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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
Kaylee continues to learn about Simon's views on the crew and the ship as she sneaks a look at his journal.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 974 RATING: 0 SERIES: FIREFLY
The Dr. Tam Journals – Part 2 – The Train Job
Kaylee’s tummy settled down after the second biscuit and she opened the red leather bound notebook again, hoping to finish before morning or before Simon awoke to find her missing and came looking for her. Sometimes she felt the ship shudder or groan in an unfamiliar way and she would awake with a start and rush off to the engine room. A few times he had followed her after a few minutes, groggily asking her what was wrong. He though it would be difficult to explain that the ship had it’s own sounds and rhythms but he understand very well, explaining that a patient was the same, the sound of their breathing, the heartbeat, the pulse, brainwaves, all had a peculiar pattern that if not correct, indicated something was wrong. They found this common ground bound them more tightly in that they were both specialist, although in totally different areas.
The ship was quiet now and Kaylee could relax, alone in the bowels of the vessel. The policy of not having a 24 hour watch had bothered her when she first joined the ship, afraid something would go wrong as they all slept. But as she grew familiar with Serenity and her crew she began to trust them. Wash, and now River, had always set a proper course so they wouldn’t run into a moon or asteroid field. She set the engines at a slower pace as they slept, giving them more time to response to an emergency or a proximity warning of another vessel.
The one time that failed was when Jubal Early had boarded the ship. The Capt’n suspected he had some sort of stealth device on his ship. He had also approached from directly behind in a very small vessel so that might have thrown off the proximity warning. Kaylee shuddered as she remembered the bounty hunter, the cold callous way he had asked if she had ever been raped, then forcing her to tell him where River was, then being tied up and then the fear that gripped her as she lay on the engine room floor until River managed to save them all.
Kaylee pushed these thought aside as she once more took up Simon’s journal. After the events related to Dobson and her shooting he took up a lot of space describing River’s reactions and his attempts to understand what had happened to her on Athenian Island. He knew she had undergone some kind of human behavior modification and that she suffered from some kind of psychosis. Then he began to describe Serenity. Kaylee cringed a bit, expecting the worst.
“Serenity is a Firefly class transport vessel. I’m not sure of its age but it seems to be older than me, perhaps even Shepherd Book, who I would hazard a guess is way past the mid-century point. But it’s a very good design. The cargo bay dominates the lower level as can be expected in a transport vessel. They have various containers about, some empty, others with supplies for the ship. The forward air lock is located here and is not a place I have dared to approach yet. I have a deep fear of space which is ridiculous but not without reason. On my first journey off world as a teenager, an airlock malfunctioned and two passengers returning from a touristy space walk were sucked into the vacuum of space just as they removed their helmets of their space suits. My father and I were planning to go next but of course all such walks were cancelled in light of the accident. Since then I have a dread of airlocks and space. And now I am on a space ship.”
It all made sense now, thought Kaylee. She never new these details but knew he had a fear of space.
“The infirmary is sparse, under equipped and under stocked, but useful and already has come in handy as I treated Kaylee and the other crew members who had been injured. Kaylee’s wound has mostly healed although she still has some discomfort. I finally managed to apologize to her and she was very gracious.”
Again, she remembered that moment, and felt perhaps then was when she really started to have more than a crush on him.
“I need to talk to Reynolds about getting more supplies. It also might be useful to have a store of plasma and whole blood for emergencies. Shepherd Book, River and I are settled in the passenger dorm rooms. They are sparse but comfortable. River often awakes with nightmares so I must comfort her, holding her in my arms rocking her gently until she drifts off again. She keeps mumbling about men with blue hands but won’t tell me what it is about, even if she could remember. Sleep has been very elusive since we have come on board.”
He was always so tired, still. Kaylee felt that they both needed a long vacation away from Serenity, somewhere by themselves. Then she felt a little guilty, forgetting about her new sister-in-law and best friend. Of course, they couldn’t leave River behind.
“The crew sleeps in bunks below decks in the narrow hallway leading to the bridge. I have not been in one of them yet but they can’t be much bigger than the passenger dorms. The dining room is nice, painted a warm yellow, with flowery designs Kaylee said she did. She also decorated the doorway outside her bunk and has some real talent.”
Again Kaylee felt some pleasure at the mention of herself and her abilities. It was always nice to be complimented. The Capt’n had been wary when she had first took up brush and paint shortly after she had first come on board, but when she had finished he said “shiny” and gave her a little bonus after the next job. She had used that money to send her parents a nice anniversary gift.
“River and I feel a little out of place at the dining table, not quite part of the crew, despite Reynolds saying I’m his medic. Jayne is cold and rude still and I’ve made no attempts to be friendly with him. Wash is talkative and we’ve had a few chats but he is often with Zoe or on the bridge. He has a great sense of humor, something Jayne could learn. Reynolds has been polite to River and I but he has a wary mistrust of us and this is not because of whom we are but of who he is. He lives a life on the edge of legality but I sense he really sees himself as the heroic noble type. I am too new to pry into his past but I suspect something happened during the war. As I’ve mentioned before, Inara, Book, and Kaylee have all accepted us and treat us with kindness and friendship, for which we are very grateful”
Kaylee hadn’t really thought much on how they had fit in. It must have been hard for them, to come to Serenity as passengers, then having to stay and learn to be accepted. Kaylee remembered the feeling all too well, her first days on Serenity very strange as she learned she was the reason Bester got fired, as she struggled to learn everything about a Firefly, fearing the Capt’n would fire her too if she messed up. Gradually though she, as had Simon and River, learned all about the crew, learned what to say and what not to say, and finally became an accepted part of the family.
“The engine room is kind of a mess….”
She stopped, felling a little anger, but pressed on, hoping he’d say something nice.
“…its rusting and seems to be about to fall apart….’
No, I must keep reading!
“…yet it all works, thanks to Kaylee. She has made it her second home, has slung a hammock and often spends her quite moments in there.”
A little smile came over her face. Of course it works!
Kaylee quickly read the next few parts, more about River’s problems and Simon’s worry about money.
“It finally ran out today. I approached Reynolds and told him I could no longer pay any money for passage. He then did something that surprised me. He reached into his pocket and handed back all the money I had paid him for the last few weeks. Said ‘Doctor, let’s just forget about that. Only reason I took your money cause I thought you would be leaving us. Seems you got no place else to go.’ Or something to that effect. I asked him about a salary for being medic and he laughed a little, said when a job comes through, I’d get my share. How much we didn’t discuss and I didn’t what to push the point. Not that money has much value to River and I since we can’t leave the ship.”
Kaylee pondered this last and wondered what exactly his arraignment with the Capt’n was. Strangely, as his wife, she hadn’t even thought of that. She’d be sure to find out in the morning and make sure she knew exactly how much money they had and were going to have from now on.
“Well, we’ve had more excited the past few days. A job did come up and it turned out to be another strange adventure with the crew of Serenity. Reynolds, Zoe and Jayne met a contact in a bar and ended up in a brawl of some sort. No serious injures but Reynolds made a strange comment about hitting people being fun. I ignored it, not having forgotten that he had struck me twice already. Seems he has. At first I didn’t know all the details of their “job” but later I leaned they were hired by a man called Niska, who appears to be some sort of criminal master of this region of the ‘verse. We docked at his Skyplex and Reynolds warned me to keep River in check while he was gone to meet Niska.”
“And then we robbed a train. Not me specifically and in fact I wasn’t of much use during the robbery, as Jayne made very clear. I was chatting with Kaylee in the cargo bay, asking what was going on, when he rudely interrupted.”
That conversation had been a while ago, but Kaylee remembered because she had been so shy around him. She had called him Doctor and he had to tell her, again, to call him Simon.
“Kaylee seems a little shy around me…”
Ah! He did notice!
“…but at the same time she seems to be flirting…again. I don’t know what to make of it. She’s very cute, friendly, and optimistic, all of which I find attractive. Yet, I have no time or energy for any….for anything. Not with being a fugitive with a sister to care for”
And then she knew as she always suspected, that he had been interested in her, had noticed, but had forced himself to ignore her, for the sake of River. And perhaps for her sake. He had said since that time, that he had never wanted to drag her into his problems, but she loved him by that point and didn’t care about any of that. After the Reaver fight and the deaths of Wash and Book, she only wanted to live and be loved and hold onto to him for as long as she could or the ‘verse would allow.
“The job did not go well, and my services were needed to fix a bullet wound in, of all people, Jayne. Despite my distaste for this thug I did my job, perhaps a bit too well. Reynolds and Zoe were held by the police for questioning. While they were gone Jayne showed his true colors. The fear he has for Niska and his people was evident as was his desire to be in charge of the ship with the captain gone. I gave him an extra dosage of pain killer and he passed out finally, to the relief of the rest of us. Shepherd Book at this point showed that he knows more than a passing bit about criminals and criminal matters. His advice was well received and we planned to rescue the captain and Zoe by using the prestige of our Ambassador, Inara. Book presented the idea of Reynolds and Zoe being her indentured servants who had tried to escape from her service and steal her money. It worked very well. After she managed to bring back Reynolds and Zoe, a fight occurred in our cargo bay between Niska’s people and our gang. We won.”
We! Simon was nowhere near there! We won! Indeed! Well, Kaylee hadn’t done much herself, hiding and shivering in fear with Inara behind some crates. Battle was not in her blood.
“In fact, I wasn’t present but came on the scene a few short minutes after it ended with Shepherd Book. At this point I learned exactly what we had stolen: medicine badly needed by the people of this mining colony. Reynolds the noble thief returned the medicine to the miners. Later I learned that he tried to make a deal with Niska’s men but the leader refused and Reynolds pushed him into the engine.”
Kaylee felt nausea when she remembered that. At their next stopover she was doing some maintenance when she found his foot still in the boot inside an engine part, wedged in tight. Kaylee refused to touch it and Jayne did the dirty work, tossing the foot into a nearby garbage receptacle without even flinching.
“Jayne hasn’t said anything yet about my doping him but I’m waiting for it. Perhaps Reynolds warned him not to say anything. I’m not sure about their relationship but Jayne seems to fear the Captain. Would he cross Reynolds if given the chance? Perhaps. But Jayne strikes me more as the big bully type who caves in front of real bravery. And there is no denying, despite my feelings about him, that Reynolds is the real thing.”
Kaylee’s brain screamed in frustration. ”What the hell was wrong with Simon? He was on the boat only a few weeks and he already had Jayne and the Capt’n and Book and Wash figured out but why did it take so long to figure me out?” Then again, she thought, Kaylee didn’t have the key to understanding men any more than he had to understanding women.
She put down the notebook and finished the last of her tea. She stretched like a cat and a yawn escaped from her lips. She felt sleep tug at her mind but fought it off, hoping to finish the journal before morning came. Then she thought on what his reaction would be if he found her with it. He might be mad; in fact she was sure he would be. Yet, she was his wife now. No secrets. That was silly also. Married people always had secrets. She felt tore between continuing to read or not, but then pressed on ahead, curiosity winning over her feelings of guilt once again. Besides, the juicy parts about him and her were yet to come.
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