Part 8

"And here we are." The doors of the blue box flung open, just as I led the crew down into the cargo bay, and two gentlemen stepped out.

"Sorry, Doctor, but this isn't the Icarus. This isn't my ship."

"No, you're right, it's not. Sorry about that. But it is a ship. I think. Hey you, up there! Is this a ship?"

Captain Mal tried to barge past me, but I put a hand on his chest and stopped him cold. He looked down at my hand, then back up to my face, and then repeated it again, before trying to surge forward. I put the index finger from my other hand on his lips, and said, quite fiercely, "No."

Inara would have been proud.

"Yes, it's a ship, and no, it's not the Icarus."

"You know the Icarus," asked the gentleman not wearing a bow-tie.

"Well, I know of the Icarus." I continued down the stairs to the and Mal tried to continue with me, but I glared at him. He froze, his mind clicking and stalling, trying to shift gears and figure out what was going on. "Sit. Stay."

He glared back, looking all the more bewildered, but stopped.

"It's complicated."

The strapping fellow with the bowtie stepped around his friend, muttering, "Yes, it usually is," before speaking up in a tone that indicated he wasn't fully aware he'd spoken the previous line aloud. "I'm sorry, who are you?"

"This is Serenity, a Firefly class 03-K64 transport spaceship; behind me, you see the crew, with illustrious Captain Malcolm Reynolds behaving like a good little puppy dog, and I... don't belong here."

He pulled a device out of his jacket pocket and waved it at me, it's light sputtering when pointed in my direction. "No, you most certainly do not," he murmured again, still attractively unaware. "You still haven't said who you are."

"You're right, I haven't." I snagged one of his suspenders as he circled me, and pulled him in closer, examining him myself. "But though I would love to play doctor with you and see where things lead, why don't you tell everyone what you've just realized."

"What I've just realized?" He stepped back, away from me, and the suspender snapped, causing him to wince beautifully. I wanted to do it again.

"About where I'm from."

"About where you're... from?"

"Come on, now Doctor, haven't you figured it out by now? Or are you still telling your little screwdriver there that it's not possible?"

"How did you... It says.. No, certainly not, quite impossible."

I sighed. "Come on, River wouldn't hesitate."

"How do you... Oh, fine. You're from the other side of the Fourth Wall, whatever that means. I've never heard of anywhere called Fourth Wall, so it couldn't possibly exist--"

"Are you omnipotent too now?"

"I'm a Timelord, I'll have you know."

"I do. Traveling hither and yon in your little Tardis. Mummy and daddy must be proud. I know it's hard, but you can stop treating me like a muggle."

"Like a what?"

"Now hold on here, just a minute." The gears finally engaged, and Mal finished descending to the cargo bay floor. "What makes you passenger think he can treat this captain like a..." He paused, and turned back to he crew, seeking support and prompting.

"Little puppy," Jayne supplied, eagerly.

"Like a little puppy!? And you! Who are you and what are you doing on my ship? Nice suspenders, by the way."

The Doctor stroked his own absently. "Why thank you."

"Boys, boys." I held up my hands, and shot a sharp look at Arno before he too could open his mouth and weigh in with his own problems. "As much as I'd love for all three of us to unzip and compare sizes, this isn't the time or the place. Let's all just have a nice little sit down, we'll get all sorted, and maybe finish getting something in our bellies while we do. I'm sure the Doctor would be happy to provide some fresh victuals from his innumerous stocks as a peace offering to supplement my own. Maybe even some apples," I glanced at him, and he nodded, "to whet our appetites. Afterward, if you don't like what he has to say, then you can try to toss him out the airlock. What say you?"

The Doctor looked a little green at the last part, equally as nauseas as Jayne looked eager, but nodded. The Captain nodded too.

I draped my arms over both of their shoulders, and we awkwardly marched three-wide to the kitchen.

The End

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