Slowing his hip, Han coursed into the cave entrance and through a large tunnel, which he hoped would make the ideal hiding place. He took a deep breath as his ship was promptly devoured by the cave's shadows.

  A tiny X-wing was approaching the atmosphere of the Dagobah planet.

  As he neared the planet, Luke Skywalker was able to glimpse a portion of its curved surface through a heavy cover of thick clouds. The planet was uncharted and virtually unknown. Somehow Luke had made his way there, though he wasn't certain whether it was his hand along that had guided his ship into this unexplored sector of space.

  Artoo-Detoo, riding in the back of Luke's X-wing, scanned the passing stars, then addressed his remarks to Luke via the computer scope.

  Luke read the viewscreen interpreter. "Yes, that's Dagobah, Artoo," he answered the little robot, then glanced out the cockpit window as the fighter ship began to descend toward the planet's surface. "Looks a little grim, doesn't it?" Artoo beeped, attempting for one last time to get his master back on a more sensible course.

  "No," Luke replied, "I don't want to change my mind about this." He checked the ship's monitors and began to feel a bit nervous. "I'm not picking up any cities or technology. Massive life-form readings, though. There's something alive down there." Artoo was worried, too, and that was translated as an apprehensive inquiry.

  "Yes, I'm sure it's perfectly safe for droids. Will you take it easy?" Luke was beginning to get annoyed. "We'll just have to see what happens." He heard a pathetic electronic whimper from the rear of the cockpit.

  "Don't worry!" the X-wing sailed through the twilight halo separating pitch black space from the planet's surface. Luke took a deep breath, then plunged his craft into the white blanket of mists.

  He couldn't see a thing. His vision was entirely obstructed by the dense whiteness pressing against the canopy windows of his ship. His only choice was to control his X-wing solely by instruments. But the scopes weren't registering anything, even as Luke flew ever nearer to the planet. Desperately, he worked his controls, no longer able to discern even so much as his altitude.

  When an alarm began to buzz, Artoo joined its clarion call with his own frantic series of whistles and beeps.