Weather or Not
By Izzy

The first day of the Winter Fete was the shortest day of the year in Coruscant's northern hemisphere, and the only time it snowed on the planet. Snow still fascinated Luke and Leia, even though they were now eight years old, to the point that they had insisted they not go back to Naboo until after the day. Snow probably wouldn't come to Theed while they were there.

After breakfast, they both went to the window to watch the snow fall. Padmé thought they might also be secretly hoping for their father to show up. Because of him, she herself did not dare go look.

"Is today this short on Naboo?" Luke asked innocently.

"No, silly!" Leia laughed at him. "Naboo's nowhere near that position in its sidereal for either hemisphere!"

"Oh yeah. I forgot. When does it reach its solstice anyway?"

"Ummmm..." Leia left the window and ran over to the terminal to look it up, her bare feet silent on the carpet.

"I've always thought it weird though," Luke went on, "that if you travel far enough on Naboo, suddenly the weather is the exact opposite of what it was."

"But that's the way it is when things are normal," Leia pointed out. "Because a lot of planets are tilted a bit..."

"Yeah, I know. A lot of planets are tilted a bit, and this means that part of the planet is tilted towards the planet's sun, and part of it is tilted away, and that's supposed to make the first part warmer and the second part colder at the same time, and it's the same reason the days are shorter here and longer in Coruscant's southern hemisphere, and the only reason it's snowing all over the planet is because the weather is artificially controlled here on Coruscant. It's still weird."

"What is weird to you might the opposite of weird to others," Padmé reminded her son. "I grew up on Naboo, and when I first came to Coruscant, I found it weird that here the weather was arranged. On Naboo it's not always easy to even predict."

"Yeah," said Luke, "but it's different on Naboo, isn't it? I mean, it's not so easy to get so quickly from one part of the planet to another as you can here, because it's not set up for fast travel there."

"Oh mother!" Leia interrupted, abandoning her search at the console and running over to where Padmé sat, datapad neglected in her lap, face turned towards the wall, away from the window. "Can we go south? This afternoon, maybe? Have it snowing in the daylight for hours? Can we? Please?"

"I don't know," said Luke before Padmé could respond. "It seems...well..."

He was hoping for Anakin to show. As the years had gone on, Padmé had learned not to depend on her husband if he had not given her an absolute promise, and he certainly had not for today. Talking to Luke about this was difficult. She did, however, say, "We can wait a few more hours, I think."

Both the twins were content with that. Leia returned to the window. "Look at the droids they sent out today," she said to Luke. "They don't seem to be doing a very good job, do they?"

"A problem?" This got Padmé to her feet, her dark robes falling about her, the datapad tumbling over them to the floor. She saw immediately the high level of frost on the window; both Luke and Leia were on their tiptoes to peer out of the middle of it. She started to get the feeling something was wrong even before she peered over them.

The snow wasn't supposed to fall that thickly, she immediately knew. It was making it hard to see past one or two lines of buildings outside, and while the traffic was much thinner than it was most days she could make out the vehicles sailing dangerously close to each other, despite the slow pace; visibility was clearly very bad.

"We're not going anywhere if it keeps up like this," she said. "It'll be difficult enough to get to Westport tomorrow."

"Awwww," Leia protested, but Luke said, "She's right, Leia."

Leia's disappointment didn't last. Within minutes she was giggling and pointing at their veranda. "The droids are having a lot of trouble there, aren't they?"

They were. WeatherNet seemed to have lost control of the weather completely; from the window at least, it looked like the platform was icing over. If it got much worse it would turn unusable. Going anywhere that day was now unlikely, and so was receiving any visitors besides possibly Anakin, if he did come, because a little ice just might not stop him from docking. "This is a little abnormal," she said. "Let me check the holofeed."

The holofeed provided an answer; there had been an official weather malfunction at 0637 and they hoped to have it under control by 1600. Meanwhile, WeatherNet advised that noone travel unless they had to.

On reading this, Padmé ran back to the window, determined to look out of it as long as need be. Because if he was advised not to travel, it was actually was far more likely that Anakin Skywalker would show up after all.