Quietly she watched from her station at the rear of the bridge. The hustle and bustle that surrounded the diminutive woman in the command chair was unfathomable. How could one so small command so many? What was it this individual possessed that induced 141 souls to follow her lead without question?
Was it her commanding aura, the fire contained in her blue gray gaze when defending what was hers? Or was it the compassion and concern she exhibited when speaking to each individual? A touch here, a comforting word there…
All she knew was she would follow the compact redhead to the ends of the universe and beyond. She would follow this woman who had taken her from everything she had ever known. And she would do so gladly.
The captain turned. Their eyes met and glances locked. The taller one felt her soul being pulled from her being, shown to this one that owned her heart. Her breath caught in her chest. Abruptly, she turned away feeling a flood of color rush to her face.
Janeway finally relented and turned her curious gaze back to the view screen. Her thoughts were in chaos as her eyes were fixed on the field of stars whizzing by at warp speed. Normally she enjoyed the sight of the stars. Now, she barely noticed them.
Something in Seven’s eyes had stirred a hot, sharp feeling in the pit of her stomach. Realizing her desire for what it was, Janeway knew she couldn’t remain on the bridge.
"Chakotay, I’ll be in my ready room," she stated, suddenly rising from her chair and striding across the command center.
"Understood," he squeaked in surprise.
Janeway strode to the replicator without pause, keying in a request for the piping hot liquid she craved. She raised the coffee to her lips and took a large gulp of the hot beverage. Kathryn forced herself to swallow as tears stung her eyes.
She knew she was trying to punish herself for her inappropriate thoughts about the tall ex-Borg. Surely Seven had known about the intense attraction that had shot through Janeway’s body and it had embarrassed her. Why else would she have turned away like that?
Kathryn slumped onto the couch on the upper level of the ready room. She placed the coffee cup on the glass table and rested her face in her hands. I have to get these feelings under control, she thought desperately. Every time I see her, every time I talk to her, I have to concentrate to keep my eyes on her face!
Her eyes wanted to drift over the curvaceous form covered by the bio-suit that left little to the imagination. She wanted the tactile sensation of the full lips covering her own.
"This is ridiculous," Kathryn said, feeling a rush of moist heat gather between her legs. "I’m the Captain of a Starship, she’s a member of my crew, I have to get these feelings under control."
Resolutely, Janeway pushed herself to her feet. She carried the now cold cup of coffee to the replicator and recycled it. Then she forced herself to sit at the desk to go over the departmental reports awaiting her inspection.
Still she couldn’t focus. In her mind she saw full pink lips parting, the glistening of a tongue as words formed. Ice blue eyes stared into blue-gray ones. She imagined a hand of silver reaching for her, and yearned for the skin-warmed touch of metal against her cheek. Nipples hardened beneath the rough fabric of the Starfleet red and black. Breathing came in short bursts as eyes closed. She indulged herself in the fantasy. Allowing her mind to remove the skin-tight cat suit.
Would there be scattered implants on that perfect pale body? Would they be small and starburst shaped like the one on her cheek or would they be more intrusive? Kathryn didn’t care, she knew they would be perfection.
She heard the voice again and opened her eyes to see the concerned face of her first officer. She was mortified to realize in another moment or two he would have caught her with her hand in her lap.
"Are you all right? I became concerned when you didn’t answer the chime." Chakotay’s tribal tattoo wrinkled over his left brow in a frown when she didn’t answer. "You look flushed, should I call the Doctor?"
"No!" she finally croaked. "No, I’m all right. What is it you wanted?" she asked in an attempt to change the subject.
The Commander allowed the tactic knowing full well what was intended. He lowered his bear-like frame into the chair beside the desk trying to decide on the best approach. He decided direct was the best way. "I just wanted to check on you, Kathryn."
Janeway signed inwardly. The use of her first name indicated Chakotay was trying out his skills as self-appointed ship’s councilor.
"I told you, I’m fine," she began in a warning voice.
"The way you just ran off the bridge?"
He held up his hands in mock surrender as she gave him a level ten ‘look’.
"I’m just trying to help. I am your friend, you know."
Kathryn relented slightly. "Yes, you are," she admitted.
Feeling encouraged he said, "You were looking at Seven, and then suddenly you were leaving. Has she done something?"
The rush of blood to her face was so intense her eyes watered in sympathy.
"Kathryn?" he asked in sudden worry.
The blood receded enough for her to finally take a breath and she looked up at him gaugingly. He was her friend. If she couldn’t confide in him, then who? "Swear you won’t tell a soul," she ordered warningly.
Chakotay chuckled, realizing she was all right but extremely embarrassed about something. "You have my word. What is it?"
"It’s Seven," she said simply.
"She’s done something."
"She’s done nothing."
Now he was confused. Why the embarrassment, if the younger woman hadn’t done anything?
Seeing his look of confusion, Kathryn attempted to explain. "I’m distracted around her lately. When I look at her, I find myself looking at her."
Shaking his head slightly he said, "Is that all? I don’t think there’s a person on this ship, male or female, that doesn’t look at her. She’s gorgeous. Give yourself a break, Kathryn. You’re just showing you have feelings like the rest of us."
"You don’t understand," she stated emphatically. "It’s more, I can’t dream without her being there. I cant’ work…she’s there when I close my eyes. I even…"
He waited as she searched for the words.
"I even watch her while she regenerates."
"You love her," he stated with certainty.
"I can’t! I’m the captain. It’s inappropriate."
Chakotay knew he had to be careful, but he had to make her understand.
"Says who? We’re a long way from the Federation. Seven is not Starfleet, and unless you plan on being alone the rest of your life, why isn’t it appropriate?"
Kathryn hung on every word he said. She wanted to believe what he was saying It would be so easy, but there was one thing he hadn’t considered. And no matter what she believed, it all boiled down to one thing…
"She doesn’t feel the same way."
It was said in such a small voice. The sound of misery and loneliness coated the words. The look of desolation in the more gray than blue eyes wrung his compassionate heart. Gently, he placed his hands over here where they rested on the desk. "You don’t know that, Kathryn. You won’t know unless you try."
Without another word he left her to her own thoughts.
When the captain all but ran from the bridge, Seven realized she had made an error. She should have been more subtle. The captain had been more approachable lately, and the younger woman had assumed she was ready to act on their feelings. Seven had been so sure Janeway felt the same. Now she wasn’t sure.
The tall blonde quietly left the bridge to continue her duties elsewhere. Perhaps Lieutenant Torres could use assistance in engineering.
B’Elanna was surprised the Borg was actually asking for permission to help out. And she was just swamped enough to be glad for the help. "Actually, I need some repairs done on one of the plasma conduits in Jeffries tube 29 beta."
Wordlessly, Seven accepted the padd containing the specs and retrieved a small tool kit. She accessed the maintenance hatch from main engineering and crawled down the narrow tube. The repairs were extensive due to a recent explosion from a matter/anti-matter induction coil.
This was just what the young woman needed to keep her occupied for a few hours. Maybe she could keep her mind off a certain dynamic redhead with flashing eyes.
After debating the issue with herself, Janeway decided Chakotay was right. She didn’t want to be alone the rest of her life. She wanted Seven and needed to know how the other woman felt. Maybe she should just talk with her…kind of feel her out. Yes, they shared a bond, but was that bond only friendship as far as the blonde was concerned?
Kathryn queried the computer and was surprised to discover the former drone’s location to be in a Jeffries tube in engineering.
Quickly, she left her inner sanctuary, informed the commander he had the bridge and entered the turbo-lift.
"Deck eleven," she stated calmly.
B’Elanna looked up and visibly started when the captain entered engineering. She hadn’t been expecting an inspection. "Captain! Uh…I didn’t know you were inspecting today. Repairs are proceeding…."
"Relax, lieutenant. It’s not an inspection. I was looking for Seven."
What’s she done now, B’Elanna wondered with an internal smirk.
"In the Jeffries tube…" she indicated with a relieved grin.
Janeway entered the maintenance tube and carefully pulled the hatch firmly closed. It wouldn’t do for the whole engineering crew to hear their discussion. Especially if it went the way she hoped it would.
Kathryn turned to crawl down the tube and stopped as the breath caught in her lungs.
Seven was using a spanner to effect repairs and had yet to notice Janeway’s presence. Kathryn took advantage and drank in the sight of the precious form. Seven was sitting with her knees bent ‘Indian style’. She was hunched over to keep her head from striking the top of the tube.
Kathryn watched the play of fine muscles as the young woman worked. She was caught off guard when Seven unexpectedly turned her head to meet her gaze.
"Captain, are you in need of assistance?" Seven inquired politely.
"Uh, no. I just thought we could talk."
"In a Jeffries tube? Very well…what is it you wish to discuss?"
Kathryn chuckled to herself at the unlikely venue, but forced herself to continue. She crawled to where Seven was seated and eased down beside her. The scent of Seven’s skin wafted gently to Kathryn’s nose, distracting her from what she had meant to say. She looked up and met an icy blue gaze and felt herself mesmerized.
Pale pink lips parted as words formed. The glistening of a tongue…. Kathryn felt the sharp fire of desire flare in her loins, again. A fluttering in the pit of her stomach... She jerked as she realized Seven was speaking.
"Captain," she said in a quiet voice, "are you all right?"
Seven’s enhanced senses detected the scent of the smaller woman’s arousal. It ignited a similar reaction in the inexperienced younger woman. Suddenly, her breathing was labored. She felt her nipples harden in instinctive response. But, she had promised herself she would go slowly. She didn’t want to frighten this woman.
"Uh, can I help you with anything?" Janeway offered needing to distract herself from the stunning vision sitting beside her.
Seven blinked slowly, trying to adjust to the unexpected response.
"You may help reconnect the circuitry. The tool kit is there," she said indicating the container.
"Great." Kathryn crouched on her feet and tried to step around the tall woman in the confined space. She didn’t quite make it. She felt the toe of her boot catch on the grating of the tube floor and felt herself falling.
The Borg caught her easily, lowering the captain to her lap. Janeway’s arms naturally settled around the narrow shoulders. She felt the firm mounds of Seven’s breasts press against her own meager offering.
Seven’s breath expelled from her lungs at the intensely pleasant sensation of the captain pressed against her body. Without volition, her arms encircled the older woman. Her right hand slid across a hip as her left snuggled against the small waist.
Kathryn looked up at an impossibly close, beautiful woman. Her eyes became heavy lidded with an overwhelming surge of desire. She froze, barely able to draw breath.
Nostrils flared scenting a new rush of desire, and Seven couldn’t break away from the commanding gaze.
"Seven," Kathryn began in a deeply husky voice, "we can’t…"
A blonde head dipped low, pale full lips brushed gently over a small mouth.
Kathryn grieved when the lips pulled away. She instinctively caught the blonde head between two small hands and pulled it back down. This time the lips did not brush. Mouths connected firmly. Kathryn stroked the pale lips with her tongue, seeking entrance. A groan escaped her as lips parted to allow the deepening kiss.
Seven held the smaller woman tightly. She had waited so long to taste her. Had thought of touching this body. Her hands began to map the curves lovingly. Fingers stroked the small breasts tentatively at first, then more surely when Kathryn responded with a moan and an arching of her back.
Seven felt the hard bump form under the uniform tunic. She slid her hand to the hem of the garment and pushed underneath seeking closer contact with the firm bud.
Kathryn tore her mouth away to bury her face against the smooth expanse of Seven’s neck. "Yesss," she hissed as warm fingers encircled then pinched her nipple.
"Kathryn…" the blonde groaned, feeling her own nipples harden against the fabric of her suit. "Please, I need….I…."
"Ssshh, Darling," Kathryn murmured reining kisses against her neck and earlobe. "Not here."
"Where?" Seven inquired urgently.
Kathryn’s mouth returned to Seven’s demandingly.
Seven groaned and gripped Kathryn’s waist tightly. She pulled her legs from beneath the smaller frame and stretched out beside her lover, pressing firmly against the length of her and forcing the other woman to lay down.
Janeway moaned when Seven’s thigh slipped between her legs, pressing firmly against her mound. She tilted her pelvis to press more firmly against the muscle, gasping when Seven began to rub up and down against her. With an effort, she drew back.
"Darling, not here," she repeated. "Anyone can come in."
She recognized the strength of Seven’s desire when she felt strong fingers slip under the waistband of her trousers.
"I want to make love to you," Seven said huskily as her fingers brushed past coarse damp curls.
Kathryn’s hips bucked when long fingers finally rubbed against her clitoris. "Umph…oh, yes."
Seven dipped into the moisture between the firm legs and drew it up to circle the hardening bud, pressing and circling softly at first, dipping repeatedly into the well of moisture. She increased the pressure as Kathryn’s respiration increased.
Kathryn felt the pressure starting in the pit of her stomach. She held on to Seven tightly and muffled her cries against the strong shoulder.
"Now…oh, Seven…now," she whispered harshly in explosive pants. Her back arched suddenly as the orgasm tore through her loins.
Seven continued rubbing the bundle of nerves, gentling as she felt the spasms in her lover’s body slowing. She nuzzled Kathryn gently, comforting the smaller woman as she regained her composure.
"What was it you wished to discuss with me?" Seven finally asked when Janeway had relaxed.
Kathryn pulled away slightly and chuckled. "I came to find out how you felt about me," she answered derisively. "I guess that was my answer."
"Kathryn," Seven said, kissing gently against the freckled cheeks, "you have always known how I feel about you. You just chose to finally recognize it."
"You’re right, my darling. But, I still think we should get out of this Jeffries tube before B’Elanna comes in to find out what happened to us. And…" she said huskily, feeling the Borg beginning to ride firmly against her thigh, "I think someone still needs attention."
Kathryn and Seven quickly collected themselves and exited the Jeffries tube. Seven placed the tool kit beside the engineering console and followed her lover to the captain’s quarters to continue where they left off.
B’Elanna was left wondering at the abrupt departure and wondered what kind of trouble Seven had gotten into now!