Good bye Shadow- REPOST
Sunday, November 11, 2007

A repost of a fic in which Mal Reynolds has thoughts about leaving home and joining the Independent Army.


Mal's stomach lurched a little as the Firefly left the ground and started it's journey to Persephone. It was his first ride on a boat and he wasn't quite sure what to expect. It sure was lots smoother than he had been told and hoped it would stay that way. Since he had never been on a boat before he didn't know if he would get space sick or not. At that very moment the Firefly bucked as it broke atmo and went into the Back. Then it got much smoother and Mal relaxed a bit.

Mal longed to go up to the bridge and see the stars from this perspective for the first time in his life. Many a warm night he had climbed out of his bedroom window and lay on the flat roof of the porch of the house on Shadow and stared at the bits of light in the sky that represented other planets and moons. People lived on them, that much he knew, but beyond that he knew little about them except that he wanted to see them one day. Well, at least he'd see Persephone and hopefully one or two others before this little war was over.

His Ma always said he got his wanderlust from his Pa because she was Shadow born and bred and had no reason to go anywhere else. His Pa had left a privileged life on Londinium in order to travel around the “verse for a year or two. He had finally settled down on Shadow with his Ma and started the ranch.

Mal never knew his Pa. He was shot and killed by a drunk ranch hand that had just been fired right before Mal was born. He was buried just beyond the house in a grove of trees and Mal's Ma visited the grave regularly. Mal figured that she drew her incredible strength somehow from these visits because each time she came back she had a firm set to her jaw and a steadiness in her eyes.

His Ma had raised Mal to be a God loving,God fearing man that loved his Ma, his ranch and the planet where he had been born. His heart and soul belonged completely to Shadow and the Independent cause. His grandparents from Londinium had broken off contact with their son when he decided to marry a woman from a “backwater” planet and live there to work and raise his family so Mal had no ties to them. He just couldn't wrap his head around how they could disown their own flesh and blood. In fact, their attitude was one of many reasons he hated the Alliance.

Mal sat down on the bottom of one of the roughly built double bunks that lined the cargo bay and started to stow his possessions underneath. He had a bit of trouble because the bunks that covered the cargo bay were squeezed in so tightly together that there was barely a foot between them. Finishing, he stretched out on the thin mattress of the bottom bunk, put his hands underneath his head and closed his eyes. The smell of the freshly sawed wood of the bunks filled his nostrils and the rough wool of the blanket that covered the bunk scratched his skin.

Chow wasn't for another hour or two and he figured he'd take a quick nap after all the standing in formation through all the speeches and emotion of finally leaving Shadow to join up with the other Independent militias. His mind drifted back to the ceremony that ended about an hour ago where Shadow had said good bye to it's sons and daughters as they flew off to fight the Alliance.

The speeches and ceremony had droned on and on until they all sorta blended into Mal's brain. Right before they boarded the Fireflies, the families had a chance to say goodbye before the boats left Shadow.. His Ma came up to him with a proud smile on her face and gave him a big hug. Her eyes had bits of water in the corners as she kissed him and she wasn't a woman that cried at all. He'd seen the tears glistening in her eyes as she kissed him on the cheek, straightened his new Browncoat and pressed a silver cross on a chain into his hand.

She said that the local Shepherd had blessed the cross and that it would protect him, what ever happened. He had slipped the chain over his head and quickly tucked it underneath his shirt, against his heart. He'd never seen his mother like this before and the rush of emotion he felt for her started to overwhelm him.

He gave her one last bear hug before he boarded the ship. He'd deny it until his dying day that he'd cried but his eyes did get more than a little misty with the thought of leaving the ranch and his Ma.

He was worried more than a little about her trying to hold the ranch together. It had gotten more and more difficult to sell the cattle since the Alliance had tried to force the Independent planets and moons to join them. The ranch's herd had dwindled to less than a third of what it was and there were few places left to sell the cattle without the Alliance poking into ranch business.

After the Border and Rim worlds had objected to being forcibly annexed by the Alliance, the Alliance had responded with with tariffs and restrictions on beef and other products exported to the Core (their best market) and had ended up a month ago with a complete blockade of the interplanetary trade routes. The Alliance had figured that the blockade would be a quick way to force the Independents to quickly back down. and meekly join the Alliance. But the blockade had been the last straw and the Shadow Assembly had quickly declared war and mobilized the militia that had just been been formed.

During past few weeks he also knew he had driven his her crazy with his boastful pronouncements about how he and he alone, well maybe with a few friends that were in the Shadow militia with him, were going to personally storm the Parliament building in Londinium and accept the Alliance's surrender without a shot being fired. They would be declared heroes and return home . Well, it may not happen exactly like that, but Mal had no doubt that he'd be home before Christmas and Christmas was in 6 months or less. What with the Almighty on their side how could they fail?

All the praying and preaching by the Shepherds certainly would help but Mal himself didn't have a doubt that the green, yellow and black Independent flag would fly over Shadow forever. His daily prayer was for victory over the Alliance and he knew God was listening.

Then things on the ranch would go on like they did before. He would gradually take over running the ranch, letting his Ma have a well deserved rest. Build a house of his own down near the creek and he'd find himself a nice wife. He actually had it narrowed down to one girl in particular, Becky Johnson from the next ranch over.. Have a couple of kids underfoot in a few years and they'd be spoiled rotten by their doting Grandma. The ranch would expand and become the biggest and best on Shadow.

His mind lapsed into pleasant thoughts of Becky's sweet lips and her other voluptuous attributes when something metal clattered to the deck at the opposite end of the cargo hold with a loud clang and his eyes flew open. A Sergeant started swearing at the unlucky private who had dropped the metal pole

Mal’s mind wandered a bit into that hazy area between awake and sleep. What if he could have his own boat, wander around the ‘Verse, taking jobs as needed, not being tied down to the ranch, at least for a while. He wouldn’t abandon the ranch and his Ma forever. Just for a while after this was over. Wasn’t this all about the right to be free and to be able to choose? Yep, that’s freedom all right and worth fighting for. Before he knew it his eyes closed and he was asleep.


Sunday, November 11, 2007 3:47 PM


This fanfic is a WOW.


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