Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Interlude - The Arms Dealer

Various beings drifted to and fro in front of the weapons shop on the Vaynai Promenade. Waves of oddly shaped aliens, punctuated by a scattering of humans, rolled past the shield reinforced glow of the front window displays, themselves laden with a deadly array of blasters, rifles, and armors. A sharp mixture of odors drifted through the entryway, causing the Weequay running the shop to subconciously wrinkle his nose as the smell of an odd breathing gas or particularly strange body chemistry wafted by.

Through this unbroken sea of bodies passed a strange eddie. At least, it would have been strange had not the observer been able to easily discern the large cat-like head of a Togorian towering above the crowd at the center of the disturbance. While many passed near the big felinoid, most jostled against the surrounding crowd to provide the brute with an unhindered walking space. If the wide array of weaponry he was carrying didn't advertise danger to the passersby, most shied away at the sight of the huge fangs displayed through his slightly parted lips.

Ducking a little to clear the frame, the Togorian strode into the shop, his verdant green eyes scanning across the requisite Twi’lek sales girls and their few patrons automatically. Sensing no threat, he stepped up to the proprietor, expertly unslinging a heavy blaster rifle and placing it on the dura-glass counter firmly enough that the supports groaned in protest for a moment.

“Err, yes, I am Lurzen, and that’s a fine, if worn, rifle you have there, umm, sir. Can I help you?”

Mrrowl’s piercing gaze finally fully turned away from the shop and focused on Lurzen, who blanched a little at the intensity. “This has proven....too small....for my needs.” A toothy smile accompanied the statement. “I am looking for something, well, more.”

“Such things can be had, however my furry friend, they are terribly expensive, “ Lurzen paused with a slick grin, assessing the look on the big cat’s face, “so hard to find.”

Wordlessly, Mrrowl produced a credit chip, sliding it across the counter to the shopkeep, who dropped it into a reader.

Lurzen checked the screen, then raised an eyebrow and shrugged as he assessed the ripple of muscles under the felinoid’s glistening gray pelt. “Well, this rifle is awfully large as it is. Though I do suppose someone of your stature could have a few more options. Of course, we don’t, well, officially sell some of these things, but perhaps you’d like to visit our VIP room?”

At the Togorian’s smirk, Lurzen gestured to a nearby sales girl, who replaced him behind the main counter. With a nod towards the back of the shop, Lurzen stepped to a sealed metal door, mindlessly keying in a complex code with a disregard bred from frequent repetition. Picking up his rifle and retrieving his credit chip from the reader, Mrrowl gave the store a last cursory scan and followed the Weequay into the back of the shop.


Passing through the doorway, a dimly lit room full of large crates met Mrrowl’s eyes. Black stencils in various character sets advertised explosives, grenades, missiles, just about anything one might need to wage a medium sized war on a backwater world.

Smiling generously, Lurzen wrote a few figures on a scrap of flimsy. “Rorrvar, “ he called out, “I need you to fetch me a special item for our customer here.”

A Wookie with a tan colored pelt emerged from an aisle between the crates, gave a whuff of acknowledgment, and took the flimsy from Lurzen. Scanning it a moment, the large, furred creature nodded, howled something, and then disappeared around a corner, head turning back and forth as if looking for something.

“I have something very special for you my big friend, “ Lurzen said to the large felinoid, “it fell off of a transport that was leaving Sorosuub, and I’m sure nobody will miss it. I hear they sometimes mount these on armored speeders, but I’m thinking you may just be able to handle it.”

Mrrowl’s face broke out into a toothy smile as the Wookie staggered up with a very large case bearing SoroSuub markings. The smile turned into a yawning evil grin as the case latches were popped, revealing a six foot-long large bore Heavy Blaster Cannon.

“The SoroSuub Sur-Kill XR-4 Heavy Blaster Cannon.” Lurzen said with a flourish of his hands. “If the XR-4 can’t handle it, you’d better be a fast runner or have an airstrike on stand by”

With a soft grunt of effort, the Togorian hefted the huge weapon, expertly sweeping it back and forth a few times to get a feel for the weight and handling. Lurzen knew immediately that he had a sale and settled on an obscene number.

“How much?”

“For you, my fine friend, 8,000 credits.”

Lurzen winced as the cat’s delighted smile turned into something far more hungry looking.

“I’ll make you a deal little Weequay, “ Mrrowl rasped, staring intently at him, “12,000 for this, and you’ll throw in a Class 4 Personal Shield, delivered to my ship. I tried to blow up an enemy recently and was impressed at how his little gadget deflected the grenade. Of course, the thermal detonator he dropped on his foot took care of the problem. Helluva mess to clean up, though.” An evil chuckle followed the pronouncement before Mrrowl’s face settled into the serene, deadly look of a predator stalking prey through the forest.

Running some figures through his head, Lurzen concluded that there was still quite a bit of profit in the offer, and nodded quickly. Even with Rorrvar nearby, the presence of this felinoid was starting to make him nervous.

“That’s acceptable. I...I’ll arrange delivery of the crate to your ship.” the shopkeeper stuttered, letting out a relieved sigh when the cat’s face reverted to a contented look.

Mrrowl gave Lurzen their landing pad number and ship identificatin as he swiped the credit chip for half of the funds. “Half on delivery of course little one, your kind’s treachery and deceit has not left me very trusting or tolerant of failure. I’ll expect delivery by the end of the day, or I’ll be back.”

Turning his back on the nodding, and now perspiring, arms dealer, Mrrowl stalked from the shop, barely noticing the small personal space afforded him on the crowded promenade.

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