1. Ten Percent Rule
"I can't get this... It just won't..." Simon gave up, red-faced, and set the pickle jar on the counter. "Maybe if I get a washcloth and try to..."
Jayne walked into the room and noticed the jar. "Oooh, pickles!" Happily, he picked up the jar and twisted it open without difficulty and drew out the biggest pickle he could find.
Simon stared at him with an open mouth and Jayne smirked. "You forgot about the ten percent rule, Doc."
"Ten percent rule?"
"You gotta be ten percent smarter than the object you're working with."
"Oh ha ha."
2. Human Behavior
"What the hell's your problem?" Jayne gave River a disgruntled look. The girl was standing there clutching her stomach.
"There's movement in my stomach," she said, sounding alarmed. "It may have been the protein at dinner."
"Well, I feel okay," Jayne said with a shrug. He got up to grab a bag of crisps and brushed against her, making her gasp. "What now?"
"It's too hot in here." She pouted and folded her arms. "I must be quite ill to be in so much discomfort."
Jayne frowned at her for a second and then blinked in surprise before letting a smirk settle into place. "Genius, huh? Some genius can't even recognize when she's got herself a crush."
Chuckling, Jayne left the room but called over his shoulder. "You and that brother o' yours musta missed school the day they taught human emotions."
3. New Math?
"No, huh uh," Jayne said, stubbornly. "I'm due more than that, Mal!"
"Jayne, you get ten percent," Mal explained patiently. "This is what you're owed."
"Like hell it is! Do the math again, I'm worth more."
Mal pressed his lips together in a tight line. "Fine." He grabbed a piece of paper from River's sketchbook and one of her colored pencils and worked it out. "See? You get a... oh."
Jayne took a few extra bills from the pile. "You didn't carry the one, dumbass."
4. No Brainer
Jayne had been hearing crashing from next door all day and he wasn't going to stand for it another second. Nap time meant quiet time, gorramit.
Cursing, he climbed up out of his bunk. "Kaylee, what the hell are ya doin' in there? I swear to God you and the Doc better not be gettin' up to some porntastic go se I don't wanna know about!"
But what he found was Kaylee struggling with the wooden box her ma had carved for her as a wedding gift. Kaylee was glaring at it balefully as she blew strands of hair out of her eyes.
"It won't fit," she said petulantly and gestured to the bed.
Jayne rolled his eyes. "So why dontcha get some risers, raise the bed up so then it will fit?"
"Oh." Kaylee looked from the box to the bed. "Yeah, that'll work."
"Are ya done with the noise now? Can I sleep or are ya gonna start kickin' the walls next?"
"No, Jayne, I'm done. Sorry ta wake ya up."
"Well, ya should be."
Kaylee watched him go with a smile. "Yer a lot smarter than ya act sometimes, Jayne."
"Uncle Jayne?" Little Anna Tam stared at him with big, sorrowful eyes and Jayne carefully set his barbell back in place before sitting up.
"What's up, moppet?" he asked, toweling himself off.
"Nova says there's no such thing as Santa Claus," Anna's bottom lip started to wobble. "That's not true, is it?"
"Aww, c'mere." Jayne patted the seat next to him and the girl sat down, sniffling. "You betcher ass Santa's real."
"But Nova said-"
Jayne waved off the rest of her sentence. "That sister o' yours may be a genius like her daddy but I'm married to a bigger genius so that makes me smarter. And I say Santa's real."
"Really? That's what Jamey and Nettie said, too."
"Well, there's your proof, then. Three against one that Santa's real."
The little girl relaxed with a smile. "Will you help me put my stocking up?"
Jayne stood and held his hand out to his niece. "Yep. Otherwise, how's the fat man gonna get yer gifts to ya, huh?"
"You shouldn't call him fat; he might get mad."
"Nah, me 'n Claus go way back. He knows I'm just joshin'."
"You know Santa?"
"Know 'im? Hell, I used ta run with him long before he had all them elves and Mrs. Claus."
"I'll tell ya all about it sometime."
Anna smiled a little, knowing her uncle was just teasing her. "Shiny."