Gods And Goddesses
By Deborah Cook
See prologue for this crap. My fingers are numb!
"Gods and Goddesses" Chapter two
Harry grunted, shoving the lever as hard as he could. The doors parted another half inch, and Harry thought again that the ventilation system in crew quarters should really be made so that you could travel through it if necessary.
"'Nother couple of inches, Harry," Tom said breathlessly, bracing his feet against the communications console and pulling for all he was worth. The door screeched, pulling apart a good six inches and throwing Tom and Harry off balance. They fell to the floor in a tangle of arms and legs. Harry untangled himself and scrambled into the corridor.
"B'Elanna's going to kill us when she has to fix that door," Tom remarked.
"Just make sure you pick up our toys before she does, babe," Harry replied nonchalantly.
Tom snickered. He loved it when Harry called him babe, but he only did it when they were talking about sex.
"The emergency bulkheads are up," Harry said from further down the corridor. "We'll have to take the jeffries tubes."
"They'll be sealed, too," Tom pointed out.
"Bring the crowbar," Harry suggested. Tom sighed.
"Hey, Harry," he added mischievously.
"If i don't pick up my toys, What are you going to do about it?" he asked innocently.
"You know that new program you have?" Harry asked, pounding at the hatch until it warped enough that he could shove his crowbar in and lever it away from the wall.
"The horse racing one?"
"Yeah, that one. You know those riding crops the jockey's use?"
This was getting interesting. "Yes?"
"I thought i might modify the program a bit. How'd you like me to ride you, Tom?"
"Oh, yeah, baby," Tom crooned.
"With the riding crop. And maybe spurs," Harry added thoughtfully.
"Anything for you," Tom said fervently.
"Anything?" Harry levered another hatch away from the surrounding wall.
"Wanna tell me why we have a crowbar in our toybox?"
"Uh... I had plans for it..."
"I can't think of anything we could do with a crow bar, Tom." Harry crawled back toward him, leaning in very close, nose to nose. "Come on, baby, spill it," he suggested huskily.
"Not we... exactly..." Tom said warily... "More like you."
Harry just raised one eyebrow, sitting back on his heels.
"I... was... going to... lock you in the closet and seewhatyoudidtome... when you got out."
"Lock me in the closet."
"Were you going to help me at ALL?"
"I'll have to think up something better than spurs," Harry muttered, turning around and starting off again.
"Harry?" Tom asked after a while. Harry pounded away at another hatch until it warped, then stopped for a moment to rest.
"What are you thinking about?"
"What are you going to do?"
"Haven't decided yet. It's going t involve a crowbar, though."
"Harry, i can't tink of anything we could do with a crowbar, either," Tom said nervously.
"Your imagination seemed pretty fertile a few minutes ago! Besides, who said i was going to be involved. I think i'll just watch...to make sure you're doing it right."
"Doing what right?"
"I told you, i haven't decided yet. Oops, this hatch is already open!"
"I guess that means we don't need the crowbar anymore," Tom said hopefully.
"I'll just keep it for a while, anyway. Just in case," Harry said mildly.
The two emerged on the bridge a few minutes later. "Looks like we're late for the party, Harry," Tom said, tumbling out of the jeffries tube.
"Captain, can i have a word with you?" Harry asked, ignoring Tom, who seated himself at his post.
"I'm a little busy right now, Ensign," she began, but Harry interrupted.
"It's important, Captain. It concerns our current situation."
"Very well. My ready room is out of order just at the moment, we can talk over here," she replied, motioning him to the far corner of the bridge.
Harry propped the crowbar against the conn, where Tom would have to look at it the entire time they were up here. Tom sighed again quietly, but didn't touch it.
Harry quickly outlined the problem, explaining very carefully how he had learned of it when asked
"It came to you in a dream?" The Captain asked. She didn't disbelieve him; it wasn't as though it had never happened before, but the whole "My Goddess sent me a prophetic dream" sequence seemed a bit far fetched.
"Um, no, but that's close enough. Anyway, Aphrael can't help us from where she is. We're outside her sphere of influence. There's a whole different set of Gods out here than back home. We need to bring her here, but i can't do that alone. She needs more of a connection, which means we have to call her as a group."
"Ensign, are you sure about this?" Janeway asked.
"Yes, Ma'am. I've worshipped Aphrael since i was nine years old, before
i even knew her name. I'm sure. Trust me."
Janeway stared at him for a long moment.They couldn't get any of their equipment to work and most of her crew was still trapped in their quarters; unable to help. They couldn't repair anything, nothing really seemed to be broken. It had just stopped working. Was there really any other choice?
"All right. What do we do?" She asked finally.
"We Call her, Captain," Harry replied. "I need everybody to sit in a circle, he called out.
Harry explained the situation again, very briefly as they arranged themselves in a rough circle. "Join hands. I'll Call her, and you should be able to feel it. Just follow where i lead, all right? If you're having trouble, sound out. Talking won't affect this in the least.
There was a general assent. and Harry settled himself, centering his consciousness and reaching for Aphrael, the way he'd done so may times in the past. The others were drawn into the Calling; one by one they added their tiny voices to his. The thread grew stronger, weaving itself into a thin rope, and Harry felt a weight at the other end. He pulled, slowly, reeling it in, careful not to dislodge his passenger. It wouldn't do to misplace his Goddess now.
Harry felt the rope slacken, and cased pulling. He dispersed the link as gently as he could, regaining his awareness of the outside world slowly.
He opened his eyes to see Aphrael and Chekov standing in the center of the circle, all eyes riveted to them in astonishment. "Hello," she said, smiling. Chekov rolled his eyes.
"Captain Janeway" He greeted her. "Pavel Chekov," He added, shaking her hand.
"Admiral..?" she questioned wonderingly.
"Retired," he replied dryly. "For quite some time, now.
The ship shuddered violently, and there was a deep clang, as though something had hi the hull.
"What was that?" Janeway demanded.
"Chekov paused, concentrating. "The Malin are towing you back to their home planet, he explained finally. The ship jerked again, knocking them all off their feet. "Idiots," he muttered. "Can't even tow a ship properly."
"Aphrael?" Harry said, looking at her.
"I'll have a talk with the Man Upstairs," She replied, vanishing. Voyager shuddered again, and there was a horrible screech from somewhere.
Chekov muttered something under his breath. "They don't have tractor beams, and you''re too big for one ship to tow, so they have five lines tied to you. They can coordinate themselves enough to avoid tearing the ship apart. I'll try to dislodge them," he added. His forehead wrinkled up, and the viewscreen suddenly activated. The crew could see three of the five ships ahead of them. On of the towing lines snapped suddenly, and the little ship went spiralling off to slam into one of its counterparts, both of them exploding spectacularly.
Aphrael suddenly reappeared with a behemoth of a man holding her hand. "See/" she pouted. "They're my friends and your mean Malin's are hurting their ship. They didn't do anything but fly past the planet, you're high priest is lying to you." She looked up at Malin hopefully, lower lip stuck out just a little. She was pulling out al the stops for this one.
Malin frowned. He waved one hand at the viewer, and the remaining visible ship exploded in a shower of sparks and debris. "There. They've been punished."
"Thank you!" Aphrael said happily floating up to hug the enormous God happily. She kissed him on the cheek, "I just knew you were a nice man!"
Malin smiled, pleased, and then yawned. He patted Aphrael on the head, and then vanished. She rolled her eyes when he was gone, sighing. "You just can't help some people." She waved her hand around and all systems were restored to their proper function. Her face lit up suddenly. "Captain, do you mind if i stay and visit Harry?"
"Stay as long as you like," Janeway replied. "In fact, i'd prefer it if you stayed until we're outside Malin territory."
"Oh, that's just wonderful," the little Goddess said happily. I was hoping to get to know Chakotay better," She added, climbing into the big indian's lap. He smiled tentatively at her, looking more confused than anything.
Chekov snorted. "Aphrael, if we're going to be here for so long..." he added wistfully.
"Of course, dear," she said, smiling at him mischievously. Sulu appeared in the center of the bridge, naked and wet.
He sighed. "Pavel, why can't you ask her for me when you're alone?" he asked wearily.
"I don't think it would help," Harry offered from his position at Ops.
"Probably not," Sulu agreed. "Some clothes, please, little one?" he asked mildly. Aphrael giggled and dropped some at his feet. He gave her a stern look. "You need a spanking," he said firmly, and started dressing himself.
Harry was suddenly reminded of his plans for Tom. "Captain, may i be excused? Tom and i have a lot to talk about and..."
"Of course, Ensign. Half the crew has been off duty for the last twelve hours, they can take over. I'm going to bed."
"Thank you, Ma'am," Harry replied, sauntering over and picking up the crowbar. "Come on, Tom. I have a lot of explaining to do," he added, grinning.