Disclaimer: George Lucas owns Anakin and Amidala and everyone else. Heck, he owns just about everything in the story. This is purely for fan enjoyment.
Notes: This takes place during the Clone Wars. I must warn you right now that I'm not a big fan of Anakin turning into Darth Vader so it probably won't end with anything like that. I hope you like this; I've been reading too many ami/obi ones I was sooooooooooooo mad. That was completely random and I'm going to write a bunch of stories to rebel against them!
This is it. Sorry I dragged it on so long but I got really busy and couldn't update!!! It's been great to say the least and please continue to REVIEW. =D
Once again, Italics means flashbacks or dreams.
"…It's been a while, since I could hold my head up high…"
No words could describe what surrounded her.
Through the dark, black void all she saw were flashbacks, memories, dreams of a time long passed. It was those memories that burned her core and scourged her soul. Memories a dashing, brawny Jedi Knight, his golden curls wavering in the sunlight and his cerulean blue eyes shining in the moonlight. Of his charming retorts, smart-aleck remarks, roguish smirk, and tender kisses. Memories of love and hate, passion and war, fever and fear -- things she had learned to dread and run from since the end of time.
Time was ending and, because of all that had happened to her, she would accept it with her chin held high, eyes closed, and arms open.
Time would feel like him. With time gone, she would always be with him, always. And she would never be afraid or lonely ever again. Just the knowledge of that made her beg for time to end sooner than she would have asked for years ago.
But when she felt content, things changed, everything before her eyes, like in life, changed. But instead, of the future in motion, the past was distorted, inconsistent -- vague. But she remembered it, as clear as her reflection in the mirror, she remembered it.
Visions and voices, distorted and incoherent, incoherent and distorted, filled her, invaded her, trapped her.
She turned, glancing into those familiar baby-blue eyes and smiled. She pulled at his neck, quickly bringing down his lips to meet her own. They kissed once. They kissed twice. He pulled away suddenly, placing his forehead against her on, "Am…"
"Ani, missed you Ani so much."
He laughed, a soft, gentle laugh, "It's only been a few days."
She slapped him playfully, "But still --"
Suddenly his lips met her, one, two, three times, "Missed you too Am."
"Come," he motioned, "Walk with me."
She pulled him down once more for a kiss--for a couple of kisses. His lips were warm and soft as he placed gentle kisses on her once cold lips. She smiled against his lips, feeling them tickle her vaguely. She laughed, "All right."
He held her hand as they walked.
Once they had reached the open air balcony, he turned and cupped her cheek with his palm, "Force you're beautiful,"
She felt the heat rise in her face as she flushed, "Why thank you sweet Ani."
He planted a kiss on her lips tenderly and then placed his finger on her lips, two simple words placing fate on her shoulder, "No words." He whispered, his lips gently hovering next to her, "No words."
He took her face in his hands, holding one cheek in each hand. "Force you're beautiful Padme." Tears welled on her eyes, "You really are."
He tried to smile, but failed. "I've loved you forever," His voice cracked, "and lifetimes before."
The sun was setting and casting a golden light on him. His golden curls danced upon his head to the unnamed beat of her heart and his as they beat in tandem. His blue eyes came into their depths, shining majestically and piercing her heart, her soul.
"There is no one else for me. I don't think I could possibly love you anymore than I do now. My heart burns for you; my soul yearns for you. My life, Padme, is incomplete without you." He took her hand and placed it on his chest, "My heart, love, beats for you."
She felt the tears burn her eyes and fall. They trailed down her porcelain face, only to have two shaky fingers wipe them away. She glanced at him and he smiled. She moved to speak, but his finger pressed against her lips, "No words Am." He paused, looking around, "Come…" He took her hand and led her away.
They ventured to the gardens, her feet never touching the ground. He led her to a bench, centered in the middle of a celestial arrangement, covered in roses. He dropped her hand as she walked over to the bench, as she did so, petals and petals fell from somewhere and enveloped her and her surroundings.
And there, in the midst, of all the red beauty, something caught her eye.
It was a velvet box with gold trim. Small and delicate yet powerful and fearsome, it held the future and pressed the past, it empowered the present and released the fears. It held questions and answers. It held his heart and the fate of the entire galaxy. When she touched the box, a shock ran through her arm and her knees began to shake in nervousness.
And when she opened it, it was empty.
She turned to question her young, dashing knight but he was gone.
Once inside the palace, she ventured to her room. She opened it only to find it filled with rose petals. As she clutched the empty ring box, the smell, his scent, filled her and she realized it was plastered all over the room. She smiled.
"Do I have to ask?"
She turned to find him standing in the doorway. A dashing, robust smirk on her face as he glanced at her passionately.
"Depends on the ring."
He smiled, laughing slightly, "Trust me on the ring."
She went to him, coming to wrap her arms around his neck, but he pulled away. She caught herself almost before she hit the ground. She met him at the balcony overlooking the sunset.
They stood there in the silence. When the sun had finally set, he took her face in his hands once more, "I knew from the moment I saw you I loved you, Padme, but you taught me to love before I ever knew how."
She moved to speak once more but he pressed his own lips against hers in a tender kiss. "No words," he paused, "Please."
He continued, "And you gave your love even when I didn't want to reach out. You were my boat in the storm and my sun on rainy days." She wiped her eyes as she felt the hot tears fall from them. "Know this is true, milady, I will always love you."
He dropped to one knee, "Padme Amidala, it would be my greatest pleasure and most definite honor that you would be my wife," He reached in his pocket and pulled out a diamond ring, carefully engraved and carved with delicacy. He held it up to her as it shined in the moonlight and with his other hand, he took her hand, placing tiny kisses on her fingers, "Because without you, I am nothing."
Visions and voices, distorted and incoherent, incoherent and distorted, filled her, invaded her, trapped her.
"I'll be back. I promise."
She wiped her eyes, "Don't make promises when you have no control over a situation."
He pressed his lips to her. Kissing her once, twice and then pulling away, "I love you Am."
She pulled the blanket tighter around her body. "I love you too Ani."
He cupped her face in his hands, "I'm sorry."
"I know." Her eyes closed briefly.
They kissed again and again and again until someone had to come over and tell him his shuttle was about to leave. He held her hand as he walked away until there was too much distance between them.
Once more, one last time, vision and voices appeared figures and figments danced in her mind, burning her heart and setting fire her soul.
There was a slight knock on her door. Sabe peaked in and closed the door softly behind her. She turned from her seat on the window to face her handmaiden, "Any word?"
Sabe's eyes fell to the ground to avoid her piercing gaze. She approached her and embraced her. She whispered then in her friend's ear, "I'm so sorry Padme. He's gone."
She collapsed then, in the arms of her friend, as tears overwhelmed her. She screamed his name knowing very well that he would not hear her call.
But it was all she could do.
She turned to the sound of him calling her name. Gone were Sabe, her window, her royal garden, and her palace. Gone were the romantic wind, the angst, and the pain. And all that remained was she in this void of darkness and his robust voice.
My beautiful Ani.
She turned and saw him. His features distinct and accurate, just like she remembered, just like they should be.
"Am I dead?"
He walked toward her, cupping her face with his hands and laughing softly in that sweet laugh she had longed to hear for so long, "Far from it."
He brought his lips down to meet her in a tender kiss. It was soft and gentle kiss as he cautiously planted his lips on her. It contained all nervousness and uncertainty of the first one they shared.
He pulled away, placing his forehead against her own in that oh so familiar way, "Force you're beautiful. You always were."
She brought her hand to his face, "Ani, miss you so much love."
He nodded, "I know."
He stopped her with his finger. "No words Am," He kissed her tenderly again, "Please no words."
She smiled, "There are none to say Ani." She brought her hand to cup his cheek, "Can't time just end?"
His eyes narrowed, "You can't possible want that Am."
"I want you Ani, not a life without you, with a different you."
He nodded, wiping tears from her eyes, "I'm sorry." He kissed her once more and hugged her tightly. "The storm's almost over, Am, hang in there. It's just not your time, though." He smiled, "It's almost over. Almost." He released her as he began to fade away. Then he spoke once last time, "I love you, Padme, I always will."
Oh, my beautiful Ani.
And she replied, in a hushed whisper, "I know."
The storm's almost over, Am. Almost.
All that was left was darkness.
And more darkness.
This time her eyes open when she turned to see who was calling her. He looked at her worriedly, "Thank the force you're alive Padme."
She shivered, feeling the cold air surround her, "How long was I out?"
He smiled his shriveled, forlorn smirk. All that was left of his once robust and charming grin, "A very long time."
Her eyes narrowed, "Why did I pass out?"
He shook his head, ignoring her question. She narrowed her eyes more, "Where's Anakin?"
His face fell and the temperature dropped in the room. He tried to look her in the eye but he couldn't. He shook his head; "I'm so sorry Padme." He paused, watching the tears fall from her eyes, "It doesn't look very good."
Every fiber of her body screamed right then and there.
My beautiful Ani.
'…I know this loves forever, that's all that matters now, no matter what…'
The only sounds were the monotone hum of the respirator and the lucent and fevered beeping of the life supporter. It beeped, ever so silently and so loudly, in tandem with her heavy heart. Goosebumps ran up and down her arms, sending shivers through her system as her eyes, so sad, tried to focus in the dreary darkness.
She could make out, slightly, from the little bit of sunlight that was allowed through his room, the frame of the bed, the silver as it glistened, and she could see the dirty blond, golden curls of her lover's head. They danced in a depressed rhythmic pattern on his head as his chest bounced up in down parallel to his breathing in and out.
His eyes were shut as the darkness drank his body, giving his skin an ugly, pale color and casting a depressed shadow over his form. Purple and black large, round circles encased his eyes as they swelled more and more.
Oh sweet Ani.
Her heart cried. Tore into pieces at the sight before her very eyes. She blinked, hoping, wishing that she could wake, that she would be somewhere else -- that this all would be surreal. He just looked so bad, so terrible, and so unreal. It was a picture from a dream, a nightmare; it was a vision that she had worked to ignore.
Gone, seemingly were his crystal clear, cerulean light blue eyes. From the shadows and the lids that covered them, they were hidden, but it seemed more as if they had disappeared, been snatched away, stolen from her grasp.
The immobile body broke her heart.
Oh, my beautiful Ani.
From behind her, she saw the movement of white cloth, the reflex of a thin arm, the ushering of her body. "Take this seat, Lady Skywalker." The nurse took a deep breath, her eyes falling on Ani, "Talk to him. He can hear you."
Padme's eyes fell on his face once more and before she could say anything the nurse had whisked away. She brought her tiny, petite hands to rub her exhausted face and then looked over at Anakin, half smiling, half frowning. But as soon as the smile had come, it had disappeared.
"Anakin." She looked down at the floor, taking several deep breaths and exhaling quickly.
She looked up then, shaking her head back and forth, and grasped his hand in her own. His hand was so cold, so pale -- so lifeless. It made tears fall from her eyes, was her Ani dead?
"Ani…" She breathed, "Sorry," She sniffled, "I'm not that good at talking like this, you know me."
"I dreamed of you Ani," She gripped his hand tighter, "Do you remember? You were there." She shook her head suddenly, "Of course you wouldn't remember, it was only a dream." She bit her lip, thinking off into space, "A very real dream though."
She turned back to the man who had once been her lover and tighten once more the grip she held on his hand, "You want to know my dream Anakin?" She smiled slightly inside; "It was the most beautiful dream I have ever had. It was the day you proposed to me."
She wiped her eyes, "That was a happy time, wasn't it Ani? Everything was fine. We were fine." She sniffled, "Why did it all go wrong Ani? What did we do to deserve this?"
She reached over and cupped his cheek; "I thought our love was so strong. We believed it could overcome anything, didn't we? We believe it could beat the Jedi order, that it could beat time even. We were foolish though so foolish. We couldn't overcome anything," She sniffled again, "We only beat ourselves." She closed her eyes as a tear fell and hit his hand; "Indeed our love was strong; too strong."
She looked away and wiped her face again and came to look over at him once more, "The doctors say there's been a lot of damage. They don't know for sure how much." She released his face and gripped his hand once more, "They say Obi-wan found you just in time."
She went to caress his golden brown hair; "He's a good friend isn't he? Always looking out for us, always saving us."
She sniffled and wiped her eyes as the tears continued to flow now more than ever, "He saved me Ani you know. He saved me from the pit of despair," She paused, "I was six feet from the edge, Ani, six feet." She stared away suddenly her eyes loosing focus; "It could've been closer than that. I don't remember."
She looked back at him; "All I remember is thinking that it was over. That I was going to do this, to put myself out of misery, to follow you like I swore to. I was ready to jump, to kill myself, so ready -- it hurt to live."
She wiped her eyes, "But he convinced me, he told me that he knew somewhere you were alive, that you were worth living for, that it wasn't the end." She smiled remembering, recollecting, "He saved me."
A loose tear fell, "He saved me even when our love couldn't save me. When our love didn't save me."
She took a deep breath, sniffling slightly, "I love you Ani, I love you so much it hurts to love, it aches and when you're not with me, that love hurts me more then I can comprehend, more than I can bear." She wiped her eyes as she began to weep, "I love you so much, I'd die just to be with you."
She wiped her eyes again, as the tears came more rapidly, "The doctor says you had a clot in your brain and its possible, very likely, it caused severe damage." She sniffled, "They say there's a chance you won't remember anything, that you won't remember me or who you were or who you had been."
She shook her head though, placing her hand on his face once more to cup his cheek, "But I don't care anymore Anakin, I don't. Something inside me changed that day, the day I feel in love with you, not the Anakin you had been before, but you." She paused, "I don't care anymore if you remember or if you don't just as long as I'm with you."
She paused, standing, "Because I love you for who you are, not who he was. I love you, Anakin Skywalker."
She stroked his hair lightly, "I don't know if you'll hear me when I say this but I love you Anakin, I will always love you no matter what."
Then, with the lightness and the chaste of their first kiss, she leaned forward slowly, bringing her lips down to gently caress his own motionless, pale ones. It was a tender kiss; one filled with love and with passion, but at the same time held anxiety and eagerness.
She had been waiting so long to kiss those lips, to feel them pressed against her own once more. But it had not been another kiss; it had been her first kiss with him. She was glad she had waited, for no kiss had she ever shared ever been this…this…there was no word for this kiss as chaste as it had been, as loved as this, as cherished as it was.
She left then, with warm feelings in her stomach and that magical glimmer once again in her eyes.
She failed to see as she left, as her feet pattered away and her shoes banged against the floor, two cerulean blue eyes open and stare as her shadow disappeared.
Through the darkness, there was light once more from his smile.
'…Sooner you let two hearts beat together, the sooner you know this love is forever…'
The sun set and rose several times before she saw him again.
Days passed from one visit to the next and Obi-wan informed Anakin that she would have to return back to her home once again. The doctors had ordered him to have plenty of bed rest before they released him to return to the apartment Obi-wan had rented for him in downtown Coruscant. And so, he had left, sober and solemn through the twin doors and out into the world for what he considered the very first time.
It was like leaving the womb all over again.
Everything was strange to him; everything was new.
When he had collapsed they had rushed him to the nearest hospital. For his operation, they had flown him to Corusant. Corusant was a whole new world to him. He had never been there before. It was an amazing sight.
Sure, scum littered everywhere and pollution filled the air, but those lights, was they ever a more fascinating sight then seeing a city of such a multitude lighted, united in unison with millions of colorful lights?
When Obi-wan and he reached the apartment she was there -- waiting for him, staring out the window.
Once Obi-wan had excused himself he went to stand by her.
After an excruciatingly long period of silence, she turned to him boring her brown eyes to his blue one. Blue and brown met for the first time in a very long time. Upon closer inspection, he could see the glass tears that were falling or beginning to fall down her porcelain face.
She was beautiful and he knew he would never ever see a more beautiful sight then her.
Her eyes narrowed asking questions that her voice could not and thus he began, "The Doctor says he doesn't know if my memory will return."
His voice, almost in a whisper, said words that would try to seal his fate, but hopefully not succeed.
She wiped her eyes, being open about her feeling, letting him see what it was doing to her, "I know." She replied softly.
He touched her arm lightly, "I'm sorry."
There was silence once again, the only sound her muffled breaths as she tried to keep control as tears threatened to fall. He could hear her, inhale and exhale a million times before speaking once more, "Why are you sorry? What do you have to be sorry for? It wasn't your fault and," She paused, sniffling, "It never will be."
He shook his head, focusing once more on her brown pools of loveliness, "All I remember, Padme, are things from only a few years ago. Nothing from before the accident, nothing of our time together, the good times." He paused, reaching up to wipe a tear from her flushed cheek, "I'm sorry, Padme, I really wish I could remember."
"Oh, Ani," She sighed, "Oh, sweet Ani."
He looked away, off to the side, so he wouldn't have to look her in the eye, "I wish I could truly be there for you, Padme."
She pulled at his chin so he would look at her once again, "Oh sweet Ani, don't you see?" She smiled, reaching up to caress the very top of his head; "You are here for me. You're here with me, are you not?"
She wiped her eye, reaching to hold his hand in her own, "I don't care if you remember everything or nothing at all, Ani. All I care about is that you're here with me -- now," she smiled, "And forever. Nothing else matters, love."
"But--" Dropping his hand, she pressed her finger to his lips, silencing him.
"It's not a bad thing Ani, think of it as…starting over. A second chance."
He closed his eyes, thinking and then opened them to meet hers. There was a new light in them. He smiled at her, "Yes," He breathed, "A second chance." He looked away and then turned back to meet her eyes, "I want to make it up to you Padme, I want to make amends for all I did."
She smiled, "Oh, Ani, you don't have to."
He nodded his head, his eyes gleaming, "Yes, I do." He reached to hold her hands in his own, "And to start that, I have to get to know you better."
A smile played across her lips and her eyes danced humorously, "Ask away, Ani."
It was then, his turn to grow a mischievous smirk, "What's your favorite scent?"
She shook her head, her smile grow wider, "Vanilla." She paused, "What's yours?"
He leant forward pressing his head in that small part of her body where the shoulder met the neck and then he breathed out and smile. Turning to her, he replied, "Whatever you wear, doesn't matter as long as you're wearing it."
He paused, thinking, "What is your favorite place to go?"
"To the beach by my apartment where I can walk the shores and not be bothered," She glanced at him, her eyes narrowing, "Where is yours?"
"In your arms."
She laughed, "You're a sweet talker, Ani."
He smiled, "Course I am." He sobered then, taking her in his arms, holding her by her waist, "What was your first kiss?"
She smiled, bringing her arms to wrap around his neck, "Henry Sharper, secondary school." She reached to caress his hair, "Yours?"
He smiled and then sobered, leaning forward so their faces were inches apart. He breathed in, closing the distance and just before their lips met he replied, "Right now."
And then their lips met for the first time in what seemed like ages. It was a chaste, gentle kiss as he pressed to her lips, caressing them softly with his own before he pulled away.
Her lips were soft and gentle, sweet and tender and somehow he remembered they were just like they had always been.
He had never felt so many emotions until their lips met. It was the taste of something vaguely familiar, but that had begun to turn foreign. Things began to fall in place; images began to reinsert themselves. It seemed that as soon as their lips had met everything fell back in place.
Vision, incoherent and distorted, distorted and incoherent, all fell into place, all became clear.
And for her of course, she had been sent spiraling, not expecting to feel his lips press against her so soon. Not expecting to be sent bent over backwards through time once again. It was Ani, she realized, though in another shape and form, it was Ani and it always would be.
His lips, so not use to the feel of hers pressed against them were still moist and sweet like they had been before he pulled out of that hanger, into space, and what had seemed like out of her life.
It was a short kiss, one of shyness and uncertainty, but at the same time one full of love and passion. It was a kiss no less -- their first kiss.
He pulled away after one kiss and looking her straight in the eyes. She was crying and for what seemed like the first time she was crying happy tears of joy and excitement. They were tears of joy and that made him happy.
"I love you Ani." She whispered, pulling his face forward for another kiss.
But, before their lips met he replied, "I love you too Am."
Surprised, she pulled back farther away to look at his face fully, "You remember?" She asked, her voice in a whisper.
"I remember," He whispered back, placing his hand on her cheek, "I've missed you Am, but I told you it wasn't over."
She cried then, her tears no longer crimson, but full of joy as he leaned forward to capture her lips in another kiss and another after that and after that.
Sooner or later, as tears still fell, he resorted to holding her as she wept out of pure joy and let their hearts beat together in a familiar tandem. Then, after a while, he would capture her lips once more in a tantalizing kiss and kiss her not once, not twice, but multiple times and it deepened with every kiss.
Oh, sweet beautiful Ani had returned to her.
And it felt good to be in love again.
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