This is my response to The Force Awakens.
Yes, it should have been beta'ed, but I couldn't help myself; I just had to put something out there in dissent to the miserable life JJ Abrams/Lawrence Kasdan/Disney created for Han and Leia.
I played with the spelling of someone's name, just a little side note. And this has one minor reference to my current fic An Unexpected Journey.
If you read, please review... and let me know what you think of TFA's version of their life.
"Here - let me do that," Leia insisted firmly, but softly, knowing her husband's arthritic fingers had no chance of finishing the Corellian sash tie without a considerable amount of discomfort. And she also knew it was easier on Han to banter back and forth, rather than bring attention to the frustration created from an aging body that sometimes refused to cooperate with his mind; a mind that was still as sharp as when they escaped the Death Star so many decades ago.
She smiled to herself, grateful for those fingers that still stroked her long gray hair on a daily basis and caressed her cheek and held her close when they fell asleep each night...
"You know I hate wearing ties," Han winced, screwing up his face while shifting restlessly in dress boots that were much less comfortable than his old stand-byes. "This is almost worse than having to sit through a mellow dramatic holovid."
"Point conceded there, though I think you'll survive a little bit of dressing up. Besides, you only have to wear it for our renewal ceremony and the family holos, which won't take too long afterwards. Now, sit still so I can finish."
"After fifty years of marriage, you're still bossing me around," Han grumbled, a lopsided grin breaking across his cheeks to betray genuine amusement.
"Some things will never change; I thought you realized that by now," Leia chuckled before mildly scolding him again. "Stop fidgeting...you're doing that on purpose, aren't you? I need to double-check my hair before everyone arrives." It was a bit of a miracle in and of itself - that all of their children and grand children would be joining in their anniversary celebration, along with Luke and some other close family friends.
Han ghosted a hand over his wife's braided masterpiece. "Honey, your hair looks perfect to me. Wait a minute - I can't believe all the kids are actually going to make it. Are you sure? - Even Jaken? He's so busy with that shipping business of his."
Leia finished the Corellian sash-tie with a satisfied sigh, then rested her palms on Han's chest and met his gaze with a radiant smile. "Yes, all of them. You know they wouldn't miss seeing us renewing our vows for the worlds. Fifty years," Leia whispered as she cupped his cheek in her hand.
Han's eyes moistened with gratitude for all the decades they had together. He studied Leia's countenance and marveled; time had changed them both in physical appearance, but that didn't matter. His wife had grown more beautiful to him with each passing day. Lowering his lips to hers, they sank into a series of tender kisses. "Fifty years, " he breathed against her temple. "We've had quite a journey together, haven't we, Sweetheart?"
"We certainly have," Leia agreed with a wistful smile. She rested her cheek against his chest with a contented sigh while Han's arms encircled her, their breathing synchronizing as they fell into quiet contemplation of shared thoughts and memories.
Fifty years as husband and wife...
Fifty years of joys and sorrows, but mostly joys - thank the Maker. Of laughter and tears, of gentle conversations and passionate lovemaking. Of heated arguments followed by apologies and forgiveness. Of learning when to be silent, or not. Of accomplishments and failures, and lessons learned about what authentic love and devotion were really all about – the most important lesson imparted, that love was much more than an emotion, but a conscious decision to serve and to sacrifice...to put their spouse's needs first.
Fifty years of babies and children. Of late-night feedings and enduring post-partem blues together, of learning the best way to burp an infant and the wisdom of getting them on a schedule. Of reading stories and reading them the riot-act for misbehaving. Of playing games and assigning chores. Of disciplining and guiding, of raising their children with unconditional love. Of weathering family sickness' and enjoying family vacations. Of the delight found in holding in their arms grandbabies, and now great grandbabies – two more on the way in the not too distant future.
Fifty years together. Of two becoming one - mind, body, and soul, making them...complete.
The insistent chime - along with the clattering of C3PO's feet as he scampered to answer the door - announced that either family or friends had just arrived, bringing husband and wife out of their reveries.
They separated with him clearing his throat and her wiping away a few more stray tears. "Better see who's here," Leia grinned before giving Han a soft peck on his cheek.
"It won't be Lando, that's for sure. He's always late."
She began to chuckle. "It better be Luke. I want to make sure he remembers how to perform the renewal vows for the ceremony correctly. It's been a long time since our twenty-fifth anniversary."
Han reached for his wife's hand, slowing her departure by touching his lips against her palm. His familiar crooked smile returned while briefly playing with Leia's Alderaanian Fire ruby ring between two finger pads, lost in memories again. It was the same ring he had proposed with – and almost died getting - on Corellia, all of those years ago. That was the best gamble he had ever taken in his life. "Let's plan on doing this renewal-thing again for our sixtieth bonding anniversary," he suggested with a mischievous twinkle in his eyes.
She kissed him in mutual agreement, saying a silent prayer that they would continue to be blessed with the gift of good health, to achieve that goal. "I'm going to hold you to that."
"And after tonight, I won't have to wear this damn tie for another ten years," Han boasted happily as a volley of voices bounced off the foyer's stone walls.
Leia shook her head, combing her fingers one last time through his perpetually unruly hair; something else that hadn't changed all that much in fifty years. "You're still my scoundrel."
"And you'll always be my Princess."