Everybody begins final preparations for the big confrontation. Mal checks in with Wash and Kaylee, walking around outside, to see if Wash is prepared to create some sort of distraction with Serenity He is. Kaylee makes some comment about Mal acting "funny" at breakfast. Funny "ha ha" or funny "woo-hoooooo"?
Inside the house, the whores all load their guns. Mal reminds them all to aim for the men, not the horses, because spooked horses will help keep the bandits distracted more than dead ones. Then they're all distracted by the sound of Jayne and his new best friend getting naughty audibly over the communicator. Mal puts an end to it, the killjoy. We see Jayne briefly playing with the woman's foot before he starts getting his guns ready. He's clearly in an upper story room in order to take on a sniper role.
Elsewhere, Petaline is still screaming as little Rance Jr. continues to force his way out. Inara is back comforting her. Nandi comes in and asks how things are going. Simon says it won't be long. As Rance's blood, it has a great sense of drama, and will most certainly be born in the middle of a gun battle. Nandi and Inara give each other looks, and Nandi seems to recognize Inara's situation. She puts a hand on Inara's shoulder and apologizes. She starts to explain that she didn't realize that Inara had feelings for Mal, but Inara cuts her off, because nobody is actually allowed to say that for another season or so, and insists she's fine.
And here come the thundering hordes of Dittoheads. Armed men on horseback pound across the desert. It looks as though a stationary gun has been installed on the hovercraft as well.
Back inside the house, Nandi heads over to Mal, who tells her he'd like her on the balcony, where they can get good shots at the intruders. Nandi confronts him over Inara, saying she didn't realize Inara had feelings for him as well. Mal lies that he doesn't understand what Nandi's talking about. Fortunately for the UST, the forward motion of this unending subplot is halted when Jayne comms him to warn of some "imminent violence" on the way.
We get another shot of the men thundering toward Heart of Gold, as Zoe and Jayne fill Mal in on the details of the number of men and weapons. Mal realizes they've lost the element of surprise, somehow, but he and Nandi are committed to seeing it through. Nandi tells the others that if somebody gets shot, pull him or her back away from the line, but then go back to the front to shoot back. She gives Mal an I Know I'm Going To Die In Order To Serve The UST, But That's Okay look.