CHAPTER 3: JEDIS
Grievous, Shaak Ti, Young Autobot, Brick, Butch, Boomer, and a whole bunch of droids as well as two Magna Guards walked down the corridor following the signal from Shaak Ti's homing beacon.
"We're getting closer," Grievous said, staring at it. "They'll be here soon."
Grievous pulled Shaak Ti ahead of him and rested his head on her shoulders. "Sit down, Jedi," he ordered, pushing on her shoulders.
Slowly she sank to the floor. She crossed her legs and rested her hands on the skirt of her dress.
Grievous followed her down and stroked her shoulders. "Remember what I said," he whispered into her right ear. "If it comes to it I will kill you. I won't lose anything if you die.."
She closed her eyes and nodded. "I understand," she said.
"Good." he stopped stroking her and retracted his head.
She lowered her own and closed her eyes to stop unexpected tears. "I was hoping it wouldn't come to this," she said to him slowly. "I was hoping to..."
"To what?" he demanded.
"I was hoping I'd get to ask you something..."
She shook her head. "It's too late now but, General, do you really want to kill me?"
He stared down at the back of her head saying nothing.
"I know you have feelings. You said you did. You hate Jedi yet... please at least show some compassion. If you were unarmed like before I wouldn't kill you. Can't you do the same?" a tear rolled down her cheek. "Please...?"
She heard him pull a lightsaber out of his cloak and lowered her head farther. He had made his decision. She felt anguish in the Force. Anguish she could have healed any time. I wish I could have done something, she thought. I don't want to die now...
She heard the sound of footsteps coming forward. Someone was coming. A Jedi? Maybe someone who can help me...
The footsteps stopped. A young voice said. "Shaak Ti.'
The Togruta woman looked up. She saw Anakin Skywalker and his Master Obi-Wan Kenobi standing in front of her.
"I'm sorry, General Kenobi," she said. "I failed."
Shaak Ti's nose and ears were overwhelmed by the sound of thunder and the smell of ozone. Her own lightsaber floated mere inches from her neck, with a flick of the wrist Grievous could sever her head from her body. His free mechanical hand stroked her montrals so tenderly it sent a shiver down her spine. Stars! she thought as her breath caught in her throat. I'm going to die!
"General Kenobi," the cyborg chuckled. "And Anakin Skywalker."
"General Grievous," the younger Jedi said, his rage showing slightly though he tried to control it. "Surrender Shaak Ti and Palpatine and you will die humanly."
"Jedi scum," he growled. "You seem to misinterpret your situation."
The General's droids cocked their rifles.
What happened next was too fast for Shaak Ti to comprehend. Anakin pulled one of the blasters to his hand and fired at Grievous' head. The cyborg was forced to lite the saber and deflect the blast. Then, invisible hands wrapped around Shaak Ti's waist and she was pulled into Obi-Wan's awaiting arms.
"Kill them," General Grievous roared.
All the droids opened fire.
Obi-Wan blocked blaster bolts with his lightsaber. He looked down at Shaak Ti who seemed to be in shock. "Are you all right?" he asked his azure eyes full of concern.
"Yes, I think so," she said as he helped her to her feet. "He didn't hurt me."
Obi-Wan looked surprised by this but all he said was. "That's good." he blocked more bolts. "Now, can you tell us where the Chancellor is?"
"I don't know," she replied shaking her head as he gently pushed her behind him. "But I have an idea."
Anakin decapitated a battle droid. "Show us!" he instructed.
"That way!" she said pointing.
The three ran back down the hall. Anakin and Kenobi blocked blaster bolts.
"AFTER THEM!" Grievous screamed instantly giving chase. "Do not let them get to the Chancellor!"
“Not a problem” said Butch when he pull out a voodoo-doll of Shaak Ti.
Butch opened fire once more. Suddenly a blaster bolt, that Obi-Wan lightsaber had missed, ripped through Shaak Ti's left shoulder. She cried out in pain and grabbed her wound.
"Shaak Ti!" Obi-Wan exclaimed, looking back at her. "Are you all right?"
Before she could answer a metallic hand clamped onto her wrist and ripped her out of Kenobi's grip. She screamed as she was jerked roughly backward. The next instant her head bashed into the wall and she fell to the floor unconscious.
"Shaak Ti!" Anankin gasped as he and Obi-Wan stopped and turned to her body. She didn't move. "She's dead!" Anakin shouted angrily.
Instantly they had to pull out their lightsabers to block blows from Grievous who had chased after them. "This ends here, Jedi scum!" he yelled.
"You killed her!" Anakin screamed in rage.
"As is her due!" the cyborg growled.
Obi-Wan stared, still remembering why they had come, said to Anakin. "I think it's time we take our leave."
Anakin looked at him, not exactly sure what he just said. "What about Shaak Ti?"
Obi-Wan looked at the Togruta again and shook his head. "There's nothing we can do for her now."
Suddenly he Force pushed Grievous back down the hall. Grievous smashed into his army, who had followed him, and quickly got to his feet. He began to bark an order but Anakin and Obi-Wan suddenly cut a hole in the floor and disappeared.
"WHAT THE!" he screamed then turned to his droids. He gave out a few orders then stalked down the hall to the bridge, forgetting about Shaak Ti for the time being.
“You go ahead, We’ll stay with her” said Young Autobot.
So Young Autobot, Brick, Boomer, And Butch stayed with Shaak Ti.
The rocking of the ship brought Shaak Ti around a short time later. As she pushed herself into a sitting position her head began to hurt and so did her shoulder. Moaning, she put her hand over her wound and felt it had burned shut for the time being. What? Am I... alive?
Uh...Yes, Young Autobot thought
She painstakingly pushed herself into a standing position. The Force filled with disturbances. Something was wrong somewhere. I have to find out what, she thought, stumbling down the rocking hall. I have to find out what's going on...
We’re with you, Young Autobot thought.
As Anakin and Obi-Wan destroyed all of Grievous' droids on the bridge the cyborg realized he was out of time. He had to get out of there. If he didn't do something quick it was all over for him.
Jumping down from the control platform he grabbed an electrastaff off the floor and righted himself. Obi-Wan jumped in front of him and he heard Anakin sneaking up from behind.
As they moved in to corner him he lifted the staff, but not to fight with it. He still had one trick left. Turning to the window, he shouted. "You lose, General Kenobi!" then threw the activated staff at it.
Instantly the window burst. As the glass shattered the cyborg was sucked out. Twisting around he aimed his hand back at the ship and shot a magnetic hook at it. The hook caught and he was reeled in. When his magnetized feet touched the hull he dashed to the other side.
A hatch opened and he jumped back inside. He hung there a moment, his cape flapping in the fast rushing out air, looking for more Jedi he didn't know about. Seeing none, he let go and dropped onto the floor. Grievous landed safely in the hall. He righted himself and dashed down the corridor toward the escape pods.
Shaak Ti was also making her way toward that area, But Young Autobot, Brick, Boomer, & Butch followed her. Only she didn't know what was going on. She was lost. The Chancellor, she thought as she stumbled down the hall. I must find the Chancellor. She leaned against a wall to breathe. Where is the Chancellor? Why is this ship rocking so much? What's happening?
I don’t know, Boomer thought
A hand smacked into the wall inches from her head. Startled, Shaak Ti opened her eyes and found herself staring into the reptilian ones of General Grievous. "General!" she gasped. "How did you..?'
Grievous was in a hurry. "This is your fault!" he snarled glaring at her. "Thanks to your homing beacon my ship is coming apart!"
"My... huh?" she was confused. "What are you talking about?"
"Nevermind." he was in a rush. The cyborg tapped out a code in the wall near her head and a door she hadn't been aware of opened. "Get in there!" he ordered.
The Togruta looked where he indicated. A small, metallic room. "An escape pod?" she asked looking back up at him. "With you..?"
Grievous had to time for this. "Just get in there!" he yelled grabbing her arm and shoving her inside. Young Autobot, Boomer, Butch, & Brick went to a different escape pod.
“Come on Boomer, get in there” said Brick.
Shaak Ti fell against the back wall just below a small round window. As she pushed herself into a sitting position Grievous clambered inside. He sat down and looked at the controls. 'Time to abandon ship," he said, pushing a button.
The door closed and shot away from the ship. Grievous looked out the window and growled angrily when he saw the Invisible Hand, his pride and joy, go careening toward Coruscant's atmosphere.
Shaak Ti huddled under the window and didn't dare move. She saw he was in a dangerously bad mood for some reason. She didn't move or speak, fearing if she did he'd hurt her to vent his rage. A soft moan escaped her lips none the less as the rocking of the tiny ship made her wound hurt again. Gasping, she covered her mouth with her hands and hoped he hadn't heard her.
If he did he didn't show it. He stayed looking out that window wheezing and coughing every once in awhile for some reason.
The ship was soon joined by another. The escape pod connected to the smaller ship. When the door opened a bunch of battle droids stood on the other side. When they saw the Jedi woman they aimed their weapons at her.
Grievous' fist slammed into the lead droid and smashed it to bits. "Hurt the Jedi and I'll dismember you all!" he growled, in no mood for this sort of thing right now.
"What should we do with her?" one asked just to know.
Grievous grabbed the woman's arm and jerked her to her feet. "Make sure she's comfortable," he instructed, digging his clawed hand into her arm till she let out a yelp. Satisfied with that he threw her into them. "And be nice!'
One droid, after getting out from under her, told Shaak Ti to sit down in one of the seats. She did then watched as Grievous sat down in the back and glared at everyone as the ship went into hyperspace jump.
After an hour of silence she was brazen enough to ask the General. "Where are we going?"
At that same instant the ship slowed to normal travel. Grievous pointed out the windshield. She looked toward it. She saw a strange green and brown planet looming in front of the ship.
"Now you have you answer, female," Grievous said standing up and perching beside her seat. She sunk down lower, intimidated by his size. Grievous waved a hand at the planet. "Jedi Master Shaak Ti, welcome to Utapua."