Father and Son
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

by Valerie Vancollie
valeriev84@hotmail.com




Note: This story takes place eighteen years before 'Star Wars: A New Hope'.


Obi-Wan Kenobi vanished into the Force as Darth Vader's glowing red lightsaber sliced through him. His brown, smoking, Jedi robes crumpled to the desert sand and his lightsaber deactivated and fell spinning to the ground. Vader looked down at the robes and lightsaber of his former master as his mind raced.

He had been ordered by the Emperor to recover some top-secret plans stolen by the weak, young Rebel Alliance. He had hated the mission from the moment he had received his orders, and he had decided to hand as much of the workload over to the stormtroopers as was possible. And yet when the time had come when he had tracked the plans to a pair of droids who had landed on Tatooine he had come along on an impulse.

They had approached the house to which the droids had been sold after having been captured by jawas. The stormtroopers had then gone in and brought out Owen and Beru Lars. Vader had been surprised to see them, especially here, on Tatooine. But then they had had to have been somewhere. Vader had demanded them to give him the droids that they had bought, but Owen claimed that they had sold the droids to a neighbor. Vader had felt through the Force that Owen was telling the truth. He had hesitated for a second, but then he had ordered Owen and Beru killed.

He couldn't leave any evidence behind that the Empire had been looking for the stolen plans, that would only tell the Rebels that the plans they had were really important, if they didn't know that already. But there was no taking chances. The stormtroopers had then started destroying Owen's house when Obi-Wan had suddenly appeared.

Vader had felt his presence a moment before Obi-Wan came into view. He had immediately drawn his lightsaber and ignited it. The stormtroopers noticed Obi-Wan just as Vader drew his lightsaber. They were confused and uncertain of what to do: 'Should they attack and kill the intruder or was the Dark Lord planning on doing that?' None of them had ever seen Vader ignite his lightsaber before, half of them hadn't even had the slightest clue as to what it was, the other half had heard rumors which they had dismissed as being nothing more then just that, rumors.

The decision had been made for them as Vader had slowly approached Obi-Wan. He had wasted very little words as his great anger at and hatred for Obi-Wan drove him to attack his former master. The armor, the breading mask, it was all Obi-Wan's fault. The last time they had fought he had fallen into a pit of molten lava after Obi-Wan had struck him down. This time he would have his revenge.

Obi-Wan had tried to persuade Vader to come with him and to renounce the dark side, but Vader would hear none of it. And Obi-Wan hadn't pressed too hard, no it had seemed as if Obi-Wan was preoccupied with something else. It was as if he was worried about something. Vader had dismissed it as fear of being killed, because it was obvious from the beginning of the battle that the advantage was all Vader's.

But now, now that Obi-Wan was dead something bothered him about Obi-Wan's preoccupation. And then suddenly he felt it. Coming from somewhere within the house there was such a strong sense of fear that Vader knew it could only be coming from a Force sensitive individual, and someone with lots of untrained potential.

An untrained Force individual, no wonder Obi-Wan had been worried. He had been afraid of his discovering the existence of this individual. He decided that if Obi-Wan thought that the protection of this individual was worth his death, then Vader knew that it was worth looking into.

"Wait," he ordered as the stormtroopers were about to continue destroying the house. "Wait out here."

Vader then left an astonished commander outside as he entered the remains of the door. He followed the current of fear to the back of the house, as far away from front door as was possible. Vader wondered if this had been done on purpose, but he was distracted from his thoughts as he entered the bedroom and found a small two year old boy huddled on the bed. The boy was curled up into as ball at the head of the bed with his blankets pulled up around him, and in his arms the boy held a small, worn-out teddy-bear.

The boy looked up as Vader entered the room and his bright blue eyes widened in fear as his eyes fell on Vader. Vader stood at the entrance of the room looking down at the small sandy haired boy. He was surprised at the amount of Force potential radiating from the boy, whoever he was he definitely came from a strong Jedi bloodline. He watched as the boy looked at him, his fear growing, and yet the boy didn't cry. Vader had a nagging feeling that he knew this boy, or someone related to him, but he couldn't quite place who or where. He was about to dig deeper into the boy's mind when the boy finally found his voice.

"Uncle Owen! Aunt Beru!" he cried out, feeling tears start to swell in his eyes. "Uncle Owen! Aunt Ber..."

"They're dead," Vader replied, calmly interrupting the boy.

But even though his voice was calm his mind was racing, Uncle Owen? Aunt Beru?? This was definitely not Obi-Wan's child, of that much he was certain. And he knew for a fact that Obi-Wan was Owen's only brother, and a half-brother at that. Plus as far as he could remember Beru was an only child, besides there was no Force potential in her family and this boy definitely came from a strong Jedi bloodline.

"Dead?" the boy squeaked.

Vader just looked at the boy and nodded. There was something about the boy, his ability to talk to him despite his fears? For Vader could clearly feel how scared the boy was, and yet he still had the courage to ask him questions.

"Like father?"

This caught Vader's full attention, the boy's father was dead? Had his father been a Jedi perhaps? But if so why would they tell the boy, he might blow his own cover by talking about it.

"Your father?" he asked.

"Yes," the boy nodded, and Vader picked up on a sudden feeling of pain. "Anakin."

"Anakin!?" Vader boomed, suddenly incredulous.

The boy jumped at Vader's sudden change of tone, then he pulled the blankets over his head trying to hide. But he couldn't hide his mind from Vader. Vader immediately entered the boy's mind and searched around, determined to find if what the boy had said was true. As soon as the boy had spoken that name memories had come rushing back to him, memories and a sudden feeling of recognition. Recognition of the boy, even though he had never meet him before. As he entered the boy's mind he was able to confirm what he had first thought, this boy was his son!

So this was why Obi-Wan had appeared even after Owen's death, he wanted to keep his son from him. Obi-Wan had wanted to steal his son away from him as he had stolen his wife, who must have been pregnant at the time. A new rage filled him, and the only thing that satisfied it was the fact that he had only just killed Obi-Wan. Vader let the rage pass as he turned his attention back to his new found son.

The boy was just lifting the blankets to see if he was still there. Vader looked down into his boy's ice blue eyes as he admired the boy's courage. Any other child would have gone hiding under the blankets at the very sight of him, but this boy, his boy, had held his ground until he had shouted. Perhaps he knew, somewhere deep down, that Vader was his father. Vader couldn't be sure, but he knew that the boy had great Force potential, so it was possible.

"What's your name?" he demanded, but kept his voice low so as not to scare his son into hiding again.

His son looked at him for a moment, confused by Vader's constant change of moods. He hesitated for another moment, but then he seemed to decide that there was no harm in telling his name.

"Luke," he mumbled, ready to dive underneath his blankets if Vader made any sudden movement or if he yelled again.

"Luke," Vader said to himself. "Luke Skywalker."

"I didn't tell you my last name," Luke said before he could stop himself.

Beneath his mask Vader smiled, his boy was clever as well as courageous. At that moment he decided to take Luke with him. To take his son with him and to train him as a Dark Jedi. In time Luke would become very powerful, and unafraid to use his power for any reason. Vader suddenly realized that young Luke was watching him curiously.

"Who are you?" Luke peeped when he realized that he had Vader's attention.

Somehow his initial fear of the man had disappeared. He felt like he knew this man, like he could trust this man. But he wasn't sure, he had after all just yelled at him a few moments ago.

"I am your father," Vader said as he picked up on Luke's thoughts.

"M...my...my father?" Luke asked his blue eyes suddenly filling with confusion. "B...but Uncle Owen said you were dead."

"Owen Lars lied to you," Vader informed his son. "And he's not your uncle and Beru isn't your aunt. You don't have an uncle or an aunt."

"Anakin?"

Luke finally managed to say as he tried to process all the information he was suddenly getting. 'Uncle Owen wasn't his uncle? Aunt Beru wasn't his aunt? And his father was alive?'

"No!" Vader said sternly. "My name is Vader, Darth Vader. Anakin was the name of a weak man long ago."

Luke's mouth opened and closed as he tried to move backwards, away from this tall man dressed in black. He didn't like being yelled at or being talked to in the way his father was talking now. Once he realized that he was already as far away as he could get he just looked up at Vader and wondered what would happen next.

Vader realized that he was once again scaring his son. He cursed Obi-Wan again for his being impaired like this. He had once had a strong, healthy body with sandy blonde hair, not unlike the boy's. At this thought he suddenly realized how much the boy looked like he once had. Luke had his ice-blue eyes and although he had his mother's complexion he looked more like him then he looked like Padme. Padme, that name brought with it a mixture of emotions. But he didn't have time for the past now, no he had to take the boy and go back out, for he could feel that the commander was starting to get uneasy.

He looked back to young Luke, who was still sitting at the far end of his bed, his teddy-bear held in his right hand. The teddy-bear would have to go, but not now. No, the boy would probably throw a tantrum and that was the one thing he didn't have the time or patience for at the moment.

"Come, Luke," he said stepping towards the boy, holding out his right hand.

But Luke shrank back, uncertain. 'Go? Where?'

"I'm taking you with me, son" Vader replied reading Luke's thoughts. "We're going to Coruscant."

"Coruscant?" Luke asked visibly interested.

"A big planet covered with nothing but city," Vader replied wondering if Luke had ever been in any kind of spaceship, he had always been interested in piloting so there was a good chance Luke would be too. "We'll get there in a big ship."

Vader immediately knew that he had hit home, for Luke's eyes lit up like two Christmas tree lights.

"A ship?" the boy asked. "Can I fly it?"

"No," Vader said not sure whether to be angry or amused. "But I'll teach you how to fly when you're older, if you come with me now."

Luke didn't need anymore encouragement, being with his father, going to another planet and learning how to fly, it was all too much to pass up. Picking up on Luke's thoughts Vader smiled. His son was still at the age at which he was easy to persuade, which meant that he wouldn't really resist the dark side.

Luke crawled out from under the blankets and across the bed to take his father's pre-offered hand with his left hand as he held his teddy-bear in his right hand. As soon as Luke touched his hand Vader let the Force flow through his son. Luke's eyes widened in surprise as the Force cursed through him, but he didn't pull away. No, something about the feeling called out to him. He liked the feeling, and yet he was scared of it. Then before he could decide what to do the feeling was gone.

Vader watched his son's reaction and then he waited until Luke's questioning eyes were on him once more, looking for answers as the boy tried unsuccessfully to find his tongue.

"The Force," Vader stated simply.

"The Force?" Luke finally managed to ask.

"Yes. I'll teach you how to use it later," Vader promised seeing the scared interest in Luke's eyes. "Now come," He ordered as he helped Luke off the bed.

Luke followed his father without further questions, but his mind was racing. He had gotten too much information too fast. He was all confused, so he decided to just let his father decide what to do. This decided he concentrated on keeping up with his father. Vader took big steps, even for an adult, so Luke had to take four steps for every step his father took. But Luke didn't complain, Uncle Owen had always punished him when he complained about something. He winced at the thought of the last punishment he had received from his uncle. Or wasn't Owen his uncle?

Vader had been thinking about Luke's training when he felt Luke wince. He looked down at the boy and realized that he was almost going to fast for the boy to keep up, and yet the boy hadn't complained. He slowed down as they reached the stairs leading up to the remains of the front door.

"There are some storm troopers outside, so be quiet and don't talk like a good boy, okay?" Vader ordered.

Luke looked up at him and nodded. He had no intention of getting his father angry, he didn't want to get yelled at again. He just held on to Vader's right hand as they climbed the stairs and walked out into the cool, starry night. Luke looked at the storm troopers with wide eyes, they were all dressed in white like him, but they wore helmets with black holes at the eyes and big black frowns.

The commander snapped to attention as Lord Vader appeared at the door of the house. He had just been wondering what had become of the Dark Lord when he reappeared with a small boy next to him. The commander was astounded at the fact that the Dark Lord had even let the boy live, let alone that the boy seemed to be more afraid of him and the storm troopers then of Lord Vader.

"Destroy the house and track down those droids, Commander," Vader ordered as he stopped in front of the man. "Destroy any and all evidence of your presence."

"As you wish mi'lord," the commander replied, his eyes flickering briefly down at the boy holding the Dark Lord's hand.

"Continue," he ordered as he turned to face the storm troopers.

After giving his orders Vader lead Luke over to one of the Imperial speeders they had come in and opened the door. Luke climbed into the passenger seat while he got in behind the controls. He could have had one of the storm troopers drive them back, but he wanted to be alone with Luke. That way he could examine the boy's Force aura without any other presence's close enough to send off false signals.

It was a two hour journey from the Lars home to Mos Eisley, at first everything was fine, Luke looked out the window and at Vader whenever he thought his father wasn't watching. But after half an hour he had started to fidget and Vader had used the Force to put the boy to sleep. After that Vader drove the speeder while going through his son's mind. He found that Luke was both interested in and scared off the Force, he also found that his son really wanted to learn how to fly. Vader smiled at this, his son had the same interests as he once had had. Whether he had talent was yet to be determined, but he was definitely strong with the Force.

As they neared Mos Eisley Vader released Luke from his Force grip and used one hand to shake the boy awake.

"Uung?" Luke mumbled as he woke up, unsure of where he was.

"We're almost at Mos Eisley," Vader responded.

This snapped Luke awake as he remembered what had happened in the middle on the night. As he sat up he saw that it was now morning and he could see several buildings to his right.

"Where's the ship?" he asked turning to his father.

"It's up in the atmosphere," Vader replied pointing towards the sky. "We'll take a shuttle up to it."

Luke nodded and turned to watch the buildings grow bigger as they got closer. He also noticed that there were spaceships going in and out of the town. He watched them, fascinated, he could barley wait until he would be flying a ship. He stopped to wonder what kind of ship he would fly and he was about to ask his father when Vader said:

"You'll fly a TIE advance."

Luke just looked at him, confusion written all over his face. 'How did his father know he was going to ask that?'

"Remember the Force?" Vader asked.

"Yes," Luke replied remembering the funny sensation.

"Well I knew what you were going to ask through the Force," Vader explained. "The Force is all around us and with it we can do many things. The Emperor and I will teach you how to use it to do whatever you want."

"The Emperor?"

"Yes," Vader replied wondering what his master would say. "He is a master of the dark side of the Force and you are to do everything he says, okay?"

"Yes," Luke replied eager to please his father.

"Good, for if you don't do what he tells you he will punish you," Vader warned his son.

Luke nodded knowing perfectly well that disobedience led to punishment, Owen had done it often enough. He then turned his attention to the rapidly growing town. They rode the last ten minutes in silence, but Vader could plainly feel Luke's awe and fascination as they rode into the town itself. He shook his head slightly, thinking of what Luke's reaction would be when he saw Coruscant.

Vader pulled the speeder up outside the spaceport and got out, he then held the door open for Luke. Luke quickly got out and tried to look everywhere at once, but his attention was caught by the two white-armored men standing on either side of a door. He looked at them and then at his father, wondering if they were like the men outside his home.

"All storm troopers wear that white armor," Vader responded as he started towards the door.

Luke quickly ran after him and took his father's right hand with his left, all the while holding his teddy-bear in his right hand. Vader looked down as Luke took his hand and noticed how much smaller his son's hand was. He looked back up as the storm troopers snapped to attention, then he walked through the door and into the docking bay. Once through the door Luke stopped to look at the shuttle, it looked like a giant bird with its wings up. The shuttle ramp was down making it look like the giant bird had its beak open and was waiting to be fed.

Vader let go of Luke's hand and placed his hand on Luke's shoulder nudging the awe-struck boy forward. Luke didn't need much encouragement, he wanted to be in a spaceship. He walked forward and up the ramp. Inside the shuttle Vader lead him to the passenger seats and sat down letting Luke have the window seat. Then he touched the com button.

"Take us up to the Executor," he ordered.

"Yes mi'lord," came the reply at which Vader turned off the com.

A couple of seconds later there was the sound of starting engines and they lifted off. Luke sat on his knees looking out the window, his teddy-bear lying on the seat next to him. Vader reached over and picked up the teddy-bear to examine it. He found that the bear was even more worn then he had thought, he wondered why Luke even liked the damn thing, but he didn't want a tantrum so he laid the bear back on the seat next to Luke.

Luke stayed by the window the whole way up, leaving Vader to his thoughts. He wondered what his master's reaction would be. He would be pleased with Kenobi's death, but Luke's existence could bring up a mixture of reactions. There was even the possibility that he would kill Luke, but Vader didn't think so, Luke was strong with the Force and would make a valuable servant to his master once fully trained.

Luke was astonished at the size of his father's ship, he had heard Vader call it the Executor and wondered at the strange name. As they landed Luke saw that there were many storm troopers outside, all lined up in rows.

"Come Luke," Vader said as he got up.

Luke picked up his teddy-bear with his right hand and followed his father to the ramp. Vader descended the ramp with purposeful steps heading towards the Admiral who was just entering the docking bay. Luke followed close behind his father, a little scared by all the storm troopers, for none of them seemed to move.

As the Admiral hurried towards Lord Vader he wondered who the boy was, he couldn't be older than two Standard years. The Admiral knew that Lord Vader had been tracking down some Rebel spies who had stolen top-secret information, and when they had caught the Rebels they had learned that the information had been sent down to Tatooine in a couple of droids. When they learned this the Admiral had been sure that the Dark Lord would send storm troopers after the droids, but Lord Vader had gone along with them. That had surprised the Admiral, and now Lord Vader had a child with him. As he approached Lord Vader he saw that the boy had stopped and was looking around.

Luke looked around in awe, there were so many people in here. He also saw several other shuttles and some droids he had never seen before. He stepped closer to one of the storm troopers wondering if they were really human, for he hadn't seen them move at all, he knew that he couldn't stand still that long. But the storm trooper didn't move as he got closer to him and this scared Luke. He looked around for his father and saw that he was talking to a man dressed in green. Luke turned away from the storm trooper and ran to his father. When he reached his father he took his father's right hand with his left hand.

"You will notify me when they've found the plans," Vader was saying when Luke took his hand.

"A...as you wish mi'lord," Admiral Geraldine replied, stuttering with surprise as the boy took Lord Vader's hand.

"Good," Vader stated and then he moved past the Admiral with Luke at his side.

Admiral Geraldine stood rooted to the spot in surprise at the boy's apparent lack of fear of the Dark Lord. Everyone on board the Executor, including himself, was terrified of Lord Vader, and they had reason to be afraid, Lord Vader executed anyone who failed him. And he killed them without laying a hand on them. And now suddenly this two year old boy shows up and he just takes the Dark Lord's hand as if it is the normal thing to do. Whoever the boy was, he was definitely important.

Vader lead Luke through the halls of the Executor to his quarters, ignoring the astonished looks he was receiving from the crew and troops. Luke however was looking at each and everyone of them, trying to figure out what they were staring at. Then, just as they reached Vader's quarters, Luke realized that everyone he had seen was both male and grown up, he hadn't seen any women or children. He was about to ask his father why this was so when Vader lead him into a room with a giant pod-like structure. The pod was now open and Luke could see that there was a chair and some controls in the pod.

"You will be staying in here and in these rooms until we reach Coruscant," Vader informed his son indicating the two doors on the far side of the room.

"What's in there?" Luke asked looking at the doors.

"The one on the right leads to the sparring room and the room to the left has a holo projector, it is where I receive orders from the Emperor while on board the Executor."

Luke nodded his response and looked around the room. Vader watched him for a moment and then he went to the pod and sat down in the chair. He then turned on the voice com and ordered:

"Admiral, bring an extra cot up to my quarters."

"As you wish mi'lord."

Vader turned off the com and then looked down in surprise as Luke climbed onto his lap.

"Father?" Luke said looking up at him with his innocent blue eyes.

"Yes," Vader replied.

"Why do you wear a mask?"

It was an innocent enough question, but Vader's anger shot straight up, not at Luke but at Obi-Wan. Obi-Wan had deliberately struck him down into the lava pit. Just as he was about to tell Luke that it wasn't his business a thought occurred to him.

"The Force has two sides, Luke," he explained. "The dark side and the light side. People who use the light side are called Jedi and people who use the dark side are called Sith."

"Are you Sithe?" Luke asked stumbling over the strange word.

"Sith," Vader corrected. "And yes, I'm Sith, a Dark Lord of the Sith. The dark side of the Force is stronger and gives you more power then the light side. But the Jedi thought that the light side was better and they used to kill anyone who used the dark side. One of the Jedi, Obi-Wan, tried to kill me because he was jealous of my power. He pushed me into a pit full of molten lava."

Vader stopped for a moment as Luke's eyes grew wide with horror and then anger.

"He's a bad man!" Luke declared fiercely.

"Yes, he's also the man that stole you from me," Vader said as he put his hand on Luke's shoulder.

As expected Luke's anger shot up, and just when it reached its peak Vader once again let the Force flow through Luke. Luke sat frozen as he felt the Force again, only this time the feeling was stronger. As soon as Vader saw that Luke noticed the difference he released Luke's shoulder.

"Was that the dark side?"

"Yes," Vader replied. "What you felt the first time was the light side, do you feel how the dark side is stronger?"

"Yes," Luke replied nodding. "What's the difference?"

"If you let your anger and hate free you will use the dark side, but if you refuse your anger and hate then you will be using the light side," Vader replied trying to make it as easy as possible, so that Luke would understand.

Luke seemed to ponder this and then he looked up at his father again:

"But Uncle Owen said that anger was bad."

"He lied to you," Vader replied mentally cursing Owen for trying to ruin his son. "He didn't want you to use the dark side, you see he is Obi-Wan's half-brother!"

Vader felt Luke's surprise and remained silent as it slowly turned to anger. He also felt that Luke was unconsciously using the Force to fuel his anger. Vader smiled at this, he had known his boy was strong with the Force and this just proved how strong. Just then the door opened and a storm trooper walked in pushing a folded spare cot in front of him.

"Put it in the corner," Vader ordered indicating the corner closest to the pod.

"Yes mi'lord."

Luke watched the trooper and wondered if the cot was for him. The storm trooper unfolded the cot, saluted and then left the room wondering at the boy sitting on the Dark Lord's lap.

"Your bed," Vader stated just as the com beeped. "What is it Admiral?"

"The Emperor demands you to make contact with him," came the Admiral's voice.

Luke was about to ask what the Emperor wanted when Vader put his hand over the boy's mouth and Luke kept quiet.

"Have there been any reports from the recovery team?" Vader asked wondering what the Emperor wanted.

"No mi'lord."

At this Vader turned of the com and removed his hand from Luke's mouth.

"You are not to speak while I'm busy, is that understood?" Vader demanded sternly, glaring down at Luke.

"Y...yes father," Luke replied.

"Good," Vader replied picking up his son and setting him down on the floor as he got up. "Stay here and don't touch anything while I contact the Emperor, okay?"

Luke nodded as he went and sat down on his cot. Vader looked at him for a moment and then went to make contact with the Emperor. He went through the door, down a few stairs and knelt in the middle of the projecting circle. A couple of minutes later an enlargement of the Emperor's face appeared in the air in front of him.

"What is thy bidding my master?" he asked keeping his head low.

"There was a slight disturbance in the Force," the Emperor replied eyeing his servant.

"Yes my master," Vader replied. "I killed Obi-Wan Kenobi."

"Kenobi?" the Emperor asked surprised.

"Yes my master. He appeared right after I had his half-brother killed."

"After his half-brother was killed?" the Emperor asked.

"I had Owen and Beru Lars killed, but young Luke was still alive," Vader replied nervously. "It seems my wife was pregnant when Kenobi took her away."

"What?!" the Emperor exclaimed angrily. "You have a son?"

"Yes my master, Luke Skywalker."

There was a moment of tense silence as the Emperor thought about this new information.

"How old is the boy?"

"Two, master."

"Two? Is he with you now?" the Emperor demanded.

"Yes, he's in the other room and he's had no Jedi training of any kind."

"Is the Force strong with him?"

"Yes, my master," Vader replied.

"Bring him to me when you've recovered the plans," the Emperor ordered.

"As you wish," Vader replied just before his master cut the connection.

Vader remained kneeling there as he thought about Palpatine's reaction. He was interested in seeing the boy for himself, which probably meant that he wanted to see how much potential Luke held. After seeing Luke he would decide whether training him would be worth the effort. Vader was pretty sure that his master would let Luke live once he saw him.

Vader then got to his feet and went back to check on his son. When he re-entered the room he found Luke was asleep on his cot. 'Just as well,' he thought to himself as he decided to go to the bridge. But just to make sure that Luke didn't wake up and fiddle with anything while he was away he used the Force to put a sleep net over his son. Then, after observing his son for a moment, he left the room heading for the bridge.


Two days later,


"Using the Force we can call objects to us that are on the other side of the room," Vader explained to Luke who was sitting on the floor in front of him.

"How?" Luke asked, genuinely interested.

"You just will it into your hand, you pretend that it is in your hand," Vader explained deciding to have Luke try it for himself. Using the Force he pulled Luke's teddy-bear from his hands and held it up in the air, just out of his son's reach.

"Hey!" Luke exclaimed angrily as he jumped to his feet. "Give me my teddy back."

"Try to get it back," Vader replied amused.

Luke looked at him for a moment and then he held out his hand and willed the bear into it. Vader smiled as he felt Luke's tug at the bear, but instead of releasing the bear he tightened his Force grip on the bear, intending for Luke to get angrier. When Luke found that his father wasn't just going to give him his teddy back his anger rose and he remembered what his father had told him, to use his anger, so he did. As soon as Luke used his anger Vader let him have his bear back knowing that his son had learned his lesson.

The bear flew straight into his hand and Luke looked down at it triumphaly. Suddenly he found that he wanted to do it again, not with his bear, but with something else. He looked up at his father about to ask him if he could try it again when he felt like a heavy, wet blanket was being put around him. Even in his surprise he automatically pushed at it with the Force, and found that the blanket went away.

"Good," Vader praised. "That is enough for now. We will arrive at Coruscant in three days and then you will meet the Emperor. The Emperor will be your master and you're to do everything he says," Vader reminded Luke.

Luke nodded and went over to sit on his father's lap.

"What is Coruscant like?"

"Coruscant is a big planet that is totally covered with buildings. But not just any buildings, for the buildings are build on top of other building and there are some really tall buildings reaching high into the sky," Vader explained as Luke listened.

"How high?" Luke asked.

"Over two hundred times higher then the highest building on Tatooine."

Luke's eyes opened wide with wonder at this.

"Where does the Emperor live?"

"The Emperor lives in the Imperial palace, the biggest and most glorious building on the whole planet."

"Imperial?" Luke asked curiously.

"Yes," Vader replied wondering how to explain the Empire and the Rebellion to his son. "Remember the Jedi?"

"Yes," Luke replied with a touch of anger.

"Well I work for the Emperor and he controls the Empire. The Empire controls the whole galaxy, but there is a small group of Rebels who don't like the Empire and who want to bring back the Old Republic. Now the Old Republic is what the Jedi used to worked for."

"Those people want to bring back the Jedi?"

"Yes, and they fight the Empire thinking that they will be able to destroy me and the Emperor so that they can take control of the galaxy. But they, like the Jedi, are weak."

"Those are bad people!" Luke stated fiercely. "What are they called?"

"We call them Rebels, but they call themselves freedom fighters," Vader replied pleased at how Luke accepted his anger. "All the Rebels are part of the Rebel Alliance."

"The Rebel Alliance is bad," Luke declared.

"That's right, which is why I'm trying to destroy it."

"Good," Luke replied, then after a moment he added: "Can I help?"

"Maybe later, the Emperor will decide that," Vader replied.

Luke nodded and then yawned sleepily.

"There is one other thing," Vader said looking down at the teddy-bear in Luke's hand. "You'll have to get rid of your bear before we arrive on Coruscant."

"What?!" Luke exclaimed looking up at his father in surprise.

"Stuffed animals are for small, weak kids. The Emperor will not allow you to have it, and neither will I," Vader stated firmly as he felt that Luke was about to protest. "You can keep it until tomorrow, but then it will have to go, do you understand?"

Luke looked at him for a moment and then, reluctantly, he nodded. He knew from experience that it was no use arguing with his father, he had done that yesterday and he had been punished. His arm still hurt where his father had griped him.

Vader knew that Luke was thinking about what had happened yesterday and smiled, his son was a fast learner. This was good, it meant that he was less likely to anger the Emperor. For Vader knew that the Emperor might kill his son if he angered him too often.

"Time for bed," he said as he saw Luke yawn again.

Luke climbed out of his lap and went over to his cot without argument, his mind still thinking about the fact that he would have to give up his teddy-bear. Vader watched him for a moment before closing his pod for the night.

Luke lay on his bed hugging his teddy to his chest. He had had his teddy since before he could remember and he had only spent one night without it, that had been when Owen had taken it away as punishment. He felt like crying, but refrained from doing so since he knew that his father would disapprove of it.


Three days later,


Luke's eyes where wide open with stunned disbelieve as he observed Coruscant from the shuttle window. He had listened to his father's description of the planet, but it still hadn't prepared him for what he now saw. There were buildings everywhere, big buildings and small buildings, wide buildings and narrow buildings, there were so many buildings that Luke couldn't even see the ground. At this he tore himself away from the window to turn to his father who was watching him.

"Where is the ground?"

"It's all covered right here, but there are one or two places on the planet where you can see it, but that's all," Vader replied.

Luke nodded his head in amazement and then turned back to look out the window.

"That big building over there, the one with all the towers, is the Imperial palace," Vader informed his son as they approached the palace.

Luke stayed by the window until the landing and even then he was reluctant to leave it, for he had a spectacular view.

"Come Luke," Vader urged impatiently. "The Emperor is expecting us and he doesn't like to be kept waiting."

At this Luke got off the seat and followed his father off the shuttle. Once outside the shuttle he stopped momentarily to look up at the tall towers of the palace, but then ran after his father who had kept going. He took his father's hand as he reached his side and then he tried to look in every direction at once as he was lead into the palace.


* * *


Sitting in his throne in the throne room Emperor Palpatine felt Vader and Luke approach as he looked out the window. From here he had a spectacular view of the best part of Coruscant. He smiled to himself every time he looked out it, for it was his, it was all his. Every person and building on the planet was his, not to mention most of the whole galaxy.

But he pushed those thoughts from his mind as Vader approached. Lord Vader claimed that young Skywalker was strong with the Force, but he would decide that for himself. For although he cherished the thought of another Force strong servant he had to be sure that young Skywalker would be worth the time and effort it would take to train him.

He turned his throne around and used the Force to brush against young Skywalker's mind. There was indeed potential there and he found that Vader had already started training the boy, for there were traces of anger that were only left behind by the dark side.

Then the elevator door opened and they were there.

Luke followed his father out of the elevator and into the throne room. He shivered slightly as he felt something cold and powerful radiating from the top of the stairs. He looked up at his father who just ignored him and started up the stairs. Luke hesitated for a moment, scared, but then he followed his father up the stairs. Once at the top he saw a man dressed in black robes sitting on the throne. He stepped forward and stopped next to his father, unsure of what to do but knowing better then to ask questions. Instead he just looked at whom he assumed was the Emperor and his master.

Palpatine eyed the boy for a moment before invading his mind. He found that Luke was both scared and interested in him. Scared of what he might do, but interested in what he had to teach him, for his father had told him that the Emperor would continue his training, which he wanted more then anything he had ever wanted before.

Palpatine smiled at this, this was the perfect combination for the dark side, fear and lust. He knew that the anger and hate would come later, they always did as they helped the individual quench his lust.

Vader stood still as his master invaded his son's mind and rummaged around. He knew that his master had seen that he had already begun his son's training and wondered whether he would be punished or not. He remained unmoving even as Palpatine dug into the back of Luke's mind, from there he could instantly kill Luke if he wanted to.

Palpatine observed Vader as he dug back into Luke's mind, just to make sure that Vader still excepted his every decision, even if it meant the death of his son. When Vader didn't react he left the boy's mind, pleased with what he had found. Young Skywalker was indeed strong with the Force, almost as strong as Vader. At this he made his decision, he would train the boy as another Sith Lord.

"Tell me, young Skywalker," he began looking down at the boy, "what has your father told you about the Jedi?"

"That they're bad and weak," Luke replied with a touch of anger as he remembered what they had done to his father.

"Good," Palpatine replied. "Why are they weak?"

"Because they use the light side," Luke replied obediently, wondering where this was going.

Vader knew as soon as the Emperor started asking questions that he was going to keep Luke alive to train him. His thoughts were confirmed by the Emperor's next words:

"That's right, my young apprentice."

At this Luke looked up, his eyes sparkling with delight and lust as he knew that this meant that the Emperor would teach him more about the Force. Palpatine laughed out loud at Luke's reaction, the boy would be easily persuaded to completely accept the dark side.

Vader looked down at his son and smiled. He would be very powerful someday, and unafraid to use his power for any reason.


Eighteen years later,


Palpatine sat in his throne facing the window as his mind raced. The time had finally come for young Skywalker to take his place at his father's side as Lord Skywalker. The boy had proven to be both a fast and talented student, especially when it came to using his lightsaber. A skill he had obviously inherited from his father, along with his excellent piloting skills.

Luke had completely finished his training at the age of fourteen, but it had been impossible for him to take his place then for he had been far too young. So instead he been a kind of Hand, doing anything his master had needed, whether it had been sabotage, secretly rooting out Rebel spies, or an assassination that had to be done without anyone being able to trace it back to the Empire. This last kept a constant fear among the people, for although they suspected that the Empire was behind it, they couldn't be sure.

But now the time had come for Luke to publicly appear as a Lord, responsible only to him and his father. He had timed it so that young Skywalker's appearance would happen simultaneous to the disbanding of the Senate and with the appearance of the Death Star. All three events would clearly show that he would have no more of the stupid, insignificant Rebellion.

He then turned his throne around as Lord Vader and young Skywalker entered the room. They came up the stairs and stood before their mutual master, father and son, both clad in black, both wearing a lightsaber at their belt, and both his willing, devoted servants. Palpatine eyed them both for a moment before speaking:

"Lord Skywalker, you will now join your father and destroy the Rebel Alliance."

Luke's head came up an inch at the title and his eyes sparkled. He then stepped forward, and knowing exactly what was expected of him, he knelt before his master accepting his master's decision. Palpatine smiled as he looked down at the new Lord, it had taken time and effort to train young Skywalker and to mentor him into manhood, but he knew now, as Lord Skywalker knelt before him, that it had all been worth it.

And Vader standing at the top of the stairs smiled. He had a brief flash back of the scared two year old boy he had found huddled on his bed, but dismissed the thought as he looked at his son kneeling before the Emperor. And as he observed his son he suddenly realized how much Luke had become like him, he was truly his father's son.



The End

November 1998