Title: Tom's Secret
Author: Jesse
Rated: PG
Summary: Tom has a secret he wishes to share.
This is my first attempt at writing fanfiction, and my first attempt at writing, period, in almost 3 years.

I don't think I can handle it. I can't do it. Look at her....she's just begging to be told. She needs to be told. It's only fair. Fair. Fair to her, and fair to me. I can't be the only one who knows. And she deserves to know. Hell, she'll thank me. And so will he. Because everything will work out perfectly........

*sigh*

....in my head. It's all in my head. And he'll have my head if I tell her. Everything could go wrong. Everything will go wrong. Everything always goes wrong.

But look at her. She should be told. She should be told by him. But he won't do it.

She's very pretty. I can see why he likes her so much. Always talking about her. She's a good person. She'd understand. And who knows how she feels? Just sitting there, oblivious. Oblivious.......

"Tom!"

What the......"Huh?"

"I've said your name 3 times already. What are you so engrossed in?"

Opportunity! Opportunity! Ding Ding Ding! Tell her! She won't spill your secret. You can trust your girlfriend! Go for it!

"Uh....nothing. Nothing. Just.....spacing out. Sit with me?"

"Yeah, thanks. So, tell me, what were you looking at?"

"Looking at?" She saw me looking. You can't hide it anymore!

"Um, I was looking at Seven."

"Seven?"

"Yeah...yeah, I was watching her."

"You were watching Seven?"

Idiot. Don't mention Seven in front of B'Elanna. Maybe this wasn't such a good idea.

"Well, she was just sitting there, all alone."

It's the glare. Time to leave.

"I'm finished here. What say I walk you to Engineering?"

"Alright."

**********

I am such a moron! I can't tell B'Elanna. Oh God, if she found out I was keeping a secret from her, she'd maul me. But I can't tell her. She's not the right one. But I can't stand it. I can't keep it to myself. He's always talking about her. And always to me. Just to me. No one else. Well, I need someone to tell.

"Thanks, Tom. See you later."

Here already. Boy, I bet she's mad at me...

"Love you, B'Elanna!"

That probably just made it worse, you stupid, stupid man.

I can't stand it. I need to get it off my chest!

'Tuvok to Ensign Paris.'

Tuvey, Tuvey Tuvok.

"Paris here."

'Please report to Astrometrics.'

"Yes sir, on my way."

********

Yep. On my way. Tuvok. Holy Krypton, I could tell Tuvok! Tuvok would never say anything. Tuvok wouldn't even care! And I'd finally be able to tell someone!

There he is! There he is!

"You wanted to see me, Tuvok?"

"Yes, Ensign. I require your assistance with the recalibrations to the navigational array. Please watch the harmonic variations while I attempt to adjust them."

"Okay........Um, Tuvok, I have to tell you something."

Go for it!

"What is it, Ensign?"

"I have a secret."

Boy, do I ever!

"And....?"

"And, I have to tell someone!"

"You intend to tell me?"

Yes!

"Well, yeah."

"Are the variations stable?"

"Huh?"

"The harmonic variations, Ensign. Are! They! Stable!?"

"Oh. Uh, yeah. Stable. Anyways..."

"Ensign, perhaps I do not have a complete understanding of the human custom to keep things from one another, but does a "having a secret" not entail that one would keep this "secret" to oneself?"

No, no, Tuvok! I have to tell!

"Well, yeah. But I can't keep it to myself any longer, Tuvok! I need someone to talk to about it! It's really juicy gossip...."

"I am not interested in gossip."

"But I need to tell someone who I know won't betray a confidence!"

"Like you are doing now?"

Way to go, Tom, way to go. Talking with a Vulcan. You KNOW that won't get you anywhere. And now you have guilt. Guilt. Guilt and an exasperating need to spill the beans about love to anyone who will listen...

Well, obviously it's no use talking to Tuvok.

"You're right, Tuvok. My mistake. Thanks for showing me the error of my ways."

The eyebrow rises.....

"You are welcome, Ensign. I believe we are finished here now. You are dismissed."

********

I can't believe this. No one is listening to me! Waitaminute. Harry. Harry would listen.

'Computer, what is the location of Harry Kim?'

'Ensign Harry Kim is in Lieutenant Mitchell's quarters.'

"Awww, Damn."

Lieutenant Laura Mitchell. Well, there goes Harry's chance to hear my news. Gawd, who else is there? Not the Captain. She wouldn't be too happy to find out that I'm giving away secrets....Hmmmm...Neelix? No. No, Neelix would broadcast it over the whole ship. All I need is one person, just one person to talk to. Someone who can keep it quiet...someone to help ME keep it quiet....

'Computer, what is the location of Commander Chakotay?'

'Commander Chakotay is in the Mess Hall.'

I'm gonna friggin' burst at the seams here! This secret is driving me nuts! Chakotay can be told. He'd never tell. I'll just mention it to him, and he'll keep the secret with me. Then someone else will know.

Shit, i can't do this. Not to him. He's trusting me with this secret, this incredible secret. He's my friend. I couldn't betray his confidence.....

"Commander!"

........or could i? Just to one person?

"Hello, Tom. What can I do for you?"

"Commander, how would you like to hear some really, REALLY great news?"

He wants to know, I can tell. Finally, someone to talk to!

"I'm all ears, Tom."

"Great! You have no idea how much I need to tell someone. It's about Seven and the Doc!"

"Ensign Paris!"

No. No, no, no. Sonofa....

Turn. Turn to face him.

"He-ey. Doc. How's it going?"

"May I speak with you a moment, Ensign? Alone."

How could I do that? How could I almost tell someone? I can't believe I almost did that...

"Listen, Doc, I'm...."

"No, Mr. Paris, I understand what you were doing. Sharing my predicament with the crew. I understand."

Oh, the tone. The sarcasm....

"No, Doc. I never told anyone. I admit, I was going to, but it was so much to keep to myself! I'm real sorry. I won't tell, I promise you. I promise!"

I promise...

"Very well, Ensign."

He's walking away...The sadness in his eyes. I nearly betrayed him, and he's letting me off. That was too easy. Way too easy.

"Hel-lo, Tom!"

"You're in an awfully good mood, Harry."

"Yes, yes I am. And you are not."

"No, I'm not."

"Care to tell me why?"

"No, I don't think so. It's kind of a secret."

"A secret? Really? About whom?"

Look at that. Look at him light up around her. And her. She's not all that innocent. I've seen those looks before. He's really in love. Doc and Seven. Sounds good together.

"Tom?"

"Sorry, Harry. That's the whole secret."