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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL
Set between "Rosemary" and "A Different Kind of Unification," Mal tries for a miracle and Jayne becomes more and more of a mystery.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1384 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
The next time Serenity was planetside, Mal found out the hard way that rosemary was not a spice common folk could afford, but after an hour or so of trying to haggle the vendors down with little to no success, Mal gave in and paid the steep price. Zoe and her baby were worth every bit of it, he decided, even though he blew most of their grocery budget on the smallish canister and all he had to cook with it was protein mush, rice and canned peas.
He spent the better part of the afternoon in the kitchen pondering how much rosemary was enough for six servings-worth of protein. He never did pay the Shepherd no mind when he was cooking, and it was an action he was regretting. Finally, he reckoned that if a tablespoon was good, a cup was better, and up-ended the tin over the mixing bowl.
Mal was too busy watching Zoe at dinner to notice the faces his crew were making, until Jayne heaved a loud, exaggerated sigh. "What's your problem, Jayne?" Mal asked, annoyed.
"Sick of it's my problem," Jayne said. "Zoe, gei ji ren zhi fan shi gaung liang, quit pushin' that go se around your plate an' eat it!"
Zoe bristled. "Since when do I take orders from the hired gun?"
"Since when would Wash want you starvin' his baby to death?" Jayne shot back, and everyone gaped at him, including Zoe.
"Man's got a point," Mal said, deciding to use Jayne's shock value to his advantage. "Can't take care of the baby if you can't take care of yourself. Eat up."
Zoe fumed silently for a moment. "Smells good," she admitted grudgingly.
"Tastes like ass," Jayne replied. "But you'll eat it anyway."
Zoe took a bite of her dinner and made a choking noise.
"You okay?" Mal said quickly.
"Always did wonder what ass tasted like, sir," Zoe deadpanned. "Now I know. What exactly did you do to this, Cap'n?"
"Do to it?" Mal frowned. "Just put rosemary in it, like Shepherd used to done."
"But Shepherd could cook," Zoe said, smiling for what everyone was fairly sure was the first time since Wash's death.
"It's the thought that counts, Cap'n," Kaylee grinned, patting Simon's hand. Simon's fork was chasing a pea around his plate, studiously avoiding the fried protein mash patty. "An' it was a nice thought."
Simon was running through a mental check list of the tests he'd need to do after supper. "How far along?" he asked abruptly.
Zoe opened her mouth to speak, but River interrupted. "Four months, twelve days and approximately seven hours since the moment of conception. They were saying goodbye."
"They're good men," Zoe said absently, her mind wandering while Kaylee rubbed her feet just the way Inara had taught her.
"Hmm?" Kaylee asked. "Who, Mal an' Jayne?"
Zoe nodded. "For criminals, anyhow." A serene smile curved her lips. "Almost makes it okay," she murmured.
"Never 'spected Jayne to step up an' help, least of all when the baby ain't his," Kaylee smiled. "Cap'n's always been an honorable man, but Jayne never struck me so."
"I expect we're like to find Jayne's full of surprises," Zoe said thoughtfully.
"Doc says it'll be any time now," Zoe said, almost apologetically. Jayne grunted in response, his eyes never leaving the gun parts spread out on the table, waiting to be cleaned, oiled, and reassembled.
"Anytime," she echoed, tapping her fingers impatiently.
Jayne looked up. "Can't annoy the baby outta there," he commented, with a pointed look at her tapping fingers. Jayne was just grumpy because Mal had taken Simon and River on their latest job and left him to babysit the pregnant lady. "Don't work that way."
"An' I suppose you know how it does work?" Zoe asked, quirking an eyebrow. "Jayne, if you know how to get this little girl outta me an' into the world, I suggest you start talkin'."
Jayne recalled hearing the whores at Nandi's talking about how having sex or stimulating the mother's nipples could bring on contractions, when Petaline had been about to pop, and he blushed, something unheard of. "I know a couple-a ways, Zoe, but you ain't gonna want me doin' neither of 'em to ya. Best I can offer is to walk with ya. They say as walkin's good for bringin' on labor."
Zoe was curious, because there weren't many things that made Jayne blush, but she let it slide. "Come on then," she said. "Put your girl back together an' let's get to walkin'."
When Mal, Simon and River pulled into the cargo bay, they found Kaylee with a mop and a big smile. "Zoe's water broke," she told them excitedly.
"Where is she?" Mal demanded. "Is she okay?"
"Oh, sure," Kaylee said calmly. "She an' Jayne are walkin'."
"Walkin', right, 'cause a nine-an'-a-half-month pregnant lady should be walkin' 'cause...?"
"Walking helps move the baby into the correct position for birthing," Simon put in, "it helps loosen up the mother's hips, and it aids in dilation of the cervix."
"S'what Jayne said," Kaylee nodded. At Simon's baffled look, she clarified, "but not in so many words."
"Hurry," River said, shoving Mal and Simon into motion. "She isn't yet, she's waiting to become."
Monday, February 13, 2006 12:32 PM
Monday, February 13, 2006 12:38 PM
Monday, February 13, 2006 4:33 PM
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Tuesday, February 14, 2006 1:53 AM
Monday, February 27, 2006 5:00 AM
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