Masks - Part XXIX
Saturday, May 1, 2010

Maya. Post-BDM. Home stretch, now, folks, with reunions and private conversations. NEW CHAPTER


The shuttle had barely been winched in before Hank was out of his seat and down the stairs, almost colliding with his son as he barrelled along the catwalk.

“Mama!” Ben yelled as the door opened, tackling his mother even while she had hold of the release, and not looking like he was ever going to let go.

“Hey, honey,” Zoe said, ruffling his hair. “You know, I think you’ve grown.”

“Have I?”

“Mmn.” She went down onto her heels to look into his coffee-coloured face. “You been good for your daddy?”


“Only mostly?”

Ben did the foot roll favoured by virtually all the Serenity children. “Most of it was Bethie’s fault.”

Zoe had to smile, running her fingertips across his cheek. “I’m sure it was.” She looked up at Hank, hanging back a little, and stood up. “Hey.”

“Hey.” Hank was studying her closely.

“All here,” she whispered, understanding everything.

“Good. Honestly though, can’t I let you go anywhere without me but you get into trouble?” He managed to get an impressive amount of annoyance into his tone.

“Better not let me go anywhere on my own again.”

“Don’t intend on it.” He swept her into his arms, crushing her lips with his. For a long moment there was no other sound.

Mal, leaning on the bulkhead, cleared his throat. Then again when they showed no signs of parting. And a third time.

“You wanna get that seen to, Mal,” Hank said, pulling away only just enough to speak.

“Can I remind you I’m captain? And some of us actually want to get off?”

“Hush, Mal,” Inara admonished. “They missed each other.”

“You gonna be like this when we drop you back on Lazarus? You gonna eat Sam’s face off too?”

“Mal, really. You can be so crude. I don’t know how Freya puts up with you.”

“True love, ‘Nara. True love.”

“It must be. And yes, I probably will show a great deal of affection when I get home. And you probably won’t want to watch.”

He shuddered theatrically. “Thanks for sharing, ‘Nara.”

“You’re welcome.”

River slipped behind the pilot and first mate. “Cherokee wants to dock,” she said simply, disappearing through the doorway and heading for the bridge.

“She does?” Hank looked over his shoulder at her retreating figure, then back at his wife. “Honey, I think I’d better … knowing what River can be like after a fight …”

Zoe nodded. “Go. I’ll keep myself warm for you.”

“Zoe, please!” Mal shook his head, while Phoebe giggled.

Hank grinned and ran out.

“Let’s see if you can keep your hands off Freya when you see her,” Inara remarked, her voice holding just the right amount of acid.

“Like I keep telling folk, I'm captain. I don’t have to obey the rules.”

“Mmn.” Inara rubbed her hands together. “Right. I think, after the activities of the past few hours, we all need a nap.” She looked pointedly at the twins, one eyebrow raised.

Mal waited for Val, or more likely Phoebe, to complain, but they surprised him.

“Yes, Aunt ‘Nara,” Val said simply.

“Not going to see your young man?” Mal teased gently.

“No.” Val lifted her head. “And he’s not my young man.”

Inara glared at him again. “I think this is probably a discussion for later. After you’ve arranged for our luggage to be brought back from the Empress.”

This time Phoebe did open her mouth to protest, but Val squeezed her arm hard, and she merely yelped.

“What do I look like, a bellhop?” Mal asked.

“It must be the uniform,” Inara said, sweeping out of the shuttle and heading towards the passenger quarters, collecting the girls on the way.

“Ain't I gonna get the last word at all?” Mal called, leaning out of the airlock.

“Probably not, sir,” Zoe said, manoeuvring past him, Ben’s hand held tightly in hers.

Mal glared at her, about to make a sharp retort, but Hank’s voice echoed through the bay.

“Cherokee’s here.”


“Yes!” Kaylee pumped her fist into the air as the main array showed power was flowing again. Mullings had obviously fixed the short, and as she watched the needles continued their rise. Above her the lights flickered on, dimmed, then came back full force. “That’s my girl!”

Cho laughed. “Won’t your own ship get jealous?” he asked, smiling as he wiped the sweat from his face.

“Hell, no. Serenity knows I'm just on loan for a while, and I’ll be coming home soon.” There was a slight hitch in her voice.

The engineer had noticed. “You’re missing your family?”

Her face fell. “A bit. Knowing they’re so close, like I can almost touch ‘em …”

“You could always go back. Leave the rest to us.”

She shook her head, renewed determination shining from every pore. “Nope. My daddy’d tan my hide if he found out I’d left a job half done. And I’d let him.”

Cho put one arm around her shoulders and squeezed gently. “Ms Kaylee, you ever decide to leave that husband o’yours, you let me know.”

She blushed prettily, even under the grime. Then she grinned. “Come on. Still got work to do.”


Mal pulled the door to one side.

“You know, we’ve got to stop meeting like this,” Jez said, leaning nonchalantly on the opening.

“You think folks are gonna talk?”

“Bound to.”

“Hmmn. I guess I’ll have to try and stay out of trouble, then.”

“Unlikely.” She smiled, but there was something hidden within it, something Mal recognised all too easily. Guilt.

“So what happened?” he asked gently. “Harrington give you any trouble?” Yes, that was it. He saw it flash behind her eyes.

“No, no trouble.”

“So he’s not gonna come back and bite me in the ass.”

“Difficult, seeing as he’s in some thousands of pieces.”

He couldn’t hold it in any longer. “Jez, what the diyu did you do?”

It hadn’t been hard. What Marcel didn’t know about explosives could probably be written on the back of a protein packet, in quite big letters. And they always carried some. Explosives, that is. For emergencies.

“How big?” he asked, his fingers already itching.

“Enough to set off the self-destruct.”

He looked around the Interceptor. “This thing got one?”

Jez’s lips lifted slightly. “Haven’t you read the alerts? It’s a new directive from the Alliance – all new ships are to have one. In case they fall into the wrong hands.”

“You mean Browncoats.”

“Brown, black, sky-blue pink … it doesn’t matter the colour of their jackets,” Jez said, deliberately misunderstanding. “They just don’t want people to have something they’ve not paid for.”

“Now that’s just mean.” He was mentally configuring something as he spoke. “Do you want it to look like an accident?”

Jez was silent for a moment. “Might not be a bad idea,” she said slowly. “As he pointed out, someone’s going to come looking for the good General at some point. I’d hate to think they might get the idea it was foul play.”

Marcel grinned. “Then better not use the self-destruct. I can rig something on top of the fuel cells. It’ll look like the system flared.”

“What about the rail gun rounds? Won’t they be noticeable?”

“Not with what I plan. And if they do, well, pirates use them too.” He glanced at the body still lying against the wall, and looked away just as quickly. “Best you get him into the pilot’s seat, though. Just in case.”

“Shiny.” She stepped to the corpse, bending down to take hold of the ankles.

“You … uh … want me to give you a hand?”

“No.” She smiled a little for him. “But thanks. You just do your bit. I’ll deal with this.”

He knew she could tell he was immensely relieved. “Just take me a couple of minutes.”

She nodded, tugging Harrington away from the bulkhead. His head hit the floor, squelching slightly, and Marcel hurried out to get his tools.

“… which is exactly what we did,” Jez said, back on Serenity.

“So you blew it up,” Mal mused.

“Figured it was the best way to go.” She shrugged. “No evidence means no Alliance, and I think we’re both going to be glad about that.”

“I suppose it’s occurred to you that there’s folks onboard the Empress think the Interceptor was the root of all their problems.”

“Now, isn’t that a shame?” A smile, more real that the last, warmed her face.

“I kinda think so. Considering how much those ships go for. I could probably have found a buyer.”

“What, like Badger? He’d have sold you and the Interceptor without even blinking, you know that.”

He sighed hugely. “I know. Just hate to see all that cold, hard cashey-money going up in flames.”

“No flames in space, Mal. Or didn’t you know that?”

“I think I've heard something to that end, yeah.” He looked past her into the interior of Cherokee. “By the way, where’s my wife?”

“In my sickbay.”

Something stirred in Mal’s gut, tightening. “Is she okay?”

“A bit woozy, to tell the truth. At the moment she’s sitting with Saffron.”

Mal’s eyes widened. “You mean that puo foo really is on board? I thought it was just Zoe having a mental episode.”

Jez laughed. “Not quite. Right now the erstwhile Mrs Reynolds is cursing every God, the doc with her, Ida … although I think only the latter’s likely to space her.”

“Considering how Frey feels, I wouldn’t count on it.” He adjusted his gunbelt. “Better go see, I guess.”

“Not that you’re concerned at all about your wife.”

“Oh, no. Never that.” He smiled and followed her across to Cherokee.


At the doorway to the small infirmary, stocked almost as well as his own, Mal waited for a moment just to watch Freya. She was dabbing at Saffron’s forehead with a wet cloth, but from the slight valley between her eyebrows he was guessing she was sending soothing thoughts too. “Frey,” he said softly.

She looked up, love lighting her features and warming him through. “Mal.” She got to her feet and in a moment they were no more than a breath apart.

He tugged her into his arms, holding her as tightly as he could, trying to blend their bodies together until they were physically one person, and she let him. Ignoring the pain in her leg and wrists, she closed her eyes and simply luxuriated in his proximity, her mind reaching out and finding his, wrapping herself around and through him, stating her love more firmly than any words could ever do.

“Missed you,” he said simply into her ear.

“Me too.”

“Nearly lost you.”


“I don’t know which is worse,” Saffron ground out, her face red from the contraction raging through her. “This or you two.”

“Saffron.” Mal half-turned to look at the woman lying on medbed. “I’d ask how things were going with you, but I figure I can tell.”

“You!” Saffron growled out. “This is all your fault!”

Mal shook his head. “Hey, nothing to do with me,” he insisted.

“Yes it is!” Saffron could manage an amazing amount of volume, considering she was in a great deal of pain, although that probably helped. “You poked around in my life, and that meant he was able to …” She had to stop, her face screwing up.

“Try and relax,” the man next to her said.

“You gorram relax!”

Ida, her long hair caught up in its usual messy bun, tutted. “Dr Barkin, I really think this isn’t helping.”

“No, it gorram isn’t,” Saffron agreed before spitting a long stream of expletives at him, then flopping back as the contraction ended. “You said this baby was coming soon,” she gasped.

Dr Barkin shrugged. “Honestly, I don’t have that much experience with them. And from what I can remember of that particular rotation, they tend to arrive in their own sweet time.”

“Do I even want to know what’s going on?” Mal asked. “Not that seeing you in pain isn’t fun.”


“It’s a long story,” Freya put in. “I don’t feel in the mood to go into it right now.” She let Mal’s strength bolster her.

“I'm sure it can wait,” Mal said, holding her close.

“And I need to get my patient to the hospital on the Empress,” Barkin said firmly.

“Not a good idea.” Mal shook his head. “Your liner ain’t exactly got all her power up and running yet, so you’re probably best staying on board Cherokee, at least for a while. In case of, you know, complications.”

“Complications?” Saffron glared at him.

“Saffron, you manage to make my life complicated, and I hardly ever see you.”

Qu ni made!”

“Really. Is that any way to talk in front of your child?”

Jiao ni shen haizi mei pigu yan!” Her face screwed up as another wave built.

“Apparently it is.”

Barkin lifted the sheet covering Saffron from the hips down. “Don’t push yet.”

“Oh, shut up!”

Mal sighed. “You know, I don’t think my delicate ears can take much more of this.” He looked into Freya’s eyes. “You wanna come home?”

Freya glanced at Ida, who waved her hands in the universal sign for ‘you go, I’ve got all this under control’. Well, at least someone did. She turned back to her husband. “Permission to come aboard?”

“Give me a few secs to toss River’s gear outta the bunk …” He almost yelped as she pinched him. “Permission granted.”

“I think I’m gonna be sick,” Jez commented from the doorway.

“You get her to tell you about the time I walked in on her and Noah,” Ida said, preparing a hypo. “Now that really did make me want to throw up.”

Jez glared at her, but she laughed unrepentently.


Mal and Freya made their way back to Serenity, arms around each other, and as they stepped into her cargo bay they heard voices above them.

“Honey, can I say something about it being alright for some?” Hank said from the catwalk.

Zoe, standing next to him, shook her head. “Probably not a good idea at the moment.”

“Then I can hold it in reserve?”

“For best, I think. Only make sure I’m around before you say it.”


“You can be replaced, you know,” Mal said, feigning irritability.

“No, I can’t,” Zoe said firmly.

“Well, okay, no. But River flies as well as your … whatever he is. Superior on a good day.”

“He’s my husband. The Shepherd said so. For better or worse.” With an admirably straight face she went on, “And if I thought you meant it, sir, we’d be having words.”

“And by words you mean the kind that leave me bleeding?”

“Exactly, sir.”

“Then I suppose I’ll let it slide. For now.”

A commotion in the common area had their combined attention. Ethan and Jesse burst through, running full pelt towards their mother, yelling her name.

She went down onto her heels so she could hug them tightly.

“Mama! Missed you!” Ethan said, tangling his hands in her shirt as always.

“Oh, I missed you too.”

“Not going anywhere,” he stated firmly. “Ever again.”

“”I wouldn’t be at all surprised,” Freya said, chuckling.

“Did you bring us pressies?” Jesse wanted to know, relaxing into the familiar embrace.

The chuckle grew into a laugh, echoed by the rest of Serenity’s adults.

“That sounds like Bethie talking,” Mal said, ruffling his daughter’s hair.

“Not me,” said the little Tam in person, framed in the doorway, a strand of her long honey-coloured hair wrapped around her finger. “All Jesse’s idea.”

“Well, there might be something for good children,” Freya admitted, smiling at her.

“S’nice.” Except Bethie couldn’t manage one back. In fact, the little girl looked so despondent that Freya felt her heart stop.

“Come here,” she called.

Bethie needed no more prompting. She jumped through the hatch and ran to join the others. “Momma’s not thinking about us,” she complained, burrowing into Freya’s arms.

“Of course she is.”

“Nope. Thinking about renewal packs and insulators.”

Freya glanced up at Mal, seeing the indulgent expression on his face, the twitch of his lips. “Look deeper, Bethie,” she suggested.

“Shouldn’t peek.”

“I'm giving you permission.”

“’Kay.” The very young psychic opened up her mind, and her eyes went wide. “There we are,” she whispered in awe.

“Of course.” Freya smiled. “Your Momma’s always thinking of you on some level. She has to concentrate on something else at the moment, but you’re still with her.”

“Oh.” Bethie grinned.

“Talking of which, where’s your sister and David Gabriel?” Mal asked.

“With Uncle Jayne.” she giggled. “He’s telling stories.”

“Stories, huh? Hope they’re appropriate.”

“No,” Bethie admitted, giggling again, obviously feeling much better. The giggle turned into a laugh. “Uncle Mal.”

“What, short stub?”

“Auntie Frey can’t get up.”

“She can’t?” He looked at his wife. “You can’t?”

“Um … no.” For some reason her legs didn’t seem to want to work. “I think I might need a hand.”

“Frey, one of these days you’ll be the death of me,” he complained, reaching down and gently lifting her to her feet. “Feeling dizzy?”

“A little,” Freya admitted.

“Then lean on me. And I'm taking you to the infirmary to see Simon.”

“Come on,” Bethie said, seeing Ethan and Jesse’s worried faced and feeling their anxiety. “Uncle Jayne’s just getting to the blood.”

Mal sighed.


“Concussion,” Simon said simply, peering into her eyes as she perched on the counter. “I’m presuming someone hit you.”

“That was my fault,” Flynn put in from the medbed. “Sorry, Frey.”

“You hit my wife?” Mal asked sharply.

“No. That was Aiden. But I … if I hadn’t …” He stopped, then added quietly, “Sorry.”

“Yeah, well.” Mal took a breath. “At least she didn’t get shot.”

“No, that’s your modus operandi,” Simon said.

“If’n you’re waiting for me to ask what you mean, you’ll die an old man ‘fore you do.”

Freya tried to move away from the pen light Simon was using to check her pupils. “Do you have to?” she asked peevishly.

“Yes. Do you have a headache?”

“A little.”

“I’d take that to mean a lot,” Mal said quietly, putting his hand on her thigh. “Otherwise she’d’ve said no.”

“Oddly enough, I’d had sufficient experience of dealing with this crew to be able to interpret, captain.” Simon always did become a lot more formal when he was examining a patient, an occupational hazard Mal had always thought. “I can give you an analgesic if you’d –”

“No,” Freya said quickly, then smiled to take the sting out of her interruption. “Sorry, Simon, but I can deal with it. I was going to meditate for a while anyway.”

“Which means my clothes are gonna smell like perfume again,” Mal complained, but with no heat.

“You know you love it really.”


“Well, you know the routine,” Simon said, finally switching off the tiny torch and looking at Mal. “Don’t let her sleep yet, and if the headache gets worse, or there’s double vision, call me straight away.”

“The double vision she’ll probably keep quiet, but I promise I’ll keep her awake.”

“And none of that, either,” the young doctor said sharply. “Although why I even bother saying that to you two, or anyone else on this crew …”

“You’re just pissed because Kaylee’s not back.”

“I know she’s busy.” Simon turned his blue eyes on his captain. “It’s just you’ve all seen your spouses. I haven’t.”

“I can get River to pilot you across, if you like,” Mal suggested.

Simon considered it for a moment, then shook his head. “No. I don’t want to interrupt her. I know what she’s like when she’s got her head in an engine. I just … a man can miss his wife, you know.”

Mal’s own expression softened. “I know, Simon.”

“Anyway, can I go back to our bunk now?” Freya asked. “I’d like to start on that meditating. Saffron really damaged my calm.”

“Saffron?” Simon’s ears perked up. “Really?”

“Yes.” Freya slid from the counter. “I’ll tell you all about it while I lean on you.”


“I think what my wife’s trying to do, obviously too subtle for you, is to give me and Flynn time to talk,” Mal interjected. “Alone.”

“Oh. Yes. Of course.” Simon put his shoulder under Freya’s arm. “Oh, and by the way, since you haven’t asked … Flynn’s going to be okay.”

“Doc, I figured if you hadn’t said, it was pretty much a sure thing.”

They exchanged a look.

“Stop it,” Freya said soothingly. “You know you both like each other really.”

“Frey, ai ren, that’s a vicious rumour put about by people who want to clean out the septic vat for the foreseeable.” Mal grinned.

“Oh, come on.” Simon sighed. “Let’s get you upstairs. Although it would probably be easier if you stayed in one of the passenger dorms.”

“My bunk,” Freya said firmly.

“Fine, fine. Just don’t shout at me if I drop you.”

“As if I would.”

Mal waited until Freya and Simon had headed up the stairs before turning to the young man on the medbed.

“I thought we had this conversation,” Flynn said, shifting uncomfortably.

“That was when you might’ve been dying. This one’s more of a …”

“Telling off?”

“Something like that.”

“Mal, I apologised. I can’t do anything else.” Flynn was getting increasingly agitated. “If I could turn back the clock and make it that I never took that niou se job I would, but –”

“Not that kinda telling off.”

“Oh.” Flynn’s eyebrows drew together. “What kind, then?”

Mal pulled the stool up, settling himself wearily on it. He was tired, not only physically – not having slept right since Freya went on board that damn liner – but also mentally, knowing he was paying the bill for all that adrenalin earlier. Must be getting old, he thought. Time was I could fight all night, sleep for an hour then fight again.

Not old, zhang fu. He heard Freya’s voice in his mind, somewhat amused from the tone. Not yet.

“Um … Mal?”

Mal refocused. “Right.” He took a breath, Freya still laughing somewhere between his ears. “This conversation is gonna be more along the lines of what you plan on doing with your life.”

Flynn’s face took on a sullen expression Mal recognised, mainly from Jayne. “It’s my life, Mal. You don’t have any say in what I do.”

“Nope, that’s true. It’s not like I can make you become a Shepherd or anything, although I’ve known a few of them weren’t that bad. But you have to make a decision. Stay on the course you’re on, or maybe make a stand for something better.”

“I don’t want to talk about this.” He crossed his arms.

“Hey, if you want me to call Frey back down here, I will. But it won’t be pretty. For you, that is.” Mal glanced upwards towards the bunks. “Because the only reason I'm the one talking to you right now is because she ain’t up to par.”

Flynn closed his eyes briefly and exhaled heavily. “Mal, I am what I am. A mercenary. A gunhand. That’s all.”

“Nope. Maybe there was a time I’d’ve agreed with you, but not now, not seeing how River has changed Jayne. That’s all I thought he was once, a man good with his fists and his guns, but not much else. It took a while, but I came to see the better person he is inside.” Mal leaned forward. “But you tell anyone I said that, and I’ll finish what that bomb started.”

Flynn had to smile. “I won’t. But –”

“But nothing. You can be what you want, Flynn. Nothing to stop you. And you know damn well your Ma would be behind whatever you decided.”

“My Ma.” The young man shook his head ruefully. “That’s what all this is about, isn’t it?”

“Well, maybe. But you wanted me to tell her something when you thought you were about to head off to that great whorehouse in the sky. In fact, if I recall, you wanted me to tell her you were sorry. Remember?”

“No.” It was obvious he did, though, as his next words were, “I thought I was dying.”

“So you weren’t really sorry?”

“No. Yes.” He pressed his lips tightly together. “Gorramit, don’t go putting words into my mouth!”

“Someone has to. And if it ain't gonna be you …”

His head falling back, Flynn sighed mightily. “You want me to talk to her.”

“That’s about the shape of it.”

“She won’t want to talk to me.”

“You asked her?”

“I know her.”

“Not well enough.” Mal looked at the boy in front of him, hiding inside the shell of a man. “She killed Harrington, do you know that?”

Flynn nodded. “I figured she had.”

“Maybe you should ask her why.” He slid from the stool, his booted feet slapping to the deck.

“That’s it?” Flynn sounded surprised.

“For now. I reckon Simon’s gonna tell me off any moment for keeping you from your rest.”

“I was about to mention it, yes,” the doctor said from the doorway. “And how did you know I was here?”

Mal turned to look at him, his lips curling. “That perfume you’re wearing. It’s pretty heavy stuff.”

Simon gazed at him. “It’s aftershave. Kaylee bought it for me.”

“Nice of you to wear it considering she ain't here.”

“I like it.”


“Really.” Simon smiled slightly. “And I wouldn’t worry. From the incense Freya was lighting when I left her, you’re not going to feel left out.”


She was sitting on the floor, naked, her skin glowing in the soft light, eyes closed as she spoke the ancient words, meaning something to her if nobody else. In front of her was the small statue holding the incense stick, but his gaze was fixed firmly on the flame tattoo on her back, the riot of colours reaching out to him across the small bunk. One day he’d make her tell him about it, about the man who’d saved her life all those years ago, saved her sanity, but only when she was ready.

He waited until she’d finished her final mantra, opening her eyes and staring at the incense still drifting smoke. “Frey.”

She smiled, more relaxed than she had been in days. “Hi.” Holding out her hand she let him help her to her feet.

His eyes slipped to the large bruise on her thigh, angry with purple and black. “Rut it …” he murmured without thought.

“It’s okay.” She touched his cheek, her fingers brushing the slight stubble pressing through his skin. “It’s going to go away.”

“I know, but –”

“And Harrington isn’t going to hurt anyone ever again.”

He pulled her into his arms, feeling her naked body tight against him, his hands caressing her tattoo. “Hwoon dahn – he deserved everything he got.”

“Well, I don’t think Saffron’s going to be losing any sleep over his demise.” She snuggled closer, ignoring the sharp imprint of his suspenders and buttons.

“I figure that’s why you didn’t tell me. Back on Boros, when we got wed.” He had to smile, a slight chuckle running through his frame. “About Saffron being his daughter.”

“I didn’t want you to worry about it.”

“Hmmn.” His right hand wandered down her spine. “Still say I'm captain, and as such I've a notion I should be given all the facts and allowed to make up my own mind.”

“And what would you have done?” She leaned back enough to look into his face. “Mal, Serenity Valley is over. Long done. And you’ve moved on.”


“Yes, finally.” She smiled even as her breath hitched. “And if you keep doing that, I'm never going to get to talk to Jez.” Like you want me to, she thought.

“Do what?”

“Uh … that.” Her eyes half-closed.

“Oh, this?”

“Y … yes.”

“Frey, honey, the kids are all in with Jayne, River’s taking a turn on the bridge, everyone else is otherwise occupied … I'm thinking I might take advantage of the situation.”

“Do you?” She managed to get enough focus back to gaze into his blue eyes, their softness reaching out to envelop her.

“I am. And we ain't going anywhere for a few hours, not ‘til Kaylee’s sure the Empress is back up and running. I figure Jez can wait a while.”


“Yep. And as your captain, I'm giving you a direct order. ‘Sides, the doc said I was to keep you awake …”

“Oh, well, in that case …” She allowed her eyelids to fall, moving her hips against his crotch and making him groan.

to be continued


Sunday, May 2, 2010 2:07 AM



Great as usual Jane. The reunions were spot on. As was Ben blaming his mischief on Bethie. Some good fluff as this winds down.

Sunday, May 2, 2010 2:07 AM


There is a child being born, Dr. Barkin hasn't had much experience and Simon isn't elbows deep in Saffron?? Who thinks THAT wouldn't be some great interaction?? Just an aside, not a critique. The M/I, M/Z, M/S, M/F interaction imagery is so believable. Great chapter.. Maya is a true favorite. Thank You..

Yes PLEASE!!! May we have another???

Sunday, May 2, 2010 2:09 AM


Haha!!.. Look at the time stamp Brian.. that is almost impossible.. TIED for first!!!

Sunday, May 2, 2010 6:22 AM


Ouch. Poor Freya's headache. But a good homecoming/ wind-down.

Sunday, May 2, 2010 3:31 PM


Such a great chapter. Your conversations are wonderful and your characters are so alive I just want to shake hands with them. Hope Freya gets over her headache. :)

Monday, August 30, 2010 10:09 AM


Yay, love having Mal and Frey back together again! Lots of goodness in this chapter, just loved it all! Ali D :~)
"You can't take the sky from me!"


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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!]