Twenty Four Little Hours

Note of What Has Gone Before: Voyager's encounter with a temporal anomaly, resulted in the ship being fractured into dozens of separate moments in time, from before Voyager's journey into the Badlands to the far future.  Chakotay, the only crew member unaffected, forged alliances between the various eras to restore the ship, including a Janeway that had never met him, an adult Naomi Wildman and a Borg Seven of Nine.

Some time later, Voyager was captured by the Quarren, who erased the crew's memories and put them to work as part of the planet's labor force.  Captain Janeway, with no memory of her past, fell in love with another unknowing victim, Jaffen, and moved in with him.  Once again, Chakotay, one of the few people not on Voyager during the assault, was compelled to win over the trust of a crew and a captain who did not know him to reunite the ship.

The Spirit and the Flesh: A Record of Personal Insights into the Journey of Kathryn Janeway and Her Crew

by Chakotay

Day 593

Admittedly, it's been some time since I've picked up this journal.  I don't know why this has been the case.  Upon review of the entries, it was an activity that helped me think through some issues, and I enjoyed it.  Kathryn enjoyed reading the entries, even the ones that made her uncomfortable. Somehow, I got out of the habit.

I picked up the book a few days ago after my latest hobby caused some strain between Kathryn and me. As did the one immediately proceeding that.  I felt myself calming down immediately upon smoothing the pages open. My thoughts drifted to her as soon as I picked up the pen.  That was understandable.  She was the reason I had turned to the relative safety of this pastime. I'll go into that later.  And there had been a lot between us in the days following my last entry in this book.

When the communique from Starfleet came giving permission for the Captain to fraternize, I'm not sure what surprised me more -- that the report was even issued or that Kathryn went along with it.  I must admit that I had my heart in my throat for a while after that staff meeting.  We were finally at the crossroads.  And though I knew the woman as well as anyone can know someone, I had no idea what she would do until my invitation was accepted.  I had no idea what I would do if she had declined.  I did not want to lose her, but I wasn't sure I could continue knowing that she wouldn't cross that final line even with permission.

Thankfully, she did.  And somehow, we survived that damned vedek.  I try not to think about how close we came to losing everything over that insanity.  I prefer to think about our new and improved relationship.  Dating Kathryn publicly is better than I had imagined it would be.  She's been freer in showing her naughty sense of humor.  It's not the Circle kind of naughty.  That would probably frighten the crew.  But she has been willing to show that she can be just like one of the guys.  And I really enjoy the more tender looks she'll give me that I can now return.  This new arrangement has made me finally feel like she really loves me and that there will be a future for us beyond Voyager.

I even find the Circle easier to tolerate.  There doesn't seem to be the same kind of competition there once was.  They still play and the relationship with the Mistress remains intense, but I've felt that the long term bonds have substantially changed since the wedding.  I see Torres and Paris ending up with Kim somehow, someway.  And I strongly suspect that Kathryn and I will end up with Seven.  There was something about the ex-Borg's consideration of me as an option that night she was in a food-induced frenzy.  Kathryn has admitted that there is a growing curiosity about me.  And I suspect that there is an appreciation also.  Seven has such an attachment to Kathryn. And given the relationship she had with Mark and Susan on Earth,  I could easily see her moving Seven into our relationship.  She is a beautiful, sensual woman and I've grown very fond of her.  But I'm not sure how I'd feel about sharing Kathryn with her. Seven of Nine, sexual partner Two of Three.  That's a bit much to handle.  For now, I'll just enjoy what we have and deal with any change when I'm forced to.

Dating has made us both very creative about wardrobe.  Kathryn likes dressing for me.  Actually, I think she likes having crewmen check her out and driving me crazy.  Anyway, I had this in mind when I was studying the trades database for a new hobby.  I was looking at tailoring for myself.  But then I came across cobbling.  The shoes I saw were very attractive, and I thought they would look great on Kathryn's well pedicured feet.  I also liked the idea of the intricate handiwork it would require.  Such activities can be very relaxing.  It's so easy to let the mind go while the hands are preoccupied.

Kathryn gave me the most exquisite look of confusion when I produced my newly replicated Brannock device to measure her feet.  I'd never seen quite that expression on her face.

"You want to make me shoes?" She asked with an exquisitely arched brow.

I found myself smirking.  "Just humor me, Kathryn.  If they look terrible, you'll never have to wear them."

"And what is that thing?"

"It's a device to measure the foot," I replied.  "It's a very old design -- from the 20th Century."

She sighed.  "I know you like to be authentic.  How do we do this?"

That was a little awkward, because I didn't really know anything beyond how her foot should fit into the device.  She was on her sofa in a wraparound robe.  Her hair was damp from a bath.  I knelt in front of her then took her right foot in my hand.  I placed it firmly against the heel cup, keeping her foot flatly on the device.  After checking the length indicated, I slid the arch pointer to the ball of her foot.  The casual cobbler might miss this key element in ensuring a correct measurement.  My hands were constantly moving over her foot, firmly grasping her beautifully balanced form.  I could feel the muscles under my touch, the soft skin as I slid the width bar in place.  I was completely between her open legs at that point with my head at a most intriguing level.

"No wonder women loved to buy shoes," she commented drily.  "I wonder how 20th Century husbands felt about this?"

I glanced up at her.  "I'm certain that the ladies then weren't shopping in their lingerie.  I'm also certain that most of them had on underwear."

She harumphed at me and spread her legs a fraction more before leaning back on the sofa.  "Will this take long?"

"I just need a few measurements on each foot," I said tightly. It was getting hard to concentrate knowing what was a few inches from my face.

I carefully put down the Brannock device and my padd.  Then I leaned forward pushing her robe apart as I moved closer.  Without further word, I fastened my mouth on her glistening clit tasting and teasing and nibbling and pulling at it and the sensitive lips around it.  She moaned loudly.  I held her down to keep her from bucking off the couch.  I worked her until she was shaking and begging me to finish her.  I complied and was rewarded with her lovely gasps and cries of pleasure.  When I was finished I licked my lips savoring her essence and stared at my handiwork.  She was sprawled almost obscenely with the robe and her legs open, her eyes closed and her breath coming in pants.

"Thank you, Chakotay," she panted.  "Is there anything I can do for you?"

"Return the favor," I replied my voice was husky.

I stood up and undid the front of my trousers.  Kathryn opened her eyes at my movements.  She stared at me incredulously, but she was licking her lips.  She's often said I could be too much of a gentleman.  She liked it when I would occasionally use her like this.  I allowed her to lick me thoroughly along the shaft and around my sack before I firmly took hold of her head and fucked her mouth until I came down her throat.  She swallowed it all.  Then she stood, grabbed me by my waning erection and dragged me to the bedroom.  Like I said, she liked me to use her.

I've always prided myself on my knowledge of Kathryn Janeway.  But then the ship got caught in that fracturing temporal anomaly -- a word I've grown to loathe almost as much as she does.  I never thought that my knowledge of how my beloved Captain thinks and feels would determine whether or not Voyager survived.  Days later and I was still rattled over the whole ordeal.  Everything could have gone the other way so very easily.

My heart dropped upon walking onto the Bridge after leaving Sick Bay.  The buttoned down, pinned up Kathryn was the last person I thought I could reason with.  The weirdness that has been life in the Delta Quadrant had not been visited upon her.  She had yet to hone her sense of whimsy.  But there was something when our eyes met that made me hopeful.  It was something beyond the shock of her number one fugitive turning up on her Bridge in command colors.  There was the subtle appreciation in her gaze.  It was the barely noticeable expression she would get when someone interested her.  No one under her command save for Tuvok was likely to know what this meant.  But I did.  That was why I agreed to try the Doctor's experimental hypo on her.  I was fairly certain that I could reach her.  I needed her to get through this and help me find my way back to my Kathryn.

Of course, I have to admit that the idea of winning her over once again was appealing.  Kathryn was leaning back into me quite closely as I dragged her off the Bridge.  She was shaking with rage, true, but she also managed to get a full inventory of me from chest to thighs as we exited into another time frame. When I gave her some space in the corridor, she looked me over even while demanding proof for my perceived lunacy.  I was startled at how much her sexuality was always a big part of her persona. I had noticed it before, and I had grown accustomed to it in my own time.  I knew what passed between us in that corridor. And thus the battle between us was joined as we struggled to save the ship.

It was very difficult not to tell her everything about our relationship in the present.  But there wasn't time.  Besides, with all things that could go wrong in handling a temporal anomaly, I was afraid that anything I told her about us or about the Circle could in some way alter what we'd achieved. I wasn't willing to take the risk. That's why I bent the truth when she finally asked me.  It wasn't really lying, I reasoned.  There have been a few lines we haven't crossed.  There were no farm animals involved in our relationship. So, I felt safe in the obfuscation.

My resolve didn't keep Kathryn from pushing on the subject.  Her consideration of me grew more bold as our adventure continued.  The wariness was replaced by warmth.  It was thrilling to know that there was something fundamental about our chemistry.  It was not working together under extreme circumstances that brought us closer.  She saw something in me from the first.  Through some strange luck and timing which is a matter of record, we managed to right the timeline.  I'm hoping that somewhere in the cosmos, the gods are tired of testing our mettle over and over with these things.  We have thoroughly done the anomaly.  It's time to move on.

I hadn't realized how much the encounter with the early version of Kathryn had on me until I was standing in front of the current one. While I was in the fractured time, my focus was on gaining her trust so that we could get out of that predicament.  However, I was aware of being so close to a Kathryn who didn't know me as a lover and in a situation where I couldn't have her.  I didn't know if we would ever be together that way again. When my lover was finally standing before me, I realized how much I missed her and how frightening that was for me.  Lust hit me hard during the debriefing.  She was all warmth and concern and the promise of comfort alone when the time allowed. It took all of my self control to get through the meeting and wait impassively in my seat for the others to leave.

Kathryn looked at me with a raised brow.  "Is there anything else, Chakotay?"

"Twenty four hours, Kathryn," I replied locking my gaze onto hers.

She colored ever so slightly.  Then she smiled.  "I don't know if this situation qualifies.  You were with me -- or a version of me -- all the while."

"I was with a version of you that I could not have," I countered.  "I might never been with you again.  That is a qualifying trauma in my opinion."

"Very well," she replied.  "That would be in six hours."

Her voice was calm enough, but the look in her dark eyes made me wonder who was lusting after whom.

I decided to bring the shoes at the last minute.  They had been finished before the whole anomaly ordeal began.  I had even made a box for them.  I noticed it as I left my quarters and picked it up on a whim. Kathryn was less than enthusiastic.

"I have heard tell of men who bring flowers or even wine in the hopes of seducing a female they fancy," she said drily.

I considered her thoughtfully.  She had changed into clingy slinky red night gown and was wearing a scent that makes me want to devour her whole.  I didn't think persuasion was an issue.

"I don't need any help here," I replied.

She arched a disdainful brow and took the box from me.

"The House of Chakotay?"

I shrugged and pulled out a silver shoe horn and knelt at her feet.  She eased down onto the sofa.

"I do like how this shoe thing involves a lot of kneeling," she quipped offering me her left foot.

I said nothing but I did glare at her as I gently removed her slippers.  She opened the box and pulled out the black leather pump.  Her expression shifted from skepticism to appreciation as she gently fingered the stitching then rubbed the soft leather along her cheek. Without a word, she held it out to me expectantly.

I took the shoe then slipped it onto her foot using the shoe horn to bring her heel into place.  She extended her leg to look at the shoe.  Her expression was intent.  Again, she said nothing.  She simply held out the other shoe.  I complied to her unvoiced request and put on its mate.

After gazing at her feet for a while seated, Kathryn rose and walked to her full length mirror.  She walked slowly as if she was savoring the feel of the leather on her feet. At the mirror, she hitched her nightgown high up onto her thighs and looked at her legs and feet from different angles.  I was pleased and surprised at the affect the shoes had on her.  I found myself sitting on my heels staring dumbly at those amazing legs in those shoes.

Kathryn ended my reverie.

"Chakotay," she said huskily.

I looked up at her eyes.  She was standing there with her night gown hitched up and gazing at me with such lust and longing that I was shaken by it.  That was a look the other Kathryn did not show me.  It reminded me powerfully of why I was there.  I rose quickly to press my body against hers putting my thigh between hers.  My hands slid down the silken material to cup her ass with both hands pressing her crotch high on my thigh as she looped her arms around my neck. She moaned against my mouth as I covered hers.  I had waited for that kiss for so long.  I know that Kathryn loves to kiss.  It was the one thing that I had to fight hard not to do with the other one.

"Kathryn," I whispered once the kiss was broken.  I hoisted her up to wrap her legs around my waist.

"Don't wait, Chakotay... please," Kathryn implored as she sought my lips again.

That suited me.  I wanted in her.  I needed to feel her tight heat pulsing around me.  My patience was at its ebb, but somehow I managed to gently place the Mistress on the bed then strip out of my clothes before falling on top of her.  I left Kathryn relatively clothed.  The straps of her night gown were shoved down to reveal her breasts and the hem was pushed up over her waist to make everything else accessible.

Gods, she was already wet.  As I pushed into her, she wrapped her legs around me.  I felt the back of the shoes on my spine.  I pumped into her slowly.  Our eyes never left each other's.

"You wanted me from the start," I murmured.

"Arrogant bas..."

I thrust hard into her making her moan.

"I know your eyes, Kathryn," I murmured.  "You looked at me in a way that I couldn't mistake..."

She said nothing, but the glint in her eyes told me that I had hit on the truth.

"I wanted you, too," I whispered against her lips.  "Seems like I always have."

Kathryn said nothing.  Her eyes glazed with emotion as she countered my rhythm.  She wanted to bring us off.  I didn't mind.  This was only the first round.  I kissed her hard then really started to pump into her.

Later, after we had each other in every position and orifice, Kathryn still wore those shoes.  I was exasperated but amused as I stumbled out of bed to remove them.

"Kathryn, I'm pleased that you like the shoes, but you can't wear them under the covers.  Besides you may jab me with those heels in your sleep," I said.  She mumbled in response as I removed them.  As I spooned up behind her and drifted into sleep, I didn't realize that I had created a monster.

"I want more shoes," Kathryn announced over breakfast.


"Shoes, Chakotay," she whispered urgently.  "Something strappy."


"Yes," she said as if I was extremely dim.  "That would make my feet feel encased and it would show off Tom's lovely pedicures."

"Of course," I replied.  "Sounds comfy."

"When can you be finished?"  She demanded tersely.

I found myself smiling.  "They can't be made overnight, Kathryn.  It's detailed work and I do have other duties."

She glowered at me over her coffee knowing that I was provoking her.  "You are a very resourceful man, Commander.  I'm sure you'll find time to please me."

Blasted woman used a tone she knew would hit me below the belt, making me stand up and pay attention, so to speak.

"Give me a couple of days," I replied softly.

Kathryn loved the strappy shoes, and that led to a night of incredible love making and a demand for a pair of lace-up boots.  That lead to the satin mules.  Those lead to an incredible array of sandals and those to a strange pair of heavy shoes with a platform for soles.  After several weeks, even the very creative sex was not enough to offset the pain in my lower back, the eye strain and the cramping in my fingers.  The demands continued unabated. Kathryn's hunger for footwear was insatiable, and I couldn't say no to the Mistress.

It was the Doctor who intervened.  He called Kathryn in on the diagnosis, because I had been more than a little uncooperative about his treatment plan.

"While I appreciate your enthusiasm for a pastime -- I know I've been passionate about mine --  you're causing considerable damage to the muscles in your back and fingers from the repetitive movements and your posture while working at it," he said.  "Your recovery will require several regenerative treatments and therapy.  I strongly recommend a moratorium on your pastimes."

"For how long?" Kathryn asked.

"Indefinitely, in my opinion."

Kathryn looked deeply disappointed.

"What if I were more careful..."

"No, Chakotay," she said quietly.  She gently took my hands in hers.  "I appreciate what you want to do, but this is not worth harming yourself.  I prefer your hands and back were healthy for reasons other than shoes."

The Doctor hadn't wanted to hear that, but I did.  She looked so worried and contrite, I wanted to kiss her senseless right then and there.  Somehow, I refrained until we were alone in her Ready Room. She wouldn't let me have her, of course, but I did kiss her until her eyes crossed and sex on the desk became something to be seriously considered.

In the days following my regeneration procedures and therapy, I considered other hobbies.  I found nothing that interested me -- not even ones that had attracted me before.  This puzzled me for a time.  Eventually, I realized that it was that having someone else interested and enthusiastic about my hobby made the thought of tinkering on something alone unappealing.  I decided to find a pastime that the crew could enjoy. That's when I discovered model trains.

The intricacy of those miniature vehicles and their environs amazed me.  But where would I share this hobby?  My quarters weren't large enough and the Holodeck wasn't suited for a permanent physical exhibit.  The answer eluded me for a while.  Then, I noticed an archival photo of an Earth restaurant's interior.  There along the walls of the restaurant near the ceiling ran an electric train.  The presence of the train was a delight to the patrons.  Perhaps Neelix would think a similar display would be popular in the Mess.

He did.  In fact, he embraced the idea with great enthusiasm. The crew reacted wonderfully the first time the train rounded the top of the Mess Hall.  Many took the time to examine the details of the little train and the structures it visited.  Naomi was enchanted by the whistle and the water tower.  Icheb would stare at it for hours.  But after a time, interest seemed to wane.  There were  few, namely Tuvok and Icheb who continued to look at the train intently.  Tuvok seemed to meditate on it while he ate. But for most, it had become part of the background.

I was talking with Neelix about these feelings when Icheb approached me.

"Perhaps it has lost popularity because it lacks realism," the young Borg suggested.

"I beg your pardon?" I asked.  I was certain that my detail had been flawless.

"I have been doing some research into this pastime," he explained.  "Real hobbyists would try as much as possible to recreate actual railroads.  This lent an element of realism to those who enjoyed it.  The train in the Mess Hall has no grounding in reality. Your buildings and water tower are from different eras."

While I doubted that any of the crewmen would notice such details, I was inclined to agree that the train needed to do more than go in an endless circle.  Perhaps that was why Torres kept suggesting that I blow it up.  I enlisted the aid of Icheb to help me build a more realistic railroad.  Thus, the C&I Railroad was founded.  We were the proud owners of the Cannonball and intent on recreating the Bug Tussle to Hooterville run.

The route was over twenty miles.  Icheb and I decided to keep the route close to the ceiling as to stay out of the way of ship's operations.  But there was the problems of bulkheads and crew quarters.  The Cannonball had a fairly straight run and we thought it would go against authenticity to have it meander all over the ship.  Icheb suggested that we use transporter technology to pass through these obstacles.  But the original Cannonball ran on coal.  That hardly seemed right.  Then I hit upon a procedure used by the old railroads when faced with similar impediments.  That was what landed us in Captain Janeway's office.

She was rubbing her forehead like her head hurt.  Then she looked at each of us in turn as if she were trying to carefully choose her words.

"Chakotay. Icheb.. I've been receiving some incredulous complaints from my department heads and some of the crew about this little venture you're attempting," she began.  "I'm hoping that what I'm hearing is an exaggeration.  Would you care to explain these plans of yours?"

Then, we did.  We went over the original railroad's route and the reasons for why absolute authenticity would bring great pleasure to the crew and how we'd found an Old Earth solution called eminent domain to bring this about.  She listened carefully to all of it.  Then she sighed.

"Icheb," she said.  "I appreciate your enthusiasm for this hobby and the research is impressive, but between your studies and assisting Seven in Astrometrics, you simply won't have the time for such a huge undertaking."

He was disappointed, but agreed.

"Why don't you go join Seven?"

After the young Borg left, Kathryn informed me that I had frightened several crewmen with my solution and that she had some additional research on such procedures that she doubted I had read.  She handed me a padd, and then told me that she had an away mission that should keep me occupied for a while.

The time on the away mission gave me an opportunity to think about the train debacle.  Harry Kim and Neelix helped me to put it all into perspective.  I had to admit upon reflection that my behavior could have been viewed as frightening when taken out of context.  And even though I had offered comparable quarters, I could understand why some crewmen didn't want to surrender theirs to the eminent domain of the railroad.  I had formulated my apologies on the way back to Voyager, and I was really looking forward to making amends with Kathryn.

But she was gone.  The whole crew save for the Doctor was gone.  And fear gripped my heart.  I couldn't even the imagine what dire circumstances had compelled the Captain to abandon ship with the entire crew.  I had visions of her battered body amidst the rubble of a wrecked escape pod.  The gods forgive me, but what I found was worse.

I understand now, Kathryn.  Now, I wonder how you ever got past it -- looking into my eyes and not finding the one you love.  Her eyes had been friendly, but polite and a little distant.  It was the gaze that reduced me to an interesting stranger at first.  I was a stranger.  A disrupter on full blast could not have been more painful.  Then, there was that man.   Not only did she not know me, she was enthralled by a man.  The affection was not born of coercion like her presence on the planet.  She seemed to like him simply because he was an attractive and interesting man, and admittedly, a good man.

It took every bit of calm, collected thought I had within me not to fly into a rage and shake her.  I had to reach her somehow.  Unlike the Captain from the fracture anomaly, I had no points of reference I could evoke.  I had to get her to trust me first, then I had to provoke her curiosity.  If there was any way to get Kathryn to wonder if there was more going on than she was being told, she would not stop digging until she knew everything.

My hands still tremble when I think about everything that was at stake.  I had to be earnest but not desperate.  I had to forget about the man she was planning to share a home with.  I had to focus on getting through whatever had been done to her mind.  I had to have faith that no matter what, Kathryn would always respond to me.  But a grave doubt remained.  She had had faith in me when the vedek controlled my mind.  She could not reach me.  There was a very real possibility that I would fail as well.

Fortune smiled upon me.  I didn't have to sit worrying about Kathryn's response while in a Brig.  There were other crewmen to save.  There were strategies to plan and their contingencies to consider.  I was griped by fear true, but there was no time to dwell upon misgivings.  That kept me from despair.  That kept me pushing.  And with the help of the crew, the mission was successful.

Suddenly, we were back on Voyager.  It seemed sudden.  In remarkably short order, the crew was back and we were about to get under way.  But all was not back to normal.  That man was on my ship.  He was in the Ready Room where Kathryn and I shared many an intensely intimate moment.  My lover was looking guilt ridden and emotionally torn.  I wanted to tear into everything and every one, but I couldn't.  My feelings were unreasonable.  Kathryn's reactions couldn't be helped.  The man was everything he seemed to be and was wounded at losing her.  It made the rage in me more intense. And time was ticking.  I wasn't even sure if Kathryn realized it.

We were in the Mess Hall shortly after Jaffen left.  There was a lot of repair logistics to cover and Kathryn wanted to be away from her Ready Room.  I think she needed to see her crew where they were supposed to be.  There was a lull in our meeting while I searched for the next issue to be covered.

"Twenty four hours," Kathryn said quietly.

I looked up to find her considering me over her cup of coffee.  Somehow that made me more angry.  I was convinced that she just felt pity for me.

"We don't have to," I replied.

"Yes, we do," she replied with quiet urging.  "You are furious, and I still feel lost.  I need you, Chakotay."

That admission undid me.  I felt a lump in my throat that was nearly impossible to swallow. "Twenty four hours," I agreed.

"That would be at the end of the next shift," she said.  "2400 hours."

I found myself smirking.  "It's kismet then."

"I'll see you in my quarters," she said.

There was to be no further discussion.  Or we would cease to be.  And as angry as I was, I couldn't allow that.  I dressed attractively, but I was not -- for the first time in our relationship -- ready to touch her.  I never wanted to touch her in anger again.  But I prepared myself for more than talk in the hopes that she could break through all that baggage.  I also brought some wine.

Kathryn was not in lingerie.  She wore a soft, clingy red dress that skimmed over her body to her calves.  Her feet were bare.  Anyone who didn't know her would think that she was relaxed, but I could tell by her posture that this was not the case.  There was a wariness in her eyes when they met mine.  She didn't know what to expect from me.  She was not taking me for granted.  I was grateful that.

"Thank you for the wine," she murmured.  "Nice choice.  Have a seat."

There was a tray of appetizers set out.  I tried to relax on the sofa while Kathryn opened the bottle.

"You know how ironic this is," she said quietly.

"It is irony worthy of Q," I replied ruefully.

"I thought about him," Kathryn said.  "He would have shown up by now to gloat."


We sipped our wine in silence.

"Why didn't you want to come tonight?"  She asked.  "Situations like this are why we agreed to the twenty four hour rule."

I wanted to leap from my seat and scream, but I remained still and met her gaze levelly. "I don't think it's wise to try to mend a relationship when I'm this angry."

Kathryn flinched at my tone.  "And I'm frightened, Chakotay. But I believe you once said to me that you wanted the closeness even with the anger.  Don't shut me out."

We sipped wine in silence for a while.  My ire had not diminished, but it felt good to be near her.  She looked tired.  I began to wonder what kind of toll the whole ordeal had taken on her physically.  Somehow, that wasn't how the question came out.

"Did you love him?"

"No, Chakotay," she replied.  Her voice had no waiver.  She didn't hesitate. "Even in my altered state there was a barrier.   He never had my heart."

"You offered him a place on Voyager," I said.

She shrugged.  "It seemed the polite thing to do.  I was relieved that he turned me down.  Once I was back to myself, I felt nothing for him save for gratitude for his help."

"But he had your body," I countered.

"Yes," she sighed.  "You know that I was not in my right mind."

"You came with him?"  I pressed for some reason that eluded me.

"Yes," she replied.  "He was caring and giving and more vanilla than a ton of sugar cookies.

That startled me.  There was a twinkle in her eyes, but she was not smiling.  "Even in my altered state I was getting bored."

We lapsed into a more comfortable silence.  I nibbled at the food and had more wine.  I felt her watching me.

"I didn't report you to the authorities," Kathryn said after a while.  "Nor did I allow Jaffen to."

I knew that.  Deep down I knew that.  But I was glad she told me.

"You reached me, Chakotay.  Despite everything done to my mind, I knew that I trusted you," she whispered.  "And I knew how hurt you were and how scared you had been.  And I know how angry you are."

Kathryn moved to stand in front of me.  She plucked the glass from my hand then set it aside.  She tilted my head up to cradle it in both of her elegant hands.

"As a dear, wise friend said to me on a similar occasion said, the time for talking is over.  I know you'd never deliberately harm me," she whispered close to my mouth.  "Besides, you know how much I like it rough."

Her mouth covered mine as she straddled my thighs.  I moaned and opened my mouth in surrender.  I thought I would put up stronger resistance.  I had been kidding myself.  My hands roamed of their own volition to cup her bottom and bring her body closer to mine.  The anger dissipated.  My control waned.  A frenzy took over.

I don't remember how we got to the bedroom.  That lovely dress did not survive.  I tore it from her writhing body.  Kathryn didn't seem to care.  She was pliant and willing and hungry.  Somehow, I was naked as well.

I looked at her on her bed gazing up at me with rampant hunger in her eyes.  For the tiniest instant, I wondered if she looked at Jaffen that way.  But I shoved the thought away ruthlessly.  If I didn't reclaim her then and now, I would never have her again.

"Don't move," I whispered against her ear.  "I need to remind you where you belong."

I kissed her hard as I pushed into her.  Kathryn grunted at first.  She wasn't quite ready, but the moan during my second thrust was not in pain.  I softened the kiss to explore her mouth while I slowly pumped into her.  The Mistress was not false when she said she had missed rough handling.  My caresses would not have left bruises, but they kept her gasping against my mouth.  I was not letting go of the kiss.  Not right then.  I used my tongue in her mouth the way my erection worked her tight wetness.  I was claiming both.

Kathryn wanted to move.  It was taking every bit of will she had not to buck against me -- to counter my rhythm and bring herself relief from what was building insider her. I looped one arm under a thigh and pulled it up giving me a deeper angle of thrust.  That did it.  She was wailing into the kiss and trembling with the powerful waves that rocked her.  Her orgasm gripped me and I spent as well.

Normally, I would have melted into her plaint body and held her until we either slept or went for round two.  But I wasn't ready for that.  I gently pulled out of her and stood beside the bed.

"Chakotay?"  Kathryn asked muzzily.

"Rest a moment, Kathryn.  I'm not going anywhere," I replied.

I went to her bathroom and ran a bath of hot fragrant water.  My first thought had been to drag her into the shower by the hair and scrub her skin raw, but that would be too harsh a punishment for something that was not her fault.  But I had to make sure for myself that he was completely obliterated from her body, so I compromised.

Kathryn was barely aware of my lifting her and carrying her to the tub.  She nuzzled my chest with a small smile as I carried her.  She whispered my name -- not his -- as my arms went around her.  That made me smile.  She didn't really wake up until I was washing her hair.

"Was my hygiene not up to your standards, Mister?"

"You looked and smelled wonderful," I replied.  "This is just something I need to do."

She shrugged closing her eyes once again.  "Far be it from me to turn down a free shampoo."
I gently scrubbed her entire body with her favorite bath sponge. I dried her with equal care then wrapped her in a towel and returned her to bed.

"I really should have kept you in service," she said languidly.  "You are quite good at this."

"I'm highly motivated at the moment," I replied as I dried myself.

"What happens now?"

I smirked at her.  She knew that expression well.  I watched her lick her lips in anticipation.  "We go for round two, Kathryn.  We aren't finished by a long shot."

I was gentler this time, but no less determined.  I licked her until she came.  I had her suck me until I came.  Then after more rest I had her again in all of her orifices.  And as we lapsed into a coma of exhaustion I was satisfied that Jaffen had been razed from her body and mind and soul.

"Diner tonight?" she asked sleepily.

"Sure," I yawned.

"Pick me up here after day watch," she said before falling soundly asleep.

I spent the day making long overdue apologies to the crewman affected by the C&I Railroad.  All of those conversations peaked my interest in another hobby.  I put in the parameters of something that the public would enjoy and would speak to the uniqueness of life on Voyager.

"And that lead you to interpretive dance?"  Kathryn asked incredulously.

"That's only a part of it, Kathryn," I replied impatiently.  "It's called performance art.  I would use my body in various ways to symbolize life and experience on Voyager.  San Francisco has a rich history of performance art."

She was still staring at my black leotard and white face makeup with an expression of complete puzzlement.  "A practice that was outlawed there a hundred years ago."

"That was due to a government with mime biases," I said dismissively.  "We are much more open-minded on Voyager... aren't we?"

Kathryn was staring at me with what only could be described as a long-suffering expression.

"Do you still have that journal?"  She asked.

"Yes... why?"

She sighed heavily.  "I think the crew needs some time to recover from their ordeal.  I don't think they can handle the nuances of performance art.  Besides, I have various ways to use your body in something that could be called art.  Why don't you change and we'll discuss it over dinner."

And that's how I came to be making this entry tonight.  Kathryn had quite a few uses for my body tonight.  I think I'm going to be sore for a while.  But she's here in bed with me so I can't complain.  And I found I have all the hobby I need right now.

Read All About It!!! For those interested in making their own shoes (and I had no idea until researching this that there are people who do,) go to:  http://www.marywalesloomis.com/ .  For those interested in model trains, go to: http://www.nmra.com/ . For those interested in performance art... I can't help you.

55: Three is a Magic Number