Rey watched as the blue streaks making up hyperspace focused into distant pinpoints of light as the Millennium Falcon shot out of lightspeed before a beautiful planet made up of white clouds and blue oceans.
She heard footsteps and turned to find Leia, Luke, and Ben entering the cockpit. Leia’s eyes widened with wonder.
“What planet is this?” she asked.
“Carcuun,” Rey said, punching a few buttons on the dashboard. “It’s been the Resistance’s home since last year.”
“Ben knew about it from his days serving the First Order,” Luke told Leia. “He told us that it was a remote planet the First Order would never think of looking to find us.”
Just as he said that they entered the hemisphere of the planet. Through thick white clouds they flew, whiteness surrounding them and barring any view of the planet. And then suddenly, they burst out of the clouds.
Leia gasped as she beheld a sprawling city located in the middle of a roiling ocean with massive spires disappearing into the clouds that twirled about themselves in double-helixes of shimmering crystal.
“Welcome to New Alderaan,” Rey spoke with a warm smile.
Leia’s eyes watered hearing the name. “New Alderaan? H-how can this be?”
“When we first arrived here last year it was a remote city inhabited only by the natives of this planet but Commander Dameron decided to codename it New Alderaan in honor of you,” Rey continued. She looked back. “We knew one day you would return.”
Leia could only stare out of the cockpit window in awe as they flew through the city, people in long white robes strolling by in the streets below. She could see Resistance soldiers running about like they used to on D’Qar. X-Wings were parked and large Resistance cruisers sat stationed on tarmacs that jutted out to sea.
They eventually began to land where a crowd was waiting for them. When Leia looked closer a large smile came to her face, for standing at the head of the crowd was a brown-skinned man wearing a beautiful red cape that couldn’t be missed. Only one person in the world could pull off a cape that grand looking.
“Lando,” she whispered to herself.
Ben left the cockpit, already heading to the exit. Leia quickly followed him, her heart pounding with excitement and anticipation to be seen by her fellow Resistance soldiers again. Luke followed along behind her and Rey, once landing the ship, trailed closely after them.
They hurriedly made their way through the ship to the door where the ramp opened and Leia found herself staring at the shimmering cobblestone of the city’s landing pad. She took a deep breath. Rey placed a hand on her shoulder.
“It’s going to be okay,” she told Leia. “You’re home now.”
Leia nodded, smiling at Rey with a thankful expression, before walking down that ramp to be bombarded by raucous cheering and clapping. Lando Calrissian and a beautiful brown-skinned woman at his side fancily clad in a gorgeous gown of blue and gold and crowned with a band of gold over her long curly hair grinned at Leia with bright smiles.
As she approached Lando he grabbed her hands, squeezing them warmly.
“Leia, Leia, Leia. You look as beautiful as ever,” Lando said.
“You are truly a sight for sore eyes my friend. Thank you. Thank you for helping the Resistance when they needed it most.”
“Anything for you my dear friend.”
The brown-skinned woman stepped forward. “My name is Pearl. I have heard many lovely things about you over the years. It is so nice to finally meet you in person.”
“And it is a joy to meet you,” Leia said.
“Come,” Lando said. “Let’s get you cleaned, let’s get you dressed in some better clothes, and let’s catch up. I want to know what’s happened to my friend after all of these years.”
And then there was almost a deafening hush that fell over the crowd as Ben Solo appeared from the Falcon. Even Lando’s smile slightly lessened as he watched her son stomp off to an unknown destination.
Rey watched him leave with a concerned expression. She had tried to encourage him to stick around more to show that he wasn’t an enemy anymore but he wouldn’t have it. She understood how he felt though. Yes, he had been administered to by Resistance doctors and given a new arm. Yes, he had helped the Resistance a number of times by going out and conducting top-secret missions with his Knights of Ren. But that didn’t stop everyone from looking at him with raw fear in their eyes or unparalleled hatred because of his past.
With the joy of Leia’s arrival somewhat dwindled Leia turned to Lando. “Well, where’s my room?”