Anakins Reward

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05 Aug 2014 18:49 #154713 by
Anakins Reward was created by
Written by Miles

“Is it done?” The Emperor asked in bland distraction.

“It is, Master.” Anakin said, kneeling before his lord.

“Then you have failed.”

Anakin’s heart leapt in his chest and his body flashed with adrenaline. He could feel the pressure of the Force bearing down upon him. “Master! You ordered me to kill the younglings. I did as you commanded!”

The Emperor’s eyes darkened as he looked up. “You have shown that you are willing to sacrifice your love for petty things.”

Anakin stood and flashed with anger. The Force surged with rage within him. “I did this for love!”

“You did it for power!” The word power resonated through the room, and the Force bowed before its lord, leaving Anakin’s spirit empty and hollow, abandoned to the shadows. With the veil removed from his eyes, the Emperor’s words twisted in the heart of his apprentice. “And power you will have. You have earned that much. Those with power can give it to their servants easily enough. But you are now a slave.”

“A slave? To what? To who?” Anakin demanded in an effort to regain his strength.

“To the dark side,” the Emperor replied calmly. “You were given an opportunity to show your mastery of it, but you denied yourself, and in so doing have sacrificed yourself to your desire for power.”

“I denied nothing!”

The Force twisted and turned its gaze upon the apprentice, bearing down like a wrathful god. “Did you love them? Any of them? Those children?”

“I …” he hadn’t given a thought to it until just that moment. He had resolved himself to the task and cast all thoughts of consequence aside.

“Did … you … love … them?”

He remembered the faces, the games that he played with them, the lessons he taught them, the way that their laughter made his heart smile. He remembered the screams and the terror he gave them in the end. His soul collapsed. “Yes … yes I did.”

“Then why did you kill them?”

“Because you ordered it, Master!” he blurted in desperation. “Because it serves our cause. It needed to be done to assure the future!” He was clinging to the justifications he had been telling himself over and over again, his mind grasping desperately for support that wasn’t there.

The Emperor sighed and with it, the Force receded. “Anakin, I had greater hope for you.” There was a long pause as the Emperor gathered his thoughts.

“A Sith wields the dark side like a weapon. You set aside your feelings of love for something else, some ambition of an old man who promises you things you long to hear. The dark side wormed its way into you and you have surrendered to its power. You think that is where a Sith finds his power? A Sith’s power isn’t in the dark side, it is in mastering the dark side. You have become a slave to your own denial. You are now no more useful than a slave to me.”

Anakin stood, trembling, confused, abandoned, unable to understand.

“I will find uses for you, of course,” The Emperor continued. “I will not cast you out to oblivion like you deserve, slayer of children you love. I will use you to strike fear into the hearts of all who hear your name. I will wield you as I wield the dark side, as a tool.” He rose and walked slowly over to the side table and poured himself a drink. There was a long pause as he looked down into the reflections of the brandy in the glass.

“I had wanted a successor, but you do not know when to embrace your own heart and when to deny me. Your surrendered your freedom cheaply.” The visage of his face held like stone. “Disappointing.”

“What can I do, Master?” Anakin’s voice cracked, desperate for approval. He didn’t know whether to be afraid or apologize. Like so many other things, he had no direction without someone else to guide him, ignorant of his own heart.

“Do?” the Emperor took a drink “You can do nothing. Fear is your manacle.” He returned slowly to his thrown. “You will live a life in fear. It will make you strong. It will inspire you and you will learn as its slave how to master its use. But until you can reign over your own fear, you will forever be nothing but a puppet. I will pull your strings.”

“I’m not afraid!” Anakin retorted.

“You are afraid of me … of what I will do … of what would happen if I were to leave you. You fear loss.” He sat down and swirled the liquid in the glass. “I am all you have now. You killed everything else in your blind ambition.”

Anakin’s strength failed him and he fell to his knees. He refused to believe what he was hearing. His mind spun with all that he had done and all that he had in return, clinging to denial to the very end.
The Emperor smiled with compassion, offering a redemptive gift, knowing the youth would not hear it. “Denial has enslaved you, Anakin. Until you slay your bindings, you will never know freedom.”

Anakin wept, not knowing prophesy had unfolded before him … lost in his prison of self.

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