Running Right
Friday, August 25, 2006

I was listening to firefly talk and one of the articles was Why Zoe Will Beat an Innocent Man to Death in Serenity 2. And I guess this is my scene from the reasons the author of the article said. Did that make sense? Basically its based off that.


Zoë made herself get out of bed. She sat on the edge gazing into the darkness of her room. She rolled her neck around to work stiffness out of it. She could hear the crackles her neck made as she rolled it. She sighed and got dressed slowly. Her back was aching, but she pushed back the physical pain. Before she worked her way up the ladder she kissed the capture of her husband. “Morning, dear.” She said quietly.

When she reached the top she was greeted by Mal. “It’s just gonna be me and you.” She didn’t respond just looked back at the cockpit. She starred in it for a moment as if she wished hard enough he would appear. But, she knew better than to wish.

“She ain’t runnin’ right.” Kaylee’s voice snapped Zoë out of her trance. She didn’t even realize that Kaylee and Mal were talking. “She’s runnin’ right?” “Yeah.” “Well’s that’s good enough.” “But, Cap’n…” Kaylee whined. “We ain’t got the coin Kaylee. We’ll see… Just work With what you got.” Mal gently brushed by the disappointed Kaylee. Zoë followed him out.

“Sir.” Zoë said quietly. “Don’t want to hear it. We’ve had this discussion before.” Mal stopped at the last step leading down to the cargo bay. “Saving it for a rainy day.” Zoë arched her eyebrow. “A rainy day sir? We live in space. There’s no rain in space.” Mal smiled slightly. “Always a cynic.” “I supposed.”

Jayne joined them at the foot of the step. “Mule’s ready. Sure you don’t want me to go along?” “No, need you here on the ship. Need some muscle to clear out the cargo bay.” “You ain’t payin’ me to play maid, Mal.” Jayne said sharply. Mal and Zoë ignored Jayne and hopped on the mule. “We’ll be back in a few hours.” Mal said as they drove off. “Jack ass.” Jayne closed the doors to the cargo bay.

Mal parked the mule behind a bar in an alleyway. The smell of piss, vomit, and all the other niceties of a disreputable dark alley hit them both hard. “What do you suppose this says about our character that we meet most of our clients in dark, smelly, alleys?”

He knocked on the door. The door opened and they were introduced to a large gun in their faces. They both put their hands up. “You Reynolds?” A large oafish looking man asked. “I am and this is my first mate Zoë.” The man put his gun away. “Come in. Witt’s been waitin’ for ya.”

They followed the man into the bar. The smell inside was equally as repugnant as the alleyway. He led them to a back table. “Witt be out in a few. Have a drink.” The oaf snapped and a pretty barmaid came over. “Bring ‘em drinks, Sally.” The girl nodded and left. “I’ll tell Witt you’re here.”

The girl returned shortly With their drinks. Mal gave her a couple of coins for her trouble. He snipped the drink. “Mighty fine place they got here. The ambiance is wonderful.” At another table there was a man vomiting on the floor. Zoë didn’t touch her drink. She just cased the place. “I don’t like it, sir.” “What’s to like? It’s a lashi dong, but the contact seemed on the up and up.” Mal took another taste. “I know this ain’t the usual fine citizens we’re use’d to dealing with, but we’re at the bottom of the barrel, Zoë.” “Speaking of the bottom…there’s our man.” Zoë nodded her head towards a tall, lanky man that walked towards them.

“Reynolds.” The man said. Mal got up to shake his hand properly. “Good to meet ya, Witt. This here is my first mate Zoë.” Witt eyed Zoë. She could feel him undressing her with his eyes. She never felt so dirty in her life. “Let’s talk business.” Mal interrupted. “Yes, business.” Witt licked his lips, never taking his eyes off of Zoë. “I need some cargo taken off world. The law here is real particular about what leaves planetside.” “Where you looking for your cargo to go?” “Beylix.” “Sounds easy enough.” “There’s a catch…” “Isn’t always.” Mal said snidely.

“Cap’n…” Kaylee’s voice crackled through the com. “Cap’n you there?” Mal pulled the com out of his pocket. “Kaylee what is it? I’m in the middle of dealing here.” “Sorry Cap’n…but the…” Kaylee cut out. “blew out, there’s a fire…Jayne…” “What?” Mal smiled politely. “I gotta handle this. Witt you don’t mind finishing up with Zoë here do you?” “Not at all Captain you go and handle your little fire.” Witt grinned from ear to ear. He was missing some teeth and the teeth he did have were stained yellow. “Zoë.” “Go ahead sir.” “What in the gorram hell is gonna on Kaylee…” Mal snapped into the com as he walked away leaving Zoë with Witt.

Witt licked his lips again. “I see you haven’t touched your drink. Let me refresh it for you.” He snapped his fingers again and Sally returned. “Why don’t you go and get that bottle of whiskey that’s behind the board. You like whiskey?” Zoë didn’t answer. “Course you do. Fine woman like yourself.” “Let’s get’s this over with. What kind of catch are we talking about?” “Ssshhh. We can talk business later.”

“Zoë! Zoë!” Mal cried out. She didn’t respond. Zoë had Witt on the floor and she was pounding her fist into his body. “Zoë! Gorramit git off of him!” The oaf that opened the door reached Zoë and Witt first. He tried to pull Zoë off of Witt but he got elbowed in the face. Zoë then turned her rage against the oaf. She took her gun out and hit him in the face with the butt. He fell to the floor hard. “Corporal!” Mal shouted. He pulled Zoë off of the oaf. She was heaving up and down. Her face was full of rage. It frighten Mal a bit, Zoe had always been the picture of control. She did something else that was also out of character, she cried. She didn’t cry softly or whimper this was a gut wrenching sob that were coming out of Zoë. Mal didn’t say anything he just held her tight. Mal just held her as she let out all her pain that she held on to so tight over the past year.

The others thought it wasn’t right the way Zoë carried on after she lost Wash. Kaylee cried almost everyday for a month whenever something reminded her of Wash. Jayne liked to tell stories about how he beat Wash in arm wrestling. Simon always said that Wash was the biggest baby when it came to needles. Inara reminisced about the time that Wash walked in her shuttle her first day and caught her in the middle of her cleansing ceremony. Even River would spout out nonsensical things about Wash from time to time. But, Zoë kept quiet never partaking in the walks down memory lane when it came to Wash. The others would push Mal into making Zoë talk about Wash, but he knew Zoë better. She would come around on her own time. He held Zoë as long as she wanted to be held. She pulled away from him slowly. Mal wiped the tears from her face. “Got it all out?” She nodded. They both looked on the floor where Witt laid. Sally was kneeling beside him. “He’s dead.” She said quietly as she riffled through his pockets. She pulled out a small coin purse. “He ain’t paid me in three months.” The girl said as she put the purse in her pocket. “Ain’t nobody gonna miss Witt none.” Sally walked quietly back to the bar. Most patrons who were sober enough had filed out a long while ago. The others were too drunk to even tell where their hands were. “We should be goning.” Mal said. They climbed back on the mule and headed back to Serenity. When they got back Mal didn’t tell the rest of the crew why their contact had fell through or why they had to peel out of there in a hurry. He just chalked it up to status quo.He would never tell them that Zoe lost control and beat their contact to death and he would never bring it up to her. Mal wouldn’t do that to Zoë.

He found her later that night sitting in the pilot’s chair.“Kaylee’s gonna be bugging me about that part ‘til my ears bleed.” Before he sat down he picked up one of Wash’s dinosaurs. “Sooooo…what’s with the dinosaurs?” Mal asked. Zoë smiled slightly. “I have no idea…one night I rolled over and had a stegosaurs stick me in the butt.” Mal closed his eyes and laughed deeply. “That was more than I was prepared to hear.” He studied the toy a bit. “The man did love his toys. Remember the first time, we caught him talking to ‘em like they was real? You wanted to pitch him off the boat right then and there.” Both of them laughed together. Mal got up and placed the toy in Zoë’s hand. “Good to have you back.” She looked at the toy in her hand. “Good to be back, sir.”

**** Translation lashi dong: shit hole

**** I've had a bit of writers block so if this is bad, sorry. I just wanted to write something. And so I did.


Friday, August 25, 2006 1:51 PM


Nice to read a story about Zoe. It rings true.

Friday, August 25, 2006 8:38 PM


Really good aye

Saturday, August 26, 2006 12:03 AM


This was perfect, my only confusion was in Kaylee saying something 'blew out' and that there was a fire. Not sure how that could happen when the ship wasn't flying. I particularly loved how Zoe and Mal slipped right back into the way they always are together, the fit nice and natural again. Shiny, Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Tuesday, August 29, 2006 8:00 PM


Amazing work here, Tonyahuqt03...though I gotta wonder how Zoe was feeling during the moments when she was beating the scuzzy hundan to death or sobbing her heart out against Mal. Cuz ya gotta would be mighty interesting to plumb her mental depths right then:(



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