Before ~ Strictly Business ~, Short Story, Leila /Jango Series 1, completed 8/6

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  1. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    Title: Strictly Business
    Author: MsLanna
    Timeframe: about 34 BBY
    Characters: Jango Fett, Leila Durmon
    Genre: Action?
    Keywords: Bounty Hunter, Assassin, Seedy Side
    Summary: Leila Durmon, assassin specialises on weaponless murder, is hired to rescue the Daughter of Lord Graden. But he misapplied some details of the mission, starting with her having to cooperate with Jango Fett.
    Notes: No romance, I promise.:p
    First of a series.
    Story Number Two: Misconception
    Story Number Three: ... and Loyalty

    [image=http://www.geocities.com/wuehlkuschler/Pics/StrictlyCover.jpg]




    Strictly Business

    The private audience chamber of Lord Graden was not an agreeable place to be, Leila decided the moment she set foot into it. The room was small, sterile and reeking of arrogance backed with money. The carpet was impeccable, despite it's light grey colour, the white walls shimmered in the subdued light and pictures of the most expensive galactic artist were displayed in modest intervals.

    The only furniture except a small side table displaying undoubtedly expensive liquors and crystal glasses was the huge desk of Lord Graden and the chair he reclined on. With his elbows on the armrests, he steepled his fingers and watched her approach closely over his fingertips.

    Leila tried not to show how annoying this was to her. After all, the man was about to offer her good money for a job and she would not be picky, not with a sum like that. Lord Graden might not have the best reputation, but the amount of money he was willing to spend for his daughter seemed to know no bounds.

    "Ah, Miss Durmon," he greeted her. His voice was carefully articulated, but Leila could not shake the impression of something oily or snakelike.

    "Lord Graden," she return the greeting. "You asked for me?"

    The room was screaming it at her, probably at every other visitor too: you have been cited here, and here you will stand and accept the verdict. The fact that she could not sit down reinforced that feeling. Leila decided to ignore it.

    "You might have heard that my daughter has gone missing," Graden finally supplied.

    "I have."

    "It seems that the kidnapper is rather keen on keeping her and has decided, among other things, to surround her only with women."

    "Unarmed women, I suppose?"

    "You suppose right," Lord Graden said, seeming unperturbed by her interruption. "Which is exactly where you come into play." He lowered his hands. "Additionally, he chose to hide on a planet where women are more than less the property of men. Not that I object to the system in general, but in this case it makes him the rightful owner of my daughter. To that I do object."

    "So I am to get her out." Leila stated flatly.

    "Correct. I have already organised a transport."

    "My ship-" she began.

    "Will be completely safe under my personal protection," Graden interrupted her. "Besides, I have heard that it is rather unfit to accommodate more than one person for a longer trip. You will get it back untouched when you collect your payment."

    The hard set of his mouth allowed no argument. Leila nodded, but the fact that she had to depend on somebody else for transport was not to her liking. "Is there anything else I should know?"

    He squinted at her. "My think tank has also come up with a little helper that will not leave you completely without options. If you would just follow my assistant when you leave."

    He waved his hand in a way that suggested she was actually leaving right now.

    Again Leila nodded. The way he treated her did not agree with her much, but she was willing to humour him. And all that cost him were the thirty thousand he was offering. While she followed his assistant, Leila already made plans for several approaches.

    * * *

    Not much later, but exactly at the preconcerted time, Lord Gra
  2. Lea-El Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2005
    star 4
    You piqued my interest. Could I get a pm when you post again?
  3. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    :eek:
    I got a reader!
    Let's just hope I don't lose you interest again. I'd feel so lonely.[face_worried]
    Of course, you can get pms. :D


    Leila was still grumbling when she entered Lord Graden's private landing pad. She had been forced though a complete beauty makeover, including hair dye, pedicure, hot wax and manicure. the last she understood. Though her nails did not look anything but orderly, they had actually been cut of short and then replaced by false nails. All except the one on her right little finger, which was bandaged as a precaution.

    It made her a little uneasy to be restricted like that. Her body was her weapon and she needed little else. At lest, the flight would not be long and the last finger nail would be applied soon enough. The probability that she's have to fight on her way was small. Of that, she had also been assured.

    Still she felt vulnerable in the new clothes. The white tunic and slacks were incredibly comfortable and would probably be little hindrance in a fight, but the skin-tight body glove she had to wear beneath it felt like too much intimacy for her taste. Apart from that is was also light grey and not of an imposing black.

    The hangar was spacious and simple in a way that probably had cost millions to achieve. In it's middle already sat a ship which certainly did not look as if it belonged into the impeccable surroundings. It resemble on of those old-fashioned door handles she had seen in Lord Gradens estate. Only that this was far from polished.

    The ramp was already lowered, but a soft hum told Leila that the engines were still running, ready for take-off within seconds. Seems, I'm in a hurry, she mused while she walked up the ramp.

    The inside of the ship was dimly lit, and she did not have to go far before she met with a complete set of Mandalorian armour. She raised a brow at that, wondering what had made Graden send her a ride like that.

    "Just leave it here and return," the filtered voice advised her.

    "Leave what?" Leila demanded. He could not mean her satchel which only held some clothes to change and beauty articles, of the existence of which she had mostly not even been aware. Neither could he refer to the special finger nail which had been custom made for her.

    "Oh, right," she procured a data card from a hidden pocket and gave it to him. "Lord Graden said, you'd need this. How long will the journey take, and where am I to put my things?"

    The gloved hand of the Mando closed over the datacard. "I work alone."

    "Great, so do I." Leila shot back. "So we will not get into each other's way. Good plan. Graden seems to think this funny, we obviously don't. Let's get to business. I'm Leila Durmon."

    She held out her hand, but the Mandalorian did not move.

    "Great. In which case I'll start the ship now. You can go and argue with Graden if you like." Dropping her satchel in the corridor, Leila shoved past the armoured figure. She did not get a step behind him though, before his other hand shot out and grabbed her arm.

    "So you can move." She arched a brow, stepping aside. "Good then, let's get moving."

    "Jango Fett," his filtered voice came as he went past her.

    "Enchante," Leila grumbled.

    The cockpit had enough space to harbour one, so the assassin had to content herself with standing in the blast door. She was not sure if it was programmed to try and close even when somebody stood inside it, but the continuous bumps annoyed her even more than the fact that Graden had already hired a bounty hunter. No, that's not it, she thought. But he should have told me. Information is everything.

    Jango Fett lifted his ship with practiced ease, and only a few moments later the ever similar patterns of hyperspace surrounded them.

    "Eight hours," the Mando announced and Leila straightened up in the doorway. That would be more than enough time to work out a plan, have something to eat and get her last fingernail attached. The rest of the time would probably be spend trying to avoid each other. Som/>
  4. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    Wow! A great start! Please put me on your PM list! :D

    =D=
  5. Lea-El Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2005
    star 4
    Loved the makeover, hope they don't start a war in that tiny ship.

    You still have my interest, can't wait for more.

    ~Lea
  6. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    Consider yourself added, Vadey.:D

    They wont, Lea-El. But it's more a cease-fire than real peace. I won't guarantee for anything once they don't have to work together anymore.[face_mischief]



    It was clear that the ship had not been designed for more than one person and a few caught bounty heads. The only place one could kind of sit, was the galley, but the tiny table allowed only one, two persons would have it cosy indeed and Leila had no intention of getting closer to Jango Fett than her job required. So she had taken her food standing half in the corridor.

    Avoiding each other was also, only an option if Leila decided to spend her time in the tract for prisoners. That she considered a disgrace and wondered how Graden believed that three could travel comfortably in this shoe box, when already two had problems. Maybe by having his daughter brought back like a prisoner he intended to teach her a lesson.

    At least, the food was good. Which was probably the result of the years of living alone and finally getting fed up with the diet of roasted meat and scrambled eggs. Also, the fact that the galley was just big enough to accommodate one and thus offered the bounty hunter some privacy might have been a reason. The longer the cooking took, the longer he stayed alone.

    Leila had given herself a tour of the vessel, which had taken about five minutes. And she had taken her time. Though a lot bigger than her Snakebite from the outside, the actual living quarters seemed tiny. Typically male, she thought. All engines and weapons, and just hope they never have to wine and dine somebody aboard.

    Sometime between entering the galley and coming out again, the Mandalorian warrior had turned into a dark-haired man in his thirties and a bluish-grey jumpsuit. Considering his shape, Leila wondered where on this ship he had stashed away his personal gym. It was easy to mistake most of him for his armour, which was a good way to lead others into underestimating him. Maybe in his case there was more balance to helmet and head than the derogatory saying about Mandos suggested.

    Her suspicion, that some of the living area was hidden, was confirmed when Fett led her into a small sitting room behind one of the wall panels. On the table laid a pad with a datacard of information about the social system and customs of Varavi Leila began to read, there was enough information to last her the rest of the journey.

    Though Leila had no idea where to the Mando had vanished, her inner clock was soon getting annoyingly close to their arrival time. High time to plan the operation and fix a schedule. Finally, she just got up to at least fix her nail before the mission began. She had just opened her satchel and taken the carefully wrapped box out of it, when Jango Fett returned.

    Wordlessly, he procured a small box of tools, sat down opposite of her and began to unwrap her little finger.

    "And what do you think you're doing now," the assassin demanded to know. She did not dare pull back her hand, though. The nail bed had been carved out rather deep at the manicure.

    "My job."

    His hands were hard and rough, but unlike those of the women giving her the manicure, they were also warm. Leila appreciated that.

    "And here I was, thinking they didn't give me directions with it because it was so easy." Indignantly she shook her head. "I don't think I like the way Lord Graden distributes information."

    This enticed the incredible reaction of a whole shrug from the bounty hunter. Wit a frustrated sigh, Leila went along. Watching the delicate work of applying the glue and setting the nail just right, she wondered how well she would have done with only one hand and no experience at all. Not too well, she decided.

    After Fett had sealed the nail and wrapped it up again tight, he handed her a document. "For your information."

    Leila examined the old-fashioned flimsy in which she was legally proclaimed to be the property of a certain Darren Warit. At least she now knew under which name F/>
  7. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    For someone who doesn't LIKE Boba Fett (or his daddy I presume!?) you sure do a great job of writing them! :D

    "So you already have time and place of the handover scheduled for me. How very considerate." She arched a brow. "And what in case I don't manage?"

    "That will be your problem," he replied. "I will come once to the appointed place only once. Graden would not have hired you if you couldn't manage."

    "You got that one right, Mando'a," Leila grumbled beat.

    And that was that. The necessity to talk obviously stopped right there for Fett. He took the document from her hands and left. Only the changing noise of the engines told Leila that they were about to land. The assassin was sure that things were bound to become easier without the arrogant bounty hunter. And she would keep an eye open for the place where his lack of communication would be a punishable crime.


    =D=
  8. Lauren_Solo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2007
    star 1
    Hi again Ms. Lanna!


    If you would just follow my assistant when you leave."

    He waved his hand in a way that suggested she was actually leaving right now.


    :mad: He's not very nice. Rich people. :rolleyes:


    With a sigh, Lord Graden stood up. if he ever was to take steps against that man, it would not be now.

    He better not try! Jango will kill him!


    She had been forced though a complete beauty makeover, including hair dye, pedicure, hot wax and manicure.

    Oooo, sounds lovely!


    but the skin-tight body glove she had to wear beneath it intimacy.

    Definately sounds sexy. [face_batting]


    "Jango Fett," his filtered voice came as he went past her.

    The strong, silent type. *melts*


    The rest of the time would probably be spend trying to avoid each other. Somehow Leila doubted the ship was big enough for that.

    LOL! Not big enough to do much of anything. [face_blush]


    Maybe by having his daughter brought back like a prisoner he intended to teach her a lesson.


    "My job."

    Definately a man of few words. [face_love]


    "The only woman whose safety and inviolacy I am paid to care for is Lord Graden's daughter."

    :mad: She'll warm him up. [face_worried] I hope.


    Could I have pm updates, please ms. Lanna? [face_batting]
  9. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    Read my sig, Vadey. I'm kinda schizo, I'm afaid.:p
    And I surely hope I'll do a good job with Jango, wouldn't want him angry with me.[face_worried]

    Welcome to the baords and the story, Lauren_Solo.
    So you like the idea of hot wax? I know why I never made it to a girly girl. *ouch*
    Yes, spread the Jango-love![face_love]
    But melt him? She might as well try to melt the North Pole.[face_plain]



    Varavi was a pretty unimportant planet in the Inner Rim, and it's main spaceport mirrored this situation exactly. It was a little bigger than necessary, unwilling to admit to its irrelevance, but in many places the plaster came off and the white walls turned dirty grey. Still there was not enough scum on the planet to fill the streets of the space port, let alone the cantinas and tap cafés. The windows of many were boarded up, and typically the more high-classed an establishment was, the better it was attended.


    After the successful transaction, Fett returned to the SlaveI. He had a whole week which he did not intend to spend waiting in the space port of Varavi. There was a choice of other bounties announced, a few of which were easily manageable in a week or less. Additionally, there was no clause in his contract with Lord Graden prohibiting side activities.

    It did not take him long to decide for a minor smuggler who had made the mistake of aggravating his crime lord. People would never learn, but this way, Jango Fett would never run out of work either.

    * * *

    Leila was not too happy with her current state of being owned. Even if she was a slave of 'higher' status the idea that a man, and many of his subordinates for that instance, had complete authority over her, irked her. She was already looking forward to ending this existence by terminating her current owner.

    Fett had acted his part well, if anybody could ever keep apart what was act and what not about that one. At the market he had led her directly to the major-domos of Mator Raad, the kidnapper of Lord Graden's daughter. Dom Alden was an elderly man with little hair and a leery grin, who took his time examining her skills as dancer. The tight black body glove suddenly made a lot more sense that before, and Leila felt tempted to kick him accidentally into his face more than once.

    But job was job, and when he took so many pains to look at her now, the assassin had the hope it was because he didn't get to see much of her afterwards. After Leila had been allowed to put back on her white tunic and slacks, the major-domo had led her away with much more body contact that necessary.

    At least, he proved to be a real chatter box if asked in the right way, and Leila knew half of her new realm before she ever set foot into it. She did not set to much stock into his relations of the hierarchy, though. He seemed awfully high up for a servant.

    The women's quarters turned out to be a huge two storey building including several huge bathing and common rooms as well as a court and a gym. Since Alden was allowed into the women's area, Leila deducted that he was most likely an eunuch, and considering his behaviour not by choice. Leila had to deny herself a smug grin.

    Two motherly women, the Dajas, grabbed her from the major-domos grip as soon as they came though the doors and complimented him out firmly and quickly. It seemed that Dom Alden was not a very welcome guest.

    "Don't you mind old Alden," the dark haired one said as they led Leila through a maze of corridors. "He can't hurt you, Mator Raad saw to that some time ago and had his most bothersome bit removed. Life is much better here since then, you will like it. I'm Daja Hanna, and this is Daja Kyra." She nodded towards her blonde companion.

    Kyra measured Leila with her eyes and shrugged. "I'd welcome you, but I think we have to many dancers already. Alden's fault, he just can't resist buying new ones." Kyra sighed exaggerated. "But until the Mator puts a stop to him- So what's you name, child."

    "Lana," Leila whispered, pretending to be proper/>
  10. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    Excellent update! I don't think you have to worry about Jango being upset with you! :p

    Loved the opening, it made the location itself a character, which is hard to do! And it worked!

    Varavi was a pretty unimportant planet in the Inner Rim, and it's main spaceport mirrored this situation exactly. It was a little bigger than necessary, unwilling to admit to its irrelevance, but in many places the plaster came off and the white walls turned dirty grey. Still there was not enough scum on the planet to fill the streets of the space port, let alone the cantinas and tap cafés. The windows of many were boarded up, and typically the more high-classed an establishment was, the better it was attended.


    After the successful transaction, Fett returned to the SlaveI. He had a whole week which he did not intend to spend waiting in the space port of Varavi. There was a choice of other bounties announced, a few of which were easily manageable in a week or less. Additionally, there was no clause in his contract with Lord Graden prohibiting side activities.

    It did not take him long to decide for a minor smuggler who had made the mistake of aggravating his crime lord. People would never learn, but this way, Jango Fett would never run out of work either
    .

    Loved it! =D=
  11. Lea-El Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2005
    star 4
    Had his most bothersome bit removed Interesting way of putting that.

    I worry Jango may get busy and not get back on time. That could make for a problem.

    Thanks for the pm sorry I took so long to read.@};-
  12. Lauren_Solo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2007
    star 1
    Additionally, there was no clause in his contract with Lord Graden prohibiting side activities.

    Would he have taken the job if he couldn't do 'side activities'? :p


    She was already looking forward to ending this existence by terminating her current owner.

    Yay! You go girl!


    Leila felt tempted to kick him accidentally into his face more than once.

    LOL! Get him! Smash that jerk!


    "He can't hurt you, Mator Raad saw to that some time ago and had his most bothersome bit removed.

    :eek: !! [face_thinking] That would solve a lot of our problems today. [face_devil]


    Leila decided she should try to get under her protection, even if that meant that Elida herself might be more reluctant to accept her.

    So much going on under the surface!


    "You are so good to me. I - I had no idea what to expect when I came her."

    Aw, a mush moment! [:D]
  13. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    He, Vadey, I used my home town as template for the space port. It's small but like preteding to be important.
    I love to live here, though.[face_love]

    *lol* Lea-El.
    I'm never sure how to phrase things with the ToS around. So I get creative. And as long as people understand me.
    Take however long you need. [:D]

    I don't think Jango likes to be tied down, especially on such a planet. He oesn't strike me as on happy with purchaseable women....
    [face_shame_on_you]No kicking the major-domos, that is bad manners.
    She might have cut of the bothersome part herself if that hadn't been done before, though. [face_mischief]
    Mush, oh dear. I'm not too good with that, I warn you.

    I would be happy if you could tell me what you think of that first part following. I added it because I knda like it, but I'm not sure it fits into the story.[face_blush]


    In a jungle on an out of the way planet in the Outer Rim a man is hunting. Silently he follows his prey, blaster ready in his hand. With practiced ease he had found the trail, followed it, sighted its originator. It is not his first hunt, not his first victim, even not the first time he killed for food.

    Seeking cover behind the underbrush, he takes careful aim. It is not that he is careless, but he is sure of his safety. On this lonely planet he does not watch his back, he is the hunter out here. A well-aimed shot fells the short-legged herbivore and the hunter is satisfied. Food for a day, work for some hours. His life has become lonely and uneventful out here, but at least, it is still a life.

    He had not really intended to end up here, but the embezzlement had seemed safe, a foolproof plan to sneak some of his employers money into his own pockets without anybody noticing. Only that Gradulla the Hutt had noticed, and he was not amused. The man knew that Gradulla would be amused once he had his pudgy hands on his ex-employer. He liked violence, especially applied to others while he could watch. In the Hutt's hands, his life would be nothing but pain, maybe even without enough space to wish for death.



    In a jungle on an out of the way planet in the Outer Rim a man is walking in silence. Not the absence of sound that amateurs create, but the impression of nothing disturbing the environment. Where he passes, the birds do not stop to sing, small rodents keep nibbling leaves on the ground and he widens his step not to crush them under his boots.

    He does not seek cover, his target has his hands in the body of a dead animal, he has his back turned. It is not that it is reckless, but it feels safe. There are only a handful of people that now of this planet, and it counts them all among friends.

    But one of those is now standing behind him, slowly raising his arm and aiming at his shoulder. A tiny dart flies from the device on the bounty hunters wrist. He does not count anybody among friends. The rule of no attachment is his own, regardless of what he may think of the order claiming it as its own.

    As the tiny dart hits his shoulder the hunted beats it away like a fly. He looks around, but sees nothing. Just a midget, painful and annoying, but not really dangerous. He rubs his shoulder. Only when he turns his eyes back to his work, he realizes that the knife has fallen from his other hand. When he tries to pick it up, his arms fail him. He wonders if there are midges poisonous enough to kill a man, then his world turns dark and topples over.


    In a vessel racing through hyperspace two men, one unconscious in a cell and one watching. Gradulla the Hutt is not known for being gentle with traitors, death is a gift at the long last. The bounty hunter knows his prey, knew where to find him from common past, but in the hunt, there is no attachment. If you are paid to deliver life into the hands of its destroyers, so you do. It is not for you to judge the length, form and pains of that life's end. That is nothing that the hunter has any say in; it is out of his hands. There is no place for mercy.

    Finally, the victim wil/>
  14. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    Excellent! :D

    In a vessel racing through hyperspace two men, one unconscious in a cell and one watching. Gradulla the Hutt is not known for being gentle with traitors, death is a gift at the long last. The bounty hunter knows his prey, knew where to find him from common past, but in the hunt, there is no attachment. If you are paid to deliver life into the hands of its destroyers, so you do. It is not for you to judge the length, form and pains of that life's end. That is nothing that the hunter has any say in; it is out of his hands. There is no place for mercy.

    Finally, the victim will awake, of course, and awake in the hands of Gradulla's minions thirsting for revenge. Respite will be short. Very short. Because, as the narcotic in his veins slowly breaks up, it will find molecules to attach to. Remains of an old addiction long conquered, but not forgotten by his cells. A small, insignificant oversight, no doubt. Nobody might notice as it will numb him first, before paralyzing his muscles and finally even his heart. The process takes only a few minutes. Maybe it will be just enough time for the inquisitor of the Hutt to gloat.

    There is no place for mercy in the hunt.


    I really like this story! =D=
  15. Lauren_Solo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2007
    star 1
    In the Hutt's hands, his life would be nothing but pain, maybe even without enough space to wish for death.

    [face_worried] That's kind of creepy. But creepy in a good way!


    Only when he turns his eyes back to his work, he realizes that the knife has fallen from his other hand. When he tries to pick it up, his arms fail him.

    [face_worried] Poor man!


    Finally she whispered, "It was not very nice and I'd rather not do it again."

    :p She's making a good story, that's for sure!


    Either annoyed her without end.

    It's not smart to annoy the assasin lady.


    "It's not nice to call me spoiled," she replied after a short while of pouting.

    :p But you are spoiled lady, lol.


    "I understand," Elida assured her. "You will see how good life really is.

    :eek: Life 'good' for a slave? Elida certainly is a spoiled little b****! [face_blush]


    Raad says they're arguing hard with government officials every day, but progress is slow.

    Yeah sure, and I'm the Queen of Sheeba! :p He just likes having an unmarried chick to play around with. ;)


    And so far, live in the harem was almost as good as a paid holiday.

    LOL!

    Very good, I liked it all! =D=
  16. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    I take it that that means, 'yes', Vadey.:p
    I'm experimenting with the narrator lately, and I'm always scared of messing up bad.

    Yup, Lauren, Leila is telling teh sad story of teh beaten puppy to Elida. Excitement has to come from somewhere in such a place.;)
    And spoilt as she is, Elida might still grow up. Someday.
    And Raad is really serious about marrying, I'm sure. I mean, he's even facing her father for that. Lord Graden, yeah, he's got bad things coming.[face_mischief]

    Oh, I just remembered. This will be a series, at least seven short stories. Speak up if you want to be on a story-spanning pm-list.:)


    Elida kept her word and when the bell rang for lunch on the next day, she dragged a reluctant Leila along to her meal with Mator Raad. The girl chattered excitedly, trying her best to convince the seemingly frightened assassin that Raad was completely harmless.

    Her hesitation gave Leila enough time to memorize the way, possible escape routes and guards. Her mission was to retrieve Elida and kill Raad, so even after the girl was gone, she would have to return to the Mator at least once. But the assassin found that few measures had been taken for danger coming from the women's quarters. As if a few bulky guards could stop her.

    Raad's private chambers were spacious, and the part the lunch was held in was separated from the rest by intricately carved movable walls. Guards were on duty in front of his doors and two were hidden rather clever inside his chambers. Only because she had been watching out for it, Leila had noticed the movement behind what seemed to be just two more faked windows covered with carved panels. Most likely there were no guards at all in the sleeping area. This might be easier than Leila had anticipated.

    The Mator was a man in his thirties with dark, curly hair cropped short and a meticulously trimmed beard. He did not strike Leila as the careless type, and his subordinates were most likely right now trying to negotiate with Lord Graden. Too bad that the latter was not interested in an association of the two houses and all prevarications would prove in vain. Graden was annoyed, and Leila was living proof of his deadly intentions. She smiled at the target person and memorised everything that might be useful.

    Raad was doing Elida the favour of playing the generous host, though Leila saw that he was just pretending. In general, Elida seemed rather oblivious of subtle body language which made it easier for Leila to attract the Mator's interest while pretending to fidget uncomfortably.

    It beat Leila how Elida managed to overslook all the hints that Raad was playing for time with the marriage. Half his reasons were made up and the other half mightily exaggerated. But the girl chattered along happily, padding Leila reassuringly and, telling about the times when she would spent all her time with Raad as it should be. And when Raad indulged her and kissed her cheek, Elida took it as sincere token of is love and approval.

    Besides, Leila's professional enticing of Raad's interest showed results pretty soon. The Mator was exquisitely friendly towards her. Eilda took that as a victory for herself, making sure her best friend and husband to be connected well. It made Leila want to laugh.

    "See, I told you it would not be bad," Elida said as they walked back to their room. "He is a really nice man."

    Leila nodded and fidgeted. "He seems nice, alright. But still, I'd rather not go again."

    "Killefitt," the young woman chided. "You will come every day now. You will see, there is nothing to be afraid of." She laid her arm around the assassin's shoulders and began to make shiny plans of the future. The main part of which seemed to be taken up by an enormous wedding.

    "I will ask Raad for you as a gift, then you don't have to fear any man. And I could teach you how to live on your own and be a free woman. One day, you won't be a slave anymore."

    "You could do that?" The astonishment in Leila's vice was only half faked. The idea/>
  17. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    Excellent update! :D

    "I cannot visit her?" Leila asked again, more timidly.

    "Not as long as she is treated outside our quarters." Hanna laid a hand around the younger woman's shoulders. "And think of the poor Mator. He must be very sad now, don't you think."

    Leila nodded.

    "I am sure we will find something to cheer him up, don't you think?" The Daja looked Leila up and down. "Would you not like to help him, Lana dear."

    Turning her face towards the older concubine, Leila faked more surprise. "But I'm all teary eyed and red in the face, Daja Hanna. I cannot show such an ugly face to Mator Raad, he'd only be more sad."

    "How little you know about our abilities with beauty," the Daja laughed. "And no more protests. Mator Raad is still a man. He will appreciate the company of a pretty girl. Trust your Daja Hanna and soon everything might just be perfect for you, little pikka."

    Leila pretended to hang her head in obedience, but inside she was jubilant. If everything went well, she might be out of here the very same night. And the Gods help Jango Fett if he was still around - if they could!


    =D=
  18. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    Thank you Vadey.:D
    So here's the cheering up, as much as it is.


    Not much later Leila was ushered over the threshold of Mator Raad's private rooms. Hanna had indeed worked a miracle with the make-up, covering not only all traces of the weeping, but also emphasising a young, wide-eyed look. Additionally, the Daja showered her with a shipload of good advice, preferences and no-gos of the Mator.

    Leila listened half-heartedly, convinced that she would not need half of the instructions, because Raad would drop dead before it came to that. But the nodded obediently, already working on the shortest way to the space port and an efficient way to kick a man despite his wearing a cod-piece.

    Daja Hanna escorted her all the way to Raads private chambers. In front of the door, she hugged the assassin tightly wishing her luck. Leila pecked her on the cheek. Hanna's triumph would be short lived if things went her way.

    The lights in Raads rooms were subdued, but not dark enough to bring a real advantage for Leila. From the corners of her eyes, she checked on the hidden guards before throwing herself down at the feet of Raad. Either she had to be really sneaky, or get him behind those moveable walls.

    "What do you want?"

    "To lessen the weight of your grief, Mator." Leila looked up tentatively.

    With a wave of the hand he signalled her to go on and Leila launched a dance routine. She knew that he was barely watching, so she quickened her pace making sure her feet were above her head a good deal of the time. Controlling her body was no challenge to her.

    She finished and waited in a proper cowering position, hoping to at least have raised enough interest to be invited to stay. There was a different routine she was hoping to launch, too.

    "Tell me, girl, why are you here?"

    Leila raised her head just enough to look at him. "I already told you, Mator, to lessen you -"

    "I mean here in my estate."

    Raising herself into a kneeling position, Leila cocked her head and exhibited a thoughtful expression. Finally, she batted her eyes at Raad.

    "I am the only child of my parents," she began tentatively, "and, they - we - we did not have much money. So they gave me to that dancing school, to get me an education for my life. It did not cost anything and they were not suspicious." Swallowing she looked from her hands back to the Mator, who seemed to be actually listening.

    "Well, dancing school is what they say, but you have to learn other - arts as well. I did not like it much and I though that having one Master instead of many would be much better." Squeezing some tears into her eyes Leila looked up.

    "How many 'Masters' did you have, girl?" The softness of his tome surprised Leila a little.

    "Only one, Mator, and is seems he only wanted to sell me here after, well-" she broke of and swallowed, allowing a tear to fall on her hand, where she quickly wiped it off with a lot of fussing.

    "Oh, dear, I am so stupid," she exclaimed as if a sudden thought had hit her and pressed her hands on her mouth. It was difficult to speak through them, but she managed suspiciously well. "Here I was to cheer you up, and now I tell you such sad things. I am so sorry, Mator!" She bounced her head onto the floor and jumped up.

    "I'll dance again, Mator Raad, I will not make you sad!" She launched a wild dance, making sure to trip over her own feet a few times. From the corner of her eyes she saw a tiny smile in Raad's face and knew she had as good as won.

    "Lana, that is your name, is it not? Lana, do stop please."

    Leila stopped in the middle of a pirouette and tumbled down ungraciously aiming for a place his feet. "Yes, Mator?" She recalled the tears to her eyes.

    "You mean well, Lana, but today -," he sighed. "Do come back tomorrow, will you?"

    Nodding so vigorously that her tears flew in all directions, Leila bowed several times before she fled his rooms. Determined to keep her game up she ran directly to Daja Hanna and threw herself at the old concubine.

    "Oh Daja, I messed it all up/>
  19. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    "You mean well, Lana, but today -," he sighed. "Do come back tomorrow, will you?"

    Nodding so vigorously that her tears flew in all directions, Leila bowed several times before she fled his rooms. Determined to keep her game up she ran directly to Daja Hanna and threw herself at the old concubine.

    "Oh Daja, I messed it all up!"

    Hanna, wrapped her arms around the weeping dancer, trying to calm her. "What happened, child, tell me. What did he say?"

    "He, he sent me away. I danced, but then he asked me, and I told him such sad things from my past. I was impossible. And then I wanted to dance again, but he told me to go. To come back tomorrow. Oh Daja, what shall I do?" Leila tried to be as fast with her ramblings as the pulling up of her nose and occasional sob allowed.

    Hanna patted her on the back reassuringly. "He would not have asked you to return if you had not pleased him. Everything will be right. Just trust your Daja."

    Leila allowed Hanna to lead her back to the women's quarters. Even if the whole next day would be filled with bathing, brushing and making up, the included massages would make up for it. That and the perspective to be out of this place during the next night.


    Poor thing! :_|

    A great update! =D=
  20. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    Vadey, I'm sure she's more upset about having to stay another day than not finding grace by Raad. His good luck, he may live another day...



    Under Daja Hanna's administrations, Leila calmed down again soon. She let herself be led to her room and tucked into bed. She did not fall asleep immediately, though, because her enraged mind kept coming up with interesting ways to dispose of that arrogant bounty hunter.

    The bell calling for breakfast woke Leila in the morning, and she wondered, why nobody had woken her earlier. The answer came only moments later in the form of Daja Hanna followed by several other slaves carrying plates of food and drink.

    "Good morning, pretty pikka," Hanna hugged her. "I have taken the liberty to have your breakfast brought here. There is so much we must do today, you'll need to eat well." And with that, she began to heap fruit on Leila's plate.

    "Can I visit Eilda, today?" the assassin asked staying true to her role.

    "Elida?" Hanna asked irritated. "No, pikka, I'm afraid the doctors have not sent a single word about poor Elida yet. But as soon as I hear anything, I will tell you first. I promise." She padded Leila's hand and gave her the full plate.

    After breakfast there were light exercises, massages, manicure and pedicure. Nobody seemed to realize the true nature of that horribly broken nail on her right little finger, and the damage was unmade within the hour. Hanna was floating on a wave of new respect while Kyra paced the quarters waiting for news about Elida.

    News that would never come, as Leila well knew. By now, Fett was far away. Leila filed the bounty hunter under subjects that caused instant agitation and tried to enjoy her last day. Not long after the bell called to dinner, Hanna appeared to do some final touch ups on her face and hair.

    "Don't worry, pikka," she tried to soothe a Leila that felt like glacial calm inside already. "Everything will be fine. You just do what the Mator says."

    "I don't know," the assassin hesitated, tugging at her hair that the Daja piled on her head. "What would Elida say?"

    "Ah, but she wouldn't want Mator Raad to be sad, would she now," Hanna chided. "I am sure she will understand when she is back. Now close your eyes and let me apply some colours."

    Leila did as ordered. The hands of the Daja were swift and sure with years of practice as she applied foundation, several layers of powder, eye shadows and kohl.

    "There you are, pikka," Hanna said, finally. "Beautiful as morning blossom. Who could but love you now?"

    Leila looked at herself in the mirror, then touched the glass, as if in awe. "But I am so nervous, Daja," she looked at Hanna imploringly. "What if I stumble, or fall, I might tip over a glass, and what it the Mator-"

    "Tut, tut, Lana. Here take this." The Daja groped in her pockets for a wrapped candy. "You chew this slowly on the way, and stop worrying. You will do fine."

    Leila nodded and pocketed the candy. It had been a risky idea, but she had seen Hanna give those to her favourite girls every now and then. For the assassin it did not matter what was in side the waterproof wrapping, it was the wrap itself she was after. Between that and the pearls she wore around her neck, pearls she had threaded on a strong, very thin nylon herself, she had everything she needed to take proof of her success to Lord Graden. Weapons of a woman, indeed.

    "Thank you Hanna, for everything." She hugged the woman, and the feeling was not faked. Without the Daja, Leila would have found her mission a whole lot more difficult.

    "Oh, pikka," Hanna return the embrace. Then she took the assassin by the hand and led her to Raad's quarters. "You have all the future open, Lana. Just don't forget your Daja, when fortune smiles on you."

    "Of course not," Leila assured her.

    The guards opened the door for her, and she stepped into Raad's rooms. Now Leila was back to her usual line of business, enchanting the victim and bringing death. She knelt down gracefully and made sure her backside stood out a little more />
  21. Lea-El Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2005
    star 4
    I'm slow catching up right now but look forward to more.
  22. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    Each chapter is even better than the last! =D=
  23. MsLanna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2005
    star 6
    There's not much more coming in this story, Lea-El. Glad, you enjoy.:D

    In that case, the best chapter is about to happen, Vadey. Hope I can match your expectations.[face_worried]



    The trip back was quiet, if boring. The captain locked himself into the cockpit, obviously not interested in more contact with his customer than necessary. Depending on the kind of customers he had, a wise decision. Leila found herself in a small room that was cut for storage, but furnished with some old chairs and a wobbly table. Choosing the chair facing the door, the assassin settled in for an eight hour wait.

    Getting permission to land was not as easy as anticipated. A rather stubborn employee of Graden did his best to redirect them to the public landing areas. And the Twi'Lek was not much help arguing, considering that he had no tongue.

    "Listen, boy," Leila finally snapped. "We're gonna land in Graden's private hangar bay. You may tell him that, and don't forget to mention I return successful. You can either let us set down or see how we turn the area into cinders trying!"

    Between the words 'successful' and 'cinders' the young man seemed to get the message, if grudgingly. "Permission to land, granted," he ground out. "The ship has to leave again in the course of-"

    "Whatever," Leila cut him short. "I'm just gonna get off and the captain is on his way again. I just hope that my ship is still around!" She broke the connection and met the eyes of the Twi'Lek. "Not the best of employers, think before you let him hire you."

    The reception on the ground was better. An aide stood waiting to lead her to Graden's personal office and Leila followed wordlessly. The way seemed longer, but that might have been her urge to get over with the mission already.

    To her surprise Jango Fett was also present. Leila felt her anger rise again, but controlled herself tightly. I am a professional, she told herself. Cold as ice, hard as stone, nothing can shake my cool. Ignoring Fett, who stood close to the door, Leila walked up to Graden. There she dropped Raad's sealed up uvula on his desk. "Mission completed."

    "Very well," Graden replied. "You do your reputation honour." The quirking of his mouth belied his tone, though, as he gave her the credits. "I heard you had some trouble with my bounty hunter?"

    "I do not have problems with bounty hunters," Leila condescended, pocketing her payment. "I cause problems." She went towards Fett, who stood still like a statue. He had not moved once, since she had come in. "Do you hear me, bounty hunter?" she asked.

    "Close enough to kiss," she challenged taking a last step towards him, "close enough to kill."

    For a long moment she stood there, with her face only an inch from his visor, her hands hovering ready at her sides. Abruptly, she stepped back and spat out in front of his feet.

    "Worth neither, Mando'a."

    "Sorry about the carpet," she said turning to look at Lord Graden while she walked around the bounty hunter and opened the door. But, again, the Lord seemed little perturbed. A wolfish smile crept into his features while he watched the two of them as if they were a play staged for his amusement.

    "I will know where to find you, in case I need your services again," his eyes darted to Fett and back to her.

    Leila nodded and left. The perspective to get paid for her payback on Fett appealed to her. Though now, that Graden had been so obvious about the idea, it would be incredibly difficult to achieve. As if we were a play for him, she remembered. As if the whole galaxy was a play. But who cared as long as the money was good?

    />
  24. VaderLVR64 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2004
    star 8
    "I will know where to find you, in case I need your services again," his eyes darted to Fett and back to her.

    Leila nodded and left. The perspective to get paid for her payback on Fett appealed to her. Though now, that Graden had been so obvious about the idea, it would be incredibly difficult to achieve. As if we were a play for him, she remembered. As if the whole galaxy was a play. But who cared as long as the money was good?


    Who cares indeed? [face_thinking]

    Another wonderful update! =D=
  25. NiobeAsha Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 6, 2007
    star 2
    Great job!! =D=

    "Close enough to kiss," she challenged taking a last step towards him, "close enough to kill."

    For a long moment she stood there, with her face only an inch from his visor, her hands hovering ready at her sides. Abruptly, she stepped back and spat out in front of his feet.

    "Worth neither, Mando'a."


    Hahaha, perfect. I loved it. Can't wait for the next!!
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