The Battle of Zaloriis was a skirmish between Imperial forces and survivors of the Jedi Order in 19 BBY, shortly after the dissolution of the Galactic Republic and the subsequent foundation of the Galactic Empire.
Following the execution of Order 66, a number of Jedi gathered in a desert cave on the planet Zaloriis. They had been invited there by Jedi Knight Nillanthir Zerati to discuss their future and that of the Jedi Order. However, unbeknownst to them, Aoshi, a former friend of Zerati’s and now an Imperial commander, had tracked them to the cave. He had brought along a contingent of clone troopers with the intention of eliminating the Jedi and was approaching fast, bringing an abrupt end to the gathering.
Skirmish At the Cave
Sensing the commander’s presence, Nillanthir instructed the other Jedi to leave, not wanting them to risk their lives and the future of the Jedi Order. As he knew Aoshi and the threat he posed better than anyone, he would stand the best chance of dealing with him. The others reluctantly agreed, but realizing the Imperials would be all over Nillanthir soon, Jedi Knights Vhiran Ashukahwa and Bultar Swan decided to aid their friend. They attacked the stormtroopers gathering around the cave from their Lancet interceptor, taking down numerous of the Imperial forces and causing massive chaos and confusion in their ranks before taking off.
As the other Jedi left the planet, Nillanthir faced off with the clone troopers invading the cave. Using hit-and-run attacks and the cave’s environments, Zerati brought down scores of enemies and halted their advance. Soon, however, Aoshi himself appeared and moved the troopers aside to deal with Nillanthir.
With the troopers retreating, the two former friends were the only combatants remaining. As they stood face to face, Aoshi explained he had turned against the Jedi, because he believed them, and Nillanthir in particular, to be traitors who had to be brought down. Nillanthir attempted to convince him that this was a lie spread by their true enemies: the Empire and the Sith. Aoshi would hear nothing of it, however, and a fierce battle between the two ensued. Moving and fighting lightning fast, the warriors appeared to be equally matched for most of the battle. Eventually, though, it was Nillanthir who got the upper hand. With a sudden burst of energy, he managed to cut Aoshi down, but not before he himself sustained a wound severe enough to make him pass out.
After coming to, Nillanthir, saddened about having to kill his old friend, gave Aoshi a proper burial and paid his respects to the fallen warrior. Zerati then returned to the cave to hide and wait for the time to fight the Empire.