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"That's Appenza Peak. It's the most famous mountain on Alderaan."
"It's beautiful."
"And treacherous. That mountain is the one that took my lungs and heart."
―Breha Organa and Padmé Amidala[src]

Appenza Peak was the most famous snowcapped mountain on the planet Alderaan, visible from the capital Aldera. Although it was not Alderaan's highest mountain, its silhouette featured on the flag of the capital region. Many Alderaanian fairy tales began with a spirit flying away from its home on the mountain to choose an adventurer, and religious pilgrims claimed it was possible to commune with the Force at its summit. The climb to the mountain's summit was considered relatively easy, and hundreds made the trek every year.

It was traditional for the heir to the Alderaanian monarchy to climb the mountain solo for their Challenge of the Body. During her Challenge, then-Princess Breha Organa was severely injured in a fall while descending the peak, only surviving due to the quick actions of the royal guards supervising from a distance. As Queen, Breha's adopted daughter Leia asked her mother to accompany her for her Challenge of the Body. Along with the rest of the planet, Appenza Peak was destroyed by the first Death Star in 0 BBY.

Description[]

Appenza Peak was a snowcapped mountain[3] located in the capital region of the Core Worlds planet Alderaan. It was visible from the capital city of Aldera. The climb to its summit was considered a relatively easy one, such that hundreds made the trek every year.[2]

Although not the tallest mountain on Alderaan, Appenza Peak held immense cultural significance to the Alderaanians. Its silhouette featured on the flag of the capital region, and many Alderaanian fairy tales began with a spirit flying away from its home on the mountain to choose an adventurer. Religious pilgrims claimed that it was possible to commune with the Force on Appenza Peak's summit. As part of the three challenges the heir to the Alderaanian monarchy was required to undergo to prove themselves worthy, it became traditional for heirs to climb Appenza Peak for their Challenge of the Body, which they could do either solo or taking along one companion.[2]

History[]

Alderaan, a Core Worlds planet, came to be ruled by a hereditary monarchy under the House of Organa from the capital city of Aldera, which was constructed near Appenza Peak in the same planetary region and which enjoyed a magnificent view of the mountain. Heirs to the throne were required to prove their worth through three challenges, one each of the Heart, Mind, and Body. Appenza Peak became a crucial part of the Challenge of the Body, as a tradition developed that the heir climb it to fulfill the challenge. In the final decades of the Galactic Republic, Princess Breha Organa suffered a near-fatal fall while descending Appenza Peak during her Challenge of the Body, saved from death only by the swift actions of royal guards supervising from a distance. The injuries took Breha's lungs and heart, leaving her with cybernetic pulmonodes. Due to the stress inflicted on her body, after she became Queen, Breha and her consort Bail decided they would adopt a child instead of Breha bearing one herself.[2]

In 28 BBY,[4] Bail and Breha invited recently-appointed Naboo Senator Padmé Amidala for a state visit. Amidala, who had formerly been the elected Queen of Naboo, bonded with Breha. During a breakfast at the Royal Palace, Breha pointed out Appenza Peak. Amidala remarked on the mountain's beauty, and Breha stated that it was also treacherous, noting the injuries she had received climbing it.[3]

In 19 BBY,[5] the Organas adopted Amidala's newborn daughter Leia after her mother's death and the rise of the Galactic Empire from the ashes of the Republic.[6] When Leia came of age at sixteen and underwent her Day of Demand, she swore to undertake the Challenges of the Body, Heart, and Mind, promising to undergo pathfinding training to prepare herself to climb Appenza Peak solo. The following period saw Leia discover that her parents were involved in plotting a rebellion against the Empire and get involved herself, although she lost her first love, fellow Alderaanian Kier Domadi, whom she had met in her pathfinding class. When it came time for Leia to carry out her Challenge of the Body, she invited her mother to join her as her one companion.[2]

In 0 BBY,[1] the Empire discovered the Organas were aligned with the Alliance to Restore the Republic. Leia, captured[7] after fleeing the Battle of Scarif with the Death Star plans,[8] was brought on board the Death Star, an enormous battle station with a planet-killing superlaser, and was forced to watch as Alderaan was destroyed. The Death Star was shortly destroyed itself in a heroic effort by the Rebellion. At the Royal Award Ceremony to honour the heroes who had made it possible,[7] Leia thought about what she had lost, remembering climbing Appenza Peak before turning her attention to the present and the continued war.[9]

Behind the scenes[]

Appenza Peak first appeared in the 2017 novel Leia, Princess of Alderaan, written by Claudia Gray.[2] It was first pictured in the novel's manga adaptation, Leia Organa: Ordeal of the Princess, which was written and illustrated by Haruichi.[10]

Appearances[]

Sources[]

Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates the destruction of Alderaan as being set in 0 BBY. Since Appenza Peak was on Alderaan, it can be deduced that it was destroyed at that time.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Leia, Princess of Alderaan
  3. 3.0 3.1 Queen's Shadow
  4. Queen's Shadow is set four years after the events of Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace, which Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates to 32 BBY. As such, the events of Queen's Shadow, including Padmé Amidala's visit to Alderaan, must occur in 28 BBY.
  5. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
  6. Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
  7. 7.0 7.1 Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  8. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  9. Queen's Peril
  10. Leia Organa: Ordeal of the Princess
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