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"Assault at Selonia": Book 2 of the Corellian Trilogy


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chapter 1: Family Ties:
Han Solo knows that there’s only one reason he’s alive right now is because his cousin Trackan Sal-Solo, leader of the Corellian system’s Human League movement, wants a look at him.
The paunchy, unshaven guards may wear fancy insignia but they are clearly not seasoned warriors. They are astounded at the similarities between Han and Thrackan.
Thrackan is unhappy at the damage Han caused at the spaceport, shooting up patrol ships and allowing an Ugly to escape. Han tells him that he can’t win this battle. The New Republic has defeated far greater threats than the Human League.
Trackan explains they’ve already won. No one will challenge them if they have the power to destroy a star. He had hoped Han might act like a patriotic Corellian and join them but he knows that won’t happen.
He needs to know why he should keep Han alive. Han surmises that Thrackan wants something from Leia and warns him not to upset her. Thrackan denies needing anything from her, but more or less confirms he needs Han alive.
He brings a female Selonian in. They are almost the only Selonians seen in public and this one, unlike Han, is not bound. She is massive and angry. Thrackan introduces her as Dracmus who was picked up for causing problems last night. Dracmus speaks Selonian to Han and explains she thinks they are going to be forced to fight. She advises him to let her win so she won’t damage him too much.
Thracken warns them to make it convincing and, since Han is still bound, that isn’t hard. She avoids sinking her teeth into his neck or slashing him with her claws, but it’s still a tough fight until Han goes down, certain this is sufficiently entertaining, and finds his restraints open.
He isn’t sure if they were gimmicked in the first place or damaged in the fall. Now Dracmus is surprised and angry that they will have to continue. He punches her in the snout which makes her angry, but she still does not deliver any killing blows. He yells in Selonian to batter him with her tail. She seems to calm down and knocks him out.
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  • I’m surprised that, at least, Thrackan doesn’t speak Selonian. It seems rather foolish to let two combatants battle each other who were both prisoners and could communicate with each other.

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chapter 2: The Fabric Torn:
Assuming that someone powerful enough to put an interdiction field over the entire Corellian system can also monitor communications, Luke decides to wait until they can speak to someone in person after dropping into Coruscant.
Lando wonders if the field was put up to keep them out. They were kicked off of Sacorria just as Lando was hitting it off with Lady Tendra Risant. They may have guessed the next destination was Corellia or gotten it out ofPO. Luke doesn’t think they are important enough. Lando points out that Luke is. Luke still thinks that there are easier ways to keep a Jedi Master out of the way than to set up an interdiction field over an entire system.
They are met by NRI agents at the landing pad, one of them, Showolter, asks them to accompany him. They are put in a hovercar with the droids and the windows go opaque. Luke knows how to keep up with their direction. They are taken to the palace and put in a turbolift going doing.
Showolter tells them they are going to a safe room via a back way. He advises them to handle their weapons. This far down, there will probably be feral hunters. Indeed, they have to deal with savage Corridor Ghouls that Luke has to use the Force to restrain while they get into the door.
Inside the meeting room, Admiral Ackbar and Mon Mothma are waiting for them. They did not know about the interdiction field. This meeting was called because all contact with the Corellian system has been cut off.
Anything related to this situation will be handled with small face-to-face meetings. There’s someone leaking information to Corellia and they don’t know who it is. The fleet is at low readiness with most ships in drydock or handling other sectors. Whoever planned this timed it well.
R2 displays a graph of the field which Ackbar notices is not centered around the star but near the Double Worlds. There’s a space station there, too. There are all manner of possibilities for what this field is being used for but the fact that it exists and that they have it begs the obvious question of how.
Corellia is not a significant trading world anymore and is strapped for cash. They may be in trouble if they’ve gotten technology this powerful and decide to sell it. Mon Mothma warns them they cannot get into what if scenarios right now. The current situation is bad enough.
They have to get into the Corellian system and they have no fleet with which to use. That’s why they’re here.
Lando thought they were being called in because they’d just been to Corellia. Ackbar, Showolter and Mon Mothma admit that there information regarding the field has been invaluable, but they were asked to the meeting specifically for that reason. They would like for Luke to get into contact with someone he used to know. Gaeriel Captison of the Bakuran system appears to have a battle fleet at her disposal and they were hoping Luke might convince her to let him borrow it.
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  • Whatever happened to the Black Fleet that was commissioned two years ago during the Yevethan Crisis? At the time, the New Republic fleet was said to be massive. I’m sure that some old ships have been decommissioned and scrapped, but why is the New Republic so strapped for battle ships right now?
  • We met Gaeriel Captison in The Truce at Bakura.

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chapter 3: Coming In, Coming Out


In her stolen ship, Belindi Kalenda hopes she can get into Coruscant space without being shot down. Otherwise, she won’t be able to deliver the message cube Han Solo had given her and had worked so hard to divert attention from her so she could escape.


In the meantime, Lady Luck lifts off for Bakura with Luke’s X-Wing attached. Luke is distracted by the name of so long ago. He’d met Gaeriel in the days after the destruction of the Death Star and the death of the Emperor. While she hadn’t been one of the great loves of his life, they’d grown close and Luke had wondered what might have been.


C-3PO assures him that much time has passed since he’d met her and it’s likely that she doesn’t even remember him, much less be bothered by his arrival. He tells Luke that his research indicates, six years ago, she married Pter Thanas, the former Imperial military commander, whom they’d met on their visit. The two had a child named Malinza together and Gaeriel became the youngest Prime Minister of Bakura.


During the next election, however, Thanas became ill. It’s believed his illness distracted Gaeriel from the campaign and she lost the election. Thanas died two days later. In the year since, Gaeriel has ceased taking an active role in politics. Malinza is 4 ½ right now.


Luke remembers her well enough to know that Gaeriel would not have married someone she didn’t love. He decides to take some time in his cabin to reflect upon all this.


Kalenda tries desperately to convince the Y-Wings shooting at her that she’s a legitimate pilot on a courier mission. A Mon Calamari star cruiser tractors her in.


Luke knows that Mon Mothma could have raised a fleet if she wanted to. It would have been difficult and expensive, but the woman is savvy. She knows that it’s important for the Bakurans to feel important, so far away from New Republic ’s center. They’ve had no more problems since the Ssi-ruuk attack all those years ago, but they won’t let their guard down anytime soon.


Also, Luke is being sent here as a negotiator, part of Mon Mothma’s urging him to take a more active role in politics.


They notice the Ugly being fired upon. Knowing that those ships are built on Corellia, it’s safe to say that it may be bringing important news. When the Naritus tractors it in, Lady Luck changes course to find out what it is.


Kalenda is held in a detention cell while her identity is verified. Then Skywalker comes in and says he understands she has information for him.

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  • Pter Thanas was also in The Truce at Bakura. He resigned from Imperial service at the end to help the Bakurans build up their military.

  • What is Mon Mothma’s role here? She stepped in during The New Rebellion when Leia was facing a political crisis but turned the position back over to Leia at the end. She is retired and has been for years. Is it just a matter of her covering for Leia who is now trapped in the Corellian system?


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chapter 4: The Flowers of Home:


While Ebrihim guides Chewie toward his family’s land, the twins and Anakin are strapped into their bunks in a tiny cabin trying to stay still. Anakin is not happy with not being able to leave the bunk.


They have the clothes they were wearing when they escaped Corellia and three sets of cut down adult coveralls that Ebrihim has made for them. He insists they wash out their clothing every night and that makes for extra work. Of course, they are also concerned about the mystery cavern they encountered in the underground archeological dig on Corellia and the starbuster plot they overheard their parents talking about with Mara Jade and Governor-General Micamberlecto.


Ebrihim has the ship land near his aunt’s farm. His Aunt Marcha is suspicious of the strange ship and shoots at Ebrihim when he exits the Falcon. He explains the reason for hiding and she grouses that the pilot landed on her flower beds.

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chapter 5: Seems Like Old Times:


Thracken tosses a bucket of cold water at Han to wake him up. He’s been told his cousin will live. It’s obvious Thrackan’s been drinking because of his slurred speech and, of course, the bottle he’s carrying.


He tells Han that he needs to keep him alive for a reason. For one, if they know that Han is where Thracken is, they will think twice about attacking should they find out where the hiding place is. Secondly, Han will be the messenger to get the truth of Thrackan’s plans out when the time is right.


He does want Han’s cooperation, but Han warns him that prisoners of war are expected to try to escape.


Thrackan mentions they almost got the children but the Wookiee got them out. That would have been real leverage to use against the Chief of State. Han asks how Thrackan can disregard the best values their people have. Thrackan doesn’t believe the little morality tales they were taught as children, besides, considering Han is a pirate and a smuggler, he’s one to lecture.


Han asks how Thrackan got to go from minor Imperial bureaucrat to the Hidden Leader. Thrackan explains that he was third in line of succession, then the Rebel Alliance won the war by virtue of the Diktat cutting back on the Corellian forces he sent to help the Empire. He took off with half the treasury and then the scavengers came in. The Imperial system more or less collapsed here because of all the aliens.


He wants to restore the New Order here. He knows the Empire itself is gone, but they can rule an independent Corellia. He’s not really blowing up another star if the non-humans don’t get off the planet. That’s just a lie he’s spreading.


Han asks if he even destroyed a star in the first place, but Thrackan’s not telling. In the meantime, he has a surprise for Han. He brings in Dracmus, the Selonian, and tells him to meet his new roommate.


Ebrihim introduces his aunt to the children and Chewbacca. Marcha explains the power is done because of terrorists who are campaigning to keep Drall a planet only for Drall. Chewie offers to use the Falcon’s generator to help her while they do repairs on the hyperdrive.


She doesn’t know about the threat by the Human League to destroy stars and they don’t know about the interdiction field. Clearly, there is much to discuss.

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  • Han and Thrackan talk about their past as though they had a long-standing one. So far as we know, they knew each other for a few short weeks when they were young and never saw one another again.

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chapter 6: Meetings and Lies:
Gaeriel Captison knows this isn’t an official delegation from the New Republic but she wants to look good for Luke Skywalker. To her surprise, he arrives alone. He explains he is here about the present, not the past. Knowing their first meeting after all this time would be awkward, he wanted to get that part out of the way before the rest of the group arrived.
He tells her that she still has a part of his heart, but that it doesn’t burn as it did before. The life he leads would have been hard for her and she knows it.
The New Republic is facing a crisis. A dissident group in the Corellian system claims to be able to blow up stars. This may or may not be true and there’s a chance they may blow up stars in inhabited systems. The New Republic’s fleet has been downsized of late and those that are not already committed elsewhere are under repair. He’s been sent to ask if they can use Bakura’s.
Gaeriel knows the people she will have to call to arrange this negotiation and goes to do just that while Luke lets the others in.
Han and Dracmus sit across from each other for a long time. Dracmus finally speaks in Basic because the Selonian language does not have a word for it. She does not understand the word cousin.
Han explains that there are multiple positions in a family a cousin can have. In the case of Thrackan, he is of the closest kind, being the son of Han’s father’s sister. However, though they look and sound alike, Han and Thrackan do not think alike and this is what makes them different. They are enemies.
Dracmus does not understand how members of the same family can be enemies, but she is glad to know that Han is not like his cousin as she will spare his life.
Tendra Risant scans the skies with her macrobinoculars and wonders about the fleet assembling in orbit. She isn’t sure she loves Lando Calrissian, but they certainly have a connection. It’s possible he won’t come back. But even if he doesn’t, he’d sparked her wondering.
Sacorria has always prided itself on its independence from the Corellian system, but it does have its drawbacks. Since the crisis started, trade has come to a standstill. The Triad is a paranoid government but they haven’t started any crackdowns. Still, the military seems to have disappeared.
She’s also learned that they started mobilizing two days before the interdiction field was activated. She wonders if this fleet is going to Corellia. It’s really the only place it can go. The New Republic should have known about this, but the people of Corellia really should be warned.
She just has to figure out how to do that.
Dracmus asks Han about the human concept of lying. It’s not that Selonians cannot lie, it’s just that they are not practiced in it as humans are. She wants to know if he can tell when Thrackan is lying.
Han tells her that Thrackan told him more than he intended to last night when he’d been drinking. Some things Han can tell are lies because they do not fit with the evidence. Thrackan admitted he’d been lying about some things but was not specific.
Dracmus explains that she does not think the Human League had anything to do with the star going supernova. It didn’t explode by itself; something or someone set it off, but the Human League couldn’t have. Not long ago, they were just a small group of inept dissidents. She cannot think that this drunken group of rabble rousers could have developed such a sophisticated piece of technology. She thinks they found out about the star and took credit for it.
Whoever brought the message about the star back to Corellia is not just a messenger. Han thinks of Mara Jade. Dracmus knows of Mara who has done honest dealings with the Selonians. Han reveals that she used to be an Imperial spy who worked for the Emperor directly. She could have brought the message to Corellia, just as she brought a message to his family when they arrived. It looked like it had been intended for Luke instead. She was nowhere in sight when Corona House was attacked.
Dracmus finds this all interesting but says that Mara Jade has been spotted at Corona House since the day after the attack. She thinks that this isn’t about Imperial spies but the Imperial military. In her mind, some of them have gotten ahold of an old superweapon. This is just like the Empire.
Han is tired of the Imperial bogeyman. He thinks the Empire is dead. Mara has been helpful in the past, but she’s never really shown her hand. She could have decided to become a part of this starbuster plot as a way of restoring her former glory.
Dracmus doesn’t think that Mara, regardless of her personality and her past, is capable of carrying out the mass slaughter of innocent people.
Besides, she hopes this isn’t true because it means Mara has put herself exactly where she needs to be to help this plot. And where Mara is right now is with Han’s wife.
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  • Isn’t Bakura part of the New Republic? Can’t the Bakuran fleet be conscripted or something? Why do they have to send a negotiator?

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chapter 7: Trust:
Leia demands that the Human League guard give her access to a working communication system. He delivers her meal and tells her that she can keep asking but it won’t happen. In other news, she’s getting a roommate because two female prisoners started fighting and had to be separated.
The new arrival is Mara Jade who crawled out of the upper story rubble the day after the attack, claming to have been trapped there. There’s nothing to prove or disprove her story, but Leia has to be cautious. Mara explains that her previous roommate accused her of being a League sympathizer and she expects Leia thinks the same way.
She has no way to prove she isn’t; however, she can at least hope to convince Leia that she wants out of this building as much as Leia does. If only because her trading business will go downhill.
Leia has been put in an impossible situation. The Human League is demanding that all non-humans be removed from the Corellian system which will result in the forced relocation of millions of people; something that the New Republic will be hard-pressed to do in the time allotted anyway. Either way, the New Republic looks bad.
Mara points out that they want to run an independent Corellian state. Making the New Republic vulnerable helps them. Leia points out she can’t do anything while locked up. Mara thinks that won’t last. They are being held until Thrackan knows he has everything under control, then he’ll release the jamming and allow them to move about reasonably free. Of course, the interdiction field will stay put.
Leia reminds her that the New Republic fleet will show up eventually, even if they have to do it at sublight speeds. Mara is an independent trader and she knows the fleet isn’t up to snuff right now. If she knows that and Thrackan has access to Leia’s private codes, then he knows it, too.
Leia agrees. Besides, she doubts Thrackan will give her too much freedom. He’ll stick around to force her to negotiate at gunpoint. She has to get out of here. Mara has the answer to that. She has a slave circuit controller for Jade’s Fire.
It’s in her quarters on the twelfth floor. She wasn’t able to get to it during the attack. If she can get the controller, she can call the Fire here and they’ve got a good chance of getting out. The only problem is getting the controller. Leia has a thought on that and they begin planning.
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  • When did the Human League take over Corona House? It must have been when we weren’t reading.

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chapter 8: The Hard Way:
Han’s pacing is making Dracmus think twice about telling him about the danger to his wife. Han thinks they should make a break for it when the guards bring their dinner. Dracmus thinks that getting them killed will not help his wife. More guards will come and the facility will be locked down. She suggests patience and pleasantly asks if he heard a low humming with occasional clattering noise.
Since Corona House was designed as a residence and not a prison, Leia and Mara are confined in a room with no bars on the windows and linens on the bed. It takes one swiped knife from a dinner tray to try to pry a badly spot-welded window open for Leia to climb down using tied-together sheets.
Mara follows and they creep through the fifteenth floor where the Solo family had had their quarters. Leia picks up a fallen toy of Anakin and worries about her children. Inside the apartment, she finds where she’d hidden the new lightsaber Luke had given her and Han’s blaster. She gives the blaster to Mara and tells her they can go back to not trusting each other later.
A voice from upstairs calls down and it appears some of the soldiers have decided to take advantage of the empty quarters. They are trapped.
A hole is cut in the floor and a Selonian paw comes out of the bottom of the cell. Dracmus tells Han to hurry up.
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  • Leia didn’t have her lightsaber on her when the attack happened? Not very bright for a Jedi who was supposed to have finished her training.
  • And Mara doesn’t have hers?

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chapter 9: Getting Involved:


Mara shoots the newcomer who drops his light, something that irritates her as they could have used that. They hide the body and head out into the hallway. A rainstorm makes hearing difficult but it also helps hide their footsteps from the men coming down. Doubtless, their escape has been discovered.


They get to the 12th floor and into Mara’s small room where she retrieves a handlight and the small remote for the slave circuit. It still works but the rain will inhibit using it. They have to hide while the darkened room is searched by a guard, then decide to head out the smashed window and stand on the ledge. Even in a rainstorm, it’s probably safer. The jagged glass cuts Mara in the left leg and she grabs onto Leia for support.


They wait until the rain clears before Mara activates the controller. It locks just as a guard sticks his head out of the window. Leia uses her lightsaber on him, then fires at another who follows him. A hand tosses a detonator out at them which she knocks back into the room and it explodes.


The Jade’s Fire is on its way but the lights in the next room go on. Leia dispatches those attackers and they jump aboard the ship, but patrol ships are after them. Leia twists her ankle in the leap onto the Fire and Mara’s cut is quite severe. They head off Corellia as quickly as they can.

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chapter 10: Getting There:


Admiral Ossilege is surprised that the New Republic not only does not have enough ships to deal with this situation but they do not even know how many ships their enemy has. While all appearances indicate the Human League has no fleet to speak of, Kalenda knows that cannot be true.


Lando and the droids have looked over the data as closely as they can. There’s no way to prove that the message Leia received was sent before or after the star exploded. The Human League may not have the ability to destroy stars, but someone destroyed that one. The images are too close for someone not to have known it was going to blow.


As it is, the New Republic will have to evacuate the next planet on the to-be-destroyed list and that will take even more ships away from the fleet.


Gaeriel advises that the Prime Minister has agreed to support the New Republic on this with Ossilege in charge of the Bakuran fleet. Gaeriel will be sent to speak on behalf of the Bakuran government since communications jamming will make speaking with the Prime Minister first difficult.


Luke expresses concern about her daughter. Malinza will be staying with family and Gaeriel assures him she is not the first parent to be called into hazardous duty. Ossilege points out that, as grateful as they are for the help the New Republic has given them in the past, they cannot win this war for them. Nor can they leave Bakura undefended for months at a time.


His strategy is to knock out the interdiction field in order to give the New Republic ships a chance to come in. They have a countermeasure that may work against the field. Ossiege prefers to call is a hyperspace sustainer that will cut off a ship’s hyperdrive at interdiction point and allow forward momentum to carry it past the field.


They have only four ships equipped with it and they cannot expect any formation to remain stable while it happens. He wants to hit Selonia first. Though they believe the field is originating between the Double Worlds, he points out that they can come out on the exterior of Selonia. It is a major target and it will show them how the rebels will respond. To him, independent groups rising up on five planets at the same time is unlikely. He thinks they are all connected.


Han isn’t sure if he’s a fellow escapee or a prisoner of the Selonians as he crawls through the tunnels on his hands and knees.


Ebrihim and his Aunt Marcha spend the night talking about family and then move on to the recent crisis. She explains all sorts of dissident groups popped up overnight denouncing the Corellian sector government and the New Republic.


The Drallists are the worst, harassing travelers and cutting power. They accuse people of being collaborators every day.


He tells her he is traveling with the children of Chief of State Leia Organa Solo and how he came about doing so. She is impressed with his work, but concerned when he admits using his connections to the family to get a look at the archeological dig on Corellia. She asks him when Dralls ever dig up the past. This isn’t something their people do.


And, yet, she saw a short news report recently about just such a dig near their equator. She doesn’t know what it was about but it may be related to the one he saw on Corellia. It might be important to find out what the children discovered.


Tendra finds that bribes go a long way toward getting her a ship and being allowed to leave Saccoria. Though ships cannot enter the Corellian system, they can certainly fly through it at sublight speeds. But she doesn’t think the field will stay up indefinitely. It will have to come down at some point or, at least, the jamming will.


That doesn’t have any effect on the special equipment Lando had given her. It sends and receives electromagnetic radiation in the radio band and can travel at light speed. The Corellian system is only a few light-hours across. If Lando is tuned in, he should get the message.

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chapter 11: The Tale of Ratiocination:
The children can’t help but feel they’ve done something wrong when Q9 tells them that Aunt Marcha and Ebrihim want them to talk about the huge chamber they found on Corellia.
Aunt Marcha, on the other hand, assures them that what they found may be important and wants to know all about it. They explain how Anakin had used the Force to find the hidden panel that opened the door and described how the room looked and sounded at felt. She thanks them for their help and tells them they may go play. But Jaina feels she needs to know about the conversation they overheard their parents have with the Governor-General and Mara Jade.
Aunt Marcha isn’t sure that the conversation had anything to do with the caverns. Ebrihim assures them they didn’t spill any secrets. Though the message their parents discussed told them not to tell anyone, a general message was played for everyone the next day anyway.
Aunt Marcha is interested in the times and coordinates on the map. Anakin volunteers to write them down for her. The twins explain that Anakin has a good memory. He doesn’t read so well yet, but he knows his letters and numbers really well.
After recording Anakin’s word-for-word repeat of the conversation they overheard, listening to Sal-Solo’s announcement recorded by the Falcon and looking over the information Anakin was able to write down for them, Ebrihim and Marcha are still not sure what they have.
It is clear that someone claims responsibility for blowing up a star in the first message but does not say who. It orders them to follow instructions, but none are given.
The second message claimed responsibility for the star, gave a list of difficult demands and then actions were taken to make the demands impossible to meet. The message was not transmitted to the other planets, however, because of their pro-human sentiments.
Ebrihim thinks they need to use ratiocination here – deductive reasoning. They are assuming that both messages were sent by the same person, but that may not be the case. Neither the recorded message refers to the list of coordinates and they do not refer to the recorded message. The voice is Thrackan Sal-Solo’s but he might have been given a message to read aloud without being told why.
They don’t know when it was recorded. If Mara Jade was not part of the plot, it was no earlier than three weeks ago. If she was, than it could have been any time up to right before she handed the cube over. However, assuming she isn’t involved, the message could have been recorded months or years ago.
Suppose Thrackan Sal-Solo is involved in some aspect of the plot and was approached by the senders to record the first message because they needed a Corellian voice? At some point, he learns about the starbuster plot and decides to coordinate his uprising with the time that the message is going to be delivered. At that time, he sends his own message, claming to be able to control the device.
Marcha points out that it does not explain the riots on the other worlds. It is also means the Human League is capable of jamming communications and developing the system-wide interdiction field, something that she doesn’t think they are sophisticated enough to do. Ebrihmi concedes that but thinks that jamming communications, at the very least, is not a new piece of technology and Sal-Solo should be able to do that much.
So, he thinks that the message was supposed to be delivered before the star exploded and that Sal-Solo’s group bungled that assignment and delivered it afterwards instead. They were probably instructed to report when Leia Organa Solo got the message so attacks could be coordinated for that moment.
The masterminds of the attack wanted the field to keep New Republic ships out but the Chief of State trapped in-system. However, they wanted communications opened so their demands could be met. They instigated the various groups into rising up to make the situation more urgent. But Sal-Solo took credit for the starbuster plot, jammed communications so the real masterminds couldn’t reveal the truth and then found some way to take control of the interdiction field or keep the true operators from getting to it.
This is a disturbing scenario as it means the plotters are now working against each other. It also doesn’t answer questions about the archeological digs. Aunt Marcha thinks she knows what that’s about. She also thinks a similar cavern will be found here on Drall but they must find it first. She needs Anakin go with her to help them.
Ebrihim tells her all three children will insist on going together and he doesn’t feel comfortable putting them in that type of danger. She doesn’t either, but they may not have a choice.
Tendra travels through hyperspace until the interdiction field brings her out at Corell. She has a long way to go at sublight speeds to get to Corellia.
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  • Anakin is seven-and-a-half right now. We learned in The Crystal Star that Jaina already knew her times tables and she was five. The children in the SW universe seem to learn early and quickly things that children in our universe generally have to wait until they’re older to be taught. The fact that Anakin doesn’t read very well should be surprising considering what the children already know. However, we have already discussed that Anakin’s vocabularly varies from situation to situation. He seems to be able to pronounce words correctly, but the words he uses are those of a young child. Perhaps, this is something he’s just not as good at.

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chapter 12: Under the Iceberg:


Han crawls through the tunnels for hours, until they reach the Selonian tunnels and caverns. He had always felt this way of life was part of the past, but now he realizes that the Selonians seen above-ground are the ones trained to deal with humans. There’s a whole culture underground that no one thinks of.


He wonders if the Dralls have similar secrets.


There are injured down here. Dracmus explains that they are refugees from Sal-Solo’s attacks. She urges him onward. The end is near and they have to keep going.


Luke stands in the courtyard and stares at the marker under which Gaeriel’s husband is interred. He knows that it’s been bothering him that another man was to her as he should have been. He also knows there’s nothing he can do to change that.


Gaeriel comes down with her daughter, Malinza, who asks if he’s going to watch over her mother. She doesn’t want her to go and wants to know if he really needs her mother’s help. Luke says he does and that he will watch over her while they’re gone.


In the meantime, Tendra begins using the equipment to call for Lando.

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chapter 13: Yggyn’s Choice:


Mara has put the ship in orbit around the sun and tells Leia it’s time to decide what course to take. She wants to go back to Corellia and Leia doesn’t understand that. Mara is not Corellian, she doesn’t support the Human League and she’s not a fan of the New Republic.


Mara says her business interests have been damaged by these revolts and the system needs stability if she’s going to recoup some of those losses. The situation now does not bode well for stability. Besides, she isn’t comfortable with someone capable of wiping out whole star systems.


However, she knows Leia’s question was really designed to allay her suspicions. She points out that Leia herself could be considered part of the plot, too, considering the message was for her and keyed with her personal code and the data clearly came from high-level New Republic sources. Neither of them can prove they aren’t involved in this.


So they decide to trust each other. Mara thinks the smartest thing to do is get out of the Corellian system even if it takes them forever to do it. That actually might be the case as even Leia agrees the interdiction field is taking a lot of power and will have to come down eventually. However, someone has caused trouble for Mara and she’d like to cause some trouble back.


Leia understands not wanting to leave the system, but she doesn’t think returning to Corellia is a good idea. They are likely to be detected there and people will already be angry at them for escaping. Mara thinks Leia just wants to go to Drall in order to find her children. Leia agrees that it is true. Ebrihim would have taken them there because it’s where he knows best. Mara argues that Drall is a backwater world. A human landing there would attract attention. Even if she finds her children, she surely isn’t planning to sit there and hide with them. She can’t accomplish anything there.


Leia feels like she’d be abandoning them. Mara points out that they are with Chewie and their tutor. They are hardly unprotected. They cannot continue to argue forever so she suggests a Yggyn compromise. They cannot agree on Corellia or Drall, so they decide on Selonia.


Along the way to the Drall dig, Q9 is recruited to tell a restless Anakin all about the Boiling Sea so he will stop asking when they will arrive.

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chapter 14: Underground Activity:


The tunnels open up into a transportation hub where Han is handed over to a pilot named Salculd whose people think she’s odd for liking the open space. She explains that they are a group wanting Selonians on Corellia to be free of the Overden. They aren’t really concerned about this new set of uprisings but are happy to use them as cover for their own activities. She’s taking Han to Selonia now.


The children are sleeping in the hovercar when they arrive at the dig site. Ebrihim thinks his aunt is expecting an awful lot of a small child. They don’t find much that looks like the cavern on Corellia, so Chewie starts drilling. Anakin wakes up long enough to say that the blaster matrix is focused too tight, but it should be alright. It should take about twenty minutes.

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chapter 15: Posture and Repulsion:


Admiral Ossilege is aboard the Intruder which is an appropriate name for a ship about to overcome an interdiction field. He admits to a certain amount of excitement to be going into battle, however, it’s hard to confess he does considering the bloodshed that often erupts from it. He does think it’s about time Bakura stopped concentrating on defense.


They finish boring a hole that Q9 is lowered down into to confirm that everything is alright. Chewie is the last one down into the exposed tunnel. The twins follow Anakin, encouraging him to reach out with the Force. Anakin is trying but the sense isn’t as strong here.


Q9 offers to lead them with his intertial tracking data that he used on Corellia. If he can get them that far, Anakin should be able to find the entrance. After a time, he tells Q9 he’s going too far. He finds the control panel covered with mud and gets the door open.


Inside, they follow him across the walkway. He uses the control panel to raise the platform and a cone rises up before turning into a huge cylinder. Falling rock begins to push back up. Marcha asks him if he can bring it back down, too, and, when he says he can, she decides they are setting up camp here. This place needs to be studied before the Human League finds out.


Marcha knows what this is and she thinks Ebrihim does, too. She explains that the device is a planet-size repulsor. It moved the falling rock back up just as it moved Drall long ago. Scientists have long believed the Corellian system was not formed naturally. This planet was moved from somewhere else a long time ago. There is a similar place on Corellia, so it follows that the other planets have them, too.


Jacen agrees this is an important historical and archeological find, but the Human League won’t care about it. Marcha points out they do care about weapons. A repulsor this size could push off attacking ships, for example. Ebrihim thinks the planets have more practical defenses than this repulsor. Marcha agrees but they will have to table why the dissidents want this device so they can start studying it.


Anakin asks what she wants to do with it besides keeping the bad guys away. Marcha says she would tell him if she knew.

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chapter 16: Arriving Signals:


The Intruder and the accompanying ships have a bumpy ride through hyperspace as they try to get past the interdiction field. Artificial gravity fails for a short time and the Watchkeeper may have sustained more damage than expected, but all ships arrive in the Corellian system.


R2 is servicing both the Lady Luck and Luke’s X-Wing at the moment and is very busy. He is curious about a low-level electromagnetic radiation pulse that could be a beacon, but C-3PO arrives to take him to Luke so that will have to wait.


Salculd is not the best pilot and Dracmus is not the best commander. This ship is old and doesn’t work well. Han is recruited to do more than one repair work in between patching himself up, getting some rest and washing his clothes.


When they encounter a group of ships headed toward Selonia, Salculd tries to evade them over Han’s objections as to the capabilities of this ship and the regulator burns out. They cannot navigate and then they lose sublight engine initiator link.


Considering that, the fact that the navicomputer shuts down isn’t so dismal.


The Jade’s Fire reacts more calmly to the new arrivals than the Selonians do. Mara wants to know what the Bakurans are doing here. Leia reaches out with the Force and tells her Luke is on board. He must have called in their debt to him and brought them to help. How they got past the interdiction field is a mystery.


With communications down, though, Mara will not take a chance even Luke is aboard. She wants them to keep their heads down and proceed toward Selonia.


Kalenda is glad to be of some use now. The Bakurans have determined that both the jamming and the field is coming from between the Double Worlds. She’s also found the location of the field generator.


At a tactical briefing, she explains that all the ships have been restored to operational status after their emergence from hyperspace except the Watchkeeper which is not going to be repairable for the time being. Most of its fighters will be transferred aboard the others.


Small fighter craft have been seen launching from Corellia, Drall and the Double Worlds in a clear direct intercept path for the Intruder’s course to Selonia. They can only assume that Selonian ships will launch soon, too, as part of some coordinated attack.


But it’s not very coordinated, probably because of the jamming. Likely these launches were planned before the jamming as instructions for what to do if a ship comes into the system.


The good news is that she has found the location of the interdiction field. It’s Centerpoint Station. Centerpoint is a large space station that serves as the balance point between Tralus and Talus. It is capable of generating a great deal of power; however, right now, it’s generating far more than they thought possible.


Ossilege doesn’t understand this. A space station is harder to defend and their sources say fighters are coming from there, too, which means they are leaving the station without fighter defense. On top of that, the coordinated attack at least means these rebel groups are working together, despite the pro-human pronouncements of the Human League. Cooperating with each other is a risky move if it gets out, but this task force is seem as enough of a threat to risk sending fighters out. But they’re only light fighters and can’t do much damage.


Kalenda can only guess that there’s something they’re missing that makes the rebels confident that they can stop the task force at Selonia. Ossilege agrees and asks when they will be passing the Watchkeeper. He has a change in plans that he will inform them about soon.


Both Calrissian and Kalenda know that, when a captain takes an interest in a disabled ship, it can’t be good.

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chapter 17: All Together Now:
Tendra laments that Lando is still not responding to her message. It feels like it’s been years aboard this ship which doesn’t seem nearly as large as it did when she boarded it.
Ossilege advises his crew of his new orders. They are taking the Watchkeeper in tow so she can be sacrificed. The formation of the approaching ships, recently joined by some from Selonia, is horrible. They cannot hope to prevail in a direct fight. However, it’s perfect if they are only trying to herd the fleet toward something. He is not going to risk one of their intact ships to find out what that is.
He will guide the Watchkeeper by remote and give it a large lead into the system. Meanwhile, he wants a defensive posture only here. The fighters are only to engage when necessary. Luke and Lando will be among the pilots and get to their ships.
Leia knows the ships are close enough now and reaches through the Force to sense Luke fully. She knows he can sense her, too.
Luke senses her presence and knows she’s out there. He senses someone else, too.
So can Leia. She knows Han is aboard the disabled coneship they see out there. Luke is on the large Bakuran ship.
There’s nothing Luke can do about either of them now, even as Lando deals with his own surprising news.
Lando is stunned and wonders what Tendra is doing so close to Corellia. He sends a message back, telling her he’s going into battle, asks where she is and that he will try to monitor her original frequency.
Han hates being aboard a disabled ship, especially someone else’s disabled ship. He’s about to jury-rig something when he’s told a ship is docking with them. On top of everything else, Salculd didn’t spot it coming up on them.
When Han recognizes the Jade’s Fire, he says he’s not giving Mara the benefit of the doubt anymore and she’d better be able to convince him of her innocence. Then the door opens and Leia rushes into his arms.
Lando contacts Luke in space and asks if he knows anything more than before. Luke says he doesn’t but he can sense Han and Leia. He thinks they are with Mara Jade. Lando points out Mara’s ship is powerful and she should join them. Luke reminds him that Ossilege is probably right. This is not a set-up for a fighter-to-fighter battle.
Sure enough, while the fighters trade shots, the enemy seems intent upon herding them to one particular spot. The Watchkeeper obliges. No one knows what’s there but the large ship slams into something that turns it into a pancake. The shockwave knocks Luke’s X-Wing and Lady Luck into circles. Lando takes some hull damage and loses his port sublight engine.
Dracmus is saddeded that the fools have used the planetary repulsor. She explains that the Corellian system was build millennia ago but no one knows by whom. There are large planetary repulsors on each of the five worlds.
Selonia has already found there’s and has made it operational, though it’s difficult to aim. The other worlds are looking for theirs and the Human League certainly wants to find the one on Corellia. She doesn’t believe her people are controlling the Selonian one, but cannot be sure.
There are two factions on Selonia. Hers is the Republicanist faction which was hoping to use the repulsor as a bargaining chip with the New Republic to guarantee Selonian sovereignty in both the Republic and the Corellian sector. The Absolutists want to establish complete Selonian independence. They began to fight over it.
She’s long believed that all the revolutionary groups are being controlled by one outside force, but she doesn’t know who it is or that they are any closer to finding out. She does think, however, that her world just declared war on the New Republic by destroying that ship.
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  • At one point, Dracmus says that there is a repulsor buried underneath Dracmus. I think she meant to say underneath Selonia. The typographical errors continue in this book, but not as badly as the first one.

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chapter 18: On the Clock:
Tendra is moved to tears when she gets Lando’s message and looks over her pre-prepared response telling everything she knows before she sends it.
Marcha and Anakin ride a disc elevator to the top of the cylinder. Anakin knows his parents are out there somewhere. She says they are and that they can help them by finding out as much as they can about this device.
Wedge Antilles is in the Thanta Zilbra system trying to evacuate people from the threat of a star blowing up. Rumors are someone has threatened to destroy it and several others in some convoluted plot that may have the Chief of State caught up on it. Wedge doesn’t put much stock in rumors because, after all, how does one blow up a star? The people they are supposed to be evacuating don’t believe it either and a lot of them are refusing to leave. It’s hard for the New Republic reps to convince them otherwise when they have a hard time believing it themselves.
After changing into fresh coveralls in the pilot ready room, Wedge heads to the operations room to find out if there are any status updates. The room is deadly quiet and he’s told that, somehow, the star has actually exploded.
He flies constant runabout missions to grab those who looked at their sun and realized it was time to leave. They pack person after person into the transports, leaving belongings behind, until there is no more room. It is chaotic as children are pushed onto ships by their parents and those who stubbornly refuse to leave are prevailed upon by their loved ones. Some private ships leave but, in the chaos, they cause more problems than they are worth. Finally, with no more time or room left, the ships are forced to leave countless numbers behind.
The explosion happens right on schedule and the list they have includes many more worlds in danger if the novas cannot be stopped.
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  • Something that I’ve not brought up before now is that everyone thinks that being able to cause a star to explode is impossible. Doesn’t anyone remember the Sun Crusher? Wasn’t that able to to cause a supernova? Shouldn’t Wedge remember that?
  • BTW, is Wedge still a general? If he is, why is he running transport duty?

End of Book 2


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