By Carol Sandford


Chapter 10


The muffled exclamations from her fellow crewmates brought Deanna out of the trance like state that she had drifted into. Turning her face from the porthole, Deanna's eyes collided with the man standing in the entrance. Deanna's heart broke and she choked on a sob as she hurriedly rose to go to him. Will Riker stood in the doorway. Apart from a pair of navy silky pajama bottoms, he was naked. His face was streaked with moisture from crying, his eyes large and frightened, and his lips quivered as he fought against the onslaught of more tears. Deanna looked down his body. Her eyes briefly resting on the broad expanse of his chest almost totally covered with a matte of dark body hair that tapered down to his waistband. Her eyes traveled lower to his feet that were also bare. As she looked back up into his face, tears ran unchecked down her own porcelain features, he looked pitifully sad and lost. A wail broke from her throat as Will's arms reached out for her. Deanna instantly stepped into the embrace and hugged him to her. Turning him away from the stares, weeping quietly she whispered for his ears only, "Come on Imzadi, let's take you home."

When they were clear of the lounge, she summoned the transporter room to transport them back to his quarters, along with a request for Beverly Crusher to join them there.

Once she had got Will tucked up into bed, she patiently waited for Beverly's arrival. As she clutched Will's head to her chest she gently stroked his face, her murmured words calming him, and her own shattered emotions down.

Using her access code Beverly entered the bedroom and quietly made her way to Will's side.

"Hello, Will, you fell asleep again before calling me, didn't you?" He hugged Deanna tighter and nodded sheepishly. Smiling gently at him she whispered "Okay, Will, I'm going to give you your hypospray now, alright." He nodded briefly and winced as the cold metal touched his skin.

Beverly stood to leave but as Deanna went to do the same, Will's arms tightened around her once more. She saw the desperation in his eyes as he muttered one word "Stay". Deanna relaxed beside him once more "Okay, Will, I'm not going anywhere, just let me see Beverly out, alright?"

Will reluctantly let her go and the two women quietly left the bedroom area. Before Beverly left her Deanna whispered her thanks. Beverly smiled and squeezed her arm. "Anytime."

Deanna watched her leave, and then with a sigh she made her way back into Will's bedroom. Now bathed in near darkness, Deanna made her way around to the spare side of the bed. She could feel Will's eyes watching her progress. Slipping off her tunic, she slid into the cool sheets, and as soon as she had put her head on the pillow, Will snuggled up close. Hugging him to her, Deanna forced her mind to relax until eventually a combination of her gentle thoughts and the hypospray finally sent Will into a deep dreamless sleep.

  Book index   Previous chapter   Next chapter