Touring the forest moon. Getting back to nature. Singing around the bonfire.
Wondering whither Luke Skywalker. Musings on my reign to come.
I have spent the day touring our facilities on the Sanctuary Moon from which we emit the invisible energy-condom that protects the still incomplete Death Star orbiting above. This world is an explosion of life, every inch teeming with creeping vines and scurrying insects and rustling leaves. Our tour ended up at the stormtrooper garrison where General Veers was hosting a barbecue.
"Have you tried one of these Ewoks, m'lord?" asked Admiral Piett, offering me a crisp kebab. "Delectable!"
Veers himself was surrounded by a cadre of identical troopers holding their helmets in one hand and their drinks in the other. "Lord Vader!" Veers greeted me. "I'm so glad you could join us. Did somebody get you an Ewok?"
"I'm fine, just fine," I assured him. "Your forces seem to be in excellent shape, General."
"Thank you, my Lord," he smiled. "Have you met Lieutenant Twenty-Six? He's responsible for the new drills we've been using to tighten up the scout platoons."
"How do you do?" I said, shaking the cloned trooper's hand briefly. He nodded respectfully. To Veers I quipped, "How do you tell them apart?"
Everyone had a good laugh over that.
While the men kibbitzed I took a stroll through the nearby glen. I cannot remember the smell of the world anymore, but with my boots stepping through the bracken underbrush and with the dappled sunlight playing over my helmet I can almost fathom was it was like to know scent.
Twigs snapped and I paused. Animals were about -- animals with minds. When I closed my eyes I could discern their wispy spirits sparkling behind the glow of the thoughtless canopy. They had smelled the meat of their kin and it set their hearts racing, dreaming of revenge. But they scampered before my shadow. I moved on, pushing through the bush.
I came to a rise overlooking a shallow ravine in which was situated the auxiliary entrance to the shield generator bunker. I considered: why a back door?
When I returned to the clearing I asked General Veers about it. "The Emperor specified it," he told me. "As you can see, my Lord, the auxiliary entrance lies just to the west of that rocky cache. His Excellency has commanded me to station a legion of walkers behind the ridge at all times..."
"Go on, General."
"Loath as I am to speculate, my Lord, I can only assume the Emperor is baiting a trap for rebel spies."
The General may be on to something, for there is movement in the Force. Even now I sense a restlessness in the galaxy, a yearning of hyperspace to eject matters on our very threshold. I meditated on this growing disturbance as the men stuck a fresh Ewok on the spit and lowered it over the fire.
"Doesn't that smell great?" whistled Lieutenant 26.
The sun set and the party became more boisterous. Several of the men took turns leading the others in rounds of song. I declined when asked, but made a special request for the classic popular anthem Burn, Rebel, Burn which they took up with enthusiasm. In listening to the lyric carefully I developed a theory that the song may in fact be ironic, but I am a bad judge of such things: from my point of view most popular music these days seems to be a joke on its audience.
"Where's Moff Jerjerrod?" I asked.
"Back on the Death Star crying because no one invited him," chuckled Admiral Piett, his arm around his new yeoman.
"Does nobody like that guy?"
General Veers shook his head emphatically and everybody laughed. I knew where they were coming from. The man is annoying. If the Emperor himself had not forbidden me from crushing Jerjerrod's trachea with my mind I can assure you today's barbecue would also have been a merry wake.
The air was alive with the chirping of insects.
I looked upon the bonfire blazing into the forest night and felt a shiver run down my spine and into my cybernetics, though I know not why...
Now I have returned to the Death Star to finalize preparations for arrival tomorrow of my master Darth Sidious. I know he blinds me to his designs in the affairs that the Force tells me are threatening to unfurl here at Endor, and it makes me feel so very alone. Can it be that yet another man who has pretended at being a father forsakes me?
I am too willing to stand in another man's shadow, to win his approval.
Tomorrow I shall pierce his fog with my focused vision when he comes here. I shall know his mind and yet mine will remain a placid pond to him, the mirror surface giving no hint of what eddies churn within.
Too long have I been the learner. I must now prepare myself for my future, when I am the Dark Master. I cannot afford to be negative -- I have to know Luke will turn. He will come to study the Sith way from me. It is the only interpretation of the prophecy that makes sense!
Though I have devotedly worked for his love and bowed to his reign, I admit to you I will smile when Palpatine dies. My whole life I have waited to stop being somebody's padawan.
I am ready for bed. I have to stop journaling. Big day tomorrow. And yet...I sense something -- a perturbance in the Force I have not felt since...
Deep in space, I feel the strings of the Force grow taut. The Emperor is not the only gifted one traveling to this moon. There is another. Skywalker!
They come together to clash, and thereby make me Emperor.
Soon this will be Darth Vader's galaxy, and the people will willingly raise statues of my gargoyle face in celebration of an era of stability and order like no other the worlds have ever known.
In anticipation of portraiture, I applied a fair gob of Boba Fett's new skin cream before I clapped off the light and lay down to sleep, the air whistling soothingly through the ventilators of my hyperbaric chamber.