Smells Like Wash
Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Cat and Zoe have a heart to heart about Zoe's dead Husband.


She walked the deck of Serenity, something she did often, not wanting to sleep for fear faces from her past would haunt her. Mal would wake when she left, but after two months of it, even he just let her go. Cat couldn't blame him. Woman should want to sleep with her man, but for some reason, all she saw was his face and the horror that came from the fact she knew he wasn't dead.

The ship was quiet save for Jayne's snores and Batha's purr, both soothing in their own right, though together made a strange symphony with the engines. One sound though was out of place, a sobbing that seemed to be coming from the common room, and Cat decided to detour from her normal walk above to investigate the lower level.

She walked silently down the stairs, normally loud with anyone else's feet made quiet as her genetically enhanced senses took over. A scent of sandalwood and gunpowder filled her nose, but also the smells of many battles before. There on the couch as Cat lowered down the stairs was Zoe, her dark face buried in her hands.

She took a moment to look up at Cat, before wiping her eyes like the warrior woman had been caught doing something she shouldn't, but as she sat down on the seat next to Zo, neither said anything. Finally, Cat smiled. "Bit late to be down here all by yourself."

"Could say the same thing to you and you got someone to go to."

"I know. Wanna talk about it?" Cat looked at her, not really one for touching conversations. Being around her husband for the years she was hadn't taught her much about human contact, but if you wanted to know anything about gambling, cheating at gambling, or gambling on the fact you'd be caught cheating, she was your girl.

"I miss him. Every's really bad at night and now with Kitty rooming with me, well, I don't like waking her and River's on the bridge."

"Zoe, I don't understand what it's like to lose someone that way. Hell, I have a hard enough time not missing Ski and he's a phone call away. Wish there was something I could've done."

"Even you and your beast couldn't have reached that spear in time, Cat. It was just his time to go. Doesn't hurt any less."

"Stories they tell...I can't see you with someone like that. All goofy and with a sense of humor...hell, the boys and I always figured you'd be with someone that could best you."

"First time I met him, I wanted to hit him. Had this red mustache and God, Cat, it looked so stupid, like some critter 'sided to poop on his lip. It just hung there all creepy." Zoe shuttered lost in a memory as Cat remembered when Mal had done the same during the war. Decided not to shave for about two weeks. It ended when she told him under no circumstances would she sleep with anything that resembled a bear. Within an hour, he was clean.

"So what made you fall for him?"

"Damn man finally shaved that thing and Captain left me here with him on Serenity one night when he and Jayne went looking for work. We watched something on the Cortex and before I knew it, we were kissing like a pair of teenagers. Three months later, Mal ordered me not to marry him, so I did. First and only order I ever disobeyed. Felt good to."

Cat chuckled. "Now that look I would have loved to see. When Malcolm Reynolds found out his beloved second disobeyed him."

"He wasn't too pleased, but learned to live with my decision and with Wash and I being together. Mal's a hard ass, but he's calmed down a bit from the war."

"I've noticed. He gets along with Inara pretty well. They tend to do a lot of talking."

"She and he...well, before you came back, crew had a pool as to when they'd get together. Ain't her he's not wanting. Just don't like what she does."

"Companioning is hard on a marriage or a relationship. Don't think I could do it, but then I'm damn close balancing a lover and a husband."

"Which one do you love, Cat? Which one can't you live without?" Zo shook her head. "Wash was one in a million and I loved him more than anything else in the world. Had he asked me I would have walked away from all of this without complaint."

"Ya, but he never asked." She stood, not answering who he was. Instead, her hand fell to Zoe's.

"You once told me that you could still smell the war on my skin. Was that true?" The warrior woman wiped the tears from her eyes to look at the green ones of Cat.

"Just because something is gone, doesn't mean it doesn't stay with you." Cat took a deep breath. "You smell of cheap cologne, cotten mixed with rayon and brightly colored dyes, of the pilot's chair and of plastic."

"All those you could have known from things laying around my room or this ship, Cat, but good try at making me feel better." She smiled halfheartedly and oved her hand. Standing, the beautiful red head looked back down.

"Very true. By the way, your husband loved to kiss the back of your neck, right behind your left ear, where your hair line stops."

Zoe turned to her in surprise. "How'd you?"

"Because that's where I smell those things the strongest. Zoe, you know that I don't lie, even to make one feel better. His smell lingers on you as well as the war. It's those things, those smells that we take with us forever and what make us who we are."

"Thank you." She whispered, fresh tears replacing the red streaks on her face. Cat nodded and began to walk away. Zoe called after her. "Cat, what do you smell of?"

The eyes glowed slightly in the darkness of the shadows she seemed so good at disappearing into and a harsh voice whispered back. "Cigarettes, Gunpowder, and Pain."


Thursday, October 15, 2009 1:44 AM


Ouch, 'Cigarettes, Gunpowder and Pain'. Oddly enough that sounds sorrier than Zoe's overwhelming feelings of loss. All her memories of Wash are happy ones. Cat certainly has a unique way of cheering folk up but glad she found Zoe and spoke to her. Anything to lessen the pain has to be a good thing. Ali D :~)
"You can't take the sky from me!"

Friday, October 16, 2009 6:01 AM


Oh, so sad! But I think I do feel sorrier for Cat - she can't help but smell the pain on others, and worse because she knows she reeks of it. No wonder she finds it hard to be around people some time. Can we have a little sequel/continuation where Mal finds out? Not so much on the smell part, but that she spoke to Zoe?

Friday, October 16, 2009 11:47 AM



Sunday, October 18, 2009 6:01 AM


Wonderfully dramatic. Now to read the sequel.


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