SWD6: Once Upon A Wretched Hive

Strikeforce Enteague Interlude

Contacts in the Dark Episode 2

Once Upon A Wretched Hive

Previously, three rebel agents from the Cratertown rebel cell on Ord Mantell, Mark Grog, Steven Waverider and Roland Ritcher  headed out on a mission with Strikeforce Enteague commander Drew Greyhelm from Enteague Minor. Their mission was to stop an Imperial Ubiqtorate team from transmitting the locations of their bases and outpost to the Empire.

Contacts in the Dark title

Contacts in the Dark title

Streets of Mos Eisley

Twin suns greet them as they revert back to realspace. Drew’s rebel contact “Wormie”  obtains permission to from Mos Eisley Spaceport to land at Docking Bay 94. As Drew and Wormie pay the port officer, the Ord Mantell trio catch a glimpse of a Twi’lek grinning madly at them from the landing bay entrance. They blink and the Twi’lek vanished like a ghost.

Mark, Steven, Roland, Wormie and Drew venture into the hot bustling streets of Mos Eisley.

Mos Eisley Spaceport

Mos Eisley Spaceport, image from Star Wars: A New Hope (Lucasfilm, 1977)

Soon, they were intercepted by a bulky multi-nostrilled being. He said, “I am Pote Snitkin. I have a powerful weapon for sale!” He produces a monster of a energy weapon from under his cloak. “A prototype Iron Golem blaster cannon. Portable and powerful as a medium blaster cannon! Five thousand is all I want.”

Wormie whispers, “This Skrilling will try to sell you anything. I don’t think you should trust him.” But the Ord Mantell rebels are very much interested. As they haggle over price, Steven sneaks away with the large blaster. When Pote realises that the Iron Golem was missing, the three rebels were long gone.

Shortly after, Drew tells them, “You boys have a look around. I’m gonna book us a room at the Inn. Wormie, you’re with me. I’ll call by comlink once we’re in. Have fun now.”

A Stroll to the Cantina

And so the Ord Mantell rebels decide to visit the local cantina.

En route, four Imperial sandtroopers on patrol surround them in the street. It is already Second Twilight. The lead trooper who is wearing an orange pauldron says, “We had an anonymous tip about three humans matching your description who are rebel sympathisers. Let us check you out, and if we find nothing, we let you go.”

Of course, they find the Iron Golem on Steven and want to confiscate it. So the trio blast the four troops and leave them in a smoking pile in an alley.

When night falls their keen sense discover a shadow following them. They set up an ambush and confront their tail. It is a human with a blaster pistol on his hip. He seem flustered and stammer, “I’m sorry for alarming you. You look familiar. Have we met before, perhaps on Kabal or Svivren?”

When it seems like there is no threat, the man’s insecurity turns to resolve. He draws his blaster. He sustains multiple blaster ships from the rebels before he could do so. Roland steps forward and takes the man’s datapad from his smoking and very dead body. He discovers that there is a text on its screen.

#2747 THREE SPACERS FROM THE SHIP AT DB94 ARE SUSPECTED REBELS.

They continue on to the cantina.

Approaching Chalmun's Cantina

Approaching Chalmun’s Cantina, image from Star Wars: A New Hope (Lucasfilm, 1977)

Painting the Town Dead

At Chalmun’s Cantina, they have some fun. Roland plays sabacc with some locals: a grumpy man named Beeyon Nace, who tells the horned Devaronian male named Oxbel to “Shut up and play, you Devish drunk.” Also, Beeyon refers to the insectoid Kibnon female Sinthia Pulchatt as “the prettiest lady at the table.”

The young gambler loses all his money.

Mark is challenged by the lovely Armanda Durkin and her lanky Ho’Din companion Thrung Alewune to lumguzzling, the drinking game.

The young bounty hunter loses his consciousness.

Inside Chalmun's Cantina

Inside Chalmun’s Cantina, image from Star Wars: A New Hope (Lucasfilm, 1977)

Alone by the side, Steven is confronted by the outlaw Selbax Dansoot, the brother of an adversary he defeated some time ago. He spits, “The tip was correct. My brother’s murderers are here.”

“What?” Steven interjects. “I left your brother stunned, not killed.”

“When he woke up from your stun blast, he stood up quickly and accidentally pulled down the pants of a passing Rodian. The Rodian tripped and fell into an angry Weequay. The Weequay lashed out with his force pike at a Sljee bounty hunter. As you may know, Sljees are gelatinous, amoeba-like blobs and are more or less blind. He coiled his tentacle around his blaster rifle trigger and fired randomly at his unseen attacker. A stray shot damaged the repulsors of a passing speeder truck, driven by an Aqualish. The truck, it turns out, bore dozens of crates of thermal detonators.

“The truck crashed, and the ensuing explosion vaporised half the building, the truck, the Aqualish, the Sljee, the Weequay, the Rodian, and my brother! As far as I am concerned, your stun blast started the entire thing. I challenge you to a duel.

Steven and Selbax convene in the street outside the cantina, surrounded by a half-bloodthirsty and half-drunk crowd. Facing off in the cold desert air, they eye each other with their hands prepared to draw the blasters at their hips. There is a blur of motion. Apparently, Steven is much faster than Selbax. The armoured outlaw falls with a gaping hole in his chest.

A Datapad in the Night

As the crowd disperses, Drew calls them by comlink. “Drew to Dewback crew. I’ve got you Room 5 at the Mos Eisley Inn, with air-conditioning and humidifier. Get some sleep. Wormie and I are gonna have a talk with Hammerhead tonight. We will be in Room 6 later tonight.”

It is getting late and they are feeling quite weary from the going-ons of the day. To add, Mark is somewhat sloshed, very much plastered and highly inebriated from his lumguzzling.

At the Mos Eisley Inn, they realise that the door to Room 6 is open. When they peek in, a little Jawa scampers out of the darkened room in fear, probably trying to steal Drew’s belonging. The light from the active screen of a datapad on a table grabs their attention.

They pick it up and read the screen:

COMM LIST

  • 0034 MOS EISLEY STORMTROOPERS
  • 2747 TATOOINE UBIQTORATE AGENT
  • 3318 SELBAX DANSOOT, OUTLAW
  • 5005 ZUTTON, BOUNTY HUNTER
  • DF TO DG: ENSURE THE THREE DO NOT SURVIVE

DG? Drew Greyhelm? Did Drew tip off all the hostiles they encountered that evening? Who is DF? They decide to wait until morning to confront Drew.

The next morning, Mark, Steven and Roland meet up with Drew, Wormie and Hammerhead.

Drew informs the Cratertown trio that Hammerhead, who is really Momaw Nadon of Ithor, told Wormie and him that a local drunk stumbled across the Ubiqtorate encampment two days earlier. The drunk was the Devaronian known as Labria, and so far has refused to divulge the information to others. Momaw is convinced that credits would loosen Labria’s tongue.

Wormie tells them that Labria has agreed to a meeting at Jabba’s town house which is presently empty as the great crime lord Jabba the Hutt is at his palace in the desert.

Treachery on Tatooine

As the six of them proceed to the town house, the Cratertown agents accuse Drew of being an Imperial agent. Drew assures them that he is no spy. However, the trio is not dissuaded easily. They produce the datapad as evidence. Drew claims it is not his. The situation escalates to the point where Mark, Steven, Roland and Drew each has their hand on their blaster.

Mos Eisley streets

Mos Eisley streets, image from The Mandalorian, “The Gunslinger”. (Lucasfilm, 2019)

Then, Wormie calmly tells them that a Snivvian is following them in the streets, and recommends they continue arguing to hold their shadow’s attention. Then Wormie detaches himself from the Rebels, sneaks around the Snivvian, and surprises him, pinning him to the ground.

They surround the immobilised Snivvian.

It turns out that the Snivvian, “Snaggletooth” Zutton, is only hunting Thalassian slavers, but someone had tipped him off to the rebels being Thalassians. He now sees that the team are not Thalassians nor are they slavers. Besides that he and Momaw Nadon knows each other.

“Why were you following us?” asked Wormie.

“It was a stupid Twi’lek. He grinned all the time. He paid me to plant a datapad in your room so these three would be able to find it before you got back last night.”

The Cratertown rebels begin to apologise to Drew, but Drew is focused on Snaggletooth, asking for the Twi’lek’s description.

“Like a normal Twi’lek, hairless head with head tails, black shirt and pants and a padded armour jacket. The only thing was that he never stopped grinning from ear to ear.”

Drew looks up. “Dik Foranay! The assassin. Sorry, boys. This is my fight. My strikeforce encountered him once before on Liesson, and now here on Tatooine. Quite a troublemaker that one. Almost killed my people in a trap. I guess he was trying to incriminate me. How did he know I was on Tatooine? Where is he now?”

“I don’t know,” said Snaggletooth. “But he paid me in Docking Bay 87.”

Hostage at the Town House

The rebels accompanied by Momaw rushed to Docking Bay 87 and burst into an empty bay. The bay manager, an Ishi Tib, tells them, “If you’re looking for that grinning Twi’lek fellow, he’s gone. He took off not fifteen minutes ago.”

Irritated and angry, the team head for Jabba’s town house.

The door opens easily, revealing in the foyer within that a Nimbanel in official work uniform has a Devaronian tied to a chair. The Nimbanel, who also has a blaster pistol shoved at Labria’s temple, says, “I know you need this Devish drunk. Give me eight thousand now or Labria will have no head.”

Labria aka Kardue'sai'Malloc

Labria aka Kardue’sai’Malloc, image from Star Wars: A New Hope (Lucasfilm, 1977)

The Cratertown trio look at each other for a moment, then let loose a stream of energy bolts into the Nimbanel, who fail to see it coming. Labria, still tied to the chair, wails, “Aw, no! This was my plan! He shouldn’t have been shot!”

The rebels realise that Labria and the Nimbanel planned to swindle cash from them and split it between them.

The Cratertown rebels surround Labria, weapons smoking and pressed against him ominously. Steven growls threateningly, “Where is that encampment.”

“In the Jundland Wastes! Exactly at the halfway point between Mos Eisley and Motesta.”

“Thank you,” said Roland politely as they all holstered their blasters. Then, they poured a big bottle of Corellian beer over him, soaking him thoroughly. Finally, they scrawl the words GREEDY FELLA on his back and leave him naked and still tied up in the chair on the busy street right in front of Jabba’s town house.

Thanking Momaw, they five rebels prepare to head out into the desert…

To be continued

Notes.

  • So many cameos from A New Hope (and one from Return of the Jedi) in the session.
Posted in Role Playing Games, RPG Actual Play, RPG Campaigns, Star Wars, SWD6: Enteague Chronicles and tagged , , , , , , .

Khairul Hisham J. is a tabletop RPG artist, writer, proofreader, translator, teacher, grad student and learner-in-general.

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