6. Ms. Luan Derhayenne
Date: 135-993 to 136-993 Imperial.
Location: Shanape system (1023), Shanape highport, aboard the free trader Avarice Rewarded.
Meanwhile, back on ship, the Fish glided around poking at the hardware and making lists while Silea ordered supplies and looked for unemployed space medics to interview. The supplies were a problem until Sir David came up with the money from his own pocket. The medics were a problem, period, because there was a war on.
In the end they interviewed two. The first was a port employee, he had a bit of medic skill from his army days and some experience working in planet side hotels and a bit of this and a bit of that and... and he looked OK, if uninspiring. He was on a month's notice at the port authority, and might have a problem shipping out earlier than that. They said "we'll let you know".
The second was a bit odd. She was a full-blown medical doctor, with sixteen years in medical education and acute hospitals behind her, and she should presumably be coming into the prime of her medical career. She'd come up the hard way, indentured to a corporation in return for her training. But she'd somehow bought them out a decade earlier than usual, which meant she was free to quit her job and leave the planet.
And quit she did, and leave she did, on the first grav shuttle to highport where no job awaited her.
They asked why she'd burned her bridges so thoroughly. She said something to the effect that she found life in Shanape "a bit stifling". "The Avaricious", as the owner and crew were beginning to call themselves, took this as a reference to Shanape's level 13 law. The previous charismatic leader had pulled the planet up by two tech levels in fifty years, but his successor couldn't let go of control when the time came. Now everything that wasn't compulsory was illegal. Law enforcement was draconian and intrusive.
They asked how she'd found the money, if she didn't mind telling them. "I invested" she said. "I speculated on the stock market and eventually made enough to buy out my indenture. I did quite well on pharmaceutical stocks."
She asked questions too. What medical facilities were aboard? Would they be getting supplies before departure? Did they intend to carry passengers in low berths? And what would be the terms of her contract?
They said they'd let her know as well, and two hours later they did. That solved the "who buys the speculative cargo" question.
They had a crew, they had a job, and it all got very busy.