Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Liz Dorner and Christopher Levy.
One year before the Battle of Yavin (34:10:12) in the Tshindral system: Gateway Space Station.
Major Kerrie Kiley and Parka Pepper.

Left to her own devices in terms of entertaining herself while her counterpart finished his business dealings, the strange young woman known as Parka negotiated the station freely, hands stuffed into the pockets of a black leather duster, skimming the floor behind a pair of knee high boots. With a content look on her face, Parka meandered leisurely among the sentients present, watching with passive curiosity at the comings and goings of any number of beings. Beneath her long coat she wore an outfit from her usual chosen ilk of fashion, something stylish and alluring, and barely covered. She drew to a halt amid the bustle, gazing about in mild interest as she contemplated how best to occupy her time for the afternoon.

Kerrie Kiley blended in among the bustling crowd of spacers that populated the station. As it used to be an Imperial facility, she had been provided with solid intelligence on the layout. By now she felt comfortable in the environment as she had walked around extensively while Parka remained in the vessel. It had taken considerable effort on her part to locate the individual that was helping her target, and even more work to track down the ship she was now using to travel the space lanes ... but, it was worth it. Because they were out in public, she simply could not pull a blaster and start shooting ... she would have to be more subtle, but that was not one of her strong suits. As she noticed Parka walking through the station she lowered her head towards the deck-plating, scrunched her arms at her sides, and began to follow her in an unassuming manner. As her Human appearance had been seen by her and her natural appearance would draw too much attention, she mimicked the appearance of a Devaronian female. Her reptilian-grey skin now a bright red color, and a single plum of hair where previous there was none, her transformation would be virtually impossible to detect, provided she could maintain her concentration. Her uniform of the day not exactly suited for such a mission, and her personal armor far too conspicuous for this location, she was forced into wearing a black transport flight-suit, loose fitting to allow her transformations to go unhindered. She vowed to herself she would succeed this time as she waited for Parka to arrive at a location where she could approach her.

Unsuspectingly, Parka shuffled past a beverage kiosk where she briefly stopped to purchase a small coffeine. Her stroll carried her past a small bar and rec room, and Parka gave in to the urge to trade in the coffeine for a good drink. Tugging out one of the bar stools, she settled herself onto it and ordered a Whyren's Reserve.

Kerrie rubbed her gloved hands together excitedly, being so close now that she could almost taste it. Parka had embarrassed her and she wanted revenge, but she would resist the urge to just shoot her in the back and end this ... She wanted to do something ... more. Her lips curled into a sly grin as she passed through a sea of spacers and migrants until she neared the bar. She noted that the stool on Parka's left was open, but that would be too obvious. She instead moved through the crowd and sat three stools away from her. She turned her head towards Parka only briefly, her mimicked yellow Davaronian eyes glaring at her only for a moment before her attention turned to the bartender. "Give me a pint of the local ale," she said rudely, not here to make small talk with a lonely bartender. After ordering she disconnected each of the gloves from her flight suits and placed them upon the bar, revealing the faux red skin below. She never had red skin before ... she admired the remarkable likeness herself for a moment before grabbing the glass of ale placed before her. "I'm going to regret this," she thought to herself as she raised the glass and took a hearty sip. Her head turned again towards, Parka, as she waited.

Blissfully unaware, Parka leaned forward to rest her elbows on the bar top, occasionally lifting the glass of Whyren's to her lips every so often, grey eyes with black lifts lifted to any number of holovids around the bar, broadcasting sports highlights and scores. The exiled Hapan misfit, brushed a couple of braided dreadlocks back behind one of her ears, actually beginning to relax and enjoy the surroundings. With little else to do, she had copious amounts of time to blow on idle, non-productive activities, and this seemed a great start.

Kerrie grabbed the glass in her right hand as she slid off the barstool. When she was back on her feet she walked towards Parka slowly, careful not to make any movements that might be interpreted as hostile. As she reached the open barstool to Parka's left she stopped and smile at the Hapan female. "Is this seat taken?" she asked in a polite tone of voice, it took every bit of skill to contort the muscles in her face into a proper smile ... it was not something she did often.

Parka's moderate interest in a shockball tournament results disappeared momentarily as her light grey pools darted from the vid screens to the Devaronian inquiring about the open stool next to her. "No go ahead" Parka replied absently, focus immediately returning to the sports commentator. Tuning all else out, a dangerous habit indeed, her semi-distant attention span resettled, easily disturbed, and just as easily lured back.

Kerrie nodded her head to Parka, the smile as fake as her appearance still plastered on. "I hope my face does not get stuck this way," she thought to herself as she boosted herself on to the stool and placed her glass back a top the bar counter. She took another sip of the rather skunky ale, the smile finally vanishing from her face. Returning the glass to the counter she leaned towards Parka and whispered quietly, "You really should not be out in public like this." She backed away slightly and tried to give her a reassuring smile as to not draw any alarm.

As if on cue, Parka froze, eyes widened slightly and staring straight ahead. Her head turned ever so slowly to the left slightly, eyes panning to the unfamiliar face that was uncomfortably invading her personal space to whisper warnings at her. Parka's attractive Hapan features leveled to a grave seriousness, a thousand scenarios running through her mind suddenly like hundreds of old fashion reels of film. She regarded the female with a singular intensity that bore into her as she attempted to decipher the underlying intent of the forewarning.

"Don't worry," Kerrie said to Htaere very kindly, the smile never leaving her mimiced face. She reached with her right hand and placed it upon Parka's left hand, attempting to instill some sense of comfort with the woman. "I'm a friend," she began to explain, "I was sent to make sure nothing happened to you." She moved in closer towards her before continuing, "I'm a friend of Derek's."

Parka's head bobbed in the makings of a nod to acknowledge the stranger, but it did not stop the hair on the nape of her neck from standing on end. " considerate of him" she replied, her tone even and measured, slow and deliberate. Her eyes remaining on the Devaronian, she raised her glass and drained the contents before setting it back down on the bar top and sliding down off the stool. "I appreciate that...really...if you'll excuse me please" she continued, moving to the entrance of the establishment, more mindful of the goings on around her.

"I'll come with you," Kerrie explained cheerfully, "and make sure you get back safely." She did not bother to finish her drink, however, she did not want to taste anymore of that filth. She stopped to grab her gloves and then quickly hurried after Parka. "My patience may yet pay off," Kerrie thought to herself as she caught up with Parka. She smiled politely to her once again and began walking alongside her, presumably towards Derek's ship. She considered that would be the most likely spot to recover the disk ... if it was not already too late.

Parka emerged into the waning afternoon sunlight, her perfect Hapan tiers pursing slightly at the voice behind her. She put out her best effort and stopped, turning on her heels to face the Devaronian and muster up her warmest friendly grin. "That won't be necessary. I'm sure your time is valuable and I wouldn't want to squander any more of it with such frivolity" she said. She wasted no time in hurrying off, shifting into the flow of traffic like a single grain of sand in a storm.

"I'm afraid I have to insist, Parka," Kerrie informed her as she pushed through the crowd to follow her. "After all," she continued, with a slight laugh, "a promise is a promise." Of course the promise she was referring to was not the one she had mentioned to Parka, but nevertheless this was one fish she would not allow to slip off the hook again. "I'll wait with you just until Captai ..." she paused, noting her slip, "Derek gets back. That way he can't get away with saying I 'owe' him anymore." A sly smile returned to her face as she once again pulled alongside Parka.

Parka's teeth gritted. Her nerves were on the fast track to frazzled as she inwardly weighed her options. With a steep breath, she mentally rattled off a few possibilities before finally letting her shoulders drop from their tight near-hunched position to just shy of a relaxed slump. Parka drew upon her physical appeal and her witty charm and cast a mischievous grin to the persistent nuisance beside her. "Well then...for the sake of good company..." she leaned closer to the Devaronian, close enough to catch her scent, close enough to search through the windows of her eyes, close enough that her breath was hot on the female's ear "...let me get you a drink."

"We just had a drink..." Kerrie informed her, the voice sounding somewhat concerned, "It is better we get you back to the ship." Kerrie reached out with her right hand and placed it on Parka's left shoulder, smiling at her once again before continuing, "Come on. It's not far." She attempted to draw Parka towards the docking bay, having noted her ship's docking assignment carefully before following her through the station. "I'm sure Derek has a bottle stashed somewhere too," she continued as she moved towards the docking bay. "Who knows what we'll find..." she said a bit more quietly, the innuendo perhaps a bit too much.

Nice try...Parka thought to herself. Her expression did not betray her thoughts, and she kept her full fledged attentions on her 'companion.' "Oh no, I insist..." Parka responded, gently plucking the Devaronian's red skinned hand from her shoulder, using it to reel her in closer so that they nearly touched, devouring her new friend visually. "Just a few drinks..." Parka chimed in her pointed ear again.

Kerrie looked around the bustling corridor of the space station ... no way could she pull a blaster in this situation. She had hoped it would have been easier to persuade her back to the ship, but now she could see it would not. She smiled at Parka and raised her eyelids at her, giving up ... for now. "I guess a few drinks wouldn't hurt..." she told her begrudgingly, and turned around to once again face the bar. She began walk back towards it, noting that at some point she would have to return to the ship ... and then she would make her move. She had been called a virtuous person, but at moments such as this she could make use of added patience.

Parka ushered her friend towards the bar, guiding her actively to a bar stool and taking a seat of her own. The Devaronian shared the same height and frame as she, and Parka had done a good bit of silent evaluation to measure up how difficult she would be in a match. Parka waved at the tender. "Four Alderaan Ruge's please" she said, before throwing a sugary sweet smile to the side. "Your name is...?"

"Four!" Kerrie exclaimed in her head as she heard Parka order the drinks. This was not going to go well for her. She was a recovering alcoholic and while she used to hit the bottle with the best of them, she had not touched hard liquor in several years. She shook her head nervously as she watched the drinks being lined up at the table. It brought back many memories ... none good. "Mithrak," she said, informing Parka of her name as she dipped into one of the many aliases she had created over the years. "I hope those are all for you," she said in a joking manner as the fourth and final glass was filled.

Parka was charming for sure, in a stubborn, irritating kind of way, and she laid it on thick. She slid two of the glasses in front of the Devaronian. "Well...Mithrak, it is a pleasure..." Parka lifted one of the glasses in front of her and waited for her now reluctant company to do the same. "For us girls...bottoms up..." she announced, shooting the liquor without so much as batting an eye, the momentary anguish of swallowing such potent booze manifested for but a second. She turned her pleasant gaze to Mithrak. "Your turn..."

Kerrie took hold of one of the glasses and flashed a quick smile at Parka before turning her full attention to the glass. She stared at it for a nervous moment before taking hold of it. She raised it in front of her, her eyes narrowing on the liquid. "She couldn't just go back to the ship..." she complained to herself inside of her head. Reluctantly, she placed the glass against her mimicked lips and tilted it upwards and downed the entire contents in one motion. The reaction was not as strong as she expected, it was like riding a bike ... one never truly forgot how. She cleared her throat as the liquid ran down her throat, leaving a sharp taste and a slightly burning sensation. She cleared her throat uncomfortably, before placing the glass back on the bar counter, upside down.

Parka decided to test the female thoroughly, pushing and insinuating until she was thoroughly overwhelmed. "Oh so you drink...well then...tonight fate brings you a challenger..." Parka commented, prodding the next glass towards Mithrak casually. " have been chosen to baby-sit me hmm? Derek warned you I assume?" Parka fished for her own glass, lifting it to near eye level and swirling the small rocks glassware a bit before bringing it to her mouth and downing all of it. She smiled as she set the glass down in front of her and fixed the being with an expectant gaze.

"He did not warn me about your drinking, unfortunately," Kerrie said as she raised the second glass to her lips. "He did however mention you'd gotten yourself in some trouble with the Empire..." She explained quietly before downing the second glass of liquor as easily the first. She began to feel a warm feeling emanating from the center of the body as her metabolism increased. It was strong, but it hit the spot. She lowered her head for a moment as she cleared her throat once again. The empty glass soon found its way next to the other one.

"Oh yes you've heard" Parka countered, her smile never wavering. "They're effort thus far has been lacking...they've sent the most hideous creature you've ever seen to tidy up." Parka seemed to relish in the snide remarks, making quite the effort. She waved a hand towards the tender. "Two more please" she called before her gaze pivoted back to Mithrak.

"I'm sure what she lacked in appearance ... she made up for in skill," Kerrie told her, her gaze tightening on the Hapan. Inside, she was fuming at the woman's statement, but she would not lash out at her. "Any idea why they're after you?" she asked as she reached for another glass. She tilted her head at her slightly, hoping to illicit some type of useful response. A moment later and the contents of the glass once again were splashed against the back of her throat, producing the same reaction inside of her. She closed her eyes for a moment as it ran down her throat, leaving a trail of irritation as it made its way down. It again forced her to clear her throat. "Excuse me," she said as she began to loosen the collar of her flight-suit.

"Oh...yes...skill...definitely" Parka retorted before allowing herself a heart laugh at the expense of the creature in question. "Yes, actually" Parka answered, offering no further information. "Shall we do another round?"

"I'm up for another round if you are," Kerrie told her confidently, her eyes darting quickly to the row of empty glasses arrayed in front of them. "But first..." she said, changing the subject as her eyes turned back towards Parka, "Why don't you tell me why they're so interested in you?" She learned forward, lowering her voice as she did not want to be overheard, "Captai ... Derek ... said something about a disk?" She forced a confused look onto her face, attempting to convey a sense of ignorance to the Hapan.

Parka feigned a good laugh before her playfulness seemed to melt a bit. An edge seemed to developed to her tone, though her artificial smile didn't budge. "How about I don't..." she issued firmly.

"Suit yourself," Kerrie said with a smile, but in reality she was growing quite frustrated with this game they were playing. She smiled again as she raised yet another glass to the mimicked Devaronian lips that were serving quite well as a method of taking in the alcohol this evening. She sipped slowly on the liquid at first, knowing she was about to reach her limit, but once it hit her lips she broke down and threw the entire contents into her mouth one last time. She steadied herself as she felt her body shake from the liquor, she nearly broke her concentration but dug down and found the last of her strength to keep from reverting to her natural state. Clearly this was the last drink she could handle this evening. She slammed the glass upon the counter, and raised her arm across her mouth to wipe aside the last traces of the booze that remained on her lips. "If all they want is the disk," Kerrie began, attempting to reason with her, "Why don't you just give it to me? It'll get them off your tail and you can get on with your life." She smiled one last time, hoping it would be enough to convince her.

"Oh I'm willing to put stock in that deal..." Parka replied sarcastically, digging down into a pocket to leave some credits on the bar top. "Besides, I don't negotiate with peasants" Parka smirked, her phony smile giving way to reveal an icy resolve to her voice.

"I've dealt with those people before," Kerrie began to explain, but soon found herself distracted by the effects the alcohol was beginning to take on her system. She raised her right hand to her temple slightly and braced her head. "Ugh..." she groaned lightly as the room started to spin.

"Not now..." she frustratingly groaned as she became overwhelmed. She shook her head slightly before raising her head to look at Parka once again. "Can we go back to the ship now?" she asked, with almost a desperate sound in her voice. She reached out with one hand to hold onto the bar, beginning to feel slightly out of sorts.

Parka watched, eyes twinkling and expression softening once more. "What's don't look so good" she stated somewhat coldly, annunciating each word intentionally, taking a few steps back to remain clear should the Devaronian topple.

"I'm ... fine," Kerrie tried to explain to Parka, wobbling slightly as she felt herself begin to lose her balance. A nauseous feeling began to emanate from her stomach ... she had consumed too much alcohol on an empty stomach and now she was paying the price for it. "I'd just like to get back to the ship is all," she informed her 'companion' as she slid forward slightly, relying on the bar to support herself. "We had a few drinks and now we should get back," she continued trying to reason with her, "We wouldn't want Derek to worry."

"Oh yes, we sure don't" Parka agreed, nodding slowly. Parka backed away before turning on heels and spinning around to face forward. She moved quickly, aware that her "keeper" was struggling with basic motor skills. As she hastened to the door, she bothered to glance back over her shoulder once, but failing to wait for Mithrak. "Come on, step lively" she called, stifling a laugh as she brushed away the guilt of intentionally goading a drunk.

"Wait..." Kerrie shouted, slightly drunk towards Parka as she headed towards the exit. Kerrie's speed had slowed as she struggled with keeping herself upright. While able to walk, she was not able to 'hurry' and she struggled to keep up with her target. "Slow down," she called out to Parka as she stopped for a moment, the distance between them growing. She placed her right hand on top of her stomach and held it there for a moment, the feeling of nausea coming over her. "Ugh ... ugh ..." she groaned as she felt the fluids in her stomach rise into her throat. Through fierce regurgitation she was able to keep from throwing up, but could not continue after Parka quickly enough. She was growing increasingly frustrated as almost every individual between her and Parka was bumping into her, keeping her from catching up. "Wait up," Kerrie once again cried out in vein.

Aware of the voice behind her, Parka failed to acknowledge it. Instead, she drove forward, weaving smoothly in and out of the crowd, sparse as it may have been. The space between she and Mithrak grew exponentially before Parka felt she was completely out of site, Parka ducked off to the side down one of any number of corridors throughout the station. She dug aimlessly about her person for her comm unit, occasionally easing around the corner of the wall to keep an eye peeled for the intoxicated Devaronian.

"Damn it," Kerrie cursed as Parka disappeared. She had been so close, but the pest had escape her grasp again. However, at the moment she had bigger problems. She stood in the center of the corridor for a moment, the entire place appearing to be spinning as the full-effect of the liquor overtook her. "Oh..." Kerrie groaned as she finally lost her full composure and reverted into her Clawdite form. She stayed in this state for a moment as she began spitting up some stomach acids that had reached her palette. "Ugh," she groaned as she refocused and shifted back into the Devaronian form she had assumed for the evening. "I am in so much trouble," she muttered to herself as she headed to the docking bay to get aboard her ship before the situation got any further out of hand.

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