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[Clone Wars]
Events that occur between 22 years and 19 years before the Battle of Yavin.

[ no cover image available ]

Short Story
First published in
Star Wars Insider #66:

Elusion Illusion
Michael A. Stackpole
Paizo Publishing
Story published as:
Short Story (2003, 2005)

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A week after the Battle of Geonosis, Mace Windu summons up to the empty Council Chamber one of that battle’s survivors – Aayla Secura. She, and a Caamasi Jedi named Ylenic It’kla, are assigned to travel to Corellia undercover as smugglers, and there extract one Ratri Tane, a former Techno Union researcher who seeks to trade – he and his family’s safety for files and a working prototype of a weapon the Union was secretly developing for the war. Since Corellia has declared itself neutral in the war, this will be especially difficult as the Confederacy are looking for him as well. 
The two Jedi travel in a yacht, the Flare. As they fly through hyperspace, Aayla admits to Ylenic that she doubts her ability to handle this mission. She is inexperienced, and the stakes are high. Ylenic counters that this is exactly why Mace chose her for the mission – her doubts prevent her from being arrogant, with all that entails. Landing at Coronet City, the two travel through Treasure Ship Row and stop at a cantina called Homestar. They spot Tane there… and so does a pair of Gotals who open fire on them! The melee that results attracts the attention of CorSec agents led by one Rostek Horn. Horn buys their story, noting that the Gotals and the others who fought were “small-time hoodlums who hire out to whomever’s being free with credits.” 
Lorfo, an annoying Toydarian who’d tried to flirt with Aayla at the Homestar, reappears and offers to lead them to the Gotals and their boss. Which he does, leading them to a captive Tane – and a trap! A Corellian thug named Tendir Blue gloats that now he can deliver Tane, his files and prototype (which he stupidly kept with him) and two Jedi to Count Dooku. They give up their lightsabers, trapped…and then Aayla has a vision of a lightsaber coming to her hand. The Gotals sense the Force, and Blue shoots Tane. Suddenly a lightsaber does come to her hand, and another fight ensues. When it’s over, and Blue is knocked out, it turns out Aayla was a pawn in an intricate game of misdirection…because “Tane” is actually Master Nejaa Halcyon, who absorbed the blaster bolt from Blue with the Force. Nejaa, along with Ylenic, Rostek and Lorfo, used Aayla’s status as a Geonosis survivor (and hence a target for the Separatists) to keep the Separatists off of the real Tane’s scent. He’s already been relocated, and the files and prototype that Blue retook are sabotaged. Furthermore, this will convince the Jedi of Corellia that they can’t stay out of the fight. But, Aayla notes, how can Blue return to his master without Dooku piecing together that it was all a deception? A good point – and one she sees an answer to…
When Blue awakens, he’s in a corridor and Lorfo is pulling him along, trying to escape Aayla (“The Jedi you didn’t kill!”). He squawks that Blue killed Ylenic and stumbled out wounded. When Aayla appears behind him, Blue assumes Lorfo’s lies are truth and throws the Toydarian at the Jedi to make good his escape. He flies off into space, bound for Count Dooku, unaware that he’s working for the Jedi. A nice tidy solution, courtesy of Aayla. “Must be why I was put in charge of this mission, don’t you think?”

This story occurs 7 days after the Battle of Geonosis, approximately 22 years before the Battle of Yavin.

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