Set sometime during the first half of the series.
Answer to Imzadi_All Summer Challenge #2.I decided to take a different route Ė absolutely no mention of the
obvious subject matter that came to mind when the challenge was issued.
Use the phrase, "It's larger than I thought!"
2) Ask the question, "What's that smell?"
3) Use the phrase, "Tail of a comet"
4) Mention a chocolate dessert.
5) The story needs to contain the word "spurs"
6) Use the phrase, "Is that Star Fleet issue..."
do they think they are fooling?" Lt. Hetherington broke the lull in the
group's conversation, speaking to no one in particular.His companions followed his gaze to a far table that was set off from
the main bustle of Ten Forward.Commander
Riker and Counselor Troi were engaged in what appeared to be a very intimate
conversation.Their heads close
together, the conversation was punctuated by occasional light laughter.
Lt. T'San was the only one at the table that seemed uninterested."It's really none of our business Erik."
"He's right though.They
are about as subtle as the tail of a comet."The others at the table shot Lt. Brelarc a strange look."What?It's something
my Bolian grandmother used to say."
"Well, I don't think that they are anything more than friends.I'll admit that they are close, but anything more would be
took a sip of her drink and turned away from the topic of their conversation."We really should stop staring at them before they realize they
are being watched."
"I doubt they are even aware there is anyone else in Ten Forward
right now."A small sigh
escaped Lt. OíConnor's lips as she placed her chin in the palm of her hand,
her eyes never leaving the couple in the corner."Do you guys think the stories about them are true?"
blue-skinned humanoid's curiosity was obviously piqued.
Hetherington gave the Bolian a look of disbelief. "Don't tell me
you haven't heard them Brelarc.I
thought it was common ship wide gossip."
Keara OíConnor leaned in closer to Brelarc and whispered, "It's
been said that the two of them share a torrid romantic past."
T'San raised an eyebrow."Don't
tell me you actually believe the stories."
"Actually, I know for a fact that they are true," Erik
declared. "At least the ones that I have heard."
"Oh really, and why is that."
Before he could explain, the waiter came with their dinner orders. As
he sat the dish down in front of Lt. Hetherington, a strong odor assaulted
smell?" Keara fought down her urge to gag.
Erik put on a mock look of offense. "It's called lutefisk, an old
Terran dish from a region that was known as Scandinavia.I was feeling a little bit home sick I guess." He scooped up a
fork full of the foul smelling fish and offered it to Keara. "Want to try
Putting her hand up to prevent the fork form getting any closer to her,
she shook her head adamantly."I
think I will stick with my pasta and Terran chocolate mousse, thank you."
Lt. Hetherington greedily shoved the piece of fish into his mouth."You really are missing out."
"I'll have to take you word on that."
The quartet enjoyed their meal in a comfortable silence until Brelarc's
curiosity got the best of him."OK,
I have to hear these stories.I
hate being kept out of the loop and always being the last to hear about all
the good stuff."
"Well," Keara began, "From what I hear, the two of them
met while Riker was stationed on Betazed, they had a steamy, passionate affair
and Riker ended up breaking her heart and leaving her for his career. But
that's not even the best part --"
"Let me tell the story Keara," Erik interrupted. "I'm
the one that has connections to the events in question."
Vulcan's deadpan chimed in. "And what exactly are those
"If you must know, my older cousin's ex was a security officer
stationed on Betazed when everything happened."A satisfied smirk spread across Lt. Hetherington's face and Lt. T'San
turned her attention back to her meal.
"So what happened?"Brelarc's
tone contained his obvious impatience.
"Riker was stationed to Betazed while he awaited his new
assignment.The planet had been
having some problems with Sindareen raiders so Starfleet security was beefed
up."Erik paused his story
to make sure he had a captive audience.When
he was satisfied that his friends were hanging on his every word he continued."According to Andrew, my source Ė"
"And they say Vulcanís donít have a sense of humor."Keara shot her roommate a sharp look."You were saying, Erik?"
The young Lieutenant continued his tale."Andrew said there was an incident where some Sindareen raiders
kidnapped Deanna.Their ship was
shot down and crash-landed in the jungle.The search party combed the jungle for days and found no trace of
either Deanna or the one surviving raider.Everyone wanted to give up, but Riker insisted that she was still alive
and that it was his duty to find her.He
refused to give up."
Keara let out a small sigh."That
is so romantic."
A slow smile consumed Lt. Hetheringtonís face."The story gets even better.Andrew was a part of the search and rescue effort and was monitoring
the base when the call came in form Riker that Deanna had been recovered.
According to him, from the location that was logged when the call was made, it
should have taken the two of them a couple of days to reach the rendezvous,
but they didnít make it back to the base for almost six."
"What took them so long?"Lt. Brelarc interrupted.The
look of confusion that danced across his blue features caused his two human
friends to both stifle a laugh.
Erik leaned in closer. "Well, that part is still speculation since
no one was with them while they were in the jungle, but Andrew swears that
something happened between them.He
has no proof, but he could have sworn that during the transport back to the
city, the two of them were having entire conversations without saying a
"That is illogical.Commander
Riker is human and Counselor Troi is only half Betazed.Telepathic communication between them would be genetically
"I didnít think you
were paying attention TíSan." Erikís teasing tone was always trying
to get some sort of reaction out of the stoic Vulcan.
Lt. OíConnor could not hold back her laughter."Itís funny the way he spurs you on Ė or at least makes a
valiant attempt.He really should
know by now that he is never going to be successful."
"You doubt me Keara?I
can do just about anything when I put my mind to it Ė including spurring an
emotional reaction out of a Vulcan or evenÖ" He waved a hand through
the air, trying to think of another outrageous claim to make.Finally, he settled on, "Ö going on a date with Counselor
This last declaration almost caused Keara to choke on the bite of
dessert she had just placed in her mouth."Itís bigger than I thought!"Her exclamation earned her a confused look from Erik. "Your ego I
mean.Is that Starfleet issue or
did you develop it all on your own?"Brelarc joined in her laughter as Lt. Hetherington sat there slack
"You doubt my abilities to charm the opposite sex?" Erik was
on the defensive.
"I doubt your abilities to charm a very unattainable shipís
counselor.Not only is she a
senior officer, but she is way out of your league." Keara raised her
hand, silencing his protest. "None of your smooth lines will ever work on
Erik stopped to consider her last statement. "Yea, youíre
probably right.Besides, I
donít think I would want to step on Commander Rikerís toes."
The conversation fell silent again as the four friends finished up
their meals. Keara's eyes never left the couple in the corner. After placing
the last bite of chocolate mousse in her mouth Keara stated, "I just have
a feeling that those two are going to end up together."
Erik nodded his head. "You can almost see the emotional connection
between them like it's a physical, tangible thing."
The group gave the young Lieutenant a collective look of surprise, but
it was Keara who spoke up. "I didn't think you believed in that sort of
thing Erik.I would have never
pegged you for a romantic."
Taking a long drink from his glass, Lt. Hetherington took his time to
answer. "I'm not usually." He shrugged. " I guess it's just
that particular piece of ship wide gossip that has got me thinking."