Cat's In The Cradle And The Silver Spoon
I must apologize. To myself, I suppose. It has been such a very long time I have last made an entry in this journal. Been very busy, lots on my mind.
I will never forget the feeling that overtook me when the tortured Rebel pilot screamed out the name of the "hero" who destroyed Tarkin's Death Star. After days of my personal attentions he had been reduced to a shell of a man. Hairless, disfigured, hunched, quivering, stammering, inhuman -- he closed his eyes and screeched: "Skywalker! Dantooine!"
"We have already been to Dantooine, you lying Rebel scum," shouted the interrogator. I put my hand on his arm, and signalled silence.
"What was that name again?" I asked.
"Skywalker! Luke Skywalker!" the creature croaked.
Luke...the name of Shmi's father. The coincidence was too great. There may be a lot of people named Skywalker in this galaxy, but not too many insurgents bearing obscure nomadic-trader given names. I knew at once the truth: she may have died in childbirth, but the baby had survived. It was a boy, and now he was almost a man.
He is my son. And the Force is strong with him.
Upon my return to Coruscant I knelt before my master Darth Sidious in the Imperial Palace, and found myself reporting everything that had transpired except for what I had learned about the pilot responsible for ending the Death Star. "We can build new Death Stars," said Sidious, flexing his fingers before him. "The silencing of Alderaan will reverberate for years to come."
"I appreciate your forgiveness," I said.
"Do not misunderstand me," he enunciated crisply. "You have failed, my servant. Your compulsion to face Obi-wan Kenobi distracted you from the essence of events, and blinded you to the living Force."
"Yes, my master."
"Now matters are worse," he sighed. "I had foreseen the end of the Rebellion through the Death Star, and now that destiny lies in tatters. I shall have to redesign my trap, with a new Death Star. I shall start over, to erase the stink of your incompetence in this matter."
"I will redeem your fealty, my master, I swear it."
"So it indeed shall be," he agreed. "Your sole purpose in this world is now to hunt down the Rebel Alliance. Find them, and together we will eradicate their scourge and bring order to the galaxy."
"As you wish," I replied, bowing again and taking my leave.
Now I am aboard Executor in my chambers, reviewing intelligence reports pouring in from my sinister agents across the galaxy. I spent hours reading the Imperial library profiles of the pirate Han Solo, and the farmer Owen Lars. I learned that Mon Mothma has fled the capital and openly joined the Alliance. I investigated leads pointing to Vaspar, Dantooine, Ord Mantell...
The galaxy is wide, but I will find them. I will twist the bones of every terrorist leader until they give up young Skywalker. I will prepare for my ascension to the throne by using one fell stroke to both destroy the Rebellion and gain a gifted apprentice. My purpose is clear to me.
The Rebel Alliance may have won some meagre victories against the galactic peace, but make no mistake: the Empire strikes back.
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