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Old 09-28-2006, 02:07 PM   #5
igyman
Tension!
 
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Chapter IV

''You know, between his howling and you blasting everything in sight, it's a wonder the whole station doesn't know we're here.''
Luke Skywalker

Socorro. A planet in the Outer Rim, one of many not-so-hospitable planets in the galaxy. Its terrain is primarily composed of deserts, mountains and volcanic ground. Not a pleasant place, but its inhabitants didn't mind the planet's hot climate. They were proud of their home, such as it was. On a historical note, Socorro was the homeworld of Lando Calrissian, a General of the New Republic, on a more recent note the planet held the headquarters of Rav's bounty hunter organization.

Rav was of the Feeorin species, he used to be a pirate, but gave it up to start a bounty hunting business. He was recognizable for his blue skin, a cross-like scar over his left eye and a mechanical claw-like right leg. He's the pirate that found Cade Skywalker after the Massacre of Ossus and picked him up with his ship. Rav was a smart and calculating individual who knew how to get what he wanted from people and who knew how to make people do what he wanted. That is how he managed to keep Skywalker performing special favors for him, since Cade had a spice addiction. Unfortunately for Rav, the Bothan Jedi Tre'lyis recognized the problem and used the Force to heal Cade from his addiction, allowing him to end his dealings with Rav. Rav was upset, but he wasn't going to make a bad situation worse by showing force, so he cut his losses and ended his arrangement with Cade in the friendliest way possible.

Rav wasn't a bad guy, though he wasn't anywhere near being honest, but he took care of his people. This was one of those days when he had to make another demonstration of his authority.

Cade's former bounty hunter partners and shipmates, the pink skinned Zeltron woman, Deliah Blue and the human man, Jariah Syn were on their way to Rav's office for an urgent meeting.

''What do you think this is all about?'' Syn asked.

''I have no idea, but Rav sounded pretty serious over the com. This must be something big.'' Blue answered. She was as confused as her colleague.

''I don't like it. Things have been getting more dangerous lately for people in our line of business.'' Syn pointed out.

''You said it. Ever since Cade left we haven't had a decent bounty.'' Deliah Blue never did get over Skywalker's departure. She had a thing for him, she wasn't sure how serious it was, but she regretted not getting the chance to know him better.

''Cade. There we go again. Cade betrayed us, Deliah. He was a frakking Jedi! He was a Jedi and he didn't bother to tell us!'' Syn had an inexplicable loathing towards the Jedi, which is why he didn't take Cade's reason for resigning too well.

''Betrayed us? No, I don't look at it that way. He was just being smart.'' Blue pointed out, ''He was protecting himself. And us, for that matter. If he revealed his past to us every bounty hunter in the galaxy, or every other scum that had a beef with Cade for that matter, would have come swarming down on all of us.'' Blue said.

''Perhaps, but that's no excuse! We trusted him, he was our captain, but apparently he didn't trust us.'' Syn said, in reality he was thinking ''He didn't trust me!''

''Oh, get over it, Syn!'' Blue said, ''You just have issues against the Jedi and you couldn't stand that your captain used to be one!''

''Hmpf.'' Syn frowned, ''Right.'' He said nervously, ''And what about Rav?''

''What about him?'' Blue asked rhetorically.

''Rav saved Cade's life in the first place and Cade didn't have the courtesy to tell him about his past.'' Syn demanded.

''Oh, come on! Rav knew all about Cade, he had to. Rav is always at least one step in front of everybody else. Why do you think he fed Cade's spice addiction?''

They were at the entrance to Rav's office by now. The argument was heating up, voices were becoming louder. Rav could hear them from the inside and he decided that he has had enough.

''Am I interrupting something?'' Rav asked sarcastically as he appeared at the door.

''No, Rav, we were just...'' Syn started.

''You were alerting half of the city block that you were here.'' Rav finished for him.
''Sorry, Rav.'' Blue said.

''Forget it. Now, get in, we have urgent matters to attend to.''

Rav's office was a lot cleaner than the rest of the building in which it was housed. It wasn't very large, just two tables and some chairs, as well as a state of the art computer terminal in the back. The lights were dimmed, creating the atmosphere found only in descriptions of the offices of sleezy private investigators in the local holonovels. It was early evening. Rav sat behind his terminal and Syn and Blue stood behind him.

''So what was so urgent, Rav?'' Blue finally asked.

''Things are getting ugly. Between last night's attack on the Sith base and the death of every bounty hunter I send after that Sith bounty it isn't safe for us on Socorro as it used to be.'' Rav explained.

''So what are we going to do about it?'' Syn asked.

''I have a bad feeling that when those Imperial Knights take over the planet the first thing they're gonna do is come down on smuggling and bounty hunting businesses, which is why I've decided that we should get the hell out of here as soon as tonight.''

''And where are we going?'' Syn was curious.

''In a few minutes I'm going to have a talk with Queen Jool. If all goes well, we will be heading for Coruscant.''

''Queen Jool? You know better than to deal with a Hutt. Are things really that bad, Rav?'' Blue asked.

''We won't be working for her, but we do need her permission to operate there. She is the leading crime lord on the Capital.'' Rav said reluctantly.

''Maybe we should try to find Cade.'' Blue suggested, ''I don't think he'd refuse to help us out after all we've been through.''

''Yeah, right.'' Syn countered, ''Haven't we been over this already?''

''Stop it! Both of you.'' Rav decided to put an end to it, ''If we had more time, Deliah, I'd agree with you, but we don't know where he went and we don't have the time to look for him, so we will take what we can get. Understood?''

''Yeah.'' She said unwillingly.

The terminal beeped, signaling that there's an incoming transmission. Rav pressed the ''accept'' button and an ugly face of a green skinned Hutt with a cybernetic eye appeared on the screen.

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