Eleanor M

United States

"you know what the issue is with this world? everyone wants some magical solution to their problem and everyone refuses to believe in magic." -Sebastian Stan

"if it was never new and it never gets old, then it's a folk song." -Oscar Isaac

Message from Writer

MAJOR apology out to all those who participated in my contests and didn't receive their prize due to my absence and quarantine moods. so very sorry! I plan to become more active soon.

song that i'm currently obsessed with: Animal by SYML

This is the Way #SmilesforSpring1

September 18, 2020

FREE WRITING

9
    The cantina looked almost exactly like one you would see in a spice-runner holo, or read about in an obviously fictional yet deliciously thrilling holonovel. Corliss Faizah raked the place with her eager eyes: she had never visited a cantina this exquisite in her life. Having traveled from backwater world to backwater world since birth she hadn’t had the chance.
    Kyvon Tre seemed less impressed--after all, he’d worked in a bar for two years before he had discovered Corliss. But still...the place was fancy.
    “Well,” Corliss said, “I hope you have a couple extra credits, ‘cause coming into a bar and doing something else besides buying a drink looks awfully suspicious.”
    As they made their way to the barstools, they passed a booth in which a male human was shamelessly making out with a female Twi’lek. 
    “Not really,” was all Kyvon offered in response.
    They seated themselves at the nearly empty bar, Kyvon ordering the drinks while Corliss observed the HoloNet broadcast on the viewscreen behind the counter. Reporters rambled about “a free galaxy” and “peace restored” as the Empire was no longer in control. Corliss knew better than to believe that the Republic would win--there would still be remnants, pieces of the Empire that would not perish, at least for a long time. Its influence had been profound, and despite the losses of two supreme leaders, the galaxy remained acutely aware of the likelihood of those remnants rising up once again, with potentially more wrath than before. 
   “...Corellian whiskey,” Kyvon was saying, snapping Corliss out of her thoughts. She realized he held a shot glass out to her and she took it in her hand. Its contents were a rich amber-gold, with tiny spheres of ice floating inside.
After a few sips, she was serious again. “Do you really think we’ll find anything here? I mean, we could ask around, but that would raise suspicion…”
   Kyvon shrugged his broad shoulders. “It said that he had ties here. What better place to find some info than a bar?”
   Corliss shook her head, almost hopelessly. “With the luck we’ve had recently, I don’t know if we’re going to find anything.”
   “Who needs luck?" Kyvon asked. He leaned forward, flashing a charming grin. "You got me."
   Corliss rolled her eyes. "Well then no wonder it's been rough going. ... Maybe we should just listen around," she proposed.
   "Listening around won't do you any good," someone said. Corliss shot to her feet, whipping around to see an armored man facing them, helmeted head cocked. A dark visor covered his face, but Corliss could hear the slight grin in his rich, deep voice--a grin that colored his tone with mystery and knowledge. His shining, silvery armor plates adorned his body, and a grayish-green body glove could be glimpsed beneath it. A smooth, almost leathery cape rippled subtly as he moved forward, his weatherproof boots making next to no sound. He had a long rifle slung over his back, along with a satchel and sashes of weapons. Displaying an intimidating-looking gauntlet on each arm, he pushed his thumbs into his belt and watched them casually.
   Kyvon looked on warily but kept silent. Corliss was secretly relieved: he could sometimes speak his mind in situations such as this, and more often than not it led to someone getting a blaster bolt to the head.
   The man stepped closer. "You see, I've had my share of some good old-fashioned spywork and let me tell you something--it's never sufficient."
   "Then how come you listened to our conversation like that?" Kyvon demanded.
   "I simply overheard it. My point is, don't go looking for something before it has the chance to drop right in your lap. You could risk...exposure."
   Corliss saw it. The man's helmet turned, and however slight the movement was, it still faced Corliss. She felt strangely challenged, as though looking at the slim, dark visor was like looking into an abyss, searching for the tiniest clue to solve the mystery of the emptiness before her.
   "What are you saying?" she asked. Her fingers crept centimeter by centimeter closer to her holster.
   "I'm saying that I know where you're trying to go. And it turns out I'm going to the very same place."
   Corliss's hand halted. She glanced over at Kyvon, who looked both suspicious and bewildered. "Why don't you go then?"
   The man laughed--a deep, throaty sound. "You misunderstand. I have something you need."
   "And what is that?" Kyvon asked.
   "He probably means a ship, Kyvon," Corliss was embarrassed to offer.
   "Bingo," the man replied. "If I've learned anything in my life, it's to take advantage of those chances falling into your lap and make something off of it."
   "Money," Corliss admitted through gritted teeth.
   "Money," the man affirmed, then swept his cape to the side, freeing an arm to gesture airily towards the bar. "Seems I've hit the jackpot, seeing as you're rich enough to afford Corellian whiskey."
   So sure of himself, Corliss thought almost enviously. Keeping the thought to herself, she said aloud, "Having just purchased the whiskey in question, we may not be as rich as you think."
   "Ah. Or perhaps, you're only reluctant to pay me."
   "Is that unusual?" Kyvon challenged.
   "No," the man replied. "Many people I meet tend to be uncertain around me; I can definitely see it in you."
   Corliss restrained Kyvon when he looked as though he was going to bash the man's helmet right in.
   "How much are you asking?" she inquired.
   "Twenty-five hundred credits," he said with a sense of finality.
   "Twenty-five f--" Kyvon began, incredulous, but Corliss elbowed him.
   "It's a deal," she said. "But only if we pay you after we arrive. I don't want any gimmicks, um--" she gestured towards him, inviting him to say his name.
   "No gimmicks," the man agreed. "And just call me the Mandalorian."
  
   The ship, as Corliss quickly learned, was called the Razor Crest, fittingly. Its sharp edges and intimidating design (especially taking into account its size) lived up to the name. It was certainly in better shape than anything Corliss had ever had the chance to fly.
   Corliss observed the mandalorian as he sent the ship through the streaking, blue-and-white blaze of hyperspace. The way he moved, his attitude, how his hands would twitch towards his blaster at every movement on their part. While Corliss was likewise wary of him, she decided that this man had something deeper beneath the helmet, beyond the mask.
   But there was no time for wondering, as the ship lurched out of lightspeed.
   She gazed out of the ship's viewport, watching as they grew closer and closer to the heavily populated Coruscant. Traffic surged around them, all different models, types, sizes of ships buzzing about on business.
   "You better not be getting us into any messes," Kyvon mumbled, glaring knives at the mandalorian.
   "You're paying me. Do you really think I would put you in danger?"
   "If it meant more money from someone else, yes."
   "I don't operate like that," the mandalorian replied. He flicked a switch and adjusted a toggle, slowly lowering them onto a rooftop landing platform.
   As soon as they touched down, Corliss exited the cockpit and made her way towards the lowering boarding ramp. Kyvon was close behind her, and then came the mandalorian, brushing past the two and moving out onto the roof. Corliss glimpsed their destination, a few buildings and streets away: a tall, glassy, expensive-looking building adorned with lights and signs. It was the most popular hotel in Coruscant, and the alleged base of a secreted band of spice runners, one of whom Corliss was anxious to confront.
   Before Corliss and Kyvon could say a word, they heard the whine of a blaster cocking. They turned around and saw that the mandalorian was at the ready, rifle brandished. Another ship was approaching.
   "You know them?" Corliss asked warily.
   "Unfortunately, yes."
   " 'Unfortunately'?"
   "I'll get you out of this alive."
   "I didn't think we'd have to consider the option of being dead," Kyvon shot back.
   The mandalorian didn't reply. Instead, he watched as the ship landed beside them, let the strong wind that its thrusters kicked up ripple against his cape. The hatch opened in the side of the freighter, and a man stepped out. He was clothed in a mechanic's uniform, but though he may have looked as though he were taking the ship for a test run, it was merely a disguise. He was here for a very different reason.
   "Bahadur," Corliss said, jaw clenched. "I didn't think I'd see you for a long time."
   "To my utmost joy, here you are," Bahadur answered. "Back with even bigger bounties on your heads. This'll be a great benefit to me, you know. You should be happy!" the man's dark eyes lit up. "Helping others and all that jazz."
   Corliss shook her head. "Why do you think we had a bounty?"
   Bahadur nodded slightly, more amused than agreeing. "True."
   The mandalorian cleared his throat, the sound muffled and grainy through the audiovocalizers. Bahadur looked at him. "Oh yes, yes!" he pulled out his blaster. "You're coming with me, by the way."
   Kyvon nearly shouted. "Woah, woah, woah. What happened to 'that's not how I operate'?"
   The mandalorian snorted. "It's amazing how gullible people can be."
   Corliss brandished her blaster. "I'm not going with you, you son of a--"
   The mandalorian shot forward, kneeing her in the stomach and wrenching the blaster out of her grip. Pushing her forward, she stumbled in surprise into the waiting, covetous grip of Bahadur.
   Kyvon was more prepared for a fight, and he was able to catch the mandalorian off guard. But years and years of experience and agility still won over the element of surprise. The mandalorian caught him on the jaw with his elbow, twisted his arm behind his back, and shoved him aggressively to the ground.
   "That should do it," he said.
   Bahadur giddily handed him the bounty--much more than twenty-five hundred credits--and he strode slowly back to his ship. One hand on the frame of the boarding ramp doorway, he turned around. Kyvon and Corliss were staring at him, anger, vengeance, and even disappointment etched in their expressions.
   "What?" he asked. He cocked his head. "I said I'd get you out alive."
   Minutes later, he was streaking into hyperspace, another mission complete.
   This is the Way.
I love Star Wars, and I really enjoyed watching The Mandalorian! I thought I'd write a piece featuring him. His character is so intriguing and almost attractive haha. I really hope this is enjoyable (besides the crappy foreshadowing and plot twist).
Word count: 1,728

Thank you, thank you, thank you to mia_:) for letting me enter so late!!

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7 Comments
  • mia_:)

    Replying: It doesn't really matter to me; I just wanted to know so that I could tell you which pieces to review? Also, if you feel overwhelmed, it's totally reasonable to make the prize smaller! Reviews and good comments take a lot of time!


    7 months ago
  • joella

    woww this was amazing!!


    7 months ago
  • mia_:)

    Competition results are up!
    https://writetheworld.com/groups/1/shared/164768/version/324122


    7 months ago
  • Eleanor M

    same here!!!


    7 months ago
  • amazing grace

    I love star wars and I can't wait For the next episode of the mandalorian.


    7 months ago
  • Eleanor M

    thank you!!


    7 months ago
  • ElsaRee

    love your style!


    7 months ago