My first fanfic... ever!
Sunday, September 16, 2007

I’ve been an avid fic-reader for years, but I’ve never had any plot-bunnies hound me enough to actually write something. Until now. I read a story that just wouldn’t leave my mind, and knowing it would never be written, I decided to give it a shot myself. I'm a bit new to the posting process, so Wytchcroft suggested I post first to my blog.
AND IT DESPERATELY NEEDS A TITLE! Suggestions welcome! I think the essence of the story is in exploring "broken family" dynamics, and the double-edged sword of Mal/Saff's relationship made incarnate.


This story is inspired by the first ficlet of “Careless” by Dirty Diana (please read it first!):

I was really intrigued by her portrayal of a Mal/Saffron pairing, but somehow I couldn’t see Saffron – who couldn’t even stay with a loving, wealthy man - saddling herself with a dependent. It seemed more plausible that Saffron would simply clean out the safe and split, leaving her son behind. I tried to emulate the original story's flow, and the writing may be a bit derivative, so if you have any ConCrit (structure, dialogue, Chinese, etc.) before I post this to the boards I would love to hear it!

“Every person has the power to make others happy. Some do it simply by entering a room – others by leaving the room.” William Arthur Ward.

Throwing his worn trenchcoat over a chair, Mal notices his small son pensively fiddling with his toys at the simple kitchen table. Sighing, he unbuckles his holster, letting it join the tattered relic from his past.

He’d given up Serenity to settle them on this backwater planet so’s the boy could have something semblin’ a “normal” life – friends his own age and whatnot, as Kaylee insisted he needed – and yet here he was, playing by himself again with those little plastic critters Wash kept sending him.

“What’s up, er zi? Ain’t no livin’ persons to play with?”

The boy glances up shyly before shrugging his narrow shoulders.

Mal clenches his jaw as he roughly pulls out a chair and straddles it, and then patiently waits for his son to speak.

“Why don’t I have a momma?”

Gently, he responds. “You know this, nian qing de.”

“They said.... They said she was a lyin’ whore.”

He stops himself before he starts to wondering how this tiny planet got that kind of info. Wouldn’t be surprised if his brazen bride had shown her pretty face here too at some point.

“Well, they weren’t half wrong. But your momma was also a beautiful, clever, skillful woman.” As well as a thievin’ bu hui-hen de pofu.

“Is that why she left?”

Mal levels his gaze at his son. “She just weren’t cut out for this kinda life. T’aint cause she didn’t love you. Don’t you ever think that for a second. But she knew you belonged with me. ‘Cause you’re the sharpest boy in the whole gorram ‘verse, and you keep up yer learnin’, someday you’ll be the best pilot too.”

His son begins to beam under this praise, and blesses him with the bright flash of a smile, so rare these days.

The boy stares sullenly, regarding his father with an inscrutable look in his dusky blue eyes. Approaching manhood hadn’t yet dulled his fine features. His adolescent ranginess accentuated the cleft chin and wide mouth. Her mouth. An involuntary flashback to that first kiss... and waking up on the floor of his bunk to discover the ship locked on course for a ruttin’ chopshop.

“Ain’t you afraid I’ll turn out bad like her?”

“What? No. No! Don’t you ever let me hear you sayin’ fei hua like that, dong ma? She weren’t bad... just...” Tweaked. Kicked in the brainpan. Completely off her nut, even. “She played by her own set a’ rules. Most folk, they play for the payoff – coin, or revenge. She just liked the game itself, I reckon.”


Mal knows there are things he needs to teach his son. Fly a transport. Shoot straight.
Hold his liquor. That last lesson has been taught for the past three hours with a bottle of Jayne’s finest hooch, in honor of the boy’s 16th birthday. Shaking off the fuzzies himself, he slings the boy’s arm around his broad shoulders and helps him to bed. His son’s starting to fill out his size lately, but he ain’t so big his daddy couldn’t carry him to the ends of the ‘verse if need be.

Before sleep overcomes him, the boy murmurs.
“Why’d you marry her?”

The first time, or the second? Best not tell the boy that fong luh story just yet. Maybe next year. Or never.

He can’t imagine what he was thinking when he – voluntarily – married her. Reaching over, he gently brushes a lock of hair off the young man’s peaceful face. Now, he can’t imagine his life without David. That’s something, he figures.

Er zi = son
Nian qing de = young one
Bu hui-hen de po-fu = remorseless harridan
Fei hua = nonsense
Fong luh = crazy
Dong ma? = Understand?


Sunday, September 16, 2007 5:21 AM


Thanks! Do you have any suggestions on a title? I'm really bad with that, and it's a prereq for posting the the BSR... :/

Sunday, September 16, 2007 4:38 AM


seconded! fine stuff! i loved the bit from "the boy stares.." to "ruttin chop shop".

Tweaked. kicked in the brainpan. CLASS!

get yerself to the BSR pronto and join in the brawl!


Sunday, September 16, 2007 4:21 AM


good stuff, kid. better than a lot of stuff that gets posted. Welcome to the party. Wait ' till inspiration bites again, then write and post that. You'll do fine.


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