Jump to content
Washington Football Team Logo

Star Wars: Dark Lord -- The Rise of Darth Vader


Recommended Posts

I'm off to the bookstore. :)


Dark Lord Arrives

November 22, 2005

Today marks the release of Star Wars: Dark Lord -- The Rise of Darth Vader, the hardcover novel from Del Rey Books that tells the events that follow immediately after Episode III. Discover the first assignments that Lord Vader had to undertake for his dark master, and how he cemented his reputation early as the ultimate enforcer of the Emperor's will. Written by James Luceno, Dark Lord forms a bookend to Episode III together with his previous work, Labyrinth of Evil, the prequel to events in Revenge of the Sith. What follows is an excerpt from this latest novel.



Cash Garrulan was trying to figure out how he could unload eight hundred pairs of knockoff Neuro-Saav electrobinoculars in a hurry when Jally burst into his office to draw his attention to the security monitors.

In mounting annoyance, Garrulan watched twenty clone troopers climb from a wheeled transport and take up positions around the aged, sprawling structure that was his headquarters.

"Stormtroopers, no less," Garrulan said. "Probably sent by the regional governor to grab whatever they can before we depart." Pushing himself upright, he swept a stack of data cards from his desk into an open attaché case. "Give the troopers our munitions overstock. Don't make a stand, whatever you do. If things get rough, offer them more -- the electrobinoculars, for instance." He grabbed his cloak and threw it over his shoulders. "I, however, am not about to suffer the indignity of an arrest. I'll take the back stairs and meet you at the docking bay."

"Good choice. We'll handle the clones."

Hurrying out of his office and through the stockroom, he pressed the release for the back door, only to find a towering figure filling the entryway. Dressed in black from outsize helmet to knee-high boots, the masked figure had his gloved fists planted on his hips in a way that spread his cloak wide.

"Going somewhere, Vigo?"

The slightly bass voice was enhanced by a vocoder of some sort and underscored by deep, rhythmical breathing, obviously regulated by the control box strapped to the figure's broad and armored chest.

Vader, Garrulan told himself. The Grievous-like monstrosity Shryne said had been "added to the mix."

"May I inquire who wishes to know?"

"You're free to ask," Vader said, but left it at that.

Garrulan tried to compose his thoughts. Vader and his stormtroopers hadn't come for handouts. They were hot on Shryne's trail. Still, he thought there might be a way to win Vader over.

"I'm not and never have been a Separatist. I just happen to be living on a Sep world."

"Your former allegiances don't concern me," Vader said. Stretching out his right hand, Vader yanked Garrulan off his feet and carried him through the foyer and into the office, where he deposited him in a castered chair, which rolled backward and struck the wall.

"Make yourself comfortable," Vader said.

Garrulan rubbed the back of his head. "It's going to be like that, is it?"

"Yes. Like that."

Garrulan forced a breath. "Well, I'd offer you a chair, as well, but I don't think I have another one large enough."

The commander of Vader's troopers entered from the front room while Vader was taking in the office's lavish appointments.

"You've done well for yourself, Vigo."

"I get by," Garrulan said.

Vader stood over him. "I'm searching for two Jedi who escaped a transport that was to have delivered them to Agon Nine."

"Enchanting spot. But what makes you think--"

"Before you say another word," Vader cut him off, "be advised that I know that you and one of the Jedi go back a long way."

Garrulan immediately revised his plans. "You're talking about Roan Shryne and the girl."

"Then they did come here."

Garrulan nodded. "They asked for my help in leaving Murkhana."

"What arrangements did you make?"

"Arrangements?" Garrulan gestured broadly to the room. "I didn't come by all this by accident. I was surprised even to see Shryne alive. I told them that I don't help traitors. In fact, I reported their visit to local authorities."

Vader turned to the stormtrooper commander, who nodded his head and moved into the packing room.

"You wouldn't lie to me, Vigo." Vader didn't make it a question.

"Not until I get to know you better."

The commander returned. "He did contact the local garrison commander, Lord Vader."

It was impossible to determine if Vader was at all satisfied. At last, Vader said: "Do you know where Shryne was headed from here?"

Garrulan shook his head. "He didn't say. But he knows Murkhana well, and I'm only one of his local contacts. But, of course, you already know that."

"I wanted to hear it from you," Vader said.

Garrulan smiled to himself. Vader had taken the bait. "Happy to oblige . . . Lord Vader."

"If you were Shryne, what would be your next move?"

"Well, now we're speculating, aren't we," Garrulan said, relaxing somewhat. "I mean, you appear to be asking my professional opinion on the matter."

"And if I am?"

"I only thought there might be something in it for me."

"What is it you want, Vigo? You already appear to have more than you need."

Garrulan adopted a more serious tone. "Material things," he said in a dismissive manner. "I need you to put in a good word for me with the regional governor."

Vader nodded. "That can be arranged -- providing that your professional opinion amounts to anything."

Garrulan leaned forward. "There's this Koorivar by the name of Bioto. Dabbles in smuggling and other ventures. Owns a very fast ship called the Dead Ringer." He paused while the commander disappeared once more, undoubtedly to communicate with Space Traffic Control. "If I were in a hurry to get offworld with the least amount of problems, Bioto's the one I'd turn to."

"Lord Vader," the commander said suddenly, "STC reports that the Dead Ringer recently launched from Murkhana Landing. We have the projected flight path."

Vader turned, his cloak swirling. "Contact the Exactor, Commander. Order that the ship be moved into a position to intercept." Without further word he moved into the front room, only to stop short after a few long strides. "You're very clever, Vigo," he said, turning partway to Garrulan. "I won't forget this."

Garrulan inclined his head in a bow of respect. "Nor will I, Lord Vader."

A moment after Vader exited, Jally returned, blowing out his breath in relief. "Not someone I'd feel good about crossing, boss."

"He does have a way," Garrulan said, getting to his feet.

"Forget the rest of this junk. Have our ship readied for launch. We're done with Murkhana."

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...