He was on his feet in an instant. The groaning, protesting gate opposite his position certain to reveal something spectacular and potentially lethal. So fixated on the lumbering monstrosity, Luke almost didn’t hear the whisper from behind him.
He turned around and jumped quickly between the dank wall and an enormous pile of bones.
It was a Twi’lek, dressed as a dancer. If he hadn’t been distracted by the roaring of the rancor and the shaking of the earth, Luke might have had time to notice she was also pretty. As it was, he just ducked next to her, trying to think. There were no obvious weapons around.
The woman’s hand yanked him lower. “He can’t see well, but he can smell. Stay here. He prefers fresh meat.”
The dust from the decaying bones and the smell of rotting carrion stung his eyes. Luke wiped at them, trying to focus.
“It’s OK to cry,” she said softly.
Embarrassed but not wanting to take time to correct her, Luke grabbed the largest bone he could see—some unfortunate creature’s femur. It looked like a toothpick compared to the size of the thing that wanted to eat them, but he didn’t have a better option right now.
“Get away if you can,” Luke jerked his head in the direction of the open gate through which the rancor had entered. “I’ll distract it.”
“Kiss me for luck, handsome,” she said.
His embarrassment increased. It was stupid to blush at this most inopportune time, but as before Luke decided not to take time to argue. He leaned over quickly, placed a shy kiss at the corner of her dark red lips, and then leapt over the top of the pile, running towards death or victory.