Chapter 5

Till My Dying Day

Luke woke to a deeply sleeping Mara Jade. He smiled, she was so beautiful. He glanced at the woman he loved and basked in the warmth of their closeness. But all good things came to an end and Luke was on a mission.

Sliding out of the bed, Luke threw on his clothes from the previous evening, noticing a sticky stain on his tunic collar which he quickly realised was the shiny lipgloss Mara had been wearing last night. Quietly he left the suite and went down to the space port to get some clean clothes from the x-wing. He then rushed off to find jewellers.

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Mara woke to find the bed and herself, minus Luke. Perhaps it had all been a dream. Of course it had, Luke didn't really love her and they definitely hadn't slept together last night. She went to the intercom and ordered a pot of caf and some breakfast.

Three minutes later the door chimed and Mara went to collect her food. She was startled to find Luke standing sheepishly outside the door.

"Sorry," he said, "I just went for a walk and only just realised I don't have the code to the door."

"Its okay, Luke," she soothed as he pulled her into a hug and kissed her.

"Good morning, my love," he greeted.

"Hello, sweetheart," she returned.

They stood together, just looking into each other's eyes. "I love you," Luke whispered.

Mara nodded and kissed him. "I love you too," she said, sweetly.

A moment later their breakfast arrived and Mara and Luke snuggled together on one of the couches to eat it.

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Luke gazed at Mara over the rim of his wine glass. He sighed; the day had passed so quickly, now if only he could give it a beautiful end. He reached into his pocket and moved into a kneeling position in front of Mara. Her gaze flickered towards him, a questioning look in her emerald eyes.

Luke took a deep breath, trying to calm his anxious emotions. "Mara…" He said, softly, taking her hand, "I know this'll seem very sudden, but I've thought about it carefully." He faltered, nervously stroking her face. Come on Skywalker, he told himself. "I know we haven't known each other for very long but to me it feels like we've known each other for forever. And that's what I want to be with you forever, until I die," he brought out a small black box and opened it to reveal a delicate gold band with two diamonds either side of an emerald. Mara gasped and Luke continued, "Mara Jade, will you marry me?"

"Oh Luke," Mara breathed, "I'd love too! Yes, yes, yes, I will!" She said, kissing him on the head.

Luke breathed out a sigh of relief and placed the ring on Mara's finger. He then rose and pulled her into a tight embrace and kissed her passionately on the lips.

Once they'd finished eating and paid the bill, Luke and his brand new fiancée returned to her hotel room. The com was flickering with a small red light. Mara groaned as she activated the message and an image of the Emperor appeared.

"Mara," he began, "reply back to this message as soon as you get it and you better have a good reason for not answering." The message cut.

"Uh oh," Mara said, quietly, "I'm not supposed to leave the hotel until the Emperor says."

"Right…" Luke replied, hugging her.

"Go and get ready for bed. I'll be there soon and no eavesdropping." He nodded and moved to the bathroom.

Mara entered her Master's com frequency; she dropped to her knees and activated the holocom.

The Emperor answered, looking very angry. "Jade," he said.

"Master," she said, not looking up.

"Where have you been?" the Emperor snapped.

"I went for a quick walk and got a bite to eat," she lied.

"What is wrong with the hotel food?" he questioned.

"Nothing, Master," she replied, "it's just I'm a trained assassin and find it hard to stay inside for a long time."

He sighed, "I want you to join with Lord Vader on the Death Star by four hundred hours tomorrow, am I understood?"

"Perfectly, Master." The Emperor switched off and Mara turned to join Luke.