Doctor Aphra Annual 1 is the first annual issue of the Marvel comic book series Star Wars: Doctor Aphra. The comic was written by Kieron Gillen with art by Marc Laming and was released on August 23, 2017.
- Doctor Aphra has a troubled past full of parental drama and war.
- But what about her Wookiee shadow, Black Krrsantan?
- Find out just how this Wookiee warrior is as frightening as they say…
- …and then some!
A willing quarry
Years ago on the planet Kashyyyk, a group of Trandoshan bounty hunters and on the planet Kashyyyk to hunt Wookiees. Kootan wants to kill a Wookiee for a rug but the group's leader Noka tells him that the Xonti Brothers want a living Wookiee to train as a gladiator. Kootan grumbles about not being able to kill a Wookiee for its hide. Noka warns him that two acquisition crew members were lost the last month but Kootan does not believe his warning. Noka reminds Kootan that they are slavers hunting for live prey.
Ahead, they spot an unconscious and bound Wookiee, who had been left as bait. The Trandoshan slaving party is soon ambushed by a sniper, who kills several members of their party. Noka says that the Wookiee was left as bait while Kootan is surprised that a Wookiee would leave a fellow Wookiee to bleed to death as bait. Kootan attempts to kill the unseen Wookiee attacker but is knocked to the ground by the unseen foe and thrown against a trunk, killing him. Noka soon finds himself face to face with the Wookiee attacker who asks him a question. Noka confirms that he works for the Xonti Brothers and asks the Wookiee what he wants.
A Wookiee interest story
In the present, Noka recounts his encounter with the willing Wookiee quarry to two human journalists named Dixnet Dat and Domthro Rus. He says that the Wookiee killed the other four slavers but spared him because he was working for the Xonti brothers. The two journalists decided to meet this Wookiee.
Weeks later, they travel to a spaceport where they are met by Dr Chelli Lona Aphra, who is posing as "Sulan Do." She claims to be Black Krrsantan's agent and is accompanied by the assassin droids Triple Zero and BT-1. Dr Aphra quips that Black Krrsantan is not in a good mood while Triple Zero tells BT-1 that their master is up to something and that they must pretend not to be "murderdroids." Dixnet thinks that they should have gotten a protocol droid but Domthro manages to assure Dixnet of his Shyriiwook language skills.
While Dixnet and Domthro go to meet with Black Krrsantan in a cantina, Dr Aphra enlists Triple Zero and BT-1 in breaking into the journalists' starship. Inside the cantina, Domthro asks the Wookiee why he has sworn revenge against the Xonti Brothers despite being trained by them. Dixnet asks what they did to him that made him hate them so much.
In a flashback scene, the Dowutin brothers receive a shipment of prospective gladiators including a Dowutin, a Talz, a Gamorrean, and Black Krrsantan, who alone is not bound. When the first Xonti brother asks Noka why the Wookiee is not in chains, Noka tells them that he volunteered. The first Xonti brother admires Krrsantan's ambition and willingness to learn before they stun him. After locking him in a cell, they tell him that the first lesson is that he wears chains.
In the present, Domthro tells Black Krrsantan that he and Dixnet syndicate their stories across the Undervine, which Dixnet describes as an independent alternative to the mainstream HoloNet. She explains that they can anonymously and safely distribute stories to be sold on local markets. Dixnet claims that the Undervine is neutral in the Galactic Civil War and is on the side of truth, "the most powerful thing of all." Domthro quips that solar-system-sized superlasers are more powerful. Dixnet reminds Domthro that the Death Star was destroyed and that the Galactic Empire is not as powerful as it thinks. Domthro is cynical about their reportage on the Death Star's destruction.
Black Krrsantan recounts his training, which involves trudging through snow and fighting with other gladiators in death matches. The Xonti Brothers decide to test who will break by exposing their recruits to a sarlacc monster which devours the Talz, a rancor which devours a Herglic trainee, and forcing them to fight to the death. In the end, only Black Krrsantan and the Dowutin survive. The first Xonti brother tells the second Xonti brother that there is a market for "ultraheavies." He reasons that to sell them well, they need to give one an edge.
The first Xonti brother decides to insert knuckle dusters into Black Krrsantan's hands. The Wookiee is bound to an operating table and sedated. The first Xonti brother brandishes an electric saw. One recovery later, Black Krrsantan bests the Dowutin in combat. The Xonti brothers decide to sell him.
Dr Aphra's break-in
Meanwhile, Dr Aphra and her droids reach the cockpit of the journalists' ship. BT-1 grumbles but Dr Aphra counters that blowing a hole in the door would have alerted the journalists. BT-1 agrees to slice into the Undervine transmitter while Triple Zero complements the protocol droid's slicing skills. Dr Aphra hopes that Black Krrsantan will keep the journalists preoccupied enough for her to transmit a message.
In Black Krrsantan's flashback, the Wookiee bests several alien gladiators including a Nikto, a Houk, and a Trandoshan. Krrsantan beats the Trandoshan to death. The Nikto charges at him but Krrsantan blocks his blade by using the Trandoshan's body as a shield. The Houk tries to intervene but the Wookiee shatters his blade with his metal fists. Black Krrsantan hurls the Houk into the flames and grabs the Nikto by the neck. Krrsantan agrees to spare his life after the Nukto shouts that Black Krrsantan is defeated and unbowed. Several gladiatorial masters try to buy Black Krrsantan but the Xonti brothers are unwilling and say that the final lesson is showmanship.
Returning to the present, Dixnet concludes that Black Krrsantan volunteered, did not realized what he was getting into, and is now seeking revenge for what she regards as his "arrogant mistake." Domthro thinks that Dixnet could be politer. However, Dixnet is unwilling to change her tone. To the journalists' surprise, the Wookiee roars back in Shyriiwook. Dixnet and Domthro leave disappointed but hide their feelings from Dr Aphra.
Dr Aphra's plan
After the journalists depart, Dixnet asks Domthro what the Wookiee said. Domthro explains that Black Krrsantan said that "revenge is an oversimplification." Since the brothers changes his life, Krrsantan feels that they owe him a life debt but that he was unable to pay them back until he changes their lives in a similar way that they changes his. Until then, Black Krrsantan believes that he will always owe them. While the Wookiee does not want revenge, he believes that all debts must be settled. After settling his debts with the Xonti brothers, Krrsantan says that he wants to come and peel the "loud-mouthed wordsmiths", which means the journalists.
Domthro suggests moving to another galaxy but Dixnet discovers that someone has used their Undervine transmitter to broadcast a message advertising an auction for a rare alien artifact. As a result, they have lost their posting privileges for violating the Undervine's rules against advertising.
Meanwhile, Dr Aphra thanks Black Krrsantan for distracting the journalists so that she could set up the Auction of Rur on the Sorca Retreat without identifying herself. When she asks if he is okay, the Wookiee say he wants to fight. Dr Aphra allows him to go while Triple Zero says at least if you value your life. Later, Dr Aphra and Triple Zero watch as Black Krrsantan takes on two gladiators including a Besalisk in an arena.
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