Eleven Ways Simon Tam

Comes Out

- 1 - 

"Jayne," Simon says, gasping, "There's something you should know." He wiggles his hips back. Jayne's eyes cross, just a little, enough that the lines of Simon's back blur for a second.

And no matter how good it feels, Jayne don't much care for the talking, not at a time like this. He grunts, pushing forward, hands wrapped around Simon's hips.

"I'm gay," Simon says, breathless.

"Whatever," Jayne replies.

- 2 -

"—and that's when I decided," Simon says, smiling.

Inara pauses, teapot in her hand. "Decided?"

"That I'm gay." Simon holds up his cup.

After a moment, Inara decides that what she's feeling is best described as 'mild horror'. "Just because of that?"

Simon nods.

How is she supposed to respond to this story? She shakes her head lightly and pours the tea. It flows so perfectly, and she concentrates on that. Perfect flow. "I think that one unfortunate experience with such a  – woman — is perhaps not a sufficient reason to claim that one is solely attracted to men."

Shrugging, Simon brings the tea to his lips. "Well," he says, after swallowing a mouthful of the liquid, "there are other indications."

"There are?"

"For one thing, I find myself staring at Mal's ass at inappropriate times."

Inara's very pleased that she doesn't drop the teapot. "I see."

"Those pants," Simon continues, almost dreamily. "They don't leave much to the imagination."

They certainly don't. "I expect Mal likes it that way."

- 3 -

Kaylee rolls off Simon with a satisfied groan. "That was real nice, Simon. Real nice, especially considering. You know."

Simon isn't particularly coherent enough to talk right now. How do girls do that after sex, anyhow? "Huh?"

"I mean, Jayne bet I'd have to show you where to put it. But I figured hell, a doctor's got to learn all of that in school." She sighs again, long and deep, a smile on her face. "And you did. It was real impressive. Jayne ain't never gonna believe it."


"Yeah." Her eyelids droop.

"What are you talking about?"

"You. Being not so comfy with girls. Because –" she rolls over onto her side, cuddling into Simon.

"Kaylee. I'm not gay."

"Sure you ain't," she mutters into his neck. "Was real nice of you to try things out with me, though."

"I'm not. Gay."

She laughs a little and kisses him under his ear. "Right, right."

- 4 -

"Stop throwing yourselves at me!" Simon finally yells, in exasperation and desperation.

The womenfolk of the town look aghast. They'd dressed in their finest clothes and had brought their finest cooking.

"I'm sly, for the love of the 'verse!"

There is a collective sigh of disappointment.

In the distance, two men look at each other and grin. Widely.

- 5 -

He overhears them while they're in the lounge.

"I don't know," Kaylee says. "He's real close with River. Maybe there's – maybe that's why he don't –"

"That even legal in the Core?" Jayne asks. "Don't seem right at all, that kind of thing."

"Who knows. Rich folk do weird things. I mean, you've seen 'em together, right? Way he's always touching her, looking at her."

Jayne snorts. "Yeah, I seen it. Didn't pay it no mind, but now you bring it up, seems like maybe you got a point. Doc don't have eyes for you, he's too busy looking at little sister."

"Ain't fair," Kaylee mutters.

"Ain't normal," Jayne replies.

Simon shakes his head and sighs. This is really getting out of hand. Coming around the corner, he stands and stares at the two of them. "What the hell is wrong with you two? I don't have some kind of incestuous relationship with River. That's just – wrong. And pathetic."

"Then how come you ain't looking at me?" Kaylee frowns.

He rubs at his temple. "Kaylee. I'm gay. Sly. I have a preference for men-folk. I'm not particularly attracted to woman parts. All right? I'm not having sex with my sister!"

They both stare at him for a moment, until Kaylee slumps back against the chair.

"What?" What now?

"Least I thought you liked women. Might have had a chance." Kaylee frowns, her lower lip trembling.

"Son of a bitch," Simon mutters.

- 6 -

He's in the infirmary when Jayne finds him. Didn't take too much looking. "Uh. Doc?"

Simon looks up from his data. Probably looking at them scans of his sister again. "Yes?"

Jayne fidgets for a minute, then looks up to one corner. "I know you got a purple shirt, all shiny and slippery looking. Seen it around." He doesn't mention that the only time he'd seen it was when he was searching through Simon's things, that one time he'd been nabbed by hillfolk.

"Yes? And?"

"I was just wondering –" He pauses. Maybe it ain't right to ask. Too much. Might lead to threats or something.

Simon sighs. "What? Wondering what?"

"If it maybe –" Naw. He can't do it. It's stupid. No way Simon's going to listen, to let him, even if they do have this truce going on.

There's a long pause, him looking up at that corner still – needs dusting – Simon looking at who knows what. Finally, Simon sighs again. "Jayne. Yes, OK. Just yes."

Jayne looks down at him. "Really?"

"Yes. Don't make too much of it, all right?"

He grins. "Shiny!"

Simon looks surprised. "You're – happy?"

"Yeah! It'll be great!"

"Jayne, you're happy that I'm sly? I'm surprised."


"Uh. Wasn't that what you were asking?"

Nope. What is the doc's problem? Don't he understanding anything? "No."

"Oh. What was it then?"

"Just wanted to borrow your shirt, is all. Dress up nice for the whore job."

Simon's eyes close, and he looks faintly horrified. "I don't think the shirt will fit you."

"Oh. But can I try it?"

There's a long pause before Simon answers, his words slow, precise. "I suppose so."

Jayne grins again. "Thanks! Figured I'd get a better sexing if I dressed up nice, you know?" He reaches down and slaps Simon on the shoulder. "If it don't fit, I'll bring it back."

- 7 -

Simon climbs out of Jayne's bunk to find himself looking first at the Shepherd's boots, then his pants, and then up at his slightly startled face. He pulls himself up, and shuts the door behind him.

"Oh, my." Book says.

Simon knows what he must look like. Hair a mess, clothes askew. His lips feel tender, and he knows they must be red. "Hello," he says, with as much dignity as he can muster.

"I was just." Book gestures at Jayne's door. "Um. Spotting. Looking for a spotter. For lifting weights. I'm sorry to have intruded."

Smoothing down his shirt, Simon nods. "I think you might want to come back in an hour or so. Jayne's never good for much after –"

Book holds out his hand. "Yes. I understand. Perhaps you want to –" He seems at a loss for words.


"Yes. Excuse me." Book turns around and walks away.

- 8 -
"River?" Simon looks around the side of her bedroom doorway. "I just wanted to let you know that I'm off to do unspeakable things with Jayne in his bunk. So if you need me, that's where I'll be."

"I know," she replies, not bothering to look up from her drawing.

- 9 -

"And then I thought 'in for a penny, in for a pound', and decided to just do what I wanted." Simon hiccups. "I mean, hell, if you're in the process of turning your back on your parents, breaking the law, discarding your future, and losing all of your possessions, why not just get the kind of sex you want?"

"To sex! Especially the kind you want!" Wash pours Simon another drink before refilling his own glass. He overfills it, and they both laugh at the mess that pools on the table. Sooner or later, Wash thinks blearily, one of them is going to try drinking that too.

"Yep. Forget all this propriety and breeding and a nice future wife, I thought. Get what you want! So I went and got it. Picked out a club, picked out some clothes, had a few drinks, and picked up a stranger."

"Good sex?" Wash asks, because hell, Simon's got to have had good sex at least once.

Simon leers. Or maybe he's just had too much to drink and can't control his facial muscles. "Oh, yeah. Really good. Mind-bogglingly good."

Wash leans back, content. That's fair. That's real fair. If a man's giving up his whole life, he ought to get some good sex out of it.

"I mean, he was flexible. And inventive."

"Shiny." Wash knows all about flexible, and Zoe gets adventuresome thoughts in her head, some nights.

"Funny thing?" Simon drinks more, and hell, he's really knocking this stuff back. "Next morning, I was sore and exhausted, but I was focused. Really nailed some of the trickier details, that day."

Wash starts laughing, mostly because Simon just said nailed. "We got to do this more. Lots. Me'n you, drinking, stories. It's fun."

- 10 -

"Hi, Zoe," Simon says as he trips into the cargo bay. "How're things?"

She shrugs, arms crossed. "Where's everyone else?"

"Oh, they're on their way. Just slow." He grins at her. "That reminds me! I have something to tell you!"

There's a long pause, time enough for Simon to be mesmerized by the metal mesh floor. Perfect lines, perfect angles.

"Simon!" Zoe's yell snaps him out of it. "What do you need to tell me? Did something go wrong? Is it about the others?"


"The crew!"

Simon frowns. "Oh. No. Not at all. I just wanted to tell you that I'm the gayest doctor this side of the 'verse." He grins at her.

"Doctor, you are high as a kite."

He nods, nods, nods, and has to remind himself to stop nodding. "You're right!"

- 11 -

"You know, Captain, there's something I've been meaning to tell you."

Mal looks up from the piles of money they'd just earned. The job had been great. Better than great. He still feels a little dazed. Simon is really good at planning. So much so that Mal figures maybe he should give him an official crew title. Zoe has one (Second in Command). Jayne has one (Merc and Ornery Bastard). Kaylee has one (Mechanic and Happy Sunshine Annoying Person). Maybe it's time Simon has one too. Planning-Doctor Man or something like that. "Yeah? What's that?"

"I'm gay."

Mal looks back down at the money and thinks about all the supplies and spare parts he'll be able to buy. "I'm a little happy myself, Planning-Doctor Man. Giddy, even."

Simon stares, but Mal doesn't pay it much mind.

Claireweasley made a post that made me desperately long to write a fic that explored the theme of (cracky) ways Simon might come out to the crew. And I wrote a couple of comment-blurbs. But that wasn't enough.

Characters: Simon, Jayne, Kaylee, Wash, Mal, Book, Inara, Zoe, River
Rating: Oh, PG-13, I guess
Notes: It was going to be 101 Ways, but I got stalled. Crack-esque

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