Firefly: The Past PART 4
Thursday, October 19, 2006

Part 4 of a story about Shepherd's past. I'm not a doctor. I'm a computer specialist. If I get doctorin' terms wrong, don't sue me. I say what sounds really cool.


The sky was clear when Mal, Zoe, and Jayne stepped off the ship. Mal saw that Jayne was right--four people were approching the ship. And they weren't armed. At least what Mal could see. The men came closer, and Mal stopped on the edge of the ship's ramp and called out to them.

"What can I do for you folks?" Mal said. The men stopped, putting their hands in their pockets. One stepped forward.

"We saw your ship crash. We was just comin' to see if you needed any help." The man was tall and lean, yet muscular. He looked to be some kind of farmer, due to his large hat and overalls. All four men were covered with mud. They all had a similar appearance, and Mal deduced that they must be brothers of some sort. He motioned to Serenity.

"We have crashed, but, we're gettin' her fixed up. No need for any help. We'll be on our way."

The one man stepped forward a bit more, offering his hand for a shake. Mal eyed it, and the man pulled it away. "Name's Abe. These are my brothers, John, Soren, and Mitch." Abe pointed to each of the men in succession. Mal nodded to them once.

"Thanks once again for your offer, but we don't need help to patch up our ship." He said, marking the conversation as complete.

Abe shook his head. "Well, that might be a problem. Y'see, we're honest folk, and we always treat guests like that--guests. We can't take no for an answer to come and eat at our place tonight. That'll give you a comfortable place to rest until you start the patchwork. You might need some hands, too."

Mal looked at Zoe, who remained stone-face. Jayne grinned.

"Gai si, what's wrong in free food?" He glanced at Mal, still holding Vera in his hands. Mal gave a slight shake of his head.

"Jayne, keep your mouth shut." He turned to Abe. "Can you just show us where your house is, so that if we want to come, we can come later? We have an injured man, and we want to keep him in our infirmary."

Abe's eyebrows rose. "An injured man? Why didn't you say so before?" He snapped his fingers. "We'll bring the meal to ya, then."

Mal held up a hand. "No, that won't be neces--"

"We won't take no for an answer." Abe cut him off, then turned to his brothers. "C'mon, we've got a meal to get to these folks."

Mal watched them go off, a confused expression on his face. He turned to Zoe. "Shepherd said he was afraid of this planet, right?"


Kaylee was talking with Book. He was more listening than anything though. She didn't mind, mainly because she knew he had a lot on his mind. Her face was all greasy again from getting into the engine, but she kept on talking. She usually talked to Wash, because she and her shared a small connection; like brother and sister. He flew Serenity, and she kept Serenity going. Mutual relationship--each thought the ship was their own.

Book was sitting quietly, his head resting on his hands, staring off to the wall. Kaylee smiled and plopped down next to him. She waited a couple seconds before saying anything.

"Wall ain't gonna say anything anytime soon, Shepherd." She said brightly. "Besides, if it did talk, only I'd be the one able to understand it. Serenity has a different voice than that of most things."

Book looked at her. "You're always so cheerful. It's amazing to me how one not of God's word can be so cheerful."

Kaylee looked at her gloves and shrugged, smiling. "Well, I don't reckon I know any of that stuff. Bein' cheerful just come natural to me. Ain't no power in the 'verse'll stop me from tryin' to look on the bright side of things."

Book smiled as well, momentarily forgetting his stress. "And I don't blame you in any way for wanting to be that way."


Wash cracked his eye open a tiny bit. His head was throbbing, and his arm hurt ruo di yu. He had woken up a little while before, but had finally been doped by the doctor again. Now, he smelled the sharp air of the infirmary and just wanted to get out of there. He looked around slowly. Simon was busy in the corner, and Wash cleared his throat, causing the man to look over at him.

"Can I go to my own bunk?" Wash asked, rubbing his head. Simon walked over to him and stuck another needle in Wash's arm. Wash looked at him.

"Do you see me as the human pincushion, or something? Or is it just a doctor thing?" He asked humerously.

"Sorry...I need to keep you under surveillance until I pin down all the effects from the crash. Your with me for another 24 hours at least." Simon looked at the paper the computer had given him and frowned, looking up.

"You're white blood cell count is up." He grabbed a thermometer from the table and pressed it quickly across Wash's forehead. The thermometer gave a small beep, showing the numbers. Simon's eyes grew wide, and he grabbed his stethescope.

"You have a fever, how are you feeling?" Simon asked hurredly, pressing the stethescope against Wash's chest. Wash shrugged.

"As well as a man can feel for bringing down a ship in the middle of nowhere, to a place that even a Shepherd doesn't want to go to!" Wash grinned one of his well-known grins, and Simon couldn't help but smile at the man.

"I'll need to put you on some fluids. Drink some more water, and I'll get you some medicine." Simon walked to the medicine cabinet, determined to keep the fever down.

River lightly stepped into the room, muttering to herself. "Wolves...sheep...books...pages scattered." She went into one of the corners of the infirmary and sat down, knees drawn up to her chin. As Simon prepared the medicine, Wash looked at River carefully. She was young, but had a powerful mind, that much he did know. He didn't know how to talk to River very well, but he saw her as another crew member and respected her for that. So she was a little bit crazy...everyone could change. At he thought.


Mal was annoyed. Well...more annoyed anyway. He stomped back into the ship and went straight to the bridge for the intercom. "This is your captain speaking. I need all crewmembers with the exception of Wash and Inara in the common." He turned to Zoe, who was starting to turn around.

"Zoe, keep an eye on Shepherd. I don't want him to be seen if those people turn up again."

Zoe nodded, and kept going. Mal stood for a minute, thinking about the next course of action. He sighed, rubbing a hand through his hair. There was really only one way to deal with this; get off the planet. But they couldn't do that yet with Wash out of comission. At least, that's what Kaylee said. Mal spun on his heel and started down to the kitchen where they all met.

Walking into the room, everyone was quiet; a first in the ship meetings. Jayne was leaning back in his chair, sharpening a knife, and Zoe was on the edge of her seat. Kaylee leaned against the kitchen sink while Book stayed in the shadows, holding his Bible. Simon walked in at the same time as Mal.

"Wash has a slight fever, but I think it'll be okay." Simon said to Mal, who merely nodded at the doctor. Mal stood at the end of the wooden table, thumbs hooked through his belt, legs apart. He was in his no-nonsense pose, and everyone straightened. Even Jayne stopped sharpening his knife.

"Folks, I don't need to tell you what you already know. What you do need to know is that in a couple hours, some men are going to be bringing us food. For what reason, I ain't aimin' to find out. I'll just thank 'em politely and send 'em on their way. I won't trust no one out here, and I don't expect you to trust 'em either. We're in strange parts, and in a dangerous situation accordin' to our preacher." He nodded his head towards Book. They all looked at the Shepherd expectantly. He said nothing. Mal sighed and continued.

"Now, since we aren't going to be figurin' out anytime soon what in the 'verse is going on, I'm going to play it safe. No one leaves the ship unless'n it's Kaylee or Wash goin' to fix somethin'. Accordin' to Kaylee, she can fix the engine, but she needs Wash in the cockpit." He turned to Simon. "Is he stable enough to get up there and help?"

Simon thought for a moment, then slowly nodded. "As long as he doesn't push too hard, he should be fine. The meds worked very quickly. All we need to do is keep his fever down; that might just be a result of his body overheating a bit. I don't think it's anything serious."

Mal gave a quick nod. "Shiny. Tonight after those folks leave, I'll get him up there, and he and Kaylee can get to work."


Thursday, October 19, 2006 3:13 PM


Uh oh, "beware Greeks bearing gifts" springs to mind. And why, if Book is afraid of the place and/or people doesn't he speak up and say why? And how come River isn't spouting out warnings or somesuch her own self? I just hope our crew don't get themselves in all manner of a fix here. Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Thursday, October 19, 2006 8:12 PM


For some reason, the forceful...hospitality of the 4 men gives me pause. That kind of polite insistance makes me wonder why they're eager to have contact with the crew so badly. Less they know Book's aboard:(



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