DRABBLE SERIES: TOM'S RANK REINSTATED
By Ronda Sexton 
 

Janeway's POV: Reinstatement

Look at Tomís expression. He's clueless. I canít wait to see the expression on his face when he realizes whatís happening. Heís opening the box so carefully, as if he is afraid to hope. Then his smile lights up the bridge. So many feelings course through me as I attach the pip to his collar. BíElanna moves towards him and offers her congratulations. The look that passes between them says it all. They are so much in love with each other. Would Starfleet approve of a PDA on the bridge? I doubt it, but in this special case, I do. 
 

Chakotay's POV: Paybacks

Iím enjoying this. Tom, King of the Practical Jokers,set up classically. 

I admit, I suggested this. Seeing him squirm gives me satisfaction. Not that I dislike him, but he loves to tease, and heís getting some payback. 

I was impressed when he tried to intervene on the water planet. In the Maquis, he was only interested in money,but now he has matured into a person who takes a cause for the right reasons. 

He and Kathyrn are both beaming as she reinstates him. 

BíElannaís sultry gaze is all for Tom. They definitely belong together, I have no doubts. 
 
 

Tuvok's POV: Humans?

My role is this joke is at the Captain's request. I fail to understand the pleasure humans derive from playing jokes on one another. 

As she told me of her plans, the Captain's eyes were glowing with such pride, I could not refuse her. Tom Paris has been her reclamation project since we were stranded here in the Delta Quadrant. 

Both of their faces glow as she attaches the pip to his collar and tells him that his behavior has been exemplary this past year. 

I watch B'Elanna congratulate him, and find my thoughts drifting to my absent mate, T'Pel. 
 
 

B'Elanna's POV: It's About Time

Good, there he is . Itíll be hard to keep a straight face as the Captain, Chakotay, and Tuvok set him up. 

This has been a long time in coming. He never should have lost that pip in the first place. I canít wait to see the expression on his face when he realizes it. 

Itís hard to tell who is smiling more as he looks at the shiny new pip, Tom or the Captain. Tom is so happy. I slide my hand up to brush the new pip. With my eyes, I promise him a special celebration later tonight. 
 
 

Tom's POV: Surprise

Twenty-two seconds late? What's wrong with the Captain and Chakotay? Both of them are in a dour mood. From B'Elanna's warning look, I better take my station fast. This may turn out to be a long shift. 

What is that box on my seat? Better open it. I can't believe my eyes. It's a shiny new black pip. Her eyes are glowing with pride as she reinstates me. I did not expect to get my rank back for a very long time. B'Elanna's sultry look as she congratulates me promises a private celebration tonight. Life has never been better. 
 
 

Harry's POV: Me??

Tom is getting his rank back today. I am happy for him, really I am. But still, I have been serving on Voyager for six years now, and I am still just an lowly Ensign. I really want to get a second pip on my collar. 

I watch as the Captain pins the pip to his collar. They are both smiling. They have had a special friendship since we were stranded here. 

B'Elanna offers her warm congratulations to Tom. They are so lucky to have each other. I wonder if I will ever get a second pip or a girlfriend. 
 

THE END