| Starship reposession
|| COLLECTION DEGREE: Moderate
|| Access keycards
The three keycards provide initial data on each vessel, including make/model and visual of the ship, basic GPS, and identity of the last known loaner. Dall reviews the data, informing the crew of each prospect. The ships are located on Kor Akijiic in Hutt space, Geonosis, and Naboo respectively. After a brief discussion, they decide to proceed to Naboo first, Geonosis second, and Kor Akijiic third.
The Solace is registered to a landing hangar on the opposite end of the portage district. Dall slices into the network to acquire some basic information on the vessel of interest, with the intention to continue slicing live while the others acquire additional information. Asa and Senton are sent on recon and scope out the hangar from a distance. Raymus and Ji’Ar decide to play tourist and attempt an up-close-and-personal view of the ship. Meanwhile, Sa’fran states she will mosey with the nobles to acquire useful information.
Senton utilizes his macrobinoculars to peer through the windows and open hangar sections. He observes the presence of a dozen Imperial Stormtroopers as a detail to … Imperial Inquisitor Szhi’xok … who pauses a discussion for a moment, turns, and seems to look directly at Senton. A chill runs down the Cathar’s spine and tail until the Inquisitor waves off the feeling and resumes his oration. Asa focuses on the structural points, entrances and exits, and blind spots. She provides instruction for Team Tourist to enter with minimal hassle. They warn of what to expect inside.
Wanting to catch a glimpse of the beautiful and sleek Naboo barge, Team Tourist soon encounters the Stormtrooper guards, halting further progress. The duo play it off, still surveying the ship, noting its orientation, tech attendants, and visible cargo. The Inquisitor approaches, though remains several strides behind the line of troopers. He reprimands the civilians for trespassing, allows only one further moment to look upon the ship while visibly scrutinizing them, and then corrals them out of the hangar.
Meanwhile, Dall utilizes the acquired information and observations to slice deeper, learning that the intended passengers are Naboo dignitaries from House Jhade. The Inquisitor is apparently escorting the passengers to Coruscant, specifically the daughter, Maera Jhade to the Sith Academy. The Bothan shares this information with the crew, adding some encouragement to sway the others in favor of diverting the teenage girl from what he believes to be certain doom and that dignitary Sibo Jhade will ultimately be grateful.
Dall – “He’s worth his weight in gold in favors.”
Raymus highly encourages a well-thought out plan prior to proceeding. They agree that acquiring the girl will benefit stealing the ship, if for no other purpose than to present an enticing diversion that will lure Szhi’xok from the hangar bay. Using the added information of dinner arrangements at dignitary Jhade’s palatial residence, the crew devises a three-part plan.
| Part I
|| Raymus and Sa’fran will cause a distraction at the speeder arrival zone, in order for Dall to slip in and masquerade as a valet, for the purpose of securing the getaway vehicle.
| Part II
|| Asa and Senton will covertly gain entry to the palatial estate, convince (or coerce) Maera Jhade to accompany them, and navigate to the getaway vehicle.
| Part III
|| Ji’Ar will find a way to knock out the local power grid, at least temporarily, which should allow the getaway to occur and for Han to slip inside the hangar and prep for takeoff.
The Human and Twi’Lek imbibe a few drinks for their cover story and then proceed to the festivities in boisterous fashion. They cause enough of a scene to warrant attention and threat of removal by law enforcement. The duo depart after ensuring the Bothan moves into place, complete with receiving a monetary tip and piloting a speeder to the parking zone. The commotion is sufficient for the Cathars to gain entry via trellis and balcony.
| Asa and Senton navigate the maintenance system up to the personal chambers, where they locate Maera Jhade amidst very thoughtful apparel considerations. She presents herself as headstrong and unafraid, yet naïve. With some additional cajoling she relents to her ignorance of her fate and agrees to at least meet with an alternative prospect for training in the ways of the Force.
Upon their signal, Ji’Ar initiates Operation Blackout. The former gladiator reaches into the core of his being and focuses on the power transmitter nearby. He reaches out to try to pull it out of the ground, instead causing a series of shakes. A thrill of adrenaline fills him as the shakes continue, and the power in the region disrupts … resulting in a blackout.
The extractors weave a tangled course through the city to throw off their scent before meeting up at the hangar. Raymus and Sa’fran settle in a stopover across the street from where the Solace is parked to establish their alibi. The Captain advises the extraction crew to take their guest on board the repossessed Silver Morning, stating quite plainly he doesn’t want the noble’s daughter on his ship, so drop her off somewhere else.
The Inquisitor imposes an audience upon Raymus and Sa’fran, though they obviously have not left their lodgings all night. The freighter captain states his crew have their own reasons to be on Naboo, and he didn’t ask for details. Even with his mystical methods, Szhi’xok is unable to glean the location of his charge, though he warns the ship and its compliment are on his radar henceforth.
They set a course for a rendezvous at Mon Gazza. There the others recount delivering Maera to some mutual acquaintances. Senton adds that a Gand named Zaab accompanied the group and sent along well wishes from previous adventures.
The CREDITORS representative connects with the crew. He logs the delivery and initial condition of the Silver Morning. Reviewing the conditions for credits against the debts, the Muun informing them payment for the job is on hold pending delivery of all three vessels.
The crew boards the Solace and sets course for Geonosis …
With Dall gathering information on the mark, the crew prepares for the forthcoming challenge. The property is locked down as a prize giftable to the victor of gladiatorial bouts, purchasable via redeeming bet claim tokens, or purchasable with sufficient monetary compensation. The arena currently favors a contestant named Trehn, who has been quite successful and made a considerable name and reputation. He’s popular on what exists of the holonet. He is known for his brutality, despite using shockgloves in combat.
Ji’Ar – “If it’s all the same to you, I’d prefer to not go back into the arena. I’m an independent now.”
With the former gladiator’s position known, they opt for a direct blast and grab of the vessel. They figure with the majority of the attention set upon the arena, the hangar will yield minimal opposition. Han agrees to stay back on board the Solace with Sa’fran while the rest complete the acquisition.
They take in the sight of the arena flying by in preparation to land. Han takes controls of the ship after dropping the party at the secured entrance.
Ji’Ar leads the charge into the venting door tunnels and hangar corridors, drawing the attention of active guards and engaging in melee as necessary. Senton and Asa position themselves in the middle ground, blasting the guards as they cluster. Raymus takes some potshots and follows Dall as he trailblazes along the wall. Ji’Ar encounters some unexpected opposition, and desperately draws upon the mystical Force for resolution, filling himself with pumping adrenal and nearly collapsing the corridor on top of them in the process. Dall and Ardellian prep the solar sailor as the trio mops up behind them.
Lox’s Legend is tracked to Kor Akijiic, the throneworld for Teemo’s clan. The crate that was left in the ship by Fa-ron Rysh is presumably still on board the Hutt yacht. The vessel has remained unused for the past two weeks and is sitting in a ship compound for the clan.
However, another repo agency is hot on the trail of the vessel as well.
Setting a course to the Hutt throneworld proves no problem. Drawing upon his experience working for Teemo, Ardellian remembers a shortcut through a backdoor hyperspace trail known only to a select handful. He warns the crew, however, that simply using this particular trajectory is likely to draw some attention, and if Teemo were alive, one of his usual cover stories would have been sufficient … now, though, he’s not as certain.
“We must be cautious.”
Ji’Ar finishes preparing a delectable pickled space worms spiced with Bantha Tartare for this evening’s dining. As the crew sits to discuss their plans he brings up the plan for the third repossession. The following questions are brought up:
| How good is the security at the compound? Should we observe for a while and point out flaws in processes in how they keep an eye on the ships in the compound? Any sign of the competing repo agency once we get there? The distract and grab method seems to be our forte. I’m all for continuing along those lines.
Raymus inserts his opinion as a captain and de facto leader of the troupe, “I agree about possibly needing the distraction. First, Asa and Senton will scope out the grounds and security. Dall and I will glean information about security access codes and scheduled flights about the ship itself as much as we can. If we can find any information about any competing crews, all the better. Perhaps we can find a way to sabotage their ship and throw the eye of doubt onto them and take the blame when we snatch and grab…if that is the way we decide to go.”
Parking the Solace upon an outlying mesa, running sensor sweeps and sending in the Cathar recon team, the compound appears remarkably secure, and there is no apparent activity from a rival repo team. The vantage point overlooking the high-walled and guarded port yard is excellent for observing the activity within.
There are several shifts of guards walking the boundaries, and several roving the lower grounds. Engineers and maintenance techs work upon various vessels, moving them to maintenance bay for the repairs. The vessels are checked in and out for use and general status. A detailing crew roves among the vessels, washing and polishing the exterior and interior, and each team has a trash rover following them for discard of refuse. Some of the detailing teams seems more work-oriented than others.
One of the more relaxed detailing teams appears to spend more time inside the nicer vessels. Occasionally their refuse bags seem more full from those same ships. At the end of such jobs, they deposit their trash at a different receptacle. As of yet, that container has not been collected by a refuse droid.
Raymus remembers hearing about a cleaning facility located nearby, and with a little … incentive … some uniforms can be deemed unfit to clean and sent off to the “incinerator”. He makes a discrete call to arrange a pickup. Ji’Ar accepts the task to be a supply delivery courier with a package (of compensation), picking up the duffel at the arranged location.
Bringing back the goods to the Solace, included with the uniforms are ident cards and a current itinerary for the guard shift, good for the next two days. The ident cards, however, do not visually match any of the Solace crew.
“I think they mistook us for someone else.” Ji’Ar shrugs.
Dall examines the idents, heads to his quarters to research them, and then calls the crew to attention, "Gentlemen, I have run a quick check of the individuals on the ID’s and as expected they are all criminals, as far as I can tell. They are currently working as pirates on the fringe. They have worked for the Hutts, Rebels, and even the Empire on one occasion, but that didn’t go so well… I suspect they are the rival salvage crew we that was assigned to our task… but that’s speculation.
The crew is composed of Luma Udaal, Joq,Vera Nox, Keedo, and Zewawa.
I can try to modify the ID’s to mach us, but given that they are already forged ID’s I’m not confident on the outcome, I would suggest trying something else first, any ideas?"
“Dall,” Raymus interjects, “Let’s check the computers again for any records of ships in dock or anyone we recognize. Let’s get Han in on this too so he can look over the names of ships and people for anyone he recognizes too that might be here as a competing interest. Plus, let’s see if there is anyone known associates of the contact that I made a discrete call to who might be in the repo job business. I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”
Before departing they sit down to another well-prepared meal. Ji’Ar reveals something he remembered from his errand, “During the exchange, the contact stated, ‘This is the last favor I can do for you lot. Any more and it’ll be suspicious.’ Then he whispered ‘Lun Um Bra’. Anyone know that phrase?”
Sitting around the table eating dinner, the rest of the conversation eludes Raymus as he is deep in thought. Suddenly, the captain slaps his hand on the table and shouts, “That’s it!”
“When Ji’Ar mispronounced the phrase he heard, I couldn’t place it… then later I clarified with him and instead of “Lub Al Bum” he heard “Lun Um Bra.” Still, it wasn’t anything I could place. I just remembered… about a year ago… before I worked for Teemo, I was approached by this group of believers who tried to recruit me into their clan. I can’t remember exactly what they were all about, but I didn’t have time for them. I had a load of cargo I had to get off world before the Imperials showed up. I made a quick hop, accidentally losing my cargo, and narrowly escaped the long arm of the Emperor and then got the Hell out of there and wound up on Tatooine."
Raymus looks around at everyone staring back at him for more details.
“I can’t remember which planet it was now… it was a small job and not worth mentioning, really. I just remember a pretty female trying her best to encourage me to stay and help. She tried everything (and I mean everything) to get me to help them… but something just didn’t seem right. I have my suspicions about people that eager. I do remember that they definitely would be outgunned and out classed in a real fight. What did that mean again? Lun Um Bra. I wish I could remember the planet’s name, but even that escapes my memory.”
From the combined efforts of Senton, Asa, Han, and Ji’Ar sneaking their way into the shipyard as last-minute replacement temp detailers, the trio feeds tidbits of information back to the Solace.
Han groaningly recognizes the name of a ship, Infinity, and its registered pilot, BoShek … the one who beat out his score on the Kessel Run. He’s pretty sure the guy cheated, but at the same time, he’s wanted by the Empire for shooting up some TIEs that surprised him at the end of the run.
There are several ships present which Raymus is familiar with from serving as a smuggler for Teemo. Most of those ships; however, are recent arrivals and are checking in for extended stays. It almost seems like a kind of homecoming.
Furthermore, several smaller single and dual operator starships seem to receive extra detailing and maintenance in preparation for an event of some kind, possibly a race.
Notable vessels in the yard:
- Crimson Dworph
- Infinity, BoShek’s vessel that beat Han Solo’s Kessel Run record
- Jewel of Straits
- Krayt’s Bane
- Mudder’s Milk
- Rim Reaver
- Saren 1TY
Dall manages to slice really deep and gain the identities of the suspicious detailing crew. They have a long line of dealings with various criminal syndicates and fringe groups, mostly for coin and profit, though always seeming to barely scrape by in the end. They have had their fair share of Imperial encounters and lost several ships during their time together … could be they’re looking for their next ship.
Bu Itlon, an Arcona spice dealer
Chedon De Soluga, a Duros pilot
Kay Lee, a Weequay engineer
Kaz Lo, a Zabrak tech specialist
Zuttu, a Toydarian information broker
Furthermore, there is talk in the yard regarding a recent hierarchy change due in part to the death of Teemo. Many of the household seem to be vying for power, and there is as yet no agreement. With all the uncertainty, the House seems ripe for being usurped or eliminated outright.
“Dall, could you scan communications in the area to see if you can intercept any transmissions by this other suspicious group?”
Dall looks up from his console. “ I’ve manage to slice into a couple of the communications channels. One is the security channel, they seem to be more distracted with some race going on. The other channel is the one the detailing crew is using, they seem to be opportunistic looters and have targeted a bunch ships including the Lox’s Legend. As we assumed correctly they are using the bin to store their ill gotten gains, which a refuse bot will take tonight. They plan to make their getaway by hijacking either the Mudder’s Milk or Jewel of Straits."
The Bothan pauses a moment before continuing.
“I also dug up some information on the ‘Lun Um Bra’, now that I have their name right. They seem to be a fringe organization, much like the Rebel Alliance, and they are interested in freedom from oppression. All of their traceable activities are through proxy groups and never from the same region of the Outer Rim, but their activity does not seem to venture much past the Expansion Rim. That’s if the sources can be trusted. A lot of myth and rumor. Who is really to say how large the group is or with whom they truly operate. For all I can tell, they could be a cover for some other group to throw off anyone trying to get close enough to figure them out.”
“Also I think another party that is present in the area, is interested specifically in the mysterious box that is on the ship… so stay vigilant…”
“Is there a way we can remotely disable the Mudder and Jewel of Straits so they can’t make their get-away?” Ardellian inquires, “Perhaps plant some evidence of their crimes on the way out to keep the local Hutt security teams busy?”
“Oh! one more thing," Dall announces, "Around the time the bot is supposed to pick up the bin, those ships will be marked as contaminated with Space Ebola… that should pretty much scuttle the cleaning crew’s plans for escape… and make them easy stooges for whatever dastardly plan we come up with. So what now? Grab the bin and hijack the ship?”
“Excellent, Dall. Ji’Ar, you and Asa grab the bin and roll it up onto the ship to Han and Senton, who will proceed with securing the ship.” the Captain orchestrates the plan, “Han get the ship ready for departure.”
Senton and Han enter the Lox’s legend for detailing, with the Cathar lowering the cargo lift to … “air out the cargo hold” … while Asa and Ji’Ar collect the “refuse bin”, making sure to secure the “spare bins”. Han starts up the vessel, awaiting the “all clear” for when the docking locks are released.
Asa collects a normal bin as Ji’Ar approachs the “refuse bin” with the hidden loot haul. He applies a remote slicer onto the nearby collection droid, then taps a signal on his comm to alert Dall that he can activate when ready.
“What’a ya thinka yah doin’?” a Toydarian in a detailing uniform flutters into their path and eyes them suspiciously, “Thisa is ma bin.”
Ji’Ar eyes the toydarian mustering his best tired expression. “The boss says get this moved and I get this moved..if you’re having a problem with that I suggest you take it up with the boss” pointing towards the most logical area an office might be located. Without missing a beat, if the toydarian is armed Ji’ar will try to disarm him physically if close should he look towards the feint.
The Toydarian flutters up real close, practically pushing his nose against Ji’Ar’s. “Thisa isn’t ova … buddy.”
As he starts to hover back … THUNK
“No time for small talk.” Asa nods to Ji’Ar as they secure the alien in the bin she brought over. They set it over by where the other bin was set. “That should hold him for a while.”
They stroll over to Lox’s Legend, spotting a shadow slipping on board. Wait. None of the detailing crew is wearing a duster. Who was that masked individual?! They continue a little faster, trying to look like they’re late for their shift task.
On board the Hutt yacht, Han calls back to Senton, informing him the ship is warmed up and ready for liftoff.
“Then you won’t mind if I take us out of here,” a helmeted and synthed voice inquires from behind.
Senton runs back to Han when he hears the other voice behind him to engage the possible threat.
“Easy there, kitty,” the helmeted and synthed individual states as Senton enters the corridor leading to the bridge. “This doesn’t have to get ugly. You’re heading off-world, and I could use a lift.” The glowing red eye sockets on the mask stare blankly underneath a wide-brimmed crimson hat. The alien’s posture is relaxed, yet alert beneath the worn russet leather overcoat, with a casual arms dangling near the bulges of a set of concealed, but easily withdrawn blaster pistols.
“What’s going on down there? Ji’Ar, Senton, Asa, Han…. somebody talk to me!” Ardellian sends through the comms.
“We got company.” Senton speaks into the comm, then turns to their … guest, “Who or what are you?” he says to the alien standing before him in the duster. His claws start to flex down by his side, preparing to strike.
The aliens shifts its center of gravity with a slight shift of the hips, “Do you lot have anyone in the control tower to release the docking locks? No? I do. We leave on my say so. Your best option is to cooperate.”
Ji’Ar strides up behind Senton and assesses their possible opponent. He acquiesces; however, keeping his eyes on every movement.
“Solace come in .. Solace come in .. do you read? This is Senton Blacktear reporting in from Lox’s Legend. Ground crew has brought aboard the container and secured it in place. Docking clamps are still attached. I repeat, we can not lift off, docking clamps are still in place. Some alien found her way into the cockpit of the ship and seems to have us at a disadvantage currently but says she has someone in the control tower to release the clamps. Hopefully we will be up and away shortly.”
The Captain turns to the Bothan, “Dall, do me a favor, please. Before we take off, run a perimeter scan to make sure we’re clear to lift off.”
Dall translates the scan, “The skies are clear, save for a distant storm, activity so far seems calm on the ground. oh, and there’s another heat signature on another mesa. Probably a ship of some sort.”
The Solace lifts off and begins to make its way to sub-orbit, watching for any surface to air attacks, focusing shields.
While lifting off and heading to sub-orbit, the heat signature detected from another mesa begins to follow. Dall jams signals, while sending another to the security tower.
Sa’fran climbs into the ventral turret to control the ion cannon. She takes a shot! The blast grazes the flank of the ship, including one of their engines. The ship begins to list and then careen to the ground. It crashes into a nearby supply depot.
An alert sounds, stating a quarantine is in effect in the yard. Then Dall can be heard laughing over the private channel.
Ji’Ar smiles and states, “Sounds like credits.”
The masked figure within Lox’s Legend gives the group a thumbs up. “All right fly boy, take us up.”
Han hears the clunk as the clamps release, activates lifting thrusters, adjusts the yaw, then punches the engines into full!
The Solace takes a direct tact over to where the Lox is lifting off, scanners searching for anything above or below them that needs to be dealt with.
“Han… head to ‘Miranda.’ Repeat, head to ‘Miranda.’ Do you copy?” Ardellian directs. Lox flashes forward illumination in confirmation.
“So lady, what’s your angle. Where do you want dropped?” Ji’Ar directs to the unidentified alien.
“Nowhere special. Just needed a quick exit. Thanks boys, and girl. Now to freshen up. By the way, nice work with that bin.”
“Who does this woman think she is cashing in on this repo? Is she the other repo agency that we heard about?” Senton chimes in about their … guest …“I saw a brief description of her on the bounty boards but no actual contracts for her or credits. Was wondering how much she is worth .. if anything at all currently. Seems almost like a bet kind of thing.”
“Is anyone else at least a bit curious what’s in the bin?”
Checking out the haul in the bin, the repo team finds it filled with little treasures … datapads of various sizes, recording and listening devices of various models, jewelry, trinkets, toys, currency holders and credit chips (though no direct currency), and even some clothing items. On the black market, they estimate all items combined would probably yield upwards to 15k credits, though they know that’s being optimistic.
Ji’Ar, still holding one of the datapads from the haul, looks up “Is that woman still freshening up?” he strides over to the fresher and places his ear against the door. “The shower is on, so maybe.”
She exits a little while later wearing the same gear, but at least generally cleaner. She’s still sporting the mask, so she’s keen not to show her face. She states she’s going to get some shut eye for the rest of the trip and picks one of the suites, which she locks behind her.
Lox’s Legend suddenly shudders and exits hyperspace prematurely, followed soon thereafter by bangs and thuds against the hull. Han calls back saying they must have miscalculated and entered an uncharted asteroid field. A moment later he adds that they’re not alone, that it looks like a veritable floating starship graveyard out in the black. At least the Solace is here, too …
“Dall, scan for hostiles.”
“Beginning evasive maneuvers.” Ardellian leaps into the bridge seat and grabs the joystick. “Han, what’s your status?”
“uh oh .. any hostiles out there Han?” Senton calls to the pilot.
“I’ll go find out.” Ji’Ar heads to the cockpit to see the proximity of the asteroids nearest the ship. “Whats the plan fellas? Let’s get out of here quickly, is my vote”
On board the Hutt Yacht, Senton and Asa strap in for the bumpy ride. The stranger exits the suite, only to navigate to the docking tube. “Thanks for the lift, but this is my stop.” She enters the decompression section and ejects herself into space.
Han opens a channel to the Solace, “Operations are fine, but we’ve got a bogey on our tail and no blasters. I’m entering the debris field to shake ‘em off. Ji’Ar, strap in and monitor those bogeys. We’ll push through to the other side and engage the hyperdrive!”
Dall detects several other active ships in the region, and one of them is bearing on the location of Lox’s Legend. Raymus easily avoids chase by two straighter class ships, weaving the Solace on a course through the wreckage. Sa’fran attempts to blast them with the ion turret; however, she is unable to lock on to either target, each exhibiting better maneuverability than her aim.
Dall detects a large capital ship listing through the region, and it still has residual heat. From the emissions, the Bothan believes it has been used as an impromptu space station rather than a recently attacked ship. During a barrel roll maneuver alongside the vessel, he observes a logo or a name … Lun Umbra …
“Dall, help Sa’fran by hopping in the dorsal turret. Let’s take out that capital ship first. I’ll maneuver into position to target the bridge and then try to take out the bridge windows with my cannons… just like we always do. Use the ion cannon to target their systems. Perhaps we can take two chances at disabling it and then we’ll take on those two smaller ships.”
“Han, time to be a leaf on the wind until we can get these bogeys off you.”
Senton hops into the co-pilot seat to assist Han with piloting, and in the process jokes about how this might end up being a real short trip.
More starfighter class ships engage in the chase, seemingly from the debris field itself; however, despite their size and maneuverability, the Solace presents the more capable pilot. Ardellian leads the chase into and literally through a series of listing and ruined ships, all while attempting to lock a solid shot upon the typical bridge location of the capital ship emanating residual heat. All of the laser blasts from the forward F-Ler cockpit graze the hull, barely delivering any damage and certainly nothing breaching the armor plating, though several small defense blasters that activate are destroyed by the strafing maneuver.
Dall hops into the dorsal blaster turret to take pot shots at the corralling starfighters, while Sa’fran continues her attempts with the ion turret below. Finally one of the ion blasts strikes one of the starfighters, which veers off-course, forcing two others to engage in evasive maneuvers and break off the pursuit.
Meanwhile, two starfighters accelerate to flank Lox’s Legend with strafing fire along the hull, and moments later what appears to be a chunk of debris breaks off from Hutt yacht.
Suddenly a small asteroid changes course, drifting at first, then hurtling into a drifting ship, which then slowly begins a yaw and pitch rotation away from the path of the Lox and Solace.
Han, with Senton assisting navigation, follows Raymus into a twin spiral maneuver, increasing evasion and potentially trapping aggressors between the engaged vessels. Ji’Ar asserts his will upon small debris along their trajectory, intent on pushing the obstacles out of their path. Raymus assists with the FLer’s forward blasters. Dall and Sa’fran continue their support on the turrets, blasting at pursuing starfighters.
The Lox and Solace bank hard to avoid several large ruined vessels. The ion cannon hits one ship, causing its inertia to propel the craft to crash into the hulk. Dall blasts another ship to bits, but three more dart through the blaze in pursuit!
The two scoundrels coordinate a crossover maneuver that lines up the followers for a destructive end. The turrets swivel to ensure the space in clear. With the way clear, the vessels break through to clear space. Ji’Ar exhales roughly, closes his eyes, and begins to snore. The two ships engage their hyperdrives!
“Yes! We did it! We did it! Yahooo,” Senton exclaims joyfully.
“Dont celebrate too soon,” Dall warns, “That’s a lot of effort to expend for a simple repo job. Something else is going on”
“ZzZzz…” ::Pulls his clothing closer to his neck:: “zzzzzZzz” a faint smile of victory adorns Ji’Ar’s face quickly followed by a hint of drool.
Arriving at the designated coordinates, Miranda station looks beautiful cast against the colorful gaseous nebula known as Re’Var. A banking clan vessel is docked at one of the pylons. Both vessels are hailed and instructed to switch to thrusters and allow guidance via tractor beam.
“Be ready for trouble. Initiating docking procedures. Dall, standby on the Ion Cannon. Han, you go first and see if you can spot anything. Senton, keep a keen eye out. If your senses tell you something’s wrong, get out of there.”
The banking clan ship looms large as the ships are tractored into the hangar. Emblazoned upon the hull is the name Devils Due. Upon the deck of immense hangar rest the Silver Morning, Delight Tah’Guva, and at least a dozen other vessels of various makeup. The Lox’s Legend is guided to rest next to the other two collected by the crew of the Solace, while Ardellian’s ship is set near a gathering of Muun with datapads. Attendants are seen inspecting each vessel, calling out reports to an aid, who inputs the information into their own datapad.
“Attention! Attention! Attention!” one of the Muuns calls out, his voice reverberating throughout the hangar via the intercom speakers. “Gather at the dias to receive compensation for services rendered!”
The crew of the Solace and the Lox’s Legend repo team converge and approach the indicated dias. Asa waves the others on, instead transporting the bin from the Hutt ship to the Captain’s freighter. En route they observe several other groups following suit. Each group varies in its complement of species.
“Greetings and good dealings. Jobs well done, indeed, and on behalf of the CREDITORS, we thank you for delivering what was owed.” the pale Muun speaks again, this time utilizing a localized voice enhancer, “Bursar Jinn Oran is how you all should acknowledge me, for I am in charge of each and every one of your transactions today. You can count on me for a fair wage for services rendered. Should your services be deemed profitable, and you agree to continue your services, an account manager present will be assigned to draft the contract. Now then, does anyone have any questions?”
Everyone looks around not wanting to be the first to speak up, and before a brash voice fills the silence, Oran continues, “Good. Each ship delivered is undergoing a thorough inspection to ascertain its current asset value, compared to new value and cross-referenced with current market value. Based upon this criterion, each responsible team will receive a wage. Prior to distribution of credits, each team may converse in private to determine allocation of payment. Inspection will be complete in half an hour. Please enjoy our hospitality.”
With that, the bursar gestures to a long table behind the nearest attendants. Servers begin lifting lids and tapping canisters, revealing a buffet of mouth-watering sustenance. Several teams descend upon the lavish provisions, not even bothering to select a plate or picking up eating utensils.
Ardellian signals the crew back to the ship, instead of partaking in the ravenous behavior. Dall slinks off to check on something.
“Now that we’re alone, I recognized some of those guys from the other repo teams.” he lets the others settle into the lounge.
“The green hued Duros is a smuggler named Drazden Mox and one of the Sullustans is named Treno Nung. Both of them stood out to me from the crowd.”
“Drazden had worked for Teemo on a few occasions, but he always changed up his crew for each job, never becoming close with anyone for longer than a haul. One of those jobs prior to me acquiring the Solace I worked with the Duros. He was cautious and deliberate with the operation; however, his temper flared when things didn’t follow the plan.
“Treno was another story. We were competitors for a few tasks set upon Teemo. We were both directed to deliver supplies without question to a series of drop locations. The Sullustan liked to play games, which was evident in the sabotage of my ship early on. His antics were more of an annoyance, though, not enough to keep me out of the job. I came in second, which bothered me, though Teemo seemed amused by the whole affair.
“So what’s in common, at least, is Teemo had something on them most like. Probably a safe assessment that most gathered here, or at least those in charge of the crews, are indebted to the Hutt in some way.”
Dall and Sa’fran return once the chime sounds, signalling completion of the inspection, her arm slipped in with his. She sports a handkerchief to clean her hands. She laughs at a jest from the Bothan in her direction.
“Dall! You dirty dog!” Ji’Ar says with mock accusation.
“Where have you two been?” Raymus directs at Dall and Sa’fran, “We’ve been hailing you on the comm link.”
In response to Raymus’ query to Dall and Sa’fran and not responding to their hail, to the group out of earshot of the attendants, the Bothan states, “Safran was with me. We were investigating the box everyone has seemed to have forgotten about. Radio silence was necessary. Unfortunately the contents were already pillaged.”
“Attention! Attention! Attention!” Jinn calls the teams together as a soothing chime sounds. “Inspection complete and wages estimated. Each team will receive a calculator for discussing wage distribution. Please follow your assigned steward.”
The attendants spread amongst the teams, distributing a basic datapad, provide instructing to review the wage, and adjust values to team members. Each steward concludes the demonstration by escorting their team to a private discussion chamber down a hallway adjacent to the hangar bay.
Proceeding down the hallway, a few teams funnel into the designated rooms and shut the door. Muffled blaster fire sound moments later. Two other groups halt their entry.
The door opens again. Two step out, a Nikto and a Zabrak. “We have agreed. Fifty-Fifty. Now pay up!”
“Clean up in chamber two!” Cleaning droids drop down from a portal in the ceiling, enter the chamber, and begin purging the room.
“Payment Games,” your steward confides, “Not everyone agrees to the terms. Keep it clean.”
The crew of the Solace enters their chamber, closes the door, and sets the calculator on the table in the middle of the room. The pad first reads each member of the crew: Asa Gildstripes Blacktear. Dall Oktra’lon. Han Solo. Ji’Ar Wyn. Raymus Ardellian. Sa’fran Ta’lou. Senton Blacktear. Then the pad reads the total wage: 117,005, calculated to be 16,715 each.
“Almost 17,000! This could really save my neck.” Han practically whistles at the amount.
“Slow down there, cow poke. We split the credits, but the ship gets one share for repairs and maintenance. It doesn’t keep itself up. 14,625 each to the crew, and one cut balance to the ship.”
Han relents to the lesser value and acknowledges the logic. Without further contestation of the arrangement, the eight slot is added for the Solace, and the wage of 117,000cr split evenly amongst all. The attendant reviews the arrangement, applies his thumb to the scanner, and locks in the payment.
“Congratulations, team Solace.” he nods once and continues, “While some of you still have debts to repay to Teemo the Hutt’s account, as a crew you have the unique opportunity to continue receiving assignments from the CREDITORs with notably more significant profit. Of course a percentage will be subtracted towards the debts.”
He allows a moment for the information to sink in and then continues, “Do you wish to proceed or be released as freelancers?”
“Seems we could use some credits and something to do. What have you got for us?” Ardellian answers for the crew.