1. Pick a character, pairing, or fandom you like.
2. Turn on your music player and put it on random/shuffle.
3. Write a drabble related to each song that plays. You only have the time frame of the song to finish the drabble; you start when the song starts, and stop when it’s over. No lingering afterwards!
4. Do ten of these, then post them.
Confessions: A couple of times I had to take a bit longer than the song to finish my thought, otherwise the story wouldn’t make sense. I also edited afterwards for clarity and to add the Chinese in where I thought I needed it. And I skipped songs that didn’t fit the fandom at all or which were in foreign languages.
I chose Firefly as my fandom. Various characters, POVs and eras. Spoilers for the movie. Also, my shuffle is apparently a Carbon Leaf fan.
Song: Learn to Fly, Carbon Leaf [Lyrics]
Mal Reynolds settled his hands over the controls of his new ship. Time for a test drive. He’d flown before, of course, but this was different. This was his ship. This wasn’t the army. This wasn’t a war. This wasn’t a responsibility thrust on him because someone higher up had died. This was all his.
“Sir?” Zoe asked, from the co-pilot’s seat.
“Just gimme a sec,” Mal said.
He closed his eyes for moment. Whenever he closed his eyes these days, unwanted images turned up. War, death, destruction, starvation. He looked them in the face this time. He opened his eyes and flipped the switches. He lifted off, away from the war, and flew into his new life.
Song: Older Chests, Damien Rice [Lyrics]
Book sat on the stairs of the catwalk, watching the game the crew was playing. His joints were aching today, he insisted. The Mechanic tried to rally him on, but he was firm in his refusal. He watched her smiling face as she chased after the young captain.
Book supposed he wasn’t that young, but everyone was young to him these days. The Captain took the ball from the Pilot and threw it high over the Mechanic’s head. He was smiling too. Book rarely saw him do that, not in so unguarded a way.
The Pilot chased after the ball, pulling a ridiculous face at the Mechanic as he passed her. He was sharp, Book had decided. Saw more than he spoke about. He was content to fly most of the time, but Book wouldn’t be surprised at what might happen if he was pressed.
The Second caught the ball and stoically tossed it to the Thug. She played to win, though he knew she’d throw the game in an instant if she thought it would help someone.
The Thug caught it and headed to the net. Book supposed it wasn’t fair to call him a thug. His obvious care in how he moved around the Mechanic showed a softer side.
The ball went into the hoop and Book smiled as the crew cheered.
Song: Wanderin’ Around, Carbon Leaf [Lyrics]
“You’re twitching,” Inara said.
Mal clasped his hands together to prevent his fingers from dancing around. “Am not.”
“You always get like this when we stay very long in one place,” she said. “Like you can’t sit still. Like a child.”
Mal scowled at her. He hated how she always knew things about everyone. He shrugged her theory away and tapped his fingers on the bars of the catwalk. The dust from the planet floated into the open cargo hold. He was waiting for Kaylee and Jayne to return from a part-finding expedition. The negotiating wasn’t going well and Mal thought Jayne might be a little more persuasive.
“Do we need to be somewhere?” Inara asked.
He shrugged again. “There’s always more sky.”
Song: Grey Sky Eyes, Carbon Leaf [Lyrics]
Mal watched River as she piloted the ship peacefully along. He was always amazed by how she controlled it. She rarely seemed in control of herself, how did she manage to control something so much bigger?
“I don’t have buttons,” she said.
He’d grown used to these sorts of conversations – ones that didn’t involve him speaking very often. “Wish you did, sometimes.”
“I know,” she said. “Me too.”
She looked over to him, looking him in the eyes. It always unnerved him when she did that. You never look crazies in the eyes. Hers were so troubled too, even when she seemed calm. She had veils up to keep you away from what she was really thinking. Unfair, really, considering how she always knew what he was thinking.
She smiled at him. “I know all of yours.”
Song: In the Bleak Mid-Winter, Sarah MacLachlan [Lyrics]
The little fire was barely enough to keep anyone warm, let alone the five soldiers gathered around it. No one minded, though. Christmas Eve, even in the middle of the war, meant peace. The Browncoats and Alliance called truce. Mal blew on his hands to try and encouraged them to warm up. Roane Kane had lost two of his fingers from frostbite. Across the fire, he was still smiling and joking, like always.
Zoe nudged Mal’s shoulder. She tossed a package into his lap. It was wrapped in scraps of cloth, ripped from some worn piece of clothing. Mal fumbled to untie it. Inside were a pair of Alliance issue gloves. Mal gave her a dark look, but she lifted her hands to show a matching pair of her own. He nodded and nudged her back, then put his own on.
Song: These Days, Chantal Kreviasuk [Lyrics]
Kaylee was crying. Kaylee never cried. Not like this, anyway. This type of full out sobbing. Jayne looked around for someone to interfere, to offer her some comfort. There didn’t seem to be anyone around. He awkwardly plunked himself down and wrapped his arm around her shoulders.
“Where’s yer beau?” he demanded. Shouldn’t Simon be dealing with this?
“Dunno,” she said, between sobs. “S’Wash’s birthday today, y’know?”
“I know,” Jayne admitted. “He ain’t gonna be sad we’re not celebratin’, though.”
Kaylee sobbed harder and Jayne realized that wasn’t comforting to her. He looked around again for help.
“I got him a present, ‘fore he died,” Kaylee explained. “But I can’t give it to him.”
Jayne nodded, hoping that was the best route. “Maybe ya could give it to the baby, when it’s born.”
Kaylee looked up at him and smiled a little. “That’s a good idea.”
He made a face. “Ya don’t gotta look so s’prised.”
Song: The Boxer, Carbon Leaf [Lyrics]
Wash paced the cockpit. The weather was ominously nice, considering the danger they were in. Zoe being at the forefront of it. He’d been up all night already, hoping someone would radio back to let him know things were going alright. He had since decided they hadn’t and had stationed himself in the cockpit to be ready for a quick exit.
He knew she could take care of herself. She could take care of herself, him, and a small country if needed. That wasn’t the problem. The problem was that he had no way to help her. He was useless in a fight. He was a runner – that’s why he flew the ship.
The radio crackled. “’Lo?”
“I’m here, I’m here,” Wash said, sounding more desperate than he would have liked.
“We’re okay, comin’ back,” Zoe said.
“Good,” Wash said, calmly.
The radio turned off. He collapsed in the pilot’s chair.
Song: This is your life, Switchfoot [Lyrics]
Simon sighed and looked around the small infirmary on Serenity. It was hardly what he was used to. This was frontier sort of medicine. He was trained to work in ideal conditions, with clean instruments and machines to tell him what was wrong on the inside of the patient. He wasn’t a frontier doctor.
He opened his medical bag and took out his instruments, laying them out in case he needed them. He looked through the cupboards to see what they had on hand. Some painkillers, a little antibiotics and a few bandages. Nothing seemed to have any order to it. He began to organize them.
“Doc!” the Captain barked.
Simon turned around. He barely had time to move out of the way before the Captain and Jayne brought in an unconscious Zoe. She was bleeding heavily.
He went to work.
Song: Golden Slumbers, Ben Folds Five [Lyrics]
Simon slumped against the wall in River’s room. She was finally asleep. It had taken hours, tonight. She was in a full out psychotic break. It was times like this that made him realize how much she had changed.
He wished there was a way to go back.
Song: Something Beautiful, Jars of Clay [Lyrics]
Kaylee walked into the mess, looking for a midnight snack. Or a midday snack, it was hard to tell in space what time it was. She was covered in grease from the engine. Mal was sitting at the table, a mug in front of him.
“Hey Cap’n,” she greeted him.
He looked over to her, but didn’t really see her. She noticed his red eyes and suspected there was something stronger in the mug than just tea. He blinked at her and then looked back down at the table.
“Nightmares?” she asked.
She went up behind his chair and wrapped her arms around his neck, resting her head against the back of his. He grasped one of her forearms, briefly.
“I still think yer shiny,” she told him.
He smiled. “Thanks, mei-mei.”