Title: The Wheel
netjedi - March 20, 2006 10:21 PM (GMT)
Several days have passed and Tarloss is eager to reach his destination. Once in the Ord Mantell system he quickly brings up the Metosp beacon to listen to the incoming message. Keying in the channel into the comms he hears the message coming in loud and clear over the speaker.
“Welcome to Ord Mantell, all incoming vessels must power down weapons and shields. For all vessels heading to the planet proper please listen to the following message in its entirety. Those vessels heading to the Wheel you are directed to comm. frequency 299.344.”
Tarloss keys in the frequency 299.344 and listens in.
“Commercial vessels are directed to turn to comm. frequency 382.334 for the customs contact. Independent vessels not carrying cargo are directed to turn to comm. frequency 418.556 for the Constable’s contact. Military vessels are directed to comm. Frequency 899.789.”
Tarloss keys in the next set of numbers and hails the Constable’s office. “This is the independent vessel Severance Package requesting permission to dock at the Wheel. I am in need of refueling and restocking of consumables before I can continue my work. Documentation is awaiting transmission.”
“Severance Package, welcome back, it’s been a while. Please transmit docs now and wait for further instructions.”
Tarloss hits the transmit key “Docs being sent as I speak. It is nice to be back, Wheel. Looking forward to spending some time here.”
After several minutes the comms crack to life. “Severance Package, clearance has been granted. Please follow beacon 227 to pad 4 Charlie. Fuel and supply services will be made available. Please be aware operation expenditures have forced an increase in port fees. Docking is now 65 credits per standard day and fuel has increased in price as well.”
Tarloss quips back “That is a significant increase, is the Empire not taking care of its citizens any longer?” Tarloss waits but gets no response. After a brief silence he transmits again “Roger that Wheel, beacon 227 pad 4 Charlie”
As he glides in the Severance package Tarloss notices an increase in Imperial presence here on the Wheel. Little white cocooned beings marching around in groups of four. The familiar grey officer uniforms running around as well looking slightly confused and not quite as orderly as the troopers.
He lands at his designated area and prepares to disembark. As he walks down the ramp there is an obese greasy human in what appears to be the remains of an Imperial tech uniform beneath an endless sea of grease. “Good day sir, I am in need of topping off the cells and restocking of the stores. I have been informed that standard docking is sixty five creds a standard day and that fuel cost have increased, any idea what the damage will be to my account?”
The greasy human looks up “You would be looking at 1135 creds for everything Captain that includes docking fees, and waste disposal taxes.
With a bit of surprise in his tone “1135 credits, why that is robbery, and what exactly is a waste disposal tax?”
The greasy human smiles “Well fuel costs have doubled and there is significant risk in pumping out your san tanks, that is the reason for the tax, it is only 200 credits of the fee.”
With a look of disgust Tarloss keys in the amount on his cred stick and transmits the money to the dockmaster.
“Thank you sir, good day.” And with that Tarloss turns and walks out of the bay.
netjedi - March 22, 2006 07:05 PM (GMT)
Tarloss leaves the docking port and heads to a linked terminal. He keys in some parameters looking for Lucky’s Depot. Though he had been on the wheel on numerous occasions, he had never had to go there. After a few seconds the listings come up and Tarloss looks and memorizes the address he needs.
He thinks to himself Ord Mantell, Lucky’s Depot, Chandra Fan, Conchilla over and over again.
As he is walking down the promenade he notices more and more Imperials about. He starts making mental notes of alley ways and dead ends and turbo lifts and anything else he can use as a means of escape incase things get hot. In his lifetime he knows that even the most normal or mundane of situations can get complicated and Tarloss does not like complications.
He begins thinking again as he gets to the same level as Lucky’s Depot, The Empire must really be desperate trying to wipe out the rebels since they are invading the ass end of space.
He gets just a couple of hundred yards away from the Depot he sees a 4 man Stormtrooper squad with a low level Imperial Officer walking out a beat up little Chandra Fan from the Depot. Tarloss concentrates on the situation and can barely make out the Officer calling out to the troopers “Get this rebel filth to the detention center.” The Officer then turns to the gathering crowd and calls out “Let this be a lesson to everyone, Rebel insurgency and operations are not tolerated within the Empire’s rule, and the Empire rules everything! This alien scum has been found to be a rebel sympathizer and he will be questioned and executed as a traitor to the Empire. If you do not wish this to be your fate you will make sure to be loyal to the Empire.”
Tarloss first thinks to himself Oh great! and then thinks to himself what a pompous little prick that officer is, he must really be gunning for quick promotions if he is distorting the Empire’s rule like that. Little does he know that with an attitude like that he can only get up a level or two, then he will need to change his violent brutal ways for even bigger ones.
Tarloss starts following the troopers from a far. He sees another link terminal; he quickly pulls up schematics and looks for the Constables office and where the detention center is. Once he finds it he back tracks to where they are currently and looks for a good ambush point. He locates a good point that is somewhat out of the way and not too close to the Security forces. He quickly departs.
Tarloss rushes down to levels to the same deck the Constables office is and rushes into an alley way and begins to climb up to the top of a shop and waits for the troopers.
The troopers come around the corner a couple of minutes later. Tarloss does not see the officer and curses in his head, but decides continue with the rescue op. Once they are in position Tarloss takes out the front two troopers with well placed shots. Stormtrooper armor may be thick, but it does have its weak points. The other two troopers quickly turn and fire in his direction.
Sithspit! I didn’t think they would pick up my position that quickly He thinks to himself. now I am pinned.
In his head he counts to three and then jumps over the side down the front of the shop. He begins to roll to the side as he pops off another pair of shots. Two of them find purchase on one of the trooper’s chest plate and he sees the trooper start to buckle and fall to the floor. The last trooper gets of a good shot and the shot grazes Tarloss’ left arm.
“Argh!!!” is heard as Tarloss screams in pain, his left arm barely useful and limp. With renewed vigor he snaps up the blaster in his right hand and shoots the trooper square in the face. The shattering of plasteel is heard in the area as well as the clunky sound of the heavily armored body hitting the floor.
Tarloss takes a deep breath as he works off the stunning effect of the damage he took to his left arm. He thinks to himself It ain’t that bad get up you pansy
Tarloss begins to stand up and notices the Chandra Fan’s eyes get even bigger. He feels the hairs on the back of his neck tingle and he whips around to see the Imperial Officer standing there pointing his heavy blaster at him, a DL-44 by the looks of it.
The Officer begins his monologue “Well, well what do we have here. Another Rebel operative on my station! Two for the price of one I guess, but this time I wil not be so generous and take you into custody. You are dangerous, so I have no choice but to drop you here where you are.”
The Officer starts to take aim and Tarloss straightens himself out proud of his accomplishments. Then right as the trigger begins to get pulled two shots penetrate the Officers chest and he drops in a pile of steaming and smoking flesh.
Tarloss looks back and the little Chandra Fan had a trooper rifle pointed in the direction of what had been the Officer.
Tarloss tells the Chandra Fan “Drop your weapon and hands up!” with a slight look of surprise the Chandra Fan complies. Tarloss shoots the little guys hands free from the adjoining cuffs.
Tarloss gets up and walks quickly to the Chandra Fan “What is your name friend?”
The little bat like alien replies with some chirps and whistles which translate to “Conchilla”
Tarloss says “Well then I have something for you, but it is not safe here anymore, do you have a means off of this station?”
Conchilla responds with some squeals that signify a yes.
“Good, here is your information. Now go! I have some cleaning up to do here, I cannot be found out.”
Conchilla responds with the following statement “You do not have to worry about being found out. I scrambled the camera feeds as soon as I knew they Imps were on to me. They have no footage of anything that happened almost 30 minutes prior to there arrival at Lucky’s Depot. And besides I have this.” The little being pulls out a strange looking device. “It is a wave scrambler, the troopers could not transmit back any images either.”
“You are very resourceful my friend. Good luck getting that to your contact. I hope to make your acquaintance again.”
With that The Chandra Fan departs and Tarloss heads back to the level where the Casino is.
netjedi - March 22, 2006 07:29 PM (GMT)
He walks in and instantly spots a heavily armed human female by one of the doors. She is watching him as well. They almost circle the room watching each other. She has an experienced look to her. The rough and tumble spacer sort. The tattoo of a snake coiling around her stomach is a give away that she is no ordinary woman. Her long flowing locks pulled back to give her a clear field of vision is another. The heavy spacer boots with gripping tread is yet another. She appears to be on the hunt and that Tarloss is her prey.
She makes the first move and unclips the strap keeping her heavy blaster locked in to its holster. She begins to walk towards Tarloss and he takes a quick glance around to make sure no one is sneaking up around him. He then unclips his right blaster. Remembering that his left arm is almost useless he will need to rely on his right hand only.
As she approaches he can smell the sweet aroma she is exuding. A very familiar smell, a smell that brings back some memories of a time long, long ago.
Finally she speaks “Tarloss Ren, it has been a long time.”
“Angelina Shayd, yes it has” he retorts.
“What is Bantha slime like you doing in my place?” is her response to him.
Tarloss states “Well first of all I did not know it was your place, but I was in the neighborhood and wanted to take a load off and maybe play a few creds at the tables.”
Angelina replies “Is that so. Well then isn’t it a small galaxy.”
Tarloss chuckles and says “Yes it is. How long has it been anyways? Women are supposed to have better memory for dates and things of that nature.”
“8 years, 8 frakin years since you walked away and left. How have you been? It looks like you did not leave the life very far behind you. That was the reason you left or don’t you remember?” The words leave her face with a slight grimace.
“Yes it was. I tried to stay away from this life after we lost Tam & Rogan. I could not deal with more friends dying, you have to understand, and we were like family. I could not handle any more losses. I am working solo now, things have been good. And you, you look to be doing fine?” Tarloss responds with a little hurt in his voice.
“Not too bad, I sold my ship and bought a large interest in this casino, made my self the head of security so now, not only do I get a cut, I also earn a salary. Even got me a new ship a fancy dancy Baudo yacht. Sleek and fast and just about worthless for anything else. You know the life has changed, so does the reason for having a ship. And you, I know you lost a lot when your ship was lost, what are you flying nowadays?” With that last response her face goes back to being normal.
Tarloss responds “I am flying a little courier ship now. A Revan class.”
Angelina interrupts Tarloss’ response and talks into her comm. “Main floor table 3, Devaronian in a blue suit, watch him, I think he has a skifter.” Looks back at Tarloss “Sorry, work never ends. Go on.”
Tarloss says “Not much more to say. I pick up jobs here and there, just like the old days except not so much into smuggling the big things anymore like back in the old days. Hey listen do you have med facilities here? I need my arm checked out.”
“Come on now, do you think I would not have my own med facilities here, you know in our former line of work we needed places where we can get discreet medical attention. Follow me.” Angeina stands up and begins walking away from the area they were at. “Three Five this is Shayd, I am going into the back, keep your eyes and ears open.”
She leads Tarloss into the back area to an almost state of the art medical facility. “We need to keep a facility like this it is the law, but we are well beyond what is required here and my staff is loyal.” She looks to a robed medical person “Dr. take care of this gentleman’s arm and keep it quiet.”
The Dr. responds with just “Yes Mistress Shayd.”
The Dr. gets to work on the arm. “This is not that bad, you are lucky. A quick bacta patch and it will be good as new in a day, maybe two at the most.”
Tarloss responds “Thanks doc, here is 100 creds for your troubles and I won’t take no for an answer.”
“Angelina thanks again. But I need to cut and run. I needed get out of the streets for a few minutes. Now that I know where you are I will definitely take some time to come back and visit.” The words come out of Tarloss almost with a smile.
“Yeah, I figured as much. Don’t be a stranger, I will always have a room ready for you. Take care.” Angelina gives her former partner a hug and she starts to walk back to the casino floor “You do know your way out don’t you? I have work to do.”
With a chukle he responds “Yeah I got it, The Dr. should not be too much longer.”
Once his work is done Tarloss returns to the docking pad and starts to up the Severance Package. Lighting up a tabacc stick he inhales and then exhales. Thinking to himself That was close setting the comms to port control “Control this is the Severance Pakcage request departure clearance and vector.”
The voice comes back “Severance Package clearance granted to depart in one five minutes, there is a delay on the departure vectors. Your vector will be 34 mark 25, jump point is standard 50.”
“Roger that Control clearance granted on vector 34 mark 25, transition point is five zero units out. Departure in one five minutes. Severance Package out.”
Once the fifteen minutes are over he fires up the repulsors and departs. He sets course for StarForge Station so he can take a break of a week or two to recover and relax. He reaches the jump point and transitions to hyperspace. With a swoosh the swirls of hyperspace appear through the window. The swirls are a peaceful site for Tarloss. He lights up another tabacc stick and relaxes.
Jedi Skyler - September 19, 2007 10:50 AM (GMT)
*It's been a long time,* Skyler Masters thought to himself as he strolled slowly through the Wheel, taking in the sights and memorizing the location of all the shops, kiosks, and guarded checkpoints. He cut an imposing figure; at over two meters tall and very broad across the shoulders he dwarfed most of the beings he passed. *The Imperials have certainly taken every opportunity to punctuate their presence...*
He continued along the concourse, his long black cloak billowing about him. He had the hood pulled up over his head, all but the very tip of his chin shrouded in shadows. As he walked, the matte black shin armor on his boots flashed dully into view, only to disappear again within the voluminous cloak. His stride was strong, confident, as though he owned the very deck plating upon which he walked. Occasionally he would stop and turn towards a kiosk or shop, observe the myriad of beings huddled around or within, only to head back out moments later.
A loud commotion erupted somewhere behind Skyler; within the hood he smiled. A store owner cried out, “Stop, thief!” in several different languages, then resorted to issuing invectives in his native tongue. Skyler heard pounding footsteps approaching quickly from behind him. Off to his right he heard the tinny voices of stormtrooper voices, their own running causing loud footfalls to echo throughout the concourse. All the action seemed to be converging upon Skyler’s location, he noticed.
Time to test the waters.
Sidestepping suddenly, his body darted to the left even as his right arm came out in a reverse punch that landed square in the center of the burglar’s face. Cartilage crunched, the being, a Weequay, screamed and collapsed to the deck, holding his face and moaning. The stormtroopers drew up, the commander shouting, “Freeze!” The squad of four troopers immediately surrounded the two combatants, pointing their blaster rifles while the commander continued. “What is going on here?” he demanded. “Why did you assault this Weequay?”
Masters replied simply, “Because he is a thief. He just stole from that shop back there,” he said, indicating the irate shop owner with a tilt of his hooded head. “If you search him you will find the stolen goods.” He turned to leave.
“Not so fast,” the commander said, stepping closer and bringing the muzzle of his blaster rifle to about three centimeters away from Skyler’s chest. “Who are you? Where is your identification?”
“Here are my credentials,” Skyler replied smoothly. He held out a card in a black-gloved hand. The forearm was sheathed in a matte black metal bracer of some sort; there were a number of buttons embedded within the bracer’s casing, cleverly concealed by the excellent craftsmanship of the device. The trooper commander took the card and inspected it. “Oh,” he said quietly. “You’re cleared,” he added, handing back the card and stepping back a little. “We’ll take it from here.”
“Hold on a moment,” Skyler said, savoring the moment. “If there’s a bounty on him, it belongs to me.” Masters knelt down and checked the near-unconscious thief for identification, found it, and perused it. He quickly consulted a datapad, ‘hmmphed’ at the results, then stowed the device deep within his cloak. “Alright boys,” he said. “Take him away. He’s of no use to me.” Turning on his heel, Skyler headed off in his original direction, leaving the commotion behind him.
Looking down at the ID in his hand, Masters thought to himself, *That was money well-spent.* One never knew when there would be a need for false identification; not long ago he’d shelled out a good deal of money to have equipment installed in his ship to allow him to produce such documents. He was still learning, but he had…other ways of ensuring success until his skills were up to par…
Jedi Skyler - September 30, 2007 09:44 AM (GMT)
Skyler's journey terminated at a moderately loud, suitably dark cantina, called "Flight's End." A stylized picture of a wrecked starship adorned the sign above the door, and a myriad of conversations streamed endlessly out the portal. Skyler ducked in and headed toward the back of the cantina, toward a booth that was just opening up. Several sets of eyes followed his passage, onlookers curious that he did not seem to need to allow his eyes to adjust to the dim lighting within. He paid them no mind as he took a seat with his back to the wall. Reaching his left hand out to activate the holo menu, a matte black bracer covering this forearm as well. He cycled through the available fare, then settled simply on a Thrusterburn. He keyed a series of commands into the keypad and sat back. His drink arrived several minutes later and he took a small sip, savoring the fiery liquid as it traced its way through his body.
For several minutes Skyler sat at his booth, sipping his drink and taking in the ambience of the cantina; two tabels away a pair of Weequay sat, looking at each other and occasionally nodding. Skyler knew they were communicating primarily through the use of pheremones, but decided to leave them their privacy. At a table on the opposite wall, at the front of the cantina, a trio of Aqualish sat with a human spacer, the quartet babbling in hushed but excited tones about an upcoming run they were going on in hopes of making that final, big score. Other similar conversations took place all over the cantina, along with several games of chance. One table had a fairly rowdy game of sabaac going on; another sported a quieter but intense game of hibaac. Skyler sipped more of his drink and took it all in, waiting patiently.
A dark figure suddenly appeared in the entrance; blocking the doorway for several long moments it appeared to take in the scene laid out before it, then purposefully strode into the cantina, coming directly to Skyler's table. The figure wore a hooded black cloak virtually identical to Skyler's own. The individual was shorter than Skyler yet exuded a palpable aura of supreme confidence and of power. Sitting across from Skyler, a rich, deep voice spoke. "Excellent, my son. You have completely masked your presence; I had to visually scan to find you."
Skyler nodded within the shadowy recesses of his hood. "Thank you, Father. I have been practicing." As if on cue the waitress arrived, bearing a cup filled with a steaming liquid. "Your tea," Skyler said simply. "Thank you," he said to the waitress, who turned and headed back toward the bar. "It's that black you so favor," Skyler added, taking another sip of his almost-finished drink.
"What have you learned?" the figure asked, taking up the cup and sipping slowly.
Skyler handed over a datapad. "I have mapped practically the entire facility," he replied. "As you can see, there are still a few areas I haven't been to, but I've recorded all the visible checkpoints and a number of concealed monitor stations as well. You will find viable exit routes coded in yellow, heavy-traffic areas in blue, and dead ends in red. The shops are also tagged; simply pick one and you can see what they sell. That could come in useful during a pursuit."
"Assuredly," the figure replied. "Anything else I need to know before we begin?"
"The Starsaber is in Docking Bay 19," he replied evenly. She's prepped and ready to go at a moment's notice. It's denoted with a green star on the map," he said evenly. "Are you ready to go, Abtominion?" Skyler asked.
Abtominion looked at several items on the datapad. "I have a few items to purchase before we complete our mission. The shop was closed for lunch when I went by earlier. Nothing bulky," Abtominion assured, holding his left hand up in a placating gesture. His forearm was encased in a bracer similar to Skyler's. "Just a few components I need for some of my first aid salves. You can go ahead and make your way to the detention center. When I arrive, we can begin." He stood to leave.
"See you there," Skyler replied, finishing his drink and paying the tab. Rising from the booth, he left the cantina as silently as he'd entered and headed for the detention center. Upon his arrival he entered, striding right up to the sergeant's desk as if he owned the place. In a low, raspy voice he said, "I'm here to update my bounty list."
The Imperial officer's upper lip curled up in a slight sneer before the officer could get control of himself. "Fine. Whatever. Terminal's over there," he said, indicating a well-worn workstation embedded in the far wall. Skyler bowed and made his way to the computer.
Pulling out his datapad, Skyler attached a cable to both the datapad and the computer console. He typed in several long commands and then waited for his program to deliver the expected results...