DISCLAIMER: This Star Trek Voyager story utilizes characters that are copyright © by Paramount Pictures.  No infringement on their respective copyrights is intended by the author in any way, shape or form. This is an original story. The story and non-trek characters belong to me.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Feedback and constructive comments are always welcome. You can reach me at rjnolan@gmail.com
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Unexpected Arrival
By RJ Nolan


Chapter Twelve

Del pushed away the computer monitor, looking longingly toward the door. She was waiting for Seven to complete her regeneration cycle. It had been a week since she awakened in sickbay with Seven wrapped around her. The doctor had appeared shortly after. She had expected a lecture at the very least but he had been surprisingly nonchalant about the whole thing.

Seven had resisted even then going to regenerate. Del had insisted and Seven had reluctantly returned to her cargo bay, promising that she would seal the door with Borg encryption codes before initiating her regeneration cycle.

Del had slept quite a bit during that first week. Whenever she awakened Seven was by her side. Del reminded herself to thank Captain Janeway for allowing Seven to remain off duty.

Stretching with a big yawn, Del winced at the sharp pain in her chest. The doctor assured her that she would eventually recover fully but it was going to take time. The damage to her lungs was extensive. He had done all he could and now with continued therapy and rest her body would complete the healing.

Del sighed in frustration, she didn't see why she could not recover in her own cabin and had to stay in sickbay. It was time to try and contact Captain Janeway and see if she would intercede for her with the doctor.

She had only seen Janeway once in the last week and then had been on the receiving end of a stern lecture. She had sensed other swirling emotions just beneath the surface of the Captain's angry demeanor but had been unable to determine what was truly bothering her.

Del looked up and smiled brightly. Seven was standing in the doorway.

Seven walked across the room and leaned over to place a soft, sweet kiss on Del's lips.

There had been a major shift in their relationship since Del's injury. Seven was more tactile with Del than she had been previously. Reaching out and touching her much more often and not waiting for her to initiate the contact as she had in the past. It was as if she was trying to convince herself that Del was really there and safe.

Seven looked around sickbay. "Where's the doctor?" she asked suspiciously.

"He turned himself off. I swear," Del added, at Seven's disbelieving look.

After repeated complaints from the doctor, Janeway had threatened to override her security codes if she didn't stop turning him off.

"You should sleep, it's late," Seven said.

Del scooted over and patted the bed next to her. Seven never hesitated and climbed up beside her. She had slept with Del every night since she regained consciousness.

"I can't wait 'til we can sleep in our own bed. This biobed sucks," Del grumbled, not even realizing the significance of what she had just said. "You sure you won't be bored? I know you don't need to sleep after just regenerating." She found she slept much sounder with Seven by her side. "What?" she asked when she noticed Seven's bright smile. She was radiating happiness.

"You said 'our bed'," Seven informed her happily.

"I guess I did. I can't imagine not sleeping with you after this week," Del admitted.

Seven leaned down for a kiss but pulled back when Del tried to escalate the contact. "You need to rest, if you ever hope to get out of here…now sleep!"

Del grumbled good-naturedly and settled down to sleep with Seven curled snugly against her side.

"Are you sure you are up to this?" Seven asked anxiously for the third time.

Del had been released from sickbay that morning and they had returned to their cabin together. Though it would be a while before she could return to full duty, Del was anxious to get out and about again for a bit. She had convinced Seven to have lunch in the mess hall.

"Yes, I'm fine…let's go," Del said, heading for the door.

Seven stepped up next to Del and wrapped an arm around her waist. Regardless of what Del said Seven knew she was still weak and in pain. They made their way to the mess hall. By the time they reached their destination Del was tired but did her best to hide it from Seven.

"Hey Seven…over here!"

Seven turned to find B'Elanna waving her and Del over to a table where she sat with Tom and Harry.

"Hi Del, how're you feeling?" B'Elanna questioned as they sat down. She had visited Del and Seven every day while Del was confined to sickbay.

"Not too bad. Sure is great to be out of sickbay," Del stated, then laughed at the enthusiastic nods around the table.

"How soon do you think you'll be able to come back to the bridge?" Harry asked.

"Not for a couple of weeks," Del admitted obviously frustrated. "But hey, if it wasn't for Seven, I wouldn't even be here… so I'm not complaining… well too much anyway." She grinned and reached out to squeeze Seven's arm.

All eyes turned to Seven and she flushed under the attention.

"Yeah…that was some fantastic piloting, according to B'Elanna," Tom complimented. "Maybe you'd like to try out the Delta Flyer sometime," he offered sincerely.

Seven blinked in surprise, not knowing what to say. She glanced at Del and she smiled at her encouragingly. "That would be acceptable…thank you," she added, flashing a brief shy smile at Tom.

Tom's mouth dropped open in shock. It was all Del could do not to burst out laughing. She was well aware of his visceral reaction to Seven's brief smile. She glanced over at B'Elanna and they shared an amused smirk. Seven glanced between the two women totally unaware as to what had triggered their amusement.

Tom squirmed uncomfortably then launched into a monolog about his beloved Delta Flyer. Eventually the conversation drifted to other subjects. Del watched the interaction around the table with interest. It was the first time she had seen Seven participate in a group discussion and really be part of it, offering her own comments and insights. She could sense Seven's underlying nervousness but she was doing remarkably well holding her own in the flowing conversations.

Del subtlety projected approval and assurance toward Seven. When Seven turned and smiled brightly at her she realized she hadn't been as subtle as she thought or Seven was becoming much more attuned to her mental emanations.

By the time lunch broke up Del was more than happy to return to their cabin and sleep. Seven had worked that morning from their cabin but was due to return to Astrometrics and Alpha shift duty tomorrow.

"Do you need anything? Maybe you should get some sleep. Are you in pain? Is it time for your medicine?" Seven questioned anxiously. She felt so helpless and it was a very uncomfortable feeling. She wanted to do everything she possibly could to help Del get better.

"I slept all afternoon. I took my medicine with dinner. I'm fine, stop hovering!" Del grumbled irritably.

Seven had jumped up every time she moved all evening, straightening her pillow, bringing her things to drink… etc. It was driving Del nuts having Seven hovering at her elbow. At the swift surge of hurt from Seven Del immediately regretted her words.

"I'm sorry…I'm a terrible patient… I just hate being sick or injured and unable to do what I want. I didn't mean to take it out on you," Del apologized. "Come sit with me," she requested contritely. Del lifted up into a more sitting position and spread her legs patting the empty space between them. Seven had been working at her desk while Del rested on the couch.

Seven moved into position then hesitated when Del urged her to lean back. "I'll hurt you."

Del tightened her arms around Seven's abdomen and drew her back so she was resting against her chest. "Stop worrying, you're not going to hurt me, this is just what I need." Del sighed in contentment when Seven relaxed against her.

Del nuzzled Seven's neck making her shiver slightly at the contact. She instinctively turned her head giving Del more skin to caress. Del was more than happy to accept the invitation and began to kiss and lightly nip at Seven's neck. Her hands moved in feather light caresses across Seven's stomach before heading for her breasts.

Seven felt her body start to tingle and the area between her thighs start to throb. She could feel the growing dampness there as well. She moaned as Del's hands moved up her body. Remembering vividly what happened the last time she gave into these sensations, she panicked, jerking away from Del and jumping off the couch.

"It's late…you need to rest," Seven stammered then turned on her heels and hurried toward the bedroom.

Del stared after Seven in shock wondering what the hell had just happened. One minute they were kissing and the next Seven practically ran from the room. She had sensed Seven's arousal but when she jumped off the couch it had been overwhelmed by a flood of fear. Determined to find out what was wrong she got up slowly and followed Seven into their bedroom.

Del was surprised to find Seven already in the ensuite with the door closed. She replicated herself a pair of pajamas and changed then sat down on the side of the bed to await Seven's return.

Seven stepped out of the ensuite and breathed a sigh of relief when she realized Del was ready for bed. She had been hiding in the ensuite afraid to be in the room with Del when she changed clothes.

"Come mere," Del requested, patting the bed next to her.

Seven hesitated then finally complied but left an open space between them.

Del looked at her curiously, sensing her fear, but choosing not to mention it. "What just happened in the other room? One minute you were fine and the next you ran out of the room. Did I do something wrong?" Del asked, though she was sure that wasn't the case.

"No, I just thought it was getting late and you should rest," Seven lied. She looked down at her lap and refused to meet Del's eyes.

Del shook her head and reached out gently forcing Seven's chin up until they made eye contact. "You know better than that Seven. Now tell me what you're so scared of?" Del insisted. Del could sense Seven's internal struggle but she made no comment and just waited her out.

Finally with a sigh Seven spoke. "When we were kissing, I felt my self becoming aroused," she admitted, radiating guilt.

"There's nothing wrong with that, I was aroused too. Two people who love each other become aroused when they kiss and touch each other. You weren't afraid the other times we kissed. Why now?" Del asked gently, reaching out to stroke Seven's thigh.

Seven pulled away. "I could hurt you," she whispered in a strained voice.

Suddenly Del understood what this was all about. "I told you, what happened before was an accident. You didn't do it intentionally. You experienced something you never had before and had no way of knowing how you'd react."

Seven looked up and met Del's eyes. "Then why did you lie to the doctor?" she challenged.

Del sighed. "Because our personal life, specifically our sex life is none of his damn business. That's an intimate personal thing between you and me."

"So it was not because you were ashamed that you had sex with a Borg?"

Del resisted the urge to bang her head against the nearest wall. "No, Seven, because I didn't have sex with a Borg. You and I started to make love. What you experienced was foreplay that got a bit out of hand. Believe me, we were no where close to being done, it gets much better than that," Del assured with a sexy grin.

Seven looked momentarily intrigued then sobered. "We can not make love," she stated flatly.

"What! Why not?" Del asked, totally thrown by Seven's statement. After all, she had been with her every day since she had been injured and slept with her every night. What she was saying just did not make any sense.

"I love you," Seven vowed, her love shining brightly in her eyes. "It is not safe for us to be intimate. I will not risk injuring you again."

Though Del could feel Seven's resolve, she also sensed the strong undercurrent of fear that ran through Seven.

"That is not acceptable," Del stated, using Seven's stock phrase.

Seven blinked in surprise and stared at Del. It was all so clear to her, she did not understand why Del could not see it. She loved Del with all her heart. There was no way she would ever take the chance of injuring her, accidentally or otherwise.

"I know you're scared Seven. I wish your first experience had been a better one but it happened. It was an accident and we need to move on. Now that we know you can lose control of your implant when you climax we just have to make sure you keep that hand away from any vulnerable body parts. It's certainly not a reason for us not to become lovers," Del insisted firmly.

"Come mere," she encouraged taking hold of Seven's mesh covered hand and urging her closer. Seven resisted for just a moment then scooted closer. Del leaned over and kissed Seven gently on the lips. Seven stiffened but didn't pull away. She continued with light butterfly kisses against her lips, her cheeks, all over her face before eventually returning to her lips when she felt Seven begin to respond. Seven groaned when Del's tongue came out and pressed for entrance into her mouth. The kiss quickly escalated. Del leaned into Seven and slowly pressed her back onto the bed while continuing to kiss her passionately.

Seven panicked as soon as her back touched the bed. She pushed Del off and quickly sat up. "No…I can't…I'll hurt you," Seven stammered near tears. Her heart was pounding and was match by the pulsing throb between her legs.

Del wrapped her arms around Seven and pulled her close. Seven was trembling, her fear overwhelming her arousal. "It's okay, just relax…. Shh… it's alright," Del said, gently rocking Seven in her arms.

Once Seven had calmed Del urged her to climb into bed. Seven was nervous but complied. Del slipped under the covers and offered her shoulder to Seven as she did every night. Seven snuggled against her side, her libido finally calming down and her fear with it.

Del now realized that Seven's fear was much stronger than she expected. But she was a patient woman and she knew she could work through this with Seven and over come her fear of injuring her during intimacy. Together there was nothing they could not over come.

Del paced the cabin restlessly. It had been two and a half weeks since she had been released from sickbay. She had protested but had been ordered to report every other day for continuing therapy. The doctor still had not given her the go ahead to return to duty.

Determined to regain her strength she had been working out a little in the hologym every day and was almost back to her full strength. She had another appointment with the doctor at the end of the week and hoped to convince him to return her to at least limited, if not full duty. The enforced inactivity was driving her crazy.

To further add to her frustration the situation with Seven was turning out to be more serious than she anticipated. Del had hoped with being back in their cabin and sharing quarters and a bed every night Seven would relax and things would return to how they had been before the unfortunate incident. That was not turning out to be the case. They had quickly settled into life together. Seven was more comfortable around Del and touched her often. But the moment things turned even the slightest bit sexual, Seven panicked and pulled away.

Sleeping with the beautiful blond every night was taking its toll on Del. She was having increasingly erotic dreams and Seven sharing her bed made any self ministrations impossible. As soon as she felt Seven's lush body against her, in the bed at night she was painfully aroused.

Needing to do something Del headed for the door. Maybe a walk through Voyager's corridors would calm her down.

Del eventually found herself outside Holodeck Two. Glancing up at the panel she saw that a personal program was already running. As she started to turn away the doors slid open and a blast of cold air hit Del making her gasp. Two crewman exited the doors laughing exuberantly, their cheeks flushed with cold. They were dressed in ski gear.

"Hey, Commander. How are you feeling?" Janice inquired.

Del smiled at the woman. The young lieutenant had stopped by sickbay to see her a few times after returning from the ill fated away mission. She had not seen her since she was discharged.

"Much better thanks. What have you two been up to today?" Del asked, smiling at Janice and her companion.

"We went skiing. It was a blast! Carrie has this great program with the best ski slopes on Alcashia," Janice enthused. "Oh… I'm sorry," she apologized. "Where are my manners? Commander MacMillan, this is Ensign Carrie Rogers."

"Hi Carrie, nice to meet you," Del greeted the petite blond.

"You too, Commander. Would you like to use the ski program? I'd be happy to give you the code," Carrie offered shyly.

"I may take you up on that but not today. I'm still hoping the doctor will clear me for duty. Wouldn't want to show up with a broken arm or leg," Del said, making both women laugh.

"We were just heading to the mess hall to grab a bite before reporting to duty. Would you like to join us?" Janice invited.

"Thanks, but I already have a dinner commitment. I do appreciate the invitation. Maybe we could meet for lunch or dinner sometime when we're all off duty." Del had not been sure at first but now she was positive these two were a couple.

Carrie and Janice shared a quick glance. "Maybe you could get Seven to join us too?" Janice suggested.

Del smiled brightly at the two women. "Yes, I think she'd like that. The new duty roster comes out the day after tomorrow. Why don't you contact me when you get it and we'll try and coordinate our schedules."

Both women readily agreed and then said their goodbyes.

Del was almost back to her cabin when the revelation struck. She didn't know why she had not thought of it sooner. Thinking about the ski program and how much fun the snow could be reminded her of her favorite holoprogram. She had carried a data disk of the program she had created at the Academy with her to every assignment. Even if the ship she was stationed on did not have a holodeck eventually they took leave somewhere that did. The disk had been lost along with all her other belongings, when the Franklin was destroyed.

With a spring in her step, Del turned and headed for Engineering. If anyone could help her recreate the program it would be B'Elanna.

It turned out that Tom Paris was the holodeck wizard on Voyager. He not only had a diverse stock of programs that could be modified but was incredibly adept at making the modifications. He had done an amazing job at recreating the basic program that Del wanted. Once all the fundamentals were in place it was just a matter of making adjustments to the interiors to match the image in her memory. Tom kept wanting to add extras to the program, to make it more interesting. He did not understand that the program was not meant to do anything other than provide the appropriate environment.

Del had continued working after Tom left, tweaking the program until it was as close to the original as she could make it. She lost track of time while programming.

She mentally rubbed her hands together in anticipation as she made her way back to her cabin. Tonight was Seven's night to regenerate but tomorrow…

Seven returned to their cabin after duty on the Alpha shift. The past weeks had been incredible. She fell deeper in love with Del every day and had quickly settled into living with her. She enjoyed not only their frequent touches but sleeping cuddled with Del every night.

Seven just wished there was some way she could turn off the disturbing sensations that insisted on rushing through her body when Del touched her. She knew it was arousal but refused to give into it. All she had to do was remember that horrible moment after experiencing such pleasure when she realized she had seriously injured Del. She wished with all her heart that they could be lovers but sadly knew that was never going to happen. It was one more reminder of the fact that she would never be truly human.

Seven stopped just inside the doors when she realized Del was not present. She walked through the cabin wondering where she was. She stepped into the bedroom and immediately saw a pile of clothes laying on the bed with a piece of paper on top. She picked up the paper.


Please change into the clothes on the bed and then meet me in Holodeck Two.



Seven spread the clothes out on the bed. There was a long sleeve shirt made of a soft flannel material, a pair of denim pants, thick socks, and a pair of boots. Her implant over her eye arched in surprise at the lacy undergarments included with the otherwise utilitarian clothes.

Making up her mind, she stripped off her biosuit and donned the lacy undergarments marveling at how they felt against her skin. She was startled when her nipples hardened when they brushed against the silk of the bra. Pulling on the rest of the clothes she quickly finished dressing. Grabbing the heavy jacket that had been included with the clothes, she headed for the holodeck.


Chapter Thirteen

Del was waiting outside the holodeck with her jacket thrown over her arm; dressed almost exactly as Seven. Del's eyes widened when she spotted Seven. She looked incredible. She had not only changed out of her biosuit but had taken down her hair, allowing it to flow freely about her shoulders.

"Hi," she greeted Seven, leaning over to place a soft kiss on her lips. "You look great. Are you ready?"

Seven smiled shyly looking uncertain but nodded.

The holodeck doors slid open and a blast of frigid air wafted out. Seven shivered. Her biosuit regulated her body temperature, without it she was as vulnerable to the elements as anyone else.

"Put on your jacket, it's cold inside," Del instructed as she slipped into her own coat.

They stepped inside the holodeck and the doors slid closed behind them, leaving them in a winter wonderland. The sky was crystal clear and the air crisp and clean. The ground underfoot was snow covered. The large clearing where they stood provided a panoramic view of the area. There were snow covered mountains in the background and in the distance, nestled among a grove of pine trees, was a cabin with smoke rising lazily from its chimney.

The pair slowly made their way to the cabin stopping frequently to look around. Seven jumped when a rabbit bound across their path. They stopped to watch a doe with her young fawn. Seven was mesmerized by the sights and sounds around her.

By the time they arrived at the log cabin they were shivering from the cold. The cabin had a large main room with a stone fireplace that dominated a whole wall. A fire was burning briskly making the cabin warm and inviting. There were stairs leading up to a loft overhead. The cabin was furnished with well worn leather furniture, thick braided rugs on the floor and a sturdy looking wood table and chairs. The only light was provided by the fire and two small table lamps at each end of the couch.

Del helped Seven remove her coat and boots before doing the same. She led her over to the large couch that faced the fireplace.

"Sit here and warm up, I'll be right back."

Seven looked around with interest.

Del returned quickly with two cups of steaming liquid and offered one to Seven. "It's hot chocolate."

Seven took a tentative sip and smiled in pleasure. "What is this place?" she inquired curiously.

"It's a cabin, located on Big Bear Mountain in the state of California on Earth. Every year my family would go up to the cabin for a weeks vacation. My father always said it was important to take some down time, away from work, phones and the pressures of daily modern life. The cabin was our getaway place, a place to relax and recharge. No modern electronic devices were allowed. Though my dad did make an exception for a replicator. My mom said there was no way she was going to spend her vacation without that."

"Does the real place still exist?"

"Yes. My parents left it to me when they passed away. I spent a week at the cabin before reporting for my assignment on the Franklin. This is an exact replica of the place or at least as close as I can make it."

"It's beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with me." Seven had quickly realized how special this place was to Del.

Del blushed. "I'm glad you like it."

They settled in to snuggle by the fire. Del had bargained with a number of Voyager's crew to get the required holodeck hours she needed. So far everything had gone as planned. She only hoped her plans for the rest of the evening went as smoothly. She had finally realized she would never be able to get Seven over her fear of intimacy unless she tried something radically different.

The first part of that had been accomplished, getting her out of her familiar environment and into a totally different place, one that had no bad associations. Del had been pleased when Seven showed up wearing the clothes she left her. That was the second part. How could Seven not feel like a Borg when her very attire accentuated her differences. Now for the third part, something drastically different…

Del looked over at Seven and smiled sweetly before placing a quick kiss on her lips. "I was wondering if you'd mind rubbing my back, it's really tight."

Seven smiled brightly and nodded. She loved touching Del.

Del stood up and stretched then began to unbutton her shirt. She tried to keep a neutral expression on her face as Seven's eyes began to widen. Pretending not to notice, she continued to slowly remove her shirt. Once it was gone she reached for her bra. A quick glance at her companion showed she had her undivided attention. Del tossed her bra on top of her shirt and turned to face Seven fully. She bit her lip to keep from groaning when Seven's eyes locked on her breasts. Her nipples immediately hardened. Making no effort to cover herself she let Seven look her fill. When Seven finally lifted her eyes to meet hers they were dilated with arousal. Del reached past Seven to pull the blanket off the back of the couch. Her bare breast brushing against Seven's shoulder causing her to moan softly. Del spread the blanket on top of the rug in front of the fire and laid down on her stomach, resting her head on her arms.

Del waited several minutes but Seven never moved. She seemed to be frozen in place. "Seven?" she called softly.

Seven shook herself out of the trance she had fallen into. The sight of Del's bare breasts was seared into her mind and all she could think about was seeing them again. She looked down at Del in confusion.

"My backrub," she reminded.

Seven blushed and then hurriedly knelt down next to Del. She was surprised to find her hand shaking when she reached out to begin Del's massage. She had never touched her bare skin before. Seven shivered and Del groaned when her hand came in contact with Del's back. Seven almost pulled away when an electric tingle shot up her arm. She had given Del several back rubs but this was different…very different.

Del closed her eyes and sighed. The feel of Seven's hand against her bare back felt wonderful. "That feels good. Use both hands…please," Del requested.

Seven hesitated then complied. She felt herself becoming excited as she touched Del but surprisingly there was no fear associated with the feeling.

When Del felt Seven relax into the massage and start to become aroused she stopped holding back her vocalizations. She began to moan and groan hedonistically, letting Seven know how much she was enjoying her touch. She could feel Seven's growing arousal and was thrilled not to sense any fear. Maybe her idea would work…

Del lifted her head off her arms and turned to look over her shoulder at Seven. "That felt wonderful, Seven, thanks." Seven looked like she was about to protest the end of the massage but Del didn't give her a chance. Before Seven could react Del rolled over onto her back.

Seven couldn't help herself, her eyes locked on Del's breasts and she unknowingly whimpered. Del's nipples were hard and Seven felt hers contract at the sight. The impulse to reach out and touch was almost overwhelming.

Seven stared at her body with a growing look of hunger on her face. Del held perfectly still, afraid to break the spell. Finally she couldn't take it any longer.

"Touch me…" Del whispered huskily.

Seven looked up, her eyes filled with passion. "I can't," she whispered fearfully.

Del refused to react to Seven's fear, knowing exactly how aroused she was. Here goes, she thought. This moment would make or break them...

Del raised her arms over her head and locked her hands together, the move accentuating her breasts. Seven unconsciously scooted closer. "Yes, you can. You're the one in control here…touch me…love me, Seven," Del pleaded hoarsely. She could feel Seven's struggle and held her eyes refusing to let her look away. Allowing everything she felt for the beautiful blond to show in her eyes.

It was too much for Seven, her eyes dropped back to Del's breasts and her hand followed. She jerked back in surprise when Del moaned loudly and her back arched at the first soft brush of her fingers over her breast.

"Yes…that's it… don't stop."

Seven slid her hand all over Del's upper body, gently exploring. Touching Del's bare skin was more thrilling than she could have ever imagined. Her breath became short and she could feel her implants struggling to even out her respirations. She watched in wonder as Del's skin became covered in tiny bumps as her fingers slid over the soft skin of her torso. Seven grew more confident in her explorations as Del reacted to her touch. Touching Del so intimately was awakening feelings in her she did not know she was capable of. The pulsing throb between her legs had turned to a pounding pulse. She pressed her legs together against the distracting feeling.

Del was incredibly aroused. Seven's innocent explorations were about to drive her crazy. It was all she could do not to grab her hand and press it between her legs. When Seven's hand closed on her breast and squeezed gently Del struggled not to climax on the spot. Del was becoming frantic and didn't know how much more she could take. She forced her eyes open.


Seven met Del's eyes but never stopped touching her breasts.

"I need to come…to climax…please… I need you to touch me… between my legs…please," Del begged.

Seven hesitated, suddenly nervous.

"I need you, Seven...please."

Del whimpered in relief when Seven's hand finally dropped to her pants and began to unfasten them.

Seven slowly, carefully slipped her hand into Del's underwear and stopped at the top of her mound. At Del's hoarsely murmured encouragement she pressed lower. Seven groaned and her hips jerked. Nothing had prepared her for her own body's reaction to the sensation of her fingers sliding through the hot wet folds of Del's sex. She began to explore the sensitive tissues under her fingers.

"Oh God…yes…that so good…" Del panted. "Keep going…please, don't stop…"

She watched as Del's head thrashed back and forth in what appeared to be pain. But Del's increasingly strident cries of pleasure, assured her that was not the case.

"Seven!" Del cried out suddenly and came hard. Her back bowed off the floor and her thighs slammed shut trapping Seven's hand in place.

When Del came back to herself Seven's hand was still firmly seated between her thighs and Seven was watching her with a look of wonder on her face.

Del unclenched her hands and reached up to draw Seven down. "I love you," she murmured softly against her lips.

Seven had watched in awe as Del's body convulsed with pleasure. Knowing that she was responsible for that made her feel incredibly powerful. That she had the ability to cause Del to experience such ecstasy was truly amazing.

Del tugged on Seven's hand trying to remove it from between her legs. Seven grunted in protest, refusing to budge.

"You feel so good," Seven whispered, stroking the still twitching flesh under her fingers, making Del groan.

"I know…but I don't think I can again…not just yet." Del knew that Seven was very aroused and now was her chance.

"I'd really like to make you feel as good as you just did me," Del suggested gently.

Seven immediately started to panic. "Relax, I have an idea… trust me."

Del sat up and again tried to remove Seven's hand from between her legs. Seven pressed a bit harder, her middle finger slipping partway inside. "Seven," Del whimpered.

Seven reluctantly removed her hand. Curiously she brought her fingers up to her face and inhaled the unusual scent. Leaning forward she looked at the thick fluid coating her digits. She quickly lost interest in her fingers when Del stood and began to remove the remainder of her clothes. When she finished disrobing Seven's eyes roamed Del's naked body eagerly before zeroing in on the spot between Del's legs where her fingers had so recently been. She stared at the thick patch of dark hair and unconsciously licked her lips.

Del let out a loud groan. "You're going to be the death of me," she complained, kneeling down in front of Seven. "Take off your clothes for me," Del requested softly. So far letting Seven be in control had worked well.

Seven met Del's eyes and swallowed nervously then began to unbutton her shirt. She removed it then turned to placed it on top of Del's.

Del let her eyes roam Seven's torso. Not really seeing the implants, her eyes focused on the firm full breasts with hard nipples that protruded through the soft silk material of Seven's bra.

"Now the bra," Del instructed huskily.

Seven's hands shook as she slowly removed her bra. It was an unaccustomed feeling to wear one and an even stranger one to remove it while Del watched. She felt the pulsing throb between her thighs intensify and her nipples tighten painfully.

"Now the rest."

Swallowing anxiously, Seven stood to follow Del's instructions. She shivered and her ardor soared at the burning look in Del's eyes as she watched her disrobe. Finally she stood before Del in all her glory, her body softly lit by the flickering fire in the fireplace.

"You are so incredibly beautiful," Del breathed as she gazed at Seven. Holding out her hand she invited Seven to join her on the floor. She rose up on her knees and urged Seven to do the same. Del kissed Seven gently and slowly brought their bodies into contact.

Seven groaned loudly at the first touch of their bare bodies and tried to pull away, even as her hips surge forward without her consent.

"Shh…it's okay…everything is going to be fine, "Del assured. She moved away from Seven and lay down on her back on the rug. "Come mere," she encouraged. "I want to try something. There are lots of ways we can make love. You can have an orgasm and still be in control."

Seven still looked a little hesitant.

"You can stop at any time. Remember, you're in control. There's no way you can hurt me… I promise you…trust me," Del implored. "You'll be on top, so you're the one in charge. You set the pace, you control what happens… Alright?"

Seven nodded. Del helped her into position straddling one of her thighs. Seven grunted and her hips jerked against Del's thigh when their bodies came into contact.

"Lift up," Del coached, urging Seven to support her weight on her arms. She fought to keep from thrusting up into Seven when her slick wet heat slid against her soaking her leg.

Seven moaned when the change in position pressed her harder against Del's thigh.

"Good, just like that…" Del encouraged. She brought her hands up and cupped the breasts she had been dreaming about for so long. Seven whimpered and thrust hard against Del's firm thigh. "That's right, Love…you're in control here… take what you need," Del urged, pressing her thigh tighter into Seven's center as she continued to caress her breasts.

Seven couldn't take anymore, indescribable sensations were flooding her body. Unable to stop herself, she thrust repeatedly against Del's thigh.

Del continued to murmur encouragingly to Seven as her pace became more frantic. Her hands never ceased their worship of Seven's breasts. Knowing Seven was close, Del lifted up enough to lave one of her rock hard nipples before gently sucking it into her mouth…

Seven let out an inarticulate cry, trembling violently as her orgasm roared through her body. Unable to support herself any longer she slumped down onto Del.

Del's breath left in a whoosh when Seven's full weight crashed down on her but she held on tight to her twitching body. Her heart was overflowing with love for this incredible woman, marveling at all the things she had over come to finally reach this place, here in her arms.

"Seven…Seven." Del pushed against Seven's shoulder. Seven had not moved or made a sound since she climaxed though she could feel the still frantic beating of her heart and hear Seven's labored breathing. Del was trapped beneath her and she was much heavier than she looked. "Seven…come on, Love…you need to move," Del tried again.

Seven muttered in complaint, her muscles were limp and she could barely summon the energy to move. She had just had the most incredible experience of her life. Her mind felt groggy, not to mention the fact she was comfortable right were she was. Finally at Del's repeated urging she managed to slide off her and onto the floor. She shivered, immediately feeling chilled after being pressed to the heat of Del's body.

Del drew Seven against her so their bodies met down their length. Seven pressed closer and relaxed with a sigh, burying her face into Del's neck. Del wrapped her arms around Seven's back and held her tight.

"Warning…holodeck time will expire in five minutes."

They both jumped when the computer spoke. For a little while they had actually forgotten where they really were.

Seven wrapped her arm around Del when she tried to move away. "No…don't go."

"We have to… the holodeck is going to shut down in a few minutes. Come on, we have to get dressed."

"Don't want to," Seven muttered petulantly, tightening her hold on Del.

Del could sense how disoriented Seven still was by what she had experienced and she was loath to make her move but she had no intention of getting caught naked in the holodeck. For all she knew a crewman was waiting anxiously outside the door for their time to expire. It was not uncommon for an impatient crewmember to barge into the holodeck the second the allotted time was up.

"Do you really want someone from the crew to find us in here naked…like say Chakotay or perhaps Captain Janeway?" Del asked calmly.

That got a response out of Seven. She jumped, then glared at Del as she reached for her clothes.

"Warning, Holodeck time expires in one minute."

"Come mere," Del said urgently, knowing she was going to catch hell for this, but not caring. Seven was more important. She motioned Seven over next to her as she quickly gathered up their clothes in a bundle and tucked it under her arm. "Computer initiate a site to site transport. Two to transport directly to my quarters. Energize. "

The computer beam took them just as the holodeck doors slid open.

Captain Janeway stepped into the empty holodeck and looked around curiously. A program had been running when she arrived and she had been waiting for it to complete. She walked over and saw two winter parkas and boots laying on the floor just inside the door. Frowning she walked further into the empty holodeck. Her eyebrows shot up when she spotted the silky bra laying on the floor. She turned on her heels and headed for the door, determined to find out who had been running a program and just where they had disappeared to…

Seven stared at Del when they materialized in the middle of their quarters. She looked down as if surprised to find them still nude. Standing in the brightly lit room, Seven was suddenly very aware of her implants. She crossed her arms across her abdomen in an attempt to hide the most obvious one.

Oh no, you don't, Del thought when she caught Seven's movement. She quickly stepped over to Seven and attempted to gently pulled her arms down to her side. Seven held firm, then unable to resist the pleading look in Del's eyes relented and let her arms drop to her sides.

"Don't ever hide yourself from me. You are so beautiful…all of you." Del reached out and stroked a finger tip over the implant in Seven's clavicle making her shiver. Continuing down her finger brushed the soft area between Seven's breasts. "So beautiful," she murmured huskily. Her finger slipped lower, tracing along the bands of alternating flesh and metal of Seven's abdominal implant. Stroking first a band of flesh, then the next of metal, her touch feather light. She smiled jubilantly when Seven whimpered and pressed into her touch.

Del took Seven's hand and led her into their bedroom. Seven started to tremble when they approached the bed. Drawing the shaking blond into her arms, Del pressed their bodies together, her hands running soothingly up and down Seven's back.

"Let me love you," she whispered in Seven's ear. Gently she urged her down onto the bed and turning Seven to face her, pressed the length of their bodies together. Kissing her softly, slowly, building her arousal. Del was in no hurry, they had all night now. When Del sensed Seven's ardor growing hotter, she carefully pressed Seven onto her back. Reaching down she grasped Seven's mesh covered hand and raised it above her head and toward the headboard. "Grab onto that and don't let go, no matter what," Del instructed.

Del rose up onto her knees and moved to hover over Seven. She kissed her passionately, pressing for entrance into her mouth. As her tongue explored every inch of Seven's mouth, her hands moved down to caress Seven's body; kneading her breasts then rolling her nipples between her fingers. Sliding down she laved a taut bud with her tongue before pulling the whole thing into her mouth and suckling gently. Seven began to whimper in need. The feelings stirring were even stronger than before.

"What are you doing to me?" Seven whimpered.

"Loving you," Del husked as her hand moved down Seven's abdomen. "Spread your legs for me, Love." She groaned when Seven's legs spread wide and her fingers slid into the wet hot folds waiting her. Sensing Seven's soaring excitement fueled her own.

Seven cried out and her hips started to move with every stroke of Del's fingers between her thighs. She grasped the headboard and held on for dear life.

Both were so caught up in the sensations swirling through them neither heard the ominous creaking.

Del's fingers moved lower and hovered outside Seven's entrance. Knowing this was Seven's first time she slowly slipped just the tip of her finger inside. Seven tensed at the penetration. Del kissed Seven deeply. "Just relax….just let it happen," she murmured against Seven's lips. When she felt the tension around her finger ease she slowly pressed deeper inside. She groaned, her own hips jerking as her finger slid fully inside Seven… she was incredibly tight. Del could feel the fluttering of her internal muscles around her finger and knew how close she was. She began to gently slide in and out of Seven, matching the rhythm of Seven's hips as they began to thrust. She brought her thumb in to play to press against the hard bundle of nerves with every stroke.

Seven cried out and her body arched lifting both of them off the bed as she came. Del held on tight, riding out her orgasm. When the spasms around her finger stilled, Del carefully pulled out of Seven. She slid completely on top of Seven, wrapping her arms around her spent and limp body.

It was some time before Seven stirred coming back to herself. She reached to wrap her arms around Del and found she could not move her left hand.

Del felt Seven's movement and slid off of her, worried that her weight was too much for her. "Are you alright?"

Seven smiled beautifully at Del making her heart clench with love. "Yes, but I can not seem to move my hand," she said, her puzzlement apparent.

Del got up on her knees and called for the lights. She stared, her mouth dropping open in amazement. Seven's fingers were embedded in the metal of the headboard. "Hang on, let me see what I can do." Del carefully pried Seven's fingers one at a time out of the metal.

Once her hand was free Seven sat up and her eyes widened when she saw the perfect indentation of her fingers left in the headboard. Seven watched Del run her fingers through the depressions with a contented look on her face.

"You like it…that I lost control," Seven said, confused as to why Del was not afraid of her lack of self control. She could have easily injured her.

Del looked up and reached out to cup Seven's. "It's kind of hard to explain, but yes, it makes me feel very special to know that my touch can affect you so strongly."

Seven thought back to the holodeck and the amazing sense of power she had felt as she watched Del climax beneath her. Seven smiled and her eyes sparked with arousal just thinking about touching Del.

Seven rose up on her knees and moved close to Del until their knees touched. Reaching out, she gently palmed Del's breast and gave it a gentle squeeze. Del groaned and pressed into Seven's hand. "I understand," Seven murmured, increasing the pressure of her caress.

Seven guided Del down onto her back, then lifted Del's hand and pressed her fingers into the indentations in the headboard. "Hold on tight," Seven instructed, her eyes glittering with desire.

"Oh God," Del groaned. It was the last intelligible sound she made for quite some time…

Seven's eyes slowly fluttered open and she gazed down at the blond head resting on her chest. Del was still asleep, her arm was wrapped securely around Seven's middle and her thigh raised and resting across Seven's effectively trapping her in place. Seven didn't mind a bit, she relished the feel of Del's body pressed so intimately against hers.

She thought back to the night before and was surprised to feel a surge of renewed arousal flash through her. All her reading had not prepared her for the reality of becoming Del's lover. Even after having experienced it, she could not begin to explain the incredible feelings and sensations that had run rampant through her body.

Seven had not really understood when Del had tried to explain how a physical relationship could bring two people who loved each other even closer. She knew how she felt about Del and could not imagine feeling anything deeper than that. Now she realized just how mistaken she had been. Unable to resist touching the tempting flesh under her fingers she began to run her hand up and down Del's back.

Del let out a contented purr and pressed closer to the warmth of her lover's body. Opening her eyes she smiled at the sight of the full breast directly in front of her. She pressed a warm kiss to the soft flesh, eliciting a groan from the body beneath her. Del lifted up and looked down into Seven's beautiful visage. It was a dream come true being here with Seven after a night of loving each other.

"Good morning, Love," Del greeted softly, leaning down for a kiss.

Del moaned when Seven opened her mouth silently urging her to deepen the kiss. Her tongue plunged into Seven's mouth battling with Seven's in an increasingly erotic dance. Del slid further on top of Seven and pressed herself against Seven's leg as her passions quickly rose.

"The time is 0630," intoned the computer.

Del pulled away in frustration and flopped over onto her back. "Damn computer," she muttered. She gasped when Seven slid on top of her and straddled one of her thighs. "We don't have time for this," Del panted, quickly losing the battle with her raging libido as Seven pressed insistently against her.

"Please…" Seven begged.

Unable to resist the plea, Del shifted position under Seven so that Seven's thigh pressed against her center. She pushed her thigh tighter into the slick wetness between Seven's legs. They quickly established a rhythm, thrusting hard as they neared the edge. Seven came first and Del quickly followed.

Del cradled Seven's limp body in her arms as she recovered. Seven had learned last night that Del could only support her greater weight for a short period of time. She slid off to the side with a contented sigh and wrapped her arm around Del's chest.

"The time is 0700," announced the computer.

Seven pulled Del closer. She did not want to leave her or the warmth of their bed, having never felt so absolutely contented in her life.

"Come on, Love, we have to get up, you're going to be late."

"NO! I don't want to," Seven pouted, burying her face in Del's neck.

Del laughed to herself, well this was certainly different. She wondered what the crew would think of Seven if they could see her now.

"Duty calls," Del insisted.

After much grumbling and groaning Seven finally made her way into the ensuite to prepare for her day.

Del would have loved to follow Seven and introduce her to the pleasures of showering together but she knew they did not have time no matter how tempting the prospect of all that wet, slick, delicious skin might be. Del groaned when she felt herself harden and begin to throb. Shaking away her lustful thoughts she grabbed her robe and headed out into the main room to rustle them up a quick breakfast.

After a quick breakfast and a not so quick kiss at the door Seven finally headed for Astrometrics. She passed several crewmen on the way to the lab and could not help wondering at their strange behavior. Several had stopped and simply stared as she approached, others had smiled at her and greeted her pleasantly.

A thoroughly confused Seven entered the Astrometrics lab and set about her day's work, silently counting the minutes until lunch. Del had promised to meet her in the mess hall after her appointment with the doctor.


Chapter Fourteen

The turbolift doors opened admitting Del to the bridge.

"Commander," Chakotay greeted with a smile. He couldn't help looking at her curiously. He had heard the rumor early that morning about Seven of Nine and wondered just what the Commander had to do with Seven's unusual behavior.

Del nodded in response to Chakotay's greeting. "Is the Captain available?"

The Doctor had released her to full duty and she was anxious to get back to work.

"She's been in her ready room all morning but didn't say not to disturb her."

"Thanks," Del acknowledged as she strode toward the ready room door.

"Hey Commander!"

Del stopped and walked over to a beckoning Tom Paris. "Hi Tom, what's up?" she asked with a smile. She had decided maybe she had misjudged the helmsman and was grateful for the help he had provided on her holoprogram.

"How was your holoprogram? Did Seven like it?" he asked with a smirk, waggling his eyebrows for emphasis.

Del's expression immediately turned frosty. Tom's smirk quickly disappeared. He remembered quite well being on the receiving end of Del's temper in the mess hall.

"I just um…wondered if it was close to the original… I meant the umm program," Tom stammered nervously.

"It was fine. Thank you again for your help," Del said, her expression never softening.

"Any time Commander," Tom said sincerely before turning back to his controls.

Del noticed several other crewmembers interested in their conversation but none was willing to meet her eyes. She turned on her heels and headed for Janeway's ready room.

Janeway sat on the couch staring out at the passing streaks of light. She always enjoyed the sight outside her window with her ship at warp. There were reports that needed to be finished but she had not been able to concentrate. Her mind kept going back to what she had found in the holodeck last night.

The program had not been one she was familiar with so she used her command codes to query the computer security logs. She had felt no hesitation at disregarding the privacy protocols to find out who had been in the holodeck and what program they were running. After all, whoever it was had violated ship's protocol by initiating a site to site transport. There had been no medical emergency; she had checked. She once again felt that slightly sick feeling in the pit of her stomach just thinking about it as she had when she discovered that Del and Seven had been in the holodeck before her and had transported directly to their quarters.

Even after seeing them entwined on a biobed in sickbay, she had harbored some faint hope that their relationship had not fully progressed. Finding a silky bra in the holodeck had crushed that. You're being ridiculous, Janeway berated herself. You should be happy for Seven. This is what you always wanted for Seven, to fully regain her humanity. But no matter how much she tried to convince herself she couldn't stop the lingering sense of sadness at lost possibilities. Janeway was pulled out of her thoughts by the door chime. Glad for the distraction she called entrance.

The door slid open and admitted the last person Janeway wanted to see. She felt an immediate surge of something she steadfastly refused to name. Forcing her command persona to the fore she walked over and stood behind her desk.

"What can I do for you, Commander?"

Del was surprised at the Captain's cool tone. Janeway had been angry the last time they had spoken in sickbay after Del insisted on repeatedly turning off the doctor. She had apologized and thought they were past their somewhat adversarial relationship.

Del mentally shrugged her shoulder, wondering what, if anything, Janeway's attitude had to do with her relationship with Seven. Not to mention the fact that they had butted heads from their first meeting. "First, I wanted to thank you for allowing Seven to remain off duty while I was incapacitated. I really appreciated it."

Janeway nodded, making no comment. She had not done it for Del but for Seven.

"Second, the Doctor released me to full duty and I would like to return to work."

"That's good news," Janeway said, forcing a smile. "Report to the bridge for Alpha shift tomorrow." She opened her mouth to reprimand Del for inappropriate use of the transporter then stopped herself. She did not really want to know why she had transported herself and Seven directly to their quarters.

"Was there something else, Captain?" Del asked politely, watching Janeway curiously. She could sense there was something the Captain was holding back. She was getting a mix of emotions from her. She was surprised Janeway hadn't reprimanded her for using the transporter last night. She assumed an unauthorized transport would show up in the security logs.

Janeway frowned, realizing the Commander was most likely trying to read her emotions. "That'll be all, Commander. Welcome back."

Happy to be going back to work and pleased not to be called on her use of the transporter, Del quickly made her exit.

B'Elanna made her way determinedly toward the mess hall. Rumors concerning Seven of Nine were once again flying around the ship at warp speed. Where at one time she would have dismissed the rumor as pure fancy with the recent changes in Seven anything was possible. The mess hall doors slid open and B'Elanna spotted Seven at her and Del's usual table. Making her way over to the table she sat down without waiting to be invited.

Seven looked up from the pad and smiled brightly at B'Elanna. She felt so incredible, like she was walking on air, and just couldn't hide it, no matter how hard she tried.

"Hi, B'Elanna."

B'Elanna's jaw dropped open. Seven's normally placid features were suffused with

warmth and her eyes were sparkling with emotion. Her happiness seemed to be radiating off her in waves.

"Gee, Seven, if I didn't know better, I'd swear you just got laid," B'Elanna joked.

Seven's face flushed bright red and she looked away. Getting laid was one of the terms Del had explained to her. She wondered how B'Elanna could possibly know about what had happened between her and Del.

B'Elanna's mouth gapped open in shock and she did a good impression of a gasping fish. Oh Kahless, Del did it! They actually slept together! Recovering quickly B'Elanna mentally rubbed her hands together…this was going to be good.

"So you and Del huh?" B'Elanna asked a still blushing Seven.

Seven was saved from having to reply by Del's arrival. She immediately noticed Seven's flushed face and sensed her discomfort. She glanced sternly over at B'Elanna, wondering what was going on. She didn't sense any hostility on B'Elanna's part, just a raging curiosity.

"Hey Del, how are you feeling today?" B'Elanna asked with a sly grin.

Del sighed mentally, wondering just what B'Elanna knew. Nothing traveled faster on a starship than gossip and she had made no secret of the fact that she planned to invite Seven into her holoprogram. Ignoring her for the moment, she leaned down and placed a soft kiss on Seven's lips. "Hi," she murmured softly before turning to slide into the seat opposite her.

"I'm doing great, B'Elanna. How about you?" She glared at B'Elanna, meeting her eyes directly, daring her to comment further. As with Paris earlier, she was determined that her and Seven's personal life not be bandied about for the crew's amusement.

"Good…I'm good." B'Elanna stood suddenly. "I should get back to Engineering," she said, not wanting to anger Del. She had already heard from Tom about the frosty reception he had gotten when he tried to tease Del about her and Seven. She really couldn't fault her for being protective of Seven after the way the crew had treated her. Herself included, she was embarrassed to admit.

Del watched B'Elanna's hasty retreat. She really wasn't angry with the engineer. She just didn't want Seven to be uncomfortable with the new facet of their relationship.

Seven observed the interaction between Del and B'Elanna wondering what was going on. She was surprised at B'Elanna's rapid departure. She had seemed eager to question her before Del arrived.

"Are you doing okay… with everything, Love?" she asked in concern, wondering if things were happening too fast for Seven.

Seven smiled broadly at the endearment. "Yes, but I do not understand how B'Elanna knew that we had made love." Her confusion was apparent.

"Tell me what happened, after you left our cabin this morning."

A wide smile lit her face as she related the chain of events including the strange behavior of the crewmen she had contact with during the day. When she was finished Del grinned. "And were you by chance smiling the whole time?" Del asked teasingly. Seven blinked in surprise then nodded, blushing lightly. "Well, Seven, you have to admit it's definitely unusual for you to walk around with a smile on your face. B'Elanna was just joking, she didn't know but when you blushed she realized she had accidentally stumbled on the truth."

"B'Elanna is known on the ship as the Gossip Queen. Even I have heard the term applied to her. It will soon be all over the ship that we are lovers," Seven said, looking suddenly worried. "I was not even aware I was smiling, until just now… I just… I've never felt so good…so…" Seven trailed off, unable to describe what she was feeling. "I did not intentionally wish others to know of the change in our relationship."

"Well, you're right in one aspect. It's no ones business what we do in our personal life. But, by the same token, I don't care if people know we're lovers. I'm proud to be your lover, Seven."

"You are?" Seven said, sounding amazed. She was concerned that Del would be upset if others on board knew that they had become lovers.

Realizing what the problem was Del reached out and gently cupped Seven's cheek. "I told you before, Seven. I'm proud to be with you, anywhere, anytime, anyplace."

Seven's chest tightened with the love she felt for this amazing woman. "I love you," she whispered.

"I love you too," Del said, her love shining brightly in her eyes. Del resisted the urge to lean over and kiss Seven. Realizing that this was not the time or the place, no matter how much she wanted to. "Are you ready for some lunch?" she asked in a quick change of subject.

Del and Seven were just finishing their lunch when a small blond approached their table. Del smiled brightly, recognizing Carrie immediately from their encounter outside the holodeck.

"Hi Carrie."

"Hi, Commander, Seven."

Del could sense the woman's nervousness. "Why don't you join us?"

"Thank you, but I can't, I have to get back to duty." Carrie was uncertain around the two beautiful women, they made her nervous. She summoned up her courage. "I was just umm…" Carrie blushed self-consciously. Taking a deep breath she tried again. "Today is Janice's birthday. I'm throwing her a party in the holodeck and wondered if you and Seven would like to come," she invited in a nervous rush.

Del glanced over at Seven trying to gauge her feelings. She looked a bit anxious at the prospect of attending the party. She sent her a brief surge of reassurance and she relaxed slightly. This was the type of thing she had been hoping for when she began to bring Seven to the mess hall every day.

Del smiled up at Carrie, making her blush again. "Sure, we'll be there. What time?"

"1900 in Holodeck Two."

""We'll see you then," Del promised.

Carrie quickly said her good byes, pleased with herself that she had asked the Commander and Seven to attend. She knew Janice would be happy.

Del turned her attention back to Seven when Carrie walked away. "Have you ever been to a birthday party? It'll be fun."

"Yes, Neelix threw a party for the Captain on her birthday. The Captain requested I attend with her."

"And?" Del encouraged, knowing there was more.

"It was not fun," Seven stated bluntly.

"Well this will be different. You're attending with me and we'll make our own fun…okay?"

Seven nodded but her skepticism was very apparent.

"Look on the bright side. We'll at least get a piece of cake out of the deal and maybe even a scoop of ice cream." Seven had developed a definite sweet tooth. Del chuckled when Seven looked suddenly more interested. "Come on, you need to get back to Astrometrics and I need to catch up on some reports before I go back to work tomorrow."

"Are you sure you are well enough to go back to work? Seven asked worriedly. She was apprehensive for some reason about Del returning to full duty. She wasn't able to shake the fear that something might happen to her.

Del felt Seven's fear and tried to reassure her as best she could. "I really am fine, Seven. I wouldn't be going back to duty if I wasn't. Even the doctor admitted I was 100%." Del reached out and gently stroked Seven's arm. "It'll be alright…nothing is going to happen to me."

Seven wished she could believe that. She tried to push her fears aside but knew for a fact how dangerous their existence on Voyager really was. She was also very aware of the fact that she had no control over the situation. Sighing she met Del's eyes and allowed herself to get lost in her love filled blue eyes. "I love you," she whispered to Del.

"I love you too, Seven. Everything will work out. Now come on, before you're late."

Del glanced around the holodeck curiously. She and Seven were running a bit late. The party was already in full swing. The locale was a old-time bar. A waist high oak bar ran the length of the back wall with rows of liquor bottles lining the shelf behind it. There were tables set up on the same side of the room as the bar. The other side of the room was dominated by a large dance floor. A number of couples were already dancing to the music issuing from an old fashion jukebox in the far corner of the room.

It didn't take long before their entrance was noticed and people began to whisper. Del felt the ripple of emotions across the room as word of their arrival spread. Del couldn't hold back a grin. The emotions ranged from shock and envy, to downright lust.

She had convinced Seven to change out of her biosuit and into more casual clothing. They were dressed similarly in silky button down shirts and casual trousers. Seven's shirt was a pale blue and her pants navy blue. Del's shirt was a dark midnight blue and her trousers khaki colored. With their blue eyes and blond hair they made a striking pair.

Seven had even consented to take her hair down from its customary tight bun, allowing it to flow freely about her shoulders. It softened her face and made the normally very beautiful woman truly stunning. The combination of the dramatic change in hairstyle and the edition of new clothes, created a spectacular difference in Seven's appearance.

Del spotted the birthday girl. Linking her arm through Seven's, she guided her over to the bar.

"Hi Janice. Happy Birthday."

Janice stared at the two women for several moments, then blushed when she realized it. "Hi Commander. I'm so glad you could come," she said, reaching out to shake Del's hand warmly. She turned her attention to Seven. "Hi Seven, thanks for coming." Janice reached out for Seven's hand and took it gently in both of hers. "You look wonderful."

She had always been intrigued by the beautiful blond but had been put off by her unapproachable manner. She couldn't get over the change in the woman's behavior. Carrie had told her that she had invited the Commander and Seven. She truthfully never expected Seven to attend. Much less wearing a total new outfit and not her customary biosuit. Janice had noticed the stir her and the Commander's arrival had caused.

Seven blushed, totally amazed by the woman's touch. "Thank you," she said shyly.

"Where's Carrie?" Del asked.

"She's playing bartender."

Del turned and looked for the small blond. She was at the opposite end of the bar serving drinks to several crewmen.

The door to the holodeck swooshed open admitting more party goers.

"Your fans await," Del teased Janice when several people called to her.

Janice blushed prettily. "Thanks again for coming. I'll try and catch up with you later. Carrie and I would still like to have lunch with you both sometime."

Del reached out and squeezed Janice's shoulder warmly. "We'd like that too. Now git…your public calls."

Janice laughed and headed to greet her guests.

Del and Seven made their way over to a table occupied by B'Elanna, Tom, Harry and Megan Delaney.

Harry jumped up and pulled over two chairs from a nearby table.

"Thanks, Harry." Del smiled, guiding Seven into one of the chairs. "I'm going to get us something to drink." She felt a surge of anxiety from Seven. Del leaned down, "Relax, I'll be right back," she whispered for Seven's ears only.

Del quickly returned. She looked around the table curiously when she noticed Seven's uncomfortable demeanor and wondered what had transpired in her short absence.

"I was just telling Seven how great she looks," Harry commented, drawing a frown from his date.

"Yeah…she looks hot," Tom piped up with a leer, earning a jab in the ribs from B'Elanna.

Seven looked down at the table, obviously very ill at ease. She wasn't used to this kind of attention.

Del wrapped her arm around Seven's shoulders drawing her close, feeling Seven relax at her reassuring touch.

"Yes, she does look wonderful. Just remember… she's taken…very taken," she said, only partly teasingly. Del leaned toward Seven and gently brushed their lips together.

Seven's eyes locked with Del and everyone else in the room disappeared. A sweet smile appeared on her face and stayed there.

B'Elanna snickered at the look of envy on both men's faces. Tom and Harry's angry glares just made her laugh. Speculation was running rampant onboard as to just how far their relationship had progressed. She had not told anyone that she knew for a fact the two women were lovers.

"So who's up for dancing?" B'Elanna asked, looking around the table. The current music was fast with a pulsing beat. Harry and his date decided to dance and with some coaxing B'Elanna convinced Tom to dance with her.

"Do you want to dance?" Del asked Seven.

"I do not know how," Seven admitted. She watched the gyrating couples on the dance floor skeptically. It did not look like something she would wish to do.

"I'm not much for fast dancing myself, Del said, having interpreted Seven's look. "Why don't we wait for a slow song then I'll teach you…"

They sat out quite a few songs waiting for the music to slow down. Several crewmembers stopped by the table to ask Del how she was doing and welcome her back.

Del watched, amused at the varied reactions of the crew when they spotted her arm draped casually over Seven's shoulders and Seven's mesh covered hand resting comfortably on her thigh. Del felt Seven relax and her self-assurance grow as the evening progressed. Adding to her confidence was the fact that everyone who approached their table made a point of speaking to her as well. The crew of Voyager was obviously beginning to see Seven in a whole new way.

A slow song started to play. Del stood and offered her hand to Seven. "May I have this dance?" she requested formally. A brilliant smile lit her face when Seven immediately stood and took her hand. Several people stopped and stared when they stepped onto the dance floor.

Del took Seven's right hand in hers and stepped close to Seven. Her other hand dropped down and settled comfortably in the small of Seven's back. "Put your other hand on my shoulder," Del instructed. "Now just follow me and let yourself move to the music. I'll guide you by the pressure against your back."

Seven glanced around nervously at the other couples on the floor, very aware of all the eyes on them.

"Ignore them," Del insisted, "it's just you and me and the music."

Del began to gently sway her body to the music. Seven was very stiff to start but eventually picked up the rhythm and moved in concert with Del. When Del felt Seven's movements become more confident she began to lead them slowly around their little section of the dance floor.

Seven sighed when the song ended. She was just getting the hang of it.

Del smiled when she heard Seven. "Did you like that?"

Seven nodded.

The next song started and it was a slow one. "Want to go again?" Del asked.

"Yes," Seven said enthusiastically.

Seven's eyebrow arched when Del drew them closer together this time. The first time there had been a space between their bodies as they danced. This time Del pressed their bodies together. "This is more how lover's dance," Del said, in answer to Seven's unspoken question. "Just put your arms around my neck this time."

Seven was more than willing to comply. She started in surprise when Del began to move with the music. The swaying of her body caused it to rub deliciously against hers. Seven began to move with her and gasped at the sensation of their bodies moving together. Her nipples hardened and she unconsciously groaned, as her ardor began to rise. She leaned back and looked up into Del's grinning face.

Del was quite aware of Seven's arousal. She felt a bit damp herself. Having Seven's breasts pressed against her chest while she was wearing a thin shirt and bra verses her customary thick biosuit was stimulating to say the least.

"Something the matter?" she asked Seven with a smirk.

Seven shifted position and her leg slipped between Del's. Her thigh rubbed against Del's crotch as she swayed her hips. Del groaned. Seven smiled triumphantly. After last night she was more than confident in her ability to arouse Del.

"I did not realize dancing was a type of foreplay," Seven murmured, beginning to really enjoy dancing.

Del laughed and tried to back up a bit. She was becoming more aroused by the second. Seven was having none of it and pressed herself more firmly against Del as they continued to dance.

"It's not specifically a form a foreplay, but it can be. People also dance for just the pleasure of the activity itself. Dancing with a friend is very different than dancing with a lover."

Seven was rapidly losing interest in the subject. She was much more interested in the feel of Del's body sliding against hers.

They finished out the dance in silence, each content in the other's arms.

Del reluctantly backed away from Seven when the music ended. Her nipples were hard and she was throbbing something fierce.

"Maybe we should sit this one out," she suggested, needing time to cool down her libido.

Seven's lip thrust out in a slight pout. "I want to dance."

Del was saved when the next song started. The music quickly picked up and became fast.

They made their way back to the table where B'Elanna and Tom were taking a break from the dancing as well.

"Having a good time?" B'Elanna asked Seven once they were seated. Seven nodded. "You were a natural," she praised.

Seven blushed at the compliment.

Seven and Del were standing at the bar talking to Carrie and Janice when Del sensed a change in the emotional atmosphere of the room. She looked over to see the Captain enter the holodeck on Chakotay's arm. Del glanced over at Seven to see if she noted the Captain's arrival and her reaction to it. Seven watched placidly as the Captain and Chakotay made their way toward the bar.

"Commander, Seven," Janeway greeted coolly.

Del could sense Janeway surprise as her eyes slid over Seven's hair and attire. Her eyes locked unconsciously for several moments on Del's arm that was wrapped around Seven's waist, her hand resting comfortably on Seven's hip. Del didn't miss the quick scowl that crossed Janeway's face before she could stop it.

Chakotay also took note of Seven's new look. He nodded a greeting to Del then turned his attention to Seven. "You look very nice, Seven," he complimented, by way of greeting. He was amazed at the dramatic transformation Seven had undergone since Del came onboard.

"Yes, Seven," Janeway agreed, "you do look very nice."

Seven blushed and managed to murmur a quiet thank you.

Del squeezed Seven's waist providing a comforting presence. An uncomfortable silence reined for several moments. Janeway finally seemed to pull herself together and greeted Janice, wishing her a happy birthday. Del took the opportunity for her and Seven to escape. She quickly excused them and they made their way back to their table.

"You do not like Captain Janeway," Seven stated as soon as they sat down.

Del was surprised that Seven had learned to read her so well. "What makes you say that?" she asked seriously, making no attempt to deny it.

"Your whole body stiffens when she's around and your face becomes blank."

Del was spared commenting when Harry showed up at the table minus his date. The three chatted amicably. Del was pleased that Seven was participating in the conversation and seemed to be having a good time. The music turned slow again but before Del could suggest they head back to the dance floor, Harry beat her to the punch, asking Seven to dance.

Seven glanced nervously over at Del, not sure what to do.

Del leaned over close to Seven so she wouldn't be overheard. "It's up to you but why don't you go ahead. You might enjoy it."

Del smiled encouragingly at Seven. She knew Harry would be a gentleman. If it had been Tom Paris or some of the other crewmen she had met she might have reacted differently. Del really wanted Seven to experience as many of the things she had missed by spending her formative years with the Borg as possible.

Harry waited patiently for Seven to decide.

With one last look at Del, Seven stood and stepped over next to Harry's chair. He immediately stood with a broad smile on his face and offered his hand to Seven. She hesitated then took his hand.

When Harry and Seven stepped onto the dance floor they quickly garnered just as many stares as Del and Seven had earlier. Del watched as Harry leaned forward and said something to Seven. She nodded in response and allowed him to take her into his arms.

When the two began to dance, Del couldn't help her protective instincts from rearing its head. Getting up she made her way toward the dance floor and positioned herself in a dark corner where she had a clear view of Harry and Seven.

B'Elanna grinned when she spotted Harry dancing with Seven. She danced over with her partner to see how Seven was doing. She felt surprisingly protective of the blond these days. She could see how stiff Seven was moving but she gave her credit for trying. She winked encouragingly when she caught Seven's eye, drawing a brief smile from her.

The other person intently watching the beautiful blond Astrometrics officer dance with the young ensign was Captain Janeway. She continued to watch from the sidelines, surprised to see Seven dancing with anyone, let alone Harry Kim. She smiled indulgently at Seven's attempt, noticing how uncomfortable she was in Harry's arms. Maybe I should cut in? she thought, unwilling to acknowledge the hint of excitement at the thought of holding Seven in her arms. Making up her mind, she stepped purposely forward toward Seven and Harry.

Janeway stopped dead in her tracks when Del stepped out of the shadows and approached the couple. Del smiled and slapped Harry companionably on the back. He smiled and said something to both of them, before he turned and walked away. Janeway's jaw dropped open in shock when Seven stepped into Del's arms and wrapped her arms around her neck. Their bodies seemed to melt together. All the stiffness Seven had exhibited when dancing with Harry was gone. She moved in a sensual rhythm against Del, her face aglow with pleasure.

With her changed attire and the way she moved, you would have never known Seven had ever been anything other than fully human. She truly had come full circle and fulfilled every hope Janeway had ever had for her. This was what Janeway had envisioned all those months ago when she severed Seven from the collective.

It finally registered with the Captain emotionally as well as intellectually that Del had accomplished what she could not. Del freely offered Seven the love she herself could never admit to having for her. She accepted the fact that while she cared deeply for Seven, she could never give her the life she deserved. She was married to her ship and always would be. It was a choice she had made early in her career and one she knew she had truly never regretted. As she watched the two women dance she made a vow to reach out to Commander MacMillan and to support Seven 100% in her choice of mate.

Del had been watching Janeway observe them from the edge of the dance floor. Even among all the people present she was able to pick up her emotions they were so strong. She was surprised when she felt a sense of acceptance and peace come over Janeway just before she walked away.

"Is everything alright?" Seven asked, noticing Del seemed distracted.

Del laughed. Isn't that my line," she teased. "I'm fine. Are you having a good time?" she quickly changed the subject, not wanting to discuss Captain Janeway, at least not tonight.

"Yes, I like to dance with you," Seven said with a loving smile. "And everyone has been very friendly all evening."

"I'm glad." Del had enjoyed seeing Seven come out of her shell tonight but her interest in the party was waning. She was not much of one for parties to start with but had wanted Seven to mix with the crew. "But I think maybe it's time we headed back to our quarters."

Seven frowned. "Do you not enjoy dancing with me?"

"I enjoy dancing with you very much. But I thought we could retire to our quarters and I could show you some new moves," Del said, quirking her eyebrow at Seven and smiling mischievously.

It took Seven several seconds to get it but when she did a full smile took up residence on her face. She grabbed Del's hand and quickly pulled her off the dance floor and headed for the door.

"Wait, Seven, we should say goodnight to everyone."

Seven shook her head, never releasing her firm grip on Del's hand. She had lost all interest in dancing, at least the type you did in public.

Del quickly waved goodbye as Seven pulled her out the door. She laughed at the shocked looks on several crewmen's faces.


Chapter Fifteen

"Mind if I join you?"

Del looked up from her lunch and choked on the bite she'd just taken. Captain Janeway stood next to the table with a cup of coffee in her hands. "Umm… sure Captain," she wheezed when she got her breath back.

Seven cocked her head, puzzled by Del's strange behavior. She glanced at the Captain and saw a quick smirk twist her lips before she took a sip of her coffee effectively hiding her expression.

Del stared at the Captain and wondered just what the hell the woman was up to. Janeway had been acting very strangely all morning. Del had arrived on the bridge for her first shift since being injured. Janeway had arrived a few minutes later and greeted her with a friendly smile and had spoken quite casually to her several times during their very quiet morning shift. Now Janeway showed up in the mess hall at lunchtime, a rarity for her, raised Del's doubts as to the woman's motives.

Janeway read Del's emotions easily. She really couldn't blame her for being suspicious, considering the way she had treated her since she came onboard. She had been trying all morning to get to know Del and keep her promise to herself to support Seven in her choice of partners. She knew herself well enough and had finally admitted her perceptions of the woman had been colored not only by her resentment of Del's relationship with Seven but her uneasiness with the woman's empathic abilities.

The truth was Janeway felt slightly guilty for the way she had treated the Commander. Del had been nothing but an asset to Voyager's crew and it was time she started to acknowledge her as such.

The Captain's introspection was broken when she glanced down at Seven's lunch. She had an absolutely huge piece of cake on her plate. "Is that birthday cake from last night?"

"Ah…huh…" Seven mumbled around a mouthful of cake.

Janeway's eyebrows shot up in shock at Seven's very ordinary response.

Del laughed and smiled indulgently at her lover. Cake had been the last thing on either of their minds last night but it was the first thing Seven had mentioned this morning. Del had contacted Neelix to see if there was any cake left and asked him to save a large piece for Seven.

"I didn't get a piece last night but luckily Neelix had some left," Seven answered more fully after swallowing her large mouthful of cake.

Janeway stared mesmerized at the smile of pleasure that lit up Seven's face. She had left the holodeck shortly after watching Del and Seven dance together, long before any cake was served. She mentally shook herself. The changes in Seven were so dramatic, and the emotions playing out freely across her face so fascinating, she could watch her all day. Janeway forced her thoughts away from Seven and focused on the reason she had come to the mess hall. She turned her attention to Del.

"The reason I stopped by is I wanted to talk to you, Commander."

Del stiffened and the smile disappeared from her face. She met Janeway's eyes directly. "Yes, Captain," she said placidly, though she was anything but.

"I wanted to let you know that you're being reassigned."

A scowl flashed across Del's face before she could stop it, but her expression quickly turned neutral again. She tried to brace herself. She just knew Janeway was going to exile her to the Gamma shift so she wouldn't have to work with her.

Janeway struggled to hide her smile. She knew the Commander thought the worst. "You're being reassigned to…Astrometrics."

Del's jaw dropped open in shock and she stared at the Captain incredulously. That was absolutely the last thing she expected. "I am?"

The Captain allowed a slight smile to cross her face. "Yes, Commander, you are. We're approaching a very volatile area of space with lots of spatial phenomenon. I need you and Seven to work together to plot a safe course for Voyager. I'm depending on both of you."

Del couldn't believe it. Without looking at Seven she knew she was smiling broadly. She could feel the waves of happiness and pleasure rolling off of her. Del met Janeway's eyes and smiled warmly at the woman.

"Thank you, Captain. We won't let you down," Del promised.

Janeway stood and picked up her empty coffee mug. "I have every confidence in you…in both of you," she said sincerely, meeting each woman's eyes before turning to walk away.

Del turned toward Seven grinning happily. The day was certainly looking up.

Del stood up and stretched. She had been working for several hours and her complaining stomach reminded her that it was past time for lunch. Glancing across the room, she saw Seven and Janice working closely together at a console.

The last few weeks had brought about continued changes in the former Borg. She was much more open with the crew. Well, not exactly open, Del admitted, laughing silently, but much more willing to interact with them on a social level. They had developed a friendship with Carrie and Janice and Del felt confident that Seven regarded them as her friends as well. Seven and Janice had hit it off and the two women worked well together.

Tuvok had approached Seven a few days ago. After the attack on her in the cargo bay by Daniels, he had taken it upon himself to manually check the alignment of all the security sensors on Voyager. It had taken him until now to complete the task. According to Tuvok, the sensors in the cargo bay were not the only sensors that had been tampered with. He had not been able to identify the guilty party. He asked Seven to work with someone from security to update all the security sensors on board with a new protocol that used the sensors themselves to scan and assigned a unique code to any crewmember who adjusted any security sensor, anywhere on the ship. The code and scan had to be completely undetectable by anyone aligning the sensors, authorized or not. The Captain and Tuvok, as Head of Security would be the only ones with the security clearance and authority to access the data.

Seven had managed to surprise both Del and Tuvok when she suggested Janice be assigned to help her. Janice was surprisingly like Seven in some ways. Once she got her teeth into something she went at it full tilt, forgetting to eat or sleep unless forced to.

"Hey, you two," Del called. "Time for a break. It's past lunchtime." Neither woman looked up from the console where they were working. "Come on…let's go… this will still be here when you get back."

"You two go ahead, Commander. I just need a few more minutes, I almost have this," Janice said distractedly.

That was what the woman had said over an hour ago when Del suggested lunch the first time. Del reached over and bodily pulled Seven away from the console. Seven looked startled then smiled sheepishly. She tended to forget that Del got hungry much more often than she did. While she spent much less time regenerating and was more dependent on her consumption of foodstuffs, she could still go for long periods of time without eating.

"You too," Del ordered Janice. Janice looked up and blinked as if just coming back to reality. "Let's go, Lieutenant. Don't make me call Carrie," she threatened teasingly.

Janice grimaced, then sighed in resignation. Her little blond lover was forever reading her the riot act for not taking care of herself.

Del laughed and punched Janice's arm playfully. The woman mock glared at Del but followed her and Seven meekly to the mess hall.

Seven's eyelids slowly fluttered open; she was getting used to the sensation of awakening. A loving smile spread across her face as she gazed down at the blond sleeping on her chest. The last two months had been amazing.

She had never realized how lonely and empty her days and nights were until Del's very unexpected arrival. She had quickly become such an integral part of her life. Now that they were lovers, Seven had a life she never dared dream was possible. She could not imagine going back to that existence. Sometimes her feelings for Del were so intense they scared her but Del always reassured her that she felt just as strongly for her and that it was perfectly normal to be a little scared.

Del awoke unsurprised to find herself half sprawled across Seven's naked body and Seven's arms wrapped firmly around her. It had been strange at first. In past relationships, she had inevitably ended up doing the holding. She wasn't used to being the one held. They were basically the same size, with the only real difference being Del's slight height advantage but because of Seven's implants, she was not only stronger than Del, but quite a bit heavier.

Del had quickly learned she could not hold Seven's weight for any significant amount of time. They always ended up sleeping as close as possible but after waking up a few times gasping for breath she had quickly gotten into the habit of laying on Seven, instead of the other way around. Seven was perfectly content to hold Del and she had grown to love the sensation of being held securely in Seven's loving arms.

Del lifted up her head and met warm blue eyes. "Morning, Love," she greeted, before leaning down for a kiss. They had the day off and Del planned on spending at least part of it in bed.

Seven hummed into the kiss, her libido quickly rising. She could not seem to get enough of touching Del and having Del touch her. Del had explained that it was a common reaction for new lovers not to be able to keep their hands off each other, and that with time, the strength of the feelings might ebb a bit. She couldn't imagine that happening; she was sure she would thrill to Del's touch to her dying breath.

The kiss quickly turned passionate and Del slid fully on top of Seven. Seven whimpered and tried to press closer to Del. Her tongue demanded entrance into Del's mouth, which was happily granted. It was Del's turn to groan as Seven's tongue began to ravage her mouth. They were both gasping for air by the time the kiss broke.

Del slid down slightly and began placing open mouth kisses down Seven's chest. Seven's hand came up and grasped the back of Del's head when she took a rapidly hardening nipple into her mouth and sucked. Del grinned around the nipple in her mouth when Seven reached up with her other hand and took hold of the headboard, her fingers sliding into the indentations. Seven didn't even seem to be aware of what she had done. Del had discovered that Seven's abdominal implant was not only very sensitive but an erogenous zone. She moved down a bit further and ran her tongue across the metal bands of the implant. Seven's head went back and her back arched as she let out a loud moan. Her hand moved to Del's shoulder and tried to urge her lower. Del refused to budge and continued to lave Seven's implant with her tongue. She could see that Seven had a death grip on the headboard.


Del looked up into Seven's pleading eyes. "Tell me what you need." She had been trying to get Seven to be more vocal about expressing her pleasure as well as encouraging her to verbalize exactly what she wanted.

"Please," Seven begged, as she tried to push Del lower.

Del shook her head and then swiped the flat of her tongue across Seven's abdomen making her arousal ratchet up another notch. "Tell me," she insisted hoarsely. Her own arousal soaring with Seven's.

"Lick me," Seven moaned breathlessly, even as she blushed.

Del growled and clamped her legs shut against the surging pulse between them, trying to forestall her climax. This was the first time Seven had ever stated what she wanted and it's affect on Del was much stronger than she had anticipated. She quickly slipped between Seven's legs spreading them wide to make room for her shoulders. She wasted no time in fulfilling Seven's request. Seven's hips bucked up into her face and she whimpered in pleasure. Del wrapped her arms around her thighs trying to hold her in place as she worshipped the pulsing flesh under her tongue. Moving down a bit and spreading Seven's legs further open, she thrust inside her with her tongue pumping rhythmically. She could feel how close Seven was, her internal muscles clamped down on her tongue and tried to pull her further inside. Del pulled away causing Seven to groan in protest but it was short lived. She latched onto her throbbing nub and began to suck as she slipped her fingers between Seven's legs. It only took a single deep thrust and Seven exploded, her body arching with the strength of her climax. Del held on for dear life, never moving her fingers from their warm haven.

Del's arousal was at a frenzied peak after Seven's climax. She slid up and began to thrust against Seven's thigh. She gasped when Seven flipped them over and she found herself on her back with a very aroused Seven on top of her. Seven wasted no time, she pressed her fingers into the hot wet heat between Del's legs and thrust inside. She had become very confident in her ability to please Del. Del moaned and her hips pumped trying to pull Seven deeper. Seven's fingers took up the hard, fast rhythm she knew Del liked and latched onto her breast sucking her nipple into her mouth. Del whimpered at the dual assault on her senses. Already so close from making love to Seven, she lost control and a huge orgasm blasted through her body.

Del wasn't sure how much time had passed when she became aware again. She was laying on her side with Seven behind her spooned against her body, her hand cupping her breast possessively. They had made love several more times before exhaustion claimed them.

"What time is it?" she asked groggily, too relaxed to even lift her head. She felt Seven move to look at the chronometer in the headboard.


"Oh shit!" Del exclaimed, pulling away and sitting up suddenly. "Janice and Carrie are going to be here in less than an hour. Why did you let me sleep so long?"

"I was asleep too. You wore me out," Seven said, trying out an expression she had heard Del use several times in the last few weeks.

Del grinned down at Seven. "Have I told you recently how much I love you?"

"Not for four hours, twenty six minutes and forty three seconds," Seven informed her.

It still managed to surprise Del when Seven took a question so literally. She started to explain then caught the mischievous sparkle in Seven's eyes. Del laughed when she realized she had fallen for it. This was a new development, Seven was learning to tease. Del thought her heart would burst with how much she loved this incredible woman.

"Come on, you. Let's get cleaned up and dinner ready before our guests arrive." Del climbed out of bed and headed for the ensuite. She stopped when Seven called her name.

Seven rose up onto her knees letting the sheet drop to the bed. "We could shower together and conserve resources."

Del bit her lip, her eyes going to Seven's body. She had introduced Seven to the pleasures of showering together and felt her libido rise once again, as she remembered the last time they shared a shower. It took every ounce of willpower she had to turn down Seven's enticing offer. "No, we can't, or we'll still be naked when Janice and Carrie arrive."

"Resistance is futile," Seven insisted, smiling self-assuredly as she strode confidently toward Del. With Del's help, Seven had truly come into her own, her self esteem finally reasserting itself. She knew for a fact that Del would not reject her advances.

Del groaned, knowing just how true that was when it came to Seven; she couldn't resist her. She followed Seven docilely into the ensuite.

Del was just pulling on her clothes when the door chime sounded. Things had gone exactly as she expected when they entered the ensuite together. Not that she was really complaining, Seven for all her innocence was turning out to be the most amazing lover she had ever had. She mock growled at Seven who was fastening the clasp of her biosuit. Seven actually grinned before striding out of the bedroom to answer the door.

She had been a bit disappointed to learn that Seven would not be able to discard her biosuit when off duty. She was able to be without it while she slept and for several hours at a time during the day but for the most part required the suit and it's built in support system for her implants.

Del quickly finished dressing and headed out to greet their guests. As soon as she stepped into the room she knew something momentous had occurred. Janice and Carrie were radiating happiness verging on euphoria. Though even without her empathic abilities she would have known something was up. Both women were practically vibrating with excitement. Seven was regarding the two women curiously so even she had noticed.

Del smiled her thanks at Seven when she noted she had already provided drinks for their guests and her favorite drink was sitting on the coffee table waiting for her. Now that they were entertaining, Del missed the larger living area of their quarters. Maybe it was time to contact Captain Janeway about authorizing maintenance to return the cabin to its original configuration. Seven had never slept in the second bedroom and if Del had her way, never would.

"So, Ladies…what's new?" Del asked casually.

Janice and Carrie both blushed realizing how transparent they were obviously being. They looked at each other waiting for the other to speak.

"Well…" Del drawled in amusement.

"We're going to get married!" Carrie squealed excitedly.

Del hugged both women. "Congratulations. When did this happen?"

"Last night, it was our six month anniversary. I asked and she said yes," Janice said in a awe filled voice, as if she still couldn't quite believe it.

"We're really happy for you both." Del glanced at Seven and saw her slightly confused look. She wondered if Seven understood the significance of what Carrie had told them.

"Thanks, that means a lot to us," Janice said.

"Well, this calls for a celebration." Del made her way over to the replicator and ordered everyone a glass of sparkling cider to toast the happy couple.

They discussed wedding plans over a celebratory dinner. Janice and Carrie like Del were both from Earth. They had decided on a fairly traditional wedding. Even though the women were from different areas of North America, the rituals were almost identical. They planned to approach the Captain as soon as possible and ask her to perform the ceremony.

Seven had been very quiet all evening. Del tried to draw her into the conversation but quickly realized that for the most part she had no idea about the things they were discussing. Carrie had asked Seven's opinion several times but she had just shrugged in answer.

It was late when Del and Seven escorted their guests to the door. Del warmly congratulated both women again. Seven offered her congratulation as well, but it was obvious to Del at least, that she was merely following her example.

Del let out a huge yawn as soon as the door to their quarters slid shut. "Ready to call it a night?"

Seven nodded and headed toward the bedroom. They got cleaned up and changed in silence. Del was beginning to worry that something had upset Seven. She slipped into bed and waited for Seven to join her. As soon as Seven laid down Del scooted over to press against her. Del sighed in pleasure when Seven wrapped her arms around her and pulled her close. They lay in silence for a time.

Del could tell Seven was not asleep but didn't sense that she was upset. "What are you thinking about, Love?"

Seven did not respond at first. Del patiently waited her out. Finally Seven broke the silence. "What is the significance of being married?"

"That is a very complicated question, Seven. It means different things to different people."

"What does it mean to you?" Seven clarified.

"It means that morally, legally, emotionally, and physically, I would commit myself to that person for the rest of my life. It means that I would love her, and only her, 'til the day I die."

When Seven didn't comment Del continued. "Now, it can mean other things to other people. Being married in the culture I'm from denotes a monogamous relationship. As well as giving each person certain legal rights and protections. However, you can decide how long you would like the marriage contract to be. These days most people opt for two years, then can renew it at their option."

"I don't understand, you said a lifetime commitment. Why would someone choose to only be married for two years? Do they stop loving each other after that?"

"You asked me what it meant to me. I just wanted you to understand there were other options. I personally could never sign a limited contract, to me that's like stating up front that you're not totally committed to that person."

How do you know if you wish to be married to someone?"

Del sighed, wondering how to explain. "When you fall in love, sometimes things work and sometimes they don't. If and when you meet the right person and things do work out, it is just the natural progression of a relationship to want to make a lasting connection to that person.

Like Janice and Carrie: they have been lovers and living together for six months. They have decided that the other is the person they want to spend the rest of their life with. Though they both know that they love each other, and are committed to each other, they want to stand up before their friends and crewmates and declare their love for each other. It holds a significant meaning to them to proclaim themselves formally and legally as a couple for all to see.

Seven was silent seeming to digest everything Del had said. Del started when Seven pulled away and sat up. "Computer, lights, one half," she ordered.

Del blinked in the sudden illumination and sat up next to Seven. "What's wrong?"

Seven's eyes met Del's, her gaze filled with emotion. "You are the person I want to spend the rest of my life with."

Del felt her eyes fill with tears at Seven's heartfelt words. She knew without a doubt that she felt the same way about Seven. "I want to spend the rest of my life with you," Del assured Seven in an emotion choked voice.

"Marry me," Seven demanded with a touch of her former haughty tone in evidence.

Del laughed through her tears and threw her arms around Seven and hugged her tightly. Only Seven would make a marriage proposal sound more like a command. "Of course, I'll marry you, Love."

Seven pulled back and took Del's lips in a searing kiss pouring all the emotion she had for this incredible woman into the kiss. She had given her back her humanity that had been taken from her nineteen years ago by the Borg. Seven knew in her heart she would go through it all again, just to be here in Del's arms.

When the kiss finally broke, Del buried her face in Seven's neck, savoring the emotions rolling off of her. If she had never believed in fate before, she did now. She had been thrown half way across the galaxy and thought she had lost everything that she had ever known. Only to discover, what she had truly been missing, the other half of her soul.

The End

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