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Author Topic: "Hunting the Hunted"  (Read 2801 times)

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Offline Noth

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #30 on: 07/01/17, 11:37:48 AM »
Athuuna read the attachment over.

So... Ke'rii had a girl he wanted seen safe? The agent avoided those sort of things for a reason. One of those reasons the Captain had already spelled out in his letter: allowing another person leverage over you was sloppy work. Still, if the woman had gear for Ke'rii, it was worth the risk.

It also required him to wait a day, and Ogasawara had been unclear as to where and when she would arrive. Time to make use of his skills...

He rechecked his own firewalls, then left to find a dataport to access the spaceport's comms chatter. The Hutts weren't stupid. Like him, they didn't trust leaving even their most mundane secrets on the Holonet for anyone to find. Finding one that was suitably out of the way, he sat down with his slicer's kit to get to work. Plan was to locate the codes and frequency, bring them back, and listen in on the landing and departing schedules as casual background noise for the next two days.

Nothing like a stakeout to remind him how dull even Cipher work could be.

Finding the codes, he tucked his datastick into his jacket and returned to the the ship. While his usual modus operandi was to move all data to his cybernetics and destroy the original, with the Hutts that seemed... il-advised. Even something as innocent as a spaceport comms tower was bound to have anti-slicing mechanisms built in. He had no wish to unleash those on his own mind. Athuuna found a secure terminal on his starship (for exactly this kind of unsecured data processing) and slid the datastick into its slot, allowing the computer to sift through and assess the data before it would transfer it to his audio systems.

As it did, he went to find himself the darkest, sludgiest caf his food unit could create. If there was danger looking for Ms. Slate, Athuuna fully intended to be the first to find her the moment she arrived. He'd even take out the shipyard workers to do it, if needed. Nice and simple. But it was going to be a long night.
« Last Edit: 07/01/17, 02:11:54 PM by Noth »
Pubs

Bren: Jedi Archaeologist // Iirim: Padawan Spook // Zorru: Jedi Recruiter // Aybekk: Padawan Nerd
Seirion: Senatorial Aide // Varooth: Iridonian Politician // Ayrak Malid: Arbiter of Clans // Telen: Tiny Slicer

Imps

Urziya: Mandalorian 'Diplomat' // Terr: Mandalorian Chieftain // Majia: Pirate Princess // Athuuna: Agent Cyberneticist // Zhekrazh: Mysterious Sith

Offline Karmic

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #31 on: 07/01/17, 01:28:20 PM »
Karmic was on her ship over Shaddaa space mid-practice swing when her wrist com beeped with the note from Ke'rii.

A sheen of perspiration dripped from her forehead as she grabbed a towel and walked over to the larger keypad at her coms to respond - remembering she also needed to write a Moff and might as well do it now before something else got her attention again.

First, the quick response back to Ke'rii

Quote

No problems with the Agent.  More eyes and ears no one but us knows about the better.  He can contact me anytime, of course!  Thank you for letting me know, its better I know our exact forces rather than find out someone could have been used too late.

-D.K.



She sent that one and then stood for a few minutes, drying off her hair as she contemplated what she was going to send to Nic.  She was hoping the Moff could use her as an excuse to provide them with some backup - but to give him the best chance in doing that she had to word the message right.

Quote

Dear Moff Heerman,

I know you are aware of the predicament Mr. Ogasawara is currently dealing with.  Normally, this is not something I would involve myself in as I try not to get involved in blood feuds that are not against me.  However, once I learned about the nature of these Pirates, and the fact that they've already destroyed an entire shipyard (and the souls onboard) just because Mr. Ogasawara "might" be there -he wasn't, hadn't been, and was no where close- as an Imperial business woman on the Outer Rim I no longer felt I could stand aside.  This is no longer just his problem.

Don't worry - I'm not writing to ask you to step in for the sake of the Empire.  You and your responsibilities belong Where You Are.  I am only writing in the hopes that you can at least send a few fleet ships or ten in support of my actions as a Darth, and an Imperial.  These pirates are a threat to our already weakened resources and assets and they clearly aren't concerned with collateral damage from their hunt.  Futhermore, it just doesn't sit right with me that this destruction of property has gone unanswered.  For when this blood hunt is over what is to stop them from taking out more business property "just because"? 

Krayt Industries supplies the Empire and its military with a significant portion of building materials and I just can't risk possible attacks and losses to my chain of supply that these particular pirates are now posing.  They overstep themselves, dear Nic.

So if you'd allow me to - I'd very much like to take some Imperial ships and mete Sith justice on those who would dare to destroy such property - much less go after a member of the Imperial military.  Once I've been able to destroy them, you would have your Captain and your ships back - and we can all get back to our real concerns.

Of course, any help you feel at liberty to provide would be welcome.  The more help I can muster the easier, and faster, this can all be taken care of.

Thank you for your time and consideration,

Darth Karmic Draga'zathoth
CEO and Founder of Krayt Industries
Former Whisperer and Executioner of Moirae


(Ok I may have gotten Ke's rank wrong - sorry!  Please put the right rank there in your mind when you read it  :halo:)

@Nicohlas

She read it over and then sent it with a nod.  She wanted to keep it short but mention each of the real concerns, and reasons, for her actions and request.  For a Moff she knew it wasn't about choice, or about personal feelings, but about the threat to the Empire - on whether Nic would be able to help them.  She hoped she'd given him enough to justify it.

As she went back to finish her practice-routine she was considering the list of allies she planned to call on for this - as that message would also need to be sent soon.  All would be invited of course - she didn't want anyone upset over missing the fun.


History Posts:  Her Backstory , Darth-Hood

Offline Kremon

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #32 on: 07/04/17, 09:44:05 AM »

Gharzog didn't move from his position, remaining still and quiet. Even the slightest rustle of his long coat could give away where he was and reveal his eavesdropping. As it was though, when things went quiet, too quiet, he needed to see what was going on, and where Ke'rii was. Perhaps he was sitting right on the other side of the door, having a giggle to himself as he waited to see how long it would take him to work it out. Or perhaps he knew where Gharzog was the whole time, maybe he'd hacked into the Palace's security systems and was watching him with his cybernetics?
The palace's security systems had held up this long against threats much greater than one man, but he was still paranoid. It was something to keep in mind.
Finally, he couldn't bear it any longer. He took off his hat to peer out through the doorway to see Ke'rii walking towards his apartment. After just a moment, he disappeared inside.
Morning jog? Bantha dung.
Exephos; a haunted war-ravaged veteran.
Shad'ra; an indecisive ex-mandalorian.
Gharzog; a happy-go-lucky gun for hire.

Offline Mei

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #33 on: 07/04/17, 10:59:18 PM »
Blood Hound
In orbit over Csilla
Csilla System, Chiss Space
 
Bloodthirst stood at the helm of his flagship and stared out the window. Raiding anything within Chiss Space was bound to get the attention of the Sith Empire, but Csilla? Csilla was the capital world of the Chiss Ascendancy. The same Chiss Ascendancy that held tight ties to the Sith Empire. But Ke’rii Ogasawara had investments and business on Csilla. Investments he could destroy and try to lure the bastard out of hiding. The Kol Darin Shipyard over Riflor wasn’t enough to bring the man out, but could hitting such an important system? Could a daring strike against the Chiss Ascendancy do it?
 
The pirate boss let out a low growl as he sighed.
 
Eight million credits, and he had nothing. Nothing. No one. Not a single ping on the bastard’s location. Was the price too low? Couldn’t be. Maybe it was too high. Too unbelievable. But he couldn’t lower it. He could drop the bounty on Ke’rii. He’d look weak to any hunter who may actually be working this hunt.
 
Frustrated, Bloodthirst slammed his fist on the console. He heard Rankin clear his throat behind him. Great, now that imbecile of a second was here. Just what he needed, another fool to undermine and doubt his commands.
 
“What?” he growled, not even turning to see his second-in-command.
 
“Sir?” Rankin spoke with a timorous voice. He could feel his boss’s irritation. “W-we are receiving communications from the Chiss Ascendancy that--”
 
Bloodthirst turned with a snarl and came face to face with Rankin. The fearful second-in-command stumbled back, thankful not to have tripped over his feet.
 
“Chiss. Empire,” Bloodthirst glared. “I don’t wanna hear from none of them,” he threatened.
 
“Yes, sir…” Rankin dared to continue. “But they’re tellin’ us we ain’t s’posed to be here. R-restricted space an’ all.”
 
A long, deep, sigh escaped the boss pirate as he stared at his incompetent second. He could kill him. He could kill him right here and now and wouldn’t think twice about it. What kind of pirate was he where he cared if they were in restricted space? So what if the Chiss were threatening them.
 
“Proceed as planned,” Bloodthirst began to command.
 
“Sir,” Rankin remained firm. “Th-this plan is…” oh he was going to die. “F-f-foolish, sir,” his words began to race out of him, hoping to convince the pirate of his error. “The Ch-chiss are in tight with the Empire, an-and a hit on them would--”
 
“--Would bring Ke’rii out of hiding.” Bloodthirst growled.
 
Rankin shook his head and couldn’t look at his boss as he doubted his command. “N-no sir, i-it would s-start som’thin’ w-we c-can’t win.” He looked up. “I-if y-you wa-want K-ke’r-rii’s blood, th-then I-I’s th-think we better m-move out, s-sir.”
 
The stuttering alone made Bloodthirst boil, but denying a command? He was about to put the other into the airlock and send him on his way to his cold death.
 
“W-we g-got’s t’ be s-smar’ ‘bout this, cap’n,” Rankin stood his ground and hoped logic would save him from his boss’s wrath. “M-might be b-best if we w-watch the t-trade routes f-for h-his next sh-shipment.”
 
Bloodthirst didn’t say a word and turned back to look out the viewport at Csilla. His eyes narrowed and he didn’t want to admit Rankin was right. Even now he could see ships moving into defensive positions. He was no match for a fleet, even the small one he saw forming before him.
 
“Pull out,” he said, strangely calm. “And set a course for Kril’Dor. We’ll strike at that Tibanna mine he’s got credits invested in.”
 
 
 
Dancer’s Palace
Solange’s Apartment
Nar Shaddaa
 
Keiko’li was in tears and nothing Ke’rii said to her seemed to ease the girl’s fears. As he looked up at his sister, it was obvious Mei was on a schedule, but holding off as much as she could. There was no other way around this; Keiko had to leave. It was the only safe option. And the immediate option was to leave with Mei’li to Dromund Kaas.
 
“You can tell me all you want how this is best for me,” Keiko cried in her father’s arms and shook her head. “But you’re wrong. I don’t wanna go there. I don’t wanna--I wanna stay here. I wanna make sure you are safe--”
 
Ke’rii kissed the top of his daughter’s head and quietly shushed her. “I will be safe,” he assured her.
 
“It’s like,” Keiko cried. “every time something good happens, you go away. Like with that stupid fleet--”
 
“You’re not losing me,” he stated, firm. “I’ve got good people on my side. This will work. And your Aunt Mei will keep you out of harm’s way.”
 
“Why can’t we just go home to Tatooine?” Keiko cried some more. “Why can’t we just go back to the way things were?” this was torture to her.
 
Ke looked at Mei and the two shared a look of conversation. “There’s a Tatooine option,” he said. “But right now, this is the immediate option, and that is what I need. I need to focus, Keiko’li.”
 
He heard his holocom beep softly; probably a response to one of his messages.
 
Keiko looked up at him and met her father’s eyes. “And I’m a distraction, right?” the question seemed to upset her more.
 
Ke’rii nodded. “You want me safe; and I want you safe. See how this won’t work out? I need to handle this. I need to solve this, and I need to know that you are safe and out of reach of anyone who may try to harm you on account of me. Do you understand?”
 
Of course she understood, but she didn’t want to admit it.
 
“You need to leave with your Aunt Mei now,” Ke continued and glanced up at his sister. “This’ll all be over soon,” he hoped he wasn’t lying.
 
Keiko stood quickly and did not look at her father as she went to the door. She was mad and hurt. She hated every bit of this. She hated Mr. Hat. She hated the pirates. She hated everything and anyone she could blame for this. She even hated Tutix--no… she couldn’t hate him. He was just defending his life, but she did hate that her father didn’t speak up and tell the damn pirate that he wasn’t responsible. Her face scrunched with thought as she left the apartment. Damn him for being so honorable, she thought.
 
Ke and Mei caught up with her as she made her way to the stairs.
 
Certainly Mr. Hat was around by now, Ke thought as he glanced around the upstairs lobby as they headed for the exit. He knew the perimeter he was safe in and wasn’t going to try to test it as he stepped outside, just beyond the door though he knew he would be ok a little further out.
 
For a moment he thought Keiko would get in the taxi without another word to him, and his heart broke. And he was prepared to toughen up, when she came back and wrapped her arms tightly around him.
 
“Don’t get dead on me, daddy,” she mumbled.
 
Ke’rii kissed the top of her head as he returned her hug. “I won’t, I promise.”
 
A tight squeeze later and Keiko was quick to go to the taxi.
 
“When I get home,” Mei said quietly. “I’ll send you your files on Sartori.” She stopped and looked at him.
 
Once again the pair seemed to share a silent conversation. Stepping out further onto the platform, but still within the Palace’s security perimeter, Ke’rii simply gave her a hug and did not say a single word before pushing her towards the taxi.
 
He took in a deep breath as he watched his daughter and his little sister depart. Things were about to go into motion quickly once all their pieces were in place. After a moment he looked down at his holocom and read Karmic’s message. With a short nod of his head he began to compose a quick message to his agent, simply sending him the Darth’s contact information.
 
Perhaps it was time for that jog, he thought as he entered the Palace once again.
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Offline Kremon

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #34 on: 07/05/17, 07:22:32 AM »
Gharzog watched closely as the trio of Ke'rii, Keiko, and the as of yet unnamed woman disappeared up the staircase. Right towards the entrance of the Palace. If Ke'rii stepped out of the premises now, without informing him of his little exit; he'd shoot him. With that thought in mind, he drew one of his blasters but didn't yet charge it up so as to not set off the Palace's security, making his way across the upstairs lobby, and up the stairs to the docks. He remained to the side of the staircase so that he could get a peek at the situation before he charged in.
Ke'rii was there, right on the edge of the security fields, hugging his daughter goodbye. The woman not far off either, whilst a taxi waited in the background. The man had mentioned sending her off, but he'd also said that he'd be accompanying her to Imperial space. Clearly, that plan had changed. Did he perhaps not trust Gharzog to keep up his end of the bargain? Maybe, just maybe.
That's what he'd do personally, because he sure as stars wouldn't trust him. Whatever the case, Ke'rii had gone off for a jog and instead had moped about, doing kriff knows what. Then he'd gone inside his apartment for a bit, before sending off his daughter and this mysterious individual. It was not according to the plan that they'd outlined, and when people didn't go along with plans, it usually meant that they were either forgetful, or up to some devilish trickery. Neither made good business partners.
Enough kriffing around. It was time to apply some pressure and remind him that they needed to get this thing done because Ke'rii was starting to weave webs with people Gharzog didn't know, and if he didn't move fast enough, he could end up entangled in a trap. Speed would only work in his favour here.
So as Ke'rii started coming back his way, Gharzog made back down the stairs to the lobby and leaned against a wall just around the corner. As the captain came walking down the stairs and appeared into his field of vision, he spoke up:
"Having a lovely jog, are 'ye?" Then without pausing, he added: "I should hope 'yer ready to get down to business now. No more kriffin' around."
Exephos; a haunted war-ravaged veteran.
Shad'ra; an indecisive ex-mandalorian.
Gharzog; a happy-go-lucky gun for hire.

Offline Mei

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #35 on: 07/05/17, 11:41:01 AM »
"Having a lovely jog, are 'ye? I should hope 'yer ready to get down to business now. No more kriffin' around,” the hunter spoke up.

Ke'rii shouldn't have been startled when Mr. Hat spoke, and he cursed himself internally for showing even the slightest jump.

Ke turned with a smile and nodded. “Had some personal matters to tend to,” he said, finally clueing the other in. “I want my daughter as far away from here as possible,” he pointed a finger, gesturing towards the dock. “Ain't no point getting her mixed up in any unforseen cross fire, you know? My sis’ will get her someplace safe,” he assured, vaguely.

He continued walking and gestured for Mr. Hat to follow as he proceeded down the stairs.

“I've got a friend coming with some gear,” he continued. “You know, stuff I didn't keep with me while stationed with the military. Hazmat, blaster rifle… she'll probably add some other goodies for me I haven't thought about.”

He counted ‘forty’ in his head as he reached the final step and looked over his shoulder at his new partner. “She's good like that, you know… the whole forward thinking thing,” he smiled and went into the restaurant.

The place was empty except for the service droids.

“But what would really help,” he rounded a table and sat down, looking at the hunter. “would be to have some kind of idea of our location in Nal Hutta. I'm sure the lovely Darth Karmic is eager to know too” he gestured for him to have a seat across from him. “What can you tell me?”
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Offline Kremon

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #36 on: 07/06/17, 01:41:03 AM »

Gharzog watched the man startle slightly at his presence and contented himself with the knowledge that he seemed to have remained hidden to the captain. Or he could be a very good actor. Which was also possible, and definitely something he wouldn't discredit with his mysterious type. Never paid to underestimate your bounty. Ever.
"Had some personal matters to tend to, I want my daughter as far away from here as possible. Ain't no point getting her mixed up in any unforseen cross fire, you know? My sis’ will get her someplace safe." Ke'rii stated, to which Gharzog gave no response, simply eyeing him from his place on the wall. He did note however that he addressed that woman as his sister... A handy little fact to have, so he filed it away with everything else he knew about the man. Ke'rii continued on across the lobby to which he uncrossed his arms and followed behind him at a distance of a few meters.
“I've got a friend coming with some gear. You know, stuff I didn't keep with me while stationed with the military. Hazmat, blaster rifle… she'll probably add some other goodies for me I haven't thought about.” The captain continued as they headed down the stairs and into the restaurant.
“But what would really help, would be to have some kind of idea of our location in Nal Hutta. I'm sure the lovely Darth Karmic is eager to know too. What can you tell me?” Ke'rii asked as he made his way around to a table and took a seat, before waving for he to do the same.
He begrudgingly sat, still distrustful. Now he had a choice before him though. Reveal the location of the ambush and give Ke'rii the details now... And run the risk that he'd set up his own ambush for Gharzog. Or run the equal risk that the man would come unprepared and the pirates would gun them all down. He chewed on it for a moment with Ke'rii's eyes on him, debating whether to explain or not. Even if the captain did set up an ambush, he'd still probably hold the advantage... After all, he knew Nal Hutta better than any of the offworlders.
"A'ight. I'll explain once, so make sure 'ye listen well, 'ey?" Gharzog returned, before launching into an explanation:
"Hutta's a polluted swampland punctuated by 'yer average factories, shanty-towns, and Hutt palaces. Place I'm workin' on as the ambush point is a swamp that's doublin' as a chemical dumpin' site for some of the factories and corporations around the area. All the water's filled with flesh-eatin' acids, but a good hazmat suit or clothin' made from the right treated leather'll keep it out."
After a pause, Gharzog continued:
"There's also the matter of the wildlife. Giant blood-suckin' gnats'll throw off a chap's focus unless 'ye spray on some repellant that's made by the locals which they harvest from the trees 'round the swamps. Then there's the mutated lizards as big as a Houk. They'll chomp on 'yer leg... Unless 'ye douse 'yerself in their musk. Won't smell too pleasant, but they won't bother 'ye that way."
He gestured towards Ke'rii's mouth with a gloved hand.
"A respirator and maybe some good goggles would be a right good idea, they would. The smog's full'a irritants that'll get 'yer eyes tearin' up and 'yer throat coughing in about ten minutes. The whole bloody world's hostile as hell, and that ain't even to mention the locals, 'ey? So my suggestion, walk cautious like." He finished.
Exephos; a haunted war-ravaged veteran.
Shad'ra; an indecisive ex-mandalorian.
Gharzog; a happy-go-lucky gun for hire.

Offline Mei

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #37 on: 07/06/17, 04:58:30 PM »
Ke'rii listened as Mr. Hat spill out the details of the location, appreciating the bluntness of his delivery. Finally, he thought, they could work as a somewhat-trustworthy team. He nodded and noted each detail as a bullet point in his mind. A checklist of possibilities to prepare for.

“Sounds de-lightful. Mind if I pass on a couple of these details to my friend? Doubt she's en route just yet, and even if she is, might just help her plan accordingly--by bringing proper equipment that is,” he assured the hunter. “I assume you already have gnat repellent and the lizard musk?”

Regardless, he would tell Alara... and Agent Athuuna. But letting Mr. Hat have the belief he could control such flow of information might just earn him a sliver of the man's trust.
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Offline Kremon

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #38 on: 07/07/17, 09:05:43 AM »

Gharzog tilted up his hat slightly, revealing only his eyes to give his supposed partner a disbelieving look with a single raised eyebrow.
"That's rather the point 'ere, ain't it? What kind of an ambush would we got goin' on if only two sods in the entire group knew how to deal with the environment, 'ey?" Gharzog asked. Technically, all his local friends knew how to deal with Nal Hutta just fine, they'd grown up in it after all, but he figured it'd probably be better to hide the fact that all his hired help was coming from locally sourced cantinas. Not only to protect his budding sense of professionalism, but also to hide any perceptions that could be made as to his background or where he came from if Ke'rii hadn't figured it out already. The accent and the knowledge of the terrain was probably a dead give-away, but those couldn't be helped.
"As for the preparations... Aye. I got the lot, but only for 'meself. Your end's up to you." He replied to the man's inquiry if he had the necessary supplies before pulling his broad-brimmed hat down low again and resting his booted feet up on the table. Good etiquette? Maybe not, but that wasn't what he was really going for here.
"My suggestion? Take a shuttle to Jiguuna, aye? Hop over to the market, and ask for their... How would 'ye call it in Basic... Foolhardy adventurer bundle. They'll give 'ye the lot 'ye'll need." At that, he couldn't help but chuckle. Oh, offworlders... They were absolutely doomed on Hutta. Be it the wilderness, the Hutts, or just a nice basic rip-off at a vendor's stall.
Exephos; a haunted war-ravaged veteran.
Shad'ra; an indecisive ex-mandalorian.
Gharzog; a happy-go-lucky gun for hire.

Offline Mei

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #39 on: 07/07/17, 11:25:06 AM »
There was a hint of amusement on Ke'rii’s face as he watched Mr. Hat, and he couldn't stop the smirk from crossing his face.

“Now, I know you've taken care of a few hunters that saw me on my way in here from the spaceport, but I'd just hate to see you lose out on this deal before we even get off this moon,” he chuckled, paused, and grinned as he leaned forward, elbows resting on the table.

He paused a moment, as if trying to get a better look under his new buddy’s hat before he tapped, and held just a beat longer than normal, as he triggered his cybercom. For Mr. Hat, he would only hear the one side.

Inwardly, Ke smirked. This truly was a game of who had the better advantage.

“Hey babe,” he grinned and watched Mr. Hat as he spoke to the person on the other end. “Your Huttese still up to par?”


On Tatooine…

Alara Slate was loading a duffle bag with a ML-29 series blaster rifle, which were carefully packed near a good load of grenades Ke hadn't asked for. Her holocom was situated on top of a crate so she could continue packing. Glowing as a blue hologram was the image of Mr. Hat, feet up, sitting opposite the caller on the other end.

“Better than yours,” she claimed, going over to another storage unit filled with different armour. She glanced at the holocom. “Who’s that? Your new pal?”

“Of course,” Ke'rii was heard through the comm, but not seen, as he answered her question.

“Nice hat,” she commented, trying to choose the best gear for her man.

“I've got a wonderful place for you to stop by before coming to Nar Shaddaa,” Ke continued. “You like Nal Hutta, right?”

Lara rolled her eyes. “Oh yeah, just the dump I've been dying to go to.” she heard him laugh. “You send me to the most luxurious of places.”

“Great, I knew you had been before,” Ke lied. “I need you to stop by Jiguuna and get me the uh… Foolhardy adventurer bundle. You heard of it?”

“No,” she glanced at the comm, but still only saw Mr. Hat.

“Ah perfect,” He said. “But make sure it is potent. I hate gnats and I really only want to be worried about being eaten by pirates and not some mutated lizards.”

Lara smiled. Gnat repellent and lizard musk, she noted, only somewhat familiar, but she could figure it out.

“So your friend there, he's local?” she asked.

“I don't know,” he answered. “But you know I'm good for it,” another misleading response to let her know his thoughts. “I always pay up.”

“You want me to do a search on him?” she went to her holocom and saved the hunter’s image. It was hard to make out his features under the hat and with the coat, and the fact he was sitting down. But she could easily see the bloke was bigger than Ke.

“Imperial creds, Republic creds,” Ke hinted. “Whatever they ask for.”

“Got it. He got a name?”

“Well, I don't know how much this stuff costs,” Ke exclaimed and laughed. “Just get the best you can find and as much as you can afford. I can transfer money if you need it.”

Lara grinned again. “You think you are so sneaky,” she laughed. “Got it. Imp databases, Republic databases. The whole shabang. And when you are free of your pal, you'll send me what you have,” she confirmed his message. “And I'll see what I can find locally too.”

“No-ooo,” he cautioned with a joking tone. “Don't cheap me out of the good stuff. I'll reimburse you.”

Lara nodded. “Got it, no prying locally.”

“Thanks, amant,” <sweetheart> Ke's voice softened. “Minmin larel valle.” <I love you.>

The cybercom went dead.


On Nar Shaddaa….

Ke offered Mr. Hat another grin as he slouched back in his seat. He held his hands out and shrugged.

“There, risk of losing me to some chump hunter averted.”
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Offline Kremon

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #40 on: 07/08/17, 09:54:26 AM »

Gharzog eyed the captain with care as he started speaking to some unseen person via his cybernetics. Well, he supposed he now knew that the implants were capable of communications. Good to know if that ever came up in future. If for whatever reason, he needed to legitimately capture the man, he'd need to make sure he included a powerful jammer in his list of tools to ensure that he couldn't contact anyone else.
“Hey babe, your Huttese still up to par?” Ke'rii asked, smiling to himself. The bastard knew he couldn't hear or see the other end, and was practically outright taunting him with it. He wanted to play that game? Well, he would try to surmise as much as possible from the conversation then double-check it all later, try and find a few more tidbits.
"Of course. I've got a wonderful place for you to stop by before coming to Nar Shaddaa, you like Nal Hutta, right?” Ke'rii spoke, whilst Gharzog looked down and pretended to fiddle with a knife he kept stuck down one boot. Whilst really, he listened carefully. The man had called whoever this was a 'babe', probably meant a woman then, Ke'rii didn't really seem like any other type. This woman was obviously being sent to Nal Hutta. Set up a few traps ahead of him, perhaps? Do some battleground preparation of Ke'rii's?
"Great, I knew you had been before, I need you to stop by Jiguuna and get me the uh… Foolhardy adventurer bundle. You heard of it?” The man continued on speaking.
Errand runner then, but one that had been to Nal Hutta before? A mercenary, perhaps?
 “Ah perfect, but make sure it is potent. I hate gnats and I really only want to be worried about being eaten by pirates and not some mutated lizards.” Came the next bit of conversation.
Nothing really surprising there, Ke'rii was sending this woman off to do his shopping. Perhaps he didn't trust Gharzog enough to leave the Dancer's Palace quite yet. Or perhaps he was sending her off for other reasons... Had he revealed too much with Nal Hutta's background? Had he judged the amount to give correctly, or had he shown where he'd come from in a moment where his talkativeness took over?
I don't know, but you know I'm good for it, I always pay up.” Ke'rii returned to some unheard reply.
Definitely some mercenary type, he figured. Perhaps it was a gun-for-hire that he kept on call to do things like this. Pick up gear, purchase munitions, that kind of thing.
"Imperial creds, Republic creds, whatever they ask for."
Discussing payment arrangements, was it? Frankly, he already knew that they'd prefer solid goods. Spice, weapons, munitions. More stable prices on the black market than any currency.
"Well, I don't know how much this stuff costs, just get the best you can find and as much as you can afford. I can transfer money if you need it." Ke'rii said with a laugh.
He was talking an awful lot about payment... Picky gun-for-hire perhaps? Maybe, just maybe. But he didn't like that laugh. Who laughed about emptying their coffers? No-one sane at any rate, and certainly not a businessman like Ke'rii's record indicated he was. Now that he thought about it, why would he go on about the kind of credits used? Ke'rii and his associates seemed to be underworld types, folks on the down low that knew the streets or at least enough about them to not have to discuss how to pay dealers. It didn't sit right with him, and he'd learned to trust his gut.
"No-ooo, don't cheap me out of the good stuff. I'll reimburse you." Ke'rii added still in that light-humoured tone. Still going on about payment, and still without much a care for the credits it would cost? There was definitely something going on here that Gharzog didn't like.
"Thanks, amant, Minmin larel valle.” Ke'rii said, the words unfamiliar. It sure wasn't Basic, Huttese, or any trade language he knew. No, he didn't like this one kriffing bit.
“There, risk of losing me to some chump hunter averted.” The captain said with a smile.
He'd play dumb to this for now, but he was going to be extra sharp from here on. Just in case.
"Ain't a hunter on this moon, or in the whole sector that's quicker than 'me draw. And I tend to shoot those that go pokin' around in a bounty I'm in on, and ask the questions later, aye?"

Exephos; a haunted war-ravaged veteran.
Shad'ra; an indecisive ex-mandalorian.
Gharzog; a happy-go-lucky gun for hire.

Offline Mei

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #41 on: 07/08/17, 05:20:28 PM »
The Larel Guerfel
En route from Tatooine to Nar Shaddaa

The jump from Tatooine over to Nar Shaddaa would be short, especially with the modifications Captain Alara Slate has done to her ship. The Larel Guerfel was a fast ship, and the mods put on her would shorten the trip by twenty-five percent; meaning she would be there four standard hours ahead of time.

And so what if Ke had instructed her to go to Nal Hutta first. The idea of leaving her ship, his gear, and the rest of her life docked at that toxic wasteland was out of the question. She had at least been to Nar Shaddaa and knew the place well. And getting a better look at the mysterious Mr. Hat was rather enticing… and might help her learn something about him.

The shortened trip had left Lara little time to learn as much as she could about the hunter. All she had to go off of was a horrible capture from the holocall earlier and the useless tidbits Ke had sent her. Her search had come up dry, except for a couple unsolved murders where the suspect matched the ‘wide-hat, long coat’ vague description. She needed to speak to people in this guy's territory, but Ke told her not to ask questions about him on Nal Hutta.

She sighed and sent her lack of findings on to Ke via an encrypted line, striking the send button with frustration. He’d be irritated, but certainly not surprised.

It would help to get a name. Why the kriff couldn't he just scan the hunter? Why hadn't he done that? It's not like he shied away from running data searches on persons of interest; he’d done it before.

Lara drank from her wine glass and leaned back in her chair, watching the starlines of hyperspace.

Was it a trust thing? she wondered. Was he trying to get this guy to trust him, or was Ke just counting on his dumb luck to save his ass again? Ugh, why did he throw caution to the wind? She felt she could scream at him. But maybe it was some honor thing… some sort of Ogasawara ‘play it fair’ tactic where they thought both sides played an honorable game.

Ke'rii was a fool. A damn, kriffin’ fool.

And was he really dumb enough to have that call in front of the hunter? What was he doing? How was his mind working because, kriff! Even she couldn't predict him after all these years. And what if his ‘new pal’ could read between the lines?!

Her navicomputer sounded, alerting Lara that the ship was approaching Nar Shaddaa.

She sat up, downed the rest of her wine and ran the sequence to smoothly pull the XS-Freighter starship out of hyperspace. She frowned as the Smuggler's Moon came into view, behind it, Nal Hutta.

Oh this was just going to be brilliant, she thought sarcastically as she made her approach.

And hopefully no other surprised Ke forgot to tell her about...
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Offline Noth

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #42 on: 07/12/17, 10:29:09 PM »
Athuuna cleared the hangar easily enough. A few false summons to other parts of the spaceport, a few bribes, a few guards shoved into security closets, and the space was clear to meet this Alara figure in quiet and privacy. When her ship touched down, the agent was there to greet her, a mercenary-looking helmet tucked under his arm. He looked every bit the pirate... but perhaps that was to be expected in a place like this.

Quickly, he considered his options - go with his true reason for being there, or create a ruse? 'Keep it simple,' came his thought. 'Don't share more than you have to, and don't make up any lies you don't need.'

He greeted her with a nod, keeping his stance casual. "Alara Slate, I take it? I'm a friend of Ogasawara. Extra security as you deliver the items he wanted."
Pubs

Bren: Jedi Archaeologist // Iirim: Padawan Spook // Zorru: Jedi Recruiter // Aybekk: Padawan Nerd
Seirion: Senatorial Aide // Varooth: Iridonian Politician // Ayrak Malid: Arbiter of Clans // Telen: Tiny Slicer

Imps

Urziya: Mandalorian 'Diplomat' // Terr: Mandalorian Chieftain // Majia: Pirate Princess // Athuuna: Agent Cyberneticist // Zhekrazh: Mysterious Sith

Offline Kremon

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #43 on: 07/14/17, 09:11:06 PM »

Late in the night; Nar Shaddaa

Gharzog strolled along a dank filthy street crowded with piles of rubbish and cast-offs; and that was only talking about the people. They themselves were surrounded by piles of thrown-away bits of electronics, old scrap, and an ever present smell of ozone, as factories pumped out pollution into the night sky. Fortunately, he was protected from it all. A respirator to block out the toxins in the air, a treated coat to avoid the sludge, and an arsenal to keep away the brigands.
Didn't mean he didn't feel sorry about the poor sods though. They congregated here, as spice addicts, fugitives, run-away Evocii or just down on their luck residents.
This was the side of Nar Shaddaa that wasn't all glamour and high life, the side that the average visitor and tourist didn't see. Further along the alleyway, it got a little better. They had tents and makeshift shelters here instead. A little shantytown crammed in the street between two buildings. Ragged cloth awnings extended out from where they'd be tied to pipes on the walls to provide some shelter and privacy to the residents. Some even had beds, dirty bedrolls neatly arranged despite the filthy ramshackle surroundings.
Most the people here were asleep, but those that were awake scrambled out of his way. He probably looked like an enforcer to them. The Hutt's thugs were always coming down here to make life extra difficult, usually when the Hutt in question wanted them gone from his little stretch of empire. Eventually, they'd move, migrate off to some other part of Nar Shaddaa before they weren't wanted there either.
It was sad perhaps, but after living one's whole life in Hutt territory, one got used to it. Hell, half the people currently living in Hutt territory probably started out life in a place just like this, or one not much better off. You learned to survive, or you died. It was as simple as that.
But he hadn't come here to think of Huttese philosophy, no he'd come here for information. His list of informants and people he networked with wasn't quite so large here as it was on Nal Hutta, but he did have some people to contact. In this case, he was looking for Qibbu. An Evocii living down here that dealt in information concerning spacers. Which was a bit odd considering he'd probably never set foot aboard a starship before. But presumably he, like all informants, had his ways. Gharzog peered through the gloom as he walked, watching for any telltale signs of him in the muck, before coming to a stop at a tent that had a simple wooden pallet out front with 'Qibbu' painted on it in Huttese and Basic.
He poked his head in to find Qibbu sleeping on a bedroll that was definitely more comfortable looking than the previous ones he'd passed. There was even a few folding chairs in one corner, and a datapad hooked up to a battery pack in the corner. Business must have been going well for the Evocii. Gharzog paused a moment to check the chrono on his forearm plate. Still rather late; hopefully Ke'rii was asleep in the Palace and hadn't pulled a runner. He could only hope he didn't, otherwise he'd have to take drastic measures to track him down again.
With that in mind, he nudged Qibbu with his boot who mumbled something about bread. He nudged him with his boot a little harder. A shift to the other side. With a sigh, he drew one of the blasters on his hip and blasted it into the air, though he did take the care to aim for an already existing hole in the cloth.
Qibbu jumped up, a shiv in hand, looking from side to side as he shouted: "Who is it! What do you want! I'll gut you!"
Calmly holstering his blaster, Gharzog stood there a minute as the Evocii blinked a second then spoke:
"Well, well, it's my old customer... Be right with 'ye." Before he stumbled over to the side to pick up a bottle of... Something, and chugging it down his gullet for a moment. Once he'd had his drink, he chucked the empty bottle to the side before picking up the datapad on the ground.
"So what can I do for you there, sssiiirrr." Qibbu asked, slurring the word sir.
"I'm here for information of course. What can 'ye tell me about the Crimson Dread pirates?" Gharzog asked, keeping his hands on his dual blasters and his expression neutral.
"Them? Loads. 'Specially since they're goinnnn around all crazy, man. Blowing up stations, messing with Chiss. Absolute pyschos, you know, mannn?" Qibbu returned, gesturing with his datapad.
"I'm going to need everything on 'em. How much'll it be?" Gharzog asked.
"Five thousand credits." Qibbu responded, all hint of a slur gone.
"Two thousand." He countered.
"Four thousand." Came the response.
"Two thousand, eight hundred... And I'll throw in a favour." Was Gharzog's return.
There was a moment of pause as he seemed to consider this.
"Me old customer... Pleasure doin' business with you, govvv." Qibbu stated, transferring over a file from his datapad to Gharzog's before turning and unceremoniously flopping back down onto his bedroll.
He raised an eyebrow, before turning and striding out. One bit of business successfully concluded. He'd read over the file once he was back at the Palace. Leaving Ke'rii alone, on his own, with nothing to keep him there but his conscience made his eye twitch.
Exephos; a haunted war-ravaged veteran.
Shad'ra; an indecisive ex-mandalorian.
Gharzog; a happy-go-lucky gun for hire.

Offline Mei

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Re: "Hunting the Hunted"
« Reply #44 on: 07/15/17, 05:44:08 PM »
Alara swung the duffle bag over her shoulder, swaying slightly off-balanced from its weight and momentum. She had to steady herself against the ship’s wall as she took a moment to check her map to note her route from the spaceport to the Dancer's Palace.

Of all places, he had to get himself stuck here? On Nar Shaddaa? Why not some place she knew like the back of her hand like Corellia? At least there she would have extensive knowledge, even contact. Even for him, Corellia could be considered home turf.

She sighed quietly… right… Keiko. Keiko had come here and for protection. The Dancer’s Palace was known for their security. It was a smart and stupid decision to go there. On one hand, no one could touch him. But on the other, he was caged.

Another sigh, this one heavier.

Ke’rii Ogasawara and trouble… it was like a match made from misfortune.

But he certainly had a way about him, she thought with a shake of her head and pressed the button to lower the ramp of The Larel Guerfel. She knelt down to pick up her own, smaller, bag. She wasn't planning on staying on the Smuggler's Moon long, but she, unlike Ke, always had a plan.

There was nothing worse than unexpected surprises.

And she hated surprises.

Surprises like finding an unknown man waiting for her in the hangar. Ke had mentioned nothing about anyone meeting her. She frowned, and narrowed her eyes. One hand on her bag, the other on the strap of the duffle bag. Her stride slowed as she came down the ramp, and she was about to drop everything and pull her blaster on the stranger when he spoke.

"Alara Slate, I take it? I'm a friend of Ogasawara,” he used Ke’s last name. Enemy or colleague? Perhaps both… with Ke’rii, it was always hard to tell who his actual, trusted friends were.

“Extra security as you deliver the items he wanted," the man added, perhaps to assure her.

On one hand, he could be a hunter trying to grab her and use her as leverage. If that were the case, she thought herself a quick enough draw to shoot him if she could drop her bags quick enough...

But on the other hand--and probably more likely considering the information the stranger had already divulged to her; her full name that wasn’t mentioned on the bounty, the items he was having her delivered, knowing her time of arrival… Could it be that Ke actually did set up extra security? It wouldn’t be the first time he forgot to mention something important.

She took a quick moment to look the man over. Helmet tucked under his arm, pirate-esque attire. He certainly looked the part of belonging on Nar Shaddaa. But Ke’rii didn’t have many ties in Hutt space… at least none that she knew about.

Perhaps this man was a colleague. Perhaps the two of them served together… which only meant he was an Imperial. Her stomach turned at the thought. If Ke’rii told the Imps about her (her name, her ship, whatever else ‘they found useful’, she’d kill him… but not really…).

Put your personal issues aside, she told herself. If this man was truly here to help Ke then she would work with him. She would work with the Empire only for Ke. For a moment she wondered how Ke’rii never aided the Alliance.

Her gaze went to the Imperial’s eyes. She gave him a hard look.

“Extra security, huh?” she adjusted the duffle bag on her shoulder, not about to release the cargo to the other. “Got a name? Credentials?” Not that those things couldn’t be faked, she mentally noted.

Why hadn’t he told her about this?



Dancer’s Palace
Solange’s Apartment

Ke’rii laid in bed. He was exhausted. This whole situation was exhausting and not at all how he had hoped to spend his leave. Keiko was safe… Alara was coming… and he still hadn’t heard from Karmic about what their numbers could be. She had connections, he assured himself over and over. This will be handled, dealt with and he’d be back to Iokath in no time.

He sighed heavily and lifted his arms to rest his head in his hands. He stared at shadows that danced across the ceiling from the lights of Nar Shaddaa’s nightlife. The Smuggler’s Moon never seemed to sleep… and neither had he… at least not well. He hoped he hid it well, but it was wearing him down. This game with Mr. Hat, the worrying, the planning and hoping for things to go his way just once. Not to mention the other lives affected by one, insane, bounty.

Keiko. Kol Darin. Mei’li. Tutix, and his uncle.

And now he was dragging Alara into it.

“Lara…” he spoke her name quietly as he felt his eyelids falling. She would be here by the time he woke up. She would be mad at him, as she usually was in her own ‘Alara way’. Slowly, he began to drift to sleep… Alara had a way of grounding his mind. He liked to think he thought more clearly when she was around…

Beep.

His eyes fluttered open, and it was hard to tell how much time had passed.

Beep.

He looked to his holocom resting at his side on the bed. The indicator light was blinking at him and for a moment he didn’t realise what was going on.

Beep.

A call… it was a call. He sat up and stifled a yawn as he answered his holo. He was rubbing his eyes into focus as the heavyset holoimage of his uncle Gung’chul appeared.

“He-eey,” he answered the call, mid-yawn.

“Good to see you are sleeping,” Gung’chul commented. “I’m sorry I woke you. Planet hopping tends to get you lost in time.”

He sounded serious, Ke thought and blinked his eyes and looked to the holo once again.

“What’s happened?” he ran his hand through his hair.

“They hit Kril’Dor,” Gung’chul informed, blunt. “They demolished that tibanna gas mine you invested in.”

The news woke Ke up as if he had been awake all night. “You’re kriffing with me.”

“Wish I were,” the other said.

“Casualties?”

“Few hundred.”

Ke looked away from the holocom, his expression giving away the string of curses running through his mind. First Kol Darin, now this. How many innocent lives were being taken just to draw him out? He wasn’t worth that!

“I also hear they were spotted near Csilla,” Gung’chul continued, grabbing Ke’s attention once again.

“They attacked the Chiss?!” bloody hell! This was a nightmare! He’d be an enemy to the Empire if he didn’t just willing hand himself over at this point!

“No,” his uncle assured him. “They drew back when the Chiss took a defense position, which is when they went on Kril’Dor.”

Ke’rii was fuming. “My life is not worth so many deaths.”

It would be easier just to hand himself over. Scrap the whole plan to fight them and just stop this unnecessary carnage. They were bold enough to get close enough to Csilla to cause the Chiss to take up a defense position. Were they just testing the waters? Or is this just the start of something bigger yet to come? If they could get to Csilla, who's to say they won’t hit Yavin IV and his sister and her family? Or Tatooine and the Oasis Lounge?

They were attacking his assets. But it was the blood of the innocents on his hands that he couldn't live with. Did Kenny understand that? Or did the boss pirate merely think damaging his money was enough to drive him out of hiding? Certainly the pirate had no moral concept to care for anyone.

But if Bloodthirst actually understood Ke’rii… he would know money wasn’t everything to him.

Safe harbors. Assets. What was next? Friends. Family.

Personal for personal.

Blood for blood.

“... just sayin’ that until we find them,” Gung’chul was speaking and Ke hadn't been listening until now. “there's no way of knowing who or where they'll hit next.”

Ke looked to his holocom. “You're right. I gotta go,” he ended the call abruptly, his thoughts running quickly through his mind.

He got out of bed and went to the computer terminal across the room. He was well aware of the Crimson Dread’s activity in the past, but it was time to update his knowledge. He began his search as Wheelie rolled up to him with his usual cup of morning caf.

“Thanks, buddy,” he smiled as he took the cup. It was going to be another long day...
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