In this pivotal prequel to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the heroes of the Resistance—Poe Dameron, General Leia Organa, Rey, and Finn—must fight back from the edge of oblivion.
The Resistance is in ruins. In the wake of their harrowing escape from Crait, what was once an army has been reduced to a handful of wounded heroes. Finn, Poe, Rey, Rose, Chewbacca, Leia Organa—their names are famous among the oppressed worlds they fight to liberate. But names can only get you so far, and Leia’s last desperate call for aid has gone unanswered.
From the jungles of Ryloth to the shipyards of Corellia, the shadow of the First Order looms large, and those with the bravery to face the darkness are scattered and isolated. If hope is to survive, the Resistance must journey throughout the galaxy, seeking out more leaders—including those who, in days gone by, helped a nascent rebellion topple an empire. Battles will be fought, alliances will be forged, and the Resistance will be reborn.
USA TODAY has an exclusive excerpt from "Resistance Reborn," featuring a pivotal scene that tests loyalties and leadership.
USA TODAY EXCERPT:
Poe arrived at the fight just as one of the pilots Wedge had brought in from Phantom Squadron went sliding across the floor, his feet skidding out from under him in a streak of blood.
“What in the hell?” Poe murmured, taking in the scene. To his left was the ex-Imperial, Teza Nasz. She was breathing hard, her chest rising and falling rapidly. She had a cut above one of her eyes that bled freely, streaking the ocher on her cheeks and dripping on the floor like rubies against the black stone. The woman surged forward, a pillar of muscle, but Jess Pava hurried to stop her. She wrapped a hand around the woman’s arm, pulling her back, pleading in words that Poe couldn’t hear this far away.
To his right, Wedge and another man were helping the Phantom Squadron pilot Poe didn’t know up from the floor over his protests that he was fine and didn’t need their help.
The gathered assembly had created a loose circle around the two combatants, clearly ready to cheer on the fight. Poe looked at their faces. They were a fair mix of rebel veterans - graybeards left over from the war with the Empire - and fresh faces that looked like they couldn’t be long out of flight school, if they ever attended flight school at all. The absurdity of it all flashed through his mind. The old and the young, both caught up in this war, both fighting for the same things, yet somehow fighting each other. Might as well punch yourself in the face, he thought. That last thought stopped him in his tracks. Is that what Maz had been trying to tell him? That he was fighting himself?
“Poe Dameron,” a familiar voice called. Poe shook the unsettling thought from his mind and looked over to see his old flight instructor, Wedge Antilles.
“Antilles,” he said, voice threaded with anger. “What in the hell is going on?”
“Agoyo swung first,” Norra Wexley offered. She was standing beside Wedge, clearly evaluating the ex-Imperial with something that looked like appreciation.
“I’m not sure I care,” Poe said, somewhere between disgusted and tired. “We’re all on the same side here. What is this about?” He waved his hand in the general direction of the circle of bystanders.
“You should care!” shouted the young pilot Norra had named as Agoyo. He was back on his feet, but the uniform he wore was streaked with blood that wasn’t his. That uniform wasn’t his, either. Or at least it had belonged to someone else before Agoyo claimed it. For one, it was at least a size too big, but the giveaway was the Phantom Squadron patch. This kid was way too young to have been part of Phantom Squadron.
Poe raised an eyebrow. “Identify yourself, pilot.” He hated to call the young man out, but he also knew that he needed to put an end to whatever this was right now, before grudges formed and things got even more complicated.
Agoyo tossed his black hair out of his eyes defiantly. He crossed thin arms over a square chest, and his expressive mouth twisted now in something close to contempt. Poe shook his head. Agoyo was this close to insubordination.
“Name, pilot,” he repeated crisply.
“Pacer,” the kid practically spit. “Pacer Agoyo.”
“Pacer.” Poe gave him a nod of acknowledgment. “You know who I am?”
Pacer nodded. “Poe Dameron.”
“No. I’m your commanding officer,” Poe corrected him. “And frankly, right now I’m not impressed with what I see. I understand you’ve come a long way to join us . . .” He left the statement open until Pacer offered: “Nuja. My dad flew with Phantom Squadron at Kashyyyk but he’s dead. So I came instead.”
That explained the uniform. “I appreciate your father’s service, and your willingness to join the Resistance, but unfortunately, it looks like you’re not a good fit for this mission. You’re free to leave.” Poe very purposefully turned his back on the pilot. Small gasps of shock echoed around him, and then silence. He caught Leia’s eye. She was standing back at the edge of the crowd, watching.
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