Intro - J'nali and the Amazing Sprint-o-Death

This was definetely your run of the mill dark watering hole. None of the goings on inside this dank place were fit to carry over into Rust Alley proper so they made sure there was a ceiling. A very low, oppressive ceiling. The patrons inside seemed to think the lower the ceiling, the more secret their whispered conversations would be. They also seemed to have something against windows or lighting in general. J’nali hadn’t any problems navigating the dark room, but she’d been here far too many times and it wasn’t the kind of place that underwent frequent changes to the layout. Unless you counted the occasional upturned table or thrown chair or bleeding body drug prone through the path of least resistance on it’s way out the back door to who knew where.

Several of those lumbering around were bent over to accommodate their height. That was partly why J’nali chose this meeting place. Tall aliens bent low would be at a disadvantage. It always seemed to be the tall aliens that she had problems with. Being short certainly came in handy. Except when she was running from someone. J’nali swirled the glass of terrible whiskey in front of her and made a face. She seemed to be running from people with alarming frequency these days. Ah well, it was good exercise and staying alive was definitely good for her health.

There was a commotion near the front entrance and J’nali heard her name spoken by a familiar voice. It wasn’t a pleasant voice or one she wanted to hear just now, not while her financial portfolio was in the red and her credit chits near extinct. She kept promising herself she’d start setting aside some funds, just as soon as she finished the next job. That was several years ago. To be fair, she had purchased a data pad that guaranteed her 10,000 credits in profit within six months if she just followed a carefully protected secret to success that was being shared with her and only a few other diligent business contacts. Eh, she knew it was too good to be true. Living one job to the next was getting decidedly distasteful and she could do without the constant growling of her stomach.

The bartender looked in her direction and pointed her out to the owner of that unpleasant voice and she knew she was wearing out her welcome fast. She jumped up and took a few steps towards the front door then thought better of that route and darted for the back door, but not before taking a moment to toss the last of her terrible whiskey down her throat. She wasn’t sure when she’d be able to afford another and she hated wasting a drink.

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Ten minutes later and J’nali’s legs were still pumping and churning as she fled her pursuers; darting up and down alleys to try and lose them. These sort of pursuits normally came to an end before she even got her heart rate up, but these fellows seemed to be quite dedicated to sharing a few words with her. The kind of words where they held a stout cudgel and she tried to explain herself through missing teeth or worse. Those were her least favorite kind of words.

She ducked through another doorway and went crashing through a shop of woven baskets, knocking tables over in her wake. Shame really, they were some lovely pieces of textile showmanship. She wasn’t much for planning ahead, but she’d always had a plan B. She didn’t tend to imagine Plan B was particularly prosperous or suited for long term adoption, but Plan B was starting to look pretty good right about now. She was trying to recall just where the last logs had indicated Plan B was docked. She was also trying not to get shot in the back. Plan B wouldn’t do her much good if she got herself shot in the back.

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Five minutes later a winded J’nali careened around a corner at full speed, clutching a stitch in her side but knowing better than to stop to catch her breath. The shouts and crashes behind her told her just how much trouble she was looking at if she stopped to catch her breath. Plan B should be just ahead. God she hoped Plan B was just ahead.

J’nali had her fair share of problems. She had a list of vices longer than most and a history of indulging those vices to match. That probably played into her current predicament. She gambled too much, she drank too much, she took things before they belonged to her and sold them before their previous owner knew they were missing. She’d lie, cheat and steal before she even crawled out of bed in the morning and she didn’t always know whose bed it was. She was vain and she pampered that vanity and used her feminine charms to swindle her way from one opportunity to the next. But there was nothing attractive or charming about the woman who came running for her life down the hangar towards Joh, Crystal, Safira, Arme and ….. a cat? That was a cat. A really big cat. Huh. She’d have to backburner that for another time.

Joh and Safira had their blasters pointed at her and she vaguely felt this Plan B might end the same as she was running from. If she got shot in the face when she was this close to Plan B … well there wasn’t much for it. She could kick herself later if it didn’t work out. There was no Plan C.

“We gotta go, Joh!” J’nali shouted with her hands waving frantically above her head the whole time, running full out with pursuit hot on her tale. “Let’s go, Joh! Stop standing around and get this ship in the air!” She’d ran right past the newly assembled crew and straight up the ramp to the Bantha.

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