DISCLAIMER: I do not own these characters. They are the property of Paramount.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Conversation in the Shaft
By Tina LaMarch


B'Elanna, fresh from the holodeck, bolted into the turbo lift just as the door began to close. She inwardly cringed as she realized she was not alone. The blonde Borg was in her at ease pose staring straight ahead, "Lieutenant."

"Deck 9. Seven."

B'Elanna huffed and moved her gym bag to the other shoulder as the turbo lift began to move again.

Then it stopped.

"Shit. Torres to Carey."

"Carey here Chief."

"Turbo lift just stopped. Do you…."

"Already got it on the board Chief. Gonna have to pull some stuff on this end to get the power back to that section. Twenty minutes."

B'Elanna looked out the corner of her eye at Seven, closed her eyes and sighed. "Fine. Don't dawdle. Seriously." She ran her fingers through her still damp dark hair and slid down the wall to sit.

"Seven sit. You are making me nervous, all loomy and stuff."

Seven looked down at the half Klingon and moved to sit rather stiffly against the far wall. They sat in silence for a minute before B'Elanna spoke up."So you gonna talk or do I snap you with a towel to get something out of you?"

"That would be unnecessary Lieutenant. Is there a particular line of conversation you wish to pursue?"

"What weird Borg thoughts were going through your head when we stopped? Not sure I want to know, but it might kill time."

"I was analyzing the data from the last scan of the nebula we just passed. I was attempting to localize the source of my difficulties in defeating the Captain in Velocity, and I was wondering if you would answer my question."

B'Elanna's head looked up from her digging expedition in her bag. "Question?" She asked feeling distinctly like she just spotted the chunk of meat in an old fashioned trap.

"What is the connection between linguistics and copulation?"

Whack! Whack! Whack! When was she ever gonna learn not to rise to the bait?

"I had," Seven continued, "asked Captain Janeway but she responded in a most unsatisfactory way. She pinched her nose and began to mumble about being too old for the bird and bees. You, while you are either aggressive toward me or dismissive of my feelings, nevertheless do not avoid answering my questions. So I wondered if you would answer that one."

"And this subject came your attention how?"

"Ensign Elisabeth Davies has been speaking to Tal Celes about asking me to join her in a non-nutritive eating ritual. She then made a remark that indicated that should the evening progress to non-reproductive copulation that she would show me the time of my life as she is a cunning linguist. She and Tal Celes laughed and then moved beyond the range of my auditory implant."

B'Elanna's jaw was somewhere in the vicinity of her belly button before she realized what it was doing and snapped it shut.. So not in her job description to teach sex ed but apparently someone needed to before Seven ended up over her head. 'Seven gets hurt,' thought B'Elanna, 'she will probably spend more time working, which means more time underfoot, which means I have cerebrovascular accident, which means sickbay time, which means she gets to assimilate my engines and I get spaced for killing her afterwards.'

"Seven, it refers to a um….form of sex that two women can engage in." B'Elanna groaned and rubbed her head. "Wasn't the doctor supposed to tell you all this?"

"He neglected to inform me that my options might include members of my own sex. Had he, I would have perhaps found that I had better options than those I believed I had."

"Captain, eh?" asked B'Elanna grinning.

It was Seven's turn to look flabbergasted. 'Oh my,' thought B'Elanna, 'This was totally worth the whole Whac-a-mole sensation earlier.'

"That would be inappropriate. She is my mentor and friend and Captain. Desist with that thought Lieutenant. I will not have you speak of her in that way."

"Cool your jets Borg. Just said it because you guys spend so much time together. "

"She is my friend," reiterated the distressed sounding Borg, "It is obscene to discuss her as if a physical relationship with a drone is an option. You will apologize."

B'Elanna held up her hands. "Ok Ok Seven calm down. I'm sorry I said anything. B'Elanna's face tightened a moment. "Wait, Seven, are you saying that a relationship with you would be obscene?"

"I am a drone. "

"Oooookay! I am not paid to counsel dumbass ex-Borgs but here is a nickel's worth of free advice- grow up! Would half the frickin' ship be ready to fall at your feet if you were in any way shape or form obscene? Um, a quarter maybe, a third tops! You are not the be all, end all of evil nastiness! You are beautiful and brilliant and when you decide to have a sense of humor or feelings you knock the shit out of me and anyone else with eyes and a quarter tank of common sense. Quit feeling sorry for yourself. Quit beating the shit out of yourself! Chill!"

Seven's ocular implant made its way toward her hairline. "Thank you Lieutenant," she said quietly.

"Ummmm no problem," replied B'Elanna blinking. 'Where the hell did that come from?' B'Elanna put her head down and started digging in her bag again 'cause looking for wayward bottles of water was much less confusing than the whole thing with the Borg..

When she looked up holding her bottle of water she saw Seven looking at her speculatively. "Lieutenant?"

"Yeah Seven?"

"If you think of me as more than a drone, why do you speak to me as you do in engineering?"

"You disrespect me by going over under and around me and I get angry. I respond in anger. I apologize if I made you feel as if you were less than the others around me."

"It was not your anger. I appreciated your honesty and I appreciate your current honesty. It was simply a question."

B'Elanna moved to sit next to Seven and passed her the water bottle she had been sipping from. Seven looked at her and back to the bottle in her hand. She raised it to her lips and drank a little. She was not particularly conversant with human behaviors, but she had come to a point where she recognized a gesture of good will.

They sat quietly for several more minutes before the turbo lift moved again. As B'Elanna moved to leave at her floor she stopped and turned. "Hey Seven."

"Yes Lieutenant?"

"I am probably not the linguist that Davies is, but would you like to join me for dinner about 2000?"

"I will comply."

"Good. Seven?"

"Yes Lieutenant?"

"I like turbo lifts, don't you?" B'Elanna grinned as she stepped back and let the doors close.

The End

Return to Voyager T/7 Fiction

Return to Main Page