DISCLAIMER: I don't own the ladies and don't own Shakespeare, although most of his works are now in the public domain. I just borrowed one of his quotes and twisted it to my selfish needs. Thanks and praise goes to Jillo fine her beta work. This is my response to The Romeo & Juliet Challenge (Act 1, Scene 5).
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

True Beauty
By Cirroco DeSade


(O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!)

Her brilliance and fervor can infect the most jaded of the travel-weary crew. Whether in the middle of a firefight, trying to keep the ship in one piece while the world outside conspires to destroy it, or on an ordinary day when the most challenging task is nothing more than adjusting a component with a spanner, she inspires belief in the impossible. She has no equivalent; no crewmember or outsider can match her verve.

I, as a Borg, saw the raw intelligence at her disposal and wanted to assimilate her into our fold. She would have provided the Borg with so much more than hundreds of species have over hundreds of years. Yet, now I am so glad I could not touch her then.

After I was severed and began feel the barest hint of emotion, I yearned to understand her intensity, and I wanted it to be mine. However, there was hardly a fragment of her spirit inside me; I remained to all the others seen as cold as ice.

I would push her to savor that fire, hoping I could use it to find my own flame. I would inhale her scent, witness the dilation of her eyes, and record the rapidity of her heartbeats. Every night before regeneration I would replay it all in my head, trying to capture the barest hint of that ardor, to possess the unattainable.

(It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night, Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear;)

No matter where she goes, that fire follows. If you ask me which is more valuable, more beautiful, Omega or her, there would be no hesitation in my answer. There is nothing as beautiful, as exquisite as this woman.

(Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear!)

How could any person dare to love her? Who could be deserving of such a gift?

She is an indescribable treasure; no words could capture her worth. It haunts me to think somebody else would hold her, would obtain that passion.

I want to be the person with whom she would share that fire. I dare to dream, even as I despair its impossibility. What use would she have for me, the seemingly emotionless former drone?

(So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows,)

These humans bear no resemblance to her. She thinks herself inferior, while I know it is the opposite that is true. They are inferior to her every moment. Every breath she takes is a testament to her superiority. Every step, every movement of her powerful body, shows her unequaled grace.

I have knowledge of thousands of species and know not one who could stand beside her. I have seen thousands of beings and never saw one as striking. This crew has no idea how very lucky they are, blessed with her very presence.

(As yonder lady o'er her fellows shows.)

In the mess hall she is never without invitation. In the holodeck, she is always called for company. In the conference room, she is always the one they turn to for salvation from their woes.

(The measure done, I'll watch her place of stand,)

I have watched her for so long, that I know where she will be. She will not be too far ahead of me and I will catch her before she has retired. I will get her attention just as her door will open, and take a chance, give the impossible a try. The impossible does not seem to be able to withstand her onslaught. Dreams that she would vanquish this particular impossibility have plagued my every night.

(And, touching hers, make blessed my rude hand.)

Can she see in me her fire as I approach? Does she know how hot her existence burns in me? Will she accept me, even as I steal one moment of her time, one blessing from her lips to mine?

I deliver to her my passion, gleaned from her own. In the doorway to her home my audacity amazes even me. No small wonder that she is surprised, shocked by my boldness, yet she does not push me away.

One moment bleeds into many, before she responds, and it is no small miracle to me as she does. In that moment, I heard her moan and she entrapped my heart forever. She seized control of the embrace, leading me to my willing prison. The door shut behind us, and every second that passed, every moment that went by was bliss.

I now know that time all but disappears in her embrace.

(Did my heart love till now? forswear it, sight!)

My heart aches with this need for her, this desire. I finally can feel part of her fire in myself, the blaze her love has created in me. All through the night she teaches me of rapture. Through these exquisite moments I learn every inch of her and map every part of her I can touch. I memorize every sound, every word, every taste and every smell. My heart, my very soul, cherishes every moment gifted to me.

And in the intermissions, she captures me with words. She tells me she had waited for me for so long, that she had given up. She lays claim to me, calling me hers, saying she is mine. Her eyes are shining, feelings laid bare, and I have fallen. I now truly understand what that means.

How could I have understood love until this moment?

(For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night.)

At the heart of our passion, her body seems to glow to me; her eyes shine with something I have never dared for in my wildest dreams. She truly loves me too. To me, there has never been anything as beautiful as that.

This moment, this look, this feeling embody true beauty… It is perfection.

The End

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