Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
Zero years after the Battle of Yavin (35:9:17) in the Alderaan system: Delaya (Leiliani: Rodney Castle).
Lord Marcus Rodney and Zara Ta'em.

While the transport full of food had arrived successfully on Delaya, the initial exuberance was replaced with questions about how to distribute it. There were some who argued that it should be shared equally among the population, while others lobbied strongly in support of a 'Delaya first' policy that gave the majority to the natives. For Marcus, being the second born son of the Duke, the matter was out of his purview and his attention had focused on Zara. Never before had a woman managed to stay in his life for so long, and she had already exceeded the previous record holder, who had only managed to stay for six hours because she had gotten lost in the confusing labyrinth of the castle grounds. While the citizens of Leiliani dined of rations, Marcus had set a formal table on the balcony, which overlooked the vast, snowcapped mountain ranges the castle had been constructed upon millennia ago to literally and figuratively look down upon the ordinary denizens. His armor was gone ... securely in storage ... and instead he wore a very formal attire of a tunic and trousers that had been crafted by the finest artisans on Alderaan before the planet's destruction. The best contents of the crates of food had been meticulously prepared and served upon the small bistro table, with only two settings, and as he gazed upon the mountains he realized that Zara's beauty had eclipsed them ... and that meant he was in serious, serious trouble.

You really couldn't ever please everyone, could you? Zara witnessed that much first hand when they delivered the transport of food. The hungry Delayans changed the toots of their horns. Now that there was food, they wanted to fight over the details. Who would get what? How did you judge how much food a single person received? Needless to say, Zara was happy to hide away with Marcus inside the depths of his castle. She didn't know how to deal with political shit. After all, she was merely the daughter of an Alderaan rebel. She had never expected to be in a situation like this. It wasn't just Marcus' status, but Marcus himself. Wasn't she supposed to be a forever alone? Thieving wasn't supposed to coincide with romance, yet Zara found herself tangled in it worse than my Ipod headphones in my purse.

After a short visit to the closet, she retreated into the bathroom to pretty herself up for dinner. Like any other woman, she liked dolling herself up on occasion. She didn't spend an irrational amount of time, nor did she apply so much makeup that her natural beauty was lost. Instead, she hung up casual clothing for a pretty little black dress. It had a plunging that inspired interest without giving away all the details. She pulled her silver hair into a simplistic updo.

Zara appeared at the table shortly after fiddling with her appearance in the bathroom. She sat directly across from him. Bright, blue eyes took in the view of the snow capped mountain range. She hadn't had time to appreciate Delaya's beauty. Before meeting Marcus, she had never traveled here. A sly smile crossed her lips. "This is nice. Me. You. Food. Alone." She reached across the table. Her hand rested on top of his. Her fingers brushed over it slowly. "You look handsome tonight. Who are you trying to show off for?" Her smile grew. He thought he was in trouble? Somehow, Zara had fallen ass-backwards into *living* with him. It was a subject she feared broaching. Her ship...her *home* was gone. As much as she wished she could read his mind, she couldn't. She was waiting for him to suggest she leave even though he hadn't. Secretly, Zara wanted to *stay*.

"And remain alone, we shall," Marcus said to her, politely, as he gazed longingly across the table, becoming lost in her eyes as if they were a black hole threatening to draw him into the unknown for all time. "I've ordered no interruptions. I've electronically and mechanically locked the doors. And I've made sure that meddlesome guard was placed off duty," he said with a smile, as he reached down for the bottle of wine that they had smuggled off Coruscant. He poured himself a sample first ... just to make sure it had not turned ... before offering her a full glass of her own. "I swear I'm not trying to show off. This is my normal attire..." he said, as he poured himself a glass as well, before placing the bottle back on the table. "...being *noble* and all," he added, with a sharp wink of his left eye, before taking a long sip from the glass. It felt wonderful to spend time with someone consistently rather than engaging in a torrent of one night stands. A soft spring breeze rippled through the still of the night, caressing his cheek, and cooling the skin that she had caused to burn with an unrelenting passion.

The man knew how to please. Zara felt more and more happy as he explained all the precautions he'd taken to keeping the evening made for two. She chuckled at the mention of her least favorite guard. "All for little ol' me?" Her fingers weaved in between his shortly. Touching him made her feel so *electric* inside. From that first drunk, insane evening, something had been there. "Thank you, Marcus. We needed a night off. Besides, I owe you a back rub for being such a trooper." Her hand didn't leave his until he poured her a glass of wine and offered it to her. Her hand slowly slid away from his. She took it, "Speaking of that *noble* situation..."

She took a slow sip from her glass. Zara was a light weight. She was avoiding the day that Marcus actually realized how easily she got drunk. The woman was determined to have a good evening that didn't place her in the bathroom, clinging to the toilet seat for dear life. "We have this reverse Lady and the Tramp thing going on here. Should I feel bad about that? Because I really don't." She picked at her food. Zara loved his companionship. She had been alone for so long. No one ever interested her. She'd met her fair share of men in her line of work. None of them were like Marcus. Marcus, who crazily saved her from more than just a fire. She picked up her glass of wine. Zara stood, making her way over to his side of the table. She made herself a new home in his lap sitting sideways with her long, pale legs hanging off of the side of his. She flashed him a pretty grin. "You were too far away." She stated it like it was a matter-of-fact. She abandoned her wine glass on the table. With her hands free, she wrapped both arms around his neck and nuzzled against his chest.

"For *us*," Marcus said, as both a statement and as a toast, before moving to take another swig of his wine. He was happy to have her as dinner company, happier than he felt comfortable admitting to her. He reacted with surprise when she moved towards him, approaching almost like a predator, but he provided no obstacle to her in terms of letting her sit upon his lap. He sighed contently as her rear made contact with his lap, and his arms instinctively moved around her waist to embrace her, and keep her from awkwardly falling from his lap to the floor below. "I see you're a woman who likes to move straight to dessert," he mused, before raising one of his hands to angle her chin up to offer him a better view of her lovely face. "I'll never be far," he vowed to her, before allowing his head to descend haplessly towards her. His brown eyes closed slowly, just as his lips made firm contact with hers. There was pressure at first, but that soon relented as his tongue moved from between his lungs in a swift attack at her outer defenses. He was through the blast doors, he thought to himself, as his tongue slid between her perfect teeth and moved to massage at her tongue and the roof of her mouth. When he withdrew, he opened his eyes to look down at her, longingly, but this lasted for only an instant before he made his second attack run. This time, rather than a kiss, he bit down playful on her lower lip ... to weaken her defenses.

*For us*... That was something Zara could toast to. By nature, the woman was a predator. She liked the thrill ... not to mention the credits ... of being a thief. Her life consisted of improving her ability to fool people, yet today she was fooling no one. The woman wasn't even armed. She was as physically defenseless as she was mentally, emotionally. Something was happening here that she couldn't stop. His arms kept her secure to his body. They allowed her to relax more. "I can't help it. I adore sweets..." Her fingers toyed along the back of his neck and into his hair. Her face pressed against his hand. Zara didn't know what he had that no one else did. Watching her family die, it was realistic for her to feel paranoid and afraid. With Marcus, those fears didn't exist. He was one-hundred percent on Team Ta'em. His vow was enough to break her sturdy body in half. She looked touched just before her eyes closed and the kiss began. She hoped that someday...*someday* he'd pledge that vow to her as they married. In her heart, she knew the same was true for her. Her jobs weren't going to be solo anymore. Her life wasn't going to be solo.

Her lips kissed him back lovingly. She seemed shy at first. It was like the last wall holding her back from blindly diving into this fell. As it fell, her passion rose, as did the heat of the kiss. Her tongue met with his for inspection just inside those blaster doors. The tip of her tongue rolled down his like she was searching for weapons or any indicator that he was a danger to her. "*Mmm...*" As he withdrew, her eyes opened. She wanted seconds. She wanted thirds, fourths, and fifths. Instead, he started working on more of her inner defense. Want and need began to take over her. Her lip quivered underneath his teeth, just as her body did against his. "I think I'm not the only one with a needy sweet tooth.." She whispered to him. Zara's hands gravitated from his neck back down to his shoulder. Her fingers softly massaged him there. "Will you really never be far?" She asked him, sounding serious. "I don't want you to be far." Weakened her defenses he did.

"*Never*," Marcus said emphatically, as his eyes locked on her with a seriousness he had never before displayed. Over the years he had fed women all sorts of lies to get them into bed, but never to wed. Marriage had been something that had been forced upon his older brother ... almost to comedic effect ... but nothing that no one had ever seemed to care about in regards to him. He was a spare, and his brother began to have children, he became even more superfluous and of no use to anyone politically. That gave him the freedom to engage in bounty hunting when it suited him, to cure the boredom of being an idle noble ... and more importantly the freedom of choosing his own woman. Certainly no one could object to him picking her as it was not a matter of state and she certainly cleaned up well, which was really all that mattered in the superficial circles of high society. For the first time he was beginning to look at her as the possible of something more ... something *permanent* ... and with that thought his face began to descend towards hers again, pressing his lips to the side of her face, and then slowly down an erratic, feverish line, that led to her neck. One of his free hands began to work its way up to her silver hair, her most distinct feature, and he loving stroked it, allowing his fingers to become lost and caught up in the soft fibers. He sighed contently against the base of her neck, going weak in her arms, and feeling an unfamiliar feeling that had escaped him since youth. It was *love*.

If it was truly possible to melt her with a single word, he'd done it. Zara was going to become a little puddle of happiness on the ground. She even made a noise...a little pleased squeak which she quickly covered up with affection. Zara was big. She was bad! She was meannnn! She didn't make noises... Not. She didn't know how the whole meeting the family thing would go with Marcus. It was questionable what people would think of him being with a girl who had no nobility. Did she care? No. What she cared about right now was making him feel good. *Happy*. Her eyes slowly closed thanks to the pleasantness of his lips on her face. She turned her face to the side. Her eyes closed to savor every feverish kiss that drew her closer to the edge. "Marcus..." His name slipped from her lips sweetly. Her body shifted in his lap. Zara felt relaxed, yet wild all at the same time. Everything he did to her riled her up. It was no longer a working solution to be dressed on the balcony. She yearned to be close to him...closer than this. Her chin rested on top of his head. Both of her arms wrapped around him. The hold was protective, loving. She would be good to him.

"Let's go inside.." She whispered into his ear. It took time to untangle herself from him. She was reluctant to move from her new favorite spot. When she did reach her feet, she took his hand and guided him to his own. Zara led the way a couple steps in front of him. Her dress flattered her form, especially her backside. The dress had an open back. A vast land of pale, soft skin faced him until she stopped at the end of the bed. She didn't bother closing the balcony doors. Feeling playfully, she happily pushed him down onto the bed. She stepped out of her shoes. A single hand reached behind her head. She pulled her hair free from it's do, what was left up anyway. For now, she remained clothed. She joined him on the bed, climbing up the length of his body until she settled into his torso and painted his neck with slow, soft kisses.

A woman had never led him before ... he had always been the aggressor ... but there was something about her willingness to take charge in the bedroom that he found remarkably refreshing. She was a decided change from the parade of young women that had preceded her into his bed and that, above all else, was what kept him wrapped in her embrace. "Yes. It's much warmer ... *inside*," he said, playfully, his voice accentuating the double entendre to make it clear he was not talking about the room. When they settled into the bed he was quick to remove his tunic, casting the expensive, hand loomed garment to the floor for the staff to deal with later ... much later. The chest that was revealed below was kept in good condition, but there would be always be scars and burns from his double life as a bounty hunter that he could not cover up. Each blemish told a story, but the ones he were the most proud of were the ones he had gotten protecting her. He squirmed beneath her, as her pressure that he felt against him caused his lust to surge, waiting to make his move. When he could finally no longer stand it he moved to his hand to the back of her neck and with the skills of an expert surgeon in one fluid motion the string that held the dress up was undone, causing it to fall down, exposing her chest. "Whoops!" he said playfully, as a gust of wind conveniently swept into the room, causing several bumps to appear momentarily upon his skin.

She liked to think of herself as different from the other bimbos though she was only twenty-three ... her birthday was around the corner! Zara had always been taught to work hard for the things she wanted. That applied to more than thieving. On the way into their bedroom, he made her laugh with his silly double entendre. "It will be.. once you get there." They both knew where the evening was heading. That became especially true when Zara decided she wasn't going to stop being close. She was happy to see him rid himself of his tunic. His torso was exposed to her. It certainly didn't look like it belonged to a nobleman who rarely was involved in dirty work. This was the body of a bounty hunter, and a man who had seen his fair share. She loved it. She loved every mark that could be considered an imperfection. The burns he bore would forever be a reminder of what was there before either one of them realized it: love.

While she was preoccupied with his neck, he was working to free her from her dress. Thanks to its built in bra, when it slid down, her plump breasts were revealed. A playful, stern look took her face. "Did you do that on purpose?" She snickered. The sudden gust of wind made her body react. Goosebumps burst out over her exposed back. Her nipples went from soft to hard in seconds. "That was just rude!" Her teeth sunk into his neck softly. She released right afterward, rising back to her feet. She wiggled her hips back and forth to aid her dress in sliding down, and eventually off, her petite body. Like him, there were scars. There was evidence that she lived a tough life. Thankfully, he'd fed her self esteem. She felt fearless and sexy...two things that are dangerous for a woman to feel in the bedroom. The only piece of clothing that separated them at that point was a tiny pair of red panties. As much as she wanted to join him again, she didn't. Instead, she leaned over him. Her finger tips sunk beneath his trousers. She brought them down further and further until they were gone. "Whoops!" She mimicked, throwing them on the ground hazardously. Pleased with her work, Zara climb back on top of him. She sat upright on him. She looked happy with herself.

"Oh look what you've gone and done!" Marcus said in a mocked panic, as his trousers were so carelessly pulled from him his form, revealing more marks that looked like a desolate moon that had been impacted by meteors for millennia. Red, he thought to himself, as he looked at the panties that covered what was left ... barely ... that told him so much about her, without her having to say a word. Speech was something that was beginning to escape him, as he felt his mouth begin to water in anticipation of the nightly delights that were about to come. His heart was beginning to race and a color of red came to his skin that would reveal just how aroused he had become, as if to say to the throbbing member that was causing a tent, reminiscent of his teenage days, in the boxer shorts that she had left on him. He looked at her for much longer than he should have, given that situation, as he reached forward, pulling her down from her seated position. One of his hands moved down her back to rest playfully on her butt, kneading it as if he was attempting to soften some dough to bake bread. His other hand moved to the back of her head, once again making a mess of that silver hair ... a color he had never seen before. His head moved up from the bed, placing a series of kisses upon her face, lustfully attacking her lips and as if he was attempting to devour her. "Zara..." he murmured, breathing heavily, almost panting, as he instinctively bucked his hips to thrust up at her, the centimeters of fabric the only thing keeping him from splitting her in two. Any other woman he would have just taken, finished quickly, and then moved on to either a nap or a sandwich, but with her, he wanted to wait, he wanted to go slow, and he wanted her to be an active participant rather than an idle body.

Zara wouldn't have it any other way. She liked participating with him, rather than laying on the bed like a lifeless corpse and making minimal attempts to be sexy. "I knowww, I'm so horrible. First I take your precious trinket, then I ruin your back.. and now the pants. Tsk, tsk. I'm one bad lady." Seated on top of him, Zara shook her head in disappointment. The smile on her face clearly showed that she wasn't upset in the slightest. Her needs were scratching at her patience again. Now that they were down to only their underwear, Zara *really* felt his arousal. With her legs straddling his, her crotch had been forced right against the tent in his boxer shorts. Her body felt so hot. He brought her down to lay on him just as she considered pulling off his boxers. His hands stopped her. Sensations rolled down his spine while his hand made its way down her back to her tight, firm rear. His kneading caused her to moan. "Oooh, Marcus, that feels sogood." She was nearly purring at this point. Zara had quickly lost her control.

As if the kneading wasn't enough, he had to push her all the way. His hands in her hair, his hips forcing their crotches to grind together. She had savored every second of being with him as much as she could. However, she could wait no more. He needed to be inside of her. He just *needed* to. She groaned. "Ohmygosh, Icantwait." Zara wasn't willing to let them part again. She lifted her hips from his. Using one hand, she worked off her panties roughly at the speed of a turtle. She ended up wiggling her hips until they began descending down her legs. Finally, she was free. Despite hard work, Zara's body was generally soft. She maintained being very feminine. She was shaven everywhere she should be—that included between her legs. She was already so hot and wet for him. Her body silently begged for him to take her. And so, she did not stop there. Both hands pulled down his boxers quickly. It showcased how needy she was feeling when she disposed of the final piece of clothing separating them. Nude, Zara grinned widely. "You're so sexy, my love."

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Bliss filled the bedroom. When it seemed like nothing could get better, everything did all at once. On the receiving end of his orgasm, Zara's mind was blown. She could feel him swell just before unloading directly into her womb. Zara was crying louder. Her hands, newly freed, clung to the bed sheets. Each pulse made her cry louder. Meanwhile, nature had found a way. Zara was a young, healthy woman. She was fertile and probably should have been on some form of birth control. It goes to show how inactive she had been sexually that she wasn't. Her body took advantage of the situation. While she lay on the bed beneath him, panting and gasping, her egg was fertilized. In a month's time, we would all see Zara loose a portion of her mind trying to figure out how he would react.

She was riding high on pleasure and satisfaction. She snuggled against his bare body until she could breath properly again. "Holy shit..." She laughed softly, "You're amazing.." Zara playfully rolled the two of them until Marcus was laying on his back and she had left his arms. In the dim lit room, it was possible to see the bruises on her neck. She shifted to retrieve a box of cigarras she had placed in the night side drawer, knowing full well that this would happen eventually. There were bruises on her rear too. She grabbed the pack as well as a lighter. She settled beside him. She stayed seated, plucking out a single cigarra. She tossed the rest of the back pack into the drawer, lit the cigarras, then threw the lighter in the drawer also. Her free hand ran through his hair. She took her first drag off of the cigarra, exhaling into the room. "I bet all the maids think something violent happened in our room. I was screaming pretty loud." She laughed at the thought. No one would want to clean up in here tomorrow.

Marcus lay there for a moment, his eyes closed, and a dumb, post-orgasmic grin plastered upon his face. He said nothing as he felt the chemicals fill his brain, causing him to enter a state of relaxation that threatened to him cause him to fall asleep at that very moment. He was very nearly gone when she moved to get her cigarra and the flash of light combined with the sudden change of smells began to arouse him from his rest. "Mmm," he sighed contently as she stroked his head, his brown eyes rolling over towards her happily. "Zara..." he said, as he watched her smoke, realizing that it was possible for her to be even more exotic and alluring than he could have previously believed. He was unable to finish his statement ... he knew what he wanted to say, but it was something he had never said before. He rolled over onto his side, placing his hand upon her thigh to caress her, not wanting to be without physical contact for even a moment. "Zara ... I love you," he said to her after another pause, revealing the feelings that had built up inside of him and now finally been brought out of him by their impassioned lovemaking. He had wanted to possess her, but in this moment of naked vulnerability where his mind was a swirl of emotions it was she that possessed him.

He wasn't the only one feeling the pull to go to sleep. Zara knew she wouldn't last much longer. Their sex, and all the wonderful emotions that came with it, had tuckered her out. She looked forward to being his nude little spoon and falling asleep in pure bliss. Her cigarra smelled like a sweet cherry. Like she said, she liked her sweets! Her eyes didn't leave him. "Marcus.." She purred. Her fingers continued to work through his hair in that slow, gentle manner. Her emotions were running high. Now, more than ever before, she realized how badly she wanted to stay with stay here. She didn't see her time with Marcus as being anything but long term. She was aware of how she felt. Telling him was the hard part. She couldn't hack into Marcus' brain to determine how he felt about everything. It was he who made the plunge first. She was smiling, watching his hand move up and down her thigh when he revealed his true feelings to her.

Zara's smile was suddenly so much bigger. She didn't need to think about her response. It came out immediately. "I love you too, my Marcus. With all of my heart." She leaned downward. Her lips grazed his in a tease of a kiss. She withdrew, quickly dragging a few more times on her cigarra before putting it out. A revelation like that called for her undivided attention. She sunk into the bed. Her arms wrapped around him. She kissed him again, only this kiss was full and passionate. She held nothing back from the most important man in the galaxy.

There was a closeness between him he never expected he'd be able to experience with another person. He had worked so hard to keep up his defenses ... to push everyone away that had gotten close ... but not *her*. "I never thought I would feel this way, Zara," he said, as he leaned his face forward to place tender, lasting kisses upon her smoky lips. His hand moved over her stomach, unaware that his unborn child was in the process of developing within, a combination of all of the best parts of their DNA. "I love you," he repeated, just so he could hear himself say it again, as if to make it more true. "I love you, I love you, I love you," he repeated, as if he were in a chorus, wishing to want to say it so much since he had never before been able to say it. His arms moved around her, drawing her close to him, his heart beating against hers with nothing but love and bliss. She had started by stealing his watch ... now she had stolen his art.

He wasn't alone. As much as Zara wanted a good relationship in her life, the opportunity simply never arose. Too many men made her feel like she needed to be something else. She thought that having a secondary secret identity as a thief would cause problems too. How many times can you explain absence to your loved one before they believe you're seeing someone else? Marcus already knew those details. He had done nothing to strive to change her. Hell, this man even thought she looked sexy in a boiler suit. That was true love. Zara was swept up in the moment. She felt so soft. "I didn't either. Now that you do feel this way, I promise I'll treat your heart right. You won't regret sharing it with me." Her hand ran over his cheek slowly. Her heart fluttered while they kissed each other. There was nothing malicious or evil about their love, it was just good. Zara liked it a lot when his hand rest on her flat stomach. She'd like it a lot more in a few months when it began to be evident that she was pregnant. "I love you," she replied, "I love you, I love you, I love you." She said the words back to them each time he spoke them to her. He filled her with happiness and something more. The woman inched closer to him until there was no room between them. Her body laced around his until they were stuck together. She placed a soft kiss on his nose. "Just wait, I'm going to make you Mister Zara Ta'em someday." Oooh, she tried to keep a straight face when she said it. She tried! Ultimately, Zara burst out laughing. "Maybe Misses Zara Rodney? What do you think? Marcus Ta'em does have a nice ring to it." Giggle.

Marcus smiled happily as he listed to her pillow talk, but when she turned the subject of marriage ... even playfully ... his face began to change. Was she ready that soon? he thought to himself silently, as he studied her features a little more carefully than he ever did before. Was this the woman who he wanted to share not just his bed, but also his life for the remainder of it? He was surprised to find, after how briefly he had known her, that the answer was yes. But he would not formally ask her yet ... not like this ... it would call for something more elaborate as was his nature. "None of the above," he said, feigning disapproval, but in reality it was very hard for him to keep smiling as he dreamed about their union. "*Lady* Zara Rodney," he said, putting emphasis on the noble title that would forever proceed their name, to remind her of his lot in life. "How would that suit you ... Milady," he said teasingly, before moving his hands over the entirely of her body in order to find her sensitive spots and attempt to learn if she were ticklish.

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