DISCLAIMER: I don't own any of the characters borrowed from Paramount's "Star Trek: Voyager" television series. In fact, I don't even own the entire Star Trek experience. I do, however, own the little characters seen within this story that nobody's ever heard of before. Unfortunately, with this story I won't be making any profit from the casual and purposeful exploitation of these characters, so I don't want anyone to bother contacting a lawyer to harass me over this. I don't have any money and I won't earn any money over this piece of fiction.
PLOT DEVICES/BACKGROUND: Voyager has returned to the Alpha quadrant as follows the television show. Seven has joined Star Fleet. Torres and Paris have divorced following the death of their child. Seven and Torres are assigned to a new ship, the "USS Mercury." The rest of the Voyager crew has been split up amongst the fleet.

When Arguments End
By Lone Templar

The first time I saw the explosive temper of my chief was also the very first time I ever laid eyes upon Seven of Nine. The tall, impressive beauty had walked into engineering without a glance or word to anyone and marched straight up to the primary engineering computer. Without a word or even an expression, she began entering equations into the computer with a concentration that I've seldom seen before.

I can remember how the light reflected off of the two cybernetic implants that bore silent witness to her time with the Borg: the metal arch over her left eye and the starburst on her right cheek. I've heard all the stories about how she was taken as a child and raised with the enemy, only to be rescued later by Captain Janeway of the USS Voyager. I suppose that everyone's heard those stories by now. Only six months ago, the Voyager came back home and I'd already begun to hear the stories of her adventures within the week. Of course, how many ships have their Captains arrested for six violations of the Prime Directive?

Anyway, the blonde bombshell acted like she knew what she was doing, so no one in my department even considered questioning her about her actions. To tell the truth, with the stories running around the fleet about her, I certainly didn't want anything to do with her. Fear and uncertainty are powerful motivators and I could just imaging what the Ice Queen could do to my poor, fragile, mortal body if I managed to displease her in some manner. I decided then and there that life was filled with too many unpredictable variables already, and I didn't need mother to receive that little message saying that her little boy had died because he pissed off a Borg drone.

Seven had been working silently for about an hour when Commander Torres came walking in from her morning staff meeting. She was smiling, apparently relaxed and enjoying her day until her brown eyes fell upon the blonde silently working. I can remember that there seemed to be a hush that fell over the entire department as miscellaneous crewmembers seemed to fade into the machinery in a vain attempt at escaping our chief's violent temper. We'd already witnessed it on too many occasions to count, and when seeing her reddened face scrunch up in fury was deemed a sign and silent declaration to run for their lives. No one wanted the fiery, little Klingon to focus that much rage and passion on them, so when viewed this time, even I tried to fade into the distance.

Unfortunately, I was cornered. After glancing desperately around for any route of escape, I discovered that I would have to walk directly in front of my chief to get out of range. Seeing her fists curled so tight that they turned white, I decided to press my back up against the wall and clamped my mouth shut as tightly as I could. However, no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't seem to close my eyes and I witnessed the explosion of anger from a much closer range than I ever wanted to be. The following argument was more impressive than my memories of the Dominion war and the two times I've seen close combat in tight quarters.

Commander Torres began screaming at Seven while the blonde kept pointing out that her modifications made the ship more efficient. It was horrible. It was loud. It was apocalyptic. The scene ran through my dreams for several nights to come and I was amazed that the chief didn't resort to physical violence. I suppose that the introduction of security to the little tiff was the only reason that it didn't, though. It certainly seemed as if the chief wanted to beat the stuffing out of the Borg.

After security had drug both participants out of engineering, things seemed to become brighter. The other engineers scurried back into the light and hurried to their stations. The few, quick glances shared between us was silent agreement to never speak of this again. And to the best of my knowledge, none of us ever has, until now.

Over the next couple of months, I bore witness to the repeating of the "Confrontation" as we called it. Our chief was trying desperately to rein in that temper, but Seven just seemed to have a way of making that Klingon blood boil. It never seemed to degrade into an all out brawl, but each time resulted in security dragging the two participants away in the end. Life was predictable if not safe.

I found out latter that our chief of security handled these fights "off the record" so to speak. I always wondered how the future would have changed if the Captain had ever found out. As entertaining as these confrontations were after the fact, the entire department would have given anything to avoid them. I was always surprised that there was never a permanent member of security assigned to engineering. I suppose that there should have been.

Oh, don't get me wrong. Our group tried to help our chief for many different reasons. Commander Torres was passionate about the engines and the ship. She took care of us whenever we ran afoul of the different rules and regulations that just seemed to be begging to be disobeyed. She tolerated our still and even joined in our parties from time to time. She was the matriarch of our little family and we loved having her in charge. Her display of temper towards us after she began to interface with the Borg was extremely minor in comparison. She made us feel special and we wanted to help her. But as the Borg say, resistance is futile.

One of our early attempts was to reprogram the door sensors to ignore the Borg when she approached… it didn't work. Seven simply had herself beamed in from then on and she seemed to spend even more time in our department. So we started simple sabotage of her astrometrics systems in the futile hopes of keeping her located within her own department. It didn't work. She could fix the problems but she refused to… she just relocated herself to engineering and used the computers there to interface with the sensors. No matter what we tried, it always seemed to backfire on us. As time went by, we started seeing more and more of the curvaceous blonde and there seemed to be nothing we could do about it. In fact, she seemed to become even more arrogant as she casually ripped up our traps and continued to assimilate the ship to her specifications. Engineers were becoming downright depressed. I still wonder if we could have been more effective if we had enlisted Commander Torres to our cause, but we made the decision to help her out as much as we could.

So went the first year. The blonde and the Klingon were like matter and anti-matter. No matter how hard we tried, the two kept coming together, and we tried some crazy schemes. We even went as far as programming the transporters to scan engineering and beam the blonde to the brig whenever she entered without permission. We were just doomed to failure at keeping these two explosive beauties apart.

Our plans changed after fourteen months of warfare. We were assigned a failed counselor who turned out to be a decent engineer. She took one look at the battle raging between our protagonists and found out exactly what was going on. I never learned exactly what went on, but I still remember the day she had drug the fiery Klingon warrior off to the office. Whatever it was, after an hour of discussion, Commander Torres walked out of that office with the most thoughtful expression on her face that I have ever seen. That day was the turning point in the war. God, what I wouldn't give to be a fly on the wall in that office.

The next time that Seven showed up, we all tensed and prepared ourselves for the battle that was coming. As we faded into the background, I was in a unique position to observe what happened. Our chief came storming out of her office and marched right up to the arrogant Borg. I don't think that Seven had a clue as to what was about to happen. All I know is that I was taken completely by surprise. The chief was giving every appearance of being in a rage, but the body language was entirely wrong. It slowly dawned on me that our chief was faking her anger this time, and this prompted me to stick around to see what was going to happen. As Seven began her typical lecture on how inefficient our chief was, Commander Torres reached up with both hands and gently grabbed the blonde by her head. Jerking her down to the chief's level, B'Elanna promptly gave her a kiss that could have curled my toes. It was just loaded with passion. The loud squeak that Seven released was absolutely priceless.

Seven's eyes had widened in shock and her mouth was hanging open when she was released. She tried to speak several times, but nothing coherent came out. When the chief reached up again, Seven let out another loud squeak and literally ran from engineering. Turning my eyes back to see when the chief was doing, I saw a feral grin come across her features before she threw her head back and howled with laughter. That was the day that the war shifted from engineering to astrometrics. I didn't see Seven in engineering again for almost six months, but during those six months, the entire ship learned what was going on. If it weren't for the gossip that started flowing through the different decks, I would have been left in the dark.

The next day, according to rumor and sensor scans by curious engineers, Commander Torres showed up for the first time since coming aboard in astrometrics. Seven was bent over her terminal punching in commands when the chief walked up behind her and slapped her on her bottom. When Seven spun around in outrage, her head was once again grabbed, brought lower, and kissed very firmly. Another very loud squeak was let loose before the blonde broke loose and ran into her office. I suppose that the chief would have followed her but a force field snapped into place isolating the blonde from all outside influences. It was reported by witnesses that B'Elanna had whispered, "You can run, but you will be mine!" before she left astrometrics wearing a very satisfied grin.

Seven was rotated off of the Alpha shift and onto Gamma, supposedly at her own request that same day. Our spies throughout the ship had that piece of information into engineering five minutes after the first officer approved the request. I saw the chief smile in satisfaction before she walked out to change her own shift around. That was how I found myself carrying the title of "Alpha Shift Supervisor" and Commander Torres was given a written commendation for attention to duty for her idea. The idea itself was simple; to place an official supervisor in charge of each shift and let the chief pick random shifts to work on. That way she could directly train each shift of engineers without having to fiddle around with changing shift schedules. Of course, we knew what was going on even if the command staff was clueless. By doing this, B'Elanna had set herself up to have free time whenever she wanted and Seven would never have any idea when the chief was working herself.

The next encounter was also in astrometrics, even though very little happened. Seven was working at her terminal but it was a far cry from the efficient method she normally employed. She was chewing her lower lip in consternation while trying to enter her commands into the computer. However, jumping in surprise whenever the doors slid open was starting to take their toll on the young blonde. When the chief walked in, an expression of terror swept over Seven's face before she slapped her com-badge in panic and snapped out, "Computer, initiate program Seven Alpha One." And she disappeared in a rain of blue sparkles. The chief tried to locate her, but apparently Seven's program also hid her bio-signature from internal sensors. When the chief returned to engineering, I was given the assignment to break the encryption codes and find out exactly what the program was and what it did.

Breaking into that program took me a month of hard work. During that time, whenever the two ran across each other, Seven initiated the program and beamed out to somewhere unknown. She lost her expression of panic and slowly resorted back to her expressionless arrogance even though she still ran away. Meanwhile, the chief was getting short tempered the longer this went on. She was starting to turn that fiery disposition on me when I finally cracked the code to Seven's program… it was brilliant. Looking at those codes made me realize exactly how intelligent Seven was. I doubt I could have come up with anything similar no matter how hard I worked on it. Even the chief was impressed. Muttering something along the lines of "That's my girl!" she hurried out and made her way to astrometrics.

I don't know exactly what the chief did, but the playback on the results was hilarious. The entire staff of engineering that was on duty gathered around a monitor and watched the scene with glee. The chief walked in to Seven's department and halted as soon as the doors slid shut. The chief kept her face impassive and simply stared at the blonde. Seven actually had the gall to sneer as she tapped her com-badge confidently. That sneer was quickly wiped off her face when nothing happened. After trying her escape program three more times, she slowly turned her stunned eyes back to the chief only to be met by one of the most provocative leers that she'd probably ever seen. Panic set back into her classic Norwegian features. Letting loose that adorably loud squeak of hers, she rushed into her office and that force field snapped back up into place. But this time, B'Elanna had a plan.

She walked confidently up to the door, stopping only inches away from the shimmering energy field. The door was still open and we could see inside to where Seven was standing, safely entombed within her force field. The chief was still wearing her leer and Seven was starting to regain her confidence.

"You will cease this behavior at once!" Seven snapped. I know that she was trying to appear confident and commanding, but you would have to be deaf not to hear how her voice trembled.

"You will be mine." The chief whispered back.

"No!" Seven shouted desperately. "You will leave now!"

"I figured out your codes and you owe me a kiss." B'Elanna whispered.

"Go away!" The blonde pleaded.

"No." Was the whispered reply.

The arrogance returned as Seven drew herself up and squared her shoulders. "You will leave now. You cannot breach this office." That was Seven, alright. Even in an emotional setting she tried to use logic, arrogance, and commands to get her way.

The chief stared at her for a second before tapping her own com-badge. "Computer, run program Capture Two."

The look on Seven's face when that force field went down was priceless. The combination of panic, shock, and fear held her immobile just long enough for the chief to grab the blonde once again and plaster a kiss on those plump lips. We cheered in engineering and I'm pretty sure that if someone were walking by at that moment, we would all have to submit ourselves to psych evaluations at once. We were behaving like lunatics. That kiss lasted for several seconds before Seven seemed to regain her composure enough break free and race out of her office. She ran out so fast that she almost lost her footing as she slammed into an unoccupied terminal before correcting her course and running out the door. The staff in astrometrics seemed hesitant about what to do. I guess that I could see things from their point of view; after all, they should show loyalty to their department chief. On the other hand, after being exposed to the Ice Queen for more than a year, they weren't the only department to enjoy seeing her composure breaking down.

A long away mission settled things down for a while, but we could tell that the chief was anxiously waiting for Seven's return. She had us working on several programs to use the ships resources as she planned for different contingences. Her Klingon determination was brought out to the fore. She was bound and determined to claim Seven as hers and she would brook no interference to her plans.

I was able to witness exactly how determined she was on the second day of that away mission. Apparently, news of the chief's pursuit of Seven was spread all over the ship. Well, at least all the decks below deck three. The betting pools were going hot and heavy with enough replicator rations riding on the line to interest even me. It was then that the new ensign that had been working at transporter number three (the one the away team had used to beam down to the planet below) first laid eyes on our dear Seven of Nine and decided that he wanted her for himself. In fact, he wasn't even shy about it. Instead, he declared his intentions to any and all that he could stop long enough to listen to him brag. When the chief found out about it, she wasn't pleased at all. While we repaired the several holes in the interior bulkhead from her expression of displeasure, she went to have a polite talk with the ensign in question. After a quick trip to Sickbay, the ensign decided that Seven was out of his league and he decided to call off his own pending claim to the gorgeous blonde. While this was going on, a very important meeting was going on that none of the departmental chiefs had a clue about.

It started with a few engineers being joined over beers by a select few crewmembers from astrometrics. While they discussed the current situation calmly and rationally, more and more departments joined them. Plans were prepared rapidly. Our chief didn't know it, but just about the entire ship had joined her side. When Seven returned from her mission, her world would be changing. A direct confrontation was planned and nothing would interfere. The underground movement was powerful. We were going to teach our resident Borg exactly what their favorite expression meant. Any resistance would be absolutely and utterly futile.

Five days later, Seven came back from her away mission. She had used the time well, according to our spy that had accompanied her down to the planet. She had kept to herself and spent the time in thought and in discourse with the Vulcan that had gone down with her. We couldn't get a feel for what they talked about, but Seven seemed to be a new person when she stepped down off of the teleporter pad. She wasn't nervous or afraid anymore and I couldn't help but wonder how this would affect our plans.

Anyway, Seven reported back to her work and the engineering staff fired up our illegal monitors to find out what was going to happen next. Sure enough, our chief walked through the door of astrometrics. We watched as Seven straightened up, squared her shoulders, and clasped her hands behind her back. With an extremely impassive face, she began to speak.

"Lieutenant Torres." Seven nodded in greeting.

"Hi, Seven." Our chief whispered her greeting in a husky voice. "I'm glad that you're back."

"You will cease any and all inappropriate behavior towards me." Seven declared in a cold voice.

B'Elanna smiled and licked her lips as her reply. Her smile grew even larger when she saw the drone's eyes flicker down momentarily and widen as she focused on that tongue.

"This is not appropriate behavior on your part, Lieutenant." Seven began again. "Your advances are not welcome. I do not wish to copulate with you."

The chief shot Seven a feral grin and said, "Oh, Seven… I don't want to copulate with you either."

Seven's face betrayed her curiosity and her suspicion. "You don't?" She asked incredulously.

"No." Was the husky reply. Back in engineering, we just glanced at each other in disbelief before turning our attention back to the screen in front of us. On the screen, Seven's shoulders hunched over in relief as a small smile broke out upon her lips.

"I want to make love to you." B'Elanna said quietly, taking several steps forward to close the distance between herself and the Borg.

We watched as the blonde's eyes widened and her panic began to build. "No… I will not allow this." She boldly declared while backing away from the chief. The Klingon seemed to focus even more intently as she kept slowly closing the distance between the two.

"Allow what, Seven?" Commander Torres asked innocently. She was now only a small step away from the blonde who was herself backed up against the outer bulkhead.

"I… I… No… You…" Seven stuttered, plastering herself into the bulkhead as she tried to escape.

"Is this what you want?" B'Elanna asked gently before drawing down the Borg's face and kissing the daylights out of her. You could see the blonde's legs buckle as she slowly and quietly let loose the most sensuous and erotic moan that I've ever heard before in my life. Several crewmembers standing around me let loose low whistles of appreciation, as the kiss seemed to drag out. In fact, it seemed that Seven was starting to give back a little before she came to her senses and gently pushed the Klingon away.

We watched as the blonde walked to the door to the corridor and paused for just a second. Looking back at the chief with a confused expression, Seven touched her lips gently with her fingers before turning back and walking out of the door. All the while, the chief was smiling softly at her. When the chief walked through the door, Seven was nowhere in sight. It seemed that our pigeon had flown the coop once again. At least the chief was in a really good mood for the rest of the day.

Plans for the hunt had to be called off for the next couple of days because of a small encounter with an unmanned probe. Engineering was busy and so was the chief. That little probe had caused a lot of damage before the command staff finally decided to destroy it. What is it with command staff anyway? Don't they know how hard it is to keep these ships in operating condition without them deciding to place it in danger at any opportunity? Well, I'm digressing.

We found out later that Seven was in the brig for failure to follow a direct order. When the command staff finally noticed that everyone in engineering was busy, they looked up Seven and ordered her to report in to help us. According to a yeoman on the bridge at the time, she refused without giving a reason. No matter how hard that prick of a first officer tried to get her down here, she just became more and more frightened and adamant about refusing. Even the first officer noticed that something was wrong but she refused to talk about it citing personal reasons. I suppose that if she didn't threaten him, she wouldn't have gotten herself thrown in the brig, but that's the way the cookie crumbles. Needless to say, the chief wasn't too happy about this development at all.

When Seven was finally released from the brig a week later, her bio-signature disappeared off of the internal sensor grid and we couldn't get a lock on it. No matter what we tried, nothing seemed to work. We could hail her through her communicator, but the computer couldn't locate it. It was a very frustrating time for all of us… especially with the chief breathing down our necks. It turned out that Seven had programmed the computer to think that her communicator and her life signs were displaced by fifty kilometers. I wish that I could have found that little bit of code because the chief gave the engineer that found it a three-day pass on the holodeck. Man, I have rotten luck.

Once this little bit of subterfuge was cracked wide open, the chief shifted her plans to high gear. When the computer reported that Seven's shift was finally over, the chief beamed herself and Seven to the holodeck for a candle-light dinner. Naturally, we were gathered around our monitor to ensure the safety of our chief. Ok, we were just nosy as hell, but it sounded good, right? Needless to say, Seven was not pleased and the conversation between the two reflected it.

"Commander Torres, if you do not cease your unwanted actions I will file an official complaint with security." Seven growled.

"I don't think you want to do that, Seven." The chief replied with a smirk.

"And why not?" Seven asked in a voice so cold it sent shivers down my spine.

"Because I don't think that my actions are unwanted." Commander Torres said with a leer while raking her eyes up and down Seven's body.

We saw Seven shift in discomfort and wrap her arms across her breasts in an attempt to regain some privacy from B'Elanna's hungry stare. "I assure you, Commander Torres, your actions are extremely unwanted." Came that cold, emotionless voice.

"No, I don't think so." B'Elanna smirked evilly. "I can smell your excitement from here. I can smell your fear."

"I am not afraid." Seven all but shouted. "Borg do not feel afraid!"

"Ah, but you're not a Borg anymore. Are you?" The chief asked in a silky voice.

"Irrelevant. If you do not cease in your actions I will protect myself physically." Seven warned her.

"Do you feel threatened, Seven?" The chief asked in that subtle, throaty voice she sometimes uses when addressing her beloved engines. She started closing the distance between the two while she continued her conversation. "You're not afraid of me, are you?"

"No, you are irrelevant." Seven said with a blank face. "There is nothing about you to fear."

"Oh, I disagree." The chief said with a leer. "I think that you're scared of me."

"Your belief is irrelevant. You will back away from me or I will damage you." Came the freezing reply. Now this was the Seven that I had heard about. She looked evil in this situation.

"Seven?" B'Elanna whispered, standing just outside Seven's personal space.

"Yes, Commander?" Seven arched an eyebrow in response.

"Resistance is futile." The chief whispered while grabbing Seven and wrapping her body in a tight embrace. The two lip-locked for almost fifteen seconds before Seven started forming conscious thought again. But this time, the chief was a step ahead. When Seven started to push the chief away, B'Elanna ran a hand down the front of Seven's uniform to cup one of her breasts. The blonde's eyes fluttered shut as she let out a strangled squeal. We watched as the Borg's legs gave out and the chief eased her down to the floor. The commander engaged in another passionate kiss but didn't remove her hand. All of us in engineering were mighty impressed. Well, at least until they broke apart.

"B'Elanna?" Seven whimpered sadly.

"Yes, Seven?" The chief whispered in reply.

"Please… please stop hurting me." Seven broke down into chest heaving sobs. We could see the tears falling from her human eye. God, we all felt like crap. I actually felt like going off and getting the crap beaten out of me just to make myself feel better.

"What?" B'Elanna asked is surprise.

"I know you hate me. Please, just leave me alone. I do not want to hurt anymore." Seven whispered through her tears.

Confusion reigned across the chief's face as she gathered the blonde into a comforting hug. "What are you talking about, Seven? I don't want to hurt you."

"You are like him. You will seduce me to 'teach me a lesson.'" She cried. "I am begging you, B'Elanna. Please leave me alone."

"Oh, Seven." The chief whispered giving the blonde a soft kiss on the top of her head. "That's not why I decided to pursue you. I have feelings for you. I just needed help to discover those feelings."

"No. I will not go through this again." Seven said in a stronger voice. "This behavior will stop now."

"Oh, Kahless. Who hurt you?" The fiery Klingon demanded.

"It is irrelevant. I will not experience that pain again." Seven declared, trying to break free of the Klingon's grip.

"I don't want to hurt you, Seven." B'Elanna promised.

"No. This will stop now." Seven shouted. With a mighty heave, the little Klingon went flying through the air to land on the ground ten meters away. By the time the chief shook her head free of the daze, Seven had fled. I reached over and turned off the monitor with a sick feeling in my stomach. Looking around at the other engineers, I noticed that there was an extreme lack of enthusiasm for our pet project. I know that I wanted nothing to do with it anymore.

We were all working hard when the chief came back to engineering. Well, at least we were pretending to be. She walked right up to me, grabbed my arm, and dragged me into her office.

"Find out everything you can about her past. Search every single listing having to do with Seven's history and report back to me. If you have to, get someone from computer maintenance to hack into the databases for more information." She growled at me. She was just a hair away from being absolutely livid. I could see her grinding her teeth together as she clenched her hands into fists.

Needless to say, I started working on my special project right away. There wasn't a chance in hell that I was going to tell the chief that what I was doing was against regulations. Not that I was afraid of her or anything, but I could see how much this was hurting her. Okay, so I was afraid of her too. Bite me. It was for the good of the team and all that stuff.

My first step was to drop by the headquarters of the betting pool. After searching through the database on who had bet and how much, I found two people that I could try to corrupt into helping me. One was an ex-hacker from computer maintenance and one was a security officer. After meeting with them both and explaining my problem, they both reluctantly agreed to help me.

What I found was enough to shock even the old pessimist that lives deep inside myself. It seems that Seven was played with hard and fast. Of course, we didn't know the whole story until we hacked into her personal logs.

While still on Voyager, Seven was courted and won by Commander Chakotay. The first thing he did when the ship arrived back in the Alpha quadrant was to marry her. She, being younger, innocent, and lonely, agreed. This bastard actually had the gall to hire a fake minister to do the vows. I didn't think anyone could be that low, but there it was. What he did next was the worst.

This guy took her to bed and had sex with her during a hectic week of 'consummating' the marriage. What she didn't know at the time was that he was recording their sessions from multiple angles. On the seventh night, he told her the truth about the minister and how he just wanted to have sex with her. This was the same guy that the crew of Voyager raved about. They were full of statements of how caring and compassionate he was. Anyway, after breaking her heart, he sold the recordings to a Ferengi who dealt with porn for mass reproduction and resale.

It turned out that the reason Seven joined Starfleet was to get away from the humiliation that now takes place every day back on Earth. Those damn porn holovids were spread around the Academy and other places she liked to spend time in. It also turned out that she had tried to commit suicide when her mentor found out about it. That was another kettle of worms. It turns out that this slime ball personally delivered a copy of the 'breakup' to Janeway while she was in prison. When Seven visited her the next day, Janeway had already seen it and the young woman had complete humiliation.

The whole thing made me sick to my stomach, and my two accomplices agreed. If we ever ran across that scum, he was a dead man. We sat around getting drunk for two days before I screwed my courage up enough for me to tell the chief about all of this. I honestly thought that she was going to beat me senseless. And to tell the truth, right then I wouldn't have minded a bit. I felt guilty over violating her personal logs and discovering her secret.

Instead, the chief just sat there and stared at me. I could tell that she was in shock, but she didn't say anything. As I continued telling her about Seven's history, I watched in dismay as tears coursed down both of those cheeks. She didn't sob or breakdown, she just sat there and listened to me, with those tear tracks marking her beautiful face. God, I felt even worse. We decided to 'celebrate' by getting drunk. The hangover the next morning was like divine punishment that we both wallowed in. If it wasn't for my new friend from computer maintenance, I don't think either one of us would have been fit for duty the next day. Instead, Nancy put us both back together and sent us on our way after extracting a promise from me to come back and visit her so she could get drunk.

The chief was silent that day. She stayed in her office and stared at the wall. I knew that we were in orbit around a planet, so nothing was going on. Being bored out of my mind, I flipped the illegal monitors on and saw Seven in astrometrics. She was all alone, diligently punching commands into the computer. Apparently, she had dismissed everyone else and threw herself into her work. I couldn't really blame her for that one. It was a device that I had used many times in the past to get over emotional trauma's.

This time, though, I just studied her. She still had that arrogant expression plastered to her face, but something was off. I watched her as she went through the motions of her duty, and she moved like she was a machine. That's when it hit me. Like a bolt of lightening out of the blue, sudden understanding flooded my mind as I sat up in shock. She wasn't being arrogant, she was being afraid. After reviewing her history on Voyager, I knew that her greatest fear was not fitting in. The fear of being the perpetual outcast had to have influenced her. And now I could see the results. That wasn't pride being reflected in her stance, it was fear. She looked like a lost, broken doll. She was so perfect in appearance, but so very fragile in reality.

Hearing a noise behind me, I turned my head to see the chief standing there, watching the screen with me. She slowly reached out a hand to trace the girls features on the monitor and looked absolutely heartbroken.

"Go to her." I whispered. "She needs you."

"No, I don't think so." Was the whispered reply. "She can't trust me or anyone else."

"She cares for you, chief, even if she doesn't know it." I told her.

"She's so frightened that she's locked her heart up." The chief whispered sadly. "Unless she can find the key, she'll push anyone away that tries to get too close."

"Then don't give up. Don't ever get up." I growled at her as I stood up and walked out the door. I didn't know where I was going, but I found myself in Nancy's quarters not fifteen minutes later. We took one look at each other and proceeded to get very drunk, very quickly.

I'm not sure exactly what happened that night because the alcohol stole my memories from me. I do know that after getting drunk enough that I could barely stand, I went to see Seven. I can only remember bits and pieces of the conversation, and I tried to commit them to this story as best as I could.

"… she loves you, Seven."

"She would die to protect you."

"The chief wants to kill that scum for what he did."

There was more along those same lines, but I can remember the last thing she said to me as she showed me out of her own quarters. "I will not hurt like that again."

When I sobered up enough to regain consciousness, it was to that awful door chime that Starfleet insists on installing on every single freaking door in the ship. Bloody awful sound, that is. When I opened it, I found Nancy fidgeting before she grabbed me and ushered me back inside.

"Seven's requested a transfer to another ship." She told me without preamble.

"Huh?" Was my intelligent and witty rejoinder.

"Seven's requested a transfer to another ship." She said again, giving me that stare that women always get when they're saying something that doesn't make sense but you're supposed to understand it anyway.

"Why the hell would she do that?" I snarled as I made my way over to the replicator to get some cold water.

"She found out that we know her story. She's running." Nancy told me.

"Oh, shit. I talked to her last night! The chief's going to kill me!" I wailed trying to get a little pity and sympathy from her to help with my hangover.

"You what?" She screeched, her voice stabbing me in the head. I just moaned in reply, both hands holding my throbbing head in a desperate attempt to keep my brain from exploding. "How could you do something so stupid? Did you go out of your way to humiliate people or did you have to study? Does your brain even work?" Apparently she missed my moan of pain, so I moaned again. "Oh, don't even try to get out of this because you're head hurts! You're going to talk to B'Elanna before that damned Borg can run off and break her heart!"

I looked at her incredulously. "Why don't you talk to her? She'll rip my head off if I do it"

"Probably raise your intelligence level is she did." Nancy muttered to herself as she helped me get dressed and shoved me out the door. I chose not to lower myself to her level and didn't say a thing.

My worst fears about the chief were correct. Not that I would ever get the chance to say 'I told you so' to Nancy, but I felt better knowing it. After the chief punched me and I had myself transported to sickbay, I had to get the rest of the story from someone else. Luckily, the gang in engineering was watching everything that happened.

After I disappeared, the chief activated a program that transported herself and Seven to holodeck four. Seven wasn't very pleased to find herself in what appeared to be a holding cell with the chief.

"Commander, why am I here?" She stated in a frozen voice, drawing herself up to her full height.

"I wanted you here to hear my apology, Seven." The chief whispered, not raising her head to look at the ex-drone.

"Very well. You may proceed, Commander." Was the stiff response.

"Thanks for making this so easy for me, Seven." The chief said wryly before becoming serious. "I had to find out who hurt you. It was tearing me up inside that you went through all that pain and I couldn't help. There was so much that I wanted to know and I didn't think that you would tell me. I thought that you and Chakotay went your different ways. I had no idea that he was the type of vindictive scum that would do something like this to you. When you said that someone hurt you, I just naturally assumed you meant someone else. I was shocked to see who and how you were hurt." B'Elanna said quietly.

"So, I ordered my staff to find out everything that happened. I know it isn't much, but I reported it to Starfleet command. Those holovids will automatically erase themselves once they are plugged into any Starfleet display unit. I'm so sorry that you were hurt, Seven. I didn't know he was like that." The chief finished up.

"Apology accepted. Now if you will release me, I must report to my new duty station." Seven said, not relaxing her posture one little bit.

"Seven, I don't want you to go." B'Elanna told her as the Klingon searched those blue eyes. "I love you and I want you to stay with me."

Seven's eyes widened at the admission before narrowing once again. "No. This will not happen. I freely accept that I will remain alone. I will not be tricked again."

The chief walked over to stand in front of the blonde before sinking to her knees. Looking up into that curious face, the chief began speaking in a calm and clear voice. "Seven, I'm doing something that I swore I would never do. I'm begging you to stay here. If you don't want to be with me, that's fine. I won't force anything on you. I'll wait until you're ready and you let me know that I can proceed. Until then, at least let me have your friendship. I'm begging you, Seven."

"Klingons do not beg." Seven whispered as she stared at the dark haired beauty kneeling at her feet.

"This Klingon does more than just beg, Seven." B'Elanna told her firmly. "If you wanted me to, I would renounce my house. I'm prepared to do it right here and now so you'll know that I'm serious."

"I… you… " Seven paused for a second to collect herself before trying again. "That will be unnecessary, Commander."

"Will you tell me your decision?" The chief asked her.

"I… will stay." Seven whispered, closing her eyes as if she were hoping she would never regret it.

"Oh, thank Kahless!" Breathed the Klingon in thanks. "You might become angry at me sometimes, but I promise that you won't forget it, Seven. You have my word of honor on that."

"Very well. I will hold you to your word, Commander." Seven whispered and licked her lips. She opened her eyes to find the Klingon now standing in front of her.

"Please call me by my name, Seven." The chief told her quietly. "Names are important among friends."

"Explain." Seven ordered.

"If you continue to call me by my rank, you won't see the person inside me that loves you." Was the whispered answer.

So, they began dating. Very chaste dating, but there you have it. According to the vast network of spies we had installed around the ship, they didn't even kiss. It took at least ten dates before Seven allowed the chief to hold her hand on their date. Me and Nancy went a hell of a lot quicker. Ever since she chewed me out while I was hung over, Nancy just seemed to move into my life and took it over. Before I knew it, the chief was grinning at me while I stood stunned before the Captain saying those two little words that men absolutely hate. I felt my knees turn to jelly, my skin started to sweat, a lump appeared in my throat, but I still managed to get out those two, nasty, evil words: I do.

Anyway, back to our two heroes. The dating was going slow. Seven accepted, on average, about one and a half dates a week. The entire crew was getting fed up with them, and the amount being wagered on it was approaching unbelievable proportions. I found out that over twenty ships and ten star bases were in on the racket. Of course, I found this out when we were docked at DS9 and I went into this place called Quarks. There on the rear wall, in larger than life writing, was different dates that the two would consummate their relationship and the running odds that matched them. I was stunned. I knew that gossip traveled faster than warp speed, but this was ridiculous.

It was at DS9 that the chief ran across Chakotay, no longer a Starfleet officer. It seemed that Seven wasn't the only one he did the frame up on, and his past was waiting for him when he finished playing around with our favorite ex-drone. I guess getting hit with twelve paternity suits at once can be pretty trying for a guy, but it didn't help him with the chief at all.

She beat the stuffing out of the scumbag. Then she transported him into the holodeck that was currently playing an old Terran sport called boxing. When he tried to press charges, Odo investigated the entire affair. Clearing the chief of all charges (the computers said that she was on a date with Seven at the time… thanks to Nancy), he found out that Chakotay was currently under a 'bench warrant' to be brought back to Earth and nine remaining paternity cases that were decided in absentia because he decided to run. I guess there is justice in the world.

The next several days, they pretty much kept to themselves. Once we hit space again, I was shocked at what I saw. Near the end of the duty shift, Seven came walking into engineering wearing an angry bite mark on her cheek. She made no attempt to hide it at all. She just walked right through the doors to stand in the middle of the department and looked around. Not finding what she was looking for, she threw her head back and screamed at the top of her lungs. "B'Elanna!"

The chief came running out from behind the warp core to come to a sliding halt in front of Seven.

"Seven, what's wrong?" She asked in a huff.

"Your duty shift ended eight point four minutes ago. Why are you still here?" Seven asked while narrowing her eyes in suspicion as she eyed the Klingon up and down.

"Um, I just wanted to finish up this project that I was working on." I couldn't believe it. The chief was stammering and looking everywhere but at Seven. Throw in the blush, and it was hilarious. Not that I would laugh at her, you understand. I wouldn't want to hurt her feelings. Okay, so I wouldn't want her to hurt me, but it was the thought that counts.

"Is the project of critical importance?" The blonde asked.

"Well, no, not really." B'Elanna said, looking embarrassed. "I just wanted…"

Seven cut her off abruptly. "You may play with the engines tomorrow. You are needed at home now."

"Seven!" The chief hissed, looking around to see if anyone could hear them. She appeared mortified that several of us could.

The blonde eyed the Klingon for a few seconds, before nodding her head. "Very well. I will offer you a choice… you may satisfy your engines or you may satisfy me."

The Klingon looked startled for a moment before she laughed out loud. "Okay, Be'nal. Let's go home and get you satisfied." She said as she grabbed Seven by the arm and dragged her out of engineering.

We looked around at each other in shock before we all let out a loud 'whoop' of celebration. The next thing we were doing was scrambling to the computers to check out what dates we had all bet on.

No, I didn't win, but I learned a valuable lesson. Remember when I said that the command crew was clueless? Well, that turns out to be untrue. Captain Tuvok won the pool. The pot was worth enough for him to retire from Starfleet and return home to Vulcan. I've heard that he's since bought several ships and formed a transportation company.

I've found out a lot about our emotionless Vulcan. It seems as if he always viewed Seven as a daughter. Just before he retired, his last official act as a Captain in Starfleet was to perform the marriage ceremony for B'Elanna Torres and Annika Hansen. I would have sworn that I saw his lips curl slightly as he performed the ceremony, but it was so quick that I couldn't be sure.

Well, that's that. This is the entire story behind the wedding of the quadrant. You can forget all of those stupid books by people who didn't know. The news people were just as bad. Most of the facts have been distorted so that it appears as if the two of them fell in love at first sight. It wasn't a fairy tale romance and not everyone lived happily ever after. These are the true facts behind the romance.

You know, I never did learn how those news people got their facts all screwed up. It was pretty obvious that noone ever bothered to interview us little people. No, the only people that were ever interviewed were some Admirals in Starfleet Command, Captain Janeway, and a select few from the command crew right here on the Mercury. And lets face it, if it wasn't for the ridiculous betting on the relationship of the first Borg to join the Federation, you wouldn't care about reading this story now.

So with that, I bid you good night. Leave an old man in peace and let me get my sleep.

The End

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