- "Shuttle commander, this is Commodore Faro. Hold position off target; repeat, hold position off target. I'm coming to take personal command of the boarding force."
- ―Karyn Faro
Karyn Faro was a human female who served as a commodore in the Imperial Navy. During the years she served as Thrawn's second-in-command—first aboard the Chimaera, then with the Ninety-Sixth Task Force and eventually the Seventh Fleet—she rose from a Lieutenant Commander up to the rank of a Commodore. She led the pacification of Sammun, participated in battles against the Grysks and defeated Grand Admiral Savit in a skirmish against the Third Fleet. When Faro was promoted to the rank of a commodore, she was promised the command of the Task Force 231, but Thrawn recommended against her transfer, suggesting that she was capable to lead an entire fleet. Her promotion into command of the Eleventh Fleet was accepted by the Imperial High Command the morning before her confrontation with Admiral Savit.
Faro was a good tactician in her own right, and her time under Thrawn's command honed her strategic abilities even further. She was honest and sometimes her bluntness toward superior officers came across bordering on insubordination, but she respected Thrawn and his aide Eli Vanto, recognizing the leadership qualities in both of them. Faro was confident and sometimes disagreed with Thrawn, but generally followed his orders although he sometimes accepted her alternative suggestions.
Karyn Faro was born before the beginning of the Clone Wars. At some point in her life, she once traveled on a water craft. She later attended an Academy where she participated in engineering classes and once witnessed a dissection of a nonhuman in order to learn how to find weaknesses in an opponent by using their physiology. Faro found the process to be revolting, but its tactical implications were nevertheless interesting. Later she joined the Imperial Navy and at some point had an opportunity to visit a star system where a newly commissioned Star Destroyer was being equipped and crewed. During her service Faro became suspicious of superior officers who had gained their position through political contacts rather than being good at their jobs, and as a result she often toed the line towards insubordination. Some years before the Battle of Yavin, Faro was promoted to the First Officer on board the Imperial-class Star Destroyer Chimaera.
Learning to work with Thrawn
- Donassius: "Admiral Thrawn?"
- Thrawn: "Sammun is likewise pacified. Two enemy ships were destroyed, four ships captured. A considerable array of small-arms ordnance was also captured."
- Donassius: "Without your actual presence, I'm told?"
- Faro: "The action was carried out under my direction, Admiral"
- ―Fleet Admiral Donassius, Thrawn, and Faro discussing the events on Sammun
When Chiss Commodore Thrawn was assigned to command the Chimaera, Faro was initially suspicious of her new superior and called his comments into question in front of the other officers. Soon Chiss' tactical and strategic skills however gained Faro's approval, while her own frankness, honesty and tactical abilities in turn earned Thrawn's respect.
When Thrawn was promoted to admiral Faro in turn was promoted to a commander and became the new captain of Chimaera, as part of Ninety-Sixth Task Force. Soon after the promotion the task force was ordered to suppress rebel activity on Sammun, which was part of wider spread resistance movement based around Batonn sector. Thrawn trusted Faro to lead the task force while the admiral took a captured smuggler ship and one of the light cruisers, Shyrack, to observe Admiral Durril's attack against Scrim Island on Batonn. Faro completed her mission successfully destroying two enemy ships and capturing four others along with a cache of small-arms ordnance. After the mission to Sammun the Ninety-Sixth Task Force was ordered to Batonn, where they recaptured the Scrim Island and later participated in sieging the Creekpath Mining and Refining complex.
Investigating a Force disturbance
- "Do you wish any cultural downloads sent to you? I have a high-speed transmitter ready."
- ―Faro learned to anticipate Thrawn's requests
Later, around the time of Battle of Atollon, Faro was promoted to a commodore. Along with the promotion she was promised a task force of her own, but six weeks after the promotion Faro was still serving on the Chimaera and was rather uncertain where her future would lay, especially since Thrawn's former aide, Eli Vanto, had unexpectedly disappeared from the Seventh Fleet. When Emperor Palpatine ordered Thrawn and Chimaera to assist Darth Vader in dealing with a Force disturbance centered on a planet called Batuu, Faro accompanied them leaving Commander Woldar to lead the Seventh Fleet in their absence. Faro was not happy to have passengers on her ship, because she thought passengers didn't belong on the war-ship in the first place, and especially since Vader and his special Stormtrooper unit demanded changes in the ship's daily routines. However, Faro did her best to accommodate their guests, as Thrawn called them, even if it meant confronting influential and troublesome Chief Hangar Master of the Chimaera, Xoxtin.
En-route to Batuu Chimaera encountered a mysterious obstruction on the hyperlane. After several failed attempts at returning to hyperspace Faro suggested that they might instead travel to Mokivj, where they could turn on a different hyperlane that would take them to Batuu and save fourteen or fifteen hours of travel time. Thrawn accepted Commodore's suggestion and ordered the Chimaera to set course for Mokivj despite Darth Vader's warning that the alternative route would not save more than eleven hours. Faro's daring in making the suggestion in the first place, as well as the curiosity she showed toward Thrawn's past visit to that area of space, irritated Vader but Thrawn was interested in hearing his crew's suggestions and was not insulted by Faro's inquiries. When the Chimaera reached Mokivj it turned out Vader's time estimate was more accurate than Faro's. While the ship moved across the system to the proper jump point Thrawn asked Chimaera's bridge crew to see how many moons orbited the planet. When they discovered that four of the ten moons were missing Faro participated in speculating what had happened to them.
When Chimaera finally reached Batuu Darth Vader and Thrawn headed to the planet's surface to investigate the situation while Faro was left to command the Chimaera and observe the space around the planet. Thrawn ordered her to use only passive sensors and rig the ship for stealth but permitted her to act on her own accord if something unexpected happened while he was away from the ship. When a group of enemy ships appeared out of hyperspace and headed for the same area where Thrawn and Vader had landed, Faro reported their arrival to the Grand Admiral. Against Thrawn's advice Vader ordered the First Legion transport Darkhawk to intercept and capture one of the approaching ships while Chimaera stayed out of sight, but Faro ordered four TIE/d "Defender" Multi-Role Starfighters led by Vult Skerris to assist the First Legion in their mission. That first encounter with the Grysks was only half-successful; while the Imperials seizes the target vessel and captured several warriors, the Grysk had enough time to destroy their cargo, and escape with several prisoners taken from Batuu. Faro blamed herself for the escape of Grysk ships, since she had ordered the Defenders to concentrate on helping First Legion in their boarding operation instead of chasing after the other enemy vessels.
As soon as Darkhawk and Thrawn's freighter had returned to Chimaera they turned course back to the blocked hyperlane and started searching the source of obstruction by making micro jumps back and forth from the target area until Thrawn was able to pinpoint the source of the disruption. Using only ion cannons the Chimaera was able to capture the device Grysks had used to block the hyperlane intact. While Faro was again left in charge of Chimaera Thrawn, Vader and the First Legion took a freighter to the other end of the hyperlane, where they purposefully triggered the Grysk trap and turned it against the aliens, capturing one of their ambushing ships and a number of its crew. After the Grysk ship was secure Faro was ordered to bring the Chimaera to their location.
Commodore Faro was later present in a meeting during which Thrawn and Vader decided to allow some of the Grysks escape with a ship that carried a homing beacon, but the plan was ruined by a small group of First Legion members who had decided to bunk on the ship the Grysks tried to steal, the Darkhawk. After a brief skirmish that claimed the lives of four Imperials and most of the captured Grysks, Faro, Thrawn, Vader, and Commander Kimmund of the First Legion held a meeting in the Darkhawk's cockpit. Durin the meeting Thrawn pressed Faro with questions, leading her to reach the same conclusions that the Grand Admiral had already come to. Thrawn believed the Grysks were using the old separatist factory on Mokivj as a base, where the aliens had intended to study the Darkhawk and where they had taken some of the prisoners they had escaped with from Batuu. When Chimaera reached Mokivj and discovered Grysks in the process of stealing yet another moon from the planet's orbit, Thrawn prepared to leave Faro in command of the assault against the Grysks ships while the Grand Admiral himself planned to lead a ground operation to rescue the prisoners that had been taken into the factory. Vader disagreed with the plan, insisting that Thrawn stayed aboard the Chimaera to direct the space battle while Vader and the First Legion would deal with the factory.
Battles against Grysks
- "You wondered earlier how we would defeat two ships nearly as large as ours. You now have an answer?"
"Yes, sir. We persuade them to let us take them on one at a time."
- ―Grand Admiral Thrawn and Commodore Faro
At the beginning of the battle Commodore Faro was convinced Thrawn would first send out infiltrators to spy on the Grysks, and was rather surprised when Thrawn began a full assault against the Grysks as soon as the moon the aliens were stealing had reached escape velocity and there was no longer danger of it impacting the planet. During the battle the Grysks tried to send tugs rigged with bombs to attack the Chimaera but the Star Destroyer's turbolasers destroyed them before they could cause any harm. Seeing their tug trick failing one of the Grysk ships broke away from the battle and despite TIE Defenders pursuing it the vessel managed to escape to hyperspace taking captured Chiss children with it. When Thrawn ordered Chimaera and the TIEs to destroy all Grysk ships Faro asked if they shouldn't take at least some prisoners that might lead them to where the Grysks had taken their prizes. Thrawn acknowledged her concern but did not change his orders and all the remaining Grysk ships were destroyed. When Vader returned from the planet's surface with Chiss children the Dark Lord and the First Legion had rescued, Faro found a tech who knew Sy Bisti and could communicate with the children.
When Thrawn suggested Vader should use the Force to pilot the Chimaera through hyperspace in order to find and reach the Grysks' destination before the aliens did, Faro watched from the side in silence—despite her distrust in the use of the Force in general she offered no objections to Thrawn's plan. After they had reached their destination Faro was concerned to see that the Grysk ships waiting there outnumbered the Imperials two to one, and the ship that had escaped Mokivj with the Chiss prisoners was also expected to arrive shortly after Chimaera. Thrawn and Vader planned to use one TIE Defender and the Darkhawk to ambush the ship carrying prisoners when it would arrive, and only then they would deal with the two waiting ships. When the First Legion had rescued the children from the Grysks, Thrawn sent the TIE fighters to deal with one Grysk vessel while Chimaera continued on toward the other one. Having already seen where the first Grysk ship had its gunports, Faro ordered Chimaera's gunners to target the same spots on their opponent, with full confidence that with Thrawn and Vader's leadership they could deal with anything the Grysks attempted.
- "As it happens, I did some digging on my own. The details are a bit murky, but there's no doubt that Thrawn is the one who has blocked your reassignment."
- ―Assistant Director Ronan
After Chimaera returned form Batuu, Faro expected to be called back to Coruscant for pre-command orientation for Task Force 231, but as the weeks passed and the summon didn't come she started to wonder what was going on. Finally she contacted the Imperial High Command to learn why her transfer had been delayed, but she never received an answer. A week after her message the Chimaera was called to a meeting with Grand Moff Tarkin, Director Krennic and Grand Admiral Savit to discuss the funding for Thrawn's TIE/D Defender program with Emperor Palpatine.
Thrawn returned from the meeting with Assistant Director Brierly Ronan, an official from the Stardust project, who had been sent to oversee Thrawn's next mission to clear grallocs from cargo transfer point located in Kurost sector. Commodore Faro was displeased by Ronan's presence on her ship, and also uncomfortable with Thrawn's promise to clear out the grallocs from the transfer point inside a week in exchange for continued funding for the Defenders. To her further annoyance Ronan refused to hand over data from the cargo shipments that had passed through the transfer point to the tactical analysis team of the Chimaera, demanding that only Thrawn and Faro would be allowed to study the listing, as a result Faro had to work through the information on her own. Faro's work was also disturbed by Ronan's unexpected announcement that it had been Thrawn who had somehow blocked her transfer to Task Force 231. Despite her best efforts to concentrate on the task at hand, the thought that her commanding officer apparently didn't think her to be ready to lead a task force of her own, refused to leave her completely alone.
Faro's work on cargo lists was interrupted when the Thrawn wanted the Chimaera to follow an Allanar N3 light freighter that had jumped to lightspeed from the transfer point toward another near-by star system. When the vectors of twenty-eight of the forty-one lost ships seemed to point toward other systems, Faro and Thrawn were convinced that the grallocs were wrongly blamed for the disappearances and in truth most of the ships in fact had been stolen. From the likely target system of the lost Allanar N3 they found a damaged mobile way station that had been used as a transfer point for the stolen cargoes, but finding the ship itself required Faro to have Chimaera follow the exact vector the Allanar had disappeared along. What they discovered was that the Grysks had somehow found out about the cargo transfers and had attacked the way station as well as the Allanar N3. Both Faro and Thrawn were deeply concerned to find Grysks involved in an operation almost half across the Empire from Batuu where they had previously faced the alien invaders.
Teaming up with the Chiss
- "Very good, Commodore. You're strong and confident. Mitth'raw'nuruodo chose well."
"Thank you. Though in all fairness, my appointment to the Chimaera came from the Imperial Navy High Command, not Admiral Thrawn himself."
"I wasn't referring to your position, but rather to his choice of protégée."
- ―Admiral Ar'alani and Commodore Faro about the latter's service under Thrawn
In addition to the Grysks they also discovered a Chiss Ascendancy vessel Steadfast that had been tracking a Grysk ship across the Empire and had witnessed the Grysk attack against Allanar N3. The Chiss and the Imperials joined forces to battle against Grysk warship and observation post. Faro was surprised to learn that her former shipmate Eli Vanto—a man she had assumed to be dead—was now serving as a lieutenant of the Chiss Expansionary Defense Fleet under Admiral Ar'alani's command on the Steadfast. When Faro noticed that Thrawn had failed to report the action against the Grysks and the meeting with the Chiss to Imperial High Command, she took it upon herself to file anonymous reports directly to Grand Moff Tarkin's office to cover her admiral's back in case Ronan decided to accuse him of dealing with aliens.
Faro had to hand over her office to Vanto, while the logistics expert worked through the cargo data from the Stardust shipping operation. Officially Faro was overseeing the study, but in reality she allowed Vanto to work in peace, only occasionally dropping by to see if he had made any progress. In her own study of the same data Faro had barely scratched the surface in the first hour she worked on it, but in less than two hours Vanto had shifted through it all and discovered three systems as likely sources for the stolen cargoes. While Thrawn, Faro and the Chimaera—along with Ar'alani and Chiss Navigator Vah'nya—continued to track the Grysks to their local base, Vanto and Ronan were sent to Aloxor to find proof that the cargo ships had been tampered in order to draw grallocs to them as part of the plot to steal the equipment. In order to protect the secret of Chiss navigation method that utilized the Force, Faro ordered the bridge of the Chimaera to be emptied and the crew to take positions in secondary command center while Vah'nya would take the ship to their enemies. Only Faro, Thrawn and Ar'alani remained on the bridge with the young navigator. To show Ar'alani that he trusted Faro, Grand Admiral Thrawn ordered the commodore to instruct Vah'nya in the use of Chimaera's helm console, after which Faro took over the weapons station in case they would be noticed when they arrived to the Grysk base.
Along the way to the base, Faro noticed that the ship's movements felt slightly jerky compared to the usual hyperspace jumps driven by the navigation computers, and the Chiss navigation method also made it difficult to predict when they would arrive to their destination. En route, Thrawn explained the background of their mission to Faro, and together they studied the present and likely future of their encounter with the Grysks. As Thrawn continued to trust important aspects of their mission to her, Faro started to wonder why the Grand Admiral had recommended against her transfer to a command position of her own; if Thrawn thought that she was not yet ready to command a task force, or if the Grand Admiral was simply reluctant to lose his ship's captain, or if she had done something to anger the Chiss people. But none of the reasons she came up with didn't make sense to her. When they arrived to their target system, they found two apparently defenseless Grysk ships waiting, but they suspected that the ships only served as a trap as well as were part of Grysk's communications triad.
While the Chimaera waited to receive data from TIE fighters that had been sent to scout the enemy ships, Faro had an opportunity to have a private conversation with Admiral Ar'alani during which she discovered that the Chiss' previously suspicious attitude was starting to turn into respect. When Thrawn decided to engage the Grysk vessels and launched a boarding shuttle in order to draw out the third Grysk ship they suspected to be lurking somewhere near, Faro noticed that the trick was not working so she decided to raise the stakes and declared that she would personally join the boarding party with a second shuttle. While Admiral Ar'alani directly accused Faro of insubordination against Thrawn as she had acted without orders, the Grand Admiral himself merely requested that the commodore explained her actions. Thrawn accepted Faro's reasoning; if they wanted to get the Grysk ship to reveal its location they had to offer an Imperial flag officer as part of their bait, not just a group of stormtroopers. As Faro departed from the bridge of the Chimaera she noticed that the crew, most of who had served with her for years, had gone unusually quiet.
To Faro's surprise Chimaera's stormtrooper commander, Major Carvia, was waiting for her in the shuttle, having volunteered to accompany her as well as his own troops that were now in the harm's way. Finally the bait worked and the Grysks revealed their warship's location by drawing in two of the communications triad poles that had been attached to the two conjoined ships. Chimaera's turbolasers made short work of the hidden warship, which allowed the boarding party to continue on to the two remaining ships. On board the Grysk vessels they found all sorts of traps and explosives that the stormtroopers cleared away before Faro and Carvia advanced. Finally they found a group of captive humans along with a Dashade who were guarded by six unknown aliens. Faro attempted to negotiate with the aliens, but Thrawn ordered them to be killed. Only after the deed was done Faro discovered that one of the aliens had a remote that had been set to trigger the explosives that had been packed aboard the conjoined Grysk ships. While Faro was used to facing enemies of the Empire in combat, she found the experience with the boarding party to be considerable different from the one she was used to having on the bridge of a Star Destroyer. She also found the idea that the aliens were willing to die for the Grysks unsettling.
After interrogating the humans rescued from the Grysk ship, Faro was left in charge of the Chimaera as Thrawn headed over to see if he could find information from the ships themselves. During the Grand Admiral's absence, Sensor officer Hammerly recorded a stellar occultation that alerted the crew to the presence of cloaked bombs that were converging on the conjoined ships. In order to protect the ships, Faro had the Chimaera's crew collect all the explosives packed aboard the Grysk vessels and ordered that the Star Destroyer's garbage be spread around the conjoined ships to create a particle shell that would reveal the presence of additional bombs. Thrawn then trusted the remote controlling of the relocated explosives, compressed gas tanks, and triad pole motors that were needed for the operation to Faro, who had overseen most of the preparations. The operation went off without complications despite the unexpected arrival of the Steadfast. The Chiss ship brought unwelcome news that the proof Vanto and Ronan had discovered in Aloxor had fallen into the hands of Grand Admiral Savit, meaning Thrawn would have to return to the Empire in order to recover the Assistant Director and the Brylan Ross, one of the cargo ships that had been tampered to lure the grallocs.
Commodore versus Grand Admiral
- "The point is that you are an exceptionally competent commander, and the Imperial fleet needs to recognize and reward all such people. Your performance today against Grand Admiral Savit merely underlines that ability."
"Sir, I appreciate your confidence. But we both know that the action against the Firedrake was all yours."
"Was it? Tell me, why did you deviate from my instructions regarding the impact point of the cloaked generator?"
- ―Thrawn and Faro discussing the battle against Grand Admiral Savit
After Vanto's report, Thrawn, Faro, and Ar'alani considered the situation. They knew the Grysks would soon arrive in force to sterilize the area by killing both the Imperials and the Chiss. The evidence Vanto had brought back also revealed that it had been Grand Admiral Savit—not their first suspect, Governor Haveland—who had been siphoning cargoes from the Stardust. As the time was critical on both fronts, they decided to leave the Steadfast, supported by a squadron of Thrawn's TIE/D Defenders, to battle against the Grysks, while the Chimaera would confront the traitorous Grand Admiral. Thrawn, who had carefully studied Savit's musical performances, gave Faro detailed instructions and predictions how the battle was going to be handled, stressing to the Commodore that it was essential to prevent loss of life, before taking a group of four pilots and some of his death troopers along in a shuttle to meet with Savit's flagship, the Firedrake.
Having given Thrawn a good head start Faro and the Chimaera followed, arriving to the system where they previously had found the Grysk research station to find that, as the Grand Admiral had expected, Savit had brought a total of four Star Destroyers along. Despite the heavy odds against them, Faro demanded that Savit would surrender to her for questioning. As per Thrawn's orders, Faro launched the cloaked Grysk gravity projector toward the Firedrake before sending their proof to the ships of the Third Fleet. She then deployed a squadron of her TIE fighters in a Marg Sabl maneuver as well as four TIEs that were not under power but were sent toward their target using tractor beams. When one of Savit's ships, the Misthunter, opened fire with their ion canons Faro had her gunners fire a return salvo on the same vector, colliding the shots and spending their energy into space at the safe distance from the Chimaera. The second and the third salvo from the Misthunter suffered the same fate, but when Stormbird, another of Savit's ships, also opened ion fire Chimaera's TIEs intercepted the salvo instead. As Savit saw Faro countering an ion volley after ion volley, the Grand Admiral finally ordered the Stormbird to launch TIE fighters, but they didn't fare any better after Faro diabled almost the entire squadron by detonating four proton torpedoes directly in front of them which caused severe shrapnel damage to the fighters. When two of the Stormbird's disabled TIEs headed toward the Chimaera on collision course, Faro ordered tractor beam targeting data to be sent to the Stormbird so that the Star Destroyer could pull its fighters back and thus prevent the death of the pilots.
Faro's continuous success at avoiding his attacks enraged Grand Admiral Savit, who finally ordered the Firedrake itself to fire on the Chimaera. The unpowered TIEs Faro had launched earlier were activated and ordered to damage the Firedrake's targeting sensors. Before the battle Faro had been unsure if the darkened TIEs would be able to sneak upon the Star Destroyer—she was sure that Thrawn or herself would have seen them long before they were in attack range—without Savit noticing them, but as the plot worked she thought such carelessness should have been inexcusable in a man who had risen to the rank of a grand admiral.
So far the battle had gone exactly as Thrawn had predicted it, and Faro had followed his instructions, but at the same time she had been observing Savit's tactics. Thrawn had told her to move the Chimaera to starboard, expecting Savit to turn the Firedrake to match her maneuver which would have led to the cloaked gravity projector impacting on the side of Savit's Star Destroyer. Instead of using his turbolasers, Faro expected Savit to launch some of his own fighter against her, and ordered the Chimaera to move slightly above the plane of battle, goading the Firedrake to pitch upward in response. The slight change in the Firedrake's positioning meant that instead of the ship's side, the cloaked gravity generator hit the hangar bay, damaging the TIE launch racks. Faro was unaware that the group Thrawn had taken with him had already disabled the launch mechanism and minimized the threat of fighters, but not before the TIE pilots Thrawn had brought with him had commandeered four of Savit's TIEs and left the hangar along with Grand Admiral's shuttle. In her broadcast to the other ships of the Third Fleet, Faro explained this departure as Savit's pilots' mutiny against the Grand Admiral's attack on the Chimaera. At that point Savit's fourth ship, the Harbinger, that had so far been sitting well away from the confrontation announced that it would support the Chimaera, and Harbinger's captain, Gilad Pellaeon invited the captains of the Stormbird and the Misthunter to do the same. With Thrawn's shuttle jamming all the outgoing communications from the Firedrake and Savit's own bridge crew growing uncomfortable with the situation, the tide of the battle turned into Faro's favor.
In the end Savit was arrested by Dayja Collerand, an ISB agent who had hooked up with Ronan and Vanto on Aloxor, and who had arrived on the Firedrake with Ronan pretending to be a drifter called Mole. With their business with Savit completed, Thrawn, Faro, and the Chimaera were free to return to support their Chiss allies against the Grysk forces. Their help, however, turned out not to be necessary since the Steadfast and the TIE Defenders had been victorious, and the Grysks had rather self-destructed their ships than allowed themselves to be captured and interrogated. To Faro's relief all the Defenders had also made it through the battle without damage—she never liked to sent her people to danger.
With both Savit and the Grysks out of the picture it was time for Ronan to deliver his report on Thrawn's gralloc hunt to Grand Moff Tarkin and Director Krennic. Since the investigation had gone off vector from the beginning with the discovery that the grallocs were not the true problem, Ronan informed Tarkin and Krennic that Thrawn had failed in the terms of their agreement—the Grand Admiral had solved the actual problem but had done nothing to the creatures themselves. Faro was furious to hear how the Assistant Director slanted his report in a way that led to Tarkin deciding to deny Thrawn the funding necessary for the TIE Defender program. She knew she had a reputation for toeing the line of insubordination, and for once she was ready to step across it if it only meant that she could give Ronan a piece of her mind about how he had backstabbed Thrawn, but the Grand Admiral didn't give her a chance to get the Assistant Director alone as he sent Ronan down to the hangar with a death trooper escort as soon as Ronar had delivered his report. Seeing the Assistant Director walk out didn't leave Faro any other choice but to swallow her anger and frustration.
After the visitors were gone from the Chimaera Thrawn asked Faro if she had been unhappy about his decision to recommend against her planned transfer to Task Force 231. The question itself carried the confirmation that he had indeed done so, which in itself shocked Faro, and she asked Thrawn for an explanation why he had done so. The Grand Admiral's reason was even more of a shock as he had suggested to the High Command that instead of commanding a task force, Faro should be moved into a more prestigious position as the commander of the Eleventh Fleet. When the Grand Admiral further suggested that such a transfer might well include also a promotion, Faro was certain Thrawn was merely joking, but the Chiss was completely serious. He further complimented her on her skills in tactics as well as in navy politics, revealing that he had been aware of her sending anonymous reports to Tarkin about their activities. To Faro's final and ultimate shock Thrawn informed her that the High Command had already approved her transfer to the Eleventh Fleet and as soon as the Chimaera would arrive back to Lothal Faro would leave the ship for Coruscant in order to start her pre-command orientation.
Personality and traits
- "One always has qualms, Admiral. The key is to prepare yourself as best you can, and not to let the doubts stop you."
- ―Commodore Faro, to Admiral Ar'alani
Karyn Faro was a female human with light skin, brown eyes and dark brown hair which she had cut short. She was confident and straightforward, her frankness sometimes bordering on insubordination toward superiors. Her cynicism and errant behavior resulted from her disdain towards officers in the high command, who had risen to their position through their connections, rather than by their own merits and skills. Faro recognized the effect of nepotism in the navy, but did not allow well connected subordinates like Chief Hangar Master Xoxtin to get away with ignoring orders, even though confrontations with them might damage her own career.
Having lived through the Clone Wars, Faro possessed great tactical aptitude and recognized similar traits in other officers. She, like many other navy officers, initially appeared skeptical of Thrawn, but soon recognized his tactical genius and brilliant leadership. Thrawn gained her respect, and she went on to serve him with loyalty and pride. She also recognized the same talents in Thrawn's aide, Eli Vanto, and lauded him for being among the few officers who could truly understand Thrawn. Faro, in turn, earned Thrawn's respect and trust, and the grand admiral willingly listened to her suggestions and opinions. He also relied on Faro to be able to act on her own discretion when Thrawn was absent from the Chimaera. Thrawn's confidence in her abilities led him to believe that she would go to waste as a commander of a task force, and instead recommended that Faro should be moved right up to command an entire fleet. Upon learning of his attempt to further her career, and that the high command had accepted her transfer to the Eleventh Fleet, Faro thanked the Grand Admiral for his efforts and expressed her pride and satisfaction of the years she had been serving under Thrawn's command.
Despite Imperial regulations and the use of numeric codes to identify the source and the different levels of importance in communications to and from a Star Destroyer, Faro had a tendency to turn those codes into colors in her mind. She enjoyed looking at the pretty pictures from Thrawn's art holo collection, even though she could not understand how the Grand Admiral pulled such detailed analysis from the obscure sources. She trusted Thrawn's judgement enough to go against overwhelming odds following his instructions in the battle against Grand Admiral Savit. However, sending those under her command into danger never came easy for her, and she endeavored to take extra precautions when possible.
Faro saw Thrawn's TIE Defender project to be essential to the Empire and to the Navy. When Assistant Director Ronan maneuvered Tarkin into denying Thrawn the necessary funding, Faro took it more personally than the Grand Admiral did. While she had spent her career toeing the line of insubordination, her anger because of Ronan's betrayal finally almost drove her across it as she wanted to confront Ronan and didn't care if her verbal salvo would ruin her own career.
Skills and abilities
- "What you did was observe your opponent, and plan your strategy accordingly. Those are all signs of a good commander. You also have a far better sense of Imperial politics than I do."
- ―Grand Admiral Thrawn, to Commodore Faro
Faro was a competent officer and her long service with Thrawn honed her innate tactical abilities to the point where the Grand Admiral believe that she was ready to command a fleet of her own. She was also confident in her own abilities and was good at playing things off her sleeve when facing unexpected situations. When Thrawn left Faro in command of the Chimaera, he usually gave her general instructions on how to proceed, but then allowed her to act on her own discretion depending on the situation. At first Faro was slightly uncomfortable with the added responsibility, as when Thrawn sent her to Sammun with the 96th Task Force. The longer she worked with him, more confident she became, and finally she dared to modify even his more detailed orders to suit her own reading of the tactical situation.
During her service to Imperial Navy, Faro had learned to read stormtroopers' white-on-white rank and identification markings, a feat that was difficult to master without using stormtrooper helmet's visual enhancements. Under Thrawn's command, she had also almost started to enjoy the times when the grand admiral questioned her about their tactical situation, since Faro felt that it improved her own skills and made her a better officer, even though she sometimes felt that she was not quite able to reach the level Thrawn expected from her. She was also very curious about Thrawn's past and slightly envious of the time Vanto had spent with him.
At some point in her life Faro had picked up some proficiency in Sy Bisti. Although she herself admitted that she understood the trade language better than she spoke it, she was fluent enough to explain Star Destroyer helm operations to Navigator Vah'nya. While serving with Thrawn, Faro grew skilled in reading the vocal tones of the language as well as general facial and body language. She was good enough that she thought it polite to turn away from a private conversation between Thrawn and Admiral Ar'alani, that the two Chiss held in Cheunh, because simply observing the two admirals might have been considered eavesdropping.
Behind the scenes
Karyn Faro first appeared in Timothy Zahn's 2017 novel Thrawn. She was first pictured in the fourth issue of Star Wars: Thrawn comic series based on the novel. She later appeared in both sequels of the novel, Thrawn: Alliances and Thrawn: Treason.
- Thrawn (First appearance)
- Thrawn audiobook
- Thrawn 4 (First pictured)
- Thrawn 6
- Thrawn: Alliances
- Thrawn: Alliances audiobook
- Thrawn: Treason
- Thrawn: Treason audiobook