Disclaimer - Paramount and Viacom own the characters from Voyager, although they didnít often treat them right. The story line belongs to me.
A special thanks to: My friend and
editor of all my stories, Mill3rs.
As the Captain and Tuvok entered
the brig, Mike Ayala stood up from his station. Although he had been on
the Maquis ship, he and Tom had become close friends in their time together
on Voyager. "Captain, Lieutenant, how is Tom doing?"
"Ensign Paris is doing well, Lieutenant.
The Doctor stated that he should be released from sickbay tomorrow." Tuvok
answered his officer. "Please lower the force field."
The energy crackled as the force
field in front of the small cell was lowered. Captain Janeway and Tuvok
entered and Morrow stood to meet them. He stood at attention but did not
speak. Janeway looked closely at him and wondered again how he could have
taken part in the brutal attacks on Tom Paris. ĎTom is right. Heís so young,
as are so many of the former Maquis crewmembers. To be so far from their
homes and families at such a young age is hard on them all.í "Crewman,
how are you? Your injuries are thoroughly healed?" she asked.
"Yes, Captain, Iím fine now." He
answered quickly and glanced away in embarrassment.
"Crewman Morrow, you have been accused
of assault with a deadly weapon on a superior officer. What do you have
to say for yourself?" Janeway asked.
"Captain, I have no d..defense for
my actions. I believed Darwin without determining if what he was saying
was true. I aided him in several attacks on Ensign Paris and c..cracked
the entry codes to his quarters so Darwin could go in and trash them."
Morrow answered in a low, shaky voice but stood tall and looked directly
at the Captain.
"Crewman, Ensign Paris has spoken
on your behalf and requested leniency for you." Tuvok stated.
"Lieutenant Tuvok has also put in
a good word for you. He told me how you protected Ensign Paris in the cave
and cared for him until the away team arrived. Your offenses are quite
serious and you must still face the consequences of your actions." Janeway
stated in a steady voice with a sympathetic look on her face.
Morrow stood at attention and looked
straight at the Captain. "Iím prepared for my sentence, Captain."
"Crewman James Morrow, you are guilty
of numerous assaults on a superior officer. It is has been recommended
that I be lenient in handing down your sentence. I have listened to both
Lieutenant Tuvok and Ensign Paris and have taken these recommendations
into account. I hereby sentence you to 60 days in the brig to be followed
by 60 days confinement to quarters when not on duty. In addition, you will
lose your replicator rations for the 120 days of your sentence. These rations
will be placed in Ensign Parisís account. Is that clear?" Janeway stood
looking up at the young man before her.
"Yes, Captain, very clear." Morrow
let out his breath but continued to stand at attention as Janeway and Tuvok
left his cell. "Captain, thank you."
Janeway glanced back at Morrow. "Lieutenant
Ayala, please raise the force field." Janeway ordered as she turned to
"Captain." Morrow called out to her
and she turned back to his cell. "Please give Tom, er, Ensign Paris my
"I will, Crewman." She stated as
she gave him a slight smile, turned, and walked out the door with Tuvok
at her side.
The next afternoon BíElanna entered
sickbay and smiled as she saw Tom sitting up on biobed one. She could hear
his soft voice as he argued with the Doctor about getting out of sickbay.
He was not making any progress as she could see the EMH shaking his head.
"Mr. Paris, 72 hours means exactly
that, 72 hours and not a minute less." The Doctor stated.
BíElanna noted that the Doctorís
sharp tone of voice was tempered by the caring look he gave his most frequent
patient. She strode over to the biobed and nodded at the Doctor as he busied
himself at the nearest console. "Hi." She said softly to Tom and gave him
a small smile. "Do you want anything?"
"Yeah, I want to get out of here."
Tom answered quietly. The Doctor glared at him and he knew he would not
be going anywhere soon. He looked back at B'Elanna and then at the Doctor
and asked. "How about a chocolate milkshake?" When the Doctor nodded his
approval, B'Elanna walked over to the replicator. She returned to the biobed
with a large glass with two straws in it.
"Uh, B'Elanna, why 2 straws?" Tom
asked in a confused voice.
With a small smile, BíElanna answered.
"You don't think you could drink this whole thing by yourself in your weakened
state do you?"
Tom returned her smile as she held
the glass up to him and he took a sip through the straw. He winced slightly
when he swallowed but gave her a grin as she leaned forward to take a drink.
"That tastes great, cold and very rich. Thanks." Tom said.
The Doctor walked off to his office
with a small smile on his face, knowing that Tom was getting just the medicine
he needed right now.
Two days later, Captain Janeway sat
at the desk in her ready room reviewing one of the PADDís in the stack
in front of her. She picked up her coffee mug and took a sip, grimacing
slightly when she tasted the cold liquid inside. She stood up and turned
towards the replicator when the chime announced someone at her door. "Come
in." she said.
The door slid open and Tom Paris
walked in, stopped at the desk, and stood at attention. "You wanted to
see me before my shift, Captain?" he asked.
"Yes, Mr. Paris. Please have a seat."
She motioned him towards the couch under her window. "I was just about
to get myself a hot cup of coffee. Would you care for anything?"
"The Doc wants me to lay off the
caffeine for a bit. Some Vulcan Spice tea would be good, thank you, Captain."
Tom answered as he took a seat on the couch.
Janeway ordered the drinks from the
replicator and brought them to the small table by the window. Placing the
mugs down, she addressed the communication system. "Commander Chakotay,
please join me in my ready room." She sat next to Tom and gave him a warm
smile. "How are you feeling, Tom?"
Tom was a little surprised that she
used his first name but gave her a tentative smile in return. "Iím fine,
Captain. The Doc certified me ready to return to duty."
The Captain picked up her mug and
took a long drink of the fresh coffee. She smiled as the hot liquid slid
down her throat. "I donít mean what the Doctor reports, Tom. Youíve been
through a lot in the past few months. How are Ďyouí?" Janeway asked again
as she leaned towards Tom.
Tom took a sip of tea, swallowed,
and set the mug back down on the table. Taking a deep breath he looked
at the Captain. "I guess Iím relieved that itís all over now and I can
get on with my job."
As Tom was speaking, the door from
the bridge slid open and Chakotay entered the room. Tomís face clouded
over, sure that he was in some sort of trouble again. He relaxed back into
the couch when Chakotay flashed him a slight grin.
"Commander, would you care for some
coffee or tea?" Janeway asked.
"Tea would be alright, Captain."
Chakotay answered as he walked to the replicator and ordered a cup. He
then took a seat in the chair across from Tom and the Captain. He had heard
the exchange between Janeway and Tom as he entered from the bridge. Chakotay
took a drink of his tea and sat forward in his chair. "Why didnít you come
to us when the attacks started, Paris?" He asked in his quiet voice.
Tomís face reddened slightly and
he looked away from Chakotay. "I thought that the first time was an isolated
incident. It was dark and I didnít know who was there. When it happened
again, I guess I didnít realize it was the same crewmembers."
"But you took medical supplies from
sickbay and were treating the injuries in your cabin. Morrow admitted that
your quarters had been trashed. How long were you going to let it go on
until you asked for help?" Chakotay persisted.
Tom looked down at the floor and
slowly raised his head to look into the Commanderís eyes. "I...I thought
I could handle it myself. I guess I thought it didnít matter." He paused
and took a couple of shaky breaths and looked away again. "I thought that
I didnít matter." he whispered.
Chakotay shook his head at the younger
manís pronouncement. "Tom, I know we have not always gotten along but no
one on this ship deserves the treatment you received. Yes, youíve made
mistakes in your past, we all have, but you have paid the price for all
Janeway leaned forward and put her
hand on Tomís arm. "Tom, you arenít the same man who came on board at DS9,
youíve grown. You are a very valuable member of this crew. I realize that
the incident with the Moneans was hard on you, that I was hard on you.
Tom, now you need to feel that you can trust us. You need to let other
people get close to you."
"I..Iíll try, Captain." Tom answered
with a hesitant smile as he looked up at her. He picked up the mug and
finished off his tea.
Captain Janeway took another sip
of her coffee and put the mug down on the table. Smiling at her two officers,
she stood up from the couch. "Well, letís get this ship back on track for
home." The two men joined her and the headed for the bridge.
Harry gave Tom a big grin as he passed
the OPís station. "Meet you later for lunch?"
"Sure thing, Harry." Tom returned
the grin as he stepped down towards the conn.
Tom relieved the Gamma shift pilot
at the helm as Janeway and Chakotay took their seats.
"Mr. Paris, set a course for the
Alpha Quadrant, Warp 6." Janeway ordered.
"Aye, Captain." Tom replied as his
fingers punched in the coordinates.
Janeway sat back in her seat with
a small sigh. "Engage."