Hey, folks! I recently relaunched my blog “The Nexus of Writers” so that it was on WordPress! If you want to check it out, here’s the link.
And the main part of the post, part of a Star Wars fan-fiction short story I’m writing:
Leo woke without moving, without even his breathing changing. He had grown used to this way of life. He’d gotten used to the danger involved with surviving in the Underworld. He heard the door open.
“He’s asleep,” a voice noted.
“Be careful,” a second voice warned. “This kid’s caused Jabba a lot of trouble.”
Leo let out a small gasp- nothing big, but it alerted the two bounty hunters. Leo spun out of bed and angled his blaster at them. “No one moves.”
Something’s wrong, Leo realized. They’re grinning. I’m playing into their hands.
“Thought you might say that,” the Nikto laughed. The burly human just stood silently. “But see, we need you to come with us.”
“I won’t,” Leo growled. “So back off.”
“Jabba’s offering you a bargain,” the Nikto responded. “Perform one job, and he not only tells you how to find your mother, but he lets Kixi go.”
Leo’s eyes widened involuntarily.
“So choose,” the burly human finally said. “Do you want to save your sister and find your mother? Or is your pride more important?”
One job. That’s it. One job, and I’m done.
Leo angled his blaster at the burly human.
Just do it. Accept the job. You’ve done dozens before, why is this one any different?
But Jabba wouldn’t make such a daring bargain unless it was a difficult job, and he certainly would have a few tricks prepared for when Leo became expendable. Besides, his mom had gone off the grid on purpose- she didn’t want to be found.
I have to do this. For Kixi.
He dropped his blaster, and accepted the chains.
Leo waited in his cell for a long period of time, though he lost track of precisely how long he spent waiting. All he knew was that it was too long…something was happening, and he didn’t like it. Finally, he heard a door opening, and went to the bars.
One of Jabba’s majordomos entered and approached Leo’s cell, and sneered at him. “Little thief,” he snorted. “You certainly make a mess of things, don’t ya?”
“Take me to Jabba,” Leo ordered him. “I’ve waited long enough.”
The man chuckled. “You don’t call the shots. The big man does. And his deal is simple: steal from a residence on Alderaan.”
“Who’s the target?” Leo asked cautiously.
“You’ll find out on arrival,” the majordomo hissed.
“I won’t accept the job unless I know who to prepare for,” Leo insisted. The other hesitated, glared at Leo, and finally nodded.
“She’s a rich Pantoran who has ignored Jabba for too long,” the majordomo admitted. “Her name is…unnecessary. She is known as Chári, and that is all you need to know.”
Leo snorted. “I doubt that. There’s always a catch to these missions. Why not send in Han Solo or someone else?”
“Han Solo has yet to earn Jabba’s respect,” the Hutt’s minion responded. “And it is a sensitive mission. You are the only available resource that actually specializes in breaking and entering. And as you know, Alderaan deals with high-tech defenses.”
Leo rolled his eyes. “Find. One last condition: I pick my team. I need to know who I am working with.”
“So long as they work for Jabba, we have no quarrel with that condition,” the man relented.
Specializations: Heavy weapons, ordinances, and explosives
Other Notes: Messing with her is messing with Jabba. She works directly for the big man, and thus should be taken entirely seriously
Leo thought for a moment. “That…could pose problems. But as much as I hate to admit it, we need the heavy weapons bit.”
Specializations: Lockpicking, stealth, mines
Other Notes: Under proper leadership, is an excellent infiltrator, however lacks independent thinking
Leo liked Ja’ac’s profile immediately. If they betray me, isolating him will make my job significantly better. “He’ll work fine.”
Specializations: Light weapons, EMP ordinance, light freighters
Other Notes: Loyalties unknown, but heavy in debt with no choice but to help Jabba. When she resists authority, discipline may be needed, and will be left up to the squad leader’s decision.
AUNT NEBULA! Leo’s mind was screaming. Obviously, Jabba’s people hadn’t discovered the connection between Nebula and Leo, which was a miracle. Any bit of classic investigation would quickly reveal the connection. That meant Leo had three goals, now:
Find his mother.
Rescue Aunt Nebula.
Yeah. A piece of cake. What could possibly go wrong?
The moment Leo walked into the room to meet his new crew, he gave Nebula a stern look, and she gave him a subtle nod to show she had received the message.
“So you’re all my suicide-squadmates, right?” Leo joked. Alena frowned, however Ja’ac burst into snort-filled laughter and elbowed the tough Zabrak.
“We’re here for the job, not for your stupid crew,” Alena retorted. “We’re gonna take the cargo, and get out…and then we’re done with you.”
Leo shrugged. “Fine by me. What are we stealing, anyways?”
“Credits,” Alena shrugged, “what else?”
“Now, see, I know that’s not the case,” Leo observed. “You referred to the object in question as the ‘cargo’ which indicates we’re not stealing credits directly. Chances are, this is a retrieval operation that some third-party is planning on paying a boatload of money for. Since this is a private residence, and Chári isn’t any sort of political or military target, it certainly cannot be weapons, codes, or blackmail material.” He paused for a moment. “No, I am not a nerd for doing my research, I’m just prepared.”
Alena frowned. “The object is tagged as the Telum. Its importance is not essential information for you.”
“I can’t steal something unless I know what I’m looking for,” Leo countered. The two glared for a moment before Leo added, “I’m the captain of this mission. If I need information, I need information.”
Alena scowled. “It’s encased in a chromium orb. That’s all you need to know.”
Sensing that was all he would get out of her, he sighed. “Fine. Let’s get this show on the road.”