"I figured you got lost."
It's well after midnight when Simon knocks on the hatch to your bunk. It doesn't matter, precisely, you weren't sleeping. Hardly do anymore. You can't hold on to one thought long enough to let the sleep catch up to you.
You'd still like to know where he's been.
"River didn't want to sleep." He has already closed the door behind him, and begun to take his clothes off. You watch as sure fingers unbutton a starched white shirt, revealing porcelain smooth skin and taut hard muscles.
You like to watch him undress, and he knows this.
"Jayne wants to challenge me to a duel for you." You wonder immediately why you would bring that up, why you would say Jayne's name in this room. But Simon smiles, just a slight movement at the edges of a perfect mouth.
"Did you accept?"
"The day I finally shoot Jayne," your words are cool and blunt, "it won't be over you."
Simon nods, as his pants fall to the floor. He's done talking for tonight.
He came hard inside of you, and then fell asleep. You pull on your clothes and walk through Serenity's darkened hallways. The only sound you can hear is the chugging of Serenity's engine, as she floats through space. That's the way it that should be.
The bottle underneath the sink in the mess hall is labeled "whiskey". Its contents aren't exactly whiskey yet, but they're as near as you can get, this far from the Core. You pour two fingers into an iron cup, and sit down to the table.
Tonight Inara doesn't touch the light switch as she enters. She doesn't say a word, just moves past you, passing too close in the small space. You wonder if she knows. If she can smell Simon's scent on you, rough and bitter.
You wonder why you care.
You notice that she's combed her hair.
Inara reaches into the bowl of fruit on the countertop. Real fresh fruit, picked up on today's stop. She'd paid, saying the crew needed a treat. She picks up an apple, places it on a plate, and cuts it in half, then in half again. Two more strokes of the knife, eight perfect slices. It's symetry that even Simon would admire.
You wonder what makes you think things sometimes.
She looks up from her effort. "You're staring again."
"It's still my ship."
"Right. Mal," she takes a deep breath, "I meant to tell you today that I'm sorry."
She's making fun of you.
Inara continues talking, despite your silence. "I know sometimes I say harsh things to you. And I didn't mean that last night. About your battles."
"You meant it," you answer tersely, draining the last of the liquor from your cup.
She pauses, another breath. "Well. Yes I did. But I'm sorry."
"It ain't going to work."
"You're usin' your wiles again. Sweet talk, nice words and such. Want to talk about the routes I'm choosin'. It ain't going to work. I ain't changin' my position."
"You hoe-tze duh pee-goo..." she cuts herself off. "Why is it so impossible to believe that this is a sincere apology?"
"Because I ain't never known you to give one before."
"You've never deserved one before."
Silence. She picks up her plate, and she walks away.
"I figured you got lost." Simon opens his eyes as you reenter your quarters.
"I did." You barely realize that you've spoken.
"Nothin'." You pull off your clothes, and join him on the bed. "I thought you were sleeping, anyway."
"Just resting." Simon smiles, and kisses you. "Gathering my strength."
"Is that right, now? For anything in particular?"
Simon has reached down and taken your cock in his hand, stroking hard and sure along the shaft. He catches your stare in his own, as you turn hard underneath his touch. "Yes."
You lean into him, close enough to whisper. "Roll over."
He does. You reach underneath your bed to retrieve a small green jar, dipping into it and spreading the slippery contents across him.
You hear him gasp, and smile slightly. He likes the before part best. One finger slips inside him, testing. Then you bend your head and run your tongue along the cleft of his buttocks, tasting mint and the salty cleanness of Simon himself.
Simon moans softly into the pillow. "Is it your intention to tease me all night?"
You're working slower now, your tongue starting at the base of his spine and moving down. "Is there somethin' you'd rather I be doing?"
"Well, yes. Now that you mention it. I'd rather like it if you fucked me."
Tongue moving down, and now up. You feel a shiver ripple through his body. "Can't hear you."
Simon laughs, underneath short breaths. "You're a bastard."
"That's the general opinion." And you pinch him where his flesh curves roundest, watching the skin turn into patches of pink. "Ask me again."
"Mal, I'm a gentleman. Gentlemen don't beg."
One finger, two fingers, three fingers, reaching inside him with a smooth sureness that makes him clutch the sheets.
Words whispered so softly that you barely hear them. You lift yourself up and drive yourself inside him, so hard that you know you must be hurting him. But he doesn't say anything, just moans with each thrust. Finally he lets out a soft yell and you climax, collapsing on top of him, breathing in his sex and his sweat.
You reach for him and he comes inside both your hands, and then drifts comfortably into sleep. And you watch him, in the dark. You wonder if Jayne can make him beg.
You wonder why you care.