the queen's house

Raising Princess Leia was probably all kinds of crazy adventures sometimes

“You can’t make me look!” The five year old princess stomped her foot. “He’ll steal my face!”

“Sweetheart, it’s just a painting,” Bail tried not to cringe in front of the Imperial officer. “It’s not going to steal your face, I promise.”

“Your daughter has a problem with our Emperor, Viceroy?” There was an icy undertone in the officer’s voice that warned that a misstep here could prove costly.

“It’s not the Emperor,” Queen Breha gave the man a winning smile and smoothed Leia’s hair. “She’s skittish around portraits in general.”

“The eyes follow me! They’re gonna stick me in a frame too!” Leia protested, understanding even at her age that it was better to play up her childish side.

Breha thought that the Imperial still looked unconvinced, and so with a silent apology to her daughter she added, “She’s also convinced that she has a little brother who was stolen by goblins. We’re still not certain where she picked up that idea.”

The officer nodded with thinly veiled disgust. “Perhaps you should take more care to monitor who your daughter spends time with, Queen Breha.” The pompous man turned on his heel and stalked away to terrorize someone else in the gallery.

The Organas breathed a collective sigh of relief and Bail swept Leia up into his arms.
“Well done, my Leia,” he whispered. “But from now on, you must be careful what you say about the emperor when there are people about.”

Leia tugged at the braiding on his sleeve and frowned. “It’s still ugly, Papa. It’s not a good painting.”

Bail struggled for words. “It’s…an Impressionist piece, I think.”

“What’s that mean?”

“It means that the artist was under the impression that it looked good,” Breha said dryly. Bail stifled a snort, but did not comment to the contrary.

Bidding perfunctory farewells to the host, the Queen and Viceroy slipped out, making excuses of an overtired kindergartener. Mon Mothma had been able to slip a data chip into Bail’s hand in passing and he had no intention of sticking around to be caught with it. As they met with their bodyguards and strapped themselves into the transport, Leia piped up again.

“Goblins are real though. And they do steal babies.”

She took the twitch on her father’s face as evidence that she was right and that the grown-ups just didn’t want to admit it.

2

The one that was promised || The one kissed by fire

Empress Joséphine’s Sapphire and Diamond Parure, sold by Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen of Holland, to King Louis Philippe of the French in 1821.