*Chapter 1*: Chapter 1
Disclaimer: Harry Potter is the work of J. K. Rowling. Star Wars is the work of George Lucas and others.
A/N: Fifteen chapters. Same routine as usual, one a day unless something dreadful happens. If you've read my other stories and liked them you might like this one. If you read them and didn't like them... do you really hate yourself that much? Go and find something to enjoy!
Jedi Master, Qui-Gon Jinn, jumped to his feet, pulling the sentient native off the floor. He had just landed on the planet Naboo and saved the being's life by pulling him to the ground so they weren't smashed into by one of the invading Trade Federation's MTTs.
He was just about to question the native for intel on the planet when he felt a disturbance in the Force.
And then it vanished.
Then he heard a noise. Mid-pitch, steady and only wavering slightly.
Then he realised it was coming from above.
A large object landed with such force that it threw him back a foot or so.
Qui-Gon quickly recovered and looked at the sight before him in horror and confusion.
There was a human boy dressed in dark clothes. It was lying, groaning on top of the remains of the native he had just rescued.
He moved forward, his lightsaber snapping to his hand but not igniting.
Then he paused.
He couldn't sense the boy. He was invisible to him in the Force.
He gripped his weapon tighter and moved more cautiously.
"Can you hear me?" He asked without touching the boy.
"Sirius?" The boy groaned. "What happened?"
"You landed from very high up and killed a Gungan." Qui-Gon said emotionlessly.
"What's a Gungan?" There was a second's pause before the boy opened his eyes wide and stared at him. "You're not Sirius."
"I am very serious." Qui-Gon assured him. "That being was innocent and no threat to you but he died when you crushed him."
The boy looked at him as though weighing him. "I was following a man named Sirius Black. We fell through some sort of veil. He's my godfather." The boy calmly stated. "Now, who are you, where am I, where is Sirius and what the hell is a Gungan?"
Responding in the same calm manner… "I am Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn. You are on the planet of Naboo. I do not know this 'Sirius Black'. A Gungan is a native of this planet and you are sitting on his corpse."
The pair simply stared at each other.
Eventually the boy slowly looked down. Clearly noticed the dead and now awkwardly posed body. Shuddered. And leapt to his feet. "What is wrong with you?!" He demanded. "You don't just let someone sit on a dead body and not tell them! Don't you have any respect?"
Qui-Gon was having a bit of a difficult time dealing with this boy. Not because he appeared from nowhere and killed someone without seeming to mean to. No, it was because he couldn't sense the boy. Like most Jedi, Qui-Gon was taken in by the Jedi Order as a baby. Since he could remember, he had felt the Force. He felt it in himself, his surroundings and the people he met. Even droids and holograms had some resonance in the Force.
But this boy simply didn't exist. Like some type of illusion.
It made it difficult for him to relate to the boy.
"Do you have a name?" Start with the basics, eventually the Living Force would guide him.
"Harry. Harry Potter." The boy stated as he looked around, taking in his surroundings. "Planet Naboo?"
"That is correct."
"Not planet Earth?"
"I do not recall a planet with that name." Qui-Gon said slowly.
"And there was no black-haired man here when I arrived?"
"Just myself and the Gungan."
"Probably no point asking you the date." Harry muttered to himself.
"968 Post Ruusan Reformation."
"Like I said: No point asking you the date." Harry grumbled.
Harry looked around, desperately searching for anything that would tell him what to do.
Qui-Gon turned at the sound of his Padawan's voice. The young man was running up at speeds only possible with the Force. "Obi-Wan, good. You are safe."
"It was not hard to slip past the droid army." Obi-Wan assured him. Then he saw the boy and dead body. "Is he a native?" He whispered.
"I confess that I do not know what he is." Qui-Gon admitted. Obi-Wan was surprised to hear the frustration in his Master's voice. "Padawan, reach out, what does the Force tell you of the boy?" He instructed.
Obi-Wan's brow furrowed in concentration for a few moments.
Harry was currently trying to figure out what spells he could use to find Sirius. He tried a summoning charm and a Point Me. All that told him was Sirius wasn't in range and that Harry was facing North.
Then he felt something poke him.
"Gah!" He jumped back as he came face to face with a young man, maybe a few years older than him.
"Are you real?" The man asked.
"Yes! You just poked me!" Harry said indignantly.
Obi-Wan blushed slightly as he realised what he had done. "My apologies. I was confused as I cannot sense you in the Force."
Harry did not look impressed. "You just poked me. I think there was a bit of force involved."
Obi-Wan had to think about that for a second and was about to correct the new-comer, but Qui-Gon interrupted.
"We need to move, Padawan. We need to find the Queen and discover more of what is behind this occupation."
"Hey! Could you at least point me in the direction of some civilisation?" Harry said a little heatedly. So far he had lost his godfather, been accused of murder and then been poked.
Pretty much par for the course as far his year had been going.
"I would appreciate it greatly if you would accompany us." Qui-Gon said firmly, but still respectfully.
"My Padawan and I are on a mission from the Jedi Council. We were sent to investigate and facilitate negotiations. Since we were attacked we are now investigating the truth behind the invasion of this planet."
"Not quite yet. I do believe it would benefit you to accompany us as you are clearly lost and confused. The Jedi Council may be able to help you find this 'Sirius' you seek."
Unfortunately for Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan was looking at his Master as though he had hit his head a bit too hard. Maybe he had inhaled too much of that poison.
"Uh huh. And the rest of the reason?" Harry smirked as he nodded to Obi-Wan.
There was a hint of exasperation as Qui-Gon saw Obi-Wan flush slightly.
"You are… unusual. We cannot sense you in the Force. We would like to take you before the Council to see if they are aware of your condition."
Harry backed up a step and scowled. "Like a trial? Because I landed on him?" He pointed at the dead body.
Qui-Gon shook his head firmly. "No. Although I have no way to prove it, I do not believe you intended to kill the Gungan. I simply wish to see if the Council is familiar with someone like yourself."
Harry was torn. He needed to find Sirius, he assumed he landed nearby. Of course, he had also assumed he was still on Earth.
"Fine. I'll come."
It was a six-hour hike to the capital city. Harry spent an hour of that time being lectured by Obi-Wan that there was no such thing as magic.
Qui-Gon seemed to find that amusing.
The remaining five hours were spent in silence thanks to a silencing charm from Harry.
Obi-Wan was panicking at first, but eventually he settled into peeved.
As they approached the outskirts of the city, Qui-Gon requested that Harry let his Padawan speak again. Obi-Wan had to settle for glaring at Harry still as Qui-Gon had him silenced with nothing but a look.
Harry was impressed.
As they moved through the city, Qui-Gon quietly explained to Harry that the city was called 'Theed' and that they were going to try and find and, if necessary, rescue the planetary leader; Queen Amidala.
What followed was a stealthy infiltration of the palace, pausing to take note of orders being passed around the invaders and-
"Robots? These invaders are robots?" Harry hissed.
Harry and Qui-Gon gave Obi-Wan such a dry look that the Padawan actually took a swig from his flask.
"We call them droids." Qui-Gon answered Harry. "They work for organic masters; The Trade Federation."
"Do they run on electricity?"
Clearly Qui-Gon had no idea what Harry was talking about.
"Never mind, let's just move on. Oh, are the… erm… 'droids' all connected to each other?"
"They are not a hive mind if that is what you are asking. But they all have communicators."
"Cool, so knock 'em down and unless they can use the radio no one will know."
Qui-Gon gave Obi-Wan a disappointed look. "Communicators."
Harry's presence seemed to have rattled his Padawan. Of course, it was probably more the boy's lack of presence in the force.
They were about to move on-
"Hey, are the 'communicators' built inside the 'droids' or do they carry them like we would?" Harry purposefully enunciated the terms as he looked at Obi-Wan.
"Oh… never mind, I see them. Shall we?" Harry asked as he pulled his wand.
Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan followed Harry's gaze to where a group of eclectically dressed individuals were being marched through the courtyard by robots.
There were eight of these droids and they were all on the edges of the group with their guns in their hands.
Starting with the back of the group, Harry quickly cast silencing charms on each of the droids. "All yours, I guess."
Harry was not entirely impressed when the two men jumped out with glowing swords and started hacking the droids to bits.
Still, in less than ten seconds the pair had eliminated the droids to scrap.
Harry moved out of hiding. "Didn't you say something about 'stealth'?" He asked Qui-Gon sarcastically as he moved towards one of the more intact droids.
Aside from another 'Obi-Glare', Harry was ignored. Qui-Gon was instantly mobbed by the former prisoners demanding to know what was going on and what the Republic and the Jedi were doing to help them.
"Hey! Obi." Harry called out.
"It is 'Obi-Wan'." Said 'Obi' growled as he approached.
"Uh-huh. Can we get this radio off and working?" He tapped the two long antennae sticking up out of the torso's shoulders.
"Why? It doesn't make sense to encumber ourselves."
"No, but it does make sense to spy on the enemy so we can avoid them." Harry was acutely remembering the battle in the Ministry only hours previous.
Well, hours for him.
"That's good thinking, boy." A tall black man in uniform said as he approached and picked up the dead droid's weapon. He hooked it on his back and then heaved the droid onto its front and started prying apart the chassis. "Good to see the Jedi are turning out practical thinkers."
"What's a Jedi?" Harry interrupted Obi-Wan's indignant protest.
Obi-Wan looked insulted and the man was confused.
Fortunately for Harry, Obi-Wan was called over by Qui-Gon. The man just continued with his work.
The man was apparently called 'Captain Panaka'. He was in charge of the Queen's security detail. The plan was to covertly make their way to the Royal Space Hangers and flee the planet to seek aid from the inter-planetary government.
Harry had a major issue with the Queen. She was dressed in all back with a huge feathered headdress and a painted white face.
"You have got to change." Harry frowned. "If we come across any enemies they will take one look at us and know who the Queen is."
"Her Majesty will be perfectly safe." Panaka firmly stated.
Harry looked at Panaka. He could see the man was not going to budge. It was like Dumbledore always going on about trusting Snape.
Harry growled and started digging in his pocket. "Would you please put this on?" He held up his Cloak of Invisibility.
The Queen looked amused. "I do not believe that will help me blend in."
Harry glared at her as he swung the cloak around his shoulders and vanished from sight.
Guns were immediately pointed in his direction.
"I know Obi-Wan, calm yourself. Harry, are you still there?"
"I'm somewhere." Harry's voice came from the back of the group and they all turned. "Of course, you'd never find me." They turned inwards as the voice came from the middle of the group.
Harry pulled back the hood and smirked at the Queen. "Blend in or disappear, your choice."
"It is a good plan, Your Majesty." One of the women in red robes said earnestly. She was one of five, Harry kept missing one and thinking there were four, their robes were a mix of red and orange and made them blend with each other easily. He wondered if that was on purpose.
The Queen frowned, looking down in thought. A few seconds later she looked at Harry. "Will your robe cover two people?"
"Sure. I've had three under here before. We were a lot smaller back then though."
She looked to Captain Panaka with an expression that brooked no argument. "I will use the robe and take Padme with me."
"I live to serve, Your Majesty." The same woman in red said as she stepped forward.
Panaka sighed but nodded.
Harry swung the cloak off his shoulders. "Just for reference, but it's a cloak, not a robe." He said with a blush. "Please be careful with it. It's all I have left of my family."
The Queen and Padme both tensed slightly. The Queen inclined her head. "We will endeavour to ensure its safe return, sir."
"Harry. Harry Potter." Harry introduced himself. "If you two will stand together I will cast a charm that will make you completely silent. Even your footsteps won't be heard. It will last until I remove it."
"Charm?" Panaka stepped forwardly suspiciously.
"If it is what he used on me then it is utterly harmless but… under the right circumstances, it is more potent than hiding with the Force." Obi-Wan clearly didn't enjoy backing Harry's 'magic'.
"We must move quickly." Qui-Gon interrupted. "Harry has shown great skill with his magic. I trust him in this matter. However, there may be a better use for his cloak." He then turned to Harry. "Are you capable of combat?"
Harry swallowed, memories of the recent debacle at the Ministry still fresh. "Yeah… yeah, I can fight. I don't know if I can win though."
"Our departure would be expedited if you could scout ahead and disable any major hindrances."
"Erm… like what?"
"Sentry guns, surveillance-"
"I have no idea what they look like or how they work."
"I will go with him." Padme said as she stepped forward, ignoring the look from the Queen.
"No. Absolutely not." Panaka put his foot down. "I will go."
Most of the group looked between Harry and the Captain with amusement.
"Seriously, just take the Cloak." Harry half pleaded with the Queen. His respect for the man had gone down a notch when the near six-foot man suggested going under a cloak with a five-foot-five boy.
The Queen stepped forward and put an arm around Padme's waist. "We will follow Harry Potter's plan."
The group moved forward, there was a gap behind the four remaining women in red, who Harry learned were the Queen's Handmaidens. In that gap was the Queen and Padme. Padme had a firm grip on the robes of the handmaiden closest and gave the occasional tug to let her know they were still there.
After the first patrol they came across, Harry got fed up with the noisy lightsabres against metal droids. He stopped the group before they attacked the second patrol, cast whispered silencers at the five droids and then whispered cutting curses at their heads.
Needless to say the group was impressed.
Then they reached the hanger.
All the workers were in a small group on their knees guarded by eight droids. Five droids were guarding the ramp leading into the Queen's personal ship. A really shiny and smooth vessel.
It was big, but not as big as a 747 jet.
The group paused outside the doors to the hanger.
"I can silence them, but they will notice when they start losing their heads." Harry sighed.
At this point the Queen pulled back the hood of the cloak, revealing only her head. It took the group a moment to come to terms with the floating head.
"Perhaps now would be a good time for Harry to take his cloak and investigate." She said.
Harry's task was to sneak into the hanger, silence all the droids and then return.
So that's what he did.
"There are ten more robots against the wall." He reported back.
"We can deal with the droids." Qui-Gon assured him. "Your Majesty, if you would please conceal yourselves again, it will make the next step much simpler."
Harry handed over the Cloak and the Queen and Padme once again vanished.
He then turned to Panaka. "Give me your cap. I'll try something for a distraction."
Considering all the other amazing things they had seen the boy do, the Queen's head of security complied.
They watched as Harry placed the cap on the floor and pointed his wooden stick at it with a look of intense concentration.
They gasped as the head piece slowly morphed into a living, breathing, four-legged, black furred, three-foot-tall creature.
"What is that?" Obi-Wan as in awe.
"A hat transfigured into a dog." Harry said with a sad smile as he knelt down and ruffled its fur. The dog nuzzled him happily. "I've never done something like that before. I did it without an incantation based on something I witnessed hours ago."
He was quite proud of himself, despite the sadness and worry the dog brought up as it resembled a smaller Padfoot.
Harry took a breath and stood up. "The dog will go in and cause a distraction and then return to protect the Queen. The rest is up to you."
Panaka nodded. "Let's go then."
The distraction was perfect. The transfigured dog ran barking into the room happily. It twisted through the legs of the droids and then passed them to the hanger exit.
The group moved in, blasters firing.
The group by the ship were easily mowed down as Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon moved to the ones guarding the prisoners.
But then it nearly all went to hell.
The droids that were hidden started to move out. Harry drew his wand.
Except the bits of droid that rained down.
And Harry, who cast cutting curses at the stunned droids guarding the prisoners. He never noticed the looks of horror and awe he was getting from his fellow escapists.
"What are you waiting for?" He demanded of the stunned hanger workers. "Grab a gun!"
He then marched back to the group, still not realising the looks they gave him. "Shouldn't we be leaving?" He asked curiously.
That shook them and they were soon on board and hurtling up out of the atmosphere.
The flight from the planet was not quite as smooth as it was onto the ship. They were fired at by the large blockade and only escaped because one of the little robots had managed to fix the ship from the outside. They had lost a few others in the process.
Harry was a bit melancholy as he found a place to sit and rest. It was a room filled with tools and boxes, but no people. It was a great place to think.
And he had a lot to think about. Sirius was missing. Harry was stranded on a planet that was not Earth and had no idea how to get back or even which direction to look in.
He had also landed in the middle of a war.
He hoped his friends were ok back in England. Had they escaped the Death Eaters? Was the Ministry going to prosecute them or would they finally see that Malfoy and the rest were truly evil?
Harry was broken from his thoughts by the sound of whistles and beeps.
"Oh, I am sorry."
Harry looked up and saw the Queen's Handmaiden at the door with one of the droids. "Sorry, I just wanted to find somewhere to rest and think. I can get out of your way."
"No! Please." She said quickly. "I am just here to try and clean and fix R2-D2." She gestured to the droid.
Harry kept to himself that it looked like a dustbin on wheels. It currently looked as dirty as one. "Pad- erm… Padma?"
The girl smiled. "Padme."
"Ah, sorry, I just know a girl named Padma. I'm Harry."
"Of course." She laughed. "The Queen was asking after you earlier. You are a Hero of Naboo."
She saw Harry's expression drop. "I am sorry, it is not meant to be offensive." She said quickly.
"No- No. It's not that." Harry grimaced. "I've been called a hero for most of my life. Mainly because of something that happened when I was a baby. But, recently, the people who called me a hero have been… less than nice."
Padme frowned as she began puttering around, looking for cleaning supplies.
Harry smiled at R2-D2 as it gave a low whine and gently bumped into his outstretched leg.
"Her Majesty will not allow you to be treated badly." Padme said firmly. "And once the rest of our people hear what you've done, they won't either."
"People probably thought the same thing back home." Harry gave a her a sad smile. "I'm supposed to have saved their lives, their children… but they still sent people to torture me."
"That's horrible! Is that why you came to Naboo?"
"Ah… I didn't voluntarily come to Naboo… or leave my home planet. I have no idea how I wound up there. I was following my godfather, but he didn't seem to be where I appeared.
"I only came to the palace because Qui-Gon promised to help me look for Sirius if he could take me before this 'Jedi Council'."
"The Jedi are guardians of the galaxy." Padme nodded as she started wiping R2 down. "That is why they came to Naboo."
Harry had a look of disgust at the completely ruined rag that Padme pulled away from R2. "Do you have any machines in here, like R2-D2, something small but not important?"
She frowned and moved to a shelf. After a few seconds, she returned with small device that fit in her hand. She handed it to Harry and returned to her work.
"There must have been some reason for them to turn on you." She half enquired as she scrubbed.
"Because of what happened when I was a baby, they had thirteen years of peace. I told them that the man who caused the trouble was back. The leader of our people went into denial. It didn't help that the right-hand man of the troublemaker was rich and bribing the Minister.
"The government sent people to torture and kill me, but they ignored the killings of citizens and the mass breakout from prison where the most evil minions were held."
"That's disgusting." Padme began scrubbing harder. "Her Majesty would never let something like that happen to you."
"Yeah." Harry sighed. "Of course, you're assuming she'd have a choice."
"She'd still try. She-" Padme gasped and scurried back as all the dirt and grime on R2-D2's metal shell began to flow away into nothing. She looked up to see Harry standing there with his little stick held against the droid's top. "Amazing!"
Harry gave a little chuckle. "No, making that dog was amazing. This was fairly simple. I just needed to make sure my magic wasn't going to hurt the little guy."
R2 gave a few upbeat beeps, his 'head' spinning around.
"Well he's happy." Padme laughed. "You've just saved me hours of work."
"Hold out your hands." He instructed.
Seconds later, Padme was inspecting her perfectly grease free fingers. "I wonder…"
"You can clean things and create things, could you repair them?"
Harry frowned and pulled off his glasses. "I guess… it depends on what it is." He said as he replaced his eyewear.
"The ship's hyperdrive is damaged. We are heading for a planet to try and get a replacement, but until then we are stuck in this sector of space."
Harry grimaced. "I was taking a risk by cleaning R2-D2, here. I would prefer something equivalent to experiment on, at the very least I would want to be on the ground."
Harry was soon left alone as Padme no longer had to scrub R2 clean. Of course, R2 was still with him, but he wasn't sure if droids counted as people. R2-D2 was definitely intelligent.
Unfortunately, R2 didn't speak English and Harry didn't speak… R2.
Still, R2 could understand him and they had worked out a series of whistles for 'yes' or 'no' and 'maybe'.
It was an hour later that Padme returned. Only this time she was not dressed in her red and orange gown. She was wearing heavy boots, with baggy trousers tucked into them and a blue top. Her hair was plaited and tied up in a bun on the back of her head but had strands fall loose down her back.
"Is something wrong?"
Harry realised he had been staring at her hair. "I… your hair… how long is it?"
She giggled. "Quite long." Then she became serious. "Harry, we are about to land on the planet Tatooine. It is not a friendly place. The Queen has asked me to accompany the Jedi as they try and find replacement parts for the hyperdrive. Would you be willing to come as well?"
"Your magic is powerful, Harry." She knelt down next to him where he was seated on the floor, his legs extended and back against the wall. "The Queen has asked that you come with me in case there is trouble."
"You know, I'm only fifteen." Harry grimaced.
"I am fourteen."
Harry looked at her grumpily before struggling to his feet. "The last person who tried to talk me into something like this wound up having me lead a child army."
"Then at least we know you have the experience." She smirked.
*Chapter 2*: Chapter 2
"You know, I don't even have a change of clothes." Harry grumbled as he slogged through the shifting sand dunes of Tatooine. "Is there even a shower back on the ship?"
His walking partner, Padme, just smirked at him. "It is the Queen's personal ship. Not only does it have a shower but also a bath."
"Will I be allowed to use it to try and get rid of all this sand?"
"I'm sure something could be arranged."
Ahead of them, Qui-Gon Jinn marched through the sand towards the settlement ahead. He had changed his robes for what appeared to be a grey poncho. Behind them, R2-D2 trundled along.
Harry dreaded trying to get the sand out of the poor droid's body.
They entered the settlement, Mos Espa, it was quite busy and Harry had trouble focusing on Qui-Gon and trying not to look at every alien they passed.
After speaking with a few natives, Qui-Gon was able to find the location of a suitable seller.
The seller was a bug.
Well, it had bug like wings. It was at the most two feet tall, blue-grey skin, no hair, three fingered 'hands', large teeth, long snout…
And one hell of a nasty attitude.
That wasn't the worst part.
The worst part was the human kid. Maybe nine years old. Name of Anakin.
Harry instantly thought he was looking at a cross between Malfoy and Dudley.
Unfortunately for Harry, he was left alone with the kid, Padme and R2-D2.
"Are you an angel?"
The three travellers looked at the boy who was staring at Padme with an expression close to awe.
"What?" Padme didn't expect that question.
"An angel. I've heard the deep space pilots talk about them. They live on the moons of Iego, I think." Anakin frowned thoughtfully. "They are the most beautiful creatures in the universe. They are good and kind, and so pretty that even the most hardened spice pirates cry."
Harry was fairly certain the boy was repeating a story he had been told many times. But he did agree that Padme was kind and beautiful.
"I have never heard of an angel." Padme admitted.
That made Harry curious. These planets were so different to Earth. It hadn't even been a day since he arrived. "You don't know what an angel is or you've never heard of the ones he's talking about?"
"I meant I had never heard of an angel existing." Padme smiled.
"Oh… so… how would you describe an angel?" He asked curiously.
"I already said! They are beautiful and good and kind!" Anakin huffed.
"Yeah, and I was asking Padme for her answer." Harry tried to keep his tone and expression neutral, but he wasn't fond of the boy's tone.
"I have only read tales of them being creatures of good and light." Padme answered quickly. "How do you describe them?"
Harry thought for a moment. "They come from Heaven. Usually dressed in white, with wings like a bird, also white. They can be male or female. They have a halo of light above their heads. Again… white. They are guardians and protectors who find those who are suffering and innocent and aid or comfort them.
"But they are also warriors who defend the weak and innocent."
Padme looked thoughtful. "They sound almost like the Jedi."
"They sound stupid." Came the petulant declaration from Anakin.
Both humans looked at the boy. Anakin seemed to wilt a little from the unimpressed look from Padme.
R2-D2 gave what could only be a raspberry to the boy.
It was only minutes later that Qui-Gon returned and nearly dragged them out. He refused to say anything until they were alone in an alley.
Considering the last alley Harry was in had two Dementors, he wasn't thrilled.
"He didn't have what you need?" Harry asked.
"He did. We simply did not have what he wanted in return. No matter how hard I tried to convince him." Qui-Gon muttered to himself.
"What does he want?" Padme asked.
"Trade. Precious metals, parts… slaves."
"Slaves?" Harry asked coldly.
"The boy you were talking to. He is a slave." Qui-Gon pointed out.
"Aren't you law enforcement? You can't actually condone slavery." Harry challenged.
"We are not law enforcement, Harry." Qui-Gon said gravely. "And we abhor slavery. We are peacekeepers. We carry weapons and will use them in the defence of ourselves and others. But the only power we hold with governments is that of respected advisors.
"We are far from the reaches of the civilised planets where our words have sway."
"It is disgusting." Padme spat.
Qui-Gon sighed. "Agreed. But, we have no power here. And we are stuck here without the means to repair the hyperdrive."
"Can't we strip the ship of stuff?" Harry asked.
"The cost of the replacement parts for the hyperdrive are worth as much as the ship itself." Qui-Gon shook his head.
"Then… why don't we trade the ship for a different one?"
Qui-Gon's eyebrow rose with curiosity. "Please, explain."
"Well, Padme says it's the Queen's personal ship. Compared to the ships we left behind and the ones we've seen leaving this planet… it looks pretty shiny.
"There has to be someone who we could trade the ship to for one with a working hyperdrive.
"Besides, they wouldn't be able to follow us as easily if we changed ships."
"He's right!" Padme exclaimed. "If we find the right people we can sell much of the ship's supplies as well. Enough that we might even be able to by the parts for the hyperdrive."
"The Troydarian won't be interested in the Queen's wardrobe." Qui-Gon pointed out in amusement.
"Who?" Harry asked.
"The one who owned the shop we were in."
"Oh. Isn't there a clothes shop on this planet?"
"They still won't accept our currency."
Harry rolled his eyes. "If we take clothes to a tailor, they will pay more for them than if we took them to… a book shop." He tried to think of what sort of shops might exist in this world.
"Harry is right." Padme stepped up to his side. "The ship is full of luxury items that, if sold to the right people, could net us enough to by the best ship on the planet."
"There is probably somewhere we can exchange your money for whatever they use here as well." Harry added.
Qui-Gon was a bit worried. Both Harry and Padme had made excellent suggestions, but why hadn't he thought of them himself? He had to admit, he was distracted by the darkness in the Force that he could feel pressing at the edge of his senses… and also the anomaly in front of him and the boy they had just left who was clearly exceptionally strong in the Force.
Qui-Gon had immediately contacted Obi-Wan and had him mobilise the crew of the ship into collecting and cataloguing anything that could possibly be sold. In the meantime, he led Padme, Harry and R2 in a search of the settlement's various merchants. He questioned each one about what they would be willing to buy and even managed to negotiate a few on the spot deals.
Towards the end of the day they headed back to the outskirts of the settlement to make another trek through the desert to the ship.
Harry was looking forward to a nice long shower.
Which was immediately put on hold as young Anakin came running up behind them. Harry cursed in his head.
"Where are you going?"
"Home." Harry sighed mournfully. "I have an appointment with a promised shower."
Harry was largely ignored.
"We must return to our ship." Qui-Gon answered the boy. "We-"
"You can't go now!" Anakin was horrified. "There's a sandstorm coming! It will rip you to pieces!"
To Harry's continued and compounded dismay, the wind had begun to whip up.
"Come with me. Hurry!"
The whole walk to Anakin's home, Harry had been trying to think up what spells he could have used to get through the storm. Nothing came to mind.
He was fairly grumpy as a result. He wasn't alone as R2 clearly wasn't happy.
They reached the igloo-styled sandstone home just as the sandstorm began to impede their vision. They were introduced to Anakin's mother, Shmi. That is to say, he introduced Padme.
He then dragged Padme off to see something in his room.
Harry was about to lean against a wall when R2 started nudging him to follow Padme.
That left Qui-Gon to explain everything to Shmi.
Harry and R2-D2 found Padme looking a bit bewildered as Anakin rambled on about his droid. The droid appeared to be turned off.
"Oh… it's you."
"Nice to see you too." Harry snorted at the grumpy nine-year-old when he was spotted. Harry stood next to Padme as Anakin pottered about. "So, should I tell Qui-Gon to let the Queen know she's about to lose a handmaiden?" Harry asked quietly.
Padme glared at him.
"Who's the new robot?" Harry quickly changed the subject.
"Anakin says he made him. His designation is C-3PO."
"Do they sell droids in kits then?" Harry asked curiously.
"They are manufactured and assembled in large factories. They are sold to consumers ready for service." She answered.
"Oh. He looks like some of the droids we saw in town today."
"Anakin probably salvaged parts from the shop he works at." Padme shrugged.
Harry tensed. "We need to talk to Qui-Gon." He said as he grabbed her hand and pulled her out of the small room.
"Hey! Where are you going?" Anakin was ignored.
"Qui-Gon, we might be in a bit of a pickle." Harry said as he marched up to the Jedi. "How do people become slaves on this planet?"
"Harry! You are being rude." Padme said heatedly.
"Look, Qui-Gon already told us that the kid is a slave, I'm guessing you are too, right, Ma'am?" He asked the woman respectfully.
She just nodded.
"Right, so, we are currently standing in a slave home which contains parts and goods stolen from their owner. Not exactly a good thing considering we want a low profile."
"We are not thieves, sir." Shmi said heatedly.
"And you have the money to afford all the parts for a functioning droid?"
"Of course not!"
"Then why is there one sitting in Anakin's room?"
"I- I- Anakin said it was alright." She finished weakly and with a bit of confusion.
"Shmi, did you initially tell Anakin that he was wrong to steal the parts?" Qui-Gon asked as he guided the woman to the table.
"I- I think so. But Anakin… he… he said it was…"
"Do not fret. I believe I know what has happened." Qui-Gon assured her. "Anakin is very strong in the Force." He explained to the woman and two teenagers. "I believe that he unwittingly used the Force to persuade you. It can happen in the very young when they are determined or emotional."
"Like mind control?" Harry asked.
"No, it is simply the ability to persuade someone. As Jedi we use it sparingly as it is seen as a violation of a person. But we do use it on planets like this one to keep the locals from interfering with our work without having to resort to violence."
"Alright, what do we do about our precarious situation?" Harry had experience with being called a thief and being caught with what might be considered contraband.
"We can only hope that the Troydarian doesn't come here before the storm passes." Qui-Gon frowned. "He is immune to Jedi mind tricks."
"Is that how you were trying to 'persuade' him to take Republic Credits?" Padme asked, clearly displeased.
"It is irrelevant." Qui-Gon brushed the topic away. "Harry, do you still have your cloak?"
Harry just nodded.
"Tonight, you will need to sleep under it with Padme in case something does happen. I will stand watch."
Padme looked outraged. Harry looked very uncomfortable with the idea. R2 just whistled in agreement.
Dinner was a tense affair.
Harry was having his first meal in this new world and he had no idea what he was eating. But he was used to having to eat the left-over scraps of his relatives, so it wasn't too hard.
He was also stuck in a rut, mentally speaking. He was trying to figure out how to find Sirius. He had run through every spell he had learnt in his five years of school and the only thing he could think of was divination.
Whilst Harry was running in circles in his own mind, Padme was having to deal with the demanding nature of Anakin. The boy was loud, obnoxious and liked to brag about his exploits. It didn't help that every time the wind banged something outside she would jump, thinking they were about to be discovered.
R2 was sitting in a corner, he was running on the bare minimum systems. The only additional utilities he had working were his proximity systems. He wanted to make sure his little flesh bags were safe.
He also didn't trust the little brat not to try and steal his parts.
Qui-Gon was a seemingly calm oasis in the home. Internally he was being a naughty little Jedi and enjoying Padme's discomfort. He considered it pay back for being saddled with her.
But eventually he remembered that Padme had been helpful. Without her input with Harry he would never have thought to sell the ship or its supplies. So, with that in mind he broke into the conversation and distracted Anakin.
Night eventually fell and Padme grabbed Harry stating she was tired and dragged him into Shmi's bedroom where the woman had offered her bed. R2 had just zipped in before she managed to shut the door.
"I thought we'd never escape." She sighed as she sat on the bed.
"Escape? Escape what?" Harry asked as he began to pull his cloak out of his pocket.
"Anakin!" She said heatedly. "He wouldn't leave me alone all evening! I have no idea how he managed to be so… annoying with a mother as sweet as Shmi."
"Probably because she is a slave and he has the ability to convince her to do what he wants." Harry shrugged. He draped the cloak over the end of the bed like a quilt. "Do you want the wall side?"
"Do you want to be closer to the door or the wall?" He gestured to the bed that was against a corner. It was clearly made for one and it certainly wasn't meant to be sturdy.
R2-D2 started whistling and chirping. He nudged at Harry.
"We really need a better method of talking." Harry smiled sadly at the little guy.
"Oh! I forgot; I have a droid translator." Padme said as she pulled a metal device off her belt. "He says you should take the side nearest the door so you can protect- oh." She blushed slightly. "He says you should take this side and I should take the wall side."
Harry chuckled. "Ah, once again I take up my duly appointed role of Meat Shield." He took off his jacket and placed it on the floor next to the bed. Then he removed his glasses. He looked at the blurry objects with worry.
"What's wrong?" Padme asked as she sat next to him.
"My glasses. I don't want to put them somewhere in case I forget and break them. I haven't seen anyone else wearing glasses and I don't have money to buy new ones."
"What do they do?"
"They let me see." He chuckled morbidly.
"You're blind?!" She asked as she waved a hand in front of his face.
Harry blinked at the intrusion. "No, but my eyes are bad. Everything is a big blur without them."
R2 rolled up and whistled.
Harry put his glasses back on and gestured to the device. "What's he saying?"
"Oh, here." She handed to him.
Harry looked at the metal device with rounded edges. It was about the size of one of Dudley's Gameboys. It had a black screen with orange symbols. It confirmed one of his fears that had bugged him since they reached Theed.
"I can't read this." He handed it back to Padme.
"Are your glasses not working?"
"No, I mean… I don't understand the writing. It is different to my language."
"But… you speak Galactic Basic."
"I call it English. I had no idea what the Troydarian was saying earlier."
"Neither could I. The language we are speaking is known by most species, even if they can't actually speak it. It's mainly used for trade.
"I promise to try and teach you some."
"Thanks." Harry had the look of the lost as he gazed down at the foreign symbols.
R2 whistled again.
"Oh, R2-D2 is offering to look after your glasses." She explained, reading the device.
"Really? I mean, that would be great, but you don't look like you have any pockets." Harry grinned.
R2 tilted forward and a large blue panel on his head slid open.
"That is so much cooler than pockets." Harry mused. "Ok, but remember that they are fragile. They are made of glass."
R2 made a reassuring noise.
Harry took off his glasses and handed them to Padme. "Could you put them in? I really can't see properly without them."
Harry had already tied his wand to the outside of his left forearm. It was within easy reach and not likely to be broken. He pulled it out and indicated for Padme to get on the bed and pull the cloak over them, then he cast the silencing spell.
R2-D2 immediately lost them, but he began running comparisons on his memory of the images of the bed before and after they had disappeared. He then noticed slight movement of the bed. He felt better knowing he could find them.
Under the cloak, Padme had turned to face the wall and was as close to it as possible. Harry was facing R2 and the door.
Padme half sat up. "What? Is there a problem?"
"I should have enlarged Qui-Gon's poncho, cast an imperturbable on it and then we could have gotten back to the ship through the sandstorm." He grumbled.
"Why are you thinking of this now?" She demanded. "You could have saved me from the boy's gawking!"
Harry sat there staring at her back as she viciously turned on her side away from him.
Harry just grumbled to himself as he lay back down.
When Harry awoke it was not because morning had broken.
It was, however, because a certain little brat had broken into the bedroom and was currently in a fight with R2-D2.
Harry was about to sit up and deal with the little thief when he realised he was being held down by a sleeping Padme. Apparently she had repositioned in the night.
"Padme, wake up." He nudged her.
The girl opened her eyes blearily. But she woke up quicker when she realised she had cuddled into Harry during the night.
"Stay under the cloak." Harry instructed before he quickly slid out himself. "What the devil do you think you are doing?"
Anakin jumped and screamed at the angry growl.
The door to the bedroom burst open and Qui-Gon and Shmi rushed in.
"Anakin, why are you in here?" Shmi asked, confused.
"He was attacking R2." Harry was glaring angrily at the boy.
"I was not! I was looking for Padme." Anakin shot back.
"In the middle of the night?" Qui-Gon asked with a hint of disbelief.
R2 was still angry and started making some rather harsh noises before a small compartment opened up and a sparking rod poked out threateningly at Anakin.
Anakin backed up hastily.
"Outside, Anakin. Now." Shmi said tersely.
Qui-Gon backed out behind them, pulling the door closed.
Padme was instantly sitting up. "I can't believe he just barged in here!"
"He's obviously used to getting what he wants." Harry shrugged as he fumbled for his glasses from R2's compartment.
"But he's a slave! He should be used to getting nothing! You've seen Shmi, you've seen how su-"
"I know how slaves act."
She was shocked at the coldness in Harry's voice.
"Ask R2 if he is perfectly ok. Did Anakin hurt him?"
Padme paused for a moment before R2 started to whistle and hum. She grabbed the translator. "He says he is fine. He also says that Anakin was trying to open him up."
"Like I said before… a thief." Harry said with quiet anger. "R2, do you need to re-charge or power down to conserve energy?"
"He says he can last for eight more days before his reserves run low." Padme translated.
"Are you good to stand guard or do you want to take turns?"
Padme giggled as she read R2's translated beeps. "I think he's offended you had to ask."
Harry knelt down in front of the droid. "You and Padme are my first friends here. Don't forget… 'kay?"
R2's 'eye' bobbed in a nod and he gently nudged the human.
Morning was tense.
The storm had broken outside but inside was heavy and oppressive.
Shmi was clearly conflicted but angry, Anakin was sulking and Qui-Gon was frowning.
It didn't help that R2 practically growled at the boy when the trio entered.
Padme's glare wasn't much better... but it did seem to make Anakin quail slightly.
"We should leave immediately." Harry said as he walked up to Qui-Gon.
"Whilst I agree in principle, there are complications." Qui-Gon said slowly. "Anakin needs to be removed from this environment and be properly trained in the ways of the Force."
"Well we can always come back after… well, after." Harry didn't want to mention they were trying to smuggle a queen out of the system. "Besides, we can come back with local currency and try and buy Shmi and Anakin from the bug."
"Returning may not be possible for some time. Also, there is a… a darkness in the Force. We cannot afford to hope that it will not sense the boy."
"So, we need to go ship hunting and find a way to get a lot of money."
Everyone turned to look at Anakin. Nobody looked impressed with his outburst, despite his bright smile.
"I do not believe this is something we should leave to chance." Padme shook her head.
"But I can win! I'm the best racer in the system!" Anakin argued.
"Does everyone race fairly?" Harry scoffed. "I've been watching these people. They cheat, lie, steal… how many times have you won?"
Anakin scowled as he looked at his feet, his cheeks burning. "Never."
"And I won't allow it." Shmi said firmly. "I hate when you race, Ani. It kills me each time."
R2 started whistling and bumping Padme.
She pulled out the translator. She read it and seemed surprised and impressed. "R2 says that if Harry can fix our technology then he can trade the service for Anakin and Shmi. He just has to fix everything in the Troydarian's shop."
"I suppose." Harry mused. "But that is a lot of stuff."
"Please explain." Qui-Gon requested curiously.
"My abilities." Harry said vaguely with a subtle glance to Anakin. He didn't want to advertise his magic.
"Harry did some impressive work on R2-D2 after… earlier." Padme added. "I suggested he try to fix our hyperdrive."
"I can fix it! I can fix anything!"
"Hush, Ani." Shmi scolded.
"We should probably discuss this on the way back to the ship." Harry interjected quickly. "Missus Skywalker, I won't say goodbye as I have a suspicion we will see each other again soon enough." Harry said as he offered his hand to the older woman.
Shmi smiled tiredly. "I hope so."
And that smile, that declaration of hope was what caused Harry to make it his mission to free Shmi… and her son… if he had to… because he wished he didn't.
They didn't talk as they traversed the desert to the ship. Padme and Harry had both learnt the hard way that it was too hot to talk and left them parched when they initially arrived at the settlement.
When they arrived at the ship they found Obi-Wan and one of the Queen's handmaidens organising various crates at the loading doors.
"Master, were you able to get the parts?"
"No. But apparently Harry may be able to fix the ship with his magic."
Qui-Gon had an amused look as his Padawan scowled at the word magic. He turned to the two teenagers. "Padme, take Harry to the ships engineer and have them try his magic. Obi-Wan will continue to organise the items for sale in case it doesn't work and I will inform the Queen of our progress."
"Her Majesty will want to see me as well." Padme said firmly.
"I can go and find Captain Panaka on my own." Harry assured them.
Qui-Gon and Padme were only twenty-minutes into the briefing when the ships engines started to hum.
"Harry Potter is extremely gifted, it would seem." The Queen mused with a smile.
Seconds later Captain Panaka burst in. "Your Majesty, we can leave at your command." He beamed. "Harry Potter has completely repaired the ship."
"Excellent. But it seems we might be delayed in departing. Padme and Master Jinn have informed me of two slaves they believe to be in need of rescuing."
"Your Majesty, whilst a noble goal, it is foolhardy and reckless as it will cast us further into the light and our enemies will discover us much quicker."
"Agreed. But Master Jinn has made a compelling argument. We will be preventing the rise of a possible Sith."
Panaka scowled. Nobody wanted another Sith. He then straightened and addressed the Queen. "If this is our course then I must insist that we follow a suggestion of young Harry's. He has pointed out that our ship is quite distinct and will attract a lot of attention. He has recommended that we sell as much cargo as possible and purchase a new ship, second hand or otherwise. We will then send this ship to lead any pursuers on a… I believe he called it a 'Wild Goose Chase'.
"A fool's errand, if you will."
"As much as I loathe the thought of losing my ship, it is probably for the best."
Panaka and another of the handmaidens were dispatched to attempt to sell the ship's supplies. Padme had found Harry and told him that they would be following his idea and the two of them would accompany Qui-Gon to try and buy Shmi and Anakin's freedom.
Before that, the Queen had requested a private meeting with just him and Padme.
Harry was pretty nervous as he stood next to Padme before the ebony clad monarch. Padme had changed her clothes and was wearing a lightweight red shirt and a long red skirt.
"Harry, whilst he has clearly served us well, perhaps your small friend here would be better served in returning to you." The Queen said in her deep voice.
Harry looked to the black dog that was sitting happily at the side of her throne as she gently ran her fingers through its fur.
"Erm… I didn't even know he was still here. I thought he would have turned back into a hat by now." Harry scratched the back of his head.
"He is a marvel. One of the sweetest creatures I have met." The Queen smiled fondly at the dog.
"I'm not entirely sure I could get him to leave you." Harry winced. "When I 'made' him, I did it with the intent to protect you. If you think about it then it would probably be best if he stayed with you. Back home, dogs make good guards." Harry chuckled. "They are often called 'Man's Best Friend'."
The Queen looked conflicted as she looked between the dog and Padme and Harry.
Harry knelt down and called to the dog. "Here boy. Come here."
The dog simply looked to the Queen. The Queen nodded sadly and the dog padded up to Harry, sniffed him, then Padme, and then returned back to the Queen and gave a small happy bark.
"He's yours." Harry shrugged. "For as long as the spell lasts."
*Chapter 3*: Chapter 3
It was a melancholy Harry that walked beside Padme as they marched back into the settlement. R2-D2 was again trailing behind having requested to accompany Harry. Harry had impressed Padme and the Queen when he had cast colour changing charms on Padme's clothes so she wouldn't stand out. Her shirt and skirt now matched the colour of the sandstone buildings.
"You seem sad again." She said quietly as she moved closer for privacy.
"The dog. I made him after Sirius, my godfather. He could transform into a dog just like that." Harry explained. "And now I am millions of miles away from where I landed and from where I might have found clues to find him."
"As soon as it is safe to return to Naboo we will. The Queen will ensure you have all the help you could possibly need to find him." She promised.
Harry gave her a tired, wry smile. "Are you supposed to make promises for the Queen."
Padme just blushed.
When they reached the shop, Qui-Gon was surprised when Harry pushed past him and stood face to face with the hovering alien. "Show me the most expensive thing in your shop that is broken."
Qui-Gon shared a look with Padme, but she was clearly just as confused.
"Thee can'ta afford it boy." The Troydarian sneered.
"Yeah? How much is it?" Harry pressed.
"Fifteen hundred wupiupi."
"How much to buy the Skywalkers?"
The bug shot back a foot in shock.
"I don't have all day. How much?" Harry pressed.
"Ten hundred." The bug stuttered.
"Here's the deal, I'll fix your most expensive item and you will give me the Skywalkers in return. Take me to it."
Watto, the Troydarian, seemed to regain his senses and moved forward into Harry's space so they were nose to snout.
He was shocked when the human simply put a finger on his snout and pushed him back.
"Respect my personal space." Harry said simply. "Now, let's go."
"Wha'? No! What'a I get if thee fail?" Watto blustered.
"This isn't a bet, idiot. It's a business transaction." Harry snarled.
"Services for goods." Padme interjected confidently. "We are offering to help you make a healthy sum."
"For two slaves?" Watto sneered.
"The cost of which will be covered as you already stated their price and the price of the part we will repair for you. I'm sure you'll raise the cost of the part when you try to sell it." Padme rolled her eyes.
"The boy could make me millions. He fixa anything." Watto said as he floated higher smugly.
"Then why has he not fixed your most expensive part?" Qui-Gon entered the conversation. "However, perhaps you would be more agreeable if Harry fixed your two most expensive items. That would leave you with the option to purchase a droid more suited to the work than a child with clumsy fingers."
"And a terrible attitude." Harry griped. "What's broken in here?" He gestured to the shop counter and the junk strewn around the place.
"Here." He caught the object that Qui-Gon had tossed to him. It was a cube with wires hanging out.
Harry turned his back to the Troydarian and discreetly palmed his wand.
"What he doing?" Watto demanded.
"Qui-Gon, catch." Harry turned and tossed it back.
Qui-Gon inspected the device and it lit up with a low white light and a hum. "You now have a quality navigation core worth more than five thousand wupiupi ready to sell." He said as he handed it to Watto.
Harry and Qui-Gon moved to stand with Padme and R2 as they watched Watto take the device and plug it into a socket behind the counter. Watto was mumbling to himself in clear disbelief.
"A trick!" He eventually snarled at the group. "It must be."
"One way or another we are leaving with the Skywalkers." Harry glared back. "You get to decide if you get compensated or if you 'compensate' us."
"Thee threatening me?" Watto demanded as he flew up to Harry. "I take thee to the Hutts, maybe."
"And tell them what?" Qui-Gon asked calmly. "That you turned down a very profitable business proposal?"
"Who are the 'Hutts'?" Harry asked curiously.
"They control the majority of trade in this sector." Qui-Gon explained. "They are a very powerful crime syndicate. They specialise in slavery, smuggling and bounty hunting."
"So… if Mister Watto here went to them, they would probably kill him, take his business and slaves and then accept the same deal we made him?" Harry asked.
Qui-Gon was definitely amused by Harry's hypothesis. "It is a… possibility."
Of course it was more likely they would attempt to capture Harry and enslave him to use his powers for themselves. He kept silent about that though.
He was trying to learn as much as he could about the boy through his actions as he was unable to use the Force.
"Maybe I take thee to Hutts. Maybe I tell them what you can do. Maybe they pay me for bringing you." Watto smirked.
Qui-Gon sighed. He had hoped that the Troydarian didn't have that much intelligence.
Harry stood up straight. "Right, Padme, Qui-Gon, R2, if you will excuse Mister Watto and myself, we need to have a private conversation."
Harry quickly drew his wand and petrified the hovering alien. Watto fell to the floor with a thud. "We'll be back in a few." Harry informed them calmly as he levitated Watto to the junk yard out back.
Qui-Gon made to stop him but Padme held her arm out to her side, in front of him and R2-D2 zipped in front.
"I cannot stand by whilst he tortures someone." Qui-Gon scowled.
Padme looked bemused. "I do not believe Harry Potter would ever torture someone. I believe he merely intends to… 'persuade' him. Much like when you attempted use your powers to persuade Watto yesterday."
Qui-Gon didn't look happy. But he also knew he had no place to argue.
He was more than a little surprised when Harry marched back in and handed him a data card.
Non-plussed, he pulled out his reader and inserted it.
"This is a bill of sale for Shmi and Anakin." Qui-Gon's eyebrows were lost somewhere above his hairline.
"Great, so it's all legal?"
"So it seems." Qui-Gon frowned as he ran various tests, even sending a copy back to the ship for analysis.
"Cool! Let's go pack them up and we can get back to the ship. Hopefully Captain Panaka has found a new ship." Harry said as he marched out of the shop.
Qui-Gon was torn and confused. He wanted to know how the boy had managed to get a voluntarily signed deal with the stubborn Troydarian. Unfortunately, he couldn't ask Watto as Padme and R2 were pushing him out of the door.
Back out in the junkyard, Watto was pinned to the hull of an old shuttle by invisible bonds. He was torn between anger and greed as he surveyed the numerous expensive items the boy had repaired from his captive position.
He had no intention of trying to turn the human over to the Hutts. Not when it had promised to come back and kill him if he did. Even Watto had no intention of trying to double-cross the Invisible Assassin.
Harry was too efficient.
They hadn't been in the shop for more than twenty minutes so Panaka's men hadn't had a chance to find the right traders. This meant that Qui-Gon dragged Harry, Padme and R2-D2 along to collect the Skywalkers.
"What's a pod-racer?" Harry asked tiredly as he sat at the table waiting for Shmi to finish packing everything she wanted. She had a simple bag containing her three changes of clothes.
Anakin had been demanding that he get to take everything. Harry really didn't want to risk carting around stolen goods.
"It's a large speeder used in high speed races. I doubt there will be room on the ship." Qui-Gon explained.
"And I don't want him to have it at all." Shmi was not pleased.
"But I made it!" Anakin whined.
"Listen you little snot face." Harry stood up quickly and stalked towards Anakin. "Your mum's word is final. The only person who gets to override her is me. And that's just because I own your annoying little arse till we get out of this system.
"Now finish packing and keep your mouth shut before you get all of us in trouble."
"You're not the boss of me!"
Harry's wand whipped out and Anakin was suddenly as stiff as a board. Harry quickly stowed his wand before lifting the boy up and laying him down on the table.
"I'll consider releasing him when we get to the ship." Harry said grumpily. "R2, Padme, can you come and help me sort out the brat's room?"
The pair followed the sullen wizard into the next room leaving Shmi and Qui-Gon to stare and poke at the immobile, but clearly conscious Anakin.
"I don't know what help I can be, Harry." Padme frowned as she looked at all the junk in the room.
"You can translate for R2-D2." He said as he patted the droid. "R2, can you talk with Padme and decide what we should take?"
The droid whistled and turned to the handmaiden.
Padme just laughed as she read the translation. "He said 'everything'."
Harry picked a bolt off a nearby surface. "Everything?"
R2 gave a sad little whine.
"Get all the books, pictures, anything with information on it." Harry instructed.
R2 turned to Padme.
"He says we should take the protocol droid." Padme told Harry. "They are very useful."
"They look very heavy."
"Can you repair it? It can walk on its own then."
"He says there is a button on its chest just below the neck."
It took Padme's help but they eventually found the button and the humanoid droid, that looked like it had been flayed, sat up… with one glowing eye.
"How do you do? I am C-3PO. Human Cyborg Relations. How might I serve you?" It said somewhat stiltedly.
"I'm Harry, this is Padme and R2-D2. We are relocating so you need to stand up and get ready to move out."
The droid swivelled on the workbench stiffly and then stood up. It stood so straight, with its forearms out that Harry was worried it would keep tipping over.
"Oh dear... I seem to be missing one of my eyes."
There was a whistle and C-3PO looked down to see R2-D2 holding the missing item in small claw protruding from his body.
"Oh, thank you." He said as he popped the eye into its socket.
R2 started whistling and beeping a bit harshly at C-3PO.
"Naked? What do you –My goodness! My parts are showing! This is terrible!"
"Wait, you can understand R2?" Harry asked quickly.
"Of course, Sir. I am fluent in over six million languages and dialects." He said proudly.
Harry turned to Padme. "He's definitely coming."
Twenty minutes later and they were ready to move out. Anakin had been released by Harry… and then silenced as soon as the boy started to argue.
C-3PO was now wearing one of Shmi's cloaks to hide his 'nudity'.
Obi-Wan had called Qui-Gon and they were headed to the space port where Panaka's men had secured a decent ship.
"At least it doesn't stand out like the Queen's ship." Harry nodded approvingly as he looked at the grey metal ship. It had yellow highlights and a bit of red.
"A VCX-100 light freighter." Qui-Gon informed them. "Obi-Wan has informed me that this one has undergone some considerable modifications since it left the Corellian shipyards."
Harry noted that he seemed amused.
"Welcome aboard The Ghost." Captain Panaka greeted them at the loading ramp. "Now that you have returned with R2-D2 we can finally depart. R2, please head to the computer core. We need you to help run navigation and the hyperdrive."
The droid turned to Padme and Harry with a few beeps.
"R2 wishes to know if these orders are ok or do you need him?" C-3PO translated.
Harry shared a confused look with Padme. "I guess?"
"Go on R2. We will see you later." Padme smiled at the droid.
R2 spun on the spot and whizzed off into the ship.
"A colourful character, for a droid." Panaka mused. He then turned to Padme. "Her Majesty wishes to see you as soon as possible." He turned to Qui-Gon and Harry as Padme nodded to them and left. "Due to the limited quarters, we have billeted in the cargo hold. I trust you will impart the importance of not wandering the ship to your guests."
And with that he turned and left.
"Have fun." Harry said as he patted Qui-Gon's arm. "I will be with R2. 3PO, you should come with me."
"Of course, Sir."
Qui-Gon chuckled as the boy calmly walked into the ship with the droid following at a waddle. Then he turned to Shmi and Anakin and frowned.
Harry had forgotten to let Anakin speak again.
Harry was in the ship's computer core room with R2-D2 and C-3PO. He was being taught all about hyperspace and how the hyperdrive worked.
The Ghost had a Class 0.5 hyperdrive. Apparently this was quite fast. The larger the number of class the slower the drive. Large ships, like the ones blockading Naboo, had class 1 or higher. This made them slower than ships like The Ghost.
Under R2's guidance, Harry had brought the ship to peak efficiency by repairing a few worn parts.
A few hours later, Harry was called to a private meeting with the Queen and Padme. Harry was once again nervous at being stood in front of royalty.
Padme was once again in her reddish robes and the other handmaidens were arrayed around the throne. Padme was standing to the left of the throne.
"Harry, the gift you gave us has caused a bit of a problem." Padme began as she indicated the dog, still sitting happily to the right of the throne.
Harry turned red and grimaced. "I'm really sorry. I forgot to tell you, but back home dogs tend be taken on walks so they can… do their business?"
The ladies had no idea what he was talking about.
"Use the bathroom?" Harry tried again.
The girls blushed and giggled. They were silenced by a look from Padme.
"No Harry. That is not a problem. We have pets on Naboo and we take good care of them." Padme assured him. "The problem…" She trailed off, struggling to think of how to explain. In the end the Queen placed a hand on her arm. Padme just nodded.
The Queen stood smoothly. "I am not the Queen, Harry Potter." She said, her voice absent of the deep tones she had used before. "I am the Queen's bodyguard. I pose as the Queen to provide a decoy. Padme Naberrie is the true Queen Amidala."
That said she turned and knelt before Padme, the handmaidens following suit.
Harry looked at Padme. She seemed extremely worried.
"We didn't want to deceive you, Harry." She practically pleaded. "But it is just how we keep me safe from assassination."
Padme watched as Harry seemed to struggle between finding something to say and trying to figure things out.
"You're the Queen?"
"And you're the bodyguard?"
The 'Queen' stood and nodded.
"Ok… so whose idea was it to send the unarmed monarch of a planet into a town known as a place of criminals, slavery and all bad things?"
"I told you." Came the slight sneer from the black clad girl.
Padme just glared at her.
"How is Padfoot a problem?" Harry interrupted the glaring.
"What?" They both asked.
"Padfoot." Harry gestured to the dog.
"Is that his name?" The fake queen asked.
"Yeah… what's your name though?"
"This is Sabe." Padme smirked as her decoy rubbed the dog's head and cooed. "The problem is that Sabe can't continue to pretend to be me if we can't get… Padfoot, to follow me as well."
Harry scratched the back of his head thoughtfully. "I suppose I could try and make a second dog... I just don't know if it will last as long as Padfoot. Even Padfoot shouldn't be here still- oh bollocks… I owe Captain Panaka a new hat!"
The girls all laughed at Harry's look of terror.
"I am sure we can find a new cap somewhere for him." Padme assured him.
"Alright… then I'll need something to create a new dog with. A cap would be preferable but I can try with something else."
Padme sent one of her handmaidens out to find a new cap. Harry gestured for Padme to a corner so he could speak privately.
"Am I going to be executed?"
"Whatever for?" She asked in surprise.
"Remember how we spent last night? In the past on my planet, I could be tortured and killed for less!"
Padme managed to blush and giggle at the same time. "That was perfectly innocent. If anything, you would be awarded a medal for protecting me."
"I know that, you know that. But what will your people say?" Harry pressed.
Padme stood up straighter and primly informed him: "It is none of their business. If they do find out they will be forced to reveal how they managed to commit treasonous acts by eavesdropping and spying."
She didn't give Harry a chance to respond as she turned away, ending the conversation.
Harry hoped she was right.
Twenty minutes later and there were two Padfoots in the room.
"You know, I've never been taught how to do this properly?" Harry sighed as he watched the girls shower the animals with affection. "I've seen it done, but I don't think I would have been taught it properly for a year or so."
"Can all your people do this?" One of the handmaidens asked.
"Most of the ones with magic, yes. But it is supposed to be difficult and require a lot of power. I've made small creatures before, but never something as big as those two."
The two Padfoots seemed to recognise each other. Harry figured they were probably brothers. Family was always on Harry's mind these days. He had been constantly worrying about Sirius since he broke out of Hogwarts to invade the Ministry.
"R2 says we will reach the planet Coruscant in two days." Harry said.
"Good. Hopefully we can bring our case to the senate quickly and free my people." Padme said fiercely.
"If you don't need me, I'll be going. I want to tell Shmi that she and Anakin are free."
"Oh, I'll come with you."
"Anakin will be there."
She balked. "I'll see if I can find Shmi alone later."
Due to the restrictions on the crew quarters and the fact that the cargo hold was likely to be crowded, Harry had opted to huddle in a corner of the computer core room and catch some sleep.
R2 had pretty much called Harry's reasoning 'bullshit'. He wasn't wrong, Harry just didn't want to deal with Anakin. He had managed to get Shmi alone and tell her that she and her son where now free people.
Harry had had to deal with a crying woman… he had not enjoyed it.
Fortunately, Qui-Gon had sensed the woman's emotional upheaval and rescued Harry from the horrors of damp shoulders.
"What are you doing down there?"
"OW!" Harry nearly sobbed as he rubbed his sore head.
"That's what you get for sleeping in a small space like that."
Harry looked up blearily. "Who's there?"
R2 beeped a few times.
"Your glasses, Master Harry." C-3PO said as he bent down holding the offered items.
Harry put them on to see one of the handmaidens standing at the door to the room. He didn't recognise them. "Sabe?"
"How could you tell?" The girl asked with a frown.
"You aren't one of the others and you're the only one I haven't seen… not without all that make up… plus, you have a tell." He pointed at the dog next to her.
She just smirked. "I guess this means that Padme and I will have to spend a lot more time together until she steps down from the throne."
"Steps down? Why would she do that?" Harry asked as he backed up against the wall to sit.
"Usually it only happens if a new Queen is elected, there-"
"Elected? How do you elect a queen?" Harry was completely confused.
Sabe giggled. "In the usual manner. The people cast their vote. The monarch only serves two terms in office."
"I think we have a different definition of 'monarch'." Harry sighed. "Back home, my queen has been on the throne for over fifty years. When she dies her son will become king. The monarchy is… hereditary."
"There are many different types of governments in the galaxy." Sabe allowed. "Now, why were you sleeping under there?"
"Because I was tired."
Clearly Sabe was not impressed. "There are plenty of beds and Padme said you wanted a shower."
"I was told the crew quarters are off limits and there is no way I am sleeping in the same room as Anakin."
"Ah. I haven't met the young boy who is attempting to steal My Lady's heart." She grinned.
"Yeah… 'steal'." Harry snorted. "You might want to do inventory of the ship's stores before you let him off. He has sticky fingers."
Sabe didn't know the reference, but she understood the intent. "Anyway, Her Majesty has ordered one of the crew quarters be reserved for you. It comes with a fresher unit."
Harry didn't get the reference, but he understood the meaning. "Well… I'm really grateful, but, maybe you should offer it to Shmi? She is the only other female onboard."
"You should probably talk to Padme."
It turned out that Her Majesty, Queen Padme Amidala Naberrie, had no issues with Shmi taking one of the other cabins. As long as Anakin wasn't there. She didn't want to risk a repeat performance of the previous night. Especially as R2 would be stuck in the computer core for a while.
A meeting was arranged with Qui-Gon, Shmi and Padme to discuss the situation. A reluctant Harry was stood in a corner. He didn't want anything to do with the Skywalkers. It wasn't because he didn't like them, he just didn't want there to be any misunderstandings about their previous relationship as master and slaves. He still remembered Dobby jumping at every opportunity to help him.
Qui-Gon had offered to watch over Anakin so Shmi could enjoy the privacy of the cabin and Padme wouldn't have to worry about uninvited guests.
With that sorted, Harry gratefully slipped into the bed he had been assigned.
He was rudely awakened less than an hour later.
Alarms were blaring all over the ship.
He should have skipped his shower and just gone to bed.
Outside, two of the handmaidens were standing stiffly with blasters in hand. Panaka was storming out of the cockpit.
"Potter, with me." He barked.
Harry was a little peeved at being ordered around, but he followed anyway.
Panaka led him to the computer core where Qui-Gon was having an intense conversation with C-3PO and R2-D2 whilst Obi-Wan had a firm grip on a red-faced Anakin.
"Turn off the alarms." Panaka ordered. R2 quickly complied. "Master Jinn, report."
Qui-Gon raised an eyebrow at being addressed so, but began. "We were awoken by the alarm and followed the Force to find R2-D2 attempting to fend off the boy."
Harry frowned as he saw the scowl Anakin sent the older man.
"He was attempting to sabotage the ship?" Panaka demanded.
"I was getting 3PO!" Anakin said defensively.
"You were told to stay in the assigned areas." Qui-Gon reminded him.
"Master Harry, if I may, R2 informed me that Mister Skywalker was attempting to access my processing core whilst I was powered down. R2 says that he doubts Mister Skywalker is telling the truth as my power switch is far more accessible than my processors.
"R2 has speculated that Mister Skywalker was attempting to reprogram my loyalty sub-routines away from you."
Harry stared at the tall 'naked' droid. "What?"
"He was attempting to steal the droid from you." Panaka stated, glaring at the boy.
"Erm… I own you?" Harry looked at 3PO.
"Of course. As part of the slave contract, Miss Skywalker informed me I was payment for their release from your service."
"No one told me."
Panaka pulled out a communicator and requested that someone bring Shmi to the cargo hold. In the meantime, everyone but R2 and 3PO relocated to the hold themselves.
What followed was Shmi quietly laying into Anakin. It ended with Shmi apologising to everyone else.
Harry escorted Shmi back to her cabin where she apologised for not explaining the situation with C-3PO earlier.
"I'm sorry, I'm just not comfortable with owning anybody." Harry said as he fidgeted in the cabin. "You aren't the first slaves I've rescued."
Shmi smiled softly at him. "Hardly surprising as a former slave yourself." Harry's face went blank. "When you've been a slave all your life you can recognise other slaves."
"I wasn't technically a slave." Harry said slowly.
"I… nobody 'owned' me. I lived with relatives… I-"
"Come sit." She patted the bed. "Tell me your story. The least I can do for the man who gave me my freedom."
Harry reluctantly sat, but he told her everything. About his parents and Voldemort. His cupboard. The abuse. The work.
The only thing that really shocked Shmi, was Harry's age.
It was two hours later that Shmi backed out of her cabin, leaving the exhausted boy sleeping on her bed.
Harry was fairly embarrassed when he realised he had fallen asleep in Shmi's room. Shmi, had waved off his apologies and said he should come talk to her whenever he needed to.
Harry was dragged from the computer core by Sabe. She had relieved the pilot and said she was going to teach Harry to fly the ship as it would help him get a start on learning to read Galactic Basic.
Harry instantly discovered a terrifying truth. He was an idiot compared to the average person in this universe. They had an understanding of maths and space that he thought only the smartest people on Earth could achieve.
Sabe seemed to realise that Harry couldn't grasp the intricacies of how the hyperdrive and hyperspace worked, so she stuck to teaching him the ship's controls. He didn't have any trouble actually piloting the ship, but he would never be able to plot a course through hyperspace.
*Chapter 4*: Chapter 4
The following day they reached the planet of Coruscant. Harry was instructed to land the ship under the direction of the Queen's pilot.
"And you've never flown before?" The pilot asked as Harry leant back from the controls. "Rookies usually scrape the landing feet. I'm still not convinced we have touched down as I didn't feel anything."
"I have never flown anything with an engine." Harry wiped his brow.
Ric Olie, the pilot, left the final checks to his co-pilot as he led Harry out of the cockpit. They quickly met the Queen and her entourage at the loading ramps.
Sabe was currently the one under the makeup.
"We've landed your Majesty." Ric reported. "Mister Potter brought us down like a pro. He could use some more practice… but he certainly has a gift."
"I didn't even feel us touch down." Obi-Wan said in awe. "Are we sure he isn't-"
"Quiet, Obi-Wan." Qui-Gon admonished his Padawan.
"We would appreciate it if you would arrange some more flight time." The Queen inclined her head to Ric.
Ric smiled and bowed. "I have very little to do until your personal cruiser arrives. It would be a pleasure."
"Excellent. Now we must work quickly to see our people free." She said.
Ric straightened and nodded.
It was daytime in the area they had landed. Bright and sunny. There were two older men waiting on the landing pad, surrounded by guards.
Harry was a bit lost as the Queen was greeted by the two men. One of them was a chancellor and the other a senator. He knew Americans had senators and the British had chancellors… he had no idea what either of them did.
He was surprised when he heard his name being mentioned.
"-suggestions have allowed us to arrive so quickly and he has gifted myself and my handmaiden with these two exquisite creatures. Harry Potter is to be considered a part of our entourage, a close friend and a hero of Naboo."
Harry was fairly certain he was turning red.
"The ship that brought us is to be registered in his name and considered his property. Please see to it that it is assigned diplomatic status."
The senator looked a bit put out by that.
"Of course, Your Majesty." The Chancellor smiled. "I will forward the paperwork once I get back to my office."
The Queen turned and moved off towards the building nearby, Rabe, another of the handmaidens, hooked her elbow through Harry's and guided him after them.
He sent a look to Qui-Gon, but the man just nodded.
Harry was led to a lush office where Rabe led him to stand with her at the side. Eirtae, another handmaiden was stood slightly behind the Queen who was sat in a large chair whilst the senator, a man named Palpatine, paced before her.
Harry was surprised when Padme left with her final two handmaidens, Yane and Sache.
Palpatine was half briefing and half complaining. He sounded like he was trying to start a rebellion by bringing down the Chancellor that had greeted them.
"Harry, what is your opinion?"
Harry now knew how the deer felt when it saw the headlights. "Erm… I don't think I-"
"Please, we value your input." The Queen urged gently.
Harry sighed but stepped forward. "I honestly don't know anything. I don't know why you are being invaded in the first place. I guess… I guess I would say that if this chancellor guy is a friend and supporter, don't stab him in the back. Support him. Find out the truth behind the rumours of corruption."
"Your counsel is sound, Harry Potter." The Queen nodded. "We will support the Chancellor as he has supported us.
"With regards to the reasons for the invasion, the Trade Federation claims they are protesting the recent taxation of trade zones that were previously exempt. They say they are blockading Naboo in retaliation."
"Do blockades usually involve invasions?" Harry thought that sounded odd.
"No, they do not." Palpatine said stiffly.
"Did Naboo support the taxation?"
"Senator Palpatine was integral to the negotiations between the Federation and the Republic."
"So these people are lying. Why would the other planets believe them?"
The meeting ended there with the Queen declaring she needed to rest before the meeting before the senate the following day. Harry had been dragged along to the Queen's private rooms where he was met by Padme.
"Thank you for your help, Harry. I'm sorry I wasn't there personally, I just find it is more efficient to listen in and offer input whilst I can research.
"Thanks to your suggestion I have tasked some of my people and the Jedi to investigate the allegations of corruption against the Chancellor."
"Erm… you're welcome?"
Padme just laughed.
"About the ship-"
"I know, I'm sorry I sprung it on you like that, but I wanted to surprise you." She gave a sheepish smile. "Your help on Naboo and Tatooine really sped things up.
"Qui-Gon told us what he knew about how you are searching for Sirius and that he will offer to help you find him, but you will need a way of getting around the galaxy."
"I don't have any money to pay for fuel and stuff. I'm wearing everything I have." Harry pointed out.
Padme looked a little shy. "Remember when we had you declared a part of our entourage? We weren't expecting you to, but, we were hoping you would make it official. You wouldn't have to travel everywhere with us, but if you could respond to our call if we need you… but we would love to have you with us… always."
Padme was blushing and Harry wasn't sure why.
"I guess… it's not like I have anywhere to start, apart from Naboo, when it comes to searching for Sirius. I don't have any education or training to do anything else and I don't think I can get back to Earth."
"So you'll stay with us?" She asked, looking up through her eyelashes hopefully.
"Yeah. I'll stay with you for as long as you need me."
Harry stiffened as Padme hugged him. It didn't help that the handmaidens were quietly cheering and celebrating.
Harry woke up the following day in the most comfortable bed he had ever been in. Padme had insisted he take one of the spare rooms in her apartment that would normally be used for family. Padme, like him, was an orphan now, her father having passed on a few years prior. Her only family was her older sister.
The previous night Harry had made another big black dog for another handmaiden. Apparently all of them were close friends and Sabe had pointed out that if they all had the dogs they could still blend in with one another easily.
This morning he was being taken before the Jedi Council by Qui-Gon. Rabe, who now had her own dog, was to accompany him on behalf of the Queen. Padme would be stuck in a chair all morning as she became Queen Amidala. It was a long and arduous process that involved a lot of makeup.
Padme had begged Harry to accompany her to the senate that afternoon.
Harry regretted giving them all dogs that could look up at him so soulfully.
The hissed name was like a curse from the small green alien in robes like Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan. He was glaring at Rabe's dog.
Rabe was glaring back. Her dog was trying to get between the hostile green alien and his mistress and was growling dangerously.
"Dead, you were." The alien said as he hopped from his cushion, the other Jedi were shocked. "Surprised, I am. Should not be."
"You can talk to dogs? You know Sirius Black? Where is he?" Harry demanded.
The green alien blinked and looked at Harry as though just realising he was there.
"Hey!" Harry knocked the gnarled stick across the room as it was poked in his knee.
Several of the seated Jedi were immediately on their feet with their light swords in hand.
"Peace!" The alien said sharply. The Jedi relaxed their stance slightly but did not put the swords away. "Your name. Harry James Potter?"
"Yes! Please, where is Sirius?" Harry begged.
The old alien sagged sadly. "Sorry, I am. Too late you are. Long ago did Black die."
Rabe quickly moved forward to catch Harry as he fell to his knees.
The alien placed an aged hand gently on Harry's cheek. "Spoke of you often, he did. Loved you. Knew you would come."
Harry was crying softly.
"Master Jedi, when did Sirius Black die and how did you know him?" Rabe asked on Harry's behalf. Her dog was nuzzling against Harry's face.
The old creature took Harry's hand and pulled. Rabe helped him stand. He led him to the chairs and sat him in the one that the tall, black, human, Jedi had sat in.
"Seven hundred years." The creature said softly. "Fell from the sky he did." There was a slight chuckle. "Saved me, he did." The Jedi Master gave Harry a flat look. "Made my life hell."
Harry was surprised to hear the creature say something so 'Sirius-like' and with a British accent.
"Jedi Master, was I. Respect, from all. Sirius Black… never serious." He said dryly. "Eighty years did we travel together. Often I rode on his back." He looked fondly at Rabe's new companion. "Died on Kashyyyk, old, happy, only regret that he did not live to see you come."
The old creature looked at Harry who was freely crying. "Mourn him not, young wizard. Go, rest. Come to you I will. Tonight. Bring you what he left you."
Harry was so badly distracted that Qui-Gon instructed Obi-Wan to help Rabe get him back to the embassy. Obi-Wan had assured Harry that Yoda, the little old alien, would not have lied. If he said Sirius died happy, then he did.
Padme sent off Eirtae to talk to the senators from Kashyyyk to see if they could provide any information about Sirius Black, she then spent the rest of her time trying to help Harry understand the current situation with Naboo and what the senate hearing was about.
She did a great job of distracting him.
The senate was huge. Thousands of floating pods lined the grey metal walls. The occupants of the pods varied in height, colour, mass, number of limbs, eyes, ears, antennae… Harry hadn't seen anything like it.
They had to sit through over an hour of formalities, from the six people who had to confirm the Chancellor was who he said he was so he could take his seat to the reading of the minutes of the last meeting.
Eventually Senator Palpatine was ceded the floor.
He made it two sentences into describing the invasion before the representatives of the Trade Federation rudely interrupted. They were sent back to their previous place by the Chancellor for speaking out of turn.
Palpatine quickly made way for the Queen to present their case.
The Queen spoke eloquently and politely… for about twenty seconds before the Trade Federation interrupted again.
They objected and wanted a commission sent to Naboo. Unfortunately they were backed by senators from another planet.
Queen Amidala turned and knelt before Harry, grasping his hands in hers. "Please, what do I do?" She begged.
Harry had no idea how politics worked. But he did have a little bit of experience with courts, this was expanded on by a bit of research he had done after his farce of a trial before the Wizengamot.
"Rules." He said quietly. "They are trying to use rules to say a commission must be sent. Fine, but… go back to the first rule breaking… is it within the rules for the Trade Federation to speak without it being their turn? They were sent back once already. How many chances do they get before they are punished.
"Shut them up and finish your speech. Then see how everyone else reacts."
Amidala had a hard glint in her eyes as she stood and moved Palpatine out of the way. "Your Honour, before we continue, we must address the issue of the Trade Federation's disrespect to myself, this august body and yourself. Not only have they interrupted me again, they have ignored your ruling to their objection. Further, they have not presented their motion to assemble a committee in the appropriate manner.
"The People of Naboo have ensured that all the rules and procedures were followed. We trust that the rule of law shall be respected and upheld in this matter."
She stood there, defiant. Her eyes never wavered from the Chancellors.
"Agreed." Valorum said eventually. "The delegates of the Trade Federation will resume their place. They may consider themselves under censure for the remainder of this meeting."
The Trade Federation's pod floated back, the blue lighting that lined it turned red.
"The delegates of the Congress of Malastare are reminded that there is no motion on the table from the Trade Federation and so they cannot claim the law on their behalf."
The three eyed beings floated back to their place, clearly embarrassed.
"Queen Amidala, please continue." Valorum inclined his head.
"Thank you, Your Honour.
"As I was saying, the Trade Federation has illegally invaded Naboo. They have occupied our orbit with their ships, landed their tanks and rounded up my people like cattle.
"Every day they kill more and more of us.
"My own escape was only possible because of the Jedi and Harry Potter."
Harry's skin crawled as he was suddenly the centre of attention. Fortunately the Queen redirected it back to her.
"We have recordings of all types of the atrocities being committed on my people by the Trade Federation. We also have the testimony of the Jedi themselves.
"Our motion was prepared and is presented forthwith, we demand the aid of the Republic in removing the Trade Federation from our system and that they be forced to pay recompense for their crimes."
What followed was a debate.
Harry had no idea what was discussed… he fell asleep. Granted, he was exhausted from the emotional revelations of the morning, but the senate room was not exactly well lit and they were extremely boring.
Harry was woken by Palpatine roughly shaking him. "Get up boy." He said harshly.
"Senator." Came the reproachful voice of Queen Amidala. She stepped forward and sat next to Harry. "Harry, they are still refusing to do anything. At the moment the only course of action we have is to call for a vote of no-confidence on the Chancellor."
Harry rubbed his eyes tiredly and sat up. "Is he still following the law?"
"He has acted above reproach."
"Then he isn't the problem. The next guy will still be bound by the law… unless he chooses not to be… which would make you a part of illegal activities.
"Like I said, don't stab someone in the back just because they can't help you."
"I must do something Harry." She pleaded.
Harry looked out into the senate room. All the different species. He idly wondered if any of them had more than two genders.
Then he saw the smug look on the faces of the Trade Federation.
"The commission they want to send, it could take days for them to form it, right?"
"It could take months." Palpatine scoffed. He had a clear dislike for Harry, he didn't see why the boy should be here.
"But the Trade Federation, they didn't get their 'blockade' approved through the senate, did they?"
"We wouldn't be here arguing about it if they did."
Harry purposefully turned away from the annoying old man and faced Amidala. "Look, I had problems back home with the government. They were corrupt… they did this to me." He showed her the back of his hand.
The stoic façade of the Queen of Naboo vanished as she saw the carvings there. She didn't know what they meant, she just knew it was a form of torture.
"The bad guys used the government to get away with murder. In the end I had to do things that were considered illegal to protect my friends and loved ones."
"I don't understand." She said in frustration.
"All of this is useless." He gestured to the delegates. "The Trade Federation didn't bring their concerns to this senate. The senate isn't interested in getting involved.
"So why should you ask them to?" Harry gave a mirthless chuckle. "Do what I did. Find your friends, prepare yourselves for battle and then deal with the situation."
The Queen's eyes seemed shine and she smiled. "Thank you, Harry Potter. You have saved us once again."
Harry wasn't sure what she meant, he just watched as she stood and addressed the senate.
"Chancellor, long have the people of Naboo cherished their relationship with your office and the Republic. But it would seem that at this time, our goals, our needs, are not the same.
"Our people are suffering and dying. All this body cares for is bureaucracy. If this body is willing to sit back and do nothing whilst one of its members commits heinous crimes against the other, then perhaps it is time for us to part ways."
The senate was filled with loud mutterings.
"SILENCE!" Valoran boomed, shooting out of his seat. "Your Majesty, surely such an action is unnecessary. I beg you, a little patience-"
"Patience will achieve nothing but more murders committed on my people. We cannot sit and wait for you to debate whilst the evidence has been presented and the damage escalates."
Valoran sagged. "My hands are tied by the law."
"Then your laws are not worthy of my people. If you will not see justice done, we shall do so ourselves."
Palpatine scowled as Harry pushed him out of the way and whispered in Amidala's ear.
He allowed himself a smirk as he saw the young Queen glare at the boy.
"We will allow you ten days to come to an accord as to how you will deal with the Trade Federation. After that time, we will see if the People of Naboo shall remain in the Republic."
The pod started moving back to its dock as the senate erupted in shouts.
The entire way back to the embassy, Amidala had remained silent. She had ignored Palpatine's heated questions and demands for explanations.
The handmaidens were clearly seething at his attitude, the growls from the dogs weren't helping.
When it became clear that he wasn't going to get a response from the Queen, he turned his ire on Harry.
"You! You may have single-handedly doomed our planet." He hissed. "Valorum will bow to the wishes of the bureaucrats and money makers and the senate will legitimise the invasion.
"With Valorum gone, I would have been the Chancellor and-"
"You would have been bound by the laws and rules of the senate." Amidala spoke up tersely. "Just like Valorum."
"Your Majesty, as Chancellor I could have sped things up. I could have used executive powers to send my own committee. I could have gone myself!" He pleaded.
"It would take too long, Senator." She shook her head.
The shuttle docked and the Queen exited, surrounded by her handmaidens. Harry made to follow but a hand slammed down on his shoulder painfully.
"I will see you ruined boy. You have destroyed everything." Palpatine was frothing.
Harry looked down at the old hand. "Move it or lose it." He said calmly.
Palpatine snarled and pushed Harry roughly out of the shuttle.
Harry stumbled but held his footing, he turned to see the shuttle take off, the old man still looking at him, hatefully.
"Harry, please explain why you stopped me from withdrawing from the senate." Padme said angrily as she tore off her headdress. "I looked like a fool who couldn't make up her mind!"
"I'm sorry… but, I told you how I was treated by the government. I don't know much about the law or politics, but I do know both sides can use it." Harry said as he sat down, lifting his arm onto the table gingerly. "Let them fight over policy and motions and committees. Like I said, get your friends, go back to Naboo and deal with the situation.
"Then take your friends and your people and deal with the Trade Federation."
"But the senate will come down hard on us! They could severely hurt us!" She sat opposite him as Rabe and Eirtae used sponges to remove her makeup.
Harry pulled out his wand flicked it at her, clearing away the makeup and causing the handmaidens to gasp. "Then, according to the aliens with the three eyes, a committee must be formed to investigate the claims that the Trade Federation might make. It's the law." He said with a dark smile.
"And when that committee eventually is formed?" She challenged, standing to remove her outer robe.
Harry leaned back in his chair, cradling his arm. "From what I remember, the Trade Federation was trying to force you to sign a surrender… or something. Make sure you do a better job."
Padme was still tense and upset, but she sent several of her handmaidens to contact the allies of Naboo. Harry stayed in his room, mainly to avoid her ire.
The sun was setting when there was a sharp knock on his door and he found Yoda standing there with a large cube.
"Strained, it is." Came the croaky voice. "Much confusion and hurt. I sense." He pushed his way past Harry. "Talk to the girls you should."
"They're mad at me, sir." Harry said tiredly as he moved to sit on the bed.
He quickly stood back up and shrunk the chair for the old Jedi to sit on. He then sat on the floor opposite with his back against the bed.
Yoda chuckled. "Like Black, you are. But not always, I feel."
Harry sat there, patiently.
"Tell you many things, I could. I will." He corrected himself. "Answers you seek and answers you will get. Speak to you, the Old Dog will."
Yoda placed the cube on the floor and activated it.
A light glowed from within and a foot-tall hologram appeared. Harry's chest tightened.
"Yoda! You little goblin! You look older every time I see you!"
The hologram turned at his whispered name. "Harry? You- you've arrived!" He turned back to Yoda. "Told you, I did." He said mockingly, imitating the Jedi's voice and speech patterns. "Hey! Stop that!"
Yoda was poking viciously at the cube with his stick. "Lost! Lost is the boy. Looking for family. Find only memories. Focus!"
Sirius turned back to Harry.
"Wha- What happened to you? I was right behind you." Harry's voice was hoarse.
"I know, Pup. I saw you." Sirius said sadly. "I've got some bad news, some sucky news, some… well, all I have is bad news. But that doesn't mean you can't make good of it.
"First of all, I'm dead. This-" He gestured to his cube. "Is a holocron. I think of it as a muggle movie. Normally they work just like movies and only repeat the same recording. I modified this one to act like a magical portrait.
"I'm not the real Sirius, Pup. I'm his portrait, his memory. But don't you doubt for a second that I don't love you." He said sternly.
"You didn't try to get back home?" Harry sniffed as he wiped his eyes.
Sirius shook his head. "I did a lot of work on making it possible… but I knew you were coming, so I waited and made sure I left the tools for you to survive.
"Which brings us to the sucky news. You've probably figured out we aren't in the Milky Way anymore. No one had heard of it when I was alive…" He turned to Yoda who just shook his head. "Yeah, but… I did find Earth."
Harry perked up.
"Sorry kid, we aren't just far from home, we are far in the past. We travelled through time and space.
"We are in a time, long ago in a galaxy far, far away. You could probably make it back home, but you'd be there thousands of years before you were born."
"Breathe young Padawan." Yoda warned as Harry began to hyperventilate. "Hope! Hope is what you must seek. Hmm? The past is gone. The future you must seek. The future is where hope lies."
"Listen to Yoda, Pup. I spent most of my life with him. Besides, you are not alone. You've got me, Yoda, Garaka-"
"With the Force, is Garaka. Chewbacca, his grandson tends your land." Yoda informed him.
"Damn. Why didn't anyone wake me?" Sirius demanded.
"Forget many things, does old age cause. Forgot me, you did! Died, old and frail." Yoda poked the cube again with a huff.
"Anyway, you've got friends." Sirius assured Harry.
"Consorts with royalty he does." Yoda chuckled. "Queen of Naboo these quarters own."
"Wow… you really don't do things by half, do ya Pup?" Sirius laughed.
"I've kinda been dragged into a war." Harry grimaced. "I landed on Naboo in the middle of them being invaded."
"I landed on Kashyyyk and nearly got roasted on a spit." Sirius countered. "Although, I did land on Garaka."
"I landed on a Gungan… I think I killed him." Harry shuddered.
"Kid, if you landed like I did, then I doubt you had any control."
Harry shook his head.
"Now, tell me and Yody here what you've been up to since you arrived."
They talked and talked and talked.
Sirius had never been more proud in his life… existence.
Sirius told Harry about the land he technically owned on Kashyyyk. It was a planet inhabited by 'Giant Cuddly Teddy bears'. Yoda had chuckled at that. He also assured Harry that he could help him continue his education in magic.
He was very interested in seeing the transfigured dogs and wanted to watch him make another.
Eventually there was a knock on the door and Harry opened it to find a nervous Padme standing there in her Amidala guise. The headdress was more compact and the robes a lot like a Jedi's.
"Harry… I just wanted to apologise for yesterday." Harry found it hard to see her as the Queen. The Queen always looked up at a person. She stood proud. This Queen was staring at her fidgeting hands. "I shouldn't have snapped at you like that. You also stopped me from making a grave mistake."
"Erm…" Harry had no idea how to deal with that. He had never been apologised to so sincerely.
"Introduce us, you should." Came the old voice.
Harry snapped out of his worry as Padme straightened and once again became Queen Amidala. Harry gestured her to come in. "Your Majesty, this is Jedi Master Yoda and my godfather, Sirius Black. Gentlemen, this is Her Majesty, Queen Amidala of Naboo."
Yoda chuckled. "See the resemblance, you do."
"It's like looking in a bloody mirror!"
"Sirius! Mind your language." Harry hissed. "Her Majesty doesn't look anything like you."
"What? No, the dog!"
Sure enough the dog he had made for Padme was standing alert at her side.
"How long did you say this little guy had been alive?"
"Oh… I don't actually know. I couldn't keep track of days and nights in space."
"Paddy has existed for six days. His older brother, Padfoot, for eight days." The Queen answered.
"Wow! That is impressive. Has he shown any change in behaviour or looks?" Sirius asked.
"We believe Padfoot was sick on the second day, but we were still experimenting on what he ate."
"Harry, Pup, these guys might be permanent." Sirius said in awe. "Your parents were good at stuff like that, I wasn't. As long as you live so will the dogs."
"This pleases us." Amidala stated with an unusually fond look at the dog. "We have never been gifted with something so wonderful."
Harry blushed as Yoda smirked and Sirius grinned.
Queen Amidala then turned to Harry. "Harry, we have called on our allies and they have agreed aid us. We will attend a Council of Liberation within the hour."
"Liberation?" Sirius queried.
"Remember I told you about Naboo?" Harry said.
"Yeah, but I've never heard of a 'Council of Liberation'. Council of War? Sure."
"A Council of War against other members of the Republic would not be permitted under the current charter." Amidala said lightly.
"Hmmph, playing politics, you are." Yoda huffed. He then gave the Queen a sly grin. "Fight fire with fire, Black says."
"It usually works." Sirius shrugged.
"Leave you, I will." Yoda declared as he stood from the shrunken chair. "Allow me to visit, I trust. Good to keep friendships strong."
A/N: The completely skippable authors opinion... seriously, just a few notes on Star Wars Prequels, Anakin Bashing and... that character.
So, first of all, I don't care about Jar Jar. I neither hate him nor like him... but like a few other things in the prequels, he doesn't make sense in the story. A bumbling fool who becomes a respected senator.
Now, that said, this is a story about sci-fi being combined with magic and fantasy... what you can believe is upto you. But there is no progression or explanation on how Jar Jar became respected enough.
Onto the real issue: Why the prequels never worked for me.
Put bluntly, the actors, the directors and writers failed to portray a likeable child. And that did not improve for the other two movies. Obi Wan told Luke that Anakin was his friend and a great Jedi. Obi Wan calls Anakin his brother.
But throughout the whole of the series Anakin is portrayed as a person destined to become the most feared Sith of all time. He steals, he argues, sulks, shouts gets angry. Visually, it seems impossible for Anakin to sit on the council in the third movie and the 'Jedi Masters' not sense the Dark Side rolling off him.
He is incredibly obessive and borders on stalking when it comes to Padme.
But this is an issue the writers and directors didn't consider as they were probably trying to play on the broody heroes that were flooding the market.
It failed. Anakin was considered a great Jedi by Obi Wan, but all we are shown is a terrible person. (I haven't seen the tv shows and cartoons and I'm only talking about the movies.)
They should have shown Anakin like we were shown Harry Potter. A slave, shown a bright new world and eager to see more but cautious of his place in life. He should have been an amazing Jedi who's skills were only rivalled by his compassion and demeanour. Then they could have brought in the fear and paranoia and focused it around losing Padme. Palpatine steps in and, if you know the story of Dooku you know that he was a good Jedi, he fell because of the failings of the Council and the forked-tongue of Palpatine. But we'll get to that in story.
In short, don't worry about Anakin, he doesn't have a young man looking for a brother to spoil as a teacher. He has an older man with a firm hand and a desire to see his student surpass him. You've seen the pairings for this story, Padme isn't in his future. He's barely in the story.
I just wish he was a better person from the start. It's like Lex as I wrote him in Death's Little Brother. That single scene where he confronts Clark when he was depowered. It was the make or break moment for Lex and it all rested on Clark. Clark failed and told Lex a lie. Lex knew this and as a result the trust was broken.
Harry Potter is not a fan of Anakin for reasons he stated. All he sees is Dudley and Malfoy. All Padme sees is a child who stares at her and disturbs her and is rude to her friend. Remember that Harry and Padme are fifteen and fourteen respectively, they are not adults or teachers, they are teenagers.
But there are plenty of adults around to look out for the kids.
I was going to put this at the end of the story, but I saw a rather divided view on the 'Anakin Bashing'. I don't read all reviews, just the latest few to make sure I haven't posted a duplicate chapter or skipped one... I've done that more than once.
I've managed to redeem Severus Snape, Lex Luthor, Emma Frost and probably others. Anakin is easy. Draco Malfoy however... I've got several other stories I'm working on and I still can't manage it.
Anyway, keep reading if you want, stop if you don't. There are thousands of stories on this site, don't be like my father and insist on watching a show or movie from beginning to end just because he started it. This story is already finished, nothing will change it.