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Decent Proposal

Episode Synopsis
Janeway gets a surprise visit from her son, as well as ex-fiance Mark. Chakotay meanwhile has some plans of his own.

10th, 14th & 19th May 2004

Episode Based In
March 2380


Voyager, the Bridge:
Kathryn walked in sighing, Chakotay watched her. "What's wrong?"

"I have a visitor for the weekend break, but that's not it," Kathryn replied, she sat down in her chair.

Chakotay frowned, "what is it?"

"Admiral Picard is impressed with how well Lena commanded the Enterprise. He wants to train her considering the circumstances we're in," Kathryn replied.

"But she didn't always follow Starfleet procedure, he's the last person I expected to be impressed," Chakotay said.

"Well I think it's because she's so young, he believes she has potential and the fleet is short on good commanders," Kathryn said. "He wants her to take control of the Enterprise during the weekend orbiting break. He wants to see how she does on a normal day."

"Hmm, that'll be interesting to say the least," Chakotay said. "So, who's your visitor?"

Kathryn glanced at him, "James."

"That's interesting too," Chakotay commented.

Kathryn was about to respond but Andrea interrupted her by rushing into the room. "Guess what."

"Uh what?" Chakotay said.

"Mark is visiting me for the weekend," Andrea replied.

"Interesting," Chakotay said.

"Would you stop saying that word," Kathryn grumbled.

"Sorry," Chakotay said.

"What are you all doing over the weekend?" Andrea asked.

"Nothing," Emma muttered.

"Dad's off duty so we're going to the holodeck," Bryan replied.

"I'm going to visit my dad, I'm not sticking around here," Jodie replied.

Kathryn sighed, "well there's a lot of that going around."

"Kathryn, it's good right. You fell out and he's the one that wants to make up," Chakotay said.

"What if he just wants to kill me?" Kathryn muttered.

"God, it takes a whole weekend to do that?" Emma said in disbelief.

Chakotay ignored her, "now I see why he's so mad at you."

"What does that mean?" Kathryn snapped.

"Well you were telling me that he felt awful about treating you so badly. All you seem to do is remind everyone and especially him what he did," Chakotay said.

"I guess you're right," Kathryn sighed.

"I promise you, he's visiting to make up," Chakotay said.

Andrea groaned, "shame, I liked him better when he hated you." Kathryn glared at her.

"You'll still like him. He's always sarcastic and making fun of people," Chakotay groaned. "To be honest, you'll love him. What do you need Mark for?"

Kathryn glared at him instead, "I'm leaving you."

"I was just joking," Chakotay said quietly, looking ashamed.

"Hey it's ok, I don't even want to meet him. He'll most likely look like her and that's not pretty," Andrea said. Kathryn moved her glare back over to her.

"Well he inherited the glare, at least," Chakotay smiled. Kathryn turned her head again.

"Actually now that you mention it, he does look like her. He has got blonde hair and is obviously more guyish looking, so the hair colour is the only difference," Bryan blurted out.

"Run Bryan run for you life!" Emma exclaimed.

Kathryn was now very red in the cheeks, "are you trying to say that I look a little guyish."

"It's the glare that makes you look a little guyish. It obviously works better with James as he's a guy and you're not supposed to be," Bryan stuttered. "I'm going to go." He quickly beamed out.

"Can't Tom and B'Elanna have kids that are not like their dad?" Kathryn grumbled.

"It's ok, he's wrong," Chakotay whispered to her. She calmed down and smiled.

"Ugh," Andrea groaned. "I just want to know if he's easy on the eyes. I prefer talking to people's faces, not their feet or something."

"Well let's just say if Kevin had James' looks, he'd score more often," Jodie commented.

Kathryn turned pale, "oh dear god, have I ever mentioned how much I adore James the way he is." Chakotay smiled.

"Well if he's easy on the eyes then I don't mind meeting him sometime," Andrea said.

"Easy on the eyes? My god woman, if my sister hadn't of gotten him I would have tried to get him myself," Jodie said.

Andrea frowned, "that's not right, are you sure Janeway is his mother?"

Kathryn's eyes widened, "get out of my bridge!" Everyone cowered.

Indiana, Janeway's family home:
Duncan ran into the living room, James just walked in after him.

"Good day?" Jessie asked from the sofa.

"Yeah I smacked an annoying kid in my class," Duncan replied, grinning.

"That's why we're late home," James muttered.

"I told you, you should have hit the teacher. She's always a bitch," Duncan said as he climbed onto the sofa.

"No, your mother is the one who hits the teachers," James commented.

Jessie tried to look innocent, "hey I was a goody two shoes for years. I showed good restraint considering."

"Really? Throwing chairs and stabbing people is good restraint?" James said.

"You can talk mister. In one day you managed to twist a little kids arm, smashed his brothers face, gave two of his friends a concussion, and managed to knock a huge guy down and break his nose," Jessie said.

Duncan grinned, "cool."

"It was all self defence, except for the little kid," James said. "Anyway yours is worse, who out of us got expelled?"

"Probably dad," Duncan replied.

"No," James smiled.

Duncan glanced at his mother in shock. She just pouted, "it was just one fight, that wasn't fair. You used to beat people up all the time, I don't get it."

"Well I never stabbed anyone," James said.

"Well you would have got expelled too if you didn't move to Manchester," Jessie muttered, folding her arms.

"Yeah true," James said.

Duncan climbed back off the sofa, he sat down cross legged on the floor. "What the hell is this crap?" he asked, pointing at the TV.

"I don't know, your sister was watching it," Jessie sighed.

"Ugh typical," Duncan grumbled. He played with the remote, a Pokémon episode came on the screen.

"Well I haven't seen that in a while," James commented.

Jessie shrugged, "that's cos it's not as good." She looked up at him, "I've been thinking, maybe we can go somewhere for the weekend. Sasha and I have been stuck in the house for ages, well she went out in the garden a few times."

Duncan glanced away from the TV, "a weekend, how about a whole week?"

"Nice try," Jessie muttered. Duncan pouted, he turned back to the TV.

"Maybe next weekend," James said.

"Um I'd like to get out of the house a little sooner than that," Jessie said.

"Well you three can go out, I can't this weekend, remember?" James said.

"No I don't," Jessie said.

"I have to go to Voyager this weekend," James said.

"Oh right. Can't you go next weekend?" Jessie asked.

"I would but they're off on a mission on the Wednesday," James replied. "I told you, you can come with me, if you want."

"I'm not that desperate to leave the house," Jessie grumbled.

"Jessie, you've had all week to tell me this. Why now?" James questioned.

"All week? The most I've seen you for is an hour," Jessie muttered.

"That's long enough for you to tell me several times," James said.

Jessie rolled her eyes, "oh that's funny."

"Look you don't have to stick around house anyway, you can go out whenever," James said.

Jessie sighed as she looked down at herself, "hmm, not really."

"Ok I don't get it. You don't want to be seen in public just like you were with Sasha, but you still want to go away for the weekend," James muttered.

Jessie looked back up at him, "I dunno, I could probably live with all the staring if I was out with you and the kids. You see if I'm on my own pregnant with two kids, I look a bit of a whore."

"Ok fine, just come to Voyager with me," James said.

Jessie just sighed, "we spent years trying to get off that thing."

"Well I'm still going. You told me I should be the one to try and make up with my mother. You can't really have it both ways," James said.

"Don't take that tone with me. It's not my fault you're always working and not here," Jessie grumbled.

"Fine if you feel that way we can live somewhere else," James said.

"Where exactly, and why?" Jessie asked.

"If we move to England I'll be around more often. Trouble is there's only one place we can go there," James replied.

Jessie's eyes widened, "ohno, you don't mean our foster home?"

"Well it's that, stay here or my old place in the middle of vampire central," James replied.

"Ok end of conversation," Jessie muttered.

"I don't get it. I have only been working for a week and a half and we're already fighting," James said.

"Well it's bound to continue if you suggest our foster home again," Jessie said.

"And why's that?" James asked.

"Well Sarah won't let me move in, but that's not really the point. I don't want to see her again after what happened," Jessie replied.

"Then I don't really know what to do. We've got to live with this for three months, I'm only going away for one weekend," James said.

"Maybe you could change your plans and stay home this weekend," Jessie said, smiling sweetly.

"We were fighting Jess, but I'm not complaining," James muttered.

"Well then?" Jessie said.

"I told you, I can't do this another time," James sighed. "I suppose I could. Tell you what, I'll come back on Sunday morning. We can go out then."

Jessie smiled, "that'll do fine."

The Enterprise, the next day:
"This is a stupid idea. Admiral Paris must have gone senile or something," Angela muttered.

Tom glanced over at her from his chair, "I've been thinking that for a while."

"Why Paris? I thought the Lena thing was Picard's idea," Faye said.

"Forget him, I'm going senile," Angela groaned.

"Well it's obviously a good time to get a younger captain," Faye commented.

"Oh witty," Angela muttered sarcastically.

The turbolift doors opened, Lena and Picard stepped through them.

"I really don't get this," Lena said.

Picard sighed, "it's very simple. There are three missions for the Enterprise, you have to choose the one that is most important. The other two are secondary, but don't be fooled, one mission may seem important but it may just break a lot of rules."

"Um ok," Lena muttered.

"If you choose the right one you pass, and of course you can command the ship on the correct mission. If you fail, Angela will take your command off you," Picard said.

"What's the missions?" Lena asked.

"You will be told soon enough. Just settle in for now," Picard replied. He nodded at Angela before going back into the turbolift.

"Well Lena, the Enterprise is yours again for now," Angela said. She glanced over at Tom.

"That's my cue to head to Voyager, have a good weekend guys," Tom grinned. He headed over to the other turbolift.

Lena sighed, "ok Angela, get me up to date."

Chakotay strolled down the corridor, he almost bumped into Kathryn as she came from around the corner. "Kathryn, wrong way."

"Oh oops," Kathryn giggled. She turned around, pointing a finger down the corridor, "that way?"

Chakotay took her arm to guide her down the corridor, "how much this time?"

"I dunno, I just got very nervous and drank a lot. I'll be ok in a minute," Kathryn replied.

"I hope so, not many people got used to your coffee obsession and think it's cute now," Chakotay muttered.

"Not many, who does?" Kathryn asked.

"Just me I think," Chakotay replied as they entered the transporter room. A few others were waiting around.

"We're ready for the first transport Captain," Harold said.

"Ok, do it," Kathryn ordered.

Harold nodded, he keyed in a few commands. A group of people rematerialised on the pad. All but one of them rushed over to the people who were waiting.

Kathryn and Chakotay walked closer to the pad, James stepped off it once they reached it. "Welcome back to Voyager," Chakotay said.

"Thanks," James said. "Um, change of plans, I have to leave tomorrow morning."

Kathryn nodded, "ok."

Chakotay sighed, "um the quarters have been given a redesign recently."

James and Kathryn glanced at him. "Great," he said with his eyebrow raised.

"Chakotay," Kathryn said in a warning voice.

"What, you asked me to get a conversation going if it got awkward," Chakotay said.

"Right, this is a good start," James said.

Kathryn looked more nervous that earlier, "just so I can stop being paranoid, start of what?"

"I'm not sure now," James muttered in response.

"Ok ok, let's start again," Kathryn said quickly. Another group rematerialised on the pad, Kathryn's eyes widened as a result. She quickly started hugging James.

"What are you doing?" he asked uncomfortably.

"Shh, just wait until he's gone," Kathryn whispered.

Mark stepped off the pad nearby, he looked around the room. "Kathryn?"

Kathryn's eyes widened, "shh, I'm not here." James looked over at Chakotay like he wanted help, he just shrugged.

Mark turned to them, "Kathryn? I can hear you, you know."

"Do you know him?" James asked.

Kathryn pulled away, "yes I do." Uneasily she turned to face Mark. "Chakotay, James, this is Mark."

"Thee Mark?" Chakotay questioned.

"Yes," Kathryn sighed in response.

"Isn't he a little young for you?" Mark said while glancing in James' direction.

"Eeew, no no," he muttered turning to glare at Kathryn. "Another person you haven't told?"

"I haven't had a chance," Kathryn replied nervously.

"I think now's a good chance," Chakotay said quietly.

"Right. Mark," Kathryn said looking in Chakotay's direction. "This is Chakotay, my ex first officer and close friend."

"And ex husband," James added on.

"Shh," Kathryn whispered.

"What, it's not as bad as my story," James said.

Mark frowned, "I see."

"And this is James, he's um... my um," Kathryn stuttered. She cleared her throat, "my son."

James rolled his eyes as he glanced at Chakotay, he looked really uncomfortable.

"Your what?" Mark asked.

"She's my mum ok," James muttered.

"Shhh," Kathryn whispered nervously.

Mark stared at her with wide eyes, "is this a joke?"

"Well don't ask me, I didn't say it," Kathryn stuttered in response.

"Well I see this was a waste of time," James muttered. He headed over to Harold, "hey can you transport me back."

"No wait, I'm sorry," Kathryn quickly said. She gently took ahold of his arm, "ok Mark, it's not a joke."

"But... oh, does he look older than he is like that Yasmin girl too?" Mark asked.

"Actually he looks younger than he is," Kathryn said quietly.

"You're trying to tell me you had a son through our entire relationship?" Mark questioned.

"Er yeah, but it's not as bad as it sounds," Kathryn replied.

Andrea walked into the room, she rushed over to Mark. "Hi Marky, sorry I'm late." They both hugged each other.

"It's alright, I was just catching up with Kathryn," Mark said.

"Did she tell you about the two other kids she has, I mean my god," Andrea asked.

"Two, I only knew of one other one," Mark muttered.

Kathryn looked uneasy as James glanced at her again, "uh he only met Yasmin. I didn't get a chance before to mention you and Lena."

"It's not as bad as it sounds, huh Kath?" Mark said.

"Well no, Lena's from an alternate reality," Kathryn stuttered.

Mark glanced at James, "and him?"

"Oh for crying out loud. She had a drunken one night stand, got pregnant, let my dad take care of me..." James snapped.

"James," Kathryn stuttered.

Andrea glanced at Kathryn, "so this is the son you mentioned Janeway? Did you lie to him about you and him being related?"

"I wasn't lying," Kathryn muttered.

"Well he seems like an adopted kid to me," Andrea commented.

Kathryn glared in her direction, "oh he's mine, and I'll prove it."

"Ok but he's too easy on the eyes to be a Janeway," Andrea said.

Mark glanced at her, "I am right here, please stop."

"Wow, I actually saw an expression on his face. That's a rare thing," James commented.

"What does that mean exactly?" Mark asked.

"Well ever since she came in you've acted like a wooden actor. Do you not actually like her or something?" James replied.

"Oh I was wrong, he's a Janeway alright," Andrea grumbled. "Come on Marky." She dragged Mark away by the arm.

Kathryn sighed, "that was not necessary."

"What wasn't?" James asked.

"Oh I thought you were defending me. Never mind, let's go," Kathryn replied. She headed out of the room. James and Chakotay followed her.

Meanwhile, the Enterprise Mess Hall:
"Isn't it great?" Craig asked.

Zare groaned as she fiddled with her fork, "yes, fantastic."

"I thought you liked Lena," Craig said.

"I do and I'm happy for her but this has got to stop," Zare muttered.

"What has?" Craig asked.

"You always talking about Lena. You're obsessed with her and it's driving me crazy," Zare replied.

Craig stared at her, "what do you mean?"

"Well you're always talking about her," Zare replied.

"Sorry, I didn't realise," Craig muttered. "She was my first love you know."

"Well you screwed that up twice, don't blame it on me," Zare said.

"I've never blamed you," Craig said.

"It feels that way everytime you go on and on about her," Zare grumbled.

"I'm sorry, I'll try not to talk about her as much," Craig said.

Zare sighed, "I'm curious though, do you even like me at all?"

"Oh please, of course I do," Craig replied.

"But you'll always like her more than me," Zare said.

"Zare, I..." Craig stuttered.

"Yeah I thought so," Zare sighed.

"Well to be honest with you, I was in love with her but..." Craig said.

"You're still in love with her, why else are you with me? You obviously just wanted to be with me to get her jealous or something," Zare said.

Craig shook his head, "that's not true."

Zare climbed out of her chair, "what happened to being honest with me."

"I am in a way. I really do like you," Craig said.

"I probably remind you of her in some way," Zare muttered. "Craig at first I couldn't stand you but quickly I realised you're a good guy, but this Lena obsession is going to end all of your relationships with other girls."

"Other girls? But Zare..." Craig stuttered.

"I'm sorry Craig," Zare sighed. She walked away.

Voyager, the Mess Hall:
Kathryn looked up from her own tray, she put down her fork so she could fold her arms. "So, what's your job like?"

"Crap, nobody there likes me," James replied without taking his eyes off his tray.

"Ok, do you know why?" Kathryn asked.

James looked up at her, "I want to know something."

"Um, what?" Kathryn said.

"Do you actually want me here?" James asked.

"Yes, of course I do," Kathryn replied.

"Ok, do you get why I was mad at you?" James questioned.

"What are you doing?" Kathryn muttered.

"Talking about what happened. That's why I'm here," James replied.

"Right, it's just you're doing it like an interrogation," Kathryn said.

"Sorry," James said. "Well?"

"Yes I get it, but you've got to understand my position. I feel that everytime you're around me you'd rather be elsewhere. Also you can't blame me for being slightly paranoid, considering the way you used to treat me," Kathryn said.

"I kinda do. So we understand each other, that's a start I guess," James said.

Kathryn sat up slightly, "yes it is."

"You were wrong about something though," James said.

"I was?" Kathryn muttered.

"Well I wouldn't be here if I didn't want to be around you at all," James replied. "I just don't get what's changed, and what I want from this."

Kathryn smiled, "maybe you feel like you're missing a parental figure."

"No way, I am a bit old for that and I have had quite a few parents. Obviously there's you, dad, Susy, her husband John and of course my foster mum," James said.

"I still like to curl up in front of a fire with my mother sometimes, you know just to talk with her or be around her," Kathryn said. "You did have several parental figures, all different but your real father died when you were young and I wasn't around while you grew up. Besides I'm the only parental figure left, aren't I?"

"Well my foster mum's still alive, but I haven't seen her in over sixteen years," James replied.

Kathryn sighed as she leaned on the table, "I don't think you just want to work things out for the hell of it. There's only one possible reason."

"But it's not like I'm alone or anything," James muttered.

Kathryn laughed slightly, "that's not my point. Didn't you go to any of your parents just because you needed comfort, guidance, or someone to talk to?"

James sighed, "let me see, my dad was never comforting and probably talking about your feelings is unmanly in his view. My foster mother was anti-guys, she was only close to the girls. Susy and I never really got on. I guess I talked with John a few times about stuff, but that's it."

"That's the problem. A lot of people will tell you that you're lucky to have had so many parents, some children don't even have two, or even one to themselves. I think in your case you had mostly all the wrong kind," Kathryn said.

"You've sort of lost me," James said.

"Ok you've not really had a proper son and parent relationship with any of the ones you mentioned. All I'm saying is maybe a part of you actually wants that relationship, and I'm the only one you haven't tried to have one with," Kathryn said. "You have tried with the others right?"

"No, I didn't try with Susy and dad," James replied.

"Well they both died before you changed your mind about them or whatever. Obviously a part of you doesn't want to lose that opportunity again," Kathryn said.

James raised his eyebrow, "did you try and become a counsellor or psychiatrist before trying to be a Captain?"

Kathryn grinned, "no, but I know everyone needs at least one parent to be close with. I don't think you and I are going to stop arguing altogether but it would be nice if we could be civilised most of the time. I think there's a lot we still need to know about each other, maybe once we know we'll stop feeling uncomfortable around one another."

"I guess," James said.

"I think it'll be quicker for me, I always knew who you were but you remained ignorant for most of your life. I was your captain who was obsessed with your safety and personal life, then suddenly I was your mother who was still just as obsessed," Kathryn said.

James tried to keep a straight face, "yeah a little too obsessed with my personal life mostly."

"Yeah but you see what I mean. I think that was always a problem," Kathryn said.

"I know, when I look back on it I can't believe I was so stupid not to have figured it out," James commented.

Kathryn sighed, "that's not what I meant. I meant that one of the reasons why we're uncomfortable around one another, is because you thought of me as a captain for a long time."

"I know, I got that," James said.

Kathryn sighed, "good. I'll tell you what, why don't we go to my Ready Room for a coffee, or two and just chat."

"But we've been doing that here, except with less coffee," James said.

"Well I don't think we need to talk about this anymore. I mean just generally chat, we've got about eighteen years to catch up on, remember?" Kathryn said.

"Oh god," James groaned, putting his hand over his face.

"What?" Kathryn questioned.

"I hope I'm just catching up on your life before Voyager," James replied.

"Why's that?" Kathryn questioned.

"Because I only have a day to go through all the crap and stuff, that's not possible," James replied.

"Hmm well probably the 'crap' will make me depressed, maybe you can leave it out," Kathryn said.

"Oh good, then I'm in," James said.

Kathryn smiled, "great, after finishing up here we'll head to the Ready Room. Hopefully we won't run into Andrea and her wooden husband along the way."

"Yeah, was he like that when you were dating him?" James asked.

"Actually no. I didn't really notice anything between him and Andrea, maybe it was just wishful thinking," Kathryn replied.

James pulled a face, "you still like that old man?"

Kathryn bit her lip, "he's not old, he just didn't age well."

"Right," James muttered.

"James he's really a nice guy, I used to love him but I don't anymore," Kathryn said.

"Because of Chakotay or the fact that he moved on after four years?" James questioned.

"A little of both," Kathryn replied.

"When the rumours started going around about Mark marrying someone else, I thought that it was just disgusting. I couldn't just move on that easily, then again I doubt I'd move on at all," James said. He shrugged with a smile on his face, "I'd probably just go on a killing spree or something."

Kathryn rolled her eyes, "oh dear, as long as I'm not apart of the spree."

"No not this time," James said.

Kathryn shook her head, "good. Now don't feel badly for Mark, I wasn't any better than him. I moved on with Chakotay in the second year, on and off mind you. He thought I was dead, I thought I'd never see him again."

"If I were him or whatever, I still wouldn't have done the same thing," James said.

"Don't give me that, you had what a two month 'break' with Jessie a while ago, that wasn't long enough to experience that kind of thing. If she'd been gone years then you probably would have found someone else," Kathryn said.

"No I wouldn't," James muttered, pouting slightly. "I don't like you."

Kathryn reached over and brought his coffee cup over to her. "I'm cutting you off."

"Well I wouldn't ok, taking coffee away from me doesn't change that," James said.

"James, you'll never understand what it's like. Well I'm hoping you won't anyway. Just believe me when I say we were both wrong but right at the same time, so let's drop the matter," Kathryn said.

"Whatever, but he still seems rather wooden to me," James muttered.

The Enterprise:
Angela sat down in Tom's chair, "don't worry about it, I had to do the same test. They're very tricky so you've got to make sure you take your time."

Lena walked over to her, "but what if I'm still thinking about it when the first mission is due to start?"

"Then you hope it was the wrong one," Angela replied.

"Great advice," Lena muttered.

"So every Captain has to do this test?" Noah asked as he turned his chair around.

"I don't think so. I was told that I had to do it since I was still just a Commander," Angela replied.

"Makes sense, I think," Noah commented.

Lena sighed, "I really want to get this over with. When does it start?"

"When Picard contacts you with the mission information," Angela replied.

Craig stepped off the turbolift, he looked shocked when he saw Lena. "Uh Lena, I didn't know you were visiting."

Lena turned to face his direction, "I'm being tested."

"For what?" Craig asked.

"Command ability," Lena replied as she turned around.

"I think she'll pass, she's a strong leader," Noah said.

"You're just sucking up cos I can beat you up, aren't you?" Lena said, raising her eyebrow.

"No, you were different but good," Noah said.

Craig sighed, "Lena, can I talk to you privately, or do you not have time?"

"I'm monitoring the communications. I'll send the information to you if it comes during conversation," Angela said.

"Ok thanks," Lena said. She headed for the conference room, "let's make it quick ok."

Craig followed her, "um right."

Lena sat down on the table, "okay, what's up?"

Craig glanced back to watch the doors close, he looked back at her. "I just wanted you to know that Zare and I broke up."

"Oh, sorry," Lena said carefully. She leaned on the table using her right hand. "Why?"

"That's what I wanted to talk to you about," Craig said uneasily.

"Before you ask, I didn't say anything to her. Oh I didn't do anything accidentally, did I?" Lena questioned.

"Depends how you look at it," Craig replied.

"Craig I haven't got time, just tell me," Lena said.

Craig sighed, "ok. I'm stating the obvious here but I am... I'm still in love with you."

Lena's face dropped, "oh."

"Zare knows that and she obviously thought that being with me was a waste. I did really like her but more in a friend way, get what I mean?" Craig said.

Lena folded her arms, "ok ok I get it. Why did you go out with her in the first place?"

"Because I liked her," Craig replied. He headed over to the wall panel, "plus she started being friendly. We talked and talked, she asked me out so I said yes."

"Ah, that's how it happened," Lena muttered.

"Yeah but like you said one time, it was very sudden. I was in a way just trying to get over you," Craig said.

"Listen Craig, I hope you're not going where I think you are with this. We split up twice because you couldn't trust me," Lena said.

"I know, I know I'm an idiot," Craig said. He walked closer to her, and took a hold of her hand. "I do love you, I don't think that'll change."

Lena pulled her hand away, "Craig no, I'm sorry but I don't want to go through that again."

"It's Daniel isn't it?" Craig muttered.

Lena sighed, "I went out with him twice, he's more of a friend than..."

"Then what's the problem?" Craig asked.

"Well you keep interrupting me for one thing," Lena snapped.

"Sorry," Craig muttered.

"Ok the thing is, I'm not the dating type, I don't feel the same way you do and you'll probably get jealous again," Lena said.

"I'm not a dating type really either, and I promise I won't get over jealous again," Craig said.

Lena frowned, "I think you're missing the main problem there."

Craig sighed, "I heard that one, but you were the first girl who ever gave me a chance. If you don't love me that's fine, but that only really affects me doesn't it? I don't care about that, I just want to be with you."

"Craig I..." Lena stuttered.

In: "Turnbull to Conference Room, I'm sending the instructions to the wall panel."

Lena tapped her commbadge, "thanks Angela. Lena out."

"Before we split up I wanted to ask you something, but I didn't get around to it because of the split obviously. But I want to ask you now," Craig said.

"Ok but afterwards I have to work," Lena said.

Craig took a hold of her left hand again, he knelt down on one knee. "Lena, will you marry me?"

Lena's eyes widened, "wha... what?"

The wall panel started beeping madly, Craig tried to ignore it. "Well?"

"Uh I dunno, I'll think about it," Lena stuttered, pulling her hand away from him again. She quickly climbed off the table and rushed over to the wall panel. "I need to work now."

Craig stood back up, "right, see you later." He walked out.

Lena almost sighed in relief, she leaned on wall.

Later, Voyager, Janeway's Ready Room:
James and Kathryn were sitting on the sofa, both with coffee cups in their hands. Kathryn was busy telling a story. "And she just poured a lot of water over me, cold water that is."

"What, why?" James questioned, raising both eyebrows.

Kathryn chuckled, "she was so sick of me sulking around in my bed all the time. It worked, let me tell you."

"Someone should have done that to me several times," James said.

Kathryn shook her head, "no no, I wouldn't recommend it." The door chimed, "come in."

Chakotay strolled into the room, "oh I'm sorry, didn't realise I was interrupting something."

"You weren't, I just finished the story with Phoebe's ingenious method of getting me out of bed," Kathryn said.

Chakotay smiled, "well I must say, it scared the hell out of me."

"Well not me, I told her worse," James said.

Kathryn rolled her eyes, "he's mostly lying." James stared blankly at her. "Oh come on, I told you to leave out the 'crap' you mentioned and you decided to mention that your dad tried to drown you in the bath twice."

"I thought it would be a funny story for you," James said.

Kathryn's eyes widened in horror, "oh god no. That guy is a total psychopath, in a way I'm so glad he's dead."

Chakotay walked over to them, he sat down next to Kathryn. "That explains why you never learned to swim, ey James."

James groaned, "I didn't really need to learn."

Kathryn shook her head, "did you come for a reason Chakotay, or are you just visiting?"

"Actually I wanted to talk to you," Chakotay replied.

"Oh right," Kathryn said, smiling.

Chakotay glanced over at James, "alone."

"That's fine, I want to check on Jess and the kids sometime soon anyway," James said.

Kathryn glanced back at him, "ok, I'll come by later, if that's ok."

James stood up, "yeah sure."

"But I don't want to hear anymore Peter Taylor stories, unless they exclude violence and stuff like that," Kathryn said.

"No Peter Taylor stories, okay," James said as he headed for the door.

"Ok even that just worried me," Kathryn muttered.

"Well I had to get the rest of my evil from somewhere," James commented. He walked out.

Kathryn turned back to Chakotay, "he's still too god damn cheeky, never mind."

Chakotay laughed, "that'll never change. I take it you two are getting on fine."

"It took a while but we got there. I've learned more about him in the past hour than I did during the last few years," Kathryn said.

"That's great," Chakotay smiled.

"Ok enough about him, what do you want to talk about?" Kathryn asked.

Meanwhile, the Enterprise bridge:
Angela glanced at the Conference Room doors as they opened, Lena walked through them. "Come to a decision?"

"Not fully. I'm not allowed to get crew opinion right, sometime that's a good command trait," Lena replied.

Angela shook her head, "I don't think you're allowed, you just tell us what to do."

Lena sighed, "ok." She walked over to stand nearby Noah, "Noah, set a course for Deep Space Eight."

"Aye aye," Noah said.

Angela sat down in her chair, "well good luck Lena."

"Yeah thanks," Lena muttered.

Faye looked puzzled, "um Captain Lena."

"What is it?" Lena asked.

"We're being hailed," Faye replied.

Lena glanced over at Angela. "Sorry Triah's off sick."

"Oh right, who is it Faye?" Lena questioned as she headed over to Tactical.

"Starfleet command," Faye replied.

Angela sighed, "here it is."

"What already?" Lena said.

"Yep, as soon as you set the destination they call you," Angela said.

Lena turned towards the viewscreen, "I've got a bad feeling about this, on screen."

"Yes sir," Faye said.

Picard appeared on the viewscreen. "I'm sorry Lena, but that was the wrong mission. Noah set a course back to Earth, Angela you may resume command."

Lena closed her eyes, "oh god." Everyone glanced at her, looking worried.

"If it makes you feel any better, that one you chose was acceptable, just another one was more important," Picard said.

Lena groaned, "but this one left earlier, how come it's wrong?"

"Because the mission date for the one you should have chose was tomorrow, the mission you chose would have kept you away for three days," Picard replied.

"I didn't think of that," Lena muttered.

Picard tried to smile reassuringly, "we'll be happy to retest you but that won't be for a while. Do some research, talk to people, and whenever you're ready let us know. Picard out."

"Sorry Lena," Angela sighed.

"Thanks but I deserved to fail," Lena said. She headed for the turbolift.

"No you didn't, Picard won't let you retest in future if you did," Angela said.

Lena stepped into the turbolift, "you don't get it, I ain't going to explain it to you though." The doors closed.

"Well I must say, that was the quickest and most brutal test ever," Faye commented.

Noah nodded, "tell me about it."

Voyager, guest quarters:
James walked towards the door, it chimed again. "For god's sake I'm coming," he grumbled. He pressed the button next to the door, it opened to reveal Mark. "What do you want tree man?"

"I want to talk to you about your mother," Mark said. "And don't call me that again."

"Well I don't want to talk about her with you," James said.

Mark walked into the room shaking his head, "I'm having trouble getting all of this. Why did she hide at least one kid from me? How old are you anyway?"

"Thirty one in July," James replied.

"Oh god," Mark groaned, he collapsed on the sofa.

James groaned himself, "you're not sticking around long are you?"

"Well I must say you lack your mothers charm," Mark muttered.

"A few people would disagree, I just don't like you," James said.

"You just met me, more or less," Mark commented.

"Yeah but your fiancee is missing for four years, not even that and you go off to get yourself the first girl you can find," James said.

Mark raised his eyebrow, "like that was ever your business."

"In a way it is," James said.

Mark shook his head, "well she wasn't exactly faithful herself. This Chakotay guy, when did she marry him?"

"Four years ago, I think," James replied. "They were drunk at the time."

"Oh," Mark frowned. "She makes a lot of mistakes while drunk, doesn't she?"

"You're lucky that I chose not to take that personally," James muttered.

"Oh I am, am I?" Mark said. "It wasn't personal so don't worry about it."

"I won't, but I still stand by my not liking you comment," James said.

"I really don't care," Mark groaned. "Why did she hide you from me?"

"Probably cos I was being raised by other people. What would be the point?" James replied.

Mark smiled, "tell me, have you been in a relationship, ever?"

"Yeah I'm in one now that's probably longer than any of yours," James replied.

"Well I take it your girlfriend or ex girlfriend hasn't told you a huge secret all out of the blue," Mark said.

"Huge, no. Secret, yes," James said.

"Well imagine meeting an ex girlfriend for the first time in ten years. She introduces you to a child that she had before you had even started dating her," Mark said.

"I get it, I don't want to imagine it," James grumbled.

"Now you get why I'm bothered about this," Mark said.

"I got it long ago Mark," James muttered.

"Then why won't you tell me why I've just found out about you today?" Mark asked.

"Because I don't really know. I only found out myself two years ago," James replied.

Mark stared at him blankly, "what?"

"Yeah, you think you have it bad. Why don't you imagine something for me," James said. "Ok, the only girl you ever loved is murdered in front of you, and in front of your son. Oh and she's pregnant by the way. Weeks later you're still grieving, mainly just mad as hell, then your dad tells you that some woman you couldn't stand is your real mother. Are you getting a nice picture there?"

"Are you making most of this up?" Mark asked, looking a little uncomfortable.

"Nope," James replied. "Now if you want to know why she's been so secretive, go and ask her yourself. I'm still not fully sure myself why I had to hear it from my dad, at the age of twenty eight."

Mark sighed, "ok fine. I just hoped that you were making the children part up."

"Oh yeah, Janeway's a grandmother. There's three grandchildren, one's coming. Feeling any better?" James asked.

"No, I take it you found another girl then. I thought Kathryn was dead, moved on years later and I'm getting grief from you," Mark sighed.

"Don't think you won there. Two months after my fiancee died, she was brought back to life," James said.

Mark's eyes widened, "now I'm sure you're making this up."

"Oh believe me, the full story will confuse the hell out of you," James said. He glanced at the doorway, "now I really didn't want to mention those incidents, you really depressed me. Go please."

Mark rolled his eyes as he stood up, "I didn't mean to, and you didn't have to tell me."

"Didn't I?" James questioned.

"Fine, I'm going," Mark grumbled. He quickly headed for the door.

"God, Janeway has poor taste in men," James muttered as he headed for the sofa. He just sat down when the door chimed again. "Yeah?"

Kathryn walked in, "Mark didn't just come out of here, did he?"

"Oh yeah, lucky me," James replied.

"If it was about me then I'm sorry," Kathryn said.

"He just wants to know why you didn't tell him about me earlier," James said.

Kathryn sighed, she sat down next to him. "Simple, I thought people would judge me harshly for it. Plus if people found out they may have tried to convince me to go and see you. You wouldn't have remembered me and it would have been painful."

"Oh, that's a good reason," James muttered.

Kathryn smiled weakly, "that doesn't matter now."

"Is something wrong?" James questioned.

"No, yes, no. I'm not sure," Kathryn mumbled. She glanced at him, "I don't think you'd want to talk about it with me anyway."

"Why not, is it about coffee?" James questioned.

"No, the coffee is fine," Kathryn replied.

"Oh I was worried there," James sarcastically said.

"I would be too," Kathryn said, totally missing the sarcastic tone there was in his voice. "Anyway it's about Chakotay."

"Ok you've gone out with him, and you're best friends with him too. Tell me, it's probably happened to me," James said.

Kathryn looked uncomfortable, "ok but don't say I didn't warn you. Chakotay and I have recently gotten back together. It's nice being back together but we kind of picked it up where we left off, you know. It's too strange, I wanted things to start off fresh again."

"Told you, it's happened to me," James commented.

"It did? Ok you must have gotten passed it, unless there's another girlfriend you haven't told me about. What did you do?" Kathryn asked.

"Do you not remember? Jess and I split up for a few years, we got back together not long after the incident at Thairo," James said.

"Oh right, of course. What did you do?" Kathryn asked.

"Hmm, asking for relationship advice from your own kid. You don't seem bothered about it," James said.

Kathryn rolled her eyes, "did you not do anything and you're avoiding my question because of that?"

"All right fine. Does Chakotay feel the same way you do about this?" James questioned.

"I don't know, he probably doesn't as it's not me who wanted to pick up where we left off," Kathryn replied.

"Not necessarily. Jess and I wanted to do the same as you, but we couldn't for a brief time," James said. "Being back together was a bit overwhelming so we went through a crazy phase. In the end we just talked about what we were doing. I remember being happy about being back together with her but at the same time, because of the crazy phase, it was different and weird. I think she felt the same way about it."

"Yes that's exactly my problem. So I should talk to Chakotay about it?" Kathryn questioned.

"It wouldn't hurt. He probably wants the same as you," James replied.

Kathryn smiled, "now who's the counsellor"

James laughed, "ha, yeah right."

The next morning:
Chakotay turned the corner and joined Kathryn & James going down the corridor. "Ah I just caught you, here," he said, handing Kathryn a cup of coffee.

"Aaaw, you're sweet. Thank you," Kathryn said.

"Wow, you're giving her coffee, voluntarily and as a surprise. What's wrong with you?" James questioned.

Chakotay rolled his eyes, "you'll get used to the coffee obsession too one day." They all walked into the transporter room.

Kathryn took a small bag off her shoulder, "I got something for you as a leaving present, and an apology present." She handed James the bag.

"What is it?" he questioned.

Kathryn smiled, "well yesterday you mentioned that you didn't see any baby pictures, or anything. Well it's probably because I took all of them when I left."

Chakotay grinned, "this'll be interesting."

"Susy told me that dad accidentally threw them out," James said.

"Well she was wrong. I thought that they didn't need the pics as they were the ones that got to keep you. Those pics got me through some tough years," Kathryn said.

"Thanks but these will be hidden from the family when I get back," James muttered.

Kathryn giggled, "aaw why, they're cute."

"You don't show baby pictures to your own kids, plus Jessie will make fun of me forever if she saw them," James said.

"Well she met you when you were four, what's the problem?" Chakotay pointed out.

"I'll look at them, but no one else is seeing them," James muttered.

"At least show them to my mother. She wanted to see them," Kathryn said.

"Fine but if she starts insulting me I may turn evil on you again," James said.

"Ok if you insist," Kathryn smiled.

"Transporter guy, get ready to transport," James said to Harold.

Harold groaned, "my name is Harold."

"Ok sorry," James said.

Kathryn laughed, "it's memorable once you hear it."

"Yeah it is," James said. He stepped closer to her, and hugged her.

"What, is Mark here?" she questioned.

"Nope he's not," James replied. He pulled away from her, and stepped on to the pad. "Ok energise Harold."

"Finally," Harold beamed. He keyed in a few commands, James dematerialised. "Did you see that Captain, someone remembered my name."

"Yeah sure whatever. He hugged me right?" Kathryn stuttered.

Chakotay nodded, "he did."

Kathryn smiled, "what a good day. As you were Harold." She walked out of the room, Chakotay followed her.

New Manchester, Lena/Sandi's flat:
Lena pushed the front door open, Sandi glanced at her from the kitchen area. "You're back early."

"Well yeah, I failed," Lena grumbled.

"Oh sorry," Sandi said. She put a few things on the table. "I guess it's a bad weekend for everyone."

"Why, what happened to you?" Lena asked.

"Daniel contacted us about a Game, it landed before we could get to it. It was lost so..." Sandi replied.

"Please tell me you're joking," Lena muttered.

"I would but I'm not a liar," Sandi said.

Lena marched over to the sofa to dump her bag, "typical. I leave the planet for a day and this happens."

"Oh come on Lena, if you were here it wouldn't have made a difference anyway," Sandi said.

"I know but still, it's annoying," Lena grumbled.

Sandi walked over to her, "well it kinda gets worse?"

"Ok why?" Lena questioned.

"You got a visitor ten minutes ago, he's waiting in your room," Sandi replied.

Lena groaned, "please tell me it's Daniel, my brother or my dad."

Sandi shook her head, "I don't lie Lena."

"Fine, who is it?" Lena asked.

"Craig," Sandi replied.

"Great," Lena groaned. She picked up her bag and headed for one of the bedrooms. She found Craig staring out of the window. "What are you doing here?"

He turned around, "I heard about the test."

"Ok good, so can I be left alone?" Lena muttered.

"You haven't decided then?" Craig asked carefully.

Lena dumped her bag on the floor, "ok you know what, I can't take this anymore. I have just lost out on the chance to get command of a ship, I could have used the ship to help out in Manchester or at least transport me to future Games sites. You want to know why?"

"Ok, why?" Craig questioned.

"Because of you," Lena replied.

"Huh, I don't understand," Craig said.

"Well you asked me to marry you, and to avoid hurting your feelings I said that I'd think about it. Once you left all I could think about was getting away from you as quickly as possible to avoid answering. I chose the mission that would get me away quicker but of course it was the wrong one and I failed," Lena grumbled.

"Oh," Craig muttered.

"The answer is no. I don't love you, heck I don't even fancy you. You don't actually trust me, and don't care about how I feel about you yet you still propose to me. I'm sorry if I'm sounding harsh but it's better than keeping you in the dark isn't it? Call me a bitch all you want, I don't care," Lena grumbled. She sat down on her bed. "Anything else?"

Craig swallowed hard, "no." He turned around to walk out of the room.

Voyager, the bridge:
Kathryn and Chakotay stepped off the turbolift. "Anything to report?" Kathryn asked cheerfully.

Andrea glanced at her, "no."

"Good. Remember Andrea, this is the weekend break," Kathryn said.

"I know, I'm only sticking around for a little while," Andrea said.

Kathryn smiled, she headed towards her Ready Room.

"What's her deal?" Andrea asked.

"She's having a good weekend," Chakotay replied.

He headed over to the Ready Room too, he pressed the door chime. Seconds later he walked inside to find Kathryn staring around the room, looking gobsmacked. The entire room was lit up with candles, and her desk was covered with roses.

"I thought I'd redecorate," Chakotay smiled.

Kathryn turned to him, "it's beautiful but it's not a good working environment."

"It's not meant to be," Chakotay said. He walked closer to her and took a hold of her hand. "Kathryn, I've loved you more than anyone else put together. I'm nothing when I'm not with you, I do not want to lose you ever again. If you let me I'll make you as happy as you've made me. Kathryn, will you marry me?" He pulled out a small box, and opened it up.

Kathryn smiled, "Chakotay, of course I will. What kind of question is that?" Chakotay's smile grew bigger, he took the ring out of the box and placed it on her finger.


****THE END****

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