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A new Day Dawning

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Summary: Months after Early's visit, things start to change. Will the crew of Serenity be able to handle a grown up River?

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Firefly > Non-BtVS/AtS Stories(Past Donor)sevangelFR1822121,019162445,3717 Nov 056 May 06No

Now ready

Title: Now ready (5th A new day dawning)
FYI: Supposed to be first part of much longer part but decided to seperate and post this before I go to bed


“I think she’s mad at you.” Wash tells Mal, after the girls had left.

“I’m thinkin you might be right.” Mal agrees. Gorramit, he hates when Kaylee’s mad at him. It always makes him feel like he just got done kickin a puppy.

“Sir, grounded?” Zoe questions.

“What, ya think I over reacted?” Mal asks his second in command.

“Maybe a little.” Zoe answers. “I understand how you may be upset with the entire situation, but grounding them. They ain’t children.”

“What the hell was I supposed to do? Put em over my knee and give em a spankin?” Mal asks, glancing at Jayne when he growls. “What?”

“Nothin, almost cut myself.” Jayne lies. The thought of anybody, but him, spankin River makes him feel all violent. Which pisses him off. When did he get to carin bout anybody touchin her. But lately when anybody even innocently touches her, it makes him mad, like he gets when someone touches his weapons. Though if he’s honest with himself, he feels more pissed at the thought of Mal spankin her then he’s ever felt over someone touchin his weapons.

“I’d like to see that.” Wash says.

“What?” Zoe glares at her husband. “Did you just say you want to see captain spanking them girls?”

“Yeah,” Wash answers. “But it didn’t mean it like that. I just mean it would be funny to see Mal try to spank River.”

“Why?” Jayne growls.

“Come on, you saw what she did to those men, and they were all bigger than the captain. She’d kick him across the room before he’d even get a hand raised.” Wash explains, giving Jayne a funny look. Since when did the mercenary get all growly about River? He’d have to ask Zoe, see if she noticed anything.


“Well, Wash, you’ve been right twice in one day, must be a record.” Mal says, agreeing with him. River’d probably knock him out cold fore he’d even have the chance to raise a fist, not that he’d hit her, well not unless he had no other choice. “Speakin of, doc, where’d your sister learn to fight like that?”

“I honestly don’t want to know. She couldn’t before the academy, so I’m thinking she must have learned it there.” Simon answers. “I’m not surprised she’s so adapted to it. She looked remarkable like she was dancing, something she’s always loved to do.”

“She did look like she was dancing, kinda flowed across the floor like a butterfly or something.” Wash agrees.

“Husband, you’re seeming rather impressed by this. Should I be worried?” Zoe asks.

“Hell no Zoe. You know you’re the only warrior woman for me.” Wash answers. “It’s just weird. I mean, Zoe, you look like you could kick ass, no questions asked. You beat the hell out of somebody; well it’s not that unexpected. But River, she’s what, like 90 lbs. Nobody would ever look at her and be afraid.”

“That’s what’s worryin me the most. I can see she can take care of herself, hell we got proof of that. But if she’s off ship, someone gonna take one look at her and think she’s an easy target. What if she fights back and the wrong people see her? Could lead the Alliance straight to her.” Mal says.

“We don’t let it happen.” Jayne grunts.

“How do you suggest we go about that Jayne?” Mal asks, surprised that the merc really cares. Wasn’t it a little under a year ago that he turned them over to the alliance?

“Don’t let her off ship without you or me present.” Jayne answers.

“She’s my sister, I think she’d be quite safe with me.” Simon protests.

“Doc, ain’t tryin to be mean or nothing, for once, but ya ain’t someone who’s gonna scare anybody.” Jayne says. “Someone sees her in town with only you, they ain’t gonna be scared out of tryin to take her. Now they see her with me or Mal, they’re gonna think twice before tryin to take her.”

“Jayne’s right.” Mal says. “We can’t risk her havin to defend herself against someone connected to the alliance. She ain’t leavin this boat without me or Jayne, unless I give specific instructions, dong ma?”

The gathered crew nod at him, indicating they understand. “Sir, I startin to think it isn’t the best idea for Kaylee to go out on these backwater planets alone either.” Zoe adds. She’s not insulted that Mal and Jayne didn’t include her. While she may look intimidating, it didn’t stop people from trying to attack her. Didn’t stop people from attacking Mal either, now that she thinks about it. Jayne, on the other hand, most people steered clear of. They’d fight back, sure, but didn’t normally try starting the fight, unless they were drunk. That’s bout the only time you’ll find men willingly start a fight with the large merc. The safest place for River off-ship is with Jayne. And she’s thinking Jayne knows this, and won’t let the girl out of his sight.

“Yeah, I never liked lettin her off alone before, and this whole episode makes me feel even more twitchy bout it.” Mal agrees. “She don’t leave the ship alone either.”

The silence that follows is broken when Jayne loudly grabs the guns scattered across the table. “Jayne what’re ya doin?” Mal questions.

“Gonna go clean my new guns.” Jayne answers.

“Who said they’re yours?”

“You heard her, told me to enjoy my new girls. She gave em to me.” Jayne says.

“Fine, but I get one.” Mal retorts.

“A’right I guess ya can have Wilma.” Jayne grunts out, sliding the smallest gun across the table to Mal.

“Wilma?” Wash questions. “You named them already? Why?”

“They gotta have names.” Jayne answers. “When ya spend as much time with guns as I do, it just feels better to have somethin to call them.”

“You goin to the your bunk?” Mal asks Jayne as he stands up collecting the weapons.

“Naw, thought I’d lift some weights first then clean em. Goin down to the cargo bay.” Jayne says, walking out of the mess hall.

“Sir, what are you planning on doing about Kaylee?” Zoe asks after the mercs gone.

“I don’t ruttin know. Guess I’ll let her cool off for a day or two.” Mal answers. “This is Kaylee we’re talkin bout, how long can she stay mad?”

“Longer than one would think.” Simon says, standing up. “Book, I’m going to give you something to help you sleep. I know you’re feeling better now, but you still have some healing to do. First though, I’m going to go give Kaylee and River their shot.” Simon gathers his tools and quietly leaves.

“If we’re done here, I’m heading back up to finalize our flight plan.” Wash says.

“That’s fine.” Mal says. “You going with him?”

“Yeah, you’ll be up later?” Zoe asks.

“Sure, I’ll take the helm in a couple hours so’s you two can get some shut eye.” Mal answers. “Shepard, why don’t I help you to your room.”

Zoe and Wash leave the mess hall for the bridge. Mal helps the Shepard to his room, the old man, while looks like he’s feeling better, isn’t moving with his normal zest. Inara watches the remaining crew leave then grabs her player, taking the disc out and putting in on the table for Mal to find. She exits the mess hall and heads to her shuttle.

-

“Kaylee, River, I need to give you two your vaccine.” Simon says as he enters the engine room. Kaylee and River both crawl out from under the engine to stand in front of him. He takes River’s arm first and injects her quickly. She doesn’t jump at the needle anymore, she’s used to getting shots. Kaylee, on the other hand, closes her eyes tightly and flinches before Simon had even injected her. He injects it as gently as possible, and then rubs his thumb over where the needle had entered.

Kaylee feels the goose bumps rise over her body when Simon’s thumb starts rubbing the inside of her elbow. She starts to smile up at him but then remembers she’s mad at him and the cap’n. “Why didn’t you defend us?” Kaylee asks, steaming.

“I didn’t…..I don’t….are you mad at me too?” Simon asks, confused.

“Shide,” Kaylee says, “you just sat there and let the cap’n ground us, didn’t even try sayin he was being a hundan.”

“In case you haven’t noticed, whenever I try to correct the captain, he tends to get very upset.” Simon pleads.

“Never stopped ya before.” Kaylee mumbles. She knows she shouldn’t be mad at him, weren’t his fault, but she can’t help it.

“Kaylee, I’m sorry. I should have a least tried to defend you but I was a little shocked at the moment.” Simon smiles uneasily at her. “Seeing that guy grab you and River fighting them, it threw me off.”

“You were worried bout me?” Kaylee asks, smiling at Simon.

“Of course I was.” Simon answers. “I always worry about you….and River.”

“Awwww…that’s so sweet.” Kaylee replies sweetly. “I gotta finish fixin this part then guess I’m going to my room, but maybe we can hang out in a couple days?” She asks hopefully.

“Sure, once you’re done being grounded.” Simon says.

“Shiny.” Kaylee replies.

Simon smiles at the mechanic, and then turns to his sister, “Mei-mei, I think you should go to the infirmary so I can examine you.”

“No, thank you Simon.” River calmly says. “I am fine.”

“Mei-mei.” Simon protests.

“No. I am fine.” River firmly repeats.

“Fine. I trust you are smart enough to know if you need immediate medical attention. If you need me, you know where my room is.” Simon sighs. He kisses his sister on the forehead and lightly pats the small of Kaylee’s back before leaving the engine room.

“Night Simon.” Kaylee and River call out towards the leaving doctor, and then turn back to fix the engine.

-

Jayne had finished his workout bout 30 minutes ago. After a quick shower, he returned to the cargo bay to clean his new weapons. He though about returning to his room but there ain’t ever enough room to spread everything out. He’d normally use the table in the mess hall but didn’t wanna have to worry bout rest of the crew botherin him. The cargo bay was the last place most the crew would venture to this late at night.

He was gettin bothered with how much he’s been worryin after the doc’s little sister. Seein her in that fight did two things to him. The first bein pissin him off. After seein those men hit her, he wanted nothin more than to tell Wash to turn the ship round so he could go back and kill em all. He liked to fight but that had nothin to do with how he was feelin. Weren’t his desire for violence that made him want to go back. It was his desire to protect her, kill anything that hurt her. When did he start carin bout protectin anybody but hisself?

The second was desire. Seein her move and fight like that got him all hot. She moved like nothin he’d ever seen before, like she knew exactly what she was capable of and enjoyed doin it. The only person he knew that fought like that was him. And even he weren’t that good. Sure he could put a man down easier than most, but not with the agility that she used. He’d love to tussle with her. Not fight exactly, just play. But there’s no way he’d get the chance, Mal riddle him with holes if’n he tried. Maybe he could convince Mal he’s just testin her, seein what she’s capable of, if he ever decided to try.

Jayne puts the gun he’s cleaning done slowly when he feels someone move into the bay. He don’t have to look up, he knows it’s her. He can smell it, that slight scent of peaches and girl. And he can feel her enter, his whole body’s on edge, but not in a bad way. It’s somethin he’s enjoyin. Like how he feels fore a good fight, only better. She moves over to stop in front of the crate he’s sittin on.

“Wilma’s gone.” River points out.

“Yeah, Mal wanted her.” Jayne answers not bothered that she knew the names of his guns fore he even told her.

“She’ll be safe with him.” River assures the big man.

“Yeah, I guess so.” Jayne grunts. “Whata ya doin outa ya’re bunk? I thought ya was grounded or somethin.”

“I snuck out.” She says with a smile. “Nobody will know, unless you tell.”

“I ain’t gonna tattle on ya.” Jayne smirks. Course she’d be one to sneak out when she weren’t supposed to. Fate’s way of dickin with him. He can’t resist a rule breaker, seein how’s he’s one himself. “Why ya down here for?”

River doesn’t reply, just pulls an ace bandage out of her dress and sets it down in front of the merc.

“What’s that for?” Jayne questions her.

“Need you to wrap my ribs, they hurt.” She answers.

“Wait a second here. Why don’t ya get your brother to do that, he’s the doc?” Jayne questions, holding the bandage out to her.

“Can’t. He’ll never stop seeing me as a child if he has to keep fixing me.” River explains.

“Can’t ya get Kaylee to do it?”

“She feels guilty enough, that I got hurt protecting her. She will feel worse if she sees the bruises.” River answers. “Zoe and Wash are busy. Inara is sleeping and preacher man’s hair is too scary. I suppose I could ask captain. It wouldn’t bother him to see the bruises on my bare back.” River grabs the bandage from his hand and turns like she’s going to leave the room.

“Gorrammit, get back here. No need to bother Mal, I’ll wrap em.” Jayne growls.

River hands the bandage back with a smile. She pulls the sweater she’s wearin off, reveiling the black, tight tank top she’s wearin under it. Jayne swallows heavily as he watches her roll the tank top up until its tucked under her boobs, her entire torso bare. “Chusheng xai-jiao de xiang huo.” Jayne mutters under his breath. Her back is covered in a huge bruise, bout the size of both his hands. It’s gotta hurt like hell. “Damn, kitten, ya should have told your brother, he coulda gave ya something.”

“Kitten?” River questions, joy flaring in her stomach at the pet name.

“Oh, gorrammit, I didn’t mean to say that out loud.” Jayne grunts. She continues to stare at him until he realizes she’s waitin for an explanation. “Ya just remind me of a kitten. Ya know, one’s been beat up and abused. Look all fragile like but still can scratch and bite the hell outa someone.” He explains. He doesn’t look at her, just pulls her to him and wraps her ribs as carefully as he can. She feels so fragile under his hands. When he finishes, he drops his hands and waits for her to move away.

“I didn’t mean to call ya that, if’n it makes ya uncomfortable….” Jayne whispers, not looking at her.

“I’d like to be your kitten.” River whispers back.

Jayne doesn’t say anything back but likes the thought of her bein his. He’s so lost in thinking bout her, he don’t notice when she drops down to sit on his thigh. “Whoa, whata think you’re doin?” He likes the way she feels, all soft and warm. She don’t weigh nothin, don’t bother him at all havin her on his lap.

“I think your ready now.” River states. Before he can ask what she means, she reaches up and presses her lips firmly to his. He’s completely stunned but doesn’t pull away. Her lips are soft and he loves the feel of her breath mixin with his. After a few seconds, she pulls away. She moves off his lap to stand in front of him, her hands hanging at her sides.

“That it?” Jayne questions, disappointed. He never liked kissin fore but it’s lot better than he’s ever remembered. Hell, if he knew it’d be this good, he’d done it long time ago. But deep down he knows it wouldn’t be the same with anybody else. It’s her.

“Have to wait 7 minutes.” River answers.

“What? Why?” Jayne asks, confused.

“Any narcotic that could be applied and transferred through contact between lips would have to kick in within the next 7 minutes.” River explains. She looks down and plays with the bottom of her tank. “Don’t want you to confuse me with her.” She whispers.

Jayne’s confused for a second then realize what she means. He reaches out and grabs her hand, pulling her back onto his lap. “Hell, kitten, I know you ain’t her. If’n ya’re wantin to knock me out, I’m thinkin ya’d just do it, not play round with me. Sides, ya’re nothin like her. She was a heartless whore, lookin to steal anythin she could from any man. You’re nothin like that.”

“Just didn’t want you to confuse me with her.” River restates. She starts to say something else when Jayne cuts her off by placing his lips against hers. They remain that way for a moment, just enjoying the press of lips. Then Jayne questioningly slips his tongue out to test the seams of her lips. Without hesitation, she opens her mouth to merge her tongue with his. Jayne moves the angle of his head to gain better access to her mouth. River moves her arms to wrap around his neck at the same time Jayne moves his hands up to fist in her hair. Their kiss deepened, until they were both eating at the others mouth, their tongues fighting and teeth clicking. Jayne moves his hand out of her hair to run down her back, forgetting about the bruises. River let out a gasp; one that Jayne knew wasn’t pleasure.

“Sorry kitten, forgot.” Jayne apologizes.

“S’okay.” River murmurs.

“You should probably go to bed, for Kaylee comes lookin for ya.” Jayne says.

“You’re right.” River agrees. She moves off his lap to stand in front of him, waiting.

“What?” Jayne asks roughly.

“Need goodnight kiss.” She answers. Jayne sighs, and then pulls her closer to gently kiss her lips.

“There ya go kitten, now git.” Jayne smiles at her.

“Night Jayne.” River calls out as she leaves the room.

Jayne watches her leave, his body pulled tight. Damn, she got to him fast. She got him harder with a kiss than he normally get for sex. He can just imagine how hard she’s gonna get him when they have sex…….if, he means if they have sex. He gives up on cleanin his guns and heads down to his bunk to take care of his problem.

-

“She still ain’t talking to you?” Wash asks Mal. Kaylee had just walked into the mess hall and seen Mal. She then turned right around and left the room, not saying a word.

“Guess not.” It’s been 3 days since Menthos and him ‘grounding’ Kaylee and River. He told them they could have free rein of the ship again yesterday, well actually he told River since Kaylee wouldn’t look at him. River had just grinned that creepy grin of hers, then grabbed Kaylee’s hand and pulled her out of their bunk. River doesn’t seem mad at him, still continues to talk to him. Kaylee, on the other hand, would only stay in the same room with him during meal times. He can’t stand it.

“Kaylee still mad at you sir?” Zoe questions, moving to sit next to her husband.

“Yep. She walked out soon as she seen him.” Wash grins at his wife.

“How far are we from the pickup?” Mal questions. They had a job lined up on a moon called Semuh. They were to pick up some crates of protein bars and deliver them to Badger. Mal didn’t want to deal with that weasel again, but they needed the money.

“Bout 25 minutes or so.” Zoe answers for her husband. “Sir, Wash would like to join us on the pickup.”

“What? Why?” Mal asks.

“Just wanna get off ship for a while.” Wash answers.

“Fine. Preacher’s feelin better so he can watch the ship, I guess. You know I’m only gonna let ya go cause we’re parking on an empty section of the moon. There shouldn’t be anybody round but us and the Wright brothers.”

“Yep. Should be a quiet job.” Wash agrees.

“Where’s Jayne?” Mal questions Zoe. “Haven’t seen him in a while, been awfully quiet. Think something’s goin on with him?”

“Haven’t heard anything.” Zoe answers. She’s not really lying, neither Jayne nor River have said anything to her. She may know something’s up with the big man, but she can honestly tell him she hasn’t heard anything. “He’s probably in his bunk getting ready for the job.”

-

Jayne and River were in the empty shuttle. River was sitting in Jayne’s lap, her hands in his hair. He had his hands wrapped around her waist and was playing gently with the small of her bare back. Their lips were fused together, their tongues fighting for dominance.

“Kitten, I gotta go.” Jayne pants, removing his lips from hers. “We should be landin soon and I ain’t got weaponed up yet.”

“Captain’s looking for you.” River states, also panting. She loves kissing Jayne. It makes her body vibrate and completely clears her mind. This is the second time they’ve been able to sneak away like this. The first time being when Kaylee was busy in the engine room, Inara in her shuttle, Simon and Book playing chess, while Mal, Zoe, and Wash were dealin with a wave from Badger. She grabbed him while he was walking past the infirmary and pulled him inside. They kissed for a solid ten minutes when she jumped off his lap and told him Simon was coming. They both ran in opposite directions, returning to their bunks. River had grabbed him again this time, pulling him into the shuttle and shoving him into the pilot’s chair before climbing onto his lap.

“Gorramit, why didn’t ya say something? He sees us like this, I’m gettin shoved out the airlock.” Jayne complains.

“Still had a few minutes.” She answers, reaching up to kiss him again. He allows the kiss, and then gets swept away. After a minute, he gently puts her off his lap, kisses her forehead and leaves the shuttle adjusting his pants on his way.

“Be careful.” River calls after him. He just grunts back at her, moving towards his bunk. Gorrammit, he’s lucky nobody saw him leavin the shuttle. If’n they had, they’d probably venture in there to see what he’d been up to. They’d take one look at her and he’d be shoved out the airlock. He moves into his bunk and gathers a couple of his girls, Daisy and Sara. Grabbin some extra ammo, he debates wacking off, but realizes he ain’t got the time. He straps the belt to hold his guns low on his hips, so’s nobody could notice his aroused state. He makes it to the cargo bay a few minutes after they landed.

“Where ya been Jayne?” Mal questions the merc. “Why ya lookin flushed for?”

“In my bunk, doin some pushups. Gotta keep in shape.” Jayne lies.

“Ya made it just in time, been in any later we mighta left ya.” Mal says.

Jayne moves over to the mule to notice Wash sittin in the front seat. “What’r ya doin?”

“Driving.” Wash answers.

“He goin with us?” Jayne questions Mal. At Mal’s nod he adds, “who’s gonna watch the ship?”

“Shepard. It’ll be fine. They’re ain’t a soul round but us and those we’re meetin with.” Mal answers, sending the merc a funny look. Since when has he cared who’s watchin the ship?

Jayne climbs into the back seat, makin room for Mal to sit beside him. Mal moves to get into the mule when Simon and Kaylee move into the cargo bay. Mal moves from the mule to stand by the newcomers.

“Where’s River?” Mal questions. It’s odd to not see River with Kaylee. Most of the time the two are always together.

“Said her head hurt, went to lay down.” Kaylee answers, talking directly to the captain for the first time in 3 days.

“Kaylee, I need to talk to you.” Mal says, indicating she should follow him out of the cargo bay. The both walk silently, turning to face each other once they make it into the hallway. “I’m sorry.” Mal says quickly.

“What?” Kaylee asks, somewhat shocked.

“Ya heard me. I overreacted. I just hate the thought of what coulda happened to ya two out there.” Mal explains. “I ain’t your pa, got no right to ground ya.”

“Aww..cap’n you’re the closest think I got to a dad out here. Why’d ya think I was ignoring ya. What’s I’ve always done when my dad used to punish me back home.” Kaylee says.

“So’s ya were torturing me like that cause I remind ya of your dad?” Mal asks, disbelieving.

“Yep.” Kaylee says. Then she starts laughing really hard. “Ya shoulda seen your face every time ignored you. It’s why I had to leave the room, couldn’t keep from laughing.”

“Kaylee, that’s just mean.” Mal growls.

“You’re such an easy mark cap’n.” Kaylee says. She reaches up and kisses him on the cheek and cheerfully trots back to the cargo bay.

Mal follows at a slower pace, shaking his head at Kaylee’s actions. Gorram girl had him all feelin guilty when she’d just been playin with him. He makes it back to the bay at the same time as Book. “Ship’s yours preacher. We should be back in a hour or so.” At Book’s nod, Mal climbs into the back seat of the mule, next to Jayne. With a wave from the staying crew, the four head off to make the exchange.

-

Chinese translations
Shide: yes/right
Hundan: asshole/bastard
Chusheng xai-jiao de xiang huo: animal fucking bastard
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