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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
Chap 4 of TDTS. The continuing adventures of Shepherd Book and what may have been his real mission on Serenity continues……Who he was, who he was sent to help, and how much the Alliance and the crew of the Firefly transport really knew about the man?……..PS: I humbly request your forgiveness for spelling and grammar over the next few stories. I am off from work for a couple of days and am attempting some creative writing- escapism and I am in a bit of a rush. Apologies…..Z
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 926 RATING: 0 SERIES: FIREFLY
The Dead Tree Scrolls
Shepherd Derrial Book, in his bunk, was recounting his time spent on Serenity. He had been here almost two weeks. Two weeks? It seemed funny to him that one’s moments in space were still measured as such. There were no days in space, so how could there be weeks? And how could he have spent almost two of them on the small transport?
No! Time in the black was a regulated amount of space moments, linked together so that there was a measurement of how long something took an individual to accomplish. A task, a duty, a goal, a mission? And His task, his duty, was to save the universe. Well, not exactly. His duty was in protecting or guiding someone that was going to be savior of the universe, or maybe just humankinds part of it. Book wasn’t even sure of that yet.
Shepherd Book was feeling a sense of pressure placed upon his shoulders that he hadn’t been aware of before. Not even with the pressures of war. He had said as much to the Lady Companion, Inara, in her shuttle within the first couple of days of his arrival….he remembered.
“ Is this how it is, out here?”
“ Sometimes.” she had answered.
“ I…, well I think, think I may be on the wrong ship.” The Shepherd felt venerable. He hated that feeling of not being in control and not knowing what to do.
“ Maybe.” She paused, “But maybe you are exactly where you’re supposed to be.”
Certainly a wise woman. Her words had comforted him. Was she the one the Shepherd was to find and protect? If so, what a fine joke the “Divineness” was capable of playing on his devoted. He guessed the “Supremeness” of all things did have a sense of humor. Still, what would be a more perfect soul to hide in the form of a deliverer? Or was it Mal? Was he here to save the captain? What of Jayne? Only the “Creator” knew of what was to come. All Book needed to do was be ready.
Was it the young Doctor Tam he were to guard? His sister? Surely not, the child was sweet and maybe a genius but hardly capable of leading man or beast. Then there was Kaylee, if ever there were rugged sweetness wrapped into human form if was that girl. And although she were a good mechanic, an excellent mechanic, the preacher had strong doubts if she were to become more than that.
Now Zoe? A warrior woman certainly, and someone Book would surely keep an eye on, yet seemed more devoted to Mal as ranking officer and Captain of the ship then to be in the lead, still maybe?
Ok Wash. Zoe, the first mate was devoted to her husband but the guy just didn’t come across as being savior of the verse. Again, Shepherd would have to corral his doubts and speculations of whom he might be there to guide and deliver. He wasn’t even sure that’s what he was destined to do.
The Preacher still kept in contact with Reverend Dempsey. A good friend always, and his brother had managed to decipher some of the Scroll readings. Still, the going was slow and he had sent the Shepherd a wave saying he wished his friend could be there to help him.
Book’s mission though, was about finding the person that would bring certain things to light. Secrets? The Alliance leadership certainly had it’s share, and although the Shepherd was becoming more disenfranchised with his former command, he still had friends within the military. Good friends, friends that he could still trust and count on if needed.
Book had received a wave from his good friend Rev. Dempsey. It was an encrypted message as usual with a code that had been developed in “ Pope City”. Derived from military lingo and a form of prostitution slang. Funny, holy people had a sense of humor too.
It read that his good brother Dempsey had been able to decipher a portion of the Scroll that seemed to pertain to Book and his mission. The details weren’t clear yet and whenever he had a more defined idea of what it meant he would be sending the Shepherd another wave.
The message did read that the Shepherds intended target, certainly not the word of Book’s choice, maybe it was just meant to confuse any prying intercepts that may stumble upon the code and figure it out. Anyway the message went on to read that the subject in question was certainly able to take care of themselves and could master and control most any situation.
“Well that leaves out Kaylee and River, and maybe Simon too.” The Preacher digested. “ That leaves, Malcolm, Jayne, Zoe, Wash and Inara, or maybe someone that hadn’t come aboard yet. The Preacher hoped like hell that it hadn’t been Dobson that he was supposed to have protected. He certainly had tried to talk to the man privately but was beat on the head and knocked unconscious for his efforts.
Now, be things as they may the man likely was dead, a bullet hole threw the skull. He guessed He, Shepherd Book needed to say a few “Hail Mary’s” for that one. Looking back Dobson was likely not the individual of interest to the mission. Shepherd was therefore still beating his brain as to which person he was there to help.
To cast no suspicion on himself he would have to look for answers without giving much information about himself. This was a difficult task. The crew were already becoming a little suspicious of his abilities and knowledge of things. Still there was nothing that said a Preacher couldn’t be a educated person. Heck, if anything a spiritual person had more time in the pursuits of knowledge than others had, right?
The Shepherd closed his book and headed to the kitchen for something to eat.
In the Galley:
“ Mornin Shepherd!” Jayne spoke as the Preacher entered the galley. A swift, yet forcible pat to the back from the big man had Book nearly spill his herbal tea.
“ Good morning.” The Shepherd returned.
“ Well, that is if it is morning. Who can tell out here in the black?” The big mercenary continued. “Oh, by the way, gonna be pumping some iron later in the holding bay. Care to join me?” Jayne requested.
“ Sounds like an exercise I’m in condition for pursuing.” The Preacher answered with a smile while taking a sip from his cup.
“Yeah, Gotta keep the ’ol pecks in good shape for the women folk. No telling when someone’s next opportunity might arise, right?” Another pat on the back from Jayne left the Preacher’s tea cup near empty.
“ Well, guess so.” The holy man said.
“ Oh, not to mean that that’s what your intent for stayin in shape is Shepherd. I mean holy men don’t…….do they? I mean, an outlet? What do Preachers do to calm their nerve…..endings, anyway? know what I mean?” Jayne was as crude as space is dark.
“ Well there are others ways of channeling ones energies. There are books you know.” The holy man continued.
“ Yeah, got a stack of ’em in my bunk. Oh…… you mean them without pictures…yeah I guess. Don’t look at them much myself though.”
The Shepherd was beginning to change his thinking about Jayne. “Maybe not the person I’m here for.” The Preacher was thinking. “ Course it would be a great disguise, and very cleaver if someone were to pretend to be an over-sexed ox. Quite the rouse. I still better keep an I on the big fellow.” He concluded.
Later the Shepherd received another transmission from Dempsey. It translated:
“ Have deciphered another part of the Scroll that pertains to you. Don’t know if it’s a person or a place. Read as follows; Search and find the waterway. This be your soul’s follow. It is from this, that secrets and true knowledge of evil will be divulged. Not the waterway, but from the knowledge of the waterway. There, in the waves of it’s consciousness lie truths.” It stopped. Then there was a continuing message from Dempsey.
“ What I’m thinking is this waterway is what you’ll be looking for, and from that, whatever it’s meaning you will understand later. Also it says something about a twin or a sibling to the waterway. I’m thinking twin streams or maybe brooks, could even be a river…….”
With this Shepherd Book nearly smacked himself in the head with his glass of herbal tea.
“ River! River Tam…..and Simon. Gorramit!” Book looked to the heavens, if there is a heaven in space, and asked forgiveness from his “Divinity”.
“ Lord, I’m sorry for the use of thy name in……, well you know that I am.”
The Shepherd continued his thoughts about River and Simon Tam.
End Part 4
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