Disclaimer: Oh come on, Paramount. You know you want to steal my fic.
VGR J/C P/T and every other pairing in fandom history
Rating: M™© for adult humor.
A/N: Written for Mixed Doubles at Anne's Rose Garden. A mysterious and powerful being kidnaps the crew. So I felt kinda spoofy, sue me.
Ah, a starship. A crew complement of one hundred fifty-three. Opportunities abound. I shall be entertained this day.
The ship jolted without warning and nearly tossed the bridge crew to the deck. Captain Janeway clutched at her command chair and called for shields.
"We're locked in some sort of tractor beam, Captain."
She was just about to order a hail when a large alien face appeared on the viewscreen. "I am E'elnats," he declared. "The mating behavior shall now begin."
"Excuse me?" Janeway rose from her seat.
"You shall pair off and perform mating behavior, or I shall destroy your ship."
"Not today." Janeway signalled to cut the audio, although the measure proved ineffective.
Tuvok stood at the tactical station. "It is possible that this alien possesses the capability to carry out his threat, Captain."
"I certainly do possess that capability," E'elnats said. His impression of Tuvok raised eyebrows.
The turbolift doors opened, and Seven made her entrance.
"That one!" alien cried with obvious glee. Then he pointed to Janeway. "And you. The two of you shall mate."
"I don't think so," Janeway muttered.
"That is not possible." Seven said. "We lack interlocking genitals."
Harry Kim started choking.
"You are visually pleasing together," E'elnats said. "I would like to see you perform mating behavior."
"We prefer to choose our own mates," Janeway said.
"And you would not choose the one with the large orbs?"
Tom Paris lost his valiant battle to keep from giggling.
E'elnats shifted his gaze to the helm. "Would you prefer this one? He is visually pleasing."
Janeway opened her mouth to protest, but found herself standing in her ready room with Tom Paris.
E'elnats appeared to be watching through the viewport. "Commence mating behavior," he ordered. "If you do not, I will destroy your ship."
"We will not perform for you," Janeway said, her voice low and dangerous. "Any mating behavior in which I engage will be with a partner of my choosing."
"Do you not find this one desirable?"
"Mister Paris is a very attractive man," Janeway answered. "However, he and I do not have that sort of relationship."
"I do not understand," E'elnats said. "Are not mating activities pleasurable to you?"
"That's not the point," Janeway explained. "That activity is about more than pleasure and physical attractiveness. It is about love."
"Do you not feel love for this one?"
"Not that kind of love."
"Bring in one with whom you share the appropriate variety of love. I wish to witness your mating."
"That is not going to happen," Janeway said.
"Then I will destroy your ship."
The ready room doors opened slowly as Chakotay and Tuvok strained to pry them apart.
"One of these, perhaps," E'elnats said. He pointed at Chakotay with a hand that passed easily through transparent aluminum. "I wish to see that one perform mating behavior with this one." His gaze fell on Tom.
"Oh no," Tom said. "That is certainly not going to happen."
"What's the matter, flyboy?" B'Elanna asked from the doorway, where she had been disassembling the keypad. "Not so funny now?"
"I wish to learn how you select your mates," E'elnats said. "I will give you one hour to pair off, and then you will explain your choices. If you do not comply, I will destroy your ship."
E'elnats, if he had actually been there, disappeared.
"Suggestions?" Janeway asked the assembled senior staff.
"Maybe those involved in relationships could explain their feelings," Tom suggested. "He might get the idea after listening to just a few of us."
"Or he might not," B'Elanna complained. "We could be stuck here for days and I don't particularly want to explain my feelings to someone who is holding us hostage."
"I agree," Chakotay said. "Give him an inch, he's likely to take a parsec."
"We might be able to remodulate the shield harmonics to disrupt his tractor beam," Harry said. "But we'd need to distract him."
"So we're back to parading our personal lives for his amusement?" B'Elanna asked.
"Not necessarily," Tuvok said. "I could mind meld with him and -- "
"No," Janeway said. "We don't know enough about him. It could be dangerous. Besides, I'm not sure what we're seeing is real. It may be a holographic projection."
"He certainly had no trouble passing through the viewport," Tom said. "If he's real, he's non-corporeal."
"Great," B'Elanna muttered. "A pervert ghost."
"Or a voyeuristic hologram," Tom said.
"Wouldn't be the first one." B'Elanna shot a look at the Doctor.
He straightend in his seat. "I take offense to that! I'm a doctor, not a voyeur."
"People, please," Chakotay said. "We need a plan."
"You," E'elnats said to B'Elanna. "You love this one?"
B'Elanna looked at Tom. "I do. If you expect me to explain why, however, I have to admit I'm not entirely sure myself. It's complicated. Love isn't something you can draw out as a blueprint and study."
"And you love her?" E'elnats asked Tom.
"Yes, very much. I love her fire and passion. I love the vulnerability she hides beneath her temper. When she first told me that she loved me, I was so happy. It was like life was finally complete."
"And your mating behavior?" E'elnats asked. "Do you find it pleasurable."
Tom grinned. "You have no idea."
"Say any more," B'Elanna muttered. "And you won't have any idea for a very long time."
Harry Kim tapped frantically at his console. "It's not working Captain. I need at least ten more minutes."
Janeway sighed and her gaze fell upon the ready room doors. "Who else can we send in there?"
"Megan Delaney and Chell?" Chakotay asked.
"They took their turn three couples ago." Janeway consulted the crew manifest. "Most of the crew has taken a turn. Even Mortimer Harren. Why didn't you tell me he was seeing Mariah Henley?"
"I thought you knew," Chakotay said. "I guess we have little choice."
"To take a turn ourselves."
"But Chakotay," Janeway protested. "We aren't in a relationship."
"I didn't suggest that we go together," he said. "But now that you mention it..."
"Let's do it," she said.
E'elnats maintained the illusion of hovering outside the ready room viewport. He welcomed them when they entered.
"So why do you love him?
"The commander and I do not have that sort of relationship," Janeway said. "We are colleagues, and friends."
"I might have believed that before," E'elnats said. "But now that I better understand your culture, I know that you do not speak the truth. You feel more than friendship."
"Sometimes," Chakotay said, "it is not enough to feel a certain way. The timing must be appropriate as well."
"You love her very much," E'elnats said. "I can see that. What else could matter as much as that?"
Janeway tried to explain about Starfleet protocol, and the reasons to obey certain parameters. She tried to explain how only friendship was possible between them, at least in the Delta Quadrant. Yet even to her own ears, it made little sense.
"Why do you love this woman?" E'elnats asked Chakotay. "She is very pretty, but highly illogical."
"I don't love her because she is pretty." Chakotay spoke softly. "I love her because she is Kathryn."
Janeway turned and studied his face. "I love you too, Chakotay."
He stared at her, unmoving, as she stepped closer and wrapped her arms around him. She stretched up and kissed him softly.
E'elnats smiled. "Now was that so hard? Your ship is now free to go."
Star Trek™©, Star Trek: The Next Generation™©, Star Trek: Voyager™© and related properties exist as Registered Trademarks of Paramount Pictures. No copyright infringement intended. No profits made here. © Spiletta42, August 2003.