"Rules of the Game" is a short story written by Saladin Ahmed for the anthology Canto Bight.[1] The story was narrated in the audiobook edition by Sean Kenin.

Plot summaryEdit

Arrival at Canto BightEdit

After winning "Salesperson of the Year", Kedpin Shoklop arrived to the planet Cantonica, where his prize was a two week all expenses paid vacation to Canto Bight. Upon arriving however, Kedpin encountered problems, the first of which that he did not have a sponsorship chip. Two officers however decided to let him go due to the work required had he remained detained. When leaving the spaceport, Kedpin was then stopped by an "acting gate agent" who asked for his luggage pass. When Kedpin couldn't produce one, the agent gave him a choice that they detain his bags or settle a fee for an exemption claim. Realising the trouble he could be in, Kedpin pays the fee and the agent offers to send his luggage to his hotel.

Elsewhere Anglang Lehet, a criminal Syndicate, had been hired by the Old City Boys to kill one of the more brutal officers in the Canto Bight Police Department named Brawg. In order to do so, he needed to find a target who would ingest a explosive device, get them arrested and just as Brawg interrogates them, Anglang would detonate and kill him. His contacts delivered the person they suggested he use to ingest the device, none other than Kedpin Shoklop. Anglang found him with ease and watched and waited.

Kedpin was dropped off just shy of his hotel by the limospeeder where he then encountered a "tourist droid". Whilst Kedpin believed the droid would show him to his hotel, it instead took him to a mud bath, where he was thrown into one by a large creature named Sweetheart, though he came out smelling very clean. The droid took off with most of Kedpin's money for the services, but gave him directions to his hotel.

Anglang watched from afar at Café Raduli as he saw the whole ordeal of Kedpin being roped into a scam by V-333. Kedpin eventually found his way to the Canto Casino Hotel where he met a pleasant creature named Altovan who checked Kedpin in. Upon doing so however, Kedpin had realised his luggage did not arrive and figured out his luggage had in fact been stolen. Despite this, Altovan made Kedpin feel very welcome and relaxed and then showed him to his room, where Kedpin slept for an hour. He was soon awoken by Altovan due to Kedpin stating he was interested in visiting Zord's Spa and Bathhouse where he relaxed there for the rest of the day.

The InterrogationEdit

As Kedpin left the spa, he encountered two orange humanoids, one wearing blue clothes and one wearing red. They told him that there was a problem with his hotel room, but Anglang, realising the two were about to steal all of Kedpin's money and take his mark away from him, stepped in to help him and shooed the two away. Anglang introduced himself with his real name to help make his half truth story more believable, and said he would buy Kedpin a drink to welcome him to the city. The two were then drinking at Klang's Place soon after, where Anglang then got to work by sneaking an ingestible detonator into Kedpin's drink and placing a tiny patch of fake spice onto his back. Anglang then slipped away for a moment to notify the CBPD of Kedpin dealing spice, but then returned for another quick drink before stating he had to attend a business matter for five minutes. During this time, Anglang watched as the CBPD arrived and dragged Kedpin out of the bar and into a police van.

Kedpin arrived at the police station where he was soon interrogated by a purple furred and impossibly muscled man named Officer Brawg. Whilst Kedpin tried to claim he was innocent, Brawg instead lifted Kedpin up and threw him to the ground and started kicking and punching him. Brawg demanded from Kedpin who he was working with, where Kedpin reflected back on the hell of a day he had. He thought back to the weird gestures Anglang had done, patting him on the back and then leaving not long before the CBPD showed up, and felt he might have been set up. He also thought back to other instances where any one of the people he met throughout the day could also have set him up.

Meanwhile Anglang, stationed in a room near the CBPD, listened through the audio monitor on the detonator he had Kedpin ingest. He waited for the right moment before detonating the device, but before he could do so, Kedpin stated he wouldn't give anybody else up to avoid Brawg hurting them also. Although Anglang had killed numerous innocents for work, this was the first instance where someone had shown some compassion. Despite needing to detonate the device to kill Brawg for a job he was being paid for, he deactivated the device and set off to save Kedpin.


After being beaten up by Brawg, Kedpin realised he had been knocked out and found himself in a cell. Outside he heard Brawg and Anglang talking, where Anglang made up a lie about his employers writing off the alleged offence, where in fact he used his advanced pay to bail Kedpin out. Kedpin and Anglang both walked out of the CBPD where Anglang came clean on needing to blow him up to kill Brawg. As they walked up an alley, they were surrounded by Klatooinian's who were in fact part of the Old City Boys.

The Old City Boys were angry at Anglang for not completing the job and were there to kill him. Anglang told Kedpin to escape, which the Old City Boys allowed before they started. As Kedpin ran, a fight between Anglang and the Klatooinian's broke out. Although Anglang was able to stop two of them, he was outnumbered and stunned by the Klatooinian named Uk with a stun stick. Hearing the commotion behind him, Kedpin stopped and realised that although Anglang had tried to kill him, he also saved him. He ounced up all the courage he had and ran back into the alley, knocking himself backwards from ricocheting off a Klatooinian. With the Old City Boys momentarily distracted, Anglang was able to grab the stun stick off of Uk and knocked out the remainder of the group. Anglang then emptied out all of their pockets and gave some of the money to Kedpin to help compensate for his luggage. Instead, Kedpin suggested they go to the races and enjoy the moment.

A Vacation At LastEdit

Kedpin, finally living out a dream of watching a real live Fathier race, bet all of the stolen money on a fathier named Kessel Runner, as suggested by Anglang. The two watched the race where Kessel Runner won by a small margin. Anglang and Kedpin cheered excitedly, as Kedpin had won what amounted to a whole years salary. In order to celebrate, Kedpin invited Anglang for a drink, where they both went to a more expensive place named Ubialla Gheal's nightclub.

Kedpin poured his winnings into a bowl, where he told Anglang to take half of the money as they had earned it together. After Kedpin claimed he had never won anything in his life, Anglang reminded him that he had won the trip he was currently on. Kedpin came clean and explained that the competition he won was in fact rigged in that the higher management, or a favoured employee named Laz Lazzaz would always win every year. Kedpin learned of this, and as the computer system for choosing the winner was old, he succeeded in hacking into it so that it made out he won. Nobody within VaporTech confronted him about this to claim he cheated the system as they would too have exposed that the competition was rigged, so instead allowed him to go on the two week vacation without any consequences. The two finished their drinks and they both then went their separate ways.


By type 
Characters Creatures Droid models Events Locations
Organizations and titles Sentient species Vehicles and vessels Weapons and technology Miscellanea



Droid models



Organizations and titles

Sentient species

  • Caskadag (First identified as Caskadag)
  • Human
  • Jawa (Mentioned only)
  • Klatooinian
  • Palandag (First appearance, simultaneous with Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing)
  • Wermal (First appearance, simultaneous with The Ride)

Vehicles and vessels

Weapons and technology



Notes and referencesEdit

In other languages