Into the Blue -- Chapter 15
Monday, August 4, 2008

Mal hires on that cook he always wanted and Zoe asks Allan an important question.


Into the Blue Chapter 15

Disclaimer: Joss, Fox, Universal Own em’. I’m just playing. No money being made.

This fic takes place just over two years after Serenity (BDM) and has the established couples of Simon/Kaylee, Mal/Inara, Zoë/OC and Jayne/River.

A/N: Thanks again Chris for the Beta.

Into the Blue

Chapter Fifteen – New Crew

“Wanna run that by me again Zoë?” Mal asked.

“Alisha, my sister is upstairs.”

“Alisha, the sister the Alliance took away from you?”

“The same Sir.”

“How did...”

“She was working as a chef on a liner on the Persephone run. Got hit by pirates. Robbed the passengers, killed the men in the crew and selected out all the young women for the markets.”

“Jung chi duh go-se dway!” Swore Mal.

“I didn't get the meaning but I understand the sentiment,” Allan replied.

“Are any of the girls hurt?” Mal asked.

“Alisha has a couple of cracked ribs and has... well let's say she wasn't treated well. Alisha kept the other girls safe. She's a very brave young woman.” Allan replied.

“That's my Sissy,” Zoë said quietly.

“How are they doing with the... stress of what's happened to em',”

“Pretty scared for the most part. Alisha is doing the best so far but I think thats just because Zoë is here,” Allan replied, “The other two, Jenny and Madison are going to need some counciling. Inara's going to help as much as she can.”

“How old are the younger girls?”

“Not sure yet,” Zoë replied, “Seventeen or eighteen I would guess.”

“And your sister?”

“I'm twenty three,” Alisha replied as she depended the stairs.

Mal got his first look at Alisha. She was tall. Not quite as tall as Zoë but nearly so. It was obvious that the girls hadn't been fed much during their captivity. Alisha had the same skin tone as her sister, as well as the same long hair. Alisha's hair wasn't quite as curly as Zoë's but it was obvious to anyone that she was an Allene girl.

Zoë stood and moved to her sisters side, “How are you feeling Mei-mei?”

“Better, the smoother that Allan gave me helps.”

“I'm glad it worked,” Allan said smiling.

Mal and Gabriel had also come to their feet.

“Alisha, I'm Captain Malcolm Reynolds. This is Gabriel Tam, River's father.”

A small smile crossed the young woman's face, “Pleased to meet you both.”

Allan scooted over on the couch to make room for Zoë and her sister, “Can I get you anything to drink Alisha?” he asked.

“I'm fine for the moment Allan, thank you.”

Zoë put her arm around Alisha and smiled. It was hard to imagine the ten year old little girl she knew was now this beautiful young woman.

“Zoë tells me that you're a chef.” Mal said with a slight grin on his face.

“I am Sir,” She replied, I graduated from the Osiris Culinary Academy... top of my class.”

“That is a great achievement,” remarked Gabriel, “The OCA has very high standards.”

“Glad to hear it,” replied Mal, “And Alisha you can call me Mal. Only your sister calls me Sir.”

“Unless you piss me off Sir,” Zoë replied with a grin.

“Unless I piss her off, thats true.”

Alisha giggled.

“So, Alisha, would you be interested in a job?” Mal asked, his grin getting wider.

“Doing what?”

“Ships cook,” was the reply, “Six percent of the take for now. Maybe more later. full run of the kitchen and your own bunk.”

“How many crew?”

“Right now, ten plus yourself so that makes eleven.”

“I'm not sure,” Alisha replied with a slight grin, “I haven't cooked for that few people in quite some time.”

“Huh?” said Mal.

“I accept,” Alisha replied.

“Welcome to Serenity.”


Alisha, Allan and Reagan helped Vera with the cooking that night, Alisha smiling as she worked. Doing something familiar like cooking was helping her heal. The wonderful people that surrounded her sister didn't hurt either.

Once supper was ready, Inara, Fred and River brought Jenny and Madison downstairs to eat. Shy at first, they opened up a bit more sitting next to Alisha. Madison seemed to bounce back the quickest of the two younger girls. Vera Grinned as she noticed the girl staring at her youngest son Mattie sitting across the large table from her.

Looking up, Mattie noticed the brunette staring at him, “Uh, hi,” he said.

“Hi,” the girl replied shyly.

“I'm Mattie.”

The girl began to giggle.

“What's so funny?”

“So am I”

“So am I what?” replied a confused Mattie.

“Maddy... My name is Madison, Maddy for short.”

The young man smiled, “Mattie is short for Matthew.”

“Nice to meet you Mattie,” the girl replied with a smile.

Smiling back, he replied, “Same here Maddy.”

Jayne tried not to laugh at his baby brother, River smacked his arm before he could make a rude comment.

“Jayne,” Vera said sternly.

“Yeah Ma'?”

“Have you and River set a date yet?”

“Uh, not yet Ma'. Hadn't had time to think on it yet.”

“You better not be thinkin o' running off and getting hitched without your kin about.

“Hadn't planned on it Ma'.”

“Good, keep it that way.”


After dinner, Zoë took Alisha to Serenity to giver her the grand tour of her new home. Feeling more confident, Madison and Jenny followed.

Allan was standing on the back porch with Mattie. Allan looked at the young man noting that his eyes followed Madison as she walked away. A slight grin on his face, Allan decided Mattie needed a little push.

“Why don't you go up to the ship and see Simon Mattie. He might have time to give you that exam he wanted to do. And if he's busy you can get the tour along with the girls.”

“Huh? Oh yeah... I'll do that. Thanks Allan, good idea.”

Allan heard a chuckle from the open kitchen door behind him.

“Tryin to hook my boy up with a girl Allan?” asked Vera Cobb.

“Nope, Just giving the boy a little push in the right direction.”

“Think it's too soon for the girls?”

“They've been through a lot but I think they will be fine. Giving them a chance to act like teenagers again by ogling a boy might be just what they need.”

“Good point.”


Zoë led the girls up the ramp into Serenity. The bay was mostly empty now that the co-op's truck had been driven away. It's cargo safe from Maxwell.

“This here's the cargo bay,” Zoë said to the assembled group, “Up there on the top walkways are the entrances to the two shuttles. Shuttle one is Inara's and number two we use for cargo work.”

The younger girls were held in thrall by Zoë's practiced tour speech. Alisha just looked around at her new home.

“Back here through this hatch are the passenger dorms, common area and the infirmary,” Zoë continued.

As the group entered the common area they found Kaylee and Simon in a nearly compromising position. Simon was seated on the sofa, Kaylee straddling his hips while they kissed. Kaylee's coverall's were zipped down to her waist and Simon's hands were inside them somewhere near the mechanics backside.

“And this is the common area,” Zoë said loudly as she entered, “And that is a rather blatant public display of affection by our doctor and mechanic.”

Kaylee jumped off Simon's lap with a squeak. The good doctor looked mortified that he and Kaylee had been caught necking.

“Uhhh, hiya Zoë,” squeaked Kaylee.

“As you were you two,” Zoë said with a grin, “Just givin a little tour.”

Simon rose to his feet, “Are these the ladies you found at Maxwell's?” Simon asked. He and Kaylee had been in the ship ever since the gunfight and hadn't met the girls as of yet.

“They are,” Zoë replied.

“Which one of you is Alisha?” Simon asked. Allan had given Simon a quick report about what he had found medically earlier in the evening.

I am Sir,” Alisha said stepping forward.

Simon smiled at the young woman, “When you feel up to it, I'd like to do a more through examination. I'd also like to run a few tests as well. Also you can call me Simon.”

Alisha nodded, She knew that the doctor probably wanted to run an early pregnancy test since she had been the one raped, “Okay Simon”

“I'm Kaylee,” chirped the mechanic in her usual happy voice, “Wow Zoë, Alisha looks like she could be your little sister.”

“Thats because she is my little sister Kaylee,” Zoë said with a grin.

Kaylee and Simon looked shocked for a moment, then a huge smile came across the mechanic's face.

“Thats so shiny Zoë!”

“I feel the same way.”

“What about you girls? Any family anywhere?”

The two younger girls faces fell. Jenny started to sniffle.

Kaylee, realizing what she had said, rushed forward and pulled the two girls into a hug.

“I'm so sorry. I didn't think fer a sec,”

The two teens began to cry, Kaylee steered them to the sofa, their tears soaking her shirt.

“Shhh, it's okay girls, it's okay, jus let it all out. Nobody gonna hurt ya here on Serenity,” Kaylee said as she comforted the two girls.

“Come on Sissy,” Zoë said to her sister, “We can show them the rest of the ship later. If anyone can cheer em' up it's Kaylee. That girl could cheer up a cloudy day.”

Simon excused himself and checked on his patient Josh in the infirmary while Zoë led her sister up the stairs to the aft passageway.

“Back there is the engine room,” Zoë said as she continued the tour, “And here's the galley and lounge...”

Alisha stepped into the room that was now her responsibility. Walking slowly around the room she noted the warm yellow walls and painted on flowers. Her fingers traced one of the patterns a moment before she walked behind the counter to look at the cooking area.

“It's like the galley on the Sally Mae,” Alisha remarked.

“It is,” Zoë agreed, remembering the ship they had grown up on.

“Will I be doing everything in here?”

“Mostly,” Zoë replied, “We do breakfast and dinner as a crew. Lunch is catch as catch can, unless we're not busy, then we try to sit down. I figure you'll be the primary cook. Kaylee, River and Allan can help when you need it. Also I figure we'll keep the rotation going for doing dishes and the like. We try to split up all the chores.”

“Just like the Sally Mae,” Alisha replied wistfully.

“Just like,” Zoë replied, “Come on, I'll show you where you'll be bunking.”

Zoë led her sister into the forward corridor. Stopping in front of Kaylee's old bunk she smiled.

“This was Kaylee's old bunk before she moved in with Simon in the dorms. I think it will work okay for you.”

Zoë kicked the hatch open and climbed down. Alisha following her down the ladder. Kaylee had moved most of her things out but a few of her touches could still be seen in the room.

“I'll have Kaylee move the rest of her stuff out later. But you can sleep here tonight if you want.”

“Thanks Zhang-zi.”

“Your welcome Mei-mei.”

Mattie, after witnessing the girls breaking down on Kaylee's shoulder, decided he would wait until morning to try talking to Madison. With a sigh, he made his way back to the house.

After the girls had cried themselves out, Kaylee led them to River's old room. Making up the bunk, Kaylee excused herself for a moment to retrieve an air mattress and more linen from storage. In short order she made the room comfortable for the two girls. Assuring them if there were any problems, She and Simon were across the hall while Gabriel and Reagan were just around the corner.


Alisha slept fitfully. Tossing and turning most of the night. Every time she fell asleep a nightmare would wake her. Finally at five am, she gave up trying to sleep. Dressing in the clothes River had purchased for her the previous day. Alisha quietly made her way up the ladder. Looking around, she made her way to the galley. Stepping through the door she jumped when she heard a voice.

“Trouble sleeping?” came River's quiet voice.

“Ahh! You startled me.”

“I'm sorry,” River replied, “I made some tea, would you like a cup?”

“Thank you.”

The two young women sat in silence at the table sipping their tea. After a while Alisha spoke up.

“I wanted to thank you for yesterday.”

“There is no need,” River replied with a soft smile, “Saving folk is what we do. That is, when we're not shooting folk”

Alisha gave River a confused look.

“This crew has no love for the Alliance. We do the work we can find. Some legal like yesterday, some not so much.”

“What's the not so much?”

River smiled at Alisha, “Not what you're thinking, Some smuggling, tariff dodging, robbery... No piracy or slaving.”

“Thats good I guess.”

“It's not as bad as I make out. Most of our work lately has been legitimate. The Captain is finally letting Inara use her contacts to get us work.”

“Inara's contacts?”

“Inara used to be a Companion.”

“Oh,” replied Alisha.

“Does that bother you?” River asked.

“Not me personally... I guess anyway. It's just my foster parents were very strict and prudish. They wouldn't approve of anything like that. They didn't even really let me date when I was a teenager.”

“I can sympathize. I didn't have much time to enjoy being a teenager myself.”

“What happened?”

“It's a long and sad story and I promise to tell you soon. But for now let us say that the school I was in didn't encourage much of a social life.”

“I didn't have a social life before I went to culinary school. Or after either. I was a bit overwhelmed so I buried myself in my studies for the most part.”

“I can understand that,” River replied, “Now, let's get busy with breakfast. The crew will be up soon and you will want to make a good impression for your first day on the job.”

“My first day?”

“Of course. Now you're here, you might as well start. It will help you in keeping the monsters at bay. Besides, we are taking you shopping later.”


“Shopping,” River replied.

“Where's the eggs?”


Allan awoke to the smell of bacon frying. Rolling over in bed he realized Zoë wasn't next to him. Opening his eyes Allan spied his fiancé getting dressed.

“Mornin Bao-bei,” He said sleepily.

“Mornin baby, sleep well?”

“I always do with you.”

“Just remember that when we're old and gray.”

“I'll be old and gray well ahead of you Zoë.”

Zoë's face grew dark. She had to look away for a moment. Allan saw her expression and sighed. He'd done it again. I must be taking lessons from Simon in how to put my foot in my mouth, he thought.

“Sorry, bad choice of words.”

“Did you... ever want kids... you know, if you met the right woman?” Zoë asked out of the blue.

Taken aback, Allan paused before he replied.

“I never thought I'd ever meet a woman I wanted to bear my children.”

Zoë looked at him sceptically.

“What I mean,” Allan continued, “Is that I never envisioned meeting a beautiful amazon warrior who makes me feel like a teenager.” Allan smiled as continued, “And that I never imagined I would ever ask said amazon to be my wife.”

A smile was starting to show on Zoë's face. Taking a deep breath, Allan continued on, “I would be happy to give you a baby Zoë.”

Zoë slowly stood up from the small desk and stepped to the bedside. Sitting next to Allan she looked in his eyes.

“I'm sensing a but in that statement,” She said quietly.

Allan nodded. “Sort of. I just want to get this thing with Blue Sun out of the way. Then we'll start our family.”

“You got six months.”

“Huh? Why six months?”

“Simon gave me my birth control shot the other day. It wears off in six months. After that I'm not getting another one,” Zoë said firmly.

“Deal,” Allan replied.

“In the meantime, We can always practice,” Zoë said seductively.

“I'm liking that idea,” Allan said as he pulled her to him.

“Breakfast is ready. Those of us not having sex will be eating momentarily,” came River's voice from the com.

Allan groaned, “I'm gonna shoot that girl.”

“I heard that,” River's voice said, “No bacon for you Allan.”

Zoë collapsed on top of Allan in a fit of laughter, a moment later he joined her.



Jung chi duh go-se dway - steaming crap pile Zhang-zi – Older Sister


Monday, August 4, 2008 5:29 AM


Allan really should know better by now. Oh well, his bacon.

I love the potential romance between Mattie and Maddy; it's so cute.

Monday, August 4, 2008 5:24 PM


Where do the two younger girls fit in, I wonder? It's nice to see River able t help someone hwo's experenced trauma.


Monday, August 4, 2008 9:45 PM


I think Alisha's going to fit in well. And the budding romance is fun, too. So Zoe's given Allan six months ... should be good!


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