TITLE: My Wild Irish Rose
PART: 1/3
AUTHOR: Reanne Moreau
SERIES: Sequel to Alone and At the Dimming of the Day
RATING: NC-17 (anyone under 18 get lost)
ARCHIVE: Anywhere, as long as you leave my name on it (JuPiter Station, of
SUMMARY: Kathryn and Tom celebrate her birthday and bring their relationship
out into the open.

After all the angst from "30 Days" I thought we needed a little cheering up.
This is pure fluff and smut (flut? smuff?). Somebody does get tied up, but
anyone looking for real B/D will be
disappointed. Tom and Kat are much too inclined to giggle. The idea for this
story came from a scene in "Year of Hell" where Chakotay gives Kat a watch for
her birthday. I knew Tom could come up with something better. Any ideas for
their next adventure? I'm open to suggestions.

Star Trek Voyager, Tom, Kat and the gang are the property of Paramount. No
copyright infringement is intended.
When I first saw you, I saw love,
And the first time you touched me, I felt love,
And after all this time, you're still the one I love.

You're still the one I run to
The one that I belong to
You're the one I want for life
You're still the one that I love
The only one I dream of
You're still the one I kiss goodnight.

Shania Twain
People shifted restlessly as the staff meeting drew to a close. The tension on
the bridge that day had everyone on edge. Those not involved could sense
something in the air, although they had no idea
what was going on. The captain had been withdrawn and tense, spending most of
the day in her ready room. Chakotay spoke only to issue orders or reply to a
direct question. Those who paid any attention to that sort of thing thought it
odd that he barely glanced at the captain all day; he usually spent quite a lot
of time looking at her. They were perfectly civil, but the usual friendly
banter was missing.

Both of them treated Paris more formally than was their habit. The captain
never once leaned over his station, resting her hand on his shoulder. He never
turned in his seat to acknowledge an order or
make some offhand remark; instead sitting ramrod straight in his chair and
replying crisply to any order directed at him by his superior officers.

The staff meeting had proceeded with the same formality. They could have been
making a training video on proper conduct by senior officers. The minute
Janeway dismissed them, Chakotay disappeared and the captain shifted in her
chair. She raised a hand to stop their departure.

"If I might have a moment of your time ..."

B'Elanna looked at Harry and shrugged. Maybe they were finally going to find
out what was going on here.

Janeway looked around the room at the faces regarding her expectantly. "I
didn't want to bring this up until we were off duty. It's of a personal
nature." Her mind went blank, the carefully thought-out
speech completely forgotten. She squirmed a little and shot Tom a lethal look
when she noticed him grinning at her like a Cheshire cat.

"Is something wrong, Captain?" Neelix looked at her with concern. It wasn't
like her to be at a loss for words.

"Everything is fine, Neelix. I'm just not sure how to say this. For the last
several weeks ..." She paused and took a deep breath, figuring it was best to
just blurt it out and get it over with.

Tom got up and walked over to her chair. It wasn't often he got to see Kathryn
flustered. She was positively adorable when she blushed. He jumped in before
she could continue, resting a hand on her shoulder and grinning at the

"For the last several weeks Kathryn and I have been seeing each other and we
thought it was time to get everything out in the open." Kathryn reached up and
entwined her fingers with his. They shared
a warm glance, then turned to face their friends.

There was a moment of stunned silence, then everyone started talking at once.
Everyone except Tuvok, of course, who merely raised a questioning eyebrow.

Neelix continued to babble joyfully. B'Elanna stalked up to Tom and punched
him none too gently in the arm.

"Pig! Why they hell didn't you tell us? We've been walking around feeling
guilty for nothing!"

Tom rubbed his arm and grinned. "We kind of liked having it be our little
secret for a while. Besides, you two are never vertical for more than five
minutes after you get off duty."

B'Elanna bit her lip and smiled at him almost shyly. Harry came up behind her,
wrapping his arms around his girlfriend's waist. "So, how did all this get
started?" He addressed the captain, who still had possession of Tom's hand.
Kathryn somehow found a tactful way of describing how they had gotten together,
without mentioning Chakotay, B'Elanna's sickbay declaration of love to Harry,
or rug burn.

Tom pulled Kathryn to her feet, wrapping her in his arms and planting a kiss on
her nose. "I guess you're stuck with me now that the cat's out of the bag."

"I have a feeling I was stuck with you the day we met." It was such a relief
to have their relationship out in the open, at least this far. No one had
voiced an objection, although Tuvok had yet to comment. The momentary silence
in the room caught their attention. Tom and Kathryn became aware that everyone
was looking at them.

Harry shook his head. "This is going to take some getting used to."

"Not that we aren't all happy for you. I'm sure the entire crew will want to
offer you their congratulations." Kathryn could see that Neelix was
practically planning the wedding already. She quickly informed him that they
hadn't decided yet when or how to inform the rest of the crew. He departed for
the mess hall looking as if he would burst from the strain of keeping the
information to himself.

"I take it Chakotay knows?" Torres had been dying to ask that question.

Kathryn nodded glumly. "He came up behind me on the holodeck yesterday and I
mistook him for Tom. I had planned to tell him myself before the meeting."

B'Elanna would have given her right arm to have seen *that.* It had to happen
sooner or later; the captain had been keeping him at a distance for years and
it was about time he moved on. "He had to find out some time; just give him a
little while to cool off." She was already running through lists of eligible
crew members who might be willing to distract the first officer from his
brooding - and knowing him, he *was* brooding. "Maybe now Chakotay can find
someone who'll make him as happy as these idiots make us." She glared at
Paris. "Not that my ego isn't a little bruised that Tom got over me so

Harry slanted an affectionately exasperated look at B'Elanna. "To tell the
truth, we were both feeling a little guilty, Tom. Maybe now we can get back to
normal. I've missed the way it used to be, the three of us just hanging out
and talking." He belatedly included Kathryn with a smile. "Except now there'll
be four of us."

The captain knew it would be some time before Harry and B'Elanna could see her
as just one of the group. However, she was beginning to realize that being
with Tom had the added benefit of bringing her closer to the people she already
considered friends, despite the difference in rank.

Kathryn left Tom chatting with Kim and Torres and drifted over to speak to
Tuvok. Her old friend still hadn't uttered a word. "Well, Tuvok, aren't you
going to say anything? I thought you would at
least scold me for keeping this a secret from you."

"I have not been completely unaware of your relationship with Lt. Paris,
therefore nothing was, in fact, kept from me."

Kathryn just looked at him in astonishment. He moved a fraction of an inch
closer and spoke quietly. She could have sworn there was a twinkle in those
dark Vulcan eyes.

"Shall I tell you how often you left your seat unnecessarily to observe
something on Lt. Paris' console? Or how many times you stole glances at each
other when you thought no one was watching?" His captain was turning decidedly
pink. "And you seem to have forgotten that, like all Vulcans, I am somewhat

That was something she hadn't considered. Her mind racing, Kathryn catalogued
some of the highly improper thoughts she'd had about her helm officer during
slow moments on the bridge. Not to mention what Tom's fertile imagination had
come up with. If Tuvok had caught even the faintest flavor of some of them ...

Tuvok decided that he'd let her squirm long enough. "I consider Mr. Paris an
acceptable choice for your mate, certainly preferable to ... other choices you
might have made. He is a senior officer, but
not in a position to challenge your authority. He is well regarded by the
crew, and except for a somewhat questionable sense of humor, a man of good

Coming from a Vulcan, that was high praise. Kathryn briefly rested her hand on
his arm. "Thank you, Tuvok, but I didn't make a list of his virtues and vices.
I fell in love with him - and he makes me very happy."

"Love is an irrational emotional state."

"It certainly is." They shared a conspiratorial glance. For a rational,
unemotional being, Kathryn had never seen a man so completely in love with his
wife. "Let's hope we never come to our senses."

The message was on the captain's computer terminal when she got off duty. It
simply instructed her to go to holodeck 2 to collect her birthday present.
Kathryn wondered to herself when Tom could have found the time to prepare a
gift. The days since they had revealed their relationship to the senior staff
had been complete chaos. First the exhilaration and disappointment of their
contact with the Alpha quadrant, then the sheer terror of the Hirogen
occupation. Kathryn nearly broke down in tears the first time Tom looked at
her without recognition after being implanted with one of the alien devices.
After the crew took Voyager back they were all busy with repairs. There had
been so little time for being together. Finally, the day before her birthday,
repairs were nearly finished and Kathryn had looked forward to spending the
evening alone with Tom. Tomorrow was her birthday party, which meant she would
be busy socializing well into the night. The crew was badly in need of a

An impressive sight greeted her as the holodeck doors parted. Tom had created
a room that could have been taken from a grand mansion of the eighteenth or
nineteenth century. The bedroom was simply but richly furnished. Kathryn
explored it slowly. Dark mahogany paneling covered the walls. At one end of
the room a fire blazed beneath an ornately carved wooden mantle. The night sky
shone through tall windows draped with green velvet curtains. The only light
came from the fireplace and from candles in sconces on the walls and placed on
every available surface around the room, suffusing it with a warm languid glow.
There was a small table set for two near the hearth,
firelight sparkling off the silver and crystal. Two comfortable wing-back
chairs flanked the table. A sofa separated the sitting and sleeping areas.
The canopied bed was covered in champaign colored
silk, from the curtains to the comforter and sheets. The material caught and
held the flickering candlelight, glowing warmly.

Neatly folded in the middle of the bed was a nightgown and robe; a single white
rose lay across the top with a note beneath it. Kathryn read Tom's message
with a smile. 'I hope you like your birthday
present. I'll join you as soon as the Doctor lets me escape from sickbay.'
She unfolded the nightgown and held it up against her body. It was made from
the palest lavender silk, so sheer and delicate she was afraid it would tear at
the slightest touch. Her uniform and boots were quickly discarded, and after
some hesitation, her underwear followed. Something like this was meant to be
worn next to the skin. It flowed down her body like water. Crossing to the
dressing table, she admired herself in the mirror. Whisper-soft silk caressed
her as she spun around. The neckline left the tops of her shoulders bare and
emphasized the creamy column of her throat.

Kathryn brushed her hair until it fell gleaming around her shoulders, then
pinned it up loosely with the holographic rosebud as an ornament. Returning to
the bed, she picked up the robe and examined its long bell-shaped sleeves and
full skirt. It was probably intended as a bribe for the return of the old blue
bathrobe she had appropriated from Tom in a fit of sentimentality. "Not
likely, Mister." The new robe and slippers were stowed neatly on a nearby
chair. After being in uniform all day the freedom of the loose nightgown and
bare feet felt wonderful.

Climbing into the bed, she couldn't resist reclining among the many pillows to
wait for her lover. Surrounding herself with this kind of luxury was something
she never would have done on her own. The nightgown and matching robe and
slippers must have cost Tom every replicator ration he had. Not to mention the
time it took to program this setting. Kathryn closed her eyes and stretched
luxuriously. Everything that touched her body was made of the softest silk.
The only thing that could possibly feel better against her skin was Tom.

For a moment she considered calling sickbay to see when he would be off duty.
She rejected the idea. Tom would only be distracted, the Doctor would get even
more irritable, and whatever task he had assigned Lt. Paris would take even
longer. Kathryn laughed at her own impatience. She could wait awhile longer.
After everything that had happened they were still together and that alone was
worth celebrating.

Everything could so easily have gone differently. She'd had nightmares of
waking up in sickbay, freed of the Hirogen mind control, only to realize that
the Nazi or Roman Centurion or Visigoth she had killed in battle wore Tom's
face. The two of them had barely spent a night apart since throwing the
Hirogen off the ship, although they were usually too exhausted to do more than
fall asleep in each other's arms.

The captain was working herself into a fine state of melancholia when the
holodeck doors opened. Tom Paris stepped inside, a gym bag slung over his
shoulder, and let his eyes adjust to the dimmer illumination. She sauntered up
to him slowly, knowing perfectly well that the light silhouetted her body
against the thin material of the nightgown. Tom's eyes were riveted on her
until she pressed herself to him, devouring his lips in a passionate kiss.

"I take it you like your birthday present." He was slightly breathless and
still couldn't take his eyes off her.