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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
This is just to start the ball rolling, as our Big Damn Heroes encounter an Alliance officer with a conscience (c'mon, there'd have to be ONE) and the people of Haven may yet get a little justice.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1780 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
I.A.V. Dortmunder200 metres off Serenity’s port bowTen days after the Miranda wave
Commander Lindayne deVries had entirely expected Reynolds’ reaction to her statement: he collapsed in paroxysms of incredulous laughter. This went on for nearly two minutes, until he regained a measure of control, still whooping.
She didn’t move, nor react. She knew that was what he expected her to do. Her detailed study of his profile told her how this would play out. Reynolds looked out of the screen at her again, expecting her to show annoyance or exasperation. She did neither, simply waited patiently.
Finally, she asked mildly, “Are you done?”
“Do you guys have time for jokes? Ain’t you all too busy bringin’ the light of civilisation to them as don’t need it?”
“Save the sarcasm, please. I’m quite serious. I’ve been authorised by the Parliament directly to pay you 10,000 square just for hearing me out, and a further 90,000 if you agree. It’s an easy job, relatively little risk or work, and it won’t even cost you any fuel to speak of.”
Predictably, the crew’s interest perked up somethin’ keen at that, though Jayne scowled. “Can’t trust no ruttin’ Alliance, Mal.” He then, surprisingly, affected a contrite look. “Hell, I should know.” Mal did not belabour the point in front of the others; there was no need, it was settled. He knew Jayne had genuinely regretted what he’d done.
He’d have spaced him without hesitation otherwise.
“We sure could use ten thousand square, Cap’n,” Zoe mused.
“It wouldn’t hurt to hear them out, Mal,” Inara pointed out reasonably.
“Might if they haul us in,” Jayne growled.
“You all three got a point…Commander, what kinda guarantee can you give me an’ mine we ain’t gonna regret this?”
“Given that you’ve been bound by law five times, I can understand your concern,” deVries responded sardonically. “I’ll come over in a med-shuttle, alone, unarmed, and transfer to your ship via whichever airlock you designate. The Dortmunder will then back off to a reasonable distance, to give you room and time to escape if you’re of a mind to. Of course, if I’m already on board that’ll add kidnapping of a Federal officer to the charge sheet, and you’ll be out 10,000 square since I won’t be able - or willing - to authorise the credit transfer, but it’s your choice.”
“Credit transfer?” Mal frowned.
“It’s my understanding that a Registered Companion, one Inara Serra of Sihnon, travels with you. The funds can be paid directly into her account, to ensure security for both parties. You’ll understand if I prefer not to come aboard your ship with that amount in actual coin,” she finished wryly.
“Smart lady,” Mal conceded, smiling slightly. “Inara, you okay with this?”
“Yes, certainly,” she replied softly. “This sounds intriguing.”
“They’re bein’ entirely too reasonable,” Mal said doubtfully. “Don’t like it.”
“It’s better than having them shoot at us, surely,” Simon opined. “And there must be a reason for their being so reasonable - hmm, that sounds like something River might say…In any case, I think we are in the stronger position. There’s only one explanation I can think of as to why they’re requesting our help rather than simply arresting us.”
“And that would be?”
“Obvious: they need us for some reason.”
Mal thought about that. He met Zoe’s eyes, knew they were thinking the same thing:
Time to put our crazy little psychic to work.
As it turned out, there was no need. Silent as a ghost, River’s head suddenly appeared over Mal’s shoulder. “Gaah!” he yelled. River smiled mischievously.
“How in the hell do you do that, little albatross? No, never mind; what can you tell us about -”
“Nothing from this distance. Echoes lost in the waves.” She looked serious. “They’re not there. It’s okay.”
‘They’? Mal wondered.
“River?” Simon asked gently. “Are we in any danger?”
“Two by two...hands of blue...her hands aren’t blue and there’s only one of her. Not blue. It’s okay.”
“She’s come out with that before, Mal,” Jayne recalled; he wasn’t gonna forget anythin’ ’bout that Ariel business any time soon - ’specially not the way it ended. “That ‘hands o’ blue’ crap...what the ruttin’ hell’s it mean?”
“I think it refers to Alliance agents,” Simon suggested. “High-level cleanup operatives, that is. I believe she’s saying they’re not involved. That Commander deVries is on the level.”
“Pickin’ up the lingo, ain’tcha,” Mal approved amusedly. “I take it what she picks up will be clearer if deVries is actually on this boat?” Simon nodded, as did River (she was clearly imitating him, as became clear when she stuck her tongue out at him). “Okay, Commander, we’ll bite. Come in nice and slow, and make for the dorsal airlock. We’ll meet you there. Jayne: I think Vera might appreciate a trip outdoors a spell.”
Jayne grinned savagely. “Got it.”
HavenFormer mining settlementEleven days after the Miranda wave
deVries and Mal walked through the settlement, Mal pointing out the former homes of the deceased inhabitants as they went - not out of malice, but for information. But when he pointed at the remains of Bernabe’s hut and told her what they’d found there, she quietly pleaded with him:
“Please...no more. I hear you. Please don’t.”
He nodded, and they continued...towards the graveyard he and his crew had made.
Mal stared for a while at Shepherd Book’s grave, remembering that remarkable old man with such a mysterious past. Zoe had told him about Book’s part in the rescue at Niska’s skyplex; he’d been impressed with her tales of Book’s deadly accurate shooting. “As good as Jayne, easy,” she’d told him. Somehow he didn’t find it hard to believe.
“A friend?” deVries inquired solicitously as Mal reached out to touch the makeshift gravestone. “I mean - well, they were all your friends, weren’t they? But this one was...?”
“Truth be told, I dunno what he was,” Mal told her frankly. “Hell of a shot for a preacher man, I can tell you that. Derrial Book, his name was; a Shepherd from Southdown Abbey on Persephone. A good man.”
“I’m truly sorry,” she told him sincerely. “Can...can we get down to business...?”
He stared at her, not understanding.
“The...bodies,” she explained delicately. “We need to retrieve the slugs from them, confirm they’re Alliance issue. Believe me, there’s nothing I’d rather not do,” she added hurriedly, “but we have to have proof. We have an ordained priest aboard Dortmunder; she’ll make sure they’re reburied decently. You have my word on that. Hell, I’ll do it myself,” she decided determinedly. “I don’t know what else I can do to prove my sincerity to you.”
“I already got that,” Mal murmured. “I appreciate it. I’ll give you a hand. These folks deserve decent treatment.”
She looked around the wrecked mining site, somehow seeing it as it had been, and nodded. “Yes. They do.”
Tuesday, May 3, 2011 1:59 AM
Tuesday, May 3, 2011 5:39 AM
Tuesday, May 3, 2011 7:20 AM
Tuesday, May 3, 2011 12:04 PM
Tuesday, May 3, 2011 7:52 PM
Wednesday, May 4, 2011 2:13 AM
Wednesday, May 4, 2011 2:26 AM
Tuesday, May 10, 2011 5:58 PM
Thursday, May 12, 2011 5:04 AM
Thursday, May 12, 2011 11:27 PM
Saturday, May 14, 2011 6:02 AM
Saturday, May 14, 2011 6:06 AM
Tuesday, May 31, 2011 3:15 AM
Wednesday, June 1, 2011 2:02 AM
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