Author Note: I don't think that the previous chapter showed up on fanfiction correctly, so you might want to make sure you've already read chapter 4 before reading the Epilogue
Wooden Tree House
High in a Wroshyr Tree
Longitude: 135 degrees
Latitude: 15 degrees south of the Equator
5 years later
In the early dawn the gigantic, enormous, behemoth of the wroshyr tree swayed in the morning breezes and Mara Jade Skywalker swayed with it.
It was still early and she didn't want to open her eyes yet, so she didn't. It was … not quiet, exactly. Not in an auditory sense. There were soft creaks of the tree, the whisper of fluttering leaves, the cries of stately owls as they made their way to their dens for the day.
The soft breathing of her companion.
But emotionally, spiritually, it was silent. She, and he, had been pushing so hard for so long. Here on Kashyyyk, surrounded by her people, she felt at peace, relaxed.
Mara smiled and opened her eyes. Facing her, his mouth hanging open slightly, his respirations steady, lay her beloved husband, Luke Skywalker.
Prince Luke Skywalker, if a sentient listened to the holonet, and most people did. He hated that. Loathed it.
Her smile faded as she noted the dark circles under Luke's eyes. She had been less in the public eye the last 6 months and had gotten far more rest. He had been carrying tremendous loads on behalf of a galaxy which, while it appreciated him, did not truly understand him.
She would let him sleep.
Awkwardly, Mara managed to roll off the bed hanging from the ceiling using the Force (the Wookiees made the most comfortable, amazing hanging beds in the galaxy) and onto the floor. Quietly, she stepped into an adjacent refresher for her morning ablutions, then walked into the small living/kitchen area.
Ten minutes later, Mara was perched on a comfortable oro wood couch with krayt dragon leather cushions, with her caf on a nearby table, her favorite holopad in her hand, and Relinka Spetzv rambling away on the holoscreen on the wall about various topics which were of no interest to Mara.
Twenty minutes later, a small part of her brain discussed auditory input with the conscious part of her brain and she looked back up at the holoscreen. Relinka was smiling in her toothy way and across from her was …
"Sentients of all species, it is my honor and pleasure to introduce the Emperor and Empress of the galaxy, Padme Skywalker and Darth Vader!"
Mara stretched out through the Force and a dark chocolate protein bar leaped into her prosthetic right hand. She quickly removed the wrapper and started chewing even as she focused enthusiastically on her in-laws.
This was going to be good.
"Your Highnesses, it is a delight to have you here," Relinka Spetzv said in a clearly pleased tone.
Mara snorted in amusement. It just showed how much Darth Vader had mellowed that Spetzv could get those words out and not only sound authentic but perhaps actually be authentic.
"It's our pleasure," Padme said with her usual awesomely charming smile.
"It is good to be here," Vader chimed in gamely, even as he attempted a smile of his own.
Mara wrinkled her brow thoughtfully. It wasn't a great smile, but it was something. Maybe a smirk?
It was still weird seeing the man's face after almost two decades of the cold, black mask. But the Empress and Luke, and even Princess Leia, had been on Vader's case for years about his health and had bullied and cajoled him into undergoing lots of necessary medical treatment.
His face was still quite scarred, but he looked human and he had quite gorgeous blue eyes.
Eyes like Luke's …
Mara sighed in a lovelorn way that would have made her vomit five years ago. Now she just embraced it.
"Your Highnesses," Relinka continued, waving her rainbow hued locks, "I understand that last night you and your family attended the world premiere of Raised By Wookiees, the Mara Jade story …"
"What is with her hair?" Luke asked, slipping down onto the couch next to Mara. "Is it moving?"
His wife leaned over to rest her head on his torso and grinned, "I think she's got some new method of making the individual strands change color every five seconds. Neat, huh?"
"I prefer red hair," Luke murmured back.
They engaged in some non-gratuitous kissing and then tuned in to the holocast again.
"So, Emperor Vader, what did you think of the performance of Quianna Jane in the biopic about your daughter-in-law? Do you think that Jane successfully captured the essence of your son's wife, Mara Jade Skywalker?"
Vader blinked, blinked again, and shot a horrified glance at his wife.
"I believe Quianna did an excellent job," Padme replied smoothly. "Obviously Mara's story has its share of tragedy, but I appreciated the infusion of humor at appropriate moments."
"The actress was not adequate in the lightsaber duels," Vader stated suddenly. "It is obvious that her flexibility is insufficient for Form IV fighting. My daughter-in-law is an expert as she has trained under both me and my son, or at least she is an expert when she isn't as big as a pregnant bantha."
Relinka's mouth drooped open and she glanced in bewilderment at the Empress.
"That is not a reflection on Quianna Jane, of course," Padme stated smoothly. "Quianna is an excellent actress but not a Force sensitive …"
"They should have found an appropriate stunt double," the Emperor replied in a clearly grouchy tone. "It is important to adequately convey the proper forms …"
"Perhaps if there is a sequel, your very own daughter-in-law could fill in as a stunt double," Relinka exclaimed cheerily. "That would be awesome."
"It would be far better than exposing the masses to that pathetic excuse of …" Vader continued sternly, only to stop when Padme leaned over and placed a firm hand on his arm.
"Stop?" the Emperor asked meekly.
"Yes, darling, stop," Padme replied with a loving smile.
She turned back to Spetzv and chuckled, "I suspect Mara would find it amusing, but she'll be far too busy raising babies to participate in holodocumentaries the next couple of years."
"The galaxy is, of course, absolutely delighted that Prince Luke and Princess Mara will soon be blessed with twins," Relinka gushed. "We are all curious, too, as to the genders of the twins."
"No one knows for sure," Padme said with a smile, "including our son and daughter-in-law. But I think she's carrying two girls."
"I disagree," Vader argued. "Two boys."
"Two girls," the Empress replied, lifting her eyebrows.
"The power of the Force shows me that the children are male."
"You thought I was carrying one child and that it was a girl."
"I was at least correct about the girl. Princess Leia is everything I ever imagined, my love, with your political acuity and gorgeous looks …"
"And I was correct about the boy. Luke has your looks and your blue eyes, if not your height …"
"I am not the man I once was," Vader replied, his scarred forehead creasing sadly.
"You will always be my Ani," Padme replied, slipping over and seating herself onto her husband's lap. "You will always be my love."
Padme leaned in and began kissing her husband passionately on the live holonet, even as Luke began giggling madly next to Mara.
"I can't even, I can't even …," he began.
"Your parents are hilarious!" Mara replied, even as Relinka Spetzv, her eyes as wide as hover saucers, gazed into the holocam and stated rather shakily, "We will now go to a commercial break."
The holoscreen changed to a Dex's Diner commercial and Luke, with a wave of his hand, turned it off.
"They are crazy," he agreed, leaning over to kiss Mara's red hair. "How are you feeling this morning?"
"Bulbous," his wife replied as a Wookiee Cookie cavorted through the air and into her hand. "And hungry."
"You look beautiful," he replied as she took a big bite. "Do you want to go out on the deck?"
"Please," she agreed, lurching to her feet and walking out to the deck with the cookie in her hand.
Her husband joined her a few minutes later with two cups of blue milk, and both stared out over the waist high railing into the surrounding wroshyr trees.
"It's so restful here," Mara murmured.
"Tranquil," Luke agreed.
"I love it," the red haired former Hand sighed. "I'm so glad that you realized through my passionate love of Wookiee Cookies that I was raised here on Kashyyyk."
Luke nodded and gestured surreptitiously with his hand, causing the remains of his wife's cookie to float out of her loose grip and into his mouth.
"Hey!" Mara yelped with false indignation.
"Hey indeed," the Jedi said with a grin. "I think I like the chocolate ones the best."
"The Wookiees have been so welcoming," Luke continued softly. "They are such forgiving people considering what the Empire in general, and Father in particular, did to them."
"I'd say that interview was its own form of penance," Mara said thoughtfully, her left hand caressing her incredibly large belly. "The news that I was orphaned and raised by Wookiees until the Empire snatched me as a child has definitely improved the tourist trade here on Kashyyyk, but it is your father's decision to have his current cloak made out of wroshyr bark which has really helped the small scale economies around the planet. Wroshyr bark clothing is the rage. Even Ransome Quilttraz is making a whole line out of wroshyr bark."
"I actually quite like that cloak," Luke said, "and I agree that he is doing what he can in his own kind of, uh, awkward way."
"Better awkward than murderous," Mara pointed out. "I actually quite like your father these days."
"So do I," Luke agreed, and pulled his wife close to him. "So do I."
Mara rested blissfully in his embrace for 30 seconds, then suddenly stiffened.
"What's wrong?" Luke asked worriedly.
Mara clenched her fists and her teeth for another 30 seconds, then relaxed.
"Just a contraction," she replied. "But stronger than usual."
12 hours later
"Not know why training you I am," Master Yoda stated irritably. "Attachment. Passion. Marriage. Wrong it all is."
"Master Yoda," Leia Organa Solo replied calmly, her face serene, "it is true that times have changed but the basic tenets of the Jedi Order still hold true. We seek the best for the many peoples of the galaxy. We seek to serve others, to have compassion on them, and yes, to love them when that is appropriate. I would say that we are not turning from the Jedi Way, but instead adjusting appropriately to the current needs of the galaxy in general and Force Sensitives in particular."
Han Solo groaned softly and leaned back wearily against the rounded wall of the hut. How many times, how many times, was the old troll going to say the same things to his wife? It would end as it always did. Yoda and Leia would talk around each other for a while, and Leia would prevail as she always did, and Yoda would teach her what she wanted to know.
Leia said it was all part of diplomacy and courtesy and patience and Han could kind of understand it – old sentients got weird sometimes – but it was dull. And it wasn't like he could just go off and climb a tree for fun. There were nasty snakes around here ready either to bite him or make a meal of him.
"Eating my stew you are not," Master Yoda suddenly stated, turning his baleful eyes on the Corellian captain. "Not like it, do you?"
Han looked down gloomily at his bowl of untouched stew. Every time they came here it was the same. Leia said it was no doubt part of Yoda's mysterious unknown culture to offer root stew but the stuff was disgusting.
Han glanced at Leia, who wore a pleading look, then reluctantly spooned a bite of the stew into his mouth.
Using every iota of will power, he managed to suppress a scream of anguish. It was even more revolting than usual.
He opened his mouth to say something polite, then decided on honesty.
"No, Master Yoda. I don't like your stew. I hate it. But I appreciate your kindness in serving it."
Leia's eyes widened in horror even as Yoda smiled, then chuckled, then wheezed in obvious amusement.
"Honest you are, Solo," the old elf finally choked out. "Good, good! Do not like it I also. Just making it I like. Never again you will have to eat it, never!"
Han smiled in broad and honest relief, then glanced at Leia to see how she was taking all this.
His wife was no longer paying attention to either the aged Jedi or her husband.
"Luke?" she asked, her eyes unfocused.
"What?" Han asked, sitting up abruptly. "Is something wrong with the Kid?"
"Oh, how exciting!" she exclaimed aloud as her gaze focused on her husband. "Han, Mara just gave birth to a boy and a girl!"
Author Note: Thanks again to those of you who have faithfully followed me or this story and to those of you who have reviewed my natterings. Thanks again to my beloved husband who edits. Lastly, the end of this fic is a call back to an old children's book "George and Martha" – Martha loves to make split pea soup and her friend George loathes split pea soup!