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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
An AU in which Zoe sacrifices her life for Wash... and he must learn to move on.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1089 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
"It's noon," Kate said.
"Yep," Mal replied.
"Why didn't someone wake me?"
"We been fendin' for ourselves in the kitchen for years, one more mornin' ain't gonna make that much difference. An' I reckon you needed the sleep." Mal half-smiled. "Just remember, no matter what Hannah says, I ain't responsible for any additions to her vocabulary."
"Did you teach that sweet, innocent little girl naughty words?" Kate grinned.
"Not me," Mal said defensively.
"Eh, she's heard 'em all before anyway. Where is my little hell-beast?" Kate asked, chuckling.
"Helpin' her Daddy fly the boat," Mal grinned. "You gotta go have a gander. Kaylee took some caps, but this is somethin' you gotta see for yourself."
Hannah was sitting on Wash's chair, looking very serious. She was steering erratically, but the ship wasn't doing anything out of the ordinary. Wash was standing beside her, beaming down at her like a fool.
"Whatcha doin', baby girl?" Kate asked, after watching her for a while.
"Hannah fly!" she squealed.
Wash grinned at Kate. "A-U-T-O-P-I-L-O-T," he spelled. "Could she possibly be any cuter?"
"When she wants something," Kate laughed. "You're a natural at this."
"The whole Daddy thing. I mean, your bedtime story knocked me out cold."
"Zoe wanted kids," he told her. "I guess I did, too, but I knew it wouldn't work out. Zoe would have either lost the baby, or been killed herself, because it wasn't in her nature to stand by while Mal went on jobs. Being pregnant out to there would have slowed her down. I didn't want to risk losing her, for all it's worth now."
"I didn't want kids," Kate smiled. "Michael either. I was gonna be a chef in a big, fancy Core restaurant, and he was gonna teach. Hannah had other ideas, and once I knew she was there, wasn't a thing in the 'verse could've made me give her up." She paused. "There's an old, old song, back from Earth-that-was, that says 'Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.'" The more I think about it, the more I realize that's the way of the 'verse. Wash?"
"Don't let Mal get you shot, okay? Hannah can't - I can't handle her losing another daddy."
"'Member how I was sayin' I don't ask for much?" She put on her best puppydog eyes.
Mal sighed. "What do you want now?"
"Christmas!" Kaylee said, smiling that big bright smile that melted his heart every time, no matter what. "We gotta start a tradition; we got a li'l baby on the ship, an' we gotta make Christmas special for her, don'tcha think? I mean, she's the first, but it ain't for certain she'll be the only..."
Mal looked at her closely. "Kaywinnit Lee Tam. Are you suggestin' what I think you're suggestin'?"
"Christmas?" She said meekly.
"You are, aren'tcha?" Mal grinned. "'Nara said you was lookin' all glowy."
"We ain't told no one yet," Kaylee smiled shyly. "'Cept Kate. And I reckon River's got it sussed, so Jayne prob'ly knows too..."
"So what you're sayin' is everyone on this boat knows what's goin' on before the Captain?" he teased. "I'm happy for you, mei-mei. You're gonna make a fine momma." He gave her a big hug and kissed the top of her head.
"Who are ya, an' what've ya done with our real Cap'n?" she giggled.
"You're healing well," Simon told Jayne, changing the dressing on his stomach.
"Yer bein' real big 'bout this, doc," Jayne said.
Simon gave him a puzzled look.
"I know I ain't the kinda man you'd'a chose fer River," Jayne continued. "She's yer baby sister an' all, an' you want the best for 'er. I know I ain't the best. I ain't even close. But I'll treat her good, an' always do right by her, I swear it. I love her like I never thought I'd love no one," he confided, his ears turning slightly pink with embarrassment.
Simon was quiet for a moment. "If you so much as wrong her once -"
"I know about the spoon," Jayne snorted. "Yer real inventive, I'll give ya that. An', I know ya mean it. If it happens, I'll know I done deserved it."
"Look at you!" Kate squealed. "You're a real ballerina! What do you say to Auntie River?"
"Tank you," Hannah grinned. "More dancin'?"
"She's very good," River told Kate.
Inara smiled. "Considering she's two years old, she's excellent. Not a prodigy, by any means, but what she lacks in natural ability she makes up for with enthusiasm."
"We can't all be prodigies like River here," Kaylee grinned. "Out here in the black, enthusiasm's all that counts."
"Go show dada," Hannah said, tugging on her mother's hand.
"Definitely," Kate agreed. "But he and Uncle Mal aren't back yet, so you'll have to wait a bit, sweetie. Why don't you go practice some more?"
"Dance!" Hannah sang. "Dance Auntie River, dance Auntie 'Nara! Mama, Auntie Kaylee, dance! Dance, dance, dance!"
Kate and Inara exchanged a look. "How about you dance with Auntie River and Auntie Kaylee, sweetie," Inara suggested. "Your mommy and I have something we need to go do."
"Why do I trust you?" Wash demanded. "Always, me with the trusting, and you with the making me wonder why? Why do I always trust you?"
"You can't think I knew this would end like this," Mal laughed, humorless. "You were the one with the big, scary gun."
"This isn't the first job that landed me tied back to back with you," Wash pointed out. "Either you have a very weird fetish that I want to know absolutely nothing about, or you've got the absolute worst judgement a person could possibly have and not be dead yet."
"They'll come for us," Mal told him.
"Who?" Wash snorted. "Zoe's gone, Jayne's laid up. There isn't any cavalry waiting to ride over the hills, Mal."
Mal was quiet, and Wash immediately regretted saying it.
"See what I mean?" Inara asked, brandishing a very nasty looking crossbow.
"Absolutely no faith," Kate agreed. "At least you kept your word," she said to Wash. "No holes in you I can see. Foolish of me not to mention all the other bad things that could have happened."
"Kate," Mal said, surprised. "That's a gun."
"Is it?" she gasped, her eyes wide. "Oh my!"
"That must be why all those men back there ended up full of bolts and bullets," Inara teased, an innocent look on her face. "It all makes sense now!" She began to work on the knots binding their captain to their pilot.
"Here, let me," Kate offered. "I have a toddler; undoing knots in things that shouldn't be knotted is a specialty."
"Did we at least get paid?" Inara asked, knowing the answer. She hoped Mal couldn't see the twinkle in her eye. Not yet.
"We did," Mal replied, "but we didn't get to keep it."
"Hey, 'Nara," Kate grinned. "Wonder what's in that really heavy, not at all suspicious looking duffel we took off the boss?"
"I don't wonder," Inara told her. "I know. It's our 40% plus the 15% that we relieved that crew of. And the Star of the East."
"We underestimated them," Wash laughed, rubbing his wrists where the rope had started to chafe.
"We?" Mal cocked an eyebrow.
Wash grinned. "Well, you."
Mal tried to look innocent. "I ain't the one said they weren't comin'."
"No man left behind," Inara told him. "Isn't that the way of it?" He nodded, a look of pure admiration on his face.
"I get why you're here," he said to her, "but why Kate?"
"When you have a child," Kate explained, "you'll realize they are your world, and you will do whatever it takes to make sure nothing shatters their world. Hannah'd be royally pissed if I came back without her Daddy and her Uncle Mal," She grinned."I'm a fair deadly shot, but I only take up arms when absolutely necessary, Captain, so kindly keep me out of whatever plans your brain is workin' on now."
"Daddy and Uncle Mal brought home Christmas," River told the cherubic little girl, who was twirling around the kitchen in a pink leotard and tutu.
"San' Claws?" Hannah asked solemnly. "Where San' Claws?"
River considered for a moment the idea of dispelling the myths surrounding St. Nicholas, but she remembered the magic Christmas had held for her when she was that size, and changed her mind. "He has to stay hidden until Christmas eve," she told her. "Then while we're all in our beds, sleeping, like good aunties and uncles and mommies and daddies and little girls, Santa Claus will sneak in through the airlock and leave presents under the tree. Assuming we can find a suitable Pseudotsuga menziesii for the occasion."
"We got so much to do to get ready," Kaylee said dreamily. "We gotta decorate, an' get presents for everyone. Oh! And cookies! Wouldn't be Christmas without cookies and milk for Santa."
"Wan' cookie," Hannah told her. "Please?"
"Ain't it excitin'?" Kaylee grinned at her cousin. "You can have a cookie soon as we make 'em."
"Cookie?" Hannah asked her mother, who dug around in the cupboards and found a box of protein crackers.
"Close enough," she shrugged, handing a few to the toddler. "You know, I was dreading Christmas this year," Kate answered Kaylee. "But I think it's going to be a happy one. Last Christmas I was a new widow, all alone in the world except for Hannah and my hundan brother, and this year I've got more family than I can handle."
"Who do ya think we can get to dress up as S-A-N-T-A?" Kaylee wondered aloud. "Gotta be Simon or Wash. Mal's too much of a grinch, and Jayne... well, Jayne's scary, an' Santa ain't s'posed to make babies cry."
"That's a role that seems right up Wash's alley," Inara commented. "He is very jolly."
"Don't you go puttin' that crap on me," Jayne grumbled. "I ain't a girl."
"Love unca Jayne," Hannah told him, smearing his face with a tube of lipstick Inara had passed down to her. "Jayne pretty."
"I ain't pretty," he muttered. "Only reason I ain't gettin' gone is 'cause I got a gut wound makes it difficult to get around, an' yer momma promised me cake if I watch ya a while."
"Where San-ta?" Hannah asked.
"Reckon if I tell ya that, yer ma and yer aunts'll have my head," he answered. "He ain't here, yet. He only comes around at Christmas time, an' only for good li'l girls an' boys. The kind that don't put make-up on their big, scary uncles."
Her chin began to wobble dangerously. Jayne was a big man, and could handle just about anything, but when it came to women crying, he was helpless as a puppy.
"All right," he sighed. "Have at it."
"Hannah love," she said happily, drawing on his face with the lipstick. "So pretty."
"I dunno how you females do that," he commented. "Go from tears one minute to giggles the next. Startin' to think ain't a one of ya right in the head."
hundan - bastard
Pseudotsuga menziesii - Douglas fir
Wednesday, December 28, 2005 7:01 PM
Friday, December 30, 2005 10:59 AM
Friday, December 30, 2005 8:40 PM
Wednesday, January 04, 2006 8:43 AM
Sunday, March 26, 2006 8:20 AM
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