- "I asked Lucasfilm: “Okay, so what do I need to know [about this character]?” And they said she is a kickass female spy in space."
- ―Delilah S. Dawson
Phasma is a canon novel written by Delilah S. Dawson as part of Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi. It tells the origins of Captain Phasma of the First Order prior to the events of the film Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The novel was first published by Del Rey on September 1, 2017 in hardcover, and was released in paperback on April 24, 2018.
- 1 Publisher's summary
- 2 Plot summary
- 2.1 Spy games
- 2.2 A leadership struggle
- 2.3 Seeds of sibling rivalry
- 2.4 Incentives and dialogue
- 2.5 The crashed starship
- 2.6 Forging an alliance
- 2.7 Cardinal's inner struggles
- 2.8 A perilous journey
- 2.9 The Con Star interregnum
- 2.10 Prisoners of the Arratu
- 2.11 Bread and circuses
- 2.12 Entering the "dead lands"
- 2.13 Confrontation with Keldo
- 2.14 Into the stars
- 2.15 The moment of truth
- 2.16 The heart of darkness
- 2.17 Depths of despair
- 2.18 Confronting Phasma
- 2.19 Rescued from death
- 2.20 Becoming Captain Phasma
- 3 Development
- 4 Media
- 5 Appearances
- 6 Bibliography
- 7 Notes and references
- 8 External links
One of the most cunning and merciless officers of the First Order, Captain Phasma commands the favor of her superiors, the respect of her peers, and the terror of her enemies. But for all her renown, Phasma remains as virtually unknown as the impassive expression on her gleaming chrome helmet. Now, an adversary is bent on unearthing her mysterious origins—and exposing a secret she guards as zealously and ruthlessly as she serves her masters.
Deep inside the Battlecruiser Absolution, a captured Resistance spy endures brutal interrogation at the hands of a crimson-armored stormtrooper—Cardinal. But the information he desires has nothing to do with the Resistance or its covert operations against the First Order.
What the mysterious stormtrooper wants is Phasma's past—and with it whatever long-buried scandal, treachery, or private demons he can wield against the hated rival who threatens his own power and privilege in the ranks of the First Order. His prisoner has what Cardinal so desperately seeks, but she won't surrender it easily. As she wages a painstaking war of wills with her captor, bargaining for her life in exchange for every precious revelation, the spellbinding chronicle of the inscrutable Phasma unfolds. But this knowledge may prove more than just dangerous once Cardinal possesses it—and once his adversary unleashes the full measure of her fury.
The Resistance operative Vi Moradi and her droid U5-GG ("Gigi") are on a scouting mission checking hyperspace coordinates for any First Order activities. During one such routine mission, her Starhopper is captured in the tractor beam of the Resurgent-class Star Destroyer Absolution. As a precaution, she gives Gigi a memory wipe. Vi's Starhopper is hauled into the hangar of the Absolution where she and Gigi are detained by a contingent of stormtroopers led by Captain Cardinal, who wears red stormtrooper armor.
Vi claims to be an independent trader but Captain Cardinal recognizes her as a Resistance spy and insists on interrogating Vi himself. Taking care to keep the interview off First Order records, Cardinal takes her to a secret interrogation room in the bowels of the Absolution and fastens her to an interrogation chair. After learning that Vi had previously visited the planet Parnassos, Cardinal asks her what she knows about his rival Captain Phasma, a rising star in the First Order.
A leadership struggle
Vi feigns ignorance until Cardinal reveals that he knows about her brother, Baako Moradi and threatens to hurt him. Under pressure, Vi proceeds to tell a story about Phasma told by a woman named Siv. Siv's story begins twelve years ago on Parnassos. The then-sixteen year old Siv is part of a band called the Scyre, a group of hunter-gatherers who lived on the environmentally ruined world of Parnassos, which suffered a great cataclysm years ago. The Scyre eke out a harsh living on this post-apocalyptic world.
The Scyre are led by the ailing, elderly Egil. A young upstart named Porr has stabbed Egil in a leadership coup, seriously wounding the aging leader. Porr insists on using a detraxor to extract the nutrients from Egil's body, a quasi-religious ritual that provides nutrients to the clan on the barren world. Siv speaks out against Porr's dishonorable action, telling him that he has violated the sacred ritual. A young man named Keldo, who is missing the lower part of one of his legs, also condemns Porr for killing the leader outside of combat.
Porr is defiant and proclaims himself the new leader of the clan. However, he is challenged by Keldo's younger sister Phasma, a big-built and fearsome warrior. Phasma rejects Porr's offer of becoming her deputy and challenges him to a duel. Phasma performs well against Porr in the fight. However, Keldo incapacitates Porr by slicing the tendons of his ankles, permanently hobbling him. Keldo justifies hobbling Porr as punishment for raising weapons against his people. Supporting her brother, Phasma then forces Porr to choose between death or life serving her. Porr chooses to live and submits to Phasma and Keldo. As Keldo and Phasma assume leadership of the Scyre, Egil dies and is subject to the detraxor.
Seeds of sibling rivalry
Returning to the present, a dissatisfied Cardinal demands "pertinent intelligence" about Phasma from Vi. Vi and Cardinal strike a deal for the stormtrooper captain to release her once she has divulged useful information about Phasma. In addition, Vi convinces Cardinal to reveal his face. Vi determines that Cardinal was one of the General Brendol Hux's child soldiers that he recruited into his training program following the Battle of Jakku. Vi also reveals that Phasma falsely claimed that Parnassos was destroyed in order to conceal a secret deal with the late General Hux.
Continuing the story, Vi tells Cardinal that Phasma will do anything to survive. Ten years ago, the Scyre mother Ylva had a five year old girl named Frey. Due to a high infant mortality rate, the people of Parnassos valued their children. A rival clan called the Claws, led by the Dug Balder launch a raid in an attempt to kidnap Frey. However, the Scyre thwart the intruder's attempt with Phasma defeating Balder in combat. She wounds him by smearing her sword with a paste made from a toxic lichen.
Despite the victory in safeguarding Frey, tensions erupt between Phasma and her brother Keldo. Keldo is upset that Phasma withheld the secret of the toxic lichen from him. With Balder wounded and his people licking their wounds, Phasma then proposes raiding the Claws' settlement and seizing their territory for themselves while they still have the momentum. However, Keldo disagrees and insists that they only use military force for defense rather than aggression, no matter how tyrannical their neighbors are. Following a vote, most of the Scyre vote in favor of Keldo's proposal to negotiate a peace with the Claws. However, Phasma regards her brother's decision as a betrayal, sowing the seeds of discord between the two siblings.
Incentives and dialogue
While Cardinal is mesmerized by the story, he still demands information that will help take down Phasma at a meeting with the late Brendol's son General Armitage Hux tomorrow. In return for more information, Vi convinces Cardinal to bring her water and protein rations. While Cardinal feeds her, Vi tells the stormtrooper that they get to eat real food and plants in the Resistance with ingredients such as spice and salt. In return, Cardinal tells her that he subsisted on sand rats, birds, and crickets while living on Jakku.
When Cardinal asks Vi why she joined the Resistance, Vi admits that she is a mercenary but says she will not work for the First Order, regarding them as the "bad guys." In response, Cardinal counters that the Resistance lacks morals and advocates anarchy, destruction, and selfishness. When Vi responds that the First Order is bent on galactic dominance, Cardinal claims that democracy has failed in the Republic and the New Republic because sentient beings are incapable of making choices that are in their best interests in the long run. Cardinal argues that the First Order stands for stability.
After a political discussion, Cardinal talks about growing up in poverty on Jakku and castigates the New Republic for ignoring poor, backwater worlds in favor of rich worlds. When Vi counters that the First Order is presently not feeding and providing medical care to the children of Jakku, Cardinal says that time is coming. An argument almost breaks out when Vi questions Brendol Hux's goodness. Vi manages to defuse the situation when she offers to tell Cardinal more information in return for water. Cardinal also informs Vi that he knows that her brother Baako Moradi is a diplomat, which unnerves Vi since she has not informed Baako about her work as a spy.
The crashed starship
Vi then narrates the story of how Phasma first encountered Brendol Hux. Following the truce with the Claws, an escape pod crashed in the wasteland near Balder's territory. Seeking to salvage metal, tech, clothes, medicine, food, and blasters, Phasma advocates securing these supplies. However, her brother Keldo is unwilling to risk conflict with their neighbors. Keldo reluctantly lets Phasma lead her warriors to salvage the ship after extracting a promise from Phasma to find a compromise with Balder and to preserve the peace.
Upon reaching the borderlands, Phasma disregards Keldo's orders and orders one of her warriors Gosta to kill a Claw sentry. Upon reaching Balder's plateau, they find the Claws gathered in the presence of five strangers. These strangers include General Hux, three stormtroopers and a black metal droid. Balder allows General Hux to speak and the general speaks through the droid. Brendol offers to provide the people with weapons, food, medicines, and water in return for helping him and his men to reach his fallen ship, which is far away from the Scyre and Claw lands.
Brendol also tells the Claws that he is from the First Order, who are recruiting warriors from all over the galaxy to their cause. He claims that his people are well cared for and well trained. In return for their help, Hux offers them a place in the First Order. Claiming that she is the greatest warrior on Parnassos, Phasma offers to help Brendol find his ship. Balder objects to her presence on the grounds that she is breaking their truce. Phasma appears to accept Balder's offer to trade the Scyre's child Frey in return for upholding the truce but instead stabs Balder in the chest.
As a fight breaks out between the Claws and the Scyre, Phasma convinces Brendol and his troopers to follow them. One of Phasma's warriors Torben carries the wounded Hux on his back. Under Phasma's leadership, the Scyre warriors inflict substantial casualties on the Claws while losing two of their numbers. Despite breaking the truce, Phasma regards this skirmish as a victory since she and her warriors not only killed the Claws' leader but also acquired Brendol and his soldiers.
Returning to the present, Cardinal says the story is not enough and demands more information. When Cardinal asks Vi what angle she is telling it from, she tells him that she has been researching all the big names in the First Order including him. Regarding Cardinal as a principled and honorable soldier, she tells him that he can either use her information to take Captain Phasma down or realize the truth about the First Order and defect. Unable to find any fault in Phasma's actions, Cardinals demands that Vi provide more incriminating information.
Forging an alliance
Returning to Vi's narration, Phasma and her Scyre warriors bring Brendol and his stormtroopers back to their camp. Phasma is impressed by the discipline and training of the First Order stormtroopers. During the journey, Phasma takes the time to ingratiate herself with Brendol, who reveals that he had observed several more habitable landmasses while flying over Parnassos including grasslands, forests, and large compounds. Phasma also learns about the First Order and its goals of bringing stability, progress, and order to the galaxy.
Returning to the Scyre home in the Nautilus, Phasma attempts to placate her brother Keldo with a salvaged leg from Brendol's missing translator droid. Despite the presence of the offworlders, Keldo is upset that Phasma callously broke their peace treaty with the Claws. Keldo is also not impressed by Brendol, disputing the "greatness" of the First Order due to their inability to disable the orbital defense system. Phasma tells her brother that she intends to help Brendol and his men find their ship in exchanges for riches and glory. Keldo is opposed to the idea since he wants to guard the Scyre's meager holdings.
Despite Keldo refusing to approve the recovery mission, a defiant Phasma sneaks out that night with four warriors Gosta, Torben, Carr, Siv, Brendol, and his three troopers. As a snub aimed at Keldo, Phasma also steals the clan's food, tools, and water supplies. Returning to the present, Cardinal finds not fault with Phasma's actions, reasoning that her decision to align herself with the stronger party while eliminating her weaker brother's influence is well in line with the First Order's ways. When Cardinal demands documented proof of Phasma's wrongdoings, Vi manages to negotiate a medpac and more food and water in return.
Cardinal's inner struggles
Before Cardinal leaves the door, Vi asks him if he remembers when Phasma first came to the Finalizer. While walking down the corridor to fetch a medpac and more food and water, Cardinal reflects on the day that he first encountered Phasma, which he regards as the day he lost half of everything he had fought for. Since leaving Jakku, Cardinal had risen up the ranks of the First Order to become the main physical instructor of their stormtrooper program.
On that fateful day, Cardinal recalls being summoned for an impromptu meeting with General Hux. There, he encountered a tall figure dressed in a filthy stormtrooper armor. During the meeting, General Hux divides the stormtrooper training program between Cardinal and Phasma. Cardinal will continue to handle the new and young recruits while Phasma is tasked with training the teenagers and adults. Cardinal is further embittered when Phasma takes over his role as General Hux's personal bodyguard.
While fetching supplies for Vi, he reflects on the young First Order cadets in the mess hall. Cardinal believes that the First Order stands for equality and would end the problem of children dying from starvation, thirst, or exposure. Cardinal also feels uneasy about working with an enemy spy to bring down his rival Phasma but reassures himself that he is doing it for the good of the First Order. Cardinal decides to keep her talking while still maintaining control.
Returning to Vi's interrogation room, Cardinal serves her vitamin packs, which Vi describes as tasting almost like chicken. Cardinal then prods her for incriminating information about Phasma. Vi offers to provide Cardinal with information that would deconstruct the myth of Phasma being the ideal First Order soldiers and most importantly information about Phasma's role in Brendol's death.
A perilous journey
Continuing her story, Siv returns to the journey to Brendol's starship. While loyal to Phasma, Siv struggles with the moral dilemma of stealing her clan's two detraxors. After educating Brendol about the detraxors, Siv and the others learn that the First Order source their food from merchants. After climbing a high mountain, the travelers stumble upon sandy ground where the sand is a mixture of minerals and volcanic ash. During their travels, Carr is bitten in the hand by a golden beetle. At Phasma's advice, the stormtroopers coat their armor with the ashy sand.
As the group continues their journey, Carr's condition worsens and his body swells up. Phasma and Hux's party are also attacked by a group of raiders riding sleds drawn by large lizards. The desert is also inhabited by thousands of beetles, which feast on the flesh and blood of the fallen. Succumbing to the beetle's bite, the swollen Carr's skin abruptly dissolves, collapsing his body into a cloud of water, leaving only blood, shriveled organs, and translucent bones behind. While reflecting on the loss of their fellow warrior, Phasma and her warriors harvest the flesh and skin of the fallen lizards.
While scavenging through the clothes and personal effects of the enemy warriors, Phasma and her warriors discover that they were carrying carved wooden boxes containing the same beetles that had killed Carr. While traveling on a dune, they encounter a pack of skinwolves feasting on a fallen lizard creature. The skinwolves attack the travelers who put up a fight and manage to kill the creatures. Brendol is wounded by a bite to his arm during the attack. As they make camp, Brendol expresses his admiration for Phasma's skills as a warrior and thinks that she will make a suitable leader for the First Order's training program. Brendol's wound deteriorates. Fortunately, the group encounter the protocol droid TB-3, who comes from Terpsichore Station, the Con Star Mining Corporation's former primary mining facility on Parnassos.
The Con Star interregnum
Believing that Phasma and her companions are the company's human employees, TB-3 shelters them and sends Brendol to the medical bay. Since the group lacks credits to pay for Brendol's medical bills, the group are indentured as miners for sixty days. Phasma pretends to accept the terms and attempts to disable the droid supervisor D473. However, they are knocked unconscious by sleeping gas.
Following the failed escaped attempt, Phasma and her companions are forced to work as miners while Brendol recuperates. During the orientation session, Phasma learns that Parnassos was a formerly lush colony world settled by Con Star for mining. While in Con Star's service, Phasma befriends Brendol's stormtroopers PT-2445 ("Pete"), LE-2003 ("Elli"), and HF-0518 ("Huff"). They strike an agreement to obey the droids until Brendol fully recovers and then turn the tables. As Brendol recovers, Phasma share their predicament with him and Brendol decides that the group has to breach the control room in order to disable the droids.
After two work shifts, the group under Brendol's leadership breaches the control room and disable the droids. They also discover that the last human supervisor Dr. Kereg Ryon killed himself a century ago. Siv feels sorry for the droids and says that they only wanted their creators to return. Brendol blames the droid's erratic behavior on a lack of regular programming.
Brendol, Phasma, and the others prepare to leave Terpsichore Station in a salvaged Ground assault vehicle while the stormtroopers ride on speeder bikes. Before embarking on the journey, Siv reflects on her fascination with mechanized technology. Siv also comes to question Phasma's leadership, having witness her kill an ally, defy her brother Keldo, and abandon the Scyre. With little sense of direction, Phasma convinces Brendol to trust him.
Returning to the present, a thirsty and weary Vi stops narrating the story. An impatient Cardinal threatens to harm her brother Baako if she does not yield the information he seeks before General Armitage Hux's arrival on the Absolution.
Prisoners of the Arratu
Continuing the journey, Phasma and her companions approach a city dominated by a tall structure. While approaching the city, they find their path blocked by a ditch full of spikes. The group is then attacked by several repurposed former Con Star GAVS. Following a brief fight, Phasma's warriors, Brendol and the stormtroopers are taken prisoner by warriors calling themselves the "Arratu." Siv takes a dislike to her captors due to their blood lust.
While being driven through the streets of the city, Siv notices a divide between the wealthy elite and the starving commoners. The city is also covered with green plants and inhabited by small winged creatures known as squeeps. The group including Siv, Phasma, and Brendol are thrown into a crowded prison cell inside Arratu Station, a former fabrication plant.
After fending off the other prisoners, the group clear two bunks for the wounded Gosta and Elli, the latter of whom has sustained a broken neck. Lacking the modern medical technology needed to treat Elli, Brendol allows Phasma to strip the comatose Elli of her stormtrooper armor. With Elli crippled, they decide to abandon her to the starving prisoners.
Bread and circuses
The following day, Phasma and her companions are brought by the guardian Vrod to the Arratu, the ruler of the settlement who orders his captives to fight for entertainment. From Vrod, they learn that the Arratu organizes gladiatorial fights to keep his starving subjects entertained. The group are led to an arena where Phasma and Torben are forced to fight a large man named Wranderous without weapons.
After Wranderous beats Phasma and Torben in a fight, Arratu forces Phasma and her companions to fight two skin-wolves. Under Phasma's leadership, they manage to slay the wolves. Impressed by their valor, the Arratu gives his prisoners more comfortable quarters and provides them with food including gelatinous cubes and fruits. Not wanting to waste meat, Phasma and her followers feast on the slain skinwolves.
On the second day, the prisoners are brought back to the arena. Phasma, Torben and Siv fight against Wranderous with swords. Working together, the three defeat Wranderous, mortally wounding him. With the crowd baying for more blood, Phasma convinces Torben to kneel and uses him as a jumping board to leap onto the Arratu's box and kill him. Phasma also kills his four bodyguards to the cheers of the crowd.
Vrod tells Phasma that the crowd want her to be the new Arratu but she rejects the invitation. Vrod tries to change Phasma's mind, telling her that Arratu Station used to be a fertile produce of crops before the climate change as a result of the planet's catastrophe. After killing Vrod in the Arratu's lavish chambers, the group escape Arratu Station in three stolen GAVs, leaving a leaderless city behind.
Entering the "dead lands"
Continuing the journey, Brendol reprimands Phasma for their mistaken decision to travel towards Arratu. Hux sees potential with Phasma as a leader and trainer but counsels her to submit to her superior's orders. In private, Phasma confides with Siv that she does not trust Brendol but regards him as their ticket offworld since the Scyre are dying.
Ahead, the group encounters the Gand Churkk, who is completely covered with the deadly golden beetles. However, Churkk is able to communicate with the beetles. He warns the party against traveling into the "dead lands," which is contaminated with radioactive waste. Churkk shows them the way to the "dead lands" through a hole in the fence.
Shortly, a vengeful Keldo along with the Scyres and Claws catch up with Phasma and Brendol's party. A gun battle breaks out, and Gosta and Churkk are killed in the crossfire. The beetles also feast on the bodies of the fallen. Eluding their pursuers, Phasma and her companions take refuge in an abandoned settlement that includes a former amusement park. Siv and Phasma also used a detraxor to extract nutrients from the bodies of the fallen.
Confrontation with Keldo
As the group travel through the "dead lands" to find Hux's ship, they begin to suffer the effects of radiation sickness. They find Brendol's ship among the ruins of an abandoned Con Star settlement. Brendol surmises that Con Star abandoned Parnassos following a nuclear disaster. Keldo and his followers catch up with them and a skirmish breaks out outside Hux's ship. Phasma, her warriors, and the two remaining stormtroopers fight to protect Brendol at all costs.
During the skirmish, Siv kills Ylva, the mother of Frey. Siv struggles with having to fight members of her own clan. Siv's friend Torben is killed in combat by his own brother. After executing Torben's brother, a grieving Siv uses the detraxor to harvest Torben's nutrients. Brendol's two remaining troopers are also killed but most of the attackers are killed.
Only Keldo remains with Frey, the only child in the Scyre clan. Keldo blames Phasma for destroying the peace they had while Phasma counters that he threw away his chance to save their people. Following a verbal altercation, Phasma shoots Keldo dead. Phasma and Siv also retrieve Frey, believing that the First Order can use "strong children."
Into the stars
Returning to the crash site, Siv teaches Frey how to use the detraxor. Brendol succeeds in contacting the First Order for help. The First Order dispatches a black Star Destroyer and a smaller, blocky ship to pick up Brendol and his rescuers. Phasma and Brendol are greeted by Hux's son Armitage.
Phasma allows Frey to join them but blocks Siv from coming aboard for disobeying her order to kill Wranderous earlier. As an act of mercy, Phasma tells Siv to travel to the nearby Calliope Station, which is stocked with medical supplies. Inside the Con Star station, Siv is treated for radiation sickness by medical droids and recovers. Siv eventually gives birth to Torben's child, which she names Torbi.
Returning to the present, Cardinal demands that Vi continue her story and provide him with information that can be used against Phasma and Brendol's death. Vi offers to provide Cardinal with a cam feed from the day Phasma left Parnassos that had been taken from a stolen First Order transport. She says that the footage and audio recordings can corroborate her account.
Aboard the First Order shuttle, Phasma reassures Frey that the First Order is going to provide them with a home and train them as soldiers. As a display of the First Order's power, Brendol uses the shuttle's laser cannons to destroy the Nautilus and Arratu, destroying Phasma's ties to the past. Phasma is tearful but accepts her new life in the First Order.
The moment of truth
Back in the present, Cardinal expresses surprise that Phasma is capable of crying. He is also shocked that Brendol would massacre civilians on Parnassos despite them not being in a state of rebellion. Vi counters that the First Order steals children and exploits planets for their resources. Cardinal is surprised to learn that Vi knows that Brendol is dead, a closely guarded First Order secret.
Cardinal confides his feelings of jealousy towards Phasma, whom Brendol favored. Vi also tells Cardinal that Siv and her child are alive and have been living at Calliope Station for the past ten years. When Vi asks Cardinal about the official account of Brendol's death, Cardinal tells her that the official reports claimed he had died of an unknown malady.
Vi tells Cardinal that Resistance slicers obtained an old medical droid and discovered that Brendol had succumbed to the same symptoms that other victims of the Parnassos golden beetle had exhibited: swelling up before collapsing into liquid. Vi suggests that Phasma poisoned Brendol in order to eliminate one of the last remaining people who knew about her past on Parnassos.
While Cardinal struggles to accept this news, his suspicions are confirmed when he recalls that Frey died during a training exercise while under the care of Phasma. Cardinal asks if Armitage knows about Brendol's death but Vi is unable to offer answers. Deciding to confront Armitage, Cardinal knocks Vi unconscious by shocking her with the interrogation chair.
The heart of darkness
While Iris keeps watch over Vi, Cardinal travels up the turbolift to Brendol's former suite, which is now occupied by Armitage Hux. Inside, Cardinal warns the younger Hux that Phasma cannot be trusted and that she murdered Brendol with a beetle from Parnassos. When Cardinal admits he does not have a beetle to prove his case, Armitage reveals that he allowed Phasma to assassinate his father. Armitage then orders Cardinal to keep this information secret, warning him that he can arrange an "accident" if Cardinal does not remain loyal to him and the First Order.
Following the meeting, Armitage decides that Cardinal has outlived his usefulness. He orders Officer Bolander to make changes to the guest list for today's assembly. Armitage toys with informing his ally Phasma that Cardinal knows of their secret. However, he decides to let their conflict play out since Cardinal has admitted that he has no evidence and Phasma is good at making things disappear.
For the first time since the death of his mother, Cardinal feels lost in his life, having learned that Phasma and Armitage conspired to murder his mentor Brendol. In the grips of despair, Cardinal experiences a flashback to the past when Brendol presented him with his custom red armor for being an exemplary cadet. As a sign of respect, Brendol had even served Cardinal a glass of water, a break with First Order protocol.
Retreating to his quarters, Cardinal seeks comfort with a happabore carving, a relic from his previous life on Jakku as a boy named Archex. Cardinal also struggles with the prospect of having to kill someone, something he has never done before. Concealing his feelings, Cardinal tries to carry out his usual eating and training routine. Preoccupied, he assigns SC-4044 with taking charge of his cadets. Exiting the cantina, Cardinal encounters Phasma but suppresses the urge to kill her.
Depths of despair
As Vi awakes on the interrogation chair, Cardinal returns and tells her that Armitage and Phasma conspired to murder Brendol. Aware that Phasma is a formidable opponent, Cardinal seeks Vi's help in defeating her. Vi recounts another of Siv's stories about Phasma and Keldo. Fifteen years ago, Phasma and Keldo were part of a small family group that inhabited the Nautilus, fighting off Scyre and Claw raids.
With her family unwilling to give up their ancestral home or share it with other groups, Phasma conspires with the Scyre to kill her own family with the exception of Keldo. Before the fight, Phasma maims Keldo by stabbing his calf. As the sole survivors of their family, Phasma and a reluctant Keldo pledge fealty to Egil, leader of the Scyres. As part of their induction ceremony, Siv and her mother Vala use a detraxor to spread a salve derived from their fallen family members on Phasma and Keldo's faces, completing their induction to Scyres.
Returning to the present, Cardinal tells Vi that he won't be able to use this story to convince his First Order superiors of Phasma's treachery since she has done nothing to betray the First Order. Vi warns Cardinal that he won't win against Phasma since she is willing to do anything to survive including killing her family.
Having gained Cardinal's trust and respect, Vi outfits him with one of Phasma's knives, which is laced with a poisonous lichen from Parnassos, and a plastoid case containing a gold beetle. Before Cardinal left to present this evidence to the First Order's senior officers, he turned down an offer from Vi to join the Resistance. However, he left the interrogation room's door unlocked.
Cardinal and Iris attempt to follow Armitage, Phasma, and the senior officers into the assembly room but find that the door code has been changed. Armitage tells Cardinal that his presence is not required and orders him to resume his duties. Following dinner, a dejected Cardinal spent the evening getting drunk on liquor.
In the morning, Cardinal takes a hangover packet for breakfast before resolving to confront Phasma. Cardinal finds Phasma training with his simulations in the simulation room. Phasma compares Cardinal's simulations and Armitage's automated regimens unfavorably to real combat. Phasma is unperturbed when Cardinal accuses her of turning his cadets into killers, countering that the First Order needs killers in order to achieve supremacy.
A fight breaks out when Cardinal accuses Phasma of murder. As the two parry with batons, the two trade insults. Cardinal manages to tackle Phasma to the ground and tries to stab her with the poisoned knife but is unable to penetrate her armor. Phasma then turns the tables on Cardinal, flipping him onto his back. Phasma then stabs him with the knife in the side of his chest, under his shoulder pauldron.
Realizing that the knife came from Parnassos, Phasma tells Cardinal she will return to the planet to eliminate any surviving witnesses. As she boasts of her skill of tampering with security cameras, Phasma plunges the blade deeper to his side. She then destroys Iris with her blaster before killing the golden beetle.
Despite the loss of blood, Cardinal tries to reach for his blaster. Phasma anticipates this and kicks him in the hand. As Cardinal bleeds, Phasma removes her helmet and shows her face, revealing a woman with pale skin, gold hair, and dark green strips under her eyes. Standing over Cardinal, Phasma tells him that she has embraced her identity as a killer. She then leaves the room, intending to let Cardinal bleed to death.
Rescued from death
Having escaped the interrogation room, Vi steals a set of stormtrooper armor and finds the grievously wounded Cardinal. With Cardinal deteriorating from the effects of the poisoned knife, Vi evacuates him in a hovergurney. She intends to put him in a medically induced coma for their journey to Calliope Station, which hosts an advanced medbay. Before injecting Cardinal with an anesthetic, Vi tells him of her promise to return for Siv and her daughter Torbi.
Becoming Captain Phasma
In a flashback scene, Captain Phasma returns to Parnassos a year after joining the First Order. On the planet's surface, she traps a Parnassos beetle in an ammo box, intending to use the creature one day. She then approaches Brendol's wrecked ship, which was Palpatine's former Naboo yacht. Using her tools, Phasma tears the ship apart, harvesting its chrome plates.
Phasma then travels in her TIE fighter over the ocean to Cleo Station, an abandoned Con Star factory used to make mining equipment. Though Cleo Station is more lush than the Scyre lands, she discovers that the inhabitants had poisoned themselves after a famine destroyed their crops. She then uses the factory's machinery to forge the yacht's chrome plates into her distinct armor.
- "There is a playlist. That's a big part of my process…Big surprise, it's two Star Wars soundtracks and the Mad Max: Fury Road soundtrack."
- ―Delilah S. Dawson
Delilah S. Dawson used a Spotify playlist while writing Phasma. It consisted mostly of music from Star Wars and Mad Max: Fury Road. Once she got going, she'd put on "violent" films on Netflix as inspiration. She was surprised how unstoppable Phasma felt and how ruthless she could be, how dark she was. Dawson didn't want to kill off the main characters, but realized Phasma had to.
A subtitle, Blood and Chrome, was considered for the novel, but it was dropped early on.
- ISBN 9781524796310; September 1, 2017; Del Rey; US hardcover
- ISBN 9781524797508; September 1, 2017; Del Rey; US hardcover, Barnes & Noble Exclusive Edition
- ISBN 9781524797515; September 1, 2017; Del Rey; US hardcover, Target Exclusive Edition
- ISBN 9781524797522; September 1, 2017; Del Rey; US hardcover, Walmart Exclusive Edition
- ISBN 9781524797478; August 1, 2017; Del Rey; Signed edition
- ISBN 9781524796327; September 1, 2017; Del Rey; US eBook
- ISBN 9781524796334; April 24, 2018; Del Rey; US paperback
- ISBN 9781787460010; April 24, 2018; Arrow Books Ltd.; UK paperback
|Organizations and titles||Sentient species||Vehicles and vessels||Weapons and technology||Miscellanea|
Organizations and titles
Vehicles and vessels
Weapons and technology
Notes and references
- Phasma takes place a few weeks before the beginning of Galaxy's Edge: Black Spire, which begins during the events of Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens, which is dated to 34 ABY by Star Wars: Galactic Atlas. "Resistance Revisited"—Star Wars Insider 190 establishes that the events of Star Wars Resistance Season One take place thirty years after the Battle of Endor, which corresponds to 34 ABY according to Star Wars: Galactic Atlas, and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Visual Dictionary places the beginning of Star Wars Resistance half a year prior to Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens. Therefore, the year 34 ABY begins at least half a year prior to Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens, and since a few weeks is shorter than half a year, Phasma must be set between "The Recruit" and Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens, thereby placing it in 34 ABY.
- Official Star Wars Publishing Q&A thread - Jedi Council Forums
- Phasma, Walmart Exclusive Edition