Everything that was ever important to him, or had ever held any meaning to
his life, was gone within an instant. It was like his worst nightmare had finally
come true. It happened while they were on an away missionon a planet of terrorists.
He heard her scream once, and call for him. *Imzadi, I need you!* He had run
with lightening speed to her aid, but that wasn't fast enough. A phaser blast
had claimed her innocence before he could get to her. *Deanna!!* he cried. He
dashed to her side, and held her wounded body in his arms. She had looked up
at him, afraid and tired somehow. "Imzadi..." she pleaded.
"Hang on, love. Just hold on, okay?" Her eyes grew heavy, and her body ached beyond repair.
She was rushed immediately to sickbay upon arrival on the Enterprise. But all the medicines, and all the procedures in the universe could not spare her life. Fate had already determined her destiny, and it wasn't-as she and he both had so whole-heartedly believed-to be with him. Her friends-her family-stood looking on the other side of her room in sickbay, hoping she would make it. But it didn't look good.
The doctor, her best friend, broke the news, "Will...she's...gone." She could hardly bring herself to say the words. He had already known all along. He had felt her spirit fade away while she was in his arms on the planet. He now stood at her side by the bed, and held her hand, "Deanna, please Imzadi...don't leave me...It can't end this way..." Tears had come freely as he spoke.
He could feel his whole universe began to shatter around him. Her beautiful face was pale. She was entirely motionless. Her life had ceased to exist. Gone. Just like that. "I...can't...live...without you, Imzadi..." He gathered her body in his arms once more, and took her from the bed. The others just watched on, waiting to see what he would do. Then, he fell to his knees cradling her, and sobbed into her chest. "No," he whispered. "No," he said again, the anger and hurt rising in him. "NO!!!" he finally screamed with whatever strength he had left.
Everyone in that room, and proabably everyone in the entire galaxy could hear-if not feel-his cry of desperation and anguish. It was the most torturing sound ever known to man. And from that day on, life for both Deanna Troi and Will Riker had ended.
I said I loved you...but I lied... I wanted to tell you...I meant so much more... Death in her eyes...
It came while he was rescuing her. So like him, willing to sacrifice himself for her. All the other times that he had risked his life for hers, it had never ended like this. Not in death.
A cave had collapsed on her, and he had come tearing in there like a mad bull. His eyes were so full of determination and courage. His best qualities. When he got to her, there seemed to be a glow around him. He was her angel coming to give her salvation. The sight was so precious, she almost cried. He picked her up in his arms, and she clung close to him as they went out of the cave into safety. She was so filled with emotion in that moment, she looked into his eyes, confirmed his feelings, and kissed him passionately. If only she had known it would be their last time together.
An unknown assailant had come up from behind him, stabbing him in the back. He dropped her in his pain. The villian had disappeared as quickly as he had appeared in a haze of a transporter beam. "Will!" she cried. His body had collapsed to the ground, with blood streaming down his back.
"Deanna..." he could hardly comprehend what had happened. She had gone to him, ripped pieces of her uniform off, and tied them around his wound to try and stop the bleeding.
"Troi to Enterprise...Emergency beam up!!" She cradled him in her arms. He just looked up at her with his eyes half-closed. She already knew he was drifting away. But she was determined not to give him up so easily. "Imzadi," she spoke lovingly to him, "I'm here. It's okay. I'm going to get you help. I won't leave you, I promise."
Even through his pain, he had found a way to smile to her, small as it was. They then vanished in a flash of light. Will only had three seconds of life left by the time they reached sickbay...and he hadn't made it.
Deanna had tried to hide her pain in those last few moments, but she couldn't. The pain that was obvious on the outside, did her no justice to the suffering she was going through on the inside. She had climbed into his bed just moments after the doctor had declared him dead, and cried her heart's torment into him. The sight the others saw was eerie. She picked his head up in her arms, and rocked him gently. She stayed rocking him and crying for awhile. And then, from withing the deepest sorrows of her spirit and her soul-she had screamed and let out the pain that consumed her. She did not stop for an entire hour.
But the pain didn't stop there. His death was the nightmare that came to her every night. And every night, it was the same over and over. She was holding him in her arms, the blood covering her hands, and he was looking up at her with glazed eyes. "Help me, Imzadi...help me..."
His body shook with convulsions for a few minutes, then with a horrifying jerk, it stopped-along with his heart-and he drifted off into that dark, cold abyss of a lonely death. "NO!" she screamed into an empy world, "Don't you dare take him from me!! Don't you dare let him die alone!!!" And just 'you' was, Deanna never knew. But no matter what, each time the terror came, nothing she could say or do could bring him back from that place she had so desperately tried to salvage him from.
She awoke from the nightmare in a sweat, as always. The worst part was, that every time she came out of it, she automatically turned to her opposite bedside-expecting to find him there-but was always, always, disappointed. It was the most painful feeling of loss and loneliness one could ever feel. Especially for one who must live the rest of their life without their Imzadi.