Author's Note: This is a collection of prompt-based ficlets from Q's POV. Some of them may contain sex or violence, at least the energy being equivalents thereof; check warnings at the top of each individual chapter. Also, see below for table of contents, which has summaries of the ficlets.

Prompt: No

He had everything planned out. It was more than slightly ridiculous that it should have come to this, that he should be depending on a mere mortal for anything whatsoever, but strictly speaking it was the human's fault that he was in this situation. He wouldn't have been so desperately lonely, so bored and unhappy, that he would need to stoop to asking to join a crew full of mortals, if the human hadn't thwarted his attempt to prove to the Continuum that he could still construct a brutal, impassable test by, well, passing his test. Or getting his weaker-willed crewman to pass it, anyway.

Okay, so strictly speaking the Continuum told him to take a hike because he'd never been supposed to offer the powers of the Q to Riker in the first place, so maybe the fact that Picard had kept Riker from accepting was a moot point, but Q was pretty sure that had he succeeded, it would have been a fait accompli and his political enemies in the Continuum wouldn't have had quite so much ammunition. Now they were debating his fate in a closed session, and he wasn't allowed to return to the Continuum until they summoned him, and he was... not worried, of course, he was a Q and the Q were never worried. Nothing he'd done merited a severe punishment. He'd get another slap on the wrist. He was sure of it. Well, pretty sure. Which, given his nigh-omnipotence, was better than absolute certainty from a human anyway. But that wasn't the point.

He was bored. And... alone. The Q were never supposed to be alone. If he chose to leave the Continuum for centuries at a time because they were boring as mud, that was his call, but the fact that he wasn't allowed to go back was galling. And it was all Picard's fault, so really, the human owed it to him to give him someplace to go... somewhere he could feel wanted, even if only because of the value his powers could bring the mortals.

The truth was, he actually had respect for this tiny mortal. Picard had defeated him twice now. Okay, the Farpoint test had been maybe easier than it needed to be, since Q had not paid as much attention as he should have to the fact that one of the descendants of humanity he'd put on trial was actually half-Betazoid and a fully functioning empath... but offering a human omnipotence should have been a slam dunk. The species had proven in the past, time and time again, that they weren't mature enough to understand how immature they were, and they'd never turned down offers like that before. The fact that *this* human not only understood the danger, that choosing to become omnipotent would have destroyed Riker's humanity, but actually managed to persuade Riker to give up godhood... oh, that was impressive. And then he'd beaten down the Nagilum with nothing more than the power of his words.

This was a mortal who could defeat Powers. Had defeated Q himself, and others as well. And Q wanted to be part of his team, since the Continuum had told him to get lost. He wanted... what? He wasn't sure, but it would start with being important to this mortal, being someone the human relied on. Belonging to him, because he couldn't belong to the Continuum at this very minute and it was hurting more than he'd dreamed possible. Maybe, once the mortal said "yes" and accepted him as part of his crew, Q would show him the danger of the Borg. After all, since those two human idiots and their tiny offspring had gone chasing the Borg and gotten themselves assimilated, humanity was pretty high on the Borg's "to assimilate" list, and only their distance from the Delta Quadrant had saved them so far. The Borg were sniffing around, capturing colonies near the Federation's Neutral Zone with the Romulans. If the humans weren't warned, they'd surely be assimilated. They had no hope if Q didn't help them.

The only problem was, Q had promised to stay out of the path of humanity forever. But that really wasn't fair. He'd been going to get Picard to go back on that bet, let him out of it, and then the Continuum had yanked him home prematurely to chew him out for several months in human terms. If the Continuum hadn't intervened, he wouldn't have a bet he couldn't work around to deal with. And Q's own ethics prevented him from welching on a bet completely, even with a pathetic mortal. And he couldn't mind-control the guy, not without feeling like an utter loser, or make him forget the bet completely... So he altered the human's memories, making him think that he'd promised to leave the ship and crew alone rather than to leave humanity alone. Something he could work around. And he felt bad about that, but... he was so bored, really. If he couldn't talk to Picard then he couldn't get Picard to accept him as part of the crew, and he couldn't think of anything else he was allowed to do that he might actually want more.

He kidnapped the human, blackmailing him into granting him permission to come back to the ship to discuss what Q really wanted. When he got there, he discovered his El-Aurian nemesis, much to his dismay... but he wasn't going to let her interfere either. He made his case, which he thought was unassailable. Surely Picard was intelligent enough to recognize how useful Q could be.

Picard said no.

"Simply speaking, we don't trust you."

Stung, but trying to hide it, because the only thing more pathetic than actually letting a mortal hurt his feelings was letting that mortal *see* that his feelings were hurt, Q said, "Oh. Well, you may not trust me, but you do *need* me. You're not prepared for what awaits you."

"How can we be prepared for that which we do not know? But I do know that we are ready to encounter it."

Q's eyes narrowed. Picard's calm, *smug* assertion that he and his crew and his inferior little species were ready for anything was absurd in the face of what Q knew about the Borg. "Really?"

"Yes, absolutely. That's why we're out here," Picard said.

Q stared him down. "You judge yourselves against the pitiful adversaries you have encountered so far. The Romulans, the Klingons. They are nothing compared to what's waiting. Picard, you are about to move into areas of the galaxy containing wonders more incredible than you can possibly imagine, and terrors to freeze your soul. I offer myself as guide only to be rejected out of hand."

Riker - who had, in fact, come within minutes of accepting Q's offer, who had only refused because the hold Picard had over his emotions was greater than his ambition - said, "We'll just have to do the best we can without you."

"What justifies that smugness?" Q snapped.

"Not smugness, not arrogance," Picard said, which was laughable, because it was both. "But we are resolute, we are determined, and your help is not required."

Then you'll all die, Q thought, furious, and for a moment, thought of leaving them all to it, just letting the Borg have them. But they would never realize in the moment of their destruction that they could have been saved if only they'd taken his offer. He wanted to rub Picard's nose in his own stupidity, wanted to force him to recognize why what he'd just said was unutterably wrong-headed... why he never, ever should have said "no" to something Q had wanted so very badly.

"We'll just have to see how ready you are," he said, and with a thought and a snap of his fingers, cast them across light-years, to the edge of Borg space.

Let's see exactly how much you don't need me now, mon capitaine, he thought.

Table of Contents: Because I can't put a summary that covers all of these ficlets on this fic, I'm including one here at the bottom of the first ficlet.

1. No: Based on "Q Who?" Picard says no to Q.

2. The Dying God: So Q has a conversation with a harvest god in a bar.

3. I Want For A Child: A scene from the Q war. Q goes to rescue Amanda, gets rescued himself, and has a brilliant idea on how to end the war. At least he thinks it is. Contains violence (against energy beings) and non-explicit energy being sex.

4. Scared: Q is attacked by five Q who want to rewrite his mind. While the word is not used except in the warning, this is essentially the Q equivalent of rape, and may be disturbing.

5. Gratitude: A "Deja Q" missing scene. Data's in sickbay after saving Q's life, and Q finds this unbearable.