Kathryn's Voyage


B L Miller

Captain Kathryn Janeway was two hours into sleep when the alarms went off. Startled by the noise, Janeway jumped up and twirled around, searching for the source. She reached for the com panel on the wall, stumbling in her half-wakened state.

"Janeway to Bridge! What's going on?" She tried to sound authoritative, but having just been bolted out of a sound sleep, she ended up sounding grouchy.

"Captain, we've come upon an electrical storm." The clear voice of Lt. Tom Paris filled the room. "Torres thinks it may contain anti-matter....she found a trace signature while scanning the outer edge of the cluster." Janeway dressed quickly as Tom talked. He went on with figures and scan reports and all the reasons why she needed to be woken up at 0200. She grabbed her jacket off the chair as she dashed out to the turbolift.

As the turbolift door opened to the bridge, Kate looked around to see who was on duty. Harry Kim was at his observation station, and Tom was at Navigation Control. Both Chakotay and Tuvok were off duty. Janeway was surprised to see Torres. She hardly ever left engineering.

"Captain, we have picked up a signature trail of anti-matter. It appears to match our level of Dilithium exactly." Harry spoke while staring at his instrument panel. He stared at one display, then looked up quickly at the Captain. "Captain....this is a Federation signature."

Janeway ran over to Harry's station. She looked at the readings for a moment, then looked at Torres. "B'Elanna, what do you make of this?"

"Captain, if this is a Federation signature, we might find a way home." The half-klingon said.

"Is it a ship?" Kate was looking at the viewscreen, not seeing anything but cracks of light dancing before her.

"We can't tell." Tom was aiming Voyager away from the rumbling storm. He reversed engines until the craft was out of danger.

"All right. What do we know so far?" Kate was wide awake now, her mind racing with possibilities. Could it a another ship? One that knows the way home? Her heart skipped a beat at the thought of home. It had been over a year since she had seen home.

Harry spoke up first. "We have a faint signature that extends into the storm. The electrical impulses are making it impossible to get any accurate readings. We haven't been able to make any contact or even scan to see if anything is in there."

"Captain," B'Elanna turned away from the screen to face the redhead. "Request permission to take a shuttlecraft into the storm and investigate."

"Absolutely not!" Captain Janeway strode over to her seat and sat down, her gaze fixed upon the young Lt. Torres. "I will not risk you to an electrical storm in a shuttlecraft...For what? We don't even know if there's anything in that storm at all!" The Klingon's eyes grew tighter, returning the stare.

"Captain, it could be another Federation vessel. It could be damaged. We could be their only hope." Torres knew what she was saying. The Captain held herself to a high standard. She wouldn't risk allowing Federation members to die. Finally, Kate broke the stare. "One shuttlecraft." Torres briskly headed for the door. Janeway stood up and turned to face the young woman. "B'Elanna, take Paris along with you. You'll need all the help you can get in that storm." The Klingon nodded, then entered the turbolift.

It was 3 hours before B'Elanna finally made a report.

"Captain, incoming message from Torres"

"On screen." Kathryn looked as the half-klingon face of B'Elanna Torres filled the screen. She could see Tom working the controls.

"Report, Lieutenent."

"Captain, it's not a ship at all. It's a stasis tube." Kate took a moment to let the words sink in. A stasis tube? Out here? Why? Stasis tubes weren't jettisoned. Stasis tubes were used to store the bodies of deceased crew members until they could be transported home for burial or to a medical station for an autopsy. Stasis tubes maintained the flow of oxygen and blood to the body, keeping it in the same state as when it died. Sometimes cures could be found and the bodies could be brought back to life.

"Lt., can you repeat yourself?" Janeway stood up and walked closer to the viewscreen, as if being closer could make the words change.

"It's a stasis tube, solar powered, with a dilithium backup." After a pause, Torres continued. "It is from the Enterprise D......Captain, there's a body inside." Janeway's eyes grew wide. A body? Whose? Why would the Enterprise jettison one of their own in a stasis tube? She had a million questions with no answer. Kathryn snapped into action.

"Lt. Torres, retrieve the stasis tube and return immediately. Harry, get me all the records from Enterprise D involving stasis tubes and send them to my ready room." Harry barely heard the last word as the door to the ready room shut behind the auburn-haired captain.

"Tea, hot" Kate barked at the computer as she reached for her seat. "Computer, display all logs from the USS Enterprise D involving stasis tubes. Her screen filled with lines of text. She quickly surveyed the information. 14 tubes were mentioned in the records. 12 were used for the transport of dead crew members, one was used to transport the body of a dead vulcan ambassador, and the last one was reported destroyed. Kate stopped drinking her tea when she saw the last entry. "Computer,...display log number 14, full details." The computer responded, and again the screen filled with information. Stasis Tube 14 was reported destroyed on stardate 41602.1. The report was brief. It was filed by Dr. Beverly Crusher. Supporting witness was Counselor Deanna Troi. The report was signed off by the Captain Jean-Luc Picard. Very routine, very neat, very......

"False!" Kathryn said. Suddenly she knew what had really happened to tube 14.

"Computer..display all records of death on Enterprise D from stardate 41600 to 41604." Her eyes stared intently at the screen. There was only one death recorded.

Kate left the ready room and entered the Bridge. She never paused as she headed for the turbolift. "Ensign Kim, inform Transporter Room 3 to beam that tube directly to sickbay as soon as the shuttlecraft is within range." The doors to the turbolift closed.

"Aye eye, Captain." Harry said quietly as he looked down at his monitor. He knew that look of determination on her face. He'd seen it before. A mystery had started and she wouldn't let it go until the truth was discovered.

Two hours later, the sickbay looked like a conference room. It was packed with officers, all staring down at the lifeless body in the tube.

"The body is in perfect stasis." The monotone voice of the Doctor said. "All support functions are working. It body seems to have suffered some physical trauma, but nothing that would cause death." He waved the medical tricorder over the body as he spoke. "The brain seems to have suffered the most damage. The electrical stimulus nerves are severed." The room was quiet. All the officers were looking at their shoes or the floor. The Doctor rolled his eyes in exasperation. "The electrical stimulus nerves provide the brain with the electrical energy it requires." He said in a tone usually reserved for children. "Without those nerves, the body can't generate electrical impulses, and the brain cannot function." He rolled his eyes again when the officers all looked up and nodded their heads in understanding. Kate walked over to where the holographic image of the Doctor was.

"So you're saying that if we could somehow get electrical impulses to the brain...." She looked down at the face of the young woman in the tube. "We could bring her back to life?" There was no mistaking the sound of hope that filled the Captain's voice.

"If you could find such a way." The Doctor said in a sarcastic tone. "Of course, no one has been able to find a way yet."

"That's the key word, Doctor. Yet." The wheels in Kate's mind were spinning. "Lt. Torres, I'll need you and..." She paused, looking around. Chakotay? No. Paris? No. She needed a scientist. It hit her. "...and me. I'll help us find a way." She looked down at the blond haired form, lying in eternal sleep, and strode out of the room.

Kate stared at the ceiling. She should have been asleep hours ago, but she couldn't stop the questions from forming in her mind. Why did they jettison her? She knew her name now. Lt. Natasha Yar. Chief Security Officer of the Enterprise. She was reported killed on stardate 41601.3 on Vagra II by a creature known as Armus. She died trying to save her Betazoid friend. But if she was killed in duty, why did they jettison her in a stasis tube? Why not bring her body back to her family? Why didn't they follow Starfleet Regulations about the disposing of bodies?

Kate left the bed and headed for the table. "Computer...lights, reading intensity." Instantly the room filled with a soft, artificial light. "Computer...display all records regarding the battle with Armus on Vagra II." She didn't find what she was looking for there. "Computer...display all records regarding Lt. Natasha Yar." Not there either. She stood up and walked away from the viewscreen. She placed her hands on her hips and looked at the ceiling. It's not there. It has to be there somewhere. She thought about the report of the destroyed tube. "Computer!" She raced back over to the table. "Display names of persons mentioned in Stasis Tube Destruction Report stardate 41602.1" She looked down the list of names. The doctor reported the tube destroyed. Why was a doctor reporting a destroyed tube? "Computer...display personal log for Crusher, Beverly, Dr. Stardates 41601.2 to 41602.2."

"Personal logs are not available for general display." The computer chirped.

"Override...authorization Janeway seven five alpha." The computer acknowledged the authorization and displayed the information requested.

"There it is." Janeway said softly. A smile crept over her lips. The mystery of the tube was solved.

"From the information I've gathered, this was no accident." Janeway spoke as she paced around the ready room. Chakotay, Paris, Kim, Neelix, Tuvok, and Torres were all in attendance. "From the doctor's personal logs, it seems that both her and the ship's counselor couldn't bear the thought of disposing of her body according to regulations. She had no known family, and the procedure is to place the body on the transporter pad, set the beam for wide dispersal, and transport the body into space. The doctor's notes suggest that she thought her friend deserved better than that. There are also references in the log that suggest that the doctor couldn't accept not being able to save her friend. She convinced three officers to go along with her story about the tube, and secretly jettisoned her. Apparently she hoped that someday they would find a way to save her friend."

"But Captain, what about the strange way she was dressed?" Paris asked. "They put her dress jacket on, but left her in the clothes she died in." In his mind he saw the vision when the Doctor removed the woman's dress jacket. Her was in her regulation gold/black jumpsuit. A large stain of dried blood covered the front of the tattered and torn uniform shirt.

"She was a warrior. They put the dress jacket on to honor her rank, but left the uniform on to honor her memory." She remembered the line in Dr. Crusher's personal log. "I'm the doctor. I dealt with dead bodies before, but I can't bear to touch Tasha. If I put the mourning clothes on her, then I'm admitting I failed her."

"So who put the dress jacket on her?" Chakotay said.

"I don't know yet. But I will find out. Torres, how are you doing on the electrical impulse relay?" Kate looked at the Chief Engineer.

"I'm still working on it. I can't make it small enough for any practical purpose and I still can't control the strength and frequency of the impulses."

"I'll help you. In the meantime...Lt. Paris? Is there any reason to hang around this electrical storm anymore?"

"No Ma'am." Tom sat straight up.

"Good. Then let's get underway. We all have work to do." Janeway walked toward the door. "If anyone needs me, I'll be in the science laboratory." The door opened with a swoosh, Janeway walked through, then closed again.

ZZZZZTTT!! The smell of burning wire was everywhere. "Damn!!" Captain Janeway shouted as yet another test failed. She'd been at it for almost six weeks, and still was no closer to an answer. Frustration got the better of her then. She grabbed the still-burning prototype and threw it at the wall. It hit with a smash. Pieces flew everywhere.

"Tuvok to Captain Janeway...is everything all right? We have a security alarm in Laboratory 5." The voice came from her com badge.

"Everything is fine, Tuvok." Janeway looked at the damage she'd done. The prototype was beyond repair, and a chunk was missing from the wall. "I..I knocked something off the table and it must have hit the wall."

"Thank you Captain. Sorry to have bothered you." Tuvok wasn't sure if he believed the captain's story.

"Thank you Mr. Tuvok." was Janeway's reply. She looked at the mess and sighed. She had too many questions and not enough answers. She decided to get some answers. Kate left the lab and went to the turbolift.

When she got inside the turbolift, she planned on going to her quarters. Instead she found herself saying "Sickbay." The door slip open on deck 7. She left the lift and went to the medical wing. She entered patient room 2. Now removed from the stasis chamber and placed on the ship's medical system, Janeway was able to get a better view of the young woman. A thin girl, with a boyish figure. Blond and muscular, with short blond hair, she looked like an amazon. Kathryn saw the wound on the left side of her head. Janeway knew the wounds would not heal until brainwave activity returned. She leaned forward and stroked the blond hair. "Tasha" she said softly. The girl did not stir. "I won't stop...I promise. I'll keep working until I find a way to bring you back." Feeling the weariness of too many days and nights in the lab, Janeway stood up and stretched. "I guess it's time I got some sleep. I'll see you tomorrow." As Kate was closing the door she whispered "good night, Tasha." Kathryn slept with only one thought on her mind. Who put the dress jacket on Tasha? If doctor couldn't do it, then who did?

The next morning Kathryn was sitting at her table, looking over her notes. She had already violated Starfleet regulations by looking into Dr. Crusher's personal log. She couldn't look at everyone's personal log just because she wanted to. She figured she could look at only one more personal log before she would be in extreme violation. No, she had to pick the right one. The one who put the jacket on. She looked at her notes again. Commander Data, the android. He doesn't have emotions. He could have been able to do it. But would he deliberately violate regulations by putting her into the stasis tube? Lt. LaForge, the engineering chief. No, it had to be one of the officers in the stasis tube report. Counselor Troi. What was the ship's counselor doing near a stasis tube? "Computer...display personal logs for Troi, Deanna, Counselor...stardates 41601.2 to 41602.2...security override authorization Janeway seven five alpha." Janeway looked at the log intently. The answer was there somewhere.

"Personal log, Counselor Deanna Troi. Stardate 41601.5. Beverly has released me from sickbay. My physical injuries are healing but I fear my emotional one will not. I cannot stop myself from crying. I never got to say good-bye. My dearest Tasha lost her life trying to save me, and I never got to say good-bye. My shuttlecraft left before she could get to the platform. I should have waited for her. I thought she would be there when I got back. I thought she would always be there."

Kathryn called up the next entry, stardate 41602.1. The day the tube was reported destroyed.

"I have gone and said my good-byes to Tasha. I brought her dress jacket. She always looked so proper in it. Bev was reluctant, but eventually she opened the tube to let me put the jacket on Tasha. Words can't describe how I felt, looking at her. I thought I could handle seeing her again. When I looked down and saw her all broken up, my heart couldn't take it. I cried hysterically, like I'd never cried before. The emotion was overwhelming. Data stepped up and asked me if he could put the jacket on her. He said it was the proper thing to do. I went to give it to him, then stopped. I owed it to Tasha to do this. Putting that jacket on her was the hardest thing I had ever done. Bev had to give a sedative when we jettisoned the stasis tube holding my love."

Janeway read the passage over again. All the pieces fit into place then. She felt even more of a determination to find an answer. With renewed hope, she went to Laboratory 5.

Each day that passed only brought disappointment. Janeway spent all of her time in Lab 5. She hadn't seen the bridge in days. Torres joined her as often as she could, but engineering still had most of her attention. She had gotten the machine to work, but it was still too big to be of any use. It seemed each time Janeway moved ahead, something else became more out of reach. When the work became too frustrating, she would go down to patient room 2 and visit with Tasha. She talked to her about the machine, the progress they made, how close they were to a breakthrough. Each time, Janeway would feel renewed hope.

"Damn!" Another prototype failed. Torres and Janeway looked at each other. It had been 3 months and still no closer to an answer.

"Well, we have to try something else, this just isn't working." The auburn haired captain paced around the room.

"If we only knew more about how the electrical impulses are relayed. This is still a very new field. We just don't have enough data to-" Torres was cut off.

"Data! That's it!" Janeway yelped as she stood up and dashed across the room. "Computer...display schematic for Commander Data." The viewscreen on the com panel light up with the wiring diagram. "Computer...display electrical impulse relays." The image on the screen focused on the right temple. "Magnify." She turned to look at Torres. "B'Elanna, if we use the same positronic relays that Data uses, wouldn't that work?"

Kathryn watched with great satisfaction as the Doctor and Lt. Torres finished installing the positronic relay. It only took one week after they decided to copy the structure of Data. She was too nervous to assist. She watched every minute, afraid to take her eyes off...afraid of something going wrong. It was a long operation. Every muscle in Janeway's back screamed in protest, but she couldn't leave. As soon as the skin was fused shut, Kathryn headed for the nearest chair.

"It will be several hours before we know if this will work." The monotone voice of the Doctor said. "Even if it does work, there's no telling how well her brain will function. She's been in stasis for over 9 years."

"Doctor, we can only wait." Kathryn looked at Tasha. She seemed to have a little more color to her face. "I'll stay with her."

"Captain!" Torres protested. "You're exhausted. You need to sleep." Janeway thought about her bed. It had been so long since she slept. She couldn't stifle the yawn.

"Fine, I'll rest. Doctor, notify me if there is any change." The Doctor nodded, and Janeway left sickbay. She was asleep before her head hit the pillow.

Janeway was just waking up when the com panel told her to come to sickbay. She found the Doctor standing next to the table holding the young woman. He was running the medical tricorder around the body. "You called me?"

"Yes Captain...you'll want to see this." He motioned for her to follow him as they went to the monitor. "These were the electrical impulses one hour after surgery," he pointed to a row of slightly wavy lines on the screen. "and these are the impulses now." He pointed to a series of frantically waving lines. "It seems that you're relays are working splendidly. Nice job." Kathryn breathed a sigh of relief. She walked back over to Tasha's side. "Doctor, are this rate, how long before we know that this is a total sucess?"

"Well, if she continues to regain synaptic activity, we should know in a matter of days just how much degeneration of brain cells has occurred. She could make a full recovery, or she could end up much like she is now." The Doctor's tone never changed.

"Doctor, I'm going to stay with her. I'll monitor the relay circuits and watch for any brain wave activity."

"As you wish, Captain."

Three days went by as Kathryn stayed by Tasha's side. Each day, the brain wave activity increased and progress was made. Her brain had recovered enough to maintain life functions, and she was taken off life support. Janeway watched as her wounds slowly started to heal. Each day, she stayed by the young woman's side, and read more about the life of Lt. Natasha Yar.

Kathryn had almost nodded off when she heard a sound. She stood up and went to the girl's side. Kes came out from the main sickbay.

"Kes, I heard something." Kathryn said. Kes was already using the medical tricorder, going up and down Tasha's body.

"The sensors indicate a sharp increase in wave activity. It looks almost normal." Kathryn couldn't believe what she just heard from the Ocampa. She stared at the monitors. They showed low level normal wave patterns. With a loud whoop Kathryn picked Kes up in her arms and spun her around. "Janeway to Doctor." Instantly the Medical Holographic Image appeared.

"You summoned me, Captain?"

"Yes, look at the wave activity!" Kathryn was beaming with excitement. The Doctor studied the readings for a few moments.

"I see, there seems to have been significant improvement in the bio-neural functions." He took the tricorder from Kes and ran new tests on Tasha. "Her breathing is stronger, blood pressure is up, heart rate improving..." He went on with the technical information. Kathryn tuned everything out except the wave monitor. She was improving! She turned toward the blond. Kathryn pulled her chair up against the bed and sat down. She took one of Tasha's hands in hers and held it, hoping for a response. She gave gentle squeezes every few minutes.

Four hours had passed since the wave activity read normal. Kathryn kept squeezing Tasha's hand. Janeway thought she felt something. Was that a squeeze?

"Tasha?" She squeezed. Nothing.

"Tasha? Come on, let me know you're here." Squeezed again. Nothing. Janeway decided that it must be her imagination. Then she felt it again. Stronger this time. Definitely a squeeze.

"Tasha?" Kathryn's voice became more urgent. She wanted to get past those cobwebs in Tasha's mind and bring her to the present. A low moan escaped the long-silent lips of the young woman. Kathryn watched as Tasha's head moved slowly from side to side, and her eyelids slowly opened. The bright lights of sickbay were too much for eyes closed so long. Tasha let out a whimper of pain. She tried to bring her arm up to protect her eyes, but she was still so weak.

"Computer, dim lights, eighty percent." Kathryn reached out with her hands to cover Tasha's eyes. "Shhh. You're all right now Tasha. Take it slow and easy." Slowly the eyes opened again. Tasha tried to focus on the room. Everything was so foggy and blurry. She tried to pick her head up, but a stinging pain forced her to lay it back down.

"Easy...easy does it now....lie still.." Janeway kept talking in low, soothing tones until the blond relaxed. "That's it." Janeway smiled when Tasha's eyes finally focused on her. "Welcome back Lt. Yar. You've been gone a long time."

The blond woman tried to focus on the soft voice. "Where.." Her voice was weak, ragged.

"My name is Kathryn. You are on the Starship Voyager."

"Voy.." Tasha's mind was still fuzzy. She couldn't remember a ship called Voyager.

"Shhh. Relax for now, there's plenty of time for explanations later." Kathryn's voice was low and soothing. Tasha fell back to sleep.

For the next week, Kathryn stayed at Tasha's side. Kes would come over and check the vital signs, but left all other care to Kathryn. Tasha was still very weak, but getting a little stronger each day. Slowly, her wounds started to heal. Tasha's thoughts started to focus, and she realized that she was not on the Enterprise. With effort, she picked her head up and spoke.


"I know who you are, Lt. Yar. My name is Kathryn. You were critically injured and have taken quite a long time to recover." Kathryn's fingers brushed the blond's hair off her forhead. "You need to rest and take it easy for a while. The extent of your injuries was quite severe."

"Wha..what happened?" Tasha's thoughts were getting clearer.Tasha looked around the sickbay. Nothing was familier. "Where am I?"

"You are on the starship Voyager. It's a science vessel."

A look of fear came over Tasha. Where was the Enterprise? What happened? She tried to remember, but she couldn't. "Where is the Enterprise?"

Kathryn inhaled deeply. "The USS Enterprise is approximently seventy thousand light years away." She felt badly for the young woman. "We are in the Delta Quadrant."

"Delta? I don't understand." Tasha's fear turned to suspicion. "Who are you? I think you'd better explain everything. The kidnapping of a Starfleet Officer is looked upon very unfavorably by the Federation."

Kathryn laughed lightly. "Believe me, Lieutenant, no one has kidnapped you. We are in the Delta Quadrant. We were caught in a spacial wave and thrown here. We're trying to get back."

"How did I end up here? I remember being on the Enterprise, but it's all so fuzzy." Tasha laid her head back down as brilliant flashes of light danced in front of her eyes and pain pierced through her head. "Oh.."

"Easy." Kathryn checked the monitors. "The surgery was quite extensive. You are bound to suffer from headaches, blackouts, and dizziness." She gave Tasha a hypospray of a mild pain reliever and waited until the young woman's pain eased. "Now what I'm about to tell you will shock you, but I swear as a Starfleet officer it is the truth." Tasha nodded in acknowledgement. "You were killed on Vagra II in the year 2364 on stardate 41601.3. Your body was placed in a stasis tube and jettisoned on 41602.1. The tube must have been captured in the electrical storm and brought out here. We picked up the signature trail and found you. You had suffered severe internal injuries, but more importantly, the electrical impulse relays in your brain were severed. It took us months to find a way to replace the relays." She looked at Tasha. Did the young woman believe her?

"In the year 2364? Well, what it is now?" Tasha asked.

"It's 2374. You've been dead for over nine years." Kathryn looked downward, giving Tasha a moment to process the infomation.

"Nine years?" That was impossible. "Kathryn, what happened?"

"You died on Vagra II on star-"

"I heard that. I need to know how. Please, you have to tell me." Kathryn could feel the need arising in Tasha's voice. Kathryn sighed. She hated to discuss death.

"On stardate 41601.2 an emergency call came from a shuttlecraft carrying two members of the Enterprise." Kathryn omitted the names of the crewmembers. "The craft crashed on Vagra II and was attached by a creature known as Armus. When you attempted to intervene and rescue your comrads, Armus attacked and struck you with a massive electrical shock. The ship's doctor was unable to revive you."

Tasha thought about the words that were just said. She tried, but she couldn't remember. Was all this true? Nine years. She had lost nine years.

"Kathryn, I would like to see the report."

"I'll see that you do, later. Right now you need your rest." Kathryn said. Tasha sighed but was rather tired. She closed her eyes and fell back to sleep.

"So Kathryn, what do you do on this ship? Your're not part of the medical crew, your uniform color is wrong." The blond looked at the captain over the breakfast tray. Kathryn thought about how to answer. She didn't want to tell the young woman that she was the captain, not yet.

"I'm a scientist. Lt. Torres and I worked on your neuro relay system."

"I can't imagine how the captain can do without you for so long. You're always at my side."

Kathryn laughed to herself. "I don't think I have to worry about the captain. I can do pretty much what I want. And what I want right now is to take you over to physical therapy. The Doctor says it's time you started to walk. Kes and I will help you." Kes had come over to where the two women were. Janeway and Kes helped Tasha sit up and swing her legs over the side of the bed. Janeway came over from her side to help Kes support Tasha.

"Arggh!" Tasha fell, unable to maintain the weight of her own body on her atrophied legs. Kathryn picked her up and helped her back into bed. Tears formed in Tasha's eyes.

"Tasha." There was a determined edge to the captain's voice. "You can't give up. You can do this. It just takes time." The tears started to roll down Yar's cheeks. "I'll help you." Janeway leaned in close to Tasha. She captured the young woman's chin in her hand and forced Tasha to look at her. In a low voice, she said "I won't give up on you, Tasha. And I won't let you give up on yourself." It took several tries before they could get Tasha standing up. Kathryn could see the anger in Tasha's eyes.

It was slow going. Her legs took the longest to recover. Tasha had a temper that was not written in any logs that Kathryn found. Every time Tasha stumbled, or fell, her temper flared.

"Dammit! I'll never get this." Tasha said as she slowly struggled to her feet.

"You'll get it. Just take your time." Kathryn watched as she tried, failed, then tried and failed again. They spent hours in the therapy room. Sometimes Kes would come and help, but mostly it was Kathryn. And Kathryn wouldn't give up. She put up with Tasha's rages, her cries of frustration. One time she had left Tasha in the room alone. Tasha became so fustrated and angry that she proceeded to completely destroy the physical therapy room. By the time Kathryn and Mr. Tuvok arrived,three members of the security team had Tasha down on the floor. Janeway looked around the room. Equipment was everywhere. The wall mirrors had all been smashed. Tasha had taken a twenty pound freeweight and heaved it into a therapy machine. Kathryn rubbed her temples as she thought about the damage. It would take a week to repair all the broken equipment. She should have been furious with Tasha, but she wasn't. She realized how fustrated Tasha must be. Sighing, Janeway looked at Mr. Tuvok.

"Well, Mr. Tuvok, I believe your men can release her now. I think the damage is already done." She watched as the men in the gold uniforms released Tasha from thier restraint and helped her to her feet. She gave them a glare the Kathryn's grandmother would have called "the Evil Eye." She looked at Tasha. "I assume you are all through with physical therapy today?" There was no mistaking Kathryn's sarcasm.

"I'm sorry, I guess my anger gets the best of me sometimes." Tasha felt drained at the display of anger.

"I think it's time we put you back into bed." Janeway led her back to sickbay. From then on, she never left Tasha alone in the therapy room. Kathryn knew that if she stayed, Tasha would keep trying. And Tasha kept trying. Slowly, the legs found the strength to walk. Then run. Then jump and move about. Every accomplishment was a victory both to Tasha and Kathryn.

Tasha was fully recovered now, and regularly took training exercise with the male security members. They saw less of each other now, but Kathryn still made it a point to come and have dinner with Tasha each night. Tasha had been moved from the sickbay to a guest room on the same deck as Kathryn. She had grown fond of the blue-eyed woman, and looked forward to the time they spent together.

Tasha looked at the com panel on the wall of her quarters. She wondered where Kathryn was now.

"Computer, locate Scientist Janeway"

"Captain Janeway in on the Bridge." Came the reply. A look of shock passed over Tasha's face. Captain?

"Computer, repeat last transmission."

"Captain Janeway is on the Bridge." Tasha paced around her room. Kathryn was the captain? Why didn't she tell her? What else hadn't she been told?

"Computer, display personnel records for Kathryn Janeway."

"You are not authorized to access personnel records." Came the reply.

"Security authorization Yar two five seven"

"Authorization denied. Yar is not among the crew members of this vessel." Tasha sat down on the couch. She was not among the crew members. Of course not. She was supposed to be dead. Everything she had was gone. Her name, her rank, her life was all gone.

When Kathryn arrived at 1800 for dinner, she noticed the quiet expression on Tasha's face. Usually, the blond woman was happy to see her.

"Tasha, is something wrong?" The look that Janeway got showed loss and betrayal.

"Nothing is wrong...Captain." She said the last word in a hiss.

Kathryn inhaled deeply, feeling the hurt and venom coming from the woman across the table. Knowing there was no way to explain her deciet, she said quietly "I'm sorry I didn't tell you."

"Why did you keep that a secret from me? I trusted you." Tasha's blue eyes glared at the captain. "What else are you keeping secret?" It was more of an accusation than a question.

"Tasha, I withheld that information from you because I wanted you to think of me as a person, not a rank. You must believe me, all I wanted was for you to get better." There was a pleading tone to Kathryn's voice. Tasha's features changed, showing understanding. But there was something more. Janeway could see that there was still something bothering the young woman.

"Tasha, what is really going on?" Her words were soft, gentle. Tasha stood up from the table and started to pace around the room. She was dressed in a plain grey jumpsuit, reserved for guests and non-Starfleet personnel.

"I don't exist." She finally said, her words low. "The computer doesn't accept me as being alive." Kathryn could hear the despair. The auburn-haired woman stood up and walked over to the com panel.

"Computer...this is Captain Janeway." Tasha watched as she gave the commands to update the personnel log. Within minutes, Lt. Natasha Yar was listed as living and assigned to the Federation Starship Voyager as Assistant Security Chief. Kathryn turned away from the com panel and sat at the table.

"Well, that's taken care of. Will you now sit down and eat?" They ate the rest of thier dinner in silence. Normally, they would sit after dinner and talk. Tonight, however, Tasha announced that she was tired and in need of rest. Kathryn left and went back to her quarters, lost in thought. She couldn't figure out what had Tasha so upset. This woman was still a mystery to Kathryn. The blue-eyed woman with the short temper was still on Janeway's thoughts as she went to sleep.

It was only when she was dressing in her red uniform the next morning that she realized what had Tasha so upset. She quickly finished dressing and headed to Tasha's quarters.

Beep. The tone indicated that someone wanted her. Tasha quickly put a robe on.

"Enter." Kathryn walked in, holding a gold and black jumpsuit and a com badge.

"Good morning." Janeway said cheerfully. "I do believe it's time you earn your keep on this ship." She handed Tasha the clothes and badge. "You are assigned to training duty."

"I don't understand." Tasha replied as she headed for the bathroom. From her angle, Kathryn could see the young woman getting dressed. She was lost in thought for a moment before she realized and diverted her attention to the com panel.

"I felt that perhaps you were growing tired of spending your days in these quarters. You are a member of my security force now, and I am in need of someone to train the troops."

Tasha emerged from the bathroom. The uniform Kathryn picked from the supply room fit her perfectly. Tasha looked in the mirror and smiled. She felt a sense of belonging. A feeling that she had not felt in a very long time. She turned to face her new Captain.

"Kathryn...I want to apologize for last night. I had no right-"

"Lt., there is nothing to apologize for. If anything, I should be making the apologies. I kept trying to protect you. I was afraid of pushing you too soon. To be honest, we could use someone of your expierience and ability. I'm sure Mr. Tuvok would appreciate you whipping our security force into shape." Kathryn could see the young woman's mind was already thinking about training excersises. She had read in the personnel report that Yar was an excellant taskmaster. She knew this would be a good choice of assignment for Tasha.

"I will do my best, Captain." Tasha was excited about getting out of her quarters and getting back to security.

"Tasha, please..." Janeway looked at her. "We're not in public, call me Kathryn."

"Ok, Kathryn." Tasha smiled and headed for the door. "Well, I guess I had better get started on my new assignment. I'll see you for dinner, Kathryn?"

"I wouldn't miss it." was the reply.

Tasha talked excitedly at dinner about the training excersise. Kathryn listened intently, focused on the younger woman's activities. She was surprised when the subject changed.

"Kathryn, why don't we go to the holodeck tomorrow? We could take a trip to the beach of Gammis Four. They have three suns that all set at the same time. It's a most beautiful horizon."

"I don't know if I can-"

"Of course you can. You're the captain. We'll make a day of it." A twinkle appeared in those blue eyes and Kathryn knew she wouldn't win this one.

"If you insist."

A smile broke over Tasha's face. "It's a date then. I'll meet you at holodeck 3at 0900."

"Fine. Now if you will excuse me, I have work to attend to." Janeway headed for the door. "I'll see you tomorrow." Tasha walked over to the door where Kathryn was. She hugged the older woman, placing a soft kiss on her cheek. "Thank you Kathryn." They stood face to face. Tasha's arms were around Janeway's neck. "Thank you for giving me back my life." The blond woman's lips gently brushed against Janeway's. "Until tomorrow." Tasha released the embrace she had on Kathryn.

Kathryn's night was filled with dreams of the blue-eyed blonde. She replayed the embrace. She wondered what it would be like to be held in those soft, yet strong arms. Her thoughts became less friendly, more erotic as she blissfully went off to sleep.

"Commander Chakotay, I will be in Holodeck 3 if I'm needed." Kathryn spoke into the com panel.

"Acknowledged Captain. I will notify you if the need arises."

"Janeway out." She walked away from the com panel and set about to decide what to wear. After last night, she didn't want to be too provocative, yet she didn't want to appear prudish. She had been with women before, but there was something different about this one. There was a hint of dangerousness about the young lieutenent that Kathryn found intriguing. She finally settled on a red one-piece bathing suit and a matching wrap. She liked the way it supported her breasts and outlined her hips. As she left her room and headed toward the holodeck, she wondered what outfit Tasha would be wearing.

Tasha was also dressed in a one piece suit.The gold suit was cut open in the front in the shape of a diamond. The top point started just below the center of her breasts, and the bottom point stopped underneath the navel. The diamond was accented with a black trim border. Kathryn admired the way the opening exposed Tasha's washboard stomach.

"Do you like?" Tasha said as she twirled around slowly. There was a teasing, playful look in her eyes. She wanted Kathryn to like it. She wanted Kathryn to like her. Last night she wanted to go further, she wanted to take Janeway into her bed. But she could tell that Kathryn wasn't ready.

"I think it's very nice, Tasha. I'm pleased to see you so cheerful." She thought back to many mornings when Tasha was anything but that. Mornings when Tasha's legs ached so bad she couldn't stand. Mornings where Tasha's dark mood appeared. Mornings when fustration made breakfast fly across sickbay. "I hope this is a sign that you're settling in and getting used to life on Voyager."

"Everyday gets a little easier." Tasha walked alongside with her head bent downward slightly. She seemed to be lost in thought. "I guess I still miss my friends on the Enterprise."

"I know that same feeling." Kathryn spoke quietly, thinking of her family back home.

"Oh! Kathryn, I'm sorry. I wasn't thinking. Of course you feel the same way I do." Tasha immediately realized what she had said. "I guess sometimes I only think of myself."

"Enough of that." Kathryn hoped to change the mood. "We're on our way to relax on a beach and watch a triple sunset. The least we can do is have fun." She was rewarded with a small smile. "All right then, let's go."

The beach was far better than Tasha described it. Warm sand slithered between thier toes as they walked barefoot along the beach. Blue water gently lapped at the beach. The three suns were sinking into the horizon, casting a golden glow upon the sky. It was several months before Tasha arrived that Kathryn had last been on the holodeck. The women spent the day relaxing. They alternated between the water and the beach. They would swim for a while, then go lay on thier beach towels. Once rested, they'd head back into the water, and start again. Time was forgotten, the ship didn't exist.

They were laying on thier towels. Kathryn was laying on her back with her eyes closed, enjoying the heat from the suns. Tasha was laying on her left side, propped up on an elbow, looking at her. They were inches apart.

"Kathryn, " She spoke in a low tone. "I want to thank you." Kathryn opened her eyes slowly. She was aware of how close thier bodies were, very aware.

"Thank me for what?"

"For giving me back my life."

"Tasha.." Janeway propped herself up on both elbows so that she was eye level with Tasha. However, this action also brought thier faces much closer than she wanted. "We talked about this last night. You don't need to thank me."

"Kathryn..." Tasha's lips were inches away. "I don't want to just thank you. I want to show you." Her voice was husky. "I want you." Tasha kissed her. Slow gentle kisses that made Kathryn melt. Tasha met no resistence when she parted Janeways lips with her tounge. A low moan escaped Kathryn as she responded to the younger woman's kisses. She pressed the older woman down, sliding her right leg between Janeway's. Tasha made no attempt to go further, seeming content with the kisses. After what seemed an eternity, she lifted her head. "Kathryn..." She brought her hand up to stroke Janeway's cheek. Kathryn reached out and caught Tasha's hand. Slowly, she brought Tasha's hand down to her left breast. Tasha caressed the soft mound, deliberately avoiding the nipple. "I don't want to force you."

"You're not." was the husky reply from the older woman. "But I think maybe we should slow this down. She gently pushed Tasha's hand away and slipped out from under Tasha's legs.

"You're the one who put my hand on your breast," Tasha laughed. "and you're telling me to slow down?"

"I just think we should talk." Kate sat up now, facing Tasha. She couldn't believe how nice it felt to kissed by this blond beauty. She didn't want to stop, not really. Kathryn wanted more. But there were questions that plagued her mind. "Tasha..did you love Deanna?" As soon as she said it, she wished she could take it back. "I'm sorry, I had no right-"

"It's all right." Tasha interuppted. "I wondered if you knew."

"I read her personal logs."

Tasha looked at her in amazement. "You looked at her personal logs? Why would you do something like that?" She sat back, putting some room between them.

"Tasha, I had to. I had to know why you were put in the tube. You died trying to save her life." She turned her head away from Tasha's stare. "But now I need to know. Tasha...were you lovers?" She looked into the blue eyes.

"Yes." Tasha gazed upward. "We were occasional lovers. Only two other people knew. We would turn to each other from time to time for companionship and comfort. Sometimes it was just to satisfy a need. We were very close. She knew me. She knew how I was feeling. She could sense what I needed. I never felt that with anyone else..." Tasha leaned forward and brought her face to Kathryn's. "Until you." She put her hand behind Janeway's neck and pulled them together. Thier forheads touched. They stayed there, saying nothing, for several moments.

"Tash.." Kathryn brought her hand up to stroke the blond hair.

"Kathryn, I loved Deanna. I'll never deny that. But I have feelings for you as well. I know how many sacrafices you made to help me. I remember the nights you held me. You gave me more than anyone in my whole life. You never gave up on me, even when I was willing to give up on myself."

"I can't give you any promises." Thier lips moved closer.

"I won't ask..." Tasha's voice was ragged. Thier words were lost in a sea of kisses. They explored each other's mouths slowly, taking it all in. Tasha's hand went to the breast it had touched earlier. This time it was with more authority. She squeezed gently, rubbing her thumb across the red material. She could feel Janeway's nipple hardening beneath her touch. Her kisses became more urgent, demanding. Kathryn was lost to the feelings. Tasha pressed Kathryn back to the ground and laid on top of her. She pulled the top of the red suit down, exposing Kathryn's left breast. Like a hungry kitten, Yar licked and sucked, causing Kate to moan and murmur in pleasure. She put her fingers in the blond hair and pressed Tasha's head down. Yar responded by nibbling and biting her tit, causing Janeway to cry out and press her pelvis into Tasha's leg.

"Oh..Katy.." Tasha could feel the passion building. She pulled Kathryn up. Tasha pulled the strap down on the red swimsuit, placing soft kisses where material used to be. As the right breast made it's way out, Tasha planted several soft kisses on it before continuing downward. She ran her tongue lightly on her stomach, causing another round of moans. Tasha pulled the suit down, and Janeway stepped out of it. Then it was Kathryn's turn.

She kissed Tasha, taking the time to savor the taste of her mouth. She reached up through the diamond of missing material and cupped Tasha's left breast.

"Tash...you're so soft." She murmurred. The kissing continued as it was now Tasha's turn to moan. Although Kathryn wasn't as experienced as her young lover, she did know her way around a woman. She brought her other hand in and had both of Tasha's breasts under her control. She rolled the nipples between her fingers. One of her hands left Yar's breast and went to the other end of the diamond. She place her hand on the blond mound and pressed. Tasha responded by pressing hard against her. She could feel the heat between Tasha's legs.

"Please...Katy.." Tasha's voice was shaky.

"Tash...I want you." Janeway's raspy voice said. Her finger slipped between the folds and felt Tasha's wetness. A smile crept to Janeway's lips. "Lieutenant, I do believe you are quite excited." A grin replaced the smile. Her finger moved slowly in and out, making Tasha's knees weaken.

"Yes..captain...I am...rather..excited." The words came out in short breaths.

"So am I." With that, the gold swimsuit came off. They laid on the towels, holding and kissing each other. They interlocked thier legs, rubbing against each other. Thier hands moved over each other, searching, learning. Both women were locked in thier passion.

"Tash.." Janeway's voice was barely audible. She hadn't felt passion like this for so long. She continued her exploration. She entered Tasha with two fingers, and the young woman's back arched, giving Kathryn more access. Slowly she moved the fingers in and out, watching Tasha's face as the excitement was building. Tasha raised her hips, meeting each thrust.

"Katy...Oh...ahh..yes...please...oh.." Tasha's words became incoherant as the passion consumed her. Kathryn placed her thumb on the swollen clit and rubbed hard. Her other hand was busy exploring the soft swell of Tasha's breasts. Tasha's moans became louder as she lost control. Kathryn could feel the pussy tightening around her fingers. She pinched the nipples and increased her pumping as Tasha's moans let way to screams of pleasure. Tasha's body stiffened as a powerful orgasm ripped through her body. Kathryn's hand became soaked as wave after wave of juice poured from the young woman. She stopped pumping and held her fingers still, waiting for Tasha to return from estacy. Slowly, the body beneath her relaxed, and Janeway removed her fingers.

They laid together for a long time, not speaking.

"Chakotay to Captain Janeway." A curse came from her mouth as she reached for her com badge.

"Go ahead Commander."

"Captain, long range sensors have picked up Kazon ships orbiting a small class M planet. Request permission to change course to investigate." Kathryn sat up, knowing the mood was ruined. She could see the dissapointment in the young woman's face.

"Permission granted. Make sure we stay out of range of thier sensors. I want the element of surprise in our favor." Turning, she saw that Tasha had put her suit back on. "Janeway out."

Kathryn put her suit on and went over to where Tasha was standing. She put her arms around the young woman. "Tasha..." Before she could react, the young woman pressed against her, claiming her mouth. There was a fury to the kiss. It was a punishment as well as a pleasure. Kathryn wanted to give in, to give herself to Tasha. Abruptly, Tasha pulled away.

"Duty calls, Captain." The blue eyes stared intently at Janeway. "We'll have to finish this later." One more short kiss and Tasha left the holodeck.

It was several hours before Voyager reached the planet. Paris had manuvered the ship behind a moon, so it was still undetectable. Kathryn sat in her chair at the end of the table in her ready room. The senior officers were in attendence to make thier reports.

"This planet is rich in minerals." Harry said. "There are deposits of Dilithium, Trilithium and Bergonight available."

"Lt. Torres?" Kathryn looked at the half-klingon

"There appears to be a mining colony near the deposits. My guess is that the Kazons are stripping the minerals from the planet."

"Mr. Tuvok, report."

"There are three scout ships." The vulcan said. "Standard runabouts, minimal firepower and shields. We could handle a fight if necessary."

"Very good. How many Kazons are on the planet surface?"

Tuvok looked at his notes. "There appears to be approximently 30 Kazons on the surface. We do not know what kind of weapons they may possess."

Janeway looked at Torres.

"Lieutenant, how badly do we need the Dilithium?"

"Captain, we are almost into our reserves. We could go anther week or so, but then we would have to look for another deposit." Janeway thought about it. She didn't want to engage in a battle with the Kazons, but she knew they needed the dilithium. She also knew that there would be no negotiating with the Kazon.

"Well, it appears that we have no choice." Janeway's face was grim. "Mr. Tuvok, assemble an away team to investigate the surface. Mr. Paris, prepare to engage those Kazon ships. I want thier communication knocked out first. We don't need the calvary to arrive before we are finished."

"Aye Captain." Paris responded.

Kathryn walked towards Tasha's quarters. It was 1800 hours, time for thier dinner, and possibly dessert, she thought. Arriving at the quarters, she pressed the button on the panel. No response. She pressed again. "Computer...locate Lt. Yar."

"Lt. Yar is not on board." A fearful thought entered Kathryn's mind.

"Computer, where is Lt. Yar now?"

"Lt. Yar beamed down to the surface two hours ago." She must be part of the away team. A combination of fear and anger filled the captian. She pressed her com badge.

"Janeway to away team. Mr. Tuvok, is Lt. Yar with you?" no response.

"Janeway to away team...respond." Her voice became edgy. Finally a voice cracked through.

"Captain, this is Ensign Stokes. We're under fire. Request assistance." There was only one thought on her mind. Tasha.

"Ensign, what's the status down there? What happened? Where is Mr. Tuvok?"

"Captain, we were ambushed. There are approximently sixty fully armed Kazons down here."

"Help is on it's way. Janeway out." She pressed the com panel on the wall. "Attention all hands. Battle stations. Mr. Paris, commence attack upon those ships. I want them disabled immediately. All security forces report to the transporter rooms. Mr. Chakotay, meet me in Transporter Room 4."

Chakotay was waiting for her when she arrived. The transporter was busy beaming the security force down to the planet. She reached over to the weapons rack and removed two large phaser rifles and two hand phasers. She handed one each to Chakotay, then stepped up on the transport pad. Instantly they were beamed down to the surface. As her eyes adjusted to the bright light, she could see that the new security force was overcoming the Kazons. She noticed a Kazon perched on top of a ledge, aiming at one of the crewmen. She took aim with the phaser rifle and fired. A brilliant blast of light emitted from the weapon and struck its target. The Kazon screamed as he fell to the ground below.

"Chakotay, spread out and find Mr. Tuvok and Lt. Yar." She looked at the five crewmembers standing near her. "You come with me." She headed toward the mine shaft.

Within an hour, the battle was over. She still could not find Lt. Yar or Mr. Tuvok. Three other crewmen were also missing. Chakotay walked up to where she was standing.


"Yes, Chakotay, what do you have to report?"

"There are three dead and five still unaccounted for. I've sent out search parties." He looked at Janeway. He could see the concern in her eyes. "Captain, Lt. Yar and Mr. Tuvok were not among the dead."

"Very good. Advise me of any changes." She looked at the mine shaft again. It ran deep into the side of a mountain. Could they be in there? Slowly, she entered the dark shaft.

Kathryn shivered at the coldness of the shaft. She thought she saw light further ahead. She pressed the com badge again.

"Janeway to Tuvok, come in." Then she heard it. A phaser blast about 500 meters ahead. As she ran closer, she could hear the shouts of Lt. Yar commanding the team. She turned the corner and saw them. The shaft opened up into a large cavern. The missing crewmen were perched on top a ledge, cut off from escape. She could see Yar engaged in a firefight with three Kazon. She raised her phaser rifle and took aim. She sent a series of shots in the direction of the Kazon. She wanted to draw thier fire away from her trapped crewmen. Behind her, the sound of running footsteps was heard. Chakotay had heard the shots and brought a team in to investigate.

"Chakotay, the crewmen are trapped up on that ledge." She pointed. "Take your men over there and we'll try to flank the Kazon." Janeway ducked as a phaser blast erupted over her head. She fired, hitting the Kazon squarely in the chest. Chakotay and his team made thier way around and were firing at the enemy. Within minutes, the battle was over. The ten Kazon were dead.

"Captain." Tasha's tone was urgent. Chakotay and Janeway made thier way over toward the ledge. She saw the lifeless body of Mr. Tuvok.

"Janeway to Voyager...One to beam directly to sickbay." She watched as the beam took the body of the Vulcan. She turned to look at Tasha. Part of her wanted to hold the blond, to take comfort knowing that she was okay. But Kathryn knew this was not the time. "Lieutenent, what happened?" She said it in a matter-of-fact voice. Tasha looked surprised.

"We followed some Kazons in here. We were cut off from the exit by another group of Kazons. The battle started and we were outnumbered. We took refuge on this ledge. Mr. Tuvok was hit as he tried to climb up here." Kathryn was fighting a battle within herself. She wanted to yell at Tasha. Why was she taking chances? Why was she risking her life? Quietly, she said "Lieutenant, I expect a full report in my office within the hour."

"Yes Captain." Tasha's voice was firm. She knew Kathryn was upset. She had every right to be. They took a chance, following the Kazon into an unknown place. She also knew that Janeway's feelings were more personal.

"That's all." Janeway walked away. Tasha stood there and looked at her, knowing that another battle would be had once they were back onboard the ship.

Tasha stood in front of Janeway's desk as the captain read her report. Kathryn had not spoken to Tasha since they returned to the ship. The look in Janeway's eyes told Tasha not to say a word. The reports of the other members from the away team were scattered about her desk. She looked up at Tasha.

"Lieutenent, the reports of the other crewmen support your version of the events, but I have a few questions." She stood up from her desk and walked closer to the young woman. She reached out and touched Tasha's cheek. "Tasha.." she said in a low voice. "Do you realize how worried I was? You could have been hurt." Before Tasha could speak, Janeway moved away from her. Her voice raised. "You could have been killed! I lost four crew members today, including the best security chief I've ever known. What were you thinking entering an unknown area?" Kathryn put her hands on her desk, supporting herself. Her back was to Tasha, but the young woman could see she was crying. Tasha moved forward and placed a hand on Janeway's shoulder.

"Kathryn...I'm sorry. I know that you're upset, but you need to realize.." She turned Janeway around to face her. "I am security. That's my job. I have to take chances. I know it scares you but that's the way it is." She leaned forward and kissed away a tear. "I don't want to hurt you but you have to let me do my job."

"I was so scared when I found out you were on the away team." Janeway's arms moved around Tasha, holding her close. "All I wanted was for you to be safe. I wanted to protect you." They kissed. "Tasha...I don't want to lose you." Tasha broke the embrace and turned away.

"Kathryn...I don't come with guarentees. You have to take me as I am...no matter what may happen." They looked at each other, knowing there were no words to say. Tasha turned and left.

Kathryn stared at the ceiling. It was 2300 and she knew this was not where she wanted to be. She wanted to be in the arms of the thin, blond, security chief. Before retiring for the night, she had made the notation in the logs promoting Tasha to Chief of Security. Now all she wanted was to be taken by her. Janeway rose from the bed and put her robe on. She left her quarters. She walked down the cooridor and pressed the button outside Tasha's room.

"Enter." was the reply from inside. Kathryn entered the room and saw Tasha standing there. Her robe barely covered her breasts. Janeway could tell Tasha was naked under the sheer material.

"Tasha.." Her mouth felt very dry.

"I've been waiting. I knew you would come." Tasha moved toward her and they kissed. It was slow and gentle at first, then harder, more demanding as Tasha took control. She led Janeway to the bed and pushed her down. With cat-like grace, Tasha was upon her. She opened Kathryn's robe and gazed at the breasts exposed to her. She took one nipple in her mouth, licking.

"Oh...Tash..." Kathryn knew this was what she wanted. The activity on her nipple became more forceful. Tasha nibbled and bit at the tender nipple. Kathryn could feel the moisture forming between her legs.

"Katy..." Tasha's voice was rough. "Tell me. Tell me what you want." She suckled the other breast while her leg worked its way between Kathryn's. Tasha could feel the heat against her thigh. She knew what her captain needed. She pressed against Janeway's mound, causing more moans from the older woman. Tasha could feel the desire rising in her lover. She blazed a trail down Kathryn's body with her tongue. She reached the auburn hair that covered Kate's sex. She nuzzled it, feeling the softness. Tasha could smell Kathryn's sexuality. She slipped her tongue between the folds, licking up the juices that had formed. The sweet, salty taste made her hunger for more. But Tasha didn't want to rush this. She wanted Kate, she wanted her bad, and tonight she would have her. Tonight Tasha wanted to take Kathryn to new heights. She continued to lick the juices with her tongue, careful not to touch the clit. Janeway's squirming was increasing.

"Tash...oh Tash...please.." Her words were pleading. She reached down to guide her lover, but Tasha resisted. Tasha lifted her head and looked at her. She knew that Kathryn was in her control. Tasha loved having control in bed. It gave her a thrill to know how much pleasure she could bring.

"No Katy...not yet. I need to be sure." Tasha's voice had a hint of danger to it.

"Tash...please...it feels so good."

"I'm sure it does. You like having my tongue in your pussy, don't you?" A moan confirmed her statement. "Tell me...tell me you want it. Tell me you want me." She reached around and grabbed Janeway's buttocks, squeezing tightly. "What do you want Katy?" Her tone was mocking, teasing.

"Tash..please..I want you...I want to feel you..." Kathryn desparetly said. Again she arched her hips toward Tasha. Again, Tasha resisted. She pushed the hips back down.

"Do you want me Katy?"

"Yes. I want you Tasha."

"Do you want me to be gentle?" She brought her hand around and was lightly stroking between Kathryn's pussy lips.


"No Katy. That's not what you want at all." Her finger probed deeper, brushing up against the clit. "You want me to be rough. To take you. That's what you want, isn't it?" She pressed harder against the swollen clit. Janeway was in orbit. She had never felt this sensation before. She had never given herself completely to anyone. But, oh how she wanted this one. She wanted everything her blond lover could give.

"Yes...I want you to take me." With that, Tasha's fingers found thier mark. She quickly entered the older woman. One finger, then two, then three. She was pumping hard, fucking her with abandon. She reveled in the warm softness of Kathryn's pussy.

"Is this what you want?" Tasha's voice had the air of dangerousness. "You want this, don't you? You want me to fuck you. You want me to fuck you hard." She slipped a fourth finger into Kate's soaking pussy.

"Yes...oh...Tash..." Kathryn's head was moving from side to side. She was completely lost in the throws of passion. She knew she couldn't last much longer. Tasha could feel it too. She removed her fingers and replaced them with her tongue. She sucked, licked, and nibbled on Kate's clit until she could feel the rising cresendo approaching. She shoved her fingers hard into Kate's pussy. The older woman let a scream. Tasha knew the orgasm was fast approaching.

"Katy..come for me. Show your lover what she does to you." Tasha's hand was a blur as it entered and exited Kathryn's womb. Tasha could feel the spasms start. "Come on...give your Tasha what she wants..come on....give it to me..." Janeway arched her back, forcing herself onto Tasha's hand. Her pussy gripped and released the fingers it held. Kathryn felt herself floating away in the estacy. As her orgasm overtook her, she heard Tasha say "Katy....I love you."

Kathryn opened her eyes and looked around the room. It was sparsly furnished. She shifted, and the ache between her legs reminded her of the passion of the previous night. She rolled over, and came face to face with her new lover. Tasha was still sleeping soundly. She lightly kissed Tasha's forehead, and slipped out from under the covers.

Tasha rolled over and felt the empty pillow. In protest, she opened one eye. Katy was gone. She sat up, yawning.

"Computer, what time is it?"

"It is now 0942." Tasha jumped from her bed. She was supposed to be in a meeting at 0930. Racing around the room, she through her gold and black jumpsuit on. Cursing to herself, she raced out the door.

"As I was saying, oh..good morning Lieutenent." Janeway said as Tasha raced into the ready room. "Nice of you to join us today." Kathryn tone was sarcastic, but her smile was genuine. Part of her enjoyed seeing Tasha's embarassment as she walked into the room.

"I apologize Captain. It won't happen again." Tasha was all business as she took her seat.

"Well, this is as good a time as any, I suppose. Effective today, Lt. Tasha Yar will be our new chief of security. She will be assigned to the bridge, replacing Mr. Tuvok. Lt., I trust you have met the rest of the senior officers?" Tasha looked around the room and recognized the faces. She nodded in affirmation. "Good. I hope the transition will be a smooth one." Kathryn went on with the rest of the meeting, occasionally looking at the blond who had given her so much pleasure last night. There was no smile on Tasha's face, no hint of what had happened between them. The meeting ended, and the officers filed out. Tasha stayed behind, as did Janeway.

"How are you this morning, Lieutenent? You look a little tired." There was playfulness in her voice. "Did you overexert yourself last night?" Tasha looked at her and Kate could see the dangerness in her eyes. She realized she had pushed the lioness too far. In a flash, Tasha was upon her, pushing her down onto the table. Her mouth was demanding, hard, not at all like last night. She kissed Janeway until she had her fill, then moved off of her.

"Why did you leave this morning?"

"I had to get ready for work." Kathryn turned her eyes away from Tasha. She didn't know why she left. She couldn't explain her feelings. She suddenly felt very uncomfortable.

"Katy...I don't understand. I mean, after last night...well, didn't it mean anything to you?" Tasha looked at her, trying to figure out what happened, what went wrong.

"Tash...it meant more to me than you will ever know." Janeway looked at her, her voice quiet.

"Then why did you leave? I was looking forward to waking up in your arms. What happened between last night and this morning?" Tasha had moved to the other end of the table, as if being too close to Kathryn was dangerous.

"I'm sorry Tasha. I have some things on my mind. Please excuse me, I have work to do."

The blue eyes flashed in anger.

"Yes Ma'am. Lt. Yar requesting permission to leave the room, Captain." Kate couldn't miss the venom in the statement.


"Lt. Yar requesting permission to leave the room, Captain." Tasha refused to look at her. Janeway thought she could see moisture forming in those blue eyes.

"Granted." Tasha left the ready room. Kathryn sat down in her seat and rubbed her temples. Last night Tasha told her that she loved her. Kathryn was so engrossed in the magic the young woman performed on her body that she couldn't react to the statement at the time. This morning was different. She hadn't really thought about the possibility that Tasha would fall in love with her.

"Computer, display all previously downloaded personel logs." She looked at the list in front of her. One name stood out. Troi. Tasha never answered her question. Was she still in love with the betazoid? She said she loved Troi, but she didn't say if she was in love with her. More thoughts entered Janeway's mind. Was Tasha using her as a substitute? Kathryn discovered she had more than a headache when she finished her reading. She also had a heartache. She needed to talk to someone. But who? Reluctantly, she pressed her com badge.

"Janeway to Kes."

"Kes here, go ahead Captain."

"Kes, can you report to my ready room?"

"On my way Captain."

Kes listened as Kathryn poured her heart out. Kathryn told the whole story, with no omissions.

"Well, do you think she told you she loved you out of passion?"

"I don't know, Kes. But I do know I can't just go ask her."

"Why not?" Kes didn't understand the way the human emotions worked sometimes.

"Kes, I can't just go up and ask her if something she said in a private, intimate moment is true. That's not the way it works."

"Oh, the way it works is that you drive yourself crazy trying to read her mind?"

"Yes. I mean no. I mean...oh hell. I don't know what I mean."

Kes stood up and walked behind Kathryn's chair. She put her hands on the Captain's shoulders in a gesture of comfort. "Kathryn..." Kes never addressed her by her first name. "I think you need to sit down and talk with Lt. Yar. You have to give her a chance. From what I can see, there are deep feelings in both directions."

At 1800, Kathryn was standing outside the entrance to Tasha's quarters. She had been standing there for ten minutes before she found the courage to press the button.

"Come." Tasha was waiting for her. Dinner was on the table. Kathryn sat down.

"Tash, I think we need to talk."

"I wasn't sure you would show up for dinner."

"I wasn't sure I would either."

"I'm glad you did." Tasha's blue eyes flickered. A gentle smile crossed her lips. "I want to apologize for this morning. I was out of line. I understand that there's a line between business and pleasure."

"Tash...I'm the one who's sorry. Last night was something incredibly special to me. No one has ever made me feel that way before. I've never given in so willingly to my feelings."

"Then what happened?"

"I don't know..." Kathryn looked at her. There was something about this woman. Something so right, yet that question kept burning. "I do know. Tash, I need an answer. Were you telling the truth last night?"

"You mean when I said I love you?"

"Yes." Kathryn's head was down. She was scared to hear the answer. Tasha got up out of the chair and walked over to Kathryn. She knelt down before the older woman and placed her hand on Kathryn's chin, forcing her to look at her.

"Katy...I'm not one to say those words lightly. Last night was very important to me. I can't describe the pleasure it brings me to please you. Yes, I do love you." Tasha could see there was more to Kathryn's question. "You want to know about Deanna."

"Yes." The word was said quietly, with guilt.

"Katy, I have feelings for Deanna. Yes, I love her. But that part of my life is gone. My life is here now." She leaned in and kissed her. "It's here with you." She kissed her again.

"Tash..." Janeway could feel the weight leaving her mind.

"Shh...eat your dinner. We'll talk later." They ate thier dinner and settled down on the couch. Tasha laid in Katy's lap as they talked about thier lives. That night they made love slowly, gently, each trying to express thier feelings physically. Tasha was insatiable. She couldn't get enough of the taste of Janeway. They brought each other to orgasm time and time again, stopping only when exhaustion took over. After the lovemaking, they nuzzled close together and fell asleep in each other's arms.

It was 0530 when the computer woke Janeway. She rolled over and kissed her blond lover on the cheek. A smile formed on the sleeping face. Kathryn kissed her again, with more determination.

"Good morning." Tasha yawned.

"I hope it will be." Katy kissed her again, parted Tasha's mouth with her tongue. The younger woman responded, moaning softly.

"Mmm, what's this for?"

"This is for you. I call it morning delight." Kathryn reached over and cupped Tasha's right breast. "Tash...I want you. I want to make love to you. Now." Her fingers danced over Tasha's nipple, sending sparks though her. Kathryn's mouth moved to give attention to the other breast, kissing and suckling as Tasha squirmed beneath her.

"Katy...oh...it feels so nice."

"Mmm..it's supposed to." Her sucking became more intense. She started to nibble and bite as she had felt Tasha do to her. Tasha responded immediately. Kathryn's hands continued to work thier way down, stopping at the blond bush. She grabbed hold of some pubic hairs and gently pulled. The low moan that escaped from Tasha's mouth told her that she had gotten the reaction she wanted. Kathryn stopped the assualt on Tasha's breasts and moved her mouth downward, planting little kisses along the way.

"Katy..oh..yes.." Tasha's voice trailed off as she went to new heights. Kathryn kissed the blond hair, then the outer lips, then the thighs. Tasha moaned with the teasing and arched toward her mouth. Kathryn pulled her head back.

"Not yet...I want this to last." Kathryn said as she continued to tease Tasha with her tongue. She kissed the outer folds again, tasting the beginning of Tasha's juices, but wouldn't go any furthur. Tasha knew what she was doing. She knew that Kathryn was making her wait, getting her hotter. But Kathryn forgot that her naked body was within Tasha's reach. In a flash, Tasha rolled over on top of the captain so that her legs were near Kathryn's head.

"So..you thought you could tease me?" Tasha was looking at Kathryn's bush, licking her lips in anticipation. "Did you forget that you're mine and I control you?" She leaned down and placed her tongue squarely on Kathryn's clit. She moved her pussy so that it was right over Kathryn's face. With great joy, she lowered her blond bush onto Kathryn's waiting tongue. They stayed in the 69 position, bringing each other pleasure. The room was filled with the scent of thier sex. Tasha was the first to climax. Kathryn was furiously licking her clit and probing her pussy hole with her tongue. Tasha started to buck and rock against the soft muscle. Kathryn could feel Tasha approach orgasm. The young woman's body started to shake, and non-intelligable words were coming from her mouth.

"Katy!...oh..mmm..yes...please...ya...uh...oh...Katy...Katy!" Tasha exploded as wave after wave shook her body. Kathryn tried to lick up all the juice, but it was coming too fast. It ran down her cheeks. She felt Tasha's body go limp upon her. Slowly, Tasha rolled off her, spent. They laid next to each other for a few moments while Tasha regained her composure. Then it was Kathryn's turn. Tasha positioned herself between Kate's legs and returned her mouth to the pussy she enjoyed so much. She licked slowly, savoring the taste. Janeway started to tremble as her climax approached. Tasha increased the pressure on the clit, nibbling and sucking. She reached under and slid two fingers into Kathryn's soaked pussy hole. She slid them in and out while continuing her assault on the clit. Janeway came immediately, soaking Tasha's fingers with her juice. Tasha held her mouth against Kate's pussy until the spasms stopped, then climbed up and laid down next to her. They stayed together in silence as Kathryn slowly came back to reality. It was Janeway who finally broke the silence.

"I love you Natasha." Tasha looked at her, tears forming in her eyes. She had waited so long to hear those words.

"I love you too Katy." They held each other tight, letting the world pass around them.

It was 1100 before they left their love bed. Tasha suggested they shower together, to save engery, but Kathryn laughed and said that it would take all day to get them out. Tasha went on duty at 1200 and Kate was left with the day to herself. She decided to check in on the troops. She wandered along the coridoors, smiling to herself. It was a very nice day. She made a point of stopping by sickbay and thanking Kes for her help. Kathryn felt a renewed joy, a feeling that she had been missing for so long. It would take years to get home, but with Tasha around, those years would be enjoyable. It was 1600 before she returned to her quarters.

"Sickbay to Captain Janeway." Kathryn was startled out of her reading.

"Janeway here, go ahead Doctor."

"We have a medical emergency here. I request that you come immediately."

"I'm on my way." Kathryn put down the reports she was reading and headed for sickbay. She wondered what could be so wrong that it would warrant a call to the Captain? Her heart lept to her throat with one thought. Tasha. She broke into a run.

She arrived at sickbay to see that, indeed, Tasha was there. She was sitting up in bed, her arm being treated by the Doctor. Kathryn could see the jagged edges where her flesh had been torn off. She wanted to run to her, to hold her. But this was the Chief of Security, and she was the Captain. They had agreed to keep thier love affair private for now, and Kathryn had to respect that. Tasha was still new to the crew, and she didn't need rumors to undermine her authority.

"What happened?" The words came out with more concern that she would have liked.

"It appears that Lt. Yar attempted to intervene in a disagreement between Lt. Torres and Mr. Paris." The Doctor said. "Lt. Torres decided that Yar's arm looked like a good thing to bite. Tasha looked at Kathryn, saying nothing. Tasha was glad she was here, but also wished they hadn't called her. She was Chief of Security, she could handle whatever matters arose.

"Lieutenent, would you like to tell me what happened?"

"It started as a disagreement, but then it got out of hand. When security came upon the scene, Lt. Torres had a choke hold around Lt. Paris's neck. I attempted to break the hold, and was bitten in return." Kathryn looked closer at the wound. It was deep, but not dangerous. She breathed a sigh of relief. Tasha's arm would be fine in a matter of minutes.

"Well then, I guess you have everything under control. I'll expect a report on my desk in the morning." Kathryn made her acknoledgements and left. She knew she would see Tasha in a few minutes for dinner.

Tasha walked into her quarters and noticed the flashing message light. She frowned. It was 1745 and she only had fifteen minutes to change and get dinner ready. She hoped this wasn't bad news.

"Computer, display message." She sat down on the couch, expecting a verbal message.

"Message is handwritten." Came the response. Intrigued, Tasha walked over to her desk. She turned the viewscreen so she could see it.

"Computer, display message." A simple note said:

Come to my room

I'm sure you know the way

I'll be waiting



Tasha read the note again, savoring the last two lines. She quickly changed and headed for the Captain's Quarters.

When Tasha arrived, she noticed two things. One was that the lights were dimmed to twenty percent. The other was that Janeway had changed her clothes. Tasha had never seen this outfit before. She wondered if anyone had. Kathryn was wearing a red, form fitting, strapless dress. It pressed so much against her breasts that Tasha could make out the nipple, even in the subduded light. It stopped halfway between the thighs and knees, and a slit revealed her shapley hips. Tasha swallowed hard. She had never seen Kathryn look so lovely.

"Hi, I hope you're hungry." Tasha's eyes never left her.

"Oh yes." Without thinking, Tasha, licked her lips. She knew what she wanted.

"Put your eyes on the table sweetheart, I'm not on the menu." Tasha took her seat. As Kathryn walked by, she put her hand on Tasha's shoulder.

"Except possibly for dessert." She leaned in and kissed her.

Kathryn knew this was one voyage she didn't want to end.

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