Disclaimer: Paramount owns the rights to all the Voyager characters etc presented in this narrative. I’m only borrowing them for creative purposes and for the enjoyment of Star Trek fan fiction readers everywhere. No funds were made or exchanged in any way, so there is no reason to sue.

Code: J/7

Rating: NC-17, Beware!! There are depictions of rough sex, leading to injuries and may disturb or offend some readers. This story contains some scenes of graphic/explicit sex between two adult women. There is some violence, which could fall under the 'R' rating, but it is not excessive.

If any of the above disturbs you in any way or you are under 18 or if this is illegal where you live, please do not read! This is NOT for you.

Timeframe: Endgame never happened, Voyager has been in the Delta Quadrant for over 7 and a half years. However, the Doc has already taken care of Seven's fail safe problem.

Summary: Janeway takes full advantage of Seven's immaturity. Will they come to realize the truth in time to save their relationship? Will they be able to reconcile their differences while in the midst of a dangerous section of space?


Primal Relationship

 

by Scar

 

One late evening, Captain Kathryn Janeway visited Cargo Bay Two to talk with Seven of Nine, the former tertiary adjunct to unimatrix zero one and her Astrometrics Officer.

Yet this time, she wasn't here as the Captain and the discussion she wanted would not have anything to do with the ship or its crew. No, this conversation was going to be much more personal and private.

The honest truth was that the Captain was having difficulty with her growing attraction for a certain ex-borg drone. She admitted to wanting the young woman for years and although she had successfully managed to bottle up that longing, tucking it away into the deepest recesses of her being, the last few days her desire seemed to manifest itself with a vengeance. That growing ache deep in her loins coupled with years of forced abstinence made for one powerful attraction and some seriously unmet needs and desires.

Unsure as to what would precipitate this sudden awakening, she came to the conclusion that she had simply denied herself for far too long. Sex was a basic fundamental need. A physical manifestation of being with another human and she so wanted to be with Seven.

Standing before the beautiful form that regenerated in the Borg alcove, Kathryn knew what she wanted and that was a physical relationship.

Despite her fierce attraction, Seven was the logical choice for a variety of reasons. First of all, she was not in Starfleet although she was considered an honorary officer with no rank; she was in fact a citizen of the Federation having been born on the Tendara Colony.

By being onboard Voyager, a Federation Starfleet vessel, Seven was legally and lawfully under Captain Janeway's command. Starfleet recognized her as a civilian and technically, although not encouraged, it was not against regulations to have a relationship with onboard civilians as long as discretionary measures were utilized.

Content with that logical assessment, Janeway no longer needed to make up excuses to justify the action she was about to take.

Her mental restraint was weakening by the day and it was difficult to remain objective about her duties and mentally stable as Captain. She was tired of the erotic dreams when she was asleep and the constant fantasies while she was awake.

Basically, she was rapidly losing whatever willpower she had left to prevent this and… she didn't want to.

Janeway also considered very carefully how they would keep such a relationship quiet, because her crew would undoubtedly not accept such a union and her command could not afford that. She had to admit that she wasn't willing to give that up despite how much she wanted the other woman.

On the other hand, she wasn't willing to let go of this attraction either and why should she? It was not like she could avoid the other woman until they reached earth in say, 30 years or so. It was unavoidable as they constantly interacted with each other. Seven was in on senior staff meetings, she and her Captain played Velocity at least once a week and they often sculpted or painted in Master Da Vinci's studio. The worst of it was that anytime Seven felt confused about something, she would visit Janeway in her quarters late at night for a philosophical discussion. Imagine having that beautiful luscious body so close and in such a private setting and not being able to act on it! Janeway took many cold showers.

The auburn haired woman smirked to herself. She was having not so innocent thoughts as she let her eyes travel down the drone's firm tall body. She has no idea how beautiful she is. What god has given her despite the borg's efforts to destroy her humanity. It is so apparent how human she is with that biosuit on. I probably wouldn't be having this problem if the Doctor managed a less revealing suit. Oh hell, I know I still would! I love to look at her… always have since that Silver suit…

Janeway was certain the blonde was attracted to her, but just how much was the key. She swore Seven had flirted with her a few times, yet might not be at the stage to recognize all of the signals her body generated and subsequently aware of what she did.

Janeway initially had intended to wait for the Borg to come around. Unfortunately, Seven's development was slow at best. The young woman would take one step forward and then two steps back. Kathryn didn't want to wait for her budding humanity to assert itself. It could take years before that occurred, therefore, Janeway would have to expedite matters now. The only question remaining was… if Seven was willing to try a physical relationship, whether she understood the ramifications or not.

Kathryn had to find out one way or the another.

She swallowed despite the rawness of her dry throat. Feeling the lust growing in her loins, a throbbing ache she had yet to appease, Janeway took in a deep breath to calm herself.

Shaking her head to cast the libidinous thoughts aside for now, Janeway steeled herself for the task ahead and keyed in the sequence to shutdown the current regeneration cycle.

"WARNING! REGENERATION CYCLE INCOMPLETE."

Beautiful ice blue eyes fluttered open and looked around spotting her visitor. She moved out of the borg alcove and down the dais. "Captain."

"Seven," Janeway looked at her with keen blue eyes.

Seven noticed the intensity of her Captain's gaze right away. "Is there a problem, Captain?"

"Yes," she replied, but Janeway's vocal cords hesitated to continue. Maybe it would be easier to just show her. Without a second thought, Janeway leaned in and pressed her lips to Seven's easily noting with satisfaction the gasp of surprise from the other woman. She caressed them with her lower lip moving delicately between the gap of Seven's full lips. She pressed lightly into the touch before widening her lips to cover the other woman's mouth completely and sensually before breaking away to look into wide, stunned eyes.

Seven just stared at her completely confounded, but to Janeway's credit the pupils had dilated severely and her nose flared presumably in equal parts arousal and need for oxygen. Of course some of it could have been nerves as this action by her friend and superior had to be unexpected to say the least for the young woman. Janeway knew regardless of what Seven said that she was physically attracted to her.

"C-Cap-tain?" Seven's stumbled verbally. She reached up with a finger to touch her own lips, most likely considering the action and how it affected her, which it clearly did to some degree.

"I am attracted to you, Seven." Janeway continued to gaze alluringly into the beautiful blue eyes. "…And I was wondering if you felt the same." Here was the crossroad that determined if she had a prayer with the taller woman or if she was dreaming like so many others onboard Voyager.

"Captain, I…" Seven appeared confused. "I am not sure I understand."

"I am attracted to you… physically. Do you feel the same?" Janeway asked pointedly trying not to sound desperate.

Seven squinted considering her words, suddenly feeling nervous. "Are you referring to sexual attraction Captain?"

Seven was always too blunt. But she's right on the money, Janeway thought. "Yes, but call me Kathryn for the duration of this conversation ok?" It was disconcerting to Janeway to be called Captain while talking about sex in regards to her personal life.

"Are you asking me if I am in love with you?"

That caught the Captain off guard. "Well, no Seven. I don't expect that. I--"

"Are you in love with me Captain?" Seven interrupted, her mind working feverishly to understand the Captain's actions.

"Uh, Seven, it's a little soon for that kind of… emotion…" Janeway seemed at a loss. She did not want to explain falling in love to Seven, she just wanted some companionship.

"Is that not the purpose of copulation?"

"Yes, but-- Seven are you or are you not attracted to me?" Janeway asked with a little impatience in her tone, which Seven did not seem to notice.

Seven tilted her head inquisitively. "I believe so, Cap--Kathryn, but I do not know if I can reciprocate properly. I… I am still new to emotions."

"Don't worry about that," Janeway downplayed her worries. "Just tell me, did you enjoy the kiss?"

Seven was embarrassed by the truth. Her eyes shifted in considering how to answer. "I would be dishonest if I said I did not find the experience pleasurable, but I am uncertain as to why."

"That's ok." Janeway reassured her. "I assume you are familiar with dating?"

"Yes, but the last one I participated in ended badly. I… damaged Lt. Chapman." Concern showed on her face.

Janeway tried to hide her smirk. "I heard about that Seven. I know it was an accident and you don't have to worry about that because we're not going to be dancing."

"That is wise Kathryn."

"How about you meet me in my quarters at 19:00 hours, and we can discuss this further, ok?"

"Acceptable."

 

*****

 

That evening, Janeway had Seven over to her quarters for a light dinner and conversation. It went very well, the young woman was quite receptive to starting a private relationship with her Captain.

The rules were outlined. Janeway explained that she had to keep it quiet. Janeway made sure that Seven understood, that as Captain the ship always came first. A part of Janeway always belonged to Voyager and her crew. Seven already understood that and easily agreed.

Finishing their conversation, Janeway couldn't resist kissing the beautiful woman again. She tried to tell herself that she hadn't intended to move so fast, but Janeway could not resist what was so freely offered. Despite a lingering headache from the stress of the day and the obvious guilt she would feel later, Kathryn seduced Seven that evening.

Janeway wound up on her bed having sex with the young woman who was very nervous yet eager to please and accommodate her Captain. The older woman led the way in this new territory for both of them and showed Seven things she could not learn from a database.

Seven's newness was refreshing and although she was apprehensive at first, her knowledge of the sexual practices of thousands of species came in handy and more than made up for her inexperience in Janeway's mind. Once led to the fruits of the body, the blonde became quite animated during their encounter and could not help but take and consume what was before her, what she had never had before.

They made love on and off for a few hours during that first night, resting in-between bouts of heated intercourse. It was incredible for Janeway as the orgasms tore through her, allowing the older woman to release so much pent up energy.

My God, she thought, seven years without real companionship! The hologram or the fling she had when the entire crew had their memories altered didn't count because it wasn't real. This was. She knew who she was and whom she wanted in her bed every night.

Having the blonde in Kathryn's bed for the evening completely nude for her hot eyes to roam over sparked Janeway's lust into overdrive as she took charge of Seven's body again and again. The younger woman was readily compliant and surprisingly passionate as they brought each other to the apex more times than Kathryn could count until exhausted they finally fell asleep.

The next morning, Janeway awoke Seven by shaking her vigorously at around 5:30 am. She was startled awake wondering what the emergency was until Janeway reiterated their need for absolute privacy. The redhead didn't want anyone seeing Seven leave her quarters so she figured early morning was the best time to vacate her quarters.

Seven agreed leaving quietly and discreetly for her Captain's sake. It didn't faze her at the time to be kicked out so unscrupulously because her mind was in cloud nine. Seven was so elated at the feelings and sensations that flooded through her. She could never remember ever feeling better physically or emotionally in her whole life. Of course, she knew what happened during sexual intercourse, but the data could never have prepared her for the actual experience that Kathryn gave to her.

Kathryn, my partner, lover and mate. Unbeknownst to Seven's conscious mind, her heart rose Kathryn Janeway to adulation status that first evening of passion.

 

'*****

 

The next few days were difficult for the Captain as the sexual act left her with strong feelings of guilt.

Janeway successfully avoided the young woman for a few days. When Seven came to her late at night as agreed, the Captain said she was too tired for company. After three days of the same excuse, Seven began to doubt Janeway's sincerity.

Janeway could tell that she was the cause of Seven's distress. The sudden withdrawal perplexed the younger woman, the confusion and hurt noticeable even on her stoic features and this awareness bothered the Captain. Janeway knew she had taken advantage of the woman and that was inexcusable, despite what she needed physically. Just because she was horny and lonely did not give her the right to seduce the naïve young woman, but that's exactly what she did and backing out was difficult, in not impossible, at this point.

Right when Seven was going to demand an explanation, Janeway had relented on the fourth evening not being able to resist the Borg's physical presence any longer. Kathryn had wanted the young woman in the worst way.

The Captain admitted to herself that Seven had acted more professionally than she did. Janeway found herself distracted by the borg's presence even more so now that they had consummated. Wondering how she could have gotten so lustful in such a short time period, she mulled the situation over.

Her mind literally started warring within itself.

I don't love her, she forcefully told herself. I'm simply infatuated with her. She is a rather lovely woman and oh so pure. Besides, I'm the Captain. I'm not allowed that luxury. It's too dangerous for me, for her and for my crew.

The little voice in her head acting as her conscious answered her.

So, because of your repressed needs and long withheld desires, you simply took advantage of her, right? This thought baited her.

What? No, it was consensual. I gave her time to back out.

You utilized your experience and charm to your advantage!

She wanted it as well! I only gave in to it...

You instigated it. She would not have even realized her attraction if you had not forced her to.

I did not force her! I asked her how she felt. She decided to give into it, something she might not have done if I had not asked. It could have taken years for her to realize her attraction to me.

That's a fine excuse, but that doesn't mean she's ready for it. You know she trusts you explicitly, she could have given in to sex to not disappoint you.

Yes, she does trust me, but I could never force her to do anything she didn't want to. And even if I could, I'm no match for her. She's significantly strong than me.

Physically and intellectually you are correct, but emotionally? She is deficient in this and relies on you implicitly. You know you have a strong influence on her in that area.

So what, If I have some influence on her? I'm teaching her to embrace her humanity. Someone has to! If she is willing and able, then who am I to deny her that?

You don't know how this will affect her! What if it has more emotional repercussions for her than even she realizes?

That's unlikely. It will most likely end up as research in some database with no emotional resonance at all.

You don't know that. You should end this, before you risk hurting her deeply.

You might be right, but this is stronger than I am… Besides, assuming that she is so emotionally endowed then dumping her could prove more harmful than good. She might not understand the reasons behind it.

On the other hand, it might not bother her at all. She might move on easily after a brief period of confusion, leaving you all alone with your lust and guilt. You don't want to admit that you need her emotionally as well, so you cover it up using sex as a tool, a mere act of pleasure, not making love in the truest sense. You take pleasure in her body and ignore her emotional needs. However, even you cannot be unaffected forever. The longer the relationship continues, the harder it will be to deny--.

"No!" Janeway slammed her hand down on the tempered glass of her Ready Room desk. She looked up, hoping no one heard her from the nearby Bridge.

There is nothing to deny.

 

*****

 

One month later…

Kathryn knew that she hadn't exactly been treating Seven as the young woman deserved, since they consummated their relationship into a physical one. Janeway kept denying that spark that every now and then flooded her heart. There was fear for some reason and Janeway didn't know how to get over it in order to move forward. Seven hadn't complained or anything, but Janeway knew she was holding back from her. Holding part of her heart and soul back in case she got hurt or something. There was something very odd about the whole situation.

The physicality was marvelous and wonderful. She felt that Seven gave her all in bed and beyond in their relationship, but emotionally Kathryn held back unsure of herself for some odd reason.

As Janeway walked into her quarters she saw a table with candles lit and two dinner plates. Smiling to herself, Kathryn tossed the top part of her uniform off and eyed Seven from behind the counter as she removed her boots.

"Kathryn," Seven greeted with a slight smile.

"How did you get in my quarters?" Janeway asked not unkindly.

"Like I always do Kathryn. Discreetly by using a site to site transport."

"Ah, I hope you used borg encryption codes to mask an internal transport?"

"Yes."

"Even so, Tuvok is going to notice one of these days."

"I could arrive here walking through the corridors of deck 3."

"Someone might spot you. That might work at 05:00, but it won't during the evening shift."

Seven assumed such a response, eyeing her mate speculatively. "Do you wish for me to… stop visiting?"

"I didn't say that." A spark lit up in Janeway's deep blue eyes.

"Good," she remarked wondering how far Kathryn would go to be secretive about their evening rendezvous. "You would not want to have sex in the Cargo bay, it would not be… comfortable."

Janeway was put off by the dry remark. "Is there something you want to say, Seven?"

"Regarding?" Seven glanced at Janeway.

"Us."

"What would be the point. You have made everything quite clear. There is no relationship without complete secrecy." Seven knew this topic would prove futile.

"Exactly," Janeway agreed, refusing to give the topic any more time. "Dinner smells lovely." She commented changing the subject.

"Thank you. I hope you're hungry."

"Oh yes."

Seven turned away to get some wine, missing the glint in Kathryn's eyes and the seductive look that followed her.

"Very much so."

The blonde brought back a fine wine, La Chateau Laflour and poured two glasses. Janeway quickly snatched it up, gulping a good portion of it, then threw her head back to relish the taste.

"Are you tired, Kathryn?" Seven asked.

"A little." She admitted. "It was a hectic day, running into that ion storm. I spent a lot of time helping B'Elanna repair EPS conduits, anodyne relays and replacing damaged gel packs."

"Astrometrics received some damage as well. I was occupied for 3.2 hours trying to correct the proper relays and replace circuit boards." Seven stated.

"Well at least it wasn't a boring day." She said lifting her glass.

"True." Seven agreed. "You should probably eat something before finishing that wine, Kathryn."

"Don't worry, I can hold my liquor."

Seven sat down and began eating her steamed chicken, rice and corn, while Kathryn poured herself another glass of wine.

Seven had hoped for a more romantic evening where they could take things slowly, but the way Kathryn was staring at her… that was not likely to happen... again. Kathryn hardly ever took things slowly, especially intimacy. Seven wondered briefly how sex would be if both of them were drunk. Intrigued, she drank her wine more vigorously in anticipation of testing her theory.

"Kathryn, it's difficult to consume food with you staring at me like that."

"Me… staring?" Janeway teased. "Maybe I'm just not hungry for food." She enticed through a thick raspy voice.

Seven was right in the middle of bringing a fork full of chicken to her mouth when the statement hit her. Her breathing increased exponentially and her adrenaline coursed through her at warp speed. She sighed putting her utensil down. "You are incorrigible." She said slightly annoyed, slightly amused, but incredibly turned on. Seven gulped the remaining amount of her wine, but she was already feeling the blurry effects on her optical node, the borg implant that controlled the vision in her left eye.

She leaned her elbows on the dinner table, steepling her hands together. "Be careful what you wish for Kathryn." Seven said in a low sultry voice. "It might come true."

That sent Janeway over the edge. She finished her wine smiled wickedly and dragged Seven to the bedroom. The ex-borg sighed, but complied readily her plans for a slow romantic evening going up in smoke as they arrived at the base of the Captain's bed.

Apparently as tired as the Captain was, she wasn't too tired for sex, Seven thought amused.

Although Kathryn was an excellent lover, Seven noted a steady increase in how much they made love over the past month, the frequency, duration and the pace. Every evening Seven could stop by, Janeway would initiate intimacy, often well into the night only stopping to rest for a few minutes in-between sessions before depleted she finally fell asleep well satiated.

Although, Seven enjoyed the fervor, Janeway became almost animalistic in her approach to having the blonde's body. A few bruises did not bother Seven as her nanoprobes would easily take care of the problem, yet she could not deny that Kathryn's constant need to copulate was starting to wear the younger woman down.

Seven just figured it was probably a normal phase for humans going through a courtship ritual and that perhaps, Janeway was not aware that Seven's Borg enhanced strength was more brute than endurance. Seven was still 83% human and eventually would tire from any prolonged energetic activity.

Either way, she would not say anything unless it became a serious problem for her.

Looking into the wild eyes of her partner, Seven was humbled and exasperated by Janeway's ability to outdo her. Seven was younger, stronger and faster, yet it did not matter in the slightest when those skills were utilized in making love. Seven could only marvel at the older woman's energy level and despite having to endure soreness and longer regeneration cycles to recuperate, she truly enjoyed the intimacy they shared. It was worth it. The diminutive redhead made Seven feel so alive and invigorated. She did not want to give it up…

Seven loved her Captain.

Not waiting on Seven to begin, Janeway attached her mouth to the plump lips, sucking the lower lip into her own mouth, relishing the sweet softness. Seconds later, she pushed her tongue past smooth teeth to strike against the other woman's sensitive muscle. She dueled with it forcefully as she slid her hands down Seven's sleek back.

Kathryn ended up pressing her hips firmly against Seven's pelvis, but they were still too clothed to feel each other's electrified skin. She squeezed Seven's more than ample breasts, but it was lacking with the biosuit still on.

Sensing the impatience in her lover, Seven broke away to completely remove her biosuit. It took a mere second for the blonde to reach back and unclasp the formfitting outfit letting it drop to pool loosely around her feet. Seven took that opportunity to remove Kathryn's blue short sleeved tunic and Janeway unzipped her pants frantically shoving them off along with her underwear.

The ex-borg started sucking on her lover's neck as the redhead removed her own bra thus releasing her now hard breasts. Seven immediately latched onto the left nipple feverishly with her mouth. Kathryn moaned deeply already burning up with desire.

Forcing Seven away from her breasts, Janeway pounced on the young woman's flesh, only to nip feverishly at the hardened areolas. She desperately grasped as much of the fleshy part as she could, needling and squeezing them with the palms of her hands. After teasing the tips with fingers, licks and light suckles, she devour them by engulfing them into her salivating mouth. Seven's blood pulsed through her incensed and lost to the sensations that Janeway ravished upon her.

Pushing Seven down onto the bed, Janeway moved stealthily on top of her to instigate a hard penetrating kissing only to roll her blonde lover over in the process of kissing her passionately.

Overcome with ardor, Janeway cut loose on whatever reserve she had and parted the long legs to thrust two fingers into the tight, wet inner folds. She worked her lover hard and fast and as always Seven complied faithfully like that was the only way it could be. It was still a wonderful experience to Seven, if lacking in tenderness. Janeway was a caring and compassionate person; she just didn't show it often or extensively during sex.

Plunging in rapidly with more lust than love, Janeway brought her woman to a shuddering climax after only a few minutes. It never took long with the way Janeway worked her.

Janeway loved to watch the borg lose control. She felt smug over being able to force the young woman to lose her passivity, the coldness she showed everyone but her. Before Kathryn knew it though, her heart would start feeling somewhat guilty at not being able to give Seven more. She would feel strange as if something was missing before discarding the sentimentality and denying it vehemently fearing the many things it would compromise in her life.

As Seven felt the dam burst inside her, bathing her in ripples of pleasure, it freed her body and soul. She could not help, but shout out to the pleasure engulfing her body as it raced through her veins in deep throbbing pulses. After the ebbs died down and she returned to herself there was always a disappointment in the way Janeway handled her.

Once the young woman recovered, she smiled and started to make love to Kathryn sensually. She added more patience and passion to the experience. She kissed her thoroughly, but softer. She stroked Kathryn's inner channel at a quickened pace, but sweetly, thoroughly loving her. She adored the protruding nipples and caressed them until Janeway finally demanded a harder approach, which Seven gave into to please her lascivious lover. As she stroked in and out feeling the moist slickened walls, Seven knew she was completely in love with the Captain who was Kathryn Janeway. She just wasn't sure if Janeway felt the same.

Kathryn demanded it even faster, but Seven only obliged to an extent not wanting to lose the rhythm that she was enjoying. The process of being inside Kathryn's private world and helping her to achieve physical bliss seemed sacred to Seven. Kathryn was always in a rush it seemed, but Seven felt that variety was good in their sex life. She felt the whole process was much more enjoyable when done properly savoring the contact and enjoying the union.

Nearing the onset of Kathryn's release, Seven abandoned her routine and moved deeply into Janeway's vagina with quick thrusts while simultaneously touching her lips to her lover's fine mouth with an impassioned kiss.

Kathryn had to admit that this last minute loving that Seven gave to her was so good that she felt as though she would pass out from the exquisite pleasure. Panting heavily to the motion that rocked her world, she grunted loudly before yelling as her hot fluids spilled out. She was on fire and in the throes of such a zealous euphoria that she felt addicted to Seven and couldn't get enough of the young woman.

As Janeway came down from her high, she wondered if she was going to become permanently addicted to what Seven offered.

Shaking the unwanted thoughts aside, Kathryn laid next to Seven preferring that instead of cuddling as both women's chests heaved to bring in much needed oxygen.

"That was wonderful, thank you." Janeway smiled shyly.

"Yes, it was." Seven agreed, because it was physically quite splendid. "I love you." Seven stated, the words coming from her heart. Looking up at the stars through the port side window above the bed, she wished for an equal response.

"I know," Was Janeway's only response.

 

*****

 

The next day brought more routine maintenance as Seven assisted Lt. B'Elanna Torres in Engineering with a complete warp core diagnostic. Everything had to be taken offline and Voyager would be at a stand still for awhile, but it was a quiet area of space so the Captain figured it was as good a time as any.

Truthfully, Seven was grateful for the distraction. She was becoming more and more disturbed by her growing unhappiness regarding her relationship with Kathryn. However, she didn't know exactly what she needed or why, only that a feeling of uneasiness settled over her.

Seven knew from their discussions, that Janeway strictly forbid her from talking to anyone about their relationship. 'No one must know', she had made that abundantly clear.

As disappointing at that agreement was now, Seven felt devoted to her Captain's wishes. She had a fierce attraction to the older woman and she did not want what they shared to end, so she had adapted to whatever Janeway wanted and made sure she acted as her normally cool self when in front of other crewmen.

Internally, her behavior was another matter.

As much as she enjoyed her Captain sexually, she missed the old way they use to interact. They used to talk more. Janeway used to be more understanding of Seven's viewpoints and arguments than of late. Seven use to think that the Captain enjoyed simply spending time with her, but she was unsure of even that lately. They did talk of course, but only briefly usually consisting of the day's activities before Janeway wanted less talk and more physicality.

The blonde conceded to an inner emptiness that she was unaccustomed to because of this scenario in her personal life. Seven speculated that maybe she had done something wrong for the Captain to be behaving this way, but Janeway assured the young woman that she hadn't. Yet, Janeway's actions perplexed Seven greatly. It made her very apprehensive and she became slightly dismayed over her inability to explain it.

I need more, she would think to herself, while monitoring the console in front of the warp core.

More of what? The little voice in her brain challenged her.

I am unsure.

That is not specific. Do you require more of her time?

Seven considered that carefully. Yes and no. She is the Captain and doesn't have a lot of time. She does gives me most of her free time late at night. However, we usually spend it having sex and talking ship's business before I leave later that evening or in the early morning.

So you require more quality time with her?

Yes, I suppose that is true.

Do you discuss this with her?

We end up arguing about it and then she refuses to discuss it. She threatens to end our late night rendezvous'.

So, she is not as committed as you?

I am unsure. I know she values a monogamous relationship, but I do not know if she is committed to me or not. I would assume Not by her casual disregard of what we share.

It's about time you admitted your feelings! How does it feel to have to keep your relationship quiet? To have to sneak around?

At first, I did not mind because I was naïve, but now it bothers me and it hurts to think that Kathryn would be ashamed of us.

I do not know if I would categorize it as ashamed. Perhaps, she fears the crews' reaction to her having a relationship with an ex-borg. She might fear resentment or loss of respect, which a Captain cannot afford. Either way, it does not excuse what she has done to you.

Yet, she has done nothing to harm me.

Hasn't she? Are you willing to keep going in a partnership knowing how sad it makes you when you have to leave her quarters, quietly in the early morning hours hoping no one sees you? And why hasn't she told you she loves yet?

I don't know! I am in emotional pain at the thought that she does not… cannot love me, but I do not wish to lose what little I have with her.

You are in love with her, but she does not reciprocate. Not in words, nor in deeds. Can you live with that indefinitely?

Seven frowned at her internal conversation, but she could not deny the answer.

No!

The pain will only grow if you are complacent in a stagnant partnership. You must tell her how you feel and if she argues or dismisses it, you must end the relationship. It will be painful, but the sooner you do that, the easier it will be in the long run.

"No…" she whispered, feeling a sudden tightness in her chest.

"Seven?" B'Elanna happened to be walking by.

"Lieutenant?" Seven responded quickly not realizing anyone was around her.

"Uh, did you say something?" B'Elanna asked.

She took three seconds to answer. "No, I did not."

B'Elanna turned an eagle eye on her. "Are you all right, you look like hell, Seven."

"I am tired, Lt… Perhaps I will take a break…"

"Yeah, everything is ok here… for now." B'Elanna looked at Seven oddly. "I'll hail you, if I need you." The borg never required a break!? What's up with her?

"Thank you." Seven replied and left Engineering.

 

*****

 

Seven headed for Cargo Bay Two, but she was distracted by her inner thoughts. Entering what had become her quarters, she went over to the controls on the second alcove and started keying in a regeneration sequence when a sudden thought made her stop.

What if Kathryn cannot love me because I am borg!?

This caused Seven an increase in her despair because she could not change that. She would always be Borg. It was part of her; physically she needed the implants to survive. Seven surmised that Kathryn was not repulsed by the implants themselves because intimacy between them would not have occurred if she were.

No that wasn't it, but there could be a mental or emotional reluctance to falling in love with an ex-borg drone that Seven had not considered. How would Starfleet react to a partnership with the enemy, even an ex-one. What if Captain Janeway could never love me because of this?! Starfleet is her life. It is what she is and I could no more change that than my Borg past. Nor would I, because that is part of what I love about her regardless of the pain it causes from having to share her.

Seven did not understand the emotional repercussions of her actions to involve herself with Janeway all those weeks ago. She could not have anticipated the immense feeling of loss that would accompany what was called a 'break up'. She decided that becoming human was an art in futility. Emotions were fleeting at best, unstable, unreliable and unreasonable, she speculated. She was better off when she was ignorant.

Seven was becoming increasingly angry and needed to leave the Cargo Bay. The site of the Borg alcove made her ill at the moment. In her confusion, she would not be able to regenerate now so she opted to forego the process. It was mid-alpha shift, around 13:23 so she decided to go to the Mess Hall to ingest some nutrients.

Upon entering, Neelix, the residential Talaxian greeted her. "Seven! How are you? What can I get you?"

"Nutritional supplement thirty two would suffice."

Neelix made face at her selection. "Are you sure I can't get you anything more… palatable."

"I am sure. Taste is irrelevant." She stated. Just like emotions, she thought. Irrelevant.

He replicated it for her and she sat down at the far corner facing the windows so she could stare at the stars.

 

*****

 

It 18:25 when Janeway entered her quarters. She glimpsed Seven in her bedroom as she took off her uniform jacket and untucked the blue-grey tunic from her slacks.

"Seven?" Janeway questioned upon entering her bedroom. "You're early." Janeway commented secretly pleased. It meant they could start early tonight.

Seven was sitting on the bed looking profoundly sad and Janeway wondered why, sincerely hoping it wasn't the same problem they had been having. Every now and then Seven tried to change the way things were between them, which only lead to heated arguments.

This evening Seven was determined to find out a few truths before proceeding any further.

"I want you to tell me what is in your heart, Kathryn." Seven would be stubborn until she got what she wanted. Of course, she hadn't considered what she would do if Janeway did not comply. Would she be strong enough to resist? They had rather heated arguments in the past regarding this subject. Janeway would always say, 'lets just see where it goes' and not commit to anything.

"Excuse me?!" Janeway asked stupefied, placing a hand on her hip.

Feeling somewhat nervous, Seven looked up, deeply into Kathryn's blue-grey eyes. "It is quite simple Kathryn. I wish to know how you feel about me. I feel as if I am making love to the Captain of a starship and not the woman, Kathryn Janeway."

"That's not true!" Janeway's voice rose an octave. "I mean… technically I am the Captain, but when I'm in here… with you, I am only Kathryn."

"You are in error. You are always the Captain… always in control. Everything is your way or no way at all. You can't relinquish control even with me or when we are alone. Are you… ashamed of being with me?" Seven inquired praying that it wasn't true.

"Don't be absurd! I AM the Captain. This relationship has to be my way; there is no other option. I've explained that many times." She finished angrily. "What does it matter anyways?!"

Seven moved off the bed and knelt before Janeway to hold her hands. "Because I love you and I want you to love me in return, but I fear something to do with your command is preventing you." She reflected. "I do not say this to injury you Kathryn, but I need to know. You have never told me that you love me... I cannot help but think that part of you is still afraid of what we have. You are afraid your crew will find out and that it will affect your command. You fear the consequences will hurt both of us."

A kneeling, tender and pleading Seven was too much as Kathryn turned white faced. "I don't know… " She responded in a feeble voice. "…what I feel." It sounded like a good excuse to Janeway as she regained her composure. A good reason to justify her actions without giving a real answer as to how she felt.

That answer baffled Seven. It was not what she had expected. She expected Kathryn to fully agree with her and counter her argument. Perhaps even admit that she cared for Seven, but couldn't give her more because of her position on the ship.

"You do not know?!" The blonde echoed, shaken. "How can you not know? We've been together over a month… and I know what I feel for you!"

"Seven," Kathryn stood before her lover and attempted to maintain a calm, soft face. "Please… don't do this. This debate won't serve any useful purpose."

"No useful purpose!?" Seven felt frustration, anger and fear erupt in her. "That is all you have to say?!"

"What do you want me to say?!" Janeway pulled her hands away leaving Seven shocked and pale in the face. Janeway went over to her bed and slumped down on it.

"I only want to know if you love me?" Seven asked dejectedly after she stood up.

"I can't." Kathryn replied weakly.

"Why?"

"You know why." She affirmed quietly.

"I do not believe you." Seven exclaimed turning around to face her lover. "I believe you feel more than you want to admit."

"That's pretty presumptuous and if you believe that then I don't know what else to tell you." Janeway rebuked, hugging her legs to her chest on the edge of the bed.

"I think you do, you're just afraid to love me unconditionally. Afraid to let me see what is inside, but I already have… And I know it to be beautiful." Seven stated disheartened. "The way I love you here." She pointed to her chest slightly above her left breast, where her heart was currently breaking.

Janeway ground her teeth together, her face tight and her eyes misty as emotions conflicted within.

Seven had nothing more to lose so she kept on talking. It made her feel a little better. "I have nothing to gain by loving you except your feelings. I have my choice of mates on Voyager. I know of a few individuals who are attracted to me."

That brought a dark look from the Captain that she couldn't hide.

"And I might even enjoy such a union physically, but I cannot fathom loving them emotionally, half as much as I love you."

"I do not desire your rank or the privileges that come with it. I do not desire power over you only to be as equals in here when we are away from the command structure. And as much as I love you, I know I will always be second to your ship and crew. I accept that and I understand it completely. You would not be the strong, compassionate individual I love if you were any different."

"I do not know the real reason for your hesitancy. I fear to think that maybe there is a deeper regret on your part. Maybe you fear losing the respect of your crew because you are in a relationship with me. That maybe you are embarrassed because I am a female or perhaps because I was once Borg."

"I do not know what else to do or say for you to open up to me. I do not know how to love you any more than I already do." Seven's voice was pained.

"I know I agreed to this type of relationship in the beginning and I apologize for reneging on that, but I was ignorant and did not fully understand what I was getting into…" She paused briefly to sniffle. "I need more than that now and I clearly see that you cannot give me what I require… " her voice was starting to crack. "It is not in our best interests to continue this... " She stated remorseful.

Kathryn could only stare, her mouth agape as Seven walked out of the bedroom and perhaps out of her life. Seven had told her that she loved her before, but something was different in this admission. Almost as if Seven were laying her soul bare for Kathryn to see.

She's walking out on me!

Janeway had watery build up in her eyes that she fought valiantly to contain, which through some effort she did, forcibly turning sorrow into anger at the gall of the younger woman to attempt to leave her.

NO! Something screamed in her head as she realized that Seven truly intended to break up with her. Swiftly, She ran after her lover.

"Wait!" Janeway shouted to make sure she was heard. "Are you just going to leave me!? Just like that?!"

Stopping before the door, Seven turned to face her. "Yes," She shot back. "It is for the best." She confirmed, trying to be strong in her conviction despite feeling melancholy. Kathryn needed time to think about what she said.

Perhaps an evening alone, would persuade her to change her attitude, but probably not. Seven knew it would be a good idea for her to leave, now.

"Don't I get a say in this?" Kathryn questioned peeved.

"I am in need of regeneration." She lied uncomfortably. Truthfully, she was emotionally spent and needed a reprieve. "If you wish to discuss this further. I can meet you in the Mess Hall… tomorrow." Seven knew Janeway would not want to meet in a public place. She watched Janeway's eyes flicker her way, confused and astounded. "Goodnight, Captain." The blonde turned to walk through the automatic doors.

Fuming in silence for a few passing seconds, but ultimately unable to accept this, Kathryn charged after her lover. Furious at how this ended, Janeway followed her down the hallway. "Seven!"

Surprised, Seven glanced back momentarily disoriented at the irate Captain who was hot on her trail through the corridors of deck three.

"I'm not finished talking to you!" her voice was loud.

She had a grimace on her face when they passed a few crewmen who stared at the Captain cautiously while rushing by. They assumed the Captain's mood was in regards to an argument she was having with the difficult young woman… and they were right.

"There is nothing more to say, Cap-tain!" Seven strolled faster trying to keep a pace above her Commanding Officer.

"Like hell there isn't!"

Seven of Nine entered the turbolift. "Deck 2," she called out to the computer and turned around in time to see Janeway's face coming up close with a deep scowl etched on it just as the door closed.

 

*****

 

Entering the Mess Hall, Seven stopped by Neelix to order a nutritional drink as the door hissed opened to reveal a half-uniformed and very perturbed Captain Janeway with fire in her grey filled eyes.

"Uh oh," Neelix murmured to himself, noticing something was wrong by her appearance alone.

The Captain's eyes swiveled mercilessly around the room only stopping when they found the intended target; Seven of Nine. She came to stand next to the blonde, leaned an elbow on the counter and the other one on her hip in clearly an authoritative gesture, which Seven was not impressed with.

She kept her tone low so only Neelix and Seven could hear her. "We haven't finished our conversation." Janeway spoke quietly.

"Yes we have."

"No," She drawled out slowly. "There is still much we need to discuss."

"Tomorrow."

"I want to discuss this now." Janeway said through clenched teeth.

"No," Seven refused.

The auburn haired officer turned to Neelix. "Would you excuse us for a moment?"

"Certainly Captain." He looked cautiously at both women before vacating the premises.

"Now, why won't you talk to me all of a sudden?"

"I have no problem with talking to you Captain." Seven remarked easily.

"Good--"

"However," Seven interrupted. "you usually don't care for what I have to say." She reinforced her position.

"That's not true."

"Yes it is." The young woman asserted.

"You're being unreasonable." Janeway complained, her voice quivering with what Seven thought was extreme frustration.

"I do not wish to discuss it anymore…" Seven stated firmly.

"And why not?"

"Because I tire of this attitude and I… need time to think." Seven demanded, noticing the wince from the Captain. That must have stung her pride. She could not control Seven. The young blonde was no one's automaton.

Janeway was finding this difficult to accept. "I order you to come back to my quarters so we can talk about this privately."

Seven found that order extremely irksome and uncalled for. The blonde turned exasperated, defiant ice blue eyes on her Captain. "Are you prepared to put me in the brig if I disobey Captain?" Seven challenged her, not appreciating the use of Janeway's status and rank in a personal matter.

"At least you wouldn't be able to run from me there!" Kathryn tried to keep her voice down, but heads were starting to turn in their direction.

"God, You're stubborn." Janeway hissed.

"You are arrogant." Seven spat back.

"Good Captain's need to be."

"That is an unacceptable excuse."

The Captain sighed heavily. Despite her aggressiveness, this was wearing her down. "Please talk to me." Janeway pleaded with a stern frown still covering her face. She was losing this verbal battle, losing Seven and she didn't want to lose either.

"I cannot give in to this Kathryn. If I do I am affirming your position of authority over me."

"...But I am in a position of authority over you! I'm the Captain!"

"Not in this. Not in the matters of my heart… you are NOT!"

"That's what this is all about… isn't it? Control?" Janeway looked around the room. It was late at night so there were only a few cadets about, eating and chatting, but they were looking at them warily. Apparently, they hadn't been so quiet after all. Shit!

"Yes," Seven hissed out slowly. "Your control, my subservience… but no longer."

Janeway was now angry at the possibility that the cat was out of the bag and pissed off that Seven's was dumping her!

"Fine," Janeway said gravely. She had enough. "We're done." Her voice spoke raggedly, then she turned on her heels and left the Mess Hall.

Seven's only visible reaction was a raised eyebrow, wondering if she did the right thing in forcing the issue. Somehow, her aching heart didn't think so.

 

*****

 

A few days later Captain Kathryn Janeway was sitting in her Ready Room going over Personnel reports, but she wasn't concentrating enough to do them justice. She dropped the PADD haphazardly to her desk and sighed. She had a headache that was growing exponentially each day and it would not seem to let up.

The truth of the matter was that she had Seven of Nine on her mind and it wouldn't go away. She missed the young woman in her bed at night. She missed the physicality badly. Janeway felt like she was going through severe withdrawal symptoms.

My feelings are inconsequential. I cannot love anyone completely because I'm married to Voyager.

She knew it was for the best and should have suspected that the young woman would grow up emotionally eventually. She just hadn't figured it would be so soon. She honestly thought she had years before Seven would develop any real feelings of love or commitment. Yet, all it took was a few weeks to figure out that she wanted more than her Captain could give her. The Captain felt guilty and remorseful for what she put the young woman through. Seven had meant what she said in her quarters that night, but Janeway felt helpless to do anything about it. Seven had literally, laid her heart out and Janeway slapped it down as if the young woman's love was meaningless. She didn't mean to imply that, but she didn't want to give the woman false hopes either.

Completely confounded at own her behavior, she was at a loss at what to do when her thoughts were interrupted.

"Captain to the Bridge." Came Chakotay's voice through the Comm system.

She stepped out onto the Bridge grateful for the distraction. "Report."

"Looks like we have a derelict ship off our port bow. No life signs." Her first officer informed her.

"What happened to them?" Janeway asked moving towards the viewscreen for a better look.

"The vessel has multiple hull breaches due to heavy weapons fire of unknown origin." Tuvok disclosed.

"Unknown origin?" Janeway was perplexed. "You can't tell what kind of weaponry caused this?"

"No, however from my scans of the weapon's energy trail, I can tell it is significantly more advanced than Voyager."

"Go to yellow alert. Harry I want you to run continuous scans for any ships in the vicinity. I want to know as soon as anything appears."

"Yes, Captain."

"I take it we don't know who they are?" She rubbed the side of her head with a finger, thinking. She looked around and multiple heads nodded, 'no'.

"So what do think Commander?" She smirked at him. "Want to lead an away team?"

"I thought you'd never ask," he said before heading to the turbolift.

 

*****

 

Chakotay assembled his away team consisting of himself, Seven of Nine, and two ensigns from security, Ayala and Mulcahy. They put on environmental suits, donned wrist lights and armed themselves each with a compression rifle.

They beamed over onto what they assumed was the Bridge. It was dark and eerie as Chakotay flipped his wrist light on. Looking around, he saw the first body of the dead crew. They were humanoid and preserved well by the vacuum of space. He noticed their skin color as similar to that of humans after death. This particular alien had light green long hair, straw like and spot markings on the sides of the face. The nose and facial features could almost pass as human. Moving his light down he counted five fingers and normal appendages, signifying they were bipedal humanoids.

"Have you met them before?" He asked Seven, who was nearby trying to bring power to a computer console.

"No," She answered succinctly. "I am going to find the Engineering section, see if I can bring the power back online."

"Wait!" Chakotay turned to her. "What for? These people are dead, it won't do them any good."

Seven sighed visibly at having to explain. "Yes, but if we can access their systems perhaps we can find out what happened to them." She asserted logically.

"This ship is more advanced that Voyager. Their data logs might not be compatible."

"That is a possible risk." Her tone was edgy and laced with annoyance. "Do you want me to try or not?" Seven asked with impatience.

Chakotay had received many complaints regarding the ex-borg's attitude the last few days and upon mentioning it to Janeway, he received a disgusted look that had confounded him. Especially when Janeway had told him that it was his decision on how he wanted to discipline the young woman if she stepped out of line. She had given him full authority and more than suggested that he take care of it. It was odd because Kathryn had personally seen to all the Borg's discipline in the past. Why stop now?

"All right," he said to Seven not appreciating her tone. "Go ahead for now, take Ayala with you."

She nodded, and after a few words with Ayala, they left down a dark corridor disappearing from his view.

 

*****

 

A few hours later, Seven managed to get partial power back online despite the foreign alien language, advanced systems and the small headache that persisted in annoying her on an off.

Chakotay met her in the Engineering room. It was hard to see except for the blue emergency lights trying to break through the darkness. Using his wrist light, he quickly found Seven in the far corner, studying a crystal of somekind.

She pulled out the crystal shard that resembled a hard deep blue diamond half the size of an isolinear chip. It about an inch and a half tall and a half inch wide.

"I believe this crystal contains data." She informed him as he walked up to her.

"Is it compatible with Voyager?"

"Unlikely, but I believe this device here will read it." She paused. "With your permission?"

"Go right ahead." He eyed her inquisitively.

She placed it in the hole of what she guessed was the reader and the screen above it came to life.

"We are under attack! We are outnumbered four to one. The Visaati are unwilling to negotiate passage demanding that we leave their space, but that was impossible without assistance. Our systems were severely damaged by a class 10 ion storm. Our quantum core is offline and we can't repair it so far from home without replacement parts. Our best defense, our cloaking device is offline as well. We have no choice but to fight, but I know in our current condition that we will not survive. Unfortunately for us, their technology is on par with our own rendering our shields ineffectual against their transphasic torpedoes. Per my Captain's permission, we are sending this via an encoded subspace message to any Zyotan ships within 50 light years. We are sending coordinates of the exact location of the ion storm and its probable heading warning all vessels to avoid this area of space because of its violent spec---."

"The message ends there." Seven informed him. "Most likely that was when the hull breach occurred in Engineering.

Chakotay was about to reply when a combadge chirped interrupting him.

"Voyager to away team." Came Janeway's voice.

"Chakotay here."

"Just to let you know, we've spotted a ship heading in our direction approximately four light years away. The hull configuration matches that of our derelict here. Have you found anything out yet?"

Seven frowned.

"We found a data crystal with some interesting information on it, but we haven't finished looking around." He informed her.

"Understood, Commander, I look forward to hearing it. Janeway out."

"Commander?"

Chakotay turned to face Seven hearing the tension in her voice. "I believe we should leave now."

"Why?" Chakotay didn't understand. "That ship is almost four light-years away. It would take over a day to reach us at warp nine."

She motioned for him to follow her via her wrist light to a small round tubular casing, which resembled Voyager's warp core in design if not functionality.

"It's a quantum based drive. I do not know if it could be classified as slipstream or transwarp, but I can estimate accurately that it is capable of travelling significantly faster than Voyager's top speed."

Chakotay's brow furrowed.

"It could arrive here in mere minutes, not the estimated 24 hours."

"Chakotay to Transporter Room one, beam us back, now!"

"Aye, sir."

Before they dematerialized, Chakotay gave Seven a contemptuous look.

 

*****

 

As he was leaving Transporter Room One, Chakotay ordered Seven to report to the Conference Room after she changed out of her environmental suit.

He went to the locker room on deck 2, changed into his uniform before proceeding to the Bridge. He explained the situation to the Captain and taking no chances, not knowing if they were allies of the derelict or the ones who destroyed it, she ordered Mr. Paris to go to warp nine.

He then asked the Captain to join him in the Conference Room as he explained the rest of what the away team had found and what the ex-borg had withheld for hours.

Janeway knew Chakotay was upset by the look on his face and his tone. He was usually a very quiet man and it took a lot to upset him. She was surprised this irked him so much. However, the issues were steadily increasing with regards to the young woman.

Janeway shook her head. I should have never gotten involved with the strong willed-woman, but I certainly don't regret what we shared. I still miss it.

Swallowing quietly, the Captain forced herself to calm down, as the thoughts alone awoke her body's needs.

Just then Seven of Nine chimed for admittance.

Janeway cleared her throat. "Come."

She strolled in and stood at attention linking her hands behind her back. She was dismayed to find the Captain present and it showed even on her placid face. Seeing her ex-lover brought unwanted emotions and such regret. Yet she was grateful the headache had disappeared for the time being.

"Chakotay tells me you withheld vital information." Janeway stated evenly, although her body was crying out to touch the young woman. It was very distracting.

Seven stared at him. "I estimated it would take months if not years to figure out how the quantum based drive functions, especially since it was difficult for me to translate key words of the language let alone the core's specifications."

"Why didn't you mention this earlier." He asked her acerbically. "We could have had B'Elanna take a look at it. Maybe the two of you could have adapted some of the technology to Voyager. This could have been an opportunity to get us closer to earth."

"I did not deem it relevant at the time." Seven recanted firmly.

"You seemed to figure it out pretty well in a few hours." He added, not letting it rest how irritated he was.

"The language was similar to species 1205, but is it not exact. There are subtle differences that makes the translation tedious."

"That does not give you the right to withhold this information! Regardless of that, we could have taken the technology with us and left this system earlier if you had informed me right away!"

"Chakotay…." The Captain put a hand on his shoulder to calm him down.

"The drive cannot be--"

"You should have informed him." Janeway interrupted Seven without looking at her. "I want you to go over Starfleet away mission protocols again. If you have any questions, ask Ensign Kim. He's very good with the interpretations of the regulations."

"Understood," Seven stated, her face hot with anger. "…And I apologize for my error, Commander. If you wish, we can still go back and tractor beam the entire ship to the Alpha Quadrant." She provoked him intentionally, knowing that was an impossibility. The alien ship was too large, a massive power drain and Voyager would not have been able to go to Warp.

"We could've dismantled the core, taken key components with us and worked on it afterwards!" Chakotay retorted hotly.

"That would have taken days. I take it you did not notice that the core was welded to the sub structure of the ship?" Seven was confounded by his oversight. "If you want the data that much, perhaps you and Lt. Torres should have stayed behind." Seven added arrogantly.

"Seven… " Janeway warned her.

Chakotay's face turned beet red. He was seething inside. "I was your commanding officer! It was your duty to inform me, no matter how insignificant!"

"There was no time. Conveying the information was pointless under these circumstances!" Seven retorted heatedly.

"That will be enough!" Janeway shot her a force ten glare. "Seven, you're dismissed!"

Seven nodded defiantly and left.

"Honestly, Kathryn. I don't know why you kept her onboard." He commented disdainfully.

Kathryn looked at him stunned. "That's uncalled for Commander." Janeway responded sternly.

"I don't know how you do it."

"Chakotay, I know she's difficult and stubborn, but she has saved our necks more than once. We couldn't have gotten this far without her."

"Perhaps," he allowed. "but if she doesn't change her attitude, she's going to be spending a lot more time in the brig."

Janeway chose to ignore the comment. "She's probably just going through a phase. She needs time to adjust, that's all." Janeway assumed, guessing at the real reason that had Seven so unsettled.

"Adjust?!" he said dumbfounded. "She's had four years to adjust. How many years does it take Kathryn?"

Janeway turned a sharp eye upon him. "I don't know Commander." Her voice was low but laced with contempt. "How many years does it take to regain your humanity after 18 years as a Borg drone!?"

Chakotay blinked, slightly jolted at his Captain's defensive outburst. "I hope your right, Kathryn, for all our sakes."

She didn't want to have this conversation. "That will be all Commander."

He nodded and left.

"I hope so too." She whispered to herself after she was alone.

 

*****

 

Slouched in her command chair while leaning on her hand in deep thought, Captain Janeway was overwhelmed with her personal problems regarding a young blonde female when Ensign Kim rudely interrupted her.

"Captain!" Ensign Kim shouted. "We have a ship dead ahead. It's in our flight path!"

"Onscreen," Chakotay ordered, recognizing it immediately as soon as the image came up on the viewer. "It matches the description of the vessel we were on."

A ship appeared at a dead stop only hundred thousand kilometers in front of Voyager's current trajectory.

"Full stop," she commanded. "Raise shields."

"Coming out of warp." Tom announced.

"Hail them!"

Just then a dozen aliens appeared on the Bridge brandishing weapons. There were two aliens for every officer and they were quickly cornered and subdued. Chakotay examined the living version of the dead humanoids they recently left behind on a derelict vessel. They had silvery white uniforms brandished with emerald green stripes crisscrossing the torso. Gold colored braids were interwoven in their long light green hair. They were actually a good-looking race.

"What the hell are you doing on my vessel?!" Janeway threatened, not considering their aesthetic appeal while her ship was in danger.

"Sarj di ha lo mekja." The alien in front of Janeway spoke in a smooth tone, but it was gibberish to her. Janeway

"The translator's aren't working." Janeway mentioned to Chakotay.

"Tik lome nok wun daw."

"I can't understand you." She replied frustrated.

The alien before her looked past her to another of his kind. "Sheek nok." He said and the alien ran a scanner over one of the back wall consoles.

The alien took a few minutes to scan Voyager's database before he joined the one next to Janeway. He looked at the device appearing to study the data and after an agonizing minute he spoke again.

"Can you understand me now?" The alien said in smooth North American English.

"Yes," Janeway was grateful for that. "My name is Captain Janeway. Just what are you doing invading my vessel?"

"I believe you are in violation here Captain. We found traces of your species DNA on one of our vessels that we found dead in space only a quarter light year from here. The area your ship recently left. I should be asking you, why you boarded one of our vessels?"

"We're explorers. We were only trying to find out what happened to the crew. We didn't realize we were violating one of your laws. You have our sincerest apologies for our ignorance. I assure you it won't happen again. You should also know that we did not destroy your ship." She tried to explain adamantly. Voyager would not last in a fire fight with their firepower therefore a little sucking up was necessary.

"I know your ship is not capable of it. I was merely testing you." He admitted and smiled, showing perfectly white teeth. "I was wondering if you found anything out with your investigation. It is my responsibility to report to my superiors what happened. However, we could not find any data crystals onboard."

"I would be more than happy to assist you, but not on the end of a weapon." She warned him.

He gave a hand signal to his men and they lowered their weapons. He gave his own weapon to an alien next to him, said something in their language and all the aliens except the leader disappeared in eleven clouds of sparkles.

Janeway was impressed with their technology, but still mad at their audacity.

"I don't appreciate having my ship overrun with strangers." She remarked coldly.

"I apologize for my brashness Captain Janeway." He bowed. "I have found that most technologically inferior species resort to violence at our perceived superiority and thus they end up attacking us before we have an opportunity to communicate our intentions, thus destroying themselves in the process." He explained sincerely.

"Since we have the technology, we use this method to not only dissuade violence, but to download and learn your language, so we may converse. We are not a violent race Captain and I have no intentions of commandeering your vessel. We seek exploration, such as yourselves."

"That's good to know." Janeway still wasn't pleased about it, but she let it go for now since he was weaponless and currently at their mercy despite his clearly technical superiority.

"So whom am I speaking with?" Janeway inquired.

"I am Captain Kree of the Kreytor. I am of the Zyotan race."

"Now that the pleasantries are out of the way. What information do you require?"

"I was wondering if you came across who was responsible for the destruction of our sister ship?"

Chakotay spoke up. "We viewed a data crystal that told us of a race called the Visaati."

"Do you know where this crystal is?"

"No," Chakotay answered puzzled. "I thought we left it the Engineering section of your vessel. In the viewer."

Kree arched an eyebrow. "I assure there was no such crystal found in that department. Can you recite the message?"

"They said they ran into a severe ion storm before engaging a species called the Visaati. From the message I would say they were too damaged from the storm to fight back. Other than that we don't know much."

"Is that all?"

"I'm afraid so, but if you need a more detailed account, then one of our crew members, Seven of Nine might be able to assist you. She was with me when we viewed the message." She might even have your crystal, he thought rudely. He hadn't seen her take it, but it wouldn't surprise him if she did.

"Seven of Nine. That's an unusual name. May I speak with this individual?"

"Of course, I'll take you to her." Janeway broke in. "Follow me," she suggested wanting to speak with Captain Kree without the entire Bridge crew listening.

Besides, she wouldn't dare send the Commander after the recent disagreement and Janeway haphazardly wondered if Seven had taken the crystal without telling anyone.

 

*****

 

While in the turbolift, Janeway made sure of Seven's location before ordering the turbolift to deck 5.

"I feel indebted to you Captain for this information. I feel it necessary to apologize again for our forwardness, but it has helped to save more lives than it has costed. Nevertheless, in repayment for the invasion of your vessel, I will escort you through this area of space if you so wish it."

Captain Janeway looked on his countenance with new eyes and she managed a small smile. "That really isn't necessary."

"This is a dangerous area of space if the Visaati are here, Captain."

"I take you've come across them before?"

"Yes a few times… with unfortunate consequences for both sides." His eyes flickered over hers. "You would not survive Captain. No insult intended."

"Non taken." Janeway grinned. "You sure it's not out of your way."

"I assure you, it is not."

"I should probably tell you it’s a possibility that one of my crewman took your data crystal." She told him reluctantly.

"For what purpose?"

"To study it most likely."

"That is an honorable reason."

She looked at him surprised. He wasn't very concerned about it all. "I apologize if that is true… and I assure you she will be reprimanded--"

He rose a hand up and shook his head. "It is no matter. I am more grateful in acquiring the information that in punishing a member of your crew."

 

*****

 

Captain Janeway entered the Astrometrics Lab to find Seven of Nine at the main console. Her face was serious and stern as she turned to glimpse her visitors. The Captain hoped she would be respectful to their guest.

"Seven of Nine," Janeway motioned to her Astrometrics Officer. "I would like you to meet Captain Kree."

Seven stopped what she was doing and turned completely around to tilt her head in greeting.

Captain Kree froze. "Stroyka!" His face paled severely as he stared at her, his breathing came in quick gasps.

"Are you all right!" Janeway was about to call for a medical emergency.

"Y-Yes, I am all right." He croaked unevenly. "My… My people have never seen--"

Seven cut him off assuming that his problem was fear. "You are referring to my implants. I am no longer Borg. I assure you, I am no threat to you or any of your kind." She stated calmly.

"Um," Kree knew that wasn't the reason, but he let it go for now. "Of course, how… silly of me."

Janeway switched her eyes from Seven back to Kree. There was more from his reaction to Seven than he verbalized. The way he was looking at Seven seemed almost reverent. Janeway felt a pang of jealousy in her chest, but shrugged if off quickly.

The Captain explained everything to Seven and the former drone informed them that she did indeed have the crystal in Cargo Bay Two, much to Janeway's chagrin. Seven went on to recite the message word for word, giving the additional details that the Commander could not.

Janeway watched her avidly. Seven acted like she had done nothing wrong. She gave no indication of any kind of remorse at her blatant disregard for protocol.

Yet to Janeway's increasing irritation, Kree seemed overly impressed with the young blonde and he didn't attempt to hide it.

"Captain," he asked, with a bright smile. "If you don't mind, since we will be travelling together for awhile." He seemed almost shy. "Would it be possible if Seven of Nine could give me a tour of your ship?"

He asked like I was going to say no. She wanted to scream no, but her diplomatic training prevented her. "Of course, Seven would be happy to give you a tour of Voyager. Although, I suspect it won't live up to your standards."

"On the contrary, I find it most exciting to learn about different species. We learn the most when we study the past. This is like a history lesson. We are not that different Captain."

"I agree," The Captain stated, but she was distracted as she glimpsed Seven looking inquisitively at Captain Kree. "Seven, when you're finished here, I'd like to have a word with you." She said a bit harsher than she planned to and the visiting Captain looked at her somewhat puzzled. Turning back to Kree. "Well, if you'll excuse me, I have duties to attend to." She said quickly before leaving.

 

*****

 

Seven politely gave him a tour of the ship and stopped by the Cargo Bay enroute to retrieve his data crystal.

Upon entering the Cargo Bay, she spotted the crystal on top of her terminal. She picked it up and studied it for a few seconds before handing to Kree, a twinkle of regret in her eye.

"Here," Seven stated as he took it from her. "I apologize for taking it."

"Why did you?" he asked curiously. "None of your technology can read it."

"Sentimental value," She linked her hands behind her back.

"This?" He raised both eyebrows. "A data crystal?"

"It reminds me of… " Seven faltered briefly. "Something I've lost."

Kree noted her hesitancy and decided not to probe further. "Shall we continue on with the tour?"

"Of course."

As they headed out, she re-examined her reasons for appropriating the crystal. Its shape and transparent properties were inspiring and reminded her of the Omega molecule. Yet it had an alluring internal azure color swirling within the individual glass shards that, much to Seven's surprise,… also resembled Kathryn's eyes, most notably during climax.

Endlessly deep blue, clear, emotive… riveting…

That was the deciding moment when she had impulsively decided to take it, despite Starfleet regulations.

Bringing her focus back to the task at hand, Seven decided to show the alien Captain the lower sections of the ship first starting with Engineering. She explained the nuances of the Warp core and inquired as to how his engines worked. She was most curious if they were compatible with Voyager, but Kree gave little information moving on quickly to questions about Voyager.

Continuing to other departments, she explained the basic functions of each and introduced him to the crew on duty. Seven found Kree to be an avid listener. He paid close attention and asked thoughtful questions.

Finishing up her tour at the Mess Hall, Seven decided to converse with him for an additional few minutes while ingesting her evening nutritional supplement. After asking a few questions regarding Kree's culinary preferences, Mr. Neelix whipped up a more than suitable meal for his palate.

As she observed this individual, Seven decided she liked this alien Captain. He acted very similar to humans to her surprise yet he was logical, but not in such a way as to detract from his personable good nature. He also seemed quite taken with her. Unusually so.

"Captain Kree, May I ask you a question?"

"Of course, Annika." He said, easily. Once Seven told him her human designation he insisted on calling her that, much to her irritation. She knew he meant well after how he reacted to her story of being taken by the Borg at such a young age, but she still wasn't sure how she felt about her given name. She always insisted on being called Seven, therefore, wasn't used to hearing it.

"What does 'Stroyka' mean?" She asked curiously.

He looked up at Seven, with a profound gaze. "It's a religious term. It's a rather long story, but… I will try and give you the concise version." He paused to gather his thoughts. "Legend has it that she arrived on our planet before our species existed. There was only animal and plant life at that time in our history. As far as we can estimate from historians and geological surveys, our planet was dying. They believed it to be caused by our proximity to a star that went supernova. The resulting energy wave would have completely obliterated our world, leaving a dry dead wasteland in its wake. This would have destroyed our planet thousands of years before evolution created us, the Zyotan people. The legend is that she, the 'Stroyka', somehow saved our planet."

"That is very interesting if not plausible." Seven stated, not meaning to be disrespectful.

He continued, not answering her doubt. "Of course over the years, our people eventually assumed that she did it by technological means, but we have no way of knowing for sure. The fact remains that she somehow protected our planet. It was this act that gave us the opportunity for life." He stated with pride.

"Has anyone ever seen this 'Stroyka' in person?"

"No, but there have been unexplained incidences that we attribute to her. We believe she is present in spirit if not in body."

"Such as?"

"There are so many unexplained cases; most notably the healing of the sick and injured."

Seven did not believe, but she would not deny him his faith.

"There's a statue of her in one of our cities. I always assumed, she created it so we would remember what she had done for us. There is an inscription on the base of the statue that reads 'Stroyka'."

Seven rose an eyebrow sharply. "She represents a goddess to you."

"No, not really. We honor her yes, but we know now that she was an advanced form of life. Perhaps an alien, who did a kind deed for a world still developing."

He laughed slightly. "As you probably guessed, you resemble that statue. I apologize for my reaction, but it couldn't be helped really. A living legend is… an odd thing to come across in person." He finished almost nervously.

"I believe I understand." Seven remarked trying to bring the topic to a close. She would not accept any type of idol worship on her part. After all, she was part Borg. Nothing about her deserved to be worshiped.

Frowning at how those thoughts invaded her mind, Seven noticed a painful headache developing in her skull.

"Are you ok?" He asked cautiously, hoping he didn't say anything to upset her.

"Yes, I am simply tired. If you don’t mind, I will escort you back to Transporter Room One. I still have to talk with my Captain before I can regenerate." She did not look forward to that conversation.

"Of course," he agreed.

 

*****

 

Seven of Nine pressed the chime requesting admittance to the Captain's quarters. The door opened to reveal the Captain lounging on her long sofa with a glass in her hand as she was gazing out at the starfield.

The windows above the couch allowed the Captain to see by simply leaning back. It allowed her mind to drift or at least it used to. Lately, severe headaches and regret filled her mind, making it difficult to function let alone daydream.

"Captain." Seven greeted evenly as her blood quickened at the site of her ex-lover.

"Seven," She pinched the bridge between her nose. "We need to talk."

"Regarding?" Seven asked, playing dumb, figuring it was about her lapse in protocol again. She had taken the data crystal without permission.

"Regarding us," Janeway responded roughly.

Apparently the incident with the crystal was not foremost on her Captain's mind and any punishment temporarily rescinded, Seven estimated. "I see." However, she did not think anything had changed in her Captain's attitude, but she would give her the chance to prove it.

"Tell me what do you see when you look at me?" Seven asked her.

Janeway looked up at Seven for the first time since she entered her quarters. The longing pounded in her veins at how much she wanted to touch the young woman. "I see only you. How beautiful you are." She let her gaze drop. "I still desire you, you know? I still… care for you... more than anyone else on this ship." She added for emphasis.

"…But you are not in love me?" She asked fearfully.

"Seven," Janeway started to say delicately. "I enjoy your company. The time we spend together is… valuable to me. I--"

"Is it because I am borg?"

"Pardon me?"

"You imply that cannot love me. Is it because I was once Borg?!" Seven asked clearly upset.

Janeway swallowed hard. "That has nothing to do with it!"

"Then why?"

"I'm sorry, Seven. I truly am… but I… I can't… but it doesn't mean we can't have--"

"Then why did you initiate a sexual relationship with me?!" Seven questioned angrily interrupting her Captain.

Janeway had trouble getting the words out. Her mouth fumbled between opening and closing. "It felt like the right thing to do at the time." She finally responded softly.

"You were misguided!" Seven claimed, anger coursing through her.

"Maybe so! But you need to try and understand that I have needs like every other human being. It's just that… I'm the Captain. I cannot let myself fall in love with a member of my crew!"

"You never intended for us to be anything more…" Seven deduced softly, the knowledge wrenching her heart around in her chest. "You started this… knowing that." Seven felt utterly used and her heart ached because of it.

Kathryn shifted her gaze away from Seven's eyes. "I'm sorry." She managed to say. "I cannot love you emotionally, but I'm willing to love you physically. Why can't that be enough?" Janeway moved closer, desperately wanting to touch Seven.

Seven stepped back. "It is selfish. It can never be enough."

"Why did you have to go and fall in love with me?" Janeway accused her. "I mean you're a Borg for god sakes!"

Seven was taking in deep breaths at this revelation. "You thought I would not develop deep emotions because I was Borg. You knew I was ignorant in this. You used me for your own selfish purposes. You deceived me." Seven's pupils were large and black, the outrage churned inside her bones simultaneously as her heart was being crushed by this newfound knowledge.

Janeway was momentarily disturbed at why this crestfallen face of Seven's didn't bother her as much as it should. This arguing was fueling her body. An intense arousal cascaded over her. She wanted Seven in a bad way… Needed her.

"It wasn't like that. It's not what you think." Janeway tried to say, but failed at having a reasonable explanation for her actions.

"You seduced me. Coerced me into a relationship with you fully knowing that you could never give more. You risked my emotional stability to satisfy your isolation. YOUR loneliness!"

"That's enough!" Janeway yelled, closing the distance, intentionally invading the young woman's personal space to stare eye to eye with her. "I may have treated you unprofessionally, but I will not tolerate blatant disrespect."

"Disrespect Captain?" Seven mocked. "I'll leave that to you." Seven turned on her heels to leave.

"Please…" Janeway begged. "You don't understand."

Seven abruptly stopped. She was not immune to either Janeway's flirtations or her pain. Seven knew her defenses had been weakening because of the separation. She knew that the longer she kept hoping, the harder it would be for her in the long term.

"You are right, I do not." Seven agreed yet her options were few, her only real choice clear. She had to finally terminate the relationship completely. Reluctantly, she proceeded to leave.

Kathryn stepped into her path. "I need you…" She breathed out, unsure where this was coming from. Janeway was more sexually aroused than she could ever remember being and it seemed to hurt. Her head pounded more furiously than it had all week.

Seven's heart beat faster at her Captain's plea. Compassion filled her at the desperate tone of her former lover. She could not deny the effect it had on her physiology. She was having stronger than normal compulsions to go with the moment, to give in and be with her Captain so she knew it would not be a good idea to stay any longer.

"I must go. Good evening Captain." She divulged as gently as she could. She stepped around Janeway and forced herself towards the door, but the redhead grabbed her from behind and turned the young woman around briskly only to shove her against the wall.

Stunned by her Captain's actions, Seven did not resist. Gazing into Janeway's eyes, she saw a barbaric desire that captivated her completely. She was caught in Kathryn's lascivious glare, hook, line and sinker, as if Seven was bait that had been caught... helpless.

"I require you!" Janeway demanded focusing on Seven's plump lips. Moving in to claim the prize, she leaned her body against Seven's pressing hard against the blonde's pelvic region.

Seven's respiration spiked as Janeway latched onto the young woman's mouth. The redhead tried to consume the blonde in a single ardent kiss.

It wasn't long before, Seven joined in. Refusing to be subjugated, Seven fought her Captain for control during the heavy contact of lips and tongues. The blonde's own withheld needs and desires came out to overwhelm her. As they kissed emphatically, all resistance faded away. She wanted this as never before.

As strangely aroused as the young woman was, she was also angry and beyond hurt. A bad combination for a six foot former Borg drone. Seven being significantly stronger asserted this anger by dominating the smaller woman with her strength. Reaching up, the blonde grabbed Janeway's forearms and yanked them away easily just as she forcibly broke the kiss.

"You are not in control here Kathryn!" She challenged the Captain.

Janeway barred her teeth. "Yes that's right. I remember you wanting… needing… control over me." She mocked, not feeling the pain in her arms where Seven's hands gripped her like a vice.

"You shall not have it!" The blonde informed her.

"Control or sex?" Janeway remarked seductively with a grin.

"Sex is what you want?! Even now?!" Seven vociferated amazed, but indignant, still glaring at her former lover through a steamy gaze of her own hidden needs.

"Yes," Janeway hissed, "…always."

"You should be careful what you wish for Kathryn... " Seven warned her. The blonde's entire being was at war, literally boiling in conflict between the physical and the mental.

Truthfully, all Seven had to do was let go and walk out. Yet she couldn't bring herself to do so. Her senses were burning beyond her control. She thought she could smell the intensity of how stimulated Janeway was and found it incredibly intoxicating. Seven's own body pulsated from the need to be with her Captain yet her mind was still furious over their conversation and how she had been treated for so long.

Janeway could sense she was close to breaking the Borg's resolve. "I'm here… ready and willing… " She teased. "What are you waiting for? I'm giving you control Seven. So take me!" Kathryn leaned in to trail a moist tongue over Seven's lower lip. "You know you want it! You know you want me!"

Something inside Seven snapped. The words combined with the body heat she could feel so close to her inflamed her own arousal to epic proportions.

"Then sex is what you shall have!" The blonde stated menacingly, suddenly overcome with a feral need to satiate her own inner cravings.

Seven grabbed Janeway's uniform and tore at the fabric successfully shredding both the top and the blue tunic in one fluid motion. She then ripped off Janeway's bra and tossed it aside. Lowering her head, she found the rose-colored puckered nipples quickly and sucked on them diligently before inadvertently biting down in her eagerness. This action elicited a muffled scream from the Captain.

Seven hurriedly unzipped her biosuit, ripping it in the front in her frenzied state to get it off. She pushed it down to her stomach letting her breasts pop out from the restrictive clothing.

Just then Janeway covered Seven's mouth again and threw her now free arms around the borg's lithe neck. The passionate uncontrolled kiss became bruising in its intensity. In her haste, Janeway bit Seven's bottom lip, drawing blood. In response, Seven picked up the Captain's body, swirled her around and slammed her against the wall she just had her own back to.

Lost in the animalistic fever of the moment, both women were so overcome with uncontrollable lust and longing that they failed to realize just how rough they were being with other.

Seven broke the zipper off Janeway's pants and slipped her human hand into the heated area she craved. Seven held her there against the wall by shifting Kathryn's weight on her Borg enhanced arm, which was gripped firmly under Janeway's buttocks. The blonde pressed the redhead ruggedly against the wall forcing her weight against the smaller woman thus pinning her. Unable to wait any longer in her desire to take Kathryn fully, she positioned her hand inside the panties and plunged two fingers into the hot opening.

"Ahh!" Janeway cried out at the discomfort of the sudden penetration, but she knew it would become gratifying soon enough. She brought her legs up and clasped them around Seven's tapered waist, crisscrossing her shins together over Sevens buttocks to hold her body in place. She purposely left room for the larger woman to work her magic as she gyrated along with the motion.

Hands still clinging around Seven's neck, Kathryn's eyes bulged in anticipation when she saw the aroused breasts of her partner heaving up and down. Leaning forward, she suckled, nibbled and chewed heavily on the protruding bud until it was raw.

Losing concentration over the sudden pain, Seven jabbed up into her lover's sex. Janeway shrieked out loud, writhing in equal portions of pain and pleasure.

Moving her attentions upwards, Janeway began nipping at Seven's neckline. Suddenly, Kathryn bit down hard on Seven's neck as a Klingon would in marking their mates. Uncharacteristic of her nature, she tasted of her young lover's sweet, warm blood. Mine!

Seven flung her head back howling out at the discomfort. Some of the blood dribbled down her chest and back as she pressed in harder still with her weight causing Janeway to gasp for air as Seven lunged feverishly inside wet hungry walls.

Seven's borg enhanced arm was beyond fatigued causing both women to slide down the wall to the floor with a soft thud. Seven ended up with her legs spread out wide, underneath her lover, while Janeway straddled Seven, sitting in the gap of the blonde's upper thighs.

A split second passed before they renewed their vigor. With Seven's fingers still inside her, Janeway took the reprieve to wiggle her own fingers inside the biosuit to enter Seven's dripping folds.

Janeway advanced wildly into Seven and the young woman gasped at both the pleasure it created and the audacity of the older woman to not let Seven finish her own ministrations.

However, this did not deter the young woman as Seven renewed her tempo, the movement animated and primal.

They moved in at the same time to kiss heatedly, tongues slurping at their wantonness in the clumsy encounter. Both women tried to outdo the other in their need to satisfy their own unquenchable sex drive. Both women kissed wildly, grunting at the sensations, arching their hips into the motions as much as they could from their sitting positions.

Finally, the raw unrestrained act coalesced into a pulsating pressure and a throbbing tautness that exploded giving way to a succulent release.

Janeway climaxed first, her body spasming as she fell back against the wall. Her eyes rolled up in her sockets just as her heart hammered in her chest. Janeway's resulting ecstasy of ripples was like a much needed drug fix. The powerful orgasm brought her to a temporary high.

Seven quickly followed suit as rolling waves rocked her inner core. Her conscious and subconscious mind rested in harmony into a temporary blissful state, where even for her no thought was possible, just endless sensation and pleasure.

The euphoric sensation expanded to engulf the two women like never before, but there was no joining of hearts in love, no union of souls as such selfish, carnal pleasures always came with a high price.

They stayed immobilized for many moments until eventually the ecstasy wore off giving way to the harsh reality. Both women were sore, sporting cuts, abrasions, scratches and bruises. They were breathing heavily, sweat soaked, completely exhausted and… worst of all… ashamed.

Seven was the first to come to her senses. She noted Janeway flopped back against the wall sporting a slightly purplish bruise on her chin, both forearms as well as her chest and oblique muscles too. Her Captain still had her eyes closed breathing heavily.

"NO!" Seven uttered horrified at the damage she caused to the woman she professed to love. She put her hands over her face. "Oh, Kathryn… "

"Seven…" Janeway called lightly.

"Kathryn…?" Seven removed her hands to look up. She was over there in an instant, despite her own pain to survey the damage that she had done so carelessly.

"I don't feel so well," Janeway declared quietly while trying to smile at the absurdity of it all.

"I don't know what overcame me!" Seven exclaimed panicking.

"It's not… your fault… " Janeway acknowledged. She was demoralized by her emotional condition. "I can't… control this."

"Something is not right here." Seven proclaimed regaining some of her former equilibrium. She pulled up her biosuit despite knowing it was torn and not completely able to cover her torso. However, Janeway was still completely topless and her pants were ripped all the way down to the crotch area.

Thinking more of the Captain, she got up to retrieve a sheet from the bedroom, ripped it in half and draped a portion over the Captain who looked like she was losing consciousness, she was so still. Extremely worried that Seven had damaged the Captain severely, she quickly wrapped the other half of the sheet around herself and fumbled for her combadge that somehow ended up on the floor a dozen feet away.

"Seven of Nine to sickbay!"

"Sickbay here."

"Doctor! I… I need you to report to the Captain's quarters immediately." She glanced a guilty look at the Captain, who was still slumped motionless again the wall with her head lulling on its side and her eyes closed.

"I'm on my way." He replied and his form started materializing two seconds later. The Doctor couldn't believe what his holographic eyes were telling him. Both women were on the floor partially covered with a torn bed sheet, half-naked and sporting injuries. He noticed remnants of a ripped uniform nearby and Seven's biosuit looked ripped underneath the white sheet, she held up loosely.

He knelt down and scanned the unconscious Captain, raising an eyebrow sharply at the readings. The medical tricorder indicated severe bruising on both arms, several ribs and along the jawline on the right side. He also noted a damaged right kidney and a pinched neck nerve, which he hoped was the cause of the Captain's state of unconsciousness.

"What happened here, Seven!" He questioned sharply.

The former Borg did not respond, her eyes were glued to the Captain with a glazed over look that held such pain and guilt.

He moved towards Seven to scan her bio-readings, since she had injuries as well, but he could visually discern that they were not as severe as the Captain's.

"Seven?" He inquired to the non-responsive woman.

The Doctor's readings and the visual evidence were clear on what they had been doing mere moments before, but what could have instigated such a sexual encounter, the EMH could not fathom.

"Answer me!" the Doctor pressured her, his jaw tightening in trepidation at the conclusion his mind came to.

"Did you rape the Captain Seven?!" He asked her hotly as she stared blankly at Janeway.

However, this accusation awoke Seven from her daze as she met his eyes horrified. "No… " She breathed out softly, but with certainty. She turned back to the redhead, tears started to flow down her face. "No!" She repeated more strongly. "It was consensual, but… something was not right. Ever since we started our relationship… it has not been right!" Her was voice thick with remorse.

His eyes bulged in disbelief. "You two have been having sex like this for awhile!?"

"No, just this once." She stammered out disgusted with herself. "There was such a… need. I felt desperate, wanting."

Seven was clearly disheartened by what she had done. He put a hand on her shoulder to comfort her. "Well, you both are showing high levels of hormones and endorphins, which is an indication of… recently concluded intimate relations and severe exhaustion. I've got to get both of you to sickbay to heal your other injuries and to see if there is anything else here going on that is… precipitating this odd behavior."

"No!" Seven stood up wincing yet managing to glare at the Doctor. "No one must know of this. The Captain's reputation is on the line. Doctor, I need your word first that you will not disclose any information about what you have seen here, Captain's orders."

"You have my word." He said, "Computer, is anyone currently in sickbay?"

"No life signs are detected." The feminine voice responded.

"Computer, lock access to sickbay, on my authorization, pie omega zero, one seven." The computer chirped in response. "Satisfied?"

She nodded, becoming unsteady on her feet. The adrenaline was wearing off. "I am fatigued."

"I know… Computer, three to beam directly to sickbay."

 

*****

 

The Doctor easily fixed Captain Janeway's and Seven of Nine's physical wounds from their private escapade, but he knew the mental scars would take longer.

He decided to take Seven's word for what happened and agreed that something was very wrong with the two of them. But What? What could cause such brutal behavior between those two?

He didn't know what he was looking for yet, but was determined to get to the truth, not believing that Janeway and Seven could possibly engage in such a primitive display of intimacy while in their right minds. He did a complete physical on the Captain while she was asleep and on Seven whom sat despondently on an adjoining biobed.

Sitting in his glassed in office, located to the left of the two occupied biobeds, the Doctor went over the readings. The medical tricorder did not pick up the information that scrolled across his screen. Dumbfounded as to why, he continued to read the results of the physicals.

Seven and the Captain's hormonal levels were way too high to be naturally occurring. At three and ten times more than the average human, it was no wonder why they couldn't keep their hands off each other, yet that did not explain the violent behavior.

He had to find out the cause of this. What if it was contagious?! Spurned on by the threat of a possible epidemic, he retrieved samples and started analyzing their blood for any possible signs of an infectious disease or virus. He also ran cellular brain scans to rule out a possible alien intruder in disguise.

It would take at least an hour for the results and some time to go over them so he sent a still stupefied borg to the Cargo bay to regenerate, hoping that would do the despondent ex-borg some good. She looked at him with almost dead eyes and nodded before the Doctor sealed Cargo Bay Two, locked it down via the Comm link and transported her there. Her current emotional state was not encouraging and he hoped she would remember to undo the door seals after she replicated a new biosuit.

Focusing his attentions on the Captain, he pressed a hypospray to her neck to wake her up. Her eyes opened and darted around the room suspiciously.

"Doctor?" She asked confused, gripping the sheet that covered her. Seconds later she peered underneath. "Oh dear." She exclaimed her cheeks coloring.

"Doctor!" She pinned a hard look on him as she sat up clutching the sheet to her chest. "Why couldn't you treat me in my quarters?!"

The Doctor crossed his arms and returned a stern look of his own. "It was necessary." He said confidently. "I'm running some tests to figure out why this has happened. It will take awhile before I have any answers and I can't keep you here… like that." He took in an exasperated breath. "I also can't keep the seals to sickbay in place indefinitely. Someone else is bound to need medical attention, so you can return to your quarters for now. I will contact you the minute I have answers."

"What about Seven? Is she ok?" Janeway asked, a flicker of concern showing on her features.

"She's fine… physically."

Janeway cast her glance on the floor shaking her head. "…but not emotionally right?"

"It's too soon to tell."

"Where is she now?"

"I sent her back to the Cargo Bay to regenerate and I'm going to have to ask you to avoid her for now. It is imperative in light of the circumstances. I also want you to make yourself unavailable to the rest of the crew for at least an hour. I don't what to quarantine you here, because then I would have to notify the Commander… and I promised Seven I would keep this… confidential."

Even under these conditions, Seven still thought of her Captain's reputation and it made Janeway feel absolutely awful.

"I suggest you lock out all visitors to your quarters."

She looked up at his commanding tone, realizing that he was doing this to save her from an embarrassing explanation and she was grateful for that.

"Thank you, Doctor. Keep me informed." She responded in a soft voice with a hint of sadness before she ordered a site to site transport to her quarters.

 

*****

 

Two hours later Janeway beamed into sickbay per the Doctor's request. She headed for his office and sat down across from his desk. "Doctor?"

"Captain on your last away mission, did anything out of the ordinary occur?" he asked.

She squinted her eyes. "Out of the ordinary? Not that I can think of." She thought about the last one. It had been well over a month since she'd been on any planet.

Thinking back, she remembered a quick excursion to an M-Class planet with a small away team to collect some ore and minerals. "It was routine." She waved her hand, shrugging it off.

"You didn't come into contact with anything poisonous… rabid animals perhaps? Maybe fall down and cut yourself?" he inquired, tilting an eyebrow up.

Janeway thought about it for a moment before a discovery of sorts came to her. Her odd behavior towards Seven seemed to have begun a few days after she had returned from that routine mission. It was an expedition to gather dilithium and other rare minerals that they could use. She was the only one who had suffered a minor injury, accidentally brushing into a thorn bush. Mildly embarrassed over such a minor injury, she decided to heal the injury herself with a dermal regenerator instead of bothering the Doctor, who could be acerbic and condescending over the smallest of injuries.

"Well I did come across a plant that had pricked me." She said, a bit nonplussed.

"A plant pricked you?! Hmm, Did it break the skin?"

"Yes, slightly. I had a dermal regenerator, so I--"

"You didn't report this!?"

"No, it was as minor cut, so I didn't bother." She responded annoyed at his outburst.

He sighed. "I'm sorry Captain, but apparently you've been infected by this plant. That explains why the virus I uncovered has a cell structure that resembles flora DNA."

"Why didn't the bio filters pick it up during transport?"

"I don't know, but I would guess it's because the bio filters don't recognize its DNA pattern." The Doctor stated dissatisfied with Janeway's tenacity to play Doctor.

Finally, the magnitude of her error dawned on her. She had been careless.

"Is it contagious?" She asked immediately thinking of Seven and her crew.

"Not by casual contact. There has to be a significant exchange of bodily fluids."

"I see," she said her cheeks coloring to a nice crimson.

"I take it you've been experiencing strong headaches?" The EMH asked.

She was looking at him disconcerted. "Headaches, yes." She agreed.

The EMH was decidedly annoyed at the Captain for not reporting her injury and for hiding her debilitating headaches. He sighed heavily before continuing.

"I'm not surprised. The virus has mutated causing your body to release… certain hormones. These hormones have increased over the past month to approximately ten times higher than normally found in humans. Your body apparently can't defend itself against this virus on its own, except through the production of oxytocin. Dopamine and testosterone increase the production of oxytocin, which only occurs during an… intimate bodily function. Unfortunately, there's no way for your body to synthesize that much oxytocin no matter how… energetic you are."

Janeway listened half-heartedly, pondering.

"Besides that, your brain chemistry has been slightly altered. I can only guess it to be a side effect due to your human DNA. Those headaches and migraines were in direct relation to the increased hormones, which would have only been lowered by… intimate relations." The Doctor blushed.

Janeway considered his words and something snapped inside of her. "Are you telling me I had no choice? That a plant caused this?!" She was clearly disturbed by that.

"I'm afraid so, Captain."

"I refuse to believe that!" She shouted in denial.

"It is, however, the truth." He paused. "I understand it's difficult to… accept that there could be a situation that you as Captain have no control over, but this has nothing to do with who or what you are. It is a simple biological fact."

Janeway eyed him disdainfully. "So… sex holds back the headaches and keeps the virus from multiplying for awhile… " She remarked sarcastically. "That doesn't explain why I chose Seven. Why her? Why not… Chakotay or someone else?"

He suspected the reason had something to do with the Captain's buried emotions regarding the younger woman. There was also Seven's implicit trust in the Captain. Being so ignorant and unfamiliar with the customs of dating, courtship and mating practices, she might have given into a relationship with her Captain under less than ideal circumstances.

"I would imagine… " the Doctor said carefully. "Subconsciously that you might be attracted to her… On some level."

Her gaze hardened on his holographic face.

"I'm the Captain, I can't be attracted to anyone under my command."

He should have expected this, the Doctor realized her emotional state wasn't entirely normal either, but he hadn't explained that to her… yet.

"Can't? Even a Captain, has emotional needs."

"I should have been able to resist. I used her. It is my fault that this happened and I infected her." She claimed appalled at her weakness.

Now the Doctor was confounded. "You can't be expected to resist this! I would have figured this knowledge would have given you comfort."

"Comfort?!" She responded exasperated.

"Yes! After what you two did to each other!" He yelled. "Do you honestly think both of you would have done that to each other under normal circumstances!?"

Janeway glowered at him. "I initiated a relationship with Seven based on… an increase in hormones causes by a virus! No mind control, no alien presence!" Janeway argued, but as she forced herself to think about it, unshed tears came to her eyes.

"Actually that's not entirely accurate. The chemical residue I found in your hypocampus, that causes these headaches also causes emotionally instability. I've analyzed this chemical compound in the past. It has been known to cause strong negative emotions in tests I've seen. Anger and fear being the most common."

There was a moment of silence as Janeway speculated on the accuracy of the Doctor's statement.

"There could some truth to that." She reluctantly admitted.

"Like I said, you can't blame yourself. It was beyond your control."

Janeway didn't respond. She dropped her head to gaze numbly at the carpeted floor of sickbay. All she could think about was Seven.

"So," she had to ask. "What's the prognosis?"

"I do have something to alleviate the virus, Captain."

Shocked, the Captain blinked a few times, ruminating on the idea that the Doctor had a possible cure to her affliction. She raised her head, hopeful. "You can reverse this?"

"Yes, but it will take a couple of days. If I don’t, eventually you will lose total control yourself. It will probably drive you insane…"

"Not to mention… severe sexual frustration." He added jokingly.

She tilted her head in irritation, but ignored the remark. "I've been like this over a month. I don't think a couple of days will make that much difference."

He shrugged, "I'm going to have to give both you and Seven a dosage twice a day for three days. I still don't think you should see her until after the entire three days has passed." He lowered his head for a moment as he pressed the hypospray to her neck. "After that time, though, I hope you two talk about… what happened. It won't be healthy to pretend nothing happened between you two. It did and she's going to need to come to terms with it."

"So am I. The worst of it all is that I still want her. Even though, I can't feel much emotionally. I know I should in my head, but every time I try I can't. All I can think of is losing my command, of what the crew will think of us." She finished in a low, tone.

"Those might be realistic fears that you have buried in you psyche. We can discuss it when you better."

"Doctor I don't need a shrink, I need--" She was almost going to say her name.

"Captain," the EMH warned. "You must stay away from her."

Janeway managed to give him a look of subtle worry before the command mask came back. "I will Doctor… and when this is over, I'll try and talk to her about it."

"Good," he replied. "At times like these, I wish we had a counselor onboard."

Janeway sighed.

"Take care of Seven for me." She told him lightly and left.

Just in case his Captain was unable to keep her word, he had the computer keeps tabs of her whereabouts.

 

*****

 

Three days passed quickly and then a whole week with Seven and Janeway speaking to each other only in staff meetings or when absolutely necessary. Both women were feeling exceptional amounts of guilt and shame. Having difficulty with how to rectify the situation, they both brooded in they own misery, alone.

Janeway didn't spend much time on the Bridge, she preferred retiring to the sanctity of her Ready Room, where she could mope alone away from prying eyes. She didn't get many reports done, but she didn't care either. She was growing increasingly despondent over the situation.

The truth of the matter was she didn't know what to say to Seven. After what she had done to the young woman, she wouldn't be surprised if Seven detested her.

I could have irrevocably damaged her progress in reclaiming her humanity! Dammit! She chastised herself. Now that the virus was completely eradicated from her system, Janeway was painfully aware of many things.

She knew she was attracted to Seven. I don't need a damn virus to know that!

As a Starfleet officer, she was aware of all the rules she broke because of the virus and it disgusted her. She wasn't referring to the sex they had shared... despite that last encounter their moments together were… memorable.

No, she was referring to her actions before hand.

She had acted unprofessionally by seducing a woman who was but a child emotionally. Ignorant and innocent in this, Seven had trusted her and Kathryn used her influence to convince her to sleep with her. And the virus was her only defense. The only reason, she could live with herself after what she had done.

Janeway was now quite aware of all her fears, but strangely none of it seemed to matter to her.

Only one fear remained. The fear of hurting Seven… again.

There was concern that Seven would not give her another chance and that it was too late to acknowledge the truth.

 

*****

 

In Cargo Bay Two, Seven sat quietly on the dais of her alcove in deep thought. She was relieved in a sense that what had occurred was not Janeway's fault. The Captain was not herself and could not be blamed for what happened. It was amazing the Captain showed as much restraint as she had.

Over time with continuous intimate contact, Seven became infected as well. Her nanoprobes were able to stymie the virus for many weeks before she too succumbed to it. That explained why she had given into the desire during that last heated encounter. That knowledge helped with some of Seven's emotional pain, but a new kind of pain had established its ugly presence in her heart.

The virus infection also meant that Janeway acted in a manner she absolutely would not have when she initiated intimacy between them. The Doctor had explained to Seven that she would have been the logical choice because she was not in Starfleet.

Not the only choice or the first choice, but the logical choice.

Captain Janeway picked Seven because it was legal. She couldn't be brought up on charges for sleeping with a civilian. It was the most convenient and broke no regulations. It was her Starfleet training that guided her while she was under such extreme physical duress.

Seven swallowed hard. There could be no romantic partnership between the two women. Janeway did not love her and never would. All the reasons were now made apparent. Seven couldn't blame her Captain for what should never have occurred.

The blonde felt tears sting her eyes. Painful as this realization was, it would be more painful if Seven could not at least repair their friendship. She enjoyed Janeway's company and felt she still needed the older woman's guidance in a number of things. The blonde knew that Janeway was an important part of her life and she would not except losing that as well.

 

*****

 

"Seven of Nine!" Captain Kree greeted her loudly while hovering over her.

Seven was sitting by herself at a table located in the corner of the Mess Hall, when the alien came over and disturbed her peace.

"Captain Kree," Seven greeted unenthused.

"I was hoping I would see you again."

She sipped her nutritional supplement as she perused her PADD.

"May I join you?"

"I…" She had almost told him she would rather be alone, but she didn't want to be rude. "Yes," she replied with restraint. If you must.

He sat down and watched her while she studied.

Seven occasionally keyed something into her small PADD until she could not stand his staring any more. "Is there something you wish to discuss?"

"I will be leaving shortly. We are almost out of Visaati space… and I was wondering if I could have a picture of you."

Seven frowned. "What for?"

"You have a striking resemblance to the 'Stroyka.'"

"I am NOT your 'Stroyka'." Seven remarked tersely.

"My crew might mutiny if you don't." His eyes held a twinkle.

"How will a photograph prevent that?"

"because they want to see you," he said honestly. "However, I could ask Captain Janeway for permission to allow my crew to visit Voyager in small groups so they may see you in person instead?"

Seven's aggravation was growing. "That will not be necessary. I will send you the picture you require later after I return to the Cargo bay."

She went back to perusing her PADD but Kree did not leave. He rested his hand under his chin gazing at her studiously.

"Is that all?" Seven asked annoyed that he would not leave her alone. She required solitude not company.

"Pardon my forwardness, but you do not seem yourself lately."

"In what way?" She inquired.

"You look sad… your eyes hold pain, like you've lost something precious."

"I have not!" She strongly opposed the suggestion. A few heads turned at her raised voice.

"I do not believe you." He countered politely, raising an eyebrow.

Seven looked directly at Kree, her gaze temperamental. "Captain Kree," Seven said flustered. "I must regenerate now." She got up and left not waiting for him to reply. He watched her leave then quietly followed as she made her way to Cargo Bay Two.

Upon arriving at her destination, she quickly put the PADD she had been carrying down on her terminal and turned to greet her uninvited quest.

"Captain Kree!" She called out with severe irritation as the doors parted. "Why are you following me?!"

"Because you wish to talk, yes?"

"No I wish to be alone." She asserted.

"I don't believe you." He said, concern etched on his face.

Seven's agitation was reaching a fever pitch. "Why are you doing this?! Is it because I remind you of the Stroyka?"

"No," he answered, but her statement struck a nerve in the normally cheerful alien Captain. "However, you do remind me of someone special who acted in this same manner when something was bothering her. As such, I feel compelled to assist in any way I can."

"Your help is not wanted." She narrowed her eyes with contrariness.

"It's obvious you're in pain and I believe it involves your Captain."

Seven glared at him. "Leave," she said with quiet force, her tone threatening. Kree could feel the frostiness coming from her and knew he had overstayed his welcome.

"Your wish is my command," he politely turned to leave but kept talking his back to her as he walked towards the exit. "Consider this… true love only comes along once if we are fortunate… and blessed. I lost someone special last year and the last memory I have of her is an argument between us." He paused at the door, but did not turn around. "I never told her how much I loved her… and I never found out if she loved me back. I hope you never regret something like that."

"I told her!" Seven bellowed protesting that possibility fiercely. A tear fell down her right cheek.

He turned around to face her angry defiant pose, looking puzzled.

"She does not reciprocate." Seven added quietly.

"I don't know what has occurred between you two, but I believe she cares more than you realize." He suggested softly. He felt the vibe between the two women when they were in the same room together. He was convinced they both loved each other.

"You do not understand!" Seven spoke through clenched teeth and restrained rage.

She did not want to relive the pain by having to explain to Kree how she had been thoroughly manipulated by her Captain. To Janeway's credit it was an act done while under the influence of a virus. An act that under ideal circumstances wouldn't have happened. Yet, Seven now had to comes to terms with it.

The inexperienced former Borg had to adapt back to friendship when the young woman wanted so much more having fallen in love with her Captain.

"I don't need to understand exactly what has happened between the two of you. I can see it with my own eyes. She has been moping about for the last week just as you have my dear." With that said, he bowed to a stunned Seven of Nine and exited the Cargo Bay.


Continued on page 2 >>>

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