INT. LARS HOMESTEAD/GARAGE — SUNSET
Luke enters the garage to discover the cyborgs nowhere in sight. He takes a small control rod from his utility belt and activates it; Threepio pops up from behind the skyhopper with a short yelp.
LUKE: What are you hiding back there for?
Threepio stumbles forward, but Artoo is still nowhere in sight.
C-3PO: It wasn’t my fault, sir. Please don’t deactivate me! I told him not to go, but he’s faulty, malfunctioning; kept babbling on about his mission.
LUKE: Oh, no!
Luke races out of the garage.
EXT. LARS HOMESTEAD — TWILIGHT
Luke rushes out of the domed entrance. Threepio joins Luke as he scans the landscape with his electrobinoculars, searching the darkening horizon for the small astromech.
C-3PO: That R2 unit has always been a problem. These astromechs are becoming too iconoclastic even for me to understand, sometimes.
LUKE: How could I be so stupid? He’s nowhere in sight. Blast it!
C-3PO: Pardon me, sir, but couldn’t we go after him?
LUKE: It’s too dangerous with all the raiders around. We’ll have to wait until morning.
OWEN: (O.S.) Luke, I’m shutting the power down!
LUKE: Alright, I’ll be there in a few minutes! (beat) Boy, am I gonna get it.
He takes one final look across the dim horizon.
LUKE: You know, that little 'borg is going to cause me a lot of trouble.
C-3PO: Oh, he excels at that, sir.
INT. LARS HOMESTEAD/COURTYARD — DAY
Morning slowly creeps into the sparse but sparkling oasis of the open courtyard. The idyll is broken by Owen, his voice echoing throughout the homestead.
OWEN: Luke? Luke‽ Luke!
INT. LARS HOMESTEAD/KITCHEN — DAY
Beru is at work preparing the morning breakfast. Owen enters.
OWEN: Have you seen Luke this morning?
BERU: He said he had some things to do before he started today, so he left early.
OWEN: (frowns) Before breakfast? That’s not like him. Did he take those two new 'borgs with him?
BERU: I think so. I’m sure I saw at least one of them with him.
OWEN: Well, he’d better have those units in the south range repaired by midday or there’ll be hell to pay.
EXT. JUNDLAND — DAY
The rock and sand of the desert floor are a blur as Threepio pilots Luke’s sleek landspeeder across the vast wasteland.
INT./EXT. LUKE’S SPEEDER - TRAVELLING - DAY
LUKE: Old Ben Kenobi lives out in this direction somewhere, but I don’t see how that R2 unit could have come this far. We must’ve missed him. Uncle Owen isn’t going to take this very well.
C-3PO: Sir, would it help if you told him it was my fault?
LUKE: (brightens) Sure. He needs you twice as much now. He’d probably only deactivate you for a day or so, or give you a partial memory flush….
C-3PO: On second thought, sir, Artoo would still be around if you hadn’t removed his restraining bolt.
LUKE: Wait, there’s a 'borg on the scanner, dead ahead. I see our little R2 unit. Hit the accelerator.
EXT. MESA — DUNE SEA — COASTLINE — DAY
From high atop a mesa, the tiny landspeeder can be seen gliding across the desert floor. In the foreground two weather-beaten TUSKEN RAIDERS swathed in mummy-like wrappings and shrouded in dusty desert cloaks peer over the edge of the rock. One of the marginally human creatures raises a slugthrower rifle and takes aim at the speeder, but his companion grabs the barrel before he can fire. They get into an animated argument in their coarse barbaric language. The second Tusken seems to get in the final word; the pair leaves the spot, scurrying over the rocky terrain.
EXT. MESA — CANYON — DAY
The Tusken raiders approach two large banthas standing lashed to a rock. The monstrous quaprupeds are as large as elephants, with huge red eyes, tremendous looped horns, and long, furry, dinosaur-like tails. The Tuskens mount the huge creatures’ saddled, shaggy backs and ride off down the rugged bluff.
EXT. CANYON — DAY
The speeder is parked on the floor of a massive canyon. Luke, with a rifle slung over his shoulder, stands before little Artoo.
LUKE: Hey, whoa, just where do you think you’re going‽
The little cyborg whistles a feeble reply. Threepio poses menacingly behind the little runaway.
C-3PO: (irate) Master Luke here is your rightful owner. We’ll have no more of this Obi-Wan Kenobi jibberish. And don’t talk to me of your mission, either. You’re fortunate he doesn’t blast you into a million pieces right here.
LUKE: Well, come on. It’s getting late. I only hope we can get back before Uncle Owen really blows up.
C-3PO: If you don’t mind my saying so, sir, I think you should deactivate the little fugitive until you’ve gotten him back to your workshop.
LUKE: No, he’s not going to try anything.
The little cyborg suddenly jumps to life with a mass of frantic whistles.
LUKE: What’s wrong with him now?
C-3PO: (worried) There are several creatures approaching from the southeast.
Luke swings his rifle into position and looks to the south.
LUKE: Tuskens! Or worse! C’mon, let’s have a look. C’mon.
EXT. CANYON — RIDGE — DAY
Luke carefully makes his way to the top of a rock ridge and scans the canyon with his macrobinoculars. Threepio struggles up behind the young adventurer.
LUKE’S P.O.V. — BANTHAS
LUKE: Well, there are two banthas down there, but I don’t see any … wait a second, they’re Tuskens all right. I can see one of them now.
Luke watches the distant Tusken raider. Suddenly something huge moves in front of his field of view.
EXT. CANYON — RIDGE — DAY
Before Luke or Threepio can react, a large, gruesome Tusken raider looms over them. Threepio, startled, backs away, right off the side of the ridge. The towering creature brings down his curved, double-pointed gaderffii — the dreaded axe of Tusken warriors. Luke blocks the blow with his rifle, which is shattered in the process. The terrified farm boy scrambles backward until he is forced to the edge of a deep crevice. The sinister raider stands over him with his weapon raised and lets out a horrible shrieking laugh.
EXT. CANYON — DAY
Artoo forces himself into the shadows of a small alcove in the rocks as the vicious Tuskens walk past carrying the inert Luke Skywalker, who is dropped in a heap before the speeder. The raiders rummmage through the speeder, throwing parts and supplies in all directions. Suddenly they stop. Everything is quiet for a few moments before a great howling moan reverberates through the canyon. The Tuskens flee in terror.
Artoo moves even tighter into the shadows as an aged man in shabby desert prospector’s clothing appears and leans over Luke. His ancient leathery face, cracked and weathered by the hot, aird climate, is set off by penetrating blue eyes and a scraggly white beard. BEN KENOBI squints, scrutinizing the unconscious farm boy, then rests his hand on Luke’s forehead. Artoo makes a slight sound. Ben straightens and turns, looking right at him.
BEN: Hello there! Come here, my little friend. No need to be afraid.
Artoo waddles over to where Luke lies, whistling and beeping his concern.
BEN: Don’t worry, he’ll be alright.
Luke begins to come around.
LUKE: What happened?
BEN: Rest easy, son, you’ve had a busy day. You’re fortunate to be in one piece.
LUKE: Ben? Ben Kenobi! Boy, am I glad to see you!
BEN: The Jundland wastes are not to be travelled lightly. It’s the misguided traveller who tempts the Tuskens’ hospitality. (beat) Tell me, young Luke, what brings you out this far?
LUKE: Oh, this little 'borg. I think he’s searching for his former master. I’ve never seen such devotion in a 'borg before. (beat) He claims to be the property of an Obi-Wan Kenobi. Is he a relative of yours? Do you know who he’s talking about?
Ben ponders this for a moment, scratching his scruffy beard.
BEN: Obi-Wan Kenobi … Obi-Wan? Now that’s a name I haven’t heard in a long time … a long time.
LUKE: I think my uncle knew him. He said he was dead.
BEN: Oh, he’s not dead. Not yet.
LUKE: You know him?
BEN: (smiles) Well of course I know him. He’s me! (beat) I haven’t gone by the name Obi-Wan since, oh, before you were born.
LUKE: Then the 'borg does belong to you.
BEN: I don’t seem to remember ever owning a 'borg. Very interesting….
He suddenly looks up at the overhanging cliffs.
BEN: I think we better get indoors. The Tuskens are easily startled, but they’ll soon be back and in greater numbers.
Artoo lets out a pathetic beep, causing Luke to remember something. He looks around.
EXT. SAND PIT — DAY
Little Artoo stands at the edge of a large sand pit, chattering away in electronic whistles and beeps. Luke and Ben stand over a very dented and tangled Threepio lying in the sand. One of his arms has broken off.
Luke tries reviving the inert cyborg by shaking him, then flips a switch on his back several times. Finally the mechanical man’s systems reboot.
C-3PO: Where am I? I must have taken a bad step….
LUKE: Can you stand? We’ve got to get out of here before the Tuskens return.
C-3PO: I don’t think I can make it. You go on, Master Luke. There’s no sense in you risking yourself on my account. I’m done for.
LUKE: No, you’re not. What kind of talk is that?
Luke and Ben help the battered robot to his feet.
INT. BEN’S CAVE/MAIN LIVING AREA — DAY
The small, spartan room is cluttered with desert junk, but still manages to radiate an air of time-worn comfort and security. Luke is in one corner repairing Threepio’s arm, as old Ben fiddles with Artoo.
BEN: Now, let’s see if we can’t figure out what you are, my little friend. And where you come from.
LUKE: I saw part of the message, and I —
Luke is cut short as the recorded image of the beautiful young Rebel princess is projected from Artoo’s face.
BEN: I seem to have found it.
Luke stops his work as the lovely girl’s image flickers before his eyes.
LEIA: General Obi-Wan Kenobi, I present myself in the name of the world family of Alderaan and of the Alliance to Restore the Republic. I break your solitude at the bidding of my father, Bail Organa, Viceroy and First Chairman of the Alderaan system. (beat) Years ago, General, you served the Old Republic in the Clone Wars. Now my father begs you to aid us again in our struggle against the Empire. I regret that I am unable to present my father’s request to you in person, but my ship has fallen under attack and I’m afraid my mission to bring you to Alderaan has failed. I have placed information vital to the survival of the Rebellion into the memory systems of this R2 unit. My father will know how to retrieve it. You must see this 'borg safely delivered to him on Alderaan. This is our most desperate hour. Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope.
There is a little static and the transmission is cut short. Old Ben leans back, silently puffing on a tarnished water pipe. Luke has stars in his eyes.
LUKE: You fought in the Clone Wars?
LUKE: But … that was so long ago.
BEN: I guess it was a while back. I was once a Jedi Knight, the same as your father.
LUKE: Jedi Knight‽ My father didn’t fight in the wars. He was a navigator on a spice freighter.
BEN: That’s what your uncle told you. Owen Lars didn’t hold with your father’s ideals. Thought he should have stayed here and not gotten involved. (beat) Owen was always afraid that your father’s adventurous life might influence you, might pull you away from Anchorhead. (shakes head) I’m afraid there wasn’t much of the farmer in Anakin Skywalker.
BEN: The Lars’ gave you their name when they adopted you, but you were your father’s son.
LUKE: (solemn) I wish I’d known him.
BEN: He was the best pilot I ever knew, and a cunning warrior. I understand you’ve become quite a good pilot yourself. (wistful) And he was a good friend. (beat) Which reminds me….
Ben gets up and goes to a chest, which he begins rummaging through. As Luke finishes repairing Threepio and starts to fit the restraining bolt back on, Threepio looks at him nervously. Luke thinks about the bolt for a moment, then puts it on the table. Ben shuffles up and presents Luke with a peculiar item.
BEN: I have something here for you. Anakin wanted you to have this when you were old enough. I tried to give it to you once before, but your uncle wouldn’t allow it. He feared you might follow old Obi-Wan on some damned-fool idealistic crusade like your father did.
C-3PO: Sir, if you’ll not be needing me, I’ll close down for awhile.
LUKE: Sure, go ahead.
In Ben’s hand is a chrome bar, 606 mm in length, with black inlay and a square guard at one end. It greatly resembles a katana hilt.
LUKE: What is it?
BEN: Your father’s lightsaber. This is the formal weapon of a Jedi Knight. Not as clumsy or as random as a blaster.
With a sharp snap-hiss, a particle beam shoots out, forming a pulsating red-white energy blade a metre long and 0.1 mm thick. Red light plays across the surroundings as Ben manipulates the saber.
BEN: (cont’d) More skill than simple sight was required for its use. An elegant weapon for a more civilized age. (beat) For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Before the dark times, before the Empire.
Disengaging the blade, Ben hands the lightsaber to Luke. Luke examines the hilt; there are no buttons or switches or dials visible — no controls whatsoever.
LUKE: How did my father die?
BEN: A young Jedi named Darth Vader, who was a pupil of mine until he turned to evil, helped the Empire hunt down and destroy the Jedi Knights. He betrayed and murdered your father. Now the Jedi are all but extinct. (solemn) Vader was seduced by the dark side of the Force.
LUKE: The Force?
BEN: The Force is what gives the Jedi their power. It’s an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us. It binds the universe together. (beat) You must learn the ways of the Force if you’re to come with me to Alderaan.
LUKE: (laughs) Alderaan? I’m not going to Alderaan. I’ve got to get home. It’s late. I’m in for it as it is.
BEN: I need your help, Luke. She needs your help. I’m getting too old for this sort of thing.
LUKE: I can’t get involved! I’ve got work to do! It’s not that I like the Empire. I hate it! But there’s nothing I can do about it right now. It’s such a long way from here.
BEN: That’s your uncle talking.
LUKE: (sighs) Oh, God, my uncle. How am I ever going to explain this?
BEN: Remember, Luke, the suffering of one man is the suffering of all. Distances are irrelevant to injustice. If not stopped soon enough, evil eventually reaches out to engulf all men, whether they have opposed it or ignored it.
LUKE: Look, I can take you as far as Anchorhead. You can get a transport there to Mos Eisley or wherever you’re going.
BEN: Very well. That will do for a beginning. Then you must do what you feel is right.