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Marvel Star Wars #38
Published: August 1980

Aboard a Spice Tanker, Luke and Leia are shot at by a Star Destroyer and two TIEs after buying medical supplies from smugglers along Outworld trade routes. A shot pierces their shielding as they jump to hyperspace, making the hyperdrive propel them too fast, too far, to the starless void between galaxies. Unable to make repairs, they notice a light in space which becomes a green, glowing, blob-like ship. Laughter comes over the speakers and the ship "swallows" them. They see organic machines inside and their every word produces unseen laughter. Sucked into the floor and separated, Luke plummets free-fall onto a pile of cushions as Leia rolls down a slide and is attacked by huge worms. Stunned, Luke rises when a fighting droid duplicates his saber and attacks while babbling as if this were a game. Adjusting to his moves, the droid decides Luke is "no fun at all" and ends the game. When he kills the droid, the ship cries in fear, for only a living being could defeat it. Xenophobic, the ship thinks them enemies and opens itself to the vacuum of space. Blown toward the vacuum, Luke grabs a column and catches Leia's hand as she flies by. The wind is strong and Leia's weight almost pulls him out. She begs him to let her go, and though he says he loves her and holds tight, she eventually slips free. Suddenly, the hole closes and they fall to the floor, spared because they care for each other and have reminded the ship how to care. A hole opens in the wall, leading them to a mechanical being attached to circuitry before a large viewsccreen, who says his race were many in number until war killed all ships but his; in victory, they learned of a plague bomb set by an enemy, which ate through their armor and killed the others. He fled the galaxy to avoid spreading the plague further; in time, he, the ship, and the computer fused to form a living ship, a "Rider in the Void." The ship jumps back to their galaxy, wondering if this is all a game created by the computer for amusement, until the Star Destroyer opens fire, thinking the ship a Rebel trap. Feeling pain, the Rider is convinced of the reality of the Imperials and releases antimatter pods to destroy them, then says their ship is repaired and allows them to depart. Luke asks the Rider to stay, but this galaxy is too real for it, so it returns to the Void, laughing and wishing them happiness. EnsViews Comic Review

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"EnsViews" are copyright ? 1997-8 by Paul Ens. They are posted to rec.arts.sf.starwars.misc, emailed to Dark Horse Comics and archived on theForce.net. Cover scans are courtesy of Mark Lookabaugh.

Titles, Cover images, Marvel Comics, and the Marvel logo are trademarks of Marvel Comic Group and its respective Licensors.

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