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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
Allan and Kaylee start to figure out the Blue Sun weapon and Mal and Zoe have a little heart to heart chat.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1098 RATING: 8 SERIES: FIREFLY
Out to the black Chapter 13
Disclaimer: Joss, Fox, Universal Own em’. I’m just playing. No money being made.
This is my first Fan Fiction ever. Constructive reviews are shiny.
This fic takes place two years after Serenity (BDM) and has the established couples of Simon/Kaylee and Mal/Inara along with a Jayne/River friendship. Might become Rayne later… Maybe, Maybe not
A/N: This chapter is a bit longer than others and very fluffy. Not to worry, the action starts back up a bit more over the next few chapters. And there is some angst coming as well.
Also Thanks to my Beta Chris…You’ve been a great help.
Out to the black
Chapter Thirteen – Blessing and Buffett
Jayne stuck his head through the hatch to Serenity’s Bridge, “Hey Moony, you seen Gramps?”
River turned from the controls, “Allan is in the engine room with Kaylee.”
“Thanks…” The big man turned to leave.
“Jayne, please stay a moment.”
“Sure… you okay, shoulder still buggin ya?”
“It is healing satisfactorily. But that is not what I wanted to talk about.”
Dropping himself in the co-pilots chair, Jayne looked at his diminutive partner in crime, suddenly concerned, “What’s on yer mind girl?”
River drew her legs up to her chest, her head down. Her hair hiding most of her face, “Jayne… We are friends, right?” Her voice seemed small
Jayne looked to be lost in thought a moment, then answered, “Not at first, but now… Yeah I 'spose we’re friends. Specially now you ain’t crazy no more.”
“Still crazy. Just hide it better.”
“Nah, you’re better, even I can tell.”
River looked up at Jayne and smiled, “Thank you.”
“Do you think I’m pretty?” River asked out of the blue.
Jayne was stunned for a moment by the question, not quite sure where it had come from. He could admit to himself that the girl was a looker. Jayne decided that honesty was the best policy in this case, especially since River was a reader.
“Yeah, I think yer pretty.”
River’s face broke into a wide smile that lit up the room. “Thank you Jayne,” River said as she stood from the chair. Moving next to Jayne, she bent down and pecked the big man the cheek. Jayne was stunned, not sure what to do. River spun in place and strode purposely to the hatch.
“My turn to make lunch, you had better bring Allan his gun back before we eat.” She called over her shoulder.
Jayne moved his hand to where the girl had kissed his cheek, a confused look on his face.
Allan and Kaylee were still engrossed in discovering the secrets of the weapon the Blue Hands had used on Simon and River. The device was completely dismantled and spread across Kaylee’s workbench. Wires ran from some of the components to test meters and a few ran into Allan’s laptop computer. They had made significant progress so far. Allan had found the sonic frequency that the lethal part of the weapon used. Kaylee was working on a jammer that would block the deadly sounds emitted by the device.
Allan’s laptop was analyzing some of the other signals produced by the device. All the while playing tracks from his huge music library. The small computer had impressed Kaylee. While the interface was kind of old fashioned, it was capable of some amazing things. Allan had explained to the mechanic that it was actually a prototype that had been built by his company’s computer division. It used a system that did calculations and memory storage at the quantum level. Giving the laptop the power of a mainframe. Although it was four hundred years old, Kaylee thought that in many ways, it was more powerful than some of the computer hardware available even now.
“Ah ha,” Allan said.
Looking up from her work, Kaylee asked, “What cha’ find?”
“See this transducer here?”
“Look at the screen when I put some voltage to it, “Allan said as he tapped a key on the computer.
As a graph appeared on the display, Allan suddenly felt incredibly sleepy, his eyelids seemed to drop on their own. Allan quickly pulled the wires from the electronic part on the bench. Blinking his eyes, the sudden sleepiness was gone. Looking over at Kaylee standing next to him, she seemed to be blinking the sleep from her eyes as well.
“Son of a bitch,” Allan exclaimed, “Guess I know what that part does.”
Still a bit groggy, Kaylee was confused, “What happened?”
Pointing to the screen, Allan explained, “See this waveform on the screen?” Kaylee nodded. Continuing, Allan said, “It’s a delta wave, the wave your brain makes when it’s asleep. This thing generates a delta wave that must wipe out all other brain electrical activity and replaces it with a delta wave,” comprehension showed on the mechanics face.
“So with this on, your brain goes ta’ sleep?”
“Yeah. This part was mounted in some shielding so the signal must be directional and fairly short ranged. Otherwise River would have been out too, not just Simon.
Kaylee looked at the older man with some fear showing in her eyes, “This is scary stuff.”
“You aren’t kidding there,” Allan, said looking at the girl, “I think that’s enough for one day on this. Lunch must be almost ready by now.”
Smiling again, Kaylee agreed, “Good idea Ge-ge”
“You know I’m still figuring out all the Chinese around here,” Allan said with a smile.
Kaylee giggled, “Ge-ge means ‘older brother’. Figured you’d like that better than Ba-ba.”
“Ge-ge it is,” Allan laughed, “What’s little sister?”
“Mei-mei” Kaylee replied.
“Ah, I have heard that one floating around the ship. Okay, Mei-mei, lets get some lunch.”
“Sound’s good ta’ me.”
Laughing the pair made their way to the galley.
Right arm in a sling, Mal had made his way to the galley with Inara’s help, much to the protests of Simon about being up so soon after a head injury. Mal had dismissed the young doctor’s sputtering on the grounds that he’s been hit in the head and shot before so he knew what he was doing. Inara assured Simon that she wouldn’t let Mal do anything to hurt himself so Simon had finally relented.
“Somethin’ smells good,” he said entering the room.
“Unlike Ge-ge, I can actually cook,” River said, standing at the cook top as she stirred something in a large wok.
“Thank goodness for that,” Mal said with a chuckle. Turning a bit more serious, he addressed his pilot, “How’s the wing there Albatross?”
“Better,” she replied, “I mostly use the sling but I needed both hands to cook.”
“Just don’t overdo it Mei-mei,” Simon said entering.
River stuck her tongue out at her brother, “Boob,” She said
“Brat,” Simon replied grinning, the exchange eliciting laughter from the others in the room.
“What’s so funny?” Zoë asked as she entered from the direction of the bridge.
“Picking on Simon again,” River replied with a smile.
“Don’t let me interrupt,” Zoë said trying in vain not to smile.
Next to enter was Kaylee and Allan. Kaylee then ran to Mal and giving him a peck on the cheek. “Capn’, Glad ta’ see you up.
“Glad to be up Kaylee.”
Allan took his usual seat at the table, Zoë slid in next to him. Mal looked at his first mate, a slight scowl on his face. Zoë returned a look that said, “Open your mouth and I’ll hurt you Sir.”
Jayne clomped into the room, giving River a strange look. Turning to Allan, he offered the older man his freshly cleaned and polished Gun, “Here ya go Allan, I gotta say this is one fine handgun.”
“Thanks Jayne, It’s always been my favorite,” Allan said.
River moved to the table and set down the large bowl of stir-fry in the center of the table, “Eat up,” she said, sitting next to Jayne.
The food was passed around and the crew began to eat. After a few bites, Allan spoke up, “My complement’s to the chef. This is very good River.” A flurry of agreement came from the group, causing the girl to blush slightly.
Mal cleared his throat, “What’s our ETA to Boros River?”
“Twenty two hours, seventeen minutes, five seconds,” she replied between bites.
Zoë spoke up, “Jacob gave us coordinates for a spot about fifteen miles outside of town. It’s a little valley on property he owns. Plenty of fresh water and easy road access to town for the mule.”
“Good, “ Mal replied, “How’s our fuel?”
Allan replied to this, “Topped off on Aberdeen, even with the full burn getting out of there we should have over half tanks when we hit Boros.”
Mal smiled, Allan had meshed with the crew quite well, the status reports almost automatic. Mal nodded, “Any progress on how our uninvited guests got aboard?” he asked Allan. Zoë had given him a full briefing about Allan’s theory earlier in the day.
“Quite a bit,” Allan answered, ”I haven’t quite figured out how they blocked River reading them but Kaylee and I did find the mechanism that knocked Simon out.”
“How?” the doctor asked.
“It’s a delta wave generator. Powerful enough to override a person’s waking brain waves and put them to sleep.”
Simon was intrigued, the rest mostly looked confused… except for River and Kaylee.
Kaylee spoke up, “Allan triggered it for just a sec an the both of us felt like we hadn’t slept in a month”
“Wasn’t that dangerous?” Inara asked.
“It wasn’t intentional. Luckily it’s pretty short ranged, four, maybe six feet max. Otherwise it would have knocked River out too. The housing seems to focus and shield the signal. Anyone not in the line of fire wouldn’t be affected,” Allan finished.
“So, this machine puts folk ta’ sleep?” Jayne asked.
“Yep,” Kaylee answered. “It’s got a sonic part too. Uses sound ta’ rupture blood vessels and the like. Kill ya messy and painful… Scary.” The young mechanic finished, her usually sunny disposition gone.
“Kill ya… with sound?” Jayne asked surprised.
“Yes,” River said quietly, looking at Jayne “Remember the screams on Ariel?”
“Wuo de ma,” Jayne replied, turning pale.
“Any way to counteract it?” Zoë asked.
“Kaylee’s is working on a jammer for the sonic part. Should have something workable by tomorrow,” Allan answered.
During the conversation, Mal had been deep in thought, considering his options. Looking to his crew he finally spoke, “I’m not likin’ these developments,” he said quietly. First off how did they know we were on Aberdeen. And two, what we gonna do about it.”
“Aberdeen’s been a regular run for us lately Sir,” Zoë interjected, “Might be they got word we were there regular and just waited for us to show.”
“Good point there Zoë. Maybehaps we need to get a bit more random on our jobs.” Mal said, “Once we hit Boros, no one leaves the ship alone, two’s and threes at least. And no leaving the ship unattended, always at least two on board. One o’ those two needs ta’ be either Jayne, Zoë, River, Allan or me.”
Mal continued, ”Figure we’ll stay dirt side two three days tops. Then we’ll go get Allan’s ship and get it runnin' again. Once that’s done we’ll fly both ships to a safe harbor for Allan to leave his ship for a spell. Someplace he can get it overhauled and brought up to snuff.”
“Where’s that Capn’”, Kaylee asked, wondering where they could go for that kind of work.
A smile splitting his face, Mal replied, “I was thinking of leavin' Free Bird with your Pa’.”
Kaylee’s eyes shot wide, “My Pa’…you mean we’re goin to… I mean I’m goin’…”
“Home, Kaylee, “Mal said cutting her off, “Been near on five years since you joined the crew and we ain’t been back in that time. Besides, way you two keep carryin' on, I figure it’s time Simon there met your folks…” Mal trailed off looking hard at Simon.
Kaylee squealed with delight and jumped up, running to Mal she planted a big kiss on his cheek, “I love my Captain!”
Simon on the other hand didn’t look quite so happy. In fact if a black hole were to suddenly open up next to him he would have willingly jumped in, not that he didn’t love Kaylee, he did with all his heart. But the prospect of meeting her parents filled him with the dread most young men have in that situation.
Kaylee, not noticing Simon’s pained expression, hugged her beau and kissed him soundly.
“Ain’t it shiny, Simon? You’ll get to meet, my Ma’ and Pa’, my sisters and my brothers, oh and my cousins too, have a regular family reunion,” pausing for breath, Kaylee continued, “Capn’ I gotta wave my folks, when we gonna be there?”
Chuckling at his mechanics giddiness, Mal thought a minute, “Not sure exactly. Figure three days on Boros, give or take, then, what bout a day to get to Allan’s ship?” Mal said looking at River.
“Approximately,” she said.
“Then maybe two, three days to get it up and runnin'…”
Allan nodded at this.
“Then a four or five day run ta’ get you home,” Mal finished.
Kaylee nodded, “I’ll tell em’ about a week and a half ta’ two weeks.”
“That should work Kaylee,” Mal replied. “We’ll update em’ when we get closer.”
“Thanks Capn’,” Kaylee beamed, “Come on, River you can talk to my Ma too…” Kaylee’s voice trailed off as she dragged her best friend to the bridge and the cortex.
“As for the rest o’ ya, If you don’t have anything to do, best be finding something and get back to work. Ain’t paying you to lollygag around.”
The crew started to scatter. Inara started to collect the dirty dishes. As Zoë started to leave, Mal spoke up.
“Stay a minute would ya Zoë.”
“Sure Sir.” Zoë said sitting back down.
“Everything going alright?”
Zoë suddenly got angry, realizing what Mal was talking about, “I’m FINE, Sir,” she said as her eyes narrowed. Zoë stood to leave while continuing to speak, “and if you don’t have anything else to discuss about ship business, I have work to do.”
“Zoë, sit down… Please?”
Taken aback by Mal’s soft tone of voice Zoë sat back down. Turning to look her friend and Captain in the eye, “What’s on your mind?”
“You and Allan.”
“None of your business Sir,” She said, voice terse.
“Now hear me out here,” Mal began, “Normally this is where I say I’m the Captain and there’s no gorram romances on my boat… But, no one seems to listen to me about that anyway… Not even myself,” Mal said with a twinkle in his eyes as he looked at Inara who was listening quietly while she worked in the kitchen.
“Your point Sir?”
“My point is that I was wrong about tryin to keep you and Wash apart way back when.”
Pausing for a deep breath, Mal continued, “Wash made you a better person. And when… when he died I know a bit of you died too.”
Zoë’s eyes began to look a bit misty. Mal reached his hand to Zoë’s and squeezed. “Now I know you’re starting to have some feelin’s for Allan. And I also know it’s been pretty quick, you only knowin the man for a bit over a week. But… I think he’s a good man, and if, and I mean if, things work out with you two down the road… Well I want you to be happy. And I have to admit ta’ being a bit selfish here you understand… I want the old Zoë back. So if things do work out, you have my blessing to do whatever you decide to do.”
Zoë looked at Mal’s face. Seeing the sincerity there she sniffed back a tear and smiled.
“Thank you Mal”
“Gotta look out for my crew’s well bein.”
“Of course Sir,” Zoë replied still smiling, Now if you will take your own advice, I suggest you let Inara over there take you back to her shuttle and see to your still healing wounds and leave me to runnin the ship.
“Now that sounds like a fine idea. What do you think Bao-bei? ”
“I think it’s a wonderful idea. Thank you for suggesting it Zoë,” Inara said grinning at her friend. Moving to Mal’s side she took his hand and began to lead him from the room.
“Ship’s yours Zoë… Got… Captainy things to do.”
“Scoot,” Zoë laughed.
Once the pair had left the galley, Zoë sighed and spoke out loud to no one, “I got a co-pilot to talk to.” Realizing her heart felt lighter than it had been in a long time, Zoë set off in search of Allan.
Zoë found the subject of her search in the common area, sitting on the sofa, laptop open and running on the coffee table. An electric guitar in his hands, Allan was playing something she couldn’t quite hear. He suddenly stopped, reached over to the small computer and typed something on the keyboard. Just as quickly he went back to playing. Fascinated she continued to watch Allan as he repeated the process several times. Playing for a moment then doing a flurry of typing on the computer.
After five minutes of watching Allan alternately play and type, Zoë stepped down into the room, her boots making noise on the metal treads of the stairs. Looking up from the screen in front of him, Allan saw Zoë enter and smiled.
“That doesn’t look much like work,” Zoë said.
“Hmm? Oh, the guitar… Helps me think.”
“It does?” She said, sitting next to Allan on the sofa.
“Yeah, when I get into a problem, having my hands do something helps. My brain has always been hardwired into my hands so to speak. Whether it was fixing farm machinery when I was a kid or designing electronic circuits, or even designing space ships. I always had to have my hands doing something. That’s why I like hands on work. I’d rather overhaul an old engine than crunch numbers. So when I have to crunch numbers my hands need to do something… So I play.”
“What are you crunching now?” Zoë asked with a small smile.
“Running the algorithms on the signals generated by that device. I’m trying to figure out how it blocked River’s abilities. The program I’m running is pretty complex.”
“You sound like a combination of Kaylee and River when you talk about that.”
“I’ll take that as a complement,” Allan chuckled softly, “River is amazing, she’s the closest thing I’ve ever run across to a walking computer. She does calculations in her head that even I have to use a computer for. And Kaylee, well if she had the education to go with her natural ability… she’d make me look like a ham fisted mule mechanic...”
Allan’s computer beeped and he bent down to look at the screen. Zoë looked as well but couldn’t make heads or tails out of the information on the screen. Allen pushed his reading glasses up on his forehead and rubbed his eyes, “damn,” he muttered.
“What’s wrong?” Zoë inquired.
“Data’s inconclusive… I can’t quite figure it out,” Allan sighed, “Maybe I’ll have River look at it.”
Allan took his glasses off and set them on his computer’s keyboard. Leaning back on the sofa, Allan began picking a tune on his guitar. Zoë Smiled at the sound of the music.
“What’s that one called?” She asked.
“Hmm? Oh sorry, lost in thought again,” Allan said, suddenly noticing how close Zoë was sitting. He could feel the heat from her body on his. Swallowing the sudden lump in his throat, Allan looked into Zoë’s deep brown eyes. He could almost swear there was some kind of connection happening.
“Yes,” She replied, not breaking Allan’s stare.
“About last night…” Allan said quietly, not quite sure what else to say.
“Like I said, I like you,” She said still looking into Allan’s eyes.
“Think I kinda like you too.”
Zoë scooted closer, “I’m glad”
“Shut up and kiss me.”
Allan reached around Zoë’s shoulders and pulled her to him, their lips met deeply, Zoë’s hands moving into his hair, pulling their lips tighter together…
Jumping apart like a couple of teenagers caught making out on the back porch by their parents, the couple looked to the stairs by the infirmary. There on the bottom step, arms crossed with a very smug smile on her face stood the ship’s mechanic.
“Kaylee!” Zoë and Allan shouted in unison.
“Don’t mind lil’ ol’ me, jus go back bout your business.”
Zoë’s reply was a pillow hurled at the cheerful girl. Kaylee ducked it easily.
Looking back at each other Allan and Zoë suddenly burst out in laughter. Zoë was laughing so hard, tears were running down her face. Regaining some composure after a moment, Allan looked to the grinning mechanic, still standing there.
“You need something, Kaylee, or are you just gonna stand there all day?” Allan asked.
“Oh… Yeah, I was wonderin iffin’ I could borrow your computer? I got an idea on how ta’ tie it in ta Serenity fer diagnostics.”
“Sure Kaylee. In fact, once we get back to Free Bird, I’ve got an identical computer there I’ll let you have.”
“Really?” Kaylee squeaked.
“Yep.” Allan replied as Zoë leaned against him, one arm in his lap.
“Shiny, thanks Ge-ge” Kaylee chirped as she scooped up the computer, careful not to drop Allan’s glasses.
“Now scoot there girl,” Zoë ordered, a smile on her lips.
“Aye-aye acting Captain ma’am” Kaylee said with a mocking salute as she turned to leave. Just before she was out of sight, Kaylee called out, “Don’t be doin nothin’ I wouldn’t do!”
“Git!” Zoë yelled. Kaylee got.
Allan turned back to the woman leaning against him. Zoë looked at him expectantly. Alan gazed into her eyes. Thinking about how intoxicating they were.
“Now where were we?” Zoë asked her voice husky.
“Somewhere about here, “ Allan replied as his lips met Zoë’s. After a moment, they parted with a smile.
“Schoolboy Heart,” Allan said
“What?” Zoë asked confused, still leaning against Allan.
“The name of the song I was playing.”
Zoë smiled, “I’d like to hear it,” she said as she shifted so Allan could play his guitar better.
Allan smiled and turned up his amplifier a little bit. Hitting one chord to check the tuning. Satisfied it was set properly he looked to Zoë again.
“This was written about five hundred years ago by a man named Jimmy Buffett. My Grandfather actually met him once at one of his last concerts. Loved his music, passed some of that along to me. I always felt this song was kind of like my theme song… Well later in my life anyway.
Allan began the intro, the music flowing from the strings. Then he began to sing in his gravelly but not unpleasant voice…
“I’ve got a schoolboy heart… a novelist’s eye… stout sailors legs and a license to fly… I come with nomad feet, and wanderin toes…”
As Allan continued to sing, Zoë listened intently to the lyrics. When Allan finished she said, “You’re right, that song fits you perfectly.”
Smiling widely at Zoë, Allan couldn’t believe how this woman he’d only known for a little over a week affected him. Looking again deep into Zoë’s eyes he immediately knew what song he would play for her next.
Adjusting the guitar in his lap, Allan began the first chords of Van Morrison’s “Brown Eyed Girl”.
Throughout the afternoon, Allan serenaded Zoë until it was time for Allan to start making dinner for the crew. Standing, he offered his hand. Zoë stood, took Allan’s hand and they made their way to the galley. Huge grins stuck on their faces, Allan intent on making something extra special for his brown eyed girl.
Friday, June 20, 2008 8:41 AM
Saturday, June 21, 2008 6:14 AM
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