- "Sir, we've got multiple marks launching from the cruiser—Sir they're droid fighters! Tri-fighters, vultures, the whole Sep menagerie."
- ―An Imperial technician and Moff Tarkin
In 14 BBY, Berch Teller's rebel cell launched an attack against the Galactic Empire's Sentinel Base. Using communications equipment supplied by Vice Admiral Dodd Rancit, the rebels sent a fake holotransmission claiming that Rampart Stationwas under attack. Tarkin detected that the message was a fraud and sent his Venator-class Star Destroyer, Electrum on a microjump to the edge of the system. Shortly after, a modified Providence-class dreadnought entered the system. Tarkin then deployed the Venator and ordered it to ambush the intruders. The Providence cruiser retreated to hyperspace shorty afterward.
By 14 BBY, Moff Wilhuff Tarkin was in charge of the secret Death Star battle station project. At the time, the project involved several different locations including Geonosis, Desolation Station, and Sentinel Base. Sentinel Base was an outpost used to relay supplies along a supply route that ended at Geonosis. Tarkin's appointment came at the expense of Vice Admiral Dodd Rancit, who was reassigned as Director of the Naval Intelligence Agency, a branch of Imperial Intelligence. Resenting Tarkin's position, Rancit conspired with the former Republic Intelligence officer Berch Teller, another enemy of Tarkin who hated the Moff for his role in the Antar Atrocity, which saw the mass murder of many Gotal and Koorivar civilians on Antar 4 including loyalists. Teller became the leader of a group of dissidents who opposed the Empire.
Using his position and connections, Rancit supplied the dissidents with proscribed armaments, communications equipment, and confiscated Separatist war materiel including a Providence-class dreadnought, Vulture droids, and droid tri-fighters. The modified Separatist warship was assembled by the Tenloss Syndicate and members of the Crymorah syndicate at shipyards in the Bajic sector. Teller also had a network of helpers in the form of workers, salvagers, and scientists who supplied materials and intelligence to his cell.
While trying an Imperial officer's uniform, Moff Tarkin received word of a priority dispatch from Rampart Station, claiming that the station was under attack. Posing as Lieutenant Thon, Teller's rebels had created a fake holotransmission to lure Sentinel Station's garrison away from the base. While examining the footage, Tarkin suspected that the transmission was a fake but kept the matter to himself. After checking the base's inventory, Tarkin ordered the Venator-class Star Destroyer Electrum to do a microjump to the Rimward edge of Sentinel Base's system. He ordered Captain Burque to remain there until further orders.
Shortly later, Teller's warship exited hyperspace and disgorged several droid starfighters. Tarkin ordered Commander Cassel to sound general quarters, boost power to the base's deflector shields, and to initiate counter-measures. Under Tarkin's orders, Sentinel Base's artillery bombarded the unidentified warship and its droid starfighters. Due to the strident defense, the intruders began to retreat. After the Electrum reverted to realspace, Tarkin instructed Captain Burque to deploy his starfighters to harry the enemy droid starfighters and to incapacitate the carrier.
Amidst the battle, Tarkin was contacted by Rampart Station's Commander Jae, who informed him that their base's HoloNet relay had been down. Despite the Electrum's efforts, the enemy carrier managed to escape into hyperspace. The remaining droid starfighters were wiped out by Imperial TIE fighters. Tarkin instructed Commander Cassel to dispatch a forensic team to examine the enemy droid starfighters. While chatting with a specialist, Tarkin revealed that he knew that the holotransmission from Rampart Station was a counterfeit due to the interval noise in the replay. They deduced that someone had managed to introduce a false real-time feed into the local HoloNet relay.
Following the failed attack on Sentinel Base, Moff Tarkin attended a meeting of the Ruling Council on Coruscant. He and Darth Vader were dispatched by Emperor Palpatine to investigate a communications cache on Murkhana. However, the communications cache was a ruse set up by Vice Admiral Rancit to enable Teller and his cell to steal Tarkin's personal starship Carrion Spike, which was equipped with an advanced hyperdrive and prototype stealth technology. Teller planned to use the Carrion Spike to attack several Imperial facilities along the Perlemian Trade Route as part of his campaign against the Empire.
Behind the scenesEdit
The attack on Sentinel Base serves as the exposition of James Luceno's 2014 novel Tarkin, the second in a line of new Canon adult novels published by Del Rey. The battle is told from the point of view of the titular character Tarkin.
- Tarkin (First appearance)