By Morticia


ST: Voyager C/P

Rating. SLASH, m/m NC-17

Archive: Anywhere, just let me know, please
Disclaimer: Tom, Chak et al are Paramount's (lucky devils) Angel is
mine (yippee!)

Part 35


When I entered sickbay and saw the ruin that had been Tom Paris, I
was assaulted by a vivid flashback to the day of his original
accident. His corpse was as white as alabaster under a violent film
of blood. His head was just a wound of slashed skin. He had been
completely scalped.

He was dead.

Tom was dead.

My young vibrant pilot, who had suffered so much, survived so much,
had died just weeks from our return to the Alpha Quadrant.

He would never get the chance to return in glory, his past forgiven.
He would never get the chance to go home and restore his relationship
with his father.

He was dead, finally broken beyond any ability to repair, and
Chakotay and I were to blame.

I felt my knees give way as guilt and sorrow overwhelmed me and I
sank to the floor of Sickbay, wailing in horror.


Grabbing a blanket from his bed, I wrapped Chakotay carefully and
hoisted him effortlessly in my arms. He moaned and stirred a little
and I froze in terror that he would wake but then his breathing
slowed again and he lapsed back into unconsciousness.

I realised that I only had a short time to implement my plan. I
didn't dare sedate him in case it harmed him. I had very little
medical knowledge, since my own people were so rarely ill, but I was
fairly sure that sedatives and concussion were a bad combination.

Swiftly I rushed to the door with my precious burden, only to find
that it refused to open. I stepped back and then forward again to
trigger the mechanism. Still the door would not comply. Furiously I
realised in amazement that someone had locked the bloody door.

Swallowing my howl of outrage, in fear of waking my beloved, I ran
back to the bedroom and deposited Chakotay carefully on the bed. Then
I rushed back to the door and pried at it with frantic fingers but
even with all of my superhuman strength I couldn't get it to open.

I battered in furious panic at the resisting metal but to no avail.
The more I panicked, the weaker I became. Fear was draining all my
ability to struggle. So, forced to stop my assault, I trembled in
indecision. Then inspiration hit me. Transporters. Of course, I could
tap into Voyager's transporters and beam us into my ship.

I rushed to Chakotay's terminal and tapped into the control pad. It
stayed black and unresponsive. The damned thing was off line.

I tried the comm. unit but it had also been deactivated.


Guiltily, I wondered whether they had guessed my plan. Then I
realised that it was more likely that they were protecting Chakotay
from the knowledge of Tom's evident suicide bid. This was probably
just their way of ensuring that Chakotay couldn't rush to Tom's side.

I sank down on my haunches in despair and cried.


I was forcibly shaken out of my misery by the Doctor's bewildered cry
of "Captain? Are you alright?"

I looked up at him, his face blurred with my tears.

"How did he do it?" I asked, not really caring what the answer was.
After all, What did it matter now?

"He cut one of his wrists, Captain. For some reason he was in the
guest quarters and he found an old style razor in the bathroom

Miserably I remembered that Voyager's guest quarters stocked all
manner of strange obsolete implements to pander to a visitor's whims.
I could vaguely picture a razor being a thin sharp blade to shave
body hair. It seemed impossible that Tom could have used such an
innocuous item to kill himself.

"If he hadn't been found, his suicide attempt would have definitely
been successful." The Doctor told me solemnly.

As the implication of his words hit me, I reeled with confusion.

"You mean he's not dead? I thought - I thought." my words trailed off
as I realised that Tom's corpse-like pallor was the result of blood-
loss not death.

I struggled to my feet and rushed to Tom's bed, grabbing one of Tom's
frozen hands, my fingers searching for and then finding a pulse. It
was weak and intermittent, but it was there. I sagged with relief.

"Are you positive that it was a suicide attempt?" I pleaded
desperately, "Couldn't it have been an accident or at least just a
cry for help?"

"Given the amount of self-mutilation before he slashed his wrist, I
doubt that he was in a state of mind to make a deliberate `cry for
help' Captain. That would take a degree of pre-meditation that I
judge he was incapable of. Besides, he had no reason to suppose he
would be found in time to be saved."

"Who did find him?" I asked in confusion

The Doctor looked momentarily sheepish

"I - um - well I always had an auto-response life sign monitor on Tom
when he was paralyzed and I simply forgot to remove it after he
returned from V'rakn." He confessed "As soon as his condition became
critical he was immediately transported here and I was brought on
line to treat him."

"Thank god you did" I breathed "He's so pale, he looks terrible. Are
you sure that he will survive?"

"To be honest, I'm not 100 percent sure yet, although his chances are
good. He sliced an artery and lost so much blood that it was almost
impossible to revive him. It complicated matters that he has a rare
blood type and my reserves were already low, given his previous
accident. Fortunately Harry Kim is the same blood group and I hooked
him straight into the transfusion."

"Where is Harry now?" I asked in concern. I was well aware of how
close Tom and Harry were. Harry must have been shattered by Tom's
suicide attempt.

"I'm not sure, as soon as he saw that Tom was stable, he shot off
without explanation. He was very distraught."

"I can imagine. I hope he's alright. Damn, what a mess. I should
never have let Tom go off alone."

"I still don't understand what happened, Captain. I know that he was
looking forwards to his wedding, but surely a mere delay would not
have affected him so drastically? Could the news of our imminent
return to the Alpha Quadrant have terrified him so badly? Surely he's
still not afraid of going back to jail?"

I realised that the Doctor had not been informed of the `other'
implication of Angel's arrival.

"No, I don't believe Tom's actions have anything to do with the
prospect of us returning home. His problems are here on Voyager. I
think the wedding has been cancelled, at least I'm sure that Tom
believes it has."


"Because the ship that arrived to rescue us was piloted by an old
flame of Chakotay, and it appears that the Commander is now having
second thoughts about where his loyalties should lie."

The Doctor looked at me in stunned comprehension

"You mean he is leaving Tom for this person?"

"I don't know. Possibly" I admitted

If I had ever doubted the Doctor's capacity for true emotion, the
fury on his holographic face now would have convinced me

"I don't believe it. Tom and Chakotay have been through so much
together. They love each other. How could Chakotay turn his back on
Tom after everything that has happened? He knows how much Tom needs
him. Surely this proves it more than anything. Why isn't he here? "

Tuvok, who had entered silently to join our discussion, answered the
Doctor's question.

"I have had him and his "guest" beamed to his quarters. I have
enforced a communications blackout on his room and have locked his
door. He is probably unaware of Tom's actions and certainly is unable
to act on them, even if he is." He said calmly, unperturbed by my
immediate outrage at his words.

"That is a drastic step to have taken, Mr. Tuvok. I don't believe
that it is Starfleet procedure to put a senior officer under house
arrest simply because he has the bad taste to stand someone up at the
alter." I snapped furiously. "You have exceeded your authority with
such an arbitrary decision."

"I made my decision after being forced to restrain Mr. Kim from
killing him." Tuvok replied coolly

"Harry?" I said in disbelief, I couldn't imagine Harry attacking a
senior officer even if his life depended on it.

"It appears that Ensign Kim has taken Tom's suicide bid very
personally. He attacked the Commander in the shuttle bay. My security
officers had to physically restrain him."

"I presume he is in the brig."

"No, he's been escorted to his quarters."

"What? He's attacked a senior officer. I don't care what reason he
thought he had. Why haven't you arrested him?"

"Because in my opinion Mr. Kim was not responsible for his actions.
He was temporarily insane with grief. Furthermore, I suspect that
there are a great many of the crew who would sympathise with his

"I take it that you are included in that number!" I snapped, shocked
but secretly comforted by the fact that my own deep anger at
Chakotay's apparent betrayal of Tom was obviously shared by my
estranged husband.

I wondered whether he blamed me for the situation as much as I blamed

"I cannot condone such acts of violence on my ship, Tuvok"

"Indeed. That is why I have locked Chakotay in his room. For his own
protection. At least until this situation is resolved."

After a long pause, while I thought about all the possible scenarios
that might unfold as the rumor mill spread the news of Tom's act of
desperation, I nodded reluctant approval of Tuvok's actions.

"You're right. Besides, the last thing Tom needs right now is
Chakotay running in here and making more promises that he might later

"I agree, Captain. In my opinion, should Tom survive his suicide
attempt, his only chance of recovering mentally would be if he does
not see Chakotay again. From what I have witnessed, their volatile
relationship has done nothing but harm to him. It is time someone
stepped in and convinced him that enough is enough." Tuvok stated

"I disagree" The Doctor stated firmly, "Chakotay should be forced to
face up to the consequences of his actions. Besides, what harm will
it do Tom to wake up and find out that Chakotay hasn't even come to
see if he's alright?"

"Less harm than if Tom uses Chakotay as an emotional prop to recover
and then finds that support removed yet again. It would be far better
for him to come to terms with the necessity to rebuild his own self-
esteem. He needs to learn to value himself as more than just an
extension of his relationship with Chakotay."
Tuvok intoned gravely

"But he loves Chakotay so much" I murmured, remembering the truth
revealed to me by Tuvok's mindmeld.

"If he loved poison, would you let him drink it?" Tuvok asked

"Poison? I think that your analogy is rather extreme" The Doctor

"Tom's feelings for Chakotay border on the obsessive." Tuvok
explained "It is evidently unhealthy for him to be so dependent on
another person. Tom's feelings for Chakotay are as damaging as if he
was addicted to a lethal narcotic. He has been trapped in a manic-
depressive cycle for months. I admit that I encouraged him in his
pursuit of the Commander because I believed their feelings were
mutual. I was, however, obviously mistaken."

"I tend to agree with you, Tuvok. However, as you know I have
interfered too much in their relationship already." I admitted
guiltily "I will not make the same mistake again. When Tom wakes up,
and he will, he has to, we will ask him what HE wants to do. In the
meantime, keep Chakotay out of the loop for as long as possible."

Tuvok looked at me thoughtfully for a long time, as though reading my
soul. He then raised his hand tentatively, searching my face for
permission. At my nod of acquiescence he touched me lightly on the
forehead and melded with me. I relaxed myself into his touch; all
defenses down, letting him delve deeply into my innermost thoughts.

As though a floodgate opened I felt a warm psychic blanket of
affection and forgiveness wrap around me and I sank gratefully into
his welcoming embrace and began to cry softly with relief that he had
finally forgiven me.


A couple of hours passed and still the rest of the crew ignored our
presence. Nobody came to tell us what was going on. The comm. unit
stayed off-line and the door remained locked. There was no attempt to
even check that Chakotay was all right after the attack.

Which meant they evidently blamed him for whatever Tom had done to

I knew that Chakotay was likely to wake up at any moment. When he
realised he was locked in his quarters he would go crazy. He might
even make the same educated guess as me as to the reason for
his `imprisonment'.

It was imperative that I distracted that line of thought.

I needed to buy a little time. I would make the most of this
opportunity to remind Chakotay why he loved me better than that pale
weakling Tom Paris.

Despite all of Chakotay's natural kindness and the gentleness of his
spirit, sexually he was a different person, often violent and out of
control. I imagined that Tom's frail body required an amount of self-
restraint on Chakotay's part that must ultimately leave him

I needed to re-awaken that ravaging spirit in him, remind him that I
could gladly and willingly take all the passion he had to give.

My physical strength and the natural regenerative abilities of my
body were weapons that Tom could not fight. Quite simply, Tom might
fulfill Chakotay's protective needs even better than I might but he
couldn't possibly compete with me for pure sexual gratification.

So I carefully undressed Chakotay, reveling in the sight of his
strong, muscular body and then I stripped and slipped into bed next
to him, wrapping my legs and arms lovingly around his beautiful
bronze frame.

When he woke he might have a hell of a headache, but I knew him well
enough to know that it wouldn't stop his automatic reaction to waking
next to my naked, inviting body.

As long as I could get him to fuck me before he realised what had
happened to Tom, I would be more than halfway to winning him back.