Chapter 9 | Flexing Our Imperial Might

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A NEW HOPE

This, dear citizen, is the convergence of my entire written work that articulates the tedious and significant steps that I executed to bring you the security and peace you enjoy today. This is where my memoirs intersect with Lord Vader's secret diary, his journal of events, personal thoughts, and feelings that he liberally spewed into the log recorders and hid from me.

It is not my intention to humiliate Lord Vader by publicizing his journal, but like the Death Star plans, Rebel spies persist everywhere and managed to hack into the Imperial network on board the Executor, connecting them to various military databases containing sensitive information. These insurgents threaten the very safety of our lives and—mark my words—they will pay for their treachery.

I find the whole of Vader's journal rather remarkable. (I send my thanks to the late Moff Nur for his encouragement of this practice.) If you ever read it, you must note that Lord Vader and I tend to have a more formal (public-facing) relationship because the potential of the Rebels hacking into our communications is real. That's why, if you've ever stumbled across a recording of our conversations, you will hear formalities such as "What is thy bidding, my master," or "Yes, my master." There can be no hint or sign of discord between us because the continual and smooth operation of the Empire depends on our harmony.

Vader, however intimidating, terrifying, and merciless he seems to you, remains a human being and I respect him. Both Vader and I enjoy an evening of relaxation here and there, even if it generally involves, in my case, my Inner Circle. You must remember that thirteen years of friendship did not dissolve when Anakin pledged himself to me that night on Coruscant. Thirteens years of mentoring did not disappear when Vader lost his limbs on Mustarfar, where I found him clinging to life by a thread through the power of the Dark Side. Thirteen years of investment did not vanish from sight when the man was forcibly encased in a life-saving suit of armor.

Today, we remain close friends and act as such when the time and place are appropriate. I believe, by reading his journal, you will see the man I admire as my Apprentice. You may, at this point, however, wish to read his journal first, or read our entries in comparison as I know you will find our differing perspectives enjoyable.

I will admit the Sith are complicated. Deception is one of our key tools and we employ it so effortlessly and with great success against our enemies. Unfortunately, we employ this tactic against each other as well, and when there are only two Sith, it's not always enjoyable. There are days when I seriously wonder if my old master, Darth Plagueis, was right about the evolution of the Rule of Two so that the Sith could escape death and work collaboratively instead of against each other. Even I admit the personal energies it takes to secure Vader's position can be tiring, and given his exploits with Starkiller, the reverse may be true as well.

Now, this is when it may become tricky to follow along. I plan to respond to past events documented in his journal. Or perhaps, I should just comment on his entries. I feel as though more needs to be said (strictly to inform you of my perspective), but I'm not sure as to how I should approach it. Perhaps I need to stick to my original plans and strive for the critical balance between re-telling and re-living. I need to think about this for a moment. I'll be back after I meditate.

I'm back. I've decided. It's simple, really. Instead of catching you up or writing an elaborate tale of events, (I fear I may have bored you in the earlier entries. I find it strange that I truly am a confident dictator and Sith Master but when it comes to my written words, I feel exposed and vulnerable. How interesting!) I will simply read and respond as I see fit.

So, having read his entry, I now know that Ambassador Leia Organa is one of the Rebel traitors. I can't say I'm surprised. As the daughter of Bail Organa, I wondered if her familial ties to him would implicate her in rebellious behavior. He had been, after all, a known traitor in my sights once before. I thought that his capture and narrow escape had quelled his appetite for rebellion. Apparently, I was wrong. I do not like to be wrong.

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