The First Sparks

Queen of Air and Darkness

When the team reached Cloud City, Darga had gone to ground. Despite a great deal of investigation, he could not be located.

Comprehensive detective work turned up two facts. That the Tibanna gas he had been selling to the Empire had been obtained on Cloud City and that another large exchange was expected to happen within days and the actual handover would be done at the annual Cloud City Sabaac tournament with both Darga and the Empire sending a representative. Investigations both before and during the competition identified that Darga’s portion of the exchange was a cargo ship full of Tibanna Gas and the Empire’s portion was a transport ship full of slaves and an additional amount of credits.

The team decided to infiltrate the tournament as guards, spectators and competitors. By all accounts they were well-placed to do quite well for themselves in the tournament itself, possibly even coming in the top three.

The tournament, however, ended in fire and blood. I was never able to get a clear account of exactly what lead up to the firefight or who started it, but by the end the Imperial representative, a Navy officer, was dead, Darga’s representative was seriously wounded and Cloud City was under an Imperial lockdown.

Not wanting to be arrested and interrogated, the team fled the casino, heading for a lower-level docking bay where Darga was supposed to be hiding out, pursued by several squads of Stormtroopers. A fire-fight ensued, not much of a surprise there, all things considered. Darga’s behaviour both on Cato Nemoidia and afterwards had seen to that.
Darga’s death however was not the end. The Imperial Navy decided, with Darga dead and their operation exposed, to clean up any evidence by ramming the slave transport with the Tibanna gas cargo ship, aided by a squad of their new Tie Fighters. Fortunately the team were up to the challenge and managed to drive off the Ties, destroy the Tibanna gas hauler and override the slave circuit on the slave transport.

All in all it was a large Imperial operation completely taken apart. At the time, we thought it was a significant victory.

In the weeks and months that followed, the Empire blamed the events on Cloud City on terrorist groups and used it as justification for clamping down further on its people.

Additional fleets were deployed to the Outer Rim sectors to ‘maintain order’ and further restrictions and regulations on ownership of ship-born armaments were added, ostentatiously to reduce the thread of pirate and terrorist groups, though in reality more to ensure that the dominance of the Imperial Navy would not be challenged.


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