- "The Inquisitorius. A project of mine, long planned. Slaves to the light side once, now awake. Hunters, one and all."
"What do they hunt?"
"Why, Jedi, of course."
- ―Darth Sidious and Darth Vader
The Inquisitorius, also known as the Inquisitorius Program and the Order of Inquisitors, was an organization of Force-sensitive agents who worked for the Galactic Empire. Members of the Inquisitorius were known as Imperial Inquisitors, Inquisitors, Red Blades, Mystics by Imperial officers, and sometimes even Jedi hunters. They were tasked with hunting down the remaining Jedi who had survived Order 66 at the end of the Clone Wars. In the years leading up to the Battle of Yavin, the Inquisitors came into conflict with the Spectres, a rebel cell that included the Jedi Purge survivor Kanan Jarrus and his Padawan, Ezra Bridger. Their pursuit of the Spectres also brought them into contact with another Jedi Purge survivor, the former Jedi Ahsoka Tano, as well as the former Sith Lord Darth Maul, who sought revenge against the Sith for casting him out and killing his brother and mother.
Serving the SithEdit
When the Clone Wars ended, Supreme Chancellor Sheev Palpatine formed the Galactic Empire and declared the Jedi Order its enemy. Using Jedi Master Mace Windu's attempt to have him arrested as justification, the new Emperor activated Order 66 which had been hardwired into every single one of the Republic's clone troopers and instructed them to kill the Jedi. The majority of the Jedi were killed by the clones but several managed to escape, especially after Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi sent out a distress signal from the Jedi Temple, warning the survivors off. As such, several Jedi had survived the initial purge and gone into hiding. Fearing the threat the surviving Jedi posed to his rule, Palpatine created the Inquisitors to track down and eliminate the last remaining Jedi.
The Inquisitors were all former Jedi that had turned to the dark side in someway or another, with the Grand Inquisitor having served as a Jedi Temple Guard and the Tenth Brother being the former Jedi Master Prosset Dibs. The Emperor's apprentice Darth Vader soon discovered the program and was put in charge of them. Vader trained the Inquisitors in the ways of the dark side of the Force. As part of their training, a number of Inquisitors had parts of their body severed by Vader's lightsaber so that they would not forget the lesson of loss. After Vader cut off Sixth Brother's left lower arm, the Grand Inquisitor began questioning Vader's training techniques. Vader claimed that he was intending to have the Inquisitors to abandon their tendency to fight defensively as former Jedi and adopt more offensive moves.
Hunting the JediEdit
Following the formation of the Empire, the Grand Inquisitor worked with Darth Vader on locating the Jedi Order's Chief Librarian, Jocasta Nu. During his research in the Archives, the Grand Inquisitor was confronted by Nu after he openly insulted the knowledge he was reading. At first the Grand Inquisitor planned to kill Nu but when he defeated her in combat, he was prevented from killing her by Lord Vader. As Vader and the Grand Inquisitor argued, Nu was able to make her escape. However, Vader was able to pursue Nu and killed her himself without the Grand Inquisitor's help.
Sometime later, the Ninth Sister accompanied Vader to investigate reports of a possible Jedi in a cantina on Cabarria. The reports turned out to be false and Vader was attacked by three bounty hunters. The Ninth Sister refused to help Vader and the when he overpowered the bounty hunters, they retreated and stole the Ninth Sister's speeder at gun point. Vader chased and captured them, questioning them of who they were hired by. Vader found out that the culprit had come from the top of the Imperial ranks and the Ninth Sister flew him back to Coruscant. However, when arriving at Coruscant their communications were deliberately jammed, stopping the Ninth Sister from sending their clearance codes. This caused the Coruscant defenses to attack them and Vader pushed the Ninth Sister of the pilot chair to take control of the ship. They subsequently crashed onto Coruscant and Vader left the Ninth Sister with the ship.
Mission to Mon CalaEdit
About one year after the rise of the Empire, Palpatine suspected a Jedi of influencing the deteriorating negotiations on Mon Cala. He sent Vader and three Inquisitors to investigate this, accompanied by a squad of elite clone Purge Troopers. Upon their arrival, the Imperial Ambassador Telvar was assassinated and his superior, Moff Tarkin, sent down his forces to invade Mon Cala. Vader and the Inquisitors Sixth Brother, Ninth Sister and Tenth Brother fought at Dac City and captured the king, Lee-Char. The Ninth Sister interrogated Lee-Char for the location of the Jedi but they were soon swept away by large waves generated by some of Mon Cala's large creatures.
The three Inquisitors survived the cataclysm and picked up Vader on an Imperial submarine. The Ninth Sister revealed to Vader that she had obtained the location of the Jedi and they made for the place. Upon arriving there, they were met by the Jedi and his six disciples. The group scattered, except for one that shot at the submarine until Vader crushed his helmet. As they chased the rest of them, another sacrificed himself to slow them down. Vader and the Inquisitors soon reached Bel City and made chase for the remaining of the group. Vader received a request from Moff Tarkin to capture Lee-Char and end the war on Mon Cala. Vader agreed and left the Inquisitors and their squad of clones to find the Jedi.
The Inquisitors soon found the Jedi and his last two disciples. The Sixth Brother cut down one of the disciples and they surrounded the other two. The Jedi then stepped forward and faced them, revealing their names from when they were Jedi. The Ninth Sister confronted the Jedi, identifying him as a Padawan named Ferren Barr. Barr ignored her and told them that they were still truly Jedi, acknowledging the clones and their role in Order 66. Barr used the Force to take the helmets off the Purge troopers and saw that they were newer clones that were commissioned after Order 66. Knowing they had not had their inhibitor chips activated, he used a mind trick on them, saying "execute Order 66".
The trick worked and the Purge troopers turned on their three superiors. They quickly succeeded in gunning down the Tenth Brother, although the Sixth Brother and Ninth Sister were able to deflect their shots. Barr and his last disciple, Verla, then leaped over the battle and escaped. Keen to intercept them, the Sixth Brother and Ninth Sister used their combined powers to Force push the troopers to the side. However, the Sixth Brother betrayed Ninth Sister, cutting her leg off and leaving her to fend off the last of the troopers alone. After his escape, the Sixth Brother took a boat away with three stormtroopers.
Search for Ahsoka TanoEdit
Shortly after the mission to Mon Cala, the Sixth Brother was searching for a possible Force-sensitive child on Thabeska. However, he later abandoned this task after receiving word that a Force-sensitive old enough to have received Jedi training was hiding in the Outer Rim, and set out to hunt the individual in question, hoping to earn a promotion. The supposed Jedi was in fact former Padawan Ahsoka Tano, who had left the Jedi Order before the end of the Clone Wars after being wrongfully accused of treason. Tano had since built up a resistance group on the moon of Raada. The Sixth Brother went to Raada where he began investigating. He traveled to the mountains and found the resistance Tano had set up, who were hiding in the caves. The resistance surrounded the Sixth Brother but he revealed his lightsaber, throwing it at the fighters. The lightsaber flew in an arc, killing all but one of the fighters.
The Sixth Brother then took the last fighter away, who he identified as Kaeden Larte, who had become close to Tano. The Sixth Brother used Kaeden to lay a trap for Tano and she revealed herself to him. The Sixth Brother then battled her, but Tano was able to identify his offensive fighting style and took advantage of it. Tano then reached out to his lightsaber's kyber crystals and they detonated the lightsaber, killing the Sixth Brother. Tano took his lightsaber crystals and fled the system with the rest of the citizens from Raada's sole settlement. Shortly afterwards, the Grand Inquisitor arrived and, unaware of Tano's identity, decided to hunt her himself, but not before informing Vader.
Hunt for Eeth KothEdit
- "Inquisitors--A woman and an infant escaped. Bring me the child."
"And the woman, Lord Vader?"
- ―Darth Vader and the Fifth Brother
Sometime after Vader's hunt on Chandar's Folly, he took three Inquisitors to a planet to hunt down the surviving Jedi known as Eeth Koth. Vader entered his house and interrupted Koth as his daughter had only just been born. Koth attempted to negotiate his way out of the situation but Vader made it clear he wasn't compliant and Koth attacked him, telling his wife, Mira, to run with his newborn daughter. The two took the fight outside and Vader threw him across the ground and told his Inquisitors to find the newborn and capture it. The Fifth Brother asked of what they should do about the mother and Vader informed him that she was irrelevant.
The three Inquisitors made haste into the city and the Fifth Brother suggested they split up. The other two agreed and they began searching the city. The female Inquisitor decided to reach out into the Force to see if the Infant made any ripples, as it was Force-sensitive. Her attempt was successful and she managed to stop Mira and her child before they could reach her father's shuttle. Mira begged her to let her go, appealing to her woman to woman. The female Inquisitor told her to go and she ran into the shuttle. The Fifth Brother then arrived and was shocked of what she had just done. The Twi'lek Inquisitor arrived as well and told her that Vader would not take this lightly. However, the female Inquisitor wasn't finished yet and as the shuttle ascended, she used the Force to pull the baby from her mother's arms.
The Twi'lek Inquisitor asked the female Inquisitor why she had to do it the way she did. She explained that since Mira had appealed to her woman to woman, she had decided to let her trust her before snatching her baby and thus her soul, as she would never trust another woman, and likely another person, again. The three Inquisitors returned to Vader, who was gradually beating Koth in the duel. Koth saw the baby in the female Inquisitor's hands and in his shock, Vader cut him down. The group returned to the Coruscant tower on their Zeta-class shuttle and gave the baby to a pair of nursemaids. Vader asked the Grand Inquisitor of their next target. The Grand Inquisitor brought Vader to see the list of the final confirmed Jedi survivors. There, he explained to Vader that they had hidden themselves well and he concluded that they must wait until one of them made a mistake in order to find them.
- "What are we looking for, Lord Vader?"
"Two Jedi. Male and female. They will attack us. It is only a matter of time. Be wary. They are cunning. Their direction of attack may be…unorthodox."
- ―Two Imperial shock troopers, and Darth Vader
The Fifth Brother notified Vader of the female Inquisitor's actions during their hunt and Vader suspected her to be a traitor, especially as he suspected her and the Twi'lek Inquisitor of having feelings for each other. Later on, the female Inquisitor and the Twi'lek Inquisitor were toasting to Eeth Koth's death with a drink that came from the planet where they had found him. The female Inquisitor then brought up Vader and asked of what he would do when all the Jedi were finally dead. The Twi'lek Inquisitor told her he would find his way around it, saying he would always find something to kill. At that moment, Vader interrupted their conversation, igniting his lightsaber. The Grand Inquisitor asked if this was a test, to which Vader coldly denied. Vader attempted to kill the female Inquisitor, but the Twi'lek Inquisitor halted him with his lightsaber and Vader confirmed his suspicions that the two had an attachment. The female Inquisitor ran away and Vader threw the other into the wall. He asked Vader why he attacked the female Inquisitor and he told the Twi'lek that it didn't matter because he had done it too. The Twi'lek Inquisitor ran and joined the female Inquisitor as she escaped the Coruscant Tower.
Vader made chase for the two rogue Inquisitors and took a speeder into Coruscant. The pair planned on killing Vader in order for them to be free from his presence in the galaxy. They therefore attacked Vader's speeder and the Sith lord jumped to other speeders as they cut those down as well with their lightsabers. The pair then resorted to throwing speeders at the Sith but he either threw them back or cut them down. However, the two Inquisitors eventually managed to topple a statue onto Vader and he fell onto a balcony, temporarily immobilized. They attempted to finish him off but he used the force to freeze them in mid air. The two Inquisitors turned to one another to spill out their last words and Vader made their lightsabers activate to stab the pair and kill them at the same time. Sidious later asked Vader why he thought the two were traitors and he explained to his master of their attachment and how the female Inquisitor briefly let Eeth Koth's child escape. Nonetheless, the Emperor was displeased with Vader's rampage that killed a Gran senator who was important to his plans and had the Inquisitorius relocated offworld.
Hunt in the Anoat SectorEdit
An Inquisitor was sent by the Empire to hunt a small group of surviving Jedi who had recently been discovered in a Jedi shrine on Anoat. The Inquisitor went there to find the Jedi Mususiel, who stayed to save the others. The Inquisitor killed her and tracked the others to Mataou, where the agent pursued one of the others, named Zubain Ankonori, and slew him. The last two Jedi, Nuhj and Khandra, fled to Embertown on the planet Burnin Konn, but the Inquisitor soon followed and attacked them in a chromium mine near Wickridge. The Inquisitor slew them and their belongings were stored in an Imperial vault on Nar Hypa.
A secret apprenticeEdit
Another female Inquisitor was on Dathomir when she encountered Jerserra, a Dathomirian from the Nardithi Nightsisters, a sect of the Nightsisters. She took in Jerserra as her secret apprentice and spent a number of years training her in combat and lightsaber combat. The Inquisitor hoped to use Jerserra against the other Inquisitors but Jerserra eventually came to believe her abilities outmatched her Master's, and before long, the Inquisitor was slain by Jerserra, who covered up her murder and took her lightsaber as her own.
Hunting the SpectresEdit
- "You have great potential, but perhaps it is I that might teach you, as your master never achieved the rank of Jedi Knight."
"Did he? Maybe not, but he took out the last Inquisitor. So I think I'll just stick with him."
"Yes, the death of the Grand Inquisitor was a surprise to all. Yet, it does present the rest of us with new opportunities."
- ―The Seventh Sister and Ezra Bridger
When rumors emerged of a Jedi leading a rebel cell on the planet Lothal reached the ears of the Empire, Vader sent the Grand Inquisitor to take care of the problem. After several encounters, the Grand Inquisitor succeeded in capturing Jarrus, but was defeated by the latter in a lightsaber duel during a rescue staged by the rebels and Jarrus's Padawan, Ezra Bridger. Rather than face his Master's punishment for his failure, the Grand Inquisitor killed himself.
During a skirmish with Phoenix Cell, Vader learned that Tano, who had been his apprentice during the Clone Wars, was still alive. Upon learning of this news, the Emperor ordered Vader to dispatch another Inquisitor to hunt the rebels down. The Fifth Brother and the Seventh Sister, were assigned to do so and confronted several crew members of the Ghost during a skirmish aboard an abandoned Republic medical station. Due to Garazeb Orrelios' quick-thinking, the rebels managed to escape the Inquisitors aboard the Phantom.
The death of the Grand Inquisitor was a great surprise for the other Inquisitors who saw new opportunities in hunting down the ones responsible. In addition to the Seventh Sister and the Fifth Brother, several other Inquisitors began to scour the galaxy searching for the two Jedi who had defeated their leader, all of them hoping to advance their own position within the Inquisitorius. While intercepting transmissions from Mustafar, Tano discovered that the Inquisitors' second mission was to kidnap Force-sensitive children. Meanwhile, the Seventh Sister and the Fifth Brother kidnapped the infants Alora and Pypey above the planets Chandel and on Takobo respectively. This brought them into contact with the crew of the Ghost and Ahsoka, who soundly defeated them in combat. Later, the Seventh Sister and the Fifth Brother took part in an unsuccessful attempt to capture the rebels in Garel City.
Three years before the Battle of Yavin,[source?] the Fifth Brother and the Seventh Sister spent several months pursuing Jarrus and Bridger. On one occasion, they managed to track the Jedi to the planet Oosalon where they fought with them. Despite their efforts, the Jedi managed to escape and regroup with the Spectres. Later, the Inquisitors followed Jarrus, Bridger, and Tano to the Lothal Jedi Temple. After forcing their way into the temple, the two Inquisitors were attacked by ghostly apparitions of the Jedi Temple Guards. One of these apparitions was the former Grand Inquisitor. The Fifth Brother and Seventh Sister survived the encounter and reported to Vader, who vowed to put an end to the Jedi threat.
Crossover at MalachorEdit
Some time after the events of the Lothal Jedi Temple, Kanan, Ezra and Ahsoka traveled to Malachor, following a hint given by Jedi Master Yoda. When they arrived there, the Eighth Brother, who was already there hunting an individual known as the shadow, attacked them. Soon after, Bridger became separated from the others and encountered the former Sith apprentice. As this was happening, Tano and Jarrus chased and captured the Eighth Brother, who unbeknownst to them sent a distress signal to his fellow Inquisitors, the Fifth Brother and the Seventh Sister. Maul and Bridger together entered the Sith temple on Malachor and retrieved the Sith holocron inside.
Shortly later, they found the Fifth Brother, Seventh Sister and Eighth Brother dueling Tano and Jarrus. Maul and Bridger intervened and forced the Inquisitors to retreat. While attempting to plant the Sith holocron in the Sith temple's obelisk, they encountered the Inquisitors once again. Maul began Force choking the Seventh Sister and urged Bridger to strike her down. When Bridger could not bring himself to do it, Maul then slung his lightsaber at her, killing her instantly. Maul and Bridger then found Tano and Jarrus once more fighting the Fifth and Eighth Brothers. After Tano destroyed the Fifth Brother's lightsaber, Maul made quick work of him with a fatal slash to the gut. Jarrus sliced the Eighth Brother's lightsaber. Cornered and outnumbered, the Eighth Brother attempted to escape by using his lightsaber to hover away from his three adversaries. This did not work, as the lightsaber malfunctioned in flight and sent the Eighth Brother plummeting to his death at the base of the temple below.
End of the huntEdit
- "The Jedi are extinct. Their fire has gone out of the universe. You, my friend, are all that's left of their religion."
- ―Wilhuff Tarkin, to Darth Vader
Approximately three years after the incident on Malachor, the Jedi Order was largely thought to be completely extinct by the Empire, rendering the Inquisitorius useless. Eventually, it ceased to exist entirely. At a meeting aboard the first Death Star, Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin confidently expressed his belief that the Force itself had disappeared from the galaxy, and that Vader was the only living practitioner of what he termed "the ancient religion".
The First Order, the government that rose from the ashes of the Empire following its fall after the New Republic's victory at the Battle of Jakku and the subsequent signing of the Galactic Concordance, used interrogation chairs, based on those used by the Inquisitorius, to extract information from their prisoners.
Status and commandEdit
Although the exact number of Inquisitors was kept secret, there may have been as many as twelve. Inquisitors utilized a Zeta-class shuttle, the Infernum in 18 BBY, and also commanded Purge Troopers, which were elite death squads of clone troopers. Due to the nature of their mission, Inquisitors had the power to commandeer any required Imperial Military forces, and all officers were to obey their orders. Any officer who came into contact with Force-sensitive beings was to immediately contact an Inquisitor to investigate the situation. Also, some Imperial officers disliked the interference of Inquisitors with some, such as Admiral Kassius Konstantine, dismissing them as "mystics." When the Inquisitors became part of the Inquisitorius, they left behind their former names and took up new names, with Brother or Sister denoting their sexes.
- Tenth Brother: "Smells like fish."
- Ninth Sister: "That's just Sixth Brother."
- Tenth Brother: "More like fish, then."
- Sixth Brother: "Hilarious."
- ―The Tenth Brother and Ninth Sister make fun of Sixth Brother[src]
The Inquisitors in the Inquisitorius held a mutual relationship with each other. Many had to work together on occasions where they were up against bigger threats. The female Inquisitor and the Twi'lek Inquisitor had a mutual friendship and always toasted to the death of every Jedi they hunted with a drink made on the planet of which they found them. However, being users of the dark side of the Force, the Inquisitors became power hungry and a sense of competition grew between them. Upon arriving at Mon Cala, the Sixth Brother was insulted by his two subordinates, the Ninth Sister and Tenth Brother.
Later on, the three aforementioned Inquisitors were caught up in a skirmish in Bel City and the Tenth Brother was killed. The other two helped each other clear a path but then the Sixth Brother betrayed the Ninth Sister, cutting off her leg and leaving her to the remainder of the enemy. The Sixth Brother later abandoned one of his missions to hunt a Jedi, hoping to obtain himself a promotion. A female inquisitor even tried training her own apprentice to use against the other Inquisitors before she was betrayed and killed by the Dathomirian. During his search for the Spectres, the Seventh Sister decided to intervene with the Fifth Brother's hunt to obtain the kill for herself.
- "I've read the reports from the Inquisitorius. Vader and his monsters have done their job well. Few Jedi remain, if any."
- ―Tarkin on the Inquisitorius
The Inquisitors' primary mission was to hunt down and kill surviving Jedi who had survived the Jedi Purge. The Inquisitors' secondary mission to prevent Force-sensitive children from falling into the hands of the remaining Jedi or from using their skills against the Empire. As part of this strategy, an operation, codenamed Project Harvester, was designed to identify cadets in Imperial academies across the galaxy who met the criteria that would identify them as Force-sensitive. Should they be identified as such, the cadets would be abducted and taken into custody. If these individuals would not serve the Galactic Empire, then they would be eliminated.
As well as Imperial cadets the Project Harvester also targeted children that were identified as Force-sensitive. One of the infants they took was the daughter of the former Jedi Master Eeth Koth. The baby was given to the Nursemaids after being taken. Besides hunting Jedi, the Inquisitors were also known to pursue other Force-sensitive opponents of the Sith, like the renegade dark sider Maul. The Inquisitor's hunt saw gradual success overtime. Moff Wilhuff Tarkin read reports from the Inquisitorius and saw that their hunt had rid the galaxy of most, if not all of the surviving Jedi.
Skills and trainingEdit
- "The Inquisitors are formidable fighters. They are former Jedi!"
"And they fight like it. Defensive. Moving to attack only when there is no other choice. The Jedi taught that a battle could be counted a victory even if both parties survive. This error has infected the Inquisitors' tactics"
- ―The Grand Inquisitor and Darth Vader
Being former Jedi meant the Inquisitors were weak in the dark side of the Force. Darth Vader noticed this when he began training them. Vader aimed to cut the Inquisitors from their more defensive fighting style and make it only offensive, something Ahsoka Tano took advantage of when fighting the Sixth Brother. One of Vader's first training sessions with them included teaching them loss by expending at least one of their limbs, such as the Sixth Brother's left forearm, the Fifth Brother's right hand and the Ninth Sister's left eye.
Some of the Inquisitors had different strengths in fighting, such as the Ninth Sister, who was stronger in reading emotions, and the Tenth Brother, who had exceptional hearing and intuition in-spite of his lack of eyes. Several of them also studied the records of the Jedi Order to familiarize themselves with their enemies' fighting techniques, making them dangerous fighters. However, despite being assigned to hunt and kill Jedi and other Force-sensitive targets, the Inquisitors did not seem particularly powerful; two working in tandem were defeated by Ahsoka Tano, and three combined were unable to overcome former Sith Lord Maul. However, some Inquisitors were more successful in their hunting, with one Inquisitor being able to hunt and kill four Jedi in the Anoat sector.
- "Does yours do that?"
- ―Ezra Bridger, to Kanan Jarrus on his lightsaber after seeing an Inquisitor use a double-bladed spinning lightsaber
The Inquisitors wore black and grey bodysuits with armor and were typically equipped with red double-bladed spinning lightsabers, that were also capable of spinning in a helicopter-like motion for escape thanks to their ringed emitters. The Tenth Brother was an exception, possessing two separate lightsabers. The Inquisitors also developed interrogation chairs to assist in their questioning of suspected rebels or Jedi.
Behind the scenesEdit
The Inquisitors first appeared in the animated television series Star Wars Rebels. Inquisitors were originally created for The Star Wars Sourcebook, a 1987 sourcebook for a Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game written by Bill Slavicsek and Curtis Smith.
At Dragon Con 2018, Rebels writer Henry Gilroy explained that in choosing former Jedi to join the Inquisitorius, Palpatine kept an eye on aggressive and selfish Jedi and those who could possibly be turned into Inquisitors.
The 2018 reference book Star Wars: The Dark Side included new information surrounding the Inquisitorius. According to author Tricia Barr, the information came directly from the Lucasfilm Story Group in anticipation of forthcoming content, though she is unsure when that content will be released.
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