Shadows rested in the corners of the Rascal Reaver in undisturbed layers. The brass-and-wood bar with scarlet pillows sought to resurrect the atmosphere of ages past and to provide a discreet ambiente to patrons regardless of their occupation.
The structure was a convoluted assembly of narrow rooms and curtained alcoves, spreading akin to the web of a bar-tending spider through the depths of Argus station. It was impossible to overlook the entirety of the winding establishment from any point inside, and the countless exits allowed patrons to come and go as they would.
The most imposing figure was certainly Thronstahl, who kept the pawnshop and private bank associated with the bar; the Bjorndahl towered even behind his massive wooden desk, as you would expect of a saber-tooth bear.
The proprietor was an entirely different entity. Madame Jacqueline was a worldly woman of a peculiar presence, the sort of charm that a cask of priceless whiskey exudes. Legs long as the endless light years between suns, she wore gowns of red and black upon her white fur, the long rabbit ears adorned with a small fortune in gold. The most striking feature were her eyes, deep and dangerous and conspiring at the same time, giving the impression that she didn't care for the world, but you were the one person to receive special treatment. It was her who made the Reaver a neutral ground on the fringe of space. No one dreamed of starting violence at her bar - the crime syndicates and warlords of the Fringe would make sure he suffered.
A purple-haired waitress in a black-blue jumpsuit that flattered her tight figure placed drinks and proper food upon their table, real pork and real beer, courtesy of the extensive agricultural complexes of the frontier station. You had to be self-sufficient in these parts; even the tax collectors didn't come every year. It might have something to do with the natives' tendency to space them, though.
"Miss Eleanor sends her regards; she will arrive within the hour" she chirped, batting her silver-shadowed eyes, and proceeding further.
Below on stage, on classical instruments, a quartet plied its trade, the young women engrossed in the performance, the soft notes wiping away the murmur drifting between the tables, bestowing privacy and a wistful note.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tABGeAcga-M
The erstwhile crew of the Hollen's paged through what they had pulled from Yulo's and Cherenkov's logs, while waiting for their contact. Their niche was cozy, hidden from sight, perfect for clandestine talk.
"I'd bet, not money but just being right, that Cherenkov's contact for the Spice is on Skyline. Look, this mister Flow plays pretty secretive, while the way his messages are misphrased speaks volumes about a Spice habit. A sordid tale of a man eating his merchandize. The goods are late, the mob will be nervous, but the money may be good" Quan assessed confidently, grinning from ear to ear.
"While less adventurous, old Cherenkov had a route to deliver the mundane merchandise planned out, one of them is a group of miners here on Sindar, a short trip down the gravity well."
Irina pondered, then finally opened up about her thoughts: "Cherenkov has been tracking someone from Sindar to the Desdemona; I have reason to believe it was the Daedalus. She figures in some travel logs on his file. There's also quite the file on some Dr. Kraljevic, and that's too professionally compiled to be the work of old Cherry. A xenoarcheologist of some kind, with a penchant for expeditions to the Fringe."
Jerome poked the touchscreen with a frown: "And what about this Carter character? He pops up in both Yulo's and Cherenkov's logs, and sent Yulo two messages recently. One's holds the coordinates to Severus, and one, more recent, is Sindar here, a spot on the northern hemisphere. I detest the shady bastard already."
"I hope you will find me
more to your liking" a red haired, slender woman of almost feline grace with sparking silver eyes interjected. The natural human beauty, symmetrical features, milky skin and large sensitive eye (the other had a patch) re-kindled old memories in Jerome. He smiled, for the young woman did not display any attempts at extravagant body modification, well aware of the generosity of nature towards her.
"I took the liberty of discussing an engagement with your captain. You see, someone has taken what is mine, and I would have it back."