Here is another submission for the "Confessions" challenge, this one by Statsgrandma. It doesn't 100% fall within the guidelines of the challenge, as it was asked that these take place between Truce at Bakura and Tatooine Ghost, but "rules" were meant to be broken and as long as a challenge inspired something, I'm ok with it. So, here it is:
DAWN IS A LONG WAY OFF
The shield doors have just been closed.
The despair I feel is almost as deep as the loss of my home planet.
Han left several hours ago to find Luke. There's been no communication since from either of them. The night is very dark and a snowstorm is blowing about in heavy wind. The portable supplies Han left with are far too flimsy for a night such as this.
I wish Luke hadn't checked out the meteor he saw. There's a lot of meteor activity here on Hoth, according to General Riekkan. Luke could have headed in any direction.
Luke's a dear friend to me, and friends are not something I have many of here at Echo Base. He's like a brother to me. I hear the gossip; I'm known as the Ice Princess, not to mention other names that are significantly less complimentary and more obscene.
Here's where it gets complicated.
The Alliance heavily rewarded him for his part in retrieving the documents pertinent to the Death Star, in the hopes that we could find a weakness. Fortunately, there was. The Imperials probably didn't consider small fighters when it was designed; with the Imperials, size is everything, and bigger is better.
We lost many fighters in that battle. And it didn't look good for Luke. He'd lost all his cover and his gunner. He needed all the help he could get from the Force. He got that. But the Force wouldn't have been much help had he not had someone to cover him -- and at the last moment, it appeared, in the unlikely form of the mercenary, arrogant pirate known as Han Solo.
I began to rethink my position on him, and in doing so, I made an alarming discovery: I was attracted to him.
I told myself, this is ridiculous. You've got a war to fight. And besides, most of the time he was as selfish as they came. But then he decided to stay on. I was embarrassingly relieved, but also more confused than ever.
If anyone ever needed the shirt that said 'I'm The One Your Mother Warned You About,' it would be him. I was a person with responsibilities. I made a commitment to the Alliance to serve, and it was a commitment that required all of my time and energy. I had no time to indulge in girlish crushes, and I was determined not to turn into a giggling, foolish stereotype. I'd always scorned grown women who could be turned to Bantha cream because of a man.
No way was I going that route.
And yet, earlier today, I heard him tell General Riekkan that he had to leave. I heard the conversation and my guts hit the floor as if the entire length of me had been sliced open.
What was he talking about? He'd said he was staying on! And now he said he's leaving. Yes, I understand that he owes money to some underworld major domo. But we can protect him. Doesn't he understand this? We can keep him from being murdered by what is likely some of the lowest of the lowlife in existence.
Of course, he was horribly rude to me after he finished telling the general and I became furious. I chased after him, and instead of telling him how I feel, which is something I'm not completely clear on yet, I argued with him and we insulted each other.
Same as it ever was.
I leave the hangar and wander to the control center.
"No word, General?" I ask.
He shakes his head sadly. "Nothing, Princess. But it's possible that the storm is blocking all transmissions. We've not heard anything in hours. You should return to your quarters and get some sleep."
Sleep is the last thing that's going to happen tonight. I'd prefer to remain here, but when Carlist Riekkan gives an order, you'd better obey it. Reluctantly, I leave for my quarters, which are like everyone else's -- freezing cold.
But that's nothing compared to what Han and Luke are enduring at the moment.
Threepio and Artoo follow me.
"Is there anything I can do, Mistress Leia?" Threepio asks solicitously.
Unless you can bring Han and Luke back immediately, safe and sound, forget it. But I simply reply, "No." Artoo gives what sounds like a sympathetic beep. I bid them good night and they depart.
I'm alone with nothing but my thoughts, my fears, my longings. My mind keeps traveling back to the man in the Corellian bloodstripes.
Why, I scream silently. With him, it's always business first. I thought he'd changed. He's going to be out of here as soon as he rescues Luke...
It occurs to me that no one else volunteered to look for Luke. Han alone gave no thought to his welfare as he ventured out on a tauntaun into the endless dark and dangerous night.
But as soon as he does...he's got to do it...he's gone.
I'm such a fool to be attracted to him. This is a schoolgirl crush, I tell myself, and nothing more. Granted, he's the most handsome male animal I've ever met. He's funny and he gets people's cooperation by making them laugh.
And even if he and Luke survive the night, he'll be gone, anyway.
This is ridiculous. There is no way there is a future for us. We come from two different worlds. I don't know his background, but let's just say that he's someone my father would never approve of.
I hope both of them live, but even if they do, I'll only have one. A loving, caring friend, but nothing at all like what I think I'm feeling for Han.
Why can't I just tell him? Because he'll mock me if I do. Everyone will know and I can't deal with that sort of humiliation.
I have a confession to make: I have never been so frightened in my life. I've never been so anguished and so confused. And I have no idea what to do about it.
Dawn is a long way off.