This will eventually be a full translation of this, as the current Mission to Myrkr article is rather short. It won't be fast, as I'm primarily a contributor over here, but fear not, it will be finished, someday (I'm aiming at November, but, you know, stuff). Please be patient. Of course, all suggestions, comments and/or grammar & factual corrections are welcome and appreciated.
Mission to Myrkr
- "This isn't a mission, it's a sacrifice."
- ―Han Solo
The Mission to Myrkr took place in 27 ABY, during the Yuuzhan Vong War, soon before the First Battle of Coruscant. After the capture of the Jedi Praxeum at Yavin 4, the extra-galactic invaders Yuuzhan Vong created the voxyn creatures, capable of sensing and locating Jedi, and deployed them all over the galaxy. The voxyn soon proved highly effective at hunting Jedi, and several of them were killed by them. Due to the dangerous nature of the voxyn, the Jedi aboard Eclipse Station voted for an assault force, composed of seventeen young Jedi under Anakin Solo's command, to go to the planet of Myrkr, place of origin of the voxyn, to end the threat destroying the voxyn queen, from which all of the other voxyn were cloned.
With help of Lando Calrissian, the Jedi were "captured" by the Yuuzhan Vong frigate Exquisite Death, which they commandeered to go to Myrkr. On orbit above the planet was the worldship Baanu Raas, home of the cloning lab, do the Jedi went down to its surface to take care of their mission. On the worldship the strike team rescued two Dark Jedi that helped them go though the training maze of the voxyn, however the two Darksiders stole the spaceship the Jedi planned to use in their own escape. Several Jedi died during the trek, and Anakin suffered a grievous amphistaff wound in his abdomen. After more than thirty hours of constant Yuuzhan Vong attacks by warriors under Nom Anor's command, who wanted to capture the Solo twins, the Jedi made it to the cloning lab.
Anakin Solo sacrificed his life at the lab gates so his companions could go on, and while several Jedi went with Jaina Solo to recover his body, Jacen Solo decided to finish the mission and kill the voxyn queen. The mysterous Vergere, aide to Nom Anor, helped Jacen kill the queen, but soon after she captured him for the Executor. The surviving Jedi stole Anor's frigate and escaped from the Myrkr system, achieving their mission, through at great cost. Thanks to the sacrifice of the fallen, the voxyn made no more victims among the New Jedi Order, and one year after the mission there were no remaining voxyn.
The Hunt for JediEdit
- "Give us your Jeedai. All of them without exception. Any species, any age, any stage of training. Hold them back, hide them, and you will see how your worlds will be treated."
- ―Tsavong Lah
During the final stage of the First Battle of Duro Tsavong Lah, Warmaster of the Yuuzhan Vong, dueled with the young Jedi Jacen Solo, because the Jedi's mother, Leia Organa Solo, had been brutally tortured by Lah's amphistaff. Jacen defeated Lah, and cut the Warmaster's foot in the process. Furious by the constant meddling of the Jedi in the Yuuzhan Vong's conquest of the galaxy, after conquering Duro Lah publicly addressed the citizens of the New Republic and proposed a truce, on the condition that the galaxy's inhabitants delivered all the "Jeedai" to the Yuuzhan Vong, not caring about their species, age of stage of training. Lah's ultimatum had partial success, as several Jedi were captured and delivered to the alien invaders.
The Peace Brigade, a collaborationist organization working on the Yuuzhan Vong's interests, attacked the Jedi Praxeum at Yavin 4 hoping to kill or capture many Jedi to gain the invaders' favor. New Republic Chief of State Borsk Fey'lya rejected Jedi Master Luke Skywalker's pleas for assistance, so Skywalker sent smuggler Talon Karrde to try to rescue the young students. Karrde pretended to ally with the Peace Brigade and used his pet vornskrs to locate the Jedi, whom he later helped to escape. The Peace Brigaders didn't knew about the vornskrs, and Karrde told them that they could locate Force-sensitive individuals; nevertheless, he also said that his were the only tame ones available, and added that it was dangerous to face wild ones. After the Brigader's failure to apprehend most of the Jedi on the Praxeum, Yuuzhan Vong Commander Tsaak Vootuh interrogated and executed them.
Yal Phaath's ShapingEdit
- "The new project awaits me, a shaping that will end the Jeedai threat forever."
- ―Yal Phaath
After the Praxeum's capture, the Yuuzhan Vong replaced it with a settlement of their own, including damuteks for the Shapers. During a visit to Master Shaper Mezhan Kwaad, her colleague Yal Phaath questioned her experiments with Jedi apprentice Tahiri Veila—the only Jeedai that the Peace Brigade could capture. Kwaad told him that Veila would be an answer to the Jedi, as she planned to make her a Yuuzhan Vong-Jedi hybrid at the service of the gods. Phaath reluctantly wished her success, but told her that he was busy on a new shaping that would forever end the Jeedai threat. Answering Kwaad's question, Phaath said that the "infidels" that served them had revealed the existence of a creature that could feel and hunt the Jeedai, and that a source in the Senate had informed them their homeworld. This planet, named Myrkr, was already in the Yuuzhan Vong's possession, and Yaal Phaath was tasked to overseer the shaping of these beasts, the vornskrs.
The Peace Brigaders were exceedingly interested in the vornskrs' ability at locating Force-sensitives and their apparent aggressive posture against the Jedi. The Yuuzhan Vong were also impressed by these traits, but the vornskrs would only be their starting pint. Yal Phaath's shapers discovered that the creature of their galaxy closest to the voxyn on a cellular level was the fearsome fero xyn predator, more intelligent than the voxyn and already tamed, and worked to join both genomes on a single being. the process was difficult, in part due to the old-fashioned Shaping Protocols and to Phaath's determination to avoid any kind of heresy, but the Shaper's efforts were succesful at the Koros-Strohna Baanu Rass' damuteks. Almost all the resultant creatures died-except one, much more powerful than the sum of its parts. The surviving creature, called voxyn, was a powerful predator tour meters long, with huge teeth and claws full of deadly retroviruses, a scaly damage-resistant skin, a roar that could shatter eardrums, the ability to spit acid, a venomous tail and spikes with toxic substances. Adding to its formidable stamina, the voxyn had a fast-healing ability and a strong vitality that allowed it to perform efficiently for long time. This beast was aggressive towards the Jedi, and its traits made it hard for Jedi to kill. The Shapers then cloned this voxyn, and produced dozens, perhaps hundreds of these deadly predators. Nevertheless, they has a critical vulnerability: they needed a nutritional compound only found on Myrkr to survive. The Yuuzhan Vong trained the voxyn to kill Jedi right there at Baanu Rass. Tsavong Lah was preparing his plan to take Coruscant, and he thought that putting a wedge between the Jedi and the New Republic would ease the conquest of the galactic capital. To that end, he had two plans: to use the voxyn against the Jedi, while his agent Nom Anor intimidate the New Republic using thousands of defenseless refugees so that they stop supporting the Jedi. Early in the year 27 ABY, voxyn were sent to several planets to hunt and kill any Jedi they could find. Meanwhile, yhe Yuuzhan Vong assembled huge numbers of refugee ships around the planet Talfaglio, and threatened to destroy them unless the Jedi revealed the location of their secret base.
The Voxyn AttacksEdit
The Nebula Chaser IncidentEdit
The first known confrontation between voxyn and Jedi was aboard the Corellian cruiser Nebula Chaser, carrying refugees from the recently devastated world of New Plympto. A resistance organization was formed on that planet to fight against the Yuuzhan Vong invaders, lead by the Twi'lek Jedi sisters Alema and Numa Rar,, with so mucho success that the Yuuzhan Vong decided to wipe out the planet's population with a biological weapon rather than spend resources in its pacification. The Rar sisters then boarded Captain Pollux's Nebula Chaser along with tousands of refugees form the doomed planet. The Twi'lek Jedi were to rendezvous with Mara Jade Skywalker and Jaina Solo in an insignificant star system in the Core, but before the planed meeting a Yuuzhan Vong frigate analog stopped the Chaser, and at least a hundred warriors boarded the ship looking for Jeedai. Mara and Jaina had to wait. The Peace Brigade had learned that the Jedi often traveled aboard refugee convoys, so the Yuuzhan Vong took voxyn with them to look for their enemies aboard such ships.
Inside Captain Pollux's private room, the Rar sisters used a datapad to monitor the situation. They detected aboard a strange lifeform that could feel the Force, something unheard of in a creature of the Yuuzhan Vong. Knowing that they were the object of the warriors' search, the young Jedi put on their dancer disguises and make up, while the Yuuzhan Vong leader interrogated Captain Pollux. At the warrior's command, the creature left the frigate analog and started to scent the Nebula Chaser, making Pollux nervous, so Alema decided to make a coded transmission to a Jedi channel to describe what was happening, just in case if they couldn't escape. Hearing the warrior's comments, Alema deduced that the creature's name was voxyn, and for an hour she and her sister watched how the voxyn tried to track them through the ship. They discovered that the voxyn seemed to know where were they, so the Jedi tried to hide their presence in the Force, as they thought that was how the voxyn was tracking them. The Rar sisters feared that the Yuuzhan Vong discovered that the Captain was lying about not having Jedi on board, so they left Pollux's quarters and went to the escape pods.
The sisters noticed that the creature always knew where they were, even though its sense of distance was poor. Numa suggested getting rid of their lightsabers to avoid being identified as Jedi, and Alema grudgingly accepted. They reached the escape pod deck, though the voxyn had followed them and was just a few meters behind. Alema activated a blast door's override controls to make it fall just over the voxyn, but the creature was so resilient it suffered no apparent damage, and tried to pass through the door. The Rar sisters made it to an escape pod and were ready to launch, when the blast door partially opened and the voxyn threw acid to Numa's face and roared towards Alema. Numa soon died of her injuries, and Alema released the escape pod hoping that the Yuuzhan Vong would pursue it instead of damaging the Chaser. Jaina recovered the pod, though the Nebula Chaser was later destroyed by the alien invaders, killing thousands of refugees.
In this stage of the war the Jedi were spread though the galaxy, usually in groups of 2 or 3 or even alone, so the voxyn could hunt and kill them with ease. After Alema Rar's recovery, two Jedi were killed by the creatures, one at the supposedly safe world of Kuat—it should be noted, however, that Kuat was the homeworld of Senator Viqi Shesh. The voxyn soon proved so be highly effective that the Yuuzhan Vong decided to use the Peace Brigade to ferry some of the creatures to Coruscant "to facilitate the peaceful surrender of the New Republic". Luke Skywalker asked Han and Leia Solo to go to Nova Station in the Carida system and wait for Booster Terrik's supplies, and while they were there a Weequay approached Han. The Weequay was Plaan, who had met Han on Tholatin when the hero of the Rebellion went there with the Ryn Droma to repair the Millenium Falcon, though he kew him by the name of "Miek". Plaan offered the Solos a job to help transport refugees on his ship, the Sweet Surprise, but Leia felt something shady on the Force, and she and Han declined the offer. With Plaan's proposes schedule, the Solos suspected that Coruscant was the destination, and Han warned Wedge Antilles, former Rogue Squadron leader, about the Surprise.
When the Solos reached Coruscant, Rogue Squadron was already on interception course for the Surprise. Rogue Leader Gavin Darklighter told Plaan to prepare for a "random inspection", though the Weequay got nervous and tried to run. The Surprise was disabled by orbital mines, and Leia felt hundreds of refugees aboard and a predatory presence she recognized as a voxyn. Gavin, the first to enter the derelict Surprise, told Leia that there four creatures inside, that although didn’t attacked them, were nonetheless blocking the air lock. Han moved the Falcon to dock with the Surprise, and Leia went to the cargo bay with her Noghri bodyguards, Adarakh and Meewalh. Her plan was to draw the voxyn towards her, trap them in the bay and then open it to the vacuum of space to freeze them to death. The creatures felt the trap and didn't move at first, though seconds later they charged towards Leia and the Noghri, and the bodyguards shot them with their blasters. The fist voxyn exploded and its blood, steamy and with a strong ammonia smell, hurt Leia and the Noghri. Leia managed to trap them in the bay before losing consciousness, and the Falcon took the voxyn to Eclipse, the secret base of the New Jedi Order in the Deep Core. The voxyn sealed themselves making a cocoon with their scales, and then they went into hibernation, and though eventually the cold of space killed them, they took a while to finally die.
Preparing the MissionEdit
On Eclipse, the Barabel Jedi Saba Sebatyne and the hatchmates Tesar Sebatyne and Bela and Krasov Hara felt through the Force that a voxyn had killed Master Eelysa on Corellia. Soon, another voxyn killed young Lusa on Chiron, Lyric died at the fangs of another, and Corran Horn and his wife Mirax barely escaped a voxyn on Corellia; Mara Jade later rescued them from an escape pod. The Jedi Healer Cilghal studied the voxyn that the Millenium Falcon had taken to Eclipse, and discovered few useful things. Cilghal, tired by her research, told several young Jedi, among them the siblings Jacen, Jaina and Anakin Solo, and Tenel Ka, Tahiri Veila, Zekk, Lowbacca and Raynar Thul, that most likely she was contaminating the samples, as the genetic information was always the same. Jaina and Tenel Ka suggested that the creatures could be clones, and as those four specimens were from the same shipping, Anakin decided to get samples from other voxyn, from other places in the galaxy. Cilgahl asked other Jedi to aid her, so Ganner Rhysode tracked the Sweet Surprise's route, Streen looked for suspicious omissions in the ship's log, and Cheklev kept several scientists busy analyzing the Sweet Surprise remains, while Anakin and his group went from planet to planet recovering voxyn corpses. The test results showed that the voxyn indeed were clones of a single specimen, dubbed the "voxyn queen" by the Jedi, and that their cellular structure was very unstable, and deteriorated fast: the creatures lived only a few months after their release. Cilghal announced that inside a voxyn she had found an ysalamiri, who had eaten plants that could only have come from Myrkr. With that information, the Jedi found out the place of origin of the voxyn. If the voxyn queen could be destroyed, it would be impossible to clone more voxyn.
The Jedi's DecisionEdit
- "We'll have a traitor turn us over to the Yuuzhan Vong on the pretext of buying time for the Talfaglion hostages. We'll set up a transfer for somewhere near Obroa-skai, let them cross the frontier, then take over the ship and fly to Myrkr."
- ―Anakin Solo's plan
While the Jedi considered this discovery, the tactical expert Bith Ulaha Kore hinted that the chances of success of a massive strike were less than 1%. Zekk suggested that a commando team might do the job, but Han reminded him that the hyperroutes to Myrkr were full of dovin basals acting as interdictors, a clear sign that the Yuuzhan Vong were protecting the planet form a Jedi raid. Anakin, in a typically reckless fashion, proposed a daring plan: that a "traitor" delivered them to the Yuuzhan Vong, and after crossing the border they would take over the ship and fly it to Myrkr. Seeing that Luke was seemingly considering the idea, Hand told him that the plan wouldn't work because they couldn't be sure of making it back alive. Luke accepted the plan, on the condition that he himself would lead the mission; nevertheless, Tenel Ka reminded him that the Yuuzhan Vong would kill any Jedi Master they had in their grasp, or would incapacitate him so he could not escape. Jacen argued that the plan would put the Talfaglion refugees on risk, and could even cause that the Yuuzhan Vong killed more refugees, while Han kept saying that it would be a suicide mission. Several Jedi expressed their opinions with so much candor, that Luke Skywalker decided that the mater be put to a vote between two choices: that the Jedi accepted the losses they would indubitably suffer at the hands of the voxyn hoping that this way the Yuuzhan Vong wouldn't kill more refugees, or destroy the voxyn queen and risk a likely reprisal. The decision was divided, so at the end it was Han who gave the deciding vote: going after the queen. Leia agreed, on the condition that Lando Calrissian would be the one who "delivered" the Jedi to the Yuuzhan Vong, as he was the only one who could make it work. He, a veteran hero, accepted the task.
The Strike TeamEdit
- "Anyone who wants to volunteer, see me later—after we've put together some kind of plan."
- ―Anakin Solo
The Jedi strike team was made of seventeen young Jedi, with combat expertise against the Yuuzhan Vong. The leader and Commander was Anakin Solo, whoo was in charge of detecting the Yuuzhan Vong through his unique Vongsense. The second in command was Jacen Solo, who would coordinate the group with his emphatic talent and could track the voxyn queen with his skill with animals. The third at command was Jaina Solo; her skills made the the strike team's pilot. Ganner Rhysode was the decoy leader, as he was the oldest Jedi on the team. Tenel Ka's talents made her a warrior in the team, and Zekk acted as a scavenger for useful equipment. Tahiri Veila, due to her experience at being near-shaped by the Yuuzhan Vong, knew the alien's language, and therefore acted as the translator. Raynar Thul performed support duties, and Alema Rar was in charge of infiltration and underground navigation. Jedi Healer Tekli was the team's medic, and Lowbacca's talents made him the biomechanical expert and sensor operator. Jovan Drark took sharpshooter duties, and Eryl Besa, thanks to her ability to use the Force to know where in the galaxy she was at a given time, would notify the team when they reached Myrkr. Ulaha Kore was the tactical analyst, and the hatchmates Tesar Sebatyne and Bela and Krasov Hara were the stealth experts and warriors of the team. Lando donated two of his new YVH-1 droids, YVH 2-1S and YVH 2-4S to assist the young Jedi on the mission. With the help of several Jedi, Han and Leia Solo and Lando, a plan with different variants was developed to carry out the mission. Eclipse's tacticians estimated that the mission's succes chance was 72%, which would decrease by 2% per standard hour.
- "We have only two concerns. The first is to complete our mission. The second is to return alive. "
- ―Alema Rar
- Lando: "Things are going to go wrong. No matter how many times we rehearse, no matter how well we plan, this isn't going to happen the way we expect. You'll need to react fast."
- Ganner: "No different from any battle."
- Lando: "This isn't a battle, Rhysode, get that into your head. You're not going as warriors, you're going as spies. You'll have to do things that don't sit well inside. You can't balk. You can't even hesitate."
- ―Lando Calrissian and Ganner Rhysode, to the strike team.[src]
Lando would act the role of a concerned citizen, a man called 'Fitzgibbon Lane' that would deliver the Jedi to the Yuuzhan Vong to protect his propierties. Aboard his luxury yacht Lady Luck, the strike team rehearsed the plan while Lando plotted a course to Obroa-skai to contact the Yuuzhan Vong. The general plan was that the crew would "surprise" the strike team when the Yuuzhan Vong arrived, so the aliens could capture the Jedi; meanwhile the droids would climb to the hull of the enemy ship to help free the team when they reached Myrkr. On the way, Lando made the Jedi rehearse again and again, and soon the young Jedi started an argument between those who believed that any action to destroy the voxyn was justified, and those who considered that such beliefs were of the dark side. Anakin realized that Lando knew that the team eventually would have had this argument, and he forced their hand so they could have it now and not later. Jacen was particularly against the notion that the ends justified the means, and Anakin thought that maybe his brother's talent with animals wasn't really worth the dissent he would cause in the team. Nevertheless, Jaina suggested that Jacen, with his high emphatic abilities, could mentally coordinate the team though the Force, enhancing their performance and preventing that the Jedi were "broken" by the Yuuzhan Vong. Anakin accepted, because he knew that if he sent Jacen back the rest of the team would fall apart. Besides, her sister's idea was a very good one, as Jacen has proved his worth with the Force meld months before on Dubrillion.
While the Jedi ate, the Yuuzhan Vong frigate analog Exquisite Death commanded by Duman Yaght reached Calrissian's ship, and a Yuuzhan Vong boarding party soon entered the Lady Luck. Yaght wanted to take out the Jedi right away, but Lando delayed him with promises of more Jedi if Tsavong Lah showed mercy to the Talfaglion refugees. According to the plan, Tendra Risant Calrissian and the chef Yarsroot went for the Jedi to take them before Yaght, "threatening" them with fire arms. Several Jedi thought that things were happening too fast, and felt fear or apprehension at what was going to happen. Jacen, as the battle meld coordinator, shared the determination and excitement of the other members of the team to those who felt insecure. Meanwhile things were going according to plan, and Anakin could feel the confidence of the team; he himself believed that everything was going to go very well. Just as the Jedi were going to be transferred to the Exquisite Death, they attacked their captors to distract them while the YVH 1 droids stationed themselves on the frigate's hull. Yaght said that he would open the air lock and kill everyone on board, and as Ulaha tried to stop him a warrior stuck a coufee in her back, puncturing her only lung. With the meld all the Jedi felt Ulaha's pain, and felt shock at what had seen, so the Yuuzhan Vong pacified them and the team surrendered. Anakin thought that perhaps the mission wasn't such a good idea after all, and felt the team's guilt, fear and anger, except for Alema, who was actually relieved at the fact that nobody had died yet. Anakin had the hopes that the seasoned gambler Lando Calrissian could convince Yaght to leave Ulaha with him, but he had no chance. Lando had the choice to help Ulaha right then, knowing that doing so would forfeit the mission, or continue with the plan, in which case Ulaha would likely die. Nonetheless, he knew that the mission was too important, and he let things go on. Jacen got angry with Lando, but he knew that begging Anakin to do something with Ulaha would do no good: his brother had already warned him that he wouldn't hesitate leaving him behind if he didn't accept the exigencies of sabotage.
Aboard the Exquisite DeathEdit
Danni Quee, one of the first beings in the galaxy to make contact with the Yuuzhan Vong, witnessed how the invaders used the "breaking" on a Jedi Knight, Miko Reglia. The breaking was to repeatedly subject the victim to near-death experiences, so he or she would be at the mercy of the Yuuzhan Vong, the only ones who could stop the torture and save the victim, so the victim would submit to them. Duman Yaght proceeded to break the strike team, torturing them one by one with a voxyn. The Yuuzhan Vong kept Ganner apart, as they thought he was the team leader, but the rest of the Jedi were kept together, and suffered the breaking at least once. However, Yaght enjoyed torturing Ulaha more that anyone else. The Force meld technique joined the minds of the Jedi, so they could share their strength with whoever was being tortured, so for a while the breaking didn't work.
Yaght demanded that Ulaha admitted the existence of the Jedi base, and when the weakened Bith did it, Jaina Solo asked Yaght to let her rest. The Yuuzhan Vong commander agreed, but told Jaina that now she was in control, and asked Jaina to choose who was going to be tortured next: either Anakin or Jacen. Jacen chose herself, but Yaght wouldn't allow it, so she had to pick Anakin. The youngest Solo stoically resisted his tortures, and Jaina realized that Yaght's intention hadn't been breaking Ulaha, but the entire strike team, and she had been the first to give in. Jaina confessed that the Jedi base was in the Core, and Yaght allowed Anakin to return with his companions. Anakin whispered something to Ulaha, who then attacked her captors and the voxyn, with an uncanny speed in someone so wounded, and killed the creature. Yaght threatened Jaina if she did something else, and she coolly told him that he would be the one to die. The commander, who knew that the Jedi would find the way to kill other voxyn at their reach, ordered his pilots to increase the ship's speed.
- "The Jeedai mind is growing clearer to me. They will keep a low profile, then strike when their captor has grown complacent."
- ―Tsavong Lah
After some time of rest, in which the Jedi were tied by blorash jelly, Anakin told the droids to activate escape. YVH 2-1S y YVH 2-4S did so, throwing coma gas aboard the Exquisite Death to neutralize the crew so they could free the Jedi. 2-1S informed Anakin of the state of the ship, and delivered the strike team their equipment and lightsabers. As Anakin's lightsaber had a lambent crystal, he was the only one who could sense the Yuuzhan Vong in the Force, and knew that many of them were still conscious. Tekli, the team’s medic, healed the Jedi the best she could with bacta patches, and when they rested enough, Anakin divided them in two teams, attack and support. Jacen opened the battle meld; Anakin felt his reserve and regretted not having sent him back when he had the chance, but right then it was imperative to mind the task at hand. 2-1S informed that he had set mines that were in turn activated by voxyn, and that the survival probability of the voxyn was minimal. Anakin's team, assault, discovered that several warriors were planning to use Ganner as bait, and Anakin decided to prevent the ambush. Jacen accused Anakin of using others, first Ulaha and now Ganner, and his brother's words deeply wounded Anakin. The youngest Solo told Jacen that he told Ulaha to yield, not to attack, and shocked by how his lack of trust had hurt his brother, Jacen tried to apologize. Nevertheless, an apology wouldn't erase Jacen's doubt of Anakin's judgment, increasing the tension in the siblings' relationship.
Both teams kept on advancing, and constantly dispatched small groups of warriors. Support team went hunting a grievously wounded voxyn that was still a threat. 2-1S had been seriously damaged, but before resting he said that the enemy kept Ganner imprisoned on the bridge. Commander Yaght was alone, threatening the unconscious Rhysode, and as he refused to surrender the Jedi killed him. The strike team spent the rest of the team recovering from their wounds, preparing for the mission and researching the frigate's capabilities. Jacen felt bad for having doubted Anakin, but Tenel Ka comforted him, and Zekk found replacements for some of 2-1S's damaged systems. Meanwhile, the three Barabels tracked the second voxyn, though the Exquisite Death reached the Myrkr system before they could finish it. Eryl Besa told her companions that they had reached Myrkr, though it looked as if the planet had acquired a new moon: the huge Koros-Strohna worldship Baanu Raas, one hundred and twenty kilometers wide, the largest worlship the Yuuzhan Vong had.
Tsavong Lah's PlanEdit
Tsavong Lah sent Nom Anor to Coruscant to discuss the Talfaglion refugees issue on the Senate, and the Executor announced the galaxy that a concerned citizen had delivered 17 young Jedi the previous day. When he said that one of the captured Jedi was a Solo, he found out that Jacen and Jaina were twins. Chief of State Borsk Fey'lya tried to arrest Anor, but the Cléber Ejecutor managed to escape. Meanwhile Vergere, Tsavong Lah's advisor, explained the game of dejarik to the warmaster, telling him that it was a traditional Jedi game, so they engaged in several games so the warmaster could learn how his enemies thought. Though dejarik Lah predicted that the Jedi would escape the Exquisite Death, and Vergere told him they would attack what they feared most. When Tsavong Lah found out that Jacen and Jaina Solo were twins, he developed an idea that would obsess him: capture them both and make them fight, to sacrifice them afterwards to the Yuuzhan Vong gods. Lah sent Anor to the worlship Baanu Raas orbiting Myrkr, because there was the location of the voxyn cloning facility, what the Jedi feared most. Lah told Anor to take Vergere as his partner, as he was tired of the petty rivalry between his two advisors, and told them that now they would succeed or fail together. The warmaster didn't care much about the other Jedi, but demanded the capture of the Solo twins, alive. Anor, disgusted at the thought of working alongside Vergere, took the frigate Ksstarr and went to Myrkr.
The Baanu RaasEdit
The strike team approached Myrkr, and Anakin was shocked to feel a Jedi presence aboard the huge worldship, so they no longer could use Plan A: destroy the cloning facility from afar using a baradium missile. Alema mentioned that during a frontal strike more Jedi lives would be lost than at a long range attack, but Anakin told everyone to go to their battle stations, thinking that it would be best to wait and see what happened. The Jedi discovered that the worldship was almost abandoned, and soon a Yuuzhan vong matalok approached the Exquisite Death; its commander demanded the surrender of the Jedi. Anakin ordered the firing of the baradium missile that obliterated the matalok, and afterwards the young Solo told the other Jedi his plan, a variant of Plan D. Ulaha asked to stay aboard the Exquisite Death, as according to her Anakin's plan had a 21% chance of success with a casualties projection of more than 90%; if they let her stay at the ship they would no longer have to take care of her, and the team's probability of success would raise to almost 50%. Anakin told her to drop the escape pods and then flee the system, and made that an order. Ulaha had one final request: a small metal tube. The Jedi readied themselves while enemy ships extended tentacles to catch the Exquisite Death: the Yuuzhan vong still wanted to capture them alive.
The strike team descended to the Baanu Raas aboard pods they had disguised as bombs, so the Yuuzhan vong thought it was a bombardment and not a Jedi strike team. Most of the Yuuzhan vong pursuer ships went after the Exquisite Death and caught 2-1S, who blew itself up to destroy three enemy corvettes. Ulaha started to play music with the piece of metal tubing she had requested, as if it were a flute, and when the music ended her Jedi companions knew she had died. On the surface of the Baanu Raas, the strike team began its journey to the cloning labs. Anakin, affected as everyone else by Ulaha's death, thought that maybe going after the voxyn queen hadn't been such a good idea after all. Nevertheless, the strike team had a very good coordination thanks to the battle meld, and the Jedi had the intention of looking for the Jedi prisoners aboard the worldship to rescue them. After finding an area with many ysalamiri, the Jedi knew that their colleagues were there, and faced several warriors that were guarding the place. Two humans, a male and a female, were caged and kept by a female shaper.
The woman used a Force energy net to cut the shaper to pieces, which horrified the Jedi that had gone to rescue her, with the exception of Alema, who asked the woman if she could teach her the technique. The trapped Jedi revealed themselves as two Dark Jedi, Lomi Plo and Welk, whom Zekk had known during his time at the Shadow Academy. Unknown to the strike team, Lomi and Welk were not only Dark Jedi, but members of the New Sith Order. Lomi Plo offered her help to destroy the voxyn queen, as she knew the Baanu Raas better that the Jedi. Before Anakin could answer, his companions told him that a new ship had arrived at the spaceport, carrying Nom Anor. The Jedi were surprised at the sight of the strange feathered creature accompanying Nom Anor, and Jacen felt that the creature had perceived them. Jaina told her companions that the creature was Vergere, who took part in the Yuuzhan Vong Priestess Elan's plot to kill the Jedi leaders, but also that she gave Han Solo the tears that helped treat Mara Jade Skywalker's mysterious illness. Noting that Nom Anor had taken a hundred warriors, who were blocking their way, Lomi Plo suggested to go to the cloning lab through the training maze, a dangerous way but less dangerous than the spaceport. Anakin nodded, but Zekk protested, claiming that Anakin couldn't trust Dark Jedi, much less follow them. Nonetheless, Jacen supported his brother's decision, suggesting that leaving behind Lomi and Welk would be like killing them, or worse. That discord in the team caused by the Dark Jedi's presence directly affected the efficiency of the battle meld.
Ambush in the SwampEdit
The strike team went down to a swampy area with a dense forest. 2-4S indicated that coralskippers were approaching, and Anakin ordered him to secure the intersection. The droid eliminated his two opponents, but he himself was destroyed; the Jedi suddenly felt vulnerable, as their two protectors were now gone. The coralskippers had thrown a dense fog to the place where the Jedi were, and several voxyn attacked the team underwater. The group killed some of them with grenades, but were dismayed when they found that Nom Anor, Vergere and a hundred Yuuzhan Vong warriors went to block the exit. Several Jedi though that things couldn't get worse, but Anakin's plan was to ambush the Yuuzhan Vong. The Jedi climbed the trees and from the high ground killed many of their opponents, but the warriors still outnumbered them. Jacen told Anakin that he could use the voxyn to attack the Yuuzhan Vong, using his emphatic talents with the animals, and his brother accepted his idea. Soon Jacen stopped concentrating on the meld—that wasn't as harmonious as before—and drew the voxyn to the swamp. The creatures attacked the Yuuzhan Vong by surprise, and soon the strike team shot just at the voxyn. Several Jedi, including Anakin and Tahiri, were impressed by Jacen's tactic, as undoubtedly he had saved more than one Jedi's life. Even so, Jacen didn't felt as good, as he has manipulated living things and driven them to their deaths. He thought that maybe Zekk was right, and the mere presence of the Dark Jedi was enoough to taint the strike team.
The Slave CityEdit
- "The trainers are very thorough. They keep an entire city of slaves to operate captured equipment so they can habituate their voxyn to 'lifeless abhorrences'. There is nothing they will not do to rid the galaxy of Jedi."
- ―Lomi Plo
The strike team spent thirty hours passing through the training maze, carefully to avoid being caught by enemy search patrols. The training maze had been designed by the Yuuzhan Vong to simulate diverse environmental conditions of the galaxy that the voxyn would face while hunting Jedi, so the extragalactic invaders created a city with buildings, walkways, streets, corridors, structures and even technology, like spaceships and landspeeders—though without enough energy to be a threat. To operate this "lifeless abhorrences", the Yuuzhan Vong filled it with captured slaves. The shapers had installed security systems, from simple alarms to lethal traps, mechanical as well as natural (fire, water, electricity), to select the voxyn that performed best on those conditions. Lomi Plo mentioned this to the strike team, but even though the city was full of perils, Anakin knew the best way to the cloning lab was through it. Just inside the city Jaina found an old AT-AT, and Zekk told her that there was a tourist cruiser on the hangar, though there wasn't time to try to repair it; what they least wanted was to give the Yuuzhan Vong even more time to react.
Lowbacca looked for gas masks inside the AT-AT, while Jovan assisted him; nevertheless an unexpected flitnat attack left them swollen and unconscious. Anakin, unconcerned by the time it had taken the Jedi to go though the training maze, suggested his companions to leave the AT-AT, as in just a few hours the mission would be over and they would all return home. Anakin was optimistic because, after all the setbacks and difficulties, the team had only lost Ulaha and the droids, and he was convinced that even a Yuuzhan vong worldship couldn't stop a platoon of well-trained Jedi. Nevertheless, Jaina was more cautious, as she knew plans could go wrong even to the best, and always in the worst time. Jaina thought that even the famous Wraith Squadron would have given up already, though Anakin said that if the strike team needed an evac, then the Jedi, and by extension the New Republic, were already doomed. Soon after that the team lost contact with Jovan and Lowbacca, who were bitten by a swarm of insects; with Tekli's help they recovered. At the same time, the Jedi realized that it was likely that the Yuuzhan Vong tried to ambush them, so they started to retreat.
Ambush at the Slave CityEdit
- Jaina: "If this is a trap, they'll be coming for us."
- Anakin: "So what if they are? We're Jedi, aren't we?"
- Lomi Plo: "The value of sacrifices has a limit even to a Yuuzhan Vong. They will kill us before allowing us to reach the cloning lab. We must go around."
- ―Jaina Solo, Anakin Solo and Lomi Plo[src]
During their retreat, the Jedi tried to enter the cloning lab, only a short distance away, but failed several times. The closer they got to the lab, the more voxyn were to attack them, so the team was spending fast their remaining ammo. By then the battle meld was full of restlessness and discord, and its only function was simply check that everyone was still alive. Lomi told Anakin that if they couldn't enter the voxyn's lair then he should contact their extract team, and Anakin revealed that there wasn't such team, and the only escape plan was to kill the voxyn queen and then steal a ship. Soon the Jedi found themselves in a part of the city full of slaves of many species, where Yuuzhan Vong disguised as humans ambushed them. In the ensuing confusion Eryl Besa was killed when a razor bug sliced her face, to Raynar's despair, who during the mission had formed a close bond with her. Anakin wondered why the Yuuzhan Vong were throwing razor bugs now, if Nom Anor had been trying to capture the Jedi alive. Quickly he answered himself: because now the strike team had a real chance of reaching the cloning labs. Soon Jovan Drark was also killed, and when Anakin saw his sister Jaina facing two warriors, weakened by blorash jelly on one side, he rashly jumped to rescue her, though one of the warriors impaled his amphistaff on Anakin's belly. Immediately his companions worried about him, and the team had to retreat with two more casualties and a grievously wounded commander. Leia Organa Solo, on the remote Black Bantha Nebula, felt her younger son's wound through the Force.
Escape to the TunnelsEdit
Nom Anor intensified the assault, though he didn't change his tactics: he still wanted to capture as many Jedi as he could, and sent waves of warriors after the strike team so the Jedi spend their munitions. Jaina reprimanded Anakin for his foolhardy act, reminding him that everyone knew that they could die during the mission, and they had to focus if they wanted to stay alive. Nom Anor demanded the Jedi's surrender, and Anakin alarmed all because he seemed to consider it, so Tenel Ka reminded him that the Jedi would rather face death than capture. Tekli asked the team to stop so she could check Anakin, while well-trained voxyn were looking for them. Jacen used this time to reconcile with his brother, and Tekli warned the youngest Solo that he urgently needed a healing trance, as his spleen had been punctured. The Jedi startled, as healing trances took hours or even days, and there wasn't a way for Anakin to enter a healing trance with thousands of Yuuzhan Vong and the mission still ongoing. Anakin feared, not for himself but for his companions, as it was his wound that was risking their lives. Anakin ordered a hasty retreat, but as the Yuuzhan Vong kept attacking them, Bela Hara was fatally wounded by an amphistaff. Anakin swore that no more Jedi would die for him, not even Dark Jedi, while the strike team could only withdraw before the relentless advance of Nom Anor's warriors. Alema noted that the team had been walking in circles, and that the tunnels they regularly saw could be shortcuts to the lab. The Jedi decided to take their chances inside the tunnels, no doubt full of voxyn, as Lomi had warned them that there was a gate kept by numerous guards that blocked their way.
- Tahiri: "You're still team leader."
- Anakin: "Some leader."
- Tahiri: "What's that supposed to mean?
Anakin: "I keep people getting killed."
Tahiri: "People are getting killed. Who says it's your fault?"
Anakin: "I do. They do.
Tahiri: Neg that! They just want you to get us out of here. So do I. Think of something—fast."
- ―Tahiri Veila and Anakin Solo[src]
In spite of everything, the strike team was still mobile and with chances to kill the voxyn queen. Reacting to Anakin's wound, the strike team had united again, and the battle meld was effective as before, though Zekk still resented the Dark Jedi presence, and everybody was worried about Anakin. Feral voxyn dwelled inside the fetid tunnels, savage creatures that couldn't be trained, and were abandoned by the shapers. The creatures constantly ambushed them, and the team by then was running low on grenades and ammo. The Jedi reached a kind of amphitheater or arena, where the Yuuzhan Vong made religious ceremonies during their long journey through the Intergalactic Void. Several voxyn were inside, and Jacen deducted that they were defending their nests; even though they were clones, they still had instincts, and if the Jedi didn't threatened them, they wouldn't attack. Jacen used his emphatic abilities to calm the creatures, and Anakin thanked Jacen's skill, as now the team wouldn't have to worry about the voxyn. The Jedi took some time to rest, but soon a voxyn surprised them and threw acid to Krasov Hara's face, melting her scales and badly wounding her. Many voxyn attacked the Jedi from both sides, and Jaina told Anakin to stay away. She wanted to protect him so he wouldn't be hurt again, but Anakin thought that he undoubtedly had failed as a leader if his own sister refused to fight at his side. Raynar was wounded by a voxyn's poisonous tail, and Anakin decided that the Jedi had to get out of the arena if they wanted to stay alive. Krasov, blinded by the acid, asked to cover the retreat, and held a detonator that exploded while her companions ran away from hundreds of voxyn.
The explosion destroyed forty meters of wall, and countless tons of yorik coral fell to the arena's floor. Anakin would have been killed by a voxyn, but Welk saved him by Force-choking the creature; Anakin had to ask Tesar to share his strength, as he felt weaker with every passing moment. Soon after that Raynar saw a voxyn taking Eryl's body to a tunnel, and when he tried to rescue it the voxyn attacked the Jedi and wounded him deeply in the chest. In spite of everything, the strike team successfully entered the voxyn lair, and while Lowbacca and Tesar made a hole in a meter-deep wall of yorik coral, Anakin could rest. Behind the barricade the Jedi saw that the Force finally smiled on them: there was a warehouse full of captured equipment, even a damaged light freighter, the Tachyon Flier. The Jedi put the unconscious Raynar Thul aboard the freighter, and Lowbacca announced that he would have the Flier ready to launch before the team attacked the queen. Jacen felt a presence, which he thought could be the voxyn queen: the strike team was getting near their target.
Nevertheless, while the Wookiee Jedi was making the final adjustments to the Tachyon Flier, Lomi Plo and Welk tricked him and stole the ship so they could escape; however, they spared Lowbacca. Anakin was explaining his plan to the rest of the team, when they saw that the Flier rising from the Baanu Raas, chased by coralskippers and Nom Anor's frigate. The Jedi worried, but Anakin—feeling surprisingly calm and focused on the mission—reminded them that without the Dark Jedi the team wouldn't have been able to reach that place, and that Welk had indeed saved his life on the arena. Alema mentioned that she hoped that the Yuuzhan Vong caught the ship, though Tenel Ka reminded her that Raynar was still aboard the Flier. Soon after that the Jedi sensed a ripple in the Force, perhaps Raynar's death, but they felt nothing more.
Anakin told their friends that they had to act, the fact that their escape ship had been stolen notwithstanding. Nevertheless, his wound slowed him down, even with Tesar's shared strength, and Jaina told him to look for a place to enter a healing trance, as he was endangering the others with his slow pace. Anakin by then knew that he would likely die, but hadn't thought that he could jeopardize others, so he accepted his sister's advice. On the other hand, as the Jedi had begun their assault to the cloning labs, there were Yuuzhan Vong everywhere, and Anakin fought multitudes of enemies, just as the rest of the strike team. Jacen restarted the battle meld to coordinate the Jedi attack, but felt shocked at the anger and hate felt by his friends. Tesar fell unconscious by an amphistaff strike, while the rest of the Jedi were running low on ammo. Tekli soon went to help the Barabel, and Anakin ordered Tahiri to assist the healer, but she didn't want to leave Anakin alone. Nevertheless, Tahiri couldn't refuse to help, so she tilted to kiss Anakin, only to back away at the last moment: she told him that he had to come back for that.
Anakin Solo's fateEdit
The Yuuzhan Vong began to use magma spitters as artillery, as Anakin grew progressively weaker. On the lab the strike team found another captured Jedi, actually Nom Anor in disguise, who arrived to the voxyn queen's cage and freed her, so she could escape to the abandoned tunnels surrounding the lab. The Jedi that still had ammo kept shooting at the waves of enemy warriors, while Jaina ordered a charge. At the lab's gate, Anakin knew what the force had planned for him, and ordered the strike team to go after the queen, while he chased Nom Anor. Embracing his positive emotions, the love he felt for his family and his Jedi companions, he became one with the Force and his body started to glow softly, as his cells burned. So powerful was his union with the Force that he was aware of everything happening in the grashal, and he could even feel the Yuuzhan Vong in the Force as clearly as he felt his friends, something unprecedented. Anakin ran while shooting, his shots always hitting their intended target, while the Jedi found out about the voxyn queen's escape. Anakin told Jacen by comlink that he was now on charge of the mission, and that the path to the queen would get clear.
Jacen and Jaina, with tears in their eyes, watched as their younger brother got surrounded by scores of warriors, which he quickly dispatched: every one of his strikes was lethal. His Force sense guided him towards Nom Anor, who carried voxyn genetic samples, enough to clone a million creatures. Anakin reached his balance point: he knew that if he let Nom Anor go he had a chance of survival, though the Yuuzhan Vong would undoubtedly clone more voxyn, but if he tried to destroy the genetic samples he would be cut off from the rest of the team. The Yuuzhan Vong had strict orders not to kill Jacen and Jaina, but had no such compunctions about killing the youngest Solo. Anakin then made his decision, and lifted with his hand his last thermal detonator so his brothers could see it. Telepathically he told them to go, and told Jacen to kiss Tahiri for him. Anakin then threw the detonator towards Nom Anor, who recognized the silver sphere and ran. Anakin by then was very weak and surrounded by warriors, and an amphistaff strike in his ribs made him drop his lightsaber. The voxyn samples were destroyed in the explosion, and the Yuuzhan Vong warriors then killed Anakin.
Anakin's death was felt by several Jedi thorough the galaxy. On Eclipse, Luke Skywalker felt physically the pain of Anakin's death, so his wife Mara Jade told him to try to compose himself, as their newborn son Ben could feel his father's suffering through the Force. Luke was devastated, and blamed himself for the strike team's deaths, as he had been the one who sent them to Myrkr. Meanwhile, as Coruscant was getting ready for an imminent Yuuzhan Vong assault, Leia Organa Solo felt the death of her youngest son, and she barely had the strength to tell Han. Anakin's loss paralyzed Leia during the first stages of the Battle of Coruscant, and Han, who hadn't completely reconciled with Anakin over Chewbacca's death, decided that he would be with Leia, instead of running away as he had done when his best friend died.
Anakin's death had a deep negative impact on the strike team members, most of all Jaina; while everyone else kept arguing about what to do next, she was silent and furious. Some Jedi said that the only way to complete the mission and make sure that Anakin's sacrifice wasn't in vain was to use the dark side of the Force. Anakin's death had filled the strike team with negative emotions, anger, pain, fear, and they wanted to put those feelings to use. Jacen tried to dissuade them, but Jaina interrupted him and said that their brother had put him in charge, and Jacen had abandoned him. Jacen tried to remind her that there was no way they could possibly save Anakin, but Jaina wasn't in the mood for excuses. Lowbacca, incommunicado since the Dark Jedi stole the Tachyon Flier, at last could contact his friends and informed them that the Yuuzhan Vong had Anakin's body. Jaina decided to recover it, but Jacen reminded her that they still had a mission to accomplish. Tahiri, Alema, Lowbacca and Zekk followed Jaina, so the others could kill the voxyn queen. Jacen, who knew that the usually level-headed Jaina could not endure their younger brother's death, wondered why he wasn't ravaged by guilt.
Jaina Solo's AngerEdit
Jaina and her team, frustrated and angry, ambushed a platoon of Yuuzhan Vong and stole a transport with ease. The crew was captured and interrogated, but when the wounded prisoners refused to give Jaina Nom Anor's location she left them to die, getting dangerously close to the dark side and completely forgetting the purpose of the mission. The only thing she cared about then was to find the vermin that had poisoned her aunt, killed her father's best friend, and murdered her younger brother. Jaina's group reached an amphitheater where the Yuuzhan Vong took their dead, and there the Jedi killed more Yuuzhan Vong with their blasters. Jaina was about to kill Vergere, but Zekk stopped her, saying that the strange feathered creature so far hadn't damaged the strike team in any way. When a group of warriors that had Anakin's body challenged Jaina, she took Alema and rescued her brother, while she allowed her body to be flooded with dark side energy, which she used to destroy with lightning the torso of the officer carrying Anakin. Jaina saw that Vergere looked at her with consternation, and she threw lightning at the avian creature, though Vergere escaped. Soon Alema told Jaina that the others were aboard the shuttle, so she went to pilot it.
Huntig the QueenEdit
Jacen, Tesar, Ganner, Tekli and Tenel Ka followed the queen's trail and found her near a grotto full with juvenile amphistaffs, though soon Nom Anor's frigate blocked their way, and the Jedi had to hide. Nom Anor, Vergere and a company of warriors came from the frigate. Jacen knew that frigates of that size usually carried three assault companies; so far the strike team had destroyed one and decimated the other two, so it was likely that the executor's forces were either worldship personnel or the frigate's crew, warriors with insufficient combat experience to endanger the Jedi. Vergere told Nom Anor that she had seen Jaina and several Jedi, probably all of them, steal a ship and escape, and speculated that they could be halfway out of the system by then. Enraged, Nom Anor knew that all he had left was to collect the voxyn queen and report his failure to Tsavong Lah. Vergere didn't tell Anor that she had just seen Jacen Solo and his companions hiding. Jacen knew he had to wait for a good chance to go after the queen, and he could've waited forever, as he had promised Anakin, though realistically he knew he had to act soon or they would lose their opportunity.
Jaina piloted the shuttle and attacked Anor's frigate on the surface, killing the Yuuzhan Vong nearby. Thanks to her, the Yuuzhan Vong that blocked the way died or retreated, leaving the way open to Jacen and his team. Nonetheless, when Jacen tried to join her trough the bond they shared as twins, he felt focus on the task at hand but also anger, that faded away until Jacen could no longer feel his sister. Soon after that the executor and the warriors retreated towards the frigate, and Vergere called Jacen with Anakin's comlink, reminding him that he still had to kill the queen. Meanwhile, aboard the transport, Zekk discovered that Nom Anor still was trying to capture them alive.
The Yuuzhan Vong had already found the voxyn queen and they took her to the frigate, escorted by warriors and a shaper. Jacen used his emphatic talent to make the queen attack her escorts, and she killed all but four guards; Vergere approved of this action by Jacen. The Jedi didn't trust her, but they'd rather kept her close for fear that she might report their location to the Yuuzhan Vong if they let her go. Vergere had recovered Anakin's lightsaber, and now Jacen carried it. Jacen's team reached a crater with dovin basals at the bottom, which Jacen felt were suffering. From the crater they saw Jaina's shuttle, shot down over a dead zone, still firing. The Jedi realized that it would be easier for the Yuuzhan Vong to destroy the downed ship, but as the aliens wanted to take them alive, they still were sending infantry to catch them. Vergere revealed to Jacen's group Tsavong Lah's plan to sacrifice both Solo twins to the Yuuzhan Vong gods in exchange of the conquest of Coruscant, and told the young Jedi that they could not win two battles: either they rescued their companions or killed the queen. Nevertheless, Jacen had a plan, and he decided to attack the queen alone while his friends captured the enemy frigate on the surface. Jacen cut off the battle meld to focus on the queen, while the rest of the Jedi left; Tenel Ka stepped over to kiss Jacen, but Vergere cut her off. Jacen then went after the queen, while the rest of his friends covered him from the distance.
Jacen Solo's CaptureEdit
Whereas her offspring were trained to hunt Jedi, the voxyn queen was qualified only to preserve her own life. Tenel Ka commed Jacen and told him that everything was ready to escape, and that Vergere was following him. Jacen pursued the queen and wounded her grievously with his lightsaber, but a shaper attacked him and tore apart his gas mask, needed in that part of the worldship, before being consumed by a nearby dovin basal. Jacen, sick by the gas, didn't wanted to kill the queen—he'd never wanted to kill an animal in his life—but he knew that he had a mission to accomplish. Meanwhile the frigate, which Vergere had identified as the Ksstarr, took off to fight a Yuuzhan Vong flotilla dispatched to stop it. Vergere reached Jacen while he was fighting the queen, and both beast and Jedi injured each other, but in the end the queen accidentally touched the dovin basal and was consumed as the shaper was, ending at last the threat. Jaina tried to communicate with Jacen, but he was too weak and couldn't answer. Vergere took the comlink and told the Jedi that there was nothing else they could do, so it was now time for them to go. Jacen asked Vergere to hide him until the strike team could rescue him, but she refused to do so, and called Nom Anor to give him the young Jedi. Jacen remembered the tortures the Jedi has suffered aboard the Exquisite Death and trembled, though he reminded himself that the Jedi were safe, and compared to that his pain would be nothing. Suddenly he felt a tear in his cheek, and saw that Vergere was crying and she confessed that she was crying for him.
Escape from MyrkrEdit
- "We'll be back, Jacen. You hold on. We'll come for you. "
- ―Jaina Solo
Vergere contacted priest Harrar and told him that their ruse had worked, as Jacen Solo was now a prisoner of the Yuuzhan Vong. The rest of the Jedi went to where Jacen was, and they saw that the young Solo had Nom Anor's knife at his throat. All set to risk the whole team to rescue a single Jedi, his friends prepare to land, but Jacen, not wanting any more Jedi deaths in his conscience, waves them off. The last thing Jacen saw of the rest of the Jedi strike team was the gaze of his sister, set on him, and the darkness he saw in her eyes filled him with fear. Jacen knew that Anakin's death and his own capture opened up Jaina's heart to the dark side. The strike team piloted the frigate and defended it the best they could, but a handful of Jedi couldn't replace a crew of hundreds, so little by little the enemy ships were driving the Ksstarr away from the Baanu Raas. Soon a dozen vessels blocked the Ksstarrs way, and Jaina had to take the difficult decision of running away and leave Jacen to the enemy, though she swore that she would rescue him, even though she had to do it herself, as Anakin had rescued Tahiri on Yavin 4.
Harrar and Khalee Lah—son of the feared Tsavong Lah—were sent to Myrkr to secure the capture of the Jeedai. Nom Anor informed them that the Ksstarr would certainly be captured, as the Yuuzhan Vong ships had her surrounded. Jaina couldn't feel the twin bond she shared with Jacen, so she concluded that he had been killed, an impossible thing as she hadn't felt it, but even the she couldn't find another explanation. Overran with grief and anger, she took control of the frigate and plotted a course to Coruscant. The rest of the Jedi warned her that the New Republic would shoot without any Yuuzhan Vong ship that snooped around the Coruscant system, but she thought that she would be able to perform maneuvers that the keepers of the control towers would know. The Ksstarr soon jumped to hyperspace, leaving the Yuuzhan Vong without one of the twins. The strike team thought that maybe that way the Yuuzhan Vong would delay the sacrifice, so they could have a chance to rescue Jacen. Arriving at Coruscant, the nine survivors of the Jedi strike team discovered that the New Republic's capital world has been conquered by the invaders, so they had to go to the Hapes Cluster to rest and plan their next move.
As the Mission to Myrkr was successful, the Yuuzhan Vong couldn't create more voxyn, their best weapon against the Jedi, and hat to settle for the ones they already had. Due to their cellular structure these voxyn had very limited lifespans, and the Yuuzhan Vong used them only sparingly after the mission. In 27.5 ABY, after Tsavong Lah heard rumors of infiltrated Jedi on the recently conquered Coruscant, he dispatched several voxyn to assist in their capture; they were by then weak and dying, but still had enough energy to hunt and kill Jedi. All the voxyn deployed during this mission were killed by the insane Dark Jedi Lord Nyax. One year after the Mission to Myrkr, Warmaster Tsavong Lah was drawn into a trap by the New Republic on the remote moon of Ebaq 9 in the Deep Core. Lah took the last six remaining voxyn, extremely weak by then, and when dozens of Jedi arrived at Ebaq to consolidate the trap, their presences silenced the voxyn. These voxyn were used to hunt Jaina Solo and their companions Lowbacca and Tesar Sebatyne of Twin Suns Squadron when they hided deep inside a bunker on Ebaq 9, but Vergere sacrificed herself destroying the hangar and burning all the oxygen available. Of the ten thousand warriors Lah had taken with him, he was the only survivor, and even then he was soon after that killed by Jaina Solo. The voxyn died during the decompression.
The mission to Myrkr was included in the mythic cycle of the Jeedai heresy, the belief among the lower Yuuzhan Vong castes (some Shamed Ones and workers) that the Jedi were not their enemies, but the key to their redemption. The Jeedai heresy had formed after Anakin Solo and Vua Rapuung's rescue of Tahiri Veila on Yavin 4, and the heretics considered that Rapuung had been redeemed before dying by the actions of Anakin. After the disaster at Ebaq 9 Supreme Overlord Shimrra Jamaane demanded Nom Anor's head, who had given misleading information that ended in the deaths of thousands of Yuuzhan Vong and dozens of warships, and Anor escaped to hide among the Shamed Ones. Soon he assumed the identity of the Prophet Yu'Shaa, and told many times the story of Anakin Solo's sacrifice during the Mission to Myrkr.
New Jedi OrderEdit
- "If the Jedi keep having 'successes' like this last mission, pretty soon there won’t be any of us left. "
- ―Jaina Solo
Luke Skywalker blamed himself for the death of so many Jedi during the mission, especially Anakin's, considered by many as his natural successor in the leadership of the new Jedi Order. Anakin's parents, Leia and Han Solo, also suffered, but Han's experiences while grieving Chewbacca's demise made their relationship grow stronger, and together the went though a successful mourning period. At the end of the war Han inserted Anakin's lightsaber in a wroshyr tree in which Chewbacca's countenance had been carved, saying that maybe someone as virtuous as the wookiee would someday recover the Jedi weapon.
Jaina Solo thought that she had lost both their brothers during the mission and, driven by the notion that she was the avatar of the Yuuzhan Vong goddess Yun-Harla, she spent her time fighting the Yuuzhan Vong using the tricks the goddess may employ. She started to fall to the dark side, but with Kyp Durron's assistance she stayed in the light. Jacen Solo's capture at the end of the mission had even greater consequences, and was the catalyst to the war's peaceful resolution. During his captivity Jacen was taken to Yuuzhan'tar (Coruscant after its terraforming), but he managed to escape thanks to the teachings of Vergere and Ganner Rhysode's sacrifice, another survivor of the Jedi strike team.
Tahiri Veila, who had been romantically linked to Anakin, fell to despair, and it was only after the Battle of Ebaq 9 that she could remade her life. A year after the mission, Cal Omas was elected as Chief of State of the New Republic, and one of his first priorities was to organize a public Knighting ceremony for the mission's survivors, and to honor the fallen.
Five years after the end of the war, the mission's survivors felt a powerful call from the depths of the Unknown Regions. The call was sent by Raynar Thul, who had awaken inside the wreckage of the Tachyon Flier on the planet Yoggoy, and afterwards had saved Lomi Plo and Welk from the burning vessel, though the three of them were horribly burned and mutilated during their escape. Yoggoy was a colony of the insectoid Killiks, and Raynar was absorbed by their hive mind, becoming UnuThul. Raynar used the Force Meld to draw the strike team's survivors with the hope that they would defend the Killiks from the Chiss Ascendancy, as both species' territories intersected in several zones. Due to the continued use of the meld during the years before, the Jedi easily became Killik Joiners, united with the hive mind of the insectoid species. The only Jedi survivors that resisted the Joining process were Jacen Solo, who in the aftermath of the Yuuzhan Vong War spent five "sabbatical" years (interrupted by Raynar's call) to study diverse Force doctrines from users that weren't Jedi, and Tenel Ka, who couldn't answer the call due to her duties as Queen Mother of the Hapes Consortium. Nevertheless, Jacen asked Tenel Ka her fleet to help the Killiks, and her condition was that he spent a night with her. From that union was born Allana, heir to the Hapes throne. The Joiner Jedi fought on the Killik's side against the Chiss during the Dark Nest Crisis and the following Swarm War, and after the war's end they had to take treatments to disconnect themselves from the Killik hive mind.
Alema Rar was the only Jedi who stayed Joined, and she voluntarily became part of Lomi Plo and Welk's Dark Nest. After the latter's death at the hands of Saba Sebatyne, Alema became Plo's Night Herald. The Twi'lek fell to the dark side of the Force, a fact that didn’t surprise Luke Skywalker, who knew that after her sister Numa's death it was only a matter of time before Alema fell to darkness. During the Swarm War Alema fought Luke and Leia Organa Solo on separate occasions, and both seriously injured her; Leia left her for dead on a showdown on the jungle world Tenupe. Nonetheless, Alema survived, though badly scarred, and reappeared completely insane during the Second Galactic Civil War. She found the Dark Lady of the Sith Lumiya and decided to join her cause, as she thought that turning Jacen Solo to the dark side would hurt greatly the Solos and the Skywalkers. She mentioned that her purpose was to restore the Balance: the Solos and the Skywalkers had hurt her, so she would hurt them in turn. Eventually, though, she died at the hands of Jagged Fel.
The Mission to Myrkr was instrumental in Jacen Solo's fall to the dark side of the Force thirteen years later to become the Sith Lord Darth Caedus. After killing the voxyn queen, Jacen was captured by the Yuuzhan Vong, and he was tortured by the Embrace of Pain. Vergere cut him off from the Force, so all the Jedi, except for her mother, believed him dead. During the most part of a year Vergere taught him unorthodox Force doctrines, and revealed that she had been a Jedi of the Old Republic; likewise, according to Jacen himself, she taught him much, such as to how to separate himself from pain or how to embrace it, how to drown himself within the force or to separate from it, and how to be human or Yuuzhan Vong or neither. In a word, Vergere taught him to survive, and Jacen considered her as his mentor. Thirteen years after the Mission to Myrkr, Jacen and his nephew and apprentice Ben Skywalker found Lumiya, the Dark Lady of the Sith, believed dead for more than thirty years. Lumiya convinced Jacen that Vergere had sacrificed herself so he could live and take the Sith mantle that was his right, as heir to his grandfather, Darth Vader. Jacen accepted, as he realized that he was disappointed by his life as a Jedi, and being a Sith would allow him to take order to the galaxy so sacrifices such as Anakin's would no longer be necessary.
At the beginning of the Second Galactic Civil War, Jacen had conversations with the hero of the Rebellion Wedge Antilles and the smuggler Uran Lavint, and both separately told him that he had changed since his youth. During a subsequent introspection exercise, Jacen discovered he had lost the wish he had as a young boy of handling animals, as since Myrkr all the animals he saw reminded him of the voxyn. Jacen lost his empathy, causing him to commit terrible actions thinking they were the best thing to do for the "common good". One of these acts was using the rare ability of "flow-walking", a Force technique he had learned from the Aing-Tii monks during his pilgrimage after the Yuuzhan Vong War, to travel back in time with Tahiri Veila to Anakin's final moments aboard the Baanu Raas to bend her to his will. The plan worked, as Tahiri still hadn't recovered from the death of her lost love, her exemplary service record notwithstanding, and she became Darth Caedus' Sith apprentice. In one of their visits to the wordship, Tahiri pushed her younger self so she could actually kiss Anakin just before he died, but soon after his final duel with his twin sister Jaina, Caedus told Tahiri that she hadn't changed the past, only her perception of the past: the younger Tahiri hadn't kissed Anakin, even though the current Tahiri remembered having done so. In light of this revelation, Tahiri no longer trusted Caedus, and soon after his death she was convinced by Ben Skywalker to abandon the Sith ways.
It must be pointed out that Jacen tought of using his flow-walking technique to change the past and save Anakin on Myrkr, but the Aing-Tii monks told him that such an action was impossible. Therefore, the events of the Mission to Myrkr weren't modified in any way, albeit Jacen and Tahiri came back several times to that moment in time.
Behind the scenesEdit
- "We told Troy Denning that Anakin's death was a part of his book Star by Star, but he created the setting and action."
- ―Sue Rostoni.
The events of the Mission to Myrkr took place on Troy Denning's novel Star by Star, the ninth in the New Jedi Order series. In Star Wars: New Jedi Order Round-Robin Interview, an interview with some key creators and editors of the series, Sue Rostoni revealed that Troy Denning was instructed to kill Anakin Solo in his book, but he was the one who developed the way Anakin was killed. Therefore, though Anakin's death had been already planed, Denning was the Mission to Myrkr's creator.
Anakin Solo's death proved to be a controversial aspect in the New Jedi Order series, though not as Chewbacca's death in Vector Prime. Nevertheless, many fans though it was well executed, and it appears as one of the favorite events on some "Best of the Expanded Universe" lists, such as The Jedi Council Forums and Star Wars Perú. Nevertheless, several fans have expressed anger at Anakin Solo's death, and some have argued that he could return in the future.
- Star by Star (First appearance)
- Dark Journey (Mentioned only)
- Traitor (Mentioned only)
- Destiny's Way (Mentioned only)
- Ylesia (Mentioned only)
- Force Heretic II: Refugee (Mentioned only)
- The Unifying Force (Mentioned only)
- Dark Nest I: The Joiner King (Mentioned only)
- Betrayal (Mentioned only)
- Inferno (Flow-walk)
- Invincible (Mentioned only)
- The New Jedi Order Sourcebook
- Mission to Myrkr
- Making a Full Recovery
- The New Essential Chronology
- The New Essential Guide to Droids
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.000 1.001 1.002 1.003 1.004 1.005 1.006 1.007 1.008 1.009 1.010 1.011 1.012 1.013 1.014 1.015 1.016 1.017 1.018 1.019 1.020 1.021 1.022 1.023 1.024 1.025 1.026 1.027 1.028 1.029 1.030 1.031 1.032 1.033 1.034 1.035 1.036 1.037 1.038 1.039 1.040 1.041 1.042 1.043 1.044 1.045 1.046 1.047 1.048 1.049 1.050 1.051 1.052 1.053 1.054 1.055 1.056 1.057 1.058 1.059 1.060 1.061 1.062 1.063 1.064 1.065 1.066 1.067 1.068 1.069 1.070 1.071 1.072 1.073 1.074 1.075 1.076 1.077 1.078 1.079 1.080 1.081 1.082 1.083 1.084 1.085 1.086 1.087 1.088 1.089 1.090 1.091 1.092 1.093 1.094 1.095 1.096 1.097 1.098 1.099 1.100 1.101 1.102 1.103 1.104 1.105 1.106 1.107 1.108 1.109 1.110 1.111 1.112 1.113 1.114 1.115 1.116 1.117 1.118 1.119 Star by Star
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Dark Journey
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 The New Essential Chronology
- ↑ Balance Point
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Edge of Victory I: Conquest
- ↑ 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 6.12 6.13 6.14 6.15 6.16 6.17 6.18 6.19 6.20 6.21 6.22 6.23 6.24 6.25 6.26 6.27 6.28 6.29 6.30 6.31 The New Jedi Order Sourcebook
- ↑ Star by Star mentions that Lando Calrissian acted as a Talfaglio native working for the Great River that was hoping to spare the refugees, and The New Jedi Order Sourcebook indicates that he acted as an Arkanian miner that wanted to keep his holdings.
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Vector Prime (novel)
- ↑ Star by Star mentions that the Baanu Raas was a hundred and twenty kilometers long, but The New Jedi Order Sourcebook image of the worldship indicates a lenght of only 1200 meters, or 1.2 kilometers.
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Inferno (novel)
- ↑ Star by Star mentions that the Jedi felt a ripple in the Force of unknown origins, perhaps Raynar's death but that "they'd never know"; The New Jedi Order Sourcebook says that the strike team felt the specific death of a Jedi.
- ↑ Enemy Lines II: Rebel Stand
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 Destiny's Way
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 Edge of Victory II: Rebirth
- ↑ Force Heretic II: Refugee
- ↑ The Unifying Force
- ↑ 17.0 17.1 Traitor
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 18.2 Dark Nest I: The Joiner King
- ↑ 19.0 19.1 Dark Nest II: The Unseen Queen
- ↑ 20.0 20.1 Dark Nest III: The Swarm War
- ↑ Tempest
- ↑ Fury
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 Exile
- ↑ Betrayal
- ↑ 25.0 25.1 Invincible
- ↑ 26.0 26.1 Star Wars: New Jedi Order Round-Robin Interview
- ↑ Jedi Council Forums Top 100 EU Moments
- ↑ Star Wars Perú
- ↑ Jedi Council Forums Anakin Solo will return (theory)
- ↑ Anakin Solo and the Hero's Journey
- ↑ Bring back Anakin Solo!