(River, Jayne. Tag to "Ariel".)

Spray of Red

The knife came away with a spray of red. A very slight spray, but a spray it was. Blood red, on shiny, but stained metal.

River felt weird. Wrong. She looked down at the knife and wondered why it was there.

Nothing came to her but the words, "He looks better in red."

She didn't know where the words came from, but they felt true. They felt like they were her words. Hers.

Like the blood was his. Jayne's.

And then she saw Jayne, really saw him, and her mind broke. The knife slipped from her grasp. Her knees buckled.