For Ben Jhon Skywalker, from Aunt Leia and the Family
by
Rosie and Diana

When Luke and Mara told Leia Organa Solo that they were expecting a son, Leia found herself surprisingly nostalgic for the days of cradling infants and changing nappies. Her own children were old enough to have children, but Leia did not want to rush her brood into such things at what she considered "too tender ages." So she was thrilled to know that her twin brother would be producing a nephew for her to dote over!

Han rolled his eyes as his wife started to get all "nesting," arranging for baby clothing, baby furniture, a new nanny program for R2D2 to learn. But most surprising, Leia put her royal hands to sewing a blanket and pillow for the newborn! As long as he'd known her, she had never — not once — so much as offered to sew on a loose button for him. Of course, she had been raised a princess, and he supposed she never knew such things; besides, 'droids did it better and faster. So seeing her deftly using a needle and thread to put the backing onto the flanneline, then pressing and turning out finished seams ... his head had trouble processing this scene!


(Chewbacca teased him, telling him that it could be that Leia herself might be pregnant again! "May a moon fall on you for that, Chewie," muttered Han. When Chewbacca died, he remembered the words, and swore that if Leia was indeed pregnant again, his next son — or daughter — would be named for him.)

In the meantime, Leia proudly presented the blanket and pillow to the parents-to-be, and they were as astonished as Han had been! "Did you really do this yourself, Leia?" Mara wondered.

Her sister-in-law made a face, "Why does everyone keep asking me that? Even Winter asked, and she should know better! We did many projects for the Alderaanian Service League together, and I happen to excell at blankets, I'll have you know!" But she laughed good-heartedly, and Mara couldn't thank her enough for the unique and beautiful gift.


Luke looked carefully at the design, showing a variety of animals on a lush, fertile world. He asked if they were aliens, and was this Alderaan?

"No ... these are fanciful anthropomorphized pets. See? These are the Three Naughty Pittins, and this is the Hungry Duck—"

"Oh!" Exclaimed Luke, "I know what a duck is — Obiwan told me."

Taken aback that Luke would know what a waterfowl might be, given his impoverished upbringing on a desert planet, she continued, "And this is the Gentleman Amphid, and these are the Bunnies who Went to School, and this one is Bunny-man's Garden." She enjoyed the memories of the tales her aunts had told her in her childhood.

Luke repeated, "Is this charming waterscene meant to depict Alderaan?"

"No, actually," Leia grew thoughtful, "Winter found it in some hidden chamber in Vader's castle, believe it or not. I don't know what our father would have been doing with it, but I believe it's depicting a planet called Naboo, which is long dead now. Maybe he just missed his mother and liked having a blankie to cuddle?" She and Mara laughed uproariously at the thought of evil, dark-helmeted Darth Vader cuddling a blankie and sucking his thumb!


But Luke didn't seem to hear the women. He rubbed the blanket with his hand, and touched the pillow, "From our father?" He felt a surge through the Force, but it didn't feel like it was coming from memories of Anakin Skywalker ... though it did feel like it was coming from family ...

He shook himself; it was probably Leia's aura coming through in unexpected ways. Whatever it was, it was definitely feminine.

"Leia, that's very special! Thank you so much, you know how much this blanket means to me—"

"Oh, no you don't, Skywalker!" Mara snatched the blanket and pillow away from her husband, "This is for the baby, no making it your blankie before the kid has a fighting chance to claim it himself!"


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