Vader chaperones his son into the presence
of his boss, who quickly releases Luke from his
handcuffs from across the star-dappled room.
Luke seems impressed. Then he puts on his cool face. Soon
I’ll be dead, & you with me. But Palpatine sneers:
we are quite safe from your friends here.*
He points out the window to exhibit A:
from this distance it looks like that cosmic melee
is just a few insignificant flashing lights,
but Palpatine assures him that it’s
the end of the alliance &—he flashes a hint
of a smile—the end of your insignificant
rebellion. Luke eyes his saber on the emperor’s
throne. Palpatine grits his teeth. Give in to your anger.