Vader stood beside his master, and glared intently at the next generation Skywalker, writhing on the floor, as Palpatine's evil force lightning surged through his body. Thousands of thoughts were flying through his mind. Should he stop the Emperor, for his son? He wasn't sure... But suddenly, Luke stopped moving, and slumped down, still.
The Emperor smiled manically, and lowered his hands. "A pity, to be sure... He could have been a powerful ally. Well, we must move on. We must proceed with our evacuation."
Vader stood bemused, staring straight ahead.
"Vader, wake up! We must leave now."
Vader snapped into consciousness. "Yes... Come, I'll get you to your shuttle." Vader held the Emperor by the arm, and they walked quickly out of the massive Throne Room. They marched down the hallway, towards the elevator. They reached it, and Vader pressed a switch, and the door slid open with a hiss. Vader allowed the Emperor to enter, and then followed. "Primary Ship bay," announced Vader, and the pod-like device began to hum gently as it slid down through one of the shafts that travelled through the whole battlestation. They could vaguely hear the chaos in the battlestation around them, the shout of officers, the crashing of ships and machinery as explosions ruptured the massive vessel. The pod suddenly jarred to a halt, and the door slid open again. This time, it revealed a large bay, filled with numerous large ships. Hundreds of people were running to their ships, shouting, all trying to save themselves from their fate aboard the Second Death Star.
Vader helped the Emperor Palpatine to his shuttle, and entered the access code on a panel beside the door. A large ramp slid downwards, and Palpatine began to walk up the ramp, a grimace smeared on his face. All these people, loyal servants to the Empire, or so he had thought. None of them had put a single thought towards their Emperor's safety, all filled with their own worries. If he found these people, they would be punished. This was the way of the Empire, and it's Emperor.
Vader followed the Emperor up the ramp, and then past him, and slid into the pilot's seat, as he manned the controls of the shuttle. He pressed several switches.
Outside the shuttle, a few officers stopped and watched the massive craft hover, vibrating the air around it.
Vader pressed a few more switches, and then gripped the handle before him, in his one remaining hand. With that, he guided the ship out of the hangar. The ship lurched forward, out into space. This was far from the usual calm of space, devoid of life and chaos. This was a battlefield. Hundreds of ships, ranging from TIE Fighters of all kinds, military personnel carriers, and transports, streamed away from the doomed space station. Outside the cockpit, Vader watched the Mon Calimari Cruisers, and other rebel ships travelling away from the battle, ready for the huge eruption about to occur. The wings of the shuttle folded downwards into their regular triangular configuration, and Vader began marking in the co-ordinates for Imperial Center.
Suddenly, half way through his calculations, an incredible blast ripped through space, tearing apart the smaller ships, and jolting the larger ships. Even the Emperor's impressively large shuttle was not immune, and both Vader and the Emperor were nearly knocked from their seats. An incredible wave of destruction ripped through the ocean of starships in the area, knocking them asunder, as the Emperor's pride, the second Death Star, was blown to pieces. Vader pulled hard on the controls, maintaining control of the ship.
Then, out of the blue, a small Corellian Freighter, the one he had been tracking for so long, flew past the cockpit, leaving a neon trail behind it and followed by a small X-Wing fighter. Vader was shocked, but not as angry as he had imagined he would be. He felt nothing, and he looked to the Emperor, to see his reaction. The Emperor sneered, but, other than that, there was nothing.
Then, the ship hummed distinctively, and Vader watched the stars streak past him as the ship moved into hyperspace. It was then that the Emperor spoke.
"When will we be at Imperial Center, Vader?"
"In..." Vader checked the onboard computer. "Three standard hours."
"I sense anger in you, Lord Vader. Does the death of the boy anger you?"
Vader stared straight ahead, not speaking.
"He was a mere boy, he was weak and insignificant. You need not fret over his loss."
"The boy..." Vader muttered.
"The boy was MY SON!!!" Vader swung out of his seat and grabbed Palpatine by the throat. "He was my son." Vader lifted Palpatine high in the air, and pinned him against the wall of the cockpit. The Emperor sneered, but did not seem too worried at this particular dilemma.
"You are weak, Vader. You are weak. The boy was right."
"You will pay for what you did, Palpatine."
"You delusional old fool, you dream of order in a chaotic galaxy. There is no order, you drained the order from it." This last point struck Palpatine where it mattered most. His ego. The Emperor looked at Vader with scorn, and Vader noticed the lightning crackling between his fingertips. Vader squeezed his throat tighter, and the Emperor began to gasp wildly.
"Vader, release me now, and I will let you live. No one challenges the Emperor. NO ONE!" Vader merely intensified his grasp, but was blown back suddenly with a blast of dark side lightning. He hit the ground on the opposite side of the cockpit, and the Emperor dropped to his knees, sucking in air. "You have made your last ever mistake, Vader. Now get up and fight me."
Vader got up to his knee, and then stood. "I am tired of your orders, Palpatine, and I will pay no more attention to them. Do to me what you will."
"You are weak, Vader. Just like your son, that pitiful little boy."
Vader knew what the Emperor was doing.
Anger is the path to the dark side.
"You, old man, cannot control me any more." Vader was defiant, and determined to refuse the Emperor. He realised now what the Dark Side did to people. What it had done to the Emperor's flesh, it was doing to his soul.
The Emperor smiled sickly. "Well, then, you... shall... die." Palpatine lifted his hands, and the electricity fizzled between his fingers, but he was stopped short.
"There is one thing you have forgotten, Emperor."
"And what is that?"
"I am stronger than you."
"Heh. Who is the delusional fool now?"
Suddenly, Vader became a blur, and streaked towards the Emperor, striking him down.
"Now, you will pay." Vader reached for the Force. He felt it, for the first time in ages, warm. It was so different to the dark side. Vader grabbed Palpatine, but not with his remaining hand. He felt the Force, flow through his body, channel through him, grab Palpatine's heart, squeeze.
Palpatine had a look of terror on his face. He released his force lightning again. Vader stood his ground, constricting the old man's heart, absorbing the electricity. Palpatine fell to the ground, curling into a ball, clutching at his heart.
"Vader..." he croaked.
"My name is Anakin Skywalker, and I am... a Jedi." With that, Palpatine slumped to the ground, unmoving.
Vader let out a gasp, and opened his fist. Was he a Jedi? He did not have time to think, and he dropped to the floor, his respirator system hissing wildly. Vader lay still, as the preservation systems in his suit shut down. The hissing breathes stopped.
Two days later, after the chaos settled on Coruscant, a reconnaissance ship was sent to the shuttle. When the team came aboard, they found the Emperor's body, decayed slightly, and the remains of Darth Vader's armour, empty.
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