View Full Version : Look Down (part 1)

10 January 2005, 01:03 PM
A lone figure stood on the narrow ledge outside of the Senate’s newly dedicated Department of Military Research and Development, a small subcommittee charged with the task of reviewing and presenting new military weapons to the Senate. Since the Battle of Geonosis, several large starship and weapons firms had begun producing designs for new arms and equipments to aide the fledgling army, and were pushing them onto the Senate in an attempt to acquire high paying Republic contracts. In an effort to streamline the development of military equipment, the DMRD was formed from some of the most experienced Senators and former Judicial Department heads.
The DMRD facility was located in the upper levels of Coruscant, high above any recognized traffic lanes. It had cost Nicoli Whitelight quite a few credits to aquire transportation to the edifice, and even then, he could not fly within half a kilometer without endangering his cover. From his landing zone on the Laize Corporate Center, Nicoli had been forced to navigate a breathtaking series of leaps and falls through the dark Coruscant cityscape to arrive at the building, where he proceeded to climb the sleek metallic surface of the DMRD building. Whether or not Nicoli could do it had never been a concern. The issue was whether or not he could do it without anyone noticing. But he had chosen to take the impossible route. No one ever watches the impossible route.
Nicoli stood motionless for a long moment, feeling the Force fill and surround him, bringing strength to his tired muscles, clarity to his mind, and calm to his nerves. The transparisteel window was cold against his back, and the thin night air barely filled his tired lungs. He took a deep breath and closed his eyes, using an old Jedi meditation technique that he hadn’t remembered using since he had been banished. The night was far from over, and he would need all the calm that he could muster.

Khalin checked himself in the faint reflection of the transparisteel door, and straightened a crease in his long jacket. Tonight he was Lieutenant Winlan, executive for Subtech Enterprises and hero of the Battle of Chenna. His reptilian eyes squinted against the bright lights of the DMRD lobby. The newly remodled building still glistened, the new paint fresh and flawless, still smelling of topcoats and sealants. The young Twi’lek behind the secretarial desk was equally fresh and flawless, her light perfume wafting across the spacious lobby. As he approached, Khalin noticed the subtle scars on her wrists, where slave binders had once held her prisoner. He smiled to himself, as his eyes met hers. Former slaves had often already lost their independence and willpower. The job had just seemingly gotten much easier.

On the sunscorched world of Tatooine, a tall human businessman sat uneasily in the great chamber of Jabba’s palace. The palace was nearly empty, as a result of a high stakes race taking place nearby, though the gentleman could hear the hushed words of one of the Hutt’s business managers. The elderly twi’lek majordomo shook slightly as he spoke, his wrinkled lekku twitching nervously. Finally, he set the communications device on a small table, and turned. “Our operatives on Coruscant report that there is a problem. Another already seeks the plans.”
The human’s face contorted in frustration. “Of course others seek the plans. Half the arms builders in the galaxy want those plans. But I want them more. Tell your men I will double my price.”
The twi’lek nodded. “It is your money, Mister Quen”

He hadn’t expected results so quickly, but it just went to show how hot the target was. Blaadalaah nearly howled at the new payscale, dividing the money in his head amongst himself and his seven compatriots. There was no doubt that the eight Wookies could get into the office and bust the safe, there was little worry for the young Faleen con artist that had entered only moments before, and even less concern for the Coruscanti police force that would arrive shortly thereafter. Blaad knew that, in an even fight, his band would emerge victorious. The police would only serve to delay them. Delays they could not afford to suffer, especially on a planet full of Jedi.
Blaad had never faced a true Jedi, though he had once seen an apprentice disarm over a dozen guards. Truly Blaad feared no man, though to him, the Jedi were more than mere men. He checked his power pack and looked back to his lieutenant. With one silent nod, they began their trek through the urban jungle of Coruscant.

The young secretary’s eyes were pinned to Kholin, her fingertips gently resting against the back of his hand. The young Faleen smiled arrogantly, placing a finger beneath her chin. The pheromones that he projected seemed to catch her completely unawares. Her breathing accelerated, her chest rising in short sudden gasps, filling her lungs with Kholin’s subtle scent. Her eyes fluttered, and her long head-tails rubbed together anxiously. “Yes sir, Mister Winlan. The office you are looking for is on the top floor. You’ll need your clearance codes to get above floor G-79 though.”
Kholin nodded. “Yes, of course.” He turned to walk towards the turbolift, reaching into his right coat pocket. He didn’t have a code cylinder, nor did he have any idea what the proper codes were. The turbolift would be nearly impossible to hotwire without tripping at least a thousand alarms, though he was sure the band of Wookie mercenaries outside would take the fall for his crimes if he were to time it correctly. He bit his lip, slowing his step. Sometimes necessity truly was the father of invention.
Turning slowly, he returned his gaze to the secretary, releasing another wave of pheromones. He could see her noticeably shiver as the scent hit her nostrils, her body relaxing as little beads of sweat formed on her forehead. She glanced up, and, seeing that the Faleen was looking back at her, quickly turned away. Kholin smiled. “Miss? I was wondering if you’d like to accompany me. It is a slow night after all, and the security guards can handle any concerns.” She nodded slowly her eyes closing, overwhelmed by his scent. She wouldn’t be safe here anyways. In just a few moments those oafish wookies would barge into the lobby, more than likely killing everyone present, including her. Kholin had crossed their paths more than once, and though they claimed to be mercenaries, the Faleen knew they were nothing more than well armed thugs. “Plus, I would really like a bit of time alone with you. Maybe we could get a bite to eat after your shift?”
The girl’s eyes opened wide, big blue orbs full of hope and life. Kholin glanced to the door, and the wookies outside, wondering to himself just how long those beautiful blue eyes would remain full of life.

A single red light blinked steadily within the spacious corner office, clearly displaying the presence of a small security camera. A common thief would assume that single inadequate security measure was all that protected the lavish office building. A good thief would assume there was more to it than that, and be prepared for the worst. Nicoli knew there were a half dozen heat and motion sensors, a pressure sensitive floor paneling system, and a pair of Guardian HSU droids built into the wall alcoves. His contact within the SpyNet had also assured them that for the right price, they could all be disabled at the push of a button. The little communications array strapped across his back was the end result in a long series of negotiations and about a quarter million credits.
The bright red light flashed twice and died out. Nicoli looked at the computer system and saw that the security measures had been deactivated from the corridor. He swore beneath his breath, ducking back into the shadows and looking tentatively into the darkness. In the lighted rectangle of the doorway, Nicoli could make out two forms, roughly intertwined. The emotions of the female hit him like a wall, her intense passion fueled by the pheromones of the second figure. Nicoli couldn’t quite make him out but knew it must be a Faleen, and the only Faleen crazy enough to attempt a job like this was Kholin. The spoiled rich-boy turned thief was known to police as the “Heartbreaker” and had become renowned as one of the finest con-artists in the galaxy. So fine, in fact, that the galaxy at large didn’t know his name or face. Hell, most police forces couldn’t even guess his species correctly. Nicoli had met him on Nal Hutta, where the little brat had run off with a valuable Sith holocron worth millions, leaving Nicoli with nothing but a worthless metal cube.
Nicoli reached out with the Force, probing the thief’s mind. He was drawing nearer to the safe, his mind repeating the same sequence of twelve numbers; the code to the vault. Perched on the narrow ledge, Nicoli wanted to slam his fist against something. Not even he had been able to acquire the codes to the inner vault. The brat was good. He gripped the handle of his saber. Just a few more moments and the amateur would clear the path right to the most desired piece of data in the galaxy.

The blast had caught the small contingency of blue guards flat-footed, blowing the nearest pair back against the wall. The remaining four blue robed Senate guards had immediately took defensive positions near the secretary’s empty desk. Captain Jarik Whyte breathed a sigh of relief as he emerged from his security room and spotted the empty desk. The girl had chosen a good time to take a break.
Dropping to one knee, Jarik aimed his rifle at the enormous humanoid emerging through the debris strewn entrance. He wrapped the wookie’s face with the black circle of his scope and pulled the trigger. The mercenary howled as his face was torn in two, his body sailing in a lazy arc back towards his comrades. He looked to one of the less experienced guardsmen and nodded. They were going to need backup.