Author Topic: Vaelen Scrap & Salvage: Metal & Mesh in Bulk!  (Read 20788 times)

Offline Rinny

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Re: Vaelen Scrap & Salvage: Metal & Mesh in Bulk!
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2014, 10:54:32 PM »
The day wore on with most of the crew of the Hooded Crow keeping to themselves.  Minik mostly stayed on the bridge monitoring the systems that had been upgraded since their last long haul trip, sometimes taking a stroll down to the galley in the hopes of striking up a conversation with their newest crewmate.  The Sullustan was probably the only one eager to hear some new stories as he was pretty sure he'd heard all of the ones Nash and Milo had to tell.  However Sanj had kept to himself in his new quarters and Milo had told Minik he was uninterested in discussing the slicer when he had brought it up the one time they'd crossed paths.

After cleaning up the med bay, Milo spent the afternoon watching the HoloNet in the common room, but retreated back to his own quarters after Minik had started pestering him.  Not that Milo blamed him, he'd been alone with Nash for a year and Minik was happy to finally have some more people around.  Something about Sanj had rubbed him the wrong way, maybe it was that he was taking his sister's position, or that Nash had sacrificed something of herself to save him though he wasn't clued in to the whole story of the Hutts and where the sudden wealth she had to buy his freedom had come from.

As for Nash, after Milo's concoction had cured her headache and slightly rolling stomach, she had promptly crawled back into her bed and caught up on some much needed sleep.  It was a heavy, dreamless sleep and upon waking she felt refreshed and much more like her old self.  She took her time getting out of the bed and picking up the various discarded clothes and items that had collected on the floor.  With only Minik around both of them had become lazy and disorganized, but now with a full roster and things returning to some semblance of normal, they would have to discard those bad habits.

In picking up the previous day's clothes that had been discarded in the washroom that morning, Nash noticed something she hadn't before.  A small data stick slipped from the fabric and landed on the floor.  She picked it up and ran her fingers over it thoughtfully.  It had to have been Torlin that slipped it in, she would have remembered someone doing it earlier that day but after the two of them had gotten together and the drinks had started flowing she's not sure she would have noticed if a speeder had run them over.  She did remember that he was quite cautious about letting anyone else approach her which was why she had let him escort her back to her ship.  For how they had originally met, he turned out to be a rather interesting fellow and Nash had doubted that was the last she'd see of him.  Now seeing this data stick he had stealthily slipped her, she knew their paths would cross again.

Nash slipped the stick into her computer console and sat down in her chair.  The data it spat back out was that the stick was blank.   Leaning back in her chair she ran her fingers back through her hair, how very peculiar.

~*~

Sanj had finished sorting through about a third of the things in his quarters and made an even bigger mess, though a slightly more organized mess.  The tray of food that the protocol droid had brought him was licked clean and was balancing precariously on top of a tower of datapads.  Sanj wasn't sure if it actually tasted good as he had practically inhaled it and was thinking about going to look for the galley to get some more.

The door chime sounded pausing his spelunking through boxes and thoughts of food.  "Come in."

The door slid open revealing the Captain of the ship sporting a fresh change of clothes.  He remembered she had been wearing a pair of severely short shorts and a baggy low-cute blouse, but now looked more the part of a freighter Captain in dark trousers and a short blue jacket shrugged over a more modestly cut white shirt.  His own clothes which had been donated to him he suspected by the Doc didn't fit nearly as snugly.  There was a several centimeter height difference between the two and Milo was obviously more well fed than Sanj.

"We'll be resupplying tomorrow, you should be able to find something better fitting."  Nash noted after looking him up and down.  "I know you don't need any more of these,"  she handed him another datapad.  "But it's important."

"What is it?"  Sanj took it and looked at the screen, it didn't take long to figure out what it was.

"It's your contract.  Even though your employment isn't exactly voluntary, I like to be up front about what's expected--from both parties."

In the brief moments he'd been around the Captain, he wasn't sure yet what to make of her.  She was cocky enough to bargain with a Hutt when she hadn't been in the position to warrant bargaining.  But there was a tension on the ship that he guessed extended beyond their need for a new slicer.  "I knew Hutt's liked extravagance, but that's a lot of digits."  He said after a moment of scrolling through the text.  "So everything I earn will be applied to the balance?"

"Ideally.  You can spend your credits how you wish, but know that I do take debts very seriously."  She took a glance around the room, searching for a way to transition away from the dark tone of their conversation.  "Any supplies you need will come from the ship's fund, just make me a list."

Sanj glanced around the room as well, as if he would need anything more to add to this mess, but there were things that had been confiscated by his former jailers that he would like to replace.  Like the previous occupant many of his tools had been hand crafted, cobbled together from various other components and more than anything else would take time to reconstruct.

The Captain shifted slightly in the awkward silence as if weighing whether to continue the conversation.  She turned and took a step out of the door, then stopped and put her hand in her pocket.  It all looked very peculiar to Sanj as she quickly turned back to face him and then shut the door behind her.  Nash pulled her hand out of her pocket and held out a small grey data stick to him.  "Someone with questionable motives gave that to me."

Curiosity suddenly piqued, Sanj reached to take the data stick from her, but she pulled it back and held it close, still struggling with her request and her trust.  "What's on it?"

"It's appears to be blank."

"Appearances are often deceiving."

"Indeed."  Finally she stretched out her arm and handed him the mysterious item.  "If it's dangerous, I can't have it infecting the Crow's computer core."

Sanj gave an amused grunt, as if he could be so foolish.  "Is that something your former slicer would have done?"  It was a callous and tactless thing to say about someone who for all accounts was a revered and missed person, not to mention family.  He had never been adept at socially acceptable human behaviors, and he was interested to see how his new crew reacted when pushed.

With a pause, Nash looked across the room as if she were looking back at a memory and a sad smile crossed her face.  "Yes, that's exactly what Lisette would have done."  She shook her head and looked back at her young recruit.  "I would appreciate if you kept this between us."

He gave her a smirk before offering a sarcastic salute and an "Aye, aye Captain."
« Last Edit: January 24, 2014, 08:22:48 PM by Rinny »

Offline Rinny

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Re: Vaelen Scrap & Salvage: Metal & Mesh in Bulk!
« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2014, 07:32:13 PM »
Goodbye, brother.

The words echoed in his head though they had never really been spoken.  Lisette was special; special in a way that had to be hidden, kept secret and safe.  Milo wasn't sure if it was her unique gifts or being hidden from the galaxy that had given her a particular appreciation for life and the peculiar way she interacted with those around her.

Tucked away in his memories was a string of images: an old mountain road  that looked to have been treaded by feet, hooves, and wheels--not the rush of air from repulsorlift.  There was a mud and stone house with a smoldering fire pit; no technology of any sort in sight, not even a solar battery for lights.  An old woman smiled at him, patted his cheek, and gave him a stick with a string on it and told him to go catch some dinner from a nearby stream.

Milo rubbed at his face as if trying to rub the memories out.  He knew why it had suddenly bubbled to the surface, it was the only trip they had taken as a family of four; it was the last time Lisette had been allowed out in public.  He was sitting on the edge of the mezzanine above the cargo bay with his legs dangling over the side, his arms resting on the center metal railing as he looked out over the mostly empty bay.  Behind him the door slid open and he could hear the sudden, sharp intake of breath and the pause in her step.

"Born twenty years on either side and she could have been a Jedi."  Milo could almost feel Nash raising an eyebrow at him as she took a few tentative steps into the hold and the door shut behind her.  He patted the spot next to him and offered her a small smile when she settled in next to him, her form stiff as she seemed unsure where this conversation was going.

He gazed back out into the bay and gave voice to the memory that had been plaguing him that afternoon.  "When she was about four, I guess, I was ten years older so I was an obnoxious teenage boy who hated that I was going on this low-tech camping excursion with my parents and annoying baby sister."  The self-deprecating start earned him a small laugh from his Captain.  "There was this old woman who sent me off to go entertain myself and when I came back... everything was different."

"She was some sort of witch or old Jedi that had managed to escape the Emperor or something.  My parents took Lisette there because they became afraid to send her to school or take her to a doctor."

"Was she sick?"

Milo shook his head but didn't look at her, still staring out and the vast empty space.  "She was healthy, happy, but she wasn't normal.  If someone found out--"

Nash put her hand on his arm and interrupted him.  "I know."

Milo knew that Nash's father had been a bounty hunter though she kept much of her life before the Crow private.  Jedi killing had been lucrative for intrepid hunters after Palpatine's rise to power.  It wasn't a stretch to imagine Nash's father cashing in on that action.

"When we got home my father soundproofed the sublevel of our townhouse, built these cabinets on a hinge to hide the door, and a few months later they told people Lisette had died.  They even had a wake in our house with the neighbors--to stand there and grieve for a child who was still alive, all alone right below our feet."  Milo felt sick, just as he had that day.  His parents had made an impossible decision and he still resented them for it.  He didn't even care that they blamed him for her death, at least she had been free.

"I'm so sorry,"  Nash said in a quiet voice, choked with guilt.  "I was such a bitch to her..."

Milo looked back at her, a smile playing on his lips.  "To be fair, you're a bitch to everyone."  He put his hand over hers still on his arm,  "Hey, you didn't treat her like she was some broken doll and she loved you for it."

Nash shook her head, trying to keep the emotion off her face and out of her voice.  "No, she hated me.  And this... this is all my fault."

He wanted to be supportive and comforting to this woman who was steel and ice and rarely let any of her walls down or her vulnerabilities show, but he wasn't going to let her wallow in regret.  "No."  Milo stated firmly, the outrage quickly building up inside him.  He squeezed her hand tightly, not with any sort of affection but warning.  "You don't get to defile her sacrifice with your guilt."

Nash looked at him in shock, but he continued.

"She was so thankful that we took her on this ride.  And she had her quirks, and was socially inept, but this was the closest thing she ever had to a home and she gave everything to save it--to save us."  He pulled himself away from her and stood up, taking one last look across the cargo hold.  "The window to grieve is closing, no more drinking away the guilt or moping about.  I'm ready for this company to get back to making credits."

The sad look of regret was replaced as anger flared across her features.  Nash got to her feet and stamped over to him, a stiff index finger jabbing him fiercely in the chest.  "I give the orders around here."

"Then do it.  Run the damn ship."  Milo turned away from her and headed out the door.

Nash threw her hands in the air exasperated.  "You have more mood swings than a pregnant gundark!  What do you think I'm doing!"  She continued to shout after him as he walked away.  "Jackass!"