Foreign Territory

By Dant Solo

Princess Leia sifted through Han's meager wardrobe, searching for something to sleep in. Her white coldsuit was far too warm and uncomfortable. She would have to throw the suit and her undergarments in the valet.

All of Han's shirts would be huge on her but she managed to find one old, white shirt that was a bit smaller than his others. She stripped out of her coldsuit and donned Han's shirt. It came down to her knees, but it would have to do.

Now what would she wear on her bottom? The thought of wearing Han's undergarment made her blush. She finally settled on a pair of gray sleep shorts that also looked as if they had seen better days. With some effort, she managed to cinch them tight enough to stay on her slim hips.

She couldn't believe the predicament they were in. Flying at sublight speed, they would arrive at Bespin in thirty-eight days. It would be the longest trip of Leia's life. She had always taken lightspeed for granted.

Now here she was in Han's cabin, confused about where things stood between them and what Han's intentions were.

"Princess, you can sleep in my cabin." He had informed her once they were underway.

Before she could retort that she was most certainly not sleeping with him, he had added. "I'll sleep in the crew quarters."

She had been so ready for his usual crass behavior but he had surprised her with his chivalry. She had travelled on the Falcon before for a few days at a time. He had never before offered his cabin.

But he had never kissed her before either.

Her body suffused with heat at the memory of Han's lips against hers. She hadn't been able to think, had barely been able to breathe. His proximity so unnerved her; the closer he drew to her the less she was able to resist. His hand massaging hers had felt so warm, his presence had surrounded her; she had felt lost and helpless to resist. So many feelings…exhilaration, fear, confusion…too many, in that moment, to process.

She felt so flustered. A part of her wanted that moment back, craved it. She felt so drawn to him all of a sudden. But it also scared her. She felt so out of control. And Leia hated not being in control. There were very few times in her life that Leia hadn't felt in control of herself in a situation, and at the moment she couldn't recall even one. She had remained in control of her feelings when captured by Vader. When Tarkin had destroyed Alderaan, Leia was devastated, but held herself together until she had the time and energy to grieve. Not once did she show weakness in front of her enemies. She was a master at affecting a brave façade. She had been prepared for it all her life.

But she hadn't been prepared for Han Solo. She had never given much thought to romance before. Her life was dedicated to the Senate, and then the Rebel Alliance, from the early age when young girls are just starting to learn about dating and romance.

She had known the mechanics of kissing, of course. But she had been unprepared for the reality of it. No one had ever told her how warm and soft a man's lips would feel, how his scent would engulf her and remain on her hands for hours after. She never knew about the heat that would sweep through her body, or how afterwards she would feel entrapped in a tractor beam, drawn inexorably to him.

After their escape, things had been all business. Leia was tasked with taking inventory of their food and water supply. They had to make sure it lasted the next thirty-eight days.

Several times she had caught Han watching her. She smiled tentatively, uncertain how to behave in this new dynamic. He had smiled back with a thoughtful expression. Perhaps he was as confused as she.

Ignorance was not a familiar feeling for Leia. Almost everything she had ever tried had come easily to her. Immersed in politics before her thirteenth birthday, Leia had been a natural on the Senate floor. And once promised to the Rebellion, she learned to shoot a blaster with quick accuracy. Her combat skills had surprised everyone, especially Han.

But matters of romance were unknown to Leia. She had been briefly attracted to a few boys during adolescence, but had never had the time or energy to pursue it. Now she was out of her element and it made her deeply uncomfortable. And she knew that a man like Han Solo certainly had a lot of experience in that area.

She glanced around his cabin, wanting to know more about who Han Solo was. He was not very forthcoming about his past. She laid back against the pillow and could smell the masculine scent of him. Lying on his bunk, surrounded by his personal things, felt so...intimate. She felt a frustrated yearning. She wanted to see him, be near him again, but she felt self-conscious seeking him out. She simply didn't know how to casually approach him at this point. And so she stayed in his cabin, feeling a deep sense of discontent.