It must have begun as a happy day. After nearly thirty years of legal wrangling, the children of the late tyrant Darth Vader (real name, Anakin Skywalker) were finally about to hear what had been left to them in his will. The contents of that document turned out to be a shock for everyone concerned.
Leia fled the room in tears almost immediately when it was revealed she had been left nothing, on account of her father not being aware of her existence until the day of his death. Sadly for Luke it appeared that Emperor Palpatine, being essentially evil, did not pay well, and Vader had very little of any value to leave to his rebellious son.
A hundred credits had been left to pay for the funeral, but as Luke had already burnt his father’s corpse in a private ceremony it was kept for legal fees.
The remainder of Vader’s meagre savings was left to the Sandpeople Foundation for Massacre Survivors, which only confused and upset the young Skywalker even further.
Among the possessions left to Luke were: a photograph of his father’s late dog, Grand Moff Barking; a piece of deathstar; a helmet polishing kit; and a winner’s trophy for a bizarrely lethal pod race he won at the age of nine.
Luke, a self-proclaimed ‘Jedi Knight’, had expected a much larger inheritance from the late right-hand man of the evil Emperor of the galaxy. However, it turns out that not only was he a bit of an ascetic loner, but many of the evil deeds ascribed to him were actually the work of an officer called Steve.
“Steve’s just a bloke,” said a former admiral of the Empire, now in exile in the Dagobah system. “Darth was a cyborg in big black armour, with a terrifying voice and magical powers. He was the obvious choice to be the public face of evil.
“Darth was by all accounts quite a nice bloke for an employee of a fascist dictatorship. He was friendly and encouraging to the kids on work experience, and always had a kind word for the staff in the canteen. He wasn’t suited to the job, really. He wanted to work with sick animals, but there wasn’t much call for that kind of thing back on Tatooine. They kill womprats for fun there.”
To make matters worse for Skywalker junior, he was given letters that Darth had written to him for years, but which he had never recieved. As a boy, Luke was stolen from his father by Obi Wan Kenobi, a man stupid enough to hide Luke on his father’s home planet, in his old neighbourhood and with the family surname still attached. Despite this, Luke had never recieved the dozens of letters sent to him by his father, as his guardians Owen and Beru Lars had kept them from him, ultimately sending them back to Darth.
The letters reveal the change in Darth from a lonely man crying out for help from his son, to the bitter and twisted scourge of the galaxy he eventually became. The final letter, written in Bothan blood, rejects Luke and affirms Darth’s dedication to assisting the emperor in wiping out the rebel scum.