HOME SQUARED

By: tayryn

 

DISCLAIMER: Star Trek and its universe are owned by Paramount. I have just taken my friends out for a little joyride, and I do mean joyride! I promise to return them unharmed, albeit a lot happier.

WARNING: This story is rated, most definitely NC-17!!! No children allowed. You must be eighteen to read this. Should you choose to read it anyway, that is your choice. I take no responsibility.

DEDICATION: this story is dedicated to all those people who believe that no matter what the challenge, love will always find a way.

 Thank you for letting me ramble on, now please... read on and enjoy! :-)

 

HOME SQUARED

(** In this story Voyager has been in the Delta Quadrant for ten years)

 

"Captain Janeway to the bridge!"

The ready room doors parted and Kathryn Janeway strode out onto the bridge.

"What is it, Commander?" She asked as she moved to the center seat.

Chakotay looked over at her with an unreadable look on his face.

"Youíre never going to believe this." He said and paused. "Sensors have found what we believe to be a stable wormhole."

Chakotay saw the hope flash in Kathrynís eyes.

"Have sensors been able to determine where it leads?" She asked.

"Weíre working on it, Captain." Ensign Kim replied as he worked his console.

Fifteen minutes later, Harry lifted his head, a bewildered expression on his face.

"Captain!?" He said. "If sensors are correct, this wormhole leads... home."

"Home!?!" Piped up Lieutenant Paris. "As in the Alpha Quadrant?"

Harry nodded.

Janeway glanced at Chakotay as she stood and made her way over to Harryís console.

A smile broke out on her face and tears sprang to her eyes.

"Gentlemen," she said, her voice suddenly filled with emotion. "I believe we may have found our way home."

"I take it the wormholeís stable?" Chakotay asked.

Kathryn nodded.

"It appears so."

"Then what are we waiting for?" tom said. "Letís get going."

"Hold on, Tom." Janeway said as she waked back to her chair. "I want to run some more scans on it. We donít want to get halfway through and have it collapse on us."

"A wise precaution, Captain." Said Tuvok.

Kathryn grinned.

"Thank you, Tuvok." She paused. "Harry. Go down to astrometrics and work with Seven on this. Use anything, sensors, probes... just find out if this thingís stable."

"Aye, Captain." Harry said happily as he left the bridge.

"Captain." Chakotay said leaning towards her. "Maybe you should make an announcement to the whole ship. This wonít take long to get around."

"Good idea." She said smiling, tabbing a control on her console.

"Attention all hands! This is the Captain. Twenty minutes ago, sensors found what we believe to be a stable wormhole, which we have determined, leads to the Alpha Quadrant. We are currently running further scans to verify its stability and if all goes well, it wonít be long until weíre home in the Alpha Quadrant. Just please everyone, donít get your hopes up." She paused and looked over at Chakotay, who nodded at her. "I will let you know more as soon as we do. Janeway out."

"That should help a little." Chakotay said, his voice quiet.

Kathryn looked over at him. There was something in his voice.

"Heís probably just trying to keep from getting his hopes up too high." She thought. "And yet I can sense something else."

She leaned towards him and touched his arm.

"Chakotay." She said softly. "Are you all right?"

He looked at her and flashed her a quick smile.

"Iím fine." He said. "Just trying not to get my hopes up."

She nodded.

"Is that all?"

"Yes." He replied.

She was just about to say something else, when she interrupted by a page form Ensign Kim.

"Ensign Kim to Bridge."

"Bridge here. Go ahead Harry." Janeway said.

"Captain, can you come down to the astrometrics lab? Seven and I have something to show you."

"Very well, Harry. Iím on my way. Janeway out."

"Commander, would you join me." Janeway said as she stood and headed for the turbolift. Chakotay followed. "Tuvok, the bridge is yours."

As the lift doors shut, Janeway called out their destination. The lift began to move.

Kathryn looked up at her First Officer.

"Whatís bothering you, Chakotay?"

He looked down at her.

"Nothing." He replied.

Kathryn just looked at him.

"Bull."

"What do you mean Ďbullí?"

"I know you, Chakotay. And I know somethingís bothering you." She said and then put her hand on his arm. "What is it?"

He gazed at her for a moment.

"Nothing." He said as he shrugged. "I just didnít sleep well last night. Thatís all."

Kathryn gave him a scrutinizing look.

"Well I still donít believe you, but I wonít push."

"Since when?" He commented with a hint of a smile.

Her reply was to slap him playfully on the arm.

He chuckled. He so enjoyed teasing her.

The lift came to a stop and they exited it and headed for Astrometrics.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"So you see, Captain," Seven was saying. "Scans from the probe show that the wormhole is indeed stable."

A huge smile broke out on Kathrynís face and she clapped her hands together.

"However," Seven continued. "We will have to modify the shields to protect us from the fierce gravimetric currents inside the wormhole."

"How long?"

"Six hours." Harry answered.

"Very well." Janeway said. "I want both of you to report to Engineering and assist BíElanna in modifying the shields."

"Yes, captain." The said in unison and then both turned and left.

"I still find it hard to believe those two never got together." Kathryn said, looking after them. "Iíve always thought for sure they would. Didnít you?"

She waited for Chakotay to respond. When he didnít say anything, she turned to look at him and saw him staring at a console with a blank look on his face.

"Chakotay?" She said. "Chakotay?"

She waited. Still no answer. She moved over to him, placing one hand on his shoulder and the other on his arm, leaning against him.

"Chakotay." She said softly against his shoulder.

He turned to look at her.

"Chakotay. What is it? Whatís troubling you?" She asked quietly. "You donít look happy about this."

He shrugged his shoulders.

"I am happy about this."

"You sure donít look it."

"Kathryn, look, itís nothing. Iím just tired."

Kathryn turned and moved closer to him and moved her hand to his cheek and raised his face to look at her.

What she saw in his eyes cut at her heart. She could see his joy at finally going home, but there was also a hollowness and another look she couldnít quite place.

Her hand caressed his cheek. His eyes widened slightly and he brought his hand up to cover hers.

"Donít, Kathryn." He said as he pulled her hand away.

"Chakotay?"

"Donít, not after all these years. I canít...," he said as he turned away from her and moved to walk away.

Kathryn put her hands on his shoulders, stopping him. She quickly moved around so that she was facing him.

"I donít understand." She said. "Donít what?"

He brought his hand up and caressed her cheek. She shivered as his fingers moved lightly over her skin.

"You are so beautiful, Kathryn." He said, his voice just above a whisper. "So beautiful."

Kathryn felt herself blush under his touch.

"Chakotay." She whispered.

Suddenly his hand dropped to his side.

"We should get back to the bridge." He said.

Kathryn shook her head slightly.

"Chakotay?"

He shook his head.

"Iím sorry." He said. "Letís just go to the bridge. The crewís going to be anxious about what Harry and Seven found out."

Kathryn nodded.

"Youíre right. We should get back." She gave him a look. "Chakotay?"

"Letís get going. The sooner we get to the bridge, the sooner we can fill everyone in."

With that he turned and left the lab. Kathryn shook her head and followed her First Officer.

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Steady as she goes, Mr. Paris." Janeway said as the ship shook a little with each gravimetric wave that hit the ship.

"Aye, Captain." Paris said. He tabbed a few controls. "Another wave coming up. Get ready."

"How long until weíre through?" Janeway asked.

"Another fifteen minutes, Captain." Kim responded.

Kathryn looked over at Chakotay and saw that his eyes were closed.

"He usually watches this sort of thing with rapt attention." She thought. "What is bothering him? Weíre going home, he should be happy."

Her mind drifted back to that moment in Astrometrics six hours ago. She could have sworn that he was going to kiss her.

The last time he had touched her face like that, they had ended up locked in a heated embrace and had come very close to making love.

A smile tugged at the corner of her lips as she thought back to that night five years ago.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Kathryn and Chakotay walked down the corridor towards her quarters, laughing.

"These talent nights are getting quite interesting." Chakotay commented.

Kathryn laughed as Chakotay looked down at his now multi-colored clothes.

"Next time I get to paint your clothes." He said, laughter in his voice.

When they reached her door, she invited him in for a cup of tea.

"You know, Chakotay." Kathryn said between sips. "You really should do something for talent night."

He shook his head.

"I told you before. Not until you reprise your dying swan routine."

"And I told you, not until you do something." She paused and then put her cup down. "Iíve got it!" She said excitedly, clapping her hands. "Oh itís perfect."

"Whatís perfect?" He asked.

She stood up and began to pace.

"Yes. Yes, it could work. And it might actually be fun."

"Oh oh! I donít know if I like the sound of that."

Kathryn just flashed him a brilliant smile as she moved behind the chair he was in.

"Do you know how to dance Chakotay?" She asked leaning in from behind him.

"Yes." He answered hesitantly. "Why?"

"Because thatís what you, or rather we could do for the next talent night." She said as she moved out from behind him and twirled around. "Think about it, Chakotay. We could do a dance routine and this way you wouldnít have to be up there by yourself."

Chakotay thought about it.

"What kind of dance routine? Ballet? Jazz? Ballroom?" He paused. "Latino? There are all kinds of dance routines we could do."

"Does that mean youíll do it?" She asked.

Chakotay stood up, bowed and extended his hand to her.

She took it and allowed him to pull her into his embrace as they began to dance.

"Uh, Chakotay. Thereís no music." She said laughing.

"Who needs music?" He said with mock seriousness. "Besides, we should do something unique. Donít you agree?"

"Absolutely. Like what?" She asked as he twirled her around.

"I have no idea, but it should be something interesting." He said as he tried to think of the sexiest dance he knew. "Donít you agree?"

Kathryn caught the twinkle in his eye and knew exactly what he was thinking and decided to have some fun with him.

"Yes. I agree. It should be something interesting. Why donít we try everything and pick one." She said smiling.

"Well, no time like the present." He said as he pulled her tight against him. "Letís tango!"

With that he began to lead her all over the room, Kathryn following his lead with ease.

Suddenly Kathryn tripped and Chakotay stopped her from falling. He looked down at her and they both began laughing.

Suddenly, he brought his hand up and caressed her cheek.

Kathryn shivered as he moved his fingers slowly over her skin.

His thumb moved gently over her lips.

"You are so beautiful, Kathryn." He said softly. "So beautiful."

Kathryn brought her hand up and covered his.

"Chakotay." She whispered.

Chakotay moved his fingers under her chin and tilted her face up. Slowly he lowered his lips to hers.

He softly traced the outline of her lips with his own, tasting a hint of the herbal tea sheíd been drinking earlier, finding that it tasted better on her lips.

Kathryn opened her mouth to him, bringing his tongue into her mouth.

The kiss was slow and gentle as their tongues moved waltzed around each other.

Chakotayís hands moved up and entangled in Kathrynís hair, holding her lips against his as their kiss deepened.

Kathryn moaned softly as his hands began to move again slowly down her body, touching her everywhere. Her hands moved up over his muscled chest to entwine around his neck.

Suddenly she became aware that they were moving. She then felt Chakotay lower their bodies onto the couch, while still kissing her.

Chakotay left her lips to fire a trail of kisses down her throat, causing her to moan. His hands moved down the sides of her body, caressing her through her clothes.

Kathrynís hands moved over his back, pulling on his shirt, trying to free it from his jeans.

His hands moved to her thighs, which were bare as the skirt she was wearing, had fallen back. Kathryn moaned as his hand moved behind her knee and pulled her leg up, pressing himself closer to her.

Kathryn managed to finally pull his shirt from his jeans and moved her hands under it, running her fingers over his hot skin.

Chakotayís fingers quickly and deftly unbuttoned her blouse, following the opening with his lips. When her blouse fell open, Chakotay smiled at the fact that she was bra-less.

He lowered his lips and placed a kiss in the valley between her breasts and heard her sigh.

He brought his left hand up and cupped her left breast, feeling her nipple harden immediately under his touch and moved his mouth to her right breast, claiming her nipple between his lips.

Kathryn moaned and arched into him, her hands flying to his head, holding him to her.

Chakotay smiled against her breast and continued suckling her, causing her to moan and sigh at the same time.

Somehow Kathryn managed to remove his shirt and she ran her hands lightly along his sides.

Chakotay released her breast and moved back up to claim her mouth.

They kissed each other passionately; their tongues entwining like their bodies wanted to be.

Just as Kathrynís hands moved between their bodies to undo his jeans, the commline sounded, followed by Ensign Kimís voice.

"Captain." A pause. "Captain?"

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Captain?"

Janeway snapped out of her memories and turned to look at Harry.

"Yes, Ensign?"

"We should be clear of the wormhole in three minutes."

"Thank you, Harry." She said.

She glanced at Chakotay again and noticed that his eyes were now open. He looked over at her and gave her, in her opinion, a weak smile.

"Oh, Chakotay." She thought. "Can it be that youíre not at all happy about this?"

She looked around the bridge. Everyone, even Tuvok, was excited about finally going home.

Everyone but Chakotay.

She looked back at him. He was staring at the viewscreen, a forced smile on his face.

Images of the two of them from that night five years ago flashed through her mind again.

That was the only time in the ten years theyíd been out there that theyíd come that close to making love.

True, their friendship had deepened. She found herself confiding things to him that she wouldnít tell another soul. Occasionally, theyíd hold hands or heíd give her a kiss on the cheek, but that was it.

Whether it was her decision or his, she couldnít say. But that night became a fond but unspoken memory. Neither one of them bringing it up again.

"So why am I thinking about it now?" She asked herself. She continued her internal questioning. "Chakotay and I are friends. Very good friends. So why is it that I can still taste his lips and feel his hands caressing my body?"

She sneaked one more glance at him.

"Do you ever think about that night, Chakotay?" She wondered.

Just then she felt the ship lurch. She looked up at the viewscreen in time to see the end of the wormhole open up into clear space.

"Weíre through!" Exclaimed Tom.

"Harry, how long will it take us to reach Earth? Maximum speed?" She asked.

Harry checked his console then looked up at her, almost dejectedly.

"Three weeks." He said.

"Buck up, Harry. After the ten years it took to get here, three weeks will seem like nothing." She said. "Tom, set course for earth. Maximum warp."

"Yes, maíam." He said, tabbing his controls. "Course set. Maximum warp."

"Engage."

The ship jumped into warp.

Janeway stood.

"Iíll be in my ready room, Commander, putting the finishing touches on the reports. The bridge is yours."

With that she turned and entered her office.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

**three days later**

"Captain Janeway to the bridge."

A moment later, the ready room doors parted and Kathryn stepped through them.

"Weíre being hailed by a Federation Ship. One our sensors donít recognize." Chakotay told her.

"On screen." She said as she moved to the center of the bridge.

The viewscreenís picture changed to show the oncoming ship.

Tom gave a low whistle.

"Wow! Thatís an impressive ship."

"Slow us down, Tom, and bring her to a stop."

"Aye, Captain."

Voyager slowed and then stopped.

"Weíre being hailed again, Captain." Tuvok said.

"Open a channel." Janeway said.

The viewscreen changed again, this time showing the bridge of the other ship.

"Welcome home, Kathryn." Said a familiar, deep, masculine voice.

Kathryn grinned.

"Thank you, Jean-Luc. Itís good to be home."

"The Artinis Array picked up your ship as you emerged from the wormhole." He paused. "As soon as Starfleet was notified, we were ordered to escort you home."

"Well then," Kathryn said. "Escort away. My crew is anxious to get home."

"Iím sure they are." Picard said. "Weíll proceed at Warp seven." Picard held his hand up as Kathryn went to speak. "I know. Itíll add an extra two days, but Starfleet wants to prepare a proper welcome for you."

Kathryn nodded understandingly.

"So, while weíre escorting you home. How would you and your crew like to join us for dinner at eighteen hundred hours? Informal of course."

Kathryn smiled.

"That would be wonderful. And then you can show me around that impressive ship of yours."

"I would be honored." He smiled. "Iíll see you at eighteen hundred hours."

The screenís view changed back to that of the Enterprise.

"Mr. Paris, you heard the man. Warp seven. Keep us along side of the Enterprise."

"Aye, Captain."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Four hours later, Captain Janeway and her senior staff beamed over to the Enterprise.

"Welcome aboard the Enterprise E." Picard said smiling.

Kathryn walked down off the transporter pad. She stopped in front of Picard and turned towards her crew.

"Jean-Luc, allow me to introduce my senior staff." She said and then made the introductions. "And this is Mr. Neelix. Our cook, morale officer and ambassador."

"A pleasure to meet you, Captain Picard." Neelix said shaking Picardís hand enthusiastically.

"Likewise, Mr. Neelix." Picard said. "Now, if youíll all follow me, Iíll take you to Ten-Forward."

As he led them through the ship, Kathryn turned to Jean-Luc.

"Is Dr. Crusher still with you?" She asked.

"Beverly?" Picard asked. "Yes. Sheís still on the Enterprise. You know each other?"

Kathryn nodded.

"Weíre distant cousins. She used to spend summers at my house."

"Then that explains why sheís so excited." Picard said as they turned a corner. "Ah, here we are."

The doors parted and Picard led the Voyage crew into Ten-Forward and over to a group of people in the center of the room.

"If youíll permit me." Picard said. "Iíll make the introductions."

Kathryn nodded and Picard proceeded to introduce his senior staff. When he came to Beverly, he moved closer and wrapped his arm around her waist.

"And this is our Chief Medical Officer, Doctor Beverly Picard.My beautiful wife."

Beverly blushed slightly and patted his hand.

"Jean-Luc."

She then opened her arms to Kathryn.

The two women embraced and moved off to one side of the room to catch up.

Chakotay watched Kathryn move across the room and sit with Beverly. He sighed and walked across the room in the opposite direction.

He wasnít seated for more than five minutes when, Commander Riker approached him.

"Commander Chakotay, mind if I join you?" He asked.

Chakotay gestured to the empty chair.

"By all means, Commander Riker. And please, call me Chakotay."

"Will." Riker said, gesturing to himself as he sat down. "Happy to be home?"

Chakotay nodded.

"Yes."

"You donít sound too happy."

"Itís been a shock." Chakotay said. "We didnít expect to get back home this soon. We hoped, but..."

"I understand." Riker said. "So whatís it like serving under Captain Janeway?"

Wonderful. Exasperating. Heaven. Hell.

This and more went through Chakotayís mind.

"Itís all right." He answered. "Sheís a good captain. And I guess if I had to do it all over again, Iíd prefer to have Kathryn as my commanding officer."

"Kathryn?" Riker said, his eyebrows shooting up. "You two close?"

"You could say that." Chakotay said. "After spending ten years together out there, weíve become the best of friends."

"Oh." Riker said. He glanced around the room and then leaned in. "Did you meet any interesting women out there?"

Chakotay had to laugh at that, which he did and then went on to describe the different aliens theyíd encountered.

From across the room, Kathryn looked up from her conversation with Beverly.

"Kath, what is it?" Beverly asked.

Kathryn looked at Beverly.

"Itís been a while since Iíve heard Chakotay laugh."

She didnít count the other day in the turbolift.

Beverly glanced over at the two commanders.

"Heís a very handsome man." Beverly remarked.

"Yes he is." Kathryn said quietly.

"Do I detect a note of regret in your voice, Kathryn?"

Kathryn smiled.

"Maybe."

"About something that happened?" Beverly prompted.

Kathryn shook her head.

"Something that didnít happen. Something that almost happened. Something that should have." She paused. "I donít know anymore. All I know is that since we discovered that wormhole, Chakotay hasnít been himself."

"Worries you, doesnít it?"

"Yes. Chakotay is usually so very laid back. Almost happy go lucky."

"And he hasnít been."

"No."

"Ah, Kath, heís probably just adjusting to the fact that heís home. Give him time. Heíll be back to normal before you know it."

Kathryn looked over at her first officer.

"I hope youíre right, Beverly. I truly hope youíre right."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

As Janeway had predicted, the next three weeks passed quickly for the Voyager crew and before they knew it, they were orbiting Earth.

Kathryn had tears in her eyes as she gazed at the viewscreen.

"Never thought Iíd see it again." She spoke softly so only Chakotay could hear her. "But donít tell the crew that."

Chakotay smiled softly.

"I know and your secrets safe with me."

Kathryn looked over at him, a soft smile on her lips and in her eyes. She looked deep into his eyes and despite the smile on his face, she saw the same hollow, almost empty look sheíd seen in his eyes that day in astrometrics.

She was about to say something to him when Ensign Kim informed her that Starfleet Command was hailing them.

"On screen, Harry."

Moments later, the viewscreen changed from Earth to the smiling face of an admiral.

"Welcome home, Captain Janeway. Both to you and your crew." He said. "My name is Admiral Donald Hogestyn."

Janeway beamed.

"Thank you, Admiral Hogestyn. Itís good to be home."

"Well as Captain Picard no doubt informed you, weíve prepared a homecoming for you. Unfortunately, we have a few things to take care of first."

"Understood."

"Why donít you put Voyager to starbase and beam down with your crew."

"Yes, Sir."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Twenty minutes later, Janeway and her entire crew beamed down to Starfleet headquarters.

They were led to the council chambers where Janeway proceeded to plead her case, quite passionately, for the Maquis members of her crew.

When she finished, she turned and looked at Chakotay, who was, as he had been for ten years, by her side. He smiled at her and she saw his gratitude and respect in his eyes. She smiled back and turned her attention back to the panel of admirals before her.

After a few minutes of talking amongst themselves, they regarded the Voyager crew.

"Captain Janeway." Admiral Hogestyn began. "Once again I want to extend my delight that you and your crew have made it home." He paused. "Now as to the former Maquis members of your crew, it was decided five years ago, when your doctor made contact with us, that all charges against your Maquis crew would be dropped."

A loud whoop went up from the crew. Janeway looked back at them to quiet them.

The admiral continued.

"It has been decided that Voyager will undergo a refit and be returned to duty with you, Captain Janeway, in command." He paused. "Weíd also like the Maquis members of your crew to consider remaining in Starfleet and on Voyager."

There was a slight murmur from the crew and then the admiral continued.

"You have until the refit is complete to make your decision." He paused and then smiled. "That also means that you are all on extended shoreleave."

"Thank you, Admiral." Janeway said.

Admiral Hogestyn nodded.

"And now that that business has been attended to, letís move on to your homecoming celebration." He said. "There will be a ball tonight in your honour."

"A ball?"

"Yes, a ball. All of the Federation wants to welcome you home. And this seemed the easiest way to do that. The ball is slated to begin at twenty hundred hours." He paused. "That is all. You are all free to go."

As the crew filed out of the chamber chattering amongst themselves, Chakotay remained behind.

He approached the table of Admirals.

"Admiral Hogestyn, may I speak with you?"

"Of course, Commander. Letís walk over to my office."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Kathryn stood in front of the mirror, putting the finishing touches on her makeup.

"You look beautiful, Kath."

Kathryn whirled around to smile at her sister.

"Do I really look okay?"

"Okay?! Kath, you look gorgeous!" Phoebe said.

Kathryn turned back to the mirror and took in her appearance.

Her hair had been swept up high on her head with just a few wisps framing her face. She wore a floor length emerald green dress that had a slit up the side to her thigh. It was spaghetti strapped and dipped low in the front. The back hung loose, rippling to the small of her back.

A pair of simple emerald earrings and a gold chain holding a small charm, given to her by Chakotay for her forty-ninth birthday four years ago, was the only jewelry she wore.

"Heís a very lucky man." Phoebe said.

Kathryn spun around to look at her sister.

"What are you talking about?" Kathryn asked.

"Come on, Kathryn. Ever since you got home all youíve been able to talk about is him. He did this. He was so cute doing this. He really pissed me off when he did this." She paused and then continued. "Not to mention how nervous youíre getting."

"Iím not nervous." Kathryn said. "And I think youíre exaggerating. I just want to look nice. Itís been a while since Iíve been able to really dress up."

"Yes, you are nervous and Iím not exaggerating." Phoebe said.

"Yes, you are."

"Then why are you fidgeting with your necklace?"

Kathrynís hand dropped.

"Okay. Maybe I am a little nervous."

Phoebeís eyes widened a little.

"I donít ever remember you acting like this. Even when you were dating Mark." She stopped, her hand flying to her mouth. "Oh my God! Kathryn, are you in love with him?"

"No!" Kathryn said. "Chakotay and I are just friends."

That night from five years ago flashed through her mind. She unconsciously licked her lips.

She was brought out of her memory by her sisterís hand on her shoulder.

"Kath?"

"Weíre just friends, Phoebe."

Phoebe smiled. She didnít believe her sister.

From everything sheíd heard and seen in the hours her sister had been back, Phoebe could tell, that her sister was in love. Whether she admitted it or not.

"Well Iím off." Kathryn said.

"Have fun." Said her mother who had come in from outside.

"Yes, Kathy." Phoebe said sweetly. "Have fun!"

Kathryn gave her sister a look and then left.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn walked into the grand hall where the ball was being held.

As she descended the stairs, she was immediately hit upon by some of her bridge crew.

"Captain, you look ravishing." Neelix gushed.

Kathryn smiled.

"Thank you, Neelix."

She glanced around the hall and saw Tom and BíElanna dancing, oblivious to everyone else.

"Captain Janeway. You look nice." Said Seven as she approached on the Doctorís arm.

"Thanks, Seven. You look wonderful yourself."

Admiral Hogestyn approached.

"Captain Janeway. Iím glad you made it. Now that everyone is here, we can things underway."

Kathryn looked around again but didnít see who she was looking for.

"Commander Chakotay isnít here yet." She pointed out.

"Heís not coming Iím afraid." The admiral said.

"What do you mean heís not coming?" Kathryn asked, a feeling of loss and dread unexpectedly coming over her.

The admiral looked at the people standing around him and then turned back to the Captain.

"Well, youíre going to learn about this sooner or later anyway." He paused. "Commander Chakotay resigned his commission this afternoon."

Everyone gasped.

"He resigned?" BíElanna said disbelieving. "Just like that?Without a word to anyone?"

The Admiral nodded.

"He said all he wanted was to go home to Dorvan V and he figured it would be easier this way."

Kathryn moved away from the group, trying to register what the admiral had just told them.

"Resigned. Chakotay?" She thought to herself. "Oh God! Why? Why didnít he tell me?"

She didnít see Admiral Hogestyn approach.

"Captain." He said quietly. She looked up at him. "Chakotay asked me to give this to you once you knew."

He handed her a letter, written on paper. Kathryn clutched it in her hand.

"Thank you."

The admiral nodded and turned back to the crew still standing around them.

"Commander Chakotay expressed to me that he wanted you all to enjoy yourselves and have a good time."

"Yes. Come on. Itís a party." Said Neelix, his voice joyous. "And itís in our honour."

Tom patted Neelix on the shoulder.

"Neelix is right. Letís party!"

They broke up and went back to the party.

Kathryn watched her crew leave and then looked down at the letter in her hand.

She opened it and began to read. Her eyes filled with tears as she took in Chakotayís words. By the time she reached the end of the letter, she was covering her mouth with her hand to keep from crying out.

She started shaking her head, the tears beginning to spill from her eyes. She clutched the letter to her chest and ran out of the hall.

Her crew watched her go.

"Must have been some letter." Tom quipped.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"You just got home after being away for ten years, you canít leave." Said Gretchen Janeway fighting to keep her voice calm.

"I have to mother." Kathryn said as she continued packing her bag.

"But why?" I donít understand." Her mother asked. "Canít you just call him?"

"No. I have to see him. Ask him why."

"You can do that via the communication relay."

"No I canít." Kathryn said and zipped her bag.

"He explained everything in his letter."

"He lied in that letter. He wonít be able to lie to my face."

Kathryn grabbed her bag and moved towards the door, but her mother stepped in her way.

"How are you going to go after him?"

"I..." she stopped.ďDamn,I didnít think of that. Voyager is already undergoing her refit, so I canít take her."

She dropped her bag on her bed and moved into the living room where she sat in front of the comm-station.

"What are you going to do?" Her mother asked.

ďCall in a few favours."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Two weeks later, Kathryn stood in the transporter room of the Enterprise, which was in orbit around Dorvan V.

"Thank you, Jean-Luc." She said.

"Happy to be of service, Kathryn." He said.

Beverly stepped forward and embraced her cousin.

"I hope you find what youíre looking for. And who."

Kathryn hugged Beverly back.

"I hope so too."

The two women let go of each other and Kathryn stepped up onto the transporter pad.

"Wish me luck." Kathryn said.

"Energize." Picard said.

Seconds later, Kathryn disappeared.

"She really loves him." Jean-Luc said as he and Beverly left the transporter room and headed for the turbolift.

"Yes she does." Beverly said. "But sheís in denial about it."

"Whyís that?" Jean-Luc asked as they entered the lift and called out their destination.

Beverly called out for the lift to stop and wrapped her arms around her husbandís neck.

"Sheís afraid of changing their friendship." She said and kissed him softly on the lips.

"That has a familiar ring to it." Jean-Luc said as he pulled his wife closer. "Boy are they in for one hell of a ride."

"Oh, yeas" Beverly said. "One hell of a ride."

Jean-Luc then lowered his lips and kissed his wife passionately.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn materialized in the center of Chakotayís village. She looked around at the simple buildings and was reminded of New Earth.

"Captain Janeway?" Asked a male voicce.

She turned to look at an elderly man with gray hair and the same tribal tattoo on his temple that Chakotay wore.

"Yes. Iím Kathryn Janeway." She said. "You must be Skrinjaric. Chakotayís uncle."

Skrinjaric nodded.

"Yes. Welcome to Dorvan V."

Kathryn looked around again.

"Thank you."

"Heís not here." Skrinjaric said. Kathryn looked at him. "Oh, heís still on Dorvan, heís just not in the village. Heís gone on a spiritual quest."

"Oh."

"Come. Letís go to the house and get you settled."

Skrinjaric led her through the streets. A little while later, they came upon a lone house set in a group of trees.

"Beautiful." Kathryn whispered.

"Yes. Chakotay has always taken great pride in his home." His uncle said.

"This is Chakotayís house?" Kathryn asked.

His uncle nodded.

"Iíd invite you stay at my house, but it is quite small. However, Chakotay has plenty of room. And I know heíd insist on you staying with him."

They walked into the house and Kathryn immediately felt at home, once again thinking of New Earth.

"Just make yourself at home." Skrinjaric said.

"When will Chakotay be back?" Kathryn asked.

"We donít know. A spiritual journey can last anywhere from one day to a year."

"A year?"

Skrinjaric nodded.

"Chakotay left three days ago, so who knows. He could be home tomorrow or in another week." Skrinjaric paused. "Patience, Kathryn. He will be back."

Kathryn nodded.

"I know."

"Iíll go and let you get settled." He turned and headed for the door. "Dinner is at six. I will send my son, Chartoniuk to escort you to m home."

"Thank you, Skrinjaric."

He nodded and left.

Kathryn hefted her bag on her shoulder and headed upstairs.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

A week later, in the desert, Chakotay sat cross-legged in front of a roaring fire. His eyes were closed and his breathing deep.

"Tell me, ChakotayÖ have you found the answers you are searching for?" Asked Kolopeck.

Chakotay looked at his father.

"No, I donít believe I have." He answered. "I thought everything was settled between us and then that day... I..." He stopped and shook his head. "Oh, I donít know."

"Do you love her, son?" Kolopeck asked.

Chakotay closed his eyes and then suddenly opened them as he heard his name being cried out.

"KATHRYN!" He gasped. "Oh god, sheís in pain."

"Go to her, my son."

Chakotay nodded to his father and then...

Öhe was looking at the fire.

He concentrated on hearing Kathrynís voice. He heard it again.

"By the spirits, sheís on Dorvan." He said aloud and jumped up.

He quickly doused the fire, gathered his belongings and began the journey back to his village.

"Hold on, Kathryn!" He thought at her. "Iím coming!"

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Chakotay!" Kathryn cried out trying to sit up. "Chakotay, help me. I need you. Please come back. I need you."

Skrinjaric entered the room and walked over to his wife who was sitting on the bed next to Kathryn.

"Tresham, how is she?" He asked.

Tresham looked up at her husband.

"Not good. Iíve never seen anyone react this badly to Sebboh stalks before." She placed her hand on Kathrynís face. "She has an extremely high fever. Sheís delirious and in great pain."

Skrinjaric sighed.

"What can we do for her?"

"Find Chakotay. She keeps calling for him." Tresham said. "His presence may be of some comfort to her."

Skrinjaric nodded and caressed his wifeís cheek.

"I will."

He turned and left.

Tresham turned her attention back to Kathryn, who was still murmuring for Chakotay.

"It is clear to me that you love my nephew a great deal." Tresham said to the restless woman.

"KATHRYN!" Shouted Chakotay from downstairs.

Tresham stood.

"That was quick." She thought.

"Kathryn!" He called again as he burst into his bedroom. He rushed past his aunt without even seeing her and dropped to his knees beside the bed. He took Kathrynís hand.

"Kathryn, Iím here. Iím here Kathryn." He said, stroking her cheek.

"That didnít take your uncle long." Tresham commented, walking over to her nephew.

"What do you mean?" Chakotay asked. "Whatís wrong with her?"

"Your uncle went to find you. To tell you about Kathryn."

"I didnít see him." Chakotay said.

"Then how did you know she was here and that she was ill?"

Chakotay looked up into his auntís face.

"I heard her calling me. I felt her pain." He looked back down at her. "I knew she needed me."

Tresham nodded.

"I understand now."

"Chakotay and Kathryn are soulmates." She thought. "Just his being here has calmed her."

"Whatís wrong with her, Aunt Tresham?"

"Sheís having an allergic reaction to some Sebboh stalks." Tresham answered.

"What can I do for her?" Chakotay asked.

"Well, for now, just be here." Tresham said. "Your presence is the best medicine for her until we can get the medication to counteract her reaction."

Chakotay nodded and Tresham moved to leave the room.

"Oh, and, ChakotayÖ"

He looked over at her.

"She needs to have her fever brought down. Why donít you give her a sponge bath."

It was all Tresham could do to keep a straight face at his raised eyebrows. As she approached the stairs, she called back to him.

"Now would be a good time, Chakotay."

Chakotay looked after his aunt then turned back to Kathryn.

He then noticed a bowl on he nightstand. He got up, walked over to it. Dipping his fingers into it, he discovered that it was lukewarm.

He reached down and brushed his fingers across her forehead.

"Iíll be right back." He said softly.

He grabbed the bowl and disappeared into the bathroom. A minute later he returned with fresh cool water.

He set it on the nightstand as he sat on the bed beside her.

"Chakotay." She called for him in a weak voice. "Chakotay, I need you so much. Chakotay, come back. Please donít leave me."

"Iím here, Kathryn." He said as he wrung out the sponge.

He shifted his position and pulled back the sheet covering her body. His eyes widened and he felt a tightening in his groin.

Kathryn lay on the bed, clad only in a pair of lace panties.

Chakotay shook his head to clear his mind.

"Sheís ill you fool." He told himself and began to give her the sponge bath.

He started with her feet, moving the damp, cool sponge up her legs. He dipped the sponge back in the water and ran it under her legs as well.

He shifted and brought the sponge to her stomach, moving it up slowly, catching her sides as well.

Chakotay rewet the sponge and turned back to Kathryn. He paused with his hand just above her breasts.

"Donít think about it." He told himself but it was too late.

That night from five years ago flooded his mind.

He could still feel her hands clutching his head as he held her breast in his mouth, teasing her nipple with his tongue until it grew hard and caused her to moan.

Chakotay shook his head.

"Now is not the time for that." He thought. "Just do it and get it over with."

He lowered the sponge to her breast and applied the cooling water to her chest, trying to move quickly and get it done.

He rewet the sponge again and moved to her other breast. Just as the sponge made contact with her skin, her hand shot up and pushed his away.

"No." She murmured and pushed at his hand again.

"SshÖ" he said.ďItís all right, Kathryn. Thereís nothing funny going on here."

Her eyes fluttered open and she looked up at him.

He could see the confusion in her eyes as she regarded him.

"Chakotay?" She asked, unsure if he was really there.

"SshÖ donít talk." He said as he finished sponging the rest of her chest and quickly did her shoulders and neck.

She looked down and saw that she was practically naked and began to fidget.

"What... whatís go...?"

"Whatís going on?" He asked for her as he covered her with the sheet.

She nodded.

"Youíre having an allergic reaction to the Sebboh stalks you ate." He paused and ran the sponge over her face. "You have an extremely high fever so I am giving you a sponge bath to try and help break your fever."

She closed her eyes and shook her head.

"What is it, Kathryn?"

"Not the Sebboh stalks." She said, her voice hoarse.

"What do you mean, Kathryn?"

"I... bitten." She said rolling towards him and pointing to her leg.

Chakotay leaned over her and pulled the blanket back, revealing her thigh.

He gently probed the flesh and stopped when he came upon a small bite mark. He looked it over carefully and then moved her back onto her back.

"Kathryn, what bit you?"

She shook her head.

"Concentrate, Kathryn. This is important. What bit you?"

Chakotay watched as she tried to concentrate.

"Little... lizard." She managed. "Yellow... yell..."

"Yellow tuft of hair on its hair?" He asked.

She nodded weakly and he paled.

He turned towards the door.

"TRESHAM!" He shouted. "Tresham, come up here."

Tresham ran up the stairs and into the room.

"What is it?" She asked. "Whatís wrong?"

"Sheís not suffering from a Sebboh stalk allergy. She was bitten by a Nivlac lizard."

Tresham blanched.

"Are you sure?"

He nodded.

"She told me and Iíve seen the bite."

"Okay." Tresham began. "It takes a while for the symptoms to surface and she didnít start showing any symptoms until just after dinner."

"Which means she was bitten early this morning or afternoon." Chakotay said, pausing to look down at Kathryn. "Do we have the antibiotic available?"

Tresham shook her head.

"No, we need to have some made."

Chakotay looked up at her.

"We havenít had this happen in quite a long time." Tresham said. "It will take about an hour to process the antidote."

"Iíll help." He said. "You stay with Kathryn."

He moved to get up and was stopped by Kathrynís hand on his arm. He looked down at her.

"Donít... Chakotay... stay." She said softly.

Tresham smiled.

"Chakotay, stay with her. Your presence calms her."

Chakotay nodded.

"All right. Just try to hurry. I donít want her to suffer any longer than she has to."

"I understand." She paused. "Why donít you rest, Chakotay."

He shook his head.

"You wonít do her any good if youíre weak from lack of sleep."

"Iím not tired."

"Well, then why donít you just lie down anyway, on the bed beside her." Tresham told him. "This way youíll at least be resting and still with her."

Chakotay nodded.

"Iíll think about it."

"Iíll go and get started on the antidote."

"Thank you, Aunt Tresham." He said giving her a hug.

Tresham smiled and left.

Chakotay looked down at Kathryn and saw that her eyes were open and she was watching him.

"ChakotayÖ" she whispered. "Why?"

Chakotay knew immediately what she was asking and that confirmed why she was on Dorvan.

"Weíll talk about that later." He said.

She shook her head.

"No. Now." She said. "Why? And not even a good-bye."

Chakotay sat on the bed and put his finger to her lips.

"SshÖ weíll talk later, Kathryn. I promise." He said. "We have to concentrate on getting you better first."

She nodded and looked up at him, tears in her eyes.

"Iím frightened." She said faintly.

"Me too." He admitted. "But youíre going to be fine. I swear it."

She smiled weakly as she fought to stay awake.

"Itís okay, Kathryn. You need your rest." Chakotay said. "Close your eyes."

Minutes later, she was snoring softly. Chakotay stared at her and brushed a stray lock of hair from her face.

"Why didnít you just accept the explanation in the letter?" He asked softly. "If you had, you wouldnít be in this mess."

He shook his head as he stood up and moved over to the window.

"Stubborn woman." He muttered to himself as he gazed out the window at his home planet.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Any word from Kathryn, mom?" Phoebe asked as she entered her motherís house.

Gretchen shook her head.

"Not yet."

Phoebe sat beside her mother on the couch.

"Iíve never seen her act so impulsively before." Her mother said.

"Sheís in love with him." Phoebe said nonchalantly.

"She never acted like this with Justin or Mark and she was in love with them too." Gretchen pointed out.

"Yes. Thatís true." Phoebe said. "But I think this is different."

"How so?"

Phoebe shook her head.

"I donít know." She paused and gave her mother a look. "Take for example when Kath got home. She spent the whole time telling us about her journey and the crew."

"But she talked more about Chakotay then anyone else." Her mother finished.

"And she never talked that excessively about Mark and Justin."

"I noticed that." Her mother said. "I just thought it was because she had a deep respect for him as a First Officer." She paused. "But now that you mention it, she did become almost wistful when she talked about Chakotay."

Phoebe smiled.

"He must be something. After all, heís the one Kathryn was sent after ten years ago."

Gretchen looked out the window thoughtfully then back at her youngest daughter.

"I just hope she finds what sheís looking for. And that sheís okay."

Phoebe nodded her agreement.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Chakotay awoke with a start to his name being cried out.

"Chakotay! Chakotay, come back!"

He jumped out of the chair heíd fallen asleep in and ran across the room to the bed.

"Chakotay!" Kathryn whimpered as she thrashed about on the bed. "Please! Please donít leave me!"

"Kathryn." He said as he sat on the edge of the bed. "Kathryn, sshÖ Iím here Kathryn."

"Please, oh please." She cried, still moving around. "Please come back."

Chakotay realized she was dreaming.

"Kathryn." He said, trying to wake her. "Kathryn, wake up! Iím here, Kathryn. Wake up."

Suddenly her eyes flew open. She stared at him and then with a strangled cry she threw herself into his arms.

Chakotay wrapped his arms around her and slowly began to rock.

"SshÖ" He said softly. "Itís okay. Everythingís going to be okay."

She kept murmuring his name over and over as he held her.

A little while later, Chakotay felt her go limp in his arms. He looked down at her and saw that she had fallen back asleep. He moved to lay her back down, but she clutched at him and began to whimper his name. He gathered her up in his arms, sheet and all, and carried her over to the chair. He sat down and cradled her in his lap.

Chakotay felt her body begin to relax again as he stroked her hair and whispered soothing words to her.

He gazed down at her. Her face was still flushed with fever, which he could feel emanating from her body. She looked and felt like she had lost weight.

He felt a twinge of fear lance through his body at the thought that she might die if they didnít get the antidote administered soon.

He shook his head.

"Donít even think it, Chakotay." He told himself. "Kathrynís a tough lady. Sheís been in some pretty tough scrapes before and come out okay. Sheís gonna be fine."

He kept telling himself that as he slowly fell into a restless sleep.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Chakotay."

He felt a tapping on his shoulder and heard his name being called.

He opened his eyes and looked up into the anxious face of his aunt.

She held up a hypo.

"Is that?" He asked as she nodded. "Would you do it?"

Tresham nodded and pressed the hypospray to Kathrynís arm."

Chakotay released the breath heíd been holding as heard the telltale hiss of the medicine going into Kathrynís system.

"She should be feeling better in a few hours." Tresham said.

"Good." Chakotay nodded.

"Had another nightmare did she?"

"Yes. When I woke her up, she threw herself in my arms and would start to cry out when I tried to lay her back down." Chakotay explained.

Tresham placed her hand on her nephewís shoulder.

"No need to explain, Chakotay." She paused. "Your presence is a comfort to her. The deeper she goes into the fever, the more she needs to feel you near."

"I understand that." Chakotay said. "But why me?"

Tresham gave him a look.

"If you have to ask that, then you donít truly understand."

"What do you mean?"

"Think about it, Chakotay." She said moving towards the door. "She came all the way to Dorvan V to find you. You came back from the desert for her because you sensed she was in pain."

She walked out, then poked her head back in.

"And if it still doesnít make sense, just follow your heart."

Chakotay stared at the door after she left, shaking his head.

"Do you love her, son?"

His fatherís words came back to him.

He looked down at Kathryn. Memories of the last ten years came flooding back to him.

Their time spent on New Earth. The times in the holodeck and various talent nights. The night in her quarters when theyíd almost love.

"But everything changed after that night." He thought.

He brushed his fingers over her cheek.

"She is so beautiful. Even in this state."

His fatherís words flashed in his mind again

"Do you love her, son?"

"And if it still doesnít make sense, just follow your heart."

His auntís advice sounded again.

"Follow my heart." He said softly as he looked out the window.

"Chakotay."

He looked down at her as she sighed his name. He saw a soft smile on her lips.

"MmmÖ Chakotay." She sighed again as she snuggled closer to him. "That feels so good." She moaned softly. "Oh, Chakotay."

A smile came to his face as he realized she was dreaming.

"At least itís not a nightmare." He commented.

Just then, her body tensed and she cried out his name.

"No! Chakotay! Donít go!"

"Damn!" He swore. "Not again. Kathryn!" He shook her. "Kathryn, wake up."

Her eyes burst open and she bolted up in his lap.

He put his hands on her shoulders as she turned to look at him.

"Itís all right, Kathryn." He said gently. "Iím right here. Youíre going to be okay."

"The antidote?" She asked, looking slightly confused.

He nodded.

"Yes. We administered it about half an hour ago."

"How long?" She asked, not finishing the question.

"At least another hour." He answered, knowing what she was asking. "So why donít you go back to sleep."

He moved to get up and bring her back to the bed.

"No!" She said as she held herself rigid. "Iím tired of sleeping."

"Kathryn, you need your rest."

"Iíve rested enough."

"The antidote will work better if youíre relaxed." He said trying again to get up.

Kathryn grabbed the arms of the chair.

"No." She stated. "And thatís an order, Commander."

He gave her a weak smile.

"Iím not in Starfleet anymore, remember?"

He watched her face lose its intense look and felt her arms drop to her sides.

"Yes, I remember." She said softly.

A moment of silence filled the room.

"Why?"

It was barely audible, but he heard it and looked at her.

"I told you why in the letter." He said.

She shook her head.

"You lied in that letter." She said matter-of-factly, looking him in the eye.

"Everything I wrote in the letter was true, Kathryn."

"Bullshit."

He gave her a curious look and then shook his head.

"Iím sorry you donít believe me..."

"Thatís right." She interrupted. "I donít believe you. And after ten years, Iíve come to know you quite well."

She paused.

"So why donít you try again. Only this time with the truth."

"You really want the truth?" He asked.

She nodded.

"Just follow your heart." He heard his auntís words yet again.

"Okay." He said. "The truth."

And before she could say another word, Chakotayís lips were on hers, his tongue moving between her lips to plunder her mouth.

Kathryn moaned at the intensity of the kiss and wrapped her arms around his neck without thinking and returned the kiss with equal passion.

"Do you love her, son?"

"Yes, father. I love her." Thought Chakotay as he continued his passionate assault on her mouth.

"Phoebeís right." Kathryn thought as she continued to return Chakotayís impassioned kiss with all her being. "I am in love with him."

After what felt like an eternity, they broke apart, their breathing laboured.

Kathryn gazed up at him through tear filled eyes, with a faint smile on her lips.

"I knew you were lying." She said quietly.

Chakotay burst out laughing and hugged Kathryn to him.

When he calmed down, he grabbed her shoulders and pushed her back so he could see her face.

"Thatís why I couldnít stay." He said, his voice husky. "The thought of remaining on Voyager and just being friends, nothing more than Captain and First Officer, was too much." He paused. "However, in my defense, I truly believed everything I wrote in that letter to be true."

"Why didnít you say something sooner?"

He shrugged.

"I donít know. And then after that night, it was almost as if a wall had gone up between us again. And I didnít know what to do to break it down."

"Youíve thought about that night too?"

He nodded.

"Every night since it happened five years ago."

"So have I." She admitted quietly.

A moment of silence passed between them as they stared at each other.

"Weíve been such fools." She said suddenly. "Everyone saw what we didnít."

He nodded, thinking about his father and aunt.

"Everyone." He agreed.

She brought her hand up and caressed his cheek, moving her fingers up to trace his tattoo.

"I love you." She said softly.

"I love you, too." He said, brushing a lock of hair out of her face. "I have from the first moment I saw you."

She smiled at him through the tears that had begun to well up again in her eyes.

"So, now what?í She asked.

He shrugged.

"I donít know. Iíve never been in love with my commanding officer before."

"Iím not your commanding officer anymore, remember?" She said with a smile.

Chakotay couldnít help but smile back.

"Yes, I remember." He paused. "I guess I should send a message to Admiral Hogestyn."

"And tell him what?"

"That Iíve changed my mind. I would love to stay with Starfleet and continue to serve under the extraordinary Captain Kathryn Janeway." He paused. "In fact, maybe Iíll do that right now. Save them the trouble of looking for my replacement."

Kathryn smiled and stroked his cheek.

"Youíve got plenty of time for that."

He gave her a curious look.

"Why do you say that?í

Her smile then grew sheepish.

"Kathryn?"

"Before I left Earth, I told Admiral Hogestyn not to go looking for a new First Officer for me. That I would be bringing you back one way or another."

"That sure were you?"

"Of bringing you back? Yes." She lowered her eyes shyly. "Of this, deep down I guess I was hoping."

He cupped her chin and tilted her face back up.

"Hoping?"

She raised her eyes and looked deep into his.

"Yes, hoping." She paused. "Dreaming, praying, but never believing it would actually happen."

Chakotay gave her a knowing smile.

"I know what you mean." He paused and shook his head slightly. "Why were we both so stubborn?"

Kathryn shrugged.

"I donít know. But if truth be known, I believe that I was more stubborn that you."

"Thatís true."

She playfully slapped his arm.

"You donít have to agree so quickly."

He just chuckled and pulled her into his embrace. Kathryn sighed and snuggled closer against him.

"MmmÖ" She murmured. "Iíve waited so long for this."

"Me, too."

They sat that way for a while, not talking. Just staring out the window and holding each other.

After a bit, Chakotay looked down at her and smiled.

She was sleeping.

"So much for having had enough rest." He said quietly.

He cradled her in his arms and gently rose from the chair.

He laid her down on the bed, making sure she was covered with the sheet. He yawned then and realized that he was tired. He glanced at the chair and then back to the bed.

Making his decision, Chakotay stripped off his clothes until he was clad in only his black silk boxers.He lay down beside her on the bed and closed his eyes. Seconds later his eyes flew open.†† Kathryn had rolled over so that her head was resting on his chest and her body was pressing tight against his.His one hand began to caress her back as the other came up and clasped the hand of hers that was moving lightly on his chest.

Chakotay kissed the top of Kathrynís head.

"Sleep well, my love." He said softly.

"You too." She replied just as soft.

He glanced down and saw a soft smile on her lips.

"I love you." She whispered.

He pulled her closer.

"I love you too."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Voyagerís senior officers stood in front of a little shop.

"So where is he?" Tom asked. "This is the right address isnít it?"

BíElanna looked around.

"Have some patience, Tom. This is the right spot."

Seconds later, the doors in front of them opened.

"Come in! Come in!" Invited an extremely jovial Neelix. "Welcome to Kesí Kafe."

Everyone glanced around the small shop.

"This is your place?" Harry asked.

Neelix nodded.

"Congratulations, Neelix." Said Tom as he walked over to Neelix and patted him on the back. "Just make me one promise."

"Whatís that, Tom?" Neelix asked.

"No Leola root anything."

Everyone burst out laughing.

"I promise." Neelix said, laughing with his friends.

BíElanna walked over to Neelix.

"I like the name, Neelix. Iím sure Kes wouldíve too."

Neelix looked around and then over to the picture of Kes hung over the counter.

"Well, I wanted it to be called something special."

"You succeeded, Mr. Neelix." Said Tuvok from the doorway.

"Ah, Mr. Vulcan. You made it." Neelix said as he moved closer to Tuvok. "Iím so glad."

"I told you I would be here." Tuvok said. "So it would be illogical for me not to show up."

Everyone smirked.

"However, I will not be staying long." Tuvok paused. "I am leaving for Vulcan in ninety minutes as my business here on Earth is finished."

"Finally going to meet those grandchildren of yours?" Harry asked.

"Yes." He replied. "I find myself... eager... to meet them."

"I hope it all goes well." Said Neelix as he passed around some glasses of champagne. "And now that weíre all here, Iíd like..."

"Wait, Neelix." Interrupted Tom.

"What is it Tom?"

"Weíre not all here. The captainís not here."

Neelix nodded.

"Yes. Yes. I know that. Sheís not here because sheís not on earth."

"Wait a minute. What do you mean sheís not on earth?" Harry asked. "Where is she?"

Neelix shrugged.

"I donít know. All her sister told me was that she left a few weeks ago."

There was a moment of silence as they all tried to figure out where she went.

"Thatís it!" Exclaimed Paris, snapping his fingers. "Thatís where sheís gone."

"Where?" Asked Neelix.

"Think back to the night of our welcome home ball." He said.

"Your point, Mr. Paris." Said the doctor.

Tom gave them all a look that said Ďcome on guys, you can get thisí.

"Who wasnít at the ball? And who left without saying goodbye, even to the Captain. Leaving only a letter."

"CHAKOTAY!" They chorused.

"Sheís gone after Chakotay." BíElanna said.

"Yep." Said Tom.

"How can you be certain?" Asked Seven. "She could simply be on assignment."

"Come on, Seven, can you honestly say youíve never noticed the attraction between our Captain and First Officer?"

Seven hesitated but then nodded.

"I have noticed. But I refuse to believe the Captain would act so impulsively."

"She is in love with him."

Everyone turned to stare at Tuvok.

He drew himself up straighter under their scrutiny.

"Just because I am a Vulcan and do not experience emotion, does not mean that I am unable to see it in others."

They all glanced at each other and then Tom lifted his glass.

"Hereís to the Captain and Chakotay. May they find the happiness they deserve."

"To the Captain and Chakotay!" They chorused.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

She gazed down at him, watching him sleep.

Nothing escaped her notice. Not the rise and fall of his chest as he breathed. The flitter of his eyes under his lids.

She felt his arms tighten around her and heard him sigh contentedly, a soft smile on his lips.

She smiled too as she settled back against him, her head on his chest and listened to the beat of his heart.

He slowly opened his eyes as he felt her snuggle against him. He smiled and pressed a kiss to the top of her head.

Kathryn lifted her head and smiled down at him.

"Good morning, Chakotay." She said.

"Good morning." He replied, pulling her face down to his for a soft kiss.

Kathryn sighed and allowed him to pull her body onto his, their kiss growing a little more eager.

Kathryn broke off the kiss and raised her head to smile dreamily at him.

"How are you feeling?" He asked her.

Her smile grew into a full-fledged grin.

"I feel great." She said.

"You sure do." He said grinning at her as he ran his hands down her sided.

She shook her head.

"Youíre crazy."

"About you? Yes maíam I am."

She crossed her arms on his chest and rested her head on her arms and stared at him.

Chakotay looked down at her and smiled.

"But youíre not kidding me, you are feeling better?"

"Yes, Chakotay. I feel fine. No headache, no chills, no hot flashes. Just feeling great." She smiled again. "I mean, look at me."

"If you insist." He said with a mischievous grin.

She gave him a look.

"Iím trying to be serious here."

He nodded.

"Yes, I know. And youíre always so serious." He paused and brought his hand up to caress her cheek. "Kathryn, weíre not on Voyager right now. So I want you to relax and forget about everything but being here with me."

She smiled again and nodded.

"All right."

He gave her a questioning look.

"So youíre sure youíre feeling better?"

"Yes! Yes! Iím feeling better!"

"Good."

With that he rolled over and pinned her beneath him. Her arms slid up around his neck.

"I love you, Kathryn."

"And I love you, Chakotay."

He lowered his lips to hers. She sighed happily and opened her mouth to him, pulling his tongue in her mouth.

Kathrynís hands moved up into his hair as their tender kiss quickly grew into a scorchingly, frenzied dance.

She moaned as his hands moved down the sides of her body, coming to rest on her hips.

Chakotay broke off the kiss and flamed a trail of sweltering nips, licks and kisses down her neck to the hollow of her throat.

Kathryn moaned again, louder, as Chakotayís hands slid under the sheet that was covering her and came into contact with her bare skin.

"Oh God, Chakotay!" She groaned as his mouth moved further down to plant tiny kisses between her breasts.

Her nails raked across his back as his body pressed tighter against hers.

Chakotay lifted his head and gave her a smoldering look.

"I want you, Kathryn." He said, his voice husky with desire.

She looked up at him, her eyes mirroring his.

"I want you too, Chakotay." She replied. "So much."

She grabbed his face in her hands and pulled him back down for another fierce kiss.

Chakotay groaned into her mouth as her hands once again resumes their trek down his body. When they came into contact with his boxers, Kathryn slid them under the waistband. Squeezing his ass, she drew his body closer.

Just as Kathryn was moving to remove Chakotayís shorts, they heard a loud crash.

Chakotay rolled of Kathryn and sat up.

"Iím sorry!" Tresham said, her face red. "I... I uh... thought youíd... like something to eat. Iím so sorry."

Chakotay glanced at Kathryn, who was also sitting up now, clutching the sheet and saw a bemused smile on her face.

"Itís all right." Chakotay said as he watched his aunt squat down to clean up the mess sheíd made.

"Iím so, so sorry." She kept saying.

"Tresham, donít worry about it." Kathryn said from the bed.

"Kathrynís right." Chakotay said as he kneeled down beside his aunt. "It was very thoughtful of you."

"I should have knocked." She said.

"And I should have shut and locked the door." He said and then grabbed her hands. "So stop apologizing."

She smiled.

"Okay."

"Now, is there more of this," he gestured to the spilled food, "downstairs?"

Tresham nodded.

"Well then, give us a few minutes and weíll be down."

Tresham stood, nodded and quickly left.

Not able to hold it in any longer, Kathryn burst out laughing.

Chakotay gathered up the tray and stood. Placing it on the dresser, he looked over at her.

She looked over at him through tear-filled eyes and started laughing harder.

"Think itís funny do you?" He asked laughter in voice, as he moved towards her.

ďMmhmm." She said still laughing.

Suddenly Chakotay dove onto the bed, pinning her down.

She looked up at him, her laughter subsiding.

"Itís so wonderful to hear you laugh." He said.

She gave him a mischievous look and suddenly started tickling him.

"Ahh!" He cried out as he began to laugh. "Oh youíre gonna get it now."

He began to tickle her back.

She yelped with laughter and squirmed under him.

Chakotay continued tickling her until Kathryn grabbed his face in her hands and pulled him down for a kiss.

He immediately stopped his torture on her ribs and gave into the kiss.

Kathryn used this opportunity to roll them over. Now lying on top of him, Kathryn broke off the kiss and sat up on him, holding the sheet against her.

Chakotay gazed up at her with a contented smile on his lips.

"Have I told you yet today how much I love you?" He asked.

She blushed slightly as she nodded.

"Yes you have, but Iíll never tire of hearing it." She said with a grin.

Chakotay brought his hand up to caress her cheek.

"I love you, Kathryn Janeway. I feel as though Iíve been waiting my whole life for you."

"Chakotay." She whispered as she turned her face into his palm.

When she looked back down at him, she had tears in her eyes.

He brushed them away.

"What are these for?"

She smiled.

"I feel the same way about you."

He pulled her down for a gentle kiss. Moments later, she lifted her head.

"I really hate to do this, but..."

"We should go down for breakfast." He finished for her.

She nodded and he sighed.

"Well, if we must." He said.

She laughed and rolled off him.

He got up and walked over to his closet. Seconds later he returned and handed her a green silk robe, as he slipped on a black one.

"Here you go milady."

"Thank you kind, sir." She said as she dropped the sheet and stood up to put on the robe.

Chakotay gazed at her practically naked body and sighed again.

"What?" She asked as she fastened the robe.

"I was just thinking about was going to happen until my aunt interrupted."

Kathryn chuckled and walked over to him. Grabbing the ties of his robe, she pulled him close.

He rested his arms on her shoulders.

"We have plenty of time for that." She said. "Iím not going anywhere just yet and when I do, youíre coming with me."

She stood on her tiptoes and gave him a quick kiss. She then stepped away from him and headed for the door.

"So be patient, my love."

"Iíve been patient for ten years." He grumbled with a smile on his face.

She laughed.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"I still canít believe I walked in on them." Tresham was telling Skrinjaric as she served him a cup of coffee. "And I just stood there after I dropped the tray."

Skrinjaric laughed and grabbed his wife, pulling her into his lap.

"I love you, wife." He said and kissed her.

"What was that for?" She asked him after they kissed.

"Canít a husband just kiss his wife and tell her he loves her? Does there have to be a reason?í

"No." She said as she wrapped her arms around his neck. "Absolutely not."

"But I wouldíve given anything to see their faces and yours when you dropped that tray." He laughed.

"Oh you!" She said.

She was cut off before she could say anymore by her husbandís mouth covering hers.

"Is that coffee I smell?" Came Kathrynís voice from just outside the kitchen.

Tresham jumped and tried to get out of Skrinjaricís lap before they entered the kitchen, but had little success.

"Sorry." Apologized Chakotay as he saw them

Tresham blushed as she regarded her nephew and Kathryn.

They stood in the doorway, their arms wrapped around each otherís waists.

"No need to apologize you two. A tit for a tat." Skrinjaric said as he glanced over at his wife. "Besides a little voyeurism now and then is good for the soul."

Chakotay grinned and the women blushed.

Tresham slapped her husbandís shoulder.

"Youíre terrible, husband."

Skrinjaric laughed.

"That I am. That I am."

Chakotay and Kathryn laughed as they sat at the table, unconsciously moving their chairs closer together.

His aunt and uncle exchanged knowing looks.

"So, was that coffee I smelled?" Kathryn asked.

Tresham nodded.

"Yes, it was. Would you like some?"

Chakotay laughed.

Kathryn gave him a look then turned to Tresham.

"Yes please Tresham. Iíd love a cup."

"Whatís so funny?" Asked Skrinjaric as Chakotay was still laughing.

"My Captain lives for coffee." He said. "Iíve yet to see her make it through a day without at least one cup."

Kathryn swatted him and he grabbed her hand.

"Thatís not true and you know it." She said, affection in her voice.

"Yes it is." Chakotay said, placing a kiss in her palm. "Face it, Kathryn, youíre a coffee addict."

She sighed exaggeratingly and smiled when Tresham placed a steaming cup in front of her.

She pulled her hand out of Chakotayís and grabbed her cup with both hands. She glanced at Chakotay and saw him watching her with a bemused smile.

"Okay, I admit it." She said. "Iím a coffee addict. Are you satisfied?"

Chakotay laughed and leaned over to her.

"Not yet." He whispered in her ear and gave her a kiss on the cheek.

She blushed as she took a sip of the hot liquid.

Skrinjaric and Tresham smiled at each other.

"So, what are your plans for today?" Tresham asked as she brought the food to the table.

Kathryn, helping herself to the food looked from Tresham to Chakotay and back and shrugged her shoulders.

"Whatever Chakotay wants to do is fine with me." She said.

"I figured weíd just go for a short walk and then relax around the house." He said. "After all, sheís still recovering."

"Good idea." Said his uncle. "You donít want to push yourself too hard."

He finished looking at Kathryn.

"Chakotay, you should take her for a walk by the river." Tresham said. "Itís beautiful this time of year."

"You wouldnít happen to have a boat, would you?" Kathryn asked.

"Not funny, Kathryn." Chakotay said.

Kathryn laughed.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Tresham was right." Kathryn said as she leaned back in Chakotayís arms. "This is beautiful."

"So you like my little village?" He asked.

"Mmhmm." She murmured and then turned in his arms. "I understood now why you joined the Maquis."

Chakotay smiled at her as he brushed the hair out of her face.

"Do you really?" He asked quietly.

She nodded and then looked down.

"I never did agree with the way the Federation handled things with the Cardassians." She looked up at him. "Who knows, if things had been different, you might have been hunting me down."

"Thatís just one of the reasons I love you so much." He said.

"Whyís that?"

"Your ability to see both sides of the issue."

She smiled.

"So what are the other reasons?"

Chakotay laughed and laced his fingers behind his head as he leaned further back against the tree.

"Well, letís see." He began. "Youíre smart. Youíre compassionate and the strongest woman Iíve ever met." He paused and got a twinkle in his eyes. "Youíre stubborn, mule-headed, single-minded..."

He began to laugh as she started tickling him.

He grabbed her hands.

"Youíre also the most beautiful, attractive, charming, exquisite, stunningly provocative, sexy woman I know."

He smiled at her as she began to blush.

She leaned forward and gave him a light kiss.

"Thank you." She said and then it was her turn to give him a mischievous look. "What do you mean stubborn?"

Chakotay laughed.

"Shall I give examples?"

They laughed together and Chakotay hugged Kathryn to his chest. Kathryn sighed and wrapped her arms around him.

They sat that way for a few minutes until the little kisses Kathryn was placing on his neck began to distract him.

His hands leisurely moved up her back and his fingers ensnared themselves in her hair.

He pulled her back and their eyes fastened on each other.

Chakotay eased Kathryn closer and covered her mouth with his.

He traced the outline of her mouth with his tongue, seeking entrance. She opened her mouth and allowed his tongue to delve deep inside, exploring her mouth.

The soft kiss quickly grew into a frenzied dance of tongues and hands as both of them pulled at each other, trying to get as close together as possible.

They slowly broke apart and stared at each other, not speaking. No words were necessary.

They rose quickly and made their way through the village towards Chakotay's house.

Finally after what seemed like an eternity, they reached the house and quickly entered.

He locked the door and no sooner turned around when he was pushed up against it.

Kathryn wrapped her arms around his neck as she kissed him savagely, her body pressing tightly against his.

Chakotay groaned, enveloping her in his arms, pulling her closer and returned her kiss with equal passion.

Then without breaking the kiss, Chakotay scooped Kathryn into his arms and made his way upstairs.

Upon entering his room, Chakotay set her down at the foot of the bed.

Kathryn smiled at him and sat on the edge of the bed. She grabbed his hands and pulled him so that he was standing directly in front of her.

She reached up and slowly unbuttoned his shirt. She let it hang open and ran her hands up his chest. Her fingers brushed over his nipples. They pebbled under her touch and he groaned softly.

Kathryn pushed his shirt off his shoulders, letting it slide down his arms to crumple on the floor.

She smiled up at him as her fingers began to unbuckle his belt. She brought her eyes back to her task.

Chakotay watched as Kathryn unbuttoned and then unzipped his pants. She slipped her hands in the waistband and tugged the pants over his hips.

She pushed them to his knees and then helped him step out of them, leaving him clad in just his black silk boxers.

"Kathryn." He said softly.

She raised her finger to his lips.

"SshÖ" she said quietly and then gave him a sensuous smile.

So softly that he thought he imagined it, she traced her fingers around and over the noticeable bulge in his shorts.

She heard his sharp intake of breath as she yanked down his boxers and wrapped her hand around his engorged member.

Kathryn stroked him, moving slowly up and down the length of his shaft, causing him to moan and grab her shoulders for balance.

She slid one hand around and grabbed the cheek of his ass, pulling him closer.

"Oh God, Kathryn!" He groaned as she took his pulsing member in her mouth.

Kathryn smiled around him as she worked him up and down with her lips and tongue. Her one hand remained on his ass, holding him while her other hand came up and gently massaged his balls.

Chakotayís hands moved from her shoulders to clench in her hair.

Every time she nipped him gently with her teeth or swirled her tongue around the very sensitive head of his shaft, his fingers clenched tighter in her hair.

Not being able to take it anymore and knowing that he would explode if she didnít stop, Chakotay grabbed her face in his hands and pulled her head back as he stepped back.

She looked up at him with an almost wicked gleam in her eyes.

"Youíre a vixen." Chakotay said as he pulled her up.

He kissed her with a gentleness that belied the emotions and sensations coursing through his body.

He spun them around and sat on the bed in front of her, his erection standing straight, tall and glistening in the sunlight pouring into the room.

Chakotayís hands moved over Kathrynís body lightly, touching her through the silky material of her clothes.

He reached behind her, under her blouse and unsnapped her bra. He quickly removed it from under her blouse and let it drop.

His hands then moved to the zipper of her skirt. Pulling it down, he let her skirt join his clothes on the floor. He smiled as his eyes traveled up her bare legs to the lacy panties she wore.

Chakotay raised his hands and leisurely unbuttoned her blouse. He sat back, letting her blouse hang open and gazed at the swell of her breasts that were peaking out of the opening.

"Beautiful." He murmured. "Just beautiful."

His hands clasped her waist and pulled her closer. He buried his face between her breasts and kissed the smooth skin.

Kathryn moaned as he turned his head and placed little kisses all over her breast, moving to take her nipple in his mouth.

Chakotay swirled his tongue around her nipple and nipped it lightly until it stiffened. He then turned his attention to her other nipple while his hand came up to fondle the first.

He brought his other hand up to cover her breast as he kissed a trail down her body.

Kathryn watched Chakotayís voyage through lidded eyes and couldnít suppress a giggle when he flicked his tongue in her navel.

Chakotay glanced up at her with passion-filled eyes and gave her a lustful grin as he slipped to his knees in front of her, pulling her panties down at the same time.

Kathryn still watching and knowing what was going to happen, was not prepared for the sensations that engulfed her when Chakotay covered her with his mouth.

"Chakotay!" She gasped as his tongue and lips moved over the hard, sensitive nub of flesh. "Oh God! Oh..."

His gentle sucking quickly grew more intense and Kathryn had to grab his shoulders to keep from collapsing on him. Her hands clutched him tighter as he moved and darted his tongue into her.

Her eyes widened and breathing became shallow as the powerful sensations created by Chakotayís mouth and tongue shot up her body.

Chakotayís hand slid down her body to join his mouth. His thumb slipped between her folds and began to stroke and rub her very swollen clitoris while his tongue continued thrusting inside her.

Kathryn started to whimper as she felt the pressure in her loins begin to build and clenched his shoulders tighter, her nails biting into his flesh.

Chakotay was so engrossed in the tremors that were beginning to shake her body that he didnít even notice her nails piercing his skin. He began to plunge his tongue into her quicker and his thumb stroked her more fervently.

"Oh God!" Kathryn cried out as the tremors began to grow in intensity. She started to thrust herself against his mouth, wanting more, which he gladly gave.

Suddenly, Kathrynís body convulsed as she felt like the earthquake that was her orgasm was consuming her.

Her knees gave out and she collapsed into his lap. Resting her head on his shoulder, she tried to slow her breathing.

Chakotayís hands moved slowly and softly all over her body, slipping between them to resume stroking her.

Kathrynís head snapped up and she looked at him with glazed eyes.

Her eyes suddenly widened and a soft moan escaped her lips when Chakotay slipped a finger inside her.

"Chakotay." She breathed. He began to move his finger in and out of her. "Oh, Chakotay! I... oh my..."

Chakotay gave her a quick smile as he moved in to claim her lips with his.

Her arms went around his neck as she reciprocated his kiss, tasting herself on his mouth.

As they kissed, Kathryn felt his swollen, throbbing member pressing against her belly. She slipped her hand between them and wrapped it around him.

It was Chakotayís turn to gasp as she moved her hand on him, stroking his length in tandem with his thrusting finger.

They remained that way for a few minutes, stroking each other and kissing until neither one could stand it.

Kathryn broke off the kiss and gave him a heated look. He returned the look with equal fire.

No words were spoken as Chakotay withdrew his finger and cupped her ass in his hands. He lifted her and she guided him to her entrance.

Poised and ready, they looked at each other, their eyes locking. With a thrust of his hips, he entered her in one swift stroke.

Kathryn cried out as his length filled her completely. She gripped his shoulders tightly, willing him to hold still.

"Chakotay!" She gasped, squeezing his shoulders again.

Chakotay held still and searched her eyes. He saw the passion pouring out of their blue depths and also saw a flicker of pain.

He brought his hand up to her cheek.

"Kathryn?" He said, his eyes questioning her.

She smiled and shook her head, answering his question.

"Itís just been..."

"A while." He finished for her. "I understand."

Kathrynís smile turned sensual and Chakotay groaned s she clenched her inner muscles tight and wrapped her legs around him. She then began to move on him, slowly raising and lowering her body.

Chakotay groaned again, letting her set the pace. He moved his hands to her breasts, kneading them and then dipped his head to take one breast into his mouth.

Kathrynís head fell back as she began to move quicker.

Chakotayís hands dropped to her waist as he began to thrust into her, matching her rhythm.

A small time later, Chakotay stopped thrusting into her and he grabbed her waist, stilling her movements also.

Kathryn looked at him, the question in her eyes.

"My legs." He said hoarsely as he cupped her bottom in his hands and inched them up so that he was sitting on the bed, Kathryn still straddling him.

"Better?í She asked, her husky voice breathless.

He shifted a little more so that they were in the middle of the bed and then without warning, Chakotay rolled so that he was lying on top of her.

"Better." He murmured as he seized her mouth in a frenzied kiss.

Kathryn moaned into his mouth as he began to press himself into her. She unwrapped her legs from around his waist, planted them on the bed and thrust up to meet him.

Chakotay grabbed Kathrynís hands, entwining his fingers with hers and pinned them over her head.

He raised his head and gazed into her eyes, deep blue eyes that mirrored his hungry passion so forcefully.

Every time Chakotay withdrew, Kathryn would clench her inner muscles, creating even more pleasurable sensations for both of them.

Chakotay felt the tremors starting to quake through Kathrynís body and knew she was as close to her orgasm as he was to his.

The little sounds, sighs and moans Kathryn had been making throughout their lovemaking grew louder with each thrust of their bodies.

"Oh God!" Moaned Kathryn as all the sensations and feelings began to coalesce. "CHA-KO-TAY!"

Chakotay began to thrust quicker and harder, moving deeper inside her with each stroke.

Kathrynís head moved from side to side, while her body kept lifting to meet his, their movements in total concert.

Suddenly, Kathrynís body stiffened and then she cried out his name as her orgasm tore through her body.

Groaning her name, Chakotay impaled himself deep within her, his orgasm bursting forth and enveloping him.

Together, Kathryn and Chakotay rode on the waves of the supernova that was their orgasm. Traveling beyond warp speed, they clung to each other until slowly they returned to their bodies.

Having collapsed on top of her, Chakotay rolled over and gathered her up in his arms.

Kathryn lay her head on his chest and listened to the still rapid beating of his heart. She traced her fingers lazily across his chest.

"Oh, myÖ" she sighed contentedly.

Chakotay grinned as he kissed the top of her head.

"Oh my indeed." He agreed.

Kathryn propped herself up beside him.

"I was almost expecting your aunt to walk in on us again." She said with a smile.

Chakotay chuckled.

"Or Harry calling for some reason or other."

This time, Kathryn chuckled.

"I can still see the reaction on Harryís face when he realized that heíd interrupted us."

"I thought he was going to fall into his console."

They laughed.

Chakotay brought his hand up to cares her cheek as he stopped laughing.

"I love you, Kathryn. So much so that I canít put it into words."

She turned her face into his caress.

"I love you too, Chakotay. So much that my heart aches.

He cupped her face and brought her lips down to his in a gentle kiss.

She looked down at him with tears in her eyes and was about to speak when she heard a low grumbling. Her eyes widened in amusement.

"Hungry?" She asked.

"Ravenous." He answered. "After all, we did just work up an appetite."

Kathryn smiled.

"So, why donít we go downstairs and Iíll cook us something."

A look of mock horror crossed his features.

"You cook?! Oh no! Please tell me youíre joking."

Kathryn jabbed him in the ribs.

"No, Iím not joking."

"But I thought you couldnít cook."

"I can cook. I just normally hate doing it. Coffee only."

Chakotay grabbed her and pulled her on top of him. He smiled at her.

"I love getting you going."

"I know you do." She said giving him a quick kiss. "You always have."

"But what I loved more than anything was trying to make you blush." Which she did. "You always looked more beautiful to me when you did."

"I used to love to touch you and get as close to you as I could to see if youíd react." She smiled. "And you always did. Even just a little."

"How?"

"Sometimes you would blush or just your ears would turn red. Sometimes I noticed that youíd tend walk hunched over and then Iíd know Iíd gotten to you."

"I always knew you were doing that on purpose."

She grinned.

"And you never disappointed me."

They just looked at each other and then burst out laughing.

"All those years." Chakotay said as his laughter died down. "All those years together when we could have really been together."

"I know." She said. "But weíre together now."

"Thatís right." He agreed. "And boy are we ever going to make up for lost time."

Kathryn chuckled.

"After we eat." She said as she rolled off him.

Chakotay watched as Kathryn slipped her panties back on and then picked up his shirt, putting that on as well. He watched as she rolled the sleeves up and then buttoned it up.

Kathryn looked up and saw him watching her. She quickly finished with the buttons and then bent over and picked up his boxers.

"Come on." She said as she threw them at him, hitting him in the face.

"Oh youíre going to get it for that." He said laughing and scrambling out of the bed.

Kathryn yelped with laughter and ran out of the room.

By the time Chakotay got downstairs, Kathryn already had the food started. He walked up behind her and wrapped his arms around her.

"So what are you making?"

"Actually, Iím just reheating some stew from yesterday."

"Going to cook me something huh?" He said, humour in his voice.

She elbowed him in the ribs.

"Just go sit down or you donít get any lunch."

He snickered, gave her a peck on the cheek and then sat at the table.

A few minutes later, Kathryn brought two bowls over to the table and then went to get two glasses of milk.

After placing the glasses on the table, she was about to sit down beside him when Chakotay grabbed her wrist and pulled her into his lap.

"Chakotay!" She exclaimed. "Weíre supposed to be eating."

"And we are." He said bringing a spoonful of stew to her lips. "I just want to keep on holding you. Is that a crime?" He asked, taking a bite of stew.

Kathryn sighed and rested against him.

"No. In fact, I could get rather used to this.

Chakotay chuckled.

"The crew would love it!" He paused and lifted another spoonful to her. "And I think we should do this at least once on the ship. Just to see their reactions."

Kathryn laughed.

"Youíre terrible. But I love you anyway."

They laughed together as they fed each other.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Good morning, mom." Phoebe said as she entered the kitchen. "Any word yet? Itís been almost two months."

Gretchen nodded.

"Yes. Kathryn called yesterday. Sheís fine."

"And?" Urged phoebe as she poured a cup of tea.

"And she talked to Chakotay. Heís agreed to come back as her First Officer."

"And?"

Gretchen sighed and shook her head.

"Thatís all I know." Your sister didnít say anymore."

"You mean she didnít say when she was coming home?" Gretchen shook her head. "I donít believe it. Thatís so unlike her."

"Well you, yourself, pointed out that Kathrynís in love with him."

"Thatís true." Phoebe sipped her tea. "Who would have thought Kathryn could act so impulsively."

Gretchen laughed.

"I always knew she had it in her. She just needed to relax a little."

"Well I for one can hardly wait to meet this Chakotay."

"You and me both." Gretchen said as she sat back to ponder about the man who had so integrated himself into her oldest childís life and heart.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn rolled over in her sleep and quickly woke as she realized she was alone in the bed. She sat up and listened for sounds to indicate Chakotayís whereabouts. A few moments later she heard a noise coming through the window.

She smiled to herself as she stretched and then got out of bed. Wrapping the green robe around her, she made her way downstairs and out to the back of the house.

Chakotay lifted the ax and brought it down on the log, slicing it in two.

Oblivious to the woman watching him from behind, he proceeded to continue chopping.

Kathryn quietly sat on the steps of the porch and regarded the darkly handsome man before her.

A smile cam to her lips as once again it dawned on her; she and Chakotay were lovers.

"Lovers indeed." She thought to herself. "Chakotay wasnít lying when he said weíd make up for lost time."

She couldnít stop the rush of pleasure shooting through her as she thought back on the last two and a half months.

Since that first afternoon, she and Chakotay had made love all over the house, some places several times. And each day, they made love to each other numerous times; always discovering something new about what pleased the other.

But what Kathryn found she enjoyed, as much as the sex (and yes she really enjoyed the sex) was lying in his arms, being held by him and talking. This type of intimacy was new to her and she loved it.

Sheíd always known that she liked to touch Chakotay. On Voyager, she did it all the time. A touch on the shoulder to convey concern or a light brush of hands before an away mission that said to be careful and good luck.

Now, a simple thing like brushing fingers carried all sorts of new meaning.

Kathryn was brought out of her musings when she felt his eyes on her. She looked up at him and her smile grew as she saw him smiling at her.

"Good morning, my heart." She said as she stood and walked into his arms.

"Good morning." He replied, lowering his lips to hers. "Sorry I wasnít there when you woke."

She gave him a quick squeeze.

"Thatís okay. I know your uncle asked you to chop this wood for him."

"Well, Iím finished now." He gestured to the pile of wood. "This should last a while."

"Have you eaten yet?" She asked.

"No. I was waiting until you woke up." He paused as he bent and scooped her into his arms. "Although I was really hoping youíd still be sleeping when I finished."

"Whyís that?" she asked, already knowing what his response would be.

"I was planning on waking you properly." He grinned.

Kathryn laughed as she wrapped her arms around his neck.

"But since youíre already awake, care to join me in the shower?"

"MmmÖ sounds good to me."

Chakotay pressed a quick kiss to her lips and started for the house.

"Chakotay."

Chakotay turned with her in his arms to look at his uncle.

"I see you finished chopping the wood. Thank you." Said Skrinjaric.

"Yes. Just finished in fact." He paused and gestured towards the house with his head. "I was just heading in to take a shower."

"Then I wonít keep you. I really came by to tell you that your aunt would you and Kathryn to come for dinner tonight, as this is your last night on Dorvan."

Chakotay looked at Kathryn, who nodded.

"Okay. Weíll be there. What time?"

"Six-thirty."

"Sounds good."

"Then I will go and let you two go take your shower."

With that, he turned and left.

Chakotay and Kathryn looked at each other and smiled. They hadnít bothered hiding their relationship. Everyone knew. And it was wonderful and refreshing to be so open about their feelings.

"I love your family." She said.

"And they love you. Not half as much as I do. But then I donít think anyone loves you as much as I do." He paused and smiled at her mischievously. "On a scale of one to ten, Iíd say that..."

"Chakotay." She interrupted.

"Yes?"

"Shut up and carry me inside for that shower."

"Yes, maíam." He said and broke into a run.

Kathrynís laughter could be heard all over the village.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Kathryn." Chakotay called to her from the bedroom. "What time is the Enterprise supposed to be here tomorrow?"

"Nineteen hundred hours." She answered from the bathroom. "Why?"

"Just wondering." He said as he slipped into his pants. He looked over at the clock on the wall. "You want to hurry. Weíre due at my auntís in fifteen minutes."

"Is this fast enough?" She asked, stepping into the room.

Chakotay smiled when he saw her. She was wearing a light green slip dress that hung mid-thigh. Her hair, which had grown long again, hung in soft curls about her shoulders.

"You look beautiful." He said.

She blushed.

"Thank you. Are you ready?"

He grabbed something off the dresser, putting it in his pocket and then nodded.

"Ready as Iíll ever be." He commented, offering her his arm.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Later that evening, Chakotay and Kathryn strolled leisurely, hand in hand, along the river.

"That was a terrific dinner." Kathryn said. "Your aunt is an excellent cook."

"It was pretty good, wasnít it?"

Kathryn glanced around. The full moon providing just enough light to see by.

"Iím going to miss it here." She sighed.

"Me too." Chakotay said. "But at least now we can pretty much return anytime we want."

"Thatís true." She paused and then continued softly. "I could handle living here."

Chakotay stopped and looked at her.

"Could you really?"

"Mmhmm." She murmured. "Itís so peaceful here."

"But there arenít any replicaters."

She swatted him playfully.

"Ah, but there is a bathtub. A nice, big, comfortable bathtub." She said.

They laughed and Kathryn heard him groan softly and knew that he was remembering their times in that tub. She squeezed hi hand and he looked at her.

Even in the dark, Kathryn could see the love and desire in his eyes. She smiled at him, knowing hers held the same thing.

Chakotay pulled her into his arms, embracing her tightly. She wrapped her arms around him and held him just as tight.

"What?" She pulled back slightly, after hearing him whisper something.

"I asked you if youíd marry me."

Her eyes widened and filled with tears. She opened her mouth to reply, but nothing came out. All she could do was nod her head.

"I take it thatís a yes." He said, reaching into his pocket.

He pulled out a ring and slipped it on her finger.

"Oh yes, Iíll marry you." She exclaimed when she finally found her voice and gazed at the ring. "Oh, Chakotay, itís beautiful."

"Not as beautiful as you."

She clasped his face in her hands and stood on her tiptoes.

"I love you." She said just before she kissed him.

Chakotay returned the kiss as he wrapped his arms around her once again.

When they broke off the kiss, Kathryn rested her head on his chest, while his hands rubbed her back.

"I have one other question." She lifted her head. "Will you marry me tomorrow before we leave? Iíd really like to have a traditional Indian wedding." He paused. "And when we get back to Earth, we can have another ceremony if you like."

She smiled through her tears.

"That sounds wonderful."

He returned her smile and then grabbed her hand.

"And now, what do you say we head back to the house. Iíd really like to make love to my bride-to-be."

She gave him a smoky look.

"Lead the way.í

Twenty minutes later, Chakotay lay naked on the bed. He was just about to call for her when she appeared in the doorway.

He inhaled sharply and felt himself grow hard at the sight of her.

She smiled at his reaction and sauntered towards the bed, the sheer nightgown she wore, billowing around her legs.

She stopped when she got to the bed. Then giving him a seductive smile, she raised her hands to the straps. She pushed the straps off her shoulders and slowly lowered her arms, allowing the gown to gradually fall in stages to her feet.

Chakotay groaned as he watched inch y inch of her being revealed until she stood naked before him.

"By the Spirits, you are the most beautiful woman Iíve ever seen."

Kathryn felt her whole body blush at his compliment and then heat up under the intensity of his gaze.

He extended a hand to her, which she took and allowed him to pull her onto the bed and across his body.

Kathryn lowered her lips to his for a slow, deep kiss that went on and on.

As they kissed, Chakotayís hand slowly traveled up Kathrynís body, causing her to moan into his mouth.

Kathryn could feel his hard length pressing against her now moist and waiting entrance and slid her legs up so that she was almost straddling him. She moved her hand down between their bodies and took his rigid staff in her hands.

Kathryn raised her body and slowly impaled herself on him.

They moaned together as their bodies became one. Neither one moved, wanting to just enjoy the exquisite feelings coursing through their bodies.

Gradually, Kathryn began to tighten and untighten her inner muscles around his throbbing member. She smiled when he groaned and then began to move on him. Her movements, slow at first, soon grew frenzied.

All of a sudden, she cried out as she was hit with what she knew to be only the first of many orgasms.

She collapsed on his chest and could still feel him pulsating within her.

Chakotay, likewise, could feel her inner walls quaking around his aching member.

Before she had a chance to recover, even a little, from her orgasm, Chakotay rolled so that his body covered hers.

With his hands planted on either side of her head, Chakotay raised his upper body and began to thrust into her.

Kathryn cried out again as she was immediately hit with another rush of pleasure and then another one half the intensity.

"Cha-ko-TAY!" She groaned.

He grinned and continued to drive his hard length into her, moving deeper and deeper with each stroke. He paused mid thrust to dip his head to her breast, taking her hard nipple in his mouth.

Kathryn bucked against him as his tongue swirled around her nipple, begging him to continue.

Chakotay released her breast and looked down at her. She returned his gaze through lidded eyes.

He once again began to move inside her, with long, slow strokes, pausing before each thrust with just the head of his shaft still inside her. Then he would slowly press back into her.

Kathryn whimpered with pleasure as he did this, her body arching under him, wanting more.

Chakotay could feel her body begin to shudder as she neared another orgasm and he knew he was close too.

Supporting himself on one arm, he slid his hand between their bodies and began to stroke the hard core of her pleasure, while his body thrust quicker and quicker.

Kathryn wrapped her legs around his waist and thrust her body up against his.

Suddenly her legs clamped around him and she screamed out his name as every muscle in her body tightened with the earth-shattering force of her release.

Chakotay groaned her name as her inner muscles closed like a vice around his throbbing member, drawing out a thunderous release that left him panting as he collapsed on her.

Kathrynís legs remained locked around his waist, keeping him inside her as they were besieged with torrential waves of pleasure.

Eventually the waves stopped buffeting them and they lay together, floating in a calm sea of sexual bliss.

With his breathing now under control, Chakotay lifted his head to look at her. She smiled up at him, a glazed, but happy look on her face.

"I love you." She whispered as she pulled him down for a soft kiss.

"I love you too." He said softly as he kissed her back.

She unwrapped her legs from his waist and allowed him to roll off her. She grabbed the sheet from the foot of the bed and snuggled up against him, covering them both.

She sighed happily and then started to giggle.

"What?"

"I was just thinking about what the crewís going to say when we get back and tell them weíre married."

Chakotay chuckled.

"Theyíll probably say itís about time."

They laughed.

Kathryn raised her head and looked at him.

"You know, this wedding ceremony and the one weíre having on Earth is only a formality." She paused. "As far as Iím concerned, weíre already married. Our hearts and souls married with our fist kiss."

Chakotay nodded.

"Yes. I know what you mean."

They gazed at each other, as no words were necessary. Everything they wanted or needed to say was apparent in their eyes.

Chakotay raised his right hand, fingers spread. Kathryn smiled and laced her left hand in his.

She kissed him tenderly and rested her head back on his chest.

They fell asleep, their bodies entwined just as their hands and hearts were.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Kathryn awoke the next morning to light kisses being rained on her face and soft caresses being feathered over her breasts.

Her eyes fluttered open and she sighed contentedly as Chakotayís lips claimed hers, kissing her fully awake.

He raised his head and smiled down at her.

"Good morning, beautiful." He said as he leaned over and kissed her again.

A low moan sounded in the back of her throat and she wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him closer.

Chakotay allowed her to pull his body on top of hers, their kiss deepening. His hands traveled down her sided and then slid underneath her as he rolled them over.

Kathryn broke off the kiss and smiled down at him as his hands now moved over her back and ass.

"So." She said, trying not to give in too quickly to the sensations his hands were creating. "When are we making this legal?"

He smiled up at her.

"This afternoon." He paused as he drew his finger up along her spine. "Care to get a head start on the honeymoon?"

She threw her head back and laughed. A deep throaty sound that was music to Chakotayís ears.

"Is that a yes?" He asked, laughter in his voice.

Kathryn smiled at him as she shifted her weight and with a thrust of her hips, she took his hard length inside her.

Chakotay groaned, his hands moving to her hips.

"Thatís definitely a yes." He said, voice husky.

"Definitely a yes." She agreed as she kissed him.

And then, sitting up on him, she began to move her body on him. Beginning yet another round of lovemaking.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Wow!" Kathryn sighed a few hours later as she sank between his legs into the hot water. "What a head start."

Chakotay chuckled as he wrapped his arms around her, holding her close.

"Glad you approve." He said kissing the top of her head a she leaned back against him.

"Oh yes! I most definitely approve." She agreed running her hands over his thighs. "Most definitely."

They soaked together in a comfortable silence, their hands, touching all over their bodies, their only source of conversation.

A while later, having taken turns washing each other, Kathryn pulled away from him and stood up.

Chakotay watched as the water cascaded off her body back into the tub. He ran his hand up her leg.

"I have an idea." He said, his voice husky.

She glanced down at him as she stepped out of the tub and began toweling off.

"Why donít we go into the village right now, get married really quick and then come back here and really start our honeymoon."

"And what about the Enterprise?" She asked as she wrapped the towel around her. "Sheíll be here in five hours."

He sighed as he stood and stepped out of the tub. He pulled her body against his.

"I guess we can wait until the Enterprise gets here."

Kathryn wrapped her arms around his neck and smiled at him.

"Yeah. I guess we can wait."

Chakotay chuckled again as he lowered his lips to hers, while walking her back towards the bedroom.

Kathryn squealed as they fell back on the bed. His hands moved between them and pulled her towel open.

"Chakotay!" She yelped. "Youíre all wet."

"Yes, I am." He grinned. "And I plan on getting wetter."

She saw the gleam in his eyes and felt a familiar ache begin to grow between her legs and flare up into her stomach. She put her hands on his chest to restrain him.

"Chakotay, we just got out of the bath and our wedding is due to start in an hour."

He buried his face in her neck and sighed.

"Okay. Youíre right."

He remained lying on top of her and began to nuzzle her neck.

"Chakotay!"

"Okay! Okay! You win." He conceded as he rolled off her.

She rewrapped the towel and stood up. She looked down at him, lying naked on the bed, his desire evident.

"Now come on, honey. You went almost ten years without sex. And for the last two and a half months, weíve made love constantly. A few more hours wonít kill you."

He opened his eyes and gave her a lopsided grin.

"Thatís what you think." He propped up on his elbows and looked at her. "If I donít make love to you as often as possible, I just might die."

Kathryn laughed.

"Iím serious." He said, the humor evident in his voice. "Just look at the condition youíre leaving me in."

"Oh you poor baby." She cooed as she leaned over him, her hair caressing his body. "Maybe you should go take a quick, cold shower."

"I can think of something else Iíd like to take quick at the moment."

She straightened up as she laughed.

"You can even use my towel." She said as she pulled it from her body and tossed it at him.

Chakotay pulled the towel from his face just in time to watch her naked body leave the bedroom. He groaned her name and sat up.

"Except for one meal with your cousin, Iím not letting you leave our quarters once weíre on the Enterprise."

"Promises. Promises." She called back with a laugh.

Chakotay chuckled as he began to dress, whistling happily.

=/\= =/\= =/\= =/\=

 

The sun shone high in the sky and a soft breeze blew over the gathered crowd.

Chakotay and Kathryn stood facing each other in front of the villagers, with their hands clasped.

They gazed deep into each otherís eyes, oblivious to everyone around them, barely hearing the words the village chief spoke over them that would join them forever as husband and wife.

"I canít believe this is actually happening." Thought Kathryn as she lost herself in Chakotayís obsidian eyes. "Weíre really getting married."

She squeezed his hands as her eyes filled with tears.

Chakotay felt his heart swell and smiled at her as he returned the squeeze.

"Itís finally happening." He thought happily. "All my hoped and dreams for the last decade are coming true."

As he drowned in the deep blue depths of her eyes, he couldnít stop the tears from falling down his cheeks.

They both turned towards the chief as they heard chuckles coming from the gathering.

Lauzon smiled as he repeated his question.

"Having heard what is required of a husband and a wife are you, Chakotay and Kathryn, ready to pledge your lives, the physical, emotional and spiritual to each other from this moment to forever.

Kathryn smiled up at Chakotay through her tears and felt him squeeze her hands again.

They answered in unison.

"Yes. We pledge our lives to each other. From this moment until forever.

Chief Lauzon placed his hands around theirs and addressed the assembled crowd.

"Chakotay and Kathryn have pledged their love to one another today in front of witnesses both physical and spiritual." He paused. "And so, with the blessings of the spirits and the exchanging of rings, I pronounce that they are joined."

Lauzon put his hands on their shoulders and turned them towards the smiling villagers.

"Meet Chakotay and Kathryn, husband and wife."

A loud whoop of joy went up from the village as Chakotay and Kathryn shared their first kiss as a married couple.

When they finally came up for air, they were being circled by the villagers, who were dancing with joy around them.

Kathryn beamed up at him.

"I love you, husband." She said, her voice choked with emotion, her tears now streaming down her cheeks.

Chakotay smiled down at her, his love for her glowing in his eyes.

"I love you too, wife."

They kissed again, eliciting another cheer from the crowd. They broke of their kiss and joined in the dancing.

A short while later, the newlyweds stood on the outer fringe of the still dancing villagers, watching with joy as the crowd continued to celebrate their wedding.

Kathryn stepped closer to Chakotay who snaked his arm around her waist, drawing her closer.

She stood on her tiptoes and as she went to kiss him on the cheek, something moving towards them caught her eye.

"Beverly?!" She exclaimed as the redhead embraced her. When they broke apart, Kathryn looked from Beverly to Jean-Luc to Chakotay. "Jean-Luc? What?"

"Your husband," Jean-Luc explained, ďcalled and invited us."

"As a surprise of course." Beverly said grinning happily and then embraced Kathryn again. "Oh, Kath, Iím so happy for you."

"Thank you, Beverly." Kathryn said as she stole a glance at Chakotay who grinned at her.

"Congratulations, Chakotay." Jean-Luc said extending his hand.

"Thank you ,Captain." Chakotay said.

"Please, call me Jean-Luc." He said. "After all, weíre family now."

Jean-Luc turned to Kathryn and embraced her as Beverly embraced Chakotay.

Back in her husbandís arms, Kathryn pressed a firm kiss on his lips.

"How? When?" She asked.

"Last night. After you fell asleep." He smiled. "I figured youíd like some family here for the ceremony."

"And a beautiful ceremony it was." Jean-Luc said.

"You were here for the whole thing?"

Beverly and Jean-Luc nodded.

"I donít believe this." Kathryn said and hugged Chakotay again. "Thank you so much."

"Anything to make you happy, my heart."

"Just being with you makes me happy."

Chakotay smiled and brought his lips down to hers for a gentle kiss.

Beverly moved into Jean-Lucís arms and they smiled at each other knowingly.

"Maybe we should give these two some privacy." Beverly said with a touch of humor.

Chakotay and Kathryn broke apart.

"No. Donít go." Kathryn said.

"Yes. Kathryn wants to get as much outside contact as possible while she still can."

Jean-Luc smiled and nodded.

"One dinner outside and then locking yourselves in your quarters for the whole trip home eh?"

Chakotay grinned.

"Howíd you know?"

"Beverly and I tried doing the same thing."

"You mean you tried." Beverly said jabbing him playfully in the ribs.

Jean-Lucís arms tightened around his wifeís waist.

"Well, do you blame me?"

Beverly wrapped her arms around him and turned her face up to his.

"No."

They kissed while Chakotay and Kathryn watched.

"Looks like weíre not the only ones who could use a little privacy."

Jean-Luc and Beverly broke apart and gave them a sheepish look.

They all laughed.

They talked some more and then joined the villagers for some more dancing.

A few hours later, Chakotay and Kathryn were being embraced by Skrinjaric and Tresham.

"Weíre going to miss you." Tresham said.

"Weíll miss you too." Kathryn said.

"Donít be strangers. This is your home, too." Skrinjaric said as he hugged Kathryn and then turned to Chakotay. "Congratulations, nephew. Take good care of her."

"I will." He said smiling. "Iíve waited for her for forever."

The two men embraced.

Chakotay and Kathryn grasped hands and took a step back.

"Chakotay to Enterprise. Two to beam up." He said as he slapped his communicator.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn lay back against her husband and sighed with content.

"Happy?" Chakotay asked softly.

"Mmhmm." Kathryn murmured. "Very happy."

They lay together on the couch, talking quietly while they watched the stars streak by.

"So, when do you want to have dinner with Beverly and Jean-Luc?" She asked.

"Tired of my company already?" He asked jokingly. "Weíve only been married a week."

She arched her head back to smile at him.

"Absolutely."

They laughed as Kathryn rolled over so that she was now lying face to face with him.

Chakotay ran his hands over her body, caressing her through the silk of her negligee.

"I love you." She sighed as she shivered from his touch and pressed her body tighter against his.

"Where do you want to make love now?" Chakotay asked with a glimmer in his eyes.

"You havenít answered my question yet." She said as she slowly slid off him.

Chakotay groaned and sat up. He watched her as she glided across the room. She slipped the straps of her nightie off her shoulders, allowing it to fall from her body.

She turned to smile at him.

"Well?"

Chakotay stood, his erection straining against his pants. He slowly made his way towards her, looking like a lion ready to pounce.

Kathryn backed away from him with a sensuous smile on her face until she came into contact with the desk.

Just then Chakotay pounced, pinning her between his body and the desk.

"Tomorrow night is fine." He said his voice growing husky. "That will give us time to recover from tonight."

She laughed happily as Chakotay dipped his head and ravaged her mouth with his.

He broke off the kiss and asked her breathlessly.

"So, where shall we make love?"

"Is there anywhere in here that we havenít made love?" She asked unbuttoning his pants.

Chakotay glanced around the room.

"Come to think of it, I donít believe there is."

"Then I guess weíll have to get creative." She said as she pushed his pants down.

"Want to try and sneak into a turbolift?" He asked, his eyes sparkling.

She gave him a mischievous smile.

"Oooh, that sounds like fun."

Chakotay stepped out of his pants and then dashed into their bedroom.

"Chakotay?"

"Here!" He said as he threw what she realized was her robe at her.

"Come on!" He said as he tied his robe. "Weíll make a made dash for the lift down the hall."

"Youíre crazy!" She laughed.

"Yes, I am. About you." He stopped and turned around to face her, untying his robe. "And besides, havenít you ever fantasized about making love in a turbolift?"

She smiled and felt her skin flush as she remembered all the times sheíd fantasized about making love to him in the lift on Voyager.

"Well?" He asked, suddenly standing right in front of her, his hands moving up her sides.

Kathryn looked up at him with a lush smile as she nodded.

"Yes. Iíve fantasized about making love to you, in the turbolift."

Chakotay grinned as he lifted her so that she was sitting on the desk. He kissed her softly, his lips barely touching hers.

Kathryn sighed as he deepened the kiss. She snaked her hands up around his neck, drawing him closer as her legs wound about his hips.

Chakotayís lips hers and moved along her jaw to close around her earlobe. He nibbled gently on the lobe, moving up to whisper little endearments in her ear.

Kathryn moaned as his mouth then closed around her nipple, his tongue swirling over it. She gasped suddenly when he brought his hands up to stroke her breasts, the sensations from his touch shooting right through her.

She lifted her hands to clutch at his head, but he grabbed them and held them at her sides.

He raised his head from her breast and smiled at her as he dropped to his knees in front of her. He released her hands and moved his hands behind her. He pulled her forward to that she was barely sitting on the desk.

His hands moved down her legs to clasp her ankles, lifting her legs up to rest on his shoulders.

Kathryn watched through lidded eyes as Chakotay moved forward. She shivered slightly as he released a warm breath over her already moist folds. She braces her arms on the desk just as he buried his nose and mouth against her.

"Doctor Picard to Captain Janeway."

Chakotay lifted his head to look at her.

"Janeway here. Go ahead, Beverly."

Chakotay gave her an almost evil grin as he returned his mouth to her nether-lips.

"Kath, Jean-Luc and I were wondering if you and Chakotay are ready to come for air and join us for dinner tomorrow?"

"Yes!" She exclaimed as Chakotayís tongue thrust inside her. She tried to concentrate on her conversation with Beverly. "Weíd love to."

"Great. Six oíclock, tomorrow night. Okay?"

Chakotay moved his head up and drew her sensitive clit into his mouth.

"Thatís FINE!" She exhaled as he nipped her gently with his teeth.

"Wonderful" Came Beverlyís laughter-tinged voice. "Well, Iíll let you get back to what you were doing. Picard out."

When the commline closed Kathryn looked down at her husband. He lifted his head and smiled at her.

"That wasnít funny, Chakotay." She said, trying hard not to smile.

"Oh yes it was." He replied as he resumed his previous activity.

Kathryn moaned and arched herself into him as he brought his hand up, sliding a finger inside her.

"CHAKOTAY!" She cried out as he continued to suck at her, his finger, now joined by a mate, continued to thrust into her. "Oh God, Chakotay!"

Chakotay felt her body begin to quiver as her inner muscles started to squeeze tighter around his finger.

With a final thrust of his fingers and a hard suck on the pearl of her desire, Kathryn came violently.

"CHAKOTAY!!" She cried out as her body convulsed. Her legs locked around his head and she arched into him.

A moment or two later, after having lapped up his reward, Chakotay lifted her legs off his shoulders and stood up.

Kathryn, having fallen back on the desk, looked up at him with a smile and then gasped as he leaned over her, sliding his hardness into her.

He grabbed her hands and placed them on his shoulders.

"Hold on, honey." He said hoarsely as his hands moved under her ass and he stood up.

Kathrynís legs wrapped around his waist as her arms went around his neck.

She moaned as he slowly made his way to the bedroom, a new sensation shooting through her body with each step he took.

When Chakotay got to the bed, he leaned on one knee and then lowered their bodies to the mattress.

"Time for round two." He said.

Kathryn laughed throatily and then moaned as they began to make love yet again.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Good morning."

Beverly looked up to see Kathryn standing in her office door.

"Good morning." Beverly said as she gestured for her to sit. "Chakotayís with Jean-Luc I take it?"

Kathryn nodded.

"Albeit reluctantly."

The two women laughed.

"Jean-Luc was the same way." Beverly said smiling. "But then again, so was I. I couldnít seem to get enough of him."

Kathryn nodded knowingly.

"Iím the same way with Chakotay."

"Iím still amazed that the two of you managed to make it for dinner last night."

"We almost didnít." Kathryn laughed.

"And now youíre here while heís off with Jean-Luc." Beverly paused. "Are you meeting him for lunch?"

Kathryn laughed.

"We talked about it." She paused and continued. "Actually, the reason I came down here and I canít believe Iím doing this voluntarily is... I was wondering if you could give me a check up."

"Why? Whatís wrong?" Beverly asked, instantly snapping into physician mode.

"Nothing really." Kathryn said. "Iím just feeling really tired."

"Well, you and Chakotay have been really busy these last couple of months."

Kathryn shot her a look.

"Itís not that. I feel almost achy. My breasts have become more sensitive. I mean when Chakotay touches them... wow, I almost go through the bulkhead."

"Okay." Beverly said standing up. "Come with me."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Youíre not serious." Kathryn said an hour later. "Tell me youíre not serious."

"Iím serious." Beverly said, smirking.

"But I canít be. Iím fifty-four years old for crying out loud."

"Kath, I ran the test twice."

"It canít be." She kept repeating.

"Should I ask Jean-Luc to bring Chakotay down?"

"No." Kathryn said. "In fact, think you could get him to keep him busy for a couple more hours?"

"Sure. What are you planning?"

"Just ask him to deliver Chakotay toÖ whereís your smallest holodeck?"

"Holodeck three. Deck four."

"Have Jean-Luc bring him there." Kathryn said.

Beverly tapped her commbadge.

"Doctor Picard to Captain Picard."

"Picard here."

"Jean-Luc, where are you?"

"Ten-Forward. Why?"

"Ask Guinan if you can use her office. I need to ask you something privately."

"Hold on a moment." A couple of minutes later. "Okay, Iím alone."

"I need you to keep Chakotay busy for a couple more hours."

"Not a problem. May I ask why?"

"Kathrynís planning a surprise for him. So bring him to Holodeck three in two hours."

"Okay. Iíll come up with some excuse to keep him occupied."

"Thank you, honey." She said.

"Thank me later." He said, the meaning clear in his voice. "Picard out."

Beverly smiled as the commline closed.

"You two have been married for how long?" Kathryn asked smiling.

"Seven years in two months."

"No seven year itch?"

Beverly hooked her arm through Kathrynís as she pulled her towards the door.

"Just the itch to spend as much time alone together as possible."

The two women laughed as they left sickbay.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"This is beautiful, Kath." Beverly said looking around. "Where is it?"

"A planet out in the Delta Quadrant." Kathryn replied with a smile on her face. "We named it New Earth."

"And you two spent six months here?"

Kathryn nodded.

"And nothing happened between the two of you?"

Kathryn shook her head.

"Well, I wouldnít say nothing." Kathryn said. "It was during this time that we really grew closer. And if Voyager hadnít come back when they did, we would have become lovers sooner."

"But, if Voyager hadnít rescued you, you wouldnít be here."

"Thatís very true." Kathryn said. "And I am very glad to be home. But seeing this makes me miss the peace of the place."

"Surely youíve run this program before?"

Kathryn shook her head.

"This is the first time since New Earth."

"So why now?

"Because this is where Chakotay first expressed his feelings for me." She paused and smiled at her cousin. "It seems appropriate."

Beverly returned her smile, her understanding in her eyes.

"So is everything ready?" Beverly asked.

"Just waiting for Guinan to bring the food."

 

=/\= Bree-oop =/\=

 

"That must be her now." Beverly said and called out. "Is that you, Guinan?"

"Yes." Came the reply.

"Computer, release and open doors."

The doors slid open and Guinan walked in pushing a lev-cart laden with food.

"Now, since Iím supplying all the goodies, do I get to be in on the secret?"

"I promise youíll be the first one to know." Kathryn said. "After my husband."

Guinan nodded as she regarded the two women.

"I understand."

She gave them a smile and then turned and left.

"Sheís an interesting person." Kathryn said.

"Yes. She is that." Beverly said and then clapped her hands. "So..."

"So, letís get the food in the shelter and then I need to get ready."

Together they pushed the cart into the shelter.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Thank you again, Chakotay, for being so patient and tagging along." Jean-Luc was saying, leading him down the corridor. "Iím just sorry I made you miss your lunch with Kathryn. I hope she wonít be angry."

"Well I didnít call her to let her know I was going to be late so... I donít know." He paused. "Although, I have noticed that sheís been really tired lately. Maybe she fell asleep and hasnít noticed."

"Maybe." Picard said, inwardly smiling.

Chakotay looked around and realized he didnít know what deck he was on.

"What deck are we on?"

"Deck four."

"Whatís on this deck?"

"Crew quarters. Library and Holodeck three." Picard answered and stopped as he came to the Holodeck. "And this is our next stop."

"The Holodeck?"

Just then the doors parted and Beverly walked through them.

"Your presence has been requested inside, Chakotay." She said.

He gave her a look.

"I donít understand."

Beverly moved behind him and pushed him towards the open door.

"You will when youíre inside." She said giving him a final shove. "Now go on."

Chakotay shrugged his shoulders and entered the rest of the way. The doors closed behind him.

"So." Asked Jean-Luc, wrapping his arm around his wifeís waist. "Whatís the big surprise?"

Beverly smiled up at him as her arm went around him and they made their way to the turbolift.

"Kathrynís pregnant." Beverly said as they entered the lift and called out their destinations. She turned in his arms and wrapped both of her arms around his neck. "Isnít that wonderful?"

"Yes it is." Jean-Luc said and an image of Beverly swollen with his child flashed in his mind. "Computer, halt lift."

Jean-Luc smiled down at her.

"Have I ever told you how often Iíve dreamed about making love to you here in the turbolift?"

A slow, sensuous smile came to Beverlyís lips as her hands moved to the fastening of his uniform.

"So how about showing me instead of telling me." She said huskily.

Jean-Luc grinned as he quickly undid her uniform top. He reached behind and unsnapped her bra, masterfully removing it.

Beverly ran her hands down his well-muscled chest to the waistband of his pants.

"You know, we shouldnít be doing this." She said moaning as his mouth captured one of her nipples.

He released her breast and kissed his way up to her mouth.

"Guess it will have to be a quickie then." He said as he broke off the kiss and quickly yanked off her pants.

She gasped at the suddenness of his actions and then groaned as his fingers brushed the auburn curls between her thighs.

"Oh yes!" She moaned, feeling an incredible ache begin. Her hands pushed his pants down to his knees, freeing his very large, noticeably throbbing erect manhood.

She wrapped her hand around him, stroking gently.

"Oh yes." She said again "Oh yes, make it quick. Please."

Jean-Luc smiled at his wife, seeing the blatant desire swim in her eyes. He grabbed her waist and lifted her into the air.

"As you wish, my love." He said huskily.

Their eyes locked as he impaled her onto his rigid staff.

"Oh God, Jean-Luc!" She cried out, wrapping her legs around his waist.

Jean-Luc moved her back against the lift wall and thrust into her. Their moans mingled as Beverly rolled her hips against him.

Their bodies thrashed against each other, neither one holding anything back. Jean-Luc slipped his hand between them and began to stroke the pearl of her desire, quickening her release.

Beverly started panting his name as her body started to shake with her orgasm.

"JEAN-LUC!" She screamed as the sensations turned in on themselves and then exploded from the center of her being.

Jean-Luc felt her body stiffen and her legs tighten as he drove himself deep within her for a final time.

Her inner muscles clamped around his throbbing member, pulling his release from him with a groan.

They sank to the floor of the lift; their bodies still joined.

Beverly lifted her head and smiled down at him.

"For a wham-bamm, thank you maíam, that was pretty incredible." She said.

Jean-Luc laughed.

"Wham-bamm, thank you maíam? Where ever did you hear that?"

"Back on Earth when we meet Cochrane." She chuckled. "Itís another name for a quickie."

Jean-Luc smiled.

"I like it."

Beverly sighed.

"Well, as much as Iíd like to stay like this." She indicated the position they were in. "I think we should get dressed."

"Yes, I suppose youíre right." He said as he kissed her quickly.

They stood and hurriedly fixed their uniforms. When they looked presentable, Jean-Luc called for the lift to resume.

"Think anyone will figure out what we were up to?" Beverly asked.

Jean-Luc nodded.

"Yes, but you know what? I donít really care."

Beverly laughed.

"I do have a suggestion though." He said.

"And that is?"

"We head straight back to our quarters and continue where we left off."

Beverly arched an eyebrow at him as her smile grew.

"Excellent suggestion." She said grabbing his hand. "Excellent suggestion indeed."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Chakotay looked back as the holodeck doors closed and then turned his attention towards the path in the trees, his curiosity piqued.

As he moved further along, it suddenly dawned on him where he was.

"New Earth." He said aloud, a smile coming to his face.

Moments later, as he knew it would, he came upon the shelter.

"Kathryn!?" He called, knowing she was here and responsible for the program.

"Over here, Chakotay."

He walked around the shelter and his smile grew.

"Care to join me?" She asked, languishing in the tub heíd built for her.

"I donít recall having made the tub big enough for two." He said, removing his clothes.

"Iíve taken a little creative license with the program." She admitted as he sank into the water in front of her.

"I didnít know youíd taken a holo-vid of this." He said. "When did you do it?"

"After Tuvok contacted us and while you were packing." She said moving closer to him. "This is the first time Iíve ever run it."

"Really?" He asked and she nodded. "Why now?"

"It seemed appropriate for what Iíve got to tell you." She said, sliding her legs around him.

"What you have to tell me?"

"Mmhmm." She murmured, wrapping her arms around his neck.

His arms slid around her waist as he waited for her to continue.

"Iím pregnant." She said softly.

She watched his face as he registered the news and her smile grew with each flash of emotion.

"YouíreÖ"

"Pregnant." She finished and nodded. "Yes."

"Pregnant!" He repeated, a huge grin forming on his face. "Youíre sure?"

She nodded.

"Youíre pregnant, with my child." His eyes filled with tears as he slipped a hand between them to rest on her abdomen. "Weíre having a baby?"

Again she nodded, her eyes filled with tears also.

"Weíre having a baby!" He cried out happily and pulled her tight against him.

He lowered his lips to hers in the gentlest yet erotic kiss Kathryn had ever received.

"I take it then, that youíre happy about this?" She asked when they finished kissing.

"No." He answered. "Iím beyond happy. Iím thrilled, excited, overjoyed, elated, ecstaticÖ"

"I get the picture." She laughed.

He gazed at her, his love pouring out from his eyes.

"I never thought I could love you anymore than I already do. But I was wrong." He said, his voice choking with emotion. "It seems everyday I fall in love with you all over again."

"Oh, Chakotay." She sighed.

He looked around at New Earth again.

"You were right." He said. "This is the appropriate place to tell me. After all this is where our relationship took a step forward. Where we both acknowledged that there was something between us."

"Thatís exactly why I chose it."

"Well my beautiful wife." He said sliding his hands under bottom and standing. "How about I take you into the house and show you what I wanted to do to you all those years ago?"

She tightened her legs and arms around him and kissed him soundly.

"Show away, husband of mine."

Chakotay grinned and stepped out of the tub. He made his way inside the shelter and stopped suddenly.

"I donít remember a king-size bed being here." He said, approval in his voice.

"Creative license." They said together and laughed.

Chakotay walked over to the bed and sat down. He reached up and caressed her face.

"I love you, Kathryn." He said softly. "I always have and I always will. Nothing or no one can ever change that."

"I love you too, Chakotay. With all that I am, I love you."

Kathryn lowered her lips to his in a kiss that quickly grew stormy with passion.

"Let me show you how much." She murmured against his lips.

"Me first." He said falling back on the bed and then rolled over on top of her.

They then began a slow and exquisitely pleasurable worship of each otherís bodies that would last for hours.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn smiled as she watched her mother embrace Chakotay.

"Iím so glad youíre finally home." Gretchen said to Kathryn as she let Chakotay go. "And Iím very happy to finally meet you, Chakotay. Iíve heard a lot about you."

"The same goes for me, Mrs. Janeway." Chakotay said. "Kathrynís spoken of you quite often over the years."

"Not all bad I hope." Gretchen laughed.

"Not all." Chakotay laughed with her.

"Thatís good. And please, Chakotay, call me Gretchen."

Chakotay nodded.

"Well, itís about time you returned!"

Everyone turned around to see phoebe standing in the door with a huge grin on her face.

"We were beginning to wonder if it would be another ten years till we saw you again." Phoebe said walking towards Kathryn.

"We were considering it." Kathryn said as she embraced her sister.

When they broke apart, phoebe turned to Chakotay.

"So, youíre the one my older sisterís crazy about?"

"Phoebe!" Exclaimed Gretchen. "Is that anyway to greet a guest?"

Phoebe continued as if she hadnít heard her mother, putting out her hand.

"Itís nice to meet you."

Chakotay took her hand and shook it.

"The pleasureís all mine." Chakotay said. "And to answer your question. Yes. Iím the one whoís crazy about your sister."

"And heís the one Iím crazy about." Kathryn said, wrapping her arms around him. "So crazy in fact that I married him."

"You what?!" Cried Gretchen.

"We got married."

"Thatís wonderful." Gretchen said. "Although, it would have been nice to have been there. But I suppose I can console myself by throwing you a huge reception."

"Letís see the ring." Phoebe said, reaching for Kathrynís hand. "Oh itís beautiful. You have good taste, Chakotay."

"I know. I married your sister didnít I?" He smiled.

Kathryn grinned up at him and gave him a squeeze. He smiled down at her as he placed a quick kiss on her lips.

"Well letís sit down and have some coffee." Gretchen said.

"Actually, some tea would be lovely." Kathryn said as she sat down.

Phoebe and Gretchen both turned to look at her open-mouthed.

"You donít want any coffee?" Phoebe asked. "Are you feeling okay?"

"I feel great." Kathryn said, glancing at Chakotay. "Iíd just like some tea, thatís all."

"Okay." Gretchen said. "Phoebe, come help me."

"Yes mother." Phoebe said following her mother into the kitchen.

When they were out of earshot, Kathryn turned to Chakotay.

"So, when do we tell them?"

"Not too soon." He replied grinning. "I enjoyed watching their faces when you turned down the coffee."

"Oh coffee!" She said looking like a lost puppy. "Donít remind me."

"You can do it, Kathryn. Itís only for seven more months." He said. "Besides, Beverly said one cup a day would be okay."

She sighed and leaned against him, her hands entwining with his.

"I think we should wait until the reception to tell them. This way weíll only have to announce it once."

"Thatís what I was thinking." He said wrapping his around her shoulder and sitting back. His other hand came up and tilted her face up to him. "I know I told you this morning, but I love you."

She smiled and couldnít stop the slight blush that crept up her face.

"I love you too."

He lowered his lips to hers in a gentle but firm kiss.

"Okay you two, break it up." Came phoebeís voice. "Honeymoonís over."

"Our honeymoon will never be over." Kathryn said, gazing lovingly at Chakotay.

"A-men to that." He said.

Gretchen sat in the chair and began pouring the tea.

"So now that youíre both here and wonít be going anywhere for at least a week, tell us all about your Delta Quadrant experience."

Kathryn took her cup from her mother and with a glance at Chakotay, began to regale them with ten years worth of adventures.

 

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"So does anyone know what the Captain wants to tell us?" Asked Harry Kim.

"BíElanna and I were talking about that." Tom said. "We think she and Commander Chakotay eloped."

"I cannot see the Captain eloping." Seven said. "Yes, she acted impulsively by leaving Earth so quickly. However it has not been confirmed that she went after the Commander."

"Oh, Seven, whereís your romantic side?" Chided Neelix. "Besides, why else would the Captainís mother, sister and friends be here?"

"Looks like our questions are about to be answered." Harry said. "Look who just walked in."

They all turned to see Captain Janeway enter the room on Chakotayís arm. The senior officers moved towards them.

"Welcome home, Captain." Neelix said. "You too, Commander."

"Thank you , Neelix." Chakotay said.

"So whatís the surprise?" Asked Tom.

"What surprise?" Asked Kathryn nonchalantly. "Canít we just throw a party before we ship out?"

"IÖ uhÖ suppose so." Tom stammered. "But on the invitation, it said you had something to tell us and we all figured that you two eloped."

Kathryn and Chakotay glanced at each other and smiled.

"Why would we elope?" Chakotay asked.

"Well the Captain did go after you and she obviously brought you back." BíElanna said.

"Who said I went after him?" Kathryn asked.

"Well after the way you ran out of the ball and were off the planet so quickly without a word." Neelix began.

"We all put it together and figured that youíd gone after the Commander." Harry finished.

"And you were gone for two and a half months. And then this party and the two of you walking in here arm in arm." Tom said.

"Weíve come to parties together before." Kathryn said. "Anyway, whoís to say I didnít just run into Chakotay outside."

"Both you and Commander Chakotay arrived back on Earth via the Enterprise a week ago."

Everyone turned to see Tuvok standing before them, his wife at his side.

"How do you know that, Tuvok?" Chakotay asked.

"Simple. I checked." Tuvok replied.

Kathryn glanced up at Chakotay who nodded slightly.

"You sure know how to ruin a good joke, Tuvok." Kathryn quipped.

Tuvok arched an eyebrow at her as Chakotay called for everyoneís attention.

"First of all." Chakotay began. "Kathryn and I would like to thank all of you for coming tonight." He paused. "We know youíre all curious and so we wonít keep you in suspense any longer."

He smiled down at Kathryn.

"Three weeks ago, on my home planet, Kathryn and I were married in a traditional Indian ceremony."

A loud cheer went up from the crowd.

"I told you!" Tom commented.

"They didnít elope." BíElanna said. "They had a normal ceremony."

"They got married without telling anyone." Tom said. "In my book thatís eloping."

Chakotay motioned for everyone to quiet down.

"We have another announcement." He said and motioned to his wife.

"Not only are we married." Kathryn began, "But weíre also expecting a baby."

This brought an even louder cheer and applause from the crowd. Kathrynís mom threw her arms around her daughter in a fierce hug.

"Iím going to be a grandmother!" She said excitedly as Kathryn nodded. "I wish your father were here. Heíd be thrilled."

Kathryn smiled.

"Heís here in spirit."

"Youíre absolutely right." Gretchen said dabbing her eyes.

She moved aside to let the others offer their congratulations.

Later that evening, Kathryn and Chakotay were on the dance floor, their arms around each other, barely moving but swaying to the music.

"Happy?" Chakotay asked softly against her ear.

Kathrynís response was to tighten her arms around him as she looked up into his face.

"I am beyond happy." She said echoing the words he used when she told him about the baby. "Iím in the arms of the man Iíve loved for as long as I can remember. Iím married to him and carrying his child. I am extremely blissful."

Chakotay smiled down at her as he lowered his lips to hers in a slow burning kiss. As they continued to kiss they became aware of a loud sound coming from all around them.

They broke off the kiss and looked up to see everyone standing around and applauding. They grinned and pulled each other close as they resumed dancing.

A short while later, Chakotay whispered in her ear again.

"I know this party is for us, but do you think weíd be able to slip out?"

"We probably could. Why?" She whispered back.

"Iíve got a surprise for my gorgeous wife."

Kathrynís smile grew.

"Well in that case, why donít we start dancing our way to the door."

Chakotay nodded and slowly maneuvered them across the dance floor.

"Would you look at that." Tom said to his wife.

"What?" BíElanna asked.

"That." Tom pointed to Kathryn and Chakotay. "Theyíre trying to sneak out of their own party. Think we should stop them?"

BíElanna shook her head.

"Nah. Let them go. After all it took them forever to finally get together and they are still on the honeymoon stage."

Tom wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her closer.

"Maybe we should follow their lead."

BíElanna smiled.

"I thought youíd never ask." She laughed. "But letís keep the attention off the newlyweds and say goodbye to everyone."

"Good idea." Tom said.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"So." Kathryn began. "Now that weíve snuck out of our own party. Whatís my surprise?"

"Patience, my love." He said. "First things first."

He pulled out a long scarf.

"Whatís that for?"

"This." He said moving behind her and slipping the scarf over her eyes. "First you have to be blindfolded."

"Oh, Chakotay! Why?"

"Just humor me." He said tying it behind her head. "I promise, youíre gonna love it."

"Okay. Just for you." She smiled.

"Thank you." He said laughter in his voice and continued while he moved back in front of her. "Now hold to me."

"With pleasure." She purred, wrapping her arms around his waist, her one hand trailing down to cup his crotch.

"Behave yourself!" He hissed with pleasure.

Kathryn laughed and moved her hand back up as he began to walk.

Twenty minutes later, after entering a building and climbing a couple of steps, Kathryn felt Chakotay stop and extricate himself from her arms.

"Is everything ready?" She heard him ask.

"Yes, sir." Came a voice Kathryn couldnít place.

"Get ready to be transported." Chakotay told her.

"Can I take the blindfold off now?"

"Nope. Just another couple minutes." He told her as he nodded to the transporter operator.

Kathryn felt the familiar sensation of the transporter beam take her. She jumped slightly when Chakotay grabbed her hand.

"Come with me." He said, leading her through a door.

"Chakotay, where are we?" She asked, sensing that she was some place familiar.

"Only a couple more seconds." He said, helping her up a step. He turned her body, positioning her. He then moved behind her, his hands moving up to the scarf. He untied it.

"Surprise." He said softly, letting the scarf slide down her face.

"Oh, Chakotay." She sighed and turned her head to smile at him. "Chakotay."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Kathryn looked around at their surroundings.

They were on Voyagerís bridge. It was dark and there were dozens of lit candles burning everywhere. On the floor, in front of her command chair, a blanket had been laid out. Beside it stood two wine glasses and a bottle ofÖ

"Sparkling apple cider." He said softly, answering her unasked question.

She turned to face him, unshed tears glistening in her eyes.

"How? When?" She asked, wrapping her arms around his neck.

Chakotayís arms slid around her waist.

"Well, I talked to Admiral Hogestyn as soon as we got back." He said. "And, as for all of this, well, I did that earlier today when you were off shopping with your mother and sister." He paused and pressed a quick kiss to her lips. "And then I enlisted the help of an ensign who was very willing to help his commanding officer, to come up here moments before us to light the candles."

Kathryn shook her head as her hands stroked the hair at the base of his neck.

"This is wonderful." She said and then moved her hand to caress his cheek. "And you are wonderful."

She smiled lovingly up at him.

"I love you so much, Chakotay." She sighed. "So much so that it scares me sometime."

"Scares you?"

Kathryn nodded.

"Yes. It scares me. I have never loved anyone with the depth and the passion that I love you." She placed a kiss against his neck as she moved closer against him. "I think thatís part of the reason I kept my distance from you for so long."

Chakotay cupped her face in his hands and gazed down at her.

"And now?" He asked softly.

"And now," she smiled. "I want to be with you every minute of everyday. I never want us to be apart."

"Iíll do my best to see that happens." He said.

"Be sure that you do, Commander." She simpered.

He saluted her.

"Yes, maíam!"

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Has anyone seen my daughter and son-in-law?" Gretchen asked of her daughterís senior officers.

Harry shook his head.

"I saw them dancing just a little bit ago. Tom?"

Tom glanced at BíElanna, his eyes asking if he should say anything. She shrugged.

"WellÖ uhÖ IÖ uhÖ" he stammered. "I mean, we, saw them earlier dancing towards the garden."

BíElanna smiled.

"You know newlyweds. Always wanting to be alone."

That brought a smile to everyoneís face.

Smiling, Gretchen shook her head. "I just came from the garden. No sign of them."

"Maybe they snuck off." Neelix suggested.

"Kathryn wouldnít do that." Phoebe said. "Not from her own party."

"You donít know Chakotay." BíElanna said. "He can be very persuasive."

"Okay. Say they did sneak out of here." Harry said. "Whereíd they sneak off too?"

"Voyager?" Neelix suggested.

Everyone looked at each other, considering the possibility.

"Nah!" They all chorused.

"Itís in Spacedock." Harry pointed out. "There are technician crawling all over it."

"True." Said Neelix. "Thereís got to be someplace that someone knows of, where theyíd go to be alone."

"Okay. Think people." Tom said.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"I still canít believe you did this." Kathryn said, sipping her apple cider as she lay back in her husbandís arms. "All of this for me."

"Well I know how much you miss your ship." Chakotay said. "And this is only the beginning."

"What?" She sat up and looked at him. "What do you mean?"

He smiled.

"This is only the first of many surprises I have planned for you."

She shook her head, smiling at him.

"Youíre incorrigible." She laughed.

"Only where you and this little one are concerned." He said, placing his hand on her belly.

They gazed at each other, their love for each other obvious in their eyes.

Kathryn put down her glass and stood up. She wandered around the bridge as Chakotay watched.

"I have missed our ship." She said running her hands over the consoles. "But not as much as I thought I would."

Chakotay put his glass down.

"Really?"

"Mmhmm." She smiled as she slowly moved back to him. "I was kept very occupied and had little time to miss it."

Chakotay stood up as she walked over to him.

"You donít say."

"Have I ever told you of my fantasy of making love to you on the bridge?" She asked him, slowly beginning to undo her blouse.

Chakotay felt himself start to grow hard and pulled his top off over his head.

"Did you have a particular spot in mind?"

"Oh yes." She purred, her blouse slipping off her shoulders. "I most certainly do."

"And where might that be?" He asked, dropping his shirt and moving to undo his pants.

"Just you wait." She said, moving to him and helping him undo and remove his pants. Kathryn stepped back and whistled softly, a smile on her face.

Chakotay stood before his wife, unashamedly naked, his erection standing tall and hard from the nest of dark curls.

"You have such a magnificent body." She said, her voice husky. She stepped out of her skirt and glided towards him. "A truly magnificent body. I am a lucky woman."

Chakotay stretched out his hands and caught her by the shoulders, holding her in place.

"Hold on." He said. "My turn."

Kathryn smiled as his gaze swept over her body. Her smile grew when his eyes rested for a few moments on her belly, where very little showed of her condition.

"Scientists were wrong." He murmured. "There is a God. How else can your beauty be explained."

"Chakotay!" She sighed.

"Iím serious." He said. "You are the most beautiful woman in the universe."

Kathryn took a step towards him and placed her hands on his shoulders. She leaned in and kissed him.

"Ready to find out where on the bridge Iíve dreamed of making love to you?" She asked.

"Oh yes." He nodded.

She smiled and gave him a little shove. He took a couple steps backwards and fell back into the captainís chair.

Kathryn straddled his legs.

"Any guesses?"

"I think Iíve figured it out." He said, his hands moving to her waist. "Great spot."

Kathryn grinned at him as she allowed him to lift her hips.

"Engage!" She commanded.

"Yes, maíam!" He replied pulling her down, impaling her on his rigid shaft.

They moaned together.

Kathrynís hands squeezed his shoulders as she began to lift and lower her hips, riding him.

Chakotay gazed up at his wife and felt his heart swell with love even as he felt his member surge with desire deep within his wifeís hot center.

Kathrynís head fell back and she moaned as she felt his mouth envelope one of her breasts, his tongue swirling over the taut nipple.

Chakotay sat up, wrapped his arms around his wife and held her close as he buried his face in her breasts.

Kathryn wrapped her arms around his head as she felt him thrust up into her.

Chakotay moved his hands up and down her back and then slid one between their bodies to stroke her.

She moaned and ground her hips against him, her fingers entangling in his hair, holding his face against her.

Chakotay moved his hands up and clasped her face between them. He pulled his head back and brought her face down to his for a scorching kiss.

Suddenly Kathrynís body began to convulse and thrash against him

"Oh, God, Chakotay!" She screamed as she was battered with the incredible sensations of her orgasm.

"Kathryn." He moaned as he felt himself explode within her.

She collapsed against him in an exhausted heap as he sagged back in the chair.

A few moments later, she lifted her head and smiled dreamily at him.

"Well, that definitely lived up to all my fantasies." She said, her voice still husky with passion.

"Iím glad." He smiled and caressed her back. "It lived up to mine as well." He cupped her face then and grinned at her. "Although I have fantasized about making love to you on every inch of the bridge."

"Every inch?" She raised an eyebrow.

"Oh yes." He said. "Every console, each chairÖ"

Kathryn laughed.

"The floor, too, I presume."

Chakotay nodded.

"Absolutely. I told you every inch."

Kathryn snuggled back against him with a contented sigh.

"How long do we have the ship to ourselves?" She asked, pressing kisses against his neck.

"All night." He answered.

"Well thenÖ" she began, sitting up on him, her fingers tracing lines on his chest and her inner muscles clenching around his slowly hardening member.ďWhat do you say we move to a new spot and see about fulfilling your fantasies?Ē

Chakotay ran his fingers up her arms, along her jaw and down her throat to her breasts. Kathryn shivered as he traced ever-smaller growing circles around each breast and when he came to the nipple he leaned in and kissed each one.

"That sounds wonderful." He said his voice low. "But I have other plans for us."

He grabbed her waist and lifted her off of him as he stood them up.

"Chakotay!" She exclaimed.

He grinned and walked around her. She sat in her chair and watched Chakotayís naked body move around the bridge, blowing out candles.

"Computer." Chakotay called out. "Lights. Lowest illumination."

The bridge was instantly filled with a soft light as he finished blowing out the candles.

Kathryn reclined in her chair, kicking her legs over the arm. She continued to watch him, a soft smile on her lips.

Chakotay gathered up the candles, wineglasses and cider and placed them in the wicker basket on his chair. He grabbed the blanket and began to fold it.

"So, whatís my next surprise?" She asked.

Chakotay glanced over at her and smiled. He placed the folded blanket at the foot of her chair and dropped to his knees in front of her.

He ran his hand down her thigh and rested it on her belly. He rubbed in slight circles, communing with the life she carried.

Kathryn lifted her hand to his cheek while covering his hand on her belly with the other one.

They gazed at each other with tears in their eyes.

Chakotay smiled at her.

"I love you." He said softly.

"I love you too." She replied equally as soft.

"Ready for your next surprise?" He asked.

"Mmhmm." She murmured.

He smiled at her and stood. He extended his hand to her and helped her up. He bent over and picked up her clothes.

"Here. Put these back on."

"You mean I have to get dressed again?" She asked. "Why?"

"So I can strip you down all over again." He said slyly, slipping into his pants.

Kathryn laughed and began to dress.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Kathryn!" Gretchen called out, entering the house. "Chakotay! Are you here?"

Gretchen and phoebe looked at each other.

"I guess theyíre not here either." Phoebe said.

"I wonder where they went." Gretchen said.

"You donít think they actually went up to Voyager?" Phoebe asked.

"Kathryn is the shipís captain."

Just then the flashing light of a waiting message on the comm-moniter caught their attention. The two women walked over and turned it on.

Chakotayís face appeared.

"Itís a recorded message." Gretchen said as she activated it.

"Hello, Gretchen. Phoebe." Chakotayís image said. "I just wanted to apologize for sneaking out of our reception, but I have a surprise for Kathryn. So please donít worry. Weíll see you tomorrow."

The message ended and his image faded.

"Well that still doesnít tell us where they went." Gretchen said.

"Oh, mom, quit worrying." Phoebe said. "Let them enjoy themselves. In just a few months, they wonít be able to sneak around like a couple of teenagers."

Gretchen nodded.

"He could have at least told us of his plans."

Phoebe laughed.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"So, do you think Neelix was right?" BíElanna asked her husband as she crawled into bed beside him.

Tom smiled and nodded.

"Yep. I think Voyager is exactly where Chakotay took her." Tom said. "After all, you know how much the Captain loves her ship."

"Yes. Thatís true. But what about all the repair crews?"

"Well if I know Chakotay." Tom grinned. "He found a way to get rid of the crews."

BíElanna rolled on top of her husband and smiled down at him.

"And I bet theyíre not just admiring the refit."

Tom reached his hands up and pulled her down on him.

"I bet youíre right."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Chakotay grabbed the wicker basket and headed for her ready room.

"Wait here." He said.

Moments later he returned, sans basket.

"Are you ready?" He asked offering her his arm.

"More than ready." She answered, taking his arm.

Chakotay led her into the lift and when the lift doors shut she turned to face him.

"So when are you going to tell me what my next surprise is?"

Chakotay just gave her a look.

"Computer. Recognize Chakotay, Commander. Authorization Zeta Pi one one four. Initiate turbolift program Chakotay One."

The lift began to move and chatty wrapped his arms around Kathrynís waist.

"Remember that night on the Enterprise?" He asked.

Kathryn nodded with a smile.

"Your suggestion that we sneak into a turbolift and make love."

"Well we donít have to sneak around." He said slowly inching up her skirt.

Kathryn shook her head as she moved her hands between them and began to undo his pants.

"And we have no worries about getting caught." She said, pushing his pants down off his hips, freeing his hard, pulsing member.

Chakotay held her skirt at her waist and hoisted her into the air.

"How right you are, my love."

He slowly lowered her onto his rock hard member and took a step forward, pinning her against the lift wall.

Their eyes locked as Chakotay thrust up into her. Kathryn wrapped her legs round his hips with a cry of pleasure as Chakotay moaned and drove his body into hers.

As the turbolift moved through the ship, Kathryn and Chakotay made love to each other with reckless abandon.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Do you really think we should be doing this?" Neelix asked.

"Quit worrying, Neelix." Harry said. "Weíre just going to see the ship, thatís all."

"But what if the Captain and Commander are on it?" Neelix asked. "They obviously wanted to be alone and didnít want anyone to know where they were going."

"Who said anything about looking for the Captain and Commander?" Harry said. "I just want to see Voyager. See how the repairs are coming along."

"Sure, Mr. Kim." The Doctor said. "Youíre as morbidly curious as the rest of us."

Harry smiled sheepishly.

"Okay. So Iím curious." He paused. "But if it will make you feel better, we woní go aboard her."

"Then how ill we know for certain?" Asked Seven standing beside the Doctor.

Harry suddenly moved into an observation room and gestured to the window. There before them, in Spacedock, hung Voyager.

"We let Voyager tell us." Harry said.

"How?" Asked the Doctor.

"Well." Harry said, staring at the ship. He pointed. "There. See the bridge lights are on."

"So." Said Neelix.

"That technician we talked to back there said that all the work crews had been given the night off." Harry explained. "And that means that no one should be on the ship."

"Thus there should be no lights on, on Voyager." Seven finished.

"Exactly." Harry said.

"Maybe the crews just forgot to turn them off." Offered the Doctor.

Harry considered this as he stared at the ship. Suddenly a huge smile crept to his features.

"Now do you believe me?" He asked pointing to a different spot on the ship.

They all nodded.

"I never knew Chakotay was so romantic." Commented Neelix.

The four smiled at each other and then turned away from the window and the view of Voyager with lights on in two separate windows.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Chakotay held his wifeís hands as he led her down the corridor.

"Well I know where weíre going now." She said. "Is this part of my surprise?"

He nodded.

Kathryn grinned.

"But how can it be a surprise if I know where weíre going?"

"Just wait and see." He told her.

Moments later, they arrived at their destination.

Kathryn gave a squeal of pleasure as she was scooped up into his arms. He motioned to the door with his head.

"Would you key the lock?" He said which she did.

"Chakotay." She sighed.

"Ah. Tradition demands that I carry my bride over the threshold of our home."

"Who am I to stand in the way of tradition?" She laughed. "Carry away."

Chakotay smiled and took a step forward, the doors parting for him.

Once inside, Kathryn gasped as the lights came on.

"Oh, Chakotay!"

"Do you like it?"

"I love it!" She said giving him a kiss.

Still kissing her, Chakotay let her down so that she was standing in front of him.

Kathryn broke off the kiss and turned in his arms.

"When?" She asked.

"That first night on Dorvan V when you told me you loved me." He said. "I woke up very early and sent a message to Admiral Hogestyn asking him to do this, as by the time we returned, weíd be married."

"That sure were you?" She asked chuckling.

"Mmhmm." He murmured nuzzling her neck.

Kathryn surveyed her, correction, she told herself, their quarters.

The repair crews had knocked down the wall separating their two cabins and had turned them into one huge living area.

Kathryn moved out of his arms and circled the room.

"Itís wonderful." She said holding her arms out. "All of this is simply wonderful."

"Iím glad you like it." He said. "Theyíve even enlarged the bedroom and bathroom."

She cocked an eyebrow at him.

"Oh really?"

"Yes." He smiled. "Care to check it out?"

She grinned and headed towards the other rooms. Chakotay watched her go and a huge smile broke out on his face when he heard her reaction.

"Oh my lord!"

"I take it you approve?" He called out, moving to join her in the bathroom.

She looked up at him as he entered the room, a dreamy smile on her face.

"I approve." She nodded. "Wherever did they get such a large tub and howídÖ?" She paused. "Youíre incredible."

She stepped over to him and wrapped her arms around his waist.

"This is all so wonderful." She said, tears in her eyes. "I canít believe you did all this."

"Well, technicallyÖ" he began.

"It was your idea." She interrupted. "You sent the message and made it happen."

"Actually, the idea for the tub hit me when we were on the Enterprise." He smiled. "I suddenly remembered how small the tubs were on Voyager."

A huge smile spread across her face.

"And how much we adore taking baths together."

"There was that too." He grinned.

She stepped out of his arms and closer to the tub.

"As I understand." She began, tabbing the water controls. "There are only minor repairs left to be done. So this should be operational."

Sure enough, hot water began spilling forth, filling the tub.

"Care to join me?"

He got a thoughtful look on his face.

"In one moment. Thereís something missing."

He turned and walked out. Kathryn heard him in the other room and seconds later he reappeared, hiding his hands behind his back.

Kathryn watched quietly as he brought out a bottle, pulled off the stopper and began pouring a light purple liquid into the water.

The scent of lilacs reached her nose and she smiled.

"Now would you care to join me?í She asked, unbuttoning her blouse and slipping it off her shoulders.

Chakotay smiled back pulling his top off.

"Iíd love to."

They quickly shed the rest of their clothes and sank down together in the warm, bubble filled tub. Kathryn sighed as she relaxed back against him. She placed her hands over his, which were resting on the tiniest of swell of her belly.

"This is absolutely marvelous." She said smiling.

Chakotay kissed the top of her head and caressed her abdomen.

"Yes it is." He replied.

They remained that way until the water cooled and then Chakotay lifted her from the tub and dried her with a fluffy towel.

He quickly dried himself and then turning to her; he scooped her up into his arms.

He carried her into the bedroom and gently laid her on the bed.

He stood up and gazed at her lying naked on their bed. His heart skipped a beat and his voice choked in his throat.

"You are so beautiful, Kathryn." It came out as a whisper. "I am the luckiest man in creation." He paused again and took a deep breath. "I love you so."

Kathryn smiled and held her arms up to him. Chakotay went willingly, lying his cheek against her breast as she enfolded him in her embrace.

"I love you too." She whispered against his forehead. "With all my heart."

They lay like that for a short while, just holding each other, letting their emotions engulf and sweep them away.

A short while later, Chakotay lifted his head and smiled down at her.

She smiled back and brought her hand up to wipe the unshed tears from his eyes. She then cupped his cheek and pulled his lips down to hers.

"Make love to me, husband." She whispered when they pulled apart.

"For the rest of our lives, wife." He whispered back.

He lowered his lips to her again and began to make slow, sweet love to her.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Morning, mom." Phoebe called out as she entered the house.

Gretchen looked up from her coffee and smiled at her youngest daughter.

"Good afternoon you mean."

Phoebe nodded as she grabbed a cup and joined her mother at the table.

"Kathryn and Chakotay back yet?" She asked.

"No." Gretchen answered.

"Iím still wondering where they went." Phoebe wondered out loud.

A slow grin came to Gretchenís face.

"You know something." Phoebe stated.

Gretchen nodded.

"Well are you going to tell me?í

"Well, weíre not one hundred percent sure about this.Ē Gretchen began. "But I got a call from Neelix this morning. It seems that he, the Doctor, Seven and Harry Kim went up to Spacedock after the party."

"And?"

"Well they couldnít get on Voyager, but they were told that all the crews had been given the night off."

"So?"

"Let me finish." Her mother said. "There were a couple of lights on, on the ship."

"That doesnít mean anything." Phoebe said. "The repair crews just could have forgotten."

"Thatís what I told him. But he told me that while they were staring at the ship, the lights for Kathrynís quarters came on."

Phoebe shook her head with a smile.

"That sister of mine is one lucky woman." Her mother looked at her with a question on her face. "Her husband is a romantic."

Gretchen nodded.

"He most certainly is."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn sighed contentedly. She was having the most wonderful dream.

She was back on Voyager, in the bed she shared with her very handsome husband, who was raining soft kisses all over her face.

His captured a soft moan escaping her lips, as his mouth covered hers.

Kathrynís eyes fluttered open as Chakotay deepened the kiss. Her hand snaked up over his shoulder to the back of his head, holding him to her.

"Hello, my love." He said upon breaking off the kiss.

"Good morning." She sighed happily as she stretched and then curled up against him.

"Actually, itís good afternoon." He said chuckling as she lifted her head to look at him. "Itís just after noon."

"Is it really?"

He nodded.

"How long have you been awake?"

"An hour and a half."

"And you didnít wake me?"

He smiled.

"I enjoy watching you sleep." He paused and moved to sit up. "And Iíve been busy."

"Doing what?" She asked as he got out of bed.

"Another surprise." He said. "Stay right there."

Kathryn smiled as she settled back against the pillows, watching his naked body walk out of the room.

Seconds later, he returned with a covered tray.

Kathryn sat up s he rejoined her on the bed. He set the tray on the bed.

"Brunch is served." He announced lifting the lid.

"Youíre going to spoil me." She said giving him a quick kiss and then helping herself to some fruit.

"Thatís the idea." He said, likewise helping himself to some fruit. "Iíve waited a long time to do these special little things for you."

Kathryn smiled.

"What do you mean waited? You used to do all sorts of special little things for me."

He nodded.

"But not as much as I wanted to. For example, breakfast in bed, with me."

Kathryn laughed.

"That would have been wonderful."

"Yes it would have." He grinned. "I can just picture what your reaction would have been if Iíd done this five or ten years ago."

"Ten years ago, I probably would have thrown you in the brig."

They laughed and Chakotay removed the tray with the remains of their brunch. He settled back against the headboard.

"Five years ago." She continued. "Five years ago, I would have been very surprised."

"And then you would have thrown me in the brig." He chuckled.

"I donít know about that." She demurred, as she climbed into his lap so she was facing him. "I would have been very surprised, yes, and then I would have shown you how grateful I was."

She slowly walked her fingers up his chest and felt his manhood begin to stir beneath her.

"After all, a Captain should be grateful when her First Officer does something special for her. Donít you think?" She asked, leaning in to place little kisses all over his neck.

"Oh yes." He moaned. "By all means. I mean, it is a First Officers sworn duty to take care of his Captain."

He moaned again as her hands moved between them to wrap around his now extremely hard member.

"ToÖ make sure." He panted. "All herÖ needsÖ are met."

Kathryn raised her head from where she was nibbling on his ear.

"Chakotay." She murmured.

"Yes?"

"Shut up and take care of my needs at this moment."

Chakotay grinned and grabbed her hips. He lifted her and positioned himself at her entrance.

"It will be my pleasure." He growled as he pulled her down on him, piercing her body with his rigid weapon.

"Not all yours." She moaned as their bodies joined.

"Oh no." He groaned as she began to move on him. "Definitely not all mine."

The talking ceased as their bodies began to communicate in a language that had been spoken by lovers since the dawn of time.

Chakotay kept his hands on her waist, lifting her up and down in concert with his thrusts, as her hands gripped his shoulders for support.

Their bodies moved in tandem, while their breathing had grown ragged and shallow. Little moans, gasps and sighs escaped their lips as the sensations built between them.

Chakotay eased forward a little as he felt Kathryn move to slide her legs behind him.

Kathryn locked her legs around him as she brought her lips to his. She kissed him passionately, her tongue moving deep in his mouth.

Chakotay returned her kiss with equal ardor, his tongue plunging into her mouth as his shaft plunged deeper and deeper into her body.

Kathryn broke off the kiss as she stilled her body. She moved her hands over his shoulders.

Chakotay stopped thrusting into her and ran his hands up her body as they gazed into each otherís eyes.

Neither one spoke. No words were necessary as their eyes spoke all the feelings in their hearts.

Kathryn smiled at him as her hand moved from his shoulder to caress his cheek. She leaned closer and rested her forehead against his.

"I love you." She whispered against his lips.

"As I love you." He whispered back.

With their foreheads still together, she began to slowly roll her hips against him.

Chakotay moaned deep in his throat and began to thrust into her again with slow, steady strokes.

Kathryn gasped suddenly as Chakotay grasped her shoulders and pushed her back on the bed.

Her hands reached out to his legs, stretched out on either side of her head and grabbed onto his ankles.

Chakotay slid his hands down her body, over her abdomen and clasped her hips.

"Move with me, Kathryn." He groaned as he began to push and pull her body against him.

She moaned and moved her body, with his hands setting the pace.

Suddenly, Kathryn cried out and arched her back as his hand slid down and his thumb stroked the heart of her desire.

"OhÖ myÖ love!" She panted. "Chakotay! Oh God, Chakotay!"

She continued to drive herself against him as Chakotay stroked her highly sensitive flesh relentlessly until the sensations shooting throughout her entire body fused in the center of her being.

All of a sudden, her nails dug into his ankles and her body raised off the bed as the feelings exploded from the center of her being to envelope her entire body.

With his name on her lips, she let herself get lost in the explosion.

Watching his wife as she came with such force, Chakotay drove himself inside her one last time.

His release burst from him with such ferocity, he collapsed back against the pillows calling her name.

Kathryn lifted her head to look at him and gave him a weak but satisfied smile.

Chakotay returned her smile and extended his hand to her. She placed hers in it and he gently pulled her up.

She relaxed against his chest, her head on his shoulder and placed little kisses against his neck.

Chakotay kissed the top of her head and rubbed her back.

A moment or two later, after their breathing had returned to normal, Chakotay sighed almost reticently.

Kathryn lifted her head to look at him.

"What?" She asked softly.

"I was just wishing that we could stay in this moment forever." He replied.

"If we did that." She said with a hint of a smile. "As lovely as that sounds, weíd never make love again."

She ran her finger down his chest and gave him a look of mock horror.

"And that would be dreadful." She continued the humor obvious in her voice. "Absolutely dreadful."

Chakotay moved his hands over her shoulders to her breasts.

"I didnít think of that." He murmured as he brushed his thumbs over her nipples.

"I didnít think you had." She moaned.

Chakotay just smiled as he began to alternately knead her breasts and tease her nipples.

"Chakotay." She purred.

"Mmm?"

"Donít stop." She sighed as she leaned into his hands.

He smiled at that.

"Never, for the rest of our lives." He paused and his smile grew into an impish grin as he dropped his hands to her waist.

He pressed a quick kiss to her lips and shifted his position, swinging his legs off the bed, holding her with him.

"Hey!" She exclaimed. "What happened to never stopping?"

"Sorry, my heart." He said running his hands up her sides. "Iíd love nothing more than to stay here and make love to you all day, but the repair crews are due back at fourteen hundred hours. So that only gives us an hour to take a shower, get dressed and get off Voyager."

Kathryn sighed.

"Well, if we must." She wrapped her arms around his neck. "Shall we shower together and save time?"

"My thoughts exactly." He said, moving his hands under her and standing up. "Iím so glad weíre thinking on the same wavelength."

Kathryn laughed and clenched her inner muscles around his relaxed member, attempting to coax some new life into him.

Chakotay groaned as he made his way towards the bathroom. He felt her muscles contracting around him and his own reaction.

By the time they entered the shower with the water pouring down on them, Chakotayís manhood was rigid and already sliding in and out of her.

Their moans of pleasure were muffled by the sound of the water.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Chakotay and Kathryn entered her motherís home arm in arm.

"Good afternoon." Kathryn called out. "Anyone home?"

"Weíre in the kitchen." Gretchen called back.

They walked into the kitchen and were greeted by her mother and sister who had huge grins on their faces.

"Howís your ship?" Gretchen asked.

Kathryn looked taken aback.

"What do you mean?"

It was all Gretchen could do not to burst out laughing.

"Thatís where you two disappeared to last night isnít it?"

"As a matter of fact." Chakotay said as he sat down, pulling Kathryn into his lap. "Thatís exactly where we went."

"Yes." Kathryn said smiling lovingly at Chakotay. "My wonderful husband planned a beautiful surprise for me on the bridge of our ship."

"What kind of surprise?" Phoebe asked, leaning forward on her elbows.

"A candlelight dance on the bridge." She said as she and Chakotay shared a secret smile. "And then he took me to our cabin and showed me the work theyíve done on it."

"So, everything looks good?" Gretchen asked.

"Yes." Chakotay replied. "Theyíve done an excellent job in remodeling our quarters."

"You mean, you two snuck out of your own reception to go up onto your ship," Phoebe began. "To dance on the bridge?"

"Thatís right." Chakotay said, running his hand down Kathrynís arm and resting it on her thigh.

Phoebe smiled and shook her head.

"Well, as long as you two had a good time, I guess thatís all that matters."

"Oh we did." Kathryn said pressing a kiss to her husbandís lips.

"We did indeed." Chakotay agreed.

Kathryn gave him another quick kiss and then climbed out of his lap to go and rummage through her motherís fridge.

"You are one lucky woman, Kath." Phoebe said. "Your husband is a romantic."

Kathryn popped her head up over the door and flashed her sister a winning smile.

"Yes, I know." She said and ducked back into the fridge.

Moments later, she returned to her husbandís lap munching on a carrot.

"Oh, Kathryn." He mother spoke up. "I almost forgot. Mark called this morning."

"He did?"

"Mmhmm." Gretchen said. "In fact, this is the second time heís called. The first time was two days after you left to go after my son-in-law here."

"Howís he doing?" Kathryn asked.

"Pretty good. He and his wife just celebrated their fifth anniversary."

"Thatís wonderful." Kathryn said. "Iím happy for him."

"He wanted to know when youíd be home." He mother told her. "He wanted to drop by to welcome you home and off his congratulations on your marriage."

"Thatís very thoughtful of him." Chakotay said. He turned to Kathryn. "Perhaps you should give him a call."

"Are you sure?"

Chakotay smiled and nodded.

"Yes. Iím sure. Give him a call." He paused and lifted her hand in his, in an imitation of the way they held hands on New Earth. "See if he and his wife would like to meet us for lunch."

Kathryn wrapped her free arms around his neck and kissed him soundly on the lips.

"I love you." She said after breaking off the kiss.

"I love you, too." He replied. "Now go make your call."

She gave him another quick kiss and hopped of his lap.

Chakotay watched her leave the room with a smile on his face. He turned back to the table to see his mother-in-law and sister-in-law smiling at him.

"That was gracious of you, Chakotay." Gretchen said. "Not too many men would have done what you just did."

"What?" He shrugged his shoulders.

Phoebe joined in the conversation.

"You just told your wife to call her former fiancťe."

"The key word is former." Chakotay said and then held his hand up to stop them from continuing. "I trust my wifeís love."

"Youíre not concerned?" Phoebe asked. "At all?"

Chakotay shook his head.

"No Iím not concerned." He paused. "Look, I know Mark and Kathryn were childhood friends who later fell in love. And I know part of her will always have a special place in her heart for him. But sheís in love with me now. Sheís married to me and carrying my child."

"So youíre not afraid that there still might be something between them?"

"Oh I know thereís till something between them." Chakotay said.

Phoebe and Gretchen raised their eyebrows at him.

"History and respect." He said. "And I truly hope they can still be friends."

"Who?" Kathryn asked walking back into the kitchen.

"You and Mark." Chakotay answered.

"What about me and Mark?" She asked taking her earlier seat in his lap.

"Your husband was just telling us that he hoped you and Mark can be friends still." Gretchen said.

Kathryn wrapped an arm around his shoulders.

"Is that so?" Kathryn asked.

"Mmhmm." Chakotay said. "Did you get a hold of him?"

"Yes." She said. "Lunch tomorrow. One oíclock at his place."

"Sounds good."

Kathryn smiled and then turned to her mother.

"Got anything to eat?"

"You just went through the fridge twenty minutes ago." Her mother said. "You tell me."

"Thereís all kinds of food, just nothing Iím in the mood for." She said, almost pouting.

"Why donít you go to your friend Neelixí restaurant." Phoebe suggested.

Kathryn brightened and Chakotay paled.

"Whatís wrong with that idea Chakotay?" Gretchen asked, seeing his reaction.

Chakotay looked at Kathryn.

"Did we bring back any Leola root?"

Kathryn burst out laughing.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

The next day, Kathryn and Chakotay walked hand in hand up a cobblestone walkway. Halfway up, Kathryn stopped and tugged on his hand.

"Kathryn?"

"Thank you, Chakotay." She said. "Thank you for doing this with me."

Chakotay squeezed her hand.

"No thanks are necessary. You know Iíd do anything for you."

She smiled and stepped closer to him.

"I love you." She said.

"I know."

She laughed and stood on her tiptoes to give him a kiss. Her arms wound around his neck as she deepened the kiss.

Chakotayís arms went around her waist and held her against him, returning the kiss.

She broke off the kiss a moment later but left her arms around his neck.

"Remind me when we get home to show you just how grateful I am." She purred with a twinkle in her eyes.

"Youíve got a deal." He smiled.

They quickly kissed again and then resumed their walk up the path.

Just as they neared the front door, Kathryn stopped again, staring at a large ball of fur.

"Honey, what is it?" Chakotay asked. "You look like youíve seen a ghost."

Kathryn pointed to the pile of fur that suddenly moved, lifting its head to reveal what it was.

"It looks like my dog Petunia." She said. "But itís been ten years. SheÖ it canít be."

The dog regarded them and then its ears perked up. Chakotay watched its eyes widen and then shakily get to its feet.

Kathryn knelt down in front of the dog and held out her hand for the dog to sniff.

Suddenly the dogís tail started to wag furiously and it took a step forward and began to lick Kathryn's face.

Chakotay heard a laugh of delight come from his wife as her arms wrapped around the dog, hugging and petting her.

"Oh, Petunia." Kathryn cried, kissing the dogís face. "How are you doing old girl?"

"Sheís doing great." Came a masculine voice from above.

Kathryn and Chakotay looked up to the now open door, where now stood a man and woman.

"Hello, Mark." Kathryn said and then giving the dog a final pat, she stood up and took Chakotayís hand. "I canít believe sheís still alive."

"I think sheís been holding on all these years in the hopes to see you again." Mark said, stepping down off the porch, his wife right behind him.

The two couples stared at each other for a few moments in an awkward silence.

Chakotay squeezed Kathrynís hand. She looked up into his eyes. He gave her a slight nod and smiled at her.

Kathryn smiled back, returning the squeeze. She let go of his hand and took a step forward.

Markís wife put her hand on his shoulder and he looked at her. She gave him a smile with a slight nod.

Mark stepped forward and then for the first time in ten years, the former lovers embraced.

"Welcome home Kath." He said as he held her. "Welcome home."

They held each other for a few moments and then broke apart, tears in their eyes. Each of them stepped back to their respective spouse.

"This is my husband Chakotay." Kathryn said, taking his arm.

"Itís nice to meet you, Mark." Chakotay said, offering his hand. "Kathrynís talked about you over the years."

Mark shook his hand.

"All good I hope."

"Of course."

The two men finished and then Mark introduced his wife.

"And this is my lovely wife Diane." Mark said.

"Itís nice to finally meet you, Kathryn." Diane said walking forward to embrace her. "Welcome home."

"Itís nice to meet you too, Diane." She said. "And thank you. Itís good to be home."

"Chakotay." Diane said, shaking his hand. "Why donít we give them a couple minutes alone."

Chakotay glanced at Kathryn and nodded.

"What can I get you to drink?" Diane asked as she led Chakotay into the house.

When they were alone, Mark regarded Kathryn.

"You look good, Kath." He said. "And happier than Iíve ever seen you."

"Thank you. You look good too." She said. "And youíre right. Iím blissfully happy."

She knelt down to pet Petunia some more.

"Chakotay seems like a decent man." Mark said.

"He is."

"Isnít he the one you were sent after all those years ago?" He asked, kneeling down beside her.

"The one and the same." She smiled and stood up.

He stood up with her.

"How longÖ" he began and stopped.

"How long what?"

"How long before you realized you were in love with him?" He asked.

Kathryn gave him a short laugh before she answered.

"You know, I donít really know." She answered. "Iíll admit that I was attracted to Chakotay immediately."

"I can see why." Mark said.

Kathryn smiled.

"But it took a while for me to realize how I felt about him." She chuckled then. "And even then I refused to really admit to it."

She looked him in the eye.

"And I was determined to get back home to you."

"I had every intention of waiting." He said. "And then Starfleet declared Voyager lost and all hands dead."

"And Diane helped you grieve." Kathryn said.

"Yes." Mark said. "She was a great comfort. And then little by little I realized I was falling in love with her."

"Chakotay helped me too." She said. "Iíd known for some time how he felt about me and then when I got your letterÖ"

"Is that when you two got together?"

Kathryn shook her head.

"We almost did, but something always came up and held us back. It wasnít until after we got home."

"And you went after him."

Kathryn smiled.

"Yes. I went after him. I realized I couldnít let him go."

"Then I guess the only question I have left is, are you happy? Truly happy?" He asked.

Kathrynís smile grew as she nodded.

"Yes, Mark. Like I said earlier, I am blissfully happy. I feel as if Iíve loved Chakotay all my life. That he and I have been together forever." She paused. "Heís my soul-mate. It doesnít mean that I never loved you or Justin, butÖ"

"I understand completely." He said. "I feel that way about Diane."

They gazed at each other in silence and then embraced again.

"Shall we go inside now?" He asked.

Kathryn nodded.

Together they walked into the house, each of them moving to sit next to their spouse.

"Did you have a good talk?" Diane asked.

"Yes we did." Kathryn said placing her hand in Chakotayís.

"Iím glad." Diane said. "I understand youíre a coffee nut, Kathryn. Can I interest you in a cup?"

"Youíre right. I am a coffee nut, but actually a cup of tea would be nice." Kathryn said.

"No coffee!?" Mark asked shocked. "You have a bad experience with a cup?"

They all laughed as Kathryn and Chakotay shared a secret smile. The look in his eyes told Kathryn that she should be the one to make the announcement.

"No." Kathryn said. "I didnít have a bad experience with a cup." She paused and looked at Chakotay who gave her a wink and squeezed her hand. "The doctor has ordered me to stay away from coffee for the next six and a half, seven months until the baby is born."

Markís chin dropped and Dianeís face lit up.

"Youíre pregnant?" Mark exclaimed.

"Thatís wonderful! Congratulations!" Diane said.

"Iím happy for you, Kath." Mark said. "I know how much youíve always wanted to have a child."

"You must be very excited, Chakotay." Diane said.

"Very." Chakotay said. "I canít wait to meet the little guy."

"You mean girl." Kathryn said elbowing him playfully in the ribs.

"Truth be told." Chakotay said. "Iím rather hoping we do have a girl, one whoís the spitting image of her gorgeous mother."

Kathryn blushed as Mark and Diane watched with joy as the newlyweds playfully bantered with each other.

"Well are you two ready to eat?" Diane asked and they nodded. "Then why donít we head out to the patio."

The group rose and made their way outside.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Later that evening, lying in a hammock, Kathryn ran her hands over Chakotayís bare chest.

"I want to thank you again for this afternoon." She said.

"And I already told you, no thanks are necessary." He said. "If Mark hadnít called you, I was going to suggest that you call him."

"Really?"

"Yes." He said. "Kathryn, you and he were childhood friends and you were engaged. It wouldnít have been right if you didnít see him."

Kathryn smiled and shook her head.

"You are too much." She said. "What did I do to have you in my life?"

"You followed orders and went chasing after a renegade Maquis ship." He answered with a smile.

"Thank God for orders." She said leaning in to kiss him.

"You can say that again." He said as he lifted his head to quicken the joining of their mouths.

They kissed long and slow, savoring the taste and feel of each other. Chakotayís hands caressed her back as he moved his mouth away from her lips and kissed a trail along her jaw.

A soft moan sounded in Kathrynís throat as she lifted her head from his kiss and smiled dreamily at him.

Chakotay returned her smile as she snuggled back against him, her head resting on his chest.

They gazed in silence at the stars, relaxing in their own sublime world.

"Look at all those stars." He said softly against the top of her head.

"Mmm. Theyíre certainly bright tonight."

"They are that." He said. "Iíve always loved to lie under the night sky and gaze at the stars."

"It is beautiful." She commented. "But there is nothing like seeing them zipping past your window as you travel among them."

"Weíll be back among them soon." He chuckled softly.

She lifted her head to look at him, her eyebrows raised.

"I know how much you miss being on Voyager." He said smiling. "Even though youíve tried to hide it, I know itís been hard for you not being up there."

She smiled and ran her hand up his chest to cup his cheek.

"It hasnít been all that bad." She said. "After all, these last four months have seen some wonderful things happen."

He smiled at her and ran his hand up her arm.

"Very true." He said. "But youíre a Starship captain." He paused and brought his hand up to caress her cheek. "You belong on a ship. Up there."

She shook her head with a smile.

"Thatís where youíre wrong." She said. "True, Iím more comfortable on a ship, in space. But where I belong most is wherever you are."

She leaned over and pressed a quick kiss to his lips.

"I love you." She said. "I love you so much, that it doesnít matter to me where I am. As long as youíre with me."

"I feel the same way." He said lifting his head and kissing the tip of her nose. "I love you."

Kathryn settled back against him, her head once again on his chest.

After a little while, Chakotay nudged her.

"Kathryn?"

"Mmm?" She murmured, half asleep.

"I think we should go in."

"No." She sighed contentedly and snuggled tighter against him. "Letís stay here. Itís so peaceful."

"You sure?í

"Mmhmm."

He kissed the top of her head.

"Sweet dreams my love." He whispered. "I love you."

"Love you too." She murmured.

Chakotay closed his eyes as his arms wound tighter around his wife and very quickly joined her in a deep, contented sleep.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Captainís Personal Log. Stardate -----.-. Life aboard Voyager for the last six months has been pretty uneventful. A far cry from our time in the Delta Quadrant. On a happier note, last night Chakotay surprised me with a beautiful wooden cradle for the baby. One he built himself."

From his seat, Chakotay watched his very pregnant wife exit her ready room and move towards him. He made no move to help her as they had discussed.

"If I need help, Iíll ask." She had told him. "Iím pregnant, not an invalid."

So he watched he with a bemused smile as she slowly lowered herself into her command chair.

Once she was settled she turned to look at him with a smile on her face.

"Status?"

"Same as yesterday and the day before. And the day before that." He said, the boredom evident in his voice. "Everything is running smoothly."

Kathryn chuckled.

"If I didnít know better." She said smiling. "Iíd think you actually miss the Delta Quadrant."

"At least there was something happening out there." Came Tomís voice from the helm. "I mean, itís great to be home."

"But thereís no adventure." Harry chimed in.

Kathryn looked around at her bridge crew and saw the same look on all their faces. She sighed.

"I have to admit." She said. "Iím getting a little tired of being used as a ferry for one diplomat or another."

This time Chakotay chuckled.

"If I have to tell the story about those space-dwelling creatures one more time, IÖ" he stopped and rolled his eyes dramatically. "I might not be so diplomatic about it."

Everyone on the bridge laughed, except Tuvok of course.

"I too must admit to being weary about having to recount our adventures over and over." Tuvok said.

"Iíve got an idea." Tom said from his seat. "Why donít we find that wormhole and go back to the Delta Quadrant."

"Yeah, then we wouldnít have to worry about anymore ambassadors or diplomats." Harry said, jumping on the bandwagon.

"And it wouldnít be the same thing day in and day out." Chakotay said with a grin.

"All that work to get home and now you want to go back?" Kathryn said smiling. "Very well, Mr. Paris, set course for the wormhole."

"Yes, maíam." He said and moved his fingers over the console. "Course set."

"Engage, Mr. Paris."

Voyager shot into warp.

"If only it were that easy." Chakotay said looking at Kathryn and smiling.

She reached over and grasped his hand.

"Donít worry. In another month, you wonít be bored." She said patting her swollen belly.

Chakotayís face lit up as he leaned closer and placed his hand on her belly, hoping to feel his child kick.

He remembered the first time heíd felt it. It filled him with wonder to know that out of his and Kathrynís love; this child had been conceived.

They had been lying in each otherís arms on the couch in their quarters when all of a sudden Kathryn gasped and reached for his hand.

"Kathryn, what is it?" He had asked.

"Hold on a second." She told him, holding his hand against her belly. "There!" Did youÖ?"

A huge smile grew on his face as his eyes widened. His fingers spread on the tight skin that protected their child.

"Thatís our child?!" He had asked, awe in his voice and tears in his eyes.

Kathryn nodded, her eyes filled with tears also.

"This is so incredible." He said, placing his other hand on her belly as well. Then he looked up at Kathryn. "Does it hurt?"

"No." She said smiling. "It doesnít hurt."

And after sitting there for a little while longer, his hands still on her abdomen, Chakotay had lifted her into his arms and then carried her into their bedroom, where they made love to each other all night.

Chakotay smiled up at her, oblivious to the grins from the bridge crew.

"I canít wait." He said happily.

"Remember that when itís your turn for the two in he morning feedings." She said, humour in her voice.

Chakotay grinned.

"Captain." Tuvok interrupted. "Weíre receiving a transmission."

"Source?í

Tuvok checked his console then looked up.

"Itís from the Enterprise." He paused. "Itís a private message for you."

"Very well. Pipe it into my ready room." She said as she slowly rose from her chair. "Just tell whoever it is to give me a couple minutes."

She glanced over at her husband and saw him chewing his lip to keep from laughing.

"Oh shut up." She told him and then walked towards her ready room.

Chakotay watched her as she walked away from him until the ready room doors slid shut, cutting her from his view. He chuckled softly to himself.

"Commander." Tom said, turning to look at him. "You realize that if you have a girl, youíre going to be outnumbered."

Chakotay laughed.

"Yes. And sheíll probably be as stubborn as her mother." He said with a smile.

"I donít believe it is possible for anyone to be as stubborn as the Captain." Tuvok said.

Just then the ready room doors opened and all talking ceased as the Captain came out with a smile on her face.

"Good news I take it?" Chakotay asked as she sat down.

"Very good news." She said. "That was Beverly."

"And how is Beverly doing?" He asked.

"Sheís doing great." She said. "As a matter of fact, she told me some wonderful news."

"And what might that be?" Chakotay asked.

Kathryn smiled.

"Sheís pregnant."

"Youíre right." Chakotay said. "That is wonderful news."

"And when we rendezvous with the Enterprise, sheís throwing me a baby shower." Kathryn said excitedly. "Isnít that sweet?"

Tom and Harry glanced at each other.

Kathryn noticed this and chuckled.

"Tom, why donít you have BíElanna contact Beverly and co-ordinate things."

"Captain?" Tom said, turning to look at her.

"I know about the party BíElannaís throwing." Janeway said with a smile.

"Uh, wellÖ IÖ" he paused and turned back to his console. "Iíll let her know."

"Thanks, Tom."

Kathryn and Chakotay looked at each other and smiled.

"Increase to warp eight, Mr. Paris."

"Aye, Captain."

"Anxious to get to the party?" Chakotay asked quietly.

Kathryn nodded and he smiled.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Chakotay felt something poke him in the back.

"Mmm?" He murmured, still asleep.

"Chakotay, wake up!" Kathryn said. "Itís time!"

Chakotay opened his eyes and turned towards his wife.

"What?" He asked groggily.

"My water broke. The babyís on its way."

Suddenly he bolted up and out of the bed, running around to help her.

"Okay. Letís get you to sickbay." He said ushering her to the door.

"Uh, honey." She said and he looked at her. "Donít you think you should put something on?"

Chakotay looked down and realized he was naked.

He grinned at her and ran over to his side of he bed and quickly pulled on his pajama bottoms.

He grabbed her robe as he ran back to her and helped her slip it on over her light shift as they walked to the door.

"Chakotay to sickbay." He called out as they moved down the corridor towards the turbolift.

"Sickbay. Go ahead, Commander." Came the Doctorís voice.

"Get ready for some company, Doc." He said. "The Captainís in labour and weíre on our way."

"Weíll be ready, Commander. Sickbay out."

Suddenly Kathryn stopped and her grip on Chakotayís hand tightened.

"Oh, God!" She groaned.

"Breath through it, Kathryn." He said rubbing her back as the contraction gripped her body.

A minute later she took a deep breath and indicated that the contraction was over and they could continue.

Once in the turbolift, she looked up at him.

"Iím too old for this." she said, her face suddenly creasing in pain.

Chakotay put his arms around her to help keep her balance as they waited for the contraction to pass.

When it was over, she sank to the floor of the lift.

"Oh, God. I donít think I can do this." She said, her voice shaking.

Chakotay hunched down beside her, brushing the hair out of her face.

"Yes you can do this." He said. "Youíre the strongest woman I know. Thatís just one of the reasons I love you."

She smiled at him and brought her hand up to caress his cheek. Suddenly her face grew tight.

"Here comes another one." She groaned.

"Okay. Now take a deep breath, just donít push." He said giving her his hand.

The contraction ended as the lift stopped. Chakotay lifted her into his arms and carried her down the corridor to sickbay.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Six hours later, covered in perspiration and thoroughly exhausted, Kathryn fell back against Chakotayís arms.

"Thatís it!" She panted as she shook her head. "No more. I canít do this anymore."

Chakotay smoothed a cool cloth over her face.

"Yes you can." He said.

"No I canít." She insisted. "I mean it, Chakotay. Use the fetal transporter or do it the ancient fashioned way and do a c-section. I donít care. I just canít do this anymore."

"Iím afraid youíre going to have to, Captain." The Doctor said. "It shouldnít be too much longer."

"You said that hours ago." Kathryn cried. "You unsophisticated computer program!"

"It is not my fault your child is stubborn." The Doctor said, unperturbed. "Now, I can see the head, so on the next contraction I want you to push with all your might."

Just then the monitors began to beep.

"Okay, Captain." The Doctor said. "Another oneís coming. Get ready to push."

Kathryn looked up at Chakotay, who smiled encouragingly at her.

"Iím right here with you, love." He said. "Youíre doing great. And just remember one very important thing."

"Whatís that?" She asked, her face beginning to contort.

"I love you very much."

She smiled then even as she winced with the contraction.

"Okay, Captain. PUSH!" Commanded the Doctor.

"Argh!" Kathryn groaned as she pushed with all her being.

"Thatís it, Captain. Push. Push." The Doctor urged. "The headís almost out."

Kathryn cried out as she continued to push and then once again fell back against her husbandís arms.

"The headís out." The Doctor said. "Now this next one is the one. When the contraction starts, youíve got to bear down and push. And keep pushing until I say to stop. All right."

Kathryn nodded and looked again at her husband.

"This is it, Kathryn. One more push and weíll be holding our baby in our arms." He said. "Youíre doing great. I love you."

"I love you too." She said, her voice strained. "Oh God!"

"Okay, Captain. This is it. PUSH!" Said the Doctor. "Keep pushing until I tell you to stop."

"Ungh!" Kathryn grunted as she bore down with all her strength. "Oh my God!"

"Thatís it, Kathryn." Chakotay urged. "Youíre doing great."

"Oh shut up!" She yelled at him "This is all your fault!"

"My fault?"

"Uh, Commander, if I may. Donít take anything she says to heart." The Doctor said.

"YOUÖ AREÖ NEVERÖ TOUCHINGÖ MEÖ AGAIN!" She panted as she continued to push.

"There! Okay, stop pushing." The Doctor said excitedly.

Suddenly sickbay was filled with the strong, loud cries of new life.

"IsÖ is that our baby?" Kathryn asked, her voice emotional.

The Doctor smiled at them and then walked around the bio-bed to hand Kathryn a squirming bundle.

"Captain. Commander. Meet your daughter." He said happily.

Kathryn gazed down at her newborn baby.

"Oh my. Sheís perfect." She crooned.

"And as beautiful as her mother." Chakotay said leaning in to look at his daughter.

Kathryn smiled at Chakotay with tears in her eyes.

"Iím sorry for what I said." She sniffled. "I love you. I love you so much."

Chakotay smiled and leaned in to press a quick kiss to her lips.

"No apologies." He said. "I love you too. More than you know."

He brushed his finger along his daughterís cheek.

"I love you too, little one." He whispered sweetly. "Welcome to our lives. Weíve been waiting to meet you."

Kathryn grabbed his hand and gave it a squeeze as he sat on the edge of the bed.

He closed his eyes briefly and gave thanks to the spirits that had safely guided their child into the universe.

The Doctor cleaned up the Captain and moved her to another bed.

"Congratulations, Captain." The Doctor said a while later.

"Thank you Doctor." She said. "And Iím sorry for what I said earlier. Youíre more than just a computer program."

"No apologies are necessary." He said. "Itís completely understandable."

Kathryn looked around.

"Whereís, Chakotay?" She asked unaware that heíd left sickbay.

"When you dazed off, he left to take care of something." The Doctor replied. "He said he wouldnít be too long."

Kathryn nodded.

"Captain, if I may ask?" The Doctor ventured. "Have you and the Commander decided on a name yet?"

"Not really." She chuckled. "Weíve discussed a few possibilities, but we havenít settled on one yet."

The Doctor smiled.

"Well, Iíll let you rest until Commander Chakotay returns."

"Thank you again, Doctor."

He nodded, turned and walked into his office.

Kathryn watched him leave and then pulled her daughterís cradle closer.

"I wonder what your fatherís up to." She said as she lifted the tiny bundle. "Oh, my sweet girl. You are such a blessing and you will be so loved."

"Indeed she will." Said Chakotay from the doorway.

"Whereíd you go?" She asked him as he walked over and sat on the bed next to her.

"Oh, I went to make a few calls and put on some clothes." He replied, leaning back and resting his head on Kathrynís shoulder.

"Whoíd you call?" She asked, shifting their daughter into his arms.

"Your mother for one, but after that I canít tell you." He said peering down at his daughter. "What are we going to name her?"

"Nice changing of the subject." She chuckled. "As for a name for our daughter." She paused. "None of the names we thought of seem to suit her."

They sat for a couple of minutes contemplating names.

Suddenly Kathryn shifted and looked up at him, her eyes twinkling.

"Iíve got the perfect name." She said.

"Letís hear it." He said.

"Tayryn." She said softly. "Tay from you and Ryn from me."

"Tayryn." He repeated, trying it out. "Tayryn Janeway." He smiled. "I love it. Itís perfect."

"Then Tayryn it is." She said.

"Tayryn." He said. "I like it. Itís appropriate that a child conceived in our love, that is part of both of us, have a part of both of our names."

Suddenly as if sensing that her parents were talking about her, Tayryn began to fuss.

"I think someoneís hungry." Chakotay said.

Kathryn opened the robe she was wearing, revealing her full breasts.

"Let me see her." She said.

Chakotay handed Tayryn to Kathryn and watched as his wife shifted their daughter in her arms until she was able to place her nipple in Tayrynís mouth.

As the baby began to suck greedily, Kathryn sighed.

"You know." Chakotay said softly, placing his hand over hers as she nursed. "We still have to decide on God-parents for this little miracle."

Kathryn nodded.

"I know." She said. "But itís difficult. We have so many dear friends and wellÖ"

"You donít want anyone to feel left out." He said finishing for her. "I know. You donít want to hurt anyoneís feelings. Neither do I."

"No I donít." She replied as she shifted Tayryn to the other breast. "As far as Iím concerned, the entire senior staff are her aunts and uncles."

"Yes, they are family." He said and then snapped his fingers. "I know the perfect people."

Kathryn looked up into his face and smiled.

"Beverly and Jean-Luc." They said together and grinned.

"Looks like weíre thinking as one mind again." He said smiling.

"I love it when we do that." She chuckled as she burped the baby. "Well, obviously we agree on her God-parents. Beverly and Jean-Luc re perfect."

They talked quietly and when the doctor walked out of his office an hour later, he stopped and smiled.

Thinking quickly, he walked back into his office and came back out moments later with his holo-imager.

He snapped a picture of his commanding officers sleeping in each otherís arms, cradling their newborn daughter.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Oh, Kath, sheís beautiful." Exclaimed Beverly, cradling a contented Tayryn in her arms.

Jean-Luc peered over his wifeís shoulder at the sleeping baby, a small smile coming to his lips, as he stroked Tayrynís cheek and she smiled.

"I have to agree with my wife." He said. "Sheís beautiful."

Kathryn and Chakotay beamed.

"Thank you." Chakotay said, his voice full of pride.

"And just think." Kathryn said. "In only two and a half months youíll be parents too."

It was Jean-Luc and Beverlyís turn to beam as Jean-Luc patted Beverlyís swollen belly.

At six and a half months, she looked more like she was ready to give birth right then and there.

"Boy are you ever going to have your hands full." Chakotay said. "Twins."

"Yes we are." Beverly said, handing Tayryn to Jean-Luc. "And you should have seen Jean-Lucís face. When I first told him I was pregnant and then when we found out I was having twins."

"To say I was shocked and surprised would be an understatement." Jean-Luc said rocking Tayryn as she began to fuss.

"Youíre a natural Jean-Luc." Kathryn said as her daughter fell into a contented slumber.

Beverly and Jean-Luc smiled at each other and chuckled.

"What?" Kathryn asked.

"Iíve never really been comfortable around children." Jean-Luc explained. "Itís only been over the last, maybe, ten years that Iíve started to get used to them."

"Used to them. Now thatís an understatement." Beverly said with a smile. "Children, especially small children are drawn to him. And he is so good with them." She paused as she sat down and gazed up at him. "Heís going to be an amazing father."

Jean-Luc sat down beside her and leaned over to give her a quick kiss.

"Merci, ma coeur." He said softly and then looked over at Kathryn and Chakotay. "And we already know what a terrific mother Beverly is."

They nodded.

"So how is Wesley?" Kathryn asked.

"Last weíve heard, heís doing great." Beverly said.

"Does he know about the twins?"

Beverly shook her head.

"Iím hoping heíll contact us before theyíre born though. Iíd love for him to be there to meet his brother and sister."

"Youíre having one of each?" Kathryn exclaimed happily and Beverly nodded. "Oh thatís wonderful."

"Weíre happy about it too." Beverly said.

"Have you picked any names?" Chakotay asked.

"Weíve tossed around a few, but havenít settled on anything definite yet." Jean-Luc said.

Just then Tayryn began to cry and fuss.

"I think someoneís hungry." Jean-Luc said, standing and carrying the baby over to Kathryn.

"Would it bother either of you if I nurse her here?"

Both Beverly and Jean-Luc shook their heads.

"You go right ahead." Beverly said.

Just then the comm sounded.

"Engineering to Commander Chakotay."

"Go ahead, BíElanna."

"Chakotay, can you please come down here?"

Chakotay glanced at Kathryn and she nodded.

"Be right there, BíElanna. Chakotay out." He replied closing the channel.

"Mind if I tag along?" Jean-Luc asked. "Give the women a chance to talk without us."

"Sure." Chakotay said. He turned to his wife and daughter. "Hopefully we wonít be too long."

"Okay." Kathryn said.

Chakotay leaned over and pressed a kiss on Tayrynís head. He lifted his face and smiled at Kathryn before placing a soft kiss against her lips.

"I love you." He said softly.

"I love you too." She smiled.

Jean-Luc kissed Beverly at the same time and whispered his love to her.

Chakotay stood and gestured to the door.

"Shall we?í

"Lead the way." Jean-Luc said.

Kathryn and Beverly watched with smiles on their faces as their husbands left the room.

"You realize that we are the luckiest women in the universe." Beverly said.

"Oh yes." Kathryn said and then a sly smile crept to her lips. "And they are the luckiest men to be married to us."

"Absolutely!" Beverly agreed as she got up and moved beside Kathryn. "Oh I canít wait till these two arrive."

"I still canít believe youíre having twins." Kathryn said. She paused and all of a sudden a knowing look came to her face. "You conceived when Chakotay and I were on board. Didnít you?"

Beverly nodded and a dreamy smile came to her face.

"Oh now that speaks volumes." Kathryn said. "So start speaking."

Beverly laughed.

"Well I believe these two miracles were conceived on the day you told Chakotay you were pregnant." Beverly said with a laugh, her hand on her belly.

"Go on." Kathryn said.

"Well." Beverly began and shook her head. "Jean-Luc would kill me if he knew I was telling you."

"Whoís going to tell him?"

"Well after I pushed Chakotay into the holodeck, I told Jean-Luc the news while we were riding the liftÖ"

"You made love in the turbolift?!" Kathryn exclaimed and Beverly nodded. "I sure hope you guys halted it."

"We did." Beverly laughed and sighed at the memory. "That was an incredible experience."

"Next time, try it with the lift moving. Itís a whole different experience." Kathryn said with a grin.

"I take it youíre talking from experience?"

"Oh yes." Kathryn answered. "The advantages of having your ship in Spacedock."

The two women laughed and then got up to change the baby and lay her down.

They walked back arm in arm to the main cabin.

"So are you and Jean-Luc going to stay on the Enterprise after the twins are born?" Kathryn asked as they sat down.

"Weíve discussed it." Beverly said. "And weíre going to try it out. But Jean-Luc has said that if it becomes too much, weíll both resign and raise them planet-side." Beverly paused. "I was quite shocked when he said that. I know how much he loves his ship and being in space."

Kathryn smiled.

"You married a good man."

"Donít I know it." Beverly said and then chuckled. "The only argument we had was if we resign, do we live on Earth or Caldos."

"I take it Jean-Luc wants to live on Earth?"

Beverly nodded.

"His familyís vineyards are there." Beverly said. "La Barre, France. Itís a beautiful place. But I donít know if I could handle living in the family homestead."

"Too much history?" Kathryn asked.

"Yes." Beverly answered and sighed. "Eleven years ago, Jean-Lucís brother and nephew were killed in a fire."

"Oh my." Kathryn said softly. "He must have been heartbroken."

"He was." Beverly said. "Jean-Luc has always been very proud of his familyís name and history. And being in Starfleet, he figured heíd never marry and have any children to keep the Picard name going.í She paused. "And when Robert, thatís Jean-Lucís brother, got married and had a son, Jean-Luc was very happy."

"Took the burden off of him."

"Yes." Beverly said and then smiled. "He loved Renee. Thought of him as more like his son than his nephew."

"Thatís why heís so ecstatic about the twins." Kathryn guessed. "Especially since oneís a boy."

Beverly nodded.

"Okay, enough depressing talk." Beverly said. "What about you and Chakotay? Are you going to remain on Voyager?"

Kathryn shook her head.

"I donít know. We havenít discussed it." She said. "Right now it isnít too bad. Tayrynís only a week old and Chakotayís taken command of Voyager for the time being."

"And." Beverly said.

"And I find that Iím enjoying not being in command. Iím enjoying spending time with the baby and being able to do all the things I normally never get to do because Iím too busy being the Captain." Kathryn laughed. "Itís funny. The whole time Voyager was in Spacedock, all I wanted was to get back to her. I tried to hide it from Chakotay, but he knew."

"And now youíd be content settling down planet-side and raising your daughter."

Kathryn nodded.

"Crazy, isnít it?"

"I donít think so." Beverly said and smoothed her hands over her belly. "Truth be told, I rather like the idea. But for Jean-Lucís sake, Iíll try it on the Enterprise."

Kathryn clasped Beverlyís hand.

"The sacrifices we make for love, eh?"

They laughed.

"But seriously, Kath." Beverly said when they stopped laughing. "Iíd tell Chakotay how youíre feeling. Maybe he feels the same way."

"I was planning on discussing it with him tonight as a matter of fact."

"Good."

"Perhaps you should take your own advice." Kathryn said.

Beverly laughed.

"Maybe I will."

Just then the doors parted and the men entered.

"Everything under control?" Kathryn asked Chakotay.

"Yes, maíam." He said with a grin a he sat down beside her. "BíElanna was just showing me her plans for the nursery. I told her Iíd check with you but that I was pretty sure youíd like them and to go ahead with them."

Suddenly Beverly yawned.

"Oh, excuse me." She said and yawned again. "I get so tired lately."

"Maybe we should go so you can rest." Jean-Luc said.

Beverly nodded.

"Yes. A nap sounds wonderful." Beverly said. "Sorry to cut our day short."

"Donít apologize." Kathryn said. "Your health is more important."

Jean-Luc stood and then helped Beverly up.

Kathryn and Chakotay stood also.

"Let me go get Tayryn and then weíll walk you to the shuttlebay." Kathryn said.

"No. Donít worry about it Kathryn." Jean-Luc said. "We know the way. You two stay here and relax while you can."

"If you insist." Kathryn said.

"I do."

The couples embraced and said their good-byes.

When Jean-Luc and Beverly were gone, Kathryn sank back down on the couch with a sigh.

Chakotay slid down next to her and twisted so that he was lying with his head in her lap.

"So, did you and Beverly have a nice talk?" He asked.

"Mmhmm." Kathryn said, running her fingers through his hair. "What about you and Jean-Luc?"

"We had an interesting conversation." Chakotay said.

"About?"

"Did you know that he and Beverly were considering leaving Starfleet to raise the twins?"

Kathryn nodded.

"Bev mentioned something bout it." She said quietly.

A small moment of silence filled the room.

"Earth or Dorvan?" Chakotay asked quietly.

"What?"

"Earth or Dorvan?" He repeated with a smile. "Where do you want to live?"

Kathryn looked down at him and shook her head in disbelief.

Chakotay sat up and faced her, taking her hands in his.

"Iíve known for the last couple of days that youíve been thinking about resigning your commission." He said, his smile still on his lips.

"How?"

"I know you, Kathryn. I can tell just by looking at you what youíre thinking."

"That readable am I?" She smiled.

"Only to me." He said. "So I repeat, Earth or Dorvan? Where do you want to raise our daughter?"

"You have no problem resigning your commission?" She asked.

He shook his head.

"None. I did it before." He grinned. "And now like before itís for a good reason, only this time a happier one. My wife and child."

"Chakotay." She whispered.

"Hey, what was it you said to me that night we were lying in the hammock?" He asked. "It doesnít matter to me where I live. As long as itís with you."

She nodded.

"Well, I told you, he same goes for me." He said. "I love you, Kathryn. You are my home. You and Tayryn. Nothing else matters. We could live on Vulcan for all I care. As long as weíre together."

Kathrynís eyes filled with tears.

"I love you so much." She whispered and leaned in to kiss him.

When they broke apart, Chakotay pulled Kathryn into his lap and held her.

"This is a big decision." She said. "If we live on Earth, your family will be hurt. Dorvan, my family."

"We have to think about what we want." Chakotay said. "About whatíll make us happy."

"Maybe we should try and contact Q. See if heíll transport us back to New Earth." Kathryn said with a laugh.

Chakotay chuckled.

"Think the shelterís still standing?"

"Yes. And probably home to a whole family of monkeys." Kathryn said and paused. "Can I ask a question?"

"Of course."

"Would you be willing to put in a replicater?"

Chakotay looked at her and she smiled.

"I love it on Dorvan. It reminds me of New Earth." She said. "But Iíd need a replicater."

Chakotay laughed and hugged her to him.

"Iíll put anything you want in the house."

"Anything?í She said raising her eyebrows at him.

"Yes." He answered. "Why? What else do you want?"

She grinned at him

"A bigger bathtub." The said together and burst out laughing.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Youíre serious?" Gretchen said standing and pacing.

It was a month after their decision to resign and they were on Earth to tell her family and inform Starfleet.

"Yes. Weíre serious." Kathryn said.

"But why Dorvan?" Gretchen asked. "Why canít Chakotay live here on Earth?"

"It was my decision, mother." Kathryn said, glad that Chakotay was out taking Tayryn for a walk. "Chakotay was more than willing to live here."

"Then why, Kathryn?"

Kathryn sighed.

"I like it on Dorvan." Kathryn said. "It reminds me of a planet in the Delta Quadrant that Chakotay and I lived on for six months."

"But there are no replicaters." Gretchen said, desperately using anything she could think of to persuade her daughter. "You hate to cook without replicaters."

Kathryn almost broke out in a huge grin, but instead let a small smile come to her lips.

"Chakotayís going to put one in for me."

Gretchen sat down with a sigh.

"So, nothing I can say will change your mind?"

Kathryn shook her head and stood up. She walked over and put her arm around her motherís shoulders.

"Itís only a two week trip to get to Dorvan." Kathryn said. "And you can visit anytime you want."

"I was looking forward to watching my granddaughter grow up." Gretchen said. "Now Iím only going to get to see her once in a while."

"So why donít you come and live on Dorvan with us?"

Both Kathryn and Gretchen turned to look at Chakotay who was standing in the doorway, holding his fusing daughter.

"What?" Gretchen asked.

"Are you serious, honey?í Kathryn asked.

"Yes, Iím serious." He said walking over to the women and handing Tayryn to Kathryn. "Sheís hungry."

Kathryn sat down and began to nurse the baby.

"So how about it, Gretchen?í Chakotay asked sitting on the couch next to Kathryn.

"Leave Earth?" Gretchen said.

"Why not, mom?í Kathryn asked. "Phoebeís getting married shortly to that Starfleet officer. Whatís his name again?"

"Arik Rega."

"Thank you." Kathryn said and continued. "Like I was saying, Phoebe and Arik are getting married soon and are going to be stationed on Deep Space Nine."

"And Bajor is closer to Dorvan than Earth." Chakotay said. "Youíd get to see her more often too."

"Aw come on, mom." Kathryn beseeched her. "Thereís nothing to keep you here."

"Iíve been living in this house since the day I married your father." Gretchen said. "Itís been in the family for generations."

"No one said anything about getting rid of the house." Kathryn said.

"Then what will we do with it?" Gretchen asked. "We canít just board it up."

"Why not ask Aunt Rita if any of her brood would like to live here."

Gretchen paused a moment and looked out the window thoughtfully. She turned back to Chakotay and Kathryn and nodded.

"All right. Iíll do it." She said. "But on one condition."

"Whatís that?" Chakotay asked.

"I get my own place." She said. "Nothing big, but someplace I can call my own."

"Youíre on." Chakotay said. "I have a very large piece of land on Dorvan and Iíll build you a house when we get there. Sound fair?"

"Yes. That sounds fair." Gretchen said with a smile.

"What sounds fair?" Came Phoebeís voice from the doorway.

Everyone turned to look at her and Arik.

"Iíve decided to move to Dorvan V with your sister and Chakotay." Gretchen told her.

Phoebe looked over at her sister.

"Youíre leaving Starfleet?"

Kathryn nodded.

"And you couldnít just live here on Earth?"

"Like you?" Kathryn said.

"Touchť." Phoebe said as she sat in Arikís lap. "Actually mom, moving to Dorvan is a wonderful idea."

"Yes, Gretchen." Arik said. "Youíll be closer this way."

"I know." Gretchen said. "Thatís why I agreed to the move."

"So when does all this happen?" Phoebe asked.

"Well." Kathryn said patting Tayrynís back trying to burp her. "We still have to go to Starfleet and inform them that weíre resigning."

"And we have to get one of your cousins to take over the house." Gretchen said.

"So youíre looking at about a month." Kathryn said.

"Thatíll work out great." Phoebe said. "Arik and I were talking."

She looked down at him.

"And weíve decided that we donít want a big wedding." Arik said. "Weíd rather just get married on a ship or on DS9."

"What is it with my daughterís eloping?"

Everyone laughed.

"Aw ,mom, itís easier." Phoebe said.

"And Chakotay and I didnít elope." Kathryn said grinning and grabbing her husbandís hand, giving it a squeeze.

"Well at least Iíll be present for one of my daughterís weddings." Gretchen said smiling. "Well, letís get down to some serious planning then. Shall we?"

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

"Well, if this is what you truly want." Admiral Hogestyn said looking up at Kathryn and Chakotay.

"It is, Admiral." Kathryn said, "it is."

"Well then." Hogestyn said, rising and looking at the other Admirals present. "Let me extend our wished for your happiness."

"Thank you, Admiral." Chakotay said.

The other Admirals rose and began offering their wishes for the future.

"Why donít we go for lunch?" Vice Admiral St. Pierre said. "And then we can discuss who will command Voyager now."

"I have a suggestion for that." Kathryn said as the group moved out of the room.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"And so, with the power vested in me by the United Federation of Planets." Captain Benjamin Sisko spoke, his deep voice carrying across the promenade. "I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride."

As Phoebe and Arik kissed, Kathryn looked past them and smiled at her husband.

"I love you." He mouthed, smiling adoringly at her.

"I love you too." She mouthed back.

The assembled crew applauded as the newlyweds continued to kiss.

"Ladies and gentlemen." Sisko said as Arik and Phoebe pulled apart. "I present, Arik and Phoebe Rega."

The applause sounded again as Arik and Phoebe walked back up between the row of people, followed by Chakotay and Kathryn, to Quarkís where the reception was being held.

Later that evening, Chakotay and Kathryn were in each otherís arms, dancing slowly and gazing in each otherís eyes.

"Phoebe was a beautiful bride." Kathryn said quietly.

"Yes she was." Chakotay agreed. "But my bride was and is even more beautiful."

Kathryn smiled and tightened her arms around him.

"Thank you, my love." She said and lifted her face to his for a soft kiss.

"Thank me later." He grinned as he caught her lips with his own.

"Oh I plan on it." She replied when they stopped kissing. She gave him a lush smile and moved her hands down to cup his ass. "Believe me, I plan it."

Chakotay grinned at her and then laughed as he pulled her closer.

"And what are you two laughing about?"

Kathryn and Chakotay turned to see Tom and BíElanna dancing beside them.

"So?" BíElanna asked again. "Whatís so funny?"

"Oh." Kathryn glanced at Chakotay with a huge smile on her face. "Inside joke."

"I guess that means we wonít be joining you for drinks later eh?" Tom said.

Kathryn blushed slightly as Chakotay grinned and nodded.

"Iíd appreciate that." Chakotay said.

"Youíre terrible." Kathryn said chuckling.

"Thatís not what you said last night." Chakotay said his grin spreading. He suddenly grabbed his shoulder as his wife slapped him. "Ow!"

"Serves you right." BíElanna said giving Kathryn a thumbs up. "What are we going to do with them?"

"Well, we did marry them, so I guess we should keep them." Kathryn said moving to stand beside BíElanna.

Chakotay looked over at Tom and then the two of them dropped to their knees in front of their wives.

"Oh thank you! Thank you! Thank you!" Chakotay intoned. "Thank you for keeping us."

"Yes, thank you. You are so wise." Tom said. "And so compassionate."

Kathryn not even bothering to hold back her laughter leaned towards BíElanna.

"Should we tell them that we canít live without them?" She asked in a teasing manner.

BíElanna grinned and shook her head.

"No." She answered. "Itíll just go to their heads."

Chakotay and Tom laughed as they clambered to their feet and pulled their wives into their arms.

"Tom, do you think we should tell these beautiful ladies just how much we worship and adore them?" Chakotay asked.

Tom looked at his wife and then back at Chakotay and Kathryn.

"I think they already know." Tom said with a grin. "I donít believe weíre very adept at hiding it."

"I think youíre right." Chakotay said, pulling Kathryn tighter into his embrace. He smiled down at her. "Have I told you yet today how much I love you?"

Kathryn smiled back, her eyes radiating love at him.

"Yes you have." She replied. "But you know I never get tired of hearing you tell me."

"And Iíll never tire of telling you either." He said. "I love you."

"I love you too." She said.

Tom and BíElanna watched happily as their commanding officers made no secret about their feelings for each other.

"I know weíve been witness to this sort of thing for the last eight and a half months." Tom said. "But I still find it strange seeing you two showing your feelings for each other. Especially after hiding them for so long."

Kathryn and Chakotay looked over at their young friends and chuckled.

"Is that a complaint, lieutenant?" Chakotay asked grinning.

"No, sir." Tom said, giving him a mock salute.

"We think itís wonderful." BíElanna said and then a slightly stunned expression lighted her face.

"Bíe? What is it?" Tom asked.

"Look over there." She indicated with a nod of her head.

Her three companions turned to follow her gaze.

"Oh, my!" Kathryn gasped.

"When did that happen?" Chakotay asked.

"Well, heís been in love with her for quite a number of years now." Tom said smiling.

"Youíve known about his and havenít said anything?" BíElanna said, swatting him on the arm.

"I didnít know anything concrete, except that he was in love with her." Tom explained.

"I wonder how long itís been serious?" Chakotay asked.

"Itís certainly a strange combination." BíElanna said.

They watched in silence as the couple in question danced. Their bodies extremely close, oblivious to everyone and everything else.

"I wonder how Harryís taking it." Kathryn said. "Heís had a crush on Seven ever since she came aboard."

"Well, it doesnít look like heís suffering too much." Chakotay said.

All four of them turned and saw Harry happily dancing away, holding one of the Delaney twins in his arms.

They laughed and grinned at each other.

"What is it about this crew?" Kathryn asked. "We canít find romance outside of the bulkheads of our ship?"

BíElannaís arms tightened around Tomís waist. They smiled at each other.

"Guess not." She said.

Chakotay pressed a kiss to Kathrynís temple.

"You always said we were more than a crew. That we were a family." Chakotay said. "Weíre just making sure we remain that way."

Kathryn looked up at him, unshed tears in her eyes and smiled softly at him.

Chakotay gave a slight nod of his head, indicating he understood.

They had informed the senior staff about their impending retirement the night before. Needless to say the crew had been shocked and a little upset but mostly happy for them. And later that evening, after the meeting, Kathryn had cried in his arms.

"Itís all right, Kathryn." He said. "Weíre always going to be a family."

"Chakotayís right, Kathryn." BíElanna said. "Thereís a special bond between this crew. Especially the senior staff. Nothing will ever change that."

"Never." Tom said.

Kathryn smiled at her husband and friends.

"Thanks, guys." She said. "Even though settling down is what IÖ we, want. Iím still finding it difficult,"

"Sheís afraid weíll lose contact with everyone." Chakotay said.

"Not a chance." Tom said and looked down at his wife, a question in his eyes. She nodded and he continued. "After all, we donít want our kid to grow up not knowing his God-parents."

"Are you..?" Kathryn asked a smile coming to her face.

"Yes." BíElanna said happily as Tom nodded his head excitedly. "Iím pregnant."

"Oh, thatís wonderful." Kathryn exclaimed throwing her arms around the engineer.

"Congratulations, Tom." Chakotay said, shaking the younger mansí hand.

They switched and Kathryn gave Tom a hug as Chakotay hugged BíElanna.

"Iím happy for you, BíElanna." Chakotay said, kissing her on the cheek.

"Thank you, Chakotay."

They returned to their respective partners, all smiles.

"So, will you two do it?" Tom asked.

"Be the babyís God-parents?" Kathryn asked.

Tom nodded.

"Weíd be honoured." Chakotay said squeezing Kathrynís hand.

"So, when are you due?" Kathryn asked, grabbing BíElannaís arm and leading her away from the men to sit at a table.

Chakotay looked at Tom.

"You realize." He said. "For the rest of the evening, itís going to be nearly impossible to separate them."

"Oh, yes." Tom laughed.

"Come on." Chakotay said, clapping Tom on the shoulder. "Let me buy you a drink."

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn lay back in Chakotayís arms with a sigh.

"Finally asleep?" He asked softly.

"Mmhmm." She murmured.

"Honey?" He asked. "Are you all right?"

She turned in his arms so that her head rested on his chest.

"Yes, Iím all right." She said, pressing a kiss to his chest. "Just pensive."

"And what are you thinking about?" He asked as he stroked her hair. "Or do I already know?"

He felt her smile against his chest.

"I take it thatís a yes."

"Yes." She chuckled and lifted her head to smile down at him.

"Everythingís going to be all right, Kathryn." He said, bringing his hand up to her cheek. "Our friends know where weíll be and they know they can visit us anytime."

"I know." She sighed. "What about Tayryn?"

"What about her?"

"Chakotay, she was born on a Starship. Sheís a space-baby." Kathryn said. "Will she be okay living planet-side?"

"She was fine on Earth." He said and then hugged her close. "Tayryn will be fine. After all, look at the hearty stock she comes from."

Kathryn nodded her head.

"I know, youíre right." She said. "Guess Iím being silly."

"No. Youíre not being silly." He said and tilted her face up to look at him once again. "Youíve been a Starship Captain for more than half your life. Itís only natural for you to be experiencing some doubts. To be scared."

"Iím not scared." She stated. "Iím concerned."

He gave her a look.

"Okay." She admitted. "Iím a little scared."

She snuggled closer to him and smiled lovingly down at him.

"But just knowing youíll be right there with me calms all my fears."

"Iíll always be with you, Kathryn." He said. "Always."

"I know." She smiled. "And I thank my lucky stars everyday. I love you."

"I love you more." He said, pulling her lips down to his.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

"Well, Tuvok, howís it feel to be Captain?"

"It feels no different then when I was a commander." Tuvok responded.

Kathryn and Chakotay laughed, the rest of the crew joining in.

Voyager was in orbit around Dorvan V and in less than two hours; Kathryn, Chakotay and their family would be transporting down to the surface.

Suddenly the sound of a metal utensil being tapped against a glass could be heard.

Everyone quieted down and turned towards Tuvok.

When he had everyoneís attention he began to speak.

"In less than two hours, I will be assuming command of this vessel. I am not replacing Captain Janeway. No one could. I am merely succeeding her." He said, pausing to consider his next words. "Very shortly, Captain Janeway and Commander Chakotay will be leaving us to start a new chapter in their lives. I know I speak for everyone when I wish them peace and long life."

The crew chorused and raised their glasses.

"To the Captain and Commander!"

Kathryn was then called on to give a speech. She demurred until Chakotay insisted.

"This is a day of mixed emotions for me. I am very happy for my friend and colleague and I feel very safe in the knowledge that Voyager will be getting an extraordinary Captain." She paused and reached for Chakotayís hand. "As Tuvok said, in less than two hours, Chakotay, myself and our daughter will be transporting to the planet below to start our new life together. And although I am a little sad at leaving Voyager and the family I have here, I look forward to the life I will be living with my husband and child."

She paused, her eyes sweeping around the room, making contact with those crewmembers sheíd commanded for the last ten years.

She looked up at Chakotay and smiled at him through the tears welling up.

He squeezed her hand and she continued.

"Both Chakotay and I wish nothing but the best for all of you on your upcoming missions. And all we ask, is that if youíre ever in the neighbourhood, please beam down and visit us."

Chakotay lifted his glass, followed by the crew.

"To the crew of Voyager." He said. "May the spirits guide you safely always."

Everyone toasted and then broke out in cheers.

The party quickly wound down and soon just the senior staff remained behind.

"That was a nice speech, Captain." Harry said.

"Thank you, Harry. Or should I say, Lieutenant Kim?"

Harry grinned.

"Captain?"

"Yes, Seven?" Kathryn replied turning towards her.

"I just wanted to say, that you will be missed." Seven paused. "I know it has not always been easy between us, but I would like to thank you for all your patience and understanding in helping me regain my humanity."

"Thank you, Seven and youíre welcome." Kathryn said giving the younger woman a hug. "Iíll miss you too."

"Captain, may I ask you something?" The Doctor asked, coming up beside them and standing next to Seven.

"Ask away Doctor."

"As you know, Starfleet has granted me autonomy over my program." He said.

"Yes."

"Well, I was wonderingÖ" he paused and then clasped Sevenís hand. "We were wondering, if before you officially resign. Would do us the honour of marrying us."

Everyoneís mouths dropped open.

"Married?! You two want to get married?" Harry exclaimed.

"Of course." Seven replied. "Is that not the logical course of action in a relationship where love has been admitted and consummated."

Everyoneís eyes widened.

The Doctor pulled on Sevenís hand, giving it a squeeze.

"Uh, Seven, my love." He said. "I donít believe our sex life is anyoneís business."

Chakotay, Kathryn, Tom and BíElanna shared a secret smile.

Kathryn stepped closer to them and took both their hands in hers. She smiled up at them.

"I would be honoured." She said.

"Thank you, Captain." They said together.

"In an hour?" She asked.

"That would be wonderful." The Doctor said looking at Seven who nodded.

"Where would you like the ceremony?"

"Astrometrics." Seven said.

"I see the two of you have discussed this."

"We have."

"Okay. One hour. Astrometrics. Everyone be there." Kathryn ordered.

Everyone nodded and left the messhall.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

 

Kathryn and Chakotay stood on the transporter pad, Tayryn squirming in her motherís arms. The senior staff stood around looking up at their former commanding officers.

Kathryn looked over at Seven and the Doctor, standing with their arms around each other.

"You two take care of each other." She said smiling at them through her tears. "Be happy in your love for each other."

"Thank you, Captain." Seven said smiling. (yes, actually smiling)

"Take care of yourselves." The Doctor said. "And donít forget to call us from time to time."

"We wonít." Chakotay said.

Everyone else offered his or her best wishes and good-byes.

Kathryn looked over at Tuvok, who was standing stiffly off to the side.

She looked up at Chakotay, who nodded at her and took Tayryn from her arms.

Kathryn stepped down off the transporter pad and walked over to Tuvok.

"Well, Captain." She began. "Voyager is now yours. Take care of her and her crew."

"I will most certainly do that, Captain." He replied.

"And donít be inflexible." She continued. "Remember to look at all the possibilities."

"Captain. There is no need to be concerned. I have served with you for over ten years and in that time I have learned much from you." He said and then raised his right hand in the traditional Vulcan salute. "I wish you and the Commander a long and happy life together. Live long and prosper."

Kathrynís eyes filled with tears again and she lifted her hand in a return of the salute.

"Live long and prosper my friend." She said and then stepped closer and gave him a hug, which he returned. "Take care of yourself. Iíll miss you."

"I will miss you also." Tuvok said softly enough for just her ears.

They stepped apart and Kathryn gave him a smile.

She slowly made her way back to the transporter pad and her family.

She looked around one more time at her former crew, who had become her friends and family.

"Good hunting." Chakotay said to the group.

Everyone smiled.

"Take care of yourselves." BíElanna said, her eyes filled with tears also.

"Energize, Mr. Kim." Tuvok ordered.

The transporter beam enveloped the tiny family and in seconds they were gone.

"Well." Tom said looking at the empty transporter pad. "Thatís the close of a chapter."

"Time to start a new chapter in Voyagerís history." The Doctor said.

"Shall we get underway, Captain?" Harry asked.

"Indeed, Mr. Kim."

Everyone filed out of the room, leaving Tuvok by himself.

"May all your dreams come true." He said to the empty room.

He closed his eyes briefly and then left.

 

=/\= =/\= =/\=

Kathryn and Chakotay stood holding each other and their daughter, in the front yard of their new home.

They looked up into the clear night sky.

"There she goes." Kathryn said as she saw the barest indication that Voyager had left orbit.

Chakotayís arms tightened around his wife.

"You all right?" He asked softly.

"Yes." She said and turned to face him.

Chakotay brought his hand up to stroke first Kathrynís cheek and then Tayrynís.

"Youíre sure?"

She nodded and smiled.

"This was my idea remember?" She said and he nodded. "I told you. As long as youíre with me, Iím the happiest woman in the universe."

"I love you." He said. "You and Tayryn are the most important people in my life. And I will devote my life to making you both happy."

"I know you will." She said and then a huge smile lighted her face. "Would you be willing to add another name to your list of people youíre devoted to making happy?"

He gave her a confused look.

"I donít understand."

She grasped his hand and pulled it down to rest on her abdomen. She allowed him a few moments to process what she was telling him.

Her smile grew as she watched his mouth open, then close and then open again, as his eyes grew wide.

"Are youÖ?" He stuttered in disbelief. "Are you telling me youíreÖ pregnant?"

She nodded and smiled through the tears in her eyes.

"How? When?" He asked his handing now moving over her belly.

"Well I know you know how it happened. You were there." She grinned. "According to the Doctor, I conceived a month ago."

"When we were on Earth." He said and then he threw his head back and laughed with joy.

"I take it youíre happy." She said.

"Very." He said leaning over to kiss her. "Very, very happy."

Kathryn tightened her one arm around him as they both supported their daughter.

"I am the luckiest man in the universe." He said. "I have a gorgeous wife. A beautiful daughter and a baby on the way."

He sighed happily.

"Something told me, ten years ago, when your beautiful face filled my viewscreen that first time, that I was destined to spend the rest of my life with you and loving you."

She smiled at him.

"I knew that moment I stepped between you and Tom and placed my hand on your chest, that there was something between us. And there always would be."

"I guess we owe the Caretaker a debt of gratitude." Chakotay said. "Although, I honestly believe that we would have found each other anyway."

"Fate?"

"Destiny." He corrected. "You are my heart and soul. You complete my life."

"And you mine." She said.

"I love you, Kathryn." He said. "I always have and I always will."

"I love you too Chakotay." She said. "With all my heart and all my soul."

Chakotay dipped his head and kissed his wife, his tongue sweeping through her mouth.

Kathryn returned the kiss, her hand traveling up to entangle in his hair.

It was a kiss filled with a lifetime of promises and love for a long and happy future together.

 -fin

 

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