Condor's Tale: The Loss of Botar
This is a moment from my past. It's a part I would rather not remember,
but I think that you ought to know about it.
Before Corsair, before I even joined the Alliance, I was drawn
to the life of a mercenary. My only concern was money. I needed
a lot to get the Empire back for killing all my friends and family.
They had taken all I had held dear, so at that time I cared little
about anything other than myself and the revenge I had been planning
The life of a mercenary was lonely. Most in my trade cared only
for one person, themselves. This made it difficult to make friends.
But one mercenary, much like myself, was different. Botar Pryam,
a man from Agamar, stood out from the rest. He made the effort to
become comrades, and that's how I met him. I was sitting there in
a cantina when he came up to me.
"Mind if I sit with you, mate?" he asked me. "I'm Botar. I'll be
one of your wingmen in your next escort mission."
Most our missions consisted of protecting the valuable cargo of
rich merchants from pirates and the Empire. That night, we sat for
hours talking about our pasts and old missions. When we finally
had to leave, it was strangely obvious that we would both be friends
for as long as we worked together. Botar was a bit of a ladies?
man, and had a very active sense of humor that he liked to share
with his friends and colleagues, as well as being someone who? well,
when you were around him, things happened.
I remember once we were in a busy cantina in the heart of Nar Shaddaa.
We had been drinking for about an hour when a couple of 'regulars?
came in. Apparently we were in their seats -- they always sat there
-- and because they were (supposedly) top bounty hunters they advised
us to leave on the double or forfeit our right to live. We had been
drinking for a while then and saw the whole idea of them throwing
us out of our seats laughable? mistake.
The first was a Gran. I hate those, they're so cocky. He was quite
short for his species, but that didn't make him any less dangerous.
His friend, however, was a Trandoshan. Trandoshan bounty hunters
seem to favor Stouker concussion rifles because the lack of a trigger
guard allows them to handle the weapons more easily with their huge
paws. This case was no exception, and as most fighters know, at
close range, you rarely miss with one of them in your hands. Now
normally this would be serious stuff, but for some reason Botar
decided we should teach these guys a lesson. To really show the
Gran up in front of his fellow mercenaries we though it would be
neat to shoot his blaster clear out of his hand before he had chance
After welcoming the new arrivals in his usual charming way he decided
to get things moving by arguing that they should learn how to fight
from real mercenaries like us. As you can guess, it went down well
and it wasn't long before the situation got heated.
Unfortunately Botar's aim was a little off that night because somehow
he managed to blow the Gran's hand clear off. As you can bet his
friend was not amused as he collapsed to the ground in pain. By
some stroke of bad luck the Trandoshan decided to get some payback
on me. I'll tell you now, when you're looking down the barrel of
a concussion rifle you don't get any delusions about living for
much longer. In my case I was extremely lucky? the rifle jammed.
Now I'm no Jedi and I know a second chance when I see one, so when
I saw there was no clear route to the door I didn't hesitate in
running and throwing myself through the window in one giant leap.
I did it just in time because as I rolled clear of the window covered
in cuts and bruises the entire wall blew clear from the cantina;
I figured the Trandoshan must have fired. Apparently he must also
have considered me dead because I then heard Botar trying to reason
Slowly I peered through the rubble to see Botar with a concussion
rifle held at point blank to his head and Botar's own blaster meters
away from him. I drew my own Blastech and ordered the Trandoshan
to drop his rifle. Now this bounty hunter didn't look it, but his
next action showed his complete lack of intelligence. After holding
a weapon to my best friend's head he then turned to face me, turning
his back completely on Botar. Botar didn't need to think twice and
he kicked the Trandoshan as hard as he could where the sun doesn't
shine. He collapsed in agony so we took that as our cue to leave.
Having seen that concussion rifle in action, though, we were both
mightily impressed, so I took it with me and I still use it on occasion
to this day.
Anyway the next six months I knew him, we went on many missions
together (as well as having several violent encounters out of the
cockpit) and became great friends. We had many adventures, including
some narrow escapes from the Empire ? those are other stories altogether
-- but one day there was a mission that proved too much for even
It looked just like any other escort mission, but this one was
different. I only found out afterwards, but the cargo consisted
of vital plans bound for the Rebel Alliance. The Empire had somehow
discovered this and sent a much larger attack force than expected,
and as it turned out, larger than we could deal with.
We came under heavy attack from a group of TIE Interceptors. Our
small escort force, consisting of six Z-95 snubfighters, stood little
chance against the better trained and armed Imperial pilots. The
cargo vessels were in real trouble and we weren't having much success
in holding them all off.
We finally got a hold on the squints, but three of them swung onto
Botar's tail. I was just about to assist when I got a comm message
from the merchant in charge of the convoy.
"You're not paid to help your friends," he said. "Your priority
is to protect my cargo. Now get to it!"
"To hell with you!" I muttered. "Botar, I'm on my way."
"Negative," he replied. "I'll be okay. Protect the cargo, that's
what we get paid for."
Finally, the squints assaulting the convoy broke off, and I went
to assist Botar. Just as I got to him, his ship blew from a missile
hit to the rear, fired from the lead TIE. He hadn't had a chance
to eject, so he was gone.
I couldn't believe it. The feeling didn't last long though, as
I saw red and could think of nothing but revenge. I took out two
as they fled back to their frigate, but the third -- the leader
-- pulled away too quickly and I couldn't keep up.
Dismayed, I returned to our command ship. Once on board, I stormed
straight to the bridge to find the one who had ordered me not to
He was a young Calamari, bold and arrogant (as I thought at the
time). He towered over those under his command and an aura of confidence
shone off him as it does with many great leaders.
"I'm sorry for your loss," he said after I tore into him. "But
the cargo was too important to lose. I realize a loss is never easy
to deal with, but in this case it definitely saved many more."
"The only thing it saved you was money," I blurted, and stormed
I didn't realize this until much later, but he was right. For all
I knew, Botar had died for no reason other than that a selfish,
greedy, merchant had distracted me when my friend needed me most.
In any other mission it would have been true. At least in this case,
Botar had died for a cause. Sometimes though, I still can't help
but think that Botar had died for a few credits, and that it was
my fault for not helping him? surely the rest of the escort force
could have managed without me.
The experience never left me the same though, and every time I
shoot down an Imperial fighter I hope... that just one of those
I shoot down was the pilot that escaped me on that fearful day.