Thirteen Parsecs to Kessel: A Star Wars Story
"I don't trade in spice," BoShek said with more vitriol in his voice than he expected. His hands clenched into fists of their own accord, and he couldn't help the angry sneer that twisted at his mouth.
"I don't want spice." The woman sitting across from him insisted, placatingly. The woman looking to hire him, Maru Nadrinakar, was holding her hands out, palms towards him, and leaned back a little in her chair.
BoShek took a moment to glance around them, at the dozens of other tables in the House Thul Cantina. He didn't spend a lot of time looking, but he did find at least one pair of eyes lingering on his conversation.
Which wasn't surprising. The words Kessel and Spice attracted a lot of attention.
"This is a delivery job. I just need to get a small package to someone there." The woman said as she laid a small wooden box on the table. "Although...."
"Depending on what he says, we could be taking one more passenger."
"So you want to hire me to make the Kessel run so that you can give something to some poor fool working the spice mines? You could buy your own ship for what I'm going to charge you." BoShek said, warily.
"I figured," Miru replied with a shrug. But after she spoke, she leaned forward, and her voice dropped to a near whisper. "Also, we have to avoid any, uh, Imperial entanglements."
"Running from the law?" BoShek asked, more amused than concerned.
"I'm former Corellian resistance. Pretty sure I made a name for myself on an abandoned Geonosian colony a few years ago. Price isn't an issue, as long as you're willing to take it in barter." She smiled as she spoke, a charming smile that immediately made BoShek suspicious.
The pretty ones are always trouble.
"Barter?" BoShek asked, leaning forward.
"Yeah. You should be able to sell it for quite a bit more than you'd get from this job in credits." Miru replied, sliding the wooden box towards him.
BoShek grinned but didn't open the box yet. Instead, he rested his hand on top. "You know what I like about credits? Imperial blockades don't confiscate credits."
"Which means what I'm offering needs to be quite a bit more valuable," Miru replied. "I know how this works. It isn't my first pod race."
Now genuinely curious, BoShek opened the lid of the wooden box. Inside, cushioned in purple velvet, lay a small cylindrical tube with ornate caps on each side.
"Old Jedi scroll. It's an old manual on swordplay with a lightsaber. At least fifteen thousand years old." Miru explained. "It's the kind of thing collectors pay a hefty premium for."
"It's also the kind of thing the Empire would arrest me on sight over." BoShek retorted, but he didn't push the box away. "Any hope of you telling me what you're delivering?"
BoShek smiled as sweetly as he could. He got nothing but a dismissive scoff and a raised eyebrow.
BoShek mumbled to himself "I've got a bad feeling about this." He then held out his hand to Miru and said, "I'll take the job. Meet me at docking bay 44, in two hours. Try to travel light, and don't be late. If you are, I'm going to assume some Imperial trouble found you, and won't look back."