Inside the Brass Spanner Trade and Craft | Chapter 1 in Star Wars: Shards Discussion Boards | World Anvil
Sat, Jun 18th 2022 06:27   Edited on Fri, Aug 12th 2022 11:54

Inside the Brass Spanner Trade and Craft

 
The walk through the Brass Spanner is a stroll through a conflict of interest. On one side, there are shelves stacked with small items from the useful to the eclectic. Medical packs sit near general purpose power cells and replica Sullustan fluid lamps. Backpacks are lined up next to imitations of Pantoran thatch-cloth.
 
Kem Jelnu steps inside a small, spartan room that has a desk, four chairs made from starship seats, and a native potted Jidepa plant. A black metal rack holds a nest of data servers, complete with a holoscreen access.
 
Once behind the desk, Kem settles down into the padded durasteel chair. The aged metal creaks in protest. He indicates the chairs across from him.
 
“If you’re thirsty, I can get you some fermented cactus juice. Local grown.” Kem clears his throat, which sounds like a dull rumble. “I appreciate that you’re willing to hear me out. I’ll lay it out for you with a short story.”
 
“When the Galactic Empire rose to replace the Republic, my people didn’t pay it much mind. We Cragmoloids are a private people and keep much to ourselves. The Empire didn’t seem to care much for that. They arrived, made a lot of talk about ‘bettering our society’. We politely declined. But ‘no’ wasn’t an option. We just didn’t realize it.”
 
“Many of my people we abducted and placed in labor camps. Some working the Imperial mines to carve out ditherit ore for Imperial engines and reactors. Others were manual labor hauling materials over terrain Imperial war machines couldn’t move through. They worked most of us to death, then came back to abduct more.”
 
“The Imperial Moffs took a liking to our arts and crafts. Mostly the ancient relics my people cherished. Priceless items like scrolls, bowls, and statues like the one you brought with you. I’m one of my people’s relic hunters. We look for our own lost relics to try to restore our culture. Otherwise, it’ll be forgotten. Lost in a few generations.”
 
“Along the way, I come across relics from other cultures. I take great pains to find where their home is. History is written by the winner, but that doesn’t mean the truth is gone. Truth is what it is. You honor it, or you get poisoned by the lie.”
 
Kem shrugs.
 
“I wouldn’t ask this if I had made any headway myself. There is a set of five amulets called the Doors of Wisdom. Cragmoloid elders wore them when performing ceremonies like marriages and such. Imperial Moff Porth Cabale stole them from my people. While I was negotiating with the man to get them back, a thief stole the amulets from him. Her name’s Irrit Deeneru.”
 
“Cornering Irrit hasn’t been easy. She slipped past me more than once. Now, as I’m told, she’s got some deal with Rogga the Hutt with the Doors of Wisdom here in the marketplace. Irrit knows what I look like. Rogga knows I’m looking for the Doors of Wisdom. So, I can’t go myself. I’d be noticed too fast.”
 
Kem gestures to Dizzy and Iwa.
 
“That’s where you come in. I can provide a holo of Irrit Deeneru, but you’ll have to do some legwork in the Urmbrek Market outside to track her location down. Best chance of that is to ask Olee Pindol or a mechanic down by the spaceport named Gov Gnul. Olee hears a lot of the gossip. Gov has helped me out before. He’s often in the know as to who comes and goes from the Nelden spaceport.”
 
He shakes his head.
 
“Like I said before, you can have the link armor pieces, even if you don’t help. Those sections aren’t mine and the Jedi said they didn’t want them when I asked. Something about ‘the Force’ and it says I need them more than any Jedi would. I would appreciate your help, though. My culture is fading. Ever little piece I can return to my people gives them a little of their spirit back.”
Sun, Jun 19th 2022 02:46

I watch my glorious Mistress enter the shop and I know that she wanted me to do something, but right now all I can do is bask in the personal attention I was given. How wonderful it was to be the sole focus of her time and attention. I want to make her happy and ensure that she has exactly what she needs. I re-play the words that she spoke - directly to me!!! - and then start my mission by scanning the street to make sure that no one is paying any special attention to either the store or my Mistress - or that Dizzy person. Not that I can see any reason why her disappearing would be such a bad thing!   Once I scan and determine that my Mistress has gotten the big guy all busy and enter the store and then scan for the big, scary droid. I am sure that he is probably not a worshiper of my Mistress and therefore cannot be trusted. Perhaps I will get the chance to convert him????
Charkarr, since you're actively scanning the street outside the Brass Spanner Trade and Craft., roll your Perception plus your Video and auditory sensors bonus.

Sun, Jun 19th 2022 01:00
Mon, Jun 20th 2022 07:37

I fish the wrapped-up statue out of my helmet and set it on Kem Jelnu's desk. I needed to do that anyway -- I want my bucket back -- but it does serve as a useful mental device that buys us time to think.
I know what General Crell would have said about this tale of woe.
O'course, I also know what General Brunig would have said about it, and it would have involved a lot more invective. But the only quibbling between them would have been on how much of their currently available resources should get poured into the short-term destinies of this ex-Moff versus that scughole Rogga.
There are consequences if we go too hard on a Hutt, however far from her appropriate region of space she may be. Serious consequences.
It would be easier for us to decide whether we can take on this job if we know how fast the clock is ticking.
 
"Hutts tend to attract notice," I say. "Surely you've paid someone to watch arrivals at the spaceport, alert you if any tight formations big enough -- and grubby enough -- to be a Hutt with retinue land. Is Rogga already on-planet?"
Wed, Jun 22nd 2022 01:09

Just before I turn to go inside, I think that my Mistress would prefer that I stop and take a moment to actually analyze what my sensors have told me before I continue my mission. She does tend to think that neatness counts. After all, look at how nicely she made my colors match and how neatly all of my accessories fit inside my shell casing. It is so easy to tell the magnificence of my Mistress in the care she gives to everyone and everything she comes in contact with!
Scanning the street for anyone that means harm to my mistress! | 2d6,1d6
7, 1
Wed, Jun 22nd 2022 01:27

I listen quietly and with respect to the words pouring from Kem. There is obviously a lot of passion and belief in his words - and quite a bit of frustration as well. I do understand both sides of that and I hope that he is not letting that drive him to put our lives in danger. I think he considers us capable and Dizzy most certainly looks like she can hold her own in any kind of fight and most people in the galaxy fear Wookies for a reason. What he is asking us to do appears reasonable, but I have so many bells ringing that it is hard to hear anyone else over the clamor they make.   There are times when I wish that I was a member of a psychic race. I attend to Dizzy's question and am thankful again that she agreed to come and help me with this task. I had not thought that far ahead. I sigh quietly and sit back to see how he responds to my silence and Dizzy's questions.
Streetwise knowledge to see if I can sense deception | 2d6,1d6
7, 3
Iwa, you send that Kem is being genuine and honest. He seems tired as if he's tried most other options before asking for outside help.

Thu, Jun 30th 2022 02:40
Thu, Jun 30th 2022 02:41

Jelnu leans back in his chair, then opens a desk drawer. After pulling out a datapad, he places it on his desk and activates it. A blue-tinged holographic image appears of an Ugnaught dressed in worn spacer’s coveralls and a leather vest thick with tools.
 
“I have, ‘cause you’re right. Hutts attract attention. They thrive on it.” He points at the image. “That’s the mechanic I mentioned, Gov Gnul. He works at the spaceport as their chief mechanic. If anything like a Hutt’s retinue shows up, he’ll let me know.”
 
“So far, Gov’s only spotted three people from Rogga.” Jelnu taps a key on the datapad. “I’ve got holos.”
 
The image of Gov is replaced by a still image of a Devaronian in a well-made, but modest suit. On either side walked two humans burly enough to be muscular wookiees that had their fur shaved off before they were stuffed into lightly armored clothes. Jelnu pointed at the trio.
 
“Rogga’s negotiator and bodyguards. His name is Kelu Gil. He’s only been on world for half a day. So he hasn’t had any time to wheel and deal. Kelu will have to follow the ‘proprieties’ to make sure Rogga’s reputation is kept intact here on Dorella.”
 
Jelnu tapped a key again to replace the view with an image of a Bothan woman. She was dressed in modest, close-fitting clothing made to allow good freedom of motion.
 
“That’s Irrit Deeneru. Art thief. Wanted for a dozen art heists across Tapani. I’ve heard from Olee, she’s been haunting the market and Olee’s shop while checking her messages.”
 
He tapped the datapad again. This time, the image of an older human in an Imperial Moff uniform appeared.
 
“Moff Porth Cabale. No one’s seen him here, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he sent a couple of troopers to get those amulets back just to soothe his pride.”
 
Jelnu turns his attention to Iwa.
 
“I understand if you’re suspicious, and I know I’m asking a lot. But Bai spoke highly of the both of you. Especially in the integrity and honor department. I place a lot of store in that.” He shrugs. “But a Hutt isn’t something to take lightly. If you help me, you’ve my word I won’t sell you out or abandon you. It’s not my way.”
 
The Cragmoloid man leans back in his chair again, then sighs.
 
“If you don’t trust me, or like what I’m saying, you can walk away with the Jedi link armor. I won’t hold it against you, and I’ll just figure something out on my own. If you want to search my background, go right ahead. My Rebel Alliance service record is easy enough to find.”
 
After a moment, he adds, “Anything else you’d like to know about what you’d be stepping into?”
Thu, Jun 30th 2022 03:47   Edited on Thu, Jun 30th 2022 09:30

Charkarr…

 
Data from the outside scans show that the area is quiet with only a few pedestrians at this time of day. A whine from a landspeeder with a faulty motivator echoes from the next street over.
 
A pedestrian or two looked toward Charkarr but only for a moment. They continued on their way without a backwards glance.
 
Inside, the little droid’s sensors pick up a multitude of items. There are replicas of various cultural artifacts, some quite well made. But they are, in fact, duplicates. Signs on the shelves state this in no uncertain terms, they are only imitations.
 
Beyond that, inside, there are fresh rations! Recently charged power clips for devices and weapons! Repair tools!
 
The latter registers with the droid. Charkarr shakes with excitement. The Mistress could make glorious use of those when repairing… well… anything! Just any device the Mistress wishes to bless with her sage guidance!
 
Charkarr was engrossed in the scan data along with the wealth of information about what the shop offered. Data, so much data, and all of it useful for the Mistress! Delight filled the droid to the brim. Charkarr vibrated in place at thought of how proud the Mistress will be.
Thu, Jun 30th 2022 09:31

“Ahem”
 
Charkarr stopped vibrating.
 
The little droid turned toward the voice to see a pair of rail-thin, dull metal kneecaps and upper thighs of an IG-series assassin droid. An ominous figure, it was dressed in a long, battered and trimmed shopkeeper’s apron. The IG droid towered over Charkarr, holding a datapad in its hands.
 
“You have been energetically scanning the shop and it’s inventory. Twice. I assure you, nothing is missing or mislabeled. So, I trust you are looking for something of great interest?”
Sun, Jul 3rd 2022 02:31

Iwa looks almost as tired as the Cragmoloid. "I think one of the greatest evils that has arisen from the Empire is that they have taught everyone to not trust. I do not mean to belittle your troubles or find fault with you, your methods, or your people." *sighs* "It has been a very long time since I have not had to double-check stories and facts and verify all that I have been told." She glances at Dizzy to see if she will have any objection to what she says next but continues on without waiting - Dizzy is free to speak her peace as well and to choose a different path if she feels led to.   "I will be happy to see what I can do to assist you in the retrieval of your race's amulets. Please do understand that I cannot guarantee success, but I will attempt the retrieval." She also thinks to herself in the darkest recesses and I hope that I live through this - whether I regret it or not!
Sun, Jul 3rd 2022 02:38

I have to look up and up and up. Why, oh why are some droids made so tall? I see no benefit to it and if there was a benefit then I am sure that my Mistress would have made me tall as well!   "I am on ASSIGNMENT and will do whatever is necessary to achieve that. My Mistress wanted to verify that you were a legitimate concern and so I did what was NECESSARY!" I do a quick twirl and scan the inventory for a third time. How dare he interfere with my mission??   "I notice that you have a lot of tools that are useful for repairing a variety of machinery. There is a chance that my Mistress might be interested in some of these to complete her toolset. Does your master take credits only or can trades be arranged? Is it possible for me to make a deal so that I can buy something for my Mistress?? I know that she would be so very happy to get something special from her personal and favorite droid!!!"
Scan inventory a 3rd time just to prove I can! | 1d6
4
Fri, Jul 8th 2022 12:04

ImpSec training says that if a salesperson looks me straight in the eye, speaks calmly and earnestly, and gives me a good solid handshake -- not too firm, not too weak -- then he is definitely a con artist and I should start looking for the sleight of hand.
Fortunately, Kem Jelnu has done none of those things.
 
Also, I think Iwa likes him for business purposes. I trust her judgment of people.
 
"Give us the deets on a couple of freelance retrieval specialists," I say. "One likely to take the Moff's job. A different one known to you personally, low level scum, does a bit of swaggering in a betting hall but would hide behind a robust seven-year-old if a Ballroom Blitz breaks out. You know the kind of tool I mean? You can tell, just looking at 'em: clammy hands."
To Iwa, I suggest, "We can approach this Deeneru person directly. Say we overheard Clammy Hands claiming to have pointed her out for the other bounty hunter. Say we think her buyer screwed her, and we're offended on principle. We're here shopping for supplies for a bachelorette party anyhow and we offer Estrogen Solidarity. Yeah?"
Sat, Jul 16th 2022 06:38

Kem nods a little at Iwa’s reply.
 
“Thank you. My people thank you.” He then takes a deep breath that he lets out with a long sigh. “I understand all too well no one can promise success. Been too many times I’ve been where you’re sitting when someone asked me what I’m asking you. It’s a hard thing.”
 
Then he chuckles at Dizzy’s reply.
 
“… ‘Hide behind a robust seven-year-old if a Ballroom Blitz breaks out’? I know the type… the ‘tool’ you’re talking about. Punched the snout of a few, too. I can think of two ‘Clammy Hands’ right off. Ranth Zadoss and Kaithe Nes. Former Imperial Commandos, turned low end bounty hunters. I know a guy in the Bounty Hunter Guild. I’ll get the record on those two and send it over.”
 
Kem lifts up his datapad and types out a short message. After that, he sets the pad down then gestures to Dizzy.
 
“You’ll have it in a moment. Anything else? If not, I’ll get those link armor pieces for you.”
Sat, Jul 16th 2022 06:53

Meanwhile… in an aisle between the shelves… not far away…

 
Iggy places his metallic hands on his thin hips.
 
“How RUDE! You are an IMPERTINENT little droid! Didn’t your MISTRESS teach you MANNERS?”
 
He lets out a mechanical version of a derisive sniff.
 
“My kind, thoughtful, and gracious EMPLOYER, welcomes credit. He is quite reasonable and does accommodate equitable trade.”
 
The former assassin droid folded his hands over his chest and leather apron.
 
“You? Make a deal? Do you have credits? If not, there is a job or two you can do in trade. Show me the tools you are wanting to ‘purchase’ and we can discuss proper compensation. POLITELY.”
Wed, Jul 20th 2022 11:08

I fume quietly to myself. How dare he insult my Mistress by suggesting that she has not equipped me with all of the protocols necessary for normal interactions. HOWEVER, I do really want to purchase a new arc tool and a fusion cutter. She could also benefit from three assorted sizes of hydro spanners. I can see these items on the shelves around me. I do not have enough credits in my account, and I don't want to use my Mistress's money, so I am thinking my only option is to do a job of two for Iggy. I sigh heavily and tell him, "I see a lovely new arc tool on one of the shelves and a few rows over is a fusion cutter. In the back is a wide selection of hydro spanners and I know of at least three sizes that is missing from my Mistress's kit. How many jobs will it take in order to be able to ";purchase" thise few items?"
Wed, Jul 20th 2022 11:17

"I would be quite delighted to see the armor pieces you have while we begin to work on a strategy. If we cannot devise a better plan than Dizzy proposed - at least we have a plan. It might actually be fun to bash in some heads and get back your amulets. We have been facing long odds on almost all of our jobs lately so this might be a nice break from the stress. Plus, it offers us a chance to prep for the bachelorette party and start the wedding plans. I know Dizzy has some great ideas about what she wants her wedding to be like and we really do have to find a dress for her. In fact, that would be a great cover that would let us get into and through the shopping district. We can make an obvious nuisance of ourselves and once they decide we are harmless, we can start working on the amulet project. After all, a girl needs something old to go with her wedding dress. Right?!??!?!?
Thu, Aug 11th 2022 12:27   Edited on Thu, Aug 11th 2022 12:27

Kem chuckles, trunk curled to the right in amusement.
 
“Good and done then. I’ll be right back with the armor pieces.”
Thu, Aug 11th 2022 04:19   Edited on Thu, Aug 11th 2022 04:19

The chair protests once more while the Cragmoloid gets up and walks out of the office. A keypad chimes from nearby in the shop, followed by the dull snap of a sliding, possibly armored, door. The kind used with a footlocker or a spacer’s chest.
 
While the shopkeeper is away, the datapad in front of Dizzy chimes. Two profiles appear for Ranth Zadoos and Kaithe Nes. Just as Kem said, both are former Imperial Commandos, human, and low end bounty hunters.
 

Ranth Zadoos

 
Ranth Zadoos is the taller of the two. Lean, he has black eyes, short-cut dark hair with a tan complexion. An old scar, possibly from a vibroknife runs along the right side of his cheek. Ranth was an Imperial sniper, then a scout, before becoming a commando. The Galactic Empire discharged him from the service with the rank of lieutenant. There are some notes that Ranth may have been forced out because of accusations involving theft.
 
Once out, he signed up with the Bounty Hunter’s guild.
 
The record of his time with the Bounty Hunter’s guild isn’t that long. Most of his contracts are with former and current Galactic Imperials. Many of those Imperials are Moffs, such as Imperial Moff Porth Cabale. Those contracts were for live bounties against thieves, smugglers, and to recover ‘stolen property’. There are some rumors of Ranth using civilians as ‘shields’ to protect himself in a fight. Nothing’s been proven so far.
 

Kaithe Nes

 
What his partner, Kaithe Nes, lacks in height, she makes up for in muscle. A heavy weapon specialist, Kaithe spent a good part of her Imperial military career as an Imperial Drop Trooper before transferring to be an Imperial commando. Other than her stocky build, she has shoulder length red hair, hazel-green eyes. She left the service as a lieutenant. Like Ranth, she left with a few rumors behind her. A few notes suggest she was taking side work as an enforcer to ‘pacify’ Imperial governors.
 
Also like Ranth, once discharged, she signed up with the Bounty Hunter’s guild. Most of her contracts were for recovering two-bit thieves and similar criminals. Sometimes for local law enforcement, sometimes for crime lords. An odd thread is that while she’s listed as doing a lot of ‘leg breaker’ type work, she’s rarely involved in direct fighting; often it’s more from ambush.
 
 
Other than being partners, the one thing they have in common is Imperial Moff Porth Cabale. The Galactic Empire had assigned them to his personal guard for at least two years before getting discharged.
 
By the time you both have read through the brief biographies, Kem returns with an armload of armor pieces. They are dark, jointed and should easily connect to the harness system that Iwa already has. The dull red emblem of the Jedi Order on the shoulder plates is faded, scratched, but easily identified.
Thu, Aug 11th 2022 04:30

“Here you go. The plates and the second harness can be a bit tricky to weave together, but trust me, it will. Takes a week of work for it all, but I’ve been told that it’s worth it.”
 
Kem drops a backpack on the desk.
 
“Use that to store the pieces until you get the underlayers woven together. Most put it together wrong, so it slows them down more than it should. But, while you’re here, let me show you a trick or two about getting this thing to cooperate. It’ll just take a moment…”
Iwa, it will take a week of game time and an armor repair roll ( defaults to Technical ) from you, Dizzy or both to interconnect the pieces to make a “twinlayer link” set. Once you’re done, your armor will have the following stats: +1D+2 to all physical attacks; +1D to all energy attacks; -1D to all Dexterity attribute and Dodge checks

Thu, Aug 11th 2022 04:32
Thu, Aug 11th 2022 05:53   Edited on Thu, Aug 11th 2022 05:53

Meanwhile… in an aisle between the shelves… a deal is offered…

 
Iggy tilts his cylindrical chrome head to the right as he considers Charkarr.
 
“One job for the hydospanners. Another for the fusion cutter and arc tool,” he replies in an even, matter-of-fact tone.
 
“The first job for the hydrospanners is to go to Neldon’s starport side and speak to an old inventory droid named AC-D3 at the Port Storage Units. I’ve been trying to get him to deliver a box of power converters for two standard weeks.” Iggy let out a long sigh. “See what is holding up the delivery. You have to speak to him directly as he has a faulty comlink.”
 
The droid managed as best as his body allowed, a human-like shrug.
 
“It could be that the delivery has slipped his receptors, which is fine. If the box is there, get it and bring it back. You doing that would save me time and be well worth the hydrospanners.”
 
Iggy cleared his throat with a mechanical sound.
 
“The second job is just a delivery. Over at the Underminer Quarter, deliver a box of circuit regulators and a ore analyzer to Tose Phen, a Togrutan prospector. You’ll probably be speaking with his droid, DT-9G or Spudnik as his master calls him. Master Tose has been waiting for this ore analyzer to come in for some time.”
 
A small silence fell between the pair before Iggy gestured with a thin, metal hand.
 
“Well? I’ve the box for delivery at the front counter for Master Tose. Speaking with AC-D3 simply is just visiting him at the Port Storage Units offices. Do we have a deal?”
 
Fri, Aug 12th 2022 03:47

I hum quietly to myself as I ponder what was said, what wasn't said, and run the probability that several lies have been told. Living and working with my Mistress - especially while we have been associating with the current crew - has proven that nothing is ever easy. On the other hand, my Mistress would really love to have those new tools - I just KNOW it!!   I finally decide that the reward is worth the risk.   "I know you mentioned the pick up job first, but I think I will take the box for delivery and then swing around to pick up the other box before coming back here." I attempt to put confidence into my words and imbue them with experience at handling myself in any kind of situation. I am almost positive that the delivery job will be legit and the other sounds like I will be stealing. I can hope I am wrong, but I was found in a recycle heap after all........
Roll perception to determine how much I believe Iggy as well as attempting to intimidate him into believing I am a bad ass. | 1d6
2
Fri, Aug 12th 2022 11:54

“Hm,” is Iggy’s only metallic reply.
 
The tall droid inclines his head slightly forward toward Charkarr. Droids typically lack eyebrows, but this seems to be Iggy’s approximation of a human raising one eyebrow. After a few nanoseconds of quiet, Iggy goes to the front desk, then returns with a blue with brown trim backpack.
 
A few stains decorate the fabric, not to mention some ominous singe-marks, but a quick scan confirms the pack is intact. Also, the box to deliver to the prospector is nestled inside.
 
“Very well. The box is in this backpack and I’ve adjusted the straps so it will fit your frame. It’s a durable canva-cloth so it will handle bumps and scrapes well.”
 
Iggy bends over and slips the backpack with its contents on Charkarr, then fastens the weathered canva-cloth straps in place. Tarnished steel buckles hold it all in place. After checking straps and buckles twice to make sure nothing is loose, Iggy stands back up.
 
“There. Now, off with you. While you are away, I will package up the tools you’re wanting.”