Transcript: S2 Episode 23- Let’s Get A Caf
Word document download: S2 Episode 23 Let’s Get A Caf
PDF download: S2 Episode 23 Let’s Get A Caf
Read in browser:
Tabletop Squadron Transcript – Season 2, Episode 23:
Let’s Get A Caf
Transcript by Tyler (Twitter: @Tyler_MoonSage)
NICK: Hi everyone, and welcome to Tabletop Squadron, a Star Wars: Edge of the Empire actual play podcast. I’m Nick, your game master. Every other Thursday, our story follows a thief, a bounty hunter, and a slicer as they hunt for galactic treasure, staying away from a bitter rival and growing closer together.
The only announcement I have for this week is: I want to say that Keyna, the Fosh jizz singer from last episode, is a patron-created NPC. Agent Sid, thank you for your long-time support of the show and for making such a fun character for us to play with. We will be seeing Keyna again soon, and we’re all very excited.
Music credit and content warnings are available in the show notes this week.
So now, let’s get into the episode.
NICK: Hello! Welcome to Tabletop Squadron, Episode 23! Really moving right along at a fancy clip at this point. Thanks for sticking with us. I’m your host and game master, Nick. Let’s go around the table and everybody say who you are and who you’re playing today, starting with Hudson.
HUDSON: Hello. I’m Hudson, and I play Tink, a Gigoran slicer.
NICK: Wonderful. Up next we have Lilit.
LILIT: Hello, I am Lilit, and I play Xianna’fan, a Twi’lek smuggler.
NICK: Last but not least we’ve got Cameron.
CAMERON: Hello~ My name is Cameron, and I play Karma Nailo, a Nautolan bounty hunter.
NICK: Wonderful. Before we get started with the recap, let’s do the Destiny Roll~
CAMERON: One dark side.
HUDSON: Two light side.
LILIT: One light side.
NICK: Nice. So it’s three light side, one dark side?
NICK: Perfect. When we last left off, you were all sitting on a curb eating pizza cones having figured out where the gang, the Kemslingers, are located. But that was last night. This morning the sun is rising over a smoggy Coruscant. Karma, you’ve gotten up especially early for your meeting with Keer who you haven’t seen since you were 16. What does your morning routine look like, and has anything changed on account of this meetup?
[peaceful morning music begins]
CAMERON: I think the only real thing that’s changed is that Karma doesn’t arm herself quite so heavily as she normally would. But, she gets up… I feel like Karma’s the type of person to do some stretches right when she’s waking up, kinda get limber for the day. Take a shower. Brush her head tails?
CAMERON: Get dressed, just her standard every-day armor, and then probably just does all of the smaller weapons and doesn’t take the carbine and the sword.
NICK: Okay, so you have between three and seven pistols currently.
CAMERON: And then dramatically ties the headband on and is ready to go out into the world.
[peaceful music ends]
NICK: Awesome. Xianna, you had a long night including a speed-run through several bars collecting data. What does your early morning look like?
LILIT: At the moment Xianna is nowhere to be found on the ship, just silent, like a ghost. Not like the ghost in Sabos’s room though, that ghost is quite loud. Xianna is not missing, just nowhere to be seen.
[peaceful music returns]
NICK: So we see a shot of Xianna’s room. The bed is unmade, but it’s quiet. There’s no one there. Tink, it’s bright and early, and the crew has no definite plans until at least this afternoon when you plan to attack the hideout of the Kemslingers. What are you up to?
HUDSON: In the morning, and my alarm goes off, it’s the sound of a rooster that then breaks down into a guitar solo.
[peaceful music is interrupted by rooster crowing and replaced by rock music]
As that happens, automatically the lights in the room slowly come on like a sunrise.
[peaceful morning music returns]
I get up and I stretch my arms and I yawn, and I walk over to go get some… water for breakfast.
NICK: As you leave your quarters you run into Karma who is on her way out of the ship. The landing ramp has just been lowered.
[peaceful music ends]
HUDSON (as Tink): Ooh, it’s your special day~ … -te.
CAMERON (as Karma): No… No.
HUDSON (as Tink): It’s not a special daaate?
CAMERON (as Karma): No. We discussed this last night, Tink.
HUDSON (as Tink): You can’t tell love when to find you. It’ll just find you.
CAMERON (as Karma): I feel like I can tell love not to find me, though, in particular instances.
HUDSON (as Tink): Love is a sneaky mistress.
CAMERON (as Karma): Um… okay.
HUDSON (as Tink): Good luck with your… meeting.
CAMERON (as Karma): Thank you… Have a good morning.
HUDSON (as Tink): Thanks.
NICK: We see Karma walk down the landing ramp and the ship closes, and Tink, you have the ship to yourself. We cut ahead to Karma approaching the coffee shop. The sun has brightened, but it still struggles to pierce the smog. You’re on a high enough city level where you can see the open sky and are near to an air cleaning tower which causes the nearby area to be more humid than normal for Coruscant. You can see why Keer likes this place. What do you think the coffee shop looks like? Is it large, busy, tucked out of the way?
CAMERON: Probably if it is a chain it’s like a small local family… like it may have multiple locations, but isn’t like a big corporate chain stretching over the galaxy. I think their goal with this coffee shop was just to make it as cozy and comfortable as possible so that you just never leave and just keep drinking coffee for forever. So lots of squishy booths, really comfy-looking chairs with really fancy big backs, probably some swing chairs on the patio.
NICK: You enter the coffee shop and the door rings a cheerful bell. There aren’t very many people here. This place has only been open for a little while. Behind the counter you can see several espresso machines and caf makers, and there’s two Devaronians, a man and a woman, making coffee and in between them making the more fancy lattes and things is a Herglic who takes up a large amount of the real estate. The Herglic waves you in and gives the general gesture for “take a seat wherever you like.”
CAMERON: Karma goes to probably a table that is one of the booths and sits on the side where she is facing the door. It’s probably towards the back of the restaurant.
NICK: Okay. The Herglic walks over and says:
NICK (as Herglic): Normally you would have to order up at the counter, but you’re the only one here right now, so… what can I get you?
CAMERON (as Karma): Could I just have a plain cup of caf, please?
NICK (as Herglic): Yep, absolutely.
CAMERON (as Karma): Thanks.
NICK: So we get a scene of Karma sitting there at this table. She gets her coffee, and it’s quiet, and some people come and go. It’s got that nice comfortable coffee shop murmur. What is Karma thinking about right now? How does she look?
CAMERON: So, probably to anyone who doesn’t know her, probably just looks bored and like she’s waiting for someone. People who know Karma will recognize the small alterations in her gestures and behavior that means that she is stressed, but it’s in a calm way. We’re not panicking, but there’s a lot going on in her head. She’s sitting there, got the caf on one side, sipping it occasionally, has her data pad out, swiping through family photos, and then will occasionally set the tablet down and just hold both hands around the caf mug. Just kind of alternating between those three activities.
NICK: You’re looking through the tablet when the door jingles. I think every time the door opens you look up kind of nervously. And in comes Keer. He looks very familiar. He looks different than he did last night, more formal. He’s wearing his uniform, his head tentacles are tied back, and he smiles brightly at you as he walks over and he slides in.
NICK (as Keer): So, what are you drinking?
CAMERON (as Karma): Caf? Just caf.
NICK (as Keer): Just plain caf.
CAMERON (as Karma): Mm-hmm.
NICK (as Keer): Okay. I think I’ll have one of the same.
NICK: And he gets up and heads to the counter to order. We’re gonna jump back to the ship. Tink, what are you up to on the Afternoon Delight? Xianna is nowhere to be found. Karma is off on a special meeting. You have the ship pretty much to yourself except for HK, and he mostly leaves you alone.
HUDSON (as Tink): Wow, I have the ship to myself…
HUDSON: I rip out a fart.
HUDSON: [makes a long fart sound]
HUDSON (as Tink): Ah… that was good. Alright, what do I do now? Oh, it’s Monday!
HUDSON: Tink walks over to a TV screen in his room and he lays out his mat and he sits crisscross and hits the remote to turn on the TV. It’s his weekly yoga session. He does it to keep his pelvic floor firm and strong.
[meditation music begins]
NICK (as TV): Hello, and welcome to Galactic Yoga with Pearl Sinestra.
NICK: We see a very long and lanky alien with multiple arms that you haven’t seen anything like it except for this particular program, and her arms are waving like kelp frons in the ocean.
NICK (as Pearl): Are you ready to strengthen your internal muscles and your spirit?
NICK: There’s a long pause while she waits for the audience that she can’t hear, because she’s on TV, to respond.
HUDSON (as Tink): Yes… I am.
HUDSON: I take a deep breath.
HUDSON (as Tink): [big raspy inhale]
NICK (as Pearl): That’s great. We’re going to start with one-handed handstands. Please prepare, and make sure you have a crash mat nearby in case you lose consciousness.
NICK: And the music starts to pick up, and we’re gonna cut away from Extreme Spiritual Yoga to Karma again at the coffee shop.
[meditation music ends]
Keer is stirring his coffee and fidgeting. You all have been making small talk for a few minutes.
NICK (as Keer): So… how’s life? We haven’t seen each other in so long. I was hoping to catch up a little. What have you been up to?
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah, so… like I said last night, I’m a bounty hunter, so doing a lot of bounty hunting. I got a crew that I’ve been traveling with for a while now.
NICK (as Keer): Hunting bounties?
CAMERON (as Karma): Well, in our free time, yeah.
NICK (as Keer): So what has the crew been working on? Are you in shipping? Are you in transportation?
CAMERON (as Karma): Uh… let’s say treasure hunting.
NICK (as Keer): Oh, that’s interesting.
CAMERON (as Karma): That’s probably the best descriptor I’m gonna be able to come up with. Treasure hunting with a side of bounty hunting if they happen to be near treasure.
NICK (as Keer): Soldier of fortune type. That’s pretty cool. That’s extremely cool.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah. It’s been fun. It’s interesting. It keeps me on my toes.
NICK (as Keer): So how long have you been doing this? Last I saw you, you were working at security.
CAMERON (as Karma): This meaning bounty hunting or this meaning the treasure hunting, bounty hunting combo?
NICK (as Keer): Both really. I’m just interested to hear what’s happened since we parted ways.
CAMERON (as Karma): So the treasure hunting slash bounty hunting combo… about a year?
NICK (as Keer): Sounds like a pretty long employment, but when did you start bounty hunting in general?
CAMERON (as Karma): Um… so I started apprenticing about 10-11 months after the last time I saw you, I guess. A year-ish. So, started my apprenticeship when I was 17? So a good long while, on the bounty hunting front.
NICK (as Keer): Seems… a little hypocritical of me, I guess, to say that that’s a dangerous job considering I’m in security for the senator. Ugh, whoops, “former” senator. The Senate’s not really a thing anymore, but they don’t like me to call them anything else. They’re still important, you know, since the Senate’s been abolished.
CAMERON (as Karma): Mm-hmm.
NICK (as Keer): But seems like a dangerous thing that you’re doing. What made you decide to become a bounty hunter? You had your whole career in front of you. You could have done anything. What put you down that path?
CAMERON (as Karma): Well, so during my security internship I realized that I was good with a lot of the more weaponry and physical combat areas of the security job, so bounty hunting uses a lot of those same skillsets. I don’t know, it seemed a lot more flexible and freeing and independent, I guess. I felt like I had a lot more control. I could accept the jobs that I wanted. I could decide not to take a job for a while. If I had gone into security that’s not really an option of just “I don’t feel like protecting someone today,” so I needed that flexibility and the freedom there.
NICK (as Keer): I guess that makes sense. You’re pretty independent. That became pretty clear when you never talked to me again.
CAMERON (as Karma): Well, that summer kind of ended with you saying “hey, it’s been great, you’re cool… hopefully we can stay friends,” which kind of felt like a dismissal, so I kinda just went with it.
NICK (as Keer): I don’t rem—Ugh, maybe I did say something like that. Look, you were smart, you’re still smart, and capable, and impressive. You’re out flying a ship with these terrifyingly competent mercenaries. I didn’t think you wanted to have anything to do with me, so I just gave you an out.
CAMERON (as Karma): It felt very much like a shove out, so…
NICK: We see Keer stirring his coffee faster. He’s only really had one sip of coffee, but he’s still jittery. It looks like he had coffee before he ever even got here. He takes a deep sip to buy himself some time, and we cut back to Tink, the terrifyingly competent mercenary. What ridiculous pose is he in for his internally spiritual yoga?
HUDSON: The Endorian Pretzel.
NICK: What does that look like? [laughs]
[meditation music returns]
HUDSON: The Endorian Pretzel is when you have one leg behind your head, dealer’s choice, and you’re trying to rotate slowly while humming to yourself with one hand. You have one leg behind your head for a challenge, the other leg is out for balance, and you’re on one hand spinning onto yourself while humming to yourself.
NICK: The yogi that’s on screen with her multiple arms and willowy frame makes it look really easy. Tink, you have, what, 5 points in Melee?
NICK: So you’re really strong and coordinated, so you’re able to do it, but it looks much more like a feat of athleticism from you, because it is. HK hits a button without announcing himself and your door slides open to show you in this pose.
[meditation music ends]
NICK (as HK): Boss Man, who has done this to you? You appear to be in distress.
HUDSON (as Tink): No HK, this is just yoga. It’s supposed to be relaxing.
NICK (as HK): Yoga is a fearsome foe. Where are they? I will strike them down.
HUDSON (as Tink): No, no, it’s a type of movement. It’s a type of sensual being with one’s self.
NICK: On that note we cut back to Karma. You two have been sitting there in awkward silence, and Keer says:
NICK (as Keer): Okay, so that’s on me, but you could have reached out if you wanted to keep in touch. I gotta say, I’m disappointed.
CAMERON (as Karma): So can we just agree that sometimes teenagers make stupid decisions?
NICK (as Keer): [laughs]
CAMERON (as Karma): In retrospect.
NICK (as Keer): Yeah.
CAMERON (as Karma): And maybe don’t think things through entirely.
NICK (as Keer): I know I wasn’t thinking a lot of things through, but… after I saw you last night I just couldn’t help but think what if we had stayed in touch. You ever think about that?
CAMERON (as Karma): Life would have been very different.
NICK: Karma is looking into the distance and Keer kind of latches onto that.
NICK (as Keer): Yeah, so you know, I worked for Luck for a really long time before she retired. She didn’t talk about it very much, because you know her, her professional life was very separated from her personal life.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah…
NICK (as Keer): She has grandkids.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yes she does.
NICK (as Keer): And I know they’re not just Kismet’s, because I’ve met her. Your… husband must be very lucky.
CAMERON (as Karma): No husband, actually.
NICK (as Keer): Oh… Oh, okay. Cool. Uh… how are your kids? How old are they?
CAMERON (as Karma): Twenty-two.
NICK (as Keer): Twenty-two… No, that can’t—That can’t be right. That would put you as having had them when you were like 16.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yup. That would be accurate. So, good job, math. Yes. Mm-hmm.
NICK (as Keer): Like around the time that we were together.
CAMERON (as Karma): Well, after that.
NICK (as Keer): Oh, okay. Uh… I guess I’m surprised to hear that you found somebody so soon after we were together. I mean, I know it was kinda like an internship fling, but… it felt special at the time.
CAMERON (as Karma): So I never said I found someone else after that…
NICK: And we cut back to the Afternoon Delight to HK and Tink both in ridiculous poses in front of the TV.
[meditation music returns]
NICK (as HK): Boss Man, I do not understand the benefit of these positions. They are straining my joints.
HUDSON (as Tink): If you had blood you’d understand that blood flow has a lot to do with health.
NICK (as HK): Tink, we both know that I have been trying very hard to collect blood for myself, and I don’t appreciate you rubbing it in.
HUDSON (as Tink): I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I know that’s a sensitive subject. I’m just saying, you wouldn’t understand, and I think we’re going into the downturn of this session. I think it’s about over.
NICK: HK is balanced on one hand and one foot and slowly shifts and then falls with a clank, and then stands up very quickly. Kind of like a cat pretending that nothing bad just happened.
NICK (as HK): I do not understand this yoga.
LILIT: Outside the door in the hallway you hear a:
LILIT (as Xianna): Well of course, HK, you can’t do the yoga. You do not have muscles and regular joints and stuff. It does not work for you.
LILIT: And the camera pans out into the hallway, into the lounge area, focuses onto the hot tub with its cover, and it zooms in through the cover of the hot tub, and we see Xianna is sleeping in a very large inner tube that is almost as big as the hot tub.
[bubbling sounds begin]
The hot tub is running. She has the same shudder shades and beaded necklaces as last night. She now has a Bride to Be sash as while there are some remnants of the pizza cone on the coat that somehow have not washed off into the hot tub. Creamsicle is resting on top of Xianna’s head, every so often scampering down, picking up some crumbs of the pizza cone and running back to nibble on them.
[bubbling sounds end]
NICK: [laughs] HK runs out of Tink’s quarters and to the hot tub and speaks through the lid that is closed.
NICK (as HK): Secondary user Xianna, you appear to be trapped within. Do you need assistance?
LILIT (as Xianna): No, I do not think I need assistance. I did this to myself. I can get myself out of it.
NICK (as HK): Okay.
NICK: And HK walks away and seems to move towards a corner for some sort of charging, or maybe he’s just staring at a wall. It’s hard to tell.
HUDSON: Tink walks out of the room.
HUDSON (as Tink): Xianna, what are you—Oh! Okay Xianna, I’m not saying this is you, but I just stepped in someone’s pile of vomit that’s right by the hot tub.
LILIT (as Xianna): Tink, we both know that I do not throw up like that. I have been in here the whole time. I am so pruney. I am just wrinkles from head to toe. It is unbelievable how pruney I am, because I have been in here so long. That is your vomit.
HUDSON (as Tink): I don’t think it’s mine either. Who was—HK?
NICK (as HK): Sarcastic Agreement: Yes. I, the droid, threw up organically, like you weak organics.
LILIT (as Xianna): HK… HK… You must do something for me. You must go onto the ship’s security cameras and play back the footage from last night and see who did the throw up.
NICK (as HK): This seems like an extremely valid use of my time. I will return and report momentarily.
NICK: And HK stalks out of the room.
LILIT (as Xianna): Thank you, HK~
NICK: He is clearly stomping and gives a dismissive wave without looking behind him, which you can’t see because you are locked in a hot tub.
LILIT (as Xianna): Tink, I cannot see HK, but was he giving me a look? It just sounded like he was giving me a look.
HUDSON (as Tink): He gave quite a look, yeah.
LILIT (as Xianna): Okay. Thank you.
NICK: So we cut back to Karma and Keer at the coffee shop, and the coffee has stopped steaming and has been shoved away from Keer, and he’s staring at Karma.
NICK (as Keer): I feel like we’ve been talking around this, and… I would really like to hear you explain what you mean.
CAMERON (as Karma): So, I have twin sons who are 22, and you were the only one that I dated that year.
NICK (as Keer): [deep breath]
CAMERON (as Karma): Remember what I said about teenagers being stupid and making choices?
NICK (as Keer): Yeah. I don’t think you get to necessarily blame teenagers when it’s been, uh, 22 years.
CAMERON (as Karma): Oh no, I’m 100% blaming 16 year old me.
NICK (as Keer): For what?
CAMERON (as Karma): For making the decision that then just continued to get hard and harder and just progressively more difficult to reverse as time went by.
NICK (as Keer): I’m just gonna come out and say it. So the decision was that we—you had kids, I’m the father, and you decided to never tell me?
CAMERON (as Karma): Well, so 16 year old me mostly decided just to never see you again so it would never come up.
NICK (as Keer): But then we saw each other.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yes, and it’s coming up.
NICK (as Keer): [laughs uneasily] Phew… this is a lot to take in. Can I see what they look like…? Do you have a picture?
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah.
CAMERON: Karma lifts up the data pad that was sitting right next to her, presses the button to turn it back on, and it’s on a photo of Karma, Jet and Juke at the most recent Life Day celebration at the Nailo household, and turns it around and slides it across the table towards him.
NICK (as Keer): Oh wow, they’re fully grown. They’re adults. He looks just like you.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah, we get that a lot. The other one looks just like you.
NICK (as Keer): You think so?
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah…
NICK (as Keer): This is a lot to take in. So, did you start bounty hunting to provide for these kids?
CAMERON (as Karma): Mm-hmm!
NICK (as Keer): And, and… they’re okay? Things are okay?
CAMERON (as Karma): Oh yeah, they’re super. They’re both bounty hunters now. It’s kind of a family thing at this point. But yeah, they’re fantastic kids. So, the one on the left is Jet and the one on the right is Juke.
NICK: How is Karma feeling right now?
CAMERON: So this is a conversation that Karma’s known that she needed to have for like 21 years at this point, but it never happened, obviously, before this. But she has been through every possible scenario for how this conversation plays out in her head, probably multiple times at this point.
If we’re going through the flowchart of how the conversation’s going we are currently on the more positive-trending side of the chart, so not as concerned as she could be with how he’s taking it. He seems… He’s taking it at least at a level pace. So, happy about that but also very much hating that this conversation is happening right now.
NICK: And we cut back to the Afternoon Delight. HK is standing in front of the security feed. Tink, did you go with him or are you still by the hot tub?
HUDSON: I don’t think I went with him. I’m still by the hot tub.
NICK: Okay. He’s standing in front of the small booth where all the security feeds run, and we see the crew of the Afternoon Delight come home after their adventure, and see Xianna step back out of her quarters, still dressed for partying, and leave the ship again without anyone noticing. HK fast-forwards some more until the landing ramp goes down and then presses a button and ejects a holo cube. He says…
NICK (as HK): I think I have discovered what happened.
NICK: …and walks back to the hot tub room and slots the holo cube into a projector which starts to fill the room with what happened when Xianna returned.
LILIT: On this grainy footage we see Xianna stumble in. Xianna now has a gigantic veil, just this huge poofy white and gold veil and a big sash that says Bride to Be, and is stumbling in. Does the video have sound or not?
NICK: Yeah, I think so.
LILIT: And she shouts, off-camera:
LILIT (as Xianna): Okie everybody~! It is party time!
[rave music begins]
LILIT: And she claps, and a disco ball comes down from the ceiling, and neon lights start flashing, and the sound system turns on to just a banger of a dance number, and a stream of people come pouring into this room. At least a dozen other people all wearing bridesmaid sashes. There’s somehow three maids of honor and two best men.
LILIT: There’s a whole bunch of other people that do not have sashes either, just at least three dozen people are now crammed in this room partying. One of them is dressed as a clown for some reason, and they are having a grand old time. Somebody brings in a keg, and this continues for quite some time. The tape fast-forwards through just this generic partying until it begins to wind down a little bit, and people are kind of one-by-one leaving the party.
At some point the hot tub had been opened up and people were splashing around in the hot tub, having a great time in there. Someone introduces a pool floaty and inflates it up and throws it into the hot tub. Creamsicle is riding it around for a while as it jostles in the jets of the tub, and as there’s only a few people left Xianna gets into the tub, gets into the ring, picks up Creamsicle and sets her on top of herself, and apparently falls asleep since she kind of stops moving and just slowly spins in a circle as the jets push the tube.
The person dressed as a clown comes over to the hot tub and just throws up all over the floor, into the shag carpeting, everything. Takes a few steps back, looks at it, looks around the room and sees that nobody else was looking, and just leaves. The last people to leave press a button on the wall that turns off the light, retracts the disco ball, shuts off the sound system, and raises the cover back over the Jacuzzi.
[rave music ends]
NICK: Then we see fast-forward of the dark room for quite a while and then we see HK run into the room and we are pretty much caught up back to the present as HK turns the projector off.
LILIT (as Xianna): Wait. HK, Tink, there was a clown?
HUDSON (as Tink): Actually, I recognize that clown. It’s one of the more popular clowns in this part of the galaxy. It’s Pinkie.
LILIT (as Xianna): What do you mean? Pinkie the clown? I don’t remember that.
HUDSON (as Tink): Somehow you got a top-tier clown artist.
LILIT (as Xianna): Are you sure that was the right clown?
HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah. They also double as a magician. They’re Pankie the magician. It’s weird.
[a cat meows loudly]
LILIT (as Xianna): Wait. They have a different stage name from when they are a clown and when they are a magician?
HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah, I mean, it’s two different personas. You would want different names, wouldn’t you?
LILIT (as Xianna): Wait-wait-wait, so it is not the same stage show? It is two different performances on two different nights? Or do you mean it’s like an afternoon matinee performance and then an evening performance?
HUDSON (as Tink): It depends on the gig. I mean, you got him in here. Maybe you have connections now. Look at your phone. Do you have Pinkie in your phone?
LILIT (as Xianna): I don’t have my coms with me.
NICK (as HK): Xianna, we cannot continue this conversation with the lid of a hot tub.
LILIT (as Xianna): I don’t see why not. It is perfectly fine. It is dark and warm in here. It is very comforting. But if you insist, you may release me from the hot tub.
NICK: HK presses a button and the hot tub lid slides back revealing Xianna and Creamsicle.
LILIT: A just massive puff of steam releases when the cover is opened up and you can see that the jets have been on this whole time. Creamsicle is entirely wet, just fur slicked down with water.
LILIT (as Xianna): [weakly] Okay… I should maybe get out of the hot tub.
NICK: [smiling] And we jump back to the coffee shop.
NICK (as Keer): So I’m a dad, I guess, right?
CAMERON: Karma’s just kind of like doing shallow nods, kinda just constantly.
NICK (as Keer): You understand this is a lot to take in… You kinda made my decision for me on if I was gonna be around. You know I would have helped. Like, whatever happened between us that’s something I would have done.
CAMERON (as Karma): So me, adult me, now, yes? But let me walk you through 16 year old Karma’s reasoning here.
NICK (as Keer): Yeah, that sounds good.
CAMERON (as Karma): That now I’ve been dealing with. So, my internship ended. The last conversation we had seemed very much like a dismissal and a termination of that relationship.
So several months later when I found out that I was pregnant, didn’t reach out at that point probably mostly due to hurt, I think? It transformed probably within those first few weeks after I found out to not wanting to tell you as, I don’t know, some sort of retribution for you hurting my feelings by seemingly just breaking up with me and saying goodbye, and that “hey, it’s been fun,” and just making me not feel… relationship worthy? Worthy of an internship fling, but nothing of a continuation past that point. Not worth keeping up long-distance.
Then, from there, morphed into a determination that I didn’t need help and I could do it myself. I think that was mostly in response to the hurt feelings, me deciding that I could have this kid—and then it turned into kids—on my own, and I didn’t need you to be successful there? And then it kind of stayed in that determined independence phase for a good long while.
NICK (as Keer): Twenty-two years.
CAMERON (as Karma): Well no, not that whole time. I’d say we were probably in that phase of thinking for three years or so, so until they were about two and a half.
So I had started bounty hunting, was still very much set on the being able to do everything myself, which wasn’t true. I had fantastic family support, and my dad and Kismet watched the boys whenever I’d go out on a job, so I wasn’t quite as there as I thought I was. But after that point, started to realize that I probably should tell you. Kept putting it off, because… how do you start this conversation?
By the time I decided that I needed to tell you the twins were like four or five and at that point I’d been keeping the secret for that long, so then just kept putting it off, and then at that point it was like well, they’ve grown up… [chuckles] It was just always easier to just avoid this situation.
NICK (as Keer): What if I hadn’t asked you to get coffee? Would you not have told me?
CAMERON (as Karma): I would have.
NICK (as Keer): I guess that’s reassuring.
CAMERON (as Karma): The thing that was really allowing my continuation of avoidance behavior is that I hadn’t seen you.
NICK (as Keer): Hmm.
CAMERON (as Karma): So I could excuse it away, that the opportunity just hadn’t come up.
NICK (as Keer): And we just happened to run into each other. That’s… well. [exhales] Do they know about me?
CAMERON (as Karma): They know that their father was someone who I saw during my internship.
NICK (as Keer): Hmm. Can I meet them…?
CAMERON (as Karma): I think that’s a conversation I have to have with them first.
NICK (as Keer): Okay.
CAMERON (as Karma): They’re adults, they can make their own decisions, but I need them to have the information to be able to make those decisions with the full knowledge of everything.
NICK (as Keer): Well, you have my com number now. I gave it to you yesterday. I hope you’ll pass it along to them, and I hope they want to reach out. I would really like to meet them.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah. I don’t know when the next time I’ll see them is, but… when I do I will talk to them.
NICK (as Keer): You’re not gonna wait 22 years?
CAMERON (as Karma): I don’t know, waiting until they are 44 seems nice. Good round number.
NICK (as Keer): Karma. Karma.
CAMERON (as Karma): Hmm?
NICK (as Keer): No.
CAMERON (as Karma): I’m obviously joking.
NICK (as Keer): I know, it’s just… this is a lot, okay?
CAMERON (as Karma): I know. I’m trying to lighten the mood.
NICK (as Keer): It kind of worked. This is… you know, even with all this, it has been really good to see you, but I gotta go. If you’re still in town in a few days maybe give me a call. I’m gonna get out of here.
NICK: He tosses some credits on the table and stands to leave.
CAMERON (as Karma): Alright.
NICK: The next thing that we see is Karma boarding the ship. What scene does she see as she comes into the main part of the ship? What are Xianna and Tink and HK doing? [chuckles]
HUDSON: I’m a little bit peeved and making a lot of really wide-ranging gestures at Xianna for throwing a party on our ship while I was sleeping and causing a mess in the shag carpeting.
LILIT: Xianna is currently in the large stand-in hair dryer drying off since she had spent an entire evening in a hot tub and is holding Creamsicle in the bust of her jacket with her hands earmuffed over Creamsicle’s ears so it’s not too loud, and you can just hear over the roar of the dryer Xianna screaming.
LILIT (as Xianna): I can’t hear you, Tink!
HUDSON (as Tink): Don’t you act like you can’t hear me!
LILIT (as Xianna): I can’t hear what you are saying at all! The hair dryer, it is too loud! I have to stay in here until I get not pruney! I can’t hear you!
HUDSON (as Tink): Nothing but excuses from you. Ugh!
LILIT (as Xianna): It’s not my fault! I have no idea what you are saying, but if you are mad at me about the throw up, remember that I didn’t do it, the clown did!
NICK: Xianna, your lekku are blowing in the dryer up above your head and HK is standing near the onramp as Karma walks in.
NICK (as HK): Karma, I am glad to see you. There has been an incident on the ship.
CAMERON (as Karma): Um… what incident?
HUDSON (as Tink): Don’t step in it. That incident.
CAMERON (as Karma): What?
HUDSON (as Tink): There’s a pile of vomit over here from an unauthorized, unofficial bachelorette—I don’t know, some type of wedding-related party that came onto our ship that Xianna proctored.
LILIT (as Xianna): I think HK should be the one who cleans it up, because if you think about it he let me have the party by not keeping tabs on everybody!
HUDSON (as Tink): What?
LILIT (as Xianna): He should have been out on patrol!
NICK: HK makes a frustrated and confused gesture between Xianna and karma and Tink and then throws his hands up and stalks out of the room again.
LILIT (as Xianna): Or you can go find the clown! If you find the clown you can make him clean it up!
NICK: On the way out, HK punches the button that turns off the dryer and it sinks back into the floor.
LILIT (as Xianna): Wait! I am still inside the dryer! [becoming muffled] Do not put me up again, that has already happened!
NICK: Does anyone release Xianna?
HUDSON: I go over and release Xianna.
LILIT (as Xianna): Thank you, Tink. We would have been trapped in there for a while. So anyways, um… somebody will clean that up. Karma, how did your date with your baby daddy go?
HUDSON (as Tink): Yeah, how’d your date go?
CAMERON (as Karma): It was about as awkward as one might imagine.
LILIT (as Xianna): Because I am assuming he did not know.
CAMERON (as Karma): Oh, well no.
LILIT (as Xianna): Just based on everything.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah no.
HUDSON (as Tink): Ooh, big oof.
CAMERON (as Karma): Indeed, big oof.
LILIT (as Xianna): Biggest of oofs. But I mean, it went well. Nobody got stabbed, right? Or did you stab?
HUDSON (as Tink): You’re not bleeding.
CAMERON (as Karma): That is true. No one got stabbed.
LILIT (as Xianna): Good. Good.
CAMERON (as Karma): That’s a very positive way to think about it. I’m going to think about it like that now.
LILIT (as Xianna): Yeah. Any important conversation you have with another person where nobody gets stabbed is good, or even an attempted stabbing. I’m not saying that I have attempted to stab people during conversations, just… it happens, you know.
HUDSON (as Tink): So uh, it’s kind of a shot in the dark here, but uh… did he understand why you waited so many years to tell him?
CAMERON (as Karma): [chuckling] Obviously not.
HUDSON (as Tink): Okay. It was just a slight hope there, not a big chance but I had to ask.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah… no, I mean, I explained the stupid decisions that stupid teenagers are prone to make, and then how fixing those decisions just becomes more and more awkward as more time passes… and just not fixing it is the much simpler solution.
HUDSON (as Tink): Ah yes, life lessons for all.
LILIT (as Xianna): I don’t know if that is the correct life lesson, because that is what I would have said.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah.
LILIT (as Xianna): And I feel like I should not be giving the life lessons.
CAMERON (as Karma): Yeah, would not recommend.
LILIT (as Xianna): Because I am currently doing that to like at least three people, so… I feel like everybody else should know better.
CAMERON (as Karma): People who don’t know that you have kids with them?
LILIT (as Xianna): Oh no, I have no kids with nobody.
CAMERON (as Karma): Okay.
LILIT (as Xianna): And nobody has kids with me. Just, I mean like, having important conversations I should be having with people, telling them important things, but just not. Just not ever calling them.
HUDSON (as Tink): Like your tax attorney.
LILIT (as Xianna): I don’t have a tax attorney.
HUDSON (as Tink): Not anymore. You stopped calling them.
CAMERON (as Karma): And technically she’s dead, so…
LILIT (as Xianna): Yeah. I am technically dead and I have never paid taxes.
HUDSON (as Tink): That’s true.
LILIT (as Xianna): Why would I have a tax attorney?
HUDSON (as Tink): Good point. Good point. Well, I’m glad that you’re alive, neutral to sad that it didn’t go as great as it could have, but I’m happy that you’re okay.
CAMERON (as Karma): You know, I honestly do think it went about as well as it could have.
HUDSON (as Tink): Alright! Celebration popsicles then.
LILIT (as Xianna): Okay. First we will have the popsicles, and then after that we go kill the Kemslingers, okay?
HUDSON (as Tink): Oh yeah, them.
CAMERON (as Karma): That will take off some tension. That will make me feel better.
NICK: [laughs] And that’s gonna be the end of the episode.
CAMERON: Thanks for listening to Tabletop Squadron. If you enjoyed our show, please consider leaving a review on your podcast listening app of choice. Reviews help new listeners find the show, and every time we get one the squad does a special secret dance.
If you’re so inclined, you can also help support the show through our Patreon which can be found in the show notes, on our website, and basically anywhere else we post things. We have all sorts of fun Patreon levels including Hot Tub Hangout, a level that gives you access to monthly movie nights with the squad, livestreams, extra Q&A sessions, and bonus extra Discord channels.
Xianna’fan is played by Lilit Penrod. They can be found on Twitter at @cheerio_buffet.
Tink is played by Hudson Jameson. He can be found on Twitter at @hudsonjameson.
Karma Nailo is played by me, Cameron Robertson. You can find me on Twitter at @midnightmusic13.
Our game master is Nick Robertson, and you can find him on Twitter at @alias58.
Our intro song is Space Jam by Pablo Ribot.
Additional music by James Gunter.
Follow the podcast on Twitter and Instagram at @Tabletop_Squad and join our Discord and share all of your cute pet photos with us. We also sometimes talk about Star Wars. You can find the link to join our Discord on our website and in our pinned tweet. See you next time.