Star Wars: Knight Errant: Deluge is the second story arc in the Star Wars: Knight Errant comic series. It occurs in 1032 BBY in the Republic Dark Age during the last century of the New Sith Wars and is largely narrated through the point of view of the Jedi Knight Kerra Holt, a knight errant Jedi who operated in Sith territory. This story arc deals with Kerra's return to her homeworld of Aquilaris Minor following the events of the novel Knight Errant. She becomes caught up in a complex three-way power struggle involving the Sith Lord Daiman, the Hutt lord Zodoh, and the Galactic Republic's Grace Command with significant ramifications for the wider Grumani sector. A substantial part of the plot also deals with Kerra's relationships with her old childhood friend Joad Kreel and the Republic starfighter squadron Captain Jenn Devaad.
Deluge was first released on August 17, 2011 and ran through to December 21, 2011. It consisted of five issues and its script was developed by John Jackson Miller. Deluge was subsequently collected as a trade paperback comic by Dark Horse Comics on May 30, 2012.
In answer to a distress call, Kerra returns to her Sith-controlled homeworld for a daring rescue... but her arrival on the planet coincides with an ambush from a Hutt mastermind! The clash with his invasion and a number of other unexpected surprises place Kerra's small-scale rescue into a hot spot. She has to troubleshoot fast-and, as always, alone!
During the Republic Dark Age, large areas of the Outer Rim Territories were controlled by various Sith Lords. Following its conquest by the Chagras Hegemony in 1042 BBY, the planet Aquilaris Minor in the Grumani sector was ruled by a string of Sith. By 1032 BBY, Aquilaris had come under Lord Daiman, who exploited the world for its sea life. Aquilaris was also the homeworld of the Jedi Knight Kerra Holt, who had devoted herself to a knight errant's mission of waging war on the Sith. Responding to a distress transmission from the Seacroppers' Guild, Kerra returned to her homeworld only to discover that it was being invaded by the forces of the Hutt crime lord Zodoh, a new player in the Grumani sector.
During the initial onslaught, Zodoh's forces quickly wiped out Daiman's weak defenses. In the midst of the fighting, Kerra infiltrated the spaceport at Capital Cay in a food transport and slew the Daimanate garrison commander. She arrived at the Seacroppers' dormitory where she met an old man named Padgett and her childhood friend Joad Kreel, who has become addicted to the narcotic spice known as Deluge. She soon discovered that much of the Seacroppers' Guild had become affected by Deluge, rendering them in an apathetic and disinterested state. Unable to get them to escape, Kerra also learnt that the distress signal was actually a code message requesting more Deluge. Meanwhile, Zodoh deployed a Stormdriver, a large starship equipped with weaponized vaporators capable of draining moisture from the surrounding atmosphere and creating torrential storms.
The Stormdriver wrecked havoc on Capital Cay's seaport. Kerra distracted the Stormdriver's crew by firing a blaster at it. The Stormdriver was subsequently destroyed by Fire Lotus-class starfighters from Grace Command, a paramilitary relief organization associated with the Galactic Republic. Zodoh orders a tactical withdrawal while Devil Squadron occupied Capital Cay where they were welcomed by the local population as liberators. The Devils' commander Captain Jenn Devaad established contact with Kerra, promising to distribute food and medical aid to the population. Kerra is relieved to have found some allies in her fight against the Sith.
Meanwhile on his fighter carrier Voracious, Zodoh issues an ultimatum to the local Sith Lords via hologram, offering to become their main supplier of slaves and munitions if they were willing to cooperate with him against Daiman. If they refused, he threatened severe consequences. He then conferred with his advisor Oon Garat who reported that the damaged Stormdriver had gathered the necessary data on Aquilaris prior to its destruction. Zodoh then ordered her to send a courier to the Hutt capital of Nal Hutta, promising that the Sith would be working for him by the time he had finished with the Grumani sector.
On Vellas Pavo, Daiman ordered his forces on Aquilaris not to surrender. However, Devil Squadron wiped out all Sith resistance. Kerra herself participated in this campaign, borrowing a Fire Lotus-class starfighter from Devil Squadron and shooting down a Daimanate starfighter. Following the battle, Grace Command began distributing food and medical supplies to the Aquilarians with Kerra assisting in the relief work. Kerra also developed a close friendship with Captain Jenn and learnt more about Grace Command's relief missions. Devil Squadron worked in cooperation with Grace Command by providing a military foothold in Sith Space for it to provide relief assistance to impoverished worlds.
In response to the widespread epidemic of Deluge addiction among the population, Grace Command arranged for several serious cases to be evacuated on the transport Mother Grace for medical treatment on Alderaan, the headquarters of Grace Command. Devil Squadron also distributed time-locked food cases which would only open once they had departed. One of the recipients was Kerra's childhood friend Joad. Kerra also got a place within Devil Squadron since one of the pilots Yades was rotating with the transport crew. While Jenn is eager to welcome Kerra aboard, some of her crew particularly Vahss expressed their concerns that Kerra would learn about their secrets. However, Jenn assured them that Kerra as a "product" of Vannar Treece would be too focused on the mission to notice anything suspicious and that she would never have to know the rest. However, Joad eavesdrops on their conversation and tries to alert Kerra but she still thought he was under the effects of the spice.
After escorting Mother Grace to its hyperspace jump point, Devil Squadron encountered Zodoh's Intruder-class starfighter which led them on a wild pursuit. Despite Kerra's call for caution, Jenn was seeking revenge against Zodoh for the harsh treatment she and her crew endured under the Hutt's captivity. Devil Squadron subsequently enters into a trap and is then attacked by Zodoh's fighter-carrier Voracious and Intruder starfighters. At that point, a fleet of Stormdrivers exited hyperspace and Zodoh announced about his intentions to create an artificial global flood on Aquilaris Minor over the intercomm. Zodoh also boasted of his intentions to subdue his Sith rivals by using the Stormdrivers to flood their worlds.
On Darkknell, much of Daiman's military forces had become affected by the spice Deluge. In response, he ordered the culling of these addicts from his starfighter corps before his Sith relatives found out about it. Meanwhile, Kerra Holt disengaged from the dogfight and flew back to Aquilarius, intending to save her people from the coming storm. At the end of the skirmish, the remaining members of Devil Squadron were captured by Voracious's tractor beam and their crew were disarmed and taken captive. Zodoh meets with a captive Captain Jenn, offering to spare her crew if she agreed to acquire the stocks of Deluge spice on Aquilaris.
Meanwhile, Kerra tries to organize an evacuation on Capital Cay to move the locals to higher grounds. Kerra faced an insurmountable logistical problem due to the lack of sufficient numbers of airspeeders and boats. Many of the Seacroppers also remained in a drug-induced state while their submersibles were in a decrepit state. While visiting the submersible docking yards, Kerra encountered a despondent and dejected Joad and tried unsuccessfully to persuade him to help with the evacuation. Out of frustration, Kerra kicked a food container open only to discover that it contained only Deluge spice. Kerra quickly realized that Devil Squadron were actually spice dealers who were deliberately distributing Deluge among occupied populations.
Kerra encountered Jenn in the spaceport, forcing several Aquilarians including Padgett at gunpoint to load containers of spice onto her shuttle. After overpowering and disarming her, Kerra confronted the squadron captain about the Deluge spice. Jenn revealed that Grace Command was actually a cover for Baron Lemayne's Operation Deluge which involved undermining the Sith war effort by inundating Sith-controlled Space with Deluge spice. While it succeeded in weakening Sith manpower, it also affected entire local populations. Jenn also justified her actions by stating she wanted to save the lives of her crew. Jenn also revealed that her hatred towards civilians in Sith Space stemmed from civilians refusing to shelter her and other survivors of an ill fated Republic task force dispatched to Dalaang. Unable to reconcile their differences, Jenn leaves on a shuttle with the Deluge supplies to return to Zodoh's flagship, leaving Kerra behind with the civilians.
Zodoh's Stormdrivers unleashed a global flood on Aquilaris Minor which flooded large areas of the planet within hours. Kerra led a desperate evacuation effort, using her Fire Lotus-class starfighter to carry several civilians to higher ground. Kerra also encountered Joad Kreel who had realized the error of his ways and abandoned Deluge spice for good. Kerra then tried to convince Joad to assist her with the evacuation effort, saying that they could get away this time. However, Joad answered that it was already too late for that and dived into the stormy waters to Kerra's horror.
Aboard his flagship Voracious, Zodoh hosted another holoconference with the local Sith Lords, announcing his successful Aquilarian test demonstration. Zodoh intended to drown all of Lord Daiman's worlds, beginning with his capital Darkknell. He managed to persuade the other Sith Lords to keep Daiman's forces busy at the frontiers in return for becoming his trade partners in the near future. Zodoh also planned to use Jenn's supply of Deluge spice to synthesize his own stock. He would then lace food supplies with the narcotic as part of his strategy to weaken resistance to his conquest of the Grumani sector. Jenn then demanded that Zodoh release her crew only to learn that the Hutt had killed them all by releasing them through the airlock into space. However, Jenn had a trick up her sleeve. She had rigged the food containers with time-rigged explosives, and triggered a series of explosions which created extensive interior damage to the Voracious. Jenn took opportunity of the chaos to escape on a twin-seater Hutt starfighter.
Jenn's explosions disrupted the coordination of the fleet of Stormdrivers, causing the artificial rains and storms to stop. Meanwhile, Kerra had managed to evacuate the civilians to Tarrah Hill, the highest point on Aquilaris Minor. During an eleventh hour moment, a submersible crewed by Joad surfaced and they were able to evacuate the refugees to an underwater harvester station beneath the ocean floor. Due to the large volume of refugees, the submersible had to make several trips. Padgett also offered the assistance of the Seacroppers in opening the sea tunnels beneath the harvesting station. By morning, Kerra's evacuation efforts had saved the lives of thousands of Aquilarians. Jenn was able to locate Kerra's submersible and reunite with her, revealing Zodoh's plans to flood Darknnell, a heavily populated world home to billions of sentient beings. Determined to reconcile their differences and to work together to defeat a common threat, the women departed on their twin-seater Hutt starfighter.
Zodoh's fleet of Stormdrivers invaded Darkknell, overwhelming the weak Daimanate defenses. The Stormdrivers quickly flooded large areas of the planet including Daiman's Sanctum Celestial fortress in the capital city of Xakrea, causing extensive damage. Despite all seeming lost with even his Sith relatives collaborating against him, Daiman refused to concede defeat by claiming his universe "had vast resources everywhere and defenders no one would ever expect." Kerra and Jenn arrived in the midst of the space battle in their Hutt twin-seater starfighter and entered the hangar bay of Zodoh's flagship Voracious. Kerra infiltrated the Voracious while Jenn engaged Zodoh's starfighter defenses.
Kerra succeeded in infiltrating the control dome where the Stormdrivers were being coordinated. There, she was attacked by Zodoh, who personally dueled with her. Unlike other Hutts, Zodoh was physically fit and interested in combat. Zodoh was able to gain the upper hand and was about to kill Kerra when the dome was attacked by Jenn's starfighter, exposing the interior to zero gravity space. After rescuing Kerra, Jenn fired a volley which destroyed the Voracious, throwing the Stormdrivers into chaos and turning the tide of the battle. Zodoh survives the battle but is captured by Daiman who personally executes him in the presence of his Sith relatives, who were present via hologram. Meanwhile, Kerra and Jenn escape back to Aquilaris.
By then, the floods were receding and the planet was drying up. Kerra also reconciled with both Joad and Jenn. Under the leadership of Padgett and Joad, Aquilaris Minor with its extensive underwater harvesting facilities would become a base for refugees fleeing Sith Space to the safety of the Galactic Republic. Jenn also worked out a plan to sabotage Operation Deluge by claiming that she had obtain a contract for distributing Deluge on Aquilaris. She would then dump the Deluge spice into hyperspace and then use the same transport to ferry refugees into the Republic. As a gesture of friendship, Jenn also gave Kerra her own Fire Lotus-class starfighter, to save her having to hitch rides throughout Sith Space. The two women then parted with Jenn returning to the Republic and Kerra continuing her knight errant missions into Sith territory.
- Knight Errant: Deluge 1
- Knight Errant: Deluge 2
- Knight Errant: Deluge 3
- Knight Errant: Deluge 4
- Knight Errant: Deluge 5
Notes and references