Without making a sound, River Tam smoothly crawled along the cold, metal floor of Serenity. Even when she wasn't trying to, River always had the ability to slide silently throughout the ship, seeming more like she was floating than walking. But on this instance, the need to stay hidden was especially important for River. Tonight, she had already caused enough trouble on the ship and if she were discovered up in the ceiling, spying on her brother, Simon, and his girlfriend, Kaylee, it would only make things worse. She finally made it over to where Simon and Kaylee were standing in the engine room and talking rather heatedly and River peeked down between the metal grates of the floor to see Simon and Kaylee on the floor below.
River couldn't make out exactly what they were saying but she knew what they had to be talking about. It hadn't been ten minutes since it had happened. But the real story behind what happened tonight had roots stemming back many weeks. Ever since the massive confrontation with the Reavers where Mal had broadcast to the entire galaxy the secrets of Miranda and the origin of the Reavers, things aboard Serenity had changed significantly in River's life. Obviously her being promoted to the pilot of Serenity after the tragic death of Wash was the most significant one in terms of duty but to River personally, the more important event was when she fell in love for the first time.
River took her focus off of Simon and Kaylee below and allowed her mind to wander back to when she first felt this amazing new feeling. It was just after the funerals held for Wash, Mr. Universe and Shepherd Book when the crew of Serenity was repairing the ship. River had been skulking around in the ceilings again and come across Kaylee and Simon in the engine room, repairing the engines. But when River came upon them, they were no longer working on the engines and instead were kissing each other passionately. River smiled to herself when she saw this because she knew how badly the two of them longed for each other and it was nice to see them finally getting to be happy with each other. But as they sunk to the floor and Simon peeled off Kaylee's tank top, River suddenly found herself unable to turn away.
While staring down at them from the ceiling, River found herself unable to take her eyes off of the young engineer. River suddenly felt very warm and felt an unusual twinge in her abdomen as she watched Simon and Kaylee continue to shed more clothing until both lay completely naked on the floor of the engine room. Even though she was a good 15 feet or so above them, River was still able to focus intently onto every little detail of Kaylee's body. Meticulously, River studied every inch of exposed flesh on Kaylee's body, studying every quivering muscle, every drop of sweat glistening on her skin. And for some reason that even she couldn't explain, River also started feeling a twinge of jealousy, wishing that it were she who was down on the floor of the engine room and not her brother. With her mind racing, River began imagining that she was indeed down there and was the one holding Kaylee's beautiful body in her arms and softly kissing her neck, making Kaylee softly whimper as she ran her rough hands down River's back.
As she watched Simon and Kaylee and fantasized about being in her brother's place, River began to feel aware of a strange feeling coming from her groin. While yes, she was aware that she had started sweating a bit herself from how warm she felt, she couldn't remember a time where she had ever sweated from her vagina before. River cautiously reached under the skirt she was wearing and slowly brushed her fingers across the soft material of her underwear and noted that her underwear was practically soaked through from the moisture now flowing from her groin. On a whim, River brought her hand up to her face and gently sniffed the fluid glistening on her finger. It definitely didn't smell like sweat, that she knew but she couldn't imagine what it could be then. She darted her hand underneath her skirt once more to investigate exactly what was going on with her body. River gently probed around her underwear, gently prodding and poking herself trying to locate the source of the fluid.
Suddenly River's fingers brushed across a small nub just above the entrance to her vagina and she felt an intense rush of ecstasy suddenly erupt throughout her body. It was so intense that River wanted to cry out because of how good it felt but knew that she mustn't be discovered so she tried to suppress the need to whimper and instead bit down on her lip. Slowly the pleasure ebbed away from her body and left River softly panting for breath. Cautiously, River gently ran her finger along the nub again and once more an intense wave of pleasure washed over her and once more River found herself biting down on her lip to keep from crying out. She remembered back to her childhood, reading through Simon's anatomy textbooks, learning about the body and strained to think about what could be causing her these feelings. She could clearly picture the section on the female reproductive system; remember every diagram, every cross-section, and even all the text, right down to the punctuation. She then remembered something called the clitoris and remembered reading that it was the pleasure center of the female reproductive system. After feeling the intense jolts of pleasure that just faint contact had caused, she certainly felt satisfied with the book's definition.
Licking her lips, River detected a faint trace of blood coming from her mouth from her efforts to stifle herself and looked down once more at Simon and Kaylee who had started making love by this point. River concentrated hard on Kaylee's face, mesmerized by how Kaylee's face contorted against her will from what Simon was doing to her. Kaylee's soft cries and whimpers made their way to River's ears, which caused River to feel even warmer inside. Like a surgeon, River studied every detail of Kaylee that she could, taking careful note of Kaylee's full breasts and how they rose and fell with every breath Kaylee took. As she watched, River noticed her hand instinctively trail back to her clitoris, which she lightly stroked, without even being able to think of why she was doing it. River also could feel her nipples hardening underneath her sweater and reached under her shirt with her free hand. She gently pinched her erect nipple and once again felt a surge of pleasure, though not nearly as intense as the sensations coming from her clitoris.
Once more, for reasons she couldn't explain or control, River was consumed with the thoughts of her being down on the floor with Kaylee, being the one to make Kaylee moan like that and having Kaylee's hands on her own body where her hands were occupied. With one hand on her breast and one between her legs, River no longer could contain herself and allowed herself to whimper and gasp from the sensations she was giving herself, deciding that Simon and Kaylee were far too busy to be able to hear her. Just then, Kaylee practically screamed out and clutched Simon's body close to her and simultaneously, River could feel a small explosion in her groin, sending massive shockwaves of pleasure crashing through her body. River's eyes rolled back and she went rigid as the intense feelings of bliss consumed her to such a degree that she couldn't even make a sound. Her brain then stopped and she just enjoyed the feeling of total bliss, not even caring about what was going on below her and instead just let herself be wrapped up in the warmth and happiness.
"What were you thinking, Kaylee?"
River blinked and suddenly she snapped back to the present where she was once again above Simon and Kaylee in the engine room. But unlike a few months ago, there was no love being shown amongst them. Simon looked angry while Kaylee just hung her head in shame. Kaylee softly muttered an answer to Simon who didn't seem pacified by it and instead starting pacing back and forth quickly while his hand plastered to his forehead. Simon stopped and took a deep breath while Kaylee said something that River could hear this time.
"She just kissed me, Simon. I couldn't help it."
River felt a great twinge of shame for what had happened in the kitchen. Yes, she had kissed Kaylee after Kaylee had managed to pin down River during a tickle fight between the two. Ever since seeing Simon and Kaylee in the engine room, River could not seem to get Kaylee out of her mind. No matter where she went, or what she was doing, River constantly had an image of Kaylee fixed in her head. She found herself longing to be around Kaylee, to see her smile, to feel her touch, to smell her hair, which River knew always managed to smell of strawberries and engine oil. Every time Kaylee was around, every time she spoke to her, every time Kaylee would gently touch her arm, River would feel a swoop in her chest and could feel blood rush to her cheeks. River had heard of the concept of love but never really understood what it would feel like or even if she would feel it at all in her life. But from what she could see in Simon and Kaylee's individual minds, she realized that they were having much of the same feelings and sensations about each other. Without meaning to, River had fallen in love with Kaylee.
And tonight she had kissed her in full view of everyone. River remembered back to the moment, remembered the electricity she felt in her lips as they pushed against Kaylee's. Remembered how Kaylee had tensed up briefly in resistance but slowly melted into the kiss and kissed River back. For just a moment, everything was perfect in River's life. But their beautiful moment was interrupted harshly by Jayne, who without any regard for privacy, blurted out, "What the hell'r you two doin'?" In an instant, River felt five pair of eyes staring intently at her and could feel the thoughts of everyone without even having to open her eyes and face them. Mal, Zoë and Inara were dumbstruck, Simon horrified and Jayne confused but River could also feel him studying the scene intently for use later in his bunk. River gently pulled back from Kaylee and looked deep into the radiant young engineer's eyes to find simultaneous fear and comfort.
River could hear Mal blustering a bit as he tried to work up something to say but before he could, the sound of heavy footsteps on metal pierced the air as Simon went storming out of the mess hall. Kaylee quickly rose and dashed out after him, leaving River alone with the inquisitive gazes of the remaining faces. Everyone just stared at River, who merely sat there, staring at her feet, knowing the gravity of what she had just done. For a full minute there was silence before River suddenly stood and walked out of the mess hall without so much as a look at any of the crew as she strided past them. Once she knew she was alone, River climbed up into the ceiling grates and set off to the engine room where she no doubt knew Simon had left for and Kaylee followed to try and explain.
Simon now had his head bowed and could be seen silently muttering to himself with his face pressed against the wall of the engine room and Kaylee just stood in the center of the room, staring down at the floor, wringing her hands together. River watched the scene intently, listening to what the two of them were feeling. Simon had a thousand questions running through his mind about the incident, never bothering to try and answer any of them. Kaylee just silently sobbed and felt miserable, trying to work out why River did that but more importantly, why she enjoyed it so much. Suddenly Simon's demeanor changed and River felt a sudden rush of fear and silently muttered "No, no, no…" to herself, trying somehow to psychically convince Simon not to do what he was thinking about doing. But it was too late. Simon slowly turned to Kaylee, trying to avoid eye contact with her as he slowly took a deep breath.
"I'm sorry Kaylee. But I can't deal with this. I don't know if it'd be smart for us to see each other anymore. I'm sorry."
And River instantly felt both Simon's and Kaylee's hearts shatter simultaneously.
Kaylee slowly looked up and at Simon, tears streaming down her face, looking for any sort of warmth from the doctor, hoping that this was just some cruel joke he was playing. But she saw nothing but coldness and stone. Kaylee had never felt pain like this before; when that weasel, Dobson, had shot her, the pain didn't feel half as bad as this did. Sobbing loudly, Kaylee dashed from the engine room, trying to get as far away from the pain as she could. Simon just stood there, head bowed in shame as tears slowly fell from his face. Suddenly he felt something wet drop onto the back of his neck from above. Looking up, he saw his sister's eyes through the grates, spilling tears down onto him. Simon shot her the dirtiest and most hateful look he could muster before walking away himself, leaving River up alone in the ceiling, sobbing.