Tales of the Rangers - Chapter 5
Friday, June 4, 2010

Zoe begins to fill Wash in on what he's missed and Maxine Confronts Zoe about her husband.


Disclaimer: Joss, Fox, Universal Own em’. (Except for Maxine and the rest of my OC's. they're mine) I’m just playing. No money being made.


Continuing on the storyline I started with “New Blood ” and “Guardians” Read those first so you will know who is who and what has happened in the 'Verse.

Warning: This storyline includes 'gasp' fem slash. It won't be graphic but I know some are offended by any depiction of homosexuality. If you don't like this kind of thing... stop reading right now.

AN: Takes place both in the future and a month and a half post Guardians.


Tales of the Rangers


Chapter Five


Xue interrupted the story thanks to a sudden kicking of her bladder by her unborn daughter. “Husband? A hand please...”

Scott grinned and stood up. Offering a hand to his wife so she could struggle to her feet. Xue was rather petite and being pregnant took a lot out of her. She had been the same way with Hobie.

Hobie himself was disappointed in the interruption of his story but understood that his Momma had to potty a lot cause of the baby inside her.

As Xue retreated to the bathroom a knock was heard at the front door.

Scot moved quickly to the window. His hand reaching for his pistol hanging from the coat rack near the door before he saw who it was. With a smile he opened the door, “Come on in.”

“Grampa!” cried Hobie as he saw who had entered.

Wash scooped his grandson into his arms, “How ya doin' squirt?”

“Shiny, Grampa!”

Wash smiled and produced a new toy dino for Hobie's already huge collection before turning to Scott, “Where's Xue?”

“Head,” the young father replied as Wash began tickling his grandson Hobie howled with laughter.

“How's she doing?” he asked.

“Better. Mood swings are a little less pronounced... thank God.”

“I heard that, Husband,” Xue snarled as she exited the bathroom.

Scott just grinned, “I love you.”

“Whatever,” Xue growled back.

Wash chuckled.

“Where's Mom?” Xue asked as she kissed her Fathers cheek.

“Got called out,” Wash replied, “Duty calls. So you get me instead.”

Xue nodded with a smile, “She was supposed to bring takeout...”

“Pizza guy should be here in a few minutes,” Wash grinned.

Scott smiled at the look Xue gave her father, “Lei Chan delivers too.”

Wash didn't change his smile, “I hate their Bao.”

“You and your Bao,” Xue grumped as she gingerly lowered herself to the couch, kicking off her flip-flops “Husband... you mind?”

“Work, work, work,” Scott muttered with a smile as he sat on the couch to begin massaging Xue's feet.

“Grampa!” Hobie began, “Momma was just tellin me the story how we found Allissa, Mikey and you.”

“She was huh?” Wash smiled as he sat in Scot's overstuffed recliner. Hobie still in his arms, “Well then we better let her finish.”


Wash quickly dressed. Noting the slight smile on Zoë's face when he pulled on his pale blue with spaceships on it, Hawaiian shirt, “Now I feel human again.”

Zoë nodded, “Need me to cut your hair?”

Wash looked at the long mane he had acquired in the mirror and shook his head, “Think I'll keep it for a while. Damn beard itched to to drive me to distraction though.”

“They didn't let you shave or cut your hair?”

Wash's face darkened, “Most of my fellow prisoners made Niska look like Kaylee. All we had to eat with were plastic spoons. A razor or scissors... never happen.”

“I see,” Zoë replied. Realizing the hell Wash must have gone through the last few years.

“I could use a hair tie though. And you seem to be avoiding how I am suddenly the father to a teenaged girl.”

Zoë stared at him and gave him both barrels, “Her mothers name was Crystal Yue Li...”

Wash suddenly got pale, “Ai-ya...”

“So you do know her,” She said neutrally.

“My... god. We dated in secondary school. I got accepted to flight school. We slept together once. It was my... going away present.”

“Only takes once, Wash.”

“Yeah... but she said she was on the shot!”

Zoë's face grew stern, “I gotta know one thing.”

“What?” Wash asked as his brain tried to process the data that he was truly a father.

“Would you have done right by Xue and her Momma had you known?”

Wash snapped his eyes up, “You know me better than that!” he snapped, “Of course I would!”

Zoë leaned in a kissed Wash on the cheek, “That's all I wanted to hear.”

Wash relaxed. More at the rather chaste kiss than Zoë's acceptance, “What happened to Crystal?”

“Xue said her momma was killed in a hover crash when she was twelve. She lived with her great aunt on Boros after.”

Zoë led Wash out of the passenger head back into the common room, “Xue's got a talent with machinery. Near on as good as Kaylee. Real smart too. But where she excels at is flyin..”

“She... flies?” Wash said as a smile began to creep onto his face. Replacing the lingering shock.

“That's why the Academy wanted her we figure.”


Zoë went on to explain how first they had prevented Jessie from being taken by the blue hands on Meadow and then how they found Xue on the Skyplex.

“So she's a... good pilot?” Wash asked.

“Damn near as good as River. And River's nearly as good as you. Xue's an ace actually. Got six Gunships when we raided the Academy. Since then, she's gotten a frigate with Serenity solo and her and River took out the six Reaver ships that were attacking here.”

“What do you mean, with Serenity?”

“Serenity's been carrying guns since we had our little and short civil war seven months back.”

“Guns?” Wash squeaked.

“She's a gunboat now.”

“I miss all the fun,” Wash chuckled slightly.

He had been so involved with his conversation he didn't realize that Zoë had led him to the galley.

“Wash!” Kaylee cried as she threw herself into his arms. Hugging him fiercely.

Wash staggered back before regaining his balance, “Hey, Kaylee-bear.”

“Omygod, Wash,” Kaylee gushed, “We all thought you was dead. Missed you so much...”

“Missed you guys too,” Wash replied, “Even Jayne.”

A grunt from the big man was about as much as Wash thought he was going to get but Jayne followed it up with a , “Good to have ya' back.”

“Thanks, Jayne.”

“Welcome home, Wash,” said a voice behind him.

Wash turned and his mouth dropped, “Inara?”

The former companion stood on her tiptoes and kissed Wash's cheek, “We missed you a great deal.”

Wash looked at her. Amazed at the transformation. Gone were Inara's fancy dresses. Replaced with stylish and tight tan cargo pants tucked into black boots. A black long sleeved scoop neck shirt and a leather vest not unlike Zoë's. A medium frame automatic hung in a holster at her hip.

“I... wow,” Wash muttered. You're a cop too?” he asked. Noting the badge on Inara's vest. Matching the one on Zoë's shirt.

“Commonwealth Ranger. And yes. I am.”

“Shiny,” Wash grinned.

“Guess we better finish the introductions,” Zoë began, “The redhead in the kitchen is... Maxine Sharpe.”

“We met,” Wash replied. The look Max gave both Zoë and Wash could have melted hull plating. Zoë ignored it for the moment.

“Next to her is Mia Slater. I reckon you met already too.”

“We did,” Wash nodded.

“And over there next to Jayne and River is Sgt. Roberta Williams.”

Wash nodded to the dark skinned woman. She looked like she was a dangerous as Zoë. She was pretty damn good looking too.

River slid out a chair at the table. It was Wash's usual chair.

Simon entered at that moment and kissed Kaylee as he sat next to her.

“That's new...” Wash trailed off as he noticed the couple's wedding bands.

Simon smiled at Wash, “Kaylee and I wed three days ago.”

“Damn,” Wash muttered, “Would have liked to have been there.”

“I'll show you the capture later,” Kaylee smiled.


Mal walked in followed by a blonde haired teenaged boy and Xue, “Zoë? You wanna deal with this?”

“Deal with what, Sir?”

“Caught em' neckin in the bay again...”

The boy turned red and Xue just looked at her feet, “Sorry, Captain.”

Kaylee sighed at Mal's Neanderthal attitude towards Xue and Scott, “Ain't nothing wrong with a little makin out Cap'n.”

Mal just glared at Kaylee before sitting down at the head of the table. Inara slid into her usual spot next to him. She gave Mal a pack on the cheek.

“That's new too,” Wash observed.

“One big happy family,” Kaylee grinned.

“Food's ready,” Max said as she and Mia set bowls of steaming stir fry on the wooden surface of the table.

Mal looked around, “Where's Jess?”

“Feeding the two little ones down in Mia's bunk,” Xue replied, “She'll be up as soon as I finish and can relive her.”

Wash looked at the young woman down the table from him. She looked so much like her mother to his eyes. She looked up and met Wash's eyes. Quickly they went back to her plate. Wash frowned.

After all the food was laid out. Max abruptly left the room. Heading for her and Zoë's bunk.

Zoë sighed and rose to her feet, “Be right back.”

Mal looked like he was developing a migraine. The way he was pinching the bridge of his nose, “Do... what you gotta, Zoë.”

Zoë strode up the hallway after Max.

“Tian,” Wash muttered as he looked down at his plate.


“Max?” Zoë called as she climbed down the ladder into her bunk.

“Go be with your husband,” Max snarled as she sat on the bed.

“Not when you are acting like this,” Zoë said calmly.

“Like what?” Max yelled.

“Like a jealous teenager,” Zoë replied. Trying to remain calm.

“Jealous? Damn right I'm jealous!” Maxine said. Jumping to her feet, “We've been together eight months Zoë. Eight Months! He's back on the ship four hours and you're all over him!”

“I ain't all over him,” Zoë growled, “And me and Wash were together near on three years. Best you be remembering that!”

Max screeched in anger, “Gorramit Zoë! Just... go sleep with your husband! I know you want to!”

“Damn right I do!” Zoë yelled back.

“Fine! Go rut his brains out! I imagine after prison he's pretty hot to trot!”

“Might be!” Zoë snarled back.

The two women stood staring at each other. Breathing heavily.

“Excuse me...”

“What?” both Zoë and Max screamed in unison.

Wash stepped down into Zoë and his. Correction. Zoë and Maxine's bunk. He looked around and noted that it was much the same as he remembered it. Just a few small touches that must have been Max's work, “I like what you've done with the place...”

Max crossed her arms and glared at Wash, “What do you want?”

“I want Zoë to be happy. And the way it's looking. That's not happening. And it's all my fault.”

“Wash...” Zoë trailed off.

“You thought I was dead. I get that. Zoë... I'm glad you found someone else to make you happy. I wouldn't have wanted you to have mourned me forever.”

“I was...” Zoë whispered.

“But Maxine changed that,” Wash replied.



Maxine looked at her boots “I just don't...”

Wash looked at Maxine, “Please don't let me come between you two.”

“Wash...” Zoë began to say again.

“I'm not your husband anymore,” Wash said, cutting her off, “I'm dead and buried. All that's left is prisoner seven eight three. And prisoner seven eight three, isn't Zoë Washburn's husband.”

“Yes you are,” Maxine whispered.

“In here maybe,” Wash replied. Putting his hand to his heart, “But in the real world. Hoban Washburn is no more.”

“That's go-see, Wash,” Zoë said, “You're alive. Here and as real as the rest of us. What I buried was someone's science experiment that thought it was you. Broke my heart I'll admit but now you're here and you're home.”

“My home was always where you were Zoë...”

“I...” Zoë trailed off.

Emotionally spent, Maxine slumped onto the bed. Taking advantage Wash moved quickly and sat next to the redhead and put an arm around her shoulders, “We're both really lucky,” he said after a moment.

“Shenme?” Max replied.

“Because we've both been loved by Zoë.”

Zoë sighed and stood in front of the pair of them, “What am I gonna do with you two?”

“No rutting clue,” Max muttered.

Wash noticed how miserable Maxine looked at the moment, “I'll leave the pair of you alone,” he said after a moment.

“Wash. You don't have to...”

I foresee makeup sex in a minute or three. And as much as I'd like to watch....”

“Wash!” Zoë exclaimed.

Wash smiled. The smile that had always made her go weak in the knees. It still did. Maxine noticed it as well.

“Thought I was the only one who could do that to her...”

Wash grinned, “You know about that spot behind her knees?”

“What spot behind her knees?” Maxine asked.

“Husband...” Zoë growled.

Wash was grinning now, “Hey... gotta give Max here some pointers.”

“I don't need no ruttin pointers,” Maxine replied.

“Suggestions then...”

“That's better,” Maxine agreed. She was smiling now.

Wash kissed Maxine in the cheek, “Take care of her tonight and maybe we can start out fresh in the morning?”

Max looked over at Wash and nodded her head, “Deal.”

Wash nodded and stood. He looked at Max first and she nodded. Wash kissed Zoë tenderly and he felt her tremble. Breaking the kiss, Wash turned back to Max, “Don't do anything I wouldn't do.”

“Would you get out of here, Husband,” Zoë smiled.

“Aye, aye, Ma'am,” Wash mock saluted. “Besides. I have to go and talk to my daughter.”

“Best be doin that. Wouldn't hurt to talk to Scott some too.”

“Yes... the 'she's my little girl and I'm the father' talk. Can I borrow a shotgun, Dear?”

Max giggled slightly and Zoë rolled her eyes, “Scott is a good kid. He's been treating Xue right and he's been through a bad stretch too. Hauled him outta a brothel on Whitefall. Boy was snatched by slavers and since he's so handsome, sold him to the brothel to service sly men.”

“Wangbadan de biaozi...”

“Go talk with Xue, Wash.”

“I'll do that. And I'll see you both in the morning.”

“We'll talk then, Wash,” Max agreed.

“Okay. To quote Kaylee, 'have good sex',” Wash grinned.

“Go!” Zoë commanded. Wash snapped her another sloppy salute and climbed back out of the bunk.

As soon as the door closed Zoë looked back at Maxine and sighed, “I'm sorry.”

Max stood and pulled her into her arms, “So am I.”


Max silenced her with a kiss. She felt Zoë tremble, “Glad I can still do that to you,” Max said after their lips parted.

“Always, Ai-ren.”

“He's not bad looking...”

“Huh?” Zoë asked.

“You know. For a man. I can see why you fell for him.”

“You can huh?” Zoë replied.

“I can. And what is this he said about the back of your knees?” Maxine asked seductively.

“Oh, go-se,” Zoë whispered as Max pulled her onto the bed.


Wash went in search of the daughter that until today. He didn't know he had. A daughter. Wash shook his head. Damn. Zoë had just talked him into perhaps having a baby before he was taken. Now he was the father of a teenager, “I'm so humped...” he muttered.

Xue wasn't in the passenger dorms like she said she would be. Mia told him that Xue had wanted some time alone. Passing back through the galley. Wash found River waiting there for him.

“Saved you a plate,” she said.

Wash sat down in front of the remaining place sitting. A steaming plate of stir fry sat there, “Is this... real food?”

River nodded, “Maxine is a wonderful cook.”

Wash picked up chopsticks and fumbled with them slightly. It had been a while since he had eaten with anything but a spoon. After taking the first mouthful, his eyes rolled back in rapture. After swallowing Wash grinned at River, “This is ambrosia...”

“It must seem like it.”

“You have no idea,” Wash replied as he took another bite, “God...”

River giggled and Wash grinned back, “Seems nice to hear you sounding so... normal.”

“Still a long way from that,” River replied, “But I am better. Jayne helps.”

Wash nearly choked on his food. After coughing a moment. He was able to speak, “So you and... Jayne?”

River nodded, “And Kaylee and Simon are together as you have noticed.”

“Looks like Mal finally got his head out of his ass with Inara too.” Wash observed.

“Needed help. Kaylee and I gave them the right... push.”

“What kind of push?” Wash asked, a slight grin on his face.

“A bottle of Saki and locking them in Mal's bunk.”

Wash laughed, “That would work I guess.”

“It did.”

Wash paused as he ate, “How did... how did I... I mean. How did the other Wash die?”

River's face clouded over for just a moment before she recovered, “Let me tell you about Miranda...”




Friday, June 4, 2010 1:21 PM


This is the kinda stuff I would pay money to read.. Its GUUUUUUD.. WOW. This would make GREAT TV.. Drama, action, mystery, and sexual tension.. like Greys Anatomy, Burn Notice, Castle, and Survivor with a dash of Harlequin romance for flavor..

YES!!! Please, may we have another??


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