Next Step: Straight To Video
"Drop your weapons!" "Do it now!" "Weapons down!" "Let it down, now!" "I want to see your hands in the air!" "Stand down!" "Do it!" She turns around, her face lit again by that spotlight, by the holy light of her destruction. The Alliance point man -- prudently -- checks in with his senior, the Operative. "Targets are acquired. Do we have a kill order?" Through the blast doors, our crew. "Do we have an order?" Blood drips from her sword, from her axe. From her hands. River and Mal look at each other silently, unendingly. She's been sane since Miranda. That doesn't mean she won't take these bitches out too. The Operative, over the walkie: "Stand down. Stand down. It's finished." They do so. "We're finished." She turns back to Mal. They are as one.
Open on three holographic grave markers: Shepherd Book, of many mysteries, himself offered salvation by a whore, offering salvation to all comers. Mr. Universe, the ear and the mouth of all truth, his dying breath the voice of all truth, all humanity. Hoban Washburn, secret heart and lynchpin, husband, lover, Joss Whedon look-alike. A clown become a lamb. Compass, finder, seeker. River places a rocket on a stone. Zoe approaches in a beautiful white dress. The color of mourning, and of clarity. You can't stop the signal.
We stand at the graves, silent: Jayne, with his cigar, with his tears, whose muscle has finally learned to protect, to shield. Inara, beautiful, unchained, giving peace, giving sanctuary, giving earth's first and final blessing; healer of the soul, and of the body. Kaylee, the heart inside the politics of location, speaker for the ship, for the family, eternally body and eternally soul; eternal beautiful mind; the final reality of womanhood held up against the sun. Simon, the Alliance redeemed. River, the victim bathed in grace and strength, the low brought high, the downtrodden become the all-seeing, at peace. Mal, the prince of pain, of destruction, now the bearer of the truth. Transmitter of the signal. Zoe, reliant, the embodiment of trust, the bearer of loyalty. Soldier of the unit, holding the line. Wife. Lover. Mother. They stand, and they look, and they remember. And their rocket, small and made of paper, in memoriam to those that gave their lives -- not for freedom, not for politics -- but for this: for simple truth.
The moon of Mr. Universe. Zoe repairs part of the ship with a powerful soldering gun. River repairs a complicated mass of wires, communication of voice or electricity. Inara repaints the "Serenity" on ship, consummate artist, consummate bringer of Serenity. Mal and Jayne, together, War and Liberty, remove the gunport from their home. Down below, in the engine room of course, Simon and Kaylee pretend to work as they make out, dropping to the floor, sweaty and oil-smudged, Anglo skin lit as beautifully as anyone could do, browns and oranges. River watches them make love, unnoticed, from the hatch above, and somehow it's funny, not creepy -- she's a fracking psychic. She's gonna know either way. Her investigations continue. Humanity is a whole other ballgame, post-Maidenhead. She's got a lot to catch up on.