Star Trek: Defiant

Pilot Episode 5D

Written by Laine Rael

His tears were flowing freely now, and he looked deep into her eyes, intensely. "I will always love you," he said fiercely, and then turned and walked back into his quarters. The door slid shut.

Rael sobbed.

* * *

Two weeks passed, and Rael was back on Bajor, sharing a bed with Rick. That night, Rael dreamed. She dreamed of the time she had found Rick and Chandra, but then the dream changed, blurred. Rick, in bed with hundreds of women, thousands...

She awoke, trembling. Rick was not next to her, but that was not surprising. He often rose before her, and wasn't much comfort from nightmares anyway...he was a sound sleeper, and did not awake unless she woke him.

She missed Jeffrey, missed the Defiant. But her dreams were so vivid, they could not be ignored. She rose the next evening after making sure Rick was asleep and went to his personal desk terminal while he was sleeping. She had guessed the password...LCRTMaya....about a week ago (Rael always had been good with computers) but had not had the courage to snoop around. She had found her courage this evening, however.

She decided to open his personal addressbook first...she was just being silly, she thought, but she had to know...she scrolled through a list of Rick's parents, relatives, family...

Rael was stumped at first. -What if he has a different file, one with a name you might not think to look under?- Coming out of his family file, she looked at the other files. Friends. Colleagues. One, however, had an unusual title. Cressida.

Rael felt cold. Apparently, Rick had thought if she had ever snooped around in here, this was one thing Rael wouldn't understand. But he had definitely underestimated her in this respect. As a hobby, Rael read many old Earth legends, and this one was very old. She barely remembered the story...she thought hard. -Troilus and Cressida,- she thought, and then she realized.

A story of two lovers...betrayed by a woman.

She opened the file...and gasped.

Hundreds of names of women...and pictures. She looked through them, unbelieving, but still knowing...-Maybe he just didn't get around to cleaning this out after Chandra- she thought uneasily. But she looked carefully at the records. He had been in close contact with some of these women recently, she realized. One of the messages was sent just yesterday.

She opened that one, and had the computer present it in written format instead of spoken so as not to wake Rick. She read.

"Dearest Beverly...I have missed you so much. It's difficult being out here doing field experiments on Bajor for the next three months, but I know you will understand..."

She closed it quickly, gasping. She went on to the next most recent one, sent a few days ago.

"My darling Catherine...It's been so long since I beheld your lovely face. My parents wish you well, and they are looking forward to meeting you once my experiments are over next year...I miss you so much..."

She could not go on. She had made the worst mistake of her entire life. She had left the one man who had truly loved her and given up her entire career in Starfleet for someone who could never love nor trust any woman. -Oh God, Jeffrey- Rael thought. The pain was incredible. She stood, stumbling back to the bedroom, eyes blurred by tears. As she reached the doorway, seeing Rick sleeping, a cry of pain started in the back of her throat...she stepped through the doorway...

And into a white room.

Rael didn't notice right away that her setting had changed, and the cry that had started back on Bajor finally came to fruition. She screamed.

Jeffrey heard. He went to the doorway where the sound was coming from, and it opened. Rael, sobbing, looked up. Jeffrey took her in her arms, and she struggled, not realizing what was happening.

"Rael, Rael...look at me."

She could not stop sobbing. She was crying as if her heart would break. Knowing it would take too long to explain, and knowing he had to calm her somehow, he carefully helped her into the room with Commander Hardin, T'Mal and Emeras, and sat down on the floor, bringing her with him.

She finally looked up at him, drawing hitching breaths.

"It was a dream."

She collapsed then over him, still sobbing, fingers digging into his arms as they sat on the floor of the unknown prison...he held her, rocking her, comforting her, as he had always done...

* * *

The captors were confused at the tie between these two... these two of different species, yet bound by a strong tie, to be sure. They were not related by blood, but were bound together by a stronger force than blood. These two would have to be carefully observed...

* * *

Rael had fallen asleep. Jeffrey carefully laid her on the floor before looking at Emeras, T'Mal, John. They seemed stunned by what they had just witnessed. Jeffrey angrily looked up at the ceiling. "What -now-?" he yelled.

No answer was immediately forthcoming.

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