It was the end of one shift and the start of another, a time when Imperial stormtroopers could socialize and catch up on their weekly chores. Somewhere in the sinister depths of the Death Star, two such men were spending their lazy afternoon washing a few loads of clothes. The soldiers had stripped down to their undies for convenience and comfort in the warm humid air of the Imperial laundromat.

One trooper had disassembled his armored suit and was seated at the table, cleaning it piece by piece. "You know, I'm beginning to think this stuff doesn't do anything." The soldier tossed a white shoulder pad in a basket of polished armor. "I mean, when was the last time one of us got shot by a rebel and didn't die?"

His friend chuckled at hearing such a thing said out loud. Nobody made fun of the Empire, nobody.

"And I've never been so uncomfortable," the trooper continued. "Like yesterday, I was guarding the secret entrance to that big garbage pit with the sea-monster in it, and wouldn't you know, I get this little itch right between my shoulder blades. And you can't reach it but it tickles worse and worse. So when nobody was looking, I backed up against a bulkhead and start rubbing up and down on it," the stormtrooper mimicked the squatting motion, "I must'a looked like a space-cow scratching on a fence-post but ooh... by the Force, that felt good!"

"Can't blame ya." his friend snickered while continuing to fold his storm-briefs into neat triangles.

"And how 'bout these helmets they give us. Might as well take a damn bucket, cut out two eye-holes, and stick it on my head. Can't hear nothing, can't see nothing through them black lenses! On patrol last night I tried to arrest a lamp-pole."

The other soldier held up a hand when he heard someone coming. "Shhh..." They could hear the mechanical door at the end of the corridor roll open, followed by the thump thump thump of heavy footsteps. The trooper peeked out the laundromat door. Down the corridor, twenty paces, he caught a glimpse of an all too familiar black cape. He turned back to his friend and urgently whispered, "It's Lord Vader!"

Both men stopped what they were doing and stood at attention, saluting and not even daring to breathe.

The soldiers hoped Vader would continue down the corridor but the footsteps stopped. Vader ducked his head and stepped through the doorway into Imperial laundromat number 84. His dark presence seemed to pull all the warmth from the room and left the troopers feeling even more intimidated, shivering there, wearing only their underwear.

"At ease, soldiers," the diabolical lord said.

"Yes sir, thank you, sir!" the stormtroopers talked over each other, and then gasped for air, expecting something horrible to happen at any second. Vader examined the room, seeming to pay particular attention to the row of washing machines along the wall.

The evil half-robot used the dark side of the Force to levitate a bag of his own dirty laundry onto the table, which brushed the stormtroopers' neatly folded clothes to the floor.

"Since you two are here already," Vader said. "You would not mind doing a load of my laundry as well, would you, soldiers?"

The intimidated stormtroopers glanced at each other and nodded. Vader turned on his heels, making a deep evil chuckle. But before he left the laundromat entirely, the dark lord paused at the entrance. "Make sure my things are pressed, folded and returned to my stateroom by five."

When Lord Vader was far enough down the corridor that he couldn't possibly hear them, one of the troopers opened the drawstring to Vader's laundry bag and looked inside. "That bastard!" the soldier dug through the sack, looking at several tags. "All this stuff says hand-wash only! I tell you what, some day, I'm gonna tell him off good!"

"Yeah, me too!" his friend agreed as they began separating Lord Vader's colors from his blacks.