“Bridge to Commander Janeway”
Rachel was immediately startled from her sleep.
“This better be good. It’s 0300hrs Lieutenant.”
“It is mam”
“We’ll go on!”
“You might want to report to the bridge.”
“Is there a reason you can’t just tell me?”
“I would prefer your presence Commander.”
“Fine. On my way.”
Rachel stepped out of the turbo lift.
“We have located the alien vessel.”
Her eyes widened as she braced the railing.
“It’s on screen mam”
On the viewscreen, Rachel’s eyes focused on the badly damaged ship.
“I’m picking up The Captain and Chakotay’s life signs. But they are weak.”
“Beam them to sickbay. Now. That’s an order.”
“I’m trying. I keep losing them.”
“Try harder. Compensate. Do your job!”
“Sickbay to the bridge. I have them.”
Rachel stared down at her shoes. Tears beginning to well.
“Thank you, Doctor. Could you please contact Admiral Janeway.”
Rachel took her seat.
“Alright. The rescue mission is over. But I still want to know who they are and who attacked them.”
Naomi stepped onto the bridge.
“Naomi. You just missed all the fun. We’ve got them back. But I want you to lead the team to find out everything you can about that ship.”
“Right, well, I’ll be in sickbay. You’ve got the bridge”
Rachel took her time walking the familiar corridors to sickbay.
How was she to begin?
How was she to explain?
What would Harry say?
She had taken his seat.
She was in a maternity uniform.
The Admiral was onboard.
She paused in front of sickbay’s doors. She needed a moment to compose herself.
They swished open.
Her eyes were greeted by Captain Harry Kim standing next to the Doctor, in front of Chakotay and Kathryn who were seated, hand in hand, on the biobed.
Rachel approached Harry.
She stood in front of him, avoiding eye contact with her parents.
“Keeping my seat warm I hear?”
“Rachel it’s okay. You did the right thing. Your mother and the doctor have updated me on everything.”
Rachel awkwardly looked at her mother, then to the floor and finally, back to him.
“It’s good to have you back.”
“Thank you. The Doctor has given me the all clear so I’m off to my quarters. Congratulations on your pregnancy too. And the bridge is still yours! If you don’t mind though, there are some things I want to talk to you about, so could you join me in my quarters at 0800hrs tomorrow.”
“Of course sir.”
Harry left sickbay.
The Doctor, still oblivious to unspoken cues, stood with his arms crossed, delighted with his work.
Rachel turned slightly and gave him that classical Janeway death stare.
“Ah um Computer, deactivate EMH.”
Rachel turned to her parents, before collapsing in Chakotay’s arms.
“Oh, sweetie. It’s okay. I’m here.”
His hands rubbed her back as he comforted her.
Kathryn put her hand on Rachel’s back as her head fell on Chakotay’s shoulder.
Rachel looked up into her father's deep brown eyes.
“I missed you so much. Are..are you okay?”
“Never been better, thanks to the doc and your command skills of course.”
Cracking the classic Janeway smirk, Rachel put her arm around Kathryn.
“So I’m going to be a grandfather! Spirits!” He laughed.
“Yep,” Rachel remarked, rubbing her 15 week bump.
In unison, Kathryn and Chakotay stood and embraced their daughter.
Clearly, they had had a deep conversation before she got there. They never showed this much affection together.
“Um, I could set up the guest quarters for you both. Mom’s been staying with me, but I doubt there is room for the three of us. Plus, I’m sure you two would like some alone time.”
“How about, we grab some breakfast in your quarters first, and then we can talk about where I can stay.”
Rachel’s gaze met her mothers. Clearly, Kathryn had not expressed her true feelings yet. Rachel had to get them alone.
After a site-to-site to avoid run ins, Chakotay set the table in Rachel’s quarters.
“So, have you felt the baby kick yet?”
“Actually last night. Mom fell asleep on my shoulder, and the little one kicked her so hard it woke her up!”
“I remember when you used to do that!”
With Kathryn out of ear short, frantically packing some things in a bag to take to the guest quarters, Chakotay added, “I’m glad you both are getting along.”
“We have basically been together except for the time I’m on the bridge. We have had a lot of time to talk.”
Kathryn, who was still hoping Chakotay would agree to the guest quarters offering, walked into the main room.
“I know you haven’t made a decision yet, but I’m going to take this to the guest quarters.”
Chakotay nodded and watch her leave.
“Seriously! I thought you would be jumping out of your skin to spend time with her! She wants this.”
“Can’t I spend time with my daughter?”
“I know I know. I just, I don’t know. Can I ask you something?”
“Does she still love me?”
“Are you serious! She is crazy about you! I think almost losing you made her want you even more. But you avoiding spending more time with her isn’t helping. What was she like when she came to sickbay?”
“All over me. Though, only briefly. Then it was Admiral Janeway.”
“Well, I could have been more affectionate.”
“You have been apart for 15 weeks, no one said it was going to be easy.”
“Do you think she will marry me?”
Rachel stared blankly. “Wait, what?”
“I said, do you think she will marry me?”
“Of course she will! Are you crazy! She actually told me the other week that she wanted to marry you. So, are you going to ask her?”
“I am. But you have to keep this between us. Just for now.”
“My lips are sealed!”
The doors swooshed open.
“What are you two planning!”
“What! Mom, really! Nothing! Seriously.”
Kathryn, with a smirk, approached them. She placed one hand on Rachel’s cheek and the other on Chakotay’s back.
“So ah what’s for dinner?”