the capture and razing of Coruscant, the fall of the Republic was a certainty, only a matter of time. Soon his Force vision would be realized, then what?

He would have to trust that the Force would present him with another foe, another war worth fighting.

Scaling a mound of rubble, he found a perch that offered an excellent view of the surrounding urbanscape. The cracked face of the statue of Odan-Urr lay atop the mound beside him, eyeing him mournfully.

There, astride the ruins of his enemy, Malgus waited for the Imperial fleet to begin the incineration of the planet.

An hour passed by, then another, and as twilight gave way to night the number of Imperial ships prowling the sky over Coruscant began to thin rather than thicken. Bombers returned to their cruisers, and fighters took up not attack but patrol formations.

What was happening? The Imperial fleet did not have the resources to manage a long-term occupation of Coruscant. Imperial forces had to raze the planet and move on before Republic forces could gather for a counterattack.

And yet nothing was happening. Malgus did not understand.

He activated his comlink and raised his cruiser, Valor.

Darth Malgus, said his second in command, Commander Jard. We have been unable to raise you for hours. I was concerned for your well-being. I just dispatched a transport to search for you at the Temple.

What is happening, Jard? Where are the bombers? When will the planetary bombardment begin?

Jard stumbled over his reply. My lord I Darth Angral

Malguss hand squeezed the comlink as he surmised the meaning behind Jards stuttering response. Speak clearly, Commander.

It seems the peace negotiations are continuing on Alderaan, my lord. Darth Angral has instructed all forces to

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