Part 1 of 2
Club Senth. To the citizens of Nar Shaddaa? A place to get drinks, listen to the latest musical hits, and dance their problems away. Run by the enigmatic chiss known only as Blood-Eyes, it sprouted out of seemingly nowhere as a gift to the Duros Sector of the smuggler's moon, bringing with it an otherwise unfamiliar economic and emotional prosperity -- and, as a result, it was accepted by the Republic and both Empires as a good thing. Because of that, the bar also served as a safe-zone for all sides of any conflict on Nar Shaddaa, parlay was commonplace and information brokers were regulars.
But what most did not know was that Club Senth was far more than what its unassuming name implied; it was an egg of rebellion in a turmoil-ridden nest. Blood-Eyes, unbeknownst to law enforcement, was a shadow-kingpin, pushing guns into the hands of those who would stand against oppressive forces. What even less people knew -- even some who worked for the chiss -- was that their main source of funding came directly from Cirsei Altaros, the ex-military crime lord that spearheaded the Krayt's Jaw Cartel.
Weekly profit margins transaction reports were sent to the Dragon Queen; she kept a tight leash on her proxies, and Blood-Eyes was a risky investment. However, to no one's surprise, the chiss cut off all communications with Cirsei following a particularly booming weekend at the club. Not only was he not reporting in, but any attempts to contact him and all of Cirsei's other underlings on Nar Shaddaa were completely ignored.
On the upper level -- the 'VIP Section' -- of Club Senth, where Blood-Eyes observed the goings-on of his club and made his shady dealings, is where Cirsei would find the answer to why.
It was a half hour after the club had closed. The front doors had closed, the music reduced to a dull hum, but the back doors -- per usual -- remained open for prospective buyers and angered crime lords.
Cirsei's combat boots clanked loudly even on the carpeted floor of Club Senth as she, flanked by four guards in black-yellow armor and one bald chiss wearing a dark jacket, stormed into the VIP section to find a grinning, laughing Blood-Eyes swiveling around in his chair to face the woman.
"Cirsei," he said. "It's been too long since we met face to face."
"Considering our predicament, that much is clear," she barked back, blue eyes piercing through the darkness of the room.
A pause. "Predicament? I fail to see the problem." His entourage of guards, in much less flashy black uniforms, tensed their trigger-fingers.
"Then your eyes are too full of blood, asshole."
Chuckling, Blood-Eyes lifted a glass of red wine from a nearby end table and gulped it, drawing out the experience and, consequently, the silent tension pushing the walls of the room until they were about to burst. "I see you've brought friends."
"There are plenty more outside." She responded quickly and without dramatic flair.
The chiss laughed once more, turning his chair to face away from Cirsei. "And what is it you want, my 'queen'?" The last word stung like poison, but Cirsei was immune.
"You know exactly what I want."
"You want me to keep pushing guns for your 'noble' cause."
"Call it noble if you want, Blood-Eyes, but I pay you to give those guns to people that will use them for non-criminal enterprises."
Another pause. He was thinking if he could oppose this woman, though they both knew this conversation only had one outcome. Looking at her directly, he said, "You should stop pretending you can tell me what to do, Cirsei."
Anger surrounded the woman like the the fuzzy tinge of duracrete on a scorching hot day. "Excuse me?"
Blood-Eyes shot up from his chair, approaching the woman. Both his guards and hers tensed, ready to shoot, and both commanders calmed their respective soldiers with a lowering of a hand.
The chiss paced back and forth. "You may think you're hot shit, Altaros, but your only real presence is on a planet where the only export worth a damn is sand. Tatooine has no place in our work anymore. You wouldn't have anything on Rishi were it not that your lapdog -- sorry, lapwolf -- let you say you have ownership of it when we all know who really runs the show. And without people like myself, Thel there, and Cabotta Thorne, you couldn't get shit done on Nar Shaddaa. So if I decide to take a little tax for myself and run things the way I see fit for a while, I'll do it as much as I damn please. Now, I suggest --"
"Shut. Up." Her voice was lower than a dragon's.
He raised his voice. "You do not tell me to --"
"Shut up! Without suppliers like me you couldn't do shit. Stop acting like you have an ounce of control over what you do; the kingpins run the dejarik board, Blood-Eyes, and you're not even an important piece."
"I have new suppliers that'd disagree, Cirsei," he said with a prideful grin. "I have new suppliers that don't give a shit what I do with the guns; only that I move them."
"I gave you this building so that you could do something with it! Fight the Empires! Support goddamn freedom! I took a chance on you, a dealer from the streets; and like every other thug given a chance, you took your star and tried to make a galaxy out of it."
"We're criminals, Cirsei. Whether you like it or not, we ruin lives -- you ruin lives with your greed. Sure, you do it in the name of freeing slaves and fighting oppression, but you still give guns to thugs, drugs to the poor, and abuse your men just like every other kingpin out there!"
Silence. Cirsei merely glared at the man, focusing all of her hatred, anger, and bloodlust into her ice-blue stare. She approached him, slowly, the sound of her boots hitting the floor the only one in the room, until she was close enough to kiss him.
"Greed is a necessary quality for a crime lord," she whispered into him, her smoke-smelling breath permeating the air. "I don't deny for a second that that affects ever gods-damned facet of who I am. But Bogan damn me if I don't fight it every kriffing second I live." A quick draw of her blaster pistol and Blood-Eyes' abdomen found a new hole. His henchmen around the room did not react. One shot does not kill an alpha beast, however, and so she took him by his blue hair, knelt down, and stared into his red eyes, whispering so that no one else could hear. "I find it hilarious when tiny little bugs like you think they have any power over a dragon. Your purpose is to clean my teeth; you get some scraps, I stay running. Do you think you've caused me any trouble other than coming here and biting down on you? Look at your men; I've paid them more than you could ever manage to with the measly shit I toss your way. You're not wrong, though, Blood-Eyes; I wouldn't have a presence anywhere if it weren't for little parasites like you. So that's why I'm eating you and getting a new one."
Cirsei smiled sweetly and snapped with her free hand, commanding one of her guards to begin recording with a holocam. She began to smash the chiss' head against the durasteel, grunting with mania as she did so. His screams filled the room and caused many of the guards to cringe, but she simply turned him over onto his back, used the studded knuckles of her gloves to smash every square inch of Blood-Eyes' face into red pulp, and continued to dig into his skull minutes after he had already died.
She did not stop until she was covered in blood and skin-pulp, and neither did the recording. Breathing heavily as if she had just gone on a run, Cirsei Altaros rose and let out a satisfied sigh, pulling a cigarra from an ornate black case. She lit it, and took one long, single drag before dropping it nearly-whole on the body.
The living chiss in the room looked on with ambivalence. "Shall we start renovating?" he asked.
"Not yet, Thel," she answered as if she hadn't just brutally murdered a man. "First, find out who his suppliers were, and take care of them."
"My pleasure, your majesty." He grinned.
A guard handed Cirsei a cloth, which she merely used to wipe off the excess. The guard asked if there was anyone Cirsei would like him to contact.
"Yeah," she said, smiling to herself. "I think I've got just the psychopath." She looked back at the dead chiss and laughed. "We're all red on the inside, huh?"[/color]
Her laughter was the only sound in the room after that.