A Year Without the Sun

Chapter 2: The Side Trip

Trixy Stardust didn’t have much reason to be on Nar Shaddaa. Her work, such as it was these days, her “retirement” notwithstanding, was on Balmorra at the moment. Her old life had brought her here frequently, but she had never taken to it.

Nar Shaddaa was a place with a lot on offer but nothing Trixy wanted to buy. And she wasn’t in the business of selling. Never had been, contrary to the claims of unsettled criminal warrants bearing her name in more than one system. She had always liked to think of herself as a facilitator. She was a greaser of gears and palms, not a supplier of merchandise.  It was Brisso who had brought them into Hutt Space. He had more or less insisted on a side trip to Trixy’s least favorite moon to check on some business of his own. Family business. He didn’t confide much and she didn’t really want to know, truth be told. Brisso was the strong silent type and that suited Trixy fine. Especially the silent part. But he made it clear that the matter on Nar Shaddaa was a priority to him. He said it would only take a day, maybe two, and they could set course for Balmorra straight away when he was finished. One or two days; she owed the guy that much. He had been loyal–so far–and helped her out of a scrape she hadn’t meant to get into on Taris. He’d been a whole lot of help, actually. She still wasn’t sure what he was getting from their arrangement, aside from the obvious payment. It felt to Trixy like Brisso’s motivation ran deeper than credits. Maybe he wanted to pull the trigger on their shared enemy himself, but that was a privilege Trixy had no intention of surrendering to her mercenary associate.


She left Brisso in the spaceport and caught a taxi to the Red Light Sector in search of an untouristy watering hole. If they were going to be here for two days, she wasn’t going to spend every minute of it on the ship. She chose a seedy part of the city to avoid familiar faces; the last thing she wanted now was to dredge anything up or run into old acquaintances. She alighted from the speeder on a corner indistinguishable from every other intersection in the sector. Steam rose from manholes and the smell of garbage and carababba tabac competed for dominance in the still air.  After looking up a few adjacent alleys for a discreet place to have a drink, Trixy decided upon a particularly repugnant cantina unironically named the Liar’s Moon. At least she assumed the name wasn’t intended ironically–patrons of the disreputable sinkhole would be unlikely get the joke–and if they did, they would probably consider it a compliment. Certainly she would not risk a chance run-in here.

Trixy stepped passed the Trandoshan bouncer and into the dank bar. She scanned the unsavory congregation of customers and staff, and looked around the room, searching for a quiet booth. She saw a small vacant table against the far wall, no doubt unoccupied due to its proximity to an overflowing busser’s station nearly toppling over with dirty plates and glasses half-filled with murky swill. Good enough. As she started toward it, a familiar face came into focus through the smoky air. Blood of the Queen! So much for anonymity, she laughed to herself.  Not three meters away was a man she knew. But not from her spacer days, from much more recently. Korr something-or-other, she believed his name was. The fellow who spent a lot of time hating Jedi, a fact that was notable since he himself was a Jedi Master.

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