"Failure is not an option."
"No duh, Harry; if we fail, we're dead," Tom quipped, though his tone was serious.
"Hand me the rest of the red wire," Harry returned dryly, picking up the laser torch to fuse it and its other half back together.
Doing as asked, Tom and Harry worked at a frantic, though careful, pace to get their backup power back online before the emergency power ran out. They only had another five minutes before the oxygen start to run out, and then it would be only moments until they were trying to breathe in a vacuum.
Carefully snapping the last wire back into place, Harry said, "Well…if this doesn't work, I'm going to be real pissed."
"Me too," Tom agreed. Hand poised over the circuit breaker, he added, "Here goes nothing."
The switch was flipped…and for one long, earth-shaking moment, nothing happened.
And then the emergency lighting lit up, and the computer's monotone, androgynous voice reported, "Emergency Power Restored."
"That was close," Tom breathed.
"You said it," Harry agreed.
Minutes later Tom was had them on course back to Voyager, piloting them with ease out of the nebula. The Kazon cruiser had left them for dead, but thankfully they'd managed to repair the systems. They had only Warp 3 though, and would be a while getting back to the ship, since Voyager could not be reached by their broken comm systems.
Initiating the autopilot, which had miraculously survived unscathed, Tom swiveled around in his chair to face Harry. "I'm sorry," he said a touch ruefully.
Harry smiled. "Don't worry about it, Tom; we're all right."
"No, I mean I'm sorry about our date. It's our one year anniversary, I wanted it to be special," Tom said softly. A grin lit his face and he added, "Or at least not a life or death battle."
Snorting, Harry said, "There wasn't a battle, it was pretty much just a hit and run on the Kazon's part."
"Yeah, I know. But Harry, do me a favor, okay?" Tom asked.
"Sure, Tom. What?"
Tom flashed a quick grin. "Remind me to never plan a shuttle picnic inside a nebula until we've left Kazon space, all right?"
"Don't worry, Tom; I figured as your best friend it was my job to keep you from making an ass of yourself; as your lover it's practically a full-time gig," Harry said dryly.
Tom rolled his eyes. "Very funny, Harry. You're a real wit."
"Half of one, anyway," Harry agreed pleasantly, before Tom could add the words himself.
Tom scowled at hearing his punch line preempted. "Yeah, well…" he grumbled, not having any more quips.
"You can make it up to me, if you want," Harry offered, sensing his newly-learned joking prowess was a sore spot for his lover.
Tom perked up. "Oh?"
Harry's grin was slightly evil and definitely lustful. "Let me have my wicked way with you this evening."
Tom's own smile was equally as salacious. "Oh, if I have to…" he said in mock put-uponess. Maybe their date had turned out to be a failure…but it was a spectacular failure.