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"This is how it must be. The Empire became this...ugly, inelegant machine. Crude and inefficient. We needed to be broken into pieces. We needed to get rid of those who want to see that old machine churning ineluctably forward. It's time for something better. Something new. An Empire worthy of the galaxy it will rule."
―Gallius Rax, to Rae Sloane[src]

Gallius Rax was a human male officer from the planet Jakku who served the Galactic Empire during the reign of Emperor Sheev Palpatine. At the time of Palpatine's death in 4 ABY, Rax had risen in the military ranks and became Fleet Admiral of the Imperial Navy. The Super Star Destroyer Ravager served as his flagship.

Following the Emperor's demise Rax received posthumous instructions to initiate the Contingency; an emergency directive to destroy the Empire for which Palpatine intended Rax to carry out. Using the codename Operator, he secretly fed information to the New Republic regarding vulnerable Imperial routes and planetary officials who were willing to defect to the Republic. He also lured surviving Imperial leaders to Akiva where the Republic Starfleet disrupted the emergency summit with the secret aid of Rax. As a result, the members of the short-lived Imperial Future Council were either captured or killed by the Republic.

Despite his commitment to fulfilling the Contingency's objective, Rax sought to replace the Empire with a new regime that was—in his view—worthy of the galaxy it would rule. As such, he cultivated a partnership with Admiral Rae Sloane, who, with Rax's support, became Grand Admiral of the Empire. Impressed by Sloane's actions at Akiva, Rax promoted her as the public face of the Empire but also intended to rule through Sloane as the head of an advisory group known as the Shadow Council. Their alliance was short-lived, however. Sloane, who believed that the Empire stood for order, disagreed with Rax's tactics such as his plot to attack Chandrila, the seat of the New Republic Senate, under the pretense of negotiating for peace. They became enemies as a result of Rax's assassination attempt against her; and although Sloane survived the betrayal of her aide, Adea Rite, Rax used the grand admiral's absence to consolidate his power as the self-anointed Counselor to the Empire. With Grand Vizier Mas Amedda a virtual prisoner in the Imperial Palace on Coruscant, Counselor Rax effectively ruled the Empire as emperor in all but name.

Prior to the final battle of the Galactic Civil War, Rax gathered the remnants of the Imperial Military and stationed them on his homeworld of Jakku. When the forces of the New Republic invaded the planet, Rax sought to destroy Jakku along with both sides of the conflict by using the Observatory to destabilize the planetary core. However, he was confronted and killed by Sloane before the facility could complete its purpose. In his last moments, the dying counselor urged Sloane to venture into the Unknown Regions of space where the Empire could begin anew.

BiographyEdit

Early lifeEdit

Jakku - full - SW Poe Dameron Flight Log

Gallius Rax hailed from Jakku, where he met Sheev Palpatine.

A male[1] human,[4] Gallius Rax was born on the desert planet Jakku[1] in or around the year 42 BBY.[2] An orphan, he spent the first twelve years of his life in slavery and went by the nickname "Galli." He eventually stowed away onboard the Imperialis in an attempt to escape Jakku, after seeing Adviser Yupe Tashu order a droid to begin excavating a location on the Plaintive Hand plateau. During the trip, Sheev Palpatine sensed his presence and offered Rax two choices: to either end his life quickly, or to accept the destiny Palpatine sensed for him. Choosing the latter option, Palpatine took him on as a protégé and gave him his first task: to return to Jakku to guard the excavation site by any means necessary and to monitor the droids doing the excavating. Before returning young Gallius to Jakku, Palpatine stated that they would be on a first-name basis, introducing himself as Sheev, and stating that "an Emperor must have friends, after all."[1]

Imperial serviceEdit

Career advancementEdit

Essentially a ghost until two decades before the Battle of Jakku, his first record of service with the Galactic Empire was in 15 BBY, appearing on the Imperial Navy roster at the age 20 with the rank of commander. This ranking was considered by many to be abnormally high, considering his lack of history with the Imperial Military. His first assignment was to the Galactic Empire's Naval Intelligence Agency, stationed primarily in the Outer Rim. His reports, designated "Eyes Only" for Imperial Security Bureau agent and eventually NIA Deputy Director Wullf Yularen, bypassed Vice Admirals Terrinald Screed and Dodd Rancit in the chain of command. Following the destruction of the first Death Star and the death of Yularen, his reports were sent directly to Emperor Palpatine himself.[1]

During his service, he was awarded the title of Hero of the Galactic Empire, as well as the Nova Star, the Medal of Service, the Galactic War on Insurgency medal, the Gilded Sun, and the Emperor's Will medal, though the information concerning the reason he was awarded the medals, or when, remained unlisted in Imperial records well into 5 ABY.[1]

In 4 ABY, shortly before the Battle of Endor, Rax was summoned to Emperor Palpatine's throne room on board the second Death Star, and was informed by the Emperor of a shatterpoint having been sensed. Palpatine then commanded Rax to move the Ravager to the Vulpinus Nebula.

Rax went on to serve in the Galactic Empire's Navy,[5], eventually attaining the rank of Fleet Admiral,[1] and was stationed aboard the Super Star Destroyer Ravager.[1] In the aftermath of the Battle of Endor,[5] which saw the deaths of Emperor Sheev Palpatine, Darth Vader, and the destruction of both the Death Star II and the Executor,[6] Rax set to work on building a stronger, more efficient Empire.[5]

The Akivan purgeEdit

Grand Admiral Sloane

Admiral Rae Sloane came into Rax's service after the Battle of Endor.

Knowing that those whose loyalty to the Empire wavered had no place in a new Empire, Rax took on the codename the "Operator," feeding intelligence to the fledgling New Republic on vulnerable Imperial routes and galactic leaders who would likely secede from the Empire and join the Republic. At some point, he came into contact with Imperial admiral Rae Sloane,[5] the officer who took command of the Imperial fleet during the Battle of Endor after the demise of the Imperial leadership there and ordered the retreat to the Annaj system.[7]

Rax sent Sloane to the planet Akiva, where an emergency summit among several remaining Imperial leaders was to be held. Sloane kept Rax's involvement in arranging the summit a secret from the others, telling Moff Valco Pandion that he was no longer living. Sloane and the other Imperials–Moff Pandion, General Jylia Shale, Adviser Yupe Tashu, and the financier Arsin Crassus–formed the Imperial Future Council, which sought to preserve the fragmenting Empire.[5]

Under the guise of the Operator, Rax contacted the New Republic and informed them of the Imperial presence at Akiva, prompting Republic Fleet Admiral Gial Ackbar to dispatch a probe droid to the planet to investigate. Once the probe had reached Akiva, the Operator spoke with Ackbar and Ensign Deltura, the Republic officer responsible for launching the probe, via hologram. After learning from the droid that no starships were detected going in or out of Akiva, the Operator told Deltura to have the probe ping the comm relays on the planet. Upon receiving no response, the Operator informed Ackbar that this was an Imperial trick, and that the Empire must have instituted a planetary blockade and hidden their ships. The Operator asked the Mon Calamari admiral if he would act on this information, but received no reply, and had his feed cut by the admiral.[5]

After receiving a message from Republic captain Wedge Antilles, who was being held captive by the Empire on Akiva, Ackbar ordered Commander Kyrsta Agate to take a small fleet to the planet and engage Imperial forces there. A battle ensued in the planet's orbit, resulting in the destruction of two Star Destroyers, the death of Moff Pandion and Crassus, and the capture of General Shale and Adviser Tashu. Admiral Sloane, who commanded the Imperial forces during the battle, managed to escape aboard Pandion's Destroyer, the Vanquish, and rendezvoused with Rax in the Vulpinus Nebula. Aboard the Ravager, Sloane met with Admiral Rax and asked him about the Republic transmissions sent from his ship. Admiral Rax told her that forcing the Republic and Empire to engage over Akiva had been a test, proving that Sloane was one of his "best and brightest." The other IFC members had failed this test, and as a result were no longer a burden to the admiral. After informing Sloane of his plans for a new Empire, he sent her on her way as he continued thinking to himself.[5]

Puppet masterEdit

"It is a symbol of our indolence and torpidity. It is the moldering core of our overripe fruit and I wish to cut away such rot so as to preserve our sweet remains and of course the seeds within."
―Fleet Admiral Gallius Rax[src]

Following the events on Akiva, Fleet Admiral Gallius Rax arranged for Sloane to be promoted to Grand Admiral. While Grand Admiral Sloane served as the public face of the Empire, Rax ruled from behind the scenes while posing as her lower-ranking adviser aboard the Ravager. In addition, Rax arranged for Sloane's attache Adea Rite to be rescued from New Republic custody. He cultivated Adea as his lover and used her to spy and monitor Sloane's movements. Rax maintained an opulent office aboard the Ravager that included an aquarium full of diasphanous water creatures, weapons, ornate tapestry, and a holomap of the galaxy.[1]

After Sloane had given a propaganda broadcast, Rax summoned the Grand Admiral for a meeting to discuss his plan to establish a Shadow Council and to rescue Commandant Brendol Hux from the besieged world of Arkanis. After talking about opera and propaganda, Rax talked about creating a brain trust in order to promote the resurgence of a "stronger, leaner"' Empire. Rax identified Hux as a prospective member for this Shadow Council and ordered Sloane to rescue Hux and his illegitimate son Armitage Hux. Rax also advocated a breeding program to produce children in order to revitalize the ranks of the Empire. Rax's cult-like ideas and remark about "fact and truth being separate things" unnerved Sloane, who disagreed with his agenda.[1]

Putting Rax's orders into action, Sloane ordered Adea to hire the bounty hunter Mercurial Swift to rescue Commandant Hux and his son. Sloane then departed on a secret mission to Coruscant, where she discovered that Rax had withheld the existence of a second Super Star Destroyer and a photo showing a young Rax and several Imperial officials on a desert world. Despite Sloane's efforts to maintain secrecy, Admiral Rax learned about her mission through the auspices of Adea Rite.[1]

Several days later, Grand Admiral Sloane convened an inaugural dinner meeting for the Shadow Council under Rax's orders. When the Imperial propagandist Ferric Obdur suggested that the Empire promote the narrative that they were the underdog who had been kicked out by a deadbeat father, Rax applauded Obdur's remarks and revealed himself to the Shadow Council. Rax told the delegates that he had selected them because of their ideas and talents. Rax told the Shadow Council that they would spearhead the resurgence of the Empire.[1]

When Commandant Hux asked about how the Empire would rejuvenate its depleted resources, Rax informed his guests that his fleet in the Vulpinus Nebula was not the only Imperial remnant. In addition, Rax commanded other fleets in the Almagest, the Recluse's Nebula, the Queluhan Nebula, the Ro-Loo Triangle, and the Inamorata which consisted of hundreds of Star Destroyers and thousands of smaller craft. Rax and Sloane claimed that they had withheld this information from other Imperial military commanders since they did not know who they could trust. When Borrum told Rax that they needed more boots and armor on the ground, Rax reassured them that the Empire still controlled three factory worlds in the Outer Rim—Zhadalene, Korrus, and Belladoon—which were churning out more material for the Imperial war machine.[1]

At that point, Adea Rite entered the room to inform Sloane about the loss of the Star Destroyer Scythe. Sloane also uncovered evidence that Rax had facilitated the Star Destroyer's destruction by blocking all incoming messages from the Scythe. Rax viewed the ship's Commander Valent as a rival and was willing to sacrifice him in order to unify the remnants of the Empire. Later, Rax hosted Adea in his personal quarters. He reassured the young attache that Admiral Sloane would come around and then proceeded to kiss and embrace her.[1]

Smoke and mirrorsEdit

Later, Fleet Admiral Rax was visiting his private garden in the upper echelons of the Ravager when he was visited by Grand Admiral Sloane. Due to the blast-glass enclosure, Rax realized that Sloane had brought a blaster and had come to kill him. When Rax asked Sloane if she despised him, Sloane claimed that she respected him. Rax responded that she could respect and despise him at the same time. He admitted that he respected the late Emperor Palpatine but saw him as a monster and one who made mistakes.[1]

Rax then revealed to Sloane that he was aware of her visit to Grand Vizier Mas Amedda on Coruscant and her investigation into his background. Knowing that she had come to kill him, Rax told Sloane to relent. He then told her about his secret plan to attack Chandrila, the capital of the New Republic. When Sloane warned that people would eventually realize that he was the puppet-master controlling her from behind her scenes, Rax offered to support her candidacy as Emperor and to serve as her adviser.[1]

Rax refused to tell Sloane who he was but instead told her about his plan to attack Chandrila. When Sloane queried about the details of the attack, he was evasive and told her that the "pieces were almost in place." When Sloane demanded to know more, he told her to trust him and reassured her that she was a vital resource. While Sloane did not trust Rax, she agreed to keep their talk confidential and to be ready when the time came.[1]

Later, Rax countermanded Sloane's orders to Vice Admiral Urian Orlan to send a team to investigate the unauthorized repair trip by two suspicious vessels to Ashmead's Lock prison on the planet Kashyyyk. Rax told Sloane to call Orlan back and tell him that the Empire did approve the repairs on the prison. When Sloane responded that they have not given such orders, Rax recognized the two ships as belonging to Norra Wexley's team of Imperial hunters and the rebel leader Han Solo. Concealing his plans, Rax rationalized his actions on the grounds that the Empire had to appear weak. Sloane reluctantly complied with Rax's orders but send a secret ally to the Kashyyyk system on her behalf.[1]

Rax's secret plan to attack Chandrila involved using the rebel prisoners held at Ashmead's Lock. Under Rax's orders, the prisoners had been fitted with inorganic bio-chips which would turn them into unwilling assassins when he had broadcast an order. Rax also operated a network of spies throughout the galaxy. One of his Bith agents on the planet Irudiru reported that the rebel smuggler Han Solo had teamed up with a group of New Republic operatives led by Norra Wexley, whose husband was imprisoned inside Ashmead's Lock. Rax allowed Solo and Norra's team to raid the prison and rescue the inmates. The prisoners were then flown to Chandrila, allowing for the next stage of Rax's plan to proceed.[1]

Rax had another agent on Chandrila who turned out be the New Republic Senate Guard Windom Traducier, who shared Rax's views that the New Republic would only bring chaos to the galaxy. After learning that Chancellor Mon Mothma was organizing a Liberation Day celebration to showcase the liberated prisoners, Traducier installed a transponder on the roof of the Hanna City opera house. He used the transponder to summon the assassins and then armed them with concealed blasters. Rax and Traducier planned to use the assassins to kill Chancellor Mothma and the New Republic military and political leadership with one stroke.[1]

Monmothma

Rax had Admiral Sloane contact Chancellor Mon Mothma and other New Republic leaders as part of a trap for the Republic's leadership.

Later, Rax instructed Sloane to contact Chancellor Mothma, Fleet Admiral Ackbar, and Princess Leia Organa with a faux offer to discuss peace with the New Republic. Grand Admiral Sloane agreed to travel to Chandrila personally to conduct peace talks with Chancellor Mothma under the auspices of the Galactic Senate, the New Republic's legislative body. The talks were timed to take place after the Liberation Day celebration in Hanna City. On the eve of the mission to Chandrila, Rax reassured the Grand Admiral that she would be safe during the attack. However, Sloane rightfully suspected that the Fleet Admiral was setting a trap or a test for her.[1]

Rax's coupEdit

"I only serve Palpatine.
Emperor Rax serves Palpatine, too. Now go.
Yes. Yes. It makes sense. It's part of a plan, isn't it? A plan I couldn't see? Sidious always had a plan
"
―Yupe Tashu and Windom Traducier[src]

While safely aboard the Ravager, Fleet Admiral Rax watched the Liberation Day proceedings on the HoloNet. Since the New Republic had taken over the HoloNet, they were using it to broadcast the Liberation Day festivities with the hope of enticing more worlds to join the New Republic. As the New Republic officials shepherded the liberated prisoners and their families onto a stage, Rax ordered Grand Moff Rannd to prepare the Imperial fleets to travel to a series of coordinates, which turned out to be the planet Jakku. Rax also convened a meeting of the Shadow Council.[1]

Meanwhile on Chandrila, Rax's unwilling assassins suddenly attacked their New Republic hosts, wounding several New Republic officials including Chancellor Mothma and Commodore Kyrsta Agate. Several New Republic officials including General Crix Madine and Advisor Hostis Ij were rumored to have been killed. However, other key officials including Princess Leia, Captain Wedge Antilles, and Admiral Ackbar escaped the attack since they were offworld attending to the liberation of the Wookiee homeworld of Kashyyyk.[1]

Despite demoralizing the New Republic populace and numerous worlds considering joining them, Grand Admiral Sloane turned against Gallius Rax. After realizing that Rax's attack on Chandrila involved using mind-controlled prisoners, Sloane rejected Rax's methods as akin to the tactics of the rebels that she despised. When Sloane publicly denounced Rax and ordered her crew to return with her to arrest him, Adea attacked the Grand Admiral and tried to assassinate her. However, Sloane managed to kill her and escaped into hyperspace on a stolen cargo freighter. She subsequently teamed up with the former Ashmead's Lock prisoner Brentin to hunt down and kill Rax. While during the attack, Traducier freed Tashu from prison and told him that Gallius Rax was Emperor and that he served the late Emperor Sheev Palpatine. Tashu praised Sidious for having a plan before making his escape.[1]

Battle of Jakku

Rax's machinations set the stage for the Battle of Jakku.

While traveling through hyperspace, Gallius Rax informed the Shadow Council that Sloane had been lost on Chandrila. However, he vowed that the Empire would make every effort to get her back from the clutches of the New Republic. In the Grand Admiral's absence, Rax offered to serve as the Counselor to the Empire until Sloane returned to them and said he wasn't worthy of the title of Emperor to the Council. When Borrum responded that Counselor was an unprecedented title, Rax reassured him that his position was only temporary. When Borrum asked why they were traveling to the barren world of Jakku, Rax responded that he would test the mettle of his new armada on that planet away from the prying eyes of the New Republic. In secret, Rax planned to use the upcoming showdown to eliminate the other Council members with the exception of Brendol Hux, who was essential to his plans.[1]

Personality and traitsEdit

Gallius Rax was known to have a strong appreciation for classical music, enjoying such pieces as the "Sestina of Imperator Vex." He was intelligent, calculating, and manipulative, as evidenced by orchestrating the battle of Akiva.[5] Growing up on the barren and desolate world of Jakku, Rax longed to escape offworld for greener worlds. Seeking to escape a life of slavery and poverty, Rax stowed aboard a ship that belonged to Emperor Palpatine. The Emperor offered him an education and better life in return for guarding a secret excavation site on Jakku.[1]

Due to his personal connection to the Emperor, Rax rose rapidly through the ranks of the Imperial Navy to become a Fleet Admiral. Rax was diligent and resolute in serving his benefactor. While Rax admired Sheev Palpatine, he was intelligent and perceptive enough to recognize that the Emperor was a monster and tyrant. Following the Battle of Endor, Rax dedicated his life to rebuilding the tattered remnants of the Empire. In the process, Rax was willing to sacrifice many lives and resources to eliminate those whom he deemed as rivals including Grand Moff Valco Pandion, Commander Valent, and General Jylia Shale.[1]

While Rax was highly cultured and appreciated art, music, and kept an aquarium full of exotic fish, Rax was ruthless towards other people including his foes and allies. As part of a long-term contingency plan, Rax was willing to forcibly insert inorganic bio-chips into the bodies of rebel prisoners held at Ashmead's Lock. These prisoners were later used in an ingenious plot to assassinate the New Republic political and military leadership on Chandrila, capital of the New Republic. Rax hoped to demoralize the New Republic while at the same time provoking a fight with the rival government, the successor to the Rebel Alliance.[1]

Gallius Rax recognized that the New Republic held a political and military advantage over the Empire. In response, Rax set in stage a long-term plan to revitalize the Empire by instituting a breeding program, creating a brain trust called the Shadow Council, and promoting the propaganda narrative that the Empire was the underdog. In public, Rax cultivated the image of a selfless adviser who was dedicated to promoting the survival of the Empire. However, this public image concealed his ambition to rule the Empire from behind the scenes. While Rax presented himself as a charismatic adviser, he was known to be evasive and secretive; a trait that put him at odds with Grand Admiral Rae Sloane.[1]

Rax's ambitions led him to engineer a plot to eliminate Grand Admiral Sloane by sending her on a faux diplomatic mission to Chandrila which coincided with the attack on Chandrila. While Rax had wanted to test the loyalty and resolve of the Grand Admiral, this move only turned Sloane against him. In her absence, Rax took the opportunity to seize leadership of the Shadow Council as Counselor to the Empire. While Rax wore the attire of a Fleet Admiral in public, he wore a long crimson robe in private.[1]

Behind the scenesEdit

Gallius Rax first appeared as the unidentified Fleet Admiral in Chuck Wendig's 2015 novel Aftermath. His role and backstory was expanded in the novel's 2016 sequel Aftermath: Life Debt.

AppearancesEdit

SourcesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 1.25 1.26 1.27 1.28 1.29 1.30 1.31 1.32 1.33 1.34 1.35 1.36 1.37 1.38 1.39 Aftermath: Life Debt
  2. 2.0 2.1 According to Aftermath: Life Debt, Rax's first journey out of Jakku happened when he was 12 years old. Aftermath: Empire's End then confirmed that 10 years after that, Rax left Jakku for good. Since that event took place 25 years before the book's present, which is set in 5 ABY, Rax must have been born in or around 42 BBY.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Aftermath: Empire's End
  4. 4.0 4.1 According to TwitterLogo @ChuckWendig (Chuck Wendig) on Twitter. “@lelalmekha Yes!”, All Imperial officers seen or mentioned in Aftermath: Life Debt are human.
  5. 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 Aftermath
  6. Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi
  7. "The Levers of Power"—The Rise of the Empire
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