First Kiss
Sunday, November 23, 2008

Maya. But future Maya. Very post-BDM. I know I should be writing PROSPERO'S LEGACY, but here is a little fun fluff to make up for the last ficlet. Enjoy!


She was a year and a half older than him, and right now he didn’t exactly know what to do. He patted her arm ineffectually.

“It’s okay, Bethie. They’ll come for us.”

“I know,” she sniffed, wiping the tears from her cheeks with the back of her hand.

He swallowed, hard. He knew it was totally the wrong thing to be thinking, but in the last few months she’d really blossomed, and since her seventeenth birthday she’d become a really pretty girl. He corrected himself. Young woman.

She leaned against him, and he felt his muscles tense.

“I’m cold, Ethan,” she said, trying to snuggle down like she had when she was a child.

“Oh … okay.” With infinite care he wrapped his arm around her shoulders.


For a long time they sat quietly, just staring at the tiny cell, at the dirty straw on the floor and the functional, if disgusting, toilet in the corner.

“You know, they’re going to think it’s our fault,” she eventually whispered.

“I know.”

“I mean, if I hadn’t wanted to go back to that shop, and you hadn’t insisted on coming with me, we neither of us would be in this position.”


“Uncle Mal is going to be so cross.”


“And Daddy’s going to be mad, Mom is going to shout, and Auntie Frey -”

“Hey, my Ma is gonna understand.”

She looked up at him. “You think?”

“I know.” And he did. His mother certainly would understand. She’d known how he felt about Bethie since before he did.

“You should’ve knocked me out and dragged me back screaming.”

“If’n I’d knocked you out, you wouldn’t be able to scream,” he pointed out.

“Oh, yeah.” She chuckled, and it warmed his heart.

She snuggled closer, and other things began to warm.

Cold space. Think of the black. And freezing showers. Uncle Simon’s face.

“Where do you think they’re taking us?” she asked, unaware of his thoughts. Luckily, they’d agreed not to read each other when they hit puberty, more than uncomfortable about the random thoughts and feelings going through the other’s mind.

“Don’t know.” He shrugged. “Slavers tend to use the temporary markets, and I ain’t got an idea where the closest is.” They’d been on Calliope, just having a few hours relaxation while their parents made a delivery, when they were taken off the street. “But they’re coming.”

“I know.” She sniffed again. “It’s just … embarrassing.”

He had to smile. “Yeah.”

“Still cold,” she said softly.

Wondering where this gentlemanly streak had come from, he took off his shirt and wrapped it around them both, and he felt her cold hands on his chest.

Snow. Glaciers. The airlock. The … oh, merciful Buddha.

She’d moved around him, until she was sitting between his thighs, her body pressed against his, and he had to close his eyes not to see her honey-coloured hair under his chin. She snaked her arms around him, pressing as close as she could.

Bathfuls of ice. Dad. Cao.

Her eyes had widened. For a girl brought up on a transport ship with a crew possessing some of the highest libidos in the ‘verse, and being a natural Reader to boot, she was surprisingly innocent about the effect she could have on men, even those as young as him.

“Sorry,” he mumbled.

She didn’t move. “Is that …”

“Yes. Sorry.”

“You know it’s only natural. A normal, hormonal response to mental, physical and psychological stimuli that -”

“Bethie, that ain’t helping.”

“Oh. Sorry.”

“And I think you’ve been spending way too much time with Auntie River.” He groaned as she shifted slightly.

“Sorry.” She went to move away, but suddenly found his arms around her.

“Don’t,” he said quickly before his brain could interfere with his mouth. “Just … don’t.” He pulled her close.

For a second she resisted, then melted against him. “Oh.”

“I won’t do anything,” he promised.

“And if I want you to?”

He stared at her, wondering if she had gone as feng luh as her aunt. “What?”

She smiled slowly. “Not now. And certainly not here. But …”

He swallowed again. “Are you saying you …” Now his throat was so dry he could hardly speak. “You have … feelings for me?”

“Ethan, we’ve been friends forever. Of course I do.”

“Oh.” He felt disappointed.

“But maybe in other ways too.”


In response she lifted her head enough so that their faces were on a level and gently placed her lips on his. He could feel the delicate pressure, and for just a moment their tongues met, then they were separate again.

“And it’s perfectly normal,” she went on in a reasonable tone of voice as she settled back against him. “Your father was fourteen, so perhaps it runs in the family.”

He could still taste her. “And I’ll be sixteen in a few weeks. But I haven’t …” He stopped, knowing a deep red tide had spread up his chest and coloured his cheeks.

“You’re still a virgin,” she supplied.

Coughing a little, he managed to say, “Yes.”

“So am I.” She sighed. “Not much opportunity to be anything else with the men of Serenity around.”

He looked down sharply at her. “So I’m just the only one available?”

Her tawny eyes fixed on his. “No, silly. I picked you. I don’t know why, but … I like you.”

“Oh.” His brain short-circuited.

“Perhaps we could go on a date. Somewhere off ship.”

Quickly he mentally counted through the small amount of cash at his disposal from the one job he‘d been allowed to go on. “Um, sure.”

“Somewhere cheap.”

“Are you reading me?”

“No. Of course not. But I understand.”

Dammit, she probably did. There was nothing happened on board their home that everyone didn’t know about.

“You know, Uncle Jayne offered to take you and Ben to one of his favourite houses. You know, the ones he used to visit before getting squicky with Auntie River,” she said idly, tracing her finger through the tiny number of hairs on his chest and up the almost invisible scar from his heart operation. “Only Uncle Mal offered to put him out the airlock.” She giggled, sounding like the girl she used to be and not the young woman she’d become.

“I wouldn’t want my first time to be with a whore,” he said firmly. “Or any time, for that matter.”

“Like father, like son.”

“I guess.”

“But I’m not ready yet.”

He ran his hand up her back. “I know. And I ain’t gonna push. Not now or ever.”

“Like father, like son,” she repeated, a smile on her face. Her eyes closed. “Auntie River’s angry.”

His eyebrows raised. “They’re coming?”

“Nearly here.”

“Good.” He settled back, feeling her weight on his chest. “Good.”


The slavers didn’t know what hit them when an angry and well-armed selection of family members boarded their vessel, wiping most of them out before they could even blink.

“Where are they?” Mal asked, holding up the captain by his collar.

The man coughed, blood running down his chin. “In the hold,” he managed to croak. “Cells.”

“Door code.”

“Six seven eight three.”

“Shiny.” He looked at his first mate. “Zoe, I’m gonna leave these sha gua chun zi in your capable hands.”

“Yes, sir.”

The man on the floor looked terrified.

River and Jayne were already waiting when the others arrived, and River quickly input the release code. All the doors opened, and frightened faces peered out.

“See to ‘em,” Mal ordered. “We’ll take ‘em back to Calliope, let the Feds sort out who’s who.”

“Sure, Mal,” the big man said.

“Where’s Bethie?” Simon asked, his gun in his hand.

“Here,” Freya responded, leaning in a doorway.

They crowded behind her.

“What on earth …”


“They’re young.”

“That’s no excuse.” Simon went to walk into the cell to wake them up, but Freya put her hand on his arm.

“You let Kaylee know they’re safe. We’ll bring them along.”

The doctor’s eyes narrowed, and he was about to argue, then realised this was one he wasn’t going to win. He backed away, heading for the com.

Mal leaned on the wall, staring into the cell. “There’s gonna be ructions about this, ain’t there?”

“I think there might,” Freya agreed.

“Think I can reintroduce my ‘no shipboard romances’ rule?”



“They’re just sleeping, Mal.”

“Yeah, and my son’s bare-chested.”

“He’s a gentleman.” She smiled and wound her arm through his. “Like his father.”

“I ain’t a gentleman.”

“Of course you are.” She raised her head and kissed him briefly. “Now, come on. We need to wake these two sleeping beauties and get them home.”

“Are you gonna have words with ‘em?”

“Oh, yes.”

“And about running off on Calliope?”


Mal grinned. “Good. Can I watch?”


Sunday, November 23, 2008 3:17 AM


Loved this and loved Ethan being a big chip off his father's block. Very sweet and I love the implied notion that they will wait for each other rather than getting their experience through other means. Ali D :~)
You can't take the sky from me

Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:25 AM


Sweet and fluffy and a nice change from watching hormones controlling brain function regardless of consequences. Nice of the family to have their own little army in case of trouble. And glad they were able to stop the slavers.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:56 AM


Sounds like Ethan is the best of Mal and Frey. Fluffy and so sweet. I just love Bethie and Ethan together.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 9:17 AM


"For a girl brought up on a transport ship with a crew possessing some of the highest libidos in ,the ‘verse,".I love this description, it brought a huge smile to my face. Poor Ethan and his raging hormones. I must say I like the mental processes he used to try and control them "Uncle Simon's face, Dad, the airlock" I am glad you took the time to let this piece develope. I also like the naturalness with which you place Simon at the rescue, gun in hand. I have always thought once he over came his Core bred reluctance to it he could in fact become rather good with one.

Thanks to all for your welcome back and your input on the new piece.

gentle journey,

Sunday, November 23, 2008 7:43 PM


AWWWWW!!! I thought this was too cute. LOL!!


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Now and Then - a Christmas story
“Then do you have a better suggestion? No, let me rephrase that. Do you have a more sensible suggestion that doesn’t involve us getting lost and freezing to death?”

[Maya. Post-BDM. A little standalone festive tale that kind of fits into where I am in the Maya timeline, but works outside too. Enjoy!]

Monied Individual - Epilogue
"I honestly don’t know if my pilot wants to go around with flowers and curlicues carved into his leg.”
[Maya. Post-BDM. The end of the story, and the beginning of the last ...]

Monied Individual - Part XX
Mal took a deep breath, allowing it out slowly through his nostrils, and now his next words were the honest truth. “Ain’t surprised. No matter how good you are, and I’m not complaining, I’ve seen enough battle wounds, had to help out at the odd amputation on occasion. And I don’t have to be a doc myself to tell his leg ain’t quite the colour it should be, even taking into account his usual pasty complexion. What you did … didn’t work, did it?”
[Maya. Post-BDM. Simon has no choice, and Luke comes around.]

Monied Individual - Part XIX
“His name’s Jayne?”

“What’s wrong with that?” the ex-mercenary demanded from the doorway.

“Nothing, nothing! I just … I don’t think I’ve ever met a man … anyone else by that name.”

“Yeah, he’s a mystery to all of us,” Mal said. “Even his wife.”

[Maya. Post-BDM. Hank's not out of the woods yet, and Mal has a conversation. Enjoy!]

Monied Individual - Part XVIII
Jayne had told him a story once, about being on the hunt for someone who owed him something or other. He’d waited for his target for three hours in four inches of slush as the temperature dropped, and had grinned when he’d admitted to Hank that he’d had to break his feet free from the ice when he’d finished.
[Maya. Post-BDM. The Fosters show their true colours, Jayne attempts a rescue, and the others may be too late.]

Snow at Christmas
She’d seen his memories of his Ma, the Christmases when he was a boy on Shadow, even a faint echo of one before his Pa died, all still there, not diminished by his burning, glowing celebrations of now with Freya.

[Maya. Post-BDM. A seasonal one-off - enjoy!]

Monied Individual - Part XVII
Jayne hadn’t waited, but planted a foot by the lock. The door was old, the wood solid, but little could stand against a determined Cobb boot with his full weight behind it. It burst open.

[Maya. Post-BDM. The search for Hank continues. Read, enjoy, review!]

Monied Individual - Part XVI
He slammed the door behind him, making the plates rattle on the sideboard. “It’s okay, girl, I ain't gonna hurt you.” The cook, as tradition dictated, plump and rosy cheeked with her arms covered to the elbows in flour, but with a gypsy voluptuousness, picked up a rolling pin.

[Maya. Post-BDM. Kaylee finds the problem with Serenity, and Jayne starts his quest. Read, enjoy, review!]

Monied Individual - Part XV
“Did we …” “We did.” “Why?” As she raised an eyebrow at him he went on quickly, “I mean, we got a comfy bunk, not that far away. Is there any particular reason we’re in here instead?” “You don’t remember?” He concentrated for a moment, and the activities of a few hours previously burst onto him like a sunbeam. “Oh, right,” he acknowledged happily.

[Maya. Post-BDM. A little with each Serenity couple, but something goes bang. Read, enjoy, review!]

“Did we …” “We did.” “Why?” As she raised an eyebrow at him he went on quickly, “I mean, we got a comfy bunk, not that far away. Is there any particular reason we’re in here instead?” “You don’t remember?” He concentrated for a moment, and the activities of a few hours previously burst onto him like a sunbeam. “Oh, right,” he acknowledged happily.

[Maya. Post-BDM. A little with each Serenity couple, but something goes bang. Read, enjoy, review!]