Galaxy In Flames

Cat-itude

With my friends being marched off to the cells and I being marched away to talk to Rossi, I had no idea what would befall our fate in the next 12 hours. I certainly didn’t expect the lack of support I would get while risking my life. But let me elaborate what really went down from my point of view, and remember, I’m pretty damn tall. I get a good overall view of what’s going down in my humble opinion.

In Rossi’s quarters, he tried and of course failed at trying to convince me that his actions were motivated by selfless reasons. Do I still love him? We had a childhood together that grew into love as we matured. Of course I still do. But can I forgive his actions? No. Not ever. Forgiveness is a hard thing for a Togo.

Rossi was instrumental in the capture of an entire village of Togorians including our Elder’s daughter and he sold them all into slavery to fund his scheme that he believes will save our planet.

He argues that we need to bring our planet into the present with technology and weaponry, to make ourselves respected and not laughed at for our “backward” ways. This not only does not convince me, it makes me sickened that my own husband would be so ashamed of our people’s culture and traditions.

I believe he still had hopes to turn my mind around even as he ordered me taken to the cells, that is, until I dove for the gun I noticed across the room. I fired off the pistol…click click… nothing. I threw it at his smug face and was rewarded with the sound of the metal making contact at least on his arm.

Below in the cells, Poncho was harassing one of the guards, all Mandolorians. There were two I believe. They march me in and I realize this may be my one chance to create enough chaos to set my friends and me free so I make use of the choke-point made by the doorway and make a grab for the gun. I have it! I am shot. But still, I have a weapons and I shoot back!

Our “Jedi” uses his force powers to hold the door to the jails closed, something about not wanting to use guns. Apparently Jedi are pacifists. I am shot a total of three times and still no help from anyone who might have been able to smuggle weapons in with them, you know, like perhaps a lightsaber? A pistol? A grenade? But nooooooo. I am shot three times for nothing so I give up and go into my cell with my head down. So disappointed in my comrades. The disappointment. I am awash with it.

A few moments later, our new pilot flitters out of his cell. He has escaped somehow! I have a moment of hope, just a moment, but then I just shake my head and walk away from the door expecting nothing is going to raise the courage of my comrades into action, right? If my taking three shots to my person isn’t enough to raise up their courage what is?

L’hrequ uses his force powers and pulls a gun from a guard’s hand. Wait, WHAT? He couldn’t have done that when I was getting SHOT! I got shot trying to create chaos to save our group and he could have pulled one of the guns from the guards?!?

Now I am more than disappointed in our pacifist Jedi. I start to reconsider that bounty. From this moment on, L’hrequ will only be Larry to me. He let me get shot when he could have pulled that gun.

I will…never…ever…forget…

He makes the weapon useless and gives it back to the guard. Winter shoots through her bars with a pistol but misses. Wait..she has a weapon too? She didn’t shoot when I was getting shot? So much disappoint.

Larry pulls the gun from the second guard! I am now insulted twice. Still I am not cheered by this, I am so full of disappointment in the one I thought was my friend. I flick my tail.

Poncho flitters to my door and hacks the lock. Ahhh, my new, TRUE friend has freed me. I POUNCE on a guard, leaping onto him with my claws extended. By the second swipe of my claws, the guard is dead.

Larry finally finds his gonads and ignites his lightsaber, using his weapon…as a cutting torch to kill a guard and get everyone out of their cells.

It is decided that Winter and her brother as the only humans will fit nicely into the Mandolorian armor in case we are questioned in our escape.

We are about to leave the jail when we hear a female voice over the intercom speaker, asking if we Troublemakers would like some help getting the main jail door open. Of course we say yes, despite our suspicions that this may be a trap.

The door is opened, the hallway is clear. We go down to the hall and have to make a choice, left or right. The female voice tells us that to the right is our gear, to the left is the landing bay. We choose the right. At the end of the hall we have the choice of again, left or right.

Opening the door we see two men behind a desk, one dressed as an officer, both casual in their stance. I blast one with the carbine rifle I had taken from our jailers (you remember, the one that Larry could have pulled from the jailers hands to shoot and defend me with earlier when I was getting shot, right?)

I flick my tail.

The officer flies backwards in his chair with the force of my blast. MoFo blasts the other one, then after realizing it is set on kill, his programming to not hurt sentients forces him to reset the weapon to stun. I hadn’t thought about that particular issue with MoFo before and for an instant wonder if we can adjust his program a bit more like the HK-47 Assassin models. That instant is gone as we are busy gearing ourselves up and moving on again with our escape.

Larry has done his part and the other guard is down but still he is un-forgiven by me. I turn my back to him. I flick my tail.

We head back down the way we had come, now in the direction of the landing bay. The female voice warns us that many warriors are coming from that direction so we head back down the hall and instead of going right to the room where our gear was in, we go left and enter an elevator. It stops before making it’s destination. Was it MoFo who hacked it panel and got it running again?

Two floors down, the elevator opens up to darkened hallways. MoFo and I put on our goggles to better see. We pass several doors until we find the one the “Voice” leads us to and find it opens up into a warehouse which is a tad better lit than the hallways.

Halfway through the warehouse the trap is sprung. Heavy metal doors open to the left and right of us. I climb atop a crate as does Pax and her brother. MoFo runs towards the big bulky creature that has come through one of the doors and from inside his chassis he pulls a grenade and lobs it at the beast, injuring it a great deal!

To support my friend who runs into danger (after giving Larry a dirty look and flicking my tail in contempt) I USE MY WEAPON and shoot the beast that MoFo is attacking. Larry decides this is a worthy enough fight to break out his gonads and finishes off the bulky beast.

The second creature, agile and spindly with six deadly razor sharp appendages attacks Winter Pax! The others seem surprised that Asher does well with the weapon he is using in defense of his sister though I expect it is out of jealousy because Asher is so pretty.

As we all turn our attention to saving Pax, we are horrified when the creature uses it’s proboscis to insert something into Winter Pax’s body! Gaawwwwdddd NO!

We bring the monster down and MoFo does a quick bit of triage. I catch Larry’s eye and turn my back to him again with a flick of my tail. MoFo determines that he cannot remove the thing now without the equipment needed to do so safely, and that the object is worming it’s way towards her heart. We have 24 hours to remove it or Winter Pax will die!

The Voice directs us to another elevator and we move from there to the final door. We are outside, on a narrow rocky path on the ledge of a cliff overlooking a great forest much like Togoria. We decide to tie off with each other in case one of us slips. I lead the way ahead and make it to a safe spot. The others follow but not before Pax slips. Asher pulls at his rope to save her and calls for assistance in pulling her back up which is done easily enough.

Now we are faced with a force-field., which magically drops as we near it. Ahhh, our Voice I expect. We had made a deal with her, that she would continue to help us if we promise to take her with us, a deal easy enough to make and she did not fail us (I turn my back on Larry again and flick my tail.)

With the force-field down, MoFo sends in his little spider in to scope out what foes may be between us and our entrance into the ship on the field, the same ship that brought us here. There are two guards.

MoFo bravely runs to the guards and tosses a grenade at them. I shoot, miss, and run into the ship. Pax shoots, hits, and runs into the ship. Asher and Mofo shoot, Larry shoots (now he is okay with guns, I bite back a hiss and flick my tail) and we all are now in the ship and hit the controls to close the ramp.

Quickly MoFo launches to the cockpit and makes to start up the systems. Password….password…..Mofo tries to hack the system and fails.

The Voice, no longer disembodied and speaking to us from an intercom, speaks up with a drawl. “I can help you with that.”

MoFo punches in the password, fires up the ship, and we are off!!!!

View
Poncho's Logs 1.3 (and the Un-logged script)
Mission: Rescue Asher From Hell Part II

…Initializing …

Password: * * * * *

…Processing…

… Scanning Fingerprint…

… Identity Confirmed…

Welcome Poncho :)

Creating New Folder: The Mission…

→ Report: Day 5- [Enter Date Here] | 1400 -[Enter Time Here]

I feel I should start this off by noticing the stress of the decision to undergo the initiation trials or somehow find another way was getting to us all. Pand’Ora seemed especially bothered by the whole situation, I’m assuming being this close to Rossi, but still stuck playing his way wasn’t to her liking. Though, to be fair it wasn’t to my liking either. We all reconvened again to discuss what we had discovered as well as where to go next.

Discussion began over discussing whether or not to get Brand more involved in our investigations. L’hrequ felt that we shouldn’t return so soon after being sent out or else it make us look like fools. I wasn’t sure what time had to do with the information we were able to obtain (since that is apparently what the Truthseeker wanted us to do), but L’hrequ seemed assured we didn’t have it yet. Winter agreed, but felt that Brand would have to be alerted eventually, if we ever planned to get off this planet with the Silver Bucket. Not that I wanted to see that sour face again, but I did feel that informing Brand of Deekin’s scouting would at least make it appear we were working with him. And, worse come to worse, if we had to do some nasty tasks to get into this gang, we could, perhaps, have some kind of royal permission to do the deeds unheeded. Not that there is much law, but most people here don’t like the Ganathians, I suspected that targets for loyalty missions may, somehow, negatively impact the people of this planet. Mo said that we should give him the fungus treatment, leave Brand in the dark and feed him…well I’m sure you can fill in the blank there. Though I could really go for some home-grown fungus right now.

Still, the talk of Brand, I feel, was just a way to buy us time from the real decision, should we undergo the initiation. Winter opened it up, in the most shocking of ways! Winter presented her plan as she saw it. Step 1: We undergo the initiation, Step 2: We get to Rossi, Step 3: Winter would torture Rossi, make him suffer, and then Pand’Ora would kill him. Pand’Ora was enthusiastic with that plan, but, I’ve got to be honest I was shocked. I tried to pull away from such plans, by bringing up that going through Deekin was going to be handing all the cards to Rossi, we would have no room to maneuver. Winter started saying something about not liking something, but her train of thought seemed to fade. I suggested we could try to get back to our ship, its sensors could help us sweep the area for any strange activity, possibly pinpointing Rossi’s gang’s works. Though the possibility of that seemed unlikely, and no one really jumped on it, which, unfortunately, kind of took my experience out of the situation.

When presenting the plans, Winter suggested that we could investigate possibly two things, one being a way to get to Rossi without going through this test at all or to just get more information on what this test would be like. L’hrequ was assertive that we had already investigated what the expectations of the test, either you die or you are never seen again! Pand’Ora also presented that those were the reasons why no one else would know what there is to expect. L’hrequ continued, of course, to get to the morbid details of how we would die from the initiation, being burned or diced into pieces, but regardless, stating again, that we would be dead (in this scenario) either way. I interrupted mentioning that while no one is ever seen again (well, unless they died) we do know at least the last place they are seen and that is in the Cantina. So wherever Rossi is, the Cantina must lead there somehow. L’hrequ did say that was a true point, and said that we did have the option to sneak into the tavern at night and looking for the way down. Winter liked the plan formulating, but questioned how we would get to back of the tavern to look around. I mentioned that the Kubaz probably knew how to get all around the city, seeing as he was able to disappear in the alleyway, perhaps he would know a way. L’hrequ, looking at our best guess of time on this planet, suggested that we were a bit hurried. I piped in that we are not really in a hurry, as we are stuck here either way, and L’hrequ said that was what he meant to say. So then, L’hrequ suggested that perhaps we should wait until nightfall and see what changes. Though, since this tavern also served as an inn, the place probably isn’t going to close. Winter also brought up that we got rather little information from the populace, L’hrequ believes it could be because the populace is fearful. So we had opportunities around us.

L’hrequ decided to hang around the tavern to “listen” to what goes on within. Pand’Ora mentioned she would stay as well, helping keep an eye on things (and seemingly itching for a brawl). Winter, however, decided that she would rather enjoy going shopping, though seemed to have low expectations on what she would find. Though with her primary goal being information gathering, Winter figured it could still be a profitable venture. Mo pulled out a weird remote thing and that seemed to preoccupy most of his time. From what I gather, he has some kind of remote control droid of some sort he was utilizing as a camera that he set up in the back of the Stranded Cantina. I had wanted to investigate the alleyway where the Kubaz had disappeared, and the surrounding area, but Winter was to valuable at this time (well, she was the one most at risk) so I decided to go with her instead. Besides, since I don’t seem to have any other applicable skills for this group, I could at least help with lowering some prices. Pand’Ora seemed nervous about Winter leaving, but Winter told her that I was with her and it was going to be OK. While Winter’s confidence in me is pleasant, the look Pand’Ora gave me when she asked if I could protect Winter was spine-tingling. I doubted anything was going to happen, so I told Pand’Ora I could, though I really was hoping nothing would happen now. Not just for keeping Winter and I safe, but also I didn’t want to fail and see what Pand’Ora would do should something happen to Winter.

So Winter and I perused the many shops scattered around the Foreign Quarter of the city, and it would appear Winter’s expectations on finding fashionable wears was on point. Most everything being offered was ten or more years dated. The shops were all very welcoming, at the very least, I suppose you have to make the most of being stuck on this backwater planet. In addition to clothing shops, we came across another cantina (only this one appeared focused on more “wealthy” clientele) and a junk dealer selling all sorts of things, included some ship parts. Winter, uninspired from the clothing options, seemed more focused on the people, gauging social status as well as inquiring about, perhaps, a black market working within the Foreign Quarter. Not that I wanted to flaunt my past, but I did offer to help her utilizing what I’ve learned form being in a gang before, which seemed to help at least a little (which makes sense, I wasn’t too deep into the structure of Viper’s gang). In the end, Winter decided to approach two of the, well what appeared to be, prostitutes to see if they had any more knowledge on the seedy underbelly of this place. One of them was a Human who refused to speak to us, for some reason, but the Twi’lek woman seemed to be a bit steamed about something and was more than willing to have someone to talk to. She told us that the underworld does exist and all its machinations are lead out of the Stranded Cantina. And everyone within, as far as this Twi’lek is concerned, are scoundrels and we could tell that she hates not getting paid for her “services.” Then things began to get a bit shocking, Winter asked how much the Twi’lek charges for a standard “trick” (is that what those are called?). The Twi’lek looked Winter up and down, and said, for her, it would be about 50 credits. To which, Winter then pulled out a credit stick worth 100 credits and handed it over. I’m pretty sure my face turned a bright red, and my jaw dropped. Was Winter really doing this?

In the end, Winter was mostly using the money to help assuage more information from the Twi’lek. Winter discovered that there aren’t any allegiances to a pimp or organization. The Twi’lek told Winter that the few working girls serving on Ganath are not organized in that sense. However, the Twi’lek did say that they do give discounts to certain people. The discounts be qualified as the right thing to do. When Winter inquired about the similarities between those that receive the discounts, she was told that they were all ruffians and all work out of the Stranded Cantina, “all scruffy looking nerf-herders” in her words. The twi’lek also highlighted her irritation when the discount becomes “free”and how she needed to speak to Markus about that. Additionally, the twi’lek told us that Deekin promised her he would investigate the “free rides” and she said that she trusts him (seems Deekin has some footing here as well). Winter agreed that not paying for the services was disrespectful. At this point, the human that was with the twi’lek told the twi’lek “Birdie you’ve said enough. We’re going to get in trouble,” and I really didn’t want them to receive any backlash for Birdie’s assistance. However, Birdie was confident that she wouldn’t get in trouble, and didn’t even care. Winter mentioned that she appreciated Birdie’s sass. Birdie did ask Winter if she was planning on entering the her career field, to which Winter declined. Winter instead stated that she, too, was having trouble with those within the Cantina, and asked if it was being run by anyone. To which Birdie said its that Bothan guy, Deekin, “he may not look like it, but he runs the place! No matter what anyone else says, he really is the final word in this place. He tries to play it straight and narrow, most of the time. But, he has desires just like any other man.” Winter asked if there had been any other group that had tried to shift the balance of power within the city, to which Birdie said no. However, Birdie did inform us that there was a group of spacers that came in about a year ago, but she thinks they are still in the Cantina. Birdie believed that she still sees them sometimes, particularly a Kalleran, she didn’t remember his name, but said that he stands out because he is quiet and moody (which she apparently finds sexy). Though, Birdie did say that this Kalleran is very kind, the few times she had spoken to him the Kalleran had been very polite. This Kalleran was part of those spacers that came in about a year ago, and they disappeared for a day or two, but then they came back and just stay in the Cantina as part of Deekin’s group, Birdie guessed. Birdie wasn’t too sure what the group does, besides hanging out and being lazy (accented by an epic eyeroll). Birdie continued saying that they are just like men and don’t work at all, but looked at me and said no offense. Though, I told her that my own father would agree to my “laziness” as well and Birdie said that my father sounded like a smart man (depends on your point of view I guess). Birdie hoped that my father was not trapped on this rock as well, to which I could assuage her by telling her my father wouldn’t be caught dead here…well unless there was money to be made. Winter mentioned that it is probably better than we thought, but I think that being trapped “is” a hell in itself. Winter did bring up the point that some people never leave their planets and don’t feel trapped, but the choice is what is important. After all, I left Toydaria, which is probably the best planet in the galaxy.

I asked Birdie about the Kubaz, to which she told us that there were a few of them. They seem to just watch on the street, creepy like, and sometimes get together and speak in their “wabble wabble” language. I asked if they ever congregated or hung out in a particular place, Birdie said that had seen one leave the Cantina before, but otherwise they just watch. At this point, Winter introduces herself much more formally, and asks for Birdie’s name as well. To which we are told that Birdie’s name is actually Lucinda. Winter, then asked Lucinda about Rossi (without using his name) mentioning that we know someone supposed to be high up in the boss ranks, but he is never here in the Foreign Quarter. Winter mentioned the person we are looking for was a Togorian, which Lucinda knew about, and that we wanted to meet him, but apparently there is a big initiation procedure we have to go through to do so. Winter asked Lucinda if she had heard anything about that. Lucinda answered, strangely, that she didn’t know any fellow named Rossi (even saying “is that what you said his name was,” but we never mentioned his name), but that she had heard of some sort of initiation thing/boys club were people can go in to try to join Deekin’s group. Lucinda always assumed it was some sort of drinking contest or something. Winter mentioned, fishing for an answer to the contrary, that we had hoped to see Rossi without undergoing such festivities, but that it was appearing that we had little choice. Lucinda told us that had Rossi, being a Togorian, had ever been in the Foreign Quarter she would remember him, but up to this point she has never seen him. Winter told Lucinda that we had brought a Togorian with us, which seemed to get Lucinda excited (at least until Lucinda discovered the Togorian was a she), and that she is an impressive creature (strange way to describe someone, but…). Lucinda seemed worried that this Togorian would want to enter the business, but was glad to hear that she was not going to (or at least it was unlikely since the Togorian was married. Lucinda congratulated her, but I mentioned that the marriage probably wasn’t going to last long as it was a somewhat toxic relationship. After all that, Winter thanked Lucinda for her candidness. Lucinda told us we were welcome, but asked if we were sure that was all we wanted for the 100 credits Winter had given her, to which Winter told her that it was. This made Lucinda smile, and she thanked Winter for being so kind. I wished Lucinda luck in her endeavors, and she thanked me and told me I was cute with my little wings. I blushed, though I doubted I was her type. Winter said we don’t really know what Twi’leks want since they seem to be all over….um never mind, I think I’ll leave this part out. Though it was a somewhat nice complement, I suppose. I blushed again. As we left, Lucinda wished us a nice day (to which we wished her the same) before sashaying back to her position.

I don’t know what happened for L’hrequ, Mo, and Pand’Ora at the Stranded Cantina, but they were all sitting together when Winter and I returned. Apparently, L’hrequ is quite the people watcher (sorta weird pastime) and figured out a bunch of information on the barkeeps, like their names being Jondar (the human barkeep) and Kwilcan (the Weequay), all by just watching them. I believe I even caught him practicing their voices. Strange. L’hrequ really wanted to wait until around Midnight to instigate his plan, so everyone decided to just hang out until then. I found myself getting to agitated from waiting, so I told everyone I was going out and went on a hunt for the Kubaz. Pand’Ora was real sweet and brought me food buckets here and there which I really appreciated. Though, I had little luck finding any of my marks, though I did talk to some nice people.

While I was gone, around 2000 hours Deekin returned to the bar and approached the group. I don’t have all the details, but they apparently had quite a talk. Deekin was fishing for them to undergo the initiation, and tried to lead the conversation in that direction. Winter told him that the group was trying to get a feel for the place, but Deekin said that they should have gotten plenty. Not much to sell, as there are not much of them (outsiders to Ganath). And, if it wasn’t for Emperor Brand, the Ganathians would probably had killed all the outsiders. Mo I hear asked if Brand was seen much, but Deekin said only when he first arrived. They discussed the armor of Brand and legends of him being a comet. Mo asked why Rossi uses this Cantina, and Deekin said that they are all people-people and good at recruiting good members. I guess L’hrequ grabbed Deekin as he was about to leave to investigate what happens if we made the cut, but other than “meeting Rossi” he didn’t get anymore information. Apparently Rossi would have some kind of work for us based on our skill set and Rossi’s needs. When Winter and L’hrequ asked where Rossi takes the gang members he uses, Deekin said he didn’t know, but that Rossi could be up to no good anywhere (given the Ganathian’s low level of technology). L’hrequ mentioned something about Deekin being “good” at not knowing things, and Deekin said he doesn’t want to make himself too important. Though, when L’hrequ did ask if Deekin ever leaves the planet, Deekin said no, but if Rossi is leaving he is either really sneaky (as there are satellites or something looking for ships trying to leave), or (whispering) Rossi has someone on the inside. Regarldess, Deekin somehow managed to convince the group to undergo the tests, as I got a call on my comm asking me if I wanted to join them. I really didn’t want to, I felt uncomfortable going through Rossi’s group. However, I was assigned to help this group, so I had little choice. Winter did say that she would never leave me behind, which was sweet, even if it involved joining another gang.

So I returned as L’hrequ approached Deekin and told him that we were ready for the initiation (though I was sure I’d have nothing really to contribute….per usual). Deekin then rose, pulling out a long knife and began to bang on his glass really loud. Calling everyone to attention, saying that there were new contestants which made everyone in the Cantina cheer and get excited. The Initiation is a set of tests, of which there are four. The first was to take place outside, in case anything goes wrong, and we were lead through a series of doors and hallways. As we walked, Winter applied her darkest shade of lipstick and a crowd began to follow us behind murmuring about the upcoming test. Going through the hallway, it eventually emptied out to the back alley where the crowd dispersed to the left and right sides of the wall, not going into the center of the alley. Deekin, like the crowd, seemed particularly happy and excited and the crowd even began to make bets. I’m pretty sure someone was betting I would get smooched by the end of the first round. Though, soon the crowd went quiet as Deekin introduced the first test, the Test of Sight. Apparently, it was the easiest test, and Deekin asked for a volunteer from our group mentioning it should be someone gifted with a rifle. I shook my head, but the rest of the group all turned to Pand’Ora who seemed eager to play. Deekin said he wasn’t surprised, but then called her Lady Kitten, seemed inappropriate to me. At the same time, the crowd called for a man named Beedo and told him to head down the alley and hold up the bottle of swill he was drinking. This Beedo fellow seemed like a drunkard, who willing lifted the target, as Deekin informed us that the goal was to shoot the bottle out of Beedo’s hand (the distance was about fifty meters and down the dark alley). Pand’Ora took her time, as we waited. However, as she took the shot, I saw Deekin elbow into her shooting arm pushing the blast just enough to make Pand’Ora accidentally hit Beedo’s hand instead, blasting some of the drunkards fingers off (two) and the bottle falls from his hand and lands on the ground unbroken. Pand’Ora immediately turned and punched Deekin in the face. The crowd found it exciting, as Deekin grabbed his face and cried out that it was an accident (As if) and that Pand’Ora would get a second shot. When Pand’Ora threaten him, Deekin said that he would stand far away (out of punch range). In the meantime, Mo dashed down the alley towards Beedo and when he arrived Mo began gathering the lost fingers and operating on Beedo to help remedy the man’s wounds. Mo’s kindness surprising me yet again. As far as I could tell from seeing Beedo later, the lost fingers were all patched back up and would eventually heal, good job Mo!

L’hrequ moved himself between Deekin and Pand’Ora asking what happened, when Pand’Ora explained it, L’hrequ turned to question Deekin if it was true. However, Pand’Ora asked if L’hrequ could honestly believe that she would miss that shot, mentioning how many people he had seen her kill with that shot, to which L’hrequ did mention that it did take Pand’Ora forever to take the shot before continue questioning Deekin. Deekin continued to say it was an accident, to which I constantly mentioned it wasn’t, but L’hrequ told Deekin that we should call that shot good (particularly with the tampering), but Deekin said the only other option was to withdraw. L’hrequ asked if the games would continue like this, cheating, but Deekin said it would only be cheating if he said we had failed. That answer didn’t appease L’hrequ, mentioning Beedo’s lost fingers, but Deekin merely brushed it off (a point that made L’hrequ threaten to take Deekin’s fingers if he did such an act again). Deekin called for Beedo to set it up again (and calling us complainers), but Beedo’s courage was waning. Fortunately for Beedo, however, Mo stepped up and placed the bottle on top of his head, sending the crowd into coos of oohs and ahs! L’hrequ said something about it being a good deal as losing a droid isn’t like losing a life, which I chastised him for. That was Mo up there! Then L’hrequ called me Nacho….what? Sancho now Nacho, does L’hrequ even know my name? Or was he insulting my eating habits…though speaking of eating nachos would have been really good at the time. Anyways, L’hrequ then asked Winter and I to surround Pand’Ora to keep any more accidents from happening. L’hrequ even pulled out his pistol and held it to his chest (to which raised some eyebrows) and Deekin told L’hrequ to put it away, looking pretty distraught. L’hrequ stood unflinching mentioning that were he comes from there is no cheating. As Deekin stood agape, calling L’hrequ a tough one, Winter said that L’hrequ was the nicest one among us. A point I had to deny, was I missing something? Still, Pand’Ora set up her shot again. With no hesitation, even with Mo as the bottle bearer, Pand’Ora blasted the bottle off of Mo’s head without leaving a drop on him. Mo pretended to drop, but the stood up (messing with the crowd). With the trial completed the crowd seemed excited for our victory. Deekin congratulated the Pand’Ora, asking if we could all shoot that good. Of course L’hrequ didn’t even leave him to his imagination and said no. Mo returned to us as the crowd rushed up to congratulate us…however, this seemed to just be an introduction for the second Trial.

Deekin once again said that the shot was amazing, and even congratulated the first one in which would have been a success if it were not for his “accident.” Mo’s standing in even made Deekin extra congratulatory, and Mo was even approached and slapped on the back (a particularly enjoyable one) and it was followed by a annoying beeping sound, making the crowd and Deekin begin to back away in a hurry. As Deekin backed away, he introduced the second test, the Test of Discipline, giving us thirty seconds or therefore to disarm the thermal detonator stuck on Mo’s back to rescue our friend. Winter immediately took charge, directing her companions as to what to do. Mo twisted his arm and head around and used his mechanical knowledge to open up the detonator’s chassis, providing access to the computer system that L’hrequ utilized to disarm the bomb, with Pand’Ora’s watchful eye to help guide their hands and prevent an early travesty. I didn’t really do much, Winter told me to help everyone to stay calm. I’m not sure my voice warrants much calm, but it was nice of her to pretend I was helping. I’m pretty sure they’ve even been in worse situations (even I survived a terrible swoop crash) so I doubted they were in a panic. Though I was glad for Pand’Ora’s eyes helping L’hrequ his hands didn’t seem particularly apt at working the computer. Still together, they managed to diffuse the the thermal detonator just in time, I think the timer stopped on the last second. As the crowd went wild, Mo stuffed the detonator into one of his compartments. Mo’s legs also jerked a bit, apparently the detonator somehow was preventing Mo’s legs from falling. However, not everyone was excited with our victory, since some of them seemed to have lost some credits on bets.

Seeing our victory, Deekin congratulated us again, saying we are doing at least as well as the last group that did it (I mean we had to since you need to pass to succeed, so a wasted statement), and then introduced us to them. The first introduction was to a Geonosian named Urdle, who seems to have appeared just for this event. The second was the Kalleran that Lucinda mentioned, his name being Ku Taow (not really sure how it’s spelled) and he came out of the crowd and gave us a bow. The next one introduced was R7 who appeared to be an astromech droid with blue coloration. Lastly, Orto was introduced as the final member of the last group to succeed. With the seemingly random introductions finished Deekin said that it was time for the third test, the Test of Strength, telling us we were going to love this one and then Deekin went to hit Winter. I, however, saw it coming and called out a warning allowing Pand’Ora to claw Deekin for his audacity to try and attack winter. Orto took advantage of Pand’Ora’s distraction and tried to hit her, but Pand’Ora didn’t even seem to react from the blow. Ku Taow slid up to L’hrequ and with some fancy movements crashed a blow into L’hrequ who was managing to block several blows, but not all of them. Urdle flew at me and punched me in the stomach, and it merely tickled. My suit was built for crashing in races, he’d need a lot more force for me to feel it. R7 pulled out a bunch of bladed appendages, but Deekin shouted at the droid telling him that it had to be non-lethal (even mentioning the droid had been told that before). R7 made some depressed sounded beeps, but swapped out the blades for some blunted metal rods that it spun at Mo who merely used his hands to hold him at bay. Deekin recovered form Pand’Ora’s blow and continued his punch against winter, landing a blow to her chest. L’hrequ didn’t seem to hold the spirit for brawls, and as he stepped away from Ku Taow’s fists, began moving his arms towards a nearby dumpster which seemed to react to his movements. With another wave of his arms, the dumpster was sent soaring through the air and crashed into Ku Taow who was smashed under its weight, but the Kalleran managed to regain his footing. Mo also didn’t vouch for fisticuffs, pulling out a wrench instead and smashing it against R-7. Winter made a return attack against Deekin, striking out with a surprising amount of ferocity directed at Deekin’s crown jewels, making Deekin jump back quickly and putting him in a bad position. I wasn’t worried about the Geonosian, despite his grumpy face I figured he didn’t have the power to affect me. Still, it seemed we were all dealing with our primary aggressor, so I punched Urdle back. Main difference was, Urdle actually felt something.

L’hrequ crashed a trash can into poor Ku Taow again (Really L’hrequ, cheating? I thought your planet didn’t have cheaters) who clearly wasn’t expecting such barrages as he took another large blow. Deekin slammed Winter again, and Orto managed to land another large fist into Pand, this time however she seemed to be a bit rattled by it. Urdle punched me again, flying down at me from above…and I think I felt the wind from his flying by more than a fist. R7’s little fists spun into Mo, the metal on metal giving off a hideous screeching sound. Ku Taow remains strong, despite the large objects crashing into him from the Jedi’s trickery, and struck a blow against L’hrequ again. Pand’Ora changed her target from Deekin to Orto, striking the large Ortolan with her claws. Mo, undeterred by R-7’s chipping fists and continued battering the little droid with the wrench. Deekin plays with Winter, daring her to make her best shot as if she was going to miss. Winter showed him up however, landing a vicious blow to Deekin’s lower extremities (to say the least), a blow that showed. I swung at Urdle, and though I missed I was able to bring myself into a much more defensible position, not that I needed it.

Poor Ku Taow once again found himself meeting the base of the dumpster again as L’hrequ seemed to enjoy hearing the painful crashing sound as his trashy weapon hit. Only this time, it didn’t appear as if Ku Taow had the strength to stand as he and the dumpster crashed into a wall with a nasty crashing sound. Orto landed another blow on Pand’Ora who answered back again with her vicious claws. Urdle pushed towards me, and while he missed I did bump against Mo which knocks my friend off-balance enough for R-7 to take advantage of, smashing his metal fist things into Mo again, which in turn pushed him into Winter. Deekin took advantage of Winter’s loss of balance and landed another hit on her. I land a vicious blow to Urdle’s face, knocking him so senseless the bug couldn’t even fly straight, a fact that brought a hearty laugh out of me. Mo managed to recover his footing and smashed R-7 with his wrench again and Winter landed another ferocious blow against Deekin.

L’hrequ, no longer having his test dummy, he turns his dumpster towards Deekin which crashes into the bothan and sends him reeling, and it doesn’t appear Deekin had much left. Deekin tries to recover and bash Winter, but the dumpster blow makes Deekin a wobbly and Winter easily steps out of the way. Orto attmepts to crash his fist into Pand’Ora, but, even despite her wounds, is too nimble for the large fist inspired as the enemies begin falling. Urdle tries to hit me, but he was still addled by my last blow and was unable to even tap me. R7 spun into Mo, but his metal fists didn’t seem to be able to even chip Mo’s armor. Winter swung at Deekin, but a fortunate wobble actually assisted Deekin in avoiding the blow. Pand sunk her claws into Orto again causing him to roar in pain. I managed to land a flying uppercut to the jaw of Urdle, sending him crashing to the ground, out for the count. Mo landed another clanging blow with his wrench on R-7.

With no foe left for me, and Winter looking likes she was in a bad state, I dash over to Deekin and land a blow to his chest crashing the wind from his lungs and knocks him out. R-7 crashed into Mo chipping off some paint and Orto’s fist landed on Pand’Ora, but she rolled with the blow and seemed unharmed. Pand’Ora returned the blow to Orto, clawing his face with such force the Ortolan became disoriented. Mo decided that this wrench battle was taking too long, dropped his wrench, drew out his massive blaster rifle and blasted R-7 who sparked and squealed from the force and shut off. Winter swung into Orto, but his thick hide didn’t give to her attack. Which was rather unfortunate for Orto, as L’hrequ was still hurling his trash around, and Orto was hit by the dumpster and crashed to the floor. Come to think of it, we were all very lucky not to be hit by the dumpster too. Still, the battle was won as we stood among our now fallen foes. Winterand L’hrequ looked pretty shaken though, and Mo was rather hard to read. I felt fine, but, to be fair, I had to deal with the wimp. Winter really impressed me, however, as her and I were the only two in the group to fight fair. L’hrequ’s actions didn’t suprise me, Jedi… Mo began assisting Winter and L’hrequ in their recovery as the crowd went absolutely bonkers including throwing things in the air and even some gunshots. Deekin, Ku Taow, Orto, R7, and Urdle recovered, and Deekin (considering the circumstances) was seemingly pretty jovial as he clean himself up. In fact, most of them seemed to be in a good mood besides Urdle (who was super grumpy, strange since he was probably the weakest link) and R7 who said that it wasn’t even trying and if it had, Mo would have gone down. Deekin helped pick up Ku Taow from the rubble and the man gave us a bow. Seems we somehow earned respect from this. Winter apologized for her low blows, insisting that she was aiming for the knee caps, not that Deekin believed her. And then there was some discussion of low-hanging fruit and things being apple sized. Deekin then asked if we were ready for our final test, not that we had a choice, and led us back into the Cantina.

Giving us all a seat at one of the booths, Deekin introduced us to the final test, the Test of Endurance, as he licked his lip from some of the blood that was caked there. Deekin said it is probably the most difficult, and even asked Ku Taow to confirm, but the Kalleran just rolled his eyes and shook his head. Apparently it was going to be a drinking contest (why is it never an eating contest), even the droid was allowed to compete since they had some kind of special drinks for him, and it would be all of us against one of them. And with that, the crowd began to chant the name “Meeker” and along the wall a small hatch opened. From it a small creature (about four feet tall) with large eyes and ears came out of it. In fact, he was rather cute and animated. This Meeker as he arrived at the table pointed at us…not sure why was it supposed to be scary? If it was, the crowd bringing over a booster chair certainly took even more of an edge off of it. With Meeker seated, the waitresses brought over drinks for each of us (the one that appeared different went to Mo) and all had something smoking on the top as they put them all in front of us. Deekin told us that even if we fail, we go out feeling good (maybe if it was food). L’hrequ mentioned something about being liquid intolerant, but was told his only option was to drop from this competition to which he did not.

The goal of this test was to drink the entire glass of…this liquid. If anyone one of us was left standing when Meeker passes out, the whole group would win. I asked what was with the drink if only one would eventually take us out, but I guess I misinterpreted the rules as we were going to be served drink after drink. Though we were told that if anyone has any weakness to urine we’d be at a disadvantage (I’d hate to be involved in making this stuff). Deekin also insisted that there would be no cheating in this contest, as his eyes looked and Pand’Ora (though I’d look at L’hrequ), but Pand’Ora told him he would know about cheating. Right when we were going to begin, Winter called us to a halt, asking to use the bathroom before we began. Deekin was hesitant, but Winter managed to convince him to let her go (no one else, just the lady since he was a gentleman).0 Even more weird was Deekin following after her…I was creeped out and kept my ears open in case Deekin tried to do anything. Apparently, Deekin was just ensuring she really had to pee. Winter doesn’t seem like the kind of person who would cheat, kind of reminds me of Nancy that way. Anyway, when Winter returned (applying her lipstick along the way) the contest began. The drink wasn’t the best thing I’ve had, but it didn’t seem bad. Pand’Ora was the first finished, with Meeker matching her speed. I don’t know what was in Mo’s drink, but he sparked and then crashed onto the table. L’hrequ worried that Mo was hurt in some way, but Deekin said he would be fine as he declared one man being down. Winter finished her drink last, she was taking her time and even licked the extra off her lips… was she enjoying this beverage that much?

Round 2 came around and the drinks were delivered again, this time the crowd found it OK to catcall the waitress, how rude. Still we all got our drinks, except Mo, and we all took our drinks. L’hrequ seemed confident, but then his head crashed onto the table. Pand’Ora looked like the drink was gonna get to her, but she managed to recoup and get back together. Meeker seemed to be having a good time, and Winter still seemed to be fine as well. I was detecting hints of mold….it would probably taste better not in a drink.

Round 3 came around and we all got another glass. Pand’Ora, still wavering from her last ordeal with the beverage couldn’t handle the third and went down. Meeker seemed to be doing just fine as was Winter. I was getting rather hungry…I could go for some fungus bread right now….yum fungus…. Deekin was really rude to Pand’Ora as she was unconscious yelling at her about not being so big now or something, honestly….Deekin is a jerk. I yelled at him for it as the next set of drinks arrived.

Round 4 arrived and I got to be honest I could really go for something to eat instead, my tummy was so rumbling something fierce. We all took our shots and things weren’t looking good…like they were all fuzzy. I saw Meeker’s face land into the table…so that was good. But, my own vision started to fade. Last thing I saw was Winter, with perfect poise applying yet another application of lipstick to her lips. She must really be worried about looking good to this crowd, and she certainly could hold her…whatever this is. Winter did well.

I don’t remember too much after that, I was just really hungry. I really hoped that I ate something. Although I really do feel bad I was so out of it. I’m sure we could have gotten some kind of investigating done after our contest completion.

I awoke in the Stranded Cantina, as did all the others and Deekin was already prepared to take us all to “meet Rossi.” Meeker was still laying in his high chair and we were told not to wake him (apparently he is a grumpy riser). It seems it would be our last chance to get out of this, but the others seemed set on this path. Looks like we were going to bid the Foreign Quarter good-bye and follow Deekin wherever that was. We were lead through the back, this time, through the kitchen just like members of the gang. Deeking seemed somewhat more comfortable around us (I always feel comfortable around people who have proven they can and are probably willing to knock my socks off). Exiting the Cantina and entering the alley we walk for another ten to fifteen minutes before the buildings begin to get more sparse as we get to what seems like the edge of town. We are lead to this building that appears to be some sort of garage or motor-pool. Parts of delabidated bits of skiffs, bikes, trikes, hovercrafts, even a landspeeder or two. Some seemed to be in working condition, while others were clearly beyond repair. Entering this building, the employees seemed to have little to no cares in the world, working on their projects and not even paying attention to us as we entered. Deekin took us towards the front desk, where he and the attendant behind the desk gave each other slanted nods before we continued to the back door to the back. Out back, there were more vehicles as well as a large shuttle-craft. It appears to be a large freighter converted into a shuttle-craft vehicle for transport. The loading ramp was converted into an entrance, and it was opened wide for us at the moment. With the converted freighter in sight, Deekin turned to us to ensure we were ready to go, as we wouldn’t have another chance to come back at least for awhile (though, since I’m sure this is a trap, he means it to be awhile). L’hrequ asked if we would be leaving the planet, but Deekin said no. This converted freighter is the fastest ship they have since the Ganathian’s won’t let anyone have anything that can leave the atmosphere (they can have this, but I can’t have my SugarScoot?!). Deekin did say there would be food and drink on the way, at least, including a keg of that swill from last night. Apparently, he brought a keg. Mo said it was thoughtful of him, but I’m sure that was meant in a sarcastic way. Winter whispered to me her suspicions of Deekin, of which I of course agreed, and together we hoped to get a good read of Deekin, but he seemed genuine. Well, that at least speaks for the food and the pleasant thought of us falling into the trap. Regardless, we all loaded up into the freighter where the cargo hold was to be our seating area. Three people were already here, they seemed to recognize us from the Cantina, frankly I had no idea who they were…though I also spent the least amount of time in that place. Stupid Cantina.

Deekin was the last to board, and when he did he hit a button to close the hangar door which seemed to signal the pilot that it was time to go. Deekin kindly offered us our choice of seats in this delightful hangar bay that could fit about thirty, but I didn’t want to sit down. There were no windows, of course what trap would leave us windows, so nothing was really comfortable for L’hrequ. Pand’Ora sat down in a comfortable seat to stretch her leg and began to…clean herself? The ship jerked and began to take off, and I searched for a data link to attach my datapad to, but there wasn’t even a port to track cargo. Additionally, my data goggles couldn’t even link to the signals from the freighter itself. Frustrating! I went to go to the cockpit, but that too was locked from us. The urge to cut it down with my fusion cutter grew with each passing second. The ship was running smoothly, its engine sounded good and everything, so it seemed unlikely the ship was incapable of producing a signal. With the last straw I decided to ask Deekin who gave the classic, we can’t tell you “yet” until Rossi gives us permission. Deekin refused to supply any useful information as it wasn’t allowed. Nonsense….total trap. I began focusing on the vibrations, engine sounds, and the like to get a read on turns and the like but the rest of the group was rather distracting. Mo continuously told me to stop worrying about it, and L’hrequ seemed to agree. At least I was trying to something, I had to find something to help, somehow prevent this trap. Winter asked how long the trip was going to take, and Deekin said that it would take around six hours. And Deekin said mentioned that the ship was heading South for about 8,000 kilometers. Deekin and L’hrequ had some kind of discussion about L’hrequ being a Jedi, and that Deekin thought they were plagues on the galaxy or something. L’hrequ tried to say the Jedi were once guardians of the peace, but Deekin called him out on that pointing out the carnage created by the dumpsters. Though Deekin did say that L’hrequ should keep his Jedi things under the radar, and said something about saying too much. Additionally, at the mention of “tricks” Pand’Ora and Deekin got into an argument on the not so accidental elbowing.

After around six hours of coming up with no way to help us out of this situation, I felt the freighter shift and lower its landing gear…seems we had arrived. L’hrequ even made a snide question if I knew where we were at. Cute, why did I even get sent with this group…this isn’t racing…its not even driving or flying. Anyways, Deekin rose, stretched, and walked over to open the ramp. The oher people joined him quickly, as they all headed down the ramp. The rest of the group quickly followed, except Winter who freshened up first, and I am leaving last… I checked my datapad (since I’m on it anyways), and I had a connection again, but couldn’t get a clue where we were, but at least connections exist (so there was a blocker). Still, I have to go now, I’ll continue this report once the trap triggers…if I’m still alive…

[Saving Log]
-———————
Poncho flew out of the freighter and into the large hangar bay to meet up with the rest of the group. Looking around, it seems that the path into the hangar was seperated from the rest of the world with a large shimmering force-field. The field’s blue glow preventing any hope of an easy escape. Of course, Poncho thought, couldn’t even steal this ship thanks to that. Behind the blue viel was the view of the sky, and below seemed to be jungle-like trees. Poncho seemed unsure if “jungle-like” is an appropriate description in basic, but couldn’t think of a better description. This base seems to be in the air somehow. Poncho tried to think of the ways, perhaps it is built on a mountain or in a tree. Or maybe, Poncho thought, it is one of those large Balloon like ships and not a base at all. Still, it would be hard to tell from here, and the group was already heading towards the Massive Hangar door at the end of the, well, hangar. The large, metal doors began to open with a loud creak and growl as it proceeded to rise out of the way. When it did so, the group was greeted by the points of forty blaster rifles pointing right at them. The rifle’s bearers all seemed to be humanoid, clothed in metallic plates and thick cloth. Their heads masked by helmets fitted with black visors, and, despite all the armors being different in color or design, they all had the same horned skull. Six of these unwelcoming hosts were on the same level as the entrance, while the others were standing along a balcony that stretched all across the airy, large, metal room.

With this great introduction, Deekin and the group all stopped. And soon, stepping through the crowd at the top of the balcony was a tall, dark Togorion fellow, Rossi, who stopped among the warrior people with a big smile on his face. Deekin turned around to face Pand’Ora and the rest of her allies and says with a smile, “This is the part where you guys give up.”

Poncho chimed in, “That’s what my dad told me too!” However, much like most things the toydarian does, it goes mostly unnoticed as Deekin continues, “It’s nothing personal, but, when you told me who you were I knew then that the boss would want to know you as well and he was sure happy to hear that you had arrived. Deekin then turned to the other vistitors, those that did not travel with Winter on her quest to rescue her brother Asher, and said, “You guys go, get out of the way, you don’t want to be in the way of this” while making pushing motions with his hands and guiding them away from the primary guests. The other visitors were petrified with fear.

Rossi waved at the group, from his safe haven about fifty feet away. Mo whispered to Pand’Ora that they could, perhaps, kill Rossi before anything happened, but no one made any such attempts. Rossi then spoke, “Thank you for accepting my invitation and for bringing me so many things that I wanted. Winter Pax, it is a pleasure to finally meet you. You’ll likely be happy to know that your father recently raised the bounty on your head. You’ll be meeting an acquaintance of mine who will be taking you back to Coruscant. I believe you know him already, Dolan? He’ll be here soon.”

“Well this is all depends on the status of my brother!” Winter retorded.

Rossi gave a mighty “oh” and continued, “We’ll get to him. He’s here, he’s safe.”

Winter continued, “I do enjoy being the center of attention, but my cooperation depends entirely on how my brother sounds.”

“Oh, you’ll be meeting soon. I promise he is in very good condition.” Rossi answered, giving the group a short pause before turning his attention to M0-F0, “And you M-0-F-0, I know certain people who are looking forward to meeting you as well and making excellent use of all that valuable data you’ve got hidden away inside you.”

“It’ll be disappointing” M0-F0 chimed.

“Like Pax,” Rossi continued, undeterred, “you will also bring me a lot of credits that I can use. What they find inside you, their disappointment, is none of my concern. I’ll just have the money.” After another pause, Rossi turned his cat-like eyes to Poncho who was confident, or seemingly so, that there really was no reason for him (Poncho) to be kept here. However, Rossi said, “I have an old, old friend of mine, who happens to be one of yours as well, who is quite eager to meet you again. She was giddy with excitement when I told her about you. I can hear the credits now!”

Poncho almost laughed, “Except I’m not wanted by her!” Clearly Rossi had no clue who really own Poncho now. And, thinking about it, Poncho wondered how Rossi could have even spoken to her about him. Rossi, as far as Poncho could tell, didn’t even know him. And even if Rossi did learn about Poncho somehow…it seems unlikely a message could be relayed before this point. Poncho grew more confused than concerned.

“Oh she is eager to see you, at least she was when I spoke with her.” Rossi continued, as he turned his gaze towards L’hrequ, “And, of course, there is you.” L’hrequ looked behind him at the mention of this you as if Rossi was speaking to someone else. Rossi spoke, “I have been asked to bring you to my partner for you are the least value to me, personally, which means you will be the first to die should you decide not to cooperate.” Poncho’s jaw dropped that the Jedi would somehow be worth less than him. Rossi knows about “her” and not the large bounty for Jedi, Poncho thought, strange. Though, perhaps Rossi’s partner has plans bigger than the bounty for L’hrequ’s tricks.

Rossi then turned his head to one of the guards and gave them a nod, “Disarm them, and if they resist make them.” And the six guard on the primary level began to approach each member in Poncho’s group. L’hrequ was checked first, and they gave him a good pat down, finding and taking away L’hrequ’s blaster pistol. However, when they came across his lightsaber, for some reason they treated it as if it was an empty blaster holster. Poncho was unsure how they could confuse it (as he could see the lightsaber ,must have been some kind of Jedi mind-trick or something. However, this didn’t work to grandly as the guard rose his voice and asked, “Where’s the other pistol?”

L’hrequ answered, “It was destroyed in a fight,” but the guards seemed unconvinced.

The guard spoke to someone over his comm, “This one is sort of fishy…” and then began to escort L’hrequ away form the rest of the group.

Winter was next to be searched, and the guards discovered a heavy blaster pistol and a vibroknife, which she surrendered willingly. Still, the guard continued his search, his hand beginning to creep up towards her breast, but Winter’s stern look made the guard back-off.

M0-F0 was next in line, and he handed over his large stun rifle, his blaster pistol, and his combat knife. However, M0-Fo tried to conceal the thermal detonator that he had hidden on his person from the trials earlier, and hoped the guard wouldn’t find it. However, the Guard saw a loose wire that he followed to where M0-F0 was hiding it. M0-F0 opened the container and the thermal detonator activated, everyone in the room got tense, including Rossi, but M0-F0 turned the detonator off and tossed it over to Rossi. The detonator didn’t go off prematurely, and M0-F0’s search was done.

Poncho was next, and the toydarian squirmed a bit as the guard took away his backpack and gear. Soon the guard’s hands began gsliding all across Poncho, somehow finding Nancy, Poncho’s blaster, tucked away in her hidden holster. “Nice try little guy,” the guard said, but Poncho played it off as just being his holster. The search continued, but the guard was unable to find Poncho’s thin molecular stiletto hidden under the thick padding of his crash suit. The guards then began to go through Poncho’s stuff, wondering why the Toydarian would have some of the stuff he did.

Pand’Ora was next, handing over her heavy blaster and her Ion blaster with attached net gun. The guards patted Pand’Ora down for more weapons and discovered her blaster pistol hidden among her fur and clothes.

L’hrequ was being led away, and as the guard and him neared the rest of the guards, more joined the march and followed. The rest of the guards, content with their examinations of the others, back away slowly until they were at a safe distance from the prisoners before joining the rest of their guardsmen. At this time, Rossi spoke again, his eyes focused on Pand’Ora, “It seems you and I are long overdue for a heart-to-heart talk. Dinner, perhaps? I have some fresh Llama in my freezer. I remember you loved it.”

Mo interrupted, “Sure, I’ll have dinner.” Which reminded Poncho about how hungry he was. So, Poncho, too chimed in that he’d have dinner as well.

Pand’Ora, however, asked, “Where’s her (pointing at Winter) brother at?”

Rossi answered, “She’s going to be seeing her brother really soon. She is going to the same place he is. I promise you that you will find out what his fate is. And you will learn that he is in perfectly good health.” Rossi turned towards the others, “Guards, you can take them to the holding cells. Your cone-headed friend is going to receive a thorough personal search.” Rossi smiled as he watch L’hrequ being taken away.

Poncho chimed up, nervously, “I could probably explain his blaster.”

“Oh?” Rossi exclaimed, “Please do.”

Poncho continued, “I stole it from him and sold it for credits.” Poncho looked down to hopefully show shame.

Rossi could barely hold back his laughter, “Then why does he still wearing the holster?” Rossi was sure this was just another waste of his time.

Poncho had an answer, “Because he thinks it torments me!” Poncho growled.

Rossi, at first, laughed, but then he saw the hearfealt rage in Poncho’s face and then let out a sigh and said “Hold! Take him (pointing at L’hrequ) to the cell along with his friends. But, keep them separated.” Upon Rossi’s orders, the guards grabbed the group and began leading them over to a door located near to L’hrequ’s current location. However, as they started to leave, Rossi continued, “Except, for her.” And a guard placed a hand before Pand’Ora preventing her from leaving as the rest of the group was lead away, but not before Poncho could yell, “You’re good Pand! You got this!” As if that simple cheer could make all the difference.

The four others were taken down a large hallway. It was well lit and modern, appearing like those on the Wheel or a nice ship. The group is lead by four guards down the path and then turning right, traveling further, then turning left, traveling further, and then through a door that lead to a holding block. Which, really, was just another glorified hallway with one side being lined with at least 10 thick metal doors each with a small barred porthole (itself having 1-foot by 1-foot dimensions) that looked across the “prison block” to the metal wall on the other side. L’hrequ was placed in the cell closest to the door leading out of the block, in the next cell was placed Winter, the next M0-F0, and lastly Poncho in the next cell down. In each 10 foot by 10 foot cell were small cots and a singular metal bucket. Two guards remained behind to guard the block. Winter mentioned that she was offended that there were only two guards for the four of them, but the guard told her it only takes one to call for others.

Winter called out, “Fresh meat!” hoping to discover if anyone else shared this holding block with her and the group.

After a few seconds, another voice yelled back “Winter?” It was a male voice.

Winter spoke back to the voice, “Oh, Asher!”

“Winter!” Asher yelled back, “What the hell are you doing here!”

“This is going to be awesome, and you’re going to love it,” Winter said.

“Love what? What are you doing! You’re not supposed to be here!” Ashur answered.

“Don’t worry, baby brother, we got this!” Winter tried to calm her hysterical brother down.

“It’s all going according to plan! They won’t know what hit them” M0-F0 added.

“I don’t even know how I even got here, really.” Poncho contributed.

Meanwhile, Pand’Ora and Rossi were alone….well besides the four guards standing over each of their shoulders. Rossi walked over to stand right in front of Pand’Ora and said, “Are you still mad at me?”

Pand’Ora ignored his comment, demanding instead, “Where’s the Elder’s daughter?!”

“Who?” Rossi Feigned,

Pand’Ora pressed the question, “The Elder’s daughter, that’s how I knew what business you were really into!”

“She is safe, she is living a good life now,” Rossi decided to answer, “You do not need to worry about her. She was a small sacrifice to make.”

“You sold her into slavery,” Pand’Ora said, her voice filled with sorrow rising into anger, “You sold an entire village into slavery!”

“It is a small sacrifice for what we will gain. I have told you this. You do not seem to understand,” Rossi was continued.

“You sacrifice our own people!” Pand’Ora interrupted.

“A small number of them to save the greater good! The greater number of us!”

“Not listening,” Pand’Ora said, cutting off Rossi again.

“You have to believe me when I tell you this,” Rossi began again, “I would not have done it if the end goal was not to our advantage. You’ve got to think of the whole planet, not just a group of small people. Twelve….Fifteen….Twenty people!”

“You’re telling me that you enslaved a village to save a planet?” Pand’Ora scoffed.

“Yes! That is exactly what I did!” Rossi replied

“And you kidnapped Winter’s brother?” Pand’Ora pushed, “Why?”

“That was to lure Winter into my grasp!” Rossi answered/

“Why?” Pand’Ora repeated.

“She is worth a lot of money. I need money.” Rossi answered.

“So, you’re going to sell my friend?” Pand’Ora pressed.

“No,” Rossi laughed, “I’m giving your friend back to her parents! I am not selling her into slavery! I am not killing her!”

“You sold the Elder’s Daughter into slavery!” Pand’Ora pointed out.

“She is not the Elder’s daughter. She is a valuable person back on Coruscant. Not only did I know that her brother would lead her here, but also, her brother will ensure her father’s cooperation in other matters that are important to our plan.” Rossi rebutted.

“And what is this plan?” Pand’Ora asked.

“It is very complex and complicated. I will tell you this, there are many wheels in motion, not just our own, and her father’s influence is very important to the people I work with.”

“I have no reason to believe anything you say, unless you show me those wheels.” Pand’Ora stated.

“Then I will show you. Come with me!” Rossi said, as he began to lead Pand’Ora and the four guards someplace in the base.

Meanwhile in the cells:

“I can’t believe you are here! You should be hiding, or running, or whatever it is that you’ve been doing these past years! What are you doing here!” Asher asked his sister.

“I came here to get you, it is unacceptable that Rossi has you in a cell.” Winter answered.

“Unacceptable?” Asher inquired.

“Yes!” Was Winter’s answer.

“What’s unacceptable was when you ran away from home and didn’t come back when Mom and Dad told you too! Do you realize that your mother is in the hospital now!” Asher continued, cutting off several of Winter’s attempts to retort, “She had a mental breakdown after you left. You wouldn’t return our calls…”

“I’m pretty sure that Dad was the one that gave her a mental breakdown!” Winter cut in.

“You can’t blame Dad for everything! You’ve always done that. You can’t blame him for this! He cares about you, and so does Mother. That’s why they wanted you to come home!” Asher berated.

“Dad thinks I’m a liability to his career. That’s why he wants to hide me away.” Winter retorted.

Asher gave out a mighty sigh, “He didn’t want to hide you away he had….ambitious plans for you. But he still loves you, he’s still your father.”

“I think the loves me as much as someone like him is capable of.” Winter said.

Asher sighed again, “You underestimate your own father, he cares about you I could see it! Ever since you left, how hard he has worked to look for you. He has spent way more money than he has spent on this bounty to capture you just trying to locate you to make sure you are safe.”

“See,” Winter chimed it, “Even that right there sounds suspicious. If he really cared about me, he wouldn’t have a bounty on me. If he loved me, he’d give me some measure of freedom. He doesn’t.”

“Ah,” Ashur cut in, “you had a lot of freedom. More freedom than some people had. Its just, I can’t believe you got yourself in this mess. And like an idiot I come looking for you. I’m not profession at this sort of….thing! Promptly got myself captured here and this crazed tiger man captures me and swears all kind of crazy things are going to happen to both of us if I didn’t cooperate. What else was I to do?”

“Well, I’m glad you didn’t get yourself hurt.” Winter mentioned.

“Yeah! No thanks to you! If you would have just come home I wouldn’t of had to do this.” Asher spouted.

“Well its sweet, you came after me. I’ve been very concerned ever since I found that you’re captured” Winter continued.

“Well I was very concerned about you too! So is Mom and Dad!” Asher stated.

“You can tell them I’m doing just fine.” Winter retorted.

“You can tell them that yourself when we get out of this mess. You’re coming home with me… if we get out of this mess.” Asher mentioned.

“I don’t know if we are coming home.” Winter pointed out.

“From the looks of it, it doesn’t look like we are going anywhere.” Ashur expounded. “Do you know anything about this big cat guy? He was saying something about your friend or something, he was trying to lure here.”

“Yeah, I have a togorian friend who is his wife.” Winter answered.

“Well that’s kind of creepy,” Asher said.

“It is,” Winter continued, “Its not creepy that they’re togorian, but she, they, are defiantly at odds. Rossi is a very bad person. He takes what he wants and doesn’t care the costs to other people no matter how many people or how steep the costs.”

“I’ve overheard a lot of his conversations, and I think I agree with you.” Asher added, “I mean, he seems to think he is doing the right thing, but he is going about it in a really weird way.”

“The biggest tyrants feel like they’re the biggest dreamers.” Winter explained.

“I’ve heard him talk about his wife a lot.” Asher brought up.

“What did he say about Pand? I’m interested to hear what he had to say.” Winter inquired.

“He sounded really regretful that it came to whatever tore them apart. He wouldn’t answer my questions and so I just overheard bits and pieces, but he seemed genuinely upset that she was on the outs with him and that he would make it right somehow.” Asher answered, “He said he had something planned, and he talks about this partner that he is working with, but, from the way I hear it, it sounds more like he is not really a partner. Sounds more like he’s a lot smaller than that. He thinks he is a partner, but he is not really. That’s the impression I get. But, like I said, I’m not really good at this stuff. Spy thing…whatever it is that you keep doing hiding from Dad.”

“I’m just trying to maintain my freedom,” Winter extrapolated.

“You’re free back home too, Dad did not keep you in a cell.” Asher dissected.

“No. I’m afraid he’s going to try and lock me away in some kind of covent, or rehabilitation, asylum…where I would not be free. It may be someplace posh, but…” Winter deflected.

“He wouldn’t do that!” Asher interrupted! “He’d threaten it just to try to keep you in line. He would never do that. He loves you as much as the rest of us do, he would never do something like that. He might try to push you into an arranged marriage, but that’s about it. And you know, that would actually be good for you!”

“That’s actually not really nice,” Poncho interrupted, finding the idea quite rude…but very much like his family.

“Hey, who was that?!” Asher demanded.

“That’s just a different kind of prison.” Winter pointed at Asher’s previous statement.

“Who’s that, No!Who’s that voice!” Asher reiterated.

“It’s more of my associates,” Winter answered.

“Hey you, associate boy, stay out of it!” Asher ordered.

“Don’t take that from him,” L’hrequ chimed in.

Asher sighed again, “I can’t believe this….now what are we going to do?”

“Don’t worry…” Winter started.

“We got this!” Poncho cut her off.

“He said something about a bounty hunter coming to get you,” Asher inquired.

“Yeah…he’s a bounty hunter I have encountered a couple times before.” Winter answered.

“How didn’t you get captured? How do you keep avoiding these people?” Asher asked.

“My friends,” Winter explained, a point of which made Poncho blush (and even release an aww sound)…even though he knew he had nothing to do with the events mentioned.

“Who is that,” Asher demanded in response to Poncho aww’ing.

“I had no play in that, don’t worry,” Poncho replied, “I just recently joined the group.”

“I have…I have good friends,” Winter continued.

“So you came here with this Togorian woman and this other person? It doesn’t sound much like a Togorian to me though.” Asher expounded.

“Yes, there are a few of us. Toydarian…” Winter began.

“Who else did you come with?” Asher pressed.

“I also have a cerean…” Winter began to list.

“I am Poncho!” Poncho introduced himself.

“And a droid.” Winter finished.

“Sis, sis, sis, you probably got us in real trouble this time.” Asher lamented.

“No don’t worry yet. We’ve got this. Just stay frosty, when we move our plan into action we may need to move quickly.” Winter encouraged, but this caught the attention of the guards who looked towards Winter’s Cell. Winter merely shot them back a confident smile.

“They’re pretty scared!” Poncho iterated, looking down towards the guards from his porthole.

“Everyone that is working for this Rossi will be dead shortly,” M0-F0 added.

“Who’s that?” Asher asked.

“Your going to kill everyone?” Winter questioned.

“Of course! They are guilty by association. Obviously! They’ll be gone.” M0-F0 stated.

“Who is that guy?!” Asher begged, “He sounds like a bad-ass!”

“He is actually,” Winter answered, “I think you would find him very entertaining,”

“Is that the droid?” Asher guessed.

“Yes. He’s more than a droid! Winter corrected.

“Yeah, you said you had a droid.” Asher reiterated. “How many others did you bring? Did you at least bring a big group? Dozens?”

“Not here with us right now.” Winter replied.

“I think these guys are up to no good.” Asher pointed out. “Something big!”

“Well, yeah. This Rossi person, he’s a slaver, a kidnapper, and…other crimes! And he has delusions of grandeur.” Winter listed.

“Well, not only that,” Asher continued, “but this guy he is working with, that I mentioned earlier…”

“His partner?” Winter filled in.

“Yes, he’s up to some sort of big plan. All I remember hearing was something about a dreadnought.” Asher expounded.

“Dreadnought?” Winter inquired.

“Some sort of super weapon,” Asher answered, “I don’t know anything else, but they are up to no good and if it involves you then we need to get you away from here… and your friends too. I guess they can come.”

“I don’t think we will be here too terribly wrong,” Winter corrected.

“Just…don’t do anything else to rile up the situation, I’ll get us out.” Asher pronounced.

“You think so?” Winter prodded.

“Yeah!” Asher exclaimed, “I’ve got a plan!”

“OK.” Winter said.

“Well, I’ll come up with one!” Asher reiterated.

“I feel better already,” M0-F0 added.

Meanwhile, Pand’Ora was escorted away through several hallways to another door that opened into a large, set of quarters that look rather posh. They are expansive and roomy, and covered in the scent of Rossi. Despite its size, the decorations are rather spartan with very few knick-knacks or pieces of furniture. But enough furniture is there Pand’Ora to easily catch the scent of Rossi. Upon their arrival, Rossi tells the guards, “Leave us!” The guards looked confused at the order and at first hesistate, but they do eventually leave to wait outside the door, leaving just Pand’Ora and Rossi in the room. “So,” Rossi turned to face his wife, “are you going to tell my why you are really mad at me? I cannot believe, for a second you are mad at me for what I’ve told you.”

“I can’t believe that you don’t understand why I am mad at you!” Pand’Ora retorted.

“I understand, but….” Rossi started.

“I cannot even go home until I kill you!” Pand’Ora continued.

“Kill me? Why?” Rossi stammered.

“Because you took and entire village, put them into slavery including the Elder’s daughter! I found her necklace with your stuff!” Pand’Ora pressed.

“Come here and look at this,” Rossi deflected as he walked over to his console and desk and pulled up an image on the screen of what appear to be several warships. “This is power! And this is what has been promised to me for aiding my partner. With that! Togoria will become a power to be reckoned with. Not some backwater world to be trampled upon. We are going to join all the civilized worlds as their equals, not as some primitive world that should be laughed at all the time.”

“So you sold our people into slavery for this?” Pand’Ora cringed.

“Yes!” Rossi exclaimed, “I’m going to make our entire planet. Not just our tribe, not just our region, not even just our continent, but the entire planet! Worthy of fear…”

“The entire planet does not want your help,” Pand’Ora interjected.

“They will! They’ll see the wisdom in my efforts. And you will see it too. Are you seeing it yet?” Rossi asked, hoping.

“No.” Pand’Ora stated.

End Scene.

View
From one prison to another...
...and yet another

Planning is not easy when your opponent has all the power. Well, not all of it. We debated, should we agree to the test? Yes, probably, but L’hrequ and M0-F0 said there was no rush, so we may as well do more exploring.

Pand and L’hrequ stayed in the bar, watching the patrons and observing the staff as they moved in and out from the back kitchen. M0-F0 steered Toto out the back door of the cantina to take pictures of each passerby. I decided to go shopping and Poncho came along as my bodyguard.

My Stars, this place is depressing. Clothes and shoes are at least 10 years out of fashion. Many goods can’t be found at any price. Beggars in the streets. I decided to find out what the crime economy was and see how much of it was connected to Rossi.

A sex worker named Lucinda gave me some idea of how things are run in the foreign sector. There’s no major organized crime here. What little there is centers around Deekan and his cantina. His gang doesn’t charge protection money or “rent,” but they do use the sex workers and don’t always pay for the service.

There doesn’t seem much going on in this penitentiary, so Poncho and I returned to the cantina to meet up with the others. I guess Toto didn’t find anything of interest, so M0-F0 considered sending him into the sewers to explore the literal underworld or a way out. We sat and waited in the sad pub (no music) for a few more hours.

Eventually we agreed to the humiliating trial. Deekan made a big show of it, announcing the contest to the patrons at the bar. They cheered as if gladiatorial games were about to begin.

Deekan led us to the back of the cantina and outside to an alleyway. Here was where the first of four tests took place. “A test of sights,” Deekan says. "Who is your best marksman?’ We all looked to Pand.

A pathetic human was sent to run out a few hundred meters. He held up a half empty bottle of booze. Pand took aim. There was a spray of blood as the hapless human’s fingers flew off. Then Pand turned and punched Deekan. “That son of a [slith] pushed my arm.” He claimed it was accidental, but I doubt a single person believed him. Pand certainly didn’t.

M0-F0 ran down to the eight-fingered human and within minutes reattached them and splinted his hand. Then with great theater, he picked up the bottle and put it on his head. The crowd went wild. The rest of us stood around Pand so that no one would “accidently” nudge her arm. She lifted her rifle confidently and shot the bottle cleanly off M0-F0’s head. Cheers came from the crowd as bet money passed from losers to winners.

The next test started by surprise. Someone slapped an object on to M0-F0’s back. It started beeping and the crowd backed far away. “Piece of cake,” I said, and the team sprang into action. Just to make things extra dramatic, we waited until the last second to disarm the thermal detonator. I think the throng was disappointed. Except maybe the winners of the bet.

We barely had a minute to catch our breaths. Out of nowhere, Deekan hauled off and punched me. Pand’Ora, my hero, hit him straight back. That’s how we learned the third test involved a gang fight. All hell broke loose. A buzzing Geonosian picked a fight with Poncho. Pand was attacked by Deekan’s bodyguard, the huge Ortolan. L’hrequ fought an amphibious humanoid of a race I did not recognize. M0-F0 used his biggest wrench to whack an R7 unit.

L’hrequ used telekinesis to lift a large rubbish bin and slammed it into his opponent. The audience oohed and aahed and whispered as L’hrequ wielded the dumpster using the Force. I did my best to kick Deekan in the ‘nads. Every once in a while I could hear a clang from the wrench hitting that little R7. After L’hrequ put down his guy, he landed the coup de grace on Deekan. Poncho finished his nasty bug. Maybe M0-F0 started to get bored. He finished the droid with his blaster. We let Pand have the biggest guy, and he was last to go down.

For the fourth test, we returned to the cantina. The crowd started chanting, “Meeker! Meeker! Meeker!..” This hairless Drall came out and sat at our table. It was a drinking contest. I told Deekan it wouldn’t be fair for me to start the contest with a full bladder, so I excused myself to the restroom. While tinkling, I went through the vials of my antidote set and found the “Spring Break/Mardi Gras” anti-toxin.

I returned to the table and the contest began. After one drink, M0-F0 suffered the blue screen of death. L’hrequ and Pand went down soon after. Poncho and Meeker were still upright while I stayed fresh as a daisy. After about four rounds, I was the last man standing. I had bought that antidote set for the poisonous plants and animals I expected to find on Cholganna. I never imagined it would come in useful for a drinking endurance competition.

Deekan was genial and congratulated our success for the trials. He said he would take us to see Rossi in the morning. Poncho had another meal, and then we all went off to our rooms to sleep.

In the morning, we meet Deekan at the bar. He led us through the back of the kitchen, into the alley and down several back streets. After about 20 minutes of walking, he led us to a large garage. It held several vehicles in various states of repair. There was a shuttle of a sort. I believe it was a small freighter modified for passenger transport. We went aboard without fuss.

Once we were in flight, Poncho kept trying to figure out where we were. No windows. He tried to access the wireless network, but signals were strangely absent. A jammer?

The entire trip took six hours. That’s just ridiculous. Poncho asked the fight crew about our path and destination, but no one was willing to give him any info. They said, maybe after Rossi gives approval for including us in the details.

We landed in a massive hangar. At one end is a force field. Beyond was blue sky with a canopy of forest below us. As we departed the craft, about 40 Mandalorians pointed their weapons at us. Deekan said, “This is the part where you give up.”

The ruffians forced us to give up our weapons. Despite the pat downs, I managed to hold onto my disposable blaster. I can’t quite read our Toydarian pilot yet, but I think Poncho managed to stow away something as well.

L’hrequ tried to mask his light saber as an empty holster. The grunt didn’t see through the illusion, but the empty holster was a red flag. L’hrequ was pulled away from the rest of us for a… uh… more comprehensive search. As they walked away, Poncho “confessed” he stole the blaster and sold it. When asked why L’hrequ would still wear the holster, Poncho said, “He wears the holster because he thinks it torments me.” This guy should go into public relations or advertising.

Rossi greeted us all. Pand had previously told me what a miscreant he was. After his arrogant reception, my opinion of him turned from intellectual dislike to a more visceral hate. I must remember to use self-control and not kill him myself.

With an annoying cocksure attitude, he addressed us individually. Seems like each of us is valuable to someone. As for me, it’s Dirtbag and Daddy who want to see me again. I asked where my brother was, and he assured me we’d be reunited soon.

Rossi escorted Pand away for a more private audience. The rest of us were marched to prison cells. Sad little cells with a cot and a bucket. I couldn’t tell if the other cells were occupied. Then I yelled, “Fresh meat.” A moment later I heard a familiar voice. “Winter?”

It was my baby brother. We couldn’t see him, but I could tell from his voice he was a few cells down from ours. He chided me for running away and hiding, saying Mom’s worried sick and Dad loves me. He’s so naïve. I reassured him that our current situation was temporary and that my friends and I would take care of things.

Asher said he had overheard Rossi talking. He’s in a partnership with someone. The way Asher made it sound, it’s not a balanced partnership or he’s being played, although Rossi does not seem to realize it. I hope he lives long enough to realize he’s not the top cat he thinks he is. What’s this business with the dreadnaught? A battleship?

More importantly, is Rossi unknowingly being used? That might be something we could exploit, something we could use to get all of us out of here. Lucky for us, there are only two guards in the jail here, and they’re not the brightest stars in the sky. There’s also Brand the Bombastic, if we could find a way to contact him. I know he would like to shut down Rossi’s operation here. Asher’s been here a while. We need to find out what else he knows. And where the druk is Toto?

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Poncho's Logs 1.2
Mission: Rescue Asher from Hell

…Initializing …

Password: * * * * *

…Processing…

… Scanning Fingerprint…

… Identity Confirmed…

Welcome Poncho :)

Creating New Folder: Ganath

→ Report: Day 1-5 | 2000 – 1400 Hours

As Mo was treating my burn wounds, the Jedi erm…L’hrequ decided that he wanted to speak to the wounded attacker that was trying to slink away (the one Pand’Ora let go earlier). I’m not entirely sure how the questioning underwent, but Mo was eventually called over to assist with the wounds, so hopefully it wasn’t too…painful? Seems the group were hired guns, only recently being employed by Rossi for this task. Unfortunately, the man didn’t know too much about where Rossi was going, only that they were to join him and his bigger group there. Besides the easy credits provided by doing this job, they were promised additional benefits for joining Rossi’s crew wherever they would go (apparently it was supposed to be nice). Strangely, when we asked him about where the ship was located, the only thing the mercenary could recall was that it was a really fast ship.

Eventually we all gathered to decide the man’s fate (and those unconscious in the warehouse). No one seemed as concerned as I was about all the evidence pointing towards L’hrequ being a Jedi. As the man’s knowledge of L’hrequ’s Lasersword didn’t seem to even shake the party’s will to let the man live. Though the circumstances made them vote against L’hrequ’s plan to hand the mercenary over to the authorities. Instead, the man (and his compatriots that still lived) were allowed to just stay out of the way until we left. I tried, again, to convince them that we should maybe remove evidence of the presence of a Jedi, (to which L’hrequ tried to pretend otherwise) but they instead took it as a good sign that it was time to get off the Wheel. As if we would ever want to return, what was I thinking. Jedi’s are always trouble, at least that’s what my father used to say.

Though leaving the Wheel will only work if we can figure out where we are going. I recall hearing of it, but the name I was more used to was Donmaku. My parent’s loved this story, as (if I recall correctly) if you were a bad Toydarian you would go to Donmaku, a virtual hell. Doesn’t exactly sound like a place I should visit (though it may bring a quiet chuckle to the folks). Luckily, I guess, the other recall more that it is a theoretical planet. They heard stories about its believed existence, and its, perhaps, brilliant treasure. However, while the stories are many that doesn’t necessarily prove its existence. Winter decided to phone our friend, [Redacted], and share the events at the warehouse as well as ask him/her/it about Ganath. [Redacted] heard similar stories to L’hrequ and Mo, but held no more information at this time. However, [Redacted] did say that he/she/it would go through his/her/its resources and see what he/she/it could dredge up, and let us know when he/she/it did. Winter thanked him/her/it, as well as offered to pay [Redacted] for the floor-plan of the warehouse he/she/it had provided us with earlier (an offer he/she/it kindly turned down, glad to hear that it was in some way helpful).

[ Redacted ]‘s generosity with the map inspired a sudden bout of suspicion from Mo. The droid is curious as to why [Redacted] continuously helps the group for marginally, if any, form of repayment. The others, however, didn’t share such suspicions. L’hrequ believes that [Redacted] sees that he/she/it can prosper off of the group’s success, while Winter feels that being nice is his/her/its business and mentioned that they have payed [Redacted] for information in that past. She believes that [Redacted] merely seeks to sell the group bigger and better information. However, she did say being a little suspicious can be healthy, and the group will keep Mo’s words in mind.

Once we got back to the Silver Bucket we decided to prepare for the journey. Several members went to go restock on medical supplies. Winter debated contacting her parents, but was worried that they would only use that information against her. I brought up the possibility of paying someone to contact them, but she didn’t really like that idea either. Mo convinced Winter that telling her parents may only make them worry more. Two kids kidnapped is worrying, and could make them feel the need to pay a ransom.

After buying some more stimpacks, L’hrequ decided that the next best thing to do was to head to bed. In the meantime, the rest of us went to sell the mercenaries weapons to get some value out of the damage they caused. We decided to hang on to some of the large droid’s parts, four frag grenades, and we kept the ion blasters (with attached Bola carbines) as well. I did notice that the group didn’t seem to excited about negotiating for a better price, I could feel my father shutter all the way from Toydaria. Fortunately, my offering managed to inspire Winter as well and we decided to venture for a good deal, eventually arriving at Farlander’s Outfitting and Supplies. The buyer was a young blonde boy (especially young for running a shop) named Nolls. Perhaps more intimidating was the boy’s Battle Droid that seemed to protect him (As it prepared for combat when we displayed the weapons for sale). Still, with Winter taking the lead (having a history with the young lad), we managed to secure a ten percent increase over the base offer (allowing us to split 704 credits to each of us). Nolls seemed a little sad that we went before telling him some stories, but Winter assured him that we would be back with more business. Nolls also offered his droid to play with Mo in a game of chess. I congratulated the boy on owning his own business at such a young age (if this was me, perhaps my family would actually be proud of me), and the boy seemed rather proud of it. Mo investigated where the boy received the bodyguard droid, to which Nolls told him that his father received it as a retirement gift when he left his military unit. Pand’Ora asked if the business was once Nolls’s father’s, to which Nolls told her it was (and the one originally worked as an assistant to him). With that we all said our farewells.

With that, we all headed back to the Silver Bucket to decide what to do next. Mo decided to work on a broken down Speeder Bike that resided within the Bucket’s hangar bay. Most everyone else seemed ready to head to bed, which meant that my services (still not sure what I’ve really brought so far) would no longer be needed for a period of time. So, with my new-found freedom, I wanted to investigate the racing scene within the Wheel’s arena. Unfortunately, their were no active races to watch, the next race arriving in two days, but I figured I could at least find some rarer Podracing parts or a fellow racer to share stories and ask about advice for the Wheel races. I figured I’d be on my own, but Winter seemed a bit worried about me, telling me I shouldn’t go off alone. I may have blushed a bit. Company would defiantly be welcome, especially since Winter probably knows the Wheel better than I (having only arrived the other day). Winter even prepared to go with a completely different outfit, you could barely recognize her. Pand’Ora seemed a bit hesitant to let Winter go (and not go herself), telling Winter to be careful. A gesture that Winter thanked her for, as she told Pand’Ora that she would call should anything happen.

Investigating for a good podracing parts, we did discover that one of the best shops resides on level 13. I recalled that it was the level that the groups old pilot mentioned we shouldn’t visit, but I wasn’t really to worried about it. However, Winter seemed more concerned than I saying that Brak had received a large crate that needed care in its transport. I suppose it must be really good stuff, as Winter recommended avoiding levels 12 and 14 as well. The late night inhibited most attempts to find a good shop, as most places were already closed. However, with Winter’s help we did get a lead on one of the premier racers on the Wheel. His name was Teeto, who displayed his success through the ladies that flocked to his arms. Being a Gand, I wondered who the ladies were, but I, perhaps, would find out eventually. We were recommended to visit in the morning to see him.

So, I didn’t exactly discover anything interesting, but Winter had some questions to answer too. I attempted to help her find any information or leads on her brother (like if her parents know and are looking, or recent sightings). Winter was a bit surprised that I don’t know very much about computers, claiming that I seemed rather smart. A nice compliment, but I unfortunately had to let her down. Though, I did do some pretty deep digging on the holo-net [well, at least for my abilities], but the only information I could find was two weeks old, and it was of Asher winning a para-sailing competition back on Coruscant. So, not a very helpful lead. Though, thinking about it now…isn’t Coruscant a core world? Could Rossi have Asher and be in the Outer Rim….is that where we are….gosh I really wish I knew my planetary travel now. Maybe I’ll ask Mo…

The next order of business that Winter wanted to investigate was the local Wheel news to see if anything had come of Brak’s delivery. And, it seems, that it has had quite the impact as the news channel was flooded with emergency information on an explosion occurring on Level 13. A hotel appeared to be the target of the bombing. Rubble, dust, smoke (and what appeared to be a gas) filled the screen though perhaps more interesting was the silhouette of what appeared to be Imperial Stormtroopers sneaking through the smoke. Or at least people wearing extremely similar white and black outfits. What were they doing there? I was shocked at all the civilian casualties being shown and counted up….Brak isn’t looking like to nice of a fellow. And if this was due to the presence of the stormtroopers, it certainly missed its mark. The other issue is Stormtroopers are going to be trouble if they know L’hrequ is a Jedi (especially after the incident in the warehouse). When I brought it up to Winter, she told me I should stop using the Jedi word, and I agreed it is a dirty word as where Jedi go trouble always follows. Winter seemed a bit disappointed in me, even after I told her I get it from my father.

Curiosity seemed to have a hold of us, however, as we all seemed to want to investigate the scene. Perhaps we could help the survivors, and there is that great podracing supply depot down there. Winter contacted and invited the others to join us and we all met up at the lift. As the doors opened on level 13, it was easy to see that we had arrived on our intended floor. Chaos surrounded us as wounded innocents were being attended to around us. Some medics ran onto the lift as we left carrying a stretcher with someone who was moaning in pain. Things were bad. L’hrequ’s eyes browsed through the injured, seeking those in desperate need for aid. Fortunately, none of the people we passed appeared to be in danger as those with bad wounds were already being attended too and the others seemed stable (at the very least). The scene sort of reminded me of the attack on Nancy and I’s old home…no one should suffer like this.

Soon we arrived at the scene of the carnage. Security droids (lead by a human officer) had formed a perimeter around the area, keeping civilians from entering the area. Some reporters were a little past the line, but it appeared as even they didn’t dare get to close to the remnants of the hotel. Within the rubble, medical personal appeared to be sifting through the rubble looking for survivors or those in need of medical attention. It wasn’t looking good. I asked if we were planning on trying to get through to investigate, and Winter confirmed my question saying that we were only here out of curiosity, even asking me if I was curious myself. I was a bit…scared to tell you the truth, but I had a feeling delving deeper was going to happen. In fact, after taking a look around, L’hrequ asked me to distract a droid in particular. It was pretty random, and so I asked exactly what kind of distraction and he seemed to get upset asking me if he had to come up with everything. Jedi I tell you…sensing his desire to get in, I figured I’d try to talk the droid into letting us in. Unfortunately, the droid was set on getting security information instead of additional medical assistance. I tried to flub up some info, but the droid seemed dead set on receiving a ID card of some kind. Rather irritating, especially in an emergency like this! They could use any help, and I know Mo is a fantastic doctor! However, the droid kept saying “Identification please. Identification please….!” Arghhh. Though it seems that I was still providing the distraction that L’hrequ wanted as he proceeded to just walk past his droid, why did he get the off-duty droid? Though L’hrequ seemed…rushed? Worried? Angry? Not sure…though that could just be his face as it is usually the one he gives to me for anything. Still, L’hrequ seemed to walk by with very little issue. Pand’ora followed suit. Seems Winter was talking to the Officer on duty that seemed in control of the scene, in fact she almost sprung on him as soon as L’hrequ started his walk. Another distraction? Then again, I now wondered why I didn’t also attempt to go through the human working the scene.

L’hrequ and Pand’Ora, having passed the apparently ineffective perimeter, began to tell us details of the hotel’s crumbling remnant. Apparently it was a grisly scene, with new erm…body-inspired décor to say the least. Still, it appeared almost everything important was destroyed in the blast. With the center of the blast being focused in the hotel lobby, it didn’t give too many details of an intended target. Just when they were about to give up, Pand’Ora mentioned seeing something move in another room. Winter, Mo, and I waited with baited breath (or…processors in Mo’s case) as we assumed they approached the person! Instead, we discover that it wasn’t a person after all, but a loose lamp fixture swaying back and forth, barely hanging on to its cord. However, the room they had entered was, as we were told, was some kind of office and it had pieces that seemed to still be intact, such as some furniture. Though, most interestingly L’hrequ discovered a datapad under the desk that had fallen over. It apparently was in working condition, but requested a password to access it. L’hrequ seemed prepared to attempt to hack the password, but Pand’Ora and Mo insisted that he brings it for Mo to explore instead. L’hrequ seemed hurt from the lack of faith in him, but still complied (though he made a joke about leaving the datapad behind.

Taking the datapad back to the ship, Mo attached it to his own computing devices and began his work at figuring out the datapad’s password. Being Imperial, it probably was something like 1,2,3,4,5. No matter what the password, Mo managed to get through the encryption and access its information. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your point of view, the datapad was Imperial. Apparently, not only was it an Imperial device, but it also carried a day planner or log of an Security Bureau Specialist. Within this log was information on important Imperial Officers who have arrived and left, what room they were staying in. According to the log, twelve Imperial Officers were residing within the hotel on this day! In fact one listed only as “616” was confirmed to have a entire platoon of stormtroopers in his service (must be planning something big with those) [According to Mo, a platoon is a grouping of forty soldiers]. The mission of these Officer visits were to observe and stay hidden. A query that made me ask who they were watching, a question L’hrequ also had. When Mo investigated those being watched, almost everyone in this group was mentioned (only I seemed to be missing, though I only did arrive yesterday). Winter and Mo’s also had bounties listed with their names (as did this Brak fellow). Additionally, some man named Remo and our friend [Redacted] as people to watch. Rossi’s name was mysteriously missing. The group decided that [Redacted] would be a good recipient of the computer as thanks for all he/she/it has done (as well any additional information to be had in the future). L’hrequ even mentioned that [Redacted] could probably get more use out of this information (or his/her/its contacts). The whole group seemed good with it. At this point though, it was rather late (Or I suppose early at this point) so we decided to head to bed (except Mo who went back into the hangar to work on the speeder bike).

The next morning, we discovered that the final death count was sixty-eight people. A most unfortunate situation. L’hrequ was convinced that Pand’Ora’s discovery of the datapad was thanks to “The Force.” I laughed, as he was the Jedi, not Pand’Ora, L’hrequ tried to recover by adding that the Force surrounds all of us. Sure helped all sixty-eight of those people back at the hotel, but sure we got a computer. Thanks, Force. Additionally, we had received a message from [Redacted], it told us that he/she/it had some information for us and, should we choose to meet him/her/it, [Redacted] would be within [Redacted] all day today.

With nothing else to go off of, It was an easy decision to go meet with [Redacted]. Winter took five minutes to make herself even more beautiful before we left. As we arrived at [Redacted], the [redacted] was rather quiet. We were led to [Redacted]’s private room by the large being named [redacted] who left us to our business upon our entry. [Redacted] politely invited us to sit down and (thankfully) order ourselves some food. Oh, I was so hungry!

As we ate, [Redacted] had good news and bad news for us. The bad news was that the hacker that Mo had asked [Redacted] to locate was being awfully slippery and difficult to track. [Redacted] assured us that he had his/her/its best people investigating the hacker, but it would merely take more time. Mo seemed fine with it, I’m assuming he was glad he was having some assistance in locating this hacker. The good news, however, was that, according to [Redacted]‘s network, the planet Ganath wasn’t as much of a legends as the stories would lead one to believe. From what [Redacted] has been told, Ganath resides within a massive radiation cloud, the exact makeup of the planet is unknown, mostly rumor and speculation. Some believe that the planet is a massive wasteland unable to harbor life of any kind (and [Redacted] recommended we bring environmental suits just in case) [I kind of doubted the need, why would a irradiated wasteland be a good place for bounty exchanges. To much risk to all parties.]. However, the other stories [Redacted] had heard was that Ganath was a paradise inhabited by very Xenophobic people. The other bad news was that while [Redacted] had some coordinates for Ganath, but they seemed to place the location in Hutt Space would could mean encounters with pirates, cartels, or worse. Of course, I didn’t see too much issue there, as Hutt Space also includes the best planet in the cosmos, Toydaria. That and I’ve lived in Hutt space my whole life (of course that incident with the gang was kind of sour…and there are a few grumpy folks), but mostly people trying to get by. So not that bad. The coordinates were old, but, as [Redacted] pointed out, our best lead at the moment.

Upon receiving the coordinates, Mo brought up the gift that we had planned. [Redacted] had heard about the disaster on Level 13, and when Mo mentioned that something was received from the wreckage intrigued even the intelligent [Redacted], especially seeing it was a Imperial Datapad. [Redacted] was curious how deep Mo had plundered the depths of the machine, to which Mo answered honestly telling [Redacted] everything. [Redacted] wasn’t surprised at the idea that Imperials were still lingering on the Wheel after the events that happened a year and a half ago (something involving a band of rebels and the death of the Director) and figures some of them may have stayed behind. L’hrequ asked [Redacted] about the coded Imperial Officer (Officer 616) and if that number meant anything to him. After a brief pause of thought [Redacted] said that he/she/it didn’t recognize it, but even through my feeding frenzy (And Mo’s occasional donation) I could tell he/she/it wasn’t telling the truth (though I have always been good about sensing out lies). [Redacted], then answered back wondering how deep we ventured into everyone’s personal records, and Winter brought up they only looked into their own records (And that I was missing from its pages). Winter assured [Redacted] that we had not perused [Redacted]’s own record. Though [Redacted] seemed undisturbed, was just looking to find out if we found any interesting information.

The conversation then transitioned into something about the Wheel’s government. [Redacted] informing us that the reason a new Director hasn’t been elected was that the council (which currently runs it) is hesitant to vote in a new leader as they may prefer this more council-based form of government, seeing it as a bit more fair and hopefully to avoid the risks demonstrated in the Empire’s government. L’hrequ went on something about Cerea’s government being great or something. They had a council or whatever and it’s fair.

Winter brought up that the attack on level 13 was probably a targeted attack, and asked if [Redacted] knew, perhaps, who the attack was targeting. [Redacted] said that if the hotel was as filled with Imperials as this evidence believed, then an attack on it would be plausible. However, with the explosive going off within the lobby, he/she/it is unsure if the attack was targeting someone in particular. [Redacted] said that you’d expect the explosives to be a more select area instead of a large gathering area if it was intended for that one person, but that was, in [Redacted]’s words, is own speculation.

With this information, the group seemed content with the information they had been given (a pity as I could have used another helping after that bit about Cerea). With us all preparing to leave, [Redacted] once again thanked us for the gift, and said that he/she/it would be sure to send us each additional credits as it truly was a great gift. Winter was glad that [Redacted] appreciated it, and L’hrequ had to add that if [Redacted]‘s companions found anything useful to pass that info along to us. With that, [Redacted] transmitted us the coordinates and bid us farewell.
As everyone left, I lagged behind until they all left. Pretending I had a little bit more on my plate I had to finish. Really, I wanted to ask what [Redacted] really knew on 616, and why it seemed to bother him so. Of course, I’m not really in a position to ask questions of my friend, but he/she/it did tell me that he/she/it was unsure what he/she/it knew, but that he/she/it was going to investigate it further. [Redacted] did promise to tell me what he/she/it finds, and I found that good enough though I did warn him/her/it that I felt that 616 is probably still alive (if his troopers were) and I wanted my friend to be careful. I felt bad I already asked….especially given our current relationship, I was sorta afraid I already rocked the boat too much. [Redacted] didn’t seem too fazed at the question as I left though. Still, couldn’t help but feel that this may be something bad… Hopefully that Imperial Datapad can help get [Redacted] the upper-hand…assuming it was ever lowered. [Redacted] also investigated how I was being treated, and was glad to learn that I was doing alright.

Pand’Ora had intentions to buy something called an Omniscan that she wanted to add to her armor. Apparently, it would assist her in noticing those that sought to stay hidden from her mighty gaze. Additionally, she was searching for an Advanced Optics Suite (which would help her be prepared for ambushes). Sounds useful. On top of that, the party wanted everyone to purchase a Space Suit and breath masks in case Ganath’s atmosphere was unfriendly. By the time I had regroup with them, they had already completed their shopping trip. I do hope they negotiated for a better price (I was able to help Pand’Ora get a great discount on her gear), though I wasn’t sure they really did that (since it took my encouragement to get them to negotiate for a better price on the blasters we got from the ambush in the warehouse). Lagging behind, I had to go purchase my spacesuit (though I felt it was mostly unnecessary). I was more than willing to get a lower price on the suit I didn’t want (the shopkeeper wasn’t too thrilled at my prodding). I was never too into negotiating, but I guess a piece of my disapproving father still haunts me. But, hey at least I may bring something to this group, plus my credit stick is looking mighty full (well, If you ignore the debt of course). Soon I should be able to at least get a few Podracer pieces to begin building my ship. Maybe Mo could even help me!

Unfortunately, it didn’t seem I would have time to talk to Teeto as with the shopping done the others were itching to get going. I couldn’t say I blame them, since Winter’s brother was in need of rescuing (though I may think once or twice about my brothers, though I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t craft a deal letting them go and get paid for the ordeal without any outside help). I was shown the Pilot’s seat by Mo and L’hrequ (who is calling me Sancho…I’m not sure what that means at the moment). Luckily, Mo was more than willing to plug in the coordinates and find a path through hyperspace (is that what it called, finding a path?) And afterwards, Mo entered the co-pilot’s seat and assisted me flying through the Wheel’s traffic and out into hyperspace! From Mo’s calculations, it would be a three days until we arrived, now what to do. I was shown my quarters, though I’m not convinced it’s actually a room. It looks more like a closet, was this a short joke? Still, I guess I had to deal with it, maybe I’ll just sleep in the pilot’s chair. L’hrequ also got a new hairstyle thanks to Pand’Ora as his ponytail was now entirely braided. Pand’Ora seems quite skilled at decorating hair, and L’hrequ was awfully proud of his new look. In fact, he constantly swayed it around…it was kind of strange. Though I don’t really have hair, so maybe that is what you do when you have hair? I don’t recall Winter doing that though… I eventually decided to assist Mo on his speeder project, I could use the practice.

After an uneventful three days in hyperspace, we finally able to jump out of its bluish embrace. As we exited, we are greeted by a large reddish-purple planet that, at first glance, appeared to be barren. It’s entire surface was surrounded with a shimmering reddish glow. Additionally, it seemed to be devoid of any moons. Mo begins to scan the area, but he was unable to detect any orbiting ships or satellites. As for the surface, our scanners were unable to pierce through the thick radiation field. In fact, the sensors couldn’t even detect the planet. If I had to guess, that’s a good clue that we have arrived at our destination, though I really hoped it wasn’t as bad as it looked. Being surrounded by a cloud of radiation didn’t make me too optimistic though. It wasn’t long after we had arrived that we soon picked up some activity. About a minute of us slowly approaching the planet we detect four small crafts suddenly appear on our sensors. As these “ships” approached, they were like nothing I had seen before (which for me isn’t all that impressive as far as spaceships are concerned). The ships were about the size of fighters, but it had these strange wing things in the front and on the wings. It also had what appeared to be a steam motor or something, but still sported Ion engines. Strange. I awaited the others commands on what our response would be, my fingers itching on the thruster. It seemed they would prepare for battle, as they began to charge the shields and dashing for the gunnery stations. Winter seemed to be organizing the whole thing, like a captain would. Mo stayed in the co-pilot’s seat ready for the possible engagement. However, it appeared we may have had a problem beyond the opposing pilots, for as we prepared the ship for combat, we got warnings that the radiation level outside our ship was reaching dangerous levels. Whether it was building up as we floated around or increasing as we got closer to Ganath was uncertain, and I was positive we’d have to be certain soon or be in real trouble.

The ships, as they got closer, appeared to be single piloted vessels with some vicious looking weaponry. As we prepared for the worst, we were hailed over our system. The voice commanded “Attention unknown spaceship, you are trespassing on Ganath Space” (Lol, I’d love to hear them tell that to the Hutts, since they are in Hutt Space), “you will go to these coordinates and follow orders.” Mo was feeling feisty, at least I thought, as he asked under whose authority we were being commanded. The voice seemed aghast and replied, “The emperor!” Well, if he meant Palpatine, he certainly was full of radiation in the head. Mo proceeded to ask for a name and, after a brief pause [assuming his shock from earlier was still in effect] he answered with the name Emperor Empatojayos Brand. Unsure of the name or even really the place, the party decided to comply. Apparently Mo had asked who the Emperor was to fish out if it was Rossi or not (and with knowledge it wasn’t agreed to comply). It was good thinking on Mo’s part, I never thought Rossi could be Emperor, as the things Pand’Ora tells me make Rossi look to pathetic to rule a planet. We tell them we shall comply and their response was transmitted…sort of. While the coordinates were sent electronically it was in such an archaic form it took our computers awhile to translate their morse code into something actually usable. How do these people even survive in this radiation with this tech?

Though the time it took the message to send gave L’hrequ plenty of time to call a team meeting within the cockpit of the ship (he called it the bridge). The others exited from their turrets and started along their way as Mo recommended that we all put on our spacesuits due to the radiation. As we gathered within the cockpit, Pand’Ora and Mo managed to catch a glimpse of the Ganathian pilots. Mo saw what appeared to be a humanoid wearing some kind of roundish helmet, but Pand’Ora with her cat-like eyes pointed out that they didn’t appear to be helmets, but rather their egg-shaped heads. The Gantathian ships then flew to surround our ship in order to better control our journey towards the planet and the coordinates. When we had all squeezed into the tight cockpit (luckily I got to stay in my comfy seat), L’hrequ leaned forward and told us, in almost a whisper, that Empatojayos Brand was killed ten years ago. Apparently, Brand was a Jedi Knight known for his adherence to law and order. Apparently a very great jedi until he was slain by Darth Vader, at least as it was believed among his people. Something clearly was up, with two mismatched stories. I suggested that perhaps the story was a ruse and Brand was using the planet to hide. After all, it was a secret planet and L’hrequ had lived in hiding as well. Surely this “great Jedi” could as well? Mo asked if Brand was also a Cerean, but L’hrequ said that Brand was believed to be a human. Mo brought up the great point that if it was the real Brand, that perhaps the “Great Jedi” could train L’hrequ. However, L’hrequ took this as a negative thing, asking if Mo thought he sucked. Mo tried to explain himself better, but L’hrequ kept it on a negative note. To try to cheer him up, I pointed out that at least L’hrequ survived where as all the others, and even potentially this Brand fellow, had not. That takes some amount of skill (and makes one the best out of lack of competition).

However, as the conversation continued, L’hrequ mentioned something about Brand being turned. I suppose he meant brainwashed or something, but the stories I heard of Vader didn’t make him sound like a man who wouldn’t just kill him. In the end though, I think we all believed that Brand was more than likely hiding out, perhaps after faking his death or merely declared dead for being missing for so long. Though, going to be real, unless it was Rossi pretending to be this Brand fellow (doubtful if Brand was human) then I really didn’t think it mattered. No matter who it was, we’d have to deal with them as it seems we were going right into their hands.

The ladies of the ship were pretty disappointed in L’hrequ’s decision to gather the group in the cockpit instead of just using the comm system as they left to more comfortable chambers. I held back a chuckle as L’hrequ seemed to find such a question nonsensical. It appeared to be a good time to call off the meeting, as we were now entering the large radiation cloud around the planet. Our sensors and alarms began to blaze, with continuously rising radiation levels exceeding safe levels as vision began to fade. Were the Ganathians planning on cooking us?! About a minute into the cloud, and just when it seemed that the radiation was going to destroy the ship, the cloud began to clear and quickly the radiation sensors dropped to zero radiation immediately. Ahead of us was now a beautiful blue-green planet as we approached a city that seemed very different than those I’ve seen (again, not much competition with only Toydor and Nar Shadda [I think the planet also counts as one big city]). Smoke seemed to cover the city, but upon closer inspection it seemed it was actually steam that the whole city seemed built around. Rivers flowed through strange buildings and falling through large wheels, and ships that with balloons and…uh cloth wings (I guess its the best way to describe it) Seemed to fill the city’s sky. The Ganathian pilots flew us towards a landing pad before veering off to their own destinations. The pad itself, was not very welcoming as it appeared over twenty individuals awaited us to land. I attempted to avoid all the silly people occupying the landing pad, and did so, but we still had a bumpy landing. L’hrequ had to be sure to comment that Brak would have landed much better, but it was easy to silence the Jedi by reminding him his friend played a big part if the death of Sixty-eight innocents on the Wheel. I also offered to stay behind to repair the mediocre amount of damage, a win for me as I wasn’t to interested in meeting another Jedi. However, the others insisted that we all go, shouldn’t the pilot stay with the ship?

After a brief pause for the others to get out of their spacesuits (Winter also took time to make herself beautiful, we exited the ship. Outside we were greeted by a bunch of humanoids with egg-shaped helmets on, all wearing metallic armor with steam coming out of its backpack. Guess they were powered for some reason or another. And they were armed with some sort of weird gun. As if that wasn’t a warm enough of a welcome (seriously, they need this many warriors for people complying) we were approached by another humanoid whose head was really shaped like an egg (though not as pointed or big as L’hrequ’s) only he was wearing robes and had a lovely disapproving frown. Defiantly an improvement, ugh. In his hands were what appeared to be some kind of paper and quill, and as he approached us he looked at us with his beady eyes and asked us who we were and what we were doing here. Mo introduced himself as Emperor Mo-Fo and us as his subjects, though Winter apologized and told them that Mo’s humor chip was malfunctioning. These people probably couldn’t even comprehend a droid. Winter then proceeded to introduce us all and explain that we were here to rescue her brother Asher from Rossi. A fact that made the egg-head smirk, either he knew something or knew we weren’t going to be able to do it.

With introductions finished, the robed-man told us that we would have to meet the Emperor who is known to be just and sometimes merciful, clearly this man wanted the mercy part to be ignored for us. So polite. As we progressed, Winter seemed to be watching the Ganathians closely, altering her step and posture to better match. Now that is being polite, not that these pointing and sneering Ganathian’s deserve it.

The building we were lead into basically was a large bunch of hallways with some carpeting, I guess they even build their buildings to allow them the maximum capabilities to be condescending as each little doorway along the hall had some Ganathian looking aghast at us. They should probably look in a mirror, as they look like some kind of instectoid laid eggs in their head, I wonder if that was true…perhaps they have head-infesting bugs on this planet. Ew. Strangely, I saw no other species besides these Ganathians here. Maybe they eat outsiders? After a terribly long flight, we eventually approached a large set of closed double-doors that had two guards holding some-kind of archaic axe-spear thing in front of it. The guards stood aside and opened the door as we approached so we could enter. Upon entry, we got to listen to some terribly confused Ganathian announce the arrival of Empatojayos Brand. I will record what he said (for your sake rather than mine as I found it more annoying than anything). “All Hail Empatojayos Brand, Emperor of Ganath! Brand the Just! Brand the Kindly! Brand the Merciful! The Truthbringer! The Skykiller! The Beacon of the New Era!” Though they did seem to miss The Conceded, surely it fit into that list of names, like really even the Ganathians call Brand only sometimes merciful. Still, lucky for us, as the last title was announced, silence filled the oversize room, well besides my companions footsteps. The space was like a entire building itself. With giant windows overlooking the city at the far end past the throne that presided at the top of a small (in comparison to the large room) set of stairs. Floating at the top of those stairs was, I assume Empatojayos Brand. The man was clearly held together by cybernetics, and was missing his legs, instead he was using what I assume were repulser lifts. If he had his legs, he would probably had been about six feet tall. The man’s hands were missing, replaced by cybernetic ones, and his face (while human and not Ganathian) was mostly covered in metallic plating, only his eyes and nose peeking at us. Not the “Great Jedi Knight” I was expecting.

As we got close, the Ganathian that was leading us, Winter told me he was called the Magistrate, demanded that we kneel and show our respect (not that respect would be what was shown, but I digress). Winter began to kneel so I decided to follow her example. I didn’t want to rock the boat too much just yet. This is when the mighty Jedi, who waited for us to kneel first, began to speak. He greeted us and “apologized” for our rude welcome which was because “they don’t get many guests here” (I wonder why). Then he proceeded to ask what brought us to this “fair” planet (didn’t we already answer this). Poor Winter had to, once again, answer the question. Telling Brand that her brother had been kidnapped and was being held for ransom, and that she was told that he was here. Brand asked who would have brought her brother here, and Winter told him it was a Togarian bounty hunter known for kidnapping and slaving. When Winter mentioned Togarians, Brand’s eyes lifted to gaze at Pand’Ora, I guess, at the very least, who knew what one was (guess he knows something). Winter continued saying Rossi’s name and that he had told us to find him here. Winter then continued telling Brand that it Ganath is a large planet and that we don’t know exactly where to find him. She then asked that if Brand could assist us in finding her brother, and added that he was a sweet and innocent young man, then Brand would have Winter’s eternal gratitude. Brand seemed to be weighing Winter’s words as she spoke, as if debating if they were true or not. Winter also added that she wasn’t sure why Rossi chose Ganath as the point of the exchange.

Brand followed up her request asking who the rest of us were, again already asked and written down by the magistrate, and Winter told him that we were here friends (aw :3) and that together we are a team. But Brand continued his scrutiny, almost as if trying to decide to kill us, narrowing it down to who else came with us? Winter answered no one else. was anyone left on our ship? Again, Winter answered no), was anyone left in space? Winter answered I don’t think so, but they sent people to get us, so they should know anyways. Did you tell anyone else where you were going? Winter told him that we got coordinates from someone, so that person could probably guess where we went. Who did you get these coordinates from (Really, how paranoid is this guy, like he could know this person anyways)? Winter told him that we got the coordinates from an information broker (which seemed to worry the “Skykiller”) on the Wheel, a space station. All this tough info really made The Beacon of the New Era think for a good thirty seconds or so and then, as if awakening from a trance, told us to rise and apologized again saying he normally didn’t stand on formality (stand, as if), but his subjects insist upon it (oh, so its their fault?). We, including the magistrate rose, and went right on back to flying, had to get that crink out of my back from that pointless kneeling. Winter however held herself to amazingly high standards and appeared as if she hadn’t even been kneeling. Seriously, this planet could learn from her. Then, the Truthbringer gave each of us a narrow gaze as if he was scanning us. Brand’s gaze paused on L’hrequ for a longer period of time than us, before turning his gaze back to Winter to ask another stupid question, you are here to retrieve your brother and then what? Winter told him that we would have some business to finish with Rossi and then we would leave. The statement made Brand raise and eyebrow as he finally got to the crux of the issue, telling us that he was “afraid” that it would not be possible. Telling us that now that we had found Ganath and its rude inhabitants we could not leave. Brand the “Kindly” continued to tell us that it was too much of a risk to let us go knowing this lame planet exists, and should we go back to our normal lives and knowledge of this place’s existance got out who knows what sort of Chaos it would cause. Mo asked what was at stake, addressing Brand as Emperor. Brand continued with a lame excuse that these people, the Ganathians, are extremely Xenophobic and are afraid of the outside world (what they can’t even go outside?). The Truthbringer believes that their civilization would collapse if they were suddenly overrun by alien lifeforms. Brand mentioned that they have occasionally had visitors, but that they too were never allowed to leave. How have the Ganathian’s survived all these visitors! Brand even continued that the “Visitors” (correct word of course is prisoners) continue to live here “peacefully” allowed to pursue their “happy” lives. Luckily, Brand addressed his improper word use, saying they are not prisoners in a sense they can not move about the planet freely, they just can’t leave the planet. How wonderful, certainly not prisoners. Their have been only a handful, Brand continued, and told us we couldn’t imagine the turmoil it has caused his excessively rude people. Luckily, Brand the Just (the HUMAN) is in charge of protecting them (the Ganathians that hate non-ganathians because they’ll somehow destroy their civilization) [Yes, something is wrong here]. Brand seemed determined to protect these Ganathians from harming each other (yeah, probably common here) and from letting the planet get despoiled like so many other planets by the Empire and other nefarious foes (like has he even met an Ithorian?). Lucky for us, Brand had just the thing to make us feel all warm and bubbly inside! Brand the Just had a place where we could visit (I thought we could roam the planet?) where we could be with others of our kind (seems to forget himself in that little category). And, goodness, it has Cereans, plenty of droids, and even Toydarians! As a history buff (well, compared to this guys xenology) I just had to mention that according to my people the Toydarian’s residing here (and probably everyone else) is in Hell. This made Brand the Kindly to laugh and mention that he knew that old story and that perhaps, from a distance (though getting close seems to confirm it more than the radiation cloud), it may look like Hell, but it really isn’t so bad on Ganath after all. I mention being trapped is a kind of Hell, which seems to disturb him that I would feel such a way, though luckily Winter interjected before I really let into this Brand.

Winter told Brand that she could understand the way that Brand felt knowing what the Empire had done to other planets, even when they had no intention of affecting those on the planet, they still did a tremendous amount of damage. Mo asked if their was anything here that the Empire would even want, to which made Brand go quiet for a moment, before answering somberly with a yes (well, that’s a surprise, maybe something useful is on this planet?) but he could not say anymore, because he had given an oath not to share certain secrets with outsiders. Winter, somehow maintaining her cool in the pretty poor offer given to us, decides to fish for a bright side asking if, even if her and Asher couldn’t leave the planet, Brand could still help, at least, to rescue Asher from Rossi and bring brother and sister together. Brand pondered for a moment and then brought up that he also has a stake in this, not just Asher and Winter. The Truthbringer wonders why Rossi chose this place to meet Winter, which worries him because if he doesn’t know who they are or what they are doing here, they could be a danger to “his” people (even though he has been clear up to this point that knowing this planet exists is an apocalyptic weapon to “his” people). Brand had to believe that his person (Rossi) had to be in the Foreign quarter (As if not knowing someone exists means they go to the prison anyway). Because they usually intercept all incoming traffic, guiding them or destroying them (nice folks) down to the planet and take them to the part of the city where they’ll be “safe” to live out their lives. Mo brought up the fact that it is possible that Rossi had managed to escape Brand’s vigilance (which is probably easy with his low-tech). Which Brand agreed is possible which disturbs him the most as someone could be here that has already escaped (you only call someone who leaves an escapee if they are prisoners) and is dragging other back here is dangerous. So with the threat of comers and goers on this planet, Brand was willing to “help” us anyway he could. His first order of business, sending us to outsider prison! Because since we are aliens (again, look in a mirror buddy) we may be able to discover something that “his people” could not (why not go yourself?). Apparently the prisoners don’t like the rude Ganathians coming and bossing them around, strange. Winter called out The Truthseekers hypocrisy (you go girl!) by mentioning how the Ganathians seem to accept Brand despite Brand also being an alien. Brand said that his arrival was some kind of Prophesy that he didn’t resist (suprise, suprise), but didn’t try to play on them either. Brand said he merely offered his “help”, and while it took some time to earn the trust of the Ganathians, but when Brand did they soon saw “wisdom” in the words he had to offer. Eventually, these xenophobic Ganathians appointed the Human to be their leader. Brand then started going on about how it is a thankless job sometimes and how he sometimes wished he didn’t “have” to do it, but having an outside voice to guide the Ganathians [that he mentioned he has done the past ten years] has been very beneficial to them. They have seen the rewards of having Brand as a leader, brand continued to talk about himself, saying he is very fair (one lie) and just (ooh another), and a lot of the technological advancements we see in the city came from Brand providing the Ganathians with certain information they could use to enhance their rather primitive devices. Seems Outside stuff is helping them, sound good to lock it away. Brand, still talking, said that the Ganathian scientists continue to expand and explore and create new advances (well, seem more like old advances) all the time.

Brand told us that he is now very worried, because if others know about this place, and are not grounded to this planet, It is very alarming to him who else they would tell about Ganath. The Beacon of the New Era then told us, again, to go to the foreign quarter and see what we could find out. Not only that, but he wants us to infiltrate them in whatever way we could (like, does he even care if people die?) and told us we obviously would fit in. We were to see what we could learn and report back to Brand, suggesting that we could perhaps help each other (well, help him really). I had a bit of trouble holding my tongue here, and brought up the fact that should we discover how Rossi and his gang were escaping and re-entering the planet under the Skykiller’s nose, what would stop us from also using this method to leave without telling him. And the mighty Truthseeker told me, that he would just have to trust us, because being a slave sounds great. Mo whispered to me that it wasn’t a good idea to reveal your plans, but I didn’t see how Brand could really stop us, and wanted to perhaps negotiate a better deal since this arrangement gave us the power. Brand, as if in response said that our ship would be impounded and would not be trespassed upon, giving us his word (as if) that no one would touch it. Brand promised the ship would not be harmed, we just would be unable to access it. Mo thanked him afterwards (I am unsure if it was sarcasm, as we basically had our ship stolen). Brand then told us to quickly see what we can find out, come back to the castle and talk to the magistrate, who will take us back to talk to him [Brand] if he is available (what else does he do?). As we all get ready to depart, I was ready before we got here, Brand spoke one more time asking the Cerean, L’hrequ, to stay behind. L’hrequ nodded and began waiting as Winter gave a curtsy before spinning around and leaving with us close behind. Even the Magistrate and his guards accompanied us, leaving L’hrequ alone with the Skykiller. I was sure that this only meant trouble, as my father always told me that when Jedi get together, trouble always follows (which is weird, we never really met any Jedi that I know of).

3:56:24We waited outside of the throne room for ten minutes as L’hrequ and Empatojayos Brand were talking about something. When L’hrequ returned, it wasn’t really something he discussed with us. I guess L’hrequ doesn’t mind keeping the secrecy of the meeting to himself, which is honorable, but a bit disappointing. Doesn’t exactly help ease much tension. Still, it was good to see he was unharmed, for the sake of my job, of course. With the group back together, the magistrate began to lead us to the gates to the city and point us towards the Foreign Quarter where we could find someplace to rest amongst our own kind. Pand’Ora asked what the currency of the planet was, and if Imperial Credits, would be useful. Winter backed up the notion, the answer was that the Foreign Quarter employees credits, but the Ganathians use a currency known as Dookits, described as small gold coins. The magistrate condescendingly doubted us having any Dookits, mentioning that among his kind we would be poor and destitute. I kindly asked if I could at least retrieve my SugarScoot from the ship, but was denied. No one was going to be allowed back to our ship, the others kind of thought it was weird . After being rudely addressed by the magistrate to his satisfaction, we had to follow him through a maze of long twisting hallways and down a large flight of stairs that eventually opened up to the city below. Large groupings of Ganathians were wondering about their business in the city, but whenever we pass the Ganathians seem to stop and stare. The magistrate recommended that we don’t tarry around his people for long for if they call the guard, or think we’re up to no good, then it could cause an “Incident” and we wouldn’t want that. The magistrate gives us easy to follow instructions to the Foreign Quarter, telling us that it would still take about fifteen minutes to get there. I mention we could get out of his people’s way faster with my Scooter, but he doesn’t even react. Mo set right out, and the others followed suit as the Magistrate sat watching us leave and scribbling on his little tablet.

We clearly weren’t in too much of a rush to get to our new prison, and Winter took her time to take in all of her surroundings. Examining the thick steam being released from all the building, the strange ships, and the people who merely stair at us like we are mad-men. Winter was very pleasant, but the Ganathians only looked scared, insulted, or angry. And I thought a smile was a universally good sign. Soon, we came to a vastly different piece of the city. Almost like their was an invisible barrier separating the segments of the city, it goes from the old-fashioned tech to more what we’d expect on any normal planet (no offense to the planets less civilized, this one is just the worst). It was equally bustling with businesses, but it was all run by species not from this planet. As we entered, Pand’Ora noticed a singular individual that seemed to take a large interest in our group, a Kubaz. As soon as the Kubaz noticed he was notice, Pand’Ora dashed off after him! Trying to react, we all dashed after her towards the ally that the Kubaz had fled to. Pand’Ora turned into the alley, just a long path with no door or windows that lead to a dead end. The Kubaz was no where to be seen. Pand’Ora expected that perhaps some sort of invisibility might have been used, and used her goggles to try to scan the area for other signatures (like heat). The walls, however, were low enough that could be climbed, but Winter believe that it may be a hidden door of somekind. We all began to search around, but no one could turn up anything. If a door was hidden here, it was going to stay that way for now. L’hrequ asked if Rossi was the one we were chasing after, but Pand’Ora was still focused on catching her prey, and began to try climbing the wall utilizing her claws. Unfortunatly, the plaster was too thick for her claws to help much, and it was too smooth for her to get over the top. Seeing that the chase was over, L’hrequ asked again if it was Rossi. Pand’ora said no, and described the Kubaz in his black cloak to the party, and Winter and her surmised that Rossi probably was going to know that we had arrived.

With nothing else to do in the alley (and it being roughly noon), we all headed back to the street and back to figuring out what direction we should go first. Being new blood to the Foreign Quarter did make us interesting for the current residents, and we soon found ourselves with the attention of a young rodian woman. She stayed at a distance, her eyes only for L’hrequ who began walking towards her. Embarrassed, it appeared like the young rodian would try to flee, but she froze in a panic as L’hrequ told her to wait. The young rodian apologized for staring, and L’hrequ said it was alright wondering if he had, perhaps, reminded her of someone. The young rodian said no, but that it was because it had been such a long time since she had seen a Cerean, presuming that we must be new here because of that fact. L’hrequ asked if she, too was new, to which the young rodian said no, and when asked for how long she guessed it was probably been about 5 years. L’hrequ was curious if the yound rodian was happy here, and (shockingly) she said she is happier than she was. Apparently, she used to spend a lot of time in space with her family, but she likes being on planet for a change, telling us that Ganath isn’t bad. The young rodian described it as “pretty”, “rains now and then.” L’hrequ asked how old the young rodian was and she said that she was 14, and for some reason included that she was old enough to be wed. L’hrequ then assumed that the young rodian had arrived to the planet before maturity, but the young rodian said that wasn’t correct as her species matures quickly. L’hrequ pondered if she missed her family, and the young rodian told us that her mother was here and her father passed away not long ago. L’hrequ deduced that she didn’t like space, and the young rodian agreed, believing that living in space is no way to live. The young rodian prefers the sun and the stars, when you can see them. When asked if the young rodian found the Emperor fair, she said that the Emperor was and that she understood why they were all stuck on the planet. The Emperor, the young rodian continued, could have had them all killed and the locals would probably like it, she noticed that the Ganathians don’t tend to like outsiders and brought up that the Emperor was an outsider once, she had heard the story. However, the young rodian doubted that the Emperor being a Jedi (when L’hrequ brought up that he had heard such stories). The young rodian believed that the stories of the Emperor’s magical tricks (like moving things with his eyes) were produced to just make the Emperor sound more scary. At this time, the young rodian asked who the rest of us were and L’hrequ merely told her that we are his companions. The young rodian asked if we had all just arrived here, but L’hrequ told her that it was merely an assumption in a city so large. The young rodian, however, was determined to make her point. Mentioning that while there were several humans and droids here, she had only seen a few Toydarians (mentioning that they were usually rude, but smelled nice) [I can’t blame Toydarians for being rude here, it seems to be the native etiquette of choice], she believe she may have seen her kind (pointing at Pand’Ora) before [but her mother told her it was a wookiee]. L’hrequ laughed and wondered if the other one she saw was another color, to which the young rodian seemed positive that the other one she saw was brown (which, unfortunately didn’t match Rossi who is black-furred).

However, catching on that we seemed to be looking for someone in particular, the young rodian did mention that their may be someone who could help us. Pointing at a tavern, the young rodian mentioned that it was a building filled with a rough sort of people (and her mother doesn’t want her to go there), but inside was usually a Bothan named Deekan who is said to know everything. L’hrequ thanked her for the good information, kindess and candor, and Winter seemed to be riffling through her stuff as if she wanted to reward her with something. The young rodian said that her assistance was no problem, and that she like meeting new people, especially nice ones. L’hrequ mentioned that perhaps we would see her around, and the young rodian said that she hoped to see us around and remarked that L’hrequ is very handsome (huh?). L’hrequ told her that it was very nice of her to say that, and then the young rodian said she really liked his braid and asked to touch it. L’hrequ let her do so, I was flabbergasted, as the young rodian started petting and playing with L’hrequ’s hair. After a strange silence watching this happen, the young rodian then asked if L’hrequ had a mate! I congratulated L’hrequ, calling him Larry, and gave him a friendly elbow to the side. L’hrequ told her that he did not, which made the young rodian quickly ask if he would like one (looking very serious). L’hrequ tried to angle his way out of this, asking if the young rodian was asking because she saw another Cerean on Ganath. Unfortunately for L’hrequ, it was not for that reason. Instead, the young rodian said she was asking because she felt L’hrequ is handsome and seems like a nice gentleman, and since he didn’t have a mate he should have one. L’hrequ was pleasant telling the young rodian that it was very kind and sweet of her, but that he was not seeking a mate at this time, adding that on his planet marriage is usually set up by their parents (well, L’hrequ said the ones who gave you life). The young rodian, a bit disappointed, apologized that his parents got to choose for him and that she meant no offense with her offer. L’hrequ said he took none, and that she was very kind (which was different from other he had met). Forlorn, the young rodian mentioned that she would then keep looking.

Finally, L’hrequ asked for the young rodian’s name and we were told that it was Ophallia. L’hrequ said that it was nice to meet her, and Ophallia said it was nice to meet him and his friends mentioning that we were very quiet. I laughed, and said I didn’t want to get in the way of a proposal. At this, Ophallia wished us a good day and added, to L’hrequ, if he changed his mind he could find her at her home (As she pointed it out in the distance. L’hrequ then said that they could always be friends without it leading to a binding courtship, which caused Ophallia interjected that it could before bidding our farewells and walking off.

L’hrequ seemed a seemed a bit shaken from the offer, but luckily Winter was there with positive news, mentioning that if we got stuck here forever and there were no female Cereans L’hrequ had an option. This comment made L’hrequ shoot Winter a look that could only be described as one you’d give a person who just stuck a frog in their mouth (a very confused look). Still, we had a mission to undergo, and we began heading toward the cantina that Ophallia had described to us. As we walked along the path, Mo said that he would like one of L’hrequ’s future tadpoles.

Eventually we arrived at the Stranded Cantina (As the sign on its walls told us). There was no doorman on duty, at least not at this time. Despite it being only about 1 or 2 in the afternoon, it seemed awfully dark within the Cantina’s walls. Surprisingly, the cantina seemed rather busy as well. The building itself was quite large with various tables and a stage. The current band was lead by a Twi’lek female performing a sad slow song in her native language, which made the song sound even more haunting. Most of the serving girls were also Twi’leks, as they walked around the dining area serving the wide menagerie of species that occupied it. Behind the bar, there was a strange aquarium-like construction with a female of as species I didn’t recognize, with a humanoid upper-body, a tentacled head, and the lower-body of an eel. The inhabitants and barkeep turned to us to as we entered, the barkeep a Puuan who was eyeing us expectantly. After taking their gazes, they soon all went back to their drinks and business. At the bar was a Bothan stirring a bluish looking drink with a seemingly perpetual scowl, and sitting to his left was a very big and heavy Ortolan, odd that this one was easily the size of Pand’Ora (I’ve only seen a few with the hutts, but they were usually about my size). This ortolan was sitting close to the Bothan, and it seemed the two were present at the bar together), only the ortolan appeared rather bored as he merely leaned on the bar’s counter.

L’hrequ pulled the group aside and said that it would probably not be wise to approach the two as a group (saying that we would be intimidating approaching as one unit, and that it would make us obvious). Winter wasn’t sure on that (and Pand’Ora already mentioned that we were already obvious), but they decided to take L’hrequ’s advice. Winter decided to take Pand’Ora and Mo with her as L’hrequ and I would get us all a table. I thought about offering my assistance, but my stomach needed some assistance of its own, so I told them that I would begin to order the food. For some reason they all laughed at that. We split up, and I am a little bit unsure exactly how their conversation went down. But from what I’ve been told Winter introduced herself and her companions (Pand’Ora and Mo). Afterwards, she mentioned that she was looking for a male Togorian which apparently Deekan took as Winter looking for a particular kind of “companion” (how desperate are the people of Ganath?). Winter ignored the implications and said she was looking for a Togorian in particular, and when asked who the lucky man was, Winter told him it was Rossi. Deekan then tried to tell him that he didn’t know who Rossi was, but that looking for him would be easier for the right price, but the others saw through his lie and figured he did know. Winter assured him that Rossi was here, and was actually expecting them. Deekan said that it was strange since he could swear they had the smell of newcomer on them so how would Rossi know they were coming? Winter then told him that Rossi had invited them to come, to which Deekan said that they must be pretty important. Winter began to call out Deekan’s lie, saying that she believe that he was probably pretty important and already knew who Rossi was. Deekan tried to played her off, but Winter mentioned that his name was the first she received on the planet. Winter said he was too modest. When Deekan asked why they were looking for Rossi, and Winter told him that Rossi had taken her brother and she was going to get him back. Deekan asked if Winter’s brother was in a gang, to which she told him no and that he was just her innocent brother. Deekan doubted anyone’s innocence.

After some banter about litter size or something, Deekan admitted that seeing Rossi was not going to be easy. As first off, only people who were in his gang could see him. Second off, to join the gang one had to undergo an initiation. Third off, the initiation wasn’t going to be easy. But, if they were willing to do this initiation, and pass, then “maybe” if Deekan was in a good mood he would take them to Rossi. Pand’Ora then tried to pressure Deekan, asking for a free pass since she was Rossi’s wife. Deekan, however, held his resolve (despite his widening eyes), and brought up the fact that if Pand’Ora were truly his mate, then Rossi had gone to great lengths to avoid her. Pand’Ora reminded him that she, too, was invited here, but still Deekan held his ground saying that it sounded like something out of some old novel. When Deekan asked why Pand’Ora was invited, she said that it was to get Winter’s brother, and Deekan doubted it and wouldn’t lead them to Rossi without doing the initiation. Then Pand’Ora told Deekan that she would be sure to tell Rossi of how rude and Ineffective Deekan was, and Mo added something about Rossi perhaps letting Deekan become his witch or something (not sure it was hard to hear). Deekan told them that he was just doing his job, and brought his rarely talking companion (the Ortolan) named Orto who didn’t talk much [probably to try to threaten them]. Winter then, with even Pand’Ora’s request being denied, decided to ask about the hierarchy of the gang (saying it was so she could give everyone in the group their appropriate respect [what a nice woman]), to which she was told that Rossi is the bossy and there was nothing else to it. Everyone else is second fiddle or lower. Then Deekan went on a rant about how he only does one job (and isn’t a messenger or receptionist) and does it well. I only let new people in the gang who pass the test. If you pass, you can enter, if not you either die or are rejected. Winter said she didn’t exactly want to join the gang, and Deekan wished her luck in finding another way or in Rossi coming to find them. Deekan said that Rossi is a big man with big plans, apparently he talks to the big guy all the time and gets big plans (BIG PLANS) all the time. When Winter asked who the Big man was, Deekan said he didn’t know and had never seen him. So Deekan said it was up to them, but seemed confident that his way was the only way.

At this impasse, Winter decided to instead ask if Deekan knew of a way to get off the planet. Deekan said you don’t leave Ganath unless you are with Rossi, and no one is supposed to know that. Winter assured him that Deekan’s secret was safe with her. And with that, they bid their farewells and Winter said that she would be speaking to him soon. With a wave good-bye to Orto, they rejoined us at our booth. They were greeted to a lot of food, unfortunately no slime-mold, and informed me of what I have detailed above. L’hrequ said that while we would not kill innocents, anything shy of that could be fair game (if necessary). Winter sort of hinted that it could lead to them killing everyone in Rossi’s gang. L’hrequ said that the trial sounds difficult, but as long as they weren’t harming innocents we could do them. Mo seemed assured it was probably the only way. Winter, however, wanted to explore around the Foreign Quarter first to see if anyone has seen her brother, and she provided us with a picture as well to assist in it. L’hrequ was worried that perhaps Deekan would leave without telling him that we are interested. Eyeing Deekan and Orto, they seemed to stick around the same spot. Every once in awhile someone would come up and whipser something to them, but otherwise they stayed put. Orto did seemed to be keeping his eyes on us, however, as he would often gaze our way for large stints of time before turning away. Winter, however, said she didn’t like the power balance here and accepting the deal would give Rossi all of the power. L’hrequ and Mo believe that they Rossi was going to have it anyways so it wasn’t something to worry about. I agreed with Winter, however, and pointed out that we were stuck in this miserable town anyways so we might as well look around, no one was going to go anywhere. Winter and I listed off some possible options (people to bribe for information on the initiation, gang members to discover, the town itself, and perhaps even The Truthseeker himself].

When I brought up Emperor Brand, Winter said that her plan with him was to tell him that Rossi was getting on and off the planet, and perhaps even how. And, in giving the Emperor this important information, then Brand would just let us go on our way (as if). L’hrequ also believed that Winter’s plan may be a bit optimistic, saying that the only way off or on was through Rossi. I told them that if, for some reason we did want to tell Brand how Rossi did it, we did discover how it is done we could use it and send a message to Brand after our escape. L’hrequ also brought up that from his private “negotiations,” as he called them, with Brand, Brand told him that he would think about L’hrequ advice to let us go, but L’hrequ was not convinced. L’hrequ believe that surely Brand had thought of such things before and had still not changed his mind. L’hrequ even said that he did not ask to leave. Winter said so too, but was hoping that Brand would reward them with freedom afterwards. And Mo brought up a good point that we would need out ship. Winter added that we could escape with Rossi, but to get the Bucket, we would have to go through the Emperor. So we decided to split up and look for clues on Asher. Mo went to go talk with the droids having seen a droid community within the foreign quarter (and droids here feel equal to all the other prisoners on the planet). L’hrequ went to Ophallia, asking her if she had seen Asher. Winter went to a local beauty salon, and Pand’Ora joined her. I didn’t really have a clue, but figured the natives may be a good source of information, but none of them seemed to linger near the gates to the Foreign Quarter (are none of them curious?) so I just went around town talking to people and showing Asher’s picture. None of us had too much luck with our investigations, while it felt like a good venture, it seems like no one has seen her brother within the quarter. Mo, however, wasn’t asking about Asher. Instead, he was searching for information on how to get to Rossi without going through his gang (if there was even a way). Interfacing with a silver C-series protocol droid labeled C-221, he learns that while Rossi is known to most underworld zones, Rossi hasn’t actually ever been seen in the Foreign Quarter. C-221 believes that Rossi operates someplace else on the planet, getting gang members from the desperate newcomers seeking a way off the planet. These newcomers all go to Deekan in the Stranded Cantina, where, if they pass, they are never seen again. However, if the newcomers fail the initiation their bodies are found horribly burned and occasionally missing limbs (and always dead). Apparently, those who enter the Stranded Cantina to undergo the initiation never exit the cantina. The droids also mentioned that Rossi, himself, had a boss (confirming the big boss Deekan spoke about). Mo asked if their was a local security force for the district, and was told that their wasn’t. Rather, there is an unspoken rule to not rock the boat. L’hrequ also investigated the Kubaz that Pand’Ora had spied spying on us earlier. Seems that his informer didn’t know who the Kubaz was. In fact, all that was know was that the Kubaz watches and then reports to someone inside the cantina.

Seems we still are being pushed to join the gang, but I’ve had my fill with gang work in the past. We do have the Kubaz’s ally as one potential lead, and a whole bunch of town to explore. I can’t imagine Rossi works too far away, as it would be much to difficult to gather new members…unless the new blood report to someone else. Still, I’d prefer to avoid doing Rossi’s dirty work for him. I’ll keep you informed how this plays out.

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The hunt is on...

After the battle and a round of first aid to my squishy friends, L’hrequ looks for the first thug he had taken down with his new light weapon. Sure enough, the poor sod was still crawling away from the scene, a few yards only from the warehouse. He tells me on the comm. that the man is quite hurt. I join them and start healing the critically wounded man. L’hrequ asks more information about Rossi’Ora , the Togorian who hired them. According to the thug, it was supposed to be easy, they didn’t expect to meet such resistance. The human mercenary also explains that he and his crew were hired by the Togo especially for this job, that they were supposed to then go to his place on Ganath and work for him (he supposedly have a fast ship). We let him go. We loot the group the leave.

We research the planet Ganath. It is actual a theoretical/mythical planet. Theories abound around this place. Soncho recognizes it from stories when it was a child: Gamaku , the Toydarian version of hell… However we know nothing about its exact location.

Winter calls our informant Waroon Dak. She explains Rossi was never on the Wheel, and neither was her brother. She explains we are looking for planet Ganath. According to him, there are plenty of stories about it, with treasures and good fortune to whom would find them. Waroon Dak doesn’t know where it is either, but he explains he’ll contact his people to get more info and get back to us (the usual).

We resell a bunch of weapons taken from the defeated mercenaries, at the same kid’s store we’ve been before, the one with the killer battle droid (I trust her). He’s a nice young man, a bit naïve to survive in such a place. Good thing his father left the droid as his bodyguard, I doubt anyone will mess with him as long as she’s with him (yes, I know it’s a she. Don’t ask). We collect 704 credits for our hard work, then head back to the Bucket. The others rest while I work on the Speeder bike with Toto.

Soncho and Winter Pax (under a disguise) leave to do some shopping together. I tell Toto to follow them and report in case of trouble, which puts Pand’Ora ‘s pack instinct at ease. They look for Pod Racing information, it seems it’s a thing here. They are told that Cheeto (a famous racer I guess) is sleeping at this time, and that they should come back next morning. Winter looks for more information about her brother Asher , with Soncho ’s help.

Around 1 am, the Wheel’s local news report an explosion on level 13. The explosion was centered on a hotel, which is mostly destroyed. Now we know what Brak meant… A smoky/hazy footage shows two stormtroopers moving through the area right after the blast, then closing a door behind them. There are a lot of civilian casualties, it is terrible. We regroup at the site and are stopped by the Wheelsec droids from approaching. I’d like to help the victims with my Medic subroutines, but the Wheel’s EMT teams are already on it and we can’t pass the security cordon.

Winter approaches one of the local security officers. We learn that some children were among the casualties, as well as some personnel in grey or white armor (Imperial?). The security detail does not believe there were stormtroopers. L’hrequ asks Soncho to perform a diversion while he uses his “powers” to sneak by the security droids. Soncho distracts one of them by pretending to be a medic, part of the relief effort, and starts searching for credentials through his numerous pockets when asked… Meanwhile, L’hrequ and Pand sneak inside the building (I’m amazed that someone that big can go undetected so easily. She is related to cats indeed). The inside of the building is in ruins, the explosion must have been quite powerful… There are body parts everywhere also… L’hrequ uses his thermograph goggles to look for the explosion epicenter: it’s definitely the lobby. They cannot find any stormtroopers corpses. They explore the place, but there isn’t much left to see or use. They think they see movement in the room behind the counter. They sneak toward the location; but the movement turns out to be light fixture hanging and rocking from the ceiling. It’s however an office with an undamaged. L’hrequ turns the computer on, but it’s password protected. I recommend via the radio to shut it down and bring it to me. They exit the hotel through a back alley.

We meet them back at the ship. I start hacking the computer with brute force decryption. The inferior mind of the device is no match for my mad subroutinz! The device’s security is quite good, but I crack it like a nut, and it is an Imperial computer indeed. The system lists all the imperial operatives that were or are staying in this hotel. This place is a spy nest: there are at least 12 of them at the moment (some of them are probably dead by now). One of them, codename 616, camed accompanied by a full platoon of forty Stormtroopers!

L’hrequ learns through the Holonet that there is no current direction of the Wheel since the last director died. Is the Empire controlling this place from behind the scene? According to the stolen computer, the mission is an observation one only. There is a list of people they were keeping an eye on, and we’re all on it (except Soncho ). They know we have bounty on our heads. We also find Waroon Dak and Remo on their watch list. We decide to give the computer to the former. The organics head back to bed to rest.

In the morning the final death count is at 68 people. We have a message from Dak to go see him. Winter puts her face on. We all go to the mostly empty bar (it’s quite early). We are escorted to Dak’s private booth, and meet him while he is having breakfast. He has good and bad news:

- The hacker I’m looking for is quite evasive. They need more time to find a lead.
- About Ganath, the planet we are looking for: it does exist, but according to some it us hidden by a massive radiation cloud. If that’s true, environmental suits will be needed by all of us for protection against that hazard. Other rumors claim that it’s a paradise inhabited by a xenophobic people. It is also inside of Hut space, which makes it hazardous to reach. Dak also has rough coordinates, so we can head over there.

We give the laptop to Waroon Dak and provide information we learned. He is very happy about this. Waroon Dak knew there were rumors about the Imperial presence on the Wheel but had no proof. Here it is, on a plater. Dak thinks the bomb’s objective was to bring attention to the Empire’s presence rather than eliminating them. Otherwise, why bomb the hotel’s lobby?

We shop before leaving for Ganath . We buy space suits and breathers for everyone. We are ready to go at 9am. I prepare the astrogation route without a hitch, then Soncho takes the ship out with ease through a very busy traffic. We fly in Hyperspace for 3 days.

As we get off FTL, we find a red planet, surrounded by a strange Aurora Borealis effects. The sensors do not even detect the planet, and we notice that it has no moon. We however detect four small ships with a curious design, approaching us. They seem armed. We turn the shields on. There is a lethal level of radiation surrounding the ship also, as we approach. I call everyone to battle station. Pand’ and L’hrequ head for the turrets, Winter for the firing solutions console. We are hailed, asked to be escorted down to the planet, in the name of Emperor Ematogayos Brand ! We decide to comply; they surround us with great agility. They send landing coordinates to us, with a very old fashioned protocol. It takes the Bucket 15 minutes to get to the coordinates, under escort. As we approach, L’hrequ explains that this emperor’s name is known to him. If he is the same person, Brand was a Jedi Knight, supposedly slain 10 years ago by Darth Vader.

The cloud gets thicker, until we even lose sight of our escort. As we get lower, radiation level is spiking and the ship shakes because of turbulences. However, after 60 seconds of descent, we see a blue ocean, a luscious continent and a huge city!? The radiation level drops to nothing instantly!! The planet looks like it’s out of a steampunk Holostory. Our escort ships are now using propellers to stay in the air. We finally see a landing pad. There is a lot of steam in the air, lowering visibility dramatically. Two dozen people are waiting for us on the pad. Blimps and flying sailboats powered by props or jet engines are flying around us. The technology around us is very primitive but quite functional.

We remove our unnecessary space suits, and exit the ship. We are approached by guards wearing “steam backpacks and face masks.” There are a lot of them: 40 or so. An alien with a large head, small beady eyes and angular features, approaches us and talks. He writes down on his paper pad with a feather quill as we give our names. Winter explains why we’re here. It seems the man is a Magistrate or importance (mostly of the –self kind I believe). He tells us we are going to meet the Emperor “who is fair, and sometimes merciful.”

We are escorted by many guard to the Emperor’s palace. The place is massive and impressive. Someone or something is hovering above the stairs leading to the throne. The room seems like it was built by or for giants. We follow the magistrate toward the floating shape, which turns out to be Brand himself: the emperor has no legs nor hands and floats above the floor. Cybernetic devices end his amputated limbs. From his face, he is human… Were he complete, he’d be six foot tall. As we reach the stairs, the Magistrate tells us to kneel. We do, then the magistrate, but not the guards. The Emperor apologizes for our poor reception; they do not receive many guests.

We explain Winter Pax ‘s brother’s story, with Rossi being the source of our woes. The Emperor seems to react when the Togorian is mentioned. He thinks hard for a while, then tells us to rise. He asks what we intend to do when we find our brother, then tells us we can’t be allowed to leave the planet no matter what, lest we bring back more people. The Emperor explains that the locals as xenophobic and an influx of outsider would turn their society into chaos. We are therefore trapped here… The Emperor has sworn to defend this planet and will not let us leave. He is disturbed that Rossi could get in and out without him knowing, and he wonders why the Togorian chose this planet for his actions.

The Emperor recommends that we go to the foreign quarter to look for Rossi. As we get ready to depart, the Emperor wants L’hrequ to stay a bit longer and talk with him in private. We leave the two of them to talk.

After an insane amount of time (enough for me to complete 3925 Sudokus), L’hrequ joins us and the Magistrate escorts us to the gate leading to the foreign quarter. He explains that his people use Gold Ducats for currency, but credit is used in the Foreign Quarter. After a fifteen minutes’ walk through a very primitive city populated by autochthones we reach the foreign quarter. A change in scenery indicates we have arrived: no more locals, but a wide mix of alien species. The place looks like a Mos Eisli market. Pand’ notices that a Kubaz wearing a cloak seems very interested in us. She bolts to follow him as he turns around and runs away. We follow her. She ends up in a dead end and he alien is nowhere to be found. It is noon-ish, we decide to look for a place to look for information. We get the information from a young female Rhodian named Ophalia who looks at L’hrequ intently. She has been here for a long time, 5 years indeed. She is happier here than she ever was before, spending her former life in the confines of a ship. She informs us that there is a cantina with rough people where we could find the intel we are looking for. There, a Bofin called Deaken knows everyone in the Quarter and may be able to help us. Ophalia then hits pretty obviously on L’hrequ, who politely declines the offer.

We get to the place, called the Stranded Cantina. There is no doorman, so we just get straight in. It’s dark inside, and quite packed with customers. A band plays a slow, sad song. The bar has a large aquarium, in which a female amphibian alien is swimming. We locate Deaken , sitting at the bar and drinking a blue cocktail. A large Ortolan bodyguard sits next to the Boffin, a rifle slung over his shoulder. Pand’ , Winter Pax and I approach the Boffin, the others pretending to be on their own, and ordering food from a booth. Winter Pax explans she is looking for a Togorian. Deaken is quite sleazy and thinks she is looking for some kind of furry prostitute (I heard this is a thing among class A pervert organics). When we mention Rossi ‘s name, Deaken claims he hasn’t heard from him (or pretends so). After we call bullshit, Deaken explains that to meet Rossi, one has to join his gang, which means taking a very tough potentially deadly initiation. If we pass, he’ll take us to Rossi. To save time, Pand’ drops the A-Bomb, explaining she’s the Togorian’s wife and that Rossi would want to see her. We learn that Rossi ’s the kingpin, and Deaken the recruiter for the gang. He won’t make any exception for anyone, the initiation trials are the only way to get to our objective.

We gather to discuss options. Winter Pax wants to check around to learn if Asher was seen in the Foreign Quarter at all (I seriously doubt it). No one has seen the brother at all. I inquire with the local droids, who have their own Union here, as they consider themselves the equals of organics here. Not bad… I talk to a silver protocol droid who explains that Rossi is the kingpin here. People who are desperate to leave the planet end up talking to Deaken . If they take the initiation to join the nameless gang led by Rossi, they then disappear: either they join the gang and no one ever sees them again, or they die during the initiation. It seems that Rossi’ answers to someone else: Deaken referred to him as the big guy… The Foreign Quarter has about 300 people living in it. The city has more than 100,000 total. The corpses found have typically been terribly burnt, with often missing body parts.

It seems that this Initiation would be the only way to get to our quarry. Winter is not thrilled by the idea to be forced to do that, but it seems that Rossi ‘s gang has all the cards. I think the only alternate would be to put together a surveillance of the Cantina and try to follow the bread crumb trail to the Togorian. This would be very difficult as well, because we are new here, but we are resourceful.

Once again we are so close, and yet so far from our objective. I turn down my frustration by 20% and move on to planning our next step.

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Poncho's Logs 1.1
Mission: Rescue Asher on the Wheel

…Initializing …

Password: * * * * *

…Processing…

… Scanning Fingerprint…

… Identity Confirmed…

Welcome Poncho :)

Creating New Folder: The Mission…

→ Report: Day 1 | 1800 – 2000 Hours

Writing reports sounds easier than one thinks, at least until you realize that you only have three fingers. Lucky, Nancy taught me how to write basic so I can at least accommodate.

Right, the mission. Well, my new friend Mr. Dak wants me to help out a group of people. Says they are his friends too, and need a pilot. I’ve done taxi in the past, so it shouldn’t be too much trouble. So long as they just need transport. Given I’ve only ever left Toydaria, I don’t really know hyperspace that well.. that is what it’s called yes. I’d assume Mr. Dak informed them of such…though maybe I should tell them?

The group looked like something out of Nar Shadda, a mattering of different aliens and even a robot. I flew over to introduce myself, and the human took the first shake. Her name was Winter Pax, and she had lovely white hair, but didn’t seem at an age for such. Her handshake was strong, sign of a negotiator, and her sapphire eyes had a certain intensity to them. Fortunately, she seems quite pleasant.

Another was not a alien I recognized, I was told she is Togorian. Giant seems right, or giant kitty. Pandora (I’m told its Pand’Ora) was easily two of me, and I’m a big toydarian. Her golden fur was rather soft despite her fierce build. Though she seemed a bit distracted by something most of the time, her green eye bobbing back and forth. I wonder what is was?

The robot was model M0-F0, I think I’ll call it Mo. I’m no expert on droids, but I don’t think I’ve seen a model like its, almost was a walking fortress. Though, it seemed to like clothes and it had a cute hat on. Mo would probably bother my father, very direct, but that can work with me.

The last man was La-wreck, LA-rook, well I’m told its spelled L’Hreque. He seemed almost human, but had an almost conical forehead. Probably has a hard time finding a hat like Mo’s that could stay on. The cone was decorated by a ponytail of grey hair, though I’, sure he had more hair in his goatee. His blue eyes appeared as if he was gauging me all the time. Still seems nice, but doesn’t like to shake hands.

Perhaps the most intimidating thing was the weaponry that Mo and Pand’Ora had. Mighty blasters that could probably melt through a door. I do hope they don’t need to be used that often, they do seem pretty shiny. I’m not all that good in a blaster show, I’ve got Nancy (I feel I should note its not my friend by the firearm I named after her), but I mostly use here to pretend I know how to use it….not really for shooting. Maybe they do the same?

Apparently, it was as I was told. Originally they were traveling with someone named Brak, but that person had to follow a lead to a ship or something. Must’ve been important, and I know all about chasing after a dream. Hopefully though that fellow doesn’t end up under the thumb of a crime lord though. Mr. Dak had a letter from this Brak, and handed it to them. It was some rather heartfelt good-byes and a warning to avoid level 13.

The group had come to ask Mr. Dak for some information on someone named Rossi and a meeting they had with him. I don’t think they liked Rossi much, Pand’Ora seemed to growl at the mention of Rossi, and Winter seemed mighty worried. Unfortunately, while Mr. Dak could get the info, the timing would make things rather expensive. However, Mr. Dak did introduce me to the group as a pilot. It’s defiantly intimidating to replace another pilot, especially for space travel. Their ship is a YT-1300 named Silver Bucket, good to see I’m not the only one that names vehicles cute names. I’ve got my little SugarScoot scooter in my room. Mo showed me some of the specs on his datapad and I hope I looked excited, I don’t really know my spaceships, but this one looked good. I think. Apparently, she (the ship) is very resourceful!
Mo was seeking a hacker to help him with something too, and asked Mr. Dak to help him find this person. Mr. Dak agreed and Mo offered the usual finders fee (I’d comment on it, but I don’t know what it is [and no negotiations either]).

The meeting that the party had with Rossi was going to happen soon on level 20, warehouse 66 on the wheel. Apparently, it was to be the area where a negotiation was to be hosted. The deal, Winter in exchange for her brother, Asher. They seemed to have a good relationship According to Pand’Ora, her husband [Rossi] (of whom she seeks to kill) was a low-life on her planet. Rossi seems to be a slaver of some kind, selling whole villages of his fellows as slaves. I wonder if he does deals with the Hutts? Still, Rossi doesn’t sound like a nice person at all.

Mr. Dak was able to pull up a schematic of the warehouse for us, apparently it had no owner information (what trader wouldn’t claim his storage?). It seemed to be pretty standard, as far warehouses go. Lots of boxes of this or that. Their were multiple entrances, one on each side (and two on the main side if you count the loading door). And a few ventilation ducts on the farther end about my size. In fact…I can just place it here:

warehouse66.jpg

After we finished discussing the plans of the warehouse, the conversation became more merry and eating was to be done. L’hrequ (I really should shorten it to Larry) seemed a bit astonished at my appetite. I could see him eyeing me as I gulped my food. I’m more shocked at his appetite, does his species survive off of drinks alone? Works for me though, more food on our travels! Mo asked how Mr. Dak and I met, and Mr. Dak explained that he was always on the look for good pilots, and saw my work which led him to picking me up. It was a mutually benefital agreement, as I wanted off my planet (didn’t tell them it was Nar Shaddaa). However, he also explained it was my first job and asked I be treated well. A very basic explanation, but it would do. Nice of him to ask them to look after me though, how dangerous was this going to be? I was warned that Mo may be a bit abrasive, but I have yet to really see that.

At about 7 PM, we had all finished eating (well, most of us I could have used another helping of fish). We started discussing the plan for dealing with Rossi. L’hrequ seemed a bit unsure about killing Rossi (preferring he be brought to justice). Pand’Ora was alright with that, telling L’hrequ that she would kill him (I suppose leaving the guilt off of L’hrequ). Winter, while mentioning she would normally agree, said that Rossi crossed a line taking her brother and was ok with Rossi’s death. However, Winter did note that her main priority was rescuing her brother. Seems, it was going to be pretty dangerous.

The set up so far was that Winter and Mo would enter for the meeting, but Winter was hoping the rest of her friends would follow in somehow like hidden in a crate or something. There weren’t any balconies or upper levels, which prevented coming from above, or at least hiding there. Winter asked me if I would assist, granting that this mission was a bit out of the “pilot” range. I didn’t mind helping (in fact, I’m sure I had to), but I didn’t want them to think of some some gunslinger. Nancy is accurate, but I’m not. Winter told me she appreciated help of any kind, but L’hrequ commented that at the very least I would be another target….gulp, and I thought I was supposed to be worried about Mo. When Winter asked about my skills, I let her know about my determination, negotiation skills (no where near my father however), and my luck [which does seem to be on my side most of the time…well besides that crash]. L’hrequ began to describe Toydarian facts…I felt awkward.

Winter brought up the idea of entering in a crate, and something about L’hrequ appearing invisible to them (that seems weird, stealth suit?). However, L’hrequ didn’t seem to confident that would work for a long time. He offered to enter with them, but then scamper off to a hiding place. Winter liked the idea of sending them inside the warehouse as a crate (a particularly large crate) and Mo added that they could plan on sending the crate ahead of time so they were both in position. L’hrequ was not too keen on the tight conditions, but eventually agreed. Mo was able to get into the computer and then change the shipping manifest to make the party’s crate replace another delivery. I offered to use the ventilation system to get in, as my skills in detecting lies could make me seeing Rossi a boon.

With a plan in motion, we all went to their docking bay to construct the crate. Pand’ora was excited to get in the box, and was more than willing to hold onto Mo’s rifle for him (it was the size of me). Additionally, Mo removed his clothes and hat to appear more droid-y, and packed a blaster into his medical backpack (I didn’t know he was a doctor). Winter prepared her blaster as well (And said she had a 22 Defender hidden away on her). I got to see the Silver Bucket as well, looked like a good enough ship. As we were setting up the crate, we discussed me sneaking into the vents and using my comm to tell them what the scene looked like. Agreeing, and setting up our contact information, I scampered off to find my entrance.

Wandering across the Wheel (which takes forever without my SugarScoot) I managed to find the little ally-like path to the vent access. People were walking by constantly, and I wasn’t sure what the laws on such things are like here, so I tried to get in quietly. Being quiet was fine, but getting the grate open quietly was a problem for me. Eventually, I did get the grate open (without dropping it or anyone noticing), tied my syntherope on the bars and flew in, pulling the grate back into place behind me before taking my rope back and starting my crawl.

It was a tight fit, with my belly being so round…I should have skipped that second helping of fish. Though, of course, thinking about fish made me hungry again. With a little effort I managed to pull myself to the top of the vent, where I could see into the warehouse. Looking around, it appeared I arrived early. Which is good. Currently, about ten warehouse workers (at least I guess that is what they were) setting things up. I even saw the crate containing L’hrequ and Pand’ora enter and be put to one side. Soon, the employees slowly shuffled out of the room and things fell quiet for awhile. That was until I heard the door below me open and some people shuffled in. I didn’t see the giant cat-man as I was expecting, but rather a group of four humans and even two jawas (I believe that’s what they are called anyways, Hutts used to talk about them). The group mostly spread among the crates in the warehouse in an attempt to spring a surprise on Winter and Mo (I was guessing anyways), except for two of them who brought a certain crate off of a pile and put in in the center of the room where they waited. Thinking ahead, I used my datapad to snap footage to send the others so they knew about the trap ahead of time.

Soon, Winter and Mo entered the room (still no Rossi, however,) and approached the two men that stood next to the crate. The men behind the crate implied that Asher was trapped inside the crate that the two men had, when Winter asked where he was. Additionally, they were told to wait for Rossi. So we waited more…and more… and to be fair I was in that vent for over an hour now and my stomach was starting to rumble something awful. So I began to snack on some of my rations. Luckily their gooey texture didn’t make too much noise.

Eventually, one of the humans got a call and began talking to someone. The man said that they were here (assuming Mo and Winter) and then the man got a crooked smile on his face. Seeing a twinge in his arm, I noticed he was going to go for his gun and called out a warning as the firefight began! It was hectic, and I’m not really sure all that went on, I’m no soldier. Jawa’s hopped out of their hiding places and shot nets or something out of their rifles that tied up Winter, but Mo was able to avoid them. Soon, our crate burst open and Mo’s rifle flew out and into the droid’s arms he proceeded to begin blasting the enemy down. The energy seemed intense, but only seemed to knock out their targets. Pand’Ora joined in with the blasting, but her heated beams showed no mercy as she shot to kill. Even more suprising, and extremely notable, was L’hrequ who flipped out of the crate and then drew a lightsaber out of its hiding place! Go invisible?! Lightsaber?! L’hrequ is a jedi!? That explained a bit, but I had to withhold my judgment (King Katuunko rest in piece as my father would say), and try to help him out.

If a Jedi was caught among us it would be bad news, so I attempted to access the cameras to cut out the footage or at least deactivate them, but…I didn’t really have a clue how to do it so I suppose I just wasted time, as the heated battled continued on the floor. Winter, trapped in some kind of electronic net blasted the man that was trying to drag her away, but was still entrapped! Seeing Winter in danger, Mo blasted the one dragging her as L’hrequ handled the men in the back with his blue-bladed lightsaber. Pand’ora blasts another one of the humans across the room with her rifle, and I just hear a mighty crash.

The jawas, sneaking around, grabbed Winter again and began dragging her to the rear-door of the warehouse. I knew I couldn’t risk shooting at them (for fear of hitting Winter with my poor training) I instead flapped out of my hiding spot and hovered to block their escape. Pulling out my Fusion Cutter, and utilizing my factory training, I melted the door closed to prevent any chance of them taking Winter to their boss. However, it seemed like it was all in vain as Winter cried out to her brother, as her mouth began frothing as she withed in agony until she was still. It was all so sudden and I hadn’t been paying enough attention, I was positive this was the end of her. I really botched this job up, and I barely been assigned to it. I heard Pand’Ora cry out and soon after another foe fell. With only one Jawa remaining it fled off into the warehouse, and Mo and I were unable to track it. Still, we moved our attention to the more pressing matter of Winter, who, upon Mo’s medical check-up, was apparently fine. I gave a sigh of relief as the Pand’Ora’s blaster blasted away the last of the foes in the room.

Able to finally catch our breath a little, I helped Mo untangle Winter from her entangling mess safely, apparently if you try to break the cords normally, they electrocute the person inside. A fact we learned as L’hrequ tried to cut himself out of his entanglements (he was entrapped by the Jawas at some point) and experienced the sharp jolt. Still, they were nothing for the Jedi who eventually cut his way out. I attempted to bring the Jedi matter up, but the life-cradling crate that supposedly held Asher was still lying in wait. I doubted his presence within, as why would Rossi leave behind the object that helps him goad Winter and not be there himself? Still, the Jedi didn’t seem as worried and he threw open the crate after Mo didn’t notice any irregularities about the container.

The container was a trap, however, and I could hear the clinging of metal and the snapping of machine work as an alarm began to ring out. Mo slammed down and sat upon the crate, but it was of little use. The lid blew off, sending Mo on a crash course towards the floor. From the crate, rose some kind of battle-droid. It was round, you could almost say hunched, and had some nasty looking blasters for hands. To make matters worse, it seemed to have a deflector shield as well as being larger than a human in size. The Jedi didn’t seem to thrilled to see it as it began blasting at him. Pand’Ora began firing upon the droid (landing a nasty shot into its head-like apparatus), and I, not thinking, dash up with my fusion cutter and did my best to melt apart pieces of the droid as if it was a factory piece. Unfortunately, the enemy seemed to prepare for such events as we did and two trandoshans popped out of crates one blasting a heated beam into my shoulder as I yelped in pain. The other taking a shot at the Jedi, who was currently was occupied blocking blaster bolts from the battle-droid, so he could only block some of the trandoshan’s laser blasts. The others hit home and the Jedi was looking rather hurt and went for cover.

Winter, still in her fake death, was grabbed by the Jawa that got away and was beginning to be dragged away again! However, this time Winter wasn’t going to take it lying down and I heard a laser blast from where she was dragged to.

As for myself, now worried about the trandoshans and the droid I attempted to become even safer, cutting a hole in the hull of the droid I clambered unto its chassis (hoping it couldn’t shoot me there), and hoped that if the trandoshans shot at me they’d hit the big droid instead. My worries were cut short though as the others were able to easily dispatch the trandoshans as I continued to slowly burn away at the droids neck-like piece until it was cut clean through and the droid collapsed. All invigorated, I made a joke about how it had a head problem which seemed to make at least Pand’Ora laugh, though it could have just been relief. I knew I was relieved, even with the nasty burn that decorated my race-suit. It does seem Mo is a doctor too, as he fixed everyone up, including myself. I was rather grateful we had all made it through decently enough, though it was a pity we hadn’t rescued Asher.

Though, we did get a clue as to where Asher may be. Inside the remnants of the crate was a holodisk that had a message mostly directed to Pand’Ora. Seems Rossi was her husband and liked calling her “cat-nip” (note Pand’Ora doesn’t seem to like that). Rossi told Pand’Ora that he wanted to meet her on Ganath and tried to convince her that what he was doing was for the good of their people. Pand’Ora seemed unconvinced, or at least convinced even more so to kill the guy. And, he still had Asher, so I’m sure, even had Pand’Ora not wanted to kill him, we’d still head that direction regardless. However, before we leave, we have some Jedi cleaning up to do to ensure we aren’t in even more trouble.

Thanks, Jedi….

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Dance at the Warehouse

L’hrequ had invited us to his room just before we left Remo’s flagship to show us he’d made a lightsaber with the kyber crystal given to him from his old master via Remo. It’s a beautiful weapon, curved handle and a blade of blue energy. I suspected he was a jedi student previously but this actually confirms it. It doesn’t change anything. I won’t turn in bounties on my friends. Hell, I’m not much of a bounty hunter anyway. There’s only one bounty I really want to claim, and he’s waiting for us on The Wheel.

Pax had contacted Waroon to meet again with him before our meeting with Rossi. Stars, I hate even saying his name. At 1800 hours we went to Mila’s Comet where we were ushered into a back room by Ceeloe. Waroon Dak is there with a flutterbug who was introduced to us as a Toydarian named Poncho. I must say, he smells rather nice, but somehow I can’t concentrate well around him, the buzz of his wings are distracting. Other than that, I really like him and he has piloting skills which are fortuitous since we are suddenly without one, a pilot that is.

Waroon gave us a letter from Brak. He’d made that delivery here on the Wheel and right after got news from Remo that Brak’s father’s ship, the Arcturus had been found and Brak had to act on it immediately as it could be his only chance to recover the ship. It will be sad to continue on without him, but the galaxy stops for no one and we have to save Pax’s brother.

The message we got from Risso said to meet on Level 20 in Warehouse 66. Waroon shows us a layout of the place and we make plans to send L’hrequ and I ahead on a cargo crate to be delivered to the warehouse. Poncho makes his way to just outside the warehouse via an air duct where he can easily see the place. He uses his data pad as a camera so we can see what he sees. This is extremely useful.

From the vent Poncho sees 10 workers unloading boxes and sees our crate come in. When the meeting time arrives, there are now only four humans and 2 jawas, and neither Pax’s brother Asher or my estranged husband, Rossi are present. This is like him, Rossi is always late, wanting a dramatic entrance.

Winter Pax and MoFo enter and are searched. I quietly pat MoFo’s shiny new sniper rifle that sits in my lap. Time continues to tick away and finally one of the humans makes a call. Suddenly one of the jawa’s shoot a net at Pax and she’s down on the ground! I explode the lid from the crate and toss the sniper rifle to MoFo! L’hrequ leaps out, bringing one of the humans to his knees with one fell swoop!

More shots are exchanged and in two quick perfect shots another human goes down and I take the first death of the enemy. Okay, well, I’m the only one using deadly force. The others have their weapons on stun. Suddenly someone is trying to drag Pax off and MoFo shoots him and knocks him down too. L’hrequ leaps with the grace of a nexu to land onto the crate we expect holds Asher and his lightsaber greatly wounds his foe.

Poomp! Poomp! Two jawa nets are fired and wrap around our Jedi and he topples over as he struggles against them. Pax shouts something to her brother about how she loves him or something and then she starts twitching and drooling green foam. Of course I freak out! NOOOO, NOT LITTLE PAX!!

My mind goes into a rage as the others finish off our foes and I chase down the last one crawling out the door who holds a grenade. I growl at him, “Tell my husband I am coming for him!” and I slam the door so he can continue crawling away with my message.

We take a breath, MoFo unwrapping Pax to find she has been playing dead-womp-rat. Larry, er, I mean L’hrequ checks on the box that we suspect has Asher within. Screaming alarms blare at us as a Destroyer Mach II unfurls before us and two more crates explode open bearing a trandoshan each.

Our Jedi is fiercely struggling with his lightsaber while tangled in the nets , our flutterbug is…is..is attacking a huge war machine droid with a tiny welding torch thing. More shots are fired, the gunplay is deafening and wild. The Jedi continues to struggle, MoFo and I continue to blast away shots, and the flutterbug is…is…riding the back of the huge war machine as it swings around blasting at us. Am I going mad? Why am I on the verge of laughing? What?!? Poncho has felled the great war machine?!? With a torch?!?

Poncho exclaims in his gruff, gravelly voice, “I took care of its head problem. It had one.” I laugh heartily. I really like this guy! He didn’t have to risk his neck to help us, but he did, and he finished off that giant war machine with style!

We look into the box that the Destroyer was in and there’s a holo-stick inside. MoFo turns it on and we see a holo recording of Rossi. He calls me Catnip, the fucker. He tells me he is doing things for the good of our people. He kidnapped an entire village on Togoria, a village of our people and sold them into slavery, to save our planet?!? The fucker.

He wants me to meet him on Ganath. I will meet him. I will kill him. I will freeze his balls in carbonite and I will mount them on the ventral cannon of the Silver Bucket where they can clang for the rest of eternity as we travel through the galaxy. Then I will take his severed head back to The Elder and correct this dishonor he has cursed my family name with.

Soon, Rossi. Soon.

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Recess is over

Disclaimer: As I write this, I’m a bit buzzed from ryshcate, so keep that in mind if this doesn’t make sense. Pand is trying to kick the habit, so she shared the ryschate she had left.

The accommodations aboard ISO-1 were humble, but I was able to relax all the same. The first week I went to visit Pand at the infirmary. She went under the knife to get skin armor installed by Cratala. Nice work. I doubt there will be any scars, but she had some fur shaved here and there, and it will be weeks before it grows back fully.

Brak suggested some improvements for Silver Bucket, so we all chipped in to improve the shields, create an inconspicuous storage space, and upgrade our targeting system. Remo fixed the other big gun on Silver bucket. Maybe it was the painkillers, but when Pand learned about our new and improved firepower, she purred with joy.

L’hrequ and Brak have had some secret between them since we left Raxus Prime. I think this is related some business Brak has with that disagreeable Ugnaught, Leebo. I guess they have a side job going on, but they’re not sharing any details.

L’hrequ also had some private business with Remo. A long time ago Remo received an item he was supposed to pass on to L’hrequ. It doesn’t make sense to me, but then I don’t understand all that Force woo woo stuff.

M0-F0 kept busy working on several modifications, most of them on himself. He looks like an entirely different droid. If it weren’t for the sarcasm and cowboy hat, I would not have recognized him.

Even with all the changes, someone else recognized M0-F0. He is a technician on ISO-1 named Parnell Dar. Apparently, he was part of the Imperial crew that created M0-F0. They were on the 1st Death Star together. Parnell and a few others ignored Gran Moff Tarkin’s order and managed to escape the Death Star before it exploded. Parnell was gushing all over M0-F0 like he was some kind of deity.

Parnell warned us that M0-F0 might have construction blueprints for the Planet Killer weapon in his memory. After taking several precautions, M0-F0 let him probe his memory banks, and indeed this deadly information is intact. Worse still, he could not delete the data. He did mention there is someone who might be able to erase the data, a woman named Mako Braden. She was the best slicer Parnell had ever heard of. He wasn’t sure where to find her, but he suggest starting the search at the Wheel.

Remo has many ears and eyes working for him in this part of the galaxy. He had found a ship that Brak was looking for, the Arcturus. It is still in the hands of someone named Orrick, who leads the Black Veil, a group of bounty hunters that pride themselves on hunting Jedi. Why is Brak interested, I wonder? I guess he has some history with Orrick. Is it related to the Jedi, or is it something else? Is L’hrequ involved? Arcturus was last seen at Saleucami, a planet controlled by the Hutts. I feel bad saying this, but I’ve never heard of a Hutt that wasn’t a crime lord.

During our three weeks on ISO-1, I spent a lot of time surfing the HoloNet. It seems both Yav Yivar and the Empire have taken notice of our recent actions. I’m grateful for Remo’s hospitality, a safe-house to stay at while the heat is on. Remo and his employees are treating us like royalty. Their high esteem comes from our success on Cholganna and Raxus Prime.

The day we were ready to leave, Shira came knocking at my door at an ungodly early hour. She found a transmission sent from the Wheel. It was a picture of Asher Pax, my baby brother. Well, not a baby now, but that’s how I see him. He has been kidnapped and is being held at the Wheel. An electronically distorted voice addressed me. “You have something we want. We have something you want.” I had five days to get to the wheel to trade myself for my brother.

M0-F0 and IT-3PO took a stab at reconstructing the original voice. It still sounded garbled to me, but I watch as Pand’s eyes went wide. She recognized the voice as Rossi, her husband. Husband?! She also said that kidnapping was the type of thing Rossi might do to make money.

Lucky for me and my brother, Pand had already previously pledged to kill Rossi. His working as a slaver and other crimes brought dishonor to the family, which would be restored when Pand killed him. She cannot return home until Rossi is dead. Normally I don’t like killing people if we could have them arrested, but in this case, I will be happy to see this Togo die. This might create problems for us if we kill him on Wheel. This is a great hub, and I don’t want to lose it.

After a farewell party on ISO-1, we depart for the Wheel. Three days of travel, no problems. When asking for permission to dock, there was a long pause, but they let us board.

Our first stop, we went to Mila’s Comet for a drink. Waroon Dak was at the same table we saw him at last time, with the same two Twileks pawing over him. He played it cool, so I talked to him like he already knew the situation with my brother. I told him I would gladly pay him for any info that helped me get my brother back. He said he would see what he could find out, and I should call him in the morning.

We weren’t on the Wheel long before I received a call. Rossi told me where to meet him. He told me to come alone, but I convinced him to let me bring “my” droid. I told him my droid has pacifist programming, which is technically true. Or least it was before M0-F0 did all those modifications. Now, who knows?

The meet time is 9 pm. We have some planning to do.

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Out of the port and into the flying pan
I believe I can flyyyyyyy !!!!

There are bodies everywhere, we can hear blaster shots in the distance. Most of the invaders are dead or have retreated. Remo and his three Wookie bodyguards are coordinating things in the open. Some of us are pretty beat up and need medical attention.
Brak assesses the damage on the Silver Bucket: it won’t prevent the ship from flying, but its maneuvers are limited until we fix it.

We learn that Yav is a longtime rival of Remo, and that he too was looking for the distress pod that Remo had recovered. Obviously the Rodian can hold a grudge… Cratala and Harsol join us. Remo offers to go find a quieter and safer place to discuss. An injured man runs toward us, mentions that the Imperials guarding the planet have been alerted. Tie Fighters and a shuttle are incoming!

Remo takes us to the corvette he uses as his headquarters: the Blockade Bandit. We go up a turbolift and walk through narrrow barracks, then reach his command center. There, Remo explains he and his people need to evacuate the place before the Imperials arrive. The corvette is actually able to fly! Three of its eleven FTL drives are working at the moment, and the ship has been slowly restored over the last few years, in case an evacuation like this one was needed. That is the only way for Remo’s folks to escape, and they need our help:

- some heavy debris preventing takeoff need to be removed.
- escape charges to free the ship have been setup and need to be checked.
- Several airlocks need to be fixed for the ship to be properly sealed.
- two more FTL engines have to be fixed.

We introduce Cratala and Harsol to Remo, who is very happy to meet them (they are however more reserved). Brak and L’hrequ are going to the ship’s med bay to get repaired first. Cratala is going to help in the medical bay. Pand is going to help with the heavy lifting. Winter negotiates a bonus of 7500 credits for the group for the extra help we’ll be providing, then agrees to help with the explosives charges herself.

Pand has to remove heavy debris preventing the ship from moving. Two humans are already working on that task, but failing (puny humans). Pand growls them to move aside then tries lifting debris. They are a lot heavier than expected. It takes her a while to accomplish the colossal task, but she manages to do it inch by inch.
Brak and L’hrequ go to the med bay. Brak is in terrible shape, which allows them to move to the front of the line. The Doc. tries to heal L’hrequ’s concussion and succeeds.

I fix engine #4 in only 5 minutes with the help of Toto: one more to go. The local techs already working on the task are astounded by my technical acumen: not bad for a droid!

Winter climbs along the side of the ship like a proud ape, to the top of the debris hip covering the corvette, from which she can see the faint blinking of demolition charges. One of them has fallen off its original location, and is directly lying on the hull of the ship! Winter almost falls off while trying to recover the charge, rips her coat (the mouth of that one in the Commlink!), but manages to place the charge to its designed location.

Meanwhile, Pand manages to move the rest of the debris that has fallen during the battle.

Healed, Brak leaves the med bay, starts climbing on the corvette and reaches a turret (medium twin turbo laser), which needs to be realigned.

I start working on another reactor, but it’s a lot more damaged and takes longer. Brak reaches the top of the ship, meets Winter on her way down the ship. Remo recommends Winter to go check the Silver Bucket, as we’ll be needing the ship for evacuating as well. Pand joins her for the preflight check.

L’hrequ helps fixing a broken airlock with nothing but vacuum tape! He joins two technicians and offers to help. Brak tries to maneuver the turret to realign it. He succeeds in only 5 minutes! He then goes for the Corvette’s cockpit to pilot it. He volunteers Pand to man (cat?) one of the Warship’s turrets. Winter checks in with Harsol, offering him to evacuate on board the Silver Bucket. Pand starts the Bucket’s engine successfully and leaves the ship to go to the corvette.
I finish fixing a fifth engine, then pack up my gear, grab Toto under my arm, then run out of the Corvette to the mechanics’ dismay. I run double-time to the Silver Bucket.

Brak tries to start the Blockade Bandit. The startup sequence is very different from our ship’s; he has never commandeered such a large ship but manages to power the beast up. He can feel a rumble going through the ship.

I reach the Bucket, Winter is waiting for me and Harsol. We get on the ship and close the ramp, just in time: the Imperial shuttle lands rights as we take off !

Remo orders the charges’ detonation. We hear multiple pops, debris fly off the corvette as directed explosions free it from tons of scrap metal. It rains shrapnel all over the base. The Bandit is free to take off. Pand reaches one of the turrets, the one that Brak fixed. It works flawlessly.

L’hrequ gets to the ship’s consoles and calls Brak to check if there is a sensor operator (there isn’t) then goes to the engine room to try and fix another FTL drive, but fails for now. Brak freaks out and starts yelling orders at his crew to speed up takeoff!

I take the Bucket out of the building very smoothly, then fly low among the garbage hips to keep a low profile. As I was taking off, I saw two dozen stormtroopers exiting the shuttle. They shoot at us with their rifles, to no effect.

The Corvette takes off as well, making a mess of debris as it clears the ground. The sensor guy detects several blips in space! Many little dots and two large ones are closing on us. We need to get the drek out of here! What the hell: two Imperial Raiders and a full squadron of Tie-Fighters. The fight for our freedom begins…

I start evasive maneuvers and jam communications for the two Raiders and one Fighter. The Bandit’s turrets (except Pand’s) shoot at the Fighters and cause some damage but mostly miss (they are manned by mostly untrained people). The Tie-Fighters close in and shoot the corvette in the flank. Winter is working on fire solutions and is unable to figure one out (maybe the Fighters are too fast).

I spin and dodge one of the fighter’s shots but the Bucket is hit hard by another one. Our ship is already in bad shape from previous fights, I agree with Bark that the Corvette will try and take most of the damage from now on so we can reach the FTL point and get out of here.

One of the two Raiders is in firing range and hits the Bandit hard with its front turbo gun, then fires a missile. An incoming alert rings in the corvette bridge. L’hrequ tries to spoof the missile and partially succeeds. Pand shoots with her big laser guns and hits the Raider hard. Two of the Tie-Fighters are hit by another turret and explode.

The Bucket is attacked by the Tie-Fighters, who miss. The Raider shoots a missile at us, which I spoof skillfully (what did you expect, hoomanz?). The three Tie Fighters are puzzled by my whimsical flight style and miss the Bucket. This time, Winter gets a good firing solution on the Fighters and Harsol transforms the mark by destroying one of them.

Brak starts spinning the Bandit in a crazy trajectory, placing the corvette in the Raider’s blind spot! I’m glad I can see that from the outside, this is brilliant flying! Meanwhile the first missile hits the Bandit and destroys one of its gun ports, killing its gunner. The other raider attacks the Bucket and barely misses. Pand and her team destroy one of the Fighters tailing us! Winter fails her firing solution again, but Harsol still manages to shoot the last Tie-Fighter left. The missile aimed at us, disoriented by my conflicting information, flies wide!! One minute to go before jumping (2 for the corvette).

One of the raiders attacks the Bandit and launches another missile. Pand’s turret crews attack the last Tie-Fighter and destroy it. Only two raiders left!

The other Raider hits the bucket incredibly hard and launches a missile. I spoof it so hard, it does not even know who the enemy is anymore… Winter fails her solution AGAIN (good thing she’s pretty, we’ll keep her) and Harsol hits the missile in flight and destroys it (an incredible feat, missiles are tiny and fly with ludicrous celerity).

Countdown is over, I punch the FTL and we’re out! The corvette still has to fend with both Raiders, but one of them is unable to attack because of Brak’s stupendous’ flying. The other Raider hits the Bandit with a concussion missile, punching a huge breach in its side. The alarm rings, meaning some compartments are compromised. Pand leaves her seat and goes out to try and fix the hull. She succeeds and the corvette is sealed again. Still, crew members are evacuating irradiated and burnt people from the damaged compartments. Suddenly, L’hrequ feels a surge in his mind, that can only be a disturbance in the force. He sees two yellow inhuman eyes on a reptilian face staring at him, and hears “I seeeee Yooouuuu” then blacks out. The Bandit jumps into Hyperspace.

When the Bucket goes out of hyperspace, we are not where we are supposed to be! In my haste, one of my coprocessors burnt out, inducing a significant astrogation error. Argh, Brak will never stop making fun of me now… The Bandit arrives where he’s supposed to however, and the crew sees a large ship or station: the ISO1, Remo’s new base of operation. We have to correct the navigation, jump again and eventually join with the Bandit and the ISO1.

We all get on board, and I land the Bucket inside one of the ISO1’s landing bays. We disembark. Remo asks to meet us in his conference room. IT3-PO is there too, much happier to see me than me him.

Remo is thrilled. Remo pays us 11,500 credits each and promises to help us with our obligations , then gives us the deed for the Silver Bucket! He also offers to fuel and repair our ship for free. What a guy !

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Never trust a junkie

So by afternoon we had decided to try are luck again fishin’ fer junk. We just got payed a nice chunk o change, m0 went right out and got him something fancy installed on his blaster not sure what it does but I am sure it will save our hides at some point. So we head back out into the godforsaken wasteland of this wonderful crapheap of a planet lookin fer more junk. We cruise along for a spell and we come across powerline splice converter of some sort, I take the wheel and bring her down and Cat, m0 and Lehreq drop down onto a garbage heap to bring her up, this one here was about a 15 footer so we gotta be careful cinching her down.

So we is thinkin we done good and somehow Winter spots something else, they call it a phase transformer or something like that, so the 3 drop back down and give her a go, this one is attached to some big motor or something like that, the attached part was the problem m0 tries man handlin or droid handlin it but she wouldn’t budge, eventually he finds a torch or something that just cuts the blasted thing off….hey moneys money right?

So we is heading back and Winter spots a bunch of smelly jawas flappin their arms and talking nonsense while they is fishin out some old droid. Sensing an opportunity we head that way to see steal a bit from the thieves themselves. I figure the best place fer me is on the skiff, now I love just about everybody but Jawas aint everybody, they are little creeps that steal and lie. I aint got no place in my heart for them so I figure it’s better to just stay on board and let them work out a deal. You should have seen their creepy little eyes flicker when they saw m0f0, almost like they were in love or something…..that right there aint healthy you know, but in their lust I believe our crew might have got the better of them, somehow we got 4 servos out of them, that’s a right nice profit if you ask me.

Now about this time we sold our junk, collected our money and were heading back towards the hotel to relax a bit, m0f0 decides he is gonna go take another bath, he is a weird one, maybe if he sticks around and I get my ship back we will make up some sorta bath for him Winter decides to follow concerned about the jawa lust for the droid. I am of the thinkin a bath around these parts makes you stand out like a sore thumb. So wes walkin and a Niemodian bumps up against me and the next thing you know I got a note in my hand saying meet me behind the corvette, not sure what kinda pickle I was getting into I ask Pand to watch my back. Lehreq had left to go check on Cortana. So I meet this feller and he tells me I need to do a job, Once I figure out what kinda job it is my blood runs cold, I don’t like these folks much but I figure what I am doing can only help the cause. Its part of the job, pick up a “special box” hide her on the ship and drop her off someplace else, milk run easy stuff, however this aint milk and this is gonna cause a stir back at the wheel.

Ensured that all is well We head to the cantina to relax a bit, we chit chat with the regulars a bit and Lehreq gets baited into a dice game, I think he is expecting a fair game but there is no honor among thieves. Pand and I kinda keep a close eye just to make sure Lehreq does not get swindled out of his servo money. So there is a human, a Wookie and a solastad at the table. Ima watchin them dice and kinda focusing on that Solostad, something aint right about this, having played a few games of dice I get a feel for how they roll and these aint right, I walk over to Pand and tell her he switched out them dice, sure enough the Solostad goes on a run and starts taking everyone’s money, the Wookie is getting HOT, Pand forces the issue and calls him out on his cheatin, after a bit of heated back and forth Ima watchin to see where he was gonna unload his dice, shore enough he raises his hands and I catch a dice flying across the bar, slicker then jawa turds that one is. I go fetch it and the jig is up. The Wookie wants to tear him apart but Lehreq calms him down enough to keep the peace. The Bartender gives us free drinks for the night…..all is well or so we thought.|

Now about that time Nortah arrives to tell us the Jawas have come…..yippee! Well apparently they bring some travelling junk show with them to this area of the planet a few times a month and it’s a big whoopteeee do. So we make our way towards these caves, actually the bucket is parked there so I figure what the heck they can look thru the junk and I can check on our big pile o junk. The group goes to check on the crap fer sale and I head to the ship, shore enough when I get there I see two of the little rats fiddling with the door of the bucket, I pull my blaster and tell them to get their hands of my door you dirty apes! Turns out these little apes were in fact Rodians it was a trap! That’s about the time all hell broke loose. Lehreq charges fearlessly, m0f0 opens up and shows what that modification to his blaster was all about, Pand opens up on a bunch, I get the ramp down to the ship thinking we may need to get out of here right quick. I grab my precious cargo and stow that away and head back down to help out ma friends. Thinking this trap was more sinister then what’s immediately in front of us Winter cuts to go check on Harsol and Cortana, m0 wisely follows Winter just in case. These Rodians had some grenades withem and gets one right up the exhaust port of the bucket……we could have problems…..big problems.

Winter heads towards the hotel, comes across a man with some sorta detonator device, apparently she clips him then m0 finishes the deal, the detonator is secure. Then they move to the hotel to secure Harsol and Cortana. Lehreq stays near the ship and moves over to the other cave to make sure its secure, I hear some ruckus and figure I better go help, I turn the corner and see Lehreq playing games with the Rodians blaster makin it float in the air, as brilliant as that boy is sometimes he tries to be too cute about thangs, so whilst lehreq is making blasters float I take one to the face and float myself for a second before the hard ground finds me, whooo doggie that was just about then end for me. I recover enough to help lehreq finish off the last of these rodians, With the last of our immediate troubles solved for the minute, we gotta regroup and figure out what they hell we are gonna do now…..

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