After capturing Count Dooku and General Grievous, Chancellor Palpatine informs Mace Windu that there has been an attack involving Separatists and possibly Darth Maul. “By all means – do whatever it takes,” says Palpatine to Windu. “Whatever resources you require – bring these villains to justice before they inflict any more harm on the galaxy.”
After some conferring amongst Obi-Wan Kenobi, Tiplee, Aayla Secura, and Mace Windu, they realize there had been fighting amongst Separatist forces as well as Mandalorian forces on Ord Mantell. Kenobi and Tiplee then decide to check out a known Mandalorian supply outpost in that area.
Meanwhile, Darth Maul contacts Darth Sidious with Count Dooku and General Grievous, sitting captured, seeking to threaten Darth Sidious. Sidious, however, nonchalantly says “Kill them. I have no use for either one of them.” However, Sidious warns, “Tread lightly, Maul. Revenge is a dangerous game. One you never seem to win.”
After sending General Grievous to the brig, Maul speaks with Count Dooku to make him an offer: “You abandoned the Jedi when you understood the Sith were gaining power,” Maul tells him. “Now I suggest you abandon Sidious and serve me.” However, Dooku believes very strongly in Sidious’ power, yet Maul counters with Mother Talzin’s power: “Mother Talzin has shown me the real power – I have seen the truth. Sidious is weaker than we realize. He fears Mother, and that – with our combined strength – will be his undoing.”
After Dooku protests by saying that she previous tried killing him, she is somehow summoned or otherwise reified through Darth Maul, and addresses Dooku’s concerns: “Forgive our previous disagreements. You were only following your master’s will. Sidious is deceiving you, as he once deceived me.”
She then tells him that “Sidious seduces you with promises of power, but he already seeks to replace you.”
She then tells Dooku about her having been deceived by Sidious: “Long ago, Sidious came to me on Dathomir. We exchanged secret wisdom – mingled Dark Side abilities with Nightsister Magicks. He promised to make me his right hand, but instead, he stole what was most dear to me…my own flesh and blood. My son!” She continued: “When Sidious realized Maul’s potential, he took him from me and trained him as a Sith. When he was no longer useful, Maul was left to die.”
She finishes off by warning Dooku about Sidious betraying him, as well, and inviting him to ally with her and Maul.
At that moment, the Jedi and clone troopers attack. In the confusion, Dooku is able to force-push a button, freeing General Grievous from his cell in the brig, whereby he was able to easily get through a bunch of Mandalorians and then jettison away in an escape pod.
As the Jedi are approaching, Maul asks Dooku – will Dooku ally with him or will he die? Dooku chooses to go fight the Jedi with Maul. When Obi-Wan Kenobi sees Maul and Dooku, he observes, “So it is true – you are working together!” This yields Maul’s response, “Of course. Only our shared hatred of you could be strong enough to unite us.”
We then see Mace Windu and Aayla Secura arrive to backup Tiplee and Obi-Wan Kenobi, with Maul taking on Secura and Windu, and Dooku taking on Kenobi and Tiplee. Following Dooku’s impaling of Tiplee, one of the Mandalorians shoots a rocket, causing an explosion and disruption, allowing Maul and Dooku to escape on a gauntlet ship.
As the issue concludes, Mace Windu reports back to Chancellor Palpatine about the episode, saying “It appears that Count Dooku and Darth Maul are allies now, which could solve a long-standing mystery, which is that Dooku is the Sith master we have been seeking all along, and Maul is the apprentice.” While Windu is a bit puzzled, Palpatine closes off by saying “Well, you’ve done all you can. It is unfortunate that this opportunity slipped through your fingers.” Ironically, he concludes, “I fear, in the end, it could prove disastrous for the Republic.”