In the deepest of his slumber, Anakin felt himself drifting into nothingness. He dreamt of being in a familiar place however now it was darker than he recalled. In this vision he was having, he stood at the edge of the force river. The sight of the river brought terrible pain to him, for his heart's greatest desire was the dive in and resume his desperate search for his beloved wife. Deep down he couldn't stifle the overwhelming feeling that he was robbed of his greatest love. She was taken from him without any warning and the pain of her being ripped away from him was still so raw. He sadly watched the tendrils of force signatures follow the flow of the water. He closed his eyes wishing so hard that he could find her signature in the force. Searching for her now would not prove successful. He understood that now. He understood that he had to keep his faith in the will of the force and trust that wherever she is, she would find happiness. Even though, his heart burned with the desire for her return, his faith in the force stayed his movements. Anakin's mind and body betrayed his heart. He emitted a shaky sigh and turned his back on the river. He swallowed and tried hard not to allow his eyes to be blinded by his tears. He may have lost Padme, but not her love. He still felt her love and that was his consolation. He had accepted that Padme's return was not the will of the force.

As he took his first steps away from the river's edge, he felt a strange sensation emerging from the surface of the river. He sensed it floating through the air towards him. He felt overwhelming love and happiness emanating from it. Anakin recognized it immediately and turned around. The tendril remained floating just an arm's length away from him. He watched with widened eyes as it expanded into a shape of a person. At first the shape was dull and as it gained more resolution, much more apparent did the signature it emitted.

Anakin's lips parted as he stepped forward, "Padme?"

The entity nodded slowly.

In his disbelief, Anakin's tears streaked down his cheeks as he reached forward to touch her but she was just a ghost. His hand passed right through her. His chin trembled at the sight of her angelic beauty framed by her long tendrils. She smiled sympathetically. In her eyes, Anakin could that she was truly happy, but more than that, he could see that there was something else in her eyes. He couldn't tell what it was but decided now wasn't the time to figure it out. For some reason, Padme didn't speak. She only looked at him and conveyed her love for him with her eyes and her smile. Anakin took this as his chance to say goodbye and hopeful gain some closure to her tragic death.

Anakin sniffed and cleared his throat, "Padme, I - I can't tell you how much I miss you. We-we all miss you. We love you very much." Anakin looked down and attempted to quell the flood of tears now flowing down his cheeks. "I have tried and failed to bring you back to us. I am sorry for that my love. It was not the will of the force. Why my heart continues to beat is beyond me. Nothing is the same without you. I know that wherever you spend eternity, you will spend it watching over and loving us just as much as we love you. How do I go on with this scar across my heart? I don't know if I can do this with you, but I-I will do it because I know that is what you would've wanted. If only I could hold you one last time. You will always --- be my angel." Anakin allowed the flood of tears to flow. He held his forehead with his mechanical hand, fell to his knees and sobbed. Never before had Anakin felt pain like this since his mother passed.

Padme kneeled before him and placed a hand on his cheek. Her touch was full of love and warmth. She stroked him with her thumb and bathed Anakin in her love.

Anakin, the great Jedi warrior--chosen one, indeed had a weakness and a fear that almost eclipsed his power and skill as a knight. It was love. His ability to love so completely could compel Anakin to do great and terrible things. But it was his depth of control that kept this whirlwind of chaos in check.

Anakin's eyes snapped open and saw the first rays of sunlight burst through the balcony doors. He realized that through the night, he must have moved from the chair to the side of the bed where he was now kneeling and he head was resting on the surface buried in his arms. He realized that seeing Padme was just a dream, but the tears he shed in it were real. He sensed Padme's presence but ignored knowing that he was still grieving for her. Anakin realized a strange thing was happening. Although the dream was not real, he still felt the warmth of Padme's hand on his cheek and he moved his left hand to the spot where she touched. He discovered to his astonishment that someone's hand actually was there. He lifted his head from his folded arms on the bed and turned to see who it was.

And there sitting in the bed was Padme, smiling with her cheeks soaked in her tears. Anakin stood and sat on the bed and stared at her not sure if it was dream or reality. He blinked several times and swallowed, "P-Padme?"

She chuckled happily and nodded, "Yes, my love. I am here."

Anakin slowly and hesitantly raised his left hand to touch her cheek. He prayed to the force that she would not be an aberration-that his hand would not pass through her. He bit his bottom lip to keep it from trembling. His hand finally made contact with her soft warm skin. Padme sobbed and embraced him, "Oh Ani, You did it! You brought me home. You -you brought me---home!" Tears of happiness poured from her eyes.

It took a moment before it registered that the force had granted his petition for Padme's return. He slowly closed his arms around her and held on tight. He whispered, "Angel." and buried his head in her hair and wept.

The end

(You guys didn't really think I was going to let Padme go, right?)

Thanks to everyone who read and replied for this story. I hoped you all enjoyed reading itas much as I enjoyed writing it. Thank you all for your support.