The ordeal of their return flight home now a week behind them things begin to normalize. We find our characters getting back to the day to day existence they have established for themselves. Tor has returned to work; having written his own report of the events that transpired aboard The Undertow he resumes his role keeping the streets safe. For him, the case was closed.
After the initial questioning following the incident, Guy left without so much as a goodbye to his accomplices. Disappearing into the lower levels of Cloud City seemed natural for someone of his personal and professional background, Dani and Tor think little of it.
Dani took a few days off to settle before returning to the club. Upon her return she finds her Assistant Manager, an older Neimoidian named Rott Delros, overseeing operations. Rott informs her that, while she was out, her friend, and Club Manager, Lyn Syndulla, had called in sick the past few days. He goes on to mention that some tight lipped humans in black suits came in asking for Dani by name. When Rott explain that she was on vacation, they mentioned that they might come back in a few days. Dani went about business as usual, making a mental note to call Lyn to check in after work. Arriving home, she notices that she has messages on her home-comlink. The first was Lyn, explaining and apologizing for her absence, typical Lyn. The second was a CCPD Detective named Koth. He wanted to discuss the events aboard The Undertow, stating that it was standard procedure. Politely, he asked to get back to him in regards to a time and place to discuss things. Rummaging her pockets, Dani realizes she left her personal comlink at work. She hails a cab and heads back to retrieve it.
Arriving back at her club, Dani finds Tor waiting at the entrance. Surprised by this coincidence, she asks him what he needs. Tor asks if she had gotten any kind of attention in regards to The Undertow. She tells him about the message from Detective Koth. Tor mentions that he got a similar message and he came to the club to find out if anyone had approached her about it. He went on to state that he tried calling but got no answer and assumed that Dani would still be working.
Suddenly a noise, mechanical in nature, is heard from behind the building. They both think nothing of it and continue conversing until three individuals on noisy, modified swoop-bikes turn the corner next to the club and then into the alley behind it. His professional duty piqued, Tor walks to the edge of the building and stealthily peers into the alley. The three individuals had dismounted their respective bikes. In front, Tor could see that being, whatever it was, was much shorter than the two following; and it walked with a strange amble, definitely not humanoid. Looking further, Tor is able to see a shadowed, albeit large, figure sauntering down the opposite alley, a large bundle on it’s back, presumably some kind of carrying bag or satchel. In the center of the adjoining alleys behind the buildings stood a lanky-looking figure wearing a black hat and long coat, otherwise obscured thing the shadows cast by the single bright spotlight lighting the alleyways.
As the first ambling figure steps into the light, Tor sees that it is a greyish-brown skinned Dug, a bit thicker than average. His legs casually gripping the edges of his red leather vest, he saunters up to the figure in black. The Dug’s movement allows little to be concealed on his person, as Tor is able to clearly see the large knife and holstered blaster strapped around his waist.
Tired of waiting and wondering Dani sidles up to Tor and peers into the alley for herself, noticing the unfolding events, she also takes notice that the Dug’s bike has a distinguishing custom red paint job, as opposed to the other two plain looking bikes. Seeing Tor call for back-up, Dani decides to head back inside to turn on the exterior lights, in hopes of dissuading the meeting in the back of her club. She walks off as Tor finishes his call, waiting for back-up.
Peering back into the alley, Tor sees that the Dug’s body language and tone sounds as though he is upset. He waves his feet about and stabs a couple sharp pointed toes at the figure in black who remains calm and seemingly complacent.
Inside the darkened club Dani makes her way to the rear of the building to find the switch for the exterior lights. She stops next to the service exit and looks out the window to see if the meeting is still underway. From her angle, she is able to see the back of the figure in black. He nods calmly, his voice inaudibly low given the distance and door. Diagonally behind him, she spots three satchel-bags, stacked in a neat pyramid, two on bottom, one on top.
Outside, a CCPD Cloudcar arrives. It’s external lights shut off to avoid attention, a young male Human, Jan Barnen, hops out and jogs over to Tor, next to the alley entrance. After giving him a rundown of what happened, Barnen boldly marches into the alley, Tor follows. They pass the two that arrived with the Dug, an Aqualish and a heavy-set Human. Their conversation low and inaudible but noticeably slowed and non-threatening, they suspect that they are both inebriated or otherwise under the influence of something. Neither the Dug, nor the figure in black notices their approach in the darkness.
Unable to see the specifics of the meeting outside, Dani resolves to turn on the exterior lights and flips the breaker. With a sharp clack followed by a soft buzz she sees the soft green tint of the outside lights glow through the service exit windows.
The adjoined alleyways now illuminated in soft green light the Dug’s unintelligible ranting continues. The two other biker barely notice the change of scenery and continue jabbering to one another. The figure in black’s identity, though now fully illuminated, remains to be seen as a faintly religious-looking veil covers the face below the wide-brimmed hat.
The exterior lights now providing little mystery to the gathering, Dani exits the service door. “What the hell’s going on here?” she says, clearly inconvenienced. The Dug eyes her and continues his conversation. Without turning to face her, the figure in black removes one gloved hand from his coat pocket and raises it in reference to her question. A clear gesture of, “One moment, please…”, not entirely discourteous, but curious nonetheless.
Unable to escape detection any longer, Tor, with one hand on his blaster and the other hold his badge aloft, calls out to the Dug and black clad figure. “How are you gentlemen this evening?” he says in his most non-threatening tone. The Dug spins, both his feet in the air in a display of compliance and innocence. He grumbles, “No hurt, no hurt…” in the best basic he can manage. The figure in black, one hand in his coat pocket, one hand still raised to Dani remains motionless. Before Tor can question further there is a loud pop as all the surrounding lights blink into blackness. The relation of the surrounding building offers no chance for moonlight to reach the alleyway so everyone finds themselves in the thickness of pitch black. A hushed shuffling can be heard before the soft metallic cling of the Dug’s ciragga lighter ignites.
In the dim orange glow of the lighter, Dani notices that the figure in black is gone and the stacked bags remain. The Dug waves the lighter about as if he is searching for the figure himself.
Tor, removes a glowrod from his pocket and ignites it. A light bluish hue bathes his immediate vicinity. He notices the absence of the figure in black as he hears a subtle commotion behind him. Spinning, he sees the heavy-set human ambling towards Barnen’s extended hand. The officer is clearly attempting to gesture for the man to stop, but he presses forward, with the Aqualish shaking his head in exasperation. Tor half turns and shouts at the Dug. “Get down on the ground and slide me your weapons, NOW.” he says, authoritatively. In his periphoral, he sees the Dug lower and hears the weapons being slid. “Now tell your buddy to stop whatever the hell he’s doing.” Tor shouts over his shoulder.
In the dim light from her position, Dani is able to watch the Dug lower himself as ordered. Without being able to hear the command Tor gave the Dug, she thinks nothing of him sliding over a glowrod. What strikes her as odd is him conversing with Tor while the officer’s back is turned. “I can’t talk to that one.” the Dug grumbles as he effortlessly hops upright, his eyes locked on Tor. “He only listens to the other one guy.” he goes on, nimbly hopping over to the stacked satchels. Nearly effortlessly, he tosses two of the heavy-looking bags on to a rack mounted to the back of his swoop-bike. As the bags touch down, a soft blue light illuminates around the perimeter of the rack and the bags seem to halt immediately. Shouldering the last bag, the Dug acrobatically tumbles his way over and on to his bike. “Hey!” Dani shouts as the Dug fiddles with the ignition panel on his swoop.
At the sound of Dani’s shout, Tor spins and shouts at the Dug, “FREEZE!”. “No hurt, no hurt…” the Dug replies, nto looking up from the ignition panel. In a moment, his bike thunders to life and begins to move towards the alley behind Dani. Tor unholsters his blaster and fires a stun round past Dani striking the rear of the swoop as it turns the corner. Tor hears the vehicle’s engines sputter and slow to silence. He spins on Officer Barnen, “Can you handle them?” he barks. “Sure, sure” he says, noticeably undisturbed by the situation. “He was just messin’ around. These guys are alright.” he follows up, jerking a thumb back at the two snickering bikers.
Dani watches as Tor sprints past her to catch up to the fleeing Dug. Shrugging this off as a matter for the authorities, she walks back inside her club. She hits the exterior lights breakers, just in case and re-locks the service doors. As she approaches the entrance doors she is able to make out the Dug’s voice, murmuring to himself on the other side. “That must be where his bike quit on him.” she thought, waiting for the murmuring to stop. Through the door she can almost make out Tor’s voice, no doubt calling for more assistance.
Outside, Tor finishes up his transmission to CCPD Dispatch only to be answered with white noise. Whatever took out the lights must have knocked out his comlink as well. He arrives at the entrance of the alley just in time to see the swoop roar back to life. As the bike speeds down the street, away from the club, the entrance door opens and Dani steps out. “Does your com work?” Tor asks, hurrying toward her as she locks the doors.
“Stang.” Dani mutters as she takes out her keys again. “I forgot that’s what I came here for, it’s inside.”
Tor continues his pace as he runs past her and rounds the corner. Dani unlocks the doors and heads back inside to retrieve her com.
He stops at the front of Barnen’s cruiser and peers into the alley. Barnen sees him and raises and eyebrow, looking as though he has something to say. Past the bewildered rookie, Tor spots the bikers conversing as they walk to their bikes. “Don’t let them leave!” he shouts as he runs over. “What? Why? They didn’t do anything. Where’s the Dug?” Barnen asks. Tor approaches the Aqualish biker and grabs him by the shoulder, “Where’s he going?” Tor demands, pointing in the direction of the escaping Dug. “Hell if I know. Flur just pays us to ride with him sometimes. Sometimes he asks us to stay after the drop sometimes he splits. This looks like splitting.” Tor runs over to one of the bikes and hops on. Jabbing his CCPD Security tool into the ignition panel, the bike roars to life, “I’m confiscating this.” he says to the bikers, “You” he gestures to Barnen. “Radio for back-up in the cruiser, the surge knocked out comlinks.” Tor speeds towards the alley, “I’m going after the Dug. Keep them HERE.” he shouts back as he turns the corner out of the alley, the bike roaring to acceleration.
Inside, Dani finds her comlink on the counter next to the safe, right where she left it. She tries to get a line to call for a cab but is answered by white noise. She picks up the club com and makes the call. She sees Tor speed down the street away from the club as she locks up. Minutes later, her cab arrives. Settling herself in the passenger side the car lifts off. Out of the canopy she sees a swarm of CCPD cruisers arrive. She exhales at the timing, thankful she escaped the gauntlet of questioning she knows to be associated with police activity on Cloud City. Allowing herself to relax, she watches the city fade away as the cab drifts into the clouds.
The Dug named Flur casually coasts down the dark boulevard. Behind him, Tor drifts closer, hidden behind the headlight of his confiscated swoop.
Tor edges the throttle and drifts in, trying to get a better view of the markings on the Dug’s bike. The distinctive red paint job looks as though it’s been made to fit in with others. Perhaps part of a set, or an homage to something.
Suddenly, the Dug’s bike rumbled and quickened, increasing distance between them. Tor sped to follow. In a moment the red bike’s repulors shone and the swoop raced ahead, turning a corner. Tor gripped the bars and wrenched his swoop to follow. The two bikes growled down the barren streets.
Tor unholsters his blaster and fires a stun round into the back repulsor of the Dug’s bike. The light flickers and dims. Wobbling, the bike loses some of its acceleration. The Dug scrambles at his instrument panel trying to right the bike as Tor continues firing. The rear repulsor sputters and dies sending the back of the bike to the duracrete street. Sparks spout from the contact. The red bike’s glowing amber tail illuminates the sides of the passing buildings. Gunning his throttle, Tor speeds to the Dug’s side to get along side him. His run is stopped short as the Dug swings the back end of the back, sending sparks arms the front of his swoop.
Tor slows a bit before hitting the boost on the modified racer. The engines hum and roar as the repulsors send the vehicle flying forward. Tor pulls right beside the escaping Dug. His blaster aiming squarely at the simian creature he shouts, “Next one goes through your skull! Stop the bike!” The Dug, Flur, punches at his panel. The vehicle begins to lose speed as Tor sees the Dug tighten his grip. The red bike screams forward simultaneously with Tor’s trigger finger. His shot nails the rack of satchels mounted on the bike’s rear. The blue light flinches as a bag falls and tumbles past him. Tor continues firing, eventually striking the front repulsor. The vehicle spins, careening into a lightpole. The vehicle sits, crumpled around the base of the lightpole, smoking. The Dug lays, moving slightly, a few yards away. He warily makes his way to his feet. As Tor pulls in to the scene, The Dug grabs a satchel and trots away, at a hobbled pace. Tor dismounts and jogs after him. Now limping, Flur, satchel dragging behind him, slumps into an alley. Tor unholsters his blaster and makes sure it’s on stun as he rounds the corner after him, walking.
He finds the alien, weakly dragging his luggage and places his boot on his back. Leaning down, he unbuckles the belt with the knife and blaster and tosses it away before hooking bindercuffs on the Dug’s arm’s. “No hurt, no hurt” he winces, holding his small feet up. Tor steps over and unzips the bag, finding the small bindles of various kinds of narcotic spices in various stages of manufacture. “Who is the man in black?” Tor asks, reserved. Flur grunts to find a comfortable position against the building on the floor. “I don’t know. He is man in black, always. That is how I know him.” Flur answers. After a moment of silence he mutters, “I have name. Maybe if you help, I can give you name.”
“Give me the name and I won’t kick your ass.” Tor replies, noticing the Dug’s flexing for the second time. “He’s trying to break the cuffs, idiot.” he thinks.
The Dug attempts to hide his efforts by shifting his weight. Tor casually pulls the trigger, sending a stun round into the tiny creature’s chest. The Dug’s frame hits the wall like he’s been kicked. Coughing, he weakly slides away from his previous spot. A foul odor slowly wafts through. Tor squats down next to him, “So how about that name?”
“Ha, I can’t give you something for nothing. Maybe I stay to jail and no prison, then I can give you name, yes?” Flur grumbles, still churning from the hit. He smiles as the distant sirens come into range. Tor quickly hits him again, twice. The Dug, grunts and hacks as his body releases from the hits. He laughs as he coughs, shaking his head, “I think your other friends don’t deserve name. You are tough, strong. You earn name. Them? No, nothing.”
Tor holsters his baton and speaks, “Ok, I can try to get you a plea bargain if you give them something, anything. Give me the name and I will make it easier on you.”
The Dug eyes him warily. His lips curl into a broken looking smirk. “Kana Onari. That is name.”
Tor stands up and holsters his blaster as he calls the officers over. He steps in and quickly shoves the Dug with his boot, sending him sliding, shoulder first into the unpleasant mess he made earlier.
“Kind of pretty name, like a girl’s name. Pretty name for pretty girl.” The Dug mumbles as he is dragged off.
Tor calls an officer over to explain the events of the evening, favoring the events of chase with the Dug, as he agreed.