The High Republic Adventures 8 is the eighth issue of the canon comic book series Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures. It was written by Daniel José Older, illustrated by Toni Bruno and Rebecca Nalty, and published by IDW Publishing on September 1, 2021.
Back together and safe on the Starlight, Lula, Zeen, Farzala, and Qort recover from their adventures on the Junk Moon and Nal Hutta, but a new challenge awaits them in the form of an old friend. Meanwhile, Marchion Ro encourages Krix's violent obsessions, leading to an attack on Takodana!
On Starlight Beacon, Zeen Mrala, accompanied by Lula Talisola, Ram Jomaram, and V-18, is thrilled to be reunited with her friends. She hasn't seen Qort and Farzala Tarabal for months, but it feels more like years. It feels like they've been friends her whole life, although she hasn't known them that long, and they've saved each others' lives more times than she can count. As they hug, Farzala says they heard about the attack on Valo and were quite worried, but Lula says that he was the one fighting Drengir with the Hutts. Zeen notices that Farzala and Qort have a new friend, while he and Lula trade questions about whose new friend is being introduced first.
Lula introduces Ram, explaining he's a Padawan from Valo, amazing with tech, and he saved many lives during the attack, including theirs. After Ram says hello, Farzala gives him a hug, saying that he's family. Farzala then introduces Ishnar Ti-Kharatal as a legendary warrior of the Hutts and excellent chef, saying she also saved their lives, although it took some prodding. As Ishnar awkwardly says hello, Farzala continues that they invited her to come along as they thought she would fit right in, as she's great at covering your back in a fight. Lula gives Ishnar a hug, and Zeen is happy to see everyone like that. But dread still lingers, as Zeen knows there's still something she has to take care of, or rather someone: her former best friend Krix Kamerat, who felt so betrayed about Zeen secretly being Force-sensitive that he joined the Nihil.
Aboard the Nihil flagship, the Gaze Electric, Krix approaches Eye of the Nihil Marchion Ro. When Ro gives him permission to speak, Krix haltingly says that he had heard Ro had captured a Jedi, and he thought that maybe the thing he found in the Kharvashark Ruins, the power it holds, could allow them to capture and destroy a Jedi. Ro asks what would happen then, and Krix says he wants that power, because it could destroy the whole Jedi Order and all Force-users. When Ro notes that the pain of his friend's betrayal still affects him, Krix denies it. Ro goes on, however, stating that he has already elevated Krix above many Nihil that have served for much longer, even bringing him into his inner circle, but he still asks for more. Saying that Krix can come along on the final leg of the journey to destroy the Republic and its allies with him, Ro demands that Krix show him he is worthy, asking Krix to show what he can do with what remains of his contingent after that debacle on Vrant Tarnum. Ro asks Krix to show him how truly Nihil he is capable of being, and Krix swears he will show Ro and the whole galaxy.
On Starlight, hearing that Ishnar is both a great warrior and an amazing cook, Zeen asks her if there's anything she can't do. The Nikto responds that her singing skills are quite mediocre. Farzala quips that he hopes Ishnar is a good teacher as well, and Lula groans that she messed up a dish once and has never heard the end of it. Ishnar asks what Lula was trying to cook, while Ram asks if they don't have a briefing to go to. As Zeen sighs, Farzala explains that it was water. Ram asks how exactly it's possible to ruin water while Ishnar wonders how water is a dish, as Lula asks the others not to start in on her too. Ram is confused, but attempts to assuage Lula that he's a terrible cook too, while Lula insists she's not terrible and blames Farzala for it, as he retorts that he's not the one who burned water. Zeen tells Ishnar that Lula was trying to make tea, which is sort of a dish, but Ishnar retorts that it isn't if you burn all of your water.
On Takodana in the Mid Rim, Krix leads his Storm Riders while explaining the plan of attack: they'll wreak some havoc, soften things up before the full attack, and let the pirate Maz Kanata know that the Nihil are the galaxy's only "real" raiders. As he says he's heard that the Jedi outpost there is defended by only one Jedi, who is apparently just some old lady, Krix figures that they might be able to do the whole thing themselves, kill the woman and blow up the temple. But when he asks if his raiders are with him, a voice of dissent asks if they really want to get involved with a Jedi again. Krix demands to know who isn't sure, stating the voice sounded like one of the Krill sisters. Neither Bareen or Sabata admit to being the dissenter, however, and Krix snaps that since no one wants to admit to being a coward, they'll go on the run, but says that all cowards deserve death.
At the Jedi Temple, Sav Malagán is making herself caf, just about to take a sip when the invasion alarm goes off. Heading onto the roof, she sees that the Nihil have finally come to her small corner of the galaxy, and says that she almost feels bad for them.
On Starlight, the Padawans and their friends arrive at the meditation room for the war meeting to find Jedi Masters Kantam Sy and Torban Buck medidating. Torban hops off his chair and greets the students, saying that in order to prepare for their task ahead, he and Kantam have been engaging in an intensive Force meditation which will help place their minds in lockstep with each other. Lula asks about the task, and Kantam tells their Padawan that that's what they're about to explain, but first Kantam and Torban know that much has happened in the galaxy while they have been separated, and they have been through some harrowing experiences. The Padawans and younglings explode with questions: did Loden Greatstorm really get turned to dust? Is Yoda okay? News from Valo? Do the Nihil have a weapon that can turn Jedi to dust? Is anyone looking for Yoda? How do you burn water?
On Takodana, Sav cheerfully welcomes the "visitors of dubious intent" before leaping from the temple roof and dodging cannon fire, landing on top one of the Nihil ships. Throwing the pilot out, Sav explains that they usually welcome strangers on Takodana, but the pirates have tested their hospitality to their limits, leaving the first ship behind and leaping onto a second one. Krix demands that the Jedi be destroyed, but none of the Nihil can see her, so Krix shouts to destroy everything. Drawing her lightsabers, Sav is spotted while atop a Nihil ship, leading another pirate vessel to fire upon it, but Sav leaps onto another ship, avoiding the destruction. Inflicting damage upon the final ship, Sav lands on the ground again and sheaths her weapons, while Krix is baffled as to how she did it, his own ship the only one unscathed.
On Starlight, Torban tells the Padawans to hang on, saying they don't have satisfying answers to most of their questions. Kantam explains that Yoda is still missing, adding that while the students know that Kantam was Yoda's apprentice once upon a time and they wish he was here, Yoda gave orders for no one to follow him, and they must trust the Force on this. Torban explains that Master Loden is indeed one with the Force, and that although the Jedi don't know what did that to him or how it was possible, one of their best investigators is on the case. Kantam explains that the students have been asked there today because they have been designated as a special task force, Torban stating that in these perilous times, all Jedi must help in whatever way they can. As Kantam explains, there's a Nihil cell that has been wreaking havoc on Jedi outposts in a nearby corner of the galaxy, usually sending a small advance strike team followed by a larger attack force targeting first responders and rescue efforts. Based on intelligence reports, the leader of the cell doesn't fit into the Tempest Runner power structure and is instead operating independently, possibly answering to a single higher authority. Zeen is anguished when Kantam says they believe the cell leader is Krix.
Kantam says that given her close relationship with him, they were considering having Zeen stay behind. But the girl thinks to herself that she just knew that Krix would bring either joy or sorrow to the galaxy, no in-between, and refuses. She says that the close relationship they once had is gone, as she thinks that maybe that in itself meant there was only one option for Krix, as he would have found a way to twist whatever happened to him so it would go to one extreme or the other, endangering those around him. Zeen admits she has made mistakes, but she has learned a great deal over the past few months, thinking to herself that they'll never know and it doesn't really matter, because what matters is the choice Krix made. Kantam agrees, but tells Zeen that they will discuss her choice moving forward, as they leave immediately. When Farzala asks where, Torban says they're off to Takodana, where a single Jedi fended off the initial attack, but will need their help to deal with the follow-up. Lula is surprised at this, but Torban supposes that they haven't met Sav Malagán.
On Takodana, the Kyuzo Jedi hears from a Toydarian that the only damage to nearby buildings was one window, and all the surviving Nihil were taken into custody. Sav agrees that this is excellent, saying that Maz is coming over with some of her crew to help out, and Starlight has a contingent on the way. As she is stating they know the Nihil will be back, however, she hear something and discovers two injured pirates underneath a piece of debris, who ask for help.
At a Nihil base at Dol'har Hyde, Krix leaps out of his fighter. Another pirate approaches with a question, but Krix says it's not the time and orders his Nihil to their flyers, declaring that today they destroy the Jedi Temple on Takodana.
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Notes and references
- The High Republic Adventures 8 takes place shortly after the Attack on Valo. The Star Wars Book dates the launch of the Starlight Beacon to 232 years before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, which corresponds to 232 BBY in the calendar system used by Star Wars: Galactic Atlas. As The High Republic: Light of the Jedi depicts the Beacon's launch, the novel's events must take place around that year. The novel The High Republic: The Rising Storm takes place almost a year after the events of Light of the Jedi, so the events of The Rising Storm must take place around 231 BBY. Therefore, the Attack on Valo and The High Republic Adventures 8 take place around 231 BBY.