I did it! I finally made my way back to my chronological path!My move from one school to another was more discombobulating than I thought, and I lament how far behind I fell in my personal Star Wars quest. I hope I stay at this new school I’m at for a while, but with enrollment rates dropping where I live, it’s possible I may be sent to yet another school in September. Hopefully with some retirements at the end of this semester, I’ll work my way up the seniority tree which means I’ll be able to stay put.
But enough of my personal life, let’s get to my reactions to Deal with a Demon, a fabulous little story from John Ostrander.It seems that Vilmarh Grahrk survived his meeting with Darth Sidious at the end of Jedi Council: Acts of War. Having partially failed the Dark Lord of the Sith in his task of inciting the Yinchorri into a war with the Jedi to Sidious’ satisfaction, “Villie”, as he calls himself, was summoned to the Sith Lord’s presence, his fate unknown to us. In Deal with a Demon, we have the re-appearance of Mr. Grahrk into the cosmos of Star Wars.
This character is awesome. He’s such a sly villain I find it impossible not to like him. What I find particularly entertaining about him is his accent.“Let me see if I’m understanding you correctly, Hokay?”
Villie says this to Naradan D’ulin (his employer for this job) at the beginning of the story, the Devorian scoundrel seeking clarification for his smuggling assignment. I imagine his “hokay” being pronounced with a rough and throaty breathing on the ‘H’. He reminds me of some Middle-Eastern trader constantly on the prowl for a good swindle.After reading this story I get the impression Ostrander likes this character he’s created as well, otherwise he wouldn’t have written this little narrative with Villie as the hero. I’d love to say that Vilmarh Grahrk is a ‘rouge with a heart of gold’, but that would be too kind. Plus, I like him this way. He’s a character that keeps the reader on his toes.
His job in this story is to smuggle a princess off planet, a little Ootoolan girl protected by Naradan D’ulin, a Mistryl Shadow Guard. In typical Devorian fashion, Vilmarh already sold his services to the highest bidder – the Revolutionary Purists Council – the Theocratic government looking to ends the princess’ life. Once he had the princess in his care he immediately turned her over to the guards. The Revolutionary Purists Council had already killed her father, the King of Ootoolan, for being impure, their goal to rid the planet of the former king’s bloodline.Villie’s double-cross takes the reader a little by surprise, but as we continue with the story we learn his manoeuver was all in the princess’ favour, as it was always his intention to break the princess and her protector out of jail when the Revolutionary Purists Council’s attention was elsewhere.
“Was good plan! Before everybody look for princess! No escape! Now nobody look for princess! Escape easy!”After Villie’s double-cross D’ulin is rightly suspicious of the scoundrel, and asks Villie why she should trust him. In my favorite line in the story, Villie replies:
“Such terrible dilemma! What to do? Stay and die? Go and live? Such a tough decision!”As I already mentioned, Vilmarh Grahrk is the hero of this story (this time), and safely delivers the princess to those looking to protect her life.
Vilmarh Grahrk is such a card. I can’t wait to come across his scoundrel’s ways again.It’s good to be back on my chronological path once again. For my next post I’m going to look at Star Wars Junior: Droid Everywhere! Until then my friends, may the Force be with you.