Baby Talk - REPOST
Sunday, November 11, 2007

Maya. Post-BDM. Complete. A welcome to the new baby, and Freya shares with Mal.


“You could’ve stayed,” Mal pointed out as Freya collapsed onto the bed in their bunk. “Mrs Boden said she was more’n happy to make us up our room.” He stepped off the last rung and put his arm through the ladder.

“No. I want to be in my own bed.” She sighed and closed her eyes.

“Even with the big bath next door?”

“Even then.”



“That why you ain't getting undressed?”

“I thought maybe some kind soul might do that for me.” She lifted her head just enough to see him looking at her with amusement, then dropped it back. “Obviously not.”

“Now, wasn’t gonna say that.” He let go of the ladder and stood with his arms crossed. “Just don’t want you to get into the habit of me doing that kinda thing for you.”

“You did. For a long while,” she pointed out, and shivered just a little.

“Yeah, well, that wasn’t through your choice.” He knew what she was talking about, and really didn’t want to go there. Instead he crossed to the bed and lifted her leg, pulling off her boot and tossing it into the corner of the room. “But what’s got you needing my assistance today?” The other boot went the same way.

“It’s just …”

He sat down next to her, his hand on her belly. “Tell me.”

“The night here is too long,” Freya complained.

“It’s always night on Serenity.”

“It’s not the same.”

“I know it, darlin’.” He undid the buttons on her shirt. “Throws you a little, doesn’t it?”

“What’s wrong with twenty-four hour days?” Freya said, sighing as he ran his hand across her skin.

“Just happens that way. Lazarus has twenty nine, and one little moon I know of has fifteen. People get used to it.”

“I don’t want to.”

“You don’t have to.”

“I suppose.”


“I suppose,” River said softly, slipping out of her dress.

“Suppose what?” Jayne asked, putting his gun away carefully on the wall mount.

“Nothing.” She stretched, her muscles and tendons lengthening in the small light.

He watched, feeling himself begin to engorge, his pants tightening.

“So did you have a nice trip with Mal?” River asked, picking up her clothes and giving Jayne a clear view of her backside.

“Uh … yeah. Guess.”

“Talk about anything interesting?”

“You mean apart from how Hank is feng kuang?” He licked his lips.

“No, that’s me,” she said, smiling at him over her shoulder.

“You saying we can’t have more’n one of you on the boat at a time?”

“That is an interesting theory,” she said, turning back to him, her naked skin glowing. “If there were two of us, would we cancel each other out?”

“You feel cancelled out?” he asked, his eyes raking her flesh.

“I feel …” She smiled. “Are you going to get undressed or not?”

In less than a minute his clothes were on the floor and he was in bed, holding the cover up for her. She slid in next to him.

“When do you think they’ll tell?” she asked, trailing her fingers through the hair on his chest.

He looked down at her. “Tell what?” he asked.


“So when’re we gonna tell the others?” he asked.

“Do you want to? I mean, right away?”

“Well, no. I’d like it to be our secret for a while. Least until it’s time to leave. Wouldn’t want to take anything away from Zoe and Hank.”

She smiled at him. “You’re a good man.”

“No. Just like to be the centre of attention once in a while, and can’t do that if someone else is more important.”

She hugged him, feeling the slight roughness of his shirt against her flesh. “I love you,” she said, snuggling as close as she could get.

“Well, that’s good to know.” He wrapped his own arms around her. “But we ain’t even sure you are pregnant yet.”

“I’m sure.”

“Yeah, but Simon hasn’t done that thing with his doohickey, and until then –“

“I’m pregnant, Mal.” She lifted herself up so she could look into his blue eyes. “You made me look, and … I’m sure.”

“Frey, darlin’, I so want you to be, but I’m just a bit worried that –“

“You want to see?”


“You want to see?” she asked, her hand moving down his body.

“See what?” His mind was disengaging.

“The future.”

“Ain't so much interested in that right now, moonbrain,” he murmured, then groaned as her questing fingers found their target. “Just the … wuh de mah … present kinda got my attention at the moment.”

“But the future can be so interesting.”

He couldn’t take any more. He took her by the shoulders and turned her over, pressing her into the mattress with his body. “I know what I see in our future, River. And I think you’re gonna like it.” He kissed her neck, his mouth trailing down.

“Show me.”


“Show me?” Mal asked. “You can do that?

Freya moved over on the bed. “Just relax. I don’t know if this will work, but …”

He looked down at her, then lay down next to her. He could feel her heat through the clothes he still wore, and as she laid one leg across his thigh, he felt a jolt in his nethers. “Relax.”

“You think I can do that with you doing … that?”

“If it works at all I could probably do it without touching you at all, but where’s the fun in that?” She smiled at him, and laid her head on his shoulder. One hand eased inside his shirt, laying lightly on his chest.

“But you’re making me think of all other kinds of fun.”

“Close your eyes.”

“Frey –“

“Close them.”

He did as he was told, and for a long while there was nothing, and he began to wonder if she’d fallen asleep, then suddenly he was her. Only not her. Or maybe both of them. He could still feel her arm across him, her leg over his hip, but he could also feel his body under hers, his own flesh goose-pimpling under her … his fingers.


“Hold on,” she whispered, and the words came from his own lips.

He wanted to open his eyes, to make sure it was his body lying here, but she was turning inwards. There was a sensation like travelling very fast, the air drawn away from him, sinking down into heat and darkness, until he thought he could fall no further. Then … there. Just a little light. A tiny flicker of life, barely there, but brave enough to battle the night.

“Frey …”

She couldn’t hold him there, but he’d seen. His eyes flew open and he rolled onto his side, getting his elbow under him so he could look at her. She looked up at him somewhat shakily.

“Believe me now?” she asked, her voice catching.

“Was that …”

“Your child.”

“So small …” He put his hand on her belly, his face open, wondering.

“She’ll be beautiful.”

“A girl?” Moisture blurred his gaze. “You can tell that?”

“Not yet. But … I’m sure.”

“You know.”


“You know, don’t’cha?” Jayne asked at last, the sweat drying on his body.

“Do I?”

“You read it.”

“Read what?”

“River, you try that with me and I’ll be putting you over my knee.”

She pushed her hair out of her eyes and gazed at him. “Perhaps later.”

He felt warmth suffuse him again. “You mean you’d –“

“I don’t know. But it might be interesting.”

“And you’re trying to put me off.”

“Was I?”

“River …”

“If I did know something, I couldn’t say. Not unless you knew the same thing as well.”

“Who’s saying I don’t?”

“Do you?”

“Do I what?” He grinned, letting her have a taste of her own game back again.


“Know what?”

She sighed irritably and tried to roll away from him, but he grunted and took hold of her hip, pulling her so she lay across his muscular thigh. “They gonna be okay?” he asked at last.

“Complete,” she whispered, letting her head fall onto his chest.

He grinned in the darkness.


In the bedroom in the house, Hank sat in the chair near the fire. He was gazing down at the bundle in his arms.

“Hey there,” he murmured. “I’m your daddy. Guess you know that by now. Only I’ll be telling you often enough over the next … oh, several decades, I guess. Through the fights and the love … I’ll be telling you.”

The baby waved his fist at him, but didn’t answer. Hank grinned. Be surprised if he did.

“Ain't figured out your name yet, which I apologise over. We’ve been talking, a lot, and disagreeing over almost every single one we came up with. But you’ll have a name, and a family, and a Pa who should, by rights, be locked up for being an A-grade idiot, but I hope you’ll love.”

He touched his son’s face gently, marvelling at the softness of his skin.

“I’d been thinking about … though it’s crazy. I mean, Mal called his son after his father, so he’d think I was just following suit if I did the same, but … it would’ve been nice. He’d’ve thought you were grand, even if he probably never thought I’d have kids. Wish you could’ve met him. Hell, wish I could’ve grown up with him. Him and my Ma both.” He held his son a little tighter. “That ain't gonna be the way with us, though. Your momma and me, we’re gonna be around a long time. Get in your way, so to speak. Stop you being foolish, even when you’re all grown up with kids of your own.”

A chuckle escaped his lips, suppressed quickly in case he woke Zoe.

“Kids of your own. Here you are, just a few hours old and I've got you married with a family. And you will be married, I can tell you that. No living in sin for you.”

The baby screwed his face up, and a small wail erupted.

“Hey, no, if that’s what you want, you can live in sin!” Hank didn’t know what to do.

“He’s hungry.”

Hank looked up, seeing Zoe standing next to him, wrapped in a thick robe.

“Should you be up?” Hank asked, getting up quickly so she could sit down in the chair.

She sank gratefully into it, feeling the warmth from the fire on her skin. “He’s hungry,” she repeated. “And as you don’t have the equipment …”

“You sure? I mean that he’s hungry.”

“Simon said he’d need milk regularly.” She looked into his face. “So are you going to let me feed him?” she asked softly, pulling the front of her robe open to expose one swollen breast.

Hank swallowed. “I … I guess.” He handed his son over, and watched as she put him to her nipple. Immediately he began to suckle, his little hands kneading the flesh.

Hank’s legs gave way and he staggered back a little until he was against the wall, sliding down into a sitting position.

“You okay?” Zoe asked, looking up at him.

“Ah … sure … I'm … shiny.” He managed to get the words out around the lump in his throat at the sight of the woman he adored holding his son, feeding him, the firelight catching her dark skin and turning her into a goddess.

She smiled at him. “Things are never gonna be the same again, are they?” she said quietly, looking back down at her baby.

“No … I guess they ain’t.” He licked dry lips. “But they’re gonna be better.”

She lifted her gaze to him again. “You think?”

“I know.”

She nodded slowly. “Think you might be right.” Her eyes didn’t move for a moment. “And we’re still due that talk.”

“About me being stupid?”

“That’s the one.”

“You know, right now, I don’t think I care if you kill me.”


“Not … not seeing that.” His eyes were fixed on his son taking in nourishment.

“What was his name?”

“What?” He couldn’t look away from his son.

“Your father. What was his name?”

“Ben. Benjamin.”

“Ben.” Zoe tried it out, then glanced down at her little boy. “It’s a good name.”

“I always thought so.”

“Why didn’t you suggest it?”

“I … it seemed … clichéd.”

She laughed softly. “Nothing wrong with that. ‘Sides, I think it fits.”

He leaned forward. “You do?”

“I do.” Looking down at her son she smoothed the dark hair on his head. “Welcome to the ‘verse, Benjamin Malcolm Hoban Mills.”

“Mills?” He could hardly speak.

“You’re his father. And I was always a traditionalist.” She smiled at him.

“Are you going to marry me?”

“We can talk about that. Later.” She settled back a little into the chair.

“And Malcolm?”

“Can’t see the Captain being happy otherwise,” she teased, then added, “He’s my best friend.”

“I know. And that’s fine. So’s Hoban.”

“For Wash.”

“I know.” He levered himself to his knees and moved forwards enough so that he could sit next to her in the firelight. “So we going to have a big family?” he asked.

“Is that what you want?”

He laughed softly. “I want you, Zoe. In my life for ever.”

“I’m not going anywhere.”

“Good. Good.” He rested his chin on her knee, gazing at their son. “Good.”


Thursday, November 15, 2007 6:30 PM


I hadn't made it this far the first time. Glad to read it now -- it's very nice. Great voices, especially River and Jayne.

Thursday, October 14, 2010 4:43 AM


Oh wow... that was way cool, the bit of Mal "seeing" the Bean. Loved it lots. TY for letting us have a look, too, so to speak.


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Now and Then - a Christmas story
“Then do you have a better suggestion? No, let me rephrase that. Do you have a more sensible suggestion that doesn’t involve us getting lost and freezing to death?”

[Maya. Post-BDM. A little standalone festive tale that kind of fits into where I am in the Maya timeline, but works outside too. Enjoy!]

Monied Individual - Epilogue
"I honestly don’t know if my pilot wants to go around with flowers and curlicues carved into his leg.”
[Maya. Post-BDM. The end of the story, and the beginning of the last ...]

Monied Individual - Part XX
Mal took a deep breath, allowing it out slowly through his nostrils, and now his next words were the honest truth. “Ain’t surprised. No matter how good you are, and I’m not complaining, I’ve seen enough battle wounds, had to help out at the odd amputation on occasion. And I don’t have to be a doc myself to tell his leg ain’t quite the colour it should be, even taking into account his usual pasty complexion. What you did … didn’t work, did it?”
[Maya. Post-BDM. Simon has no choice, and Luke comes around.]

Monied Individual - Part XIX
“His name’s Jayne?”

“What’s wrong with that?” the ex-mercenary demanded from the doorway.

“Nothing, nothing! I just … I don’t think I’ve ever met a man … anyone else by that name.”

“Yeah, he’s a mystery to all of us,” Mal said. “Even his wife.”

[Maya. Post-BDM. Hank's not out of the woods yet, and Mal has a conversation. Enjoy!]

Monied Individual - Part XVIII
Jayne had told him a story once, about being on the hunt for someone who owed him something or other. He’d waited for his target for three hours in four inches of slush as the temperature dropped, and had grinned when he’d admitted to Hank that he’d had to break his feet free from the ice when he’d finished.
[Maya. Post-BDM. The Fosters show their true colours, Jayne attempts a rescue, and the others may be too late.]

Snow at Christmas
She’d seen his memories of his Ma, the Christmases when he was a boy on Shadow, even a faint echo of one before his Pa died, all still there, not diminished by his burning, glowing celebrations of now with Freya.

[Maya. Post-BDM. A seasonal one-off - enjoy!]

Monied Individual - Part XVII
Jayne hadn’t waited, but planted a foot by the lock. The door was old, the wood solid, but little could stand against a determined Cobb boot with his full weight behind it. It burst open.

[Maya. Post-BDM. The search for Hank continues. Read, enjoy, review!]

Monied Individual - Part XVI
He slammed the door behind him, making the plates rattle on the sideboard. “It’s okay, girl, I ain't gonna hurt you.” The cook, as tradition dictated, plump and rosy cheeked with her arms covered to the elbows in flour, but with a gypsy voluptuousness, picked up a rolling pin.

[Maya. Post-BDM. Kaylee finds the problem with Serenity, and Jayne starts his quest. Read, enjoy, review!]

Monied Individual - Part XV
“Did we …” “We did.” “Why?” As she raised an eyebrow at him he went on quickly, “I mean, we got a comfy bunk, not that far away. Is there any particular reason we’re in here instead?” “You don’t remember?” He concentrated for a moment, and the activities of a few hours previously burst onto him like a sunbeam. “Oh, right,” he acknowledged happily.

[Maya. Post-BDM. A little with each Serenity couple, but something goes bang. Read, enjoy, review!]

“Did we …” “We did.” “Why?” As she raised an eyebrow at him he went on quickly, “I mean, we got a comfy bunk, not that far away. Is there any particular reason we’re in here instead?” “You don’t remember?” He concentrated for a moment, and the activities of a few hours previously burst onto him like a sunbeam. “Oh, right,” he acknowledged happily.

[Maya. Post-BDM. A little with each Serenity couple, but something goes bang. Read, enjoy, review!]