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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
Post-BDM. Mal and Inara take a back seat for a while as we learn who might have sent out the message naming Serenity and her crew as responsible for the Miranda wave. (Yes, that was a while back...!)
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1243 RATING: 10 SERIES: FIREFLY
I have half-joked to Bytemite that I should name her as co-author of this series from now on, so thoroughly have I picked her brains for Firefly expertise. Thanks Bytemite.
Colonel Tug had always considered Operatives to be a group formed of psychopathic loners with religious leanings; the kind of men you might see hanging around outside a church who could as easily rob the congregation as join it. And nothing about the Operative he had had to work with during the mission to retrieve the Tam girl had made him re-consider his views.
He knew enough about how they were recruited and trained; had heard it himself at an invited-audience-only evening lecture at the very well-appointed offices of Parliamentary Member John Witt. A man who traded endlessly on his War Hero status; who had got himself elected to Parliament on that ticket.
Tug hadn’t been convinced of Witt’s heroic credentials even before he attended the lecture, and had consciously positioned himself at a remove from the podium, leaning against the wall with his arms folded. Then, as he had listened to Witt outlining his programme, it had disgusted him, to think that somewhere someone thought he would be interested in becoming involved. And it wasn’t the content: anybody with any military sense at all knew that the war wasn’t properly won, that key Independent vessels had escaped, that the border and Rim worlds continued to harbor and nurture every kind of lawlessness, including the sort that could end up armed and directed against the Alliance. It wasn’t even Witt’s solution: a network of secret, elite, paramilitary enforcers to act in parallel with conventional forces. It was the feeling of the thing: the symbols on the literature, on the banners on the walls, on the two flags at either side of the podium, in the corners of the slide show images. And, more than anywhere, on the faces of the men filling the front row. Like it was tattooed on their foreheads.
He had considered the symbol itself while Witt had murmured and gesticulated, tilted his head, trying to make out what it was. A trident with ripples of water? A brazier with flames licking out of it? A – plug, with electricity coming off it? It had been easy enough, however, to read the faces of the already-converted.
Colonel Tug knew those men. The able-bodied but deeply disabled casualties of war. He’d seen them arriving home after the final surrender on Hera. Not home home, but to the Transition Centers set up to deal with the aftermath of the hard, dug-in campaign that nobody had expected. The centers had been lauded in the media and Tug himself had thought they were a good thing. He’d given money, which must have been recorded somewhere and was probably what had got him the invite to the lecture. He’d believed that the soldiers who were sent to Transition were being rehabilitated, prepared for a return to civilian life. And maybe in some cases that had been true. But not for the men sitting in Witt’s front row. These were his followers: at best, his personal cult; at worst, his private army.
When he had realized that, realized the danger, he had quietly taken a seat, put his hands in his lap, replaced an expression that may have been skeptical with one more neutral. And he’d kept out of the way of it ever since – Witt, Transition and the Operatives. Even when he’d heard a whisper of a rumor, about the men who didn’t make the grade, who got sent out into the Black to hunt and retrieve Reavers for vivisection and experimentation…He was a soldier. He didn’t need to know about any of that.
That was the line that Tug had taken during the mission. Who the Tam girl was, what she’d done: those questions came to him, but he did nothing to seek answers. He was the liaison between the Operative and the military and his orders were clear: to do whatever the Operative wanted him and his men to do.
And he’d done it. Ordered his men to massacre defenceless civilians down to the last man, woman and child. Ordered them to follow that godforsaken ship further and further out towards the Rim. Ordered them to hold against the Reaver attacks, even as he heard the sound – a sound he’d never imagined he’d hear, which he still heard, waking and asleep – of them being raped, ripped and gnawed over the comms.
And ordered them to stand down. To stand down when the Operative told them to.
To stand down. And then to help them, the Tam girl and the other criminals, to help them back on to their feet, and send them off, back into the Black.
To stand down and let them go.
And all because the psychopath had lost faith in his religion, in his cult. Because he didn’t want to be a soldier in Witt’s private army any more. Because – and he’d told Tug this himself – he thought that his mission was wrong.
It was clear to Tug, and the close circle of subordinate officers surrounding him, that though the Operative had abdicated his command the mission itself had not been abandoned. And, for the first couple weeks, they had sought confirmation of that from their superiors back in the Core. They’d waited a week, another week, and another week after that. They’d used every channel to get their message through. And all the time, they remembered those civilians, and the man on the satellite-moon, run through with that ridiculous sword just for having knowledge of the mission. Remembered, wondered, if they were going to be next. For actually having been there, for knowing that the wave sent out by the Firefly was probably true.
But more weeks passed, and no new Operative came. No message came. And they understood that they’d been cut loose. That they were on their own.
But, the fact that no new orders had come: that could be taken both ways. Until they received confirmation of the order to stand down, the mission was still on. And after that, being all over the Firefly as they were, it was nothing to fit a tracking device. So that, no matter how long it took to heal the unspeakable Reaver-wounds of his men and the havoc wreaked on their ships, they’d be able to find the Firefly and finish what they’d started.
Tuesday, November 03, 2009 12:37 PM
Tuesday, November 03, 2009 1:56 PM
Tuesday, November 03, 2009 3:58 PM
Tuesday, November 03, 2009 5:24 PM
Wednesday, November 04, 2009 5:47 AM
Wednesday, November 04, 2009 7:24 AM
Wednesday, November 04, 2009 8:13 AM
Wednesday, November 04, 2009 10:52 AM
Thursday, November 05, 2009 12:50 AM
Thursday, November 05, 2009 2:32 AM
Friday, November 06, 2009 7:19 AM
Friday, November 06, 2009 1:29 PM
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