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Lutz At First Sight

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EXTRA! EXTRA!

Word on the street is Inara SERRA, two time champion and two time Olympic silver medalist, has cut ties with partner of ten years, Malcolm REYNOLDS.

Serra was spotted earlier this week being escorted by Olympic gold medalist and two time champion, Atherton WING.

The relationship of Reynolds and Serra has long been known for its volatility both on and off the ice, sparking many a debate between fans and peers alike. Their off-ice drama would come into play on-ice, said close friends of the pair, and their performances suffered for it. The inconsistency and over portrayals in their artistic representation has been known to cost them dearly in competitions such as the Championships and Four Worlders.

A source revealed exclusively to us that Serra is seeking to relaunch her career in a bid for gold, while Reynolds is eyeing retirement.

We here at Entertainment Weekly hope not! Office staff here at EW have long loved Malcolm Reynolds, our beloved Border World Boy who rose from the shadows to impress and wow at the tender age of sixteen.

Let’s take a look at some of their most exciting and fiery programs over the last ten years...

Xxxx

Prologue...

Static fuzzed up his large Cortex screen for a split second before it finally responded to sleep mode, and he stared at it for a time, far preferring that to the woman behind him.

“You weren’t supposed to find out like this. I swear .”

Mal turned slow, emotionless, and looked at Inara, seeing her well-manicured hands clasped together in front of her heart and face immaculate in make up. Right from the heavy false eyelashes down to the deep, almost cherrywood red lipstick that made her lips look fuller, more defined.

There were a pleading to her that he knew real well. Where she would widen her eyes just so seconds before she lowered her head. A perfect portrayal of a guilty child whose remorse were so mighty, there could be tears.

How like her to play the gorram victim, here.

"Mal..."

Betrayal was what he felt and it cut deep, sharp, and left him raw and bleeding inside as he stared at her, unable to comprehend quite what she was saying. He moved before she could lay her hand on his arm and ran his own through his hair, eyes on the ceiling and heart in his gorram boots.

He levelled her with an empty stare, his mind connecting dots that shouldn't exist. The perfect make up, professional manicure, expensive silk dress and sandals. She clear weren’t hooking up with no fellow who ain’t got much in the way of cashy money, so that left the one single man in skating who had more money than sense.

“Atherton?” He asked, casual as could be given the circumstances.

A hardness sparked in her eyes and those dark red lips thinned. "I won't lie to you, Mal."

Oh, but she had been lying, hadn't she? The only question he had was for how long. A month? Two, three? A year maybe? He didn't bother to ask since it wouldn't make a ounce of difference. Wouldn't change things.

His partner, on the ice and sometimes off it, were walking out on him over a disgusting piece of gou-shi like Wing, and for what? Because he was of the high society to which she aspired. He'd known that though, hadn't he? All these years, he'd seen this side of her and he'd let it slide, taking it as part of who she was, but deep down he'd known. Known that one day, some well moneyed dandy would dazzle her with a bit of flash and off she'd go without so much as a nevermind.

"... Call me pretentious, but there is some appeal in that..."

Yet even knowing it as he did, he'd hoped that they could at least see in their third Olympics. Give it their all. Why, then, if he'd known so well, did it feel like such a betrayal? Weren't like he'd been ignorant of her less than stellar traits.

"... I could belong..."

I trusted her.

"... And with the Olympics in..."

Now they were getting to the truth of things.

She thought good ol' Ath was her golden ticket, didn't she? Thought he was faulty one, the reason why they hadn't won gold. She'd made no secret of that, either. He was too this, too that, too the other. Didn't show enough emotion, didn't smile enough for the judges, too technical, and through it all, not once had she ever criticised herself. Sometimes it made skating with her akin to walking on eggshells, but to tell tale of that would make for an injured Inara Serra, wouldn't it? Ever the victim that she was.

"... I need that gold, Mal. Surely you of all people can understa..." Words came out on hurried desperation, but he cut her off, unable and unwilling to hear more of it.

Pain shot through Mal's jaw as he looked away from her. "Get out, Inara. Just get out."

"Mal, please. Let's not end it like this. We can still..."

He wanted to laugh right in her face.

They could still what? Still be friends? Still rut when she feel the need as to do that? If I ain't her partner, I sure as hell ain't gonna be her lil fuck toy for when good ol Ath can't get it up.

That's exactly what he'd been, weren't it? Inara Serra's fuck toy. The Border World Boy, the press had called him once upon a time, and that's what he’d been to her, weren’t it? Good enough when there weren’t none else to be had, and now she thought gold were more or less already in the palm of her hand.

"I can see we're not going to get anywhere here."

Mal shook his head and sucked a breath in through his teeth. "Get out." That was all he had to say to her. No more and no less. Well, except three more words. “Don’t come back.”

He refused to watch her leave, waited a good ten minutes before he reacted and picked up the nearest object he could find and slung it at the nearest wall.

The vase shattered on impact, pieces of painted ceramic littered the floor, but it wasn't enough to satisfy and something else filled his hand. Then something else and something else, only stopping when he ran out of fuel and found himself sitting on the floor in the middle of what were the broken remains of a glass figurine.

Gou-shi.

That glass figurine had been a gift from his ma and sent all the way from Shadow. All the way from home. Now it was the perfect replica of what his gorram life had turned into.

His head hit the back of the wall and Mal looked dazedly up at the ceiling. He maybe had two Olympic competitions left before age caught up with him, and the qualifiers for one right around the corner. Inara had been putting all her little ducks in a row with the full knowledge she was leaving him pretty much up the gorram creek.

Mal wondered how many knew about her thing with good ol Ath. Probably not many since neither Serra nor Wing were of the mind to hold up well to a scandal. Not that Wing were a stranger to scandal, of course, but it was mighty clear that hadn't been an issue for her.

He'd have to call Nandi and Petaline, that's if they didn't know already of course, and if Petaline knew, then so did his sponsor, Rance. Rance would be furious at him, at her, at the gorram 'verse, but what could be done?

Inara saw greener pastures elsewhere and that was that.

Jayne.

Jayne was always good for a booze up. He'd give the fellow a wave, say the magic words, then go out and drink until he couldn't see straight.

As for Serra?

Well, good rutting luck to her. Man like Ath? She were gonna need every bit of that she could scrape together.