Disclaimer: I do not own Star Wars, so there.

This is a piece I wrote in the middle of school, inspired by a fellow Star Wars fan, set after Padmé's death.

Our group was a small one. We had shrunken in number quite recently, just as the prestigious Jedi had been doing of late. The missing member was a key one-- Padmé Amidala of Naboo. Her death had dealt a strong blow to our cause, but we faltered in neither our steps toward rebellion nor our charade as hard-working members of the Galactic Empire; we had plans to orchestrate and interference to run.

I stepped inside our meeting place bearing a heavy heart. Mon Mothma, our more-or-less leader, had charged me with rallying the group; with reeling them back into our cause. I lost sleep the previous night over what I would say to them. Laying Padmé to rest had not been easy, and in the midst of grieving over her loss, I had to tell a group of already troubled people that all was well—that we must move on.

That morning it had finally come to me, the way to make the best point to my comrades. I drew my holdout blaster from my hidden sleeve holster and held it up as I strode into the room. Wordlessly, I tossed it onto the table before them. "My friends, few know where any given man's holdout gun can be found." I came to a stop in front of the table onto which I'd thrown my blaster. "Now you know mine's hiding place."

"What's this all about, Bail?" inquired Fang Zar.

I smiled warily. "A smaller list of people can be trusted with one's holdout blaster's position." I paused to glance around the room at those who had shown up. They were risking their lives by just being at this meeting for an organization whose influence had yet to be seen in our galaxy.

That's what it was, I thought: our galaxy. Not His Excellency's galaxy or the galaxy of the Galactic Empire; our galaxy. Wasn't that same Galactic Empire supposed to make us feel safe? I wasn't so reassured, and I doubted if any of those present were any more reassured by it than I. "If I had such a list, all of you would be on it." I looked to Mon Mothma, who smiled and gave the smallest nod of encouragement.

"Today, we've come to a crossroads. One of our number has been taken by the madness that was begun by our so-called Emperor. Palpatine has corrupted a perfectly good and powerful Jedi for his own agenda, and because of this Padmé Amidala lies dead. Buried." I paused again. " Buried by a dark time that threatens to wipe away all that we've worked toward and, up till this very moment, controlled. That control has been taken from us, my friends, and because of it the futures of our children will suffer." At least four people in the room nodded; all four had children. Good; I was getting somewhere. "Not only their futures but those of their children, and their children's children after them, will suffer unless we act.

"We must take the time to mourn Padmé, for if we didn't we would be as heartless as this new Empire." How true were those words? I had watched the murder of a mere Padawan at the Jedi Temple days earlier. The child had been outnumbered tenfold by heavily armed clone troopers. "Her loss shows that even the innocent are not safe from oppression.

"Padmé said to me once, 'So this is how liberty dies: with thunderous applause.' But we must not let liberty die!" Once more, I made eye contact with several people in the room. "We must stage the final scene. We must be triumphant when the curtain drops on the stage of the Galactic Empire for the final time. Whether it be twenty seconds, minutes, days, or years from this very moment, we must not permit this Empire to go on. We must strike them with all our might at the most crucial second, or else the time we've spent will have been for nothing. But above all, we must do it for those we've lost along the way."

Amidst the calls of 'Hear, hear!' and 'For the Republic!', I felt that Padmé would have been proud. I would not have her daughter's future seem so bleak. I could not fail her.

We could not fail her.

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