toxic_corn: Summer Glau is pretty. (deadly rayne)
[personal profile] toxic_corn
Title: River Gets A Gun
Author: toxic_corn
Pairing: River/Jayne
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Everything is Joss's. Not mine.
Summary: How River got her ginormous gun.
Notes: The prequel to Drinking Night. Sequel coming soon!


River Gets A Gun


“This one’s more like it,” the captain said with satisfaction, picking up a tiny pistol. “Small. Compact. Could whip it out at a moment’s-”


“Not impressive.” River waved it away dismissively. “All wrong for the situation at hand.”


Mal looked stunned that his expert advice had been rejected so swiftly. Zoe’s laugh disguised as a cough brought him out of his momentary speechlessness and he looked around the shop as if to make sure none of the other patrons had overheard River’s words. A man had his pride, after all.


“And what situation would that be?” Mal attempted a casual tone but ended up sounding as miffed as he looked.


River stared hard at some of the bigger guns in the glass case, entranced by their cool, shiny surfaces. She pictured them clenched in a tight fist, knuckles scratched and battered, forearms tense with bulging veins…


“Noneya,” River whispered.


Shen me?” Mal’s brow furrowed.


She looked up at him, face sober. “Noneya business.”


This time Zoe left the shop to have her “coughing fit” and Mal looked as if he couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “Why the hell did you want me to come ‘n help you pick a gun, then?!”


“Didn’t!” River exclaimed indignantly. “You invited yourself!”


“You said and I quote, ‘I’m purchasing a gun today. It will be difficult but I hope to have his assistance.’”


River’s expression turned severe. “I was speaking to Kaylee and it was rude of you to eavesdrop.” She shook her head in disappointment. “Conceited. You think you’re the only ‘him’ in the ‘verse?”


“Fine then,” Mal said gruffly. “Choose your pice on your own. I don’t have time for this fei hua anyway.” With these parting words, Mal strode out the door without looking back.


River felt a twinge of sympathy for the captain’s wounded pride. His assumption may have been conceited but he’d acted with the best of intentions. Maybe she’d make it up to him later by telling him about an unattended barrel of ale she’d seen behind the town’s best tavern. Deciding that this was a good plan, River went back to inspecting the guns on display.


She didn’t look up when the bells above the door jangled or the heavy footfalls came her way.


“What can I do ya for?” the man behind the counter asked.


“Need me some ammo. For a Callahan.”


River’s head snapped up and she gazed at the man beside her, heart pounding. Could he hear it? How could he not; it was drowning out the sounds in her own mind.


Jayne didn’t seem to notice her as he waited for the man to get his ammunition from the back. He was staring at the guns on display, nearly salivating. His gaze settled on the largest gun there and he moaned aloud, pressing a hand to his heart.


“Ain’t you a beaut?” he whispered reverently.


The man came back with the ammo and Jayne asked in a hushed tone what the gun was worth, as if it could hear him and be offended by his effrontery for thinking he could own such a fine bit of weaponry.


River smiled and Jayne’s face fell when the man named the price. She had just the right amount after saving for months and borrowing from the Simon’s Sock Drawer fund.


As Jayne paid for his bullets and slunk out the door with his tail between his legs, River tapped the glass above the gun and announced, “I’ll take this one.”


Continued in Drinking Night
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September 2015

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