Darth Wiki: Star Wars The Last Shadow
: the Last Shadow is a series of fanfic by aurora369, depicting the (mostly) full biography of an original character, the (ex-)Jedi Shadow Rina Ascura. Right now (late 2012) it only exists in the form of hanging plot threads on the author's hard drive.
The planned series consists of:
- The Shadows Trilogy. Set in the Rise of the Empire era, this novel in three parts shows Rina Ascura's birth, apprenticehood and career as the Jedi Order's investigator and hunter of everything Dark Side, and eventual downfall.
- No One Wanted To Die: set before the Clone Wars, this novella shows Rina's apprenticehood to the Jedi Shadow Belg Kiybo, who eventually becomes the leader of the Shadows.
- The Living and the Dead: set during the Clone Wars, this novella shows Rina's Clone Wars record, her ascension as the leader of the Shadows and her ultimate failure to stop Palpatine.
- The Dead Never Break a Sweat: the Imperial period begins, and Ascura submerges into the Dark Side of the Force, desiring revenge for the fallen Jedi and swearing relentless guerrilla warfare against the Sith. She becomes a Confederate Remnant warlord and finally loses her battle to young Admiral Thrawn. She vanishes into obscurity, having completely lost her hope, sanity and desire to carry on.
- Old Shadows Never Die: the sequel, set during the New Republic era. Mara Jade finds Ascura as a crazy homeless person working for food for a smuggler bigwig, recognizes her as the former Empire's Most Wanted #3 and takes her to Yavin IV, where Luke heals her, restores her sanity and faith. Ascura helps Luke fend off an attack on Yavin IV initiated by a renegade, even-more-militant remnant of her own old organization, and tries to settle in the New Jedi Order as a librarian and a temple caretaker (and still a part-time Shadow). However, a close brush with a Sorcerer of Rhand breaks her newfound faith, and Ascura resigns to a life of an anchorite Gray Jedi on the distant planet of Iego.
- Undying Enmity: the second sequel, set during the Second Galactic Civil War and featuring a Changing of the Guard: Rina takes a passive, mentorly role. The new protagonist is Aya Aroona, a Twi'lek Jedi of the fully reformed Shadows, daughter of Rina's apprentice Deel (who now leads the Shadows and takes on a role very similar to Ano "Agaric" Werdo, the first head of the Shadows in No One Wanted To Die). The story itself is suspiciously similar to the Shadows Trilogy, but Aya has something Rina didn't have: an older, independent mentor who had seen it all... and detects a familiar hand in the unfolding events. Yes, the Rhandite is up to his usual business again, but this time he has a knowing enemy.
- Star Wars: Dynasties: the final entry, set in the Legacy era, and a sequel to the Ostrander&Duursema Legacy comics. Cade Skywalker decides he will become a Gray Jedi, and finds a mentor on the distant planet Iego. Yes, that mentor. Cade, Jariah, Deliah Blue and Rina Ascura set off to unravel the next Sith plot and deal once and for all with the Bigger Bad Sorcerer of Rhand, Archpriest Ironstar.
This ever-unfinished work contains examples of:
- Anyone Can Die: and they die. A lot.
- Back from the Brink: Rina Ascura tries to do so with the Confederacy of Independent Systems, and fails. I'Mechra Tann, however, specializes in this, she resurrects both the Confederacy and the Burning Hand.
- Big Bad: Archpriest Ironstar, Sorcerer of Rhand and Rina's archnemesis.
- Bigger Bad: for the entirety of the Shadows Trilogy, Ironstar is a passive watcher not unlike G-Man, but it is implied that he helps Palpatine estabilish the Empire with his Reality Warper powers.
- Black Humor: the preeminent form of humor in this series.
- Coat Cape: Ascura's trademark. First she starts to wear her Jedi robe this way. Then she makes herself a Custom Uniform when serving as a general of the Clone Field Military Police during the Clone Wars, patterned after the Corellian police uniform, and wears it this way. Then, after becoming Marshal Ascura, she gets a full-on Bling of War suit based on a historical Corellian uniform one of her ancestors wore, complete with a greatcoat, and wears the coat this way, ending up as a Balalaika lookalike.
- Combat Pragmatist: Rina, being a master of Trakata. Darth Vindica, in the more traditional "dirty tricks up her sleeve" way.
- Darker and Edgier: than many official Star Wars Expanded Universe works.
- Eldritch Abomination: Mnggal-Mnggal makes an appearance in Dynasties.
- Evil Versus Evil: the Ascurite Order vs the Sith.
- Evil Versus Oblivion: Darth Regnus against Mnggal-Mnggal in Dynasties, as arranged by Ironstar.
- Foregone Conclusion: The series is notable for not violating Star Wars canon anywhere; it adds, but not rewrites. So everything you know about the setting's history is set in stone, and Rina cannot stop it.
- He Who Fights Monsters: that's exactly why the Jedi abstain from revenge. Rina doesn't.
- Humanoid Abomination: Ironstar.
- Face Heel Revolving Door: Rina, full stop. She zig-zags from a Sociopathic Hero to a full Villain Protagonist and back. None of her attempts to be genuinely nice last long enough.
- Immortality Inducer: the planet Iego, by virtue of which Rina survived well into the Legacy era.
- In the Blood: the running theme of Dynasties, centering on the further fate of Skywalkers, Solos and Fels. Darth Vindica, an evil descendant of the same bloodline as Scout from Yoda: Dark Rendezvous is no slouch, either.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: "You desire destruction? Well, I'll gladly oblige!" - Darth Regnus to the Sorcerers of Rhand in Dynasties, before blasting their planet into oblivion with interstellar ICBM's.
- Kill It with Fire: the Ascurites' fire orange bladed lightsabers are meant to evoke this symbolism.
- A Lighter Shade of Black: The Ascurite Order, than the Empire. The Empire and the Sith, than the Rhandites.
- Meaningful Name: Ascura is derived from the Latin obscura, meaning both dark and obscure, referencing both her grim fate and her exploits being unknown and forgotten. Also, look up in Wikipedia what an iron star is.
- Mecha-Mooks: Ascura's army in The Dead Never Break A Sweat is The Remnant of the Confederate army, so it's a natural.
- M.I.B.: the Jedi Shadows. Ascura starts as one of them.
- Moral Event Horizon: Gree Kulgorik, the first Marshal of the Burning Hand and Rina's self-styled successor, researches Mnggal-Mnggal with the intent of dropping pieces of this Eldritch Abomination on Coruscant, to kill the Sith with the resulting Zombie Apocalypse. This will inevitably result in Mnggal-Mnggal gaining a foothold in the Core Worlds, which is basically the beginning of an End of the World as We Know It. Rina herself, though, stays clear of the horizon and opens up a can of wup ass on Gree, which results in the much more sensible Kuth Agar replacing Gree.
- Morale Event Horizon: Rina passes through several nested horizons during the Imperial era. In fact, it's her experiences that allow her to laugh off a Rhandite's Mind Rape with a simple "Been there, done that, and all I got was that lousy T-shirt".
- Nice Hat: Ascura's Commissar Cap is based on the CorSec hats from Star Wars: Revelations.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: that's how the Ascurite Order works.
- Reality Warper: Ironstar is a Rhandite, and this power is part and parcel of their abilities.
- Renegade Splinter Faction: Nested like a Matryoshka doll! The Ascurite Order is this to the Jedi Order. The Burning Hand is this to the Ascurite Order, which itself seems too warm and fuzzy to the more obsessed Ascurites.
- Revenge Before Reason: the Ascurite Order, even more so its splinter sect, the Burning Hand. The latter turns hostile against Luke Skywalker, because ARRGH HE STOLE OUR REVENGE!!! (they don't know the real story and think Luke killed Vader and Palpatine).
- Sociopathic Hero: Master Belg Kiybo. Rina herself becomes one after her first Morale Event Horizon.
- Theme Naming: every title in the series has the word "die", "dead" or "death" somewhere in the title. Except Dynasties, which can still be punned as "Die, nasties".
- Thirty Xanatos Pileup : Dynasties. It has Ironstar, Darth Nihl, who wants to restore the Rule of Two, and Darth Regnus, who has his own plans for the Sith Order's future.
- Then Let Me Be Evil: Ascura does this when she snaps after Order 66.
- Token Good Teammate: Rina's apprentice, the purple Twi'lek Deel Aroona in The Dead Never Break A Sweat. The only genuinely nice Ascurite.