Serving Grand Admiral Thrawn
After the theft of the prototype TIE Defender on Lothal, Grand Admiral Thrawn sent Rukh to assist Governor Arihnda Pryce in the search for the Ghost Crew. Pryce suspected that the thieves would return to the vicinity of the crash site to retrieve the prototype's removed hyperdrive. Upon arriving at the crash site, Rukh smelled the Lasat rebel Garazeb Orrelios, as well as Ezra Bridger and Jai Kell, nearby where they were retrieving the drive. As the assassin approached the scene, Ezra attempted to stall him by claiming that he and Kell, who were both disguised as Scout Troopers, had just finished searching the area. The ruse did not work, and Rukh attacked the two. During the fight, he realized that Ezra was a Jedi when he used the Force to fling him off Jai. The two escaped on a speeder bike, with Rukh pursuing. Meanwhile, Zeb had evaded the assassin and escaped with the hyperdrive in an Imperial Troop Transport.
Rukh chased Ezra and Jai through a labyrinth of rock spires on a speeder bike. He engaged Ezra in a brief fight, his electrostaff to Ezra's lightsaber. When the two rebels pulled ahead due to Rukh being forced to evade a boulder in his path, the assassin fired a homing beacon at their bike, which they did not notice. Rukh continued the pursuit, eventually launching his bike over a pile of rock that Ezra had created as an obstacle with a planted detonator While in the air, Rukh's bike was destroyed when Ezra fired upon it, and the rebels fled. Using his tracking device, Rukh located the rebel camp and sent Pryce the coordinates. However, due to the rebels' earlier escape, Pryce did not allow Rukh to take out the camp by himself, which he was confident he could do. She instead attacked with several Imperial Combat Assault Tanks, a strategy that he criticized. After the Rebels had escaped the camp, deeper into the mountains, Rukh insisted that he be allowed to pursue, but Pryce refused, deciding instead to bomb the mountains.
During the Rebel Attack on Lothal, Rukh was stationed in the Capital City. The rebels' attempts to destroy the Lothal Fuel Depot and factory had failed, as Thrawn had prepared a second set of TIE Fighters to intercept the bombers after they broke through the blockade outside the planet. Upon being informed that some Rebel Pilots may have survived their crash-landing, Thrawn tasked Rukh with capturing any survivors alive, only killing them if he had no choice. Thrawn also told him to capture Hera Syndulla, the attack's commander, at any cost. Rukh complied, and during his mission, he captured Secon Daree and brought him to Pryce, who congratulated the assassin. Rukh later searched for Hera, acquiring her scent and found her and her astromech droid droid, C1-10P, helping another pilot, Mart Mattin. He ambushed the trio and engaged in a short skirmish with them. While he was unable to capture Mart and Chopper, he managed to separate Hera from them, which led to her capture by Imperial forces.
Personality and Traits
Rukh was fiercely loyal to the Empire in general and Thrawn in particular, serving as the latter's bodyguard and top assassin. Unless ordered otherwise, he would pursue his targets relentlessly and without hesitation or remorse.
Skills and Abilities
As a Noghri, Rukh could travel quickly on all fours without tiring. His agility and reflexes made him formidable and unpredictable in close quarters combat. Despite this, he could be easily overpowered by Force-sensitives such as Ezra. Rukh also displayed a heightened sense of smell, catching the scent of Zeb from a considerable distance, as well as easily seeing through Ezra and Jai's disguises.
Rukh carried an electrostaff in combat, holding his own against the seasoned Ezra. He also employed tracking devices for help with finding targets, and knew how to operate a speeder bike.
- "Through Imperial Eyes" (Mentioned only)
- He is voiced by Warwick Davis, a veteran Star Wars actor.
- Rukh was initially introduced in the Star Wars Legends Thrawn trilogy as the bodyguard of Grand Admiral Thrawn, whom he later killed after learning that the Empire was responsible for a catastrophe that had affected his people. Rukh had previously been acknowledged by Thrawn's use of the name as a deactivation code for his Imperial Sentry Droids.
- Rukh's visual appearance has changed greatly over the years. Some illustrations have him as an enormous, gray hulking creature while others have him smaller and wiry as the Thrawn trilogy describes.
- When Timothy Zann first developed the Thrawn trilogy, he had pitched the idea of calling Rukh's species, the Sith. As a way of explaining just what exactly it meant for Darth Vader to be a "Dark Lord of the Sith". This was before it was common knowledge that the Sith were the ancient darkside enemy of the Jedi. Because of this, Zann invented the Noghri species.