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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
The prodigal father returns...sorta
Belongs to somebody not me. Blah blah blah, yackety schmackety.
Please to comment. Good. Bad. Whatever.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 782 RATING: 10 SERIES: FIREFLY
Title: Prodigal Father
Disclaimer: Belongs to somebody not me. Blah blah blah, yackety schmackety.
AN: This is focused more on Mal’s two children.
Derrial Wash Reynolds was bored. Which, really, for a 9-year-old, didn’t take much.
How many different paper umbrella venders did one market need, really? Derry would have much rather been allowed to go with his Pa and Aunt Zoe to watch them seal the deal on the latest job.
But instead, Carly had been put in charge of him. Which meant him getting dragged through the market to all the stalls that sold girly stuff. And then have to be Carly’s personal mule. Last time that happened, he came out all stinky from perfume that she sprayed on him as a joke.
Really funny. Not.
This time, however, he might have some good ammo to store up against his big sister, who was currently making mooney-eyes at some boy who ran the tea booth. Derry couldn’t wait to rat her out if she tried the perfume stunt again.
Oh man, that’d be sweet, if she got herself busted for flirting with a boy. He could just imagine Pa and Uncle Jayne giving that kid the thrashing of his life. And Carly confined to the ship for at least the next two stops planetside. She’d be madder’n a hornet’s nest.
In truth, he adored Carly, even if she was lately being a pain in the pi-gu. Auntie River told him it’s because she’s becoming a woman. All he knows is that lately, she’d rather spend her time sighing over pretty clothes and stupid pimply-faced boys. Oh, she was still one helluva shot and could drop him with a leg sweep when the mood took her, but it was all the girly stuff that was getting to him.
Derry hoped he’d never get that mooney over a girl. Nope, he’d play it all cool and smooth, rather than be some slackjawed sucker. He still didn’t get the attraction of girls, even though Auntie Kaylee ribbed him constantly that he’d be beating the girls off with a stick in just a few years.
He was getting fidgety, having now sniffed every one of the tea samples at least three times so far, while Carly was busy batting her lashes and sticking out her chest for the skinny boy behind the counter. The whole point of it was lost on Derry.
At that moment, an older man walked in. Clearly Core-bred, from the fancy fits and the shiny boots. Derry gave him a quick glance, long enough to wonder how long it would take before the muddy street would ruin that spit-shine on those glossy black boots, and went back to being terminally bored.
At first, the man didn’t seem to notice Derry. He was opening the various jars and smelling the teas, seeming not to be able to decide between two of them. He turned toward Derry, who had his back to the fancy fellow.
“Say, lad, care to help me pick out a tea? Which one of these is your favorite?”
Derry rolled his eyes. Stuck-up Core dandies, thinkin’ anybody without their money is some sorta charity case in the makin’, just waitin’ for a handout. And his Pa had told him that they didn’t take handouts. Still, he was stuck here, long as Carly kept on making googly-eyes at that kid.
“Well, Mister, I like jasmine best.”
Derry finally raised his eyes to look at the man, who was giving him a very odd look. Almost sad, sorta.
“What’s your name, son?”
Man didn’t seem snooty, more sorta regretful. Like his Pa did about his Ma, when he thought Derry didn’t notice.
“Derrial. Derrial Wash Reynolds.”
The man looked even sadder and lost in some sort of memory that Derry wasn’t sure he should ask about. He sorta felt sorry for the guy
“Reynolds, you say? That your last name?”
“Well, Master Reynolds, I shall take your sound advice on the tea. And I have something for you.”
Derry’s spine stiffened. Here it comes. The toff was gonna try and give him a few meager coins to buy off his guilty expensive conscience.
The man noticed the flash of pride in Derry’s eyes.
“No, son, not money. Something, I think, worth much more.”
With that, he handed Derry a small flat envelope.
“Open it later.”
At that instant, Derry could hear the unmistakable sound of his Pa and Aunt Zoe coming toward the stall at a fast trot, which could only mean that they were trying to beat it back to Serenity fast enough to not have the local constabulary nab them, but not so fast as to attract their attention. Mal stopped long enough at the tea booth to holler for his two children.
“OK, Derry, Carly-girl! Saddle up. Time to go, double-quick.
Derry sighed, being used to this sort of an exit, picked up the various purchases from the market and turned around to say goodbye to the strangely sad Core fellow. However, he seemed to have vanished. Derry shrugged, and followed in line behind Carly, who was currently on the receiving end of a fire-and-brimstone lecture from Pa about the lustful ways of teen-aged boys.
Later that night, after everyone else had gone to bed, Derry fished out the envelope and carefully unsealed the flap. A small, yellowed photo fell out. It was a picture of a man that he swore coulda been Pa, except the photo looked too old. The man was holding a small baby.
Derry turned over the photograph. On the back, in neat printing, was written: “Charles and Malcolm Reynolds (age 3 months)”
Sunday, November 11, 2007 3:57 AM
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