Sorry that I'm double posting, but here is the first chapter of Hunter's Shadow:
As Boba blasted through hyperspace, he thought about the future. What would it hold? He suspected it would be dark. Violent and bloody. That was his fatherÃ¢Â€Â™s life. That was his. He was confused. He pushed it from his mind. He was lonely. He pushed it further. He could not be hindered by emotion. Everything had to be excised except for that which he had learned from his father; and that which he had learned on Mandalore, from the few remaining warriors. The bleak world on which the greatest fighters in the history of the galaxy resided had been reduced to almost nothing. The Mandalorians had never had such an empire as the one that existed almost 4,000 years ago. And yet, they lived on. They had been dispersed across the galaxy over the millennia; each had gone their separate way after the defeat at the hands of the Jedi. Most of them had decided to be mercenaries and bounty hunters. They slowly died off, one by one. Not easily, though. MandoÃ¢Â€Â™a were hard to kill. But some remained and carried on the tradition of Mandalorian supercommandos. His father had been one, and served under Jaster Mereel, the man whose armor Boba wore. So Boba had gone to that place, and trained. For three years, he trained and battled the fierce wild animals on Mandalore. He had learned martial arts, marksmanship, and courage. These things Jango had taught him, but here they were tempered, reinforced, and perfected. He hoped that someday the Mandalorians would reunite under one leader. Maybe that would be him. But now, in the moment, he had more urgent things to do.
Fett prepared to exit hyperspace. He made the calculations and the stars snapped back into place and a jolt that made his ship shudder. The closer he flew to Coruscant, the more he could see the crowded skylanes, from a distance looking like millions of small insects running in the dirt. The Slave 1 did not fit in with the usual airspeeder or transport zooming through the towers of the galactic capital, but it did not draw much attention anyway. This was a world inhabited by dozens, maybe hundreds of species; the unusual was to be expected.
Boba set the Slave 1 down in a run-down sector of the city, one of the thousands of locations on the planet scheduled for razing, so he could remain unnoticed. Not that these places were empty, though. There were almost always criminals and lowlifes that thrived in these derelict areas. It was just that these were not the type of people who would care. The Slave 1 dropped down to a void underground level through a large hole caused by some unknown force. Boba Fett blasted up to the surface with a quick burst from his rocket pack. It was near sundown in this part of the planet. Boba slinked through the ruins, shadow moving among shadow. The once grand buildings were covered in the tendrils of plants that had climbed to the tops of the towers. Some structures were burned out, others locked up. There were always other ways of getting in, of course. These places were left to rot until eventual destruction, sometimes because business was bad, places closed down, traffic ceased, and regular maintenance just could not continue, or sometimes areas were quarantined because of the outbreak of a disease, and any who could leave left. But, the Coruscant government didnÃ¢Â€Â™t always get around to it, and these decrepit areas could stand for decades, or longer.
What Fett was looking for was a clue to where Mace Windu had gone. He hoped not only to find some information, but pick up a bounty as well. There was a certain gang boss who haunted this section of Coruscant that would have bounties quite often. He didnÃ¢Â€Â™t always pay directly; in fact he almost always was working for some other larger crime lords. In some cases the chain of command led all the way up to Jabba the Hutt, or Black Sun.
Boba Fett walked down a dark alley with a couple of shady looking Rodians eyeing him as he passed. He didnÃ¢Â€Â™t return their glances, but he was wary of them. Not that they would pose a significant threat, but he didnÃ¢Â€Â™t want to get shot in the back. He never knew how many enemies he had. Fett walked through a sealed doorway after a short conference with a droid. He waited for his part time employer slash contact to greet him in the dim entryway. The sun was almost gone now. Ã¢Â€ÂœJaster, my good man, how are you!Ã¢Â€Â said Krast.
Ã¢Â€ÂœI have a bounty to collect on.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœSo heÃ¢Â€Â™s dead now, the TwiÃ¢Â€Â™lek from the Banking Federation?Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœYes. If you wish, you may come to my ship, his body is there.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœNo, I trust you. I have worked with you long enough to know. I will hear of his death. And if I donÃ¢Â€Â™t, you will pay the price.Ã¢Â€Â Krast was very mild mannered for a Trandoshan. Boba heard it was the result of some poison gas he had inhaled during his run as a mercenary in the Clone Wars. He didnÃ¢Â€Â™t care. Ã¢Â€ÂœHereÃ¢Â€Â™s your payment. Go relax some, have a night out on the town.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœI have business to attend to. IÃ¢Â€Â™m looking for a Jedi.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœHey, keep your voice down; you never know whoÃ¢Â€Â™s working for the Empire, especially on the capital world. Besides, even if you did find one, whatÃ¢Â€Â™re you gonna do with him? TheyÃ¢Â€Â™re all dead anyway.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœNo. Not all of them. I heard of a master who survived, went into hiding, and came back through here recently. Mace Windu.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœThat guy? He was strong; I mean he really mopped up those droids back in the war. Ã¢Â€Â˜Course I never liked him, I was a merc, and the Seps were hiring. Anyway, he got killed by the Emperor and Vader themselves. Nobody messes with them. HeÃ¢Â€Â™s still dead, Ã¢Â€Â˜far as I know.Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœKeep your eye open for him, got it?Ã¢Â€Â
Ã¢Â€ÂœSure. Whatever. Just go do whatever it is you do on the weekend.Ã¢Â€Â
Fett smiled under his helmet. He knew what he did on the weekend. Same as always. Kill, collect, and search, over and over. He snuck out the alley and ran back to the Slave 1 through the dark. Not out of fear, but for conditioning. Why walk when you can run, he thought. Boba needed to stay in top shape in his line of work.
Copyright- Merciless Mandalore 2008- use with permission
"Some soldiers say that to reach maximum combat efficiency, they need to be in the zone. Sir; I live in the zone." - RC 1207 'Sev' to RC 1138 'Boss'