"I won't ask again."
The Aqualish coughed and began to pick himself up from where he landed on the dusty ground. 'Blasted fem,' he thought sourly. 'Blasted bounty hunters. Blasted-' His mental diatribe was cut off as he heard an energy cell begin to hum to life behind him, leaving his hairs feeling prickled. He turned slowly, looking up to find a discreet blaster being waved in his face. Nothing terribly intimidating compared to most of the Blastech pieces that everyone seemed to have these days.
Except this was hovering just in front of him, held by someone in full, bright armour. The well-defined Mandalorian helmet was all it took to send him into panic mode, throwing his arms up in front of him and leaning backwards.
("I don't know anything!") He spoke in Aqualish, praying to anyone who listened that she would understand him. The blaster was raised higher, the tip brushing the side of his head, and he was certain he had been forsaken.
"If you don't know, then you're useless to me." Her voice had dropped lower, enough to make his insides freeze, before he frantically remembered the tenant that he had leased an old apartment to around the corner block.
("Wait! You're looking for dissidents, yes?") The blaster wavered and he waited, accepting the silent helmet as a sign to continue. He told her how a gang of sentients had pushed credits into his hands for the space he was renting. And then how they had threatened him not to say anything on fear of death – which didn't stand up to a bounty hunter in full Mandalore equipment.
He didn't dare to breathe when he was done, silently begging her to accept his tale and leave him alone. When he looked up, his prayers had been answered – his shop once again deserted.
The Aqualish didn't spare a second, emptying his safe before climbing into his speeder. He felt a moment's sympathy for the lad who he had rented the room to – a single human who had a look of tiredness to him. But he shook his head and accelerated quicker, eager to put distance between himself and the Mandalore.
It was just the way things were done when you lived in the Empire, he told himself – sometimes someone has to take a fall for someone else, and he had no intention of being that brave fool. Not today. Not for some street rat.
Sabine Wren stalked slowly up the steps of the flats, using the stairwell over the lifts. She still moved quicker and quieter under her own power, and she knew that Rebels would be watching the elevators. Just another thing she had been taught so long ago, when Kanan and Hera and Phoenix Squadron was calling the shots. Before everything was taken away from her, again.
Now, she hunted them – she was swift and stealthy, and used tactics she learned from them, on them. If a local Minister even heard a rumour that there were dissidents in their sector, the army was immediately mobilized. Squadrons of TIE's and Stormtroopers, and even a walker or two to hammer the point home. And if a dozen or so civilians got caught in the crossfire, they were 'acceptable' losses.
In her eyes, Rebels were bad. They upset life for everyone. They endangered everyone. And more than once she had hunted down an extremist who was happy to take down everyone around them to hurt the Empire. She wasn't about to let that happen.
She remembered losing Zeb – the Lasat always so eager to go down fighting, and how they even brought out 'the big guns' to get it done. Sabine found the apartment she was looking for. She swiped the card reader with the pass she had stolen from the Aqualish, and she raised her blasters as she walked inside.
She wasn't expecting to see the back of a Stormtrooper helmet, watching a holo-display of the local news. She crept forward – if her target was the sort who kept and wore trophies of their escapades, she wouldn't give them much of a chance to take hers.
And then she saw the faint ion scoring on the front – enough soot and dings to make the visor impossible to see through, much less watch the news with. A helmet used for target practice-
And decoys. She spun and let a bolt fly, shattering a clock on the wall as something fast and solid rushed into her. The room spun and she felt the ground slamming into her back, enough to rattle her armour and leave her disorientated for a second. Already her attacker was up and moving, faster than she expected, ducking into the shadows.
She cursed in two different languages and brought herself to kneel, raising both pistols. They hadn't disarmed her, and she knew they'd regret that.
"Come out and end it already," she snarled.
"I used to know a Mando like you," a voice answered back, seeming to echo from the various corners of the apartment. Sabine scowled. She didn't need this. She had heard enough sob stories from her targets in the past, and they hadn't rushed her either – just threw themselves at her mercy.
"Should I be impressed?"
"Just careful." She caught a flash of movement out of the corner of her eye and she aimed for the middle, firing another round. There was a crunch and another helmet fell to the ground, this one a TIE pilot. "That's impressive."
"Not here to impress you." Sabine gave the room a sweep, blasters raised.
"Those helmets you Mandalorian's wear do have one big blind spot."
She felt her patience thinning. She wasn't interested in games of Loth-cat and mouse. She wanted it over with.
"And where's that?" The sooner her prey made a slip, the sooner the deed would be done.
"Here." She felt her nose bruise as her helmet was yanked up off her head, seemingly taken from her by the roof of the apartment. Sabine glared up, trying to see her equipment and hearing the footsteps behind her too-late. She turned in time to catch a boot to her abdomen, knocking her backwards and into another room.
"It's a shame," she heard, and she shook her head clear to see the target admiring her helmet. No doubt wanting to add another trophy to their collection. "You remind me of someone, but you can't hold a flame to… Sabine?"
She had brought her wrist gauntlet up, aiming a pocket-sized rocket at her prey before she heard her name. It left her hesitating before she pressed the trigger.
"Give my helmet back," she snarled, eyes narrowing, waiting for even a flicker of deceit to launch her missile. Instead, her familiar helmet was slowly extended to her, a gloved hand holding it out into the lit room.
"Never thought I'd see you with boring brown hair," she heard them say and she frowned. Not that it was true – she had dyed it chestnut brown some time ago, after she began accepting bounty hunter work again. Now though, she wasn't happy to think of who could have known her well enough to-
"You're dead," she said, eyes widening. It wasn't possible. The mop of inky black hair was shorter and messier, but the prominent nose and too big blue eyes were as striking as ever. And the scars on the cheek… Nobody would fake wounds that dumb, she remembered Zeb saying once.
"I didn't get that message." Ezra Bridger squatted down in front of her, offering her helmet. "… I think I liked it better with the paint splats," he hummed, admiring it before she accepted it. "How have you… been?"
She shoved her helmet back into place with one hand, her other bringing a blaster to bear.
"Come quietly," she ordered, voice filtered through her mask. "I mean it. If the Empire thinks for one second that you're alive, they'll incinerate this entire town to get you. And I won't let that happen."
Ezra's elbows came to rest on his knees, exhaling slowly as he regarded her.
"So, that's how you fight your good fight," he said.
"It's how I fight the fight," she snapped, her blaster moving closer. "I know when a battle is impossible to win, Bridger. And how many civilians were butchered because of an 'insurrection?'"
"I seem to remember you were there, too."
She fired, the bolt passing close enough to singe his shoulder, certain he would've felt the heat whiz past his ear.
"I'm not asking you, Rebel." She watched his eyes narrow at her, grateful for her helmet to shield her from the intense stare. She didn't need this – not from someone she thought was long dead. Sabine needed her office. She needed a Corellian ale and a bath and to forget about bounties.
But she didn't leave jobs half finished.
"You'll have to kill me, hunter," Ezra whispered, and Sabine felt hot anger flood her. How dare him! How dare he put her in that situation after-
She raised her blaster and fired, shoving the feeling in her gut back down. The bolt went wide again as he moved and she kicked, feeling her boot hit his leg while she aimed for his chest. She wanted to hurt him for doing this to her. For not being dead already. To appear like some Force ghost out of nowhere and make her shoot him. The son of a-
Her blasters left her hands, yanked free as if on magnets. The Jedi were all gone. Again. That was a fact of life, and she lived it for the past four years. And he just went and disarmed her by using his mind. Bastard.
Sabine yelled, diving forward and grabbing onto him, intent on tackling him to the floor. She felt him twist and shove her off, and the pair tumbled to the ground in a roll. The next move was hers and she slammed her boot into his hip, knocking him off balance enough to crash into a table.
This was her chance, she thought. Grab her weapon, re-arm, and offer one last chance. Remember what the Empire would do just to take him off the map.
"Not today," she heard him breathe into her ear, and a shuttered window burst open. She blinked as light poured in, catching a look at the crouching man beside her, hand extended in what had been a push of the Force against the window. And then he was up, fluid in motion despite any injury. Sabine grabbed her blasters and took aim just in time to see him dive out through the shattered glass.
She ran to the window and looked out, seeing nobody. Not even pedestrians mulling about, and certainly no Ezra Bridger. She slammed her fist against the wall in frustration.
Sabine spent the next few days in her 'office' – a glorified quarters near a garrison where she was able to conduct business from and sleep. She wasn't on the same par as Boba Fett, who often cruised the stars in his own ship while accepting Imperial contracts. But for now she was steadily building a reputation for herself.
If a job needed doing, local leaders turned to 'The Mandalorian,' as she was known. Credits came in. Casualties were down. And her living arrangements were just comfortable enough to distract her from her work without feeling guilty for anything. A spacious fresher with a hot tub was her luxury in life.
But soaking in a bath full of bubbles and oils weren't enough to keep her from turning her brain off. She spent hours engrossed in old reports and files, wondering how it was possible that Ezra had managed to survive what Kanan and Hera and Chopper didn't.
When she got no answers there, her thoughts inevitably turned to what must have happened next. If he had gone on to study under someone else. If he had no choice but to give up becoming a Jedi. How the last few years would have been in the Rebel Alliance. She almost wished she had kept the recording equipment in her helmet – the few glimpses she had of him in the apartment weren't enough of an image to go on.
And when she reminded herself that sitting idly on such thoughts got her nowhere in a hurry, Sabine forced herself to read more reports. Until the words blurred together and she had no choice but to rest, and her thoughts were invaded again. Ghosts haunting her from the old days. Memories of stealing supplies and helping people in Tarkin town.
Of the family she once had.
On day four of being locked in her office, an Imperial courier arrived with a data packet, celebrating a decisive victory against the Rebel dissidents. And The Mandalorian made it clear she didn't want to be disturbed, firing a barrage of warning shots from the doorway.
Ezra swallowed half a bottle of water, fighting the urge to take painkillers for his thumping headache. The dream – the nightmare – was all too real. Visions of burning and suffering, of the ground opening up to swallow everything and everyone. Of billions of people crying and screaming before being extinguished.
He wondered if there was anyone else feeling it. If any other Jedi were out there, wandering the stars, having the same vivid dreams.
"I know you're there," he said to the empty room, not bothering to look up from the kitchen stool he sat upon. An upturned table was propped against the window he had broken, but he wasn't much for entertaining company, anyway.
"Of course you do," the room echoed back, and Ezra quietly wondered if she had calculated his worth. A once-Jedi Padawan, still able to manipulate parts of the Force with ease. It would've been enough to cement a bounty hunter's reputation – probably even score her enough credits to buy a ship and droid of her own.
But the sensation to rise and dodge and defend himself wasn't there. It was just as well, too. His headache wasn't easing up.
"You look like Banthaflop." Sabine strode out of the shadows, arms crossed over the scorched breastplate. It was her first good look at him in years. She had trained herself to capture so many key details about a person – height, weight, and distinguishing features. The tools of any detective or bounty hunter worth their salt. And Ezra had enough of those now, she saw – the pair of scars he had gotten from the Inquisitor had been crossed with another neat slice, leaving his cheek looking like someone had drawn on him. And the sprinkle of stubble could only be a tribute to his Master – black whiskers over his chin, just too sparse to compare with Kanan's little beard.
But most of all, he looked tired. Bright eyes looked a little hollowed out, skin a little paler than before. 'Of course,' she thought. Nobody lasted in the Rebel Alliance. Not without losing everyone and everything. She herself had left before their little crusade had broken her, and it looked like the toll it was taking on him was reaching breaking point, too.
"I didn't know you hunters were so professional," he snarked, scratching the back of his head and looking up at her. She wasn't used to seeing this – Ezra Bridger was dead for the longest of times to her. Some dumb, bright kid who didn't know what he was signing up for. He wasn't meant to be some battered man, seemingly without a plan.
"Come with me quietly," Sabine said. It wasn't a request, but part of her hoped he would treat it as one. "Turn yourself in and you will be treated with mercy." Ezra barked a laugh.
"Do you really believe that?"
No, she didn't – but she didn't have a lot left to believe in, really.
"Alderaan has been destroyed," she said instead, watching the colour drain from his face. He slumped a little harder in his stool, but it wasn't surprise she was seeing. Just resignation. 'He knew.'
"It's a long way to Alderaan," he murmured, and Sabine refused to think back to the time they pestered a transport full of people with Hera's little code phrase.
"It's gone," she said again, feeling something hot in her gut rising upwards. "Don't you get it? An entire planet was destroyed because of the Rebels."
"There were no rebels on Alderaan!" She backpedalled, not expecting this kind of fight in him. Worn out hands slammed down on the durasteel counter, pushing the stool out from beneath him
He was taller than her now, she thought.
"Your 'Princess' had ties to it," she pressed on, eyes narrowing behind her visor.
"Along with a million other Imperials. So get your justification somewhere else."
"You think I need to justify this?" She didn't reach for her blasters, but she did swing at him. Heavy gauntlets aiming at his shoulder, only to pass by as he slid out of the way. She cursed the Jedi anew. "As long as there are dissidents, innocent people will suffer."
Sabine launched her knee upwards, catching his chest and knocking him backwards over the stool. She pounced, landing upon him with her leg pinning his arm, hand ready at her hip to draw.
"And the galaxy will suffer while people stand by and do nothing!" She was unprepared for this kind of anger coming from him. Not from years ago when he was a brat with a stupid crush on her, and not now when he was grown and worn out.
"You will come with me," she said again. "You will surrender yourself and save more lives than you ever would running free."
"Afraid to pull the trigger, Sabine?"
She wanted to hit him. To bash her helmet down into his prominent nose and feel it crunch and splatter red. To hurt him for being so difficult.
"Why are you even here?!" She was snapping, demanding, grabbing his shoulder and shaking his frame against the floor. "Why here and why now? Why, Ezra?!"
His features hardened. He glared at the centre of her visor and it was a relief, because it was infinitely easier to stay angry at him when he had such a bitter look marring his face.
"In three days I'm to leave a dead drop," he muttered. "If I'm still alive. Then I wait for orders."
"You won't be leaving any message for your Rebels." She swore it.
"You'll have to kill me." He was stubborn.
"I will." She was worse.
"Prove it. Look me in the eye and say it, Sabine."
She roared with frustration, yanking her helmet off with one hand and shoving her narrow blaster under his chin with the other.
"Just push me," she hissed. "Do it, Bridger." She felt herself scowling. She hadn't acted so irrationally in years. Ezra's features only softened though, eyes moving over her face, and fresh anger roiled in her chest for making her resort to this.
"I missed you," he whispered. Sabine blinked stinging eyes.
"Surrender," she said again, low and flat and almost pleading. "The longer you're free, the more people will die. And I don't want to have to kill you."
"You don't have to," and she refused to listen. "We can get out of here, Sabine. Just take a ship and-"
"Don't," she said. "Just don't. Don't say we can go back because we can't, Ezra."
"We can go away, you know." She squeezed her eyes shut, willing herself not to listen to him. Sweet, tempting little lies were the primary stock in trade for the Rebel Alliance.
"Nobody can beat them, you know," she muttered, and Sabine shivered when a hand slid down her back.
"Nothing lasts forever. We know that best."
She leaned back, grabbing her helmet and rolling to her feet. She wasn't surprised to see that he was already up when she turned around, giving her one of those patient Jedi looks. 'Did Hera have to put up with these from Kanan?' Sabine shook her head. She hadn't thought about all of them for years, and she had gotten on just fine, she told herself.
"Everything in life is a choice," Ezra said, and she just plain didn't like how old he sounded as he said it. "In three days, I'm due to leave my message. Or you can report seeing a known Jedi accomplice, Sabine."
He turned and she felt her blaster snap upwards, aiming square in the middle of his back. The nerve of him, she seethed. To force such a compromise on her. Nobody told her what her options were. Not anymore. Not him. Her finger rubbed the trigger, telling herself to switch off and just fire.
But she didn't. She couldn't. Not even when he left the room, and she followed a fraction of a moment later to find the next one empty.
Sabine felt frustration claw at her chest and throat.
She spent the next few days in her office, meticulously cleaning her blaster and armour and pointedly ignoring all comms. She refused to think that a few blocks away lived Ezra Bridger, still determined to throw himself under a transport to take down some bucket heads.
And she refused to think of what would happen if she let him go by unchecked. Part of her wished he remained in the past, where she had buried him with Kanan and Hera and Zeb. She didn't need this kind of dilemma on her hands. She didn't want to have to make some blasted choice, handed to her by a criminal Jedi. Let him go and be responsible for whoever was caught in the crossfire? Or take him in, where, she knew, death would be a kindness by the time the Empire was done with him. Both ideas made her sweat and shake and she hated it.
Sabine Wren assembled her equipment on day three, opening the comms for the first time since she had returned to her quarters.
"Inform the Minister," she said as she was connected to the holo-net. "I'm pursuing a level theta target, and require a battalion of Stormtroopers to provide back up." She patted her long-cherished helmet, running her thumb along a score mark and remembering a time when it was splattered with drops of paint.
Ezra slid his blaster into his holster, checking the chrono one last time before turning off the lights. He wasn't sure what he would be expecting - his contact wasn't due to arrive for another day or two, but he couldn't shake the feeling of unease. Some pulling of the Force inside that told him to expect something major and inevitable. Something that would forever change things.
Maybe he really would meet a cadre of Stormtroopers that evening, he thought. He wondered if they'd be joined by- "Sabine?"
He almost didn't recognize her when he opened the door, finding a fem standing there in a simple jumpsuit and togs. But the mousy hair and angular eyes could belong to nobody else.
Sabine shoved him back into the room, walking with purpose and shutting the door behind her. Her hand clutched at his jacket, yanking him forward. She leaned up and kissed him, hard, enough to make their teeth clatter together. But not hard enough to wince or stop. She just clung to him, fisting the front of his shirt while his hand came up to pull at her shoulder length hair.
"I make my own options," she breathed, eyes hooded when she pulled away for air. "And I will not have my regrets haunt me."
Across the other side of the Galaxy, Luke Skywalker flew his X-Wing down the trench of turbolasers, waiting for the fraction of a second he needed to fire his proton torpedoes. Comms chattered in his ear, reminding him just how dangerously close the Death Star was to being able to strike at Yavin IV, before he released the salvo.
The pilot let out a breath he was holding in, lifting out of the trench and closing the s-foils to catch up with Han and Chewie in the Millennium Falcon.
The space station ignited like a supernova in the sky, sending ripples far throughout the Galaxy.
Ezra Bridger didn't notice the tremors in the Force. He was blind and deaf to everything as Sabine wrapped her legs around his waist, peeling her top off her head and leaving her bare against him. Only the faintest afternoon light trickled in through the blinders - enough to throw gold shadows across her bronzed body, leaving her violet eyes almost glowing. She just traced her fingers across his bristly chest, finding ugly pink scars and burns that he had gathered over the years.
"How did you get so many?"
Ezra had to stop and think. It was hard to focus when Sabine's hands were slowly mapping his body, along the front and down the sides of his ribs. It was almost impossible to think right while she was perched on his lap, naked and soft and warm. The gentle slopes of her chest were reflecting light and he could feel the peaks of her nipples brushing against him. To say nothing of the scalding heat he felt lower down, where her damp core hovered above him.
"All in the name of duty," he mused, wondering if he sounded as cool as he hoped, rather than anxious. She arched a fine eyebrow, letting him know it wasn't happening.
"Don't act tough," she hummed, settling her legs tighter around him and tracing another scar that crossed the breadth of his chest. "You're charming enough without it."
"So I am charming, then?" He couldn't help the lilt in his voice, the familiarity of it all. Like they were meant to tease one another.
"Just enough," she confessed. Sabine tilted her head and pulled him close again, brushing her lips against his gently, rhythmically, moaning softly as his hands settled on the swell of her bum and squeezed. She felt him beneath her, firm and warm and pressing against her leg. She didn't even pretend not to notice, wiggling her hips against it and feeling him tense against her.
She knew there was no going back, now, of course. But after everything she had planned and plotted that afternoon, that ship had well and truly sailed.
'No regrets, no going back,' she thought, grabbing his shoulders and digging her heels into him. Tensing up and lifting herself. Sabine felt him press against her. Hard and wide and flat against the lips of her core. She never imagined she'd be here, settled against Ezra's broad and scraped front, feeling herself ghosting just against his cock.
The Mandalorian sank down, feeling herself stretch and shift around his thick muscle, clawing her nails down his back and smothering her satisfied groan as she took him inside her. This… felt good. Felt right. For the first time in a long time, she had a satisfaction that wasn't from hunting other people down. She tightened her legs around his waist, feeling Ezra's hands winding through her chestnut hair and slowly pulling. She melted and purred and shifted against him, feeling him pulse inside her core.
Sabine's fingers clung to his shoulders and she moved, her hips lifting and falling as he panted her name sweetly against her ear.
"This is taking too long." One of the Stormtroopers checked the chrono in their helmet, nodding towards the discreet building across the street. "Why are we even here, Captain? I thought this bounty hunter was a loner."
"Silence in the ranks," the Captain barked. "You've had your briefing. Hunter Wren has found a theta class target. So quit griping and think of the promotions involved."
He didn't like this. The building was too quiet, too dark. There wasn't any sound of life within, even. Which could mean any number of things. Few of them were good.
"Alright, form up," the Captain ordered, making a vague hand signal. "The hunter has had more than enough time to distract or disarm the target. We're assuming the worst and moving to assess. Double time." Plastic-like armour clipped loudly as they marched across the street, pressing themselves against the wall as the Captain keyed in an Imperial override into the lock.
The door whished open and the Stormtroopers moved, flanking the Captain and bringing their blasters to bear. The space inside was dim and devoid of life. Wren had insisted this was where she would be with the target, either in the middle of distracting them or having already incapacitated them.
"Fan out and find them," the Captain commanded, almost immediately being answered by another trooper.
"Sir, here!" He crossed the room, towards a soldier who had been attracted to one of the few sources of light in the room. There on a desktop, under the glow of a lamp, sat the Mandalorian's iconic helmet. Polished to an nth and refurbished.
It made no sense for it to be there and not with the hunter herself.
"Get the lights, now!" The room lit up a moment later, followed by a piercing whine that grew with each second. Dozens upon dozens of red lights began flashing along the walls, pulsing quicker as the noise grew.
"Fall back, now! Fall ba-"
The office of bounty hunter Sabine Wren exploded, shattering windows in adjacent buildings and shaking the foundations of the block. A passing speeder was knocked off its repulsors, careening into a bike as smoke and flames spread into the evening air.
Blocks away, she didn't notice the flash or the shake, or even the sound of her quarters (and life) going up in smoke. Sabine was too far gone, her legs shaking and her toes curling, hands clinging to Ezra's back and hair and gasping for air. Her world existed in tiny pinpricks of light. Of a tongue licking between her breasts and hips bumping against hers. Of hot breaths caressing her neck. Of his length pushing in and out of her wet folds, bringing the Mandalorian to tense and shake and swear.
"Please," she panted, unsure of what she was even asking. She just wanted more, of the sensations, the excitement, the safety she was feeling. More everything. Sabine felt his arms pull her flush against him and they rocked together, awkward and desperate for their release, until her nerves exploded and her vision blurred.
She fell against him shattered, her chest heaving and her legs trembling, feeling herself coming apart as her orgasm tore through her. Sabine pulled her hands through his sweaty hair. Felt him stroke her back. Kiss the side of her neck and face. Whisper sweet terms of endearment that left her feeling like some giddy teenager.
"Hey," she whispered, licking at her dry lips and feeling Ezra gently quake within her sensitive core. "… Want to go again?" She felt him stare at her more than see it, her vision still bursting with little specks of light.
"Are you serious?" he asked, and she smiled at how he sounded so very much like a Lothrat she once knew.
"I want to make up for lost opportunities," Sabine hummed, draping an arm across his sweaty shoulders and pulling him in for another kiss.
Dash Rendar had two lady loves in his life. The first was his ship – a modified Correllian YT-2400 freighter named Outrider, who pulled him out of more scrapes when any other vessel would've scattered him to the stars. And with the exception of the Maw on The Kessel Run, he preferred keeping it out of harm's way.
His second mistress was money. Credits. And for what he was being paid to collect some goods to ship to an iced-over pit of a planet like Hoth, Dash was willing to land the Outrider on an Imperial world like this one. Besides – the news that the Rebel Alliance had blown up a massive space station travelled quickly, and he wasn't surprised to see that the local spaceport was too overworked and understaffed to pay attention to a known smuggler like himself.
Say what you would about the Rebels (and he did – even when they were employing him). The fact was they managed to really stir up the rancor's nest.
"Is the cargo all loaded?" His droid, Leebo, gave a convincing facsimile of a shrug.
"They've stopped loading boxes, if that's what you mean, boss," the droid intoned, and Dash rubbed a stubbled jaw and nodded towards the gangplank.
"Get her ready to fly, then," he muttered. "I want off this rock before our luck changes."
He wasn't a member of any rebellion – not as far as he was concerned. And with the meagre 'instructions' he had been given, he doubted he would be any time soon, either. His spared just enough time in the middle of town to scope out where he was meant to pick up a 'dead drop' – a data wafer or what, he wasn't sure. But he found neither one, which probably didn't bode too well for whoever was stationed here.
On the way back, though, the gutted remains of a building caught his eye. And with the number of people milling around and nodding towards it, Dash guessed that until recently, it was still rather complete. "What happened?" he asked a Rodian.
"Some Mandalorian bounty hunter and a squad of Stormtroopers got blown up," they said, stubby arms mimicking a vague explosive effect. "Heard it all the way down the block. Definitely some strong sabotage, there."
Rendar's mouth formed a thin line and he nodded, returning to the port. Now that the Outrider was refuelled and filled with goodies for his new employers, he was quick to lift off. The YT-2400 rose out of the bay, pivoting on its axis and quickly ascending into space.
From down below, a low, appreciative whistle followed its rise. Ezra Bridger lifted his cap just enough to appreciate the freighter as it took off, before an elbow caught him in the ribs.
"Enough of that, now," Sabine murmured. She ran a hand through her hair – shorter than before and dyed a brilliant shade of aqua and copper. "No way I'm going to start competing with a ship, Bridger."
"You'll never have to," he hummed, slinging an arm across her shoulders. The Mandalorian slid a little closer, leaning against him while they looked up at the incoming shuttles.
"Any idea which one we're after?" she asked. Strictly speaking, they could go anywhere or do anything. It seemed now that both of them was listed as dead, as far as official Imperial records went. Did Ezra want to continue being a member of the Alliance? And she had to admit – hearing that they had destroyed the Death Star did give her some renewed confidence in them.
"Somewhere nice and quiet," Ezra said instead, and she gave him a questioning look. He just grinned and winked, the criss-cross scar on his cheek stretching from the playful gesture. "I think we've done enough – they have their heroes and leaders and agents, now."
Somewhere nice and quiet where they could get away and start new. Sabine nodded. She didn't like the idea.
She loved it.