A/N: I'm trying to get all my stories done before school starts next week because I know when school starts, I'll have hardly any time for updating stories and the last thing I want to do is keep you guys waiting for updates.
Chapter Ten: How to Save a Life
Luke was terrified. He didn't know what was going to happen or how in the worlds they were planning to use him to transform people into droids. But he knew one thing… he did not want to be a part of it! Unfortunately, it seemed that he was the crucial element to making this machine-like thing work.
Suddenly, the door flew open to reveal Vader and a squad or two of stormtroopers behind him. Vader's lightsaber was ignited and he looked furious. But something about his Force presence had changed since the last time Luke had seen him. He couldn't pin-point it, but he knew something was different.
Being strapped to the dark, metal table, Luke could do nothing but watch as Vader swooped in like an avenging god and began killing all the Ssi-ruuk. He didn't even need those stormtroopers there behind him because Vader did all the work before they could do a thing.
When all the Ssi-ruuk in the room had been killed, Vader came over to where Luke lay.
"Are you alright?" he asked urgently as he helped release Luke from his bonds that were holding him down on the table.
"Yes," Luke said breathlessly. He was about to say more when more Ssi-ruuk, alerted by the noises of battle from a few seconds earlier, came bounding into the room.
Vader stood in front of Luke, protecting him from the on-coming aliens. When they finally came up to him, he was too engrossed in his fighting to notice Luke slip out the door behind him.
As soon as Vader was busy with the Ssi-ruuk again, Luke ran out, heading toward the room where Han and Leia were still being held prisoner in. He wasn't going to leave without them.
Anakin took another swing at the Ssi-ruuk. Their scales were hard and it actually proved to be a slight challenge to his trusty lightsaber.
His lightsaber came down on yet another Ssi-ruuk. He aimed for the head. Unfortunately he underestimated the substance that made up the Ssi-ruuk's helmet. His lightsaber broke in half and lay on the floor. The blade and the handle unattached from each other, and the blade disappeared. The energy source of the lightsaber blade came from the hilt which, now since it was unattached, couldn't offer any energy to the blade.
Luckily, a couple stormtroopers shot at the armor's week spots and were able to kill the Ssi-ruuk.
When the skirmish was done, Anakin turned around. It was then that he noticed that his son was not in the room. He started to panick.
Using the Force, he followed the boy's Force presence through the ship. Where was he going?
Luke finally made it to the floor where Han and Leia were on. He knew exactly where they were. Going to the room, he quickly unlocked the door and opened it. He was slightly taken back when he saw Han and Leia hugging each other.
"Okay… what did I miss?"
Han jumped in surprise and came running up to embrace his young friend. "Luke! What happened?"
"And why aren't you wearing a shirt?" Leia asked in a more skeptic voice.
Luke looked down and realized that he'd forgotten to grab his shirt when he ran out of the droid making room. "It's a long story."
In the meantime, Anakin, using Force-enhanced speed, came running down the hall in search of his son. He sighed in relief when he saw him embracing his friends. But his relief was short lived.
A few yards away in a shadowy spot in the corridor was a Ssi-ruuk aiming his blaster at Luke!
Anakin didn't have time to wonder why the Ssi-ruuk had suddenly decided that Luke needed to be killed. All he knew was that he needed to save Luke.
Anakin's hand automatically went to his belt, but he suddenly remembered that his lightsaber had been cut in half. He looked around for something else, but he didn't have time to think; the Ssi-ruuk was raising his blaster to take a shot.
Anakin did the only thing that came to mind… he ran as fast as he could and threw himself in front of Luke right when blaster shot was fired. Anakin felt a searing pain in his chest and went down on the floor. Blood came spurring out of his chest.
The shot was fatal.
When Luke saw what happened, he looked at Vader, then up at the Ssi-ruuk. With a surge of energy that he was clueless as to where it had come from, he caused the blaster the Ssi-ruuk was holding to fly to his hands. Taking a well-aimed shot, he killed the Ssi-ruuk, then dropped to his knees to check on Vader.
"Father!? Father, are you alright!?"
"FATHER!?" Han and Leia exclaimed.
But Luke wasn't paying attention to them. His focus was completely on the dark form lying on the floor.
"It's hopeless for me, Luke," Anakin said, getting the words out between labored breaths. You must go. Get out of here."
"I'm not leaving you," Luke said firmly. Then he added softly, "You saved my life."
"Anything, for you, son."
Luke didn't realize he was crying until he saw his tears splash on his father's armor.
"Luke…" Anakin said. His life was leaving him quickly. He didn't have time. "Take off my mask. Please"
"But… father…" Luke hesitated.
"Just do it," Anakin said calmly. "I want you to see me as I really am before… I die."
Luke nodded. Han and Leia watched in amazement as Luke gently took off the mask to reveal his fathers unscarred, smooth face and his shaggy light hair.
"Father?" Luke said in surprise.
Anakin, even though it hurt, took the rest of the armor off, revealing his Jedi robes, and smiled. "I knew you'd see me, Luke."
Luke couldn't believe this. Vader, the Dark Lord of the Sith was gone. There was not a trace of that left in Anakin's face. This was his father. The father he'd dreamed about back on Tatooine, the father he'd always wanted was right here… and Luke loved him.
Something inside of Luke broke, and a whole torrent of tears came falling down his face. Luke buried himself in his father's arms. "Don't die, please don't die! ... I need you!"
"It can't be stopped," Anakin said, wrapping his arms around his son. "I love you."
"I love you too, father," Luke sobbed. "So very much." Luke cried for a few more minutes. When he stopped he looked up, and realized that his father was no longer breathing.
Anakin Skywalker was dead.
"Nooo…" Luke moaned.
Even Leia and Han were upset by this. They knelt down next to Luke and comforted him as much as they could. But they didn't have time. Suddenly a blaster bold whizzed by their heads.
"Time to go, junior," Han said, trying to lift his friend to his feet.
"No!" Luke said. "I'm not leaving without him!"
"He's dead, buddy, we have to go!"
"I'm taking him with me!"
Just as Luke said, he didn't leave without his father. He took Anakin's body up in his arms. When Han and Leia saw that there was no stopping him, they stooped down to help. With much struggling and difficulty, they got Anakin's body down with them to the docking bay.
When they got there, they got a huge surprise. Artoo and Threepio where lying there in a heap. They had been turned off. Luke switched them on, and Leia explained their situation.
"We've got to leave!" she declared.
"Really, I hadn't noticed!" Han declared sarcastically.
Suddenly, they saw the last thing they expected. It was the Falcon! Being piloted by Chewbacca!
With renewed enthusiasm, they ran to where the Falcon was landing. Chewie came down the ramp and relieved them of Anakin's body. They ran up the ramp and Han rushed to the cock-pit and started up the Falcon again.
As he did this, Han brushed his hand over the controls. "Man, I missed, ya' baby," he murmured to his ship.
As soon as they came out of the docking bay, small, alien fighters attacked them shooting repeatedly.
"Hey, guys!" Han yelled into the ship com. "I need ya'll at the guns!"
Luke and Leia rushed to man the guns while Chewie lay the body down on the floor and joined Han in the cock-pit.
They maneuvered through the multiplying ships. Some were shot down; work of Luke and Leia, but they were still, way outnumbered. The Executor had already been destroyed.
"We can't last much, longer, you guys," Han said, to everyone in general.
He would have loved to jump into lightspeed and leave all these guys behind, but there wasn't any room, and trying to make the jump in a crowded area like this could result in their deaths by crashing into numerous alien fighters.
It seemed like all hope was lost.
Luke was shooting as many fighters as possible, but he knew they couldn't last forever…
Suddenly, a whole group of ships appeared as they had just come out of hyperspace.
"It's Rouge Squadron!" Luke exclaimed disbelievingly.
And so it was. Rouge Squadron, led by Wedge Antillies came swooping down in perfect formation, shooting at the fighters.
"Mind if we join?" Wedge's voice came over the com.
"Always welcome," Han answered.
With Rouge Squadron helping, the odds were evened out fairly. Maybe they had a fighting chance after all…
One hour later, the battle was over. Both the Falcon, and Rouge Squadron were in hyperspace. When they were safe, Wedge explained the whole story.
As it turned out, Wedge and the whole squadron, after finding out what the Alliance was planning to do, they agreed full well with Luke, Han and Leia. They purposefully got themselves kicked out as well, and from then on, they'd been looking for Luke, Han and Leia.
"I'm glad we found you when we did," Wedge said.
"Yeah," Han laughed. "Me too."
In the meantime, Luke wasn't feeling half as triumphant. He was sitting in the Falcon's main living space next to Anakin Skywalker's body.
"Your father turned out to be a pretty good guy," Luke heard Han say behind him.
Luke nodded. He could speak. He was afraid that if he tried, he'd start crying again.
Leia came in as well and stood behind him. "It's okay Luke."
Luke looked up at her, and tried to smile. When he looked back, he screamed. His father's body began fading away, then it disappeared entirely.
"What's happening!?" he yelled.
Something shining in the corner drew his attention.
It was his father! Ghost Anakin walked toward him. "Hello, Luke."
Luke was too happy to speak, but he soon got over that. "Father! You're… you're…"
"A ghost," Anakin said. "I never liked ghosts until I saw your mother as one."
"You saw my mother?" Luke gasped.
Anakin nodded. "Yes. And I've just seen her now. We'll be visiting you Luke, so there's no reason to mourn."
"Can't I see mom?"
Anakin shook his head. "Not right now. Later." Here he looked at Leia. "I've just learned something that we will both need to explain."
Then as soon as he had come, he was gone again. There was silence for a few moments.
"I'm getting therapy," Han muttered.
Luke and Leia looked at him, then back at each other. Then out of the silence, they started laughing.
A/N: I hope this ending was satisfying. I'm so glad that I've finally written it. Writing a climax is very difficult and itimidating.