General Snappleguy was the RSIO.
I was supposed to retire.
It was supposed to be over.
There was just one thing left.
I was a bartender. That was a long time ago; I don't even remember the name of the place I worked at. Man, I must be getting old. Thing about the place I remember though was it was across from the local school. No, not the flying academy, not the military training school. The local grammar school. Kids gotta learn to read and stuff, right? They always came in when they were free, saved up their lunch money. We were the only place in town that served Snapple. They LOVED that drink. That's how I got my new name. Called me it all the time. Hey Snappleguy, get me a Snapple. As time went on, the locals forgot my real name. I'm surprised I still remember it. My name is Jeremy.
Years and years went by, and I stayed in business quite nicely. It hurt when they closed the school. The kids didn't stop by as much. Occasionally one would pop in with her parents, coming back for some juice. They always put a smile on my face...I love those kids.
Then it all got torn away. Just like that. The day I met Castor.
He was waiting for me when I closed up for the night. He figured I'd heard some information, being the bartender and all. People tell stories, I overhear conversations, the like. He had a proposition for me.
So what was I to do? I didn't have a family anymore, all my children were gone, business was slower than in the past. I told him what he wanted to know about the plans of smugglers to get around new sanctions. I was promised future compensation, and we shook on it.
They knew I told someone. A week later my tavern was ablaze before I got there. No one was hurt, but I ran off. They would surely come looking for me next. As I turned the corner, that same Castor guy grabs my arm, pulls me aboard a transport, and takes off. He went into hyperspace, or at least that's what he called it. Then he told me the information I gave him helped his people immensely.
We came out of hyperspace and docked with a Frigate. I've never seen a ship that big before. Biggest I ever saw before that was a corvette, once, about 20 years ago when it crashed a few miles outside town. They took me off the transport, showed me to a living quarters, asked if I needed anything.
"YES! WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON?"
Castor introduced me to one of his officers, Weg. At least I thought he was an officer until I noticed he was wearing twice the decorations Castor was. It was me and the Admiral, in my quarters, drinking tea. He called in one of his generals, Shades.
Weg then told me that this was the compensation I was promised. They made me a 1st Lieutenant right there, showed me my uniform, and handed me a datapad with a training schedule.
I was the newest pilot in the newest squad in the newest fleet of the Rebel Squadrons. Some compensation for info.
So I watched the instructional holograms, flew in the simulator a few times, got the hang of it. They were surprised how well I could handle an A-Wing at my old age of 49, but they were even more impressed how quickly I adapted to life in the fleet. I was friends with everyone. People listened to me that were six ranks above me. Maybe it was because I was old enough to be a grandpa to most of these pilots.
I moved up through the ranks, after about a year they gave me Wild Card squadron. We flew together for over three years. It became more political every day. Our fleet was so good at taking care of our "business" that soon we had no business to take care of, save the Empire. I stepped down, burned out after those years of being a CO. They wanted to give me the entire wing, and I ran that for a year. It was different, easier, but I had to stop. I was getting too old to be doing this stuff.
Let the kids do it.
It was four years after I joined that I retired. For two days. MacMan then asked me to fly a low-profile position in his squad, Fireclaw. So there I stayed for over another year, and started to miss the command. I decided it was time to go home.
I made my way back, rebuilt my tavern after all those years. It wasn't but six months later that I saw a kid that I used to give that Snapple to a long time ago. The fox-boy named Licah. I saw his uniform, handed him his favorite drink, and said "Yeah, I don't belong here. There's nothing left on Valruudd for me."
And we took off.