Star Wars Comic Book 1979 issue 21

Princess Leia is down to one guard to get past in her escape. The Princess feigns illness failing to the ground. The guard comes to her aid and she swipes his side arm. She wants answers. She asks why there aren’t more guards on the executive suite. He tells her they are on special duty. The big game is in progress and so they are assigned to the casinos. She deduces what might be planned and then stuns the guard. She then strips him of his equipment and stuffs him in a closet. She is not sure where everyone is, only the force knows. She remembers the Crimson Casino and heads off to try and find it. She plans to listen to the radio for any developments. She then recounts that they were only trying to get Luke help, not stumble into an Empire conspiracy. She hopes she can discredit the scheme, if they are quick enough. She needs proof though. She wants to find the loot and get it off the cruiser. She isn’t sure how, but she’ll try. Ben comes to Luke. He tells him not to ru but to face the unknown. Luke says he’ll try. Then Darth Vader pops up. He tries to shoot him but it doesn’t work. A light saber won’t either. Luke must actually fight him without weapons. He fights this battle in his mind as his body fights it’s own battle. He breaks out of the machine he is restrained in. He breaks his things out of a locker and flees the hospital ward. He conquers Darth Vader in his mind. Ben points out it’s merely a shadow he’s defeated but that it’s also his own fear. Leia goes to where the transmissions are about Luke and they are reunited. He’s also killed or at least knocked out a bunch of people. He tells her he was fighting a trance. He explains he was meditating and his mind touched another mind in the process. It was very evil and strong. It made him want to hide, crawl inside himself and never come out again. He tells her it confirms for him that Darth Vader is alive and searching for them. Meanwhile, Darth Vader is on another planet. There is a Rebel team there. A storm trooper tells him one might live. Darth Vader questions the surviving rebel. He wants to know who did it. He is told it is the half man, half cyborg Valance. Valance is searching for Leia and a boy with two droids. A rebel tried to fight him and he killed them all. He then kills him with a light saber. He is amused that he has a rival. Captain Wermis has checked the coordinates from Vader and there is nothing there. Vader thinks he must have sensed something on passing ship. The captain makes the mistake of calling Darth Vader a dear boy. He’s a little bit amused but calls out the Captain for these words. After doing what Darth Vader has asked they head towards the wheel. Back on the wheel, Master-Com interrupts Grayshade, angering him. But he has come to tell him that Princess Leia has escaped. Now he’s really mad. Master-Com was supposed to stay with Leia. He tells him that since the doors were sealed and there were hand picked guards he did not see why he had to stay. Grayshade informs him that those guards had been sent off on special assignment. Master-Com insists that those instructions were not in his database. Grayshade is also aware of what Master-Com was doing “studying the two droids.” Grayshade points out that he had not approved of it. Master-Com points out he asked rather vaguely and that he did not approve or deny it, so it’s gray area. Master-Com counters saying he’s doing the same thing with Princess Leia. Grayshade’s handpicked crew have gone to visit Commander Strom. The team finds the stolen wheel profits right in the hold. Someone asks if they got everyone as they can’t have witnesses. However, R2D2 is recording it all as he, C3PO, Luke and Leia all watch. In the medical section of the wheels gladiator pits Han Solo has been declared fit for action. Han asks about exiting the games with current winnings. It’s not enough to cover all he owes. The doctor tells him if he quits now they will keep his ship and he’ll be put on an Imperial Prison ship and sent to the spice mines on Kessel. He’s ready to go back in. Round two is in zero gravity. He also sees Chewbacca and is not happy.

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