I have this headcanon that Leia was a total surprise for the empire.
They probably laughed when they heard that a teenage girl had joined the Senate; they probably thought that a princess would be so easy to break. They never expected so much trouble from her or that she’d ever have much of an impact on their plans. Like most people, they underestimated the teenage girl.
But she stood face to face with two of the most feared men in the galaxy, and she withstood everything they threw at her. They never thought that she would have the strength to withstand all the pain, or that she’d have the cleverness to redirect them to Dantooine. Can you imagine how differently things might have turned out for the empire if they had not so vastly underestimated Leia’s strength and fury and intelligence?
A word to the wise: Don’t underestimate teenage girls or princesses. They just might end up destroying you.
…I was writing something like this five minutes ago!
Leia is furious with Darth Vader, because anger and willpower is how she’s always gotten what she wants. (She is so his daughter.) How DARE he try to intimidate her? How DARE he step foot on her ship like a big luck void, sucking away all of her usual good luck?
(Something questionable is going on with the Force when Leia and Vader go toe-to-toe.)
And Vader HATES her. Because she looks so much like Padme. And she has the audacity to stand in front of him looking like his wife. And she is not diplomatic, she does not try to smooth things over, she acts nothing like Padme. How dare Bail have such a daughter? (On any number of levels–years ago the rumors about Bail and Padme had made their way freely through the Senate, and whose baby was she carrying, anyway? And Anakin had been forced to grit his teeth and endure them.)
Leia Organa has personally thwarted at least three of his plans in her brief tenure as pseudo-adult. He has a galaxy to organize, and she is in his way. How dare she stand in front of him with that look on her face–that furious, burn-it-down look? (It is his look, the face a copy of his, but he doesn’t recognize it.)