Saturday, November 22, 2008

Sometimes a word's meaning depends on where you look from. Mal and Jayne have a discussion


DISCLAIMER: Joss owns it all. We just get to play here some times.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ “Oh, one further addendum. That’s the last time you get to call me whore.”

"Absolutely. Never again." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The word hung in the air once again. It stood between them as impenetrable as a piece of core containment sheeting. Mal standing on one side in angry frustration, Inara on the other in dignified resignation. With a swish of silk the sloe-eyed Companion turned and walked away from the table and through the doorway.

“Ya know Mal, I never understood your problem there. If a classy woman like Inara was interested in me I’d sure as hell…..” Jayne waved his coffee cup at the departing Companion.

“Your mouth is talkin on something I got no interest in hearin right now Jayne. Ya might wanna look to that.”

“I was only sayin……”

“Sayin what Jayne? That you’d be just shiny with havin your woman bein a whore?”

“No Mal. I’m sayin whorin’s a job,n most a the whores I know are hard workin n reasonably honest. And to my way a thinking they not only provide a community service, they help keep things law abiding….cuts down on violence.”

“That you gotta explain further Jayne cause right now you sound a mite like River.”

“See Mal it’s this away. When folks like us show up. Ya know needin some trim n such. Well if there ain’t no whores we gotta start lookin to the local respectable wimmin for a bit a entertainment. Then ya just know the local menfolk are gonna get territorial and start gettin defensive like an all sorts a extra violence is gonna happen. Just natural it would.”

“Well Jayne it appears you have an insight I seem ta lack on the profession a whorein.” Mal shook his head in weary resignation.

Jayne mentally inventoried the scars on his mind and body and the coin paid for each one. Coin paid for the use of his body. “Yeah Mal, I guess I do.”


I always felt Jayne had a much different outlook than Mal. This particular conversation has been rattling around in my brainpan for awhile.

Please leave feedback. Good, bad or indifferent it helps me grow.

This is my first post since mom died and I am just trying to get back into the swing of things.


Saturday, November 22, 2008 11:47 PM


You know, I agree with you. And Jayne, while being 'simple' (as in only really being interested - as far as we know - in guns, food and sex) certainly isn't generally stupid (and we forgive him Ariel). Otherwise he wouldn't still be alive. I can see his pov being that his job is no different - selling his skills - than Inara is when selling her body. Unfortunately I don't see Mal ever coming around to agreeing, and their sniping is the only way they communicate, otherwise both of them would have to face up to their true feelings. Someone should lock them in the hold for a month!

I liked this a lot, and I'm glad to see you back.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 3:09 AM


I always saw Jayne's viewpoint towards Inara and whoring pretty much as you describe in this fic but where I feel Mal's opinion differs isn't because he has no respect for whores or that he looks down on them and their profession. I think what sticks in his craw with Inara is 'the lie of it'. Inara has been coached and schooled into raising her chosen profession above simply sexually servicing men (and women) to providing other services wherein she is more companion to the client.

Mal just sees it as her selling herself when to him she is worth so much more. He considers her better than that and doesn't feel she needs to stoop to whoring herself out in order to be an independent woman, no matter the semantics. Just my opinion. Also I don't see Jayne as thick or stupid but fixed on and preoccupied with his own priorities. A bit like having tunnel vision. Others may think he does see anything outside of that viewpoint but Jayne is astute enough to be aware of what's on the periphery, it's how he has survived so long. Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:34 AM


I agree with Amdobell. I think Mal thinks so highly of Inara that he can't stand to see her sell herself to less worthy men and it makes him crazy. She gets respect from society for her actions of demeaning herself while his own mother probably brought him up for a very different society and a very different point of view. So the part of him trained by his own upbringing and love for his mother is at war with his current culture's view of women as respectable companions. But he has no use or love for Alliance culture and can't reconcile the difference between his two world views. Love the fic and loved the points of view.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 5:09 AM


I have to agree with both Jane0904, Katesfriend and Amodobell all.

First of all, Jayne, he's a practical person and astute in matters that apply to him. "Whores" are practical and part of his 'Verse.

Mal, oh Mal. His upbringing and view of the Alliance color his relationship with Inara. He's put her on such a pedestal and is so at war with himself with her "selling" herself when she's worth so much more in his opinion.

They do need to be locked in a shuttle for a week or so. Mal needs to see Inara as a woman and person and Inara, she has to see Mal as more than a "petty thief" and some one who challenges her whole world view.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 9:39 AM


I like this too, and definitely something that Mal needed to hear, even if it comes from Jayne, who has a more practical approach to Inara's profession, "Community Service" love that!

Your time line is a little fuzzy here, but I think Mal got a fairly good opportunity to espouse his views on Inara's profession in Shindig and I think Inara understands them by the time Heart of Gold rolls around, especially when we see her reaction to him and Nandi, she got the message loud and clear, unfortunately the hard way, but hey that’s life.

And, I think one could argue that he already sees her as an "independent women " and that's obviously an important factor in his attraction to her because Mal's persona is essentially all about Independence and freedom, which is of course why he lets her go in the first place, when she feels the necessity to break FREE, because of something she is hiding, complicated, yes.

IMHO, Mal's and Inara's story is about acceptance and unconditional love, and that is the "love story" Joss wanted to tell because it provides opportunity to develop both character’s humanity. Sadly it was ended prematurely.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 9:49 AM


Thanks for all the remarks. I am glad to see this stirring up so much discussion. I personally have never seen Jayne as stupid either.

In matters of the body Jayne is much more forthright and accepting of his needs and desires. His body is part of his arsenal and he takes care of it accordingly. Mal is all sorts of repressed and tied into his head in this area, with a much more provincial upbringing.

As much as I love Inara I am afraid they could never get past all the hurtful things Mal has said and thought.

Thanks to all for the welcome back.

gentle journey,

Monday, November 24, 2008 7:55 AM


Sorry I'm late coming to this party, but I very much enjoyed reading it! Was just the Firefly fix I needed for the day! :D Welcome back!


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