Saturday, February 5, 2011

Maya. Way-post BDM. Another in my occasional forays into future-fic, and just for fun. Caleb Cobb has admirers, and Jayne can't see why he doesn't do something about it. STANDALONE (and yes, I know I should be working on Indigo ... but you know how it is, something gets into your brain, makes a nest ...)


Caleb Cobb stretched, and half a dozen young women watching from the far side of the compound almost fainted. Seventeen years old, he had the height of his father, as well as his blue eyes, but a lither frame, taking more from his mother than just her wavy hair. Still, he worked out a lot with the other Serenity boys, and he had muscles on that body that made female hearts beat a little faster.

Especially when he was half-naked, sweat stained and totally unaware of the effect he was having.

His Pa sighed. “You sure he’s mine?”

River hit Jayne on the arm. “Of course he is.”

Spending time on Jerusalem while Kaylee did a few ‘minor’ jobs that entailed taking half the engine apart, the crew had taken the opportunity of earning a few credits to support their savings, and Caleb had offered to chop enough wood on the ranch where they had negotiated a landing spot to keep the family going for most of the winter. The family had four daughters of marriageable age, and they had friends, and ... well, only having six in his own personal entourage was less than usual.

“Only he ain’t even looking at ‘em.”

“What do you expect?” she asked, turning her huge dark eyes on her husband. “That he leers at them? Propositions them? Strips off entirely and struts around buck naked?”

Jayne squirmed internally as he always did when she was angry with him. “No. But actually knowing they’re there would be a start.”

Caleb had wandered to the water butt and was now tipping bucketfuls over his head, the resulting soaking making his pants stick to his well-defined thighs, and the girls were now having to fan each other.

“He’s a good boy.”

“You sure he ain’t sly?”

This time the punch was much harder, and he knew it was going to leave a bruise.

“And if he was? Would you love him any the less?”

“No, a’course not. He’s a Cobb.”

“Then why worry?”

“Because he’s a Cobb!”

River knew her husband could never be described as an intellectual, and was inclined to revert to his baseline of obtuse when occasion demanded, so she wasn’t annoyed with him. “Jayne, he isn’t sly. He likes girls.” She didn’t add that he had quite a collection of distinctly non-sly pornography earmarked on his private Cortex link, but only because she didn’t want Jayne asking his son for a look.

“Then how come he don’t do something?”

“He will,” River assured him, patting his hand. “When he’s ready.”

“It’s disgusting,” Grace Cobb said, her nose wrinkling. At twelve she was almost the spitting image of her mother at that age (something her Uncle Simon often commented on), but she had the attitude of a Cobb, down to a proficiency with any weapon she laid her hands on, and a tendency to swear at inappropriate times, as well as a store of dirty jokes that she was keeping in reserve. “He should be gorram whupped for it.”

The Reynolds twins, Matthew and Katya, grinned.

“He don't know,” Matt said. “He gets all embarrassed talking around girls.”

“S’not what they want to do,” Kat put in. “Talking is the last thing on their minds.”

Jayne glared at his wife. “See? Even this pair think the same!”

River crossed her hands over her swollen belly. “Caleb is our son. And I seem to recall you telling me you were at least his age when you had your first full sexual experience, and if that’s –”

“River!” He glanced in anguish at his daughter.

“Momma’s told me all about it,” Grace said, waving it away. “When she told me about the birds and the bees.” She considered briefly. “Although why it’s called the birds and bees when what people actually do is –”

“That’s it.” Jayne pulled his shoulders back and put on his most intimidating look. “Nobody’s gonna say another word.”

“What, never?” Kat asked. “’Cause I don’t think Matt’s gonna be able to handle that.” Her blue eyes sparkled.

“Me?” Her brother bristled, all twelve years taking advantage of his quarter inch height difference. “I can be quiet – it’s you who can’t keep your mouth shut.”

“I so can.”



“Can’t.” He grinned. “’Sides, I know you’re glad Cal’s a virgin, considering the way you go mooning around after him.”

His sister gaped. “That ain’t true!”




Kat opened her mouth to differ again, but Jayne got there first.

“Gorramit!” he thundered. “Can’t you talk about anything else?”

The twins looked at him.

“Nope,” Matt admitted.

“Bored,” Kat added.

“Then go and find your mother,” River advised. “Before Jayne explodes.”

“Messy,” Kat said.

“I’m not cleaning it up,” Matt grimaced, looking exactly like his own father.

“If he explodes he’ll probably take us all with him,” his sister went on.

“Then you had better ask Freya to suggest to Cal's audience that he’s unavailable,” River said, slipping her arm through her husband’s. “Otherwise there are going to be paternal visitors with shotguns.”

“Huh,” Grace said. “Cal wouldn’t touch ‘em with a barge pole.”

“Still, I’d rather like my son to still be with us when we leave.” She blinked at them. “Now, please.”

Kat sighed. “Fine.” She grabbed her brother by the wrist. “Come on. Let’s go find Mama. Then we can go annoy Ethan and Bethie.”

“What?” He unfocused, then grinned. “Oh. Right. Shiny.” He allowed his sister to tug him away, but asked over his shoulder, “You coming?”

Grace sighed, but followed, sure there was going to be more fun where they were going than staying with her parents.

“Huh?” Jayne looked at River.

“They’re getting ... close.” She smiled.

“Simon know?”

“Not yet.”

He smiled despite himself. “Can I go tell him?”


“Aw, Riv ...”

She distracted him by taking his hand and putting it on her belly to feel their unborn child kick, and she looked entirely too smug as his face dissolved into wonder. “Give Grace a year or too,” she advised. “Then you can start worrying about the boys she starts being interested in.”

“I somehow think Matt’s gonna have something to say about that,” Jayne said, a smirk sketching across his lips.

River didn’t allow her surprise to show, but it warmed her through that he could still amaze her. “My Jayne recognises it?”

“I know the signs.”

“Are you going to speak to Mal?”

He looked up into her eyes, his own full of mischief. “Nah. Be much more fun to watch it all play out.”


Jayne was nonplussed. “What?”

“Beetroot. I feel the urge for beetroot.” She licked her lips and gave him palpitations.

“Just beetroot?”

“And jam.”



He gazed at his wife, glowing in her seventh month, looking no older than the day they did their matching wedding tattoos and said ‘I do’ ... “Strawberry?”


“I’ll see what I can find. Might be I can find some preserve someplace.” He pulled her into his arms, crushing her lips with his. “This keep you going ‘til I get back?”

“More,” she urged, then the warm summer afternoon was quiet again, apart from the dogs barking out in front of the house, the insects buzzing around the corral, and the girls drooling as Caleb Cobb mopped himself down with his t-shirt before striding back towards Serenity, perhaps a little closer to his audience than was strictly necessary, the damp garment thrown provocatively over his bare shoulder.


Saturday, February 5, 2011 8:23 AM


I like Caleb. Such a 'good' boy. hee hee... Great stuff and a good break from Indigo. Of course, now I want peach preserves... LOL


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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!]