by Courtney Kraft and MaryAlyce Rensa
Part I of III "Apartment Hunting 101"

Anastazya was grateful to her hosts, but she knew she had to find her
own place.  She picked up the ads,  made some calls, then left to
check out some sites early this late July morning.  
Knock, knock, knock.

"Who is it?" a voice came through the door of the quaint three-story
home, where they advertised a room for rent.

"This is Anastazya.  I talked to you on the phone this morning?" Ana

A click could be heard, then another, then another, then another....
Finally the door slowly creaked open, and the stench of smoke slipped
out the crack of the door and into Lt. Rowan's face, causing her to

An eye peaked out, raised an eyebrow and looked shocked.  Shut the
door in her face, and a voice said, "Sorry, the room is taken."

Ana recognized the smell of the drug, and obviously her uniform
scared off the potential landlady.  Like she would rent there,
anyway.  She looked at her list of 14 potential rentals, and crossed
off the first one, then turned in the direction of the second.


Knock, knock, knock.  ....... (long pause)....   Knock, knock, knock.
(long pause)...  Knock, knock, knock.  ... (long pause)....

Ana took out her list, circled the second address and wrote "return
later." Then she turned in the direction of the third.


Anastazya slowly walked up the steps to the apartment manger's
office.  It was late morning, she was tired from walking around, and
she was getting hungry.  This was stop number 7, and she was already
feeling discouraged.

"Ding Dong, " she rang the door bell.  An intercom whined, and a
voice said, "Turn the knob."   Ana opened the door and entered the
building.  There was a foyer nicely draped in modern furnishings.  A
droid slowly whizzed up to the Lt., and spoke, "May I take your coat,
please," and held out an arm that was more like a coat rack.  Ana
replied, "No, thank you," and continued to walk forward toward the
door marked "office."  However the droid spun around and hit her with
it's extended arm, saying, "May I take your coat, please."

Ana was startled, but not hurt, and said again, "NO, thanks." As she
turned again to head for the door, the droid attacked her with the
extended arm again, but this time Ana was prepared.  She pushed the
arm away from her and stepped back, yelling, "Someone take care of
this errant droid, please!"

A small man came out of the office, looked at the droid and the
imperial officer, and yelled at Lt. Rowan, "What did you do to my
droid?  Damn imperials think you own everything, you take everything,
... "   He got close to Ana's face, "Get the hell out. We don't want
you here."

Ana complied and decided that this was a good time to eat lunch.


Ana shuffled slowly up the stairs to her friend's home.  Pulled out
her key, but the servant droid had already seen her coming and opened
the door to let her in. Ana looked beat, and all she wanted to do was
eat dinner and got to bed.

"Ana, you look beat.  How did it go?" her friend Cassandra asked.

Anastazya walked over to the most comfortable chair, plopped down,
kicked her boots off, threw her hat which landed perfectly on the
coat rack next to the wall, and said, "Lousy.  None of the 12 places
I went to were ....  appropriate."   She took a deep breath, then
continued, "There were two that I didn't get to see, but right now it
isn't looking good.  Do you realize how many people out there HATE
imperial officers, " she added with disdain and confusion.

Cassandra laughed.  "Why don't you just look up the list of other
imperials in the city, and see if any of them have a room or know a
safe and 'appropriate' place for you to rent," she said, emphasizing
the 'appropriate' with a touch of sarcasm.

"Sure, " Ana replied, only wanting to get this over with.  She
couldn't believe how huge the city was, and yet how shallow the
people were.  Cassandra's droid make some buzzing at his connection
port, and returned to Cassandra with a sheet of paper.

"Here, you go, Ana.  A list of most  of the imperials in the city.
Why don't you go through it? You might know someone," she said,
handing the document over to Ana.

Ana glanced over the list, moaning over some names, saying 'yea
right' to a few others, then stopped.  "Psylocke lives near the
coordinates where I have to report for duty in September," she
exclaimed, with some life returning to her face.

Cassandra looked puzzled.  "Who is Psylocke?"

Anastazya chuckled.  "Someone I met at the Emperor's wedding last
year.  She was nice.  Maybe her apartment building will have  an
apartment available for me.  If it works for her, it should work for
me, " she smiled, and felt some hope finally, in her search for a

"I'll clean up, eat dinner, and maybe surprise her tonight, " Ana
said, and ran up to her room to clean up.  


Ana wore regular clothes and comfortable boots, and felt much more
comfortable walking to Psylocke's apartment building.   It was a long


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Part 2
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