Paving the Road to Hell

A.N.: What the hell is with me and AU? Everything I write is AU! Why? Anyway, I got this idea in a dream, only it was a lot more happy in my dream….and confusing….Twisted it around a bit and got this! Response is always loved.

It wasn't supposed to be like this.

Where is our son now, do you know? Of course you don't. If you knew, I probably still wouldn't be here. Or maybe you do know, and you're keeping me here as punishment, out of spite. I have no regrets, really, in hiding him from you. I was only doing what I felt was best.

The hardest thing a mother can do is to give up her child. Your own mother could tell you that much.

I almost wish you would find him, that we could be a family again. But I've wished it a thousand times, and I've learned to let that sort of wish go. Because he's safer away from you. Maybe not as happy, or maybe happier. I'm not as happy. You aren't. But I don't really care about that.

When you're a mother, the safety of your child outweighs everything else. Yes, my love, it outweighs even you.

There's really no one to blame, I can't place fault. But I do wish for all the moments we'll both never see, I wish I could watch him grow up.

I bet your mother wished that, too. A lot of good it ended up doing us all.

Where is he now? Now that Princess Organa is dead….Now that you've killed her…..Yes, you, you who's firmest wish was to have a family. Of the four blood relations you've ever known, two have ended up dying by your own hand. So now you see why I can't risk it.

You murdered your own sister, Luke.

And you loved her, I know you did. You do love her, nothing past tense. But you're not Luke Skywalker anymore, you're not the grinning young farm boy that broke her out of the Death Star. You're someone I don't even recognize anymore.

Your eyes aren't the same color. Do you know that? I think you've chosen to ignore it.

Where is our son now, Luke? Killing Leia didn't get him for you, so she must have gotten him away just in time. She sacrificed her life for her nephew, for your son. She must have seen a piece of the memory of his father in him. Is he with Han? Poor General Solo who's soul is shattered in pieces because one of his best friends killed the woman he loved. Or maybe he's with Rogue Squadron, with whatever's left of it. You've taken special care in eliminating as much of Rogue Squadron (your squadron, Luke, the men you lead and loved – but no more) as you possibly can. But they are good, you know that best of all. Like ants, no matter how many traps you set, they still seem to be alive. Or maybe our son is with one of the members of Rebel High Command. Mon Mothma, or General Rieekan. I heard that General Dodonna died. I don't know if it's true or not. I really don't want to know.

Who ever has him knew who you used to be, loved who you used to be. Maybe they'll tell him stories of the idealistic Jedi who was trying so hard to save the galaxy, save his friends, save his father. For all the people he did save, he couldn't save himself.

I don't think you're that person anymore. That's why I'm not hurting as much as I could be.

You've stormed into my dingy little cell now, still so angry. Always angry. But you're in better control of your emotions today, I can tell. So am I. I don't know what possessed me to fall to my knees, kissing your hand and putting it to my cheek. I don't know why I told you how much I still loved you, despite everything you've done. You were scared, I could feel it. For a moment, just one moment, the old Luke Skywalker you've taken such care in hiding shone through, and so you had to leave in a mess of flustered emotions to keep from letting him take control.

Because you still love me, too. Even though you're killing me, I know you love me.

For as much as you never wanted to be like your father, you're practically his clone. Like father like son, I guess.

I hope our son breaks that chain.

It wasn't supposed to be like this.

I wasn't supposed to fall in love with you.

I've often wondered many what ifs. What if you hadn't been so determined that you could save your father's soul, or what if you'd listened to Leia's begging you to run away. What if you hadn't loved her enough to want to protect her from everything, even her father, your father. What if, when you had him beaten and dying, you hadn't heard all the things Emperor Palpatine promised you if you killed your father.

What if you hadn't liked the things he promised you if you killed your father.

For all that you wanted to protect Leia from the world, you couldn't protect her from yourself.

Because you're the one that killed her, Luke. And you know it. I can see it in your eyes, you know it. And you will die knowing it. It will eat at your soul – what ever is left of it – until you finally die.

And so, you move on from loving your father, hating your father, loving him again, trying to save him….to becoming him.

Because, you admitted, he killed the ones he loved, too. Just like you.

"How could you do this to me?" you are saying now, that pleading note perpetually in your voice. "I love our child, why did you giving him to the Rebellion?"

How to explain to you what I can't even explain to myself?

"Your love has proven to be an inconstant thing." I finally manage to look up at you, see the eyes that were blue once upon a time.

I loved your eyes. I loved who you were. You're not that person anymore.

"How can you say that?" you snarl, crouching on the balls of your heels so that we can look each other in the face. "How could you possibly say that?" You lean foreword to kiss me – once a thing I loved – but I look away. You're not you. If I kissed you, I would be being unfaithful to my husband, the man I love.

Because that's not you anymore.

I can feel your frustration, your rage, and your fingers tighten with a bruising grip on my jaw bone, forcing my head in your direction. You then force your lips on mine, and I think I might be sick, pushing away from you. But your not blue eyes hold me frozen, just inches from the body of the man that I was once married to.

Can you tell me what you did to that man? I loved him, I still do.

"I need him," you whisper huskily in my ear, not seductively, threateningly. "I need you. Stop this, please, just tell me where he is, say you'll be my wife again, and things can go back to the way they were." They never can. "We can be a family again." We never can.

Oh, my husband, even I don't know where our son is anymore.

"Are you going to kill me?"

You grab my wrist, yanking me foreword and into your embrace – something I once loved. "Don't say that!"

"Because I wonder who you need more, or what lengths you'll go to in order to get what you want."

"Stop it!" Are you crying? No, your voice just broke out of habit of emotion. You're learning to stop feeling emotion though. "How could you do this to me?" you repeat. It's the same thing you say every single time. "I thought you loved me."

That's a low blow. "I loved who you were, that's someone I never see anymore. Look at all the people you've killed, Luke. Look at the friends and the family you adored that you murdered. How long before me, our son….how long before our imperfections grow to tire you as well?"

You've woven your fingers into my hair, tightening your grip and hurting me. I can feel how torn you are. The Dark Side wants you to hurt me. The man I love doesn't. "I never wanted any of this. You brought it all."

And now you shift the blame, just like your father did. Surely not by his own actions was his wife driven away. That was Obi-Wan's fault. Not because I've seen you kill did I make sure such a fate never befell our son, that was my fault.

But maybe it is. I'll give you that much.

When I finally decided to get into contact with the remainder of the bruised and battered Rebellion (you were much more thorough in your extermination than either Palpatine or your father) I was well aware of the chain I was helping to continue. Another Skywalker male who would grow up without a father. Will he turn to the Dark Side like the last two did, despite how thoroughly in the Light he seems? I'm another mother giving her son up to the Jedi order because I think it's what's best for him. A lot of good it did you or your father. Am I damning our son?

I want to cry. I won't, though.

After you murdered Vader up in the second Death Star, you became Palpatine's apprentice, and I became one of the promises that needed fulfilling. The protraction of our marriage was just an act of giving the Alliance another blow. Their precious Commander Skywalker, Hero of Yavin IV, was indeed a Sith, marrying another Sith. Hell, we were going to have Sith children!

I'm trying to make sure that it doesn't happen.

I didn't expect to think you were handsome, or have gorgeous eyes, or any of the things that happened. I was marrying you for my master's sake, because I loved him. No, I feared him. But back then, fear was love. I didn't learn the difference between the two until I met you. But now you blend the line again. I am afraid of you, but I love you.

I didn't expect to fall in love with you.

You didn't expect to fall in love with me.

Just how long was it we had together, Luke? Do you even remember? For a few blissful months we were the only people that existed in the world. Oh, sure, you would leave, or I would leave, to destroy a Rebel base, to perform an assassination. These were mere exceptions to the rule, warps in the line. And then you came home to me one night to find out you were going to be a father. And I wasn't afraid, because I loved you, and you loved me, and we were going to have a family. We could have lived on love alone in those days.

We can't do that anymore.

It was about six months after our child was born that you came back to me one night, and I will remember that it was the first time I was ever afraid of you.

Your eyes were yellow.

It's faded now, it's not as bad. You can't really tell.

But it's there.

Just like it was then.

You came in, yellow eyes, grinning in a manner that can only be called, "twisted," and said to me, "I have made you the Empress."

You had the decency to have already washed the blood off your hands. I don't think I could have stayed with you for another second if I'd seen you with blood on your hands.

"Would you like to know how I did it?" you asked me.

"Luke, don't."

"First, I cut of his arm."

"Stop."

"Then his other arm."

"I don't want to hear this!"

You began to break down after that, and I managed to understand that the limbs had been severed before the head, and after that you'd simply started to sob, pushing me onto the bed we shared so that you could curl up next to me and cry your eyes out. You weren't crying for Palpatine. Even I couldn't cry for Palpatine. You were crying for your aunt, your uncle, your mother, your father, and all the friends you'd loved and murdered.

That was the night I began thinking about sending our son away.

A year later, I did it.

And now, here I am, for Force knows how long. Time no longer has any hold.

And just like then, you're crying now, and even I can't resist the urge to comfort you. I'm trying to comfort the man I fell in love with, but I know that's not you anymore. "You're beautiful," you whisper in my ear, and I know I'm not. The months I've spent in this cell have made me anything but that. But in the eyes of the man I fell in love with I am.

And sometimes the line between the two of you blurs.

When I handed our son to Leia, I thought it was bad enough that I was crying. But she was crying, too. I think she saw something of you in our son. She really did love you, Luke, you know she did. She never stopped loving you.

You never stopped loving her.

You loved her even as you slaughtered her – because you knew she had something to do with the disappearance of your son, and she wouldn't tell you. Instead, she just begged you to come back home, that it didn't matter what you had done, they still loved you, you could be forgiven.

That frightened you.

I'll bet you made her offers of every sort to get her to tell you what you wanted to know. You both still loved the other.

I'll bet in your mind you've managed to twist it into you killed her because you loved her. Your father probably did the same thing.

"You make me feel things I shouldn't," you're still whispering. "And if you won't be mind, I can't feel them." So now you've admitted what it comes down to; if I don't join you, reveal our son, then you really will kill me.

"There's only one way to stop those emotions," I whisper to you, and sniffling, you nod.

You are so much like your father.

Don't mistake me, my love. I am not eager to die. But I know you're not who you used to be, that I won't be getting that man back, that I won't watch my son grow up.

When you're a mother, that's really the only point to life.

I think it's better this way.

You let me go, and stand up, unclipping the lightsaber from your belt.

"I love you," I tell you the way I told you so many times before.

"I love you too, Mara." And I know you do.

And we both still love each other.

In fact, you're killing me because you love me. Maybe I've been here too long, loved you too long, because that somehow makes sense.

All I can do now is close my eyes, listen to the sound of the lightsaber as it hums, take a deep breath, and imagine that I'm whispering to my son all the things I'd love to tell him.

All I can do is let the end happen.