Rights and Reconciliation: A Sense of Completion
By A'Lehsen Paris
Written: July 1999
Summary: The night after "Love Is All We Need". Voyager finds a planet with much needed deposits of dilithium crystals. Tom, B'Elanna, and Harry are sent down to collect them. While on the planet, B'Elanna is injured and transported to Sickbay. There, while Tom is assisting the Doctor, he finds out about B'Elanna's pregnancy. His reaction I'll let you discover for your- self. This story is in B'Elanna's POV, then Tom's, then B'Elanna's yet again.
Disclaimer: Paramount owns Voyager and the crew. I just write the better stories. So don't get me for this, okay? (cowers fearfully in a corner)
Rated: PG (adult language)
B'Elanna glanced at the chronometer. One more hour to go, and then she would be having breakfast with Tom for the first time in weeks. It felt good, to know that they were going to survive what had been their worst fight to date. It would be even better when she told him of the baby.
Since she was in her quarters, B'Elanna felt safe to pat her belly and say to the small life growing inside, "You'll have both parents, sweetheart. I promise." Just then, B'Elanna felt a flutter. Could it be--? Yes, there was another one! The baby was moving!
B'Elanna's eyes stung with unshed tears. She smiled and sat back into the cushions of the couch. It was definitely a wonderful day.
Janeway's voice interrupted her thoughts. "Janeway to Torres."
B'Elanna growled with irritation. Janeway would never call her when she was off-duty unless something had happened. At least it wasn't another battle. She would have felt any hits by now.
"Torres here, Captain," she responded reluctantly. She wasn't actually wearing her combadge, since she preferred not to wear her full unifor while relaxing thse days. It didn't matter, though. It would still pick up her voice.
"B'Elanna, we've located a planet with an unusually high amount of dilithium crystals just beneath the surface. I want you to go down with the away team to find the most viable sites for mining. You will be using the Delta Flyer," Janeway said. It was clearly an order, not a request.
"Aye, Captain," B'Elanna acquiesced.
"Go to the shuttlebay," Janeway told her. "The rest of the team will meet you there."
"Aye, Captain," B'Elanna said again. "I'm on my way," she added as she slipped her uniform jacket back on. "Torres out."
B'Elanna took her time getting to the shuttlebay. Since this was more of a survey mission than anything else, she really didn't have to hurry if she didn't want to.
When she entered the shuttlebay, she almost wasn't surprised to see Tom and Harry waiting for her inside the Delta Flyer. "Are we it?" she asked as she sat down in the copilot's chair. She was much more suited to that than Harry, who would be doing the actual scanning.
"Well, not exactly. The Captain wants us to do the southern hemisphere of the planet, and another team already left to survey the northern hemisphere," Harry said.
Tom guided the shuttle out of the bay and away from Voyager. They had gone about a hundred kilometers when Tom said casually, "B'Elanna, is it true that you've actually begun to like what Neelix cooks?"
B'Elanna refused to blush. "It's not bad. I think I'm getting used to it," she answered.
"The only person I've ever known who enjoyed Neelix's cooking was Kes," Tom said with a grin.
"That's not true," Harry protested. B'Elanna could hear the relief under the amusement in his voice. "Sam Wildman liked it for a while, when she was pregnant with Naomi," he added.
"It's probably just that Humans can't handle the full adventure of Neelix's cooking," B'Elanna said, desperately trying to steer the conversation away from pregnancy. It was not the right time to tell Tom. "Naomi loves it, and she must have given Sam some kind of immunity to it for a while," she said with a grin of her own.
"That might be it," Tom agreed. He paid closer attention to the helm because they were about to enter the planet's atmosphere.
"This is nice, isn't it?" he asked quietly so that Harry wouldn't overhear.
B'Elanna knew that he meant the joking around, the sense of fun that had been missing during their separation. "Yeah," she admitted softly. "It's alot better."
The Flyer didn't give Tom much trouble as he brought it to a glide fifty kilometers over a chain of mountains. "Is this a good height for scanning, Harry?" he asked over his shoulder.
"Sure," Harry replied. "I'm trying to locate the richest deposits now... I've got five. I can't tell if they're near enough to the surface, though," he added with a frown. "It must be something in the soil that's partially blocking the scans. Damn."
B'Elanna got up and stood beside him. "Try adjusting the scanner by .3 percent...now, make the beam tighter...there," she said as she helped him make the necessary adjustments to the equipment. "That should do it," she said.
Harry smiled. "Yep. Three of the five are close enough that we can get to them without any trouble," he said happily. B'Elanna patted his shoulder in encouragement.
She thought of something. "Harry, check to make sure that you aren't picking up echoes. If something is distorting the scans, it might be throwing out echoes, too," she instructed him.
He nodded. "Another sweep, Tom?" he asked.
"Sure thing," Tom said. He turned the *Flyer* around and made another pass of the mountain system.
"Thanks," Harry said absently. He looked at B'Elanna. "One of them was throwing off an echo. It's about fifteen kilometers down, much too deep. Good thinking," he complimented her.
"Thanks, I try," she said as she went to take her seat. A sudden jolt sent her to the ground. Her head hit something sharp, and then the world went black.
* * * * *
Tom swore as a storm came up with no warning. The unexpectedness of it had caught him off guard, and the Flyer was jostled sharply. Behind him, he heard Harry gasp. He turned around.
"B'Elanna!" he shouted. "Harry, take the helm," he ordered. It didn't matter to him that he was the same rank as Harry now. Harry would listen to him.
Tom knelt beside B'Elanna and gently touched the spot at the back of her head where blood was pooling. "Dammit. Harry, get us back to *Voyager* now!" he yelled.
"I am," Harry said. Tom could tell that he was trying to remain calm as he struggled to get the Flyer through the heart of the storm.
Tom gather B'Elanna into his arms, trying to be careful of her injury. "Harry, transport us to Sickbay as soon as we're within range, and then inform the Captain," he said hoarsely. He saw his friend nod.
"I'm guessing you two worked out your problems," Harry commented.
"Yeah, we did," Tom said. He didn't tell Harry that he knew B'Elanna was holding back something. That didn't really matter much to him at that moment.
Dammit, he thought. I wish we had never found that damn planet. If we hadn't, I'd probably know what's wrong with B'Elanna by now. That frustrated him almost as badly as B'Elanna's wound.
"We're within transporter range--now," Harry said.
The Flyer's cabin shimmered around Tom, to be replaced the next instant by Sickbay. The Doctor came rushing over to him.
"What happened?" he asked as Tom laid B'Elanna on the nearest biobed.
"A storm caught me by surprise as we were doing a survey of the planet. B'Elanna had been helping Harry, and was about to take her seat again when it happened. She hit her head pretty badly," Tom said as he began to help the Doctor.
"It's not as bad as it looks," the Doctor said. Tom detected relief in his voice, and was a little curious about it. Not that he wasn't happy that B'Elanna wasn't seriously injured, but he hadn't expected it from the Doctor.
"Doc, is there something you aren't telling me?" Tom asked suspiciously as he watched the Doctor clean the area around the wound and then use the dermal regenerator on it. It closed perfectly.
The Doctor glanced at him and frowned. "Are you and B'Elanna still fighting?" he asked.
"Uh...no," Tom said. He was confused by the change in subjects.
The Doctor sighed. "I suppose that if I don't tell you directly that I won't be breaking my promise, and she can't be angry with me then," he said almost to himself.
"Doc, what the hell are you talking about?" Tom asked. He was starting to get angry. He wanted some answers!
The Doctor handed him a medical tricorder. "Scan her, and tell me what you find," he instructed.
Tom sighed in frustration and did as he was told. The results that showed up on the tricorder...He felt his face go pale and his eyes widen. It was impossible...but a second scan confirmed it. B'Elanna was pregnant! So that's what that meeting had been about a few days before...she wasn't dying after all!
He felt dizzy, and knew he probably looked it when the Doctor reached over to support him. "She's pregnant!" he managed to gasp out.
The Doctor nodded but still didn't say anything. Finally, once Tom was sure he could talk right, he said, "How far along? What is it? How long have you known about this?"
The Doctor shook his head. "I'll let her answer the first two questions when she wakes up. As for the latter, she came to me a few days ago and re- quested a check-up. That was the first time I knew anything about it," he said quietly. He walked into his office.
Tom wasn't sure how to react at first. He thought about being angry with her for not telling him, and then he decided that that would be stupid. They had barely said ten words to each other until the day before, and then she had obviously planned on telling him at breakfast. It wasn't her fault that the discovery of the dilithium crystals had kept that from happening.
The next emotion he could recognize was joy. He was going to be a father! He and B'Elanna would have a family!
He thought for a moment about proposing to her as soon as she woke up, but decided that she'd probably take it the wrong way. No, he knew that she would definitely take it the wrong way. So he'd wait a few weeks, give them both a chance to get comfortable again.
Tom sat down on the opposite biobed to wait. He thought absently that it would be worth the wait, and he didn't just mean B'Elanna's waking up.
* * * * *
B'Elanna felt as if she had been dragged through an ion storm without any protection. Her head ached like hell, and she fancied that she could feel the pulse of the warp core beneath her, and that her head was pulsing in the same rhythm.
She opened one eye slowly, knowing somehow that it would be much too bright for her comfort when she did.
Tom was sitting across from her, his eyes watching her for any sign of conciousness, she knew. She tried to smile a little, but even that hurt.
"Hello," she rasped. Her throat felt dry. "Can I have something to drink?" she asked.
Tom nodded. She watched him walk over to the replicator and order some a cup of water. He brought it back to her. He helped her sit up a little and held the cup while she took a few sips. He gently lowered her back onto what she know realized was a biobed. She was in Sickbay.
"What happened?" B'Elanna asked.
"A storm hit us. You were the only one hurt," Tom told her. He reached down and brushed a strand of her hair out of her eyes. "It wasn't too bad, just a cut on the back of your head. The impact is what knocked you out."
B'Elanna lifted a hand and gingerly felt the back of her head. The cut was gone, but she could still feel the bruise, and she still felt like hell. "Can I have something for the pain?" she asked with a grimace.
Tom frowned. "It still hurts?" he asked. He picked up a tricorder that had being laying beside her. He scanned her head. "No damage to the brain. That's good. I'll ask the Doctor about a painkiller," he said. He gave her a small smile. "You had me scared for a minute in the Flyer, 'Lanna," he told her.
She smiled back. "Trust me, I'll try not to do that again," she said.
"Doc," she heard him say. "B'Elanna's asking for something to dull the pain."
"Actually, I'm asking for something to get rid of the pain completely," B'Elanna corrected as the Doctor came back in.
"I'll see what I can do," he said. A minute or so later, he pressed a hypospray to her neck, and the pain disappeared.
"Thanks," she said with a grateful smile.
After a glance first at her, then at Tom, the Doctor said, "I'll leave you two alone."
B'Elanna looked at Tom. What was going on? "Is something wrong?" she asked him.
Tom shook his head. "I scanned you while you were unconscious," he said. He came over and took her hand. "I'm assuming you were going to tell me about the baby at breakfast." His voice was so calm. She looked into his eyes, almost afraid of what she would find. The happiness glowing in those bright blue depths made her weak with relief.
B'Elanna nodded. "I didn't tell you before because....well...." she took a deep breath. "I realized it the day after our fight. I didn't really want to tell anyone then, so I kept it a secret. I finally came to the Doctor a few days ago, because I wanted to make sure everything was all right," she confessed. The acceptance in his eyes made her want to sing.
"Well?" he asked. When she frowned a little, he elaborated. "What did you find out?"
"In four and a half months, we are going to have a healthy little boy," B'Elanna told him.
Tom surprised her by reaching down and hugging her fiercely. She returned the hug, not sure what to make of it. "Tom?" she asked softly.
He gazed down at her eyes, and she was again surprised by the vulnerable look in the blue depths. "I heard parts of your conversation with the Doc the other day," he admitted. "Not enough to make any sense, but enough to worry me. I came to the mistaken conclusion that you might be dying--that was from the 'you have four and a half months left' part--and I realized how much you meant to me. I never want to loose you, B'Elanna," he said.
She reached up and pulled his lips down to hers. "You won't," she whispered as their mouths met in a kiss full of hope and promises.
Well, now that it's over, what do you think? I have to warn you, I'm thinking of another story based in this "universe", maybe two, but not for a while.