Just a short missing scene from ANH, set after the film. —revised october 2010.


In Vino Veritas
by Mathematica


"Luke Skywalker …" That is all he says, his hazel eyes boring into Luke's own. "Any relation to Anakin?"

"Yes." Naïve, idealistic Luke says proudly, infusing the words with the pride that only an orphan can. "My father."

"Didn't know Jedi were allowed to enjoy the finer pleasures in life."

He seizes desperately on the statement, like a starving child. "Did you know my father?"

"Did I know your father?" He takes a gulp of the drink, safe in his ignorance. "Kid, it was impossible not to know your father. The whole krething galaxy knew your father! He was everything we wanted to be—Jedi Knight, brilliant pilot, the Hero With No Fear. You name it, he was it." (He really hadn't seen himself as the hero-worshipping type, but his own memories are surprising him.)

"Really?"

"Really."

"I thought winning a podrace was impossible."

"He defined impossible, kid." The words aren't forced, aren't rehearsed, and Luke wonders if, underneath that mercenary exterior, Han once believed too. "Great pilot, that Skywalker ... he was Red Five too, y'know."

"Really?"

"Yeah. Everyone knew that." His mouth keeps moving of its own accord. "Him and Kenobi. Two great Jedi Knights. The Hero With No Fear and the Negotiator. Everyone followed them, y'know, wanted to grow up to be them, some day. They'd always pretend in the streets, kids, running around like they really could save the world. Which are you, then, Kenobi or Skywalker?" He laughs bitterly. "Hell, I don't know. Maybe some of them could have saved the world some day. But they're all dead now, those kids. All of them. The Empire took care of that."

A pause.

"Did you ever meet him?"

Another laugh, more uncertain this time. "Me?"

A searching look, a soft sigh. It makes him feel uncomfortable, Skywalker's eyes looking out at him from that kid's face.

He relents, remembers severe black robes, a scarred face, an intense look burning in his eyes. A hard man, they would whisper, pointing to his black glove. Hard of heart, too. And he had been afraid of this man, godlike, powerful, fearful—

"What was he like?"

—but how do you tell that to his son, who lost everything?

"He was a good man, kid." He settles on at last, pensively swirling the last of his drink around his glass. "A real hero. Looked like you too, y'know. His eyes …" He drains the glass. "They were yours, kid. You took those too."

The revellers are oddly silent, far away. "What happened to him?"

The answer is as short as Skywalker's life had been. "Died. Vader polished him off, I guess."

"I thought so." (He doesn't want to believe old Ben, but he does, and that just makes his task all the more impossible.) "What else do you know?"

Something burns his throat, almost like the drink. "Nothing, kid." He mutters, trying to convince himself. "Nothing."

If the kid wants stories of a brave commander, of a true hero, of the man that flew into battle, lightsabre flashing, defending the weak and protecting the Republic, then that is fine. He can have those, too. But if he truly wants to know about his father, about the brave, dark man who lost everything, then there is nothing he can do. The Jedi are gone. Kenobi is dead. The era is over. There is nobody left to ask.