Title: "Whisper" (1/1)

Written by: Shawn

Summary: Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but can also whither your soul and breed doubt in your heart.

Rating: a very hard R Category: Angsty Erotica Ship: Anakin and Padmé Skywalker

Timeline/Spoilers: I have always assumed the Clone Wars last three and a half years. With that in mind this story takes place fairly into the Clone Wars.

Disclaimer: George Lucas owns it all.

My personal archive: http/groups. Email:

Authors Notes 1: Padmé and Anakin have been separated for several weeks at the beginning of this story. They parted angrily over issues discussed within the story.

Authors Notes 2: Just to refresh your memory, Palo is the man Padmé told Anakin about in "Attack of the Clone" when they were talking by the waterfalls. He was her first kiss when she was twelve years old.

Authors Notes 3: This is heavy on the sexual content.

Beta Read by: Master Anne


"If it is meant to be, our hearts will find each other when we meet. And if our hearts melt together so will our bodies and souls. Then every word and every touch will fuel our passion flame. I will be yours, you will be mine, and we will be one." - author unknown

"Be patient wild eyes. Soon will come a storm to tame you. Let her winds surround you. Match her fury and let fires reign. There is no escape. Nature means what she does." - author unknown


Galaxies Opera House Inside a double turbo-lift Galactic City, Coruscant

Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, flanked by four Red Guards, looked to his right through the clear glass hub as night fell over Galactic City. The bronze-red heat trails of several HoloNet droid-cams rose with them, broadcasting their arrival at this most prestigious event. Coruscant's orbital mirrors reflected pale-blue moonlight off the droid's silver shells. "In spite of our best efforts I see the press mongers have found us."

Palpatine favored Senator Amidala with a fatherly smile. "Nonetheless, I am anticipating a spectacular evening. And I am most pleased to be in your company again, Padmé."

The casual use of her first named carried an intimate element of friendship Padmé no longer felt towards him, no matter the more than amicable past they once shared. She had more than a few choice words for him over a number of real issues but saw no reason to make that an issue, at least not tonight.

"The Ithorian Celestial Symphony has been heralded across the galaxy as one of the most eloquent and beautiful concerts ever conceived. To be present on its opening night at the Galaxies Opera House is an honor. Again, I must thank you for your gracious invitation," Padmé said to the Supreme Chancellor.

Palpatine graced her with a modest wave of his hand and then a gentlemanly nod to her date for the evening. Palo seemed a bit awestruck in his presence, fidgeting slightly by the Senator's side. "It was my pleasure, I assure you. During these troubling days of war one must take time for oneself in order to recharge the sprit needed to conquer what lies ahead." He acknowledged each of the three-member personal security team she traveled with by respectfully making direct eye contact with them. "And if I might be ever so blunt, a glass of good brandy while enjoying a marvelous show doesn't sound like a bad way to spend an evening."

Good-natured snickering lifted about the turbo-lift.

Achieving his desired effect of lightening the mood around him... all except Padmé, Palpatine noted how her date could not seem to steal his eyes away from her. While he was far above such frivolousness, he certainly hadn't expected the esteemed Senator from Naboo to dress so provocatively tonight. Perhaps the recent HoloNet appraisal of her being "cold, detached and vastly untouchable" struck a rebellious cord within her. As if his special "arrangement" for the evening wasn't enough to further his long-term goals, Palpatine's slight surprise that she did not come alone only sweetened the deal.

Dressed confidently in very expensive black Calimar evening wear, Palo considered himself one of the luckiest men alive to be accompanying Padmé to tonight's gala event. As if the chance to get to know her on a personal level again weren't enough, her sultry, flare-styled red dress exposed the smooth skin of her shapely legs to perfection. Its spaghetti straps, smocked waistline and asymmetrical hem were a fiery combination that could scorch daylight itself. She looked breathtaking, and the knowledge that she was single and considered something of a social recluse left him very hopeful.

Palo bent down towards Padmé's ear and whispered, "You are the most incredibly beautiful, sensual woman in the entire galaxy."

"Thank you, Palo." Padmé gave him a friendly smile, hoping to convey that she would only ever see him as just that, a friend. When his hand gently brushed against hers in a show of affection she pulled away from his touch as if the sensation burned her skin. Only one man had the right to caress her in that way, and though she was furious with him at the moment, she longed for him as well. "You look very handsome this evening."

The softly scented coils of Padmé's thick, long hair drew him ever closer to her. With the Supreme Chancellor holding court by telling the security detail a humorous story of some kind, he allowed himself the luxury of absorbing her presence. Just three short days ago while he was sketching the outline for a commissioned painting of Coruscant's dawn skyline, a chance meeting with his childhood friend at the Galactic Senate Hall led to a friendly-shared lunch.

Palo could tell Padmé was genuinely surprised to see him. The feeling was mutual to say the least.

Over Nabooian Senta tea they conversed, and all the while he stared at her beauty with an artist's eye. She had grown into such a formidable woman. Fearless, clever, and capable as any he had ever crossed paths with before. The young girl he first met in the Legislative Youth Program had become a powerful, wealthy, and very well known Senator. The years weren't so kind to him, and so what he told her of his current life was an abbreviated, perhaps exaggerated overview.

Padmé wore no commitment ring, nor had she any significant other to speak of when he asked. She was ripe for the taking. Having seduced many women in his lifetime, she could be Palo's masterpiece. He had given her the first kiss of her life, and his intentions were to satisfy the sad, lonely, sheltered woman she hid from the galaxy.

Women like that were easy prey to him.

So, when she told him that she had been invited to tonight's opening performance and needed an evening away from the life of a Senator, he jumped at the chance to escort her. She was very straightforward in explaining that they were going only as friends, though her choice of decadent attire, as well as common sense that the HoloNet gossip hounds would assume many things just because they arrived together, led him to the conclusion that she felt something when she saw him again. Something he felt as soon as he saw her.

Palo intended for tonight to be the first night of many spent alone with her.

Padmé, on the other hand, had something else entirely on her mind.

The earthy scent of his cologne only amplified that he was standing a little bit to close for comfort. Unfortunately for her she had nowhere to go. The turbo-lift's engines hummed softly as they approached the grand entrance of the legendary Galaxies Opera House.

Padmé needed tonight more than she was annoyed by Palo's not so subtle attempts to draw her attention. The war's two and a half year anniversary passed just a few days ago, and with it came no sign that the Senate was any closer to arriving at a peaceful solution. The death toll had reached catastrophic figures, causing her sleep to be even more restless than before.

Palpatine seemed as interested in keeping the war going as he did in finding a way to end it. Behind the scenes he cleverly seized more executive powers while ignoring the Senate's recommendations, and the Jedi's warning, that this war could not go on much longer. Partisan bickering and corruption were running rampant despite her best efforts to bridge everyone's differences.

The stress of the war and her duty had begun to take a heavy toll on Padmé. One she hid well behind a facade of cool, emotionless determination. It was only in the dead of night that she most truly felt it. When her mind played tricks on her by allowing doubt to creep in. She stayed up late most nights just to see if there was any word on Anakin. She hung on every broadcast when his name was mentioned and was only able to sleep when it was reported he had survived again.

Rest still did not come to her. Nor peace of mind or any joy at all.

Padmé hadn't seen Anakin in several weeks. The last time they were together they argued bitterly and parted on very bad terms. His accusations that her duty as a Senator meant more to her than their marriage, because she wouldn't leave it behind the way he would the Jedi to be with her, hurt more than anything had before. She accused him of not caring about the people of the Republic the way that he should, to which he countered that he cared more for her. What was supposed to have been a five-day stay on Coruscant turned into barely twenty-four hours.

Padmé considered that alone may have had a great deal to do with why things were so bad between them. She missed him with all her heart and soul. It wasn't necessary to ponder if it was ego that led her to know he felt the same way. They were stuck in the middle of this ugly, never-ending war. Their love was hidden in the shadows of lies and far too few stolen nights. What was worse, they were now angry at each other when they should have banded together even more.

And then there was that stupid HoloNet exposé on Padmé that, for whatever reason, got to her a great deal. What she had expected to be a recap of her political accomplishments and views turned into a sweeping tabloid report on her deficient social life, her bland fashion sense, and her ability to intimidate men to such a degree that the tactless HoloNet reporter said she was in serious jeopardy of becoming a spinster.

So, for one night Padmé wanted to be... she wanted to show... there was a need within her she did not quite understand to be defiant. She wanted to dress like a woman intending to break a man's spirit the moment he saw her. She wanted out of her lonely apartment. She wanted to enjoy herself and not think about all the problems in her life and how she couldn't fix even one of them.

She wanted for one night to not miss her Ani so much she fell asleep with tears in her eyes. And if he caught wind of her attending this opening with a man from wherever he was in the galaxy she secretly hoped it burned him up inside with jealousy.

"... was simply astounding. I was most impressed with the way Anakin disabled the speeder by somersaulting over it and slashing its fuel cell while upside down. The fact that he did this with the speeder racing toward him at top speed only exemplified his immense skill and bravery," Palpatine recounted last night's HoloNet broadcast of Anakin's latest adventure. His gaze fell upon Padmé for the briefest of moments, as if making sure she had heard what he said, and then he continued, "It was one of the most spectacular maneuvers I had ever seen."

"Knight Skywalker is quite clever indeed," Palo commented with something of a nonchalant attitude. "But true bravery can't be found in disabling a speeder. He is something of a glory hound in my humble opinion. The HoloNet's poster boy is paraded around for ratings more than any real accomplishments. He could have done something truly extraordinary by defeating Count Dooku at the start of the war. Alas, he was easily defeated and permanently scarred."

Palpatine took a step toward the man, his hands clasped before him. "The speeder that Anakin disabled was being flown by a known weapons supplier for the Separatists. He was not only captured alive, but from what I understand, key intelligence was gained from him. Anakin again proved his abilities have not been overblown for the media's sake, but because his skill is unmatched in all the galaxy."

Sensing he may have crossed an invisible line, Palo quickly backtracked. "I... I mean no disrespect, I assure you. I, like most of the galaxy is well aware of your friendship with Knight Skywalker."

A Sabbac-bluff of an expression on Padmé's face hid her feelings on the matter well. No matter what role she was to play in future events, Palpatine had always maintained a healthy respect for her. She was misguided and headstrong, though he did appreciate her ability to keep a secret. The least of which were her true feelings on any subject if she didn't want you to know what they were.

Such ability was nearly a match for his own.

Palpatine turned to Padmé. "I would love to hear your thoughts on the matter. Anakin told me he counts you as one of his closest friends."

The veiled statement made to her was clear, though Padmé saw no reason to give Palpatine any more reason to ponder her "friendship" with Anakin. "I would prefer that for one evening we leave all talk of the war and those who fight it out of our minds. I'm sure you of all people can understand that."

Delighted to do as she asked, Palpatine bowed his head before her. "You're quite right." The turbo-lift finally came to a gentle halt. The loud commotion just outside the shutter doors was evidence enough the HoloNet press reporters and droid-cams were awaiting them. "Padmé, the floor we shall enjoy the symphony from is heavily guarded by my personal security teams. You and Palo will have your own private booth. You can, if you choose, allow your security detail to take in the show with the crowds below."

The idea of being alone with Palo wasn't what she had planned tonight. Still, he was an old friend and they could enjoy the show together so long as he understood how things were between them. "That would be fine. Thank you."

"Think nothing of it, Padmé."

While Padmé instructed her guards to enjoy themselves tonight, Palo mentally rubbed his hands together. The Galaxy Opera House's private V.I.P booths were quite intimate and cozy. He would have Padmé all to himself for hours. Especially without the "old man" watching his every move.

At that very moment Palo felt Palpatine's stare fall upon him, almost as if he had heard his thoughts. The aging Supreme Chancellor simply smiled.

"Let us enjoy our evening," Palpatine said as one of his Red Guards opened the turbo-lifts shutter doors.

The brilliantly lit and immaculately decorated main entrance hallway was covered with alien HoloNet reporters representing over a hundred worlds. No less than twenty hovering droid-cams focused squarely on the Supreme Chancellor and his entourage. The red carpet was laid out for the powerful, rich and politically connected to arrive.

It was a star-studded event to say the least.

A sudden rage came over Padmé when Palo took her hand in his as they walked the carpet behind Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. She had no interest in causing a scene, though she knew the cameras would focus on the man holding her hand and draw their own conclusions.

If Anakin saw this... well, she was glad he wasn't on Coruscant for Palo's sake.


15 Minutes Later


With Palo ordering their drinks, Padmé gazed out over the broad Kessel-wood balcony at the extravagant stage area below. Ithorian singers, musicians, and dancers were gathering behind a massive sheer curtain as the symphony was set to begin in mere moments. HoloNet reviews of the concert often used the words "spellbinding" "magnificent" and "unforgettable" to describe their performance.

Her restless mood gently faded as an evening of beautiful music and artistic dance lay before her. For a brief time she intended to set aside her troublesome life and embrace the show entitled "The Birth of a Galaxy."

The upper row V.I.P booths were designed for privacy as much as comfortable luxury. Dark, Meza-absorbing fabric covered the lounge chairs and conformed to any and all alien body types for maximum satisfaction. The booth's dimly-lit ambiance kept with the intimacy of symphony as the atmosphere alone charmed her. If only Anakin were here with her.

"Stop that," Padmé quietly scolded herself as she sought to relax. She was so tired of worrying about him, and them, that she simply wished it all away for the time being. Her anger, sadness, and frustration could wait for a few hours until she went home.

The assembly of Coruscant's elite was something to truly behold, especially during a time of war. Padmé recalled seeing Raith Seinar on tonight's red carpet. Flanked by no less than three female dates, the incredibly powerful and wealthy owner of Seinar Systems was nearly as big a name as one could hope to see tonight right after the Supreme Chancellor himself. Tundra Dowmeia, Malastarian Senator Ask Ask, and Alderan Senator Bail Organa were others she recognized before the throng of popular actors, models, sports stars, and industrialists took to the red carpet. In total, tonight's opening performance had attracted no less than a crowd of over three thousand.

Among them all Padmé stood out, and for once even posed for a couple of photo ops. So unlike herself, and yet that was the entire purpose of tonight. She longed, for even a short time, to shed Senator Amidala's thick, unapproachable exterior and rediscover the woman within. Never one to fight for a man's attention, she'd received as many if not more second glances tonight than any other woman when she walked by. Had she mistaken their looks of wanton desire? Hardly. If anything they added a little spice to her evening.

When Padmé Naberrie Amidala wanted to she could set the town on fire.

"Tattoian bless wine, as you requested." Palo offered the chandelier-glass to her, and then took the seat by her side. "I hope it's to your liking?"

"It is. Thank you."

Palo gazed at the smooth, regal column of her throat as she drank from her glass. This woman had a sensuality about her that was as effortless as it was effective. Perhaps she would turn out to be demure and lacking in passion when it came to the carnal ways, though he wouldn't care if that were the case. She was beautiful, wealthy, and influential. If she fell in love with him, those aspects alone would make up for any deficiencies she might have behind closed doors. No doubt she would be easily controllable due to her feminine emotions. "You're most welcome."

Padmé inhaled a deep, cleansing breath, and then settled back in her chair, ready to enjoy the evening.

"Would you like a neck message?"

Part of her wanted to laugh in his face, yet she spared his pride. What she truly craved tonight was something primal and raw to make her feel alive. She doubted Palo could do more than annoy her at best. "No thank you, Palo. I assure you I am well-relaxed." The soft smile she offered him hopefully conveyed that she was pleased to have his company this evening.

"Perhaps another time." Palo sipped at his drink, ever mindful of the unopened bottle of Tattoian bless wine he hid behind his chair. If Padmé wanted another drink... and so on until the night ended the way he planned. While living such a pathetically solitary lifestyle she had to be literally climbing the walls for some "male attention."

As the stage's brilliant lights began to dim, Padmé leaned forward. An elaborate array of emerald holographic beams began dancing about the massive opera hall. She felt honored to be here. "The symphony is about to begin."

"This is wonderful, you know."

"It is, isn't it?"

Palo looked from the crowded stage and then back to his date. "No, I mean us being together again. It's wonderful to have the opportunity to get to know someone from your childhood and see who they grew up to become."

His words spoke of what she had hoped for their evening to entail, though his stare was of a man seeking a woman's intimate notice. The cute boy once upon a time grew to become a moderately handsome man. His hair was still dark and curly as she remembered. His dreamy eyes weren't as dreamy as those of a certain Jedi she loved. Alas, his efforts were futile at best. "Yes, indeed," was her reply.

Onstage, the tall, gentle herbivores who hailed from the planet Ithor stood to attention. It was believed that their long necks allowed for a certain airflow that caused their voices to carry a more harmonious sound than other races.

The conductor took his customary pre-performance bow as the entire opera house loudly applauded. A massive semi-circle of musicians surrounded him, while a few rows back another set of performers made up the center of the orchestra.

As the softly melodic music began to play Padmé tried to identify all the instruments just the same way she did as a child when her father took her to her first symphony. There were more than she had heard before, and never played so beautifully as they were now. She opened herself up to the music, allowing it a place in her very soul. The rhythm triggered her emotions as she closely followed the tunes. She watched how the musicians and the conductor interacted with each other.

Palo observed how at ease Padmé finally seemed in his company. As subtle as he could he slipped his hand over hers, and then attempted to curl around it. She politely gave his hand a little pressure, and then extracted her hand back into her lap. Unwanted was what that gesture said, though he took it to mean his advance was too much to soon.

On the other hand, Padmé hoped that was his last attempt to turn tonight into anything more than it was. An evening out with a friend. The magical performance they were being treated to held her attention captive in its wake. The music reawakened something within her. Something warm and intimate that she hadn't felt since...

And then it began.

A heated flush suddenly swept over Padmé's entire body. She blinked and then easily referenced it as her reaction to the alcohol in her drink. Some gentle after-effect of the wine Anakin loved so dearly that she had grown fond of as well. The second rush of warmth that slowly flooded her senses carried with it a tender phantom caress of sorts. The humidity seemed to increase around her as a... dare she say, a pleasurable tension coiled in her belly.

Padmé's hand rested there as her skin tingled anew. When her gaze fell from the stage she swallowed hard in the back of her throat. A feather-like touch ghosted over her lower back, familiar and yet impossible, it seemed to entice rather than give her cause for alarm. She recognized her reaction to this as arousal, though that made no sense to her at all. She felt nothing resembling that for Palo.

And then the tenor of the music changed. The pitch and tempo rose to a crescendo that... and then she heard soft moaning... a barely audible heavy breathing in the back of her mind as she closed her eyes momentarily and tried to focus on whatever had come over her.

The images were powerful and clear... visions of her naked form in the rain on Naboo. Her body felt liquid moist as she experienced an ethereal brush with the night her husband had made love to her under the natural showers of a thunderstorm when they visited the Lake Country several months ago. Oh, how he had taken her on the wide-open grasslands, surrounded by nature and their ardent cries of passion.

Padmé's eyes popped open when the feel of a warm mouth closed around her breast. Her unseen lover began suckling the hardened tip to the point her legs unconsciously crossed in her chair. Just underneath the surface of the performance below she listened to the music of her making love to Anakin, of her husky voice pleading for the release he loved to deny her, only to suddenly drive her mad until she exploded around him, her nails clawing at his back.

None of what she was feeling made any sense to her. Of course she missed Anakin terribly, but to this degree? Her thighs felt as if strong hands were massaging them. The heat of his breath on her neck caused her to moan against the hand she was forced to cover her mouth with. She ducked away from Palo when the sensation of a tongue lashed her clit, stroking her furiously toward what she knew simply could not be possible.

With her heart pounding inside her chest, Padmé shifted in her chair, flushed and bothered as the pressure built in her lower regions. Her body had never reacted this way before, strung tight as any instrument being played tonight. Her eyes shut again, and she was back on the floor of her apartment, with Anakin's head buried between her thighs, his hungry mouth devouring her like a juicy piece of fruit, rendering her boneless from one orgasm to the next.

She couldn't utter a single word nor did she want to, because as insane as all this was the tension grew sweeter by the moment until she somehow squeaked loudly through a small orgasm that was drowned out by a round of thunderous applause for the musicians.

Palo seemingly had fallen in love with the performance and missed the whole experience. Padmé clapped wildly while trying to regain her composure. What had just happened to her was beyond abnormal, no matter how pleasurable it was. What was worse, she felt wired and so desperate for much more than that minor tremor. Sadly, any satisfaction she received tonight would be self given and hollow at best.

If only...

And then there was a knock at the door of their V.I.P booth. Padmé looked on as Palo rose from his chair to answer it.

"Yes?" Palo asked the tall, silver messenger droid.

"I have a message from Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. He begs your pardon in advance, but he needs to speak with the Senator for a brief moment. He said it was urgent."

"Thank you. I'll be right there." At this point Padmé needed some air and a moment alone to collect herself. Any reason would do, and this was as good as any. "I'll return shortly," she told Palo.

Palo bowed in a gentlemanly fashion as the door shut behind her. "And when you return I shall be waiting with another full glass of Tattoian bless wine and a shoulder for you to cry your lonely eyes out on," he smiled evilly. "After all, a woman with as wealthy an estate as yours needs a man to guide her through life."


The vaulted, darkly shadowed hallway outside her private booth was a sanctuary.

Padmé's fair complexion was blushed crimson, and she exhaled a deep breath of air in an effort to calm her breathing. Whatever had just happened moments ago shook her to the very core of her being. Her nerves were tense, strung tight as if she were on high alert for some unforeseen danger. She walked at a brisk pace toward the Supreme Chancellor's V.I.P. booth while humming vibrations still coursed throughout her body.

Specially-trained Republic Clone Troopers assigned to guard Palpatine lined much of the corridor. They bowed respectfully when she passed.

Rows of unused V.I.P booths lined the immense curved walls. Rounding a corner, she entered an empty hall that led toward her destination. Where were the guards, she briefly wondered to herself?

With each step Padmé took she experienced a sudden light-headedness and then sensed...

A strong arm shot out of a door she had just passed and looped around her waist, while a hand quickly covered her mouth. She screamed mute against this hand, biting at the fingers while being quickly dragged inside one of the empty booths. She twisted and kicked as hard as she could to get away from her abductor, though his superior height, weight, and strength easily overwhelmed her.

Oddly enough, as she battled with all her might she felt far more anger than fear. Suddenly, her back was firmly set against a wall in the corner. Her right hand shot out, clawing at her assailant's face, her left hand shoved at his chest. Her fierce attempts to get away were swept asunder. Without warning a hot mouth crashed against hers, hungrily devouring her lips. She grunted hard through clenched teeth, struggling to break free, to shift away from...

Her attacker's mouth sucked wildly on her lips, blazing a fiery trail she strained to break free of until the scent... his scent... Anakin's scent roused her soul. Until his towering height and the heat of his kiss caused her fingers to dig into his broad shoulders. It was him... Force be praised it was him.

A roaring fire had been lit, and now it was burning out of control.

The how and whys were forgotten as Padmé gave in to the gloriously decadent taste of him as he literally ate her mouth. She grabbed at his long hair, sensually hissing between her parted lips. His arms held her so tightly she could feel his heart pounding through her chest. They were engaged in something so primal the ability to talk simply did not exist.

Cloaked in the booth's utter darkness, her lungs greedily sucked in air when his teeth clamped down on her neck, biting and then lashing a wet tongue over the small wound. Pleasure/pain amplified the fierce edge of his love for her. She was gasping for more of this man. "Ani... Oh, Ani."

The only thing capable of eclipsing his bitter jealousy tonight was having her in his arms again. Padmé was Anakin's unquenchable thirst. His sweet surrender. The entire galaxy could whither and die so long as he had her. So long as he could hear her making those soft little sounds in the back of her throat that left him rigid with need.

"I saw you," Anakin groaned against her lips and then slipped his hand between her thighs, cupping the slick cleft of her sex. His mind caught fire once he realized she hadn't worn underwear tonight. "I saw you with," he could not finish when she began whining softly as he stroked her, his thumb grazing her swollen clit until she could barely stand. "With him!"

Padmé gritted her teeth amidst the exquisite pleasure when two fingers plunged deeply inside her. "Yes," was her retort, pushing his anger and jealousy to a new extreme. Tonight she craved his darkness and the side of him that needed to possess her. She wanted him barely able to control himself, tightrope walking a thin line of sanity. All to make her feel what she hadn't felt in weeks.

Alive.

Air escaped her lungs in a rush when his hands ripped and then bunched her dress up high on her thighs. She watched him shove his pants down to the floor and then kick them away. His thick, hard erection bobbed proudly before her. She knew in that instant she was going to be taken hard until he had sated his raging hunger.

Yes, she had provoked him. He was as angry with her as she with him. Nothing had been settled and yet everything made sense. Their love had always bordered on chaos. How could their passion be any different?

"Palo."

A single whisper of the man's name who had held her hand as Anakin watched from afar with murder dancing in his eyes. He immediately reached around Padmé's slim waist and hoisted her high on his hips against the wall. Her legs instinctively wrapped around his waist as he angled her until the weeping head of his shaft pressed into her ripe entrance and then impaled her tender flesh.

Glistening wetness clouded Padmé's eyes as they adjusted to the darkness as surely as her body welcomed the heated column of throbbing flesh inch by glorious inch until she was so full of him she felt him in the back of her throat. A wild cry of ecstasy was swallowed by his hard kiss. His hands filled with the firm flesh of her curvaceous backside, anchored there to lift her higher while driving a deep, slow rhythm into her.

Padmé's shamelessly loud grunts accompanied her sharp nails raking his back as the methodical rise-and-fall pace quickened until he was pounding into her so hard her face contorted into a mask of sheer lust.

Anakin's hard thrusts jerked her whole body upwards. His teeth tore open the front of her dress, exposing a pebbled brown nipple which his mouth captured and then sucked furiously. The wicked aroma of their intensity wafted around them while he tenderly nursed her other nipple, nibbling the tip before forcibly taking her mouth again. Harder... he fucked her harder until...

Padmé screamed.

One long, erupting, blood curdling scream that she did not try to suppress for privacies sake, nor her usual modest stature, No, she screamed because he fucked her so hard and deep her orgasm relentlessly tore through her in wave after wave of reckless abandon. Writhing all around him, her moist passage clenched uncontrollably, her head thrown back, eyes shut as she wailed with passion.

Yes... she was most definitely alive.

With his chest pounding, Anakin paused. He softly kissed her neck, just over her pulse, never mind how hard he felt surrounded by her tight, slick channel. Her thick, chestnut tresses hung loosely around her flushed face. She gently bit her lips and then opened her smoky-brown eyes to him. Pressed face to face, the heat of her breath fanned his lips.

The solid feel of him throbbing, buried so deep her blood boiled beneath her skin. Subtle aftershocks rippled through her body. She felt small in his strong arms, as if he possessed limitless strength. He had turned her body inside out and yet still wore a jealous scowl she fell in love with all over again.

The emotions they shared were so powerful they just couldn't say a word to each other. The symphony's ebb and flow surged powerfully as they began to move as one again.

Padmé crossed her legs tighter around Anakin's waist as she was flung up against the wall time and time again. Her sex clenched inward as the friction caused a delicious pulsing over her clit. His animalistic groaning left her liquid soft to his fury. She clung to him for dear life, because his life was so dear to her. Oh what he did to her behind closed doors... No man, anywhere, ever compared to him.

Her lips attacked his, biting as the pinprick sensations echoed her rising desire. The short, swift thrusts slamming her up into the wall was an instrument of their lustful symphony, the hot slapping noise created a desperate erotic music in honor of their aggression.

Lost in his angel, the inside of her thighs gleamed with sweat as she pulsed and trembled all around him. Her thrilling heat left him nearly in tears every time he drove so deeply none of him existed outside of her. His every desire came with the name "Padmé" attached to it. She was the very definition of erotic, a knowledge he greedily held onto as his and his alone.

Anakin knew for certain that the day would come when no enemy in all the galaxy would be able to defeat him in battle, and as surely he also knew he would never be able to resist Padmé. He simply, quietly, did not desire other women. All that he had ever wanted and more, he had in her. This was the only place he called home, inside her... loving her with his very being.

Her back arched tautly, her lower regions straining to keep up with the frantic, unbridled passion with which he claimed her. She was chanting and bucking furiously, swallowing his hot breath into her mouth while urging him on with grinding hips down to meet the heady impact of his hard manhood. She savored every inch of him as he belonged to her as surely as she belonged to him.

"He touched your hand."

Husky words spoken in a low tone. Padmé responded to his increasing urgency by whispering, "You own my heart."

"Mine," was growled into her neck as he swelled inside her, drawing closer to that blessed end. Her body squeezed tight around him, the rapture alone worth dying for. "You're mine."

As the searing heat flashes cascaded throughout Padmé's soul, she splintered into a million pieces, crying out "Always," as her raging orgasm, so mind-alteringly satisfying her nails tore skin on the back of his neck. Her legs shook, the muscles painfully contracting as she did around him.

When she validated his ownership, Anakin roared into the crook of her neck, his climax a series of cataclysmic ejaculations inside her. One after an another, each with a lifting lunge until at long last there was peace.

As if applauding their efforts, the entire opera house roared its loud approval. Their rapidly beating hearts sounded a primal war drum that eased into a peaceful throb against their chests. Tender, sweeter kisses gently drifted them back to each other.

Anakin supported Padmé's light frame high on the wall while his mouth gently plundered her soft, kiss-swollen lips. Her torn dress, ripped in two places was evidence of his absolute need for her. She held him inside her, buried so deep, surrounded by the fiery heat of her love.

Sticky moisture massaged beneath her fingertips over the back of his neck, tracing the twin lines of slightly torn flesh. He had taken her to a dimension of such cataclysmic passion she drew blood, marking his skin by the sharpness of her nails. Softer, but no less thick inside her, he gently lifted... pulling free of her tender embrace, and then set her down on wobbly legs. His arms held her steady before closing around her middle, clutching her tightly to his chest.

With their eyes shut in the dark, they held on to each other, basking in the pure elation of being together again. They silently shared their private thoughts their Force-enabled bond.

'I have missed you Padmé... My Ani... I don't know how much more of this I can take... Being separated from you is nearly unbearable... I cannot sleep... I know no peace without you by my side... The fighting seems endless... I worry about you every second of every day... I long to never leave you again... Force be praised you're home again... My angel... My beloved... I love you more than my life... I am complete when I am in your arms...'

With the taste of her still on his lips, Anakin reluctantly released her from his arms and backed away. The exhilaration of their connection slowly faded as Padmé caught her breath against the wall, her palms flat on the cool surface. Her eyes remained shut. Her belly quivered aftershocks of what her husband had done to her. The rustling of clothes sounded nearby. He dressed, all the while watching her closely.

Padmé knew this because she could always feel his hungry gaze upon her.

Her dark lashes lifted, opening her line of vision to Anakin standing before her in dark clothing, sans his Jedi robe which she noticed lay over the booth chair. His strong arms crossed his chest, regarding her in a hidden way, as his face was shadowed from her sight. Their lovemaking burned... and yet the longer he stood there the angrier she seemed to become.

Their deliriously erotic coupling aside, she had many questions she felt she wouldn't like the answers to any of them. She tore her focus from his sensuous mouth as her tone of voice bit at him. "I suppose I don't rank high enough to be told you're back on Coruscant?"

Suppressing the urge to laugh, Anakin knew the afterglow wouldn't last forever. Her annoyance over his actions weren't unexpected. "It's nice to see you again Mrs. Skywalker."

In sharp contrast to the beautiful music playing around them, Padmé shot Anakin a furious look when it suddenly dawned on her what must have happened earlier. "Don't you dare make light of this," she warned him. "You... you know what happened to me a short time ago, don't you? You caused that, didn't you?"

Pretending he had no clue what she was talking about wasn't the way to deal with an angry Padmé. Anakin had learned that much at the very least. His hands lifted in a show of remorseful guilt. "I," he paused behind a small grin, "Sought to remind you of how good we are together." The regal column of her throat swallowed hard. Yes, she remembered. He continued, "I only recalled sensations I had made you feel before. Nothing was fabricated."

"Why would you humiliate me like that?"

"I would never humiliate you. Not ever. My only intentions were to... bother you a little," he confessed upon stepping forward, once again invading her personal space. "I 'felt' you," he confided so softly, as if they were in the company of others who might hear. When she turned her face away he gently cupped her cheek, forcing her to face him. "You loved it."

Damn him! The faint blush sweeping Padmé's fair skin validated his claims. The truth of his statement came with no less truth that he had taken advantage of her, at least in her eyes. "I don't like it when you manipulate me, Anakin. I don't like games." He towered above her, his dangerously male scent flooding her senses anew. His superior height was one of his greatest weapons against her resolve. She hated and secretly loved the way he could make her feel so small sometimes. "Your actions tonight showed a complete lack of respect for me."

"A lack of respect?" Anakin snapped back, unable to restrain his mounting anger any longer. "I just spent the last nine straight hours in hyperspace with only R2's delightful chirping conversation to entertain me so that I could come home to you tonight. Thank you so much for your hospitality, my lady."

Padmé fought off the urge to giggle because he snarled at her. Her heart pounded just that much faster. His anger squeezed something warm within her. Something innately feminine. She had provoked him yet again. She suddenly realized she'd been holding her breath. "What you did to me was against my will."

"Hardly," he smirked in her face, as defiant as she was. "I wonder how many women across the galaxy would kill to have a man able to generate such a 'climatic' response from his woman without even being in the same room as her?"

Despite being born without a violent nature, Padmé felt the compulsion to slap the arrogance off his handsome face. "Perhaps one of those women would be more to your liking then? As for me, I'd prefer the company of another when such 'climatic responses occur."

Lost in the mood to tempt fate, Padmé dared to add, "Thankfully, I wasn't alone tonight."

"Palo," Anakin seethed through clenched teeth as jealousy ricocheted through him. He'd been gone for weeks and she might of... No, she wouldn't. Not ever!

"It's nothing more than a chance meeting with an old friend. I invited him to accompany me here tonight. I was sick of being alone." Never mind she was probably risking Palo life by toying with Anakin like this, she watched his jaw clench hard as a tense scowl replaced the mischievous expression he wore just a moment ago. Her eyes darted to the fingers on his right hand as they traced over the torn front of her dress and the dusty smudges that ruined the exotic fabric.

"I'm sorry about the dress."

"I don't care about the..." To her right something moved in the shadows. From the corner of her eye she saw Anakin's attention focused in that direction. One of her full-length dress bags hovered over to them. He plucked it from mid-air and unzipped it. She peered inside.

"I 'acquired' this for you a month ago. Something about this dress whispered to me in your voice."

Padmé reached her hand out and ran her fingers over the soft, exotic Rynarian fabric of the dark evening gown he chose. The deep, plunging neckline and criss-cross back straps were as wickedly revealing as anything she had ever worn before. It even eclipsed the risqué dress she wore tonight. The fitted silhouette flowed into a full floor-length skirt, erotic design as regal as it screamed vixen.

The first, immediate thought that came to her mind was this seemed like the kind of gown a female Sith would use to seduce her prey. Only a viral, inhibitionless woman could wear this. Behind the veil of her dark lashes she reveled in her husband's wish to see her in something so... erotic.

Anakin perceived her deep appreciation for the dress, though he knew she wasn't done with him just yet. He had much to answer for. She whipped the dress from his hands and disappeared around the corner. He heard a strip of the dress she wore tonight torn away, more than likely used for a personal matter.

"How did you know I would be here tonight? The guest lists weren't released to the HoloNet until just before the symphony began."

The last thing Anakin wanted to do was answer that question. It would only lead to the same old argument they've had time and time again. Then again, lying to her wasn't an option either. "Isn't it enough that I'm here?"

Padmé entered from of the shadows, her dark, flowing evening gown clinging to her slim figure like a second skin. She reminded Anakin of something rare and exotic. A woman to be feared, admired, and loved forever. His intense scrutiny left him breathless. She would have enjoyed it immensely if certain things weren't made so clear. "Palpatine told you I would be here, didn't he?"

Whatever tender intimacy left in the booth evaporated. "After I captured that arms dealer to the Separatists the Chancellor requested that I be granted four days leave. The Jedi Council allowed this. He is the reason I'm here with you now."

"He never mentioned a thing to me tonight," Padmé told him. "He never pulled me aside to tell me you had been granted leave time. It seems he chooses what I should and should not know. What's worse is that you go along with it."

His hopes of avoiding this tired argument died. "Force-forbid you actually be happy that I am with you in spite of how it happened."

"I have expressed my concerns many times over your friendship with Chancellor Palpatine. Yet again you let him into our personal lives. Isn't it enough that he knows we are married? Every time he does you a favor he gains more of your trust."

"Few people truly trust me, Padmé. You have no idea what that is like."

"I trust you most of all. But I do not trust him."

Their eternal impasse... Anakin gave a frustrated sigh while Padmé looked away. "I just wanted to come home to you," he confessed all that truly mattered. "I don't care about Palpatine, nor do I favor his council over yours. My only thoughts about any of this are that just before I departed the last time we exchanged very harsh words and left things on a bad note." Somber eyes fell upon her. "I haven't seen you in seven whole weeks, Padmé. I've missed you terribly."

Her beloved Ani... Padmé found that she could not find her voice as the sincerity of his words spoke directly to her heart. The knowledge that she had disappointed him yet again brought tears her eyes. In a time of war where her precious husband is a soldier she knew his every return home should be exalted. Instead, he returned to her anger and annoyance over a friendship he truly valued. Not a day went by in her life that she fell asleep at night or woke up in the morning and wondered where she ranked in his life.

How often has she worried that she wasn't his top priority? Never. Her duty as a public servant mattered to her, but did not mean more than her marriage. The sad, real question here was did he know that?

Possibly was the answer that nearly broke Padmé's heart.

Anakin lived to love her and had told her so on many occasions. The Jedi Order employed the Chosen One, but he belonged to Padmé. That ownership was definitive and final.

"My love," Padmé tenderly called out to him, closing the distance between them until she held his face in her hands. What if he had been killed during their time apart? What if he died without the knowledge that her every hope and dream involved him? These weren't easy times they lived in. They were complicated, unfair, and often brutal. Nonetheless, their love had not only survived, it thrived.

With the caring touch of a lover she softly caressed his face and then affectionately brushed her fingers through his hair. "Forgive me?" she asked him. "We may never agree on all things, but please know that for the rest of our lives I love and cherish you above all else. Above anyone, any title, and any duty."

"Angel," he whispered before claiming her lips once more, drowning in her irresistible allure. When they parted his arms held her tight to his chest, her head tucked underneath his chin. He inhaled the scent of her perfume and sighed as peace filled his soul once more. "I'm sorry I didn't contact you as soon as I was granted my leave. I only wanted to surprise you. I was so excited to see you again that I didn't think."

"Your personality is set to react, but that is one of the many reasons I love you so much. Your spontaneous side is exciting," Padmé beamed at him a magnificent smile. One he returned in kind. Her eyes surveyed all of him, looking for anything out of the ordinary. "How are you feeling?"

That was her thinly veiled attempt to discover what he never talked to her about. The details of the war he saw each day, horrifying and violent. It wasn't that he ever thought she wouldn't understand or couldn't take the truth. He only sought to protect her from what he never wanted her near. "I have no new wounds or scars save those with me when I leave your side."

Ever the poetic wordsmith, Padmé lifted upon her tippy toes to kiss him again. Sans her shoes she left in the corner, she really had to lean in. She saw him smiling because of it. "I am truly sorry for my behavior."

"So am I."

"Trust me when I tell you that I am overjoyed you are here."

Anakin flashed a deceptive grin down at her. "What of Palo?"

"Don't kill him?" she asked delightfully amused. His expression turned from slightly whimsical to shocked. Of course she didn't mean it. But she did like surprising him from time to time. "He's boring and a bit of a letch..."

Anakin's features tightened, as did his fists. "Did he try something?"

"Hardly more than touching my hand. I find him mildly amusing in that he lacks any personality at all. He is not as charming as one of your boots, Ani." There it was... his precious laughter. "I needed to get out of our apartment. It felt like the walls were closing in around me."

"I saw that ridiculous HoloNet news report on you." When she shyly ducked her head he tipped her chin with a finger. "You are the most incredible, beautiful, erotic woman in all the galaxy. I struggle to restrain my utter hunger for you all the time, and you know this. Whenever we are alone I want you."

Her eyes shut to the sexy timber of his voice in her ear, now gently nibbling her neck, his tongue moist to the touch. How could a HoloNet news reporter get to her when Anakin loved her so dearly? How could their false assumptions cause her to doubt herself in any way when her Ani would turn down mastery in the Jedi Order if she asked him to?

Anakin's legend continued to grow. The HoloNet called him "The man without fear." The Chosen One who fights for the Republic during the war. Who's amazing adventures have captivated a galaxy. He is revered by children, respected and feared by men, and desired by women who would do anything to be with him.

And yet the conservative, quiet, utterly predictable Padmé Amidala did not pursue him at all. He vehemently pursued her and won her heart. He longed for her touch alone. He married her and gave her his last name. All because she was so worthy, amazing, and sexy he couldn't live without her.

"Only you," Anakin whispered over Padmé's lips before kissing her again. "Always," he reminded her, the very beat of his heart applauded. "If they could see you through my eyes..."

"No, I wouldn't want that," she spoke softly with a smile. "You know me best. You fulfill me. I am all that I need or want to be in your eyes."

They kissed as the lovely music harmonized thorough the small booth, adding a beautifully romantic mood.

"Come here," Anakin said to her, gently tugging her hands around the booths plush lounge chairs. He sat down in the one closest to the railing, and then lifted his long legs on the balcony. Padmé slipped into his lap, cuddling her body into his with her much shorter legs resting over his longer ones.

Passionate kisses in the dark were serenaded by an amazing symphony. Dramatically beautiful voices sang amidst the orchestra's performance as they sought very outer edges of dynamics and expression.

Anakin embraced his wife, his lips brushing softly over her forehead. Her eyes shut moments ago as she relaxed in his protective arms. He felt her breathing slow to a crawl and then smiled when he realized that she had fallen asleep. His angel, curled in his lap with her head resting against his chest had fallen asleep in the cozy dark of this opera booth.

This is how he survives the war. This is why no enemy will ever conquer him in battle. This validates his every scar, his darkest thoughts, and his frustrations with the things that he cannot change.

Padmé's love breathed life in him.

The symphony went on for a long while, seemingly with no end in sight. Anakin couldn't have cared less. His angel was safe in his arms, and that was all that mattered to him.


35 Minutes later


Clear blue eyes adjusted to the dimming lights as the symphony's third act began.

Anakin nuzzled the softly-scented curls of Padmé's long brown hair, his right hand soothing a gentle massage over her lower back as she slept peacefully in his arms. The precious rise and fall of her chest against his breathed a resurgence of a will to survive the brutal war that sought to cripple his spirit. His one true fear wasn't the loss of his own life but of being torn from hers. Now that he was home again the real purpose of his existence became perfectly clear once more.

To protect, cherish, and love Padmé eclipsed the universe itself. There was no Chosen One in reality. There was only the one who she chose. That it was him she wanted to spend her life with remained the greatest gift he had ever been given.

The Meza-absorbing fabric lounge chair conformed in size and length to provide a most comfortable seating arrangement. Anakin was grateful for the extra space afforded to his long legs. He used the Force not long after Padmé had fallen asleep to drape his Jedi robe over her. She hadn't made a sound in the longest time, and that pleased him a great deal. For her to have found such warmth and security in his arms was a balm to his troubled soul.

The Ithorian singer's haunted vocals weren't what he normally enjoyed listening to, though he found favor in their graceful harmonies. He allowed himself a moment of blissful relaxation amidst the daily horrors he experienced on the front lines of the war. Pushing all else aside, Padmé's love filled his heart once more.

Speaking of Mrs. Skywalker, she made a little noise against his shoulder and then cuddled closer to his neck. He bent down to her ear and whispered, "Sleep, Angel. Let me take care of you."

Anakin's loving words were a blessing to Padmé's soul, and yet when she yawned herself awake she realized they weren't in their bed, but in an empty Galaxies Opera House V.I.P booth. The night's events suddenly came back to her in a rush of erotic images. "My goodness!" she nearly shouted. Her drowsy eyes lifted to find her husband's smile. "How long have I been asleep?"

"Not long," he kissed her temple once. "You seemed like you needed the rest."

Padmé averted her somber gaze from his notice. "I don't sleep well anymore."

His words to Obi-Wan once upon a time. He hated ever hearing them from his beloved. The war had taken its toll on everyone, albeit in different ways. "The third act just began. Rest. I'll wake you when it's over."

He would and she knew that, but the risk involved in them staying here any longer grew by the second. She leaned over his lips to press a soft kiss and then rose from his lap, stretching her arms. "Let's go home, my love. I want to forget everything except that we are together again."

Anakin didn't have to be told twice. He practically jumped from the lounge seat and quickly slipped on his Jedi Robe. His hunger for her swelled yet again, as he stood before his wife watching the dark dress, which matched his own dark color tones, hug her body.

"Patience," Padmé warned through a blush as his eyes told her exactly what was on his mind. How had she ever considered she was less than a woman... any woman when her Anakin's desire for her knew no limit? "Palo must be looking for me."

"I doubt that. He probably thinks you are still attending to whatever business the Chancellor needed you for."

"Perhaps," she thought it over as a note of guilt struck her. "At the very least I should say something to him."

"Love, he's alright. I'm sure of it. You can send him an apology note in the morning. Right now I just want to get out of here."

Tonight wasn't a night she intended to waste another moment worrying about anything or anyone who didn't matter. Her husband was home, alive and well. She had far too much to celebrate. Padmé breathed a sigh of relief. "Lead the way."

Reaching out with the Force to insure the hallway was empty Anakin opened the door and led Padmé out into it. They moved at a brisk pace, carefully checking around each corner before progressing. "The upper west wing is being completely remodeled. That's where my starfighter is."

Padmé journeyed through the darkened halls, up two winding staircases, and through three wall-stripped rooms until they reached a massive expanse of open space with huge transparisteel beams supporting the ceiling. Up ahead was Anakin's starfighter docked by the ledge. "You do realize your ship is a one-seater, don't you?"

"Having spent nine straight hours inside it, trust me, I do." He dialed in his security code on the data pad near the glass hub cockpit. It rose swiftly. "You are going to fly my starfighter to your apartment."

"What?" Padmé half-laughed at the insane notion. "This is a Jedi Starfighter. I've never flown anything like this before. It's far more maneuverable than my ship." She rattled on much to her husband's amusement. "What if someone noticed me or recognized your ship? The ramifications could be disastrous."

Doing what he was about to do meant pushing his wife's buttons. Nonetheless, he felt tonight she wanted to be pushed. "Padmé, I understand. I should have considered your less than capable piloting skills when devising this plan, and I should have given more thought to your inability to get yourself out of sticky situations. This ship is far too fast for you to control. It was built for a man, after all."

Her white-hot anger at his insulting assumptions rose to a crescendo until she realized what he was doing. At that point all she could do was smirk and shove him aside. She climbed into the starfighter cockpit and glanced over the controls. "I can do this."

"I never doubted that you could."

Padmé confidently peered out over Galactic City. It seemed as if all of Coruscant called out to her, lit up brilliantly with active repulsor traffic and unpredictable outcomes. What began as an evening to get away from her sad life now lived as a testament to how truly alive she was. Her body hummed from passionate love making with her husband not long ago. Her dress dared any male to resist. And now she was about to pilot the single fastest, most agile starfighter in the known universe. "Ani?"

"Yes."

"Hurry home," was all she said, smiling as the glass-hub fell and secured into position.

Breathlessly, Anakin backed off from the ledge as Padmé slowly pulled away, ignited the starfighter's twin engines and zoomed off into the distance. His wife, at times, had a flair for the dramatic. He hoped she learned that from him.

"She is an extraordinary woman, isn't she?"

Palpatine's darkly mischievous voice emerged from the shadows behind Anakin. He didn't stop to consider how the Chancellor could have snuck up on him despite his Jedi senses. The mere fact that he brought him home to his Angel negated any worries at all. "That she is."

"You have no idea how well it does my old heart to see you so happy, Anakin." He calmly draped his arm over Anakin's shoulder as a father would his son. "You've earned this time off. I hope you mean to enjoy it."

Anakin walked with Palpatine through the unfinished area. "As soon as this war is over with I don't ever intend to leave her side again."

"That's quite noble of you," Palpatine admired the younger man with an understanding nod. "Love is the most powerful emotion that there is in all of the universe."

Something of a bitter scowl came over Anakin's face. "To hear the Jedi speak of it, personal love weakens the resolve and dedication of a Jedi to perform his or her sworn duty."

Palpatine reached out for Anakin's forearm, stalling him so that they might talk. His pointed gaze carried with it a stern and yet respectful meaning. "What you feel for Padmé... would you wish it for others?" Careful, calculating eyes watched over Anakin, gauging his response. He seemed to truly think over what he was asked. "The joy and fulfillment Padmé brings to your life. Do you think others would live a better life if they knew what it was like."

"Yes, of course. To give and receive love is a wondrous thing."

"So then you feel you know what others would need to make them happy?"

"I cannot say for..."

"Son, being denied that which gives your heart pleasure is being denied life itself. If it is a good and honest love you share with another than who would force you to hide it in the darkness as if it were some ugly thing?" The sensation was priceless, bold, and spoke well of the future. That sensation being Anakin Skywalker's anger and understanding. "Love, in whatever form, even if it is power alone that one covets, is nonetheless, love. To be denied your heart's desire... I can think of no greater crime."

"Nor can I," Anakin begrudgingly agreed.

With Anakin following close being, Palpatine's careful steps came to a halt as he stared down into the blustery winds of a still under construction turbo-lift chute. The shaft descended so far down toward the lower levels that the bluish glow seemed to fade into an eternal darkness. Enough had transpired tonight in the positive realm. There was no need to push any agenda more than necessary. "Palo seemed quite taken with Padmé tonight."

"He would do wise to keep his hands to himself."

The slow rising smile on Palpatine's withered face gazed over windy hole in the ground. "Perhaps we should toss him in." With a laugh he lifted his finger toward it, smiling in a way that Anakin found contagious. "I would certainly never want to be tossed down one of those dreadful things. I venture to say there would be a terrible echo of a dying man's voice."

"He would expire before he hit the bottom."

"His body would dismember upon impact." Palpatine shook his head and then focused his eyes to Anakin. "From what I know of him he has no family, nor any attachments. He would hardly be missed."

"Are you suggesting I toss him down this shaft?" Anakin asked in a tone filled with mirth. Palpatine held a serious stare for a moment longer and then walked off.

"Of course not," Palpatine announced over his shoulder. "But I do think he needs to be taught a lesson."


Palo couldn't move, nor had he access to the ability to speak.

Seated in his chair overlooking the grand climax of the symphony, just a few moments ago he experienced the strangest sensation he had ever felt before. It was as if his body simply stopped listening to him. His world became still and quiet. Fear... gut wrenching fear ran reckless in his stomach as a faint voice began speaking to him. One he couldn't recognize, and yet knew he had better heed if he valued his life.

'You will quietly exit the Galaxies Opera House out of the southwest 76th floor landing bay. An air taxi will escort you back to your hotel. When you arrive you will personally send a note to Bez Cessel. Inform the HoloNet news reporter that you regretfully had to leave the symphony early but that you have a very good time catching up with your old friend, the esteemed Senator Padmé Amidala. With your business on Coruscant concluded, you will leave immediately and never attempt to contact the Senator again. If even one negative word is spoken about her in the press you will learn the true meaning of suffering. Do not take this threat lightly. I am the reason you cannot move or speak. I could make your life a hundred times worse, and you would never even see my face once to know who had done this to you. I shall allow you to nod your head once if you understand. If you nod I shall take that as a sign you understand what is expected of you. That will conclude this meeting. If you do as you are told there won't ever be another.'

'Do you understand?'

Palo's breath choked from his lungs when his physical body was given back to him. He nodded vehemently and as soon as his legs began working he rose from his chair and ran from the opera booth.

He literally ran for his very life.


Officially: Senator Padmé Amidala's apartment Unofficially: Anakin and Padmé Skywalker's apartment The early morning Located in the Republic Plaza Galactic City, Coruscant

Shades of warm light fell upon Anakin's bare chest through the parted Vylore blinds in their bedroom. Rousing from a fitful sleep, his mind trickled toward a blissful awakening as the tender comforts of home flooded his senses. He lay sprawled on his back, his breathing slowed to a crawl as the joy... the utter joy of being reunited with his angel swept his spirit into a whirlwind of sensation.

He smiled behind closed eyes, long limbs stretching as his mind began to clear of its early morning fog. Padmé was not by his side, seeing as how he currently occupied the center of the bed all by himself. He felt entirely too good to do anything, even as simple as reaching out through the Force to discover her location. His heart beat just a little faster while imagining her lithe, utterly mouthwatering form in the fresher. The sensuous vision of water droplets cascading down the flawless fair skin of her supple feminine curves saw an arousal build furiously within him. The mere thought of her could drive his body into a frenzy of need.

Without moving a muscle, Anakin sought her out. The wonderful scent of his beloved angel clung to the bed sheets, catching his notice first. He felt liquid free, as if in a form of heaven just being near her again. He wanted her... could practically feel her... could sense her desire for him as if...

Jiliast-Prime's seven burning stars were known as natural wonders of the universe, and yet in this very moment they woefully paled in comparison to the sight of the covers below his waist slowly rising and falling over his lap. As if that image alone, now burned into his subconscious forever wasn't enough, the absolutely decadent feel of soft lips wrapped around his cock overtook him in a blazing rush of heart-stopping sensation, her small fist stroking the base robbed him of any coherent thought he had left. "Oh Padmé..."

Draped beneath the covers, the heady moan that escaped the very pit of her husband's throat saw Padmé stop for a moment as she realized he was finally awake. His utter weakness to her wicked skills empowered her. His every labored breath serenaded her. His entire body shook while her tongue methodically lashed up his considerable length and then back down to the base where her fingers relinquished him and then rose once more until her lips pursed around the swollen head. She captured him again in the heated confines of her mouth and began sucking hard.

Anakin's fists clutched the sheets, his neck arched, eyes focused on the hypnotic rhythm of the covers rising and falling over him. Her appetite was a shock to his system. She was as aggressive as she'd ever acted before, taking him time and time again until his toes curled. The lush feel of her moist tongue dragging up and down his shaft each time she descended upon him... so exquisitely he gave pause to the notion that perhaps she was the Sith Lord the Jedi were looking for. "Angel, you didn't have to... ahhh, that feels so good."

"For you," was all that she whimpered before inhaling him once more, the soft skin, wrapped around what felt like transparisteel, throbbed against her tongue and the roof of her mouth. She loved being able to provoke such pleasure in him. To hear the erotic sounds he made were music to her ears that last night's symphony couldn't hope to match. She sucked harder on just the head while stroking the base. Her actions were rewarded when his back arched high off the bed.

"Padmé!"

His sinfully tortured voice and gentle touch with his hands to warn her were appreciated but ignored as she sought to ravish her husband until he lay helpless before her. She began bobbing her head faster while counter-twisting her wrist until the sudden burst of wet heat filled her mouth as his strangled cries of ecstasy filled her ear drums. She swallowed greedily, draining him with little regard for the flavor as the sensation and thrill that she had so completely tore the Chosen One apart.

Her gasping breaths matched his own, lightly muted by the covers over her head. Padmé smiled widely, her face flushed a crimson red as she tenderly kissed her way up Anakin's strong thighs, his flat, chiseled stomach, and then over the rapid drum-beat of his heart. Her soft lips hovered above the rapidly pulsing organ. She pressed a kiss there, and then looked up into her husband's gorgeous blue eyes. "I was inspired."

Anakin quickly pulled her to him and kissed her with a desperate hunger and no small amount of gratitude. "May you continue to be inspired for all the days of your life."

Finally she had something to laugh about early in the morning. "I saw a special on the HoloNet late one night that talked about ways to drive your lover mad with desire. One of the techniques involved waking him in a..." she appeared just this side of shy, "Particular way."

"You're amazing, Padmé." Awe and admiration were written all over his face. His heart and soul soared with pride over this woman. "You were nothing less than spectacular." She could barely look at him. Her embarrassed smile only added to her charm. That and her sheer sleeping attire. "I shall worship you for the rest of my life."

"A simple thank you would suffice," she laughed with him, and then laid her head to rest upon his chest. His arms closed around her once more, shutting out the rest of the galaxy and all its problems. There was only the faint noise of Coruscant's busy morning skytraffic with them.

While tracing a lone finger across his shoulder, Padmé was pleased to report, "As soon as I arrived back here last night I cleared my schedule for today."

Anakin couldn't have been told any better news than that. "Whatever will we do all day long?" he just had to ask with a Sith of a charm to his voice.

"I'm sure we will find many fun ways to amuse ourselves," she nuzzled against his bare chest, and then rose on her elbows to take a good look at him. Each time he returned to her he looked older and more dangerous than when he left. Even the high burn scar above his eye only added to his appeal. "I want to take a long, hot bath with you and I want to wash your hair."

"My hair?" She nodded. "Why?"

"When was the last time you washed it?" Anakin seemed to try his best and remember the last time. That told Padmé all that she wanted to know. "You'll enjoy the bath, my love. I promise."

Anakin had no doubt about that. "How did you sleep?"

Padmé practically purred a kiss onto his lips. "I had the best night's sleep I've had in several weeks." It coincided with when he last left and was meant too. He understood the sentiment. "How did you sleep?"

"Well, after my sex-crazed wife..."

Her right brow rose in defiance. "Sex-crazed wife?"

"Don't interrupt," Anakin insisted. She had the nerve to pout at him, which was so unlike her and yet so absolutely perfect. "Like I was saying, when my sex-crazed and gorgeous beyond words wife 'physically' assaulted me upon walking through the door I was forced to perform my husbandly duties for hours."

He had some nerve... and every right to brag. "It was hardly against your will."

"You bit my neck."

"I think I made it up to you this morning."

Anakin just had to kiss that little smile of hers. "Nonetheless, after engaging in vigorous naked 'aggressive negotiations' with my wife I slept very well."

Nothing compared to being with him again. His soothing presence fixed all the wrongs in her world. Padmé felt his hands roaming over her lower back, stroking her skin with a lover's touch, adoring her the whole time. "I didn't get a chance to tell you last night that when I left the Galaxies Opera House I buzzed by the Jedi Temple and skimmed the dome of the Galactic Senate Hall with your starfighter." His expression upon hearing of her mischief was wondrous. "I flew right past the Jedi Council Towers."

"That was quite daring and unpredictable, my love."

"Then I was doing it right."

Anakin knew that she needed last night even more than he did, and he needed it badly. To see her happy again was all that mattered and... and it seemed that the surprisingly forward behavior of his angel continued. "Whatever are you doing?"

When Padmé's hand slipped between them mid-sentence and curled around him she began a gentle stroking rhythm that saw his... "spirits" rise once more. The dark, heady look in his eyes was solely because of her. She felt so alive. "Is that your light saber, or are you just happy to see me?"

Playful, teasing, and in a far better mood than he'd seen her in months. Anakin's heart filled to overflowing with love for her. "I am always happy to see you. And I do mean always."

Padmé sat astride his thighs while pulling off her gown. She seductively draped herself over him, bending down to his lips. "I hear they call you the Chosen One?"

"Chosen by you is all that matters."

She graced him with such a pleased expression. "I also heard that you're the one they say is going to bring balance to the Force?"

"That's what the prophecy says."

"Think you could put another smile on my face before you do that?"

"I could care less about doing it at all as long as I'm with you."

Anakin hungrily claimed her lips. Their tongues slithered around his mouth, and then he quickly repositioned them so that he nestled within the space of her parted thighs. There was a euphoria in kissing her deeply. In drowning in her passion and breathing her life's breath. Where their skin touched, fire was lit. Her nails raked across his back, while his strong hands clutched the small curved globes of her backside, kneading the flesh until she groaned into the side of his neck.

"I can't get enough of you," Anakin declared his eternal inner truth, caught up in the rapture of his heart's desire. He stared longingly in her warm brown eyes, held her tender gaze, and then ground his hips in a slow circle that pressed against her sensitive, throbbing clit. Her eyes rolled back, her lips parted as a sweet intake of air evidenced her arousal. "I want you every second of every day."

"Ani," was all that she could utter. His name caressed the galaxy from her lips, spoken in awe and reverence. The way he suckled her neck, gently biting her pulse point until the hot tingles left her desperate to be filled now. She couldn't wait another moment. "I need you inside me... please, Ani. Now."

One slow thrust forward sealed their hips together. Anakin surged deeply, the slick sheath of her body closing snug around him, welcoming him home. The feel of her was such an irresistible aphrodisiac his hips pumped faster, his need overwhelming him as the bed shook with each thunderous impact.

Padmé's steady, panting moans of "Ohhh" and "Ahhh" filled the bedroom with carnal intent. The wild, untamed side of her husband thrilled her. He pounded her small frame into the bed as possessively as he ever had before while she held on for dear life, her heels locked over the small of his sweaty back, her fingers combing through his long hair as he plundered her gloriously. He smelled so good... the brush of his skin against hers left her wanting him deeper... So thick and hard, as if she'd willed him to the farthest reach of his sanity, and then forced him over the edge of control until he was simply a warrior mating with his conquest.

A short time later Padmé cried out, giving herself over to him as the snapping recoil of their slapping flesh and the heated column of him lunging harder inside her wrenched a fiery climax so utterly satisfying from the depths of her soul she shamelessly screamed his name while her inner muscles squeezed long and hard around him.

Anakin stared at her lovely, flushed face. Her parted, kiss-swollen lips. He reveled in the sheer deafening volume of her release. He watched every second of her orgasm play itself out over her face, twisting her expressions so deliciously he couldn't ever remember seeing anything more wonderful in all his life.

His lips crashed down onto hers as he began a slow and thorough exploration of her mouth. She writhed beneath him. His Padmé was such an incredible woman. He could not imagine life without her because there simply wouldn't be a life worth living. So he sought to enjoy the moment, taking his time to make love to her with less desperation and more tenderness this time around.

They kissed to make up for every kiss denied them due to the painfully frustrating lives they are forced to lead in private, hidden away from everyone who knew them. They made love with even more passion to spite every night they were forced to spend apart.

Padmé welcomed the break from the rougher side of their love making, now relishing his gentle side while he moved inside her. "I love you... oh, I love you so much, Ani."

Lowering his head, Anakin rested his forehead against hers, their gazes locked while making love. "I love you more than anything else in the galaxy," he whispered against her lips. They held on tight, moving as one, rebuilding what was broken between them until it was more powerful than it had ever been before.

Living... breathing... loving... Anakin and Padmé made love for the longest time without a care in the universe.


The End