((Joint post with Grace))
"Ex-CorSec," Niara corrected. "And you're right... I am on their hit list. So as it turns out, the connection was mutually beneficial. I saved her from being shot when she stole her ship; she took me with her... for a brief trip, anyway." She frowned darkly at Shyla. "And she still hasn't apologized for that..."
"Well, I'm sorry if an exiled Jedi got me jittered," Shyla hissed, careful to keep her voice low. "Yeah, you saved my life, but I've known Jedi before... and I've heard stories of exiles. I couldn't take the chance that you were..."
"Unfriendly," Niara completed. "You might have at least dropped me off on a genuine planet. That would have freed you from the situation you find yourself in now."
"And what situation is that?" Shyla demanded. "So far as I know, you have no legal binding contract with me. If I decide I'm not going to do anything for you, there's nothing you can do about it."
"True," Niara agreed. "However, you want to help. I can feel your guilt. You regret leaving me behind. Now, you're presented with a situation in which you can redeem yourself, but you play hard to get because you're afraid I hold a grudge against you."
"If you don't, you sure play a grudge well," Shyla grumbled. Niara smiled faintly.
"I only confronted you in the way you wanted to be confronted," she said. "You felt guilty and you wanted justification. But the guilt is not yours, Shyla. Let it go."
"Can't do that," Shyla protested. "You may not hold grudges... still not convinced of that, by the way... but I have a mind so sharp I can't forget anything... and I can't..." She sighed. "I'm sorry, Niara. I just can't let it go. And that's why I can't stay."
"I won't stop your departure," Niara said. "But I know you'll be back."
A mixture of several emotions flooded Shyla's face and she stood, prepared to move to a seperate table. But then, she sat right back down.
"Redemption, huh?" she asked. "Could use a little less guilt on my head." With a reluctant sigh, she finished, "Alright, Niara, Ferod. Tell me how I can help."