Bake Travnor sipped his Corellian whiskey on the rocks and surveyed the scene at the Steamline Space Tavern. Travnor, a former Rebel and New Republic pilot who had spent 25 years flying X-Wings, A-Wings and Y-Wings on missions across the galaxy, smiled as he noticed the several hundred other patrons at the Steamline were also enjoying the name brand booze. Bake had helped escort the freighter carrying the spirits to the Steamline, a remote watering hole just outside the Aturi Cluster.
“You humans do love Corellian whiskey,” Dans, the two-headed Troig bartender, said from his left head. “When we announced the shipment had docked I thought I would go deaf from all the cheering – and I have four ears.”
“Lew the Hutt wants to see you,” Dans said from his right head.
The veteran pilot finished his drink, setting it back down on the large, horseshoe-shaped wooden bar carefully. Why would the Steamline owner want to see him? His tab was paid and he didn’t think he’d done anything recently to offend Lew; people who upset Lew didn’t last long, especially now as the Tavern Wars raged.
Bake walked slowly back to Lew’s office, which was up a flight of stairs in the long, thin space container that housed the Steamline. The Hut was immense, nearly filling all of the space with his waxen body. From his office he could see his entire operation as Dans and the other bartenders poured drinks and beer.
“Sales are good tonight Bake,” Lew said, chuckling in a rumbling way that reminded the pilot of small asteroid collisions.
“We brought enough to last you awhile, that’s for sure.”
“With the way my customers drink, hardly. I’ll be out in two weeks, maybe sooner.”
Travnor was on the wrong side of fifty, with thinning, close cropped grey hair and a full salt and pepper beard – heavy on the salt – that would never have passed muster in his Rebel pilot days. He smiled at the tavern owner, not sure where this conversation was going.
“You’re quite the pilot, Bake. When you were with Wraith Squadron they said you were as good as Wedge Antilles.”
“I’m not a young man anymore, Lew, but I can still hit what I’m aiming at.”
The Hutt laughed, louder this time.
“I want to you to fly for me – on contract. I need a crew of pilots I can count on from time to time, especially now that the Tavern Wars show no signs of ending.”
Bake squinted as he assessed the Hutt. The noise from the bar down below increased as that night’s band started tuning their guitars and the voices of the customers, loosened up nicely by the whiskey, grew louder.
“Lew I don’t even have my own ship. As you know my gambling habit eats much of the money I do make. And most of the pilots I flew with are either dead or, unlike me, long since retired from taking on dangerous missions.”
The Hutt tossed Bake a small pouch filled with coins.
“Consider that a down payment. And if you fly for me you’ll have an open line of credit at any space casino in this galaxy. And ships are no problem – I can get whatever you like, though I understand you prefer the old T-65 X-Wing.”
Bake nodded and slowly smiled.
“As for pilots,” Lew said. “I assume you can find a few adequate ones downstairs.”
Bake walked to the window and looked below. Yes, there were plenty of decent flyers who made the Steamline a second home. The Hutt’s offer was intriguing.
“Doesn’t a squadron need a name? Maybe the Steamline inebriates?” the pilot joked.
Lew the Hutt produced a bottle of the recently delivered Correllian stash and poured it into a glass, leaving it on a table for Bake.
“You are now the leader of Whiskey Squadron,” he said.
SPECIAL RULES FOR X-WING TAVERN WARS MISSIONS
Whiskey Squadron pilots are pretty relaxed, as they’ve often come straight from the Steamline. This helps them during evasive maneuvers. Players who choose to fly missions under the Whisky Squadron banner may choose a special talent. For 1 point, before each defense roll, a pilot may roll one defense dice. If it comes up as an evade the player may add one extra defense dice to the subsequent defense roll.