DISCLAIMER: Paramount, Jeri Taylor et al. own Voyager. I assume Mr. Shatner owns himself. This is for fun, not profit. The songs here are all copyrighted by their original authors.
WARNINGS: I apologise to those who are fans of Mr. Shatner's vocal prowess. No offence intended. I actually like Mr. Shatner, and this is a light hearted tribute to some of his characteristics that have become parody material over the years. You know what I! Mean! Dammit! Scotty!
NOTES: This appeared out of nowhere. I had the song 'You Are My Sunshine' stuck in my head, and for some reason I really wanted to start singing it in a W. Shatner style, pauses and all, and it grew from there.
SONG LIST: 'You Are My Sunshine,' 'Hit Me Baby One More Time' (B Spears), 'Fallin'' (A Keys) 'More Than A Woman (Aaliyah) - all taken from my fictional album, W.Shatner does hits from the nineties and beyond.
The Shatner Directive
('denotes singing over the com')
Janeway was bored. Not just regular bored, either, this was the boredom that hung around like a bad smell, urging her to get up and do something but neglecting to give her any suggestions. It didn't help that she was absolutely exhausted after being on duty for around eighteen hours - another disaster appearing, another disaster averted and she'd been in the thick of things the whole way through. Where else was a captain supposed to be?
So now, she was sitting in front of the console in her quarters, idly surfing Voyagers' database. She'd already read through most of the history files and demolished the cultural database, and now she was half-heartedly looking for something that, in her seven years on board, she'd never seen before.
It was purely by chance that she stumbled onto a file, hidden under many others and heavily encoded. Her brow furrowing, all boredom forgotten, she tried to uncover it. Her fingers flew over the controls, breaking algorithm after algorithm yet more stood in her way.
Suddenly, a message appeared on-screen, triggered by her efforts.
'WARNING!' It read. 'DO NOT OPEN THIS FILE!'
Now Janeway was really intrigued. It had been hidden in the public database, so it couldn't be anything ship-threatening. What could someone want to hide so desperately and yet leave it where, if someone had been looking long enough, they could theoretically stumble over it?
She got herself a cup of coffee and briefly thought about calling Chakotay to share in the mystery, but then decided she wanted the challenge all to herself. Settling herself more comfortably, she began trying to crack the mysterious file once again.
Another message flashed up. 'PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT TO OPEN THIS FILE. I MEAN IT!' It read. She got rid of it and continued the work.
Slowly, she began to be able to piece together the reason it was in the public database. She'd uncovered a link from the file to the ship wide com-system, triggered to activate if the file was opened, which would have been a lot harder had it been stored privately. She'd tried to bypass it, but it was so intrinsically linked that she couldn't open the file without whatever it was being broadcast.
'IF YOU KNOW WHAT'S GOOD FOR YOU, YOU WON'T OPEN THIS FILE!' The next message read. Kathryn Janeway set her jaw and bypassed the warning - telling her she couldn't do something was tantamount to waving a large, very red flag in front of the bull you've just kicked and expecting it not to charge.
The chronometer in the corner of her screen caught her eye, and she was shocked to find she'd been working at it for two and half hours. She didn't even feel tired, although she knew she had to get some sleep. 'But,' she reasoned. 'I can always have more coffee when I get up.' She was just about to start tapping away again when klaxons started blaring, their appearance so sudden that she spilt coffee all over herself.
'Captain!' Harry's youthful voice sang out over the com. 'The alien ships have reappeared!'
'On my way!' Janeway barked.
When she finally got back to her quarters, she was so tired that she only thought about going back to her file for about three seconds before her head hit the pillow and she was asleep.
When she awoke, she felt refreshed…and ready to get back to her file. The aliens had been attacking periodically and for apparently no reason for about three days, and it felt good to have a distraction.
She got herself a nice hot cup of coffee and settled down at her desk once more. After an hours solid work, and three more increasingly desperate warnings, she knew she was close to cracking the file…if only she could find a way to disconnect it from the com-system…she wanted her discovery to be hers alone, not to mention the fact that she didn't even know what it was. Somehow, she had a feeling her crew might look differently at her if it turned out to be someone's kinky audio file she was broadcasting.
'PERHAPS YOU MIGHT TAKE THE TIME TO RECONSIDER OPENING THIS FILE?' The next automatic message said. 'BECAUSE I REALLY THINK YOU MIGHT REGRET IT.'
Ignoring it as always, she plodded on through the second to last set of safeguards. Truth be told, she was just a little worried about what it could be, because someone had gone to a lot of trouble to protect it. It must have been days of work to lock the file up like it had been.
Still, misgivings aside, she was extremely excited. A sense of pride flowed through her as she thought of all the codes she'd broken just to find out what the damn thing was.
'MY GOD YOU'RE STUBBORN,' said the next message. 'BUT AT LEAST YOU CAN'T SAY I DIDN'T WARN YOU.'
Janeway stifled a snort at the familiarity with which she was being addressed by an automatic message, but kept plugging away. Finally, after what felt like both several hours of work and ten years of anticipation, Janeway broke through.
Her screen went mad.
'WARNING! WARNING! WARNING!' The message flashed. 'YOU'VE REALLY BLOODY DONE IT NOW! WARNING!'
She watched, excited, as the programme booted up. She could see now that it was some sort of antique collection of songs. Why would anyone go to such lengths to hide them, and what for?
The same second as the first bars of a song started, another, final message appeared.
'I'M SORRY.' It said.
Janeway shrugged, a little disappointed as she recognised the beginning strains of 'You Are My Sunshine.'
Suddenly, her body began to shake. Her eyes became wide as a male voice started to sing, or possibly talk, along with the music.
('You…are my…SUNshine…my Only, sunSHine…')
Foaming at the mouth slightly, Janeway tried to keep the horrible music out by pushing her hands against her ears, but still the man - who couldn't hit the beat if he was standing on it and surrounded by metronomes - kept on, his unrelenting massacre of the song slowly melting her mind into mush.
('…You…make ME…Hap-p-p-y…when SKIES, oh, skies, yes…I SAID skieS…ARE grey…NOT black, no, JUST grey.')
Just before she passed out, she realised that in her haste to find out what the file had been, she hadn't taken the time to disconnect it from the ship-wide com…
In the mess-hall, there were scenes to turn the stomach of even the most battle-hardened soldier, or the most detached medic.
People were rolling around on the floor, trying to block out the noise, desperate pleas for help swallowed by the voice that continued relentlessly.
('You…ll, never, ever…ever…Know…dearHow…muchI…Looove…YOU, yes you…no, not her…')
The crew-members in their quarters fared no better. Many had been asleep when the voice insidiously slipped into their subconscious, causing nightmares the like of which had never been seen before. Where-ever anyone tried to hide, the man followed, crooning out words of love. Unfortunately, the man had the vocal range of a concrete slab, making the words sound as impassioned as a declaration of love to a tree.
('Please, PLease don't take…mySUN…shine away…')
In her quarters, B'Elanna Torres groaned and removed the pillow from her head. 'I swear, I will make Tom pay for this…' She mumbled as she heaved herself out of bed. 'What kind of asshole plays a joke like this after a twenty hour shift? Computer? Shut down whatever the hell is playing over the com-system!'
'#Unable to comply#' The computer said calmly. B'Elanna gritted her teeth and managed to grind out.
'Why the hell not?'
'#Command sequence 'WShat.exc' has been activated#'
'And how do I shut it down?' B'Elanna said. The singing was starting to get on her nerves.
A new song had just started, a thumping bass beat backed up with electronic noise and the sort of melody that made B'Elanna want to rip the speakers out of the walls. It didn't sound like any thought had been put into it, and she wasn't quite sure what the man singing was trying to achieve.
('Oh…babybaby…HOW…wasI…SUPposed…to………Know?') He managed, making it sound almost painful.
'#The programme 'WShat.exc' is only accessible from one console at this time#' the computer said after a pause.
'Where is the programme accessible from, computer?' B'Elanna asked, already pulling on some clothes.
'#Captain Janeways' quarters#' The computer responded immediately.
B'Elanna scowled when she heard that, wondering why the captain had let herself get involved with one of Tom's pranks. She left her quarters, and to her dismay the music continued, the man filling the ship with his…unique? voice. Why would Tom prank the whole ship? It did seem a bit…mean.
('My loneliness…is…killingme…oh,yes,Imust…CONFESS I still…Believe…')
B'Elanna shook her head, thinking that the lyrics were a very odd choice for a fully grown man to be singing.
When she approached the turbolift, she gasped. Harry Kim was lying half-in, half-out of the lift doors, convulsing slightly. She ran forward and turned him over, thinking him unconscious, but his eyes were wide with terror.
He seemed to see her, and his mouth opened, whispered words barely reaching her ears. 'Make it stop!'
Not seeing anything else she could do, she pulled him out and made him as comfortable as she could before jumping into the turbolift.
'Com…puter!' She said, then she stopped dead. 'Compu…ter!' She tried again. What was happening to her? Finally, yelling at the top of her voice, she managed. 'Computer! Deck Ten!'
'#Affir…mative#' The computer said. B'Elanna stared at it in horror before pulling herself together and tapping her com-badge.
'B'Elanna…Torres to anyone still…unaffected…' She managed, her voice wanting to create odd pauses in her sentences.
There was a moment of silence, and then, to her dismay, one voice replied.
'Anyidea what is…happening, dammit?' She said. Was it her or was her voice getting deeper?
In the background, the voice continued, the third song kicking into gear. ('I keep on…falling…yes, falling…althoughIneverhurtmyself…in and out…of love, yes love, with you…')
'No…but I have…traced the signalto captain…Janeways quarters…' Seven said. Was B'Elanna going nuts, or did Seven's voice sound unnaturally…cool?
'I will…meet you there,' B'Elanna said.
She wasn't surprised to see the ex-drone already waiting for her at the entrance to the captains private sanctum, but extremely surprised to see Seven wearing something other than her bio-suit. The ex-drone was wearing a yellow jersey and black trousers that reminded B'Elanna of an old-fashioned Starfleet uniform she'd once seen at the academy.
'What's…withthenew…outfit…alien babe?' She said, and then immediately slapped a hand over her mouth. Where had /that/ come from??
Seven turned, and instead of the tongue lashing B'Elanna was expecting, Seven grinned rakishly. Only the panic in her eyes belayed the truth of the ex-borgs feelings as she said. 'I found…mybio………suit could no longer contain…my form,' She said, lifting up the top to reveal a manly gut hiding beneath.
B'Elanna touched her slightly swollen belly in horror and then swallowed hard. 'We need…to find out what the hell! Is going…on!' She said, bypassing the captains lock quickly.
('Sometimes, only…sometimes…I love you, yes! You…sometimes you make me…ohso blue…look at me, can't you see I'm…blue?')
The headed inside, Seven's efficient gait transformed into a confident swagger. Come to think of it, B'Elanna's legs were trying to swagger a little…she bit off a curse but couldn't contain the next one when she saw the captain slumped by her desk, her body twitching occasionally. B'Elanna got her hands under the captains arms and pulled her to the couch, where she lifted her easily and laid the slight woman down.
B'Elanna stared down at the woman, who was pretty in sleep, and so suddenly it made her gasp she found she was fighting the urge to bend down the unconscious woman on the lips. She knew, she just /knew/ that the captain would wake up if she did that, which just did not make any sense! Something that cliched would never work!
Jumping up so quickly she almost flew over the coffee table behind her, she looked up to see Seven working at the console. Seven's eyes held a look that B'Elanna had never seen before, and the drone's jaw was set so sternly you could've broken bulk-heads with it…speaking of jaws…
'Seven…Areyou growing…stubble??' B'Elanna managed, running over to examine the blonde.
Seven ran a hand over her chin and they both heard the faint rasping. 'Yes…I believe…so, B'Elanna,' Seven said. 'And I can't! get…this programme to…stop!' She said, uncharacteristic venom in her tone. She bought a fist down onto the desk, making things rattle.
B'Elanna wanted to calm the other woman down, but instead she found herself sticking out her stomach and saying. 'We have! To find a….way!'
Suddenly, the computer screeched. '#Alien…ships on attack…vectors!!#' B'Elanna had never heard the computer sound so emotional before.
She shared a despairing look with Seven before her new-found gung-ho attitude reared it's head once more. 'To the! Bridge!' She said.
They strode through desolate corridors, only stopping once when they encountered the doc ministering to another fallen Voyager crew-member.
'Ah…Bones!' B'Elanna called out, completely baffled as to why.
The doctor looked up, his expression more sour than B'Elanna could ever remember seeing. 'Will you sort this mess out before I end up having to do it myself?' He snapped. 'I'm a doctor, not a fix-it-man, dammit!'
They quickly left him to it and hurried on their way.
The turbolift ride to the bridge was an awkward one, because B'Elanna kept catching Seven leering at her from the corner of her eye, and she was also having to batten down the urge to do the same - and more - to the ex-drone.
In the background, growing ever more intrusive, the man crooned on.
('because I'm more than…a woman…MORE thanalover, oh yes, more than a….woman…')
Listening to the lyrics, B'Elanna's face became a picture of barely contain horror, tinged with a healthy dose of disbelief for good measure. What was this guy on?
Seven strode back to face the view-screen, sticking out her stomach to accent her words. 'We will…not! Surrender!' She cried.
The female alien on the view screen looked taken aback, and for a good reason. Seven's hair was thinning somewhat and her belly had grown another inch on so, yet she was so commanding even the stubble on her chin vibrated with rage.
B'Elanna, standing in the background and still working on 'WShat.exc' from the science station, without conscious thought raised her head and cried, 'We will! Never give! up!'
Then she turned back to the problem, absently scratching the newly formed blonde stubble on her chin as she stared at the problem. Concentrate! Dammit! She thought, but the algorithms were beginning to look like another language. She had to stop herself shouting, 'I'm a captain, not an engineer, dammit!' Which was bizarre, because she /was/ an engineer, and a damn good one! Squinting at the screen, she made the algorithms swim into focus through shear force of will. She nearly had it…
('DOn't YOU...know! I'm! more thanawoman! More that....a lover!')
Out in front, Seven was leering at the female alien on the screen, winking furiously. 'Perhaps…thereis, another way…we can sort this out?' She said, running a tongue over her lips. The alien on the screen was now looking decidedly nervous.
'What has happened to your crew?' She asked suddenly, spying the fallen Gamma shift on the bridge floor.
Seven spared them a cursory glance. 'Obviously not! man enough…for the task!' She said, moving to slap herself on the chest in a manly manner, but her breasts got in the way.
'Now! Let…me tellyou! This!' She cried, running up to the view-screen so she was nose to projected nose with the female. The alien had to go crossed eyed to keep Seven in focus.
'We will…not Surrender! We will never…giveup! You can take…away our lives, but, you, can't…take away our freedom!'
'Well, actually-' the alien began.
'And…another! Thing!' Seven said, jabbing the view-screen viciously. 'If we…go down! We will take…you with us! Ramming speed!'
Without any manipulation of the command controls, the ship lurched straight to ramming speed, heading for the three alien ships. Of course, there didn't need to be anyone pushing the buttons, as someone like Seven - in her current state - was always connected to her ship in some mystical and oft unexplained way, able to tell if the slightest thing was wrong deep in the engine room by listening to the way the computer replicated cheesecake.
'Get us out of the way!' The female commanded.
'I can't!' Another alien cried. 'Something's wrong!'
As much as she wanted to just turn on the insolent little ship and blow it out of the water, the female alien took one look at Seven and felt unfamiliar fear burn new thoughts into her brain.
'We surrender!' She squawked, her expression both fearful and unbelieving. A few murmured 'We /what/?!!' could be heard from stations around the alien bridge.
The alien captain ignored them…there was just something so…appealing about this woma…ma…person staring defiantly at her from the other bridge.
She found her mouth forming a smile as she watched the blonde…person run a hand through their hair and grin. 'Perhaps we can…figure something out,' she said, unable to believe the words were coming out of her mouth.
Suddenly, the other woman - who was also becoming strangely appealing - let out a yelled 'I've got! It!' Immediately the music stopped.
The shorter one ran down onto the main bridge and smacked the other on across the back in a manly gesture of a job well done, but confusingly it was accompanied by a decidedly female cry of, 'I did it!'
The view-screen went blank, and the alien captain sighed, the spell broken. 'Back us off.' She ordered.
'No offence, captain, but why?'
'There's some new kind of officer on that ship, First Mate,' The captain said grimly, 'and I do not want to have to face him...I mean, her...I mean it again!'
'We did…it, Seven!' B'Elanna shouted, punching Seven victoriously in the shoulder.
The blonde grinned, and then turned on the smaller woman. 'Fancy coming back to my quarters?' She asked, waggling her eyebrows in what she thought was a subtle manner.
'I was just about to ask you the same thing,' B'Elanna husked.
They only got as far as the turbolift when, in the same moment, they both turned around, both grabbed each other and both tried to slam each other into the opposite wall, going for each others mouths in a masculine, domineering way.
They battled to be the one to jump the other when Seven's grip slipped, sending her falling into the arms of the smaller woman. B'Elanna immediately jumped on the ex-drone, pressing her mouth to Seven's as the doors shut.
'SO, you're telling me that this is all your fault?!' An incensed B'Elanna rounded on Tuvok in sickbay as the doctor attempted to remove the last of the excess hair from her face.
'Indeed,' the man replied mildly.
'Why? There are so many other things you could've incapacitated the crew with in the event of a mutiny!' She cried. 'Pulses, gases-'
He held up a hand to stop her tirade. 'They would have all required too much power or would have been too much of a significant drain on our resources. When our two crews first integrated, I did indeed suspect we would have a mutiny at on time or another. This method only required enough power to keep the com-system active indefinitely.'
'But why the odd messages, Tuvok?' Captain Janeway asked.
'If it had been anyone other than yourself, I believe they would have, as you would say 'got the message' after the first ten and stopped trying to access the file. And I wrote them in such a way because I did not want anyone tracing the file to myself.'
'And what about happened to Seven and I?' B'Elanna asked, hiking a thumb to where the doctor was removing the last of Seven's ample stomach.
'Unfortunate side effects,' the Vulcan admitted. 'But I hear that you two resolved your differences and managed to work together.'
/And that's not all,/ B'Elanna thought. She sat quietly through the rest of the examination and then, when they were allowed to leave, called out, 'Seven, wait up!'
They walked in silence after that until they reached B'Elanna's quarters.
'Should we tell them?' She said eventually after they'd stepped inside and sat down.
'Tell them what?' Seven inquired, shifting closer to B'Elanna on the couch.
'That, despite the many crewmembers who are going to have nightmares for years…at least one good thing has come out of this,' She said, reaching up and cupping the side of Seven's face.
Seven closed her eyes. 'You mean you do not think the escape from the alien species bent on our destruction was a good thing?' She inquired, but B'Elanna could hear the teasing in her tone.
She leant forward, and just as her lips were about to touch Seven's, she said. 'You know what I mean.'
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