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 Straight Flush, ONDERON | ATTN: MOLLY
Hadrian Locke
 Posted: Aug 14 2017, 09:03 PM
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Hadrian had mixed feelings about Onderon. On one hand, the last time he’d been here he’d cost the Feds what the Galactic News Network had estimated was around en million credits in public property damages and hospital bills – he’d left some of the poor PDF frakkers only half-dead, which had been downright unmerciful of him. On the other hand, the last time he’d been on Onderon he’d been beaten bloody by a Buckethead apparently made of pure frakking justice in front of a camera drone. The footage had been kept, including the chase that preceded his descent into the land of dreams, and made it onto the Holonet. Frag knew this because Fletcher had somehow gotten his filthy carnie hands on the vid and kept showing it to greenhorns on the Foreigner as some kind of arcane welcoming ritual. No amount of dead bats strewn over the archer’s bunk had managed to dissuade him from continuing in this foolishness.

Still, the night’s work more or less made up for the chequered past in his eyes. Mighty Hat had sent him and Grimm to clean out a Confederate Intelligence colonel and her subordinates who were on a ‘wilderness retreat’, of all things, and the two of them had caught the ol’ black and skulls near Iziz before they could set out. There’d only been ten of them, and they hadn’t seen the rebels coming – hilarious slaughter ensued. Grimm had been the one to bag the colonel, because Hadrian was a gentleman and also because she’d been quicker on the draw, but he’d hatcheted two majors and that was almost as good. He was keeping an officer count these days, in a little journal he kept on the Foreigner. The lock had already been broken twice, which meant he needed to have another ‘conversation’ about personal boundaries that mostly involved him throwing sharp objects in Fletcher’s direction.

They’d made clean work – well, for a given value of clean, there’d been a lot of blood – of it and torched the evidence afterwards without whatever passed for local authorities ever catching their scent. It would be days before anyone realized that the spooks weren’t traipsing around the woods, so they’d taken it easy while waiting for extraction. The outskirts of the only city on Onderon were full of dives that happened to serve alcohol, and no one would be looking at them twice there: the two terrorists had picked the one that looked the least prone to spraying tetanus around and picked a corner where they could sit with their backs to the wall a decent view of the broader room. Considering it was barely an hour past midnight and there’d be no ride coming until a little before dawn, they had time to kill. Bottles were a decent way of doing that, and Molly Grimm had a way of not overly grating on his nerves.

That kind of behaviour should be encouraged.

Cracking open the bottle of Coruscanti brandy he’d forked out too many credits for, the green-eyed man poured himself a fingers and did the same for his companion, sliding the glass over the grimy table.

“I’ve decided, Grimm, that I like working with you,” Hadrian mused.
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Molly Grimm
 Posted: Aug 27 2017, 06:23 PM
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By the time the Feds figured out what was happening, they were already dead. There was no ceremony in their death, no greater purpose, no triumphant last stands. They died where they stood and their bodies burnt afterwards. There was still the hint of smoke on her clothes.

Locke poured a few fingers of brandy and she eyed the amber liquid as it sloshed in the cheap glass. Molly accepted the offering and gave a quick toast of gratitude before gulping half of it back. The tumbler found the table again. She sat back in the corner and kept an eye on the bar out of habit more than the expectation of danger. Their handiwork wouldn't be discovered for a few days and she tacked on a few more for identification. This had been quick and easy, not that Molly was complaining.

It was still early in the evening, but places like this had a habit of lashing out unexpectedly. There was a decent crowd pressing up against the bar and a smattering of occupied tables throughout the floor. Some janky local music played through the speakers. Keeping her drinking hand free, the other remained under the table clutching a pistol in her lap.

“I’ve decided, Grimm, that I like working with you.”

"Lucky me." Murderous tendencies aside, it was probably that she didn't ask questions and could do silence that Locke appreciated. Losing interest in the bar, she glanced back to her drinking companion. Fletcher had been quick to share Locke's newly minted holonet fame with everyone and anyone. He caught Molly one day, and she watched and smirked along with the destruction.

She turned the glass on the weathered tabletop, dirt and grime still under her fingernails. "You're a vicious freller, Locke. And you can take that as a compliment." Never one to savor a vintage, Molly drained the rest of her glass in a gulp. She scowled, and the glass hit the table again.
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Hadrian Locke
 Posted: Sep 24 2017, 04:35 PM
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Grimm toasted him before drinking, which was very mannerly of her. Hadrian replied in kind, the burn of halfway-drinkable brandy down his throat after a kill one of the small pleasures in life. Not as satisfying as the killing itself, but it was a decent cap to an evening where he’d gotten to scratch the itch. Mother Rebellion was always good for that, he’d found. Loran and his cohorts had the freedom-and-justice speeches down pat but they always had a use for people liking him. Overthrowing empires was messy business, especially when you were on the losing side. As a kid Frag had fancied himself a practical sort, the sort that’d go with the winning side, but he’d learned better as he got old. The fights were sweeter if you weren’t supposed to win, if you were scrabbling from one desperate hour to another.

"Lucky me."

The Coruscanti grinned. He probably wouldn’t have liked Major Murder half as much if she gave a frak about what he thought. It always felt safer to work with her than Fletcher, who on odd days could be counted a friend if you squinted hard enough and he managed not to open his mouth for a few moments. Grimm, though, Grimm wasn’t prone to frilly little things like feelings. She was a lot like Hadrian had been, in his good years under the Feds: the thing on a leash the higher-ups let loose when shit went down.

"You're a vicious freller, Locke. And you can take that as a compliment."

The green-eyed man laughed and poured her a drink, then one for himself as well.

“There any other way to take that, Major Murder?” he teased. “You’re a red hand yourself, I’ll tell you no lie. One of the finest I’ve seen, and I’ve seen some damned good ones.”

Eyeing his transparent tumbler, the deserter shook it amusedly before knocking back the drink. Fishing out a pack from his breast pocket, Hadrian nimbly took out a cigarra and saw it lit with a snap of the wrist, lighter flashing. Breathing in the smoke with a little sigh of pleasure, he deigned blow away from his companion in a gesture of good will.

“They probably think the same thing upstairs,” he noted. “You notice we’re only ever paired together when they really want something dead?”

Finding a holoscreen on the side of the table, Frag had the inset ashtray rise from it and flicked ash into it. Glancing at the pack of cigarras he’d left on the table, the Old Perlemian spelled in golden letters across it, he tapped the cardboard and raised an eyebrow.

“One of your poisons?” he asked. “I’m in a giving mood, tonight.”
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Molly Grimm
 Posted: Sep 29 2017, 05:15 PM
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“There any other way to take that, Major Murder?” An eyebrow raised, and a grin grew at his response. Major Murder; she liked that, it summed up everything nicely. Though, she wasn't loosed as often as she used to be, the Alliance kept her busy. “You’re a red hand yourself, I’ll tell you no lie. One of the finest I’ve seen, and I’ve seen some damned good ones.”

Taking up her glass, she toasted him again. This time she took a sip of the half-decent brandy. But what they did today wasn't to be lauded, it was little more than a slaughter of pigs; they even screamed the same. No remorse or guilt over her actions, however; it was delightfully necessary. Helped too that she loved the rush death brought ripping into her chest, there was nothing like it.

“They probably think the same thing upstairs. You notice we’re only ever paired together when they really want something dead?”

"They like a sure thing." She noted in return, the off-the-cuff comment was delivered with a shrug. The shrug deceived, however, because she took pride in her work and a job well done. Few complications on this one and no collateral damage, the targets sufficiently isolated beforehand. Not that complications or collateral damage concerned Molly; just meant more ways a job could go wrong. The mission always came first.

“One of your poisons? I’m in a giving mood, tonight.”

Hunched over her drink, Molly side-eyed Locke as he offered an Old Perlemian from the cardboard pack. A moment of consideration passed, then she waved off the offer. "I'm good."

Seeing Locke in a giving mood, as he called it, was odd. More often than not his black temperament rivaled hers. Molly found that Locke was also more playfully vindictive than she. Locke expressed his displeasure with dead things and devices designed to maim, games she didn't play. Who was worse in that regard was up for debate.

She swigged her brandy, leaving a splash in the bottom of the glass. The holoscreen drew her attention and Molly leant forward, tapping the grimy glass and navigating through a food menu. Her eyebrow raised a moment later, and she made a selection. She then pushed the holoscreen towards Locke.
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Hadrian Locke
 Posted: Oct 16 2017, 04:07 PM
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"They like a sure thing."

She played it off nonchalant and Hadrian laughed quietly. They two of them were cut of the same cloth, as far as he was concerned. The kind of people no leader was really proud of using, but they were needed for empires to run. There was always a place for someone willing to pull triggers in the dark, and Mother Rebellion needed their type more than most for all the pretty words its diplomats whispered into more civilized ears. People like Fletcher and Cheydin were needed as well, those who could look reputable in the right light, but for the uglier work it was the likes of Frag and Major Murder that got the call. The wheels of the revolution occasionally needed a bit of blood, to keep running smoothly.

“No idealists at this table, Grimm,” he grinned. “You can just say you like the killing. I sure as Hells do. It’s not the propaganda vids that keep the lights on.”

His tender offer of carving a sliver of lifespan off with a smoke was considered, but waved off.

"I'm good."

“Your loss,” he shrugged, taking a deep drag.

He blew the smoke into the holoscreen, though he had the manners to wait until Grimm had picked her meal before doing it. A right and proper gentleman, Hadrian was. Let no one tell a different tale. He shook his head to decline a meal, though he eyed what she’d chosen. If there were fries on that plate, he wasn’t above stealing a few. Even if she pulled a knife on him for it, a good bicker with a hardened killer always got the blood flowing. The Coruscanti worked on his brandy, feeling the warmth dip in his veins and further mellow is already mellow mood. It’d been a while since he’d had a good drink in decent company after a proper kill. It was scratching the itch. There was another itch that could have used the same and Molly was certainly a looker, but scuttlebutt was she was a taken woman these days. With Cameron Muse, of all people. That was too juicy a morsel not to poke at.

“So you and Muse, I hear,” he drawled, raising an eyebrow. “You have a thing for whimpering?”
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Molly Grimm
 Posted: Jul 11 2018, 04:50 PM
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“No idealists at this table, Grimm. You can just say you like the killing. I sure as Hells do. It’s not the propaganda vids that keep the lights on.”

A cruel and dangerous smile rose to her lips. Yeah, she liked the killing, liked the power; liked the brutal dance of death. Taking a life was exnihilating in a way she never could explain, or ever tried to. She liked the gamble, pitting her skill against another in the only contest that mattered. Sparring only got so far.

More than just the mindless slaughter of a psychopath with an axe to grind, was the knowledge her actions mattered; that she mattered. Molly could kill for anyone; her skillset was always in demand. But she chose to ply her trade for the Alliance. The murderer shared Locke's unspoken views on Mother Rebellion. Their kind lurked the shadows, doing what needed to be done while diplomats nattered. She wouldn't have it any other way.

“So you and Muse, I hear. You have a thing for whimpering?”

Molly raised an eyebrow and her expression darkened. It wasn't a secret, but she'd not gone out of her way to share the news. Apparently, who she frelled on the regular was worthy of gossip. Her paranoid side gnashed its teeth. The whimpering got to her, and Molly shook a knowing smile from her lips.

Muse cultivated his reputation better than she did. He was a sniveling coward to the galaxy. He chose to show that face, but it was a frelling lie. Molly knew better than anyone his strength.

"Yeah, the whimpering really does it for me." She rolled her eyes and cracked a lopsided grin. The last of the brandy in her glass disappeared down her throat. "More to him than you give him credit for."
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