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"Interlude"

Between Vader's instructions and the capture of Han Solo, Boba Fett returns to his ship.

  • Story by Jon Keim
  • Estimated reading time: 3 minutes (659 words)
  • Updated January 26, 2008

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"You are free to use any methods necessary, but I want them alive." He turned and pointed to Fett. "No disintegrations!"

"As you wish," the bounty hunter replied.

Boba Fett's career had not been without controversy. Many bounty hunters in the various guilds sometimes objected to Fett's use of Mandalorian armor. They argued that it gave him an unfair advantage over the other bounty hunters because he was practically impervious to standard attack weapons. Any observer could see, as did Fett, that this was not a matter of professional objection, but of jealousy.

In any case, the other hunters would never say anything directly to Fett. Doing so could have two consequences. The first, and most likely, was that Fett would stare blankly at any hunter stupid enough to confront him. This was probably the more frightening of the two prospects. The second was less likely, but had more permanent consequences. If the feckless bounty hunter confronted Fett in a lonely spot, free-market economics ruled out the survival of the stupid one.

Fett walked out of the Executor's bridge and was immediately accompanied by two stormtroopers. Not that Boba Fett actually needed protection, but it made Captain Needa more comfortable about the safety of his ship.

Fett used this time to analyze his weapons systems to save time later. All in working order.

The Slave I was linked to Boba Fett's helmet so he could monitor its status or call it to his aid. Fett analyzed the Slave I's diagnostics, and waited for all internal tests to be finished. He was suddenly struck by a new thought.

Boba Fett sent an encrypted message to one of the droids on board the Slave I. He hoped this tactic would work, especially since he had to open up Slave I to break into the Super Star Destroyer's computer system. Patiently, he waited until the data scrolled up his tac display. Captain Needa had just recently found, then lost track of, the Millennium Falcon. As the Falcon traveled head-on toward the Star Destroyer Avenger, the sensors registered the proximity of the freighter. Then, just as Solo streaked past the bridge, the sensors lost them.

Obvious, Fett thought. Solo, although sometimes cunning, had not expected bounty hunters to intervene. Even the lowest guild pageboy can figure out that trick. Only Imperial officers are so stupid. Solo, now attached to the Avenger's bridge, hoped to detach when the fleet jumped to hyperspace, floating off with the rest of the garbage.

Fitting for Solo, Fett thought.

As he reached the last few meters before the entrance to the docking bay, Fett's tac display registered a message from the Slave I. Fett calmly reached for his blaster rifle, in case something unexpected were to happen. He wanted to be ready in case of an unfortunate confrontation. The stormtroopers noticed, and readied their weapons in case Fett tried something. After all, you never know with these bounty hunter scum.

Rounding the bend in the corridor, Boba Fett was not surprised to see the group of Imperial technicians gathered around the Slave I. Breaking into a run, Fett flung a concussion grenade into the docking bay, then took cover as tools, spare parts, and technicians radiated away from the Slave I in a large circle.

One of the stormtroopers yelled to Fett, "Stop where you are!" in the typical stormtrooper's anonymous voice. Neither trooper had any intention of taking him alive after this, though, and they raised their rifles. It did them no good. Fett dispensed with all formalities and eliminated his escort.

Sensing safety, Fett lowered his blaster and strode to the Slave I, whose previous inspectors would no longer inspect anything other than the walls of the docking bay. As for his droid he killed, the credits from this bounty would more than cover it.

Once inside, Fett sent a personal message to Lord Vader, lit the Slave I's engines, and screamed out of what remained of Docking Bay 53.

The Imperials are just as stupid as the Rebels, Fett thought.

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