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In the cockpit, Wash extemporizes, "Inara, nice to see her again." Zoe looks at Mal, cowboyed up. "So, trap?" They have a whole Captain/First Mate conversation in twin language that weirds out everybody else. Kaylee especially, because this is clearly fate and romance happening, is confused. Zoe and Mal agree that they're going in, and Wash is like, "Yeah, but, remember the part where it's a trap?" Mal shrugs. "If that's the case, then Inara's already caught in it. She wouldn't set us up willing. Might be we got a shot at seeing who's turning these wheels. We go in." Kaylee protests that maybe Inara just wants to see him. "But how can you be sure Inara don't just wanna see you? Sometimes people have feelings. I'm referring here to people." His face is firm. "You all were watching, I take it." They all sheepishly assent. "Did you see us fight?" They did not. "Trap." One of the outtakes involved him screaming "TRAP!" at the top of his lungs, disgusted at the ongoing ignorance of his most trusted allies, and then turning swiftly on his heel, and that would have been funny too.
We're coming in low over the Training House, nobody on radar. Mal hands over command to Mal, and cracks wise: "Remember. If anything happens to me or if you don't hear from me within the hour you take this ship and you come and you rescue me." Zoe smiles, fake-affronted: "What? Risk my ship?" He takes off. "I mean it. It's cold out there. And I don't wanna get left." When you're heading into a situation where the actual trained assassin without an identity is the less scary of the factors, the safety of Serenity is important.
Down in the Training House, Mal has donned a ridiculous silky robe, bulky as whatever the Skeksis wore, and makes fun of Inara's prayer as a way of breaking the ice. "Dear Buddha, please bring me a pony, and a plastic rocket, and..." She jumps up, surprised out of her fear and reverie. "What are you doing here?" He shrugs. "You invited me?" She chides him, sexy as ever: "I never thought for a second you'd be stupid enough to come." "Well," he grins, "that makes you kind of a tease, doesn't it?" She gets up, all fussy and worried as usual. "You knew my invitation wasn't on the level." He explains that obvious that equals trouble, and she blows that right off. "I'm fine. I'm giddy." He shakes his head. "For a woman schooled in telling a man what he wants to hear, you ain't much of a liar." She responds, really afraid this time, scared into honesty, "Mal, you cannot handle this man." The Operative enters, politely. "I have to say, Captain -- I'm impressed that you would come for her yourself. And that you would make it this far, in that outfit." He stands, still wearing the ridiculous tapestry. "I can be very graceful when I need to."