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A Matter of Trust

Chapter 17: A New Hope

Psion turned his saber aside and hopped on a nearby water speeder and headed off over the lake. Anakin jumped on the one they always used to travel back to Theed or to the island and followed her. Psion smirked evilly and smashed her speeder into Anakin's. Then, she flipped on to his speeder. Anakin flipped on the auto pilot and clashed his saber with hers. The water of the ocean sprayed up around them and began to soak them both.

"If you willingly come with me, I just might let your wife live. I'll even let you bring your son, for he will make a strong apprentice someday," Psion said. Anakin seethed at her.

"You will not take me from them and you will not harm them!" Anakin yelled back, as their sabers met furiously. Using the Force, Psion made the speeder swerve harshly. Anakin was thrown off balance and into the water. Underwater, Anakin scrambled for his breathing apparatus on his utility belt. He grabbed it quickly and placed it in his mouth. Psion was right in after him and she was also using a breathing apparatus. Anakin looked around and swam toward a nearby cavern. It looked like something the Gungans used and he quickly swam in with Psion right behind him. He swam inside the cavern and found that there was a bubble air around the inside of the cavern and it was not underwater. He pulled himself up onto the land. Psion was right behind him and their sabers ignited again, each with a snap hiss.

"Like the other Jedi that have fallen to me, so will you, for you are no match for the powers of the dark side," Psion said.

"Your overconfidence is your weakness and you underestimate the power of love. That will be your downfall, I promise you that," Anakin replied, as he circled her. With a fierce battle cry, Psion launched at him again and they exchanged saber blows furiously.

Obi-Wan Kenobi received clearance to land on Naboo. He knew that he was directly disobeying master Yoda, but he had a terrible feeling that Anakin and Padme had not made it off Naboo before Psion's arrival. He had convinced Sabe to stay on Alderaan with no small amount of effort. He promised her that he would return, but he would not leave his brother to the mercy of a Sith Lord that wanted him for her own and wanted nothing more than to murder his brother's wife. He landed the fighter in the meadow near the lake house and he could see Padme running to him frantically.

"Obi-Wan!" she cried. He hopped down from his fighter and grasped her arms, as she caught her breath. Tears were rolling down her beautiful face.

"Ani and Psion were on a water speeder in the middle of the lake. It swerved and Ani fell in. Psion went...after him, but they...haven't resurfaced," Padme cried.

"Shh...you need to calm down Padme. I'm sure Anakin had his breathing apparatus with him. I'll find him, don't worry. Go back to the ship with the twins and wait for us," Obi-Wan said.

"I'm going with you," Padme insisted.

"No Padme, go back to the ship," Obi-Wan ordered.

"Damn it Obi-Wan! I'm going after my husband and you can't stop me!" Padme yelled, as she headed for the nearby underwater sub ship. Obi-Wan shed his cloak and ran after her.

"Blasted stubborn woman," Obi-Wan muttered, understanding now what Anakin had been up against when they had decided to come to Geonosis to rescue him. He had scolded Anakin heavily for disobeying orders, but now he realized Anakin never stood a chance against Padme. He hopped in the driver's seat, making Padme sit in the passenger seat.

"I'll drive, you're as crazy as your husband is behind the wheel," Obi-Wan said. Padme smirked at him, as he fired up the engines.

He turned on the headlights and plunged the ship into the depths of the Nabooan ocean, his senses guiding him to his former padawan.

Anakin's muscles burned in protest, as he brought his saber up in an arc with hers.

"You're exhausted Anakin. You're not completely recovered from yesterday. I can sense the pain in the light saber burn on your side. Come with me peacefully, I really don't want to hurt you," Psion said.

"That's really nice of you, but I'm afraid I'll have to pass on your offer," Anakin replied sarcastically. Psion snarled, not amused. She pushed him back and shot Force lightning at him. Anakin brought his saber up to catch it. The blue lightning stuck Anakin's saber and he held the stream steady.

"You throw an awful lot of Force lightning around. Let's see how you like it," Anakin yelled, as he drew his saber back and thrust the lightning back at her. She stopped shooting her lightning and dodged out of the way. The lightning struck the ceiling of the cavern and rock began to crumble around them.

"That was a big mistake Anakin," Psion growled.

"You're the one shooting the Force lightning," Anakin retorted. Psion used the Force to pick up a rather large boulder and sent it barreling toward Anakin. Anakin outstretched his palms and stopped the oncoming boulder with the Force. The boulder hovered in the air, as Jedi and Sith fought for control over the object. Anakin won out, as he pushed the boulder aside and into a nearby wall. Psion smirked.

"You are powerful Anakin, I can see why my master was once interested in making you his apprentice," Psion said.

"Your master is murdering bastard! Because of him, countless Jedi lost their lives today, even children! I promise as long as there is breath in my body, that you and your master will never get near my wife and children!" Anakin said fiercely, as their sabers clashed again. Psion was growing tired of the delay, so she shot lightning at him again. Anakin blocked it again, but Psion was relentless this time. The lightning bypassed Anakin's saber, striking his hand. This caused him to drop his saber and it shut itself off as it clattered the ground. Psion then shot lightning into Anakin's abdomen, causing him to double over. Anakin screamed, as the pain was excruciating. He writhed on the ground in pain still, even after the lightning ceased. Psion approached him quickly and drew a syringe from her cloak. She jammed into the back of his neck. He cried out in pain, as the liquid burned going in. Anakin began to feel the effects of the drug right away, as he felt himself being cut off from the Force. He began to feel very groggy and he realized whatever else was in the drug was designed to lower his resistance and inhibition. The other part of the drug was obviously a highly potent ysalamiri serum.

"You're mine Anakin Skywalker," Psion said.

Suddenly, Obi-Wan felt Anakin's signature disappear in the Force.

"Ysalamiri serum," Obi-Wan muttered.

"What?" Padme asked.

"I think Psion has managed to administer the ysalamiri serum to Anakin. Padme looked horrified.

Fortunately, Obi-Wan was near the cave where he felt Anakin's force signature. He steered the sub in and arrived just in time to see Psion trying to lift a very drugged Anakin into the other sub.

"You won't interfere with my plans this time Kenobi. Anakin is mine. Thank you though for bringing the Senator right to me so I can kill her, Psion said.

"Padme?" Anakin questioned, looking around for her.

"I'm here Ani," Padme called.

"Sorry Senator, but your Ani is mine now," Psion replied.

"Oh I don't think so," Obi-Wan said.

Psion left Anakin leaning against her ship, as she drew her saber to go after Obi-Wan. As she and Obi-Wan fought, Padme slipped over to Anakin. She brushed the damp hair from his eyes.

"Ani, talk to me baby, please," Padme said, as she held his face in her hands. He opened his eyes and she could see that they were glassy.

"Oh Ani, what did she give you?" Padme asked.

"Padme, leave me. You...you have to get off Naboo...with the twins," Anakin mumbled.

"I'm not leaving without you Anakin, never ever," she replied. Padme looked over, only to see Psion sweep Obi-Wan's feet out from under him with a drop spin kick. She picked up Anakin's light saber and rolled it in her hand. She wasn't very skilled with it, but Anakin had taught her enough in the last six months to protect herself and the children if she ever needed to. Psion was too busy hovering over Obi-Wan, ready to plunged her saber through his heart to notice the snap hiss of Anakin's saber. Just as she was about to drive the saber through the Jedi master, Padme swiped Anakin's saber at the Sith's face. Psion sidestepped her just in time, but the saber grazed her cheek, painfully burning her. She cried out in pain, as she clutched the side of her face. The Sith felt her wound and realized how deep it was, assuring her that it would scar.

"YOU! I HATE YOU! I'll KILL YOU!" Psion screamed, losing control of her anger. Anakin opened his eyes, hearing Psion's hateful words toward Padme. He stumbled up and tried to reach her. Psion outstretched her fingers, ready to pour Force lightning into Padme's body. Padme clenched her eyes shut and waited for the pain to come. But what she felt was Anakin's arms around her, as he stepped in front of the attack, taking the brunt of the Force lightning in his back.

"ANAKIN!" Obi-Wan cried, as his former apprentice cried out in immense agony.

"ANI!" Padme cried, as they fell to the ground together in each other's arms.

"I'll finish you off after I deal with Kenobi," Psion promised, as she turned back to Obi-Wan.

She shot Force lightning at him, but Obi-Wan was prepared. Using the Force, he lifted a large boulder that blocked the Force lightning and sent it back at her. She was hit with her own attack and then the large boulder, knocking her unconscious. He knew she wouldn't be out for long, but long enough to get Anakin and Padme off the planet. He threw Anakin over his shoulder and put him in the passenger seat of the sub, while Padme climbed in beside him.

"Master?" Anakin groggily opened his eyes.

"It's all right Anakin, we're getting you out of here," Obi-Wan said.

"Padme," Anakin muttered.

"I'm here my love," Padme's voice soothed him and her touch to his cheek somehow seemed to ease the residual pain coursing through his body.

"I took care of her for time being. You'll be safely away in hyperspace before she catches up," Obi-Wan said, as he took control of the ship and ascended to the surface.

Obi-Wan carried Anakin onto Padme ship and to the med bay. He carefully laid him on the table.

"Dorme and I will treat him Obi-Wan. I can't thank you enough for coming, but you have to get off Naboo before she wakes up," Padme said.

"I will Padme, make sure Typho takes off right away. I'll be in contact with you soon to see how Anakin is doing," Obi-Wan said, as he hugged her quickly.

"I wish it didn't have to be like this," Padme said.

"We're family Padme and it won't always be like this. We won't hide forever, only until it's time to take action. May the Force be with you all," Obi-Wan said, as he quickly departed.

"You too Obi-Wan," Padme replied, as she and Dorme strapped Anakin in and then themselves, as they took off. Once they were safely in hyperspace, Padme and Dorme began to tend to Anakin.

"Ani, can you hear me?" Padme asked.

"Padme?" he asked.

"I'm here baby. Dorme is going to take a blood sample so we can see what she injected you with so we can treat you," Padme said. Anakin nodded, as Dorme took the blood sample and ran it through the scanner. After a few moments, the results came back. Padme lazily ran her fingers through his hair, comforting him while he slept off the effects of the drug and the Force lightning.

"What are the results?" Padme asked.

"The majority of the drug was ysalamiri, which is why Anakin can't feel the Force. The other remnants are from a drug called Serelium." Dorme said.

"What's Serelium?" Padme asked.

"It's an illegal Corellian drug that lowers a person's inhibition and resistance," Dorme said.

"So, he would have been putty in her hands," Padme said, gritting her teeth in anger toward the Sith.

"I'm afraid so. She could have told him that she was you and he wouldn't have known the difference until the drug wore off," Dorme replied. Padme shook her head angrily.

"So in other words, she wanted nothing more than to get him in her bed!" Padme said angrily.

"I'm afraid so milady, but the important thing is that she didn't succeed," Dorme reminded her. Padme sighed deeply and nodded, before moving back to Anakin's side.

"He'll be fine Padme. I've just given him a sedative so he can sleep it all off. He'll be up and around in a few days, I promise," Dorme assured her. Padme smiled, as they heard a knock at the med bay door.

"Come in Captain," Padme replied.

"How is he doing?" Typho asked.

"He'll be okay, he just needs a lot of rest," Padme smiled. Typho smiled back.

"That's good news. Artoo relayed your parent's hyperspace trajectory before we took off. We're only a few hours behind them. Artoo is scanning for a suitable planet for us in the outer rim and it could be days before he finds anything. Fortunately, we have enough food stores on board to last us weeks," Typho informed her.

"Good, I hope he finds something soon," Padme said.

"Me too milady," Typho replied.

Obi-Wan Kenobi secretly arrived at he and Sabe's new home in the Alderaan mountains several hours later. The cabin was small and cozy with modest furniture and all the necessities for living.

"Obi-Wan, thank the Force you're all right!" Sabe cried, as she threw her arms around him. Obi-Wan hugged her tightly and pressed his lips to hers in a passionate kiss.

"Are Anakin and Padme okay?" she asked. Obi-Wan nodded.

"It's a long story, but yes, they made it off Naboo," Obi-Wan replied. Sabe and Obi-Wan sat down together, holding each other close as they talked about everything that had happened.

"Skywalker has escaped?" Sidious asked.

"I'm afraid so my master. I had him and then Kenobi and the Senator interfered again," Psion replied angrily.

"You will find them and have your revenge. The important thing is that our plans have worked. We have ended the war and our new Empire will create a stable environment for everyone," Sidious said.

"Yes master and those who oppose us shall fall. Construction on the death star has already begun my master," Psion said.

"Very good my young apprentice. If you serve me well, then you will have everything you want," Sidious said, as they stood on the bridge of Sidious' new Imperial cruiser. Psion touched the painful wound on her face, which had already began to scar over. The scar stretched from her cheekbone to her chin. The hate and anger toward Padme Skywalker burned brightly like the twin suns of Tatooine. Sidious smiled evilly, as he felt the depths of her hate and anger.

Nearly a week had passed since they left Naboo. Anakin had been out of it for about three days thanks to the very potent drug. He finally began to regain the feeling of the Force around him on the fourth day. But Padme had been insistent that he take it easy, due to the fact that he was still sore from the impact of the Force lightning. Though they were all going a little bit stir crazy on the ship, he had enjoyed the quiet time with his family. He hoped that Artoo soon found them a suitable planet for them to live on, for they all missed fresh air. Anakin went up to the cockpit to check Artoo's progress.

"Hey Artoo, how goes the search?" Anakin asked. Artoo beaped enthusiastically.

"You think you found a place?" Anakin asked in a hopeful tone. Artoo booped affirmatively and brought the schematics of the planet he was talking about onto the screen in front of Anakin.

"Andea. I've never even heard of it, so it's likely that not many other people have either," Anakin said. Artoo beeped in agreement.

"Wow Artoo, you've done an excellent job. The planet appears to be similar in climate and texture to Naboo. Lots of bodies of water, which Padme will love. No sand for miles and miles, which I love," Anakin chuckled. Artoo chirped in what Anakin had come to think of as Artoo's own electronic chuckle.

"Ani, did Artoo find something?" Padme asked, as she came into the cockpit.

"He sure did angel, take a look at this planet," Anakin said, as he pulled her down into his lap. Padme's eyes looked over the information and she smiled.

"Oh it sounds perfect Ani," she said.

"Good, because we're only about an hour away," Anakin replied, as he kissed her.

"I'll go tell everyone and get the twins ready!" Padme said with excitement. She kissed him quickly, as she bounced up and bounded out of the cockpit. Anakin laughed, as he watched her go and he could hear beautiful voice tell Typho and Dorme the good news.

The planet Andea was a beautiful place with very friendly people. It was like an undiscovered jewel in the outer rim. The people liked it that way and the Skywalker family had to meet with the queen herself before they were given the permission to settle on the planet. They met with the queen in Andea city, the capital, soon after they were allowed to land at a local port. They explained to the queen that they sought a peaceful place to raise their children. When they stated their names, the queen immediately recognized them, for they had the holonet broadcasts even out this far in the outer rim. They had been a little nervous by that at first, but the queen assured them that it would be unlikely that any of the citizens would recognize them, as most paid little attention to the holonet and cared little for what went on in the Republic. The kind queen welcomed the former Senator of the Republic and former Jedi Knight to her planet. For the next few days, Dorme and Typho stayed with the twins, while Anakin and Padme searched for a place to settle. Money really wasn't a worry for them, seeing as Padme was quite independently wealthy being that she was a Senator in the former Republic. Being fond of water, Anakin and Padme decided on a lake house since they missed their home on Naboo so much. The place was near the Andean ocean and the massive Andean falls that roared through the valley of their new home. They were not far outside the capital city at all, their house residing in a village suburb of the capital. Ruwee, Jobal, Sola and Darred found a spacious home in a meadow about a mile away from Anakin and Padme's place. Over the next few days, the two families settled into their new homes and their new lives.

Anakin, Padme, Dorme and Typho finished moving the last of their things into their new home. Dorme and Typho had just gone to bed, while Anakin and Padme were putting the twins to bed. Anakin smiled, as he listened to Padme sing the twins to sleep from the doorway. He came up behind her and peered down into their cribs, while wrapping his arms around her waist. They kissed their little angels goodnight and went to their new bedroom. Both knew that the road ahead of them would not be easy, but they took comfort in the fact that they walk it together. Padme feathered her fingers along her firmly muscled chest. He pulled her close and kissed her deeply, slowly moving his lips down to the nape of her neck. They moved to the bed and collapsed on it together.

"I love you Padme and I promise everything will turn out okay. We just have to trust in our love and in the Force," Anakin told her, as he kissed her deeply and passionately. She looked up at him, longing and desire etched over her features.

"I know Ani. I'm never scared when you're near, because I know that everything will be all right as long as we're together," Padme replied, as she pulled him down, slanting her mouth over his.

"I'll love you forever angel," Anakin said breathlessly.

"And I you, Ani," Padme replied, as they let the passion and love that flowed so effortlessly between them take over. They both knew things could have turned out much, much worse. They didn't know how, but the Force was telling them that by following their hearts, they had done the right thing. They knew that together, there was nothing that they couldn't accomplish. Together, the Skywalker's would free the galaxy from it's oppression.

The End

To be continued in A Matter of Hope...the sequel to A Matter of Trust. Coming soon!