Apocalypse outlet sale (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi high quality - Legends) outlet sale

Apocalypse outlet sale (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi high quality - Legends) outlet sale

Apocalypse outlet sale (Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi high quality - Legends) outlet sale
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
In the stunning finale of the epic Fate of the Jedi series, Jedi and Sith face off—with Coruscant as their battlefield. For the Sith, it’s the chance to restore their dominance over the galaxy that forgot them for so long. For Abeloth, it’s a giant step in her quest to conquer all life everywhere. For Luke Skywalker, it’s a call to arms to eradicate the Sith and their monstrous new master once and for all.
 
In a planetwide strike, teams of Jedi Knights take the Sith infiltrators by swift and lethal surprise. But victory against the cunning and savage Abeloth, and the terrifying endgame she has planned, is anything but certain. And as Luke, Ben, Han, Leia, Jaina, Jag, and their allies close in, the devastating truth about the dark side incarnate will be exposed—and send shock waves through the Jedi Order, the galaxy, and the Force itself.
 
There can be no surrender. There will be no mercy.
It’s not just the future of the galaxy at stake.
It’s the destiny of the Force.

About the Author

Troy Denning is the New York Times bestselling author of the Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi novels: Abyss, Vortex, and Apocalypse; Star Wars: Tatooine Ghost; Star Wars: The New Jedi Order: Star by Star; the Star Wars: Dark Nest trilogy: The Joiner King, The Unseen Queen, and The Swarm War; and Star Wars: Legacy of the Force: Tempest, Inferno, and Invincible—as well as Pages of Pain, Beyond the High Road, The Summoning, and many other novels. A former game designer and editor, he lives in western Wisconsin with his wife, Andria.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter One

The starliner swung into orbit around the planet Coruscant, and beyond the observation bubble appeared the glittering expanse of a billion golden lights. Through a thousand centuries of strife, those lights had continued to shine. Nothing had dimmed their brilliance— not the Rakatan enslavement, not the tyranny of the Empire, not the chaos of civil war. And they continued to shine now, in this new age of creeping shadow, when enemy impostors ruled the Galactic Alliance and Sith Lords slept in the Jedi Temple itself. But all those gleaming lights made Jaina Solo wonder whether Coruscant’s trillion residents actually cared who won the coming war—whether it mattered that they were living under Sith rule, so long as those billion lights continued to shine.

The answer came to her almost instantly, in the form of a dark tinge in the Force that could only mean Sith. Jaina shifted her gaze to the interior of the starliner, where a teeming mass of passengers hung floating in their transit harnesses, tethered to the walls of the EconoClass hold. Floating down the central access aisle was a Coruscanti Immigration inspector, his zero-g motility pack emitting small hisses as he twirled in slow-motion cartwheels, demanding identichips and ten- credit “expediting fees.” Behind him followed a pair of Bothan escorts, their snouts wrinkling in disdain each time their superior solicited another bribe.

Jaina would have liked to believe the inspector was merely a greedy Sith Saber trying to line his pockets, but she knew better. Vestara Khai, newly defected from the Lost Tribe of Sith, had warned the assault teams to take nothing for granted. In her briefings, Vestara had emphasized that the Sith were not stupid. After insinuating themselves in the Galactic Alliance Senate, they would have moved quickly to take control of the Coruscanti Immigration Service and other key bureaucracies. They would expect the Jedi to be coming, and they would be on the lookout for infiltrators—and petty extortion was an ideal cover for someone trying to identify enemy agents.

The inspector stopped near a pair of human siblings in their late twenties. Both were slender and good-looking, with wary eyes and small expressive mouths. The sister’s hair was reddish brown, the brother’s merely brown. Their fierce loyalty to each other showed in the way they remained shoulder-to-shoulder when they turned to face the immigration team.

The inspector oriented himself to the same attitude as the siblings— head-down relative to Jaina—and studied the pair without speaking or reaching for their travel documents. The unexpected change of routine sent a cold ripple through Jaina, but she quickly let out a calming breath and forced herself to relax. Allowing her alarm to permeate the Force would only confirm to the inspector that he had found some- thing worth investigating.

The siblings, Jedi Knights Valin and Jysella Horn, continued to hold their documents, doing a good job of looking like ordinary passengers who were a little bit nervous. The inspector narrowed his eyes and waited, giving them a chance to betray themselves by doing some- thing foolish. Jaina would probably never learn exactly what had caught the Sith’s attention, but she did know that it pointed to the one weakness of the Jedi Masters’ attack plan. These Sith were both careful and capable, and they outnumbered the Jedi ten to one.



Finally, the inspector said, “Documents.”

Valin and Jysella extended their hands, each holding a small packet containing a fare receipt, a forged identichip, and the expediting fee. The inspector took Jysella’s packet, then slid her chip into a handheld reader and compared it with the point of origin listed on the fare receipt.

“You were born on Kalla Seven?” the inspector asked. “That’s right,” Jysella lied. “My brother and I both.”

The inspector glanced at Valin, then asked him, “Is this a family trip?”

Valin shook his head. “No, my sister and I are traveling alone.”

“Is that so?” The questions were the mundane sort that customs officers all over the galaxy used to probe for story discrepancies. But the real test would be taking place on another level, Jaina knew, with the inspector searching their Force auras for the sour hint of a lie. “Then you’ve come to visit family?”

“No,” Jysella replied confidently. Like every Jedi on the assault

force, she had spent weeks perfecting her ability to lie without betraying herself in the Force. “We’re tourists.”

“I see.” The inspector glanced at her fare receipt again, then spoke to Valin in a casual voice. “Four thousand credits is a lot of money to visit a few monuments and museums. You should have used the HoloNet instead.”

“And spend our lives stuck in lower management?” Valin retorted. “I think not.”

“If you haven’t been to Coruscant,” Jysella added, “you go nowhere

at UHI.”

“UHI?” the inspector asked.

“Unlimited Horizons Incorporated,” she explained, managing to sound just astonished enough to imply that she thought everyone knew what the acronym stood for. “You know—the UHI that controls most of the pallodenite reserves in the Corporate Sector?”

“Ah . . . that UHI.” The inspector had clearly been put off balance by the tactic—just as Vestara had predicted. The Lost Tribe’s greatest weakness lay in their inexperience with the greater galaxy. Vestara had said that the quickest way to put a Lost Tribe impostor on the defensive would be to play on that ignorance. “There are so many.” When the inspector pocketed the bribe and returned Jysella’s documents, Jaina finally began to breathe easier. She turned her gaze back to the observation bubble and saw that the Plain Lady was crossing the terminator line into Coruscant’s daylight side. It would not be long now, she knew, before she was on the surface, fighting to save her homeworld . . . again.







Bazel Warv was “Jade Masher,” a celebrated Ramoan float wrestler. Seff Hellin was his human manager, and Vaala Razelle was Seff ’s Arcona assistant. The three had just arrived from a series of grudge matches in the Bothan system, and they were passing through the Galactic Center Spaceport on their way to a championship match at the Iblis Globe. All Bazel had to do was remember all that—and believe it. Belief was the key to defeating a Force-user’s ability to detect lies. As long as Bazel truly felt like Jade Masher—the newest, greatest rising star in the Pan-Galactic Float Wrestling Syndicate—he would have no trouble fooling Coruscant’s new immigration inspectors. His friend Yaqeel Saav’etu had assured him of that.

Bazel glanced across the sea of heads that were in Arrival Lobby

757 and found Yaqeel three lines over. She was already at her inspection station, standing alongside another Bothan Jedi, Yantahar Bwua’tu. Wearing the ash-gray tabards of businessbeings, the two Jedi Knights were at the front of a long line of passengers waiting to be formally admitted onto a planet that had once greeted visitors with open arms. So far, the Coruscanti populace seemed willing to believe that these new precautions were due to an influx of spice lords, and Bazel was glad. There was no need for the citizens of Coruscant to get hurt—not when the Jedi were coming to save them.

But first the Jedi had to get past the inspection stations, and that part of the plan wasn’t going well for Yaqeel and Yantahar. Their Duros immigration inspector had been joined by his captain, a narrow-eyed blond whom Bazel judged to be fairly beautiful for a human. She was firing questions at the Bothans faster than they could answer. Meanwhile, a squad of body-armored Galactic Alliance Security guards were standing ready at a nearby security post. Clearly, something was wrong.



Bazel cocked an ear in Yaqeel’s direction, consciously tuning out the general din of the lobby and opening himself to the Force. A cool haze of fear permeated the line a few meters behind him, but he had been sensing that off and on since debarking the starliner. There did not seem to be anything menacing in the aura, so he ignored it and focused on the conversation between his friends and the blond immigration captain. His thick hide began to prickle with the bitter margin of a dark side Force aura. Suddenly he understood why his Bothan friends were having trouble.

Sith.

Ignoring the growing press of the crowd behind him, Bazel ex- tended his Force awareness toward the security post. To his relief, he felt only the weak auras of non-Force-sensitive guards. The immigration captain was the only Sith in the area—probably just a Saber, as- signed to keep watch on the arrival lobby.

“. . . all the way to Coruscant to place an order you could have filled anywhere in the galaxy?” the impostor-captain was asking. “United Hydrologic Institute is hardly the only Tibanna gas supplier in the Mid Rim.”

“But it is the only one with access to Hutt space,” Yantahar replied in his gravelly Bothan voice. “And since Nar Kagga will be the closest inhabited system to our operation, naturally we want to be certain of our supply chain.”

“And your operation will be . . . what, exactly?” the blond impostor asked.

“A trade secret, I’m afraid.” Yaqeel glanced around the inspection

station, then added, “There are spies everywhere, Captain. I’m sure you understand.”

The Sith’s reply grew inaudible when Bazel’s human “manager” grabbed the huge Ramoan’s wrist and asked, “Masher, you awake up there?” Seff Hellin started forward, trying to pull Bazel into the gap that had opened in the line ahead of them. “We’re holding things up.” Bazel paid no attention, for over at the station where his friends were being questioned, the impostor-captain was looking over Yaqeel’s shoulder toward the security post. When the Sith gave a slight nod, the guards drew their stubby Merr-Sonn Urban blaster rifles and started toward the inspection station.



Vaala grabbed Bazel by the other wrist. “Mighty Masher, sir.” The Arcona’s voice was soft and bubbly. “We really should keep moving.” Bazel shook his head, then stepped through the cordon-beams that marked the edge of the queuing area. With matching sighs, Seff and Vaala stepped out of line behind him, each pulling a pair of expensive

Levalug travel cases that were large enough for Vaala to sleep inside.

“Masher!” Seff growled, putting just enough frustration into his voice to sound like a weary manager at the end of his wits. “There’s no time for your temper right now. We have only two hours before the weigh-in.”

They wouldn’t be making the weigh-in, Bazel rumbled in his native Ramoan. He could speak Basic when necessary, but his large mouth had trouble shaping the common language’s delicate vowels and subtle consonants, and he needed to make himself clearly understood. Yaqeel was in trouble, he explained, and he was not going to leave until she was safe.

Seff groaned and carefully avoided looking toward Yaqeel and Yantahar. “Drawing attention to ourselves won’t help anyone, Masher,” he said. “Our friends can take care of their own problems.”

As Seff spoke, the GAS guards shouldered their blaster rifles and fanned out behind Yaqeel and Yantahar. The two Bothans reluctantly opened their tabards, and the Sith impostor-captain stepped forward to frisk them. Bazel knew the woman wouldn’t find a lightsaber or anything else to identify his two friends as Jedi Knights. The assault team’s equipment had been shipped ahead, and it would be returned to them later, by an operative from the Club Bwua’tu resistance society. But Bazel also knew the impostor wouldn’t be searching his friends at all if she hadn’t sensed that something was amiss. He had to find a way to distract her before she confirmed her suspicions . . . a way that wouldn’t seem like it was a distraction.

Vaala clamped a three-fingered hand around one of Bazel’s stubby fingers and quietly bent it back against the joint. “Mighty Masher, sir, we need to focus on our match.” She tried to lead him through the cordon-beams back into the processing line. “The, uh, championship is still on, even if a couple of competitors can’t make it to the arena.” Balling his hand into a fist to stop Vaala from hurting his finger,



Bazel remained where he was. If a pair of clever Bothans couldn’t make it past the immigration inspectors, he replied quietly, there was no reason to think he could. Besides, they didn’t know how many of their peers had already been captured, and if the Sith caught even two teams of infiltrators trying to sneak onto the planet, the Jedi would find themselves attacking without the advantage of surprise, and the battle would grow very big very fast. A lot of innocent civilians would get caught in the crossfire, maybe a million of them, and Bazel wasn’t going to allow that. He was going to find another way.

Seff exhaled in exasperation. “What other way?”

Bazel wasn’t sure. Maybe he could go on a rampage. That would draw attention away from Yaqeel and Yantahar.

“Don’t you think that would be a bit obvious, Mighty Masher, sir?”

asked Vaala.

Bazel nodded. Tactical planning wasn’t his strong point, he re- minded them, but he could tell that Seff and Vaala just wanted to follow orders, and that meant he had to develop his own idea. Maybe he could just bull ahead to the front of the line and try to push past the processing station.

“And get yourself arrested instead?” Seff lowered his voice to a whisper. “Do you really think you can outwit an interrogator better than a pair of Bothans?”

Bazel had to admit that was unlikely. What he needed was to present the impostor-captain with another reason for the anxiety she seemed to be sensing in Yaqeel’s and Yantahar’s Force auras. He thought for a moment, then turned back toward the line he had just left and opened himself to the Force.

Soon he felt the same cool haze of fear he had noticed earlier, a cloud of uncertainty and dismay centered on a small cluster of amphibious Ishi Tib who had clearly not been informed of the new security procedures on Coruscant. The three females were shuffling forward reluctantly, propelled by the pressure of the crowd at their backs, while their male escort was slowly swiveling his eyestalks about, trying to appear casual as he searched for a way to bypass the inspection station. All four carried identical luggage—large kaadu-hide traveling cases with matching satchels slung over their shoulders—and it was obvious by their reluctance to set their baggage on the floor that they were as worried about losing it as they were about being caught with the contents.

Spice.

Bazel stepped back through the cordon-beam. Using the Force, he gently opened a path in front of him, then began to work his way toward the pod of smugglers. Seff and Vaala followed close on his heels, Seff grabbing for his sleeve.

“Masher, the inspection station is the other way.”

Bazel growled that Seff and Vaala should go on. He had a better plan.

“I’m not sure changing plans is a good idea at the moment,” Vaala objected. “The promoters are counting on you.”

The promoters were counting on them all, Bazel reminded her, and if he saw a way to save Yaqeel and Yantahar, he was going to try it. He came to an Aqualish couple who had taken advantage of the path he had opened to sneak forward. The pair glared at him defiantly, daring him to object. He merely shouldered them aside and stepped over to the Ishi Tib, who instinctively shied away and looked as though they were going to flee.

Bazel distracted them by raising his stubby-fingered hand in a calming gesture, then spoke in Basic, warning them about the security check ahead.

The male curled his eyestalks forward in confusion. “What?” he asked. “Check your head?”

“There’s a security check ahead,” Vaala clarified, stepping to

Bazel’s side. She glanced up at him, silently signaling her reluctant acceptance of his new plan. Then she turned back to the smugglers and put a little Force energy into her voice. “You should allow our friend to take those packages across for you.”

The Ishi Tib let their beaks gape in surprise. “You’re with . . . them?”

“Did you think they would leave a shipment this big to chance?”

Seff asked, also joining them. As the line continued to shuffle past, he lowered his voice and pointed at Bazel. “You need to hand over the cases now.”



The male’s eyestalks quivered slightly, and he turned to his three companions. “We need to hand our cases over.” He gave his traveling case to Bazel, then took the satchel off his shoulder and passed it over, as well. “Now.”

The three females were all too happy to obey, and within moments

Bazel had four satchels slung over his head and four heavy cases tucked beneath his arms. Seff watched as the much-relieved Ishi Tib melted back into the processing line, then looked up at Bazel.

“You’re sure about this?”

Bazel glanced across the lobby toward Yaqeel and Yantahar. They had already removed their outer tabards, and now they stood with their fingers interlaced behind their heads while the imposter-captain searched their pockets. As soon as the Sith found something to use as an excuse for an arrest, she would turn his friends over to her superiors for “questioning.” Yaqeel and Yantahar could withstand any kind of normal interrogation, Bazel knew, but nobody could withstand Force torture. Under that kind of pressure, even Yaqeel would start to reveal important details about the Jedi plan—how Nek and Eramuth Bwua’tu had been running a secret intelligence network, for instance, or how many Jedi Knights had landed on Coruscant. She might even reveal how much the Jedi truly knew about what was happening on the planet.

Bazel nodded. He assured his companions that he would meet them at the original rendezvous point, and then he began to work his way across the lobby toward his friends. Although it was impossible for a being his size to cut across so many processing lines without drawing attention, Bazel attempted to do exactly that, sliding into each line from the side and shooting a menacing glower at anyone who appeared to object. By the time he reached the target line, the impostor- captain and her GA Security guards were frowning in his direction.

Continuing to hold the Ishi Tib’s traveling cases beneath his long arms, Bazel looked away and pretended not to notice that he was being watched. Of course, the act didn’t fool anyone.

“You there!” the Sith barked. “Step forward.”

Bazel continued to look at the ceiling, pretending to study one of the giant sparkle balls that provided illumination for the lobby.

“You, the big green one!” the Sith called again. “Come forward.”



Bazel turned his head away, then heard the clatter of two GAS guards shoving through the crowd. He started to move away, the line now parting before him to avoid getting caught in a fight.

A reedy Rodian voice ordered, “Halt!”

“Don’t make us use the shock net, big fella,” added the second guard, a human male. “There’s nowhere for you to go.”

Bazel dropped his chin and let out a long, lip-flapping moan, then slowly turned to face the two guards. The human was aiming a big- barreled netgun at him. The Rodian had shouldered his blaster rifle.

“You are talking to me?” Bazel asked in his rumbling Basic. “Sorry—I didn’t know.”

The guards scowled at his thick accent, then the Rodian motioned him toward the inspection station. “Captain Suhale wants to see you.” “You are taking me to the front of the line?” Bazel forced a nervous

grin. “Thank you.”

He walked a dozen paces to the front of the line, taking pains to be obvious about trying to avoid the eyes of both the Sith female— Captain Suhale—and the two Bothans she was questioning. Suhale let him continue until he was almost past the station, then spoke in a voice so cold it sent a shiver down his back.

“I will have them open fire, you know.”

Bazel stopped and slowly turned to face her. This close up, the Sith was more intimidating than beautiful, with cold lavender eyes and cheekbones so prominent they looked like stone. He glanced toward Yaqeel and Yantahar, who were doing a good job of concealing any alarm they might be feeling, then looked away so quickly he could al- most feel Yaqeel cringing at his ineptitude.

Perfect.

“Thank you,” Suhale said. “Now, why are you keeping a watch on these two Bothans?”

“Bothans?” Bazel made a point of not looking in Yaqeel’s direction.

“I don’t know any Bothans.”

Suhale’s eyes flared. “You’re lying,” she said. “And I want to know why. Shall we have a look inside those traveling cases you’re carrying?” Bazel shook his head and clamped the cases more tightly beneath

his arms.

“I wasn’t asking.” Suhale nodded at one of the guards, and the Rodian pressed a blaster muzzle into the small of Bazel’s back. “Place them on the table.”

Bazel exhaled loudly, then glanced toward Yaqeel as though looking for permission.

Yaqeel frowned in obvious confusion, then demanded, “Why are you looking at me, Green Thing?”

“I was just wondering the same thing,” Suhale replied. She crooked a finger and motioned Bazel forward. “Come now. Matters will go very hard on you if I am forced to tell you again.”

Bazel reluctantly placed the traveling cases on the inspection table, then removed the matching shoulder satchels from around his neck and placed them on the table, as well.

“That wasn’t so hard, was it?” Suhale motioned to the first case. “Open it.”

Bazel stood the case upright, then leaned over the latch . . . and saw the weakness in his plan.

Locks.

Confident that his thumbprint wasn’t going to deactivate the security mechanism, Bazel thought for a moment, trying to recall his lectures on spice smuggling. Finally, he held his huge thumb above the tiny scanning pad and shrugged.

“I can’t.”

Suhale scowled. “What do you mean you can’t?” she demanded. “They’re your cases, aren’t they?”

Bazel turned to Yaqeel. Her narrowed eyes suggested that she had finally begun to understand his plan, but she merely curled her lip and snarled, “Like I said, why are you looking at me?”

“Because the cases are yours, obviously,” Suhale said. “Open them.

Now.”

“You open them,” Yaqeel retorted. “They’re not mine.”

“Or mine,” Yantahar added before Suhale could look in his direction. “I’ve never seen them before. Not the big green thing, either.”

“Very well,” Suhale said, pulling a vibroknife from her equipment belt. “I’ll open them.”

Before she could activate the blade, the original inspector’s blue hand shot out to catch her by the wrist. “Captain, you might want to reconsider that.”



Suhale shot the Duros a scowl that suggested she was considering using the tool on him instead. “And why would that be, Inspector?”

The Duros seemed genuinely surprised. “Spice smuggling, ma’am. The containers may be rigged to keep the couriers from stealing the cargo.”

“Spice?” Suhale turned back to Bazel, the disappointment in her voice a clear suggestion that she was there to catch Jedi, not smugglers. “Is that what you’re carrying?”

Bazel dropped his gaze and tipped his head toward Yaqeel. “Ask

her.”

“You’re dead, Ramoan,” Yaqeel rasped, taking her cue from Bazel. “You know that, right?”

Suhale smirked, though without enthusiasm. “I do believe that

sounds like a yes.”

She placed her thumbs over the scanning pads. Bazel felt a slight stirring in the Force, and the latches popped. The Duros inspector cringed openly—then drew a look of open disdain from Suhale.

“There’s nothing to be afraid of, Inspector Modt,” she said. “It wasn’t locked, after all.”

The Duros—Inspector Modt—stepped back anyway. Confident that Suhale had used the Force to disable the explosives before she un- locked the case, Bazel remained next to the inspection table as she spread it open. The interior was filled with clothes in the glistening materials favored by sea species—sleeveless zhoopsuits in teal scalara, shimmersilk blouses in every color beneath the water.

Suhale pulled out a short orange dress and held it up between her

and Yaqeel, then frowned. “Not really your style.” “Do I look Ishi?” Yaqeel replied quickly.

“That’s hardly relevant,” Modt said.

“Why not?” Suhale asked.

Modt studied her for a long time, his raised chin betraying the con- tempt he felt for a “superior” who obviously did not have the slightest experience catching smugglers. This ignorance of galactic culture was, Bazel knew, a great part of the reason the Jedi were going to defeat the Lost Tribe.

Finally, Modt said, “It’s a common technique.” He reached over and pulled the Ishi Tib clothes out of the case. “Smugglers establish inconsistencies so that if they’re caught carrying contraband, they can claim the luggage belongs to someone else.”

Modt ran his long Duros fingers along the inner edge of the case, then tore the lining away from the top, near the latches, and pulled out a detonator wire. He removed a detonite charge large enough to blast the entire inspection area back to protons and electrons, then used a laser scalpel to carefully cut away the travel case’s interior panel. Packed into the space between the panel and the outer shell was a thin layer of blue paste, its surface sparkling with millions of microscopic yellow crystals.

The Duros touched the tip of his smallest finger to the paste, then shuddered and jerked his hand away. “Neutron pixie,” he gasped. “Pure!”

“Pure?” Suhale glanced at the other three cases, though she still seemed disappointed at having caught nothing more than a few spice smugglers. “It seems we have made quite a haul, then.”

“You could say that,” the Duros confirmed. “After it’s cut, this much pixie would have to be worth ten, maybe twenty million credits.” “That much?” Suhale grew thoughtful, then said, “You seem to have caught a team of smugglers. Perhaps you should take them into

custody.”

“My pleasure, Captain,” responded the Duros.

He signaled for the GAS squad to make the arrests, then closed the traveling case and motioned a couple of agents forward to seize the evidence. Bazel was not surprised to see Suhale raise a restraining hand. “The security team is going to have their hands full with the prisoners, I think,” she said, eyeing Bazel’s mountainous form. “I’ll bring

the spice along later.”

The Duros’ eyes narrowed in suspicion, but he did not attempt to object. There was a new order on Coruscant, and it did not like to be questioned.

A pair of GAS agents pulled Bazel’s arms behind his back and slapped his wrists into a set of oversized stun cuffs. As they spun him toward their security post, Yaqeel caught his eye, then nodded and flashed a barely perceptible smile. Bazel almost winked. They both knew the hard part was behind them. All they had to do now was escape a security detail, and that was not going to be a problem.



* * *



The hologram of a human newscaster was floating above the boarding berth, a huge female face with pouty lips, amber eyes, and a radiant complexion. The few passengers still lingering in the area seemed transfixed by her silken voice, which rolled across the platform in a steady, hypnotic patter that Luke Skywalker recognized as a Force technique designed to lull listeners into a receptive state of mind.

“Citizens are advised to avoid confronting members of the Jedi Spice Cartel,” the newscaster was saying. Intelligence reports from Eramuth Bwua’tu identified her as Kayala Fei, a Sith Saber who had been planted on the staff at the BAMR News Network. “All members are known to be trained assassins, and most have a documented history of violence.”

Fei’s image was replaced by one of Luke himself, and her lilting voice continued, “In other news, rumors persist that the overlord of the Jedi Spice Cartel, Luke Skywalker, has returned to Coruscant. Citizens are ordered to report all possible sightings of Skywalker—either to the nearest GAS agent, or through normal emergency channels.”

The hologram switched again, this time to an image of a dark- haired male. As handsome as Fei was beautiful, he had a coppery complexion, violet eyes, and a thin face with sharp features.

“GAS Superintendent Vhool continues to investigate the full scope of the Jedi spicerunning operation,” Fei’s voice said. “Vhool believes the Jedi are running spice to finance their own covert operations, including attempts to subvert the abolitionist organization known as Freedom Flight. Senior officers have suggested that their intention is to destabilize the Galactic Alliance by overthrowing legitimate governments along the entire galactic rim.”

Luke looked away in disgust. The Jedi were no more attempting to subvert Freedom Flight than they were running spice, but BAMR was such a tool of the Sith that it did not even bother to pretend its propaganda had any basis in fact.

On the opposite side of the half-empty platform, Luke saw two members of his infiltration team, Doran Tainer and Seha Dorvald, trying to catch his eye. Dressed in the festive, rumpled clothes of vacationers returning home from a trip packed with more dancing and gambling than relaxation, the two Jedi Knights were almost indistinguishable from the handful of passengers between them and Luke. The one difference was how alert they seemed, how unaffected they were by the hypnotic lies rolling from Kayala Fei’s shapely mouth.

Once it grew clear that they had caught Luke’s eye, Seha’s gaze slid away, as though her attention had shifted. Doran tipped his head toward the back of the platform, where a long pedramp descended from the arrival lobby of the Manarai Heights Spaceport.

For a moment Luke thought they were trying to draw his attention to the tall, broad-shouldered male just stepping onto the top of the pedramp. His face was decorated with a web of dark, awl-shaped lines radiating outward from an angry gaze. At first glance, the fellow appeared to be a member of the Lost Tribe attempting to follow Luke’s assault team in full vor’shandi face markings. But as the man descended, it grew apparent that his chiseled features were much too weathered and rugged to be those of a Sith from Kesh, and that the face markings were, in fact, permanent tattoos. Still, there was a darkness in the man’s Force aura that Luke found troubling, and he continued to think this was the object of Doran’s attention until the tattooed man suddenly met Luke’s gaze and nodded toward the other side of the pedramp.

Ascending the up-lane was a squad of GAS guards who had arrived on the last levtram. Their ill-fitting uniforms and bellicose demeanor identified them as new recruits, many of whom Chief of State Kem had rushed into service shortly after assuming office. Their sergeant was at the rear of the squad, his handsome face showing in profile as he scrutinized a teenage couple descending the other side of the pedramp.

Luke saw no reason for the scrutiny, no mistakes in disguise or behavior to suggest that Ben Skywalker and Vestara Khai were anything other than the two young lovers they were clearly becoming. Their arms were entwined around each other’s waists so tightly they seemed joined at the hip, and the affection they felt for each other was a bright heat in the Force. Both were dressed in the latest teenage fashion— sparkling capes over black exercise suits. They had even dyed their hair the same shade of yellow, and they wore it in equally outrageous styles, Ben’s gelled into double head-fins and Vestara’s lacquered into a straight fall that just brushed her shoulders.



And yet the GAS sergeant continued to stare as the pedramp carried them closer, his attention locking on Vestara. She did a good job of pretending to be unnerved by the scrutiny, allowing her gaze to continually drift back in his direction to see if he was still watching her. Then, when they had drawn to within a few meters of each other, she finally turned on him with a withering teenage sneer.

The sergeant merely smirked and held her gaze.

She looked away almost instantly, and Luke cursed beneath his breath. The recognition had been as plain to see in Vestara’s shock as it had been in the sergeant’s smirk, and that could only mean they knew each other from her time as an apprentice in the Lost Tribe of the Sith.

Luke glanced back toward the tattoo-faced stranger and found the man’s gaze resolutely locked on the BAMR news holo above the plat- form. Whoever he was—perhaps one of Club Bwua’tu’s more sinister operatives—he clearly had no wish to involve himself any deeper than he already had.

And that was fine with Luke. He used his eyes to signal Doran and Seha back onto the pedramp, then began to drift toward the rear of the platform, feeling more frustrated by the turn of events than alarmed. All of the other teams had reported a flawless infiltration, and now an unlikely coincidence threatened to eliminate the advantage of surprise. It reminded him of one of Nek Bwua’tu’s favorite maxims: No battle plan survives the first ten minutes of battle.

As Luke drew near the pedramp, he unleashed a powerful burst of Force energy. The hologram of Kayala Fei dissolved into static, and every comlink on the platform began to chime for attention. In the same instant the Sith sergeant whirled around with narrowed eyes, obviously searching for the source of the tempest he had just felt in the Force. Then the overhead illumination panels began to sizzle out, and the sergeant’s gaze found Luke just as the entire waiting area was plunged into darkness.

Luke felt the sergeant—the impostor-sergeant—reaching for him in the Force. He allowed the Sith to grab hold—then pulled, jerking the man off the pedramp. The sergeant let out a muffled cry of surprise, then activated his lightsaber in mid-flight.

The lightsaber was a big mistake. Totally unaware of their sergeant’s true identity, one of the GAS recruits cried out in alarm, and another yelled, “Jedi!”

Blasterfire began to scream out from the pedramp, turning the darkened platform into a blinding storm of color and flashes. The impostor began to bat bolts back toward the GAS recruits, and shrieking passengers raced about in the dark, slamming into walls and one an- other.

Then the impostor landed less than two meters away from Luke. He whirled into a shoulder-high slash, simultaneously batting bolts aside and trying to behead Luke. With his own lightsaber still waiting for him at the rendezvous point, Luke could only drop to a crouch and spin into a sweeping heel kick, which the Sith avoided by leaping back out of range.

A gurgle of pain and astonishment suddenly spilled from the sergeant’s mouth, then his lightsaber dropped to his side and deactivated. An instant later his body thumped to the platform, and he began to wail in agony.

“Everyone okay?” Vestara asked, using the wailing of her victim to mask her own voice.

“Yep,” Ben answered. When he spoke again, his voice was moving closer to Vestara. “Are you?”

“I’m fine.” Vestara’s voice was warm. “How about you, old man?” “Not a scratch,” Luke said, more surprised at Vestara’s quick reaction than he should have been. How many times had she saved his life?

And Ben’s? “Thanks . . . again.” “My pleasure,” Vestara said.

More blasterfire sounded from high up the pedramp, followed by the snap of breaking bones and the thud of bodies being thrown into walls. In the flashing light, Luke caught a glimpse of two athletic shadows—Doran and Seha—leaping over the separation barrier onto the down side of the pedramp.

“A levtram should be arriving any second,” Luke said. “You two go ahead and board.”

“You coming?” Ben asked out of the darkness.

“Right behind you.” Luke reached out in the Force and found the boiling cloud of anguish that was the wounded impostor’s Force aura. He hated the idea of killing any enemy in cold blood—even a Sith. But he couldn’t take Sith prisoners, and leaving the man alive was not an option. He had recognized Vestara Khai, and if he survived to report that to his superiors, the Lost Tribe would realize that the Jedi had arrived. “I need to take care of something.”

A soft female hand touched his arm. “No, you don’t,” Vestara said. “He’s not going to tell anyone what he saw.”

The lights of a levtram appeared in the transit lane, and Luke felt Doran and Seha reaching out to him as they scurried past. They were pouring reassurance into the Force, letting him know that the fight had been obscured by darkness. And that meant it would be difficult to confirm that Jedi had been involved. After all, no matter what the GAS recruits thought they had seen, anyone the Sith sent to investigate would quickly realize that the only lightsaber involved belonged to a member of the Lost Tribe.

Luke breathed a sigh of relief, then glanced toward the levtram boarding berth. In the brightening glow of its headlamps, he could al- ready see the silhouettes of dozens of passengers lining up to escape the chaos on the platform. He turned back toward Vestara’s voice. The recruits might not have anything useful to tell their superiors, but their wounded leader would.

“Go,” he ordered her. “I won’t be a second.”

“No,” Vestara replied. “Trust me. He won’t live long enough to tell anyone anything.”

Something small and glassy shattered on the platform at her feet, and Luke realized why the impostor was still screaming in anguish. Vestara had attacked him with a shikkar, a glass stiletto used by members of the Lost Tribe to express disdain for the victim of the assault. After stabbing an enemy, they would snap off the hilt and leave the blade buried deep in a vital organ, condemning the victim to a death as certain as it was painful.

“I had to use his own shikkar against him, so the High Lords will assume this is a vendetta killing.” Vestara tried to pull Luke toward the boarding berth. “But it won’t work if we’re still standing over the body when the lights come on.”

“We won’t be.” Luke pulled his arm free. As much as he admired Vestara’s quick thinking, there was a ruthlessness in her casual willingness to prolong the man’s anguish—a coldness—that made him wonder if she would ever be capable of becoming a true Jedi Knight. She still didn’t seem to understand that the way a person won a battle was far more important than whether she won it. “But there’s no need to make him suffer. Dead is dead.”

Luke reached out in the Force and found the sensation of burning cold that was the shikkar buried inside the Sith’s torso. It seemed to be only a few millimeters below the throbbing fire of the man’s heart, a placement likely to kill him a bit more slowly than Vestara believed. Luke touched the blade in the Force and tipped it upward just a millimeter—then heard the impostor gasp as it sliced into his heart.

Vestara’s hand tightened on Luke’s arm. “What happened? You didn’t—”

“It will look like the blade shifted,” Luke assured her. “Even the

High Lords will never know why. Who was he?”

“An old friend of my father’s,” Vestara said, sounding a bit sad and disappointed. “Master Myal.”

“I see,” Luke replied.

The levtram arrived at the boarding berth and opened its doors, and panicked passengers from the platform began to push inside with- out giving anyone on board a chance to debark. Luke took a moment to look around, then—when he did not see any trace of the tattooed man from the pedramp—he and Vestara pushed into the panicked crowd.

As they entered the glow from the lights inside the car, Luke was surprised to see that there were tears welling in Vestara’s eyes.

“What did he do to make you hate him so much?”

“Hate him?” Vestara looked up to meet Luke’s gaze. “I didn’t hate him. He was always very kind to me.”

Luke frowned. “Then you used his own shikkar because . . .” “Because I didn’t have mine, and we have a war to win.” Vestara rose onto her tiptoes and whispered into his ear. “I did it for the Jedi cause, Master Skywalker.”

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Top reviews from the United States

DAVID C.
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
As much as I enjoy almost anything Star Wars
Reviewed in the United States on September 13, 2017
As much as I enjoy almost anything Star Wars, this left a lot of things wanting. The whole potential of what could have been with Vestara is wasted. I get the potential he''s leaving wide open here for various story lines and yet doesn''t seem to realize how truly limiting he... See more
As much as I enjoy almost anything Star Wars, this left a lot of things wanting. The whole potential of what could have been with Vestara is wasted. I get the potential he''s leaving wide open here for various story lines and yet doesn''t seem to realize how truly limiting he has just made that whole story line. Bungled so badly you think somehow this had to be a joke at some point. I could go on but you get the idea. I put 3 stars because yes it winds up the series but once you are done reading it you will most likely come away feeling as I did, "That''s it?" That''s the best you could do? I grew up on Heinlein, Asimov and others and still reread many of their works marveling at their timelessness. And maybe that''s why I get so disappointed with these. Read them once and there''s barely enough there to keep you going much less leave you wanting to revisit them at a later time. The potential for confronting other Sith civilizations with Vestara and Ben facing many trials, Vestara being torn and tempted, their children growing up and being trained with potentially conflicting concepts, etc. Character and relationship development with so many twists and turns you''d need a map and still get lost. Well throw all that excitement and potential right down the tubes for just another rerun of good jedi, bad jedi stories. How boring.
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~~LA
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Ruined an otherwise EXCITING series.
Reviewed in the United States on October 8, 2013
First of all, the ending to the previous novel seems to me at the time to have been an afterthought. And then I read this garbage and understood why. It seems Mr. Denning just can''t leave a good thing alone. The idea of a sith girl born and bred being redeemed was just not... See more
First of all, the ending to the previous novel seems to me at the time to have been an afterthought. And then I read this garbage and understood why. It seems Mr. Denning just can''t leave a good thing alone. The idea of a sith girl born and bred being redeemed was just not good enough for him. After investing a lot in Vestari, Denning reverted her back into a villain to despise.
If this wasn''t bad enough, the showdown with Abeloth felt as if he had spent too much work making his bad guy TOO powerful, and didn''t know what to do about it. Like a bad episode of Dragonball Z, he essentially cheats his way out of it.
And then it gets worse.
I complained when The Old Republic decided to tell us that the Star Wars universe sprang from the ashes of an older empire, which sprang from one older than that. The cyclic history thing was really pointless to the SW Universe. Mass Effect did it okay, as a way to explain technology. Halo did it to set up a religious war. Star Wars did it too... well, I still can''t find a discernible reason other than "It''s what the cool kids are doing."
But Troy... Oh Mr. Denning, FOR SHAME! Lets turn the whole thing into the tales of King Arthur. Why not? I''m guessing that in Crucible I''m going to read about how Mara had some affair with Kyp Durron, and Ben finds out he has a bastard brother? Or will Leia Seduce Luke to produce Mordren? Or will he go full DBZ, Kill off Luke, and then have the other main characters track him down in heaven to bring him back to life?
The ending of this book is EXACTLY why I haven''t yet picked up a copy of Crucible. I know I will eventually, but for now I devote myself to catching up with Battletech Novels. At least none of them made me feel such disappointment.
DISNEY: PLEASE OMIT THIS NOVEL FROM CANON. WHILE YOU''RE AT IT, BRING BACK KAREN TRAVISS TO FINISH THE SAGA OF THE REPUBLIC COMMANDOS!
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Andrew P.
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Sound ending to Fate of the Jedi
Reviewed in the United States on March 27, 2013
A little over a decade ago the folks responsible for overseeing the Star Wars Expanded Universe decided to embrace sprawling multi-author epics as the center of the adult fiction line. While there have been various standalones and short series since the late 1990s, much of... See more
A little over a decade ago the folks responsible for overseeing the Star Wars Expanded Universe decided to embrace sprawling multi-author epics as the center of the adult fiction line. While there have been various standalones and short series since the late 1990s, much of Del Rey''s focus has been on multi-year publishing events. This trend started with the New Jedi Order''s nineteen books, continued with the nine volumes of Legacy of the Force, and now possibly concludes with the nine entries in Fate of the Jedi. While there are plenty of good stories and side plots contained within these thirty-seven novels, none of the three epics has offered a substantial enough storyline to warrant being spread across so many books. I''ve been reading the entire Expanded Universe using the in-universe chronology and getting to Apocalypse feels like a weight lifting.

The great news for Fate of the Jedi is despite its being stretched thin over too many books, the three authors have presented a highly consistent and generally very interesting tale. With Apocalypse, Troy Denning does indulge himself with some of his pet Star Wars creations: the insectile Killiks are wedged into the story and the not-very-relevant saga of the Barabels and their eggs comes to an end. But overall he follows right along with what the eight preceding volumes have established. Unlike his conclusion to Legacy of the Force, this book does not feel rushed and the length is warranted as he brings various plots to a close.

Summarizing Apocalypse seems a tad pointless: I would hope no one will pick it up without having read the rest of Fate of the Jedi and anyone who is already following along with the series will certainly finish with this final volume. But I''ll mention a few things that were of particular interest to me. The book''s pacing is solid: Mr. Denning does an admirable job of building multiple cascading action sequences as Abeloth''s various avatars are dealt with. There''s a real tension to the events on Coruscant as the Jedi infiltrate the Sith-run government and position themselves for the final conflict. Boba Fett swings into action with highly unlikely ally Tahiri in a gripping assault on Imperial labs.

One surprise in Apocalypse ties directly into one of the more cryptic story arcs of the Clone Wars television series. As a fan of that show, I was absolutely delighted at how the open-ended nature of the episodes in question dovetailed so neatly into the mystery of Abeloth. This cross-pollination of Star Wars stories is something I welcome for the heightened consistency and air of reality it gives to the galaxy far, far away. Mr. Denning uses the foundation those episodes offered and also utilizes the mysteries of the Maw and Centerpoint Station to give Abeloth quite a bit of interest. Her entire arc has a fantastical air about it considering her ancient lineage, her generically named locales (the Pool of Knowledge, for instance), and her seemingly almost limitless abilities. However, the authors have tied her sufficiently to key elements of the Star Wars universe for her to feel a true and reasonably grounded part of it.

I found Vestara Khai''s arc somewhat disappointing when evaluating the series as a whole. The obvious paths were for her to either stay a Sith or be "redeemed:" in Apocalypse, one of these two options comes true and there''s not much surprise about it. Her relationship with Ben Skywalker does seem to be fertile ground for future novels to play off of: whether that''s the case remains to be seen, since at this point no one outside of the people making the movies knows whether the movie Episode VII will be set after these books and whether it will take anything in the Expanded Universe into consideration. Vestara did have some good sparring with Ben and their relationship matured him further as a Jedi: I simply would have liked to see a little more surprise in her ending. Perhaps that is yet to come.

The book also features a very nice nod to the Legacy comics in the form of an unexpected ally for Luke in his final battle. Like the Clone Wars tie-in, it''s welcome to see the novels embracing other forms of Star Wars storytelling and making the sprawling universe more unified. There is still substantial mystery around Allana Solo''s future and the various competing visions for who will sit on a throne overseeing the galaxy, but Fate of the Jedi does set some of the stage for the Legacy comics and also leaves plenty of room for yet more stories set in the intervening years. While not at the height of his Star Wars masterpiece Star by Star, Mr. Denning delivers a very solid conclusion to Fate of the Jedi with Apocalypse.
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barleypopmaker
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A solid ending to the series
Reviewed in the United States on February 12, 2013
Some hardcore SW geeks are giving this series poor reviews because they don''t like the character Abeloth, or the connections to the celestials from the Clone Wars series, or that there are more than 2 sith. They find the stories don''t fit their ideas of what happens in the... See more
Some hardcore SW geeks are giving this series poor reviews because they don''t like the character Abeloth, or the connections to the celestials from the Clone Wars series, or that there are more than 2 sith. They find the stories don''t fit their ideas of what happens in the Star Wars universe, which is a very egocentric view of the expanded universe. In a world where even Luke himself is learning about the boundless possibilities of the force, how can we know what the boundaries are? I did find the whole series very entertaining and while I personally didn''t care for Abeloth, I can imagine her existence in the SW universe. After all, if Exar Kun''s spirit can exist and still manifest itself thousands of years after his death, Darth Sideous can move his essence into that of a clone, and Darth Bane can transfer is force essence into his apprentice at the time of his death, then the existence of Abeloth is not a far stretch. Because you don''t like a character, doesn''t mean they can''t belong. I don''t want to give away too much because if you are reading a review of the book, you obviously have not read it. While the book does a solid job of explaining the origins of Abeloth, the connection to the Killiks seems a bit forced. There is some brutally descriptive battles in the book, and Troy Denning does a great job of honoring reoccurring mainstream characters, yet not dragging out their death as a glorious event (come on, you didn''t think everyone was getting out of this alive did you). It''s brutal, yet honorable. The end finishes with just enough questions for more storylines in the future. Allana will obviously be a focal point as it is pointed out that she will become queen of the Jedi (or will it be Sith, that part is unclear). I do like how they tied in "the ones" or the celestials into the clone wars series. That helps to solidify a storyline that seems all out separate from the real Star Wars expanded universe. By tying in Obi Wan and Anakin''s meeting with the ones, it opens up the door for a storyline about what happens to Anakins apprentice, a plot of which lead some to believe that clone wars series would have been a fantasy or force vision in the end. This book ties the past and even the future of the Star Wars universe together. It''s well worth the read.
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Andrew P. Catton
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Epic Conclusion!
Reviewed in the United States on May 7, 2013
Spoilers: "Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi - Apocalypse" has so much happening in it that takes your breath away. From battles, to politics, to betrayal, to heartbreak, "Apocalypse" delivers a fine conclusion to the series while still leaving room for more... See more
Spoilers:

"Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi - Apocalypse" has so much happening in it that takes your breath away. From battles, to politics, to betrayal, to heartbreak, "Apocalypse" delivers a fine conclusion to the series while still leaving room for more stories.

Abeloth''s history is explained at last, linking to the third season of "Star Wars: The Clone Wars". This leads to an amazing section of the book in which Abeloth attempts to create a family with Ben Skywalker and his Sith girlfriend Vestara Khai. Luke, sometimes accused by fans of having no emotions, grapples with the fact that his heart is clouding his judgement as to how he should respond to the threat. We see Luke face Force philosophy and he begins to take on a new perspective.

The battles with Abeloth are nothing short of spectacular. This villain, horrifying and powerful, dies four times in this novel. Each fight is intense and vivid, and you are never quite sure what will happen.

Tahiri Veila and Jaina Solo re-emerge as powerful characters in the narrative, and both get to do some serious stuff to save the galaxy. I was happy to have these two heroines closer to the forefront, and you''ll be pleased with Tahiri''s almost humorous return to the Jedi Order.

Vestara, prominent essentially since her introduction, faces the fact that her realization at the end of the previous book may come sooner than later. She is truly heartbroken at having to leave Ben behind, but her path seems to be leading her toward the One Sith and the story covered in the "Legacy" comics. Luke also tells Ben that he will encounter Vestara again, and I am excited to see what happens between them.

Sith, Abeloth, the Ones, Killiks, all-out combat on Coruscant, and another insightful trip beyond shadows. "Apocalypse" delivers!
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K. Kitts
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Shades of the video game Mass Effect...(spoilers within)
Reviewed in the United States on February 23, 2013
Overall, the book was good. I have problems with how Vestara Khai was written (if Mara Jade could turn, why not Vestara?). "Ship" lasting through a hail of baradium missiles - unlikely. Yes, 9 years old Allana is a bit too wise and battle-hardened for her years. Yes,... See more
Overall, the book was good. I have problems with how Vestara Khai was written (if Mara Jade could turn, why not Vestara?). "Ship" lasting through a hail of baradium missiles - unlikely. Yes, 9 years old Allana is a bit too wise and battle-hardened for her years. Yes, Anji is still alive after charging Sith. Yes, there was a reference to the animated series (the shadow man), that I missed since I never watched the TV series. The drama was well-written, and changing scenes to increase the virtual nail-biting was well done. However, as much as I liked the book, it had some pretty bad points.

My main gripe was with Abeloth, and that''s been from the beginning. If Abeloth is some sort of Force-being, and she can see the future, she must also know that she can determine the future by NOT acting on it. In other words, if Palpatine can grow from some guy on Naboo to Emperor of the Galaxy, then why, if she needs to power up, does she go for Coruscant, to try to obliterate it, when there''s thousands of other worlds she could destroy with little resistance and power up massively prior to annihilating the Jedi and Coruscant? For being so old (25,000 years), she is written to not be very intelligent or wise as would befit her age. If she has been defeated before, then she should also know her weaknesses, and move more slowly. Going to planets on the periphery and destroying those populations would require more time for the Jedi and the government to react, thus giving her more time to build up her power. Hell, she could have taken over one person on hundreds of worlds, then annihilated the planets with magma all at once, and super-powered-up. She was written as being stupid, and that speaks badly for the writer.

Furthermore, the Mass Effect comment comes in when you''ve written all the possible scenarios that you think you can come up with, and you need something else. Something world-shattering, something beyond society and politics, something...alien. Let''s see...ancient? Check. Comes around every so often to destroy civilization and let a new one emerge? Check. Virtually unstoppable? Check. Small group has only way of stopping alien menace? Check. See where this is going? Can you say "Reapers"?

Okay, let me give you an idea for free. "Emperor of the Galaxy". "A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...". "Halfway across the galaxy". See what these have in common? GALAXY. Or, rather, galaxIES. Plural. There''s more than one galaxy in this universe, isn''t there? Isn''t that where the Yuushan Vong came from? Aren''t there other people in other galaxies?

Let me be blunt: TRANS-GALACTIC HYPERDRIVE. Open up a whole new perspective on the Star Wars Universe. A whole new galaxy, with lots of characters. And different Force-users. Or a complete lack of them. Perhaps a single alien species (on par with humans) dominates the other galaxy. Come on, use your brains here, writers. You have a UNIVERSE to play with. Don''t think so small. The power to move entire solar systems with Centerpoint Station is ***nothing*** compared to the power of the Force. I can imagine channeling the entire Force-energy of a galaxy into a form used to annihilate another galaxy. What can YOU come up with?

Abeloth, the Reapers, and other such plot devices are the last refuge of writers who couldn''t think of something better. Zonama Sekot (sp?) as an intelligent planet was a good idea, but a planet as an enemy wouldn''t be very good - just grab a ship with a supralaser and wipe it out, story ends. Come to think of it, Abeloth could have been dealt with like that too...I can see the Empire stashing a few of those away for protection, especially given that mining facility turned research facility. Hell, watching the Alliance government''s reaction to the Empire wiping out its own planets in order to destroy Abeloth would have been an even more dramatic bit (Empire: "Abeloth is a cancer, and the only way to cure the galaxy is to cut it out.").

What I''m saying is that the writers need to expand their thinking. It IS the Expanded Universe...EXPAND it. You have hundreds of galaxies to choose from, and science doesn''t sit on its ass, you know. And the Yuushan Vong are still running amok in their own galaxy - this galaxy might have to have a GALACTIC-SCALE WAR with them some day. Imagine how that book series would run. What technology would have to be invented? Would the Alliance and Empire have to create a fleet of Death Stars and wipe out every planet in the Yuushan Vong galaxy? Or could a peace be formed?

I''m giving you millions of potential ideas, people. USE THEM. And please, PLEASE, do NOT let JJ Abrams dictate changes to canon. Stop him before its too late. Do NOT let him destroy Star Wars canon like he did Star Trek. Otherwise, everything we love will be destroyed (in my case, destroyed AGAIN). Stop that madness NOW.
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S. Cowen
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Good,but could have been better
Reviewed in the United States on April 14, 2013
The pros would be plenty of interesting characters. Lots of action and an interesting main villain. The book had some interesting twist and turns that will have some interesting elements for future books to go into further. The cons of the book . As I see them.... See more
The pros would be plenty of interesting characters. Lots of action and an interesting main villain. The book had some interesting twist and turns that will have some interesting elements for future books to go into further.

The cons of the book . As I see them. First there were some parts that were hard to swallow to me. Allana was beyond hard to swallow to me as she is like a little wonder woman. I felt she had abilities and intelligence far beyond reason. Also hated how the lost tribe is now like the three stooges of the dark side. They get their butts kicked all over the book and are not believable as a powerful enemies any more. The explanation of abeloth was interesting interesting,but should have been thought out more . This book series went on way to long even though I liked it they could have cut this one down a bit. I like many of the characters introduced in this series,but I would have liked more time given to some of the older characters in past books like Londo or Talon karrde.

In all a good read if some parts were hard to swallow in my opinion. I liked the way the book was written. I hope they cut back on the long drawn out wars and go for b some smaller stories .
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Dory Cordell Robinson
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Completion
Reviewed in the United States on March 12, 2020
There is nothing I dislike concerning Star Wars. I was a little kid when I first saw the Star Wars Cinematic Debut, A New Hope. Me and my mom waited 3 1/2 to 4 Hours in line at the lakeside shopping center cinema mall (being that the theatre no longer exists due to the... See more
There is nothing I dislike concerning Star Wars. I was a little kid when I first saw the Star Wars Cinematic Debut, A New Hope. Me and my mom waited 3 1/2 to 4 Hours in line at the lakeside shopping center cinema mall (being that the theatre no longer exists due to the re-renovating of the shopping mall complex. I can recall the line was like wrapped around the mall heading down the block of Severn ave, towards veterans; the most important thing at that time period was that America and Civil Social Society was free - people were free at that time, unlike todays paranoia and social phobic, there was no failed war on drugs, no prejudice or segregational externalized viewpoint subjecting our fellow individual. Most importantly people smiled and treated strangers with kindness and respect. Which of course at that current moment I was the only articulate black individual in the entire line.
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Top reviews from other countries

Cylon SaysTop Contributor: Star Wars
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Last of the EU
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 17, 2020
They probably didn''t know it at the time but Apocalypse was chronologically the last major EU novel (Mercy Kill being more of an add-on). As such, it effectively has the tough task of wrapping up a 100+ book series. So does it deliver? On the action front, yes. Hell, yes....See more
They probably didn''t know it at the time but Apocalypse was chronologically the last major EU novel (Mercy Kill being more of an add-on). As such, it effectively has the tough task of wrapping up a 100+ book series. So does it deliver? On the action front, yes. Hell, yes. It pretty much doesn''t let up for 500-odd compelling pages so there''s little complaint there. For the actual experience of reading it, the novel pushes for five stars. And then the ending draws near and you realise that it''s not going to have a proper ending. As with every series since the New Jedi Order, this series has had one eye on the future and this is no exception: it doesn''t wrap anything up, it just sets up the next series... a series that we now know isn''t going to happen. After nine books, you would hope for some sort of closure. After 100+ books and of course, the movies, those of us who have followed the EU can feel justified in demanding some sort of closure. Unless you''re willing to skip ahead a hundred years to the (somewhat detached) Legacy graphic novels, you''re not going to get it. Instead, you get a bleak prophecy of endless war between the Jedi and the Sith - no happy ending after all this but unending toil and misery - and that''s a bitter pill to swallow. This isn''t the fault of Apocalypse. The EU needed to grow beyond the consequence-free books of the nineties but in the effort to "grow up", the EU lost the purity of good versus evil and got mired in a load of balls about "balance". The problems with Apocalypse are a symptom of this over-ambition. Individual gripes I have include the reveal of Abeloth''s origins. This is tied closely to the Mortis storyline in the canon-trampling Clone Wars TV series; a series which pretty much forgot the war and went off on tangents with questionable merit. The Mortis episodes saw Anakin and friends visit a clumsy manifestation of this "balance" mumbo jumbo where the Father (Balance) presides over the Son (Darkness) and the Daughter (Light). If you liked those episodes, you''ll be fine with this but for others it''s a clumsy attempt at the metaphysical that has no place in Star Wars. Also, there is yet another band of undiscovered Sith. The Lost Tribe fizzles out disappointing to be replaced by yet another band waiting in the wings. At least Abeloth was a different sort of enemy. On it''s own merits, the book succeeds but the more importance you put in its conclusion - or lack thereof - the less satisfying it becomes.
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K. G. A. AlaviTop Contributor: Star Wars
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
This book is a fast paced monster action feast!!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 16, 2014
I really enjoyed this book. It is very very fast passed. With a battle going on in every chapter. I think there is more action going on in this book then the other 8 books of the series put together. Unlike another reviewer, I love the continuity in Star Wars, the fact the...See more
I really enjoyed this book. It is very very fast passed. With a battle going on in every chapter. I think there is more action going on in this book then the other 8 books of the series put together. Unlike another reviewer, I love the continuity in Star Wars, the fact the main stream book refer to things in the clone wars TV series as well as other book and in some cases even comics. The story. A month has passed since the last book. The Jedi have made their plans to infiltrate and liberate Coruscant from Lost Tribe of the Sith. Once everyone is in place the action does not stop. However can even the Jedi, the GA marines, and the Empire defeat the Lost Tribe numbering in the thousands and Aboloth? Aboloth''s origin and purpose are explained. Tying to an arc from Clone wars season 3. We also finally get the answer as to what exactly Jason Solo saw that he was will to become Darth Caedus. The Dark man being hinted at since the last since the previous series (legacy of the force) finally makes his appearance. Then many questions are left unanswered for the next series. The sign of a good book if you are hungry for more as soon as it finishes despite being 445 pages. The only thing I did not like was that authors seem to forget high level Jedi masters like Luke who have passed through the Dark side are more than capable of using force-lightning (their projection of it usually is green, but just as deadly) as well as the Sith they are also capable of blocking it the way Yoda did and Luke has in the pasted. They do not just use force projections to push people back. Also all the powers and new force abilities Luke added to his repertoire were not used again. Maybe they are saving that for next time. All in all a great ending to the series, and start of something new.
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Ian Tapley
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Almost good enough to redeem the series as a whole. Almost.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 10, 2014
THE STORY: (43 ABY) The ninth and final book of the ''Fate of the Jedi'' series. The Sith have seized control of Coruscant and the dark entity Abeloth has seized control of the Sith. The Jedi, led by Luke Skywalker, launch an all-out assault against their ancient enemies in...See more
THE STORY: (43 ABY) The ninth and final book of the ''Fate of the Jedi'' series. The Sith have seized control of Coruscant and the dark entity Abeloth has seized control of the Sith. The Jedi, led by Luke Skywalker, launch an all-out assault against their ancient enemies in an attempt to destroy them once and for all. Meanwhile, they must also investigate Abeloth''s origins in an attempt to find a way to destroy her before she can ascend to godhood as the Bringer of Chaos. WHAT''S GOOD: This book is orders of magnitude better than most of this series, being the broad action-packed epic that a Star Wars novel should be. It opens strongly, with the Jedi assault on the Sith being one of those moments that you just think ''Cool!'', like you did the first time you saw a lightsaber duel on screen. The story then broadens into a wider conflict before coming back together in the form of the Jedi''s multi-pronged attack against Abeloth. I enjoyed the links to ''The Clone Wars'' TV series (the Mortis episodes were among my favourite) and enjoyed the fact that Luke and Ben are faced with a similar choice to Anakin in regard to the Balance of the Force. Also fans of the EU who have read the ''Legacy'' comics will probably be intrigued by the actions of a certain tattooed Sith who makes a mysterious appearance here. We also get some resolution to plotlines that have been dangling since ''Legacy of the Force'' (or even earlier); in particular Tahiri''s fate, Jaina and Jag''s relationship and just what it was that pushed Jacen Solo to the dark side. WHAT''S BAD: Overall, ''Fate of the Jedi'' has been repetitive and uneventful. Sure, there have been some great moments, but not enough to justify a nine book series and ''Apocalypse'' suffers from being the product of that over-extension of plotlines. Abeloth''s repeated defeats and escapes have made those events in this book seem like more of the same, rather than the endgame of the conflict. Also her origins in relation to the Ones seems like a last minute idea to cover the fact that the author''s didn''t know what to make of Abeloth once they came up with her. Similarly, the Lost Tribe lose a lot of their threat and potency as this book goes on. We''re to believe that these are different from your average dark siders because they''re Sith, but not one of them comes close to being as menacing as the likes of Darth Maul, let alone the great Darth Vader. Also, as with the ''Legacy of the Force'' series, the ending wraps up a bit too quickly, being sure to leave enough space for a potential continuance. I would rather have seen a bit more of a wind-down, with more exposition about the aftermath of the conflict (like does poor old Raynar Thul ever catch a break!). OVERALL: A really enjoyable Star Wars book but weighed down by the inadequacies of the series as a whole.
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Joanne
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Best of the series: Fate of The Jedi
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 9, 2014
Book 9 is the final story of the `Fate of The Jedi'' series. (Review has no spoilers) Review Summary: What a great book to finish on - it''s one of the best of the series and creates a satisfying conclusion. This is an action packed book that avoids the slow political...See more
Book 9 is the final story of the `Fate of The Jedi'' series. (Review has no spoilers) Review Summary: What a great book to finish on - it''s one of the best of the series and creates a satisfying conclusion. This is an action packed book that avoids the slow political manoeuvrings and court rooms of the previous releases and focuses on the destruction of Abeloth. Standing in the way of that goal, is The Lost Tribe of Sith and unearthing how to rid the Galaxy of Abeloth. On two fronts Troy Denning is superb: -First he links this book into the greater context of the Expanded Universe (more revealed below). -Secondly the conclusions of the various subplots, are written in such a way to satisfy the reader''s appetite but also leaving enough room for further spin offs. To expand on the first point; you not only learn what Abeloth is and how to destroy her, Denning also manages to link Abeloth''s story to an adventure Anakin Skywalker and Obo Wan Kenobi embarked on some 60 years previously. That adventure is actually screened in an episode of The Clone Wars Animated series (season 3, episodes 15-17), which I found was narratively very clever. Denning also pens a cameo appearance of a member of the One Sith towards the end of the book. (The One Sith are an important group of Sith that make their first appearance in the book series Legacy Of The Force set 2-3 years before and who are the main antagonists in the Legacy Graphic Novels with Cade Skywalker set 80 years after the Fate of the Jedi) When I realised who it was I found this brief cameo mind blowing as it explains a lot of what happens in the Universe afterwards. (I can''t say anymore without spoiling this book, or the Legacy series, but if you want more information feel free to message me). Negatives: Abeloth''s powers seem slightly dumbed down in this book compared to the rest of the series, but the last Chapter helps rectify this very slightly. If you haven''t read any of the Fate of the Jedi series, I fully recommend them. Some of the books in the middle of the series drag at points (especially the court room and mind walker scenes) but it''s a great series and by the time you finish this one you''ll wish it didn''t end. 5 stars out of 5
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Mark Kaye
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Awesome Conclusion, Awesome Storey
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 5, 2014
Where to begin. This review is more about all nine books rather than just this final book. The Story had a slow start however that was to be expected as it was a 9 book story. Book 1 2 and 3 were an up hill climb setting in place the story and all the Characters. By the...See more
Where to begin. This review is more about all nine books rather than just this final book. The Story had a slow start however that was to be expected as it was a 9 book story. Book 1 2 and 3 were an up hill climb setting in place the story and all the Characters. By the time book 4 started things were in motion and the story had got going and was very gripping. One of the best things I liked about this story was how many other stories it touched. Tales of the Jedi, There was The Lost Tribe of the Sith, The Clone Wars Season 3, Courtship of Princess Leia, Children of the Jedi, Darksaber, Planet of Twilight, The New Jedi Order series, The Dark Nest Trilogy, and finally The Legacy of the Force series. I felt the story handled the Sith really well and also reminded us of The Sith History, it showed us how a Sith society might work and how ultimately they a flawed by their own ego. I liked Vestara and I hope the way is open to deal with her character more in the future. Abeloth was a truly terrifying creature and the ending was amazing, how they deal with her is great and the outcome is... well I can''t say because of ''Spoilers Sweetie'', but I liked it. It was good to go to the Astral planes again, Star Wars hasn''t gone there since the Jedi Academy Trilogy, it was good because it wasn''t just a story about some tangible Evil fighting the Good. It put into play an Evil that was beyond the Norm. Overall an excellent storey that had a few bumps on the way. I just hope that we don''t have to read a Trilogy or a Mega series to read about our favourite Characters and I also hope that the new characters are in future book and have a story soon, and we don''t have to wait years and years to find out what happened to them like we did with Callista. 5 stars for this story and 5 stars for this book.
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