Sailing Beyond the Sunset, pt 04
Thursday, May 4, 2006

The crew lands on Persephone and enjoys their bounty.


with apologies to Robert Heinlein for the bastardization of one of his titles…

previous story segments: pt 01,pt 02,pt 03

- - - - -

This first section, like several other future sections, was inspired by another fanfic that I liked but wanted more, so I am writing it into my story. If that upsets you, and you aren’t the author in question, tough. If you are said author and it bothers you, please let me know, and I will do what I can to accommodate you. The story is Jubal’s New Bounty, by AINTWEJUST. I recommend reading it before starting this one.

- - -

Jubal Early's little ship floated through the Black, fusion engine pushing him past stars and systems in mere instants. He was glad for the modifications he had made to this little ship. It was faster than most, at least as far as he knew. Not that he was in a hurry. He would find his quarry soon enough.

He leaned back and looked over the reports again. He actually considered himself lucky, upon learning of the path of bodies in River Tam's wake. Persephone. Arial. Even the Shepherds and other residents of Haven, though they were killed by a gunship instead of these supposed creepy blue glove wearing men. The hundreds of reavers killed on the planet that the Miranda broadwave was sent from. Well, there was no feeling sorry for those people, at least not now. The Alliance had made them into those monsters, and the only current solution was to kill or be killed when it came to reavers. The Alliance, heh. They had been a good source of income, when they were whole and powerful, but now the fractured remains bickered and warred among themselves, while the rest of the 'verse enjoyed some relative peace from their oppression.

He turned his focus back to the blue-gloved men. There existed no factual data on these men on the Cortex, nothing about their training, affiliation, or even their names. Anyone who had ever seen these guys was either dead or worked so closely with them that their names and affiliation were a mystery as well. He wondered, absently, to whom they reported, if anyone. Stories and rumors he had found though, and he didn't like what he found. Apparently, anywhere River and Simon Tam went, these guys had followed, and anyone who had any sort of contact with the Tams ended up dead. Not just dead, but in the worst way. The bodies of Alliance officers and some other interesting folk on Persephone had been found with all of their blood vessels burst, drowned in their own blood. "Does that seem right to you?" he wondered aloud, speaking out to the infinite Black.

That would have been his fate as well, had he succeeded in returning with River. All in all, he had to be grateful to her, both for orchestrating the release of the crew of Serenity from his grasp, and for informing him of said consequences by sending his ship to find him. Smart girl, that one, though she wasn't quite right.

Then again, who is?

- - -

Mal sat in the pilot seat, having given River a break. Her brother had been slow to start using his new toy, but once River became used to it, he was almost unrelenting. Simon seemed happy enough with the results, and had been more than willing to give her a day’s rest when Mal told him that she was going with them on Persephone. Strange stories had reached him via the Cortex, and he really wanted the Reader by his side and alert, in case things went sour, as they so often did on this gorram planet.

He had found a fence for the antennas in an old business associate, oddly enough. Dealing with Badger was not his idea of an easy job, but they had parted on good terms after the ‘sale’ of the cattle on Jiangyin, and even though he had taken the crew and ship hostage when Mal got himself into that swordfight, he would rather get paid for this cargo sooner instead of later. His side still ached every now and again from where that hwoon dahn pansy had stuck him. He did have a chuckle, however, at the thought of Atherton lying on the ground, wounded, as he poked him in the stomach a few times for good measure.

As the planet began to come up to greet them, Mal took the controls, the smells of cooking and actual food wafting up to him from the dining room.

- - -

Kaylee, Simon, and River had been preparing food for almost an hour and a half. It started with Kaylee as head chef, telling Simon what to do and how to do it as River watched excitedly. As things started cooking, with various wait times, Kaylee and Simon had taken to necking in the corner, which would have resulted in their precious food being burned had River not jumped in to finish it. As it was with everything else, cooking came naturally to her, so by the time Kaylee and Simon realized their negligence she had taken control of the stove, starting several more dishes that they hadn’t planned on. The thick steaks sat out on the counter, still raw and marinating, as pots on the burners bubbled and simmered.

It smelled fantastic. Jayne had already tried to sneak a taste twice, succeeding the first time but getting caught by River the second time as she smacked his hand away with a wooden spoon, smiling her eerie little smile. Inara had delayed her plans for the afternoon, and even Zoe was about and semi-cheerful.

River, looking over to her brother with an amused smile on her face, said “Why don’t the two of you go find out how everyone wants their steak cooked?”

As she said it, Jayne had crossed the threshold from the crew quarters and said loudly “I want mine rare, still mooing if possible,” smiling as Simon winced at the comment.

Simon and Kaylee wandered off to find the rest of the crew, happy to be clear of Jayne’s voyeuristic eye. Jayne wandered over to the stove again, and seeing river distracted with something behind her, started to dip is finger into one of the pots. An image of a huge spoon coming down on him flashed across his mind, and he pulled his hand back as River let out a giggle.

“You can taste some if you want Jayne, if you’ll help set up the table.”

Immediately he began to set out plates and flatware, pausing every minute to taste something different. It was all so good, and there was so much of it. This job had definitely turned out well.

River tossed a couple of the steaks on the grill, Jayne’s eyes turning to stare. It had been a long time since they had this much real food, and longer still since he had tasted steak. His mouth watered at the smell coming from the grill, his eyes still transfixed on the cooking meat.

- - -

River loved the smell of the food cooking. The delicate spices and bold flavors always made her think of her parents. Neither of them went anywhere near the kitchen, except maybe to get some ice for a cocktail, but they had always had a servant there who cooked them amazing meals. Closing her eyes, she could picture her father’s estate. The soft, warm wood furniture, sitting down as a family for meals once a week, more often if possible, and her parent’s smiles as she told them she wanted to go into the special program…

Her thoughts darkened, turning to the horrible place she had spent nearly two and a half years of her life. She knew that she would eventually tell Simon some of what they had done to her there, but for now it just seemed easier to keep it buried deep inside her. It had surprised her just a little that she was able to let Simon use the scanner he found without too much of the ice cold crawlies. Medical equipment, as well as the shots and smoothers, still reminded her vividly of some of the most horrible experiences of her life. She shook her head violently in an attempt to bury those thoughts deep again.

Returning her focus to her family, she felt a sadness, particularly in how Simon had felt about them. They did not believe him that she had been going through what she was going through, and they had not parted on the best of terms. Simon had left his father with a dropped jaw at the municipal authority, never once even looking back. This brought a wave of mixed emotions over her. While it was very sad that their parents had seemingly given up on her, he hadn’t. His love for her had kept him going to come and save her.

A faint thought entered her mind, only for a second, of her father on a spaceship. She smiled, knowing that wasn’t even close to possible, but the thought had amused her, if only momentarily.

- - -

The smells of cooking meat had reached his nostrils, and it was everything he could do to keep himself at the helm to finish landing the ship. What a good haul it had been, finding that food as well as the antennas, with the added bonus of the doc’s new toy. Now, if he could make an excursion on this gorram planet without it blowing up in his face, that would truly be spectacular.

- - -

Kaylee and Simon had found Inara in her shuttle, straightening up and making preparations for whatever plans she had for this afternoon. She smiled as she looked up and saw them, hand in hand, genuinely happy for the pair.

Whenever she saw them together, there was a little sadness in her heart. She often longed for that kind of connection with another human being, one in particular, but she felt constrained by her job to push those feelings deep inside of her. What good would she be as a Companion if she let emotions get in the way?

Smiling, she returned to the present. A sumptuous meal was almost ready for their consumption, and Kaylee had asked her how she wanted her meat cooked.

“A nice medium would be fine, thank you,” she smiled. “Hold on a minute and I’ll head back that way with you.”

She finished putting her hair up in a loose bun, then followed them out of her shuttle, shutting the door behind her.

- - -

Zoe came in and helped Jayne get the plates and the pots of food onto the table while River continued to cook the steaks.

Kaylee and Simon entered from the cargo bay, followed by Inara. Mal walked in from the bridge, yawning and stretching, and smiled slightly at River.

“That smells damn good, little one. ‘Izzit about ready?”

Inara looked over at Simon and Kaylee, puzzled for a second that they had asked her about the temperature of her meat and not said anything to the cook, then comprehension dawned on her face as she realized who was cooking.

Everyone took their seats at the table as River proudly brought the huge plate of steaks over, putting one on each plate as people claimed their seats, and an additional one on Jayne’s plate. She sat down and looked at the bounty before them on the table.

There were steaming bowls of several different kinds of beans and other vegetables, fresh sliced tomatoes, and a pile of mashed potatoes. There was a plate of fresh bao, as well as two full pitchers of cider. On the counter behind them was a large bowl of strawberries alongside a bowl of cool cream and a cooling cake.

“Well, this looks wonderful. Dig in everyone,” Mal said to everyone, though Jayne already had his mouth full of steak.

- - - - -

pt 05

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Translations ( from ):

hwoon dahn - bastard


Thursday, May 4, 2006 6:53 AM


Simon and Kaylee almost burning dinner...HEE!

This was a nice, slice-of-life chapter. Why do I think it's leading up to bad stuff befalling our heroes? *is paranoid*

Thursday, May 4, 2006 7:16 AM


"If there's noone in the room, is it still a room?"

Early kicks ass hehe good story River youdabess .

Lookin forward to more from ya!

Thursday, May 4, 2006 8:13 AM


Oh that was great. S/K almost burning dinner!

Of course River sent them off to find out how everyone wanted their steak cooked already knowing and just hoping S/K would seek out some privacy to continue their necking and not REALLY go do what River asked!

Looking forward to the next chapter!

Thursday, May 4, 2006 11:43 AM


Gorram, now I'm hungry. :D

Bless, so sweet with River trying to get them privacy and it not working. Very nice and just what she'd do. (And then go and look to see if Simon was still being a boob, right? lol.)

I also like the Zoe insight. She really would be all eaten up with so much pain and anger and hatred right now. Poor Zoe :(

More please!

Thursday, May 4, 2006 5:21 PM


Jubal's back! YEAH! You've got him spot-on, here. I'm glad to see one of the 'verse's gorram best villains back in diabolical action.

Great job on all the voices. River cooking, Jayne meddling, tasting, River with the psychic spoon-smacking...all very good. You know my pervy mind could see some Jayne/River NC17 right after I read that though, right?

Fave line: “A nice medium would be fine, thank you,” she smiled. “Hold on a minute and I’ll head back that way with you.”----Excellent 'Nara-talk. Could hear her speaking.

Thursday, May 4, 2006 6:54 PM


I love and adore the fact that Jayne get's two steaks right off the bat.

Nice fic RiverismyGoddess, can't wait for number 5

Monday, May 22, 2006 5:23 PM



Favorite lines:

1.Jayne had crossed the threshold from the crew quarters and said loudly “I want mine rare, still mooing if possible,”


Monday, May 22, 2006 5:33 PM



2. “You can taste some if you want Jayne, if you’ll help set up the table.”

Jayne is all man, well sorta, you do a very good job of pulling that out of him

on to 5


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From Bad to Worse, chapters 1-10 (COMPLETE)
This is a re-post from before the BSR got hit a few weeks ago.

The story takes place in between ‘The Train Job’ and ‘Bushwhacked.’ According to Inara, there is a three-ish month gap here, so I thought it would be perfect for this little story and its epilogue.

From Bad to Worse, pt 10
Thrilling heroics ensue.

From Bad to Worse, pt 09
Mal, Zoe, and Jayne come to the rescue, and backup from the engine room arrives.

From Bad to Worse, pt 08
Claire is put to the ropes, though the cavalry is on the way.

From Bad to Worse, pt 07
Mal, Jayne, and Zoe make their way back to Serenity, and Claire and her posse run into even more troubles.

From Bad to Worse, pt 06
The fighting is ended for now, though revenge is on more than one person's mind.

From Bad to Worse, pt 05
The feds arrive, a shootout involving the BDHs and Claire's posse ensues.

From Bad to Worse, pt 04
The gold is recovered, and a getaway is planned.

Sailing Beyond the Sunset, pt 17
Several crew members dwell on things past while one reunion is made and a wave from an old aquaintence is received.

From Bad to Worse, pt 03
The crews search the wreckage for their valuable treasure as Wash and Book attempt some thrilling heriocs.