- "Have you considered our requests?"
"I have given your request the thought it deserves. Kill them."
- ―The human mining negotiator and Captain Phasma
Thirty years after the Battle of Endor, the miners at a First Order–owned mining colony in Pressy's Tumble staged a strike to protest the harsh living and working conditions there. Claiming that the New Republic had stirred dissent and chaos among the miners, Captain Phasma led a contingent of stormtroopers to the mining colony and executed the negotiators. FN-2187 was present at the strike but did not open fire on the negotiators, leading Phasma to give him another chance to prove himself on Jakku.
About thirty years after the Battle of Endor, the First Order established a refinery complex in the Pressy's Tumble asteroid field in the Pressylla system. Pressy's Tumble was an artificial asteroid that had been created when a enterprising mining engineered exploded an ore-rich moon in order to facilitate the extraction of the ores. The refinery complex was based in the largest of these asteroid fragments and was connected to the Imperial remnant's efforts to restore Imperial rule to the galaxy.
To operate the mine, the First Order employed a large number of civilian miners. Most of these miners were from various alien species including Talz, Grans, Rodians, Abednedos, and Narquois. The miners endured harsh and dangerous working conditions with many suffering injuries from the extraction of ores. They were also malnourished and many were in poor health. To protest their harsh working and living conditions, the miners staged a strike.
The First Order dismissed the miners' grievances and decided to send stormtroopers to "restore order" at Pressy's Tumble. Captain Phasma told the stormtroopers of FN Corps that New Republic agents had infiltrated the mining operations and were sabotaging equipment and creating dissent among the miners. Rather than address the miners' grievances, the stormtrooper's mission was to end the strike, get the miners back on schedule, and to prevent any further delays.
Breaking the strikeEdit
For this law and order operation, the First Order deployed four teams of stormtroopers including three fire-teams. One of the stormtroopers who participated in this operation was FN-2187 ("Eight-Seven"), who would later defect and join the Resistance. He was accompanied by his comrades FN-2000 ("Zeroes"), FN-2199 ("Nines"), and FN-2003 ("Slip"). While all of the stormtroopers carried live ammunition and grenades, one of the fire-teams was equipped with shock staffs and neurocage nets; weapons that were designed for crowd control. Upon landing in the refinery, the stormtroopers encountered no resistance.
After completing a sweep, a sergeant ordered FN-2187 to take his fire-team up to the entrance of the landing bay and guard their transport shuttles. As they entered the refinery complex, they saw several worker droids hovering over the machinery. They also witnessed several emaciated and sickly miners watching from the scaffolding. Terrified of the stormtroopers, the miners did not make eye contact with them. Since the miners did not attack them, FN-2187 and his comrades did not attack them but remaining standing guard at the landing bay for almost three hours.
About three hours later, Captain Phasma contacted FN-2187 and ordered him and his team to proceed to level alpha-seven-seven, room ought-three. She then sent a cadet fire-team to relieve FN-2187 and his men. After consulting the map that he had downloaded into his in-armor computer, FN-2187 and his team proceeded to the room. After taking a lift, the stormtroopers entered the room where they found Captain Phasma and the four mining negotiators: a human, a Rodian, an Abednedo, and a Narquois.
When the human negotiator asked Phasma whether she had considered their requests, Phasma ordered FN-2187 and his fire-team to kill the miners. Slip was the first to open fire, followed by Zeroes and Nines. Sevens took aim at the Abednedo with his blaster. Feeling pity and compassion for the Abednedo miner, FN-2187 was unable to pull the trigger. In the end, Slip shot the Abednedo dead. The shooting of the negotiators effectively ended the strike and enable the First Order to restore order to the refinery.
The execution of the mining negotiators effectively ended the strike at Pressy's Tumble. As a result, operations were able to continue at a pace deemed acceptable by the First Order. Due to their actions in killing the negotiators, Phasma formally initiated FN-2187 and his fellow cadets FN-2003, FN-2000, and FN-2199 into the First Order's stormtrooper corps. The four stormtroopers were invited by veterans to share a meal in the galley aboard their Star Destroyer. While Slip, Zeroes, and Nines were delighted to be the guests of honor at a meal, FN-2187 was despondent about having to kill unarmed civilians.
He declined to attend the meal claiming that he had target practice. There, he tried to overcome this hesitancy by taking part in a simulation that pitted him against New Republic soldiers. However, Sevens was unable to bring himself to fire upon civilians. Captain Phasma was also concerned with FN-2187's reluctance to kill and decided to assign him on a mission to Jakku in order to place him in a live fire scenario where he would be forced to kill. Despite his indoctrination, he failed to kill any combatants at Tuanul village. He then decided to abandon the First Order by helping the Resistance pilot Poe Dameron escape the Star Destroyer Finalizer.
Behind the scenesEdit
The Stike at Pressy's Tumble first appeared in Greg Rucka's Before the Awakening, a junior novel that served as a prequel to the events of The Force Awakens movie; which premiered on December 18, 2015. The strike is told from the point of view of Finn, one of the three main protagonists of The Force Awakens. Before the Awakening was intended to provide a background to the lives of Finn and the two other major characters Rey and Poe Dameron.