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Prologue

Asharath, 21 BBY

It wasn't supposed to be like this.

They had received a distress signal from Asharath's surface, asking for supplies due to an intense shortage of nutrition. When the Phoenix entered the planet's orbit, the Separatist fleet caught them by surprise. Admiral Darren Nivix cursed at himself for not foreseeing this ambush. As the man single-handedly responsible for the lives of the soldiers on-board the flagship, this was all his fault. It was his responsibility to predict any - no, every possible scenario that could occur at any moment. And Nivix had failed, as now the Separatists surrounded the cruiser, preparing to board.

But any further angst would have to wait, as Nivix prepared to lead his men personally and defend the Phoenix. Exiting the bridge, Nivix ran to the hanger, accompanied by the soldiers he had fought with every day. Despite the fact that they were all clones, Nivix saw each of them as individuals, and was glad that, if he was going to die today, it would be among these men.

There wasn't any time to react when the Separatists began to board the hanger and started firing. Everyone just needed to grab a blaster and fire at everything that looked like a threat. Nivix had never been any good with a blaster, but right now it was the only thing keeping him alive. "Admiral, the Separatists are approaching the engine chambers!", shouted Commodore Frost across the comms. If the Separatists gained control to the engines, everyone on the cruiser would die. Nivix knew that the Phoenix was a goner anyway, but his priority was losing the battle with minimum casualties.

Nivix tried his best to respond to Frost while trying to protect himself from incoming blaster fire, hiding behind some crates. "Commodore, I'm ordering an evacuation, effective immediately! Have every soldier get to the escape pods, and head down to Asharath's surface! Do you understand?"

"Yes Sir!" replied Frost. The evacuation alarms were soon ringing in Nivix's ears. He saw the soldiers slowly head out of the hanger, towards the escape pods. Nivix needed to go the other way, towards the engine chambers. He was going to blow the ship himself as soon as the escape pods were all launched, taking out all the Separatist droids on board, and a large chunk of their fleet.

Reaching the engine chambers, Nivix managed to take out a few commando droids before being knocked in the head from behind. Dropping his blaster, Nivix turned around, trying to regain his balance, to see one of the commandos getting ready to eliminate the Admiral. Nivix lunged towards the commando droid, and used it as a shield from the blaster fire coming from the remaining commando droid. Running towards the sniping droid with the shield, Nivix managed to use his "shield" to crush the last droid into the wall.

With little time left before Separatist reinforcements arrived, Nivix entered the engine navicomputer and prepared for self-detention. Entering the access codes, Nivix prepared to-

He froze.

This was really it. The end of Darren's story. But had he truly accomplished anything? He couldn't think of a time where he was truly proud of himself. Until now.

Nivix activated the self-detention codes. It was time to do something noteworthy for a change. Even if it did mean dying. Because this, this was worth it.

It was worth it.

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