- Jason Dietzel
Force Organizations: Legions of Lettow
By: Jason Deitzel
The Legions of Lettow got its start in the early millennia of the Jedi Order, circa 24,500 BBY. Its founder, Xendor, originated from the ancient Kashi Mer Dynasty after he was exiled by the priesthood of their Force organization for displaying an interest in following Bogan, the early name for the dark side of the Force.
Xendor’s exile led him to Ossus and the Jedi Order, where he trained and became a well-respected Jedi Knight. However, Xendor’s embrace for the dark side still remained and he soon found himself bored with the Jedi’s narrow study of the Force. Xendor found solace in a fellow student, Arden Lyn, whom shared his philosophy and interest in the dark side and the two quickly became lovers.
Eventually Xendor could bear the Jedi Order’s selective teachings on the Force no longer and became frustrated, approaching the Jedi High Council in hopes of gaining approval to start a new Jedi academy. At this academy, Xendor hoped to not only teach philosophies pertaining to Ashla – the light side of the Force – but also to teach the darker aspects, Bogan.
Seeing the study of the dark side as a grave threat, the Jedi High Council refused his request. But, Xendor would not take “no” as an answer and defied the Jedi, breaking with the order and starting his new academy anyway. Xendor, his partner Arden Lyn, and a handful of acolytes left Ossus and traveled to the planet Lettow. There, they set up their academy.
Focusing on the dark side of the Force, as well as other contemporary Force traditions like the Order of Dai Bendu, Chatos Academy, Followers of Palawa, Baran Do, and the Kashi Mer’s Guardians of the Breath, Xendor’s academy soon found itself with an in-pouring of acolytes eager to learn; thus the Legions of Lettow were born.
The Legion adopted the Jedi’s ritual around the crafting of Force-imbued swords (as this was before the invention of the lightsaber), as well as focused on dual-bladed combat known as Jar’Kai, naming their variation of the fighting style Niman after the triumvirate Kashi Mer deity. (The Jedi would later name the sixth lightsaber form of combat Niman.)
Angered that the Xendor created such a large divide in the order, the Jedi launched an assault against Xendor’s organization, starting a conflict initially named The Great Schism by Jedi historians. Xendor hoped to draw the conflict toward the Core so that the Republic and rest of the galaxy could bear witness to the Jedi’s aggression. Unfortunately for Xendor, his plan backfired, and the Republic instead sided with their Jedi allies.
Deemed a warlord, the Republic/Jedi forces under the command of Jedi Grand Master Awdrysta Pina cornered Xendor and his forces to Columus. Pina, nicknamed the Green Blade, separated Xendor and his elite vanguard from the rest of his forces, where Pina and his entourage of Jedi Knights eliminated Legionnaires Sethul Asaiage and Tun Bohoi before the Green Blade was able to cut down Xendor.
With Xendor dead, his lover Arden Lyn assumed control of the remaining forces on Lettow. Her reign didn’t last long as the Jedi sacked the academy on Lettow. Lyn led a diversion so many in the Legion could escape, drawing Grand Master Lyn to the planet Irkalla. Lyn was able to shatter Pina’s green blade, mortally wounding him, but before his death, he was able to use a technique known as Morichro, slowing Lyn’s biological functions.
Assumed dead, Lyn was preserved in deep stasis, where she’d remain for twenty-four millennia. The rest of the Legions of Lettow were either eliminated or fled into hiding, never to return. Grand Master Pina was immortalized by the Jedi Order for his sacrifice in stopping Xendor and his nefarious teachings.
The Legions of Lettow were mainly mentioned in codex entries from The Old Republic MMO and various Star Wars sourcebooks like The New Essential Chronology, The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, The Essential Atlas and the Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side. However, the name of the organization, Lettow, was originally George Lucas’ name for the Sith Order in his preliminary script for Episode IV: A New Hope, then titled The Star Wars.