So this is the new capitol planet Hosnian Prime. It reminded Nomi somehow of Coruscant.
After the regular procedure with ground control Dash landed the Outrider smoothly in the assigned docking bay. "Now, we're here, Nomi." His wife sighed.
"Ah c'mon, Darling, let's get this bullshit out of the way."
When the ramp lowered stood in front of it the young officer, whom Nomi knew already from the transmission. He saluted curtly, when he saw the arrivals."Commander Darklighter. Major Rendar.
" Dash hold his hand out. "Major Starr."
Nomi regarded Major Starr and came to realize that she doesn't like him. Too young for his rank and he radiated a certain arrogance. The Jedi shivered.
Upon other terms this guy would have been with the Empire and her enemy. She was pretty sure of this. Nevertheless she smiled at him, when she shook hands with him.
"We're off duty for a long time, Major Starr. We can go without formal titles."
Major Starr shook his head. "My records say otherwise, Commander Darklighter. You and Major Rendar never official took leave."
'Great,' Nomi thought, 'is this arrogant whippersnapper about to accuse us of desertion?'
She was still smiling when she retorted: "If the New Republic bureaucrats has made an effort, they would have found us straightforward. Master Skywalker for example knew that we're on Dagobah.
Instead it was easier to forget about us and to accuse us of desertion now."
Starr shook his head. "Nobody accuses you of anything, Commander Darklighter. We've contacted you, because your space freighter is still in one of our hangars."
Nomi uttered a sound of surprise. She had believed that the freighter was lost during the chaos of the Civil War and the times of upheaval afterwards.
"The Aquarius? Where is she?"
"Please contact ground control, Commander Darklighter." He saluted curtly again and turned to leave.
Nomi beamed with joy: "C'mon Dash, let's go to ground control."
It took a while to find the control room, but then they were finally there. In the room were many human and non-human at the monitors overseeing Hosnian Prime's airspace.
When they entered a light-blonde corpulently man, whom was apparently the born bureaucrat approached them.
He hadn't introduced himself, but from the batch at his chest she learned that his name was Windmaker.
"Ah, I presume you're Commander Darklighter?" He called on Nomi. The Jedi nodded her head.
"Major Starr already notified you to me. Please come with me." He sat down at a monitor and retrieved the data, while Nomi looked over his shoulder.
"Here you are!" He turned and looked at Nomi. "Your freighter is here on Hosnian Prime. Docking bay GL1138." Nomi could hardly believe her luck.
But her joy got a proper ticking-off, when Windmaker continued. "Upon payment of... just a moment," he peered at the monitor, "50,000 credits you can get your ship back now."
Nomi's eyes widened. "What? Are you crazy? For this amount I could buy a new ship!"
Windmaker shrugged. "I can reckon up the sum: Transport, storage, regular maintenance..."
Nomi interrupted him: "But 50,000 credits, I don't have this sum." Dash had joined in and put his hand soothing on his wife's shoulder.
"Let me see to that, Darling." He addressed Windmaker, whom in Dash's eyes lived up to his name. "Listen Windmaker, I think you don't know, to whom you're speaking.
Commander Darklighter is a war heroine. She was a pilot during the attack on the second Death Star and had survived. My wife had flown a vast number of combat missions in behalf of the Alliance..
Windmaker put him off.
"What do you know, Major Rendar, how often I hear such stuff like yours, when it comes to pay the fees?
All the sudden were all of them heroes, who have fought at the front line, because they look for benefits. But I've my instructions."
Dash just boiled over.
"Damn bureaucrat! If it wasn't for the brave men and women whom carried the can, even lost their lives in combat, you would do hard labor in the spice mines of Kessel for the Empire!
I spit on your instructions! If the Alliance had complied with the rules, there wouldn't be a New Republic! You can ask Senator Organa, she can confirm Commander Darklighter's merits!"
Windmaker flinched at Dash's outburst, sweat trickled his forehead. He stammered: "The former senator Organa isn't at Hosnian Prime any longer. Nobody knows where she is, Major Rendar."
He punched data hasty in, till Nomi's file popped up at the monitor. Windmaker read the entries. When he had finished reading he turned around. He appeared nervous.
"Er, Commander Darklighter, I very much apologize. I...I couldn't know... You can pick your freighter up of course. I've missed the notation that there are no fees to pay.
This is the docking bay's access code." He handed Nomi a piece of flimsiplast with a column of figures on it over. Dash looked at him pleased. "There we go!"
Joyful Nomi set off together with Dash to docking bay GL1138. Finally she would see her Aquarius after a very long time.
With a chuckle she remembered how she back then had tried to steal the YT-1300 space freighter on Tatooine. She was already in orbit, when Tarik, the freighter's owner, caught her.
After she had helped him to escape an Imperial patrol, they became partner and prosperous smugglers.
That was long ago. After Empire's end Tarik became ambassador of his home planet Sitti'cus'a IV.
Finally they've reached the docking bay. Nomi entered the access code. The door rose slowly and revealed the Aquarius. Nomi hurried to the ship.
Dash smiled when he saw his wife caress gently the freighter's outer shell. He knew too well her feelings. It was the same for him with the Outrider. He pushed a button and the ramp lowered.
It lowered smoothly, what was surprisingly for such old model. Windmaker hadn't overstated, when he had told about regular maintenance.
Nomi went to the cockpit and checked the instruments and their indexes. All was in good condition. She leaned relaxed backwards. It was as she was at home again.
In this moment her comlink peeped.
"Nomi?" It was her former co-pilot's Tarik voice. Despite the years past, she would have known this voice among thousand other voices. "You must hook up with me, come at 0600 to the embassy."
Nomi asked no questions and answered brusquely: "I'll be there, Tarik."