BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - GENERAL

TAMSIBLING

Forward Motion - Part 4
Monday, April 17, 2006

River's slide into dementia is fully revealed, while the rest of the crew tries to determine how to handle it. Plus, Inara comes back on board. Mal/Inara, Simon/Kaylee


CATEGORY: FICTION    TIMES READ: 2484    RATING: 9    SERIES: FIREFLY

River was on the bridge again, it being the only place where she could get any semblance of peace. It was the farthest point on board from her brother’s room and the engine room, which were too places that nearly oozed with sexual overtones now that he was with Kaylee. She was happy for him, but that was just, well, gross.

Jayne spent most of his time in the cargo bay, lifting weights when they weren’t on a job. Not that his thoughts really bothered her; he had so few. And Zoe, well, she had always been quiet, more so now that Wash was gone. Her presence had only been overwhelming to River once, in the first few seconds after Wash’s life had been ended. The seconds of pain that followed had nearly drowned River in despair until abruptly they had vanished. If River ever got the nerve to ask her, she would question Zoe about how she had managed to build such strong mental barriers. River suspected she could learn some good lessons from the woman.

Faintly, River could sense Mal and Inara’s presences a few hundred yards from the ship. But that she didn’t mind so much – it was about time. And at such a distance, it was easier to block out. So, she was again quiet, but she was not alone.

She had felt the small tugs to the edges of her brain over the past few days. Had sensed the urgent need by someone or something to enter into that private place. Whatever it was, it did not come with good intentions and River had been fighting it valiantly. She had left her own protective walls up for longer and longer periods of time, almost fainting again, but somehow managing to make it through. She had worked to gain back some of the sanity the Persephone debacle had taken out of her and she would not lose it, not again.

But she suspected she didn’t have much of a choice. The presence that was trying to invade her senses was blue and that meant it was strong, unrelenting and unwilling to lose. She was quite simply locked in a battle of wills, and she knew with a certainty that only omniscience could bring it would be a battle she wouldn’t win.

***

When Mal and Inara returned to the ship everyone, including Jayne, knew something was different. However, everyone, again including Jayne, decided now was not the time to mention it. They had gathered around the dining table, every member of the crew wearing differing expressions of worry. Mal let his eyes circle the table once, until they came to rest on Inara.

She smiled back at him and took his hand gently. He gave her fingers a light squeeze and then turned his attention back to the group. Time for business.

“We need a job, sir.” Zoe spoke first, always the one to cut right to the chase.

“Yes, Zoe, I believe that’s true. You got any ideas?” Mal met her gaze and he saw her working through their options, as she had been ever since they’d blown out of Persephone. He already knew her conclusion.

“No, sir, I don’t.”

“Well, that makes two of us,” he responded grimly, finally taking a seat. “If anybody’s got any ideas, now’s the time.”

“What about that job with Badger,” Jayne asked. “We did take his money.”

“I ain’t going anywhere near Persephone, not now,” Mal warned him, fixing the mercenary with a glare. “Besides, I’m not convinced our good buddy Badger didn’t know what was happenin’.”

“Told you.” River’s sing-song voice disrupted the quiet. All eyes turned to her as she held Mal’s gaze steadily. “I told you it wasn’t safe.”

“Gorramit, Mal, moonbrain here told you we’d get pinched and ya went anyways,” Jayne’s anger was rising. He didn’t put much faith in River in general, however, even he couldn’t deny the girl was a mighty strong reader and that deserved some respect.

“I seem to remember you telling me something about needing coin,” Mal countered, staring the other man down. “We did manage to get some, didn’t we?”

“Captain, I think you might want to take my sister’s musings a bit more seriously.” Simon’s cultured voice cut through the tension. “Especially since she saved your life – again.”

“Doc, I do take your sister seriously, but when my ship needs fuel and my crew needs food, I tend to go where the job is.” Mal knew his anger wasn’t helping the situation, but he didn’t like being questioned, not on his own boat.

“Isn’t the point of this discussion to get work,” Kaylee piped up, her voice cheery. “I think we should be focusing on that right about now. Right, cap’n?”

“Thank you, lil’ Kaylee,” Mal acknowledged, getting one of the girl’s trademark smiles in return. The expression brought a grin to his own face despite his mood. “Now, we still need –“

“Old friends.” River’s tiny voice interrupted him. Glancing to her, Mal was just about to ask what exactly she meant, when River rose from her seat and headed towards the bridge.

“River, where you going?”

“To answer the call.”

Puzzled, Mal rose and asked, “What—"

He was interrupted by the beep of the ship’s console announcing an incoming wave. At the noise, River turned back and fixed him with one of her trademark ‘I-told-you-so’ grins and Mal just had to smile his own self. Sometimes it was a mite handy having a reader on board.

***

“Well, I’ll be, Harris, is that you?” Mal greeted his old, old friend with a warm and genuine smile. It had been quite a while since the two men had laid eyes on each other, but they had parted ways on friendly enough terms and Mal was in no position right now to blow off a friendly face.

“Malcolm Reynolds, as I live and barely breathe,” the other man answered, his voice gravelly with age and cigars. “Never thought I’d be able to track you down.”

“Well, that is a matter of some concern on this end,” Mal confided, leaning closer to the screen to give the impression of confidence. “How did you manage to find me?”

“I still got a few less than respectable contacts keeping an eye out,” Harris said with a wink, smoothing his unruly mustache over his mouth. “Plus, I need a job done and from your rep, I’d say you all are the only ones to do it.”

Mal’s ears perked up at this. A job from one of his oldest friends would not only bring some money their way, but hopefully relative assurances to stay clear of Alliance troubles. “We might be interested, if the money’s right.”

“Oh, don’t you worry none, Mal,” Harris scolded him, wagging a finger at the screen. “I know how to take care of mine. Where you at? Think you can swing buy for a bit?”

Mal glanced to his side and raised his eyebrows to River. She shrugged noncommittally and Mal took that as a good sign. If she was hesitant to go, she wouldn’t keep it a secret. “Yeah, we can make it out that way. Probably reach you in about three days. You’re still on Pisces, ain’t ya?”

Nodding, Harris answered, “Sounds good, Mal. It’ll be good to see ya.”

“You too, friend,” Mal told him, meaning it. Just seeing his jovial friend’s face had brought a lightness to his heart he’d been missing. “See ya in the world.”

With a nod of dismissal, Harris winked out his screen. Mal leaned back in his chair and looked again to River. “What do you say, Albatross? Feel like flying this big tin can?”

She took her usual place in the co-pilot’s seat and started the pre-flight sequence. Mal sat with her in a companionable silence, smiling as he remembered some of the stupider things he and Harris had done together. It was a wonder one or the both of them weren’t dead.

For her part, River methodically pulled the ship off the ground and pointed her towards the black. She didn’t like the sudden reappearance of one of captain’s old friends, but at this distance, she had nothing solid to place her fears on. So, she would fly them out there and hope the whole way that if danger was on the horizon, she would be well enough to fight it.

***

“Inara, you gotta tell me what happened?”

Kaylee’s bright eyes studied her intensely and Inara could not help but smile. Sitting in Kaylee’s bunk, Inara felt like a school girl, all giddy with the excitement and prospect of a new boyfriend. Kaylee’s cheerfulness only added to the mood.

“Mei mei, I can’t kiss and tell,” she answered demurely, her smile growing even wider.

“So there was kissin’,” Kaylee asked hungrily, leaning forward to grip Inara’s knee. “Oh come on, ‘Nara, you can’t do this to me! I’ve been waiting years for you and the captain to finally, you know, be together.” Her excited expression turned to one of mock hurt and Inara placed her hand over Kaylee’s.

“What do you want me to tell you,” Inara asked her, dropping any pretense that she would keep the events of the previous night to herself – well, maybe some of them.

Her eyes again lighting up, Kaylee lowered her voice and asked, “Well, was he any good?”

***

River was tired, too tired to be flying. But she was still at the controls, although the auto-pilot had long ago kicked in. It was the middle of the night again and the crew was asleep. She was grateful, it gave her more time to concentrate on the blue-hands that pulled at the edges of her brain pan, trying to pry it open. She sat still in the co-pilot’s chair, a tiny veil of sweat running along her forehead and arms. She was fighting it, hard, and it wasn’t easy.

“River, honey? You all right?”

With a start, River turned to see Zoe standing over her, a concerned look on the tall woman’s face. River smiled weakly and said, “Hi Zoe. I thought you were asleep.”

“Nah, couldn’t sleep,” she told her, sitting across the way. Once she was settled, she again turned a critical eye on the girl. “You sure you’re all right? You don’t look well.”

“I’m just tired,” River explained. She went to reach for a control, anything to take her mind off the battle she’d been fighting, but when she reached out, her hand shook so violently she had to pull back to her side.

Zoe had noticed. “I think I better go get Simon,” she said carefully, rising to head off the bridge.

“No.” River was blocking her way in an instant, a fierceness in her eyes that Zoe had not seen for months. “No, I’m fine, just tired. In fact, I’m gonna head to bed right now.”

Zoe watched the small girl turn and descend the stairs gingerly, walking down the hall with one hand against the wall to steady herself. She wasn’t fine, that was plain as day. But Zoe was in no position to lecture the girl about getting the help she needed. Zoe knew about stubborn and she couldn’t begrudge River her own pigheadedness.

Sighing heavily, Zoe sat in the pilot’s seat and gazed over the tiny dinosaurs no one had moved from the console. Smiling slightly at them, she whispered, “This is a good and fertile land. And we will call it – this land.”

***

As soon as River was out of Zoe’s sight, she quickened her pace. Reaching her room, she slid open the door and stepped inside, leaning heavily against the wall. Tears she hadn’t known were forming fell slowly down her cheeks as she tried harder and harder to push the images away. She didn’t want to be that girl again – the crazy girl who didn’t make sense. She didn’t want to keep living with the fear of what she could do, of the things she could see. She wanted to keep pushing it all away so that she could hold onto this somewhat normal existence she had eked out for herself.

But as she crawled towards her bed, and felt her body sag into the mattress, River knew it was useless to fight it. She was exhausted and the tiredness was making her incapable of keeping the thoughts away, making it impossible for her to keep out the blue-handed men who wanted to destroy her so badly. She had fought for a few months, a long, hard battle, but she was losing the war.

As she slipped into a fitful sleep, she knew that when she awoke there would be a lot of confusion and sadness, and not all of it would be hers.

***

Simon had just drifted off to sleep, he and Kaylee having finally managed to wear each other out, yet again. It was a peaceful and welcome sleep that Simon was only too happy to fall into, especially when holding the warm girl at his side.

“Simon! Simon!”

It made the scream that pulled him back into reality even more jarring. He was awake and alert in an instant. Kaylee awoke as well, the noise jolting her into a state of concern. “Simon,” she questioned shakily, as she watched him fumble around the room to pull on a pair of pajama pants and a sweater.

“It’s okay, bao bei,” he whispered, brushing a quick kiss against her forehead. “It’s just River. Go back to sleep. I’ll check on her.”

Padding across the hall to his sister’s room, Simon pushed open her door and saw a sight he had hoped was long behind them. River was tangled in her covers, writhing on her bed. She violently tossed and turned, trying to fight unseen demons in her sleep. She hadn’t had a nightmare this bad since before Miranda and the sight brought a lump of fear to Simon’s throat.

Approaching her cautiously, Simon reached out both hands and took her by the shoulders, gently trying to wake her. “River,” he said, having to raise his voice to be heard over her blood-curdling screams. “River, wake up. Mei mei, it’s just a dream.”

River’s eyes snapped open and without the slightest hint of recognition, she began beating at Simon’s chest, her hands curled into fists. He held her firm, startled by the pain her punches caused, but unwilling to let her go for even a second. Pulling her up to him, Simon brought his arms around her back and held her to his chest. She struggled against him for a few more moments and then finally sank into him, sobbing huge tears that made her shudder.

Completely at a loss for what could have caused such an outburst, especially after so many months of calm, Simon held her fiercely, determined to understand.

“I’m sorry, Simon,” she managed to get out between sobs. She had wrapped her own arms around him and held on tight. “I’m so sorry. I tried, I really did.”

“Shh, mei mei, it’s all right,” Simon told her, willing his voice not to break. He heard the pain and despair in her voice and it made his own heart hurt. “You’re okay. I’m here.”

She cried some more and finally, when she pulled back to look at him, the misery etched into her features had aged her. She looked well beyond her eighteen years and Simon’s sadness deepened. “Mei mei, tell me what’s wrong.”

“I tried, Simon, I swear I did,” she told him breathlessly, her eyes pleading with him to believe her.

“Tried what,” he asked, still confused as to what she could possibly be sorry for.

“I tried to be good, I tried to be normal, but I couldn’t do it.” She started crying again, but quickly wiped at the tears, becoming more and more angry at her own weakness. “I thought I’d be okay. I thought I could be River again. Not crazy. But I can’t.”

Simon’s heart shattered as he realized what she was saying. These past few months hadn’t been a sign of her recovery, just a further sign of River’s intense intelligence. She had figured out ways to mask her own psychosis and so she had tried, mentally damaging herself and physically exhausting her body in order to give him, to give the crew what she thought they wanted; a normal, teenage girl.

Simon’s sadness was quickly replaced with a deep shame; shame that he could have let River believe for one moment that she needed to be someone else in order for him to accept her. Reading his thoughts, River turned his face to meet her gaze and whispered, “It’s not your fault. I wanted to be your sister again. I wanted to do it. I failed.”

“No, River,” Simon said, choking on his own sobs. “No, you didn’t, mei mei.” He pulled her to him again, this time crying on her shoulder.

From the doorway, Kaylee watched them both, her own eyes filling with tears. River caught the young girl’s eyes from over her brother’s shoulder and nodded slightly, inviting her into the room. Kaylee approached gingerly and extended a hand to meet the one River had reached out in her direction. Simon turned and quickly tried to wipe the tears from his face as he realized Kaylee was there.

“I’m sorry, Kaylee,” River told her, her expression completely sincere. “I’m sorry I had to take him away.”

Kaylee smiled at the girl through her tears. Leaning down, she hugged River fiercely and whispered, “How ‘bout we share him?”

River smiled, her first true smile in months and nodded. “Sounds like a plan.”

***

Three hours later River was again sleeping this time with the help of a smoother. She had fought Simon on giving it to her, but after much coaxing and a few thinly veiled threats, Simon had won. She needed to rest, that much was obvious and if a sedative was the only way for that to happen, than so be it.

Simon and Kaylee had stayed with her until she had drifted off, listening while she explained what had been happening since Miranda. Simon’s anger at himself and Kaylee’s shame at being a distraction had colored their take on the situation, but River had scolded them both for those thoughts. What she wanted, more than anything in the ‘verse was for her brother to be happy, and he was happy with Kaylee. That was something she had been sure to tell them, numerous times, before sleep claimed her.

Kaylee and Simon sat across the room from her bed, leaning against the wall. He had draped an arm around Kaylee’s shoulders pulling her closer and she snuggled into his side. Kissing her lightly on the top of the head, Simon whispered, “You should go back to bed. I’m going to stay here the rest of the night. Make sure she’s okay.”

Shaking her head, Kaylee pulled a blanket down from the shelf at her side and turned her big brown eyes on him; eyes he could never deny. “Uh-huh. If you’re staying then so am I.” Placing the blanket over both of them and again getting comfortable, Kaylee said, “She’ll be all right you know.”

Simon again placed a kiss into Kaylee’s hair as he stared at his sister’s sleeping form. Sleeping now, she seemed so peaceful. Simon wished he could be certain it was a permanent state. He wished so many things for River … “I know.”

***

“See? Just a few more days and she’ll be ours.”

“You seem so sure of that,” the skeptical agent countered his partner, studying the brain wave scans they had managed to pull on River Tam. The blue-handed men had many talents, the least of which was brain manipulation. By invading her mind and manipulating her defenses they had been able to draw a clear cut picture of what exactly was happening to the girl. And the results were promising.

“And you aren’t,” the other agent asked, turning to regard his partner coolly.

“We’ve been sure we’ve had her before and we’ve been wrong before, too,” he answered. “I’m not assuming anything until we have her in our possession and headed back to the Academy.”

***

Inara and Mal hadn’t really discussed how things would be once they got back on board. She knew she couldn’t resume residence in the shuttle, the place was a mess having become a dumping ground for any extra food stores or spare parts. Kaylee had graciously offered her own bunk as she rarely used it anymore, so when the rest of the crew said goodnight, Inara had kissed Mal lightly and descended down the ladder into Kaylee’s cheery room.

A few hours later, she was up, unable to sleep as her mind turned over all the unspoken thoughts she and Mal had been avoiding. Plus, she was back on board Serenity; she loved the ship and she had missed her while she’d been gone, even if it had only been for a little over a month.

She found herself wandering and soon was in the cargo bay, sitting above the cavernous room, her legs dangling over the edge of the catwalk. The ship’s lights were dimmed for nighttime and the bay had a faint yellow glow. It was soothing and quiet and it gave Inara plenty of time to think about the infuriating and handsome man sleeping blissfully in his own bunk.

Ai ya, if she just didn’t want to wring his neck sometimes. She smiled slightly at the thought, realizing that even if she had the perfect opportunity to inflict a little physical pain on Mal, she’d never take it. The fact that he could frustrate her so is what made him more appealing. Of course that realization only frustrated her more and Inara had to laugh at herself. My God, girl, she thought, if you aren’t the most conflicted person to ever cross the ‘verse.

“Penny for your thoughts.”

The voice was so unexpected Inara jumped and let out a small scream. Glancing quickly over her shoulder, she blushed a deep crimson as she saw Mal standing over her. “Mal, you scared me.”

“Sorry,” he said sheepishly, carefully sitting beside her. “I didn’t mean to. I came by Kaylee’s bunk and you weren’t there, so I thought I’d be sure you were all right.”

Inara smiled at him, but didn’t meet his gaze. Was she all right? It was a question she had been trying to answer for the better part of the night and she still had no idea. “How about you,” she asked instead, turning the tables on him. “How are you doing?”

Mal smiled tightly and rubbed a hand through his hair. “Fair, I guess,” he told her truthfully. “Honestly, ‘Nara, nothing over the past few months has made any kind of sense.” He stopped for a moment and seemed to reconsider his words. Glancing over to her, he placed his hand over hers and said, “Well, except for this.”

Inara again blushed and she cursed silently that he had that kind of power over her. She had blushed before, plenty of times, for clients, but it was always a controlled response, something she had spent years learning how to turn on and off at the training house. Now, with Mal, it was an involuntary gesture of her own discomfort and she didn’t like being that transparent.

“You know, ‘Nara,” Mal said quietly, his eyes focused on their intertwined hands. “If things are gonna be different, that river’s gonna have to flow both ways.”

She caught his meaning and the slight hint of hurt in his voice. He was right, and it wasn’t fair for her to expect him to be open with her, while she continued to shut him out.

Clearing her throat, she answered, “Mal, you remember last night when you said I had to be patient with you?” He nodded once and she continued. “Well, I’m going to have to ask you for the same favor.” He raised his eyes finally to look at her, and she hated seeing the pain reflected there. “I want things to be different, I do, it’s just that …” She trailed off, uncertain of how to explain it.

“It’s complicated,” Mal said, his voice soft, as he brought his face closer to hers.

She tried not to focus on his lips, tried not to think of his mouth on hers as she said, “Yes, it is. And I’m just trying to figure out how to –“ In an instant they were kissing again and all of Inara’s reservations immediately flew away as Mal pulled her to him. She kissed him back fiercely, realizing that this was the most alive she had ever felt.

Pulling away, she whispered, “It is complicated, you know?”

“Oh, yeah, I know,” he told her, his lips trailing down her neck to nibble at the flesh right above her collarbone. Moaning softly, she ran her hands through his hair and used the leverage to pull him back to look at her. “I’m serious.”

“So am I,” he told her slyly, again kissing her, his lips pressing against hers until she relented and their tongues finally met.

“Mal,” she panted, unable to hold onto her decorum for much longer.

“Yeah.”

“Let’s get out of here.” Moving faster than she had thought possible, they made it back to his bunk before succumbing to their emotions for the second night in a row.

***

Kaylee awoke the next morning to an empty bunk. Blinking to clear the sleep from her eyes, she glanced around her surroundings and grew more confused. Somehow, she had ended back up in Simon’s bed and without Simon. Stretching and stifling a yawn, she opened the door to his room and looked across the hall, trying to determine if they were still in River’s room. Seeing it empty, she made her way around the corner to their next logical location, the infirmary.

She was right. Looking through the room’s window, Kaylee saw River, lying on the diagnostic table, either still under the effects of the sedative or being very patient. Knowing the girl, she guessed the former. She also saw Simon, his brow furrowed, his eyes focused grimly on the data chart in his hand as he tried to analyze the information that came across.

She stood in the doorway for a few moments and when he didn’t realize she was there, said simply, “Mornin’.”

Startled, Simon glanced up and gave her a tight smile. “Hi, Kaylee, did you sleep well?”

“Fine,” she told him, entering the room and leaning across from River’s still form against the room’s other cot. “You?”

“Hmm. Fine,” he murmured, not bothering to look back up.

Kaylee’s heart sank as she watched him. She had known last night that things would change. She had seen the look in his eyes as he had comforted and watched his sister. It was a look Kaylee remembered well from the Tams’ first few months on board. It was the look that had told everyone the only thing that mattered to Simon was River.

Biting her lip to hold in fresh tears, Kaylee asked, “Is she all right?”

“I don’t know,” Simon answered distractedly, studying his readouts and turning to grab some medicine from the nearby cabinet. When he turned back to River, he was surprised to find Kaylee in his path, standing resolutely between him and his sister. “Kaylee, what—"

“Simon, I love you,” she told him firmly, her eyes set in an expression he recognized as fierce determination.

Taken back slightly at the profession, Simon couldn’t believe she had just said that to him, now, of all times. “Kaylee, I … what?”

The hurt look that entered her eyes tore Simon apart and he inwardly kicked himself for being so daft. “That’s not what I meant,” Simon backpedaled quickly, wondering if there was any way for him to save himself. “I’m sorry, I just – I didn’t expect you to … now … and I just –"

“Never mind, Simon,” Kaylee said sullenly, heading back to the infirmary’s doors. Turning before she left, she said quietly, “I just wanted you to know because I know this isn’t easy for you. Seeing River like this. And I wanted you to know,” she trailed off and Simon wasn’t sure if she’d finish the thought. Shrugging lightly, she said, “I’m here.”

Simon watched her walk away, knowing full well he should go after her, but also knowing that River should be his priority. He had been ignoring her needs long enough, and now, look what had happened. She was dangerously close to exhausting herself into a state of sickness and that was something Simon could not sit by and let happen. Sighing heavily, he set back to work, hoping that Kaylee would understand.

COMMENTS

Monday, April 17, 2006 11:33 AM

LEIASKY


Well, was he any good?! AHHHH! That was a mean and evil place to end it! I was looking forward to some girl talk about their men! whine

And Kaylee telling Simon she loved him....oh, he should have gone after her! River was asleep. Stupid boob! One day he'll learn a few words, a hug or a kiss would go a long way to reassuring the girl.

So now Simon is going to be torn between his sister and Kaylee...uh oh.

Monday, April 17, 2006 11:35 AM

WANMEI


Oh, Simon put his foot in his mouth again bigtime.

I love your characterization, the way the story flows, the way you have all of the different character perspectives in there like you do.

Very well done, I'd love to see more soon!

Monday, April 17, 2006 3:37 PM

BLUEEYEDBRIGADIER


This is some might interesting stuff you have here, TamSibling....though I am not sure if having River "revert" is the best plot device. Though it does ramp up the tension a bit;)

My main concern besides River is Simon and Kaylee. Presumably, Kaylee knows Simon loves her from the time they have spent together post-Miranda. Having her (and Simon too) go back to the pre-BDM state of fumbling for a stable pattern of things seems too easy a cliche or plot device. Simon focusing on River is on-target and angsty...but having Kaylee give up (even with the lifeline she threw Simon) seems a bit too much of a step back for the two of them.

BEB

Monday, April 17, 2006 4:16 PM

TAMSIBLING


>>>Having her (and Simon too) go back to the pre-BDM state of fumbling for a stable pattern of things seems too easy a cliche or plot device.

It's not so much that she's given up on Simon, it's just that she knows there's not point in trying to push him to pay attention to her. She told him she loves him to snap him out of his "tunnel vision" so that he would reach out to her. When he doesn't, she knows that she just needs to leave him be for a bit.

The other thing is, Simon is really concerned for River's health - she's passed out once and is close to completely losing it. Simon truly fears she could cause herself to be completely ill and that's why he has to focus his attention on her, and not Kaylee. Which Kaylee does understand - but she doesn't necessarily have to like it!

>>>I am not sure if having River "revert" is the best plot device.

I attest that River was never really cured after Miranda, she was just a little better. Plus, if you had the blue-handed men trying to get into your brain, how sane do you think you'd be?

Sorry, if I haven't explained the blue hands place in this story well enough. My point is that they are doing their best to break down her mental barriers and get at her so that she is vulnerable.

Hopefully the next chapter will shed some more light on both of these concerns BEB. I may post it tonight - maybe although I warn you that I will take some liberty with the Blue-Handed Men's history in order to make the story work. Since we don't really know much about them, I feel there's a little room there to play.

Thanks for reading and commenting!

Monday, April 17, 2006 5:05 PM

ECAMBER


yay! I am really enjoying the development between Inara and Mal (and you've got his style of communication down tight!).

I have to admit, I got a bit tight in the throat and that sad smile as Zoe repeated back those lines of Wash's ("this land"), a very sweet moment for her. Also, while it would be totally out of character for Zoe, I wish there was some way for Simon to know that Zoe has some talents that would be good for River. Might help Zoe, making her interact with people again (outside of her duties on the ship)...

can't wait for the next one...

Thursday, June 8, 2006 7:04 AM

RIVERISMYGODDESS


Very shiny chapter, I am so worried for River though.


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Mal's a bit surprised by the welcome her receives. Gabriel and Regan see the light, but Chen is anxious to keep them all in the dark. Simon/Kaylee, hints of Mal/Inara.

Homesick: Chapter 9
River decides to tell her parents the truth - all of it - and they're not happy. Kaylee is still reeling from her visit with Simon. And another Big Damn Hero joins the mix. Kaylee/Simon, hints of Mal/Inara.

Homesick: Chapter 8
River goes for help and finds Kaylee. Chen grows worried that the Tams will not press charges against their son and takes matters into his own hands. Kaylee manages to see Simon and it doesn't go so well. Kaylee/Simon, hints of Mal/Inara.

Homesick: Chapter 7
Kaylee and Inara get closer to Simon and River, while River makes a call to Mal. Simon despairs in prison and Kaylee pines after him. Simon/Kaylee, hints of Mal/Inara.