Code named the Emperor's Hand, Mara Jade became one of the Emperor's most important associates. She was trained in the ways of the Force and to use a lightsaber. Mara was also taught spy techniques and political intrigue. She also had a unique ability to hear the Emperor call from anywhere in the galaxy. She was sent to complete the missions that normal stormtroopers or other troopers could not handle. Mara was able to stop traitors, enemies of the Emperor, and bring down bureaucracies.
Few knew who Mara was. Those who had met her thought she was one of the Emperor's toys. Still they thought of her in a respectful way. Darth Vader was another servant to the Emperor. Mara tried to stay out of his way most of the time. When Vader was unable to capture his son Luke Skywalker, he was able to capture Han Solo instead. Solo was sent to Tatooine to be hung on a hutt gangster's wall. The Emperor knew Skywalker would try to free his friend and sent Jade to intercept him. Jade auditioned at Jabba's Palace as a dancer named Arica. She got the job. When Skywalker came Mara was unable to take him before Jabba ordered the Jedi's execution at the Great Pit of Carkoon. Mara sent word to her master. They were to discuss her punishment after her next mission. That discussion never took place. The Emperor died a few days after, at the Battle of Endor on the second Death Star. Mara had lost everything to a Jedi named Luke Skywalker.
Over the next four years Mara worked several jobs. She was a serving girl in Phorliss Cantina, part of a Caprioril swoop gang, and then a hyperdrive mechanic on Tropis-on-Varont. As a mechanic her life changed. One day two humans landed in need of repairs. The Captain Seoul and his partner Syndic Pandis Hart were talked into going on a Marodin safari hunt.
Celina, Jades new identity, knew the two pilots were not who they said they were. The captain was actually Talon Karrde and his partner was Tapper Quelev. Both were top smugglers. They had actually come to the planet looking into the safaris to see if much profit could be made as a business. The two looked around too much and Tapper ended up dead. Jade then went and rescued Karrde. On their way off planet they introduced each other and Mara asked for a job. Over the next couple of months Mara worked for Karrde who did not question her past. Although he knew something troubled her deep down.
Karrde's ship picked up a ditress signal from an X-wing fighter. Little did Mara know they would be helping Luke Skywalker. She did not agree with this and only wanted to kill him. Karrde would not allow it. He wanted to find out what Grand Admiral Thrawn wanted with the Jedi. When Thrawn visited the smuggler headquarters he knew Karrde was hiding something. Just before their landing on the planet of Myrkr Thrawn saw a Skipray Blastboat being chased by another one. In fact Mara was chasing Luke. When both crashed Mara took Luke into her custody and they headed for Hyllyard City just out of the giant forest. On the way Mara had to depend on Luke to save her from a vornskr attack which could have left her dead. Coming to the city Mara and Luke were picked up by Imperial troops sent there by the suspicious Thrawn. Karrde's people saved the two along with Han Solo who had been taken by Imperial troops also. The smugglers had Lando Calrissian's help also.
After the rescue Mara Jade and Karrde joined the New Republic. On a mission to Wayland Luke helped Mara regain her lost Force abilities. When a Jedi clone Joruus C'Baoth called Luke and Mara he attempted to turn them to the Dark Side. Luke resisted so the evil Jedi sent his clone of the hero called Luuke Skywalker into battle. Mara killed Joruus and the clone allowing herself to kill the man who ruined her life. In turn she came to terms with the real Skywalker.
On Coruscant Luke gave Mara his father's lightsaber which he had recovered from Bespin. He wanted her to help the New Republic and become a Jedi. She did not accept his offer and returned to Talon Karrde. Karrde had entered the Republic and created the Smugglers Alliance. He decided to retire and handed his operation over to Mara.
When Luke opened his Jedi Academy Mara visited for a few days. She had much to learn but no time to learn it. Mara had responsibilities to the Smugglers Alliance and to the fight against Admiral Daala. Mara rode into the Maw installation on the Millenium Falcon and opposed the Death Star Prototype. Afterwards she met up with Lando Calrissian who took over Kessel. He convinced her to help him transport spice throughout the galaxy using her smuggling guild. He had another offer for her also but she did not accept his romantic ideas.
Three years after Daala's defeat Mara helped give Leia information on what the Emperor's plans were on destroying the children of the Jedi. Mara proved to be a good friend and strong ally to the New Republic. If she completes her training Mara Jade could become one of the most powerful Jedi in history.
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Copyright © 2002 Nicholas Rhodes