ourselves back in the Alpha Quadrant as quickly as we disappeared from
it. There was a black
hole and we fell unexpectedly through it dropping out the other side
much to the Federation’s and our own amazement.
There was no scientific explanation anyone wanted to looked for
or offer before debriefings or even for sometime thereafter.
We were just home. How
did we know? What was our first clue?
Kathryn Janeway sat staring out the view port, she was bored, looking
for action, finding only a space void of everything beyond her ship
& stars, millions of stars, familiar stars.
. . We dropped out
of warp and the stars before us seemed to stand still.
She sat in her Captain’s chair leaning against one hand just
looking. Sitting up, not
speaking, she peered harder. Then
after standing she put her arm out to her side as if to steady
herself, and walked slowly toward the giant view screen, recognizing,
yet not completely surrendering to what she thought.
Her hands went to her hips; she turned her head to Tom Paris,
Voyager’s helmsman and spoke quietly to him.
Paris…tell me where we are.”
She spoke, her attention steadily on the screen.
Lt. Tom Paris
punched his control pad. His
face displayed a frown and he punched his control pad again.
He turned his head and looked up at the captain.
He lightly questioned knowing what she wanted to hear, but she
had questioned him first.
what I think it is, Mr. Paris?”
Her heart was racing as he acknowledged her, and the reality of
where they were finally sunk in.
a smile broke the plains of her face, “Set a course to earth,
the bridge remained standing, slackjawed and staring at the view
screen as Voyager jumped to warp.
first officer, suffering from a dose of protocol, wanted to remind the
captain that maximum warp was a bit over the Federation warp limit
within the Alpha quadrant, but seeing no signs posted and knowing this
particular captain as well as he did, deemed it a futile reminder,
after all, she had gotten them this far not playing by all the rules.
Seven of Nine
did not believe that anyone from her former collective remembered she
still existed. It was
almost two years now and not a word from anyone, with the exception of
now Admiral Janeway, whom she was allowed to visit one weekend a month
and Voyager’s former first officer, Chakotay who was instructing at
At first it
was all pomp and circumstance, parties and interviews upon their
arrival, but now it was all questions, the same questions week in and
week out. She was captive of who she was lead to believe she was.
It was the life she had been deprived of in her early
versus the Borg Collective at least with the Borg she did not have to
ponder any of this.
The glory was
over and the rest of the crew spread out through the quadrant. She was left to a solitary life no one could free her from.
Starfleet was the only world she was to know.
It was not so much what she wanted to know as much as what they
wanted to know about her and the Borg.
her daytime being escorted to and attending Starfleet Academy classes.
She would be graduating in less than 2 months.
She would be the first officer to successfully complete the
4-year program in 2 years despite the Dominion War.
She would graduate at the top of her class and at the rank of
Lieutenant. The three
years she spent aboard Voyager did have its merits.
The Captain she served under was actually the only reason she
was allowed attendance in the Academy.
Perhaps it was not as much about the captain as it was about
the people who had known and respected the captain’s father.
were spent at Starfleet Headquarters accompanied by Admirals,
scientists, psychiatrists, physicians and who ever else deemed
necessary to extract every micro-parcel of intelligence stored within
her. From 0200 hours to
0600 hours each day she regenerated in a room, infinitely smaller than
the cargo bay, with cameras and machines recording every brain wave,
keeping watch every minute. While
on Voyager there was only one person keeping watch during her
regenerations, but here on earth even the watcher was not to be
allowed that choice.
One month, 13
days and 13 hours before she would be handed her first assignment, she
was not sure she would even accept it, Seven of Nine had many times
thought she would resign her commission as soon as she received it.
Yet something also reminded her that she knew of no other life.
Star ships, wormholes, quantum singularities, and spatial
distortions were her life. Except the one weekend a month she spent with the Admiral.
received the communication from Admiral Janeway between classes. Chakotay hand delivered the padd as he always did when she
heard from the Admiral. Admiral
Janeway had plans to spend the weekend in Indiana on her mother’s
farm. Seven had been
granted clearance to attend with her, if she so chose.
Captain Chakotay would escort her to the transport station when
she finished her last class of the day.
She was to report back to Starfleet Headquarters by 2200 hours
to the communication with an efficient, yet grateful two words, I
accept. Seven handed the
padd back to the captain and headed off toward her Starfleet Protocols
and Regulations class. It
was the least valuable class she had been assigned in the last two
years. She had disliked
many regulations when on Voyager and she was now learning many more
inefficient means of being affective.
If there were one class to fail, however, this was not it and
Seven was more than aware of this fact.
Admiral and Captain Chakotay had lectured her on staying the course
while at the academy, and it did not stop her from arguing any point
she felt worthy. Then
that really was the point, was it not, the worthiness of the
regulation versus the argument?
last class of the day, she found the captain waiting patiently for
need to go back to headquarters for anything?”
as?” She asked
quizzically. She owned
nothing. Having not been allowed to keep any personal belongings.
She allowed her former captain to take all that was hers, what
little there had been.
then?” He smiled at her
and politely held his arm out for her to take.
They had not always maintained the best of relationships, but
at least it was something for her.
As they walked to the transport station they spoke idly.
heard from B’Elanna?” Seven
asked. Even though she
and the former chief of engineering had the most antagonistic
relationship aboard Voyager, they appreciated each other’s
back on Mars, probably been there two months now,” Chakotay
be nice to see her,” Seven spoke.
you’ll get the opportunity after you graduate,” He inferred.
She stopped walking and looked at him.
honestly think they are just going to let me go?”
She asked dubiously.
not?” He answered quite
assured, “You will have graduated.”
Captain, I do not feel that will make a difference to them.”
They started to walk.
they required that you attend the academy and you have done that. And quite successfully I might add! They asked you to commit to 2 years of debriefing and you
have done that I’m convinced. Starfleet
will grant you your freedom.”
She looked at
him now with reasonable concern.
There was no cause to disbelieve him, but still she did.
After all, he had not been the one left with no choices.
“Freedom is irrelevant.”
through the doors of the transport station.
It was the beginning of the weekend and the lines were long. He escorted her through another set of doors and down a
hallway to another door marked “Starfleet Personnel Only”. Once inside more transporters and no lines.
“You have a good time.” He said as she stepped onto the
platform, “And give the Admiral my regards.”
shall.” She answered as
she felt her molecules being displaced.
Janeway was at the receiving end of the transport.
“Hello, Seven.” She
spoke as the younger woman before her stepped down from the platform.
Kathryn’s mother?” Seven
questioned stiffly. She
tilted her head using her optical implant to note the resemblance.
I’m very glad to meet you! Kathryn
has spoken so much about you!”
She smiled as she pulled Seven into her maternal embrace.
It was the first and only physical connection that Seven of
Nine felt since returning to the Alpha quadrant.
“I am very
pleased to meet you,” Seven returned the smile.
“Where is Kathryn?”
how it is working for Starfleet and being an Admiral, she’s going to
be a little late.” Gretchen
answered, “Of course if it affords us time to get to know one
another then all the better.”
acceptable,” Seven agreed politely.
sure it is. Come then,
let’s go back to the farm, get you settled in and changed out of
that uniform! Perhaps
you’d like to help me fix dinner?”
dinner?” Seven asked
not understanding ‘fix’ in regards to food.
Gretchen laughed and shook her head.
replicate any food here. Everything
served in my home is cooked from scratch.”
I’ll show you instead!” And
they walked out from the transport station.
Admiral, it would appear that every one and their brother wishes to
have your ex-Borg drone,” Commented Admiral Paris as he leaned back
in his chair.
wouldn’t they?” Admiral
Kathryn Janeway answered him with a smirk on her face.
she is Borg.”
“No, she is
a human being, assimilated by the Borg, then severed,” Janeway spoke
I’m afraid there will be people who won’t want to work with
might come down to duty and preconceived notions for them.”
he spoke quite sure of himself.
has become an acceptable practice for Starfleet?”
Janeway asked with concern written on her face.
it has never been our policy to support bigotry!”
Admiral Paris blurted.
like everyone else they’ll just have to get to know her,” Janeway
people too much credit.”
them what I would want in return.
And I have found Seven of Nine to be quite a fine human being.
Probably more so than most people I know. She will make an excellent officer,” Kathryn Janeway spoke
“We have no
doubt in her capabilities. She
is quite phenomenal, but now we have the arduous task of placing
her.” He steered the subject down another path.
take her,” Admiral Janeway volunteered easily.
what with her?” He
asked knowing that Seven of Nine’s capabilities far exceeded the
Admirals current Starfleet requirements.
know, I’d find something for her, as long as she’s not put some
where to be misused or mistreated any longer.”
“ She has
never been misused, Kathryn, you of all people know that,” Admiral
Paris frowned. “Mistreated… what are you talking about?”
you call not allowing her any privacy for the last 2 years?
What do you call forcing a 24-hour a day schedule on her, or
not allowing her any contact with her former crewmates or family or
two years of debriefing?” She
inquired growing angry. “What choices has she been given?”
Katie. You know the
limitations were all necessary. I
went out on the biggest limb of my career for you and your Borg.
Besides it’s almost over and she’s done well for
herself.” He said doing
his best to smooth over ruffled feathers.
down immediately, after all this was the man who held Seven’s life
in his hands.
you do with her?” She
questioned needing to know the possibilities.
I’d like to see her go on to Braham's Theoretical Propulsion
Team. I think that’s
where her true talents lie and where the Federation and Starfleet
stands to gain the most.”
she would find that quite acceptable.
Now, what really has you so concerned?”
Necheyev and Hays,” he answered flatly.
think I’m going to like this.”
Janeway spoke as the feeling of dread crept into her voice.
She had her run-ins with both admirals before.
not.” He stated
like to keep her right here. A
desk job of sorts, keep her...”
continued lock and key? Paranoia
is not becoming of these Starfleet Admirals.”
Janeway quipped interrupting him.
but I don’t know if we can make a difference this time.”
Admirals sit on the academic board this year?”
She asked knowing what needed to be done and now why he asked
Admirals Hays, Necheyev, Admirals Picard, you and myself,” He
She asked in surprise. “How
on earth did I get so lucky?”
this is my last year, Kathryn. You’re
going to be taking my place.”
She said more as a statement than a question.
time for me to move on. I’m
retiring from Starfleet, lightening my load so to speak.”
He informed already quite resolved with his decision.
your intention for me to step in behind you on the Academy board?” She questioned.
there’s that, but more importantly I’m seeing that you step in
behind me in Starfleet Operations.
It’s time Kathryn and you know you’ve earned it.”
don’t know, Admiral…” She
started to reject half-heartedly.
know. And you also know
what is at stake if you don’t.”
He looked at her conveying what he’d already said with his
“I hate the
thought of giving up my traveling through the quadrants,” she
you’ll not be giving them up. You
can go anywhere you want, command anything you choose.
If you don’t step up when this is offered you might be giving
up your companion, though.” He
spoke with concern.
She heard the
reference in his voice, “What do you mean, companion?
I don’t believe I understand,” She asked alarmed.
the reason you didn’t take another ship, is she not?”
His face took on a fatherly expression.
A look witnessed on Edward Janeway’s face many times when in
conversation about the loves of her life.
“She is one
of the reasons, Sir.” Kathryn
stiffened feeling the conversation heading in a personal direction.
A direction she generally steered clear of.
I’m the oldest friend you have here.
I have watched you grow up, for crying out loud, it makes
little if no sense for you to think that you can hide your true
feelings from me.”
Kathryn Janeway was utterly mystified at how the conversation had
gotten to this point and with whom she was having it with.
This was a subject she would have never wanted to broach with
her own father let alone another Admiral.
“Sir, I” She started to speak, but he held up his hand as
if to say enough.
changed, Kathryn. Starfleet
has changed, the world, the universe is ever changing and you are now
back from many years in the Delta quadrant.
It’s time for you to make changes in your personal life as
well. I’ve also taken the opportunity to spend a great deal
of time with Seven of Nine in the last year.
Perhaps it’s something you should start doing as well.
Obviously you’ve missed a lot.”
“So let me
get this right, you want me to take your place in Starfleet
Operations. You also want
me to follow in your footsteps to the Academy board.
Then you want me to spend the next year or so with Seven of
Nine?” She asked purposefully missing his finer point.
to himself and shook his head at her thick headedness.
“Kathryn, if they offer you my job, please take it!
Then I want you to work out the feelings you have for Seven of
Nine. Now, if you’re
not going to admit to caring about her, I can tell you for a fact that
she cares greatly for you. Otherwise,
you can consider yourself on my shit list along with Necheyev and
Hayes!” He presented
back to her with a smile.
cares?” was all Kathryn
could say as she traced back through the recent year, over the
weekends she and Seven spent alone.
These were things she had always known, but would have never
acknowledged. Not to
herself, not to Seven and certainly not to this man sitting across the
desk from her.
We’re going to need Picard’s vote.”
He added snapping her back from her reverie.
thought as much, but how?” She
questioned, still rapt in the previous thought.
Enterprise will be in orbit tomorrow, I’m going to ask him for the
use of his Betazoid counselor, Deanna Troi.
I’d like her honest opinion of Seven before we’re faced
with the panel. Perhaps you and he could work something out?”
Admiral Janeway agreed with a slight smile playing on her face.
“Admiral Paris, may I ask for one more favor in regards to
Seven of Nine?”
feel you haven’t exhausted these?”
escorts, please. She’ll
not get lost between the academy and here.
And from now until she graduates she can leave the comforts of
Starfleet when she is not in class or in debriefing?”
order, Katie.” He
spoke. “I can’t see
any reason why not.”
She smiled at
him and spoke rising from her seat, “It’s late and I should have
been in Indiana hours ago.”
Admiral Janeway, you are dismissed!”
He stood with her. “Give
my regards to your mother and to Seven, if you will.”
Janeway left for the transport station she put a message through to
Admiral Picard and arranged for his counselor to evaluate Seven in
some nontraditional method. She
also arranged for a late week meeting between herself, Admiral Paris
to tell me that you have been imprisoned by Starfleet for the last two
Janeway asked with great concern as she gingerly placed the pie dough
into the buttered dish.
is not the word I used,” Seven reiterated hearing the elder
Janeway’s interpretation of their conversation.
same thing! There is no
such thing as a two year debriefing!”
Gretchen was scathing mad at the implication.
“And my daughter let this happen?”
“I do not
believe she was allowed…a choice,” Seven answered giving
consideration to where her captain must have stood.
“Oh she had
a choice alright! Here!
Pour that in here!” Gretchen
motioned to the bowl where Seven had finished mixing a strawberry
Admiral has assisted in making my stay as comfortable as possible.”
Seven spoke as she poured her mixture into the pie pan.
not the same as freedom and we’re talking about Admiral Janeway.” The elder Janeway spoke pointedly. “I will be speaking to my daughter about this later.”
me now, Mother,” Kathryn
Janeway announced tiredly as she entered the kitchen unaware of what
she was walking into.
Celsius, Seven.” Gretchen
gestured toward the oven. Seven
looked from one Janeway to the other suddenly unsure if this is where
she wanted to spend her weekend.
With some quick interpretation she adjusted the oven’s
Seven spoke directing her attention to the younger Janeway.
“It is good to see you. Was
it a long day?”
I’m glad to be home.” She
answered dropping her bag, then noting the look on her mother’s
face, “I think? What’s going on?” She asked as Seven looked down at her
Seven of Nine has just spent the last few hours explaining to me about
her two year debriefing.”
Gretchen started in and Kathryn felt the dread rising.
it’s not exactly like that, Mom.”
She spoke, “Then after dinner you can spend the rest of your
evening explaining what it is exactly like.
For now, however, go put your things away.
Dinner will be ready in a short while.”
help you Kathryn.” Seven
spoke as she untied her apron and held the door open, following her
upstairs to her room.
was not such a good idea sending you ahead without me?”
Janeway spoke somewhat tersely, as she shut the bedroom door
explained to her that there were few choices that could have been
made.” Seven tried to assuage.
talking to the wife and mother of an Admiral!
She knows the rules better than anyone.”
sorry Kathryn, if what I have said will cause you difficulties with
your mother.” Seven
lowered her head standing one step inside the door.
realizing that Seven felt worse than necessary, promptly changed the
subject. “No problems
getting here?” She
questioned the ex-Borg drone.
Chakotay dropped me at the transport and your mother was there to pick
me up. All as planned. However, I do not have an escort arranged for my arrival back
in San Francisco.”
There won’t be anymore escorts.”
Janeway spoke pleased to relay the news.
acceptable.” Was all
Seven had to say.
come and go as you please between classes and debriefings, also,” Janeway added.
imprisonment, as your mother has chosen to call it?”
were never imprisoned!” Janeway
of the last two year afforded me any choices, Kathryn?”
Seven asked then answered, “My one weekend a month with
Why now… they’re nearly finished with the testing and
prodding.” Janeway was
looking to find the answer in Seven’s face.
working up her voice to express the level of pain she was feeling,
“Because all I will have to show for this is a couple of pips on my
collar. Starfleet is hardly a life, I’ve made no friends, no family
has been allowed to make contact, no.
you’ll have a career! You’ll
have our friendship.”
and your friendship. I’m
finding what your mother and I have struck upon in the last three
hours to be more of a friendship than what you and I have had for the
last six years. At least she’s been honest with me.”
Seven turned and walked out of the room.
Janeway spoke up.
You must be kidding. .
.” But she was
gone. Back down to the
refuge of the elder Janeway. This
was going to be one long weekend.
Kathryn made a mental note to put her personal affairs in
were still burning bright over Starfleet Headquarters and there was
the usual hum of the generators.
“I say we lock her up and toss away the key.”
Came Admiral Necheyev’s reply.
we cannot do that. She is
not a prisoner and she will be a Starfleet officer in a
month!” Admiral Paris
Borg.” Necheyev spat in
“You do not
wear your hate very well,” he
“She is a
her birth records. I
think her family would object to your ethnic insensitivity also.”
family? She has not had
one visitor since Voyager’s return.”
not been allowed visitors since Voyager has been back, need I
remind you.” She looked
at him then with unease in her eyes.
your point?” She
“It was the
Collective, not Seven herself, she was doing only what was
reminded, “As she will do for Starfleet.
Besides you don’t know for sure that she was even there.”
don’t see your point?” She
asked again stubbornly.
probably needs her more right now than she needs Starfleet. And while I admit we’ve treated her more like a prisoner we
need her among us, in our ranks.
We need memory to protect us from the Borg and the Dominion.
You’ve seen the data she has assimilated.
You know we need this information more than you need your
don’t have to remind me of what she has assimilated.”
not thinking as a senior officer, Admiral.
I think you’re forgetting your place here.”
He reminded her wearily.
hard.” She spoke up,
“Losing my family to the Borg is beyond the scope of my
nothing that is not forgiveable and now you have the opportunity to
insure no one else will lose their family in the same manner.
I believe we have all the information we need for now. I’m asking that the debriefing be stopped.
She has rightfully earned it.”
has one month left. We’ll
still keep an eye on her. The
debriefings are done and the escorts are done.”
“It is not
your decision to make alone.” She
He pushed a
small piece of paper across the desk for her to read.
As she read, a frown creased the anger in her face and then
quickly reverted back. “You
went over our heads?” She
questioned, now visibly disturbed.
how it’s to be now?” She
stood by your decisions since the ex-Borg arrived.
She has done everything we have asked of her. She has earned my respect and my assistance.
I suggest you dig a little deeper with the cadet.
You’ll find her remarkable if you give her half a chance.”
she spoke knowing
she had just lost the battle.
need to respect my decision.” He
sighed, shaking his head thinking this has to be one of the most
stouthearted women in all of Starfleet Command.
He knew, if nothing else, she would obey the decision.
this coffee is marvelous!” Kathryn
remarked as she sat sipping from her cup. They were both sitting on
the porch swing, looking out over the serenely open fields of the
can’t replicate it?” Her
mother inquired with a smile on her face.
“No and I
don’t think I’ll ever be able to.”
make it for you.” Gretchen
tried so many times…what do you mean Seven can make it?”
graduation.” Her mother
spoke. “I just assumed
she would live with you.
anything about her coming to live with me?
Janeway asked trying to sound casual.
will she go, dear?” Gretchen
asked, trying her best to back her elder daughter into a corner.
depends on where she’ll be stationed.”
depend on where you station her.”
Her mother maneuvered.
will have nothing to do with. . .”
you will have everything to do with it.
You managed to get her into the academy and through it all in
two years time. I can’t
imagine you doing that for just anyone and I cannot imagine why, now
that it’s almost over you don’t seem to care what happens to
her?” Gretchen fired
away. “She needs
stability, a home, a family.”
Kathryn sat opening her mouth then closing it.
mother, Kathryn. There
isn’t much you can hide from me.”
appears then I’ve hidden something from myself!
What are you talking about?”
“How do you
feel about her?” Gretchen
went straight for the jugular.
“How do I
feel about her?” Kathryn
repeated not sure of how to answer.
do you feel about her? Truthfully.”
Her mother started again.
“I’ve sat here for the last year listening to you talk
about this woman while you were in the Delta quadrant then while she
worked her way through Starfleet’s new penal program.
I’m interested in hearing how your intellect would define
your feelings versus what I’ve heard from your heart.”
mouth fell open uncontrollably. First
Admiral Paris and their conversation earlier, now her own mother was
looking for answers to questions she hadn’t even asked herself, at
least not yet.
Where, might I ask, is all this coming from?”
spending the last few hours with a wondrous, extremely sad, lonely and
scared young woman.” Her
mother admitted softly, “Honey, a mother knows what a mother
something I’ve given any thought to.”
Kathryn answered defensively. “My career keeps me pretty tied
so much like your father.” Gretchen
spoke, thinking back to the past.
“If it’s not right in your face you’re not likely to deal
with it. Especially if it
doesn’t involve Starfleet.”
“Is that so
bad?” Questioned the
younger Janeway modestly.
not, but you miss so much of what life offers and I, for one, don’t
want you missing out on whatever this could bring.”
Smiling into her daughter’s eyes, she knew she had reached
her. The rest of it was
all up to Kathryn.
Mom.” Kathryn smiled
back, her eyes finding movement in the field that panned out in front
of them. She watched as
Seven came into view. “I’m
gonna go take a walk, do you mind?” Kathryn asked standing up.
time, dear.” Her mother
offered. “I’ve a kitchen to tend to.”
had it all started? The
point in time when she realized how she felt versus how she thought
she should feel. It was
in the Delta quadrant when the first recognition of her desire became
apparent. She’d folded
those feelings away so neatly that, had her mother not been going
through her mental and emotional drawers, she might have misplaced
walking through the field, working things out in her mind. She felt so exposed, but why?
She knew she there were feelings.
It wasn’t like there was anyone else in her life, presently.
As a matter of fact there had been no one in her life for years
accept Seven. She’d
become her friend, confidante, sounding board, and greatest challenge.
She instinctively raised her hand to her chest as her thoughts
struck her, as the corn suddenly parted next to her and Seven stepped
into view. A smile
flourished on her face.
“We need to
talk.” Kathryn said as
she offered her hand to the young woman.
Seven questioned, still experiencing some psychological wincing
from their earlier conversation.
Starfleet, how you feel, how you feel about me, how I feel about you,
me, and my mother.” She
appear this could be another of our long philosophical discussions.”
Seven entertained, “We have not had one in quite some time.”
long time, indeed. Come
on let’s walk down to my favorite getaway.
It was my hide-out when I was younger, I’m thinking I need
some of that comfort right about now.”
us to go and hide?” Seven
willow tree looked like a billowing green wig.
The long whips flung down to the ground creating a definite
curtain of secrecy. The
deep underground water sources in the area kept most vegetation well
nourished and this tree hadn’t suffered at all in the years passed.
Spring’s gentle breezes held a touch of warmth as they
rustled the draping branches of the tree.
here to hide as a child?” Seven
tone of Seven’s voice Kathryn smiled.
She sat down at the base of the willow then extended her hand
to Seven. “Please
Kathryn started, “I need to talk about how I feel, how I have
now?” Seven questioned.
whatever reasons the gods have, it has been brought to my attention
that my life is not as it should be.”
She chuckled to herself noting the conversation with the
Admiral and then her mother.
“So how do
you feel?” Seven asked,
not sure she understood where Kathryn was coming from.
start with how I felt when I severed you.”
her implant at the statement, her eyes searched Kathryn’s.
“That was a long time ago.”
“For me, it
happened just yesterday. I
saw you for the first time. I
saw a Borg drone but felt the human in you.
I couldn’t leave you behind.”
brought me along for the ride?”
Seven asked touching upon her wry side.
looked at her, wondering what else she had missed along the way about
this woman. “You
didn’t come willingly, no in fact we clashed much at first.
It was a battle of the wills mostly.
It took me quite some time to uncover my need to conquer you.
To see you as you should be, certainly not as I’d found
to conquer me?” Seven
questioned the meaning of her words.
“At first I
wanted you to find your origins.
I knew if given it, you’d eventually regain some of your own
humanity. What I
didn’t know was, how great the bond would become between us.
I saw myself as your parent, your mentor; the person
responsible for your well being and took it on without question or
time though it changed and the maternal feelings crossed a boundary
that I couldn’t get back across.”
She looked at Seven.
Her eyes deepening blue as she leaned into Seven’s personal
space. “I knew I had
fallen in love with you.”
Seven sat in
awe, hearing the words she had longed to hear.
buried those emotions. I
couldn’t be the captain that I was and love you as well.
I buried them so deeply I forgot they existed.”
have now recently unearthed them?”
they weren’t really hidden from anyone but me.”
She answered, “My mother shared this fact with me this very
evening, as well as Admiral Paris earlier today.”
does this all mean?” Seven
wondered aloud. Her heart
jumped nervously, she instinctively started bracing for the hurt.
you, Seven. I have always
been in love with you. But
this does us no good if you don’t feel the same way.”
never concealed my feelings, Kathryn.”
Seven spoke. “You
are the only person I have ever trusted.
You are the only person I have needed.
You invaded my life from the moment I first saw you.”
doesn’t mean that you love me.”
Janeway grappled with Seven’s response.
trying her best to express her emotions.
She pulled her knees up to her chest as she spoke, “You make
me ache so, Kathryn.” She hugged them tighter trying to keep her
heart from exploding. “
What else could it be but love?”
Janeway said as she ran her hand lightly across Seven’s hair,
“I don’t want to cause you any pain.”
to slide their way down to Seven’s trembling lips.
“Your words show me little comfort.” She spoke through the
pain. Janeway rose up on
her knees as she turned toward and looked comfortingly into Seven’s
will have to show you.” Kathryn
spoke, her voice a husky whisper as she brushed her lips tenderly
across Seven of Nine’s. She
pulled back, searching in Seven’s eyes for the right to exist here
in this space with her. “I’ve never felt like this for anyone else.
You must believe me.”
the distance between them with another kiss.
She could feel Seven’s heartbeat and her breath quicken. “She has to be with me,” Kathryn thought to
herself, “I know that now.”
suddenly, more to catch their breaths and to look at what they both
Seven initiated the kissing, again and again, as she unclasped the
buttons of Janeway’s shirt. Fingers
flirting against the warm smooth skin of Kathryn’s neck, hungering
for more, wanting, savoring. She
pulled back to admire the auburn hair of the woman who had taken
command of her heart and though the sun had long since moved to the
west, she saw how their rough needy kisses had darkened Kathryn’s
unbuttoned shirt half off her shoulders, Kathryn pulled it completely
open, giving herself to Seven. Seven’s
eyes moved down and took in the porcelain pink areolas.
woman pressing back against the trunk of the willow, moved in closer
running her finger across Kathryn’s open mouth - lips dark wet
desirous - then down to her nipples as if she were painting them.
Cupping Kathryn’s breast in her hands, feeling the warmth of
the flesh unrecognized by her sensual code impeded her synaptic
Janeway moaned languidly.
Seven agreed pinching Kathryn’s nipples between her fingers; they
hardened, the abrupt transformation igniting a blaze of desire deep
weak, Kathryn grabbed onto Seven to avoid falling but Seven,
struggling with her own needs, tumbled with her, rolling together on
the ground. When they stopped Seven on top, they’re breath heavy from
the fall and from the release of their great burdens of want.
beginning to envelope them now and the sky winked with the first hint
of stars. Earth’s moon
visible against a blue silk flower sky in the east, blending
eventually with the pinks and oranges still emanating from the downed
sun to the west. Completely
and utterly seduced, Seven reached for the button then zipper on
Janeway’s slacks and moves them down over Kathryn’s hips.
Without any other thought, Seven’s impatient lips sought out
the other set of plush lips to kiss.
darkness, Seven moves. Kathryn
pulsing and slick, creamy and delicious.
her with her fingers then sucks her in as she hears her name whispered
and cooed from above. Lost
within the depths of Kathryn, space and time no longer exists.
The shelters of the willow tree a vacuum. Her tongue spirals around Kathryn as she arches up to her.
She sinks into her loins, having her over and over again.
She then lifts her head to look deep into the vast sea of
Kathryn’s eyes. She breathed her in as she closes her eyes and whispers,
“You are beautiful.”
fingers, Seven thrusts into her.
Then again, three fingers moving in and out, slowly…surely.
Kathryn curves blissfully into the pleasure as she feels
herself blending with Seven. Grabbing
Seven’s hair, Kathryn pulls it out of the austere bun and it
cascades around her face. Smoldering
blue eyes meet hers from her own depth.
It’s the absolute ecstasy from this sight and Seven
quickening her desires that push Kathryn over her edge.
She comes again and again and again beneath the steady branches
of her childhood willow, beneath a trillion stars, beneath her heart,
her life, her future, beneath Seven.
Seven sat in
debriefing room one for over an hour and still no one had come. Not one Admiral, not one doctor, not one psychiatrist.
Their tardiness was inefficient, though she had nothing else to
do but wait. Then
finally, a small woman with long curly dark hair entered the room.
no debriefings scheduled tonight.”
She spoke looking at Seven.
always debriefings scheduled in this room.”
Seven answered evenly.
tonight!” The small
woman replied, “Who did you think your debriefing was with?”
night is someone different. Perhaps
it is you?” Seven
quirked her implant covered brow, looking the small woman over.
small woman chuckled, “Not me!”
are you here?” Seven
questioned shortly, not believing her.
walked by this room several times now and saw you sitting.
I checked the room schedule, found nothing and wondered why you
were here, that’s all.”
“I am here
for my nightly debriefing as I have been for the last 23 months 19
days and 10 hours.” Seven
woman frowned as she asked, “Why?
Why would you have been required to do that?”
have been previously directed.”
Seven spoke, looking at the woman and wondering how relevant
this all was.
for you.” She answered
then offered, “Would
you like to go get some coffee or hot chocolate?”
“I do not
think I should leave.” Seven
replied, now uneasy. The thought of being hunted down ran through her
mind and did not appeal to her.
last patient is a no show and if you were to have had a debriefing,
whoever scheduled it is a no show.
Let’s get something to drink!”
“You are a
questioned again leery of this woman.
ship’s counselor.” She
replied. “I’m sorry I
did not introduce myself. I
am Deanna Troi of the U.S.S. Enterprise.”
She extended her hand to Seven, “And you are?”
“I am Seven
of Nine formerly the Tertiary Adjunct to Unimatrix Zero – One of the
Borg Collective and the former head of Astrometrics of the U.S.S.
Voyager.” Seven shook her hand and sensed nothing to fear.
“I believe I would enjoy a cup of tea.”
now as she spoke, “Yes, that would be fine and I know a little place
where we could get to know one another?”
from where she sat. “I
am not customarily allowed to leave Starfleet Headquarters unless I am
escorted by a representative.”
there’s a first time for everything!”
Troi laughed as they walked out of the debriefing room.
“Besides I believe I would be adequate representation.”
hours at a little café not far from Starfleet Headquarters. They talked of their love of space, adventure and captain’s
they have served. Seven
took Deanna back to the Delta quadrant in several recountings and
Deanna showed Seven a friendship that required nothing in return.
first evening, Deanna visited Seven nearly every day. She met Seven for informal dinners, cinematic programs or
taking in the ocean-front sights.
Whatever Seven wanted to do or whatever Deanna could think of,
they would go anywhere, do anything whenever the time afforded them.
There was a strong sense of friendship, unusually strong for
Seven of Nine anyway.
evenings that Deanna could not meet Seven, Seven would arrange to be
with Kathryn and they would spend nights developing their passion and
love for one another until Seven would have to report back to
Starfleet Headquarters to regenerate.
“I see no
reason why this young woman should not be completely exonerated”.
Admiral Picard declared. His
past with the Borg allowed him to speak from experience.
worried the Borg will seek her out, Admiral.
She will continue to be a beacon signaling them.”
Admiral Necheyev answered.
not come for me as of yet.” He
replied brusquely, his jaw set. “After
all I remain Locutus of Borg.”
“Yes - yes
you were - Borg.” Necheyev
eyed him with her distaste, “But...”
what?” He asked
angrily, “We’ll make allowances for some, but not all?
Since when do we rewrite the rules to suite our own personal
“I am not
speaking solely for myself here Admiral!”
“What is it
then? I don’t believe
anyone else here has a problem with this cadet moving on,”
around at the faces of the other members of the academy board she
realized no one else had much to say and things appeared to have come
to an impasse. 400 cadets
would be graduating and this last one had brought great debate.
Admiral Necheyev realized it was a mute point and conceded as
she dropped her head. She knew she was out voted.
Not one other person held the same disdain for the Borg and she
wondered how worth it it truly was.
She sighed, “I vote Braham’s Theoretical Propulsion.”
the vote.” Admiral Hayes spoke up having tired of the age-old
argument and a prior meeting with Picard.
“I cast the
third and deciding vote.” Jean
Luc Picard spoke loudly. “Now,
how about dinner on me?” He
offered his smile to all that sat around the table with him.
Kathryn Janeway begged off the dinner invitation, but shook the mighty
Picard’s hand. She also
knew that, had he not shared some of Seven’s experience, history
would have written itself differently.
After the goodbyes were extended she headed toward the elevator
and pushed the button for the 17th floor.
Exiting the elevator, she walked the hallway until she came to
room 1709 where she stopped and knocked.
Came the command. She
opened the door to the most beautiful creature in the universe.
with me?” She asked as
she stepped into Sevens arms.
“Is that a
command, Admiral?” Seven
asked gazing down into the darkening eyes.
darling, I’m giving you a choice.”
Kathryn Janeway smiled as she leaned up and kissed her mate.
shall comply.” Seven
answered back as she deepened the kiss.
speaker announced, “Annika Seven of Nine Hansen!”
And the applause that followed was loud. She walked across the stage, accepted the rolled paper and
turned to smile, if one could call it such, to the audience. Once again, the applause came as if the ceremony were only
for her. In the audience
there was one loving face that held the proud honor of knowing that
the woman of her heart had just accomplished one giant step for
herself in humanity. “Lieutenant
Hansen.” Janeway spoke
to herself as she applauded, smiled and cheered her lover of 1 month
13 days and 7 hours.
thought she would have succeeded.”
Captain Chakotay spoke as he also applauded.
because you never had the trust that I had in her.”
right, Admiral, I didn’t and I stand corrected.
She is going to make a fine Starfleet officer.”
point out that she made an excellent officer in the Delta quadrant.” Tuvok, having traveled all the way from Vulcan, logically
“She was a
pain in the ass in the Delta quadrant!”
B’Elanna added laughing as she watched her friend’s
They had all
come, Tom and B’Elanna Paris, Harry Kim and even Deanna Troi,
Seven’s new-found friend from the U.S.S. Enterprise.
Admiral Janeway had pulled strings to insure all of Voyager’s
former senior staff was present.
Pulling strings was easy now, having received another pip in
her own ceremony several weeks ago after a long time friend and mentor
retired, then being appointed to his position.
The party to
celebrate afterwards was held at the home of Gretchen Janeway in
Indiana. She would settle
for nothing less. Kathryn
had wanted to celebrate Seven’s accomplishment in San Francisco but
realized that the guest list exceeded her own and now also Seven’s
watching her lover as she walked around her mother’s front yard
talking to her guests, her friends.
“When does she report to the propulsion group?”
Deanna Troi asked startling Janeway out of her revelry.
another month.” Kathryn
answered with a smile, “Did I thank you for all you’ve done over
the last month?”
several times, and as before, it was all my pleasure.”
Deanna offered. “I
think there are a couple Starfleet Admirals that could use my services
chuckled at this statement thinking it to be true.
“I doubt you’ll get them to admit it, but hopefully
they’ll not give us too much to worry about moving forward.”
Troi answered. “Do you know what Seven has planned for the next month?”
played across Janeway’s face. “We
plan to spend some much needed time together.”
plan on leaving our San Francisco residence, at all.”
Seven added, having walked up on their conversation, looking
innocently from one woman to the other.
before I leave earth we could all get together for dinner?”
Troi asked slightly embarrassed at Seven’s forthrightness.
us a call, I’m sure we’ll want to venture out from time to
time.” Janeway answered with a sly smile.
“I will do
that!” Deanna replied smiling. “Now, if you would excuse me?” as
she held up an empty wine glass and walked toward the porch.
enjoying your party, darling?”
Kathryn questioned the magnificent woman standing next to her.
She slid her arm around the ex-Borg’s waist.
“Yes, it is
very nice to see and speak, once again, with all my friends.” Seven
responded moving closer. “But I cannot wait until we get home.”
like for us to spend the night.”
“Do we have
a choice?” Seven
“Yes, darling, we
do.” Kathryn looked up
at the woman she loved knowing that there would now be many choices.