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"The leader and founder of the Aurodium Sword is a grizzled vet known as 'Muzzle.' Informants and intel confirm that he was part of the Alpha batch of ARCs—Alpha-66 to be exact"
―An excerpt from an Imperial Security Bureau report on the Aurodium Sword[src]

Alpha-66, was an Alpha-class Advanced Recon Commando in the Grand Army of the Republic who fought in the Clone Wars and took the name Muzzle during the closing stages of the war. After the end of the Clone Wars and the establishment of the Galactic Empire, Muzzle went on to organize his own mercenary group, the Aurodium Sword, offering his services as a bodyguard and a gun-for-hire to employers criminal and Imperial alike. However, Muzzle's treatment of Wookiees and other aliens as equal beings found him at odds with Imperial pro-Human politics.

Biography[edit | edit source]

"After the Clone Wars, a number of ARC-class clones deserted or were offered retirement. Many joined the Academy as instructors, but a few struck out on their own."
―An excerpt from an Imperial Security Bureau report on the Aurodium Sword[src]

Clone trooper Alpha-66[2] was one of the numerous clones of the bounty hunter Jango Fett created on the planet Kamino to serve in the Grand Army of the Republic. Although most of Fett's clones were genetically altered to be more obedient to their Jedi commanders,[1] Alpha-66 was one of the Alpha-class Advanced Recon Commandos,[2] an elite group of one hundred clones produced from Fett's unaltered genome and trained by Fett himself. As a result, Muzzle inherited all of Fett's combat skills, but also his loner personality streak.[3] Alpha-66 fought in the Clone Wars between the Galactic Republic and the Confederacy of Independent Systems, adopting the name "Muzzle" during the final stages of the conflict.[4]

Snoova was a member of the Aurodium Sword.

After the end of the war and the reformation of the Republic into the Galactic Empire, all surviving ARCs were offered retirement. Some of them agreed and trained their successors, the stormtroopers, at the Imperial Academy; others decided to follow in their progenitor's footsteps and operate on their own. Muzzle chose the latter option, founding the Aurodium Sword mercenary group[2]—named after the aurodium mineral[5]—offering protection to captains of industry and heads of state. The Aurodium Sword was staffed mainly by Humans, Ubese, and fierce Wookiee warriors such as the bounty hunter Snoova. Muzzle's organization was known to take jobs for clients both criminal and Imperial, such as the Sienar family.[2]

On one occasion, Muzzle, Snoova, and another Wookiee defended a Sullustan executive against an industrial assassin droid. Muzzle and the Aurodium Sword were still active shortly after the Battle of Yavin. As part of its program of tracking rogue Fett clones, the Rogue Cell of the Imperial Security Bureau kept a close eye on Muzzle and his organization, considering their loyalty to the Empire to be undecided. The Imperial agents, however, were concerned with Muzzle's treatment of Wookiees[2] and other species[4] as equal beings, which clashed with the Empire's humanocentristic views.[2]

Personality and traits[edit | edit source]

"Aurodium sword has taken jobs for clients both Imperial (the Sienar family), and criminal, so the organization's loyalty to the Empire cannot be gauged at this time. However, Muzzle's employment and treatment of Wookiees as actual free beings is troublesome."
―An excerpt from an Imperial Security Bureau report on the Aurodium Sword[src]

A grizzled Clone Wars veteran,[2] recognized for his service in the Republic army even by Imperial military personnel,[4] Muzzle inherited Jango Fett's sense of adventure and contempt to any form of authority.[5] By the time of the Galactic Civil War, Muzzle was considered atypically long-lived for a clone.[6] Although the Empire treated other species, especially Wookiees, as inferior to Humans, Muzzle considered them equal in every sense, causing some concern for the Imperial Security Bureau with such views,[2] a fact that he was aware of.[4] At some point in his life, he received a prominent X-shaped scar across his forehead. Muzzle wore a combined armor set—while the upper half was ARC trooper armor, complete with a pauldron; the lower half came from the Naboo Palace Guard uniform.[2] Such a combination offered him both good protection and freedom of movement, as Muzzle's experience had taught him that sometimes it was better to run as fast as possible. While choosing the name for his organization, Muzzle wanted it to project an aura of class, intelligence, and purity, and he eventually settled upon the valuable aurodium.[5]

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

"It struck a chord with me, though, and I thought, "Boy, who wouldn't want to have a trio of huge Wookiees backing him up?" I remember when I was a kid, thinking that Chewbacca was the strongest alien in the galaxy. How awesome would it be to team up a grizzled super-soldier with a bunch of the biggest, meanest guard dogs you've ever seen!??"
―Ryan Kaufman[src]

The character of Alpha-66 was conceived by Ryan Kaufman for his and Abel G. Peña's article Underworld: A Galaxy of Scum and Villainy, which was published in Star Wars Insider 89 in August of 2006. Joe Corroney provided the artwork depicting Muzzle for the article. Kaufman came up with the concept of a clone trooper veteran backed by Wookiee warriors when he witnessed his five-year-old son, Max, playing with action figures of a clone trooper commander and three Wookiees. As Kaufman had an unofficial agreement with Karen Traviss, the author of the Republic commando novel series, which prevented him from using Null-class Advanced Recon Commandos and clone commandos, he decided to make his character an Alpha-class ARC, a concept he had co-developed with Haden Blackman and that he had wanted to explore for a long time. Kaufman was very pleased with Corroney's artistic interpretation of Muzzle. Muzzle's grim determination, graying temples, and the X-shaped scar reminded Kaufman of Detective John Hartigan from the Sin City: That Yellow Bastard comic book series by Frank Miller.[5]

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