LIfe With a Paris: Empty Dog House
B'Elanna leaned against the open doorway of her quarters for just a moment before stepping inside. Couldn't the Doc just make house calls? These trips to sickbay were killing her rather than helping her, especially with her due date only being two days away. Sickbay seemed to get farther and farther away each time she had to make her way there.
When Delta didn't show up immediately to greet her at the door, B'Elanna at first gave a sigh of relief. He was getting really big, and they hadn't yet managed to stop him from jumping which made it a bit hard on her these days. She moved to the sofa and sat down, again realizing that Delta hadn't made his way over to see her. She frowned.
There was no sound from her quarters, causing her to frown harder.
"Delta, come here."
When there was still no response from the dog, B'Elanna tapped her comm badge.
"Torres to Paris."
"Hey, B'Elanna, what did the Doc say?"
"I'm fine. Is Delta with you?"
"Nope. I just got off bridge duty. Heading for Sickbay now." Pause. "Isn't he at home?"
A cold feeling began to wrap long fingers around B'Elanna's heart, and she had to fight back the sudden tears that threatened to spill from her eyes. Silently she yelled at herself, "Crying over a stupid dog, how old are you, four?!", but for some reason the bad feeling seemed to just magnify.
"He's not here, Tom. I called and he didn't come!" B'Elanna's voice grew hoarse.
"Okay, relax. He couldn't have gotten far. We're on a closed-in ship, how much trouble could he get into?"
Images of her puppy walking into the shuttle bay, into the Delta Flyer, hitting controls by accident and speeding off into the darkness of space flashed before her eyes. Fresh tears sprung to life.
"You have to find him!"
"I'll have Tuvok notify his security teams. One of the patrols will find him."
"But how did he get out?"
Even though his wife couldn't see him, Tom shrugged. "He probably stood up on the door, and it mistook him for one of us. It's not a big deal, B'Elanna, relax. He probably went to the Hydroponics Bay. I'll tell the Doc I'll be a little late and start looking myself."
"Find him, Tom, please!"
Silently, Tom wondered exactly what was in the shot the Doc gave his wife that day, she was never this emotional. Aloud, he said, "Paris to the rescue. Missing persons is my specialty. Sit down and have something warm to drink, we'll be home before you know it. Paris, out."
Alone in the silence that she never expected to hear again, B'Elanna began to shiver. She sat down on the sofa once more, wrapping her arms around her stomach as she wondered where her puppy was, and what he was doing. He was never far from her side, he'd be alone in a strange place, with strange people all around. He must be so afraid.
"Computer, access internal sensors and locate any canine presence aboard Voyager."
"Unable to comply. Internal sensors are offline for regularly scheduled
"Computer, when will the internal sensors be active?"
"Internal sensors will return to online status in two hours, forty minutes, thirty-nine seconds."
B'Elanna brushed a hand across her eyes as she leaned back against the sofa, muttering, "The sensors were never offline more than an hour when I was in charge", but even grousing couldn't diminish her fear.
She was never going to see Delta again. She just knew it.
"Damnit, Tom, if we can't take care of a puppy, how are we ever going to raise a child?!"
Not even Delta was there to comfort her when, exhausted and scared, B'Elanna began to cry.