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The Sound of Music

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  • The Sound of Music

    Shelle Thorli, local Coronet hypolliope musican, took her place on stage with the rest of the band. She had been fortunate to be able to audition for this group as they were booked out years in advance at most of their venues. Corellia had proven to be just the stop in the galaxy that she needed. After warming up, the musicians gathered and began their set of tunes for the cantina population.

    Cheers from the audience brought a smile to her face. There were quite a few locals that she counted among her newest of friends. She enjoyed getting to know the regulars and visited with them often between sets. Shelle was able to find out a great deal about the underbelly of the city, and this was very beneficial to her survival. She had previously been a freighter pilot and freelance bounty hunter but that had not gone well for her and actually had forced her into hiding. The musician front proved to be a great cover for her as well as an opportunity to gather information.

    Although Corellia was a nice place to work and live, she longed for her home planet of Naboo. The beautiful landscapes and breathtaking architecture never got old to her. Perhaps one day she will be able to return. Her attention returned to the performance as it was time to begin the next set.

  • #2
    The last two sets went off without a hitch and were a big hit with the cantina patrons. The musicians had programmed just the perfect variety of contrast and melody to keep the crowd entertained and even wanting more. After they finished their third encore, Shelle packed away her hypolliope horn cluster and secured it in the back storage room. As she passed by the bartender, he handed her the usual to go package of leftovers and ale. She smiled and tossed some credits his way for his kindness, and then made her way to the residential sector to relax after a long night.

    Shelle was able to afford one of the nicer hotel rooms in the middle of the city, where she was only steps away from food markets and other shopping vendors. She hadn't had much time to explore the city though, with having to squeeze in additional practice time to learn the new repertoire. She sat down at the small desk near the window in her room and gazed outside before enjoying the leftovers.

    As she finished her meal and settled in for the night, she heard a beeping sound coming from her holopad. She hadn't been expecting any communications, so she wondered who was contacting her. Depressing the button on the holopad, Shelle watched and listened as the holographic message played.

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    • #3
      A familiar face shimmered into view, although the figure was disheveled and looked to be a bit beaten up. It was her brother, Card.

      "Shelle... I, uh, got into trouble at the cantina again. I placed a bet I couldn't honor and now they want to take it out of my skin. They told me if I could get someone to pay my debt off for me that they would let me go. I can't tell Mom and Dad, they would disown me. I need your help, Shelle. I need 20,000 credits within 48 hours. Please don't be mad. I know you have saved my hide before, and I had told you that would be the last time. But really, this will be the last time, I promise. Shelle, call me back as soon as you receive this message. I'm in real trouble here..."

      The message ended and her brother's words hung in the air. She stood up from her chair and walked over to look out the hotel room window, deep in thought over the somewhat dire situation with her brother. 20,000 credits would pretty much take her entire paycheck from this gig.

      Luckily, the band's tour had ended last night, and she was on a break for two weeks until the next set of performances were scheduled. Shelle knew what she had to do.

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      • #4
        Shelle sent a message to her brother, letting him know she was on her way. Since she was such a good customer, the hotel gave Shelle a discount rate to keep room while she made a quick trip to Naboo. Packing a small bag, she headed toward the starport where she caught a transport to Theed. It had been some time since she had been home, and it would be good to visit again.

        Shelle realized that her brother didn't want their parents to know, but this was the fifth time that she was going to pay his debts. He obviously needed more help than just credits. She was going to talk to their parents so that they all come up with a plan to get Card the help that he needed in order to avoid any future debt entanglements.

        The trip went smoothly and she arrived on the lush, green world. The beautiful architecture by her lake house brought back fond childhood memories. She smiled, lost in thought and recalling a life so long ago. Shelle stopped by the local transportation site and found a ride to her village. Her parents were expecting her.

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        • #5
          As the transport left Theed, Shelle looked out of the window and marveled at the exquisite architecture and lush landscape. She had forgotten how breathtaking Naboo was and would definitely make it a point to visit more often, preferably under more pleasant circumstances.

          She hadn't told her parents anything about her brother's message but trusted in their wisdom and guidance regarding the circumstances. They had always known just the right thing to say or do. Shelle felt fortunate to have grown up in such a loving and supportive home. She thought back on her childhood and growing up just outside of the large city. Shelle and her brother would each rent a kaadu mount for the day and ride to Theed and back. They never had any specific plans; they just went where they day took them. Sometimes they would even see the royal processional. It was always a grand event with the royal security forces and space fighter corps in attendance.

          The transport stopped and it was time for her to go see her parents. She grabbed her belongings and made her way out and then walked the short distance from the station to her childhood home. It was just how she remembered. Knocking on the door, she activated the retina scan and the door opened wide. She called out to her parents, but they didn't answer. Hm, maybe they were out back attending to the garden. She walked through the living room toward the kitchen.

          As she walked into the kitchen, she saw chairs on the floor and evidence of a struggle with items strewn about the room. Something had happened, and not a good something. Just then, a small light started blinking on the counter across from her. She walked over and picked it up, and as she did, the message began to play.

          Greetings family of Card Thorli. Unfortunately, we cannot locate Card to accept his payment, so we are collecting the debt from his closet relatives. I suggest you bring payment to the cantina in Theed as soon as possible or your parents may not be able to see their children again...

          Shelle ran to the garage, hopped on a swoop bike and started toward Theed. There was no time to waste.‚Äč

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