- "Tell Anod not to forget who put him in power Zelor! The Empire has been working on this solar system for years, we wont be put off by a 'King' who has to be told when to sneeze!"
- ―Zeta Traal
Captain Zeta Traal was a Human female Imperial officer working for the Imperial Diplomatic Corps on the planet Velmor during the Galactic Civil War. As a diplomatic attaché to the royal regent, Zelor, her function was to make certain that Zelor's ruling conformed to Imperial standards. Three years after the Battle of Yavin, the existing royal heir, Prince Anod prepared to accept his coronation and take control of Velmor from Zelor as the planet's new king. Although Anod was loyal to the Empire, neither Traal nor Zelor had any intention of allowing the prince to remain in power for very long. The situation became more complicated when Anod's older brother, Prince Denid arrived on Velmor after a twenty-year exile. A bounty hunter named Korl Marcus had discovered Denid on the planet Tantajoc V and brought him home to Velmor so that he could rightly assume the position of heir-apparent to the throne. Korl Marcus was in fact, Luke Skywalker in disguise, working for the Rebel Alliance to put a Rebel-sympathizer on the throne.
Captain Traal suspected that Korl Marcus was the sort of hunter whose allegiance was owed to whoever had the most money. She attempted to seduce Korl one evening and offered him a reward if he would agree to assassinate Prince Denid. Luke had no intention of doing as Traal asked, but agreed to the plan to keep his identity a secret. Skywalker was able to warn Denid of Traal's schemes during a Mrid Hunt, and the conspiracy between Traal, Zelor and Anod fell apart. As everything erupted into chaos, Traal shot Prince Anod in the chest, killing him instantly. She then trained her blaster on Skywalker, but a Velmoc named Jedidiah leapt on top of her, spoiling her aim. Traal wheeled around and fired a shot at point-blank range directly into Jedidiah's chest, killing him. By this point, Denid, Luke and the others had gained the upper hand and Traal was arrested.
- "Recommend my assignment be continued indefinitely, as I have gained the trust of the prince and Regent. Both are little more than provincial fools—Anod especially so—and I should have little trouble manipulating them to serve the Empire's needs."
- ―Zeta Traal
Zeta Traal was a captain in the Imperial Diplomatic Corps by the time of the Galactic Civil War. As an Imperial diplomat, Traal was assigned to the planet Velmor to oversee Imperial interests on that world. Many years ago, Imperial agents had incited a Great Revolt on the planet to overthrow the ruling monarchs, King Lorac and Queen Denira, hoping to install rulers that would support the Galactic Empire. However, their son and heir, Prince Denid, had escaped the world following the uprising and disappeared. Velmorian tradition dictated that twenty years needed to pass to declare the death of a royal heir, and the Imperials installed the Velmorian, Zelor as Regent until Anod, the Imperial-sympathizing second son of the deposed monarchs, could be legally declared King.
As a diplomat to Velmor, Traal became acquainted with Zelor and the heir-apparent, Prince Anod, earning their trust. As a member of the diplomatic corps, Traal compiled a report on the world for her masters, requesting an extension of her assignment on Velmor so that she could manipulate Anod after he became King. In her report, Traal profiled the native species of Velmor, the Velmoc. As a humanocentric speciesist, Traal recommended that after Anod became King, the Empire should bombard the Tol Velmoc mountains where the majority of the Velmoc resided. Traal hoped that this action would wipe out the Velmoc and serve as a warning to the Human Velmorians of the Imperial might. On sending her report, Traal underestimated Velmorian intelligence and Toyal Spymaster was able to intercept her transmission.
- "I want you…to kill Prince Denid and his little Queen at the ceremonial games tomorrow! Whatever reward he promised you for rescuing him…I'll double it! I intend to go far in the Empire, Marcus…and I'd be grateful for your help…in any number of ways!"
- ―Zeta Traal
In 3 ABY, the required twenty years had passed since Prince Denid's disappearance, and the Velmorians prepared to declare Denid to be dead and crown Prince Anod as their new King. On the day of Anod's coronation, the ceremony was interrupted by a starship which landed in the middle of the proceedings. From this ship came the lost Prince Denid alongside his betrothed, the Alderaanian Loren. Denid had been found stranded on the planet Tantajoc V by the bounty hunter Korl Marcus and was able to return just in time to confirm his claim to the throne. Traal was shocked at Denid's discovery, ruining the Imperial Diplomatic Corps' plan for Velmor. Zelor demanded that Denid be examined by the royal physician, Chozz Wardle to confirm his identity. The tests came back positive, but Traal was suspicious of the timing of his return, believing that some greater plan was at work behind the scenes. Unknown to Traal, Korl Marcus and Lady Loren were in reality aliases for Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa, agents of the Rebel Alliance. Denid's return had been orchestrated by Skywalker and Organa to keep Velmor out of the Empire's control.
During the celebration of Denid's survival, Traal was seated next to Korl Marcus, and his presence gave her an idea for a plan. Captain Traal knew that Denid had to be eliminated, and she realized that Marcus could help her. Traal ran a check on Marcus' registration papers and discovered that "Korl Marcus" was a fake name. However, instead of realizing the true purpose of the alias, Traal believed that "Marcus" was actually attempting to hide from his criminal past. With this information at her disposal, Traal came to "Marcus" with a proposition. In exchange for both keeping his false identity a secret and doubling the reward she expected him to get for rescuing Denid, Traal asked "Korl Marcus" to assassinate Prince Denid and Lady Loren. To ensure Marcus' cooperation, Traal promised a romantic encounter and proved her willingness by kissing the bounty hunter. "Marcus" agreed to her proposal and left a satisfied Traal behind.
The Imperial captain then met with Zelor and Anod, revealing to her conspirators her plan to kill Marcus after he had carried out the assassination. Zelor confirmed that Anod would be ready to take the throne after the assassination, and Traal threatened the young prince, reminding him who was in charge. Anod attempted to assert his authority, but Traal silenced him, pointing out that Imperial power was the only reason that Anod was set to take the throne. Zelor silenced his ward and reassured Traal that they would be ready tomorrow after "Korl Marcus" had killed Denid. Unknown to Traal, Luke Skywalker had no intention of following through with his alter-ego's agreement and revealed Traal's plan to Prince Denid and Leia Organa.
- "Do it now, Marcus…for me…!"
"One moment captain—I'd like to talk over our agreement a bit more—at my convenience!"
- ―"Korl Marcus" betrays Captain Traal
The next day, Traal was present to take part in a ceremonial Mrid Hunt and watched as Prince Denid and Lady Loren disappeared into the Great Forest of Lorac. On top of ycaqt beasts, Captain Traal followed "Korl Marcus" as he followed the prince. Spying Denid and Loren relaxing in a clearing, "Marcus" had an open shot at Denid, and Traal encouraged him to take the shot. Instead, the bounty hunter pulled his blaster pistol on the Imperial captain instead. To Traal's shock, Marcus attempted to lead her out of the forest, revealing that he would not be following through on their agreement. However, Zelor and Anod disrupted the capture, and Zelor shot the pistol out of the bounty hunter's hand. As Traal watched, Anod shot Denid and Loren. Enraged, "Marcus" revealed his identity as Luke Skywalker and pulled his lightsaber, cutting the blaster out of Anod's hand. With the assassination attempt apparently complete, the conspirators turned on one another, hoping to claim the throne of Velmor. Zelor fired on both Skywalker and Traal who dove out of the way of his attack. Traal returned fire and hit Anod in the chest, killing him instantly. In the chaos, Traal, Zelor, and Skywalker disappeared into the foliage.
As all three attempted to circle around one another, Zelor was the first to get the drop on one of the other. He spied Skywalker meditating in the Force and approached him with his energy sword, planning to run him through. Traal watched from a distance as Zelor's attack failed, Skywalker sensing the attack and destroying the regent's weapon with his lightsaber. With a sufficient distraction, Zelor pointed her weapon at Skywalker and Zelor, planning to stun Skywalker and kill Zelor. She would then be able to escape off-world with Skywalker as her prisoner. However, Traal's plan fell apart when she was ambushed by Jedidiah, a Velmoc servant of Prince Denid. The Velmoc dove from a ycaqt beast and tackled Traal, but not before she was able to get off a single blaster shot. Jedidiah was killed instantly, but Jedidiah's sacrifice gave Skywalker the time he needed to finish off Zelor and get the upper hand. As Traal reached for her blaster, Skywalker hit her over the head with the butt of his lightsaber, knocking her unconscious.
- "Don't worry about Traal revealing your whereabouts to the Empire, Leia…we'll keep her under wraps until long after you've gone!"
Captain Traal's assassination attempt failed completely, as Anod had only stunned Denid. Prince Denid then had Traal arrested and kept under heavy guard. Knowing that Traal would reveal the location of Skywalker and Leia Organa, Denid promised to keep her imprisoned until the Rebels had left Velmor. Skywalker and Organa then left Velmor, leaving Traal to the Velmorians.
Personality and traitsEdit
- "Once Anod's rule is secure, recommend orbital bombardment of the Tol Velmocs to eliminate this alien nuisance and serve as an example to the Human Velmorians."
- ―Zeta Traal
Zeta Traal was an ambitious Imperial captain and had hopes to rise through the ranks of the Imperial Diplomatic Corps. She saw an opportunity for advancement by furthering Imperial interests on Velmor and was able to use her diplomatic skills to integrate herself into the lives of Regent Zelor and Prince Anod. Traal was not above using assassination and betrayal to get what she wanted, and she attempted to use both to eliminate the rightful heir to the throne of Velmor. Traal was skilled with a blaster pistol, and she killed both Prince Anod and the Velmoc, Jedidiah with well-placed shots from her weapon.
Traal was a proponent of High Human Culture and was a humanocentric speciest. She saw the local Velmoc on Velmor as an inferior species. She showed disgust for the sentient Velmoc and hoped that the Imperials would eliminate their species after taking control of Velmor.
Behind the scenesEdit
Captain Traal was created by Mike W. Barr and illustrated by Walt Simonson for use in Marvel's Star Wars 49: The Last Jedi. Traal was captured at the end of the issue, and she did not appear in any further comics. In March 2003, Traal was referenced in the online supplement, Velmor: Royalty and Rebellion by Cory J. Herndon. Alongside information on the planet Velmor, the article revealed Traal's first name, Zeta. Traal was referenced in the article, ComicScan: Luke-ing for Love in all the Wrong Places in Galaxy Collector 7, which referenced Skywalker's romantic encounter with Traal. She was also referenced in the Star Wars Insider 91 article, Comic Marvels, which noted her as one of the antagonists in The Last Jedi, which was singled out as one of the best tales from Marvel's Star Wars comics.
- Star Wars 49: The Last Jedi (First appearance)
- "ComicScan: Luke-ing For Love In All The Wrong Places"—Star Wars Galaxy Collector 7
- (First identified as Zeta Traal)
- "Comic Marvels"—Star Wars Insider 91