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13 May 2007 @ 06:42 pm
To Know You, Chapter 1, Star Wars AU, Luke Skywalker, Rated G  
TITLE: To Know You, Chapter 1
AUTHOR: acherons_blade
FANDOM: Star Wars AU
CHARACTERS: Luke Skywalker
RATING: Rated G
WORD COUNT: about 1430
TIME FRAME: After The Empire Strikes Back
DISCLAIMERS: I don’t own the characters, just like to play with them.
SUMMARY: Luke is curious about the man claiming to be his father.




To Know You, Chapter 1

“Are you sure that he will come here?” Luke Skywalker fixed the older man with a contemplative stare.

“Yes, he will come here. He always does this time of the season. To rest.”

Luke thought about that for a moment. To rest. That Darth Vader, fearsome Dark Lord of the Sith and the Emperor’s right hand man, needed rest was…an anomaly.

And yet…he was a man after all. No matter that a good portion of his body was mechanical, he was still human, wasn’t he? Luke hoped so. Though now known as Darth Vader, he had once been a man named Anakin Skywalker. A Jedi Knight. Father of Luke.

What had he been like? When he had been Anakin?

Luke sighed and looked down at his hands. The right one was mechanical though in the dim light it was impossible for anyone else to notice that. But Luke knew. He flexed his hand and, not for the first time, wondered how Vader had ended up the way he was. How had he been so injured?

The sound of laughter brought Luke out of his thoughts and he looked up to see a group of people arm in arm, laughing and walking down the stone street to the center of the town.

It was the season of celebration here. The parties and parades and good times would continue for days to come. Not for the first time, Luke wondered why his father would come to this place, at this time.

Turning his head he looked at the old man who sat across from him. He was smoking a slim cigar, the smoke from it floated around his head lazily and now and then Luke thought he could see things in it…pictures.

“Why does he come here? Why would he want to be here at this time? When everyone is happy and celebrating?”

The old man was silent and for a moment Luke thought he wouldn’t answer. Then he shrugged his shoulders and removed the cigar from his mouth. He stared at the glowing end of it. “Perhaps he enjoys it.”

Luke snorted in disbelief. “Oh, yes, I can picture it now. Vader in all his armored glory, dancing in one of the parades with a lei of flowers round his neck.” He hadn’t intended to sound so…bitter.

The man stared at him and seeing the look in his eyes, Luke turned his own away and looked towards the river where barges decorated with colored lights floated. He could hear music filtering from them on the gentle breeze and wondered how it would feel to be among them with all his cares and worries faded away.

The man spoke again abruptly, causing Luke to startle. “He doesn’t wear his armor here.”

Luke looked at him again. The man’s eyes were chameleon-like. First a plain brown, then green, then with a touch of blue. Deep lines radiated out from the corners and framed his mouth. There was a white scar on one cheekbone and another smaller one on his chin.

At first Luke thought he must not have heard him correctly. Of course, Vader always wore his armor. He would not survive without it. It breathed for him. It encased what was left of his body in a protective shell.

“He always wears his armor.”

“Not here.”

“You’re mistaken.” Perhaps this had all been a wild goose chase. Perhaps Vader did not come here and Luke had made a mistake in believing this man.

The man watched Luke, a look of speculation in his eyes now. “I think I have seen him more than you have. And spoken with him.”

The words were out of Luke’s mouth before he could help himself. “What does he sound like? Does he…sound like me?”

The man put the cigar back in the corner of his mouth. “His voice is very hoarse. From old injuries, I assume. He…may sound a little like you. I asked him one time where he grew up and he said he mostly lived on Coruscant since he was nine years of age. He did not say where he had been before that.”

“Tatooine. He was from Tatooine.” Luke’s voice was barely a whisper but the man heard what he said.

“Tatooine. That’s in the Outer Rim, isn’t it?”

Luke nodded, seeing suddenly the bright sunlight and endless sand dunes. And Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen. He still could not reconcile the idea of Vader growing up in such a place. He must have been very different then.

“Why were you talking to him?” Luke knew the man was a trader of sorts, he sometimes worked out of one of the shops on the main causeway in the city. But still, Luke could not envision how this man’s path could have crossed with his father’s enough that they had spoken with each other about common everyday things. It…did not fit Luke’s perception of his father.

“He has come into the shop a few times over the years. That is where I first met him. He is interested in some of the mechanical devices that I collect and sell and more than once showed me how one could be repaired.”

Luke frowned a little. A common interest then, of mechanical things, between himself and his father. How strange.

The man removed the cigar from his mouth, carefully snuffed out the burning end on the stone wall, and wrapped it and slid it into a pocket of his jacket. He cleared his throat and Luke had the distinct impression that he was building up to a few more difficult questions.

Not looking at Luke, he began to abruptly speak again and his voice had a harsh tone to it that Luke had not heard before. “When you first came to me, asking about Vader, you said you were merely curious and meant no harm to him or anyone else here. I need you to confirm that this is true.”

Luke took a deep breath, unable to find his voice immediately. He thought back again to the first time he had seen Vader, across the hangar bay of the Empire’s murderous Death Star. He thought of Cloud City, of their disastrous meeting. He thought of the Dark Lord’s claim of their relationship. More memories of pain, both physical and mental filled his mind.

And then…he thought of his time on the Falcon, after Leia and Lando had rescued him. He thought of Vader’s call to him through the Force, of how it had felt for his mind to be connected with his, if only for a brief moment. Not frightening. Not painful. Not repulsive. But…comforting. Right. As nothing else in his life had ever been.

And that was what had brought him here. To find that feeling again. To find that comfort from a man that the rest of the galaxy feared. To know about him. To know why.

Finally, Luke Skywalker began to speak in answer to the other man’s question. “I did not come here to harm Darth Vader or cause any kind of trouble for him. I came here…to learn about him…as is my right.”

The man scowled at Luke’s unusual choice of words. Right? What right was the young man talking about? What would give someone the right to know about someone else? The simple answer occurred to him then and he drew a deep breath and held it before letting it out again.

“Very well. I was told earlier that his ship was expected within the hour. We need to make our way to the docking bay.”

Luke looked up suddenly and reached out a hand. “You remember…that I want to see him but I…don’t want him to see me?”

“I remember.” He stood up and looked down at the still seated younger man. “You do realize that the man has…an uncanny way of…knowing things.”

Luke nodded. “I know. But I will protect myself from that.” He locked eyes with the other man. “I also will not cause you any harm or trouble for helping me.”

“Just watch your own self.” He checked the time on a strange round device he pulled from another pocket. “We need to be going if you’re to be there when he disembarks.”

Without waiting for a reply, he took off at a steady pace down the street. Luke hurried after, pulling his hood down over his head. His heart was already beating quickly in anticipation. And this time there was no fear. His father.

 
 
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