RED LEADER: Target's coming up!
Red Leader looks at his computer target readout screen. He then looks into his targeting device.
RED LEADER: Just hold them off for a few seconds.
Vader adjusts his control lever and dives on the X-wing fighters.
VADER: Close up formation.
The three TIE fighters move in formation across the Death Star surface.
RED LEADER: Almost there!
Red Leader lines up his target on the targeting device cross hairs.
Vader and his wingmen zoom down the trench. Vader rapidly approaches the two X-wings of Red Ten and Red Twelve. Vader's cockpit controls lock on to the X-wing, laser cannon flashes below the view of the front porthole. the X-wings show in the center of Vader's computer screen. Red Twelve's X-wing fighter is hit by Vader's laserfire, and it explodes into flames against the trench.
Red Ten works at his controls furiously, trying to avoid Vader's fighter behind him.
RED TEN: You'd better let her loose.
Red Leader is concentrating on his targeting device.
RED LEADER: Almost there!
Red Ten panics.
RED TEN: I can't hold them!
Vader and his wingmen whip through the trench in pursuit of the Rebel fighters. Vader cooly pushes the fire button on his control stick.
Darth Vader's well-aimed laserfire proves to be unavoidable, and strikes Red Ten's ship. Red Ten screams in anguish and pain. Red Ten's ship explodes and bursts into flames.
Grimly, Red Leader takes careful aim and watches his computer targeting device, which shows the target lined up in the cross hairs, and fires.
RED LEADER: It's away!
DEATH STAR: An armed Imperial stormtrooper is knocked to the floor from the attack explosion. Other troopers scurrying about the corridors are knocked against the wall and lose their balance. In the Massassi Outpost War Room,: Leia and the others stare at the computer screen.
RED NINE'S VOICE: (over speaker) It's a hit!
RED LEADER: (over speaker) Negative.
Red Leader looks back at the receding Death Star. Tiny explosions are visible in the distance.
RED LEADER: Negative! It didn't go in. It just impacted on the surface.
Darth Vader peels off in pursuit as Red Leader's X-wing passes the Death Star horizon. Vader swings his ship around for the next kill.
LUKE: (over headset) Red Leader, we're right above you. Turn to point...
Luke tries to spot Red Leader. He looks down at the Death Star surface.
LUKE: ...oh-five; we'll cover for you.
RED LEADER: (over headset) Stay there...
A wary Red Leader looks about nervously.
RED LEADER: ...I just lost my starboard engine.
Luke looks excitedly toward Red Leader's X-wing.
RED LEADER: (over headset) Get set to make your attack run.
Vader's gloved hands make contact with the control sticks, and he presses their firing buttons. Red Leader fights to gain control of his ship. Laserbolts are flung from Vader's TIE fighter, connecting with Red Leader's Rebel X-wing fighter. Red Leader buys it, creating a tremendous explosion far below. He screams and is destroyed. Luke looks out the window of his X-wing at the explosion far below. For the first time, he feels the helplessness of his situation.
DEATH STAR: Grand Moff Tarkin casts a sinister eye at the computer screen.
INTERCOM VOICE: Rebel base, one minute and closing.
MASSASSI OUTPOST - WAR ROOM: Dodonna and Princess Leia, with Threepio beside them, listen intently to the talk between the pilots. The room is grim after Red Leader's death. Princess Leia nervously paces the room.
LUKE: (over speaker) Biggs, Wedge, let's close it up. We're going in. We're going in full throttle. That ought to keep those fighters off our backs.
WEDGE: Right with you, boss.
The two X-wings peel off against a background of stars and dive toward the Death Star.
BIGGS: Luke, at that speed will you be able to pull out in time?
LUKE: It'll be just like Beggar's Canyon back home.
The three X-wings move in, unleashing a barrage of laserfire. Laserbolts are returned from the Death Star. Luke's lifelong friend struggles with his controls.
BIGGS: We'll stay back far enough to cover you.
Flak and laserbolts flash outside Luke's cockpit window.
WEDGE: (over headset) My scope shows the tower, but I can't see the exhaust port! Are you sure the computer can hit it?
GUN EMPLACEMENTS: The Death Star laser cannon slowly rotates as it shoots laserbolts. Luke looks around for the Imperial TIE fighters. He thinks for a moment and then moves his targeting device into position.
LUKE: Watch yourself! Increase speed full throttle!
Wedge looks excitedly about for any sign of the TIE fighters.
WEDGE: What about the tower?
LUKE: You worry about those fighters! I'll worry about the tower!
Luke's X-wing streaks through the trench, firing lasers. Luke breaks into a nervous sweat as the laserfire is returned, knicking one of his wings close to the engine.
LUKE: (to Artoo) Artoo...that, that stabilizer's broken loose again! See if you can't lock it down!
Artoo works to repair the damages. The canyon wall rushes by in the background, making his delicate task seem even more precarious. Two laser cannons are firing on the Rebel fighters.
Wedge looks up and sees the TIE ships.
WEDGE: Fighters coming in, point three!
Luke's targeting device marks off the distance to the target. Vader and his wingmen zoom closer.