The following makes reference to a previous document linked here.
Tobin has received an anonymous message in the aftermath of Xerxes’s death. It reads:
Come to the Vallinor Tea Gardens, Hanna City. Tomorrow at midday. Come alone.
Tobin finds the Vallinor Tea Gardens on the outskirts of the city, set atop a cliff face overlooking much of the beach. Winding paths lead back and forth amidst the bushes and flowers from various worlds (including an Alderaanian section), they weave through fountains and connect various clusters of tables together. Many table clusters are surrounded by ornately engraved privacy patricians. Droids flit about carrying various orders to different tables.
Tobin spots Captain Volin in a secluded grove that overlooks the beach. There are two tables in this cluster, surrounded by a privacy patrician. Volin is sat in the one facing the approaching path, apparently reading some filmsiplast notes – he looks like many of the other officials that you’ve spotted taking their lunch in the gardens.
The seat at the table behind him is empty, enabling Tobin to sit back-to-back with Volin, granting him a nice view of the beach.
Tobin swirled in with his rich purple robes around him; without the hood the and the mask for most the Rodian would have seemed like a young diplomat or noble, with his cybernetic arm concealed nicely by a pair of gloves. Tucked under his arm was a hefty book, which detailed an obscure novel from 20 years ago about romance in the Republic, about a clone that settled into a farm. Seemed somewhat appropriate given the renaissance in effect.
Without comment the Rodian set in behind Volin, not speaking immediately but instead taking a moment to admire the long sea view, as someone new to the region would, before he opened his book and began to read, he would leave it a minute, as one always did when taking scope of the environment, before he then began talking. It was a stretch to call it fluent basic, but he at least seemed to attempt to remove all slang from his speech patterns.
“I feel you are either here to congratulate me for taking a few weeks out of my busy schedule for psychological re-assement, which I might add is a wasteful usage of my time.”
He gave pause; to look around to check the other persons before he continued.
“Alternatively you feel like talking about my other posting. 5 months on; my requests have yielded no proof for advancement. It has been frustrating to say the least.”
“How about a bit of both?” he says, “You said you’d level the playing field – you’ve made no progress at all? Well then, that exacerbates your new problem. These evaluations…”
Volin pauses, Tobin can practically hear his eyes furtively checking for observers.
“My concerns for the Squadron have always primarily been related to sanity, and usually I would be glad that you have finally decided to get help. But I have tried to cover for you and run interference for these last 5 months. Only now I find the very concerns I myself raised for months are raised from within the Squadron itself, as your collective mental health spirals out of control. Do you have any idea how serious this is at all?”
“Within the squad?”
The Rodian commented drily then mouthed some obscenity, not wishing to draw attention with foul languge., behind Volin he gave what sounded like visible huff, as he turned over the page. He had vaguely heard something as he was walking away from Dean; he was already factoring in damage control, so This had just made his job 20 times harder and potentially doomed the squad to the same obscurity that Wedge was subjected to.
“You don’t have to tell me, given what happened to Wedge over that whole liberation business. Seems every time I’m absent, even for a day something fun happens, like what happened to Xerxes. Kinda surprised the squad survived a whole two weeks while I were stranded on Gand. Truth be told Kaida is a good operative, but she’s starting to struggle because of the responsibility.”
Squad’s in it’s dying days I feel.
The Rodian fell silent for a few moments from the hushed whispering, casting his gaze around, thankfully a Rodian’s gaze was never oblivious.
“That’s why I’m thinkin’ of changing the game a little. I’m going to apply more vigorously for that promotion and make a few favours. This could create a few fluctuations in the stock market so I’m just asking, iss this position worth so much to you?”
He was referring to the crystal while using other words, a common tactic.
Tobin was curious after all, was he ready for what Tobin would have to do?
There is a long pause, Volin is clearly contemplative. He sighs and half turns his head, so Tobin can see the side of his face, “I fear the hour is later than you realise. Things have gotten politically complex – shooting corpses in briefing rooms and squad members becoming pavement pizza have that effect”.
He starts shuffling around his documents and packing them into a briefcase.
“I came to see you out of courtesy and to check the status of our deal. Unfortunately my hands are being tied. I’ve done what I can to forestall things, but it won’t be enough. Everything hinges on these evaluations”.
He stands up, and turns, appearing as if he’s surveying the view.
“Sincerely, I wish you the best of luck,” Volin mutters out of the side of his mouth, “If you have a play that you think may help, I suggest you utilise it. Whilst I would love to help with the promotion, I fear I will be of little use. I just wanted to be sure you understood what was at stake here”.
The Rodian nodded slowly as he continued reading, he turned the page with his finger as he continued.
“I appreciate that and all that you have done for me. Given that they will very likely arrive at our assets soon, if they haven’t already started doing so already. I’ll just make sure it’s there to recover.”
With that Tobin watched Volin walk off he waited for 5 minutes, finishing the particular chapter before he closed the book and continued on, despite his stiff attire Volin had been a man of his word, with a flick turned his encrypted com to a number he hadn’t used in some time, dialled it.
All I need to do now is for the Bothans to take the crystal from the squad, follow it back to the source and take it and the scanner used to verify it. Hopefully Cassie kept it safe. The information held on that chip might be our only salivation.
“we need to meet now to discuss an exchange. Where are you?”