Sacrifices

Dec. 16th, 2011 09:58 am
[personal profile] browncoat2x2
Title: Sacrifices
Author: [livejournal.com profile] browncoat_2x2
Rating: PG
Spoilers: Set post BDM.
Characters: Mal/Inara
Author's Note:Woah! I seem to have drabbled, or something. Written for the Firefly Friday Challeng #001 - Childhood, though I cheated a bit and it's really more Children. Something actually came to me though, so, I ain't complaining. Just seein' if I can still actually write something here :)




The truth was she had no real love of children.

She’d never been one to coo over babies; had no interest in holding them, and certainly no desire to have one of her own. She’d been adamant that she would never have children as far back as she could remember.

One of the advantages of having committed to the Guild so young was that there had been no expectation for her to get married or provide grandchildren. Some of her sisters had mourned that ‘loss’, she knew, but it hadn’t felt that way to her. As far as she was concerned, babies were an unwanted side effect of poorly planned intercourse and something she had no intention of ever experiencing.

And things had gone perfectly according to plan in that regard.

Until now.

Now, with Zoe’s little bundle of joy soon to join the crew, everything these days seemed to be about babies. What would they name the baby? What was the sex of the baby? Who would babysit the baby? Couldn’t she just not wait until she got to hold the baby?

And as Zoe’s pregnancy progressed and the topic of babies remained the main focus of the crew, the smiles and comments had inevitably started.

“When are you an’ the Captain gonna make one of your own?”

The first time Kaylee had asked her she’d been unprepared for the question, even though she’d known it would come eventually. Discomfited, she’d stammered something, and been relieved when Mal had assured them all that that was a long time off yet. But she hadn’t failed to notice the sparkle in his eye when he’d said it.

It gnawed at her, and she worried over it for days, before finally blurting out the truth to him one night.

“I don’t want children.”

He blinked at her, caught completely off guard by (to him) her sudden, out-of-the-blue announcement. But Mal wasn’t stupid, and she could see him making the mental connections, his eyes cutting away briefly before coming back to her. “Ain’t like this life is any sort for a young’un,” he said.

“It’s not stopping Zoe,” she said. Then, a statement: “You want one.”

Mal was at a loss for words. “I… Maybe? Someday? I figured we’d talk about it when or if the time came. I don’t know.” He sighed. “Look, I know everyone’s been askin’ on how long before we’re havin’ one. But it ain’t something we’ve got to decide on now--”

“It’s not something to decide on at all, Mal. I’m not going to change my mind!”

“All right,” he said, holding up his hands in a calming gesture. He shook his head. “Why you tryin’ to make a fight a’ this?”

“I’m not. I’m just letting you know, now, how I feel. And if… if children are something you want, then, maybe we’d be better off—”

“Woah! Okay, hold on, right there,” he said, moving to her. He smoothed his hands over her upper arms, bending to look her in the eyes. “There’s a million ‘n one things could happen between now and whenever we might think on havin’ a baby.” He held up a hand, forestalling her comment. “All I’m sayin’ is, this ain’t nothin’ we got to think on now. If the day comes we do got to think on it, well… I ain’t givin’ up ‘today’ for a ‘maybe tomorrow’,” he said, giving her a gentle squeeze. “Comes down to it, I’m a selfish fella, Inara. ‘fraid I’m gonna pick you every time.”

Inara shook her head. “You shouldn’t have to sacrifice having children to be with me—”

“An’ you ain’t sacrificed nothin’ to be with me?” he said, pointedly.

Of course she had. They both had made sacrifices... And they both would continue to do so.

“I’m right where I want to be,” Mal said softly, pulling her closer.

Inara sighed and leaned into him gratefully. “So am I.”

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