In the silence of her mind, her eyes speak the truth.

I heard that line somewhere I don't know where. I think it was about a woman not thinking with her head, but rather her heart. Unfortunately, thats not the case with her. Her mind, her intellect is gone. The Doctor says theres nothing he can do. She cannot speak, cannot hear or understand. But he says that her heart, her emotions, are intact.

She speaks with her eyes now, where once she spoke in cold, modulated tones, face and eyes a stone mask. Her eyes have always spoken to me, however. So quietly that nobody else could hear their whispered pleas.

Her eyes spoke to me, and mine spoke back, even as the words from my lips pushed her away.

Such a contradiction.

All that time lost.

Sands through the hourglass of our lives.

I heard that somewhere, too, and I don't know where. Perhaps in one of the books of poetry that I used to read, eternities ago.

Before her. Before this.

I had always assumed that if she were to die although I had thought that an impossibility it would be in one of our many battles. Perhaps with the Borg, and she would give herself to save us. I know she would have. Or perhaps during a surprise attack on an alien world, saving my life. She would do that, too.

But this this cursed disease.

Its ironic, in its tragic way. She was so strong. Stronger than anybody on this ship. And I'm not just speaking of her physical strength. She had a strength of will stronger than anyone I've ever met. Stronger than my own.

And now she lies there. Listless, unmoving. Nearly dead. I would think she was if it wasn't for her eyes.

Once upon a time I told her she had beautiful eyes. She was surprised, and I quickly changed the subject. That night I spent three hours yelling at myself. How could I have let my guard down? How could I have given her a clue as to what I felt? How, how, how

How could I have not told her? How could I have not said the words while they still meant something?

How could I have let this happen to her?

The Doctor and Chakotay tell me it wasn't my fault. When I ordered her to take shore leave, I didn't know about the virus. I didn't know that it would target her because she was Borg. I didn't know.

She knew almost right away. She could feel it eating away at her mind. She couldn't remember things that she used to be able to. She fell. Within two days she had lost a quarter of her brain capacity and the use of her left arm and right leg.

Within two weeks she was confined to Sickbay, neatly arranged on a biobed. She still remembered some things, however. Names, mostly. She would smile. When I came to see her, she would smile at me. Nothing like the small smirks she gave before. These smiles lit up her face, and stretched to her eyes.

Now they live solely in her eyes. Those beautiful, blue eyes. Sightless, beautiful eyes.

The Doctor says I'm the only person she recognizes anymore. He says she only smiles for me. Sometimes I wonder how she knows I'm here. I've never touched her since she became confined to that bed.

I've been afraid. Afraid to let her know how I feel when I was going to lose her. The inevitability of that fact weighed on me. Held me back. I was afraid. Afraid of losing her so soon after finding her. Afraid she would say she didn't feel the same. Afraid that she would say she did.

So now I stand here. Watching her. My fears and anger and self-hatred holding me back, still. My courage and love and self-confidence pushing me forward.

I take a step, then pause. The Doctor watches me closely. He knows what I'm about to do. He hands me the hypospray. I want to say thank you, but that would be the entirely wrong word. I want to scream and rant at his uncaring nature. But that would be entirely untrue. He loves her. As I do.

I step over to her, and her eyes start to smile. She cannot see me, cannot hear or smell me yet she knows that I am here. I touch my fingertips to her cheek. The silent smile brightens. I touch my lips to hers. I touch the hypospray to her neck.

Even as she dies, the hypo working quickly, she dies with a smile in her eyes. Beautiful, beautiful eyes.

My beautiful, beautiful Seven. Oh how I love you.

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