A Daring Duty
A bounty hunter’s tale…..
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“Boom!”, was the sound Tek heard. An argument in a speeder has caused two poor souls to perish in flame. Why was Tek even acknowledging the crash. He was used to that kind of thing…
Tek, a mandolorian bounty hunter was on his way to a meeting with a “Black Sun” deathstick dealer, in the Uscru Entertainment District. Flax, he called himself. Tek had a slight suspicion to this shady character’s identity. The conversation they had shared over his helmet communicator made him feel a bit uneasy. But he needed the high credit bounty Flax had offered.
Tek arrived at the Snapping Septoid, eager to here about his mission. “Tek! Over Here!” Flax’s greeting was kind, but a bit embarrassing. Tek remembered something his father had told him as a boy in training. “First impression’s are everything.” Tek slowly made his way thru the club in the direction the voice had come from, wondering how he had been seen, but could not find Flax himself.
“Tek my boy! Have a seat.” A surprising look was on both there faces. Flax was surprised how small Tek was. Tek was surprised how big Flax was. A sigh of relief came over the bounty hunter as he saw this “Flax person” was not a Jedi ready to capture him. Till this day Tek was still haunted of that horrible night when the Jedi filled his house taking his father away from him and his mother. He suddenly came out of the flashback. “You okay son?” Flax asked. “Fine, I’m Fine” Tek responded. Flax looked to be a tall and pudgy trandoshan. The mandolorian sat down. Flax yelled at a waiter to bring them some jawa juice. They sipped for a few seconds. “Now, let’s get down to business. There is a human, Fin Ulrak, who has information that could ruin our company’s deathstick trade forever. I am in charge of dealing with the bounty hunters such as yourself, who seek out these jobs. Since this particular situation is fairly risky, I put a high price on this scumbag’s head hoping to attract highly skilled bounty hunters, and I do believe that I have found one. “You are correct, Flax” Tek said. “So, when do I start?” “Right now…” replied Flax.
Tek slowly walked across the thug ridden streets staring at the cool black ground. As much of a filth hole as Coruscant was he loved that city. He moved there at the early age of 15, and had lived there ever since. “Was this the right thing to do?” he thought to himself. “Do I really want to associate with such a risky dealer? Ah, forget about it. Just keep your eyes on the reward.” 1,500,000 Credits was the price on this bozo’s head. “He shouldn’t be any harder to track down than any of the previous slime ball’s lives I’ve ruined. I guess I’ll go to Neb’s.”
Neb Groban was a weapon specialist and dealer who owned a shop a few levels down. Tek step thru the doorway to be greeted by his old friend. “Tek! Old buddy! Where the fierfek you been all these years eh?” “Oh you know, just the normal.” Replied Tek. “You rascal! So, what can I do for you?” the mandolorian said. “ I need something special. Perhaps poison filled. It should be able to travel silently and fast, yet be big enough to fit my sniper.” Said Tek. “Well, in that case, I have just the thing you need than.” Answered Neb. “I had a feeling you would.” Replied Tek. “Oh you know me old buddy, always got something useful in this hole I call a shop. But anyway, here’s your precious bullets.” He said. “ Amazing! There light as a feather but still large enough to fit most standard snipe’s!” Tek said. “And that’s not all. They whistle silently from great distances striking fear into your enemy’s heart. Not to mention there super fast when fired from high powered rifles. Oh and check this out!” Neb pressed a tiny button on the bullets wing. “You can insert a small bottle of poison here! Amazing isn’t it.” He said. Tek Stared in awe as he fondled the small bottle of poison. “Yes, yes it is. What is this small sign right her? Firefek It’s illegal here. There’s always a catch with you isn’t there Neb?” Sighed Tek. “I’m afraid so lad. Sorry.” He chuckled. “Come on Tek. You’re a Bounty Hunter! Since when do you care about what’s legal and what’s not?” Said Neb. “Since an incident with the law that happened a few years back I can never forget. What does it matter? Now shut up and give me the Bullets you scoundrel! And do you have any of these other items?”
“Now.” Thought Tek. “Where should I start looking for Ulrak? I guess police records could be promising.” Arriving at the station he asked the desk attendant where the U files where. She directed him down a long narrow hall leading into a large circular room. “Lets see. Ulraj, Ulrajen, Ulrak. Here we go.” Tek found himself very irritated. The file contain only one small crime. According to the CSF, Fin Ulrak has committed no crime’s other than assaulting an old lady. “Fierfek! I need some sort of lead on this guy.” Tek called Flax on his helmet communicator hoping for some evidence of where Ulrak mite be. “Flax? It’s Tek. Yes I have started looking for him. No, no I haven’t found anything yet. That’s actually why I called. I need to know if he has any close friends, business partners, anything in that sort? He does? Thanks, that’s all I need. Alright, lets pay this neimodian a visit.
“Ding, Dong…” Went the door as Tek stepped through. He walked over to the counter to find a neimodian neatly stacking canned meat. “Are you a friend of Fin Ulrak?” Said Tek. “Why yes, is he okay?” answered the neimodian. “Come with me now.” Tek replied grabbing him by the arm, forcing him out the door and shoving him onto a bench. “Sit down, now! Look, I’m going to make this quick and simple. Your friend, Fin Ulrak, is wanted by the Black Sun. He has information that could ruin there deathstick trade forever, and put all of there dealers in prison. If you happened to know where he is at all, tell me now.” Tek said with force. “If I tell you, it would be betrayal. Not to mention he would kill me” The neimodian replied. “Look. Your life is worth no more than a wamp rat to me. If you don’t answer me right now, I will incinerate you with my flamethrower right here, and leave your carcass for the birds. It’s your choice. Make your decision now.” Tek stated. The neimodian cleared his throat. “Ahem. Now that you put it that way, I mite just know a little something or two. He said. “Spill it!” said Tek. “Okay, Okay! Here’s what I “can” tell you. I know that he spends most of his time in a bar down in the Crimson Corridor. He hang’s out with some street gang. They call themselves the “Raptors” I think.” The petrified neimodian said. “The Raptors? Well, That just makes my job all that more, interesting.” Tek knew of these “Raptors”. A fierce street gang that preyed on the innocent civilians that live in the Crimson Corridor. In fact, the Crimson Corridor itself was a frightening lower level that saw only a few minutes of sunlight a day. It would certainly be fun down there. “Thank you, That all I need to know.” Tek said.
Tek decided it would not be safe to venture down into the Crimson Corridor without a speeder. At the parking lot where he kept his transport he was tapped on his shoulder. “Hey, you want to buy some deathsticks?” said the stranger. “Are you aware of the situation you are in my friend? I should kill you just for ruining my day.” Tek said furiously. “Let him go, bounty hunter.” A Jedi emerged from the shadow. “And just who do you think you are telling me what to do?” Tek said, even madder. “Easy friend. I am Jedi Qui-gon Jinn. I can deal with him.” Qui-gon Jinn looked directly into the deathstick dealers eyes. “You don’t want to sell us any deathsticks. You want to go home and sleep.” said the Jedi. Amazingly, the dealer repeated exactly what had been said to him, and left. “Leave me alone, Jedi.” Said Tek. “Wait. You seem troubled. Maybe I can help?” Jinn Said. “If you must know, I’m looking for someone, Fin Ulrak. He’s wanted by the Black Sun.” Tek replied. The Jedi closed his eyes and seemed to black out. Once he opened them again he looked at the ground. “Why don’t you try asking his previous employer.” He said. A loud bang made Tek turn around blaster in hand. “ What previous employer…?” When he turned back around, the Jedi was gone. “I hate Jedi.” Tek muttered to himself.
On his way to the Crimson Corridor, Tek wondered if the Jedi, this mysterious Qui-gon Jinn, was right. He called Flax, again. “Flax? Hey, it’s Tek. I had another question. Do you know of any, previous employment, Fin Ulrak mite have had? A scrap metal shop down in the Crimson Corridor? Really? That’s, odd. I talked with his friend and he said he spent most of his time down there in some bar with the Raptors. I guess I’ll check it out. I’ll call you if I get anymore leads.
Down in the Crimson Corridor, Tek was on the move. He wanted to get out of there as soon as possible. “The Neimodian didn’t mention a name, Flax didn’t either. I guess I could ask some locals. Better switch to thermal vision.” Instantly, Tek began making his way down the streets of this dark, and crime ridden labyrinth. He only saw small rodents, which offered no help at all. “I am beginning to wish I hadn’t taken the job.” A few moment later Tek turned a corner to see movement in an alley. The strange shadow darted across the street into another alley. Tek darted after him. “Wait! Wait! I need your help.” The figure kept running. Tek pursued him into a corner. Once he realized he was trapped he crawled up into a ball and began to cry. “Easy, friend. I’m not going to hurt you” Tek said, calmly. “Do you know these streets?” The stranger nodded. “Can you tell me of any bars or scrap metal shops around here?” The weequay (that’s what he appeared to be) looked puzzled. He pointed in a direction. “There…” He said. Tek knew weequay were not known for there intelligence. “Which one?” Tek asked. “Both” The weequay answered. “Thank you my friend.” Tek said. Tek tossed him a few credits. “There you go my friend, You deserve it.” Tek hadn’t given him much, a measly 50 credits, but he knew down there that’s more than a hard worker earned in a month. The weequay jumped up in excitement, and ran off, apparently skipping as he went. “It always feels good to help an innocent soul out.” Tek muttered to himself.
30 minutes later , Tek, had finally found the scrap metal shop Ulrak had previously worked in. He open the door and found a scrawny looking old man. “Hello, can I help you?” The human said. “Actually yes.” Tek replied. “I am looking for a previous worker of yours, Fin Ulrak. Have you seen him recently?” Tek asked. “ Ulrak? Why I haven’t seen that fool in years. I’m terribly sorry I could be of no assist.” Said the Man. “No, its fine. I’m used to that sort of thing.” Tek said with a shrug. He began to make his way back out the door. “Wait!” Cried the old man. “I do know that he hangs out in a bar a few blocks down. The Wampa Cave, I believe its called. Hope that’s helpful.” the old man said. “Like you wouldn’t believe.” Tek said.
A few minutes later, Tek arrived at the Wampa Cave. He entered to find it crawling with street thugs. Tek scanned the room. He noticed a some raptor tattoos on a few humans, sitting in a corner. He decided to start there. “Hello gentlemen.” He said. “I’m looking for someone, Fin Ulrak, who is said to hang around with raptor members. You know him?” Tek said, obviously annoyed. “Eh? What‘s in it for me?” The thug replied. “What’s in it for you?” Tek said beginning to laugh. “How about…Your life.” Tek pulled his Westar-34 on him pushing the barrel into his temple. “Easy buddy! I can tell you, I can tell you! He’s over there at the bar to the right!” The thug said. “See, that wasn’t hard at all, now was it” Tek said. “No, no sir.” Said the human. Tek holstered his blaster, and began to walk off. Instantly, he was hit hard on the back, knocking him forward a yard or so. He turned around to see the thug, with a frown on his face, pointing some dirt cheap blaster at him. Tek busted out into laughter. He knew that gun had no hope of penetrating Katarn Armor. Tek walked over to there table, every eye on him now. “You want to try that again, son?” He said. The thug tried instantly to land a kick on him. Tek caught it easily, then flipped him backwards. Then all three jumped him. It took one minute and they were piled up on the table squealing in pain. Everyone returned to there drink’s. The someone yelled “There he goes! Hey bounty hunter, there he goes!” and pointed toward the door. Tek turned, and saw a human run out the door. Tek ran after him in a full blown sprint. Tek chased him for a few blocks, then he climbed down into a manhole. Tek stopped in front of it. “Oh great. This job just keeps getting more interesting.” Than he began to go after him.
In the hole, Tek could see nothing. He switched thermal vision back on. Once again, his sight was restored. “Now, why would he go down here? This is becoming a real pain.” He thought to himself. “1,500,000 credits? Is it worth it? Ah, I know I’m going to regret this.” Tek began the long passage of which he had hoped, not to travel. There have been story’s, of sub-human species that live in the gloomy labyrinth of Coruscant’s underworld. Along with giant creatures, that even the force cant stop.
About an hour later, Tek was beginning to become bored. “I wonder if he died? That would make this absolutely pointless…” As he continued, he began to hear a rushing sound. “Is that, water? I am in a sewage pipe after all.” He came to a point in the tunnel which seemed to go down hill a little. He looked to his right (where the noise had come from) into a large sewage container. Tek stepped over to the edge, and stared down into a black hole filled with gloomy looking water. The cylinder seem to have another hole (like the one he was standing in) on the wall across from him. He noticed a slight movement…could it be? Then, out of nowhere someone plummeted down into the abyss. “He must be absolutely out of his mind…?!?!” Tek thought to himself. “Ughhhh, I’m going to regret this…here we go!” Tek jumped, and fell for what seemed to be minutes. When he finally surfaced, after nearly drowning, he saw Ulrak climb back up into yet another sewage pipe. Tek proceeded after him, sure he would catch up now. Then, after rounding a corner he lost sight of him. He heard a blood curdling howl. “What could that be? The stories of the things that live down here are no more than myths.” Tek felt a chill go down his spine. It was them…the Cthons.
Tek began running farther into the tunnel, not the brightest of ideas, but still the best he had. He knew the Cthons had technology that could defy even light sabers. He looked over his shoulder to see shadows getting closer. Guns were of no use here, even if there nets weren’t in front of them. “Ah Firefek! I cant even see them… I doubt Ulrak survived this. If I escape, I’m leaving this fierfeking planet and never coming back.” The Mandolorian ran, and ran cursing the creatures that he was fleeing from. Suddenly, he tripped over a rock or something. He instantly got up, but was tackled by six or seven Cthons. He tried his best to fight them off, it did no good. Even a Mandolorian couldn’t fight those numbers. He felt them gnawing on his limbs. There sharp as glass teeth pierced his skin sending shrieks of pain through his body. His bodysuit started tearing, blood and saliva sinking in. He thought for sure it was his time. Then he saw a light…
Tek awoke in a dark room, from the roof, he was hung by a rusty chain. He came to senses moments later. He easily snapped his restraints down, then apart. “Amateurs…” He thought to himself. He walked half asleep down a narrow hallway. He heard noises ahead. Squeals, and gnawing of bone. Tek wanted revenge on them, and he wanted it now. He crept down the passage, hiding in the shadows. He came to the entrance of a room. There sat the seven Cthons who has attacked him back in the tunnel. One seemed to be fairly close to the doorway. Tek pressed a button, and readied his flamethrower. He stopped, and noticed a small can of what look like fuel. He had and idea. He set his blaster for silence. He fired a small whole in it. The leaking sound startled the Cthons. The howled. Then Tek lit the fuel, and left.
After a long ascent, he returned to the surface. He quickly phoned Flax.
“Flax, we need to meet now.”
“Calm down son, what is it?”
“It’s about Ulrak, and it’s urgent.”
“Ok, ok. Come to my place. Here’s the location.”
When Tek arrived at Flax’s apartment, he noted to guards station by the door. “Now why on earth would he need guards? There’s isn’t anyone here besides me…” Tek entered.
“Tek, sit down my boy. Have a drink.”
“First, I’m not a boy. Second, I’ll pass, but thank you anyway.”
“So, what was it you needed to talk about?”
“Oh yeah, that. Well I tracked Ulrak into the sewage tunnels.”
“That far down? You don’t say. What happened?”
“After searching for an hour or so, I was ambushed by Cthons. They are cannibal sub-humans that crawl around down there. I would assume that he is dead. However, I did not find his body. I am more than 50 percent sure he is dead. So, with saying that I resign from this job. Thank you and goodbye.”
“Oh no you don’t just escape like that. At this point, Tek, you are as much danger to the Black Sun as Ulrak is. Who knows if you found the info he was carrying? It doesn’t matter, I was going to kill you even if you did return with Ulrak. Guards! Guards! Take him! Wait a minute. Where are they now?”
Flax ran to the door to find his guards laying on the ground, heads severed from there neck’s. In front of them stood a black hooded figure. He pulled of his hood, revealing a red and black tattooed face. Horns came out of the top of his head. His eyes red as the Coruscant sunset. He stepped in the room as Tek and Flax stepped back. He stuck his hand in his robe, and removed a handle of some sort. A button was pressed as a red blade of light pierced the air. He got closer, and closer. He raised the light saber above his head. He swung as the final words came out of Tek’s mouth.