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Author’s note: And now back to my favourite genre! Action/Adventure, Alternate Universe!! Mwa-ha ha ha haaa!! J
Tom was eating a meal in the mess hall. The food wasn’t great but he’d had worse. Besides he wanted to conserve his replicator rations. He would need to replicate some data storage devices to get the information Em had left in Voyager’s database. He would take the information with him when he left Voyager.
Tom rubbed the back of his neck trying to determine why he felt like somebody was watching him. Surreptitiously, he gazed around the mess hall searching for any suspicious characters looking in his direction. The mess hall was fairly busy but in the crowd of faces Tom notices one person staring at him. When she realizes her target is looking at her she looks away.
Tom leaves the mess hall a few minutes later his destination, his quarters. Once he’s there he sits at his computer and runs a series of diagnostics over Voyager’s systems. He finds nothing wrong but that doesn’t mean much. Diagnostic have missed errors before.
Tom leans back in his chair thinking. What would that woman be planning? Maybe he was just being paranoid. Well, nearly fifteen years of watching your back can do that to a person.
He remembered what Sobey said to him when he was on the Liberty. Tom contemplates what his next move should be. Go to Chakotay? Got to the Captain? With what evidence?
“Come in,” Chakotay says after hearing the announcer to his office ring. Tom steps in and Chakotay is slightly surprised to see him. He rarely sees Tom outside of the bridge. “Tom, what can I do for you?”
Tom paused trying to word his question carefully. He had heard that Chakotay and his suspect were intimate for a while. “Do you trust Seska?” Tom asked trying not to imply anything but it was hard not to.
Chakotay hadn’t been expecting that sort of question. There was a keen sense of déjà vu that accompanied it as Chakotay tried to give a response. Sobey had asked him that very question when they were on the Liberty and Chakotay was not proud of the response he had given. At the time Chakotay had been in a relationship with Seska. Nobody else on the crew had known of the relationship yet but Chakotay still felt like Sobey was questioning his judgement and had gotten very angry with the other man. This time he would hold his temper in check. His judgement had been wrong about Tuvok, why not about Seska.
“I…I trust her, to a certain extent,” Chakotay said hoping his response sounded more confident than he was feeling.
Tom eyed Chakotay carefully for a moment before nodding and leaving the room before Chakotay could say anything else. Chakotay’s inability to give him a sure answer was enough.
Before he had come Tom had found some evidence that someone had been sending covert messages to someone outside the ship.
“I thought you might want to go to the holodeck for a break.”
Tom regarded the Ensign in front of him for a moment. Harry Kim reminded him of Kaiche. A brief smile flicked across Tom’s face.
“Sure Kim. Lets go,” Tom said and put down the padd he had been working on.
“You can call me Harry.”
“Harry it is,” Tom said obliging.
The two men entered the holodeck and found it full of crewmembers taking time to relax. Neelix and Crewman Baxter had been working on the program together. It was a resort program of some sort. They were in a tropical climate and the multi-levelled patio had beach chairs and tables set up.
A snooty looking waiter passed between Harry and Tom not sparing them a second glance as he went about his duties.
“Friendly sort,” Tom commented. All the holo-characters were like that: stiff and formal. The crew didn’t seem to care though. They just came to have some time away from reality.
Harry gazed out at the scenery before them. The sun was setting casting hues of orange and magenta over the horizon. The fresh breeze and the salt air had a calming effect and Harry found himself entranced by the serenity of this spot.
“Have you ever seen anything so beautiful?” Harry asked Tom.
“Yes,” Tom said.
Harry turned to look at Tom. Tom had his back to the sunset and was staring at the crowd of crewmembers, one crewmember actually. Harry followed Tom’s gaze and found his eyes resting on none other than the chief engineer. Harry looked at Tom trying to make sure he wasn’t mistaken.
B’Elanna wasn't looking in Tom and Harry’s direction and was unaware of Tom’s gaze. Harry looked at B’Elanna. She was smart, and pretty but Harry had never considered her more than a friend. She was too….confrontational for him.
“I know, I’m dreaming,” Tom said aware that Harry knew who he was looking at. Tom walked to an empty beach chair and leaned back taking his first good look at the sunset. It was beautiful.
Harry took the seat next to him and the two talked for a while. The topics were kept light and away from their personal lives. Tom and Harry found that they liked each other’s company. It was a shame Tom would be going in a few days.
“Have you ever been to Earth?” Harry asked breaking the silence they had fallen into.
“I was born there. Lived there for a few years and I go back every couple of years to see a friend.”
“I lived there most of my life.”
“You miss it,” Tom said.
“I’ll probably never see it again,” Harry said sadly.
“You’re being rather pessimistic.” Tom looked over at the usually cheerful ensign. “You’ll get back, and you’ll see her again.”
“You’re girlfriend or fiancé, whoever it is you’re thinking about.” Tom informed.
“How did you know I was thinking about my fiancé?” Harry inquired suspiciously.
“Just a guess.” Tom said turning his gaze back to the sun that had almost disappeared behind the horizon. Tom noticed Harry seemed less at ease than he had been earlier so he decided to change the subject. “There was this place on Earth I liked to visit. A bar in Marseille, France called Sandrine’s. That’s usually where I went when I was on earth.”
“A friend recommended it to you?” Harry asked, glad that the subject wasn’t on what was waiting for him back home.
“Not exactly. I heard my mother talking about it. I think it was one of the places my dad took her to a few times.” Tom continued and told Harry about the quaint little bar, the people who went there and the woman who ran the place. It didn’t sound like the kind of place Harry would visit on his own but Tom seemed convinced Harry would like the place.
A few hours later it was getting late and Tom and Harry left the holodeck to head back to their quarters. The trip to the turbolift was silent but it wasn’t an uncomfortable silence. The two were more comfortable in each other’s presence and the evening had been a pleasant change for both of them. For Tom, it was refreshing to talk to somebody other than Em.
The next morning Tom went to the sickbay as was his routine for the past couple of days. The Doctor greeted him differently this morning.
“Mr. Paris,” the Doctor greeted.
“Paris?” Tom asked casually. He wondered how the Doctor found out he was a Paris.
“Since you didn’t see it pertinent to provide us with you’re family name I took it upon myself to look through the database,” the Doc said as he scanned the area of Tom’s leg that was injured.
“That was a long shot.”
“Yes but it hit the mark. Admiral Paris’ DNA is in the system and you are his son according to my results.” The Doctor was rather proud of himself for finding out something about his mysterious patient.
Tom wondered if the Doctor would keep this to himself. It didn’t really matter though. He would be off the ship in two days.
“It seems your injury is healed,” the Doctor says and Tom gets off the biobed ready to leave, “but there are some older injuries that will require some treatment. There is some scar tissue that needs to be removed.”
“And how long would that take?”
“If you come back tomorrow I can have the instruments ready for the procedure to get at the scar tissue but the other injuries would require delicate treatments over a few weeks,” The Doctor explained.
“I’ll come back tomorrow but the other injuries will have to heal on their own.”
“Still planning on leaving,” the Doctor inferred.
“Nothing to keep me here.” Tom shot back as he walked to the exit, even though his statement wasn't entirely true.
The rest of the day went by quickly for most people. Shifts changed and ships duties continued as the sleek intrepid class vessel warped between the unnamed stars of the Delta Quadrant. It was nearly 0000 and most of those not on duty were in their quarters –most, but not all.
Lt. Torres strode towards the entrance of holodeck two. The holodeck wasn’t her destination; rather it was the power grid next to it. Engineering had received report of power fluctuations in the area. They weren’t serious, just annoying.
B’Elanna, not being able to sleep, had decided to take it upon herself and fix the grid. Her thoughts had been spread over a wide range of topics and issues, one of which was in the holodeck right now.
Seeing that the holodeck was in use B’Elanna stopped at the controls to see who was in side. She asked the computer and it told her that Tom Paris was inside. Tom Paris?
“Computer, what’s the location of Tom Corrin?” B’Elanna asked the computer. She wondered if the computer’s database had both of Tom’s identities on file.
‘Tom Corrin is in holodeck two,’ was the reply.
“Is he alone?”
B’Elanna felt more than a little tension ease from the set of her shoulders as she heard that Tom was alone. Why did it bother her so much if he was with someone else? She looked at the control panel again to see what program was running. ‘No. 8’ was the name and B’Elanna guessed it was one of Tom’s holoprograms.
Inside the holodeck Tom reloaded his weapon and took aim. It was dark out. The crescent moon high above him was providing the only lighting. Cautiously he stepped through the thick vegetation knowing that there was another potential attacker around every tree.
His gaze slowly swept across the forested area carefully, as not to miss any detail. A slight inconsistency of the dark shadows alerted him to the presence of one of his targets. Raising his weapon slightly he pulled the trigger and watched the almost perfectly hidden man fall to the ground unconscious.
A slight motion in the stillness caught Tom’s eye and he fired in that direction successfully taking down his last target. A slight smile crossed Tom’s features as he mentally adjusted the score, Me: seven, them: none.
Tom headed to the clearing ahead were the last stage of this simulation was set. Cautiously he emerged from the forest. He crouched down and swept the entire area with his rifle but there was no one in sight. Staying as low as he could, Tom crept to the side of the building close to the entrance. He prepared himself for the security patrol that would be coming around the corner in a few seconds.
Tom switched weapons pulling out two smaller firearms. The footsteps became louder as the patrol approached. By the sound of it there were at least two, maybe three coming. Tom held his guns poised to fire.
He was ready to give the security patrol an unwelcome surprise when they came around but suddenly all the colour in the holodeck was replaced with shades of red. Tom stood knowing what was happening. Somebody had gotten through the privacy lock and was about to enter the holodeck.
The program fizzled away just as the doors opened to permit the entrance of B’Elanna Torres. She only got a chance to see the program vanish leaving Tom standing in the middle of the holodeck clad in dark clothing. Tom turned to look at her but said nothing.
B’Elanna walked in and looked around wondering what program had been running. She stopped walking when she was a few meters in front of him.
“Number Eight,” she said, “I’m guessing it’s one of yours,”
“That it is,” Tom said not sound at all angry that she had just walked in on his program when there had been a privacy lock in place. “I expected more from you,” Tom said and B’Elanna began to worry that he was mad and she just couldn’t tell. “If you’re such a good engineer you should have been able to get in to the holodeck without tripping any of the alerts. You must be slipping.” Tom cracked a slight smile.
B’Elanna raised a challenging eyebrow before taking another look around. “What kind of program was it?”
“One that I made,” Tom said and watched as she stifled the surge of annoyance that threatened to overwhelm her at his response.
“A pilot, a demolition expert, and holo-programmer,” She said as she stepped closer to him. “Any other secret talents.” She said with half a smile
Tom leaned forward so there faces were only a few inches apart. “Wouldn’t you like to know.”
Both were frozen in place for a few seconds before B’Elanna stepped around him and looked around the holodeck just to get her mind off the man in front of her. She had noticed some of the glances Tom threw at her the other day in the holodeck and had been wondering what promise they held. Now that she was finally alone with him she didn’t know what to do.
“You must be an engineer too,” B’Elanna said wit her back to him.
“What makes you say that?”
“When you saved the Liberty from the Cardassian ship and crashed on that planet, your shuttle was heavily damaged. Yet somehow you managed to repair it and get off that planet.” She turned to face him. “I’m not so sure even I could have fixed that.”
“I had some help,” Tom said cryptically. She just looked at him wondering what he was keeping from her and from everybody.
Tom carefully looked at B’Elanna trying to commit her every feature to memory. He was attracted to her; there was no doubt about that in his mind. It only made leaving more difficult; he would deprive himself of the chance of getting to know her. He tried to clear the thought from his mind. He didn’t need another matter trying to dissuade him from leaving. If there were so many things telling him to stay, he thought to himself, then maybe he should.
“If you’ll excuse me,” Tom said and turned to leave. This conversation had gone on long enough.
“Are you part of a covert operations department, or something?” B’Elanna asked Tom’s retreating form.
“Covert ops?” Tom said turning his head to look at her over his shoulder. She didn’t say anything, only waited for an answer. “You’ve been reading too many fiction novels, Torres,” Tom said and left the holodeck.
Somewhere else on Voyager Seska made another communiqué to the Kazon. She finalized the plan and cut the link. Checking the status of the ship’s systems, everything was as it should be. No alerts had been sounded and nobody had stumbled across her transmission.
Allowing herself a triumphant smile, Seska closed the small terminal. In less than forty-eight hours, Tom Paris would be in the hands of the Kazon, if everything went according to plan. She almost felt sorry for him.
In his quarters Tom watched as the link was broken. He had retrieved one of his surveillance programs from his encrypted information and used it to monitor external communications. Unfortunately the transmission had been very short and Tom only got a few pieces of information.
Checking the information, Tom saw that the incoming audio of the last transmission had been recorded by the program but that was all that was documented. The identity of Voyager’s traitor was still unknown but Tom had a gut feeling that it was none other than Seska.
He searched through the computers logs looking for any other useful information but gave up a few hours later deciding he needed to get some sleep. He’d tell Janeway about what he had found later that day, if he felt inclined to do so.
Early that morning Captain Janeway, padd in hand walked through the corridor of deck three on her way to see Tom Corrin or Tom Paris, whatever he chose to call himself. The padd in her hand contained the information that she had found in the classified files and the intelligence reports. She wanted to get the truth from him. She needed to hear from him that he was or was not Tommy Paris so that one day she could tell Admiral Paris about his son.
She came to the entrance to his quarters and rang the chime. She had checked with the computer and knew that Tom was inside. A moment later Tom called for the person to enter.
The Captain entered Tom’s quarters and saw him standing in the middle of the room watching her as she came in.
“Captain, what can I do for you?” Tom asked politely.
“I was hoping you could clear something up for me,” Janeway said and handed him the padd.
Tom looked at Janeway carefully before he looked at the information on the padd. He read a couple of lines of the first file then went to the next one and the one after that and so on until he had seen enough.
“Tom Paris? Or Tom Corrin?” Janeway posed the simple question with an answer that was more complicated than she imagined.
“Both,” Tom said calmly and handed the padd back to her.
“Both?” She said trying to fathom the explanation behind that answer. Tom surprised her by answering the question.
“My mother was Merra Corrin, and my father was Owen Paris,”
“Was? Don’t you mean is?” Janeway corrected him.
“I said ‘was’ and that’s what I meant.” Janeway was treading on thin ice. She didn’t know anything about him and no right to presume anything. Why did she care anyway? He would be gone in twenty-four hours or so. “My mother is dead and my father….he’s out there, somewhere.”
“You don’t talk to him at all?” Janeway asked.
“You don’t know what happened do you?” Tom asked her and she shook head. “I haven’t seen him since I was four years old when he and my mother separated, actually she left him and took me with her.”
“Why did she do that?” Janeway asked sounding rather outraged.
Tom came to his mother’s defence. “Owen didn’t give her any other choice,” he said sternly. He remembered having conversations like this with his mother before she was killed. When he asked about his father she would tell him. When he was very small it would only be the bare essentials but as he grew Merra told Tommy more of what happened but never all of it. To get the entire story Tom had to go to Reigh.
“What did he do?” Janeway asked concerned that whatever it was had to be pretty horrible for a wife to feel so threatened as to leave and take her child.
“He didn’t mean to do it,” Tom said not thinking through everything that he was saying. He didn’t want Captain Janewy to think badly of his father. He knew his father was a well-respected Starfleet Admiral and he was not going to tarnish his hard earned reputation. “The Cardassians….they hurt him, and he couldn’t handle it,” Tom said softly and looked away.
Janeway didn’t speculate on what Tom meant. It was obviously something he didn’t want to discuss so she left it at that.
“I saw him once though,” Tom said looking at the ground.
“What did he say?” Janeway inquired. She had never heard Owen talk of his son to anyone after the day she had gone to his office. She had been in Admiral Paris’ office several times and had never seen Tom’s picture.
“He didn’t know who I was,” Tom smiled faintly before shrugging and looking back to Janeway. Any emotion she had just witnessed from him had been sealed away again. It looked like Tom was done with this conversation but she wasn’t.
“Tom, I know your father, in fact I have something of yours in my home in Indiana. A stuffed teddy bear.”
“Ibidy.” Tom provided the name. He saw the expression on Janeway’s face when she heard the name of Tom’s stuffed animal. “I was four.”
A small smile tugged at her lips as she imagined little Tommy Paris playing with ‘Ibidy’. “He misses you,” she said.
“I’ll bet he does,” Tom joked thinking she was referring to Ibidy.
“Your father misses you, Tommy,” Kathryn said and waited for his response curious as to what it would be.
“I know,” he said sadly.
At that instant the shield around his emotions seemed to falter and Janeway caught a true glimpse of the man Tom Paris was.
“I miss him too.”
End Part 8
I don’t think I’ll be putting anymore P/T stuff in here. Why? I don’t feel like it. More coming soon! Leave a review or email me! Thanks! firstname.lastname@example.org
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