The interior design of this battle station was one of the coldest and bleak the galaxy had ever seen. But it worked. Low, gloomy lighting, minimal panelling, dark coloring; It brought hopelessness into the enemies' hearts and it brought sternness into the loyalists. It showed that the Empire was solid, firm and thorough and had no time for individualism or uniqueness. It held strong because all the feet, labor and hearts that powered it were one. A giant machine of power. Tarkin walked down the halls, his boots clapping loudly on the black floors, admiring this idea he fathomed in his head. The Death Star was the ultimate symbol for perfect power. And it was at his control. How he loved this control.
"Sir!" A commander approached him, breaking him out of his thoughts. "We've hunted around this entire area and even checked station E74 three times. We only found two cargo ships that haven't been flown for almost a decade docked there. No sign of Vader's TIE."
"And you are absolutely sure they aren't on either of those ships." He asked through gnarled teeth. He was slightly irritated to be reminded of their lack of progress on the hunt.
"Sir, we checked those vessels thoroughly and didn't find him anywhere. It would be very difficult for a man his size to hide out in any of those ships' compartments."
"Are you giving me attitude, Commander?"
"Sir, no sir. I'm merely stating the facts, they are very small cargo ships."
The Grand Moff leered, but let it pass. He was too concentrated on finding Darth Vader and bringing an end to that oversized robotic man. "Well don't just stand there now, continue your search!"
The commander quickly saluted, turned on his heels and sped off. Tarkin turned back to the window, worrying on his finger with his front teeth. Lord Vader had always been a mysterious one, full of tricks. But a vanishing act? Impossible… His old religious connections with the Force couldn't possibly give him such a power. He can't stay hiding for long. They would find him. But soon enough? Fast enough to meet the expectations of the-
The commlink in his ear buzzed as he was hailed an alert. The old man clenched his jaw as his stomach told him he had an idea who it was by how quickly it turned over.
"Why haven't you found him yet?"
"My Lord, we are searching. I have doubled the search now and we're making sure he doesn't slip passed us."
There was a pause and to the Grand Moff's surprise, a soft cackle. "Lord Vader has the Force on his side. Don't let your guard down or it will be the end of you, Tarkin."
"I understand, my Lord."
Tarkin raised an eyebrow. There was a pause.
"He will find his way to me. I sense it… Continue your search, Grand Moff. But also be prepared for a visitor to this battle station very soon."
Tarkin didn't like the sound of the Emperor's certainty. But he had to obey his orders. The only orders above his rank. Hopefully not for long…
The metal cocoon closed around him and the loud hiss of oxygen flowed out from below. He closed his eyes, and tipped his masked face up towards the metal claw reaching for him. It gripped down and released the seal, and he was free to breath through his mouth. He inhaled. A smile almost appeared on his face.
'Yes, my apprentice.'
'The troopers are getting awfully close. We can't hide the fact that the hyperbaric chamber is on. If they come too close, they'll discover us here.'
'Keep a watch, Raven. If they do get too close, take them out. But be swift, silent and careful.'
Her mind wandered away from his as she continued to patrol the entrance to his lair in the shadows. He knew she would keep him safe.
Interest. Was this how it felt to trust again?
He felt a cold and bitter feeling wash over him and he quickly bathed himself back into his concentration with the Force and forgot the thought.
The machine's around him finished a scan of his suits condition and immediately began to work its programming to repair the damages. He rested his arm out for the machines to begin to replace his missing hand. Then another began to tweak at his back, replacing the filter and soldering the metal plate back in proper place. His one good fist clenched and he grinned to himself. He felt his strength returning. He felt confident again. But she didn't…
Raven… The young girl needed to hold together with him, or the Emperor would tear them both apart… He breathed in deeply, contemplating. Perhaps she needed one extra push…
Her eyes batted in the dark, as she held still and low in a corner. She listened. She watched. There hasn't been any sighs of the Storm Troopers yet… And last thing she wanted was to get in any entanglements with them. But if she had to pull an assassination to keep their presence secret, she would, no matter how much it still bothered her.
She closed her eyes; they were useless to her in this darkness. She used the Force to travel through the halls around this small station, feeling and looking. Two troopers were scanning through their cargo ship again, for the fourth time now. They couldn't tell it had docked here an hour ago… not after hacking out the crew log and replacing it with a fake one. The engines also had enough time to cool down. Her presence slinked through more halls… one trooper, two troopers… three troopers… four troopers… There were only six of them left. And they were mostly occupying the front of the station. They had given up on the back part, where she and her master stayed. Just stay up there… For now… Her mind travelled over to the other docking stations. Another abandoned cargo ship… and two Lambda shuttles. All the troopers must have arrived on those.
'Raven…' The deep voice broke her concentration and she was kneeling in the dark again.
'Yes, master.' She replied through the Force. She felt the invisible threads of their thoughts weaving together as they communicated through the white, rippling waves.
'Come back to the hyperbaric chamber room.'
She hesitated and stood up. 'Is… everything alright?'
'Are you done being repaired?'
'Then wot is it?'
She heard or felt no reply. But his presence was still lingering with her. She frowned slightly, but turned and headed back to her master's current domain.
"Master?" She spoke aloud now as she entered the room.
The cocoon shape of his chamber was wide open and the excess of the strong oxygen was leaking out into the room in a light vapor. Vader remained seated in the chair in the center of the cocoon, facing her. She could hear his energized breathing. With the new filter in his respirator, he sounded fuller and powerful again. She couldn't help but smirk a bit from this overwhelming presence. It… still didn't fail to impress her.
"Wot's wrong?" She asked.
"There is nothing wrong with me. But there is with you…"
Her eyebrows narrowed together. "I don't understand."
"I sense anxiety in you, young apprentice."
Raven shifted weight on her feet, bitting down on her lower lip. "Yes, I feel anxious. A little scared too."
Vader fell silent now, still staring into her deeply.
"Master, there's a good chance we are about to face Death. At any moment now. Is it not normal for me to be fearful?"
"It is quite normal."
Raven chewed a bit harder on her lip. "Then I don't understand why you're bringing this up, Master…"
"I can't have you this tense… you need to be confident when we go into battle."
"Then wot are you suggest-"
He had begun to stand and she immediately felt the clutches of the Force upon her. It was sudden, right between her legs, and it held her tightly but gently. "Uh-" She let out a quick gasp, as she felt her legs grow weak under its influence. Vader slowly began to walk towards the small girl and she began to shake slightly as the sensation of the Force fed her strong waves of overwhelming pleasure. It was all in the mind… but it felt real… and quite exhilarating.
He stood in front of her now. He still did not touch her physically, only manipulated the Force around his body and hers to caress her and sooth her nerves. Her back arched, her kneels left the floor and her neck tipped back. Vader reached with a gloved hand, slipping his thumb into her open mouth and gripping her jawline in his grasp. He kept her face towards him as his energy slipped in and out and around her body.
'Master!' Her mind screamed.
'Don't resist me, Raven. Let the Force consume you.'
Let the Dark Side take you in its hold.
A faint vapor form began to peel away from his mask. It hovered inches away from her face and then plunged itself into her. She gasped again, the form feeling like flesh. A mouth brushed roughly against hers, fighting her lips widely open. Her mouth became wet… she felt a tongue caress her own. Her body began to twitch as she could not hold in several other moans of pleasure. The exhilaration was building and it felt like millions of electrical energy was exploding inside her. A huge, idiotic grin crossed her face, and her red eyes fought to stay open and to gaze into those tented lens on the masked face. Her mind became enveloped in a bubble of a pure euphoric dosage of dopamine. Vader watched, pleased greatly as he felt the incredible amounts of emotion build off of Raven. He continued to hold her, as he fed and energized her… satisfying her lustful cravings. He made love to her through the power of the Force alone.
The last trooper boarded the second Lambda shuttle in the docking bay. The first one had already taken off. The gloved fingers began to punch a code to close the ship's doors when a huge, shadowy figure moved passed and spooked him. "Who's there?!" He cried. In response, a bright red light hummed loudly, and sliced his head clean off. Two other troopers ran to the back of the ship to investigate the commotion, only to find their fate the same as their comrade. One by one, Vader took out the Troopers aboard this Lambda quickly before any of them could alert to the Death Star or the other shuttle.
Finally, all fell still inside, and Vader retracted his weapon.
'All is clear, my apprentice.'
'Okay.' She responded. She had crawled aboard their cargo ship and whistled loudly in a very specific pattern of notes. A small compartment burst open in response and Mech emerged through the tightly compacted space, his body readjusting and refitting back to normal shape.
"Good boy." Raven said, smiling. "Come now, we're taking a new ship."
The entrance way reopened with harsh force, and Raven and Mech stepped aboard the Lambda. Raven joined her master in the cockpit, who had already seated himself in the pill's chair and began to activate the engines and controls. Raven pulled the copilot's limp body aside and sat beside him.
"Now we follow aboard to the Death Star."
Before they could take off, the com link was hailed an alert. Vader picked up the link without hesitation.
"Lambda T4A891, report status."
Raven looked to her master, watching to see his respond. He said nothing, but merely took a hand and waved it slowly over the com link. There was silence for a few seconds and the com link turned off on their end.
"Weak minded fool…" He chuckled to himself.
The ship hovered its way out of the docking bay and followed the path its companion vessel took towards the giant battle station.
"Do we plan to fight our way through this? You know the Empire is going to expect troopers to exit off this ship once it docks."
Vader turned and took his gaze upon the mechanical hound. For the first time, he seemed to acknowledge Mech's presence. "We need your droid to distract them for us."
Raven raised and eyebrow as she and the hound turned to look at one another.
"it is capable of causing mass destruction, is it not?"
"Oh, very much so." Raven replied, proudly.
"Good. We'll need it to start an massive attack once we board the Death Star. Once the battle station has its full attention on your droid, we can board off and make our way to the Emperor."
"Wait… he's aboard the Death Star?"
"Yes. I have sensed him."
Raven worried her lip with her front teeth. "Then does that mean…"
'Yes, he senses me too. He knows we are coming.'
'Then why hasn't he alerted the rest of the battle station already?'
'He has plans for us.'
Raven swallowed the lump in her throat. Vader turned to her now. 'Do not worry, he isn't expecting what we have in store for him. He has no idea how strong you have become. We can take him off guard.'
'I trust your judgement.' She replied.
He looked at her hard before he turned back to steer the ship forward. 'Thank you. Your trust will not be in vain.'