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Wedding Bells and Heads Are Ringing

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“You can't have a banshee bird sing while you walk down the aisle. That's stupid.”

“It’s better than your idea to get married on top of a moving starship!”

Hal paused at the sound of the young voices arguing back and forth behind the speeder shed, hydrospanner still in hand. The family’s old but serviceable transport had been acting up over the past week and Nyshe had asked him to look it over during one of his days off from work at CorSec. Hal wasn’t sure what exactly his wife expected him to accomplish; he’d never as mechanically inclined as others. Still, he’d been at work for a few hours now, methodically checking over all the different parts of the vehicle when the children had interrupted him.

Suppressing a chuckle, Hal quietly set the hydrospanner down and stretched out comfortably underneath the floating speeder to listen.

“What are you going to wear?”

That sounded like little Keylara Chicri. Her family lived next door and she and Corran were in the same class in school. Hal was pretty sure Nyshe had mentioned a few weeks ago that the little girl’s older sister was getting married; she was much better at keeping up with the local goings-on than he was.

Well, then it was no wonder little Lara had weddings on her mind. What was amusing was how willing Corran was to go along with the topic. His son was currently obsessed with child actor Garik Loran’s latest holodrama, The Black Bantha. It was pure Imperial propaganda and not something Hal and Nysha would normally have let him watch but his class had gone to see it as a field trip and that was that.

“I’m gunna be in a CorSec uniform!” Corran sounded very enthusiastic. Hal wished he could see his face. “Cause I’m going to be a CorSec officer like Daddy and Grandfather!”

Lara giggled. “Mommy says CorSec uniforms are ‘very fine ’. She giggled a lot, too.” Lara paused. If Hal closed his eyes he could see the eagerness in the little human girl's face. “Ask me! Ask me now!”

Corran let out a soft huff. “Okay, what are you going to wear at your wedding?”

“I’m gunna wear a big poofy green dress with yellow flowers all over it. It’ll have biiiig sleeves and I’ll wear yellow and green gloves and crystal high heel shoes . I’ll have a really long veil that a baby bantha is going to carry for me while I walk down the aisle. And when I get to the end; it’ll turn into starlight and me and my husband will fly up into the air until we reach the mountains.”

There was a brief pause.

“Will it be a black bantha cub?” There it was, Hal mused. In the end, everything circled back to The Black Bantha.

“Yeah! Like we saw in the holofilm!” Lara giggled again. “I’m gonna marry Garik Loran,” she declared. “And when we get to the mountains we’ll find the bantha cub’s mother and we’ll save it and bring it back home with us so the baby cub isn't sad anymore.”

“That sounds really neat. I’m glad you’ll find the mommy bantha. The part in the holo where the baby black bantha is all alone and crying makes me sad.”

“Me too.”

There was another moment of silence. Hal softly laughed and propped his hands behind his head. This was far more enjoyable than continuing to search for whatever fault was causing the speeder’s anti-theft alarm to randomly start sounding.

“Who are you going to marry?” Lara finally asked, breaking up the silence.

Corran took his time answering. “She’s, um, she's going to be starship captain. She’ll be really pretty with black hair and brown eyes. And she’s really, really smart and can fight like Garik Loren and fly a spaceship.” There was another pause. “Her name is Myra and we’ll get married on a big spaceship that we freed. We’ll make wedding rings from the ship.”

Something about the sudden seriousness in his young son’s voice caught Hal’s attention. His words tickled something within the security officer that he’d worked for decades to suppress. Was Corran Force sensitive after all? Had he just had a vision? What else could have triggered Hal’s own sensitivity when he’d been forced for so long to pretend he hadn’t grown up a Jedi?

The sudden reawakening within Hal brought with it a flash of memory, the sudden echo of loss, pain, broken - the death of his father and Jedi master - that was as powerful and soul shattering as on the day it actually happened.

Hal instinctively started to curl up into himself, only to hit his head on the underside of the speeder. He fell limp on the floor of the shed clutching at his head, feeling a trickle of blood under his fingers.

Small footsteps suddenly sounded in the small space. “Daddy?” Corran’s voice was anxious as he reacted to Hal’s sudden emotional turmoil. Force sensitivity is was, then. Damn it. He’d hoped it would skip Corran. The galaxy was far too dangerous for beings like them.

“I’m alright,” Hal called out in a reassuring voice, concentrating on pulling his scattered wits back together “I just hit my head on the speeder.” Carefully, he wiggled out from under the hovering speeder and slowly sat up.

“Daddy, you’re bleeding!” Corran looked horrified and just for a moment, it almost seemed as though Hal’s shirt was soaked in dark red blood, his eyes empty, and body still. Then, the moment passed. Frightened, Corran flung himself at his father, wrapping small arms around his solid, comforting presence.

“I’ll be alright,” Hal reassured him, patting him on the back as he cradled his son to his chest. He also reached out carefully with his mind, trying to calm Corran’s fright.

“Mr. Horn?”

Hal looked up. Kylara was standing at door of the shed, peering fearfully around the frame.

“Just a bump on the head,” Hal responded. He reached out with the Force and gave the little girl’s mind a gentle nudge. “I’ll be just fine. You should probably head on home, though.”

Kylara gave him a small nod and waved goodbye. “I’ll see you in class tomorrow,” she said to Corran then turned and walked away, heading for the small gate that connected their yards.

With a soft sigh, Hal hefted Corran in his arms and hoisted himself up off the floor. He was going to have to figure out how to talk to Nyshe about this. In the meantime…

“What did you and Lara do today?” he asked Corran.

The small boy peered at Hal for a moment before answering. “Lara wanted to plan out our weddings,” he informed Hal with great solemnity.

“You and Lara are getting married?” Hal teased. “How exciting!”

“Daddy!” Corran wailed, kicking his feel slightly. “We’re marrying other people!”

“Ooh,” Hal responded. He grinned at Corran as they reached the house. “Tell me all about it.”