Star Wars Newspaper Strip Spotlight – ‘The Constancia Affair,’ Part 5


The panels in this week’s article were published each Sunday from June 17 to July 1, 1979.

The panels in this week’s article were published each Sunday from June 17 to July 1, 1979.

Previously in ‘The Constancia Affair’…

After being deactivated and jettisoned right before the destruction of Luke Skywalker’s Y-Wing, protocol droid C-3PO and astromech R2-D2 are rescued by legendary smuggler Han Solo. Han finds out from C-3PO that Luke was on a secret mission to Constancia for the Rebel Alliance. But before Han can find out what the mission was, an Imperial TIE Bomber patrol spots the Falcon. After losing the TIEs, Han is forced to pilot the Falcon into a mysterious hangar bay inside a meteorite right outside of Constancia. Inside, he meets a white-haired woman named Gamine, who explains that Han is needed to save the Constancian telepaths from becoming slaves of the Empire! Han and Sharlee, another Constancian, jettison in an escape pod equipped with a decoy transmission, which says that a badly injured Luke and Gamine are onboard. After the pod is captured by an Imperial Boarding Craft, Han and Sharlee take over the ship. As we rejoin our heroes for the final part of our tale, the Imperial Fleet Command has just ordered the TIE Patrol escorting the captured pod to destroy the nearby Rebel ship Millennium Falcon, which is trying to get away using the distraction that Han and Sharlee created…

Now, back to our story…

Han orders Sharlee not to turn on the visual monitors of the Boarding Craft, which would give away the fact that it is now commandeered by Rebels. He then activates the ship’s onboard comm system, and identifies himself as the Imperial pilot of Boarding Craft 356. He orders the TIE Fighters to stand down, saying that he is nearest to the enemy target, the Falcon. After Han deliberately misses blasting the Falcon several times, one of the other TIEs steps in, ordering Han to deactivate his “worthless weapon computer, so it won’t lock in on us!” To save the Falcon and his friends onboard, Han blasts the TIE ship, and thinks to himself “there’s nothing wrong with my aim!” Sharlee calls out from the rear gun port of the Boarding Craft that the other TIE ships are getting past them!

Han and Sharlee have done their part of the mission, and now it’s up to Chewie and Luke in the Falcon to take care of the remaining forces. Luke mans Gunport Two and Gamine calls the Constancia Ground Defense, ordering them to only destroy the two TIE Fighters, therefore ensuring Han and Sharlee’s safety. The ground defense blasts one TIE, and Luke destroys the other, freeing both the Millennium Falcon and Constancia from the Empire. “Now,” says Gamine, “comes the hard part – living through a hero’s welcome on my planet!”

As the Falcon, now carrying Han and Sharlee as well as Luke, Gyla, Gamine, Chewbacca, and the droids, approaches the landing pad, Gamine can already sense the joyful emotions of the Constancian welcoming committee! As our heroes, finally safe and sound, arrive at the Constancian capital, Gamine voices her thoughts on the celebration, “You haven’t seen a joyous mob until you’ve been with telepaths pumping up on each other’s good thoughts!”

And so ends the story of The Constancia Affair! Back at the hidden Rebel Base, Threepio finishes telling his tale to Mistress Mnemos, a Rebel archive droid who is cataloguing the adventures of Luke Skywalker and other Rebel heroes. She doesn’t understand why the Constancians would possibly want to celebrate when the Empire is still threatening their world. Threepio explains that they had great faith in Gamine and the Rebel Alliance, and the people of Constancia made a monument to the Rebel heroes! Mistress Mnemos pulls up an image and file of Chewbacca who was born on “Hazhyyyk*” then asks how he and Han Solo meet. Threepio responds that he doesn’t know since he wasn’t there, but that he was there when Han met Gyla Petro which, “Almost cost them their lives.” (*now known as Kashyyyk)!

COMING SOON – The Story of Gyla Petro

Who really is Gyla Petro? What was she doing on Chewie’s homeworld? Where does her allegiance truly lie? What are the traditions of Wookiee Life Day? Find out the answers to these questions and much, much more next week, when we begin a new story: the story of Gyla Petro!

Author Biography

Hi, my name is Jonathan Marroquin. My first memory of Star Wars is seeing a dusty VHS tape in the corner, which my grandpa explained was a sci-fi movie. I fell in love with it immediately. In the next few days, I watched Star Wars: A New Hope more times than I could count. I like to say Star Wars was my first love, and it’s stayed true to me ever since. A LEGO enthusiast and stop-motion animator, I enjoy writing fan fiction in the Star Wars and Harry Potter universes. I also design LEGO starships both Canonical and Legends-inspired in my spare time. May The Force Be With You, Always!

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