Notes: Just something I've had in my head for about forever. One-time fic from Jayne's POV. If I had to date it, it would be pre-Ariel.
Pretty Boys by SLynn
He knew from the moment he'd seen her that she liked pretty boys.
You know the ones. Always done up nice. Clean. Some of them look damn near delicate. Jayne had never understood it himself, why anyone would like them. Didn't make sense.
Maybe that was because he'd never been one and he sometimes had a hard time relating to other people.
Mal and him got along alright. He paid the bills after all. Jayne liked his relationships easy like that. Mal was his boss and he did what he was told. Easy. Helped that as far as bosses go, Mal was fair. He hadn't always worked for people like that before. Mal backed his crew 100 and asked the same in return. Jayne, despite initial misgivings, found that he could do that.
Zoe and him had gotten off to a rough start, but in time he'd learned to respect her. He'd never worked for a woman before, every job he'd ever taken before he'd either been number one or number two. Coming on board Serenity he realized quickly that wasn't the case here. In time he'd begun to trust her and follow her lead as well, not that it had always been easy.
Where to start with Wash. For one, he knew Wash didn't trust him. Maybe it was because Jayne'd never trusted him. Wash was different. Jayne liked people to be straight forward and Wash just wasn't. He smiled and joked even when he didn't mean it, and kept you at arms length until he was sure about you. And he'd never been sure about Jayne. And how Wash ever got Zoe to marry him was a mystery he'd never understand.
Inara he'd never given much thought too. Sure, he liked to annoy her. Ask her inappropriate questions about her job and such, but to him it really was all in fun. Jayne had never seen a real companion before and he could admit that she was impressive. Beautiful, but in an untouchable way. He liked Inara as much as he liked most people but she wasn't the type of woman that he preferred.
Which leaves Kaylee. Kaylee he could relate too and understand. He hadn't wanted to at first, but her personality is infectious. And they were alike. Kaylee was the only one on ship who could understand where he was coming from. They both had been born poor on some dirt clod of a planet and they both had gone out seeking adventure. When she talked about her home he could picture it in ways he couldn't do when the others did the same. Jayne could see it all because he'd lived it. He genuinely liked Kaylee not because she was in charge, or because he had too, or for what she could do for him, but for who she was.
Book, Simon and River were just passengers in Jayne's opinion. Sure, they were nearly crew; they were crew in Mal's eyes, so Jayne was forced to see it that way as well. The preacher was alright but the other two were trouble. He hadn't liked them from day one.
Okay, that wasn't fair. River he thought was alright, despite being crazy. When she wasn't acting crazy she was mostly quiet and Jayne likes that. It was really only Simon he hadn't liked from the start, mostly because he was a pretty boy. Simon was the perfect example of a pretty boy, hell he was even a doctor. Not a real down and dirty, house call making doctor, but a surgeon. Probably the top pretty boy profession of all time. And Kaylee liked pretty boys.
He watched her go all puppy-eyed for him in disbelief. Tried to embarrass her with crude jokes about it, but she was unshakable. Kaylee liked pretty boys and here was one come to stay on the ship. Like he was special ordered or something.
And Jayne just never understood it.
He thought he knew Kaylee. Thought they got on well, but now they didn't talk as much. She had other things to distract her. Other people.
And that stirred something inside of him. Something like jealousy. But no, Jayne didn't get jealous because he didn't get attached. First rule in his line of work, never get attached.
But still, if he did find himself attached to someone, really attached, he knew who he thought it would be. Jayne knew who he'd of chosen, if he'd had his choice.
But those damn pretty boys, they were always in the way.