DISCLAIMER: I don't own them. I'm just borrowing them for a bit. When I'm done I'll put them back right where I found them, honest. No ex-drones or human/klingon hybrids were harmed in the writing of this fan fic.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
I didn't know how I was going to tell her.
How do you tell the woman you pretend to love that you just came from the captain's bed?
Well, at least I don't think she'll kill me. Maim me maybe, but I think my life is safe.
She's going to be pissed for sure. We both care very much about each other, it's not love, at least not that real, forever, kind of love, for either of us. Don't get me wrong, I do love her, in my own way. To be totally honest, if we were anywhere else, we'd have never been more than friends to each other. She know's it too. She's pretty much said as much. I know this will hurt her when I tell her, but I don't think it will be a devastating thing. Infuriating for sure, but her pride will hurt more than her feelings. I hope. It's what she said just last week that has me scared. "Tom, I don't care who you want to sleep with, but you better make sure you've broken things off with me BEFORE you do move on."
Our deal. Our little concession to life in the delta quadrant. I can look and lust all I want, so can she for that matter, but no touching as long as we're with each other. I have just issued a major insult to Klingon pride. One simple rule and I broke it without a seconds hesitation. Who am I kidding? I'm a dead man.
"The last thing I saw was her fist rushing towards my face," I explained to the doc later in sickbay. The doc was surprised that she only managed to crack my jawbone. I was surprised to still be alive. With the advantage of acute Klingon senses, she'd smelled Janeway on me the second she came in the door. How is it that she could recognize such an intimate scent? I decided I'm not brave enough to ask about that, ever. One growl and a punch and that's the last I saw of her.
"The last thing I saw was her fist rushing towards my face," I explained to the doc the next day in sick bay. The doc was impressed. Seven had managed to completely break my jaw. When I went to B'Elanna's old quarters to give B'Elanna her things, Seven had answered the door. It seems the private quarters that Seven had recently acquired were B'Elanna's old quarters that she'd given up to move in with me. One break up later and Seven had a very unwanted roommate. B'Elanna is the one person on Voyager that Seven could never quite learn to tolerate. Finding herself sharing quarters with my volatile ex-lover was more than her ex-Borg tendencies were prepared to handle.
I think I'll hide in my quarters until we reach the alpha quadrant. If B'Elanna doesn't kill me, Seven will. All this because I just had to jump in bed with Kathryn.
I wonder what she's doing tonight?
I can't believe the two of them are actually sharing breakfast together. I'm in fear for my life. The captain has decided that our drunken one nighter was fun, but she doesn't want me coming near her again. And they're sitting there, as if they're best friends all of a sudden and shooting me the odd glare just to keep my anxiety levels at maximum. Harry had to reach over and punch my arm just to get my attention. I almost jumped through the ceiling.
"Serves you right!" he'd said. "You knew better than to mess around on B'Elanna. And everyone knows that pissing Seven of is almost as dangerous."
"Yeah, well how was I supposed to know that they'd end up having to share quarters. With a little luck they'll end up killing each other and I'll be safe." I'd shot back with.
"Actually, I think they were planning on settling the accommodation issue by killing you and freeing up some valuable real estate."
He looked so serious when he said that, I shivered involuntarily.
"Lucky for you they decided to try getting along instead." He'd finished, as my pulse dropped back to almost normal.
"Then why are they glaring at me?" I whispered, nodding in their direction.
"Because they both think you're an asshole." Harry had whispered back.
Later, much later, life returned almost to normal. B'Elanna and Seven managed to become friends. Neither of them spoke to me much. I didn't mind since I was still on the right side of the airlock. Harry had always been a friend to Seven, B'Elanna and me. I think it was him that kept B'Elanna and Seven from killing each other as they adjusted to sharing the same living space. I know he kept the two of them from doing me grave bodily harm. Not that I think I didn't deserve it. I know I did. I just didn't know it then, or I would have made some very different choices that night.
It was a few months later that things suddenly got tense again. Harry told me the story and he got it from B'Elanna herself. It seems Seven had really grown as an individual. With B'Elanna as an influence, she'd come a long way and had developed her personality more fully. She could laugh and joke with the best of them. She was still quite conservative and usually stayed her calm cool self. She could and sometimes did open up to an degree most would have though impossible not too long ago.
Seven had announced quite casually one evening as they were sitting around their quarters that she was in love with B'Elanna.
B'Elanna had panicked and had been hiding out at Harry's ever since.
I don't know what prompted me to do it. Maybe I was feeling slightly suicidal. Whatever it was I found myself at Harry's.
B'Elanna just looked at me like a bug under glass when I walked in. I could tell, one wrong word and I'd get squashed just like the insect she was comparing me to.
"Why are you hiding here?" I asked.
"Go away." she answered with a sneer.
"I hear Seven's in love with you." I remarked.
"Yeah? Well what does she know about being in love? A few months ago she barely knew about being human." She'd growled.
"So, go tell her that." I challenged.
If looks could kill, I'd have been dead, but I found out what I needed to know. Now came the tricky part.
"Would you like me to tell her for you?" I asked.
I took the snarl and forearm across the throat as she shoved me up against the wall, to mean `No'.
"Let me guess. You have feelings for her?" I managed to croak out.
When she let me go to pace the room, I spent a moment just enjoying the act of breathing.
"You love her." I stated.
"So what if I do? She's totally new to these feelings, to feelings of any kind. She told me she's in love with me and you and I both know how little that can mean." she said with a meaningful glance to me.
"What happens when she wakes up one day and decides that love is an unpleasant emotion best left alone?"
I knew exactly what she meant. Now I had to hope that I could say the right thing. I'd made a mess of the relationship we'd had. I had to try and do right by B'Elanna. And Seven for that matter. In the last few months both women were happier than I'd ever seen them.
"B'Elanna what we had wasn't the right kind of love and you know it. I did love you and I still do. But I was never `in love' with you and you were never `in love' with me. Seven may be new to all of this, but I can see that you're happier than you ever were with me. If she makes you this happy right now, then don't you think you owe it to both of you to see how far this relationship can go?" I was still standing and bloodless so I knew she'd decided to hear me out.
"I've never even kissed her and you're telling me that I should go offer her my heart to break as she sees fit? Maybe you weren't listening to the part about how she has absolutely no experience in this kind of thing." she was pacing as she said that.
She definitely has it bad for our resident borg.
"And maybe you're just not giving her enough credit. She may be new to a lot of things, but I do know that she never says anything unless she's completely sure of what she's saying. That woman has feelings for you like you have for her, and you know it, or you wouldn't be so upset right now."
She stopped dead in her tracks and just looked at me, so I kept talking. "Go talk to her. She loves you."
She left the room without a backward glance.
You know, standing here watching them exchange their vows, I've come to realize how nice it feels to do something right for a change.
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