,()()()!


a new market for the Hutts, as Vrath understood matters.

In truth he found it surprising that The Exchange had been able to find a pilot crazy enough to make a run to Coruscant, a world on Imperial lockdown. The Exchange must have had a flier with uncommon skill.

Or uncommon stupidity.

The overhead vidscreen showed the same news footage that every vidscreen and holovid in the galaxy must have been showing: another story on the peace negotiations on Alderaan. A Togruta femaleVrath knew she was a Jedi Master but could not recall her namewas giving an interview. She looked stern, unbowed as she spoke. Vrath could not make out her words. The sound of engines and people made it impossible to hear. He could have activated the auditory implant in his right ear to pick up the vids sound, even through the noise, but he really did not care what the Jedi had to say. He did not care how the war between the Republic and Empire went, so long as he could thread the needle between them and make his credits.

He hoped to retire soon, maybe to Alderaan. If he could take out the engspice, the Hutts would compensate him well. Who knew? Maybe this would be his last job, after which hed get drunk, fat, and old, in that order.

He alternated his attention between the news and the arrivals board until he saw the name he was waiting forRed Dwarf.

He slung the satchel that held his equipment over his shoulder, stood, and walked to the Red Dwarfs landing pad. Lingering among the bustle, he watched unobtrusively as the beat-up freighter set down on the landing pad. He noted the modified engine housings. He suspected Fatman was fast.

He reached into his pack and took the nanodroid dispenser in hand. He ordinarily preferred to use an aerosolized version of the tracking nanos,
  






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