Monday - 7th January 2019
Natunda - 20th Kelona 1159
Denton Station - Extended Kuat Oribit
The Crew of the CRV Nesheni make a foray into local commerce, politics and intel gathering while visiting a bar at Denton Station.
The flight out was uneventful, but rocketing deep into First Order territory is probably a new one for most. Even during the Civil War, this would have been potentially reckless. Now? 'Reckless' might even be considered a solid game plan. It may be telling that the Captain is parked on the bridge smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee through most of the trip. Once at Kuat, little changed with him. There was the air of this being a casual thing to him and he was radiating it for a reason. An excited Captain makes for an excited, nervous crew.
Docking permissions secured easily enough after being scanned half a dozen times by patrol frigates and corvettes, and a pair of buzzing TIE. Docking was easier than having to put the ship into the lanes between all the security. And once the door opened at the airlock, Station Sec was there to meet them and just check IDs since there had been no prior registry of the ship there. Rance took the lead on getting things squared and offered to take care of the paperwork and head to the cargo office to get it all done. "I'll meet you guys at the bar."
The closest one to the assigned docking port? 'Barclay's Mount' is definitely skewed towards the First Order. There are a mix of enlisted and officer uniforms dotting the room with the tables of crews. It'll take a few minutes to get a look at the room and size up who might make for a good group to approach. But the bar seems to have plenty of drinks, food, and music.
Eyeing the room with a healthy air of curiosity and cynicism, and not so incidentally doing a rough head count while making note of the exits as she moves through the room toward the bar. The music has Fiora tapping the toe of one boot against the floor once she gets there, turning slightly so that she can lean back against the bar, elbows resting against the curved edge of it. "Did you hear the guy on the com?" she asks in a low voice before she pitches her tone down a good octave and mimics, "You have been scanned. While here, obey all laws and do not loiter. Finish your business and leave at once. Not exactly the most friendly of greetings."
Eko's wearing some coveralls that have seen better days, unbuttoned down halfway down her chest, revealing a black tank. At her head, currently holding her platinum blonde hair away from her face, are a pair of blue scanner goggles with dull orangeish lenses. Bits of the scanner goggles seem to have been secured with neon green tape. She's also wearing an old pair of scuffed up black boots that might be a half size or more too big for her. "Hey," she flags down the bar tender once they get to the bar. She orders something that can strip the hair off a wampa. She...ignores Diaz, only giving her bored, jaded looks in reply.
One might say a former Imperial would feel right at home in this place. Her old planet's accent is astonishingly similar to the ones present here, and it gives Sera a brief flashback to the years of her childhood. She isn't one to halt motion when thinking though, it's just that the familiar notion brings a natural smile to her face. Sera is an engineer, and she looks it. Everything about her screams maintenance, and the droid that follows her only confirms it. She doesn't go to the bar but instead finds the biggest group of enlisted she can find and meanders in with them. "Oi, you got another one of those, mate?" She nods toward his smoke. "Just got off a naster refurb, and I'm dyin' here, yeah?" The BB unit, 9-Line moves on without her master, finding a spot to charge and begin to passively record the entire room. Sera's hair is pulled back in a loose tail, and she's quick to hold up the wall in a casual lean, listening to the others chit-chat and watching them with an amused, but interested, expression.
The bartender, a woman, swings by the group to take orders and isn't shy about looking them over. There are eyes sweeping them from all over the room, but nobody seems ready to take immediate action to them. Instead, they are the outsiders they expected to be. Crews sizing them up not so much as potential ring partners, but more as rivals. Someone potentially there to take their business. Another crew thinning the income of their own. No surprises here, especially given the female dominance of the planet, there are significantly more women here than men.
However, one of the male officers in a teal uniform stands from his table of civilians and begins making his way the direction of Eko and Fiora, but his eyes do trail towards the other unknown - Sera. He's armed with a sidearm on his right hip. Down the sleeve, his rank is denoted as a Major. He's about 5'10 with a slender build and dark hair. His green eyes abehind thin wireframe spectacles, he does not bother to hide his interest in them as he threads through the bar with his blue drink in a glass. A few of the crews watch with furtive glances, waiting to see what happens.
But the group of enlisted seem surprised at the woman approaching them. There is a different sort of sizing up, more for the fight and gumption presented in just walking up to them. A Sergeant in brown suddenly chuckles, seemingly disarmed a bit by the accent. "Oi, here." He digs into the pocket of his trousers and removes a pack of till smokes, cigarettes from Kuat that produce a slightly musky lavender scent and taste. "You from Kuat?" The group of four other Stormtroopers follow the suddenly casual feeling from the squad leader.
The Major, watches the Stormtroopers a moment before looking back over to the two women as he gets closer. "Good evening. I cannot say I've seen you two around Denton Station before. Have you been out here before?" When he speaks, there is a utilitarian precision to his cadence and annunciation.
The bored, jaded, if not actually cynical looks she's getting from Eko in return brings a grin to Fiora's face. "Loiter," she draws the word out, enjoying the way it rolls off the tongue. Another casual skim of the room pinpoints Sera's location before she twists slightly again, "Whyrren's reserve, if you have any, Whiskey if you don't," pricing out the bottles on the top shelf with a flick of a glance even as the Major (whose rank she puzzles through by the time he graces them with his presence) makes his inquires. "No Sir," comes the amiable reply paired with an easy trace of a smile, "Bespin, myself," the casual inflection of accent in her tone of voice conveys this as well even as she lifts the newly acquired glass. "Cheers."
"If I have, I don't remember it," Eko replies, lifting her just delivered glass to inspect the contents lazily. She swirls the green stuff around as if it's more interesting than the Major. She doesn't offer where she's from either, only giving him a cursory glance as Fiora plays more friendly. Her gaze drifts beyond to Sera for a flash of a moment before she takes a sip of her drink and settles her emerald eyes on the man she's been ignoring. "It's customary to offer a name, or a drink, at the very least," she says cryptically with a little smirk. "Mine's Ekokana. People just call me 'kan."
The Engineer takes the smoke between her lips and leans forward, waiting for him to spark it to life. A long subsequent drag follows and Sera leans back again, sighing out slowly and moaning softly, like one does when they finally relax. "'ey, thanks, yeah?" The plume of smoke trickles from her nose and mouth and she regards the others, crossing an arm over her flat stomach, and angling the smoke wielding one up so that she can move it as needed. "N'ah. Came with a fresh crew on a real piece of work. Been up all night turnin' wrenches on the damn thing, bout done me head in, yeah? I says to the deck chief we needed a break. Otherwise, I'd still be sweatin' it out, know what I mean? Anyrate.. you lads look spiffy. What's the occasion?"
The bartender is quick with the order of whiskey to Diaz, lingering near them. The Major gives a gentle "Ah," to the answers that this is their first time out to the area 'around the station.' That was likely not a generalization, upon further reflection, but a reference to the space surrounding Denton. The drink held in his right hand is very still, almost like he were a droid holding on to it without a twitch of muscle. "I'm Major Tarn. Could I get the name of your ship." The words pieced together are certainly a question, but the inflection is more or less an order. At least he's polite. Sort of. "What's your business at Kuat and Denton?" This seems more addressed to both of them. It would be an easy assumption to make, but he does appear to want one of them to speak to it.
The Sergeant reaches out with his lighter and sparks the tip of the smoke for Sera. "'Ere ya go," he offers out. Two of the enlisted go back to their prior conversation, the third seeming to listen to both while the Sergeant goes on. "I used to do that. I worked with a crew off of Fondor," which is where his accent pegs him from. "I did two years with the guard there before signing on to get off the rock and get out. When the First Order came up? I was already thinking about leaving." He shrugs. "Nah, no occasion. This is just the bar closest to the F-O offices." He offers his hand out to shake. "Sergeant Allenson." He then gestures, "Paddrinz, Donbre, and Heff," he gestures to the others who just nod in return. "Want a drink?"
"The Nesheni, we're a new cargo hauler out of Nar and we are up to our eyeballs in debt," Fiora replies to the major as her drink arrives. "And sinking fast," the whiskey is tasted, sipped ever so delicately, then allowed to breathe while the pilot gently tips the glass to allow the liquid to swirl. "We're out here marking what commodities are moving in this arc of the cargo runs. A well researched list saves some pretty coin," she shifts the glass to her left hand to extend her right hand -paired with a smile- to Major Tarn. "Fiora Adura," by way of introduction.
"Speak for yourself. I've got no skin in it. What's your ship's name hmm?" Eko follows up after Fiora provides him the information he requests, and more. "Whatever. That's not my job to worry about," she mentions about Fiora's research. "She brings the charts and graphs. I bring the guns."
Sera hangs onto every word, her eyes alternating from watching his lips to watching his eyes. It's clear she works with machinery a lot, engineers often had to read lips over the loud noises. She has no trouble hearing here though, it was just old habit. She nods her head. "Fondor, 'ey. I visited there once. I was workin' on a commercial liner helping transport gear and travelers. The crew was eyin' some ships out that way, but we had drek pay. Hell, I still can't afford one!" She laughed. She pulls the smoke free when he offers his hand. She takes it firmly, shaking it like a working class woman. "Ay Sergeant? Mmm. I knew you all worked for a livin'! Tell ya what, lemme get the first round. My thanks for what you lads are doin'. Right proper work against pirates, yeah? Lost mah folks to that scum not long ago. Heard the First Order smashed their faces in afterward. I'm glad they did." Sera waves her hand at the barkeep, then gestures to the group.
"The Nesheni." Tarn repeats exactly as spoken. "I hope the debt does not prevent you from following proper protocols while here, then. Be very careful. Certain parties do not take kindly to too much success." There is nearly a sneer that twitches in with a smile. "And do remember that market speculation is forbidden." The dry words come without any further animation to his face. The words from Eko have his eyes (and eyes only) turn to her, flicking quickly. "Guns. Then you are security? Or do you have some sort of cannons on your ship?" There is the sense that if anyone had cannons clearly mounted then he would be quite aware of it. But even as the women look at him, they can still see beyond. The crews that were watching before seem to have lost interest, which may be a good sign for them. If the regulars are bored with watching, then that speaks to its own ends. Which means he will likely be gone soon, like a rather large fly. A 5'10" fly.
"You been to Fodor? Yea! Good place. Never realized how good until I saw some other planets." The Sergeant just laughs with it and gives an upnod of comraderie to Paddrinz across from him. He also laughs and nods with a humor only matched by the gravity of agreement. And if she is offering to buy the first round, Allenson laughs and gives an exaggerated shrug. "Oi, stop twisting my arm. Gonna rip it out of the socket!" The other Troopers are listening and laughing with it, happy to get some free drinks. The signal to the bartender gets her moving over their direction and away from Diaz and Eko. Allenson looks back to her and nods. "There's a lot of that scum lining the surface of the good people out there. Like that gross green drek on swamp water. Its gotta be skimmed off and thrown out." Like garbage. "Pirates, rebels, traitors. You know how it is. But we're happy to do it. At least I know this squad is, anyway. 'Ow about you?" He gestures his smoke to Sera as the drinks are placed at their table. "Why are you still doin' this private crew stuff? You seem like a good sort. The F-O needs people who aren't afraid of hard work."
"Security, where it's needed, but the First Order's already got things nice and uneventful around here, so I help out where needed. Trying to actually make myself more indispensable so I don't get dumped," Eko says with a little sigh. "You happen to know who the best person to talk to for cargo chatter is around here do you?"
"Speculation is such a harsh word, Major. And as its not something we're about, I quite agree. Making a list of whats bought and sold here, and the next legs of the route, is just good business," Fiora explains before taking another minuscule sip from the glass she's holding. She exhales a hearty laugh and the word "Cannons" to go with it. "Fortune should be so kind. Alas, no. Strong words and belligerent attitude backed up with small arms and strength of force. We get the job done, alpha to beta, on time."
Sera takes an empty chair from another table, waving her free hand with a mumbled "Cheers." Then sat it down at the table with the troopers. Their drinks arrive, and it's Sera's turn to answer questions. "I grew up on Jelucan. Real rough place, but Imperial, yeah. The Remnant still had a presence for awhile. I got looked at, me brother too. We was too short, they said." Laughing. "Too small for the armor, they said. Which was fine, I guess. I never was good at shooting things. Can you imagine? Me a kriffin' soldier? N'ah. Maybe got the attitude and heart to put the work in, but you lads got it rough. We hear about that pirate drek on the holos, you guys live it, yeah? I sleep better at night knowing you lot are crushing some skulls. 'Ey, cheers boys, and I mean it." She breaths in sharply, sniffing a bit before raising her ale for a long take. When it's lowered she doesn't even grimace. She does sniff again, the recycled air always bothered her sinuses. "I made my fortune learning the trade. Every ship needs a good mechanic, some pay higher than most. Job security I says. One day, a girl's gotta retire you know? Nice apartment, grill for the steaks, ale, place to go fishin'." She smirks. "Let's face it, that'll never be me." She laughs again.
"Uneventful is a goal of Order." Tarn says it carefully to Eko, still looking at her just a little off-center. "Your crew would do well to keep in mind that vigilance is key to protecting what is most important. Power achieved, as they say, is power perceived." He then shifts his eyes to Fiora and nods slowly to what she has to say. "Very well." He sips his drink once, watching them over the brim, then putting the glass to the bar in a single smooth motion. "May you hold the welcoming gaze of the First Order. As for cargo chatter?" He flickers a humorless smile. "Your Captain is already in the cargo offices. He would likely know." Without any other salutations, he turns and moves off, leaving the two women at the bar as he takes a datapad from his belt and begins tapping at it as he exits.
It leaves the two officers standing at the bar without anyone else paying them too much notice. There are a lot of crews here, though. Maybe half a dozen. Only two of them have any chairs open at their tables. One of them looks fairly well-off, a few of them sporting matching hats, and mostly eating while a pair of them are having a debate. They look like a solid, professional crew. ..The other? Three of them sitting at a table to the side with half-drank beers and looking like they just finished a long haul and are kicking back and enjoying some of the profits of war.
The Troopers take to their glasses and cheers, drinking long before going a bit back to their own discussion. Something about a certain sports team? Allenson keeps his focus on Sera, though, nodding along in understanding. "Pah! Nerfdrek. Wearing armor is one thing. But we could use people who understand engineering. Especially capable of getting into smaller spaces. And," he gestures around him, "this is Kuat. I'm fairly sure the women of the planet could make a pretty compelling argument in your favor." There is a distinct lack of mocking to it. He seems to hold a regard for the place and its society. The hand waves again, though, moving past the idea. "Not everybody gets the great assignments. I put our squad in for Corellia but its been three months and I guess they'll get to it when they do. Paperwork. You know how it is." The drink gets a relaxed sip, leaning his other arm on the table. "It sounds like you're not in any hurry to get out of what you're doin', though. You got family in the Order or were in the Fleet?" Curious as to why she came over to them, good humor to the curiosity.
"Yeah, thanks-for nothing," Eko sighs that last half to herself as she turns when Tarn turns away. A little scowl on her face as if it's only easy to play the part of the disappointed crew member wanting to get ahead. She takes a swig of her drink and strolls past the group of three, trying to see if she can overhear anything while she purveys the room, nursing her drink. Recon no doubt. And although her ears are open, her eyes end up on Sera and the troopers idly.
"I may be good at engineering, but I stack nothing to the height of the Kuati ladies. I can't even hold a wrench up to them. Proper good, almost as good as the Corellians, yeah?" She shakes her head some. "N'ah, I mean not really. My dad served. I can't recall the unit, but he was with the occupational forces on Jelucan. During his lifetime, Governor Tarkin anexed Jelucan. The man himself. They made my dad a proper trooper that day." She nodded and drank again. "I guess seeing you lot reminded me of home. Seeing the boys around the fire, swappin' stories about the day. Makes me miss the simpler days, you know what I mean?" Sera dabs her smoke out in the tray and leans back. Her stretching brings on a harsh grimace. "What bout you? Family business, here? Or you lookin' to be a proper officer one day? I imagine the uniform would look sharp on you." She smiles, matching his gaze.
The group of three that Eko passes isn't speaking especially loudly. A man and woman are talking at a normal, conversational level.
"-igure the next run we can probably do solo. I'm not interested in running with the Kamar crew again."
"I completely agree. That was reckless. I'm glad the corvette caught them. I didn't think that Lieutenant was going to believe us, though."
"He checked the logs. I'm just glad I recorded the vid feed." There are murmured agreements from the other two. Seems the Captain is the male of the two.
At the table, Allenson laughs at the point about the Kuati women. "True. That is definitely true. I dated one for a bit. Too awkward, though. She was very traditional. Her mom did NOT approve of her dating a guy with career prospects in the military. Her dad was okay with it, but.." The guy shrugs it off. Kuat. That's how it is. The part about Sera's dad gets a respected nod. "That's good blood and family pride, right there, ye?" he chuckles. "I can understand that, though. I was going to ask if you had a brother or sister who joined but I can see that with dad. Annnnd yes," he says more surely, smiling more personally with the point about the impression of the uniform on him. "Definitely. I want to move up in the Army. I want a field command, absolutely. Dropship. As many as I can get. And if you told me four years ago I'd be saying something like that now, I'd have laughed at you. Badly. But I do. You sound like you've got your career path mapped, though. You've still got a lot of time ahead for it, too. Want your own ship?"
"My father wasn't an officer type. Sure he had ambition, and he was loyal, but he worked for a livin' and instilled that in me. Ain't nothing wrong with earning a honest living. You work hard, ya' pour your heart into it, he says, and it'll work out in the end, yeah. He had himself a squad. They were all mates, grew up together too. Best shots I ever saw." She laughed and drank again. "Ahhh, not really mapped out, no. I enjoy my work, yeah. Life is full of twists and turns, you can't control how things fall, you know what I mean? For me, fixing things.. it just seemed simpler. You diagnose the problem, you fix it. No complications, no drama." Her tone took a slightly darker inflection, as if she were partially lamenting her own troubles, or perhaps engineering was her vice and escape. "Life ain't as easy, mate. Wish it were, but you can't take a wrench to it and turn out a few extra credits. Aye, probably won't ever get my own ship. I'm good for fixin' em, not flyin' them. I wish I were though. Tune up the ol' brain, ey? -- Sorry to hear about your luck ashore. Conservatives. Hffph. Can't see success in front of them if it smacked them across the face with a freighter. Just means you deserve better."
"Hey," Eko leans over to the crew. "You mind if I sit with you guys? My legs are fucking killing me. Been stuck on my feet for what feels like forever. You guys run the routes too?" She asks idly as she looks to them with an arch of her eyebrow for permission as she flicks her gaze down to an empty seat.
Allenson nods easily, understanding Sera in a very personal way. The connection of family and service. "Aye. I had pretty much the same shoved into me. You work or you get out. And if you're going to work, you be the best at what you do. And if you can't be the best, then you learn from the best to run with the best." The Sergeant nods along, then sips his beer. That's definitely. "Drama. I do -not- miss that about the private crews. That's one of the reasons I was done with working them. Military is the way to go for it, though. You can order people to just shut up!" Allenson laughs. "Such a nice relief when two people won't stop bickering like children. As for my luck? Pah. They got their rights to it. I got my opinions but I'm not interested in forcing my way in and showing my ass. They can be happy the way they are. Kinda like war, you gotta pick your battles. See who is worth fighting alongside, too. I'm sure you've got people you've worked with that you'd swing a wrench to protect, even if you're not stacking Kuat height."
The crew of three at the table seems to have hit a lull anyway when Eko peeks over them and asks about the seat. The other guy and the woman look to the Captain and he shrugs, gesturing to one of the empty chairs. "Sure. As long as you're not going to try and get us to take a job working for you where we have to buy a product then recruit people to work for us. Had enough of those damned pyramid schemes in my mail recently." The man has a deeper, more gruff voice than his thin frame would tell. There's a long pull of his beer and a pitcher on the table. "Yeah, we run the routes. I'm Captain Briggs, I run the Kinsha Fjor." He gestures to the woman across the table. "Remy Shoylat, my First Officer." She nods, lifting her beer a little. "The ugly guy down there is Bancroft. Chief Engineer." The guy gives a tired upnod. The XO speaks next, "Say you talking to Tarn. That guy is both a blessing and a curse. Looks like you passed."
"People call me 'kan, or Eko. I do security, among other things to fill in the gaps. On the Nesheni, fresh out here on these routes. I think maybe my boss is making sure our paperwork is all on the up and up still or something," Eko shrugs. "Fuck that noise. No, I'm just here. Want to get by like anybody else. Kinsha Fjor. Alright," she nods as if putting to memory and each person as introduced, her deep emerald eyes shifting. "You guys got any tips beyond not taking deals beyond staying out of your spam folder? Any ports we should steer clear of?" she asks at a lower note. She takes a sip of her drink and slouches back in her chair.
"I learned a slew of rules being in deep space. The chief among them is rule number one." She holds up a slim digit. "If you ain't willing to make a mural of a man's brains for harming your crew, then you ain't their crew." Sera says, grinning. "Jelucan is big on commitments. If we say we're gonna honor someffing, we honor it until it's the death of us." Sera says confidently. "That kinda loyalty is grown, yeah? Experienced. You see examples made of every one these days. Pirates turning tail to leave their mates in a fight. It's like people ain't worth their word no more. It's as slippery as credits." She finished her drink and waved for another. "My battles aren't battles no more. I got everyffing a girl needs. Drek to fix, drek to eat, drek for pay, and drek to kriff. Life couldn't be any more simpler." She smiles the Sergeant's way again. "Can't imagine you boys patrol a lot on the station. Seems pretty well managed?"
The trio drink as they listen, everyone looking dog tired. Eko holds their attention, though, without them looking bored or about to fall asleep. "Yeah," Bancroft chuckles, "don't convoy up with crews that think they can ignore warnings about no-fly zones. Sounds like the Nesheni is new here? Or at least you are?" Before he can say more, Briggs takes it up, "The First Order will impose no-fly zones around certain areas without warning. Popular theory is they do it to maintain control. Keep people on their toes. And its a good excuse to board ships if Captains think they can squeeze through. It rarely works. But they stay up for days at a time, usually near the F-O convoy transit hubs. Keeps everyone out of sensor range so it could be anything. Just take it easy when you're on approach to a station and obey the laws. It ain't hard but some people have a problem with authority. Then the ship gets impounded." A single shrug of one bony shoulder rolls across him. The XO picks up, "And if anyone offers you a lucrative deal to run arms, munitions, or anything dangerous? Decline. Politely. Even if its F-O. It ain't legal. Just walk away and report it." Briggs nods somberly, wide eyes as he stares at his beer a moment. They probably saw something first hand before he speaks again, "You guys set up fuel anything in particular? Gas? Liquid? Solids? Or anything cratable?"
The Sergeant nods firmly and aims the smoke at her in appreciation before he takes a drag. ashed into the tray, he looks back to her. "Exactly. A lot of crews will say that but there's usually so much infighting that you just wonder. Its why the F-O makes sense to me. I know I can count on the people beside me. Jelucan sounds like a good place to be from, though. Tough place, tough people. Makes a person's word count for more, sounds like." Getting everything she needs does get another laugh from him as he reaches for his drink. "Amen to that!" The glass is moved forward to cheers and clink to hers. The question to patrols gets a casual drift of his hand. "We patrol pretty much everything. Kuat's got their own military force but they were always behind the Empire during the War. They listen to us largely as long as views align. We keep things easy, usually patrol with them. I've probably seen maybe ten percent of the drive yards since I've been here." A lot. "Plus this station we effectively police because Kuat doesn't care as long as they get their income. At least that's how I see it. Its about as well managed as anything else with the Order, though. I don't complain. You can either truck with the best, or you can't. Just one of them things, yanno?"
"I am, for sure. Just getting to know this crew, so it's not like we're real lovey dovey or anything yet." Eko kicks up a leg, propping her ankle on her knee. "That's some good advice. Thanks. Oh I'm probably not the one to ask that. I know we can take crates that's for sure." Eko leans back toward Sera and shouts, "Eh! What can we haul again? Anything like gasses or liquids or creatures?"
"Case and point, my friend. It's all about the credits these days, yeah? Oh you want our loyalty? Pay us for it. Where's the sense of patriotism, ey? You boys are out here risking your necks against pirates, and all they care about is money." She punctuates her discontent with a long drink. "It should be better than that. Were I in a right nice shiny suit of armor, I'd come home every day and expect my lovely there to help with me boots, and to rub the sore away from my little ol' feet. Not cause I pay the bills though, lads. Because I'm loved. What I do is loved, what my mates accomplish.. is loved. You know what I mean? People sure don't appreciate what's in front of 'em, I tell you that. Right proper blessing, sometimes."
The trio of crew grumbles their own nodding of understanding with getting on with a new crew. "Hate that," is the muttered agreement among them. "Best thing you can run are medical supplies for the F-O convoys. They're expensive and need to be handled carefully. They usually interview crews for that drek, though. Clean ship, good flight record, no personnel issues with spotty histories. Everything is accounted for and it pays through the roof. But not many Captains want to deal with it. For everyone else? Its the food stuffs to the convoys headed for former Republic space. Pays well and its regular. Textiles, too. If you can find tech they need transported, that's good, too. Its all locked up in sealed containers, though, and they spot inventory on arrival. You can't leave until everything is accounted for. BUT-" Briggs lifts his glass, "they don't charge docking fee's for that since it takes longer. ...And don't run alone if you can avoid it." Which is also a generally good idea, but he seems to put some weight on it to Eko.
Allenson doesn't seem plussed by the mention of it. This is likely something he's long considered. "I'm actually okay with that. If you pay someone and they aren't dicking around, then that's loyalty with a foundation. Creds change hands, that's dependence. Its a working relationship. I get real uncomfortable with the people who are fanatical and blind. It means they ain't thinkin about the consequences. There's a time and place for enforcement of a standard, like imposing strict martial law on a place that's just been captured. But creds make the worlds go round, ye?" He pulls on the cigarette again before stubbing it out. "But I also get what you're saying. I can't put interpersonal love on the same level with nationalistic blind loyalty. You come home, the person you love is takin off your boots after a long day and mixing you a drink, they don't do it because its you or nothing else. Its because its you and them versus everyone else. That's a team, ye?"
Eko nods as she takes in each piece of advice, tilting her head as she weighs one opportunity against another silently. "They just want to make sure crews aren't skimming goods off the top at ports along the way or something? With all the extra processing of the manifest and verification and all that?" Then her eyebrows arch slightly, "What do you mean? Run with another crew? Because of pirates?"
"I suppose it's the Imperial in me, ey. To them, it was all in or not. No middle ground, no deviation." Sera said, explaining with a gesturing hand. "Dem days is long past though, and I reckon the mindset too." Sera says dismissively. "I can see at the end of the day, it's about business. So what you said makes sense to me, yeah? Just different time, different place." Sera makes a gesture to herself. "You guys get a lot of time off between rotations? I do 14 hour days, if I can be bothered. Most maintenance is preventative, and the days you have to chuck out bad parts for a corrective maintenance issue, might as well toss the schedule right out the airlock."
The XO, Remy, nods slowly. "Yea." She puts her arm over the back of her chair and sips her beer. "They know how much demand there is for F-O hardware on the black market. For a good while they were just weighing everything, but that got defeated pretty fast. So now its eyes-on inspections, usually, with tech. They don't have time to plug things in, that would take forever, but everything is in sealed crates anyway." There isn't a lot of concern from her. This is old hat for her. Briggs is about to answer the rest when Bancroft picks up to the question of ships, "Ships disappear. Not a lot, but enough. You see a crew one day, then you realize six months later you haven't seen them since. Ask around, nobody has seen them for awhile and nobody can pinpoint when the last time was. So don't let your Captain run alone. ...It could be pirates but not many people think that is the case." Briggs leans forward, clearing his throat. "Its probably Hutts taking slaves, then selling the ships and taking the cargo for market. Its pure profit. There's no proof, just some rumors runnin' around tables like this. You know a guy who knows a guy who swears he saw one of the vanished crews cleaning vomit on a casino ship or something." When Eko calls out, though, they glance towards Sera and the table of enlisted. Then all look back towards their beers and take a keen interest in not looking that way.
"Pah," he waves his hand again with a grin. "Don't excuse it as the Imperial. The Empire was great. But people have to eat and trade has to move. You understand what I mean, I understand what you mean, we're there," he laughs. "Some time between rotations. Usually eight hours on patrol, an hour to bracket each end with other duties. You know how it goes. But-" he glances to the chron on his wrist, then to his squad, "-its time we get going." Looking back at Sera, he smiles. "If you're going to be here for awhile, look me up. We can get another beer sometime. You can tell me more about Jelucan, ye?"
"Well, thanks guys," Eko purses her lips slightly and finishes off her drink. She doesn't leave the empty glass with them though. She takes it with her, pushing herself up to her feet, looking more tired than intoxicated. "I think she's a little too busy flirting to give me an answer just now." She grins sharply and lifts her empty glass as she steps back in retreat to drop her glass off at the bar. She then leaves for the restroom, perhaps hoping it's a little nicer than the head on the Nesheni.
Sera hands him her holo-digits. "Call me. I can work my schedule around it, pending any big repairs." She slapped the table at the other members of the squad. "Look after your sergeant, boys. He's a good man, and you don't always find good sergeants, ey." She provided a two-fingered salute and smiled a friendly smile. When they leave, Sera finishes her drink and motions for 9-Line. The chief makes her way back aboard the ship then, for actual maintenance work.