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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
This is a collection of short scenes in the family life of Master Adam Reynolds of Serenity. Warning: Wall-to-wall fluff ahead. Enter at your own risk.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 581 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
Malcolm Reynolds undeniably loved the freedom of the Black. And if anyone had bothered to ask, he would have said that he had not plans to ever live dirtside again, as least as long as there were governments like the Alliance, or even piss-ant local government hundans to interfere with a man’s freedom and family.
But when he looked at Adam, crawling around energetically and testing the limits of his newfound freedom, he couldn’t help but remember the days of his own youth on Shadow. The feel of sunlight on his skin, a soft breeze fragrant with the flowers that grew abundantly on the ranch. The coarse sand between his toes by the bank, just before he’d take a dip in the cool peace of the river that ran through his mama’s land. And he wanted his son to feel those sensations for himself.
To that end, he began to choose jobs that might take them to places where the children could play off-ship for awhile. This was a mite tricky, he thought, as their jobs were rarely what he’d call family-friendly. But on this day, he had managed to pull it off, and his crew was enjoying a real picnic by a real river under a real shade tree.
Anya, having scarfed down her protein bars and an apple as quickly as humanly possible, was wading out into the water to the sound of Zoe’s constant reminders not to go too far. Jayne and Inara, still very private in their affections, had wandered off along the shoreline out of sight, most likely to do some things they could scarcely do in front of children. Simon and Kaylee were swimming a short distance away, in the deeper water of the river.
River sat between Mal’s legs as he leaned against the old tree, her back resting comfortably against his chest as they watched Adam. He sat in the shallow water, naked as he came into the ‘verse, and splashing delightedly, little crows of laughter escaping in the warm air.
“This was a good idea, ai ren,” River said lazily. “Everyone’s having such a good time.”
“Uhm huhm.” Mal said, smiling at the antics of his son, who was now busily scooping handfuls of wet sand onto everything within his reach, including his mother’s toes.
River wiggled her sandy toes, sending Adam into peals of laughter.
“We made us a beautiful child, didn’t we, darlin’?” Mal whispered in her ear.
“Yes, we did, ai ren,” she agreed, her heart filled with the joy radiating from her entire family.
K—Killdeers and Kisses
Zoe was taking a rare late afternoon nap under the shade of the old tree where the crew had enjoyed their picnic earlier, and Simon and Kaylee were drying in the sun from their swim just a little farther down the riverbank.
No one had seen Jayne or Inara since lunch, but Mal was not overly inclined to look for them, as he had a fair idea as to how they might be occupied. So, he sat with Anya on one side and Adam on the other, the latter sprawled out on a soft blanket under another of the huge trees lining the river. He watched River floating effortlessly on the water, taking occasional lazy strokes to propel herself one way or the other. He thought that she looked like a mermaid or a water nymph moving gracefully about. Maybehaps that would account for the spell she had so thoroughly cast over him, he mused, the idea bringing a slight smile to his face.
“Captain Mal,” Anya said excitedly, leaning more closely against his side. “What’s that?”
Mal’s eyes followed the direction of her pointed finger, and saw a little bird running through the grass a few yards away. “It’s a killdeer, Anya,” he answered. “A little bird that likes to make its nest on the ground close to the water.”
“Why does it do that?” she asked.
“Just the way it’s made, I suppose. Birds live by something called instinct, and their habits are already set when they hatch.”
They sat for a moment, watching how the funny little bird ran through the grass on legs that looked impossibly long for its body. “Where’s its nest?” Anya asked after a bit.
“Somewhere close by, I’ll wager, because killdeers never stray far away from their homes.”
“Because if there are little ones in the nest, they have no protection on their own, and the adult killdeers stick around to guard the nest.”
“Like everybody on our ship looks after me and Adam.”
“Yes,” Mal agreed. At the sound of his name, Adam stirred, but settled quickly back into his nap.
As the killdeer disappeared in the taller grass, Anya said, “My daddy watched the birds lots of times. He knew all sorts of stuff ‘bout ‘em, just like you.”
“That so?” Mal said, interested to hear what else Anya might reveal, as the child rarely spoke of her parents.
Not content to simply sit beside him anymore, Anya climbed up into his lap and looked up at him with her piercing blue eyes. “You remind me of my daddy, Captain Mal. I ain’t exactly sure why, on account of you don’t look nothing at all like him, but you maybe act like him a little. I think he’da’ liked you, and you’da’ liked him too, I bet.”
“I’m sure I would have,” Mal said gently. “’Cause even though I never met him, I know there’s one thing we have in common.”
Mal kissed the top of her head. “We both love a little blue-eyed blonde girl name of Anya.”
Anya smiled, revealing the newest gap in her teeth, and wrapping her arms around his neck, gave him a sloppy kiss. “Love you too, Captain Mal,” she whispered happily.
Everyone was back on the ship, relaxed and slightly sunburned. Mal sat at his desk, looking at the captures Kaylee had taken to commemorate the day. One capture particularly caught his attention.
He and River were standing by the shoreline in the bright sun with Adam resting securely on Mal’s hip. Thinking how very beautiful his wife and child looked, he studied his own image a little more critically.
River sat watching the play of emotions on her husband’s face, tempted to read him to discover their meaning. Opting for the more socially acceptable course, she asked softly, “What are you thinking about, ai ren?”
Mal turned his face away from the capture and gave her a quizzical smile. “You mean you haven’t read me yet to find out?”
“I do have some self-control, you know,” River said, smiling wickedly.
“Good to know,” Mal replied with a smile of his own. “To answer your question, I was thinking that I have a lovely young wife and a handsome son.”
“And…” River prompted, knowing there was something more.
Mal reached over and handed her the capture. “Take a good look,” he said. “Notice anything about the man in the capture?”
River smiled. “You mean other than how very swai he is?”
“Look again,” he said. “You see all those wrinkles shining big as life in the sunlight?”
“Malcolm Reynolds, you don’t mean to tell me you’re concerned about a few little lines?”
Mal blushed slightly. “Well, they do stand out. “Specially when I’m holdin’ a child not a year old, and married to a woman looks fresh as a daisy.”
River stood and came to his side, resting her hands lightly on his face. “I love your lines,” she said softly. “They tell your story, and these right here…” She ghosted her fingertips around the corners of his mouth. “I love these most of all.”
“That a fact?” Mal said, leaning into her touch. “And why is that?”
“Because they’re laugh lines,” she said, placing slow, feather-light kisses along the path her fingertips had traveled.
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