Title: The Bodyguard 4/?
Author: Maxine

See introduction for pairings, disclaimers and author


Seven days, it's been seven days and this shit is
still going on. Tom sighed in exasperation. He looked
around to find himself once again surrounded by
people, people who worked for and with Chakotay. They
were turning his house into a fortress and it was
getting quite annoying. The constant banging, the
sounds of laser drills boring holes into the stone of
his home. As he laid on a lounge chair by the pool,
trying desperately to concentrate on an up and coming
benefit concert, suddenly a loud 'kabang' made him
jump. Miral, who was in the pool, screamed. Tom had
reached the end of his last tattered nerve.

"THAT'S IT," he screamed! Pulling himself out of the
chair, "Chakotay! I'm done!" Storming into the house,
he continued to bellow for his 'bodyguard'.
Finally the object of his immense displeasure

"Get them the hell out of here now, Chakotay," Tom
roared. "I can't even hear myself think with all this

"Tom...." Chakotay stopped himself from telling the
younger man to take his whining elsewhere. "Look,
they're almost done. All the work will be finished
this afternoon." He remained calm, and spoke quietly.

Tom listened to the tone, not the words. He felt a
bit calmer." They're done today, Chakotay. Whether you
say they are or not. I can't concentrate, I need quiet
for that."

"Obviously you do all your thinking when you're not
on stage," Chakotay chuckled, unable to help himself.

"Ha! Ha! Very funny," Tom smirked. "I know my music
doesn't appeal to you but if you want to keep getting
paid, I have to appeal to the masses."

"Not to worry, Tom. I have found a way to get through
each ear splitting moment."

"Oh, and just how do you do that?"

"I bought earplugs," Chakotay smiled, flashing
dimples, then walked away.

"Smart ass!" Tom yelled after him. Unable to hold
back a smile himself, Tom chuckled at the older man's
solution. Tension between the two of them seemed to
have eased over the past week. Tom noticed that
Chakotay seemed to open up a bit. He was willing to
joke a bit, and take some of Tom's teasing. The blond
felt good about the relationship at this point.
Hopefully he could eventually get his former lover to
talk about his loss. 

Tom was troubled by the amount of times, during the
past week, he found the other man in his bungalow,
deep in thought while listening to recordings of
Rose's. Seeing the clear evidence of pain and sadness
on his friend's face, made Tom wish he could wipe all
of away with just one word or action. Remembering when
they were lovers, Tom had always been able to drag
Chakotay back from the edges of regret with an
antidote or two about whatever current, nail-biting
situation they were in at the time. Even though that
changed dramatically, when he turned tail and ran at
the first twinge of seriousness between the two of
them, Tom knew that once Chakotay forgave him, he
could still do it. Obviously, he's finally forgiven

Was it time to admit to the bronze man how scared he
had been all those years ago? Could Tom open *himself*
up like that? Maybe, if he told Chakotay of his
complete sense of loss over what he ruined, Chakotay
espress his feelings over the loss of Rose. Tom
wouldn't kid himself into believing that there was any
comparison between the two losses, but still. If he
could be honest enough with his former lover, maybe,
just maybe the older man would be honest with him. 

Snorting to himself, {Get real, Paris. Chakotay would
never open up to you, not even on his deathbed.}
Shrugging off the depressing thought, he turned and
went out to find Miral. They had a 'date' this
afternoon with a couple of dolls and a tea set. Once
he was outside, the noise hit him again. Shivering,
Tom looked around, but Miral was no where to be found.

"Miral," he called out, as he walked towards her
playhouse. No answer. "Miral, daddy's ready for the
party." When he got to the front door, he knocked.
This was her private place, he showed her respect for
that by never just walking in. "Honey?" When there was
no answer, Tom decided it was time to ignore that
respect, if she was going to play games with him all
bets were off. 

Opening the door of the playhouse revealed it empty.
Shocked for a moment, he turned and left. He started
to think about where else she could be, as he headed
for the house. He walked in through the kitchen, many
a times he would find her sitting there watching and
talking to Neelix. The Talaxian was there, but alone.
"Neelix, has Miral been through here in the past few

"Looking up from his task, "No, Tom. I haven't seen
her since she went out to join you by the pool an hour
ago. She hiding again?" Neelix smiled. 

"I guess so, if she comes through here, tell her that
I'll be in the play house waiting," he requested as he
continued his walk through the kitchen. Up the stairs
to her room, maybe she decided to bring 'Pooh" with
her this time. Knocking on her bedroom door. "Miral,
tea time," he announced as he opened the door. When he
found she wasn't there either, a sense of panic
started to take hold. {Where in hell is she?} He
wondered as he went back down the stairs quickly.
"Miral," he yelled! "It's time to stop the game, where
are you?"
He could hear the panic in his voice, although he
wasn't sure why he felt it. She was in the house

Chakotay suddenly appeared around a corner, startling
the blond. "Jesus, Chakotay don't do that," he barked.
"Have you seen Miral?"

"No. Not in the past hour or so," he stated. "Wasn't
she by the pool with you?"

"She was, but we're suppose to have our weekly tea
party. I thought she went to the playhouse to get
ready. She's not there, or in her room." Tom's voice
betrayed him, he was suddenly very worried.

Chakotay picked up the panic in the younger man's
voice. "We'll find her, she's probably just hiding
out. I noticed she likes playing hide and seek," he
smiled. "I think she got that concept from her mother.
B'Elanna always loved a good search and conquer

Tom couldn't help but laugh, Chakotay was right.
B'Elanna thrived on the thrill of digging through a
computer to find a problem and coming out triumphant.
The two men began a search and conquer game of their
own. Tom resolved to give his wayward daughter a
lesson she wouldn't soon forget for scaring the crap
out of him. 

Within fifteen minutes the entire staff was involved,
Tom's sense of panic had returned tenfold. "Miral!
This isn't funny, anymore. The game is over! Come out
now or else." Tom's voice was shaky, his body near

As he paced through the kitchen, the sound of the
comm system buzzing startled him. Punching the receive
button, an audio transmission came through.

 "Hello." A distorted voice shrilled. "Tell Mr.
Superstar, I have his precious Miral."  Tom shuddered.

 "You bastard," he bellowed into the phone!

"Oh, it's you, Mr. Superstar. Surprised you answered
the phone yourself. Well, you can meet me in an hour
and we'll talk about you getting your brat back."

"You son of a bitch. Hurt her and you're a dead man!"

Chakotay appeared in front of Tom suddenly. He
motioned for Tom to keep talking.

"Now, now, Mr. Superstar, I think it would be unwise
for you to threaten me at this point in our
relationship. Unless of course you don't care about
your daughter. " The menacing voice seemed to sneer at
him. "Besides, it isn't her I truly want. But she is
an means to the end."

"Let me talk to her. I want to know she's all right,"
Tom pleaded.

"Daddy, come and get me please." Miral's voice begged
through the comm. 

"I'm coming honey. Just sit tight."

"Very touching, Mr. Superstar. Want to see her again?
Go to the armory. Be there in an hour. Oh, and tell
your bodyguard you come alone or Miral's dead."  The
comm link was cut.

Tom let out a wail. "Damn, son of a bitch! I'll break
every bone in his body." He then turned to Chakotay.
"How the fuck did he get passed you wonderful security
system, huh? You've been preaching to me that you're
the best. Well guess what. YOU SUCK," he raged.

"Tom... stop," Chakotay said in a quiet tone. 

"Stop! Stop! My fucking kid is in the hands of some
lunatic and you want me to stop?"

"TOM! Enough! We've got to go and get Miral back. You
have to calm down," Chakotay ordered. 

"You're not going anyway. I am," he roared as he
pushed passed the older man. 

Reaching out to stop him, Chakotay grabbed his arm.
"No! This is *my* job. This is what you've been paying
*me* for."

"Didn't you hear him Chakotay? He said *I* go alone
or she's dead. That's exactly what I intend to do."

"That's exactly how you'll get yourself killed, you
idiot! Think first! Then act." Chakotay had lost all
sense of patience. "You want to make Miral an orphan?
Is that your goal? Because that's exactly what you'll
be doing if you walk in there blind and without me."

Tom was trembling, but he heard what Chakotay said.
"No. I don't want that."

"All right then," Chakotay said. He turned to Nick
and nodded. The other security man took off in a run. 

"Where is he going?" Tom whispered. 

"He's going to do his job," Chakotay answered calmly.
He then hit the intercom. "Bob, did you get it?"

"The transmission was sent through masked signals but
I have the general location. Three more minutes and
it'll be exact"

"Good. When you have it. Send it through to Paul on
the hover-car's comm, we're on our way." Chakotay
turned back to Tom. "Let's go."

"Where are we going?"

"To catch a mouse without any cheese," Chakotay
stated cryptically. 

Tom couldn't do anything but follow as the
professional left the house. By the time they reached
the car, Paul had the information. Chakotay looked it
over and frown. "This can't be right."

"What?" Tom asked.

"The transmission came from The Delaney sisters'
house," he said as he got in the car.

"No way," Tom said stunned, joining the older man in
the back.

"According to this readout, it came from 8473 Queens

"That's their address, but why in hell would either
of them kidnap Miral?"

"I don't know. Unless, they're in trouble also."
Chakotay thought for a minute, then he turned back to
the comm unit and punched in a few things. 

"What are you doing?"

"I'm double checking to make sure Bob got it right.
*And* checking to see if the ladies are even at home."

"Oh," Tom whispered. His mind was running through a
series of conversations, trying to remember if either
Megan or Jenny mentioned that they would be gone over
the weekend. He couldn't remember, the only thought
that kept coming forward was Miral was alone with some
manic and she was scared to death. 

Chakotay broke his train of thought, "The
transmission did originate from their home, but they
aren't there. Or at least sensors indicate they
Chakotay spoke in a measured, cold voice. "Unless this
bastard has found a way override my commands."

"How could he do that? I mean not even Tuvok could do
that when we were on Voyager," Tom asked in

"It's not possible. Not even my own people *now* know
my codes," Chakotay answered. 

Tom watched as the dark haired man processed any
possibilities. He knew that Chakotay's mind worked
much different from anyone else, when it came to his
command codes. When they were in the Delta Quadrant,
no one but no one ever knew all the different
overrides the former Maquis captain had hidden in the
computer. Tom remembered one time; Chakotay told him
that when he first accepted the First Officer's
position, he spent an entire night hiding all sorts of
commands. He said it was just in case he found that
the captain wasn't as truthful as she seemed when
talking about integrating the two crews. 'A
contingency plan' he had called it.

While Tom reflected on his past relationship with the
big Maquis protector, Chakotay was signaling all
parties in each position. Nick was already at the
armory, with three others, at a safe distance. They
could see everything that moved in and around the
place but they would go undetected. Ken Dalby and
Gerron Tem were at the Delaney's place awaiting

In his mind, Tom came back to the problem at hand.
Something was bothering him about the location. He
knew someone else lived not too far from Jenny and
Megan. Someone, who worked for him, it just wouldn't
come to him. Damn it, he knew he should have spent the
week going over Ray's files. 

"That's it! It's Ray not the Delaney sisters," Tom

"What? How do you know?" Chakotay asked, anger raised
quickly at hearing the little weasel's name.

"He lives on the same street. Four houses up from
them on the other side of the street." The information
rushed back too quickly. "I remember when Jenny
brought me to their house the first time, she
commented that Ray was the one who suggested the area.
Then she pointed to his house. It's a one-story
structure, flagstone and yellow pine. Oh and there is
a small bird bath in the front, it has a carving of a
music cleft as a base."

Chakotay punched the information into the computer as
Tom spoke, his anger growing with each passing second.
Twice now, Tom had stopped him from breaking the
fucker's neck, *this* time Chakotay would do it. "I'm
going to rip that bastard's arm off and shove it down
his throat, *then* I'm going to break his neck," he
grumbled, he thought to himself but when he heard Tom
mumble an agreement, he realized he was wrong.

"Can I break every finger *before* you rip the arm
off? How about letting me make the path easier for the
arm, I'll knock every fucking tooth out of his mouth
first. I can't believe he'd do this." Suddenly another
thought came to him. "Chakotay, I'm sorry I flipped on
your back at the house. This wasn't your fault. Miral
knows Ray, but she doesn't know that he's not working
for me anymore. Of course she would let him in the
yard if she saw him outside the gate. And she would go
with him, if he told her I said it was all right," Tom
sighed as he ran his hand through his hair. "Even
though she doesn't particularly like him, I've taught
her that she should respect her elders and always
listen to those she knows."

"I did and do understand Tom. It's my job to make
sure shit like this doesn't happen. I slacked off.
Again, I have to say that it could be a very large
mistake having me in this position."

"No. This wasn't your fault, Chakotay. I should have
told Miral that Ray wasn't one of the adults she had
to listen to anymore."

"I should've been walking the perimeter," Chakotay
said in a self-incrementing tone.

"Chakotay, don't beat yourself up over this. I know
you are doing everything you can. Miral probably
walked out of the yard on her own. She knows she isn't
supposed to do that, but if she saw Ray she may have.
And he counted on it." Tom stopped speaking when the
hover-car pulled to a halt. He looked out the front
window, to watch, as Ray's own hover-car pulled out of
the driveway. He could see the top of Miral's head
peaking out the back window. He let out a gasp.
"There! She's in the back," he cried out.

"Now," Chakotay yelled, as he jumped out of the car.
Tom watched in sick fascination as Ken, Gerron,
Chakotay and John Tripper descended on the hover-car
still in his former manager's drive. Paul pulled up to
stop the car from going any further.

Tom pulled himself together and leapt out of the
backseat. He stormed over to the waiting car, ripped
open the door and pulled the offending bastard out by
his forearm.  "You fucking son of a bitch," Tom
bellowed as he slammed Ray against the frame of the
car. Then with every ounce of hatred and disgust he
could muster, Tom punched Ray in the face. As he did,
he let go of the smaller man, allowing the full impact
of the blow to throw him against the car. All five men
watched as Ray slid to the ground. 

Tom shook out his hand, looked at Chakotay and said,
"Sorry to steal your thunder." His tone flat, almost
dead. His eyes caught movement in the back of the car.
"Miral," he cried! He opened the door and dragged his
daughter to him. Enveloping her in his arms, "You
okay, honey?"

"Yeah, daddy. I'm fine," she answered quietly. Her
voice betrayed her as it cracked. "I was so scared,
daddy. He was so mean to me."

"Did he hit you? Hurt you in any way," Tom asked?

She shook her head 'no' then hugged her father again.
Both Paris' watched as Ken hauled Ray off the ground
and tossed him in the back of Gerron's hover-car. 

"He's going to have a chat with the local law
enforcement agency," Ken snapped. 

"I want to know what else he's involved with. If it's
him who has been sending the letters and torched Tom's
house," Chakotay demanded. He hadn't moved from his
spot on the opposite side of the car. He knew himself,
if he got much closer to Ray, there wouldn't be any
investigation. The little shit would be dead. A sense
of déjà vu came over him; he felt this before, when
they found Neil Forman. He was *now* positive that he
had to get out, get away. His feelings for Tom came
back with avengence; he felt himself stagger at the

Chakotay looked at the blond and his daughter, his
heart constricted. {No! Not again,} he screamed to
himself. {I will *not* lose another one.} He had to
leave, Chakotay turned away and began walked down the
road, passed the hover-cars parked there. Walking off
into the afternoon, away from the one person who could
cause him to lose his self-control, lose himself. He
would contact Greg as soon as he was able to speak

He heard Tom call after him but ignored the voice. He
blocked out all the cries for him to come back. There
was no going back, not anymore. He couldn't stay and
watch Tom die, watch Miral lose her only parent. He
couldn't stay and be sucked back into the place that
caused far too much pain. He would rather die himself
then go through that again. Later he would hand over
every piece of information he had gathered this week
to Greg. Then he'd be gone.

As Chakotay walked away from the others, he failed to
notice the dead eyes that followed him at a distance.
Eyes focused on his every step, eyes that hid the rage
and hatred for the former Maquis Captain. Eyes
belonging to the person who was bent on taking
everything from him.