Bed and Wine: Part 5
Tuesday, January 3, 2006

Mal and Inara pretend to be newylweds for a job on Shadow. When Mommy and Daddy are away, the kids tend to play....Serenity *spoilers.*


Bed and Wine: Part 5 By Kaynara

Mal and Inara pretend to be married for a job on Shadow. When Mommy and Daddy are away, the kids tend to play....Serenity *spoilers.*

*** Inara stood before the mirror in just her slip. With delicate hands, she lifted the long, mint-green gown from the bed, held it against her body like an old friend. Though no longer a companion, she had a weakness for pretty things. Especially pretty, silken things that clung to her curves, fluted out at the hip and fell down to brush her ankles. She stepped into the skirts, bringing the straps up to tie behind her neck. She dabbed cologne at her throat, slipped her arms into a gold brocaded jacket. “Oh, this is so much better than sweatshirts,” she murmured to her reflection. Heedful of wrinkles, she sat gingerly on the edge of the bed, began to check the contents of her purse. “Ching jin,” she called when she heard the knock. “Hey, you.” She smiled warmly, patted the bed for Kaylee to sit. “Oh, Nara.” Kaylee whistled, stroking a hand down Inara’s full skirt. “You’re pure evil. Cap’n’s gonna hafta sleep with an ice pack on his nethers.” “Kaylee!” “I’m just teasin’.” She lifted the pendant at Inara’s throat, stroked the ruby tear drop between her fingers. “Where’d you get this bit o’ shiny?” “I--it doesn’t really go with the dress.” Inara unclasped the necklace, let it fall into her palm. “Anyway, you shouldn’t poke fun at the poor Captain. Not when he bought you such a lovely present.” “The Cap’n don’t give presents,” Kaylee said, eyes narrowed. “He bought one for you. Only he doesn’t know it yet.” Inara smiled, handed Kaylee a bundle wrapped in tissue paper. “Well? Go on, open it.” “Nara....” Kaylee peeled away the paper, lifted a simple white sundress in eyelet lace. “Do you like it?” Inara led Kaylee to the mirror, held the spaghetti straps even with her shoulders. “I know you prefer pink, but this one caught my eye.” “Oh, Inara.” She pressed the rich fabric against herself. “Now you’ll have to convince the doctor to take you someplace nice.” “Yeah, don’t think we’ve had a proper date since that whole cow in a jar thing.” “Perhaps you can try for something a tad more romantic,” Inara said laughing. “And how ‘bout you? Any romance in the works for your weekend getaway?” “It’s a job, Kaylee. You know how Mal gets about work. He’ll probably forget I’m even there.” “Not likely in that little number.” Kaylee wrapped an arm around Inara’s waist, studying their reflection in the glass. “Seriously, the man ain’t gonna know what hit him.” Inara smiled but her eyes were serious. “I’m not trying to hurt him, Kaylee.” “No.” She smiled wistfully. “You two never did have to try.” *** Mal sighed, shot Inara his exasperated look. It was a look with which she was vaguely familiar. “I don’t care what you say, Mal. I’m not getting into that death trap.” “It ain’t a death trap!” he protested. “It’s a gorram antique!” “Oh, she’s streetworthy,darlin’. Had one exactly like her ‘fore the War.” “That’s sort of what worries me.” “’s just an automobile.” He patted the roof of the vehicle Jem was generous enough to lend. “Anyone with half a brain can drive one.” “So you understand my concern.” Mal smiled darkly. “I asked for a wife, not a comedienne.” “The doors look ready to rust off.” “Hey. This model is a pearl. I used to take mine everywhere as a kid.” “I’m sure you did. Your very own bedroom on wheels.” “Inara.” He took a breath, strove for patience. “If you got so little faith in my driving skills, why don’t you take the helm?” “No, thanks,” she said dryly. “Come now. Don’t tell me you never learned to drive....” “I must have missed that oh-so-shiny experience.” “Yeah.” He took a step closer. “Bet you missed out on a few shiny experiences.” “I--let’s just go.” She slipped past him, sliding into the passenger seat. “Try not to kill us on the way.” “Sure.” He climbed behind the wheel, adjusted his party clothes. “But ‘fore we leave this rock, I’m surely gonna teach you to drive.” He peeled onto the road with a squeal of rubber.

*** The councilman met them at the door, invited them into a sunny, glass-walled foyer that looked out on the gardens. “Devlin and Alicia Parks, I presume.” He shook Mal’s hand, let his fingers linger on Inara’s wrist. “I’m so pleased you could be with us this weekend. As you know, I’m rather new to Shadow. I’m eager to meet young couples like yourself, people who wish to work and raise families here. They do say children are the future.” “Do they say that?” Mal asked, wincing when Inara elbowed him. “The pleasure is all ours, Councilman Blake. You have a lovely home.” She studied their host, a tall, broad-shouldered man well past fifty. His dark hair was streaked with gray and a slim white scar stood out over his eyebrow. “I’m proud to say I designed it myself. Everything’s top of the line, from the entertainment complex to the security staff.” “Did your wife handle all the decorating on her own?” “Alas, Alicia, I’m unmarried. It seems I haven’t your husband’s luck for attracting beautiful women.” Inara smiled, dropped her gaze. “You’re too kind.” “Is that so?” Mal shook his head. “Must be you ain’t lookin’ hard enough. Shadow’s full of lonely widows, Councilor.” “I understand the war was devastating to this planet.” “So I’m told,” Mal agreed. “Dev? Darling.” Inara curved her lips in a smile. “I need some time to dress for dinner.” “Right. Wouldn’t wanna be seen in my daytime pants after the sun goes down.” Mal took her arm, tucked it through his. “Care to point us in the proper direction, Councilor?” *** Kaylee filled the clawfoot tub to the rim, added raspberry bath salts from the canister by the sink. She sunk in slowly, letting her body adjust to the unfamiliar warmth. Kaylee couldn’t remember the last time she’d had a bona fide bath. It was a real luxury to linger in hot water without being interrupted every five minutes. She loved the cap’n to bits, but he didn’t hesitate to haul her outta the shower or anyplace else for the tiniest mechanical mishap. She stretched her feet gloriously in the bubbles. After, as her hair dried in waves around her face, Kaylee tried on the dress. Funny, but she’d never owned anything so clean-lookin’ before, so bright and white and pristine. The door opened and she turned, shamed to be caught playing dress-up. “Wow.” Simon stepped inside slowly, closed the door behind him. “You” “Nara got if for me,” she said, blushing. “She’s a doll, but it’s sorta silly. Where am I gonna wear something this rich?” Simon crossed the room, turned her around and took her face in his hands, used his fingers to brush back her hair. Kaylee closed her eyes, waiting for him to kiss her. “Marry me,” he said quickly. Kaylee opened her eyes. “Shah muh?” “Today, here on Shadow.” “Simon-” “I love you. Be my wife.” “This ain’t you bein’ ironical, is it?” “I don’t want to wait any longer. I’m tired of waiting, tired of putting my life on hold. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from these last years--from you-- it’s that nothing’s certain. We can’t guarantee our future, can’t even guarantee a future. The people we love have a way of slipping through our fingers. I refuse to let that happen with you. You’re the best thing that’s ever happened to me.” “Simon,” she said softly. “I ain’t goin’ nowhere.” “We almost missed out on all this.” He stroked her hair. “I almost missed out on being with you.” “But we lived. We’re here, Simon, you and me.” “And that’s the way I want it. Forever.” Simon knelt on the floor, took her hand between his. “Marry me, Kaylee.” “Oh, jeez. I’m gonna blubber like a baby through the whole damn ceremony.” Simon was smiling. “Is that a yes?” “Hell, yes, Doctor.” He stood up and spun her around the room. *** Inara glanced around the room while Mal tipped the bellhop. The space was small but immaculate, all clean lines and coordinating colors. Aside from a walnut dressing table and striped green chaise, there was a queen-sized brass sleigh bed outfitted all in ivory. She jumped when the door slammed. “Ai ya, can you believe this place?” Mal sat on the edge of the bed, started unlacing his boots. “How many wings you reckon?” “At least three. Maybe more.” “Mrs. Reynolds, I do believe you settled. Especially since our man Blake’s a bachelor.” “Mal, do you honestly think I’m interested in the councilman’s marital status?” “He is a mite old for ya.” “He’s unmarried, Mal. And yet, if you ask me, he’s not the type to sleep alone.” Mal nodded, realizing her intention. “So you wanna go at him sideways, see if we can’t slip a little money into the right hands, ‘haps bribe one of his bedfellows?” “It’s worth a try. If he has a lover, I’m guessing she’ll be at the party this evening.” “You know, Inara, you’ve a decent criminal mind. I’ve half a notion to kiss you.” “Not now, dear.” Inara unzipped her garment bag, removed the black cocktail dress. “The missus has a headache.” She carried her things into the powder room to change.

*** Mal intercepted Inara on the dance floor, put a hand on the small of her back to guide her. “Here.” He pressed a slim brown billfold into her hands. “Slip this down your dress.” “Mal!” But she complied, tucking the wallet casually into her cleavage. “What?” Mal shrugged, ushered her back to their table. “You said that guy with the bow tie grabbed your ass out there. I’m just doin’ what any self-respecting husband oughta, defendin’ the virtue of my nubile new bride.” “Ren si de fo zu.” Her voice rose, arousing several curious stares. “I swear if you call me nubile one more time--” “Alicia. Dev.” The councilman swooped in with two champagne glasses. “I trust nothing’s amiss?” “Everything’s fine, Councilor,” Inara said with an easy smile. “Yep, my bride’s just feelin’ a mite nervy. I been travellin’ for work since our nuptials last month.” Mal put an arm around Inara’s shoulders, gave an affectionate squeeze. “This is sorta our wedding night if you catch my meaning.” “How charming.” Blake gestured subtly, and a waiter appeared at his side. “Nick, see that a bottle of our best champagne finds its way upstairs for the lovely couple.” “Really, that isn’t necessary,” Inara tried, digging her nails into Mal’s back. “Sure it is, cupcake.” Mal grinned at their host, lowered his voice to a conspiring whisper. “She’s just a little eager. Been savin’ herself for me.” Inara nearly choked on her champagne. “Alright there, candy corn?” Mal thumped her back. “Wouldn’t want you hurtin’ yourself now.” “Truly, madame.” Blake lifted Inara’s hand to his lips. “You bestow upon this man a great gift in your innocence. It’s refreshing to meet young people who still value propriety.” “Now, that is something. Didn’t I say the same thing not last week?” Inara curved her lips in a smile, leaned up to kiss Mal’s cheek near the ear. “I’m going to hurt you later,” she murmured. “That a promise?” he whispered. She told herself it was anger, not excitement that had adrenaline pulsing through her body. “Councilor, would you do me the honor of a dance?” she asked, slipping out of Mal’s hold. “Alicia, the honor is all mine.” Blake took her arm. “Don’t worry, Dev. I won’t keep her away long.” “Oh, keep her as long as you like,” Mal muttered, toasting them with his champagne. Inara shot him a death glare as the councilman led her away. *** They told the others they were off to have a date. If she didn’t count the cow fetus, it was sort of the first date, the pair of ‘em dressing all fine, heading into town. If her daddy were alive, he’d laugh, say it was just like his little Kaywinnet, gettin’ hitched on the first date. “Kaylee, wait.” Simon caught her wrist outside the door to the chapel, turned her about to face him. “You’re not changin’ your mind on me, Doctor?” Her smile faltered. “Are ya?” “Kaylee. There isn’t a power in this ‘verse that could stop me from marrying you. Not cannibalistic savages nor psychotic lowlifes nor overprotective ship captains nor crazy man-ape things.” “Mm, I do like when you talk all pretty.” She nuzzled against his neck, wrapping her arms round his waist. It was starting to rain. He drew her under the awning, kissed her lips gently. “I just don’t want you to regret this later. Doing it this way, without your...our friends. I’d understand if you wanted to wait for Inara. Or Mal....” Kaylee grinned, her cheekbones cutting high in her face. “You want the Cap’n to stand up for ya?” “I think he’s more likely to punch me. But I’d risk a broken nose...if you wanted him to give you away or something....” “Aw, that’s kinda sweet and...weird. The Cap’n ain’t my daddy, Simon. I’m a big girl, and I can decide how and when to give myself.” She smiled, kissed him. “And I choose you, Simon Tam.” And he would never understand why she had. But he was certainly grateful. “Well, then.” He threaded his fingers through her. “I think we have a wedding to attend.” “You scared?” “N-no. Of course not.” She raised an eyebrow. “Truth.” “Petrified.” “Me too.” She grinned, kissed him hard on the mouth. “Let’s go get hitched.” *** “Dance with me.” She slipped her hand through his. “And try not to touch me overmuch.” “Anythin’ you say, darlin’.” He held her snugly around the waist, let one hand glide over the bare skin of her back as they moved. “How much did this dress set me back?” “Do you like it?” she whispered near his ear. “Ain’t it a little short?” he asked, running his hands down her sides. “Isn’t that the point?” she countered, slapping them away. “Honey,” he chided. “You’ll make me jealous.” “I guess that’s a risk we’ll have to take. The woman in the red gown. Don’t look!” Mal rolled his eyes. “If I don’t look, how my ‘sposed to see her?” “Just don’t be so obvious about it.” “Sweetheart, subtlety’s my middle name. That Blake’s beloved?” “This week at least. It seems the councilman gets around. Adda Baxter is a runway model.” He snuck a glance at the slim girl, boy-bodied and hipless with ropes of blond hair wrapped around her ears. “Huh, looks kinda young for him.” “Mm, yes. She’ll be twenty-two her next birthday.” “Inara.” He tilted her chin up to meet his eyes. “You’re damn good at reconnaissance. Hell, you’re kinda turnin’ me on here.” “Well, we wouldn’t want that.” She slipped her hands off his shoulders, stepped back. “Go make nice with the rich and richer, Mal.” “And you go get chummy with Adda Baxter.” *** She wanted to do it outside, in spite of the gentle rainfall, the cooling night air. He waited for her in the garden behind the one non-denominational chapel in town. The pastor stood beneath the ivy-wrapped trellis, his wife sitting on the bench as witness. “You want me to marry you today?” the preacher had asked, surprised, when the two young people appeared on his doorstep. “Actually, right now,” Simon had told him. Kaylee just grinned. Now he watched her approach, her white dress luminous against the darkening sky, her feet bare. She had white flowers in her hair, a bouquet of them in her hands. “Hi,” she said when she was beside him. He smiled and took her hand. They stood before the preacher, the mist settling at their feet, the raindrops pearling in their hair. All around him the garden burst with green, flowered with life. The pastor began to speak, but Simon scarcely heard him. He’d been to a dozen weddings back on Osiris. None of the ceremonies felt so natural, so real and honest and true. “Have you prepared your own vows?” the pastor asked. “I’’d like to say something,” Simon told him. “Simon!” Kaylee lowered her voice to a whisper. “Didn’t know we was ‘sposed to write vows....” He smiled and cupped her cheek, pink from the cold. “You’re so beautiful. More so because you don’t realize it.” She smiled, her eyes glistening with wetness. Simon used the pad of his thumb to brush away tears. “You’ve saved me more times than I can count, and in every way that counts. If it weren’t for you, Mal probably would have tossed me out the airlock a few worlds back. Or left me on some desolate moon. Or perhaps shot me.” Kaylee giggled and Simon pressed on, ignoring the curious looks from the pastor and his wife. “You befriended me and my sister, made me laugh when I didn’t think there was anything in the ‘verse worth smiling about. You helped heal her, heal us both actually. I gave up everything I knew to rescue River. I thought I was all alone in the ‘verse. Then I saw a pretty girl on Persephone, a sweet, smiling girl with pigtails and a parasol. You gave me everything, Kaylee. I’m honored you let me into your life, into your heart and your bed and your world. I’m honored you’ve agreed to marry me. As your medic, I think you might need your head examined. But as your soon-to-be husband...well, I’m just honored. I’m gonna do everything in my power to make you happy, Kaylee. You deserve to be happy.” “Simon. That was real sweet.” She brushed tears from the corners of her eyes. “I ain’t any good with speeches. Alls I know is I love you, Simon Tam. Have ever since Canton, when we drank all that Mudder’s Milk and fell asleep on eachother. Or maybe I knew before, back when you wandered on to that derelict transport with your suit prepped wrong. Hell, Simon, I mighta fallen in love the day you sewed up my stomach wound.” Simon smiled, stroked her hair. The pastor was fidgeting uncomfortably now, but neither of them noticed. “I’m real proud to be made Mrs. Simon Tam today. I can’t barely wait to be your wife...and River’s new sister. I never been a wife or a sister before. This feels real right to me. I love you, Simon.” He slipped the simple silver band on her finger and kissed her under the trellis. *** Mal caught Inara’s arm in passing, tugged her into the hallway. “So?” “She seems the loyal sort. Very young and sweet. Innocent.” “Damn.” He rubbed at his temples--the orchestra was giving him a headache. “Well, was a good idea anyway.” “Still, she should be more careful with her things.” Inara slipped off one of her heels, turned the shoe over in her hand. She held up a narrow strip of plastic. “The Councilman’s room key.” “Wait, how’d you get...?” “Girlfriends accompany each other to the rest room, Mal.” Inara rolled her eyes. “I held her purse while she peed.” Mal shook his head, impressed. He tucked the key in his vest pocket. “I’m gonna take a walk around the manor. Think your pretty little feet can handle a few more spins?” “You needn’t worry about me, Mal; this is what I do. Or, did. Try to return the key within the hour, though. I don’t want her getting in trouble with him.” “No, we wouldn’t want that.” “Mal,” she whispered. “Watch your back.” “I would. ‘Cept I can’t seem to quit watchin’ yours.” Their eyes met for a second before he disappeared around the corner. *** Gorrammit, he’d gone and sexed Mal’s sister again. This was bad. Even if Mal and Nara were off playin’ house, the others would squeal on him soon as look at him. ‘Haps Lil’ Kaylee would hesitate, not wantin’ to see him riddled with holes. But the Doc and Zoe--hell, they’d let Mal run him through the engine without shedding a tear. Yep, this was a ruttin’ disaster. Real bad. “Are you hungry?” Ta ma duh, she was awake. Jayne never did know what to say to ‘em after. “I--uh.” Jayne shrugged. “You don’t gotta cook for me or nothin’.” “I just thought you might be worn out after that.” Caroline stroked slender fingers over his bare shoulder. “That kind of zeal burns calories.” “I wasn’t too rough, was I?” She just smiled, cuddled against his chest. “Ain’t nothin’ wrong with what you just did, nor the way you did it.” “I ain’t used to bein’ know, proper ladies.” She rolled on top of him, sat astride his hips. Flesh to flesh. He felt his body respond, dug his fingers into her backside as she began to move. “No offense, Jayne.” She bent her head forward, a curtain of dark hair falling into his face. “But I sure hope you don’t start treating me like a lady.” Hell, he was humped.

*** Kaylee let Simon lead her up the stairs in a daze. At first she’d been disappointed to find all the others in bed. She’d wanted to race home after the ceremony, tell everyone their news. But Simon protested that he’d yet to buy his wife a romantic dinner. Or any meal whatsoever. He took her to an outdoor cafe with real cloth napkins and waxy candle stubs in silver holders. When she shivered in her thin dress, he draped his coat over her shoulders. They sampled the local wines--full bodied reds, dry whites and a sweet blueberry with dessert. After she was giggly and giddy, a brand-new heady sensation inhabiting her brain. She was Mrs. Simon Tam. Mrs. Dr. Tam, I am--hell, she’d married a doctor. The thought was enough to have her tripping in the dark hallway. Simon caught her by the arms, held her up while she laughed. “Careful,” he teased. “I don’t want you spending our wedding night in the infirmary.” “The infirmary could be nice,” she hinted devilishly. Even though they weren’t at their room yet, she wrapped her arms around his neck, kissed him long and slow against the wall. “I love you, Mr. Tam. Hell, I feel like shoutin’ it from the rooftop.” “Keep in mind that the sooner Mal finds out, the sooner he disables me. The honeymoon may be more fun if I’m not in traction.” “What’s traction?” she murmured, her lips sucking at a spot on his throat. “Oh, God, Kaylee.” He slid his hand up her rib cage, spread his fingers to cover her breast. At this rate, they’d never make it to the bedroom. She unbuttoned his shirt, peeled the fabric back from his chest and lowered her mouth to the bare skin. “My husband’s got some nice abs,” she murmured. Her hand slid down to press against the fly of his pants. He groaned, started pushing her dress up over her hips. “You’re incredible. Do you know that, Kaylee? Or should I say Mrs. Tam? Wait. Mrs. Tam’s my mother. Can I still call you Kaylee?” “Call me whatever you like, just take your damn pants off.” He pushed her up against the wall, fisted his hands in her hair while she tugged impatiently at his trousers. They both froze when they heard the thump sound from one of the bedrooms. Kaylee recovered first, pushed her dress down over her hips and crept toward the door. She cocked her head, listening. “Kaylee, maybe we shouldn’t be--” Crack. Someone hit the door again from the inside, harder this time. “Gorramit, girl,” a voice groaned. “Is that....?” Simon whispered. “Yep.” Kaylee slapped a hand over her mouth. “That’s Jayne, alright.” “But that’s Caroline’s room.” “That’s right.” Kaylee was beaming. “Why are you smiling? Mal’s going to shoot him.” Simon pretended to reconsider. “Well, now that I think about it....” “Look on the bright side, Simon.” She started tugging him toward their room. “Cap’n ain’t gonna be able to stay mad at us once he learns Jayne’s sexin’ his sister.” “You know, Kaylee. I think you may be a genius.” “Who am I to argue?” They made love on a bed with fluffy pillows. ***

Around two, Jayne unwound himself from the lithe female body sleeping beside him. Careful not to wake her, he dressed in the dark and closed the door silently behind him. She was a sweet little thing, pretty and eager to please, eager to take pleasure which was just as important by his way of thinking. Wasn’t hardly any fun if they weren’t enjoying it. This lady was mature too, worldly in her own way. Still, it’d never work. Partly ‘cuz Mal would cut off his man parts if he knew. But that wasn’t the main hitch. Jayne just didn’t do relationships. He wasn’t a lover like Wash had been, a kid like Simon. He wasn’t even a sucker like Mal, drawn in by a pair of dark gypsy eyes and a mouth that didn’t hesitate to flap its opinions. Jayne crept down the stairs, grabbed his jacket from the hook by the door. He felt like takin’ a walk. Maybe he’d stroll over to Serenity, poke around for somethin’ to occupy his attentions awhile. There were a lot o’ lonely hours till morning.

*** Inara begged off after her second dance with the Councilor’s nephew. Despite what she’d told Mal, her feet were starting to ache. She slipped into the hall, unbuckled her heels and hid them in a flower pot. Wo de ma, her former house mistress would have killed her for a stunt like that. In all likelihood, her house mistress wouldn’t approve of her lying, stealing or snooping either. But then that was the beauty of being forcibly dismissed. She didn’t have to answer to anyone, not the Guild and certainly not Mal. Mal. Where in the ‘verse was that man? He’d been got over an hour, and the party was beginning to wind down. Even the glitzy rich couldn’t dance all night. In her stockings, she started up the stairs to find him. She found the councilor’s room easily enough. It sat at the end of the hallway, behind a pair of sturdy, yellow-wood doors. Adda had mentioned that it faced the lake, said she could see the moonlight skate over the water from Blake’s bed. Inara glanced down the hall, raised her hand to knock. Before her knuckles brushed wood, the door opened. A man not Mal frowned down at her. “Pardon me, Miss...Wuh de tyen, ah. Inara?” She blinked, disbelieving. An angular face with a firm jaw, a long patrician nose. Sandy hair going gray at the temples and deep, sea-green eyes. It couldn’t be. “Inara, for God’s sake, say something.” Inara forced her lips to smile. “Hello, Trevor.”

*** Thousands of miles away, River Tam lay awake in her bunk, unable to sleep. The Champion glided soundlessly through space, and one door down Gideon dreamed. River pushed back the covers, padded barefoot onto the bridge. “All the king’s horses and all the king’s men,” she murmured, watching the stars fly past. Then, rather suddenly, she smiled. “Hello, again. I missed you.” “Yeah, little girl. I missed you too. And I’m not the only one.” “I had to do it,” she said sadly. “Had to go.” “Martyrdom is overrated, honey. Trust me.” “Shouldn’t the knights sleep at night? Lie down their armor and rest their weary heads?” “Sorry, sweetie. I never got your word games when I was alive. Bein’ all corpsified doesn’t seem to help.” She smiled. “Raven. That’s a nice name.” “Yep, Zoe did good. I bet she’d like you to meet the wee babe.” “Someday I’ll go back. They’ll have a celebration. Flowers and treats for everyone.” “They want you home, honey.” “They want you home, too. But we don’t always get what we want.“ She wrapped her arms round her ankles, dipped her head forward so her temple touched her knee. “I got it wrong--back on Bellerophon. I saw everything wrong.” He patted her shoulder. “” “Humpty dumpty, cracked like an egg. They should be glad. They’ll finally get to see what’s inside.” “I’m gonna take a guess and say we’re talking medicine, not breakfast.” “The funny one,” she said with a fond smile. “I don’t know much, Little River. But sounds to me like you should talk to a doctor. Hey, don’t we know one of them?” He was gone before she could answer. ***

TBC in Part 6. I heart feedback--especially the plot-inspiring kind. Who knew it was hard to write a television show? ;)


Tuesday, January 3, 2006 6:32 PM


Damn. At this rate, Mal's going to have to shoot his entire crew, just for bein' all kinds of crazy.

But this: "a mouth that didn’t hesitate to flap its opinions" was priceless. I love it when folks do description in Jayne's voice. He's just so straight-forward, and often has a hilarious turn of phrase. Kudos.

Tuesday, January 3, 2006 7:17 PM


Really good. I am completly hooked on this series.

Tuesday, January 3, 2006 8:21 PM


Simon and Kaylee...omigod, that wedding scene was beautiful, I actually got all teary. And I loved River and Wash's little conversation at the end, that was a great way to end the chapter. I'm so psyched, I can't wait for chapter 6! :)

Tuesday, January 3, 2006 11:07 PM


Oh, WOW! Who in the frog humping verse is 'Trevor'? He can ruin every thing! Man oh man they are so humped! PLEASE, write more i am not sure i can take the suspence... Its killing me.

Tuesday, January 3, 2006 11:55 PM


Loved Kaylee and Simon's sudden wedding, that dress really did push Simon the last inch in the right direction. Laughed and laughed at Jayne and Caroline, oh yeah, can't wait to see Mal's reaction as and when that little bomb is dropped. Then there's criminal mastermind Inara doing so very well right up until that figure from her past turns up. I'm with OldSoul1987 - who in the nine hells is Trevour? And will he turn out to be friend or foe? - Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Wednesday, January 4, 2006 6:13 AM


Cap’n’s gonna hafta sleep with an ice pack on his nethers.

And that advice applies to Simon and Jayne as well. Aiya, they are in for it *grin* Loved those two parts. A wedding *sigh*...despite the fact that was like WHAM wedding

This chapter was hi-larious. Poor 'Nara with Mal's constant nicknames (candy corn? yeah, i'd be ready to smack him as well), and him claiming she saved herself...

Wednesday, January 4, 2006 8:38 AM


I can't wait to find out who Trevor is! Cliff-hanger, eek!

The constant teasing on Mal's side is hilarious, especially since it's obvious he's not really that arrogant, see Zoe's punch, hehe.
Inara certainly takes to crime!

Kaylee and Simon is almost too sweet to be true.

River and Wash chatting, break my heart again!

A lovely part! I hope the next one comes soon!

Wednesday, January 4, 2006 7:09 PM


I’ve commented anonymously on this series several times because it’s just so gorram good! But you’ve actually made me want to shed (relative) anonymity to make a few more comments (only the second time I’ve ever actually logged in!).

First, your Kaylee is sooo good. Best line: “Oh, Nara.” Kaylee whistled, stroking a hand down Inara’s full skirt. “You’re pure evil. Cap’n’s gonna hafta sleep with an ice pack on his nethers.” Isn’t that just like Kaylee, being so concerned about the Captain’s welfare!

Plot inspirations? We’ll you’ve already got them!
1. Trevor. When you first introduced him, he was obviously older, but your description makes him seem not that old! Could he be the reason Inara left Sihnon or is he just connected to it? Why DID she meet him in a blackout zone?? And oh the complications this will cause!
2. I’m thinkin’ that Inara is going to get her first driving lesson under less than desirable circumstances. Like a hail of gunfire or Mal bleeding all over the place on account of a hail of gunfire….
3. Hasn’t the crew of a certain Firefly-class ship learned that they shouldn’t go out walking alone…
at night…
on a planet with an increasing Alliance presence…
especially when their name is Jayne!
4. Glad Wash is back and is keeping River company. Will they all meet up on Shadow during some clandestine situation?? I too like the idea of her manipulating Gideon to get there.
5. Will Jayne realize he’s just a big sweetheart and that relationships could be good for him? Or is he still thinking about a certain young psychic?

Keep writing, I'm addicted!

Wednesday, January 4, 2006 8:52 PM


Wow, this fic is so gorram good!!
I just love every plot line you have with all the characters.
How funny is Jayne sleeping with Mal's sister?
Or the fact that Kaylee and Simon are married?
I love everyone's interaction with Raven(the coolest name BTW!).
It's also theraputic for me to have River talking with Wash. I loved him somthin' fierce.
Can't wait for more.
Please update soon.

Wednesday, January 4, 2006 10:11 PM


you;ve done a brilliant job! my boyfriend even allowed me to read him part- loved the automobile scene the best!

Squish is right - Serenity crew know better than to go off alone - though it always seems that no one thinks quite clearly after "zeal" that "burns calories" plus he's going to have to figure out how to handle Mal and Caroline. it won't work out, but killing her off (in the story, not jayne) would be more than Mal could take, so i'm no help here.

Who will the new Tam couple share the news with first? Kaylee of course would insist on making a huge announcement about it when everyone's finally gathered, that is if some flaw in Mal's "perfect plan" doesn't have them all in action before she gets the chance, but Inara would be the first on her list to tell. Mal would have wanted to give her away, should've.

Zoe is a good mama, but can Raven's first word be for her daddy?

River and Giddeon - too much alike for a pairing - more of a soldiers' pact friendship. Can he really be good in the end?

As for Mal and Inara, well. . . you know how i feel about THEM, and I'll swear never to read again if you let Trevor mess things up for Mal. Trevor started out as a platonic friend, if i'm not mistaken, though the "leak witness" maid is a problem. Perhaps he'll be good help for the job.

Not to throw you into a completely different tangent, but what about Book. Of all people, he would be a proper spiritual guide, and there is so much about his past that still goes unanswered.

Friday, January 6, 2006 9:21 AM


okay, it's official. i am reading WAY too many fics. i couldn't remember who trevor was...*hangs head in shame*


Friday, January 6, 2006 2:35 PM


OMG. I think I've consumed this series in a matter of hours, forgoing ALL the tons and tons of homework I have to do and staying up to all hours of the night to read it.

I'm completely and utterly hooked and in love. Your dialogue flows seemlessly. I can't even tell you the number of times I snorted or choked while reading this. I have a roomie, you know. She probably thinks I've gone completely insane.

All your pairings are fun to read - even Kaylee/Simon, which I've never really appreciated before. I love how you've written them. Kaylee, so happy and cheery and in love. Simon, letting himself love her even when River's off battling Reavers. They're really, really beautiful.

Your Mal/Inara is perfect. Complicated and messy and angsty and they're both so completely in love with each other that it's painful. Even though they've gotten together and then not gotten together and then gotten together again - you've got more tension between them then when they were dancing around each other on the show. Poor w00bies.

[Mal grinned at their host, lowered his voice to a conspiring whisper. “She’s just a little eager. Been savin’ herself for me.”

Inara nearly choked on her champagne.]

Oh. Man. That just killed me.

All your characterizations have been great (self-destructive Mal... whew), but your handling of Inara is some of the best I've seen. The way she's trapped between two lives. The blending of her Companioness and her new life of crime. Her feelings killing someone. Her feelings for Mal. It's all so real and intense and I just FEEL for her. Well done.

This story is so, so, so very awesome. Thanks so much for writing it and filling the Mal/Inara, Firefly shaped hole in my heart.


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Water, Water Everywhere
This is a sort of companion piece to the first section of Two Times They Were Wet and Cold. It's also sort of crack!fic. While Mal and Inara were having a pleasant dialogue in the cargo hold, Kaylee and Simon spent some time getting to know each other in a broom closet. Takes place during the series. PG-13.

Stumbling Along
Post-BDM. Mal makes a delivery on a familiar moon. Inara reflects. M/I. PG-13

Two Times They Were Wet and Cold
Two things that never happened to Mal and Inara. X-posted to LJ for the Truthsome Ficathon.

Shore Leave or That Youthful Feeling
Post-BDM. The crew visits a drinking establishment on Beaumonde—no, not that one. Shameless Mal/Inara fluff ensues.

One-shot set after OIS. Kaylee/Simon. Response to the prompt: “Simon bent Kaylee over....”

Past and Present
Fluff-angsty little standalone. Post-BDM. Mal/Inara. PG-13.

This is a standalone set preseries (no Simon, sorry, Leiasky). I have no idea what kind of introduction to slap on this thing, so I'll just say, enjoy! Special thanks to Ann for curtailing the worst of my rambles. NC-17. Comments are love!

Just Another Day
Just another day on Serenity. Preseries. PG-13. Happy September 30th.

Standalone. Prompt: Leather. Simon, Mal/Inara. PG-13.

Bed and Wine: The Epilogue
Huh. That went well....