Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:6:32) in the New Alderaan system: New Alderaan (New Aldera).
Commander Dillon Hobbes and Major Elayne Passik.

The brief escape from bunks, small enclosed spaces, and the smell of the Rebel hideout was welcomed in Major Passik's eyes. She had decided to attend Commander Xergo's wedding because of her husband. The plea he sent out to the Rebels when she was captured had captivated her. Those two people *loved* each other. She was glad to see that they were getting a happy ending, even though it could be short lived in this day and age. Normally nihilistic, Dillon had helped her to understand *why* people still tried during war times. Yes, Mug Zoran could have died the very next day, but at least he'd had moments of happiness with his wife.

"Shit, I've seen commercials for this garbage. I didn't realize it was going to be this good." Elayne commented as she brought a scope of Zarcus' Extra Passionate Passion Fruit to her lips. She wasn't a woman who cared too much for sweets, but even she had to recognize that the Auntie Mae franchise had it right. The parlor was newly opened in the growing downtown area of New Aldera. She had seen the commercials so many times that she wanted to try it. Of course, like the wedding, she had roped Dillon into coming with her. "How's yours? Let's trade." She said, offering him the small bowl of ice cream. The Major was in a pleasant mood. They'd been given a room inside of a house to sleep. No one had bumped their heads this morning. The temperature was just right. Oh...and the mattress was like sleeping on a million angels. Elayne felt sharper than ever before.

No trip to the bustling settlement of New Aldera was complete without a trip to Auntie Mae's. For his flavor he had selected one of the classic flavors ... Rum Raeni. "I have to admit ... it's *very* good," he said, as he pushed the bowl forward towards her. "It's peaceful here. Fresh air. Ample spaces. Hot water on demand," he said, as he suddenly felt like he was out of the war. "It was a nice wedding, at least until his drunk cousin showed up," he said, before digging his spoon into her Zarcus' Extra Passionate Passion Fruit. "So good," he mumbled through a mouthful of ice cream. "Maybe we could live here after the war..." he suggested, as he had no desire to return to Fest after all the horrors he had endured there.

She took the spoon from his bowl and gave Rum Raeni a try. It was good too! She thought she might need to copy him next time they had a chance to visit the Commander. "Hot water on demand." She said with a sigh. They could take *long* showers without having them turn icy cold. "Yes, that guy seemed like a total failure. I thought about kicking him." She flashed Dillon a smile. It would have hurt much more with her metal legs. She took another bite of his ice cream. "I can tell why everyone is addicted to this stuff. It's some good shit." She turned in her seat to look out of the expansive front window of Auntie Mae's. His suggestion shocked her. Elayne had her mind so muddled in war that she hadn't thought about what came *after*. She worried that her mind would crack and break as soon as she wasn't fighting and numbing herself. As she passed his ice cream back to him, she let her fingers brush over his hand. "I'd like that. There's plenty of real estate. It's so fresh here. Shit knows I ain't going back to Polis Massa after the war. Where were you located before all of this?"

Walking down memory lane was difficult when the memories were so painful. "I'm from Fest," Dillon said, the very mention of the planet should have carried weight due to its early role in the Rebellion and the punitive strikes it endured. "In those early days we all thought we were such hot shit," he said, before taking another spoonful of ice cream. "But the truth is we didn't know anything. We were just a glorified planetary security force ... we had no business doing battle with the Empire," he explained to her, with bitterness and resentment. "Most of the people I flew with back then are gone now. I have no desire to return and rebuild. The memories are still raw," he reasoned with her, as he played with the ice cream in the bowl rather than ate it.

"Fest." She repeated. All he needed to do was say one word. Fest had suffered between the civil war amongst its inhabitants and the war against Mantooine. It wasn't a planet she had ever stepped foot on. It was now an Imperial mess. She felt sad for Dillon. She also felt connected to him. He had endured so much. Elayne left her hand on his. "That's a mistake more planets that just Fest made. I'm sorry, Dillon. You carry those people's lives on your back and you're doing them justice." She had no idea who would win this war. The Empire was an expansive enemy with infinite resources. She didn't want him to feel down. Since neither pilot was interested in their ice cream anymore, she chucked what was left in her bowl and stood. "Why don't we go look around and find a place we can build *up*?" She offered him her small hand.

"It won't look like a layer cake will it?" Dillon asked her, as he finished the last bit of ice cream and rose back to his feet, taking her hand. "Sure. Lead on," he said to her, as they cleared out of Auntie Mae's where a considerable line had formed. "Do you have any nieces of nephews? Are you an Auntie Elayne?" he asked her, as he moved forward down the main street of New Aldera. He was really beginning to imagine him and Elayne moving into a home here, far from the turmoil that seemed to constantly soak up the rest of the galaxy.

She snickered. "I was imagining a gigantic loth-cat house. I don't like sweets nearly as much as Xergo's little girl." Elayne played with him. New Alderaan was shaping up nicely. It had been some time since she had visited. Last time, she passed out drunk on Mug's couch after bringing his wife home. This time felt like a vacation. She was headed towards the residential area, but she was taking her time. She browsed the new shops and restaurants while beginning to open up to Dillon about her life. Her head shook, blue hair moving with it. "Not that I'm aware of. I left my mother on Polis Massa when I was fourteen. I had no other siblings at that time. My father was some bastard junkie. My mom wasn't horrible or anything. She forgot to take her pill and viola, there was an Elayne. Amazing how that works, hm?" Neglect had given her a chance to fall in love with the stars. She became an adrenaline junkie from that first time in a cockpit. "What about you? Is there any family left I should worry about meeting? I don't really have the right mouth to go makin' myself prim and proper for good impressions sake."

"I don't think *anyone* likes sweets as much as Xergo's daughter. That's sure to be a health crisis later in life," Dillon replied, in a rather tasteless joke. "You left home early," he pointed out, as he had stayed in the nest perhaps longer than he should have. "No. You're off the hook in that regard. I was an only child, and my parents did not last long during the resistance on Fest," he informed her, with some sadness. "Don't worry about anyone else. You've made a good impression with me," he told her, as he brought his arm around her, drawing her near to him. He lowered his head and placed a quick kiss upon her lips. Never did he suspect their attendance at the Zoran/Xergo wedding result in them hosuehunting.

Elayne laughed. She had watched Xergo's daughter eat her weight in cake at the wedding. Elayne had kept an eye on her, silently placing bets with herself on how long it would be before the child vomited cake all over the place. It seemed as though they were both loners. He had nothing left either. She neared him. She was sorry for all of his losses. He was a good person. She wished she could have trapped all the people who were special to him in a bubble to save them. Elayne stopped walking to share a quick kiss with him. If she died tomorrow, Dillon's kisses left her with a lifetime of happiness. She was glad he had decided to come with her. The conversations they were having were difficult, but necessary. She continued on until they were in the residential area where houses had been put up. Many were still empty. "What do you want to do after the war, Dillon? Let's say we live in a perfect world. The Rebels actually manage to win this thing. Then what?"

"Well..." Dillon began, unsure of how to broach the subject with her. "I'd like to be a father. I lost my family, so I would like to start a new one," he informed her, with a nod of his head. "As for work I think I'd like to continue flying. In what capacity I don't know, but I couldn't see myself doing anything that didn't involve sitting in a cockpit," he informed her, as he genuinely loved to fly. "How about you?" he asked her, as he brought his hand up to the side of her face, to brush away a loose strand of blue hair. "You almost have the same shade of blue as the Squibs from the wedding," he teased her, before lowering his hand.

This was the first time Elayne had looked at the 'after' life with any sort of positives in her life. The thought of making Dillon a father and becoming a mother at his side was appealing. The young Callista Nilar had been so kind to them at the wedding. It was impossible to be around her and not wonder 'what if..?' She didn't broach the subject of a family at first. Instead, she nodded her head. "Flying is essential. It would be strange to not have that in my life. You get it. It would just be nice to fly without lots of bastards trying to shoot me up." She made a face when he compared her hair to the Squibs. "Awwww. That's the most romantic thing you've ever said to me." Elayne winked. "You're just upset because you couldn't get all the Squib hair off of you clothes after one of them hugged you."

She stopped in front of a home that was still being actively built. She leaned her head to rest it on his shoulder. "I want a family too." She told him, avoiding eye contact. "I'm also scared by the proposition. You...I can tell you'd make a great father. Me? I don't know. I have PTSD. Sometimes it's like there's dynamite shoved deep down in the middle of my noggin', and it goes off and I lose myself. What kind of mother could I be other than terrible? And then there's these legs... I mean, at least my feet won't get swollen when I'm pregnant. Instead of asking you to tie my shoes when I'm too large to reach them, I could just wear boots twenty-four seven." Elayne began exposing the more darker parts of herself to him. If he wanted to hang around...if he wanted to have a family with her...then he deserved to know who she was.

What Elayne told him nearly broke his heart, and he allowed himself to shed a tear for her a they stood in the street. "Elayne ... you'll make a wonderful mother. So far I've seen you excel at everything you've put your mind to," he told her, as he would not allow her to sell herself short. "There's nothing in the guide to being a mother that says you cannot have cybernetic attachments," he told her, as he continued to bolster her. "There's no one in the galaxy I would rather raise a child with than you. So unless you'll agree, I guess I'll never get to fulfill my dream of being a father," he said, before looking down sadly, sliding his hands into his pockets, and kicking some rocks. It was not quite the Rodney pout that had been on full display at the wedding, but the Hobbes mope sure could be effective.

The Major was touched. She had so much self doubt inside of her that had lingered on since the Rebels liberated her two and half years ago. She had begun therapy when she first arrived back, quit it, then tried restarting a year later. It simply didn't seem to help. She had animosity for her lost legs and believed that it would ruin her life until *now*. Her eyes were becoming so hot that tears escaped from them. She quickly wiped them away. The Hobbes mope was, indeed effective. She had watched him passionately talk about wanting to be a father, then she took the possibility and stomped on it. If there was someone who would keep her from flying off the deep end and messing up as a parent, it was Dillon.

Elayne wrapped her arms around his neck. "Oh, come here..." She kissed his forehead. "I'll make you a father, Dillon. Win this stupid war and you can knock me up as many times as you want." She kissed him on the lips. The aspect of becoming a mother was a lot less terrifying when considering that he would be there. "You'll fulfill your dream. The question is, is *there* where you want to fulfill it?" She pointed towards a house that was nearly as blue as her hair with a cute white trim. She didn't know if they'd ever live there but she sure liked the fantasy of it.

"Thank you, Elayne. Now was that so hard?" Dillon asked her, as he gratefully accepted her kiss. He turned as she motioned towards the blue house, and smiled at it, before looking back towards her. "I think it was meant to be," he told her, before taking her by the hand and beginning to lead her towards their new house. "Well we're going to be property owners," he told her, as he squeezed her hand, once they arrived at the exterior of the house. He could already hear the sound of a child's laughter. This was going to be their forever home.

"Yes!" She exclaimed with a smile on her face. They were planning a future. In the back of her mind, she wondered if they were jinxing each other. She had a mindset where she lived day by day and didn't look much past tomorrow. Now, she was considering what could happen years from now. Children. A husband. A home. Somewhere she belonged. "That's just as serious as going steady." Elayne commented with a playful snort. Together, they entered their dream home for the very first time. She stood in the foyer, immediately struck by emotion. She was transported to a world where the 'what ifs' had come true. Dillon was standing in the living room with a child hoisted up into the air, playing a starship game together. She even saw herself smiling like never before. Elayne's heart skipped a beat. This was it. This was home. "I've always wanted a blue house." She told him, placing a hand on the wall for support. This was made to be their forever home.

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