- "My boy. My precious boy. Are you ready to be the Outcast? Are you prepared to become the Contingency should it come to that? There will be others you must call to your side."
- ―Darth Sidious, to Gallius Rax
Gallius Rax, once known as Galli and code-named Operator, was a post-Endor Imperial warlord of the largest remaining Imperial faction and officially the Counselor to the Empire during the final days of the Galactic Civil War. Mentored by Darth Sidious—Sith Lord and Galactic Emperor—Rax ascended through the ranks of the Imperial Navy, gaining command of the Executor-class Star Dreadnought Ravager. However, his true purpose as the Emperor's protégé was to ensure the success of the Contingency, a clandestine directive to destroy the Galactic Empire in the event of Sidious' death.
Born on the desert planet Jakku, Galli was an orphaned child when he met Sheev Palpatine, the public persona of Darth Sidious. Adopting the name "Gallius Rax," he became a decorated Imperial officer during the Age of the Empire. He was serving as an admiral when the Emperor was killed in the Battle of Endor, an event which triggered the Contingency and Rax's role in carrying it out. On the surface he took steps to stabilize the Empire, such as creating the Shadow Council. In secret, however, Rax leaked intelligence to the New Republic, further undermining the Empire. He maneuvered his way into a position of greater power by sidelining Grand Admiral Rae Sloane and Grand Vizier Mas Amedda. Despite his official role as an advisor to the Shadow Council, Rax was Emperor in all but name.
The Battle of Jakku commenced when the New Republic forces invaded Counselor Rax's homeworld, where the Empire rallied under the counselor's leadership. Unknown to his own soldiers, Rax intended to sacrifice most of his followers while saving only the ones he deemed essential to the Empire's rebirth in the Unknown Regions. Although Rax did not live to see his new Empire take form, the officers he sent beyond known space became part of a movement that evolved into the First Order, which ultimately toppled the New Republic three decades after the war's conclusion.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Personality and traits
- 3 Skills and abilities
- 4 Equipment
- 5 Behind the scenes
- 6 Appearances
- 7 Sources
- 8 Notes and references
- "You will go back to Jakku. The spot there in the dirt where my droids were operating is precious. Not just to me, but to the galaxy at large. It is significant… You will go back there and you will monitor my droids excavating the ground. Then I will send more droids and they will build something there below the ground. I want you to guard this space. Can you do that?"
- ―Sheev Palpatine, to Galli
A male individual, Gallius Rax was born on the desert planet Jakku in or around the year 42 BBY. An orphan, Gallius was originally named "Galli" and spent the first twelve years of his life as a servant to the Anchorite Kolob. Rax chafed under Kolob's service and longed for a better life offworld. At the age of twelve in 30 BBY, he stowed away onboard the Imperialis in an attempt to escape Jakku, after seeing Adviser Yupe Tashu order a droid to begin excavating a location on the Plaintive Hand plateau.
During the trip, Sheev Palpatine—the public persona of Darth Sidious, Dark Lord of the Sith—sensed his presence and offered Rax two choices: to either end his life quickly, or to accept the destiny Palpatine sensed for him. Choosing the latter option, Palpatine took him on as a protégé and gave him his first task: to return to Jakku to guard the excavation site by any means necessary and to monitor the droids doing the excavating. Before returning young Galli to Jakku, Palpatine stated that they would be on a first-name basis, introducing himself as Sheev, and stating that "an Emperor must have friends, after all."
Rax's first task
- "Galli was the boy… Now the child has returned, and he is a child no longer."
"Where did he go when he used to disappear?"
"The Valley of the Eremite. Near a rock formation called the Plaintive Hand. That was where he could be found, the stories say. He wouldn't let anyone else get close. He had … traps, he had children protecting it, he had trained beasts to guard it. It wasn't far from the orphanage…"
- ―Kolob and Rae Sloane, on Gallius Rax's origins
After returning to Jakku, Galli incited several of the other children including Brev, Narawal, and Kateena to rebel against Kolob. He rejected Kolob's teaching that the Anchorites were bound on Jakku to the Jedi and to the light side of the Force. Galli used the other children and trained beasts to guard the excavation site. To preserve the site's secrecy, he later killed the other children and any intruders who tried to explore the site.
For the next ten years, Galli guarded the Plaintive Hand excavation site from any intruders. He interacted with the site's droids and occasionally Adviser Tashu. The excavation site turned out to be a boring hole which led to Jakku's core. An Observatory housing computerized maps of the Unknown Regions was built on top of the boring hole. The boring hole and Observatory were central to Palpatine's mysterious Contingency plan to destroy the Empire should he die prematurely. As a Sith Lord, Palpatine was unwilling to share his Empire with a successor.
In 20 BBY, Galli had a second meeting with his benefactor Palpatine aboard the Imperialis. Using the game of Shah-tezh as an illustration, Palpatine briefed Galli about his Contingency and tasked the young man with destroying the Empire should he die prematurely. Satisfied with Galli's services and potential, Palpatine then arranged for him to receive an education and military training. Galli subsequently adopted the name Gallius Rax. Receiving an Imperial education, Rax developed an appreciation for operas and music. He particularly enjoyed The Cantata of Cora Vessora, a Galactic Republic opera of a dark witch who refused to become a Jedi or a Sith.
- "There are unforeseen costs that must be paid. You may have to be the one who pays those costs, Galli. Which means it is time now to join the Empire. You will serve me in whatever way I require, and if all goes well you will remain the Contingency. If you fail me, then I will find another, for this role is one of great purpose and destiny. Will you be what I require?"
- ―Darth Sidious, to Galli
Essentially a ghost until two decades before the Battle of Jakku, Gallius Rax first appeared on the Imperial Navy roster at the age of twenty when he was assigned to the Naval Intelligence Agency and given the rank of Commander. This ranking was considered by many to be abnormally high, considering his lack of history with the Imperial Military. His reports, designated "Eyes Only" for Imperial Security Bureau Colonel and eventually NIA Deputy Director Wullf Yularen, bypassed Vice Admirals Terrinald Screed and Dodd Rancit in the chain of command. Following the destruction of the first Death Star and the death of Yularen, his reports were sent directly to Emperor Palpatine himself.
During his Imperial Navy service, he was awarded the title of Hero of the Galactic Empire, as well as the Nova Star, the Medal of Service, the Galactic War on Insurgency medal, the Gilded Sun, and the Emperor's Will medal, though the information concerning the reason he was awarded the medals, or when, remained unlisted in Imperial records well into 5 ABY. Rax eventually attained the rank of Admiral by 4 ABY.
Shortly before the Battle of Endor, Rax was summoned to the Emperor's throne room on board the second Death Star. Rax's visit coincided with the landing of a rebel strike force that included the Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker on the Sanctuary Moon. Sensing a shatterpoint approaching, Sidious told Rax to be ready to carry out the Contingency. He then commanded Rax to move the Super Star Destroyer Ravager to the Vulpinus Nebula until the events of the shatterpoint had been resolved. Sidious subsequently perished during the battle which also saw the death of Darth Vader and the destruction of both the Death Star II and the Executor.
In the months following the Battle of Endor, Rax rose to the rank of Fleet Admiral and set about to fulfill the Contingency. Among his Imperial comrades, Rax claimed that he was working to build a stronger, more efficient Empire.
The Akivan purge
- "This is how it must be. The Empire became this…ugly, inelegant machine. Crude and inefficient. We needed to be broken into pieces. We needed to get rid of those who want to see that old machine churning ineluctably forward. It's time for something better. Something new. An Empire worthy of the galaxy it will rule."
- ―Gallius Rax, to Rae Sloane
Knowing that those whose loyalty to the Empire wavered had no place in a new Empire, Rax took on the codename the "Operator," feeding intelligence to the fledgling New Republic on vulnerable Imperial routes and galactic leaders who would likely secede from the Empire and join the Republic. At some point, he came into contact with Admiral Rae Sloane, the officer who took command of the Imperial fleet during the Battle of Endor after the demise of the Imperial leadership there and ordered the retreat to the Annaj system.
Deeming Sloane as trustworthy, Rax sent her to the planet Akiva, where an emergency summit among several remaining Imperial leaders was to be held. Sloane kept Rax's involvement in arranging the summit a secret from the others, telling Moff Valco Pandion that he was no longer living. Sloane and the other Imperials–Moff Pandion, General Jylia Shale, Adviser Yupe Tashu, and the financier Arsin Crassus–formed the Imperial Future Council, which sought to preserve the fragmenting Empire.
Under the guise of the Operator, Rax contacted the New Republic and informed them of the Imperial presence at Akiva, prompting Republic Fleet Admiral Gial Ackbar to dispatch a probe droid to the planet to investigate. Once the probe had reached Akiva, the Operator spoke with Ackbar and Ensign Deltura, the Republic officer responsible for launching the probe, via hologram. After learning from the droid that no starships were detected going in or out of Akiva, the Operator told Deltura to have the probe ping the comm relays on the planet. Upon receiving no response, the Operator informed Ackbar that this was an Imperial trick, and that the Empire must have instituted a planetary blockade and hidden their ships. The Operator asked the Mon Calamari admiral if he would act on this information, but received no reply, and had his feed cut by the admiral.
After receiving a message from Republic captain Wedge Antilles, who was being held captive by the Empire on Akiva, Ackbar ordered Commander Kyrsta Agate to take a small fleet to the planet and engage Imperial forces there. A battle ensued in the planet's orbit, resulting in the destruction of two Star Destroyers, the death of Moff Pandion and Crassus, and the capture of General Shale and Adviser Tashu. Admiral Sloane, who commanded the Imperial forces during the battle, managed to escape aboard Pandion's Destroyer, the Vanquish, and rendezvoused with Rax in the Vulpinus Nebula. Aboard the Ravager, Sloane met with Admiral Rax and asked him about the Republic transmissions sent from his ship. Admiral Rax told her that forcing the Republic and Empire to engage over Akiva had been a test, proving that Sloane was one of his "best and brightest." The other IFC members had failed this test, and as a result were no longer a burden to the admiral. After informing Sloane of his plans for a new Empire, he sent her on her way as he continued thinking to himself.
During this period, Imperial statistician Ralsius Paldora bore witness to several of Rax's meetings with his senior staff, picking up data about Imperial shipping routes, refueling locations, hidden armaments, and how to access the Imperial-occupied world of Kashyyyk. When he later defected to the New Republic, Paldora went on to trade the intel with Han Solo in exchange for safe passage from Takodana and a new life.
- "Is it wise to devote resources to rescue his boy?"
"The Empire must be fertile and young. Children are crucial to our success. Many of our officers are old. We need that kind of vitality. That brand of energy you get with the young. The Empire needs children."
- ―Rae Sloane and Gallius Rax
Following the events on Akiva, Fleet Admiral Gallius Rax arranged for Sloane to be promoted to Grand Admiral. While Grand Admiral Sloane served as the public face of the Empire, Rax ruled from behind the scenes while posing as her lower-ranking adviser aboard the Ravager. In addition, Rax arranged for Sloane's attache Adea Rite to be rescued from New Republic custody. He cultivated Adea as his lover and used her to spy and monitor Sloane's movements. Rax maintained an opulent office aboard the Ravager that included an aquarium full of diaphanous water creatures, weapons, ornate tapestry, and a holomap of the galaxy.
After Sloane had given a propaganda broadcast, Rax summoned the Grand Admiral for a meeting to discuss his plan to establish a Shadow Council and to rescue Commandant Brendol Hux from the besieged world of Arkanis. After talking about opera and propaganda, Rax talked about creating a brain trust in order to promote the resurgence of a "stronger, leaner"' Empire. Rax identified Hux as a prospective member for this Shadow Council and ordered Sloane to rescue Hux and his illegitimate son Armitage Hux. Rax also advocated a breeding program to produce children in order to revitalize the ranks of the Empire. Rax's cult-like ideas and remark about "fact and truth being separate things" unnerved Sloane, who disagreed with his agenda.
Putting Rax's orders into action, Sloane ordered Adea to hire the bounty hunter Mercurial Swift to rescue Commandant Hux and his son. Sloane then departed on a secret mission to Coruscant, where she discovered that Rax had withheld the existence of a second Super Star Destroyer and a photo showing a young Rax and several Imperial officials on a desert world. Despite Sloane's efforts to maintain secrecy, Admiral Rax learned about her mission through the auspices of Adea Rite.
Several days later, Grand Admiral Sloane convened an inaugural dinner meeting for the Shadow Council under Rax's orders. When the Imperial propagandist Ferric Obdur suggested that the Empire promote the narrative that they were the underdog who had been kicked out by a deadbeat father, Rax applauded Obdur's remarks and revealed himself to the Shadow Council. Rax told the delegates that he had selected them because of their ideas and talents. Rax told the Shadow Council that they would spearhead the resurgence of the Empire.
When Commandant Hux asked about how the Empire would rejuvenate its depleted resources, Rax informed his guests that his fleet in the Vulpinus Nebula was not all that was left. In addition, Rax commanded other fleets in the Almagest, the Recluse's Nebula, the Queluhan Nebula, the Ro-Loo Triangle, and the Inamorata which consisted of hundreds of Star Destroyers and thousands of smaller craft. Rax and Sloane claimed that they had withheld this information from other Imperial military commanders since they did not know who they could trust. When Borrum told Rax that they needed more boots and armor on the ground, Rax reassured them that the Empire still controlled three factory worlds in the Outer Rim—Zhadalene, Korrus, and Belladoon—which were churning out more material for the Imperial war machine.
At that point, Adea Rite entered the room to inform Sloane about the loss of the Star Destroyer Scythe. Sloane also uncovered evidence that Rax had facilitated the Star Destroyer's destruction by blocking all incoming messages from the Scythe. Rax viewed the ship's Commander Valent as a rival and was willing to sacrifice him in order to unify the Empire. Later, Rax hosted Adea in his personal quarters. He reassured the young attache that Admiral Sloane would come around and then proceeded to kiss and embrace her.
Smoke and mirrors
- "You're pulling strings, Admiral. I don't know what they're connected to or why you're pulling them. I don't even know who you are or where you come from. You are little more than a shadow—and yet you lead the Empire."
- ―Rae Sloane, to Gallius Rax
Later, Fleet Admiral Rax was visiting his private garden in the upper echelons of the Ravager when he was visited by Grand Admiral Sloane. Due to the blast-glass enclosure, Rax realized that Sloane had brought a blaster and had come to kill him. When Rax asked Sloane if she despised him, Sloane claimed that she respected him. Rax responded that she could respect and despise him at the same time. He admitted that he respected the late Emperor Palpatine but saw him as a monster and one who made mistakes, despite Rax's long time friendship with the him.
Rax then revealed to Sloane that he was aware of her visit to Grand Vizier Mas Amedda on Coruscant and her investigation into his background. Knowing that she had come to kill him, Rax told Sloane to relent. He then told her about his secret plan to attack Chandrila, the capital of the New Republic. When Sloane warned that people would eventually realize that he was the puppet-master controlling her from behind her scenes, Rax offered to support her candidacy as Emperor and to serve as her adviser.
Rax refused to tell Sloane who he was but instead told her about his plan to attack Chandrila. When Sloane queried about the details of the attack, he was evasive and told her that the "pieces were almost in place." When Sloane demanded to know more, he told her to trust him and reassured her that she was a vital resource. While Sloane did not trust Rax, she agreed to keep their talk confidential and to be ready when the time came.
Later, Rax countermanded Sloane's orders to Vice Admiral Urian Orlan to send a team to investigate the unauthorized repair trip by two suspicious vessels to Ashmead's Lock prison on the planet Kashyyyk. Rax told Sloane to call Orlan back and tell him that the Empire did approve the repairs on the prison. When Sloane responded that they have not given such orders, Rax recognized the two ships as belonging to Norra Wexley's team of Imperial hunters and the rebel leader Han Solo. Concealing his plans, Rax rationalized his actions on the grounds that the Empire had to appear weak. Sloane reluctantly complied with Rax's orders but send a secret ally to the Kashyyyk system on her behalf.
Rax's secret plan to attack Chandrila involved using the rebel prisoners held at Ashmead's Lock. Under Rax's orders, the prisoners had been fitted with inorganic bio-chips which would turn them into unwilling assassins when he had broadcast an order. Rax also operated a network of spies throughout the galaxy. One of his Bith agents on the planet Irudiru reported that the rebel smuggler Han Solo had teamed up with a group of New Republic operatives led by Norra Wexley, whose husband was imprisoned inside Ashmead's Lock. Rax allowed Solo and Norra's team to raid the prison and rescue the inmates. The prisoners were then flown to Chandrila, allowing for the next stage of Rax's plan to proceed.
Rax had another agent on Chandrila who turned out be the New Republic Senate Guard Windom Traducier, who shared Rax's views that the New Republic would only bring chaos to the galaxy. After learning that Chancellor Mon Mothma was organizing a Liberation Day celebration to showcase the liberated prisoners, Traducier installed a transponder on the roof of the Hanna City opera house. He used the transponder to summon the assassins and then armed them with concealed blasters. Rax and Traducier planned to use the assassins to kill Chancellor Mothma and the New Republic military and political leadership with one stroke.
Later, Rax instructed Sloane to contact Chancellor Mothma, Fleet Admiral Ackbar, and Princess Leia Organa with a faux offer to discuss peace with the New Republic. Grand Admiral Sloane agreed to travel to Chandrila personally to conduct peace talks with Chancellor Mothma under the auspices of the Galactic Senate, the New Republic's legislative body. The talks were timed to take place after the Liberation Day celebration in Hanna City. On the eve of the mission to Chandrila, Rax reassured the Grand Admiral that she would be safe during the attack. However, Sloane rightfully suspected that the Fleet Admiral was setting a trap or a test for her.
- "I only serve Palpatine."
"Emperor Rax serves Palpatine, too. Now go."
"Yes. Yes. It makes sense. It's part of a plan, isn't it? A plan I couldn't see? Sidious always had a plan…"
- ―Yupe Tashu and Windom Traducier
While safely aboard the Ravager, Fleet Admiral Rax watched the Liberation Day proceedings on the HoloNet. Since the New Republic had taken over the HoloNet, they were using it to broadcast the Liberation Day festivities with the hope of enticing more worlds to join the New Republic. As the New Republic officials shepherded the liberated prisoners and their families onto a stage, Rax ordered Grand Moff Randd to prepare the Imperial fleets to travel to a series of coordinates, which turned out to be the planet Jakku. Rax also convened a meeting of the Shadow Council.
Meanwhile on Chandrila, Rax's unwilling assassins suddenly attacked their New Republic hosts, wounding several New Republic officials including Chancellor Mothma and Commodore Agate. Several New Republic officials including General Crix Madine and Advisor Hostis Ij were rumored to have been killed. However, other key officials including Princess Leia, Antilles, and Ackbar escaped the attack since they were off-world attending to the liberation of the Wookiee homeworld of Kashyyyk.
Despite demoralizing the New Republic populace and numerous worlds considering joining them, Grand Admiral Sloane turned against Gallius Rax. After realizing that Rax's attack on Chandrila involved using mind-controlled prisoners, Sloane rejected Rax's methods as akin to the tactics of the rebels that she despised. When Sloane publicly denounced Rax and ordered her crew to return with her to arrest him, Adea attacked the Grand Admiral and tried to assassinate her. However, Sloane managed to kill her and escaped into hyperspace on a stolen cargo freighter. She subsequently teamed up with the former Ashmead's Lock prisoner Brentin to hunt down and kill Rax. While during the attack, Traducier freed Tashu from prison and told him that Gallius Rax was Emperor and that he served the late Emperor Sheev Palpatine. Tashu praised Sidious for having a plan before making his escape.
While traveling through hyperspace, Gallius Rax informed the Shadow Council that Sloane had been lost on Chandrila. However, he vowed that the Empire would make every effort to get her back from the clutches of the New Republic. In the Grand Admiral's absence, Rax offered to serve as the Counselor to the Empire until Sloane returned to them, saying he himself wasn't worthy of the title of Grand Admiral or Emperor. When Borrum responded that Counselor was an unprecedented title, Rax reassured him that his position was only temporary. Borrum then asked why they were traveling to the barren world of Jakku, and Rax responded that he would test the mettle of his new armada on that planet away from the prying eyes of the New Republic. In secret, Rax planned to use the upcoming showdown to eliminate the other Council members with the exception of Brendol Hux, who was essential to his plans.
- "… No more children will be swept aside by your hand. No more will be made to serve the anchorites."
"I told you all of life was suffering. And for you, the suffering… beginning. You are hunted, Galli. All your plans will… unravel …"
- ―Gallius Rax and Kolob
Under Counselor Rax's orders, the Imperial fleets set up orbit above Jakku. Rax also established a base in the planet's Sinking Fields region. For several months, Rax and his forces waited for the New Republic to attack Jakku. While Rax claimed that the Imperial exodus to Jakku was meant to test the mettle of the Imperial forces, the harsh and barren conditions exacted a heavy toll on the physical and mental well-being of the Imperial officers and stormtroopers stationed there. Per Rax's orders, training grew more violent and the Imperial forces were refashioned into a guerrilla force. Meanwhile, dissenters such as the stormtrooper RK-242 who questioned the Imperial presence on Jakku were beaten up and brutalized by their own comrades.
Rax also struck a deal with the local Hutt crime lady Niima to guard the pass to the Observatory and to kidnap local children from the planet's orphanages and small villagers. With the help of Brendol Hux, these children were fashioned into a force of fearsome child soldiers who lived to serve Rax's bidding. Unknown to Rax, his adversary Rae Sloane had survived and traveled to Jakku with the former rebel operative Brentin Lore Wexley. Both sought revenge against Rax for the wrongs he had inflicted on them. After meeting Rax's former master Kolob, the two discovered that he was once called Galli and that Rax had returned to Plaintive Hand.
After the New Republic sent ships and a probe droid into Jakku's space, Rax reassured his Shadow Council that the final battle was coming. When General Borrum expressed concerns that his men were growing weary of remaining on alert for so long, Grand Moff Randd countered that the deadlock in the New Republic would allow the Empire more time to amass forces. When the propagandist Ferric Obdur tried to raise the matter of the messaging of the Imperial occupation, Rax shushed him. After marking Obdur for death, Rax went to settle scores with his former master Kolob, whom he despised for his harsh and austere upbringing.
Kolob had already been captured and brought to Rax's headquarters. During the meeting, Gallius identified himself as the boy known as Galli and admitted that he was behind the recent kidnappings of children on Jakku. When Kolob chastised his former ward for being wild and rebellious, Rax countered that he had found another purpose and destiny away from Kolob's "foolish" faith. Rax was joined by Palpatine's former adviser Yupe Tashu, who was an adherent of the Sith. Rax then stabbed Kolob to death as a sacrifice to the dark side. Before his death, Kolob warned Rax that he was being hunted and that his plans would unravel.
Later, Rax visited the underlevels beneath his base where he was greeted by an advanced Sentinel droid, which had been programmed with Palpatine's personality and knowledge. The Sentinel displayed holographic footage of Niima and her convoy traveling towards the Observatory. One of the cameras caught an image of his old adversary Rae Sloane traveling with Niima's convoy. Sloane and Brentin had struck a deal with Niima to take them to the Observatory, which they believed was Rax's weapons facility. After the sentinel anticipated that the intruders would arrive at the Observatory within three days, Rax ordered his turbolaser cannons to bombard the convoy before they arrived.
In addition, Rax gave orders for Grand Vizier Mas Amedda to be kept under house arrest. The soldiers stationed at the Imperial Palace were loyal to Rax and forced Amedda to give propaganda broadcasts. Rax also penned a handwritten letter to Amedda informing the Grand Vizier that he had brought the Empire to Jakku. Rax also warned Amedda that he was under house arrest and that any attempt to escape would be punished. Following a failed escape attempt, Amedda was rescued by the unlikeliest source: Anklebiter Brigade, a group of rebel child resistance fighters. The Anklebiters had initially come to kill Amedda but agreed to help him escape the Imperial Palace in order to initiate surrender talks with Chancellor Mon Mothma.
Reunion with Sloane
- "It's come to this, then? Death on a dead world. You're driven us all to the edge of the galaxy. To the edge of everything."
"As I say: There is a purpose."
- ―Rae Sloane and Gallius Rax
After the Observatory's cannons had bombarded Niima's convoy, Rax learned from his security cams that Sloane and Brentin were hiding behind the eastern pillar while Niima and her surviving slaves were hiding in the shadow of the western plateau. Later that night, Rax summoned Brendol Hux for a private meeting and asked if his new child soldier recruits were ready. He also warned Hux that failure would be met by banishment into Jakku's deserts. Sufficiently cowered, Hux reassured Rax that his recruits were ready to serve the Counselor's commands.
The following day, Rax brought three Lambda-class shuttles to the Plaintive Hand and captured Sloane and Brentin. Following a brief exchange, Sloane vowed that she would retake the Empire. However, Rax retorted that the Empire had moved on without her. When she asked why Rax had brought the Empire to this dead place, Rax replied that the Empire had a destiny here. At that point, Rax and his stormtroopers were attacked by an enraged Niima, who demanded to know what he was hiding inside the Observatory. Despite her injuries, she manage to topple one of Rax's shuttles before being incapacitated.
Sloane then tried to reassert her authority as Grand Admiral and ordered Counselor Rax's arrest on the charge of treason. However, Rax's troops were firmly under his control. He then ordered his stormtroopers to arrest Sloane because he needed an audience for his "show." Rax was about to execute Brentin but Sloane insisted that he come with them. After learning that Brentin was one of the rebels whom he had earlier implanted with a biochip implant, Rax decided he could use him too. Rax then ordered his troops to bring the prisoners back to base as a captive audience for his "show." As Sloane passed him, she spat on Rax's white uniform. Unperturbed, Rax sarcastically welcomed her to Jakku.
Upon arriving back at the hangar of the main Imperial base, Rax displayed his new contingent of child soldiers to Sloane and Brentin. These child soldiers had been fashioned by Hux into ruthless killers under Rax's orders. Rax ordered his stormtroopers to lay down their blasters. After signaling for the lights to be switched off, Rax's child soldiers attacked and killed the stormtroopers with their knives and blasters. Rax announced that his child soldiers were the future of his Empire and told them that they would be witnesses for the final battle of the "Old Empire."
Showdown on Jakku
- "Do you see how the troopers have marked their armor? Painted it. Carved it up. Burned it with hot metal. They have transcended mere service. They are not just soldiers. They are something altogether more tribal, more ferocious, less human, all animal. But I still don't know that it's enough."
- ―Galliux Rax, to Rae Sloane and Brentin Lore Wexley
After Hux and the child soldiers had secured Sloane and Brentin in a tent above the command center, Rax then delivered a rousing speech to his Shadow Council and the assembled Imperial military forces. Besides Sloane, the only member missing was the propagandist Ferric Obdur, who had been assassinated by Rax's child soldiers. In his speech, Rax likened the New Republic to a tumor on a healthy body and urged his forces to show no mercy to their enemies. He claimed that the Battle of Jakku would determine the future of the galaxy. Shortly later, the New Republic fleet entered Jakku's space and the final battle of the "Old Empire" commenced.
Following the speech, Rax left with Brendol Hux, his son Armitage, Yupe Tashu, and the child soldiers for the Observatory to fulfill the final stage of the Contingency. Rax now planned to use the borehole beneath the Observatory to detonate the planet Jakku; destroying the planet, the "Old Empire" and the New Republic forces. While the late Emperor had called for the total destruction of the Empire, Rax had secretly arranged for himself and a select group of Imperials to depart for the Unknown Regions, where the Emperor's flagship Eclipse awaited them. Rax also left his prisoners Sloane and Brentin behind, having deemed that they had fulfilled their usefulness to him.
As part of the Contingency, Rax did not assume command during the Battle of Jakku, instead, delegating the work to the remaining members of his Shadow Council: Grand Moff Randd and General Borrum. Due to Rax' harsh training regimen and rousing speech, the Imperial forces on the ground and space above Jakku put up a fierce resistance against the New Republic. In space, the Imperial fleet under the command of Grand Moff Randd formed a tight defensive formation around the Super Star Destroyer Ravager. The Imperial ships would open their ranks up from time to time to allow the Ravager to bombard the New Republic ships. On the ground, General Borrum's troops used guerrilla tactics to harry the New Republic ground forces.
Rax's efforts to destroy the "Old Empire" were aided by the ingenious and flexible tactics of his New Republic opponents. Ackbar and Agate managed to find a gap in the Imperial naval defenses after Captain Groff of the Star Destroyer Punishment rammed his ship into a New Republic warship. This gap allowed Commodore Agate's Starhawk-class battleship Concord to attack the Ravager and use its powerful tractor beam to drag the Imperial command ship down to Jakku's surface. The destruction of the Ravager effectively turned the tide of the battle in the New Republic's favor.
Despite his careful planning, Rax's plans began to unravel as Kolob had prophesied. Sloane managed to break free with the help of Brentin Wexley. At the urging of Sloane, these two adversaries then joined forces with the New Republic operative Norra Wexley (Brentin's wife) and the modified B1-series battle droid Mister Bones to hunt down Rax. They traveled to the Observatory where Sloane intended to confront and kill him for his actions.
Last stand on Jakku
- "I don't serve the Emperor. I serve the Empire."
"Your Empire is gone. I have killed it. You have friends. You aren't alone. Let's call them to us, shall we?"
- ―Rae Sloane and Gallius Rax
Gallius Rax and his entourage traveled in a transport to the Jakku Observatory in the Plaintive Hand. During the journey, Rax took the opportunity to befriend Brendol's young son Armitage, who had been mistreated by his father. Rax confided that he would be taking them to the Unknown Regions where they would rebuild the Empire. Though Armitage was younger than Rax's child soldiers, Rax made the young boy their commander and ordered them to obey his every command. As a test demonstration, the young Armitage ordered one of the boys to strike his companion.
Rax's transport eventually reached the Observatory. Using the sentinel droid that piloted the transport, Rax ordered the Observatory's turbolasers and sentinel droid defenses to power down. He also summoned an automated landing dome which stored a replica of the Emperor's yacht Imperialis. Before entering the Observatory, Rax instructed Brendol to take his son and the children aboard the yacht while he and Tashu went inside the underground complex to activate the Contingency. Rax promised to join Brendol as soon as he had finished his remaining business on Jakku.
After entering the Observatory, Rax and Tashu made their way into a hallway that was lined with various artifacts from the old Sith Empire. This hallway led to a deep borehole which led to Jakku's core. As the Battle of Jakku raged above, Rax and Tashu initiated a dark side ritual. After Tashu donned the various Sith artifacts, the two began chanting. After the ritual, the two walked along a platform across the well. Completing the Contingency, Rax threw Tashu to his death down the well. Tashu's fall ignited an explosive chain reaction which consumed him and the Sith relics he was wearing. Before Rax could return to the Imperialis, he heard several voices including Sloane entering the Observatory.
Still determined to settle scores with Rax, Sloane confronted him in the hallway leading to the borehole. Rax mocked Sloane for not passing his final test. Determined to end Rax once and for all, Sloane attacked him, punching him in the nose. While Sloane was an experienced fighter, Rax was also skilled at unarmed combat and soon gained the upper hand over Sloane. After pinning her to the ground, Rax proceeded to break several of the fingers on Sloane's left hand while humming the Cantata of Cora Vessora. Rax wanted to use Sloane's screams to attract her remaining companions, Norra and Brentin.
As expected, Norra and Brentin arrived to aid their former enemy Sloane. Rax attacked Norra and managed to grab her blaster. However, Brentin rammed himself into Rax. Rax then struggled with Brentin and managed to kill Norra's husband by shooting him in the chest. Rax then tried to finish off Norra but she fought back. Following a fierce struggle, Norra managed to recover the blaster and wounded Rax by shooting him in the shoulder. Wounded, Rax turned to flee but Sloane caught up with him. Armed with Norra's blaster, Sloane incapacitated Rax by shooting him in the right leg and his remaining shoulder. She then shot him in the stomach several times, fatally wounding the Counselor.
With his dying breath, Rax told Sloane that she now served the Contingency. He instructed Sloane to travel aboard the Imperialis with Hux and the others to the Unknown Regions. He also told her about the data spike in the computer which contained the hyperspace codes needed to rendezvous with the Emperor's Super Star Destroyer Eclipse. Appealing to her patriotism, Rax told her to leave Jakku in order to find a new demesne and start the game again. As he died, Rax accepted that he would always be the outcast. Even though they were enemies, Sloane honored Rax's dying request and fled into the Unknown Regions with Hux and the child soldiers to rebuild the Empire.
- "Go to it [the Eclipse]. Leave this place. Find a new demesne. Start the game over. Undeserving. I am undeserving. Just a skittermouse, not a vworkka. Outcast, always the outcast. Shah-tezh. Cora Vessora. Undeserved…"
- ―Gallius Rax's final words, spoken to Rae Sloane
Gallius Rax's actions following the Battle of Endor helped to hasten the collapse of the "Old Empire." Despite the Empire's catastrophic defeat on Jakku, Sloane managed to foil Rax's attempt to destroy Jakku and the belligerent forces by sealing the borehole, stopping the reaction from heating the mantle and cracking the planet. While most people in the galaxy remembered the Battle of Jakku as a decisive victory for the New Republic, most forgot that that battle had been part of Palpatine's contingency plan to destroy the Empire following his death. While the New Republic signed the Galactic Concordance with the defeated Empire and turned its attention to reshaping the galactic order, Sloane and what remained of Palpatine regime meanwhile fled into the Unknown Regions to follow Rax's intended vision of forging a renewed Empire. These Imperial castoffs eventually established a new regime in the Unknown Regions called the First Order, which was determined to reclaim the galaxy from the New Republic. By 34 ABY, admirals and generals who survived the Empire's implosion and the wrath of the New Republic, had envisioned Rax leading them, rather than Snoke, who rose to become the First Order's Supreme Leader.
While officially Counselor to the Empire and in command of the largest Imperial remnant faction, future generations regarded him as merely another warlord.
Personality and traits
- "Look at you. A little savage who learned to sing. Knowing what fork to use makes you no less of a feral child. Here you are, come to show me how much you've grown, and yet I see you've grown not a whit."
- ―Kolob, to Gallius Rax
The man who became Gallius Rax was once an orphaned boy named Galli, who was a servant to Anchorite Kolob. Growing up on the barren and desolate world of Jakku, Galli longed to escape off-world for greener worlds. Seeking to escape an austere life of servitude and religiosity, Galli stowed aboard a ship that belonged to Emperor Sheev Palpatine. The Emperor offered him an education and better life in return for guarding a secret excavation site on Jakku. After joining the Empire, Galli adopted the persona of Gallius Rax. Due to his military education, Rax was a brilliant military strategist.
Due to his personal connection to the Emperor, Rax rose rapidly through the ranks of the Imperial Navy to become a Fleet Admiral. In return for giving him a better life, Rax was devoted to serving his benefactor. Rax was prepared to carry out Palpatine's Contingency plan to destroy the Galactic Empire following the Emperor's death. As part of the Contingency, Rax was willing to sacrifice many lives and resources to eliminate those whom he deemed as rivals including Grand Moff Valco Pandion, Commander Valent, and General Jylia Shale. Rax's devotion to the Contingency led to the Empire's catastrophic defeat during the Battle of Jakku.
Gallius Rax was known to have a strong appreciation for classical music, enjoying such pieces as the Sestina of Imperator Vex and The Cantata of Cora Vessora. Rax was also highly cultured, appreciated art, music, and kept an aquarium full of exotic fish. However, he was ruthless towards other people including his foes and allies. As part of a long-term contingency plan, Rax was willing to forcibly insert inorganic bio-chips into the bodies of rebel prisoners held at Ashmead's Lock. These prisoners were later used in an ingenious plot to assassinate the New Republic political and military leadership on Chandrila, capital of the New Republic. Rax hoped to demoralize the New Republic while at the same time provoking a fight with the rival government, the successor to the Rebel Alliance.
Gallius Rax recognized that the New Republic held a political and military advantage over the Empire. In response, Rax set in stage a long-term plan to revitalize the Empire by instituting a breeding program, creating a brain trust called the Shadow Council, and promoting the propaganda narrative that the Empire was the underdog. In public, Rax cultivated the image of a selfless adviser who was dedicated to promoting the survival of the Empire. However, this public image concealed his ambition to rule the Empire from behind the scenes. While Rax presented himself as a charismatic adviser, he was known to be evasive and secretive; a trait that put him at odds with Grand Admiral Rae Sloane.
Rax's ambitions led him to engineer a plot to eliminate Grand Admiral Sloane by sending her on a faux diplomatic mission to Chandrila which coincided with the attack on Chandrila. While Rax had wanted to test the loyalty and resolve of the Grand Admiral, this move only turned Sloane against him. In her absence, Rax took the opportunity to seize leadership of the Shadow Council as Counselor to the Empire.
Rax bore a deep grudge towards Kolob and the Anchorites due to his harsh upbringing. He personally killed Kolob and created a unit of child assassins willing to carry out his bidding. As Counselor to the Empire, Rax brought the Empire to Jakku. While Rax claimed that he wanted to toughen the mettle of his Imperial forces, he was secretly fulfilling the Emperor's Contingency plan to destroy the Empire. Rax also secretly subverted the Contingency to ensure that he and a select number of Imperials could flee to the Unknown Regions in order to restart the Empire. Rax's actions ultimately cost the lives of many of his Imperial officers and soldiers. Rax also had a cruel and sadistic streak as shown when he ordered his child soldiers to kill several stormtroopers.
After the Battle of Endor, Rax was referred to as the Empire's weapon, due to his incredible mind. He was also highly revered in the Empire, exemplified at the emergency summit at Akiva, when Grand Moff Pandion asked Rae Sloane if the Imperial Fleet Admiral was alive, to which Sloane lied, only saying that Rax was one of the best within the Empire. After the New Republic attacked Akiva, Sloane revealed to Pandion that Rax was alive, which allowed her to kill the moff due to his shock.
Skills and abilities
Due to his harsh upbringing, Gallius Rax was a fierce fighter who could take on even seasoned combatants like Grand Admiral Sloane, who was a seasoned recreational boxer. He also knew how to wield a blaster. Rax used dirty tactics in unarmed combat and broke several of Sloane's fingers.
While Gallius Rax wore the attire of a Fleet Admiral in public, he wore a long crimson robe in private. As Counselor to the Empire, Rax wore a white uniform reminiscent of the Grand Admiral uniform and a long scarlet cape.
Behind the scenes
Gallius Rax first appeared as an unidentified Fleet Admiral in Chuck Wendig's 2015 novel Aftermath. His role and backstory was expanded in 2016 novel Aftermath: Life Debt and the 2017 novel Aftermath: Empire's End.
- Star Wars Battlefront II (Mentioned only)
- Aftermath (First appearance, simultaneous with Aftermath audiobook)
- Aftermath audiobook (First appearance, simultaneous with Aftermath)
- Aftermath: Life Debt (First identified as Gallius Rax, simultaneous with Aftermath: Life Debt audiobook)
- Aftermath: Life Debt audiobook (First identified as Gallius Rax, simultaneous with Aftermath: Life Debt)
- Aftermath: Empire's End
- Aftermath: Empire's End audiobook
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi: Expanded Edition (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi: Expanded Edition audiobook (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: On the Front Lines
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know, Updated and Expanded
- Star Wars: Women of the Galaxy
- Star Wars Helmet Collection 71 (Databank A-Z: Zam Wesell–Wexley)
- Ultimate Star Wars, New Edition
- Star Wars: The Galactic Explorer's Guide
- Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Visual Dictionary
- The Star Wars Book
- "The Final Order and the Battle of Exegol" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
- "The First Order" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
- "Emperor Palpatine" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
- "The Battle of Endor and the Fall of the Empire" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
Notes and references
- Aftermath: Life Debt
- According to Aftermath: Life Debt, Rax's first journey out of Jakku happened when he was 12 years old. Aftermath: Empire's End then confirmed that 10 years after that, Rax left Jakku for good. Since that event took place 25 years before the book's present, which is set in 5 ABY, Rax must have been born in or around 42 BBY.
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
- Aftermath: Empire's End
- Gallius Rax's prelude and epilogue chapters in Aftermath: Life Debt are set roughly three decades before the Battle of Jakku, which according to Star Wars: Galactic Atlas takes place in 5 ABY.
- Gallius Rax's flashback interlude chapter in Part 5 of Aftermath: Empire's End is set twenty-five years before the Battle of Jakku, which occurs in 5 ABY
- "The Levers of Power"—The Rise of the Empire
- Star Wars Battlefront II
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi: Expanded Edition
- Star Wars: The Galactic Explorer's Guide