Disclaimer: Joss is boss.

Author's Notes: My second Firefly fic, the first having been posted yesterday.


She never sleeps more than a few hours, and even then, it's a soldier's sleep; light, alert, controlled.

But lying there, listening to him snore lightly, feeling his warmth…it comforted her. It was better than sleep.


That was before he died. Now he's gone, but the she can still hear him breathing rhythmically, even when she's staring at his side of the bed and telling herself that he's not there.


Zoe is practical, and grounded, and straight-thinking. She doesn't believe in the spiritual, or the superstitious. Wash is gone, and there's no such thing as ghosts, and she tries to cover up the phantom sound with her own breathing, but she can't; it's in her head.

She can't bring herself to leave, either, or to tell anyone. They wouldn't laugh, but they would give her sympathy, pity, and tell her quietly that it's okay, while privately worrying about her mental stability.

So she doesn't, and every night, she just lies here, trembling beneath the sheets, and listens to his breathing.