Title: Objects in Space
Series: Our Mrs. Cobb
Disclaimer: Not mine; Willow and the Firefly crew belongs to Joss Whedon and co
FYI: This is the end of Season 1 of my verse which means this is also the end of Our Mrs. Cobb. But don't fret, there is going to be a sequel but not for at least a month or so.
Mal puts Serenity into sleep-mode, Wash having the night off. He checks his watch and figures Willow's probably still in Inara's shuttle. He walks down the steps and towards the shuttle when he feels somethin'. He's not sure what it is but knows it ain't somethin' that should be there. He goes to turn when someone grabs his shoulder. His fist moves out but is blocked. An arm is wrapped around his throat, cutting off his breath. He tries to elbow the person but is stopped. His world goes black as he's knocked down into his bunk.
Jubal Early drops Captain Reynolds's body into his bunk and then locks all the crew members in. He starts his search for his bounty, heading first to the passenger dorms.
"Do you do that with River?" Inara pants, her hands shaking from the waves of pleasure that just rushed through her body.
"And have Jayne pummel me?" Willow blows out the candles and stands up. "No thanks. That's something I've only ever done with Tara. I could be something for just us cause I doubt Mal is going to be all with the meditating and chanting."
Inara smiles at the thought.
"I thought it would be…." Willow stops, holding up a hand when Inara questions her. 'Jayne?'
'Willow, did you need something?' River asks back. 'Jayne is…..'
'Red, what the gorram hell is goin' on?' Jayne's voice growls into Willow's head. 'River's done freaked out or somethin'. She's gone real quiet.'
'Somebody is one the boat.' Willow says back. 'I don't know who but I do know they're not here to help us in anyway. I think he wants River.'
'I can't get my ruttin' bunk open.' Willow actually winces at the anger in Jayne's voice.
'Just hang tight.' Willow says. 'I'm working on something.'
'It best be somethin' where nobody lays a hand on River.'
'It is. I'll get back to you in a second.' Willow then tries to contact Mal again but gets no response, which means he's unconscious. She knows he's not dead; she would feel that. So, she moves onto the next person in charge.
'Zoe, I so don't want to interrupt you.'
Willow can feel the not exactly dislike but suspiciousness in Zoe's voice. 'Yeah. Somebody is on the boat and I'm pretty sure they've knocked Mal out and locked you all in your rooms.'
'They did.' Zoe's voice is now filled with anger. 'Willow?'
'I'm just going to warn Kaylee, Book, and Simon then I'll work on getting you all out. Just hang tight.' Willow says.
'I will.' Willow cuts off the link with Zoe and tries to open one with Book; he doesn't respond either. Next she moves onto Kaylee. 'Kaylee, are you okay?'
'Aw, sweetie, what did that bastard do to you?' Willow can practically taste Kaylee's fear.
'Me and Simon were kissin' again in the engine room.' Kaylee's voice is filled with tears. 'And this guy came in and kicked Simon across the room. Then he pulled out a gun and made Simon tie me up. Then he forced Simon out to look for River. I'm scared, Willow.'
'I know, sweetie.' Willow replies. 'But he's not going to lay a hand on you, promise. Just hang on.'
"Willow, what's going on?" Inara asks.
"Get into bed." Willow orders. "I'm not here." She waves a hand in front of herself and with that, she's gone.
Inara crawls into her bed just as the door opens.
"You're a smart woman." Early says. "You answer my very simple question and you won't get hurt. Where is River Tam?"
"I'm not sure." Inara answers honestly. "This is a big boat."
"If I found out you're lying to me, you will regret it." Early warns.
"I know you're tired…" She's cut off by Early's hand.
"Don't presume to know me." Early growls.
Inara touches her split lip and watches him walk away. Once her shuttle door is closed and locked, she sees something on the outside that makes her heart stop; Willow.
'I'll be fine, promise.' Willow assures her. 'I'm just going to let everyone out.'
"Willow." Inara's hand touches the window.
Willow touches her fingers against the glass and then runs quietly towards the crew quarters. 'Kaylee, I need you to tell me how to unlock the doors.'
'Right now?' Kaylee asks.
'Right now.' Willow stops in front of the panel thing she always sees the mechanic play with and opens it. She follows Kaylee's very easy directions and after a few seconds, only needs to hit one button to open them. 'Thank you, Kaylee.'
'I will.' Willow assures her. 'Zoe, get ready.'
'I am.' Zoe replies.
'Open the gorram door, Red.'
'One second.' Willow tries Mal again. 'Mal?'
'Willow?' Mal's voice is groggy. 'Some guy..'
'I know.' Willow cuts in. 'He's on the bridge with Simon. I'm going to let you, Jayne, and Zoe out as soon as I get Simon away from him.'
'How the gorram hell do you plan on doin' that?' Mal growls, not liking the idea.
'By giving him what he wants.'
'You better not do nothin' stupid…'
'Just be ready.' Willow interrupts and then blocks him off when he starts to yell. She waves a hand in front of herself again and then runs towards the bridge. "Leave him alone."
"Mei-mei, no." Simon says. "Don't…"
"Good thinking, Miss River." Early says. "It'd be best if you just went with old Early."
"No." Simon yells. "She's not going with you."
"Simon, it's okay." Willow wants to tell him somehow that she's not really River but doesn't know how to without Early noticing. "I'll be okay." She takes the hand Early holds out to her and is completely shocked when Simon tackles the bounty hunter. A gun goes off and Simon grabs his leg with a scream.
"Let's go." Early orders.
Willow mentally pushes the release button for the door locks. 'NOW!' Then placing her foot on Early's butt, she pushes him down the steps and slams the bridge door shut behind her.
"Mei-mei, how could you…"
"Shh, Simon." Willow rips the bottom of his pants off and examines his leg. "Oh, that's gonna leave a mark."
Simon goes to reply when three guns go off at the same time. A few seconds later, the bridge door slides open and his little sister is lifted off her feet and kissed deeply. His mouth drops open in shock. He looks over at Jayne but instead of the murderous look he expects, Jayne just looks a little confused and a little pissed.
"Red, don't know how you're lookin' like my girl, but you best stop before I knock Mal across the room." Jayne warns.
"Jayne, don't be mean."
Simon turns his head and gasps.
"What the?" Wash squeaks. "There's two. How are there two?"
Willow breaks the kiss and waves a hand over her face; she's instantly turned back into herself. "It's a glamour."
"Huh." Mal mutters. "So you can look like anyone?"
"Yeah." Willow pulls away from Mal and drops back down beside Simon. "Sorry bout not warning you but I figured you'd still do what everyone else did when I mind talked to them and talked out loud."
"Simon, did you really think Jayne would have let me turn myself into a bounty hunter?" River asks.
"I had hoped not." Simon says with a wince. "Can we move this conversation to the infirmary; I've been shot."
Mal and Jayne lift the doctor up and carry him towards the infirmary.
"We're going to go untie Kaylee." Willow takes River's arm. "And then let Inara out; we'll be back in a sec."
Mal turns to glare at her. "Don't you go doin' nothin' heroic again, dong ma?"
Willow rolls her eyes. "And here I was going to go save the world from the forces of darkness but now that you've said no, I'll be sure not to."
Mal glares at her back and helps Jayne drop the doctor on the sickbed. "Gorram girl's gonna drive me over the bend."
Willow bounces the ball and then cusses loudly when she doesn't even get one jack up. "I so suck at this."
"Don't even think about it." River warns, seeing the intent in Willow's eyes. "No magic."
"But you're using your genius abilities." Willow protests.
"Hey now." Kaylee bounces the ball and picks up eight jacks. "I ain't a genius or a witch and I just done won."
Willow and River look at her openmouthed. "You suck."
"You okay?" Mal touches Inara's bruised lip.
"Fine." Inara assures him. "More worried about danger girl over there."
Mal follows her gaze and nods his agreement. "Gorram girl ain't gotta lick of sense."
"No, she doesn't." Inara agrees.
"I can hear you, you know." Willow says, bouncing the ball. Once again, she gets none. "This game sucks."
"You just don't know how to play." River bounces the ball and picks up four.
"Yeah." Kaylee agrees, picking up six herself.
"Okay, I give." Willow stands up. "I'm tired anyways; all those heroics really makes a girl sleepy."
"Which why you shouldn't be doin' it." Mal says. "It's gorram lot easier to be a criminal."
"I can be a criminal hero." Willow replies. "Like Robin Hood."
"Rob what?" Jayne lifts River up and kisses her forehead.
"Robin Hood." Willow says. "He robbed from the rich and gave to the poor."
"I like the robbin' part." Jayne says.
"Kaylee, Simon would like company tonight." River grins at the mechanic.
"I think I can handle that." Kaylee smiles back. "He sleepin' in his room tonight?"
"Sir?" Zoe says.
"You and Wash can head on to bed." Mal replies. "After Wash makes sure that bastard didn't do nothin' to my boat."
"Can do." Wash says. "Willow, can I just say you get freakier every day?"
"You can." Willow grins at him. "Night."
"Night." Wash waves to the crew and then follows his wife to the bridge.
"Book's gonna be fine?" Kaylee asks Mal.
"Yeah." Mal replies. "Zoe gave him a sedative to sleep off his headache. He'll be fine in the morning."
"Good." Kaylee says. "I'm gonna go check on Simon; I'll see ya'll in the morning."
"Ladies." Mal holds out an arm to Willow and Inara.
"Night." Willow says to River and Jayne, yawning as Mal leads her and Inara towards Inara's shuttle. "I'm sleepy."
"So am I." Mal agrees. "Nara?"
Both girls lean against the captain's side as they walk towards bed, both of them feeling content and safe by Mal's side.
"C'mon, baby doll." Jayne lifts River up.
River wraps her arms and legs around Jayne. "I'm not tired."
"Aww, I'll get ya tired." Jayne leers, kissing her lips. "I can guarantee that."
River kisses Jayne's lips as he carries her to bed, her fingers funneling through his thick but soft hair. "I knew you would be a good husband."
Jayne stops walking for a second. "Ya think I'm a good husband?"
River cups his face and kisses his nose. "I know you are."
Jayne hefts her closer and buries his face in her neck. "And you're a good wife."