By Carol Sandford


Part 3


The Last Teardrops - Chapter 1


Two weeks later ~~~~~~~~~~~~ "Mother, I want you to know that I have applied for, and been accepted into Starfleet Academy". Deanna waited with bated breath for her mother to react, to throw something, to howl with rage or indignance. The response she received however, was not quite what she expected.

"I know, dear. You seem to forget on occasion that nothing you say or do goes without my knowledge...for the most part." Lwaxana looked up at her daughter and carefully put down the book that she had been reading.

Lwaxana Troi had waited four days for Deanna to pluck up the courage to tell her to her face, and now that the moment had come. She had already been given time to 'react', in private, and respond to the knowledge that her child was leaving to chase a lost cause. Aman. That Starfleet lieutenant, Will Riker.

Deanna balked as she read her mothers vehement thoughts. "Mother! Will is not a lost cause. I love him with every ounce of my heart and soul, and I will be with him again, soon. But in the meantime, I intend to go to the academy on Earth, and you've known for a long time that those were my intentions, even before Will came into my life. I just never had the courage or reason to disagree with you before now. And I think it still bothers you that I've finally found it, no matter what you say."

Lwaxana pouted her lips as she sulked. "But Deanna! Darling! Earth!! What am I going to do without you?"

Deanna recognised the manipulative tone and smiled indulgently at her. "Oh, I'm sure you'll find plenty to do, and I'm sure you could even come to Earth with me for a while, if you wanted. Maybe we could find an apartment together..."

Getting carried away with her plans, Deanna visibly jumped as her mother's thoughts slammed through her head. STOP!

Feigning a shocked look, Deanna asked her, despite already knowing what she was going to say. "Mother, what's wrong? I thought that would be want you wanted."

Deanna stopped as Lwaxana held up her hand to stop the tirade. "You know very well that I cannot leave Betazed. I have a duty to uphold. I have certain obligations, responsibilities. You of all people should know how important my role here is, little one"

Deanna hid the tiny smile that tried to break across her elfin face. "Yes, I know mother, but they are your obligations, not mine. I believe that my future...My destiny, lies out there."

Lwaxana watched as her daughter wandered over to the window to stare out at the crystal blue skies, already lost in her thoughts. The Troi matriarch was solemn as she asked her daughter a question to which she already knew the answer.

"With him?"

Deanna sighed, and folding her arms she turned back to face her mother once more as she thought about her answer. She desperately missed Will. Even more so upon finding out that she was not pregnant. The emptiness seemed ten fold now that she had nothing to hold on to, nothing except his love and the eventual reunion which she believed would happen, with every fibre of her being, was not so far away.

"One day soon, yes, but until then, I intend to continue with my plans, and they are Starfleet."

Long moments passed as the two women digested the changes that were about to happen, in both of their lives. Resignedly, Lwaxana asked her, "When do you leave?"

Deanna moved to sit beside her mother, taking the older woman's hands within her own, she whispered, "Two weeks. There is a small transport ship due in. I'm scheduled to be on it at, 0900 hours, Saturday morning"

Lwaxana gave her a watery smile. There was no stopping Deanna now, her mind was made up. She was just going to have to grin and bare it. "Well, darling, if that's what you truly want."

The younger Troi stood, her hand still clasping her mothers. She offered her a tentative smile, "It is, mother."

Deanna turned to leave the room but slowed to a stop at the doorway as Lwaxana's parting thought reached her.

There will be plenty of time for babies when you're older, little one.

Deanna sighed deeply and squared her shoulders before carrying on out of the door.


Deanna's first communique came from Will came two days later. Unfortunately, she had not been there to receive it. When she arrived home from the university, she was dismayed to find the message left behind, unforwarded. With a scowl in her mother's direction, she settled herself down to devour his long awaited words.

What she was not prepared for, however, was the impact of Will's face when he appeared on the screen before her. She felt a lump rise in her throat before he had even spoken. His image became blurred as her eyes filled with tears which ran unchecked down her cheeks.

Deanna pressed the pause button to collect herself before carrying on with the message, she wanted to hear and savour every single word that fell from his lips. Finally composing herself, she gave a healthy sniff and pressed 'play' once more, gazing longingly at the bright blue, mischievous eyes which smiled out at her.

BR> I miss you Imzadi. It's driving me insane not being with you, but I promise you, as soon as I'm back, I'm coming for you, be ready. I love you, Deanna, take care."

Will's hand touched the screen at the same time as hers touched it, as if by some invisible force the contact broke down the thousands of miles between them, their eyes locked, their souls joined for a fraction of a second, and then he was gone.

Deanna stared at the blank screen for ever before she whispered tearfully, "Oh Imzadi, come back."

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