The New Jedi Order: Vector Prime is a Star Wars Legends novel written by R. A. Salvatore. It is the first volume in the series Star Wars: The New Jedi Order, and it was first published on October 5, 1999 by Del Rey.
The events of the novel are set in 25 ABY, and the story introduces the villainous Yuuzhan Vong and their plans of domination. Vector Prime was also notable for depicting the death of Chewbacca, which was the first time a major Star Wars original trilogy character was permanently killed in the Expanded Universe.
With the exciting arrival of The New Jedi Order series, the next era of Star Wars history is about to begin. Here, fantasy and science fiction's most acclaimed authors propel the legendary epic into the next millennium, introducing us to a rich cast of characters that features old favorites—Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Leia Organa Solo—along with the next generation of Jedi and never-before-seen creatures, droids, and deadly agents of darkness. In Vector Prime, the launch novel for this thrilling new saga, New York Times bestselling author R. A. Salvatore takes the Star Wars universe to previously unscaled heights of action and imagination, expanding the beloved story of a galaxy far, far away…
Twenty-one years have passed since the heroes of the Rebel Alliance destroyed the Death Star, breaking the power of the Emperor. Since then, the New Republic has valiantly struggled to maintain peace and prosperity among the peoples of the galaxy. But unrest has begun to spread; tensions erupt in outbreaks of rebellion that, if unchecked, threaten to destroy the Republic's tenuous reign.
Into this volatile atmosphere comes Nom Anor, a charismatic firebrand who heats passions to the boiling point, sowing seeds of dissent for his own dark motives. In an effort to avert a catastrophic civil war, Leia travels with her daughter Jaina, her sister-in-law Mara Jade Skywalker, and the loyal protocol droid C-3PO, to conduct face-to-face diplomatic negotiations with Nom Anor. But he proves resistant to Leia's entreaties—and, far more inexplicably, within the Force, where a being should be, is…a blank space.
Meanwhile, Luke is plagued by reports of rogue Jedi Knights who are taking the law into their own hands. And so he wrestles with a dilemma: Should he attempt, in this climate of mistrust, to reestablish the legendary Jedi Council?
As the Jedi and the Republic focus on internal struggles, a new threat surfaces, unnoticed, beyond the farthest reaches of the Outer Rim. An enemy appears from outside known space, bearing weapons and technology unlike anything New Republic scientists have ever seen. Suddenly Luke, Mara, Leia, Han Solo, and Chewbacca—along with the Solo children—are thrust again into battle, to defend the freedom so many have fought and died for. But this time, all their courage, sacrifice, and even the power of the Force itself may not be enough…
Leia Organa Solo rides on the Jade Sabre. She, Jaina Solo, and Mara Jade Skywalker are going to Rhommamool to speak with its leader, Nom Anor. Rhommamool and its neighboring planet, Osarian, are on the brink of war. The Osarians don't want Leia to go to Rhommamool, because they figure that it would rally support for the planet, which they consider their enemy. As a result, they send some Z-95's out at them. The Jade Sabre is originally going to just evade the attackers, when Wurth Skidder, a Jedi who is staying on the Mon Calamari cruiser Mediator, which is between the two planets, comes out and destroys them. It is clear that it was mostly just so that he could have some fun. Leia is furious. A protocol droid, C-9PO, is captured by the Red Knights of Life on Rhommamool, and destroyed along with many others at the Square of Hopeful Redemption, with Nom Anor looking on in amusement.
At ExGal-4, on the planet Belkadan, Yomin Carr, a Yuuzhan Vong agent, is waiting for the invasion to begin. When Carr sees the blip he was waiting for, he disables the communications of ExGal-4 and contacts Nom Anor, letting him know that the invasion has been initiated. On the way back, he picks up a beetle, a creature that he had brought, hoping that it would spread; indeed, it is spreading quickly. The other scientists discover the blip and think that it is an asteroid, because it is not transmitting any signals. A crew member suggests contacting ExGal Command, but they decide against the action as the blip could be an object from their galaxy that just rebounded back in. Carr is instrumental in having them arrive at this decision. Nom Anor sits more than halfway across the galaxy, excited to have heard from Carr that the move forward has begun.
Luke Skywalker and Jacen Solo meet with the New Republic Advisory Council, headed by Chief of State Borsk Fey'lya on Coruscant. Luke is hounded by some councilors because some Jedi are playing law keeper too strongly. Luke suspects that their complaints are because Jedi are giving smugglers a hard time; he suspects that some councilors have illegal dealings with them, thus, when Jedi attack the smugglers, it affects the councilors. Luke and Jacen discuss their differences of opinion of what the Jedi should be, and whether or not the Jedi Council should be re-established.
Nom Anor discusses with his underlings, explaining that he's behind Mara's disease. He hopes to learn how Mara was doing at this meeting. The meeting is terrible for Leia; Nom Anor is terribly rude to her. They leave. Anor instructs his underlings to see to it that their departure takes them by the Square of Hopeful Redemption. The protagonists share their opinion of Nom Anor, and show their reaction as they fly over the Square of Hopeful Redemption.
Han Solo and Anakin Solo are trying to fix the Millennium Falcon, which Anakin damaged by trying to show off and be like Jaina. Han and Luke discuss the meeting and Lando Calrissian's whereabouts with the council. Luke thinks if he could get someone from the Outer Rim's thoughts and insights, he could use that to get the councilors to see his point of view.
The scientists at ExGal-4 track the 'asteroid' to the Helska system. With its current vector, it will collide with the fourth planet in that system, which is made of ice. At this point they try to contact ExGal Command. It doesn't work. The extragalactic "asteroid" is actually a living worldship, led by Prefect Da'Gara. Tu Shoolb tells the Prefect that he'd been consulting his yammosk, the worldship's genetically engineered war coordinator. It is anxious to begin. The ExGal scientists detect a tail on their extragalactic object. They reason that it must be a comet. Only Yomin Carr knows the truth. He does something that will destroy the planet.
Prefect Da'Gara and the 5,000 that are on board prepare for landing, and put on their protective ooglith cloakers and gnulliths, which help them to breathe. They follow the yammosk down into the ice to establish a base. The ExGal-4 scientists see the "comet" impact with the fourth planet of the Helska system; to their surprise, there is no explosion. They want to contact ExGal, but the communications were not operative yet. They considered taking their unreliable ship, Spacecaster, to send a communication, but decide to wait.
Leia and Jaina are in the cockpit of Jade Sabre, near Coruscant. Mara is tired, so Jaina is piloting alone. Leia thinks of Nom Anor, and attempts to contact again. There is a huge Mon Calamari Star Defender, the Viscount, newly commissioned by the New Republic. Since they are nearing Coruscant, Leia goes to get Mara, as she requested. The disease has attacked Mara's womb this time, which greatly disturbs her.
Jacen talks to Anakin, who is constantly practicing with his lightsaber, saying that Jedi are not to use the Force to right every wrong, and not to use the Force to gain glory for themselves. They decide to spar, to see whose philosophy wins out in a fight. Despite not practicing with the saber nearly as much as Anakin, Jacen wins out. He says, "We're not a galactic patrol." Jacen then goes to see how Han and Chewbacca are faring. He finds Chewie in a very disagreeable mood.
Mara meets back up with Luke, and they exchange stories. They decide to take a trip to the Outer Rim. Leia meets with the councilors to tell them of her mission. Han sends Chewie with her. Councilor Fyor Rodan comes out and begins hounding Chewie. Chewie disposes of him by hanging him by his collar on a coatrack. They meet up and inform Leia that they are going on a trip to talk to Lando.
Three members of ExGal-4, Danni Quee, Cho Badeleg, and Bensin Tomri decide to go to the ice planet. They ask Carr, but he politely declines. His real reason is that he has orders to stay away from them. He discreetly damages the Spacecaster. He then contacts Prefect Da'Gara, and tells him to beware of Danni. Belkadan will soon be poisoned, yet Carr will survive onplanet, as he'll have his ooglith cloaker. Yomin goes out with Garth Breise to fix the transmitter. They see some reddish brown beetles. Carr suggests that they may be the source of the problem. They decide to climb anyway. They find the problem. Carr, however, cuts Breise's rope, and Breise falls to his death.
Danni and the other scientists in the Spacecaster see a storm moving toward their ExGal-4 Base. They try to establish contact, but can hear very little. They decide to move on. Nom Anor launches missiles at Osa-Prime. He knows he'll have to flee, but he does it mainly as a distraction for the New Republic. The Millennium Falcon, Jade's Sabre, and Luke's X-wing (piloted by a thrilled Jaina) arrive at Reecee. Leia manages to leave without her Noghri guard, Bolpuhr, noticing. Luke and Jacen talk about re-creating the Jedi Council.
Han and Chewie go to Riebold's Foam and Sizzle — a place where fights, even deadly ones, are not frowned upon, as long as one cleans up after oneself — to find out about Lando. They find a Sullustan Han knows, Dugo Bagy, and he tells them that Lando is looking for new mining techniques to apply to more profitable areas, like the asteroid in the Hoth system, known as Kerane's Folly, which contains pure platinum. Many have tried mining it, but were killed because of other asteroids. They also learn that Kyp Durron is causing a lot of trouble for the smugglers-Kyp and other pilots, known as The Dozen-and-Two Avengers.
ExGal-4 scientists Jerem Cadmir, Tee-ubo Doole, Luther De'Ono, and Bendodi Ballow-Reese leave the base to investigate the storm Danni told them about as she was taking off. They find it; it isn't a storm. It is a plague, probably caused by beetles, causing a molecular change in the plant life. It fills the air with poisonous gas. They don't have enough air for all of them to get back. They all sacrifice their air so that Jerem will have a chance of surviving.
Danni and the crew in the Spacecaster arrive at Helska IV. They are confused as to why the planet appears to be untouched. They assume that a ball of gas must have been what collided. They detect strange energy from the planet. They begin to circle the planet when they detect hundreds of chunks of debris. They find out that they are ships of some kind. The ships take out the Spacecaster's ion engines and hyperdrive so they can't escape, meaning that the attackers know about the workings of their ship. The Yuuzhan Vong send a villip, and Prefect Da'Gara communicates to them through it. He tells them to follow the coralskippers. They refuse, and are shot down.
Jerem makes it back to base, only to be killed (honorably) by Yomin Carr. Carr takes his sample of the deadly gas and the beetle. He could still do as he was ordered — he would see if the scientists that remained would be able to find a cure of the "Plague." Danni wakes up down on the planet. She watches as the last member of her crew, Bensin, as he is killed by the Yuuzhan Vong. Da'Gara says that Yomin Carr demanded honor for her. He throws her down a hole, and he jumps in after her.
Luke, Leia, Han, and the others go to visit Lando's new venture at Dubrillion, and its twin, less-habitable planet, Destrillion. They give Jaina a test in Luke's X-wing. They have R2-D2 feed her the wrong coordinates; she arrives just a little ways away. She adapts well and finds her way. They meet Lando again here. He shows them his TIE Advanced fighters he uses to run the belt. They are modified to be very safe, and Jaina wants to run the belt. The Solo kids take part in the run here, all making it on to Lando's board of best times. Jaina's run is outstanding.
The plague is spreading at the ExGal-4 base. As the communications are being fixed, Carr re-destroys them, and kills Lysire Donabelle, the person making repairs. Nom Anor and his assistant escape from Rhommamool in a hidden, modified A-Wing. They do considerable damage to the Mon Cal cruiser in the process. Nom Anor contacts Da'Gara, and reports that his next target is Sernpidal. They discuss using the tactic called Yo'gand's Core, which uses gravity to pull a moon and a planet into a collision.
Jacen and Anakin argue again about the Force, using Jaina's amazing flight to debate whether it was a result of the Force guiding her actions or the fact that she practiced piloting a lot. Then Kyp Durron walks in to say hello. He is obviously a little upset that Jaina has taken his record in running the belt, but offers them the opportunity to join his squadron, the Dozen-and-Two Avengers. Kyp leaves, and takes off with his squadron; the kids watch the disciplined and high-profile take-off, complete with music.
Leia, Luke, Lando, and Mara watch the takeoff, too. Lando then offers to let Luke and Mara run the belt. Lando would have loved to have such names on his leader board, but they don't want to fly. They do, however, get Han and Chewie go together in the TIE bomber, in hopes of beating Moss Deevers and Twingo, a pair of cocky smugglers. When they go, there is a malfunction in the communications and shields.
Kyp ponders the future of the Dozen-and-Two. They check for recent traffic. They detect a Spacecaster class vessel coming from Belkadan. They are headed to the Helska system. Kyp sends out a signal for someone to investigate Belkadan, while he takes his squadron to the Helska system. Luke flies into the asteroids to try to rescue Han and Chewie; Luke also has no shields. He finds and rescues them. They were exactly tied with Moss and Twingo when they lost communications, but Lando adds five seconds, so they hold the record for a twosome.
Nearly all of Kyp's squadron is taken out by a squadron of Yuuzhan Vong coralskippers in a skirmish at Helska IV. Kyp escapes to hyperspace, along with another A-wing, but Kyp has 3 grutchins on him. Lando asks Han to go to Sernpidal to run some cargo, and Han reluctantly agrees. Luke and Mara go to Belkadan (as per Kyp's call for someone to go there). Kyp's X-wing has been damaged by the grutchins. He rerouts some power, and began making short hyperspace hops toward Sernpidal, the closest inhabited planet. The Yuuzhan Vong bring a man named Miko Reglia in with Danni Quee. He says that he is a Jedi with the Dozen-and-Two. The Yuuzhan Vong say he is not worthy. Danni and Reglia begin looking for a way to escape.
Da'Gara reports to Nom Anor about the attack. He says that he thinks the two ships that had escaped were destroyed. They are now going to begin "breaking' the Jedi, in order to test the extent of his willpower. More Yuuzhan Vong are on the way soon: one more ship on this day, and one within the week. Danni and Reglia knock out the Yuuzhan Vong that enter their prison chamber, and take their cloakers and breathing creatures. Da'Gara stops them, and takes them to an assembly of Yuuzhan Vong. Another worldship arrives, and Prefect Ma'Shraid enters. They speak through the telepathic war coordinator, the yammosk. Then, they feed Miko to the giant creature.
Han, Chewie, and Anakin arrive at Sernpidal, and something strange is going on. The planet's moon is abnormally close. Their ship is raided, and people make off with some of their cargo. They then take off, and do a reading. They find that something on the planet was pulling the moon closer and closer. The item is just east of Sernpidal City. Anakin volunteers to investigate, and the mayor goes with him, while Han and Chewie round up as many people to take on the Falcon as is possible. The planet has less than seven hours until the moon impacts. Luke and Mara arrive at Belkadan, only to find it covered with gas. They decide to land to see if there are any survivors. They go down, and have trouble locating the ExGal-4 outpost, but eventually, they succeed. Yomin Carr readies his weapons as he watches the Jade Sabre land.
Luke and Mara land. The ground is covered with dead beetles. They get into the compound, and find one living beetle, but it is slowing down. Mara notices some goo at its mandibles. They search through, and all the computers are still on and working. They have R2 begin downloading everything from the main computer, as they split up to explore the compound. Mara finds the journal of a scientist, and a beetle in a bottle. In the journal, it says that Carr kept saying that the disaster was just a weather pattern. It ended saying, "I believe it is linked to." It ends here. She hears a screech from R2 in the other room, and runs there.
Artoo is hit by Yomin Carr. Mara rushes in and fights him. She has many surprises from his fighting tactics and equipment, but ends up killing him. Before he dies, Yomin Carr says that she was worthy. They then regroup, finish the download, and take off. Mara's disease worsens. They think that there might be some sort of connection between the beetles, Belkadan, and her disease. They find two balls there. One of them inverts, and says many things in a foreign tongue. They then look at some of the data Artoo downloaded. They find out that the comet came in the Helska system. They set coordinates for there. Miko struggles. The yammosk doesn't kill him; it just brings him in close many times over again, tormenting him. Danni feels bad for him in his suffering, but is only able to watch.
Anakin and the mayor arrive at a crater, and find a living thing inside, the source of the problem. Anakin shoots at it, but it has no effect. The creature then reverses its pull, resulting in it moving deeper into the ground. The Falcon then comes to pick them up. The mayor refuses to go, and instead takes a thermal detonator and destroys both himself and the creature to ensure that it would not harm any other planet. Da'Gara connects his mind to that of the yammosk, and they exchange thoughts. He then contacts Nom Anor. He says that Sernpidal will die this day, but that several ships are escaping. He has dispatched four full battle groups to intercept and follow them to the next planet. There, open warfare will begin.
Chewbacca loads two children into the relative safety of the Falcon, and then debris falls onto a shuttle. He and Anakin go to remove it. They succeed, allowing many lives to be saved. The winds are escalating now, as the moon is approaching. Anakin and Chewbacca save another toddler. The Falcon is too high for Chewbacca to get in. He tosses Anakin up to Han. Then, the ground shifts, and Chewbacca is thrown. Anakin rushes to the controls to move the ship to Chewbacca. Just as he is getting into position, the wind knocks a building onto the Falcon. Anakin realizes that if he waits any longer, they will all die. He heads skyward, leaving a helpless Chewbacca on the doomed planet. Luke and Mara arrive at Helska IV. Luke takes off in his X-wing to get a look. His systems are shut down, and he begins plunging toward the planet, caught in some sort of tractor beam. Han is very upset about Chewie's death. He takes his anger out on Anakin, saying that he was the one that left Chewie.
Luke fires up his shields, only to have them depleted almost immediately. However, this distracts the beam, and he is able to move back up just a little bit. Luke shoots nine torpedoes and manages to get to the surface safely, but several of the coralskippers begin bearing down on him. He is having trouble escaping in his damaged X-wing. Han decides to go back to Sernpidal for a hopeless search for Chewie, when someone calls for help. Several insects are attacking them. The ship blows up, destroying the attackers, too. Then, Han sees a ship in the distance transmitting a distress signal. It is Kyp. Han calls Anakin for a copilot's help, but while he accepts his help as copilot, he shows no sign of forgiveness.
The Falcon breaks from the convoy to get Kyp's X-wing. Han thinks it is a trap when several of the insects are there and start attacking the Falcon. Anakin rushes to the guns, but can't get them all, as some are on the hull. He rushes to the power re-routing area, and puts the main cable on the hull. This shocks all of the creatures, and they relinquish their grip. He then goes back to the gun and blasts them. They then attach a tow cable onto the X-wing and bring it back to the convoy. The Jade Sabre comes to pick up Luke's X-wing. They decide to go back to Dubrillion. There are thousands of rock-like ships on Helska IV; with an unknown number on nearby planets.
Kyp is indeed alive, and he joins Han on the Falcon and informs him of the situation. They then detect some of the rocky starfighters. They have to get all of the ships, even the slow ones, to Dubrillion. Anakin does some calculations. They will beat the enemy there... but not by a broad amount of time. Han is clearly angry. Here, he tries to blame Lando, saying that it's his fault that he was there. Lando points out that Han saved many lives. He says that he has plenty of guns and ships; it won't be a problem concerning a shortage of equipment; rather, it'll be a shortage of people to operate them. Leia tries to console Han. The kids sympathize with Anakin.
Leia tries to contact the New Republic for assistance. The Rejuvenator is the closest ship with substantial firepower. It is 3 days away. The Yuuzhan Vong ships will be here in less than 2. No-one has heard from Luke. The kids convince their parents to let them commandeer some TIEs. They have to stay close to the planet, where they could use the projected shields. Leia occupies Chewie's seat as copilot of the Falcon. Kyp flies as a gunner. The battle begins. The outer ships have trouble. Finally, they fall back near the Falcon. The Falcon's screen practically turns red, as the enemy blips are so concentrated.
The Solo children start in the atmosphere, where Belt-Runner I can provide shielding for them, as they have been instructed by their parents. When the Belt-Runner I is disabled, they decided that they'd be just as safe here as they are in space. They head up and save a pilot, but as soon as their parents find out, they are not happy. The coralskippers are overwhelming them. They are instructed to go back. Anakin, however, has an idea; they'd run the belt before, so they should be able to outfly the enemy. They go in, and connect their minds and senses through the Force, giving them each extra pairs of eyes and ears. The link didn't last long, though, and Anakin soon finds himself spinning. He pulls the hyperspace lever to avoid being hit. Han and Leia are not happy. They instruct the twins to return to planet as they search for their youngest son.
The twins land, and are greeted by cheering crowds. Jacen thinks about their mind connection, and regards the fact that his view of the Force needs amending. Anakin hoped that his siblings are alright; he doesn't want to have caused their deaths. Even though he is alone, he could accept his death, but not the death of Jacen and Jaina. He, too, considers his view of the Force, and considers amending it. The third worldship has arrived. They have tested the planetary defenses. The yammosk will soon spawn, and they will install the new one on either Dubrillion or Destrillion. Also, Belkadan is almost finished with its transformation; they will be able to grow yorik coral there. They are soon ready to begin the second level of conquest perpetuation.
Han is furious. They set out, looking for Anakin. Leia senses him; he is alive, at least. Luke and Lando study the coralskipper, which is actually a living thing. Luke then learns of Chewie's death. Luke tells Lando that he needs to get to Helska IV. He knows that's where they are. He asks if he had any mining ships that could get through ice; Lando just laughs. Later, when Luke is alone, he heard Anakin's call; he is alright. He knew that Leia heard it too, and that she'd soon bring him back. Leia and Han find Anakin through the Force. He comes back on the ship. Han hugs him, then scolds him. There is a description of how the mining craft will work here.
C-3PO translates the message from Yomin Carr. It says that his work is done for now, and that the movement of the Praetorite Vong is under way. Threepio is then taken to the coralskipper to see what he can learn from it. He learned that it was living, and "refueled" by eating rocks, which it could spit out for ammo, or as one method of moving (getting an opposite reaction). The other method is by the thumb-sized creature on the nose, which works by focusing gravity fields. Luke reasons that the same type of creature was used to "pull" the shields from his ship in his earlier encounter with them. There is good news, though; some considerable New Republic firepower arrives to help guard. Mara is skeptical about Luke's mining plan. Luke reassures her that everything will be alright. Jacen and Jaina have different plans. They decide to take the mining vessel and its carrier ship, instead of Luke and Mara. They leave a message with R2.
The Star Destroyer Rejuvenator's captain, Commander Warshack Rojo, wants to go and face the coralskippers on Helska IV immediately in order to get back to the "more important" issues of the New Republic. Leia wants to wait six days, when more firepower could be taken out to the system. Rojo is convinced he could handle it, though. Just then, they see the mining ship take off, and R2 comes in with a message. Han is angry at first, but Luke explains that they were Jedi; they would start having many big responsibilities. They then decide to move out (at the insistence of Rojo), with Han, Leia, Anakin, and Lando in the Falcon, Luke and Mara in the Jade's Sabre, and Kyp leading a squadron of fighters.
Jacen fires off toward the ice planet. He fires a booster jet, and that may have alerted the enemies to his presence. Once he gets into the planet, he feels a cry for help. Jaina is concerned about the thruster jet that Jacen fired. She tries to hide her carrier ship, the Merry Miner. She is not successful, and some coralskippers begin closing in on her weaponless ship. Jacen begins swimming, and sees a base in the water. He senses the strange call near him, up near the crust of the planet. Several other swimmers approach him.
Just as Jaina is about to be destroyed, the Rejuvenator came out of hyperspace to her rescue. Kyp Durron called to her asking sarcastically if she needed help. Jacen is waved toward the end of the line. The person in front of him has many tattoos and scars, and only one eye. The people have progressively fewer marks around their eyes (the only part visible), and Jacen figured that he was last. They get to a small room near the crust, and there are two people in there. Jacen recognizes the Jedi Miko, but he wasn't the source of the call. It was the girl with him. He is grunted at, and it is clear that he, as the lowest ranking warrior, is to wait outside as a sentry. Just as they are to take Miko away to "kill" him, they notice the saber on Jacen's belt. He begins to fight them.
Prefect Da'Gara watches the Battle of Helska IV unfold through the yammosk. A battle ensues. At first things proceed well; then, thousands of coralskippers are launched from the planet. Things go downhill; Republic ships are being taken out. Rojo is taking his Star Destroyer down to the planet, but the brilliant coordination of the coralskippers is causing major damage to his ship. Anakin catches on to the tactic. He knows that the ships are somehow connected, like he and his siblings were earlier, through the Force. Jacen fights down on Helska IV. Danni manages to get one of the Yuuzhan Vong's suits off and send him into the cold water. Then, a thud bug hits her. Rojo has clearly underestimated these forces. The coralskippers take out the Rejuvenator.
Jacen is having trouble against the remaining four Yuuzhan Vong. He can defend for now, but cannot concentrate on attacking, or he'll be killed. Two of the Yuuzhan Vong begin struggling, a Human hand on their faces. Miko manages to get to the Vong's noses, the release point of the cloakers, and then he takes them down into the cold water with him as a last, heroic act against the Vong. Jacen is able to take out the other two. He takes Danni, and the two squeeze uncomfortably into the cramped mining ship. The space battle is proceeding badly. The New Republic forces need to retreat, but Jacen is still on the planet. Just as they are getting desperate, Jacen blasts out of the planet. Jaina wastes no time and picks him up in a very impressive maneuver, and, as if in one action, escapes to hyperspace at the same time. The others follow her. Jacen comforts Danni in the small, cramped ship.
The protagonists exchange stories, and they figure out that it was the yammosk that allowed the extremely efficient coordination of the coralskippers. They decide that they have to take it out. They decide to use shieldships, vessels Lando uses on Nkllon, in order to evaporate some ice, thus stealing energy from the planet and destroying it. The commanders of the Republic ranger ships don't want to go in; they want to wait for reinforcements. Luke knows that they need to catch the enemy by surprise, and the way to do that is to go back- immediately. Kyp decides to go with his starfighters.
Some ships are lost coming out of hyperspace, as they have to come in extremely close in order to gain the full surprise. The battle begins. When Da'Gara realizes there is another attack, he rushes to the yammosk. He reckons the only reason they'd come back would be to rescue Danni, who may still be on the planet (his assumption is wrong). He is baffled as to the use of the shield ships. The yammosk thinks the tactic is to reflect energy to take out the dovin basals and surface cannons. Da'Gara wants Danni Quee to remain with him.
Luke (down close to the planet), notices a drop in temperature. Dense fog gives him cover. Jaina is piloting the Jade Sabre with Mara next to her on the guns. She cannot establish a Force link with Han, as he is not Force-sensitive. But he is an excellent pilot, and they fly well together, anyway. She is startled when she makes a run on a coralskipper, and Mara fails to fire; she has passed out. Jaina jumps over to her, and the ship is hit, plummeting toward the planet. Jaina rushes back to the controls, but they keep falling. Luke keeps detecting the temperature dropping. He is dismayed when he sees his wife's ship falling toward the planet. Leia and Han see it, too. Luke rushes to intercept, and just as he passes under it, he flips over, and fires his repulsors, giving the Sabre a lift, and it re-stabilizes. It is getting very cold. Ice crystals are forming in the atmosphere of Helska IV.
It is looking bad for the New Republic forces. Some shield ships are being destroyed. Suddenly, some coralskippers begin colliding. The coordination is clearly lost. Coralskippers begin retreating back to the planet. The planet looked distorted, like they were looking at it through a glass globe. It is the fourth state of matter, the Mezzicanley Wave. Now the ice will begin expanding, and the planet will soon explode. Han has to turn the Falcon around, despite the fact that Luke is still down there, a similar situation, so similar, to Anakin's retreat from Chewie. He has other lives to save on the Falcon; he cannot put them in danger for Luke. Helska IV blows. They are relieved to see that Luke's X-wing has escaped. R2 is quite frozen from that chilling experience on Helska IV. The remaining Vong forces are being hunted by Kyp and others. Mara is losing her fight with her disease, and there is nothing Luke can do directly. But he could study the bug that she felt was connected to it on Belkadan. Mara had discussed going alone to Dagobah, or some other Force-fueled place, to meditate on what was happening inside her.
Leia realizes what a threat they'd just faced and how much trouble they'd be in if more came. She knows she'll have to take on new responsibilities that she really doesn't want, as Ambassador Leia. Nom Anor is on a small core world, stirring hatred for the New Republic. He knows that there are Yuuzhan Vong warriors running throughout the galaxy, with no way to control them. He knows they would recover, though. Han remembers Chewie here, at the destroyed Sernpidal. He then feels as if the bubble that protects his family is broken, and the galaxy is suddenly a more dangerous place. He now isn't so confident that Mara will survive. Leia tries to reassure him that she would, though.
- "I have fought the worst of all wars, and witnessed the redemption of evil. I've seen balance restored to the Force. But order can turn to chaos… as it did when I was born. Now, with my loved ones and my loyal allies, I face a new challenge unlike any before. And I'm not sure if this time we can win."
- ―Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, in a Vector Prime commercial
The novel's fourth chapter was published as a preview in Star Wars Insider 45. A television commercial for Vector Prime was also aired, featuring narration by Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, speaking over a montage of scenes from the original trilogy while "The Emperor's Theme" played.
Upon release, Vector Prime hit the New York Times Bestsellers List, going on to spend a total of four weeks on the list. At the time of its publication, Vector Prime proved to be controversial among Star Wars fans because its plot called for the death of Chewbacca, making the Wookiee the first major character from the original trilogy to be permanently killed off in the Expanded Universe novels. In the Star Wars Insider 83 article "20 Most Memorable Moments of the Expanded Universe," by Abel G. Peña and Enrique Guerrero, Chewbacca's death was listed first.
Chewbacca's death in the novel received widespread coverage in the form of articles, memorials, and tributes by newspapers across the United States after the book's release.
Vector Prime author R. A. Salvatore received death threats from some readers. In an interview with some of the New Jedi Order series' creators, Sue Rostoni, Shelly Shapiro, and Lucy Wilson expressed that Salvatore's treatment was one of their greatest regrets from the series. Salvatore would later remark in 2015 at the Salt Lake Comic Con that despite some negative fan outcry, most of the response to Vector Prime that he had received had been positive.
After The Walt Disney Company bought Lucasfilm in 2012, it was announced in 2014 that the Expanded Universe continuity would be discarded to explore new story lines. According to the Holocron continuity database keeper Leland Chee, Chewbacca's death in Vector Prime was a key factor in the decision.
- ISBN 9780345428448; October 5, 1999; Del Rey; US hardcover
- ISBN 9780345428455; July 5, 2000; Del Rey; US paperback
- ISBN 9780345467409; June 3, 2003; Del Rey; US eBook
- ISBN 2258053331; February 2000; Presses de la Cité; French-language hardcover
- ISBN 009940995X; August 1, 2000; Arrow Books Ltd.; UK paperback
- ISBN 837245311X; 2000; Amber; Polish-language edition
- ISBN 8495070278; November 2002; Alberto Santos Editor; Spanish-language hardcover
- ISBN 2265076570; July 2, 2003; Fleuve Noir; French-language paperback
- ISBN 5040084994; October 2004; Russian-language edition
- ISBN 9788025206522; 2007; EGMONT ČR; Czech-language paperback
- ISBN 8495070308; Alberto Santos Editor; Spanish-language paperback
|Organizations and titles||Sentient species||Vehicles and vessels||Weapons and technology||Miscellanea|
Organizations and titles
Vehicles and vessels
Weapons and technology
- "New Jedi Order: An Exclusive Vector Prime Excerpt"—Star Wars Insider 45
- "Around the Galaxy"—Star Wars Galaxy Collector 7
- "ComicScan: 'Til Death Do They Part"—Star Wars Galaxy Collector 8
- Star Wars: New Jedi Order Round-Robin Interview
- "20 Most Memorable Moments of the Expanded Universe"—Star Wars Insider 83
- "A Long Time Ago...."—Star Wars Insider 102
- Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle
- The Essential Reader's Companion
- Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle, Updated Edition
- Star Wars Year By Year: A Visual History, Updated and Expanded Edition
Notes and references
- The Essential Reader's Companion
- "New Jedi Order: An Exclusive Vector Prime Excerpt"—Star Wars Insider 45
- The New Jedi Order: Balance Point
- "A Long Time Ago...."—Star Wars Insider 102
- "20 Most Memorable Moments of the Expanded Universe"—Star Wars Insider 83
- Star Wars: New Jedi Order Round-Robin Interview
- Star Wars: Why We Killed Chewie. Big Shiny Robot. October 2, 2015.