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"Battle stations! Fire on my signal!"
―Captain Vanicus[src]

The First Battle of Empress Teta, also known as the Battle of Koros Major, was one of the first direct major Republic military offensives against the Krath during the Great Sith War. The last of the seven worlds of the Empress Teta system to resist the military coup instigated by Aleema and Satal Keto, Koros Major held off the aggressive actions of the Krath long enough for a combined Republic and Jedi task force to come to its aid. Nevertheless, even with the intervention of Jedi and Republic forces, the Krath were able to drive the joint task force from the system, and lay siege to Koros Major. With the Republic and Jedi forced to retreat, Koros Major soon fell to the combined strength of the Krath armies.

The First Battle of Empress Teta is often seen as one of several events which precipitated the Krath Holy Crusade, which was a part of the larger war against the rise of the Sith.

Background

"Koros Major is the last planet in the system to resist our will, Aleema. This is a test of our power—if the proud soldiers of Koros Major can be confounded by Sith magic, certainly we can take on the Jedi themselves!"
―Satal Keto, to his cousin Aleema[src]

Returning from their voyage to the planet of Onderon, and in possession of newly learned Sith knowledge, the cousins Aleema and Satal Keto returned their homeworld intent on promoting themselves and their dark side order, the Krath, to a seat of power. Mobilizing the military forces of the Empress Teta system, the Ketos led a violent coup which placed the Krath firmly in control of the established government infrastructure. Nonetheless, the seven worlds of Empress Teta refused to allow an illegal coup to take place, and thus rised up in rebellion against their newly established leaders. From their hidden bases, the seven worlds launched an organized resistance against the Krath leadership—this, however, gave the Keto cousins an excuse with which to crush the naysayers and instill fear of their rule. Using their new Sith powers, Aleema and Satal were able to lead the Krath into putting down the revolts on six of the seven worlds under their control. The only planet which was able to mount a successful long-term defense was the capital world of the Teta Sector, Koros Major. Before long, word of the planets fight against the Krath soon made its way across the galaxy and to the seats of both the Republic government and Jedi leadership.[4]

When word of Koros Major's plight against the Krath made its way to Jedi Master Arca Jeth, the aged Master was concerned. The illegal coup, he believed, deserved a response, but what caused him and other Jedi Masters to worry were the reports which claimed Sith participation in the coup. Believing that the shadow of the Sith had again returned, Master Jeth traveled to Onderon, where the Jedi Knights Ulic Qel-Droma, Nomi Sunrider, and several others were helping with peaceful transition of governing power. Following his arrival on the planet, Master Jeth gave a quick briefing to the gathered Jedi about the coup which had transpired in the Empress Teta system. The Knights, like the Masters, were concerned when they learned about the Krath and their knowledge of Sith magic. After the conclusion of his briefing, Master Jeth advised the Jedi of their individual assignments, including both Qel-Droma and Sunrider, whom Jeth and the other masters had decided would led the relief effort to Koros Major.[4]

Under the Jedi's leadership, a joint Republic-Jedi task force was assembled and dispatched in an attempt to halt the Krath advance.[4]

The battle

"Shields up! The Chaos ships are diving straight at us!"
―Captain Vanicus[src]

With the Ulic Qel-Droma and Fleet Captain Vanicus directing the fleet, Nomi Sunrider had been directed to use her battle meditation in an attempt to sway the battle's tide against the Krath forces. However, when the joint Republic-Jedi fleet emerged from hyperspace, the fleet commanders found that its destination, Koros Major, was again under attack by a large Krath invasion fleet—to those observing the battle before them, it appeared that the Battle of Koros Major had already been decided.[4]

Reliance

Republic fleet exits hyperspace.

Wanting to give the Krath a chance to surrender, Qel-Droma advised Vanicus to issue a cease-fire order to the invading Krath forces. However, as Ulic had known would happen, the Krath chose to ignore Vanicus's order, instead choosing to continue their attack on Koros Major. Believing that the only way to now stop the Krath's attack was the join the fight, Qel-Droma ordered the Republic fleet into attack positions. During this time, Satal asked his cousin Aleema to make use her Sith powers to generate large Force Illusions in the shape of space grazers, lifeforms which had, at that time, been extinct for thousands of years. Realizing what her cousin had planned, Aleema used influenced the illusions into seemingly attacking the enemy task force, thus successfully scattering the joint fleet. Not understanding what was happening, Qel-Droma and many of the Republic officers expressed disbelief at the Space grazers, who were once believed to have fed themselves on starships; Sunrider, however, was able to perceive the grazers through the Force, and determine that they were actually Sith illusions. Realizing that the grazers presented no danger to the Republic-Jedi fleet, Sunrider ordered the ships under her command to keep pressing its attack against the Krath fleet.[4]

Understanding that they had underestimated the Jedi, whom they had expected to run in fear from the space grazers, Satal and Aleema devised a new, and seemingly much more effective, plan. Still relying Aleema's Sith magic, Satal ordered an enormous number of Krath Chaos fighters to launch from his command ship and target the individual ships of the Republic-Jedi fleet. In an attempt to cause further confusion among their enemies, Aleema used her Sith magic to create more illusions, but instead of enormous grazers, she created illusions of Chaos fighters. The Republic fleet prepared to open fire on the advancing enemy fighters, but Sunrider sensed through the Force that it was yet another Sith trick. Using her strong connection with the Force, Sunrider used her powers to reach out to Aleema's mind, and was able to take control of it thus forced her to lose control over the illusions. Nevertheless, even with the false Chaos fighters gone from their screens, the Republic fleet soon realized that there were still many more real fighters heading on an intercept course with them. Unable to raise their particle shields in time, the joint Republic-Jedi fleet suffered heavy casualties from the Chaos fighters as they crashed into the Republic ships.[4]

Qel-Droma, stationed aboard the Republic command ship Reliance, had been severely wounded by flying shrapnel when an enemy Chaos fighter had crashed through the bridge of the Reliance. Unaware that the shrapnel had been imbued with Sith magic, Sunrider was able to use the Force to bind her fellow Jedi's wounds. Realizing that the joint fleet was now operating at an ineffective fighting capacity, Captain Vanicus ordered the Republic-Jedi fleet to retreat from the Empress Teta system and jump into hyperspace.[4]

Aftermath

"The Jedi prophecies predict a great conflict with the Dark side…"
―Shoaneb Culu during the Conclave of Deneba[src]

In response to the massive losses experienced by both the Republic and Jedi at the battle over Koros Major, the Jedi leadership ordered a gathering of Jedi to assemble on the planet Deneba, where a conclave was to be held in order to discuss the increasing hostilities resulting from Krath aggression.[4]

Appearances

Sources

Notes and references

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