“Help me Obi-John Rakowski, you’re my only hope!”

      Desperate and running out of time, Princess Buster of Arizona finished her recording on the R2 unit and uttered a few final commands to her faithful droid. The droid spun away from the princess and took off towards their doomed vessel’s escape hatch.

      By this time, Princess Buster knew her fate was sealed. As a leader of the rebellion against the evil Galactic Empire, she and her crew were attempting to steal the Empire’s plans for the construction of a new “Cup Champion” space station capable of destroying entire leagues of planets. Unable to outrun the Team Destroyer starship of the evil Darth Pederson, henchman of the Emperor and master of the force, she was now faced with entrusting the plans to two droids and an old pothead.

      “I just hope that Swedish bastard does his job,” muttered Buster as she ran down a vacant corridor. “Oh…shit…”

      As everything turned to blackness, Buster saw the dark shape of Lord Pederson closing in on her.

      “Sean? Sean!”

      Sean, a farm boy from the planet of Detroit, emerged from his underground abode. “Yes, Aunt Jackie?”

      As an orphan, Sean Skywalker was raised on a farmstead by his Aunt Jackie and Uncle Bryan. They were simple, peace-loving folk who just wanted to live their sheltered lives, far away from the wars and playoffs going on around them.

      “Could you please help your Uncle Bryan, he’s trying to pick out some droids over at Ikea.”

      “Sure, Aunt Jackie,” replied Sean as he turned to walk towards the large blue and gold superstore.

      Ikea was run by the Jawas, a curious type of character, who were often very cheap and liked to cut corners wherever possible. As a result, they were based on the planet of Sweden, where they mass-produced 95% of the universe’s droids. After searching through several aisles of the Detroit Ikea, Sean found his Uncle Bryan looking at an assortment of R2 units, arguing with a Jawa salesman.

      As he approached his Uncle, Sean was startled by a flamboyant protocol droid beginning to introduce himself.

      “I am Mag-3PO, Human-Swedish relations. I am well-versed in several forms of communication, including Swedish Chef, Droidese, and my personal favorite, Angry Swenglish Email.”

      “That’s nice,” said Sean as he continued on his way. But the ambiguously gay droid pursued him.

      “I see that you are looking for an R2 unit. My brother happens to be such a droid. He is very well-built and is battle tested, so to speak. He would serve your purposes well.”

      Knowing that Uncle Bryan was also seeking a protocol droid, Sean thought it might be a good idea to buy the two brothers, as they would likely work well together. After some more negotiations, Bryan purchased the two Swedish droids, but not before surrendering two first round picks and Erik Johnson.

      When Bryan and Sean returned to the farm, the responsibility of cleaning the droids fell to Sean.

      “Master Sean, this is my brother, R2-Daniel,” said Mag-3PO. “We are most grateful to be in your care! Getting here has been quite the journey.”

      “I can see that,” replied Sean. “All these dents… it looks like someone was using this poor guy as a hockey net. If I can just bang this dent out…”

      The room was suddenly filled with a hologram of a scared little girl. “Help me Obi-John Rakowski, you’re my only hope!” said the girl.

      “Who is that?” asked Sean. “It looks like she took one too many slapshots to the face! I mean, I’ve seen ugly, but wow. She looks like the Emperor’s daughter!”

      “I’m not quite sure,” said Mag. “She was a passenger on our last flight, that is all I know.”

      “Beep-boop-beep-beep,” exclaimed R2-Daniel.

      “How rude,” said Mag. “Daniel says he the property of this Obi-John Rakowski. Sadly, it looks like you will have to wipe his memory banks.”

      “Son of a... Alright, I’ll take care of it in the morning,” said Sean. “For now, I’m off to bed.”

      The next morning, Sean awoke to Mag-3PO’s girlish screams.

      “He’s gone, he’s gone! He just kept babbling and said he must go to Anaheim!”

      “Who’s gone?” asked a drowsy Sean.

      “Daniel! R2-Daniel is gone!”

      “Well why the hell didn’t you stop him? You’re like twice his size! Shit, I have to do everything myself.” Sean was already growing weary of this droid’s wussiness, and was also beginning to fear that the droid was developing an attraction to him. “Get the cruiser ready, we’ll head towards Anaheim and get him back before Bryan and Jackie notice.”

      Sean and Mag-3PO found R2-Daniel about 15 miles off the farm on the road towards Anaheim. “You little bastard!” yelled Sean. “Do you realize what you could cost me by running off like this?”

      “Master, we should get back to the cruiser,” said Mag. “There are referees about.”

      “Mag’s right. Let’s go Daniel, get your ass into that cruiser. Oof!”

      Sean was knocked straight on his ass by a blow to the back of the head. Losing consciousness, he thought about his Aunt and Uncle and how angry they’d be when he returned without either droid.

      Sean came to with a throbbing headache in a musty old cave. He heard two voices coming from the other room; one was Mag-3PO, but the other he did not recognize. He approached the door with caution, and poked his head in.

      “Sean…” said the voice that he did not recognize. “Sean Skywalker.” Sean immediately realized why the cave was so hazy, as the figure was placing a bong on the ground. The man was older with gray hair and a gray beard, and wreaked of alcohol and weed.

      “You must be Obi-John Rakowski,” said Sean. “I thought all the stories were just myth… but apparently you are just as big a stoner as everyone says.”

      “Don’t be so quick to judge, young Skywalker. You would be getting just as high as I do if you had won the wars I’ve won. Two of them, in fact. I was a friend of your father’s… we fought together years ago.”

      Sean was startled by this, as he knew very little about his father. He was always told that his father died of sudden illness when he was just a baby boy.

      “You knew my father? What was he like?”

      “He was a brave man, a Jedi Master, like myself.”

      Thinking Obi-John must be stoned, Sean said “My father was no Jedi, he was a farmer.”

      “So your aunt and uncle would have you believe. But they say this only to protect you from the dangers of the Playoffs and the Cup Wars. Here, your father asked me to give this to you when the time was right.”

      Obi-John stood up and stumbled over to an old wooden wardrobe. Chuckling at his own ineptitude, he opened it and turned to Sean.

      “This…” started Obi-John, “This is a light saber. It is the greatest of all weapons, the weapon of a true Jedi. In time, it will be the only weapon you need. This light saber was mine, and now I give it to you. It is called Luongo.”

      Sean gazed in wonder at Luongo. It was an elegant weapon like anything he had ever seen, capable of deflecting all offenses launched against its owner. As he basked in its glory, R2-Daniel perked up. It was the hologram again, only this time, the entire message played.

      “Obi-John Rakowski, I am Princess Buster of Phoenix. You served my father in the Cup Wars. Together, we have won three Cups. Now, I must ask for your help yet again. This droid contains the secret plans of Darth Pederson to assemble a weapon capable of destroying entire leagues at his every whim. These plans much get to my father on Arizona. Help me Obi-John Rakowski, you’re my only hope!”

      Suddenly sober, Obi-John looked to Sean. “Man, that is one ugly bitch! Sean, you must come with me to Arizona. Lord Pederson will have tracked these droids to your home. Your aunt and uncle…”

      “Oh no, Aunt Jackie, Uncle Brian!” Sean raced out of the cave with Luongo and dashed towards the speeder.

      “Sean! Wait,” yelled Obi-John. “I’m coming, we’re out of Cheetos.”

      As Sean, Obi-John, and the droids approached the farmstead, they saw the smoke billowing. Sean already knew it was too late. Aunt Jackie and Uncle Bryan’s charred remains were all that were left of them, embracing one another even in death. Sean held back the tears as Obi-John comforted him. “Well Sean, it looks like they’ve finished 29th and 30th for the last time.”

      “Obi-John, I want to come with you to Arizona. I want to become a Jedi like my father, and use Luongo to avenge Bryan and Jackie.”

      “Well then,” said Obi-John, “we’ll need a ship. And a pizza…with extra cheese. And sausage.”

      “And beer,” added Sean. “Lots of beer.”

      “We will go to Mos Eisley, a wretched hive of scum and villainy. There, we will find our pilot, our ship, and our beer.”

      “If you’re looking for a pilot, you’ve come to the right place.” The man sitting across the table from Sean and Obi-John was scruffy looking, in his early middle-age. His companion, a Wookie, was tall, imposing, and above all, very hairy.

      “I am George Solo, captain of the Millennium Flame. This is my first mate, Drewbacca of Tampa Bay. We’ve got the ship you need.”

      Sean motioned to the side and whispered to Obi-John, “Are you sure we can trust this guy? He looks like an ex-con and that Drewbacca dude looks even worse.”

      “Huh?” said Obi-John. “Oh yeah they’re fine, I used to toke up with George back in the day. We go way back. Or was that Han Solo? Shit I can’t remember…anyway they look cool enough.”

      “Fellas,” said Obi-John aloud, “we’d be happy to tag along. We just can’t have any run-ins with the Empire, if you catch my drift.”

      “Well that will cost extra,” replied George.

      “I’ve got a few ounces that I may be willing to share,” winked Obi-John.

      Drewbacca growled his approval.

      “Ok Drewy.” George turned to Obi-John and smiled. “Docking Bay 420, meet us there in an hour.”

      When George arrived at the docking bay to prepare the Millennium Flame for departure, he saw a familiar slug waiting for him next to the ship.

      “Solo! Come out of there Solo!” bellowed Feduniak the Hut.

      “I’m right here, Feduniak.”

      “George, George. It seems as though you have a problem paying your debts.”

      “Well Feduniak, sometimes I can’t help it if one of my goalies retires and I have to come to you and your monopoly. I need some more time.”

      “I’ve waited long enough, Solo. Two million is a very reasonable price for an AHL goalie. Of course, if you don’t have the money, I could just take Mike Green off your hands…”

      “Relax Feduniak, I’ve got your money. I just got a job that will pay enough participation money to give you an extra 10%.”

      “20%, and not a penny less.”

      “Don’t get greedy Feduniak, 15%. I’ll have it for you next week.”

      “George, have I told you that you’re my favorite? 15% it is…otherwise Green will make a fine decoration for my wall.”

      “You’re a wonderful human being, Feduniak.”

      “George, what the hell is that?” asked Sean. “It looks about as fast you are on the ski mountain.”

      “Oh it is, maggot. It is.”

      Sean turned to Obi-John, who didn’t seem as concerned. “Obi-John, you call this a ship? How are we supposed to get to Arizona in this thing?”

      “First of all, that thing would make a hell of a bong. I’m not sure it’ll fly, but maybe it’ll make us fly?” Obi-John giggled.

      Before the debate could continue, gunshots sounded and laser beams filled Docking Bay 420. “Everyone into the ship!” screamed a suddenly valiant George. Sean, Obi-John, Drewy, and the Swedish droids did as they were told and got into the oversized bong. George was the last one and as he grabbed the controls to take off, Obi-John was already rolling the first joint.

      Obi-John turned to Sean. “Get ready, young padawan. We’re going on the journey of a lifetime.” Obi-John laughed, and passed the blunt to Sean.

      “Move along!” Princess Buster was unceremoniously being led down corridor after corridor in a seemingly endless starship.

      “I’m going as fast as I can, jeez,” said Buster. “I’m slow, I can’t help it.”

      “Indeed you are,” said a dark, menacing voice.

      “Darth Pederson,” started the princess, “I should have known it was you. I’d recognize your foul stench anywhere.”

      “Are you sure that’s me, Princess, or is that the stench of your Coyotes?”

      “Insult me all you will Pederson, but my planet is full of wonderful people like Prime Minister Modano, Archbishop Roloson, and General Tkachuk. And there is nothing you can do about that!”

      “We will see about that,” scowled Darth Pederson. “This station is the finest testament to Empire technology known to man. In a few moments, you will know the power of the nearly complete “Cup Champion.”

      On the viewscreen, an image of the planet Arizona came up on the display.

      “You see, Princess, this station has the ability to wipe out entire planets in a single blow. When complete, it will be able to destroy even the largest and most powerful of stars. Nothing will stand in its way! And now, the time has come to demonstrate its power and you Princess, are responsible for deciding the test subject.”

      “No!” squealed Buster. “You can’t, we are a peaceful people, Arizona will never see it coming!”

      “Admiral Heatley, fire on Arizona when ready.”

      And in just an instant, the planet of Arizona, Coyotes and all, were blown apart, scattering across the universe, screaming out for Princess Buster to rebuild it. The menacing laugh of Lord Pederson roared through the space station, sending chills up the former Princess’ weak spine.

…To be continued!