The Song of Metal
Sunday, May 25, 2008

part twenty-nine as we start to feel out the real Cat and her 'other' side...thanks all of you for reading and for all your wonderful and helpful insight...As we go on...Cat dances on.


The Song of Metal

----------------------------------------------- based on the world of Firefly by Joss Whedon

Silver flashed as the light reflected across the shadowy bulkheads, invading the darkness as it retreated for a second, only to return when the light had disappeared. Hums announced the song of metal as it filled the cargo bay with the sound of battle, but the only battle here was one of sheer will.

Cat, her body cleaned from a shower and a fresh change of tank top and mid-thigh shorts, moved with the rhythm of the two swinging blades gripped deep in her slender hands. Each was around two feet long, the lamps catching the razor sharp edge. The swords were nothing special, no perfect balance or ornate handles, just common weapons used for an uncommon purpose.

Her long legs carried her across the floor in the oddest and deadliest dance anyone on the ship had ever seen. Graceful did not even touch what Cat was, her lithe body stretching to its fullest as she drew the blades around and over her head. Green eyes closed as her other senses took over, the touch of the cold metal, the hum of the ship's engines, and the smell of oil and grease. Like a dancer who knew each step of her routine, Cat twisted, stretched, and spun as silent music seduced her to its own song.

Jayne looked on, his eyes opened wide at the now quite hot woman playing sensual in the middle of the bay. He had been cleaning Vera, the large gun he had used to help save Mal and this Cat from the purple bellies, but had stopped when he had seen her. "Likin' what you see?" 'Ski, above on the catwalk to the bridge, called down.

"Aren't you? I thought she was summin' when I seen her fighin, but I wouldn't mind seeing what kind of beast she is in..."

"That's enough, Jayne." Mal spoke, emerging slowly from the infirmary, his hand holding the bandage near his stomach.

Jayne jumped up and almost lost Vera in his shuffle. "Mal, I didn't see ya there."

"Didn't reckon ya did." His eyes looked tired, but no one could deny the strength that was there.

"Nice to see you up, Mal." 'Ski spoke as the Captain cast a look his way before returning his gaze to the beauty in the middle of his cargo bay.

"What's our location?"

"Been flying about three days now. Should hit Santo's atmo in twelve hours."

"Thanks, 'Ski." Mal didn't have to say more 'Ski could read it all through just that statement.

Cat had stopped, her body standing with the long swords crisscross in front of her, sweat dripping down her bare legs and arms, and making the long red hair cling to her neck and face. Her chest heaved up and down, panting from the work out, her skin around her neck and the ample cleavage the red tank top allowed glistening in the lights.

Her green eyes opened, the dull glow present only for a second as the enhanced mind slowly emerged back to reality. The swords dropped from their places, swung down by her tired arms. This workout should not have tired her so, but as she let her senses return to normal, the strong muscles began to tighten as she willed them to remain loose. It was then she noticed her audience.

'Ski smiled and turned from her headed back to the bridge, her sentinel as he knew she was dangerously unguarded when she let herself go. Jayne, the ship's muscle, the smell of musk and lust emanating from his body like the sweat was from hers. Lastly, Mal...Mal?!

“What are you doing up?” She let the swords fall to the floor as her long legs, slightly stiff carried her to his side.

“Bed is for children. This ain't nuttin'.” He smiled at her and let his lips kiss her, drawing in the beautiful beast as he wrapped a good arm around her waist.

“Simon's gonna throw a fit.” She muttered between kisses as he ventured down to her neck and the base of her collarbone.

“Let 'em.” He smiled as the clearing of a throat stopped him. “I see you're up and moving around, Sir.” Zoe nodded as Mal turned to her.

“You could say I am.” He smiled, grimacing a bit as he placed a hand on Cat to balance himself. Zoe nodded to Cat before continuing.

“We're destined for Santo for refueling and resupply, then it's off to wherever we can find work, Sir.”

“Cap'n,” Kaylee chirped from the other catwalk as she raced to hug Mal gently. Simon followed after and only shook his head. Each one made him feel loved and home, but to Cat, she did not belong. These had stories to tell, jokes to laugh at, and tears to shed over deaths that should not have been. She tried to slip off and escape the warm feelings that were surrounding her, but Mal's arm head firm.

“You never listen to me.” The doctor smiled, examining the bandage and making sure it wasn't seeping any. “Should be in bed.”

“I'm fine. Don't understand what all this fuss is about.”

“Could be the fact we almost lost you. Gave us quite a scare.” Cat smiled, placing a hand on his chest.

“Got shot up plenty in the war. Never had either you or Zoe go nuts.”

“You're older now. Sir.” Zoe spoke as Mal looked wounded.

“You act like I got one foot in the grave.”

“Another shot like that to your belly and you'll have both feet.” Simon added.

“You feel the same way they do?” Mal turned to Cat. “I see you are feeling better, Mal.” A soft voice interrupted as Inara added her beauty to the mix of misfits. Her long golden gown sparkled in the lights like the metal from Cat's swords. She looked gorgeous, not like the scared woman from the complex, but proud and strong like the Companion she was. Her beautiful eyes held Mal's and for the first time since Cat had come back to him, she felt completely out of place at his side. “Thanks to all of you.” He smiled at her, a gentle look masking his pain from her and the rest of the crew. Cat read through it and she knew by the look on Zoe's face, the warrior woman had too.

“Think you might want to go back to bed, Sir.” Zoe said as he nodded at her.

“Right.” Mal looked to each of them slowly, stopping the longest on Inara and then Cat. Her mind forced her to hold back the tears forming as she tried not to think he had replaced her and the rest of her calmed the monster who wanted nothing more than to feel the companion's blood run over her hands as she slit the milky white throat. “Can I at least go to my own room?”

“I think moving you that much and that soon might open the wound again. By the time we leave Santo, I'll be comfortable enough for that.” Simon knew the captain did not like being on display, at least not when it involved him in a weakened state.

"Guess I can handle that." Mal smiled weakly, the small amount of strength he had almost spent. Cat and Zoe helped him back to the hospital bed as Inara brought over a plate of food. She smelled like jasmine and sandalwood, a sweet and earthy smell that tickled even Cat's nose.

Like a shadow she could be, Cat disappeared from the room, her presence seeming out of place in the mix of Zoe and Inara, and even Zoe made herself scarce. Laughter came from the room as she sat down on the steps, her green eyes reflecting in the window as she watched the pair talk.

“You are scared,” River stated coming down the steps to sit next to Cat. She smelled of 'Ski and the bridge, of Simon and Kaylee and of the food being eaten by all.

“Nothing gets past you, does it?” Cat sighed and River cast a glance into the infirmary. “They seem so happy. Why did I ever think of coming back?”

“Because he will never love her like he does you.” The young psychic grinned wide as she let the dress hanging by her legs brush back and forth.

“That may be, but she also won't rip his throat out in his sleep either.”

“Maybe that's the appeal. Danger.”

“If I didn't know better, Sister, I'd say you're talking sane.”

“I have my moments.” The innocent grin that seemed infectious lit her face and she stood up to jump down each step 'till the bottom. River then picked up the swords Cat had dropped and began to dance.

Jayne, still polishing Vera, stopped to watch River and then turned toward Cat. “You and know there's a battle comin'. Don'tcha?!”


“You gonna need help.” It was a statement and not a question. “Any money involved?”

“Could make it worth a person's while.”

“That a fact.” The big man scrubbed the gun even harder, humming to himself as Cat just let her mind clear.

'Ski watched as the stars poured over Serenity, almost like water bubbles over a submarine. He hummed to himself, a tune that he had no idea where it came from, but it calmed him so he continued. A noise behind him made the tune stop.

Kaylee, her brown hair pulled up and wrapped in a bun, held in place by a long chopstick. She smiled at him and waved, taking the other seat. “It's shiny what you're doin'.”

“A favor is all.” He stated, trying to dissuade her from a real conversation.

“You pilot Serenity really good.” She looked at him.”We need a pilot.”

“Not interested.”

“Why not?! No ship better in the 'verse than this.” Kaylee fondly rubbed the console.

“I don't want a ship. Don't want a crew and ain't really lookin' to belong to anyone.”

“You just haven't found the right place is all.” She smiled and even 'Ski couldn't deny she lit up the room.

“Like I said before, not interested.”

“That's what they all say. Seems to me like you already made a home here, Cat and you. The way the Cap'n favors her...”

“And that doesn't bother you.”

“You mean 'cuz him and 'Nara.” Kaylee took out a piece of gum from her pocket and put it in her mouth. “They'll work it out. Cap'n's shiny like that.”

“I have met some very cheerful people in my day, Girl, and you got to be the worst.” 'Ski shook his head as she laughed and then turned to leave.

“You'll end up on this ship as our pilot. Watch and see.” The mechanic could be heard walking away. She was almost gone when 'Ski heard her again. “Oh, hi ya, Cat.”

Within minutes, his partner strolled in and he could smell the sweat on her as well as her normal sweet scent. It had been something only after a few years ago had he noticed. Sometimes, her presence would stir the belly, other times it was just the thought she was near. Mostly, it was just there and made it hard for her to sneak up on him.

“Bad day with your captain?” he spoke, the mood of the room falling from the cheeriness of Kaylee to the darkness of Cat.

“Inara.” The name was enough, even though with it came the growl he was use to.

“We going alone when we get to Santo.” He tapped the glass to make sure it was giving an accurate reading before looking over to her.

“Can't risk his crew.” She sounded distant as the green eyes stared at the stars. “He's better off without me.”

“Does he know this?”

“You and I both know I'm losing control. Eventually, there will be nothing to stop me and trapped on this makeshift prison is only gonna make matters worse.”

“I've noticed you're not healing or sleeping.”

“I thought it was because I was worried for Mal, but then I saw Inara and Mal together. All I wanted to do was kill her because he was mine. Then, I got past that and all I could do is think of...” She paused for a second, her eyes glowing, but 'Ski wasn't sure whether it was the lights in the bridge or her own. “” --------------------------------------------

*Comment are always welcome.

*thanks to AMDOBELL and Werzbowski for the beta read.


Sunday, May 25, 2008 8:23 AM


Brilliant! Really good and can't wait for the next part but oh what a tangle with Cat's feelings for Mal (and Ski too) and the Captain's feelings for both Cat and Inara. Talk about the 'cat' among the pigeons! Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Sunday, May 25, 2008 8:32 AM


No man, you're confusing me! I don't even know if Cat should end up with Mal or 'Ski anymore! Imho Mal and Inara never would have suited anyways.

Glad Mal's better though! :)

Enjoyed it as always, please keep 'em coming!

Sunday, May 25, 2008 1:49 PM


“If I didn't know better, Sister, I'd say you're talking sane.”

“I have my moments.”

Sunday, May 25, 2008 1:50 PM


I meant to add something to that before it jumped off. I really like that line, I like Cat's interaction with River.

Sunday, May 25, 2008 4:21 PM


I'll remark again on how much I enjoy reading you're writing... I'm getting almost as tangled up in your story as mal's feelings seem to be... Amazing stuff, makes me sit on the edge of my seat...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 8:52 AM


This keeps getting better and better... River seems to be drawn to Cat, part of me thinks that if Cat and Ski leave, so will River...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 9:03 AM


Sweet! Real emotion here, love it!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 3:01 PM


Caught up again. Fic just keeps gettin' better and better! The tension between Cat and 'Ski can be nearly smelled now.


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