Once upon a time…

The 7th Hymn of Tiresias,

Epilogue

***

8 years later, at the new Jedi Training center on Naboo…

"Auryn! You turdshined son of a rancor! If you ever touch my data pad again, I'll stuff you into the fresher, head first! And I won't stop until you can tell me what uncle Kay ate for dinner last week!"

"It was Cousin Jacen's idea, Pi!"

Luke groaned and covered his head with a pillow. Next to him, Aubé still slept soundly, oblivious to the shouts emanating from the other room. You would sleep through a planet-wide quake, my dear, he thought as he reluctantly pulled on his sleep pants. All the Jedi training in the galaxy couldn't prepare a man for dealing with a teenage daughter…

Luke had barely pulled the trousers over his hips when the blond, brown eyed missile that was his 7 year old son flew into his arms. "Pay-pa!" he cried. "Pi has been writing gushy love letters instead of doing her lessons again!"

Holding his son close to his heart, Luke nodded in understanding. "Let's go talk to your sister out on the balcony, Auryn," he said softly. "Leave your Ma-mere to sleep."

"She's not sleeping, Pay-pa," Auryn corrected him, whispering in his father's ear. "She's only pretending because Pi will listen to you!"

Luke pursed his lips, then shook his head. "Why don't you go see if first meal is ready, then – and tell Jacen that if he has time to splice into his cousin's data pad, he has time to for extra saber practice. I expect to see some improvement by mid-day. I'll go talk to your sister."

"Yes, Pay-pa!" Auryn cried gleefully, dashing through the narrow passageways of the old monastery.

"What time is it?" came a sleepy mumble from the heap of bedclothes behind him. "Luke, it's barely first light…"

"It's later than you think, Bé," Luke replied good naturedly. "Han and Leia are coming after first meal as a stop over before going on to Hapes..."

"Bit of a detour isn't it? Coruscant to Hapes, via Naboo?"

Luke grabbed a handful of covers, pleased to find that he was fast enough to catch her foot as well, eliciting a squeal and a flurry of kicking feet. He continued, completely
non-plussed, "Well, if you hadn't seen your eldest in five months, wouldn't you?"

The struggling stopped with a heavy sigh. "Speaking of eldest…"

"I'm going right now," Luke finished with a grin. "But I'll be back for you later…"

He heard the voices long before he actually reached the balcony, and paused. Whoever Pem was speaking to was doing his very best not to be overheard – or even noticed –
but his Force signature sang in the air, dancing merrily with Pem's.

With great care, Luke looked around the corner of the balustrade, but his caution was for naught, for neither Pemberian nor her young suitor was aware of anything but each other.

Luke had seen the young man before; he was from the village to the east. A native of Naboo, his parents had declined the offer of the Jedi to train their son, despite his evident sensitivity to the Force. And now here he was, hanging off the ledge of the balcony, eyes closed and leaning in for a kiss.

A kiss from Luke's 15 year old daughter…

Stepping into full view, Luke indelicately cleared his throat. With a gasp, Pemberian wheeled around, pulling her dressing gown closed over her rather ample chest while her young man struggled for purchase on the balustrade.

"Pay-pa!" Pem cried, flushing to the roots of her curly brown hair. "I – I – Tobaian was… he was…"

"Coming to join us for first meal, I presume," Luke finished for her dryly as the young man scrabbled over the balcony.

Although Luke's expression was stern, his eyes danced with amusement. It was apparent through the Force that he was utterly besotted with Pem, and she with him, even enough to risk the wrath of a Jedi Master.

Tobaian was dressed in a brown rough jerkin and leggings. His dark hair, long and pulled back into a woven tail, was full of brambles and burs, as if he had crept through the hedgerow to avoid detection. The boy swallowed hard, and offered a speechless, curt nod, not taking his eyes from Luke, even as Pemberian shyly took his hand.

The moment seemed to draw out forever, but in that instant, Luke could see the end results of that simple little kiss. His and Aubé's grand children, their great grand children, and possibly a hundred generations and beyond. In that instant, he was eternal.

With an imperceptible tilt of his head, Luke granted his blessing, as if to say "Next time, use the front door," and returned to the bedroom he shared with his wife.

Fin