Into the Blue -- Chapter 13
Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The new deputies try to arrest Maxwell. As usual things go pear shaped.


Into the Blue Chapter 13

Disclaimer: Joss, Fox, Universal Own em’. I’m just playing. No money being made.

This fic takes place just over two years after Serenity (BDM) and has the established couples of Simon/Kaylee, Mal/Inara, Zoë/OC and Jayne/River.


Into the Blue

Chapter Thirteen – Reunion

“Zoë, you got any family?” Allan asked as he and his fiancé sat, snuggled together next to the bonfire blazing in the Cobb's back yard.

“Got plenty right here,” she replied sleepily as she leaned back into Allan's chest.

Allan smiled and breathed deep, the scent of Zoë's hair, “I mean brothers or sisters anywhere, your folks?” he asked.

Zoë closed her eyes and tried not to shudder, remembering. Allan felt her tense up.

“Sorry baby, if it brings up bad memories...” Allan trailed off

“Not that, just... just been a while since I thought about my folks, or my sister.”

“Oh,” was all Allan could say.

Taking a deep breath, Zoë continued, “My folks died when I was nineteen. Ship they crewed on crashed. Only two survivors, the Captain and my little sister.”

“I'm sorry...”

“I was already in the army. Ya' know I actually started off as a purplebelly.”

Allan's eyes widened, “You were an Alliance soldier?”

“Yep, for two and a half years. I loved being a soldier, but I hated what I had to do as one. Soon as the war started, I deserted and switched sides, Independents didn't trust me at first... Except for Jacob Buford. Accepted me right into his unit on the first day when no one else wanted to.”

“I knew he was a good man,” Allan replied.

“He is,” she replied, “Once I made corporal, I got transferred to Mal's unit and the rest they say, is history.”

Allan gave Zoë a squeeze and kissed the top of her head. “What happened to your sister?”

“I don't know. She was little when I left. Nine or ten I think, Make her maybe twenty five, twenty six now? I'm not real sure. I haven't seen my sister since the service for my folks. Alliance wouldn't let me take care of her. Sent her to an orphanage. I ain't heard from her since. Not even sure she's alive... or if she is, if she knows I'm alive.”

“Ever try to look for her?”

“I did after the war, before Mal bought Serenity. Couldn't find her though.”

“What's her name?” Allan asked.



Dawn broke early on Deadwood. After a quick breakfast, Mal, Zoë, River, Jayne, Vera and Allan made their way to the Sheriff's office. Arriving, they were quickly ushered inside.

“Thanks fer comin folks,” Sheriff Mike Clancy said, “I appreciate the help.”

“Don't think on it Sheriff,” Mal replied, “I got a real distaste fer folks that take advantage o' others.”

“I reckon you do since you're still wearin your coat.”

“It's a good coat,” Mal replied.

“I know, got one in the closet at home m'self.”

Mal smiled at the Sheriff, “Good to know I'm gonna be working for a fellow Browncoat.”

“Damn straight,” the Sheriff replied, “Now then back to business.”

Reaching into his desk, he pulled out six badges and tossed them on the blotter, “Put em on,” the Sheriff said.

After pinning the star on his chest, Jayne looked at his mother and grinned, “Never thought you'd see this day huh Ma'?”

“Had crossed my mind boy,” she agreed.

“Now then,” Mike said, “I gotta swear y'all in.”

Mal grimaced, not really wanting to swear on the bible or even worse to the Alliance. The Sheriff made it easy.

“Raise yer right hands and repeat after me,” The Sheriff began.

As soon as everyone had their hands up he continued, “I'm a deputy,” Mike finished with a grin.

“I'm a deputy,” the group chorused.

“Good, now here's the plan,” Mike said, the grin still on his face.


A little after ten, the Sheriff, his regular deputy and the Serenity crew set off for Maxwell's ranch about six miles outside of town. Splitting up into their usual teams, Mal, Zoë and Jayne would accompany the Sheriff his regular deputy and Vera to the ranch house in two ground cars while River and Allan would approach from the rear by horseback. All were heavily armed as Mike expected trouble.

Mal and Vera had their sidearms and carried shotguns. Jayne as usual had his Callahan and pistol while Zoë was carrying the M-4 carbine she had used the day before along with her usual mare's leg and pistol.

Sheriff Clancy and his deputy, Josh Ring had sidearms and rifles. Allan carried the other M-4 carbine along with his pistol. River was armed with her suppressed sniper rifle, a pistol and had her katana slung across her back.

Arriving ahead of the others, Allan and River crept up the back of the hill behind the ranch house. Their horses tied to a tree in the gully. Reaching a position where they could observe the complex Allan called on the com's.

“Mal, you copy?”

“Comin in clear Allan,” Mal replied.

Assured the com's were working this time, River found a good perch behind a bush while Allan used his binoculars to scan the buildings.

The complex consisted of a large adobe ranch house in the southwestern style. A large horse barn behind the house with a much larger cattle barn behind that. A bunkhouse was located to one side of the horse barn.

Allan could see seven or eight men moving about the complex. Allan looked to his diminutive partner.

“Feel anything Kiddo?”

“They are not alerted to our presence, but I sense fear from several minds but I cannot tell from where.”

“Didn't the Sheriff say something about this asshole using slaves?”

River nodded, “Women primarily,” she agreed with a disgusted look on her face.

“Sounds like rape to me,” Allan growled.

“It is.”


“Nara, you copy?” Mal called over the com.

“Right here Mal.”

“We're about ready to pull into the drive, get ready to lift off in the shuttle if we yell.”


Inara and Simon were standing by in shuttle two in the event someone was hurt or the team had to be pulled out quickly. Jayne's sister Fred was also on board in case they needed another gun hand. Even though the tall brunette was a beautiful as a companion she could shoot like her big brother Jayne.

“Here we go,” Mike said as he pulled his official ground car into the long driveway leading to the house.

As the two vehicles approached the front of the house, a heavy set, tall man with gray hair stepped on to the porch.

As soon as the two cars stopped, the Sheriff, Josh, Vera and Mal stepped from the first vehicle while Jayne and Zoë exited the second.

Israel Maxwell stepped down to meet his guests, “Mike, nice to see you today,” he said a big smile on his face.

“Not here on a social call Israel,” the Sheriff replied, “I have a warrant for your arrest and to search the premises.”

The rancher lost his smile, “A warrant huh, who issued it?”

“Judge Roberts in New Redmond.”

“He ain't got jurisdiction round here,” Maxwell snarled. Several of his men had stepped onto the porch behind their boss while several other hands approached from the sides.

“He does now since I arrested Judge Hanks last night for accepting bribes.”

“Well that does put a different spin on things,” Maxwell replied.

Suddenly three of the armed hands drew their guns. The first to clear his holster didn't even get a chance to shoot as his head exploded in a cloud of red. No one heard the shot.

For a moment, none of the hands moved, frozen in shock, giving the erstwhile deputies time to aim their own weapons.

“Now that ain't neighborly,” Mal drawled, “Now all o' you drop yer guns and no one else gets dead.”

The yard exploded into chaos...


“Shit!” Allan swore as he shouldered his carbine. Beside him River began servicing targets with her rifle like she had with the first of the men who pulled a gun.

Sighting carefully, Allan squeezed off a round at a man drawing a bead on Zoë from behind. The range was long for the weapon he was using but he'd make due. Allan was satisfied with the torso shot he scored on the gunman. Quickly Allan flipped the selector switch to burst mode and began laying down covering fire while the Sheriff and his deputies dove for cover.

River had killed five men in short order, mostly head shots, her suppressed rifle making chugging noises as it fired.

Zoë and Jayne began to return fire at the men approaching from the flanks while Vera and Mal dealt with the close in threats, Josh Ring had been hit in the initial flurry of bullets, Mike pulled him clear where Vera began tending his wound under the cover of the ground car.

Maxwell had retreated into the house as the shooting started. Mal started after him but was hit in the leg by a stray bullet and fell to the ground.

“Nara! Get in the air NOW!” Mal yelled over the com.

Allan nodded to River and they stood and began running down the hill. River abandoning the sniper rifle and pulling her pistol as she ran. Allan beside her, his carbine up and ready.

Mike dragged Mal behind cover while Zoë moved to cover them.

“Zoë, River an me are heading for the rear of the house!” Allan called over the com.

“Got ya baby.”

As they approached the bunkhouse, two men ran out in front of Allan and River with their guns out, River shot one while Allan got the second. Upon reaching the rear of the ranch house, they took flanking positions beside the back door.

River signaled to Allan that someone was coming. The back door flew open and Maxwell darted through, only to fall onto his face after Allan tripped him. Before the rancher could even try to stand up, River put her foot in the middle of the mans back and shoved him back into the dirt, holding her Katana to his throat.

“Naughty, naughty bad man,” she sing-songed, “Not time to leave the party yet.”

Moment's later, Zoë came through the door, the Sheriff right behind her.

“Israel Maxwell, you are hereby bound by law for conspiracy, grand theft, attempted murder, murder, attempted hijacking, bribing of public officials and slave trafficking,” Mike snarled as he placed handcuffs on the rancher.

Allan helped the Sheriff pull the now sullen man to his feet while Zoë held him at gunpoint. Off in the distance a shuttle could be heard approaching.


Jayne carried the wounded Josh into the shuttle while Vera and Fred assisted Mal inside. Inara began fretting over him immediately while Simon began treating the more injured deputy.

“I swear Mal, you can't go anywhere without getting hurt,” Inara fumed as she wrapped a bandage around the bleeding wound.

“Not my fault Boa-bei, was a stray shot. Not like it hit anythin vital”

“Malcolm Reynolds, what am I ever going to do with you?”

“Kiss me?”

“Not today, and you're sleeping in your own bunk tonight.”

“Ow Nara, that really hurts.”


Allan and River made their way through the house checking every room. The Sheriff had told them that he had information that Maxwell had received a shipment of slaves a few days previous. There were rumors that he was a sadist who enjoyed raping and beating the young women he bought at the slave markets. Then when he was finished with women he would hand them over to be used by the ranch hands. Sometimes they were resold and sometimes they were killed.

Quietly the pair made their way into the basement after checking the upper two floors as well as the attic. Upon reaching the bottom of the stairs, River began to look around.

“Can you feel them River?”Allan asked.

“Nothing specific, emotions are too wound up with the others,”

Looking around the almost empty basement, a strange look came over her face.

“Does this space seem a bit small to you Allan?”

Actually it does,” Allan replied, his engineer's mind calculating the dimensions of the room.

Pacing off the distance along the long axis of the basement, Allan looked at his partner, “The house is about seventy feet long right?”

“Seventy two point five to be exact.”

“Then why is this space about sixty feet?”

River looked around again, “There are windows on three sides, but not the fourth.”

“My thoughts exactly.”

Allan strode over to the blank concrete wall, examining it closely. Dropping to his hands and knees he examined the junction of the floor and wall.

“There's about a two millimeter gap here at the bottom.”

“There is a similar gap here in the expansion joint,” River replied.

“Gotta be this wall,” Allan said, “A hidden room.”

“I concur.”

looking at the wall Allan spotted a small hole about waist high. The hole was very small, perhaps a quarter of an inch wide. Allan continued to look around.

“Allan,” River called from a few feet away, “Look at this.”

River was holding a piece of steel rod about a quarter inch in diameter and a foot long, a hook fashioned at one end. Taking it from River's hands, Allan began to insert it in the hole. as it met resistance he paused.

“You ready?”

“I am,” River replied as she aimed her pistol at the door.

“Here goes...” Allan said as he pushed the rod further in. A click was heard and the wall began to swing open.

Weapons at the ready, River and Allan stepped through the opening only to be stopped in their tracks by a woman's scream.

“Son of a bitch,” Allan muttered at the sight before him.

Huddled in the corner of the small room were three young women. All we naked and obviously had been beaten. A chain was cuffed to each girls leg. The other end of each chain anchored to the wall.

“No get away!” cried the oldest of the group. A dark skinned girl with long hair. The other two girls, a blond and a brunette didn't look to be more than seventeen or eighteen.

River stepped in front of Allan and holstered her gun. Trying her best to appear non threatening, River stepped forward.

“Shhh, it's all right, we're here to help you,” River said as she indicated the deputies badge on her shirt, “My name is River and I'm a deputy Sheriff.”

Knowing that a man wouldn't be welcome near them for a moment, Allan keyed his com.

“Zoë, you copy?”

“Go ahead baby.”

“Got three beaten and naked girls in the basement, need you and Vera down here.”

“On our way.”


Zoë and Vera ran down the stairs and sprinted to Allan's side. Allan was outside the room while River tried to calm the girls. The two teenagers were hysterical and the older girl was sobbing.

“Probably need a woman's touch right now,” Allan said, “I know Simon's busy so can you check them for any injuries,?”

Zoë nodded and stepped into the room, Vera behind her.

“Merciful God,” cried Vera.

“Whoa-de-ma,” muttered Zoë.

Moving quickly, the two women began to comfort the two teenager girls, while River began speaking quietly with the dark skinned girl.

Suddenly a single shot was heard upstairs, Allan looked at Zoë quickly and she nodded, Allan ran up the stairs and through the house to fine Mike Clancy holding his gun in one hand and trying to stem the flow of blood from his nose with the other. Israel Maxwell lie dead a few feet away.

“You okay Sheriff?”

“Yeah,” he replied, “Son of a bitch head butted me and tried to run. Ain't gonna run no more though.”

“I can see that,” Allan replied, “Good riddance.”

“Just what I was thinkin.”

Jayne ran up to the two men, “Nara's gonna head back to the ship, Simon needs ta' operate on Josh.”

The three of them shielded their eyes from the dust blown up as Inara lifted the shuttle into the air and flew back towards town.

“Jayne, can you go back over the hill and fetch the horses and River's rifle?” Allan asked.

“Sure thing,” The big man replied, “How's the girls?”

“Hurt and scared outta their minds.”

“I imagine. Glad ya shot him Mike, I'd like to be cuttin on him iffin ya'd left im' alone with me.”

“I know Jayne, “I'd a helped I think.”

“Allan, baby?” Zoë's voice came across the com.

“Go ahead.”

“Everything okay?

“Maxwell tried to run, Mike put him down.”

“Glad ta' hear it.”

“I'm gonna see if I can find something the girls can wear in the house.”

“Good idea dear,” Zoë replied.


Allan made his way through the house and entered the master bedroom, rooting through the closet, he found two bathrobes and a long coat. Folding them over his arm he made his way to the basement.

At the bottom of the stairs he was met by Vera, “Got somethin Allan?”

“Two robes and a coat, best I could do.”

“That'll work,” she agreed.

During the time Allan was upstairs, Zoë had found the keys to unlock the shackles. River and Zoë handed the girls the robes and coat. Carefully, Zoë led out the brunette while River escorted the dark skinned girl. Vera helped the blonde.

“What's your name?” River asked the young woman.

“Alisha... Alisha Allene.”

Allan heard Zoë suck in a breath. Turning, she looked at the young woman leaning on River. River had a sad smile on her face.

Swallowing a lump in her throat, Zoë spoke to the young woman, “Were... were your parents Michael and Regina Allene?”

She nodded.

Zoë's eyes began to tear, “Sissy?” she asked tentatively.

Tears ran down the girls face, “Zoë? Big sis is that you?” she asked, a hopeful tone in her quavering voice.

River stepped to the side and took the arm of the brunette as Zoë grabbed the younger woman in a hug, they both fell to their knees crying.

“It's me Sissy, it's me.” Zoë said as tears ran down her face.

“Zoë?” Allan asked.

“Allan, this is my sister Alisha.”



Wednesday, July 30, 2008 9:11 PM


Wow, what are the odds?

Thursday, July 31, 2008 2:07 AM


I'm sure River could calculate them in her head....

Actually this was a plot bunny that hit me in the head yesterday and I had to run with it.


Thursday, July 31, 2008 7:05 AM


Zoe's sister! But how's she going to cope with what Maxwell did to her and the other girls? And some good action, too. Can't Mal go just a couple of jobs without getting shot? And he's sleeping in the bunk tonight, too ...

Friday, August 1, 2008 12:53 PM


I like the accumulation of family, here--how will Zoe do with her sister's sense of abandonment?

And Briglad, where're you from--something I ran across suggested US Northeast? My husband persists in believing I'm alone in my obsession around here.

Friday, August 1, 2008 1:23 PM


"And Briglad, where're you from--something I ran across suggested US Northeast? My husband persists in believing I'm alone in my obsession around here."

Not by a long shot... Steamer on here lives in NH (Haven't met face to face yet) and I'm a born and bread Vermonter. Not many VT based Browncoats but the NE Browcoats are pretty active. I'm pretty new to the group myself.



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