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FF/SPN: Eurydice Settlement

I'm posting this as an experiment, more or less. I'm kind of chipping away at this thing, which has developed a kind of plot and yet isn't a single story. So I have three parts of varying lengths done, and am going ahead with the first of them here, although it's not quite a whole story. It's John/Zoe, or it will be soon enough.

Eurydice Settlement
by Vanzetti


Late nights on these dusty worlds, thin air burning in her lungs, the dry taste of it in the back of her throat. Zoe's seen Mal swallow the speech about walking out alone; he knows she can take care of herself, and she's always back at Serenity by dawn. She's careful, and Mal may not understand it but he lets her go. She's pulled him out of enough fights in their time, nights when all he wanted was to find someone to hurt. And anyway, she's not exactly looking for violence, just not trying hard to avoid it.

She lengthens her strides past a line of shops, then a cluster of shacks on the edge of the settlement, dogs dozing in the road and peeling shutters gaping at the windows. There's a small mud-brick chapel and the open space of the burying ground beyond it, and the glow of a lantern casting long shadows where a man's digging. Strange, she thinks, to dig a grave this late, but who knows why settlers do what they do. She's on her way past when the shadows blur and the man goes sprawling in the dirt like something slammed into him; the night air carries his curses across the burying ground to her. Like something hit him, but there's nothing there -- and then there is, the echo of a flash, a form of pale light -- and then it's gone. By then Zoe's most of the way to the graveside, where the man's pulling himself along the ground to his shotgun as the flickering shape drags him back toward the open grave. Her revolver's in her hand, and she shoots at it herself. The man raises his head and barks, "Use the shotgun," and as the white thing pulls at him she leaps forward, grabs it from the ground and fires.

There's an unholy shriek and the thing flickers out; the man twists around at the edge of the grave, strikes a light and tosses it in. Flames roar up, and Zoe takes a step backward. What the hell?, she thinks. Mal'd told ghost stories late at night on the front lines, when the new recruits couldn't sleep through the shelling, but she'd reckoned that they were just stories.

The man hauls himself to his feet; with the fire at his back he's not much more than a dark shape himself, hulking and inhuman. A couple slow steps to the side, though, and the lantern casts enough light on him for her to see dark hair, dark eyes in a tired face. Just a man, after all. "Not bad," he says, a low, worn voice. She hefts the shotgun and tosses it to him; he catches it and stands there watching her, not quite relaxed. Another soldier, she reckons; she'd know that stance anywhere.

Whatever happened here, it's over now. Zoe nods at the man and goes on her way. If she'd wanted talk, she could have stayed on Serenity.

* * *

Next afternoon she's in the little port, heading back from town with supplies, when Kaylee hails her over. Zoe turns to look and there he is, not a settler after all, sitting out in front of a ship, a tarp covered with engine parts spread out before him. Kaylee's sitting to one side, picking over them with grease-stained fingers. "Zoe," she calls out again. "This here's John Winchester. He thinks he's got a part or two we could use to keep the alternator turning over." She holds something up, her attention already back on the man. 'You reckon if we drilled a couple holes, here and here, this might do the trick."

John Winchester's looking up at her. "Ma'am," he says. There's a glint of something in his eyes, but then he turns back to Kaylee. "Maybe; what about this, instead?"

Zoe settles down across from him, because if they don't watch out Kaylee will spend her shares on keeping Serenity running, even when Mal sets aside credit for that purpose. Zoe don't know much about engines, so she lets the sound of their talk wash over her, the flow of Kaylee's quick chatter interrupted now and again by a low rumble from Winchester. Same with their hands, Kaylee's darting here and there over the parts, picking them up, turning them over, putting them down. Winchester's hands are like his voice, deliberate and slow. Big hands, a scar here and there, a wide gold band around his left-hand ring finger.

Within an hour, Kaylee's got a box full of bits of metal. "What do we owe you?" Zoe asks as they stand.

"No charge," Winchester says. Kaylee looks ready to protest, and he adds, "Don't have a use for those parts." Then he meets Zoe's eyes and smiles, and it's like the first taste of spring water, coming planetside after a long run. "Call it even?"

Man's life for a box of spare parts ain't the kind of trade Zoe likes, even if life is cheap out here. "It's a start," she says. "Let's go, Kaylee. Captain'll be wondering where we got to."

* * *

That night she lets Mal talk her into going out with the crew, or really, with him and Jayne, so she can see why he might want company. Only two bars in the settlement, which means it's not really coincidence when she sees John Winchester sitting alone at a table, paging through some kind of book like a shepherd.

He sees her too, was probably watching the door for trouble like any sane person in a place like this, but she can feel his gaze following her all the way to the bar; when they have their round she tells Mal that she'll be back and takes her glass over to Winchester's table. He closes the book -- not a bible, some loose-leaf set of notes -- and gestures for her to have a seat. His eyes flick to the bar, where Mal's probably glowering at him.

He waits for her to speak. She takes the opportunity to look him over. Hasn't shaved in a day or so, and there's gray in the stubble; it gives his face a grim cast. There aren't many men who could sit in a place like this reading with no trouble; she bets that Winchester'd repay any trouble with interest.

"Dangerous business last night," Zoe says finally.

There's a twist to his mouth that might be a smile. "Ghosts don't always care to be laid to rest."

That's what it was, then. "You make a habit of that?"

"Keeps me busy," he says. "You don't mind me saying, you're taking this in stride."

"A fight's a fight," she says. "Ain't it?"

He raises his glass to her and drinks. "True enough." There's something speculative in his look. "You're not planning to take it up?"

"Got enough business of my own. I just wanted..." Well, come to think of it, she wasn't entirely sure what she did want. "Wanted to know, I guess."

"Now you know," he says. He doesn't say, so stop wasting my time, but he might as well. And Zoe don't take kindly to that, seeing as she shot a ghost for him just the night before. Before she can think of all the good reasons not to, she rises up and leans across the table. He tenses but he's not ready for what she's about to do, one hand at the side of his head tilting it up for her to kiss, long and deep and halfway through she realizes that it's the first time she's kissed a man since Wash, but damned if she'll let John Winchester guess that. When she lets him go he takes a deep, unsteady breath. Not so in control now, she thinks. Good. Now she can go back to Mal and Jayne.

End


Next: Caieta Port

Comments

Oh, Zoe. This so very much how it would happen, and the engine parts, yes.

*loves*

I can't wait to see the rest of it.

I may end up sending you a longish section to look over, if you'd be willing -- part three has more mood swings than me with PMS, if you know what I mean, and I'd appreciate a second opinion.
Very nice. Not a combo I would have thought of, but Winchesters are cowboys and so they work with space cowboys, too.

I hope there's more.
Not a combo I would have thought of, but Winchesters are cowboys and so they work with space cowboys, too.

Yes, that's it exactly. One can just do a transposition, and it works perfectly well. (And of course if you feel like it you can argue demonic influence re: Blue Sun, but that might be needlessly complicated.)
Delicious. Weary hunter John fits in perfectly with these folk on the raggedy edge. And especially with Zoe, neither of them speaking more than necessary.

I like Man's life for a box of spare parts ain't the kind of trade Zoe likes, even if life is cheap out here. and Zoe taking a bit of the tar out of him with a kiss.

Can't wait to see what more comes of this.
And especially with Zoe, neither of them speaking more than necessary.

I think that when musesfool pointed out how hot it would be, I said something like "hot and laconic." Because neither of them are big talkers, unless they have something to say.
::gigggling:: Love Zoe taking that last kiss. Thanks!
Zoe is such a great character, really, although her point-of-view is hard for me.
They so needed to be in the same story. Thank you for posting this.
Isn't it fun? It will get more fun, I hope.
Oh, indeed.
See? Hot crossover pairings are awesome.
Oh my!
I thoguht at first, FF and SPN? How? and then...it fits nicely, smoothly, and Zoe is great, sensible and closed and strong, in her Zoe-way. Winchesters are Winchesters, and ghosts are gosts.
I'll look forward to the rest of this, and I'd love it if you would post it on papawinchester. :)
I'm so pleased that you like it! And once I have the second story up, I'll post a link to the first two pieces on papawinchester.

It really works. Firefly is one of the great crossover fandoms, and I think SPN will be as well.
Is this a WiP (because I don't do WiP's) or can it stand on its own? Because I sooo want to read it . . . Firefly/Supernatural? *pants in anticipation*
It's not a WIP; it's a stand-alone story which will have a few follow-ups. So this piece is complete, but it's also the first of a series of encounters between the two characters.

Does that help?
Excellent character voices, and an amazing melding of worlds. I can see these two together for now. But together for long, and nobody'd be buying the groceries or any of the daily things that need to happen, because neither of them would mention the necessity.
But together for long, and nobody'd be buying the groceries or any of the daily things that need to happen, because neither of them would mention the necessity.

I think each of them is practical enough to make sure that they didn't actually starve to death, but yes, there could certainly be some misunderstandings along the way.

Glad that the crossover worked for you!
Wow. John/Zoe? Makes perfect sense. Also, this is beautifully written.
It does work surprisingly well, doesn't it? Glad you liked it.
Oh, this is interesting. I saw John/Zoe and wondered for a second, but you are SO RIGHT. I particularly liked how she just rolled with the situation at the graveside, and how John tracked her down to pay her back, because those are both things that they would do, AND they illustrate traits that they have in common.

(... and this is the only FF icon I have, but I'm going with the idea that Wash would approve. ;) )
John is like the anti-Wash, which is why it works. At least, that's part of it. There's also the ineffable hotness, and the weird similarities between them.

Thanks so much!

I think Wash might approve.
*makes flaily hands at you*

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I *heart* this SOOOOOOO much. Awesome.
Aren't hot crossover pairings fun? I'm so pleased that you like this!
There aren't a lot of men that could follow Wash but...yeah, this works.

I think that because John and Wash are very different, at least in aspect, so that helps make this seem plausible.

I'm so glad you're enjoying this!

Fic: Eurydice Settlement

Excellent crossover.
I love the sense of the place and the fight.
Great Zoe-voice.

I don't actually watch Supernatural, but I've read enough to follow this. I love the way he's just there in this. The exchange between them is much more important than however he might have got there.

Re: Fic: Eurydice Settlement

I'm glad that this makes sense even without much knowledge of Supernatural (I suspect it's an easier read from a FF perspecitve than the other way around).

I'm glad that you liked the Zoe-voice, here; she's not the easiest character for me to write (which is naturally how I ended up writing a hole set of stories about here here).

Thanks for the feedback!
Oh beautifully told, the weary oh so serious manner, the little details, their voices...of to the next part i go now.
Thank you! I'm very glad that this first story got you to start reading the rest!
when the wolf comes home

June 2016

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