Reynolds points to someone standing on the metal grid balcony above their heads. "That's Zoe; give her your fare," he says. "You get your own bunk and three meals a day; we eat together in the galley."
"Mal!" A voice yells, and Reynolds takes off down the hall.
Ryan's trying to get his bearings, but so far it's like he's standing in an airborne warehouse, crates pushed up against the walls and the vibration of a big-ass engine beneath his feet.
He climbs the stairs slowly, discreetly burrowing into his apron for the bills tucked away during breakfast. Zoe's a head taller than him. Ryan starts with her boots and follows two miles of legs before running into the roadblock of her eyes: suspicious, grim, not in the mood for his bullshit.
He grins at her anyway, cocky, licks his lips. "How much?"
Her eyebrow quirks. "Destination?"
Reynolds saves him from answering by grabbing Ryan's wrist and hauling him back down the stairs. There's a small observation window on the door of the – of the airlock – Christ, he's in an honest-to-god motherfucking unidentified flying object, and they're looking down on the sprawl of Oswald, brown stone buildings and barbed wire fences.
"You said... correctional facility?" Reynolds glares.
"Yeah," Ryan confirms. He wants to protest that he's innocent, he was framed, anything to keep out, stay out.
"It looks like a prisoner of war camp," Reynolds says softly, and Ryan catches the tail end of a hollow look, a glint in the Captain's eyes.
"Yeah," Ryan says, seizing the moment. "That's what it is. I was on the wrong team." It's not entirely false, it's just not entirely true, either.
Reynolds narrows his eyes, sizing him up, and Ryan gives pathetic his best shot.
"Okay," Reynolds says, finally. "We all got jobs on this ship, dong ma? You'll have one, too."
They shake hands. Ryan swallows thickly, and he knows Reynolds caught it.
"Kaylee?" Reynolds hollers, striding off. "We're ready to go!"
Ryan looks out the window. He's not leaving anything behind. One blink, and Oz is gone.