The Feet of Diplomacy- A Princess Leia Story
This story is set two years after the Battle of Yavin
The thing about galactic politics was that it never ceased, not even during a civil war. Ever since the Rebellion had destroyed the Death Star over Yavin, Princess Leia Organa had become the Alliances official go-between when it came to convincing planets to join their cause. So, Leia found herself sat in the drab passenger bay of a Carrack Light Cruiser that had been liberated early on in the war, waiting for the tedious trip through hyperspace to end and for the negotiations to begin. She was wearing her favourite white ceremonial gown with a silver cinch belt and white knee high boots. In fact, this outfit was very similar to the one she had been wearing on the Tantive IV before the Death Star, before Han, before Alderaan. Leia still had vivid memories of her home planet being obliterated on a whim and that is what spurred her on to the farthest reaches of the known galaxy. Leia decided to read up on Ryloth and the Twileks official position within the Galactic Empire and whether they could be swayed by the Rebel cause. She sat with her legs crossed regally and jiggled her booted foot in time with an imaginary tune as she absorbed the information about the Empires spice and brutal slavery concerns on Ryloth.
After half an hour, the young Princess was only half way through the overly detailed report that C-3P0 had uploaded to her datapad, so Leia switched it off and decided she needed a nice hot cup of caf. She rose and walked towards the simple galley that was located at the rear of the passenger bay, her boot heels clanging loudly on the bare durasteel decking. After fixing herself what the galley computer claimed was fresh caf, Leia rubbed her eyes and headed back to her seat. A few minutes later Lieutenant Taerel came to inform her that they were about to drop out of hyperspace. Taerel was a pretty young woman who had seen too much of the Empires evil and would be her bodyguard and ships liaison while she was on Ryloth. Weve just received landing instructions and our nav computer is now slaved with Ryloth traffic control Taerel reported crisply as she saluted Leia. Leia gestured for Taerel to stand at ease Thank you Monica is everything prepared for us to disembark? Taerel appeared to be slightly taken aback by Leias use of her first name Erm yes Maam, there will be a select group of Twilek clan leaders and other dignitaries waiting for us at the landing coordinates Leia smiled at the young Lieutenant and nodded Go get yourself a cup of caf before we land, it will steady your nerves Taerel nodded her thanks and headed for the galley.
With the assistance of Ryloths air traffic control computer, the Carrack Cruiser manoeuvred its way onto a landing pad that better resembled a rocky outcrop than a star ship berth. The Twileks of Ryloth lived underground in a maze of dusty caves which shielded them from the deadly wind storms that scoured the red sand deserts of the turbulent planet. Imperial presence on Ryloth was limited and the clan leaders had promised Leia immunity so long as the negotiations were conducted smoothly and in secret. Leia straitened her belt and made sure her hair was still wrapped in a tame braid before stepping towards the egress ramp. Taerel pushed the ramps opening mechanism and straitened her officers cap and stood beside Leia in an obviously defensive manner. The ramp descended to reveal a dimly red lit cavern coated in the crimson dust from the surface. Stood at the end of the rocky outcrop were four rather corpulent male Twileks, their head tails swathed in fine silks and gems. Alongside the clan leaders were several female Twileks with gentle skin tones of teal or olive. The female Twileks were wearing brightly coloured flared trousers with intricate patterns sewn into the luminous material. They wore simple vest tops with plunging necklines and their smooth feet were bare.
Slave girls Leia thought with disgust as she descended the ramp, how could they enslave their own people. Just as Leia and Taerel reached the bottom of the ramp, an older model Cybot Galactica protocol droid approached them. The droids silver casing was scorched and dented in several places and when it spoke in its feminine voice you could hear the vocoder rattling inside its housing. The clan masters of Ryloth extend their warmest welcome to Princess Leia Organa and her assistant. However the clan masters do expect you to follow a few rules of their culture as long as you are staying with us
Such as? Leia asked when the droid seemed to pause.
Well first of all, we would appreciate you leaving any weapons you may have onboard your vessel Leia nodded to Taerel who removed her DL-44 blaster pistol from her holster and tossed it back up the boarding ramp. The droid nodded gratefully and continued Secondly any communications equipment you may have on your person must also be left on your ship Im afraid Leia bristled a bit at this request but she removed her comlink from its pouch on her cinch belt and placed it on the ramp. It took a few seconds for Taerel to part with her communications headset but after a hard glance from Leia she unhooked it and tossed it up the boarding ramp.
Finally, the clan elders would appreciate it if you removed your footwear as to not traipse the impure dirt of the universe into their caverns the droid gestured down at their boots as it dropped this bombshell and Leia blanched. She hated going barefoot at the best of times, but the idea of her meticulously pedicured and sensitive toes gracing this hard red dirt unshod made her cringe.
Is that re..really necessary? Leia asked apprehensively but she already knew the answer.
The elders demand it Im afraid the droid replied apologetically and Leia sighed in defeat.
Leia lifted her left foot up and tugged her boot off. Reluctantly, she placed her pale and sensitive barefoot onto the cold metal of the ramp and felt the diamond shaped mesh dig into her lovely and smooth sole. Leia lifted her other foot and yanked the boot off and dropped t onto the ramp with a clang. She placed her other barefoot down and wiggled her pale white toes self consciously. She hated the fact that her toes were round and full instead of slender and elongated like her mothers had been. However she loved how shapely her feet were and how soft and supple the skin on her soles was. Leia had been taught that to show ones feet in public was impolite, particularly in the royal court of Alderaan. As such, she had always been forced to wear boots or slippers around the palace and its grounds, even in the hot summers where sandals or bare feet would have been far more comfortable.
The pale skin tone of Leias bare feet matched her gown perfectly and she found herself warming to the idea of showing her feet off, toes and all. The diamond mesh was still digging into her supple soles so she held her breath and stepped onto the rough cavern floor barefoot. Leia turned to face Taerel, who had not yet made a move to remove her own boots. Ditch the footwear Lieutenant she ordered and Taerel sat down on the decking and started tugging her own boots off muttering angrily to herself as she did so. Eventually, Monicas slender toes revealed themselves and she tested the ground with the toes of her left foot before she joined Leia on the rough floor of the cavern. The coarse dirt and rock dug into Leias poor moisturised toes as she walked as regally as possible towards their waiting entourage. Taerel seemed to be having more problems going barefooted on the rough stonework and Leia could hear her cursing in Huttesse as they walked.
Leia noticed as they walked that Monica had painted her toe nails a lovely shade of crimson red, which set off the golden hue of her toes perfectly. The Princess actually found herself envious of how slender and perfectly tanned Monicas little feet were and made a mental note to paint her own toes as soon as she got back to Echo Base. The lieutenant continued to hobble behind Leia, stopping every so often to brush the coarse sand off the slightly pink soles of her feet. Leia on the other hand resisted that urge and continued to gracefully step on the painful sand and tried her best not to think about the sharp rocks that kept poking at her supple soles. Leia glanced down at her round little toes and tried not to grimace as she realised just how dusty they had become walking barefoot across the red dirt. They reached the clan leaders who greeted them and made plans for them to meet in the local clan hall that evening. They were left in the care of the slave girls, who led them through the dusty streets of a Twilek village to their guest quarters.
The more she walked on the rough sand, the more Leia missed her lovely white boots with their comfortable fluffy cloned Wampa hair interiors. Her sensitive bare soles stung from the abrasive sand and Leia was getting tired of Monicas slow pace and constant complaining. The coarse sand didnt seem to be a problem for the young Twilek girls, who glided across the sand in their bare feet as if it was the finest carpeting in the galaxy. What was even more shocking was just how perfect the young girls feet were, some were a lovely tone of teal, while others were a lovely deep red. All of their toes were slender and ultra smooth and some of the girls had placed adhesive gems on their toe nails which contrasted nicely with their coloured skin. Their soles were callous free and had cute wrinkles around the heels and arches and they looked as if they were used to walking across cotton wool not rocks. As Leia followed the girls, she found herself wishing she had had more opportunities to go barefoot growing up.
Leia was truly shocked when they reached the quarters they would be staying in during the negotiations. The elegantly carved arches of the hotel belayed a richness that Leia would not have expected to find on Ryloth. What is this place? Leia asked a crimson skinned Twilek girl.
Its the sector Moffs private retreat, but he has not inspected Ryloth in over a year so we thought they would be the most comfortable quarters we could find for you the girl replied softly. Leia nodded and thought about refusing the quarters because of whom they belonged to but thought better of it for two reasons. The first reason was that she felt as if it was a genuinely nice gesture on the parts of the clan leaders and the other reason was that Leias feet were now absolutely killing her so she bowed to her escorts and entered the property with Taerel. The moment Leias soft soles touched the lush carpeting of the Moffs greeting hall, she forgot all decorum and sighed with absolute relief as the soft material stroked her bare feet. Monica sighed with relief as well and collapsed into a chair in a waiting alcove and began rubbing her lovely long toes I cant believe we have to walk barefoot across that dirt, its like stepping on broken glass she moaned. Leia rolled her eyes and began to brush some of the dust off her pale toes in a vain hope to make her feet look presentable.
They entered the lobbys turbolift and rode it all the way to the guest quarters on the third floor of the opulent retreat. They each took a room each as Leia wished to have some privacy while she freshened up from their trip from the cruiser. As soon as Leia entered the room, Leias eyes locked onto the luxury foot bath that was inbuilt into one of the chairs near the Fresher. She walked over to the chair and sat in it, slipping her small and dirty feet into the luxury bath. The controls to the bath were inlaid into the chairs arm rest and Leia pushed the express bath option. Suddenly, jets of amazing hot water began spraying all over pale toes and Leia could feel sonic massagers kick in and rub her heels and soles. It was the most wonderful thing she had ever had near her feet and Leia found herself groaning in pleasure as the massagers moved on to her round toes and began working the stress out of the whole situation. Her high arches tingled with sonic energy and Leia wished she could keep her delicate feet in the bath forever.
When the bath was finished, Leia walked over to the Fresher and ran a sonic shower. Leia stripped and slid into the shower cubicle and felt the lovely hot water permeate her pores and cleanse the horrible red dirt from her lithe form. The bubbly water pooled around her naked feet and felt like she was stepping barefoot on clouds. After her shower, Leia redressed and walked across to the luxury four poster bed and stretched out on it for a quick nap. However she awoke after only a few minutes and began to pace across the inch deep luxury nova carpeting, wanting the negotiations to begin right now. However the gorgeous carpeting began slipping between her pale toes and rubbing along her high arches and supple heels. The feeling was of ecstasy and Leia found herself relaxing the more she walked across the wonderful carpeting. These rooms are designed as a treat for your feet Leia thought as she dug her bare little toes deeper into the luxury floor covering.
The clan leaders sent a lovely teal toned Twilek girl to escort her to the negotiations. The girls feet were bare and perfect like the rest of the Twilek females Leia had seen and the Princess couldnt help asking How do you keep your feet so amazing? The girl paused for a second and contemplated Leias question carefully.
Well because we go barefoot all the time, we dont even feel the sand and as soon as we get back to our huts we bathe our feet so we dont get calluses or blisters
Leia smiled and nodded just as a red Twilek led Taerel into the corridor. Are we ready for the negotiations? she asked breezily as she drew circles with her crimson toes on the lush carpeting. Leia was slightly suspicious about the way the girl seemed so nervous and shared a knowing glance with Monica who was also watching the girls elegant toes as they traced yet more circles in the deep carpeting. Of course Leia replied calmly Do lead on They were led from their quarters and back through the village towards the clan masters hall. Leia realised why she had felt suspicious as they walked into the hall and straight into several E-11 blaster rifles held by a squad of Imperial Stormtroopers. Ah Princess, nice to finally make your acquaintance Leia spun around to see a young woman in a Moffs uniform stood behind her, her black boots glistening in the red light of the cavern.
To be continued.