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Open Roleplay Eriadu - The Smallest of Steps [[Landry Belway]]

Discussion in 'The Galaxy Roleplay' started by Lancer, Jul 10, 2015.

  1. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    In the best of times, Socorro was infamous for being the breeding ground of all sorts of scum. As an Outer Rim planet, it was well beyond the reach or interest of the Republic's lawkeepers, which allowed crime to run rampant. Smugglers, bounty hunters, spice dealers, pirates--all made their homes here, and even the few honest men on the planet were reduced to paying tribute to one criminal element or another just for protection.

    This, however, was not the best of times.

    Landry was 13 when the news came buzzing over the Holonet: the charismatic Xath'rid, leader of the Sand Knights criminal syndicate, had executed the leaders of the other major organizations and had declared himself Overlord of Socorro. Xath'rid had disturbed the uneasy truce formed between the various criminal elements by waging open war on each of them at once, until they had united against him...but he and his Knights were said to have power beyond normal men, like the Jedi on Coruscant, and they had proved impossible to stop.

    Not long after that, people started disappearing.

    ***

    "You've got quite the haul here, Varani," Captain Bresler said as his subordinates inspected the cargo. "Your Scions of Socorro are about to make a lot of people very happy...and me very rich." The big man chortled, and Lieutenant Varani gave him a thin-lipped smile.

    "You will find everything in order. I promise you that." She gave him a cool stare, completely unfazed by Bresler's imposing figure. Her composure before the big man was reassuring, as was the fact that she almost stood eye-to-eye with the Sunlance leader. Landry never thought of Varani as being a comforting figure--indeed, when he had learned that she would be commanding this mission, he was a little intimidated--but felt like she had control over the situation and that was enough. His heart was still pounding out of his chest, but at least his hands stopped shaking. Mostly.

    "Oh, I believe that." Bresler motioned to some of his men to start collecting the cargo. "You've never been the type to leave anything half-done...that's why I offered you a spot in my organization once upon a time." His eyes twinkled as he fingered the blaster on his hip. "Besides...Barthos knows by now not to cross Sunlance. A shame he couldn't join us today."

    Something was wrong here. Landry began to fidget with his left hand, toying with the small device he held. Everything Bresler said was so innocuous, but Landry could not shake the feeling that his smiles and laughter were a lie. He fought not to react or to look nervously at the Lieutenant. Should he...? Maybe not--maybe he was just being paranoid. He could wait, at least until he was sure.

    "Captain Barthos is otherwise engaged today, Captain Bresler." Varani's tone, as ever, didn't waver. "I have full authority in his stead. Now, shall we get to payment?"

    Bresler chuckled and waved some of his crew forward. "Always right to the point, eh Varani? You would be eager to get to the payment part." Landry's left hand twitched again, involuntarily, and he stole a glance at the rest of the Sunlance crew. They were definitely very well armed...

    "Of course. Are you not?" Varani asked pointedly.

    "Hah! You're right, of course--it is the most important part of any transaction." One of the Sunlance pirates handed Bresler a credit chip, which he passed on to Varani. "The full amount, as agreed." Once Varani inspected the chip and nodded, the other pirate handed Bresler a small bag, and Landry's heart skipped a beat. Could that be...?

    "Now the second part of your payment...this one's interesting." Bresler hefted the bad up to eye level, and Landry experienced another twinge of anxiety. His fingers closed around the device in his hand, resting upon the button. I should push it, he thought, but he couldn't quite bring himself to do it. He knew what would happen once he pushed that button, and what if he was wrong?

    "I presume you have it? It was a part of the deal." Varani held out her hand expectantly, but Bresler held it at arm's length.

    "Now what would Barthos want with one of these? Has he developed a new interest? Or has he been hiding something?" Landry's stomach dropped, and his hands began to tremble again. Is that it? Is that the sign?

    "Captain Bresler--"

    "No, Varani, I'm curious about this one. You must admit that this is an unusual request." He fixed her with a stare, and Landry tried not to panic. "Is it possible? Was the money too good? Have the Scions of Socorro sold out to Overlord Xath'rid at last?"

    Money. Scions. Xath'rid.

    Treachery.


    That was it. He was sure of it now, more than anything. Landry pushed the button in his hand and waited, his body tense.

    Lieutenant Varani did not give the slightest hint of discomfort, not moving an inch even though literal alarm bells were going off in her ear. "We have a buyer, Captain Bresler. That should be all you need to know," she said, her voice not betraying a thing. "The Scions of Socorro do what is necessary. These are dangerous times."

    Once the signal phrase was uttered, everything happened at once. Landry dived out of the way as Varani and the rest of the Scions, almost as one, went for their weapons. Bresler just managed to get out a curse before two bolts from Varani caught him in the chest, and the sounds of blasterfire filled the air.

    Within seconds, it was all over.

    ***

    After what seemed like hours of staring through the darkness, Landry could make out each crack in the ceiling.

    He was tired, but for reasons he couldn't fully identify he could not fall asleep. There had been an odd energy in the house today: his mother and uncle had had a heated, whispered conversation he had pretended not to notice, and then his uncle had left and not been back all day. Mother had spent the entire day searching for distractions, but he had caught her staring at him throughout the day and she had made a point of telling him she loved him whenever she got a chance. Matio seemed oblivious, at least until he noticed how distracted Landry was, but Landry could tell something was about to happen.

    He didn't know what time it was when his door creaked open, but he wasn't surprised to see his uncle Wagner step into the room. Wagner saw him sit up and smiled. "You waiting for me, boy?"

    "Not exactly. What's going on?"

    "I'll explain on the way. Get dressed." Wagner motioned at the luggage bag in his hand. "I've already packed for you."

    As his uncle waited outside, Landry dressed in silence, his mind racing. Ever since his father had gone away, his uncle had been around a lot more often, helping his mother whenever he could...but while he had become more and more agitated as rumors of Xath'rid's leadership circulated, he had never done anything like this. Still, Landry's mother had told him that Wagner had a gift for intuition, and she usually followed his advice, so he must have a reason.

    When Landry left his bedroom, his mother was standing there whispering with Wagner, and she teared up when she saw him. After a fierce embrace, she glanced over at his uncle and said softly, "Are you sure I can't go with you, Wagner?"

    "I wish you could, Lavinia. But it's too dangerous, and you need to be here for Matio," Wagner said gravely. His mother nodded reluctantly and embraced him again, and they held the embrace until Wagner broke in. "We really need to get going," he said, gently but firmly.

    She nodded and pulled away. "You'll be okay. We'll be here when you come back, so come back when you can."

    Landry was still holding back tears as they drove away from the house in Wagner's speederbike, so he didn't say a word. Almost as though to fill the void, Wagner began to talk.

    "I know this is confusing and scary for you, Landry...and it should be. We wouldn't be doing this if we felt we had a choice." Landry didn't say anything; he feared that he wouldn't be able to get anything out even if he wanted to. After a moment, Wagner continued. "Ever since Xath'rid took over, I had a feeling that we would have to do something like this. Do you know much about the Force?" Landry shook his head, but Wagner was already continuing. "The Force is...well, in short form, it's a power in the universe that some people can use. It manifests in several ways: telekinetic abilities, enhanced reflexes, a sort of 'sixth sense' or intuition about the world...you've heard of the Jedi? This is the source of their power, and though I've never been formally trained, I have some ability to use it as well. It's also said to run in families." Landry raised his head in surprise, and Wagner only nodded in confirmation. "Unfortunately, Xath'rid is able to use the Force as well, and he is wary of others who have that potential. He's been sending his Sand Knights from town to town in search of those who are Force-Sensitive and conscripting them into his service."

    For a moment, Landry was so overloaded by all of this information he almost managed to forget everything else. The Force? Him and Uncle Wagner, like the Jedi...or like Xath'rid? Could that really be true? "So..." he managed, "so we're leaving to keep Xath'rid from finding us?"

    "You're leaving, yes." Wagner smiled apologetically at Landry's grimace. "I can't leave your mom and brother here alone--not with your father gone. And with the spaceports closed, I can't get them off-planet safely. But I think that you'll be alright."

    "I'm only 13." The words came out as a whisper, and Landry felt like he was going to start crying again. There was so much more he could have said: he'd never been off-world, he'd never been away from his family for more than a couple of days, he didn't even speak Basic for crying out loud! How could he be alright?

    "Yes. You're only 13, and I wouldn't send you away unless there was no other choice. But you won't be alone. I'm sending you off with a smuggler's group called the Scions of Socorro, run by a man named Captain Barthos--they're a rough crowd, dangerous, but they oppose Xath'rid as much as I do and they're the only ones that I trust that can get people on and off-planet under Xath'rid's nose. You're smart, cautious, and you'll learn from them...and you'll have the Force to guide you. You do what you can to learn--and not from the Jedi. The Jedi will force you to put away your attachments, to forget who you are and where you came from...but I want you to promise something for me: I want you to learn everything you can, to become a powerful Force-user in your own right...and then to return here and take down Xath'rid. Whatever it takes."

    ***

    Landry stared as the Scions loaded the last of the Sunlance pirates into the airlock. He felt numb, exhausted, like he couldn't move. In his time with the Scions, he had seen a couple of firefights, and a lot more firefights, but this was different. This was something he had caused himself, just by pushing the warning button Captain Barthos had given him. How could he have done something like that?

    He jumped as someone put a hand on his shoulder, and he looked up to see Lieutenant Varani. "Captain Barthos is on the line," she said crisply. "He would like to speak with you. Follow me." She spun on her heel and began to walk briskly down the corridor, and Landry almost had to jog to catch up to her.

    With his Devaronian horns and fangs, Captain Barthos would have been an intimidating sight anyway, but the effect was magnified from the big screen in the captain's quarters, with Varani at Landry's back. Landry forced himself to stand up tall, but he felt like everyone in the world could feel him trembling.

    "So," Barthos said, "I hear your special powers came in handy."

    Landry glanced at Varani uncertainly, and she nodded. "Our search of Bresler's files revealed correspondence with Overlord Xath'rid. He planned to capture us and sell us to him."

    Landry gave a sign of relief and almost even managed to smile. So he had been right after all...and surely the firefight couldn't be his fault if Bresler planned to capture them all anyway, right? Had he actually just done the right thing?

    "Good work," Barthos said. "I knew there was a reason we were keeping you around." He gave a laugh, and then glanced over Landry's head. "I believe we have your reward. Lieutenant Varani?" She withdrew the bag they had gotten from Bresler and handed it to Landry, who trembled in anticipation as he looked inside. Finally, after two years with the Scions, learning Basic, some of the tricks of the trade, and even the most rudimentary Force ability from what little information he could find, this was it: a Holocron.

    "You have your trinket now. The Scions will be based on Eriadu for a while, cleaning up the remnants of Sunlance and finding another buyer for the spice, so you'll have some time to learn how to use it...but remember who gave it to you. You may go." Landry nodded his head and made his escape from the room and onto the streets of Eriadu, clutching his prize. He had no illusions about that last comment--Barthos was making sure he knew how much he owed the Scions--but it didn't matter. None of it did. He had the Holocron, and he was finally going to become stronger so that he could return to his family and liberate his world.

    Whatever it took.

    ((Profile for Landry Belway coming soon.))
     
    Darth Decivus and Azarak like this.
  2. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    The Gambit had been on Eriadu for less than a day. It had originally been on Coruscant looking for work when the "incident" with the fat man had interrupted all of that. Ord didn't feel like sticking around for much longer. His business was legitimate, but there were still some illegitimate enterprises that happened from time to time on his ship. He didn't want the authorities poking around where their noses didn't belong. He sighed. Things certainly had taken a turn for the worse.... Though it could have been for the best. He did get a job on Coruscant even if it was just transporting some refugees to the Outer Rim.

    He had some other business to attend to today. One of his associates, Card, was on Eriadu. He said that he had some developing information on the situation on the Outer Rim. Ord wasn't your typical smuggler. He also ran a very small and private military command structure. He could make surgical strikes anywhere in the galaxy he pleased. The fact that his ships all appeared to be cargo ships (modified of course) meant that he could go anywhere he pleased and feel empowered to make a mess of things. It also helped that he had a few disguises that would help move things along.

    Today, Ord was dressed as a Jedi Apprentice. He did not have a lightsaber because he didn't have a use for those things. He'd wind up chopping off his arm if he tried to do it; however, the look did provoke notice and also not. You didn't mess with a Jedi Master or Knight. You certainly didn't want to go after an Apprentice, but an Apprentice usually was off doing the Master's business. In the hierarchy of the Jedi, they were merely errand boys albeit dangerous errand boys. So it suited Ord to walk the streets with his hood up concealing his face as he walked. If actual Jedi were to look or even Sith, they would find that he was missing some items that would designate him as a true Apprentice. They would also sense the lack of a Force Presence. He was as safe as he could be.

    He stopped at a stall and waited. He didn't want to buy anything, but Card was supposed to meet up with him. Hopefully, he would do it quickly.
     
  3. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    The streets of the city were full in the busy part of the day, and Landry found himself growing increasingly impatient as he walked towards the hotel where Barthos had reserved a room. He could feel the presence of the Holocron in his pocket, calling to him with its pulsating energy. Anticipation built with every step, as he knew he was just about to take his first real step toward everything he had been working for the past two years.

    If only he could get out of this infernal foot traffic.

    As small as he was, Landry was generally pretty good at weaving his way through a mess of bodies, but a part of him balked at risking his prize to the clutches of any potential pickpockets. This was not Socorro: the general populace was not nearly as rough or dangerous on Eriadu, but the Holocron was still too valuable to endanger. Sliding around to the edge of the sidewalk, he spotted an open lane and took his opportunity.

    Too late, he realized just exactly why the lane was open. Landry couldn’t quite catch himself before bumping into the hooded man standing alone at a stall, and he took a quick tumble on the ground before leaping to his feet. A Jedi? Here? People typically gave Jedi a wide berth—even those who weren’t involved in anything shady were a little wary of their abilities. Still, they rarely came this far out—Dantooine was in the Outer Rim, but on the completely other side of the galaxy—so this was a curious sight. Which mostly meant that there were a lot of gawkers there to see Landry’s faceplant.

    Landry’s mind was racing and his eyes searched for a quick exit. Uncle Wagner had warned him not to trust the Jedi, that they would never allow him to use his Force abilities to help his home planet. His own research had borne that out—the Jedi were known to seek out all Force-users they could to bolster their own ranks, but they frowned on attachments. Had they somehow known he was here? In a panic, he rather conspicuously attempted to push his way out of the circle, not even muttering an apology to the Jedi he had just bumped into.
     
  4. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    ((So apparently I forgot to watch this post to see a reply happening.))

    Ord was knocked into the stall as the small... boy? knocked into him. He didn't know if this was Card's infernal need for secrecy or not, but he was determined to find out. The boy didn't even mutter an apology. Ord would have a talking to with Card and the boy once he met up with them both.

    Ord wasn't concerned about other reasons a boy might knock into him. He was disguised as the Jedi Apprentice. A normal pickpocket would not dare mess with a Jedi if they valued their life. It was for this reason that Ord thought that Card had sent the boy. It was also this reason why Ord followed the boy quickly.

    "Boy."

    He merely spoke it. He wouldn't be losing track of him. This meeting with Card might be important.
     
  5. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    Landry had managed to make his way out of the circle, but he winced as he did so. Could he have made himself look any more suspicious to the Jedi with his escape? There weren't many criminals dumb enough to tangle with a Jedi, but there was always someone...and the Jedi could easily suspect him of someone who had just robbed someone else and was afraid to get caught. So, though he jumped at the sound of the Jedi's voice behind him, he wasn't especially surprised that the man had followed him. Landry stepped to the side of the street, out of the way of most of the foot traffic, and slowly turned to face the man, his mind racing.

    "What do you need, sir?"

    Respectful--that's probably what he needed to be in this spot. If the Jedi indeed suspected him of criminal activity, he might be able to get away from this--after all, he hadn't actually done anything wrong. The worse possibility was that the Jedi had come here to find him specifically, or if he had not but figured out that Landry was Force-Sensitive anyway. Landry carried no weapons of any sort; usually, his form of defense was his ability to anticipate potential trouble as well as the protection offered him by invoking the name of the Scions of Socorro, but he could hardly use his connections to a criminal gang to escape a Jedi's interest! Not that a blaster would have been any more effective anyway, since Landry wasn't stupid enough to draw on a Jedi, but his options were limited at this point and he had to hope to be able to talk his way out of this mess.
     
  6. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    Ord was glad that the youngster had stopped. He wanted to get down to the business at hand. He wasn't exactly happy that the boy had bumped into him, but he would survive.

    "You have something for me."

    It wasn't a question. If the boy had been sent by Card. The boy would definitely have something for the leader of his fleet. Though, it was curious now that the boy was being polite. Just moments ago, he was being rude and pushed into him instead of tapping him on the shoulder. He would definitely have to have a talk with Card about this boy, and the people he hired. Good help was hard to find these days, but not that hard...

    "You know what I want."

    He extended his hand as if demanding.
     
  7. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    If it had been anything else, Landry likely would have handed it away without hesitation. He might have been intimidated in this spot anyway, and with the man being a Jedi and his connection with the Scions moot, he wouldn't really be able to resist anyway. But this...this was the Holocron. This was what he had been seeking the past two years: a way to get the training to save his homeworld, and it was way too important to give away. He hesitated, and that hesitation gave him a chance to think. Suddenly, a question popped into his head: how would this Jedi know that he had the Holocron? Maybe he didn't. Maybe he was bluffing, trying to get Landry to admit that he stole something without actually knowing what. Sure, maybe the Jedi could have read his mind or something, but he was being very vague...

    "I'm sorry I bumped into you, sir Jedi. But I don't know what you mean." Landry removed his hand from his pocket and folded his arms across his chest. It...was not exactly an especially convincing story, as the hesitation before his answer may not have gone unnoticed and Landry was hardly a smooth customer. But if the Jedi was really determined to know what Landry was up to, he was going to have to read his mind...and if it came to that, he supposed he would have to take it from there.
     
  8. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    "Quit fooling around. You know what you have isn't yours."

    Ord looked glaringly at the boy who would defy him as such. Card must have sent him. Right? But there was... hesitation. Maybe? He didn't know the boy personally, but he knew when there was indecisiveness. Obviously the boy was used to orders and command. He wouldn't have stopped, would he? The fact that the boy didn't want to give up what he had...

    Valuable? Dangerous? Trouble?

    He changed his mind suddenly. It might be opportunistic, but... He changed his mood. He softened his feature and even smiled at the boy.

    "You have passed the first test. Well, done. Now, if you would like to continue... tell me three things about me that you don't know."

    He might as well see where this would go. He had been having strange things happen to him lately. He might as well interrogate the boy without him knowing to gain some insight.
     
  9. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    Does he know? The Jedi certainly seemed to act like he did. But still...he was being very vague, and besides, surely the Jedi couldn't claim that the Holocron wasn't his, right? Did the Jedi own all of the Holocrons in the universe? Landry actually wasn't sure, and certainly Captain Bresler's legitimate claim to owning the Holocron was...questionable. But certainly Landry hadn't stolen it or anything...Bresler's treachery notwithstanding.

    Before he could make up his mind on how to proceed, the Jedi's demeanor changed. Test? What in the world was he talking about? Landry was instantly suspicious. Maybe the Jedi had come for him here after all, and they were testing him...but that didn't quite feel like a Jedi-like test. Still, maybe if he played along, he could find some way out of this. So, after he forced away his somewhat perplexed expression, he answered: "Um, well...your name. Your home planet. And...why you're here." Might as well get straight to the point. If the Jedi had come to recruit him, better to make him say so now so that Landry could try to figure out how to get away.
     
  10. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    If the boy was perplexed, he now had Ord perplexed. The boy was supposed to tell Ord three things about himself; however... He put his hand up to his chin and nodded thoughtfully. He radiated confidence as if he was the boy's superior. Truth be told, he was probably the boy's superior. He was after all a trained military officer (retired), a smuggler, and a person who like information as well as how to get it.

    "Wise questions, indeed, young man. My name is Jord Blakar. As you might be aware, Jedi do not have a "home planet". We try not to form attachments, and I am here for you. In fact, I came in from Coruscant not too long ago."

    He didn't know if Jedi didn't form attachments or not since he hadn't met one, but he had heard that they were aloof and vague. The better to mentally manipulate you he guessed. Hopefully, his bluff would still work. And if not, oh, well... that was the nature of things.

    "I felt you in the Force. You were part of or witness to a disturbance of the Force. I sensed danger but could not make out the type. I believe it has something to do with what you have. Even though, my questions were part of the first test, you do possess something that isn't your own.

    Tell me. How did you come by it?"

    All guesses. He was rather convincing though. At least, he thought he was.
     
  11. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    Laundry' blood ran cold as the Jedi confirmed his worst fears: he was here for him. When the man had asked him to name three things about the Jedi he didn't know, Landry hadn't really expected a straight answer...and now he wished he hadn't gotten one. Could the Jedi take him by force? He wasn't sure--his research had indicated that the Jedi had some sort of code, but what lengths could they take in their recruiting process? Kidnapping seemed extreme, but Jord had come halfway across the galaxy for him...

    "You...you can sense me all the way from Coruscant?" The thought both alarmed and, oddly enough, excited Landry. He was fuzzy on the details of how powerful Force-users could actually be, but he hadn't imagined their senses could be that strong. Maybe someday he himself could be that powerful and then Xath'rid...Xath'rid. Landry's veins ran cold again as he thought of the Force-using tyrant, and he couldn't hold back a shudder. If the Jedi could sense someone halfway across the galaxy who had nothing to do with them, then surely Xath'rid could sense someone a couple of planets away who was actively hoping to overthrow him. Perhaps he knew where Landry was even now...the thought made Landry feel sick to his stomach.

    The train of thought was so disconcerting and frightening that he barely even paid attention to the next thing he said, until it was too late. "It's mine. I got it as payment for helping on a job." Whoops. Now he had admitted to something, even more than just having the Holocron in the first place. Even though the Jedi had clearly not been fooled by his claims, he hadn't seemed to know about the Scions in the first place and Landry had just given up more information than he should have. Captain Barthos wasn't going to be happy if he heard about this.
     
  12. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    Ord nodded and smiled. He leaned in conspiratorially and whispered to the boy.

    "I can do much more than just sense you."

    He coughed, stood up, and continued to smile while talking. Ord was making it up as he went. The look the boy gave him was almost all worth the trouble of things. Ord had already figured out that Card had not sent him. This was just to see what the boy was doing and what the boy was protecting. Apparently, the boy had a reverence for the Jedi. Almost seemed unhealthy to Ord, but what did he know? People got all bent out of shape over religion. The Jedi and Sith have been proving that for millenniums. That certainly wouldn't change until one or the other destroyed each other. Rumor had it that the Sith were gone, but... in history, that was never true.

    He was almost distracted by all of this that he almost didn't catch what the boy had said. Did he hear him correctly? Let's find out...

    "I do not dispute that you have it in your possession. It seems to be important to you, and you must have worked hard for it. Tell me. Do you feel that your job is worthwhile? Are you satisfied with what you do? Or do you seek something else?"

    The boy was good; a bit naive, but good. It was clear that he worked for someone who sought intelligence or some other commodity. The boy was used to order and authority. That was a plus in the organized criminal side of things or government. The reverence for the Force users was a bit troubling. He couldn't quite put his finger on it. Something wasn't adding up in all of this, but it seemed like the boy might know about what was going on in the Outer Rim. He might even know what happened to Card. That made this boy a commodity to be taken care of. Although, it wasn't quite that simple. The boy was sentient and alive. People were not things to be bought and sold. Some might subscribe to that idea, but Ord had morals... for the most part. You either lived by a code or died by the saber.

    It was unfortunate; very unfortunate. Others should take lesson from Ord and possibly this boy. They were the ones who made the galaxy great.
     
  13. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    His comment about the job had not gone unnoticed, and the Jedi was starting to press him on it. Landry was very wary of this line of questioning, since the Scions' main line of work was not strictly legal even if they were in opposition to a tyrant. If the Jedi knew that Landry was involved in him, Landry could get arrested...or maybe even forcefully recruited into the Jedi organization? He still didn't know how that worked, but either way he couldn't think of any good that could come of him admitting his affiliation. Granted, the Jedi could have read his mind and maybe already knew...but there was something going on here. The Jedi was still being very vague about everything, so it was possible that he hadn't been able to glean any specifics about Landry just yet.

    "I seek something else. But the only way I can get it is through the job." Landry was slowly trying to work his way into a strategy for this conversation. Right now he was banking off of telling the truth, strictly speaking, but without actually giving anything away. With his own latent Force-Sensitivity, he always had a tougher time sensing when something was wrong when the subject was telling the truth while obscuring information, so maybe it would be the same for this Jedi. The real truth here was that Landry had no real option in working with the Scions--he owed them for getting him off of Socorro safely, and they knew the names of his family if he ever stepped out of line. Things were far from perfect, but at least he had been able to use this situation to inch closer to his goal. And fortunately, Barthos had thus far seen fit to shield him from most of the rougher elements of the smuggling ring's operations, if not from himself.
     
  14. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    Ord nodded. He wanted this boy. The boy had some room to grow, but didn't they all?

    "What if I could offer you that something else and still provide for you in a job?"

    He gave a brief moment of thought before continuing.

    "Not everything is as it seems. Demons hide in the open. All the Force's angels come to us disguised."

    He paused once more.

    "If you're up to it."

    Ord figured the best course was to be aloof and cryptic. He risked making the boy more uncomfortable, but that was a risk that he had to take. It was possible that he belonged to a criminal organization or government. They certainly would not appreciate him poaching talent. They had all poached talent. That was the nature of the job.
     
  15. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    The Jedi did not understand. Landry could still remember the night a year ago, when Barthos had returned to his quarters in a foul mood after a mission gone awry, alcohol stinking on his breath, his fists feeling as hard as iron. "You'll earn your keep, boy," his voice still rang in Landry's head, "or your family will rue the day you were born." Not even a Jedi would be able to convince Landry to abandon the Scions, at least not while they could hand his family to Xath'rid at any time. If his parents and brother were killed, what would it matter if he eventually became powerful enough to defeat the Socorran overlord? No, unless Jord could do something to change the equation, Landry had no options.

    "You can't offer me that." Landry's voice was almost a whisper. Part of him wished he could, since he imagined his progress would be exponentially better with the Jedi than with the Scions, but his uncle's warnings about the Jedi echoed in his ears. Life with the Jedi might be more comfortable than life with the Scions, but at least the Scions had the same goal as Landry did; swapping to the Jedi would just transfer his debts to another group. And, of course, there was that little matter of not being able to get out of his deal with the Scions in the first place.
     
  16. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    Ord sighed. It was time to give up this ruse. He would have to tell the boy the truth. If the boy needed to switch whatever side he was on, he could always call on Ord. His demeanor changed again and he straightened. He removed the hood from his robe so the boy could see his face more clearly. There was no point in going forward with the deception. He had learned all that he was going to learn.

    "Truth is boy. I am no Jedi. I am no Force sensitive; however, I am a smuggler and businessman by trade. I may have made an enemy today of you, but it was well worth the chance to steal you. You have a gift. That being said, I would have offered you a mate position on one of my ships."

    He thought a moment.

    "That offer is always on the table if you decide to take it."
     
  17. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    Landry felt foolish. Jord had claimed to be a Jedi without demonstrating anything, but he had fallen for it hook, line, and sinker, not even bothering to try to read him through the Force. Granted, Jord had played it up well, even managing to read Landry enough to sell him on having sensed his thoughts, and he looked the part as well. Plus, it wasn’t as though Landry had ever seen a Jedi before. Still, he had been so flustered that he hadn’t even thought things through, and he had embarrassingly been fooled completely.

    “I…I can’t.” Hesitation, definitely enough for Jord to notice. Landry’s ambivalence about the Scions bled through his voice, and while he would never be able to admit that he wasn’t thrilled with his position, Jord would probably be able to tell. Truth be told, Landry was a little surprised at the offer, since he felt he hadn’t exactly acquitted himself well, what with the being completely owned by the deception and all. Maybe Jord was looking for a Force-Sensitive ally much like Barthos had; after all, hadn’t the mission earlier today proved how useful that could be?
     
  18. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    Ord considered carefully the options. The boy had refused his offer, and that was enough to walk away. What stopped him from doing this was the hesitation in the response. It shown like a bright beacon in the distance. There might still be enough to salvage here after all.

    "Why not?"

    He wanted to see where this went.
     
  19. Lancer

    Lancer Member

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    This was going a bit too far. Landry hadn’t nipped this conversation in the bud, and now he was on the verge of giving away too much information. He had to put an end to this now, before Jord managed to pry anything else out of him. As flattering as the man’s offer had been, Landry was still a little flustered from the whole situation and he was worried about getting himself into more trouble.

    “Some of us don’t always have real options.” He meant it to come out icy, biting, but instead the words echoed pitifully in his ears. Maybe it sounded better to others than it did to him, but he felt like he was just being whiny and petulant. If Jord had an inexplicably high opinion of Landry before, more moments like that should hurt his assessment, and so instead of meeting Jord’s eyes and standing his ground, Landry turned and began to walk away slowly. Truth be told, he wasn’t really sure why he had stayed even that long—the threat of arrest or recruitment from a Jedi had held him there against his will, but he had lingered even past Jord’s confession. That had to have been a mistake, and it was time to rectify that now.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2015
  20. Helius

    Helius New Member

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    Ord smiled as the boy walked away slowly. He had spirit. Ord would give him that. It wasn't every day that you were tricked, interrogated, and offered a job on the spot. Ord guessed that he had an unconventional way of doing things, and this was just how he did things. If you could get past the trials of Ord, then you might be worthy after all of a position.

    "If you change your mind, I will be at the Rumor. I'll be here for a few days. Ask for the Patron, he'll know how to get a hold of me."

    Ord began whistling as he moved away from the boy in the opposite direction. He flipped his hood back up. He still hadn't found Card, but that was the next objective. He considered his next move and decided that he would ask the Patron.
     

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