The Sharp Side of the Apple

by belasera

[Story Headers]

THE SHARP SIDE OF THE APPLE
by belasera
A vague disclaimer is nobody's friend: All recognizable characters, etc. belong not to me, but to Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and Fox, and no money is being made here. The story, however, is mine. R, kiddies
Written for Rebecca, who wanted to see boys kissing. If you don't, please don't read it. Xoxo

It was the apple. How absurd is that? It was in those days after Ariel, when I knew I was gazing at him with something too akin to worship and I couldn't stop myself. Even after I'd begun to suspect the truth of the matter, I still fell asleep remembering that terrifying escape with a bone deep sense of security. My whole world had been turned upside down, but here on this miserable ship I had found something completely new. People who would fight for me. No, it would be dishonest to say that I had credited the captain or Zoe for our rescue, I was thinking of Jayne when I fell asleep, thinking how he fought for us like no one I'd ever seen.

It was silly and over the top, the way I felt. I couldn't stop though, wanted to express my thanks, wanted to tell the story a hundred times. Only Jayne looked uncomfortable when I did and the captain looked even surlier than usual, and Kaylee looked bored and a mite irritated. I was alone in the pleasure of the memory.

Jayne's seeming humility, and then those apples...they were like little pieces of a former life, a whole crate of what I used to have. Except, in my former life they hung in a silver basket in a refrigerated pantry, and they were cored and sliced before eaten off a plate. It made me laugh, to think I ate like that. Everyone here had there own way, too, though. River nibbled, Book and Inara took the skins off, Wash held his like a bird that may fly at any moment, Zoe and Mal performed their dark apple ritual with unnerving practice and Kaylee looked to gobble hers whole. Jayne....who eats an apple like that? Like it's a thing not to be touched, he speared it on that knife he carries.

I wondered at first if he only did it to impress, but he did it again, when he didn't know anyone was watching.

It was past midnight, and I was reading on the small couch in the dining room when he walked in. His back to me, he pulled out that knife and stabbed the lone apple on the table as if it could have run off. I cleared my throat and he turned, made that little angry nose with his tongue that usually punctuates our encounters, even more so since Ariel, oddly enough. I sighed a bit, and it was all just more of the same. I thought to myself that maybe it was my admiration he couldn't stand, though he seemed to like it all right in that mudder kid. The thought of that kid and Jayne edged my brain into a new territory and I felt a blush creeping up my neck as Jayne stood in front of me, knife and apple and all. "I'm a gorram fool" I thought, to be blushing like I was, and in front of the man ape, even if he did save my life once, and I was ashamed of the stutter that almost stopped me from saying to him,

"If you cut your mouth open on that knife, I will give you the ugliest stitches you've ever seen."

He just rolled his eyes and walked toward me, shoving me over with his shoulder to sit on the couch. I bit my tongue to keep from pointing out the empty chairs as his long legs settled themselves, his knee giving mine one good thump before resting there against it.

He swallowed down his apple bite and sneered out at me,

"Aw, doc, I don't know what I'd do if my pretty mouth was marked up. I might be out of the running for Miss Persephone next year."

Then he actually took the knife and offered it to me. As if I would share any apple with him, let alone eat off that knife. The idea was repugnant; I had no idea where that thing had been. It must have shown on my face, not like I was hiding it, because he laughed pretty loud.

"Yeah, probably riddled with germs. Guess a fancy little thing like yourself might just die of shame to be seen sharing something with me. Even if it is the very last one. Probably for a long time, too."

He grinned at my fleeting look of disappointment, and added with relish,

"Well, I'm sure it won't be the last time you pass up something good just `cause it ain't seemly."

His voice wasn't playful, just frank in a manner which I didn't expect and there was enough of a ring of truth to his words to give me an uncomfortablness. I thought of Kaylee for a moment, how she knows what she wants and then I thought again of Jayne and that mudder and I wondered just what he wanted. Just what I wanted.

I tilted my head against the couch and turned toward him, that apple still held out in offering. Slowly I leaned forward, to take a bite. The blade's edge was facing me, I felt a twinge of fear that I would really slice my lip open, but then there was nothing but the cold crunch of the fruit and I smiled around it as my tongue finally licked the blade. I laughed when I pulled back, a bit of apple clinging to my lower lip and Jayne grinned at me. Took a bite himself, until there was almost nothing left, and cleaned the blade of apple juice with a long swipe of his tongue. I moved to wipe my mouth and he stopped me, held my wrist in his hand and I was wildly unnerved by the sudden looming proximity of him. I was so unused to this odd sort of physical closeness, even the sort when he shoved me out of his way as he so often did. It was an intimacy I thought I'd never be comfortable with, it was the reason I never played ball in the cargo hold, and it was something else I avoided as being unseemly.

When he brushed the pad of his thumb across my lip to clear off the apple bit I shuddered with discomfort, when he brought it to his own mouth and licked his thumb clean it was a gut punch of longing that I didn't know how to disguise. I was out of my depth, here on this couch with this man who seemed to want to do everything in some manner completely alien to me.

I shook my head at him "Jayne, I..."

He swung his body closer to mine, dropped the apple and placed his fist on the couch next to my hip farthest from him. It was only a playful sort of trap, except he didn't know how unfamiliar a thing it was to me, to feel trapped at all. Or maybe he did, maybe he trapped me carelessly and grinned so wickedly because he knew I couldn't move, even if he didn't touch me at all.

"I could show you all manner of unseemly things, doc."

His voice scraped my ear and as he moved closer, his stubble scraped my throat just enough to make me gasp. It seemed that was enough consent for him, if in fact he needed any at all. He pinned me fully, moving his face to the other side of my neck as his hands went to my hips. I leaned my head back, put one of my shaking hands against his chest, ready to push if I had to. I wondered what he'd do if I did, and realized that I didn't care. He scraped his teeth along my collarbone and climbed onto my lap, pinning me truly, and I couldn't hide my delight from him or from myself. I dared a look at his face for the first time since he'd touched me and was rewarded with a grin that flashed like violence across his face. He ground his hips against me and I felt like the ship was spinning into atmo. I didn't know how to get my bearings with him all over me, his forceful fingers on my neck and at my belt buckle. He was a danger to me, and he seemed to have limitless ways to show me the real truth of that. To show me the things I could be, or want. To turn me into a creature of base desire, to show me the thrilling bit of danger hidden in the mundane. The urge to maul the hell out of him caught me in the gut and I put my hands on either side of his face and pulled him down. I didn't know if he'd let me kiss him, but he didn't stop me when I did, when I pushed my lips against his and tasted lust and sweat and the cold sharp side of the apple.

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Title:  The Sharp Side of the Apple
Series Name:  Apples
Author:  belasera   [email]
Details:  Series  |  R  |  *slash*  |  7k  |  10/11/05
Characters:  Jayne, Simon
Pairings:  Jayne/Simon
Summary:  It was the gorram apple.
Notes:  Pre BDM

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