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New Fic: Reunion

Reunion
Fandom: Firefly
Rated: PG
Category: Vignette (704 words), Mal/Zoë Friendship.
Spoilers: None. Set after Serenity the valley and before Serenity the ship.
Summary: "You know, we really do have to stop meetin like this."
Note: Written for the “End of the Year Crazy Fest” on whedonland , using an old ff_friday  prompt: #165 - “Reunions.”

XXX

A handful of random shouts rang out in the night as a man ran down a deserted alleyway. His footsteps echoed in the empty space, but only for a moment. Suddenly, he cut to his left, disappearing down an second dark alley. When he spotted a pile of stacked wooden pallets, he dove behind it without bothering to investigate it first.

Cover was cover, and he needed it fast. He glanced behind him quickly before throwing himself into the small alcove the pallets made against the neatest building wall, fully expecting his pursuers to be hot on his tail.

But somehow the men following him missed his hard turn into the alley and ran straight into the road ahead of them instead. Malcolm Reynolds grinned. He was in the clear. Sometimes you get lucky, he thought.

And that’s when he heard the sound of a gun cocking directly behind him.

Then again, sometimes you don’t, he amended.

Mal slowly turned around with his hands raised, prepared to either talk or fight his way out of his now-even-more-precarious situation. As he realized who had gotten the drop on him, though, his smile returned, and he slowly lowered his hands. His would-be mugger (or killer) did the same with her gun, then greeted Mal with one word.

“Sir.”

Mal nodded. “Zoë.”

Neither word was a question, and nothing else was said for a long minute. Both Mal and Zoë remained hidden behind the pallets during the entire exchange in case Mal’s pursuers returned. After a while, when it seemed clear that they were truly off the hook, Mal gave Zoë a pointed look.

“You know, we really do have to stop meetin like this,” he said.

Zoë nodded her agreement. “Absolutely, sir. It’s become a problem.”

“And stop callin me that!” complained Mal. “I ain’t nobody’s ‘sir’ no more.”

“Whatever you say, sir.”

Zoë’s voice had a teasing tone, and Mal sighed. “You really are impossible. You know that, right?”

“Uh-huh,” grunted Zoë. Her attention was clearly elsewhere.

“See? Was that so hard?” asked Mal, turning his head to see what Zoë saw.

He noticed it immediately. A broken light bulb above a door. The perfect spot for a stealthy entrance to the building across the street. The building that just happened to be an old Alliance arms depository and was rumored to still be well-stocked.

“Not a problem, sir,” answered Zoë, still focusing on the doorway.

Mal snapped back at her. “You just can’t let it go, can you?”

Zoë was quiet for a second, then she quietly challenged her former sergeant. “Can you?”

Mal sighed. His answer was long in coming, but honest. “Not so much, no.”

“Thought so,” said Zoë. “Now, we gonna sit here all night or we gonna get some work done?”

“We?” asked Mal, eyebrows climbing.

“Seems to me another hand might be useful in this one is all,” mused Zoë, nodding her head toward the depository.

Mal grinned. He’d known immediately what Zoë was up to. Hell, he’d thought about it himself a time or two. And having her on his six for a job did seem a bit of a comfort. Still, though, two were easier caught than one, and having a partner opened up all sorts of areas for exploitation by enemies. He wasn’t sure about this. He bit his lip for a moment, then shrugged and muttered an answer.

“Well, seein as we keep runnin into each other anyhow…”

Zoë chuckled. “Exactly. You thinkin what I’m thinkin, sir?”

Mal nodded. His eyes narrowed and a mischievous glint appeared in them. “Reckon I might be,” he said.

“So, what’s the deal, then?” asked Zoë, all business.

Mal shrugged again. “Split down the middle?”

“Seems fair enough,” agreed Zoë.

“So, it’s partners, then?”

“Yeah. It’s partners… sir.”

Zoë moved then, and the scrape of her boots on the pavement covered Mal’s sigh.

They didn’t rob the Alliance depository that night, but when every gun in the building went missing a week later, every thug in the neighborhood was up in arms about a new team in town.

Those thugs were only half right.

After all, by the time anyone noticed the theft, Zoë and Mal were long gone.

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Comments

charlie_bz
Jun. 29th, 2010 07:52 pm (UTC)
oh, wow. oh, wow! oh, wow!!

Loved this! The time after the war and before Mal acquired Serenity is of great interest to me. I can also see how the two would be separated after the war then somehow find each other again. This fic is just fantastic!

What are your thoughts on how Mal got Serenity?
jackwabbit
Jun. 29th, 2010 09:20 pm (UTC)
Thank you, thank you, thank you!

And I agree about that period in Firefly history. It's interesting to think about what might have been.

As for Mal getting Serenity, well, we know he bought her from that dealer in OoG (unless that was just where he fell in love with Fireflies and he got Serenity later, which I suppose is possible), but there could be a lot of other things involved there. Where did he get the money? What was his motivation for getting a hit versus staying dirtside? Etc, etc, etc. I'm at work, and need to jet, so no more for now, but I'll think on it, k?

Later!
charlie_bz
Jul. 1st, 2010 04:47 pm (UTC)
I tend to think that Mal had to do something pretty serious to get the money for SErenity. Possibly something that Zoe wasn't involved in - she seemed surprised about the ship he bought. I dunno...then there was Mal's line from OoG about "don't have to be under anyone's heel" (totally paraphrased) which makes me wonder more.

I do think there are many interesting stories to be found in the time after the war ended. I totally don't think that Mal got some kind of settlement from the alliance because of Shadow.

hmmm....still thinking...will post more later!

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