I was thinking "Blade" for Gev's gang nickname- you know- just for that one person. For the gang as a whole, I have no clue. The gang is on Coruescant. Ailyn travels there to begin her quest.
More fanfic... perhaps the second most-crucial moment in the story...
I'll get back to Boba's crisis in the next chapter or so.
When Ailyn woke the next day, her mother still wasnÃ¢Â€Â™t home. Ailyn stretched in bed; her knuckles met the wall, and her feet grazed the footboard. ItÃ¢Â€Â™s my birthday. IÃ¢Â€Â™m sixteen. She thought. Somehow, her first day being sixteen felt exactly like the day before. Ailyn dressed and headed to the shop once again, picking up a pastry for breakfast along the way.
Her day at the shop passed uneventfully. Ailyn headed out at the same time. This time, she took the long way home that lead on the outskirts of town. The buildings spread out, revealing a bleak landscape set under the unforgiving moons.
The sun set in the purple sky above her. A precious few starships zoomed overhead- not many visitors came to Concord Dawn- as warm gusts of wind stirred AilynÃ¢Â€Â™s hair and fanned out her cloak.
Ailyn felt a faint prick of worry about her mother. She had been thinking about Sintas that day more than she cared to admit. Though Sintas was away more than she was home, she usually stuck to her schedule. It was unlike her to be late.
Ailyn turned back towards town, taking the road that would lead her to the back of the apartment complex. Up ahead, she caught sight of the landlord. He stopped her by yanking on her cloak, an action that annoyed her at the best of times.
Ã¢Â€ÂœYou motherÃ¢Â€Â™s late on the rent,Ã¢Â€Â he snarled in his hoarse, disgusting voice. Ã¢Â€ÂœShe needs to pay in three days or I must evict the two of you.Ã¢Â€Â
Ailyn nodded curtly and continued on her way. The mention of money suddenly made her think that she might have left her wallet in the shop. She stepped into an alley and dropped her backpack to the ground to check inside.
Her wallet was in the bottom, hidden under old school books and a few lengths of wire that she planned to use for repairing her motherÃ¢Â€Â™s equipment. Just as Ailyn was about to shoulder the pack again, Rejan the pawn shop owner and a creepy-looking character Ailyn didnÃ¢Â€Â™t recognize strode past the mouth of the alley. Ailyn caught one phrase from Rejan that piqued her curiosity:
Ã¢Â€ÂœWhat amount of credits will her ship be worth, do you think?Ã¢Â€Â
The creep cackled. Ã¢Â€ÂœWho knows? It runs, yes, but it isnÃ¢Â€Â™t that fast or pretty.Ã¢Â€Â
Ailyn raised one eyebrow and slowly started to follow after them. She dogged their steps a few meters behind, so that it looked as if she were simply idling in the street.
Rejan continued, unaware of the eavesdropper. Ã¢Â€ÂœYes. Sort of a pity that she left the girl behind. I wonder if KanÃ¢Â€Â™ek will be able to collect the rent.Ã¢Â€Â
Ailyn sucked in her breath. No, they couldnÃ¢Â€Â™t be talking about her mother, could they?
The other creature cackled again. Ã¢Â€ÂœAh, yes. What a pity. The bounty hunter gets killed taking a bounty, and her daughter must continue. Really, IÃ¢Â€Â™d just as soon see that Ailyn brat out of this town. She does nothing but make trouble.Ã¢Â€Â He laughed once more.
Ailyn stopped dead in her tracks. This couldnÃ¢Â€Â™t be true. It had to be some sick, horrible joke.
She turned back down the street and ran all the way to the starship port. Please, let it be a joke, she thought with each pounding footstep.
She skidded to a halt at the main counter, nearly crashing into it.
Ã¢Â€ÂœCan I help you?Ã¢Â€Â The resident droid inquired in its mechanical voice.
Ã¢Â€ÂœDid my motherÃ¢Â€Â™s ship come in?Ã¢Â€Â Ailyn panted.
Ã¢Â€ÂœWhich ship? And who is it registered to?Ã¢Â€Â
Ailyn spared the droid all the details of her motherÃ¢Â€Â™s ship. Ã¢Â€ÂœSintas Vel. ItÃ¢Â€Â™s registered to Sintas Vel.Ã¢Â€Â
The droid went off to check the docks. It returned a moment later to check the intergalactic databases. Ailyn watched its every move. Why is this taking so long? SheÃ¢Â€Â™s here or sheÃ¢Â€Â™s somewhere nearby. This is ridiculous.
Ã¢Â€ÂœAh, here we are.Ã¢Â€Â The droid said. Ã¢Â€ÂœThe ship registered to Sintas Vel is under lockdown for pending seizure on Naboo. It seems that it was left at a port and the owner has not returned.Ã¢Â€Â
What?? Ailyn straightened, despite her rampaging thoughts. Ã¢Â€ÂœThank you,Ã¢Â€Â she said, and walked back out of the port. It canÃ¢Â€Â™t be.
By the next day, reality began to sink in. Sintas was never this late. Something must have happened. Even if Sintas was injured, she would have tried to contact Ailyn by now.
On the way to work, Ailyn noticed people giving her sympathetic looks. They must know, she thought. News traveled fast in a small town.
Ailyn went back to the shop again and somehow managed to make it through an entire day of work. She made a small grocery run before going back to the apartment. Some instinct made her buy non-perishable nutrition bars.
She returned once more to the empty apartment, then walked out on the small balcony.
ItÃ¢Â€Â™s all her fault. She could have found a different job than bounty hunting. Ailyn hunched over the railing. Despite her best attempt at a poker face, tears began to flow.
No, waitÃ¢Â€Â¦ itÃ¢Â€Â™s all HIS fault. Yes, my father could have actually showed up once and a while. If he sent us money, maybe we wouldnÃ¢Â€Â™t be struggling all the time.
Ailyn sobbed once, then she was loudly weeping over the railing, tears falling to the street far below. Her father probably didnÃ¢Â€Â™t have the slightest inkling on what happened. Where was he, anyway? Her only memory of him was when she was about three years old.
IsnÃ¢Â€Â™t a father supposed to provide for his family? ItÃ¢Â€Â™s not fair! He should have done something!!
On second thought, to hell with the money. He should have at least seen me once. I wanted to see him. A long time ago, that is. I want to know I didnÃ¢Â€Â™t just come out of thin air. Why? Whywhywhywhywhy???
She looked up at the thousands of stars and planets in the azure sky overhead. Her father was probably out there somewhere, with a steady supply of money, his own ships, and a crowd of admirers.
Ã¢Â€ÂœDamn you!!!Ã¢Â€Â she screamed. "Daaaaaaaaamn you!"
Ailyn pounded the railing with her fist. Maybe I should just jump. It would take care of everything. My life is going to be pretty miserable from here on out.
Ailyn cried for almost an hour. All her frustrations about her broken family surfaced in a constant tide of tears. She didnÃ¢Â€Â™t remember going back into the house and to her bedroom.
Ailyn awoke the next morning fully clothed and laying on her stomach on top of her bedcovers, with both fists jammed into her pillow. She felt like hell.
Laying here feeling sorry for myself doesnÃ¢Â€Â™t get anything done.
Ailyn began to do battle with her own thoughts.
What will I do? What can I do?
YouÃ¢Â€Â™ll get off this desolate planet and make a living for yourself. ThatÃ¢Â€Â™s what youÃ¢Â€Â™ll do.
Well, you can start by leaving this apartment! The landlord ainÃ¢Â€Â™t gonna miss ya!
Ailyn sat up and rubbed her puffy eyes.
Mom set the bank account to allow me to access it with my retinal code. ButÃ¢Â€Â¦ I donÃ¢Â€Â™t know how much is in there.
Mass transport is the cheapest. I donÃ¢Â€Â™t know if I even have enough money for that.
Ailyn methodically picked up her backpack and started packing. It was big enough to hold a few daysÃ¢Â€Â™ suppliesÃ¢Â€Â¦ enough until she figured out where she was going. She put in a change of clothes, a full canteen and hydration filter unit, and the nutrition bars sheÃ¢Â€Â™d purchased the day before.
She navigated the combination lock on the weapons closet and pulled out a small ray pistol. It was actually the only gun left at the house that worked, and it was small enough to tuck in the folds of her clothing. As an afterthought, she pulled out a hide bantha whip that was some sort of souvenir from Tatooine. The whip stretched almost 4 meters, and could be used for rappelling and defensive tactics.
She would the long whip into coils and tucked it in her belt. A small microchip on her necklace with the key ring held all her personal information and would allow her to access the bank accounts.
Ailyn took one last look around the apartment. She left. She slammed the door closed.
Instead of taking the stairs to ground level, she went used a small ladder that ran up the side of the building to take her to the roof. There, she removed the apartment keys from her neck cord, and with a shout of both victory and frustration, threw them as hard as she could out over the city.
Last edited by SD_Chick (Wednesday, September 20, 2006 5:57 pm)