DISCLAIMER: No profit is intended in the writing of this story. Star Trek: Enterprise and its characters are the property of Paramount and Viacom.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This story is an answer to the "Cliche Challange 2008" of the Passion & Perfection LJ-community and archive.. For this story I picked the cliche "Everyone thinks we're doing it."
BETA: rikkurd. Thank you so much. I don't know what I would do without you.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
T'Pol stood motionless, her feet flat on the floor slightly spread apart. She breathed slowly and steadily the only sign of strain was a drop of sweat running down her temple. She observed her opponent closely, watching for the small movement that would indicate a new attack.
Suddenly, and without any warning that she had foreseen, her opponent leapt forward with a shrill shriek. The Vulcan tried to sidestep her attacker, but was half a second too slow. Her opponent bumped into her hip, she lost her balance and in a heap of tangled arms and legs both hit the floor.
Her attacker struggled to straddle her hips and get a hold of her wrists to pin them to the floor. Nailed to the ground like this T'Pol knew that her opponent had the advance but one look to the face told her that her attacker was finished.. This last leap had been nothing but a desperate gesture of resistance before the end. The Vulcan knew that all she had to do to break free was using her superior strength throw her opponent on the floor, sneak her arm around the throat, and...
"That was well done, Ensign," she said instead. "That last leap surprised me and gave you an advance you could have used to 'finish me off'," she said and accentuated the last words.
Red faced and breathing heavily, Ensign Hoshi Sato looked down at the Vulcan. The slow movement of the other woman's breathing was a 'sure' sign that the Vulcan was barely phased by the last half hour of training.
Hoshi let go of the other woman's wrists and slowly stood up. With the back of her hand she wiped the sweat from her forehead and put a streak of hair behind her ear. "Did you just say 'finish me off'?"
T'Pol, too, stood up clapsing her hands behind her back and standing ramrod straight. "I heard Commander Tucker using this phrase. I thought it would be appropriate to use a colloquial term in this situation. Have I done it right?"
Hoshi smiled. "Yes, you have, ma'am. But I have never before heard you using colloquial speech."
"I thought it was appropriate," the Vulcan replied.
Hoshi waited for a further explanation but T'Pol turned away, grabbed her towel and headed for the shower next to the Gym.
Hoshi watched her for a moment. She couldn't resist but admire the smooth, cat like movements of the sub-commander and the slender form that went with it. "And thank you for giving me this hand-to-hand lesson," she muttered.
"There is no need to thank me, Ensign.."
Startled, the young woman looked back at the Vulcan who had turned around in the door to the shower.
"If you are interested we can set up a schedule and train together once a week," T'Pol contiued.
"Oh. Ahm, yes. Yes, that would be great. Thank you, sub-commander."
T'Pol nodded slightly and vanished through the door.
Smiling, the young human grabbed her towel and headed for the shower, too.
The next morning Hoshi sat on a table in the mess and sipped from a cup of tea. On a plate before her were the remains of her breakfast.
"Sub-Commander!" Hoshi smiled at the Vulcan standing before her, holding a tray. "Please, have a seat."
Gracefully T'Pol slide into the chair and put her tray on the table.
For a few minutes Hoshi watched the Vulcan eating from her fruit salad. "I can't understand how you make it through the day with only a bowl of fruit salad in the morning.."
T'Pol looked at the ensign. "You have to know about your needs so you can satisfy them properly.."
Hoshi smiled. She wondered if the Vulcan was aware of the dual meaning of her words. "Right, and again I thank you for what you showed me last evening. It was remarkable."
"You don't have to thank me, Ensign. Making you the offer was my decision. I thought it was time to make a move on you." T'Pol replied.
A muffled choking sounded from the next table but T'Pol ignored it.
Hoshi fought not to laugh. The young linguist smiled. She glanced at the other table and giving into temptation said, "You said you want to repeat our session on a regular basis?"
"What about once a week on Thursday evenings?" Hoshi suggested.
"That would be acceptable, ensign."
"Great," Hoshi exclaimed. She watched the Vulcan finish her breakfast and both women left the mess hall for the bridge.
They entered the turbolift and stood side by side facing the door.
"You were trying colloquial speech again?" Hoshi stated.
T'Pol lifted an eyebrow questioningly.
The young human smiled. "You said you 'made a move' on me."
"Yes," the Vulcan confirmed. "I assume it was not right?"
"Making a move on someone means to start a romantic relationship or to engage in sexual intercourse," Hoshi explained.
Again, the Vulcan lifted an eyebrow. "That would explain why Commander Tucker almost asphyxiated on his muffin."
"Indeed," Hoshi replied mimicking the Vulcan's posture.
T'Pol was just able to lift an eyebrow before the door to the bridge opened.
"Did you hear that?"
"Yes," Lieutenant Reed answered Trip Tucker's question.
Both men sat on the table right besides the one T'Pol and Hoshi had just left. The two men had watched them until the door of the mess hall had closed behind the women.
"T'Pol and Hoshi?" Tucker went on. "That's impossible."
"Why?" Reed asked.
"Because... Because..." Tucker sputtered.
"Because you thought you had any chances with...? Which of them, T'Pol or Hoshi? Or, maybe both of them?" Reed inquired.
"Because T'Pol gave me signs... I thought she was... Interested..." Tucker replied lamely.
"It seems you misunderstood something. After all Hoshi is the linguistic genius. I guess the communication between Hoshi and T'Pol works much better than everyone had thought."
"I haven't lost, yet!" Tucker stated firmly. "Piece of cake if I could do something."
"And why do you think this is a competion?" Reed asked.
"Because I just made it one!"
A week later Hoshi and T'Pol walked down the corridor side by side. "Crewman Fredericks," T'Pol acknowlegded a man walking past them.
"Ma'am. Ensign," he replied and nodded grinning.
Hoshi frowned as Fredericks disappeared around a corner. "Have you noticed that for the last few days almost everyone is grinning at us?"
"Indeed, Ensign," T'Pol replied. She had registered that everyone, but especially Commander Tucker, had shown an unusual amount of interest in her lately. Besides that, she had seen crewmembers whispering to each other only to fall silent when she approached them. Because of her superior hearing she had been able to catch snippets of the human's conversations. The comments were related to her and because she was used to this, T'Pol ignored them.
"Oh! Hey T'Pol! Wait a moment!"
Both women turned seeing Commander Tucker walking down the corridor towards them, with Lieutenant Reed following behind him.
"Commander. Lieutenant." the Vulcan greeted the men.
Hoshi nodded at them.
Tucker smiled, but paid the communications specialist scant attention. "I would like to ask you if you want to come with me to the movie night tomorrow evenning, T'Pol."
"No," the Vulcan replied bluntly.
Tucker seemed to be baffled about the short dismissal. "But I have... I mean, I thought... We could have a nice evenning. Watch a good movie and afterwards I would walk you back to your quarters."
"Please excuse us Commander, Ensign Sato and I have an appointment." T'Pol nodded at Reed and then turned heading down the corridor.
Hoshi smiled at Reed, nodded at Tucker and hurriedly followed the Vulcan.
Tucker stood rooted to the spot staring after the two women. As Reed laid his hand on his friend's shoulder Tucker jumped, startled. "So much for your competition," he said pitiful. "It seems you never had a chance."
Tucker waved his hand in the direction the two women had vanished. "But... I have already talked the Chef into cooking dinner for us..."
Reed only nodded.
"She can't do this... I mean, why Hoshi and not me...?" Tucker whined.
Reed shrugged. "Maybe she likes women more than men? Maybe she likes Hoshi more than you? Maybe the Big Bird of the Galaxy doesn't like you?"
Tucker turned slowly to face his friend. "The big what?"
Hoshi writhed on the mat in the Gym holding her shoulder; she rolled back and forth and ground her teeth together in pain.
"I am sorry, ensign." T'Pol said while kneeling beside the young human. She just had thrown Hoshi on the mat over her shoulder and the human had crashed down in such an unfortunate angle that she had strained her shoulder.
"No. It wasn't your fault. I should have warmed up more thoroughly," Hoshi managed through her teeth.
T'Pol put her hands on the human's shoulder and applied a certain amount of pressure to the nerves. She felt Hoshi relaxing under her treatment.
The young woman exhaled deeply and slumped as the pain suddenly vanished. "God! That's wonderful," she moaned.
"I am greatful I could help. But nevertheless I should take you to sickbay. I have only surpressed the pain perception.. It will not last long," T'Pol replied.
"Whatever you did, it's working," Hoshi said as T'Pol lifted her to her feet with ease.
"It is a technique of Vulcan neuro-pressure," the older women explained as she guided Hoshi out of the Gym.
Crewman Menendez turned away from the door and quietly walked back to the locker room. She wanted to give the two women in the Gym some time to recover. Menendez had entered the Gym to spend some time on the treadmill; and to see if the rumoures about Ensign Sato and Sub-Commander T'Pol were true. Oblivously they were! She had seen the Vulcan kneeling behind Sato holding the human while the ensign moaned in pleasure.
Menendez grinned. Now she could prove the rumoures about the two women and she would collect a great part of the betting pot!
Dr. Phlox studied the scanner readings from Hoshi's shoulder and hummed. "There's nothing serious. A few more treatments of vulcan neuro-pressure and a proper warming before engaging in hand-to-hand combat from now on and everything should be alright."
"Thank you, Doctor," Hoshi said smiling at the Denobulan.
"Doctor," T'Pol acknowlegded Phlox' advise. "I will set up a schedule with Ensign Sato to treat her shoulder."
Phlox grinned. "I guess that wouldn't be a problem with your relationship."
T'Pol quirked an eyebrow at that and Hoshi looked confused. "What kind of relationship, doctor?" The Vulcan asked.
"The both of you having an affair," Phlox replied still grinning. "It is very interesting. Maybe you will answer some questions about inter-species relationship? But only if you have the time. No need to rush something."
"Doctor, I can assure you that we are in no such relationship," T'Pol stated firmly. Her expression never changed.
"Right," Hoshi agreed. "That's absurd.."
"Realy? The whole ship has talked about nothing else for the last few days." Phlox looked confused from one woman to the other.
"Really?" Hoshi replied.
"Can't believe it," Phlox shook his head. "You two seemed such a nice couple."
"Well, we're not," Hoshi declared and both women left sickbay.
Phlox scratched his chin and shook his head. "No," he finally decided. "They must be a couple." He sat down on his desk, activated his computer and accessed the betting pool to check the quotes.
Hoshi sat on a workstation in one of the ship's labs and wrecked her brain over some information about Andorian dialects she had gathered from the Vulcan database.
The doors whooshed open and Hoshi's friend Elizabeth Cutler strolled in. "Hi," she greeted.
"Hi," Hoshi waved at her and then turned her eyes back on the screen.
Cutler put a mug with steaming cocoa in front of Hoshi and plopped down in a chair besides her friend.
Thankful, Hoshi smiled at her and took a delicate sip from the hot liquid. "Thanks."
"No problem." Cutler replied cheerfuly. "So, doing some research?"
"Yep. Andorian dialects. T'Pol showed me some very interesting entries in her people's database," Hoshi said while scrolling through the info on the screen.
Elizabeth grinned. "So, it's T'Pol, huh?"
"Sure. Whoever else?" The young linguist replied absently.
"Then it's true? You guys are together? Congrats, hon." Cutler slapt her friend with the back of her hand on the thigh.
"What? No! Why does anyone think we are together?" Hoshi asked agitated.
Elizabeth lifted her hands defensively. "Just repeating what the rumour mill says. The last thing I heard was that you and your girlfriend got it on in the Gym."
"Wha--?" Hoshi couldn't believe it. "Liz, do you realy believe that T'Pol would have sex in a public place like the Gym?"
Baffled, Cutler blinked. "Ah. I don't know..."
"She wouldn't; neither would I. I can assure you that," Hoshi explained. "She gives me hand-to-hand lessons and I hurt my shoulder. She helped me and that's all."
"Really?" Cutler asked.
"Really," Hoshi confirmed.
"Well, then...," Elizabeth said crestfallen. "But you two are such a nice couple."
"Thank you. But we are not." Hoshi stated.
"Okay. Sorry. Didn't mean to offend you," Cutler apologised.
Hoshi squeezed her friends hand slightly and smiled. "You haven't," she assured.
Elizabeth, too, squeezed Hoshi's hand and left.
The young woman shook her head, took another sip from the cocoa and turned back to her work.
Hoshi sat Indian style on a mat in T'Pol's quarters. She wore only sweatpants; her upper part of the body was bare as were her feet. Her chin rested on her chest, her eyes were closed and her hands rested in her lap. She enjoyed the Vulcan's hands doing magic to her shoulder.
T'Pol knelt behind the young woman wearing only sweatpants and a tank top. She massaged the knots out of Hoshi's muscles and the Vulcan could feel the young human relaxing under her careful treatment.
"The crew believes we are in an intimate relationship," Hoshi suddenly said.
"Based on current circumstances, I would say they are right." T'Pol replied.
Hoshi chuckled. After all, she sat half-naked in the Vulcan's quarters having the other woman's hands all over her - almost. "They think we had sex in the Gym,"
The Vulcan lifted an eyebrow about that, because of the time she had spent aboard the ship she had already registered that humans spent a lot of time thinking and talking about sexual intercourse. "Then I think we should inform the crew that we did not have sex in the Gym."
"Should we give a statement over the ships speaker system or should we do it personaly in the mess hall?" Hoshi ask grinning.
Without stopping her treatment of Hoshi's shoulder T'Pol thought about the human's suggestion. "Neither sounds acceptable," she finally decided.
"I have already talked with Liz Cutler. She's a good friend and the ship's biggest gossip. I'm sure the rumor mills already spreading the news about us not having sex in the Gym." Hoshi said slowly while the Vulcan's hands trailed down her spin causing her to arch her back slightly and moan in pleasure as T'Pol stimulated certain nerves. "That's wonderful," Hoshi whispered enjoying the warmth rushing through her body.
T'Pol stopped the massage and rested her hands in her lap. "We are finished for now."
Hoshi turned around facing the other woman. She didn't try to cover herself.
T'Pol looked openly at Hoshi's bare breasts and admired the human's slender form for a moment. "We are drifting more and more into lying," she said quietly.
Hoshi leant forward and took the Vulcan's hands. "I know you are not ready to tell them, yet, love. We will wait until you are.."
T'Pol looked Hoshi in the eyes. "I know we will have to tell our families and the crew eventually. I just want to wait till we have discovered the parameters of our joining."
They had joined in different ways.. They had started talking about their cultures. From this point it was only a short step to talking about their families. The first time Hoshi told the Vulcan about an embarrassing little secret from her childhood it had earned the human a lifted eyebrow. But only a few days later T'Pol had told her new friend a similar story from her own childhood and both women had recognized that they had a lot in common. After one of these late night talks Hoshi had found herself surprised by T'Pol's invitation to stay for the night.
Hoshi smiled and leant forward. She took the Vulcan's hands and squeezed them slightly. The young woman knew that T'Pol was not ashamed of her, and she certainly didn't fear the reaction of the crew. A while ago the Vulcan had admitted to her that she secretly admired the tolerant mindset most humans showed; but T'Pol knew that her own people and her family would not react well to her having a relationship with a non-Vulcan. They hadn't taken the last step, yet, but T'Pol knew already that she would give herself completely to the younger woman.
Slowly the Vulcan lifted her hand and touched Hoshi's cheek. The human closed her eyes enjoying the warm and tender touch. They had touched each other so often in the past but this time it was different. Both women felt it. Hoshi didn't move as T'Pol let the tips of her fingers trail down her cheek to her throat. Hesitating for a moment on the human's shoulder T'Pol decided to take another step. She let her hand wander down the younger woman's chest until she reached the swelling of Hoshi's breast. The young human's breathing increased at the Vulcan's touch. Slowly T'Pol moved her hand a little more and then she cupped Hoshi's breast; never before she had touched a non-Vulcan in this way; and even with Vulcans' her experience was only marginal. She felt the hard nipple against her palm and Hoshi inhaled sharply. She pressed slightly into the touch increasing the contact. T'Pol was fascinated from the feeling and the reaction she had caused. It felt different from her own body and yet natural. She looked at Hoshi's face and registered the closed eyes, the slightly open lips and the fast breathing. The Vulcan herself was feeling her body reacting to the situation but tried only halfheartedly to suppress the feeling.. Slowly, she let go of Hoshi and folded her hands in her lap. She waited.
Hoshi opened her eyes and looked at the other women. Her heart was beating fast and she felt a comfortable heat in her whole body. She smiled. Finally she took her shirt and pulled it over her head.
"Do you want a cup of tea?" T'Pol asked and stood up, gracefully. She went to a small commode she used as a makeshift kitchen for her tea. She knew that such intimacy was deemed inappropriate among her people. But she knew it at this special moment it had been right. It was confusing.
Hoshi followed her. Still she almost could not believe how far T'Pol had gone. Her touch had been tender and hesitant and exploring and it was on of the most erotic things Hoshi had ever experienced. She stepped directly behind the Vulcan and saw a slightly twitch in T'Pol's shoulders as the older woman reacted to her. "T'Pol?"
Slowly the Vulcan turned around.
Hoshi stepped even closer until their bodies touched.
T'Pol again felt her body react and this time she did nothing to suppress it. She let Hoshi wrap her arms around her waist and snuggle into her. T'Pol felt her breath increase as Hoshi came nearer and nearer. The Vulcan closed her eyes as Hoshi brushed her lips over the Vulcan's. The soft touch lasted only for a second but sent a wave of pleasure through T'Pol's body.
Fascinated Hoshi saw the flicker in the Vulcan's face. It meant so much to her that T'Pol had let it happen. Again she leant forward. The kiss became hungry. T'Pol closed her arms around Hoshi. The kiss went on and on. Lips parted, tongues touched until the need for air demanded a parting.
Smiling Hoshi stepped back holding both T'Pol's hands. "Wow."
The Vulcan lifted an eyebrow. "Indeed."
"We should do this again", Hoshi finally stated.
"Yes", the Vulcan replied simply.
Hoshi let go of the Vulcan's hands and sat down on the couch curling her legs under her. She watched T'Pol make the tea and serve her a cup. Both sat in comfortable silence sipping from their tea.
That night, Hoshi didn't leave her lover's quarters.
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