- "Somehow, when I turned inside myself to escape, I found something there—power. The power not to die. The power to heal myself. And once I'd succeeded—the power to take my freedom—and my revenge."
Chantique was a female Zeltron slave who lived during the Mandalorian Wars and eventually rose to become the leader of the Crucible, a massive slaving organization. Born Kessarah around 3990 BBY on the Core World of Osadia, she spent much of her childhood at the New Generation Academy, where her father, Antos Wyrick, attempted to genetically-engineer Force-sensitive infants on behalf of the Mandalorian warrior clans. Kessarah was one of the first test subjects conceived, but was considered a mentally-unstable failure by Wyrick, particularly after the birth of Edessa, an Arkanian Offshoot test subject who proved to be the embodiment of Wyrick's vision. Kessarah was subsequently given to the Crucible as a slave in exchange for additional prospective Arkanian Offshoot parents.
As a slave, Kessarah was forced to combat other captives in the fight pits maintained by the Crucible. She proved victorious time and again, and around the age of fifteen, she was assigned by her masters to preside over the fights of younger slaves. As their Overseer, she brutally enforced the Crucible's will and threw captured younglings into deadly combat against one another. She earned the name "Chantique," which meant "destroyer" in the ancient language of the Crucible. Chantique was eventually challenged by one of the children she minded—the young Edessa, who was among the New Generation Academy younglings that had been captured by the Crucible not long after Chantique had been given to the organization. She was stabbed in the back and left to die by Edessa, by whom she was replaced as Overseer, while the Zeltron was returned to the slave pits and sold to a buyer in the Outer Rim Territories. During that time, Chantique discovered that she was indeed Force-sensitive, and used her new power to heal her wounds and murder her masters. She lived on the Rim for a time, but eventually made her way back to the Crucible to reclaim her old job as Overseer and exact revenge on Edessa.
To Chantique's dismay, Edessa had fled the Crucible and gone into hiding, but the Zeltron swore that she would one day kill her old enemy. Meanwhile, she went about reclaiming her lost status, eventually becoming the Magister Impressor of the Crucible, overseeing the induction of new "recruits" and the placement of those who progressed beyond the fight pits. Once a year after her assumption of that title, she executed one of the New Generation students on Osadia as an act of revenge against her father and Edessa. In 3963 BBY, Chantique learned that her enemy, now known as "Jarael," was working with former Jedi fugitive Zayne Carrick to free slaves that the Crucible had sold to the Franchise and Sungrazer cooperative. Shortly after, Carrick attempted to infiltrate and bring the organization down from within, but was instead discovered by Chantique and manipulated into believing that Jarael had been as sadistic a slave driver as she. Chantique later experienced a Force vision of Jarael's imminent return to Osadia without Carrick, and the Zeltron planned to finally confront her nemesis. During the duel, Chantique learned that Jarael was accompanied to the planet by Antos Wyrick, and left her to hunt him down and take his life. Wyrick instead attacked, stabbing her in the back and leaving her to die. Chantique survived and attempted to kill her father once more, but died when the double-bladed lightsaber he tried to defend himself with activated at both ends. The two blades impaled father and daughter, ending both lives.
A failed experiment
- "Look outside—to the Zeltron. Older than others. She is a wild one. Inattentive. Disruptive. No good to me at all. There is no sense prolonging the inevitable. Yes, it would be best for everyone, Golliard—you can have her."
- ―Antos Wyrick gives his daughter to the Crucible
Kessarah was a Zeltron girl conceived during the Old Sith Wars as part of the New Generation Project, a grand scheme to create an army of Force-sensitive supersoldiers loyal to the Mandalorian warriors and their leader, Mandalore the Ultimate. These "Mandalorian Knights" were the focus of a project led by Antos Wyrick, a Zeltron doctor and geneticist who had become obsessed with learning the secret behind Force-sensitivity. During the Great Sith War, Wyrick stole the robe of the legendary Arkanian Jedi Master Arca Jeth, and was determined to use the residual genetic traces he found to uncover the secrets of the Force. With sponsorship from the Mandalore, Wyrick and a number of researchers founded a colony on the Core World of Osadia, where they hoped to synthesize Force-sensitive children and train them at their institute on the planet, the New Generation Academy. The researchers' attempts to create clones with Jeth's genetic material were met with failure, which led them to formulate a process of modifying the genes of pre-conceived children in vitro. Wyrick himself contributed to one of the earliest attempts, and conceived the infant Kessarah with Sibyl, a fellow Zeltron researcher, around 3990 BBY. Wyrick believed his procedure would work, but upon the child's birth, he conceded that she was a failure, unbalanced both genetically and mentally and incapable of touching the Force.
A disappointment to her father, Kessarah lived in the New Generation Academy along with the children of other researchers that he had similarly deemed to be "failures." Two to three years after Kessarah's birth, Wyrick discovered the reason for his failures: the genetic model of Arca Jeth he had been operating by was incorrect—the Arkanian also had a Sephi heritage, and the Mandalorian doctor had been unwittingly placing those genes into his test subjects. With that knowledge in hand, he attempted his experiment once more, this time with two Arkanian Offshoots serving as parents. They produced a child named Edessa who was quick to pick up new talents in both martial arts and, Wyrick assumed, the Force. Edessa became Wyrick's pride and joy—her name literally translated to "triumph" in Arkanian—while Kessarah and the other students continued to be neglected. Kessarah's father replicated his success with Edessa a number of times and created more supposedly Force-sensitive children to become his pupils in the academy. Kessarah despised the children and became a schoolyard bully, which further disappointed her father as he saw her as a disruption to his experiment.
Wyrick's desire for more children eventually outgrew his resources, and he was forced to contact the Crucible—a massive slaver organization—in order to procure more Offshoot parents. After a number of deliveries, Wyrick was asked by Crucible Captain Dace Golliard for additional compensation for the Arkanians. Wyrick offered up his own daughter as payment, and Kessarah was taken by Golliard to join the numerous slaves being held by the Crucible at secret locations across the galaxy. The act earned Wyrick his daughter's hatred, and she vowed to some day make him pay for the betrayal. The Mandalorian scientist neglected to consult Kessarah's mother on the decision, and in the days following the girl's abduction, Sibyl committed suicide.
From slave to slaver
- "I won't tell you who's in the market for slaves who can't do anything. I would have been glad to die."
The Crucible was built around perpetual violence, and the slaves were forced into fight pits for contests of strength. The victors were sold off to high-paying bidders, such as dueling leagues, while the failures who survived were auctioned off to buyers who needed laborers for high-risk jobs, such as comet mining. As a Zeltron, Kessarah had a natural hypersensitivity to the emotions of others, and being surrounded by the pain and strife cultivated by the Crucible twisted her empathetic abilities so much that she became a sadist who enjoyed the tortured experiences of others. She ultimately fared well in the pits, surviving numerous fights and earning the notice of her minders. While still young, she was singled out for her potential and saddled with the responsibility of overseeing the fights between younger children. Among these younglings were the students from the New Generation Academy, who had been captured by Captain Golliard while Antos Wyrick was away from Osadia. Kessarah was particularly cruel to these new "recruits," as they were termed by the Crucible, and pitted them against one another in deadly combat. Her actions eventually earned her the name "Chantique," which meant "destroyer" in the ancient tongue of the Crucible. Her face and upper arms were tattooed with glyphs known as the Flames of the Crucible that represented her new moniker.
Chantique continued her brutal reign over the children she minded until the now-enslaved Edessa, who was among the children captured from Osadia, resolved to challenge her. The young Arkanian Offshoot waited until they were both away from the fight pits and drove a blade into Chantique's back. The Zeltron was left for dead while Edessa took her place as Overseer of the youth duels. Chantique lost all the status and prestige she had gained, and her crippling wound rendered her incapable of fighting. Thus, she was sold off with other invalid slaves to owners in the Outer Rim Territories about whom Chantique later refused to speak. They abused her so heavily that the young girl wished for death, but she instead found that she had an inner strength that had not yet been accessed. That strength was her as-of-yet undiscovered Force ability, into which she was able to tap and heal her wounds. Motivated by the discovery of her powers, Chantique killed all of her owners in a bid for freedom. In the years that followed, she became a fugitive on the Rim, and committed a number of additional murders as a teenager.
Return to the Crucible
- "But why would you come back here?"
"Because its different this time. I'm Magister Impressor. I oversee the capture of new recruits—the replacement of our successful trainees, and the disposal of our failures. No one will have that power over me, ever again."
- ―Zayne Carrick and Chantique
Although her time in the Outer Rim was difficult, Chantique survived and eventually chose to return to the Crucible. She blamed Edessa for her downfall and intended to reclaim her former position and exact revenge on the Arkanian Offshoot. Chantique eventually found her old masters and rejoined them, working to a position of power once again. Soon, however, she learned that Edessa was no longer with the Crucible; the young girl had been appalled by the organization's treatment of slaves, and so did what she could to protect the children she minded. The Offshoot was given the name "Jarael," meaning "protector" in the language of the Crucible, and attempted to reduce the hardships that the slaves were forced to endure. Jarael eventually realized that she could do little to stop the Crucible, and so fled the organization and went into hiding. Chantique had been deprived of her revenge, but nevertheless found other ways to express her wrath.
She eventually reached a pinnacle of power in the Crucible when she became the Magister Impressor. Chantique had command over the organization's press gangs, as well as the authority to oversee the capture of new recruits, the placement of successful pit fighters, and the disposal of the failed combatants. Immediately after gaining the new position, she went about locating the other children who had been taken from the New Generation Academy. Most of them had survived the fight pits and were now either working as Crucible Overseers or being readied for sale. Chantique removed them from the system and imprisoned them in the remains of the abandoned academy on Osadia, intending to kill them as revenge against her despised father and her nemesis, Jarael. To that end, once a year after her ascension to Magister Impressor, she took one of the New Generation students out onto the schoolyard and buried them alive beneath the soil.
During the time she served as Magister Impressor, Chantique earned a reputation of cruelty that was made manifest in her treatment of the Gotal slave Goethar Kleej. Shortly after his capture by the Crucible, Kleej angered Chantique. Knowing that it was among the most abominable acts in Gotal culture, Chantique amputated Kleej's cranial horns, thereby depriving him of his ability to receive electromagnetic signals, which were a primary source of sensory information for Gotals. Sometime later, the Crucible executed Kleej's wife and sold Goethar and his son to the Franchise, a Krish-run dueling league that had financial ties with a major galactic corporation, Lhosan Industries. As she was now the leader of the slave ring, both Dace Golliard and the Sanyassan Magister Protector, Bar'injar, worked beneath her, although she maintained a rather antagonistic relationship with both.
- "If Jarael wants a war—I'll give her one. She thinks she's buried the past—but the past will bury her!"
Later that year, Chantique received word from the Franchise executive Bardron that there had been a disturbance during the Tandem Open swoopdueling tournament, one that apparently involved Goethar Kleej and an Arkanian Offshoot. As explained by the Krish, at the end of the Tandem Open, an ally of Kleej's—the renegade Jedi Zayne Carrick—orchestrated the playing of an audio record that contained a testimonial by Kleej regarding the Franchise's business with the Crucible, as well as recordings of Bardron and Lhosan Industries chairman Jervo Thalien discussing their connection to the slave ring. The recording was played throughout the orbital sporting station Jervo's World, and led to public outrage at the league's source of combatants. Since the Franchise and Lhosan Industries were both galaxy-renowned corporations, neither could be seen as having connections with a brutal slave ring, which led the executives of the two companies to contact Chantique to express interest in terminating their relationship. Chantique met with both Bardron and Thalien on Jervo's World to discuss the incident and the end of their business together, but the Zeltron was uninterested in a peaceful resolution. While Thalien assured her that Lhosan Industries would provide the Crucible with a severance payment for their prematurely terminated contract, she attacked the Skrilling with her whip and strangled him to death. Bardron attempted to dissuade her from doing so, as Thalien was the primary source of funds from Lhosan, but Chantique ensured him that the company would simply send another. Once the Chairman was dead, she examined the holographic recordings of the Arkanian Offshoot who had been on the station with Zayne Carrick and identified her as Jarael, swearing that this time, she would find her old enemy and make her and her allies pay for their past transgressions.
Shortly after the issue with the Franchise, Dace Golliard was dispatched to the Koornacht Cluster to make a delivery of slaves to the Sungrazer cooperative's comet mining operation. Just after his successful drop-off, Golliard was contacted by Sungrazer executive Sariyah Budan with regard to the unexpected arrival of two Crucible operatives who demanded more money on behalf of the slaver organization. Golliard assured Budan that the two were not harassing her on the authority of the Crucible, and returned to the Koornacht Cluster to investigate the disturbance. Upon arrival, Golliard discovered that the two operatives were in fact Jarael and Zayne Carrick incognito, attempting to free the eighty Crucible slaves that were under Sungrazer ownership and ruin the business relationship between the slavers and the miners. Although Golliard nearly prevented their escape, he was foiled by the Jedi Carrick and lost both the slaves and Jarael. Chantique was furious with the Captain after the events in the Koornacht Cluster. She bound him in chains and subjected him to a mock court-martial. Golliard attempted to defend his actions, but Chantique refused to listen and prepared to execute the man. Her hand was stayed by the intervention of Magister Protector Bar'injar, who claimed that the Captain was a source of information regarding Jarael and Carrick, and that the two now represented a threat to the Crucible, which was his jurisdiction. The Magister Protector appealed to Chantique's vendetta against Jarael, leading the Zeltron to eventually yield and allow Golliard to live.
The enslavement of Zayne Carrick
- "You want to know how Jarael—how your Jarael—could have been a part of this."
"Whatever she's been to you—it's a lie. It's only good I warned you in time. She is of this place, and it is of her."
- ―Chantique and Zayne Carrick
In that time, the Crucible's training grounds were located on the Core World of Volgax, in the ruins left behind by an extinct civilization. Chantique had established her headquarters in a tower that overlooked the dueling pits, where she conferred with Captain Golliard and Magister Bar'injar regarding the state of the organization. Not long after the debacle in the Koornacht Cluster, Golliard found a Republic Navy pilot adrift in his Aurek fighter during a patrol in deep space. The man went by the name Carth Kamlin, but upon his arrival on Volgax, Chantique recognized him as Zayne Carrick, based on the recordings from Jervo's World and Golliard's logs from the Koornacht Cluster. The renegade Jedi had been sent to infiltrate the Crucible in an attempt to bring it down from within, while a homing device on his starfighter would lead his allies to Volgax so they could aid him in his objective. Chantique found the device and destroyed it, leaving Carrick stranded on Volgax in Crucible custody. With Jarael's closest ally in her hands, Chantique devised a plan to separate the two from one another by convincing the young Jedi that his compatriot had been a ruthless slave driver. She ordered that her lieutenants refer to Carrick by his chosen alias and that he be placed in the combat pits, with every other captive, so that he could bear first-hand witness to the violence created by the Crucible.
Carrick was hesitant to participate in the duels, but proved successful despite using only non-lethal tactics. After his victory in a number of fights, he was pitted against Ralthar Sitan, a slave who had been with the Crucible for years. Sitan was a Caamasi, and retained the memories of all Crucible-held slaves of his species. He experienced these memories in vivid flashes known as memnii, and the slavers, who refused to even acknowledge him by his true name, would not allow him to die so that the agony of all their Caamasi slaves would be preserved within him. By 3963 BBY, Sitan had lost almost all sense of self and had turned against his peaceful nature for the sake of survival. According to Bar'injar, Carrick would be able to read Sitan's memnii and experience the pain and agony that had been wrought by the Crucible, and by extension, Jarael. Thus, the Jedi and Caamasi were made to duel one another, with Carrick emerging victorious. After the battle, Carrick was called up from the fight pits so that Chantique could examine him more closely. She remarked that "Kamlin" showed promise in the duels, but that he would need to become more aggressive if he hoped to survive.
Shortly after, Carrick was approached by Sitan because the Caamasi had recognized him as a Jedi during their earlier duel. After a short conversation, Sitan opened Carrick's mind to his memnii while Bar'injar and Chantique watched. Experiencing the centuries of torture that had been endured by the Crucible's Caamasi slaves traumatized Carrick, and Chantique believed that he was ready to be turned against Jarael. She took the boy back to her tower and revealed to him that she had known his true identity all along, and that she had found and destroyed the homing device that was on the hull of his Aurek fighter. She then went about trying to convince the boy that Jarael was not the woman he thought she was and that she had been a major contributor to the kind of agony he had experienced in Sitan's memnis. Carrick was disgusted by the violence and saw it as meaningless, but Chantique insisted that the Jedi practiced similar actions, and the only difference was that the Order claimed that there was a higher meaning to the constant strife. She continued to sully Jarael's reputation by claiming that she had been among the worst slavers in the Crucible ranks, and that Jarael's name meant "destroyer," a title given to her in recognition of her brutality. She augmented her lies with the power of the Force, gently pushing Carrick to accept her claims.
Chantique continued her manipulations, revealing that she and Jarael had a history, and that the Arkanian Offshoot had stabbed her in the back and supplanted her as Overseer. Carrick thought she was speaking metaphorically when she spoke of being "stabbed in the back," but Chantique revealed to him the large scar left by Jarael's blade. She explained to the Jedi her subsequent sale, but refused to talk in detail about the kind of masters who were in the market for a fifteen year-old Zeltron slave girl who was unable to defend herself. Chantique also related to him the story of her return to the Crucible and alluded to her capture of the New Generation students, but refrained from admitting to her murder of them. She instead told him that they were some place "ironic," and that knowing their current states was a perk of being Magister Impressor. As she tried once more to convince the Jedi to leave Jarael, Carrick realized that she was reinforcing her words with the Force, and was not trying to seduce him as he had originally believed. With her tactic exposed, Chantique gave up on the conversation and summoned her subordinates to take Carrick back to the dueling pits to engage Sitan once more. The Jedi protested and decried the crime of ripping slave children apart from their parents, but was quickly silenced by a furious Chantique, who revealed that it had been her own father who had given her to the Crucible in the first place.
She accompanied the young man to the pits to witness his duel and declared that they would engage in bladed combat in a no-holds-barred brawl. Although Carrick still believed he could resist the violence, Sitan gave in to his surroundings and attacked the young Jedi, pinning him to the ground. While Chantique watched approvingly, the Caamasi used his blade not to finish off Carrick, but to instead kill himself. While the renegade Jedi tried in vain to heal the mortally wounded Caamasi, Chantique approached him and finally conceded that her work with him was done. She allowed Carrick to live and initiated the Crucible's protocol for movement to a new headquarters. As she intended for Carrick to now be found by his allies, she left him behind while she and her lieutenants fled the planet to continue their operations. While she departed Volgax in Golliard's warship, the Gladiator, the captain and Bar'injar both expressed concerns over leaving the Jedi alive. Chantique assured them that her plan had been pulled off perfectly, and that his short experience in the hands of the Crucible would be enough to alienate him from Jarael and drive her out of hiding. Chantique was indeed correct, and immediately after the Crucible escaped Volgax, Carrick ended his working relationship with Jarael out of disgust for her previous time with the slavers. The two parted acrimoniously but not before Jarael told him that her tattoos meant "protector" in the Crucible tongue. Carrick realized too late that Chantique had lied to him.
- "Lovely tradition. There were enough to keep me going for years…until your coming here forced my hand. Too bad…"
"Too bad?! They were powerful! They could have been powerful! If they had been taught the Force…"
"Somebody…should have taught them…to hold their breath."
- ―Chantique and her father, discussing the murder of the New Generation students
The day after the Crucible's departure from Volgax, Chantique experienced a Force vision during dinner with Captain Golliard and Magister Bar'injar. In the vision, she witnessed Jarael's return to Osadia with another individual whom she could not identify, although she was able to discern that her escort was not Carrick. Finally seeing an opportunity to confront her sworn enemy, Chantique hurriedly departed the Crucible's facilities alongside Bar'injar and an elite security detail in order to reach the New Generation Academy ahead of Jarael. Wanting to deprive the Arkanian Offshoot of the chance to save her old friends, Chantique took the remaining students of the academy into the schoolyard and buried them alive. They all soon died, leaving the Zeltron time to prepare for Jarael's arrival. While Bar'injar and his security officers set up a perimeter around the school, Chantique hid in a classroom in wait for her nemesis.
Jarael arrived before long and began an assault on the Crucible personnel using the double-bladed lightsaber that had once belonged to the long-dead Dark Lord of the Sith Exar Kun. Bar'injar and his men were all killed during the attack, allowing Jarael to enter the abandoned academy and search for her classmates. Chantique ambushed her and launched a series of spears at her from the darkness before stepping into the light to reveal herself. Jarael was taken aback by her appearance, as she was still under the impression that her old minder had died after her stabbing. Following a terse reintroduction, their conversation turned to Carrick, for whom Jarael still had feelings, despite their less than cordial parting. Chantique assured her that the Jedi had no further interest in her, and that once she was done dealing with the Arkanian Offshoot, she would hunt him down and throw him back into the dueling pits. The threat enraged Jarael, and she attacked Chantique with Kun's lightsaber. The short fight was dominated by the Arkanian Offshoot and her superior weapon, which easily burned through Chantique's whip. Forced to find another weapon, the Zeltron armed herself with a spiked club and struck Jarael directly in the face. The blow did little to slow her enemy's attack, and Jarael was able to kick Chantique in the head and force her to the floor.
Just as Jarael readied for the killing blow, Zayne Carrick crashed through the roof of the building and tackled her, causing her to drop Kun's lightsaber. Saved from execution, Chantique quickly grabbed the weapon, which was tainted with the aura of the dark side of the Force, and attacked Carrick. His sudden appearance greatly upset her, as it revealed that her gambit on Volgax had failed, despite the atrocities she had revealed to him. While the slaver dueled the Jedi, she tried once more to impress upon him Jarael's complicity in the Crucible's dealings, but Carrick refused to listen. He instead distracted her by revealing that her father, Antos Wyrick, had been the figure she envisioned accompanying Jarael to Osadia and that he was indeed in the academy with them. He further explained that she should be able to sense him, as Kun's lightsaber was amplifying her abilities in the Force. The distraction worked, and Chantique left Carrick and Jarael while she went to search for her father. Her brief exploration of the building yielded nothing, which prompted Chantique to return to Carrick and Jarael and again press her attack. She found her enemies discussing the effects of Kun's saber, which Jarael was apparently unable to feel. Chantique, however, could sense the increase in power and used it to interrupt their conversation and hurl a blast of Force energy in their direction. The potent waves threw the two into pillars on the opposite side of the room and disarmed Carrick, allowing Chantique to pull his lightsaber into her hand with the Force.
Now wielding both Kun's and Carrick's lightsabers, Chantique felt more powerful than ever before and claimed that she could forge her own destiny without the Crucible. She intended to use her new-found power to kill the young Jedi, Jarael, and her father in order to destroy the demons of her past, but as she proclaimed her disappointment that she had been unable to find Wyrick earlier, her father approached her from behind and drove a blade into her back. Chantique fell to the floor in pain, but Wyrick lifted her by her hair and demanded to know where his children had gone. She attempted to explain that she was his child, but he threw her to the floor and claimed that he did not care about his daughter; he cared only for the students whom he had considered successes. Once Chantique admitted that they were in the schoolyard, he pilfered the lightsabers from her broken body and rushed outside. Chantique followed only to watch him search in vain for the students she had killed earlier. As she explained her yearly ritual of vengeful murder and the recent mass burial of the surviving students, Wyrick dropped the lightsabers and became enraged, exclaiming that his children should have been able to fight off a "failure" like his daughter. Despite the apparent end of the New Generation Project, Wyrick reasoned that with Jarael still alive, his vision could still be achieved. However, Carrick disagreed and revealed to Wyrick that Jarael was only marginally Force-sensitive, and that his experiments had all been failures. In fact, the only Force-strong child he had ever produced was his own, and Chantique's abilities were not the result of genetic engineering, but rather heredity; Wyrick himself had been Force-sensitive his entire life, and had passed the trait on to his daughter. The Mandalorian scientist was stunned by the fact, and his shock provided Chantique with an opportunity to pull the blade from her back and lunge at her father. Using his newly discovered Force abilities, Wyrick pulled Kun's and Carrick's lightsabers back to his hands to defend against his daughter. Due to Carrick's influence, it was Kun's double-bladed weapon that reached his hands, and when the Mandalorian activated it, both blades ignited through the father and daughter's abdomens. Chantique and Wyrick died as a result of the impaling.
Personality and traits
- "I don't know her name—just what she was. Gotal legend says our cones can sense evil. Never believed it 'fore I was abducted—but if it were true, she would have provided the proof."
- ―Goethar Kleej
The personality traits that Chantique displayed in her later life were forged during her youth, during which she was heavily influenced by a neglectful father, unstable mother, and later, the atmosphere of suffering created by the Crucible. As a child, Chantique—then known as Kessarah—was seen as nothing more than a failure by Antos Wyrick, and thus came to hate the children whom he regarded as successes. Her hatred pushed her to become something of a schoolyard bully, leading her to physically harass the younger students of the academy. While in the care of the Crucible, her hatred transformed into a desire to see others in pain, as her Zeltron empathetic abilities were overloaded with constant emotions of suffering from the slaves around her. When the young Kessarah was placed in charge of the students taken from the New Generation Academy, she was once again able to resume her torment of them, as well as force them to engage one another in combat for survival. Her actions and brutality during that time earned her the descriptor of "destroyer," which she proudly wore as a purple tattoo on her face and upper arms. With the title came the new name "Chantique," as well as the ire of her subordinate slaves.
After being stabbed by Edessa, Chantique was reduced to the lowest status among Crucible slaves and sold off as an invalid. The experience, as well as the abuse of her new masters, made her wish for death, but she instead murdered her owners in a fit of revenge. Her taste for murder did not end there, however, and she continued the lifestyle of a serial killer for a time until she finally returned to the Crucible to reclaim her lost position. Chantique vowed that no one would ever again have the power to decide her place in the galaxy, and that only she would control her destiny. To that end, she climbed to the highest ranks in the organization's hierarchy and used the position to engage in acts of cruelty and torture directed at lower slaves. Among her victims stood Goethar Kleej, who later described her as "evil," and claimed that he would rather fight in a dueling league for the rest of his life than return to the Crucible to face Chantique again. Kleej had been subjected to one of the violent outbursts of fury to which she was prone, and barely escaped with his life. Lhosan Industries chairman Jervo Thalien was not as lucky, and was killed during one of Chantique's murderous inclinations.
Emotional displays were not uncommon to members of Chantique's species, and had been frequent occurrences for her mother. However, unlike most members of her species, Chantique's outbursts were all anger-driven and violent, as a result of her upbringing in the Crucible. Zayne Carrick described her behavior as psychopathic, and related it to her father's sociopathy. She was even willing to defy the General Orders around which the Crucible was built and went against the organization's command structure in order to act out her rage. Magister Protector Bar'injar was only able to redirect her anger on one occasion by tempting her with the possibility of revenge against the slave who had once defeated her and caused her fall from grace. Bar'injar was among Chantique's most trusted confidants, and the two conspired during her manipulation of Zayne Carrick and Ralthar Sitan.
Although she thoroughly believed in the values and righteousness of the Crucible and its mission, just prior to the end of her life Chantique experienced a Force-driven epiphany. It revealed to her that she no longer had any need for the slave ring, and that her own powers and abilities would be able to accomplish the goals that she had once believed were only achievable through the structure of the Crucible.
- "He threw her away. She's a psychopath. And he's a sociopath. He thought she was a failure. He threw her away."
- ―Zayne Carrick, on Wyrick's abandonment of his daughter
Apart from the Crucible, the biggest influence on Chantique's life was her estranged father, Antos Wyrick. Unlike most Zeltrons, Wyrick was almost entirely unreceptive to the emotional states of others due to his childhood experiences with the emotionless Iskalloni cyborgs. The remaining years of his youth were spent among the Mandalorian Crusaders while they fought in the Great Sith War, during which he became intrigued by the mysteries of the Force. Wyrick's interest in the subject eventually turned to obsession. He used his connections to the Mandalorian warrior clans to fund his New Generation Project, purely for the purposes of gaining a greater understanding of the Force and creating Force-sensitivity within infants. Kessarah was among the first of his test subjects and a disappointment to the man, as she apparently had no evident Force-sensitivity.
Unbeknown to Wyrick, Kessarah was his only success, as he had passed his own latent Force-sensitivity on to her. The other children he produced, although talented, were unable to touch the Force in any profound way; Wyrick mistakenly believed they were the answers he had sought and so left his own daughter in neglect. The scientist's sale of Kessarah to the Crucible was a trauma that the young girl was never able to resolve. She resented her father for his abandonment of her and later displaced her aggression against him onto the other children for whom he had once cared. After brutalizing them for years as an Overseer, she hunted them down and took them to Osadia, where she killed one of them each year as a ritual of revenge.
Wyrick was meanwhile living amongst the Mandalorians, during which time he infiltrated the motley crew of friends Zayne Carrick had assembled, but only in the guise of Mandalorian deserter Rohlan Dyre. Prior to and during his travels with the Jedi, Wyrick kept a private journal in which he made recollections of his project on Osadia and his hopes for the future; any mention of Chantique was omitted from the diary. He was instead concerned only with his daughter's most hated enemy, Jarael.
Due to her father's treatment of her, any mention of the Crucible's cruelty toward families sent Chantique into a rage. When she later learned that Wyrick had accompanied Jarael to Osadia, she put aside her vendetta against the Offshoot and the Jedi Carrick in order to hunt down and kill the man. The scientist had a similar disdain for his daughter, and stabbed her in the back at the first opportunity with which he was presented. As she lay bleeding on the floor of the New Generation Academy, she attempted to reach out to her father by revealing that she was his child. Wyrick already knew this but cared little, and therefore left her to die. He was later devastated to learn that the daughter he had abandoned decades prior was the only success he had ever had, but was unable to make amends; Chantique, having survived the stabbing, attacked her father—an act that ultimately resulted in the death of both Zeltrons.
- "I'm so sick of that navy act, Golliard—sick to death. Yours. Consider this an old debt repaid—"
- ―Chantique, as she prepares to execute Golliard
Chantique's relationship with Captain Dace Golliard was a mixture of professional etiquette and personal animosity. As the man to whom Wyrick sold his daughter, Golliard was Chantique's first introduction to the Crucible and the new way of life she eventually adopted as her own. The young Zeltron eventually outranked Golliard in the Crucible's hierarchy, placing him in a position of subservience to Chantique. He served his Magister faithfully, but held a deep-seated antipathy for the woman. She fostered a similar dislike of Golliard, but both slavers put aside their disagreements while discussing the affairs of the Crucible.
Dace Golliard was a former member of the Republic Navy and retained his military demeanor despite being absent without leave from the Republic's fighting forces. Following his failure to capture Jarael and Carrick in the Koornacht Cluster, Chantique revealed to him her distaste for his "navy act" before attempting to execute him. Indeed, the Magister Impressor thought she owed Golliard retribution for his offenses against her earlier in life, and felt as though killing the man would be something akin to collecting his debt. She ultimately chose not to carry out the execution, but Golliard nonetheless continued to abhor his superior. When Chantique experienced a Force vision after departing Volgax, Golliard hoped that she was instead having a stroke. In accordance with her vision, the Magister Impressor left for Osadia while the captain was free to continue his search for potential slaves. After he was apprehended by the Jedi Carrick and other Republic forces, Golliard willingly surrendered Chantique's location, thereby allowing for the confrontation that ultimately resulted in the Zeltron's death.
- "But later I realized she was just another slave, an older kid assigned to "train" the younglings. So I challenged her—and won!"
- ―Jarael, on Chantique
The focus of Chantique's most intense hatred was reserved for one individual—Jarael, formerly known as Edessa. The two were acquainted with one another while they both attended the New Generation Academy, but Chantique was Jarael's elder by about two years. Additionally, they were separated by Antos Wyrick's favoritism, which placed Jarael in his good graces and Chantique among the rejects of the New Generation project. When Jarael and the other Mandalorian Knight children later came under Chantique's supervision within the Crucible, the Zeltron made sure to regard them with particular brutality. This led to Jarael's stabbing of Chantique, which the latter saw as more of a betrayal than a retaliation. The Arkanian Offshoot assumed Chantique's former position of Overseer, while Chantique fell to the lowest status among slaves of the Crucible. The following years were filled with agony for the young girl, all of which she attributed to Jarael. Upon her return to the Crucible, Chantique was disappointed to learn that her archenemy had fled the organization. However, she was able to take solace in the fact that many of the New Generation students she was killing as retribution against her father were also old friends of Jarael's.
Despite enduring years without any contact from Jarael or information on her whereabouts, Chantique refused to give up hope for revenge. Upon learning that an Arkanian Offshoot matching her description had been seen on Jervo's World, Chantique personally traveled to the space station to investigate. She was prepared to kill Dace Golliard after the Captain's failure to bring Jarael to her, but was dissuaded by Bar'injar's suggestion that Golliard's experience may give her an opportunity to strike at Jarael's friend, Zayne Carrick. While Carrick was in her custody, Chantique focused on convincing him that Jarael had been a brutal and merciless slave driver, and that she had propagated the violence that the Jedi so despised. She was ultimately successful, and was thoroughly satisfied with the wedge she was able to drive between Carrick and Jarael.
On Osadia, Chantique was finally able to confront Jarael after years of searching for vengeance. Jarael, who believed she had killed her minder in the stabbing years before, was surprised by Chantique's sudden appearance. The two entered a fierce duel after Chantique suggested that she had been intimate with Carrick and planned to take him back to the slave pits in the coming days. Jarael was vicious in her attack and nearly killed Chantique, exclaiming that her only wish was for the Zeltron to finally leave her alone. Despite Chantique's efforts, Carrick returned to Jarael to prevent her from succumbing to the desire for revenge and killing her foe. While disappointed by Carrick's loyalty to his friend, Chantique was undeterred from her goal and remained dedicated to ensuring that the Jedi and Jarael pay for their offenses.
Powers and abilities
- "I know I left school a little early—but as you can see, I've learned some things since then."
In the eyes of her father, Antos Wyrick, Chantique was unremarkable and untalented. To the contrary, the Zeltron girl exhibited very little refined talent in her youth, but had in fact inherited her father's previously-unrealized Force-sensitivity. She was unaware of this ability and used her own martial prowess to thrive in the slave pits of the Crucible in her early years. After being stabbed by Jarael, Chantique discovered her innate Force talents and used them to heal her wounds and overpower her owners. Her rage and desire to see others in pain during that time led her to become immersed in the dark side of the Force.
Her Force abilities after that point continued to mature, and she became proficient in the art of influencing the minds of others. Through subtle mental manipulation, she was nearly able to convince the renegade Jedi Zayne Carrick that Jarael was not to be trusted. He originally interpreted her actions as typical Zeltron seduction, but she was indeed attempting to direct his thoughts. She later experienced a vivid premonition that directed her toward Osadia. During the confrontation on the planet, Chantique was able to sense the corruptive influences of Exar Kun's lightsaber and was drawn to the weapon. Upon attaining it, her powers were amplified and she was able to project a powerful wave of Force energy that threw Carrick and Jarael across a New Generation schoolroom.
Even without the use of the Force, Chantique was a formidable opponent. The slaver was proficient in the use of a lengthy whip, and she used that weapon to murder Jervo Thalien. After Jarael destroyed her whip with Kun's lightsaber, Chantique armed herself with a club and landed several serious blows against her attacker. A tenacious survivor, Chantique survived two stabbings directly in the back and brutal beatings at the hands of her owners, Jarael, and her father.
Behind the scenes
Chantique was created by John Jackson Miller for the comic series Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Although she was not introduced until the latter parts of the series, Chantique became a major character with a detailed history and served as an antagonist for the main characters up until the comic's final issue.
Although she debuted in the forty-first issue of the series, Chantique's name was first used as an alias by Jarael on the banking world of Telerath in the eleventh issue of the series, Reunion, Part 1. When she finally did make her first appearance, Chantique became a critical character in the development of the "Jarael arc"—John Jackson Miller's term for the issues concerning Jarael's backstory. Chantique's existence and her reveal at the end of issue forty-one were closely guarded secrets at Dark Horse Comics, and the company complied with Miller's wish for the character to not be mentioned in any solicitations for later issues.
In the original print of Knights of the Old Republic 44, Chantique is depicted without her facial and upper arm tattoos. This mistake by artist Bong Dazo was rectified in the trade paperback reprint.
- Knights of the Old Republic 11 (Name used as alias)
- Knights of the Old Republic 40 (Vision to Jarael) (Indirect mention only)
- Knights of the Old Republic 41 (First appearance)
- Knights of the Old Republic 42 (Indirect mention only)
- Knights of the Old Republic 44
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic: Destroyer
- Knights of the Old Republic 48 (Mentioned only)
- Knights of the Old Republic 49
- Knights of the Old Republic 50
- "Blaster" – Star Wars Insider 149 (Indirect mention only)
- "Authors of the Expanded Universe: The Legend of Dark Horse" – Star Wars Insider 154 (Picture only)
Notes and references
- Knights of the Old Republic 45
- In Knights of the Old Republic 46, Chantique places Jarael's age at twenty-five, and her own at about two or three years more. 3990 BBY is twenty-seven years prior to the Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic series.
- Knights of the Old Republic 50
- Knights of the Old Republic 48
- Knights of the Old Republic 41
- Knights of the Old Republic 44
- Knights of the Old Republic 46
- The Essential Atlas
- Knights of the Old Republic 16
- Knights of the Old Republic 40
- Knights of the Old Republic 43
- Knights of the Old Republic 42
- Knights of the Old Republic 49