jebbypal: (plot bunnies)
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Originally posted to [livejournal.com profile] serenity_summer

Title: Entitlement
Author: [livejournal.com profile] jebbypal
Character: Rance Burgess, Belinda Burgess, Nandi
Rating: T-teen.
Disclaimer: Everything belongs to Joss.
Summary: Rance deserves a child.
Spoilers: Heart of Gold
1058. Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] poisontaster for the beta.

The doctor's pronouncement stuns him. It takes a second for him to even look at Belinda. Her reaction is much the same as his. Who would have thought that the day would come when there was something that he couldn't give her?

"You're certain?" he asks. "If we go to the Core, to another specialist?"

The doctor shakes his head. "I'm sorry, Mr. Burgess. I know that you and your wife had hoped, but it's not to be. There is no medical procedure that will aid you, Mrs. Burgess, in ever conceiving a child. I would like to give you both a referral to several excellent counselors. Rash actions after news of this magnitude shouldn't be made."

His very being aches as he takes in the loss on his wife's face. Really, she asks for so little, it hurts him to the core to not be able to give her this one thing. Unjust, that such a perfect woman will never get to nourish and protect new life. To protect his heir.

Their transport ride home is long and painful. Their hope has been extinguished and the future was in doubt. But once they enter their mansion, his wife's energy returns.

"Wipe that pity off your face, Rance. It doesn't become you. We'll have a child, we'll have a child. We're entitled to one," Belinda says.

Her continued belief in him is a balm. He takes her in his arms. "You're right, of course."




His days are filled with one pursuit alone, to have a child that they can raise together. Once he's home and surrounded once more by his power, Rance wonders how he could have ever doubted it. He recalls his favorite proverb, "God helps those who help themselves." Belinda will never conceive a child, but there is nothing stopping him.

Once he's regained his purpose, the only the left is to form a plan. Cheating on Belinda is distasteful and would be messy. Any mistress would see the fruit of his loins as a way to manipulate him. Rance won't be manipulated by anyone. Setting Belinda aside is also out of the question. They are husband and wife, for better and worse. This might be worse, but he'll see to it that it gets better soon.

Then again, there are plenty on his planet that are offensive in the eyes of God. More than one den of iniquity ekes out a meager living on those with less self control than him. He discourages whoring among his men. Conceiving a heir with a whore also carries risks to the child. It's bad enough that Belinda has been cursed with a barren womb, he won't torture her with the prospect of damaged goods.

Even among those who sell themselves, there can be found a higher class of individual. One of his friends reminds him of the Heart of Gold. The man is upset that he's been band from the establishment by the house madam over a small amount of damage that he did to one of the whores.

"Tell me about this woman," Rance orders.

"Nandi. She took over for Big Red a while back. Come to think of it, I don't know what happened to Red exactly," the man says. Rance waves him on when the boy's attention wanders. "Oh, right. Well, she's got some strange notions that her lot have rights. That we're to treat her employees with respect. What a load of crap, right?"

Rance nods and considers. He's never had to buy sex before. He courted his wife properly, considered the match to be beneficial. In a perfect world, he wouldn't have to. The 'Verse isn't perfect though, otherwise Belinda would be able to carry his child. He might not get his heir the way he wants, but Rance is entitled to a child of his own blood. And if God is generous, it will be a son.

Rance might just have to pay the Heart of Gold a visit.




"Well, if it ain't Rance Burgess. Didn't really think that you trucked with our lot," the woman says as she meets him at the door. She's a tad older than the rest and has an air of authority, but she's still a beauty.

"Miss Nandi, I presume," Rance says with a bow. At her nod, he continues. "It's true, I don't generally approve of my men visiting establishments like yours. But merely out of a concern for their families, I assure you. I hate to see men waste money that should be going to better their children."

Nandi continues to block his entrance into her establishment. "That so. I heard it's been two months since your wife left you. My condolences."

He bristles at her insinuation. "You're mistaken. She's been called away to care for her younger sister. A child-birthing gone wrong and the poor girl is beside herself. But it's true, I've been lonely."

Nandi's eyes squint and her mouth curls up in a smirk, but she backs away from the door. "Loneliness we understand. Course, I got rules too. One of mine says stop or doesn't agree with something, you respect their wishes. Dong ma?"

"Perfectly," Rance replies.




After that, it's simply a matter of performing his duty. Petaline is the most appealing of the girls and of the cleanest stock from what he can tell. She's also incredibly easy to impress. A few gifts here and there, giving her all of his business, it doesn't take long.

Of course, for his plan to work, he has to have someone on the inside. His second-in-command, Paul, is only too eager to take care of that matter for him. It takes three months, but soon his plan comes to fruition.

"Just saw Chari, boss. Your girl missed last month and this month. Morning sickness has come too," Paul reports.

Finally. It's been a trial, these past few months. Rance can't wait until Belinda arrives home. They'll still need to consult with the doc to see when the safest time for the paternity test is. Rance doesn't plan on raising another man's child, after all.

"Good work, Paul. Be sure she keeps a close eye on my Petaline. I won't have that whore doing anything to my child," Rance orders as he goes to give his wife the good news.




A/N: I still have a bunny that I'm trying to catch. So hopefully I'll be able to post something a little more lighthearted before Monday.

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August 2017

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