Shmi Tales

[September 2000]

Fandom: Star Wars
Title: Shmi Tales
PenName: Empress Vader
Character(s): Shmi
Rating: PG
Summary: Shmi tries to hide her mysterious pregnancy from her masters.
Notes: I had this lofty idea I was going to write a detailed story about Shmi’s years in slavery, but I never quite finished it.
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters created by George Lucas. No copyright infringement intended.

1. Not so lonely anymore

“Mommy,” She heard her younger self scream in the night. The memory wasn’t clear, she remembered the smoke, the explosions. Space pirates throwing mask over every moving creature in the place, capturing them for slavers. An ever since then she’d been alone, until now. She forced herself awake, away from the memory.
Another starship, on her way to another alien world, how many had she been on in the outer rim? But this time was different, she had a little one hidden deep inside of her. She’d give anything to be able to shout to the world about her miracle, but that would be stupid and Shmi wasn’t stupid.
Shmi placed a hand over the small bulge in her belly. So far she’d been able to hide it with loose fitting clothes. She knew her master and he would see a baby as a cash commodity, not a miracle. And her Mistress would just hate the fact Shmi cared about anything. Besides, her master would want an explanation and there wasn’t one. This baby had grown inside of her without aid of a male, he had no father. This baby’s mother was still very much a virgin. She couldn’t risk falling in love or having friends, those type of things were to easily snatched from a slave. But her baby was different, it needed her. It wasn’t a matter of choice, they would never take her baby the way they had snatched her from her parents. She couldn’t even remember if Shmi was her birth name or something her enslavers had given her, that wouldn’t happen to her child.
The red light went on her bracelet. That meant come to Smolock’s Aid ASP. Smolock was her master’s wife, Shmi’s mistress. Their was a guest, she knew that. Smolock loved to show off her human slave to her friends. Their was a certain power that went with controlling a sentient being, a being that could love, hate, and judge you. Shmi climbed out of her bed and rearranged her clothes to camouflage the growing bulge. Then she went to fetch the “mistresses” tea. She would be glad when she arrived on Malastare for these Podracing things. It was the first time she would see one and, who knows, maybe she would enjoy it.

Shmi could tell Smolock was angry she had taken so long, her feeler was twitching in annoyance. Shmi gracefully entered the room carrying the tea and sugar. Smolocks company, a basic speaking Toydarian, was hovering just above the chair he should have been sitting in.
Smolock was an insectiod type alien with long feelers on her head and protruding mouth. Her language was an odd type of twitter. It had taken months of protocol droid translation for Shmi to figure out the basic patterns of her mistresses language. Smolock understood basic quite well, she just couldn’t speak it. To aid their communication, Shmi wore a bracelet that flashed different colors for general commands when Smolock wanted her. She half hoped she would be sold to this more verbally versatile creature so the language barrier would die. But it wouldn’t happen, she was the property of Smolock’s husband, not Smolock. However, she had been assigned as a personal servant to Smolock.
She supposed Smolock’s guest was a racer, or sponsored one. That’s the only guest that seemed to be around these days.
“Wilde will be winning this race methinks,” the Toydarian said.
“[Watto you have a knack for picking talented racers],” Smolock replied in her harsh language. “[Unfortunately, their talents often making them more interested in saving their vehicles than winning the race.]“
“What are you saying?” Watto asked.
“[Your racers love the rush, the skill required to pilot the machine successfully. They care little for winning. Now Spectros, he will win at all cost.]“
“We will see,” Watto replied. “Nice heathy slave you got there.”
“[Yes, she is.]“
“And your profit will soon be going up, she is pregnant.”
“[What!!!]” Smolock replied, eyes blazing.
Shmi froze. She could be beaten and lose her baby. No, her husband was a cruel boss, but having one slave mature into two meant more worth, not less. She hated thinking of herself this way, she wasn’t cattle. But thinking it was necessary for her survival, she had to weigh how important she was to her masters.
“How did you know?” Shmi asked the Toydarian. She was speaking out of turn and without being spoken to, but she had to know.
“I’ve been around humans a long time, long enough to know there habits. You are not as big as your clothes make you, your hiding the bulge.”
Smolock got up and smacked Shmi. She ripped off Shmi’s shirt. The small bulge was very visible when there was nothing but skin.
“[When?]” the insectoid Alien demanded.
“I don’t know,” Shmi replied, “I have never been touched.”
“[Liar],” Smolock said smacking the girl again. She fell to the ground.
“Hold on,” Watto said floating between the slave and mistress. “Your hurting valuable property. So what if she’s lying, you just turned one slave into two.”
Watto may have saw her as property, but Smolock’s vanity was at stake. A baby would mean Shmi splitting her attention, loving someone, removing the solitude and servitude from her slave. There was no one vainer than her mistress. Better she sold her to Watto now, it would solve a lot of her immediate problems. Watto looked like he knew a good deal.
“How much for the lot,” Wattos asked.
“[They're not for sale,]” Smolock said grabbing the slave and shoving her into the bedroom. The door locked behind Shmi, there was no sound in the room. She could now focus on her child.

She heard the buzzing outside her door. To unfamiliar ears it would have sounded like bunched up twitters. But she knew Mislosh, her master, was here and he was angry. He’d been with their racer all day, but it seemed he’d heard from Watto about his growing slave collection and been offered a deal. He also heard how his wife had almost destroyed his property. After the argument with Smolock (in which her mistress received a few hits) Smolock brought Shmi some food, told her she would see a doctor in a day when they arrived on Malastare.

Malastare was an odd world, it’s spaceport was buzzing with all types of species. It was hard to tell if Malastare was home to any of them. Another slave had been assigned to her former mistress. Mislosh was a wealthy man, he had carried 4 of his many slaves with him on this trip. He had simply put Paco, a young boy, in charge of his wife and put Shmi in his own service.
It occurred to her, during the trip here, that finding out the baby had mysteriously appeared in her womb and finding out she was a virgin, would lead one of two theories, Miracle or Curse. There was only one solution, find a human male or the equivalent to end her virgin status. But when would she have time? And more importantly, could she go through with it?
They had entered the pod racer hanger now. The pilots of these vehicles were odd little things. Most of them were multi-limbed with a flexibility that boggled the mind. There were a few with the basic two arms two legs structure, but this was rare. There were no human racers. In fact, there weren’t many humans to be found.
“[We will now go get you examined,]” Mislosh said guiding her out of the hanger bay. He had left his other slaves to assist his racer.
Mislosh had a speeder waiting. It already carried his wife and her new servant. Shmi couldn’t resist a smirk, by simply procreating she had come under her master’s protection. She was now valuable, two for the price of one. But it would only last as long as she and her baby were one. When he was born, he could be taken away or sold away.
They landed on the outskirts of the city and walked to the tall medical building. Smolock headed into the city’s marketplace with her servant while Mislosh took her in the Medical facility. Her fingers twisted nervously all the way in.

“It’s true Mishlosh,” the medical assistant said handing her master the chart. “She was not impregnated by natural means.”
The medical assistant was an odd being with a short muzzle and long sharp teeth. No matter where she went, the creatures seemed to be from all over the universe. She couldn’t tell if any of them called Malastare home originally. Mislosh examined the chart shaking his big insectoid head.
“[It's impossible. Humans can't reproduce on their own.]” Mishlosh stared at Shmi, standing humbly with her head bowed.
“There are other ways to impregnate a human,” the medical assistant said. “But it would have been next to impossible to do so without you or your wife having knowledge of it.”
“[Is it impossible that a mistake was made,]“
“There are no mistakes,” the medical assistant defended, glaring at him.
“[So you say, but after the race I will be coming back for a second opinion.]“
Mislosh stomped out. Shmi followed holding her belly. She wasn’t paying attention, her mind was reeling. What would he do once the pregnancy was confirmed as unaided. It was while she was shuffling these thoughts that she walked into the blind man. She said sorry right away. Mislosh helped the man up and scolded her for her carelessness. Then the man looked at her, which was impossible because he was visibly blind. But still it seemed he saw something.
“The cursed mother,” the man yelled. “She who will bring on our destruction. She must be destroyed.” The man ran out the room yelling. This being a medical facility, all dismissed him as disturbed and went on there way. Except that Medical Assistant, he stared at her. She pretended to ignore him and ran out the door behind her master.

She had been left in her room after they returned from the podracing hanger. She enjoyed the silent time with her baby. A boy, she had been told. What would she name her son? She closed her eyes and and tried to think of a family name. “Lisander,” it popped into her head like a whisper. Who was he, her father, no someone else. Luke, Jake, Hayden, David, James, they were some of the more exotic names she knew. Forget it, there was no family past to link to, no home world to link to, only the stars. And a final haunting memory of being snatched away from her mother’s arms. Her arms, the picture flashed in her mind of a woman holding her as tight as possible and being hit over the head. That was when she had screamed “Mommy.”
Mishlosh didn’t know she’d heard him negotiating in the next room. He probably felt it would be more profitable to sell her now than to wait for her demon spawn to be born. Okay, he hadn’t used those words, but he the incident at the doctors had disturbed him. Now he had three guest, Watto, an alien from Ovin IV, and a Space Pirate. They’d all inspected her like a piece of meat and now all she wanted was a bath, but none was forthcoming. She was in no condition to be sold to a space pirate, Watto seemed decent enough, the Ovin IV alien spoke excellent basic and seemed very educated. Why he was involved with such disreputable types, even wealthy ones, was beyond her. Except that he enjoyed the dangerous sport of Podracing. She had come to understand that more than half the racers usually lost their life before the bloody sport was over. It didn’t surprise her. The machine paid for being fast by being very delicate. She didn’t even know if she wanted to attend the race tonight.
She heard the bid go up on her across the room. The Ovin IV alien who had seemed less interested than Watto and the Space pirate, had suddenly out bid them both. Her fate was rapidly switching hands and players. She couldn’t stand to think about it so she went to sleep.
In the morning, they’d headed back to the stadium. She wasn’t thrilled about seeing the race anymore and now she was sorry she slept through the negotiations for her destiny. Then she smiled, she knew her destiny, to be a mother. If she closed her eyes she could see the little pink face of her son, new to the world. She couldn’t run, because the transmitter in her body would destroy her and her baby.
She sat beside her master in his private box as the racers took off. She somehow felt connected to these powerful machines, to the little lives inside of them. She flinched as racer after racer went down, but she couldn’t close her eyes. A lump was rising in her throat, what would she do if they ever tried to take her from her son?
“Mommy,” she heard her young voice yell again.

Her master’s racer did not win the race. In fact, his racer didn’t walk away from this one. But instead of morning the loss of a living being, Mislosh complained about the loss of money and property. Her son would never have such a horrible disregard for life. The Ovin IV alien walked up to Mislosh as soon as they reached the floor below the stands. Mislosh grumbled and pushed Shmi toward the alien. Was she part of the bet? The alien smiled a crooked smile and took her away. She suddenly felt the kick of her little son. Her ownership had changed hands again, but this time she wasn’t alone, her son was with her.


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