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What If
By Artemisrulz


Seven years, maybe a little more. Walls between us, miles between us….lovers, friends, circumstances, there was always something there that let us carry that little white lie in our hearts. Only, now do I realize as I look at you and you tell me what you have done so casually, what the fuck did you think I would say, good for you. Hope it all works out…or maybe I would yell at you and tell you what a total fucking hypocrite you are, how stupid you are to be doing what you're doing, like neither of us know the truth that lies behind your actions. Selfishness driven by pain, by heartbreak, but selfishness none the less. You tell me after two months, you waited two fucking months to tell me that your lover of so many years has left you, and you never saw it coming, yeah right. Well, hell I never liked him anyway, I think you're lots better off without him but why you're doing what you're doing… You are crazy. Having an affair with another ex-lover, one who is still in a relationship with the woman she left you for, sounds like a damned human soap opera. Wait, what was that…sounds like that pedestal I held you on for all these years, just crashed to the ground and smashed to a thousand pieces. Stinging me and biting me, tearing holes in my heart, oh well, what's a little more blood, another jagged wound. I'm not even sure why you keep telling me this story. We both know you're full of shit anyway. It's not like I can't see through all the false bravado to the real truth. This is me you're talking to you know? The tension between is so thick it chokes me. The confusion, the frustration, the doubt, the fear…more effective walls than any lover or friend ever built between us.

I saw the way you used to look at me in engineering when you thought I was totally focused on my work. I know why you really started all those arguments with me, why we always fought so much. I felt those feelings too. Do you really think I am so stupid, do you think I don't know. I also watched your heart break on the night when you finally realized that you had suddenly lost something incredibly precious that you hadn't even known you held in your hand, in your heart until it was suddenly gone. But you still let me marry him and I pretended I was happy about it while the whole time I was dying inside. Just one look, that's all it would have taken and I'd have left him standing at the alter. But I guess the Borg do feel fear huh?

What did you think I would do today, here now…in this time and place as you say these things to me. What the hell is the point anyway, just to add to my pain?

Back then on Voyager, I pretended I didn't see the loss in your face as you wished me joy and a happy marriage, the love in your eyes, the desire that grew ever stronger. I think Tom knew though, he always did though he never mentioned it to me. I did the wrong thing for all the right reasons. Honor, a promise of fidelity to a man I never really loved. A daughter who deserved to have a father.

Then we were finally home. Voyager made it back to Earth and I had one final chance as we said our goodbyes. I gritted my teeth, I looked at you and you looked at me and I wanted to scream, I wanted to rip him apart and tear you from his arms, that damn grinning buffoon, why him of all people, maybe you knew that you loving him would hurt me the most, huh? Oh, the look in your eyes, you knew…you knew what this was doing to me as you hugged him tight to your side. If I had said just one word, one word…that is all it would have took, this too I saw in your beautiful blue eyes. But I just shook Chakotay's hand and congratulated him on having the balls to take what I always wanted. Well, not outloud though I'm sure his hand was sore for days afterwards. Then I headed off with my husband and daughter to live the American dream even as half my heart went with you and the other half grew numb and cold and I died inside.

It is only with age and much heartache that I now understand the full irony of the situation. You were with someone who didn't deserve you, who I don't think you really loved, much the same as I. We'd both have been a lot better off all of these years if only I had been a bit less honorable and followed my heart, gotten right down to the truth of the matter rather than doing as always, what was the proper, the honorable thing to do.

So finally our annual Voyager Family reunion has drawn to a close and all our friends have gone. All night I have refused to look at you, to acknowledge the truth of what you really wanted. Why you really told me what you had done. I'm not your fucking savior. I've had enough of this game. So, I stayed on my side of the room and you stayed on yours and neither of us said anything else for a long while until everyone was gone. And oddly enough now that it is just the two of us I find I still can say nothing as there is suddenly not enough air in the room to breath and I let you get up and I let you walk away and I took the feelings in my heart, the knowledge of the truth I have always possessed and locked it away deep in my soul.

I think back to the past for the umpteenth time. When I stayed with my lover and you found another and they both took us for granted and used our inherent honesty and innocence, all the naiveté we still possessed despite our less than perfect lives and the pain of our pasts and we held our lovers between us like a shield and it kept us safe when we were together. Safe from a passion I told my self did not exist. I did not desire you and you did not desire me. I did not love you and you did not love me. Those were foolish and flighty thoughts indeed.

Then tell me now here in the present time why I can not touch you, why I can not look in your eyes. Tell me why we dance around each other afraid to even breath the same air. I do not want you, I do not desire you. I can not. There has been too much time and too much pain and the walls between us are now of our own making, built of our own fears. I lean towards you, we touch, you move away. You lean towards me, we touch, I move away. I feel your blue eyes on me, the heat of your body, the fear, the desire that comes and goes.

We are sitting on a powder keg praying someone will light the fuse, afraid it will explode, afraid it will not. The passion, the power of what lies between us is terrifying, mind numbing, soul shattering. It would likely destroy us beyond repair or perhaps, perhaps in might free us, break down all the barriers, let us truly feel, truly live, truly love for the first time in our lives. But we will never know will we. Oh god, how it hurts, how I ache, I burn…I quake with fear. The heat rising up out of my chest, Damn! Fucking bloody hell…I don't want to feel all this. I didn't think I would feel anything, nothing at all, it was always just an a sweet little dream that danced across my mind from time to time, a safe, silly little fantasy that could never come true for many reasons. Your lovers, my husband, all our fears, doubts and reasons.

Honor, fucking bloody honor…I tire of always doing what is right but with you it has become such a habit. God Damn, you! Why, why did you run to someone else when I was here and we were both finally free…oh, fuck it we both know why, because it was safe, because you can still hold onto your self-delusion and continue to live in the uncomplicated place you have made the reality of your life. You are human Annika, more human perhaps than I will ever be.

Coward! You are such a coward! Go ahead and hide behind your so called rationality, your lofty principles, your self-righteous, unholy borg doctrine, your fucking cool as ice reserve. Hah! You may fool some but you don't fool me.

You think I'm gonna just walk away...well what if…what if...I slammed your body against the wall, grabbed you by the back of the neck and covered your mouth with mine. What if I pressed my body into to you, so hard you can't breathe, my breasts crushing yours, chest heaving. I force my tongue into your mouth and kiss you until you can't breathe, until you moan helplessly and your body writhes against mine. I steal your very breath and make it mine, our hearts thundering together, beating in erratic syncopation. I can smell your desire, feel the heat, the passion dance along our skin. I grab your shirt and rip the buttons apart, my free hand running up your hip, over your ribs up to your breast where I squeeze until you whimper, begging me, begging me with every groan, every hitching sob in your breath to take you and truly set you free…but that will never happen will it…no matter how much we both know we want it. So much for the bravery of Klingon Warriors…so much for the futility of resistance.

We stand in the parking lot now. I look at you and you look at me as our friends hug us both and walk away. We are once again alone and finally I find the courage, what little I still possess to wrap you in my arms and hug you and you hug me back and everything is so clear for one small instance and then I quickly shut myself down as I nearly choke on all the truths that want to spill from my lips and say something inane, be careful…take care…Goodbye and then we both run…me back to my emptiness, all the pain no one else ever sees…all the uselessness and waste of what might of been and could be. Do I love you, I don't know…Do I desire you, Oh yes, oh bloody fucking hell, yes….What else but love could make two grown women feel such passion and such fear all in the space of a shared breath, a brushing of skin…the explosion just waiting to rip away all the facades and lay us both bare…down to the bone, no illusions, no walls…nothing but the distance we put between us now as we both flee for our lives. Cowards! Bloody fucking cowards, that's what we are and that about sums it all up. No Hirogens, no Vidiians, no Borg no Kazon….No arrogant fly boy and no boyishly handsome, second in command of the Starship Voyager….No the only thing to ever defeat the unbeatable, the courageous, the strong….was the threat of overwhelming passion and undeniable love….the fear of feeling too much and the possibility of the loss of that love….Nothing in the Delta Quadrant ever defeated us…..nothing but the knowledge of our love……..Damn! You!…..and Damn me too….guess we're both damned, huh?

So here I stand and watch you walk away when every atom in my body wants to run after you and kiss you until you finally understand what true perfection really is…it is you and I together…it is what we would be…could be…if we were as one. I turn and I go and I realize the greatest thing that ever happened to me was you…..

I close my eyes and try not to cry and I sob.."Oh, Kahless! I love you Seven…always have…always will. I'll never be anything but half alive without you.." Then I feel a hand on my shoulder and I turn around angry words on my lips for the unfortunate soul who might dare to comfort me, and take away my precious pain and there you are….blue eyes brimming with unshed tears and you say. "I know, I always knew…I felt the same." I want to kill you, I want to crush my body against yours and kiss you but all I can do is stare stupidly at you and say. "Well, why didn't you ever tell me you felt this way?" I refuse to give you any quarter, any points for being the one to finally grow a spine and speak the truth out loud. Stubborn to the end, that's me. You sigh and shake your head as you place your hands on my shoulders as mine stay balled in fists by my side. "Does it really matter, B'Elanna Torres? We were both equally foolish and haunted by the same fears then, but now…" You shake your head and then lean over and gently brush your lips against mine as I close my eyes and tangle a hand in your soft, blonde hair. In this moment we have finally found absolution, release, perfection and an absence of fear. We break the kiss and I take your hand in mine as rain softly begins to fall. Somehow this seems appropriate as the water washes away all the years and baptizes us with the hope and promise of a future that is full of possibilities. There is only one thing left for both of us to say. "I love you Seven." "I love you too B'Elanna." Then we turn and walk away, hand in hand and at last I know what it feels like to be complete. And what if…suddenly becomes what will be and I am no longer afraid.

The End

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