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Up to date as of February 04, 2010

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Bria Tharen
Biographical information
Homeworld

Corellia[1]

Born

c. 28 BBY (7), Corellia[2]

Died

0 BBY (35), Toprawa[3]

Physical description
Species

Human[1]

Gender

Female[1]

Height

1.57 meters[4]

Hair color

Red-gold[1]

Eye color

Blue-green[1]

Chronological and political information
Era(s)
Affiliation
"Only as a strong, cohesive group can we have any hope of confronting the Empire that is strangling our worlds, and killing the spirit of our peoples."
―Bria Tharen

Bria Tharen was a Corellian female who became a pilgrim on Ylesia as part of the Hutt spice/slaving operation there. Her religion was exposed as a fraud by Han Solo, with whom she later fell in love. However, the difficulties she had breaking free from the addictive Exultation caused her to leave Solo, despite her attraction to him. She later became an early commander in the Alliance to Restore the Republic, leading the fledgling Rebel forces in the Battle of Ylesia. As leader of Red Hand Squadron, she participated in many other missions in the Alliance, including several against slavers. On one fateful mission to Toprawa to help retrieve the plans for the first Death Star, her unit was surrounded by Imperial forces, and the injured Tharen committed suicide rather than face capture or execution.

Contents

Biography

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Early life

"My mother always kept a tight rein and made me feel as though I could never do anything right. Studying hard and behaving myself weren't enough for her. My father encouraged me to have a career, but all Mother could think about was my making a 'brilliant match.'"
―Bria Tharen, on her childhood

Bria's name was made up by her father from the first syllables of her grandmothers' names, Brusela and Iaphagena.[3] She grew up on a wealthy estate on Corellia's southern continent, with her parents Renn and Sera, and her brother Pavik. As a young girl, Bria wanted to be a museum curator and had spent a couple of summers working on a dig, learning to preserve ancient treasures. When she finished her undergraduate schooling at seventeen (Corellia's legal age), she was due to go to university on Coruscant to study archaeology with an emphasis on ancient art. Bria's mother had been pushing her towards a marriage to Dael Levare, who was from one of the richest families on Corellia. When Bria dumped him for being unfaithful, her mother was furious with her for ruining the wedding plans.[5]

Ylesia

"I want to serve the One, be part of the All, forever."
―Bria Tharen talks about her religion
Bria Tharen.

Upset and angry, Bria attended a revival being held by a t'landa Til missionary from Ylesia. Believing their pleasure-producing Exultation to be a religious experience, Bria sold all her jewelry to buy passage to Ylesia, and spent nearly a year processing glitterstim for the Besadii clan. During her time on Ylesia, Bria was forced to give up all her possessions, including her name, and was known only as Pilgrim 921. Her poor diet caused her to become excessively thin while spending extended time in the dark left her pale. The dangerous work also left her with scars on her hands from the sharp threads of glitterstim.[5]

She later attracted the romantic attention of a young pilot named Han Solo who was working for Besadii on Ylesia. At first Bria resisted her feeling for Han, since relationships were forbidden by her new-found religion, but the two became friends. High Priest Teroenza needed someone to manage his collection of antiquities, and Han, knowing Bria's background, suggested her for the job. Bria enjoyed being able to use her knowledge of antiques in her new work and considered it an honor to work for the High Priest. Although Bria insisted that she still live with the other pilgrims, her new job gave her access to better food and sunlight allowing her to shed her pale, thin appearance.[5]

Han made a secret recording of the priests admitting Bria's religion was a hoax and played it to her. Bria didn't believe him, so Han gave her a vial of glitterstim so she could use its telepathic effects to read his mind and find out the truth. Instead, Bria took the vial when she next attended devotions and used it to read Teroenza's mind. Realizing that everything she believed in was a lie, Bria decided to leave Ylesia with Han and together they plotted their escape.[5]

Using security codes which Bria had obtained from Teroenza's mind they planned to steal several items from the t'landa Til's collection and escape aboard his private yacht, Talisman, along with the Togorians Muuurgh and Mrrov, but their escape had to be brought forward when Teroenza arranged for Bria to marry his elderly majordomo, Ganar Tos. During their escape, they were caught by Teroenza and his Hutt overlord, Zavval, who was killed while trying to stop them.[5]

Life with Han Solo

"You've been free all your life, Han. And strong. I envy you for that. I'm going to be free someday, too. And strong."
―Bria Tharen, in her farewell letter to Han Solo

After leaving Ylesia, the group traveled to Togoria to take Muuurgh and Mrrov home. While there, Bria and Han were able to spend time together, but Bria was already starting to feel withdrawal from her addiction to the Exultation.[5]

After leaving Togoria, Bria and Han returned to Corellia where she was reunited with her family. Although Bria's father gave Han a warm welcome for rescuing his daughter, her mother and brother were suspicious of the young pilot and disapproved of his relationship with Bria. Their suspicions were confirmed when Dael Levare recognized Han and called him by an alias he had used while involved in a con several years earlier. Although Renn Tharen forbade his wife and son from reporting Han to CorSec, Bria didn't trust them not to do it behind his back and decided that she and Han should leave Corellia.[5]

The couple traveled to Coruscant, where Han planned to apply to the Imperial Academy. Bria was still fighting her addiction and felt that she was drawing on Han's strength to help her. Afraid that she was holding him back and that he couldn't follow his dreams of joining the Imperial Navy with her around, Bria left to confront the addiction alone.[5]

Joining the resistance

Bria Tharen.
"It cost me everything that was important to me, basically. Love, family … security. But it was worth it, to be myself. And it brought me a new purpose in life."
―Bria Tharen tells Winter about overcoming her addiction and joining the Resistance

Bria spent almost three years trying to overcome her addiction to the Exultation, wandering from world to world, trying everything from meditation to drugs. Twice she bought tickets to return to Ylesia, though she could never go through with it. Eventually, Bria found the strength she needed when she decided to fight against slavery and the Empire that condoned it. She returned to Corellia, and joined Garm Bel Iblis's resistance movement, cutting off all ties with her family, though she sent a message to her father a couple of times a year to let him know she was alright.[3]

Bria was frequently involved in undercover intelligence work, putting skills in establishing false identities that she'd learned from Han to use. One mission saw her working on the civilian staff at Imperial headquarters on Corellia. Although her position only gave her access to bureaucratic lists such as supply orders, she learned how to use her looks to manipulate information out of Admiral Trefaren.[6]

On another mission, Bria went undercover posing as Moff Sarn Shild's mistress, though in truth his sexual preferences weren't for Human women and he kept her around as a show object. Although she hated the assignment, Bria was able to funnel a large amount of information back to Corellia. While in this assignment Bria once again encountered Han Solo, when he visited Moff Shild on behalf of the Desilijic Hutts to dissuade him from taking action against them. Bria was unable to tell Han the truth and he left thinking that her relationship with Shild was genuine. Bria withdrew from her assignment with Shild shortly before his suicide after his fleet's failure at the Battle of Nar Shaddaa.[6]

The Corellian resistance acknowledged that in order to defeat the Empire, the various resistance groups needed to work together and Bria, now holding the rank of commander, frequently served as a liaison between various planetary Rebel groups, attempting to foster greater cooperation between them. One assignment saw Bria travel to Kashyyyk where she helped advise Wookiee resistance members on organization, codes and tactics as well as supplying them with weapons.[3]

Another mission took Bria and her aide, Jace Paol, to Cloud City on Bespin, to meet with representatives from three other resistance groups; Jennsar So-Billes from Duro, Sian Tevv from Sullust and Hric Dalhney, Winter and Ylenic It'kla from Alderaan. Although all groups were fighting for the same cause, Bria struggled to gain any commitment from them to work with the Corellian resistance. However, she did succeed in convincing Winter, who promised to help convince Bail Organa on her return to Alderaan—soon after, Organa, Bel Iblis, and Mon Mothma signed the Corellian Treaty, formally establishing the Alliance to Restore the Republic. While in Cloud City, Bria once again caught sight of Han Solo, watching him win the Cloud City Sabacc Tournament but again she made sure that he was not aware of her presence.[3]

Being involved in the resistance also gave Bria the opportunity to fight back against Besadii and their slave operation on Ylesia. During a mission to Devaron to make contact with the local resistance, Bria and Lanah Malo planned to assassinate the Ylesian priest, Veratil, who was conducting a revival there, although the plan failed when Veratil caught sight of Han Solo in the crowd and alerted his guards. The sight of Han stirred up old feelings in Bria, but she couldn't let him see her for fear of compromising her mission.[6]

Bria commanded several missions against Ylesia, to get new recruits from freed slaves. Their first raid had liberated ninety-seven slaves and earned her the wrath of the Hutts of the Besadii Clan, leading to a 50,000 credit bounty on her head. The rebels initially had difficulty persuading the freed slaves of the truth about Ylesia. The pull of the Exultation proved too strong for many and, within a month, fifty-three had run away to return to Ylesia. This, combined with the turbulent atmosphere on Ylesia, which had destroyed one of the rebel ships, discouraged further attacks on Ylesia itself for the time being.[6]

The bounty on Bria attracted Boba Fett but her frequent deep-cover assignments, together with the high security at rebel installations made her very difficult to get close to. After a year of on-off searching, Fett caught up with her on the Outer Rim planet Teth where Bria was meeting with the Tethan resistance leaders, Commander Winfrid Dagore and Lieutenant Palob Godalhi. The bounty specified that Bria should be captured alive, making it impossible for Fett to fulfill his mission while she was in the rebel base, and he was unable to track her after the conclusion of her meeting.[3]

After the signing of the Corellian Treaty, Bria was able to leave liaison work and become more involved in combat. She was given command of her own Rebel force, Red Hand Squadron and the Marauder-class corvette Retribution. Bria used Red Hand Squadron to continue to fight against slavery, leading a mission to capture the slaver vessel Helot's Shackle (later renamed Emancipator at Bria's suggestion) and rescue nearly two hundred slaves. The mission would provide an opportunity for the rebels to test new techniques for curing Exultation addiction, developed by Retribution's medical officer, Daino Hyx. The mission was a success and the rescued pilgrims were taken to Grenna Base where Hyx had great success in treating them, with over a 90 percent success rate. Many of the cured pilgrims volunteered to join the Alliance. The attack on the Helot's Shackle also led to the bounty on Bria being increased to 100,000 credits.[3]

Return to Ylesia

"Bria … I loved you."
"Han, I love you! I do! But I can't let how I feel about you jeopardize the Rebel Alliance!"
―Han Solo and Bria Tharen, during the raid on Ylesia

One month after the Helot's Shackle mission, Bria returned to Corellia to meet with her commanding officer, Pianat Torbul. During the meeting Bria suggested that, with their success in curing Exultation addiction, the time had come for a major attack on Ylesia. With over eight thousand pilgrims on Ylesia, they presented a major source of potential recruits and, in addition, they would be able to steal tons of valuable spice to help finance the war on the Empire. Although Torbul agreed to consider Bria's plan, funding such a large invasion would be difficult and safely negotiating Ylesia's atmosphere was a major concern. Bria resolved to find a solution to both problems.[3]

Bria's solution to funding was to enlist the help of the Desilijic Hutts. Although Hutts had no particular interest in the rebellion, Desilijic's business was being hurt by the Besadii clan's operations on Ylesia and Bria hoped that they might be willing to fund the attack on their rivals. Bria arranged passage to Nar Shaddaa on the luxury liner, Queen of Empire, posing as a cabaret singer. It was aboard Queen of Empire that Bria attracted the interest of Lando Calrissian. Realizing that he knew Han, Bria invited Lando to her quarters hoping to learn more about what her former lover had been doing since she last saw him.[3]

However, when Bria arrived at her quarters, she was attacked by Boba Fett who had been tracking her since she came on board. Fett quickly killed Bria's guards and was able to drug her. Fett also captured Lando when he arrived shortly afterwards. When Bria woke up, Bria asked Fett if he would let her father know that she was dead so he wouldn't have to find out when her next message failed to arrive. To her surprise, Fett agreed to the request. Before Fett could take his prize back to the Slave I, the Queen of Empire was pulled out of hyperspace by a pirate raid led by Lando's ex-girlfriend, Drea Renthal. Cornered by Renthal's pirates, Fett realized he could not fight his way out and agreed to release Lando to her if she let him go. Lando, however, refused to leave Bria to Fett and pointed out that Drea owed Han a favor. Drea offered to pay Fett the 100,000 credit bounty to let Bria go. Outnumbered by the pirates, Fett reluctantly agreed.[3]

After finally arriving on Nar Shaddaa, Bria took a shuttle to Nal Hutta for her audience with Jiliac Desilijic Tiron and Jabba Desilijic Tiure, the leaders of Desilijic. Her proposal was simple, Desilijic would finance the Rebel raid on Ylesia, and would arrange for the elimination of the t'landa Til priests beforehand. In exchange the Rebels would ensure that Besadii's operations on Ylesia were shut down for good by destroying the spice factories. Initially they refused since Jiliac was unwilling to support the Rebels. However, after Jiliac's death the next month at the hands of Durga Besadii Tai, Jabba contacted Bria and accepted her proposal.[3]

Before returning to the Rebels, Bria went for a meal with Lando who was happy to regale her with the story of the Battle of Nar Shaddaa, in which he had participated. Bria was impressed with the way the smugglers had managed to defeat the Empire in battle. Rebel pilots were eager but lacked the proper training required to negotiate Ylesia's turbulent atmosphere. Bria realized that, for any attack to succeed, the Rebels would need excellent pilots to act as guides, and that the smugglers' experience made them ideal for the job, if they would be willing to hire themselves out.[3]

After securing financing from Jabba, Bria returned to Nar Shaddaa, tracked down Han Solo and, after an emotional reunion, asked him to help her pitch her idea to various smugglers. In exchange for their assistance, the smugglers would be given a share of Ylesia's spice and Bria promised to give Han a share of Teroenza's collection. Despite the conflicting emotions he still felt after 10 years, Han's business sense overcame his personal feelings and he agreed. After recruiting smugglers on Nar Shaddaa, Bria and Han went to Togoria to pick up their old friends, Muuurgh and Mrrov, along with several other Togorians who wished to help in the attack. Being back on Togoria stirred up old feeling and Bria and Han resumed their relationship.[3]

Bria Tharen, during her time in the Rebel Alliance.

After returning to the fleet, Bria began final preparations for the imminent assault. The night before the mission, Bria received a message from Pianat Torbul. Intelligence reports indicated that the Empire was planning a major assault and the Alliance would need all the resources they could get if they were going to survive.[3]

The Battle of Ylesia saw the Rebels encounter heavier resistance than expected, but they were able to overcome defending forces, capture the planet and free the slaves. After the battle, the Rebel forces placed the smugglers under guard and, as per orders, kept all of the spoils for the Rebellion. Bria tried to persuade Han to go with her and to fight the Empire at her side, but Han was devastated by her betrayal and made it clear he didn't want anything more to do with her. She and Han parted on the worst of terms.[3]

The Yavin Vassilika

Bria Tharen, holding a fake Yavin Vassilika.

The former lovers were, however, destined for one more reunion. While working under General Jan Dodonna, Tharen had helped place a four million credit reward for the Yavin Vassilika using the money made from the Battle of Ylesia. The artifact contained a key to the Massassi Temple on Yavin 4 and was needed to set up the Rebel's new base there. Bria's knowledge of antiquities would allow her to confirm that the artifact was genuine.[7]

Jozzel Moffet tricked the Hutts, Jabba, Malta and Embra into a competition to find the Vassilika. Han unwittingly had a hand in delivering the Vassilika to the Rebellion when, working for Jabba, he helped Moffet locate the artifact, only for her to betray him and deliver it to Yavin IV to meet with the Rebels. However, the exchange was soon broken up by Han and the other treasure hunters hired to find the Vassilika by the Hutts.[7]

Han was still visibly furious with Bria, even after she helped save him from Dengar and Bossk who were looking to exact revenge on Solo. Once again, Han had helped Bria get something for the Rebellion and was left with nothing.[7]

Final mission

Tharen, holding a blaster on Yavin 4.
"I don't want to die either, Sk'kot. But I sure as blazes don't want the Empire to win. I don't want good people massacred, or taken as slaves, or taxed until they can't feed their families or live a decent life. Or just murdered by some Imperial Moff who woke up cranky that morning. So it's okay that we're not going to get out of here, right, Sk'kot? It's okay that we're going to go down doing our jobs, because they did theirs. We can't let them down, right?"
―Bria Tharen talks to Sk'kot Burrid about their fallen comrades

The credits raised at Ylesia helped the Rebels learn that the Empire was storing plans to a new secret weapon on Toprawa. Soon afterwards, Tharen and Red Hand Squadron went to Toprawa with orders to seize the Imperial comm center and hold it while comm techs transmitted the plans to the courier ship, Tantive IV, which would be passing through the system. Shortly after the plans were transmitted, Red Hand Squadron was overwhelmed by Imperial forces,[3] and Bria swallowed a poison pill to avoid capture and interrogation. She died never knowing the importance of the plans she'd helped to recover.[1]

On Tatooine, one day before his meeting with Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi, Han Solo received word of her death from Boba Fett, keeping his promise to let her father know when she died. Bria had never told him how to contact her father so, knowing Solo could reach him, Fett asked Han to pass on the message to Renn Tharen, a request to which Han sadly complied.[3]

Personality and traits

Intelligent and independent minded, the young Bria was much more like her father than her mother. Her relationship with her mother was difficult at times, with Sera's wish for Bria to live a high society lifestyle and marry into a family of good breeding conflicting with Bria's desire to continue her studies and make her own way in the world. The falling out between the two after Bria split from Dael Levare was the culmination of years of tension.

Perhaps it was her feelings of anger and sorrow that left Bria vulnerable to the powerful effects of the Exultation. The seemingly religious experience made her feel that she had found something important, a purpose in life that she could truly believe in. The effects of the Exultation addiction and the hard life of a slave on Ylesia took their toll and, by the time she met Han Solo, Bria was a changed person, broken and weak.

It is, however, a testament to her inner strength that she was able to overcome both the mental and physical effects of her experience at Ylesia. It was also due, in no small part, to her finding a true purpose in life: the resistance movement and the chance to help others who were suffering as she once had.

Being part of the Rebellion brought out new sides to Bria's personality. An articulate negotiator in her work as a liaison to other resistance cells, she was also capable of manipulating situations to find out what she needed. As leader of Red Hand Squadron she demonstrated her skills as a leader, inspiring loyalty from those who served with her. Perhaps less desirably, she was also ruthless and unforgiving in battle, particularly with slavers, leading to Red Hand Squadron's reputation for taking no prisoners.

Behind the scenes

Bria Tharen was created by A. C. Crispin to serve as Han Solo's romantic interest in the Han Solo Trilogy and first appeared in The Paradise Snare, the first book in the trilogy. Her only other appearance to date was in Mike Kennedy's comic Underworld: The Yavin Vassilika, set during the events of Rebel Dawn, the novel in which the character is killed.

Appearances

Wookieepedia has a collection of images related to Bria Tharen.

Sources

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 The New Essential Guide to Characters
  2. The New Essential Guide to Characters claims Bria was seventeen when she "experienced her first exultation", The Essential Guide to Planets and Moons says that she was on Ylesia for almost a year prior to Han Solo's arrival in 10 BBY.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.19 Rebel Dawn
  4. The Databank and The New Essential Guide to Characters list Bria Tharen's official height as 1.57 meters (5 ft 2 in), which is comparatively short. However, throughout the Han Solo Trilogy Tharen is labeled as a tall woman. In Rebel Dawn she is actually said to be taller than Winter, whose official height according to StarWars.com is 1.7 meters (5 ft 7 in).
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 The Paradise Snare
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 The Hutt Gambit
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Underworld: The Yavin Vassilika

External links


This article uses material from the "Bria Tharen" article on the Starwars wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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