The next morning, Rey woke when Ben shook her shoulder lightly and murmured, “Do you want to train with me?”
She stretched, arching her back and groaning as her muscles protested the much different workout they’d gotten the night before. She slid out of bed, went to relieve herself, and changed quickly before allowing Ben to lead her to his private training room. He was dressed down, barefoot in a sleeveless tunic and soft pants, both black.
Ben tossed her a staff, and they fell into a light patter of strikes, warming up their muscles.
That familiar ache as she worked the sleep from her system reminded her of early mornings on Jakku. She used to wake before the sun so she could get her things ready and find a good scavenging spot before the oppressive heat had a chance to set in.
When the door hissed open, they were sparring properly, both holding back only enough to avoid injury. Rey threw herself into the fight, and Ben didn’t go easy on her. Rey grinned into his face when he bore down on her much the way he had on Starkiller before she’d overpowered him, and she dropped to sweep his legs.
He jumped to avoid it and tried to pin her, but Rey rolled out of the way and to her feet, slashing at him as she went to keep him off balance.
By the time Nalti cleared her throat at them, they were both damp with sweat and breathing hard.
“I brought today’s schedule,” Nalti said, keeping her eyes firmly on Rey as Ben grabbed a cloth to dry off, though she did raise a sly brow at Rey when he turned his back.
Rey only grinned back at her assistant.
“You have two briefings with the Supreme Leader this morning, first with the military leaders, then with the quartermaster.
“After that is lunch, then you have a meeting with Desomma’s staff recommendation, and then time set aside to discuss additions to your guard team and who you’d like to promote to captain. Dinner after that. Desomma would like to check one of her alterations on you tonight, but I’ll let you decide before dinner if you feel up for it. She can wait a day if she has to.”
Rey thought about that, about the dresses Desomma had prepared for her and the way everyone had reacted when she’d worn the shimmering dress to Abednedo. “Which dress is it?”
“The black one.”
“Have her prepare it in my room for after my shower. If it fits, I’ll wear it to this morning’s meetings.”
Nalti’s brows rose, but she smiled and nodded, tapping the information into her datapad. “I’ll go get her now. Unless there’s anything else you need first?”
“That should do. Thank you, Nalti.”
Once Nalti left, Ben slid his hands onto Rey’s hips from behind and pulled her back against his chest. “Busy day.”
She tilted her face back and let him kiss her.
He groaned softly and turned her, pulling her flush against him and deepening the kiss.
“Do we have time?” Rey whispered as she let herself be lowered to the mat.
Ben nuzzled her ear. “It’s not like they can start without us.”
Rey linked her arms behind his neck. “True.”