I`m writing a new book, so you guys can know what I`ve been doing during all my disappearences. And why I had to take a break. And the disturbance in the Force. And a bunch of other things. Because I know you`ve all been wondering. Well anyway, here`s a sneak preview. I`ll show you the cover illustration soon. I drew it. 🙂
It would happen again. As it did every night. My heartbeat would increase rapidly. There would be a fluttery, hollow felling in my chest, as if my heart was going to beat right out it. I would feel like my chest and throat were constricting. If I could be gasping for breath, I would be. I would feel lightheaded, and there would be a pounding behind my right eye. If I tried to move, I would feel nauseous. Then, as suddenly as it came, it would be gone.
It happened again. Same as every night. I wouldn`t be able to sleep afterwards. I waited for the feeling to pass before silently sliding out of my cot. I didn`t bother to put on my glove or my helmet. I didn`t need my helmet. Just the mechanical lungs and other technology wired into my body to keep me breathing. But not the helmet. And the glove was just something I wore for security, to hide my prosthetic hand. I didn`t like looking at it.
I slunk out into the courtyard, into the fresh air, and sat down on a bench by the flowers. I could be alone with my thoughts. Just me and the stars. It reminded me of when I was a young slave on Tatooine, when everything was simple. I would gaze at the stars in just the same way, dreaming of distant galaxies. I missed those days. Nothing had been complicated. Life hadn`t been easy, but I was content. Even though I longed to be free and explore the galaxies and stars I would often stare at. If only I had known then what would happen to me.
The French door behind me opened. Luke. He sat down on the bench next to me.
“Father, what`s wrong? I know something`s troubling you. Don`t try to hide it. This is the fourteenth day in a row. I can sense you are restless. Confused. Afraid. I can help,” he said.
I sighed. I could sense his concern. He truly wanted to help. “I can feel the Dark Side. It surrounds me. I can feel my former master. The Dark Lord of the Sith. He`s alive. But how can that be? We both witnessed his death. I killed him. But he has returned. I know he has. He`ll come after me. And you. He`ll take what I love away from again. He`ll use me. But I feel his powers have diminished, while mine have been restored. I will not become his puppet again. He will not win. But I fear there is more than just him. The Dark Side is strong,” I replied, my voice rising with hatred. My eyes flashed. The Dark Side.
There was a pause as Luke contemplated this. “This is disturbing,” he said at last. “You`re right, I don`t see how he could survive. It seems we underestimated the enemy, if what you say is true. I agree, I think he will try to control you. We have to be careful. Very careful. Being a vessel of the Force means he will try to use you for the Dark Side. We underestimated him. We definitely underestimated him, if he survived that.”
“I should have known! I knew better! I knew what he was capable of! He always told me a Jedi is not dead until you find the body. That is true with the Sith. We never actually saw him die. We just saw him fall, and assumed he died. I learned not to assume things. I should have known! I knew what he was capable of!” I shouted angrily, standing up. I kicked the bench and punched the air. I was mad at myself, but mostly I was mad at the Emperor. My hatred for him filled me with overwhelming darkness. My eyes flashed yellow for just a second.
“Father!” Luke said sharply. I sat back down. He placed his mechanical hand over mine. “Let go of your hate. He is using you. Calm down. Let go of your anger. No one could have predicted this. The Dark Side will try to get to you again, but I won`t let it. I won`t let Darth Vader return. I promise you now, Father, I will not let that happen again,” he continued forcefully. I believed him. Darth Vader would not return. I was better than that.
The first hints of morning were a relief. Luke had fallen asleep with his head resting in my lap. The soft golden glow cast by the sun was almost a reassurance of Luke`s promise. Yet I still couldn`t help thinking.
I had a higher midi-chlorian count than any other being that ever lived, including Luke and Master Yoda. I could read thoughts and sense emotions. It was virtually impossible to lie to me, as long as my head was clear. I could snap a man`s neck with a mere flick of my wrist. I didn`t even have to be in the same room for the Force to have an effect. I could Force-choke through a hologram, and bend others to my will. But the one thing I was powerless against was the Dark Side. And I hated feeling helpless. It was frustrating.
May the Force be with you, and don`t let fear decide your fate!