DISCLAIMER: Star Wars and all publicly recognisable characters, names and references, etc are the sole property of George Lucas, Lucasfilm Ltd, Lucasarts Inc and 20th Century Fox. This fan fiction was created solely for entertainment and no money was made from it. Also, no copyright or trademark infringement was intended. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead, is coincidental and not intended by the author. Any other characters, the storyline and the actual story are the property of the author.
Shmi Skywalker looked at her new surroundings. She was a humble woman and not accustomed to having so much space of her own. Technically it wasn't her own since the place was owned and paid for by the Jedi, but this was different. She had a choice about being here. If she wanted to take a walk or even move around some of the furniture, she could. Here she was free.
At least she was in name. The Jedi, a taller dark skinned man who went by the name of Mac had asked her to not venture anywhere unaccompanied for the time being. He said it was for her own safety and she believed him. she had no reason to think otherwise. Ever since Qui-Gon had come to Tatooine, she had seen nothing but the utmost kindness coming from their order.
She sighed deeply and let herself fall on a plush couch. Definitely much nicer than the desert clay chairs she sat on in Mos Espa. Much, much better. Never in her life had she ever felt so at peace. Both her and her son were free and her boy was going to be a Jedi. He was being well taken care of and she could see him any tine she felt the need and he could do the same. Everything was perfect.
Well, almost perfect. The attack from the tattooed man still bothered her. She had seen a man die before her eyes and Callisto nearly end up dying herself. She didn't want to admit it, but she knew after everything that had happened, she had been the intended victim. Fortunately, no one she knew had died that day and they were safe now. At least that's what she kept telling herself.
Qui-Gon stepped in out of the kitchen with the tea. She had offered to make some out of habit, but he insisted upon doing it. "It's high time someone served you, I think," he had said. Shmi was inclined to agree. It was nice not to have to do something for someone else for a change.
"Here we are," Qui-Gon said, setting it down on the table in front of them. "It's made from leaves that came from Aldaraan. I think you'll like it."
"It does smell good," Shmi said.
Qui-Gon poured them each a cup. He handed her one, taking care not to spill any of the scalding water on her soft, worn hand. She took it happily, taking a slow sip.
"You were right, it is delicious."
The Jedi nodded. "It's been a cherished friend for many years in many different times."
"Troubled ones?" Shmi asked, knowing what he was implying.
He nodded. "Yes, especially turning the difficult times."
Shmi tightened her chin. "You don't have to worry about me. I've taken care of myself under harsh circumstances. I have been in trouble many times and have gotten out safely in the end each time. I'll be fine, don't worry so much."
Qui-Gon shook his head. "I can't help it. There are other things going on here that you don't know about. I sense dark times coming in the future and do not know how I can stop them, or even if I can. All I know is that no matter what, I will keep you safe."
Shmi found herself speechless for a moment. She honestly didn't know what to say or do next. Never before had anyone spoken to her they way he did, or even looked at her that way.
"If that is what you think, then I will be safe," she said softly.
She moved her arms to set the cup back down on the table. In the process, her hand brushed Qui-Gon's. She didn't know for certain whether or not she had done that on purpose or not, but what she did know was the warm ripple that traveled up her arm and into her chest. Next to her, she heard his breath catch in his throat. Apparently, the sensation had not belonged exclusively to her.
The backs of their hands remained in contact for what felt like an eternity. Neither one of them moved or even breathed. They just sat their, looking at the physical contact they had made, neither wanting the feeling to ever stop, both wishing that they could stop time right where it was.
At last Shmi spoke. "The tea is getting cold."
Qui-Gon still looked at her hand and slowly moved his hand up and down her own, caressing it lightly, moving ever so closer. Shmi took her eyes away from their hands and up to his face. His head turned to look at her, meeting her soft brown eyes with his own. She met his gaze, unsure what was going to happen next, only hoping.
In a slow blur, his lips met her own softly, and she returned it with equal gentleness. the next moments found the kiss more urgent and quicker, until the man and woman were locked in a passionate embrace.
Callisto felt every muscle in her body tense instinctively for the fight she was about to have. She also mentally braced for the injuries that were coming. She was in fair condition physically, not excellent, and that could cause problems considering who she was now up against.
She tried to move her mouth under the black gloved hand, but found that impossible to do. His grip was strong, inhumanly strong. She couldn't even move her lips enough to breath in through her mouth. That was enough of a testament to the future of this fight. Well, no matter, she would put up the best one she could.
He shifted behind her. Right now, given the position he had her in, there was little she could do until he moved and provided and opening for her defense.
But the Sith Lord had no intention of giving her one. From what she had gathered from paying close attention when the Jedi had thought her to be completely unconscious, she knew that this man had probably been trained for years for all sorts of missions and now he was being given the opportunity to flex those abilities. This was not going to be fun.
"I have no intention of harming you, but do not think that I will not should you resist," Darth Maul said, keeping his voice low.
Callisto knew why he was being quiet. He knew that Obi-Wan had just been here and was probably still close, possibly even in ear shot. If either one of them made too much noise at that moment, it was possible that he would here and come back. The Sith was not about ready for an interruption. He was here with a purpose. She wasn't about ready to go along with whatever that was.
She struggled by pushing backwards, hoping to put him off balance, even if it was just a little bit. She needed only the tiniest window of opportunity to resist. Unfortunately, he did move back, but held his stance. His response was to twist her neck sharply to the right, not far enough to harm anything too badly, but enough to send fire through her tendons.
"I meant it," Maul said.
Oh, she believed him, but she wasn't afraid. She wasn't stupid either. she knew how to pick and choose her battles. She could wait, but the question of how many chances she would get was still there and she had a good feeling that there would not be many.
Maul quickly maneuvered them both back into the main room. His hand slipped down away from her mouth and down to a firm grasp on her small neck.
"Don't you have anything better to do than to get on my nerves?" Callisto asked, forcing annoyance in her voice, trying to blot out the growing fear that this was a hopeless cause.
There was some surprise in his voice. "No cry for help?"
She shrugged, but her should muscles barely moved under his iron grip. "Why bother. I took you before, I can take you again." She felt the short of laughter on her ear. "You'll slip up and I'll have my window."
This time his response was to slam her against the wall right before the entrance to the back room. One day, she knew she would just have to learn to keep her big mouth shut. The blow left her dizzy and made it difficult for her to walk. So much for an opening.
Maul held her loosely to the side as he opened the door. At that moment, she wasn't an immediate threat until she got her bearings back. Her head was swimming. mentally, she was trying to pull herself back together before he could do anything else or take her anywhere, but it was difficult. The hit had been a hard one.
She felt herself being pulled inside the room and to the back door. Was that how he had gotten in? Impossible. Only a few people knew the code to the lock, how could he have known it. Unless of course he knew how to hack computer systems. Even then, she would have had some sort of warning and she knew he didn't shot the entrance, otherwise she would have heard it.
The door was opening, she could hear it, but she could do nothing about it. Moving too quickly made her head spin more. If she tried to fight now, she would lose and possibly get killed. No, that's not right. If he wanted to kill her, he would have done so already and wouldn't have waited for Obi-Wan to leave. Yes, Obi-Wan...
"Obi-," she said as loudly as she could, but was cut off by Maul's hand returning to silence her.
"Silence. Or I promise you, the consequences will be dire," he growled. And with that, he opened the door, pulling her out with him.
The night air was crisp. The cold breeze helped to snap her back into full consciousness. Her head did hurt a lot, but it was enough for her to regain control of her own mobility, even if it was being subdued. She managed a swift kick backwards, hitting Maul square in the groin.
Now that was enough to make him lose his grip on her. She pulled herself out of his arms and whipped herself around, catapulting herself back inside. She misjudged her speed and the traction of the floor and slid into the wall. In a second, she flipped up to her feet and flung herself to the door controls, hitting the button to close.
Darth Maul was too fast for that and jumped back into the room, lightsaber activated and ready. Callisto backed away slowly, the Sith Lord matching each of her steps with an advance.
"I was hoping you would have come quietly," he said.
"I don't do things the easy way," she said firmly.
"So be it." He swung the lightsaber at her once, singing the front of her dusty, white shirt. She honestly wasn't sure now about her theory about him killing her. All she knew was an end had to be put to this quickly.
At least now her arms were free. Her blaster was instantly in hand...and then out. Well, half of it anyhow. The smell of ozone lingered in the air as the front part of her blaster lay smoking on the floor, destroyed by one swing of the blade. Maul looked directly at her, eyes ablaze.
Callisto reacted quickly, jumping back over the banister that led out to the balcony. The front entrance was blocked, so she had to be more creative. She opened the balcony door and moved fast back out into the night.
Outside, ships whizzed past, but nothing was close enough to hitch a ride on. Damn. Before Maul could follow her, she climbed upward on the building, rising higher into the atmosphere. Behind her, she could her a few low grunts as her assailant followed in pursuit. Thinking quickly, she kicked off one of her shoes, letting it drop directly on his head. No effect, he still followed. This was so not her day.
Maul stood upon the ledge directly below her. Using the force, he jumped up in the air and landed on the one above her. Callisto found herself breathless. She hadn't expected that.
He looked down at her with a feral glare.
"There is no where else to go," he said.
"Oh no?" she said. She let go of the ledge, allowing herself to drop down. With luck, a ship would break her fall and hopefully not her neck. if not, well, she's like to say it was a nice visit, but it wasn't.
Maul watched in open mouthed shock as she plummeted down, landing right on her back on a civilian transport. Callisto held on, blocking out the back to her spine and looked back at the Sith Lord, who watched furiously as the transport vanished, heading deeper into the lower part of the planet.
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