DISCLAIMER: Star Trek Voyager and its characters are the property of Paramount. No infringement intended.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Part one of the Voq Je Bang 2012 Monthly Challenge. 1) Write a one-part fic each month, on any theme. 2) Each fic must be linked to the preceding one although it cannot be a continuation of the previous month's story. 3) At the end of the year, the work should be twelve separate one-shots linked together by a narrative with a beginning, middle and end.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To dehickey[at]hotmail.com

The Trials of Herculanna and Sevcules
Part 3: The Golden (Be)Hind

By Gemini1179


Curled up together in the most comfortable golden fur blanket- a blanket that B'Elanna had finagled out of an exotic trader they encountered in the last system they travelled through- both B'Elanna Torres and Seven of Nine let out small sighs of contentment after another long day in the Delta Quadrant aboard the U.S.S. Voyager as it made its way back home. This was B'Elanna's favourite time of the day. The same could likely be said for Seven who had never known the true closeness of personal contact before she had finally set her sights on the short (tempered?) brunette that ran the Engineering department on Voyager.

"What do you call a group of Q's?" The question was innocent enough and barely above a whisper as B'Elanna snuggled further into Seven's embrace, inhaling her scent and placing light kisses along the statuesque blonde's enticing neck. It still garnered Raised Metallic Brow Variation Three- Amused Confusion in response from Seven of Nine, former Tertiary Adjunct to Unimatrix Zero-One though.

"I believe, Bang'wI, that that is the definition of a non sequitur. Were we not just talking about the power transfer rates in the Warp core?" Seven knew she was intelligent and she knew she could multi-task, but conversations that did not follow direct lines of thinking always frustrated her in some small way as she usually felt as if she were missing some deeper meaning to the practice that all sentients aboard Voyager seemed to just 'get'.

"We were, now we're not. Besides, you and I argue about Engineering stuff all day, I just want to enjoy our alone time a bit with some non-work related conversation." B'Elanna perked up a bit smiling mischievously and climbed atop her blonde beauty, moving the blanket off them and straddling her hips while continuing to pepper the porcelain skin with small kisses.

"Your current activity suggests you would like to enjoy our time in a manner that does not require coherent dialogue." Seven's heart rate had begun to climb as her body reacted to the attention and touch it was receiving with the same intensity it always did with B'Elanna.

B'Elanna loved how undone she could make her lover with a little attention and smiled a bit at the soft shudders that rippled through the lithe form beneath her after each kiss. But her intentions this time were not to begin a prolonged lovemaking session. She snickered lightly. "I can multi-task. You just lie there and enjoy things, I promise I won't bite-"

"I have no issues with biting." Seven interjected, breathless.

"-hard." Another shiver surged through the increasingly aroused ex-Borg. B'Elanna stifled a giggle as she began to pepper each piece cybernetic evidence of Seven's time with the Borg with kisses knowing it always made her blonde beauty relax and feel truly loved.

"I'm serious though, it's been bugging me for a while now." B'Elanna had propped herself on her right elbow and gave Seven a quick smile and wink before getting back to 'work'.

Seven was torn between full-body arousal and confused incredulity. "You are being serious." It was a statement. "Why has the linguistic term defining a 'group' of the entities known as the Q 'been bugging' you for a while?" Seven's hands had decided that they were not going to be left out of this encounter so they began to softly caress any and all tanned flesh they could.

B'Elanna stopped her ministrations and climbed up her lover's nude form to look into her blue eyes. She shrugged. "Dunno. We're always having to deal with Q and all- including his pervert son- and… I don't know, it just popped into my head one day and I haven't come up with a great answer. I thought the Collective may have had a term for them or something."

Deciding not to comment on the Borg Collective's policy regarding 'irrelevant' information, Seven nonetheless searched her eidetic memory to see if there indeed was a term defining a group of the Q.

What Seven didn't realize was that during her time spent with B'Elanna she had adopted the occasional habit of sticking her tongue partially out of the side of her mouth when she was thinking on an 'irrelevant' subject while completely relaxed. B'Elanna loved it and loved that she was the only one who ever got to see the beautiful ex-Borg with her hair down, splayed about their pillows and her tongue sticking out in thought as her hands traced unconscious symmetrical and geometric patterns on the nude form of her half-Klingon lover.

"The Borg knew of the Q but other than the fact that they were unable to assimilate them or affect them in any way, there is no relevant data on what a 'group' of the Q may be called."

"Huh, so I guess if a Q ever showed up on a cube they wouldn't get the whole "Resistance is futile" spiel then, huh?"

It was a curious thought. Seven concluded that it was unlikely due to the fact that the standard Borg first communication was done over the full spectrum of hailing frequencies when they encountered a vessel or colony they deemed distinctive enough for assimilation. Since Q did not use space-faring vessels for travel, the idea had never been put to the test.

"There is only one recorded interaction between a Q and the Borg that I know of. A single drone attempted to assimilate the Q. The Q laughed and turned the entire compliment of drones on the cube into four-legged Tuchankan Vorcha for three minutes before disappearing. The cube suffered damage to several key systems as a result of the stoppage in maintenance and all other work on the cube due to the Q's intervention. Standard protocol of the Collective was to ignore the Q from then on."

B'Elanna paused her ministrations once more, "Huh… so what about… a 'spell' of Q's?" The cocky grin earned her a small growl and return grin from Seven before she claimed her brunette's lips in a forceful kiss. As the moment grew into minutes, B'Elanna was beginning to suspect her lover was trying to distract her. She was right. Seven had been thinking long and hard about the question, but she also concluded that B'Elanna really just wanted to have a bit of a 'silly' conversation. She would not disappoint her lover.

"Keeping the theme, I put forth an 'alphabet' of Q's for consideration." Seven pulled back from a now thoroughly flustered B'Elanna and deadpanned her reply as best as she could. The sudden smile and sound of laughter that burst forth from B'Elanna was the exact reaction she had hoped for. Her own smile bloomed as the small very naked brunette shook in laughter above her.

"Kahless Soch, you are priceless. I love you and I am so happy you put up with my insanity."

"It is not difficult, you rarely attempt the same action under the same circumstances while expecting a different result," at B'Elanna's I-know-there-is-an-engineering-jab-in-here-somewhere look, Seven couldn't help her own smirk, "unless it is entering an incorrect dilithium matrix mixture ratio."

"There it is. You're lucky I'm crazy about you."

"Indeed I am. Considering my own… insanity while pursuing you…" Seven looked away briefly, momentarily caught up in old thoughts. A gentle hand on her cheek guided her back to gaze into deep brown eyes above her.

"Hey, hey. Never doubt yourself. You didn't while you chased me and I drove you crazy. Your stubborn determination is one of your traits I'm most thankful for." B'Elanna gave Seven one more kiss before sliding back to Seven's side, keeping their legs intertwined and snuggling into her taller lover's neck contently. Her earlier energy was waning into contented bliss.

"Hmm… you still have not told me what you think of my suggestion." Seven could already hear B'Elanna's heartbeat begin to slow so she pulled the golden fur blanket around them. B'Elanna let out a small yawn.

"It's clever, 'an alphabet of Q's', I like it. You win, and without even a fuss out of me, remember this day Princess, remember this day…" B'Elanna finally drifted off to sleep in Seven's arms. The blue-eyed blonde laid a gentle kiss upon her Klingon's forehead before gently tightening her grip on her lover's strong frame. Her thoughts drifted back to a time almost two years ago…

"I apologize Mr. Paris, but my answer is still no." Seven continued on her path to Astrometrics attempting to ignore the sandy haired man-child who fancied himself the 'pilot' of a large, mostly automated starship. The ability to press 'go' or 'stop' did not impress the former Borg in the least. Especially when compared to his former girlfriend, B'Elanna Torres who could detect a misalignment in the warp nacelles both by sound and feel; who could work marvels of engineering with a spanner set and two cups of raktajino; who could-

"But why? I've got the holodeck time, I'm the helmsman for Alpha Shift on Voyager, I'm a Lieutenant-"

"Junior Grade Lieutenant, yes, I am aware of your rank Mr. Paris, also that it is provisional and that you have previously been demoted to Ensign." Seven was starting to understand the need to express exasperation through the physical act known as 'the sigh'.

Tom at least had the good sense to look humbled- for a second. "I don't get it, I get no respect around here and yet it is obvious that you and the Captain and everyone else seem have some kind of major respect for B'Elanna, who's the same rank as me." The sight of a grown man pouting in self-pity was something that Seven also discovered was 'a major turn-off' as Jenny Delaney would say. Despite her research and the Doctor's efforts, Seven had concluded that she was more attracted to the female compliment of Voyager- well, one female in particular.

"Lieutenant Torres did not join the Maquis to 'get back' at her father. She believed in their cause of justice for the Bajoran people and she never wavered from that belief. She did not dishonour herself by turning on them either." She had stopped walking and levelled the 'helmsman' with her best Borg glare. "Lieutenant Torres is also the head of the entire Engineering Department on Voyager, which she has gained through merit; her skill and expertise has gotten this ship through circumstances that another in her place would not have been able to. She works tirelessly for this crew and receives little reward. During your time with her, you saw her as something that you would always have and therefore something that you could ignore for your more juvenile pursuits. Given the choice, I would much rather B'Elanna Torres as a mate than you."

Neither Seven nor Tom could guess who was more surprised at Seven's outburst. Seven was wondering just how she had allowed herself to express her most secret feelings to the fool standing in front of her and Tom was wondering just how he could use this delicious piece of gossip to his advantage, completely oblivious to being shot down like a WWI fighter pilot in the Red Baron's sights.

Seeing no need to waste any more time with Paris, Seven turned and continued to Astrometrics, slightly flustered at her own actions. Tom began his trek back to the bridge, the miss-aligned wheels of his childish mind spinning in glee like the Tazmanian Devil boring through a tree over his planned machinations.

"So Seven's got a thing for B'Elanna, hmmm? Well, if I know Lanna, and I think I do, she'll shoot Seven down faster than Harry's heart gets broken every week. As a bonus, the Captain, who clearly has a think for 'ole Lanna will be furious with Seven. I wonder if I'll be able to make Seven grovel when she comes back to me… yes Tom Paris, you *are* a super-genius!" His spontaneous maniacal laughter in the turbo lift was interrupted by several befuddled bridge backup crew leaving their stations for lunch.

And so, over the next several weeks Paris put his plan into motion, constantly hinting to Seven that B'Elanna was available and possibly receptive to advances. Seven, not being stupid, did not believe Tom's false sincerity for one moment, but still the urge to get closer to the volatile half-Klingon was becoming more difficult to resist. Seven was finding herself with an elevated heart rate and the capillaries in her neck and cheeks seemed to constantly fill with blood whenever she was around B'Elanna. She noticed more and more that each time she caught sight of the golden trim of B'Elanna's uniform, her internal equilibrium stabilizers would seem to malfunction an her augmented ball-and-socket joints in her knees would falter. It was like catching a glimpse of the Omega particle… or at least a mythical creature. Seven also noticed that her optical implant would track B'Elanna's movements when they were in proximity, paying special attention to the Chief Engineer's firm buttocks.

Finally, one day while arguing over the best approach for doing a fuel injector diagnostic while at warp 3, Seven blurted out an invitation to the holodeck. While the reaction was not what she was hoping for, and internally Seven was berating herself for her own frank awkwardness, the blush that rose to B'Elanna's face before she made a lame excuse to see the Doctor and rushed off gave Seven a glimmer of hope. She wasn't met with anger, indifference or an insult before the fiery brunette fled Engineering. Once again catching herself staring at B'Elanna's behind, Seven grew more determined than ever to claim the flighty beauty.

The next several weeks saw Seven growing more and more confident in her interactions with the Chief Engineer, as brief as they were at times- B'Elanna seemed to take flight with an audible squeak whenever Seven approached her. While Seven believed that she could outrun the smaller brunette in a proper setting, her high heels and B'Elanna's agility made nearly impossible to catch the golden trimmed half-Klingon with the behind she coveted so much through the halls of Voyager. Instead of getting discouraged, however, the chase was only making the blonde beauty's resolve strengthen. She was Borg after all… well, ex-Borg anyway and ex-Borg did not quit, especially ex-Borg that understood the concept of hope.

While some might say Seven was not properly schooled in the art of seduction, she certainly wasn't above putting her constant research to the test. The problem was, she couldn't get B'Elanna to stay in one place long enough in order to give her plans the time to work. She even at one point tried using Borg-enhanced force fields to catch the slippery Engineer, but B'Elanna escaped into a Jefferies tube and used a site-to-site transport masked with Maquis encryption codes. Another time, she attempted to pin the beautiful brunette against a console by placing her own leg between B'Elanna's and pinning her with her hips. B'Elanna managed to escape when Harry Kim entered Engineering, saw the two of them in a secluded area, fainted and hit his head on a nearby bulkhead. Seven's instinct to help her friend distracted her long enough for B'Elanna to make her escape.

Meanwhile, Tom Paris, who had not been exactly thrilled with either Seven's persistence nor B'Elanna's reactions, decided to bring in the big gun- Janeway. Letting it slip on the bridge one day that Seven and B'Elanna might be starting a little something, Tom watched his Captain for any visible cracks in her usually unwavering command mask. No one noticed that Harry had fainted until the Captain asked for a sensor update on the sector they were travelling through. After the Doc came and gave Harry some smelling salts and told him to get more iron in his diet, to which Tom giggled, the Captain excused herself from the bridge in favour of her Ready Room. "Excellent," thought Tom, "she's probably thinking of ways to keep the Borg and Lanna apart… Tom Paris, SUPER-genius…".

The fantasy of Tom's mind did not, of course, live up to reality. The Captain, had, in fact gone to her Ready Room to think on the B'Elanna/Seven situation, but the conversation she was planning to have with Seven was not going to be what Paris would have envisioned. Yes, the Captain was well aware of the gossip suggesting she had romantic feelings for her Chief Engineer. Had she thought it might impact ship's business, she might have even put a crushing stop to it, but since it didn't, it was really of no concern to her. No, she looked upon B'Elanna as a surrogate daughter, one that had a rough childhood that she felt the need to guide into becoming the person she could be- and Janeway was incredibly proud of the person B'Elanna Torres had become since joining Voyager.

Her only concern was the young woman's happiness and after seeing how Tom treated her, she felt a protectiveness regarding any potential suitor for her Chief Engineer, even if she had to keep it to herself. With Seven, however, things were different. Another black sheep taken into her flock, Seven presented a unique challenge in herself. She couldn't help a small part of her that worried that Seven may be more interested in the 'research' aspects of dating B'Elanna without being aware of the emotional aspects of such a relationship. She did not want to see either woman hurt and would have to ascertain Seven's intentions. Suddenly, Janeway understood why her father gave everyone she ever brought home such a hard time…

Now, Janeway *planned* to have a conversation with her resident ex-Borg on just what her intentions might be towards Voyager's Chief of Engineering as soon as possible. It would be a subtle conversation if Janeway could pull it off but knowing the usually direct nature of Seven of Nine, she suspected she may end up with a headache regardless. Unfortunately, as things were wont to do in the Delta Quadrant, plans changed. The Captain had been walking with Commander Chakotay on Deck Four when they turned a corner to practically run into Seven of Nine carrying a seemingly unconscious B'Elanna Torres.

"Seven!" exclaimed a flabbergasted Kathryn Janeway. She'd thought the blonde might engage in a somewhat aggressive approach in her pursuit of B'Elanna, but she couldn't help wondering just how far off her immediate thoughts of Seven clubbing B'Elanna over the head might be given the ex-Borg's tendency for research and the scene she was witnessing before her. Chakotay was his usual unhelpful self, smirking at the Captain's clear discomfort. If she hadn't brought herself to punch the man before, she wouldn't start today, Janeway was a model Starfleet Officer after all.

"Captain, if you and the Commander will excuse me, I must get Lieutenant Torres to Sickbay-" Janeway was already rubbing the bridge of her nose.

"Seven, please tell me you didn't club B'Elanna over the head, I know you have been pursuing her romantically, but you can't- *sigh* Seven, I consider myself a bit of a guardian to B'Elanna and I don't want to see her hurt emotionally or physically because you got a bit overzealous in your research."

Seven seemed aghast. The gasp that escaped her lips was decidedly un-Borg-like. B'Elanna might have even thought it to be cute had she been conscious.

"I assure you Captain, my intentions towards Lieutenant Torres are entirely noble and I would never harm B'Elanna. In fact, I had finally gotten her to stay in one place long enough to engage her in personal conversation- she seemed to quite enjoy my warp core augmentation proposal and had what she called an 'epiphany'. Unfortunately as she began to run towards her office for reasons I am yet unaware, she collided with Mr. Neelix who had shown up in Engineering to recruit volunteers for his 'Running with the Bulls' holodeck experience. Before I could catch her, she hit her head first against Mr. Neelix's own forehead and then again on the floor. After Mr. Neelix assured me he would be 'fine', I proceeded to carry Lieutenant Torres to Sick Bay. Mr. Neelix is currently making his way to Sick Bay from Engineering as well with what he called a 'head ache'."

With a small satisfied grunt, Janeway moved out of Seven's way so she could continue to Sick Bay. "Oh, and Seven?" Janeway said causing Seven to pause briefly and look back at her.

"Yes Captain?"

"Don't-don't tell her that I… um-" She knew B'Elanna was a proud woman and didn't need to be 'mothered' but Janeway couldn't really help being protective, especially after Paris.

The smallest hint of a knowing smile caused the edges of Seven's lips to curve gently and Janeway suddenly *knew* that this would be good for both women. "I will not mention that you are 'sizing up' B'Elanna's potential suitors." Now Seven grinned and Janeway couldn't help but mirror the happy expression. Chakotay seemed to have his grin permanently etched on his face.

Janeway finally gave Seven a small nod and shooed her away. "Carry on Seven, and… I approve."

The slightest of nods was returned and Seven continued her trek to Sick Bay with the love of her life in her arms. Had the circumstances been better, it might have been more romantic but the full smile blooming on Seven's face said more than enough. It had finally taken a change of tactics and a bit of fate, but Seven was confident she had finally caught her illusive gold-trimmed Engineer with the amazing behind.

The End

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