Title: Xie Xie
Fandom: Firefly
Pairing: River/Jayne implied
Rating: All Audiences (G)
Author's Notes: I wrote another drabble, I guess it can be considered a sequel of sorts to Bao Bei. I typed it up the other night for mik109 because I love her and I hadn't sent her much of anything from Bad Blood 5 (which is now finished but that's not the point, though 6 is moving along nicely if you wanted to know) I wasn't actually going to post this but she said I should so here it is for your enjoyment 

Jayne was going to die, no two ways about it, and it weren't nothin' like he pictured it would be. Weren't no guns, fast moving vehicles, or explosions. Hell, weren't even any bad guys. That didn't change it though. He was still doomed and it ruttin' sucked.

He really had it comin' though. He'd gotten sloppy, which was nothin' like him, an' so he couldn't blame a soul 'ceptin' his own. And, as he stared down the hard blue eyes in front of him, Jayne realized he'd been goin' about things all wrong.

"I ain't ever been burdened with an overabundance of smarts, but I know when someone's tryin' to pull the wool over my eyes. Now, I've been noticin' a sudden shift in behavior lately." Mal glared at each member of his crew long and hard. "I realize things've been different as of late, but that don't mean I want sneakin' around on my boat."

"I've been urged by certain individuals to let this one slide, an' I will but only if you come out an' say it. No more of this hidin' and sneakin' about go se. So it's up to you, come clean now or when ya get caught red handed, and you will get caught, you'll face the consequences then." Mal moved his gaze over the whole of his crew once again. "So…what'll it be?"

Jayne was frozen in place like a deer in the headlights or somethin' and he seriously had no idea what to do. Mal'd come right out in the open an' said it. Somehow the captain knew that Jayne's intentions towards lil' River had become less-n-less hateful and more-n-more lustful.

Well, hell, he was just stuck now weren't he? Not like he was just gonna blurt out 'Hey I got me some less then savory thoughts 'bout the Doc's mei mei lately' an' Mal'd made it clear if'n he didn't just blurt it out there would be some kind of hell or another to pay.

What had happened? He'd been doin' good keeping his feelin's on the down low an' quiet. Weren't like he was actin' all head over heels, which was a sayin' that never made too much sense to him what with a body always bein' head over heels an all. But that was not the point.

Point was someone'd known an' he needed to figure out who. It's not like he was just goin' 'round and tellin' anyone'd that listen, barely admitted it to himself even.

Yeah, River had been real little, 'ceptin' brain capacity that is, when she'd come onboard, and that'd been for a good long while. But she'd filled out plenty since then, not that she was fat or nothin', just she weren't so little now. He didn't need any convincin' that the cute little crazy girl from before had changed into one real fine piece of…No! He was not going to think on that, not here and not now.

Was thoughts like that that'd gotten him where he was in the first place anyhow he suspected. Still it didn't make any sense to him, how the hell had anyone known. He was being subtle. He'd been damned subtle! That meant only one of two things had happened. He'd either gotten so drunk on their last stop he'd blabbed it to someone, or…or…damn he couldn't think of an or.

A small giggle from River snapped him out of his thoughts.

Oh no. No, no, no, no, no! Of all of the ways he didn't want the girl to know about how he felt; this had to be close to the top of the list of the ways he didn't want his feelings to be known.

Aw damn. What the hell had she been doin' snoopin' about up in his gorram brain? It was his brain! Ain't fair to hold a man's thoughts against him. 'Sides he weren't the first crew member to fall fer another, let alone the pilot. So maybe the pilot thing wasn't the reason he liked her, but it didn't change the truth of the matter none.

But if she was the one that knew, and now Mal was threatenin' him then that meant the girl'd gone and told Mal about it. That meant something…he wasn't quiet sure what that somethin' was. Maybe she didn't like him thinkin' on her in that fashion and wanted it ended? But Mal wasn't threatenin' death. Maybe she liked the idea and just wanted him to come right out and do something?

"Me an' Simon'r together now." Kaylee stated with a huge grin plastered to her face.

Jayne did a double take as the words left her mouth. He stared at the small mechanic then Mal and back again, more baffled now then he had been only moments before.

"And?" Mal asked, arms crossed in front of him in his 'I'm the captain and I can be intimidating' stance.

"An' we're real sorry we didn't jus' come out'n tell ya it's just…" Kaylee gestured in front of her as if her flailing hand could tell everything all they needed to know about the situation.

"We could never find the right moment." Simon finished for her.

"Right, well, as I hear it that's cause you two spent all the "right moments" in one of your bunks." Mal commented, staring hard at the doctor.

"Sorry, Cap'n."

"Yes, we're…we're very sorry." Simon stated with a confused look.

"Right, well, just don't go 'round hinding an' the like." Mal uncrossed his arms to point an angry finger at Simon. "I wanna know what's goin' on on my boat…at all times." He added as his shoulders lost their tense, intimidating posture.

The two nodded together and Kaylee gave a bright and happy smile with a small 'shiny' thrown in for good measure.

"That's it!" Jayne bellowed, finally finding his voice. "You called us in here all threatin' and the like just 'cause Kaylee finally laid the Doc?"

"Jayne!" Kaylee gasped.

"I called you all in here and threatened all of you 'bout hiding things from me, which ain't now, nor has it ever been, okay." Mal once again took up the captainy intimidation stance as he turned to Jayne.

"What the Doc an' Kaylee were hidin' it?" Jayne asked, seriously confused at the whole turn of events. "Hell, Mal anyone coulda told ya they's was together ever since Mr. Universe's. Hafta be blind, deaf, an' dumb to not notice the two of them."

"Jayne…" Kaylee almost whined as Simon stood in a stunned silence.

"Ain't your bunk right next to her's?"

"Jayne." Simon choked out.

"Less'n of course the two of 'em do it in the infirmary and the engine room all the time." Jayne continued on, unheeding of the other two's embarrassment. Hell, he thought he was going to die, couldn't much care about embarrassing someone when you've got the grim reaper on your mind.

"Mostly the engine room."

"River!"

"Mei mei!"

River gave the two a sidelong glance. "Well, you do."

"What everyone knew but me?" Mal shouted, mouth hanging slightly open.

Everyone went quiet at Mal's question. Slowly they all began to nod their heads, except for Simon who thought it was obvious that he knew he had been sleeping with Kaylee.

"What the hell!" Mal threw his hands up and turned away from his wayward crew of misfits. He took a deep breath and spun back around to stare at them all again. "New rule! No secrets, an' if ya know one 'bout someone else you tell me. Got it?"

The crew again all nodded, even Simon this time.

"Good! Now unless someone else's got somethin' to share we're done here." Mal stared at each of his crew members one last time. "Okay, then you can all leave."

Jayne blinked and shook his head, trying to clear out the confusion that this whole ordeal had created in his head. He turned and headed down towards the cargo bay. Times like these simple and repetitive work was needed, an' weights was as simple and repetitive as it got on this boat.

"An' no breakin' my new rule!" Mal shouted after them as the rest of the crew began to filter out of the mess.

River remained seated at the table and gave a quiet sigh. Mal turned to look at his gloomy pilot. With a small sigh all his own, he pulled out the chair next to her and sat down. "I did my best…" He said quietly, choosing to stare at the table top instead of her. She looked all sullen and it made him want to go an' shoot a certain someone. "I was all intimidatin' and everything." He offered her.

"I know."

"I could always hit him over the head with a wrench again." Mal offered seriously finally turning to look at her, hoping to see the hints of the smile he had been aiming for.

"No, the airlock will not be required." River said with a small nod and just the barest hint of a smile at the thought. "Just more time." She turned to look at Mal and gave him a small smile.

"Well, time we got." He gave her one of his own lopsided grins. "'Sides," he continued as he stood up from the table. "I don't know if I want everyone knowin' I'm breakin' my new rule just a minute after I made it."

"I should be getting to work." River said as she grinned up at her Captain before moving towards the bridge to do what she was being paid to do.

"An' River." Mal said quietly. She turned, standing half in and half out of the bridge, and looked back down the hallway to him. "That's the last time I get drunk and play poker with you."

River beamed at Mal "Xie xie Captain."

Le fin