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-During Basics, Pt. I, and Basics, Pt. II. Everyone is already on the planet.
- /.\ - /.\ -
"Do you really think we're going to get rescued?" Neelix asked.
"You're the morale officer, you tell me," Janeway replied in her typical authoritative, almost condescending manner.
Neelix turned a little as they were walking. "Help is on the way!" he called to the crew behind him.
Where were they walking to? No where in particular. Captain Janeway had picked a direction, a random direction, and started walking. Captain's prerogative, well . . . she wasn't the Captain of anything specific anymore, but they followed her just the same.
Who else would they follow?
Chakotay? – too cliché: the Indian shows them how to survive. Ha! She doubted he could even get a fire started.
Tuvok? – that was just as likely as following Chakotay. She could hear it now, 'the Logical Vulcan saved all the illogical humans from certain death on a planet not to different from his own.' Oh, please.
Harry? – HA! Ensign Eager over there? That was an accident just waiting to happen.
She wasn't about to volunteer herself and Tom, if he were her, would just make some witty remarks as usual.
What she would give to hear one of those remarks now. They had always been obnoxious, but that was the cost of his presence.
She didn't know when it had happened, or how for that matter, but it did. One day, she realized that there was no one she would rather be with. She realized that she loved him. He made her feel accepted, like part of something. She had always felt like an outsider, but he changed that.
"Maybe Tom made it through!" Harry suggested.
She hoped so, not just because he could bring them help from the Talaxians, because she needed him to be alive.
If anyone could have made it through the cross fire, it was Tom.
She had this horrible feeling that he was dead, but she couldn't believe that. She instead though about what she'd say when she saw him again.
She could throw her arms around him, and kiss him like she knew he'd kiss her back.
But no . . . that wasn't her, that wasn't them.
Hell! There wasn't even a 'them.'
No, she'd have to say something like: "Took you long enough." Yes, that was more expected.
None of that really mattered now. He was most likely dead, and they would most likely never leave this planet.
- /.\ /.\ -
It was night now, Chakotay had finally gotten some fires started, and that was an ordeal to say the least.
She had lied down for the night and was tying to catch some sleep. It was clod and the ground was hard. She felt very much alone.
Her thoughts drifted back to Tom, as they had been doing all day. If he were here, he'd be lying only a few feet from her. He'd have said something completely out of place like: "Sweet dreams," or "Don't let the bed bugs bite."
Then she and Harry would have groaned and Tom would have chuckled.
She would have loved to hear that chuckle now. She would have loved to feel his arms around her; his mere presence beside her.
But once again, that wasn't likely to happen. She and Tom weren't in a situation to . . . behave like that. He could never put his arms around her, nor would he.
Tom wasn't really interested in her.
She was just going to have to accept that.
- /.\ - /.\ -