Pairing/Characters: Luke/Leia, mentions of Han, Chewie, Vader
Word count: 3310
Written for: celebcorps
Request: Something with them ending a romantic relationship, due to either finding out they're related, or simple circumstance, against the both of their wills - for the greater good/it's the right thing to do/etc.
Summary: Leia finds that sometimes life changes faster than her feelings.
Warnings: Ummm, it's Luke/Leia?
The silvery planet hung low in the sky, its reflected light seeping through the great trees of the forest moon. From inside her bedroll, Leia Organa watched Endor rise, clutching her blanket in defense against the crisp night air. The scent of the giant trees wafted delicately around her, in contrast to the much less subtle sound of snoring from both Chewie and Han. It was because of Chewie that the three of them were sleeping out on the ground. However much an Ewok might look like a miniature Wookiee to human eyes, Chewie saw no such resemblance and loudly refused to sleep in the Ewok huts. Something about the smell.
Even with a rock poking her in the back, Leia didn't mind sleeping outdoors. It reminded her of the times her father had taken her camping in the mountains of Alderaan, the serenity of the wilderness a welcome escape from the pressures of official life. The same peacefulness surrounded her now, and she tried to let it drown out the roar of thoughts in her head. She should be celebrating: the second Death Star had been destroyed today, and the Emperor had finally fallen. Of course there had been a celebration, the Alliance crews drinking and dancing and cheering next to their Ewok hosts. And while Leia had smiled and cheered with the rest of them, at the same time she couldn't help thinking that this was just the beginning. That so many obstacles remained to restoring the Republic. The Grand Moffs who might urge the headless Empire into continued combat. The sly members of Palpatine's Inner Circle, one of whom could prove crafty enough to assume the throne. The unsettled debates among the Alliance High Command about what the New Republic should look like. The unknown response of...
Leia squeezed her eyes shut against the endless voice in her head and rolled over onto her side. The rock that had been in her back now pointed into her hip. It was no use; she was not going to fall asleep. There was one thing that might relieve her tension enough to allow her to relax, a comfort she had turned to more than a few times when the stresses of war had become too much. The times when she thought she might die, when they all might. The times when she had turned to Luke.
She glanced over at Han's sleeping form. She shouldn't be thinking what she was thinking. He'd finally declared his love for her after leaving her guessing for what seemed like an eternity. She'd felt like a fool blurting out her feelings, only to have him respond with a cryptic, "I know." In all the long months of his carbonite imprisonment she'd wondered if he didn't respond in kind because he didn't feel the same, or because he was just Han. Even after rescuing him from Jabba, when the sight of him real and unfrozen in her arms had freed her emotions to make the declaration again, he'd been silent on the subject. So to have him at last say that he felt the same should have been the event that finally unlocked all of her to him. Instead, she felt nervous and awkward and not entirely sure what to do.
Their whole relationship had been like that, him pursuing and she retreating, then her coming closer only to have him back away. Their mutual attraction was strong and enduring, but it also had a mutable quality that unnerved her. That element of uncertainty had kept her from ever giving all of herself to him, unlike the way that she had with Luke. Because Luke made her feel warm and safe in a way she didn't understand, and in her moments of greatest need and fear he'd always been there. She'd drawn strength from his steadiness and faithful acceptance of her quirks, enough to overcome whatever no-win position the war had put them in. He'd never asked more from her than that, seemingly satisfied to know that he was the source of her renewed vigor. She needed a dose of that courage right now, to face the monumental task of recreating the Republic.
She threw off her blanket and sat up to pull on her Ewok-made boots, moving silently to make sure she didn't wake Han or Chewie. Of course, there was another reason she shouldn't be seeking this particular comfort from Luke, but she'd only known that fact for less than a day. It still seemed surreal that he was her brother. However much it explained the strength of connection between them, however much she knew in her heart that it was true, she wasn't ready to give up what she'd shared with Luke. Not yet.
Using Endor's light she crept out of the clearing and towards the Ewok huts. She tried to remember where she'd last seen Luke, before the victory party had died down and everyone had slipped off to bed. She remembered him clearly at Vader's funeral pyre, but after that she could only recall seeing him move phantom-like through the crowd. He was the hero once again, the architect of the Emperor's demise, but he'd seemed unable to celebrate that accomplishment with the rest of the Alliance.
Thinking he might have ended up with his pilot buddies, she took the path towards the hut where she'd last seen the Rogues. She wasn't even half way there when she started to have the nagging feeling that she was going the wrong way. She paused and stood perfectly still, trying to pinpoint that feeling. She realized she did know where Luke was, in the same way she'd known that he hadn't died when the second Death Star exploded. Turning, she followed the faint tingle in her mind, ignoring the fact that this ability was probably further evidence of their familial bond.
She traced him to a spot outside of the Ewok encampment, in a small clearing like the one Han and Chewie had chosen. She thought she had been commando quiet, but when she came upon him Luke was laying on his side, propped up on one elbow with his head in his hand. He'd obviously known she was coming.
"You're sure up late," he said from the ground.
She ducked her head."I needed to see you."
He sat up cross legged and extended his arm towards the now open section of his bedroll. She sat down across from him, the beginnings of a knot in her stomach now that they were face to face. Tenatively she put her hand on his knee, rubbed it. "I couldn't sleep. I thought maybe we could..."
Luke stared at her, seeming to catch her thought even though she didn't finish it. He shook his head. "We can't. Not anymore."
She should have known Luke would choose the right path. But he was so close, his body warm under her hand. "On Samar Prime, it's customary to learn about sex from your siblings."
He smiled. "We're not from Samar Prime."
Leia sighed, feeling dumb for her attempt at humor. In all their other encounters, she'd never voiced her feelings, assuming he felt the same amazing sense of peace and connection. But maybe he didn't. Maybe he didn't understand that this wasn't a foolish whim, but a need that started deep within her. "Don't you ever feel that when we're together everything's right in the universe? That when it's just you and me, that it's the only time that you can really be yourself? That it's the only place you really feel safe, no matter what?"
His face sagged and he dropped his head. He looked so forlorn that she knelt forward and kissed him chastely on the forehead. All the times she had used him to ease her mind, she'd never thought about what troubled him. She stroked his hair and kissed his forehead again, wanting to take away his pain. Suddenly his mouth seized hers with a kiss that was anything but chaste. She answered him with equal passion, yielding to the fervent probing of his tongue. She fumbled with the lacings on her blouse, eager to feel his touch. But when she placed his hand on her chest, he suddenly broke contact and pulled back.
His expression was flat and unreadable. "It could be like the first time."
She gazed at him, wishing he hadn't stopped. The taste of him was still on her lips. Like the first time. The first time hadn't really been a first time. They'd been trapped in the cargo hold of an Imperial freighter, their assignment to find out if the ship was carrying weapons to Ord Biniir. Just when they'd made a positive ID and were about to sprint back to the safety of the docking bay, the hold doors had slid shut, sealing them in. The room had darkened and then the security system activated, beams of red tracing over the floor. Unable to move or speak for fear of triggering the alarm, they'd sat in the dark, the sound of their breathing their only communication. Separated by stacks of crates filled with BlasTech E-11 rifles, they'd felt the ship launch and after that every second took them farther away from their Alliance comrades and deeper into the hands of the Empire. Sometime in the long hours of the journey, with nothing but apprehension in her gut, she'd slipped her hands beneath her clothing to help ease the tension. As she brought herself closer to climax, a moan slipped from her lips. She froze, mortified, until she heard an answering sigh from Luke and realized he was doing exactly the same thing. She imagined him, with his golden skin and blond hair, one hand grasping his erection. A shiver ran through her at the visual, and she escalated her fantasy to include what it might be like to kiss him, to caress him, to ride him. Once they reached Ord Biniir, they'd snuck out of the hold as it was being unloaded, stolen a ship, and managed to escape in the nick of time.
Locked in hyperspace on the way back, they hadn't spoken about the events in the hold, not then and not later. But six months after, their battered Alliance corvette had been chased down and surrounded by a fleet of Star Destroyers. The situation looked truly hopeless, and she resigned herself that it might be the end. But somehow Luke had managed to fly them free and she'd hugged him with joy once they were clear.
"Just like the last time," she'd said, and then she was reminded of what else had happened the last time. She looked up at Luke, wondering if he remembered, too. The smokey look in his eyes said he did, and she slowly ran her hand up his arm. That had been their real first time.
It was also the first time she'd experienced that sense of utter calm and peace that she so desperately wanted now. She didn't know if if she could find that same state without him, but it seemed he wasn't going to allow things to go quite that far. She pulled her arms out of her blouse, then stood to shrug off her dress. Sinking back to his bedroll, she puffed up his pillow and leaned against it. She could see his eyes glittering in the planet light. He sat motionless as she wriggled out of her panties.
She dipped one hand between her legs, her fingers moving lazily as she began to arouse herself. Being unable to touch him only intensified her desire and her other hand drifted up to one breast. She fixed her gaze on him, remembering times gone by. Luke's jaw clenched, and then he leaned forward, nudging her hand away from her breast with his head. She smiled, glad to see that he was only human after all, and not some sort of Jedi saint. His hair was silken against her neck, his tongue warm and textured against her taut nipples. Feather-light his hand landed on her inner thigh, moving slowly up from her knee towards her core. She opened her legs further, inviting him in. While his tongue traced exquisite circles on her breast, he pressed first one finger and then another inside her.
Arching into him, she resisted the temptation to let orgasm claim her. She wanted all of him, and she hoped he would abandon his objections. Instead his fingers pumped in time with flicks of his tongue, a relentless rhythm that left her moaning. For a moment he sat back, watching her, and just when she was about to beg him to return, he leaned forward again and reclaimed her. Her mind was filled with nothing but the feel of his tongue, the thrust of his fingers. Unable to hold back any longer, she gave up on him participating fully and quickened the pace of her own hand. Finding the edge almost immediately, she paused for a moment at the precipice and then tumbled into waves of pleasure.
Eyes closed and head rolled back, she floated in post-orgasmic languor, unable to protest when he withdrew his hand. There was a rustling noise and a faint clink of metal, and she fluttered open her eyes. It was the sound of Luke throwing off his clothes. Despite the considerable ribbing he took from his fellow pilots about his short stature, his body was lean and muscular, and there was nothing about him that required any apology.
He knelt again, his hands deftly sliding under her hips and angling her up. Her body slick and relaxed, he entered her in one smooth thrust. Already sated, she watched his face through half lidded eyes as he braced himself and rocked in and out of her. True to form he made no sound, the only evidence of his pleasure to be found in the quickening of his breath and the twitch of his lips. She put a hand to his arm and pulled him down. As he lowered his body to hers, she brought her legs over his back and ran her hands down to the rounded contours of his ass. She pressed her palms in the hollows of the muscle and wordlessly encouraged him to thrust deeper. He complied, and soon his breath grew ragged. She held him tight as he pounded into her, not relaxing until he froze and she felt the heat of him flood into her.
Panting, Luke buried his face in her shoulder, and she stroked his hair as they both lay immobile, recovering. No longer warmed by their exertions, the night air quickly intruded, and using one arm Luke pulled his blanket over them. It was heavy and almost metallic smooth, a fabric unlike any she'd felt before. He settled his face back into the crook of her neck and she recognized that she was finally in that place that she'd so craved. Her mind was empty of worries, and she felt utterly at peace, soothed in a way that nothing else did. She could feel the thud of his heartbeat above her own, and the exhale of his breath on her skin was the most comforting thing she could imagine.
She realized they must have lain this close for months in the womb, separated only by a thin sheet of tissue. The sound of his heartbeat would have been her constant companion, as hers would have been to him. Her first touch would have come from him as they tumbled and swam next to each other. And as they lay entangled now she finally saw that the serenity she felt with Luke came because being with him took her back to before her earliest awareness. Because he really was her brother.
As if he read her thoughts he slipped out of her and rolled to the side, though he kept one arm across her belly. She clutched that arm to her, wanting him to know that she had no shame, no regrets. He kissed her shoulder in reply and she smiled in the dark. His body heat reflected off the metallic fabric of the blanket, making her luxuriously warm. She began to drift off and was almost asleep when Luke spoke softly into her ear.
"His last words were of you."
"Who?" she said, confused.
She stiffened reflexively and moved away. There was something in his tone that made it clear Luke wasn't talking about his father, but their father. Maybe this was why she'd been unable to fully accept Luke as her brother, because to do so meant admitting her tie to Vader as well. She wondered how long Luke had carried that knowledge, wondered when he been forced to trade the heroic father Kenobi had described for the horrifying truth. She had a childhood filled with happy memories to protect her from it, but Luke had only an endless hunger for a father he never knew. Chastened, she relented and nestled back against him.
"There was still good in him," Luke whispered. "He killed the Emperor and sacrificed himself to save me."
She blinked, letting Luke's words soak in. This was the first Luke had spoken about had happened on the Death Star, other than to say that the Emperor was dead. She'd seen the reverence with which he'd treated Vader's body, and now she had a glimmer of why. But Luke's experiences were not her experiences. "I can't..."
"I know," he said, stroking her arm. "But he wanted me to tell you. I wanted to tell you."
She nodded. Who else could he tell? Who else would understand except the one person who shared the same terrible heritage? She couldn't give Luke the response he wanted, but she could offer a kindness, a kindness that she had to admit was probably true. "I think he must have cared for you a great deal to have done what you said."
To her relief, Luke seemed satisfied with that, and laid his head back against the pillow. She lay awake for a few minutes, holding on to the feel of his body next to hers before she, too, succumbed to sleep.
The sun had risen only enough to dim the stars, but the change was enough to rouse Leia. During the night Luke had rolled onto his stomach, but was still fast asleep beside her. Being careful not to disturb him, she slipped out of bed and quickly pulled on her clothes. She needed to be back in the other camp before Han awoke. This was something he'd never understand, nor was she sure she could explain.
Luke mumbled something below her and she reached down to snug the blanket around him. In the pinking light of dawn she saw that the blanket wasn't a blanket at all, but a black cloak. Vader's cloak. Spread out, it assumed the shape that had trailed after him in life, except that now it terminated not in the ominous helmet, but in Luke's blond head. For a fleeting moment she wondered if that was what Vader had looked like under the mask. Maybe someday she'd find the courage to ask Luke what else he'd seen on the Death Star.
The light coming fast now, she crept down the path, but Luke's voice stopped her in her tracks.
"I'll miss you," he said.
She swallowed. It was an odd thing to say since they saw each other often, and might see each other even more now that the war was over. But she knew exactly what he meant. Everything was different and there was no going back. "I'll miss you, too," she said, and walked on towards Han.