Title: Space scares

Author: Sevangel

Rating: PG (or it was supposed to be until River and Jayne started misbehaving), so between PG-13 and R

Disclaimer: Not mine

FYI: This is my answer to the Halloween challenge. It is in no way connected to 'A new day dawning' (I'm working on the next chapter, but decided to write this first, in case anyone wanted to know). In this fic, River and Jayne are in an established relationship, the crew knows and everything. Since it's a stand-alone, I'm not going to go into detail about how they came to be, just know that they are.

-

"So, what's in the cargo?" Wash asks Mal and Zoe as they walk towards the bridge.

"I've learned not to ask." Mal answers. "Safer that way."

"At least we're heading towards a planet that has a beach." Wash comments. "Think we can get a day off?"

"Think we might." Mal answers.

Wash climbs up the steps leading onto the bridge. Right as he's between the two doors, River's head pops down in front of his.

"Boo." River says, hanging upside down, her legs straddling the width of the small area.

"Ahhhhhh." Wash screams.

"Gorramit, River." Mal says, laughing at Wash's girly scream. "Ya trying to give someone a heart attack."

River releases her legs, flipping over to drop in front of Wash. "Happy Halloween." She smiles at Wash and then skips down the steps out of the bridge.

"Husband, you okay?" Zoe questions, barely holding back a laugh.

"I was….then she…head…..boo." Wash mutters. "Why didn't she scare you guys?"

"We've seen a lot in our lives, Wash." Mal says. "It takes more than a girl to scare us."

"You gonna be okay by yourself, husband?" Zoe questions. "We need to hide the cargo."

"Yeah, I'm just gonna sit here and wait for my heart to stop pounding." Wash says. Zoe kisses her husband's forehead and then follows Mal out of the bridge.

-

"That was hilarious." Mal says. "Did ya see how he jumped?"

"And screamed." Zoe agrees, finally giving in and laughing. They move into the bay and heads toward the cargo. It's only once crate, not very tall but it is long and heavy. It takes both of them to pull it over to the false panel.

"Where the hell is Jayne?" Mal growls.

"River probably found him and they're laughing over her little joke." Zoe answers.

"Or they're in his bunk, in which case, I think we'll leave em be." Mal comments. "Walking in on them is somethin I can only handle once."

"Ain't that the truth." Zoe agrees.

Mal and Zoe move in front of the crate, both squatting down the remove the false panel. Right as they push it out of the way, River pokes her head out and says, "Boo."

They both let out a small squeak, falling backwards onto their rears.

"Made!" Mal yells. "Gorrammit River."

River just moves out of the opening, smiling down at the ex-soldiers. "Happy Halloween." She moves around them and skips out of the room.

"Takes more than a girl to scare ya, huh?" Wash says, laughing at them from the catwalks.

"Shut up Wash." Mal and Zoe say together.

-

Book closes his bible and sets it down on the table by his bed. Moving across the room to his sink, he removes the rubber band, letting his hair free. He turns on the faucet, bending over to wash his face. After rinsing his face a few times, he turns the water off. He straightens up, glances into the mirror and screams.

"Boo." River says, her face reflecting off the mirror in front of him.

"River, that's not very nice." Book scolds, his heart pounding.

"Happy Halloween." River says and then turns and skips out of the room.

-

Simon organizes the infirmary; something he's learned is necessary to do before a job. Chances are someone is going to end up in here. He moves the pain medicine around, checking to see how much is left. They're going to need to find some more soon. Glancing at another empty bottle, he mentally adds River's birth control shot to his list of necessities.

Moving over to the opposite side of the room, he reaches up to open a cabinet, planning on putting away some equipment. He opens the door and then jumps back, letting out a screech.

"Boo." River says, her body squeezed into the small cabinet.

"Dammit, River." Simon growls.

"Happy Halloween." River says, dropping out of the cabinet. She kisses her brother on the cheek and then skips out of the room.

-

Kaylee moves into the engine room, humming a tune under her breath. "How's my girl doin?" Kaylee asks out loud. There is no response, which is a good thing.

She moves around the room cheerfully, patting the engine with a loving hand. "Ya seem to be squeakin a bit." Kaylee moves over to grab a couple of tools and then plops down onto the ground to crawl under the engine. Right when she makes it under it, River's head pops up next to her. Kaylee screams and drops the tools in her hand.

"Boo." River says.

"River, I'm gonna git ya for that." Kaylee threatens. River just reaches down and kisses Kaylee's forehead.

"Happy Halloween." River says, standing up and skipping out of the room.

-

Inara moves gracefully into the mess planning on making some tea. She moves over to the stove and sets some water to boil. Grabbing a cup and placing it on a saucer, she drops the tea bag into the cup and then waits for the water to finish boiling. After a few minutes, the water's done and she turns the stove off, pouring the hot water into the cup.

Moving over to the table, she sets the tea down and then moves to pull out a chair. Right as she goes to sit down, River pops up in front of the chair and says, "Boo."

Inara screeches loudly, falling back a few steps.

"Happy Halloween." River says before moving out from under the table and skipping out of the room.

-

Jayne collapses back onto his bed, panting harshly. River falls forward onto his chest, her bare breast pillowing against his chest.

"Gorram, baby." Jayne pants out. "I don't think I can move."

"Mmmmmm." River moans, reaching down to kiss his chest. With a smirk, she reaches over to bite his nipple. Jayne jumps slightly at the sting and then groans when she licks the mark.

Grabbing her under her arms, Jayne pulls her up for a kiss. They continue to eat at each other's mouth for the next few minutes. Jayne gets ready to flip them over when River moves off his stomach, to crawl on all fours to the foot of the bed.

"Where ya goin?" Jayne growls, drooling a bit at the picture she makes.

"This way." River says, looking over her shoulder at him, slightly shaking her ass in invitation.

"Hell yeah." Jayne growls, moving over to blanket her back with his chest. Reaching between their bodies, he gently opens her folds and then thrust in, making River moan loudly.

"Harder Jayne." River moans out, arching her back, and digging her hands into his bed.

With a smirk, Jayne thrust harder, his eyes crossing at the sensation of being inside his River.

-

Kaylee sets the basket holding the rolls onto the table and then moves to sit down in the chair Simon was holding out for her.

"She get ya guys too?" Kaylee questions.

"She got Wash on the bridge." Mal answers.

"Then she got Mal and Zoe in the bay." Wash grins. "They squealed."

"She was standing behind me, saw her reflection in the mirror." Book says.

"I opened a cabinet and there she was." Simon says.

"Popped up next to me while I was under the engine." Kaylee replies.

"She was under the table." Inara says. "I pulled out a chair when she popped out."

"Whatta ya guys talkin bout?" Jayne says, walking into the mess.

"River." They all answer.

"She scare ya all?" Jayne questions.

"Yes." Mal answers for everyone. "She tell ya?"

"Told me she was gonna do it for Halloween or somethin like that." Jayne answers.

"Why didn't ya say somethin?" Mal growls.

"Thought it be funny." Jayne replies, plopping down into his chair and pulling River onto the chair next to him.

"She scare you to?" Kaylee asks.

"Hell no." Jayne growls. "Ya know I can always tell when she's round, there's not a chance in gorram hell that she can scare me. Ain't that right baby?"

"Mm." River murmers. "Jayne?"

"What, baby?" Jayne says, grabbing his glass and taking a drink.

"I'm pregnant." River deadpans.

Jayne sprays out the water in his mouth, his eyes opening wide. Pushing his chair back, he starts to stand up when his legs give out and he falls heavily back into his chair.

"Ya're what?" Jayne manages to get out.

River just looks at him and says, "Boo."

"Boo." Jayne says. "What the hell is that……why ya little brat."

"Happy Halloween." River says, smiling widely at him.

"Gorram, River." Mal says. "That was the best scare all day."

"Ya're gonna pay for that, baby." Jayne threatens.

"I'm looking forward to it." River replies sweetly.

The table is silent until Jayne turns to River again. "That was just ya playin right?" Jayne questions.

River just raises an eyebrow and smiles at him.

"Mei-mei, you were just joking, right?" Simon questions, scared at the thought of being an uncle.

"Only time will tell." River replies. Reaching out she drops some protein on her plate and then hands the bowl to Jayne.

"We're gonna talk bout this later." Jayne says, talking the bowl from her. She nods at him before stealing a roll off his plate.

"Happy Halloween." River says out loud.

"Happy Halloween." They echo back.

-