answered with shots of her own.

Before Malgus could dispatch the soldiers, the Mandalorian rose from somewhere behind them, her jetpack spitting fire, her head-to-toe silver-and-orange armor gleaming in the fire of the hall. Hovering in the air like an avenging spirit, she discharged two small missiles from wrist mounts. They struck the floor near the Republic soldiers and blossomed into flame. Bodies, shouts, and loose rock flew in all directions. Still hovering, she spun a circle in the air while flamethrowers mounted on her forearm engulfed another group of soldiers.

Malgus knew the battle had turned, that it soon would be over. He glanced around, still seeking Zallow, the only opponent in the field worthy of his attention.

Before he could locate the Jedi Master, three more Jedi swarmed him. He parried the chop of a human male, leapt over the low slash of an orange-skinned Togruta female, severed the hand of the third, a female human, disarming her, then grabbed her by the throat with his free hand and slammed her into the floor with his Force-enhanced strength.

Alara! said the human male.

Leaping high over the males cross-slash, Malgus landed behind the Togruta, who parried his lightsaber strike but could not defend herself against a Force blast that sent her skidding across the hall and into a pile of rubble.

Malgus roared, the lust for battle so pronounced that he would have killed his own warriors were there no Jedi left to slay. He wanted, needed, to kill another and to do so with his hands.

He ducked under a slash from the male, lunged forward, and took the Jedi by the throat. He lifted him from his feet and held him suspended in the air, gagging. The Jedis brown eyes showed no fear, but did show pain. Malgus roared, squeezed hard, then

Supported By US NAVY