A new preview for Marvel Comics’ upcoming Doctor Aphra #5 book claims there are two rings that worn together can grant an individual “eternal life.”
The newly launched Doctor Aphra series is written by Alyssa Wong, who accused Marvel Comics Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski of being a racist before landing a job at the company. She’s joined by artist Marika Cresta.
The series takes place during the events of The Empire Strikes Back and specifically after the Battle of Hoth. After stealing a shipment of Rebel contraband from Imperial troopers on Hoth, Aphra is approached by a college student named Detta Yao about a pair of mythological artifacts called The Rings of Vaale.
Yao claims that the “rings grant their wearer eternal life and boundless fortune when they’re worn together.” However, she also notes that they are cursed. But Aphra isn’t worried about the curse dismissing it as superstition created to prevent people from seeking the rings.
Aphra quickly accepts the deal to acquire the rings and heads to the Ruins of Kolkur in the Outer Rim to find Doctor Eustacia Okka, a supposed expert on the rings.
However, after tracking down Okka, Aphra discovers that another party is also interested in the rings, Ronen Tagge. And Tagge has an obsession of destroying rare artifacts after he’s the last one to touch them.
He explains, “the only thing that makes my blood sing more than owning something precious is being the last person to touch it.”
After recruiting Okka, she leads Aphra and her team that includes Black Krrsantan, Yao, and a sniper named Just Lucky to the planet of Dianth in the Malitoris System. There they discover the Lost City of Vaale.
While exploring the city and attempting to find the location of the two rings, it’s revealed the two rings actually have their own titles, The Ring of Fortune and The Ring of Immortality.
While they would discover The Ring of Fortune, the Ring of Immortality was missing. It was not located in its case in the Inner Sanctum of the Architects’ Workshop in Vaale.
However, a game of double crossing occurs. One of Aphra’s party, Lucky, is revealed to be an agent of Tagge and comes away with The Ring of Fortune and promptly sets off to deliver it to his benefactor.
Lucky also leaves Aphra and her party to fend for themselves. While Aphra and Okka try to find a way out of the catacombs underneath the city they discover that the supposed curse Yao originally warned about is actually the city that’s been built out of bone matter. And it could potentially drive them crazy.
However, while it appears it’s the city driving the individuals mad, Lucky is still hearing a sound emitting from The Ring of Fortune despite being away from the city.
While Lucky is taking the ring to Tagge, Aphra and her team eventually escape the catacombs and just as soon as they do, Tagge’s military forces destroy the entire city of Vaale as well as Aphra’s starship despite The Ring of Immortality missing.
Fortunately, for Aphra she discovers a High Republic starship that just so happened to be abandoned on the planet and in full working order. She decides to bait Tagge and gets her and the rest of her team captured.
Now, in this new preview from Star Wars, it’s revealed Tagge already had The Ring of Immortality and has been wearing it since the beginning of the series.
He even reveals that the ring has been in his family’s possession for numerous generations after they acquired it from an infamous space pirate.
And once he found out that the ring was actually The Ring of Immortality, it made him want to not only obtain The Ring of Fortune, but also to destroy them and erase all knowledge of them from the galaxy.
However, in order to stop him from destroying the rings. Aphra claims that the stories and legends surrounding the rings that they actually do grant eternal life, incredible fortune, and limitless power are true.
Aphra even explains to demonstrate the rings’ abilities and power.
The preview ends there, but the implication is that these rings do indeed hold this power when worn together.
Now, given this is comics it’s quite possible there is a twist and the rings are indeed cursed and their supposed gift of eternal life could be something twisted like eternal life through zombification or being kept alive in stasis, unable to actually act.
If it is something like stasis, it’s actually been done before. The Sith Lord Exar Kun ritually sacrifices thousands of Massassi lives in order to “shed the chains of his mortal body and run rampant throughout the cosmos.”
However, the ritual doesn’t actually allow him to gain immortality and shed his mortal flesh. Instead, his spirt is trapped in a temple on Yavin IV.
While it’s quite possible there will be a twist with the rings, if there isn’t, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the rings do grant eternal life, it would just be another slap in the face to Star Wars fans who appreciate the rise, the fall, and redemption of Anakin Skywalker.
Skywalker falls to the Dark Side after Darth Sidious tempts him with not only the keys to immortality, but the ability to keep others alive specifically his wife, Padme.
We’ll find out when the new issue of Doctor Aphra arrives on October 28th.
What do you make of the introduction of these rings? Do you think they will actually grant eternal life?