Captains and Spies, Pilots and Princes. Chap 7: An unexpected rescue for Wash.
Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Our BDHs rescue the prisoners. Action, a little angst at the end, and River talking to Serenity! What more could you want!


River sat alone on the bridge of Serenity at the pilot’s console. Her eyes were closed. She was listening to Serenity. Hearing the ships thoughts and feelings. Serenity was scared as they drove down to the planet. Don’t be afraid, River told her. Daddy won’t let you die. I won’t let you die. I nearly died on Miranda. You survived. You went into the darkness but came back into the light. The other one didn’t though. My guide died in the darkness. He is here with us now. Part of you, part of me, part of us all. But he is gone, never to be in me again. Ni shi cuo.


Lieutenant Ursula Kalip sat in at the pilots console in the cockpit of their ship, and thought about what was about to happen in the next… she checked the chronometer… 45 minutes. She would launch the mark 6 EMP missile and 15 seconds later the warhead would detonate taking out every single electronic system in a 3 kilometre square area. Serenity would then set down, rescue the prisoners and fly off again. Simple. It was what would come after that would be more difficult.

It was only after they had brought the information of the former Alliance Operative, that she had proposed this plan to the Colonel. He had told her that it would detract from their primary mission on the core worlds. She had told him that they might be able to get Malcolm Reynolds to join them with an operation like this. With him in their side they could get access to River Tam. This had piqued the Colonel’s interest. She knew that he had been annoyed when they had let her go to Persephone to be with her brother, but they had little choice. They wouldn’t have been able to deal with the girl in her state when the Doctor broke her free from the Academy. So they sent to her brother hoping to catch up with her later. Well after this she would be put to use that the IID, no, the Independent Revolutionary Army had in mind for her. A physic and assassin was very useful when you planned to wage a war to bring down the government.

She smiled to herself and checked the chronometer again. 30 minutes to launch. Time to wake the Colonel. He wouldn’t actually be doing much, but he insisted on being here to make sure that Serenity and her precious cargo weren’t harmed.


Doctor Jacque Torres looked in the mirror of above the sink in the laboratory and sighed. He was old and tired, despite what the treatments to his face were supposed to tell him otherwise. He turned to the main table in the laboratory. Like the whole facility, it had an after party feel to it, Jacque always thought. The golden days were gone, but Jacque still believed the dream of eternal youth, of immortality was still one to pursue. So, he didn’t have the supporters he once did, but one day they would regain the faith that kept him going all these past 100 years.

Today he was going to test a new surgical procedure that would replace the bodies’ bones with ones that would last forever. He had done similar things before, but these new bones were superior to the titanium alloy ones he had used in previous years. But who to use? He looked down the list. There weren’t many to chose from but he decided that it would be best to use the newest prisoner. Washburne was his name. He had been sent here by some Alliance Operative, with massive trauma to his abdomen. It had been difficult but Jacque had saved the man’s life. Made him anew, so to speak. And now the man was going to help Jacque. He tapped a few buttons on the console, sending a message to the guards to bring Washburne to him.


Wash sat down to breakfast in the camp, Jalina, beautiful bright Jalina, walked over to him with two bowls of zhou. He smiled at her and she kissed him on the head as she sat down. It sent a tingle down his back. It was the first kiss he had received off her and it was wonderful, even if it was just on his head. Bù yào jǐn. He had all the time till he died. It was not as though anybody would be crazy enough to come and rescue him from here. And why would he want to them to? Here Alliance and Browncoats sat and worked together. He had good friends, a beautiful girl sitting beside him and a bowl of zhou. He settled down to the task of eating, when a klaxon sounded followed by the voice of one of the guards over the PA system. “Hoban Washburne report for testing. You have 10 minutes to report. Hoban Washburne report for testing.” “Lao-tyen, boo!” Jalina said. “Gos-se.” Wash whispered under his breath. Thomas came in to the mess tent, “Wash, listen mate there’s nothing you can do. I know its pì huà, but just have faith that you’ll survive this day to go on. “You guan bi dao xiang Thomas!” shouted Jalina. She was crying now. Wash got up. He terrified. He knew that this moment would come one day when he had learned what this place was, but it didn’t make it any less scary. “Thomas, I’m really scared now.” “I know Wash. Just imagine you’re in some happy time, and keep the faith.” “Right, a happy place,” There was a beat, then “I don’t know if you remember, that I don’t remember much at all. So what happy times am I supposed to remember exactly?” Thomas gave him a look, and just mouthed “Jalina.” Wash didn’t say anything then nodded his head and started walking towards the main building. “Shén qǐng zuò wǒ yī kuài shí tou.” Now, he thought to himself, would be a good time for a rescue.


Mal looked around the cargo bay on Serenity and felt the tense readiness that the crew always had before a job. Kaylee was helping secure the last of their cargo was squared away. She was nervous, Mal knew, but there was something else, other than this, that had been distracting her since they picked up the post. He reminded himself what exactly that was after they got out of this. Simon and Inara were setting out his emergency triage area for the incoming prisoners. Mal was glad that she had decided to stay for so long with out any work for herself. She had told him privately that Miranda had affected her more than she knew. Plus there were other reasons for her not wanting to not be a companion for the time being, she had said. Mal thought he thought he might know what those were, and he privately smiled at the thought.

Zoe was steady, unreadable, but Mal knew that she was readying herself. She had put on her own body armour and was now putting out additional weapons for the three of them to have to hand. Jayne was checking his own weapons. He had been excited when they had received the additional weapons that they had requested from the IID. He had spent most of that first day cleaning and naming each in individual one. He had Vera over his back, with one of the shiny new assault rifles that he called Betty in one hand and at least four pistols strapped to his body.

Mal switched on to comm. up to bridge on, “River…” “2 minutes Captain.” “How’d you know what I was going to ask you? No, don’t bother answering question.” Switching the comm and under his breathe “Wish she’d stop doing that. Kaylee!” He shouted out, “In the engine room. I want you to keep us in the air. Doctor, Nara. Keep behind cover and help them as we get the prisoners in. Zoe, Jayne. Front and centre.” He didn’t bother turning the comm on again, instead calling out, “River. Just fly us safe.” Up on the bridge, River said, “We will.”


The chronometer read zero. Ursula pressed the firing button, and watched as the missile streaked away……


Thomas stood their watching Wash walking towards the main building and prayed for him. Prayed for God, if he was there, to give the man the strength to get through what was waiting for him. Suddenly he felt a wave had passed through him and then his left arm went dead. Thomas knew one thing that could do that to electronic systems, and it was either something very good or very bad. What ever was about to happen, Thomas knew that he didn’t want to be out in the open. He called out, “Wash! Sally! Everybody! Get into to cover now! Don’t worry about the control devices! Get into cover now!” He grabbed Jalina’s arm and ran for a ditch that the prisoners had dug to use for irrigation of the vegetables.


The Camp Commandant was standing in the control room of the base, reading the duty watches reports when all the systems went down. “What the kao! What happened?” “All our systems have shut down, sir.” The Warden flicked a couple of switchs, “Even the back ups dead. Nothing is working!” He thumped the console. The Commandant looked through the window down to the camp. The prisoners were running for cover. A memory of long distant war stirred in his head. Doctor Torres came running in. “What dans le monde is going on?” He shouted. The commandant turned and calmly told him “We are under attack my good Doctor.” He smiled. Relieved almost, would be what on of the survivors would say. “Someone has come to rescue those left behind.” “Merde,” swore Torres and ran out to escape. The Commandant watched the Warden and the other guards run to take up defensive positions as a ship, great and birdlike, swooped through the valley and came to a hard landing square in the middle of the far end of the camp. He sat down in a vacated chair, and lit a cigar.


Before they had even touched down, Mal had the cargo bay door open and had fired his first shot straight into the shoulder of the first guard to round the corner up on the wall surrounding the camp. He ran out, Zoe and Jayne to his left, firing and took cover immediately in front of the ship behind a metal table that fallen its side by Serenity downwash. He called out to the nearest group of prisoners lying on the ground, their hand over their heads, “Quick! Into the ship! We’re here to rescue you!” They gave each other nervous looks, before they slowly started crawling towards him. A hail of bullets from the guards were sent his direction and he fired back. “A bit quicker with the movin’ and escaping would be greatly appreciated!” He told them as he and Zoe moved forward to cover the remaining prisoners.


River sat on the bridge, avidly watching the rescue unfold before her eyes. She was telling Serenity not to be afraid. The bullets hitting her were nothing. They could do no more harm to her, than a twig could hurt River. Serenity calmed, but River felt something else. It was from the guards. She looked and saw them setting up a large looking cannon. Serenity’s port engine, still over turning even though they had set down, was directly head of it. She activated the comm. to the engine room. “Kaylee, I need you to flood the port engine with raw fuel.” “What! But River that will…” “I know, but trust me Kaylee.” River flicked a few controls on the console, and the port engine swung so that its rear was facing the front of the ship. A read out told her that raw fuel had been flooded into the engine. She flipped another switch, and……


Ursula swung her ship round in time to see the guards’ cannon be enveloped by a massive jet of flame from Serenity’s port engine. Yē sū! It was quickly turning into a war zone down their. She had destroyed the camp back up power, but the effects of the EMP would have worn off now. They needed to get this finished. She tapped a sequence in the controls and a message came up saying that her M-238 tac missiles were ready to be fired. She brought up the targeting display and acquired her first target.


Thomas was in the trench; his left arm was working again and Jalina behind him. He was hearing more than seeing the firefight that was taking place around him. He felt Wash fall in the trench beside him. “Wash?” “Yes, Thomas.” “You still alive? “Believe so, Thomas.” “Good.” A pause. Then, “Thomas.” “Yes, Wash?” “I think we need to get in that ship. It seems to be a safe place.” “I agree.” Another pause, rounds whizzing over their heads. “So, when should we move?” “In a moment. Best not to rush these things.” “No, you’re properly right,” A beat, “But soon I would imagine, yes?” “Oh yes. Definitely before we get shot. I don’t want to die lying down, it just looks shabby.” They lay there. Waiting, hopefully, till the gun fire died down a bit before trying to make a run for it. One of the rescuers, an ugly fella, firing a shiny looking rifle, ran to their position and crouched beside them. He did not stopping firing, as he shouted to them, “You idiots may want to shift your asses before they get blown off!” Wash shouted back, “Yes we were just planning it!” “Yeah well now might be ‘bout you put that plan into action!” He turned to look down at them, did a double take at Wash and got shot through the right leg. He cried out in pain and fell over. Thomas got up, pulled one of the many pistols, this guy seemed to have strapped to him, out of its holster and flicked the safety off. He grabbed the ugly fella’s collar with his left hand and shouted to Wash and Jalina, “Now, it’s time to go!” He started running towards the ship, hearing the ugly fella firing behind him with his shiny rifle. Āi yā! This buwch was heavy.


Zoe looked in front of her. There was a large group of prisoners ahead of her trapped in a building in front of the guards. They couldn’t move for fear of being caught in the crossfire. She looked for inspiration. There must be some way to get them out under cover. Then it all went wrong. She saw Ursula’s ship flying in on the camp. Saw the missile being fired at the front of the main building. Felt the dirt of the ground as she flung herself down and the blast as explosion created a crater out of the front of the main building and the building where the prisoners had been hiding.


“NO!” River cried out as she saw the explosion and felt the deaths of prisoners. She wanted to run. To escape the darkness she felt enveloping her. But no, Serenity told her. We must wait for Daddy and the others.


There was a silence, as the rubble settled from the missile attack. “Zhòu mà nà tiáo mǔ gǒu yù!” Mal shouted. He would get her later. She had deliberately targeted the main building near those prisoners. He looked around. Only Zoe, forward of him, was moving. To his left, a woman who had been running to the ship was flat on the ground, a large piece of rubble embedded in her head. He looked away and ran to Zoe. He helped her up and said, “Come on. Time to go. No-one left to rescue.” They ran back and he hit the button to close the cargo bay door. He felt the ship rise off the ground, knowing that River wanted to get away from the death too. He looked around the cargo bay. There were maybe a dozen prisoners here. Most were on the floor along with Jayne. He turned to look as he heard some one get off the ground. “Āi yā!” It was......


“Wash!” Zoe shouted and ran as she saw her husband standing up. He turned to look as she grabbed and hugged him. “Oh, OK. Didn’t think anybody would want to rescue me this badly.” He gave a nervous laugh. Zoe pulled away a confused and hurt look on her face. “What? Wash. it’s me baby. Your wife.” “I have a wife?” He said. Zoe couldn’t believe his reaction. His words had cut deep and the emotions of the last few months since she had first tried to put to rest the memory of her husband, burst forth in tears. She ran out of the cargo bay.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Ni shi cuo – You are wrong. Zhou – porridge Bù yào jǐn – Never mind Lao-tyen, boo! – Oh, god, no! Gos-se - Crap guan bi dao xiang – shut the hell up Shén qǐng zuò wǒ yī kuài shí tou – Please god make me a stone kao – f**k dans le monde – in the world (in french) Merde – Shit (in french) Yē sū! – Jesus! Āi yā! – My God! buwch – cow (in welsh) Zhòu mà nà tiáo mǔ gǒu yù! – Damn that bitch to hell!



Tuesday, April 25, 2006 2:30 PM


Some good old Firfly action for you good readers of the story!

Really enjoyed writing this chapter!

I greatly liked hearing all your positive comments. It powers my ego along nicely.

Tell me of any spelling or grammer errors, as well as what you like (and more importantly didn't like).

Tuesday, April 25, 2006 6:19 PM


Didn't really see any glaring errors, Wish...Wash and this story was all kinds of cool.

Really like the banter between Wash and Thomas while they were in the ditch waiting to run. The dialogue was spot on and I can just imagine Wash having this kind of conversation with someone (though I would have hoped with another BDH).

And the final lines....that's just gotta hurt. Zoe prolly thinks Wash has decided to forget here intentionally or something, rather than due to a head injury.


P.S. I am glad that your managed to have the BDHs rescue Wash & co before Wash ended up as some biomechanical construct.


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