BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL

TAMSIBLING

Forward Motion - Part 5
Monday, April 17, 2006

River still doesn't want to admit how bad it is, while Simon and Kaylee reach an understanding. Meanwhile, Mal and Inara talk some things through and the Blue-Gloved Men are on the prowl.


CATEGORY: FICTION    TIMES READ: 1861    RATING: 9    SERIES: FIREFLY

“Mei mei,” he whispered when he was only a hands-breadth away. “What have you done?”

It was always the same. River took in the sight of her fallen comrades, a gut-twisting nausea rising in her throat. Why couldn’t she change the images? It wasn’t true, none of it. This had not come to pass. She had saved them all, saved Simon and Kaylee, Inara and the captain, Jayne and Zoe. They were safe.

Glancing down to the pile of bodies, she recognized the faces now: Kaylee, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Book and the Captain. They were bleeding, their eyes frozen open in terror and pain. Dropping the sharp weapons from her hands, River covered her face to block out the images. When she pulled her hands away to plead with Simon for forgiveness, her vision was full of red. Her hands were covered in the sticky substance of the blood of her family.

The look of horror in his eyes was more than River could bear. In her mind she saw his disgust, saw him recoil as she reached out a bloody hand to him, saw the hardness in his gaze as he sealed his heart from her.

“Simon,” she whispered. He seemed not to hear her, as he leaned down and scooped up Kaylee’s dead form. “Simon!” She screamed it this time as he walked away from her, leaving her among the dead.

“Simon!”

“River, shh. It’s okay, mei mei. I’m here.”

River blinked rapidly, opening her eyes and banishing the vision from her sight. Her tears obscured her sight and it took her a few minutes to take in Simon’s concerned form sitting next to her. As she regained her senses, she heard his voice, whispering softly, felt his hand brush against her cheek and forehead, reassuring her that she was safe, that everyone was all right. She immediately felt her heart rate slow, her breathing return to normal as the fear from her nightmare fled her system.

“Do you remember what you were dreaming?” He asked the question so subtly River almost told him.

Realizing an instant before she would have confessed everything, she pulled her hand from his grasp and turned her face from him. “No.”

Startled by her coldness, Simon sat back on his stool, arms over his chest regarding her. She hated it. She could feel the fear in his mind, the confusion and the concern. Of course, she could feel his love strongest of all. He had always loved her, protected her, even as a child and she would never forget all he had sacrificed so she could be safe. She just wished it could be. She wanted so badly to be his sister again, the River he remembered, the one from before the academy. She had tried, hard, and failed and that, on top of her guilt for so many other things, was what weighed on her so heavily.

Wiping away sudden tears, she willed herself not to start crying again. Her eyes were raw from the salty tears they had spilled and she was tired of it. She was tired of all of it.

“River, if you tell me what’s going on I might be able to help.”

Simon’s voice was calm and controlled, but River knew it was just a mask. She could feel his underlying emotions and knew that he wished with every fiber of his being that he could make her tell him what was wrong. But if there was one thing that hadn’t changed it was River’s stubbornness.

“It’s nothing, Simon,” she answered him, her voice broken by sobs. Still refusing to look at him, she said, “There’s nothing you can do.”

“You don’t know that.” He circled the bed and retook her hand. Holding it tightly in his own, he held it to his chest as he brushed her tears away. “You may be brilliant, but I’m not an idiot. You don’t know for sure that there’s nothing I can do to help you.” River still would not meet his gaze and he hated it. Leaning down he placed a soft kiss on her cheek and whispered, “You don’t have to protect me.”

An image flashed in River’s mind and she saw him, lying at her feet, bleeding, dead. Her own hands were limp at her side, covered in blood – his blood. The image only served to bring a fresh onslaught of tears. Wrapping a desperate arm around his neck, River pulled him to her and sobbed on his shoulder.

Simon, at first startled by the sudden outburst, quickly adjusted and pulled his sister into a tight embrace. He held her against him as she cried out more of her pain and anguish, all the time wishing he knew how to help her.

***

A few hours later, Simon sat on the couch outside the infirmary. He had finally managed to get River back to sleep, with the help of a stronger sedative than the one before. Sighing heavily, all he could hear were her frantic sobs, her voice breaking as she pleaded with him to not make her sleep again. He had tried to reassure her, tried to tell her she was in no danger, but he had seen the fear in her eyes as he’d slid the needle in her arm. He’d seen her struggle to stay awake, to fight the powerful drug with everything she had.

But he had no choice. Until her body could regulate itself, she was in danger of pushing her systems into failure and that was not something Simon was going to allow to happen; ever.

Dropping his head into his hands, Simon longed for sleep of his own, but knew it would not come. Not until he knew what was wrong with River and more importantly, how to fix it.

Getting ready to go back to work, Simon lifted his head and was faced with a very angry looking captain. Mal stood before him, arms firmly crossed over his chest, a hard look on his face that Simon was, unfortunately, accustomed to seeing. Rising, Simon swallowed hard and asked, “Is there something you needed, captain?”

“My pilot,” Mal answered harshly, his expression never wavering.

Sighing again, Simon was forming a witty retort as he attempted to pass the captain and get back to his sister. But Mal sidestepped him, effectively blocking his path. Anger quickly replacing his guilt, Simon turned a fiery glance to the captain. “Get out of my way.”

“Not until you tell me how a genius like you could have missed something like this,” Mal told him, pointing a finger back at River’s sleeping form. “You are a doctor and what’s more, you’re her brother. How could you not know something like this could happen?”

Simon staggered involuntarily at the captain’s accusation. He had tried not to indulge his already fractured ego in the thought that this was entirely his fault. But as Mal called him on the carpet, he could no longer avoid it. The older man was right. He should have known what was happening to River. He had been too preoccupied with his own life to see it and now, she was in real danger.

“You’re right.” His voice was barely above a whisper. Refusing to look the captain in the eye, he studied the floor and said, “You’re right. This is my fault.”

“Damn right it’s your fault,” Mal yelled, turning away from the doctor and pacing a short and angry path across the room. “Do you even know what’s wrong with her?”

Simon’s cheeks flushed in shame, as he answered, “No, not yet.”

“Not yet,” Mal mocked, still pacing. He was fuming, Simon could see that. And he couldn’t blame him.

“I’m sorry.”

“Well, sorry ain’t gonna get her back on the bridge now is it,” Mal yelled again, his voice rising in volume. He had again stopped in front of Simon, his face inches from the younger man’s and his chest heaving in agitation.

This was how Inara found them. She had heard the shouting from the kitchen and come to see what was wrong. As she rounded the corner into the common room and took in the sight before her, her eyes immediately narrowed. If Mal couldn’t be the biggest hwoon dan in the ‘verse.

“What do you think you’re doing,” she asked no one in particular. Striding forward quickly, she pulled the infirmary doors shut, checking on River for just a moment to be sure she was still asleep.

Once the doors were secured, she whirled back to face the two men, her eyes blazing with anger. “How is your yelling helping anything?” She addressed this to Mal, her fury clearly directed at him.

“Inara, this ain’t none of your business,” Mal bit out, never taking his eyes off of Simon. “This is between me and my crew.”

“I’m a part of that crew now, Mal, whether you like it or not,” she told him firmly. Stepping in front of him, she wedged herself between Simon and the fuming captain, and said, “Simon, why don’t you get back to River?”

Without another word, Simon entered the room, leaving the companion and the captain in the midst of a tense staring contest.

“You had no right to do that,” Mal told her, his voice no longer loud, but now a controlled growl. “That boy messed up and he deserved to be put in his place.”

“He messed up,” she asked him incredulous. Could he really be this dense? And if so, could she really be in love with a man this dense? Shaking the thought away, she continued. “What about you Mal?”

The shock that registered on his face told her she had struck a nerve. Crossing her arms over her chest, she said, “You’ve been spending more time with River than anyone over the past few months. If you’re going to blame Simon for missing the signs, then you’re going to have to blame yourself as well.”

He held her gaze for a moment more and she saw the fire fade from his eyes. In its place, a deep sadness shone and it hit Inara in the gut the concern and fear she saw mixed there. He really did care for River, like a sister, and he was just as worried for her as Simon.

Finally backing away, Mal hung his head dejectedly and slumped onto the couch. Giving him a moment, Inara took a seat next to him and took one of his hands in hers. She was slightly surprised to find it was shaking, but she didn’t say anything. She just waited for him to continue.

And he did. “You’re right. Truth is, I’m not mad at the doc, I’m mad at myself. I knew somethin’ wasn’t right, but I chose to ignore it. I wanted to believe that she -" He trailed off and Inara squeezed his hand gently.

“You wanted to believe she was all right,” Inara finished for him. “It’s okay, we all did. Especially because we lost so much,” she said quietly, images of Wash and Book floating into her mind’s eye. Blinking them away, she told him, “But regardless of what we did or didn’t see, yelling at Simon and placing blame is not going to fix this. Don’t you think he feels terrible enough?”

“I know he does,” Mal said truthfully, looking down at his rough fingers, interlaced with Inara’s delicate ones. “I knew that before I came in here. I just …” He trailed off again and Inara waited patiently for him to finish the thought. “I just thought if I blamed him, I’d feel better.”

“Oh, Mal,” Inara whispered. She leaned over and placed a gentle kiss on his cheek. Leaning against his side, he shifted slightly to wrap an arm around her shoulders. She sank into his warmth and comfort and wished again, for the second time in as many days, that she knew how to fix this family. She would give just about anything to take their pain away. But Inara knew, it was never that easy.

After a few blissful moments of peace, Mal shifted and said, “I ‘spose I should go apologize.”

Rising, he headed for the doors, but Inara pulled him back. “Let me,” she told him. “Why don’t you go do some captain-y things?”

He looked between Inara and the room and decided. Leaning down, he placed a gentle kiss on her lips and then walked out towards the bridge.

Inara watched him go and then, sighing heavily, squared her shoulders and pulled open the infirmary doors. One problem solved; one more to go.

***

“I think it’s time for us to turn up the pressure, don’t you?”

The operative’s partner grimaced slightly at the thought. It was never a pleasant experience to enter someone else’s mind. The terrain was always rocky and horribly unfamiliar. There was an abundance of nonsense and often times overwhelming surges of fear. But often, it was a necessary evil of their job, so he would do it.

“I suppose,” he answered, settling more comfortably into his seat, adjusting the cerebral cap he wore to fit snugly around his ears. “But let’s be quick. I can only imagine how disconcerting River Tam’s brain will be.”

Flipping the switch on the arm of his chair, he felt the heat and energy of the skull cap surge over his scalp and around the back of his neck. The electrodes were designed to stimulate certain synapses in his brain and his partner’s, synapses that had been conditioned from birth to be sensitive, overly so, in order to be pliable to his command.

In an instant, he and his partner had joined their conscious in a mental bond. Using the pulses from the machine and the medicines that were being systematically pumped into their systems at regular intervals, they reached out across time and space and found the minefield that was River Tam. Smirking simultaneously, they reached out blue-gloved hands and slowly started to pull down her brick walls.

***

Simon stumbled from the infirmary to his room in a daze. River had been in and out of consciousness for the past three days and Simon had witnessed every agonizing moment. Despite the protestations of Kaylee, Inara, the captain and Zoe, Simon had refused to leave his sister’s side. He continuously poured over test results and brain scans, trying vainly to find some clue that would help him help River. And he was exhausted. More tired than he’d ever been before. But he couldn’t allow himself the luxury of sleep. As long as River was in pain, he would get no rest.

But Inara had managed to convince him to at least change his clothes and wash up. It had taken a good deal of arguing and an even bigger bit of persuasion, but the companion had finally succeeded in driving him from the room. And truthfully, even he was getting sick of his own odor.

Sighing heavily, he stripped off his sweater and made it to the sink. The cold water he splashed on his face did little to revive him. Well, he thought wryly, it was worth a shot.

Falling back on his bed, he threw an arm over his face, trying to block out the harsh overhead lighting and again running through the events of the past few days, looking for the key evidence he’d missed. He quickly regretted lying on the bed; exhausted as he was he could easily drift off, regardless of whether or not his sister needed him.

Taking a deep breath, he propped himself up, ready to get back to River, when a voice stopped him.

“Don’t you dare get out of that bed, Simon Tam.”

Blinking rapidly, Simon brought Kaylee’s defiant form into focus. Despite the stoic expression on her beautiful features, Simon could read the concern in her eyes. Shaking his head, he swung his legs over the side of his bed and told her, “I have to, Kaylee. I need to get back to River.”

She was sitting next to him in an instant, a hand on his shoulder. The touch, which was the closest they’d been in days excited and calmed him all at once, and he closed his eyes to savor the feeling. “No, you don’t,” she told him quietly.

When Simon finally steeled himself to face her, there was no mistaking the concern and love radiating from her. It nearly broke his heart.

Reaching up to place a hand on her cheek, Simon brought his face closer to hers and whispered, “Bao bei, I have to stay with her. I’m all she has.”

“No, Simon, that ain’t true,” Kaylee said, reaching up to cover the hand on her cheek with her own. “You and River both are a part of this crew and that makes you family. That means you got all of us, even Jayne.” As Simon smirked at the thought, Kaylee smiled and took his other hand in hers. “Well, that can’t be helped.” She paused again, waiting for his protests. When none came, she continued, “You gotta let us help you or you’re going to end up in even worse shape than River. And we –" She broke off, her smile of only moments before washed away as tears filled her deep brown eyes. “I couldn’t take that. I can’t lose you.”

Simon again took in her beautiful face, her cheeks glistening slightly as her tears fell. He had treated her horribly the past few days and now, instead of being angry, she was concerned for him, for his well-being, because she loved him.

“I don’t deserve you.” It was a whisper, but it surprised them both. He hadn’t meant to say it out loud, but it was the truth. Reaching up a hand, he brushed some of her tears away. Leaning in, he placed a gentle kiss on her lips, tasting the saltiness of her tears. He had seen her cry too many times, and he had caused her to cry too much. How could she care so much for someone like him?

“What,” she asked, her eyes searching his as he pulled away, his hand still against her cheek. “Simon, I –“

“I don’t, Kaylee,” he told her, his voice growing steadier. “I’ve behaved horribly this week. Pushing you away, refusing to talk to you. Basically ignoring what you told me,” he finished quietly, his cheeks immediately blushing in shame that Kaylee had professed her love for him and in return, like a coward, he had watched her walk away.

“And yet, after all that, you don’t care about any of it – you just care about me and I,” Simon stopped abruptly, uncertain of how to finish, He could read the confusion in her eyes, the way she bit her lower lip telling him she was nervous that this could end badly for them – for her – but not if Simon could help it.

“I love you.”

It was the simplest of statements, only three little syllables, but so hard to say. Simon had to marvel at the irony.

“You do?” The break in Kaylee’s voice almost brought him to tears. How could he have let her believe any differently?

Taking both her hands in his, Simon shifted closer to her, turning to face her. She was still crying, but the pain on her face had been replaced with a glimmer of hope and it warmed his heart for the first time in days. “I do,” he answered, his eyes never leaving hers. “I should have told you months ago. And then I should have told you a few days ago, I just –" Pausing, he took a deep breath and thought of his sister.

“Kaylee, when River told us what was happening to her, I couldn’t … I couldn’t believe she’d been suffering for so long and I didn’t know …”

Reaching out a hand and running it through his hair, Kaylee tried to soothe him. “Simon—"

“No, wait,” he told her. “I need to get this out. I want you to understand why I’ve been —" He stopped again and then had to smile slightly as the right words came to mind. “Well, why I’ve been such a boob.”

The expression brought him the desired reaction from Kaylee and her slight giggle fortified him to continue. “River has suffered so much and I’ve pretty much been unable to do anything about that. So the thought that she could be suffering again, it just – Kaylee, it broke my heart for her.”

Simon’s own tears, which he had been holding in for three days started to fall now. Kaylee reached out in an instant, wrapping him in a tight and warm embrace, whispering soothing words into his ear. He held her back tightly, unable to keep his emotions in check any longer.

“I was so ashamed that I had been completely oblivious to her needs,” he choked out between sobs. “I just, I couldn’t see you without feeling guilty.”

“Simon, this isn’t your fault,” Kaylee told him, pulling away and taking his face in her hands. “What River’s going through don’t have nothing to do with what you did or didn’t do.”

“I know that, bao bei, I do,” Simon told her, pulling her back into him. He buried his face in her hair, taking in the sweet scent of strawberries and engine grease. God, he’d missed her.

“But I couldn’t see it before. I couldn’t see past my own stupid pride, my inflated ego that made me think I could control everything.” Instead of calming down, Simon was only getting more worked up. Abruptly pulling away from Kaylee, he rose and in one swift motion punched the wall of his room. His fist immediately started throbbing, but he didn’t care.

He hit the wall again and again and was about to make contact for a fourth time when Kaylee stopped him. Wrapping an arm under and around his shoulder, Kaylee brought her other arm over his chest and held him tightly against her.

“Simon, stop,” she whispered, her breath warm on his neck. “You’re hurting yourself.”

Simon sank back into her, his entire body crumpling as his anger receded. Replaced with deep exhaustion and pain, he let Kaylee lead him back to his bunk and lie him down.

Pulling a blanket over him, she brought over a damp cloth and wiped the blood off his hand gently. He winced as the cuts stung, but didn’t pull away from her. He didn’t want to be without her ever again.

As she continued to gently run the damp rag over his bruised knuckles, Simon felt his eyelids growing heavy. He wouldn’t be able to stay awake much longer.

“Kaylee,” he said, his voice hoarse from tiredness and spent emotion.

“Shh, sleep now,” she whispered to him. Bending down she placed a gentle kiss first on his forehead and then on his lips.

“River?”

“She’s fine. Inara and the captain are with her.” Simon couldn’t tell as his eyes were already shutting, but he thought he heard the sound of a sob in her voice. “You just gotta rest, honey.”

He felt her run fingers through his hair and he thought of a million other things to tell her. He had to get them out before sleep claimed him. But before he could speak, he felt her weight shift on the bed as she rose to leave him. Reaching out a hand, Simon caught hers in his grasp and forced his eyelids to open just once more. “Stay with me,” he asked.

Not speaking, Kaylee smiled slightly as her heart swelled at his request. Shutting off the light and making sure the door was shut, she gingerly made it back to his side. Lifting up the blanket she had placed around him, she snuggled in beside him, laying her head on his chest. He snaked an arm around her, drawing her close and Kaylee reveled in the warmth and comfort of lying in his arms.

Drawing faint circles over his muscles, she watched the rise and fall of his chest become more regular; listened as his heart beat slowed to a sleeping rate.

“I love you,” he murmured again into her hair before sleep finally took him. Pressing a soft kiss to his cheek, she whispered back, “I love you too.”

Kaylee resettled herself at his side and spent a long while listening to the rhythmic sound of his heart beat before she joined him in slumber.

***

“Well, I have to admit,” Mal said, still staring out the door of the infirmary in disbelief. “I didn’t think lil’ Kaylee had it in her.”

Inara smirked at his comment. She had never doubted her friend’s ability to get Simon to listen to reason. Besides, even the stubborn doctor knew he needed rest and with the love of his life’s insistence, he didn’t have a chance of refusing.

“No power in the ‘verse can stop Kaylee,” Inara murmured in reply, her eyes never leaving River’s sleeping form. Inara had volunteered to watch the girl while Simon changed and then had insisted that Kaylee convince him to sleep as well. Mal had wandered by at that moment and also agreed to stay with his albatross. Inara was glad, she didn’t like sitting here alone thinking of the pain that River must be suffering.

“True enough,” Mal answered, turning back into the room and sitting across from her at River’s side. He gently reached out and took her hand holding it in his own and Inara brought her eyes up to study him. The look on his face as he stared at River brought tears to her eyes. The love and devotion he showed to the girl was nothing short of miraculous and it reminded Inara of why she loved him.

“I wish we knew what was going on in there,” he whispered, reaching out to gently brush a stray strand of hair off River’s forehead.

“Something tells me we’re better off not knowing,” Inara replied. Sighing heavily, she rose from the girl’s side and backed up into the room’s other bed, leaning against it, her arms over her chest. She was intently studying her feet when Mal asked, “What is it?”

Inara didn’t want to answer him, she didn’t want him to know how bothered she was by the fact that River was in so much pain. That they were still flying blind and that she was still grieving the deaths of Wash and Book. That she wanted more than anything to stay on board but that she had no idea how to reconcile her love for him and still have some semblance of a life. That she didn’t want to stop being a companion, because then she didn’t know who she’d be. And Mal could never love someone with no sense of themselves. She didn’t want to tell him any of that.

So she shrugged slightly and didn’t meet his gaze. “I’m just worried about River and Simon and Kaylee.” She was rambling. The man could make her blush, ramble and sigh uncontrollably and she still hated that fact. “I’m just worried.”

She had known he would come to her then, try to comfort her. And he didn’t disappoint. Rounding River’s bed, he came and stood in front of Inara, so close she could feel the heat radiating off his body. Gently, he placed a hand under her chin and raised her face so they were again looking in each other’s eyes. Ai ya, what was it about those eyes that made her all kinds of weak?

“We’ll get through this,” he told her, the sincerity in his gaze catching her unawares. Mal was rarely sure of anything, but the look on his face told her he had no doubt about his crew’s ability to persevere. “We will. River’s strong and the doc’s smart. I may not like him all that much, but he is. And I know there’s nothin’ he wouldn’t do for his sis. With our help, they’ll get through this.”

“And then what?” The question escaped her lips and Inara silently cursed herself for the faux pas. Now wasn’t the time; she wasn’t sure there would ever be a time.

“What do you mean?”

“Look, Mal, now is not the time to talk about it,” she told him, walking away from him and resuming her seat at River’s side. “Forget I said anything.”

“No, I don’t think so darlin’,” he told her, wrapping his arms around her shoulders from behind. Pressing a kiss into her dark curls, he said, “Tell me what’s really got you spooked.”

Inara leaned against his strong form and reveled in the feel of his arms around her. Being with him was everything she had imagined it to be and more. She loved the intimacy with which they could now behave in each other’s presence and she loved the fact that now, without hesitation, he was holding her. She didn’t want it to stop; that much she knew.

But she didn’t know if it could continue. “I told you before Mal, our relationship is complicated. I’m worried that after this crisis passes, I’ll …” She trailed off, uncertain of how to continue and afraid that her emotions would betray her. She could already feel the tears welling in her eyes.

“You actually think I’m gonna let you off this boat,” Mal asked, swiveling her around to face him. He knelt in front of her, both his hands over hers and continued, “Inara, I know that this ain’t gonna be easy, but I, I can’t watch you leave. Not again. Not after everything we’ve seen, everything we’ve done,” he finished quietly, reaching up a hand to cup her cheek.

Her tears had started to fall and she hated it. But she couldn’t stop them. “Mal, it’s not that easy. I’m a Companion and that means, well, it’s more than a job.”

The hurt look that passed across his face made her heart leap into her throat. She knew he wouldn’t understand. She could see him immediately jump to the wrong conclusion, that he wasn’t enough for her. That she wanted to go back to work because she needed more than him to fulfill her. He couldn’t be more wrong.

“It’s not what you think,” she reassured him, squeezing both his hands in hers. “I’ve been trained as a Companion for almost fifteen years, Mal. It’s been more than a way to make a living. It’s been who I am. If we’re together and I leave the Guild, I …” She had to stop again, afraid to put her fears into words. Afraid that her voice and her emotions would betray her; afraid that he wouldn’t understand.

“Inara, come on, you gotta tell me.” Mal’s plaintive tone made her heart flutter. The last thing she wanted was to cause him pain.

“If I’m not a Companion, then I don’t know who I am. And that thought scares me.” Once the words were out, her tears came more freely, pouring down her cheeks. She covered her face with her hands in shame, embarrassed to be crying so unabashedly in front of him for the second time in under a week. But it couldn’t be helped. She was in love with him, worried about River and in general overwhelmed. Her emotions had held out for as long as they could.

Mal didn’t know what to tell her. He hadn’t liked the idea of her being a Companion from day one, but as he had waited almost two years to make his feelings known, he’d had no right to tell her what to do. He still didn’t, actually. Inara was a grown woman, a beautiful woman, and the woman he was in love with. He didn’t want her to go back to work, but he didn’t want her to miserable either. There had to be a way through this.

Without thinking much more, Mal leaned forward and pressed his lips to hers, feeling the sweetness and softness of her mouth. Startled at first, Inara immediately melted into the kiss, pressing her mouth more fervently against his. Their hands, which were already intertwined, broke apart and found their way into each other’s hair. Mal cradled the back of her neck and kissed her harder, expressing his passion and his love for her.

When they finally broke apart to come up for air, Inara panted, “This doesn’t change anything.”

“I know,” Mal said, working to catch his own breath. “But it’s gotta make a difference.”

Nodding, Inara wrapped her arms around him and buried her face in his shoulder, smelling his familiar, warm scent. He held her back tightly and wished he knew how to make everything better. As captain, he thought that was something he should know how to do. It frustrated him to no end that he couldn’t.

COMMENTS

Monday, April 17, 2006 5:50 PM

LEIASKY


Ohh, I could just hit Mal for being such a jerk to Simon! Would have loved to see Inara's conversatrion with him after she finished with Mal, tho!

I hope someone stops those blue handed me before they rip poor River apart.

And the sweet scene with S/K was soooo nice. Glad he realized that he isn't alone and that he should let Kaylee help him.

Monday, April 17, 2006 6:29 PM

BLUEEYEDBRIGADIER


Dang it...I am tearing up here....so much love and pain floating around that I am surprised a proximity alarm doesn't sound;)

Great job here, TamSibling:)

BEB

Monday, April 17, 2006 7:01 PM

ANONYMOUS


This chapter was absolutely perfect, so incredibly bittersweet that it just wrenched my heart and made me believe that love really does conquer all in one fell swoop.

Brilliant writing, as always. Continue soon!

~Wanmei (too lazy to sign in)~

Monday, April 17, 2006 9:10 PM

ECAMBER


I love this chapter. Beautifully written with so much development going on...

But I have to admit to being rather cynical. Love does't conquer all and I get irritated when it seems to. Love is not enough... so what other quality will you add in to make it enough?

Monday, April 17, 2006 9:32 PM

ANONYMOUS


Great writing, as always.

Thanks for posting again so soon. Not to sound ungrateful, but please, keep it coming.

I can't wait to see how the crew discovers the blue handed monsters breaking into River's head. I just know that Simon and Mal will be damage bound as soon as they figure it out.

Happy writing!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006 12:04 AM

AMDOBELL


This is brilliant but I think Inara was wrong to send Mal away and speak to Simon for him. Mal needed to apologise to Simon himself and Simon needed to hear it. And I love it that Inara has finally told Mal about her secret worry about losing her identity if she leaves the Guild. Kaylee and Simon are lovely together but poor, poor River. We really need to find a way to end those Hands of Blue and quick, while there is still enough of River to save! Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Tuesday, April 18, 2006 2:31 AM

ANONYMOUS


I love your writing style and your plot very much. But I think it's too easy of a plot device to make one of the characters stupid or cruel (in this case Mal) to create angst for another (Simon). I think Mal has enough experience with leadership than to treat Simon like that. But as Joss has shown us, Mal's temper can be mercurial. I look forward to where you're going with this.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006 12:44 PM

ANONYMOUS


I read all of the S/K fic and I think this chapter is just about the most poignant and well balanced I've seen in awhile. I loved Simon's vulnerability and self recrimination, Mal's inability to deal with it rationally and all of the conversations between S/K, M/I. YAY Kaylee - Poor Simon
Bring on more!!

Thursday, June 8, 2006 7:40 AM

RIVERISMYGODDESS


I feel tired just from reading about River and Simon's exhaustion. Very well written stuff doll.

I am glad that S/K and M/I can get some intimate couple time even in the midst of the crisis with River, it shows how strongly thye care for one another.


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Post-Miranda. River is turning 18 and she makes a wish that unsettles her brother. Simon/Kaylee, with the rest of the crew. PG-13 to R for suggestive language.

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Homesick: Chapter 9
River decides to tell her parents the truth - all of it - and they're not happy. Kaylee is still reeling from her visit with Simon. And another Big Damn Hero joins the mix. Kaylee/Simon, hints of Mal/Inara.

Homesick: Chapter 8
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