Rating: PG (OMG!)
Word Count: 731
Warnings: The most cliched plot device ever used, because I am uncreative.
Disclaimer: Not mine.
Place your cursor over the Chinese for the translation.
This time, Simon awoke to the decidedly less than pleasant feeling of his stomach trying to digest itself. He laughed quietly, thinking that it must’ve been his all-night “workout” that left him feeling so hungry. Jayne was still asleep, snoring softly into his pillow. He looked so remarkably peaceful like that that Simon didn’t want to wake him. His eyes flitted to the pile of clothes on the floor, narrowing in distrust. That floor. As soon as his feet touched it, reality would set in. The reality of what they had done, what it meant and didn’t mean, what the consequences might be. That damned, mean-spirited floor. Much better to stay in bed forever, sheltered by darkness and anonymity and Jayne’s strong arms. A loud growl of protest from his stomach reminded him that this was not an option, and he slipped soundlessly out of bed. His feet touched the floor.
And it was okay. The universe didn’t ground to a halt. Reality as he knew it didn’t shatter around him. Maybe things would just fall into place for once without him having to worry about them. A smile made its way across his face as he stood up, stretching widely before setting off to retrieve his clothes.
He was only barely able to suppress a startled cry as a hand suddenly grabbed his wrist.
“”Where’re you goin’?” Jayne’s sleepy voice protested.
“Just going for food, and a shower. Care to join me?”
“Depends. Food and shower in that order?”
“Definitely food first. As desperately as I need a shower, if I don’t eat something soon my stomach is going to eat a hole through itself. I don’t know why I’m so hungry. What time is it anyway?”
Jayne’s arm fell heavily over the side of the bed and reached around for a moment before coming up with a clock. “Looks like it’s five seventeen.”
Simon furrowed his eyebrows in confusion. “It’s only five seventeen AM?”
“No, it’s five seventeen PM. Five eighteen, now.”
Simon blinked. Panic, somehow both fuzzy and sharp, started to settle over him like a fog. He swallowed hard, trying to stave it off. That had to be a mistake.
“…Are you sure?”
“I ain’t so dumb I don’t know how to read a clock.” A hint of Jayne’s characteristic dry anger had crept back into his voice. Simon started to shake.
“Cao wo da zu zong shi ba dai Jayne, do you know what that means?”
“…That we missed breakfast?”
Simon tried not to hyperventilate. It wasn’t working.
“…Yes, among other things. Think, Jayne! You had a job to do today. The Captain was planning to land at one. One PM, more than four hours ago! Which means, when you weren’t there at noon, somebody must have come looking for you and found-” He slumped, boneless, back onto the edge of the bed, his vision clouding over, the sound of his heartbeat thudding in his ears. “Oh God, somebody saw us.”
And just like that, Jayne’s defenses were back up. Whatever concern he felt for Simon was buried under so many layers of hurt and anger that it may as well not have been there at all. He licked his lips and remained pointedly facing the wall.
“And that’s just about the worst possible thing you could imagine, right? Bein’ caught in bed with me? Just imagine what people’ll think.”
Simon covered his eyes with his hand, massaging his forehead in vain against the migraine that had settled there. “Don’t do this to me, Jayne. You know that’s not what I meant.”
“There’s only so many ways ta take somethin’ like that.” His voice was quiet; barely audible. Not the explosion of anger that Simon had expected. This was much scarier.
“You should go.”
“I’m not leaving until we-”
Before he had time to finish the thought Jayne had grabbed one of his guns from the wall, cocked it, and brought the barrel to rest against the back of Simon’s head in one fluid motion.
“I said get out.”
Simon pitched forward off the bed, scooped up his clothes, stumbled, picked himself back up, and climbed out of the room. The rest of the crew was most likely still planet-side. Besides, modesty wasn’t worth being killed for.
And there was no doubt in his mind that at that moment, Jayne would have shot him.
X-posted to jayne_simon and talkcrazy.