The High Republic: Path of Deceit is a young-adult novel written by Tessa Gratton and Justina Ireland. It was published as part of the second phase of the multimedia project Star Wars: The High Republic by Disney–Lucasfilm Press on October 4, 2022.

Publisher's summary[]

Set in the world of the High Republic, 150 years before the storytelling of Phase I, an era of change brings new hopes and possibilities…but also new dangers.

The Outer Rim planet Dalna has become the focus of a Jedi investigation into a stolen Force artifact, and Zallah Macri and her Padawan, Kevmo Zink, arrive on the pastoral world to follow up on a possible connection to a Dalnan missionary group called the Path of the Open Hand. Members of the Path believe that the Force must be free and should not be used by anyone, not even the Jedi. One such believer is Marda Ro, a young woman who dreams of leaving Dalna to spread word of the Path throughout the galaxy.

When Marda and Kevmo meet, their connection is instantaneous and electric―until Marda discovers Kevmo is a Jedi. But Kevmo is so kind and eager to learn more about the Path, that she hopes she can convince him of the rightness of her beliefs. What Marda doesn't realize is that the leader of the Path, a charismatic woman known only as the Mother, has an agenda of her own, and it is one that can never coexist peacefully with the Jedi.

In order to follow her faith, Marda may have to choose to become her new friend's worst enemy….

Plot summary[]

IT is a time of great exploration. In an effort
to unite the galaxy, the Chancellors of the
Republic, working alongside the courageous
Jedi Knights, have dispatched
dozens of PATHFINDER TEAMS into the
farthest reaches of the Outer Rim.

But it is also a time of great uncertainty.
Communication is unreliable, and tall tales
of mysterious planets and monstrous
creatures abound. Prospectors and
pirates roam the frontier, and the
worlds of Eiram and E'ronoh are locked

And on the far-off planet of DALNA,
a new threat to the galaxy is
beginning to emerge….

The treasure hunter[]

Radicaz Dobbs lands his pleasure yacht Scupper in the settlement of Ferdan on the planet Dalna where he is greeted by the Herald Werth Plouth, a member of the cult Path of the Open Hand. The Herald takes Dobbs to the Path's compound where he meets with the cult's leader Elecia Zeveron, the Mother. Dobbs had been hired by the Path to collect artefacts connected to The Force as part of their goal of "liberating" the Force. The Mother wants Dobbs to steal three artifacts known as the Rod of Ages, Rod of Seasons and the Rod of Daybreak. While most of the artifacts that Dobbs have brought are not of interest to the Path, she takes an interest in a large purple egg which is strong with the Force. Pleased, the Mother tells Dobbs that she will work with him.

The Jedi[]

On the Outer Rim frontier world of Tiikae, Jedi Padawan Kevmo Zink joins forces with Jedi Master Zallah Macri, Jedi Knight Azlin Rell and their droid C-9 to divert a herd of grass sharks away from a settlement. Since the beasts use the path of their planet's magnetic field to guide their migration path, C-9 and Rell use a reconfigured comms beacon to divert their path. Later, the Jedi receive news that the Rod of Seasons has been stolen from the Hynestian Queen, who requests Jedi assistance. Since they are close to Hynestia, Master Zallah decides to lead the response.

Followers of the Path[]

Back on Dalna, the Path cultists Marda Ro and Jezra'lin assists the Kessarine mother Ferize as her six hatchlings emerge from their eggs in the underground complex beneath the compound. After assisting with the hatching, Marda joins her cousin Yana Ro in bathing in a nearby river. The two discuss the Path of the Open Hand's practice of "liberating" Force artifacts. While Marda believes that they are liberating the artefacts from those who would abuse them, Yana thinks they are stealing. Marda trusts that the Mother is right and volunteers to accompany her on a missionary trip. The Mother declines her offer.

While the Elders comfort Marda, Yana visits Cincey's work hut, which serves as the Path's communications centre. She meets with Cincey, her girlfriend Kor Plouth and Treze to discuss plans to steal a Force dagger from a Republic storage locker in Port Haileap. The dagger is said to be capable of cutting someone off from the Living Force. Kor wants to be him before her hatchlings' Naming day.

An interfaith encounter[]

Later, Kevmo and Master Zallah arrive in Ferdan on a skiff. After landing at the spaceport, Kevmo heads to the marketplace to acquire supplies. In the market, he encounters Marda and nine Path children (known as "Littles"), who are giving away flowers and promoting their faith at the table. Though he suspects the Path were responsible for the Hynestian heist, Kevmo tries to befriend the group and conversed with Marda and the "Littles" about the Force. Both Kevmo and Marda find themselves attracted to one another despite their different backgrounds.

Marda got one of the "Littles" named Simi to give Kevmo a river rose. When Kevmo uses his Force powers to lift the rose, Marda and the children react with horror due to the Path's ban against using the Force. Marda engages in a theological debate with Kevmo. She argues that the Force is not a tool and that using it upsets its balance. Kevo disagrees, arguing that being able to use the Force is a natural gift. Marda believes that the Jedi are trying to control the Force and bend it to their will. Kevmo tries to explain the Jedi side of the argument but Marda begins to usher the children away from the marketplace.

After leaving the marketplace,the Littles discuss the Force and their encounter with the Jedi. When the children Utalir, Jerid and Simi discuss Jedi, Marda diverts their attention to the construction grounds of the Gaze Electric, a massive starship that will serve as the mobile temple and home of the Path of the Open Hand. She takes the opportunity to remind the Littles that they are not above the Force and propagates the Path's narrative that the Jedi steal and abuse the Force by wielding their powers.

Heist at Port Haileap[]

Elsewhere, Yana accompanies fellow Children of the Open Hand Kor, Treze, and Cincey aboard the Harmony to Port Haileap. After landing, Treze distracts the dockmaster by pretending to ask for permission for a spot to host a giving station. He then kills the dockmaster. Meanwhile, Yana uses her slicing skills to unlock the door to a warehouse for confiscated goods. Kor then retrieves a Force-sensitive object from Moraband from the warehouse. The group then return to the Harmony where the getaway pilot Cincey flies them and the "liberated" cargo back to Dalna. Yana is aware that Kor has some Force-sensitivity but that her father did not send her away to Ferdan as was the usual custom for Path children with Force-sensitivity.

Two faiths[]

Meanwhile, Master Zallah finds accommodation with Lady Jara, the elderly owner of a lodging house. Kevmo arrives and relates his encounter with the Path of the Open Hand at the marketplace to Master Zallah. Zallah disagrees with the Path's claim that the Jedi misuse the Force, explaining that the Jedi have served and communed with the Force for millennia. Zallah tells Kevmo that Jara is wary of the Path, which she considers a cult. Despite the theological differences between the Jedi and the Path, Zallah advises Kevmo to learn more about the Path and attempt to make amends with Marda.

Later, Marda takes part in a naming ceremony for Ferize and her partners' Er Dal and Fel Ix's five hatchlings. In accordance with Kessarine culture, the Kessarines do not assign genders to their children but confirm that two of the hatchlings are egg bearers or girls. The Mother presides over the ceremony and sings a song explaining how the Path's founder Sachar Rold, a former priest of the Guardians of the Whills, came to Dalna and established the Path of the Open Hand. The Mother tells her story about coming to Dalna as a refugee and joining the Path. She later claims to have experienced a spiritual encounter with a being of pure Force who taught her how to be in harmony and union with the Force.

Following the ceremony, Marda tells her cousin Yana that the Mother wants to speak with her about her mission to Port Haileap. While Marda still believes in the teachings of the Mother, Yana confides that she has been experiencing doubts about her faith. Marda also tells Yana about her encounter with the Jedi Kevmo Zink. While she was repulsed by his "misuse" of the Force, she confides that she is infatuated with the male Padawan but believes that he was flirting with her. Yana believes that the Jedi are on Dalna for espionage. Following a conversation, Yana suggests that Marda invite Kevmo to the Path's compound to show him the ways of their faith. Putting her plans into action, Marda travels to the Jedi's lodging house and invites Kevmo to their compound, which Master Zallah accepts.

Yana also updates her girlfriend Kor about Marda's encounter with Kevmo. Following a Force vision, the Mother convinces her best benefactor Regnar Pulip to fund Kor's mother Opari Plouth's illness. After briefing the Mother about their successful operation to steal the Force dagger, Yana briefs the leader about Marda's encounter with the Jedi Padawan Kevmo. While the Herald Werth Plouth objects to Yana's idea of getting Marda to invite the Jedi into their compound, the Mother backs Yana, saying that it would be an opportunity to convince the Jedi that the Path are a peaceful community and leave, allowing the cult to conceal their secret activities. During the meeting, Yana and Kor notice the Mother's egg-shaped "jewel", which creates a disturbance in the Force for Kor. Kor also confides in Yana that she feels she doesn't belong to the Path and that she doesn't want her mother Opari near the Mother's "jewel."

The stolen hyperspace route[]

On Hon-Tallos, Sunshine meets with Republic Pathfinder Alonso San Tekka, who had leaked information about a hyperspace route to the mysterious Planet X at the edge of Wild Space. After San Tekka sells a datacard containing a copy of the route to him, Sunshine leads him to his starship Scupper at the docks. When San Tekka says that the jewels he promised were lost, Sunshine kills Alonso with his blaster. After ascertaining the authenticity of San Tekka's route, Sunshine arranges for DZ-23 to throw the Pathfinder's body once they have reached space. He also informs the Mother about the hyperspace route job and promises to help uncover information about a lost cousin on Jedha. He resolves to find the Rod of Daybreak for the Mother.

Guests of the Path[]

After meditating, Kevmo practises his lightsaber with Master Zallah at Lady Jara's guesthouse. The two discuss the purposes of their mission: searching for the Hynestian Rod of Seasons and making connections with other Force-using groups such as the Path of the Open Hand. Zallah also counsels her Palawan not to let his feelings use him and to moderate their use of the Force amongst the Path.

Together, the master and apprentice visit the Path's compound, where they are given a guided tour by Marda. She shows them their communal garden, explaining that they make minimal use of droids and technology in accordance with their beliefs. Marda also briefs the Jedi about the Path's organizational structure. While she shows them the Path's buildings, she explains that the underground levels are for elderly and young members. Marda also shows them the Gaza Electric, which is still undergoing construction. Marda explains that the starship will serve as the community's mobile interstellar home. When pressed by Kevmo, Marda admits that the Path also stores several Force artifacts, which they guard securely since they believe that people should not be tempted to use the Force.

While Zallah meets with the Elders, Kevmo spends time with Marda, who takes her to a second favorite place, a sunrise tree overlooking a nearby river. The two young people confide their feelings for each other. Marda takes the opportunity to try and convert Kevmo to her view of the Force. Using a plant and sunlight analogy, Kevmo argues that the Force can be used for good purposes. Marda also says that the Path lives in harmony with the Force, believing that they don't take things. Despite their religious differences, Marda respects Kevmo for standing up for his beliefs and worldview.

Kevmo then steers the conversation towards the topic of Force artifacts. Marda, who is unaware of her community's theft of Force artifacts, says that they only accept artifacts that were freely given or willed by the Force. When Kevmo asks about the stolen Rod of Seasons, Marda angrily insists that her people did not steal the Rod. Kevmo says that they will continue searching and promises to leave Dalna to continue their search.

After the two Jedi leave the Dalna compound, Elder Aris Ade speaks with Marda. When Marda says that she aspires to emulate the Mother, Aris tells Marda that she can strive to be better than their leader. Despite their theological differences with the Jedi, Aris believes that their faith is strengthened by listening and challenging other believers. Aris likens the Force to a song and tells Marda that her relationship with the Force can be like a duet. Aris also challenges Marda to ponder what the Mother and she can give to the Force in return. Aris' words give Marda food for thought.

The Deluge[]

Following the Jedi visit, Yana contemplates escaping the Path commune due to Treze murdering the dockmaster and Kor's feelings about the strange "jewel orb." Before she can seek out the Mother, heavy rain begins falling on the commune's grounds. She finds her cousin Marda meeting with the Mother. Unlike Yana, Marda still fervently believes in the faith and is obsessed about converting Kevmo to the Path. When she asks Yana for advice, Yana says that persistence matters while hiding her true feelings. The Mother counsels Marda to continue "learning" from the Jedi.

After Marda leaves, Yana discuss the Jedi visitors with the Mother. Yana is concerned that the Jedi will eventually discover they have been stealing Force-related artifacts. Both agree that the Jedi might establish an outpost on Dalna, bringing the Path's activities under scrutiny. When Yana confides she is planning to leave, the Mother begs her to reconsider and to commune with the Force. After leaving the meeting, Yana discovers that underground water has been flowing into the caverns, causing the Path lands to flood.

Meanwhile, Kevmo and Zallah play a game of dejarik while discussing Dalna's unusual rain patterns. Shortly later, Marda visits their home, saying that she wants to learn from them. While discussing the philosophy of the Force, the local law enforcement officer Jinx Pickwick visits the Jedi lodging with news that the basin near Ferdan is flooding. The Jedi volunteer to help with flood relief including sandbagging and evacuations. With the basin flooding, Marda fears that the caves at the Path's compound will flood, endangering the Littles and Elders. Zallah sends Kevmo to assist Marda with evacuating the Path residents while she assists Pickwick with flood relief efforts in the town.

While heading back to the Path compound, Marda questions why the Force did not reveal the deluge and last year's Ashrow volcano rockslide to the Mother. Kevmo calms the anxious Marda. At the compound, the find several people gathering at a storage barn near the communal gardens. While most of the Littles and Elders have evacuated to the surface, she realizes that the Kessarines Ferize, Er Dal and three of their newborns are missing. Marda and Kevmo descend into the caves to the rescue the Kessarine family.

While heading to the nesting chamber, they pass a narrow corridor marked with black guide marks. When Kevmo asks, Marda says that they are for more advanced acolytes and servants of the Mother. Inside the flooded caves, they find Ferize and her family near the water basins. Er Dal has been trapped behind a loose rock with their hatchlings Fe Isle, Fe Remine and Fe Tale. After freeing Ferize and one of her children, Kevmo and Marda work together to free Er Dal and the two remaining children in the rapidly flooding caverns. Following the rescue, Kevmo apologizes to Marda for using the Force. Marda rationalized that it was the will of the Force that their rescue mission succeeded.


Three days after the flood, Yana meets with Kor, Cindel and Treze to discuss their next plan to "liberate" a Force artifact known as Jedi Tears from the Graf family compound on Thelj. While Yana expresses doubts about her faith in the Mother including the theft and sale of the artefacts, her friends do not share her skepticism. While Kor joins her mother Opari and the elders in rehearsing for a harvest dance, Yana takes leave to work on restoring the lights at the commune. Before leaving, she tells the Herald about her plans to leave Dalna and the faith. The Herald urges Yana to live in harmony with the Force.

Meanwhile, Sunshine meets with the Mother. Though he has failed to steal the Rod of Daybreak, he has learnt that the artifact is being exhibited at a museum in Jedha. The Mother is satisfied with his intelligence gathering and tasks her with transporting the Children including Yana for another "pilgrimage."

Elsewhere, Kevmo has spent the past three days helping Marda with post-disaster relief work in the commune including preparing a communal meal and babysitting the Littles. Kevmo also tells the children stories about his childhood on Hosnian Prime before joining the Jedi, the Jedi Temple and Jedha. Marda is curious about Jedha, which is the seat of the Convocation of the Force for various Force-wielding faiths including the Guardians of the Whills, Jedi, Sorcerers of Tund and Church of the Force.

Kevmo later returns to Ferden where he helps Lady Jara's three Gamorrean and Gigoran workers lift a damaged trading transport from the mud. While heading to the port to rejoin Master Zallah, he eavesdrops on a conversation between the Path cultist Treze and Rilly about finding a ship to travel offworld. The conversation reinforces his suspicion that the Path was behind the theft of the Force artifacts.

Master Zallah informs Kevmo that their skiff's compressor was damaged during the deluge and that she has contacted Port Haileap to send a new one. Kevmo briefs the the Jedi Knight about his adventures in the tunnels beneath the Path compound including using the Force to save lives and sensing a dark side presence. Zallah thinks the Path are hiding stolen Force artifacts aboard the Gaze Electric. Kevmo also tells Zallah that Marda is interested in visiting Jedha and that he has feelings for her. Zallah says it is alright for Kevmo to like Marda but reminds him that he knows the Force already.

Later that night, Marda bathes in the nearby river. While heading back to her cell at the commune, she meets the Herald. The two discuss the Force and their religious differences with the Jedi. The Herald believes that Kevmo using the Force to save lives on Dalna would mean causing the death of someone far away. He uses a group of flutterbug larvae to demonstrate the Path's belief that the Force must be free. Marda is upset when the Herald reveals that Yana plans to leave the Path. The Herald asks Marda to convince her cousin to reconsider. He also confirms that the Path plan to leave Dalna once the Gaze Electric is space worthy.

At Cincey's hut, Yana finishes reprogramming the last of the compound's lights. Before she can leave, she is confronted by an upset Marda, who attempts to convince her cousins not to leave the Path of the Open Hand. While Marda is still a fervent believer, Yana is more skeptical due to her harsh Evereni childhood before joining the Path. She is also more willing to question the faith's leadership and tells Marda that the Path's teachings are not the sole authority of truth. Despite their different opinions, the two hug before separating.

The invitation to Jedha[]

While waiting for their skiff to be repaired, Master Zallah and Padawan Kevmo discuss plans to search for the Rod of Seasons, which they believe the Path has stolen. While Kevmo is eager to recover the stolen artifact, Zallah advises caution and waiting for the Path to make a mistake. During the day, he meets a distraught Marda, who confides that Yana is planning to leave the Path. While chatting over ice cream, Marda questions why a high-ranking believer like Yana would want to leave the Path. She thinks it is because the Path's Children have failed to win new converts in Hynestia and Hon-Tallos. Kevmo thinks that there may be more to why Yana wants to leave the Path and invites Marda to attend the Convocation as part of an interfaith experience. Marda is interested and Kevmo says he will seek permission from Zallah for her to come along.

Following her meeting with Kevmo, Marda visits the Mother's cottage. She finds the Mother meeting with the Herald and Elders Aris Ade and Delwin. Marda informs the Path leadership that she was unable to persuade Yana not to leave the Path. Marda then seeks permission from the leaders to go to Jedha in order to establish the Path there since the Convocation lacks a representative from their faith community. While the Herald is supportive of her Jedha proposal, the Mother insists on sticking to their plan to travel the galaxy in the Gaze Electric. Ultimately, the Mother declines Marda's proposal, saying that she "does not want the Path on Jedha at this time." Marda submits but the Mother's words causes her to question the Path's teachings that the Mother speaks for the Force.

The failed heist[]

Yana and the other Children depart on Sunshine Dobbs's ship Scupper for their mission to steal a Force artifact from the Graf family compound on icy Thelj. Sunshine uses a private hyperspace route to travel fast to Thelj. During the journey, Kor confronts Yana about her plans to leave the Path. When Yana says the Jedi will eventually discover the Path's stolen artifacts on Dalna, Kor believes that the Force will protect them and still trusts the Mother.

Arriving at the Graf compound, the Path as pilgrims seeking respite from the cold and invoke the Rite of Hospitality. While visiting the refresher, Yana hacks into their computer system in order to facilitate the heist. However, things go awry when Treze and Kor are embroiled in a fight with the Graf family's private security guards. Yana kills the human housekeeper by breaking her necklace. Yana kills another security guard restraining Kor while Treze stabs the Duros security guard in the chest, seemingly incapacitating him.

Despite disarming the security system, Kor is mortally wounded by a blaster wound to her waist. With the Graf security alerted, the Children are forced to abort their mission. Treze thinks they have been betrayed. Before they can leave, he is stabbed in the neck by the Duros guard. Yana kills the guard with her blaster before fleeing with Kor. While fleeing back to Sunshine's ship, Kor succumbs to her injuries. In her final moments, she expresses her love for Yana. Yana is forced to abandon her lover as security guards and Theljan whales converge on their position.

Aboard the Scupper, Yana accuses Sunshine and the Mother of betraying the group. Dobbs denies his involvement but offers to take Yana back to Dalna to settle things with the Mother. Due to the Evereni stereotype for violence, he locks her in the refresher during the return journey.

Secrets unearthed[]

While Kevmo and Zallah are practising with lightsaber combat, Marda visits their lodging and chats with Lady Jara and her Trandoshan neighbor. Marda tells the Jedi that she is unable to accompany them to Jedha, claiming that she is not ready to leave Dalna yet. Though she does not approve of how the Jedi use the Force, she thanks the Jedi for giving her a sense of clarity and for saving the lives of her fellow believers. Kevmo notices a change in Marda's personality.

In private, Marda tells Kevmo that Yana is offworld but is due to return today. Kevmo realizes that the Mother resides on Dalna rather than offworld. When Marda tells Kevmo that she wants to kiss him, Kevmo is reluctant due to the Jedi belief in avoiding attachments such as romantic relationships. Marda is surprised to learn that Jedi practise chastity. The two young people agree to remain friends for life.

Later, Kevmo hides near the flood-damaged port office for the Path's ship. That evening, Yana arrives on Sunshine's starship Scupper. He also witnesses Sunshine Dobbs, whom he recognizes as a wanted criminal implicated in various crimes including the suspected murder of Republic official Alonso San Tekka. Kevmo informs Master Zallah, who decides that they will investigate the Path's compound tonight.

An upset Yana meets Marda outside the commune and tells her that Kor and Treze perished during their latest mission. Yana believes that the Mother sent them to Thelj and betrayed them. When Marda says that the Force guides the Mother, Yana questions whether the Mother experiences Force visions. Yana wants to kill the Mother but Marda convinces her to let her wash and feed her in her cell. While eating, Yana tells her cousin that the Mother sent her team to Thelj to steal a Force artifact from the Graf compound. However, they walked into a trap, which resulted in the deaths of Treze and Kor. She believes that the Mother wanted them killed since they were asking questions. Marda convinces Yana to also speak with Kor's parents The Herald and Opara. Despite her loyalty to the faith, Marda agrees to leave the Path with Yana after she has spoken with the Herald and the Mother. While Yana thinks that the Jedi will not help them, Marda says she trust Kevmo and the Force.

The Leveler unleashed[]

Yana enters the Mother's cottage where she is confronted by Master Zallah and Kevmo, who have discovered the Mother's stolen stash of Force artifacts including the Rod of Seasons. Yana accuses the Jedi of trespassing. Shortly later, they are joined by the Mother, the Herald, Jukkyuk and Qwerb. The Mother gives the Jedi the opportunity to leave with the Rod of Seasons but Zallah wants to arrest her for stealing Force artifacts. The Herald and his retainers open fire on the Jedi with their blasters but the two Jedi deflect their blaster bolts with their lightsabers.

The Mother breaks her purple jewel, which is revealed to be an egg containing a Nameless hatchling, later known as the Great Leveler. Manifesting as a blob of iridescent blue flesh, the Leveler clings onto Master Zallah and turns her to stone rapidly. The Mother says the Force has spoken while Jukkyuk supports her. The Leveler turns its attention to Kevmo. The Padawan attempts to defend himself with the Force but the creature wraps its tendril around his ankle. Kevmo descends into a state of fear before breaking free of the Nameless and fleeing the room. Having consumed the living Force of its victims, the Leveler grows into a four-legged form resembling a tooka cat. The Mother proclaims the Leveler's attack on the Jedi as a sign that the Force will protect them. In private, Yana tells the Mother than Kor and Treze have perished during the failed mission to steal the Force artifact.

Kevmo flees the cavern in a state of fear and panic. Due to the Nameless' attack, he is unable to feel or sense the Force. He also finds his body slowly turning to stone. After Marda is packing her clothes and applying brikal-shell paint on her face, she heads to the caverns to visit the Kessarine Ferize and her family. She tells Ferize that she will be going offworld with Yana but not leaving the Path. She explains there was an accident on Yana's last offworld trip involving Kor and Treze. While cuddling one of the Kessarine, she hears an unusual noise from the tunnels.

Marda and one of the adult Kessarines venture into the tunnel where they encounter a wounded and disheveled Kevmo, who had been attacked by the Leveler. Kevmo struggles to speak and is unable to feel the Force. In his last moments, he tells her that he was attacked by the Mother. Marda notices that Kevmo smells like chalk and that a grey stony scale has spread all over his body. Before the Kessarines can return with help, Kevmo is completely transformed into stone. Following his death, she retrieves his lightsaber.

Leaving Dalna[]

Meanwhile, Yana tells the Herald about the Mother's role in orchestrating the Ambush on Thelj, adding that Dobbs verified it. Yana proposes killing the Mother before more Jedi arrive. The Herald dismisses the Jedi as a threat due to the recent display of the Leveler's power. Yana wants to confront the Mother for causing the death of Kor but the Herald thinks this is not the time for personal vendettas due to the recent developments involving the Leveler. Unable to defend themselves on Dalna, he proposes that the Path depart on the Gaze Electric. Several elders including Aris Ade and Old Waiden arrive to investigate the recent commotion.

The Mother takes the opportunity to introduce the Leveler, claiming that she saw the creature in a Force vision. Sunshine tells the crowd that there are more creatures similar to the Leveler on an uncharted planet in Wild Space. The Herald tells the other elders that they will depart soon on the Gaze Electric since the ship is spaceworthy. He says that the Leveler needs to grow to full strength away from enemies who continue to use the Force for personal gain. The Mother obliges but Yana senses that she and the Herald are locked into a power struggle.

Yana realizes that the Leveler snuggles up to her since she is holding the Rod of Seasons. The Herald claims that the Leveler has chosen her as its champion. While angry at the Mother and the Herald for their deception, Yana feigns submission and says that she is humbled that the Leveler has chosen her as her champion. Yana senses that the Herald is plotting something and that she has been drawn into his plan.

Marda soon arrives with Kevmo's lightsaber at the cavern floor where the crowd has gathered before the Mother, Herald, Yana and the statue of the fallen Jedi Knight Zallah. Marda confirms Kevmo's death and kneels before the Leveler in the presence of the crowd. Marda rationalizes that the Leveler killed the Jedi because they abused the Force, restoring balance. Marda says they have to stop the other Jedi. Her words are echoed by the other, who preaches that the Path are vessels who live in harmony with the free Force. The Mother appoints Marda as a guide who will work alongside the Leveler's champion Yana. Marda has thoughts of taking the Path and the Leveler to the Convocation on Jedha.

Plans in motion[]

While the Gaze Electric travels through space several days later, Sunshine meets with the Mother Elecia in her private quarters. He confirms that there is another Force artifact on Jedha known as the Rod of Daybreak, which is in a heavily guarded vault in the hands of the Jedi. The Mother sends Sunshine to go to Jedha to prepare for their arrival. She tells him to make the Path's presence felt.

Meanwhile, Yana meets with the Herald in private. Yana discusses her relationship with Kor, who dreamed of traveling through the galaxy. The two vow vengeance against the Mother for causing the deaths of his daughter Kor and Treze. The Herald reveals that Treze had a girlfriend in Ferdan who is expecting a child. As part of their plan against the Mother, the Herald tasks Yana with recruiting her cousin Marda, whom the Path look up to as their Guide. Yana will play the role of the Guardian. When Yana asks what role the Herald will play, he backs away. Yana then meets with Marda in her personal quarters. Marda has changed her face paint to a fearsome design as an expression of her new religious militancy. She wonders what she has gotten herself into.


A few days later, Jedi Knight Azlin Rell and his droid C-9 investigate the now abandoned Path compound on Dalna, which have been recently abandoned. Azlin was responding to an emergency request from Master Xo Lahru to check the well-being of Zallah and Kevmo on Dalna after they had lost contact days earlier. Azlin had already search Zallah's shuttle and spoken with sheriff Jinx Pickwick and Lady Jara, who blamed the Path of the Open Hand for the Jedi's disappearance. While searching the caverns beneath the compound, he finds the calcified remains of Kevmo and Zallah. Azlin also discovers that their lightsabers are missing. Through the Force, he senses a disturbance that sends fear down his spine.



Cover gallery[]


Wiki-shrinkable This in-universe list is incomplete. You can help Wookieepedia by expanding it.
By type
Characters Organisms Droid models Events Locations
Organizations and titles Sentient species Vehicles and vessels Weapons and technology Miscellanea



Droid models



Organizations and titles

Sentient species

Vehicles and vessels

Weapons and technology



Explore all of Wookieepedia's images for this article subject.

Notes and references[]

External links[]