Series: Carnival #6
Summery: Some roller coasters aren’t big enough for two.
Links to all Carnival stories are available.
The girl was bouncing up and down again, clinging to his hand and giving him those eyes.
He really were going to have to have a talk with Mal about getting her to stop that.
But, this weren't a fight he was going to win. He could tell that already.
He had managed to veto the bumper cars, the tilt a whirl and the tunnel of love, but this one, he couldn't figure a way out of.
Girl had her heart set on it. And she weren't above using every trick in her book to get him to agree. She kept..looking at him, all wide eyed and pleading. It really weren't fair.
"Please, Jayne?" she begged. "She will not ask to go on the Ferris wheel again, if she can ride the dragon! Please?" And then she looked up at him with those eyes and rested her head on his shoulder. Her face was all kinds of pitiful.
He shot the ride in front of them a dubious look. It was one of them kiddie rides. A baby roller coaster. It looked like a dragon, and it even breathed steam. It looked pretty tame; for all that it went in circles.
"Alright, fine," he said grudgingly. "But just the once, I ain't looking to get sick again."
She squealed and bounced some more, even hopping up on tip toe to brush a kiss on his cheek.
He ignored that. Just like he ignored the feel of her, warm and sweet smelling, all pressed up against him again.
She hugged Turtle happily as they got in line. She beamed at Jayne. "It will be fun," she promised. "Round and round, riding a dragon! I think his name is Jax."
The guy in charge raised an eyebrow at Jayne as he helped River in, but didn't say nothing.
And then Jayne looked at the seats.
Between the girl and the turtle, there weren't no way he could fit in there with her.
And the rest of the ride was full.
She weren't paying attention, she was too busy leaning over and petting the dragon head in front of her.
She looked up at him with a blinding smile, and he knew there was no way he could pull her off the thing without her making a fuss or crying on him.
But he really weren't happy with the idea of her being by herself.
The operator was getting impatient, but Jayne sent him off with a glare. The kids could sit for a second while he figured this out. It wasn't like it would hurt 'em to wait.
The girl looked at him puzzled like, finally figuring out he weren't getting in. "Jayne does not want to fly?"
"Jayne ain't small enough to fly."
Her eyes widened in realization. She looked over at Turtle, who was strapped in right beside her. "Turtle doesn't need to fly," she offered. "He can sit on the ground while we ride."
He shook his head, "I think Turtle would wander off if you ain't there with him." He thought for a second. "Think Turtle can watch over you on this one?"
She nodded slowly. She was looking a little nervous. "Thought you would be here," she whispered. "The sky isn't as scary when Jayne is there to block out the sun."
"You still wanna ride?"
"She does," one hand clutched Turtle tightly. She looked a little uneasy. "If the dragon goes too high, we will not fall."
Jayne double checked her seat belt, 'cause he was feeling a mite uneasy about this idea too. But if she were sure she would be alright by herself, he was going to let it go.
"I'll be standing right there," he pointed to the fence. "Keep your eyes on me."
She nodded, and grabbed Turtle a little tighter. With one little hand, she patted the dragon head again. "Jax and Turtle will watch me up here, while Jayne keeps me anchored from the ground."
He stepped back to the fence, nodding at the operator to fire it up.
The girl was looking around, hands tight on her turtle. She was looking a little jumpy, and Jayne rethought letting her ride by herself. He took a step forward, but before he could get there, the dragon took off.
He watched her close the first round or two, and she looked like she was doing fine. She even took her hands off of Turtle to raise her arms up in the air on the first little drop.
She was doing fine, and she weren't watching him, so he took a look around at the other folks around him. Man couldn't be too careful, in his line of work.
A loud blast of music from the ride got his attention back real quick. The dragon was going pretty fast, and there was music blaring and strobe lights going off.
There was one going off right in the girl's face. She had her hands up in front of her face, trying to block it, and he could see her mouth moving like she was saying something.
And then she screamed.
Not a roller coaster scream, but a full on, terror filled shriek that had Jayne up and moving towards the operator of the gorram thing faster than he could spit.
He kept his eyes on her, even as he were threatening to beat the hun dan running the ride to an inch of his life.
The ride was slowing, and he was ripping her seat belt off and grabbing her up outta the seat before she could do more than turn her tear stained little face up to him and choke out his name.
Her little hands clenched tight in his shirt, and she keened into his shoulder as he snarled some suggestions as to what they could do with a ride that scares little girls.
People was staring, but he just clutched her tighter and tried to think of somewhere to take her.
She was still shaking something awful, and too many people was around for him to really feel comfortable putting her down yet, so he made for one place he swore he wouldn’t go.
At least on the Ferris wheel, he wasn’t going to have to worry about nobody hearing him call her bao bai.
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Next: Ferris Wheel