Four years (and one week) later, here's chapter two!
This was written at the same time as chapter one, but I never got round to typing it up!
Many thanks to angel, CelineJaneway, anne, sabella, starstrucked, DianeB, mishy-mo, Anne Rose, jamari, Cool Cat 96, aligater, Captain483, LtLisa, Hamstadini and Celtic Knot for the reviews, and apologies for leaving you hanging for four years!!
Kathryn felt the familiar disembodied tingling of the transporter, and for a brief second, she was in two transporter rooms.
The tingling stopped, and she found herself inside the Central San Francisco transport terminal. Spotting Admiral Paris, Kathryn motioned forwards.
"Hello Kathryn. It's good to see you in person for a change!"
"How are you?"
"Never better!" She smiled.
"Well, let's go and find your crew, but first – coffee."
As they walked down a corridor, Kathryn's mind filled with questions.
Would the crew be glad to see each other?
What had they been up to?
What stories would they have to tell? Well that one was pretty dumb. Of course they'd have stories to tell.
In particular, she was wanting to see Tom and B'Elanna. She'd regularly talked to Tom over the Comm, and had met up with B'Elanna every so often at the Night Owl for a coffee and a gossip. Owen had arrange for them all to have coffee before heading to Starfleet Command so that they could talk without the formalities required at Headquarters. Kathryn had been surprised to see Owen at the Transport terminal, expecting to see him at Market Street.
"So what have you been doing with yourself since we last spoke sir?"
"Conferences, babysitting, diplomatic meetings,babysitting, helping the Pathfinder Project, and babysitting!" Owen chuckled.
"I though as much! How is Neelix? Have you spoken to him through Pathfinder?"
"Only briefly...the contact window is still twelve minutes every twenty-four hours...We're not having much luck expanding window I'm afraid."
"Well sir, if Reg or any of the team require any extra help, I have plenty of spare time!"
"I take the desk job's not too taxing?"
Kathryn giggled a little. "The excitement of being a desk jockey is just too much for me sir!"
"Nechayev getting to eh, Admiral?" Owen was always to-the-point.
Kathryn's demeanour changed, tiredness written on her features.
"Permission to speak freely, sir."
Owen inclined his head.
"Nechayev is driving me insane. If I don't get moved to another department soon, I may do something I'll regret."
Owen looked at her, a knowing smirk on his face, "If it makes you feel any better, no-one likes her much...I'll see if I can get you a position at Pathfinder."
"How about a ship sir?" She asked, hope in her voice.
"I'm sorry, but even I can't persuade Starfleet to give you a ship...HQ wants admirals earthbound or no further than Starbase Four...I'm afraid us Admirals are tied to Sector 001."
Kathryn smiled and shrugged in defeat. "It was worth a shot, sir!"
The smile didn't reach her eyes.