Title: Things Change 4/?
Author: Maxine
Pairing C/P eventually and only C/P
Rating: This chapter R for language and a release of frustration
Disclaimer: Paramount and whoever else owns the characters I just 
wanted to have some fun.
Feedback: Sure I can take it plainedge77@yahoo.com

Side note: I want to thank Ayesha, Isabelle and Shao for helping me 
work through the dilemma I had with this story. What Chakotay goes 
through comes from real life experience and to express this in 
writing has helped me, but things went off a bit for a while and 
these three ladies were wonderful in making me see that it's my story 
and I should tell it. Okay enough of the sap time for the good stuff!

Things Change 4

"Tom what would you like to discuss?"

"Captain if it is alright with you and the doctor I would 
like to take on the responsibility of being Chakotay's major 

"You would? Why?"

"I feel that he might respond to me better then anyone else. 
Mostly because of what we experienced earlier today, the other reason 
is I want to. I suppose you could say this is my chance to make up 
for a few things I didn't do once before."

"Tom you don't still feel responsible for your mother not 
coming through her illness."

"I do in a way captain. If I had stayed home instead of going 
back to the Academy and then spending my summer in France perhaps she 
would have lived longer or even still be alive today."

"Tom you have no way of knowing if that is true or not. From 
what your father told me the doctor's weren't very hopeful to begin 

"Perhaps you are right but I can't change the way I feel. And 
if helping Chakotay recover helps me come to terms with that, well I 
need to try."

"Alright Tom we will discuss it with Chakotay and if he 
agrees I will give you off for the first few weeks he is back in his 
quarters and then we will take it from there. But you will not do it 
alone B'Elanna, Tuvok and I will help you."

"Thank you captain I appreciate you giving me this chance."

"You are welcome, now how about we go see if the doctor will 
wake Chakotay and we will discuss further."

They walked out of the office and back to Chakotay, B'Elanna was now 
sitting in the chair that Tom had vacated earlier and the doctor was 
checking readings.

"Doctor do you think you could wake the commander up? We have 
a few things we need to discuss with him."

"No need I am awake already." Chakotay answered for the doctor

"Chakotay how are you feeling?" B'Elanna up and hugged him.

"Like I went ten rounds with Mohammed Ali and lost." The 
reference to the 20th century boxer was lost on everyone but Tom who 
laughed. Chakotay smiled it him.

"If that means you feel like you got beat up pretty bad you 
did. We had to crack open your ribs to get to your heart and the 
artery that was blocked. We moved a number of muscled and tendons 

"Thank you doctor for the gory details." Kathryn stopped him 
from going any further, she could barely think of them operating let 
alone knowing exactly that entailed.

"Chakotay as you may have guessed you will have a long road 
to recovery. The doctor has made out a schedule of things that you 
will be able to do and when. In order to get out of here anytime soon 
you will need someone to be with you at all times."

"I figured that much. So who has the honors of putting up 
with the bear with the thorn in his claw?" 

"I would like to Chakotay. That is if you don't mind." Tom 
stepped forward. 

To say that the doctor and B'Elanna were shocked would have been an 
understatement. But when they heard Chakotay's response you could 
have knocked the both of them over with a feather.

"That would be fine Tom. I appreciate your volunteering that 
is if you did in fact volunteer and aren't being punished for 
punching Harry."

"How? You heard me?"

"I guess I did."

"Well I am not being punished and I did volunteer." Tom smiled

"Fine when can I get out of here?"

"The day after tomorrow I have a few tests I want to run then 
I will release you to Mr. Paris' care. Then I expect to see you here 
every other day for the two weeks. That will change to every three 
days the following two weeks and depending on how you are responding 
to the medication and the therapy I will probably change it to once 
every seven days for a month." The doctor paused for a moment he knew 
that what he was going to say next would not go over well with the 

            "Commander you do understand that you will be extremely 
limited to your activities for the next four to six weeks. That means 
you will be spending most of your time in bed. Baths or showers are 
out for the first week and after that you will some assistance until 
we are sure that you experience no dizziness when standing for long 
periods of time." Another pause, he waited but didn't get the 
resistance he expected.

         "Exercise, while normally is recommended within two weeks of 
a heart attack, will be something else I am going to say no to. The 
reason being because of your age, if you were a few years older your 
body would have built collateral circulation around the blockage. 
That was not the case with you. Also, I had to replace the artery 
because the blockage was over 90 percent, instead of putting in a 
stent, which means that wound, if you will, has to heal natural." 
Once again the doctor paused giving the commander a chance to 
comprehend exactly what he had been through.

        "Your eating habits will have to change a bit but we will 
discuss that later. It is important that you adhere to the schedule I 
have outlined. You can not push yourself or your heart too far too 
soon. It maybe that you will never again be able to do some of the 
things you did before."

"I understand doctor. I will do my best to listen to you and 
everyone else."  While listening to the doctor he had been stunned by 
the actual damage his heart had.

"Very well, Mr. Paris, I will discharge the commander to your 
care at 0900 hours the day after tomorrow. Now I have other things I 
must attend to." The doctor left them to continue their discussion.

"Chakotay you will listen to the doctor or I will confine you 
to sickbay for the duration of your recovery." Kathryn threatened.

"Kathryn I promise I will be a good boy and take all my 
medicine regardless of what form it comes in." He grinned at her

"Listen Mister, don't get cocky with me. I am still your 
captain!" She softened the statement with a smile.

"Yes ma'am" Everyone laughed at the sarcasm

"Captain, I will make sure that Chakotay follows the doctor's 
order to the best of both our abilities. If there is any problems I 
will contact the doctor or you immediately."

"Oh you're no fun Tom." Chakotay laughed.

"Hey I was the one with my hands in your chest I will be 
damned if you are going to undo all my work." He smirked

Chakotay sighed "If I haven't thanked you already Tom thank 
you for everything you did. And I promise to listen." 

"Now that that is settled. B'Elanna, Tuvok and myself will be 
available to help Tom with whatever is needed. Although Tuvok will be 
the one to help with the necessary physical things you have to do." 
Tom and Chakotay both blushed and the ladies laughed.

"I think I will be able to handle that by myself."

"No you can't the doctor said you can not take a shower or a 
bath for at least the first week and after that only with assistance. 
Were you not paying attention?" Kathryn felt a bit of anger but 
mostly distress that Chakotay just might give them a hard time over 
all the imposed limitations.

"Oh that is ridiculous. I have been bathing myself since I 
was four years old. I don't need help."

"Chief it's not that you can't do it. You will be weak and 
unsteady for a while. You are going to need help." Tom was worried, 
he didn't want to have to make Chakotay listen, but he wasn't going 
to lose another person to the possible complications from heart 
attack because they wouldn't listen to a doctor. 

"I am not sure about this. I don't know if I can do this." 
Chakotay groaned. There was no way he was getting naked in front of 
either of those men.

"Chakotay you have to, it's either me and Tuvok or the Doc 
which do you prefer?"

"None of the above, you wouldn't want to volunteer B'Elanna 
would you?"  He smiled cheekily at her.

"Been there, done that, have the tee shirt. Chakotay I love 
you dearly but at this point in my life showering with you would be 
like showering with my father." She kissed his cheek and 
whispered, "Besides I know you wouldn't mind a man checking out the 
equipment. You never know you might get lucky." Chakotay pulled back 
in horror.

"No thank you!" 

"What is wrong Chakotay?" Kathryn watched the exchange 
between her first officer and her chief engineer but she couldn't 
figure out why Chakotay looked horrified.
B'Elanna just laughed and winked at him.

"Nothing Kathryn B'Elanna was just reminding me of something 
I had forgotten."

"Well don't upset him B'El he is suppose to remain calm." Tom 
was just as confused as the captain at the little exchange between 
the other two. B'Elanna just smiled and stepped away.

"Chakotay don't worry we will figure out something. You could 
always not bathe for a couple of weeks. Then again you would be on 
your own a lot sooner then the doctor says you should be." Tom 
grinned. He wasn't too thrilled at the idea of having to bathe 
Chakotay but he would do whatever was necessary. He could do it he 
was a medic after all. Besides the thought of seeing any other man 
naked didn't do anything for him anymore, not after what he had been 

"Thanks but I prefer not to go unwashed for four weeks. As a 
matter of fact I have having a difficult time now. I feel rather 
unclean." Chakotay said with a bit of disgust he did feel dirty. He 
hated not bathing everyday, even while he was in the Maquis he made 
sure he was clean. 

"Maybe the doctor was let you use the portable sonic 
cleanser. I will go to your quarters and get you something clean to 
wear." Tom volunteered.

"That would be great Tom thanks. My access code is Chakotay 
alpha two four."

"I will bring the things back in the morning. Can you wait 
until then to get cleaned up?"

"I am tired now. Yes I can wait until the morning. I suppose 
a couple of more hours won't hurt." With that said Chakotay closed 
his eyes and fell asleep.

    Tom decided that it was time for him to go to bed. He still had 
one shift to get through and Harry would be behind him all day. He 
was still angry with his friend and still perplexed at his attitude. 
But He decided he wasn't going to worry about it. It was Harry's 
problem not his. He bid good night to the two women and left.  The 
women followed suit going off to bed.


The following day's duty shift was strained to say the least. 
Tom ignored Harry except when necessary in the line of duty. B'Elanna 
choose to work at the engineering station on the bridge, but she 
spent most of her time growling at Harry. Greg Ayala was at Tactical 
as it was Tuvok's scheduled day off, also spent a lot of time glaring 
at Harry. Kathryn trying her damnest not to tell them all to act 
their ages. Finally giving up she turned the bridge over to Tom and 
went to her ready room.

     Lunch break came Greg invited Tom and B'Elanna to join him and a 
couple of others, which they gladly accepted, leaving Harry miffed 
that he would have spend his hour alone. Kathryn contemplated having 
Harry join her but after the unprofessional display he showed during 
the morning part of the shift she decided against it. She didn't 
think she could make it through the meal without slapping him upside 
the head and telling him to grow up. 

The afternoon was just as bad as if not worse then the 
morning. Harry sighed and grumbled more. B'Elanna practically barking 
out engineering demands to him. Tom trying harder to concentrate on 
flying then what was going on behind him. Kathryn took pity on him 
and at 1400 hours she summoned Tom to her ready room.

"Captain you wanted to see me?"

"Yes, Tom come in sit down."

"Thank you ma'am."

"Tom are you okay? The tension out there is so thick I could 
cut it with a knife."

"I am fine captain. I apologize for my part in the tension. I 
want to apologize to Harry but part of me is saying that it should be 
him who apologizes, even though I am the one who hit him."

"Well I can understand it is hard to be in conflict with your 
best friend and then have to work with them. Believe I have been 
there, quite recently too."

"Permission to speak freely captain."

"Of course Tom."

"Captain you don't blame yourself for Chakotay's heart attack 
do you?"

"Boy no one could ever accuse you of not being perceptive. As 
a matter of fact I do feeling some responsibility yes."

"Captain the doctor said that although Chakotay had been 
stressed lately he would have had the heart attack soon enough. It 
isn't your fault."

"Thank you Tom I will try and remember that."

"You're welcome Captain, now if there is nothing else I 
should get back to flying this ship towards home."

"Actually I decided to start your leave a bit sooner. You are 
off as of now. You will have a few things to do before Chakotay is 
released from sickbay. Go and take care of them and relax for the 
evening you are going to need the rest I am sure of it." She smiled 
gently at him.

"Captain are you saying that you believe the commander will 
be a troublesome patient?" He grinned 

"I refuse to answer that Lieutenant. Now go." She smiled and 

"Yes ma'am" Tom stood and left the ready room by way of the 
outer door, deciding not to give Harry one more thing to bitch about.

Tom spent the evening moving some of his things into 
Chakotay's quarters. He and Chakotay had spoken about it that 
afternoon they agreed that it didn't make sense for Tom to keep going 
back and forward to his quarters for clothes and things. Tom had 
spent time cleaning and putting his things away, he didn't want 
Chakotay to feel as if he had moved in and taken over. The captain 
had suggested that Tom have a single bed put in the lounge area for 
him to sleep on. The couch would not do for six weeks. On one of his 
trips from his quarters to Chakotay's he ran into Harry.

"Going somewhere?" Harry spitted.

"Yes as a matter of fact I am." Tom sighed he really didn't 
want to get into this with him right now.

"Leaving the ship because you know I am right and you can't 
handle it?" disdain dripping from his tongue. 

"No as a matter of fact, not that it's any of your business, 
but I am moving into Chakotay's quarters, I will be taking care of 
him for the next six weeks."

"Good God, you have got to be the saddest person on this 
ship!" Harry was disgusted and made no effort to hide it."Moving in 
with the commander to make a few more brownie points. Jesus the guy 
had a heart attack he doesn't need a babysitter."  The disgust quite 
obvious on his face.

"You know Harry, if I thought it would make a fucking 
difference to you I would explain what actually happened to Chakotay 
and why he will be almost bedridden for the next six weeks. But you 
can't get your head out of your ass long enough to give a shit about 
anyone but yourself. I don't know what your problem is but at this 
point I don't really give a crap. Get over yourself okay." Tom could 
feel himself shaking with anger.

"My problem is that no one seems to understand that the great 
Commander Chakotay is in fact just a man and he is no better than the 
rest of us. I didn't see people falling all over me whenever I was 
injured or sick. Hell I died and people didn't go through the 
bullshit they are laying out now because the commander had a heart 

"Oh my god!" Tom felt his entire body stiffen and longer to 
release the tension by punching Harry yet again but he refrained.

        "I can not believe you have the fucking nerve to say that! I 
cared each and every time! I was there each and every time! Most of 
the damn crew cared. But you just never bothered to thank anyone 
after the first few times so people backed off. You really are a self-
centered cryass child! I don't have the time for you and your sorry 
self." Tom knew he was shouting but he didn't care. He turned to walk 
away before he did something he would regret. His self- control 
teetering just this side of being maintained.

"I am not the one who is sorry and when the commander kicks 
you to the curb and the crew turns against you again. You will have 
time for me." Harry spat at him with the self-confidence of someone 
who just knew he was right. Tom turned back around to face Harry.

"Even if every person on this ship turns their back on me 
when this is all over I will never again have time for you. I want 
nothing to do with you ever again. We have to work together, I am 
enough of an officer to do but as for anything else. I would rather 
rot in my quarters alone then spend one minute in your presence. See 
ya asshole." Again turning away from the person he had thought would 
be his friend forever. 

"What not gonna hit me again before you leave?" 

"You aren't worth the energy." Tom threw out at him from over 
his shoulder. He then walked away with his head held high but he 
couldn't help but seethe with anger.

"Whatever Paris you will be back you always come back. I am 
the best friend you have ever had." Harry yelled after him.

"Is there a problem Ensign Kim?" Tuvok was standing behind 
him. He heard the whole conversation.

"Not anymore Commander, I just found out that Tom Paris is 
not the person I thought he was."

"Ensign Kim there is a matter that I wish to discuss with you 
regarding the incident on the holodeck two days ago. Perhaps we 
should go to your quarters."

"Fine." Harry turned and walked not waiting to see if Tuvok 
was following. He knew he would. Now he had to figure out how to 
change his story if Paris was going to turn his back on him after he 
saved his ass Harry wasn't going to worry anymore about what happens 
to him.

       When he reached his door he keyed in his code, reminding 
himself to change it so his former friend couldn't break in and beg 
him for forgiveness.

"Have a seat Tuvok can I get you something?"

"No thank you Ensign. I will come right to the point of my 
need to speak to you. I want to know why you lied to me about what 
happened on the holodeck?" Harry's mouth dropped open.

"I. UM I."

"Ensign, not only did Mr. Dalby and several others inform me 
that it was Lieutenant Paris who hit you, but the lieutenant told me 
himself. Again my question is why did you feel the need to lie to me?"

"Stupid me didn't want to get Lieutenant Paris in trouble. He 
was unprovoked and there was no excuse for him hitting me. I didn't 
want someone who I thought was my friend to get in trouble."

"You believe that the lieutenant had no reason to hit you?"

"Yes. I didn't do anything to him. I caused him no harm."

"Did you not think that reminding him of his failures and the 
fact that until a year ago the commander and he were not on the best 
of terms reason for him to hit you?"

"No I was stated facts."

"Facts as you saw them?"

"Facts as they are." Harry was getting annoyed why didn't 
anyone understand that he was right, that the commander would throw 
everything back in Paris' face one of these days.

"You think so poorly of the commander that even after the 
lieutenant was instrumental in saving his life that he would at some 
point turn his back on the lieutenant and his friendship?"

"I was just stating from experience that Commander Chakotay 
does not remember the good things Lieutenant Paris does for a long 
period of time."

"Perhaps you have not noticed that Chakotay and Tom have 
become friends over the past year."

"Oh I noticed alright. I have had to spend time watching them 
play pool while I just sit there. I was around for a talk of theirs 
and I listened to Paris talk about things they discussed and 
straightened out. But what Paris doesn't realize is that the 
commander is just doing what the captain ordered him to do. Play nice 
with the chief helmsman."

"Do you think that little of the captain that she would force 
two members of her crew to 'play nice' when it was clear they 

"It has nothing to do with the captain Tuvok. I have a high 
opinion of her but I also believe that she would in fact request that 
the commander be nice to Lieutenant Paris just to keep the peace."

       While Harry was explaining himself Tuvok noticed that he was 
actually proclaiming his jealousy of the friendship that had formed 
between the two officers. He was angry that his friend had found 
another to spend time with. Tuvok came to the logical conclusion that 
Harry Kim did not want to share his friend Tom Paris with anyone. 

"Mr. Kim I am going to ask you a direct and probably crude 
question. I do not expect you to answer me. The question is something 
for you only to think about and arrive at a conclusion on your own. 
If however you wish to discuss your answer I will be available."

"What is the question Tuvok." Harry just wanted this 
whole "discussion" to be over with. He wanted to get rid of his anger 
and he couldn't do it with the Vulcan around.

"Are you jealous of the friendship that Chakotay and Tom have 

"Oh Please!"

"Do not answer me Mr. Kim not now. I want you to think about 
it and think about your reaction to the commander being ill. Would 
you have reacted the same way if it were me who had taken ill? Would 
you have reacted the same way if it were Tom or B'Elanna or the 
captain for that matter? Each of the people I have mentioned have had 
the same impact on most of the crew. If any one of us were to the one 
where the commander is now the reactions would have been the same 
from the crew. I will leave you now with these things to think about. 
Good Night Mr. Kim."

      Before Harry could say another Tuvok stood and left his 
quarters. Once the door closed Harry picked up the first thing within 
his reach and threw it at the door. Pompous Vulcan!