…realizing that Cash and his gang can most likely see the huge column of black smoke from the destruction of the Skiff, the crew bring the ships back to town, and start preparing an ambush.
Willem fils a wagon with barrels of homemade hooch (AKA Boom Juice, all nice and ‘splodey), and starts loading the wagon with rocks (shrapnel). Keeping an eye on any townspeople who show interest…since the fact that Cash sent men to the ship means that he was alerted by someone in town.
Other members of the crew take up look-out positions on rooftops.
The Bartender from the saloon comes over to Willem as he’s loading rocks, and makes a comment about the fact that when the wagon blows, every window in town will be busted. As the Bartender continues the small talk, Willem suddenly notices, out of the corner of his eye, the Bartender’s hand slipping behind his back, and moving as if he’s drawing something out from his waistband. Without a second thought, Willem draws his gun and puts a hole through the Bartender, killing him. Sure enough, a gun slips from the man’s dead fingers.
“I always thought he was way too gorram happy for the amount of money I was paying him,” says Jonas.
They search the body and find a communicator. Renner and Willem use the communicator to taunt Cash. (Well, initially, it looked as though Renner was going to try to pose as the Bartender to dupe Cash into giving away info, but Willem talked at the same time….so the taunting commenced. Again, Things Never Do Run Smooth.)
Kai takes the Bartender’s gun, so that she has something to defend herself with. Gideon shows her how to use it. Then, Kai and Leda go through the town and advice the townspeople to take cover in their root cellars until the trouble passes.
Gideon spots a small dust cloud approaching the town, but can’t see any vehicle. Using the scope on her sniper rifle, she zooms in and sees that the disturbance is being caused by the hover jets of two small Seekers – remote-controlled missles, which can be programmed for specific targets….which are now heading towards town, from the direction of the gang’s ranch. She alerts the others.
Jules decides to leave the roof and try to use the scanners on Icarus to interfere with the signals controlling the Seekers. She runs down the street towards the ship.
Gideon and Willem, using sniper rifles, try to destroy the approaching Seekers, which are only moving as fast as a galloping horse. Willem hits one of them, which detonates in a massive explosion, outside of town. These Seekers appear to be carrying heavier payloads than normal.
Gideon, unfortunately, misses hers….which enters into the town, just as Jules hits the street. Jules picks up her pace, running flat-out for Icarus, as the Seeker barrels down the street towards her and the ship. As Jules leaps inside the open cargo doors and scrambles to close them, Gideon takes another shot at the Seeker, and hits it….blowing a 10-foot wide, 2-foot deep crater in the main street.
A short time later, the crew spots an approaching vehicle: An extended Mule, with a long flat-bed on the back — carrying ten men. It looks as though Cash has come to make sure that his Seekers did the job.
Renner takes to the air in his ship. Gideon and Willem draw a bead on the gang with their sniper rifles, and are rewarded by seeing the reaction to the appearance of Renner’s ship — the gang was obviously expecting that the Seekers had destroyed the vessels. Gideon kills the driver, but the passenger calmly kicks the body out of the vehicle, takes over control of the Mule, and barks orders at his men. This must be Cash.
One of the gang members on the flat-bed launches another Seeker, towards Renner’s ship. Renner goes into evasive manuevers.
Willem shoots at Cash, hitting him in the chest, to no discernable effect — the man is wearing battle armor. Gideon takes a shot at his head, and wounds him.
At this point, Renner loops back around and dives at the Mule, firing his weapons….the Seeker right behind him. The men on the Mule see the situation they’re in, and start to jump from the vehicle. Some of them are hit by the cannon fire from the swooping ship…and the rest are still on the Mule when Renner cuts his engines, the Seeker switches targets to the next active generator, and slams into the Mule, blowing it sky-high.
Renner re-ignites his engines (right before he crashes into the rooftop where Willem is perched). The crew opens fire on the survivers of the Mule explosion, and a firefight ensues, with the survivors firing from the cover provided by the wreckage. Kai shoots a man, killing him. “So much for “First: Do No Harm,””, says Jules. The Doctor drops the gun and doesn’t participate further. Aida kills another gang member, emptying a clip into him.
Suddenly two grenades fly up out of the wreckage. One falls short, but the other lands on the roof where Jules and Gideon are positioned. The two women leap from the roof as the grenade detonates, and Jules injures herself slightly on the landing.
Renner puts his ship in hover, aiming his still-smoking cannons at the wreckage. “Give it up. Come on out,” he says over the external comm. One survivor, covered in gore, raises his hands and walks from the cover. Willem notes that this doesn’t appear to be Cash, so they search the bodies in the wreckage. No sign of Cash. However, they do notice that one of the bodies appears to have been killed by a knife to the throat.
The lightbulb goes off. Cash had pulled a “Hannibal Lector” to try and escape — covering himself in gore to disguise himself. Willem goes over to the prone gang leader, and shoves his pisol in a very intimate location, but before anything can be done, Jonas comes out from cover and shoots Cash dead with a shotgun. “That was for Amy.”
The Crew heads out to the old Ranch that the gang had been using for their headquarters….which was abandoned, as no gang members were left alive. The only opposition they encounter is an automatic security bot, which Aida has the brilliant idea to access via the security system and shut off, as the rest of the crew fire uselessly at its armored body…..
They do find three women who were being kept in a bunkhouse for the ‘recreational needs’ of the gang….along with the bodies of several others. The women are in medically-induced comas (the gang had them doped with animal tranqualizers, and then revived them with adrenaline when needed), so Kai perfoms a small amount of triage back in the infirmary on Icarus. Leda comments that she wishes they could raise some of the gang from the dead, and kill them again. “They’re no better’n Reavers,” agrees Renner.
The crew return the women to their families, and help the town re-build (including giving the town the anti-aircraft gun the gang had set up at the ranch). They get a set of false IDs from Jonas, and some much-needed fuel, and leave Deadwood, having done a good deed.
Out in the Black, Hera awaits…..and on Hera: Serenity Valley.