While Aristocra Saganu wasn’t more than a fling for female agents on Hoth, my Na’anee lost her heart to him. Though they didn’t spend day and night together, they wrote each other, and tried to meet whenever possible. After the events of Knights of the Fallen Empire and Knights of the Eternal Throne, it took a while for them to be together again. I did not expect Bioware to actually acknowledge the romance during “A Traitor Among The Chiss”. But that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, right? I wrote my own reunion story for my favorite Chiss couple. I hope, you like it. 🙂
The Red Flame was the ideal state of perfection among the Chiss. The Red Flame represented cunning, courage, discipline and a state of preparedness. Chiss serving in the military often wore red piping to remind them of the ideals of the Red Flame. (Wookieepedia)
My Red Flame
A gentle breeze blew over the sea, letting several white kites move elegantly in the sky, like large and graceful creatures. Na’anee stood at the window, looking over the city leading to the blue ocean at the horizon. The view from the estate of House Miurani was stunning. Copero was the most beautiful world she’d ever seen.
After she arrived, a servant had escorted her to Aristocra Saganu’s private quarters in the west wing of the estate. Though it was only one room, it was large enough to contain three separate areas. Light, clear decorations were set against dark, wooden furniture. A working area was on the south end with large shelves covering the wall as high as the room itself. It contained all kind of books with leathern covers. When she first explored the room, she had let her fingertips wander over the back of the books, trying to read their titles and inhaling the unique smell of leather, paper and ink. A heavy, wooden desk separated the working from the comfort area, behind it a white, comfortable armchair. Of course she had tried it.
The living area was an arrangement of no less comfortable couches, small side tables with beautiful flowers in minimalistic vases. A massive table stood in the middle with a fruit bowl on top, containing fruits she couldn’t name.
Behind an artful, white room divider with geometric shapes carved into it, was a large bed on the north end. Too large for one person. The thought of that felt like a punch in the guts. She had decided it was probably better not to try the bed. It looked comfy though.
So she stood at the window, staring out over the sea, trying to keep her thoughts in check. There was no indicator of a woman sharing this room with him. No obvious indicators at least. She didn’t search for it. That would’ve been an invasion of his privacy and she wouldn’t do that. And so she waited, thinking of banal things like old nursery rhymes to distract her thoughts and her stomach.
She just came to the conclusion that she didn’t know nearly enough nursery rhymes when she heard the unmistakable sound of a door pushed open. She didn’t need to turn around or search the reflection of the window to know that it wasn’t the servant who had entered. The way the small hair at the back of her neck were standing up told her everything she needed to know.
Aristocra Saganu stood on the other side of the room, watching her. Neither said a word for several minutes. Well, it felt like several minutes. Could’ve been only seconds. She didn’t know. She was too busy to keep the knot in her stomach from turning her inside out. Emptying herself on the marble floor in front of him wouldn’t leave a very charming impression. Still, she needed to break the silence somehow.
“I’ve never been to Copero before,” she started, trying to keep her voice steady. She did a terrible job at it. “This world is a paradise.” Sure, small talk was always your strong suite… not, she added in her thoughts only.
“I thought you were dead,” Saganu said. His efforts to keep his emotions out of his voice were as poor as hers. “When you stopped replying to my messages, and didn’t answer my holo calls for weeks, I eventually contacted Raina. She told me what had happened in Wild Space and that she was already searching for you, with no success. So I started looking into your whereabouts on my own, pulling every resource I could think of and beyond. I kept sending you letters. Daily at first, then weekly, monthly. After two years, I… stopped. I thought I’ve had lost you. I’ve mourned you. What happened? Why didn’t you contact me?”
Bewildered she finally turned to face him. “What do you mean? I did write you.” A frown appeared on his face, his eyes signalling that it was his turn to be confused. Before he could say anything though, she continued. “As soon as I arrived in more or less civilized space with access to the holonet, I checked my messages and calls. I read every single one of your letters. Then I’ve spent two days trying to find the right words to answer you. I mean how do you say ‘Hey, I’m back. Sorry, I didn’t want to ignore you but I was a frozen carbonite block for five years?’ Felt like I had written a complete novel when I hit that send button.”
“I never received that message,” he answered, sadness in his voice.
“When you didn’t answer, I… assumed you had moved on. I didn’t want to come back like an avalanche, destroying the life you might have built. I am… sorry.” Na’anee reached to the data pad on her belt. “I still have it.” She took a few steps toward him, her eyes on the pad, searching for the message in her sent folder. “There it is.” She handed him the data pad. Saganu closed the remaining gap, taking it. “May I?”
“Of course,” she answered with a shy smile. “It was after all for you.”
Saganu sat down on one of the couches and started reading. She watched him at first, but that only turned the knot in her stomach into a black hole, devouring her from the inside. So she went back to the window, holding herself steady at the windowsill, keeping one eye on his reflection. It felt like hours had passed when she heard the familiar sound of a data pad put down on a table, followed by the rustling of Saganu’s cloak as he stood up, moving towards her.
She could feel his breath through the hair on her neck. Gently, he moved a strand of her hair behind her ear, watching her through the reflection as well. He laid his hands on her waist and softly turned her around. Her eyes met his. She found sorrow in them, but also desire. His hand came up and his thumb brushed gently across her lips as his fingers traced her cheekbone, down her jaw to her chin. As if he wanted to make sure, she wasn’t just a figment of his imagination. His touch sent ripples through her body, erecting every single fine hair on her body. She closed her eyes and single tear rolled down her cheek. He brushed it gently away.
“My Red Flame…” Just a whisper, with a shy smile on his lips. Something inside her relaxed as she knew she was welcomed, wanted, loved. More tears were rolling down her cheeks as she stretched up on her tiptoes to kiss him. Saganu wrapped his arms around her, pressing her against him as if he intended to never let go again. Without another word they made their way to the large bed, leaving a trail of clothes behind.
Breathless Na’anee rolled down from him on her back, trying to get air into her lungs. All tension was gone from her body, the black hole in her stomach neutralized. She felt energized. Like she could take on the whole universe, as soon as her legs would obey her again. She rolled onto her side, snuggling against his chest.
“I missed you,” he said, kissing her forehead.
“I missed you, too. If only I’ve had send more…”
“Shh… there is no point in dwelling on it. You are here now and that is all that matters.”
“If only I could say that I never leave you again.”
“This Galaxy would fall apart,” he chuckled. “Look what happened while you slept in carbonite.”
For the first time in years, Na’anee laughed. “Hey, where do you think you’re going,” she asked as Saganu attempted to get up.
“I have something for you.”
He walked over to his desk, taking a small case out of a drawer. Na’anee leaned out of the bed to watch him every step of the way. When he came back, he sat down on the edge of her side of the bed, holding it with both hands like it was a rare treasure. “I commissioned it years ago, before you vanished. I’ve waited for the right moment to give it to you, but… well, you know how that ended.” He slightly shook his head. “Anyway, I have decided that now is the perfect moment. Before you disappear again.” He smirked, and caught her hand as she moved it to playfully hit him. Na’anee got up on her elbow and took the case from his hands. When she opened it only a gasp escaped her lips. What she saw was the most beautiful necklace she’d ever seen. A red jewel, reflecting the light in a way that it looked like it contained a living, red flame, formed as a drop in a simple, silver pendant. She was pretty much speechless.
“It’s a Corusca gem,” Saganu explained. “When I saw the raw gem at a jewellery here on Copero it reminded me of you. I sat down with the jeweller, trying to design the perfect pendant, but everything we came up with did neither you or the gem justice. It is already perfect, as are you.”
“Saganu, I… don’t know what to say,” she whispered with tears in her eyes. She couldn’t even begin to express her feelings. This was the most thoughtful gift she ever got.
“Turn it around.”
She took the necklace out of the case and did as she was told. Engraved on its back were two words. ‘Ever yours’ She swallowed hard to get rid of the lump in her throat, already close to crying again. She tore her eyes away from the pendant to look at him. “I…” that was all she managed to say. His hand came up, caressing the skin of her face.
“I know that we cannot be together day and night,” he continued. “Maybe one day, when we’re no longer called to action by this Galaxy, we can finally settle down and build a life together. Leaving the struggles and the fighting behind us. What ever happens until then, I…” He stopped mid-sentence, frowning, trying to find the right words. “I am yours. Forever.” He closed his eyes while making another, dramatic pause. Na’anee’s heart felt like it would jump out of her chest any moment. “Bond with me,” he continued. “Let’s make it official.” He spoke the last words faster than usually, as if he wanted to make sure they passed his lips before he might lose the nerve.
“Saganu, I…” Now it was Na’anee’s turn to struggle for words. Emotions were overturning inside her. She wanted to throw her arms around him. She wanted to shout ‘Yes’, so loud that the whole Galaxy could hear her. But she still was Chiss. As was he. And so she probably said the most stupid thing she could in this moment. “Are you sure? I mean… I’m not from a rich or important hou…” He cut her off. “I don’t care. I told you many times before what you mean to me. How I see you. That you are my Red Flame. Maybe your original house isn’t important. But you are. To me, you are the most important person in this entire Galaxy. And before you ask, my family will have to come to terms with it. I am after all the head of this house. And I want you.” After a moment of silence he tilted is head. “What do you say?”
A bright smile spread over Na’anee’s face. “Yes. I say yes. I would be honoured to be your wife.”
He came closer to her, leaning his forehead against hers. “The honour is mine. I will see to it that the paperwork is ready before you leave Copero, but for now…” He swung his legs back into the bed. “Come here.”
She put the necklace and the case on the vacant side of the bed next to her and snuggled close to his chest. When she escaped Zakuul, she had sworn to get her life back. This was the last missing piece. Now, her heart was healed and with that, for the first time since she’d been freed from carbonite, she felt like herself again.
~ The End ~
I hope, you liked it. Feel free to leave me a comment with your thoughts. I’m eager to hear them. Until then… have a great weekend.