Alternate Choices
By H.W.

Chapter 8

"B'Elanna," The Doctor sighed. He had been arguing with the Klingon for the last ten minutes and he was rapidly getting nowhere.

"Listen, Doc," B'Elanna said, while she moved off the bed, but she was smart enough to hold on to the bed to steady herself, "I'm driving myself crazy in here, I'm about to go out of my mind from all that lying around. As you could see, I can sit, and as you can see now, I can stand. So why don't you let me go out there and be amongst people?"

"Because you are still weak," The Doctor stated... again, "Yes, you have enough energy to stand, but if I let you run around already, you'll use up all your energy and it will take much longer for you to heal."

"I'm not about to start running a marathon. All I will do is go out there and be amongst my friends."

"I know you, B'Elanna. You would only get into trouble again."

"Doc, we are in a prison. I couldn't get into trouble if I wanted to. Look, I promise, all I will do is sit around some."

"Alright, let's compromise," The Doctor relented. "You wait here one second, I will be right back," He was out of the room before B'Elanna had a chance to react.

"You got to be kidding me," B'Elanna said when the Doctor reappeared a minute later pushing a hover chair.

"You want out of here, fine you can. But only if you stay in this chair, you said that you would only sit anyway. That is my condition B'Elanna, take it or leave it."

"Alright, if that is the only way, fine."

"Oh, no," The Doctor said, knowing that B'Elanna was giving in too fast, "I know you, you will get out of here and jump out of this thing as soon as you leave sickbay. So to make sure that you stay in it I will personally drag you back here and put you in bed if I see you out of it only once."

"Yeah, yeah," B'Elanna moved the few steps to the chair. She had to admit that walking was harder than she had expected, but not as impossible as the Doctor was pretending it was.

"Don't think I won't do it."

B'Elanna got into the chair and rolled her eyes, "Gee, Doc. Am I at least allowed to get out of this thing to relieve myself, or should I just pee while sitting in it?"

"I could always give you a catheter if you think that using the bathroom would be a problem," The Doctor replied smugly.

"Not a chance," B'Elanna said while she looked over the hover chair controls.

"Right, the way this works is..."

"Doc, I am the chief engineer of a spaceship, I think I can find out how a damn hover chair works, don't you think?"

"Fine, get out of here and break your neck for all I care," The Doctor said, giving up.


B'Elanna was halfway through the door when the Doctor spoke up again, "Be careful."

"Thanks, Doc. I will," B'Elanna said softly over her shoulder before continuing on. She knew that the Doctor could really be annoying, and his bedside manners left much to be desired, and he could be way too overbearing with his patience, and he... But underneath it all, there was a good man who truly cared for the well-being of the Voyager crew.

B'Elanna took a moment to look around after leaving sickbay, seeing a broad corridor going in two directions was definitely not what she expected from a prison. She thought that it looked more like the dorm she had stayed in during her time at the Academy. A little further down one side of the corridor, she saw two force fields behind each other and figured that this was the way out.

'Ok, so that's something I don't know from the Academy. That does indeed remind me of a prison.' To the other side, she saw several corridors branching off and some, what looked like gathering places. She headed to the first of the gathering and, to her luck, she found Tom, Chakotay, and a man that didn't belong to the Voyager crew talking at a table. The three men were so deep in discussion that they didn't notice B'Elanna until she spoke up.

"Hi, you guys are just the people I'm looking for."

As soon as the slave saw B'Elanna, he jumped up to stand at attention, only to realize a moment later that he wasn't in the presence of the Intendant, "My god, it is true. I see it, but I can't believe it."

"Ah, yes," B'Elanna said, "I'm not the bad bitch, that's the one who was here earlier. So just relax will ya?"

"Hey, what are you doing out of bed?" Tom asked, "When I was there earlier the Doctor told me it could be several days before you could leave sickbay."

"Well, let's just say that the Intendant's visit gave me a good incentive to heal quicker and the Doctor was his own overcautious self. Now," B'Elanna started, changing subject since she hated talking about her health, "Since you three are sitting here talking anyway, why don't we move this party? You can show me where my room is and then we talk there some. I want to know everything that is going on. And you," B'Elanna pointed at the slave, "Can tell me all there is to know about the difference between a slave, a master slave, and a body slave."

"Um, maybe this can wait till tomorrow," Tom suggested in an almost diplomatic tone, "Give you some time to rest a little before having lengthy discussions."

"Listen, Tom, I had all the rest I can take. I know that everyone is trying to keep information from me for some bizarre reason, I just don't know why. Are you afraid of me finding out that I'm only alive because Seven gave the Intendant a good lay? Then I can assure you that I know more about the subject than the lot of you since Seven and I actually talked about that.

"Enough fooling around, I want answers and I want them now. So you better start talking or I swear I will kill somebody and then... What?" B'Elanna asked when she saw the three men cringe at the same time.

"Maybe we do need to fill you in on some things," Chakotay said, the picture of someone that looked just like B'Elanna killing a Human in cold blood was still dancing in front of his eyes, "Come on guys."

All of them followed Chakotay as he moved into the corridor and in the direction of the force fields.

"This... cellblock is big enough for us all, if we put two people in a room," Chakotay started to explain, he knew that the Klingon would have a fit when she found out with who she had to share a room.

"So?" B'Elanna asked.

"Well, we suspect that they also put other people than slaves and prisoners in here from time to time, judging from the interior, and judging from the fact that the rooms in the beginning of the cellblock are the biggest. So with that in mind the Senior staff got those rooms, still sharing a room of course."

"Why do I get the feeling that I'm not going to like what you are leading up to?" B'Elanna asked before realization set in. Seven was not there, so that meant that there was only one woman left in the senior staff, "Oh, you got to be kidding me, please don't tell me that I'm sharing a room with the Captain."

"Sorry B'Elanna," Chakotay said sincerely, he knew that the engineer liked the Captain, but not enough to look forward to sharing a room with her, "She did have a valid point when I suggested that she take a room for herself. She said that if she did that, then you being the only woman left on the senior staff would also need a single room..."

"Oh, I'm more than willing to share with somebody of the lower ranks," B'Elanna saw Ensign Jenkins coming out of one of the rooms and pointed at the blonde, "Her, for instance."

"Which would leave her present roommate, with the rank of crewman, to share the room with the Captain," Chakotay countered nicely.

"What about Tom here?" B'Elanna asked, getting more desperate, "We used to date, I'm sure he wouldn't have a problem sharing a room with me."

"Oh, so now I'm suddenly good enough again?" Tom asked with a smile, taking the sting out of the words.

"Tom, for this you would even be allowed to sleep in the same bed as me," B'Elanna shot back, despite it all she was glad that she could once again have those little word duels with him.

"Um, Chakotay, you know... maybe it isn't such a bad idea if B'Elanna and I shared a room," Tom was quick to say, drawing a snort from the engineer and a chuckle from Chakotay.

"Nice try, Tom," Chakotay said while he stopped to let B'Elanna into the room first, "And nice try, B'Elanna. Just live with it, okay?" He asked, not wanting to spend too much time on the subject. They had other things to talk about.

B'Elanna took a look around the room, seeing that it was indeed not too bad. The room was about five by five meter (15 by 15 feet) with a bed on the left and right side of the door. On each side behind the bed there stood a little desk with a chair and behind that there was a small closet.

On the far wall there were two doors and in the middle between the two doors there was a replicator. The two doors were milky white, translucent enough to see if somebody was on the other side of the door, but not translucent enough to see more than an outline from that person, certainly not enough to see what the person was actually doing. A quick inspection of the two doors confirmed her suspicion that there was a sonic-shower behind one door, and a toilet behind the other.

The door to the corridor was also made of the translucent milky white material. When closed it would give privacy, but a guard on the outside would still see if somebody was standing close to the door. B'Elanna had certainly slept in a lot worse places.

"Where is the Captain anyway?" B'Elanna asked.

Tom answered that one, "During the day, she is usually in the main gathering room. I have a feeling that she doesn't want to be to close to those Klingons out there the entire day."

"Why? They are far enough way," B'Elanna had guessed the distance to the guards on the other side of the force fields to be around fifteen meter (45ft).

Tom was about to sit down on the bed that wasn't made, knowing that the Captain must have made the other bed which had the telltale painfully straight Star Fleet fold. But then he remembered that the bed he was about to sit on had to be made later for B'Elanna to go to sleep. Tom had clearly seen that the engineer still needed rest, despite the way she was acting. Knowing that B'Elanna would rather suffer a heart attack while making the bed herself than ask for help, he took the pile of sheets and blankets and started making the bed for her, "Hey, I'd think you would be glad with her only being here at night. You know, don't look a gift horse in the mouth, and such."

"You know, Tom, I have absolutely no idea what that is supposed to mean. Are you trying to insult the Captain?" B'Elanna really didn't have an idea what the saying meant, but the general meaning of it sure wasn't that hard to understand. But sometimes the pilot was so easy to tease.

Hearing the remark, Tom stopped what he was doing and quickly turned around, "What? No! No, I... Alright, to use words you can actually understand with that one track mind of yours, if somebody gives you a spaceship for free, you don't go complaining about the flaking paint job. You just say 'thank you.'"

"Alright, thank you," Though it seemed part of the conversation, her eyes had drifted to the almost finished bed, indicating why she really was saying the words.

Tom's only reply was to smile at her for a second and turn around to finish what he had started.

"Right," B'Elanna said while she pointed at the slave, "Before we go on, what's your name anyway?"


"Patrick... what?" B'Elanna asked, "What's your last name?"

"Just Patrick, slaves don't have last names."

"Surely you must have had a family name at some point?" B'Elanna asked, wondering if in this universe the family name had some special importance. Like it being the only thing that a slave could say that was truly theirs.

"What's the use of a family name, if you don't have any families?"

None of them had expected that answer.

Seeing how the others looked at him, Patrick started to explain, "I'm sorry, my name is Patrick Stewards. But normally our last names are never mentioned out loud. If you are overheard referring to your last name, you can be severely punished for it. Only master slaves are allowed to also use their last name."

"What's so bad about having a last name?" Chakotay asked.

"That's humanity's own fault. You told me that you have heard of our history. So you know that humans used to rule everything that is now ruled by the Coalition. We had slaves back then.

"Klingons, Cardassians, and Romulans were the most favored to do the hard labor. Bajorans were mostly used as servants. The Betazoids as sex slaves, since they could feel what their master wanted. And the Trill were used as sex slaves if they were not joined, and if they were then they usually served as archivists. The humans found it convenient that they only had to train the joined Trill once at a job and they could perform that job for generations, until the symbiont died."

"And the point is?" B'Elanna asked.

"The point is that after the Coalition defeated the Sol Empire, they punished the humans and the races loyal to the humans by turning them all into slaves and using the same system as we humans used to do. And for some reason the Human race had, at some point decided that slaves shouldn't have a last name because that would make them too much of an individual; slaves should be nothing more than numbers. Well, 'thanks' to our ancestors WE are now nothing more than numbers.

"The only exception being the master slaves. Once somebody becomes a master slave, they are allowed the official use of their last name. This is officially done to indicate that they are more than just slaves, though we think that this is only to remind the rest of us that we ARE nothing and HAVE nothing, not even a last name."

"Are they also using the same system of a certain race slave for a certain type of job?" Chakotay asked.

"Not as much. Mainly they just assign available slaves to whatever place needs them. They don't care that we humans die quicker in mines than, say, the Vulcans. If we die, we are just replaced.

"And that is what I meant with having no families. They use the planets the slave races come from, like our Sol, as breeding grounds to make sure a steady supply of slaves continues to be born. They leave several hundred million on the planets and make it clear to them that they will live as long as they produce at least one child every four years. And as soon as that child reaches the age of twelve, it is taken away from their parents, never to see them again. Except of course a few to replace the slaves that have died on the planet."

They were all quiet for a minute after that. Patrick had already informed Tom and Chakotay that the Voyager crew was not treated as normal slaves were, but hearing the fate of Earth, it still hurt.

"Alright," B'Elanna finally said, breaking the silence, "Let's change subject a little. Fill me in on what happened, starting from the moment I got hurt."

And so the others did.

It was much later when B'Elanna was lying on her bed, going over everything that the others had told her. She looked up when somebody entered the room and was discontented to see that it was Janeway. B'Elanna knew that she could look forward to at least an hour of the Captain asking her stuff and also giving her view on things, "Captain."

Janeway crouched down beside B'Elanna and smiled at the Klingon. "B'Elanna, I'm glad to see that you are doing well enough to leave sickbay."

"I'm just glad to be out of there, Captain," B'Elanna said, sitting up and resigning herself to her fate of having a lengthy conversation with Janeway. She remembered back to a time where she actually liked to have those conversations. How things had changed in the last couple of years.

"So, did Seven have anything interesting to tell you when she visited you this afternoon?"

"We mainly just talked about how she and I are doing."

"I didn't have a chance to talk to her, was she able to tell you something we can use, something about the ship, or something about the people onboard?"

"No, nothing. She is just kept in the Intendant's chambers and only walked through some corridors to get here," B'Elanna straight out lied. She couldn't believe that Janeway didn't even have the decency to ask how Seven was doing before starting to ask other questions.

"Damn, I had hoped that..."

Janeway was interrupted by the words 'somebody is coming' drifting in from the corridor. Janeway stood and moved into the corridor, followed by a much slower B'Elanna.

This time there were no guards accompanying the person, just a deactivation of the force fields, one only deactivating when the second was activated and secure. Making sure that nobody could use the opportunity to try and overpower the guards.

The person had a gray jumpsuit on, just like the other slaves, except for the sleeves, which were black. But what had everybody's jaw hanging open was that they all recognized the person. The blonde hair was only a little longer than what was commonly known as a 'crew cut', and there wasn't an implant to be seen, but the woman was clearly Seven of Nine.

"I'm Annika Hansen, master slave. From now on, I'm your commander," The blonde said to nobody in particular, before walking into the first room she came across. Seeing that one of the beds looked like somebody had just slept on it she moved to the other bed and threw the bag she was carrying on it, making it clear that she was commandeering the bed for herself.

"Excuse me, but that's my bed."

Annika turned around and looked at the woman standing in front of her. From the whole demeanor of the woman, Annika suspected that she had been the leader of the slaves until now, "Not anymore it isn't. Standard procedure, the master slave always takes the first room in the cellblock. You're a slave, you should know that."

"We are prisoners, not slaves. We come from a place where slavery had been abolished centuries ago. I am Captain Kathryn Janeway, commander of this crew. And that IS my bed."

"I don't care what you were, now you are slaves, and seeing that I'm a master slave, this is MY bed, are we clear on this?"

"Very," Janeway said while pointing at Tuvok, who had joined them by now, "Tuvok, please remove this trespasser from my room."

B'Elanna moved forward a little from her place behind Chakotay who had also pressed himself into the room to see what was going on, "Um, Captain, that might not be such a good idea," B'Elanna knew that Janeway was about to make a big mistake in her efforts to continue to be the undisputed leader.

So the Klingon decided to tell a little lie, figuring that it was ok since it might stop Janeway from doing something that could get them all killed, "Seven did tell me that the Intendant had already given the order to have us all killed, but that Seven had begged and pleaded and... done other things to convince the Intendant to retract her order and let us live for now. I don't think throwing the master slave, appointed by the Intendant, out of a room will make a good impression on the Intendant. You can have my bed, Captain, I will move."

Annika looked at the woman that had just spoken and straightened up, "Intendant."

"Close, but no cigar," B'Elanna said with a grin while she came further into the room and set down on her bed, "I just look like her."


"For now, let's just say that I'm the nice version."

"Thanks for offering your bed, B'Elanna. But it won't be necessary. We will find another place for Miss Hansen to stay," Janeway didn't like the idea, at all, of somebody just taking over from her. "I'm sure Miss Hansen doesn't want to make any problems with the people she has to work with, especially not over something as simple as a place to sleep."

Annika took a step closer to Janeway, having enough of her attitude, "Listen, woman. This conversation is over. Either you walk out of this room right now, or I do," Seeing that the woman was about to speak, Annika added, "But when I walk out of here, it is to inform those guards out there that you are a hostile slave. Do you really want to die that badly?" Annika waited a heartbeat before mimicking Janeway's words, "I'm sure you don't want to make any problems with the master slave you have to work with, especially not over something as simple as a place to sleep."

Janeway just stood there with her hands on her hips looking at Annika without saying anything. She knew that she had played too high, there was no way that she could back down now without it looking like she was retreating.

Annika tilted her head slightly and smiled sweetly, a smile that didn't reach her eyes, "Well, are you going to get out of my room?"

"The only way I'm leaving this room is dead," Janeway said, sure that the blonde wouldn't actually do what she threatened to do.

Annika dipped her head slightly as if accepting Janeway's statement, "Fine, that can be arranged, excuse me."

Annika moved out of the room and, for a moment, Janeway thought that she had won, but that was only until she saw that the blonde moved in the direction of the force fields.


Janeway heard the blonde speaking and moved to the door to see what was going on and to her absolute disbelief and horror, the blonde had really addressed the Klingon guards. And what was worse was that they had dropped the first force field so that she could come closer.

"What?" One of the guards asked roughly.

Annika looked back and her eyes found those of Janeway, giving the woman one last chance.

Janeway saw the look in those blue eyes and knew that she had lost this round. Without saying a word, she walked out of the room and headed down the corridor.

Seeing the woman leave, Annika turned back to the guards, "Forgive me for disturbing you; there always has to be one."

"Hmm," The guard agreed, also looking at the retreating form of Janeway, "That one is a trouble maker, after what I saw earlier today I have a feeling that she is also on the Intendant's short list." The guard looked back to the master slave. He was smart enough to understand that if the person in the prison that looked like the Intendant came from the other universe, then this master slave had to be this universe's version of the Intendant's body slave.

He also understood that she could only be here if she was specifically appointed by the Intendant. So he figured that it was better to be a little polite to the master slave, "The Intendant gave us strict orders to make sure that you were not harmed in any way by them. So if there is any problem at all, you just let me know. I'm the commander of the guards."

"Thank you, but I am sure that I can handle them. It's just that, as always, I had to prove that I can truly step up to the masters and be the first to speak," Annika took a step back, indicating that she was about to leave, "Once again, please forgive me for interrupting you."

"Good luck, master slave. With that bunch, you're going to need it."

Annika looked over her shoulder to some of the people that were watching her, "I know. Damn they look so... weak. As if they haven't seen a true day's work in their life," Annika lowered her head slightly before taking another step back, "Once again, please forgive the intrusion." With that, she turned around and walked back into the room.

B'Elanna moved aside to let Annika enter and closed the door after them both before she went to sit on her bed again, taking a moment to look at the woman that looked so much like Seven, but acted totally differently.

"Gods, I hate having to do that," Annika said, dumping the contents of the bag onto the bed.

B'Elanna saw that most of the contents was made up out of two other uniforms like the one Annika was already wearing, which made sense since the replicators would only give out totally gray jumpsuits. So the master slave with her different uniform needed some uniforms that she could simply put through the recycle program in the replicator, "You hate having to do what?" B'Elanna asked, "Taking over, or crawling for the guards?"

"Both," Annika replied, without stopping what she was doing. She put one of the uniforms in the replicator and recycled it, making sure that a clean and whole uniform would be in the memory of the replicator. "Why can't people just accept that I'm the one in charge? But nooooo, there always has to be one that wants to show that they are tougher than me. Can't you people understand that even if that was true, you still would have to do what I say or else we would all get killed for not accomplishing what we are ordered to do?"

"So, do you want me to leave the room too?" B'Elanna asked.

Annika turned around and studied the Klingon for a moment, "That depends, are you also going to give me a hard time?"

"Nope, not planning to at least."

"In that case, no. I don't mind sharing my room, I just mind people not being able to follow the most basic of rules."

"Um, what the Captain said is true, we are not from around here, so we don't know the slave rules."

Annika put the two uniforms in the little closets on her side of the room before sitting down on her bed, "I told your 'Captain' that it was common practice for the master slave to have the first room, so she knew the rule then. And the fact that this is the only room with closets in it should also have been an indication. But she still wanted to play the tough bitch."

"You outshined her though on the tough bitch department," B'Elanna said with a grin.

"Yeah, well, I have seen a lot worse than her."

B'Elanna pointed to a box that had also been in the bag, it was about the length and with of a human underarm. "What's in there, if I may ask?"

Annika opened the box and very carefully took out two long, but thin blades, "I always have to take these out when I am moved to a different project." While speaking, Annika had opened the jumpsuit and stripped her upper body bare so that she could better reach the mechanisms strapped to her arms.

"Kahless, woman. Cover yourself!" B'Elanna said while she averted her eyes from Annika's naked upper body.

Annika took a moment to look down at her own body before placing the first of the blades into the mechanism on her left underarm, "Why? I don't think I have anything to be ashamed of. You should consider yourself lucky, people normally do pretty much anything to see me naked."

B'Elanna figured that she had been courteous enough and she was certainly not going to stare at the floor all the time, so she looked back up and took in the beautiful body in front of her.

Where Seven had curves and enough muscle tone to give her a body everybody wanted to... touch, Annika was all muscles. Not the bulky muscles people often had who were in the gym training for hours every day. No, Annika had lean but well defined muscles, the kind one got from physically working hard each day. The kind of muscles not seen that often anymore on starships.

Engineers, like B'Elanna herself, really formed the only exception to that; they still had to do hard manual work on occasion. And with people who did this a lot, like B'Elanna, it still showed. Because of the lack of body-fat, Annika's breast size had to be about a size smaller than Seven's, but she still had a very ample chest.

"Wow," B'Elanna heard herself say before she realized that she had spoken.

Annika looked up from her task and straightened up a little, giving the Klingon an even better view, "You like what you see?"

"I would have to be dead not to," B'Elanna honestly admitted.

"Well, you can look, but not touch. I wear these things everywhere. While I sleep, in the shower, everywhere," Annika made a little movement with her arm and suddenly the blade that she had just fastened into the mechanism on her arm came shooting out, doubling in length while it fully extended, extending her reach with a very sharp and deadly sixty centimeter (2 feet).

"I would never..." B'Elanna said, slightly hurt by the insinuation that she would touch somebody against her will.

"Just making a point," Annika said. She had heard the tone in which the Klingon had spoken, and found that she wanted to believe the woman. She made another small, unnatural movement with her arm and the blade disappeared into the mechanism again.

"Hollow blades, huh?" B'Elanna asked in an effort to get the conversation going again.

Annika picked up the second blade and showed it to B'Elanna, "Yes, it's a Cardassian design. There are actually four parts. It can be double the size you just saw. But I find that too long to be able to use it properly in close quarters, and having it set to only extend two levels gives it extra strength, making it strong enough to cut through everything less strong than reinforced steel. And unless I truly use it for steel, it also stays razor sharp like it is now."

"Don't you feel uncomfortable, sitting exposed like that?" B'Elanna finally asked.

"I have learned long ago to not be ashamed of anything. And as I said before," Annika waved a hand to indicate her own body, "I don't think I have anything to be ashamed of," She locked the second blade into place and looked at B'Elanna with a grin, "And besides, I thought you liked the view."

"So how come you have knives?" B'Elanna asked, wisely enough changing the subject, but also smart enough to indeed enjoy the view. "I have heard that the Intendant has said that we would all be killed if one of us was found with a weapon of any kind, and yet they let you walk in here with... that."

Annika moved her other arm slightly to check if the mechanism strapped to that arm also worked, it did, "Because as master slave it is all nice and dandy that I can go crying for help with the guards, but the threat 'do that or else I'm going to tell the guards' gets old pretty quick," Annika suddenly moved off the bed and before B'Elanna knew it she felt the cold metal of a knife at her throat, "But when I do this and than say, 'do that, or else... Works every time."


"Sorry," Annika said, moving back to her own bed, "And also the guards are not always there to look out for me, and if they are, they might just not care if the other slaves kill me. So for the reasons I just told you, and for self-protection slaves get a set of these when they become master slaves."

B'Elanna saw Annika once again make the arm movement that made the blade disappear into its holder and the Klingon suspected that the inside of the blades was filled with a mechanism that reacted to just the right movement of the arm, which would make it close to impossible for the knives to extend by accident. That is at least how B'Elanna would have designed them, "But can't other slaves take them from you and use it to attack the guards?"

"First of all I would like to see them try, and second, you will see when we get out of here tomorrow that I will be the first in line. I will have to show these before the force fields are dropped. Since they can't be replicated by these replicators, the guards will know that nobody else has one of these."

"So you've had to use them yet?"

"Yes, more than once. But normally just a deep scratch is enough to let people know that I know how to use them. Only on a few occasions it wasn't enough."

"Hey, I thought that we would be moved today?" B'Elanna suddenly remembered, making the connection with what Annika had just said about 'tomorrow.'

"That is what they told me too, but just before I got here they told me that this was postponed and that we are leaving tomorrow morning," Being satisfied with the working of her knives, Annika took of her shoes before standing up and letting her uniform drop to the floor. She stepped out of the uniform and bent down to pick up the uniform and put it in the replicator. After activating the replication cycle, she looked over her shoulder to B'Elanna and started laughing when she saw how the Klingon was looking at her, "I have been three days without a shower, and I definitely need one."

Annika walked into the shower and once again treated B'Elanna to a very interesting view by not closing the door while she took her sonic shower, "So, are you going to tell me why you look so much like the Intendant?"

"Ub bu, um. That depends," B'Elanna replied after finding her tongue, "Are you about done playing with me?"

"What? You got a problem with me being naked? I thought from your reaction that you liked looking at a naked woman."

"A woman that has knives strapped to her arms while taking a sonic shower is never totally naked," B'Elanna shot back, not denying the statement. Especially not since she was indeed still taking in the blonde's form. The lower part of Annika's body was just as well formed as the upper part, making the Klingon groan softly.

Annika heard the soft groan and decided to have mercy on the poor woman, "As soon as I have my uniform back on, I'll be done tormenting you," She said while she shut the sonic shower off and walked to the replicator to take out the uniform she had recycled a few minutes before. She put on her uniform and set down on her bed before taking a long look at the Klingon, seeing that B'Elanna had her eyes closed now and was definitely breathing a little heavier, "Alright, you can open your eyes now. I'm done tormenting you."

B'Elanna opened her eyes and looked at the blonde, only to see those blue eyes looking back and a small smile on her lips, "Did you enjoy torturing me? Maybe I should find another room," B'Elanna knew that it would be of no use to pretend that the blonde had not affected her.

Annika stopped smiling when she heard the Klingon's words. Despite the fact that she only knew the woman for about half an hour, she didn't want her to go, "Please stay. I'm sorry. It's just that... Never before in my life has somebody looked at me like you were doing just now without trying to jump me the next minute. It felt good teasing you; it was more fun than I had in years. I won't do it again."

B'Elanna had heard the trace of sadness in Annika's voice, and it struck a note to realize that a little bit of teasing had been the most fun the blonde had had in years, "Yeah, well, there is no need for that. Certain Klingons actually like being teased, and I'm one of them. I just wasn't expecting it."

"So are you telling me that you don't mind me leaving the door open when I take a shower?"

"No, I don't. As long as you don't mind hearing a groan or two once in a while."

"Nope, I sure won't mind hearing that," Annika grinned evilly before asking her next question, "So you also wouldn't mind my lying down on this bed and relieving some pent up energy?"

"Relieving some p..." B'Elanna repeated before she fully realized what the blonde was saying. She covered her face with her hands not believing this was happening to her. It sounded just like one of Tom's adult holoprograms, "Kahless, woman! You want to drive me insane? Let's change the subject already, okay?"

"Okay, okay. I will have mercy on you, for now," Annika needed a minute to stop laughing before saying seriously, "Alright, change of subject..."

Annika stopped talking when she realized that she felt more comfortable with the woman sitting across from her than she had ever felt with someone else before. There was just a certain... openness about the Klingon. Something that had made Annika do something that she had never done before. She was indeed used to people looking at her naked body, but never before had she actually showed her body to someone else.

Normally people only got to see her naked because there just was no room for privacy. Literally no room. Not all, or actually most, living spaces of slaves were not so comfortable as the one she was in now. In the short time she now knew the Klingon, Annika had found out that she liked playing with her, but she wasn't sure just how far she could go.

"But, um... Before we change the subject," Annika said hesitantly, "I have to ask, you will tell me when I go too far? Despite the fact that I enjoy teasing you, this is new for me. I don't want to go too far."

B'Elanna could clearly hear the insecurity in Annika's voice and somehow it made her want to put the blonde at ease. And if the woman liked playing with her, well... it certainly was a nice way of being played with, "Woman, I'm a Klingon. You would have to go very far before it would truly be too far for me, now that I'm prepared that is."

"Good, now let's change the subject."

"Good plan," B'Elanna agreed, "There are several things you will need to know including the reason why without a doubt everybody will gape at you the first couple of times they see you."

Part 9

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