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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - DRAMA
Simon is given a solution to his captivity. Mal comforts River and Adrian Bai reveals a darker side. Angsty.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 2297 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
Well, this is the end of this story. Thank you to everyone who continued reading.
I've never written something so long and I'm glad it was as well received as it was.
I'm very interested in hearing your opinions of the end. I wrote it with one intent in mind and my beta, after she recovered from her crying hysterics, thought I had intended something different.
I'm eager to know what you think happened at the end.
The Epilogue (if I decide to post it. I really think the end as I have written it is more poignant) will give you my original intent.
Thanks to Wanmei for the beta.
Simon sat in a small, colorless chamber, his arms and hands bound in front of him. He’d been questioned, but not as intensively as he might have anticipated. He was in a military brig, not in the, surprisingly, warmer confines of a Fed prison.
He’d been there for hours, lost with his thoughts, wondering, waiting – secretly hoping – that they would just kill him and be done with it. He should have simply injected himself with a fatal amount of potassium. He had plenty on hand in the infirmary. But he couldn’t – not until Serenity was safely away. If he was lucky, he would get the opportunity to end his own life before having to endure the torture he knew would come once the Fed’s came. He knew too much about Serenity and its crew and he knew there were methods that he would not be able to resist should they be used upon him.
His mind wandered to Serenity, to the family he had left behind. While not blood related, the crew of that beat up old ship had become like a family to him, and he would miss them terribly. He couldn’t have left River to the care of anyone else. He trusted them. And he knew they would protect her with their lives.
Kaylee was another matter entirely. She would be utterly broken by his lie. She loved him so deeply, and he her. But, he held some measure of hope in his overly romantic mind, that when the time came, she would open that bright, beautiful heart and find love again.
His mother and Alexandra were greater mysteries. There had to be more to the story than they had revealed to him. Could such a perceived betrayal have torn these relatives apart for twenty years? There had to be more. Political motives, career differences and choices. He would ask his – uncle, when he saw him next. If he saw him again.
Admiral Adrian Bai sat at his desk, re-reading the wave that would seal Simon Tam’s fate to one far worse than death. As he glanced over the text that would bring the special federal agents to his door, a twinge of guilt crept into his eyes and into his heart.
He had alienated his family for his power and his position. And it had given him great wealth. He had punished his wife for her inability to give him a child. His long, successful career had come at the expense of many a young life. And even now, it would come at the expense of another.
It wasn’t the first time he had sold his blood for power, prestige and position. As Adrian Bai sent the message, he reflected that at least it would be the last time.
He sent another message, this time to his wife and Regan Tam, detailing events he had witnessed and apologies he had never made.
He stood and walked to his waiting hovercraft. He had a few last things to finish before this chapter in his life had concluded.
Kaylee played and replayed the message, over and over, crying until she had no more tears left to cry. She fell asleep sitting on the floor, her head leaning against the end of the bed, with her arms wrapped protectively around the data pad containing Simon’s last message to her.
That was how Mal and Inara found her, looking so young and childlike with stringy hair stuck to her face and the salty stain of tears on her cheeks. Mal scooped her up and placed her in the bed, knowing that she would prefer to be here than in her own bunk. In fact, he had a sinking suspicion she would be moving into this room permanently, despite the lingering bad memories.
Kaylee muttered in her sleep, and they waited for a few moments to see if she would wake. She didn’t. Simply cuddled the data pad closer to her body and snuggled into the softness of Simon’s pillow.
River stared unblinking at the data pad as Simon’s message played. There was no hint of emotion on her face, no tears in her eyes. She simply watched and played the message back over and over while Mal stood to the side, waiting, expecting her to have a breakdown to rival any he’d ever seen.
After what seemed like the hundredth time, she simply laid her head back with a heavy sigh and closed her eyes.
For a moment Mal thought she had fallen asleep, until he looked down at her hands, knuckles white from where they clutched the data pad so tightly.
His breath caught when he noticed the tears roll down her cheeks from beneath tightly closed eyes. Her body shook with the effort of trying to keep the emotion bottled inside of her. For the first time, she wanted to be in control of her emotions, of her feelings. But she was not a whole girl. Not anymore. She felt it all; the steaming anger radiating off the man standing beside her to the intense physical heartache spilling out of Simon’s bunk. Her own emotion was lost among all the others, but it swept through her body like a thousand falling stars pelting her from above, threatening to burn her to ashes.
A sob escaped her lips and then he was there, holding her, supporting her, letting her cry. Mal wrapped his arms around River’s shoulders and she buried her face in his chest, the hard, hoarse cries flowing out of her in such a rush, she felt she would choke.
She cried hard and long for the brother who had risked everything, given up everything he had ever known for her – including his life. She had never hurt like this, so completely and absolutely. Even when they’d cut into her, over and over. She could protect herself from that kind of pain. She had done it for years. Retreating into the different parts of her mind.
She was out of her element entirely when the emotional impact of her brother’s unconditional sacrifice struck her like a thousand shots to the gut. The pain of her injury returned, but it paled beside the overwhelming pain that had driven itself like a stake through her heart.
The three men who had accompanied their commander to Serenity stood at attention waiting for their commander to speak. The proud looks on their faces revealed that they expected to be well-praised for their work in apprehending such a high-level prisoner.
Adrian Bai’s voice, professional and authoritative, echoed through the small shuttle. “I have deposited double your annual salary into your accounts, effective today.”
Bai paced in front of them, reached into his uniform and pulled out a long, cylindrical object. “Further compensation for your excellent work will be granted for every year of service until the age of retirement.”
The object clicked open as he paced, emitting a low, hypnotizing hum. “Your families will be cared for and they will be notified that you died honorably in service to your government.”
The men’s eyes widened as blood began to seep from their noses. Each stood in shock as their commander continued to speak. When fresh crimson began to spill from their eyes and their ears, each man screamed, one right after the other, until they lay motionless on the floor.
When the sounds had come to an end, Bai replaced the object in his uniform jacket and left the shuttle, sealing it with an unbreakable authorization code.
Simon glanced up as Adrian Bai entered the room, his face an emotionless steel mask. When Simon opened his mouth to ask the questions he’d been pouring through his mind since he’d arrived, Adrian raised his hand.
“I will do the talking. You will speak only when asked a question. Is that understood?”
Simon nodded slowly. “Yes.”
Simon complied without hesitation. There was no use in fighting so soon. He knew he would need to save some of his fight for later. If there even was a later.
“Follow me. Now.”
Simon did as he was told and as he walked with Adrian, beside and not behind the large man. He briefly wondered why man did not have an aid, or an escort. Did he think Simon so cowed, unable to free himself if provided with the opportunity? They walked in silence until Adrian stopped before a dimly lit panel and pressed the control, causing a large metal door to slide open.
Simon moved cautiously into the dark room and glanced around at all of the large containers stacked against the walls. His eyes narrowed as he recognized the all too familiar design. These were top of the line models and government issued only. Not typically available to civilians.
Adrian unlocked the restraints binding Simon’s arms and gestured at the containers. “I believe you know what these are.” A reclining chair from which hung thick restraints, and a table on which sat many different vials, waited nearby.
Simon swallowed nervously. “Yes.”
Adrian moved to the table that held a syringe full of an aqua-colored liquid. “Roll up your sleeve.”
Simon swallowed and did as he was instructed, instantly recognizing the medications lining the table.
“You want to know why.”
Simon raised his eyebrows and glanced around the room. “Yes.”
Adrian raised the syringe and approached Simon. “The sacrifices and choices I have made in my life are my own. I have done things, seen things, that you, one of only a very few people seeing the outcome from the outside, are capable of understanding. You’ve seen the destructive results of my work. These are deeds, because of who you are, you will never forgive. Nor should you. I will not watch you befall the same fate as all of the others. I will not let them cut into another innocent.”
Simon swallowed reflexively, understanding dawning behind his eyes. “You knew.”
Adrian exhaled a short puff of laughter. “I knew. Yes. I sent them to your parents. Just like I did so many other child prodigies. For our protection. For the good of the union of allied planets. I did my job with intense determination and I have the blood of hundreds of innocents on my hands because of it.”
“You gave my sister over to them.” Simon’s hands shook with anger. “You let them cut into the brain of a fourteen year old girl!” Simon pushed himself forward, fists clenching. “Why? Power? Prestige? Money? What did they pay you to sell out my sister?”
Adrian laughed, sending disturbing chills down Simon’s spine. He stepped over to a nearby container and pressed a button, revealing a small storage chest. He slid a data book out of his uniform jacket and with it a data stick. “All of the answers, all of the secrets, are contained within. Enough to topple a government, and then some.” He glanced over his shoulder at the closed door and Simon suddenly felt that time was running out.
Simon flinched as Adrian grabbed Simon’s arm and shoved the needle into it.
As the aqua fluid spilled into his bloodstream, Simon shivered, his veins constricting as the medication worked its way through his body. Simon knew what was going to happen next as his body metabolized this first injection. It would take some time, but each injection controlled a different part of his body, neural functions, motor functions, brain function. They would stop in specified, sequential order.
Adrian Bai dropped the empty syringe on the small table and walked to the door. “I trust you know how to measure the next set of injections.”
Simon swallowed thickly and glanced toward the table, upon which were two more syringes already prepped and several bottles of familiar drugs simply waiting for the proper dosage to be measured. “I do.”
“Then I will leave you to it.” The door slid open and Adrian didn’t look back as he walked out. “Goodbye Simon.”
Simon took a deep breath and walked to the table, eyeing the vials. He didn’t want to feel what would come next. He wanted to be blissfully unconscious. His hands shook as he carefully measured each dosage of medication, according to his body weight, and injected them into his bloodstream, wincing as the liquid burned through his system. A calm, weightless peace settled over his body as he felt the final sedative begin to take effect. It was only a matter of time now.
As he lay down on the chair, he closed his eyes, his heart rate slowing. His last thought before losing consciousness was one of Kaylee and his sister, running through a field of colorful flowers, sunshine lighting their faces, and laughter brightening their eyes.
Authors Note: The ending has been left ambiguous for a reason. I like to leave some imagination up to the reader and after my beta had finished this, she told me she hadn’t cried so hard in a long time. She thought what happened at the end was something different than my original intent. So, I leave it to you, the reader, to take from this story what you will.
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