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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - DRAMA
Some wounds can be seen, others cannot. The crew struggles to come to terms with the attack. Simon/Kaylee. Mal/Inara. PLEASE read the warning in chapter 1. 31st story in a series.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 2140 RATING: 9 SERIES: FIREFLY
Thanks to everyone for the favorable reviews in the first chapter. I expected a lot of people to be real angry.
As always, let the story play out before getting too mad at me, K?
Do leave reviews telling me what you liked or didn't or what you'd like to see. They do make me post faster :)
Mal swallowed convulsively and without breaking eye contact with Inara, said, “Zoe, see to –“
“Already on it, Sir.” Zoe launched herself out of the mule and hurried toward Kaylee while Mal bounded up the steps to Inara, his heart pounding in his throat.
Inara pushed him away as his hands frantically searched her for injuries. She indicated her shuttle with a wave of a very shaky and blood-covered hand. “In there.” She didn’t wait for his response before she hurried down the steps to Kaylee’s side, leaving Mal staring after her momentarily stunned.
River knelt beside Simon, holding his bleeding head in her lap and whispering unintelligible words in his ear. Zoe relinquished her spot beside Kaylee as Inara reached the frightened girl and moved toward Simon. Seeing his crew taking care of their wounded, Mal made his way into Inara’s shuttle.
His mouth fell open as he took in the sight of the dead man lying on Inara’s formerly immaculately beautiful bed. Blood stained the silks and as he got closer, he could see puncture marks on the man’s neck, where blood still flowed out of his lifeless body.
Mal swallowed nervously and left the shuttle, caring more for the health of his crew than in the disposal of their assailant’s bodies. When he reached the catwalk, he stared disbelievingly down at the sight below.
River still cradled Simon’s head in her lap, but now Zoe was leaning over them, checking him for further injuries. Inara held a trembling and sobbing Kaylee in her arms, the blood covering the older woman seeping into Kaylee’s clothing. Jayne tended to his own wound, attempting to staunch the blood flow with one hand.
Out of the corner of his eye, Mal saw movement and without thought he drew his sidearm and discharged it before the man who Simon had knocked out had the chance to get his bearings.
Zoe glanced up at the catwalk and inclined her head down toward the unconscious Simon. “Need help with him, Sir. He’s out. And injured.”
Mal nodded and moved down the steps quickly to her side, comfortable that everyone else was well taken care of – for the moment. He glanced quickly toward Inara and Kaylee, his heart in his throat.
“Need you,” River whispered to her brother, still refusing to relinquish her hold on him. When she glanced over at Inara and Kaylee, her eyes filled with tears. “She needs you. They need you.”
Mal knelt beside them. “Lil’ Albatross, we need to get him someplace more comfortable.”
River nodded, released her brother and stood as Mal and Zoe carried him toward the infirmary. She swallowed hard and walked slowly toward Inara and Kaylee, ignoring Jayne’s grunts as he dragged the bodies of the dead men out of the ship.
River fell to her knees and sobbed when she reached the two women. “I’m sorry. Wasn’t fast enough. Couldn’t get back. Was too late.”
Inara’s voice was devoid of any emotion as she responded. “There was nothing you could have done, River.”
“I didn’t see. I didn’t know. Heard Simon and –“
At the mention of Simon’s name, Kaylee sat up in Inara’s arms and looked around the cargo bay. He was gone and her breath stuck in her throat as she whispered his name.
“Just asleep,” River said sadly, touching Kaylee’s bruised cheek. “He’ll sleep for a long time.”
“No.” Kaylee stood on shaky legs. “I have ta see ‘em.”
“Let’s go get cleaned up first,” Inara suggested as she wrapped her arms around the younger girl’s waist and guided her toward the passenger dorms. “We’re both covered in blood.”
River breath hitched in her throat as she watched the two women she loved most in this ‘verse walk slowly away. She kept telling herself there was nothing she could have done. It was supposed to happen. But it didn’t make the reality of it any easier.
Coming out of the passenger dorms, Mal caught Inara and Kaylee walking into the showers and stopped them with a gentle hand on Inara’s arm.
Inara momentarily flinched at the contact but hid her discomfort with a shaky smile.
Neither woman spoke but Mal could see some unfathomable emotion reflected in both their unblinking eyes. When he opened his mouth to ask, Inara raised her hand. “We need to clean up, Mal. There’s blood all over us.”
“Oh, right. Yes. Okay.” Mal stepped back and let them continue on their way, a sinking feeling settling into the pit of his stomach.
He wanted to wait outside the showers for them to return, but one backward look from Inara changed his mind. He made his way to the infirmary instead and peered in. “How’s he doing?”
Zoe glanced up from where she cleaned the nasty gash on the side of Simon’s head. She had already wrapped his shoulder as best she could but the wound had been deep. She’d need Simon to diagnose its severity once he woke. “He’s out cold. Nasty cuts but I think he’ll be fine. I’m not the doctor.” She shrugged and went back to her cleaning. She was tense and she was angry but there was nothing to be done about it right now.
A few moments of silence passed and he stepped into the immaculately clean room, not truly sure what to do with himself.
“Kaylee and Inara?” Zoe asked with a small measure of hesitation.
“Cleaning off all the blood.” Mal answered automatically.
Her tone put him instantly on the defensive and he didn’t quite know why. “Well, I’m – going to go check on Jayne and River. I asked them to – dispose of the bodies.”
“Yes, Sir.” Zoe continued with her work as Mal left, his heart heavy.
Inara waited on the small bench inside the shower room. She’d closed and locked the door so no one could disturb them and simply sat, waiting, reliving every moment of the attack, while tears streaked down her cheeks. She could hear Kaylee sobbing in the shower but the younger girl had insisted she wanted to bathe and Inara had reluctantly agreed. There was no point in keeping any evidence. The men who had done this were dead.
The Companion let her head fall back against the cold metal wall and closed her eyes, tears stinging her cheeks and sobs slipping from between tightly clamped lips as the events of her past came flooding back to her, nearly suffocating her with their intensity.
A young, exquisitely attired Inara smiled graciously as she was lead to the spacious parlor to wait for the arrival of her client. After years of working as a registered Companion, it was the first time she had actually agreed to meet a client in his home.
The evening had progressed well enough but when her client handled her just a bit too roughly, she’d resisted, earning his extreme displeasure.
“No – please, wait –“.
“I paid for service, whore!” The grip the man held on her arms was strong enough to bruise. “And you will give it to me when and where I want it.”
“You – the Guild – it doesn’t condone – if you would just – “
Inara’s protest was cut off as the man’s hand struck her across the cheek. He pushed her onto the bed and took by force that which she had been trained to freely give.
Kaylee couldn’t hear Inara’s sobs over the rush of water beating down on her head. She scrubbed her body furiously until the skin was red and bruised. It crawled. Her skin. With her eyes open or closed she could feel their hands, holding her so tightly it hurt. Her cheek was swollen from where she’d been struck, her head pounded due to having been knocked unconscious, and her arms and legs were bruised from where she’d been held so firmly against those crates.
She leaned against the cold wall, desperately trying to piece together what had happened. One moment she and Simon had been lying together, sated from their lovemaking, the next, she was being attacked by unknown men. She didn’t remember what happened after that but she ached. It wasn’t quite the same weak muscle ache that she felt after a good, long, hard sexin’, but – that’s what Simon had just given her. Kaylee imagined her traumatized mind was simply combining the two events.
She didn’t want to think about what those men had done to her, but she couldn’t not think about it. She’d never been attacked in that way before. Early had threatened it. But these men – they had actually attempted it. When she’d woken up, she’d seen the murderous look on Mal’s face and the two men who had tried to attack her were dead at his feet. She was grateful, of course, but the look on his face had frightened her.
She had no doubt that those men would have killed her had Mal and the others not returned when they had. Simon had done his best, but he was no match for all those men. As it was, he’d taken one down before he’d been knocked unconscious himself. Kaylee sobbed harder as she thought of her husband. The marriage so new, she still absently twisted the silver wedding band around her finger. She needed to get clean and go see him. He would be worried when he woke up and she wasn’t there. Despite wanting to crawl into the darkest, smallest corner of the ship and hide, she needed to be there for Simon.
As the evidence of what had been done to her was washed away, Kaylee knew it would take far longer for the memories to fade than the bruises. And she briefly wondered if maybe she was lucky she couldn’t remember some things. She trembled and wrapped her arms around her waist as the warm water coursed over her body. But then again, maybe wondering for the rest of her life was worse than knowing what truly happened after they’d knocked her out.
When Simon finally woke, all was quiet – too quiet. He tried to lift his head but it pounded so relentlessly that he collapsed back into the pillow with a groan. He took a few deep breaths, the memory of what had happened slowly returning. When his eyes snapped open, he noticed his wife sitting beside him.
Kaylee leaned over him in an instant, her hand flattened along the side of his cheek, her normally bright, cheerful eyes red-rimmed and wide with concern.
“Kaylee?” Simon’s voice was weak, disoriented, as he covered her hand with his. His eyes were wide, taking in her disheveled and haggard appearance. “Are you okay? What – what happened?”
Kaylee felt tears sting her eyes but she forced them back and carefully embraced him. “Cap’n got back and killed ‘em all.”
Simon winced as his injured shoulder ached. He dropped that arm to the bed and hugged her gently with the other. “You’re ok?” He tried to pull away to look into her eyes but she clutched him so tightly and so desperately all he wanted to do was reassure her he was fine.
Her muffled response did nothing to comfort him but he was distracted from asking again by River suddenly settling onto the bed beside him. She pushed a pill into Simon’s hand and stared intently at him until he swallowed it. The tears in her eyes broke Simon’s heart and he immediately reached out to her as Kaylee slipped out of his weak embrace.
“I’m sorry,” River said meekly. There were really no other words.
Simon pushed himself into a seated position and reached for his sister, ignoring the throbbing pain in his head and shoulder as he did so. River didn’t pull away this time, but instead leaned weakly against his uninjured arm. He shot Kaylee a questioning look but she shook her head to assure him they’d lost no one today.
“Jayne’s still complainin’ ‘bout his arm, but he’ll live.” Kaylee joined the siblings on the bed and wrapped her arms around them, taking comfort from their perceived joint strength. When her eyes met River’s the younger girl instantly looked away, some uncomfortable fear settling between them.
“I’m sorry.” River said softly and stood. Before Simon could ask why, she was gone, leaving him wondering what she could possibly have to apologize for.
“Need ta lay back down, Simon. They hit ya pretty good.”
Kaylee helped him lay back down and when he rolled his head toward her, he took her hand. “You’re ok?” He needed to hear her say it.
Kaylee smiled uncertainly. “Right as rain. Everyone’s shiny.”
“Jayne was hurt?”
“Just a little shot. Zoe took care of it while ya was out.”
Simon groaned and closed his eyes. He couldn’t shake the feeling there was something Kaylee was not telling him, but when she crawled into bed and cuddled against his side, he lost himself in the scent and feel of her sweet body pressed against his and fell into a deep, medicated slumber.
Mal found Inara in her shuttle, furiously cleaning the blood that stained her home. He’d just finished helping Zoe mop up his blood-stained cargo bay and Jayne was resting his injured arm. River he’d left with Simon in his and Kaylee’s room. And Serenity, well, her crew had been shaken today but she’d fly true once her lil’ albatross returned to the helm.
Mal’s eyes narrowed as he watched Inara work. There was something precise and methodical about her normally graceful, fluid movements. There was something she was not telling him and he didn’t like secrets. He kept plenty, but he didn’t like them being kept from him.
“Don’t just stand there and stare.” She didn’t bother to turn around. Simply continued with her work. “Turn around and march right back out the way you came.”
Mal glanced down at the bloodied rags in her hands and the pile of ruined bedding on the floor. His heart refused to believe that anything happened while his mind frantically searched for an explanation Inara had yet to give. “I want to help.”
“There’s nothing you can do, Mal.” Her voice was firm and it sent shivers of unexplainable fear down his spine.
He crossed the distance between them and knelt as close as he could without physically touching her. He tensed when he noticed her flinch at his quick movement. “Tell me.”
Inara knew what he wanted. And she wanted him to go. He had to go. At least for now. “I’m fine, Mal. Please just – go. Let me do this.”
Mal pursed his lips. He wanted to argue. He wanted more of an explanation. But he clenched his fists and resolved to wait until she was ready to tell him. He knew not to argue when she had her mind set on something. And he would not force it out of her. “Well, if you need me – I’ll – you just call. I’ll – be here.” He moved toward the entrance and glanced one more time over his shoulder before acquiescing to Inara’s wishes to be left alone.
“This isn’t something you can fix with an embrace or a kiss, bao bei,” Inara whispered, a tear sliding down her cheek as she continued to clean.
And for gods sakes if you're going to rate the story, leave a review and tell me what you liked or didn't like. We get the e-mail alerts that ya left a rating anyway :)
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