Retribution: Chapter 13
Friday, March 6, 2009

The New Haven Series; Post BDM; M/I, S/K: FINAL CHAPTER. An explanation is in order, and the story winds down as a new arc begins....


"Anyone know what's goin' on?" Jayne growled as he stood by the counter, chewing breakfast.

"Dunno, somethin' big though by the looks of it." Hershel, sleeves rolled up as he stood over the stove with a ladle and spooned out servings of conjee for their bedridden guests. "Possibly something to do with those little ones is my guess." he nodded off towards the table, where Inara sat with the two small children.

He frowned. "Two little pups? That what the fuss is all about?"

"Probably." Inara was watching them, having taken a break from coloring she had fetched them some chow for them and the little ones were eating with gusto. "They've been hiding in that other ship since it touched down and there was quite a reaction this morning."

"Doctor saw them and just about looked like he swallowed a spider." Mal's father agreed with a head nod.

Meilin eyed the food the other children ate and reached for it from her mother's lap, jabbering loudly.

"Hell they ain't nothin." Jayne wolfed down more food. "Ain't like gettin' a naked girl in a cryo box."

Hershel raised his eyebrows, but said nothing.

Virgil, the closest bed to the kitchen, listened carefully.

Inara, cleared her throat, shooting him a sideways glance. "At any rate..."

Jayne was oblivious. "Probably Simon's..." He reasoned.

Zoe slipped out of her room as the conversation continued.

"Probably knocked that other doctor up." the mercenary masticated, his voice dulled with so much food crammed in his mouth.

Inara glanced to the unknown whelps, they were too busy enjoying their bacon, eggs, milk and jam slathered toast. Too into the yummy food to listen in on Jayne's remarks.

"She found River, River read her mind some and they decided ta spring it on ol' lover boy..."

"Why don't you quit runnin' your mouth." Zoe announced stiffly as she limped over to the kitchen. "Whre is the lady doc by the way?"

"Off with Simon, Mal, Kaylee and River." The ex-companion announced.

"Well he's gotta knack for attractin' surprises now don't he." Jayne sneered, not even missing a beat in his conversation. "Ain't exactly a lady killer neither. Probably met her atta hospital, bumbled his way through a night and then never saw her ag...."

Jayne stopped because the look the second in command gave him was the one that meant he was going to clean the horse stalls with his face.

Zoe was unwavering in her glowering.

Putting his head down, he finished eating.


It was fitting for Serenity to be the place of discussion, for four of the six could remember a similar tone over two years ago. It had been a talk where the Doctor had been front and center, explaining to all his plight.

It was the Operative's turn.

"Why?" Mal began, firmly.

"I have nothing left." He confessed, honestly. "I have no name, no purpose, no path, no sense of worth. My only possessions are compunction and despondency...."

"Woe is thee." Mal cut him off. "Why." "I was given the chance to have an honorable death, but I don't deserve it." The Operative announced. "I don't deserve to have my suffering ended, life passing onto the next." His eyes locked onto the Captain's, his pain, his guilt, showing through. "I wanted to do something, may it be small and insignificant against the grander scale, something that could right at least one wrong. To gain retribution at least once."

"Before....?" Simon quizzed, his face puzzled, yet reserved.

"Before the Alliance that created me slay their own demon, or my own quest did."

"Why them?" Kaylee, sounding unusually fierce, asked. On the table rest her hand, it covered Simon's, holding it, unifying them.

He cleared his throat. "When I took River's case, I went down to the archives and was allowed complete access to her records, including those involving a project code named Generation. It is the Alliance breeding program, it was headed by a scientist named Wesley Agnus Mithias who was given the authority to attempt to produce more refined specimens for the Alliance via selective breeding as well as occasional prenatal surgery." Lifting his hand up, he displayed an external hard drive, compact and silver, and slid it across the table to Simon. "In order to preserve the donors the genetic material is coming from, their deployable students, this division of the Academy engages in the slave trade industry."

Mal's jaw twitched.

Kaylee's hand gripped Simon's harder.

River's eyes pooled with tears.

"Young, female slaves are expendable vessels." He confessed, horror lining his voice. "For nine months they are kept content, healthy and unaware of the situation, until they due and taken into surgery. The child is removed, and they are left to die on the table."

The mechanic stifled back a gasp as Simon and Malcolm's eyes seethed with rage towards the lack of humanity.

"With the body disposed of there is no trail, and afterwards there is a new shipment of slaves to begin the cycle all over again." He finished, looked emotionally depleted, revolted by what he had once thought of was a shining utopian government.

"They're both River's then." Simon took a deep breath, reaching out and carefully cradling the hard drive. Trying to think of what to do, where to even start.

Tasya's eyes fell to the wayside.


The doctor gazed back up, quickly.

"The little girl, she's yours."

Mal's eyebrows raised, slightly, as he turned to Simon.

Simon's mouth fell open, paling.

Kaylee stared in disbelief at her fiance.


Inara set the empty plates in the sink.

"Here, I got this." Hershel nudged her away.

"Thank you, Hershel." She smiled kindly as Meilin slobbered happily on her stuffed buffalo. "I hope Pacey and Ezra aren't too busy to miss out on your fine cooking."

"Oh now, don't worry about my boys, I got some food in them and they're off working the herd." He explained, "good to get them back on a horse."

"You sound eager to as well." She bounced Meilin gently as the baby jabbered in a muffled fashion with a mouth full of plush buffalo.

"Eventually, take it I'm needed here, bit of a disturbance in the routine." He scrubbed the dish with a sudsy cloth.

With an appreciative head nod she went back to the table, where the children were seated, coloring with some printer paper and a box of crayons that had been brought along with them. Zoe was also there, hovering above, watching the two. They were both focused. As she approached she found the boy drawing a fluffy, happy kitten that looked a good deal like a fattened version of Boston (who was a tad on the hefty side) and the girl drawing a siamese cat that had sharp fangs and dragon's wings and roared out blue fire (or ice, Inara wasn't entirely sure).

"Do we know anything?" Zoe asked, quietly. Arms folded, brooding over the situation.

"Not a clue." Inara answered back, restlessness laced in her tone.

Meilin gazed up at her aunt, talking with her mouth full.

"Don't like this...."

"I'm still up in the air about it." Reaching out, Inara absently ran her fingers through the boy's messy mop hair.

"You really think they're Simon's?"

"I'm trying hard not to form any assumptions, because nothing I come up with ever is even close to the truth when it involves River, or Simon for that matter."

They boy, feeling someone play with his hair. looked up innocently.

"That's a beautiful picture sweetie." Inara praised.

He beamed. "Tank yoo."

"What's your name?"

"Named?" He was puzzled.

"What do people call you?" She asked gently, serving his eyes, reading the confusion as he processed the question.

The child shrugged his shoulders.

He didn't know.

Slowly, Inara and Zoe exchanged reactions.


Tasya licked her lips, gathering the courage to speak. "The gene that produces clairvoyance hasn't been isolated." She began, unsurely, head down yet titled slightly as her hands fidgeted under the table. "But from what the Alliance has been gathering it takes either two parents with the same possible recessive gene to produce a clairvoyant child, but even then the odds are slim they will be significantly clairvoyant, 30%, most likely their children will not exhibit any obvious signs other than just a slightly hieghtened intuition. However someone with the recessive gene together with someone who has it dominate have a greater chance, 50%, and it goes on with two full clairvoyants...."

"I understand it runs in the family." Kaylee cut her off. "But, how'd they get... I mean Simon..."

"The hospital." Her sweetie murmured the realization, still in shock.

There was a pause, as everyone watched him.

Fingers caressed the smooth shell of the hard drive, and he focused on it as his voice was hoarse. "They um... when you start work at one of the hospitals the first thing they do is take various DNA samples. It's a fail safe in case something were to happen to you due to work. Whether it be catching ill or being injured in some way, being rendered sterile or needing stem cells or dying... that way... they can..." Voice trailing off, heart rattling in his chest as blue eyes became foggy with tears. He had a daughter, a little girl that had suffered at the hand of the same people that had nearly destroyed River.

"This division of the Academy has a good deal of DNA from various banks due to similar policies." The Operative "The Companion's Guild,"

Mal's head lifted up some.

"Hospitals, Federal Agencies, Military, both Alliance and Independents as they gained that bank after the war,"

Mal swallowed thickly.

"and they use it all without regard." A deep exhale left his chest.

"So you knew about them both, when you left us." Simon's voice hitched, eyes narrowing. They had turned a darker shade of blue since knowing of his own child, containing more of an edge.

"I did."

"Reng ran nin shen me du ran hou mei you shou?!" He growled, raising up out of his chair and reaching across to grab the Operative by the collar.

"SIMON!" Kaylee shrieked.

"They were still there!" He was nearly across the table, teeth bared, protective and furious towards the welfare of his child and his sister's.

"Your anger is understandable Doctor but what was I to do? I was in no position to disclose that information...."

Mal stood up, grabbed Simon by the shoulders, and sat him back down forcefully. "An ding..."

The doctor pushed him away and stood up, knocking his chair over in the process."They were in that Bei pao qi de di yu kong...." Simon voice was like thunder, a tone everyone knew was rare and was to be respected. Though it was laced with guilt for he himself had only freed River, while they had been in the same facility. He stalked off a ways, running his hands through his hair. "And who knows what they did to them? Bei bi de e mo think they can play with minds, play with lives like they're God..."

The operative watched him, more so composed regardless there was a man at the other side of the table that looked fit to kill him.

"Doc, we all understand your anger, but let's use our grown up voices and sort this out." Mal noted, though he respected his medic's disconcert.

Kaylee got up out of her chair and went over to her brooding, near growling fiance. Sidling up to him, she took his hand, then moved to face him and make eye contact. "They're here now, right? With us and got all their fingers n' toes and whatever might've been done you'll figure out how to fix it." Kaylee patted his hand and made sure to keep eye contact as his gaze softened some to her sunnier outlook. "She can be ours." She gave a reassuring smile, small, but it covered the range of emotions she felt.

Simon saw the acceptance already in Kaylee's eyes, how she was ready to take his daughter in without hesitation, and it melted away some of his animosity.

Tasya cleared her throat. "Um... as much as I hate to further dig deeper... the little girl... she's going to need some advanced medical care."

Simon's eyes immediately trained on the woman who he did not know.

"In the records on that hard drive you'll find they she had numerous prenatal surgeries. She was treated differently than the other... subjects... um... she was a new direction they wanted to try, and I don't know exactly what was done but you need to look into it."

"Alright," he sighed "but I do have a question regarding their 'abilities.'"

"They don't have any yet." Tasya explained. "Clairvoyance is a manifestation of puberty, they might possess the heightened intuition but they shouldn't be able to read minds."

"Well at least we have a few years." Kaylee reasoned.

"Somewhat of a relief." Simon felt something hanging in the air and turned to his sister. Her eyes were round and teary, and silently asking something he felt he already knew. "River...?"

"Simon." She felt low, and horrible for asking him to take such a burden. "I'm not.... I'm not his mother." The young reader strained. "Can't be, not who I am.... and I know.... know you have moved the metaphorical mountain and know you..."

"River, of course." He cut her off, immediately accepting. Pausing, he glanced back to his fiance.

She simply nodded her head.

"They'll be ours." He told her, pausing and letting out a heavy sigh. "They're ours." He felt terrified, yet excited all at the same time as his eyes timidly met Kaylee's. "They're ours."


Simon came in first.

He surveyed the kitchen table, strewn printer paper and crayons, two three year olds seated there, unknowing their lives were about to change for the better. That they would be loved and cared for, and would be given names and a real childhood.

Kaylee sidled up next to him as Mal went to Inara to explain what was going on. "I always liked the name Dakota for a little girl." She mentioned softly.

"It's beautiful." Simon muttered, distracted as his eyes absorbed their small features. He realized she had his eyes, his daughter, Dakota Tam, had his eyes. The feelings rushing through him, were indescribable. Taking a deep breath, remembering to breathe, he looked sideways at his fiance. "Liam was my Grandfather's name, my Father's middle name. It's um.. it's a family name."

"I think he looks like a Liam."

Simon swallowed thickly and moved forward. At the table, he picked the little girl up and drew her to his arms, hugging her. She didn't squirm. she simply stared at him when he pulled back to study her face. There was s silence as he smiled at her, lovingly, completely accepting his role as he brushed wayward hair out of her face.


The three stood there, clustered together, near the pasture fence. Outcasts the lot of them. A nameless, purposeless turncoat; a fugitive that had left her husband and secure life for retribution; and the youngest of them all too powerful for description as well as feeling out of place against the peaceful Shadow backdrop. Tasya stood tall, arms crossed at her chest, appearing relatively serene for the first time. The operative shifted next to her, and River slid past them to stand slightly in front and center. There was silence, minds strayed, but all ended up on the same question.

"What now?" Tasya finally spoke as a breeze picked up, russet and espresso locks of herself and the young woman fluttering in the cool air.

The operative set his hands behind his back, at ease, and glanced down at the ground. He still did not feel worthy of a honorable death. "I don't know, I once again appear to lack purpose."

"You have purpose." River announced. "Both of you, I, all three of us."

They focused on her.

"We have purpose."

"You know where to go from here?" Tasya quizzed.

"To the stars." dark eyes stared at the sky "There's insurrection to be had."

-THE END- *** *** *** DEFINITIONS/TRANSLATIONS Reng ran nin shen me du ran hou mei you shou?!: And yet you said nothing then?! An ding...: Settle down.... Bei pao qi de di yu kong....: Forsaken hell hole... Bei bi de e mo: Soulless fiends *****As always, the writer appreciates all comments whether they be positive, negative, or suggestions.**


Friday, March 6, 2009 1:01 AM


I just wanted to thank all of the readers as well as those who commented. Comments of all kinds are always a welcome sight. Praise boosts the writer's ego (we have such horrible egos) and criticism brings us down to ground level as well as improve the story. Also thanks to my buddy whom I bounced drafts/ideas/story arcs off of. You know who you are, and I seriously couldn't have gotten through this crazy piece of work (that's a platform for more to come) I envisioned without you.

Time for sleep,


Friday, March 6, 2009 3:00 AM


Wow. The pending "insurection" led by River, Tasya and the operative should be quite interesting.

Simon's reaction was spot on. Mal being the voice of reason was a pleasant change as he is usually the one to go off half cocked.

I look forward to Mal's dad and brothers patching things up and perhaps expanding the ranch? Or at least helping out with the spring cattle drive.

I hope Virgil's crew recovers as best they can. Maybe Kaylee can fashion a prosthetic for the other Doc (Name escapes me at the moment)

I'm eagerly awaiting more.

Friday, March 6, 2009 4:00 AM


This was intense and wonderful and I can't wait to see what happens next. Kaylee accepting Simon and River's children is wonderful, but is bound to bring some tension to the table.

Saturday, March 7, 2009 8:06 AM


I said it wasn't over. And insurrection? Can't wait!


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