‘A Vision of Missing Moments’ - Chapter 5  (back to chapter one)

By Angela Jade - angela@yavin4.free-online.co.uk - constructive criticism and happy thoughts gratefully received ... please don’t flame me!

Set directly after Chapter 4, just after ‘Vision of the Future’ by Timothy Zahn

Main characters - Mara and Luke; cameos from Wedge and Iella Antilles (yes, he got married), Streen.

Rated - NC-17 - graphic sex scene coming up. Don’t tell me you don’t like this sort of thing, just don’t read it in the first place!

Disclaimer - all these characters belong to Mr. Lucas, Mr. Zahn, and Mr. Stackpole (I love you guys!). I write about them as a form of flattery - please don’t sue. I’m making no money from this.

Summary - breaking the news to the students!!

Written January 2000

Chapter 5 - the Academy

They reached the academy just before dawn and settled the shuttle on the landing grid, as quiet a landing as Mara could manage. She followed Luke through the deserted hallways of the Massassi temple towards his room. Once inside, they closed the door behind them, giggling like a couple of schoolkids.
‘When are you going to tell your students about me,’ asked Mara. ‘I can’t stay in here forever.’
‘Don’t see why not. I could bring you food ...’ Luke managed to dodge as Mara tried to smack his butt. ‘Okay, okay; I’ll tell them at breakfast.’

‘Tell them before breakfast. I would like to eat at some point.’

He pulled her in for a kiss. ‘Breakfast’s not for another two hours. What are we going to do until then?’

‘I am going to get all these tangles out of my hair,’ replied Mara. ‘And you are going to contact Wedge.’

‘That won’t take two hours.’

Mara smiled and kissed his nose. ‘We’ll see.’ She pulled a folding comb from one of the many pockets on her flightsuit, settled herself onto Luke’s bed, then started methodically working her way through her hair.

Luke sat in front of the comm unit he had recently installed in his room and keyed in a request for the local time at the squadron base on Coruscant. Early evening. He keyed in Wedge’s home number on a scrambled frequency. Iella’s face appeared on the screen, smiling when she recognised Luke.

‘Hi, Luke. How are you these days? We haven’t seen you for months.’

‘Hi, Iella. I’ve been a bit busy.’

Iella laughed. ‘Are you ever not busy?’

Luke shrugged, smiling. ‘Occasionally. Is the old man about?’

Wedge’s face appeared over her shoulder. ‘Less of the ‘old’, Luke. What’s up?’

‘Does something have to be up before I call you?’

‘Usually, yes. You haven’t lost another student, have you?’

‘That was almost funny, Wedge.’ Luke smiled. ‘I just thought I’d let you know ... I’m getting married.’

Iella squealed in delight.

‘You old rogue,’ said Wedge. ‘You kept that quiet.’

‘Who’s the lucky lady?’ asked Iella.

‘Mara Jade,’ replied Luke.

Wedge raised his eyebrows. ‘Mara? Wow! How long has this been going on?’

Luke shrugged. ‘Long enough.’

‘And watch what you say, Antilles,’ Mara shouted from across the room. ‘I’m right here.’

‘Hi, Mara!’ Wedge called back. ‘He finally saw sense, then.’

‘Anyway,’ interrupted Luke, ‘I was wondering if there was any chance you could send Corran over for a quick visit. I’m making some changes at the Academy, and I could use his support.’

‘I’ll have to check, but I’m sure I can fix it somehow.’ He paused. ‘Luke, is this news to be kept quiet?’

Luke nodded. ‘At the moment, yes. Leia’s going to make an announcement soon. After that it’s a free-for-all. Tell Corran, though. I’m sure he’ll be pleased.’

Mara had come up behind him and put her arms round his neck. ‘Maybe he’ll be jealous,’ she said. ‘Corran and I are very close.’

Luke looked at her incredulously. Mara smiled and ruffled his hair. ‘Teasing, farmboy.’

Iella and Wedge burst out laughing.

‘That’s right,’ said Luke. ‘Everyone make fun of the poor little Jedi.’ But he was smiling too.

‘I’ll send Corran as soon as I can,’ said Wedge, still grinning.

‘But only if you and Mara promise to come for a visit,’ said Iella. ‘You’re hardly ever on Coruscant these days.’

‘Give me a few weeks to sort out the Academy,’ replied Luke. ‘Then we’ll descend on you all.’

Iella shook her head. ‘Us four on the same planet at the same time? I’ll believe it when I see it.’

Luke put his hands on Mara’s arms, pulling her closer. ‘It’ll happen. And you can throw a big party when it does.’

Wedge raised an eyebrow. ‘We get to throw the party. Gee, thanks.’

Luke smiled. ‘Bye, Wedge.’

‘Bye, Luke,’ said Wedge.

Iella waved. ‘And Mara, go easy on him.’

Luke cut the transmission, then pulled Mara round until she sat in his lap. ‘That wasn’t very nice, Jade.’

She raised an eyebrow at him. ‘You were never very nice to me on my previous visits to Yavin, Skywalker. In fact, sometimes you were downright rude. Corran was the only one who ever made me feel welcome; that’s why I said we were close.’

Luke hung his head, unable to meet her gaze. ‘I know. I’m sorry. I just felt...’

Mara shifted her position until she was straddling him, then she lifted his chin until he looked at her. ‘Just don’t let it happen again.’ She leaned in and kissed him passionately, her hair falling forward as his hands crept up her back. When they parted she rested her forehead against his, looking into his eyes. ‘How long until breakfast?’

Luke swallowed, breathing a little more heavily. ‘Best part of two hours.’

She ran her tongue over her lips. ‘Just time for a quickie then.’ She could feel his hardness pressing against her through her clothing, and wiggled slightly in encouragement.

Luke closed his eyes for a moment; when he opened them again, they were dark with passion. ‘Maybe if you’d done this before, I wouldn’t have ignored you.’

Mara kissed him again, pulling slightly at his top lip as she pulled away. ‘Maybe if you’d given me even a tiny bit of encouragement I would have done this before now.’
He stood up then, easily supporting Mara’s weight, and walked over to the bed. Turning round, he toppled over, pulling her on top of him. ‘Is this encouragement enough?’
She started pulling his shirt off, leaning down to kiss his chest. ‘It’ll do.’
As she worked her way lower, Luke groaned. ‘Gods, Mara, I love you.’
She moved back up, straddling his stomach and leaning down so that her hair brushed his face. ‘I love you, too. And if you ever leave me I’ll hunt you down and kill you like old yellow-eyes wanted me to.’
He pulled her in for a kiss that seemed to go on for ever. ‘How about we leave that bit out of the wedding vows?’
‘I don’t know,’ said Mara, ‘I think it sounds quite good. Encourages commitment and all that.’
Luke’s hands were running over her thighs. ‘Are you going to get undressed any time soon?’
She rubbed herself up and down his stomach. ‘Maybe.’
‘Mara, don’t tease. It isn’t nice.’ The fasteners on her flightsuit started undoing themselves.
Mara held it closed. ‘You’re cheating again, Skywalker. And that isn’t nice either.’ She smiled at his frown, then climbed off the bed and removed her boots and clothes. When she turned around, Luke was lying on the bed, gloriously naked. She hadn’t even heard him move. Mara jumped on top of him, knocking the wind out of him. ‘Sorry.’ She kissed him deeply, then took him inside her, biting her bottom lip to stop from yelling.
‘Don’t you ever need foreplay?’ asked Luke through gritted teeth.
‘Not with you, no.’ Mara started moving up and down, kissing his chest.
‘Ah, so there have been others.’
Still moving, Mara met his gaze, wondering what he meant. ‘Well, there was this blue guy with red eyes...’
His hands roved over her body. ‘I’m becoming immune to your teasing, Jade.’ He felt her inner muscles tighten around him and she started biting gently at his chest and neck. Luke struggled to control his breathing.
‘You’re not immune to this, though,’ she said.
He reached down to caress her clit. ‘And you’re not immune to this.’
She started shuddering and realised she couldn’t form a coherent reply.
He rolled them both over, kissing her frantically as their bodies entwined and nature’s rhythm moved faster and faster, bringing them both to a climax. He collapsed on top of her, both of them struggling for oxygen. When he finally had the strength to push himself up on his elbows, he gazed into her emerald eyes and was concerned to see two tears roll from the corners of her eyes. ‘I didn’t hurt you, did I, Mara?’
She shook her head and sniffed. ‘No.’ She sniffed again.
‘Then what’s wrong? Why are you crying?’
Her hands reached up to caress his face, pushing the sweaty hair away from his eyes. ‘I don’t really know. I’m happy, I guess. Telling Wedge and Iella ... well, the more people we tell, the more real it all becomes. It’s a bit ... well, I feel like we’re losing control.’
He kissed her. ‘Should we slow down a bit? Maybe postpone the wedding?’
She pulled him in for a tight hug. ‘Just don’t even go there, Skywalker. I’ve got you now and I’m damned if I’m going to let you go.’

Half an hour before breakfast was due to start, Luke went to find Streen. He wanted to make sure everyone was in the dining hall to hear his announcement, and for some reason, Luke felt Streen should hear the news first, delivered personally. He’d already asked Streen to run the Academy in his absence.

He found the old man waiting, leaning against the doorway of his room. Luke hid his surprise and bowed almost imperceptibly towards Streen. ‘You were expecting me.’

Streen’s bow was deeper. ‘I was.’ He indicated towards his room. ‘Will you join me for a few moments, Master?’

Luke entered the room, turned and waited for the door to slide shut behind Streen. Luke could tell that he wasn’t terribly happy about something.

Streen finally turned to face him. ‘You have something you wish to tell me.’ It was a statement, not a question.

Luke nodded. Streen was never one to beat around the bush. ‘I’m getting married.’

A flicker of a smile crossed Streen’s face, before the stern look returned. ‘I’m glad to hear it, after what you’ve been projecting this morning.’

Luke coloured slightly, and swallowed the lump forming in his throat. ‘What do you mean?’

‘Luke, how long is it since you’ve had a woman in your rooms? Have you forgotten how to shield?’

Streen spoke gently, but the rebuke still stung Luke. ‘Oops.’

‘Yes. Oops.’ Streen sighed. ‘Master Skywalker...’

Luke closed his eyes and sighed. ‘Luke, please.’

Streen nodded. ‘Luke, you live in a building full of force-sensitives...’

‘I know. I know.’ Luke grimaced. ‘I guess I just forgot. It has been a while.’

Finally, Streen let a little smile cross his lips. ‘Well, I suppose the students will get over it with just a few cold showers.’ He crossed his arms. ‘Do I know your intended?’

Luke met Streen’s gaze, trying to gauge his reaction. ‘Mara Jade.’

Luke could have sworn Streen’s smile got just a little wider. ‘Mara. Hmmm. I bet that will come as a surprise to many people.’

‘But not to you, Streen.’

The old man shook his head. ‘Not really. There’s always been something about the two of you ... I could never quite put my finger on it.’

Luke regarded his friend. ‘You never cease to amaze me. I’m glad you agreed to run this place. I can’t think of anyone else more suited.’

Streen bowed at the compliment. ‘Are you going to announce your engagement?’

‘Leia will announce it on Coruscant. But I thought I might tell the students at breakfast this morning, assuming we can get them all there at the same time.’

‘That’s easily arranged,’ replied Streen. He frowned slightly. ‘Some of them won’t like it, though.’

‘More than they don’t like me virtually dismantling the Academy?’ Luke shook his head. ‘I don’t think Mara and I getting married is going to eclipse that.’

‘Perhaps not.’ Streen smiled again. ‘I’m happy for you, Luke. Really I am.’

Luke stepped forward to clasp Streen’s hand. ‘Thanks. Your support means a lot to me.’

‘I’ll go round up the troops. I take it Mara will be joining us.’

‘After the announcement,’ Luke replied. ‘We thought it better I tell them myself.’ He moved towards the door, then paused and turned back towards Streen. ‘You saw this coming?’

Streen merely shrugged. ‘Go back to your lady, Master. I’ll see you at breakfast. Then we’ll see how many surprises our students can take in one week.’

When he got back to his room, he found Mara digging around in her flight bag, tossing clothes and toiletries all over the bed. She looked up when she heard him come in. ‘How did it go?’

Luke smiled. ‘Very well, I think.’ He frowned at the mess. ‘What are you looking for?’

‘Something to wear. I’m not making my grand entrance in this.’ She tugged disdainfully at the fabric of her flightsuit.

Luke pulled her into his arms and kissed her gently. ‘Looks fine to me.’ He frowned slightly. ‘Do you think I should get changed?’

Mara held him at arms length and looked him up and down. He was wearing combat pants and a loose shirt, a  brown jedi robe on top. ‘Definitely. You want something that conveys authority.’ She pursed her lips. ‘Wear your blacks.’

‘I thought you said black is boring.’

‘It is. But they’re more likely to respect you, and that’s what’s important now.’ Mara smiled. ‘Besides, you do look kind of cute in them, once in a while.’

Luke shook his head. ‘Will I ever understand you?’

Mara pushed him gently towards his wardrobe. ‘Not if I have anything to do with it.’

Even before he reached the dining hall, Luke could hear the buzz of conversation. Many of the students had spotted the shuttle on the landing grid and the empty chair next to Luke’s usual place at the table, and now speculation was at the top of everyone’s agenda. Of course, thought Luke, some of them had probably figured out what was going on because of his little indiscretion that morning. He raised his chin slightly before he walked calmly into the hall. Silence descended.

The hall was packed fit to burst. Streen was nothing if not thorough. Luke made his way to the table at the far end of the room and stood behind his chair, his hands resting on the chair-back, his eyes scanning the assembled students. The silence was almost palpable. ‘Thank you all for coming at such short notice.’ He noticed Streen lean back slightly in his chair, the flicker of a smile playing across his lips. ‘There is something I would like you to know before it’s announced on Coruscant. I’m getting married.’

//That was short and to the point//  Luke could hear Mara’s voice over their Force-bond.

The noise level in the hall had risen again, but only slightly, as students digested this piece of news.

Luke raised his voice slightly. ‘To Mara Jade.’

Stunned silence. Shock and incredulity on almost every face he looked at. He would have laughed, except that this reaction was really beginning to annoy him.

Tionne found her voice first. ‘The Mara Jade?’

Luke turned slowly to face her. ‘You know of another?’

Tionne looked mortified. ‘No.’

‘Does this have anything to do with the closure of the Academy?’ Luke recognised the speaker as Dumat Synnar, a human from Coruscant. Dumat had been boasting to his friends that he was to study under ‘Master Skywalker’ and had not been in the least bit happy when Luke had burst that bubble two days previously.

‘It has absolutely nothing to do with the changes taking place here. And I will remind you, Mr. Synnar, that the Academy is not closing, merely down-sizing.’

Dumat glowered at him. Luke met his gaze for a moment before continuing. ‘For security reasons, this news must not leave the building. To that end, there will be no private comm-transmissions allowed until after the announcement has been made on Coruscant.’

The babble of conversation started up again. Many students were clearly unhappy.

Luke held up his hands in a conciliatory gesture. ‘I’m sorry if this is inconvenient. You can still use the holonet, but you must be supervised by a member of staff. I’m sure I can trust you all to be discreet but my sister thinks otherwise and has insisted on these measures. Now, if there are no more questions, perhaps we can finish breakfast.’ He moved to the serving table behind him, filled a plate with fruits and breads, and grabbed a glass of juice. When he turned back, Streen was standing, his arms folded across his chest. Luke sat down and waited for the older man to speak.

‘I would like to be the first here to congratulate Master Skywalker on his engagement,’ said Streen, and started clapping. He was soon joined by everyone else in the room, some with more enthusiasm than others. Luke smiled and nodded his thanks to Streen, who bowed in return, a definite twinkle in his eyes. When Luke began to eat, everyone else returned to their food and the noise level went back up to deafening.

//Can I come in yet?//  Luke fought the urge to smile when he heard Mara’s voice in his head.

//Sure. I think it’s safe enough now// he returned.

//Think?! That’s not very reassuring. Okay, brace yourself//

Mara stepped through the doorway and almost reeled back because of the shock being projected by the students. She hiked up her barriers a bit and started a slow deliberate walk towards Luke, who was studiously eating and not paying her the slightest attention. Every other set of eyes in the room followed her every move. She was wearing a form-fitting dark blue sleeveless jumpsuit with a short black jacket and knee-high black boots. Her hair hung loose and, just below the line of her jacket, her lightsaber swung at her belt. Mara realised she didn’t know most of the students, but those she recognised received a smile or a nod. A trail of whispers followed in her wake.

Luke finally looked up and smiled. //You look gorgeous//  ‘Good morning, my dear. You’re just in time for breakfast.’

Mara smiled back. ‘Thank you.’ She made her way to the serving table and helped herself to a glass of juice before sitting in the vacant chair next to Luke. When she realised all eyes were still upon her, she raised an eyebrow at her audience. ‘Is no-one hungry this morning?’ Everyone suddenly found their own plate of food very interesting, although many still cast surreptitious glances in Luke and Mara’s direction.

Mara looked at the pile of food on Luke’s plate. ‘You’re never going to eat all that, are you?’

‘I’ve got a run this morning,’ he replied. ‘Got to keep my strength up.’ He pushed the plate towards her. ‘Feel free.’

She eyed the food suspiciously. ‘What are those blue things? I haven’t seen them before.’

‘Sort of like plums,’ replied Luke. ‘We found them growing south of here and planted a couple of trees in the garden.’ He held one out to her. ‘They’re quite nice. Try it.’

‘Have you got a thing about blue food?’ She bit into the fruit while Luke still held it and automatically licked the juice that ran down his hand.

//Mara// he sent //we’re not alone//

//Damn// Mara blushed slightly and took the plum from his hand before handing him a napkin. //Sorry. Forgot//

He smiled at her as he wiped his hand. //That’s OK. I rather enjoyed it//

//At least you’re shielding a bit better now//

The smile fell from Luke’s face. //You knew about that? Why didn’t you say something?//

Mara bit into another plum, her eyes twinkling mischievously. //Just making my presence felt//

Luke’s gaze met hers. //You did that alright. Some of them may never recover//

As Mara struggled not to laugh out loud, Luke said, ‘do you want to join me on our run?’

Mara shook her head. ‘I think they’ve had enough of a floor show this morning,’ she whispered.

‘What are you going to do, then?’

‘I’ve got a mountain of business calls to make. Have you got a halfway-decent computer here yet?’

Luke nodded. ‘Use my office. I’ll clear it with Tionne.’

Mara finished off the last piece of fruit on the plate. ‘Fine. I’ll see you later, then.’ She stood up and gave his shoulder a gentle squeeze. ‘Enjoy your run.’

As she made her way to the door, she heard Luke in her head again. //The view from the back is even better// Several of the students wondered why she was smiling and shaking her head as she left the room.


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