Star Wars: A Valentine Story
February 2003
"Breaking the Ice", 24ppg, $3.50

Writer: Judd Winick
Illustrator, Cover Artist: Paul Chadwick
Colorist: Ken Steacy
Letterer: Jason Hvam
Editor: Diana Schutz
Assistant Editor: Jeremy Barlow
Book Design: Lia Ribacchi
Publisher: Mike Richardson

R2-D2 (Artoo Detoo)

Hoth, Yavin 4

Rebel Troopers

Rebel Medium Transport, medical frigate, X-wing starfighter, Millennium Falcon, M-Class Fighters


A special one-shot Valentine's Day story from 2003.

This is the first appearance of an M-class fighter, which, not surprisingly, looks like the letter 'M'.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...amid the war and turmoil, the power of the enemy, a sovereign leader and a brave warrior may have discovered the beginnings of love. Or maybe not.

On board the Rebel frigate things are heating up as Leia and Han are arguing about something. Leia ends the spat by slugging Han in the stomach before marching off.

Luke comes over to see if Han is okay and ask what the fuss is all about. Han tells him that he was only letting Leia know that he and Chewie were going to launch the supply vessels down to Hoth. Then they were going to get the Falcon repaired and leave. Luke can't get a word in edgewise as Han continues to explain what got Leia so riled up. The young pilot finally tells Han that he should just stay away from Leia.

Later, Han is trying to convince a rebel technician that they need to get down to the planet in one of the carriers. The tech tells them that a pair of M-class fighters need to get taken down. Han offers to pilot one with Chewie when Leia comes up behind him and says they need both, and that she will pilot the other one.

As the pilot the fighters out of the rebel frigate, Chewbacca is giving Han a hard time for having to ride with Leia as his co-pilot. Han then proceeds to act his usual charming self, which turns Leia off to the point where she admits that she is not even interested in him. As they start to argue again, alarm klaxons go off as they enter a large show storm in the planet's atmosphere.

The two ships dive through the storm, trying to make a way past the blizzard, but Chewie's ship drifts away as Han's second engine is shorn off and they crash into a snow bank.

Some time later, Leia wakes up to see Han putting on a parka and attempting to walk through the snowstorm to find his wookiee partner. He collapses in the cold, and Leia drags him back inside, jibing him for not bothering to even suit up properly. He begins to panic about his partner being lost -- out there, and even goes as far to blame Leia. If she hadn't come along, then Han and Chewie would have been together.

Han calms down, and says that they need to ration the heat. He offers space under his blanket to Leia, so that they can share body heat. She gives him a look, and he amidst he doesn't like it any better than she does. They drift off into sleep.

Leia awakes to Han on the radio trying to raise Chewie again. She says that the wookiee seems very close, and Han relates a story of one of their adventures. The were transporting Barcarian claw salt when they were boarded by Natalon Core bandits and shackled with only 30 minutes of air left. Chewbacca broke his own wrist to get out of the manacles, freed Han and got them both to a station to repair the ship.

Maybe it's the close quarters, or Han's stories that seem to get to Leia, but she slowly leans in towards him. They are about to kiss when the hatch flies open and a pair of rebel pilots and Chewbacca. It turns out he actually made it to base and came back with help.

Later in Echo Base, Han and Chewie are working to repair the hyperdrive on the Falcon. Leia asks him if he's still leaving next week. He says that he was going to stay around and help out on a trade run near Ord Mantell. She thanks him and he tells her she's welcome. But there's something a little different in their tone. Solo face flushes slightly and Leia has a warm glow in her heart.

Trade Paperbacks and Alternate Covers
Star Wars Omnibus: At War With The Empire #2 Empire Trade Paperback #4

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