Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Sean Brandt, Kit Gwynne, and Erin Highberg.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:1:24) in the Essesia system: Interrogator.
Sergeant Batua, Alexis Lyra, Rais Treistar, and Colonel Mark Veller.

Rais Triestar stood by in the training facility aboard the Interrogator, dressed down in a simple pair of loose, maroon colored breeches. For a long time he had made it a rule never to be outside of his armor in mixed company, particularly of the Imperial variety, but then again he'd never been expected to make an Imperial vessel a semi-permanent home either. Considering the unusual situation, Rais had decided he might as well make an exception. This whole testing routine seemed like a silly way to kill time between missions, but there had been a strict mandate that if you intended to stay on this team, you would be subjected to evaluation by one of the ship's training officers. For less credits or a shorter contract, Rais would have gladly told them to take their evaluation and shove it where the stars can't see, but the pay was enough to garner some cooperation from the Mandalorian. For now he stood by, a bit early to the whole affair. The officer would no doubt be showing up soon, as would the other hunter who was supposed to be taking part in this today as well. While he waited, Rais took to whistling an old, jaunty tune from the countrysides of Concord Dawn, his homeworld.

Those bright eyes rolled as thick soled boots hit that metallic floor. Alexis Lyra, the younger of the bunch of ragtag for hire killers with a motive for money and sport, thought it was rather ridiculous she took the job in the first place. Lump in her throat grew as she swallowed hard and ran her fingers through that short black hair. Nostrils flared as she glanced from side to side, seeing her other 'comrades' as more competition than anything else. Black looser fitting pants hugged her long legs, hem tucked into the top of her boots. Small belt with a silver buckle held them up. Alexis adorned a light grey tank, that hugged her toned waist and stomach maybe a little more than it should have.

She took in a long slow breath as she stepped next to Rais, who she couldn't really recall who he was at that exact moment because she probably had drank herself to sleep. Corellian Ale usually had that effect on her. Paler defined arms crossed over her chest as she kept quiet. She didn't look like much, but Alexis could definitely hold her own against a much larger stronger competitor...or even mark. She had her speed to rely on.

But, what was she doing here exactly? Being evaluated? Training? The idea of not being on her ship, with an easy getaway, made her completely uneasy. At the moment she was trying to collect her thoughts. It didn't help that she even smelled of the ale. Another glance to her right and left, she said nothing.

Standing in the training room area were two figures. The first was on the short side, about 1.7 meters or so with a crew cut that left his hair color up to the imagination. He was stocky and had a cigarra in his mouth, though it was not lit. He was outfitted in a standard duty uniform with insignia that marked him as a sergeant. As people came into the training area, his eyes would gaze over them, judge and dismiss them.

The other was a taller man, about 1.8 meters and while muscular, was more trim and athletic. His ice blue eyes noted each as they came in, nodding to them as they entered. His uniform was the usual for an officer with rank insignia that marked him as a High Colonel. His black wavy hair was cut short, but there was one strand that refused to stay brushed back that fell forward. Once folks were assembled, he gave everyone a short bow, "Greetings. I am High Colonel Veller. This is Sergeant Batua," he motioned to the stocky man beside him. "Together, we will assess your skills. It is my understanding that such assessments and training are unusual, however, with the tasks you have been hired for, there are specific skill sets we are looking for in order to match you to the correct task. Additionally, some of these tasks may require specialized training to ensure the highest probability of success. Hence this assessment."

He paused for a moment, "I am also given to understand that your usual ... contract is for solo work. This is not the case here. You will be required to work with others. You will also be given training on working within a group. A skill you may be severely lacking in. Do either of you foresee a problem working with others?" He stopped and waited for their answers.

The woman who walked in was a new face to Rais, at least in any real sort of way. He'd caught sight of her once or twice when she'd arrived but not since, and this was his first close up look at her. There was no expectation for her to know who he was at all, considering that he was almost never in communal spaces outside of his armor.
She seemed reasonably fit and attractive enough, but it was the smell of stale alcohol that got Rais's attention more than anything else. While it might have drawn out repulsion in others, Rais grinned. "Celebrating something last night, dear? Or do you celebrate something every night?" A thinly veiled way of rudely asking about her drinking, something that he wasn't going to be getting away with for very long as the two Imperials decided to get things underway. Rais was quite tall, almost challenging the High Colonel's height, but slender in build. It made the Sergeant seem absolutely diminutive, but the Mandalorian knew better than to assume that meant the man was a pushover. His attention soon went back to Veller, though, to offer up his answer, seeming quite nonchalant about the whole affair. "Not so long as these others are capable."

If looks could kill, that one glance from those two rather 'impressive' Imperial officials to Rais would have left him for dead. Tip of her tongue ran over those pearly whites before she opened her mouth. Click of her tongue as those slender shoulders moved up in a rather nonchalant shrug. "Really none of your business, pal." Emphasis on the word pal as she did not take to the term dear. There wasn't anything dear about her. She killed people, mostly men, sometimes aliens, before she'd get the information she'd need out of them. Best way to enjoy bloodshed was with ale.

Her posture was still rather good, despite now shifting her weight over to her left leg. "Whatever pays the bills," she said in a rather sarcastic tone to the two Imperial men. It was clear that this woman used more than that small hold-out blaster to get what she needed, or to get close. Most of the time she enjoyed the cat and mouse game. Baiting the hook. Males didn't think with the head on top of their shoulders when it really came down too it. She cleared her throat as she motioned with her right hand to the two stiffs, as if giving them permission to continue. This was going to be a long day.

Batua grinned slightly around his cigarra, "Well, at least the Mando'Brat isn't with us this time around. Alright, ladies," he said in his most Drill Sergeant voice, "let's start with the basics, shall we? Standard marksmanship. We're using training blasters, but they are as close to your own weapons as the boys in the shop can make them." Batua stepped over to one of the walls and hit the button beside a flat panel. It moved aside to reveal a large amount of weaponry designed to imitate the real thing without being quite as deadly.

"If you folks will pick your weapons, we'll begin. The High Colonel will be keep score," he said, moving off to the side where the simulation controls were. Once everyone was armed, he fired up the simulator.

The first round was the usual targets at a certain range with the standard targets on them. Rather boring stuff. The next round things got interesting. Targets started moving a bit, taking cover. It was the third round that really required the skills.

The four walls of the training area disappeared into an abandoned warehouse. Over the loudspeaker came Batua's voice, "You got four nasties in there wanting your blood. Get them before they get you."

The warehouse had a front office area but the back was all storage racks, boxes, stacks of boxes, piles of boxes, ruined boxes and even more boxes. Plenty of opportunities for ambush, plenty of ways to get to higher ground. Batua ran the simulation as the two bounty hunters went through it, nodding to himself each time someone went down.

From his observation post, Veller watched, noting how well the two of them worked together and how they didn't. It was obvious both of these bounty hunters had some skills, but there was definitely some room for improvement in his mind.

Rais chuckled lightly at Alexis's retort, as well as what she chose to say to the question posed by the High Colonel. Really, that was what it boiled down to for almost all of them. Whatever got them paid in the end. There was no denying he felt the exact same way.

When the weapons were put on display for them to make their choices, Rais went over to the rack, giving the options a genuine inspection. His first inclination was to go for the familiar pistols, but without his armor, his usual methods just wouldn't work as well. Truth be told this whole affair was quickly reminding him of childhood training. It was expected for any real Mandalorian to be familiar with a whole array of weapons, to know them all intimately before choosing what they would wield as their personal preference. Without his usual gear, things changed drastically.

A small blaster carbine was chosen, along with a dummy vibroblade. The blade itself didn't see any use for the first two rounds, but the carbine served him well. Rais wasn't the best shot in the galaxy, but he wouldn't fall short of the expectations one might have for his kind. The first round was a glowing success. The second was met with a few missed shots; qualifying, but not exactly a marskman. The third round, once the warehouse appeared and the instructions were given, solidified the blade as a good choice in the end. It would have been easy to simply charge in, and Rais felt confident in his abilities, but then this wasn't likely just some run of the mill trial. So, balancing the carbine in his hands, he looked to Alexis, a hint of a smirk playing on his lips.

"So, what's the plan?" He actually didn't assume she would have one, but hey, might as well give her a chance.

Alexis couldn't help but give a snort to the shorter Imperial's retort about El-Nay. Her so called, friend. A clear of her throat as she still stayed silent. A few steps to the weapons on display for the lot of them. A quick clear of her throat as she picked up a small dummy vibro-blade, about six inches long. A quick grab of the smaller hold-out blaster as she didn't take much time in her decision. She walked back to where she was, glancing up at Rais as she examined the blaster and got a quick look at the weapon to get familiar with it. Seeing the stun setting, kill setting, getting a feel for it in her right hand.

Alexis was rather happy with decision. She held it out in front of her and then to her side. Left hand held the dummy vibro-blade and stuck it in her left boot as she crouched down. A moment later and she'd begin the target practice. The first round proved to be rather simple. Maybe that's because, despite the hangover, it helped her tune everything else out and focus on the targets ahead. Arm would dart around as she'd shoot with ease, not missing a beat. Round one, complete.

The woman would give an exhale, another deep breath was taken, held, and her hand moved faster. A step closer as she'd squint her left eye ever so slightly. Maybe drinking heavily the night before wasn't the best idea. She missed one target in the second round. Lips pursed as she'd look back to Rais.

"Eyes in the front, eyes in the rear. I'll take the rear. A meter of distance between us." That was as good a plan as any. Plus, it was almost always a sign of trust even offering to watch someone else's back. It was clear she'd have no problem working with someone else, especially if it meant getting a cut of credits. She lived by the credit and would die by it. Canter of her head as she cleared her throat. "Unless you have a better plan?" There wasn't any better way to go into a situation blind. And closer proximity to someone else meant that you'd be able to see something the other one wouldn't.

The fact Alexis volunteered to cover the rear wasn't lost on Rais. A brave move, but then again, it also implied that he was going to trust her enough to cover him. He wasn't the sort to really question motives so deeply, though, and so he gave a nod. "Sounds good to me." Rais flashed a smile that was all confidence and started his approach, dashing forward to reach the outer wall of the warehouse. Rather than just go diving into the front entrance he started to move around the building, ducking windows as they went along, getting an idea for what options they might have for getting inside. In full armor a forward approach was possible, but in this particular situation, seemed a foolish risk to take unless they had no other options.

As luck would have it there was a rear entrance, with an old keypad lock equipped. A quick smash from the butt of his carbine and the door controls glitched, letting it slide open. Peering inside, Rais was presented with a wall of boxes, a narrow path laid out between the rack and the door. With a motion for Alexis to follow he slipped inside, moving along the wall of boxes to the end of the rack. A glance around the corner and two of the thugs were spotted. They didn't seem alerted yet, so he ducked back around, motioning to Alexis to indicate what he could see. After darting his eyes around for a moment, he pointed up...and rose some from his crouch to show just what he was trying to indicate. Standing in a slight bend, he could see between the lower stack of boxes and the next level of the shelves. A much better vantage point.

With zero hesitation, Alexis followed Rais. She was a woman of few words, so when she did speak, she had to make it count. Eyes squinted slightly as she shook off a bit of that headache that a hangover would bring. Not every bounty hunter made great decisions. But, Alexis tended to be a bit of a lush and self destructive, along with self sabotaging. She'd duck here and there, legs moving quickly from under her. She kept an eye out where she could, but let him lead until they were inside. Alexis was happy with the fact that the male chose to cautious route instead of going in guns a blazing. That was someone with an ego or had something to prove. Said a lot about Rais with that move.

After that metal door slid open, she'd move quickly. The larger soles of her boots made her footsteps seem non existent as she couldn't be heard. Those bright eyes adjusting to the dim light as she held her gun to her side. After he pointed the second time she'd trust him to let her know the number he'd seen. She'd wiggle her fingers on her left hands, as if to signal how many he could actually see. Eyes shaded over as she took in a deep breath. Trying to smell her surroundings as well. Nothing out of the ordinary as for a moment she forgot she was in a simulator. Eyes opened as she'd turn her back to him to look behind them, making sure they weren't seen.

Two of four. Half the targets they were after and they had the drop on them, which would hopefully prove to be good enough. Rais, for his part, was barefoot and bare chested; truth be told he had assumed this was going to be little more than glorified sparring. The fact they had been thrown into this full simulation was way beyond anything he had expected. At least it kept his movements quiet, though.

He took a moment to consider the situation, deciding just how to best go about this. It was a tricky situation and, more than anything, Rais was determined to maintain and defend his professional record. The man was a bounty hunter by trade, after all, and clearing a little room with another hunter at his side shouldn't be a problem. Eventually, plucking the vibroblade free, he landed on a solution. Rising up, but staying concealed behind the rack of boxes, Rais threw the vibroblade across the room, aiming for the top of a far shelf. It thunked into a box and, by force of momentum, sent the box tumbling to the ground with a resounding thud. The two thugs, as expected, moved to see just what the noise was. It gave him a perfect shot on the two, but as he fired the blaster rifle, only one was struck. His shots went wide on the second and the man dove, readily dodging the bolts.

Although Alexis kept her back to Rais, she looked at him from over her shoulder. She'd get a glance here and there mostly to check what he was doing. After a few moments, she'd see him chuck the vibro-blade to make a distraction. She'd turn to the tangent over the boxes and saw he only hit one. Her left hand moved to reach out to him, pushing him back as she'd shoot the second target he'd miss. But her right hand immediately moved right over his head "Two more. Behind me." How she was able to see them was beyond her but she could hear the footsteps from them as she'd dive left, hitting a few of the boxes, giving Rais a clear shot at the two, as they would be focused their fire on her. Hopefully he wasn't stupid, and would move to shoot them, this time not missing.

Rais cursed under his breath as he missed the second, but fortunately Alexis moved in to take the other one down before he managed to return fire. Two down, two to go! He was just about to move forward when he saw her hand go over his head and heard her call out the last pair of targets. He had no idea how she knew they were there, but he wasn't about to question it. As Alexis dove he rotated around, dropping into a crouch and bringing up the carbine. A slight flick of his thumb had the blaster going into burst fire and, before the thugs could get off a shot at his partner, Rais let loose a hail of blaster bolts in their direction. Taken totally off guard the pair went down, each receiving a handful of shots to the torso. He kept the rifle trained until the simulation began to fizzle out and drop, leaving the two of them in the training room. The carbine was shifted to one hand and Rais stood, coming to offer a hand down to Alexis to help her up. "Not bad for two strangers, if I say so myself."

After she fell, she heard those blaster bolts go off. She stayed down into she heard those two thuds. She rolled over to her back on top of the boxes. She gave a slight sigh as she looked up to the man, hand extending to grip his *that* was offered. "Guess so." She used him to pull herself up to standing. "Alexis." She said, indicating her name. She brushed herself off as she arched a brow and shook her head. "Though, now we aren't strangers, it's sure to get worse." Smirk danced over her lips as she turned her back towards him and headed out of the warehouse simulator, and back into the open area. She wanted to know her score, how she did. Maybe it was just her, but this caused her the need to celebrate, with more ale. That was the sure fire way to fix her headache.

Batua shut down the simulation about 20 seconds after the last thug died. He had a few opinions on how things had gone but was overall pleased with the results. Then he sighed, Veller would want a report and he hated doing reports.

High Colonel Veller entered the training area from his observation post, nodding to the two bounty hunters. "Thank you for your time. I will call upon you when further training has been decided upon. Enjoy your stay." With that, he nodded again and left the room, motioning Batua to join him.

The two of them disappeared into one of the other training areas and there was the sound of a shutting door. Obviously, there was a way into the area set aside for the Bounty Hunters from the training room. Any examination would reveal that the door appears to be hidden in some fashion. There are a few areas that would be probably suspects for a door, but no conclusive evidence of where.

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