Codes: T/7, Ayala/Dalby, C/M Delaney, Vorik/M Delaney, C/m
implied, J/C?, C/P?
Archive: Cha_Club, TPD, Paris Nights, CPSG, CP_Eternal. Anywhere
Disclaimer: The author owns nothing here except the ideas behind the
story. Chakotay would be happier if she *did* own him, but that's a
story for another time...
Summary: After Chakotay has broken up with his lover, two persons
on Voyager decide to tell him how they feel. Will he choose one of
them, and if he does, which one?
Dedicated to Mae for all her help
Tom stared at his companion, unable to believe the words that had just
come out of her mouth. "Run that by me again," he finally requested,
after a moment of stunned silence.
B'Elanna growled. "I *said*, 'Face it, Tom, you're in love with
Chakotay,'" she repeated. She hesitated briefly, then added, "You have
been since the Maquis."
For an instant, Tom considered denying it, then thought better of it.
B'Elanna knew him far too well, and wouldn't believe him. "I didn't
know I was that obvious," he said instead.
B'Elanna softened when she noticed his distress. "You weren't. I just
know you well enough to recognize the signs. Don't worry," she
added. "I doubt anyone else has noticed."
"You don't think Harry knows?" Tom asked worriedly.
She frowned at his tone of voice. "No. Why?"
Tom grimaced. "Harry is homophobic."
B'Elanna's frown deepened. "How do you know?"
"You remember when Greg and Ken went public with their
relationship?" Tom asked. When B'Elanna nodded in confirmation, he
continued. "Well, Harry reacted pretty strongly to it, so I asked him
about it. I thought maybe he was interested in one of them."
B'Elanna waited for a moment, but when Tom didn't say anything
else, she prompted him. "And? What did he say?"
Tom hesitated, knowing what her reaction to what Harry had said
would most likely be. Then he sighed and told her. "He said that same-
sex relationships are unnatural and disgusting."
B'Elanna growled in fury. "Harry needs to grow up," she snarled.
"Yeah, but you know that's probably not going to happen."
"I know," B'Elanna agreed. "But, if he says *one* word about Seven,
I'll rip out his intestines and strangle him with them!"
Despite knowing that she was completely serious, Tom smiled. He
found B'Elanna's protectiveness of Seven very sweet. Not that he
would ever tell her that. He preferred to stay in one piece, thank you
That was also one of the reasons that he had kept the knowledge of
B'Elanna and Seven's relationship to himself. Although, it still
amazed him that the two women had managed to keep it a secret for so
long. They had been together for eight months now, and there had
never even been a *hint* of gossip about them.
Tom was brought out of his thoughts when B'Elanna spoke again. Her
voice was calm once more, having obviously brought her anger under
control while he was thinking. "So, are you going to tell him?"
Tom blinked in confusion, then realized what she was talking about.
"No, B'El, I'm not going to tell Chakotay that I'm in love with him."
When she opened her mouth, he held up a hand to prevent her from
speaking. "At least, not yet."
Tom lifted an eyebrow. "C'mon, B'El. You know I would never
destroy a relationship."
B'Elanna's frown returned. "What relationship?"
It was Tom's turn to frown. "Don't tell me you don't know that he's
involved with Megan Delaney."
B'Elanna's face cleared. "Oh, *that*. Tom, they broke up awhile back.
I know it's not common knowledge yet, but Megan's bonded to
Vorik." Seeing the shocked expression on Tom's face, she asked,
"Didn't Harry tell you?"
"No," Tom muttered. Then her words hit. "You mean that Harry
"Sure he does. He's the one who told me."
Tom's eyes narrowed slightly. "I have to talk to Harry about keeping
me up-to-date on the important things around here."
"You can do that later," B'Elanna said firmly. "Right now, you need to
go talk to Chakotay."
"But. I can't just go tell him," Tom protested.
"Of course you can," B'Elanna said, then raised her voice slightly.
"Computer, what is the location of Commander Chakotay?"
"Commander Chakotay is in his quarters."
"There you go, Tom," B'Elanna said, as she started pushing him
towards the door. "Go talk to him."
Tom allowed B'Elanna to push him to the door, then halted as a
thought occurred to him. "Computer, is Commander Chakotay alone?"
The computer's reply to Tom's inquiry stopped B'Elanna's attempts to
get Tom moving again. For a moment she was too shocked to speak,
then she recovered her senses and asked, "Who is in Commander
"Commander Chakotay and Captain Janeway."
B'Elanna's eyes narrowed. Over the past few months, she'd noticed
the glances Janeway threw Chakotay. She had obviously developed a
sudden interest in him, but hadn't done anything about it, probably due
to his relationship with Megan. Now that Chakotay was available
again, Janeway was free to pursue him.
B'Elanna caught Tom's eyes. "You should go talk to him."
"But. the Captain's there," Tom objected.
"So?" B'Elanna shrugged. "If she's there on ship's business, you'll
apologize for the interruption, and offer to come back later, or
"And if she's there for a personal reason?" asked Tom, who had also
noticed Janeway's recent interest in Chakotay.
"If she's there for the reason I fear, then Chakotay will be grateful for
the interruption," B'Elanna replied with conviction. Seeing the
quizzical expression on Tom's face, she elaborated. "He's not
interested in her romantically."
Tom frowned uncertainly. "Are you *sure* about that?"
"Yes. Now, *go*."
Tom searched B'Elanna's face. Seeing that she spoke the truth, he
finally left her quarters. He stopped just outside the door and turned to
look at her. "Goodnight, B'El, and thank you."
B'Elanna smiled softly. "You're welcome, Tom. Good luck with
Chakotay. If you need to talk later, you know where to find me," she
"You'll be in bed, with Seven," Tom said with a smirk. "Give her a
big, juicy kiss from me." Not waiting for a reply, he quickly walked to
the nearest turbolift. Once the lift arrived, he entered and stated his
destination. "Deck three," he ordered, grateful that he was the only
Chakotay rose from his chair, giving Janeway a quizzical look.
"Would you like more coffee?" he asked, as he picked up their empty
cups and walked over to the replicator.
"Yes, please," Janeway answered, pleased with her progress. The fact
that he'd offered her another cup of coffee meant that he enjoyed her
company. She sighed quietly. It had been quite awhile since they spent
any time with each other off-duty, just relaxing in each other's
company. She knew it was mostly her fault, having avoided him after
he got involved with Megan Delaney.
She hadn't been able to help it, though. She had been afraid that she
would be unable to control her jealousy. So, rather than risking saying
something that would destroy their friendship, she had stayed away
from him off-duty. He had noticed, of course, and when he asked her
about it, she simply told him that she knew what is was like in the
beginning of a relationship, and that she didn't want to intrude.
He had known that she wasn't telling him the complete truth, but had
let it go. He knew her well enough that he would never push her. If she
wanted him to know what was on her mind, she'd tell him. Until
today, though, she had kept the truth to herself. Which was why she
was in his quarters. She was going to tell him what she had realized
when she found out about him and Megan.
Her musings were interrupted when Chakotay returned and placed her
cup on the coffee table in front of her. She watched him while he
returned to his chair and sat down, sipping his tea. She regretted the
fact that he had chosen to sit in a chair rather than beside her on the
couch. However, she hoped that that would change once she told him
the reason she was here.
Janeway met Chakotay's eyes. "How are you, really?" she asked,
concerned about him, but also wanting to know that he was over
Chakotay smiled slightly at her obvious concern. "I'm fine, Kathryn.
The break-up was a mutual decision, so you don't have to worry about
She returned his smile, mentally sighing in relief. "Well, I'm glad that
you're okay, but I'll worry about you all I like and there isn't a
damned thing you can do about it," she teased.
Chakotay chuckled softly. "Well, if you *want* to worry about me,
who am *I* to stop you?" he returned jokingly. "After all, you're the
Captain. I'm just the First Officer; who am I to tell you what to do?"
Kathryn laughed. When she got her amusement under control, she
picked up her cup and drank her coffee. Replacing the now-empty cup
on the table, she studied her companion thoughtfully, trying to decide
how to phrase what she wanted to say.
Despite looking at him, Kathryn was too occupied with her thoughts to
notice Chakotay's reaction to the expression in her eyes. He shifted
uncomfortably as a feeling of dread washed over him. He was aware
of her recent interest in him. He wasn't blind, and even if he hadn't
noticed himself, Megan had commented on it on several occasions.
To his relief, Kathryn hadn't said anything about it since he and
Megan parted ways. However, he had a feeling that she was going to
now; that it was, in fact, the reason she was here. She was about to
prove him right.
Having decided what to say, Kathryn opened her mouth. Before she
could say anything, however, the chime sounded, announcing a visitor.
Chakotay rose from his chair and went to answer the door, wondering
who it was, and intensely grateful for the interruption.
Tom was taken aback when Chakotay answered the door in person,
instead of just calling for him to enter. He was even more surprised
when he noticed the quickly hidden relief on the other man's face.
Tom briefly wondered what Janeway had said or done to cause that
reaction, then shrugged it off as Chakotay spoke.
"Tom. What brings you here?"
"I'm sorry to disturb you, Chakotay, but I need to talk to you," Tom
replied, then glanced over Chakotay's shoulder to visibly confirm
Janeway's presence. Seeing her on the couch, he looked back at the
Commander and added, "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt. I'll
come back at another time."
As Tom turned to leave, Chakotay's hand on his arm stopped him. He
turned back and glanced quizzically at the other man.
"You're not interrupting, Tom. The Captain and I were just talking,
but it can wait," Chakotay reassured the younger man. Despite the fact
that he and Tom were friends, the other man had never visited
Chakotay in his quarters. For Tom to be here now, it had to be
Tom looked uncertainly at Chakotay. "Are you sure?"
"Yes," Chakotay answered with a reassuring smile. "Come in, Tom."
Seeing the Commander's smile, Tom relaxed slightly and entered the
older man's quarters. Stopping in the middle of the room, he bit his
lower lip when he saw the expression on Janeway's face. She was
clearly annoyed by his presence. Tom was tempted to apologize and
leave, but the memory of what B'Elanna had told him, coupled with
Chakotay's relief, stopped the words on his lips.
Chakotay noticed the irritated expression on Janeway's face, but chose
to ignore it as he addressed the pilot. "Have a seat, Tom," he said,
gesturing to a chair. When the younger man sat down, Chakotay
turned to the Captain. "Do you mind if we finish our conversation
later, Kathryn?" he asked. "Tom needs to talk to me."
"All right. Ill just leave the two of you, then," Kathryn said as she rose
from the couch. Despite her annoyance at the interruption, she didn't
protest. Like Chakotay, she knew that it had to be important if Tom
came to the First Officer's quarters.
Chakotay followed Janeway to the door. When she stepped out into the
corridor, he said, "Thank you, Kathryn. I'll catch up with you later, so
we can finish our conversation."
Janeway smiled. "That's alright, Chakotay. I know it must be
important since Tom came to visit your quarters," she said. "I'll just go
finish some reports and have an early night."
"I'll see you tomorrow, then," Chakotay said as he returned her smile.
"Good night, Kathryn. Pleasant dreams."
"Good night, Chakotay." With that, Janeway turned and walked down
the hall to her own quarters, knowing that her dreams would be
As soon as Janeway turned towards her own quarters, Chakotay
stepped away from the door, allowing it to close, and turned towards
Tom. "Can I get you anything?"
Tom looked up. "I'd like a cup of tea if you don't mind," he replied
quietly. Now that they were alone, his nervousness had returned with a
Chakotay, having noticed Tom's anxiety, ordered a cup of herbal tea,
hoping that it would settle the younger man's nerves. He couldn't
remember ever seeing Tom this uneasy, and wondered at the cause. As
he picked up the cup and carried it over to the other man, he shrugged
off his speculations, knowing that Tom would tell him when he was
Tom took the cup Chakotay handed him, then sipped tentatively at the
aromatic beverage. "This is good," he remarked, putting aside his
nervousness for a moment. "What is it?"
Chakotay smiled slightly, noting that some of Tom's anxiety had
disappeared. "It's an old family recipe, designed to soothe and relax."
He finished his own tea, then added, "I drink it myself when I'm
nervous or upset."
Tom nodded, but didn't comment on the fact that Chakotay had seen
his apprehension. He had expected as much, aware that it must've
been fairly obvious. Instead he brought up something he'd thought
about since B'Elanna told him about it. "I heard what happened with
you and Megan, Chakotay. I'm really sorry. It must've been quite a
shock for you to find out about her and Vorik."
"Thank you, Tom," Chakotay said, seeing the sincerity in Tom's eyes.
Then he smiled and told the younger man a secret that only he, Megan
and Vorik knew. "No, I wasn't shocked about Megan and Vorik. I
already knew," he confessed.
Tom blinked in surprise. "You did?"
"Yes. Megan and I were together for almost a year, so I know her
pretty well," Chakotay said. "I knew that she was in love with Vorik
before she did. I also noticed that her interest was reciprocated, which
is actually one of the main reasons that we broke up. I knew that Vorik
would approach Megan if she were single."
"Oh." That was the only reaction Tom was capable of for the moment.
Thinking about it, though, he realized that this was something
Chakotay would do. Then something occurred to him, and he looked at
his friend. "How did you know that Vorik was interested in Megan"
"I recognized the signs."
"The signs? But, he's Vulcan."
"Yes, but the signs are obvious if you know what to look for."
"And you know what to look for," Tom stated, more than asked. When
Chakotay nodded in confirmation, he asked, "How?"
Chakotay hesitated for a moment, then answered, "I had a Vulcan
lover when I was at Starfleet Academy."
"Anyone I know?"
Chakotay considered it for a moment, then shrugged. "You might."
Tom waited a moment, but when Chakotay didn't say anything else,
he asked, "You're not going to tell me who it was, are you?"
"Not at present, no," Chakotay answered seriously.
Tom nodded his acceptance, then fell silent, not quite sure what to say
next. The fact that Chakotay had had a Vulcan lover had surprised
him. He knew enough about Vulcans to know that they seldom took a
lover other than their bond-mate, and on the few occasions it happened
it was hardly ever a non-Vulcan.
After a few moments, Tom shook off his thoughts and returned his
attention to the other man. "I know it's not really any of my business,"
he started hesitantly.
"But you're going to ask anyway," Chakotay concluded with a smile.
"Yeah, well, I'm curious," Tom replied. When Chakotay nodded for
him to go on, he continued. "You said that Megan's interest in Vorik
was one of the reasons the two of you broke up."
"And you're wondering about the other reason."
Chakotay sighed softly, then answered Tom's unvoiced question.
"Megan wasn't the only one who fell in love with someone else."
"I see," Tom said, concealing the fact that Chakotay's words broke his
heart. "Do you wanna tell me who it is?" he asked before he could
control himself. Then, not really wanting to know whom the lucky
person was, he quickly added, "Never mind. It's none of my business,
and I shouldn't have asked."
Chakotay noticed Tom's emotional withdrawal, and wondered at the
cause. "It's all right, Tom. I don't mind you asking." He hesitated for a
moment, wondering how Tom would react, then decided to answer the
"What about me?" Tom asked, not sure that Chakotay meant what he
Chakotay caught and held Tom's eyes. "You're the one I fell in love
"Me?" Tom whispered, stunned. "You're in love with me?"
"Yes," Chakotay answered quietly. It was his turn to be nervous while
he waited for Tom's reaction. It wasn't long in coming.
Tom shook off his shock and searched Chakotay's eyes. Seeing the
love in the dark orbs, he relaxed and his face began to glow. He rose
from his chair and walked the short distance to where the other man
was sitting. Then he knelt down and, taking Chakotay's hands in his,
looked up at him. "You know, this is the reason I came here," he said
gently. "To tell you that I love you, and have for a long time."
"Yes." Tom hesitated for a brief moment, then continued. "I've never
told you before because at first, we didn't get along. And then there
was the fact that I didn't want to acknowledge that I was in love with
someone who didn't even like me."
"But we worked out our differences and became friends," Chakotay
remarked. "Why didn't you tell me then?"
"Because I was afraid of rejection, and I didn't want to risk ruining our
friendship," Tom replied. "When I finally got up the courage to tell
you, you were involved with Megan and I figured that I'd lost my
chance. I didn't want to interfere in your relationship."
"Why didn't you come to me after Megan and I broke up?"
"Because I didn't know about it until today," Tom said. At Chakotay's
quizzical look, he elaborated. "B'Elanna told me about your break-up.
She's also the one who told me about Megan's bonding to Vorik."
"She convinced you to come here, didn't she?" Chakotay asked,
"Yeah, she did," Tom admitted. "And although she didn't say so, I
think she'd have told you if I didn't." With this remark Tom proved
that Chakotay wasn't the only one who knew B'Elanna well.
Chakotay laughed softly, knowing that Tom was probably right. Then
he untangled his hands from Tom's and opened his arms. "Come
Tom rose from his kneeling position, took a step forward and sat down
in Chakotay's lap. As he felt his beloved's arms wrapping around him,
he bent his head, leaned in and captured Chakotay's full lips in a