- "Attention, Implacable. Be advised, you've just become the victims of Dinner Squadron. Consider yourselves humiliated. And welcome to Folor. Out."
- ―Kell Tainer
Kell Tainer was a Human male pilot, commando and member of Wraith Squadron starting from its inception in 7 ABY. A naturalized citizen of Sluis Van, he was a skilled demolitions expert, hand-to-hand combatant, and starfighter mechanic. Tainer's last name was originally Doran, but his family changed his name after Kell's father, Kissek Doran, earned a label of cowardice while serving as a starfighter pilot for the Rebel Alliance. Kell served in the commandos for some time before transferring to Starfighter Command, participating in the Second Battle of Borleias with distinction.
Seeking to clear his family name, Tainer transferred into starfighters, but was not as successful as he was in the commandos. Tainer was recruited into Wraith Squadron, though much to his dismay he encountered Wes Janson, the man who had killed his father. Kell, however, performed admirably in the Wraiths as an X-wing pilot, a mechanic, and as a demolitions expert. Service in the Wraiths improved Tainer's emotional stability, and he was able to reconcile with Janson and realize that he was unsuited for command. He served in the missions to defeat Apwar Trigit and later Warlord Zsinj, and became romantically involved with fellow Wraith Tyria Sarkin, whom he later married. The couple had two children, a son named Doran and a daughter named Jesmin, both of whom were Force-sensitive. Tainer remained in the Wraiths after they transferred to Intelligence and participated in a mission on Ryvester to eliminate Imperial admiral Kosh Teradoc, creating a bomb that Teradoc was conned into taking into his private vaults and research labs, where it exploded. Tainer was still active as of the Yuuzhan Vong War, assisting in the defense of Borleias and with the infiltration of occupied Coruscant. Following the end of that conflict, he retired from the military. Years later, Tainer served as an explosives technician on Kessel in order to prematurely detonate alien explosives packages buried in tunnels beneath the surfaces.
Childhood and early career
- "Tainer was a fighter-craft mechanic on Sluis Van. When he came to the Alliance, he trained as a demolitions expert. Served with Lieutenant Page's commandos, then demonstrated a native talent for fighting in re-creational simulators and got permission to train in the real thing."
- ―Wedge Antilles on Kell Tainer
Kell Tainer was born on Alderaan during the reign of the Galactic Empire, though his family's surname was originally Doran. Tainer's father, a man named Kissek Doran, was part of the Rebel Alliance and served in the Tierfon Yellow Aces as a starfighter pilot. While on a mission, Doran suddenly turned tail, risking the position of the other Rebel starfighters by his cowardice. A fellow squad member, Wes Janson, was forced to shoot down Doran, killing him in order to preserve the mission. Tainer's family and Kell Tainer himself were devastated emotionally, not only by Kissek Doran's death, but also by the fact that he'd died as a coward.
In his adulthood, Tainer joined the New Republic that had superseded the Rebel Alliance. He served as a fighter-craft mechanic on the world of Sluis Van and eventually joined the commandos, where he was trained in the use of demolitions. While serving with the Katarn Commandos, he developed an aptitude for unarmed combat and received additional training in that form of warfare.
Despite his success, Tainer desired to salvage his family's name by flying as a successful New Republic starfighter pilot. He started work in starfighter simulators, but though he was largely a talented pilot, two incidents haunted him. In the first, Tainer crashed a Z-95 Headhunter and in the second, his landing of an X-wing fighter was hard enough to damage the craft. In both cases, Tainer claimed unresponsive controls to be the source of the accidents, a claim which was later inferred to indicate an unwillingness to accept responsibility for his failures. As such, he was close to washing out of eligibility as a starfighter pilot.
Prior to his joining Wraith Squadron, Kell served with distinction in Judder Page's Katarn Commandos during the second Battle of Borleias. He planted explosive charges under fire while on Borleias and was subsequently recognized for his efforts.
- "I'll bet you've had this dream, a dream of being a pilot and restoring the honor to your family's name, since you were back on Alderaan. Well, you've yet to fly a combat mission and you're already about to wash out of the pilot ranks. Here's your last chance. So, do you stay or do you go?"
- ―Wedge Antilles to Kell Tainer on his entry to Wraith Squadron
In 7 ABY, Tainer saw one last chance to redeem his father's name by joining a starfighter squadron. He volunteered for and was selected as one of the pilot-candidates for a new unit put together by reputed ace Commander Wedge Antilles. Tainer reported for a preliminary meeting with Antilles, only to find that Antilles' executive officer was none other than Wes Janson, the man who had slain Tainer's father. As soon as Janson's identity was confirmed, Tainer immediately requested withdrawal of his application to join the squadron. Antilles, however, insisted on knowing the reason for that action, and Tainer was compelled to tell him the truth.
After Antilles held a private conversation with Janson, Tainer was brought back in to face the two officers. Tainer was asked by Antilles to stay in the unit because of the value of his skills, though the former commando was seething merely at being in the presence of Janson. Antilles also warned Tainer that this was his last chance as a pilot—and his last chance to clear his family name of the stain of cowardice. That last statement was enough to move Tainer to open anger, but Antilles was nonplussed and asked for Tainer's decision. Tainer opted to stay in the new unit and transferred to Folor Base to begin the training and evaluation process.
In his first simulator exercise as one of the pilot-candidates, Tainer was paired with Thakwaash pilot Hohass Ekwesh as part of a simulated starfighter combat exercise. However, the intelligence they were given as to the nature of the defense they were conducting was incorrect. Tainer quickly assumed the lead and organized the other three pilots into a skilled last-ditch effort to protect the base. Ekwesh had other ideas, though, and charged recklessly into combat, an action which got him destroyed. Tainer and the other three pilots successfully survived the simulated attack, but the results of the performance were quite surprising to Tainer. Though Tainer's performance had been commendable—shooting down five fighters and thinking well under pressure—the scoring system meant that Tainer's score was given to his wingman and vice versa. Thanks to Ekwesh's poor combat choices, that left Tainer with a score of zero. The pilot was infuriated, both at Ekwesh and at Janson, whom he believed was purposefully trying to sabotage Tainer's chances at flying with the squadron.
After the simulator run, Tainer and the other three pilots from the simulator run went to DownTime, the cantina on Folor Base. There, Tainer met Tyria Sarkin and the Gamorrean pilot Voort "Piggy" saBinring, the other two pilots from the simulator run. For his part, Ekwesh apologized and explained that his species possessed multiple personalities depending on the task, and that Ekwesh's pilot mind was known for being undisciplined. Tainer was still unhappy, but accepted the apology—he was otherwise occupied admiring Sarkin, whom he considered the image of the perfect female pilot. While they were in DownTime, Tainer was also introduced to two other pilot candidates, former doctor Ton Phanan and former holodrama star Garik "Face" Loran. Phanan managed to quickly irritate Sarkin with his bold flirting, to Tainer's disappointment, but he resolved to spend more time with her later.
The next simulator run Tainer experienced was an ambush on a volcanic world. Tainer's craft was damaged in the engagement, but he survived, though the same could not be said for Ekwesh, who was again destroyed without a kill. Following that run, Tainer was once more paired with Ekwesh. This time, though, as the Thakwaash's pilot mind started to break formation and attack recklessly, Tainer placed a target lock on his wingman's fighter. That was enough to keep Ekwesh's attention and restrain his pilot mind somewhat. Tainer ended the run with only two kills due a surprise shot from a TIE Interceptor—flown by Wedge Antilles—but was congratulated by Janson for his "unorthodox tactics in personnel management."
In the coming weeks, the field of pilot-candidates was narrowed down and Tainer remained in the running for a slot in the new unit. This did little to ease his mind when around Janson; he would tense up whenever he was in the presence of the officer. One day, while in DownTime discussing how many of the pilots had black marks on their records or were on their last chance at flying starfighters, several pilots, including Tainer, received comlink messages informing them to report to the briefing amphitheater. The new unit's roster had been selected and Tainer was one of the pilots selected for it. At the briefing room, Tainer was recognized for his commando skills as well as having the highest cumulative score during the training runs. Tainer also received his callsign designation as "Gray Five" and his wingman; unsurprisingly to him, it was Ekwesh. However, Tainer was given charge of the squadron's Two Flight, which pleased him. As he departed the briefing amphitheatre, Tainer found Sarkin shocked and dejected. She told him that she was last, and though he tried to console her, his efforts were stymied by her asking him if he'd ever been last in anything. As he hadn't, it was hard for him to sympathize.
Tainer later worked in the X-wing hangar on Folor Base alongside the unit's chief mechanic, Cubber Daine. They spent considerable time performing maintenance on the new fighters and painted a dismal picture of the ships' readiness to Antilles when the commander inquired as to their status. In actuality, the fighters were not nearly so broken-down, but Daine, Tainer, and the mechanic team had purposefully exaggerated the time needed for maintenance in order to generate more leisure time. While working, the famed Corellian freighter Millennium Falcon arrived, bearing General Han Solo and Chewbacca. Tainer saw them from a distance, but soon departed with Daine to play sabacc.
For his part, Tainer continued to work on training, this time in an actual X-wing. In a target practice run involving proton torpedoes, Tainer was surprised by a sudden failure in his targeting systems, resulting in a clean miss. Adding to the tension he'd felt after being placed in charge of Two Flight, he was not happy. After the run, he returned to base and proceeded to pound a training dummy mercilessly with unarmed strikes in an effort to vent his anger. Ekwesh confronted him and told him that his continual lashing himself over failure was not healthy and invited him to join the other pilots in DownTime to relax. Tainer, after learning that Sarkin was there, acquiesced. There, he joined the other pilots in sharing stories of practical jokes in an effort to make the reticent pilot Myn Donos laugh, which succeeded. Their merriment was eventually cut short when they were reminded of various tasks to be done, including studying for a hyperspace navigational exercise.
The next day, Tainer met Sarkin alone early for breakfast and confessed his love to her. She immediately rebuffed his advances and told him he'd fallen in love with a fantasy woman, not the real Tyria Sarkin. Tainer reluctantly realized she was right and left. Shortly thereafter, the unit received their official designation as Wraith Squadron. That same day, Tainer and the rest of the squadron took off for their hyperspace exercise, heading for a star known as Doldrums. While the squadron was forming up, communications specialist Jesmin Ackbar detected transmissions on an Imperial channel. As other members of the Wraiths suggested ideas to analyze the source of the signal, Tainer suggested that the squadron's code-slicer, Bothan Eurrsk Thri'ag, slice into the governmental records of the nearby world of Commenor and look for anomalies. Thri'ag's efforts yielded results and informed the squadron than an Imperial Star Destroyer, Implacable, was inbound to attack Folor Base. With that information in hand, the Wraiths returned to Folor Base to set up a quick defense.
The Wraiths set down on an ice field while transports were loaded and prepared to launch for an evacuation of the base. Tainer suggested that the squadron engage the Star Destroyer to buy time for the transports, but his suggestion was inexplicably rejected by Antilles, which left Tainer embarrassed and seething. In fact, the New Republic had set up a decoy base on the opposite side of the moon to distract Implacable. Only when the Imperial warship realized it had been duped did the Wraiths and other starfighters from Folor Base launch to protect the transports. When word that one of the transports was having engine trouble reached the starfighter commanders, Wedge Antilles and General Edor Crespin, they assigned Tainer, Ekwesh, and two A-wing fighter pilots to fly ahead, using a fissure called the Pig Trough for cover. The plan was for the four fighters to serve as spotters, signaling the rest of their squadrons, who would power down inside the Pig Trough, to emerge and wreak havoc on the Imperial fighter screen.
Tainer and Ekwesh raced the two A-wings to a vantage point inside the Pig Trough, and the X-wings outflew the A-wings to reach there first. Once at their destination, they powered down and waited for the Imperials to arrive. Once the hostile forces were spotted, they sent a transmission back to Folor Base. The sight of Implacable concerned Tainer, though, as he knew the warship could cause significant damage. In order to distract it, Tainer thought of a diversion wherein he and the other three pilots with him would fly close together to mask their sensor signature and pretend to be Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa on the Millennium Falcon. Tainer's hope was that posing as Rebel dignitaries would distract the Star Destroyer. His ploy worked, distracting Implacable long enough for the last transport to depart. Shouting verbal insults at Implacable as the Star Destroyer futilely attempted to destroy them, Tainer and the other three pilots escaped to rendezvous with their respective units.
During his time in Wraith Squadron, Tainer grew as both a person and a soldier. While on a mission to round up pirates, he performed dangerously risky maneuvers in an ultimately futile attempt to save the life of squad mate Jesmin Ackbar. He fell in love with Flight Officer Tyria Sarkin during the unit's formative weeks and months, despite her initial rebuffs. Additionally, he came to terms with his loathing of Janson. Years before, Janson had been forced to shoot down Kell's father's Y-wing when the neophyte pilot's fit of panic jeopardized the entire Tierfon Yellow Aces squadron. The humiliated Doran family changed their name and emigrated from their native Alderaan to Sluis Van, where Kell spent most of his formative years. After treating Janson with what appeared to be barely-restrained hostility for weeks, Tainer realized that he couldn't fault the older pilot for protecting the lives of others. This was because he discovered that Janson did not kill people for a single mistake, thanks to Janson's efforts to hide the currently catatonic condition of Myn Donos. Kell then revealed that he was not truly angry at Janson, but actually fearful of him.
The Zsinj Campaign
- "I don't have to blow up everything I see. I just like to."
- ―Kell Tainer
Tainer was instrumental in the successful evacuation of Folor base, deceiving Admiral Apwar Trigit into believing that he and his wingmates were actually Rogue Squadron and the Millennium Falcon, buying time for New Republic personnel to escape. He also created the Lunatic vessel, which was used to successfully capture the Zsinj-aligned frigate Night Caller in the Xobome System, and owned an R2-series astromech droid named R2-D609, which he called Thirteen due to a programming error in the droid that caused the droid to answer thirteen when it was asked for a random number. After overcoming an initial attack of panic, he fought in the Battle of Ession, which ultimately saw the destruction of Trigit's Star Destroyer, the Implacable. This attack of panic had happened twice before, and manifested itself as a psychosomatic malfunction (frozen controls) in his X-wing. This was the main reason for the black mark on his previous record, but he evidentually overcame it and became an ace in the battle, shooting down five enemies.
When Wraith Squadron went undercover as the pirate mercenary group the Hawk-bats, he played the role of Lieutenant Dissek, the bodyguard for General "Kargin". Tainer's concocted backstory for Dissek was that he was an Alderaanian with an expertise in hand-to-hand combat, trained under a woman named Qatya Nassin (Shalla Nelprin). Face described her as being capable of killing a Wookiee barehanded, and Kell provided the gruesome details. While disguised as Dissek, Tainer wore a wig with flowing red hair. During a meeting on the Iron Fist, "Dissek" was provoked by a stormtrooper, and keeping to the arrogant personality that he had assigned to the character, Tainer knocked the trooper unconscious. "Dissek" claimed that the action was simply a reflex, and the stormtrooper's superior, General Melvar accepted the explanation, simply impressed by "Dissek"'s skill. The name Dissek was probably derived by combining the first and last names of Kell's father, Kissek Doran. He participated in the Battle of Kuat, and the Battle for the Razor's Kiss. Kell continued to serve throughout the Zsinj campaign, flying in a TIE/IN interceptor as "Drake One" and participating in the final battle of the campaign. Also, when the Wraiths became a intelligence unit, he joined right away.
During a mission to eliminate Imperial admiral Kosh Teradoc on Ryvester in 13 ABY, Tainer posed as an Imperial Navy Special Forces trooper while several other members of the Wraiths set up a meeting with Teradoc in a club outside his base. Tainer's presence was part of a fake raid that persuaded Teradoc to flee with an explosive that Tainer had disguised as a valuable gem-laden artifact. Their ruse was successful and Teradoc took the artifact back to his base where the explosive was triggered when he reached his vault. Tainer stood guard while the other Wraiths made their egress from the club and was the last one out, having been tackled by one of Teradoc's guards. Ekwesh came to his aid, allowing Tainer to make his way to their getaway speeder. The Wraiths were also able to rescue Mulus Cheems, a gemologist whom Teradoc had brought to authenticate the piece. Once the Wraiths and Cheems were aboard the speeder, Targon drove them to a nearby marina, where they stole Teradoc's yacht and departed onto the open waters. With the danger passed, Tainer dumped his Imperial trooper disguise overboard and joined his fellow Wraiths as they appropriated Teradoc's food and drinks for an impromptu celebration.
He eventually married fellow Wraith Tyria Sarkin sometime before the Yuuzhan Vong invasion. Tyria later left the military to focus on her Jedi training, and was eventually confirmed as a Jedi Knight. Tainer and Tyria also had a son, Doran, who was also Force-sensitive. Sometime prior to 19 ABY, Tainer instructed fellow Wraith Hohass Ekwesh on the techniques needed for demolition work, which Ekwesh used to sabotage Imperial-held Mulvar Sensor Station prior to the conclusion of the First Galactic Civil War. Circa the Yuuzhan Vong War, Tainer and his wife had a daughter, Jesmin Tainer, who was named after Jesmin Ackbar. Like Doran, Jesmin was Force-sensitive. Doran and Jesmin were largely raised apart from each other and Jesmin eventually was trained as a Jedi, joined the Antarian Rangers, and assumed the identity of bounty hunter Zilaash Kuh, before joining Wraith Squadron herself in 44 ABY.
The Yuuzhan Vong War
- "And we have explosives. Lots and lots of explosives."
- ―Kell Tainer
During the first few years of the Yuuzhan Vong War, Tainer continued to serve in the Wraiths, who made numerous attempts to break through Vong occupied territory near the enemy-created frontier from Vortex to Bimmisaari. He saw little of his wife, as the Tainers had a long-distance marriage; Tyria traveled extensively through remote areas, teaching Doran the ways of the Jedi. However, it was an arrangement that Tainer accepted and he endured the long months of separation while relishing the celebration when the family was reunited.
After the Battle of Coruscant, he traveled with the rest of the Wraiths to Borleias to assist his former commander, General Wedge Antilles in his fight against the Yuuzhan Vong. While on Borleias, Tainer, in addition to his other duties, put his mechanical skills to work repairing starfighters that had been damaged in skirmishes with lingering remnants of Yuuzhan Vong forces. On one such occasion, he aided Jedi Master Luke Skywalker in performing maintenance on Skywalker's battle-damaged X-wing.
Mission to Coruscant
- Kell Tainer: "As long as Aunt Tahiri is going to be back in time for my bedtime story, I'll be all right."
- Tahiri Veila: "He's starting to get on my nerves. Doesn't he know that's a bad idea?"
- Baljos Arnjak: "He knows. But he's a demolitions expert. He likes playing with things that blow up in his face."
- ―Kell Tainer's response to news that some of the Jedi and Wraiths were going to be away for a while[src]
Shortly thereafter, Skywalker began putting together an expedition to journey to Coruscant, in response to visions of darkness he had seen there. When Iella Wessiri Antilles, the ranking intelligence officer on Borleias, heard of Skywalker's plan, she offered him aid and personnel from her department, including several of the Wraiths. As such, Wraith members Bhindi Drayson, Baljos Arnjak, Elassar Targon, Kell Tainer, and Wraith leader Garik Loran were assigned to the expedition. In addition to Skywalker, two other Jedi, Mara Jade Skywalker and Tahiri Veila, as well as scientist Danni Quee decided to accompany the mission to Coruscant. For the infiltration, the Wraiths brought along numerous specialized items, including vonduun crab armor disguises, fake amphistaff weapons, surveillance droids disguised as fungi, and orbital insertion pods that had been camouflaged to resemble orbital debris or coralskipper husks. The members of the expedition were then loaded onto an old freighter, Record Time, and flown to Coruscant by businessman and former Rebel Alliance general Lando Calrissian.
Upon reversion from hyperspace over Coruscant, Record Time came under attack by Yuuzhan Vong control ships. After simulating the ship's breaking up and venting debris, Calrissian ejected the orbital insertion pods containing the infiltration team, which proceeded to plummet thousands of meters down to the surface, their fall braked by repulsorlifts contained in the pods. Though some of the expedition members were shaken by the fall and Tainer's pod punched through the roof of a building to land several floors below the others, they all emerged intact and unharmed, ready to begin their mission.
Tainer proceeded with the others in exploring the ruined galactic capital, clad in Yuuzhan Vong disguises that made the infiltration party resemble Yuuzhan Vong warriors. On one occasion, they encountered a hunting group of warriors. The Yuuzhan Vong were fooled by the disguises, but demanded that the infiltrators yield right of way, something no Yuuzhan Vong warrior would do. As such, a fight broke out between the New Republic and Yuuzhan Vong groups, with the Jedi leading the charge. For his part, Tainer lobbed a bomb onto a walkway between two buildings and suggested a fast retreat to the Jedi while spraying the Yuuzhan Vong with blasterfire. The resulting explosion slew the majority of the warriors and completely demolished the walkway, leaving their presence on Coruscant still something of a secret—for the moment.
Not long afterward, they encountered a group of Coruscant survivors, ragged and gaunt, who rushed screaming at them with crude weapons. Upon the advice of Bhindi Drayson, the party withdrew. Once they were safely away, Drayson explained that it was important to keep the nature of the disguises secret, and Skywalker concurred. The Jedi Master then led a small group back to find the survivors, after first shedding their disguises. Tainer was left with the rest of the party, which was to his relief, as their sudden run had made him short of breath. However, his temporary exhaustion did not stop him from teasing the youngest Jedi on trip, Tahiri Veila, whom he referred to sarcastically as his Aunt Tahiri.
Skywalker's meeting with the survivors pointed them towards a facility from his sensation of darkness had been emanating. Investigating the area, the group found a hidden laboratory and air purification center. Most of the Wraiths and the Jedi entered the laboratory to explore it, while Tainer and Targon were left to stand watch. The exploration group soon discovered that the laboratory was both isolated and still had functional power. They chose it as their headquarters, although Skywalker had learned that a three-meter dark-side being had carved his way out of the laboratory with a lightsaber. To prevent the being from returning, Tainer and Targon secured its exit hole by welding a heavy metal sheet across the hole. He also helped clean out one of the rooms in the laboratory, making it more fit for living and deployed holocams with which to observe the surface and take astronomical readings.
The group operated out of the abandoned laboratory for some time, making contact with the survivors, searching for an escape vehicle and, in the case of the Jedi, pursuing the three-meter being, whom they eventually learned was a cybernetically enhanced Dark Jedi named Lord Nyax. Most of the infiltration team abandoned their Yuuzhan Vong disguises, even for missions, as there was scarce few warrior patrols in the area around their base of operations. However, Tainer and Loran insisted on wearing their armor on all missions, claiming that it made them look dashing, though Master Skywalker suspected it was a contest between them to see who would give up and admit discomfort from wearing the armor first.
On one particular mission, Tainer, along with Targon, Loran, and the three Jedi, helped locate a group of tattered Coruscant survivors clearing away debris frantically, as the workers had been mentally commanded to do so by Lord Nyax. A party of Yuuzhan Vong warriors entered the building and began attacking the workers and Nyax, who handily defeated both them and their Jedi-hunting voxyn. The three Jedi dropped down from their observation position to engage Nyax, while Tainer and Loran located someone who had accompanied the Yuuzhan Vong warriors: the treacherous New Republic Senator Viqi Shesh. Tainer hoisted Shesh into the air and as he did so, a locator beacon fell from her clothing, and Loran appropriated the device. Tainer bound his captive's hands and then, along with Loran, tried to figure out who to shoot first—Nyax, or the Yuuzhan Vong. Instead, bringing along their squirming prisoner, they descended lower to examine what the survivors were excavating.
They soon found that the survivors were clearing rubble away from a functional construction droid and had almost finished with their task. No sooner had Loran passed that message along to their Jedi allies than the droid activated and began plowing through the cityscape. The resulting structural damage forced Tainer and Loran to release Shesh and hang on in order to prevent themselves from falling from the unsteady catwalk upon which they were standing. The Jedi rejoined them, having been unable to defeat Nyax. Tainer was assigned to use the locator beacon recovered from Shesh, in the hopes that it led to a functional ship. As it turned out, the demolitions expert did find a spaceworthy transport, Ugly Truth. The ship was built into a starscraper and its escape shaft was blocked by several tons of rubble, but Tainer's explosives made short work of that obstacle. On Skywalker's order, the Wraiths and Danni Quee were ordered to get aboard the ship while the Jedi dealt with Nyax. During the Jedi's duel with Nyax, the Dark Jedi managed to use the construction droid to release a wellspring of Force energy under the ruins of the old Jedi Temple, which gave Tainer an odd feeling. After all but the Jedi—and Arnjak, who had decided to remain on Coruscant—were aboard, Tainer blew out a side wall to release Ugly Truth. He then went back to pick up the Jedi, who had mortally wounded Nyax. Skywalker wasn't prepared to leave the area though, until Nyax was dead, and so the transport hovered nearby after the Masters Skywalker and Veila scrambled aboard the ship. Thanks to bombardment by Yuuzhan Vong warships, though, accompanied by Nyax's projection of his own pain through the Force, the Jedi soon learned that Nyax was dead—though Tainer also felt the Dark Jedi's pain as well.
Once Nyax was dead, Tainer turned the ship away from the scene where Nyax had been defeated, as numerous Yuuzhan Vong craft were inbound toward the area. Before he took the ship into space, he returned to where Ugly Truth had been berthed, as an open comlink they had left there had picked up sounds of sniffling. They found Shesh there, crying, and were preparing to seize her when Shesh noticed a badly injured Yuuzhan Vong warrior, Denua Ku, following her with intent to kill. Rather than die at his hands or be captured, she stepped off the edge of the building, falling to her death. Ku collapsed a minute later and Ugly Truth then made for space. Upon their return to the Borleias system, Tainer and Skywalker wove the ship through the Yuuzhan Vong blockade and were able to land safely at the New Republic garrison.
Tainer participated in the final Battle of Yuuzhan'tar, joining up with Shamed Ones and resistance forces on the ground and working with both Wraith Leader Garik Loran and Judder Page. Tainer was part of a group that helped rescued a downed pilot, Colonel Jagged Fel, and shortly thereafter linked up with his long-lost comrade Baljos Arnjak, who had survived his years on occupied Coruscant. Ultimately, after being pushed back on Coruscant's surface and in orbit overhead, the Yuuzhan Vong were defeated on Coruscant, bringing an end to the Yuuzhan Vong War.
Tainer was a part of a group of retired pilots who helped Lando Calrissian save Kessel from being destroyed by alien explosives packages underground. He helped convert proton torpedo warheads to use thermal detonators for use in prematurely detonating the explosives, which were only a threat to the planet if set off in a certain sequence. After the operation was successfully completed, Tainer and the other pilots were thanked by Calrissian and his wife in a celebration.
Behind the scenes
Kell Tainer was first created for X-Wing: Wraith Squadron by Aaron Allston. Tainer would later appear in two more X-Wing series books by Allston, X-Wing: Iron Fist and X-Wing: Solo Command. The character would make further appearances in the two books by Allston for the New Jedi Order series, The New Jedi Order: Enemy Lines I: Rebel Dream and The New Jedi Order: Enemy Lines II: Rebel Stand, as well as a minor appearance in the final book of the series, The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force, by James Luceno. Tainer was also depicted and mentioned in two reference works discussing the X-wing series, Wraith Squadron and Who's Who in Rogue Squadron. Tainer later appeared in other works by Allston, the novels Fate of the Jedi: Outcast and X-Wing: Mercy Kill, though only in flashback form in the latter work.
- Scoundrels audiobook
- X-Wing: Wraith Squadron (First appearance)
- X-Wing: Iron Fist
- X-Wing: Solo Command
- The New Jedi Order: Enemy Lines I: Rebel Dream
- The New Jedi Order: Enemy Lines II: Rebel Stand
- The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force
- Fate of the Jedi: Outcast
- Fate of the Jedi: Outcast audiobook
- Fate of the Jedi: Backlash (Indirect mention only)
- Fate of the Jedi: Backlash audiobook (Indirect mention only)
- X-Wing: Mercy Kill
- X-Wing: Mercy Kill audiobook
- "Who's Who in Rogue Squadron" – Star Wars Insider 59
- Wraith Squadron"—Star Wars Gamer 9 "
- Star Wars Roleplaying Game Saga Edition Core Rulebook
- The Force Unleashed Campaign Guide
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Galaxy at War
- "Blaster" – Star Wars Insider 134
- The Essential Reader's Companion
Notes and references
- X-Wing: Wraith Squadron
- Kell Tainer is described as being no older than his early twenties and possibly younger in Scoundrels, set in 0 ABY.
- X-Wing: Iron Fist
- The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force
- X-Wing: Mercy Kill
- The New Jedi Order: Enemy Lines I: Rebel Dream
- Jesmin Tainer is described as an adult but still young in 44 ABY, implying that she was born either shortly before or during the Yuuzhan Vong War.
- The New Jedi Order: Star by Star
- The New Jedi Order: Enemy Lines II: Rebel Stand
- Fate of the Jedi: Outcast