Self Contained Chapter 7
Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Xiaofan's gone, Mal talks to Simon, Zoe and Wash come to an understanding. Some suggestive conversation towards the end. And maybe a bit of disturbing imagery at the end as well.


Title: self contained

Author: joly

Rating: PG

Genre: Drama-y, Romance-y, Angst-y (very little), Adventure-y

Pairing: Mostly Simon/Kaylee

Spoilers: All the way to ‘Objects in Space’. But no BDM spoilers. In this story that hasn’t happened yet. We can, however, assume that things have gone all canon-like after ‘Ariel’ and up til this point.

Summary: A continuation of ‘Anti Hero‘. Set significantly after ’Objects in Space’. Xiaofan has to make a quick exit after thugs bust into her practice. She assumes it’s just a robbery gone wrong. But is it ever that simple? It’s now her turn to call on the help of her old friend Simon Tam and the crew of Serenity.

Disclaimer: I don’t own Firefly, the crew, the ‘Verse, any of that stuff. I just like to tell stories. Joss and The Man own the stuff. All the OFC’s are mine and I reserve the right to use them any way I please. I make no money, I expect none. Peace and Blessings.

Thanks: To everyone who read ‘Anti Hero’, much thanks. Makes me all squishy inside.

Distribution: Any where, just let me know so’s I can do a little dance.

Feedback: Please and Thank You. Read and review at your leisure. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Xiaofan wanted to keep the good byes short. She’d already spent time with Kaylee and River. She and Simon had said a quiet good bye about an hour before they got to Bellerophon.

And now, outside the estate where she would practice her trade, the only farewells left to be said were to Zoe, Wash and Jayne. The captain was conspicuously absent from the cargo bay during Xiaofan’s departure. She'd decided not to take it personally.

Zoe was overseeing her husband and Jayne, who were there to carry the boxes of items she’d bought while traveling with Serenity. She’d completely given up on the thought of returning to her home. There was really nothing there she couldn’t get anywhere else. The only thing she would truly miss would be the Yue Fu piece in her sitting room. It had been so beautifully done…

But it was only a thing. And she could procure items aplenty in her new position. She was going to be paid an obscene amount of money to look after the Magellan Williard family. She’d been in contact with Mister Williard’s executive assistant for about the last 10 days as they vetted her history, background checks and the like.

Now, all she had to do was provide a nonrefundable sample of genetic material and submit to a DNA scan. All of that would be done before she could even set foot on the premises.

Which is why Xiaofan was sitting in the cargo bay. She was waiting for the assistant, one Mister Fong. She would give her ‘sample’ which could then be compared to the DNA she’d given while working on Osiris. Core planets were nothing if not efficient with the keeping of biological records.

Zoe was directing the two men in moving Xiaofan’s things from the back of the cargo bay towards the front. After making sure that everything was out of her room in guest quarters, Xiaofan joined them.

“You said all your good byes then, Xiaofan?” Zoe asked as the other woman, who had joined her by the exit.

“Yes. Except to you and your husband, and Jayne.”

“And the Captain?”

“I… I might have decided not to push my luck.”

“Could be a good idea.”

Xiaofan saw a hover craft approach Serenity. By the looks of the passenger Xiaofan was fairly sure she was about to meet Mister Fong. When it came to a halt and the gentlemen disembarked, Xiaofan left the cargo bay to meet him.

“Mister Fong, I presume?”

“You are Doctor Lo, allegedly?”

“I allege,” she said, smiling.

Mister Fong frowned, apparently he did not find Xiaofan amusing.

“Then, if you are amenable, we can begin the business of verifying your identity.”

“Of course.”

Jayne could be heard from the entrance of the cargo saying, “They is paranoid around these parts, huh?”

Mister Fong ignored the mercenary’s comment and continued in his business.

“If you would place your hand here,” the assiduously competent man began, producing a hand-sized metal box from his case, “It will read your hand print and also take DNA samples.”

“Make sure it don’t take the whole thing,” Jayne called from behind her. Zoe gave him a look that clearly said, ‘One more word and it’s the gag.’

Mister Fong opened the box on a side hinge, and there was an obvious place to put her hand. Xiaofan fit it in the appropriate position and Mister Fong closed the box with a click. After a moment of humming softly the box paused. There was then a sharp pain in each of her fingertips and in several places on her palm.

Xiaofan drew a sharp breath, trying to keep from yanking her hand away. Which would really have done no good, as the box was attached to her hand.

“The device takes DNA from several areas.”

“That might have been nice to know before I put my hand inside.”

“My apologies.”

Somehow, Xiaofan doubted Fong‘s sincerity.

The box clicked open and she was able to remove her hand. She was astounded to find no sign of punctures.

“Amazing bit of machinery, yes?”


“It will take a moment to process and then compare to the sample submitted by Capital City Hospital.”

“But, it will be soon? Shall I wait here, or should I have a seat inside?”

“It’s done.”


“Yes, thank you, Doctor Lo. If you would have your belongings loaded onto the hover we’ll be on our way.”

“Sure. Zoe-” she turned to the ship and saw the two men already bringing the few boxes out of the ship.

Wash stopped by Xiaofan after he brought the last box.

“We’ll miss you.”

“I’ll miss all of you, too.”

Jayne took a minute to get one last quip in.

“If ya ever need a hand. Ya know with any heavy liftin’… Call Simon, okay?”

“You are very witty, Jayne. It’s been a pleasure spending this time with you.”

“Yeah, whatever.”

Xiaofan took one last look at Serenity. She noticed Simon, Kaylee and River at the cargo bay entrance of the firefly. She waved and the three returned her good bye.

“I’m ready Mister Fong.


“We never get out to Bellerophon, we won’t see her again.”

“We might.”


“Okay, we probably won’t, but we can talk to her by wave and…”

“I thought it was Kaylee’s job to look on the bright side,” Mal said joining them in the infirmary.

“I don’t see it as outside my job description.”

“Well, hanging about with you ain’t part of the mechanics job… thingie. I need you in the engine room, Kaylee.”

“I’m goin’, Cap’.”

After the young woman was gone and Simon had stood there expectantly long enough, Mal spoke.

“You hurt that girl and I’ll string ya up.”

Simon sighed, dramatically.

“I can’t say I’m surprised by the threat. But I can say, you don’t need to. I’ve decided I need to take about thirty extra seconds before answering and I should stop about one sentence short in my responses. Hopefully that will curtail any serious foot and mouth issues.”

There had been a time when the doc would’ve huffed and puffed and bristled at a comment like that. Mal was glad those days were coming to a close.

“See that you do.”

He turned to go.

“One more thing, Captain.”


“Xiaofan will still have access to certain meds. I’ll need to stop by two or three times a year, maybe just a little more, to re-supply. And of course, there would be items for sale, to make the trip worthwhile.”

“This so Kaylee can visit her new friend every once in a while, or so you can visit your old friend?”


Judging from the look on Mal’s face, Simon decided to be more plain.

“Xiaofan and I are just friends. One of the very few I would trust with my life now, after all that’s happened. And I’m glad Kaylee likes her as well. River even seems to get along with her. So, yes, I would like to visit every once in a while. And I made sure it would be a profitable visit.”

“You really are bucking for that criminal mastermind award.” Mal did turn to leave this time. “Might think you want my job.”

“No thanks, Captain, I prefer the patching of holes to the receiving of them.”


Zoe and Wash lay in each others arms, flushed and sated. Wash nuzzled his wife’s neck and tangled his finger’s in her hair. His mind blessedly blank, save for the love and satisfaction he felt with her.

“I’ve been talking to Kaylee,” Wash said, quietly.


“She said something about advising you to go off your birth control and poking holes in the condoms.”

Zoe stiffened.

“And you think now is the time to bring this up?”

“She also told me how you rejected the idea. That it was wrong.”

“Did she?”

“She also said she knew it was wrong to suggest it, but she was so concerned about us, she didn’t know what to do.”

“She’s a sweet girl.”

“That she is.”


“And what, lamby toes?”

“Did you bring it up for no reason?”

Wash lay by his wife’s side quietly for a long moment before answering.

“I want to meet our children, Zo.”

Her eyes went wide.

“Just like that?”

“What she said...” he said, flustered.

Zoe sat up, getting ready to ream her husband a completely new one.

“We go back and forth forever, but you have a couple of conversations with Kaylee and suddenly you’re ready. Excuse me if…”

Wash pressed his lips to Zoe’s. She wasn’t going to let him get away with it, she thought, then wrapped her arms around him tighter.

Wash moved back a bit and said.

“Kaylee was right. I’ve wanted to have a baby with you since… Since you agreed to be my wife. But I talked myself out of it,” he sighed, “I wracked my brain for reasons not to… And it was easy. Then I realized I didn’t want easy. I wanted to meet the little ones we were meant to have.”

Zoe felt tears well up in her eyes and brushed them away.

“I don’t want to force this.”

“I know.”

Her eyes softened and she relaxed against him.

“Our babies will be so beautiful.”

“Because their mother is the most beautiful woman in the ‘Verse.”

Zoe smirked at her husband.

“Now you’re just buttering me up, so I’ll do that thing with my tongue.”

Wash grinned back at her.

“Maybe,” he said, moving over her, pressing his lips to the soft skin of her throat, “As long as I get to do that thing with my tongue.”

“How can I deny anything, my love?”

“I don’t see how you could.”


Mister Williard pressed the button to discontinue the communication.

"Mister Fong says he has verified her identity. It is Lo Xiaofan Niu," he spoke, trembling. He wiped his brow nervously and turned to the men behind him. "You can take her and go. Leave my family..."

"You are in no position to be issuing commands, Mister Williard," the tall man said, glowering at the man, now shrinking away from the other man’s companion. Two crept toward the man, murder in his eyes, hand going to the blade on his hip.

"I'm... sorry," he whispered. This man, so unaccustomed to begging, was now prostrate, pleading. "Just let my wife and children go. They haven't seen you. Please."

The tall man raised one eyebrow and looked at his companion.


The man coiled back into himself and considered.

"The children may go. But the woman is forfeit."

"But she's done nothing... She's...," he gasped.

The tall man looked at Two with amusement.

"Sparing the children? You've gone soft?"

"I have not," he spat, "They're ugly. It doesn't do to play with ugly children. No thrill." He turned to Williard. "But ugly, dirty adults..."

"Fine. Do as you will. My men and I will meet Doctor Lo at the hover pad. Be done in thirty minutes."

"So soon."

"I won't indulge you further. In thirty minutes my ship will leave."

With that the tall man strode out of Williard's office, closing the door behind him.

Two turned to the terrified man, leaping at him like some kind of jungle cat from Earth that was. The urge to rend with teeth and nails was over-powering. So compelling that at first, Williard was sure the psychopath was going to eat him.

The feral gleam in Two's eyes sharpened.

"We shall play."


A/N: Thanks to everyone. It helps the creative juices to flow knowing anyone enjoys what goes on in my weird little head.


Tuesday, May 6, 2008 4:38 PM


I love what goes on in your weird little head...because it helps me to know I'm not the only one with a weird little head...I love it. You are a wonderful writer.


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Capacity Chapter 15

Capacity Chapter 14
Just about to set foot on Markham and face the bad. One way or the other.

Capacity Chapter 13
Plot moves forward. People from the past poke there heads in. Serenity is quiet and mournful.

Capacity Chapter 12
Mal and the crew find out exactly how horribly they'd been used.

Capacity Chapter 11
The crew does not find what they expected on Kerry.

Capacity Chapter 10
It’s just not a normal day on Serenity unless somebody gets shot, threatened or beat up.

Capacity Chapter 9
It’s a long story… Mal and Ruby bond some more, Xiaofan gets her new face and… then she leaves. Wash and Zoe have a chat and Jayne gets over his issues with Simon and Xiaofan.

Capacity Chapter 8
Out in the black, heading to the next destination. Ruby gets on as a passenger and Xiaofan bullies Simon into getting her a new face.

Capacity Chapter 7
Still on Abaddon Station, Xiaofan confronts her brother, Mal confronts the mystery woman.

Capacity Chapter 6
A stopover at Abaddon Station, weirdness ensues.