," Dennis gasped.

When it got to be too much, Dennis grabbed Leia's head and kissed her hard and hungry, both of them moaning "mmmmmmm" into the kiss. Dennis lay on his back, and pulled Leia on top of him. Leia's hands played over Dennis's body, fingers lingering at the swollen, aching nipples, as Dennis guided his cock to Leia's drenched cunt. Leia cried out when Dennis filled her, and they rested for a moment, savoring that first exquisite moment of connection. Then Leia began to ride, slowly.

Leia felt Malak's arms encircle her from behind, his muscular torso against her back. His hands cupped her breasts, and she lifted up her arms and wrapped them around his neck.

Malak shot her a mental image in the Force, and when she let him know she liked that idea, he began to push into her from behind. It was a tight fit, with Dennis's cock in there, and the three lovers took a moment to rest and get adjusted before Leia resumed her slow ride.

Leia loved not just the intense pressure and friction from the two cocks inside of her, but knowing the brothers weren't just fucking her, but each other, cock rubbing cock in her cunt. Her very wet cunt, dripping juices over their balls. Dennis's fingers worked Leia's clit as Malak played with her nipples from behind. Leia kept one arm wrapped around Malak and brought the other to stroke Dennis's face, lost in the look of love in his grey eyes.

The three lovers kept the pace slow and sensual for as long as they could, savoring every moment of connection, feeling each other's pleasure and excitement in the Force, teasing and edging, building the arousal into frenzied, trembling need. At last Leia rode hard, and Malak responded by matching her pace, their hips slapping together. Dennis bucked underneath Leia, working his hips as Leia worked hers harder and harder. The sight of Leia's bouncing breasts drove Dennis crazy, and he leaned up to take her nipple into his mouth, licked it fast and hard before suckling it some more. Leia clutched Dennis's head, grabbed his hair, moaning loud as his lips and tongue worked their magic on her tits.

"Fuck, I fucking want you," Dennis rasped. Then he reached out to caress Malak's hip with his free hand. "Both of you."

Malak groaned, and fucked even harder, making Dennis gasp. Their balls were slapping together now, and the sensation of their balls fucking drove the two brothers into furious heat, so close to that explosion but never wanting to stop, wanting, needing to fuck -

-until Leia climaxed, the strangled sob and contractions of her cunt setting off their orgasm, cock spraying cock with cum. Leia's orgasm intensified at the feeling of the two cocks coming inside her, knowing they were coming on each other, knowing how much the incestuous brothers loved coming this way.

A few minutes later Leia found herself wrapped in Dennis's arms, still shaking from the world-rocking release. She could feel their cum leaking out of her, and she laughed, making it shoot out of her a little.

Malak picked Leia up and carried her to the bedroom, with Dennis staggering along beside them. They climbed on the bed together and Malak and Dennis held Leia between them. Leia and Dennis both remembered when they were Meetra Surik, carrying on a forbidden relationship with Alek when they were Jedi, before he became Darth Malak, and how they would hold each other like this after sex. How they felt safe in his arms.

Kylo Ren was out there, and they were going to war, but "Revan won't take me away from you again," Malak promised them. "Not this time."

_

Sev and Dooku went back to Dooku's study, where Dooku checked his holomail and spent some time replying, as Sev sketched on a tablet. After about an hour, Dooku was caught up; Sev was so engrossed in his sketching that he dropped his pen when Dooku loomed over him.

"You know," Dooku said to him, "all this time we've been together, sometimes I see you drawing but you've never shown me."

Sev frowned. "It's not very good."

"I'd like to see it anyway."

Sev handed the tablet to Dooku. Tonight, Sev had been sketching Dooku sitting at his desk, and the sketch was in fact very good - very realistic. Dooku was impressed. "You're quite talented," Dooku told him.

"I've gotten a bit of practice drawing you," Sev said. He leaned in, tapped a few buttons on the tablet, and produced the gallery. Dooku sat next to Sev on the couch and went through the pictures - approximately two thirds of them were of Dooku. A few had been colored in with a paint program - there was one in particular, of Dooku sleeping, which looked like it had been done in chalk pastels, and there was a glowing effect around him evocative of dreams or meditation. Dooku was also snuggling Teffi in this portrait.

"You looked so sweet and beautiful I had to capture it somehow," Sev said.

Dooku kissed Sev.

The other third of Sev's gallery was mostly nature, but there were a few portraits of Sev's brothers, and, finally, a self-portrait of Sev himself, as a weeping angel, done in somber dark hues. Dooku knew that Sev's playful, silly exterior hid depth and a great deal of pain - Sev had been through a lot in his life - but here was the irrefutable proof of this, a window to that secret self he didn't show others. Dooku felt a twinging ache, and he pulled Sev close, kissing the top of his head. "I love you," Dooku said.

"I know." Sev buried his face in Dooku's shoulder for a moment, drinking in the touch... and the feelings radiating through that touch. The understanding, one tormented, melancholy soul to another.

"Sweetheart... would you like me to set you up a studio? I can fund supplies so you can work with any artistic medium you want -"

Sev's response was to kiss Dooku passionately, and when they needed to come up for air, Sev nodded enthusiastically.

"If you'd shown me sooner, I would have already set something up for you." Dooku shook his head, continuing to go through the gallery. "I can't believe how good these are."

"I started drawing when I was a kid," Sev said. "I thought about going to art school for awhile but my aunt and uncle said that was a stupid idea. Obviously, I went into medicine, but I never stopped drawing."

"It makes sense that someone who can perform surgery can also make photorealistic sketches," Dooku observed.

"Well, anyway..." Sev was blushing, for once, which Dooku found adorable. Sev squeezed Dooku's knee. "You didn't talk about it over dinner, so I'll ask here since you've gotten a bit of holomail since then - how did our first day go? Any reactions to the CIS charter?"

Dooku took a deep breath. "We have two hundred seventy four requests for membership."

Sev let out a low whistle. "Seriously."

"Yes."

"That's just our first day."

Dooku pulled Sev to his feet, and they walked over to the war table. "The requests aren't approved automatically, of course, but should they be found suitable -" Dooku pressed a button on the table. Sev watched as two hundred seventy-four blue lights twinkled across the grid - most of those in the Outer Rim, with some in the Mid-Rim - and new Commonwealth tokens popped up into place. "It's a decent portion of the Galaxy."

"Holy shit, yes, it is."

"But." Dooku frowned, and sighed. He gestured to the rest of the map. "We have to assume that anyone who is not with us, is an enemy. And that means we are quite literally surrounded and outnumbered by enemies. Not just here, but in the Unknown Regions." He gestured to the expanse of space that was not mapped, but had a First Order token shaped like a wall on its border. Dooku folded his arms. "There is no turning back now, and yet... we are in over our heads."

Sev put his hand on Dooku's shoulder. "It's not like we can just sit here and think Kylo Ren will go away and leave us alone if we do nothing. You said it yourself - you're not just doing this to save the Galaxy, you're doing this to protect your family."

Dooku nodded. "We don't have a choice, no. But I have to wonder if we've played right into his hand. He did tell Malak that he was going to push Malak away and make him the enemy. He may have been engineering this since before he came to the New Force Order, knowing my history with the Clone Wars."

"Oh, I know Kylo intended for you to start CIS again, and for Malak to join it. He knows that'll interest the New Republic, and he thinks the First Order can take over while you and the New Republic fight. But already, at least twice, his plans have been thrown a curveball. First of all, Dennis and I are both still alive. Kylo intended for at least one of us to die, and considering what we saw Dennis do at his wedding on Mandalore, not even trying, I think it's safe to say if Kylo knew even a little of what the Exile is capable of, it scares the shit out of him. Second of all, Malak's relationship with Kylo's mother and father. He didn't know that pushing his best friend away would be pushing him right into their arms." Sev put his hands on his hips. "If I'm going to embrace this Seven Light thing, my troll-of-War instincts are telling me that we will win this war doing things Kylo doesn't expect. Kylo tends to be overconfident - he thinks he has it all figured out. He really does not respond well when things don't go his way. So the more we can use his own plans against him, the more he'll lose control and it'll create a cascade effect where he does increasingly stupid and desperate things to try to keep control, and fails because his judgment is so blinded by his tantrums."

"Yes, good."

Dooku turned to Sev, and took his hands. Sev squeezed them. "The Force fights with us," Sev said. "I may not believe in much, but I believe in that. It brought you back. It brought us back together. We're here, doing this, for a reason."

Dooku kissed Sev's hands.

"And now," Sev said, "my troll-of-War instincts tell me that all work and no play isn't good for you. So let me give you something better to think about."

Sev began undressing.

At last Sev stood before him, clad only in a pair of dark royal blue satin panties, trimmed with a scalloped edge, with blue garters and sheer black stockings. The sight took Dooku's breath away, and Sev smiled as he watched the bulge in Dooku's trousers.

"Fuck," was all Dooku could say.

"Yes," Sev husked, moving in to kiss his bondmate, his hand roaming to the hard bulge, rubbing it slowly. "That is what I want."

Dooku kissed Sev hard, and then he too began to undress. Sev was a little surprised - he'd expected Dooku to pick him up and carry them to their bedroom... but the readiness, neediness, made Sev's cock ache for release even more. Sev squealed when Dooku picked him up and shoved him back onto the war table, knocking over the tokens.

"Idis," Sev laughed. "You made such a fuss when Neryt and I knocked these over -"

"I don't fucking care. I want you NOW." With that, Dooku climbed onto the table, climbing over Sev, and kissed him again as he propped Sev's stocking-clad right leg on his shoulder. A moment later, Sev's panties were off, Dooku was lubed and pushing into Sev's channel, as Sev dug his nails in Dooku's back, whimpering.

"Yes." Sev shuddered when he felt Dooku all the way inside him. "Oh, fuck, yes..."

There was none of Dooku's usual finesse, building up slowly. He let Sev have it, pounding into him with such wild abandon that Sev was almost afraid the table would collapse underneath them, even though it was made of sturdy marble. Dooku growled as he bit Sev's shoulder, working Sev's cock in his hand in the hard, furious rhythm of his thrusts. Sev's nails raked Dooku's back as Sev howled and whimpered, trembling, loving being taken this way, fucked this way.

"Want you," Dooku rasped, in between kisses of Sev's neck.

"Oh, Idis, I want you so fucking bad..."

Their foreheads pressed together, and their mouths almost met, panting, gasping, breathing each other's breath. Their eyes met, then, and Sev kissed Dooku softly, sweetly, in contrast to the merciless animal fucking.

They came together, squeezing each other's hands, moaning, almost sobbing into the kiss. Sev's arms wrapped tight around Dooku as his hips bucked once, twice, three times, spending, shuddering.

When the delicious orgasm subsided, giving way to floaty bliss, Dooku stroked Sev's face and whispered, "I am going to make the Galaxy safe... for us. You have been through so much pain. I can't fix your past, but I want to give you a future." He kissed Sev. "I want to give you everything."

Sev broke down crying. Dooku kissed his tears, his own eyes burning with tears unshed, until their eyes met again, and Sev saw those dark eyes too bright, and stroked Dooku's face. "You take care of everybody," Sev husked. "I want to take care of you."

Dooku nuzzled Sev and kissed him hard, letting his tears flow. They kissed again and again, through their tears, until the passion of their kisses took over, stirring their cocks back to readiness. Sev propped both his legs on Dooku's shoulders, working his hips slowly; Dooku found himself thrusting slowly, much more slow and sensual than before, his hands roaming, wanting to touch Sev everywhere. Needing to feel.

"I will give you the Galaxy," Dooku said. "Anywhere you want to go. Anything you want to do. Once it's safe. Safe so nobody can hurt you again."

"Fuck the Galaxy. I want you more than anything else." Sev kissed his bondmate. "Take me."

Dooku began moving faster inside him, but not as fast as before - he still kept the pace moderate, wanting to savor the feeling of Sev wrapped around him... the feeling of Sev's pleasure as he hit that spot over and over again, making Sev breathless and trembling with exquisite sensation, overwhelming hunger.

And then Sev's nails were in his back again, Sev's moans of "fuck me" impossible to resist. Dooku gave in, hammering Sev even harder than before, Sev keening wordlessly as his hips bucked, matching Dooku's rhythm. The delicious sight of Sev stroking his cock brought Dooku close to that edge, and when Sev began to shoot, spouting over Dooku's torso, Dooku let go, coming with a triumphant cry, one that made Sev whimper as his lust triggered another wave of pleasure.

They held each other, and when Sev could make words again, he said, "Dude, we need to get off this table."

Dooku chuckled. "I'd apologize for your discomfort, but -"

"I'm not sorry, either." Sev grinned.

Dooku helped Sev off the table, and they made their way to their bedroom suite, naked. Once there, Dooku picked up Sev and carried him, with Sev's arms wrapped around his neck.

"We're getting married tomorrow," Sev said. "I can't fucking believe it."

"Yes." Dooku kissed him.

"I'd say we should get some rest..." Sev grinned. "But I could go for another round."

"Ceremony's not till the afternoon. We can sleep in." Dooku put Sev on the bed, and then pounced on him with a growl, making Sev giggle, and then cry out as he was taken once more.

_

The wedding was taking place at the capitol building in Carannia. Sifo and Jocasta were also getting married, and having their ceremony first; while Qui-Gon was the Singer of Serenno and performing weddings was among his duties, Dooku had said back on Arcturus he wanted to perform their wedding, and that was what he intended to do.

Dooku and Sev wore the same outfits they had worn to Dooku's coronation ceremony - black tunics and black trousers, with Sev in a brown vest and black-and-brown cape, Dooku in his usual brown cape, with a light touch of blue and brown embroidery at the neck and hems of his shirt.

Dooku produced the wedding rings of Arren Kae and General Ren-Yan Yusanis, brought back from the Yusanis Memorial at Eshan. He put them on a small brown pillow, trimmed with blue. Sev's eyes watered when he saw the rings. "Shit," he said.

Dooku took Sev's hand in his. "Let's go get married."

Jocasta and Sifo greeted them with big hugs at the capitol building. Sifo-Dyas was wearing an outfit similar to Sev and Dooku's but with a purple cape and purple trim on his black shirt, and Jocasta looked radiant in an ice blue lace gown that hugged her curves all the right ways and showed just a little bit of cleavage. Dangling between her breasts was a blue Serennian diamond, which Sifo had given her as an engagement present. Her hair was also down, styled in loose curls.

There was an auditorium at the capitol building for official state functions, which did not happen often as the Serenni were not a people given to such ostentatious displays as a rule. The auditorium was packed with Sev and Dooku's large family of choice, as well as Serenni nobles and heads of state and other key figures of the D'Astan Sector, as well as many soldiers from the Resistance base. All of the Commonwealth military officers were in dress uniform, including Leia, who stepped out from the audience to give her adopted father a warm hug.

Dooku walked Sifo and Jocasta down the aisle, and then stood at the podium. "We are witnesses to the union of this man and this woman in marriage," Dooku said. "But not simply a legal and ethical contract - they are taking a lifebond vow to each other, a holy and solemn vow of the ancient Je'daii."

Sifo dropped to one knee and took Jocasta's hand in his. "I remember when I first saw you," Sifo said. "You were nineteen, and I was fourteen. I thought you were the most beautiful girl I'd ever seen, and you thought I was some dumb kid. A few years later, Idis re-introduced us, and we hit it off, and I was thrilled when you were willing to take a chance and defy the Jedi Council to be with me." He kissed Jocasta's hand. "Over the decades, my love for you has grown. We are finally doing what we've wanted to do since we were in our twenties, and couldn't because of the Jedi Order. The Jedi would condemn us, say we were spitting on the Force - but we know better. It was the Force that brought us together. The Force flows through us the most strongly when we love each other. Your love for me made me a better Jedi, when I was one, made me care about making a difference, because it helped me to understand the people we were helping were truly people, with loved ones, with lives they had built. I am not a Jedi anymore, but I still serve the Force... and I serve the Force in honor of my lady, my beautiful Force goddess."

There was applause from the audience, moved by Sifo's words of love. Jocasta looked on the verge of tears, but she composed herself.

It was Jocasta's turn to speak. "One of the reasons why I fell in love with you was because yes, you were a good Jedi... an honorable man... but you weren't quite in step with the Order. There was always something wild about you. Something... dark. It excited me." She grinned. "It still does."

Sifo growled, and some of the audience laughed. Dooku rolled his eyes, but allowed himself a small smile.

"Our relationship was secret, and it was a secret that caused us pain, wanting to shout our love from the rooftops..." Jocasta squeezed Sifo's hand. "But it was also our little refuge from the madness of the Galaxy... the chaos that the Jedi Order continually threw us into. Only a very few people knew about our relationship - Idis being one of them - and that also gave us a bit of freedom. I could let loose with you. In the secret place of our relationship, you helped me push past some of the stifling limits of Jedi conditioning and feel more human. More animal. And that is where the Living Force dwells, like a seed planted in soil, growing tall away from those who would cut it down as soon as it bursts forth." She pulled Sifo to his feet, and stroked his face. "To quote a famous poet, 'I love you as certain dark things are to be loved, in secret, between the shadow and the soul.'"

Sifo sniffled, and then he said, "OK, who's cutting onions in here?"

He and Jocasta laughed, and embraced, and then they turned to Dooku, who nodded. Dooku spoke, "If there are any who have an objection to this vow being made, speak now, or forever hold your peace."

Nobody objected.

Dooku took Qui-Gon's antler-hilt knife, and cut his finger with it, dripping blood onto an unlit candle. "As the oath-brother of these uniting themselves, I give my blessing, and I bear witness to their sacred vow." He lit the candle, and a few red sparks leapt from the flame - Dooku's Force energy.

A Sith ritual mirror was on the podium where the candle had been lit. Sifo took the knife and cleaned it, and then he cut his hand, and Jocasta's, and they let their blood drip onto the ritual mirror. The entire room darkened, and Sifo and Jocasta glowed with a soft white light. The two spoke the ancient Je'daii lifebond vow in unison:

Today I commit to my lover as my partner,
each of us part of a greater whole.
In the eyes of the Force, we are one.
Where they go, I will follow,
in heart and in mind,
in sickness and in health,
in pain and in pleasure,
in weakness and in strength,
in life and in death.
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge,
knowing and being known, completely,
in love eternal and immortal in the Force.

Sifo and Jocasta clasped hands, and a cord of bright blue light wrapped around their hands, and a circle of bright blue fire enveloped them before dying down to create a blue aura around each of them, that shimmered and faded away as the lifebond took.

They kissed, at last, and there was a standing ovation.

Sifo and Jocasta stepped aside, and Severin rose from the back row of the audience. Han Solo walked him down the aisle, while Yoda stepped beside Dooku. Qui-Gon came forth, to perform the wedding ceremony; Dooku handed him back his antler-hilt knife.

Qui-Gon cleared his throat, and said, "We have come to witness the sacred union of General Severin Yusanis and High Justice Idis Dooku. They, too, are taking a lifebond vow."

Sev looked into Dooku's eyes. "You are my hero. I admire and respect you so much. Your idealism. Your passion for justice. The way that you cared enough about the suffering in the Galaxy, and the failings of the Republic, that you were willing to be vilified in history to make things right. The way that you got up again, in recent times, after failing and losing... hope still burning. You've taught me how to fight back... and I fight not just for your cause, but for you." He kissed Dooku's hand, and pressed it to his heart. "I will be your champion. I do not have material things to give the man who has everything... but I will give you war and revolution. I will give you fire and blood."

Dooku stroked Sev's curls and whiskers, and then he said, "My hope still burns because you are my fire. You are my light."

It was not an ornate, flowery speech, from the man who had spent so much of the last years of his life as a compelling public speaker - it was simple and elegant, saying a great deal in just a few words. Sev could feel the weight of those words, bringing tears to his eyes, flutters to his heart.

They looked at Qui-Gon, and Qui said, "If there are any who have an objection to this vow being made, speak now, or forever hold your peace."

The auditorium doors swung open with a bang. Two hooded, robed figures stepped through the doors, causing a collective gasp.

Chapter Text

The two robed figures took down their hoods.

"Rey!" Finn ran down the aisle, Poe close behind him. Sev, Dooku, and the wedding guests watched as Finn and Poe threw their arms around a slim, pale young lady with long, dark hair, who laughed and cried as she hugged them.

"...Luke?" Leia got up slowly. She took a minute to look at her brother, with nape-length wavy grey hair, a scruffy grey beard... and then she also ran to him, holding him tight.

Leia practically shoved Luke down the aisle, an amusing sight since Luke had a foot on her. Luke and Han just looked at each other for a minute, and then Luke and Han squeezed each other, crying.

When Luke and Han pulled apart, Leia cleared her throat and turned to Dooku. "Dad, this is my twin brother, Luke Skywalker." Leia turned to Luke. "Luke, this is my adopted father, Count Idis Dooku, aka..."

"...Darth Tyranus." Luke put out his hand.

Dooku shook it, and then he bitchfaced. "Must you Skywalkers make such a dramatic entrance everywhere you go?"

From the audience, Ben snickered. Dooku glared daggers at Ben, and Ben laughed harder.

Luke said, "I just arrived on Serenno this morning. I got in touch with the Resistance and they told me to come here." Luke shook his head. "I see you're in the middle of something."

"Quite." Dooku folded his arms.

"We'll do the rest of the introductions and some explanations later," Leia said, ushering Luke to a seat next to hers.

Dooku and Sev looked at Qui-Gon, who was also snickering now; this set off Sev, giggling uncontrollably, and when Dooku bitchfaced at his bondmate, Sev blew an air kiss and winked at him. Dooku made an exaggerated sigh, rolled his eyes, and then he also gave into soft laughter.

"Are we ready?" Dooku said, once he and his bondmate calmed down.

Qui-Gon handed Dooku the ritual knife. Dooku he cut his hand, and Severin's, and they let their blood drip onto the ritual mirror. Once again, the auditorium grew dark, and Sev and Dooku glowed... but with a soft red light. The two recited the ancient Je'daii lifebond vow, together:

Today I commit to my lover as my partner,
each of us part of a greater whole.
In the eyes of the Force, we are one.
Where they go, I will follow,
in heart and in mind,
in sickness and in health,
in pain and in pleasure,
in weakness and in strength,
in life and in death.
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge,
knowing and being known, completely,
in love eternal and immortal in the Force.

Yoda produced the pillow that Dooku had placed the rings on. Dooku put Arren Kae's wedding ring on Severin's ring finger, and Sev put General Yusanis's wedding ring on Dooku's finger. Then Dooku pulled an item from his pocket - an eternity collar, chainmaille, the O-ring encrusted with small Serennian diamonds. Sev gasped at how pretty it was, the sparkle of the diamonds intensified in the red glow around them. Sev knelt before Dooku, and he took off the collar Sev had been wearing for the last few months and draped the eternity collar around his neck, clasping it shut. "You are mine, now and forever," Dooku told him. "Mine to protect. Mine to treasure."

Sev kissed Dooku's hand, and then he got up. They clasped the hands that had been cut - the hands now wearing wedding rings - and a cord of bright violet light wrapped around their hands. A circle of violet flame enveloped them before dying down to create a violet aura around each of them, and then the darkness in the room faded away and so did the violet auras. Sev could feel Dooku's presence in the Force even more strongly than before, like it was attached to him somehow.

"I now pronounce you lifemates," Qui-Gon said. He gestured. "Go on, kiss."

Dooku crushed Sev's mouth to his, kissing him like they were the only two people in the room... the only two people in the Galaxy. Sev moaned, his cock stirring at the passionate sensuality of the deep, hungry kiss, the way their tongues played together like the way their cocks would play together later. Dooku's hands reached down to cup Sev's ass, and then he gave it a playful swat, making Sev giggle, before Sev kissed him back, this time making Dooku moan into the kiss, wanting nothing more than to throw Sev down on the floor and take him right then and there.

When they pulled apart, they were surrounded by their family, and spent the next while being hugged many, many times over.

And then Sifo said, "I heard a rumor there's a banquet reception down the hall."

"You heard correctly," Dooku replied, smiling. "Let us celebrate."

_

The wedding reception had a large banquet area with several tables of appetizers and desserts - including an entire table just of different varieties of pudding.

"That is a lot of pudding," Sev said.

"That is two hundred and forty credits worth of pudding," Dooku informed him.

Sev raised an eyebrow. "Two hundred forty credits worth of pudding."

Dooku nodded.

"Aww yeahh." Then Sev teased, "Idis, where did you get two hundred forty credits from?" It was scarcely a drop in the bucket for the Count of Serenno.

Dooku put his index finger to his lips with a small, cryptic smile. "Shhhh..." He handwaved. "It's not your concern."

"I'll just be over here minding my own."

There was also a large, multi-tiered wedding cake. Sifo and Dooku looked at each other, and then Sifo gestured to Dooku to do the honors of cutting it. Dooku took out his lightsaber, activated it with a hiss, gave the Makashi salute to the audience, and cut the cake with it.

"And you say Skywalkers are dramatic," Sev said.

Dooku responded by literally shoving cake into Sev's face, stuffing his mouth with a large enough piece that it made a bit of a mess. Sev laughed through the cake mess, and then gave a giggly moan as Dooku said, "To hell with aristocratic dignity," and licked cake and frosting from the sides of Sev's mouth and his chin.

Irina made gag noises. Dooku grinned at his sister, and she grinned back. Dooku cut a couple of small pieces of cake before turning off his lightsaber, and wrapped them up. "For later," he said.

"Please don't tell me you're using that cake as lube," Irina said.

"What?" Mace raised his eyebrows.

Irina smirked at Mace. "I have very interesting holovids-"[1]

Dooku bitchfaced at Irina as hard as he'd ever bitchfaced, and she cracked up laughing. Then she brought Mace over, and Mace squared his shoulders and cleared his throat, giving the newlyweds a deadly serious look.

"I thought I'd tell you first," Mace said. "I asked Irina to marry me."

"Good." Dooku smiled. "Now I don't have to kill you."

"We're going to tell Sifo and Jocasta," Irina said.

"So..." Sev spoke up. "Mace knows...?"

Mace grinned, nodding. "I encourage it."

"That's a relief." Sev smiled. "I'm happy for all of you."

Finn, Poe, and Rey came over, with Leia, Han, and Luke... Yoda was riding piggyback on Luke's shoulders, which made Dooku shake his head at the sight of it.

"You too?" Dooku asked Luke.

"I take it you have padawan stories," Luke said.

"I have padawan novels." Dooku smiled. He gave Yoda a mock glare. "Does it look like Luke came all the way here just to carry you around?"

"...Yes." Yoda beamed.

Finn cleared his throat, and everyone turned to him. "Everyone, this is Rey, my girlfriend."

"Our girlfriend." Poe grinned, and kissed Rey's cheek, making her blush.

"Rey, that's Count Dooku, his husband General Severin Yusanis... Dooku's sister Irina, and my grandfather, Mace Windu."

Mace shook Rey's hand. "It's a pleasure to meet you."

"Rey's my apprentice," Luke explained.

"So she's a Jedi," Dooku said.

"No. She's not a Jedi." Luke squared his shoulders. "She's a Je'daii."

Dooku's eyebrows went up. So did Sev's.

"That would explain why you didn't bristle at my being a Sith Lord," Dooku said.

Luke nodded. "After what happened with the New Jedi Order, I went to Ahch-To, seeking the first Jedi Temple. That search took me further out... to a place called Tython. I took Rey there with me."

"I was tasked by Leia to find Luke and bring him back home," Rey said. "He wasn't ready yet."

"We need to talk further about this," Luke said, "and very soon - timing is of the essence with something you need to see - but not tonight. I will let you enjoy your wedding night." He looked at Han, who gave him a little smile. "And I have some catching up to do with my sister and her husband."

"Oh, myyyyyy." Sev smirked, and Dooku elbowed him.

Luke's eyebrows went up now, and Leia simply said, "They know."

Luke blushed, and Leia laughed, and Yoda leapt off of Luke's shoulders and onto Dooku's. The exaggerated overreaction from Yoda made everyone laugh, and Chewbacca walked over to pass Yoda a full shot glass, which Yoda knocked back and handed right back to him for a refill.

"Come, come now, Father," Dooku said, "considering how much we know of your own personal life..."

Yoda began singing wordlessly over Dooku, very loudly.

Then suddenly, Obi-Wan leapt behind Luke, like a pouncing cat, put him in a headlock, and gave him a noogie. When Luke wrestled out of it, it was the sight of Obi-Wan that finally broke the dam. Luke started to cry. Han and Leia held him, and Dooku brought Yoda back over, so Yoda and Obi-Wan could also hug Luke.

"We're all together again," Leia said. "You've come home. To your family."

Yoda pulled out a handkerchief from his pants pocket and began to wipe Luke's face.

"We don't know where that hanky's been, Yoda," Sev teased.

Luke made Wookiee noises.

_

Dooku and Sev went back to their suite at the palace when the wedding reception was over - they could have stayed at a five-star hotel in Carannia, but they had missed their cats while they were away, and their suite was just as luxurious. Dooku and Sev started off their wedding night by sitting in the hot tub together, cuddling and drinking champagne.

When they each finished their glass of champagne, Dooku leaned in to kiss Sev. After some minutes of passionate, sensual kissing, groping underneath the water, Dooku picked Sev up, and carried him out of the hot tub, to their bed.

"We still have a little bubbly left in the bottle," Sev said. He used the Force to pour them each another glass of champagne, and then he lifted his glass. "To married life."

"To my lifemate. What the Force has given to me, let no one, nothing, take away." Dooku clinked glasses with Sev.

Sev took a sip, and then he kissed Dooku, and as they kissed, Sev spilled champagne on Dooku's shoulder. Dooku raised an eyebrow, amusement in his eyes as Sev cleaned the drops with his tongue, licking from the shoulder down to the chest - over the nipple, making Dooku close his eyes and groan.

"Mmmmm." Sev drew the nipple into his mouth, and then laved it a little more with his tongue, encouraged by Dooku's sigh of contented pleasure. "So good." Sev deliberately dripped champagne from his glass now, chasing it with his tongue, to lap at the champagne-soaked nipple some more. Then he dripped champagne on the other side of Dooku's chest, making Dooku arch to him, fist grabbing his curls, making a sound that was a combination moan and growl. Sev loved it, already half-hard cock standing at full attention.

Sev came up to kiss Dooku and he said, "That's good... you know what it would pair well with?"

Dooku watched as Sev retrieved the cake he'd saved from the wedding reception, unwrapped it... and then Sev smashed the first piece into Dooku's face. Dooku bitchfaced, dark eyes glaring through a face full of white cake. Sev giggled and then leaned in to lick cake from Dooku's forehead. Dooku didn't even know that was an erogenous area, but it very much was, and his moans encouraged Sev, who continued licking even when Dooku's forehead was clean.

Sev continued licking cake off the rest of Dooku's face, and his beard, his tongue deliberate and sensual. Dooku couldn't believe how good Sev's tongue felt, and there was something animal about the act that turned him on, as well as an added layer of intimacy. "Your wrinkles add character," Sev husked. "I'd rather be with you than someone my age." He stroked Dooku's face and his whiskers, love shining in his green eyes.

Dooku kissed him, a soft, sweet, lingering kiss that made Sev's cock even harder, leaking precum now... and they hadn't even gotten started yet.

Sev took the next piece of cake, broke it in half, and then he mashed it onto Dooku's chest, and began eating it off his bondmate... licking the frosting and crumbs from chest hair and exposed skin. The sensuality of Sev's tongue, especially when Sev took teasing licks at his nipples, left Dooku panting, arching to him. Sev smiled, seeing Dooku's cock leaking also, looking almost angry in its need. Sev slid down to take a few licks at the head of Dooku's cock, making a show of collecting the precum with his tongue, before taking Dooku's cock into his mouth, giving Dooku a sultry look through heavy eyes. And then after a moment of sucking, Sev gave a few more licks, and came up, cackling. "Your turn."

Dooku took the rest of the leftover cake and made a mess with it over the length of Sev's torso - there were no bites of cake to be had, he could only lick the mush, and he did, so slowly that before he was even a quarter done, Sev was whimpering, his breath shaking as he clutched his husband's head.

"Please..." Sev moaned.

Dooku chuckled, and continued licking the cake from Sev's body, moving his tongue even more slowly than before. The mess went all the way down Sev's abs - Dooku thought those abs were a work of art - and Dooku traced their definition with his tongue, kissed and nibbled between licks. When Dooku nibbled at Sev's navel, it was all Sev could do to not come right then and there.

"Oh, fuck, please fucking fuck me." Sev was trembling, his cock leaking copiously.

"We still have champagne to finish." Dooku pointed to his glass, waiting on the bedtable, and then Sev watched as he used the Force to bring the champagne over... and used the Force to dump the champagne all over Sev's body. Licking champagne from Sev's body, more slow and deliberate strokes of his tongue. Some champagne had been poured on Sev's cock, and Dooku savored the taste of champagne mixed with Sev's precum, making such a show of enjoying himself that Sev dug his nails into Dooku's shoulder, writhing, howling.

"Fuck. Me. Now."

Dooku laughed. "Such a spoilt little brat. What about my fun, mmm?"

"Fuckkkkk..."

Dooku could see how tight Sev's balls were, and he dripped the last little bit of champagne in the glass onto Sev's balls, and then licked and sucked at Sev's balls for what seemed like an eternity. Sev had never been so pent-up for release before, not even when he was being disciplined. The keening noises Sev made would have been embarrassing if they were not so far gone in animal heat to not care.

After thoroughly tongue-bathing Sev's balls, Dooku lapped at that sensitive place between the balls and ass, Sev's cries getting louder, and louder still when Dooku dipped his tongue inside Sev's channel, tongue lashing the prostate, bringing Sev perilously close to that edge... and just dangling him there, teasing, tormenting, pleasing, exciting, making Sev crazy for him. He revelled in Sev's surrender, the wild passion that he loved so much. Dooku mused to himself that if he'd been sexually active in his Jedi years, he doubted he would have found a lover as passionate as Severin. Sev's wild animal frenzy was absolutely intoxicating to him.

It was building Dooku's own passion - at last he relented, needing to find release himself. He gave a few last slow, lingering licks at Sev's cock, before sliding up to kiss Sev so hungrily that Sev clawed his back again, with a growling whimper that made Dooku's cock throb and ache.

"Are you ready?" Dooku rasped.

Sev nodded. Then he grinned. "Just one more thing." He grabbed his champagne glass. "You missed a few drops." He stuck his fingers in the glass, wiping around the inside of it, and then he stuck his champagne-soaked index and middle fingers into Dooku's mouth. Dooku sucked just the tips first, then drew the entire length of Sev's fingers into his mouth, slowly, with such heat in his dark gaze that it made Sev shudder.

After Dooku had sucked Sev's fingers for a moment, he slowly let them slide out... and then he slowly, sensually licked the palm of Sev's hand, before kissing it tenderly. Sev groaned, deeply aroused as well as touched by the sweet, erotic act. Sev hadn't known his palms could be so sensitive, but oh, they were.

Dooku then did the same to Sev - he took his own champagne glass, collected the last drops onto his fingers, and watched with lust as Sev sucked his fingers like he sucked cock, a naughty look in Sev's eyes as he murmured "mmmmmm", sucking slowly. And then Sev, too, licked Dooku's palm, down to the wrist and back up, before kissing it.

Dooku took that same palm and found himself pressing it to Sev's throat, holding him down as he rubbed his cock against Sev's, using Sev's thick precum to slick his cock, before he pushed deep inside his bondmate.

"My husband." Dooku let out a sigh, and so did Sev. Dooku took the hand from Sev's throat, and clasped it in his, taking Sev's other hand and kissing it before squeezing it tight.

"I love you, Idis."

Dooku leaned down to kiss Sev deeply, both men groaning into the kiss. Sev wrapped his arms and legs around Dooku, taking him as fully as he could go, holding the elder man with all of him. Dooku sighed again before he kissed Sev's sensitive shoulder. "I love you," Dooku said. Their eyes met, and Dooku stroked Sev's face.

They kissed again.

Sev's hips rolled against Dooku's, in a slow, languid rhythm that was almost trance-like. In the Force, their energy entwined so completely that they could feel what the other was feeling - the sensation of penetrating and being penetrated... taking and being taken. Every touch was exquisite, every kiss carrying the weight of emotions stronger than love. The depth of their intimacy brought them close to that edge right away, but they held out as long as they could, keeping their fuck slow... wanting to stay in that perfect moment, to savor the pleasure, the tenderness, the joy of their connection, building into ecstasy.

But it was so good that they could only hold out so long. Trembling together, gasping for breath, Sev dug his nails into Dooku's back and cried, "Please."

Dooku responded by thrusting faster, harder - not as hard as he could go, not yet - but enough that it built their excitement into a frenzied, fever pitch. Sev raked his nails down Dooku's back, moaning "Yes, yes, yessss..."

Dooku growled into Sev's neck, and nipped. The way Sev arched his throat after that - an act of perfect trust, perfect submission - made Dooku's dark eyes glitter with lust that took Sev's breath away. Sev watched, trembling, as Dooku used the Force to produce his Sith ritual knife, and in an instant it was in the old Sith Lord's hand, the tip of the blade pressed against Sev's bared throat.

The tip of the blade dragged along Sev's sensitive neck, up and down - not enough to cause harm beyond a few nicks, a little blood... just enough to feel the stinging bite of the blade. Sev's nails raked Dooku's hips, Sev's hips bucking, urging Dooku on faster. Dooku's tongue followed the wake of the blade, tasting the metallic tang of Sev's blood, before claiming Sev's mouth with his, letting him taste his own blood.

"You trust me with your life," Dooku said, keeping the knife pressed just above Sev's collarbone.

"Yes."

"Your life is quite literally in my hands." Dooku began to Force choke Sev, just a little - just enough to cause a bit of discomfort, not enough to kill him.

Just enough to excite him. Sev whimpered, shuddering. "Please," Sev gasped out. "Fuck me harder..."

"That's it, my love. Give yourself to me." Dooku replaced the tip of the blade with his lips, a kiss that felt like being kissed by fire itself. Sev cried out, and Dooku laughed softly as he worked the tip of the blade down Sev's body - tracing around and over one nipple, down the chest to trace the definition in his perfect abs, then back up the other side of his chest, to tease the other nipple. Back to the neck. Dooku could feel little scratches over his torso, in the places where the knife was cutting Sev, and that just intensified his pleasure. As did the sight of Sev's torso wearing little tiny ribbons of blood where the knife had been -his tongue chased them, making Sev scream, nails making ribbons of blood down Dooku's own back. Dooku's pace picked up inside Sev, breathing harder.

The blade went for a second round over Sev's torso, cutting a bit harder - still not enough to do major harm, but enough for blood to drip over him. Dooku lapped the blood, and when his tongue laved Sev's nipples, he pulled them with his teeth before suckling hard. Sev gasped, raking Dooku yet again, hips bucking wildly underneath him. It was then that Dooku gave in to his passion, not holding back any longer, giving into the hot, needy animal fuck that he and Severin both craved.

Sev loved it, getting even more vocal, grabbing onto Dooku for dear life as Dooku pounded into him, the bed rocking against the wall, the deep grunts and groans of his basso joining Sev's whimpers and cries. And then they were kissing again, moaning into each passionate, hungry kiss. Dooku took Sev's cock into his hand, working it in the rhythm of his thrusts. Playing with Sev's long, thick, beautiful cock made Dooku lose control even more, hammering Sev harder, completely lost in lust for his husband. When Sev's hand covered Dooku's, they could feel themselves right about to fall off that edge, together.

"Love you," Sev said, between kisses.

"I love you, my own." Dooku's kisses trailed along Sev's jaw, to lick up the shell of his ear, to the pointy tip. The erogenous, deliciously sensitive pointy tip. "Mine," Dooku rasped into Sev's ear, before seizing the point between his teeth.

That set Sev off, at last, howling as his cock spurted over Dooku's hand, over Dooku's stomach. With a growl, Dooku pulled out of Sev, and Sev watched as Dooku aimed Sev's cock so the last few jets of Sev's cum coated Dooku's cock. Then Dooku pushed back into Sev and with one, two, three, hard jabs of his cock, his own climax hit him, spending deep into Sev's channel with a shuddery sigh.

Dooku pulled Sev close to him, both men trembling in the throes of their orgasm, sighing together happily as they kissed. Their palms pressed together, their fingers linked, and their noses nuzzled. With a soft brush of their lips, their eyes met, and the look of love in Dooku's eyes brought tears to Sev's own. He reached out to stroke Dooku's face, before kissing the tip of his nose.

Then Sev laughed. "Oh, fuck, that was hot."

"Yes, it was." Dooku kissed Sev again - a kiss that suggested he still had an appetite.

Sev smirked knowingly. "I loved watching my cock come all over your cock, before you fucked me with my cum on your cock." He nipped Dooku's lower lip and kissed him back, letting him know he too wanted seconds.

"I liked that too." Another kiss.

Sev responded by taking their cocks together in his fist - the two thick cocks just barely fit, and Sev's grip was vise-like, stroking them to readiness right away. Dooku groaned, feeling a frisson of anticipation down his spine.

"What do you want, milord?" Sev husked, before kissing Dooku again.

"You." Dooku's eyes met Sev's. "Turnabout is fair play..."

"You want me to fuck you?"

Dooku gave a little smile. "I want you inside me. I want to feel you."

Sev pushed Dooku onto his back and kissed him hard.

Sev spent what felt like an eternity kissing his way down Dooku's body, from his neck to his feet and back up again, bathing every inch of the old Sith Lord with his tongue, lingering when Dooku's moans got louder - his nipples, stomach, hips, inner thighs, and the insides of his knees were particularly sensitive, especially his inner thighs, which Sev nibbled on, enough that Dooku knew it was going to leave bruises there. Sev explored his body thoroughly before ever going anywhere near his cock... and when Sev at last took his first lick, Dooku almost came just from the buildup of pleasure and tension.

Dooku shivered at the way Sev looked at him as Sev swallowed down his cock, and shivered again when Sev reached down to gently cup and rub his balls. Sev sucked slowly, working his tongue as he suctioned, which felt incredible; the noises Dooku made went straight to Sev's own cock, already leaking again with lust for his husband. Sev brought Dooku to the edge of orgasm and then stopped, taking Dooku's cock out of his mouth to lick it, tongue-bathe it from the head down the shaft to the balls, licking and sucking the balls until Dooku arched to him... and then Sev pushed his index finger inside him, finding the prostate right away, rubbing in slow, lazy circles. Dooku's groan of pleasure, and the way Sev could feel the prostate rubbing in their Force bond, brought Sev close to the edge himself. Soon Sev added a second finger as he continued licking up and down Dooku's cock and balls... and at last Sev replaced fingers with his tongue, lapping Dooku's prostate until Dooku clutched the headboard, crying Sev's name. Sev's free hand went to stroke himself, not able to help it, so completely worked up by his husband's passion.

When Sev's mouth left Dooku's ass, Dooku made a little whimper of protest, and Sev chuckled, taking Dooku's cock back into his mouth. As Sev sucked, he used the Force to retrieve their vibrator and pushed it into Dooku's ass, readying him. Dooku's moans got even louder, the vibrator producing intense, exquisite pulses against the most intimate, sensitive part of him... enough that Sev could feel it too, even more excited. Just before Dooku could come like that, Sev took the vibrator out.

Then Sev teased Dooku by stroking himself as Dooku watched... stroking his cock slowly, making eye contact, biting his lower lip and groaning. "You want this cock?"

"I want all of you. But especially that, yes."

"This cock wants you." Sev collected precum onto his fingers, and then reached to stick his fingers in Dooku's mouth. Dooku sucked Sev's fingers, groaning at the taste of his bondmate. At the sight of Sev's cock leaking again, the feeling through their Force bond of Sev's cock throbbing with excitement - Sev loved the sight of Dooku sucking his precum off his fingers. After a minute Sev pulled his hand back and stroked himself some more.

"This is what you do to me, Idis." Sev pulled his fingers off his cock so Dooku could see the streamers of thick precum, before Sev resumed stroking himself.

"I love how wet you get for me."

"So very, very wet." Sev leaned in, for Dooku to suck another coat of precum off Sev's fingers. Then Dooku's cock throbbed as he watched Sev rub precum onto his nipples, and leaned over Dooku's face, for Dooku to lick and suck precum from one nipple, then the other, as Sev clutched his head, moaning.

"Oh, fuck." Dooku kissed Sev's collarbone, burying his face into Sev with a shudder.

"Yeah, you like that, old man?" Sev applied another coat of precum to his nipples, and when Dooku suckled even harder and hungrier than before, Sev's cry of tormented ecstasy made Dooku's own cock throb and leak, his libido surging as hard as it ever had.

Then Sev moved up, straddling Dooku's chest, so the head of his cock brushed Dooku's lips. But after Dooku took a lick at the leaking head, Sev shocked him by moving backwards... aiming his cock so the leaking precum leaked onto his collarbone, his chest. Sev began to work the precum into his skin, like it was oil. Sev slowly moved down the length of Dooku's body, cock leaking all over him, Sev's fingers rubbing the precum around, until Dooku was glistening with Sev's precum. When Sev got to Dooku's thighs, Sev husked, "See, just like I'm yours... you're mine. I'm marking my territory."

That was too much. Dooku felt like he was going to have a heart attack if he didn't have a release soon. "Will you fucking fuck me."

Sev laughed out loud. "Oh my. Such language, Lord Count."

Dooku bitchfaced. Sev laughed even harder.

Sev used the Force to bring over their lube, and poured lube directly into Dooku's channel, and then over his cock - even though his cock was plenty slick. Sev began fingering Dooku again, until Dooku was rolling his hips, fucking Sev's fingers. After a few minutes, when Dooku was as vocal as Sev had ever heard him, Sev withdrew his fingers and began to push his cock inside.

"Fuck, you're so tight," Sev gasped.

Sev could feel that burn in the Force, and he took Dooku's hands. "Do you need me to stop?"

"Keep going."

"Breathe and push out, love."

Dooku did, and then Sev was all the way inside. Sev let him rest for a moment, and then when Sev pulled back, Dooku gasped - Sev hit that spot, and Sev could feel it, too.

"Oh, fuck yes." Sev bit his lower lip. He began to thrust, slowly, hitting that spot again and again as he pushed in, pulled out, back and forth. Dooku's moans of pleasure and the sensations shimmering over their Force bond made it difficult for Sev to keep control, but he kept his animal instincts in check... at least for now.

Sev's hands roamed over Dooku's body, and Dooku's hands roamed over Sev. Wanting to touch, caress, tease, pleasure, feel. The stroking of flesh just built on the pleasure between Sev's cock and Dooku's prostate, making them both shiver, shuddery gasps of breath punctuating their moans.

After awhile, Sev took Dooku's cock into his hand, and sped up the pace a little - not as hard as Sev could fuck, but enough to intensify the pressure and friction... the excitement, the delight. Dooku's voice got louder, encouraging Sev, and Sev continued to caress his bondmate with his free hand, which stroked up to the chest again and again, fingers teasingly brushing the nipples.

As they edged closer, Sev used the Force to bring over the vibrator, and Sev began to tease the slit and frenum of Dooku's cock with the vibrator as his hand rubbed the rest of the shaft, rubbed the balls. Dooku grabbed Sev's hips, urging Sev on harder, faster. After a few minutes of teasing - teasing so delicious that Dooku was a shuddering, sobbing wreck - Sev gave in, fucking hard, Dooku's legs on his shoulders.

When Sev leaned in to kiss Dooku, they both felt their orgasm climbing, about to explode. Sev kissed Dooku's neck, kissing again and again, licking, nibbling...

"I want you," Sev rasped. "And I want to make you come for me."

"I want to feel you come," Dooku husked.

"You don't have to be such a gentleman." Sev nipped Dooku's throat, and then his tongue soothed where his teeth had been before he growled, "Come for me."

"Severin." The word was almost a howl.

Sev felt Dooku throbbing, contracting around him, inner muscles milking his cock... and Sev gave into his own climax. The feeling of Sev spending into him made Dooku's orgasm intensify, and he let out a wordless cry as another wave of pleasure pulsed through him. Sev gripped Dooku's spurting cock, aiming it so his seed made ribbons over Sev's torso, and some even got on Sev's face - Sev licked his lips, tasting the cum, and Dooku gave a final groan as the last contractions took him. Sev shuddered again, still coming - it was a long, delicious orgasm.

Sev collapsed onto Dooku, and Dooku's arms held him tight. A few last deep kisses, and then Sev snuggled into Dooku's chest. The two men fell asleep that way, with Sev still inside Dooku - it felt absolutely cozy and right. In the middle of the night, Dooku got up to stumble to the 'fresher, and when he climbed back into bed, Sev stirred and instinctively wrapped his arms and legs around Dooku, snuggling back into Dooku's chest. Dooku sighed and kissed Sev's curls.

"My sweet boy," Dooku said. "My husband."

"My lifemate." Sev nuzzled Dooku's chest and neck, and gave him a quick kiss before falling back asleep.

They woke up tangled together, like a couple of sleeping cats. They were also both hard again and started their morning kissing, rubbing their cocks together. The feeling of cock rubbing cock was so intensely pleasurable that they decided to make love to climax that way, laying on their sides, cocks and balls rubbing as their hands roamed, their mouths kissed again and again... slow, languid lovemaking that was the perfect way to start their first full day of married life together.

They came together, cock coming on cock, the delicious sight making their orgasm that much harder... harder still when they kissed, drinking each other's cries. Sev collected their combined cum onto his fingers and stuck them in Dooku's mouth, and groaned as he watched Dooku suck his cum-soaked fingers... and then Dooku did the same to Sev, Sev's sultry look as he sucked Dooku's fingers almost enough to set Dooku off a second time. They playfully rubbed their tongues together before kissing again, deeply, passionately.

"I could stay in bed with you all day," Sev whispered.

Dooku nodded. "I could too. But Luke Skywalker says he has something extremely important to talk to us all about."

Sev made an exaggerated groan. "Can't War take a day off?"

"We'll make up for it tonight." Dooku's dark eyes twinkled with mischief. "We'll be plenty worked up by then." He projected some tantalizing mental images into Sev's mind, making Sev shudder, and then he growled at Dooku, bitchfacing with frustration as Dooku got up, laughing.

"Cocktease," Sev said.

"Oh, the brat can't take a little teasing?"

"You're gonna get it, Tyranus."

Dooku smiled. "I certainly hope so."

Chapter Text

"We're about to drop out of hyperspace," Han announced over the intercom.

"...Fuck." Sev closed his eyes and made Wookiee noises.

They were en route to Tython, in a small Resistance-issue cruiser. Luke had been very insistent that they come, and very specific about who was coming - the Seven Light, represented by Dennis, Reine, Ben, Sev, Dooku, Malak, and Neryt... the Seven Shadow, represented by Ari, Mace, Luke, Han, Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon, and Leia... and Sifo-Dyas, Jocasta, Rey, and Finn were also to accompany them. Everyone else was staying behind on Serenno; Irina was acting Regent until her brother's return, and Yoda and Chewbacca were sitting for Owen and Lysa, as well as cat-sitting and goat-sitting.

Luke, Dooku, Sev, Leia, Dennis, Finn, and Rey were sitting on the observation deck together, drinking. Luke and Dooku had been talking quite a bit throughout the trip - Dooku brought Luke up to speed about the resurrections, the New Force Order, and the subsequent closing down of the New Force Order and the necessity of the rebirth of the Separatists; Luke talked about Kylo's time at the New Jedi Order, and the intense soul-searching that followed the death of his dream, that eventually brought him to Tython... "where it all began, thirty-five thousand years ago."

The ship was entering the Tython system, now.

"It's too bad Poe isn't here to see this," Finn said.

Luke nodded. "Tython is dangerous for those who aren't fully Force sensitive."

"And anyway," Dennis teased, "I'm sure Poe could use a few days' break after all the 'catching up' you guys must have done."

"Well, actually..." Rey looked off to the side, and then she sat up straight in her chair. "I'm with Poe and Finn, but just romantically. I don't have sex with them."

"Oh, you're ace?"

Rey nodded. "I like cuddling, and we do a lot of that, but sex... just... doesn't interest me. Finn and Poe take care of each other, and I just encourage them."

"That's cool." Dennis nodded.

Rey breathed a little sigh of relief, and smiled. Dennis smiled back.

"See, Rey, I told you they'd be fine with that," Leia said. "We're a very open-minded family." She snorted. "You have to be, around here."

Dennis cackled. He gave Luke a little nudge. "I'm really glad you've been so cool about, uh..."

"If you make my sister happy, I'm happy," Luke said. "Besides... it's just like Han says, Leia would kill me, so I'm glad she has people besides me taking care of her needs."

"There are worse ways to die." Dennis's smile became a mischievous grin.

"Yes, there are." Luke frowned, and then Dennis knew he was thinking of the New Jedi Order, and Dennis wished he hadn't said that.

"I'm sorry -"

Luke waved his hand. "Don't worry about it. It's not like you were there." Then Luke got up from his chair and walked to the window. He gestured for Dennis and Leia to follow. "You're about to see something amazing."

They watched, and nothing. And then nothing. And more nothing. And then, three minutes later, there was a pin of intensely bright violet light in the dark sea of stars... and that light got bigger as the ship approached. The light began to swirl.

Han's voice over the intercom again. "You want me to fly into that thing?"

"It's not a want," Luke replied. "It's need. I need you to fly into that thing."

Sev bitchfaced. "With all due respect, Master Skywalker -"

"Luke."

"Luke." Sev put his hands on his hips. "Are you out of your fucking mind?"

"Yes, actually." Luke smiled.

The ship began to accelerate, like it was being pulled. The violet light got closer and brighter... it began to reach out at them with tendrils of purple and blue light, and then all at once the ship was enfolded in a web of purple and blue, and Luke braced himself as the ship lurched. There was a hum, and the lights on deck flickered. "What. The. Fuck." Sev looked annoyed, but the annoyance was a mask for fear... and intense nausea. Sev felt like his shoes were where his chest should be, and his stomach was somewhere in the back of his skull.

And then the web let go, and they were back in what looked like normal space... except they weren't. The Tython system, which had been quiet, dead space except for the sun, planets, and moons in it, was now filled with space traffic the kind of which one would expect to see in Corellian or Coruscanti space. All of the ships were marked clearly with the starbird of...

"...The Rebel Alliance." Sev's jaw dropped.

The ship passed by Shikaakwa - an ancient outlaw colony - and then the blue-and-green Kalimahr, in antiquity called "the jewel of the Tythan system". And then they saw the blue-and-white sphere of Tython, orbited by its two moons, Ashla and Bogan - Ashla gleaming white, Bogan a dark grey.

"Preparing for landing," came Han's voice over the intercom.

Luke, Dennis, and Leia sat back down. Everyone fastened their seatbelts as the ship began to accelerate down through Tython's atmosphere. Through the observation deck window, they watched the clouds. Even in the atmosphere, behind the hulls of a ship, Sev understood why Luke had said Tython was dangerous for those not fully Force-sensitive - it felt like they were inside the Force itself... Sev's mental and emotional link to Dooku intensified, enough that both men broke out into gooseflesh. Sev's drink came to him without him even having to think about using the Force to move the glass over.

"What the fuck," Sev said again.

Luke gave that small, cryptic smile again. "It gets better."

Dooku reached out in the Force to help soothe Sev with the remainder of the descent - the last of it was worse, with the gravity shift - and it was easier, with their Force bond stronger in the energies of Tython. When at last they landed, there was a beautiful forest shining through the observation deck windows, gold and green in a blue and violet sky.

With shaking legs, Sev stood up, and Dooku helped him to their quarters, where they retrieved their luggage, and then joined the others in the cargo bay to disembark. As they stepped out of the ship, Sev felt like the ground was pulsing underneath his feet, the air shimmering around him. A few deep breaths and he felt high.

Enough that he thought he was hallucinating when he saw a man who looked a lot like himself, but clean-shaven and with shoulder-length wavy dark green hair, wearing the emerald-green-and-charcoal robes of a Corellian Jedi. He was standing next to a man who looked like Dooku three decades ago - fewer wrinkles, hair and beard grey rather than white - in an outfit very similar to Dooku's own, but with a royal blue cape and a dark brown tunic over black trousers.

"Greetings," said the Dooku-alike. "I'm Yan Dooku, the Grandmaster of the New Je'daii Order... and this is my husband, Severus. Welcome to Tython."

Now it was Tyranus's turn to say "What the fuck."

_

It was one thing to know that both Luke and Ben had crossed dimensions into an alternate universe version of Tython where the gang was all there... and it was another thing to see them in the flesh. To walk among them.

They were at Akar Kesh, the Temple of Balance... where a Dennis-alike named Dougras Inari - one of Severus's brothers - was the Je'daii Master. The main difference between Dougras and Dennis was that Dougras's hair was a more medium brown with a few streaks of green, and slightly longer - more unruly, threatening to curl if it grew out any more. Dougras wore robes of grey and moss green, which complemented his eyes, the same grey-green of Dennis's own. Where Dennis was warm and more personable, Dougras was a bit more brusque, marching them down the halls to show them guest quarters with no small talk. "I don't expect you'll be spending much time in your quarters," he said. "There's a lot to see and do, and you only have a few days for all of it."

Three days, exactly, before the next rift opened... or they'd be stuck here for three months.

"But first," Yan said, "we should have tea."

Tyranus gave a small smile at this - apparently Yan was still enough of a Jedi to find the tea ceremony of importance. Dougras, Severus, and Yan brought the group to a meditation room with comfortable cushions on the floor, and many potted plants around the room - exotic Tythan species nobody had ever seen before. As Yan got the tea ready, Severin and Tyranus wandered around the room, admiring the plants. And Qui-Gon was talking to them. He got one - a bioluminescent variety that glowed in the artificial lighting of the meditation chamber and would be spectacular in complete darkness - to sway to the rhythm of his finger, like it was dancing. Then Severin gasped - a small group of bioluminescent butterflies were feeding on the pollen of the flowers, and they began to dance as well, swirling around Qui-Gon, and then Qui-Gon directed them to fly to Severin, beaming at him. One perched on Severin's index finger, its blue glow intensifying, pulsing with the slow flap of its wings. It was the prettiest shade of blue Severin had ever seen, and he felt like he could cry at the beauty of the moment.

"And that is but a small taste of the magic of Tython," Luke said.

The butterfly flittered off, but not without dusting Sev with a fine blue glitter that gave him a head rush and made him start giggling uncontrollably.

"Oh, I should have warned you the dahlias have psychoactive properties," Dougras said.

"Which can be used for medicinal purposes," Severus added.

Severin cocked his head to one side. "You're a doctor?"

Severus nodded. "I'm in charge of Mahara Kesh, the Temple of Healing."

Severin let out a low whistle. "The more things change, the more things stay the same."

"Tea is ready." Yan gave a small bow. Then he said to Severin, "I think you'll find a great deal of consistency across universes, even as some things are quite different."

Severin nodded as he sat down. "Quite different would be an understatement. We noticed all the Rebel Alliance traffic when we crossed into your universe. I take it Darth Vader's Empire never fell?"

Severus and Yan exchanged glances, and then Severus and Dougras exchanged glances. Yan gestured for Dougras to speak, and Dougras gave a small clear of his throat before he said, "Empire... no. No Empire here. That never happened."

"We're at war with the Republic," Yan said, matter-of-factly.

"And he's just Vader. No Darth," Severus said.

"Vader is the ancient Dai Bendu word for father," Yan explained. "He calls himself the Father of the Republic. Among other things."

"The Republic calls him that." Severus pursed his lips. "I still refuse to believe he's... completely responsible... for all of this. He was such a good boy. Somewhere, deep down, Anakin is still there -"

Yan waved his hand, and said, "Tea. Before it gets cold."

Yan used the Force to pour tea into small shot glasses for everyone, as was the Jedi custom. The small shot glasses were because the tea was brewed very strong. Severin still felt lightheaded from the dusting of pollen, and found all of his senses were ramped up so the tea affected his palate even more intensely than it normally would. "I can't tell if I like this or not," Severin said, swirling his tea around in his glass. "It's interesting."

"How long were you with the Jedi Order?" Tyranus asked his counterpart.

"Presuming our timelines have at least a few things in common, I left a few months following Galidraan." Yan gave a small frown. "Following the suicide of my padawan."

Tyranus took a deep breath. He knew exactly which padawan that was. He didn't know which was a crueler end - her suicide in Yan's universe, or her death at his hands in this one. And then reincarnating as Joxa Shihai and making many of the same mistakes all over again.

"...who was clearly also your padawan." Yan raised his glass.

Tyranus just nodded.

"I have a small memorial for Komari at Mahara Kesh," Yan said. "I built it a few years after Severus and I had settled there."

"How long have you been here?" Tyranus asked.

"Do you mean on Tython, or..." Yan put his hand on Severus's forearm, and Severus gave him a warm smile. "With Severus?"

"Yes to both, I suppose."

"Right after I left the Jedi Order, I went to Corellia, intending to drown my sorrows. I found Severus there."

"So you're older than I am," Severin said to his counterpart.

"I'm over three hundred," Severus replied.

"OK, now you're taking the piss." Severin smirked.

"No, I'm not. I come from a long-lived species."

"I know the Echani can live to be in their hun-"

"I'm not Echani."

Severin raised an eyebrow.

Malak ran a hand through his short dark hair. "Back in the day when Revan and I did the Sith alchemy working and... this... happened, we got to change four variables per universe. In this one, two of the variables we changed were ages and species."

"I see." Severin nodded.

"Oh, you and my other brother, Claer, definitely need to meet and talk," Severus said to Malak. "He's the Master of Anil Kesh, our Temple of Science."

"He's a scientist." Now Malak raised an eyebrow.

"Yes. Aren't you?"

Malak downed his tea and went for another glass, like it was alcohol. "No. Unlike my brothers, I never went to university." And now I see what I could have become if I did. "I, uh, went into construction. Until the First Order started recruiting."

"Luke and Ben both told us about this First Order," Yan said, "and it's one of the reasons why we told Luke to bring all of you here. What is happening with the Republic here now is very much like what would happen with the First Order in charge of your Galaxy."

"Well, we definitely didn't need to be sold on the idea that the First Order is bad news," Severin said. "We found that out firsthand."

"I'm sure," Yan said, "but..." He looked at Severin, and then at Dougras.

Dougras spoke. "You mentioned that Revan helped you create a multiverse, and no doubt, Revan is aware of this."

"It's how I got here," Ben said. "When I first crossed into their universe -" He gestured to his companions. "-I was interrogated. Kylo knows I came from elsewhere... Kylo knows I spent some time here." He swallowed hard. "He knows Luke was here, and our paths crossed."

"It's only going to be a matter of time before Kylo Ren comes here looking for Luke," Dougras said, nodding.

"And Kylo found the Star Forge, which is in Rakata space. On the other side of the Tythan system." Dennis folded his arms.

Malak took a deep breath. He could read between the lines, and he didn't like what was there. "If Kylo knows about all of this, Snoke knows about all of this, and Snoke is Valkorion." Ben was about to protest saying his name, and Malak waved his hand. "Our ancient nemesis. Who did a damn fine job of fucking things up for us four thousand years ago."

"If he means to destroy the Seven Light," Tyranus said, "he might go a step further and destroy where it all began."

"There was a wound in the Force from Alderaan," Leia said. "A wound in the Force created by destroying a planet as strong in the Force as Tython..."

"...with the Seven Light and Seven Shadow present..." Tyranus pinched the bridge of his nose. "That would be a great source of power for our enemy."

"One of our tasks while we're here will be to secure Tython," Luke said. "We can raise a Force shield. We'll have additional energy from our counterparts."

"About that," Yan said. "We're not... all present."

Luke nodded. "Their universe's version of me tried to rescue his father from the Jedi Order. He's still there. The Jedi Order are the enforcers of the Republic."

"Anakin himself tried to take on the Jedi Order, which is how he wound up there. He came with us to Tython. He was our first Grandmaster. But then..." Severus shook his head with a sad sigh.

"He was an arrogant fool," Yan said. "He did not deserve what was done to him, no, but that does not mean that he has no fault in this matter. He shouldn't have -"

"OK, guys, you've been arguing about this for fifty years now." Dougras folded his arms, and then he used the Force to pour them more tea, and shoved the tea glasses in their faces before they could protest - they could only drink. "Old married couples, I swear."

"Oh, you're a fine one to talk." Severus snickered at his brother. "You and Gweir argue about some of the most pointless bullshit ever, like whether or not Wesk is a vowel. I swear you do it for the makeup sex."

Dougras just gave a small, mischievous grin before he sipped his tea.

"Gweir?" Dennis was curious.

"One of my bondmates. Master of Bodhi, Temple of the Arts. You'll meet him." Dougras looked like he was going to say more, but then he stopped - Dennis could feel Dougras's mounting discomfort in the Force, like he wanted to be anywhere else. Dennis wondered why - he knew it had to be disconcerting for Dougras to be around his counterpart, but this went above and beyond the standard discomfort with such things.

When the tea was gone, Severus pulled Severin to his feet. "There's something I want to show you," he said. "Come."

Severin followed his counterpart; Yan and Idis Dooku followed behind.

Akar Kesh was atop a very tall monolith and was the meeting place of eight rivers, which cascaded down the monolith in many waterfalls. Severus was leading them to the closest waterfall to the Temple - still a good hike away. Severin reached for his inhaler and took a puff, and the moment he did, there was a slither in the grass, and Severin and Tyranus watched in shock as Severus's lightsaber glowed green and hummed as it swung, hacking apart a large snake-like creature. With spines all over its body, and four rows of fangs. Severin felt like he was going to faint looking at it; he'd seen few creatures more frightening.

"They're drawn by the presence of the Dark Side," Severus warned them. "In this case, he heard your inhaler."

"What the fuck?" Severin had never said those three words as often in his life.

"Here on Tython, many of the creatures - both plants and animals - decide whether or not you're food based on your alignment," Yan Dooku explained. "It's why the ancient Je'daii taught a philosophy of balance in the Force, and had a policy of exiling those who leaned too much to the Light Side or the Dark, to one of the moons."

"We're Sith Lords," Tyranus told his counterpart, "and I have no intention of being exiled."

"You'll only be here three days so there's no need for that," Yan said. "If you were here longer-term, we would... have to address your alignment, not just for your own safety, but that of everyone here. As it is..." He pointed to the snake his husband had cut in half. "That would have eaten you."

"And there's probably more around," Severus said. "And that's still not the worst thing we have to contend with."

"No, it's not." Yan frowned. "We might get a good Force storm."

"I hope not. That last one we had to deal with was a real doozy." Then Severus put his finger to his lips.

Keenly attuned to the land, Yan and Severus cut down four more of the same kind of snake, hanging in the trees.

"We normally would let them be," Severus said, "mindful of the ecology and all... but there's no way they would have just left you alone."

"The good news is we're almost here, and the snakes stay away from this part of the forest," Yan said.

"Why?" Severin asked.

Then he saw why.

At the forest's edge, on a cliff ledge with one waterfall cascading into another, there was a tall stone statue - a robed, hooded figure, face tilted downward, hands clasped around the hilt of a sword. All around the statue grew wild roses, and a plant that looked suspiciously like cannabis.

"That's the Prophet of Fire," Severus told them. He looked at Severin. "Very relevant to our interests, no?"

Severin made a Wookiee noise.

They approached the statue slowly. "The most potent Forceleaf on Tython grows here," Severus went on. "We're going to collect some to welcome you properly." He knelt next to the statue and took a cutting from the plant growing closest to the Prophet's feet.

Severin looked up at the statue - three times his height. Tyranus put a hand on his husband's shoulder. "It's near a waterfall and everything," Tyranus said. "Your Force signature." He swallowed hard. "My dreams of you."

Severin turned to him, and they kissed - a soft, sweet, lingering kiss that drove away Severin's continued discomfort with the Seven Light and his Higher Self. And when Tyranus stroked Severin's face, Severin felt like the statue had somehow awakened... or he was just now noticing a presence there. It felt like the statue was thrumming.

It felt like there was something inside the statue.

When Severin and Tyranus pulled apart, a little breathless, Severin asked his hosts, "How long has that been standing there?"

"Since the beginning of the Je'daii Order," Yan said. "So that statue is a good thirty-five or thirty-six thousand years old."

Severin let out a low whistle. "It's unusually well-preserved."

"So are we." Yan chuckled. "Master Yoda is going to have his thousandth birthday soon."

Tyranus's eyebrows went up. "He didn't die, in your continuity."

"No."

Tyranus asked, "What about Qui-Gon?"

"Master of Qigong Kesh, Temple of Force Skills. He and his husband, Obi-Wan."

"Sifo-Dyas?"

"Master of Vur Tepe, the Forge."

"Mace?"

"Master of Stav Kesh, Temple of Martial Arts."

Tyranus took a deep breath. "Is Irina here?"

"No. She died." Yan looked away.

"Not by Vader?"

"No. Natural causes."

Tyranus nodded. Then he asked, out of curiosity, "How long since you were last to Serenno?"

The subject of Irina had made Yan sad, and now he looked even sadder. It took Yan a minute to answer, and then he said slowly, "There is no more Serenno."

Severin steadied Tyranus.

"What happened?" Tyranus asked.

"The Republic happened," Severus said. He tucked the sample of Forceleaf into a satchel he had over his shoulder. "They destroyed quite a few planets."

Tyranus didn't know what to say, and neither did Severin. Severus and Yan Dooku looked at each other, and then Yan said, "Instead of staying at Akar Kesh, why don't the two of you come back with us to Mahara Kesh, and we can compare notes?"

Tyranus nodded, and so did Severin.

They made their way back to Akar Kesh in silence. When they went to their quarters to retrieve their luggage, they bumped into Reine, who looked a little queasy.

"Hey, honey, you OK?" Severin said to his sister-in-law, sitting her down.

Reine nodded. "Yeah. I just had another bout of morning sickness, but comes with the territory, I guess."

Severus stood over them. "We're taking our counterparts to Mahara Kesh. You and your husband should come with us, and I can give you a prenatal exam."

"All right," Reine said, nodding. "I'll tell Malak." She got up, and Severin and Severus looked at each other. There was an awkward moment of silence before Reine came back with Malak and their luggage in tow.

They began walking through the back of Akar Kesh. "How are we getting to Mahara Kesh?" Severin asked. "Flying?"

"After we'd been here about a decade, we developed a portal system between Temples," Yan Dooku said, just before they approached the gate.

"Oh, shit. No..."

Before Severin could run off, Tyranus grabbed his husband's arm and they made the portal jump first. When they arrived on the other side, Tyranus steadied Severin, who was shaking. "It's all right," he soothed, stroking Severin's curls.

Yan and Severus appeared next, followed by Malak and Reine.

"Fucking hell," Severin swore.

"If you think that's bad, you should see the portal that brought us here," Severus said. He gestured, and the group followed to one of the medical suites. Severus gave Severin a drug to help with the nausea and anxiety induced by the portal jump, and then he asked Reine, "Do you want privacy for the prenatal exam, or ?"

"You're doing an ultrasound, right?" Reine asked.

Severus nodded.

"They can stay if they want to."

Malak was definitely staying at his wife's side; Severin and Tyranus also decided to stay. Yan Dooku respectfully bowed out, saying he'd make them something to eat. He and Severus exchanged a kiss on the way out that brought a familiar thrust to Severin's loins. As strange as it was to meet his counterpart, Severin was finding it comforting to know Severus and Yan were just as in love - and in lust - with each other as Severin and Tyranus were. It was also arousing. I'd like to watch them fuck, Severin thought to himself, and then he caught the sense that Tyranus felt similarly but was too much of a gentleman to admit it.

Severus was soft-spoken, like Severin, and had a warm, compassionate bedside manner that put Reine at ease right away. "Have you had an ultrasound before?" Severus asked.

Reine shook her head. "Sev - uh, the other Sev - was going to do one right about now, before Luke crashed his wedding and then said everybody needs to go to Tython."

Severus chuckled. He explained the procedure, and when Reine was ready, they began. Malak held Reine's hand as Severus ran the ultrasound and they saw the first images of their unborn child on a screen.

...Unborn children.

"Did you know you were expecting twins?" Severus asked.

"No." Reine started laughing and crying all at once, and Malak broke down sobbing with joy.

Then Malak asked, "Do we know what sex...?"

"Not late enough yet," Severus said. "In about another month and a half, you can find out." Severus smiled. "Congratulations on the twins."

"That's so weird," Malak said through his tears. "Dennis has twins... now I have twins..."

"Well... correct me if I'm wrong, but you and your brothers are triplets, right?" Then Severus looked at Reine. "And you're a twin?" Reine and Malak both nodded. "That raises the likelihood, especially with certain species - Echani, in particular."

"We're both Echani," Malak said. "I'm half-Echani, and Reine's a quarter."

"Your counterpart is part Dathomiri," Severus told Reine.

"Is she still Mace Windu's granddaughter?" Reine asked.

Severus nodded. "He took up with a Dathomiri woman who fled genocide -"

"-Another one?" Severin's eyebrows went up.

Severus nodded again, more slowly. "They had children, and then grandchildren."

"In our continuity, Reine's grandmother is our aunt," Severin said. "But you're... not Dathomiri. You don't look it."

"No, I'm not. Reine and I are only related by marriage in this continuity." Severus finished up the ultrasound, and there was more bubbling and sobbing from Reine and Malak as they watched the twin fetuses on the screen. Severin got a little teared up too, happy and excited for them both.

After the ultrasound, Severus showed the four guests their quarters, and Reine decided she wanted to take a shower; Malak decided he wanted to join her. That left Severin and Tyranus alone with Severus. Severus proceeded to give them the grand tour of Mahara Kesh, including levels that were underwater, with a lit-up view of the sea from the windows. Tyranus thought it was breathtaking; Severin was fascinated, and made a happy squealing sound when a pair of dolphins swam up to the window, lingering for a moment before swimming away. Severus beamed.

They finished the tour by taking a walk along the promenade of the Temple, outside, which led to a beach. Mahara Kesh was on a small island, and most of its coast was forested; the portion closest to the Temple entrance had a very nicely picturesque beach with a view of several large stone formations some meters out. A rock jetty led out to a cave, and they walked with Severus there. As they did, seabirds flew above them, calling out.

"It's fucking beautiful here," Severin said, before he could stop himself. Then he said, "Er, my language."

Severus laughed, handwaving. "I'm another you. Suffice it to say, I don't give a fuck. And if you don't believe me, just ask my son."

"Your son...?"

"Yan and I raised Han Solo as our child."

"I dreamed about that." Severin nodded, remembering. "It's just... trippy. He's my apprentice in my continuity."

"I'm very proud of him," Severus said, "and my grandsons."

Inside the cave, there were Force crystals, sparkling in the sunlight. Tyranus and Severin both gasped at the sight of them. They were iridescent, making the cave glitter with rainbows - making the view of the ocean sparkle with rainbows. "Holy fuck." Severin couldn't get over how beautiful it was.

"Holy fuck is when Yan and I have had ritual sex in here," Severus said, grinning.

"Oh, myyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy." Severin grinned too. "I'm glad you guys are so happy together."

"We've been together a long time now. Our love has aged like a fine wine. And the sex is amazing, us being as familiar with each other's bodies as we are." Severus bit his lower lip.

Delicious mental images of Severus and Yan making love came to Severin's mind, chased by mental images of what it would be like to make love with his own husband decades from now. It was all Severin could do to not throw Tyranus down and ride him right then and there.

"I'll have to take you guys back out here tonight," Severus went on. "Ashla and Bogan are both going to be full and this cave by moonlight is something else."

Severin and Tyranus nodded. "We look forward to it," Tyranus said.

"Yan probably has food ready for us, so we should head back, since we're coming back later," Severus said.

As they walked back down the jetty, Severin said, "I'm sorry that you came here under shitty circumstances, but at least you have a beautiful little refuge here."

Severus nodded. "This is our paradise. This isn't just a Temple of Healing for medical purposes, but it's healing to the soul, too. The saying 'time heals all wounds' is a canard - it still hurts, all these decades later - but it hurts less being here."

"So... Yan said he found you on Corellia." Severin paused before he went on. "I think that's really interesting - I'm from Corellia, though I'm a near-human off-worlder; I moved there from Eshan when I was six."

"I spent my whole life on Corellia. My family had been there for generations."

"Really. What part of Corellia? Coronet City?"

"The Green Hills."

Severin threw back his head and laughed. "OK now, you're messing with us. The Green Hills is fiction."

Severus glared.

Severin went on. "I loved it, though. Lord of the Bling is my favorite book, starring Yolo Swaggins and Yandalf the wizard -"

"What." Severus narrowed his eyes.

"It's a book about elves." Severin cackled. "I mean, if you're from the Green Hills, you're an elf."

"The fuck you call me?"

"An elf?"

Severus drew his lightsaber, glowing green. "Call me elf one more time..."

Severin backed away quickly. "Whoa, whoa... hey now. I didn't mean to offend you."

Severus looked at his lightsaber, and then de-activated it, looking a bit sheepish. As he clipped it back into his belt, he said, "I normally am not like this. It must be the presence of the Dark Side affecting me."

"...oh." Severin was starting to see why the Je'daii who lived on Tython held so firmly to the middle of the Force - it seemed that one could be affected by the alignments of those present.

Before Severin could think of what to say, Severus went on, "Elf is considered a racial slur where I'm from. When I had to venture outside the Green Hills, I heard it quite a lot."

"Oh." Severin sighed. "Shit, I'm sorry. I didn't know."

"I know that now." Severus put his hands on his hips. "So... where I'm from is considered fictional in your universe?"

Severin nodded. He scratched his head. "That's a real mindfuck. Makes me wonder now if Frogwarts is real in some universe."

"Frog...warts?"

"A wizarding academy from the Parry Hotter series."

It was clear by Severus's expression that he didn't know of the academy or the series, which Severin found both unsettling and a relief all at once.

Then Severus said, "My brother Claer is a wizard, but he never went there. Still, because of my brother being what he is, I like to read stories about wizards. Do you have any of this Parry Hotter that I can read for amusement?"

"I actually didn't bring any of that with me, but uh, Neryt wri-"

Severus's eyebrows went up, and the haunted expression on his face made Severin stop mid-sentence.

There was an awkward pause, and Severin continued, "My sister-in-law, Neryt, writes Parry Hotter fanfic that's at least as good as the original series. She might let you read her stuff." Severin bit his lower lip with a guilty grin. "It's pretty smutty."

"Oh is it? Then I definitely want to read it."

Severin and Severus both laughed. "The more shit changes, the more it stays the same, eh?" Severin asked.

Back at the Temple, there was an impressive spread of food, even more impressive for having been put together for guests on short notice. And it was delicious. Yan had even thought to include a few Corellian delicacies, which Severin and Malak thought was a nice touch.

"I love Serennian food, but I do miss Corellian food," Severin said.

Severus nodded. "Yan can cook."

Severin smiled at Tyranus. "It's another thing that seems to be common across universes."

Tyranus smiled back, and then gave a little roll of his eyes. "I had to learn how to cook out of necessity - it was either that or eat Master Yoda's cooking."

Yan snorted into his tea. "I'm surprised the Jedi Order didn't consider Father's cooking a form of cruel and unusual punishment."

"Indeed."

As they ate and Yan received many compliments on his cooking, he said, "I think it helps that we grow most of our own food here, so everything is very fresh. We do import some things from elsewhere in the Galaxy, but we try to be as self-sufficient as possible here because of the state of Galactic politics being what it is."

Tyranus nodded. "I've no doubt some of the reason why Master Skywalker wanted us to come here was to show us firsthand what total war looks like. I have some recollection from the Clone Wars, but there were enough corporations involved that we didn't have to worry so much. Not this time, however."

"If your Serenno is the way I remember it, Serenno's economy will likely benefit from becoming a major agricultural exporter to other Separatist worlds."

"So you do know about the Separatists?"

"Luke was kind enough to fill us in on history in your Galaxy. The Clone Wars didn't happen here - not in the way that it happened in your universe. There were, and are, clones on the Republic side, and there was, and is, a war, but the Confederacy of Independent Systems never got off the ground. It's been the Rebel Alliance versus the Republic. A Republic that is worse than your Empire ever was."

"It must be, if Serenno is gone. Vader could have destroyed us, but instead he killed the eldest male from every noble house... and all of my surviving relatives." Tyranus frowned.

"I'm sorry," Yan told him.

Tyranus sighed. "You may have gotten more of the raw deal, it seems. You said the Republic destroyed worlds, plural." He raised an eyebrow. "You met on Corellia and fled... is Corellia gone...?"

"No, Corellia still stands," Severus said, "but the Green Hills... gone. Our population was decimated. A tenth of us came here to Tython, and within a week we all fell ill and half of them died."

"Force." Tyranus made a Wookiee noise, and Severin closed his eyes, feeling a sharp stab of pain in his chest and gut, as Severus's memories flashed in his mind. Severus was still traumatized, and the trauma had influenced him to become a physician.

"Anakin Skywalker was one of those who helped us escape," Severus said. "After we'd been here awhile, he went to Coruscant to try to fight with a small army. Too small."

"He was a damn fool," Yan said.

"Yes." Severus rolled his eyes; they'd had this conversation too many times. Severus pursed his lips and then he went on. "The Jedi couldn't kill their Chosen One, so they... re-educated him. Brainwashed him. And then when Luke was old enough, he tried to rescue his father and he was taken by them, too."

"By the time Luke was old enough, Vader already had a tremendous amount of blood on his hands," Yan said, an edge to his voice.

"Yes, but he was brainwashed, Yan. Can we truly hold him responsible for what he's done under mind control?"

Yan sighed, and then Severus sighed, too.

"So..." Tyranus gave a small clear of his throat. "If you don't mind me asking, which other planets did the Republic destroy?"

"It started with an Outer Rim planet called Yllen," Severus said, "or at least, that was the first we'd heard of it. It was on the Republic news."

"And it was already old news by the time it made news," Yan said. "They'd tried to keep it quiet but Anakin blew the whistle and they decided to do damage control by spinning it as a war against the Sith."

"There was no Sith presence there." Severus frowned. "My sister-in-law, Sarenya, is Ylleni. She was to the Yllen what I was to the Lannin. Her people fared better than mine - still many losses, but their population was in the hundreds when we arrived and found them here."

"How did you both know to come to Tython?" Tyranus asked.

Severus gave a small, rueful smile. "It turns out that the Ylleni and Lannin are the same species by a different name. Our very distant ancestors were from Tython, and when they left Tython - long before the Je'daii arrived here - they set up portal technology that could be used in the event of an emergency evacuation."

"Fascinating."

"It gets even more fascinating, Lord Tyranus. When we take you to Bodhi tomorrow - where you'll meet Sarenya, and my cousin Gweir - there is something very interesting to show you."

Malak finally spoke up - he'd been practically inhaling the food Yan made. "So the Republic destroyed the Green Hills... and they destroyed Yllen and Serenno."

"Yllen, Serenno, Eshan, Alameen, Dathomir, Kashyyyk, and Ahch-To. Seven planets altogether."

Severin dropped his teacup. It didn't break, but he spilled tea all over himself. Severin swore, as Tyranus used the Force to bring over a small towel and began towelling him off.

"Yes, indeed." Yan nodded solemnly. "The significance of that number was not lost on us either."

"And it ties into the interestingness we'll be showing you tomorrow," Severus said.

"We're Alameenian and Echani," Malak said. "Two of those seven worlds are our parents' homeworlds."

Yan continued nodding.

The conversation died down then - there was really not much one could say following talk of genocide - and the rest of the meal was finished in silence. Afterwards, Malak and Reine departed to their quarters. The sun was setting, and Severin and Tyranus watched the sunset on the beach. The sunset was as magnificent as the sunsets on Serenno - the sky lit up with every color of the rainbow, in wild swirling clouds that also lit up the ocean. As the sunset faded to twilight, shades of indigo dominating the sky with touches of fire at the horizon, Yan and Severus came out. They were just in time to see two dolphins, from a distance, leaping from the ocean and diving back in.

"Mating dance," Severus said, and gave Yan a wicked grin. Yan winked at his bondmate.

Severus and Yan sat with them to watch the moonrise. Ashla appeared first, then Bogan. The contrast of light and dark moons - and so large - was breathtaking.

"Is it like this every full moon?" Severin asked.

Severus nodded.

Then Severin had a moment of realization. "I don't know about Yllen, but all of the other worlds that the Republic destroyed had two moons."

"Yllen did as well." Severus pursed his lips. "Corellia has the three moons."

"That's... an interesting coincidence."

"It's not a coincidence," Yan said.

"But let's not talk about that anymore tonight," Severus said. He produced a glass pipe from his satchel. Severin gave a small smile as he watched Severus pack the bowl, a familiar ritual. Severus explained as he packed the bowl, "This weed that grows on Tython... the Je'daii called it Forceleaf. It's very potent. You only need a little bit, and it... will intensify your connection to the Force."

"Which has already intensified quite a bit since we got here," Severin said.

"Well, prepare to have your mind blown." Severus couldn't resist following with, "And maybe something else, if you're lucky."

"Oh, myyyyyyyyy." Severin grinned at Tyranus, who blushed - Severin always found it adorable, and somewhat sexy, when his bondmate got bashful - and then, across their Force bond, Severin got a glimpse of his husband's private thoughts.

Even though the other members of their family were largely in multipartner relationships, Tyranus only had eyes for Severin; he loved like he fought, and just like Tyranus chose to specialize in Makashi rather than a hybrid of two or more different forms, he preferred being monogamous.

But here they were around another universe's version of Severin, and Tyranus couldn't deny that he found Severus lovely as well. Not only did they look similar - while Severus had long green hair and was clean-shaven - but they had similar enough personalities, things that had stayed consistent across universes. He was as aroused by Severus and Yan together as Severin was; both Severin and Tyranus were interested in watching them... and being watched. And Tyranus wondered what it would be like to enjoy both versions of his bondmate...

...or even better, to his way of thinking, watching them enjoy each other.

Severin also found Severus attractive, both in appearance and as a person, and of course he found Yan Dooku quite attractive, though he had a preference for his Idis. Suddenly Severin's mind was racing with thoughts not just of watching Severus and Yan together, but being fucked by both Dookus... and indulging Tyranus's fantasy of Sev-on-Sev.

It brought heat to Severin's face and he felt himself hardening. Severin's eyes met Severus's as Severus passed the pipe to him, and Severin knew then: Severus was thinking the same thing.

This is going to be an interesting evening.

Chapter Text

The seaside cave was breathtaking by daylight, but under the play of light and shadows from Ashla and Bogan hanging large and full in the night skies above, it was glorious. The iridescent Force crystals lit up the cave with sparkles in every color of the rainbow, and the cave itself was lit with a subtle rainbow haze that gave it a dreamlike quality. Severin took some pictures with his holocamera, and a short video footage of the sea through one of the openings of the cave, the Force crystals casting their rainbow sparkle out to the moonlit sea.

"It was worth it to come here just to see this," Severin said. "Hyperspace, portals, and all."

Severus smiled.

Then Severus turned his smile to Yan Dooku, who gave a small smile of his own, dark eyes twinkling with mischief. "You haven't seen the most beautiful sight on Tython yet," Severus said.

Severus and Yan had changed into ritual robes before taking their guests out to the cave. Now Severus untied the belt of Yan's blue robe and slipped it off of him, with Yan standing fully naked, silver chest, arm, and leg hair gleaming in the moonlight. Severus ran his hands over him appreciatively, and his smile got bigger as Yan's cock rose to his bondmate's touch.

"I beg to differ," Yan husked. He slipped the dark teal robe off of Severus. "This is the most beautiful sight on Tython."

"Oh, myyyyy." Severin let out an appreciative low whistle at the two lovers. Tyranus turned pink.

Severus and Yan were indeed Severin and Tyranus's counterparts in every way, right down to their cocks - Yan and Severus were the same length and girth, but Yan's was a deeper pink and more veiny, and Yan's cock curved slightly up and in. But there was a difference between Severus's cock and Severin's cock - Severus's cock was crowned with a platinum ring in the head, bearing a single round emerald. Severin did a double-take at it.

"Did that hurt?" Severin asked.

"Well, yeah, all body piercings hurt," Severus chuckled. "But it only hurt to get done, and then it healed up, and... well, let's just say the use I've gotten out of it made the pain well worth it."

Mental images of Severus taking Yan, the ring in the head of Severus's cock - the jewel in the ring - hitting his prostate just right, providing utterly delicious stimulation, and intense, mind-blowing orgasms. Severin was definitely hard now, his throat dry as he struggled to breathe, his heart pounding with arousal.

"When did you get it done?" Severin asked, before he could stop himself.

Severus folded his arms. "When I was twelve, I left Corellia to see the Galaxy. I wound up being sold as a slave, and with all that implies. When I escaped from my master and returned to Corellia, I was of age, and I got this pierced as a way of reasserting my ownership over my body. That this belongs to me." Then he leered at Yan. "It belongs to Yan too, obviously."

"Quite obviously." Yan stroked the length of his bondmate's cock with his index finger, making Severus shudder.

"It's pretty," Severin said before he could stop himself. It's pretty? Really? He facepalmed.

Severus laughed, and so did Yan. Then Severus gestured for Severin to come over. When Severin was standing before his counterpart, Severus said, "You can touch it if you want."

Severin bit his lower lip, heat rising in his face. I'm blushing just like Idis does. He definitely wanted to, but he felt unexpectedly shy, hesitant.

Severus met his eyes, and then took Severin's finger and guided it over the ring, and then around the site of the piercing... and then around the head of the cock, down the shaft. When Severin added a second finger and stroked his way back up, Severus pulled him in for a deep, sultry kiss.

"Yes," Yan hissed. Tyranus made a growl of approval at the scene.

Severin had been told many times he was a good kisser, and he liked kissing, but here was the proof, kissing another version of him. Severin and Severus kissed with hungry passion, tongues dancing in perfect rhythm, searching, exploring, teasing. When they pulled apart, breathless, Severus nuzzled his counterpart, and nipped Severin's lower lip with a little grin, before they kissed open-mouthed, playfully rubbing their tongues together, making their bondmates groan again, seeing their fantasy in the flesh.

Severus reached down to grope Severin's hard-on through his trousers. "We need to do something about this," Severus said.

"Yes, we do." With that, Tyranus came behind Severin, pulled a knife to Severin's throat - making Severin gasp, and his cock leap, twinging with need - and then Severin gasped and shuddered as Tyranus dragged the knife down to cut the clothing away from his bondmate's body. Once Severin's clothes had fallen to the floor of the cave, and he stood naked underneath the moonlight, his body shining with rainbows from the Force crystals, Tyranus reached from behind to run his hands over Severin's naked flesh, his fingers lingering at the nipples and the cock.

"Much better." Severus smirked, and then he got down on his knees. His eyes locked with his counterpart's, and Severin cried out as Severus swallowed his counterpart's cock down to the hilt.

Yan watched, stroking himself. Tyranus tilted Severin's face to his and kissed him again and again, as Severus sucked enthusiastically. As Tyranus kissed his husband, his hands continued to roam over Severin's body, making Severin shiver at the delicious fire of his bondmate's touch. Between the sight and sensation of Severus sucking his cock, and watching Yan Dooku stroke himself watching them, and Tyranus kissing and caressing him, Severin felt right on that edge, ready to come any minute...

...and Tyranus's cock poked the small of his back, through the trousers Tyranus was still wearing.

"This isn't right," Severin said.

Severus's eyes widened and he took Severin's cock out of his mouth.

Severin turned to Tyranus with a wicked grin. "You're the only one of us not naked." Before Tyranus could protest - still modest after months of intimacy with Severin, and some of that having been in front of others - Severin undid the clasp of Tyranus's cape, and then ripped his tunic, and his trousers. Yan and Severus both growled, aroused by the heat in Severin's eyes and the passion of that wild, animal gesture. Then Tyranus crushed Severin's mouth to his, their cocks pressed together, and Severin took both their cocks in his hand, stroking them slowly.

After a moment of kissing Tyranus and stroking their cocks together, Severin turned his face to grin at Severus. "Well?" he teased. "Aren't you going to get back to work?"

Severus gestured to them. They came to a stone table near one of the openings in the cave with a view of the sea, and where there were large fan-shaped Force crystals, producing the most intense glow of the crystals