It shouldn’t have been particularly surprising to Han that Leia was still furious. There were a few different ways in which Leia expressed anger. First, and most obvious, was when she enjoyed yelling at whomever it was that had made her angry. This could entail frustrated annoyance or near-screaming, depending on the severity of the infraction. Han rather enjoyed riling her up to different degrees of irate behavior; he later realized not so much because he liked making her mad, but rather he just liked seeing evidence that she could actually feel anything. He sure as hell couldn’t get her to admit she liked him at all, or anyone else for that matter, so he might as well irritate her if that was the only way to garner some sort of reaction.
The second way, which was being demonstrated now, was total silence. Han had been around her enough to be able to notice the tension on her face while she no-doubt seethed below the surface of that icy exterior. Her teeth had been clenched so hard her jaw probably hurt. He’d somehow managed to pry the datacard out of her iron grip as she balled her fists tightly, likely digging her fingernails deeply into the palms of her hands.
To be fair, Han wasn’t thrilled about the idea of a marriage counseling retreat either, but he had been on all kinds of planets and they all had their own sets of rules and in his experience you were always better off to just do what they said if you were to get what you wanted. He could think of worse things they’d make them do if they were to banish this ‘marriage’ from their records. He knew of one or two planets where the husband was put to death. Knowing Leia, she probably would’ve preferred that option. It would’ve been much less painful… for her.
Leia marched her short legs determinedly back to the Falcon and Han actually had a hard time catching up while he tried to read the specifics of what this counseling would entail. Gods, why didn’t the woman have a sense of humor about this? He could think of dozens of things he wanted to say to rile her up even further. Unfortunately, he could tell that she was so close to the boiling point that one wrong remark and she’d be widowed a lot quicker than she’d have to wait to be divorced.
So for now, he had to be practical. “All right, Leia, this isn’t so bad. It’s a pretty lengthy session but I’m sure in that amount of time we can convince them that we can’t stand each other and shouldn’t be married.”
She stopped on the sidewalk, pretending to look in the window of a local shop. “Good. How long will it take?”
“Uh… a month.”
Han could’ve sworn that anyone within a kilometer radius jumped at her startled reply. “Yeah, that’s what it says. Would you rather we stayed together for a year? Don’t forget, we had that option, we can walk right on over there and change our minds.”
She looked beyond frustrated, and Han knew the feeling – though for different reasons. “Fine. Let’s just get this thing over with and never speak of it again. Wait, how are we going to stay here for a month? They’re expecting us back in a few days.”
“Good question.” At least she was starting to talk rationally. “Maybe we can convince ‘em that we’re working on some other credits we might be able to get our hands on but it’s going to take some extensive intel work.”
Leia heaved a sigh. “Maybe. But I don’t want to lie to them.”
“Forgive me for being the one to bring this up, sweetheart, but you’re already lying to them.”
“That’s different. We’re actually going to do what we said we were going to do, we just happened to have some personal business to attend to while we were here.”
“I don’t see a lot of difference. Actually, the bigger problem now is that I think we’re gonna have to tell Chewie.”
Her eyes got wide and he was once again more than slightly insulted at how horrified she was at the fact that they were married and that someone might actually find out about it. “Come on, sweetheart. You know he’s just gonna keep asking questions. And he’s the most loyal being you’re ever gonna meet in your life. We can trust him with anything.” Can’t trust him not to make jokes and find the whole thing incredibly amusing, though…
She gave him that annoyed look that told him she knew he was right, and she hated that. “Fine. But I swear, Solo, if anyone else finds out…”
“Hey, will you stop it? You’ve been angry with me since this happened and I haven’t made any of the kinds of remarks you would’ve expected, have I? I’m gettin’ a little tired of tiptoeing around you like you can’t handle a slightly uncomfortable situation. If you don’t stop acting like this then I’m actually going to give you a reason to be mad at me.”
She snatched the data card out of his hand and said tightly, “Fine. So when does this nonsense start?”
Han swallowed, slightly relieved that she had backed down but not quite ready to believe she had calmed down completely. “Tomorrow.”
“How convenient,” she said sarcastically. “So we go talk to these therapists all day and see if they can save our marriage?”
“That seems to be the gist, yeah. There’s some group stuff with other couples, it looks like.”
“Oh, that will be fun. We can see if we can win the least likely to stay together award.”
Han thought he saw a hint of a smile on her face at her almost-humorous remark. “I think we’ve got that one locked, Princess.”
“No problem,” she agreed as her brown eyes finally met his. Yes, she was definitely starting to come around. “I’ll just tell them how you constantly tease and berate me, and you never call me by my real name.”
“Well, maybe I can tell ‘em, Your Worshipfulness, how you call me names and talk down to me like some sort of subordinate.”
“Well, maybe if you acted like a respectable human being I’d treat you like one.”
“Oh, yeah? Well-“
She cut him off. “I think we should save our arguments for when we have an audience.”
He hated when she got the last word. At least this would give him some time to come up with a few more suitable insults. Maybe this therapy thing would be kind of fun. Might give him a chance to say all the things he’d wanted to say and have a professional confirm his innate belief that the woman was completely out of her mind.
“Let’s get back to the ship,” Han said, signaling for her to follow as he started walking again. “We’ve got to break the news to Chewie.”