Travel This One Spot
Friday, April 28, 2006

Drabble. Mal. Inara. Post-movie, no spoilers, no plot. Written for the prompt "Look at me." by terimaru.


Inara. Mal. Warning: dopey "poetic voice" is at large. Free for all ages. Set post-movie but no spoilers. Stream of blather, really.

------------------------------------------------- Travel This One Spot

The closest she has ever come to describing him, to likening him, is a kaleidoscope.

Captivating. And different with every blink of the eye.

He wears skins like scripts in a play, follows cues and switches patterns without telling the world around him, an actor in as much as he is the most real thing she has seen in years and years.

Real because he is unfathomable. Like the world she wants to travel. The mystery to hold her attention.

And so beautifully lost.

The soldier. The brigand. The gentleman. The father, the child, the murderer.

He murders. He kills without regret, for the sake of convenience, and he can touch the cheek of an innocent without dirtying her in the process, without a moment of disconnect. It jars her senses and only draws her closer. She wants to find the red line that weaves every single one of his faces into a net. The smallest common denominator that will allow her to predict him.

She hasn't seen it yet.

She can only hope she never will.

Poetry, horses and blood. Leather and fists and tomatoes. Floral cotton dresses. Formal courtly dances. Barricades built of human decay. Bitter and torn, but with such determination to be so.

He has a mask for every situation. Memorized before the 'verse shot him to pieces. He wants them to see him and he wants them to not. Both so desperately that he will take over every space, everywhere, with everyone, and keep twisting so his shape is as uncertain as that of water.

But there is a spot, right below his ribcage, where the palm of her hand will freeze him into holding still.

He'll tremble, caught, a terror and a challenge in his eyes, and when she studies his body and talks about temples built for pleasure he will talk about the way a human being can dissolve into dust, through many a liquid stage, and the way it kills the sense of awe one can find in any sensation.

And then he will hide his face in her and mutter about the confusion of what he knows and what he feels and he will almost sound like crying.

The chances of ever connecting all the pieces, she knows, are slim.

His reason for wanting to be seen are so he might know himself, and his reasons for wanting to stay hidden are because he knows there is nothing solid to define.

No line or barrier or ideal he cannot be made to break through. As unpredictable as the world, and as terrified of himself. A teeming mess of humanity.

She had wanted to see the universe.

In a way strange way, she had found it, looking at him.

- - END.


Friday, April 28, 2006 11:04 PM


The very best part of this conflicting cornucopia is the very last line. Now *that* defines them both. Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Friday, April 28, 2006 11:42 PM


This is *very* good. I'm really impressed (and wish I could say precisely what with; I'm not the world's best positive critiquer!).

Saturday, April 29, 2006 8:11 AM



Saturday, April 29, 2006 8:22 PM


Gorram it...this is some amazing stuff here, AgentRouka! I mean....Inara's reflections on Mal are both sooo accurate and so in-character for her method of communicating:)


Saturday, May 6, 2006 6:36 PM


Still my favorite drabble so far. I simply love this one. Thank you so much for writing this for me!

Monday, July 3, 2006 8:07 AM


keep your dopey "poetic voice" at large!! embrace your "poetic voice", however dopey it may be!!



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