When he had collapsed in the forests of (ewok plannet), the thought of dying there, so far away from any empire vehicle or base, hung on every part of him. As he fell unconscious, in the blur of his vision, a figure stood not too far off, before his eyes closed.
-Chapter 1: The Intermission-
Darth Vader jolted awake, sitting up immediately, looking around. He looked around, sitting in a dome-shaped room, hooked up to a charger for his respiratory system. Vader ripped the cords out, catching his breath from the sudden action, before standing up and looking around. There were arch ways on either side of the room, small circular windows, but despite how small it seemed, it was spacious enough for a tall man like himself.
A women came in from the doorway to his left, looking at him, before offering him a plate of- some type of meat- and some type of drink. "Do you know who I am?" Vader demanded, and she shook her head of black dreadlocks. Twigs and flowers were weaved into her locks, as were small trinkets, "Were you the one who dragged me here? Is this your home?" She held up one finger, nodded, held up another finger, and nodded again, answering both questions.
Her skin was dark, and the only light colored things on her body, were the pastel colors of the tribal markings on her body. She didn't wear any shoes, and her nails were long, untrimmed. Instead of clothes, she wore several strings and necklaces of wooden beads and small bones.6 or 7 necklaces that hung down, covering her breasts mostly. For a skirt, she had 8 or 9, maybe more, loose strings of bones and beads encircles her hips. Her navel had a sharp bone through the skin.
The woman grabbed Vader's hand and pulled him out of the house, into the forest that he collapsed in, before he snatched the hand back. She pointed to a grey building with a landing pad that had his space ship on it. She had brought him back to the base. When he Vader turned back, it was all gone.
The small hut he'd woken up in, was there, but it was smaller than it had been. The woman, too, had vanished. He investigated the hut, and found no trace of anything, aside from the charger he'd been hooked up too. Vader shrugged it off and returned to the base, as if nothing happened.
"Did you hear about the Druid?" He over heard a conversation between a few storm troopers on guard. "a few of the guys have walked into a certain area of the forest, and collapse. When they wake up, there's a beautiful, mute, human woods woman, who helps them. She points them in the direction of where they came from when she leads them out, and when they turn around, she and the building they wake up in, are completely gone." Vader kept it to himself that the hut hadn't vanished, but the woman had.
"What s on your mind, my apprentice?" His master asked him over a transmission of a report, and Darth Vader left his mind, looking at his Master.
"My master, I collapsed in the forest earlier today and encountered a woman that the troopers have been mentioning. She appears as quickly as she disappears, My Master. I take an interest in this person." Darth Vader admitted, his Master nodding slightly,
"Indeed, this woman sounds interesting. Find her and bring her to me." His master ordered, before the transmission was ended.
~O~ Later ~O~
The woman was in one of the 4 rooms of the hut that went underground, cleaning various clay dishes in a large basin of water. As she dried one of the bowls off with a thin cloth, the door to her home was broken down, and she whipped around. White and black intruders stormed into her home and pointed strange, black weapons at her, as they surrounded the woman in a semi-circle, while she stood from her kneeling position. "Put your hands where we can see them and comply." They instructed.
She narrowed her eyes, gripping the bowl, before throwing it at one of the storm troopers, catching them off guard. They shot at her, shattering other clay dishes around her, and she fought back by smashing the clayware over their heads, backs, and legs. It was a valiant effort of fighting back, but a good majority of the intruders remained standing and dog piled on top of her as she growled and hissed with feral anger.
Eventually, she was tied up like a mummy, gagged, and carried back to the closest base where Darth Vader met the 'collecting party' at the door of his ship. The clone troopers untied her and shoved her into a glass holding cell in the ship, locking her in. She pounded on the glass angrily, trying to claw at the glass, before Vader stood in front of the cylindrical container in the corner. "My Master desires to meet you. If you cooperate, you won't be harmed." Vader assured her, but she breathed on the glass and wrote 'NO' in the mist of her breath. "You cannot refuse, you're already in my ship."
She tried to break the glass by ramming into it with her shoulder, but when that failed to do anything, she threw herself against it, and finally, began to head butt it. "I command you to stop!" Vader commanded, but even as she began to bleed, she kept trying. He reach over and pressed a button, a green vapor began to pour into the chamber she was in, until he removed his hand from the button. "That should make you compliant." She coughed violently, inhaling the gas, but tried to pound on the glass. Vader watched with amusement, as she slowly succumbed to the gas, and collapsed to the bottom of the container.
Vader sat across from the container, the woman watched him stoically, "Don't make me repeat this action, Druid." He warned her, the woman sitting up, her necklaces swaying, and he got up, looking for something. He grabbed a blanket and opened the container, covering her with it, before closing the container again after adding a little more gas. She investigated the blanket suspiciously, before lying it on top of her. The woman didn't seem to like the blanket very much. It was amusing to him, as they warped at light speed to their destination.
When they landed in the docking bay, a group of storm troopers carried the cylinder out, and the woman panicked as they carried it out on its side. She kicked the bottom and pushed the top, struggling around in the cylinder. Darth Vader walked behind them, watching, as the woman jerked and writhed around in the container. "Calm yourself." Vader said, but she only marginally calmed down. The Emperor, met them in the docking bay.
"Is this the woman?" He questioned Vader, the storm troopers setting the container down, the woman hitting her back on the glass behind her, as Darth Vader knelt to his master.
"Yes, my Master. It took some time too-" The Emperor opened the container, and Vader looked over. "My master?" The Emperor offered his hand to the woman, who stared at his hand while she stepped out. "She killed a good portion of my men, Master."
"Do not challenge me, my apprentice." The Emperor said, as the woman walked around slightly crouched, taking in the new surroundings. Then, she vanished. "So she does disappear from the eye." The troopers looked around, "You may stand." Vader stood- before he was pushed into the container and it locked, the woman reappearing, staring at him from the outside. The Emperor laughed, "You've been bested, I see. What is your name, girl?" He asked her and she looked at him emotionlessly. "Do you speak?" She shook her head from side to side, "Can you write?" She nodded, "Clean her up and find out what type of symbols those are." She watched him, "Go on and let him out so he can do his job, please." She blinked, before opening the container to let Vader out, "Bring her to me when you're done, Vader." Vader bowed, and she stood there, looking at him.
The Emperor left, before he was pushed back into the container and locked in, "Take her to the sterilizing room and scrub her until her skin is raw. When you're done, give her something covering to wear." Darth Vader ordered, and the group of storm troopers picked up the container and carried her away, Vader following them. He watched as the storm troopers tried to calm her down enough to bathe her, from outside, of course.
She yelled, growled, kicking the female storm troopers away as they ripped the necklaces, and sprayed her with pressurized water. The vibrant colors of the tattoos she wore, swirled down the drain in murky water, as she hugged herself. Twigs and destroyed flowers fell to the floor, the remains of the necklaces around her feet, and bones rested on the tile of the room. A few of the storm troopers restrained her, as others untied her thick dread locks, massaging in shampoo and a substantial amount of conditioner. Vader walked down the hall, as she was brought into another room. He watched, arms crossed, as a group of un-uniformed storm trooper girls, tended to the Woman now.
They brushed and combed her hair as she stubbornly tried to get back to the other room, wailing, as the troopers from the room before, collected the beads and bones. The Woman sobbed, even as the other women trimmed and clipped her nails to an acceptable length. Her nails were cleaned, her feet scrubbed to perfection, her toe nails trimmed as well. The other girls cut her hair and did other minor things, before curtains were drawn over the window Vader stood in front of. After a while, a door was opened, and one of the girls who helped clean up the Woman, stepped out. "Lord Vader, if you wish, you may speak with the Woman now. Since she can't talk, we've given her a pad of paper to 'speak' with." Vader entered the room, and the woman sat there, waiting.
"You are to come with me, let's go." Darth Vader said bluntly, and she shook her
head. "Do not defy me, girl. My Master wishes to see you and you will see him. Now come." She wrote something down on her pad of paper, before giving it to Vader. She had written 'I wish to be returned to my home planet. This place of cold walls confuses me. I wish to be taken home.'. "Your placement will be decided based by my Master, girl. If you wish to return home, then I will take you afterwards." She took the pad back and wrote something down, before standing up, shoving the pad into his hands, and left the room in a loose dress. 'My name is Kah' Ah Ti.' She had written down. Vader tossed the pad back to one of the girls, and grabbed her arm.
She whipped around to hit him, and he grabbed her other arm, "You will stay by my side until my Master says otherwise. Do I make myself clear?" She struggled to take her limbs back, and stopped when he tightened his grip, "I asked you a question and you'd best answer me; Do You Understand Me?" She nodded slightly, and released her. "That wasn't so hard, now, was it?" She spit on him and ran off, before he pulled her back to him, "You will not escape me." He told her, grabbing her hand, and pulling her behind him. Vader entered and elevator, the doors almost closing on her, before he pulled her over.
Kah' Ah Ti looked back and touched the closed door, before she yipped when the elevator began to move. She grabbed onto the Sith, tightly gripping his cloak as she hid behind him, Vader looking back at her. "Have you lived in that forest your whole life?" He questioned, and she nodded, "Then you'd better adapt quickly." She didn't respond. "Release my cloak." He ordered, and she loosened her grip, before he ripped it completely form her hands, pointing to the empty floor to his left, "Stand beside me and stay still until we stop." He commanded and she silently stood next to him.
Vader looked down at her, never before noticing the sunset orange of her eyes. Her skin was still dark, but more of a rich milk chocolate color than anything else. Even her hair seemed revived, going down to her mid-back in a straight waterfall. Her eyes didn't match her at all… she looked up at him. Her irises were yellow and sunset orange, blended smoothly, silver specked here and there. Vader stood idly, wondering about these, as she toyed with his chest panel. He brushes her curious hands away, "I am not a toy. Do not play with me like so-" She shoved him away from her, kicked his legs from under him, and Vader fell to the ground. He grabbed her arm and pulled her down with him, and she fell on top of him, "You-!"
The Woman ignored him and straddled his waist, picking up his chest panel, investigating it. Vader stood up, pushing her against the other side of the cramped elevator to get up.
"You test my patience, girl!" Vader grunted and she grabbed his cloak, investigating this too, before wrapping it around her neck like some type of shawl. Once more, he took it back, but this time he lifted her off the ground by an unseen hand around her throat, choking her. The elevator came to a stop and opened to their destined floor before she was dropped.
"That's no way to treat her, Vader." The emperor told him, as she gasped for air. When she collected herself, she got to her feet and tugged at the loose dress she wore, as Vader knelt before his Master. She looked around, stepping out of the elevator. The doors closed on her dress and she yelped as it went down, ripping the cloth as she growled defensively at the odd and new machine. Her hair covered mostly everything that needed to be covered, as one of the Emperor's personal guards wrapped her up in their cloak, going without for the sake of gentlemen ship that Vader seemed to lack. "Poor thing. Come closer, Druid." She went over to him and stood in front of him, the cloak loosely covering her, "You understand me, right?" She frowned but nodded a little, "Do you like Vader?" She looked over at Vader, before the Emperor, and shook her head from side to side. His Master laughed, "such an honest girl. Can you speak your name?"
"Kah…Ah Ti." She said hesitantly, her words shaky and almost unable to be decoded. "K…ah Ah Ti." She repeated, her words much more confident and clearer.
"I see. Do you think you can tolerate helping Vader over there?" She looked back at him, then unsurely back at the Emperor. "He could use some help getting to know girls." She shook her head, her black hair whipping around as she did.
"Kah Ah Ti.. G…Go…Ho-home!" She exclaimed and the Emperor sighed.
"That's too bad you don't want to help him and you'd rather go home. He sure could use your help." The emperor said and she hesitated, looking down unsurely, "I could have even helped you. Maybe some new necklaces or beads like what you were wearing?" She looked around for something, "Are you looking for something to write with? My friends here have a pad of paper and a pen." she nodded and when she received them, she wrote something down. 'I will not be bribed into helping someone whose gone so far as to take me from my home. Please return me.' "Now, that seems to be a shame. You probably just need time to think about it. Vader, take her to a holding cell and don't be rough with her."
"Yes my master." Vader said, a storm trooper going over and she whipped around, hissing defensively before jumping on it and snapping his neck. She killed a few other clones before Vader grabbed her arm,
"Wait, Vader, she's just scared." Vader stopped as Kah Ah Ti growled around her defensively, ready for another fight. Kah Ah Ti calmed down, and scribbled something on her pad, showing it to the Emperor. 'My Tattoos that you washed away, were symbols that were dear to me. If I could ask for anything as your captive, then it would be to have the paints necessary to revive the tattoos on my skin.' "Hm…It's a deal. Take her away."
Vader shoved her into a cold, unforgiving cell of metal with a metal slab for a bed. "Don't make a fuss." He instructed and the door shut. Kah Ah Ti attacked the door, until she grew tired and sat dejectedly on the metal bench.