Posted by: alexwinger | February 10, 2008

A Brief History of Garos

The Early Years

Garosian historians refer to the discovery of their homeworld as one of the fortunes of war. Records from the Archives at the University of Garos in Ariana indicate that spacers had been unaware of the existence of habitable worlds in the section of space beyond the Nyarikan Nebula. Few attempts had been made to pass through the nebula, and hyperspace routes bypassed it completely.

Approximately 4,000 years ago, a group of human refugees, fleeing from their war- and famine-ravaged homeworld journeyed toward Coruscant to begin life anew. On route, their ship was attacked by pirates. They escaped by entering the Nyarikan Nebula, a spatial anomaly stretching approximately four light years across, the remnants of a supernova explosion millenia ago. For several days, the interstellar travellers journeyed blindly through the nebula, their navicomputers virtually useless. Finally emerging into clear space, they headed for the nearest star, which they called Gariisa, in homage to their leader, Trae Garos.

Drawn toward the fourth planet orbiting the star because of its blue-green appearance, the refugees found the world inhabited by abundant wildlife and covered with verdant river valleys. They quickly decided to explore the planet for possible settlement, and the ten colony ships landed in the Morcur Valley.

From that base camp, survey teams fanned out across the northern continent. They were delighted to discover that the city they named Zila had once harbored a flourishing civilization. Old stone turrets lined Zila’s waterfront. Ancient cannon, corroded from the elements, pointed south across the ocean defending the presidio against attack from sea-going vessels. What happened to the original inhabitants of Zila is unknown—except for the structures they left behind, there is no trace of them. Their city remained frozen in time until the arrival of the new colonists.

While one group settled in Zila, a second band, comprised mostly of farmers, found the soil of the Morcur Valley ideal for agriculture. The city of Garan, bisected by the Salc River, was established on the southwestern edge of the valley and serves, even to this day, as the distribution point for foodstuffs.

Further west, and situated along the awe-inspiring Tahika Cliffs, Ariana was settled by those who sought solitude to pursue the more philosophical arts. It seemed only natural that educational interests spring from this group; Garos’ first institution of higher learning was opened within two years of colonization.

Content in their isolation, the early Garosian settlers did not seek contact with other worlds. The abundance of resources on Garos IV made outside trade unnecessary. But when the Sundar Corporation established a mining colony on the third planet, Sundari, the parliamentary-elected rulers of Garos (who had made Ariana their seat of government) were more than willing to trade foodstuffs and other necessities for raw materials.

Posted by: alexwinger | January 30, 2008

January updates

Posts added in January 2008 are based on an unpublished sourcebook of Garos IV that I wrote for WEG back in 1997. That manuscript was shared with Dan Wallace when he was writing The Essential Guide to Planets and Moons (1998). I hope to add more of that material to this blog as I have time!

Posted by: alexwinger | January 30, 2008

Climate of Garos IV

The Northern Continent of Jencosi
Temperate climates prevail in the most densely-populated regions of Jencosi, with desert and semiarid regions in the central interior to the east of the Morcur Valley and a small area of tropical climate in the extreme southeast. In the winter, winds from the polar regions bring low temperatures to the south and west. The central Highlands are quite cold, and experience numerous snowfalls, while the east remains relatively warm. Summers are mild in the west, warm in the south and east, and hot in the southeast.

The Southern Continent of Reyfej
Reyfej is a land of extremes. Blizzards are common in its mountainous areas and peaks remain snow-covered for most of the year. Other parts of the continent are arid and hot with minimal rainfall.

Posted by: alexwinger | January 30, 2008

Garos IV geography

Garos IV is a world of diverse and breathtaking landscapes.

The continent Reyfej
Garos’ highest elevations are located on Reyfej in the southern hemisphere, where some of the planet’s most magnificent mountain ranges are located. The central and southern sections of the continent are pockmarked with hundreds of thousands of craters, presumably formed millions of years ago when meteorites struck the planet. The largest one, known as Simjak’s Crater, is 187 kilometers in diameter and 2250 meters at its deepest. Additionally, volcanic eruptions played a part in the Reyfej’s formation, and even today tectonic activity is widespread, with thousands of geysers and hot springs dotting the landscape.

Highest peak: Mt. Ekim, elevation 1.78 km

The continent Jencosi
Four thousand kilometers to the north across the Cabalia Sea, Garos’ only other large land mass, the continent known as Jencosi, is characterized by a mountain range extending the length of the western coastline. The mountains sweep east toward the Morcur Valley, an agricultural district spanning more than 900,000 square kilometers. The Valley produces enough foodstuffs to feed the entire population of Garos IV and its neighbor, the planet Sundari. Most recently, agricultural goods have been garnered by the Empire to supply its fleet.

Further to the east, broad plains rise slowly to an area the natives call the Highlands. This series of mountainous plateaus and sandy desert basins remain a retreat for vacationers seeking adventure in an untouched wilderness.

East of the Highlands, plateaus give way to rolling plains that wind down toward the Sea of Garos. Here, the coastline is very irregular, and along its southernmost front, it is indented by deep inlets. Small farms and isolated settlements are scattered across the region. The lowlands are crisscrossed with waterways, both natural and artificial, and dotted with lakes. People who live here tend to ignore events on the rest of the planet and prefer to be left alone.

There are three main centers of population on Garos IV: Zila, Garan, and Ariana.

Zila, located on the continent’s southcentral coast, is a resort city, known for its architecutural diversity. Garan is a bustling metropolis sitting on the edge of the fertile Morcur Valley some 40 kilometers inland from the Locura Ocean. It serves as a center of manufacturing and agriculture. The capital city Ariana, on the southwestern coast, is an intellectual and business center dominated by the prestigious University of Garos. It also serves as the main base of Imperial operations on the planet.

Posted by: alexwinger | January 27, 2008

Imperial Headquarters – Ariana

Imperial HQ sits nearly a half kilometer from the Tahika Cliffs, but even from that distance it has a magnificient view of the Locura Ocean. Built on the eastern edge of an expansive city park, this 200 year old structure is like a living history datatext. The four-story building had been the home of Garos’ parliamentary-style government and was known as Foundation Hall. It now serves as the base of operations for all Imperial activity on the planet. It houses the offices of Imperial Governor Tork Winger, General Andreig Zakar, the Supreme Military Commander of Garos IV, and their staffs. However, its halls still resonate with the very lifeblood of the people who were part of the planet’s past.

A mural on the marbelite ceiling just inside the entrance depicts the signing of the “Great Treaty”, the document that established Garos’ first government nearly 4,000 years ago. Fifty men and women attended that auspicious event. Though their painted faces are mere representations, each one displays an emotional intensity so great, it is impossible not to feel that you are sharing their pride.

Entry Rotunda
The entry rotunda of the headquarters is extraordinary. One of the earliest prime ministers, Kaib Garos, great-great grandson of the original refugees’ leader, had a penchant for acquiring ancient weapons of war. His collection is displayed here—antique blasters of every size and description cover the wood-paneled walls, and criss-crossed swords form borders around the doorways that lead into the north and south wings of the building.

It was in this very rotunda some 96 years ago, that a sentry became Ariana’s first casualty in the Garosian Civil War. A stray bullet killed the young soldier. To honor his memory and the memories of all those who died during the conflict, a monument was erected on the boulevard just north of the building. Its eternal flame was extinguished by the Empire on three occasions. Each time unusual things occurred in the building, including the unexplained deaths of two Imperial officers.

Portraits of Garos’ rulers, from the earliest times to the present, line the hallways. Some were wise leaders, like Edern Teles who laid the groundwork for Rindom Medical Center and its network of regional facilities planetwide. Others, like Tigol Fassel, did nothing but fill their own coffers at the expense of the local populace.

Today, leadership of this world lies with Imperial Governor Tork Winger, a native of Garos. Winger possesses a sincerity and charm that is practically unheard of in the late Emperor’s appointees. Indeed, he has been the voice of moderation. His influence in the Empire’s operations on his homeworld has been undeniable.

Posted by: alexwinger | January 27, 2008


Located approximately 10 kilometers from the southwestern tip of Garos IV’s northern continent, Ariana sits perched along the Tahika Cliffs, one of Garos’ most gorgeous natural geological features. Encompassing some 545 square kilometers, the city fans out in a semi-circular pattern centered on the University of Garos. Beneath the city, a honeycomb of naturally-formed tunnel systems crisscrosses the entire area.

Ariana has a population of 3.5 million. Settled by colonists early in Garos’ history, it began its life as an educational haven, a city devoted to the pursuit of scholarly activities. The seat of government was established here shortly after the founding of the university.

Posted by: alexwinger | December 8, 2007

alex winger & the blog

Greetings! I am moving the Alex site because it’s easier to update here… not that I have a lot of time to add new things but who knows!

Use the categories on the right sidebar to navigate around the site.

Posted by: alexwinger | December 8, 2007

day 100 of my 19th year…

We know we cannot win the war against the Empire without help. We do what we can with limited resources while we wait for the New Republic–they must hear our calls for aid. They will come. I know they will come.

Posted by: alexwinger | December 8, 2007

tork winger

My adoptive father was born in Ariana on Garos IV, 60BBY. He is the son of the late Davodan and Radelia Winger.

Tork’s brothers were all military men who died while serving the Old Republic:

Parc, 61BBY-29BBY

Jad, 58 BBY-30BBY
Daine, 57BBY-15BBY
Braithe, 55BBY-27BBY

Military career

  • graduate of the Academy at Carida
  • spent 5 years in the Army, resigned his commission (as a Lieutenant) then returned to Garos IV

Alex’s note: I am not sure what posts my father was assigned to. Funny, it was one of the few topics we never discussed …

Political career

  • entered politics at the age of *28
  • served as Assistant to the Minister of Commerce
  • by the age of 37, appointed to serve as Assistant Minister of Commerce
  • negotiated with Sundari rebels to end the Garosian Civil War
  • appointed Imperial Governor by the Emperor Palpatine 5BBY

Married Sallie Lontie 20BBY

  • adopted Alex 5BBY

*Alex’s note: I am not certain about some of the dates or my father’s age when he attained certain positions with the Garosian goverment. I believe my ‘guesses’ are close. I suppose I could easily access this information through archives maintained at the University but my work with the Underground keeps me very busy.

Posted by: alexwinger | November 28, 2007

what is BBK?

That’s “Betrayal by Knight”, the last story published* in the Alex timeline. It was co-written with Patricia Jackson.

*well, last published in the Star Wars Adventure Journal. As mentioned elsewhere on this blog, “Shades of Gray” was published in Dec. 2009 on
–updated Sept. 2010

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