As the New Republic takes devastating losses in the ongoing war with the scattered remnants of the Empire, the galaxy's future depends on three small children–among them the Jedi twins—born to incredible powers and perils, as an extraordinary new Star Wars saga unfolds…
While the New Republic struggles to decide what to do with the deadly Sun Crusher—a new doomsday weapon stolen from the Empire by Han Solo—the renegade Imperial Admiral Daala uses her fleet of Star Destroyers to conduct guerrilla warfare on peaceful planets. And now she threatens the watery homeworld of Admiral Gial Ackbar.
But as the battle for a planet rages, an even greater danger arises at Luke Skywalker's Jedi academy. A brilliant student delves dangerously into the dark side of the Force and unleashes the spirit of an ancient master of the evil order that warped Darth Vader himself. Working together, they may become an enemy greater than any the New Republic has ever fought… more powerful than even a Jedi Master can face.
While the New Republic struggles to decide what to do with the deadly Sun Crusher—a new doomsday weapon stolen from the Empire by Han Solo—the renegade Imperial Admiral Daala uses her fleet of Star Destroyers to conduct guerrilla warfare on peaceful planets. And now she threatens Mon Calamari, the watery homeworld of Admiral Ackbar and important shipyard for the New Republic. But as the battle for a planet rages, an even greater danger emerges at Luke Skywalker's Jedi academy on Yavin 4. A strong but untrained student named Gantoris delves dangerously into the dark side of the Force and unleashes the spirit of the ancient dark-side master Exar Kun, who instructs him in the creation of a unique, three-crystal lightsaber that can be focused to extend beyond the normal length to that of a spear. The spirit of Exar Kun also tries, with disastrous consequences, to entice him toward the dark side. Although unsuccessful, this sets the stage for another of Luke's students, Kyp Durron, to face the same choice as Gantoris. Working together, they may become an enemy greater than any the New Republic has ever fought—more powerful than even a Jedi Master can face.
Kyp Durron begins his Jedi training with Luke Skywalker during this story, but first, he is being treated to the time of his life by Han Solo. Han felt that because Kyp had been in the mines most of his entire life, that he deserved to have a little fun.
When he does get to the Jedi Praxeum, he starts learning the ways of the light side of the Force, astonishing all the other students with his extraordinary talent and his aptitude for Force training; unfortunately, he also starts learning of the dark side of the Force after Gantoris' death. (Gantoris had been corrupted by the spirit of Exar Kun, but turned against him; in revenge, Exar Kun burned Gantoris alive.) Exar Kun's spirit begins tempting Kyp. Kyp's power increases considerably, and he is tainted by the dark side and the lies Kun tells him of the history of the Jedi Order. After a violent disagreement with Tionne over ancient history (involving the fall of Exar Kun), Kyp assaults Skywalker; with the dark aid of Kun, Kyp rips Luke's soul from his body, placing him in a coma. With his strength in the Force, Kyp reaches out and guides the Sun Crusher from the heart of the gas giant Yavin, and sets out on a mission of vengeance against Admiral Daala and the Imperial Remnant. He knows that his brother, Zeth Durron, is still part of the Empire, and he sets course for Carida, intending to rescue him by force if need be.
- ISBN 0553297996; July 1994, Bantam Spectra, 354-page paperback
- ISBN 0553472003 and ISBN 0553745646; July 1994, Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, Abridged cassette
- ISBN 0606082034; July 1994, Sagebrush Corporation, Turtleback
- ISBN 3802523377; February 1995, Heyne-Verlag, 314-page German hardcover
- ISBN 0553408097; August 18, 1994, Transworld Publishers, 368-page UK paperback
- ISBN 0001050850; February 19, 1996, HarperCollins Publishers, UK abridged cassette
- ISBN 8820023105; November 1996, Sperling&Kupfer, 300-page Italian paperback (Il discepolo del lato oscuro)
- ISBN 8071869198; 2003, EGMONT ČR, 227-page Czech paperback (Temný učedník)
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