- "You can run, but you can't hide."
- — Cadden Blackthorne
The Pursuer was a modified Firespray-31-class patrol and attack craft used by the bounty hunters Cadden Blackthorne during the Galactic Civil War, as well as for a short time afterward. It was greatly modified with advanced weapons systems by Blackthorne during his usage of the craft. Cadden was careful to keep these modifications a secret, and aside from added weaponry, he had sported it with an advanced, state-of-the-art automated security system, connection to his personal communications frequency and a radio link to his armor, an advanced navigational unit and a sensor jamming device.
For its entire time in existence, the Pursuer had remained in mystery, giving Cadden a more distinguishable reputation. However, during Cadden's pursuit for the pirate Kaldone, the Pursuer was severely damaged, in order to provide him and his cadre an opportunity to escape their target's flagship alive and intact. Later, Cadden would receive a replacement for his ship, the Pursuer II, from Talon Karde, and was later replaced once more by the Pursuer III.
Development of a LegacyEdit
- "I've made a few adjustments. The only original part of the ship is the chair I'm sitting in."
- — Cadden Blackthorne
Blackthorne purchased the Pursuer as a brand new, unmodified ship, from Kuat Systems Engineering sometime between 2 BBY and 0 ABY. Using his proceeds during his rising legacy as a famed bounty hunter, Cadden put extensive work into upgrading the ship's systems and modifying the craft into his own image. The Pursuer saw extensive use during his claim to fame, providing as Cadden's personal mode of transportation. It was an instrumental extension of his own personal being, even at times providing as backup to him in the tighter scenarios through the remote control management interface with his armor.
The Pursuer saw notable use under two of Blackthorne's most famous hunts: his successful capture of Rebel-sympathizer and Imperial senator Ubio, and the capture of the notorious dark Jedi Cazzik Wyn for Talon Karde. Blackthorne personally used the ship in both instances in order to capture and turn in both bounties for their substantial sums of credits; the former involving his successful infiltration of, and escape from, a Mon Cal Cruiser. When Blackthorne went up against Wyn, he used the Pursuer to lay down suppressive fire against the dark Jedi before he was able to capture him and contain him in the ship's Force cage. However, shortly after, with the assistance of Trai Kanossi, Blackthorne used the very same ship to help Wyn escape from imprisonment.
Possibly one of the most famed instances of the ship's history was when Blackthorne used it as a personal means to help him assault and attempt the capture of Cameo Naton. During Cadden's pursuit of the Jedi, he found himself outnumbered and outmatched when Cameo, while attempting to evade the bounty hunter, managed to illicit the aid of five other Jedi to his cause. Despite Blackthorne's grown reputation and skills, not even he was a match for the Jedi. He called the Pursuer in to reinforce his assault against their fortified position, which provided essential backup fire against the group of Jedi, and as Blackthorne managed to wound Cameo with a rocket the Jedi had been successfully able to place the ship under risk of destruction. Blackthorne was forced to flee the scene, and was forced to make expensive repairs to restore the ship to optimal performance.
Blackthorne continued to use this ship on a regular basis, up through the attack on Bilbringi, when the ship seemed to have been lost along with Blackthorne Enterprises' flagship. Up until this point, however, the ship was a critical component to many of Cadden's adventures. With the assistance of Trai Kanossi, Blackthorne used the Pursuer to assist him in freeing Ryy'Suuk from Imperial slavery, who then owed him a life-debt, and for a time served with him onboard the ship, before Cadden temporarily replaced it with a YT-1300 Light Freighter in order to accommodate for a larger number of occupants.
Two years later, Cadden was recovering from a near-fatal crash on the planet Hoth, when he picked up a mysterious signal on his helmet. Investigating the signal, he realized that it was the Pursuer broadcasting itself somewhere nearby. He took a gamble and remotely called the ship and, sure enough, the craft, apparently undamaged from the battle some time ago, landed outside the small operations outpost. He was able to bring the ship back to configuration and, within a week, he and his new ally, Zartok Ular, left the planet behind. He chose to give the ship the name Dark Shadow, and fully programmed it as a legitimate alias for the ship, and took up the moniker of "Nemesis," during this time.
The Pursuer saw what would have been considered its final days during the hunt for Kaldone, when Cadden teamed up with Jhuston Vox to bring down the pirate. During the final stage of the hunt, Cadden was faced with a dire choice during their escape from Kaldone's ship. The Pursuer was subsequently set up by Zartok to detonate at Cadden's command, and as he hitched a ride with Vox away from the ship, he sent the signal to his own. The resulting explosion caused havoc and sheer amounts of destruction in the hangar, giving them ample opportunity to escape during the confusion. The ship would shortly after be replaced by the Pursuer II.
Kaldone and his crew, however, saw no need for the nearly-obliterated starship, finding that the cost to repair it would far outweigh the benefits, and decided to cut their losses and take what was left of the Pursuer to a scrapyard for some spare credits, identifying the ship as the once-famous ship that Blackthorne piloted. For some time, the ship remained at the junkyard, until it was eventually discovered by a mechanic, who began to diligently reconstruct the ship. The mechanic would, however, find that the Firespray was in no shape to be restored to its last configuration, and as such was only able to restore it to factory make, scrapping all of the now-useless modifications Cadden had put into it.
The Pursuer came under a reputation for being "cursed," as its new owner made the claim that it brought him nothing but bad luck, and ultimately sold the craft off.
The Pursuer, like all Firesprays, sat with the engines facing the surface when idle, but rotated 90 degrees for flight. The ship was well-armed, and Blackthorne took great care to modify it on a regular basis. Its weaponry included two twin turreted dual blaster cannons, a concealed forward-firing concussion missile tube launchers, each holding a magazine of three homing missiles or other various payloads, a concealed forward-firing ion cannon, and two concealed turret mounted proton torpedo launchers. Blackthorne used special dummy proton torpedoes mounted with homing beacons and S-thread trackers, thus allowing him to track ships through hyperspace. The ship was also outfitted with a sensor array that could detect minute changes in the ship's mass, which could be used to find homing beacons.
Cadden added a spartan crew quarters since the design was suited for short-term patrols. On top of all this, he devoted two-thirds of the entire ship's interior to the powerful upgraded Kuat drive engines and power generators, giving the Pursuer the sublight speed greater than an Alliance BTL Y-wing Starfighter — a remarkable feat for a ship of the Pursuer's size. There was a combination airlock and docking ring behind the cockpit, although this was covered by a sensor dish at various points in the vessel's history.