AN: This is going to a rather different story than what you guys are used to seeing from me (hence the note at the BEGINNING!) ; ) The T rating is actually legitimate this time, and we are jumping right into the middle of things.

Warning: Angst ahead as well as some tragedy (death of a major character) - but I urge you to read it anyway. It will be bittersweet in the end with lots of romance along the way. Keep in mind that this story is not entirely my fault. The plot bunny that bit me was rabid: )


Always

By Ticklesivory

Chapter One

A beautiful young woman stood in the shadows of the Theed hangar next to the massive door that led to the main palace. Her eyes were focused on the exit at the opposite end of the long building, the forests of Naboo revealed beyond it.

The mechanics who busied themselves about the massive space paid her little notice. It was a common occurrence over the past year. She would stand silent and still, waiting for the sound that would bring an inevitable smile to her face. The sound of a Jedi starfighter. Only then would she emerge from the shadows.

It was no secret amongst the palace staff what she was doing there, and who she was for that matter. Although she typically donned her own handmaiden's attire, everyone realized it was the queen herself who waited so patiently in the shadows for the man that she loved.

When the descent thrusters were heard, only brief glimpses were cast toward the arriving ship and then the workers quickly returned to their tasks. The young woman, however, moved promptly across the floor to greet her visitor.

The young man soon exited the ship, and as usual, had a singular focus. In long strides he was across the dark stone floor and soon in the arms of the beautiful young queen.

"Obi-Wan." The exclamation was muffled against the rough, nerf-hide Jedi robe he wore as Padmé threw her arms about him.

"I came as soon as I could." The young Jedi breathed into the long, dark silky hair, inhaling the sweet fragrance of it. "Master Qui-Gon has been keeping me busy getting me ready for my trials."

Another deep breath and Obi-Wan positioned his hands to cup her face, drawing her nearer in order to taste the delicate lips that opened so eagerly underneath him.

"How long?" Padmé whispered as the kiss ended and their foreheads gently touched together.

"About six tens." The young padawan replied with a smile, purposefully evading the true question.

"You know what I mean." Padmé lay her head against his chest and tightened her arms about him.

"Just a couple of days, I'm afraid. I was fortunate to be allowed those."

Padmé could feel the warmth of his breath against her hair, his muscular body pressed up against her, and she held him tighter still. "I know." She answered softly.

When they had met during the Interplantery Conference on Coruscant last year, it was understood that each of their duties would often keep them seperated for extended periods of time. It was a fact that they both had to consider.

But the feel of the strong arms around her and the thumping of a heart beating wildly against her cheek, reaffirmed that it was worth it. She would be satisfied with whatever time they could manage to share.

Speaking of time, the young woman opened her eyes, lifted her head and met the sparkling aquamarine gaze above her. Only two days to spend with the man she loved more than anything. What were they still doing standing in this hangar?

Pulling away and without the slightest hint of embarrassment, Padmé led Obi-Wan across the room.

"Let's take this somewhere more private."

Obi-Wan slid his arm about her waist as they walked. "My thoughts exactly." He murmured into her ear.

The couple quickly strolled through the marble hallways, barely able to keep their hands off of one another, the tension rising between them. Just a few more steps, Padmé thought. The door to her bedchamber was within sight.

She put her hand up to the scanner to open it, and nothing happened.

"Damn!" She muttered as Obi-Wan stood behind her. "I thought I asked Panaka to get this fixed!"

Another try yielded the same result, but her frustration was quickly quelled by the feel of a pair of soft lips moving up the back of her neck and a strong hand snaking from around her waist up to cup the fullness of her breast. Obi-Wan's thumb toyed with the nipple he felt underneath the thin fabric, bringing it to a peak.

Padmé's thought processes were no longer functioning, other than the overwhelming desire to be in her lover's arms, and she turned and frantically sought out his mouth with her own, a moan escaping her as their tongues delved together.

The movement of a slightly stubbled chin down her neck caused a shiver down to her toes.

"Obi-Wan?" She struggled to form the two syllables coherently as a pair of strong hands had moved to massage her buttocks and teeth nibbled along her throat.

"Hmm?"

"Can't you use the Force to open this door?"

"Sure." The handsome Jedi answered, but instead of doing so, continued to languorously explore the soft contours of her neck with his lips and tongue, slowly easing his way up to nibble on her earlobe.

Padmé felt as if the palace was tilting and the floor was sliding out from underneath her, but the feeling quickly dissipated as the sound of someone clearing their throat reached her muddled brain.

She glanced down the hall to meet the curious and quite comical gaze of a dear old friend.

"Senator Palpatine!"

Obi-Wan immediately backed away a couple of steps and bowed, adjusting his tunics before he straightened back up.

"What in the galaxy are you doing here?"