Bed And Breakfast
by Bastet

He was her first client in a long time, and she worried that he'd notice.

Something changed in her a few months ago, starting when she noticed Kaylee watching her carefully, like she was working out some confusing engine mechanics. "What are you staring at?" Inara had laughed.

"You," said Kaylee, and kissed her. Just moved in next to her skin, smiling, being gentle. She asked, "Do you like this?" and Inara did, because Kaylee really wanted to know.

She liked that Kaylee was curious and honest; she liked being treated like something special. She liked being able to laugh in bed without offending anyone, and she liked that Kaylee would laugh with her, breathless in her ear.

She liked lying in someone's arms and knowing they weren't hearing a clock ticking away the dollars in their heads. She liked being able to say that she wasn't in the mood, which she did once or twice for the novelty even if it wasn't true. Because most of all, she liked Kaylee, with her wickedly sweet smile and her long lashes and her sense of humor.

That was the change, that was what she thought Branch would notice when she went to his bed. The crew had noticed: she had a glow, Mal said. She looked like she was gettin' some, Jayne said. She looked happy, Book said, congratulations.

(Mal wasn't jealous, like she'd started out hoping. Mal didn't want her, and if he did, he hid it even from himself. A mystery, yes, but after locking snugly against Kaylee as they went to sleep together for the third time she started to think that a mystery wasn't really what she was after.)

Of course, Branch hadn't known her before Kaylee and he probably would never know her again, in the Biblical sense or in any other. He was nice enough.

"You're beautiful," he said, almost smoothly, and watched her nervously until she told him to touch her. Then he did, clumsy hands all over her, and he didn't so much take as accept something she was perfectly willing to give, something she'd given a hundred times. She liked it, that was her job, but she couldn't help thinking that Kaylee would've spent longer on her breasts, not just a cursory fumble but sucking and biting and savoring the way she did when she ate strawberries.

She moaned appreciatively, though, and played out every ceremony with the mystery she had been taught at the Academy. Being an enigma was part of her job, too. He didn't know her last name, he didn't know that all Companions were trained to behave exactly as she did, and he didn't know her fear: that this particular occupation was something that would make Kaylee upset, jealous.

He never knew, and she wondered as she brought her shuttle back home to Serenity if he would have cared.

While Inara was washing him off her skin, Kaylee bounced into the shuttle, still glad to see her. Quick hands wove through her curls--making them wilder than usual, but she didn't mind--and Kaylee knelt behind her, nipping at her neck until Inara turned to kiss her in greeting.

It awoke slowly, the feeling that Branch had left her with. Just Kaylee's scent, somehow dirty and clean at the same time, helped. Kaylee's tongue, exploring her mouth carefully but without force, and Kaylee's fingers stroking her nipple into a point, made her feel split open with heat and hunger.

She turned further and filled her hands with Kaylee's hips, edging her closer, and stopped suddenly as Kaylee lifted the damp towel to her face and sponged off her lipstick and rouge.

"You look better without this junk all over ya," she said, and Inara leaned back and pulled Kaylee with her and couldn't stop smiling. Kaylee settled over her, strong arms and thighs holding her up so that she could lick the last traces of perfume from Inara's collarbone, while Inara unbuttoned the top of her jumper, taking advantage of the ship's gravity and catching one of Kaylee's breasts when it swayed down into her hand. She teased the tip, rolling it until she felt resistance and then starting on the other one.

"Wait," Kaylee said suddenly, and Inara's heart stumbled in fear as she stood. "Need to get naked," she explained, stripping out of the rest of her clothes.

"What do you want to do?" Inara asked, knowing she sounded awkward and nervous. Kaylee had stopped: she might not start again. It had been a long time since she'd felt that way, since before the teacher at the Academy had given her things to say, ways to put her clients at ease and herself along with them.

Kaylee knelt between her thighs, looking thoughtful, of all things. Leaning down, pulling her hair back, she dove right in so that Inara's head tipped back and her hips jerked up and she couldn't see any more.

Kaylee was matter-of-fact: no teasing, once she knew Inara was ready. She dipped her tongue into Inara slowly, steadily, and Inara forgot who had been there a few hours before. The splitting was still there--she spread her thighs further apart--and then Kaylee slipped her arm around to rock two fingers down against the hard nub that made her go completely wild, she could hear herself keening and crying and her hips kept driving her down on Kaylee's tongue. Enough that she felt almost full of her, taken by her, and she came when an especially hard nudge from the fingers sent her over the edge, gasping Kaylee's name.

The aftershocks were still quivering through Inara when Kaylee flopped down on one shoulder beside her. Inara watched as she licked her lips, smiling smugly, and wondered if she could die from feeling too good. Because Kaylee wasn't upset with her, still wanted her, still thought she was beautiful.

"You really don't mind," she said when she'd gotten her breath back.

"Mind what?" Kaylee asked, looking right into her eyes.

"Branch. My client. You don't job." It sounded insane, and she wondered if she should have said it out loud.

Kaylee's brow furrowed in confusion. "Well, you'd rather be with me, wouldn't ya?"

"Oh, yes," Inara found herself saying in a breathlessly stupid tone that she had never used accidentally before. Usually it was followed by things like "you're the best I've ever had" and "I want you so badly" but Kaylee didn't need to hear that. She already knew.

"Then what's to mind?" Kaylee said stubbornly, throwing a possessive arm around Inara. "But if any of those creeps hurt you, I'll get River to shoot their privates right off. Promise." Inara couldn't stop an unladylike giggle, and Kaylee never tried to stop these things at all.

"She' least do better than Mal at defending my honor," Inara breathed through her laughter, pulling Kaylee on top of her.

"Goes without sayin'," Kaylee grinned, "River's got better focus. And better aim." Inara put her hands on Kaylee's back, angling her down to suck her left breast, leaving them there to feel the sudden arch of Kaylee's body. "Ooooh, 'Nara..."

I love you, she thought suddenly, and she wasn't worried, or ashamed for thinking it. She was happy, which wasn't very dramatic, certainly, but it had its appeal just the same.


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