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My Side of the Story

I am Anakin Skywalker. You may know me as Darth Vader. You probably think of me as the evilest motherfucker that ever lived. Please reserve that judgment until you have read what follows.

There has been a lot of material produced purporting to be my “history.” I find it ironic that an ongoing theme through most of this material is the Jedi teaching that “many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.” I am also aware of the adage that “history belongs to the victor.” So if one looks at my “history” merely as this sort of superficial morality play, then I can see why Obi-Wan’s black and white self-aggrandizing version–and its good versus evil motif, in which my acceptance of the teachings of the Dark Side of the Force, and certain difficult decisions I made, especially during that emotionally charged and very stressful transitional period right at the end of the Clone Wars–might be appealing to one with a limited “point of view” like Obi-Wan’s. I contend that much of this recorded “history” is the result of Obi-Wan’s revisionism. So if you will allow me the luxury of some “revisionism” of my own, I will share my story– add my testimony to the record, if you will –and hopefully give some insight into my tragic saga.

First of all, let me explain my current situation. I am one with– or part of –the living force, at once everything at the same time nothing. I don’t go around much speaking to the living or appearing as faded specter. That’s Obi-Wan’s shtick. He’s trying to rekindle our defunct religion. For a time I did. I would often speak to my kids when they were alive, to offer comfort and guidance–as a father should. It was a duty in which I was remiss during their youth. I sometimes would even appear to them on special occasions. You know: holidays, birthdays, Death Star destruction parties, whatnot. Since then I have withdrawn into the netherworld of the Force, exploring, experimenting and experiencing the Force in its pure state. I have been communing with the few others who have, as Yoda puts it “learned the secret of immortality,” my first Master, Qui-Gon Gin, Lord Plagueis the wise who I did not know in life, the pious Master Yoda and, of course, the charlatan Obi-Wan.

I should point out that it was Master Qui-Gon who taught me the secret of immortality. It was he who visited me, gave comfort and guidance, even in the dark times when everyone else feared and hated me; when the Jedi called me enemy. Qui-Gon understood and guided me in my efforts to fulfill the prophecy and meet my destiny. In my life, he was the only one, with the exception of Luke and Padme who believed I could do it, and he was obviously the only one who could be with me the whole way.

Over the millennia, I have gained a complete understanding of both sides of the Force. I am the only Jedi to have done so. Even Qui-Gon resists some of the teachings the Dark Side has to offer. I alone understand the importance of keeping a balance of Light and Dark, the self and the other, knowledge and faith, compassion and strength. The prophecy said I was the one that would bring balance back to the force. Only now do I understand that it didn’t mean I needed to destroy the Sith, or the Jedi. It meant I should bring the two powers into balance. Sadly, my misguided attempts to fulfill the prophecy would result in the destruction of both.

Let me begin, not where Obi-Wan’s accounts merely get it wrong, but where they outright misrepresent. The Clone wars were beginning to wind down. We were coming off the euphoria of my defeat of Count Dooku. General Grievous was on the run and we would soon defeat him and bring the droid armies to our mercy. Through my years of friendship, I had earned the confidence of Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, and he had asked the Jedi Council to include me as his personal representative. When Master Windu told me that I would not be granted the rank of Master, I was wounded, but accepted the Council’s decision. However, from the time I joined the Council, I could sense a change in Master Kenobi. His distaste for my presence on the Council, and my lack of rank, was palpable. If I hadn’t been so blinded by admiration for him, I might have thought that I sensed the Dark Side in him. The others sensed the Dark Side’s presence in the Council chambers as well. Many of the Masters seemed ill at ease. I felt that the best thing to do was focus on my studies, double my efforts to perform my duties admirably and achieve the rank of Master as quickly as possible to relieve the tension. I’d hoped I could make Obi-Wan proud.

Later, I was offered the perfect opportunity to prove myself. Obi Wan approached me with orders to report to the council on the Supreme Chancellor’s activities. I was grateful for this opportunity. Understanding the Council’s growing distrust of Palpatine, I was glad to finally be involved in these most important matters.

It was my most important assignment to date. At the time the Jedi were beginning to lose trust in Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. The Dark Side seemed to envelop him and cloak his intentions. At the time we did not know if he was the Sith Lord we were seeking, or just a useful agent of the Sith. What I did know was that I hated the Sith. I wanted them dead. They’d murdered Master Qui-Gon, cut off my arm and started a war to destroy the Republic. Taking this assignment for the Jedi, I was confident, was the path to fulfill my destiny.

At the same time I was feeling a conflict between my Jedi duties, and my responsibilities to Padme and our child. At night, I was having nightmares about Padme dying in childbirth. I knew that it was the future that I saw. They were very much like the dreams I had of my Mother before she was killed. The thought of losing Padme was heart wrenching. My chest would feel tight and my throat would close up with the dread of it. It was unbearable. I went to Yoda, seeking guidance. He just ended up lecturing me on the dangers of a Jedi having “attachments.” He told me that “death is a natural part of life.” I found no comfort in his words; which seemed contradictory and unhelpful. I began to think that he and the other Jedi were withholding some knowledge of the Force that could help me save Padme.

Palpatine was much more sympathetic. He even held out hope for my situation. He told me the legend of the Sith Lord Darth Plagueis the Wise, who had learned how to cheat death and could heal people using the Dark Side of the Force. It was an ironic and tragic story for Plagueis could only save others, and not himself, from death. My excitement grew at the possibility that this knowledge might help Padme, but I also grew suspicious of Palpatine. He seemed to know a little too much about the Sith. I did not confront him immediately. I continued with the conversation, hoping to learn more about this mysterious power.

It wouldn’t be long before Palpatine revealed himself to me as the Sith Lord I suspected him to be. The Sith lord the Jedi had been searching for those 12 years. He not only revealed himself as the Sith Lord, but asked me to join him. I was enraged; but I couldn’t bring myself to destroy him for I knew that also meant destroying the Dark knowledge he promised to share.

The conflict was clouding my perception. I did not know what to do. It got to the point where I could not trust myself. I decided to inform Master Windu of what I had learned, and let him decide what to do about the Sith. I secretly hoped there might still be some way to learn what Palpatine had to teach.

I sat in the Jedi temple waiting for news. Master Windu and three others had gone to arrest Palpatine. The waiting was unbearable. In the silence of the temple my thoughts turned to Padme and the horror show of my dreams. Then I had a different premonition: Palpatine would not allow himself to be arrested and Master Windu would be forced to kill him. Master Windu would be successful and the knowledge to save Padme would be lost. Desperation set in. I was compelled to go to Palpatine’s chambers. When I got there I found Master Windu standing over Palpatine ready to strike him down. Palpatine fought back with his Sith powers. Electric current flowed through him and out his fingertips like lightening. He directed it at Master Windu, who deflected it with his light saber, back onto Palpatine. The current deformed Palpatine’s face into a grotesque mask. The lightening subsided and Palpatine slumped, seemingly exhausted. Master Windu was poised to strike. Thinking only of Padme, I pleaded with him to stop, but he was determined.

When he moved to strike, I quickly severed his arm with my own saber. The act did not feel like my own. It was as though my movements were controlled by some other’s will. I did not know if it was the will of my desperate love for Padme, or the machinations of Palpatine and his Dark influence. I fell into a trance-like state. I watched the scene as if behind a thick pane of glass. Palpatine hit Master Windu with a blast of energy knocking him out of the window. I was an accomplice in the death of a Jedi.

I fell to my knees. “What have I done?”

In my anguish I wasn’t fully aware of what was happening until I heard his words, “To cheat death is a power only one has achieved, but if we work together, I know we can discover the secret.” What the fuck?! Wait a minute. Oh, no he didn’t. The words burrowed into my brain engraving this deception in my conscience. The anger that rose in me seemed to become absorbed before I could find power in it. I had betrayed the Jedi, and the mandate they gave me. This lying fiend coerced me, but I went along willingly. He didn’t know how to save Padme. He didn’t know how to save Padme. I realized that I was well down the path to the Dark Side. It would dominate my destiny forever.

I wanted to kill him for his deception. I was powerless. I knew I must find a way to destroy him. I resolved to destroy him. My anguish drained me and I blacked out.

Out of the darkness, through my sobs and tears I heard a far away voice, “ shall be known as Darth Vader. Rise.” It was the voice of my new master the Sith Lord, Darth Sidious.

What had I done?

When I started to became aware of my surroundings, I found myself marching up the steps of the Jedi temple with a thousand Clone troops behind me. Inside, the reality of the situation hit me: In front of me stood the Jedi Younglings and Padawan Learners. They were scared and looking to me for protection, hungry for leadership. “Master Skywalker, there are too many of them, what do we do?” Behind me was the Clone Army; here to destroy them. To try and help the Jedi was certain death. To destroy the Sith, and to see Padme again, to have any chance at all to save her, I must to survive.

I had no choice.

My heart broke as I activated my light saber. What happened next is unthinkable. It has tortured me ever since. Thus was created the monster that Obi-Wan would see in me.

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  1. meme permalink
    May 30, 2005 9:42 AM

    i love you…..

  2. July 22, 2005 7:10 PM

    more sex…

  3. July 28, 2005 7:35 PM

    Meme, I am sorry but I can never love you as I loved Padme.

    Babibi, you do not have an answer for ‘forbidden-Jedi-sex’. If you are susceptable to the old Jedi mind trick — which I have no reason to believe you are, but if you are — you would learn a new definition of pleasure and euphoria as you were slowly…

    Um, excuse me… Let’s just say there’s a reason that shit’s forbidden, and leave it at that.

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