Title: An Underestimation
Author: Adam- firstname.lastname@example.org
Archiving: PKelite, PKSP, Tom Paris Dorms, and Elisabeth‘s site.
Disclaimer: Tom and Harry belong to Paramount.
Warnings: Growing Relationship between two men.
Summary: Just what is it about Tom‘s mother?
Beta‘d By Ren
Sebastian was the first to greet them, practically pushing Harry aside to begin working on Tom.
"Tom, I‘m Sebastian, Harry older brother. Its good to see you." Sebastian rubbed up against Tom, flirting obviously.
"Eh, excuse me." Tom said backing up from Sebastian, and moving behind the safety of Harry.
Anne and Grace laughed at how, for the first time, Sebastian was brushed off. Harry‘s mouth hung open at what Tom had done, but he turned slightly and put his arm around Tom‘s waist protectively. "Tom, I‘m Grace, I work at the animal conservation, in ‚New Japan.‘ It‘s nice to meet you."
"I‘m Anne." Anne spoke softly like she always did the quietist in the family next to Harry. "I work for ‚Federation Today‘" "Really?" Tom asked curious after finishing his greetings to Grace. "You know, my uncle is one of the senior members of the ‚board‘ on the Federation news. I could help you out a little. Maybe get you some big articles that will get you really noticed?"
"Tom, I.I don‘t know what to say.that would be fantastic, thank you!" She moved forward and hugged him, only pulling back when noticing Harry‘s angry glare.
"This is Christian." Harry introduced Christian, as he had no intention of introducing himself. Seeming to be checking Tom out before he spoke. The Diplomat inside him, always at work.
"Nice to meet you Christian. What do you do?"
"I‘m a junior diplomat." Christian answered roughly. "Oh, you know about the upcoming Romulan/Federation talks? I know you probably don‘t need it, but I could get you on the team of diplomats, if you‘d like?" Tom spoke; unsure or how Christian would take his offer. "You could really get me on that team?" Christian asked, unsure. His superior had promised him many important talks, but he had never delivered. "If you think you‘d be ready to leave in two weeks?" "Yes, of course." Christian rose to his feet, the excitement evident in his voice.
"I‘ll make sure you get a confirmation in your personal Comm files by tomorrow."
"Thank you, Tom!" Christian said with a smile on his face. "Well," Mrs Kim began. She beamed at Tom after seeing the happy smiles on her children‘s faces. "Thank you Tom for everything you‘re going to do for my children!"
"Maybe we could." She was interrupted by a loud, angry voice coming through the Comm badge that Tom was wearing.
"THOMAS EUGENE PARIS! YOU ARE THREE MINUTES LATE FOR DINNER! GET HOME RIGHT NOW! YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPEN‘S WHEN YOU‘RE LATE!" Tom‘s father said in an angry voice.
"I...I‘m sorry ‚admiral‘ I‘ll be right there!" With shaking hands he tapped his Comm badge, deactivating it.
"Well Harry, I guess I‘ll see you around campus?" Turning to Harry‘s parents, he continued to speak. "Mr Kim, Mrs Kim. It was nice to meet you." He spoke as he shook their hands.
"I‘ll see to it that what I promised is done by tomorrow." Turning back to Harry he planned to give him a long goodbye kiss, but his Comm badge chirped again.
"YOU‘VE GOT TWO MINUTES!" Then it cut off.
He leaned in and kissed Harry quickly on the lips then hugged him. Whispering in his ears "I‘m sorry" Before he ran out of the Kim house and back to the transporters.
(After Tom had left)
"His father sure sounded angry for him been a few minutes late didn‘t he?"
Anne said, breaking the silence.
"Yes, he did." Elisabeth agreed with her daughter. "I wonder what the meant when he said ‚you know what happens when you‘re late‘?"
"I don‘t know." Harry said, obviously upset by how Tom‘s father had spoken to him. "But I‘m sure it isn‘t nice."
Harry then turned and entered his old room, deciding to go back to the academy tomorrow.
Tom had sprinted all the way to the public transporters, and then from there all the way home.
He stopped outside the main entrance catching his breath, making sure he was in order. He was already late and didn‘t need to give his father any more ammunition.
Taking a few deep breaths, allowing his breathing to return to normal, he entered.
He sighed in relief when he saw his mother at the dinner table. If she wasn‘t there...his shakes increased at the thoughts running through his minds.
"Mom, dad, I‘m home." He said. He was home now, and the use of the name admiral was only used over the Comm and when anyone else besides family was there.
"Tom honey, welcome home. How was your day? Your dinner is been kept warm in the replicator. "
"Thanks mom." Tom said, so grateful his mother was home.
She had been in the hospital a lot recently. She had ‚Lakes syndrome.‘ Tom loved his mother so much. She was all he had. All his mother‘s side of the family had died. All of his father‘s side were like him, brutal, and completely dedicated to Starfleet.
He could never tell her what her husband had done to him. It would break her heart, and he would never hurt his mother, who he loved more than himself. She was the only person he could talk to, share things with. Without her, he doubted he would have made it through his childhood. Tom‘s mother had shoulder length, wavy-blond hair. Her eyes were a warm, hazel in colour, and her skin was pale, mostly due to the treatments she had been getting. Her voice was soft, and warm. Soothing, and serene. Tom had being soothed to sleep many times by his mother‘s sweet voice, singing songs and humming tunes that Tom did not recognise.
"Why not get your dinner and take it to your room?" She said. Knowing the relationship between her son and husband was not the best. "Sure mom!" He said, hugging her in thanks.
(Some Hours Later-The Paris Residence)
Tom had done what he had promised, and seen to it Christian and Anne would get what he said. He smiled to himself, happy that he had helped. He then shivered in sadness and fear. His dark room overwhelming. Allowing him to focus on the situation with his mother. He knew she was getting sicker, day by day it was if a piece of his kind, loving mother was taken away from him, leaving an empty shell in it‘s wake. The pain he felt, at the thought of losing his mother ran deep within Tom. He‘d almost dropped the academy. Wanting to spend as much time with his mother as he could. But, as always his father had not allowed it. Tom quickly took his thoughts away from the argument he‘d had with his father over that.
It was one of the few he had actually stood up to his father for. His mother meaning more to him than his fathers anger.
Finally lying down, he let sleep claim him.
(Early Next Morning)
The morning came too soon for Tom, as his father‘s gruff voice began his day. Saying how a true federation officer was up, without protest at the crack of dawn.
He sighed; knowing things would never change, and just decided to get out of the house.
"Mom." Tom began as he headed down stairs. "I‘m going over to a friends house."
Tom kissed his mother ‚Karen Paris‘ on the cheek and had a piece of buttered toast slipped into his mouth when he pulled back. "No son of mine is going to start the day without at least a little food inside him." She grinned.
"Yes Moom." He said, groaning jokingly.
"Listen honey." She spoke quickly, remembering something. "Can you come home for an hour at lunch time?" She leaned forward and whispered in his ear. "Your father will be out, and I have something for you." Tom nodded his head in agreement. "Anything for you mom, I‘ll be home at 12." Giving her a quick kiss on the cheek, once again, he headed out. (Harry‘s home 9:15am)
"Get the door, someone." Mrs Kim shouted to anyone and everyone in the house. She had her hands full with dough she was kneading. Preferring to make some things the old fashioned way. As usual everyone was still in bed. So holding her flowery hands away from anything she could cover in flour, she headed to the door, and activated it. "Oh, Tom! It‘s good to see you. I hope everything was okay last night?" She asked, concern evident in her voice.
Seeing Tom‘s eyebrows rise in curiosity, she decided to go on. "With your father, Tom. He sounded.upset last night."
"Oh, that?" Tom said, looking slightly embarrassed that she had mentioned it. "Yeah, it was fine." Tom grinned happily as he continued. "Mom was home."
"Want to help me in the kitchen Tom?" She asked, attempting to change the subject. "Harry‘s still in bed, as is everyone else." "What are you making, it smells good."
"Thank you Tom!" She said, smiling at the compliment. All she got off her family were questions like, why don‘t you just replicate it. "Tom," Harry‘s mother began once again. "Tell me about your mother. You seem close."
Tom‘s eyes lost focus on Elisabeth as he spoke of his mother. "Mom is special. The only person who‘s ever listened to me, understood may. Excepted me for who I am and supported me in whatever I did. I‘d do anything for her!" Tom said forcefully.
"Why were you worried about going home if your mother was there?" She asked, curiosity getting the better of her.
"Well.she‘s usually in the hospital. Mom has ‚Lakes Syndrome‘" Tom said, a few tears welling up. He was shocked with himself at how much he was sharing with this woman he had only met the day before. Harry mother remained silent as Tom continued to speak. "She‘s been in and out of hospital since before I could remember. I‘m not stupid. I know she‘s getting weaker. The Doctors gave her until the end of this year." Tears began to fall. "Three months. Three months and mom will be gone."
Forgetting the mess on her hands, she hugged the young man, who had so much baggage on him at such a young age, that it tore at her heart. She had picked up from what Tom had said that his mother was the only person he had, had to rely on through his life. The pain of losing the one person he trusted must be incredible. Harry‘s mother thought. Harry was in the doorway his hair ruffled. She put Tom into Harry‘s arms, and let her son guide Tom to his room.
"Shush, Tom." Harry soothed. "It‘s okay. Everything‘s okay." "Ha-arry. I-I did what I promised." Tom spoke through what were now ust hiccups, and a raw throat.
"Did what Tom?" Harry asked, confused.
"I did what I promised for your brother and sister." Oh Tom! Harry thought to himself. Thought to himself of how caring and generous this man was.
He had only heard the end part of what his mother and Tom were talking about. But it was enough to know the perfect Paris family, were no longer perfect in his eyes.
"I came to spend the morning with you if it‘s okay? I have to go home at lunch time to meet my mom, then James and the rest of the guys wanna meet for some shuttle testing."
"Well let‘s make this morning count then, huh?" Harry asked, a flare of arousal in his eyes.
Talking had ended as both men sprang back into a hungry passion, rekindling the flames of what was interrupted the night before. "Mum, don‘t those two ever stop?" She said as she walked into the kitchen.
Hearing the groans as soon as she left her room.
"Apparently not." Elisabeth laughed.
"Have you checked your messages this morning?" She asked, grinning. Something clicked in her head as she ran to check it. "He did it! He did what he said he would do. I‘ve got two key stories based around the Cardassian/Maquis dispute, and a recent first contact made by ‚First Officer Picard‘ with the Ferengi!"
She was beaming brightly, so bright in fact that her mother almost had to squint.
"I should go and thank him!"
"Anna." Her mother called.
"Oh, right, their doing the ‚wild thing‘ I‘ll thank him later."