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Virtual Firefly episode 1x22 (act three)
Wednesday, February 15, 2006

“Those Left Behind” (act three): This is the Season One finale of the Virtual Firefly project. This particular tale is adapted from the Dark Horse comic book miniseries. Check out our web site at stillflying.net!


CATEGORY: FICTION    TIMES READ: 1407    RATING: 10    SERIES: FIREFLY

INT. SERENITY – INARA’S SHUTTLE – NIGHT

Inara packs, ostensibly with the help of Kaylee (who is busy pointing her CAPTURE at everything) and River (who wanders around the room like a cat). Inara looks up from the box she’s putting candles into.

INARA Kaylee, are you ever going to put that capture down?

KAYLEE We gotta have records of everything. A bona fide Companion entertained clients on this very ship! In this very bed!

Kaylee aims the capture at the bed, which River is bending over and sniffing curiously.

KAYLEE (cont’d) For one sweet second, we was almost classy.

INARA You promised to help me pack.

KAYLEE Honest, Inara, why do you have to leave?

Inara looks at Kaylee uncertainly, signals that she should shut the capture off. Kaylee deactivates the device and puts it down.

INARA It’s complicated.

KAYLEE No, it ain’t, ‘Nara. Captain can be a real {piece of work} sometimes, but he really—

INARA What makes you think the Captain has anything to do with this?

Kaylee just looks at her.

RIVER Gone already. Left so long ago. Heart of metal. An iron shield.

KAYLEE (to Inara) Just talk to him.

Inara walks to the door.

INARA I…

She puts one hand on the door, as if getting ready to open it, but doesn’t move.

INT. CARGO BAY NEAR INARA’S SHUTTLE – SAME TIME

Mal stands on the other side of the door, his fist raised to knock. After a beat, he turns and walks away, heading toward the galley. Wash comes onto the upper catwalk, headed toward him.

MAL Had your chance to whine, Wash—

Mal tries to keep going, but Wash leans an arm against the railing, casually blocking him. Mal stares at the arm.

WASH I coulda took a lotta jobs, Mal. Could be piloting a cruiser. Full benefits, vacations… Plus, not so often with the death-defying.

MAL Must not be very fond of that arm.

WASH But I got this woman nearby, makes me do all manner of stupid things. Got me piloting this little rust heap and ducking pretty much everybody that’s ever heard of morals. Just so I can be around her.

Wash takes his arm off the railing and looks straight at Mal.

WASH (cont’d) This is an unhealthsome gig, Mal. It’s stupid. But doing something stupid to keep the woman you love nearby, even for a little while… Well, that’s the kind of stupid I don’t mind.

Mal walks around Wash, leaving him standing there.

MAL (over his shoulder) Just fly the boat, Wash.

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – NIGHT

Wash sits alone, plugs the datacard into one of the consoles. He flips some switches, hits some buttons.

Zoe stands in the doorway behind him.

ZOE Hey, sailor…

She comes over, sits on his lap, hugging him.

ZOE (cont’d) Got time for me?

WASH Always.

INT. SERENITY – CARGO BAY – DAY

Book lies on the exercise bench, grunting as he lifts a heavy weight repeatedly. Jayne stands over him, spotting him.

JAYNE Wanna talk about it?

Book single-mindedly pumps the weights.

JAYNE (cont’d) Didn’t think so.

INT. SERENITY – GALLEY – DAY

Kaylee’s preparing breakfast when Simon walks in. She nods a greeting as he comes over to help, but there’s just a world of awkwardness between them.

SIMON I feel like… If I’ve done something to offend you…

She doesn’t look up.

KAYLEE Ain’t that, Simon. It’s just… (beat) Serenity ain’t your home. Ain’t never gonna be.

SIMON Serenity’s been like a home to River and me.

KAYLEE (sad smile) But you got someplace else you should be instead. Ain’t here ‘cause you wanna be, but because you have to be.

SIMON That’s not what I’m saying…

KAYLEE Don’t have to.

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – DAY

Wash, sleepy-eyed, shirt unbuttoned, pilots the ship. Zoe, half-naked, slumbers under a blanket on the second seat.

Wash reacts to something in the forward window, hits a few controls, reining in the ship.

WASH (to Zoe) Honey, wake up. (into comm) Mal, rise and shine. I think you better have a look at this. On second thought, I think everyone better get up here…

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – MOMENTS LATER

The whole crew is on the bridge, looking out the front window. Mal refuses to make eye contact with Inara or Book, and Simon tries to move closer to Kaylee, but she shifts away, putting Jayne between them.

JANYE Gorram.

KAYLEE Cap’n…

RIVER It stinks like sex in here.

SIMON Captain, what am I looking at?

MAL The Battle of Sturges.

EXT. SPACE – SAME TIME – ESTABLISHING

The black above Sturges is filled with dozens, perhaps hundreds, of WRECKS of all size, shape, and color. The ships flip and spin lazily, a cross between a graveyard and a man-made asteroid field. Between the wrecks are smaller objects, including DEBRIS and CORPSES.

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – SAME TIME

Mal stares at the wrecks.

MAL (cont’d) More to the point, what’s left of it. Zoe, Jayne, suit up. Wash, Kaylee, find us some fuel.

EXT. SPACE

A massive ALLIANCE WRECK sits in the midst of the spaceship graveyard.

INT. ALLIANCE WRECK – DAY

A dark hallway, lit by creepy red emergency lighting, which is flickering and dying a slow death. Debris and dust float through the hallway, gravity clearly not working properly.

An AIRLOCK hisses open, and Mal, Zoe, and Jayne, all armed, all in spacesuits, float through.

MAL Wash, we’re in.

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – SAME TIME

Wash sits at the controls.

MAL (via comm) Grav generators must be knocked out, because we’re still floatin’. But breathin’, too. Ship’s still got atmo after all these years.

WASH Well, we’re just makin’ like garbage…

EXT. SPACE – SAME TIME

In the shadow of the Alliance wreck, Serenity floats near a smaller VESSEL, tethered to it by fuel lines.

WASH (cont’d, VO) A bit too convincingly, if you ask me.

MAL (VO) I didn’t.

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – SAME TIME

Wash leans back.

WASH Really, Mal, some of these ships, I think they’re in better shape than us.

MAL (via comm) A bit of respect, Wash… You’re among the dead.

EXT. SPACE – SAME TIME

The TICK is hidden in the wreckage near Serenity. It silently glides free.

INT. ALLIANCE WRECK – SAME TIME

Mal, Zoe and Jayne now have their helmets off, and float down a hall, pushing off against the walls. The interior of the ship is illuminated by their flashlights, as well as the red emergency lighting. They float into

THE MESS HALL

Where it appears a large battle was fought. The room is filled with dozens of floating BODIES (wearing both Browncoat and Alliance uniforms), WEAPONS, TRAYS, DECAYING FOOD, and other debris. Eveything slowly stirs and shifts.

Jayne looks around nervously.

JAYNE All these folk. Alliance and Independents both. (beat) It don’t seem right.

MAL Let’s get this done.

EXT. SPACE – SAME TIME

The Tick glides toward Serenity.

INT. SERENITY – INFIRMARY – SAME TIME

Simon walks into the room, a small box of supplies under one arm. He stops dead in his tracks, startled.

SIMON What the—

There’s broken glass and bloody handprints by one of the medicine cabinets. It appears that someone smashed the glass to get at the contents.

Simon looks down, now noticing some blood on the floor.

He turns and follows the trail of blood (drops on the floor, and period handprints on the walls) with increasing urgency

THROUGH THE SHIP TO THE PASSENGER DORM

Where the door to the room he shares with River sits partially open.

INT. SERERENITY – TAM’S ROOM – CONTINUOUS

Simon enters cautiously.

SIMON River?

River’s in bed, bloody, surrounded by opened bottles, spilled pills and syringes.

SIMON River!

She’s so weak that she can barely lift her head. She rolls her eyes toward him.

RIVER (weakly) Simon.

Simon rushes to her side and begins to examine her.

SIMON River what did you— Why did you do this?

He picks up one of the bottles, examining the label.

SIMON This is anesthetic, River. This is a LOT of anesthetic. (beat) Why?

He touches her hair.

RIVER Because they’re here, Simon. They’re here and I don’t want to feel it when it happens.

EXT. SPACE – SAME TIME

The Tick glides up underneath Serenity. The airlock/ramming set-up on top of the bridge makes contact with the Serenity’s underbelly (specifically, the cargo bay doors).

INT. THE TICK – SAME TIME

The Blue Hands sit at the controls.

BLUE HAND#1 Airlock established.

BLUE HAND#2 Prepare to breach.

INT. SERENITY – BRIDGE – SAME TIME

Wash plays with his dinosaurs as he talks into the comm.

WASH Nope, no problems here.

MAL (via comm) How we doin’ on fuel?

WASH Almost gassed up. Have her topped off long before you get back with all that shiny coin.

INT. SERENITY – INARA’S SHUTTLE – MOMENTS LATER

Almost everything has been packed up. Inara stands among the boxes, looking at a CAPTURE OF MAL. In the image, Mal stands, all mock-heroic, in front of the HOVER-MULE (this capture was taken during “The Perfect Sunset”).

SIMON (OS) Inara?

Inara looks up, startled, to see Simon and River in the doorway. Simon’s carrying River, who has all the power of a floppy ragdoll.

INARA My God, what—

Inara puts down the capture, and goes to him and they lay River down on the bed.

SIMON I’m sorry to barge in, but River… She’s had an… episode. I was hoping you could look after her while I run some tests.

They take a step away, both looking back at River in concern.

INARA Of course, Simon.

SIMON You’ll hardly know she’s here. She hasn’t said a word since—

River sits bolt upright in the bed.

RIVER BELLY!

She stands, looking first at Simon, then Inara.

RIVER (cont’d) Not yours. Not hers.

Before Simon can grab her, she flops to the floor and lies there, rubbing her hands along it as if soothing a pet.

RIVER (cont’d) Hers…

INT. ALLIANCE WRECK – BRIDGE – MOMENTS LATER

The Alliance vessel’s bridge is large, possibly larger than Serenity’s cargo bay. Again, it appears there was a pitched battle here, based on the number of floating BODIES and WEAPONS.

The red emergency lights flicker creepily as Mal, Zoe, and Jayne float in. Mal plays his flashlight across the room.

MAL (to Zoe) We where we need to be?

Zoe checks a HANDHELD DEVICE she’s carrying, looking at the screen.

ZOE Yes, sir. If you trust the datacard we got from Badger.

She points across the room, past the floating bodies. In the massive window, the wrecks of ships can be seen floating by.

ZOE (cont’d) Storage locker should be over there.

INT. SERENITY – CARGO BAY – SAME TIME

Simon, looking very agitated, and Kaylee walk down the stairs to the cargo bay floor. Shepherd Book is on the UPPER CATWALK, looking around.

KAYLEE Don’t think we’ll find nothin’ on Serenity’s tum to get greasy over. I ran a full diagnostic last time we docked for more’n a day.

Kaylee and Simon head off in different directions. He moves toward the exercise equipment, while she heads closer to the airlock controls.

SIMON I don’t even remember when that was.

KAYLEE Me neither, now that you…

She trails off, noticing that the CARGO BAY DOORS are open.

KAYLEE (cont’d) (to herself) Huh. That’s funny…

She heads to the open doors, peering cautiously down. As she does, a FIGURE erupts from the open doors, grabbing her. She screams as the Figure picks her up with ease.

The Figure, Blue Hand#1, tosses her across the cargo bay, but she manages to grab onto his shirt, tearing part of the shirt with her as she goes.

She hits the floor. Hard.

ON THE UPPER CATWALK

Book rushes to the railing, and looks down to see Blue Hand#1 moving toward Kaylee. From his angle, he can only see Blue Hand#1’s back, as the man reaches inside his jacket for something.

BOOK Kaylee!

ON THE CARGO BAY FLOOR

Kaylee begins to pick herself up. Blue Hand#1’s shadow passes over her, causing her to look up.

KAYLEE (small) Oh God.

Blue Hand#1 stands over Kaylee. Where his shirt has torn, we can see that he’s wearing rubberized BLUE BODY ARMOR straight up to the neckline of his previously-buttoned-down shirt.

He has a RODLIKE DEVICE in his hands, its spicules extended. The device begins to hum.

INT. ALLIANCE WRECK – BRIDGE – SAME TIME

Mal hovers over an open STORAGE LOCKER, looking in.

MAL {That monkey-raping son of a motherless whore}!

The storage locker is empty.

JAYNE S’pose I shoulda seen this coming. Better yet, s’pose you shoulda, Mal.

Mal glares at Jayne, but says nothing. He angrily pushes off from the locker, moving to the center of the room. Zoe and Jayne follow.

MAL When I get my hands on that bastard—! ZOE Don’t make no sense, Captain. Where’s the payoff for Badger in lyin’ to us like this? He’s gotta know we’ll come back—

JAYNE Don’t matter. Ain’t no coin.

He looks at the floating bodies, more than a little edgy.

JAYNE (cont’d) Ain’t nothin’ here but us and dead folks.

DOBSON (OS) Funny…

Dobson floats into view, gun aimed at them.

DOBSON (cont’d) I was thinking the exact same thing.

COMMENTS

Wednesday, February 15, 2006 7:17 AM

BURNANDBOIL


WOW :O


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