They traveled past the Scout Troopers in a wide skirting pattern, and continued on their way, this time with Saris in the lead. After moving for some time, the Naval trooper stopped to do a quick scan of the area before turning and asking Galvin his opinion on their next move. This was where their differing expertise came into play. While Saris seemed to be an expert on urban operations and close quarters fighting, Galvin, as a Pathfinder, was more trained in open areas and stealthy, ranged engagements, if engagements happened at all. SpecForce Pathfinders were inserted, as Galvin was now, to gather information for follow-on forces to use, and often that required them to find suitable landing areas for troops coming from orbit; a unit of any reasonable size would never be able to land in a city, and so Galvin's missions more often than not had him out in the wilderness, as he was now. He was comfortable in the city, conducting urban reconnaissance, but his true value to the team lay in rural environments.
"Well I need to do some reconnaissance of this forest," said Galvin, kneeling down and taking out his datapad. "There are a few things here which I'm supposed to check out. The first is a series of sensors which were placed by the dissident cell while Major Rudder was here; we're supposed to see if they're still active and if the Army and Navy will be able to tap into them once they get here. It's not too far from here. The second is a large open area about two klicks from the city, about a klick from us, that may be able to be used as a DZ/LZ." He paused and said, "Once we do those two things, from my intel reports we should be able to head straight in towards the city. The forest borders onto the Industrial sectors, so we'll be able to blend in easily with all the workers as the sun comes up and they go to work. What do you think?"
" Sounds good, gets us in the city, and no one notices. " said Saris, he had another scan of the area before he continued, weary of praying eyes. " However, that brings up the question of why not just hack into a spy satellite then see the sites from orbit. I could do that for you in about five minutes. " Saris looked at Galvin, he could tell he wasn't a technology kind of person. " But I guess, you'd want to check those locations out any ways, wouldn't you? "
Galvin nodded. "A satellite scan could give a pretty accurate rendition of the DZ/LZ, but nothing beats getting human eyes on," he said. "As for the sensors, it would be difficult to get any good reading on how functional they are without actually getting your hands on them, especially due to the forest canopy." He placed his datapad back into his assault pack and stood up. "Alright, let's move out." He took point this time, allowing Saris to fall in behind him, spread out and offset to disperse themselves for both being targeted and returning fire, if it came to that. Within twenty minutes, they had traveled almost five hundred meters by Galvin's internal sense of pace and distance, and he again knelt down and pulled out his datapad. The sensors should be close, he knew, and a quick scan from his datapad revealed that one of them was only twenty-five meters from him, hidden in the darkness. He got back up and walked towards in, eying it as he got closer and approaching it. Taking out a cable, he linked his datapad to the sensor and ran a quick diagnostic, connecting to the network of sensors spread out throughout the forest and ensuring they were still running. After several minutes of tests, Galvin looked at Saris and said, "Everything's in working order here. I'm surprised those dissidents were able to set something up this good." Normally homegrown anti-Empire groups were characterized by sloppiness and hot-headedness, but it appeared that this group on Exaron had at least some quite capable people. Two of them, Nara Kesh and Dela Xioxi were now employed in New Republic Special Forces, Kesh as a Technician, a hacker to be specific, and Xioxi as an intelligence specialist with the Rangers, but Galvin had thought of them to be the exception. Maybe he had been wrong to underestimate these people.
They got moving again without words, heading for another thirty minutes to the location of the possible DZ/LZ. Galvin took out his macrobinoculars and conducted a quick survey of the area, being sure to record the results on his datapad before packing everything up. Looking at Saris, Galvin said, "Alright, I've done what I needed to do here in the forest. We've got about two hours til the sun comes up, so if we make good time and don't get slowed up by anything we'll be in Vratokh just before sunrise." Standing up again and doing a quick visual scan of the surroundings one last time, Galvin led them off again, heading directly west towards Vratokh's eastern industrial districts.
The two-man team made excellent time, arriving within an hour and a half at the outer edges of the industrial districts. Galvin lay down in the underbrush at the edge of the forest, using his macrobinoculars to scan the area to ensure that there was no one watching the woodline. He doubted it, especially in this area of the city, but one could never be too careful. After ten minutes of seeing no movement along their front, Galvin decided it was safe enough for them to cross the open area into the city streets. He put away his macrobinoculars, stood up, and jogged across the clearing to the nearest building, a run-down, dirty two-story structure with a door facing them. Checking the door controls, he found it to be unlocked, and it slid open to allow him entrance. He turned around and waved for Saris that it was clear to cross before entering the building and heading up to the second floor.
Once Saris was inside and upstairs with him, Galvin said, "Alright, I say we take a minute here and get some rest for a bit. How do you think we should approach this contact of ours?" Galvin looked at his datapad, showing an extremely fuzzy holostill of a Verpine wearing some sort of headband, sitting next to a Trandoshan. This Verpine was Zz'nt, the local crime boss and the one to whom Alliance aid had been promised.
Saris had a quick quiet laugh, at Galvin's lack of knowledge of how advanced a satellite was these days, but he kept it to himself. He obviously didn't want educated on the subject, nor did he really care. A few moments later the two men where off again, heading for a ad-hoc sensor network set up by the local dissident cell on Vrakloth. The two agent made good time getting, not really having to avoid Imperial patrols so much now. Saris wasn't sure how the rebels had placed a sensor grouping in the forests, since they were heavily patrolled at some points. But then again, if you try and take away someone's freedom, people go out of their way to get it back.
Saris just hoped the coming battle didn't turn into a bloodbath, the galaxy didn't need any more of them. Eventually after finishing up at one of the sensor nodes, they made haste towards the prospecting Drop Zone. When they arrived there, Galvin set up shop taking as many readings he could, while Saris made sure to cover the man's back, while he did his job. No body likes being shot in the back.
After a little while, Galvin finished his readings, then the two set of for Vrakoth's Industrial centre. The two agents made good time in getting to the city, just about getting there in only a hour and a half. They stayed in the tree line for nearly ten-minutes, as they move surveyed the area, making sure on where to go. Galvin was first to go, he jogged across the field and tuck cover near a building. A minute or two later, Galvin gave the signal for Saris come across.
Saris soon enough found himself inside a two story building, which was pretty run down. Probably abandoned years ago, he followed Galvin onto the second floor, where he found a chair to sit on, it was good to have some rest after two hours of treking.
"Alright, I say we take a minute here and get some rest for a bit. How do you think we should approach this contact of ours?"
Saris thought for a second, then answered. " Well first off, no tactical gear. We can't walk around the city in this, secondly. Intimidation. This guy is a crime boss, he expects nothing but excellence from his goons, he'll also want people with balls. No one likes a suck up, and crime bosses hate them. So, we do a little something something for him, on our terms and he repays us. "
Galvin nodded at Saris's comment about leaving their gear. "Absolutely," he replied. "I think this building will be fine to hide our gear in for a few hours, at least until we can get a speeder or something from this Zz'nt character. It's clear no one's been in here for a while." The building had a thick layer of dust, undisturbed for what could only have been at least a year, and the fact that the door was unlocked and the building devoid of any signs of inhabitance or upkeep only confirmed Galvin's suspicion that this building was, in fact, completely unused, not an uncommon occurrence in heavily-industrialized areas.
"So, we do a little something something for him, on our terms and he repays us," said Saris.
"I agree," said Galvin. "We're going to have to get on his good side. Rudder's report said that Zz'nt was onboard, but we need to start building our own personal relationship with this guy." He paused and thought for a moment before saying, "You said 'on our terms.' Do you have a specific something in mind?"