A dead weight settled firmly in her stomach as she stared at the depraved city of Anchorage. All she could see was the mischievous face of Mission, her little Blue. They had bonded so quickly over a short period of time, but only now she realized just how much she loved the girl. All sorts of horror scenarios were swimming through her head, making her intestines squirm like a nest of snakes.
Xana had broken her promise.
She had promised to protect Mission, protect her like a little sister, but had failed that task. Some sorry motherfucker had laid his hands on her little Twi'lek because of her carelessness. It was the only possible conclusion. Mission was clever, she would've been able to make it back to the ship on her own, unless she had been stopped by a stronger force.
Her eyes broke free from the brown skyline, landing on the people around her. Their faces were uniform in worry. Carth's face had turned ghostly pale and his eyes and mouth were tightly clenched. Canderous – usually the stoic one – was frowning as he scratched his day old stubbles, his eyes darting around the group as well. Bastila was seemingly trapped between pity and indecision, but most of all lost as how to tackle the situation.
Yet none of their faces came even close to the look of unbridled anger Juhani was sporting, much to Xana's surprise. The Cathar was dipping so deep into her fury she looked ready to storm the city and murder each and every single individual until they had found their lost companion.
A sentiment Xana started to share when she saw Zaalbar's tormented face. The boy had been kicked around, bullied and abused, until Mission stood up for him and became his friend, bringing happiness in his otherwise bleak life. She had been his life, the reason he still lived and hadn't given up. Without his best friend he'd be absolutely lost in this world. Something inside her snapped, her panic made way for something entirely different.
Xana was not livid. She wasn't enraged, not angry. There was no word strong enough for describing the ice-cold furnace raging in the depths of her soul. The former scoundrel had been pushed across every possible cliff and was now sticking so close in her fury it made her bondmate choke in fear. Xana could actually feel Bastila's helplessness through the Bond, but it was drowned out by something entirely different.
A sliver of darkness brushed her soul, offering quick and sure retribution to Mission's assaulters. All she had to do was reach out and grab it, submit to the seduction of the Dark Side, and vengeance would be hers. It would be so easy to just take it and become a God.
And why the hell not? What did she have to lose at this point? Malak's crusade was unstoppable, it was only a matter of time until the entire Galaxy bowed under his rule. She didn't even stand a chance with her current strength.
As she reached out, succumbing under the sweet scent of endless power, Xana's vision started to blur. Stars and vague hallucinations crossed her eyes. She heard a sharp voice that she instinctively knew belonged to Revan. She could feel Revan's desperation. 'For fuck's sake, Malak! I told you not to become victim to your fucking anger! I know your fury, I feel it too, but the Jedi's betrayal doesn't give us a free card to do whatever the fuck we want! Look at what giving in to your anger made you do, Malak. Genocide… Telos' entire population dead. You've become the Dark monster we so desperately tried to stop!'
Just like that Xana's fury was gone. It was as if Revan's tirade had switched on a light bulb, as if the Dark Lord's desperation not to give in to her emotions had become an integral part of her.
Revan was right, of course, as Xana had experienced herself as well. Becoming victim to strong emotions solves nothing. During her fight with Juhani during her Padawan Trial her overconfidence had nearly gotten her killed. Juhani herself had nearly murdered her Master because she had given in to her Inner Beast. Inside the Crystal Caverns on Dantooine Xana's worry for Bastila's safety had made her brutally murder a Mandalorian, who should've been taken in for interrogation to find out how he knew about the Jedi Enclave's location.
The examples were abundant and they all gave a clear signal. It was time to stop messing around like a little girl and to start acting like a grown woman, no, a Jedi Knight. Revan had resisted embracing her anger and so would Xana. She was going to take responsibility, because judging by Bastila's helpless, indecisive frown and Juhani's obvious fury the two actual Jedi Knights were out.
She stepped into the center of the group, poised in determination, and watched every single face with cold demand. "Alright listen up, this is what we're going to do. Bastila, you take Zaalbar and Ordo and ask around the local offices. Czerka, the hunting lodge, the bars, the dock manager, anyone. Find out if they saw anything suspicious. If trouble pops up we'll know through the Bond."
Bastila nodded, clearly relieved that Xana was taking charge, but also looking worried about her sudden change of demeanor. "What will you do?"
"I'm taking Juhani and Carth to the droid shop." When she received some blank stares she elaborated, "He has an assassination droid for sale. If there's anything capable of tracking down a single individual, it's that droid."
Juhani, however, flared up in anger. "Careful who you order around, padawan."
This time Xana didn't succumb. "Then what would you have us do? Storm the city and mangle everyone?" Her cold, collected tone silenced Juhani, who for the first time looked a bit uncertain. Xana took this opportunity and invaded her personal space, looking the Cathar deep in the eyes. "There's no time for playing mistress and plaything. My girl is out there, in Force knows what kind of horrible position. She's scared and she needs me. I'm getting her back and you are going to help me like a loyal companion. Understood?"
The anger faded somewhat from Juhani's yellow eyes. She tilted her head to the side and observed the smaller human curiously, like she saw her for the first time. The cogs were visibly spinning behind her eyes and finally she caved in, bowing her head ever so slightly. "I don't trust my temper right now. Lead on."
Xana watched Juhani keenly a moment longer, only releasing her gaze when she was absolutely sure there'd be no bullshit, because she was tolerating none. She turned to the others. "Bastila, take your team and go. Carth, you have two minutes to lock up the Ebon Hawk and activate its automated defenses. The bird's going to have to fend for herself for a while."
Before Bastila left she moved in to give her bondmate a brief hug. "Don't do anything rash," she whispered. Their gazes locked for a second longer, conveying confidence that made them both feel a bit calmer. Then, without wasting any more time, Bastila turned around and left with Ordo and Zaalbar to do as she was told.
After locking up the Ebon Hawk Carth joined the two Jedi to go to the droid shop. Xana kept up a brisk pace, but kept stealing suspicious glances at Juhani. To her ongoing surprise the feline was almost meek as she followed the padawan, like she was giving Xana the chance to prove herself. Or perhaps she didn't trust herself at the moment, afraid her fury would rouse her Inner Beast.
Xana didn't understand where Juhani's incredible anger came from. Sure, the Cathar got along fine with Mission, but it didn't look much like friendship to Xana. Then again, the feline never showed any emotions besides anger or distaste, for all she knew Juhani could consider Mission her BFF.
The important part was that by submitting Juhani had given Xana a hand, and she intended taking the whole arm. It was foolish that Xana wasn't in charge of the mission only because of her rank. That would change today, because if the Cathar would try anything funny she wouldn't budge an inch. The only good kitten's a submissive kitten.
She picked up the pace, a worried frown edging deep lines in her handsome face. Never before had she felt this out of control, the helplessness of not knowing what was going on with Mission hit her hard.
Carth must've noticed her rising despair, because he fell in stride with her and said quietly, "I've been in such situations before. Powerless and desperate." He watched her glumly. "The worst part is having to suffer through the empty promises of colleagues and friends."
She watched him sharply, but softened when she saw his face. The same despair she felt herself coupled with genuine concern for Xana. "That's because you're a loner, Carth," she answered, half a smile tugging at the corner of her mouth. "Maybe hearing empty promises is exactly what I need right now."
"Everything will be okay." He let the words linger between them for a second, before asking sarcastically, "Did it work?"
This time she fully smirked. "Of course it didn't, you ass."
"Hey, you wanted me to try!" he protested defensively, but grinning as well, the expression momentarily driving back the haunted look in his eyes.
"And being the obedient marine you are you mindlessly followed the mighty Jedi's order, didn't you?"
His features became careful. "No, I was trying to ease my comrade's mind. We are comrades, aren't we?"
She contemplated the question for a moment, coming to the conclusion they were. Shit had happened between them, good and bad, but they were still in this together. Even now he was trying to help her, in his own, moody way. When she affirmed his question with a nod he looked relieved. "Doesn't make you any less of an ass, though," she grinned.
"It takes one to know one," he countered, eliciting a chuckle from the padawan.
Having cleared the air for now they marched on in silence, quickly reaching the droid shop. Xana ordered her companions to stay guard outside, on the pretense of not wanting nasty surprises creeping in. In truth she didn't want them to see her manhandling the shopkeeper, because she sure as hell wasn't going to let the bastard swindle her.
They took their places at either side of the door as Xana marched inside, stepping into the dusty shack the second time that day. The Ithorian shopkeeper watched her warily as she approached, wearing her predatory grin and waving her arms in a wide gesture. "Yuka, ugly son of a bitch, how good to see you again!"
"Umm, good to see you too I guess," he stumbled, watching the credit chit in her hands eagerly. "Have you come to purchase HK-47?"
She gave him a firm pat on the shoulder. "That's right, you greedy scrotum neck." She smashed the chit down on the counter and eyed him firmly. "2500 credits and I'm off your wrinkled skin forever."
"Umm, actually I'm asking 5000 for it."
Xana barked a loud laugh. "Trying to fuck over a Jedi Knight. Now that's hilarious." He gulped loudly at her statement. "I tell you what, you sell me that droid for 2500 creds and me and my nasty lightsaber will be out of your miserable little life forever."
The Ithorian watched the lightsaber on her belt fearfully, feeling a hint of darkness radiating from the Jedi. He didn't have a death-wish, so he caved in and shook her hand to seal the deal. The transaction was made and the droid rewritten to follow Xana, who wasted no time to leave the miserable place and rejoin her companions. Carth was clearly impressed when he saw HK, but Juhani watched it in disgust.
As HK stepped into the sunlight he made a breathing noise, like he was deeply sucking in fresh air. "Relaxed statement: Aah, it feels good to be out of the clutches of that scrotum neck, as you so colorfully described him. My creator and you share a similar choice of words, it would've loved to meet you. Eager query: Do I get to kill somebody to celebrate my release. Please?"
"Perhaps," Xana answered darkly. "But first I need you to track somebody down. Remember Mission Vao, the girl that accompanied me this morning?"
"Observation: During our previous meeting master seemed close to this Twi'lek girl. Confused query: Why would master want this meatbag to die?"
"I don't want her dead, you cock. She's lost, kidnapped most likely. I want her back. So you better prove you're worth my investment, or I'll have you refurbished into a food synthesizer and pray you'll do a better job than our current one."
"Like that's a hard thing to accomplish," Carth muttered, still shivering from yesterday's miscreation called diner.
"Confident statement: Take me to the place you saw her last and be prepared to be amazed. Advice: Do hold it in your pants once my superior tracking prowess has you swayed. Meatbag's squishy parts tend to become raw after continuous contact with metal. Addendum: Unless sufficiently lubed, of course."
Despite the situation Xana couldn't help but grin, she already loved the droid's verbal answer to everything. Not Carth though, he watched the metal creature in disgust. "What kind of droid makes sexist jokes? His creator had a sick sense of humor." Juhani downright refused looking at the thing. Her race didn't like technology as a whole and coupled with her stern religious views on love it wasn't hard to see why she hated it.
Not Xana, though. "His creator was a Boss, period. Bet it was a hot chick."
Carth rolled his eyes. "In your mind everyone's a hot chick."
"Never let the truth ruin a happy thought," the raven haired woman fired back with a wink, before turning grim once more. "Let's go bring Mission home."
Mission came to in a dimly lit room. She was lying on a soft bed, which had a size that defied all laws of bedcrafting. A piece of furniture with the sole purpose of sleeping and snoozing simply shouldn't be this big, unless it was meant for a couple of Banthas. It was placed in a room with metallic walls, the red linen being the only color here. She realized she had been taken to a spaceship of some kind. Panic threatened to overwhelm her, but she resisted it. Xana had taught her not to let fear rule her and she wouldn't let her down.
Breathing in she smelled the faint scent of flowers coming off the linen. The scent made her slightly lightheaded, so she quickly hopped off the bed to investigate. Just as she reached the only door of the room it opened with a loud hiss, allowing two figures entrance. Mission had to swallow hard when her eyes met the gentle curves of two scantily clad Twi'lek women who were very, very beautiful. Their faces were incredibly cute, even for Twi'lek standards, with soft grey skin and lips that made her insides churn. Black leather clung to their bodies as a second skin, but left more exposed than covered. All she saw were curving lines and soft flesh.
One of them offered her a relieved smile. "Oh good, you're awake. We were afraid something permanent had happened to you." She spoke in Huttese, her voice all soft and seductive breaths. The combination of the body with that voice made Mission's fear melt instantly.
The Twi'lek who had spoken rushed forward and grabbed her in an embrace, effectively pushing Mission's face between her breasts. Very naked breasts, as the leather armor left the inside of her bosom completely open. The floodgates to her face and lekku opened, she felt herself flush like never before. The other Twi'lek moved to hug from behind, leaving her in a warm sandwich of velvety skin.
"Don't be scared now," the front Twi'lek cooed while gently rubbing her cheek. The feeling sent little sparks through her face and lekku. "You're safe with us."
"Totally safe," the other whispered in her ear, tickling the skin there with her breath.
"W-w-who a-are yo-you?" she stumbled, all senses going into overdrive.
"We're Seer'aa and Teer'aa, my love. You were rushing through the alleys all alone when you were knocked out by a group of thugs. When they started hauling you away we rescued you. God knows what they wanted to do with you. Tatooine isn't a place for pretty women on their own."
Terror clasped her throat, but the rear Twi'lek rubbed her stomach and the other let her hand wander to the base of her lek. The sensitive appendage was quivering in anticipation. "We couldn't just let them have their way with you, so we dealt with them and took you to the safety of our ship."
"T-thank y-you very m-much, ma'am."
The two women giggled softly, never letting their soft fingers stop caressing Mission's skin. A tiny part told her this was very wrong, but it was overwhelmed by the massive arousal forming in the pit of her stomach. She had never felt this way before. If they continued like this…
"What do you mean, you can't find her?" Juhani's voice rang shrill through the deserted street. They had been aimlessly wandering through Anchorhead's maze of streets, following the piece of machinery that was constantly scanning its surroundings for any trace of Mission.
HK-47 was as unfazed by her blazing eyes as only a droid could be. "Rephrase: This unit is unable to pinpoint the location of the blue meatbag."
The Cathar grabbed the droid by the shoulders and shook him, just for good measure. "I know what you meant, you useless piece of cogs. Why can't you bloody find her?"
"Self-diagnosis: It appears some incapable lout has made some ill repairs to my tracking device. Without it in proper function I 'can't find shit', as my former master would've put it." The pleasant tone of the droid made Juhani growl in frustration. She walked a few steps away from it, pulling her single strand of hair.
She turned sharply around and pointed at the orange droid. "My people had ways of dealing with deserters like you! You'd be bound, put in a sack of the thickest, black cloth and hung in a tree in the burning sun. You'd be left there for days, with a raging fire underneath you to keep you hot at night. After days of being slowly stewed you'd be as obedient as a little whelp! Now take us to Mission!"
Xana felt slightly uneasy from that mental image, partially because it solidified the idea that Juhani wasn't really a bitch out of free will, but was simply what her people had made her. Still, this was no time for the hellcat to lose control. "Juhani, silence!" Her voice snapped like a whip. The feline looked around uncertainly, meeting strict green eyes. "It's a droid, you can't intimidate it. Take a few good breaths, lady, cause your Beast's rearing its head."
"Let it come," the feline growled darkly, her eyes sparkling madly. "It'll hunt down Mission's kidnappers and end this madness!"
"Oh bloody hell, haven't you learned anything?" The raven haired woman took a deliberate yet measured step forward, trying to strike a balance between looking commanding and intimidating. Juhani had to succumb, not lose control because she felt threatened. "Your Beast only wants to sate its bloodlust! It's not going to help anyone."
Juhani's breath steadied somewhat and a hint of uncertainty shone behind the fury in her eyes. Xana was gaining ground and knew she had to press on. Taking another step forward they were now separated by only two feet. "Think of what you learned at your Knight Trial. Remember how you tamed the Beast."
Eyes battled for dominance, but in the end it was yellow that turned away, full of regret and shame. The tall, sinewy Cathar closed her eyes and got down on her knees. Clasping her hands together she started muttering a quiet prayer in her own language, not knowing Xana could understand each and every word. The human kept a respectful silence, impressed and a bit jealous by such unwavering confidence in an unproven deity and the strength gained from it.
The tension visibly left the feline's body during the prayer and when she got to her feet she looked as steady and collected as ever. Her yellow eyes found Xana's. "I apologize. It was not my intention to compromise our mission."
The genuine apologize both surprised and impressed Xana. Despite being obnoxiously proud, the Cathar had no qualms setting aside her pride when she knew she had been wrong. Many people, herself included, could take a leaf out of her book. "No harm done," she smiled, patting the younger woman's arm briefly, then frowned. "You're pretty worried about Mission. You like her, don't you?"
The feline was suddenly defensive. "You're taking a fourteen-year-old girl on the most dangerous mission of the century, with a Mandalorian no less. Can you blame me for being protective?"
A knowing smirk grew on Xana's lips. "The big, bad warrior has a soft spot for the tiny, cute Twi'lek. Sweet."
Juhani growled dangerously. "If you must know, she and Zaalbar are the only ones in your group who've been warm and welcoming to me." That wiped the smug grin from Xana's face. Seeing the human's guilt Juhani quickly continued. "I'm hard to like, I know that. 'A people as harsh as the planet they're named after.' That doesn't mean I enjoy not being liked. Mission's kindness was a welcoming change." Fury once more blazed in her yellow eyes. "If someone hurt her…"
"Alright, alright, enough." Happy as Xana was that Juhani cared about her girl, that wouldn't do them any good if she killed everyone in a blind rage. "Control that temper, we'll find her!" Juhani's shoulders slumped when she realized she was not as much in control as she would've preferred. Xana turned to Carth and the droid. "Let's think this through for a moment…"
"You're very cute," the front Twi'lek whispered, her breath hot against Mission's cheek. "What's your name, sweetie?"
"I-It's Mission, ma'am. M-Mission Vao."
"Such a beautiful name," the other all but moaned. Again the compliment sent her blood flowing wildly, and to her dismay she felt her panties going moist. Why was this happening? This shouldn't be happening, her body had never done this before. "Why were you all alone, rushing through those dangerous streets?"
"I-I wasn't alone! I was with my… with my… with Xana!" Worry overwhelmed her as she remembered what had happened. "She's in danger! I must get back to the ship to get help!" She tried to worm free, but the two women were too strong. Only now she noticed their arms and stomachs were taut and muscled. Not to mention they had defeated a group of thugs. They weren't ordinary Twi'leks. "W-who are you really?"
She looked up at the woman in front of her, who smiled sweetly down on her. It hit her like a brick wall. "Don't worry dear," she answered pleasantly, while leaning forward to place a soothing kiss on Mission's cheek. "We'll help you get back to your Xana."
The hand that had been caressing her cheek finally moved to carefully take hold of a lek. The sensation almost made her faint, all her senses burned from arousal. She faintly wondered why the strange hands didn't hurt – normally only family and lovers could touch the oversensitive tentacles and make it feel good instead of painful or unpleasant – but she couldn't think straight anymore. All she could think of was the beautiful face in front of her, the sweet perfume in her nostrils, the soft flesh surrounding her and the even softer fingertips playing gently with her lek.
"What's her surname and the name of her ship?"
"It's Grey!" she answered without thought, her mind not processing anymore what she was saying. "Her ship's the Ebon Hawk!"
The two women eyed each other in surprise, then looked back at the girl in their arms. "Oh? We heard there was a Jedi Knight aboard that ship."
"T-there is! Xana's a Jedi and she's with Bastila. Bastila Shan!" She was looking at the taller woman pleadingly. "I must get back to them." The Twi'lek behind her placed a kiss in her neck, eliciting a moan from the girl. It was becoming way too much, she could hardly keep standing. "P-please."
"Hush, don't worry, we'll take you back." Both cheeks were grabbed by soft hands. "But you must calm down, love. In this state you'll only do silly things." Mission gulped as she watched the beautiful Twi'lek's soft eyes. The warm, grey depths pulled her in.
"Can't say I've seen such a girl fittin' that description, missy. Where'd ya last see her?"
Bastila tapped her foot impatiently, not liking the unshaven hunter one bit. "We lost her in the western part of town."
Bushy eyebrows disappeared behind an unkempt fringe. "What's a wee lill' lass doin' there? That place's dangerous, ya know? Buildings on the verge of collapsin', 'n' all. Not to mention them sorry hobos stirrin' up trouble, bein' bored out of their minds." His words did little to ease her anxiety. Bastila stormed out of the smoky hunter's lodge, knowing she wouldn't get anything useful out of the self-centered hunters.
She felt lost. Despite being a rascal Bastila admired the young Twi'lek. She was everything Bastila hadn't been in her youth: freethinking, fearless and always ready to voice her opinion, even against her superiors. Without second thought the girl had thrown herself into this quest to stop the Sith, completely unfazed by the dangers they might encounter. If the knight had had just an ounce of Mission's bravery her life would've looked much different now.
But she didn't feel pity for herself, because she knew Xana and Zaalbar would be devastated if something were to happen to Mission. Xana had found something in the girl that she desperately needed after a life without closeness. Mission had become someone to protect, to tutor and to love. Despite being slightly jealous of their close relationship, she also found it wonderful to see bloom.
Zaalbar whined lowly, catching Bastila's attention. The massive creature had slumped down against the wall of the hunting lodge, waiting for good news from the knight, but his hope was crushed seeing her grim face. She knew she had to reassure him somehow, but hardly knew where to begin. Xana was the one who was good with people, not Bastila.
She gently touched his shoulder and mustered a kind smile. "Zaalbar, no tears. At the end of this day you'll have your best friend back, I assure you."
Ordo, who had been leaning against the wall lazily, let out a dry snort. "Jedi are clairvoyant now, are they? Is that why they so adequately ended the Mandalorian Wars in such a clean way?"
His harsh comment made the Wookie whimper only more. Bastila shot the Mandalorian a dirty look. "You are not helping," she hissed. "Ignore the mercenary," she said kindly to Zaalbar. "We'll find her."
"How can you be so sure, Lady Bastila?" he asked in his sad grunts.
Well, that was a simple question. "Because Xana is after her." The conviction in her voice made him look up, hope shining in his eyes. "You know she's the single most stubborn creature alive, she'll switch day and night to find the girl if she has to."
He nodded, getting to his feet. "Yes, she will." Something resembling a smile flitted across his face. "We must help too! We haven't been at the Czerka office yet, maybe they've seen something."
Bastila smiled, relieved she had been able to ease his mind. Perhaps she could deal with people, if only she tried. "Let's go."
"What are you doing on Tatooine anyway? There's nothing here but sand, gruff miners and ugly hunters."
"And beautiful Twi'lek ladies," Mission blurted out.
The two women giggled, before each press a kiss on Mission's cheeks. "My, my… you looked so shy, but you're actually a big flirt." Mission grinned goofily at that, proud that she had complimented the two most beautiful women on Tatooine. Xana would be proud of her as well. "And you must be something of a big shot if you're traveling with Jedi."
The compliment really got to her and she heaved her chest in pride. "Xana couldn't do without me," she replied with a smug grin. "I'm her best tech expert."
The two women gasped. "Amazing, you must be very skilled then." Mission nodded eagerly as the woman in front of her looked at her with an impressed smile. Hands were still roaming her body, making her feel nothing short of euphoric. She noticed they went everywhere, except where she most wanted them. Maybe if she impressed them some more?
"Back on Taris I helped her escape the Sith bombardment! And right now we're on a super-secret quest to find the source of Darth Malak's power!"
"Ooh, impressive," one of them cooed. "Is it here on Tatooine?"
"Nah, not here," Mission replied importantly, glad to know something these two incredible women didn't. "But part of the map showing its location is. We're trying to find all pieces and figure out where it is. Then we'll send the entire Republic fleet to bomb their asses to smithereens!"
She didn't notice the two Twi'lek exchanging a victorious look. "That's really impressive dear. So this Xana is something of a big shot then?"
"She's really strong! Much stronger than those stupid Councilors claim she is. But she lost her memories and can be a bit evil at times, so they don't trust her. But she has her heart at the right place, she really does! She wants to help the galaxy, not destroy it."
"She sounds like a wonderful woman." Once again Mission felt proud, but this time for her big sis. Xana really was the greatest person ever. "But don't you think she could do more good if she claimed this power source for her own?" the front Twi'lek asked softly, while continuing to massage both the girl's lekku, sending incredible pleasure through her body with each pulse. "She could use it to destroy all evil, make the galaxy a peaceful place. It's not just the Sith who are evil, right?"
"I… you… that's…" Mission faltered. She had never seen it in that perspective before. Could it work?
"Ah, forget it. It was just a silly idea. Let's return you to your master, before she gets worried."
Just like that the fingers stopped roaming her body. Mission immediately missed the contact, her body and lekku yearning for more of that wonderful sensation. But as she meekly followed the two women out of the ship into the fresh air her mind was allowed to breathe again. She could hardly remember what had been said between them anymore, all she could think about was the incredible sensation of being touched by these women.
The two Twi'leks had been very, very interested in her. And Mission had been very, very interested in them.
She swallowed hard as the gravity of that thought dawned to her. She had been aroused. She had been aroused and not from a boy. She had been aroused from two girls! This wasn't normal! This wasn't normal, at all!
Her face burned again, but this time from shame.
They regrouped at the Ebon Hawk, empty-handed. Bastila hadn't had any luck asking around the locals and HK-47 was still a malfunctioning piece of crap. Xana's mind was working overtime, trying to conjure up a solution to their problem. Only one time before had she felt so out of control and desperate, and that was when she had given up on life. She thought she had outgrown that weak woman, but now wasn't so sure anymore.
She was all but ready to tear out her own hair in desperation when the group was alarmed by a cry.
She almost couldn't believe her ears when she heard the familiar voice, but when she wheeled around she saw a teary-eyed Mission running toward her. "Mission!" The balloon that had nestled itself uncomfortably in her stomach popped, letting relieve course through her veins like spring after a depressing winter. She rushed forward to intercept the girl, scooping her up in her arms and hugging her close. She hardly couldn't believe she was actually holding her girl again. "You're alright," she whimpered, fighting to keep her tears at bay.
"So are you," Mission muttered into the crook of her neck. "Did you defeat the black Jedi?"
Xana barked a ragged laugh. "I've survived a blood-enraged Juhani, of course we were able to defeat some Sith pansies." The Twi'lek giggled and hugged her big sis close again. Then she released Xana and hugged Zaalbar, who had also ran to their lost team member and was trembling in joy.
"Hey Big-Z! Sorry for making you worried."
He was openly crying. "I'm sorry for not being there for you!"
The rest of the group joined as well, their faces showing relief and happiness, and Xana shared a smile with Bastila. They chuckled watching the Twi'lek and Wookie locked in what looked like a bone crushing hug. It was endearing to see the massive warrior exchange soft words of affection with the girl. Her eyes found Juhani, who was as emotionless as ever again, her eyes flitting their surroundings searching for danger, always thinking of her duty. Yet even the harsh woman showed little signs of relief, like the way her eyes kept landing on Mission before darting off again.
Mission released the Wookie and went straight back to Xana, burying her head on her shoulder. Xana patted her head lovingly, her eyes full of concern as she watched the small being. "So what happened to you?"
The girl shivered. "Some thugs knocked me out when I was running back to the ship. Two Twi'lek ladies saw me being carried away and rescued me. They took me back to their ship and kept me safe until I was strong enough to return here."
Xana shared a concerned look with Bastila and Juhani. "Who were these ladies? No ordinary women if they were able to rescue you from thugs."
"I'm not sure, but they were dressed like mercenaries. Leather and stuff."
To her surprise Xana saw a blush grow on Mission's blue cheeks. "That must've been quite a sight. Were they beautiful?"
"Yes, incredibly!" The words slipped out of her mouth before she could stop them. When she realized what she had just said she clasped her hands before her mouth, looking at Xana with eyes full of shame and… fear? Why was Mission scared of Xana all of a sudden?
"They didn't do anything to you?" Bastila inquired gently. "Didn't ask strange questions?"
"No!" the Twi'lek immediately answered, her face still burning. "They were really kind to me and calmed me down. They even brought me back to the docks, but because they were late for an appointment I told them I could walk the last bit alone." She looked a bit troubled. "I hope they're not late because of me."
"Maybe we should have a word with these two Twi'leks," the brunette pressed, looking thoughtful. "See if there wasn't an ulterior motive behind their actions."
Mission looked a bit angry when she looked at the brunette "They were just being kind, jeez! What would you do if you saw some shady types hauling off an unconscious girl?"
Xana quickly interjected, gently cupping the girl's cheek and looking her intently in the eyes. "Blue, we're just worried. About you and the safety of our mission. You're sure there wasn't anything strange about them?"
The little thief thought hard for a moment, but then shook her head with a blank face. "I can't remember them asking anything strange. They were… nice, that's all."
Xana held her gaze a moment longer, spotting no lie in Mission's eyes. She smiled warmly. "They sound wonderful." She hugged the girl close and lifted her clean off her feet, swirling her around and making her laugh cheerfully. Xana put her down again and held her by the shoulders at arm's length, smiling mischievously at her. "You. Me. Candy shop. Pronto!"
Mission cheered happily and bumped fists with her big sis. Without as much as another glance at the rest of the group they set off to the story. Juhani immediately moved after them, signaling Bastila she'd take care of the duo. The silver eyed woman just shook her head with a small smile, allowing the two their time alone.
They bought as much candy as Mission could eat, and then some. Xana was surprised how much sweets could fit inside the tiny girl. When she had satisfied her gluttony Mission gave her big sis a big hug. "Thank you for this treat!"
Xana laughed warmly and patted her on her head. "You deserved being spoiled a little after all the shit you've gone through."
The girl flushed a bit. "It wasn't that bad, really." She grinned awkwardly.
Xana gave her a knowing wink. "Enjoyed being rescued by two beautiful women, did we?"
The small thief quickly looked away. "Did not." Again the shame and fear showed on her face.
Xana squeezed her gently. "Hey, it's alright. I won't judge you for the way you feel." Mission's face softened, but she still looked uncomfortable. "You're at a nasty age where your feelings can become confusing. If you ever want to talk about it, I'm always there for you, alright?"
The Twi'lek nodded, before yawning widely. "I'm tired now."
Xana recognized the girl was trying to change subjects, so she simply smiled and ushered the girl outside where they were joined by Juhani, who was still standing watch. They returned to the ship to take their rest for now. Their investigation would continue tomorrow.
A/N: Hey guys, remember me? Sorry for disappearing for such a long time, I've been out of business for a while because I've gotten ill. If you're interested to look it up it's called ulcerative colitis, which is an autoimmune disease. That means the actual disease can't be cured, I can only suppress the symptoms with nasty medicines. It'll be part of me for the rest of my life.
The medicines have pretty bad side-effects (I'm on Prednisolone right now), including headaches and insomnia. Those don't really combine well with working or writing. Fortunately I'm feeling a bit better with each day and the disease itself isn't life-threatening, just annoying. A few more weeks and I'll be good as new.
I hope this information dump isn't too much in your face, I just thought you guys deserve to know what's going on with me. You've all been wonderful and I'm humbled by all the support I'm getting. I really enjoy reading all your messages and reviews. I apologize if I've been a bit lousy with replying to your messages, it just hasn't been the easiest time for me.
Anyway, the story hasn't been abandoned. I will finish it. Have a nice day.