Eagle's Death

After many years of service to the powers of the great civil war, Eagle had grown very weak in the force. His commitment to the light side of the force was not enough to pull him away from the paperwork and stress of Defender Wing and Rogue Squadron. Although he was merely the 2nd in command of the wing, there was still a lot to do and his strength had been taken out of him slowly but surely. As He walked through the halls of the Bulwark Cruiser "White Star" the cadets and pilots that passed gave him a cold shoulder, he was always locked in his office doing something, and rarely got out and talked to the new recruits like he used to in the old days.

Since his friend Ravenger had disappeared a few months ago, things had not been the same for Eagle, the force was not as easily accessible, and a sickness overtook his body that no medical droid could fix. Days of meditation helped him keep going, but eventually even that became ineffective. The journey into the Unknown had taken them to Endor, not far from his adopted home of Naichom, and a trip there seemed to be in order, he had not heard from Morpheus in over 2 years

The only son of the surely now deceased Emperor Ripper boarded his YT-2000 transport "Icefire". Brakiss would cover for him and Zorro had been given permanent command of Rogue, so he had all the time he needed…. After traveling for about 6 hours, the starlines turned back to stars and the orange planet of Naichom appeared in front of him. As he entered the system, something hit his hull, hard. Looking out the transparisteel, Eagle saw a huge debris pile, scanning the remnants, the onboard computer brought up one particular piece, part of a TIE Fighter's hull. "Damn." Eagle said to himself, after scanning some more, Eagle found a flight transponder, it identified itself as the Obsidian Dragon Corvette "Anvil". Apparently there had been a battle above Naichom. Eagle fired the accelerators and went to the 1st moon, where the CRV "Pride of Naichom" and his most proud clone, Morpheus, were hidden. All that Eagle found there was the ship, totally deserted. Eagle docked with the Pride and made his way to the bridge, from there he cautiously tried to contact the Temple on the surface of the planet. Surely someone would still be there. No Response. Eagle brought up the temple on the control screen, or what was left of the temple. A scan of the temple showed no signs of activity for several months, but the turbolaser burns that scarred the surface were only a few days old. Hopefully the lower levels and his cloning tubes had survived, but before he could inspect, a Victory Star Destroyer II came up on his screens, alarmed, Eagle raised the Corvette's Shields and prepared for battle. The unidentified VSD II hailed the CRV, Eagle opened the channels up and this is what he heard. "This is Scott "Morpheus" Knight of the Naichom Defense Force, please identify yourself or be destroyed, you are trespassing on the property of the Galactic Empire." It was Morpheus, although slightly stronger than Eagle, his 3rd and best clone. After not hearing that voice in over 2 years, he was not quick to trust simply a voice, and scanned the VSD. It was an upgraded version of the VSD Inquisitor. Now called the VSD II Inquisitor, much bigger and equipped with a light-bending cloaking device. It was escorted by a Corellion Gunship, which identified itself as the "SilverKnight", and an even bigger ISD called the "Tyrant", the old Emperor's personal ship.

"Old Friend, we need to talk" Eagle said to the VSD on his screens, and pulled the "Pride" out from behind the moon and towards the Star Destroyer.

Morpheus was horrified to see the sickly state that Eagle was in, and helped him to the conference room. There Eagle met the 2nd in Command of the Naichom Defense force, Brig. General Arron Testt, the whole ship was manned with Naichomians, who had been recruited by the dark man who emerged from the forbidden temple in the desert, with Morpheus' technology and resources, and the Naichomians manpower, the NDF had successfully thwarted off threats from the Unknown regions, but the Obsidian Dragons were becoming a persistent threat. Morpheus explained that Eagle2 was currently serving on the ISD "Tyrant", that was a gift from the Emperor. Surprisingly enough Eagle had never even heard of such a gift, but they later explained that it was a gift from the Emperor Smoke, and Eagle wondered how long Smoke had known about the Riplan's base on Naichom.

Unfortunately, nothing had survived on the upper levels of the Temple, and they didn't have the time to excavate the site so they could get into the bowels of the compound. Eagle knew of a secret entrance in the mountain range a few kilometers away, and planned to take Morpheus there so they could rebuild the temple and his life, but all that was interrupted by a message from the bridge. "Admiral Knight, there is an incoming Obsidian Dragon task force, I'm afraid its an invasion force." The Bridge officer said. "An invasion force, no!" Arron Testt cried in anger. He ran to a panel and contacted the surface and began to make preparations for the assault.

"Four ships versus the biggest pirate gang in the Unknown regions, this is not good." Morpheus said to Eagle. "Scramble fighters" He said to the bridge officer.

All of the Obsidian Dragons' force of light cruisers, corvettes and starfighters had entered the Naichom system, more than a match for the four beat up ships.

Morpheus walked onto the bridge "Shields at maximum, battle stations everyone." He said to the communications officer. "Get the planetary defenses online and launch the fighters from the moon." Testt said to the starfighter commander.

"How are you on pilots?" Eagle asked Morpheus "We have enough, but some double as ground troops." He answered "Allright, I'm going to the hangar, get some people over on the "Pride of Naichom" and get it battle-ready." Eagle said to the gray Jedi.

A half-hour later, the first turbolaser strikes hit the ISD Tyrant, and the battle had begun.

The Hanger was backed up from ships launching, Eagle guided his commandeered TIE Advanced towards the exit. A turbolaser beam flashed to close to the TIE Interceptor in front of him and the person inside was incenerated with the ship. Eagle felt the wave of the force wash over him as he felt the battle that was ensuing between the combined Imperial ships and the Obsidian Dragon Pirate force, speeding up to full throttle, Eagle looked to his left, the glowing planet of Naichom was preparing for the almost assured invasion by the Dragons, Eagle felt a presence somewhere in orbit that disturbed him, but as he searched the planet for some kind of clue as to who it was, he was interrupted by a huge flash of light. Sensors quickly indicated that the CRV "Silver Knight" had gone up in flames. Quickly the pirate ships moved towards the flagship "Tyrant".

Eagle guided the T/A towards the closest enemy fighter, a slow-moving Ywing, he easily finished the dying fighter with a few blasts from the quad cannons and moved on. The other pilots were dropping like flies, and after racking up considerable kills and minor damage, Eagle's ship was out of torps and low on shields… One particular Xwing was giving him some trouble, so he tried to give him the slip, but he had apparently called for some help as Eagle noticed two more T/I's on his tail. Although he was trying to evade them as best as possible, he couldn't take on 3 fighters, and his guns were quickly knocked out, with no defences, all he could do was wait for death, or run. Eagle powered down his engines and waited for oblivion as the speakers crackled. "Oh no ya don't" came a voice over the comm. system, it was Brakiss Huron, Eagle's friend and XO of Defender Wing. Quickly one of the T/Is blew up and the other broke off, Brakiss' Xwing make quick work of the poorly trained pilot, but not before the enemy got a shot off that disabled Eagle's shields totally. All of Defender Wing was there, the shining hull of the Mon Calamari Cruiser Independence and the X, A, and Bwings flying past him gave Eagle a serious sense of relief, but suddenly he felt faint, lost consciousness and blacked out while the Dragons began to retreat, overwhelmed. Eventually, a pickup ship towed him back to the Inquisitor, The T/A, escorted by Brakiss landed and he was taken to the medical bay, but it was much to late for the Jedi Master.

Not much is known about why Aquilus Riplan died, but it is now believed by his friends in the Alliance that he died of a disease planted by the Empire many years before his defection back to the rebels. Morpheus and the Naichom Defense Force lived on to keep the planet safe from the now ever-present threats in the unknown regions, Defender Wing went on without their other XO, and the universe was never quite the same again.