Disclaimer: See Chapter 1. Thank you so much to Fameanon, maba7x, T'Sara, Ahlysha and Wildblume for reviewing!
"Roxanne, you are absolutely sure?" Solok asked her for the seventh time. She sighed.
"Solok, I told you. Starfleet isn't my speed. Hopefully, the VSA will be exactly where I need to be. And besides, it's not like I don't have a handsome fiance to help me out if I have trouble again, right?"
He smirked. "You will keep contact with me, once a day at the very least," he stated, leaving no room for debate.
"Yes, sir," she said, rolling her eyes and giving him a foppish salute. But he nodded in satisfaction, missing her sarcasm, and she sighed. Of course she would be keeping contact with him every day. She would need it, just to keep sane from all the Vulcans around her.
She was struck with sudden fear, the notion that she would fail completely and be left without any education whatsoever, but Solok's calm seeped into her synapses, soothing her, leaving her at peace with the situation.
"My father has allotted me weekly visitation once term starts again, so I might see you grow with our child." He sounded slightly disappointed, yet excited, and she leaned her head on his shoulder.
"Do you think your father has changed his mind about this, or is he still being stubborn?"
He was quiet for a while. "I do not know," he murmured. "But I know my mother is agreeable to you, and for the chance to get to know her new daughter-in-law."
Roxanne smiled at that. "I think I'll like your mother," she said, caressing his chest. He raised an eyebrow down at her and stroked a warm hand down her back, and she sighed into his caresses, mewling like a kitten.
"You sound like a baby sehlat," he whispered, and she grinned into his shirt.
"What, those giant bears with fangs? Well, at least I can kick ass..."
He smirked and stroked her hair. "Your presence will be sorely missed," he said suddenly, and she nuzzled further into him, feeling the call of sleep pull her eyelids down.
"I'll miss you too, baby," she whispered, closing her eyes completely. "I'll miss my favorite jerk in the whole wide world."
That earned her two fingers into a sensitive pressure point, but she nipped at his neck in reply. He growled, making to continue the fight, but she laid back down, exhaustion tugging at her bloated, rounded body. She hoped she could lose the weight she was gaining, after the baby was born, but strangely Solok seemed agreeable to the new weight. He liked the thickness of her thighs, and especially her breasts (she supposed she shouldn't be too surprised at that), and often she caught him gazing at her stomach, as if imagining the child nestled inside.
"Good night, Solok," she whispered. He purred and kissed her forehead.
"Good night, k'diwa."
Sovar was waiting for them at their gate, and Roxanne noted that his eyes lingered on their joined fingers. He opened his mouth as if to speak, then closed it again, then greeted his son.
"Welcome back to Vulcan, my son," he said, his tone neutral. But his gray eyes were cold as they looked at her.
"And welcome to she who is my son's telsu, and she who carries his child."
Roxanne bowed her head, and Sovar raised an eyebrow.
"You've much to learn about our customs, daughter," he said, his tone almost dripping with ice. She sighed and looked to Solok, whose eyes were gleaming with irritation.
"Father, mother is eager to see her again, and she needs to get inside. This trip has already tired her."
"Of course," Sovar conceded, leading them to his shuttle. "How can she do well if she has not rested?"
She felt her heart go cold, and she stood closer to Solok, suddenly regretting this entire thing. She had the feeling Sovar's thoughts on this had not changed, and if T'Pel and Solok didn't save her from what she was getting herself into, she would be headed towards a mental breakdown soon.
"How is T'Pel?" she asked, trying to change the subject.
"She is well. I believe she wants to take a trip to Shi'Kahr, though, to visit her sister. My wife's sister resides with her husband in the capital. They are both instructors at the Academy. You may meet them sometime."
"Did my paperwork go through?" she asked. Sovar nodded calmly.
"I have taken care of everything," he replied, and she bowed her head, trying to look cheerful, trying to feel happy about this. All she felt was worried.
Again, she felt Solok's soothing presence, and she leaned on him, even though Sovar looked slightly repulsed by her show. She closed her eyes and decided she didn't care, not now, not when she was tired and hot and struggling against the gravity and her own body.
"When does the term start again at Starfleet Academy, my son?"
"The Earth month of August," he replied. "Mother will be pleased to have me home again for three months, I am sure."
"Indeed," the ambassador said. "She went to the market earlier today to get sweet potatoes. Do you like sweet potatoes, Roxanne?"
"Yes," she said. "I've always liked them."
"And you, Solok?"
Her fiance raised an eyebrow. "The cafeteria at the Academy has served them before, but I have not tried them."
"They go well with cinnamon," she muttered into his shoulder, and she felt a burst of surprise and what felt like arousal from him. Sovar turned around.
"Forgive me, daughter, but I did not understand what you said."
"She was telling me how to prepare them," Solok stated, covering for her. She smiled. "I will pass on the information to mother."
The ambassador stared at her coldly, but she simply closed her eyes again and sighed. "How far away is your house?" she asked Solok.
"Still another ten minutes," Sovar replied for him. "I wouldn't suggest falling asleep, daughter."
She squeezed her eyes shut and clenched her fist, then relaxed. Solok stroked her hair.
"Are you unwell, Roxanne?" he murmured, his voice tinged with concern. She opened one eye.
"Solok, I'm tired," she said sleepily. "Your kid is taking it out of me."
"Perhaps you should have considered that before mating with my son," Sovar said, and she felt the sting of tears behind her eyes. Solok, on the other hand, straightened and said something to Sovar in Vulcan before holding her tighter to his chest.
"Rest, ashaya," he whispered. "We will be home in a few minutes."
"At which time, you should begin instructing her on how a wife of Vulcan behaves," Sovar interjected, his voice still cold. She nodded.
"That's a good idea," she said cheerfully. She would win this game against Sovar, this battle of wills. She had already beaten Solok at his own game, and she wasn't about to be told off by this grouchy old conservative.
She had Solok on her side now, and T'Pel, and her mother, and Sisko and Sicily. She had a team, and he had no one. The devil had come alive again in this old dotard, but she would seal the deal with a smile and an unquenchable human spirit.