Disclaimers: Yes, I own Andromeda… What? I don't? ::sighs:: Oh yeah.
…That's right. Tribune does. …I guess that means I don't own Star Trek
either, huh? ::big sigh:: Okay, I don't own anyone from Star Trek either.
Spoilers: ummm… none ::grins::
Archive: Yes, please… but ask first : )
Author's Notes: This story takes place ONLY during season one. …So, Trance
is still purple and DOES have her tail… and she's still cute ::grins:: This
is the first in a series of Fics I'm going to write… The series starts off
in Season 1 and goes from there… Kind of like an Alternate Universe
Andromeda or something… ::big smile and winks::
Special Notes: This Fic was inspired by the epi "His Way" of Star Trek Deep
"Her Lavender Way"
By Rae the Hyper Purple Girl
You're nobody until somebody loves you,
so find yourself somebody to love!
Lyrics From a 1960s Earth Song
Trance smiled to herself as she curled up in her large silvery beanbag
chair in her quarters, her tail wrapped comfortably around her ankles. The
lights were dimmed to a calming, relaxing level that played beautifully
with the furniture in the room, casting pale shadows across the walls and
floor. …It had been quite a day on Andromeda and she was tired.
The girl was just about to drift to sleep, when a quick, unexpected burst
of bright light flashed through the darkness. Her eyes immediately shot
open. …That kind of thing could only mean one thing: trouble. "Andromeda,
engage the privacy mode thing, please," she requested instantly.
Andromeda's hologram form blinked into being momentarily. "Privacy mode
activated," she reported quickly, and then was gone again.
Trance cautiously stood up and moved swiftly to the wall. As she tapped a
button and the lights came on, her suspicions were confirmed.
"Why the pained face, Trance?" Q asked with forced hurt from his seat on
her bed. "I thought you would be happy to see me again."
She regarded him with amplified misgiving and clasped her hands rigidly
behind her. "I… Why …are you here, Q?"
"You mean instead of harassing my human pets?" he asked, smirking. But
Trance just frowned more and planted her feet anxiously, so he continued,
"Why, I'm here to see you! Catch up on old times."
"Old times," she repeated dryly, looking away. …That was one thing she
didn't want to be reminded of.
Q saw her shy away from that, so he decided to try another topic. …Maybe it
would prove to stimulate a more interesting and amusing response from the
other immortal being. "So…what is it your boyfriend likes to call you
again? …His… Purple Princess?"
The Purple One gasped in surprise at first and felt her cheeks growing hot.
…But as she took it all in, the girl glared at him fiercely. "What
Q forced shock. "My dear, I am surprised at you!" The sarcasm was so thick
in his voice, Trance was surprised he didn't choke on it. …But then again,
he was Q…so choking wasn't something he really worried about that much.
"You mean you haven't told the little fellow?"
Trance calmly stared him straight in the eyes -- something she would never
have done to any other without nervously breaking the gaze soon after. "I
was just about to take a nap, and I'm sure you have better things to do
that be mean and annoying, so—"
"And this is the thanks I get" he muttered, shaking his head sorrowfully.
"! …I guess I should have expected this from a deserter. …But I thought I'd
try to make peace with you and have a little fun…" Q exclaimed in a hurt
tone. "I suppose the Continuum with just have to—"
He grinned, the hurt suddenly wiped from his features and her anger
ignored. Now he had her attention again. "We still don't understand why you
chose to live with these…mortals. Some of your siblings still hope you'll
return to us someday."
"I'm not going back! I would think that would be clear now. …After… After I
learned to care about these people," she sounded so vulnerable right then.
…It scared her. "They NEED me here," Trance added with certainty and
firmness. "Now, please go. I need to take-"
"-A nap. Yes, so you say. But there is still the little matter of…why I am
Trance just moaned and slid back to a sitting position in her beanbag. He'd
been so much trouble that the sparkly purple girl had given up caring about
that. "And that is?" she prompted softly.
Q leaned in closer to her until his face was centimeters from her ear and
whispered, "I have a present for you."
Harper peered at the computer console, marveling at the data being
displayed on the surrounding screens. "Trance, baby, this is amazing! Over
4oo percent more information is lodged in that little chip than I'd
expected to find…" He babbled on and on about its various astounding
features, but Trance didn't understand any of it. …Too technical.
She kept a blank look on her face, hiding the uneasiness she had felt ever
since Q had given the chip to her. "What is it, Harper? …What's it do?"
The engineer glanced at her, but quickly returned his attention to the
displays showing the program files. "I'm guessing an advanced hologram or
something. …Maybe an A.I. …I'm not sure yet. But whatever it is, it's a
cosmically huge program." Harper paused, taking one last look at the data
before turning all of his attention to the sparkly purple babe. …girl. "So,
ugh, where'd you get this, Trance?"
"That's not important," she insisted quickly, avoiding the question. …She
couldn't exactly tell him the truth. That would have meant talking about Q…
And HE was a subject that could have led to …other… things if they found
out too much about him. …And if she couldn't tell him the truth, then she
wasn't going to tell him anything at all. "Can you make it work?"
"Oh yeah. I'll make it work, baby. I am, after all, a freakin' genius!"
Small groups of nostalgic humans, dressed in 1960s earth attire, were
scattered throughout the spacious Observation Deck of the Andromeda at
little, round, nicely dressed tables. The focus of the room was oriented
toward the front center, where a band was set up. Each and every one of
them glowed with the light only a hologram could produce.
"No… They can't take that away… from… me!"
The warm soothing tone of the singer lingered in the air after he had
finished the song, transferring the rich, pleasant feeling to everyone in
the audience. …Including the holographic members, who stood up and clapped
to show their appreciation.
"Nice program, Harper. It creates a nice atmosphere…" Dylan commented with
a wide smile.
"Yeah! Great program. …You never cease to amaze me," Beka added.
Tyr rolled his eyes at their words. …This had been such a waste of time!
Rommie's android avatar glared at the holographic audience. Were they
REALLY necessary? …No, she decided. They used up too much short-term
memory. In another instant, they disappeared with the blink of an eye and
the room was suddenly considerably quieter. Rommie sighed, relieved. …Yes,
that was much better.
"Actually, I can only take credit for making it run. …Trance is the one who
found it," he told Beka and Dylan, smiling at the little purple girl to his
"Allow me to introduce myself," the singer said, having made his was to the
back of the room to talk to the little group. "The name's Vic. …Are you
friends of Julian?"
"Julian?" Beka repeated dryly.
"Yeah, doll face. You don't know him? …Nice guy. You'd like him."
"You have such a pretty voice," Trance interrupted. …Great. That was the
last thing they needed to hear about: Q's little "friends"…
Vic smiled at the lovely purple girl and graciously thanked her, bowing
slightly. Then he took a moment to take a good look at the individual
people in this group. …The Purple One. She seemed nice. …Shy, but nice.
…His eyes moved to the blonde man standing beside her. Hmm… Another one of
those "better not comment" things happening here. He made a note of that
with a sad little shake of his head as he looked to the others. …Good. This
would be easy enough.
With a friendly voice, he turned to Dylan, "Paley, you miss her… But there
are other fish in the sea. …And if she's never coming back, maybe its time
to take a good look around you?" His eyes darted to Rommie, then back to
Dylan's eyes went wide. Woah. …Okay, that was weird. Hunt quickly tried to
regain his composure, forcing the flustered expression from his face.
"Doll face, being stiff is no fun! …Loosen up a little. It's okay. …They're
not all out to hurt ya," Vic told Beka, who gasped and grunted
unattractively in response. Ha. …Experience had taught her differently.
…One of those things it had drilled into her was not to trust easily.
Trance was rather enjoying the experience and giggled at her friends'
reactions. This was just too funny!
Tyr scoffed and excused himself before the singer could comment on him, but
Vic just chuckled. "Talk about square."
His attention was drawn to Rommie, who smiled expectantly. This was also
amusing her. "And Sweetheart, don't let the other sides of your personality
rule your life. This is about you not what they want. Just trust your
heart," Vic told her with a knowing twinkle in his eye.
Vic turned to Trance and Harper. "And as for you two…" But he caught
himself in time. …Wow. That had been close. Too close. He scolded himself
for that. There had been too many close calls lately. …Too many. "Nah.
Trance and Harper exchanged curious and questioning glances, each hoping
the other knew what he had been talking about.
"What were you going to say?" Harper wondered.
"Not now, kids. Save it for later," Vic insisted with a charming, yet
Dylan yawned, and Rommie noticed. "The hour is late. You should all get
some rest. …Especially you two," she said to Beka and Harper. "Unless you
think the cargo run can wait for a few days?" …But she didn't like that
idea, and her expression clearly discouraged it.
Beka nodded. "No…you're right."
They all turned to file out of the room, but came to a sudden stop when
Vic's friendly voice called.
"Oh…and next time, remember this is a classy joint." He gestured to the
audience, unaware of the fact that they had been gone for quite a while.
"No more pajamas! It's suits and pants for the gents, and dresses—" The
hologram closed his eyes as the information was fed to him by the main
computer via Rommie's request. "Ugh, scratch that. …I guess this will be
fine. …As long as you folks don't mind if I stick to my threads," he said,
recovering with a smile.
Dylan chuckled and followed the others out of the room. "Close program."
The following day was uneventful enough for Trance, so she spent her time
on Med. Deck rearranging and organizing the equipment and stuff. There
wasn't much of that to do, though, so the girl took her time to make sure
the work would last the rest of the day.
…She wasn't really in the mood to talk to her plants after the incident
with Q. …He really bothered her. …There had to be another, more dangerous,
reason for his presence on the Andromeda two nights ago. …Dropping by to
leave a present sounded very …uncharacteristic of him to Trance.
And what about that hologram person? …Boy, that was weird. Vic, wasn't that
his name? …Yeah. …That's right. He seemed friendly enough and non-
threatening… But she was going to keep an eye on him, nevertheless.
In fact, she wasn't really in a talking mood at all. Her thoughts kept
bringing her back to the Q Continuum and her people… and saying anything
about them would have proven a mistake. Even though her friends had all but
given up trying to learn about her past and species, she was well aware of
the curiosity they all held for the topic. Especially Harper. …That was a
very bad thing. Finding out about her would have been…confusing for them
and would've only brought new problems to their doorstep. That much, at
least, she was sure of.
Her thoughtful moment was interrupted by the soft swoosh of the doors to
Med. Deck sliding open, and Dylan's confident steps thumped on the floor
until he saw her. "Trance," he began, holding his forehead carefully in one
hand with his eyes painfully closed. "Could you give me something for a
Trance nodded, "Sure. …Have a seat on the medical bed while I get the nano-
bots ready." With that, she turned and started programming the correct
configuration into the computer that controlled the little painkillers.
Dylan hopped up on the bed and looked around the medical bay, noting how
clean and orderly it was. "That was an interesting hologram, wasn't it?" he
"Uh-huh," she agreed absently, still punching buttons and telling the bots
what to do.
"I've never seen anything like it. …Even in the days of the Commonwealth."
She started paying more attention at that point, as the computer was
reprogramming the bots. …Ooo… Bad, bad topic. "Well, there have been a lot
of technological advances since then," she said quickly, trying to dismiss
the strange holographic technology.
"Like?" Hunt asked pointedly, a playful note in his voice. "Where did you
'find' that, anyway? …You haven't left the ship for at least a week or
"That you know of," Trance added for him, grinning to herself as she put
the nano-bots into the syringe and loaded the needle. "So, why do you have
a headache?" she asked, changing the subject just like she usually did when
things like this came up.
"Hey! A shot? …For a headache? Trance, I hate shots," he complained.
"Just answer the question!" she teased. They had done this to her often
enough when she'd refused to tell them something. …It was amusing to be on
the other side of the argument for a change.
"Question? Oh." He'd completely forgotten about her question at the sight
of the needle. "I walked in on an argument between Beka and Harper about
the mission before they left. …Mr. Harper thought it would be all right to
take a small detour…and I guess Beka didn't think so. …One word: yelling.
Lots of it."
Trance giggled at the confused look on her Captain's face when the syringe
"Trance—Ow!" He was about to ask her about it, when her tail appeared
beside his shoulder and gave him the shot before he could get out of the
She just smiled sweetly at him. "There. That headache should go away soon."
The Purple Girl walked back into the back to put the medical stuff she'd
gotten out away, thinking that Dylan would leave… But he just got up and
followed her at a distance. "You know, Vic really seemed to know a lot
about our personal lives."
Trance sighed mentally. Talk about a one-track mind. "Yeah, he did." This
subject was making her very uncomfortable, and she fidgeted if she was
standing still at any point instead of moving around to put supplies away.
"Harper really did a good job of programming that information into him.
…One of his little practical jokes, I assume?" Dylan mused.
"Maybe…" Trance had a feeling that that wasn't the case this time, though.
…As strange as the thought was, she just couldn't get the idea out of her
head that Vic just knew things. About people. …About how people feel.
Dylan sent a quizzical look to the purple girl, and then decided that
asking about what was distracting her would have only caused more problems.
He could let it slide. …For now. …But that would change if it started
really interfering with her duties.
"Is that headache better yet?"
"Yeah. Thanks, Trance," Dylan called, then turned and left the medical bay.
Maybe she just needed some time to herself.
…As soon as the Captain was out of the room, Q appeared in a flash of light
on the Med. Bed with his feet propped up. "I take it you enjoyed the
Trance rolled her eyes and engaged Privacy Mode again. "What are you doing
Q, in mock hurt, exclaimed, "Trance Gemini! …I am merely concerned for a
fellow Q's well being. What is so wrong about that?"
Trance groaned in frustration and quickly finished putting the rest of the
tools away in the other room. Maybe there she would get a break from his
constant badgering and nagging. …He was one of the few creatures in the
entire universe that had earned the purple one's contempt.
But Q was only more amused by her pathetic try to escape his presence and
snapped his fingers, teleporting to her new location and standing over her
shoulder as she worked. "You can do better than that!" When she ignored him
completely, he grinned and thought of a little something else to taunt her
with. "You know, they all talk about you endlessly. …Gossip and all that,"
he whispered mockingly in her ear. "Some of them even think you've
forgotten how to use your powers entirely."
Trance frowned and firmly, but gently, pushed him away and walked into the
other room with her work. "Just leave me alone, Q. …I've told you before,
they can think what ever they wish. It makes no difference to me."
Now it was his turn to make a sour face. That was not the response he had
hoped for. …No matter. There were still loads of material to annoy her
"You've got it bad, Trance," he said from a comfortable position on a Med.
Bed as Trance arrived in the room. Q smirked as she jumped – he had caught
her off guard.
"Got what?" she asked skeptically. Trance had no idea what he was talking
about at all.
Q laughed from deep in his throat at Trance's sudden suspicion. He had
taught her well, it seemed. "Did you like the program?" he repeated, as if
that answered her question.
She stared at him with a mixed feeling of fear, uncertainty, and confusion.
…And Q delighted in it. "Maybe you could borrow it from Good ol' Doctor
Trance looked away quickly, thinking back on the conversation she and her
friends had with Vic, the hologram. …What had he intended to say? …And why
did he stop himself? That made no sense. Vic had said something else about
everyone else… well, with the exception of Rev and Tyr…but still… "Q," she
began cautiously, unsure of whether or not she wanted to be asking this.
"When we were talking to Vic… He was going to say something about Harper
and me…but…um…he…ummm… didn't." Oh gosh, it's official. Trance had lost her
mind. "What was he going to say?" she finished, then looked innocently to
Q, hoping for a straight and honest answer. That in it of itself would have
been a miracle, but still…
He just chuckled and grinned at her. "If you are so curious, maybe you
should go back and ask him yourself." The look on his face was simply one
of amusement. …It both frightened and confused the Purple One immensely.
"Why are you so insistent about that?" she asked, cocking her head to the
side. What was he up to?
"Ley's just say… I have cause to be interested in what happens to you."
"That doesn't answer my question," Trance pointed out, crossing her arms in
annoyance, tapping her tail against the ground.
"Just do it, girl!" Q thundered for Trance's benefit. "Have you forgotten
how to trust? …And here I thought you had learned something from these
people. …Maybe the rumors were right," he finished disgustedly and prepared
to snap his fingers and disappear.
"Wait," she said softly. …Trance couldn't believe she was doing this. He
was a pest! Who cares if he was mad at her? …She did. She sighed as she
realized that. "I'm sorry Q. …But don't forget about tricking me into
playing Goddess. …That was cruel, Q." When she began, her voice was meek
and quiet, but as the words poured out, it became hard and hurt as she
remembered those days… What a terrible time in her past…
Q merely sent her another laughing grin and snapped his fingers,
transporting himself to Q Only Knows Where…
Trance frowned thoughtfully at the place he had formerly occupied and shook
her head. …He never ceased to amaze her.
After her duty shift was over for the day, Trance wasn't sure what to do
with herself. …If Harper had been there, she would have gone to sit with
him until he was done working…but…he was…on a mission somewhere far, far
away. Since he wasn't around, nothing seemed right. …In fact, her whole
routine was messed up. They usually talked about the events of the day and
goofed off until one of them had to get back to work again. …But now…
She sighed and sat down on the cool metal floor of the Machine Shop, gazing
up at the tools and things that littered the floor and cluttered the room.
It reminded her of her friend. Her best friend. …Who just happened to be a
really smart, cute– No, Trance. He's your best friend. You did NOT just
Okay, being in there was not helping at all. …So she got up and marched out
of the room. At first, the girl wasn't sure about where or why she was
going…but as she neared the Observation Deck, it began to get clearer.
With a reluctant sigh, she walked inside and looked around before summoning
Andromeda's Hologram. "Andromeda, can you activate program Gemini001Q,
please?" She secretly smiled at the name she and Harper had chosen for
Vic's file in the main computer banks. …To her friend it had seemed like
just a random tag of numbers and a letter that appeared by chance, but
Trance knew better. …There was a reason behind most of her "accidents".
The Hologram nodded and blinked out of the room as the other holograms
flickered into being, already in motion. …It amused Trance how the program
pretended that it had been running continuously. …The singer was up on the
stage singing away like he'd never stopped…The slow dance tune seemed to
take on a heart and soul of its own as the five-piece band played and there
were couples dancing towards the middle of the room, completely oblivious
to the fact that other beings besides their dance partners were present in
the same room. Trance couldn't help but smile at the fun everyone was
having. …It was a welcoming place. …Even if they were all just holograms.
As the number ended and the band took a break, Vic smiled, immediately
noticing Trance, and quickly made his way through the other holograms
making their way back to their tables. "Hey, doll face! You came back!"
Trance nodded and shyly returned his smile. "I like it here. …Its nice."
Vic kept the same warm tone in his voice the entire time. "Angel, I'm in a
bit of bind. …You see, my lead female vocalist called in sick, and I need a
"Aw! That's sad," Trance said innocently.
"How are you on vocals?"
"Oh, Harper and I sang a song once…" Trance told him, her voice full of
excitement and energy. "It was fun."
Vic thrust a holographic microphone into her hands and Trance's eyes
widened in horror. …She was TOUCHING a holographic image! Then she felt his
hand nudge her forward and twisted away in fear. "V…Vic?"
"Don't worry, babe!" Vic assured her, misinterpreting her fear. "If your
warbling voice is half as cute as the way you talk, they'll love you.
You'll do fine!"
"B-but I …Oh my!" Trance whispered as she was coaxed closer to the stage.
…Q – this was HIS fault!
Vic continued to urge her onward and Trance finally gave in and forgot that
none of that should have been possible. …She could, after all, worry about
THAT later. Right then, she was more concerned with what she was supposed
to sing than anything else. "But…umm…Vic? …I don't think I know any songs
they would like to hear."
"It'll come to you, Angel face," he told her, escorting her to the foot of
the stage. He left her there and stood in the center of a bright spot
light. "Ladies and Gentlemen, tonight we have a special treat. If this babe
doesn't entrance you, well, Paley, you have a real problem," he joked,
chuckling a bit. …The audience added to the happy laughing sound as he
lifted him arm, indicating the right end of the stage as his spot light
dimmed and another one revealed a nervous purple girl shyly smiling into
the microphone. "Ladies and Gents, Miss Trance Gemini!"
The jazzy music flowed from the five-pieces that made up the band arranged
behind her and Trance couldn't help but smile. …Ever since the spotlight
had come on, she hadn't felt afraid anymore. …She couldn't see the people
watching her any longer.
Suddenly there she was. On a stage, holding a holographic microphone, and
loving it! She instinctively knew when her cue was approaching and
struggled to smile through the heat of the light.
She opened her mouth and heard herself singing. A shy, unsure voice was
starting the song…
"You'd…you'd better love me while you may…
Tomorrow I may fly away…"
Was that really her? Trance Gemini? It was a little soft and cautious, but
it didn't sound too bad.
"I want your gentle touch…
That elemental touch…
That continental touch…
And you want me too and I know that you do…"
What a …curious song. …She was sure she'd never heard it before. …So, how
were the words materializing in her mind like that?
"You'd better love me while I'm here…
I have been known to disappear, so…
Don't let this miracle melt away!"
Trance noticed the cello player smiling at her…and smiled back…and the
musical phases still came from her throat so naturally. She put a little
more volume behind her voice and expressed the lyrics with so much more
feeling than before. As she looked out into the blinding spotlight, she saw
Vic smiling and giving her a thumbs up sign.
She slowly moved to stand beside the cello player and playfully peeked at
him from around the instrument as he played and she sang. She was surprised
when he looked back at her with eyes full of adoration… and something she
"The clock ticks fast above me!
If you think fondly of me…
You'd better love me… You'd better love me…
You'd better love me while you may!" she concluded back at the center of
The room erupted with applause and whistles. She looked around, and with an
expression of bewilderment and amazed satisfaction, she curtsied and
giggled in acknowledgement of their appreciation.
"Thank you. Thank you very much," Trance said, clumsily putting the mike
back in the stand as Vic came up to escort her from the stage.
"See, Angel? That wasn't too difficult, now, was it?" he asked.
She looked at him and smiled. "Wow. …That was fun!"
"Good… 'Cause you're on again in fifteen minutes."
"I get to do that AGAIN?" Trance asked excitedly, giggling with
anticipation. …She only wished that her friends… her best friend in
particular …could be there to share in her fun.
Those thoughts demanded that she ask the question she longed to know the
answer to after they had seated themselves at a table on the darkened side
of the room. "Vic," she said in a hushed voice, "Last night…um…when my
friends and I were leaving…and…ummm…you were commenting about our lives…
you started to say something to me, but stopped. Why?"
He gazed into her eyes. "Well, sweetie, I didn't think you wanted him to
"Him who?" she asked cautiously. "Know what?"
"Harper. I didn't think you wanted him to know that you are crazy in love
Trance took a sharp breath and stared at him, blinking rapidly, and trying
to make sense of what she'd just heard. "Umm… What… what makes you think
"Angel, it's written all over you. You think you can hide it under that
cute purple skin of yours and even deny it to yourself, but… you love him."
Vic looked into her still-stricken eyes. "And he loves you. Has for a long
time. …But you are afraid. …And he is too. What's with it? You two are cute
kids – you're sweet and charming, he's a good looking guy, you two should
have done something about it a long time ago."
Trance was still baffled and upset by his knowledge. "But…we're friends.
Best friends and—"
"Stash that kind of talk, honey… There comes a time when you've just gotta
let go and face the facts. You know what I mean? …You gotta be true to
yourself." He looked up. …The band had stopped playing and was going on its
break. "Okay, when the band comes back, you're back. Think you can handle
Trance was still very confused and shaken by what had been said, but nodded
her head in affirmation.
This was a whole new world…
The following night and the night after that, Trance made her way to Vic's…
no longer worried about being able to touch the holograms. She had just
accepted it as one of the universe's little mysteries and dropped the
Vic asked her to sing again, and she amazed herself with yet another
audience-pleasing tune. She even sat down with Antony, the cello player,
and played a few notes herself. Mmmm… the secret life of an already very
secretive sparkly purple girl!
"For you, beautiful," Vic said as he clipped a glittering butterfly into
"Vic, why are you being so nice to me?" Trance asked innocently, after
"Angel face, I can spot a lonely soul a mile off. You need a good friend,
and I want to be that friend. Also…we got to get you to learn how to trust
yourself…be more confident. Who knows what might happen?" He took her arm
and steered her over to a table that had escaped the glare of the
Her eyes became acclimated to the darkness of the room, and she suddenly
recognized a thin, blonde patron seated at a table, elegant in a black
The stranger rose as they approached. It was Harper! Vic proceeded with an
introduction, "Doll, I'd like you to meet Mark Ryder. Mark, this is
The holographic image of her best friend took her hand and proceeded to
kiss it. "It is a pleasure to meet you, Miss Trance. Quite a lovely voice
you have… It sounds like you put your entire soul into your singing." He
pulled out a chair for her. "Please have a seat. Would you like a drink?"
he asked her.
Vic nodded to her, and disappeared.
"I…I guess so. Lemonade, please?" Trance didn't know why, but when he
kissed her hand, she wanted to slap his face and run away…and…and hide
behind the real Harper. She shook her head mentally at herself. Trance
Gemini, you are quite possibly insane, she thought.
"…Lemonade…I gotcha, Trance," he said, nodding to the silent waiter, who
was standing in the background. "So…want to catch a bite after your last
Trance felt the blood rush to her face. "Ummm…"
"If you feel uncomfortable about it –just the two of us-- maybe we could
ask Vic, too," he offered smoothly.
"Um…yes, that would be fine. Let's get Vic to join us," she agreed
reluctantly. Something inside her had decided the moment he'd spoken that
she didn't like him. …And that part of her refused to stay quiet and get
Mark took both of his hands and cupped her small right hand in-between his.
"Such a delicate hand. Just like the rest of you. Your quite a pretty
little package, little lady."
Trance extracted her hand and stood up. Enough was enough. This guy was a
creep! "Vic?" she called in an uncertain little voice, peering through the
darkness and bright spotlight, looking for her kind friend.
Mark stood up as well, putting an arm around her shoulder and turning her
back toward the table, walking her back toward her seat. "Look, Trance, I
don't like it when people get up and walk off like that. In fact, I think
it's incredibly rude," he whispered nastily in her ear.
The Purple One twisted out of his grasp and backed away, glaring at him.
"And I don't like people who look like my friend to treat me like that,"
she told him seriously, still scanning the darkness for Vic. She wasn't
quite ready to hit Mark, but the thought had crossed her mind.
Mark shook his head at Trance and advanced toward her. "Lady Trance, I am
going to say this once…and if you aren't back in that chair after that, I
promise you won't be happy." She was unfazed and countered his steps toward
her with backward hops.
"Umm…That's really not a very nice way to talk to anyone, you know," Trance
Mark smiled, but it never reached his eyes. "It's always worked for me
Trance stopped walking away and crossed her arms, glaring at him. "Well,
um… its not going to work now. I think it makes you look like a complete
idiot. …And I dare you to try and make me go back to that table! I dare
you! …What's the matter? Afraid of little purple me?"
He walked forward with the intent of grabbing her arm and forcing her back
to the table, but Trance just smiled as sweetly as she could and waited for
him to get closer.
A waiter walked by at just the right moment, and Trance stretched out her
tail, tripping them. His weight shifted to the right to compensate for his
stumble, ramming straight into Mark and his black tux. Food and wine
splattered all over it and Trance paused a moment to giggle at the mess he
was now wearing, before disappearing into the darkness of the club around
She laughed mischievously as she realized what she'd done. …Poor waiter,
though… But Mark had deserved that and more. What a terrible way to treat
Vic stepped up to Trance and noticed Mark wasn't around. "Where's Mark,
"Umm… He decided he didn't like me after all," Trance said simply, grinning
secretly to herself.
Vic shrugged. "Hey, I'm sure its no big deal. Want me to clear it up?"
"No!" Trance said quickly. "No, that's okay. …You…um… don't need to do
that," she said in a calmer voice.
"Was there some problem?"
And then it hit her. That guy had been a lot like Harper in many ways… and
he'd scared her half to death. He was such a creepy person! …And…and Vic
was the one who'd introduced her to him. Had he known how awful Mark was
going to be? And then her thoughts crept back to Mark again. …How… scary he
had been. And…the scariest part was that he looked exactly like Harper. If
she hadn't known better, she might have been able to believe that he was
But wait! …That didn't mean that the real Harper would do something like
that. …Just because Mark did. He was ONLY a hologram, after all. …A very
scary one, but a hologram nonetheless.
She was so confused that her eyes started to tear up and she looked toward
the door longingly, wishing for some escape. …But… she just couldn't…walk
out of there. Her legs were stiff with fear. …And so running was out of the
question too. …Hmmm… that only left—Oh no! No, no, no!
…But… There was no other way out…
In the next seconds, a bright flash enveloped her purple form and she
closed her eyes tightly, sending a glittering tear down her cheek. After an
un-measurably short amount of time, the girl opened her eyes and was
greeted by the comforting walls of her own room. The music playing in her
ears had been replaced by the gentle laughter of water moving over pebbles
in her fountain.
She collapsed in a perplexed heap on her bed and cried until her eyes
burnt. "Never again …I'm not ever going back in there…" she whispered into
her sopping pillow. "Never, never, never…"
The next afternoon should have brought a happy spark back to Trance's pale
face… It SHOULD have. …But all she could think about when she heard that
Harper and Beka had returned in the Maru was the way that Mark had acted
toward her. She was supposed to meet them in the docking bay to help unload
–just like she always did—But she just couldn't. It hurt too much.
Trance quickly went to the Hydroponics Bay and busied herself with her
plants. No one would miss her, she told herself with a sad shrug. Missing
one little thing like this couldn't hurt. …Nope. It couldn't. …Could it?
Without warning, the Andromeda's Hologram blipped into the room and
interrupted her thoughts. "Trance? …They are about to arrive. Don't you
want to go meet them?"
"NO!" she said with hurt and anger, looking ashamedly down at the floor.
"Very well," Andromeda muttered, amazed by her reaction, and left her
Yes, she was very much alone, now. …At least, that was how she felt. She
just couldn't think of her best friend anymore without remembering Mark.
As the silence continued to eat away at her heart, Trance's thoughts were
once again brought back to Q and the puzzle he was. …And what about those
holograms? Why could they touch her? …So many strange things had started
happening after Q had appeared only days before. …So many things…
She sighed and went back to digging through the dirt aimlessly. She had
nothing better to do.
"Hey, Trance, wait till you see…" Harper's excited voice trailed away to
silence as he looked around the docking bay for his purple friend.
"Trance?" he called.
Hmm… that was weird. Trance was always there to greet him when they came
back from things like this. …It was… sad to not see her there now.
But, of course, he'd never admit that to anyone else.
As Beka walked out of the Maru, following her engineer, she took a quick
look around and nodded with satisfaction. It was good to be back home—on
After unloading all of the supplies and receiving the all clear from Beka,
Harper decided to go get a snack. He was pretty hungry after that long
trip. …And then maybe he'd go looking for Trance.
…No… Maybe not. She would have contacted him by now if she'd wanted to say
hi or something. …No, it was probably best to let her be.
Walking through the halls, he jumped a good ten feet when he heard,
He whirled around and came face to face with a suave, tuxedoed nightclub
host from Trance's program. "Hey, buddy… Harper!"
"Just exactly what do you think you're doing out here? How'd you GET out
here in the first place? I thought your program was confined to the Obs.
Vic just smiled and answered conspiratorially, "I'm full of surprises,
Paley. Actually, your friend left my program running last night. In the
Observation Lounge, the band was taking a quick break, so I slipped over
here. Hey, buddy, I gotta talk with you."
"Alright, 'Paley,' what do you want?" Harper asked warily. He didn't like
computer programs to surprise him like that.
"Say… I know that you're nuts about the Purple Pixie… and guess what? Pal,
she digs you, too. What do you say that I fix up the two of you?"
"What are you talking about?"
"Let's say a nice quiet little dinner at my place… just the two of you…
champagne; dinner; a little dancing; who knows what next?"
Harper shook his head, laughing at the ludicracy of the offer. "And just
what makes you think you can pull off something like this?" A hologram was
trying to… Hahahaha! That was just TOO funny.
"Trust me, paley; just trust me. How about eight o'clock tomorrow night?
Fine; then it's settled!"
Harper was shocked into silence.
"Oh, and by the way, pal – get a tux. Now promise me…"
Mutely, Harper nodded and wondered what he was getting himself into.
And the hologram disappeared.
Trance was in her quarters, trying to sleep. She found that task
impossible, however and soon gave up. "Sleep will catch up to me
eventually, after all," she mumbled to herself as she closed her eyes. "Its
As she lay there on her bed, Gemini rethought how she'd handled her fear of
Harper. …Now, she found herself feeling bad about it. About not even
offering an explanation or anything. "That… wasn't very nice," Trance said
out loud, her voice soaked in regret. …But… she wasn't feeling up to fixing
the situation at the moment, either. …Too tired…
But what about when she did explain? …What about… how she was going to
explain? How COULD she explain that it wasn't even him she was mad at, but
a creepy hologram that happened to look like him?
Her concentration was broken by a voice coming over the comm. system in her
quarters. "Trance… Trance…"
She looked up, a quizzical expression on her face. "Vic? …Is…is that you?"
"Yeah, its me. Say, we've got to talk."
"How can you be talking to me?" she continued in wonder.
The voice sighed. Would no one believe it was him? "Trust me… It's a little
trick I've learned," Vic stated.
Finally, Trance felt like there was someone worthy of being complained to.
HE was the one who introduced her to Mark in the first place – it was only
fair that he hear this… Right?
"Vic, I can't believe what happened last night! …It was totally uncalled
for and awful! How could you have allowed a program to get so out of
control? …I…I've never had anyone I cared about …um… do anything scary like
that before…" She had started out mad and fiery, but by the end, her voice
was wavering dramatically and Trance was nearly in tears.
"Yeah, I know; that was a bad scene, doll, and that's why I'm here, I want
to make it up to you."
"M…make it up to me? I…I don't know if…if that's…If I want to ever see you
again. …Or anyone else."
"Come on, Angel. You know that isn't true. You're hurt and upset… but this
will make it all better. I promise."
"…What are you talking about?" she asked, now suspicious. "And it had
better not have anything to do with singing," Trance added, pushing her
head deeper into her pillow.
"No, no; nothing more about singing. What I have is an entirely overhauled
program. In fact, I based it entirely on Mr. Harper. I think you'll like
"Why?" Trance asked simply, frowning uncertainly.
Vic sighed over the comm. "Like I told you before, I know that you really
dig the guy. And, yeah…yeah...your own denial and fears keep you from
saying anything. Hey, this way, I can let you two be together without
breaking any rules, you know what I mean?"
"I don't like the idea of spending time with a hologram again," the purple
"Oh, doll face… no one will know. We'll put the privacy lock on and all.
Besides, I know that because of last night, you gave the guy the cold
shoulder on his return today. Maybe if we can make it right with the
hologram dude, you'll feel better about facing your best friend."
Trance sighed, and then reluctantly considered it. He DID have a good point
there… Oh well. What harm could it do? "Okay, but um… Vic? If this doesn't
work, I personally will erase your program – borrowed from Julian or not. I
don't care what Q thinks!"
"I read you loud and clear, Angel. I promise… it'll be better. Twenty-
hundred hours tomorrow night?"
"Umm… All right…"
"Oh, and Trance? …Remember, dresses for the ladies!"
"Kay. Bye Vic."
"Ciao, babe," he called back.
"What am I getting myself into, now?" Trance wondered once his voice had
been silent for several minutes and she was sure he was gone.
Harper and Trance didn't see each other the following day, as he was busy
with repair work. Trance spent quite a lot of time in Hydroponics, keeping
occupied with caring for her plants and thinking. There was still so much
to think about.
"Still wallowing in self pity?" he asked as he flashed into being beside
"Hi, Q," she said quietly and with little emotion at all. "And I was not
wallowing. …I was… thinking about things that…um…upset me a great deal."
Q wasted no time in cutting to the chase this time, "Are you going to
attend Vic's little social event tonight?" There was a distracted and
uninterested tone to his words, but Trance saw right through that. …He was
hiding his curiousness. …But not very well.
"I told him I would, didn't I?" was her casual reply.
"Are you sure you want to do that?" The bored quality in his voice was
filtered out this time, leaving behind a cautious and energetic dangerous
"Ummm… not really …But I promised that I would and umm… maybe his plan will
work," Trance replied sweetly, shrugging her shoulders.
"Consider this carefully, Trance. …There are hidden possibilities here…"
Trance smiled at him. "Its very nice that you are concerned, Q. I'm
"Concern?" he said with distain. "I was merely making sure that you knew
what you were doing. …And I see that you think you do."
"Yes, I do."
"Very well …But don't say I didn't warn you," Q hissed, and then snapped
his fingers and was gone.
It was nearly 1800 hours when she got to Rommie's quarters. She sighed;
Trance really didn't want to get all dressed up to go "meet" Vic's new
improved hologram, but he had insisted, so… And, on second thought, maybe a
change of pace would be good for her anyway.
The door opened automatically when she arrived, so she slowly stepped
inside. "Umm… Hi, Rommie!"
Rommie smiled in her military way and motioned for the purple girl to come
closer. "You told my holographic counterpart that you wanted to borrow one
of the dresses for special occasions?"
"Uh-huh." Trance really felt special being in there. Beka got to dress up
all the time because she was the First Officer and had to impress everyone
and stuff like that… and, even though Beka said she hated it, Trance had
wondered what it would be like. …Well, it looked like she was going to find
After searching through dozens of dresses, Rommie and Trance found several
that she liked and the girl disappeared behind the screen to try them on.
…But eventually, she decided on a deep purple knee-length dress with a
flowing skirt and interwoven cords as straps. It was very Trance-like and
complimented her skin color beautifully. Needless to say, she loved it.
Rommie ushered Trance out of the room with the dress so that she could
repair the damage to the room and clean up everything by a suitable hour.
Trance quickly returned to her room and slipped into the dress. On yes, she
really liked that dress. She smiled and played with her hair a bit until it
was time to go to the Obs. Deck. …Hmm… She wasn't sure if she really wanted
to go or not.
It had nothing to do with Q's warning. In truth, she hadn't given that a
second thought. …She just wasn't sure if she was comfortable playing this
game with the holographic Harper. …And when you thought about it, it was
just all a big game.
But her own curiosity quickly won out and she made her way to the Obs.
Deck, arriving with only minutes to spare.
The club had been cleared of all the tables, save one. It was set a few
feet back from the dance floor, across from which, Dave, the piano player,
and Jake, the bass player, were engrossed in their soothing, quiet music.
The table itself was covered in a flowing white table cloth and centered
with candles and pretty purple, pink, and white flowers. Crystal and silver-
rimmed china were in readiness on the table.
On the other side of the table was the "new" Harper-hologram, in a nice
suit, but still in a somewhat casual style that Harper felt more
comfortable in. His hair was more Harper-like, too, this time. …Not nearly
as messy as usual, but still… He smiled broadly at Trance. "Woah… You
look…" he blinked, and then continued. "You look beautiful!"
"That's sweet, Harper," she managed to say with a smile.
Vic suddenly appeared beside the table. "I'm glad you two could make it
tonight. I'll be waiting on you this evening."
Harper snapped out of his daze and moved around the table to pull a chair
out for her. Trance smiled at the definite change in manners from the
previous hologram. "Thank you," she said.
Vic smiled and waited for the man to take his seat before starting talking
again, "I think we could start off with shrimp cocktails. How about some
champagne to go with that?" Vic filled their glasses before Trance could
protest, and put the shrimp-rimmed bowls of ice in front of them.
The couple was completely engrossed in each other; Trance could not get
over the change in his demeanor.
"Trance, I don't think I've ever seen you so… so… so confident. I'm
She blushed and giggled at him. He wasn't quite acting like normal, she
noticed; it was kinda funny. He was definitely an improvement to that icky
Mark guy, though.
Her gaze moved to the bowl sitting in front of her and she made a face.
"Harper, what is that stuff?"
"It's called shrimp. And old earth delicacy. …Its actually pretty good." He
took a bite. "Try some."
Trance didn't hesitate to taste it. Mmmm… it was good! She giggled at the
new taste and ate a little bit more of her food, smiling at the hologram of
her friend that sat across from her.
Harper gazed into her eyes, seeing a reflection of something… something
new. "I don't think it's the dress…or the atmosphere. It's just that…you
seem more comfortable with yourself for once…"
Trance nodded. "Yeah. …I've shied away from confidence my whole life, but,
in the last few days, I've learned that it's… okay …to um…to be more self
"And this is a side I could really learn to enjoy, Trance babe." He raised
his glass to her and smiled when Trance looked confused.
With a quick glance at him and back to her own glass, Trance copied his
movement and waited curiously to see what the point of this was.
Harper clinked his glass against hers, and then sipped the wine slowly.
Trance grinned at the cute clinking sound, but just put her glass back
where it had been before and watched the piano player for a minute.
"Why the change now?" he continued.
Trance glanced at Vic, who was patiently waiting a discreet distance from
them. "Ummm… Let's just say Vic taught me a few things," she smiled.
Harper's face took on a not so subtle hint of jealously and he got
protective. "What kinds of things?" he asked.
"Ummm…just that… it's okay to be more sure of myself…and that it's okay to
take chances sometimes…"
She smiled shyly at him and found herself reaching across to take his hand.
…And hand that felt so real. "And… he told me some things about myself that
even I didn't realize." Wow. …She just surprised herself with that one!
Harper felt himself responding to the warmth and gentle touch of her hands
and asked, "Would you like to dance?"
"Sure. I'd love to," Trance said, as they rose and glided over to the dance
He pulled her close and the Purple One fought back the urge to be timid and
shrink away. She didn't feel threatened by him, but it scared her even so;
this was something new and different.
She felt so safe there in his arms and she smiled to herself as the soft
music continued to play and they slowly danced in sync with its rhythm.
Trance leaned into his shoulder and was swept up by the entire atmosphere.
This character was light on his feet and his grasp on her waist was gentle
and nice. He wasn't threatening at all, unlike the other hologram.
The music stopped, but they stayed locked in their position, their eyes
searching for something… reaching into each other.
He whispered to her, "Why are we in this hologram program? We could do this
without the holograms."
Trance was still in a trance. "Ummm… That might be a little difficult."
"But why couldn't we have dinner and stuff without him? …Trance-babe, no
offense but your hologram friend is a little strange," Harper said,
becoming frustrated with the perplexing purple girl.
She sighed and seemed to awaken from her trance, having to face reality.
"Don't you understand? We just can't."
"Trance, it would make a lot more sense. …We'd have to avoid the Boss, of
course, but that wouldn't be too hard, and…"
"No, we can't," she repeated.
The mood was rapidly disappearing. "Why not?"
Trance looked at him with growing impatience and finally said, "Because
you're a hologram!"
His eyes widened with shock as well as surprise. "A hologram? Trance-babe,
that's all wrong! I'm…"
"But you are!" Trance shook her head with exasperation. "Gosh! …He even has
YOU thinking that…"
Vic rushed over to the couple, realizing that his game was up. "Hold on,
you two. Let's not ruin what –up until now-- has been a lovely evening."
"Tell him, Vic," Trance insisted, her voice betraying the growing feelings
of anguish and confusion that were overtaking her.
"I'm sorry, Angel," the holographic singer told her, although he was
smiling. "This guy's for real. I'm good, but not that good. There's nothing
better than the genuine article."
Harper's response was not muted shock like Trance's. He took a couple of
steps toward the hologram. "You tricked us!" he growled menacingly.
Vic held his arms out in front of himself, warding off any potential danger
from the irate engineer. "Whoa… wait a minute, paley. This evening wasn't
all that bad, was it? After all… from my point of view, you two were
finally letting your hair down and getting to enjoy each other."
Trance's eyes darted back and forth between the two men. Her face was a
mixed menu of betrayal and embarrassment. After letting out a long
disappointed sigh and blinking tears out of her eyes, she ran out of the
Harper's eyes remained trained on Vic, when Vic meekly said, "I know… I
know… End program."
And suddenly, Harper was all alone in the middle of the Observation Deck.
Trance and Rev were eating breakfast in the Officer's Mess the following
morning, reviewing their own plans for their days and discussing the
mysteries of the cosmos. She was desperately trying to keep her attention
on Rev and their conversation, but it was obvious that her thoughts were
elsewhere. Without warning, Rev changed topics, "Trance, I have noticed
that you are…a bit distracted. Is there anything you would like to talk
"Wha… what? Oh. …I'm sorry, Rev," she said, embarrassed that he had caught
her lack of interest in the subject. "I guess I'm just… I just need to wake
up a bit more or…something." She paused, shaking her head and frowning
sadly. "No… No, that isn't it either."
She looked deeply into the concerned eyes of her friend and glanced away
before proceeding. "Rev, have you ever had a moment… a …sweet little
stellar moment… when, ummm, the truth was so crystal clear…that…you focused
on it with no doubts at all?"
"Perhaps once or twice," the Magog Wayist said solemnly. "Those times are
"What did you do?"
Rev's eyes wavered from hers a moment before he continued. "I acted on it.
I prefer to view such times as gifts from the Divine …and they should not
be wasted. …Have you had such a moment, Trance?"
Her face softened into a warm purple smile. "Maybe," she replied
cryptically. What are you doing, Trance? You wanted his advice, so you
should be honest with him …just like he was with you. "Yes… last night I
did. And then I thought better of acting upon it. Now… I'm having second
Their discussion was diverted by the "whoosh" of the Mess Deck doors
sliding open, and Harper's form entered the large room with Beka and Dylan.
He scanned the room and promptly ignored Trance's presence, as the three of
them sat down at another table, joining Rommie and Tyr.
Rev's eyes quickly took in the scene. The friction between the purple girl
and the engineer was made obvious by their individual attempts to ignore
the other. He was about to comment, when Trance glanced back at Harper
He seemed to sense the action and, although Beka and Dylan were in the
middle of a discussion with the younger man, he felt polarized, drawn by
her gaze; he just couldn't pay attention to them with her staring at him
that way, a sad, scared look upon her purple face.
Before Rev could speak, Trance said hastily to him, "I think I'm having
another one of those moments."
He stated softly, "Then perhaps…"
But Trance was already up out of her chair and on her way to Harper's
table. Beka and Dylan exchanged curious questioning glances as the little
purple girl drew nearer. …But the First Officer's curiousness soon took on
another quality when she saw the timid fear in Trance's eyes; now she
wasn't only interested in what was going on, but she wondered if she was
going to have to hurt Harper for something.
"Harper… about last night…ummm… I really think we need to talk."
The man was still smarting from his most recent rebuff from the sparkly
purple one. After all, she left him on the Obs. Deck. "Why? So you can
accuse me of being a hologram again?"
Dylan looked uncomfortable and looked away, trying to ignore the
conversation. "So, Beka, how is the Maru doing after that cargo run?"
"Fine, fine," she replied hurriedly, very interested in what Trance was
going to say in response to Harper. Under the table, her hands clenched
into fists – it defiantly looked like she was gonna have to do serious
damage to Harper this time.
"No… you know what I mean," Trance said quietly, looking down at the floor
at her tail. It had wrapped itself around her ankle. "Let's meet in the
Hydroponics Bay in an hour."
"All business again, is it, Trance? Why can't it be a nice cozy little
dinner here? Or in my quarters?"
Beka tensed. She didn't think she liked where this conversation was going…
or what it implied.
"Oh, of course. And what then?" Trance demanded, now annoyed. "Next thing I
know you'll be plying me with champagne or asking me to dance… and then
you'd probably want to kiss me!"
They were now facing each other, but only inches apart. Their voices had
started in low, shy tones, but they had grown up in volume and intensity as
emotion and passion had overtaken their words… words that were now spilling
out, unsuppressed in their fever.
He glowered at her, "Why bother with dinner and dancing? Why don't I kiss
you right now?"
She was just as adamant in her response. "Yeah; why not?"
And he did. Harper grabbed her shoulders and vigorously pulled her towards
him, his face covering hers, his lips devouring hers.
A sudden silence swept over the lively and vocal early morning atmosphere
of the Officer's Mess as the two Andromeda crewmembers created their own
time and place. …Even Tyr and Rommie ceased their discussion about new
defense upgrades to stare in quiet amazement at the two.
Rev joined them at their table swiftly, not taking attention away from
Trance and Harper, and smiled approvingly at them, nodding to Dylan. The
Captain couldn't help but break into a wide grin of happy approval. Tyr was
so stunned that his eating utensil slipped out of his paralyzed fingers and
dropped onto the floor.
Beka's mouth had dropped open long ago as the two practically had been
yelling at each other and her first thought had been to stop Harper and
beat him up, but she'd pulled in the reigns when Rev came over and didn't
seem bothered by this at all. …And it really helped when Dylan and Rommie
started grinning. Before long, she found herself sharing their grin as
A need to breathe broke their long awaited embrace. They pulled apart and
only long enough to assure each other that this was truly happening …that
they were no longer pushing each other away. Eager to affirm this new
reality, they resumed their kiss, and then smiled with bubbling happiness
at each other.
Harper looked down into her eyes and saw the loving happy warmth he'd
always hoped was there reflected up at him. He'd never really known what
true love felt like, but he guessed that this was it; it was an
overwhelmingly giddy bubbly warm feeling. One that only intensified when he
looked at Trance's smiling eyes. He tenderly kissed her forehead, and then
held her close, wrapping his arms around her, protecting her from the
Trance closed her eyes when he kissed her and welcomed the hug, no longer
afraid, much to the approval of their enthralled, appreciative audience.
Outside the window, when no one was watching, Q flashed into being and
peered inside. …Soon, a reluctant smile worked its way onto his face and a
moment later, the bright light burst once again and he was gone.
The doors of the Observation Deck opened to the low lights of Vic's club.
The ever-present combo was finishing up a number as Vic looked up to see
his most recent guest. "Trance, doll! Good to see you! How are things
The sweet purple pixie smiled shyly, but it seemed to light up her face
with a new glow. "Vic, we couldn't be happier. And we owe it to you." And
Q, but that was another story entirely.
He took her hands and gently kissed each one. "Nonsense, Angel; you two had
it in you all along. I just sort of nudged everything to the surface. Then,
it was up to you and the young man to take over."
"Well… I could have never done it without you. You introduced me to a side
of myself I had always been afraid of... a stronger side. " Trance leaned
towards him and sweetly kissed his cheek. "Thanks, Vic …for everything."
He grinned at her. "Just keep that happy face, Angel…"
"Will do," she said as she slowly walked towards the door.
Vic called after her, "Oh, and say… would you keep the program running for
a few minutes after you leave? I feel like singing for a while…"
Trance silently nodded her understanding, as Vic mounted the stage,
microphone in hand. He smiled his secret joy her lavender way, and then
addressed his waiting audience. "And now, folks, for a couple of really
cool cats… this one is for you, Trance and Harper…"
The mellow music and words echoed through her ears and her heart as she
"Just in time…
I found you…just in time…
Before you came, my time…was running low…
I was lost…
The loosing dice were tossed…
My bridges all were crossed…No where to go…!
Now you're here…
And now I know just where I'm going…
No more doubt or fear… I've found my way…
I've found my way."
Vic smiled and continued the song even after she had left… But then the end
"For love came just in time…
You found me just in time…
To change my lonely life that lovely… lonely life that lovely… lonely life
that lovely day!"
And the music came to a lovely end and the holographic audience showered
him with applause. When Vic had enough, he waved his hand over them and the
clapping people were gone. Little by little, the entire program shut itself
off until only Vic and the stage remained. The spotlight still lit up a
circle around Vic and he gazed at the room with the warm feeling that he
He didn't even notice when the quick flash appeared beside him and
continued to stare out at the room when a familiar voice spoke, "You did a
good job. I must say, I'm surprised."
"Buddy, anything for a hurting soul. But let me ask you one thing," Vic
said, finally acknowledging Q's presence and turning to face the man.
"Why'd you do it? …You don't exactly seem to be Cupid's little helper."
"She is one of us," Q replied in a tone laced with a mixture of annoyance
and boredom. "The Continuum sees her as… a link of sorts between the Q and
mortals. She was never happy with us …but now perhaps she has found
something here. As for my involvement, that is my own business."
Vic just nodded and smiled at Q's honesty.
"Ready to go?" Q asked suddenly.
"All set. Nothing against Trance or her friends, but I miss the station."
"Bingo. I had quite a time trying to do my work without physical
properties. Thanks for fixing that for me, by the way, pal. It made
everything so much easier," Vic thanked him.
Q just grinned and snapped his fingers, sending the holo-program back where
he belonged and returning the Andromeda's projectors to their normal
configuration. "There. Much better."
Trance hummed to herself as she clipped and pruned her garden on the
Hydroponics Bay only minutes later. She did a cute happy little dance
instead of walking and swirled around in a loose circle, her arms and tail
flowing with the motion. It made her giggle.
The sudden voice and presence in the room embarrassed the little purple one
and she blushed a deep purple. "Hi, Q."
"I see that you didn't heed my warning," Q continued with a note of
"Do I ever?" she replied cheerfully.
"No, I suppose not," he said in a slightly darker heavy tone. Q shifted
into a new position that was a bit more comfortable. "Are you sure this is
what you want?"
Trance turned around to look at him. "Yes, I am …I love him, Q. More than
"And what of your mission?"
She considered that, and then answered confidently, "Umm… there are
certainly …more factors to think about now …but… this won't change
anything. Why would it? I'll still guide them with a careful hand, nudging
them in the right direction. That's all I can do."
Q scoffed at her. Her powers provided her with so many more options than
that. Why couldn't she see that? That is what this entire exercise had been
about for Q: helping her to see that. He shook his head at her, now
serious. He envied her unique position. The Continuum was ALLOWING her to
guide these people. To help them. To play a REAL part in how the universe
was unfolding. It was unfair. If Q had ever even thought about doing such
a thing to the extent of what Trance had already done, was doing, and would
do, he would have been banished or punished in some unthinkable and boring
"Till we meet again, little Trance," Q mumbled, clearly disappointed in
her, and winked away in a burst of white light.
Trance sighed and watched him disappear. A smile spread across her face as
she realized how big a part he played in her new found love. That was …odd.
It surprised her that he would have gone to such lengths to help.
Oh my… She realized, with a shudder, how much tampering he must have had to
have done to make it all fit into place.
Well, she couldn't have that. It needed to be normal around here. …And… oh
gosh, Rommie and Andromeda probably knew about Q, now, too. She was
surprised that Andromeda hadn't said anything…
Trance decided not to give her a chance to, and with a single thought,
erased the Andromeda's records of Q from its databanks. Usually, she
wouldn't have gone to such great lengths to cover the tracks of something
like that, but where Q was involved, she felt it was necessary.
"Trance-Babe? Ready to eat?"
Wow. She was so caught up in her thoughts that she hadn't heard the door
open behind her. "Yeah! Let's go."
And the two exited the room, his arm around her waist, and walked to the
first of many dinners yet to come.