The Bouncing Ball Ch 18
Sunday, January 23, 2011

Jane 0904 and I are writing up a storm. Another chapter of universe jumpin and twisty turns... Cat sees ghosts again...


Chapter 18

Mal skidded to a halt outside the infirmary, seeing Simon working frantically, River handing him tools as quickly as she could, Cat standing somewhat helplessly by. Something wrapped in a sheet lay on the counter, but his mind skittered away from what it might be. "Doc, what do you need?" "Take over from River." Simon was brusque, but for once Mal forgave him. "I don't know -" "I'll be in your mind," the young psychic said, holding the autocauteriser ready. "Can't Cat -" "Walls too high. No time to get through." She glanced at him, her dark eyes deep unreadable pools. Need you, jia yan. Nodding, Mal grabbed a pair of latex gloves and pulled them on. Sliding in next to her, he put his hands forward. "Ready," he muttered. Immediately he felt her in his head, not just talking to him this time, but controlling him, an echo that directed his hands, taking the autocauteriser and dabbing it on a tiny bleeder, and also somehow managing to keep the nausea at bay. River ran to the cupboards, taking phials and a hypogun, preparing a cocktail. "Not the -" Simon began. "I know." "Use -" "Yes." Mal was sure he could have closed his eyes and still have been able to do what he was doing, but didn't give in to the temptation to try. "Doc?" "Badger's reacting badly to the anaesthetic," the young man said, his voice calm even while his hands were a blur. "And he's bleeding uncontrollably, but I can't figure out why." "Jumping," Cat said quietly. "It can be a reaction." "He's had plastic surgery," Mal pointed out, the autocauteriser touching a vein and sealing it, the smell reminding him of Cat when she'd walked out of the burning building. "It can take a long time to set in." the redhead explained. "Delayed." "Every stitch I make is just ... I can't keep up." Simon might have been commenting on the weather instead of attempting to save a man's life. A bead of sweat began making its way down Mal's forehead, and he was sure it was going to fall into the red and white wound beneath him, but a hand snaked round with a swab, wiping it away. He glanced up. "Thanks." Freya smiled, just a slight lift to her lips. "No problem." She did the same for Simon, even as River was back at his side, injecting Badger into his neck. She quickly refilled a second dose. "Not yet," Simon murmured. "Yes." Time seemed to hang on a knife edge, fraying and close to breaking, then ... "River." "Yes, Simon." Somehow she had a second autocauteriser in her hands, working in tandem with Mal, only this time the blood flow was slowing, stopping. Cat watched as the young man used his immense skill to save Badger's life, suturing tiny blood vessels, redirecting others, and finally closing the flap of skin over the stump, his stitches as neat and precise as he was. "That's it," Simon finally said, taking a deep breath and dropping the needle and scissors into the kidney bowl. "Is he gonna survive?" Mal asked, unable to take his eyes from where River was applying dressings. "It's up to Badger." Simon shrugged. "He lost a lot of blood, then the reaction ... I don't know." "If it's really up to him then he's gonna live," Cat put in from her place by the counter. "Badge is a mean bastard, and he's not going to let go that easily." "Besides, I think he has a lot to tell us," Freya said softly, collecting used swabs and dropping them into a disposal bag. "Got that right." River drew a blanket over the unconscious man. "He must rest now," she said. "Gather his strength before Cat threatens him." Cat had to smile. "I don't think I'm likely to be the only one." "Got that right," Mal said. He looked at Freya. "You okay, xin gan?" She nodded. "I'm shiny, Mal." "Good. Good." He stripped the gloves from his hands. "Because I meant what I said before. Simon's gonna take a look at you, check you over, before anything else." "Okay, Mal." He knew she was being pre-emptively meek, and he had to make himself remember the anger he'd felt before. "Good. Good." He deliberately turned away from her, then found he was staring at ... "What about that?" he asked, nodding towards the shrouded leg. "I'll deal with it," Cat said quickly. "I think I can remember where the incinerator is." "No, I don't ... that wasn't what I meant. I've seen worse, Cat." His tone, tinged with sadness, had them in no doubt that what he'd seen had been truly horrific. "We all have," she added quietly. "And one of us has to do it. I was just suggesting I earn my keep." Mal finally smiled, even if it was only the upturn of his mouth at one side. "I conjure maybe you've done that already, keeping me and mine alive." "Then I should keep doing it." She picked up the leg, making sure the sheet was wrapped securely. "Thanks," Mal said softly. "No problem." "He gonna make it?" Jayne asked, idly cleaning his nails with Binky as she walked out of the infirmary, keeping as much of her body between the limb and the rest of the waiting crew as possible. "I wouldn't be at all surprised," she said. The big man nodded, then turned and bounded up the steps to the cargo bay. "Tell Riv I'll have the water ready for her," he called over his shoulder. "I'm glad he's going to be all right," Kaylee said, her hands gripped tightly together. Hank put his arm around her shoulders. "You're a good one, mei-mei," he said, dropping a kiss onto her head. As Cat headed up the stairs she could hear the conversation carrying on. "Honey, stop that and go and make sure we're still unnoticed," Zoe said. "Aw, he didn't mean nothing by it," Kaylee insisted. "Maybe not, but he could be making closer acquaintance with the couch." Kaylee laughed, her brightness coming back. "He'd have to fight the Cap for it tonight." "You think Freya's going to toss him out?" Hank asked hopefully. "If'n he doesn't stop being a cha gua chun zi, I wouldn't be at all surprised." Their voices died away, even to her sensitive hearing, but she could still tell someone was behind her. "Boss man." "I thought perhaps we had better talk." Book followed her towards the engine room. "Yeah, well, Kaylee's not going to be coming up here until I've seen to this," Cat said, lifting her burden a little higher. "And I've got a few questions of my own to ask." "Give me an example." She waited until she'd opened a section of the wall next to the heart of Serenity, sliding in the sheet-wrapped leg before closing it again, pressing a sequence of buttons on the small pad next to it. There was a slight tremble through the deck, and a light turned from red to green. Cat nodded in satisfaction - Badger's limb had gone up in smoke in the heat of the core. "Sorry, Badge," she murmured. Book steepled his hands in front of his chin. "You'd better ask me before I lose the inclination to answer truthfully." "That'll be a first." He smiled. "Try me." "Just what did you tell them? Just now?" "The truth." A perfect eyebrow raised. "Which version?" "The one Mal can handle." "Mal can handle a lot. Frey even more." "She has nothing to do with this." "No?" His face hardened a little. "If you'd done your job I wouldn't need to be here in the first place." "My job ..." Cat mused. "And just how has that worked out for you?" "There are rules, Cat, but as someone once told me, rules were made to be broken." Cat almost spat into his face, "You won't even bend them for me. Like it would be so hard." "You know why we're doing this." She shook her head, "I used to. Now, I'm not so sure." "The reasons don't change. The methods, perhaps, but the why always stays the same." "The greater fucking good." It was almost as if she was talking to herself. "Heard the sermons ... all about what you care about."

"And you have first hand experience of what will fucking happen if we don't make it work."

At his swearing she almost smiled, but it didn't reach her green eyes. "Don't let your Abbey hear you talk like that. Might get kicked out on your sanctimonious ass." "Cat, you think me and my kind live in a vacuum. We don't. I probably know more curses than you ever will." "Might know more curses, God Man, but you will never know what it's like to be cursed." Book dropped his head slightly, accepting the jibe. "Perhaps not." "Anyway, it's not just me." "Oh? Who else?" "What about about Freya? I saw a picture of you she keeps in her drawer. You were her mentor." She paused a moment, but he didn't deny it. "She is a good person. You hurt her... and I will let you explain to God face to face what you've done." "I haven't hurt her yet." "Tell her that." "I don't need to." Cat's eyes narrowed. "So it was you." She could feel her claws wanting to grow. "And you showing up out of the blue when you're suppose to be dead ... that tends to hurt, Preacher. No matter what you seem to think otherwise."

"Kaylee seems pretty glad to see me."

"Kaylee was happy Badger's going to probably survive," Cat pointed out. "She's always happy. And you aren't the same person as her Book. Kaylee watched that Book die. Not the same for Frey - you might have had a different name but it was you in her life." Book sighed. "I didn't intend to hurt Elena ... Freya."

"Didn't think you did. Doesn't change the fact."

He nodded slowly. "No. I know. And I will talk to her. Just .. not right now." Cat could see movement in the kitchen behind him. "Don't hold off for too long. Everything changes." "Except sometimes they stay the same." She glared at him. "Mal doesn't know you like I do. And I'm telling you not to keep stuff hidden. There are Readers other than River on board, and I don't think even you can keep your walls up high enough." "Are you threatening me, Cat?" "No." She smiled, her fangs showing clearly against her lip. "Promising." She strode past him, heading down the stairs before anyone in the kitchen could see her. The common area was now empty, although she could see Simon in the infirmary examining Freya, Mal standing just inside the door, four square, his arms crossed firmly over his chest. "Too many people not talking to each other ..." she muttered to herself before jumping up the steps to the cargo bay. Her sensitive hearing caught the sound of Jayne and River in the shuttle, his deep voice tenderly vibrating the air molecules, her power making the small vessel seem to glow from inside. Cat laughed - she hadn't realised her other side was quite so close to the surface. "Need to go somewhere and think," she muttered to herself. "Somewhere with stars." Batha, slinking out from behind a stack of crates, wrapped her tail around Cat's leg. 'Want company?' "Always." Ladders ... Batha thought, and sighed heavily before butting her head on Cat's shin. 'See to cubs first. Lady Captain busy with Medicine Man.'

'Okay. Time alone might be good for me.' ==== She was okay, and according to Simon about eight weeks pregnant. He still couldn't believe she'd not told him as soon as she knew, but maybe there were mitigating circumstances. "There were," she murmured, making him jump. "What?" Mal asked. "Mitigating circumstances." Freya tried a smile but it barely held. "Oh. Right." Simon slid his blood test kit back into the drawer then glanced at them both. "If you're going to have this discussion, I suggest you go somewhere else. Unless either of you is planning on making the other bleed ..." Freya slid from the counter. "No. At least, not right now." "Then go. I need to concentrate on Badger." "Is he gonna make it?" Mal asked, surprised. "I think so. He's lost a lot of blood, but I had several units of Jayne's on hand, and as he's the same type I think perhaps we're over the worst of it." "Jayne's?" Mal couldn't quite stop the twitch of his lips. "I'm holding that little bit of knowledge in reserve," the young doctor said dryly. "For when he's being particularly annoying." "Good job River's not here," Mal pointed out. The young psychic had filled him in on the datatab Badger had told Cat about before she'd gone to wash, saying she needed to get rid of the smell of weasels. "From the look she gave me when I hooked up the bags, I think she's got a good idea." He leaned back on the counter and crossed his arms. "And I thought you were going." "I am. We are." Mal turned to his wife. "Frey, I ..." He gazed at her, his blue eyes more unsure than she'd seen in a long time. "I'm ... glad you're okay. I mean ... you and the baby." He gestured towards her belly, then thrust his hands into his pants pockets. Freya held the sigh inside, but managed another slight smile. "That's ... nice." She put her hand on his arm. "Hadn't you better go and talk to Cat? Find out what Badger told her before the op?" "I suppose." "I'll be in our bunk when you finish." She squeezed faintly, then turned and strode out of the infirmary. They listened to her footsteps vanish up the stairs, then Simon looked at his captain. "You do know what you are, don't you?" he asked, one eyebrow raised. "Yeah, doc." Mal took a deep breath. "Yeah, I know. But maybe I've got bigger fish to fry right now." He stomped out of the room, heading towards the cargo bay. Simon exhaled slowly, then turned to look at his patient, still deeply asleep. "You surely chose an interesting ship to join," he said conversationally, before shaking his head and chuckling. "Simon?" It was Kaylee. "You okay?" He lifted his head and smiled at her. "Do you love me, Kaylee?" he asked. She hurried into the infirmary and into his arms. "Honey, a'course I do." "That's fine then," he said, kissing her lips gently. "That's all I need." Pulling back a little she stared into his face. "Simon, are you feelin' okay?" ====

Serenity's hull was cold... she always was cold now even when the engines burned hot. 'Ski's shirt, wrapped around her arms, did little more than blow in the cool night air as she lay topside on the hard metal skin. Badger was still out, and would be for some time to come, Simon still not sure he'd survive the night, and for a moment Cat felt the same lump form in her stomach she had the day the news of 'Ski hit her ears. Smoke touched her eyes and she sighed. "I ain't naked and I ain't in the shower."

"Nope, you ain't. Thought you could use the company though." Werzbowski stated as he blew another stream past her.

"Badger's gonna make it, 'Ski. Might whine a lot, but he's strong." She ran a hand through her long red hair. "Not sure Reynolds will keep him on the ship after though. Man knows something and I ain't sure he'll trust me enough to tell."

"Badger's always got a plan B, he'll bounce back.

"That was one thing I could always count on with you two, though I was usually plan B. It also seemed to always involve me getting shot or naked." She paused, pushing some hair from her face before continuing. "Frey and this crew treat me like I'm human. Want me not to kill, but treasure life. What the hell is that about?"

"You are human ... mostly," he insisted, an irritated tone creeping into his voice. 'Ski always hated it when she badmouthed her own genetics. "Besides, different strokes for different folks, Babe."

"Yes, Lao Gohn. I am mostly human." She smiled at him. "Guess it's what I get from travelling with Reynolds so long. By the way, just in case you were wondering, I ain't sleeping with your son."

"Didn't figure you would. He tried though, didn't he?" 'Ski smiled.

"He did. And then tore me a new asshole for leaving you. Got to admit he's got balls. Takes after his old man, but with more patience ... which he definitely got from his mother."

"You saying I'm not a patient man?"

"When it came to me? Yes. Anything you were pointing a gun at ... absolutely not." She smiled and leaned back on her hands staring up at the stars. "And then of course, we have your relationship with Mal ..."

"Reynolds ... I've never disliked someone so thoroughly that I respect so much."

"Think that had a lot to do with me." A dark shadow passed over them, an owl headed for the fields to hunt for food. "So, make as if you weren't some shadow in my head, and tell me what you would want to do right now."

"Drink, smoke ... screw. Then I guess help you on your mission."

"You always did have a way with words." She laughed. "And there is no way in hell I'd trust you with this mission. Bad enough I'll have Badger to look after."

"What? Now I'm impatient, and untrustworthy? 'Fraid I'll kill Reynolds the next time he's rude to you?"

"Yup." It was simple. "And you know that if it were possible, there is nothing more I want than you here with me."

"Would be nice to put my arms around you and actually feel it."

"Your voice ... your presence is enough." Her hand reached to touch his, but she knew it wasn't really there. "Guess going insane at all that bad ..." She shook her head, then went on quickly, "Now, what do you think I should do to get Badger to talk?"

'Ski smirked evilly. "I have a few ideas, he is my best friend after all."

"You wound me. I thought I was your best friend." She covered her heart as if he had shot it.

"You and I transcend friendship, Babe."

"I would threaten his manhood, but I think he'd enjoy that too much." Her lips curled in disgust. "You realize I had to carry him out of that building pressing against parts that man should never be able to touch on me. You owe me one - no ... at least two."

'Ski chuckled while pulling out and lighting another cigarette.

"Cat! Where the hell are you?" She could hear Mal and for a second, a gentle annoyed growl escaped her lips. "And reality comes back with a vengeance. Damn preacher is gonna hear exactly what to do with his damn time machine ..." she muttered under her breath.

"Hey Reynolds, I'm talking to my wife! Go stick the septic vac up your pi gu!" 'Ski yelled before sighing audibly. "Oh ... right."

Cat couldn't help but laugh. "You can finally tell him you actually won and you're unable to gloat. If that ain't irony ..."

"I finally don't have to worry about the consequences of kicking his ass, and I don't even have a solid appendage to use. The 'Verse ain't fair."

Mal's voice was a little closer. "Cat!! Gorram it, woman. When I say I need to talk to you ... I mean now." She could tell he was getting flustered, though it was more at his stubbornness with Freya than her, and her green eyes held a mischief she hadn't felt in awhile.

"You realize any one else talks to me like that and I'd slit his throat ... right?" Annoyance filled her voice as she touched the knife at her side. Taking a deep breath, she smiled, fangs rubbing her lip. "Time to play nice and pretend I'm doing all this for him."

Werzbowski ignored her, instead he had his eyes squeezed shut, and a look of intense concentration on his face.

"Please tell me you're not doing what I think you're doing."

"Trying to use our connection to make Batha bite him in the ass."

"All you had to do was ask." Cat grinned wickedly as the purr of a panther echoed in their heads. 'Sure not leg? Would be as easy and not chase after.'

'Just ass, Puddy Tat.' She channeled a bit of 'Ski as Batha sounded almost shocked.

'Reaver? Haunting you. Need him. Keep secret. Get Captain man.' "And you say I don't love you?" She winked at him.


"Cat!!" The cry this time was more hurried and less angry.

"And that would be my cue." She stood brushing out her clothes. "I figure tonight you'll be hangin' in my dreams. At least there, you can touch me. Still ain't real, but for now, it's what we have."

"I'll limber up. By the way, say hi to Badger for me."

"He already thinks I'm crazy. Let's add talking with his dead best friend." Her eyes danced as she watched him fade. "See you in a bit, Lao Gohn."

'Ski winked and blew her a kiss as he faded out. Looking at the stars, she stopped as the partially opened hatch popped open and Batha climbed out. 'Frey said no. Not want him any madder. Tell voice in head sorry.'

'Don't worry about. You would have, which is all that matters. How long before he finds us?'

'Any minute now....' Cat nodded and took her seat again, touching the spot her husband had been in. It was still just as cold as before.

"You don't think I'm crazy?" she spoke to the panther, who laid next to her on the very spot 'Ski had occupied. Cat knew Batha had done it deliberately, maybe to keep Mal from sitting there.

'We live. We see death. We cross many 'verses. Crazy caught up.' Her tail thumped hard against the hull.

"I've been talking with my dead husband. Not sure how much more before I take the plunge."

'Reaver keeps you here. Not giving in to dark side as much.'

"You think he's real?"

'I don't matter. You think he is. Good enough.'

"He's dead, Bat. My mind copes..."

'Need him... in head only way can. Real to you means real to me. No questions.'

"Why, Bat?"

'I stupid.' The panther chuckled.

"Apart from that."

'I not have family. You family. Say you do anything for family. Family understands. I understand.'

"You always have." She lay a hand on the dark coat, losing her fingers in the soft fur. "I'm just tired of running."

'This your mission. I am here for you. Reaver mate. Miss mate. Need him in heart and in head. Nothing else matters.'

"You know how I always hated Boss Man quoting Shakespeare? Maybe he's right ... there are more things in heaven and earth ..."

'Dead men tell tales.'

"Yes, they do ... of fantastic lands, golden beaches, silver oceans, and ..."

'Gators.' Batha sneezed before licking the wet from her nose.

"And also gators..." She laughed, ruffling the panther's face with her hands before laying back to watch the stars. The pale moon beamed off Serenity's bridge, and bathed the night in a soft, eerie hue.

==== Mal found her stretched out on the head of the ship, her feet just above the bridge's portals. Batha lay beside her, tail flicking over the clear glass, thumping it every once in a while. Cat's head rested on that dark green shirt, the one she had kept with her - the one he knew meant more than just material. "Good job it's stopped raining," he commented, keeping his boots firmly planted on the hull. "It wouldn't have mattered." She was gazing up into the night sky. Mal followed her eyeline, seeing the constellations high overhead. "River does this." "Stars ... when you're locked in a cage for so long, they seem to be the one thing you long for." "Xiao nu tends to come out here when we're in the black." Cat laughed gently, but whether at his calling River daughter or something else was unclear. "Yes, that sounds like her." "Course she does tend to wear a suit." He paused a nanosecond. "Would you need to?" "Still need to breathe." "Wasn't too sure." He hitched his thumbs into his suspenders. "By the way, Simon says Badger'll be coming round soon." "Really." "Uh huh." "And you thought I wanted to know this ... why?" "Just being sociable." "No." "Huh?" "That's not why you risked coming out here." She still wasn't looking at him. "You want to know if I will go get that data tab with you. And you came to ask privately because you don't want the rest of the crew to know you're going off alone with a homicidal maniac ... even if she's your sister." Mal's jaw dropped. "How the hell did ..." He paused, then glared at the big cat. "Batha." Cat chuckled. "Don't need to be a Reader, Mal, to read you. And I don't need a menacing panther either." "I didn't mean ... when I said ... I was angry." "Please, trust me. I've heard worse." "I hate to agree with you, but I'm guessing you're probably right. From me, too. Least, the other me." Cat now turned her eyes on him, and even in the ambient light there was something like hurt in them. "Actually, no, but we did have quite a few good fights in our time." "You mean like me and Frey." "I think you two are better at it." "Had a lot of practice. And she's okay. Simon told me she's fine. And the baby." "So you haven't actually spoken to her yourself?" "Well, not in quite so many words ..." "I didn't tell you because she didn't want you to know. I honour secrets, no matter who they will potentially hurt." He lowered himself next to her, feeling the chill of the Firefly's hull through his pants. "I guess I appreciate that. But I still don't get why she didn't want to tell me. Do you know?" "Because for some strange reason, she believes me." She smiled at him, then sighed. "She believed that if you knew it would affect your decision at the end of this. Funny thing is ... I know it won't. Family ... duty. In that order. No exceptions, bao bei." The last words were spoken quietly as if not really to Mal at all. Still, he'd heard. "Not yours. But then, you know that, maybe more'n anyone on board. And you're right. Family always comes first." He laughed a little. "Sometimes it don't feel that way, is all." "True," Cat said. "But I ain't on this damn crusade for the sake of duty." Mal couldn't help the smile. "Somehow I knew all that goushi about you not caring was a load of crap." "Don't tell anyone. That whole homicidal maniac reputation you know ..." He crossed his heart. "Promise." He lay back and stared into the night sky. "I'm actually pretty surprised you're not telling me to go and apologise to Frey." "Go apologise to Frey," Cat said half-heartedly. "There ... happy?" She paused, feeling his warmth and allowing his scent to fill her, an odour she longed for. "I ... I like this. It feels ..." 'Nice,' Batha put in, her tail flicking even harder. "It's not bad," Mal agreed, his body tensing a little. Cat rolled onto her side, propping her head on one hand. "I ain't trying to hit on you, Mal. I miss my friend." She licked her lips remembering what 'Ski had said about Badger earlier. "You really want to know what I miss most about you ... us? Being us. Late night talks ... drinks on the bridge where you told me why the next plan wouldn't get me shot ... drinks in the infirmary where you'd apologise again for getting me shot and you and whoever else ..." She lay back. "I miss my friend." Mal nodded, just a little. "I wish I could be there for you. I know what it's like to lose everything ... everyone you ever cared about. Damn near broke me after Serenity. If it wasn't for Zoe, I'd've eaten my gun back in the camp. Or made such a hell of a nuisance of myself they'd've shot me just to shut me up." "I know. I remember. Of course, for a little while, you were a nuisance to me." She smiled at the memories, then sighed. "Fine. I will go with you and find that data tab of Badger's ... on one condition ..." "Which is?" "You go tell your wife you're an idiot and you're sorry. In that order. And you say it like you mean it. Because if you don't, and something happens, you'll regret it for the rest of your life or hers. I'm not going into battle with a man whose mind is elsewhere." "You know, I could take exception to that." "You could, but you won't, because you know I'm right. Lip always twitches when you know I am." "'S'just old age creepin' up on me. Doesn't mean a thing." Batha sniggered. "Don't be as foolish as she was," Cat said firmly. "Listen to me for once in your gorram life." Mal sat up, half turning to look at her. "Are you calling my wife foolish? And don't go smiling at me like that." "In not listening, yes. As a whole, only as foolish as I was once for you." "Once, eh?" Mal shook his head. "Should I feel grateful or sorry for you?" "Neither." She got easily to her feet and stretched, the movement doing interesting things to her clothes and the body beneath. Moving to the edge, she looked over. "Go. I'll meet you at the bottom." "What?" Then his eyes widened as she stepped into nothingness and disappeared. He scrambled up and went as close to the side as he could. "Gorramit." From below in the darkness Cat's voice called, "I heard that." Mal shouted, "If'n I'd meant you not to, I'd'a used a lot more Chinese in it!" 'Idiots,' Batha scoffed. He looked at the huge panther. "And you can keep outta this too ..." 'Right.' "And give me my damn socks back ..." 'Nope.' He glared at her, but she was unrepentent, chuckling in his mind. As he made his way back to the airlock, he muttered, "One of these damn days ..." ========= AN: Thanks again to Werzbowski for lending his voice for 'Ski.


Sunday, January 23, 2011 12:23 PM


Nice to see Mal finally relaxing, even if it won't last.

- 'Ski

Sunday, January 23, 2011 1:52 PM


Yay, so glad that Mal and Freya seem to be heading back into positive territory, with or without a little nudge from Cat. I was so glad to see Cat have words with not-our-Book. He is kind of creepy and dark and I don't trust him one iota. Another great and shiny chapter! Ali D :~)
"You can't take the sky from me!"


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