Thursday, February 20, 2014
Valentine's Day Challenge The Third: Submission #3 by Arwen Solo
"Can I come in?"
Han stretched, then grimaced at the familiar stiffness in his shoulders. He couldn't wait for the carbonite effects to fade. "Sure, come right in, Leia." The door slid open, and he breathed in sharply at the sight of her. Her slave costume had been replaced with a loose-fitting shirt and combat pants.
Her hair had been let down and it tumbled down over her shoulders and down to her waist. She looked different without a utility belt around her waist and a blaster in her hand – fragile, like a beautiful china doll. Han smiled. A tough china doll.
Leia was looking at him with concern in her dark eyes. "Feeling alright?"
He nodded, though the dizziness hadn't yet worn off. "You look great." At least his vision had returned. He patted the blankets next to him. "Come sit down, sweetheart."
After a moment's hesitation she sat down beside him and he put one arm around her waist. He still find it hard to believe that she'd gone all that way just to find him on Tatooine. She'd said she loved him, but the weight of the whole Alliance rested on her shoulders! He began stroking her hair, suddenly filled with a sense of pure, unconditional love that he'd never felt before. "I'm so sorry, Leia," he said huskily.
"Why, Han? There's nothing to apologise for."
"I'm just…sorry you had to go through all this."
She slid her arm around his shoulders. Looking into his eyes, she tilted her head and kissed him, firmly yet gently. When she drew back, her eyes were dancing with a playfulness she rarely showed.
"You don't often get sentimental," she teased, running her hand through his thick hair.
Han grinned. "Sorry, Your Worship. I forgot you only like scoundrels."
"Cut it out, hotshot!" Leia slapped his arm. Her smile faded. "I never thought I'd see you again," she said softly. "You've missed a lot. Luke has changed so much."
Han fought down the feeling rising up within him – he couldn't name it, but it was bordering on jealousy. Had Luke used Han's absence to develop a relationship with Leia?
The princess seemed to see the conflict within him. "Han… you don't think – do you?" she asked incredulously.
"No, I – uh…" Han was rarely lost for words.
"Han, I would never betray you. My relationship with Luke is very different to the way I feel about you. He's… special to me in a way I can't explain."
Han leaned down and kissed her. "I love you," Leia murmured, squeezing his hand. "I love you so much."