Title: Things Change 6
Author: Maxine
Pairing: C/P 
Rating: R
Disclaimer: Paramount, Viacom, and whoever else that bought a piece 
of them own them. I am just having some fun.
Feedback: Sure I can take it! Plainedge77@yahoo.com

                         Things Change 6

Tom went back out to the living room and realized that he had 
not checked with the doctor about where Chakotay could eat. Should he 
keep him in bed or could he have him come out and eat on the couch. 
He was sure that the older man wouldn't want to eat in bed but he had 
better check.

"Paris to Sickbay"

"Sickbay here. Is everything all right Lieutenant?"

"Yeah Doc, Chakotay is sleeping. I have a question."

"And that would be?"

"Does Chakotay have to stay in bed or can I have him on the 
couch when he eats? I really don't think he is going to be thrilled 
about eating or rather drinking in his bed."

"The couch is fine Mr. Paris. As long as his feet and legs 
are elevated, make sure to put a pillow or something under his calves 
and feet so that they are at a thirty degree angle."

"Sure thing Doc, thanks. Paris out."

     That done, Tom decided to go through his personal logs, he 
honestly couldn't remember the last time he had sat down and made 
one. When he checked it had been a week since his last entry. The 
morning before Chakotay's heart attack. 'Wow I have really been 
slacking off'. So he sat back and recounted the events of the past 
week. He spoke of the panic and fear he felt when he walked into the 
mess hall and saw Chakotay having the heart attack. The helplessness 
he felt each time they "lost" him when he was first beamed to sickbay 
and then later during the surgery.

         He also thought about the awesome feeling of being trusted, 
first by Chakotay when he agreed to Tom assisting the doctor. Tom 
might be the doctor's assistant but if Chakotay had said no then 
someone else would have been called to assist. Then by the spirits 
who brought him to Chakotay in the spirit plain. To find that he had 
a spirit guide and it was an eagle. Now that was cool. Of course when 
Chakotay and the two guides trusted him to help Chakotay out of the 
coma, the emotions he felt whenever he thought about that were so 
hard to describe. Though he could say they were all really good 
emotions. Finally that last amazing show of trust was when Chakotay 
had agreed to let him help him with his recovery. He honestly 
couldn't say if he thought Chakotay would say no but the possibility 
was there. 

Then he got to the part about Harry, he was still perplexed 
as to why all of a sudden his best friend turned on him. He felt sad 
and hurt after everything Harry had said to him. He had to wonder if 
Harry had actually been using his less then welcome presence at the 
beginning of the journey to insure that Harry always had a friend.

He realized that it was never about Harry being Tom's friend, 
it was about Tom being Harry's friend. That thought caused Tom to 
pause, then he thought about every encounter, every interaction with 
every crewmember over the years. Each time he heard Harry in the 
background saying things like 'Hey well he was being nice because you 
didn't come off as a smart-ass.' Or 'Of course she is flirting with 
you, afterall with all your experience she is guaranteed to have a 
good time.' 

Tom jumped back in his chair as if he had been slapped. Why 
hadn't he seen that? How could he have missed it? Every time he made 
some advance toward a friendship with someone else Harry was there to 
slap him down. Harry would knock back his self-confidence just enough 
for Tom to back off from trying. 'SON OF A BITCH! YOU STUPID 
BASTARD!' Tom could not believe what an idiot he had been. He 
mentally beat himself up for being just gullible enough to believe 
Harry had actually been a real friend.

Once more he went through his mind, thinking about the other 
people he called friend. He thought about their reactions to 
different things. This time he heard B'Elanna ' See I told you they 
would come around." Then there was Greg "I for one am glad I knew a 
long time again just how good a friend you can be.' Or Tuvok, 'I 
consider you among my circle of friends.' Then finally Chakotay, "I 
trust you Tom." Those were the voices of his real friends he knew 
that now. Feeling a lot better then he had a few minutes earlier Tom 
ended his personal log. He heard Chakotay call out to him at that 
point he got up and went to see what he needed.

"You okay Chief?" Tom asked as he raised the lights a bit.

"Yes, I heard a noise and wasn't sure if you were okay or 
not." Chakotay seemed a bit worried.

"Nah! I was just updating my personal log, I may have knocked 
something over while I was sitting at you desk. Are you hungry?"

"Yea I am, but I also need to pee." Chakotay said quietly. 
Although they had just discussed this a couple of hours ago, he still 
felt a bit awkward.

"Okay, let me get the urinal." Tom swallowed his 
nervousness. 'I can do this. I can help him.' He kept saying over and 
over to himself as he went to the bathroom.
When he returned Chakotay looked at him and saw the slightest hint of 

"Tom if you can't do this." Tom held up his hand.

"No, Chief, I am okay. Really." He smiled a bit.

"Okay as long as you are all right with this."

"I am a professional remember."  Tom handed him the urinal, 
took hold of his left arm from underneath and pulled Chakotay 
upright. Wrapping his other arm around the back of the older Tom 
stood there and held him. He tried not to notice the feel of 
Chakotay's skin under his hands. He wasn't going to glance over the 
older man's shoulder for a quick peek, but he did anyway and he 
blushed. 'Geez he's big. Lucky Guy.' Then Tom mentally slapped 

Meanwhile, Chakotay was trying to ignore the younger man hold 
on to him. 'I can do this. I am not feeling his arm around me.' He 
repeated over and over. Once done he sighed and shivered.

"You okay?" Tom asked as he lessened his hold on Chakotay.

"Yes, much better, thanks Tom." He said as he leaned back and 
handed Tom the urinal.

"Okay, be right back and then you get a trip to the couch for 
your lunch."

"Tuvok gonna beam me there?"

"Nope we are going to do it the old-fashion way." Tom called 
from the bathroom. He walked out and went to the living room. He was 
soon back with the chair from Chakotay's desk. 

"I am going to take you for a ride." He smiled and helped 
Chakotay swing his legs over the side of the bed. 

"Wrap your arms around my neck, then hang on. Don't resist me 
you will hurt me." Tom was in full professional medic mode now.

"Let me do all the work." He said as he stood up bringing the 
other man with him. Chakotay's legs were a bit shaking so Tom waited, 
giving him a couple of seconds to steady himself.

"You okay, Chief?"

"Yeah, it's just been a while since I used the legs you 
know." Tom nodded his understanding.

"Ready?" Chakotay nodded yes. "Okay I need to you to turn 
just a bit and then I will lower you into the chair. Remember don't 
fight me." Together they turned a bit and then Tom lowered Chakotay 
into the chair. Chakotay pulled his arms from around Tom his whole 
body was shaking.

"Why am I shaking like this?"

"Chief you have been flat on your back for a week. Your body 
has been through one hell of a battle. It's a reaction to it all. 
Just relax, tell me, do you feel okay any light-headedness or 

"A bit light-headed yes." Chakotay felt himself start to 
sweat and instantly he began to panic. His mind automatically going 
back to a week ago, the shaking increased.

"Tom something is wrong. I don't feel well." Tom having 
watched the entire set of emotions run across Chakotay's face.

"Chief, just breath, this is all your body's natural reaction 
to everything. It's okay." Tom spoke softly squatting down to look 
Chakotay in the eye.

'Chief, it's okay. You aren't having another heart attack. 
You just got out of sickbay, this is normal trust me." Still speaking 
softly he began to caress Chakotay's arms trying to sooth him. He 
continued doing this and talking for a few minutes helping Chakotay 
calm down. Tom noticed that he had closed his eyes and was really 
concentrating on his breathing, as if he was trying to find his 
center. After a time the older man seemed to have calmed considerably 
and opened his eyes.

"Better?" Still speaking in a hushed tone.

'Yeah, sorry, thanks." Chakotay was almost afraid to say the 

"Don't be sorry, I should have warned you it might happen. 
Now you think you are ready for a short ride?" Unconsciously Tom had 
continued to gently caress his arms, Chakotay noticed but didn't say 
anything. That touch is what helped him calm himself. 

"I suppose so. You up for the push?"

"Who said I was going to push you? I am going to pull better 
Putting action to words Tom walked around to stand behind him, took 
hold of the chair and pulled. Chakotay held on as he felt the chair 
move, the ride was indeed quick,  but he knew it he was being turned 
in the chair to face the couch.

"I am impressed." Chakotay looked up and smiled at Tom, Tom 
smiled back.

"Okay same as before only in reverse." Again putting action 
to his words Tom leaned down as Chakotay hooked his arms around his 
neck he lifted. Together they turned and Chakotay was on the couch 
being pulled back to lean against the side and his legs swung to lie 
out in front of him. Tom got the pillow he had placed there earlier 
and slid it under his feet and calved and then threw his own blanket 
over Chakotay's legs. Everything done swiftly and professional. 
Chakotay felt a little berated and embarrassed he actually had 
enjoyed having his arms around Tom he felt good. Mentally shaking his 
head, 'Don't go there, old man he is afraid of men in that way 

"Comfortable?" Tom asked while going through his own mental 
slapping. 'He is a patient doesn't matter what you felt when his arms 
were around you. Besides you left that side of you back at the 
Academy remember.'

"Yes thanks what's for lunch?"

"Well seeing how you are limited to liquids for the next 
couple of days. I thought you would like some miso and tofu soup. 
It's high in protein and tofu is good for the heart." Tom smiled as 
he handed Chakotay the cup of soup and a napkin. When Chakotay saw 
the cup he looked at Tom with a question in his eyes.

"What you want me to feed you to?" Tom joked.

"NO! Just curious why a the cup and not a bowl"

"Well if I give you a bowl, where you got to put it? I can 
move the chair but the desk and table are bolted to the floor. This 
way your soup will end up in you and not on you." Tom grinned looking 
very pleased with himself that he had thought of that.

"Aren't you the clever one. Thank you. What are you having?"

"I am going to wait until Tuvok gets here and then I am going 
to go to the mess hall. I don't want to eat real food in front of you 
right now. Doesn't seem fair."

"Oh, okay I thought we would eat together." Chakotay seemed a 
bit disappointed to Tom.

"We will once you are able to actually eat food. I feel a bit 
strange eating when you can't."

"You know Tom, you have got to be the most considerate person 
I have ever met.  Thank you very much. You are right I would 
feel "cheated" that I can't bite into something."  Chakotay smiled 
and started drinking his soup. 

The door chime rang and Chakotay called for the person to 
enter. Tuvok came in.

"Good Afternoon Commander, Tom."

"Hi Tuvok."

"Good Afternoon Tuvok, please, call me Chakotay."

"Thank you Chakotay. How are you feeling?"

"I am okay, a bit weak but I suppose that is expected."

"Yes, I understand it is. How did you get Chakotay to the 
couch Tom?"

"I pulled him with his chair. The doc said he could sit up 
out here for about an hour. I am going to go and get something to eat 
in the mess hall. I will be back in time to help you get back into 

"Take your time Tom, I am sure I can manage with Chakotay by 
myself. Remember that this time is for you to take a break."

"I know Tuvok but there isn't much I want to do tonight." Tom 
didn't want either man to know he was trying to avoid Harry. He knew 
that Harry wouldn't show up in the mess hall for at least another 
hour. He wasn't ready to see the guy just yet.

"Very well, enjoy your meal Tom."

"Thanks, I'll be back chief, no running laps while I am 
gone." He smiled and left. Chakotay just shook his head

"Tuvok Please sit."

"Thank you, first do you need something to drink?"

"A cup of tea would be great. It's under Cee Pee 4 Eva"

Tuvok nodded and went to order the special blend of tea. 
Returning with the hot brew once it materialized. Placing it on the 
low table behind Chakotay he took his seat.

"Chakotay I thought you and I should discuss a few things." 
Chakotay nodded his head to indicate for Tuvok to continue.

"The captain has informed me that you will require help with 
some very personal needs. I would understand if you preferred not 
find yourself being "exposed", so to speak to two male members of the 

"Thank you Tuvok. I would prefer it not to happen but I think 
I will not have a choice in the matter. I don't know how we will work 
it out but I do know that I need to bathe and soon."

"We will do our best then." 

"Tuvok, I need to ask you a question. But I don't know if it 
is invading Tom's or Harry's privacy by asking it."

"I will do my best to answer anything you feel the need to 
ask, if I feel it would be an invasion of privacy I will let you 

"Thank you. Tom gave me a brief synopsis of things that 
happened between him and Harry. He also told me that you heard the 
last incident in the corridor last night."

"Yes, I was unfortunate enough to hear the altercation last 
evening. What is it you want to know Chakotay?'

"I am not sure if I really want to know but, I need to know.  
Is Harry's animosity is directed at Tom or me. Tom said it was 
towards us, as in our friendship. I don't doubt what Tom said but I 
have a feeling he left something out."

"While I do not know exactly what Tom told you, I cam tell 
you that Harry's animosity is towards the friendship that you have 
with Tom, but it is also towards every friendship Tom has made over 
the years. Unfortunately at this time yours is the one at the 

"Why would Harry resent or begrudge Tom any friendships? I 
don't understand."

"As I explained to Tom this is just my observation. What I 
heard when he and Harry were arguing and what I heard from Harry, 
though he didn't realize he was saying it, is that Harry expected Tom 
to always need him. Over the years Tom has made great strides in 
becoming not only a very important member of the crew but also a 
friend to many. Most of the crew was slow in seeing this but now that 
they have, and they are acknowledging him. In doing this, Tom being 
the friendly high-spirited person he is takes hold of these offers of 
friendship and makes them grow." 

"Why would this cause a problem for Harry?"

"Because Harry believed from the beginning that Tom would 
always need him and his friendship. Now, in Harry's eyes, Tom doesn't 
so he resents everyone who has taken his friend away."

"Tom was right that is infantile. Harry is Tom's best friend, 
always has been, he would sooner cut off his arm than leave Harry 

"That may be true but Harry doesn't see it that way. As I 
stated before, right now, because Tom is once again being the only 
kind of friend he knows how to be, you are the one who is bringing 
about the loss of Harry's friend."

"Maybe it would be best after all if Tom wasn't the one here 
with me. I don't want to cause him any problems."

"Chakotay, Tom wants to be here, he needs to be here. For you 
to send him away now it would be another rejection by another friend. 
Tom may be tough on the outside but I believe inside he is quite soft 
and he takes everything to heart. While I do not believe if you told 
him to go he would be angry, I think he would be hurt."

"Well that is the last thing I want to do. I just can't 
believe Harry, I know Tom is hurt by things Harry said to him, though 
I don't know everything I am sure that it was very cruel."

"It was." If a Vulcan could look disgusted Chakotay was sure 
that was what he saw on Tuvok's face.

"Thank you Tuvok for being honest with me. Again, I didn't 
doubt that Tom wasn't honest, I knew he left things out. I am upset 
for Tom and if I could feel anger towards Harry I would. The only 
thing I feel for him is pity because he lost the best friend anyone 
could ever ask for." Tuvok could see that Chakotay meant what he said 
and nodded his agreement.

Tuvok got up and took the now empty cup from Chakotay and 
brought it to the recycler. Coming back he noticed that Chakotay 
looked tired.

"Chakotay would you like to go back to bed now?"

"HMM yes I am feeling tired. Why do I feel so tired?"

"I would say it is just your body telling you it needs to 
rest to get better. Why don't I get you to bed you can rest a while 
and then Tom and I will see to your personal needs." Chakotay sighed 
and nodded. 

      Chakotay told Tuvok how Tom managed to get him from the bedroom 
to the living room and they decided that the reverse was the best 
course of action. As Tuvok was lifting Chakotay Tom came through the 

"Hey I said I would help." Tom came over quickly and grabbed 
Chakotay around the waist for extra support. 

"Chakotay was feeling tired and I did not want him to fall 
asleep in the position he was in." Tuvok answered as the two men 
turned and placed Chakotay in the chair.

"I am sorry I took so long." 

"Tom you weren't gone more then a half hour. It's okay." 
Chakotay said as he sat and started to shake as he had earlier. Tom 
automatically squatted down and proceeded to calm him as he had 
earlier. A minute or two passed and Chakotay seemed calmer.

"You good to go?" Tom whispered.

"Yeah, thanks." Chakotay gave him a smile.

"No problem." Tom smiled back as he stood and indicated to 
Tuvok that Chakotay was ready. The entire scene was observed by Tuvok 
and mentally made a note to watch the relationship between the two 

        Tom pulled and Tuvok pushed. They got Chakotay into his room, 
then Tom mirrored his earlier actions to help the older man back on 
to the bed. Tom and Tuvok helped Chakotay into the bed and get 

"Chakotay would you like to get cleaned up now or wait?" 
Tuvok asked as he stepped back from the side of the bed.

"I really don't want to go any longer with getting cleaned 
up. I feel like half of sickbay is stuck to my skin." He stated sat 
he sat back and closed his eyes. Chakotay was tired but he hated 
going to sleep feeling dirty.

"I know what you mean Chief, I will get what we need." Tom 
headed to the bathroom.

"Chakotay?" Tuvok gently called him when he looked up. "Will 
you be comfortable or not."

"Tuvok, whether I am completely comfortable or not it has to 
be done. I can't sleep feeling like this." Chakotay resigned himself 
to the fact that he would have to give up a little dignity if he 
wanted to feel even somewhat clean. 

Tom returned with a basin of warm soapy water, some towels and a 
couple of wash clothes. He then went back into the bathroom and again 
returned with another basin this one filled with warm water only.

"Okay I got it all figured out, to get this over with as 
quick and as painlessly as possible. Tuvok gets the half from the 
thighs down, I get the half from the belly button up and when we are 
done you get to do what's left. How does that sound?" Tom was quite 
proud of himself for figuring out a way to get the three of them 
through a potentially embarrassing situation. As he finished a comm 
badge went off. It was Tuvok's.

"Ayala to Tuvok"

"Tuvok here."

"Commander I apologize for disturbing you but there is a 
problem on holodeck three that needs attention. I am already here but 
Ensign Kim is demanding you be present." That the mention of Harry's 
name Tom stiffened unconsciously.

"On my way, Tuvok out. Gentlemen I am sorry. If you wish to 
wait until I return."

"Nah, we can handle it Tuvok." Tom hoped the worried he felt 
wasn't heard in his voice.

"Very well I do apologize and I will see you tomorrow." Tuvok 

"Well Chief, it looks like its just you and me." Tom laughed 

"You okay Tom?"

"Yeah I am fine. I guess I'm a little uncomfortable but I can 
do this." Once he convinced himself he went about getting everything 
ready. He helped Chakotay turn to one side and placed a large towel 
on the bed and then turned him back. 

"I am going to start at your feet and work my way up. While I 
am doing that you can wash your face,neck and chest. The hair will 
have to wait until I check with the doc about having you hanging your 
head over the side of the bed. Can you wait on that until tomorrow?" 
Tom busied himself with making clothes wet and grabbing towels, not 
really wanting to look at Chakotay. Then he did look up and he smiled.

"Yes my hair can wait another day. It's my skin that feels 
gross." Chakotay laughed.

"Okay here we go." Tom handed the Chakotay one cloth, he took 
the other and began washing his feet and calves. 

Chakotay concentrated on getting his face,neck and chest 
washed, he tried very hard not to think about the blonde at the other 
end or what he was doing. Tom had a gentle touch, there was no 
scrubbing, and the only thing Chakotay could liken it to was a soft 
caress. He thought back to the other times that Tom seemed to caress 
him. When he felt panicked after being moved. Tom soothed him and 
comforted him with his voice and his hands. The hands of a 
lover..What? Where did that come from? Ignore that thought right now, 
he demanded of his mind. It was a bit more difficult than he would 
have liked especially when Tom was now almost stroking his calves. 
Chakotay couldn't help but leaned back into the pillow and mentally 

Tom was having similar problems trying hard not to think 
about the skin he was washing. Chakotay was not a hairy man, his skin 
was silky to the touch. Tom couldn't stop himself from thinking what 
it would feel like to have that skin caress his own. Shaking his head 
slightly hoping that Chakotay didn't notice that he was having some 
difficulty breathing. He again tried to concentrate on the task at 
hand. But as he made his way up to the strong muscular thighs his 
thoughts wandered to wondering again how it would feel to be wrapped 
around this skin. The feel of it as it moved over him while making 
love.. What? NO! Not happening! Tom did a quick mental slap. Over to 
the other thigh, leaning over Chakotay, he thought he heard Chakotay 
take a deep breath or was that a gasp? Tom ignored it, he had to, 
because he knew if he looked up Chakotay would see in his eyes what 
was going on in his mind.

When Tom leaned over him, Chakotay swore under his breath, he 
could smell Tom and spirits did he smell good! Chakotay didn't think 
he was going to be able to sit here and have Tom wash him too often. 
He just knew his self-control would snap if he didn't find a way to 
ignore Tom. His eyes were closed hands at his sides he fought hard 
not to grab Tom and pull him into a passionate kiss. Then he felt his 
heart pounding and he snapped open his eyes. Then he felt panic 
raising up, the feeling of his heart working harder then he thought 
it should. Trying to calm himself down, he began taking deep breaths.

Tom finished with Chakotay's legs and stood up. He then 
noticed Chakotay's breathing.

"Chief? You okay?"

"Yeah, just got a little panicked."

"Did I hurt you? I tried to be as gentle as I could." Tom was 
worried, maybe he did hurt him when he was lost in thought.

"No Tom you didn't hurt me. Sometimes I can feel my heart 
pounding and it is kind of scary that is all."

"Are you sure? You want me to call the doc or something?"

"Tom, really I am fine. I guess maybe because I have been 
sitting up for so long. The doctor did say I needed to lay down 
more." Chakotay reached for Tom's arm, he felt a jolt of electricity 
run through him but he didn't react, he couldn't. Scaring Tom was the 
last thing he wanted to do.

"You want to finish this up tomorrow?" Tom whispered he 
couldn't really find his voice when Chakotay touched him he felt 
something electric pass through him. 

"No I am okay now, let's finish up."

"Okay, if you are sure. I will have you turn over on your 
stomach so I can get the back of your legs that might help with the 
panic feeling." He quickly dried Chakotay's legs and helped him lay 
down then he rolled him over. Tom started again being more attentive 
to the reactions Chakotay might be having. He was determined now to 
get the man cleaned and get him to go to sleep. It was obvious he had 
been up too long. Tom ignored the sight of Chakotay's ass covered 
only by a thin pair of shorts. 

"I will do your back now and then the only thing that is left 
will be 'your area'." Tom referred back to his original dividing of 
Chakotay's body.

"Alright."  Chakotay mumbled into his pillow. He really 
wanted this over with.

         Tom finished his task quickly and helped Chakotay turn back 
over, repositioning him so he was lying more then sitting, Tom took 
the cloth that was still clutched in Chakotay's hand. He put the two 
in the basin and took a third one and wet it. Handing to Chakotay, he 
turned his back to give the man at least a bit of privacy.  Chakotay 
cleaned himself up as quickly as possible, he just wanted to go to 
sleep at this point.

"All done." He said quietly. Tom turned around and took the 
cloth, then handing Chakotay a towel and a clean pair of shorts, Tom 
took the one basin to the bathroom and drained the water. 

       Stopping for a moment just to really catch his breath. He 
couldn't believe his thoughts while washing Chakotay. He thought he 
would never have those kinds of thoughts again. Not after Danny and 
Blair were done with him. Obviously he was wrong, he needed to get a 
handle of this he thought. The scene was going to happen quite often 
over the next few weeks, he had to remain professional. He would work 
on it, his 'patient' needed him to stay focused. 

That resolved, for the time being he returned to find Chakotay with 
his eyes closed, he seemed to be sleeping.


"Yeah?" Chakotay answered in a whisper.

"Oh I wasn't sure if you were asleep or not. Sorry, I am just 
going to get the rest of this stuff cleaned up and then I will turn 
down the lights. You need anything?"

"No I am fine, just tired."

"Okay I will just get rid of this and get out of here so you 
can sleep." Tom took the last basin and the towels and discarded them.

"Okay Chief, all done. Good Night, I will be quiet as I can 
when I come to bed."

"Don't worry I have a feeling I won't hear a thing. Tom?" 
Chakotay stopped him as he got to the door.

"Thanks and Good Night." 

"You're welcome. Sleep well, dream sweet." With that Tom left 
the bedroom calling for lights out. He left the door opened slightly 
so he could hear if Chakotay called out. Settling on the couch, 
deciding he was not going to examine his feeling anymore. He grabbed 
his book and sat back. He briefly thought about what could have 
happened with Harry but decided he really didn't care.