The Unwanted by Layton Colt

Author's Notes: I'm sorry this has taken so long for me to get up, but I've been really busy with school and haven't been keeping up. I hope you aren't disappointed with this part, it's the weakest of the three by far. There's one part I wrote with Picard and Barclay that is completely corny and stupid but I couldn't think of a good way to change it. I've also written a new ending, but to get it up quickly, it's kind of abrupt, like I said before, this story has a sequel, but it's incredibly stupid and I don't want to post it so I had to change the end.

Part Three: Unrequited

Nea picked herself off the blinking console and surveyed the smoky bridge. The last thing she remembered was Tom's shout of triumph as he got the Enterprise through Myriad and then Kladie's urgent hail from engineering. Kladie started going on about trouble with the warp core and blown EPS conduits.

Then it had gone dark.

As Nea took in the situation around her, she was pleased to see Spera and Cole already on their feet keeping the hostages in line. Jork was in the cargo bay now, she had enough confidence in her people to know he'd have the situation under control as well.

Nea saw B'Elanna unconscious in Harry's arm but it didn't seem serious so she let her eyes sweep over the two without more than a cursory glance. She continued to survey the damage, stopping when her eyes reached the helm.

Tom was gone -- at first she thought he was trying to sabatouge her, that he would be behind her holding a phaser to her head -- but then she saw his blood stained hand lying motionless from behind the console. Nea ran over to him, moving faster than she thought possible.

She reached him and pulled him into her arms. He was bleeding heavily and badly burned on his hands and chest.

Picard got to his feet, and grimaced when he saw the young pilot. He had flown the Enterprise flawlessly through Myriad, only to be badly injured by a malfunction.

Concerned about Paris's condition, he stepped forward. Nea pulled out her phaser impossibly fast and aimed it at him. "Stay away from him!" she yelled.

"Jesus," Picard heard Janeway murmur as she came to stand beside him.

"He needs treatment, Nea, you need to transport him to sickbay and send for Beverly. You know her, you know she can help him. There are other's who have been injured to," Picard said motioning to B'Elanna.

"No," Nea said shaking her head. "Tom stays with me!"

Cole walked over slowly and knelt beside Nea. He was the only one she would ever consider allowing to come close to her. Cole knelt beside her and placed a hand on her shoulder. "He needs help, Nea. There's nothing you can do for him, he needs a doctor."

Nea gave a barely perceptible nod and Spera headed to a console. Tom and B'Elanna flickered away. "I've transported the injured and Dr. Crusher to sickbay," she reported.

Nea nodded and took a calming breath. She clutched her phaser tightly and got to her feet. "Alright, lets get organized, we have to do this . . . for Tom."

"That is illogical," Spera said. "Tom Paris did not want you to go through with this course of action -- completing it in his name is nonsensical."

"Logic doesn't apply to every situation! Why don't you all just get to work?!" Her two crewmen immediately did as told.

Nea walked over to the transporter and the bridge crew dematerialized -- leaving only Picard and the officers from Voyager.

"What have you done with my crew?" Picard demanded.

"They've been sent to the cargo bay," Nea said without turning.

Picard glared at her back and then walked over to Harry with Janeway.

"How badly was B'Elanna injured?" Janeway asked Harry.

"Not bad . . . I don't think, but Tom . . ."

"I know," Janeway murmured.

"He'll be alright," Picard assured. "Beverely can handle anything."

Believing her old friend Janeway nodded her agreement. "Yes, he will be fine."

* * * *

Dr. Beverly Crusher looked around sickbay in confusion. One moment she had been in the cargo bay with the entire crew. A young bajoran man was telling them to stay calm when she had been transported here.

As she looked around her eyes fell on a two unconscious people on the floor. One was not very severely injured, the other was in much worse condition and she recognized him -- Tom Paris.

Despite the fact that she didn't know where he came from and that he may very well be one of the people who had taken over the Enterprise, she wouldn't allow anyone to die in her sickbay.

She transported them both onto biobeds and got to work. It was almost an hour before she finished with Tom and could start on B'Elanna. She healed the young woman quickly and then collapsed exhausted into a chair.

"Picard to Crusher."

"Captain! What's going on?"

Picard looked at the phaser pointed at his chest. "Everything is under control. What's the condition of Tom Paris?"

"He'll be sore a couple of days but he'll recover. The woman is fine too."

"Good. I want you to stay in sickbay until further notice," Picard told her, never turning his eyes from Nea's.

"Understood. Crusher out."

Nea smiled at Picard. "You should be glad he survived or I might have just killed you."

"I'm glad he survived as well, because he's a good man and should have been involved in this in the first place," Picard sneered.

"Tom got himself in involved in this," Nea said angrily.

"I'm sure," Picard responded -- sounding less than convinced.

"He did! And he would want me to finish my mission."

"What mission, Nea? Why are you doing this?"

"No questions, Picard. I'm in charge now."

"You're slipping, Nea, you're losing control," Picard said calmly.

"I-am-not-losing-control!" Nea knew that was a lie. The bridge seemed to be spinning around her as things began to spiral. She slammed her fist down on a console, breaking the glass and bringing her hand away covered with blood. "Cole! Transport Picard, Janeway and that Ensign the hell off *my* bridge. Send them to one of the cargo bays."

Cole nodded and headed to a console.

"Nea," Picard started. "Don't do this--" He was cut off as he dematerialized and Nea smiled in satisfaction.

"Okay," she said to Cole and Spera. "Now we can start to get things done."

* * * *

Chakotay sighed in frustration. Starfleet had lost contact with the Enterprise over an hour ago. They had headed into the Mryiad asteroid cluster and are now presumed dead.

Chakotay knew better. Nea wouldn't have traveled into Mryiad without Tom at the helm and Tom would have gotten them through. The question was, why would Nea want to take the Enterprise through the asteroids and into Cardassian space?

According to the treaty Starfleet couldn't go in after them and the Cardasians could fire on them. That left the Enterprise without any backup when they were already compromised.

Well, if Starfleet wouldn't do something -- he would. He just had to figure out, exactly what he would do. His console beeped and he activated it. Neelix appeared on his screen, jovial as ever.

"Commander! Have you found Tom yet?"

Chakotay smiled mischievously, "Do you still have that Talaxian ship, Neelix?" he asked, ignoring Neelix's question.

"Why, yes, Commander. Why?"

* * * *

"We need to do something," Picard said, addressing Janeway, Harry and most of his senor staff.

Barclay, Worf, Riker, Troi and Data were all present.

"What we need to do is get to sickbay," Janeway said firmly.

Worf nodded, "Perhaps if one of you were to injure me."

Riker shook his head frustrated, "I think one of the Captains would like to be the one to go to sickbay."

Picard nodded. "Yes. I need one of you to hit me."

"I will hit you, sir," Data volunteered flatly.

Picard gave Data a cursory glance before turning to Reginald. "Why don't you do it, Barclay?" he suggested.

"Mah, me, sir? I-I don't--" Barclay stuttered.

Deanna placed a hand on his shoulder and smiled at him. "You can do it, Reg," she said encouragingly. "He gave you permission."

Reg nodded uncertainly, "All-alright . . ." Swinging back his arm, he sent Picard to the floor with one swift punch.

Picard brought his hand to his aching jaw and stared at Barclay in amazement. "Where did you learn to punch like that?"

Worf fought against a threatening smile. "I have instructed Barclay in self defense on many occasions."

"What's going on here?" the young bajoran guarding them demanded as he stalked over.

"Captain Picard has been injured," Troi said. "You need to take him to sickbay."

Jork turned to the Captain and eyed the forming bruise with a frown. "That doesn't look so serious, but I guess it wouldn't hurt, come on," he said to Picard before leading the way from the cargo bay.

* * * *

B'Elanna looked around disorientated. She was in a sickbay, but not Voyager's. She gasped when what had happened came back to her and she remembered that she was on the Enterprise.

"How are you?" asked a soft voice.

B'Elanna looked up to see a redheaded human watching her with concern.

"Who are you?" B'Elanna demanded as she sat up.

"I'm Dr. Beverly Crusher, and you are?"

B'Elanna was about to answer, when she saw Tom on the next bed. "Tom," she gasped. She saw that he was struggling to sit up. Both of the women ran to his side and Beverly ran a tricorder over him.

"I'm so glad you're alright," B'Elanna breathed. "Tom, I've been so worried. We really have to talk . . ."

"Not now," Tom said abruptly, swinging his legs over the side of the bed. B'Elanna reached out and steadied him as he shakily got to his feet.

"Mr. Paris," Dr. Crusher said authoritivly as she glared at him. "Lay back down this instant. You're in no condition to go anywhere."

"You're Beverly Crusher right?" at her nod, he continued, "okay, then listen carefully, Doc, this ship has been taked over by Maquis rebels and we are currently in Cardassian space. I'm sorry, but I can't afford to lay down."

Beverly stared at him. "The Maquis rebellion is over."

Hoisting an emergency phaser rifle over his shoulder he turned to look at her. "Not for them, it's not." Tom went to the sickbay doors -- which were, predictably, locked.

B'Elanna watched as Tom tried to gain access to the computers systems. "It's no use," she said. "Nea would have locked out all of the consoles, and we both know she doesn't make mistakes."

"Everyone makes mistakes," he countered. "Nea said she beamed all of the weapons into space, but she forgot to scan sickbay. That's one mistake, now we just need for her to make another."

Hearing voices he stumbled back to his bed and hid the phaser behind a medical cart. "Lay down," he hissed to B'Elanna. They both pretended to be asleep as the doors opened.

"Captain!" Crusher cried as Picard was practically tossed into the sickbay. Jork quickly locked the doors to sickbay once more, and ran back to the cargo bay.

"What happened?" she asked him, noting the slight bruising on his jaw.

"Never mind that, how are . . ." he trailed off as he saw Tom and B'Elanna.

Once Tom had realized Picard was the only one entering he had jumped from the bed once again and slung the phaser back over his shoulder. He had wasted no time getting back to work on the console, and B'Elanna was working right beside him.

"Well," Picard said bemusedly. "I see they're both fine."

"Oh, he's anything but fine," Beverly said, "but he refuses to rest."

"How long will he hold up?" Picard asked.

Beverly shrugged. "Depends, but when this is all over and he slows down, he's going to crash."

Picard nodded and walked over to the two younger officers. "How's it coming?" he asked.

"It's not," B'Elanna ground out. "It's impossible."

Just as she spoke, Tom looked up with a smile. The sickbay doors slide open moments later. Paris didn't waste any time with 'I told you's he turned quickly to Picard. "Picard and I will go to the bridge," he said. "B'Elanna, when I give you power back I want you to transport Nea and her gang to the brig and unlock the cargobays."

Picard followed Tom from sickbay and briefly wondered when he'd lost command of his ship. When Janeway boarded, when Nea boarded, or just now.

* * * *

"Commander," Neelix said from the helm of his ship. "Doesn't the treaty forbid us from entering Cardassian space?"

Chakotay was helping Kes -- who had insisted on coming -- organize the medical supplies when he answered. "Yes, but Nea has taken the Enterprise into their space already so we're just following their lead."

Neelix nodded. "Right."

"Don't worry, Neelix," Kes called. "Everything will work out."

* * * *

Tom and Picard boarded the turbolift and Tom called for the bridge. As soon as the doors closed, Tom got down on one knee and faced the door. He tinkered with the settings on the phaser and the aimed it at the closed doors.

"What are you doing?" Picard asked.

"I've got the phaser set to wide beam stun. No point in giving them time to retaliate."

The doors opened to the bridge and the three hijackers fell unconscious to the floor before they had time to react.

"Impressive," Picard commented.

"Thanks."

* * * *

Nea blearily looked around. She could see Spera and Cole out cold beside her and Tom and Picard at the engineering console trying to break her codes. Quietly, she stood and gained access to the console beside her.

After less than a minute Nea disappeared, along with Spera and Cole.

* * * *

Tom heard the tell-tale whine of the transporter and spun around just in time to see the last molecules of Nea and her friends dematerialize. He let out a curse and the Red Klaxons began to blare.

The computer seemed almost mocking as it announced, "Self destruct in sixty seconds."

"Nea," Picard ground out as Tom turned back to the console.

"She's trying to launch her shuttle," Tom reported.

"Stop her," Picard ordered.

"Should I stop her or should I override the self destruct," he asked calmly as the countdown reached forty seconds. Picard didn't have to answer, and Tom had already gotten to work on overriding the self destruct.

Nea's ship had flown out of the shuttlebay and began to travel off by the time Tom had aborted the self destruct.

"Contact Crusher, have her tell B'Elanna to unlock the cargobay doors," Tom said tiredly.

Picard nodded and did so. Tom collapsed down into the helm chair. He hurt all over and decided to rest for just a moment.

* * * *

As the Unwanted raced away from the Enterprise, Nea prayed Tom would be able to deactivate the self destruct like she knew he could. She didn't want anything to happen to him, but she had needed to keep him distracted.

"Captain," Jork called. "I'm picking up a ship on sensors."

"Cardassian?"

Jork shook his head. "No, it's a design I've never seen before. They're hailing."

"Answer them," Nea ordered. She gasped when Chakotay appeared on the viewscreen. "Chakotay!"

"Power down your engines, Nea."

She smiled. "What will you do if I don't?"

In answer to her question she was thrown to the floor as the Unwanted was rocked.

"Why, I'll fire on you, Nea."

Nea carefully stood. "Return fire," she growled.

* * * *

"I've set a pursuit course," Picard told Tom as the bridge crew began to file in.

"Tom!" B'Elanna called, running towards him. She was quickly followed by Harry and Janeway.

"Are you alright?" she asked. He was sitting on the floor of the bridge and looked very pale.

Tom nodded faintly. "I'm fine."

None of his friends seemed convinced. But before they could argue, Picard's voice carried through the bridge. "We've got trouble. Nea's ship is exchanging fire with an unknown vessel."

"It's Neelix's ship!" Tom exclaimed.

Picard nodded and turned to Data. "Hail Nea."

Data nodded and Nea appeared on the front screen.

"You can't fight off two ships, Nea. Why don't you surrender?"

Nea smiled in a way that clearly said 'I certainly can fight off two ships.' "I will not surrender. I have a way out, as always." She turned to Tom and her whole expression softened. "Come with me, Tom."

Tom didn't speak at first, and for one terrifying moment B'Elanna thought he might actually be considering it.

"I think I'd be safer with Manificent." he finally responded.

Nea gave him a rueful smile. "The adieu, my love."

* * * *

"Activate the Romulan cloaking device," Nea ordered.

"Aye," Kladie responded.

Cole walked up to Nea and stood beside her. "What will we do now?"

"Now? Now -- we disappear."

* * * *

Tom smiled slightly as Nea's ship disappeared from sensors. "Good luck," he whispered.

B'Elanna was watching him concerned. He turned around to face her and offered a hesitant smile. He'd hurt her, he could see that now.

"How are you?" she asked briskly.

"Fine," Tom said. "I'm fine."

"Do you have any idea what you've put me through?" B'Elanna hissed. All of the frustration she'd been feeling channeled into her words. "My god, Tom, for all I knew you were dead."

"I'm sorry, I--"

"Don't you make excuses for this, Tom Paris. You had no *right.* No right! Do you know how worried we were?"

"I just--"

"You're a part of us now, Tom. For now and always. If you're hurting we hurt. Don't you understand that?"

Tom smiled, fascinated that he had won this beautiful woman's concern. "I think I'm beginning to."

B'Elanna smiled as well, despite that she wanted to hang on to her anger. "You'll be coming back, won't you?" she asked.

Tom turned slightly and saw Harry and Janeway watching him anxiously. They really did care about him. He was part of them now, he realized. He wasn't so much of an outcast, after all.

"Go back to Voyager?" Tom asked. "Of course, it is home, after all."

The End.