Star Trek - Voyager: Off Duty (MF,bond)
by L.R. Bowen

"Not *here*, B'Elanna!"

Chakotay groaned in frustration and helpless arousal as the beautiful Chief Engineer rubbed her breasts against his back and squeezed both hands over his groin. He heard voices just on the other side of the thin partition. B'Elanna had pushed him inside the cramped serviceway without a moment's notice.

"We're on duty, and someone is going to come looking for us in a very short time," he warned.

"Fine, let 'em look. This won't take long," she giggled against his nape. He felt her nip the loose skin and dart her warm tongue over the tingling spot. His cock already anticipated her, stirring with life.

"That's the problem, B'Elanna. I'd like to have a leisurely evening with you some time. I'll make love to you all night long if you'll only let me. This quick-and-dirty in a Jeffries tube really isn't my style."

"Oh, but you do it with style anyway," she purred. Slipping her hands into his uniform, she tickled her fingers over his chest and pinched his nipples through his shirt. A chill of firing nerve-ends flowed down his body and hardened his cock to full rigidity. "I never noticed that you disliked it all that much. Why, that time in the dining room when --"

"Don't remind me," Chakotay pleaded. "I was waiting every minute for Neelix to walk in and find us. I'd never live that down -- he has no idea how to keep his mouth shut."

"I can just hear him: 'Oh, Captain, you'd never believe what was going on a few hours ago right here on your breakfast table.'" B'Elanna giggled again and unfastened Chakotay's pants. He surged into her waiting hand.

"I don't even want to think about the captain's opinion of our little arrangement."

"You mean, the reason I'm feeling so good these days? Why should she care? It's none of her business as long as we do our jobs well. Now shut up and kiss me."

She wriggled around in the tight space to face him and pulled his head down to her. Chakotay gave up fighting his arousal; their lips met and opened against each other. B'Elanna never liked to spend much time on preliminary caresses, but she let him kiss her slowly, subtly, stimulating her sensitive inner lips with leisurely strokes of his tongue. His breath hummed deep in his throat as he smoothed his hands in firm circles against her shoulder blades.

She liked his kisses well enough, but she preferred to progress as rapidly to fucking as she could persuade him. The feel of his big cock ramming between her thighs always brought her to orgasm quickly and repeatedly. Why he claimed not to share her enthusiasm for quick and dirty, as he put it, she really couldn't tell. But if she could get him cornered, he never disappointed her. B'Elanna squirmed out of her jumpsuit and straddled Chakotay as he half-lay against the slope of the tube. He
enveloped her lovely dark-tipped breasts in his large palms.

"Do it to me," she breathed shakily. "I want to have all of you inside me. You make me feel so good, I want to scream."

"Don't, if you can possibly help it. I think your whole staff has their ears to the wall." Chakotay stroked her curving sides, then tested her readiness with two fingers. She was nearly dripping. The speed of her responses amazed him, but he wanted time to really make love to her, to worship her slim, energetic body with his own. She rarely allowed him the chance. Right now, though, he had better give her what she wanted before the engineering staff began to wonder why the senior officers had vanished. Perhaps later, when they were off duty, he could slow her down a little, make her enjoy herself more fully.

Chakotay seized her hips and drove himself upward, impaling his stiff cock deep into her wet sheath. Her muscles clenched around him, holding him firm while B'Elanna gritted her teeth in the effort not to howl wildly. Strangled whimpers of passion seeped out between her tight jaws.

"Goddess, Chakotay, I always seem to forget how well you fill my pussy," she whispered fiercely through her teeth. "Maybe that's why I need you to remind me so often." His pulsing hardness remained still inside her. B'Elanna could not sit entirely upright because of the low ceiling, but her
hips began to undulate, her soft, slick folds enveloping and stroking his shaft. She sought out the deepest pressure, pushing herself down as far as possible to feel him bumping her cervix. The hair at his groin became wet with her juices.

In less than a minute, she sensed the fluttering beginnings of her climax and clenched her jaw again to avoid crying out. The shuddering, rippling wave of tension and release built rapidly at her body's core. She came hard, falling forward onto Chakotay's broad chest and plunging wildly up and down on him.

He had barely moved at all except as necessary to stay inside her. From experience, he knew that she needed to physically exhaust herself with multiple orgasms before any caresses of his would make much impression on her. Although he was able to control himself well, from a combination of mental discipline and frequent release, if he participated much at this point she would rapidly excite him beyond his ability to hold himself back.

His lips tightened with his effort to keep relatively still. B'Elanna's uninhibited enjoyment and hunger for sex aroused him as much as did her slender, muscular body. Chakotay could remember only dimly at that moment when he had felt as much passion for a woman. He sighed inwardly, recalling
people and places a long time ago -- and very far away. Had anyone ever been as far away from his past?

B'Elanna was coming again. The light in the tube was dim, but he could see her features contorting, suppressed growls escaping her full, panting lips. Her small high breasts quivered as he began to move more energetically. Their mutual rhythm drove his cock deep into her heated interior, then withdrew it except for the head as she rose on her knees above him. Every time she plunged down onto him again she let out a long moaning breath.

Her fingernails were piercing into the skin of his shoulders, even through the material of his uniform. Despite the discomfort, heat shuddered through him, twitching his features intermittently with intense snarls of gratified desire.

B'Elanna looked as if she was losing control, tossing her hair wildly in his face and twisting her body; Chakotay decided to let go of himself and finish before she kicked a hole in the bulkhead and set off a Red Alert. Well, she had wanted it quick. He arched his back up to her, kneading her
breasts and running his thumbs over her hard nipples.

Around her fourth or fifth orgasm, she neglected to suppress her cries. The voices outside paused for a moment, then resumed and moved away. Chakotay clamped one hand over her mouth and shushed her. She paid little attention.

The next time she came, she bit his palm, forcing him into a hiss of surprised pain. He was never going to get used to her penchant for using her teeth and nails during sex. The Klingon heritage she found so troublesome burst out without inhibition when she was thoroughly excited. Chakotay wondered what her father had done to avoid being eaten alive by B'Elanna's full-blooded Klingon mother. His mind began to run on a path he found so intriguing that he forgot to keep himself quiet as he climaxed.

The throaty roar of his release still echoing in his ears, he helped B'Elanna get dressed and smoothed her lush mane of hair. His own short cut showed little disturbance despite his exertions.

"Tomorrow night, all right?" he whispered to her while she peered out of the hatch. "Come to the holodeck; I've got something special planned."

"Sure, whatever. I'll go on all the romantic walks you like for that kind of fucking," she replied with a voluptuous smile. "I assigned all my holodeck allotments to you, by the way, since you seem to get a kick out of the thing. Have fun." She gave his genitals a quick squeeze by way of farewell and slipped out when no one was passing. He followed after a decent interval.

The hatch opened into a corridor just off the main Engineering area. He had meant to get some reports on the Voyager's energy status before B'Elanna dragged him off. Chakotay strode purposefully between the consoles to the station he wanted, noting with chagrin that several technicians were attending a little too closely to their work as he passed. One young man caught his eye and to his utter astonishment winked with perfect solemnity.

"Yes, Ensign, what is it?" Chakotay barked.

"Nothing, sir. Nice day for it, sir," the man replied, and returned to adjusting field coils. Chakotay finished what he had come to do as quickly as he could and headed for the turbolift. He had to wait for a moment for the doors to open, and heard a quiet comment behind him. "If that's why the
Chief's so sweet and reasonable lately, more power to him."

"I'm just glad it's not me," said someone else. Chakotay stepped thankfully into the turbolift. He wasn't given to blushing, luckily.

Captain Janeway turned around as he moved up to his seat on the bridge. "Oh, there you are, Commander. Let's see it."

"What?" he said faintly, his thoughts still occupied with B'Elanna.

"The energy report, Commander. You did get it, didn't you?" Kathryn Janeway put out her hand and smiled, amused at his unusual absence of mind. Chakotay gave her the little padd of readouts and sat down, musing.

The captain pored over the data and walked to the engineering station to talk to the duty officer. Leaning over the console, she handed him the padd. Chakotay saw a slender wisp of her glorious chestnut hair slip from its moorings and travel down her strong cheekbone. She flicked it back
casually with a quick gesture of her long, tapered hand.

Chakotay made an effort and attended to his duty efficiently for the rest of his shift. He spent the evening writing his holodeck program for the next night while eating one of Neelix's odd but tasty stews. Kes, studying medical texts at the next table, smiled at him mysteriously.

He wondered if she could pick up on his emotions; they were certainly strong enough. Her postcognitive abilities had already impressed him, but no one knew, including her, precisely what mental abilities she had or might develop.

As soon as he was satisfied with his scenario, he went to bed early. He was going to need his strength.

* * *

"Ready, B'Elanna? I'll meet you in the holodeck at 1900 hours. The password is Mountaintop. And please, don't wear your uniform."

"That's easy. Should I wear anything at all?" she replied with a grin he could almost see over the commlink.

"Comfortable civilian clothes will do just fine," he answered with an inward smile. "See you shortly." Chakotay signed off and finished the crew assignment roster for the week before he rose from his First Officer's chair. Just time for a quick bite to eat after he went off duty.

Janeway noticed his air of quiet anticipation as he passed her with a nod. Well, I hope he has a good time, she thought. Sometimes he seems a bit too serious about life. It's a failing we share. She glanced at her chronometer: four hours before she planned to stop work. Pressing a button on her console, she said, "Neelix, bring me up a plate, if you would. I've got a lot to do tonight."

* * *

B'Elanna Torres stood in front of the massive door to the holodeck. She was dressed in a loose tunic and close-fitting tights, borrowed from Kes, (who had asked her out of the blue if she would like something new to wear) with sturdy shoes. "Mountaintop" had sounded like a bit of a hike. One
could never be sure what Chakotay would come up with in the way of holodeck programs, except that they usually included long walks and a lot of scenery. One week it would be a sparkling white beach, blazing with sunlight on the turquoise water. The next would be a dark green jungle, warm and damp,
echoing with strange bird calls and rustles in the undergrowth. That one had aroused her hunting instincts, spurring her to search for animals down the wandering pathways, sniffing for scent-traces.

"You're supposed to *enjoy* them, not * kill* them," he had said in exasperation. "Most of them are only sound effects, anyway."

"Mountaintop," she said to the door, and the computer voice replied, "Privacy lock disengaged."

The door slid back, and Chakotay said, "Welcome." He was crouching by a fire set in a ring of stones, barely illuminating the darkness. His strong features flickered in and out of visibility as the fire danced in gusting winds. B'Elanna could make out the outline of craggy peaks against a dim, starlit sky. "Come in and shut the door," he urged. "Your eyes will adjust in a minute." Her feet crunched on sand and pine needles as she stepped forward and the door vanished behind her.

The air swirled chill around her, ruffling her hair and clothes. Low in the sky behind her, a full moon rose slowly from another huge range far distant in the darkness. It loomed enormous and yellow as she turned to look at it, silhouetting the sharp pinnacles against its lower limb. She shivered.

"Come over to the fire, it will warm you up before the walk," Chakotay murmured in her ear. B'Elanna jumped, not having heard him approach. The soft leather moccasins he wore made almost no sound as he took her arm and led her into the circle of dancing light.

He crouched down again and stared into the flames. His dark, half-hooded eyes seemed dreamy and unfocused, but bright with reflected fire. One finger drew designs in the sand, and his sculpted lips moved softly with unheard chants. For once she was disinclined to interrupt his meditations, watching him with a little awe for his unhurried serenity.

Although his calm centeredness formed a great deal of his personality, almost nothing of it had rubbed off on her throughout their long acquaintance. She still spoke too quickly, moved too fast, flew off the handle at provocations he did not even notice. She felt a little perverse pleasure in behaving according to her instincts, so different from his. Still, he commanded her respect, her desire -- anything more?

"The moon has risen. Let's go," he said, standing. Her adjusted eyes took in a loose white shirt, decorated with bands of embroidery across the shoulders. An opening down the front revealed a little of his deep chest. His long legs were encased in fringed and beaded deerskin leggings. The shirt, sashed at the waist with a woven belt, fell to mid-thigh, concealing his hips. He looked at her with his slow, closed-lipped smile, sending a rolling wave of warmth through her body that had nothing to do with the fire.

Lead on, she thought. I'd follow that smile anywhere.

"What is this, anyway?" she asked as they picked their way along a narrow ridgetop path by the pale light of the moon. A second, smaller moon inched its way over the horizon behind the first.

"Well, it has some elements of the Colorado Rockies, but it's mostly a place about a hundred miles from where I was born. My ancestors found many sacred sites in these mountains when they arrived from Earth. I used to come here often to listen to the trees and feel the bones of the planet under my feet."

"You mean the rocks?"

He turned and grinned at her, the white flash of his teeth just visible in the moonlight. "What else?"

They clambered over granite boulders, climbed sliding talus slopes, inched down rocky faces feeling for footholds. The two moons provided just enough light to navigate by, but she had to pay close attention to the path. B'Elanna knew that the room was only part of one deck in size, that they
were walking in circles, but the program's shifting illusion defied detection.

The exercise warmed her, forced her heart to pump hard and her lungs to labor in the thin air. Chakotay strode ahead of her by a few paces, occasionally offering a hand up or simply glancing back to see how she was doing. Once or twice he stopped, listening to the hoot of an owl or silently holding out one hand to indicate a little herd of elk wandering and grazing at the edge of a meadow.

After an hour or so, they entered a mountain park, a level, grassy enclosure between two high ridges dotted with trees.

"Are we there yet?" asked B'Elanna a bit ruefully. She estimated that they had walked about three miles at a good pace, not counting up and down.

"Not far," Chakotay answered. "See, about a hundred meters ahead."

At the far end of the park, a little hut emerged out of the darkness, half concealed with black pines. It formed a dome less than two meters high, made of skins lashed over a framework of branches.

"This isn't that sweat lodge one again, is it?" asked B'Elanna suspiciously. "My hair stunk of burning leaves for days."

"Sage and sacred tobacco," he corrected, "but no, this isn't a sweat lodge, not in that sense, at least."

He held up the door flap for her to enter. There wasn't much headroom for him, but she could easily stand upright near the center of the hut. A stone lamp, really just a shallow dish of oil with several grass wicks, flickered softly near one wall. The dim golden light glowed on their faces,
flushed from exertion and the chilly air. Furs and pads of springy dried moss covered the floor. Inside, the temperature was perfectly warm, gently heated by the lamp.

Chakotay stooped and dipped water from a painted bowl. He handed the hollow gourd to B'Elanna, who drank gratefully and plopped down on the soft floor.

"Ooh, this is pretty cosy," she admitted, stroking a soft grey fur. "I suppose these aren't real."

Chakotay finished his own drink and chuckled at the slight feral edge to her voice. "Would you like them to be?"

"Yes, actually. I'd like you to have skinned and gutted everything in here with a stone knife and eaten all the meat raw. No, I take that back. I'd like to have helped you."

"Most of my ancestors ate a lot of corn and squash, B'Elanna."

"Some of them must have been hunters."

"Yes, some of them were hunters," he replied softly, the middle finger of his left hand absently tracing the blue lines on his temple. "Some of them were warriors."

"You *are* a warrior, Chakotay. You could cover a whole village of huts with Cardassian pelts --"

"Stop." His hand half-clenched into a claw as a twitch of anguish squeezed his eyes shut.

"You don't feel sorry for *Cardassians*!"

"I set out to defend my planet by any means necessary. If I had to kill Cardassians, or anyone else, so be it." He nearly shouted at her. "But I wouldn't rejoice over their dead bodies."

B'Elanna quivered with surprise and excitement. Chakotay so rarely lost his quiet gravity that she thrilled at his sudden passion. His height and mass, impressive enough at rest, loomed menacingly over her --

And then he relaxed back into himself. B'Elanna saw the fires damp down, the storm blow over without a strike. She was vaguely disappointed. Chakotay sat back down beside her and ran a hand through his hair.

"You should know me better than that, Torres," he said with a rueful smile. Neither of them said anything for a minute. The warm lamplight played gently over his thoughtful features. He turned and gazed over her delicate profile, her full lips and slightly tip-tilted nose. Only the high ridged forehead betrayed her Klingon blood.

Did his words ever make any impression on her fierce spirit? She looked contemplative; he had planned the hard walk to take the edge off her boundless energy. Would she accept gentleness from him, not try to provoke him into furious lust? He had told her he considered physical union a communion of spirits, and had held out his own as an offering. Had she ever done the same? Perhaps she had, and he had not recognized it. Perhaps they were too different ever to really accept the depths of each other's being. He tried to gentle her; she tried to draw out his anger, his violence, his pure animal hunger. Well, she had certainly succeeded at the latter. Chakotay didn't like to encourage that side of himself, but his body betrayed him every chance it had.

He shifted closer to her and stroked his hand down her back, slowly, slowly. B'Elanna started like a waking cat and arched her ridged spine to press against his palm. The soft material of her tunic rippled under his touch. He had better get her undressed in order to carry out his plan; he wouldn't want to ruin her clothes.

B'Elanna reached for Chakotay and lightly raked her nails across his chest. Her hands slipped inside his shirt at the open front. When his corded arms came around her lithe body, she dived her face into his throat and nipped at the junction of neck and shoulder. She could taste his salt, smell his musk and warmth. A growl of desire started deep in her belly.

His chest tensed under her hands, his heartbeat accelerating to a hard, rapid rhythm. He seemed agitated about something, but she didn't care what; she grabbed his face and kissed him fiercely, biting his lower lip. Suddenly he took the hem of her tunic and lifted it straight over her head.
B'Elanna pulled her arms out of the sleeves and sat revealed in only her skintight leggings. Her prominent dark nipples adorned her small, beautifully shaped breasts. Chakotay's hands went to the waistband of her leggings, but she was already stripping them off along with her shoes. Nude, she rolled over on the silky furs beneath her, then crouched and sprang at him. His sash unknotted easily and she tore his shirt off, eager to see his body.

The deerskin leggings he wore covered only his calves and thighs. Held up by a belt threaded through thong loops at their tops, they left the entire area of his groin and buttocks concealed only by a narrow breechcloth. This did nothing to hide his erection. B'Elanna hissed in delight at the sight of it, straining the material into a wonderfully prominent bulge. She licked her lips.

Then she was flat on her back, breathless, held with her wrists above her head in a powerful grip. Chakotay was fumbling among the floor coverings with his free hand. A strap whipped around one wrist, was fastened with a quick twist. He pulled her other hand to the side and repeated the operation with another strap.

Taken utterly by surprise, B'Elanna howled and yanked on her restraints. The soft leather gave a little, but it was firmly attached to the floor somehow. Chakotay rolled back with lightning speed, taking his weight off her chest. She tried to sit up, but he seized her right ankle and pushed
the furs aside, apparently looking for another concealed restraint. Her left foot shot out and smacked solidly into his ribcage.

"Son of a bitch! I'll have your balls on a stick!" she screamed furiously. Chakotay rocked back with the force of her blow, but strapped her ankle quickly and tried to catch the other as she lashed out with another kick. He dodged it adroitly and fell onto her leg, pinning it to the floor. The last strap fastened around her left ankle and he sat up, panting.

Infuriated at his satisfied smile, she cursed and thrashed against the furs, her muscles bulging with effort. His eyes darted to the stakes driven deep into the earthen floor that secured the ends of the straps. None of them budged. He had designed them to withstand twice her strength, knowing that he might be in severe jeopardy if she worked free too soon. Right now, she was angry enough to rip off any number of valuable parts. Before he was done, he hoped to have her much happier. If only he had not taken a tiger by the tail...

B'Elanna paused for breath in between insults to his ancestors, his personal hygiene, his intellectual accomplishments and his general trustworthiness. Chakotay noted wryly that she had nothing to say on his manhood or erotic abilities. He cast an appreciative eye over her glowing,
writhing nudity and waited patiently for her to calm down. After all, he had all night. There wasn't any rush.

* * *

Chakotay squatted between her spread feet, tantalizingly near but not touching her. The soft deerskin of his leggings stretched taut over his magnificent thighs. Just above the brief breechcloth, the fine blue lines on his stomach swirled and bent before diving below the belt. His eyes, glinting darkly in the lamplight, moved slowly over her straining body.

B'Elanna ran out of steam in the face of his quiet contemplation. Her tirade trailed off into outraged panting, then deep shaky breathing.

She opened her mouth to gulp oxygen, sensing something odd in her enforced immobility.

What was happening? Her situation turned upside down. It almost seemed that she stretched *herself* out, held *herself* captive. The straps were only an excuse. They seemed to imprison her body, but the real chains were in her mind, weighing her down, leading her along a narrow path. What lay
in wait if she were to step off of it into new territory?

Raising her head, she frowned in concentration. Chakotay met her puzzled look, divining her changing mood.

B'Elanna jerked half-heartedly on the restraints again. The tension in her outstretched arms and legs communicated itself throughout her body, causing her abdomen to ripple, her buttocks to clench, her hips to undulate. Every movement was arrested in her extremities, so that all her energy flowed to the core of her body and to her head. Unable to kick, or scratch, or to seize anything, she stared at the crisscross of lashed branches above her. The deep breaths shuddering her chest calmed and slowed.

Chakotay watched in awe. The movements of her spirit were so plain upon her face, in every tiny shift of her body, that he thought he saw clear through her flesh and bones. Light seemed to travel in little ripples under her skin. She was rolling her head slowly from side to side when he finally
touched her, almost afraid that her luminance would burn him.

He ran his hands from her feet along her sculpted calves and thighs gradually to her hips, repeated the motion, then stroked her fingers and palms, down her arms to her breasts. Her chest began to rise and fall more deeply, but B'Elanna didn't even look at him. She seemed to focus inside her own eyes, to use her sight for things unseen.

Chakotay circled her breasts, then framed her ribcage in his hands. His fingers ran under her torso and down to her buttocks. Lifting her hips, he crouched down to catch her scent, enticingly hot and complex. He gazed joyously at the lips of her vulva, their delicate, rippled edges shining with arousal. When he had looked long enough, he laid his face on her stomach, listened to the throb of her blood, then moved down through the triangle of dark hair to find her with his mouth.

The sweet-sour, salty taste of her poured over his tongue. He explored her crevices leisurely, listening to her little mews and gasps to guide him. So soft, so warm, so moist. Ordinarily she would have been growling and clawing at his hair, trying to move him up her body to plunge into her immediately. Instead she rolled her hips in a slow circle, allowing every surface to meet his lips. Chakotay flicked his tongue over her clitoris, teasing it out of its concealing hood. Her sounds changed to long sighing breaths. Gradually the movement of her hips ceased; she rested on his hands
and shuddered delicately with each exhalation. Something was gathering, gaining strength and clarity with every moment but paradoxically relaxing her body at the same time. It grew quickly into full focus and she groaned out loud, feeling it pressing within her. The sharpness, the clarity were
nearly unbearable. She called out from the depths of it, and climaxed harder than she ever had in her life. The orgasm lasted for an eternity.

Immediately afterwards, she could not bear the slightest touch. Chakotay seemed to know what had happened; he sat up and withdrew a little, crouching between her feet again, leaving her alone with her awakened knowledge.

After a few moments, B'Elanna felt an entirely new sensation begin in her body, somewhere around the region of her rapidly beating heart.

It grew and suffused her outwards from its origin, creeping down her arms and legs to her fingertips and toes. When it reached the top of her head, she let it fall back into the pillow of moss.

The sensation was awareness, awareness of every bone and fiber and cell of her body, mixed with anticipation and listening, waiting for what would be shown her next. Impatience played no part. The waiting seemed charged with excitement. Her eyes fell closed. She could feel every hair of every
pelt under her, every strand of moss, every vibration of the ship all around her. The very nebulae and stars sang to her. She might have been flying through space unassisted, freer than she had ever been.

When Chakotay moved, calling her back to her immediate surroundings, she was almost disappointed.

Not for long. He knelt between her thighs, spreading his hands out wide inches above her body. The fingers cupped and stroked the air, tracing the contours of her face, shoulders, arms, torso. He never touched her, but she felt him more keenly than ever before.

He moved in an arc, up one leg and down the other. The gestures had a sacramental quality to them, a laying on of hands or a blessing. Both of them breathed evenly, in absolute synchronization. When he had covered her entire body with his hands, he stood up slowly and divested himself of his remaining clothing. Each legging slid to the floor separately, then he unwrapped the breechcloth to reveal his genitals. Before her eyes, his penis filled with slow surges until it hovered rigid in front of him. She didn't want to move. Anything that she might do would break the spell. Who had cast it, Chakotay or herself?

He knelt between her legs again, placed his hands on each side of her head and lowered his face until it hovered just above hers. Repeating the gesture of his hands, he floated his lips over hers so close that his slow breaths entered her mouth. They remained motionless for a long time, not
touching physically, but melting together nevertheless, communing in some way indefinable to her without bodily form.

When she opened her eyes, he was smiling gently at her in wonder. Whatever had happened, he was not the sole author.

"She walks in beauty," he murmured. B'Elanna felt the expression on her own face, softer and more open than it had been since she was a very young child. Her eyes welled up and she sobbed, biting her lower lip in ecstatic anguish. She did not weep at the fleeting of the experience, but at the knowledge that it had been there all along, deep inside her, waiting.

Chakotay moved slightly and the straps fell away from her wrists and ankles. He sank into her embrace, and then into her body. They fell into the ancient rhythm, the rocking of the tides, the cycle of the stars. The pulse of life in the endless reaches of space.

* * *

"Where the hell is that First Officer of mine?" Janeway slapped her comm badge again in irritation."Chakotay!"

"The security readout indicates that Commander Chakotay is in his quarters," Tuvok said mildly.

"I doubt it, Mister. He's left his badge there before when he didn't want to be found." The captain sat back in her chair and frowned. This wasn't a matter of life and death, but she needed her senior officers to be on call all the time, not just when they found it convenient. She had a vague memory of his mentioning the holodeck to someone just before the end of his shift. "Tuvok, the bridge is yours. I need to stretch my legs anyway."

* * *

Janeway stood in front of the portal that B'Elanna had entered two hours before. "Computer, open the door."

"Privacy lock in operation. Please state password," the voice replied.

"Oh, good heavens..."

"Password incorrect. Please restate."

"Emergency override. Janeway, Kathryn, Captain." No, it wasn't an emergency, but she had been working for ten hours straight and felt a little testy.

"Emergency override confirmed." The door slid open to darkness.

She hadn't brought a hand light with her, but the moons were quite sufficient after a few minutes. The mountain park reminded her of somewhere she had been a long time ago. Not with Mark -- with that lieutenant commander, the one with the literary tastes and the receding hairline.

Now where was her errant officer? "Commander?" she called, startling a few elk grazing at the edge of the meadow. Hunting? She saw a dim shape among the trees that didn't seem natural. On approach, it proved to be a small round skin hut with a door flap. A thin yellow thread of light seeped out at the bottom. She cleared her throat loudly and stooped to pull the flap aside.

Janeway actually skipped a breath at the sight. They were asleep, Chakotay's head pillowed on B'Elanna's shoulder. He had one big arm curled over her breasts and one leg thrown between hers. Both the Chief Engineer and the First Officer were completely nude. His bronze skin shone like coppery gold in the flicker of the one remaining lamp wick. The musky smell of sex hung heavy in the warm escaping air.

The captain sank to her knees. Shock wasn't really the emotion uppermost in her mind. Something about the scene inspired respect, something ancient and elemental. She found herself smiling softly, watching the slow movements of breath, the flutter of eyelids in dreaming.

Well, what did she expect? They had probably been sleeping together a long time -- a pretty, vital girl like that, and a man who -- well, if she had been B'Elanna, she wouldn't have given him up so very easily either. Still, she was going to have to keep an eye on them, and probably have a word,
once she could think what to say. She let the flap fall.

* * *

Tuvok raised a questioning eyebrow at her when she regained the bridge. It took her a moment to recall what she had gone below to do; she replied as smoothly as she could, "Yes, I found him, but I saved the lecture for later." Tuvok nodded and attended to his security panel.

Janeway took her seat and pretended to study reports. She found herself staring fixedly at the floor, picturing over and over the gleaming, sweat-streaked bodies glowing in the lamplight. She hadn't registered that her First Officer had such a fine physique: strongly muscled, powerful. He wasn't much like Mark, who was ten years older and at least fifteen kilos lighter.

What was Mark doing right now? Contending with a houseful of puppies, no doubt. Janeway felt a keen pang of longing for his playful, intense lovemaking. He was such a good friend, and knew her every preference down to the ground, in bed or out. What fun it had been to teach him, too...

She sighed and went back to work.

After all, the captain reminded herself, she wasn't yet off duty.



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