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Marie Wadsworth

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SWFF: Last of the Jedi Episode 1
By Marie Wadsworth
Wednesday, August 08, 2007

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Luke Skywalker is disturbed by a vision.

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...

With a jolt he sat straight up in his bed. He was panting, and his body was drenched in sweat.

Darkness whirled around him as Luke Skywalker tried to get his barrings only to discover he was still in his assigned private room in the Rebel hospital on Sullust. Taking a deep breath, he calmed himself.

It was only a dream.
No, he thought as he stretched to touch the lightsaber lying on the nightstand next to his bed. He knew better than that.

As his black-gloved hand gripped the familiar metal hilt of his weapon his experiences from the previous night were once again awakened within him.

As his black-gloved hand gripped the familiar metal hilt of his weapon his experiences from the previous night were once again awakened within him.

Yesterday he'd had his final confrontation with his father, Darth Vader, and his Emperor aboard the Death Star. This was his final test before becoming a Jedi, and he'd barely escaped alive.

His memories about what happened during that confrontation in the Emperor's throne room were a little hazy. He remembered rushing at his father in furied frenzy after Vader had ominiously suggested he might convert his daughter and Luke's sister, Leia, to the Dark Side if the Dark Lord failed in his attempts to get his son to join the Dark Side.

He'd driven his father to his knees at the edge of the bridge in the anteroom. As the Dark Lord raised his blade to block yet another onslaught, he'd slashed Vader's right hand off at tje wrist.

He recalled staring at his father's twitching, severed, mechanical hand and realized how much he'd become like his father. Trembling he stood above Vader, the point of his glowing blade at the Dark Lord's throat. He had every intention on killing this thing of Darkness for once and all, the thing that was once his father, the thing that was him.

At that moment, the Emperor walked down the steps into the anteroom, chuckling and clapping his hands in pleased agitation. "Good! Kill him! Your hate has made you powerful! Now, fullfill your destiny and take your father's place at my side!"

In that moment of truth, Luke realized it was Darkness he hated. Not his father and not even the Emperor, but it was the Darkness in them and himself. The only way to destroy Darkness was to renounce it.

He flung his weapon aside. "You've failed, Your Highness, I'm a Jedi like my father before me."

The Emperor's glee turned to sullen rage. "So be it, Jedi. If you will not turn, you will be destroyed."

The Emperor stretched out his hands, launching bursts of lightning bolts at him. He had never seen such power unleashed before and wondered where it came from. He felt the power of the Dark Side when the charged particles touched his skin.

He raised his gloved right hand, deflecting the initial assault, but the Emperor's lightning was too powerful. The charged currents kept coming; he fell backwards and almost tumbled into the Death Star's exhaust shaft.

Another wave of energy crashed over him. His knees buckled and he crumbled on the floor.
The Emperor stood over him, electric energy streaming endlessly from his finger tips. Current coursed through him, he writhed in agony.

"You're feeble Jedi skills are no match for the power of the Dark Side," the Emperor cackled. "You'll pay the price for your lack of vision."
It was terrible. His body jerked with each jolt. His hands flailing, as he tried to keep his body from shaking in this unebbing earthquake. He called out in anguish to the unmoving Vader. "Father."

The lightning barrage continued, his body now curled in a fetal position. Numb from the intensity of the attack and the pain, he lost track of all time and sensibility.

Even with the lapse he'd had in memory after being subjected to the Emperor's lightning barrage, he knew his father had sacrificed his own life to save his son's. Such an act, which was worthy only of a Jedi Knight, brought Anakin Skywalker back into the Light.

Deep down, Luke knew the reason he'd suddenly been stirred from his slumber had nothing to do with reliving the trying experiences he'd undergone during his final confrontation the night before. The dream he'd had had been much more vivid and horrifying than that.

He shook his head. It wasn't a dream. It was a vision.

The last time he'd had a vision like this he was training to become a Jedi with Yoda on Dagobah. In that vision, he'd glimpsed into the Han and Leia's future, seeing them tortured while being held in his father's clutches in Cloud City, and he'd chosen to rush off to help his friends before completing his training.

This vision was different -- sort of. It involved a woman named Trisha Summers he'd met not long ago. She wasn't an ordinary woman. She was a Jedi Knight from Naboo, and although he didn't quite understand why or how it had happened -- he'd fallen in love with her.

The images he'd seen in vision were still fresh, and Luke closed his eyes to let it replay in his mind.

Trisha, her arms crossed over her chest, lie motionless on a floating black slab. Her eyes were closed as if she were deep in sleep. He saw himself reach out to touch her. She felt cold, like ice, like death.

He had to do something to save her. He fumbled for the lightsaber at his belt but it wasn't there. Closing his eyes, he summoned the Force. As he felt it flow through him, he concentrated on trying to dislodge the woman he loved from the ice, but nothing resulted from his efforts.

Despite his intial setback, he refused to give up. He tried to do everything within his power to free her from her icy peril but his attempts continued to fail. As his frustration and despair he felt increased, maniacal laughter echoed through his mind. "Your feeble skills and love can't save her, Jedi."

Shuddering, Luke's eyes snapped open, but the vision and its deathly implications still lingered.

The dark digital screen hovering above his bed's headboard flickered on revealing a halographic image of a nurse. "Commander Skywalker, would you like a glass of water or something to help you sleep?"

"No, thank you," he managed a smile. He really didn't need anything and he most certainly didn't want anything that induced sleep because it'd only mean more visions.

"If there's anything we can do for you let us know," the holographic nurse told him before its image faded into blackness.

After a moment Luke slowly climbed out of bed. His bear feet tread across the sterile floor as he walked over to the large window. As he stared into the lights of the Sullustian city that was still reveling in its new found freedom, his black-gloved right hand rested over his chin and mouth.

She was out there somewhere and she was in danger.

He didn't care what it took but he had to warn her, he had to rescue her.

"So, Skywalker, you've had a nightmarish vision," a man, shrouded in a black robe, rumbled, having sensed the young Jedi's thoughts.

Leaning back to relax in his leather chair, the man rubbed his hands together, savoring the thought that soon the Jedi would see their end. Compassion had long been the downfall of the Jedi and he planned use that weakness to his advantage to bring about the final demise of the order.

"Soon, Skywalker, you'll meet your doom," the man's manacial laughter echoed through the hold of the ship.

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Reviewed by Felix Perry 8/9/2007
Though I was never a Star Wars Fan, my little brother was though, I found this both an interesting and enjoyable read as you build up steam from the opening dream sequence up until the evil father gloating at the end...


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