This fic is a sequel of such to my SW fan fic Fear. As this is the case I highly recommend you read the fore mentioned fic before reading this one. Well go on... Thank you for reading it. Now, where was I? I wanted to keep Fear as mainly Han's POV so I felt the best way to switch POV was to write a new fic. Simple huh?
So anyway, I don't own the rights to Star Wars or any related media. I write this fic for no other reward than my own enjoyment and that others too may enjoy it.
The word pierced Leia's brain like a blaster bolt. No, it wasn't a word, more the feeling of the word. Some kind of touch in the back of her mind that awakened her to consciousness that swept away the last of forgettable dreams from her mind. Leia wondered at the feeling, Luke hadn't really instructed her yet on sensing emotion. The only person she could usually feel was her brother. But the feeling, the fear, that wasn't Luke. Someone closer.
A muffled sob next to her suddenly brought Leia out of her philosophical musing. Opening her eyes Leia realised it was the dead of night, the room a mere shadow of its daylight self. Leia sat up as she could feel the convulsions of the other occupant of the bed next to her. The person beside her gave another short moan. Startled, Leia whispered,
"Han?" Reaching out into the darkness she managing to lay a hand on the shadowy form of her husband beside her. Leia heard another sound, this time it felt (felt?) like the formation of a word, a familiar one that had been uttered to her many times before.
"Han? What is it?" Leia asked, unnerved by her husband. She reached over and switched on the lights, fearful of what ailed her beloved husband.
Leia turned back to Han to find a trebling figure in his place. His hair was wet with sweat, his eyes pressed tightly shut against the light. He had stopped writhing but his chest rose and fell with the erratic motion of stifled sobs that Leia could see even through the covers that Han clung to in the fists of his hands. His cheeks where as red as the gas storms of Yavin and she could see damp tears at the corners of his eyes. She couldn't recall ever seeing him this way. No, she had, once, years ago when she held him through the stuffy and ill-fitting clothes of a bounty hunter. He'd been afraid then too. So had she.
Leia watched as Han slowly opened his eyes, blinking, he looked up at her. He seemed to relax a little at the sight of her, his face softening slightly.
"Leia!" Han breathed as he struggled up. There it was again, that feeling. Leia's heart swelled with the warmth of love as he said her name. She shifted a little, putting her arms around Han. Immediately Han seem to calm as Leia instinctively willed her mind as well as her body to embrace her husband. Han still was shaking but somehow Leia knew he was calm. Leia's mind briefly jumped to thoughts of Luke and Jedi. Don't flip on me now kid. Isn't that what Han would say if he knew you were getting hockey ideas like that!
"What are you afraid of?" Leia asked, quoting back at Han words he had used so long ago, long before so much pain. Han gave her a startled look. Leia hugged Han closer, whispering into his ear, "You're trembling." There was a pause and Han drew himself up from the cowering position he was in. Shifting out of her grip, he looked at her with blood shot eyes. He ran a hand over his mouth and stubble covered chin. He opened his mouth to speak; the word was like dry, cracked permacrete.
"Fear." He said leaning into his wife once again. Leia allowed herself to take the weight of Han's upper body as silent tears ran down her husband's cheeks and dripped onto the back of Leia's white silken night dress.
Leia closed her eyes and breathed steadily, willing calmness to take over, willing that the right words of comfort would come to her. Suddenly an image flashed into Leia's mind that nearly made her recoil in horror. She didn't know how, but she knew it had been part of Han's dream.
"Oh Han." She said softly in his ear. She turned her head and kissed him on his stubbly cheek, feeling warm tears and tasting the saltiness. Han turned his head, briefly meeting her lips with his. He turned away, almost as if he where ashamed. Leia held her tongue, knowing she didn't have the words to comfort and reassure him. She waited for what seemed an eternity of ragged breaths before Han's voice cracked back into life.
"Leia, I-" He began only to break off. Leia forced the image she had just seen to the back of her mind, calling forth all the courage she could muster. Calm, she breathed a mental sigh.
"I'm here." Leia said, somehow knowing that was the right thing to say. Closing her eyes briefly she saw the image again, the darkness, an orange glow nearby and a, no... her, hand dissolving into dust as Han held it. Leia breathed deeply and opened her eyes. Leia took Han's hand in her own and held it tight. Han looked down at the two hands laced together,
"It's ok." Leia said softly with all the intonation of understanding she could muster. Han gave her another slightly troubled look as he sniffed back a stray tear. Leia kissed the back of his hand and squeezed it tight. Han stifled a final sob before trying to force a smile only to shake his head, unable to dispel his fear. Leia looked into Han's eyes and repeated her reassurance. It didn't matter if even she didn't believe it, right now she had to be brave for both of them.
Thank you very much for reading. Critique and Comment welcomed equally.