Word count: About four hundred words.
Thanks to: tigerbright and cesy.
Posted here for archival purposes. Official post here.
"You can't have her." It was a good phrase. Short and to the point. Mal was proud of it. It'd have had more weight if he'd been standing and not bleeding out quite so much while saying it, but you couldn't have everything.
The gao yang jong duh goo yang just smiled at him, carefully cleaning his blood from her fingers. "You understand of course that the spice we contracted you to smuggle here was in fact a ruse to have you bring her to us, but you will still receive full payment for it."
Mal cursed, tried to stand, and fell against the alley wall. "Since when do you Bene Gesserit witches work with those Alliance bastards?"
"We don't. River was created as a weapon against us. Those who turned her into what she is wanted someone with our abilities but under their control. Trapped by the polarities of their world-view, they didn't realize how self-contradictory was this goal. We understand her, and we will take care of her."
"You don't want me." The voice came from a shadow that Mal would've sworn was empty a second ago. River walked into the moon-lighted alley, alternately looking at Mal, the witch, and the moons. She was carrying a small axe.
The Bene Gesserit grinned like the shit-selling bastard she was. "And what do we want, River Tam?"
"You want to play with my son on the sand." River rubbed her flat stomach. "Tame the worm and dam the waters."
Mal coughed a laugh from the ground. "Great."
River looked at Mal with fondness. "Not yet," she said. Then she turned toward the Bene Gesserit. "He says your music is boring."
River adjusted her grip on the axe. The Bene Gesserit seemed to produce a knife from thin air.
Mal lost consciousness right then.
Hours later he found himself slowly recovering in Serenity's infirmary, surrounded by, well, everybody. Maybe they had a betting pool about whether he'd pull off or not.
"River saved your life, Captain. Again." Simon sounded faintly surprised. "I cannot fathom why she feels the need."
"Silly brother," she said, popping her head from behind him. "He will be a good father."