A/N: Ah, Fett is on the scene! He's soooo cool! Here we go, onward! PS, This is the final chapter; so if you haven't ever reviewed or did maybe once or twice, PLEASE do so now! This is your last chance. So, for the final time on 'Dark Assassin,' ONWARD!
SW Ep. IV: Dark Assassin Ch.38—Challenge
When Fett left the monastery where Jabba had invaded only to claim it as his palace, he was grinning beneath his Mandalorian helmet.
Ah; Solo, your time is up.
Jabba had declared that Solo had more than enough time to pay off his debt, and now the Hutt wanted blood—Solo's.
And while he had turned loose nearly every bounty hunter in the galaxy…he had made it clear to Fett that he expected results from him.
Fett had coolly returned that he'd get them.
Fett never quit a job till it was done.
Much like someone else Fett knew of.
And that someone just happened to be a close friend of Solo's…ergo a call was in order.
He entered his ship and made for the cockpit.
One comm call and endless twists and turns while the call was channeled through a maze of encryptions (so neither the caller nor the receiver could truly track the other) and he heard the voice…the true voice rather of the Specter.
Interesting; he sounded much younger than Fett had expected. He made no sound to indicate his surprise; something must be wrong.
Specter either didn't check the frequency before answering, or he had expected someone else.
No matter; whatever the reason, Specter was off his game. That could only be of use.
But, Fett was a professional first. So, it was time to…negotiate.
He heard teeth clench. "Fett."
"I'm not catching you at a bad time, I hope." Glib; even under the emotionless overtone.
"Any time with you is a bad time, Fett," a pause, "unless you want to hire me to kill someone? An assisted suicide perhaps? I'd even give you a lowered rate."
Fett laughed. He'd never admit it, but he felt a great deal of common ground with the Specter. They were both the best at what they did, did things their own way…and never gave even a centimeter of ground to each other.
No one didn't back down to Fett—except Specter.
Which was why Fett respected him; and he knew Specter respected him too.
Which was why they never stepped on each other's boots.
"I'm a businessman, Specter," Fett answered at length, "a professional, like you."
Specter didn't answer, but Fett could practically see him brooding on the other end.
"And you've got something I want."
A derisive snort. "You're not getting Han."
Cagey, cunning assassin. He gets it in one.
"Not your choice, Specter, for once in his miserable life, Solo's gonna be worth something: credits in my pocket. Jabba's patience has run out."
"I know the feeling."
Fett snickered. "You can't protect him forever, assassin; even Solo wouldn't expect it."
"Han doesn't get a say in this; this is between you and me. And Han's not gonna be your second Mandalorian armor if you tread on my territory."
"And where is your territory?"
"In your case, wherever Han is. Tell Jabba to do the galaxy a favor and feed himself to a Sarlacc. Han is off limits."
Fett's humor had depleted. "I guess deep down we always knew this day would come."
"The galaxy has gotten too small for the two of us, Specter."
"Any particular way you wanna go?"
Fett grinned. "Let's discuss funerals when we meet—and we will meet."
"I'll be too busy killing to discuss anything." His tone was thick with rising anger.
"If you think the galaxy's best assassin can match the galaxy's best bounty hunter," Fett trailed off. "I won't let you get me in my sleep; you'll have to fight in the open—for a change."
"I look forward to it, polish up your armor Fett; I plan to put lots of holes in it—and you."
The comm cut off.
Fett grinned. With the plethora of 'interim channels' the comm had to go through, there was no way to trace Specter, but no matter.
Solo was too loud, conspicuous and well, come on! He walked around with an 8 foot Wookie everywhere he went for galaxy's sake.
And that piece of junk he called a ship was far from subtle.
Fett would find him before anyone else.
He'd get a fat amount of credits for Solo—and even better, get to actually pit his skills in a real challenge against the most infamous assassin in history.
What a battle that would be; Fett shifted in his seat, tingling with anticipation.
You know what? He would polish his armor.
Luke growled in rage as he cut the comm off.
Fett would pay; he'd take Fett's ship apart bit by bit, he'd impale that bounty hunter on his own—
Luke spun around at a noise.
The door was open—
And Han was standing in it.
The expression on his face said all.
"Don't even say it," Luke ground out, pacing to flush out his pent up fury.
"Kid," Han said, placating, "I don't expect you to"—
"Fett said you would say that"—
"I know; I heard, kid. And…he's right. You're not my bodyguard."
Luke's blazing eyes snapped up to him. "I am now," he said with finality.
Han groaned and shifted on his feet. "Kid," he began.
"No, this is not open for discussion; Tank died because I couldn't do anything. You're not going to be next…unless you want me to tell Chewie that—"
"No," Han firmly put in, holding up both hands pleadingly and Luke grinned.
"It's settled then; I'm going to the Fondor shipyards and you're coming with."
"What? How come?"
Luke filled him in on the super-ship and how they had to destroy it before the Imps, namely Vader used it to come after the rebels.
Han made a face. "Kid, this screams: Trap."
Luke nodded, grinning. "Yep, it does."
Han's brows rose at that. "And…what are we gonna do?"
Luke's grin widened. "Why, spring the trap, of course."
He made for the door, hooking an arm through Han's so he had to follow. He sighed, loudly.
Han was usually loud, but at least he was consistent about it.
"All right, fine; let's find Her Worship and then meet up with your spy buddies." He glanced with mock irritation at Luke. "How do you always talk me into coming along on your suicide missions?"
"Because, coming along on this 'suicide' mission will keep you safe."
"Coming along on a suicide mission will keep me safe," Han echoed thoughtfully, "you know, the worst part is, that makes a kind of sense."
They both laughed as they strode down the corridor to the council room.
A/N: Well, guys, this is the end of Ep. IV. This was soooo much fun to write and I'm so happy and flattered that so many ppl from so many nations deigned to join us in our fun and hopefully all enjoyed this fic! An extra thanks to my reviewers, your input and feedback really meant a lot to me, and again, I'm just sooo happy you all came, read and I hope, had lots of fun! Cause that's part of what makes Star Wars great, is that it's fun to read, fun to watch, and just plain fun to enjoy! So, again, millions of thanks and I look forward to seeing you again in Ep. V. As you can see, we'll be joined by Jade and Fett, plus more characters in Ep. V: Jedi Assassin. But, for now, my deepest and humblest thanks again; to all of you, everywhere. This was a GREAT journey and I loved taking it with all of you! Till next we meet, in Ep. V.
May the Force be with you all!
Eversotd, (L.C. Lane)