By Katie Truman
Synopsis: Rated G. Sort of a sequel to WELCOME. Set during the end of ENDGAME, and fills in B’Elanna and Tom’s thoughts while all the chaos occurs around them. Gives us the first look at the new Paris family.
Disclaimer: this disclaimer has been written in invisible ink!
Tom couldn’t believe it. He couldn’t be there. He wanted to be there. He had to be there for her. For his daughter, and for himself. But orders are orders, especially when they’re from your wife. B’Elanna on the other hand gave the orders, but was still not sure what to do with him gone. They had practiced this together. She knew this was hard on him too and she just had to focus on what had to be done. After stealing one last kiss, she muttered, "Lets get this show on the road." Little did she know where this road would be leading them.
This was one of the rare times that the doctor wished he had been organic. When he witnessed the look of pure serenity on their faces. Tom and B’Elanna were together, eyes locked, and engaged in a family moment to remember. The Doctor was preparing something to help B’Elanna with the pain. As he looked up and saw Tom place his hand on her belly, and kiss her oh so softly, he knew medication was not the answer to her pain. Even so, he wasn’t about to take any chances with a half Klingon in labour.
As Tom walked onto the bridge he could feel himself change like a snake shedding it’s skin. He went from husband and soon to be father, to conn officer, ready for action. As much as he loved being in the pilot’s seat rather than sickbay, this was one exception. He had to get his head in the right place if this was going to work and so many people were relying on him to get them home. Weren’t they already home?
B’Elanna had never felt like this before. "Come on B’Elanna I know you can do it! Push just a little harder!" The doctor was very reassuring, and wasn’t at all rusty considering he hadn’t done this in 7 years. She felt like every time she pushed, she wasn’t just pushing her daughter, she pushing on with her life; A future which held so many possibilities. With everything going on inside of her, she wasn’t really thinking about what was going on around her. She clenched the doctor’s hand and probably would have broken it, if it had been real. "Just one more push! You can do it!" The doctor enthused. " I’m sorry but you’ll have no let go of my hand if you want me to proceed with this." B’Elanna gave him a look of death. "I’m a hologram, not a stress ball!"
"Just a little faster Tom and you can get us out by riding the shockwave!" Captain Janeway shouted as they were coming through the Borg conduit. He was almost there, he could see the end, and he couldn’t believe it.
B’Elanna was in tears. She was so tired, and the end was near. She just had to keep it together for one more push. She felt a pulse throughout the ship and it actually helped her concentration. It was like Tom was trying to tell her something. With all the might, courage, and honour left in her she gave it one last push and she was there. She collapsed on the biobed and now her tears were unstoppable. She closed her eyes and imagined her mother, and felt her presence. She opened her teary eyes for a brief moment and saw her. She was standing beside the doctor and starring at B’Elanna’s daughter. She kissed her forehead, and then calmly turned to B’Elanna and said, "She is Beautiful". Then she was gone. Was that really her mother, or an illusion? It didn’t matter. B’Elanna sat up to look for Miral. She took her in her arms and whispered "Miral" to herself, knowing a sign when she saw one. Now all she wanted was her family to be complete. What was happening on the bridge? Why couldn’t Tom be there with her? With them.
This had to be one of the greatest moments on the bridge. Tom was amazed as he saw the Borg cube blow up around him. He couldn’t wait until he saw the view on the other side. It was like nothing else. Tom thought shock was when B’Elanna told him she was pregnant. If that was shock then there were no words to describe this feeling. Tom couldn’t move. All he could do was sit there and stare forward. Then there he was. Not a thought or dream, not a letter, or a call, but just a regular transmission. Admiral Paris had the same expression on his face that Tom did. Tom looked at the floor. This was definitely going to be awkward, but he wanted their reunion to be a private and meaningful one. He wanted B’Elanna to be there. B’Elanna… Then he heard a cry. It was the most beautiful sound he had ever heard. Life. Life that he had created was calling him. All this was too much to take in. All he could do at that moment in time was just listen in awe. "You better get down there Tom." He couldn’t wait.
He was on his way. They would be together now, and their home was complete. Now that she had had a moment to collect her thoughts, B’Elanna began to wonder. Where were they? If Tom was able to leave the bridge then whatever happened, it’s done. She didn’t even want to think about engineering, but of course she couldn't help it! Did they make it back to the alpha quadrant, or were they still in the Delta quadrant? Or worse! She was beginning to know what the doctor felt like all those years ago; when he couldn’t leave sickbay. She wanted answers. But for now, all she wanted to do was hold her daughter and wait for Tom. She couldn’t wait to introduce him to Miral.
When Tom walked into sickbay he saw his wife sitting up and staring down into her arms. He looked at the doctor, who was in his office, and the doctor just smiled at him. A non-verbal congratulations. Before he went any further, he just watched B’Elanna hold her. They were so beautiful. It was so wonderful to see her and his daughter together. She felt his presence in the room and turned her head. She just gave him a big smile and he noticed the water in her eyes. Well if she was going to cry… wordlessly, he walked over and he sat up on her biobed. She then handed him their child. He had never felt like this before. He looked at B’Elanna and whispered "Miral".
Now they all were crying, and appreciating this moment together. The doctor wanted to give them some privacy, so he left for the bridge, to tell the captain about her newest crewmember.
After a while of holding, counting all her fingers and toes, and just familiarizing themselves with their daughter, B’Elanna put Miral down to sleep and remembered what she had been waiting to ask Tom. It was the question of all questions and she wasn’t sure she wanted to know the answer. She loved it here on Voyager. Voyager was home to her and Tom. It was the only home they ever had. Tom hadn’t said one thing about it, but maybe he assumed she already knew. Tom had gotten up to replicate B’Elanna something to eat she just couldn’t keep the question in any longer. As much as she wanted to keep their world like this forever, she had to move on.
"Tom, what happened?" Tom turned around and suddenly realized that B’Elanna had no clue. He picked up the banana pancakes and walked back to her. He got ready to be sitting for awhile.
He really wasn’t sure how to say it, since he still didn’t believe it himself. "We made it B’Elanna. We’re home."
"Home…" Was all she could say, and all she had to say. Tom knew what she meant. They already were home. Now everything would be different.
She wasn’t sure if this was what she wanted for them, which is funny considering how she would have felt just a few years ago. She would miss everyone so much. She already missed Neelix. She was trying to imagine what it would be like to say goodbye to everyone, not just one person but the whole crew. Saying goodbye to Chakotay, the Captain, and Harry would probably be the hardest. Tom would miss Harry so much. But what was she thinking? It’s quite like they would see each other often. It just wouldn’t be the same. At least she would have Tom. She would have a family.
They were both lost in thoughts until they heard Miral cry for comfort. Tom got up from the bio bed and got Miral from her bassinet, which the doctor had brought into sickbay for them. B’Elanna took a bite of her pancakes.
"I know we talked about this before, but honestly Tom, what are we going to do…" B’Elanna was still in shock.
"Well, we are obviously not going to go back to work anytime soon…" Tom was trying to lighten the mood. " But whatever happens, we’ll be together." That was enough for her. Tom handed Miral to her and placed his hand on her shoulder. It looked as if he was about to say something more, until the captain interrupted them.
"Janeway to the Paris Family." B’Elanna liked the sound of that.
"Here captain." B’Elanna spoke.
"If you are up to it, would you be able to come up to the bridge? We have a lot to discuss, and it just can’t wait." Tom and B’Elanna looked at each other, and at Miral, who was now fast asleep again, and then Tom spoke.
"We’d love to captain. Be there soon."