STOLEN MOMENTS: 6. "Repercussions"
Monday, April 4, 2005

"Morning comes and the crew of Serenity get ready to undertake the next job. The Captain however is not feeling so good and Inara is not talking."



SUMMARY: "Morning comes and the crew of Serenity get ready to undertake their next job. The Captain however is not feeling so good and Inara is not talking." 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.


A "Firefly" story

Written by Alison M. DOBELL

* * * * *

The morning was rough. He knew it would be but even with the sorrow of regret nipping at his heels the greater part of him could not be sorry. The truth was the elephant in the room that neither of them would acknowledge. He loved her pure and simple and if he wasn't careful that would be the ruin of them both. So when she had woken him at 3 am and asked him to return to his own bunk it had not been hard for her to elicit the promise of his silence. He knew without asking that it would never happen again.

Weary in more than mind and body he made his slow way to his bunk. Took for gorram ever to get down the rutting ladder. No energy to pull the hatch shut behind him. He was tired and sore, his wound beginning to bleed through his heavy red shirt. Good notion wearing the rust one, made it less obvious that the wound had reopened. He knew Simon would berate him but right now the only thing he cared about was oblivion. Pity he couldn't go to sleep and not wake, that would be the kind of mercy he could appreciate. But he never did get just what he wanted when he needed it most. All the proof if any were needed that the Devil was alive and well but God was not. He would have to remember to enlighten the Shepherd when he had the energy to argue the debate.

The stir as the crew began to wake did not disturb the Captain. Wash got up with a mighty yawn and a huge benevolent smile on his face. Zoe practically glowed at him, her skin glistening from their recent exertions. He flowed back into her arms for another kiss and began to get amorous again. With a laugh Zoe batted his arm gently. "Not now, husband. We've got crime to be done."

He looked up and smiled at her. "What is the job again?"

She reached up to run a hand lightly down his face, loving how he turned his head towards her touch, his eyes closing in bliss. It never ceased to amaze her how much Wash loved her and how much he let it show. Yet it did not make him weak and his love for her made her so proud and happy. Fulfilling all the dark places in her soul that she thought would never be healed. "Horses. Lord Warwick has a herd he needs moving off-world."

"So we're off to Persephone?"

Zoe shook her head. "No, sweetie, Levington."

He opened his eyes slowly and plied her with little gentle kisses. "Remind me again why we're goin' to Levington?"

"Because that's where Lord Warwick bought the horses, *bao bei*. All we have to do is ship them back to his estate. As the Cap'n would say, easy money."

"Okay, I'm convinced."

She smiled against his lips. "But you're still not up."

He pulled back so he could see her face, mischief dancing in his eyes. "Up? You want Up? I can do Up..."

Zoe started laughing, batting at his hands as he tickled her, rubbing himself against her so she could feel how up a man could be. A little strangled laugh in the back of Zoe's throat was the only warning he got then Wash became far too busy to worry about Levington, horses, Lord Warwick Harrow or who the good gorram was going to pilot the ship.

* * * * *

Kaylee stretched from her outstretched hands to her toes, luxuriating in the warmth of the body wrapped against her own. Hardly daring to believe Simon was sleeping in her bed. Of course River knew the moment they set foot back on Serenity but at least she had been discreet this time. Kaylee leaned over Simon and dropped a kiss to his brow, smiling when he mumbled something low and barely coherent that never came out of a dictionary.

As he began to stir she moved down his body, slowly awakening the bits of him that interested her most until with a shudder his eyes snapped open and his hips bucked. "Kaylee!"

She could not talk but smiled around him, her tongue adding sensations as her hands got busy taking him closer and closer to the gorram edge. His eyes rolled back, his groan a long extenuated moan of ecstasy. He was so gorram close and Kaylee knew it, bringing him to the edge again and again while her happy mouth worshipped and licked him, egging him on until with a shout he errupted in her mouth, the aftershooks ripping through him as she washed him clean with her tongue not missing a single drop.

He lay back astounded, his eyes dark with passion but tinged with disbelief. "That was so sneaky..." Kaylee smiled smugly at him and draped herself over him. "Well there's nothin' to stop you gettin' your own back Simon Tam."

He smiled at her, more relaxed than she could ever remember seeing him. Made her heart flip over just to look at him, so sexy and natural in her bed. Who would've thought her dream would ever come true? He kissed her almost chastely. "What time is it?"

"We got time."

"No, you don't understand. River's medication..."

She was immediately contrite. "Oh, *duibuqi*, I wasn't thinkin'." Kaylee leaned back to check her bedside clock. "Um, it's nearly seven."

They sat up together and continued to touch and kiss each for a few minutes then with a mutual sigh they got up. At the look on Kaylee's face Simon touched her shoulder and gave her a little soft smile. "We have the rest of our lives Kaylee, no need to try to cram everything in over the first twenty four hours."

She grinned. "Nah, I know, it's just..." She sighed and kissed his hand. "I feel like I've waited so long."

Simon laughed and hugged her. "Was it worth it?"

She wanted to hit him for even thinking it wasn't then realised he was just teasing her, fishing for compliments. It was another thirty minutes before they had finished reassuring each other enough to dress.

"I'll just go check on River."

Kaylee smiled. "I'll fix us up some breakfast."

Then they parted to begin a shiny new day. Simon found River in her room, already dressed and looking like her night had gone a lot less happily than his own. It filled him with a rush of guilt which she shook off. "Not my nightmares."

He had no idea what she was talking about. "River? Who's having nightmares?"

That was when they heard it. The heart rending shriek. With a flash of alarm Simon realised it was coming from Inara's shuttle. By the time he had grabbed his medkit and reached the shuttle door Shepherd Book, Wash, Zoe and Jayne were already there. The Shepherd knocked cautiously on the door, "Inara? Inara, please open the door. It's Shepherd Book."

Simon realised someone was missing. "Where's the Captain?"

Kaylee tried to reassure him. "Oh, Cap'n was with 'nara last night. Somethin' about a nightmare."

The look on his face made Kaylee's heart twist. "No, it ain't like that Simon. Cap'n would never do nothin' to 'nara..."

Impatient, Jayne forced the door and they all bowled in. The sight that greeted them froze them in their tracks. Inara was sitting naked on the floor, her arms wrapped around her as she wept. Her eyes were closed and she was rocking herself backwards and forwards. Simon worked his way passed the others and dropped to his knees. Hesitant hands reaching out to Inara's shoulders, wanting to find out just what in *diyu* was wrong but not sure if she was even awake. Shepherd Book's voice made him look up in time to gratefully accept the blanket being handed to him. "Thanks."

Book turned to usher the others out of the room, his look grave. River's face was sad, her eyes fastened on Inara. "You can run but you can't hide."

Kaylee put an arm around her. "Come on, sweetie, let's let Simon do his job."

"He can't heal her."

Zoe gave River a sharp look, hoping this had nothing to do with the Captain. "Why not?"

"Happened a long time ago but the memory's as fresh as today."

"What happened?" Said Jayne, all manner of confused and getting grouchy.

"A lady doesn't talk about such things." Said River primly.

Simon was loathe to shake Inara, knowing it could be dangerous to wake someone who was sleep walking. Whatever trauma Inara was reliving it was a very painful one. The best he could do was keep her warm and stay with her until she came out of it. Then would come the task of trying to find out just what in the nine hells had brought this on.

"River," Said Simon carefully. "Do you know what happened?"

She nodded.

"River," Said Book gently, his voice pitched to be soothing and reassuring. "You have to tell us so that Simon can help Inara."

"She doesn't need a doctor, she needs forgiveness. Absolution."

The room went deadly quiet. After several minutes of painful silence Wash could keep silent no longer. "What does she need forgiveness for?"

"He took her against her will, used drugs. She couldn't fight and no one would take any notice of her cries for help. Those she trusted betrayed her but the innocent paid with their lives." River paused, such a sad look on her face that Kaylee wanted to cry. "Every now and again the memories come back." She paused and looked at the Shepherd as if he would be the best one to understand. "It's why she can't go back."

"Go back where?"

River glanced at Inara but the Companion was still in her own private hell. "Sihnon."

Kaylee gasped and put a hand over her mouth. "Are you sayin' that whatever's causin' the nightmares happened on Sihnon?"

River nodded. "*Qu*. She wanted to be House Mistress," She said sadly. "But the price was too high. And now she can never go back but in her head she never leaves."

* * * * *

CHINESE GLOSSARY: (Mandarin - Pinyin)

*bao bei* = precious/treasure *duibuqi* = sorry *diyu* = hell *qu* = yes (lit.go)


Monday, April 4, 2005 2:25 PM


Okay this gets a double Wow. The love between the couples, Z/W and K/S was absolutely heartwarming. As for Inara...poor, poor Inara. That's such a traumatic experience to have lived through and having to relive the memories of it in her nightmares is unbearable. My heart really aches for her. Hopefully someone, maybe Mal, will be able to help her confront her pain and put a stop to the nightmares.

Tuesday, April 5, 2005 1:11 AM


Ooh la! Am I seeing a Simon/Inara parallel as well now?

Thank goodness for River. Where would we be without her?

And - just to say it again - I am *staggered* by how quickly you write. Staggered.

Tuesday, April 5, 2005 3:15 AM


Oh, wow! This is just getting better and better. It looks like Inara's got her own demons as well, and that no one on the ship can help her. More, please!

- Soul


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His head still ached from the rutting probe but after the men had satisfied themselves that his story was true a thousand questions peppered the air like machine gun fire.

The vessel was shiny, sleek and black with nowhere near the bulk of an Alliance ship. Something about the way it moved through the Black was more than a little creepifying.

Personally she didn't care if Serenity was towed off to a junk yard and stripped into spare parts. She had promised the ship to Jer and his crew as a bonus but it looked like scavengers had beaten them to it.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS: 2. "Counting Chickens"
The fact that her eyes were hard and sharp with intelligence kind of chilled him. Smart women always made him uneasy, it just weren't natural.

What in the nine hells were they so afraid of? Then he remembered Tracy. The body mailed to them by their old war buddy and all the trouble that had brought down on them.

If it was too gorram wet to hunt for rabbits what in the nine hells was his son really hunting? And was it something on four legs or two?

The man was in a terrible condition, his pulse weak, and for some reason he was soaking wet which did nothing to staunch the blood soaking through his clothing and seeping from the poorly tended wound where he had been shot.

THE DICHOTOMY SERIES: 9. "All The King's Men"
The man sighed like the weight of the of the 'Verse was on his shoulders but unlike anyone else he looked like he could carry the weight.

THE DICHOTOMY SERIES: 8. "All The King's Horses"
Without warning something came through the opening and rolled with a metallic clang across the ground before exploding.

THE DICHOTOMY SERIES: 7. "Friend or Foe"
Then he found himself falling, the whole world silent as in slow motion the hordes of *diyu* came to swallow him up and everything disintegrated in fire, blood and pain.