Note: This story was written in response to a challenge posted on the skywalking mailing list that required to have a member of the Skywalker family think of one of Anakin and Amidala's wedding anniversaries. This story was also published in the Skywalker family fanzine "I Care." (April 2001)
Sitting down on the stone bench, Amidala felt a small smile tug at her lips as she heard Leia shriek with delight. Looking in the direction of her daughter, she saw the two and a half year old rushing towards a patch of color shifting roliga flowers where a pale yellow vazfly sat on one of the delicate blooms. As soon as Leia got close, however, the vazfly flew away, causing the little girl to momentarily pout before she caught sight of another vazfly sitting on a flower not too far away.
Watching Leia chase after the vazflies, Amidala's smile faded as the color of the roliga flowers morphed from pale pink to dark purple. The same dark purple that the roliga flowers at her wedding had been.
All day she had purposely been avoiding that topic as today marked the sixth anniversary of her marriage to Anakin Skywalker; the happiest day of her life. Six years since that day and she could still remember it as if it were yesterday. Or rather, she could still remember what she had noticed that day as all of her attention had been focused on her love. If someone had asked her that evening what the guests had been wearing or whether or not there had been any incidents, she would have been unable to tell them. All she would have been able to tell them was how Anakin's eyes had sparkled with love and excitement, the tone of his voice as he'd taken the vows, the feel of his lips as he'd kissed her, the way he'd held her as they danced.... All that she could still remember clearly.
Feeling the tears well up in her eyes at the thought of the happiness and love she'd once possessed, Amidala squeezed her eyes shut. Memories flashed before her closed eyelids, memories of him and everything they had shared together. The charming and somewhat clumsy way he'd flirted with her, the way he'd literally beamed with joy when she'd accepted his proposal, their wedding evening, the many private moments they'd shared, the small ways he'd shown his love. The joy, sadness, excitement, worry, love...
Amidala moaned softly as she thought of her husband. As a young boy he'd amused her, as a teenager he'd charmed her, and as an adult he'd made her fall helplessly in love with him. She could still see him smiling at her, that special smile he'd reserved just for her. A smile that was often accompanied with a sly wink, especially in the early days before their marriage when he'd caught her looking at him.
Opening her eyes, Amidala noted that Leia was now down on her hands and knees on the path, slowly crawling towards a vazfly on a bush just a few feet away. Shaking her head at the little girl's antics, she felt a pang of loss. Luke should be here with her, helping Leia in her futile efforts.
How was her son right now? Was he all right? Was he playing outside as well? No, probably not on Tatooine, the suns would be too harsh for him. How she longed to be able to be with him! To hold him in her arms, to watch him grow, to have seen his first steps, to see the excitement glow in his eyes each time he discovered something new, to hear him call her 'mommy' as Leia did...
Unable to stop a few tears from spilling down her cheeks, Amidala clutched at the memory of her young son. Briefly she thanked the Force again for having let her know what he would look like for, unlike Leia, Luke had been born with a few tufts of hair. Blond hair, like his father's, just as his crystal clear blue eyes were those of Anakin as well. Bringing her hands to her mouth, a moan escaped her as the images of Luke and Anakin overlapped in her mind. How she missed them both!
They should all be on Naboo right now, they should all be together. Her, Anakin, Luke and Leia. They should have been a united family going through all the ups and downs of life together, helping each other along. Enjoying life. Not being scattered throughout the galaxy like so many roliga seeds in a field, half of them completely unaware of the existence of the others and what they could have had. But no, here she was, with little Leia, while Luke and Anakin were far away.
Would she ever see either of them again?
Obi-Wan had said that it was impossible for her to see Luke once he took him away as it would be too dangerous for both of them. Luke's incredible strength in the Force made it essential that all precautions were taken to ensure his safety as in him lay the key to the Emperor's defeat. But then, he'd also told her that Anakin was gone forever, slain by Vader and Palpatine. However she couldn't, wouldn't, believe that. No, Anakin, her husband, was still alive. True, he was being held prisoner by Vader and the Dark Side, but she was sure that he still lived within the Sith monster. She'd told Obi-Wan as much, but Kenobi had simply closed his eyes in pain and shook his head in sorrow. He'd given up on his former apprentice. She wouldn't. She hadn't forgotten her vows to her Ani and she never would. If she had known how to bring him back, she'd have tried to do so long ago.
'Do or do not, there is no try,' her mind whispered Anakin's words, causing a ghost of a smile to grace her face.
But the smile quickly vanished as Amidala thought of how she had failed to prevent his fall to the Darkness. True, she hadn't known what was occurring, but she had been unable to halt it nonetheless. Her only hope was that one of the twins would be able to save their father where she had failed.
Amidala suddenly clutched at her stomach and closed her eyes as she remembered what Obi-Wan had told her. That Vader, should he ever learn of the existence of his children, would turn them to the Darkness or destroy them. Fighting down the images and the sickness they threatened to cause, she slowly managed to convince herself that that was not going to happen. Anakin, her Ani, would never be able to take the lives of his own daughter and son, no matter what the Dark Side or Palpatine tried. He would fight them too strongly for that to occur.
Amidala instantly straightened and found her young daughter standing before her. All traces of Leia's earlier joy and laughter had vanished from her face as if they had never been. Instead her little face was twisted into an expression of worry and her lower lip trembled visibly as she sensed her mother's unhappiness.
"Mommy?" Leia asked again, her voice trembling with uncertainty.
"Leia, my baby," Amidala managed to say before a sob escaped her as she got off the bench, lowered herself to her knees in front of her daughter and pulled her into her arms. Unable to hold the tears and anguish back any longer, she clutched her child desperately to herself and cried.