Vader heard the old voice of Obi-wan Kenobi probing the back of his mind, "Have you realized the values of the Dark Side are so hollow?"
Claws scraped the metal coffi- box, containing his true form and maintaining its coma-like state. "I am sure. I have made the right decision. This is what I want." He undid a latch on the lid, and opened the coffin, gazing down at his form.
There would be pain, he knew. The breathing, done for him, constant and steadfast. The vocoder allowing his voice to be heard, for him to roar. The mask concealing his hairless form, the naked throat where his mane had been burned off. He pressed a button on the inside of the box, watching arms move inside the box, lift the veil off the face below him, and bore his eyes into his own face.
Its skin was a pasted pink, with a white tinge. Its skin caved in on the right side of its face, as if the rock and shattered and melted its skin there. No, he recalled, summoning the memory. That's that side of your face you laid on the shore when you were too weak to move. His eyes trailed to the gap in its skin, on the top of the head. An error in the reconstruction surgery. He thinks, his eyes closing for a moment, tail flicking. You will have no mane. No tail. You will lose the things you so desperately missed.
"But I will become death. I will be powerful." That was what a Sith Lord truely strived for- power, and in the case of Darth Vader, to control death. If he was the one to kill someone, then it was he who controlled death, he who decided life. Vader pressed another button, the mask and helmet coming out of the woodworks and placing itself on the head, and the breathing slowly beginning to cycle, and Vader closing the lid. Okay.
The weight of the Emperor's gaze fell on his shoulders as his Master entered the Cabin, his robe and his tail sweeping as he moved. The objects in the cabin, the dust, seemed to make way for the Emperor, and Vader lowered his head, bowing to his Master. "You know this to be true. Vader, this body is weak. You must return to your form. Do you not miss what it holds?"
"Yes, my master." Vader says, the leopard allowing him to rise, and turning back to the box. Vader shut his eyes tightly, opening the lid again, and reaching in, pressing a paw below the chest box, and sucking in a deep breath.
Darkness. A thump. He hears the cackling of his Master, lightning striking outside on a sunny day, and the earth shaking. His eyes open, and he sees red. He slowly heaves up, his bones creaking, and outstretching his hands, moving everything and setting himself. Vader rose out of the coffin, raising his hand, and summoning a mound of black fabric off the wall, letting it come around and drape over him, and clasping his cape to his form. He looked down at the unconscious lion, then to his Master, letting the sound of his breathing encompass the room, and straightened up, standing on his hind legs-
"Like a mountain," The Emperor comments, tilting his head up and smiling with his awful grin. "Very good, Lord Vader. What will you do with this lion?"
"I consider killing him, but he is of my species, who are near extinct. And he is too dumb to share information." He hears the Emperor hum. "I see your reasoning. But is this out of weakness? Softness?"
"No, Master. It is out of strategy." The Emperor nods, listening, and making his choice. "That is fine. He will be released." They both nod, and they let the lion out the back, after Vader gave a few verbal warnings in their mother tongue, and cutting a deal. The Sith Lords looked at eachother, the air becoming heavy, crackling with electricity and power, the bond between them, snapping and sparking against eachother.
"This will be glorious indeed, Lord Vader. A time for power. And a time between us. These children you have collected, Vader, they will be useful to us. I cannot wait for their arrival." The Emperor mused, turning to leave, noticing how Vader straightened up and tilted his head, as if realizing the fate of these cubs. How the Emperor would use them. Vader did not respond, but watched as his Master left him be, and moved out of his Cabin a few minutes later, standing tall.
Like a mountain. Unmovable, straight, calm. Darth Vader did all this, presenting himself in his high and mighty way, hands clasped on his belt.
The power. The close snugness of his suit, its encompassing feeling, how it hugged him to the point of choking, trapped him, and yet, it was a comfort. It promised fear. It promised power. It promised the tyrant of Darth Vader and his combat skills. The Breathing that his cubs would be born listening to, the mask they would recognize as his face. And Vader, embracing this body. Embracing the Dark Side. Embracing the name- Darth Vader.