|Chronological and political information|
- "Daala has no political motives—she just wants to destroy things."
- ―Han Solo
Natasi Daala was a Human female who became the first woman to reach the rank of admiral in the Imperial Navy, and later was named Chief of State of the Galactic Federation of Free Alliances. Daala enlisted in the Imperial Navy on Carida, but was discriminated against due to her gender. However, she achieved success thanks to Moff Wilhuff Tarkin, who discovered her after she defeated many skilled Imperial opponents in simulated battles, using an alias to hide her true identity. Tarkin took her under his wing, and as he rose in the ranks, so did she. She became his lover and was eventually promoted to admiral by him. Shortly after, she was sent to oversee the top-secret Imperial research facility known as the Maw Installation. There, some of the best scientists in the galaxy worked on new concepts, designing superweapons for the Empire. She resided there with four Imperial I-class Star Destroyers for eleven years, unaware of what was happening in the galaxy.
In 11 ABY, Kyp Durron, Han Solo, and Chewbacca stumbled upon the facility after making an emergency escape from Kessel. She interrogated them, and was stunned to learn that Tarkin and Emperor Palpatine were dead and the Empire was on the verge of collapse, having been defeated by the Rebel Alliance. She decided to launch her campaign to wreak havoc on the galaxy and gain revenge for Tarkin's death, with her four Star Destroyers and the Sun Crusher superweapon. However, the Sun Crusher was stolen from her by Solo and his two companions, who were also able to warn the New Republic of Daala's existence. Ultimately, Daala accomplished little, and with three of her Star Destroyers destroyed, headed back to the Maw to try to protect it from the New Republic. There, she found New Republic forces, who attacked her fleet. Though she managed to destroy the Installation, preventing the New Republic from gaining new weapons, her Star Destroyer was damaged and she made an emergency hyperspace jump.
In 12 ABY, Daala attempted to unify the Imperial warlords, but found little success. She executed them, then took command of their forces. She once again attempted to destroy the New Republic, this time with the aid of Vice Admiral Gilad Pellaeon. However, she was defeated, and relinquished command to Pellaeon, resigning from the military. A year later, she re-appeared to aid the New Republic against the corrupt Moff Tol Getelles, then disappeared, swearing she was done with military service. It was at this time that Daala was reunited with her former lover Liegeus Vorn; the two married and later had a son. In 17 ABY she once again attacked the New Republic, but was defeated.
The New Republic believed she was dead, but Daala stunned them when, in 40 ABY, she revealed herself to the galaxy once more. Commander of the Maw Irregular Fleet, she split from the Imperial Remnant to join the Mandalorians and fight against Darth Caedus, the despotic leader of the Galactic Federation of Free Alliances. Following the death of Caedus, she became the new Chief of State of the Galactic Alliance. After attempting to fix what Caedus had done, she displayed a strong anti-Jedi sentiment, exiling Luke Skywalker as part of a backlash against the Jedi. However, after she ordered a siege of the Jedi Temple and entered a severe dispute with the acting Grand Master, Kenth Hamner, her actions caused her to be perceived more negatively by the public and viewed as a tyrant by the Jedi. Unable to handle her increasingly extreme policies, a group of Jedi led a coup to depose her. Sent to prison, Daala was able to escape from confinement with the help of the bounty hunter Boba Fett and began to plan her revenge on those who had removed her from power.
Thanks to Boba Fett's intelligence, Daala blackmailed several members of the Council of Moffs to join her in overthrowing Head of State Jagged Fel and taking control of the Imperial Remnant. However, the betrayal of Moff Tol Getelles and the arrival of Empire of the Hand ships to support Fel forced Daala into a siege at Exodo II. As Daala and Fel faced off, political instability erupted in the Remnant and, under the advice of Lieutenant Lydea Pagorski, Daala offered to compete with Fel in a general election for Head of State. Daala campaigned against Fel and Admiral Vitor Reige. Despite Fel's withdrawal, Reige defeated Daala, ending her ambitions.
Early life and career
- "They always said that Daala tore up the strategy books."
- ―Admiral Cha Niathal
Born of Human parents on Irmenu, a planet located in the Belsmuth sector of the Outer Rim Territories, Natasi Daala belonged to a princely family. When she was still a baby, rivals of the Daalas managed to overrun and seize their holdings. While the whole Daala family was to be eliminated, a younger son of the rival house took pity on the infant Natasi. He had her smuggled offworld, leaving her at an orphanage on Botajef while her the rest of her family was being slaughtered.
When she was young, Daala fell in love with the holo faker Liegeus Vorn. However, feeling a need for a sense of duty, she enrolled in the Academy of Carida to serve the Empire, and so left Vorn. While she was a talented student and officer at the Imperial Academy, she was continually passed over for promotion due to her gender, though accounts by Imperial military officers said that she argued too much. To take out her frustrations toward the male-dominated military, she made herself a false computer identity. Under this alias, Daala was able to defeat many high-level officers, including some of her own instructors, in simulated battles. Many of her tactics were based upon ideas formed by former Galactic Republic commander Jan Dodonna. Her tactics were studied and implemented throughout the entire Imperial military, despite the fact that no one was aware of her true identity. Daala graduated from the Academy, but ended up a non-commissioned officer in the Imperial Army.
Protégée of Wilhuff Tarkin
- "My skills came to the attention of Moff Tarkin, who journeyed to Carida so that he could meet the mysterious individual who had developed such innovative tactics.[…]Tarkin was astonished to learn I was a woman and even more astonished to see that I was a lowly corporal working in the kitchen."
- ―Natasi Daala, to Vice-Admiral Pellaeon
Due to her talents, she soon gained the attention of Moff Wilhuff Tarkin. He investigated Daala's hidden exploits at the Academy, hiring two black-market slicers who worked for several months to find the identity of the hidden strategist. He was pleasantly surprised to discover her true identity. At the time, Daala held the rank of corporal and had first been a computer clerk, then a member of the kitchen staff preparing food for Star Destroyers. When the Carida staff discovered her identity, they planned to reassign her to a meteorological station at the planet's southern pole. However, Tarkin took her on as his protégé and mistress, using his influence to bypass the normal military hierarchy and promote her. Daala eventually received the rank of admiral, though, in later years, her rank badge would come to represent the rank of Grand Moff.
Many quietly complained that Daala was sleeping her way to the top. When one of those remarks made its way back to Tarkin, he searched out the officer who had made it. He had the officer sealed inside an environmental suit and ejected him into the space over a planet as punishment. Tarkin had the suit's radio left on so that others could hear the man over the course of 24 hours as his orbit decayed. The officer's orbit decayed to the point where he finally entered the planet's atmosphere and burned up upon reentry. However, the allegations were in fact partly accurate, as Daala did have an affair with Tarkin.
Command of Maw Installation
- "I am Admiral Daala, in charge of the fleet guarding Maw Installation. You three are in a lot of trouble."
- ―Natasi Daala, to Han Solo following the capture of Endor
Tarkin, now a Grand Moff, entrusted Daala with overseeing and protecting the Maw Installation, the birthplace of the Death Stars, World Devastators, and the Sun Crusher. This facility was hidden away even from the rest of the Empire, and a fleet of four Imperial-class Star Destroyers—the Basilisk, Gorgon, Hydra, and Manticore—was stationed there. Daala herself received the Gorgon as her flagship, with Commander Kratas as her senior subordinate. She was to protect the facility in the unexpected event of attack, keeping the top-secret designs, as well as the scientists such as Qwi Xux and Tol Sivron, safe. Very few, save for Emperor Palpatine, knew about this facility, though Daala believed that even Palpatine was unaware of the Maw. After having her promoted to admiral, Tarkin ordered Daala never to abandon her post or break communication silence unless he returned, as she had no authority outside Tarkin's command. However, Tarkin did recall her from the Maw on several occasions, and she was present with Tarkin on the planet Alderaan around 7 BBY when he had a meeting with the planet's senator, Bail Organa.
Around 0 BBY Daala was stationed at the Maw while Tarkin was on board the Death Star, a massive superweapon being constructed above the planet Despayre. Tarkin had ordered Daala to never leave, but he found himself breaking his own rule when he summoned her from the installation. Tarkin contacted her via holocomm, and informed her that he wished she join him on the station. Daala eagerly agreed and hurried to fly to Despayre. When she arrived, she met Tarkin in the docking bay and the two headed to her quarters. Daala later witnessed Tarkin question Admiral Motti after the Undauntable, a Star Destroyer under the command of the respected Admiral Jaim Helaw, exploded seemingly at random. Tarkin was clueless as to who the guilty party was.
Daala later showed Tarkin a video she had obtained from the security cameras after hacking into Tarkin's files. This video showed an unidentified being planting an explosive in a cargo container at the Gall Imperial Regional Naval Supply Area. As this facility had a reputation for extreme security, the two of them began to believe it was an inside job. However, they still did not know the identity of the bomber. Tarkin gave her the task of determining who had set the bomb, although Daala was unable to learn anything and headed back to the Maw, with plans to return soon.
When she returned a short time afterward, her Star Destroyer entered in a battle zone. A Rebel Lucrehulk-class battleship named the Fortressa had appeared and released 500 X-wings. The Death Star's superlaser made short work of the ship, and the station's TIE pilots easily defeated the fighters. However, during the battle Daala was injured, suffering a head injury when her Star Destroyer was hit. She was taken to the Death Star, where she was operated on by doctors Kornell Divini, Abu Banu and Roa. Daala survived, but she had memory loss, forgetting the events of the past year. Tarkin sent her back to the Maw after carefully erasing all records of her presence. Unknown to Daala, after Divini experienced a change of heart about the Empire and decided to defect, he used her for his cover, claiming that the shuttle he was on was going to pick up Daala, whom he said had been wounded in battle.
The Death Star was destroyed at the Battle of Yavin not longer afterward, killing Tarkin. However, Daala remained unaware of this. For eleven more years she waited patiently to hear from Tarkin, while the scientists continued research and development on a variety of weapons. Daala kept her crew battle ready with many drills, ensuring that when Tarkin finally did contact her, she and her soldiers would be ready.
Revealed to the galaxy
- "If Solo is telling the truth, then my fleet could be the most powerful remnant of the Imperial Navy. We can't just wait here any longer. Now it's our turn to show them what we can do."
- ―Natasi Daala, to Tol Sivron
In 11 ABY, Han Solo, Chewbacca, and Kyp Durron escaped from the prison planet Kessel and accidentally discovered the Maw Installation. Since they were in an Imperial shuttle, which they called the Endor, Daala's crew assumed they were an emissary sent by Tarkin, who had not communicated with them in over a decade. However, when they provided an incorrect code, Daala captured and imprisoned them. Daala then proceeded to torture Han Solo in a torture chair to learn what had happened to the Empire, Solo then informed her of the events of the Galactic Civil War. Daala learned for the first time about the destruction of the Death Stars and the deaths of Emperor Palpatine, Darth Vader, and Grand Moff Tarkin. She also learned that the Empire had fragmented into numerous squabbling warlords. With no true high command in place, and with Tarkin dead, Daala decided that her orders were obsolete and planned to leave the Maw to wage her own personal guerrilla war against the Rebels. As vengeance to the three who had informed her of this dire situation, Daala planned to execute Durron and keep Solo and Chewbacca as prisoners. Having drilled her troops ceaselessly over the past decade, Daala knew that her forces were ready and fit for such a war, and prepared to leave the Maw. However, her plans were set back when her prisoners, aided by disillusioned Maw researcher Qwi Xux, escaped with the Sun Crusher.
Though she attempted to suppress the Sun Crusher with sheer numbers, the near-indestructible superweapon was too durable and Daala was unable to damage it. In order to escape Daala, Han Solo piloted the Sun Crusher towards the Hydra, and plowed straight through its command bridge. The Sun Crusher then entered hyperspace, as the Hydra plummeted into a black hole. Enraged by the loss of one of her Star Destroyers, Daala pursued the diminutive superweapon out of the Maw, and ran into Kessel administrator Moruth Doole's small mercenary fleet. Doole's fleet panicked and fired on Daala's ships. Daala soundly defeated them with minor losses, yet the pain of the Hydra's loss still lingered with her.
Nevertheless, Daala continued on, undaunted, and began raiding New Republic shipping. Daala intercepted a CR90 corvette on its way to a colony on Dantooine. After interrogating the ship's Sullustan captain, Daala's crew found heavy weaponry and equipment for starfighter hangars. Daala determined that the colony was probably a Rebel base, and then released the corvette long enough for it to make an emergency transmission to the New Republic. This way, the New Republic would be aware of her, and, Daala hoped, the knowledge of her attacks would incite chaos and panic. After the transmission was made, she destroyed the corvette and proceeded on to Dantooine. There, Daala sent six AT-ATs to deal with the colony, which was quickly destroyed.
After the attack on Dantooine, Daala's fleet received intelligence from an old Imperial probe droid. This information relayed to Daala the existence of the Mon Calamari shipyards that were important to the New Republic's navy. To Daala, Mon Calamari was as good of a target as any. If the shipyards were destroyed, it would be detrimental to the New Republic. With this new information, Daala decided to attack Mon Calamari. Using one of Tarkin's old strategies, Daala sent the Gorgon and the Basilisk in to fire on the surface of the planet, while the Manticore sat in the darkness of Mon Calamari's moon. In this way, Daala thought she could divert forces away from the shipyards and give the Manticore a clear run at them. Although she was initially successful, a former Mon Calamari admiral in the New Republic fleet, Ackbar, recognized Daala's tactic immediately, having been Tarkin's personal slave. Using a partially finished Mon Cal cruiser, Ackbar sent the ship on a collision with the Manticore, resulting in a second ship from Daala's dwindling fleet being destroyed. Enraged, Daala ordered a full-scale assault on the planet's surface, destroying several of its floating cities. She then fled before New Republic reinforcements could arrive.
Following her defeat at Mon Calamari, Daala retreated to the Cauldron Nebula. She planned to go down fighting, striking a fatal blow against the New Republic by evacuating one of her two remaining Star Destroyers of personnel and equipment, and sending it crashing down onto the surface of Coruscant. This last desperate plan was again met with defeat when rogue Jedi Kyp Durron, piloting the Sun Crusher, delayed Daala's operation by attacking her ship. Daala realized it was just a distraction, and that Durron had already ignited the stars in the nebula with the Sun Crusher's resonance torpedos. She ordered all ships to immediately jump into hyperspace, hoping they could get out before the stars exploded. However, only the Gorgon escaped, as the Basilisk was incinerated by the explosion. Weary of her continuous failed efforts, Daala realized that her selfish and petty desire to do harm to the Rebels had caused the death of the thousands she had been entrusted to lead and protect. She decided to return with the Gorgon to the Maw Installation, vowing to return to Tarkin's assigned mission, and defend it to the death.
Return to the Maw
- "Redouble our efforts against the Installation. Let us show Tol Sivron how it must be done. It's time to destroy Maw Installation once and for all. Open fire!"
- ―Natasi Daala, to Commander Kratas
What she found there, however, was total chaos. The New Republic had already moved to seize Maw Installation, while Tol Sivron and the remaining scientists had sabotaged the facility and absconded with the prototype Death Star, a test version of the battlestation Tarkin had commanded. Both Daala and Sivron decided to attack the occupied facility, though Sivron struggled to get the Death Star's superlaser online. With her crew still faithfully following her lead despite her many defeats, Daala joined the fray, deciding that she would rather destroy the Maw Installation than see it in Rebel hands. She was able to use Sivron's outdated codes to gain access to and download the contents of Maw Installation's mainframe, which contained an abundance of designs and schematics of advanced weaponry that Daala would later use during the Second Galactic Civil War. With the Maw Installation's secrets safely in her possession, Daala and her battered Star Destroyer moved to destroy the facility once and for all. During her attack, Daala's crew noticed that the facility had an unstable reactor core and, determining that it was the best way to dispatch the facility, fired upon it. As the facility exploded with tremendous force, Daala made a hasty jump into hyperspace and narrowly escaped the Maw. Bearing nearly irreparable scars from the battle, the Gorgon set course for the splintered Empire in the Deep Core.
The reunification of the Empire
- "I didn't want to rule. I had no intention of becoming a political leader—but you have given me no choice. I cannot leave the Empire in the hands of fools like you."
- ―Natasi Daala to other Galactic Imperial warlords at Tsoss Beacon
The remnants of the Imperial command dismantled the Gorgon and distributed her surviving crew among the various commanders. Daala chose not to join with anyone, instead serving as a roaming ambassador amongst the warlords in an attempt to unify them. During a meeting with the self-proclaimed Supreme Warlord Blitzer Harrsk in 12 ABY, High Admiral Treuten Teradoc attacked Harrsk's orbiting fleet of twelve Star Destroyers. Teradoc's fleet of Victory-class Star Destroyers destroyed Harrsk's flagship, the Shockwave. Daala's second-in-command, Commander Kratas, was on board the Shockwave inspecting its bridge at the time of its destruction. His death caused Daala great emotional pain and led her to resolve to stop the senseless, inter-warlord feuding at all costs.
However, desperate to avenge his lost flagship, Harrsk wanted an immediate reprisal against Teradoc and pressed Daala into service on the threat of death. Daala reluctantly took control of the Imperial II-class Star Destroyer Firestorm. Harrsk, in the Whirlwind, insisted that Daala lead the attack against Teradoc. When they arrived at Teradoc's stronghold, which was hidden among the asteroids in the ring of a gas giant, they were set upon by Teradoc's fleet. Daala, however, personally took command of her ship's weapon systems and fired a concentrated ion bolt at the Whirlwind, paralyzing it and preventing Harrsk from continuing his assault against Teradoc. With a blaster aimed at a shocked and angry bridge crew, Daala pulled the Firestorm closer to the Whirlwind and activated the time-delayed self destruct system of the Firestorm. Daala told Harrsk that she would destroy her ship and his if he did not order a cessation of hostilities, wishing to force the two warlords to cooperate. As the countdown continued, Daala was contacted by the head of the Crimson Command, Vice Admiral Gilad Pellaeon, who desired to speak to Daala in person. Daala accepted and allowed Pellaeon onto her ship. Shortly after, Harrsk ordered a cessation of hostilities, as he was convinced that Daala was not bluffing.
The Firestorm, escorted by two of Pellaeon's red Star Destroyers, jumped to a secluded spot in space so that Daala and Pellaeon could have an uninterrupted discussion. Like Daala, Pellaeon believed that the warlords were tearing the Empire apart, and he and Daala agreed to force the 13 most powerful warlords to a negotiating table in order to discuss the future of the Empire and plan a combined attack against the New Republic. They finally were able to get the warlords to congregate at Tsoss Beacon, an asteroid containing an Imperial base. Daala made the warlords leave their fleets behind, much to their displeasure. Though she attempted to motivate the Imperial warlords to fight together and crush the New Republic, they spent hours arguing instead, refusing to agree on anything. It became clear that none of them would ally with each other, and so, after hours of petty squabbling, Daala decided that the negotiations were a failure. She sealed the room and filled the chamber with gas, a contingency plan she had developed earlier. Only Daala and Pellaeon survived the poisonous gas, utilizing gas mask-like membranes that Daala had taken into the meeting in case she decided to use her plan to execute the warlords.
With the warlords out of the way, Daala set about uniting their now-leaderless forces. Last of all, Daala visited the fortress of Delvardus. Delvardus' second-in-command, Colonel Ivan Cronus, agreed to join Daala, handing her control of Delvardus' latest creation, the Super Star Destroyer Night Hammer. With the Night Hammer under her command, Daala quickly rallied the scattered remnants of the Empire, making her in the eyes of many the founder of the modern Imperial Remnant. She then named herself the Supreme Commander of the Imperial Fleet, with Pellaeon as her second-in-command. Daala began to prepare a full-on assault against the New Republic.
Assault on the Jedi Praxeum
- "In light of this disaster, I-I hereby resign my rank…and hand over command of all Imperial forces to you. I will be happy to follow your orders and assist with rebuilding the Empire in any way possible, but I feel that I am no longer capable of commanding so many worthy soldiers. They cannot be asked to lay their lives on the line, to swear allegiance to someone who has been beaten so many times."
- ―Natasi Daala, to Vice Admiral Pellaeon
Daala instituted societal reforms in the Imperial military, ending decades of prejudice against women and nonhumans, but moreover vitalizing the decaying fleet with new recruits. She created a massive buildup in preparation for a planned strike at the New Republic. With her fleet ready, Daala and Pellaeon planned an attack on a planet they knew they could win, Yavin 4, the home of the Jedi Praxeum. Knowing she would be fighting the Jedi Knights, Daala added a "k" to her flagship's name, making it the Knight Hammer, as a pun. Daala's preparations were interrupted when two Jedi, Kyp Durron and Dorsk 81, were discovered in a crowd of Imperials during one of Daala's speeches. The Jedi fought their way out of the crowd and escaped before Daala could marshal her forces against them. Furious, Daala had their escape vector traced to a planet called Khomm in the Deep Core.
Daala sent Pellaeon and a group of Imperial Star Destroyers to Yavin 4 for an attack on the Jedi Praxeum. She planned to follow shortly after Pellaeon, while Cronus, in command of a fleet of Victory-class Star Destroyers, including Pellaeon's previous flagship, the 13X, struck at Khomm and several other strategic targets. Cronus ravaged Khomm, and after bombarding the other planets, headed for Yavin IV.
Then, according to plan Daala arrived in-system after the enemy had been weakened. However, when the Knight Hammer arrived at Yavin 4, Pellaeon's fleet was nowhere to be found, despite sensor readings showing that troops had already been deployed by his fleet. Enraged, Daala launched a vicious bombardment against the jungle moon. Soon after, a YT-1300 light freighter, the Millennium Falcon, arrived at Yavin and landed on the moon despite Daala's attempt to stop it. It then returned to space after picking up several passengers, with its captain, none other than Han Solo from the Maw debacle, boldly taunting her. Daala sent out several TIE squadrons against the Falcon, and with such odds arrayed against Solo, death seemed inevitable. However, another unforeseen event occurred: Ackbar, the admiral who defeated her at Mon Calamari a year before, arrived in-system with the Mon Calamari cruiser Galactic Voyager and four Corellian corvettes. Suddenly, Colonel Cronus arrived in system with a portion of his Victory-class Star Destroyer fleet. Both Daala and Cronus attacked the New Republic fleet. Daala eventually destroyed the corvettes and damaged the Voyager, but once again, Daala's luck changed for the worse. A damaged corvette crashed into the 13X, destroying the ship and killing Cronus. Angered, Daala continued firing on the Voyager, destroying its shields. The New Republic was aided by the sudden appearance of several Victory-class Star Destroyers, but was still outnumbered. Daala then received news that Pellaeon's fleet had been located on the outskirts of the system.
The Vice Admiral claimed that Jedi sorcery was responsible for him not being present at the battle. Nonetheless, Daala was still confident her forces would win. Suddenly, several explosions were set off on the Knight Hammer, destroying the engine units. The immobile Star Destroyer then began to drift towards the gas giant Yavin, pulled in by its immense gravitational field. Accepting defeat, Daala ordered an immediate evacuation of the ship. Before Daala managed to get to her executive escape pod, she was intercepted by Jedi Knight Callista Ming, who was responsible for the crippling of the Knight Hammer. Daala and Callista engaged in a short fire-fight before Daala shot her opponent with a stun blast. She then left Callista for dead and escaped from the dying wake of the Knight Hammer. By the time Daala's pod was recovered by Pellaeon, she had realized that her quest for vengeance against the New Republic had put too many loyal Imperials in danger. Daala promoted Pellaeon to the rank of Admiral and relinquished her title of Supreme Commander to him, apparently resigning from Imperial service for good.
In 13 ABY, the droids C-3PO and R2-D2 encountered Daala on Cybloc XII. Following her retirement from Imperial service, Daala had become the leader of a group of settlers. She had made a deal with an Imperial Moff to settle down on Pedducis Chorios along with the thousands of colonists. However, when she arrived she found the planet virtually abandoned. Daala tortured the droids, who revealed that the Death Seed plague had struck the planet, wiping out all beings there. The droids also told her that the plague had been released as part of a plan by the Loronar Corporation, ex-Senator Seti Ashgad—who had been exiled to Nam Chorios decades ago by Palpatine—and the corrupt Moff Tol Getelles.
After learning this, she decided to fight against Getelles and Loronar, even though it meant aiding the New Republic. And so, fighting alongside the government she had once hated, Daala went to battle. The New Republic succeeded in defeating Getelles and containing the Death Seed, thanks in part to Daala. Daala was prepared to negotiate a peace treaty with the New Republic. Shortly before negotiations could begin, she encountered her old flame Liegeus Vorn. Following a negotiation, Daala and Vorn returned to Peduccis Chorios together.
Almost a year later, Daala resurfaced in the Deep Core looking to establish another fleet. With forces swelled by Imperials returning from imprisonment under the alien Yevetha, she united the squabbling factions under warlords including Foga Brill and Moff Tethys and prepared to strike once more at the New Republic. The forces of the Imperial Remnant were preparing for a grand pincer campaign, with Admiral Pellaeon moving coreward from the Outer Rim, and Daala and the new Deep Core warlords moving out from the Deep Core. Daala's campaign was unfocused as each warlord headed his own attacks against the New Republic. Because of the unfocused nature of her campaign, Daala did not have much success against the New Republic. In 17 ABY, she attacked the New Republic in the Deep Core. Her ships were trapped by General Garm Bel Iblis in a pair of CC-7000 gravity well frigates. Desperate, she had one of her ships ram one of the enemy CC-7000s, destroying it. Daala then made a blind hyperspace jump. Despite being presumed killed, New Republic Intelligence consistently refused to remove her name from the list of potential threats.
Though many believed she was dead, New Republic Intelligence was right in their worst-case scenario assumption that she had survived. Daala had fled the Deep Core and returned to the Maw. The Maw Installation was rebuilt and Daala established a small colony to live there under her command. Daala and her lover Vorn had a son, who would later have a daughter. Daala also built up a small fleet, named the Maw Irregular, which was armed with a variety of weapons designed by the Maw scientists themselves. During the Yuuzhan Vong War, in which extra-galactic aliens waged war on the galaxy, she helped out planets in need of aid, although word of this never spread to the New Republic's ears. Sometime after the Battle of Bastion in 28 ABY, Daala acquired the Chimaera, an Imperial Star Destroyer that had served as the flagship of the legendary Grand Admiral Thrawn 20 years earlier. In 35 ABY, Vorn was killed by the Moffs in an attempt to assassinate Daala. Though Daala survived, she lost one eye in the incident and swore revenge for the death of her love.
Second Galactic Civil War
- "You called. I promised you I'd always come if you used that code, just like Darakaer."
- ―Natasi Daala to Gilad Pellaeon
In 40 ABY, the Second Galactic Civil War broke out. The Galactic Alliance, which had replaced the New Republic following the Yuuzhan Vong War, was in conflict with a group of rebel planets known as the Confederation. The Jedi Order had left the Galactic Alliance in protest of Chief of State Jacen Solo, now the Sith Lord Darth Caedus. Gilad Pellaeon, leader of the Imperial Remnant, which had signed a peace treaty with the Alliance decades earlier, was contacted by Caedus, who was seeking an alliance with the Imperials, who still possessed a formidable fleet. Pellaeon, who did not approve of Caedus' actions, declined his offer. However, he was troubled, and so decided to contact Daala, whom he had not seen in over 25 years.
Using a code known as the Darakaer code after an old Irmenu folk hero, Pellaeon sent a message to Daala, who received his message, and came to his aid. She met him on board his new flagship, the Bloodfin. Daala informed Pellaeon of how she had survived and what she had been doing, and more while the two talked about Caedus' offer and the current situation in the galaxy. Both believed Caedus had no business in politics and needed to be knocked down a peg.
Following her discussion with Pellaeon, Daala contacted the famed bounty hunter Boba Fett, who was not surprised to learn that she had survived. Daala offered him a bounty, this one aimed at Caedus. Fett mulled over the offer, promising to get back to her. A short time later, Pellaeon took his fleet to Fondor, prepared to aid Caedus in the upcoming battle, where the Alliance was attempting to conquer the shipbuilding world. However, when Caedus and forces loyal to him attacked co-Chief of State Cha Niathal's ships in an attempt to gain sole control of the government, Pellaeon decided to support Niathal. He never had the chance. Tahiri Veila, Caedus' apprentice, aided by several traitorous Moffs, killed Pellaeon. Most of the Imperial fleet was now under the control of Darth Caedus.
It was then that Admiral Daala arrived. Her fleet, the Maw Irregular, jumped out of hyperspace, surprising Caedus. The fleet was composed of many "ancient" ships, such as a Venator-class Star Destroyer and Assassin-class corvettes. The lead ship was the Chimaera.
Swearing revenge for Pellaeon and Vorn, Daala moved into the battle. The Chimaera turned towards the Anakin Solo, Caedus' flagship. Prior to the battle, Daala had contacted Fett again, asking him to steal a Star Destroyer for her. Now, as Fett and his Mandalorian warriors put their plan into action, Daala's forces engaged the Alliance. The Chimaera blasted apart the Alliance vessels in her way, using Metal-Crystal Phase Shifters, a weapon that altered the molecular composition of the ships. This weapon had been developed at the Maw, and believed lost when the installation was damaged decades earlier, although Daala had kept the plans for it. Now, it made Daala's older ships a match for Caedus' newer fleet.
Thanks to Daala and her fleet, Caedus's forces lost the battle. Following the capture of the Bloodfin and slaughter of several Moffs by the Mandalorians, Daala headed to the ship to inspect it and speak with Fett. After identifying the Moffs and regretting the fact that one of the ones killed by the Mandalorians had been responsible for Vorn's death, meaning she couldn't kill him herself, Daala had a conversation with Fett. Both expressed the opinion that they were tired of Force-users reigning supreme, and that it only led to turmoil with Caedus turning to politics as the perfect example. Daala also told Boba Fett that she had a son and a granddaughter, something that came as a surprise to him. The two ended their conversation with a toast to Pellaeon, a man who Daala admired for his steadfast loyalty and determination. Daala later met with Fett in Keldabe, the capital of the planet Mandalore. The two spoke once more, discussing their personal lives, in which Daala revealed her first name, Natasi.
Galactic Alliance Chief of State
Early regime (41 ABY—43 ABY)
- "My friends, it is my promise to you here today that sometime in the not-too-distant future, we will live in a galaxy where our space navies exist to better our societies, not defend them—where we won't need Jedi to sort out our differences and mete out justice, because we will be living under a government that is just."
- ―Newly-appointed Galactic Alliance Chief of State Natasi Daala at the peace ceremony doubling as the end of the Second Galactic Civil War and her inauguration
Daala and the Maw Irregular Fleet later took part in such crucial final battles of the war such as the Second Battle of Roche. There, the fleet was soundly defeated by the Alliance's Admiral Nek Bwua'tu. Jacen Solo was soon after killed in a lightsaber duel, and the Alliance joined forces with the Imperial Remnant and the Jedi Coalition. The Confederation surrendered to the combined strength of its enemies, and the war was brought to a close. With Solo dead, Daala was nominated by Bwua'tu for the position of Galactic Alliance Chief of State, as he did not wish to enter politics. In lieu of Cha Niathal, Daala was appointed as the only universally accepted choice. She had some changes to make to the Moff Council as well. The new council would be composed of an equal amount of females as males, something still unheard of decades after Emperor Palpatine's death. In her inaugural address, she promised to do everything she could for peace, with hopes that one day war would not exist, and implied that the Alliance might no longer need the Jedi.
Daala's early regime was one of peace, although she was quick to punish law-breakers. This led to heightened surveillance across the galaxy, even on notorious crime worlds such as Nar Shaddaa. However, not all was good. The Mon Calamari were particularly resentful of her being elevated to Chief of State and wanted to try her for war crimes, particularly her attack on their planet. Daala was also distrustful of the New Jedi Order and had a tense working relationship with Jedi Grand Master Luke Skywalker. Daala believed that a just and fair government would not need the Jedi Order to police it, and feared that more Jedi would turn to the dark side like Caedus, preventing the galaxy from ever having a lasting peace. She also increased the role and reach of the Mandalorians, whom she brought into the Galactic Alliance as elite security operatives and intelligence specialists. Luke Skywalker feared that she wanted to increase the power and resources of the Mandalorians in case she needed to use them against the Jedi, such as when she dispatched a team of Mandalorians to track down the rogue Jedi Seff Hellin—much to the dismay and concern of Skywalker, who was having trouble getting her to accept that the Jedi were self-policing. She later ordered that Luke Skywalker be arrested for dereliction of duty after he called all Jedi back to the Jedi Temple.
A career officer herself, Daala restored strength and responsiveness to a military devastated by a destructive civil war that saw many a promising career ruined. Indeed, within the first two years of her administration Daala's improvements to the military had exceeded analyst expectations. With the dissolution of Darth Caedus's Galactic Alliance Guard following the end of the war, Daala created a replacement security force known as Galactic Alliance Security. In 43 ABY, Daala invited Imperial and Confederation leaders to Coruscant to negotiate the terms of unification. The Senate Unification Preparations Committee, led by Bothan Senator Tiurrg Drey'lye, was set up by the Chief of State to prepare for the summit. During the summit, it was noted that the three leaders, Daala, Imperial Head of State Jagged Fel and Confederation Supreme Commander Turr Phennir, all had ties to the Galactic Empire.
Tensions with the Jedi Order (43 ABY—)
- "Daala will come for us, will she not?"
"Oh yeah. One way or another, she'll be coming. After the ruckus she made about the Jedi being a danger to the government, she can't let us win. If she does, she's done as Chief of State."
"Then she is done either way, because the Jedi are not going to lose this fight."
- ―Saba Sebatyne, and Corran Horn
After Luke's trial and exile, Daala started a massive campaign against the Jedi Order, so as to take control over them. Her first move was when Valin Horn was revealed to be infected with an enigmatic madness. She had him arrested and frozen in carbonite. She later sent Galactic Alliance Security troops and her special-missions force to arrest Seff Hellin when he tried to release Horn. They failed to get him and he was captured by Darkmeld, a Jedi organization that was fighting Daala's policies against them.
After Natua Wan developed the psychosis, journalist Javis Tyrr discovered Darkmeld's existence and the fact that they were hiding Hellin and Wan in the Jedi Temple. She met with acting Grand Master Kenth Hamner as to gain custody of the mad Jedi. Hamner refused and agreed to let Daala's man access them if they were left in Jedi custody. Also, all the Darkmeld Jedi were forced to publicly apologize for their actions.
Sometime later, Daala's assistant, Wynn Dorvan, told Jagged Fel that she was planning to hire Mandalorian bounty hunters to take on the Jedi. Despite at first refusing to accept to tell the Jedi, he finally did. Also, Fel met with Daala to tell her that Moff Drikl Lecersen was plotting behind his back and was probably trying to overthrow them both. He also asked Daala to abandon her agenda against the Jedi. She refused and dismissed him. Later, the Jedi formulated a plan to attack Daala in the media. Using the signature of the head of the Court of Jedi Affairs, Arabelle Lorteli, to gain access to a secret Galactic Alliance Security blockhouse where the Horn siblings where being held in carbonite. When Mirax Terrik Horn attacked Colonel Wruq Retk for hanging them up as trophies, Daala arrived and told the crowd of journalists that Mirax wouldn't be charged. She also ordered the siblings brought down and placed in proper custody. This situation also led to Daala's public humiliation and a wave of sympathy for the Jedi erupted in the public due to her manipulation of the courts in her favor.
When General Merratt Jaxton, the Chief of Starfighter Command, claimed that ex-Chief of State Cha Niathal was partially to blame for the rise of Darth Caedus and that it would give a good public image, Daala summoned Niathal to Coruscant so that she would stand trial for dereliction of duty. After Daala's emissary, Elyas Caran, arrived on Mon Calamari, Niathal, outraged by Daala's actions, committed suicide. The Chief of State, who had felt sympathetic towards the former Admiral as she was just a victim of politics, was greatly saddened by Niathal's death. Her body was brought back to Coruscant for a funeral with full honors. Despite his chief's wishes, Dorvan told her that, due to the public's opposition to her on Niathal's trial, she was at risk for an assassination. Daala watched the funeral from her office.
After the Mandalorians attacked the Jedi Temple on Daala's order, she issued a warrant for the arrest of several high-profile Jedi like acting Grand Master Hamner. When the Solos returned to Coruscant after their trip to Dathomir, Daala met with them and said that she wanted to ease the tension between her and the Jedi and that, to that end, she wanted Han and Leia to act as ambassadors between her and the Jedi Council. The Council accepted this but only to see the true extent of Daala's good will. Daala asked that the Jedi turn in the recently apprehended Sothais Saar over to the Galactic Alliance. The Jedi agreed but only if they were allowed full access to the prisoner. Having no choice, she agreed.
At the same time, Moff Drikl Lecersen, Kuati Senator Haydnat Treen, Senator Fost Bramsin and General Jaxton were plotting to remove Daala and Fel, replacing them with Treen and Lecersen respectively before uniting the Galactic Alliance and the Imperial Remnant into a new Galactic Empire with them as the Emperor and Empress. To depose Daala, Treen planned for the Chief of State to invoke the Emergency Powers Act if the situation with the Jedi got out of hand. Therefore, public opinion would force Daala out of office, paving the way for Treen to take her place. Also, the conspirators attempted assassinations on Fel to fool the Jedi into thinking Daala masterminded them.
Later, when the Jedi refused to turn over the psychotic Jedi Saar and Turi Altamik to Galactic Alliance custody, Daala ordered the Jedi Temple to be sieged by Mandalorians under the command of Belok Rhal. During this time, Daala's lover, Admiral Nek Bwua'tu, went behind her back and pledged to Kenth Hamner the service of the Galactic Alliance Navy to the Jedi; also, public opinion of Daala became more negative, as they were beginning to view her as a second Palpatine. However, Luke Skywalker, meanwhile, successfully defeated the being causing the psychosis, and the afflicted Jedi were all instantly cured. This resulted in the psychotic Jedi returning to sanity.
Daala later appeared at the Temple when she heard the Jedi wished to turn the psychotic Jedi over to her. Daala enlisted the help of the Bith Thalleus Tharn, a doctor of xenopsychiatry, to check the condition of the insane Jedi. Han Solo and the Order publicly embarrassed her when it was revealed to the public that the Jedi were no longer psychotic. However, she still refused to release the Horn siblings so she could have hostages to keep the Order in line while her Mandalorian mercenaries tried to put down a slave uprising on Blaudu Sextus. However, the Jedi managed to stop the Mandalorians, launch their StealthX starfighters to aid the Skywalkers against the Sith and successfully retrieve the Horn siblings from her custody. Daala later contacted the Jedi Temple and demanded to speak with Hamner, unaware that he had died after a failed attempt to stop the Stealth X Wings. Saba Sebatyne spoke to Daala instead, and Daala told her, Corran Horn and Cilghal that they left her no choice but to resort to destroying the Jedi on Coruscant.
- "So. Death."
"You first. Comm me and let me know what it's like."
- ―Daala and Tahiri, meeting in prison
Shortly afterward, the Jedi Council now under the leadership of acting Grand Master Saba Sebatyne, formulated a plan to launch a coup against Daala. The Council put their plan into action at the same time as Senator Treen and her allies launched their bid to remove the Chief of State. In the chaos, Chief Daala was captured and imprisoned. Daala saw Tahiri Veila, who had been sentenced to death for Pellaeon's murder, in the cell beside hers.
Sebatyne subsequently addressed the Senate, informing them of the Chief's arrest and that the Jedi would take control of the Alliance in the transition until new elections could take place. The Jedi formed a constitutional replacement for the position of Chief of State; rather than one person having control of the Alliance, a Triumvirate was formed between Sebatyne, Jaxton and Treen, with a two-thirds majority needed between the three to make executive decisions. In the meantime, Daala contacted the bounty hunter Boba Fett to help her break out of prison. In the ensuing chaos, both Daala and Veila were able to escape from the prison, and Daala enlisted Fett's help in helping her get revenge against those who had deposed her.
In the aftermath of her escape, Fett told Daala that he and his Mandalorians had discovered from their missions in putting out slave riots throughout the galaxy that Moff Drikl Lecersen and a secret circle of conspirators had been responsible for the Freedom Flight in the first place; the intention of Lecersen in this venture was to purposely overburden Daala in her duties in the Galactic Alliance, which would eventually lead to the coup that the Jedi enacted against her. Following this, Daala enlisted the help of all the Moffs, including Lecersen after blackmailing him, so that she could have Head of State Jagged Fel killed and then she would rule the Galactic Empire once more; and this time, with the intention of properly ruling the galaxy again. However, thanks to the treachery of Moff Tol Getelles, Fel declared open war on Daala.
The position of Chief of State would be indefinitely suspended and its constitutional authority would be redirected to a newly-formed ruling Triumvirate, composed of Jedi Grand Master Saba Sebatyne, Senator Haydnat Treen and General Merratt Jaxton until new elections could be held. To ensure that no single individual could possess direct control over the Armed Forces or the Intelligence Service, a two-thirds majority vote was required within the Triumvirate in order to make executive decisions.
Personality and traits
- "Natasi Daala has been an erratic officer, a laser cannon with a malfunctioning actuator if you will, since she was an ensign in the Imperial Navy, and her recent actions bear out this diagnosis. Of course she is a hero—she has fought all her enemies, real and imagined, with bravery and ferocity. But she needs to be held, and cured, before ever being allowed to take up any sort of command again. The Alliance was foolish to elevate her to a position of power."
- ―Moff Getelles
Daala was an aggressive commander who harbored much frustration at being so poorly treated in the Imperial command structure. She was considered to be remarkably charismatic, but due to her gender and suspect manner of promotion this was often ignored. She also could be ruthless, ordering the bombardment of colonies, the destruction of merchant vessels, the torture of prisoners, and the destruction of worlds with seemingly no remorse. Daala was often prone to great fury which she found difficult to constrain, but found that attacking a target during battle was the best way to release her anger. She felt that outbursts of one's anger were unprofessional, and restrained herself mostly to serve as an example to her crewmen. She was also mistrustful of Force-users, both light and dark-side, and in a private conference with Boba Fett agreed that the galaxy would be better off without them.
Daala was also devoted to the cause of the Empire almost to the point of irrationalism—at least in the eyes of the post-Endor warlords—and to following orders, remaining at the Maw installation for years without any outside contact. She felt that the Empire provided order, a thing greatly needed, and something the New Republic did not have. She also was willing to go to great lengths to further that cause, including killing other Imperial leaders, wanting to sacrifice a Star Destroyer to destroy Coruscant, and sacrificing her own life for the Empire. Often before making a decision or when contemplating failure, Daala would think of Tarkin, imagining his rage in the case of the latter.
Beneath the carefully calculated façade used to inspire loyalty in her crew, however, Daala did have a soft side, which she displayed very rarely to those she led or fought against, since she strived to not show any weakness. Daala felt that being a woman caused others to be naturally biased against her, and she worked to keep her emotions in, as she felt that emotion was often a sign of weakness. She did occasionally reveal an emotional side towards those she respected and trusted, such as her long time second-in-command and her former lover. Daala also displayed a high degree of emotion toward her own people, particularly when she thought she had let them down. When the Hydra plunged into the Maw, she was overwhelmed with the thought of all the crewmen losing their lives, and because she had been charged with leading and training them, she felt that their deaths were her fault. She had several other similar reactions to death, such as when her long time second-in-command, Kratas, was killed during a inter-warlord skirmish. Daala blamed herself for getting him involved in what she viewed as a petty feud, and had to fight back the surge of emotion that resulted from his death.
These deaths also played to Daala's own vindictiveness, and she would go to great lengths to avenge her losses, personal and otherwise. For instance, when the Hydra crashed into the Maw, she obliterated a practically unarmed colony on Dantooine in order sate her appetite for vengeance. Despite her vindictiveness, her compassion for those who served under her was what led her to believe that her constant string of failures put too many lives in jeopardy, to which she reacted by handing Gilad Pellaeon the reigns of the Empire.
Despite her hatred of the New Republic and its heroes like Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa Solo, Daala decided to fight alongside them to defeat Darth Caedus in 41 ABY. As she had explained to Pellaeon, she was tired of Force-users taking control, as she felt they had done nothing to deserve political power. Daala also wanted vengeance for Vorn's death at the hands of the Moffs, and hoped to kill the Imperial Moffs who were responsible. Caedus was defeated with the aid of Daala's fleet, after which she was elected head of the Galactic Alliance, successor to the New Republic she had once despised. She promised to restore peace to the galaxy, and worked hard to make her vision of a peaceful future a reality. However, Daala still harbored resentment towards Luke Skywalker, and distrusted his Jedi Order. This anti-Jedi sentiment was exacerbated by the rise of the Force psychosis among Jedi Knights, which led to very tense relations between her and the Order.
Daala first met Vorn before enrolling in the Imperial Academy, and fell in love with him. However, the two were forced to part when Daala entered the Imperial Academy on Carida prior to 0 BBY, although she would meet him again in 13 ABY. They discovered that their feelings had never gone away, and they later had at least one son. The duo's love was very strong, and they stayed together until Vorn was killed in 35 ABY by the Moffs in a failed attempt to assassinate Daala. Daala swore revenge on the Moffs for this, and refused to get a replacement for the eye she had lost in the attack.
Tarkin discovered Daala after learning of a mysterious individual who constantly beat all their opponents in simulated battles at Carida's Imperial Academy. After finding out that she was a woman, and being discriminated against because of it, he took her under his wing, and the two became lovers, despite the fact that he was married. Daala found Tarkin to be everything she wanted—a man with power, ambition, and who was a great lover. She greatly admired Tarkin, and studied his strategies. Tarkin meanwhile promoted her to admiral, and placed her in charge of the Maw Installation. After learning of Tarkin's death at Yavin IV, Daala was stunned, and promised to avenge her former lover and mentor.
When Han and Leia Solo told Jaina Solo that Daala had become the new Chief of State of the Galactic Alliance, Han remarked that he suspected that Admiral Bwua'tu, who had turned down the job, had 'always had a thing' for Daala. It was implied, in 43 ABY during a conversation between Daala and Bwua'tu that they were having an affair. Later, Daala and Bwu'atu began to spend more time together, with the Bothan visiting Daala in her private quarters.
Behind the scenes
Admiral Daala was created by Kevin J. Anderson for The Jedi Academy Trilogy. Throughout her many appearances, Daala is a feared antagonist, despite her many defeats. Though Anderson had planned on her dying in the climactic Cauldron Nebula explosion of Dark Apprentice, he decided to revive her for Champions of the Force, and after her appearance in the Jedi Academy series, she appeared in Anderson's Darksaber, where she was again one of the antagonists, with a desire to unite the Empire. She was also in Planet of Twilight, written just a year later, where she was in charge of her own private fleet, and then disappeared yet again. Aside from a brief mention which stated she was believed to be dead in The New Essential Chronology, Daala would only appear in the form of several mentions during The New Jedi Order series until 2008, when Daala re-appeared in Death Star, a novel detailing the history and events surrounding the Death Star's construction. It gave deeper insights into Daala's relationship with Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin. Daala would later appear in the eighth book in the Legacy of the Force series, Legacy of the Force: Revelation, this time fighting alongside her former enemies as the head of yet another private fleet, created under relatively unknown circumstances. It was in this book that she finally received a first name, Natasi, over fourteen years after Daala was introduced to the Expanded Universe.
Describing the character, Anderson noted that in contrast to Thrawn, "[Daala's] a loose cannon, shoots first asks questions later," later indicating she could have very well been capable of controlling the Galactic Alliance decades later, comparing her to real life hotheaded politicians.
Notes and references
- Admiral Daala on Wikipedia