Luke and Plif make a diplomatic call on Shawken with Rik, Dani, Chihdo, and Kiro. As the X-Wing and Moonshadow land, Luke warns them to behave, but Rik and Chihdo ignore him and Dani's plans involve only Luke. Santor, a local leader, greets them. Bored with conversation, Rik's gang visit catacombs unearthed during Imperial rule, while Luke, Kiro, and Plif visit Santor's home. Among the oldest known worlds, Shawken has been conquered many times and much has been forgotten. A guard gives the gang lanterns to search the caves, avoiding Dani's advances. At Santor's home, Luke offers Shawken any aid it may need. He is grateful and impressed to see such a diverse group, but Luke admits Rik's gang are outcasts of their worlds and probably up to no good. Shocked, Kiro runs to stop them. Rik finds a room filled with artwork, but as he tries to loot it, Kiro arrives. He and Chihdo scuffle, triggering closed doors and a ticking noise. Luke offers to transport an ambassador, so Margan and another aide nominate Santor for the job. He offers Plif food, but Plif has feasted on Shawken's abundant energy, and notices Luke's 'saber as the mark of a Jedi, as many great Jedi were born here. A guard reports the actions of Rik's gang, who fail to find a way out. Dani panics, but Kiro assures her Luke will save them. Luke, Santor, and the others arrive at the cave, where Luke disables a defense beam, saving Santor's life. Seeing a panel, Santor realizes what has occurred: in addition to artwork and technology, his ancestors embraced nihilism and built a device to trigger a chain reaction, destroying the entire universe. Plif eats the energy sealing the door and frees Rik's gang, then Luke finds a trap-door and descends to stop the bomb. Feeling guilty, Kiro joins him, and they find a river. Removing his rebreather, Kiro takes the 'saber and jumps in the water, determined not to let Luke risk his life. Using it to light his way, he swims to an underwater chamber and destroys a large wall-hanging, deactivating the machine but starting a tidal wave that nearly kills him. Luke ascends to the surface, carrying his body. The gang thinks him dead and regrets their actions, but Plif senses lifesigns and Luke vows to restore his health.
Review not yet available. Please check back again soon.