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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - DRAMA
Only 6 weeks after Miranda another member of the crew is killed suddenly. Simon/Kaylee. WARNING: Character death.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 2097 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
I never thought I would write something like this, kill off a main character, but the idea barrelled into my brain and wouldn't go away until I wrote it.
I anticipate a lot of unhappy people and, well, I'm sorry. You were warned.
This type of format is a bit different for me as well, but, what can I say, I like to expirament.
Thanks to Tamsibling for the beta!
Title: Never Alone
Synopsis: 6 weeks after the events of Miranda another member of the crew is killed.
Disclaimer: This story is not meant to infringe on the copyright of any person or company related to the trademarked characters and situations depicted in the Serenity movie or Firefly series. I make no money from this. Only done for fun – and a desperate craving to have more stories told about this wonderful ‘verse Joss Whedon created.
– The Present –
They weren’t invincible. None of them. Nothing had driven home that realization quicker than Wash and Book’s deaths. They led dangerous lives. They expected to be shot and wounded, or even killed, during any job.
It’s why Mal had offered to shelter Simon and his sister. The boy was a good doctor and had saved every single one of them more than once. And – though the rough-around-the-edges Captain would never admit it, he admired Simon for what he’d done to protect River
Raw as they still were from the deaths of two of their own, the crew hadn’t been prepared for the death of yet another of their dwindling numbers. The suddenness of the event had shocked those remaining, debilitating them to the point of being unable to continue with their work, their lives.
The family that had been built on Serenity, the affection, or at the very least respect, grown to encompass every single man and woman, had been broken. It had splintered and there was nothing anyone could do to patch it up again.
They were too numb to try.
– The Past –
It had only been six weeks since Miranda. Things had started to return to normal – well, as normal as life was for the crew of Serenity. Though still mourning their fallen comrades, they had settled back into a routine; a routine that necessitated the need for coin. Even though the repairs done to Serenity had been completed free of charge on the Operative’s order, they still needed a job. And like a good Captain, Mal had found them some work.
It wasn’t an easy job, but they never were. Every time they left the ship they risked being shot at, double-crossed, betrayed, wounded or even killed. But Mal needed coin to keep his girl in the air, to keep his crew fed, and if it meant taking a few unsavory jobs to get that done, then he would take them.
But, yet again, the job had gone south, and they were being chased from their drop point after snatching the payment out of their dead contact’s hand. Mal would need River to get Serenity prepped and would need the rest of the crew to prepare for a quick getaway.
As luck would have it, the hand-held comm. unit Mal had brought with them to communicate with the ship had been damaged and they couldn’t speak to the rest of the crew. As bullets sailed by his head, Mal hoped River would be able to feel the approaching danger as they neared their destination.
Kaylee, River, Inara and Simon all bounded into the cargo bay from different directions as they heard the array of gunfire that echoed through the lower level of the ship.
As the mule skidded up the ramp and the occupants dove out of it for cover, one single, solitary shot could be heard above all the rest.
Time slowed as yet another member of the crew was struck, shock spreading across all of their faces when they realized what had happened.
Mal stared helplessly, cursing the array of bullets that kept him pinned behind the mule, that had made him unable to call out a warning in time.
– The Present –
They stood now in a small, well-kept garden surrounded by wild flowers. It was a pretty place. Simple, calm and peaceful and the summer wind blew coolly through the garden to relentlessly kiss the stone marker that served as a reminder of who lay beneath it. The engraved words were simple and each held a different meaning for those who beheld them now.
Some tears fell unhindered down tanned cheeks while others were kept imprisoned within sad eyes, just waiting for permission to be released. They stood in companionable silence all lost in memories of their fallen comrade.
There were no words to be said that hadn’t already been voiced a thousand times over. There was nothing that would comfort them now. The pain ran too deep; deeper still for some more than others. Time healed all wounds and would heal this one as well – eventually.
Trembling fingers traced one word, paused, and then traced it again. And then one sob came, followed by another and another, until the simple garden was filled with them.
“Simon!” Kaylee cried as he dropped like a rag doll at her feet. She was closer and so reached him first, falling to her knees and pulling him into her arms even as her hands slid over his chest to cover the blood pooling beneath them. Tears instantly welled in her eyes as she glanced down at the red stain spreading across his chest and between her fingers.
She cried for help but gunshots echoed around her and no one came, not quick enough anyway.
The shock in Simon’s eyes immediately followed by numbing pain caused him to gasp for air, Kaylee’s name slipping broken from his lips.
“Shh, stay quiet, Simon. Cap’n’ll be right here to patch you up.” Her eyes darted around the cargo bay, but the one word that fell out of his mouth drew her gaze instantly back to his.
Kaylee shook her head, understanding his meaning but unable to accept it. “Stop it, Simon. You’ll be fine. Right and shiny an –“
“Kaylee –“ The pain in his voice caused an involuntary shudder to race down her spine and she stubbornly shook her head in an effort to ignore what she knew he was going to say.
He inhaled deeply, haltingly, his body struggling to take in enough air to say what needed to be said. As soon as he pushed the words out of his mouth, a sob escaped Kaylee’s lips.
“Love you too, Simon.” She bent and pressed her mouth to his cheek, nuzzling it before lifting her head to meet his cloudy eyes. “You know I do.”
Around her, she heard Mal barking orders and soon he was kneeling on one side, Jayne on the other.
“Help me get him up,” Mal said, meeting Jayne’s eyes. “We need to –“
“No,” Simon breathed, his voice firm even though it was barely above a whisper.
Mal set his jaw as he stared at his injured medic. “Now listen here, doc. We need to get you to the infirmary and –“
“No. Mal. Please.” Simon coughed and clutched Kaylee’s hand with as much strength as he could muster. “Listen.”
“Simon, you need –“
Mal snapped his mouth shut and did as he was told. For once in his life, on his own boat, he let his jing chang mei yong de doctor give him an order. He thought back to the day he’d said those words, called the dying young man lying at his feet useless. Guilt welled in his chest as well as regret, knowing they were untrue. Simon had saved them all. More than once.
Mal’s inside’s twisted as he realized he would not be able to return the favor when Simon needed it most.
Simon’s gaze pierced him now, steady and determined. Mal knew that look. He wanted something. And as Mal reached out and touched the younger man’s arm, he knew he would grant him anything that was in his power to give.
Simon’s hands searched for purchase on Kaylee. Anywhere he could touch her. And his eyes darted distractedly upward, blinking rapidly to clear suddenly blurry vision. “Marry us, please,” Simon breathed, his voice hitching in his chest.
Mal hid his surprise when he shifted his eyes to look at an equally shocked Kaylee. “Simon, you need to be –“
Mal opened his mouth to bite out a scathing retort but the look in Simon’s eyes told him it would fall on deaf ears.
Zoe, having returned from the infirmary with a needle prepped, waited for the ok to inject the powerful painkiller. When she noticed Mal’s nod, she knelt and pressed the hypo into Simon’s neck. His eyes fluttered for a moment and his body relaxed into Kaylee’s arms, the medication taking the edge off the pain.
River knelt beside her brother, her eyes calm and her demeanor determined. She pressed one hand against his chest, atop Kaylee’s, the blood warm as it leaked through their joined fingers. With the other, River curled her fingers around his, nodding ever so slightly as she watched his face grow paler with each passing minute. She knew he didn’t see her, he was too distracted and only had enough strength to concentrate on one thing at a time. It didn’t matter. This moment was for her, not for Simon. It was her chance to say goodbye.
“This isn’t – how I – envisioned –“ Simon took a deep shuddering breath, his eyes never leaving Kaylee’s face, “ – asking you.”
Kaylee bent and pressed her lips to his sharing the saltiness of her tears. She sobbed against his mouth but his strangled cough drew them apart.
“Marry me,” he whispered, struggling to breathe, to stay awake.
Kaylee nodded only moments later, unable to form the words, and consented to marry a man who would, a few minutes later, die in her arms.
“Loved you,” came a small voice and Kaylee didn’t bother to look up as River knelt beside her.
She stared at the words beneath her fingers, anger warring with grief for dominance in her heart. Their time together had been short, but it had been filled with love, more than she knew she would ever feel again.
River leaned forward and traced the word brother with the pads of her fingers, seemingly absorbing the essence of it’s meaning into her very soul. He had said goodbye to her. And a sob caught in her throat as she remembered those words.
The same words he’d said when he’d been shot in the gut only a few weeks prior.
‘I love you, River.”
‘Love you, Simon.’ River had sobbed, tears leaking out of her eyes despite her desire to stay strong.
‘Take care of Kaylee.’
Kaylee’s fingers trailed over his name and slowly over the word beloved, halting at the word husband. She clutched the bouquet of flowers so tightly the thorns from the roses dug into her hand and coated the stems with little droplets of blood.
“I know,” Kaylee whispered, unable to say more. She had never felt so alone even while surrounded by people who loved and cared for her.
River slid her hand around the one that still held the bouquet and squeezed, her own tears finally breaking free of their prison. “Not alone.” She glanced at the tombstone and shook her head, the smile so faint no one noticed. “Never alone.”
“I wanna take him home,” Kaylee said blandly, her voice emotionless.
She sat on the couch, her legs curled beneath her, a blanket wrapped around her shoulders. She sat within steps of the infirmary her husband had spent so much time in – a place that had ultimately failed him in the end. There was nothing there that could have saved his life.
Mal met Inara’s gaze over Kaylee’s head. The older woman sat beside Kaylee, trying to provide support and comfort where she could.
“Kaylee, sweetie, we can’t go to the Core –“
“Not our home. It’s not home anymore.” River stepped out of the shadows, her skin pale and her face as expressionless and emotionless as Kaylee’s. “Sister’s home. Pretty place. Peaceful. And we can visit.” She sat on the other side of Kaylee and leaned into her arms, giving and accepting comfort from the only other person who could really understand the depth of her grief.
Mal nodded, in no position whatsoever to deny these women anything. “I’ll go set course.”
Jing chang mei yong de - consistently useless
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