FAITH SERIES: 11. "Blessings and Curses"
Saturday, July 8, 2006

"The Fryes find out about Kaylee and Simon's new addition and the impromptu wedding. Inara tries to shut herself away but the Captain figures it's time to get some honest answers. As things get evenmore complicated a real bombshell is about to fall into their laps."



SUMMARY: "The Fryes find out about Kaylee and Simon's new addition and the impromptu wedding. Inara tries to shut herself away but the Captain figures it's time to get some honest answers. As things get even more complicated a real bombshell is about to fall into their laps." The usual disclaimers apply. The characters and 'Firefly' are the property and gift of Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. No infringement of copyright is intended.


"Firefly" story

Written by Alison M. DOBELL

* * * * *

It was hard to curb the excitement and Simon was realising that any notion he had that he could control his wife was nothing but a complete and utter fallacy. Watching her alight with joyful anticipation made his heart lurch and expand with so much love he could barely contain himself. As he watched her fidget and dance around the Captain he could not help smiling, understanding how it was that she had Serenity's Captain and every member of the crew wrapped around her little finger.

The Captain was smiling. *Diyu*, Simon would not have been surprised to find the ship was smiling! "Okay now Kaylee, remember we don't gotta stay on long, *dong ma*? There'll be plenty of time for talkin' 'til the sun don't shine when we get to Carousel."

"*Wo zhidao*, Cap'n." Said Kaylee in frustration. "Just let me get to the screen. I'm dyin' here."

Smirking, the Captain said something into the cortex link then vacated his seat. Kaylee pretty much tumbling into it in her haste to talk to her folks. Mrs Frye was laughing, one hand stretched out to touch the screen as if it would make Kaylee solid and real. Her father came into view behind her mother, his quiet joy making Kaylee's heart turn over with emotion. Simon was standing a couple of paces back, not wanting to intrude on the family moment. Little Charlotte Anne wriggling in his arms to vie for his attention.

"Kaylee honey, you okay? When Mal waved us I was sure somethin' awful had gone wrong..."

The mechanic was crying but really, it was joy not sorrow. Her heart too full to overflowing to contain everything she was feeling. "No ma, I'm shiny! Just wanted to talk to you an' daddy, tell ya we're comin' visitin' is all."

The shrewd eyes of Martin Frye noticed that Kaylee's fella was keeping well back. "Hey boy, ya gonna stick your face in view or I gotta come up there an' drag ya to the screen? Not too proud to talk to Kaylee's folks are ya?"

Blushing, Simon stepped into view and Martin Frye's teasing words trailed off as he caught a glimpse of the bundle of new life wriggling in the doctor's arms. "*Wode ma*, ya been an' had kids an' us not knowin'?"

"It's okay, pa." Kaylee rushed. "She ain't born outta wedlock. That's kind'a why we're comin' to see ya."

Her parents exchanged a look. Out of sight of the cortex link, Malcolm Reynolds rested his forehead on the forefinger and middle finger of his right hand as if he had a headache coming on. Closed his eyes and sighed. This was not how he had imagined his *mei mei* telling her folks about the baby let alone the fact that she was married. *Tianna*, would nothing go smooth? With a little shake of his head, the Captain opened his eyes and slipped off the bridge leaving Kaylee and Simon to explain.

* * * * *

Inara was happy for Kaylee, really she was. The girl's joy was not adding to her own restlessness. As much as she kept telling herself that it was hard to calm herself down, her own emotional state anything but serene. Taking a sachet of tea from the drawer her mind was all kinds of distracted as she tore the top off, not noticing in time how her hand shook until the tea scattered all over the floor. None of it going where she intended. Biting back tears of frustration, Inara swore and leant on the counter.

She blamed the spill for not hearing the Captain enter the commons room, his voice making her jump and her heart thunder at a reckless pace she tried to counter. But no inward calm would slow that frantic beat, and the air in her lungs was straining to replenish what she had lost on hearing his voice.

"*Wei*, you okay? Look a mite pale."

Not able to cope with a kindly word Inara reached for anger and irritation. "Do you have to startle people like that? Now you've made me spill my tea."

The Captain raised a brow, not mentioning that he put his head through the door after the spill. If Inara was happier blaming him then so be it. Right now the last thing he wanted was to make her angry or defensive. "*Duibuqi*. To be honest I'm kind'a glad to find you alone. Need to talk to you."

Inara was crouched down, brushing up the leaves of tea. "As you can see I'm busy, Captain, perhaps you could come back later?"

Tempted as he was to laugh the Captain managed to keep a straight face, his voice carefully not showing the flash of humour. In her current mood she was like to brain him with a teapot if he so much as cracked a smile. "Nope, don't reckon I can."

The Companion tried to think of something to put him off, but as he stood up the Captain crossed the room to her side. "I'm thinkin' need some help is all."

Help? Malcolm Reynolds, the most stubborn, stiff necked and independent *baichi* in all the known 'verse was asking for help? From her? The shock telegraphed like an electrical current startling a bubble of laughter from deep within the Captain. Inara's eyes narrowed but Mal started talking before she could shoot him down in flames.

"Little Kaylee is so excited. You should see her 'Nara, all a-bustle an' full to overflowin' with happy." The Captain paused just a touch, a seriousness edging the smile on his face and making her breath catch. "Don't want nothin' goin' *cuode, dong ma*? Need to be all kinds of happy for 'em, no long faces." The dime dropped. She wanted to be angry at the very suggestion that she might put a dampening effect on Kaylee's family reunion. Not that the Captain meant it that way, but it was so much easier to project anger than let him see what she was really feeling. One little glimpse at the emotions she was hiding and she would break. "What were you planning?"

"We'll be landin' in a couple'a days. Kaylee an' Simon want to be married on Carousel with their folks, reckon with a preacher to speak over 'em. A mighty fine shindig with fancy food an' such."

"I'm not sure what you want me to do, Mal. I would imagine Kaylee's family will have everything pretty much in hand by the time we land."

The Captain nodded. "An' so they will but it's not that I'm thinkin' on." Now she was baffled. Her irritation with the Captain forgotten. "It isn't?"

"*Bu qu*. I wanna do somethin' for 'em, somethin' special. Was hopin' you could help me come up with somethin'."

"You mean a wedding present?"

The Captain flushed just a little. Inara thought it made him look even more *shuai* than normal. It was not often that anyone got to see the lighter side of the Captain. "No, not that. I was thinkin' of a honeymoon or somesuch."

Inara's eyebrows rose in surprise. "What did you have in mind?"

"Gorramit 'Nara, if I knew that would I be askin'?"

She smiled before she could stop herself. "You do know that Carousel is very rural, Mal? There are no beaches, no tourist spots, no..."

The Captain could feel his good humour evaporating with irritation. "Don't wanna know what it don't got!"

"Mal," The Companion spoke smoothly, her voice cool. "You asked for my help."

He swallowed slowly and made himself calm down. "*Duibuqi*, just.... wanna make this special is all."

"We will."

The softening of her voice brought his head up, eyes locking on hers so quickly she had no chance to school her expression. In that split second he saw the fabrication of manners for the artifice it was. Inara's expression hardened but too late. Closing the gap the Captain moved so close that her every breath was an intoxication he could not live without. "Inara..."

Her heart was speeding up too fast. This was not supposed to be happening. "Mal, we can't..."

"Can't what?" His words sighed like sweet torment fanning her face. Before Inara could step away those mocking lips were caressing hers. His warm masculine scent inveigling its' way through her defences. His nearness sparking a response she could not deny. The kiss deepening softly, coaxing and tempting her to respond as the Captain inhaled her breath into his lungs, giving his own in exchange. Inara found herself kissing back, her thoughts a-whirl with all the reasons why this was such a bad idea but her body wasn't listening. Her heart reaching out for the one thing she wanted above all else. The one thing her profession had denied her for so long.


He spoke between mouthfuls as he kissed her, his eyes half closed and hooded with desire. "I love you, 'Nara. Always have."

"You don't know what you're saying." Inara murmured, her mind in a delicious spiral of delerium. Maybe his madness was contagious? It would explain so much.

"Do too," He whispered back, voice low and hoarse with desire. Wickedly sinful lips making her sigh, his warm hands spread around her back heating up the base of her spine. Inara melding close to him, hips framed, hands roaming as her body fitted so gloriously to his. Every move mirrored so as to keep contact, their bodies slowly arching into each other as lips and hands increased the want and need building between them. "Need you, 'Nara."

Inara was trying to shake her head but Mal was not having that. Not now, not when he had seen through that expert mask of hers. The heat between them was damn near combustible. With a low moan Inara felt her resistance completely crumble. Her body feeling boneless and wanton, her desire like a flare of heat whipping through her nerve endings. Giving full rein to her passion it was now the Captain's turn to moan, Inara writhing sensuously against him, drawing a gasp from deep within his chest. Her hand dipping between their gyrating bodies to tease him until he could scarce think straight.

"*Wode ma* woman, what you doin' to me?" He murmured, his voice breaking.

The sound of his fragmenting control sent a glorious shiver of want down her spine and Inara knew she could wait no longer. It took every bit of effort she could muster to ease her lips away from his just far enough to speak. "Not here, Mal."

He was dazed, his libedo already out of control. "Huh?"

Then Inara was pulling him, guiding him with touches, shoves, kisses and a jumble of words that made his head spin. No sooner had they reached her shuttle than his shirt was ripped open. Buttons popping off as Inara kicked off her shoes, the Captain oblivious to the slamming of her door or the frantic race to disrobe each other. Blood pounding in his ears Mal simply went with the flow, his body clamouring for her and hardly registering the almost rough grip of her hands as Inara reached for him. Groaning almost continually now the Captain slid his right hand down her writhing belly to find the Companion moist, her exotic juices already flooding over his fingers. Gorramit, she was so hot, so ready for him that there was no time for finesse. Inara didn't want that, couldn't stand the slow build up to passion that would bring her crying as she came. That would take patience she did not have. The delay unacceptable. Inara wanted this rough and fast, her need too sharp, too craving for his touch to wait.

With a soundless cry, Mal felt as if the air was squashed out of his lungs as Inara grabbed him with a firm unyielding grip, her hand flexing round him and riding his foreskin until he was weeping in her hand. Inara broke the kiss and bit into his shoulder startling an inarticulate cry just as she impaled herself on him. The Captain wanted to slow down so they could take their time but it wasn't what she wanted. Rough and demanding though was a turn on too and Mal rode her as hard as she demanded, pounding into her again and again as she thrust back and forth along his slick adamantine length, both of them shining with perspiration and unable to form words as they raced to the precipice. Lost to their passion, sensation was everything. Mal could feel himself getting so close, wanted Inara to come with him. Dropping his hand back to her moist centre he felt for the bundle of nerves that would bring her to completion.

Inara gasped and bit down again, harder this time. Her hips jerking as he continued to thrust, his fingers dancing around and across her clitoris bringing her higher and higher as his balls tightened. Her legs wrapped around his waist, heels digging in, the pair of them fused together and rocking erratically now as they hit the crescendo. Exploding into ecstasy, their cries fragmenting as passion shattered in an intense tidal wave of feeling. The release so powerful that for minutes afterwards neither could move or speak. Inara clung to him, her thighs a vice holding him in place while she savoured him inside her. Feeling a sense of loss when he softened but reluctant to move, to break this most intimate of connections.

It took a little while for Mal to open his eyes but when he did they were twinkling, miniature suns of happiness bathing her in a warmth too precious for words. Even denying to herself that she loved this crazy man was a lost cause now and they both knew it. The soft gentle smile and tender look in Malcolm Reynold's eyes startled a tear. Alarmed, Mal gently raised a hand to touch her shining cheek. "*Xin gan*, somethin' *cuode*?"

She shook her head, scattering new tears like raindrops. Baptising him in a joy that had no name. "No, just *gaoxing, bao bei*."

The Captain's smile deepened. Tenderly he kissed her, eyes crinkling at the corners. "This what you were plannin' for Kaylee an' Simon?" "I would hope," Said Inara, trying for a semi serious tone and failing partly because she was still a mite breathless from their love making. "That Charlotte proves they are passed the basics."

Mal drew back and looked at her in mock indignation. "Basics? You call that gorram basic?"

Inara chuckled lightly before adopting an innocent look, one hand gently meandering trails across his sweat slicked chest, enjoying the freedom to touch him how and when she pleased. The Captain found it all kinds of distracting, but then the gorram woman had always known how to get his attention and now she was doing it again. Using her gorram wiles. Only this time he was all appreciative of the attention. Willing to give her anything and everything she wanted until the breath in his body was gone. *Diyu*, seems it had taken his rutting strength with it. But then Inara was whispering endearments in his ear. The one Niska had cut off and their shiny doc had reattached. It was so damn sensitive and Inara knew it, or maybe the way his body reacted and squirmed was a give away. Whatever. Her tongue laved the seal, her breath shivering down the ear canal, his body stirring. Languid movements replacing the frantic desire of moments before.

Oh yeah. She was going to rutt him to death and right now Mal would have paid with everything he possessed for the gorram privilege.

* * * * *

On the bridge, River smiled. Her thoughts a happy amalgum of hearts and minds now in synch. Love an intoxicating harbringer of good times to come. She closed her eyes to savour it, not to touch, to disturb or to watch but to approve. A deep satisfaction in the pit of her being like the one she felt every time she thought of her brother and Kaylee. Her smile deepened then vanished. Eyes springing open. Another window in her mind activated by something less thrilling. It would have been so easy to activate the com, to warn them, but that would not be the smart thing to do and River Tam was very very smart.

* * * * *

"Two days, *shifu*."

Mr Turner did not nod but looked at his counterpart. "We can take them in the air."

He thought about that option then shook his head. "No. A lesson needs to be given. It will make the result worth the effort expended."

"Destruction or retrieval?"

His partner did not smile but there was a dark hideous pleasure in the single word he uttered. As if it carried the weight of worlds. "Both."

* * * * *

*This is bad*

The sluggish mind stirred, as if moving through treacle only the treacle was fighting back. Clinging to every inch he tried to pry away from with his will. *Bad?*

*They are in danger*

The thought that was Wash felt dazed, drawn out and thin as if his consciousness was being stretched. With a jolt he realised something anchored him across an unfathomable expanse. *What is this?*

*The equivalent of an umbical chord*

Wash sounded shocked and stunned. *I have an umbical chord?*

*Usually it breaks on physical death*

That one was too hard to unravel. Wash just waited for more information, hoping he would understand it when it came. Already he was beginning to feel as if he had been on the biggest drunken bender of his life.

*Less the silver chord be broken and the golden bowl shattered* Book quoted.

That didn't help Wash's understanding one bit but then he was a dead man, what in the nine hells did he know?

*Not diyu*. Book murmured mind to mind, thought to thought, consciousness to gorram consciousness. He knew Wash was confused and accepted it as the coin of education. Every journey began with a single step even the metaphorical ones.

*So*, Wash thought, feeling a little more substantial as he strove to grasp some kind of meaning out of this oddest of discourses. *Who's in trouble?*

* * * * *

Joshua stirred. Not in the slow awakening that comes after a restful sleep but with a jolt as if his heartbeat was fired from a gun. The shock made him cry, the crying woke his mother. Immediately alert, Zoe took her boy from his cradle. Alarmed to see tears on his face and something akin to panic in her child's eyes. "Hush, Joshua, come on sweetie it's alright."

Warm hands reached for him and part of Joshua felt that deep joy and safety he always felt in her arms but something else was filling him with a nameless fear. As Zoe rocked him she began to worry. He was not calming now, hardly reassured at all. Thinking something medical must be wrong, she did not check the time, but wrapped him then threw a nightgown on. Not even stopping for shoes, Zoe picked up her precious son and went to find Simon.

* * * * *

Some things never got old. Giggling at Simon's response, Kaylee could not resist the teasing. Tongue, teeth, hands, mouth, anything to help drive her shiny *zhangfu* completely and utterly out of his mind.

"Kaylee!" He gasped, body arching up off the bed as her intimate touch brought him out of a deep sleep.

"Uh huh, ya want somethin', *fengmi*?"

Her nonchalence was the only clue he needed that she was doing it on purpose. It took a couple of tries for him to get his breath. His wife was evil. "That isn't funny, Kaylee, I was asleep."

Kaylee gave her most innocent smile, the one that told him he had better watch out because she had much better artillery in her arsenal. "But Simon, practice makes perfect."

"We already have a baby, Kaylee, and much as I love Charlotte to death I would like to get some sleep tonight."

Her smile was pure wicked seduction. Simon felt his breath catch. Gorramit how did anyone say no to Kaylee?

* * * * *

"What is happening?"

The navigator took a moment before replying, his attention much sharper than it had been a moment before. "The ship is making a course correction."

"Correction? There is nothing out here."

The two hands of blue exchanged a look. Mr Turner focused on the navigator's screen. "You said they were two days out from Carousel?"


"Perhaps they have just adjusted their trajectory, drifted a little off course."

The navigator shook his head, rechecking the calculations of the new trajectory. Tiny little course corrections occuring every few minutes. It was *odd*. "Um, I don't think they're going to Carousel, sir." For a long time no one spoke, all eyes glued to the navigation screen. State of the art equipment making the calculations and plotting the new course. It would not be obvious to anyone not in direct pursuit of the vessel to notice the change. Mr Turner wondered if that was deliberate. Whether the wave to Carousel had been to throw them off the scent. But how could that be unless they knew they were being followed? As he straightened an emotionless smile settled on his face. Dark, cold satisfaction seeping into every pore. Of course. River Tam was a reader. This was better than good. This was perfect. It was confirmation that their target was on that ship and aware of them. With a nod to the navigator, he watched as they matched each tiny correction, the only important thing in their minds was that scruffy little transport ship.

* * * * *

CHINESE GLOSSARY: (Mandarin - Pinyin)

*diyu* = hell *dong ma* = understand? *wo zhidao* = I know *duibuqi* = sorry *wode ma* = mother of God *tianna* = oh God! *mei mei* = little sister *wei* = hey *baichi* = idiot *cuode* = wrong *bu qu* = no (lit. no go) *shuai* = snazzy/handsome *xin gan* = sweetheart *gaoxing* = happy *bao bei* = precious/treasure *shifu* = sir *zhangfu* = husband *fengmi* = honey *qu* = yes (lit. go)


Saturday, July 8, 2006 5:17 AM


Awww, Kaylee and Simon trying to explain their make shift wedding and the Frye's new grandchild, what a fun conversation! And I loved the Mal/Inara interaction! Great installment and looking forward to your next post!

Saturday, July 8, 2006 5:38 AM


Ohh, great chapter. The Mal/Inara stuff was nice and hot and I didn't expect it! I saw the rating and thought 'Oh, yay, more S/K!' Glad M/I relieved a bit of that tension finally! River grinning on the bridge was just perfect.

Kaylee waking Simon up because she wanted to play was great too! And telling her parents about the baby and marriage. Looking forward to see what is planned for that.

Of course there's going to be some trouble ahead. . . it always follows our BDH's!

Monday, July 10, 2006 9:58 AM


Boo-freaking-yeah! Finally! And it was the Captain with his mainly wiles that did the job!?! Oh yeah...giggity giggity, Capt. Tightpants:D

And where is River leading the HoBs, I wonder....somewhere desolate, I hope:S



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His head still ached from the rutting probe but after the men had satisfied themselves that his story was true a thousand questions peppered the air like machine gun fire.

The vessel was shiny, sleek and black with nowhere near the bulk of an Alliance ship. Something about the way it moved through the Black was more than a little creepifying.

Personally she didn't care if Serenity was towed off to a junk yard and stripped into spare parts. She had promised the ship to Jer and his crew as a bonus but it looked like scavengers had beaten them to it.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS: 2. "Counting Chickens"
The fact that her eyes were hard and sharp with intelligence kind of chilled him. Smart women always made him uneasy, it just weren't natural.

What in the nine hells were they so afraid of? Then he remembered Tracy. The body mailed to them by their old war buddy and all the trouble that had brought down on them.

If it was too gorram wet to hunt for rabbits what in the nine hells was his son really hunting? And was it something on four legs or two?

The man was in a terrible condition, his pulse weak, and for some reason he was soaking wet which did nothing to staunch the blood soaking through his clothing and seeping from the poorly tended wound where he had been shot.

THE DICHOTOMY SERIES: 9. "All The King's Men"
The man sighed like the weight of the of the 'Verse was on his shoulders but unlike anyone else he looked like he could carry the weight.

THE DICHOTOMY SERIES: 8. "All The King's Horses"
Without warning something came through the opening and rolled with a metallic clang across the ground before exploding.

THE DICHOTOMY SERIES: 7. "Friend or Foe"
Then he found himself falling, the whole world silent as in slow motion the hordes of *diyu* came to swallow him up and everything disintegrated in fire, blood and pain.