Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
Zero years after the Battle of Yavin (35:10:22) in the Alderaan system: Delaya (Marcus Rodney's chalet).
Lord Marcus Rodney and Lady Zara Rodney.

A light rain fell upon the chalet in the northernmost region of Delaya where Marcus and Zara had taken up residence in seclusion from his wicked and manipulative family. Marcus stood in the nursery on the second floor that the two of them had been painstakingly working on together. The walls had been painted a light shade of blue, the traditional color for an expected newborn son, and the crib had finally been assembled to perfection. Other pieces of furniture she had selected had been carefully brought to their home and constructed with considerably more hardship than the crib ... which he would have thought impossible. As he took a sip of his hot chocolate and examined his surroundings, he felt incredibly proud. He had made the right decision. They had been monitoring the holonet in the event that his father did pass away, but it was no longer a priority, and it no longer overwhelmed their marriage. He had charted a course with her to the future, leaving his complicated past long behind.

It was over. Finally, Zara felt like she could breathe again without the Duke and Duchess looming over them. The future of their son was no longer tied up in becoming the future of Delaya. Instead, the possibilities were endless for Darrus...exactly as she had hoped for. The teenager quickly began to settle. Her stomach had been at ease over the past few days. She was enjoying her pregnancy, her married, and life in general. She had to admit, it was *really* nice not to be vomiting mess anymore.

She was perched on the window seat in their bedroom, looking out over her favorite place to be. Instead of diving into making trouble on the Holonet, today she was drawing. It was an old favorite pass-time that had gotten hung up when she decided her life revolved around thieving and nothing else. As guilty as she had felt when they left the Rodney castle, she felt better about the decision now. There had been no repercussions from Marcus. He really did seem happy. Speaking of which..!

Leaving her belongings spread out on the window seat, Zara rose and drifted from their bedroom. It didn't take her long to find Marcus, as he wasn't the only one who was in awe of what they'd done. The nursery looked so cute! Every time she saw it, it made her less patient for the arrival of their son. The silver-haired girl appeared in the doorway. She looked so much better than she had in weeks. Her skin was glowing, as was the wide smile on her face. "Amazing, isn't it?" She leaned into the doorway. "Remember when we first arrived here? It's hard to imagine this place used to be a big iceberg."

Marcus turned his head towards her slowly, revealing a warm smile upon his face that seemed the most bright whenever she was near. "You are young. It is possible we may have many children. We might have to build an extension," he said, before taking a large sip of the hot chocolate from his mug. "The rain just doesn't want to let up," he commented, as he moved forward towards his wife. "How are you feeling this morning? Still getting sick?" he asked, before moving his hand towards her, placing it upon her stomach. He rubbed the nesting ground of his son affectionately, all the while looking at her with his dark brown eyes. There was no time and no place than he would rather be than right here, right now with Zara.

Zara snickered. She really couldn't resist teasing her husband. "Mmmhmm. The first bun isn't out of the oven yet and you're already talking about more. You must be happy." She stepped forward to aid him in closing the distance between them. Her hand swept over his shoulder. She didn't oppose the idea of a large family or having to add onto their home someday. Only time would tell though, huh? "I'm actually feeling a lot better today. My stomach feels so normal that it's weird. Everything I ate had stayed in my stomach for the past twelve hours. It's been awhile since I've been able to say that." Though she didn't enjoy the sick portion of pregnancy, she didn't really complain about it either. If that was the only price she had to pay for their son, then so be it. "How are you?" She looked into his in a serious tone. He'd just gone through so much. Zara worried about him. She giggled when he touched her growing tummy. "It's way too satisfying when you do that.." She stepped closer to him so her arms could loosely wrap around his waist.

"When I was a boy my grandfather used to take me fishing on a lake near here," Marcus told her, as he began moving her towards the large window where he could show her the terrain. "It's frozen over now, but part of me was wondering if the fish still lived beneath the ice," he told her, as he placed a hand on the small of her back and guided her in front of the window where a light rain continued to fall. "It saddens me how the industrial pollution from down below has caused so much climate change in just my lifetime. This all used to be green," he said to her, his hand instinctively moving to crawl up and down her back in a passionate rub. "That is why we can't grow the food that the people need," he realized, dejectedly, as he lowered his head in shame for the industrialization policies undertaken by his family over the past century.

She moved with him towards the window. It was hard to imagine this place not icy, cold, and barren. She looked over the terrain. It was the first time Marcus had brought up his grandfather as well as the fact that this wasn't always icy. Zara had been very curious. Now she was curious to see what remained of the old lake. Zara turned her head, looking at Marcus as he explained what had happened. All of this was a result of human-made pollution. It was sad...and Zara wasn't going to accept it as the future of their region. "Don't you think the effects could be reversed? I've read a lot about environmental science on the holonet." Because life wasn't nearly as exciting before Marcus. The back rub was exquisite. Zara couldn't help letting out a sigh. "I read about one group that was working on a chemical. When sprayed on damage ground, it basically cleans up the soil and..." Eee. She squirmed under his hands, "...And makes it fertile again. I also saw a droid they are using on Coruscant that floats around and cleans up the pollutants out of the air. It takes all the muck and makes these crazy black it's not like it hurts the economy. They make jewelry with it, so it actually brings in a profit while helping the environment." She kissed his cheek. It wasn't too late to fix the planet.

Marcus took hold of her, and lifted her into the air for a brief instance, before placing her behind down upon the window seat that he imagined one day she'd sit holding their son. They were now at the same eye level, and he positioned himself between her legs, so that he could look her directly in the eyes. "I can not serve my people as Duke, but you make it seem as if I can help them in other ways," he said to her, sweetly, as he listened to her ideas. He could not go more than five minutes without a strong desire to kiss her, and his head swiftly moved towards her once again. He held the back of her head, gently, while his lips once again made loving contact with hers. With the amount of times a day he kissed her, he was amazed their lips were not unbearably chapped. "I could never do it publicly of course," he told her, almost as soon as the kiss broke and his eyes opened. "They would say I was plotting for the throne with goodwill," he laughed, smirking at her, as it seemed he would never be left alone by the media. "We'd have to do it anonymously," he told her, but quickly placed his lips upon hers again before his poor, young wife could be given a chance to respond.

Zara was a problem solver. The Delaya food crisis had been going on for far too long. A true resolution would be beneficial for generations to come. She felt a little silly bringing up what she had read. After all, Zara didn't have a background in science. He made those silly feelings disappear as soon as he plucked her off the floor and into the air. "Weeee!" She squeaked. Seated on the window seat, she happily parted her legs and wrapped them around him like she intended not to let him go for some time. She nodded her head happily, "Mhm. It's entirely possible. I'll look up all that stuff later so we can make a plan of attack." Her light blue eyes stared into his darker ones. *Swoon*. She loved Marcus so much. The man really did deserve a husband of the year award or something. He wasn't the only one who felt needy for their kisses. Her lips pressed into his. Her heart had begun to beat much more rapidly in her chest. When the kiss ended, Zara laughed hard. "You know, your presence on the Holonet wasn't nearly as interesting before you met me. I think we should add taking the throne by goodwill to that list. It'll look great next to our nudey wedding scandal." She was still laughing the second time he kissed her. Her hands moved up to his face and back through his hair. "Take me out to that lake. I want you to see it for the last time as being frozen solid. We're doing this. No one will know we're behind it."

"Fear not, Zara. In a few years Drusilla's scandals were come to the forefront of the HoloNet, and your breasts will become a forgotten sensation, and we will have peace..." Marcus promised her, before helping her down from the window seat he had only just placed her on. "Come. Let's go take a look. If not for your condition I would have suggested ice skating," he added, as he led her down the stairs, always ready to reach out and catch her if it seemed like she might fall. Overprotective much? As he reached the bottom of the stairs, he opened up the coat room and pulled out her winter ensemble, consisting of a fur coat, hat, and mittens. When she was finally done up she looked so incredibly adorable that he was tempted to ravage her before they even made it out of the chalet. Next, he dressed himself in his own winter attire, of a heavy hooded coat and gloves. Fortunately, the light rain had by now subsided and they were able to walk out onto the snow without a downdraft. "It's over here ... I think," he said, as he scanned the ultra white horizon, his hand never leaving hers.

Zara hadn't thought about Drusilla's scandals. She still wasn't entirely sure how Ewwie's shiny attacks weren't constantly being reported. She laughed softly. "Psh, my breasts are unforgettable. Her scandals will just cover them up a little. Did you know that we're the reason Drusilla and Ewwie can't use the HoloNet anymore?" Back on her feet, Zara took one last look at the icy terrain spread out around them. If their intentions actually worked, the land would change so much. It would put Delaya in a much better position. "Don't worry, we'll do that after the baby is born. I've never gone ice skating before. Can I strap a pillow to my rear? I hear falling is the most unpleasant part." She moved down the stairs with him carefully. She enjoyed his overprotective nature. That meant that she always felt protected and safe. It also reminded her that he cared a lot about her. She slid into her comfy fur coat, buttoning up the front as to not expose herself. After wiggling her hands into her gloves and placing her warm hat on her head, she was all set. Ravaging was definitely on the plate for later. If the snow ever did melt, there would be more scandals involving Zara's breasts.

With her hand in his, she headed off into the snow. "When it's not snowy anymore, will you teach me how to fish? I've been such a city girl my whole life. I don't have any of those wilderness skills." It sounded extremely sexy to see Marcus doing manly outdoor things too. Fur was like a bad influence. It turned him on and persuaded her mind to the gutter. "Tell me more about what it used to be like up here. Did you come here often?"

"You mean ... they've seen everything?" Marcus asked, sounding quite horrified at the notion that his nieces had seen him having sex with his wife. His cheeks reddened and he felt quite warm, despite the increase cold that surrounded them. "Of course I'll teach you how to fish," he said, as he felt the ground begin to crack beneath them ... they had found the frozen lake! "Careful," he warned her, holding his hand as they stood upon the ice, which had been covered in a thin layer of snow to conceal it. "Well you're not a city girl anymore. We're about as far from a city as one can be on this planet," he told her, as he moved to stand in front of her, now taking hold of both her hands. "Long ago this was all very green, and the water was a vibrant shade of green. Creatures of every short lined the grass, and the waters were teeming with life. The best of Delaya would come to hunt and to fish and get away from the horrors of the city," he said to her, before moving in for yet another kiss. She looked so adorable in her winter attire that he could not keep his hands off her.

His face looked as red as hers when she had found out. "*Everything*." She confirmed. "I nearly died in the store when she told me. It was great." She idly wondered if they would see Drusilla and Ewwie again, and how embarrassing it would be if they did! The ground beneath her feet felt different. As Marcus soon confirmed, this was the lake. It was frozen over by thick ice. In order to pierce through the ice, they'd need one hell of a tool. There had to be fish beneath the water. There were too many other animals in the general area for there not to be. Zara took both of his hands for added support. She let his words paint pictures of what it had once been like; green, warm, and beautiful in every way. She could imagine all the life that the lake would bring once it wasn't frozen anymore. He inspired her. He made her want to improve their home planet. She had a blissful smile on her face when he kissed her. Zara had the same problem with not being able to keep her hands to herself. Marcus was such a good man. Not a day went by where she didn't feel pride to be his wife. She tipped her head to the side to kiss him passionately. Her arms wrapped around his neck. She nuzzled her warm, curvy little body against his. The wheels in her head were spinning. Surely they were *actually* alone this time.

Marcus stood there silently, simply smiling down at her, when the sound of the ice cracking beneath him grew unsettlingly more loud. Not sure what was happening, he pushed Zara away, just in the nick of time. As the ice cracked a large tentacle emerged from beneath the surface of the exposed water, which quickly wrapped around his leg. "Gaah!" he screamed, as he was pulled down, but he extended his arms in time to grab hold of the ice in front of him. His face smacked into the ice as the creature's tentacle attempted to pull him down, causing him to become a battered mess. "Run Zara!" he pleaded, as he attempted, in vain, to pull himself back onto the surface of the ice. Beneath the water a vicious creature dwelled who had sensed the heat above and rose near the surface to attack the unsuspecting prey. It had been years since the creature had a warm meal ... not since the ice became permanent year 'round.

Rude, rude, *rude*! Zara's little magical ice moment came to a halt over one sound; cracking ice. No sooner had she heard it, was Marcus pushing her out of harm's way. She hit the ice, confused and dazed for seconds before she saw the massive tentacle making its way out from the cracked ice. *Oh my*. If the tentacles of the creature were that big, then she didn't want to see how big its mouth was. Zara's heart was in her throat. Her face was whiter than the snow. It was after Marcus! Her brain came to a crashing, sudden stop. What did she do?! He yelled at her to run while the beast focused on him. Her legs didn't work. Nothing seemed to be working. All of a sudden, she came back to life. Zara rose to her feet rapidly with her hands digging into the pockets of her big, fur coat. "Ohpleaseohpleaseohplease." She said breathlessly, her right hand brushing against a small blaster pistol. It was not going to be enough to kill something of that size. Zara was going to piss the giant off, but she was also going to save her husband, damn it! She fired off several blasts at the tentacle that threatened to take him down past the ice. She ran *towards* him, kneeling down on the ice to collect her battered love. The injured tentacle withdrew into the water, but another rose up right afterward. It crashed down three feet from the couple, severing the ice that they were on. The remainder of the lake's ice had cracks all over it. The entire structure was compromised. "Marcus! Are you okay!?"

Although Marcus had been temporarily saved from the grasp of the creature from beneath the depths, they were in even greater peril as the ice around them began to crack. They soon found themselves floating on an iceberg in the lake, with the creature's tentacles constantly breaching the surface to probe for them. Marcus sat on the ice, weakened by the effects of being submerged in the cold water for even that short of time. "We've got to get out of here!" he pleaded with Zara, stating the obvious, as he looked at the distance between their ice flow and the others, mentally debating whether or not it was short enough for them to jump.

The situation had gone from bad to worse. Zara huddled close to her soaked husband. She didn't think twice about shedding her coat. She wrapped him up in it as best as she could. She didn't say anything about being cold. Her body was still hidden in a long-sleeved shirt and a pair of thick pants. She worked out a plan in her head while looking at the pieces of ice. "*Fuck*!" Another tentacle shot up into the sky from the ice. It threatened to drop on their chunk of ice. Zara managed to shoot off another round rapidly. One of her hands was clinging to Marcus' back. It quickly moved into his hand. The pain caused by the blaster fire was enough to divert the tentacle's fall. Instead of falling on them, it fell into the water right beside the hunk of ice. The force of the shifting water sent the ice pivoting forward towards another, less damaged, part of the lake. As soon as the two pieces collided, water seemed to explode all around them. There was no time left to lose! Zara rose to her feet. "Run, run, run!"

Marcus rose to his feet as well, quite impressed by the exploits his wife had undertaken in an attempt to save both of their lives. He took her by the hand because he knew no woman could run less a man was holding her hand, and then surged forward with her to jump from their ice flow onto the more stable ice it collided with. "Well that never happened when my grandfather took me fishing," he said, as he turned to hold Zara delicately, moving them away from the edge of the ice where the creature could no longer get them. "This area has been allowed to get too wild. The creatures have taken it back," he said, as he placed the fur coat back around her. The delicate garment cost nearly as much as the chalet and he could not allow it to sink beneath the icy waters of the frozen lake.

Was her escape plan going to actually work? She had no idea. Her heart was thumping rapidly in her chest. Adrenaline poured into her brain. It kept her leveled-headed when she needed to be. By some strain of good luck, Zara and Marcus managed to make the jump and reach safer ground together. "Good." She huffed, "Because I don't wanna fish if it's going to be like that!" The thief struggled to catch her breath while he placed her coat back around her. She wanted to object even if she was getting cold. Instead, she took his hand and started leading him back home. She'd make sure he was nice and warm soon enough. "We have to do something about it. Sir Tentacles is not an acceptable pet. He's not trainable at all..." It was a dry joke since she was terrified of the monster. "Are you okay, Marcus?"

Marcus was shivering from the cold. The dampness that was upon him was starting to freeze, and his pants were slowly becoming icy. He wrapped his arms around her lovingly, but also to claim some of her much needed body heat. "We should ... we should get back inside," he suggested, through chattering teeth. He was nearly at the entrance to the house, when he suddenly fell to his knees. "So cold..." he said weakly, far from the fearsome bounty hunter she had originally met. He tried his best to move, but the ice on his trousers began to adhere to the frozen ground, making it almost impossible for him to move. "No. I'm not okay," he ultimately confided in her, as he reached out desperately for the door of the chalet, which was now only a few meters from them.

Nuuu! Zara was trying to hurry them along as much as she could. He was shivering, literally *freezing*. She did what she could to share her body warm with him. "We'll be home soon," she promised quietly. The chalet was in view. It came closer and closer...and..! Beside her, Marcus fell to the ground. She immediately stopped to try to pull him back to his feet only to come to the realization that his bottoms were freezing to the ground! In the back of her head, she had begun to panic. "I'm going to make you okay!" She shouted, opening up the door into the chalet. Silver strands of her hair disappeared with Zara as she ran inside. What did she do? She grabbed a god damn vibroblade. Like a little savage, Zara cut his pants off of him where they were stuck to the ground. She gathered him up, quickly ushering him into the house. Instead of urging him up the stairs, she deposited him in a downstairs bathroom where she wrapped him up in towels and drew him a warm bath. While the tub filled, she held him to her warm body.

When the pants were removed the full effect of what had transpired would come into Zara's view. There were dark red circles all across his leg where the creature had grabbed hold of him, leaving behind the horrible, painful blemishes. He was becoming delirious at the onset of hypothermia, clinging to his wife for dear life ... the woman he pledged himself to take care of was now having to care for him. He looked at her through his droopy eyelids, trying to mouth to her how much he loved her, but his blue lips could barely open enough for him to speak. The hot bath was much needed in the efforts to revive the man who nearly became a frozen dinner with the creature in the lake.

Oooh god. Zara didn't know how to deal with this situation. She saw the red circles the creature had left behind. By now, she knew that Marcus was prone to danger and kept a gracious first aid supply. Her brain was disconnected and disoriented. Hypothermia ... how did she fix it? Hypothermia... Hypothermia...ah!! No water! "Stay with me!" She warned. Her foot carelessly turned off the water on her way out of the bathroom with her husband in tow. With a damn massive amount of energy, the teenager dragged her husband up the stairs. His injuries required her attention, but right now, his body temperature mattered the most. She brought him into their bedroom. She wasn't thinking anymore, she was simply acting. Her actions required cutting off the remainder of his frozen clothing as quickly as she could. In record time, which was saying something, Zara had him nude and beneath the layers upon layers of blankets. "Marcus?!" She stripped down until her clothing was a heap at her feet. She dove into the bed like an Olympic swimmer. Her arms locked around his cold body. She drew him in. Her body was so much warmer than his. She shivered at the feeling of his flesh.

It seemed that without Zara, Marcus would have died a thousand times by now. He was in no position to help her in her efforts to save him, and allowed his body to be carried by her to the bedroom. It was getting very difficult to keep his eyes open, as she piled on blanket after blanket upon him. Where did she get so many blankets? Did she go on a Drusilla-like shopping spree at the blanket emporium while he was not paying attention? Gradually his body temperature began to rise as he was thoroughly insulated, but when her own body appeared next to her that's when things really started to heat up. He was far too frozen for anything to develop, but he did offer her a weak smile as they entered a warm embrace between the umpteenth layers of blankets that covered them.

You could *never* have enough blankets! If the massive mound of blankets helped warm Marcus up, then they were worth it. With her arms locked around his neck, Zara offered him all of the warmth he had. If he didn't remember, it was he who saved her first. If he hadn't pushed her out of the way, she might be suffering the same fate as he. She kissed his lips and blew on them in extra efforts to make him feel better. At least he looked less like he was about to pass out now. "I'm sorry, Marcus. I'm gonna keep you warm as long as it takes. I'll make your wounds feel better as soon as I can..." She kissed all over his face. Each individual kiss was so warm. This was the final straw. Marcus was getting a Pope mobile for his birthday. He needed to be kept in a bubble where he couldn't get hurt.

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