Tales of the Jedi

Episode 52 – 52 Pick-Up

52 Pick-Up

[NOTE: This episode takes place before the events of TotJ #1] We open with Vox Lanna in a no limit, heads-up game of Pazzak playing against a very confident looking Cathar. Flashback 2 weeks earlier, we zoom in on a cold planet where the Daughters of the Phade are conducting a religious sermon. After receiving the sacrament, Soolin Voss pulls Vox aside and tells her of her plan to enter and win the Galaxy Series of Pazaak so they can give the winnings to The First. Switching to Nar Shadda, we see Jo and Rand Torent discussing a recent cut on her face. They are interrupted by The Adversary and two Pirate Guild members arriving; he tells Jo that he would ensure that her wound would not heal properly so she could stay beautiful like this forever. He hires them to kill Rorbirr Nhan, the Pirate King and tells them that two girls will be contacting him with another contract which will allow them to get close to their target. After the deal is made, The Adversary kills the two pirates so no one can connect him with the operation. At The Gold Bar Bar, we see Soolin and Vox check their weapons and walk past Arten on the way to meet Rand and Jo. Soolin may be a skilled assassin, but during the discussion the more experienced Outriders can tell that she is new to both missions such as the one for which she is hiring them (her intel is a year old) and they easily trick her into paying everything up front since that’s “standard”. A bunch of gangers called The Ion Burners burst into the bar to celebrate one of them getting out of prison. Arten gets pulled into a barroom brawl and is dog-piled; Vox had snuck into a restroom to assemble the parts of a pistol and manages to scare off the gangers. She hires Arten for a percentage of the back-end take. First they steal a pair of hi-tech contact lenses from Czerka Corp. which will broadcast whatever the viewer sees to a remote computer (also allowing for typed words to appear in a heads-up display for the wearer). The facility was not fully automated as it was when Soolin obtained security badges to let the team pass so it’s a fight to get the lenses. Later they meet at port 84 and take The Nomad to Coruscant. In lower city, they negotiate with “Crazy” Detdy to forge passes to the Galaxy Series of Pazaak; no one would cross Bogga in Hutt space so the Toydarian is the only one who can do it but he asks the group to first collect the credits owed to him by a swoop gang known as The Slithers. They find the gang hanging up digital posters promoting Supreme Chancellor Didrona Diath and Senator Bendak Crazell. No one dies, but the gang is easily intimidated after a few broken bones. Detdy tries to go back on the deal by calling the cops to which Rand states, “you call the police and we’ll call the morgue – we’ll see who gets here first.” During the trip back to Hutt space, Arten coaches Vox on how to look more natural playing when it’s time for Soolin to tell her which cards to play. Dressed to the nines, the group enters the Casino where a Dug named Sebakus announces Bogga, The Great and Well-Proportioned. The Pirate King gives Bogga a gift of Carnovian eel-pups, a delicacy. Vox plays and, with Soolin’s help, advances to the final round. Unable to use the eye drops, the lenses dry out and she’s forced to pay the last hand on her own – and wins! However, as she’s gathering up the chips, one of the lenses pops out and the Pirate King demands the Right of Vengeance from the Hutt. Bogga The Merciful One grants it, knowing Vox will be tortured for 4 days before being killed. [Rand’s plan to get in front of Rorbirr later is to turn Soolin over (willing or otherwise) as the other cheater]

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