Yoda jumped above Palpatine’s blade and ducked to the side. He swirled around like a demented top and slashed viciously at Palpatine. The Dark Emperor stepped back and raised his blade and brought it down. Yoda dropped and rolled to the side and spin-jumped back up. He launched into a flurry of swipes and feints at Palpatine, not allowing the Sith Lord to even jab at Yoda. Suddenly, the second elevator hissed open and Vader jumped at Yoda in a snap. The Grand Master of the Jedi Order jumped forward seven meters and turned, waiting. Palpatine and his apprentice turned to face him, lightsabers held in front of them. The main elevator doors flew open and the three remaining Jedi burst into the room and targeted the Emperor at once. Tara went for Vader, who seemed to have repaired his calf prosthetics before coming. The Jedi Masters were hounding Palpatine. The Emperor ran to his desk and slapped a button. A side door slid open and a whole squad of Elite Stormtrooper bodyguards flooded out, the business ends of their blaster cannons blaring. Yoda just ignored them and continued fighting Palpatine. Mace also did likewise. Obi Wan, however, turned and shoved the troops away. He turned back; and immediately ducked to avoid being decapitated by Vader’s blade. Tara swiped from behind but Vader jumped up and landed behind Obi Wan. Palpatine decided it was time to help Vader and pushed Yoda away. He Force-jumped behind Tara and raised his blade. Tara turned. Too late. Palpatine’s blade slashed through Tara’s stomach and the Jedi Knight fell to the ground. At this point, Obi Wan and Mace, shocked by Palpatine’s move, used the Force and pushed him away simultaneously. The Dark Emperor flew across the room. Just as they were readying themselves to jump to their target, the door slid open and half a dozen Tara clones rushed in. Given the real Jedi’s affinity to the Force, they realized that the odds were heavily against them. Yoda took a ginormous leap over everything and landed just before the elevator doors. There, he hurriedly set a fragmentation mine and beckoned to the remaining Jedi. Mace levitated Tara’s limp body across the room to the elevator’s now open doors, then he and Obi Wan jumped as one over the mine into the elevator. Yoda slapped the panel and the doors whirred shut. The elevator shot down, its passengers doubled over panting for breath. At the 20th level, Hangar Bays, they were greeted, unfortunately, by another squad of troops, this time Storm Commandos. They rushed out and ran around pell-mell towards the Strike
. They jumped in and Mace rushed to the cockpit, engaged the engines and took the ship out of the madhouse. As they shot into Hyperspace, Yoda shook his head sadly.
“Gone, she is,” he said, referring to Tara, who was lying in the medbay.