Chapter 2: THE ROWDYRUFF BOYS
Shaak Ti sat in the back of General Grievous tri-fighter flanked by one of his MagnaGuards. She had no idea where they were going but she wasn't worried about that. She was worried about Palpatine who didn't seem to be upset at the moment. He kept on yelling at the General about his piloting skills.
An explosion rocked the small ship and Shaak Ti let out a tiny yelp. Grievous didn't hear it. He was too busy barking orders at a droid who was talking to him. It didn't take long for her to realize where they were going. The Invisible Hand. The cyborg general's personal battleship.
They're taking him out of Coruscant! she thought almost panicking. She was brazen enough to say. "Don't."
Grievous turned his chair around to look at her. "What did you say?" he demanded.
"Don't," she said again, not about to allow herself to be intimidated by him. "Don't leave the planet."
"I'll be giving the orders here," he informed her as they landed in the ship's docking bay. "Just be happy I let you live this long."
"Others will come to stop you," she said brazenly though she wasn't sure. "I know they will!"
"Only if they are brave enough for the challenge," he shot back.
“These Jedis are no mach for us” said Young Autobot.
Suddenly two lightsaber blades cut through the door.
"Surprise, surprise, General," Palpatine said smugly.
Grievous looked at Palpatine then back at the Togruta. They're both in on this! he thought. "We'll see who's surprised," he said. He stalked toward the doors as the blades retracted. He glanced back at Shaak Ti. "Bring her out with me," he ordered. "I want her to see what I do to people who cross me."
"Yes, General," the MagnaGuards said nodding their metal heads. They grabbed her by the arms and pulled her toward the door. She tried to break free but didn't accomplish it. Grievous kicked the door out and jumped down onto the docking bay.
Shaak Ti glanced at Palpatine but he seemed to be thinking about something at the moment. He didn't look at her. What am I going to do? she thought.
She was taken out of the ship, and forced to leave the Chancellor by himself inside. Once she and the Guards were out in the docking bay she was able to see Grievous was in the middle of fighting two more Jedi. I hope they can stop him. But she knew that was only wishful thinking.
It didn't take long for Grievous to overpower the two Jedi Knights. All he had to do was stand up a bit taller and run them both through. Shaak Ti's breath caught in her throat as she watched the two Jedi fall to the floor, dead.
Grievous turned to the droids prancing toward him. "Jettison the bodies," he instructed. "Choose a place where the Republic can get a good look at them."
He turned back to the ship. His eyes locked on Shaak Ti's a moment. She got his message loud and clear.
"Let's go," he said to the MagnaGuards who escorted Palpatine out of the ship. (Shaak Ti was already out). "The Chancellor comes with me."
"What about her?" Young Autobot ask glancing down at Shaak Ti.
"Take her to the briefing room for now," Grievous replied. "I'll figure out what to do with her later."
As two MagnaGuards took Palpatine into the ship Grievous stayed behind a moment. He stood in front of Shaak T and leaned his face close to her own so that his mask nearly touched the red flesh of her face. "You shouldn't have attempted what you did," he said in almost a whisper. "You should have stayed away instead of playing little Hero."
The Togruta stared at him. Was there regret in his voice? No, he did not know what that was like. She was hearing things.
Grievous turned away from her and headed out of the docking bay. "Take her away," he told the remaining Guard.
Shaak Ti was thrown roughly to the floor of the briefing room. Her head banged against one of the chairs and she sat there dazed as the MagnaGuard who had taken her there closed and sealed the door. (I don't know)
When she was finally able to shake the fog out of her mind she slowly pulled herself into a chair and sighed as she leaned back in it. I failed, she thought, feeling horrible. She hadn't been able to protect the Chancellor or keep those Jedi Knights from being killed. She'd been so intimidated that all she'd been able to do was stand and watch, just because she could not attack an unarmed foe. This is my fault... she touched her belt, the spot where her lightsaber should have been. I wasn't even able to fight him. I just stood there like a Youngling and let him take my weapon. What is the matter with me?
But she is not alone, She’s With Young Autobot, Brick, Butch, And Boomer.
You’re must be Jedi Master Shaak Ti, My name is Young Autobot, this is Brick, Boomer, & Butch. Together we are THE ROWDYRUFF BOYS!” said Young Autobot.
She felt something in her cloak. What is this? She wrapped her fingers around it and pulled it out. It was a homing beacon. What luck! She looked toward the door to make sure nobody was coming. No one was. With one little movement her thumb rested on the button and pressed it down, hard. A little red light began to blink. She just hoped someone would follow the signal in time.
“The General is not going to be happy for that” said Brick.
When Grievous finished his proclamation he no longer had anything to do. He surely wasn't going to stay with the Chancellor. Palpatine was making himself annoying by shooting off insults at the droid General every chance he got. If Grievous stayed with that pathetic politician much longer he might forget his orders and smash ol' Palpy's face in. That whole idea was out of the question. It wouldn't sit well with my superiors anyway...
Maybe it was his old mortal feelings catching up with him but he found he was longing for some company.. some living breathing female company. It couldn't hurt...
Making his way to a lift he stepped inside and pressed the button for the floor that housed the briefing room...
Shaak Ti heard the door open and looked up. She saw General Grievous standing in the doorway, staring over at her. Instantly her hand gripped the small homing beacon tighter. What does he want? She wondered. I hope he doesn't see what I have..
The General walked into the room and the door shut behind him. As he came near her she got out of her chair and began to back away from him. "What do you want?" she demanded, her expression hard an unreadable.
"I just wanted some company," he said honestly, staring at her face as she circled around the table away from him.
The female Jedi was surprised by his words. "Company?" she asked. "If you want company why don't you just be with the rest of your droids?"
Grievous chuckled but wound up coughing instead. She froze. She'd never heard him make that sound before. Is he all right?
The General quickly regained his composure and started for her again. She saw a strange look in his almost human eyes. A strange dark emotion that really shouldn't be there.
"I wanted some living company," he replied putting his hands behind his back. "Female. Someone I could have a conversation with. Someone with feelings..."
"Feelings?" she asked no longer avoiding him. "You are incapable of feelings. You do not even know the meaning of the word, General. You don't know what feelings are."
Instantly he was at her. "That shows what little you understand," he snarled, storming toward her. "But if you think you're so good at feelings, Jedi female," his hand clamped on the sleeve of her Jedi cloak. "Why don't you teach me these feelings?"
Taken aback Shaak Ti acted out of instinct. She clambered away from him. There was no way she was going to teach him the feelings he wanted her to.
The Togruta looked back. Grievous now held her ripped cloak. The cyborg stared at it stupidly for a moment then flung it aside. He came at her again.
Young Autobot, Brick, Butch, & Boomer stared at it stupidly to.
She backed away from him until her behind bumped into a wall. A yelp escaped her throat. She could go no further. She was trapped.
"You say I'm incapable of feelings?" he said looming over her. "Yet you, a Jedi, are taught not to know what feelings are by pretending they are not there. You who understand very little about feelings think you can judge me. You don't even know what I have been through... What I have lost..."
"Lost?" she asked totally surprise by this new revelation. "How can a droid lose anything?"
"I'm no droid!" he yelled, grabbing her shoulder painfully. "I used to be a living, breathing, feeling creature just like you."
"You were?" she asked staring at him in disbelief.
He nodded, he seemed to be less angry by then. "I used to have a life, children, friends, wives, anything a mortal could ever ask for but that was all taken from me by a..." he looked away. "Shuttle crash.."
"Yes," he said now totally calm. "I lost everything after that including most of my old body. So don't you ever tell me that I am incapable of feelings, female!"
Her eyes held compassion. "I.. I'm sorry," she said slowly.
Then there was a pause. Shaak Ti felt Grievous' metallic hand playing up and down her spine. She didn't like the feeling it gave her. She sank downward trying to escape his gaze.
Grievous pulled her back up. He wasn't finished talking yet. "So, Jedi, now that you know what happened to me you cannot judge," he said, his left hand resting under her chin. "And you can probably understand why I want your company now."
Shaak Ti had to get away. She looked around for something to get him away from her. She saw an object lying on the oval table. It could work.
With a Force flick of her fingers she brought it across the room and smashed it against Grievous' head.
"GAH!" he grunted letting her go and grabbing his head in pain.
Shaak Ti wiggled away from him and dodged a blow from his fist as she ran from the cyborg on all fours.
Enraged Grievous went after her and tried to kick her. She jumped to her feet and Force Jumped out of the way. She flicked her fingers and one of his lightsabers careened out of his cloak and into her hand.
She came at him with it but he grabbed her wrist. "You lose," he said smashing her against the wall.
The two stood there frozen in their spots for a few moments, staring each other in the eyes and breathing heavily, then Grievous noticed something in her right hand. Instantly he pride her fingers open and ripped it out of her hand. He stared at it a moment. "A homing beacon," he said. He looked back at her. "I could make good use of this."
“Oh boy” said Young Autobot.
“What do you mean Grievous.” said Butch.
He thrust her to the floor and threw her cloak back at her. "Put that back on," he ordered.
Trembling, she did what she was told. When she was done he grabbed her arm and drug her to the door.
"Where are we going?" she asked, wincing.
He looked down at her. "To meet your friends," he said.
"What are you going to do to me?"
"If it comes to it I'll kill you."