TEMPTATION SERIES: 10. "Additions"
Sunday, July 17, 2005

"Zoe's news shocks the Captain and causes all manner of excitement among the rest of the crew."



SUMMARY: "Zoe's news shocks the Captain and causes all manner of excitement among the rest of the crew." 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.


"Firefly" story

Written by Alison M. DOBELL

* * * * *

"She's what?"

Simon only just managed to surpress a grin. The infirmary was suddenly a crowded place but at least Zoe looked a whole lot better than she had when he and Wash had brought her in. Lying on the infirmary bed she was staring at the doctor as if he had taken leave of his senses. Through his shock, Wash was not sure what to think. "I think I was perfectly clear the first few times, Wash." Said Simon. "*Ta huaiyun le*, I'm assuming you are the father?"

He got joint glares back from Wash and Zoe. The Captain just stood staring. He looked completely stunned. Behind him Kaylee was beaming, dancing on her feet with excitement. Too happy to keep it all in. River stood next to the Captain, resisting the urge to take his hand. Watching Kaylee's reaction with affection and amusement.

"Pregnant? *Zhen de ma*?"

Simon beamed back at his wife. "Yes Kaylee, really. Eight weeks."

Inara came crowding in behind the others with Book and Jayne bringing up the rear. The Captain seemed to be slowly coming out of his shock. "How did this happen?"

"I'm sure you're familiar with the mechanics, Captain." Said Book. The Captain blinked at the man's odd and faintly icy tone but was too stunned to really take a lot in. This couldn't be happening. A baby? On a SHIP? What the good gorram had she been thinking? Then he saw Wash and Zoe exchange a particularly sappy look and inwardly groaned. Of course, she hadn't been thinking.

* * * * *

The commons area was particularly lively. All anyone could talk about was the baby. River smiled but kept getting distracted. The Shepherd watched her surreptitiously for a while. Noticed the Captain was much quieter than usual, his silence eagerly filled by a chattering Wash and an enthusiastic Kaylee with Inara and Zoe chipping in with a comment here and there. Zoe was sitting on the couch with Wash's arms wrapped carefully round her as if she were fragile and might break. Simon had done all the tests and confirmed it was true, he had also worked out a dietry plan to make sure Zoe got all the nutrients and vitamins she would need for her and the baby. A thought occurred to him. "Captain?"

The doctor had to say it twice before he got a response. "Hmm?"

"Is there any chance we'll be stopping somewhere so that I can restock the infirmary? Apart from the usual things it might be a good idea to stock up on vitamins." Simon could not be absolutely sure that the Captain had heard him or had taken in his request. "Uh yeah, sure." Still a yes was a yes in any language and he had witnesses. He decided that was good enough.

Shepherd Book watched and listened to the banter and conversations going back and forth, the mood lively and happy, even Jayne joining in and not saying anything crude or crass which was something of a minor miracle. Quietly he slipped away. Sitting curled up in one of the armchairs River stared at nothing, her mind elsewhere, her thoughts growing darker as if someone had stolen all the light in the 'verse. After a couple of minutes she seemed to come back to herself and stared off in the direction Book had gone. A small crease appearing on her brow, then Kaylee was yammering away at her about having a pool to guess the baby's name and River got caught up in the excitement and pleasure and forgot all about shadows and darkness and how the enemy sometimes wore the face of a friend.

* * * * *

It was not that the Preacher did not know what to do, he did. It was just that he had got comfortable. Used to this place and the people in it. They drew him into their company as if he was a valued part of it but at times like these the differences between them were chasms too wide to cross. Yet the articles of his faith were very specific and there could be no deviation. At stake were a man's soul and a girl's honour. Trembling a little, Book took up his bible and dropped to his knees. Then closing his eyes he began to pray, asking God for strength and guidance. When he was done he went in search of the Captain. Fortified in his faith he knew he was doing the right thing.

* * * * *

Once over the initial shock Wash was ecstatic. His face lit up with joy and pleasure, his eyes shining with love and the kind of child-like delight that always turned Zoe's heart to sap. Not that she would ever admit it. She was so proud of her sweet adorable husband, so awed by his generous heart and the depth of his love for her, so happy to be bearing his child at last. Zoe had been afraid that once her suspicions were confirmed Wash would be angry, thinking she had deliberately gotten pregnant to get the baby she had always wanted. But it hadn't happened that way. She had been taking precautions though Simon had stressed nothing could be a hundred percent. The only way to ensure that she could not fall pregnant would be through surgery and neither Zoe nor Wash wanted that because one day they did want to have a family. Just not out here in the Black where survival was an every day struggle and even tomorrow held no guarantees. But now the decision had been made for them, the pressure was off, and with it any attendant guilt or worry.

"*Bao bei*, can you believe it? We're goin' to have a baby!" Cried Wash for the zillionth time, his face alight with awe.

Zoe chuckled, her face a wreath of smiles. How could she ever doubt her love for this man? "Yes, *zhangfu*, and I can't wait to meet that child."

Wash kissed her gently, his hands roaming her body but always coming back to caress the slight swell of her stomach, his fingers light, the warmth of his hands possessive. They were on the bridge, Wash sitting in the pilot's chair with Zoe on his lap. Wash kissed her deeply then trailed little kisses off her chin, down her throat and chest to her belly, his wife's chuckles turning into deep throaty laughter as if he was tickling her. Both knew it for the heady delight it was. The celebration of a miracle in the making. One that would carry their genes. "We are goin' to make one beautiful baby, Zoe!" Gushed Wash.

"An' excitin' as that may be - an' I am happy for you both, indeed I am - it don't get us to Richmond."

Zoe partly turned her head as the Captain entered the bridge but made no move to get up. "Sorry sir, just enjoyin' the moment."

"An' so you should. Not wantin' to stop you havin' moments Zoe but this here distraction of my pilot has to stop." He paused, unable to keep a smile or two from slipping in or the twinkle out of his normally sombre and solemn eyes. "An' I promise you can go on makin' new moments the second we land, *dong ma*?"

"You want us to time this to the second, sir?"

He flushed slightly. It still amazed Wash how easily his wife could make the Captain blush. Or squirm. Right now Mal was doing a manly job of trying not to do either. "Not sayin' that Zoe, don't you go puttin' words in my mouth."

"Wouldn't dream of it, sir," She deadpanned then shot a look at Wash. "Got other plans for my mouth."

The Captain took a step back. "Woah, Richmond, Wash."

Wash couldn't keep the amusement off his face but managed to spare the Captain the sight of him laughing outright at him. Had to leave the man a little shred of dignity. Well. Maybe a shred of a shred. "Yes sir, I'll lay in a course right away." Zoe shifted enough so that he could patch in the co-ordinates then Wash turned his head. "Why are we goin' to Richmond? I thought we were going to New Dunsmere?"

The Captain was half way through the door when he paused to call back over his shoulder. "Don't ask me, Preacher got some Abbey he needs to visit."

Then the Captain was gone and Wash could turn his attention back to the very warm and lushious woman beginning to growl low in the back of her throat as she devoured him. "Work, work, work...." He moaned, his lips busy responding to the ardent needs of his wife.

* * * * *

Kaylee was so very happy and inside that feeling was her own desire, a hidden thing now longing to be released. She loved kids and wanted nothing more than to have a whole passel of 'em by Simon. Now Zoe had broken the taboo the Captain couldn't complain if a year down the line she and Simon started bringing young uns into the 'verse. What could be more natural? 'Sides, they were family and that was what family did. Convincing Simon would be no effort at all. A woman only told a man what she wanted him to know, no more and no less. Her daddy always said she had natural talent an' not just in fixin' engines.

Sated after their love making Simon gradually came to. So warm and comfortable he didn't want to move only the com had gone off with Wash cheerily announcing their imminent arrival on Richmond. Stirring in Kaylee's arms Simon smiled as those generous lips convinced him that waking up with the one he loved was his most favourite thing in the entire 'verse.

* * * * *

Jayne couldn't understand the Preacher. The man had been getting more and more ansty the closer they got to landing. Even the offer of pumping iron had made no impact. He huffed and hid the tiny bit of hurt he felt at being so soundly ignored. It was as if Book's body was present but his head was somewhere else. What in the nine hells was the matter with the man? They were in the cargo hold waiting for Wash to set them down. Jayne turned his head and frowned at the Preacher. "I done somethin' wrong?"

The man started, as if he had completely forgotten anyone else was there. "*Duibuqi* Jayne, you were sayin'?"

The mercenary's frown deepened. "I done somethin' wrong? On'y you ain't said two words to me."

Book blinked at him for a moment then seemed to realise what he was saying. "No, no, nothing like that. I simply have my mind on other things."

"What things?"

"It's been a long while since I visited my brothers at Zion Abbey."

"You thinkin' they might not let ya in?"

The Preacher actually laughed in surprise. It was good to laugh again but the humour quickly vanished. "No Jayne, nothing like that. Just lost in thought that's all."

The big man looked mighty relieved. "Okay then, just so long as ya ain't sickenin' for nothin' an' it ain't my fault."

The slight bump confirmed they had landed, the Captain's voice sailing over the com to let all and sundry know they were on Richmond and telling them they would be there for 24 hours. Book knew it was longer than the Captain needed to stay but he wanted to give the Shepherd enough time to visit the Abbey and spend some time with his own people. Book felt guilty for not explaining to the Captain the why of it but believed a little artifice was necessary. He hoped the day would come when the Captain would not only forgive him but thank him for his timely intervention. As the ramp lowered the rest of the crew began to join them in the cargo bay. The Captain was smiling at something Inara said and Kaylee had her arm in Simon's, her eyes aglow. So full of happy it gave the Preacher a twinge.

"So, you won't be takin' your shuttle then?"

Inara shook her head, the dark luxuriant curls of hair bobbing round her pretty face. "No, someone's meeting me."

His eyebrows rose. "Meetin' you is he?"

The Companion smiled at his misunderstanding. "It isn't a client, Mal."

"Didn't know you had friends on Richmond."

"Even whores can have friends, Captain."

He flushed slightly, all kinds of uncomfortable having such words with the crew standing right there listening to everything. And he hadn't meant it that way it was just sometimes talking to Inara was like walking through a gorram minefield only it didn't look like no minefield until you made a wrong step and the whole rutting thing blew up in your face. It was the Shepherd who broke the awkward moment.

"Inara, I believe your 'friend' has arrived."

Inara gave an overly bright smile and nodded her thanks. "*Xie xie ni*."

"24 hours." Repeated the Captain, as if needing to remind her who was boss. She simply smiled at him then turned and walked down the ramp, the Companion waiting at the bottom of it giving her a heart warming smile. The two women hugged briefly then walked off arm in arm together. Jayne was beginning to feel a mite hot. If this was a women thing he wondered how much they'd charge to let him watch.

"Okay people, things to do an' such. Simon? Can't see no reason that you an' Kaylee can't take little sis with you there bein' no Alliance presence to speak of but be careful mind? Don't want no complications."

"Thank you, Captain. I'll also pick up those medical supplies we need."

"Good thinkin'. We leave this time tomorrow - sharp. Everybody got that?"

There were sundry nods and murmurs of agreement. Zoe and Wash had elected to stay on the ship. Mal didn't ask any questions, sure as he could be that the two would be busier than the rest of them put together. Maybe he would go take a stroll outside his own self. Anything to get away from the rythmic thumping he knew would echo from their bunk. Some things a Captain didn't need to hear. The crew were drifting off, Jayne hurrying as if on a mission from God. The Captain smirked to himself knowing just what sort of entertainment Jayne Cobb was looking to find. It was a marvel the man's pecker didn't just fall off. He was startled to find only himself and the Preacher on the ramp. He turned his head and frowned slightly at Book.

"Wasn't you off to that fine Abbey of yours, Preacher? Seems to me that's why we made this little detour."

"Yes, and I appreciate you doing that, Captain. I was wondering - hoping actually - that you would care to join me."

For a moment the Captain just stared at him as if he was speaking some foreign language then his face broke into a smile, his amusement self evident. "Reckon you're forgettin' your first days on Serenity, Shepherd. Told you then an' I'll tell you now, you're welcome on my boat - God ain't."

"This won't be on your 'boat', Captain."

The Captain paused and looked at him more intently. "Why so insistent? You know my views on all that religiosity."

"Yes, and I respect your right to that opinion - as flawed as it is." Book quickly raised a hand to still the Captain's objections. "*Duibuqi*, that was unforgivable of me. I am not here to pass judgement."

That raised two eyebrows. "Yes you are. Men of God can't breathe without passin' judgement. Threatenin' honest folk with hellfire an' damnation an' such. Anythin' to get people to accept the dogma an' blind faith peddled by an absent God."

"I don't wish to argue with you Captain but I was hoping you would come with me. There's someone I would very much like you to meet."

"Meet? Me?" The very idea seemed to be too amusing for words and it took the Captain a minute or two to be able to speak again. He did not after all want to offend Book. "Sorry Preacher but I got other plans."

"Oh it won't take long, Captain, and I would consider it a personal favour."

Again, that fleeting look of reassessment. "Would you now?" Mal said softly. He waited but it seemed the Preacher had said all he intended to say on the subject. Content to wait for the Captain's answer. Mal really didn't want to go but he respected Book. Liked the man and considered him a good friend. What could it hurt to humour him just this once? Especially as his agreement seemed to matter so much to the man. He nodded, his mood sombre now. "Shiny, if it means so much to you but I ain't promisin' to change my view, *dong ma*? Don't want you thinkin' my mind on this matter is for turnin'."

Book hid the intense feeling of relief that swept through him then nodding to the Captain led him down the ramp and off towards the Abbey.

"How far did you say this Priory of yours was?"

"Not far, and it isn't a Priory, Captain, it's an Abbey."

* * * * *

Kaylee was enjoying the chance to look around the shops and stalls, admiring all the pretties but happiest most of all because she was with Simon. He gave her an indulgent smile and they shared a lingering kiss. Kaylee felt a prick of guilt. "Why do you suppose River wouldn't come with us? She hasn't been off Serenity in months."

"Who knows? I've given up trying to fathom out what's going through her mind but she seems happy and healthy enough and at least on Serenity she's safe."

She gave her husband an anxious look. "You sayin' Richmond ain't safe?"

He laughed lightly and dropped a kiss on the end of her nose turning her alarm into affection. "*Bu qu*, a poor choice of words. I mean she feels safe on Serenity."

"Yeah but it's a shame an' all, with the sun shinin' an' everythin' so pretty an' all." But Kaylee wasn't looking at the sunshine, or the stalls or the pretties. She was looking at Simon. And if he was any judge all she wanted to do right now was eat him up. More relaxed than he could ever remember being, Simon leaned down to whisper in her ear. "We have 24 hours, *bao bei*, and I've been saving. Why don't we find somewhere with a hot tub and room service?"

Her eyes widened. "You mean... like a... like a..."

"A hotel." He finished for her. "You do know what day it is, don't you?"

Kaylee fought competing emotions then did the math, her eyes widening as she squealed in delight. "Two years!"

Ignoring the looks they were drawing, Simon wrapped his arms around her and grinned with happiness. "Happy Anniversary, *xin gan*!"

Kaylee did not answer, she was too busy kissing the stuffing out of her very shiny husband.

* * * * *

CHINESE GLOSSARY: (Mandarin - Pinyin)

*ta huaiyun le* = she's become pregnant *zhen de ma*? = really? *bao bei* = precious/treasure *zhangfu* = husband *dong ma* = understand? *duibuqi* = sorry *xie xie ni* = thank you *bu qu* = no (lit. no go) *xin gan* = sweetheart


Sunday, July 17, 2005 2:14 PM


Amobell, you never fail to amaze!! This is a shiny series, and it just keeps coming up roses. Your grasp of the characters is very complete and adaptable, so I enjoy reading whatever you come up with!!!

Here's to the next chapter!!

Keep Flyin',


Tuesday, August 2, 2005 12:50 AM


More sweetness than a box of chocolates - and a big box at that! Lovely ending.

And Mal? Totally adorable. I love Flustered!Mal.

Jayne as ever a joy.

Simon "I'm assuming you are the father". Hee - perfect! Guess he only risked that because Zoe was feeling poorly. *g*

And Book - ooh, I hope his motives are good.

Saturday, November 26, 2005 4:10 PM


*squeak* It's late at night here, so I'm pretty much just searching for the Silee parts and this one made me squeak :) Shiny!


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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.