As Leia would put it, Luke has some difficulty recognizing just how abnormal his life is.
He thinks that in another world, he might’ve grown up humble, unknown - happier in obscurity, maybe, with a simpler life.
But this is the world in where his and Leia’s births made it to the second pages of national newspapers, where there were paparazzi parked outside of the hospital, ready to snap the first photo of the Skywalker twins. Somewhere in one of his parents’ houses, there’s an engraved copy of the famous photo - Anakin Skywalker holding two fat babies in either arm, Padme Skywalker gliding radiant behind him.
He just assumes that his own life experience is normal, see. Even after nearly three decades of being one of the most famous faces in the world, it’s something that Luke has to remind himself of, or at least have Leia point it out whenever he’s done something stupid.
So when Luke sees a man in the gym one morning, and he’s wearing gigantic sunglasses with a hood pulled up over his head, he doesn’t think anything of it when he sidles up to him, offers, “Just so you know, there’s an exit from the basement that gets out without been noticed.”
He recognizes the awkward kind of tilt to his shoulders. If he had to guess, the man has probably only recently come to fame, in that weird period before you figure out that masks and hats will only call more attention to you trying to be incognito. He’s never been in that phase himself, but he’s been around enough new celebrities that he likes to pay it forward, to say, to give that kind of advice that only people like him would know.
The man turns - maybe from where he’d seen the small crowd of people gather outside the gym through the glass - and he stiffens. Luke can hear Leia’s voice in his head - give him a second, people are surprised that we actually exist, remember.
Luke hurries to add, “That’s what I use. Just a tip for you,” and gives him a genuine smile, unlike what he had plastered on his face when he’d come in earlier. He has very few good things to say about Boba Fett personally, but professionally, his gym is perfect for those who want to work out without worrying about who’s going to steal their sweaty towels.
The man doesn’t reply for a beat, and Luke mentally prepares for what usually comes after those silences. It’s usually asking for a photo or gushing over whatever movie he’s been in recently - one weird time when someone literally passed out in front of him - and Luke appreciates the genuine fans, he really does, but they do tend to blend together after a while.
But the man doesn’t do what people typically do after meeting him. He merely says, “I’ll keep that in mind.”
Luke can’t recognize him, mostly because of said sunglasses and hoodie, but he just claps him on the arm again, says, “Have a good time,” before slipping his earbuds back in and starting up again on a treadmill.
The man disappears by the time Luke next glances up, puffing as he cools down from his run. He remembers what it was like when he was eighteen, pursuing his own projects away from the protective eye of Anakin and Padme - he can’t imagine being thrust into the spotlight so suddenly, without anyone to give you that kind of advice.
He just hopes that the man isn’t some C-list actor who’s just left to tell the paparazzi outside where Luke will be exiting the building in half an hour.
Luke uses the same entrance he had told him about to leave the gym, and he’s glad to see that the alleyway that greets him is once again empty.
The next week keeps him busy. Luke has to beg his agent for a few uninterrupted hours in the middle of Friday to clear his head away from the press conferences and from looking at the scripts that have been passed onto him. He’s been looking for intriguing roles, something that he has to fight for to get, and ones that he’ll be taken seriously after - and it’s been a frustrating affair, to say the least.
Sometimes, he wishes he had followed Leia into the foundation work, because she seems like she knows what she’s doing and she gets the respect - which she rightfully deserves, of course. But then he had to get into the fight with his father, which had to culminate in the Argument, which had meant Luke moving out west to try his hand at acting a few years back.
His mother still calls him up about once a month, making significant allusions to having him host one of her galas. Luke knows he doesn’t want to do that, at least. Leave the crowds to Leia, who takes to those kinds of politics like a duck to water.
It’s sweltering outside when he finally leaves his agent’s office, and he decides that a workout might help clear his head. Luke welcomes the cool blast of air from the gym as he slips in through a side door, hoping to have it be mostly empty in the early afternoon.
He’s not so lucky, but then Luke can see that one of the few people in the room is the man from last week. He’s wearing a different hoodie, but he has those same gigantic sunglasses perched on his face, obscuring most of his features even as Luke approaches.
Luke goes over to the weight racks just as the man finishes a set. The sweatshirt does nothing to hide the broad line of his shoulders as he sets down the impressive weights, and Luke has to drag his eyes away before he can accidentally ogle the man.
“Afternoon,” he greets, stepping forward to take two barbells himself. “This heatwave, am I right?”
He gets a grunt in response. Not minding it at all, Luke starts his routine, breathing heavily through his nose before long.
They work out in silence, the only sound being their mingled exhales and the background garbage that Fett thinks is music - Luke kind of wishes he’d remembered his headphones, only he feels a strange sort of solidarity with the other man who’s forced to listen to it as well.
The man stops before him, and he steps away with his water bottle, tilting his head back as he drinks deeply. Luke finishes his set, sets them back on the rack.
On another thought, he goes over to where the man is wiping his hand on the back of his mouth.
“Hey,” Luke says, wiping sweat away from his forehead, and the man turns to look at him. “I remember you from last week.” Those are some impressive sunglasses because Luke can’t even see the outline of his eyes from this close.
He can see the line that forms between the man’s eyebrows. “Yeah?”
Usually, people are able to be a little more conversational with him at this point, but it doesn’t deter him. Luke gestures to one of the overhead speakers, says, “Hoping that my ears don’t start bleeding on the weights, think that’s against the gym’s policy - “
“Why are you over here?” the man interrupts, bluntly, instead.
Luke laughs, mostly from surprise. “Sorry, I’ll leave you be,” he says, giving him a weird semi-salute that will definitely haunt his dreams tonight. He likes when people are up front like that, wondering why he’s talking to them specifically, but he’s not about to make it weird when the guy probably just wants to work out without people wondering just what he’s doing talking to Luke Skywalker.
The man says quickly, “Wait. I didn’t mean it like that - “
“It’s okay,” Luke tells him, “Really. Have a good workout - “
“Wait,” the man insists, more firmly, and he steps forward just as Luke halts his steps. “I’m just having a bad day. Sorry.”
“Ah,” Luke says, understanding that particular brand of frustration. “Let me guess - useless agent?”
“Something like that,” the man says, and Luke hums in commiseration. “So you come here a lot?”
Luke really wishes he could see the man’s face because that almost sounds like a line. Maybe he’s an Olympian spending the offseason here - they tend to be shyer, but he doesn’t want to read the signals wrong.
“I like it,” Luke says, “Music and, uh, owner aside.” The gym is a little grungy, sure, but no one tries to take a photo of him in the sauna, and Luke likes meeting people here instead of just hiring a private trainer. Especially men who look like they can lift twice his body weight and treat him like a normal human being in conversation - case in point.
(Leia’s voice is even stronger in his head: you do know that your bar for decency is on the ground, right, to which Luke would argue, you do know that you’re married to Han Solo, who you once swore to murder before you’d sleep with, right?)
“Oh, you know Boba?” the man asks.
“Kind of,” Luke says, not wanting to get into it. He opens his water bottle. “So did you just make the move out here official?”
“I grew up here,” the man says, shifting from foot to foot. “I’m guessing you… didn’t.”
Luke laughs. He remembers when he moved out to the coast at nineteen, away from his parents and Leia, and the media frenzy assuming he had been disowned from them. “You got that right. Listen, I know it can be tough adjusting, so let me know if you need any recommendations for agents or anything else out here.”
“For… exercising?” the man asks, and Luke laughs again. He’s funny. “Thanks.”
“Anytime,” Luke says, still smiling, and he reaches out to touch the man’s arm. “It’s important to have good people around you, you know? Just remember that, and everything works out.”
The man hesitates, and his arm is ridiculously solid, Luke thinks, taking a sip of water just as the man says suddenly, “Do you want to get out of here?”
Luke tries not to splutter water down his front. “What?”
“If you want,” the man says hurriedly, as Luke wonders if he should take his hand away or just stay very still, “I’m sorry if I got this wrong, you just seemed like you were flirting and if you weren’t, I don’t mean to make you uncomfortable - “
Luke doesn’t remove his hand, and he says, “Yes.”
The man’s eyebrows shoot up. “Yes?”
“Although I’d kind of like to see your face first,” Luke tells him honestly, “I’m amazed you’ve kept them on so long in here.”
The man slowly reaches up, takes off the sunglasses right then. He leaves the hood up, which Luke would find funny if he wasn’t so struck by how handsome the man is.
He’s older, with dark brown eyes, a sharp jaw, and cheekbones that Luke is captivated by. He’s blinking down at Luke like he’s the one who just pulled off four inches of tinted glass, and Luke doesn’t care if the paparazzi see him ogling now, because this is a beautiful man and he won’t be shamed for it.
(Luke: 1, Leia-in-his-head: take that).
He doesn’t recognize him, though, which is both a relief and a shame. Relief that he’s not one of Leia’s or Han’s exes - it’s happened, none of them talk about it now - and a shame, because he doesn’t want to seem like he’s one of those celebrities who makes everyone fall at their feet, even when Luke really just wants to know more about the beautiful man at the gym without all that baggage.
He’d really like to know his name, though.
“Wow,” Luke says, “You are gorgeous - ” and he trails off, before biting the bullet. “I’m sorry, but what’s your name?”
“Din,” the man says after a moment, not looking phased by it, “Din Djarin.” There’s a hint of pink blooming on his face, and it’s an even better look on him.
“Nice to meet you, Din,” Luke says, and he can’t help the pleased smile that comes over his face, “I’m Luke Skywalker.”
The man’s mouth twitches, probably because he knew that already. “I drove here,” he offers, and Luke slips his hand off his arm.
“Lead the way,” he says. His agent can wait at least a few more hours.
Din drives them not into the new part of the city, where a lot of A-listers own condos given the short commute, but to a much more modest neighborhood. Luke mentally revisits his estimation of him - maybe he’s got someone famous in the family who
He parks his car out front of a two-story house, painted pale grey and looking utterly unremarkable. What’s much more noteworthy is the way that Din flips the keys in his hands, standing awkwardly in the driveway as he says, “If you still want to…”
Luke very much wants, thank you very much.
It’s all too easy to close the distance between them, hook his fingers into the waistband of Din’s athletic pants, look up at him through his eyelashes and say, “Are you going to show me inside?”
Din presses him up against the wall just inside the door, his hands immediately going to Luke’s hips like they’ve been drawn there by magnets. Luke bites down lightly on his lower lip, finally getting his hands into the other man’s hair, tossing the hood of his sweatshirt back. Din has short, dark hair that Luke runs his fingers through immediately, tugging just a little and finding with delight that it makes him moan right against Luke’s mouth.
It’s a little ridiculous how right it feels, even when Luke accidentally bangs his head on a picture frame, or Din has to break free from a kiss to swear when Luke manages to dig his fingers in a little too deep in his shoulders, saying hoarsely against his mouth, “Sorry, just sore, keep going - “
They make out furiously against the wall for a good while, though. Din pulls away at one point, making it about three feet into the foyer before Luke is unzipping his hoodie - to his mild distress, finding a tee-shirt underneath, another layer foiling him from his ultimate destination. By then, Din’s already working on the ties to his own pants, his hands clumsy as he stops to suck Luke’s tongue into his mouth once again, and Luke feels how hard he is against him and shudders.
Somewhere on the staircase - they’re briefly horizontal so that Luke can lick a line down his chest, say to him, “Oh my god, you are perfect,” - and Din hoists him up at that, hands going right underneath his thighs. Only Luke is heavier than he looks, and they both sort of fall into each other on the top landing once again, but neither of them is too bothered by it.
They eventually make it to the bedroom. It’s another understated room, no art on the walls but what looks look like actual family photos. But all that’s based on what Luke is able to briefly take in before he’s dragged down onto the mattress.
He loses himself into the press of skin against his, the flutter of Din’s eyelashes when he takes his cock in his mouth. Luke’s heels are digging into his back as Din rolls his tongue over the head of his cock, looking just as lost in the sensation while Luke grabs onto the sheets, his hair, anything to keep himself from losing all control.
“I hope,” Luke wheezes, when they’re both covered in sweat and recovering next to each other, “This made your day better. You really - took my offer to heart - “
Din rolls over on top of him again, and it turns out that stamina is not something he needs any advice on.
He loses track of time after the second round, captivated by the press of Din’s body against his, after which they’re lazily grinding against the sheets for what could be hours. The sun is low in the sky by the time that they separate for long enough that he can squint out the window, dragging his mouth away from Din’s collarbone.
His mind is blissfully blank, and Din is kissing his shoulder occasionally, heavy legs sprawled out over his, his movements getting smaller and smaller. Luke’s hands start to wander back down his back, tracing lines of muscle, testing his interest. He can feel Din shudder against him, the press of his hips against his side.
Right in his ear, Luke offers, “I could use my mouth this time.”
The other man groans, pressing his face into the crook of Luke’s neck. “I don’t want to throw you out, but…”
Luke sighs, dragging his hands back up the man’s back before scrubbing a hand over his face. “Don’t worry,” he says, “I’ll go in a minute.” His driver is definitely going to shoot him some looks once he gets into the car again. Luke can feel a hickey blooming high on his neck, and he just hopes that no one followed them here.
Din lifts his head up at that, meeting his eyes. “It’s not you,” he insists.
“It’s okay,” Luke says, and he stifles a yawn, “I’ll call… In a minute…”
He musters enough energy to sit up, knowing that if he looks back, he’s going to be tempted to make a case for another round, while gently untangling his legs from his.
Din catches his wrist before he makes fully it out of bed, though. “Listen,” he says, looking flushed, “I don’t usually do this - “
“You could’ve fooled me,” Luke says with a laugh, pulling his hand to press a kiss against his wrist.
Din swallows, and he looks so good in the golden evening light. “I mean it, if you wanted - “
He’s interrupted by the sound of the front door opening, then a voice calling out. “- yes, I do think that’s your daddy home early!”
“Um,” Luke says.
“Oh my god,” Din says, going sheet-white. “That’s the nanny with my son - he’s back early, I didn’t think - “
He goes scrambling for his pants, which Luke, unfortunately, remembers yanking down somewhere out in the hallway. There are footsteps, then a child’s voice outside the door - “Daddy?”
“Shit,” Din swears, then turns to Luke with a stormy expression. “Okay, now you need to go - “
“Okay,” Luke says, catching the shirt that Din flings at his face, “Wait, I have a plan!“
That’s how Luke finds himself scrambling down the drainpipe of a suburban backyard.
Din’s face appears at the window, and he mouths, thank you, as Luke tries to adjust his shirt before he has to leap over a very tall fence.
Luke gives him a reflexive thumbs up, and only feels a little like dying inside at it.
Leia laughs for a full two minutes when he tells her about it.
He hadn’t intended to, but she had dropped by his house for a late dinner the next day, and had immediately spotted the bruise on his neck.
As much as Luke loves his sister, she has a truly wretched way of getting even the most compromising stories from him with very little effort, probably because she’s brilliant and definitely manipulative and he has no poker face.
“Stop,” Luke hisses as she continues to laugh into minute three, actual tears springing into her eyes by now, “It’s not that funny - “
At his feet, Artoo picks up his head. Luke loves that dog, but he’s definitely getting a judging vibe from him right now too, which is not what he needs.
“It really is,” Leia says at last, wiping her eyes. “Okay. I’m done. So you just met him at the gym?”
“He was handsome,” Luke says with as much dignity as he can muster, “And it had been a while. All right?”
“Sure,” Leia says, leaning back on the couch. “I just can’t believe you didn’t make him sign an NDA.”
It hadn’t occurred to Luke until literally that moment, but he isn’t about to tell her that. “He’s not a bad guy,” Luke says, feeling the notion to defend Din - though he doesn’t even know his last name. It strikes him, that even with the little he knows about him - he wants to. Something about him has hooked.
“And you just know this?” Leia says, seeing right through him and raising an eyebrow to boot.
“Well, he’s definitely the really private sort,” Luke says. He pours more wine into her glass, says, “I miss this, you know? You being here.”
“That’s what you get for moving so far away,” Leia reminds him. “You know, Dad is going to call you about moving back - “
“Oh, don’t start - “
“- he thinks you should join him for this charity event, talk to some of his friends about getting involved in the work.” Leia’s eyes soften, then. “It’s really rewarding, you know. And I know you’re trying to make this work - “
“I want to make something I’m proud of, all right?” Luke tells her, shifting in his seat. “And you can tell both of them that - “
“Tell them yourself, you could call them more anyways - “
“- that I want to stay with it for at least a few more years.” He punctuates his words with a gesture still holding his wine glass. “Is that so much to ask, I mean?”
“Right,” Leia says dryly, “Because you’re just a struggling artist trying to make it out here.”
Her sarcasm - and his full awareness that they’re sitting in his two million-dollar home - isn’t lost on him. Luke presses his head back into the couch. Artoo whines. “I know I’m not, I just - want to be someone other than the son of Padme, you know? I want to do something that’s all me.”
“Yeah,” Leia says, and she sighs. “I know. I’m sorry.”
“It’s ok,” Luke says. “You’re the one who has to be married to Han, anyway.”
Half a bottle of wine later, Luke adds onto their earlier conversation, “I just wish I could ask someone we know in common.”
“The handsome man,” Luke says, and he takes a long, long drink before adding, “The beautiful man.”
Leia, her feet up on the back of his couch, sighs. “You really like him?”
“I think I might,” Luke says, then groans, flopping his head back into her lap.
“There, there,” Leia says, gracefully topping off his glass once again, which Luke attempts (and somewhat fails) at not spilling. “Is there someone at the gym who you can ask about him?”
“No,” Luke says instantly, then: “Oh no.”
Fett looks deeply unimpressed at Luke knocking at his office door, a little hungover and yet determined all the same.
“I thought our agreement was clear,” he says to Luke, “I let you use my gym, and in exchange, I forget that you and your slimy friends exist.”
Boba Fett, on the surface, is a celebrity gym owner. Ask anyone in the city, however, and he’s the person who you go to when you’re being blackmailed, and he’ll make it go away - given that he’s not the one blackmailing you, that is. He and Luke aren’t on the best terms, given an incident a few years back with Han, his bachelor party, the accidental discovery of an exotic animal zoo, and a loose shoelace.
Luke prefers not to think about it, all things the same.
“That’s a good idea,” Luke says, “But you’re the only one who I can ask this.”
Interest sparks in his eyes at that, in a way that makes him distinctly uncomfortable, and Fett leans forward. “Might you have a problem that needs attending to, Skywalker?”
“Uh,” Luke says, “Not quite.” He ignores the way that Fett looks disappointed, and says, “But I wanted to ask you about one of your other clients.”
Fett stares at him, and Luke forces himself to keep still. He finally asks, “And who is this?”
“His name is Din,” Luke says, “I’m not sure what industry he’s in, but he just started coming in - “
He’s interrupted by Fett letting out a sharp bark of laughter. “Din?”
“What?” Luke asks, “You know him?”
“He’s like a brother to me,” Fett says, and something in Luke’s stomach sinks. “Whatever do you want with him?”
He’s realizing that this could have been a mistake. “Nothing,” Luke says, “This has been… unhelpful, actually.”
“Now hold on, Skywalker, you’re not messing with Din, are you?”
“No,” Luke says, then pauses at the door, because maybe if he extends this olive branch, at least this problem will be solved. “You know, Han’s not such a bad guy if you look past - “
“Do not say that name in here,” Boba cuts him off, and Luke raises his hands in defense, backing away from his office.
If he takes a peek across the gym while he’s leaving to see if he recognizes anyone - or someone in particular - well, that’s between him and the receptionist out front, who smirks at him on his way out.
Din is in the gym the next Friday. Even though he’s wearing the same heavy sunglasses as last week, Luke can tell when he sees him, because his shoulders flatten into a rigid line from across the room.
Maybe he only meant for it to be a one-time thing. And yet, Luke finds his feet pulling him in that direction, and he stops just before him. There’s only one way to know, after all.
“Hey,” Luke says, twisting the top to his water bottle, standing there and feeling like an idiot.
Din has on boxing gloves, and he stays in perfect form, though his head’s swiveled to look right at him. “Hi.” He has the hood pulled up again, too, but Luke can tell he’s being scrutinized.
“I didn’t have your number,” Luke says slowly, “Given my, ah, abrupt departure.”
After a moment, Din jerks his head to the punching bag. “I was busy this week,” he says, and Luke nods, trying to hide his disappointment.
“Okay,” he says, and damn it, he’s going to have to find a new gym too. “Well, have a good - “
“Luke,” Din says, and he stops in his tracks, exactly like he had last week. “I was busy, but I couldn’t stop thinking about you.”
Well. That sounds like something else altogether. Luke steps forward, and he steadies the punching bag from the other side. “You were?”
Din meets his eyes - he thinks, at least - “Yeah.” He lifts his hand to presumably rub the back of his neck, only he’s still wearing his glove, and stops midway - and Luke is helplessly charmed.
He offers, “I’ll hold it,” putting himself behind the punching bag. “Here, you go - “
The other man gives a quick nod before hitting the bag again, as Luke steadies it. He’s relentless, and Luke can see his parted mouth, the sharp exhale as he concentrates.
Focusing on his task rather than the shape of his mouth, Luke says, “Are you training for something?”
Din lets out a sharp laugh, pausing for a moment. “My friend said I needed to get a hobby.”
Interesting. Maybe he’s a musician? “You don’t look like this is new to you,” Luke says, letting his eyes drag down his body.
Din stops, and he swats at Luke - playfully, he realizes, a grin coming to his face as he dodges it. “Focus. Do you want to go?”
He hasn’t boxed in ages - minus a guest-starring role where he played a fighter accused of murder - but Luke accepts.
Sliding on the gloves that Din offers him, he’s aware of the gap in the conversation. In his haste to not seem awkward, the best he can come up with is, “You know, my sister thinks that I should move back to be closer to the rest of my family.”
“Hm,” Din says, steadying the bag. “Having a quarter-life crisis?”
“I’m afraid I’m just a really shitty actor,” Luke confesses, hitting the bag once, twice. “I’m trying to find good roles or at least something to learn from, you know?”
Sounding strangely insistent, Din says, “Don’t let it get to you. I’m sure it’s a tough profession, but if you love it, you should stick with it.”
Luke is pretty sure that Din hasn’t seen him in that mini-series where he had to dye his hair red for six months if he’s saying things like that, but he appreciates it all the same. He clears his throat, says, “That’s nice of you to say.”
“You seem like the persistent sort,” Din continues, sounding both gruff and earnest at once. “Just - stay with it, and eventually you’ll be able to get something more solid so you can quit your day job.”
“…thanks,” Luke says, caught a little off guard. He must think that Luke has an obligation like his sister to the foundation. Or maybe he believes in the rumor that Luke has some strange quasi-religious clauses in all of his contracts that prevent him from working for large chunks of the years. Han’s sent him the articles before.
Din just makes a hm sound, before asking, “Are you close with your family?”
“Most of the time,” Luke says, hitting the bag again and again, “Especially - my sister - “ He can see Din brace his feet, as if not to get knocked over. “It’s nice, actually, to talk - about - it,” and he lands a final hit that makes Din stagger, just a bit, and he stops. “You good?”
“I’m fine,” Din says, and he straightens up. “My son - it’s always been me and him. I don’t know much about family issues, but I know that family means you want what’s best for them.”
Luke can’t believe he’s getting decent life advice from what’s currently a post-one-night-stand partner, but he’ll take it where he finds it. “How old’s your son?”
“He just turned four,” Din says, and then he sounds hesitant, “…do you want to see a photo of him?”
“I,” Luke says with complete honesty, “Would love that,” and Din pulls out his phone. Kids are great, and he’s not going to apologize for it.
Din’s son is adorable, all wide-eyed with spiky hair. Halfway through a slideshow that Din apparently has on demand, he doesn’t think twice before grabbing the phone from Din’s hand so he can zoom in himself.
At one point, Luke asks, “He made that himself?” at a photo of Grogu - Din admits his name after photo number seventeen - holding an elaborate marshmallow and toothpick - crafted building. Without an immediate response, he glances up to see Din just looking at him.
His sunglasses are down to the bridge of his nose, and he’s staring like Luke’s the impressive one - eyes dark and heavy on him.
Luke can feel a flush building down from his hairline. “What is it? Do you want it back?”
“Have dinner with me,” Din says instead, making no move to take his phone back. “I know some good places around here.”
Luke waffles for a moment, because he really likes this guy. But dinners with Skywalkers tend to turn into big, screaming fan kind of affairs, and he already guesses Din - really, now he is getting more indie musician vibes - might want a break from all of that.
“I’m not really a restaurant kind of guy,” Luke says, then to soften the blow in case he sounds like an asshole, “…trying to. Uh. Save money.”
But Din just nods like he’s taking this in stride. “Then I’ll cook,” he says, firmly. “Think of it as an apology for throwing you out of my house.”
That makes him deflate somewhat inside. “Hopefully not just an apology,” Luke says, raising his eyebrows.
In response, Din steps in close. “No,” he says, “It’s also because I like you, a lot,” and Luke’s maybe just a little breathless from the exercise, or the fact that he can feel the ghost of Din’s fingers along the outside of his wrist, as he has to look up at him at this angle. God, this could be a bad idea. “Come over tonight,” he says. “My son’s staying over with a friend.”
Luke doesn’t like dating, mostly because people either don’t understand his life, or they do, and they take advantage of it all too readily. But Din - Din seems different, and he really likes him, too.
Shit. “Okay,” Luke agrees, having to swallow so he doesn’t sound so breathy because he is not about to feel like he's in some ridiculous soap opera-y rom-com, “I will.”
Despite the sunglasses, the look that Din gives him makes him feel that same heat curl all the way down to his toes. It’s the kind of feeling that makes him feel brave and reckless, and Luke can see Din swallow when he closes the gap between them even more.
“You know,” Luke says, “The gold-tier showers in here are really nice.”
Confusion flits across Din’s face before another expression starts to dawn in its place. “You’re not seriously - “
“Luckily,” Luke continues, “I have a platinum key card,” and he brushes his hand on the outside of Din’s leg, before thinking to himself, fuck it, and grabbing the meat of his thigh instead. Just in case there was any confusion.
They don’t even make it there.
It’s a tight fit in the closet that they find in the hallway on their way to the showers, but they make it work, somehow, tangled up in one another.
“Shh,” Luke says against his mouth, “If we get caught, I’ll really be banned from the gym.” But not even Boba Fett himself finding them at this moment could make him any less hard, he thinks. There’s a mop bucket digging into his calf, but he’s much more captivated by the sounds that Din is making, trying to muffle his moans in Luke’s collarbone. “Shame we don’t have any lube.”
Din’s hips thrust up against Luke’s hand. “You,” he grits out, “Are a piece of work - “ and his words are cut off in another groan when Luke twists his wrist just right, rubs his thumb right over the head of his cock on the upstroke, “There, yeah, fuck.”
“You like it,” Luke tells him, nipping at his lower lip, keeping the rhythm up. Din’s hand grabs his elbow, squeezing him, and he says, “Right there, baby, I’ve got you, come on - “
“Insatiable,” Din gets out, as he groans and comes all over his hand. Luke draws it out, making him physically shake against him.
While Din’s still recovering, Luke says right into his ear, “What are you going to make me eat tonight?”
Then he’s the one who has to muffle his laughter when Din mutters something that sounds awfully like “Unbelievable,” before he’s hoisting Luke up - no small feat given the tight quarters - and pressing him more fully into the closet wall until Luke is the one digging his nails into his back, moaning.
It’s somewhere between dinner - Din makes spaghetti and meatballs, out of everything, charmingly endearing when he admits that he’s forgotten how to cook food that a four-year-old won’t eat - and much later when he presses a kiss into the back of Luke’s neck, that Luke realizes he’s screwed.
That night, he carefully extricates himself from Din’s grasp - the other man barely budging in his sleep when Luke has to pry his arm out from under him, let alone stir - and he makes it to the bathroom, where he pulls out his phone.
“Tell me you’re not being murdered,” Leia says when she picks up. There’s music in the background, as she adds, “If it’s too late, you know it’s date night, so your cold case can wait - “
“Sorry,” Luke says, faintly, and Leia falls abruptly silent, “But I think I’m catching feelings and I need to vent.”
“Feelings - for gym dad?”
“What - yes, for gym dad!” Luke hisses into his phone, cupping it closer to his mouth in case the sound carries. “And his name is Din.”
“Huh,” Leia says, and there’s a muffled voice on her end in the background - Han, maybe - “I don’t think I know him. Why’s that such a problem?”
“For one, I’ve spent maybe twelve hours with him total,” Luke says, “And two - he’s not like anyone else I’ve met and I do not know how to deal with that! He’s not asked me once if the cult rumors are true - “
“Oh, boo-hoo,” Leia says, “You’re not complaining right now about that, are you? So you like this guy.”
“I’m calling you from his bathroom right now, don’t you think you should be nicer to your brother when he’s in a crisis?”
“Your crisis is that you’re having feelings! Save this kind of call for when he has a second family you find out about!”
“Do you think,” Luke starts, then stops, before picking up again - “Do you think it’s so ridiculous that I could see myself falling in love with him so soon?”
“Luke,” Leia says, in that deathly low way of hers that Luke should have recognized as the sign of emotional trauma that comes next, “I am in the same city as my husband for once, Ben is at a sleepover, and there’s both a flank steak and a harness waiting with my name on it - “
“Oh my god, okay, I’m hanging up,” Luke snipes, louder than he intended, and he puts down the phone to the sound of her cackling.
He lets his head thud to the back of the tile. It’s a nice bathroom, he thinks distantly, all pale blue and cream decor. Worn in a nice way, lived-in instead of in the bleak minimalist way his own’s been decorated by someone else for years.
His fears, however, are confirmed when there’s a cautious tap on the door. “Are you okay?” Din’s voice travels in.
Luke scrubs a hand over his face, and he rises from the bathtub as dignified as he can manage. “I’m fine,” he calls and checks his reflection before opening the door.
Din, on the other side, looks like he’s very carefully not looking down at the phone in Luke’s hand. “Do you need to go?” he asks instead, and he looks - embarrassed?
“No,” Luke quickly says, “I was, just - checking in on someone, who’s watching my… dog.”
Din snorts. “You’re an awful liar,” he says, crossing his arms over his bare chest, just over his tattoo. “I thought actors were supposed to be good at that.”
“Well, I’m more than just an actor,” Luke says, leaning on the doorframe. Din watches him without a word, long enough that he feels compelled to add, “I wasn’t - having a breakdown or something.”
“That’s good,” Din says, blandly. “Doesn’t answer my question, though.” The amused look on his face is still tinged with something, and he looks content to wait Luke out to get an answer out of him.
Fuck it. He’s taking a page out of Han and Leia’s history of public declarations, maybe, but Luke gathers his courage, preparing himself for the worst. He says, “I like you.”
Din’s expression doesn’t change. “That’s also good.”
“I mean, I like you,” Luke enunciates, and now that the words are starting, they tumble out. “I want to find out what your favorite color is. I want to take you out for coffee, want to call you my boyfriend when fans come up to us on the street - “ It's way too much for this point in their relationship.
Din’s brow furrows at that last part, though, and Luke maybe shouldn't have used the boyfriend word so soon. “Fans?” he asks, instead.
“Well, mostly it's TMZ reporters,” Luke says, and the wrinkle between his eyes deepens. “And I get that this sort of thing gets complicated for us. I mean, I don’t know if you’re out to the public or to your agent, but I want to figure it out with you if you’ll let me.”
Whatever it is, he’s not prepared for Din asking, “Does TMZ follow you often?” still looking like he’s missing something.
“Oh,” Luke says, then: “Oh. You don’t - oh.” Several moments that seemed a little off to him before play in his mind. The pieces of the puzzle come together. “Oh boy,” he says at last.
Din frowns. “What are you talking about?”
“I’m kind of famous,” Luke admits. He can confidently say he’s never had this conversation before.
Luke has to wait for him to process all of this. He’s standing in the middle of the bedroom, nervously crossing and uncrossing his arms and trying not to look like his heart’s in his throat.
On the bed, Din pinches his nose. He’d pulled on a ratty bathrobe that looks unfairly good on him, drooping off one shoulder. “I’ve heard about the Skywalker family, but I didn’t think that you - you just seemed so normal.”
“Well, Leia’s really the famous one,” Luke tells him, trying not to take offense at his words, “Out of the two of us.”
“And you thought - I was famous?” Din clarifies, looking put off by that for some reason.
“It’s a celebrity gym,” Luke tells him, “I mean, and Fett knows all sorts of people, so I just, ah, made that mental jump myself.”
“Not everyone is a celebrity, you know.”
“You were wearing sunglasses indoors!”
“I like my privacy,” Din says stubbornly, “And Fett’s just my friend,” like that clears everything up. Luke’s still putting his money on some blackmail being involved rather than Fett having friends like a normal human being, let alone with Din.
God, what if he treats Luke differently, now? Half an hour ago, he had thought that the worst thing that could happen would be Din telling him that he needs space, or he doesn’t feel the same way - both of which pale in comparison to Din only expressing this interest now because of who everything thinks he is. It hurts a surprising amount, to think that this - this thing, that maybe if there could be a them, was not meant to be.
Din looks like he’s still processing all of this, and Luke - trying not to look as glum as he feels- picks up his discarded shirt. “It’s fine,” he says preemptively, “I’ll get out of your hair now.”
“Where are you going?” Din asks.
“I’ll call my driver,” Luke says, mustering enough energy for a faint smile, pulling it over his head.
But Din says, “No,” and he gets up as quickly as it takes for him to adjust his shirt. Luke’s eyebrows raise, and he amends - “Only if you want to go. But I don’t want you to.”
Cautious hope starts to bloom in his chest, now. “No?”
“I want you to meet my son,” Din says bluntly, holding his gaze, before he sighs. “Stay. We’ll figure it out.”
Luke lets go of the hem of his shirt. “Yeah?”
“Yes,” Din says, and it's a tentative answer to his smile on his face.
Sleep doesn’t come for either of them soon. But that’s okay because Luke has Din’s head lying on his chest, his fingers carding through his hair, and they talk.
Din tells him about adopting Grogu, not ever intending to be a single father but loving him so fiercely that he changed his life for him - building him a family that he never had for himself. Luke finds himself talking about why he moved out here, trying to build something for himself beyond his family name, his desire to find something for himself, to be happy.
In the dark of the bedroom, with only the moonlight streaming through the window - it’s as intimate as it gets, to not be able to see Din’s face but to know him, so closely, at that moment - and to be known by him, he realizes.
He falls asleep with Din’s fingers linked in his.
The next morning, Luke wakes up to two huge eyes right in front of his face, watching him sleep.
He doesn’t scream, but it’s close to it. “Ah,” he says belatedly, “Good morning… Grogu.”
The kid tilts his head. He really is adorable, Luke thinks, as he sits up in the bed, heart still thudding, as he regards the child sitting cross-legged right next to him. “I’ve heard all about you from your daddy,” Luke says, “I have to say, it’s nice to finally meet you.”
Grogu blinks. Luke sees something in his hands. “Is that a frog you have there?” he asks, and Grogu cautiously brings the stuffed animal closer to his face. “Frogs are the best. What’s his name?”
The kid chews on one of the frog’s legs instead. Luke says, “Ah, forgive me, I’ve forgotten my manners. Mr. Frog,” and he bobs his head, deadly serious to the plushie, “My name’s Luke. It’s an honor to meet you."
Grogu blinks, and then he beams at Luke, so big and bright that the breath catches in his chest at the sight.
“You don’t talk a lot, do you?” Luke asks him. “That’s okay. My sister tells me I talk too much for any one person, probably for several - “
The bedroom door opens, and Din comes in. “Are you - oh,” he finishes, seeing Luke and his son. He’s carrying two mugs, and Luke thinks to himself, I could wake up to that every day.
Din says, “Grogu, this is… my friend, Luke. Luke, this is my son.”
“And the frog?” Luke asks, and Din blinks.
“That’s… Froggie,” Din says, looking very perplexed at this situation.
Luke turns to the boy and the plushie. “Froggie,” he says, “It suits you.”
Grogu makes a sound, and his eyes go between the two of them. “He doesn’t usually talk to strangers,” Din says, hesitantly, and Luke can basically sense his growing anxiety to reassure both Luke and his son at once.
“Luckily,” Luke says, “We’re about to become great friends. Isn’t that right, kiddo?” and he holds out his closed fist to the kid.
Grogu’s tiny hand forms its own fist, and he closes the distance, lightly bumping against Luke’s knuckles. He grins again, at him.
“Froggie,” Grogu repeats, and Luke is sure to fistbump the plushie too, to a delighted cackle from the kid.
Luke smiles at him, and then up at Din, who looks absolutely struck by all of this. “Is that coffee?” he asks.
Din leads Grogu back to the kitchen while Luke gets fully dressed - taking the coffee with him, unfortunately, but Din seems to be too preoccupied to hand him anything around now.
He’s buttoning his jeans when Din comes back into the room. “I think that went pretty well,” Luke starts, as Din comes up to him. “Did you - “
Din’s hand comes around the back of his head, and he brings him in for a slow, deep kiss, successfully derailing any thought in his mind.
They stand there in the middle of the room for a good few minutes, Din’s hands wandering from his hair to the small of his back, keeping him close as his tongue slides across the roof of his mouth, the taste of him sweet and heady.
Din breaks the kiss first, as Luke sways forward into him, chasing him for more. “That’s what I wanted to do to you first thing this morning,” Din says, and he kisses the corner of his mouth before adding, “Even before you made my son’s day.”
“So it went pretty well,” Luke confirms, and Din huffs against his mouth. “I’m glad.”
“My friend Cara is out there,” Din tells him, and Luke recalls him talking about the woman who had helped him adopt Grogu, who had become like a sister to him and an aunt to his son, “And I don’t want to spring too much on you, but I’d like you to meet her.”
“Yeah?” Luke asks, smiling up at him. God, he really is in it deep. He once laughed at Han telling him that he'd fallen a bit in love with Leia the first time they met - and now, look at him.
“I believe her words were, I’m not leaving until you haul that man out here,” Din says, “I apologize beforehand, for her.”
Luke’s pretty sure Din could ask him for his banking information right now and he’d give it with no problem, but he scrapes enough neurons together for a response all the same. “I’d like to meet her,” he says and presses a kiss of his own to the point of Din’s chin. “Shall we?”
“In another minute,” Din rumbles, and he’s tugging in Luke - with no resistance - for another kiss.
When they finally emerge from the bedroom, Din guides him to the kitchen. There’s a woman sitting at the table with Grogu - dark-haired, tattooed arms, who whips her head around at him, a smirk morphing into astonishment at the sight of him.
“Holy shit,” the woman says, recognition dawning over her face. His good mood disappears, and Luke cringes because he probably should have suspected this scenario. “You’re Luke Skywalker.”
“Language,” Din reprimands her, going around behind Grogu’s chair to pick up the coffee pot. “Cara, this is - “
“I know who he is,” Cara says, still looking dumbstruck. “You - Din. You didn’t tell me you’re banging an A-lister!”
Din sets down a glass of juice in front of his son. “Cara.”
“Hey,” Luke says, and he’s caught by how nervous he is, to have her like him - “Din has told me a lot about you.”
Cara’s eyebrows shoot up. “I highly doubt that,” she says, “It took me two years to get Mando’s first name after I met him.”
“It’s a long story,” Din says rather evasively when Luke glances over to him. “She thought I was in a biker gang.”
“You were in a biker gang,“ Cara says, her shock at seeing Luke at the breakfast table immediately replaced by a smug look as she turns to him, “He used to ride this real hunk of junk before Junior came along, but he was doing it because he thought it would impress this bartender - “
“Would you stop it,” Din hisses, and Luke is reminded of him and Leia interacting, especially when Cara sticks out her tongue at him. “Luke. Coffee?”
“Please,” Luke says, more amused than anything else. Din turns his back on both of them to serve it, also to seemingly ignore Cara when she adds, “Me too, loverboy.”
Undeterred, Grogu pushes Froggie towards him, and Luke waves at him. He can feel Cara's eyes on the side of the head.
“So,” Cara says, eyeing him when he meets her gaze, “You’re a Skywalker, huh?”
“Yes,” Luke says.
“Din doesn't usually go for pretty boys," Cara says, "Especially not ones who were on the cover of Vogue kinda pretty."
Luke shrugs. “He likes me all right, I think." Din is being the least amount subtle, pouring the coffee so slowly as to eavesdrop.
“Hm,” Cara says, then, “Your sister’s married, right? Like, monogamously, or do I have a shot?”
Din actually slams the mug down on the table in front of her, and Grogu gurgles out a laugh mimicking Cara’s. Luke thinks he might like her too, as Din puts his - much more gently - in front of him.
“If that ever changes, I’ll be sure to let you know,” Luke tells her, then adds, serenely, “We both have the same type.”
“Oh yeah, what’s that?”
“Biker gang on the outside,” Luke says, “Teddy bear on the inside.” He reaches over, pats Din on his broad bicep.
Din chokes. “I am not - “
Cara laughs. “I like him,” she tells Din. “Skywalker, you’re all right.”
Cara leaves them after breakfast, taking Grogu to the park with her. Din washes the dishes while Luke dries them. It’s nearly disgustingly domestic, the way that Din will hand him a cup and flush a little when Luke drags his fingers against his in taking it, and he is absolutely gone on this man if he didn’t know before.
Drying off a plate, Luke says out loud, “I think that went well.”
“Yeah,” Din says, and he busies himself in adjusting the faucet. “I mean, I’d keep her away from your sister, should they ever meet."
“Would you like that to happen?” Luke asks him, and Din’s hands still. “I think you’d like Leia. Han - well, it’ll either go really well or really badly. But I’d want you to meet them.”
“Even if I’m not famous?” Din turns his head a little, still staring out the kitchen window, and Luke would think he’s kidding, only Din’s voice gets a little quiet as he goes on. “I’m not like that. I’m not - like you, at all. If you want someone who understands that life, it’s not going to be me.”
“I don’t want that,” Luke says, then hurries to clarify - “I want you. I’ve never,” and the words stick in his throat, painfully honest so he has to pull them out, “Felt like this, and I didn’t think I would so soon. But here we are.”
“So here we are,” Din echoes, and the way he’s looking at Luke - it’s not just fiery passion, quick to burn out. It’s something slowly building, growing - something that will last.
He wants it to last.
“Full disclosure,” Luke says, “I have a messed up relationship with my father. I’m still working through that.”
“I’m an orphan,” Din answers.
“If you kill a bug in front of me, I will get upset.”
“I brake for birds and deny it. ”
Luke sets down the cup, slowly. “We’ve done this out of order,” he says, “I think I’m supposed to ask you on a date before I tell you I love you.”
Din matches his smile, and they both must look ridiculous, just standing there and looking at each other. Luke doesn’t know if he’s ever been in love before, but the surety that comes from this - that this man in front of him, that’s all the answer he needs. They have all the time to figure it out.
The sun is rising outside, the light filtering into the kitchen all around them. Luke thinks this is the start to something beautiful indeed.
Later, when the dishes are done and Luke’s just finished sending off an email to his agent - there’s a casting call for the main lead of this interesting script, a sci-fi film centered around this boy who gets caught up in a resistance effort against this dictatorship, and he finds out he's the hero of the galaxy, and Luke has some ideas about the role already - there’s a beep from the opposite side of the room.
“One second,” Din says, and he moves Luke’s legs off his lap to pick up his phone. Luke finishes the email, hits send, just as Din says, “Hm.”
“It’s Fett,” Din says, and he's reading something.
“Uh,” Luke says, “What… did he say?”
“He found out about us. He's not your biggest fan,” Din says, rather diplomatically, “That much is clear.”
He shows Luke the screen of his phone, which appears to be a very long, expletive-filled text. The last message is just >>fucking skywalker? you idiot. hope ur happy
“Whatever did you do to him?” Din asks, and Luke winces.
“Let’s just say he and Han can never be in the same room,” Luke says.