Fives and Echo returned to Coruscant boasting the double pauldrons and kamas of ARC troopers, their Phase II armor standing out next to everyone else’s standard gear. But nothing was really official until it was celebrated—and the 501st never refused a chance to celebrate anything.
That night, blue-painted clones packed themselves into the bar 79s. Colored lights glancing off a sea of plastoid armor flashed in time to the thudding bass. Most soldiers loitered, talking to brothers; few danced. Those who did had found civilian partners, and were the envy of their brothers.
“So there I was,” Fives said, sitting at a table of three women, “on a barren rock of a moon. The clankers flanking us outnumbered us ten to one. Behind us, a giant Rishi eel picked us off one by one. I grabbed my rifle, took aim, and shot it straight in the eye!” All the women gasped. Fives took this opportunity to pass his helmet around, displaying the eel art.