WARNING: THIS STORY CONTAINS SPOILERS AND POSSIBLE SPOILERS FOR THE LAST JEDI AND STAR WARS EPISODE IX. Title: Star Wars Episode IX, The First Sky Walker. Author: Cairns Tony. Characters: Surviving and deceased characters of the ST; fanfic versions of the Kellie Marie Tran, Benicio Del Toro, Laura Dern and Veronica Ngo characters; Lando Calrissian, Zeb Orrelios; characters of my own creation. Genre: Drama, Action, some humour. Timeline: starts several hours/a few days (according to characters) after the events of TLJ. Summary: I have provided an opening crawl by way of introduction. The story picks up from where TLJ left off. There are also several flashbacks. Notes: A special thank you once more to @Claire1976 for helping me to shape this story and provide generous assistance in tweaking the bits that didn't quite work. The story is written more in a 'book' style than my TLJ story (which was more like a film adaptation in its pacing) so as to expand the narrative and give me greater creative freedom in how I tell the story. It is therefore much longer than the previous story. In this I aim to try and tie up all loose ends; well nearly all of them... Disclaimers: I wrote this story from start to finish in the month of June of this year. Some of the rumours that had emerged since the trailer for TLJ were used in my previous story. Others have been used here. I left the story unchanged after the emergence of the Behind-the-scenes Sizzle Reel. And finally: As before, I welcome feedback including constructive criticism. Further, if anyone wants me to explain something about the plot (in a non-spoilery way) then I will endeavour to do so. I hope those who have followed my story for TLJ up until now will join me on the journey to the story's ultimate conclusion. If you have discovered this thread and don't know which story I mean, please follow the link below if you wish to read the one that precedes this one: http://boards.theforce.net/threads/...last-jedi-contains-spoilers-for-tlj.50045624/ Episode IX Star Wars: The First Sky Walker. The forces of the FIRST ORDER continue to sweep across the galaxy. The RESISTANCE and their allies have banded together in a desperate attempt to prevent total defeat. Jedi Master Luke Skywalker searches in vain through the Force for his lost apprentice Breha. But the galaxy’s last best hope is now in the hands of the enemy. And now Supreme Leader Snoke lays plans for his final victory with an ancient threat that has lain dormant for millennia. If successful, it will see the entire galaxy plunge into an eternal darkness. Prologue. Duality. To most of the galaxies inhabitants it is a universal principle by which they make sense of their environment: light and dark; hot and cold; male and female; revealed and hidden; good and evil… these opposites are taken for granted. The Jedi of old believed there were light and dark sides to the Force. They strived to maintain a balance between the two by denying one of them. This cosmic struggle went on for millennia. They believed it led them to a deeper understanding of the Force. How wrong they were. _____________________ ONE. From space, Arco glittered in the darkness. Numerous cities dotted the night side of the planet with light, like so many precious jewels. Billions of citizens would normally be asleep on the side facing away from the system’s sun, but not tonight… Tonight most of them looked to the heavens in terror. The light show they were watching was not there for entertainment; it could spell the end of everything they knew. Already citizens of the planet were making preparations to flee and many had already done so. The forces of the First Order were fully engaged in battle with those of the Resistance and their allies. The Populist remnants of the Republic, local militias and numerous private vessels had joined forces with the Resistance and were throwing everything they had at the First Order to try and turn the advancing tide sweeping across the galaxy. Hundreds of ships of all sizes were involved in fierce combat. Salvos between capital ships and fighter squadrons filled space with a lattice of deadly laser fire. Explosions went off all over the field of combat as ships were damaged or destroyed. “Black Two, you’ve got one on your tail!” Poe yelled. He watched as Paige rolled her X-Wing hard to starboard as green laser fire narrowly missed her port engine nacelle. She then pulled her ship up hard as the Tie fighter overshot her. Poe shot past her in pursuit of the tie and nailed it with a single shot. The ship blew apart. No sooner had this happened, then BB-8 squealed over his intercom. Poe went into a sharp dive at the droid’s warning of the tie fighter that had latched onto him. The tie matched his manoeuvre. Poe threaded the Black One through laser fire between two capital ships and still the tie fighter kept pace. They’re good… thought Poe as he continued to duck and weave to throw off the tie’s targeting computer. Suddenly the pursuing ship exploded and Black Two flew through the resulting cloud of debris. “Thought I’d return the favour Black leader,” said Paige. No sooner had she done so, then she rolled hard to port in pursuit of another tie. Poe looked up and could see members of Red Squadron engaged in dogfights with the enemy. He saw three ties explode in quick succession. He latched onto a fourth and dispatched it quickly. They were gradually turning the tide. Finally something was going their way he thought. His intercom came to life, “Black leader, this is Lando Calrissian. I’m getting energy readings that are off the scale about twenty klicks ahead. Something is coming out of hyperspace. Something big”. Poe saw the Falcon shoot past him going in the opposite direction. He pulled his ship around in a tight turn to face whatever it was that had just joined them. His eyes widened in shock. A gargantuan ship hung in space. Its hull was black but gave off an eerie orange glow. It appeared to be carved out of partly cooled molten lava and looked like no other vessel Poe had seen before. However the most startling thing about the ship apart from its size was its main weapon. Poe recognised the enormous red circle on the prow as a scaled down version of the weapon used by Starkiller Base. “I have a bad feeling about this,” he said. BB-8 whistled in agreement. “The main weapon is powering up!” said Lando. Poe could hear Chewie roar something over the intercom. He didn’t speak the Wookiee’s language but the meaning was clear… They watched helplessly as a massive beam of energy poured out of the ship’s red eye. Several ships, both friend and foe were caught between it and the planet and were vapourised. It struck Arco on its dark side, turning night into day. As it did so, it spread out through the planet’s atmosphere superheating everything, incinerating all organic matter; causing oceans to boil, and rock to melt. The ship may not have had the power to blow the planet apart, but the effect of the weapon was equally as devastating as Starkiller Base. In short order the Resistance and their allies found they had no planet to defend. In the ensuing confusion the First Order fleet began to turn the tide back in their favour. The allies began a disordered retreat as Admiral Statura tried his best to cut his mounting losses. “Everybody get to safety! Make the jump to hyperspace as soon as you can! We need to regroup and…” the Admiral was cut short as the bridge of the Starlight took a direct hit from a turbolaser on a First Order Star Destroyer. The ship started to roll slowly to port. As it did so it was repeatedly pounded by enemy weapons. Most of the Resistance fleet had managed to jump to hyperspace. The last thing Poe saw as he pulled the lever was a massive ball of light as the Starlight’s reactor exploded. General Hux surveyed the now dead planet from the bridge of the Death Knell. He felt an enormous sense of satisfaction at how the weapon had performed. The Supreme Leader would be pleased; this he knew. The First Order command ship would deal with stubborn resistance once and for all. He turned towards Admiral Mollen, “Give the order to deal with any remaining Resistance activity in the system. We must delay their retreat as much as possible. Pursue enemy ships along their last known trajectories.” They had successfully drawn out the Resistance and their allies and Hux knew that if Snoke’s plan worked, they would soon have the location of the Resistance base as well. He spoke again to the Admiral, “I will be in my ready room. I do not wish to be disturbed unless there is an emergency.” “Sir,” said Admiral Mollen. Hux strode off the bridge. In less than a minute he had locked the door and stood in front of his com. He activated a secure channel. A thirty centimetre tall holographic representation of Captain Phasma appeared on his desk. As she appeared she removed her helmet so as to dispel any doubt of who she was. “Is it done?” he asked. “Yes sir. No-one suspects,” Phasma said. “Good. We cannot afford for anything to go wrong. Now we wait…” said Hux. “Now we wait,” agreed Phasma.