Disclaimer: I do not own or claim to own any of the following characters, places, events, or lyrics. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is the property of Paramount. All song lyrics respectfully accredited to their composers:
All the Way – Sammy Cahn & Jimmy Van Heusen
Moon River– Johnny Mercer & Henry Mancini
I've Got the World on a String – Harold Arlen & Ted Koehler
Author'sNote:Set shortly after season six's "His Way."
~ AlltheWay ~
But if you'll let me love you
It's for sure I'm gonna love you—all the way, all the way.
Sometimes, Worf despaired of ever understanding his wife.
Wrestling, mind puzzles, magic tricks, loud parties, tongo with the Ferengi, her incurable need to argue with everyone on everything—they all made his head swim as if he'd drunk a barrel of the quadrant's most potent blood wine in one sitting.
Now was one of those times.
After an exhausting day of battle drills, systems checks, maintenance overhauls, and sensor sweeps, Worf was ready to return to their quarters, enjoy a filling dinner, and welcome sleep's embrace.
Jadzia, however, had other plans in mind. An impromptu dinner party in the holosuite, initiated by Dr. Bashir, had come to her attention, and she'd immediately determined to go.
Naturally, that meant Worf was going with her.
She didn't consult him of course; she knew better than to make that mistake twice. She just told him at the end of their duty shift that Julian had requested the senior staff members meet outside holosuite two at promptly 1900, dressing in proper attire and with a date, of course. From there, they would enter VicFontaine's, a Vegas nightclub program, derived from Earth's twentieth century.
Worf could think of a thousand things he'd rather do than spend hours making small talk with his coworkers and listening to what the Terrans called music. One of them being to volunteer for tomorrow's spacewalk team when they went to repair the weapons array on upper pylon three.
He was exhausted, as he knew Jadzia to be, and thus had dreaded the thought of the gathering for a full hour. When it had come time to leave, Jadzia had literally dragged him out the door, protesting his choice of clothing all the way. No matter how hard he tried, Worf could never convince her of the practicality of Starfleet uniforms, as well as their myriad uses. Why shouldn't he wear it to a gathering of coworkers?
Jadzia had merely rolled her eyes and stalked down the corridor, muttering that the gathering was one of friends, not coworkers.
Worf failed to see the difference.
Still, despite Jadzia's many idiosyncrasies, Worf loved her, and there was nothing he could do to change that. Even so, two hours into the "dinner," Worf's nerves were beginning to fray.
In reality, they'd finished eating well over an hour ago, and now were sitting about their tables or lounging at the bar, listening raptly Vic's impressive repertoire. Worf was standing stiffly to the side, not knowing what else to do or how to do it. While most seemed to enjoy the easy, free-swinging style to the tuxedoed musician's songs, Worf found it dull and often quite predictable, if not irritating. And the lyrics baffled him.
What did they mean? What significance did they hold that made the Major smile like that, or caused Odo to sway like an intoxicated Bolian, or brought such a wistful gaze to Dr. Bashir's eyes?
Worf did a double take. Unless he was mistaken, the lanky doctor's gaze was fastened on none other than Jadzia. Worf felt his lip curl just enough to expose the tips of his sharpened canines, and anger (or was it jealousy?) began to pump through his body. He took a menacing step forward.
"You don't seem to be enjoying yourself, Commander," Odo's gravelly voice broke in.
"Constable." Worf quickly stepped back and hid his agitation, but kept an eye on Bashir all the same. He drew a settling breath. "You are correct, as usual. I do not find this particular…gathering to my liking."
"Oh?" Odo turned to look at Worf, his arms folded comfortably across his chest. "Come now, Commander, surely you can't resist Vic's. Even Nerys finds it enjoyable."
"If you do not mind my saying so, I believe that Major Kira's affinity for this program exists only because you introduced it to her."
"Hmph. Very observant of you, Commander. But surely you can't be serious about not liking Vic's."
Worf turned questioning eyes on Odo's half-formed features. "You speak of it as a material place, when really it is just a holosuite program, and the people—this Vic—are merely holograms. I do not understand."
"Vic is…different," Odo said, his gaze returning to the stage.
"He is still a hologram."
"Hmph," the Changeling repeated. Then he smiled the enigmatic smile of his that Worf had come to recognize as Quark's greatest tormentor and shook his head. "Sometimes I wonder how Dax stands to live with you."
"She has expressed the same sentiment on a number of occasions."
"Now there's a surprise," Odo muttered. Worf recognized his tone as one of sarcasm—something he'd learned to disregard completely since marrying Jadzia. He was just about to ask how much longer this "party" was going to last when the music stopped and Vic's quicksilver voice began to speak into the black stick that Dr. Bashir had called a microphone.
"And now, ladies and gentlemen, in the tradition of our Tuesday nights, it's time…" he smiled winningly, "…for the dance."
An excited buzz spread across the large room, and waiters appeared to collect dishes, centerpieces, and tablecloths, while others quickly cleared a space for the dance floor.
"Dance? What dance?" Worf asked, turning to Chief O'Brien. He felt his shoulders tensing. Jadzia hadn't said anything about dancing.
"Tuesday's are the weekly dances. That's why Julian chose tonight for the party. He's been wanting to try the new Andorian waltz he learned from one of Quark's dabo girl for weeks," the Chief answered. "Oh, 'scuse me, Worf. Keiko's looking for me."
As the Chief left, Worf's shoulders sagged. A dance. Wonderful. He sensed the beginnings of a headache. No,no,no.Anythingbutdancing.Please,nodancing.
The music began—more of the same, swinging rhythm. Worf closed his eyes in utter despair.
"Why the gloomy face?"
A familiar voice teased his ear, and Worf knew that Jadzia had come to claim him. "Jadzia, I will not dance."
A pretty pout settled on his wife's face, and Worf steeled himself. No matter what she said, he would not dance.
"Just for tonight?"
"Just this once? For me?"
He set his expression in stone and refused to look at her, knowing that her radiant blue eyes would be the death of him.
"Spoil sport," she muttered, folding her arms. "Sometimes I wonder why I married you."
He chose to let that comment go without reply.
Jadzia remained beside him, arms folded and eyes fixed longingly on the dance floor. Several long minutes passed before she turned to him. "You're serious, aren't you?" Despite her words, her tone was incredulous. "You're just going to let me stand here?"
"I am not stopping you from dancing."
She quirked an eyebrow and slumped against the bar again. "Yeah, right, like you'd let me dance with anyone else. You'd probably rip their arms off if they even laid eyes on me."
Worf thought of Dr. Bashir's rueful expression and couldn't help but agree. Of course, he'd never tell Jadzia that.
"Even Odo's dancing," she muttered darkly. Worf turned his gaze to the dance floor, taking in the couples. It was true; everyone—even the shape-shifting constable—was dancing.
Odo, of course, was paired with Major Kira, and the Chief with Keiko. Dr. Bashir had brought a medical exchange student, a pretty redhead human, from the looks of it. Captain Sisko was with Kasidy Yates, a pair all the senior staff expected to become permanent. Even young Jake Sisko had come, bringing one of Quark's former dabo girls, L'Jessa.
Three more songs came and went, and still Jadzia remained at his side. Worf was just beginning to breathe without caution when Vic announced the last song, his silver hair gleaming in the spotlight.
"It's about time for our distinguished guests—all good friends of my pallie Bashir over there—to leave, so I'm gonna make this our last song of the night. Someone recently told me of a certain young lady's favorite song, and it just so happens to be in my modest repertoire." A ripple of laughter spread through the crowd as Vic winked and flashed his charming smile. Then he looked straight at Jadzia and said, "Spots, this one's for you."
As the music started, Worf felt the change in Jadzia. He could sense her practically glowing beside him as she straightened to her full, nearly two-meter height.
"When somebody loves you…It's no good unless he loves you—all the way."
As the first words of the song drifted through the room, she looped her arm through his and tugged him toward the front of the room.
"Come on, Worf, we've got to dance this one. Please? It's my favorite."
Worf was about to protest when he looked down into Jadzia's pleading eyes. The russet sheen of her hair loose about her shoulders only intensified their blue color, sending chills down his spine. He felt the strongest urge to kiss her.
"Happy to be near you…When you need someone to cheer you—all the way."
His objection died in his throat. "Fine," he conceded, allowing her to pull him onto the dance floor.
At his consent, Jadzia stood on her toes and kissed his cheek. "Thank you," she breathed, sliding her arms around him. The chills increased, and Worf shivered into her.
"I do not know how to dance," he confessed.
"It's easy—just follow my lead," she smiled, pressing close to him. "Nobody's watching, anyway."
"Taller than the tallest tree is…That's how it's got to feel."
Their closeness made it easy for Worf to pick up on the rhythm of her movements, and he found himself slipping across the carpeted floor.
"Deeper than the deep blue sea is…That's how deep it goes—if it's real."
Vic crooned on, and Worf began to relax. Jadzia's right hand held his, her left arm circling his waist.
"When somebody needs you…It's no good unless he needs you—all the way."
He slid his right arm up to the small of her back, pressing her closer to him, relishing the feel of her in his arms. Who knew how many more times he would get to do this between now and next year? With the war, nothing was certain.
"Through the good or lean years…And for all the in between years—come what may."
Jadzia moved closer to him and laid her head on his shoulder, slowing the dance to a sway. Worf's uncertainties melted away, replaced by the reality of his wife snug against him. The music had stopped bothering him. He found he almost enjoyed it.
"Who knows where the road will lead us...Only a fool would say."
They swayed gently together, pressed so closely that no one could deny they belonged together. Worf, clad in his red, black, and gray uniform, and Jadzia, draped in a floor-length blue gown that took the color of her eyes from stunning to mesmerizing. The perfect couple.
"But if you'll let me love you…It's for sure I'm gonna love you—all the way, all the way."
The music faded, and their sway drifted into oblivion. At length, Jadzia raised her head from his shoulder and gazed deep into his eyes. Those fathomless pools of blue, framed by the delicate, dark brown of her spots, spoke everything words couldn't, and sent electricity bolting through his heart.
At that moment, Worf made a pact with himself, swearing never to break it or downplay it or give it second thought: He would love Jadzia forever.
All the way.