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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - DRAMA
Sometimes you have to make the best of a bad situation and, sometimes, you find you're better off for it.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 1663 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
Ooooh, small chapter tonight. But important. This was what was supposed to be tacked onto chapter 3. A little truth, a little trouble.
Disclaimer: Only one is mine, the rest belong to Joss.
Comments: A hint, just a little taste, but it in no way really explains anything. Why, yes, I am made of EVIL.
Feedback: Is crack. Comment here or email: email@example.com
Previous Chapters: one, two and three.
“Shh. Come on, it’s okay, shh.” She brushes the hair off his forehead, runs her hands over the side of his face, her voice is whispering. And pleading. “Shush, James, it’s okay.”
He’s digging his hands, claw like, into her sides, and she’s got him wrapped under her clothes. Holding him tight, holding him like the lifeline he is. Her fingers press his lips together, slide against her own sweat slick on his face.
“Hey.” She jumps when there’s a voice near her, his breath rank and rotten. “You keep that brat quiet, you hear me?”
Kaylee nods, eyes wide.
“You shut him up.” He shoves something at her side and waits until her free hand closes over it. “Or I will shut him up for you, do you understand?”
She keeps nodding, closing her eyes so she can’t see anything. It doesn’t help. There are still screams on the outside, the horrible, tearing sound of flesh and terror.
“This ain’t a game, little girl.” They’re only whispers, but they feel like they’re going to scald the skin right off her neck. “Those’re reavers out there, you know it? They find us an’ we’re all dead, baby or not.”
Dead. Kaylee’s hand presses the cloth over James’ mouth. Dead, just like her daddy who pushed them into this vault and then turned back to fight. James struggles for several long, excruciating seconds. Dead, just like her momma who was stayin’ at home and too far to go back for.
Her heart stops the second James does.
He’s limp against her. His small, impossibly tiny body hanging loose in her hands. Her nostrils twitch with the acrid scent of chloroform, but she doesn’t think that’s why the tears stream down her face.
“Happy birthday, baby.”
"James?" Kaylee jerked straight up, hands patting herself down to check for him, before her head swung wildly and her eyes blindly scanned the room, searching for movement, some tiny little body somewhere. "James?"
"Kaylee, it's alright." Inara rushed over. "He's fine, I promise. You were just sleeping."
"But..." She forced herself to breathe, the common room coming into focus around her. "But... I..."
There was a blanket twisted around her, stilling her, making her skin itch. She tugged on it, needed to get it off her, away from her, needed to move. A hand came out to brush the hair out of her eyes and Kaylee pulled back sharply, threw herself backwards to escape it and her head hit the wall.
Inara blinked in surprise, but covered it quickly.
"You have to come and look at this, mei mei." Inara smiled calmly. "It's too adorable for words."
Kaylee stood up, dropped the blanket on the couch and walked over to the cargo bay. Her legs shook like jelly as she stood next to Inara. The two of them peered around the door and Kaylee stopped still. It hit her deep low in the belly, like a twisting of her womb.
"Oh, Inara." She couldn't find the right words. "Oh, just look."
There, in front of her, Jayne lay back on the weight bench, hefting a large iron bar with both weights removed, his legs were steady on either side and his arms bulged as he lifted. Lower on his chest, spread out over his abdomen, lay James on his back.
Lifting a wooden broom handle.
"They're so sweet together, aren't they?"
Her knees gave way and she felt herself sliding to the floor.
“Kaylee?” Inara knelt down next to her. “Are you alright, what’s wrong?”
“Nothing.” It came like a sigh. “Oh, nothin’, not no more.”
She leaned around the doorframe to catch another glimpse of them.
“Oh, ‘Nara, it’s so good.” She took a breath and looked back into confused brown eyes. “A boy oughtta get along with his daddy.”
“Kaylee!” There was a pause. “Kaywinnit Lee Frye!”
Sometime later, Kaylee found herself sitting at the common room table as Inara poured tea with trembling hands. She frowned as she watched them, Inara was always so perfect, so pristine in her rituals.
“You ain’t surprised, Inara, you can’t say you are. I know you can count.”
“Well, no.” It was the first thing Inara had said since she’d helped Kaylee up off the floor. “I can’t say I wasn’t expecting that. What I am surprised about is that you would lie so blatantly, you stood right there and told him outright that James wasn’t his. And you’ve been lying ever since.”
“I had to.”
“Don’t you think you’re being awfully unfair? To Jayne and to James?”
“Fair?” It rose bitter in her throat. “There ain’t nothin’ fair about any of this, Inara, nothing at all.”
“No, I don’t suppose there is.” She could see the disproval in Inara’s face. It surprised her that it didn’t hurt, surprised her that it didn’t even hurt not to hurt. “But you have a responsibility, at the very least, to Jayne.”
“It ain’t about Jayne. And it ain’t about me, either.” There wasn’t any other way she knew how to explain it. “Everything I do is about my son, Inara, this is all for him.”
“Well, then, wouldn’t it make sense…?”
“To what? You’ve seen him.” It was hard, sometimes, not to slip right into defensiveness. “Inara, he can’t even hear Wash laugh without bursting into tears. Wash! The man plays with plastic toys, Inara, he don’t scare anyone.”
She waited for Inara to interrupt, but that didn’t happen.
“What do you think would’ve happened? I come back on board, hand Jayne a baby and say ‘here’s the boy I been keepin’ from you for near on two years. How’ve you been keeping? Just dandy, me too’.”
It came out, like releasing infection from a wound.
“I couldn’t do that. I couldn’t let the first thing James see in him, be Jayne yellin’ at me. Or takin’ his anger out by punchin’ the wall or whatever else was close. He never woulda gone near Jayne again.”
“I understand that, I do.” Inara paused. “But don’t you think you’re underestimating Jayne a little?”
“I couldn’t do it, I couldn’t risk it, Inara.” The tea was warm in her hands. “An’ it might hurt Jayne, I know it’s probably gonna hurt me, but I couldn’t risk messing it up for my son. I already did that plenty.”
“You do realize that Jayne most likely assumes you were with someone straight after you left? Simon too. The timeline…”
“The timeline don’t work any other way, ‘Nara, hell, even Simon knows that. I think he does, anyway. I couldn’t’ve been any more’n three months when I left, though I didn’t know it, ‘cause that’s all that me an’… well, anyway…”
Thinking back that far brought back memories she’d tried hard to bury.
“I had James not five months after I’d been planet side, he was early. Doc said he was real tiny, but he’s caught up now. Fact is, he’s mighty smart for bein’ fifteen months.”
There it was again, she couldn’t help it, that spark of pride that welled up in her voice whenever she spoke of him.
“And hell.” She sighed again. “Jayne can think what he likes about me, he can accuse me of sleepin’ with the whole gorram ‘Verse, as long as he treats our son the way he is now.”
Our son. The words should have stuck in her throat, they didn’t.
“I still don’t know…”
“You look at them, Inara.” She pointed back into the bay. “You look at Jayne with his son and you tell me I done wrong.”
“Aw, hell kid.” Jayne wrapped one arm around James and anchored him down as he sat up, bringing the two of them upright. “I think that’s enough.”
“Yeah.” He laughed as he picked the boy up and spun him around so they were face to face. “Big, strong ones. Like me.”
They were bright, clear eyes, those little ones that stared back at him.
“I don’t care what your mama says, kid, she’s gotta have her reasons.” Jayne leaned forward, nudged the small brow with his own. “That right there is your granddaddy Cobb’s nose. There ain’t no mistakin’ that.”
more to come...
Saturday, March 25, 2006 5:55 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 5:59 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 7:37 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 7:57 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 8:22 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 8:46 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 10:11 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 11:14 AM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 12:41 PM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 2:39 PM
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Saturday, March 25, 2006 4:28 PM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 4:57 PM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 7:07 PM
Saturday, March 25, 2006 11:24 PM
Sunday, March 26, 2006 10:56 AM
Sunday, March 26, 2006 11:49 AM
Sunday, March 26, 2006 1:12 PM
Monday, March 27, 2006 4:08 AM
Monday, March 27, 2006 6:52 AM
Tuesday, March 28, 2006 3:32 PM
Tuesday, May 30, 2006 2:23 AM
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