jebbypal: leaf on the wind (ff leaf on wind)
[personal profile] jebbypal
title Guild Law
author [personal profile] jebbypal
rating everyone
summary Guild law makes Inara's shuttle sacrosanct and protects her clients from harm
author notes Written for my own promptathon for fleshlycherry's prompt of Inara and the Operative, pre-series.

Gently, Inara pulled away from the client. She put a finger to the boy’s lips before he could issue a sound of complaint. Inside the shuttle (now gleaming on the inside just as much as it still looked drab and worn on the outside), all was quiet. But something in the air, a charge almost, had changed.

“Get dressed,” she ordered as she started to put her own sari to rights. “No questions. Your father? You said he was away.”

“Business on the Rim. Why?”

“Someone just landed.” It’s then that she recognizes the charge she feels. One of the first modifications she’d had Kaylee make to her shuttle was silence the proximity alarm, at least for all intents and purposes. The low-level sound it makes now is imperceptible to all except those with the training to hear. Not quite on the level of a dog whistle, but close enough that most people would never even register the sound.

With the flick of a switch, Inara pulls up the feed from the exterior cameras. The angles are designed more for safe landing rather than security, but the images they convey are enough. “Whoever it is, I don’t think its your father. Would any of his business partners show up armed?” She leaves unspoken the fact that a small squad of armed men are present.

“Fly us out of here,” the client begs. Fear has changed the smell of his sweat into a sickly stench.

“We’d never reach atmo.” Mentally, Inara cringes when she registers Mal’s course slang in her voice. Sloppy. She’s already getting sloppy. “I’ve been engaged to make you happy, not to commit suicide.” It’s then that the shuttle hatch opens. A quick override. Those outside are either professionals, or they have their own Kaylee.

As soon as she sees the man in the doorway, professional is the only thing that Inara registers. His clothes do not match any uniform that she’s aware of, but his manner is unmistakeable.

“You know what I am,” Inara says.

The man’s head bows imperceptibly. “And I have no desire to desecrate your –“ he pauses as he looks around, searching for the word, “sanctum with violence. But the boy comes with me.”

“He’s my client. Guild law makes this place sacrosanct and him safe from all that would harm him.”

For the first time, he smiles. “Guild law, indeed. I’m afraid it doesn’t extend quite this far. Allow me to take the boy though, and I promise you to honor guild law in that I won’t harm you. Or look to hard for you or where you come from once I’ve finished my assignment.”

Mal and the crew. Somehow, Inara knows that the man in front of her already has all the information he needs to find her. And ruin Serenity’s crew. A soft ding prevents Inara from having to completely betray everything she’s been trained to honor. “Sven, truly, our time together has passed too quickly,” Inara says before turning away.

As she sits in the pilot seat, Inara tries not to hear the brief struggle behind her. As soon as the shuttle door closes, she starts the ignition sequence. Guild law, indeed.


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August 2017

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