Fandom: Star Wars
Prompt: fanfic50's #44 - Couple
Word Count: 1098
Summary: “There are moments in life, when the heart is so full of emotion That if by chance it be shaken, or into its depths like a pebble Drops some careless word, it overflows, and its secret, Spilt on the ground like water, can never be gathered together” ~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Author's Notes: Oh hey, I wrote something besides Palpakin.
The transmission came in shortly after the appointed time of 0500. Padmé settled herself on the sofa with her datapad, swallowing her anxiety as she pressed the "receive" button. Her husband appeared before her in ghostly blue miniature form.
"Ani! It's so good to see you!" she began excitedly, as if she hadn't been up all night both dreading and anticipating this communication. "How are you?"
"Alive. Which is saying something these days." The bitter words were softened by a small smile, and she wondered if she'd been wrong to think he'd seen it...
"I've missed you so much," she declared earnestly.
He sounded accusatory. "Of course I have. I always do," she assured him.
"That's not what it seems like to me."
Padmé sighed. So he had seen it. "What are you talking about?"
"You know what I'm talking about. I saw the Holonet thing, Padmé. What, you think that because I'm out in the field I wouldn't notice? That you can do whatever the hell you want? Make a fool of me?!"
She resisted the urge to ask him just how she could have made a fool of him if no one knew they were married; she saw no need to further incite his misplaced rage. "Calm down, Ani! It was nothing -- we barely talked."
"That's not what the reporter seemed to think!"
"You know how they're always trying to spin things," she explained patiently. "The truth is I spent most of the gala with Bail and Breha."
"Sure you did."
"You don't believe me? You'd rather believe some gossip columnist than your own wife?"
"Maybe. Yeah. I mean I'm out here, I can't see for myself. They said you were laughing. Were you?"
"This is ridiculous. Yes, I think I laughed a few times. Rasit is funny! It's not like--"
"Rasit?! So you're on a first name basis with this jerk! Are you dating him? You know, to 'keep up our cover' -- oh, sorry, I mean PRETEND LIKE I DON'T EXIST!"
"Ani, Senator Brun is just a -- he's not even a friend, I don't even know him! We just talked for a few minutes!"
"And he didn't know that you're married, of course, because you weren't wearing your ring!"
Padmé stared at Anakin's image in bewilderment. "Of course he didn't know and of course I wasn't wearing it -- it's a secret, remember? No one can--"
"I know, I know, just... UGHHH. Do you have any idea how frustrating it is to be out here fighting for the Republic and not see you in forever and then -- then I see this and it's like you don't even miss me at all!"
She wanted to snap at him and point out that it wasn't exactly easy on her either, wondering all the time if he was dead or alive. The Fete Week Senate Gala had been the first time she'd actually managed to enjoy herself in a really long time, and he wanted to punish her for it?
"I miss you every minute of every day, Ani," she said. Though not so much when you're like this.
"Riiiiight. I'm sure you were missing me real hard when you were laughing it up with Razzy." Oh, how she hated it when he took this nasty tone with her!
"You're giving far too much credence to this Holonet piece. You don't see me overreacting to the gossip about you and Obi-Wan, do you?"
"Are you going to see him again?"
"It's not like I went on a date with him. But no. Of course not."
"Did he ask you out, though?"
Yes, in fact, he did. But that knowledge would only make Anakin angrier. "No," she lied firmly.
A pause. "You're lying."
Damn! How could he tell? "Ani, I'm not going to see him again, all right? You have to believe me! I love you, I would never betray you!"
"Yet you lie to me!"
"Ani, please! Let's not waste what little time we have fighting!"
"What were you wearing? There was no 'still so I had to use my imagination. Was it the black one?"
"It was black, but not the one you--"
"It was, wasn't it! He was probably staring at your cleavage the whole time!"
Padmé gasped in shock. "What?! It was a very modest dre--"
"I don't want you dressing sexy for anyone but me, you got that?"
He was really trying her patience now. "You're not even listening to me! I didn't wear anything even remotely sexy. But you don't dictate what I can and can't wear, I'm not your property, Ani!"
"But you are my wife. You'd damn well better remember that. Look, I gotta go. I'll message you when I can--"
And just like that he was gone. Padmé wasn't sure if he'd cut the feed abruptly to preserve secrecy or because he'd been too angry to exchange goodbyes. She would wonder about it until the next message came, days or weeks from now, and by then she'd be too far-removed from the incident to ask him.
She also wondered if she should have apologized, even though she didn't feel like she'd done anything wrong. But that would be admitting guilt, wouldn't it? And yet... she was guilty, a little... she had gone to the party, not only because it was expected of her but because she had actually been hoping to have a nice time. It wasn't fair for her to have fun without Anakin. Not when he was stuck fighting this awful war.
And when Senator Brun had shown an interest in her, she should have discouraged it. She should have stifled her laughter. She shouldn't have noticed how his warm brown eyes sparkled when he looked at her. She shouldn't have found him attractive and easy to talk to.
And she certainly shouldn't have found herself hesitating when he asked her to dinner... how disloyal she was, imagining for even a moment what it would be like if she were single, free to go out with whomever she pleased, to enjoy a nice meal with a nice man who could ease her pain and fear and loneliness, who was here and real and not just a tiny angry holoprojected image....
She loved Anakin. She did. And when he came home next, she'd make it up to him. She'd make sure they didn't fight, and that he knew how much she loved him. It took more than words with Anakin. She'd make sure he never doubted her again.
At least until next time.