S.S. Fawkes - CF-142AC
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Brek's Sinkhole

Posted on Friday August 24th, 2018 @ 11:51 hours by Damien Walker
Edited on on Wednesday August 29th, 2018 @ 21:12 hours

Contract: Smugglers Need Not Apply
Location: Brek's Sinkhole, Promenade, Starbase 72
Timeline: MD 03 - 12:00 hours

It was a type of bar you always seem to find at the deep end of any space station. A dark, distrustful place where hope seems to pass over. The bar had a few dimly lit patrons scattered along its corners, crannies and nooks, some were drinking in silence lost in thought, others were huddled in conversations making silent deals, their eyes glancing nervously around the room. But everywhere hung a still, stale fog with layers dividing the dismal space.

Only real activity was found on the inside of a long bar, where an old Ferengi was cleaning glasses with his wrinkled hands. The bartender eyes were assessing a washed-out patron, sleeping on the bar, hoping for the person to wake up as he had every intention of charging him with sleeping accommodation if he intended to prolong his “activity”.

The patron, whose head was dead set on the steel surface of the bar, made a small moan and opened his eye painfully, just as the Ferengi tried to poke him with a small plasma prod used by the local security detail. The head belonged to Damien Darth or as he was called now Damien Walker. And the head was hurting like a Mugato bite.

Damien slowly opened an eye adjusting its sight on a long line of upturned shoot glasses that were making a small fence along the perimeter of the bar. If it would be up to Damien he would still be sleeping, but his communicator PADD was chiming insistently. He ruffled his head, yawned, waved the Ferengi for another shot and silenced the insisted beeping. He downed the shot and his bleary eyes checked the communicator for the call. Jesses moaned loudly, the displayed name on the communicator jolting his mind in the direction of sobersville at high warp.

“Damn” he signed, saying words unde rhis breath “…already?” Damien picked himself up and slapped his pockets for latinum finding them empty. Another moan escaping him.

“What was that? Check please?! Well you have accumulated quite a large bill yesterday and … from the day before it seems.” Said the Ferengi with a vry smile “That was some celebration you and your friends had”. The alien was handing over a PADD with the displayed amount but in his other hand he was holding a phaser “And don’t you think about running like the last time!”

“When did I ever run from debt” said Damien a vry smile on his face, quickly coming to wits after seening the phaser pointed at him along with the substantial bill. He continued with calm tone opening his palms to enforce the words “You know I am good for it”

“Pfff, rule of acquisition number…” began the big lobed Ferengi, stating another obivouse rule to Damien, who heard them all. Damien hated the Ferengis drive for whealth and disregard for the common fellow. But over the years he slowly developed a liking to this old Ferengi.

“… 18 A Ferengi without profit is no Ferengi at all.” Finished Damien for the old bartender with a smile. Fernegis, thought Damien, so predictable. He put on his best smile further conversation already mapped in his mind “what about rule number 9? Opportunity plus instinct equals profit.”

“Ha, A man is only worth the sum of his possessions” said the Ferengi looking at the scruffy patron “I don’t see no opportunity here” after another accurate assessment he added “or… possessions.”

“Brek” sighed Damien still a smile on his face, knowing full well how to turn the big lobed scruffy alien “How long have you know me? Eh? I have been here for years and you know what I do for a living. You always pointed me in the line of the next job…”

“At a small commission of course” quipped Brek, his lobes tingling.

“A modest commission, naturaly” said Damien. He made a habit of visiting Brek every time he was on station, because Brek had his lobes in all the right places. They planned a job here and there and it was always lucrative. But there was no Ferengi in the universe the would let go of the debt “so how about we make trade?” finished Damien.

“I have just the job for you, it will be…” Began Brek his lips smacking, hands wringgling at the prospect of profit.

Damien waved him away quickly “No job, I am on to something else…” which was a strait lie, Damien had nothing lined up. As a matter of fact, he just finished his post and was looking for a quick way out. A berth, a nice little ship to run its engines, to make his life simple again and forget about everything. He continued,” but the last time I was running on cargo ship I happened to pick up a few tricks on improving the power efficiency of the replicators” he finished and pointed with his eyes to a replicator behind Brek. He let the old Fernegi do the math.

The ferengi lowered his old gnarled phaser and made a small motion with his hands, allowing Damien behind the counter “fine, but my power grid tap of the station drops 10%”

“5!” said Damien with a smile sliding over the counter. He was fast at work over at the replicator. Damien knew there was no way he could make the replicator more efficient, but he could tap a sip of power from nearby power distribution nodes and make a proxy over at the nearby strip club and give that extra to the Breks establishment. To Brek it would seem like it the replicator was spending less, but in reality, he would have more power that have would not have to pay for. If he spread it wide enough nobody would know. A few minutes later the replicator hummed a new shot. Damien downed it and said, “that one is on the house.”

“Pff” Brek outed and checked the power consumption on the terminal along the with the billing. It has truly consumed less than before, his bills would be lower. Ferengi nodded, smacking his lips with a smile “Fine… get out of my lobes… and are you sure you don’t want to hear about that job?”

Damien was already at the door “Thank you Brek” he said tipping imaginary hat “I have my hands full, see you next time” and as he exited the doors he ran into a burly Orion followed by a small fat, bald man.

“Damien” the man said with a smile “I have been looking for you.”

Damien sighed as he was picked up by a big green hand and led to a nearby alcove, away from the imaging devices. It looked like the job found him. “Thomy Pera, how have you been! Its been a while.”

“I have been calling you Damien… calling and calling” said the small bald man with a calm but dangerous smile painted on his face. The Orion beside him was glaring at Damien, no semblance of intellect behind the glare.

“I was just getting back to you…” said Damien, to Thomy a well know enforcer for A'Dana a smuggling queen that ran half of operations on the station. While Thomy was small and weak his appetite for violence was well known, as where his methods. Damien hated the overblow toad, but he was carf not so show it. He knew exactly why he was here. I t was the way of the world, once you sink your toe into the dark cesspit of the criminal universe it was hard to pull back. His last job was especially something he was cutting it close to the line. Damien put his best smile making every effort to be aloof, beside the presence of the green mountain of muscles.

“My boss sends his regards” said Thomy, breaking Damines explanation “Somebody broke into her hangar yesterday.”

Damien shot a blank stare at Thomy, rising his eyebrow “And?”

“And I was wondering if you have any idea… ANY idea who?” said Thomy, nodding to the Orion, who simply grabbed and pushed Damien against the wall, like he was nothing. Damien offered no resistance only a polite smile. He raised his hands and opened palms, signed a little “No, none” sounding bored and disinterested at the same time.

“You see this was a weird robbery” began Thomy as he would not hear Damien “The person let’s say… a guy…” Thomy acted as he was lost in thought for a while “let’s say… a jack of all trades but a talented engineer who knew how we operated.” Thomy nodded to himself satisfied with the explanation “That said person broke in unseen and reassigned one of our containers of replicators to be allotted to a certain vessel which is now well underway, gods now where. We can’t find where a single trace where the shipment was sent. Nada… puff it was simply lost among all the cargos coming and going on the station.”

Damien was pretending to half listen to the man as he full well knew the theatrics must end before he can say something. The station was truly busy, losing a cargo intentionally or unintentionally was no problem.

“Now” said Thomy “The trick is he, …the guy, wanted it to look like a computer glitch, like a cargo manifest error, you know those happen quite a lot on a station of this size.” Thomy sighed and looked at Damien, eyes penetrating him “But I was looking at those glitches for the past year and guess what I found out” he quipped.

Damien shrugged, he knew full well where this was going “Thomy, I have no idea, nor do I care.”

“There was always the same kind of cargo… nothing really valuable, food replicators, spare parts, but mostly food or medicines. It almost looked like someone is making a charity relief effort.” Said Thomy looking at Damien, this time the act was over, Thomies look was menacing, his tone changed. The theatrics were over, Damien knew. This was the moment that he had to play his own drama.

“Thomy, let me go… you know me. You know I don’t care, not for your cargo, not for her ships, her business and definitely not for any charity efforts. Give me a nice girl and a bottle is all I need.” Said Damien almost ending his sentence with a wink. But he knew who he was talking to, the man was no idiot, if he would be he would not be coming to him. No matter how much Damien was putting an act. Damien decided to change his argument to truth” I was fixing her ships for the past year here at her dock, I paid my debt, that’s it I am done. I am off… and I have no bloody idea what her cargo is. I did my job … exemplary, she was happy. I just want to get out, you know that.” Damien’s reply was quick and forceful, he pushed the Orion a bit and after a look from Thomy, the Orion let go of Damien.

Damien fixed his attire “You know what the deal was… don’t you try pinning this fantasy on me. I am going” he said, his smile evaporating from his face. He was not going to be pushed by that little sadist. Damien was ready for anything, he stopped caring a long time ago. Let him unleash his attack dog.

“Not so fast, there is one more thing …” a beep notified Thomy of incoming message, he touched his ear and said underneath his head turning away from Damien “Yes, yes, as you say boss”. Thomy looked up at Damien and sidestepped making room for him to leave. Damien started walking and as he passed, Thomy grabbed him by the elbow.

“I had my eye on you Damien from the beginning, there is something off about you. Can’t quite place my finger on it… but I will one day… and on that day we will talk differently” Thomy hissed.

“That day isn’t today Thomy, not today… goodbye” said Damien and started walking away from the duo. He didn’t feel relived, missing something, he almost wanted for the altercation to happen.

“There weren’t only replicators on that shipment, Damien” said Thomy as an afterthought. To Damien“ and you know how she hates loosing things.”Thomy face turning menacing again.

Damien almost, but didn’t, sidestepped at that information. How did he missed that. He was always careful to not pick her real cargo. Damien turned with a smile “Well you should not get too attached to things, it only leads to disappointment… look at me… a free spirit” he finished with a laugh “nothing tying me down anymore” said Damien with a hint of laughter. He went on his way making a wave at his back, not turning anymore.

But his laugh fell heavy on his hearth, wondering what was on those crates he rerouted to a small independent colony in the outlands. He knew about an orphanage there, who saved children, leftovers after their parents were used to death by big mining companies. They would never know who the benefactor was, but he hoped it would bring some relief to them. He knew this was out of his hands now. He only hoped that Thomy was lying making a ruse to ruffle his feathers. Damien passed the thought, he was to small to control anything, there was always an upper hand.

Disillusioned, Damien reached the main promenade and sat on the main corridor of the station for a while, watching people pass him by, wondering what or where to go next. After a year he longed for the stars. He longed for the simple labour, a small ship to call his own, where overflow of work would banish all those dark thoughts. Engines were simple, life on the other hand had no manual. He waited for minute sitting on the bench in the middle of the promenade. He was about to get up and get himself a cup of coffee as the PADD chimed. A message from A'Dana, his former boss and secret love. Apparently, she lined up a job for him.

She did always look out for him, even when they weren’t together, it was her that saved him all those years ago from the blasted Ferengi Mok. Gave him jobs, helped him along the way. Why was something Damien never fully understood. It was the last year they got romantically involved. Both damaged goods they found something in common, some semblance of hope. In the end they realized, that his nature and her job running a smuggling network, could not mix. So they parted ways. Scratching his head not really caring about the who’s and what’s, he rose penniless, beaten, hungover but not desperate. He smiled, there was something in his future, what he didn’t care, but it could not be worse than this sinkhole he was stuck in for the last year.

 

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