Serenity returns to Persephone in search of work. Simon tries to help River through one of her bouts of erratic behavior. Inara agrees to accompany Atherton Wing, a young noble, to a ball, while Badger approaches Mal with an offer. Sir Warwick Harrow wants some cargo shipped to his holdings offworld on Jiangyin, despite Alliance regulations to the contrary. Badger needs someone of a certain bearing to make contact with the noble – at the very same ball where Wing is asking Inara to remain with him permanently. Mal brings a very excited Kaylee to the party, but his negotiations are interrupted by an argument with Wing. When Wing insults Inara, Mal punches him and thus inadvertently challenges him to a duel with swords. The highly skilled fencer accepts, and Badger sends his men to Serenity to ensure that none of Mal’s crew interfere and somehow damage Badger’s reputation. With only an evening of lessons under his belt, no one gives Mal much of a chance. But Mal isn’t going to go down without a fight – and he doesn’t necessarily promise it’s going to be a fair one.
Guest Cast: Mark A. Sheppard (Badger); Edward Atterton (Atherton Wing); Larry Drake (Sir Warwick Harrow)
Notes: Mal’s prior dealings with Badger, referenced in this episode, took place in the episode Serenity. A new introduction narrated by Mal appears at the beginning of this episode.
LogBook entry by Dave Thomer