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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
Inara and - who? Next in series.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1224 RATING: 10 SERIES: FIREFLY
Inara’s appointments with Dr Edo were always arranged in the same way: she and David Yo would think of a place to meet where their togetherness would be noticed but from which she would be able to slip away for several hours. Dr Ronson would meet her at this place and then accompany her by ambulance to the hospital. Once her appointment was over they would return to the meeting place by the same method, Inara having already shared with him the plan for the one to come.
And it was helping, the treatment – it was definitely helping. She made every movement, small or large, with a wondrous sense of freedom from the discomfort – sometimes pain – that had plagued her for more than two years. Her confidence increased as her health improved and she saw how much her reduced physical state had influenced her in her decision to leave Sihnon. She had stumbled away: from her contract with Michel Chamillart to her search for a place to collect herself and so on to Serenity.
She wondered now if her feelings for Mal had led her to neglect her own well-being in favor of the chance of being with him. If things had not gone as they had – if he had not let her down so utterly – she might still be out there, sick, in the Black, with him.
And if she had not met Dr Ronson – would she, having decided to put her health first, have also decided to return to the Core? It felt somehow, even though the decision had been hers, that both men had acted as a catalyst for bringing her back to Sihnon.
Wanting to understand the part that he had played in a development of such significance for her, Inara asked Dr Ronson how he had come to be on Pity. And the answer to that question was another sad love story: a sweetheart, Sherene, beautiful and of brilliant promise, a scholarship to Londinium, an intention to marry in spite of the distance. With the naivety of a Sihnonese, the sweetheart thought she could negotiate the landscape of student politics at a Londinium university. An Opprobrium followed, and then, not long afterwards, her disappearance. He hadn’t seen her since then. The people on Highgate had been her friends. And, in the aftermath, when all he wanted was to ‘do something’, they had persuaded him to stay on Sihnon, where people didn’t get outlawed for their political activities, where he would be free to come and go between the Core and wherever they found to settle.
When she asked him his first name he had joked – before saying ‘Samuel’ – that it was Hermes, the messenger.
She asked Dr Edo about him, when she didn’t see him for three consecutive appointments.
“Yes,” said Dr Edo, applying a warm, oily cream to Inara’s back, “he’s spoken to me, to make sure the transport has been making the pick-up.”
“Everything has gone well in that respect,” Inara said. “But my question was more of an enquiry after him, after his health. Is he well?”
“I believe so. Please put your head back down.”
There was a pause while Dr Edo began to massage Inara’s back.
“Has – has something happened, to stop him from coming?” she asked then. “I hope you don’t mind me asking. We don’t contact each other directly.”
“I don’t know him that well myself,” Dr Edo replied. “Only in the work we do. But I believe that all is well with him.”
Another pause; blissful up and down strokes.
“He told me that he wanted to be quite clear in his actions, that he had passed your care into my hands. That I was your doctor. Not him.”
Inara felt a jolt of hurt. She wished that she could see Dr Edo’s face. She was sure that she would be able to glean more from that than her voice, whose tone Inara could tell was studiedly neutral.
“I didn’t ask him why,” Dr Edo said – and now it sounded as though she was smiling. “Though I have an idea.”
Inara kept her breathing steady as she examined her feelings and considered how to reply.
“I would be very grateful,” she said finally, “if you could let him know, next time you speak to him, that I – value his help – his – presence – I would be very glad if he could continue accompanying me here.” She stopped, breathed again, switched her thoughts on to another track.
Several days later Inara drew up at the Ehro stables in a discreet Madrassa transport. After David Yo’s initial attention-grabbing visit to the House, they felt it no longer necessary to labor the point that they were (apparently) together.
The Stables, though rural-sounding, were anything but. They offered fine dining, accommodation and spa facilities, as well as the equestrian activities that their name suggested. Inara tapped at the door of one of the small but luxuriously-appointed lodges nestling in the lee of a birch wood and strained to hear the approach of Dr Ronson’s step.
The door opened and there he was, hurrying her in before they had a chance to properly acknowledge each other. Only when the door was closed and he turned around to return her greeting did she see that he was pleased to see her and, like her, trying not to show it.
Inara removed her outer robe with a sigh of happy relief. A long row of tiny silver buttons started at the floor-length hem and ended under the chin, making it difficult to look anywhere but straight ahead.
“I can’t seem to get comfortable again with this level of dressing up,” she said, folding the robe and sitting on the edge of the lodge’s low bed. She noticed that he stepped away from her, towards the window on the other side of the room.
“I wasn’t sure if you were going to make it,” she said. “I hope – I hope you don’t mind me asking you to come.”
“No, no,” he said quickly. “No – I” – a long pause – “after our conversation, about Sherene, I – it made me – it brought something that had been troubling me to the forefront, that as your doctor I shouldn’t be making those kinds of – confidences.”
Encouraged, Dr Ronson continued: “That’s why – I asked Dr Edo to – explain to you that – she did, didn’t she?”
“Good. But, if it’s helpful, I’m happy to be here.”
“As my friend.”
Dr Ronson looked at her, searching for her meaning. “Yes,” he nodded.
“Then please, sit beside me.”
Without hesitation, Dr Ronson came to sit next to her on the bed.
“In a way,” she said, quickly abandoning a smile that felt wrong, “you’re my only friend on Sihnon. You know where I’ve been. You’ve been there too. Pity. The Rim. You know what it’s like. And that everything here, it’s not as it seems.”
Dr Ronson’s expression matched the sincerity of her words. “But David Yo – you’re – very close to him.”
Now Inara did smile. “Yes. He’s helping me a great deal. I’m very fond of him, and very grateful.”
“I’m sorry, I – guess I – believe what I read about you and him. I mean, it’s difficult not to. Read about it.”
“You’re not the only one who thinks we’re a couple.”
Dr Ronson let his hands drop on to his knees. “Well. I hope it didn’t trouble you too much, getting to the hospital on your own.”
“I prefer to go with you,” Inara replied, with enough of a smile to lighten the possible weight of her words.
“Well. Okay! But not as your doctor.”
“As your friend,” he agreed.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010 1:09 PM
Tuesday, April 20, 2010 6:13 PM
Tuesday, April 20, 2010 9:53 PM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 1:18 AM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 7:13 AM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 9:21 AM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 9:36 AM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 10:18 AM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 11:29 AM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 2:17 PM
Friday, April 23, 2010 11:51 AM
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