Closer Than a Brother *Closed*

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Lady Alainn, Dec 31, 2014.

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  1. Bonadan System
    Outer Rim Territories
    Year: 3942 BBY

    Though sometimes referred to as the “Coruscant of Industry” by those in the Outer Rim, Bonadan did not actually have much in common with the capital of the Republic. While Coruscant boasted of towering buildings that literally scraped the sky and covered the entire planet, the sludge-painted refineries and dull, rusted factories of Bonadan merely suggested they might someday like to grow a little taller and spread over a little more of the planet’s yellowed soil. It was true that while at the heart of three trade routes Bonadan boomed with business of every variety, it still lacked the zeal to attract people permanently to its surface. Whether it was the thick, foul air that assailed nostrils and curled toes or the hideous row upon row of grimy smokestacks belching those yellow sulfur clouds into the atmosphere, Bonadan was—to put it politely—an eyesore and a place one travelled to only when one must and even fewer subjected themselves to living there. Tradesmen constantly came and went, staying only long enough to make enough money to leave the cesspool and find jobs in more desirable places. Even the gang-infested streets of Nar Shadda or the poisonous desolation of Taris were more preferable to a position on this god-forsaken planet.

    Workers, therefore, could be hard to come by and almost always came unwillingly. The Mirialan family of Akari were no exception. Forced to relocate because of a mountain of debt, Iluna Akari left her home world of Mirial at the tender age of five with her parents and four older siblings for the industrial world of Bonadan. The plan was to stay no more than three years; just long enough to earn the capital required to leave the Outer Rim and move to a much better planet in the Colonies or even Coruscant itself! Such dreams abruptly came to an end when a deadly fever broke out within the year and claimed all but one of Iluna's older siblings and both of her parents. Circumstances could hardly get worse, at least so the two orphaned children believed, but then the slavers came to clear out Beggar Alley where they'd been living in a makeshift tent made out of the broken lip of a smokestack. Too young to work in the mines, Iluna was separated from her sister and sold into the household of Kreeda Harvis, a wealthy executive of one of the Bonadan mining corporations.

    And here, a few years later, is where our story truly begins...

    "Iluna! Wine for my guest."

    Instantly the wide pair of blue eyes darker than night snapped open at the barked order and lowered to the freshly opened bottle in her pale green hands. Wine already? This guest must have bad news if her master was demanding the drink with the meal. Iluna obediently trotted over to the tall reptile at the other end of the long table from Kreeda Harvis and ducked in a little curtsy as she'd been taught before standing on tip-toe to fill the proper glass. The reptile chuckled in a deep, throaty way and placed a hand on Iluna's head, attempting to ruffle the short, black hair.

    "A pretty little one this child is," the Tiss'shar croaked in heavily accented Galactic Basic. Outwardly Iluna stood still, perfectly so, her head bowed as she'd been taught while the guest looked her over, but inwardly she shrank from the unwanted attention, tugging emotion, thought, everything she was within to the very center of her being where she could shut the door on the world. It was a defense mechanism, and a much needed one, to keep from cringing or grimacing or talking back or any of the other hundreds of responses that she'd learned long ago would only earn her pain. A clawed finger trailed down the side of her face and tucked under her chin, raising her expressionless gaze to cold, lidless eyes of yellow. "One of your orphans you so diligently care for?"

    Harvis, a fat, overconfident human with pudgy bejeweled fingers and a thick neck draped in fabrics even the queen of Naboo would be envious of, glowered at the mocking tone and waved Iluna back to her duties. Gratefully, the little Mirialan unhooked her jaw from the scaly finger and scurried around the table. "Now, what have you to say about my-- as you so kindly put it-- unpolished business venture?"

    "Jervis Dackett was apprehended about a week ago."

    "They've tracked the slave supply to Dackett already?" Harvis swore under his breath and swallowed the contents of his glass in one gulp seconds after Iluna filled it. She poured in a little more wine and stepped back, but not as far back as she probably should have. Her ears tingled with curiosity as she slowly uncurled herself from her "safe room" inside. Slave supply? They were talking about her sister! Sort of.

    "They can't trace it to me, Vi-lee-do," Harvis continued, a little less heated now under the soothing guidance of the wine. "I made sure of that when I set it up. Black market is dangerous but profitable business and selling slaves in the Core Worlds even more so after that anti-slavery law passed. How else do you think I could afford a filter system to keep the stench of Bonadan out of my house? Anyway, Dackett has no idea who I am let alone possess the ability to point anything illegal to me. All ties end at the Zygerrian, I believe, and the Republic has no right to fiddle in their affairs."

    Vi-lee-do picked up the wine goblet carefully between her clawed fingers and swished the purple liquid around the outside as she waited patiently for the fat man to run out of breath. A slow smile accompanied by an even slower blink stretched across her snout when she found her opening. "Nevertheless, I have reason to believe these investigators are Jedi." She paused long enough for Harvis to gasp, "Jedi!" before continuing. "All your ties may point to the Zygerrian, but where do your loose ends lead to? They will find you, Harvis, and they will arrest you for your illegal business ventures. You've dipped your hand into one cookie jar too many this time."

    Iluna balked at the Tiss'shar, her eight-year-old mind already flying into overdrive with the implications of Harvis' empire crumbling. Would she...could she be free?
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