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

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Short Story
First published in
Star Wars Insider #65:

The Pengalan Tradeoff
Aaron Allston
Paizo Publishing
Story published as:
Short Story (2003, 2006)

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A Republic agent reports the Confederacy has set up a secret factory on Pengalan IV, working on experimental missiles designed to punch through the armor of Republic starfighters. The troop transport Sea Legacy heads there at once and investigates a reactivated manufacturing facility with a group of gunships containing clonetroopers. Among the troopers is a Republic Intelligence accountant named Joram Kithe, assigned to observe the troopers and report back whether more money should be invested in the clone armies. The platoon heads up to the facility, planning to set explosives. But the whole thing turns out to be a trap – gunship after gunship is blown to bits by Geonosian corvettes, Trade Federation starfighters, the works. The gunship Joram came in makes it back into the air, but it doesn’t get far and crashes into a canyon…
Joram and six troopers survive the crash, and the surviving troopers are left wondering who’s in charge now that their lieutenant’s dead. Joram is forced to take charge of the stranded platoon, and he comes up with the idea of luring in a Confederacy ship and seizing it. Since the troopers don’t have names, he gives them nicknames – Tooth, Digger, Mapper, etc. To his surprise, the troopers warm to this and seemingly adopt him into their group. They reactivate their wrecked gunship’s inertial compensator and wait in hiding. Ten STAPs and an airspeeder eventually pick up the compensator on their sensors and fly into the ambush. The troopers and Joram take the airspeeder with two STAPs loaded in the back and head for the village of Tur Lorkin through the canyons. Setting up a temporary camp, Joram admits the troopers are everything the Kaminoans promised. If they lack anything, it’s….”come to think of it, you don’t lack anything I can think of,” Joram lies. “And since you men are exactly like all the other thousands of clone troopers, the Republic obviously has one magnificent army.” The troopers exchange strange looks at each other at that. 
Tur Lorkin turns out to be deserted – too deserted. Why is this town here, Joram wonders. And why does it have three spaceship bays?? Joram and Tooth pick the biggest one and investigate. They find some big spaceships and a load of containers – the missiles they were sent to find! The facility is underground! Joram’s all for calling in the Republic, but Tooth disagrees – they were sent here to blow up that facility, and they’re gonna do it if it takes every last one of them! After an argument between Tooth and the troopers, they ask Joram (who admitted earlier he was a coward) to join them. He agrees reluctantly, but says it’s Tooth’s mission to lead. 
The mission is a success, though Tooth and two other troopers are killed in the process. The surviving platoon members, including Joram, take off in a stolen yacht to rejoin the Sea Legacy. One of the troopers, Digger, tells Joram there’s something he should know – he and his fellow platoon aren’t regular clonetroopers. They were made to be a little more self-reliant than the average, more capable of initiative. Joram, he tells him, was supposed to assume they were normal troopers and report as such to the Republic. Joram agrees – “It’s never a good idea to foul up a cover-up until you know what it’s there for. But why did you tell me?”

Synopsis taken from Christopher G. McElroy's Time Tales, www.theforce.net/timetales.

This story occurs 2 months after the Battle of Geonosis, approximately 22 years before the Battle of Yavin.

Related Stories (in chronological order):

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