The Dinner Party

By Ash Darklighter

Disclaimer – The characters in this story are the property of Lucasfilm Ltd. I am making no credits from this either Imperial or Republican. This fic is for Sienn. Just for her encouragement, lovely nature and her willingness to give feedback to absolutely everybody. This is a PWP and if you are looking for a plot, it really isn't there.

The Solo's Apartment – Coruscant

"I've asked Mara Jade." Leia tapped a command into her data pad.

"You hadn't asked her anyway?" Han asked dryly. Considering the way that Luke and Mara had been circling around one another lately – not always nicely either – it was a wonder that Leia hadn't just summoned the pair of them to a private audience and blasted them into sorting things out.

"No."

"Oh!" Han rolled his eyes as he leaned against the doorframe of Leia's study.

"She's apparently seeing Lando these days and as you'd already invited him."

Han's eyebrows nearly shot off the top of his head with surprise. Where had his wife managed to get that nerf-brained notion from? "She's not seeing Lando."

"But I heard…"

Somewhere a door hissed closed and footsteps could be heard making their way along the passageway. Han sent Leia a warning look as he straightened up and glanced over his shoulder. "You heard wrong. She is not seeing Lando."

He moved away from the door as a young man with tousled fairish hair and a sunny smile, peered into the room. "Hey!" he called cheerfully.

"Hey yourself, Kid."

"Who's seeing Lando?"

Leia lifted her head from her perusal of the data pad's contents and frowned at her brother. "You're not wearing that tonight are you?"

Luke's face mirrored his confusion as he straightened the neck of his crumpled beige working tunic. "I'm going back to do a little work on the ship and then I'm going home for an early night. I'm looking forward to not to having to be interested in anything apart from whatever's on the holo."

"Probably rubbish." Han said and winked at Leia. "Kid, I may join you."

"Han!" Leia said sharply. Not amused at his humour.

"Since when do I dress up to work on my x-wing?" Luke lifted his shoulder. "What's wrong with my clothes?"

"There's nothing wrong with your clothes…for what you were intending to do…"

"Why do I sense there's a big 'but' coming," Luke drawled.

"Because there is, Junior." Han grinned sardonically. "You are expected to attend your sister's dinner party this evening."

Luke stiffened. "That's tomorrow…isn't it?"

Han shook his head. "Uh-uh, Kid. It's tonight." He ignored his wife tut-tutting in the background. She'd been reminding Han of it on a daily basis for the entire week.

Luke made a face. "It's not."

"It is."

"Are you planning to stand arguing until my guests walk through the door, proving, once and for all time, that the dinner party is indeed tonight?" Leia had started tapping her fingers on the desk and that was never a good sign.

"Mara Jade's coming," Han said, a smile crossing his face.

"She is?" Luke scowled. Great...just great. The last time, Mara and he had met; the redhead had delighted in listing his faults as she saw it.

"Leia invited her," Han said brightly, noting Luke's expression with interest. So there was trouble as usual between Jade and Skywalker. Some of his wife's dinner parties often lacked entertainment. Luke and Mara usually provided it if they were on planet.

"She's seeing Calrissian," Leia said blithely, unaware that Luke had frozen.

"Mara's seeing Lando?" Luke said in a slightly strangled voice. "I suppose it was only a matter of time as Lando's seen everyone else. It was bound to be her turn eventually." He turned sharply and walked from the room.

But Han had seen the Kid's reaction. 'Even more interesting,' he thought, hiding his smile. He followed Luke towards the entrance hall. "She is not seeing Calrissian," he said, hoping it might cheer Luke up. "She can't stand him."

"She is…" Leia said following her brother and husband. "I heard it from Mirax."

Luke's face was difficult to read. He had managed to get his emotions under control. "It's nothing to do with me who Jade is seeing," Luke said evenly. "It may stop her from giving out her usual list of criticisms about me to anyone who will listen. I will offer Lando my best wishes. It takes a brave man to stand up to Jade for any length of time."

'Ouch!' thought Han.

"Is that all?" Luke shifted from side to side as if he was eager to leave.

"There are rumours, Kid. Mara's a beautiful woman after all and Lando is definitely interested. I, personally, don't think that the rumours are true."

"They could be," Luke sounded bored.

"They've been seen together," Leia added.

"So? I've been seen with her and we're not dating, Force forbid." Luke's face settled into a disgruntled expression at his sister's words. "I have to go."

"Luke…" Leia began saying, her voice anxious.

"I'll see you later."

"Luke…" his sister said again.

"I won't wear this tonight," he said. "I'll be presentable."

Leia smiled with visible relief. "Good."

Han just shook his head. He was thinking that the Jedi Master was protesting a little too much about the red haired trader.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx