The Power of Love:  Meetings and the Bay
By O’goddess woman... a.k.a.  Erin Alpert

This one is dedicated to Dream, who over the little time I’ve known her, has become one of my best friends, and Chessie, my dog, who is sooo cute... Her full name is Chesapeake, and is a beagley. Ahh.. yes.. the Chesapeake Bay... it’s reeeaaaallllyyyyy biiggg... I live somewhat near it, around the DC suburbs area place.. in Reston (Well, not exactly, but never mind) I don’t live near to Baltimore, but it’s a great place to go! In fact, I went this weekend! I brought my Tommy and Bella action figures... and my cousin almost threw them in the bay... and me along with them!!!

“Tom, I still say this is a stupid idea,” B’Elanna told him as they made
their way toward the holodeck, for Tom’s little plan.
“Oh, come one, ‘Lann, we never really did have a honeymoon,” he protested.
“Well, I certainly had fun,” she smiled at him with an evil grin.
* A honeymoon?  Why is he asking me to do this?!? I hate all these Earthy things.  Maybe it could be fun after all, * B’Elanna thought.
“So did I, but this will be fun too.”
“I hope so.”
“Anyway, with the new ship and all, this will have to be cut short... maybe down to one day.”

The doors slid open, and the couple walked in, hand in hand.  There were tall buildings every where, “Sky scrapers” as they were called.  There was harbor, boats, and lots of other things, including a oddly-shaped, partially glass building.
“Where are we going?” She asked, * This place doesn’t seem very romantic...
“See over there,” he pointed to the glass-building, “that’s it.”
“What is it?”
“It’s the National Aquarium in Baltimore.”
“An aquarium!?!? Why?”
“Trust me on this one, it’ll be fun.. it’s really great, on the Chesapeake Bay, too.”
“Oh.. joy,” she nearly snorted in sarcasm.

They ran over toward the building and surrounding area, dodging cars, with drivers who were cursing at them.
“Damn,”  She muttered, hen they finally crossed.
“Let’s go,” Tom headed for the door, and the guard asked for their tickets. He showed them, and they walked in...

They spent most of the day exploring the place... but the highlight.. was most definitely, the dolphin show.  They sat up front, in the “Splash Row,” and boy.. did they get splashed!  At the end of it, they were  * soaking  wet! *

Leaving the aquarium, Tom commanded, “Computer, level two.”
The air shimmered, and they appeared by a large bay.  It was a quiet place in a clearing near the woods. There was a picnic blanket set up  near the water’s edge.
“Oh, Tom, it’s perfect,” B’Elanna sighed.
“I hoped it would be.”
They sat down, and had a small meal... dinner, it would probably be. And afterwards, they just sat, together, watching the sunset.

B’Elanna looked up at Tom, while he was just laying next to her, watching the sunset calmly.  She wondered if he would ever find out about her secret.

“I hear,
The secrets that you keep,
When you’re talkin in your sleep.
I hear,
The secrets that you keep,
When you’re talkin in you sleep.”
??? (don’t  know the singer)--??? (Or the song title)

Later that evening, a small shuttle came to take the Infinity’s crew members to their new ship. Everyone had 6 hours to pack. Tom and B’Elanna managed to get nearly everything they owned into three suitcases... they didn’t own much.

When they boarded the shuttle, they sat next to a young woman, with strange greenish-blue eyes, dark hair.  Her eyes were large, like most Betazoids, but they almost always had chocolate eyes.  She was staring out into the distance, then turned her head to look at B’Elanna.
“Hi,” the woman smiled, calmly.
“Hi,” B’Elanna smiled, trying to be nice.
“I sense feelings of tension, nervousness.  Are you a little worried about this post?”  She asked.
B’Elanna looked at Tom, who was nearly asleep, leaning against her shoulder.
“It’s not just that.”
“What else is it?”
“I.. can’t talk about it, not with you... you’re a complete stranger.”
“Well, I understand that. What’s bothering you about this post, then?”
B’Elanna looked around, “Well, I guess, I’m feeling a little inferior.. I
was the Chief Engineer, and now, I’ve got a boss to look up to.. I guess, I’m worried that she’ll hate me.”
The other woman looked at B’Elanna, studying her up and down, “I think that she’ll like you just fine.”
“And what makes you think that?” She snorted, softly.
“Allow me to introduce myself: Tyrana Ateki-- Chief of
Engineering--Lieutenant, Junior Grade.”
“You’re Ateki?” She nearly screamed in shock.
“Yes, that would be me, Tyrana Mael Ateki. My middle name is pronounced May-El. So don’t say ‘Mail’ I’m not a letter. Or a guy. May-El” 
“Well, hey boss, I’m B’Elanna Torres... and he’s,” pointing to Tom, “My
“Mr. Torres?”
“Paris, actually... Torres is my.. maiden name.. I just kept it...”
“Oh, I see.  And, do you mind if I ask you a few.. personal questions.... I’d like to get to know some of my fellow Engineers.. and maybe make some new friends.”
“Sure, shoot.”
“You have a very unusual face, very pretty, but.. what species are you? I’ve never seen anything like it..”
B’Elanna pondered if that was a compliment, or an insult, then replied, “I’m half-Klingon, half-human.. my father was human.. my mother, Klingon.”
“That’s great, I’m Betazoid, I’m single, I’m 24 years old, I’m good friends with the Captain, so I don’t have to suck up that much... anything else you want to know?”
“No... not at all.. not for now at least..”
“But there is one more thing I’d like to know about you..”
“Do you have any kids?”
“No,”  B’Elanna replied a little too quickly.
“I sense something... some.. emotion.. hidden behind that...”
“It’s a long story..”
“I’m a good listener...”
B’Elanna looked cautiously over to Tom, who was no fast asleep, before explaining the story to Tyrana.. her first friend on the Infinity...


Don’t ask why she told Ty before she told Tom! Ty is my RPG person.. I’m special!

Part 22--Copyright  April 1997--Erin Alpert
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