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- "We have to be perfect."
The Gloom Walkers was a unit in the Sith army during the New Sith Wars in the years leading up to the Seventh Battle of Ruusan. The Gloom Walkers were commanded by Lieutenant Ulabore. During the New Sith Wars, the Gloom Walkers went from an expendable front-line unit to an elite group reserved for important and difficult missions due to a high success rate, which was largely due to the efforts of one of their troopers, Sergeant Dessel. Dessel was a Force-sensitive, and his latent Force abilities guided them to many victories.
From the years 1003 BBY to 1002 BBY, the unit participated in scores of battles, including ones on Kashyyyk, Trandosha, and Phaseera. In 1002 BBY, the unit fought in the Battle of Phaseera, where Dessel staged a mutiny, knocking out Ulabore and taking command of the unit. Dessel led the Gloom Walkers to capture a critical Republic outpost, where he killed a large number of Republic soldiers even after being blinded by a flash canister. His incredible feats during the battle were reported to the Brotherhood of Darkness, who took him away for training in the dark side of the Force. Afterward, the trooper Lucia killed Ulabore during a skirmish on Alaris Prime in revenge for the arrest of Dessel.
Battle of KashyyykEdit
The Gloom Walkers, under the command of Lieutenant Ulabore, was one of many military units in the Sith army during the New Sith Wars against the Galactic Republic. In the year 1003 BBY, the unit welcomed two new members—a former cortosis miner named Dessel and Adanar, who were placed in the unit on the same day. Over that next year, the Gloom Walkers were in scores of battles on half a dozen worlds, earning them a reputation as an elite unit. Dessel and Adanar saw their first action with the Gloom Walkers in the battle of Kashyyyk, where the Sith tried to secure a foothold in the Mid Rim by invading the Kashyyyk system. The Republic forces were firmly entrenched within the great forests of the planet, and the battle turned into a war of attrition fought among the branches of the wroshyr trees. The Sith troopers, unused to fighting in such heavy foliage, were annihilated by the Republic soldiers and their native Wookiee guides.
The Gloom Walkers were part of the second wave of reinforcements. During the battle, they were separated from the main lines of battle, cut off from the rest of the Sith army. Lieutenant Ulabore panicked and had no idea what to do to keep his unit alive without direct orders while alone and surrounded by enemies. Dessel was there to save his unit, being able to somehow sense where the enemy was even when he could not see them, and helped the Gloom Walkers avoid Republic traps and ambushes as they worked their way back to the main force. The march back to the rest of the Sith army took three days and nights, and several members lost their lives during countless clashes with the Republic forces. Upon returning to the main force, their story became a rallying point for the rest of the Sith army and raised morale that had become dangerously low. The Sith eventually won the battle and captured Kashyyyk, and Ulabore was given a special commendation as the unit's commander, although he failed to mention that it was Dessel who was responsible for leading the Gloom Walkers back to the main force. However, Ulabore promoted Dessel to the rank of sergeant.
Battle of HsskhorEdit
- "You've got a bad feeling, don't you? This is Hsskhor all over again!"
After the battle of Kashyyyk, the surviving Republic soldiers fled to the neighboring world of Trandosha, and twenty units of Sith troopers, including the Gloom Walkers, were sent in pursuit. They caught up to the Republic survivors in the desert plains outside of the city of Hsskhor, and the Battle of Hsskhor ensued. After a day of savage fighting that had left many dead on both sides, the Republic and Sith forces retreated to opposite ends of the battlefield to regroup. However, the native reptilian Trandoshans struck several hours later. As the Trandoshans were not allied on either side of the New Sith Wars, they attacked both sides, using their ability to see into the infrared spectrum to fight in the pitch-black night. Both the Sith and Republic soldiers, including the Gloom Walkers, were caught completely off-guard, and by the end of the night nearly half of the Sith troops had been killed. In retaliation, Sith reinforcements were sent in from Kashyyyk. The Trandoshans and the Republic forces were overwhelmed in less than a week, with many of the Trandoshans giving up on defending their homes, switching sides and fighting with the Sith. In the end, the city of Hsskhor was sacked and razed to the ground.
Battle of PhaseeraEdit
- "It's a suicide mission!"
- ―Unidentified Gloom Walker
By 1002 BBY, the Gloom Walkers had turned from one of a thousand expendable front-line units into an elite group reserved only for critical missions. That year, they participated in an attack on the Republic manufacturing world of Phaseera. Upon landing on the planet, the Gloom Walkers were tasked with eliminating a Republic outpost; its elimination would allow the rest of the Sith army to launch a surprise attack on the Republic base camp. Lieutenant Ulabore believed that the Gloom Walkers' mission would be easy, which relaxed the troopers as they waited for their orders. However, Dessel had a bad feeling about the battle to come, much like he had felt before the near-disaster at Hsskhor. Eventually, Ulabore returned with their orders—they were to hit the outpost in one hour. This was met by shock and outrage from the soldiers, one of whom shouted out that it was a suicide mission. Dessel reasoned that the outpost's three repulsorcraft equipped with heavy-repeating flash cannons would mow them down from the sky if they tried to take the outpost during the day. Ulabore refused to listen to the Gloom Walkers' protests, and Dessel simply punched Ulabore in the jaw, knocking him out, and took over command of the unit. Dessel ordered the communications officer to tell the Sith headquarters that their mission was complete so they could start moving the main force into position, giving the Gloom Walkers two hours to accomplish their objective.
After knocking out Lieutenant Ulabore, Dessel addressed the Gloom Walkers, stating that anyone who followed him from there on in could face a court-martial and if any of them felt they could not follow him after what he did he would surrender command to Adanar. However, the Gloom Walkers voted to stay under his command. Under the cover of night, the Gloom Walkers moved silently through Phaseera's jungle until they had it surrounded, splitting into three squads on three sides of the outpost. Once they were in position, they activated their interference boxes, jamming all transmissions within their perimeter. However, they ran into an unexpected problem; although the repulsorcraft were grounded, each of them still contained a soldier operating the flash cannons. Dessel proposed that Lucia, one of the unit's best shots, snipe the three gunners in succession, but the idea was rejected as impossible. Frustrated and acting on instinct, Dessel shot two of the gunners, but was blinded by a flash canister.
Incredibly, Dessel was still able to see even after being blinded, and quickly killed all the soldiers manning the gunships. Three hours later, the outpost had been taken, with nine Gloom Walker casualties. Dessel left Adanar and a small contingent to hold the outpost, and he and the rest of the Gloom Walkers returned to their camp to find Ulabore, by now fully conscious, accompanied by a dozen Sith enforcers. The enforcers took Dessel to be court-martialed, but before he could be put on trial, he was taken away to the Sith academy on Korriban, his Force-sensitivity having been recognized. Indeed, his connection to the Force had allowed him to lead the Gloom Walkers back on Kashyyyk and to kill the soldiers at the outpost. Eventually, Dessel became Darth Bane, one of the most influential Dark Lords of the Sith in galactic history.
However, Dessel's arrest disturbed many troopers of the unit, especially Lucia. A month later, as the Gloom Walkers were deployed to Alaris Prime, they stumbled into a Republic ambush—something Lucia knew would never have happened had Dessel still been with them. During the brief ensuing skirmish, Lucia betrayed and killed Ulabore, shooting him in the back, in revenge for the arrest of Dessel, as she believed the sergeant had been court-martialed and killed. The Gloom Walkers quickly defeated the Republic troops and approved of Lucia's actions; they never reported her betrayal, and Ulabore was registered as killed in action.
- "Quit braying like a bantha cut off from its herd! You have your orders, now follow them! Or do you want to see what happens to soldiers who defy their superior officers?"
Lieutenant Ulabore was the official leader of the Gloom Walkers and won much praise and accolades from his superiors for the unit's success, despite the fact that the Gloom Walkers' success was due more to Dessel's leadership than Ulabore's. Ulabore was blindly loyal to the Brotherhood of Darkness, the commanding force of the Sith army, and was afraid of going against their wishes. He was a cowardly and ineffective leader, and panicked when cut off from the main force on Kashyyyk which caused Dessel to take over. His troops openly mocked him, knowing that Dessel was really the one in charge. Despite Dessel's distinguished service in the Gloom Walkers, Ulabore still talked down to him and treated him and the other troops as inferior. Ulabore's fear of disobeying his superiors was displayed during the Battle of Phaseera, when he refused to break the orders given to him, despite the fact that it was a suicide mission. Ultimately, Dessel forcibly removed him of command and completed their objective. Ulabore's arrest of Dessel caused the other members of the Gloom Walkers to resent him, and eventually led to Lucia betraying and killing him on Alaris Prime.
- "What I've done here is mutiny."
Dessel, a former cortosis miner from the planet Apatros, joined the Sith army and was placed in the Gloom Walkers unit on the same day as fellow trooper Adanar. Dessel was a Force-sensitive, a trait that helped the unit in several missions; in the Battle of Kashyyyk, he was able to sense and avoid Republic traps and ambushes while leading the Gloom Walkers back to the main force, and on Phaseera he was able to kill nine Republic soldiers even after being blinded by a flash canister. Although Ulabore took full credit for the events on Kashyyyk, he promoted Dessel to sergeant. Dessel was widely regarded as the true leader of the Gloom Walkers, and all the other members listened to him instead of Ulabore. During the Battle of Phaseera, Dessel became fed up with Ulabore's ineffective leadership and knocked him out, taking over command and leading the Gloom Walkers to complete their objective. His seemingly impossible feats during the battle were reported by Lucia to the Brotherhood of Darkness, and he was taken away for training in the dark side of the Force. Dessel eventually became Dark Lord of the Sith Darth Bane, but would never forget his time with the Gloom Walkers.
- "So? What's the word, Des? When they finally give us the go, is this mission going to be a spicerun?"
Adanar was a senior Sith trooper, and the Gloom Walkers' third-in-command behind Dessel and Ulabore. Adanar enlisted in the Sith military on the same day as Dessel, and the two grew to be good friends. After basic training, the two were placed in the Gloom Walkers together, and Adanar grew to admire Dessel. Upon taking the Republic outpost during the Battle of Phaseera, Adanar and a small contingent were left there to hold the outpost while Dessel returned to camp.
- "I can't drop nine targets that fast by myself, Sarge. Nobody can."
Lucia was a junior officer and sniper with the Gloom Walkers, one of the youngest soldiers in the unit. Before the Battle of Phaseera, Lucia had not seen much action, but had come to be regarded as one of the better shots in the Gloom Walkers. After witnessing Dessel's seemingly impossible feats in the battle, Lucia told their Sith superiors of Dessel's abilities, causing him to be recognized as a Force-sensitive. She was very loyal to Dessel, and after his arrest, Lucia felt dissent toward Ulabore. During a skirmish with Republic troops on Alaris Prime, Lucia betrayed Ulabore and shot him in the back, killing him. After the war and the dissolution of the Gloom Walkers, she became a prisoner of war and was placed on a work planet, until the Senate released an official pardon to all troopers who had served the Sith. She eventually found work as a mercenary, bounty hunter, and finally a bodyguard for Princess Serra until her death.
Behind the scenesEdit
The Gloom Walkers made their first appearance in Drew Karpyshyn's 2006 novel, Darth Bane: Path of Destruction, and were also mentioned in Karpyshyn's 2009 novel, Darth Bane: Dynasty of Evil. The unit did receive a mention in Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force and an entry in The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia.
- Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side
- The Essential Reader's Companion (First pictured)