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Marvel Star Wars #37
IN MORTAL COMBAT
Published: July 1980
Story: ARCHIE GOODWIN
Art: CARMINE INFANTINO and GENE DAY
Summary

Vader and Luke take separate paths to Crystal Valley. As Luke descends, crystal trees thrust from the ground from chemical reactions to the mist. Vader senses the Falcon 's arrival and feels events are proceeding as planned. Han lands in a clearing beyond the crystals and Leia grabs Orman's blaster during landing. Two TIEs violate the cloister to attack, but Han shoots them. Orman escapes to Crystal Valley, where Luke struggles to avoid the shards. R2 follows so that 3PO, via laserwave link, can lead him safely to the Falcon , but Luke is determined to fight Vader. A crystal hits Orman, stopping in mid-air to press him down, and Vader gloats at his suffering. Using a visi-cube, he shows Orman how corrupt Domina has grown despite efforts to keep her pure. Anguished, Orman begs Vader to kill him, but Vader has another fate in mind. As the moons rise, Leia and Han rush to tell Domina that Orman is alive and to stop the duel. Vader hurls a crystal at Luke, who deflects it with his 'saber. Luke senses fear and realizes he could win, but a crystal pummels him. Barely missing it, he slices Vader's chest. 3PO's sensors detect something amiss and Luke realizes the Force is clouding his mind and holds back, but Vader attacks again and Luke has no choice but to kill him. As the body falls, Luke realizes he's been fighting Orman all along. Nearby, Vader explains that the illusion was to punish Tagge, test Luke's limits, and show how inferior his powers are to Vader's. Luke moves to attack, jumping as a crystal arises in his way. Realizing he can't win, he escapes with R2. Han and Leia tell Domina the truth as Vader's TIE departs and Luke arrives. Domina blames Luke for Orman's death, and though she is finished as All-High Priestess and the Order will favor the Rebels, she vows revenge. As the Falcon leaves Monastery, Han says that Vader accomplished nothing, but Luke knows Vader needed to test him before facing him. He worries that since Vader need not be cautious now, tough times await them. In the Drexel System, Jabba finds Crimson Jack's ship and learns that Han destroyed it, furious since he was Jack's backer. A bounty hunter later tries to kill Han and Chewie on Ord Mantell, and before dying says that Jabba has reinstated the bounty to cover losses. Though they decide to stay with the Rebels for safety, they know the future will be difficult. EnsViews Comic Review

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"EnsViews" are copyright 1997-8 by Paul Ens. They are posted to rec.arts.sf.starwars.misc, emailed to Dark Horse Comics and archived on theForce.net. Cover scans are courtesy of Mark Lookabaugh.

Titles, Cover images, Marvel Comics, and the Marvel logo are trademarks of Marvel Comic Group and its respective Licensors.

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