Title: A Letter a Year
Jayne say hunched over a piece of paper in his bunk, one hand cramped around a pencil.
He was concentrating very hard on making it look neat.
But the pencil was awful little, and his hands were big, so it were hard.
I've moved some this year. I'm on a ship called Serenity, and she seems alright. The captain and I ain't figured out how my new job works just yet, but we'll get it.
He stopped and thought, tapping the pencil against his mouth. What else to say?
Wanted to make sure you knew, 'cause I know you like knowing what I'm up to.
He nodded in satisfaction. That sounded pretty good for a start.
I know you're busy, but if you could find the time to send me some new ammo and some socks, I would appreciate it.
He signed his name carefully, and stuck his pencil in his mouth while he stuffed the letter in an envelope.
He took some time to make the label look nice, and smiled with some pride.
The North Pole
Jayne grinned. Weren't no way this one was gonna get lost like last years!
Title: Never Too Old
"Oh, boy! It's Christmas!"
The loud yell echoed down the hall, and Mal grimaced. He could hear feet pounding on the deck outside his bunk, so he figured he had to get up.
Mal drug himself up the ladder, groaning when he realized how early it was. He came up just as Kaylee popped out of her own bunk, jumping up and down trying to get her shoe tied.
"Kaylee," he complained. "I thought we talked about this."
She just beamed at him. "It don't do no harm, Captain!"
"I thought we agreed that everybody on board was too old for Santa Claus this year, 'member?"
She nodded her head, trying to look concerned. "I know we did, Captain." She looked up at him. "But he gets so excited and he writes such nice letters to Santa! I'd hate to disappoint him!" She beamed at him as he sighed in defeat.
"Captain," Jayne stood in front of him with a resigned expression.
"Jayne," he nodded.
Jayne shuffled his feet. "Are you heading down to the mess?"
Mal eyed him. "I reckon."
"Well, come on, then!" The big mercenary hopped from foot to foot impatiently.
"What's the rush?" Mal leaned back against the bulkhead.
"You know Inara don't let me see what Santa brought me ‘til you get down there!"
Title: Going Visiting
They had just settled down on a decent size planet, for once, and Mal was looking forward to getting everything offloaded before the sun went down.
At least, that’s what he was figuring when Jayne came striding down the ramp, straightening his hat and brushing off his good shirt.
“Oh, hell, no!” Mal pointed an accusing finger at the mercenary’s back. “You get back here and help me move these crates!”
Jayne stopped dead in the middle of the ramp, gawking at the Captain. “But, Mal!”
“No.” Mal shook his head. “I don’t wanna hear no excuses. You can wait.”
Jayne fidgeted. “But, Mal,” he protested. “They’s gonna close at 6 tonight, on account of Christmas Eve!”
Mal blinked. “I ain’t never heard of a whorehouse closing at nightfall before.”
The big man shuffled his feet and looked embarrassed. “It ain’t no whorehouse. I wouldn’t go to a whorehouse tonight.”
“Then where you trying to get to in such a hurry?”
Jayne widened his eyes. “Nowhere?” he tried innocently.
“Jayne,” Mal stated calmly. “Tell me where you want to go, or I will be forced to make you clean out the septic tanks. Tonight.
“Well,” Jayne looked around. “I wanna head down to their shopping center.”
“You got some shopping to do?”
“Naw, I done got everything.”
“Then you don’t need to go.” Mal turned his back, conversation over. “Help me with these crates.”
“But, Mal!” Jayne whined. “Tomorrow’s Christmas!”
“What’s that got to do with tonight?”
“I ain’t even seen Santa!”