BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL

AMDOBELL

COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS: 14. "Reputations"
Monday, February 21, 2005

"Sarah shows the Captain exactly what she wants while Zoe frets. Meanwhile Alex Trent is about to reap what he has sown."


CATEGORY: FICTION    TIMES READ: 2294    RATING: 10    SERIES: FIREFLY

TITLE: "REPUTATIONS" AUTHOR: Alison M. DOBELL FANDOM: "FIREFLY" PAIRING: Mal/Sarah. RATING: NC-17 STATUS: SEQUEL to "SETTING THE TRAP" ARCHIVE: Yes. Just let me know where. FEEDBACK: Welcomed. EMAIL: AlisonMDobell@aol.com WEBSITE: http://carlajane.50megs.com/Ali00.html

SUMMARY: "Sarah shows the Captain exactly what she wants while Zoe frets. Meanwhile Alex Trent is about to reap what he has sown." The usual disclaimers apply. The characters and 'Firefly' are the property and gift of Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. No infringement of copyright is intended.

"REPUTATIONS"

A "Firefly" story

Written by Alison M. DOBELL

* * * * *

It was the strangest thing. Mal had no recollection of how the good gorram they had got into the bedroom, oblivious to the kindly machinations of Kaylee's parents. Her mother practically hovering over Mal and Sarah until they had been half ushered and half herded into the house and away from prying eyes. A protectiveness evident as if they were two of her own brood. Mal's voice was thick and husky with desire as he tried to control his libedo and still the movement of skilled hands. To not let the lust take over from common sense. "This ain't right."

Her warm breath fanned his cheek. "You know what Mal? You're right. You have way too many clothes on."

Then he was hitting the bed, most of his clothes being ripped off him in a frenzy of lips, tongue, hands and teeth. He was panting, eyes slightly glazed. Sarah doing things to him that he had vowed he would never allow himself to feel again. Gorrammit, he wanted her so badly. How could that be right? Her lust consumed him until he thought the passion would sear him to the bone. "Girl, what you doin' to me?"

Her laughter was light and husky and sexy as *diyu*. "If you don't know Mal best I show you."

He couldn't argue with that. Could hardly form words when her busy mouth got to work on him in earnest. He groaned soft and deep in the back of his throat, not a stitch on either one of them now. Sweat glistening on their skin from their exertions, her body gliding over his like warm silk, her fingers rewriting everything he thought he knew about the fairer sex. *Wode ma* she was reading his body like a gorram expert, anticipating his needs, fanning his desire then tipping him right over the edge of sense as she egged him closer and closer to orgasm. Only she didn't let him come right away, biting and sucking at his chest, her tongue washing a nipple, her hands dancing across the rosy head to excite the precum, she was taking her own sweet time bringing him higher and higher then dangling him on the edge of unbearable ecstasy.

"Gorrammit woman..." He half sighed and groaned.

Her lusty chuckle rose from his chest to his ear, her mouth now tracing the seal where his ear had been cut off then reattached. So rutting sensitive he couldn't stop gasping as she licked along the join, his hips beginning to jerk beneath her. Her tongue slid hot and wet into his ear canal then she lifted her hips and mounted him, ramming him deep inside her, her teeth on his ear, her tongue sliding in and out as a long groan leaked from of his stunned lips, encouraging him to thrust up in time to the rythym she set with her hips and tongue. "Come on, Mal," Her breath hissed hot with passion in his ear then she bit down on his earlobe hard enough to draw blood.

He was lifting her up off the bed now, her hands gripping his back, the nails digging into his skin and just making him hotter for her. His breath a staggered cacophony that raced to a new heartbeat, her hips matching his frantic rythym and begging for more. Harder, deeper, more power, more everything. The sweat shone on his face but could not dim the bright aura she exuded like some siren drawing him on to the rocks. Again and again he dashed against her, the waves of her orgasm breaking over and around him as he finally came, hips snapping, the hot rush as his spine ignited with fire and shot deep inside her. She rolled onto her back taking him with her, able now to wrap her thighs around his waist trapping him inside her. As if she wanted to merge him into her body, absorb all that he was into her own self. Possessing him wholly.

As the passion seeped out of their sated bodies he rested for a moment, his forearms taking the bulk of his shattered weight. Not wanting to crush her but Sarah wanted the crush. Wanted to feel his weight pinning her down, feel everything. All he had to offer, even the parts of himself kept hidden. Did not want to miss one look, one touch, one heated point of contact. Committing to memory the taste of him on her lips, the feel of him on her skin and inside the liquid core of her body. She liked him pulsing inside her, the vibrant vitality of him keeping a flame burning bright and warming more than the parts of them that touched. It felt right, made her complete in a way she had never felt with such passion before. While Mal caught his breath she kissed his eyes, cheek, mouth, lazily lapping at the sweat dripping off his face and down the long column of his beautiful neck. She wondered idly if anyone had ever worshipped him the way she was doing right now. Would ever love him as much as she did now. A smile of pure indulgence sailed the warm curve of her lips then she nudged his arms aside, forcing him to bear down with his full weight, exulting in the feel of the contact of their heated skin.

"Sarah, I'm too heavy..."

Possessive arms held him in thrall. Her musical voice whispered in his ear making him shudder as she described all the things she wanted to do to him. Not once but over and over and over again. Despite the weariness tugging at his body a tired chuckle rumbled through him at her inventiveness. She loved it, loved him but didn't want to scare him away by saying so. Let him think this was just lust, no bonds, no expectations. Many a man would love a woman to the day he died but would run a mile if the word was spoken aloud, acknowledged with all the trappings that would follow like some shotgun wedding. No man liked to feel trapped by a woman's wiles and Sarah was smart enough to know that. She would let him set the pace but be ready to hang on for the ride. Let go and you could lose everything you've bet your shirt on. So she held on tight, letting him roll on to his back to take the weight off her, her hands stroking his arms and sides, her words soft and soothing. For all his rough edges he was quite the gentleman. Mal was too tired to argue, sleep stealing over him and leaving the sweetest smile upon his lips.

Sarah Moore watched him drift off. Her look tender. Gently kissed his lips, his cheek, the closed lids of his weary eyes. Admired the long dark lashes cradling his cheek and the smooth column of his neck as she indulged the desire to taste him, her tongue trailing across warm sweat soaked skin that she would memorise for eternity. She wanted to fill her senses with him, locking the images and memories deep in her heart. Her hands mapped hard muscle, her mouth following the inventive trail of her lightly dancing fingertips. Ghosting over his cooling skin, warming him with her mouth and tongue as she washed him gently, not wanting to wake him but absorbing every sigh and savouring the taste of him on her lips. She loved him as he slept, a quiet yet passioniate addiction settling in both heart and soul. Amost crying with the joy of it, of him. How long this would last she did not know. Whether it would happen again she could not tell. But if there was a God in Heaven she was determined to make him hers.

* * * * *

"How long do you suppose they'll be in there?"

Zoe glared at Wash. It was not an image she wanted inside her head yet she had to admit that Monty was right. How could she deny the Captain what she so avidly cherished with Wash? Why should she have the comfort and pleasure of sex and deny the same to Mal? Part of her did not want to pursue that line of thought. It danced too close to feelings and a past she could never quite give up no matter what she confessed to in the cold light of day. Her job was to protect him not bed him but somehow that pragmatism sounded hollow.

Wash glanced at her then slid an arm around her waist. He resisted the urge to openly speculate knowing the last thing his dear deadly wife wanted to hear was him discussing the Captain's sex life. *Diyu* her reaction to Sarah had initially amused him but now was beginning to worry him. While he couldn't deny that the Captain needed this like a man dying of thirst needed an oasis he was wise enough to let the subject drop. Instead he kissed her cheek, peppered little baby kisses down the side of her neck where he knew she was ticklish and pleaded with her to find somewhere where they could get rid of their own tensions. She was tempted but resisted. Knew the Captain intended to go to Shadow. The last thing she needed was to be lost in the heat of passion while Mal slipped away and tempted fate. They had been lucky so far but how long could their luck hold? The Alliance were still twitchy enough about the Rim planets, those that had been loyal to the Independents, to exact a harsh uncompromising price from any exile who dared to return. No. Her job was to protect him even when it was the last gorram thing he wanted her to do.

* * * * *

Alex Trent knew he was a coward. Didn't have it in him to be any Big Damn Hero and wouldn't have wanted that anyway. He was a survivor. Right now though he realised that entering into a contract with Adelei Niska had been a mistake he would not survive. All the pleading and begging in the 'verse had amounted to naught. Niska had brought him to Shadow. Bound in chains and naked as the day he had been born. The scratches on his forearms were fading but the memory of how he had got them came back to haunt him like all his sins. It was a sobering thought.

The *liumang* missed Crow. He had been a good henchman. As committed and cruel as his master and totally obedient to Niska's will. He had other men to serve him but they did so through fear. Crow had never feared him, he had respected him. And it was that respect he craved almost as much as his reputation. Malcolm Reynolds had cost him dear and the man would pay. To the very last breath in his body and with the last drop of blood.

It had stopped snowing but there were still some deep drifts. Niska and his men wore special artic clothing. Alex was shivering before he even left the ship. There was no sign of any other craft in the sky or on the ground. Niska had many allies and enough contacts to ensure the Alliance never approached Shadow when he was in orbit. It was a little thing but made things smooth. The howling wind clawed icy fingers at the naked man, Alex crying out for something to wear. He was ignored and dragged through the snow, his teeth chattering, his body shaking. Feet already numb with the cold after only a few yards. It seemed to take forever to reach the *jianyu* but as it came into view Alex whimpered and began to struggle. Niska smiled at him and he stopped. He knew he was going to die but he would be damned if he would make it any more entertaining for the sick *tamade hundan* than could be avoided.

Amused Niska's smile widened. Nothing chilled Alex Trent's heart more than the look in his eyes. Terrified he stared back. He did not even struggle when he was placed on the snow in the *jianyu*, Niska's men patiently beginning to brick the opening back up again. He watched Niska watching him. Tried not to tremble but it was no use. The involuntary act was his body's pathetic attempt to keep him warm. He wondered idly whether he would get frostbite before he froze to death. Then Niska raised a hand and the brickwork stopped at chest height. He leaned in through the opening, light reflecting off his metal rim glasses. "You promised me Malcolm Reynolds." He said softly. Niska grinned. "He will come and he will find you, yes?"

He got no response. Alex just stared at him, no longer caring if he offended the man or not. What did it matter? He was dead anyway.

"And when he does," Said Niska smoothly, his tone conversational and mild as if they were doing no more than discussing the weather. "He will learn what is reputation. People need to see what happens to people who cross Adelei Niska."

He paused and waited but when Alex still said nothing Niska stepped back and gave a small nod. Alex Trent did not move as the chains were taken off his wrists and ankles. Hardly stirred as they propped him back up into a sitting position. There was no room for a man to stretch out. Not even the smallest of comforts was afforded him. Then he closed his eyes, his ears hearing the soft clink and muffled knocking sound of bricks being put in place. The mortar fixing them together even as the cold iced them into a solid wall. The one good thing about it was that the *jianyu* blocked out the icy wind. Alex sighed and let a single tear slide down his cheek, not noticing that it froze before it reached his chin.

* * * * *

Zoe Warren was so uptight her gorram skin was crawling. Fear twisting her gut up into knots so tight she wanted to vomit only she didn't dare. She knew Wash would never understand. *Diyu* there were times when even she didn't understand it. Finally she managed to get through to Wash that she didn't feel like making out, had things on her mind that needed tending to. The assertion did nothing to satisfy his anxiety but that couldn't be helped. She loved her husband more than any living soul in the 'verse except Mal. But what she had with the Captain wasn't a sexual thing. More like a connection that reached right down to their DNA. Explain it to Wash? That could only ever be a distant dream. First she would have to find the words to explain it to her own self.

"*Bao bei*, talk to me."

She wanted to push him away, tell him to give her space, but knew her sweet but jealous *zhangfu* would not understand. Anything she chose to say would only hurt him more. His fragile ego lacked the largesse he would need to absorb the truth. So she set her face and said nothing. His words fading into a meaningless babble that was intended to reassure but begged also for reassurance. They were outside, the cool air turning colder. Not that it reflected their current situation but if she had been a superstitious person she might have considered it an omen. As it was Zoe squinted up at the sky, noting that the brightness of the sun had been overwhelmed by light grey clouds, the air thickening with the smell of snow.

"Weather's turned."

Zoe turned her head to find Shepherd Book looking not at the sky but directly at her. Somehow she knew he meant more than the weather. Zoe's eyes narrowed but before she could say anything Frank Reynolds roused himself and walked towards her. Her irritation was replaced by concern and suspicion. What the good gorram was on his mind now?

"Zoe, we need to talk."

"So talk."

Frank looked uncomfortable. Almost everyone was outside the front of the house. "In private."

Something settled in her features that bordered on hostility. Wash looked puzzled. Why would Zoe be mad at Frank Reynolds? Simon and Kaylee were some yards away sitting under a tree talking quietly until cousin Charlie suggested they might want to make their way back to the house. Kaylee looked up in surprise. "We ain't goin' yet, Charlie, what's the rush?"

"Gonna snow."

That was when they noticed a palpable tension in the air. River was sitting cross legged on a log, eyes closed, hair beginning to fan out behind her as the wind started to get up. Simon rose and offered a hand to Kaylee. Perhaps Charlie was right. Kaylee was within a foot of River when the girl spoke, eyes still shut but more attuned to the 'verse around her than the rest of them put together. Even though River was her friend she sometimes creepyfied Kaylee. "He's looking for the chink in her armour."

Kaylee frowned, looked at Simon but he just shrugged. "I barely understand River on her good days."

River's eyes sprang open, steady and level on her brother's face. "This is good day."

"Who, River?" Asked Kaylee. "Who are ya talkin' about?"

She glanced at Kaylee then looked at Frank Reynolds as he disappeared into the barn. "She trusted him, still does, but she doesn't know what he did. Thinks if he can reach her he can win him back."

"Who, *mei mei?"

"Mal."

Her voice sounded so sad. Simon went to her but she sprang to her feet and danced just out of reach, her dress billowing around her, hair flying, eyes sparkling as her mood shifted. The last seconds of her life seemingly forgotten. "I want to dance!"

Simon reached out to her. "River? It's going to rain." She smiled sweetly. Kaylee noticed Zoe and Wash follow Frank into the barn. She wished she knew what was causing the sudden tension. Jayne scowled suspiciously and began to follow but the Shepherd shook his head deflecting the mercenary's intent. The big man nodded then went in the house. After a moment's hesitation Book followed him. Simon was sure he felt a spot of rain.

"It's only water."

"I know River but Charlie says it's going to snow. We should go indoors."

River shook her head. "Won't make any difference."

Kaylee was next to her now, River slowed the steps of her dance and tilted her pale face up towards the sky.

"Bigger storm brewing on the inside." A little shudder went through Kaylee. Simon moved closer and put an arm around her, thinking she was cold. "Come on," He said quietly but firmly. "Time to go inside."

* * * * *

Mr and Mrs Frye were sitting in the kitchen listening intently to everything Monty said. The range was banked up and filling the sprawling room with welcome heat. The large pine table scrubbed clean and bare but for a large bowl of fruit and home made busicuits. No one else was in the room for which all three were thankful. Mr Frye pursed his lips a moment, concern etched deep into his face. "*Tian Yesu*, that's quite a story." "That it is."

Kaylee's father looked troubled. "Goin' to Shadow sounds like a mistake."

"Can't you talk Mal out of it?" Urged Mrs Frye. Monty shook his head. "No, ma'am. The only one who can talk Mal out of anythin' when his mind is made up is Mal."

Mr Frye gave him a long intent look. "But that ain't the reason ya told us, is it?"

"No sir." Monty paused. "I'll be goin' with him. Watch his back. Would be mighty obliged if ya let the others stay on with ya 'til we get back."

For a moment no one spoke. An unsettling thought occurred to Mrs Frye. "Will it be dangerous?"

He could have lied to them but they didn't deserve that. "*Qu*. Alliance catch him this time he won't be comin' back."

A look of alarm spread across their faces. Mr Frye looked horrified. "They'd kill him? For goin' home?"

"If he's lucky."

They wanted to ask Monty what in the nine hells he meant by that but something in his grim expression put them off. Monty did not tell them why Mal and Zoe had been exiled from their homeworld at the end of war. They had been told it was Alliance policy, a way to prevent the defeated Browncoats fomenting rebellion after the hostilities. Even his friends didn't know the full of it and if he had his way they never would. The gorram war had left enough open wounds. Then Jayne, Book and the others came into the room and that ended any further conversation. With a heavy heart Mrs Frye got up and drew the kettle from the range to make some tea, understanding now why Monty was so determined to let the Captain have some private time with Sarah. It might be the last bit of pleasure he had.

* * * * *

Zoe's hands itched. Even though she had practically grown up in the Reynolds' household she was sorely tempted to put a bullet in Frank's head. Such anger as she had not embraced in a good long while now roared through her veins like a fire. "How could you?"

He hung his head and sighed then slowly looked up. The very picture of misery. "Wasn't planned nor intended Zoe."

Something tugged at Wash's backbrain. "Why'd you tell him?"

"*Shenme*?"

Wash shrugged. "You could have said nothing, just like you didn't have to tell us."

For a moment no one spoke then enlightenment crawled cold and dark across Zoe's face. "You're lookin' for absolution."

He just stared at her neither agreeing nor denying the accusation. It just made her even angrier though now the red hot fury had turned to a bitter permafrost that was reflected in her voice.

"You couldn't live with what you'd done," She said quietly. "So you had to tell him, put the burden on the one person you should have protected."

"It wasn't like that." Frank responded, trying not to flinch at the disgust in her voice.

"Yes, it was." Zoe leaned forward, eyes locked on his. "It was *exactly* like that an' if I could be sure it wouldn't hurt him more I'd shoot you dead here an' now."

His voice broke. "Zoe, *bao bei*..."

"Don't you *bao bei* me Frank Reynolds!" He gulped, drowning on air. "I thought you'd understand..."

Her eyes were blazing infernos. "What? That you'd been livin' a gorram lie?"

"*Bu qu*."

Zoe hissed in a sharp cold breath and stared at him for a full minute before speaking. "Get out of my ruttin' sight, I can't bear to look at you."

Wash knew Zoe was upset. Angry. And listening to Frank's confession he was with her one hundred percent but seeing the man literally fall to pieces under the weight of her disapproval was a painful thing to witness. His gentle heart faltered, wanting to find a way to make things right. Preferrably without any of the dying. "Zoe, perhaps we can talk this over..."

"No!" The sharp unequivocal denial was like a slap in the face. Wash froze and just stared at her but Zoe was not looking at him, she was looking at Frank Reynolds. A man she didn't even recognise any more.

* * * * *

It was cold. So rutting cold. The shivering had stopped and impossibly he had stopped worrying about his imminent death. In fact was looking forward to it for with death would come oblivion. No more pain, no more terror and no more Niska. He would have smiled at the irony but his face was pretty near frozen. His blood so sluggish in his veins he felt sleepy. The burning cold now seeming to warm him, coaxing him into closing his brittle eyelids before the dropping temperature snapped them.

His one regret was that he would not get to see the look on Malcolm Reynolds' face before he died.

* * * * *

He stared at her. Disbelief in every line of his body. Her face was flushed but there was a sincerity about the claim that gave him pause. The Commandant leaned forward on his desk, his crisp uniform having just enough give to allow the movement. "Why should I believe this ludicrous claim?"

A look glittered in her eyes that could have been one of triumph. "Because I have proof!"

Before he could challenge her the woman opened the old worn leather document case she had been clutching like a lifeline and for a moment the Commandant could see nothing in her hand. He frowned in annoyance. Was she toying with him? Then Becky stood up, ignoring the way the two guards either side of the door tensed, and stretched forth her right hand. The hand was curled into a tight fist. Slowly she turned the fist over and opened it. The Commandant peered at the object sitting in the middle of her palm. All the air sucking out of his lungs in shock.

His eyes slowly, reluctantly, left her hand and rose to meet hers. He had thought the movement crushed. Consigned to whispered tales to frighten children. "Where did you get that?"

"It was my husband's."

He stared. She whet her lips. Had gone too far to back down now.

"The Order of the Phoenix was supposed to be an underground Independent movement. A fifth column growing in the heart of the Alliance with key personnel loyal to the Independent cause working in positions of power in all the main core worlds. The planets on the Rim had their Field Commanders, Independent officers who never gave up. Men and women of uncommon valour who still believed in the cause, who still deemed freedom worth dying for."

"It was an illusion." Whispered the Commandant, his eyes returning to the ring. He made no attempt to touch something which still held such an aura of death. "Yet this is not a Field Commander's ring." He averred quietly. Not willing to voice how deeply the knowledge disturbed him.

The ring was in the shape of a silver phoenix, wings swept back to curl around the finger upon which it would rest. The centre of the bird was inset with a jade stone. This stone was not green but red. Green was for protection. Compassion. The colour of a Field Commander. Red was the colour of Command and Control. Becky Trent knew she had set some very powerful wheels in motion but she did not care. She had suffered enough and if she could not get her revenge she would settle for getting even. No matter the cost.

* * * * *

CHINESE GLOSSARY: (Mandarin - Pinyin)

*diyu* = hell *wode ma* = mother of God *liumang* = bastard/asshole/criminal/gangster *jianyu* = prison *tamade hundan* = fucking bastard *bao bei* = precious/treasure *zhangfu* = husband *mei mei* = little sister *tian Yesu* = sweet Jesus *qu* = yes (lit. go) *shenme* = what *bu qu* = no (lit. no go)

COMMENTS

Monday, February 21, 2005 3:37 AM

KAYSKY


Oh wow...once again I'm blown away. I really love your Zoe. She is definitely right on. I can't wait to read more!

Monday, February 21, 2005 5:05 AM

KISPEXI2


No need to encourage you to write faster, I see ;-) Another rip-roaring chapter, plot thickening nicely. Shivered a bit at " The sweat shone on his face but could not dim the bright aura she exuded like some siren drawing him on to the rocks. Again and again he dashed against her" - and not in a good way ... well, that at well *g*.

Am now nicely confused and waiting for the neat way all will eventually be revealed.

Monday, February 21, 2005 7:00 AM

SOULOFSERENITY


Ali, you just keep it coming full steam ahead! Yet another great installment. Things just keep growing in complication, but I know that when all is said and done, you'll have woven yet another beautiful tale.

More!

- Soul

Monday, February 21, 2005 7:01 AM

SOULOFSERENITY


Ali, you just keep it coming full steam ahead! Yet another great installment. Things just keep growing in complication, but I know that when all is said and done, you'll have woven yet another beautiful tale.

More!

- Soul

Tuesday, November 1, 2011 4:17 PM

SHINYZOEKAYLEE


Shiny!!!! Very good job on Zoe!!


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