Hello. Back again with another random PT idea… Well, this is kinda PT idea one. Earlier this year, I had a thought of “what if a prequel was to be made using only SW77?” and that included ideas like Vader and Anakin being two separate people, Luke and Leia are NOT siblings, there is no Yoda, Luke hasn’t lost his hand, Han had money to pay off Jabba, the Force is more low-key in comparison to its depictions in later works (less gigantic, flashy powers-and more subtle), there are no Sith (at least not like the PT or EU), etc.
Anyway, this was a story idea would follow Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker through the final years of the Clone Wars. The threat is the Mandalorians, who are just a race of warring nomads that lost their homeworld centuries ago and travel in a flotilla of ships (think of the Quarians from Mass Effect, only more Spartan-esque). Among their leaders would be a female commander named Avarein who serves as the Vader of this story. She is secretly in cahoots with the man who would become “emperor,” as she wishes to overthrow the Mandalorians’ current leader and completely destroy the Jedi who stand in the way of the Mandalorians ruling the galaxy.
Admittedly, this story is a very weeeeeird look at how a prequel could’ve been done with just SW77. If anything, I’d expect this story to catch someone’s attention for just how different it is from the actual movies.
With that out of the way, let’s begin.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…
KNIGHT OF THE REPUBLIC
Chaos. With their armies of clones, the vicious MANDALORIAN ARMADA sweeps across the galaxy to bring destruction to many worlds. Thousands of Republic citizens run and hide form them, seeking refuge under President Organa.
The only ones fighting this enemy are the brave Jedi Knights, leaving their base to help defend the Republic against this threat. With the help of the Republic’s defenders, the Mandalorians have been pushed back.
Among the many Jedi, General OBI-WAN KENOBI and his pupils lead his forces. They fight in the skies of a strange world, against the great threat to the Republic…
We’d begin over a planet (let’s go with Skye from the SW Marvel comics for now). General Obi-Wan Kenobi and his pupil Darth Vader are barely able to get through the line of clone soldiers bred by the Mandalorian Armada. That is when Anakin Skywalker comes swooping in with a fighter similar to the TIE Fighters. With Anakin’s help, the Republic forces are able to overwhelm the Mandalorians who were trying to strip mine the planet for its resources.
It’s here that we see the clear difference of the Jedi. Unlike their PT counterparts, the Jedi don’t wear robes. The standard uniform is a black garb with some white bits of a pilot suit on top (think of a black and white version of the rebel flightsuit from SW77). Obi-Wan himself wears a cloak over his uniform. This is a far cry from the technological Republic, with President Organa (dressed in fine clothing and robes) praising the general for his efforts in the war via a comm/screen.
With our heroes victorious, they head back to the Jedi homeworld of Transar, which they have used for 1000 generations to train Jedi. Though there is nothing on the surface, Transar’s subterranean tunnels are filled with crystals that the Jedi harvest for their lightsaber. In the tunnels, members of the Jedi Knights are dwindling and the few remaining members praise Obi-Wan and his students for all their successful battles, Anakin receiving more than Vader. While Vader is jealous, he puts it aside thanks to the affection of his fiance, a young woman who is a pilot and is great friends with Anakin (can’t really think of a name now, but I don’t think Padme would be a good name for her).
This is where we go to the Mandalorian fleet. In this version, the Mandalorians are a race of warring nomads that lost their homeworld centuries ago and travel in a flotilla of ships (think of the Quarians from Mass Effect, only more Spartan-esque). Among their leaders would be a female commander named Avarein who serves as the Vader of this story, as she was head of the Mandalorian force that Kenobi and his pupils just defeated. When berated by the other leaders of the Mandalorian Armada, Avarein merely states it was to test Kenobi’s forces, since they had beaten many Mandalorian commanders in the past. Avarein then secretly meets with Palpatine to discuss how to defeat the Jedi, believing them to be the only thing in the way of the war (something which the other Mandalorian leaders don’t seem to fully grasp).
Back on Transar, Obi-Wan secretly talks with the ancient Jedi Masters to test Anakin and see if he can become a Jedi Knight, since Anakin is a more experienced student and has won many battles. Thus, Anakin is summoned to a secret portion of the caverns. There, Anakin comes face-to-face with a gigantic crystal that he has never seen before but he has heard of. To many outsiders, it is called “the Jedi Crystal,” the supposed heart of all crystals on Transar. Flanking the crystal are two cloaked figures, the Jedi Masters themselves who guard the crystal and commune with it from time to time. One master, the tall and hooded Mace, tells Anakin to touch the crystal. Immediately, Anakin sees flashes of a planet being destroyed, bodies of Jedi lying everyone, and a figure standing over them with his face (hinting at what we’re familiar with from the actual PT). Anakin pulls back, frightened, and when he asks what he saw, the other Jedi master, the short and elfish Minch, replies Anakin had seen a potential future and not to tell anyone of what he had seen, even to his teacher. Anakin agrees, albeit hesitantly, and returns back to everyone.
Vader notices Anakin’s return, has his suspicions especially after hearing of Anakin being a Jedi while he is just a pupil, and demands Master Mace of what happened. Mace reprimands the younger Jedi, who apologizes to the Jedi Master who is also his father. Here we see that Vader comes from a long line of Jedi and he wishes to live up to that line but feels that Anakin is outshining him at every turn. Before Vader can object, Obi-Wan steps in and has Vader come with him for a new mission. Said mission is to a Republic world under Palpatine and ensure that it doesn’t fall into enemy hands. This leads to a web of lies as Palpatine talks to Vader about the Jedi training and wondering if he knows of “any alternatives.” Vader let’s slip about the Jedi Crystal, and Palpatine entices Vader with the idea of using the crystal for himself (in an attempt for Palpatine to have the crystal himself).
On Transar, Anakin is trying to be by himself and contemplate his vision when Vader’s fiance goes to him and ask him what is wrong. Anakin says it’s nothing and tries to shake it off with a race using their starfighters. After a fun race, the two talk about their lives before they got involved in the war, Vader’s fiance saying she was drafted and made to survey instead of actually fight (something that Vader thinks she should stick to doing). Anakin encourages her to dream as he himself recalls his time on Tatooine when he stayed with Owen and Beru, including a time before he met Obi-Wan when a strange woman came to his door and told him all the wonders of the galaxy beyond Tatooine.
Back to Avarein, she prepares to attack Palpatine’s homeworld with a strike force and bury Obi-Wan and his pupil. It succeeds, injuring Vader enough that he requires implants to help him. Anakin and Vader’s fiance rushes over, finding Vader very embittered and barely holding on (emotionally speaking) to the point that he lashes his anger out at his fiance. Palpatine, recognizing this, approaches Anakin to praise him of his deeds in battle and of attracting the right attention. When Palpatine hints at a possible attraction to Vader’s fiance, Anakin denies it but he inwardly admits there might be something after he tries to comfort Vader’s fiance, distraught to find Vader so angry and frightening (which is something she had noticed beforehand and feared would happen again).
After hearing what happened, Anakin stomps over to Vader, demanding him to apologize. Vader refuses and constantly taunts Anakin, saying “how you think you’re better than me?”, “you have no right to even touch [insert fiance name],” “she’s mine, not yours,” etc. An angered Anakin punches Vader and he would’ve continued his assault if not remembering his vision. Vader takes advantage of that and uses his anger on Anakin, forcing the Jedi Knight on his knees. However, Vader stops when he realizes his fiance and Obi-Wan were watching the whole thing. Vader is made even angrier when his fiance goes to help Anakin, and things are made worse when Vader is visited by his father, Mace who berates him to falling into anger. Vader scoffs at the idea, saying that his father never really appreciated him and always saying no to everything, even to his betrothal. Mace silently departs, leaving Vader to be disciplined by Obi-Wan.
Everything is cut short by another attack from the Mandalorians. Like the hero he is, Anakin goes up to face the Mandalorians and neutralizes them with help from the Republic troops there as well as Vader’s fiance (whom Anakin has been encouraging to fly with him). Through the battle, Anakin enters the bridge and comes across Avarein who is armored and masked. Avarain stops to note Anakin’s appearance, musing with interest that “the boy from Tatooine has grown up.” Anakin attacks but realizes he’s only seeing Avarein’s hologram and the whole thing was a set up to draw the best of the Jedi away.
At the same time, Avarein raids Transar. The entire underground network of caves and tunnels have been flushed out by Mandalorian troops who shoot and kill any Jedi Knight in the area (and there weren’t many due to the war killing so many). Avarein’s troops approach the Jedi Crystal and are hold back by the Jedi Master Minch, who uses create illusions with the Force to distract the troopers. It is not enough as Avarein steps in and strikes a mortal blow to the Jedi Master using a blade made from the very crystals of fallen Jedi. With all opposition out of the way, Avarein takes the Jedi Crystal back to the Mandalorian Armada.
Knowing what has happened, our heroes prepare for the final battle. An unsure Anakin talks to Obi-Wan, who tells him that “things beyond your power cannot be changed but only you can change yourself” (or something along those lines). With that, Anakin goes to Vader’s fiance who has completely split from Vader, and the two confess their feelings to one another and kiss with Vader watching angrily in the background before he leaves (possibly before anything more happens-I dunno, I’m not sure how to feel about moving forward with this). With ships from President Organa and any remaining Jedi involved (including Mace), Obi-Wan commands the attack on the Mandalorian Armada, with Anakin spearheading the fighters and attack ships.
Though the battle goes well at first, it all goes downhill when the Mandalorians unleash a gigantic (pre-Death Star) laser on the Republic fleet. Many ships are destroyed, and any surviving Jedi can sense the giant Jedi crystal from Transar is being used to power the laser. After Anakin and his fighters draw enough enemy fire away, a small strike team made up of Vader, Mace, and other Jedi sneak aboard the main flagship, where the laser is being kept. The other Jedi are picked off one by one by the ship’s defenses and huge numbers of Mandalorians. All that remains is Vader and his father Mace, who finds Avarein as an obstacle to freeing the Jedi Crystal. Though Mace is powerful with the Force, a slight disruption from a cracked Jedi Crystal (turning from its white color to bloodied red) distracts him enough for Avarein to slay him. Vader is left alone and barely manages hold back Avarein, even with his anger powering him. Anakin, sensing Vader’s struggle, comes to his old friend’s rescue by shooting his way into the flagship and ejecting from his fighter before it crashes.
From there, the final duel happens. Anakin faces off against Avarein. Things are made difficult with Vader consumed by his anger and hatred, slashing at both the Mandalorian commander and his fellow Jedi. Ultimately, Anakin falls into the Force and concentrates, and he is able to disrupt the Jedi Crystal and distract Avarein (just as it did with Mace). With pieces of the Jedi Crystal flying everywhere, Anakin slices at Avarein, unveiling her to be the very woman whom Anakin met all those years ago on Tatooine. A dying Avarein admits defeat and says that there is no escape for any of them, since the Jedi crystal is causing an overflow of power. Anakin manages to put the ship on auto-pilot, but not before a bitter Vader takes of a tiny fragment of the Jedi crystal and leaves Anakin to die. Fortunately, Anakin manages to shoots the rest of the crystal into space and jumps away in time for the exploding crystal to destroy the Mandalorian Armada, keeping it out of the hands of anyone.
With Vader missing, Anakin reunites with Obi-Wan and Vader’s fiance, the former stating that the war is over but everything has gone downhill after it has been revealed that President Organa was forced to resign and Palpatine takes over his position. Anakin states that they all have to hold on to hope, and the trio prepares for the rise of what would be the Empire. Anakin stays with Vader’s now ex-fiance (who hints at being pregnant) for a bit before he departs, but not before leaving his saber behind to find other surviving Jedi.
The epilogue of the story shows Anakin (possibly months later) on another planet. He can’t find any surviving Jedi but immediately finds a cloaked figure. That figure is in mechanical breathing apparatus and unveils a red lightsaber (which is powered by the tiny fragment of the Jedi Crystal). Anakin recognizes the figure as Vader, who demands him to surrender in the name of the ‘emperor.’ Seeing no other choice, Anakin accepts his fate and faces off Vader in one-last duel.
And that’s the “Knight of the Republic.” Again, I do think this story is way out there and silly but that is kinda the intent since it is trying to be closer to the original SW77 aesthetic and feel. It certainly ain’t perfect (especially since bits of what I just wrote was more on the fly) and I doubt I’d ever try to write it as an actual story though.