There are some days when Mal wonders why he thought crew were a good idea. It could've been just him, or him and Zoe. But no. He'd had to go and get starry-eyed and ambitious, had to start thinking big. Crew.
But, being captain, and being decent at sneaking around, it means sometimes Mal gets to hear and see some mighty interesting and funny things involving said crew. Well, there're those disturbing things too. Like the time he walked in on Zoe and Wash, about to do something that folk don't have any business doing in a cockpit.
He can't ever quite forget Zoe sitting there, missing some vital bits of clothing, saying, "Sir," while Wash scrambled and blathered and showed Mal body parts he could have done without ever seeing.
Ever. Zoe, she's the possessive type.
Or, there was the time he walked into the kitchen and straight into a frank and open, and horrifyingly dirty talk between Kaylee and Inara about the various merits of battery-operated – devices. It had just been the capper to one of those days.
But sometimes it's funny. And usually that funny involves Jayne. Mal, deep down, he lives for those days. So it puts a smile right on his face when he's walking down the hall, normal-style, and he hears Jayne yell,
"What the hell are you doin' with THAT?"
Jayne yelling with that special kind of panic in his voice, it always spells fun. Mal stops, sneaks a little, moves up as close to the infirmary as he can get – without being caught out – and leans against the wall. He just settles in for a good listen.
Simon's voice – and Mal ain't surprised it's Simon that Jayne's yelling at – is tight, controlled, and just a little slick, when he answers. "Just open your mouth, Jayne."
And that ain't what he expects to hear. In fact, it's maybe the last thing he ever expected. The smile on his face, it just starts to widen. He knows if someone, like maybe Kaylee, came along right now, no way would they mistake this particular smile for friendly.
"I ain't puttin' that in my mouth. Gorram it, put it away, Doc." Mal knows that tone of voice; Jayne's being mulish. It's one of his very best skills.
"So it's 'doc' again, is it? Would it kill you to call me by my name? Didn't we agree on a truce? Doesn't a truce include treating each other like people?"
"You figure stickin' that thing in my mouth's gonna make me people? I figure it's gonna make me gag."
He never figured Simon would be one getting this particular kind of pushy in the infirmary. With the door open. And folk just liable to wander by. Jayne, well, he wouldn't care. But Simon? Seems the good doctor has an exhibitionist streak none of them knew about.
No way is Mal going to let him live this one down. He's already got plans starting to form.
"Oh, for the love of – you won't gag. I'm not exactly without skill, you know."
There's a longish pause, and even though he's got a growing feeling of disturbance, Mal can clearly visualize Jayne's 'thinking face'; it's the one he uses when something is problematic. Then, "Nope."
"Jayne. You promised you would."
Hell, Simon knows how to wheedle. Mal is suddenly glad it ain't him Simon has his eye on. There's no way he can imagine himself opening up for Simon. Hell, he can't even imagine Jayne doing it. Never even crossed his mind that Jayne was fond of man parts. Well, other than his own.
"Ain't no ruttin' way I did."
"Musta been drunk."
"Of course you were. You were drinking to kill the pain."
Yeah, Mal can just imagine what kind of pain they're talking about, too.
And there's this snapping sound, something that takes Mal a few moments to place. Then he recognizes it – the sound of Simon pulling on one the edge of one of them disposable gloves.
Now that is just plain kinky. Who'd have thought it? Today's a day for surprises, and Mal's just consumed with a feeling of – glee. That's pretty much the only way he can put it.
Gorram glee. He's going to be able to use this material for months.
"Ain't feelin' pain now."
Simon sighs, and Mal can just imagine the look on his face. "You will if you don't open up."
Some days, Simon's voice seems laced with steel. Not that Mal would ever be stupid enough to tell him that.
There's a longish pause, then Jayne says, "Fine." He sounds a bit pissed, but also kind of relieved. Ha. He puts on a good act, but Mal ain't fooled.
His chest is starting to hurt, on account of him trying so hard not to laugh. Wouldn't do to give away his position. But when he hears a strangled groan followed by a satisfied huff from Simon, he can't help it. The laughter just spills over, and before he knows it, he's doubled over, howling. Zoe. He's got to tell Zoe. Why ain't she around when he needs her to be?
He's been laughing for what seems like an age when shoes come into his field of view. He straightens up a little, wiping away a couple of tears. Simon's standing there, looking annoyed, and – yep. He's in that doctor coat of his. Who knew? Guy's just a big old ball of kink hiding under a prim and proper exterior.
Now, ain't that just always the way?
"Something wrong, Captain?"
"Nope." But the look on Simon's face, it's enough to start him up laughing again. Feels like it's been an age since he's laughed like this.
"Because you're disrupting –"
He holds his hand up. "No need to say it. Maybe – might want to think about closing the door next time. Ship's full of eyes."
Simon shrugs. "I didn't see the need –"
Exhibitionist. Just like Kaylee, who never sees the need to shut the engine room door when she brings home one of her bits of fun. "Or maybe stick to your bunk."
Something flickers across Simon's face. "You want me to perform dental surgery in my room?"
Dental surgery. Yeah, that's clever. "So that's what rich folk are calling it these days?" Ah, the euphemisms of the wealthy and fancible. Always good for some fun.
Yeah, Mal can play it that way, if that's what Simon's looking for. But later – Simon ain't going to see it coming when Mal decides to have a bit of fun with the whole thing. For now though, he takes a deep breath. Grinning, he reaches out, turns Simon around, and pushes him back towards the infirmary. "Best get back to your fun. Leave him too long, you're gonna have to do that song and dance to convince him again."
Walking down the hall, whistling, he almost misses it when Simon asks, again, "What?"
|Characters: Jayne/Simon, Mal
Summary: Usually the funny involves Jayne. Sometimes, Mal lives for those days. Written for angstslashhope.