Lower Coruscant isn't very pretty like some of the more affluent areas, and is filled with the lower rungs of society. The muggers, the beggars, the gamblers, those ne'er-do-wells. Vermin scuttle about the darkened streets, darting from one pile of trash to another.
Certainly not the greatest place to hang around, certainly, but if you simply can't afford to live in the upper tiers of the city, or you really needed or wanted to avoid the police...it doesn't get much better than this.
Ryn is actually pretty at home here, considering she hasn't visited Coruscant in a while. She lived here for more than a year, helping out in the free clinic, so she knows some of the locals. She also knows that these unfortunate folks are people, too, and treats them as such.
So she's pretty easy to deal with as she makes her way through the passages, showing her little holoimage of this Valerian and asking around. "Please excuse me. I'm looking for this man. Have you seen him?"
Ryn's familiarity with the Labyrinth, and her favored relationships with the people here are certainly helpful to her search. So it doesn't take long for her to run across an old friend or acquaintance who happened to see him.
"Oh, yeah. I think I saw him a few hours ago, he was headed in there." And she is pointed toward a particularly rowdy bar/casino joint down the street.
"I see. Thanks, Jovi. Treat you to dinner this evening, if this doesn't take me offworld," Ryn promises, giving her friend a smile and heading for the casino tapcafe. Well, this should be interesting...
It's not a long walk, at least. She steps through the open front doorway and inside, pausing to let her eyes adjust to the dimmer light.
The place is about as much of a dive as one might expect from Lower Coruscant. It seems to be a pretty popular destination for the locals, though, as it is fairly crowded. The bar is a straight shot ahead of the front doors, with quite a few patrons sitting at it.
Gambling machines line the walls, and the rest of the room is filled with card tables and holotables with more gambling games. There are all kinds of different sorts around here from all around the galaxy. Due to the crowds, it's also quite loud, with lots of shouting and catcalling over the wealth of high-stakes games going on.
Glad to see security is more of an expectation than a reality, Ryn steps deeper within, up to the bar. She signals the bartender, ordering a glass of spiced lum on the rocks. Once it arrives, she shows the holoimage. "I'm looking for a man, looks like this. Have you seen him?"
The bartender is quick to get Ryn's order served up, despite how busy things seem to be. He peers at the holo, rubbing his chin. "Hmmm. He dun look like any of the regulars, that's for sure. But with how busy we've been, plenty of new faces around. Most of 'em are here for the games. Maybe try the card tables?" he suggests helpfully, gesturing out toward the casino area.
As he does so, a commotion of shouting rises from a table near the back corner. It seems that one has the louder bunch!
Ryn nods, shutting off the holoimager. "Thanks. I'll check," she promises, just in time to hear the commotion begin. She mutters something under her breath in Old Corellian and moves that way, one hand close to her blaster.
As Ryn approaches the table where the disturbance is occurring, she'd notice that it's one of the more crowded tables. About a dozen people of many different shapes and sizes are gathered around with cards, dice, and a pile of credits and other valuables in the middle. There are also other piles of money beside each player--these piles are of varying sizes.
One guy though, seems to have by far the largest pile out of everyone. And he seems to be the one at the center of all the aggro, here. It looks like maybe a human, but he's wearing a hooded cloak so it's hard to tell at first.
That is, until a bulkier Dowutin male picks him up by the collar, causing the hood to fall away. Yep, that's definitely the kid in the holo...
"You scrawny womp rat, you've been using Jedi tricks to turn the dice, haven't you?!"
"Wha--n-no! I'm not even a Jedi, I swear!"
"Oh yeah?! Then what's -this-?!" Another angry patron exclaims, holding up what is obviously a lightsaber.
Sighing, Ryn slips her own lightsaber from its sleeve. "Excuse me... I'm sure this can be straightened out," she says, looking between the two irritated patrons, and giving a warning glare to Valerian. "It really isn't a serious problem. My young friend can pay you back what he's won, and bygones can be bygones, yes?" she says, hoping so. And quite possibly underestimating just how angry these two are...
"H-hey! Give that back! I--!" Val exclaims as the other patron, a Duros, waves it in the air angrily.
But then Ryn intervenes, and the two gamblers as well as the rest of the table turn toward her as she speaks. The Dowutin glares at her, still not putting the younger Jedi down. "He a relation of yours or what?" he asks gruffly.
Val shakes his head fervently at Ryn's suggestion that he pay back the winnings. "What? No! I -need- the money, and I won it fairly!" he insists. But Ryn can definitely tell, he's lying and he knows he did what the others are accusing him of.
[DICE ROLL] Ryn rolls Persuasion for a moderate success (14)
"Bratty little brother, in all but blood," Ryn replies, smiling wryly. "So if you'll kindly return his weapon, he'll return the money, and we'll be on our way."
She shadows another warning glare at Valerian. If she leaves, he's toast, and they both know it. So it'd really be in his best interests to play along, whether he needs the money or not.
There's a tense moment of silence, as the Dowutin looks back to Val, then at all the others, then back at Ryn. Several patrons mutter some inaudible curses, and finally he puts the kid down, grumbling. "Hmph. Fine." The saber is returned, and Val begrudgingly returns the illegitimate winnings to their original owners.
Still, no one's in the mood for gambling any more, and certainly not with a -cheater-, so the rest of the table just sort of storms off and leaves the bar, fuming.
Val watches them leave, then sighs heavily and slumps back into his seat, slipping the lightsaber back into its sleeve. "-Great-." he mutters.
"Be glad they didn't remove your ankles by way of your ears," Ryn says, patting his shoulder. "This is a rough crowd down here. Besides, you're not supposed to be using the Force for personal gain."
She takes a seat, patting the chair beside her. "Let's talk. What are you doing in a gambling den in this part of Coruscant, anyway?"
[DICE ROLL] You roll Observation [Skill dice (4 + 6)+ Wild dice (3) + Pips (2)] for a moderate success (15)
[DICE ROLL] You roll Sense Motive [Skill dice (4 + 4)+ Wild dice (1) + Pips (2)] for a moderate success (11)
[COMPLICATION] The GM may keep this roll, make the character suffer a complication, or subtract 4.
"Ugh, I -know- that, it's not for personal gain!" Val insists vehemently, pouting. "Hmph." he folds his arms. "I'm not telling." It's complicated, okay? "Were you looking for me, or something? Or did you just -happen- to be in the mood to play 'big sister'?" he questions, quirking a brow at her.
Ryn rolls her eyes in a very big-sisterly way, but she's not /that/ annoyed. "I /was/ looking for you. The way that supervisor on the surface talked, you'd had something to do with some property damage up there. I came to get your side of the story," she says with perfect sincerity. Though, the way her pants pockets are stuffed, she might have done some 'personal gain' herself in the recent past. They're zippered, so picking them is out. Still, she's off her guard....
She looks around the room. "So if you're not using the Force for personal gain, what are you using it for? Never mind the ethical questions."
"Supervisor on the surface?" Val frowns, then sighs deeply, leaning back in the seat and staring at the ceiling. "They sent you after me, didn't they." He straightens back up, peering at those very full-looking pockets. Yep, definitely credits in there. There is a bit of temptation, certainly, to try pickpocketing her--after all, it is something he has some experience doing. But he thinks better of it.
"Yeah, I crashed a speeder into some storage unit at Westport. I paid what I could, and so did some other Jedi, but apparently that wasn't all of it. I said I would pay when I could but they kept insisting I do it immediately! I didn't know what else to do, so I came down here to see if I could just win a bunch." he shrugs.
"Like I said, I came to get your side of it," Ryn replies. "That guy up there looked to have a big mouth, and wasn't too careful about what came out of it. He struck me as not entirely honest, in other words. So I figure he told most of the truth, but wasn't above some stretching. So I figured I'd see what /you/ said." She frowns. "But I'm no bounty hunter. I'm not turning you over to him."
"Well there you go. That's my side of it." Val says.
"Oh? If not a bounty hunter, then who are you?" he asks, watching her curiously. "And what were you planning on doing, once you'd gotten both versions of things?"
"Well, if what you said lined up much with what /he/ said, I was going to help you with the money situation," Ryn replies, shrugging. "I'm technically a Jedi too, ya know. We help each other, when we can. I race swoops. I can relate to crashing. But we need a plan... preferably one that doesn't involve dice, or chance cubes."
Val scoffs slightly. "Oh, yeah? It was some Muun guy wasn't it? And what -did- he say?" he asks, though he perks up at the mention of racing. "Oooh, racing?"
He sighs again. Yeah, a plan. "Ugh, I guess, well the one I had just now was going just -fine- until someone noticed my lightsaber..." he mutters.
"Yeah... I'd suggest not going with that plan. It's too easy to get caught," Ryn says, with the weight of experience in her voice. "I don't recall /exactly/, but I suspect he exaggerated the amount of credits you owe the company."
She gestures to the door. "Let's talk about it on the way to the clinic. That guy who was choking you wasn't playing; you probably need your neck looked at. Take it from me, neck injuries aren't anything to take lightly."