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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - DRAMA
Good morning Firefly browncoats. I’m posting up a new chapter of the “Purple Js” fan fic below. I’m veering off the beaten path on this one, and there was a bit of a debate in my mind if I should include it? I offer up a bit of back-story that will become more clear in later chapters, so I ask that you bear with me on this one and if it isn’t to your liking I understand, still I felt a desire to put it up. Thanks for reading…….. Also, in my mind the character of Carlos Coffer would be played by a young Bill Paxton, just a visual to set the stage, Z
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 393 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
Purple “J”s : part 7
“The story of Carlos Coffer”
The man had grown up considering himself of lesser value. Carlos had always had feelings of being just a thing, an item, an image, a person who’s memory would be stowed away in a photo book in the family attic to collect dust. Not of much value or interest to anyone, but something also that didn’t end up on the trash heap. Maybe like an old scrapbook, something that’s worth diminished with the passing of years. Of less than the sum of the whole that made up the Coffer family.
The Coffers had a proud lineage on the rim world of Aberdeen, with a notable ancestry. Amos Coffer, Carlos’ father, was a lawyer who often defended clients in the courtroom of Judge/Attorney, Anthony William Paxton in the southern hemisphere of Aberdeen, in the territory of Waylon.
Carlos for years, had felt himself of little concern. As the oldest boy, with two older sisters that outpaced him academically, and a younger brother, and baby sister taking up all their mother’s attention, he felt neglected. His father, more or less had little time for his children, although the man tried. Carlos had spent much time growing up without parental influence, at least what may have been needed to keep him on the straight and narrow path of righteousness. During this time he took to following the wrong group of youths, and had gotten into many a disturbing altercation with the law. The boy was rebellious and had become aggressive, and troublesome in the early part of his life. For seven years he created suffering and anguish for his father and mother, not necessarily to cause them pain, but likely to gather more attention to himself. It had all come to a head when he’d been brought before Territorial Judge Paxton for the crime of stealing cattle, and selling them on the underground-market. The judgment by Authority Paxton had been that he could either go to the mining pits to the north, or serve a term in the newly former Independence fighting brigade on Aberdeen. The troubled youth had opted for the latter, thinking that it would keep him out of the pits, which it did, and establish him with some form of direction for the future. Maybe it was just what he needed. He realized that a life of crime was not the avenue to take. It had also been the recommendation of his father as the right thing to do.
Carlos had volunteered to become a soldier, and had done fairly well adapting to military life. It had given him the structure that he needed, and rewarded him after a job well done. He had attained the rank of corporal after a short period of time but soon his fate would change and he would find himself regretting the choice he had made. His regiment, the 101 dìmiàn chóngzi (ground Bugs) under the command of Kirby Casey had been enlisted as the front line of protection for the southern territory states of Aberdeen.
Once war had broken out with the Alliance, Carlos’ unit found themselves in a skirmish that had been both savage and brutal. It had also ended badly . They’re platoon had been overrun by an Alliance force early in the Battle of Timber Falls and he now found himself in a line of ten, dust caked, dirt ridden browncoat soldiers being viewed by a purple-belly Major by the name of Bart Stanton. The Major wore the proud insignia of Purple Jaguars upon the left sleeve of his uniform. It was an emblem Carlos would never forget.
The Purple Jaguars were rumored for their brutality, and were firmly identified with the “Scorched Earth” doctrine. The teaching that once a territory was conquered, it was put to the torch, and it’s populace was enslaved or driven out. It was all written in the book of Shan Yu.
The Alliance officer walked down the row of browncoated soldiers, stopping long enough to look into each man’s face and study his manner, and his attitude. Major Stanton had been schooled in the ways of reading people. Just by the way they stood, looked, and held eye contact, told him volumes about their character.
“So, you bunch of filthy, back-world hillbillies! You bits of rank humanity….. thought that you would fight for an army that could challenge the supremacy of the Core worlds did ya? You low life maggots! The Core worlds are the very planets that sought to build atmospheric processors out in the dung heap of the galaxy! Machines to produce breathable air on rotten spheres, like this one. Rotten globes, in a rotten quadrant, for the whole rotten lot of ya, and rebellion is how you repay that debt?”
The Major stood back and viewed the entire line of browncoats.
“Well maybe you chose wrong! I doubt that there’s a handful of worthiness in the whole bunch of you! I’ll bet there isn’t a true man of bravery within this whole line of yellow-coats,” he paused a moment crunching down on the cigar held within his clamped teeth, “is there?”
He noticed his words had caused a definite irritation among the line of men, yet they remained silent, fearing what would happen to them if they spoke against him. It was just what the Major had wanted.
“Have Becket bring up the ji guànche (chicken wagon). Some of these men will be making a stop behind Alliance lines. A trip that they will no doubt be regretting!”
The Sergeant gesture for a vehicle to approach. A truck arrived, olive green and old, yet sturdy and powerful enough to carry a full load of prisoners. The back had a sheltered top, and canvas side to keep the dust of the countryside from coating it’s load while en root to their final destination.
“So, what to do?” The Major rubbed his finger and thumb over his chin, “There has to be something. A dutiful payment for the men lost while the great Alliance juggernaut was gaining victory over this pile of gos se?”
He looked at the men standing before him.
“There has to be someone among you, the lowest of the low. Maybe more than one. Folk who know their life isn’t worth a crap-hill anyway. A body that,…..for one moment has the gumption to step forward three paces and separate themselves from the pact. An individual who’s value is but a spec of dust on a salamander’s ass!” the Major looked around, “ A sacrifice!” He, and his men looked at the line of Independent fighters.
The browncoat soldiers turned their heads to view one another, Carlos did too. Who would it be? Who would step forward for the cause. Coffer felt that the Major had specifically called him out, identified him from all the others. His miserable life had not meant much to this point, why shouldn’t he be the one to step forward? In his mind he had been the one chosen to do the deed. He was destined to make restitution for the suffering he’d caused his parents, his family and all of humanity for his worthless existence. With a deep sigh Carlos turned his sights forward and took three steps in front of the line.
Major Stanton was shocked! He’d tried this ploy before, many times, and never had any takers. He looked over at his lieutenant pausing a few moments in deciding what to do. He finally spoke.
Stanton viewed the boy with more respect than he intended.
“On your knees,” he said.
Carlos fell to the ground before the Major.
“So you deem yourself unfit to take another breath?” The commander of the Purple Jaguars spoke quietly while pulling out his revolver, putting it to the soldier‘s forehead and cocking the hammer back.
“It may do you good to make your peace with God son.”
The moment was intense. Carlos closed his eyes and readied himself for oblivion. A smile then creased the Major‘s face, and he holstered his weapon.
“Well my boy you have just saved your soul.” He said a bit with a laugh.
Corporal Coffer’s eyes flew open!
“ Stand up,” Stanton said, then he turned his head slightly to the left, “Sergeant!”
“Get this man a horse!”
A mount was brought in and Carlos was place upon it’s saddled back. The Purple uninformed Major approached the young twenty two year old browncoat soldier.
“The Alliance army is that way,” Major Stanton pointed in the direction south. He took the reins of the horse and faced the animal north.
“Tell the Independence army that they have no way of winning,” he said. With this, a swat on the rear the animal spurred it forward towards the Independence lines.
The Major again returned his attention to the remaining group of nine browncoats.
“Anyone else feel the same? Question their loyalty? Think that they may haps have joined the wrong side?”
Six soldiers took three steps forward. The Major looked at his Lieutenant and smiled. Stanton walked and placed himself in front of the three men who’d stayed their footing upon the ground where they’d initially stood.
‘So you soldiers feel that you have worth?” He looked from face to face, “you fight for a cause that you believe in?”
The three never uttered a word. They stood up straight and proud!
“Ok, join the Lieutenant over there.” The Jaguar commander pointed to an area several paces from the others. When the three had assembled at that point he again walked over to them and looked each one squarely in the eye.
“You men are about to witness what happens to those that I distain. A feeling of uncontrollable loathing for folk that my men and I have no stomach for!” As he spoke the Major walked to and fro in front of the three browncoats.
“So you boys feel a bit of honor about yourselves, a bit of dignity? Well we’ll soon see how you feel about what happens next?”
With this the Purple-Belly Major moved away from the three men. He gathered his Lieutenant beside him.
“Boys, it’s your lucky day,” he spoke looking at the three browncoat soldiers, “Sergeant!”
On command the Purple Jaguar Sergeant shouted an order, the canvas flap on the ji guànche lifted, and in an instant machinegun fire erupted from the back of the prison wagon mowing down the six browncoat prisoners that had stood in a line. Their bodies fell in a heap on the ground almost as one.
The three remaining browncoats stood with their eyes transfixed. Their lives had been spared. The Major looked at them.
“I detest weakness and lack of commitment,” he said, “Corporal Coffer showed bravery, and you three showed pride and a willingness to stick to your beliefs,” he paused a moment, “….hold the person over the volcano’s edge and on that day you will meet the man!” He quoted Shan Yu.
The three browncoats looked at the Major. They had no idea what he was speaking of? The purple-belly officer looked at his Lieutenant and smiled. He returned his attention to the remaining browncoats.
“You men may had survived the trials of a firing squad,” he said, “but you’ll still have to prove your worthiness in a POW camp. Load up into the wagon.”
Carlos Coffer, riding the horse towards the browncoat lines had heard the shots from the rapid fire auto weapon. He dreaded to think what had befallen his comrades that he had left behind. He made a pledge to himself that he would honor those men. He would rejoin the fight, gain rank and hunt down Alliance hit squads such as the Purple Jaguars. He urged his stead onward to a faster pace.
END PART 7
Tuesday, May 29, 2012 1:26 PM
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