“WITH HARRY KIM’S COMPLIMENTS”
RATING: [R] For sexual innuendos.
SUMMARY: Harry Kim decides to play matchmaker with a shower and his two best friends. Set between Season 3’s“Alter Ego” and “Coda”.
FEEDBACK: Be my guest. But please, be kind.
DISCLAIMER: Tom, B’Elanna, Harry and all other characters related to Star Trek Voyager belong to Paramount, Viacom and the usual Trek Powers to Be. Dammit!
“WITH HARRY KIM’S COMPLIMENTS”
Tom Paris strolled along the corridors of Deck Four, humming to himself. He had just finished a double shift on the Bridge. And at the moment, he looked forward to spending quality time in his quarters. Underneath a nice shower with hot running water. And a meal, along with a long rest, would make a great follow-up.
His quarters loomed ahead. Tom punched in his entry code and walked inside. Ah! Home at last! Without any thought, he began removing his uniform. Once he removed the last stitch of clothing, Tom entered his bathroom and stepped into the shower. “Computer,” he ordered, “begin shower with hot water.”
Instead of water slucing down his body, Tom heard the computer reply, “Unable to comply. The water system for the shower is malfunctioning.”
“WHAT??” Tom cried out in outrage.
The computer dryly responded, “Please restate the question.”
“Computer . . .” Tom took a few deep breaths. ‘Calm down, Paris. It’s just a computer.’ Now he felt calm and collected. “Computer, how long has the water shower been down?”
The computer replied, “The ship’s water system has malfunctioned since 14:23 hours.”
In other words, for the past six hours. Great! Tom heaved an exasperated sigh. So much for a nice, hot shower. It looked as if he would have to settle for a sonic shower. And Tom hated them. “Computer,” he continued, “begin sonic shower.”
To his surprise, the computer announced, “Unable to comply. The sonic shower is malfunctioning.”
What the hell? Now, Tom was in a fix. How in the hell was he supposed to clean himself, with both showers not operating? Maintaining a tight rein on his temper, the pilot asked the computer how long the sonic shower has been malfunctioning. Since 14:23 hours – like the water shower.
Tom left the shower stall and snatched his uniform jacket to activate his combadge. “Paris to Engineering.”
“Engineering here.” The voice belonged to Ensign Carl Ashmore, one of the engineers under B’Elanna Torres’ command. “I gather you’re calling about your shower?”
“That’s right. What the hell is going on?”
Ashmore explained that the ship’s shower systems were malfunctioning. “None of the showers from Decks Two to Five aren’t working. Also Decks Eight and Nine. And only the sonic showers from Decks Ten to Fifteen are operating.”
“Great!” Tom retorted. “What the hell am I supposed to . . .” He paused, recalling Ashmore’s words. That meant the showers on Decks Six and Seven were fully operational. And Tom personally knew one crewman with quarters on Deck Six. “Never mind, Carl. I believe I know how to solve my problem. Paris out.” After severing his connection to the engineer, Tom activated his combadge once more. “Paris to Kim.” Sounds of grunting reached his ears. What the hell was Harry doing? “Paris to Kim. Harry, can you . . .?”
“I hear you, Tom. What is it?”
Tom asked, “What the hell is going on? Where are you?”
“Jeffries Tube 23C. Working on the internal systems,” Harry replied. “What do you need?”
“A shower, buddy. Neither my water or sonic shower is working. Can I use yours? All showers on Decks Six and Seven are operational.”
Harry responded through more grunts, “Be . . . my guest.”
“Great! Paris out.”
The moment he tapped off his combadge, Tom donned a T-shirt and stretched pants. Happy that he would be getting that shower after all, the helmsman strolled out of his quarters, whistling through his teeth.
* * * *
Harry jumped at the sound of B’Elanna’s voice and bumped his head against the tube’s wall. He had been staring at the panel before him, for the past five minutes, wondering where the hell he went wrong in repairing the conduits that maintained the ship’s shower systems.
Rubbing his head, Harry glanced at the tube’s entrance and found Voyager’s chief engineer in a crouching position. “Hey B’Elanna!” he greeted in a tired voice.
“How long have you been here, Starfleet?”
A heavy sigh left Harry’s mouth. “It seems like forever. Damn shower systems! I can’t get the damn thing to work properly. Only the showers on Decks Six and Seven are completely operational.”
B’Elanna cleared her throat. “Speaking of Deck Six, isn’t your shower working?”
Harry saw what was coming. “Yeah, it is. Why?”
“Well, my shift ends in a few mintues,” B’Elanna continued. “And systems malfunctions or not, I’m beat. I really need a shower and rest. So . . .”
This was news. B’Elanna leaving her post before the completion of repairs. Harry realized that she must really be beat. As for her using his shower . . . well, there was the problem of Tom. Who knew how long the helmsman might be using his shower? Harry opened his mouth to tell B’Elanna about Tom, but suddenly changed his mind.
“What is it?” B’Elanna asked, frowning at the younger man.
Should he tell B’Elanna? Harry knew he should. But he also remembered what Neelix told him about what happened at the luau, some ten days ago. The Talaxian cook had described the look on Tom’s face after Vorik had usurped B’Elanna’s time during the party. Harry had been well aware of the attraction between his two best friends. And their frustrating attempts to deny their feelings. Perhaps an accidental meeting in his quarters would help strengthen the bond between the two. And so with matchmaking in mind, Harry set about a course that no sane person in his or her right mind would attempt.
Harry finally answered, “Nothing. Go right ahead, Maquis. Be my guest. It’ll be a while before I’m probably off-duty.”
B’Elanna flashed her friend a smile. “Thanks, Harry. You’re a prince.” She crawled away from the tube’s entrance.
Smiling himself, Harry sat on his hunches and returned his attention to the console. If only he were a fly on a wall. He would give his right arm to witness the fireworks between the chief engineer and the pilot. Harry had no idea that in the end, he would sacrifice something a lot more important than a limb.
* * * *
A shower at last! B’Elanna could barely wait. Many of the ship’s systems had been crashing all day. With the exception of the showers, B’Elanna, the Engineering staff and the Operations division, managed to repair them all.
After nearly pulling a double shift, all she required . . . needed was a refreshing shower and a long rest. Two years ago, B’Elanna would have insisted on remaining on duty until the last repair was completed. But that was two years ago, when she was an inexperienced division head. It took her staff, especially her second-in-command, Joe Carey, to teach her the joys of delegation. She could deal with working during a double shift. But beyond that . . . well, she was a wiser and older woman. Let poor Harry deal with the remaining repairs. Besides, the ship’s system was technically a job usually assigned to the Operations Division.
The turbolift halted on Deck Six. B’Elanna stepped out and made her way along the corridor. In fact, she nearly skipped all the way to Harry’s quarters. And she did not care if any passing crewman saw her.
Still feeling high over her escape from Engineering, B’Elanna punched in Harry’s entry codes and continued inside. The first thing she noticed was the sound of running water. The shower. B’Elanna frowned. Why in the hell was Harry’s shower running? Did he . . .? B’Elanna immediately spoke up. “Computer, locate Ensign Kim.”
“Ensign Kim is located in Jeffries Tube 23C Alpha,” the computer’s voice responded. Which only meant one thing – Harry had left his shower running all day, the dumb idiot. Talk about ration credits pouring down the drain. For her friend’s generosity, B’Elanna decided to donate a few extra credits to his account. Meanwhile, she might as well take advantage of the running water.
B’Elanna removed her boots and peeled off her uniform. Completely nude, she strode into Harry’s bathroom and opened the shower door. A loud cry escaped her mouth. B’Elanna found herself facing Tom Paris – wet, naked and fully frontal.
“B’Elanna?” Tom’s blue eyes grew wide with surprise. “What the hell are you doing here?”
To stunned to speak, B’Elanna surrendered to panic and proceeded to slam the shower door, shut. Unfortunately, Tom had decided at that moment to stick out an arm and the door slammed against the protruding limb. “AAAUGH!” The pilot cried out in pain.
“Tom! Are you hurt?” Forgetting about his naked state, a concerned B’Elanna grabbed his arm and began to examine it. She found a purple bruise between his elbow and his wrist. Without thinking, she began to rub it. “Is that better?” she crooned. “Do you need a dermal regenerator?”
The pilot’s eyes grew even wider. “Uh, B’Elanna?”
“What?” B’Elanna stared at Tom, who looked very uncomfortable. Almost stiff. What the hell was the matter . . .? For some unexplained reason, her eyes slid downward and noticed Tom’s swelling member. Then she remembered. He was naked. Completely. And when she saw him staring at her chest – her bare chest – she realized that she was also naked. “Kahless!” B’Elanna cried out, immediately dropping Tom’s arm. “I have to . . . I have to go!” The half-Klingon woman turned on her heels and quickly fled the bathroom.
* * * *
Tom cried after the fleeing woman. “B’Ela. . .” As he stepped out of the shower, he nearly slipped on the wet floor.Goddammit! “B’Elanna!”
Tom took one step toward the doorway and realized that he was still nude. He reached for a towel and wrapped it around his waist. Then he reached for another towel and scurried into the living area. And just in time. He spotted B’Elanna, shapely bottom included, scampering out of the door. With no clothes on. “B’Elanna, you don’t have any . . .”
The half-Klingon stopped in her tracks, noticed the state of her undress with a gasp and bolted back inside. Tom quickly turned away to spare her any further embarrassment. “Uh, B’Elanna? Here’s a towel you might want to use,” he said, holding out the object.
Growling a quick “Thanks,” B’Elanna snatched the towel from Tom’s hand. “By the way Paris,” she added, “what the hell are you doing here?”
Paris? “You haven’t called me Paris in over a . . .” The word stuck in Tom’s throat as he turned around. And found the towel wrapped around B’Elanna’s torso – accentuating every shapely . . . ‘Don’t go there, Tommy Boy! Just don’t!’
“Tom!” B’Elanna added in a sharp voice. “You haven’t explained what the hell you’re doing here!”
Tom replied, “Taking a shower, of course. Harry gave me permission to use his shower.”
“What are you talking about? He gave me permission!” B’Elanna’s eyes grew wide. “Oh my God! The big idiot! I bet he planned all this!”
Recalling the fatigue in Harry’s voice, Tom doubted it. He suspected that the Operations chief had merely suffered a lapse in memory. Still, who was he to complain when it gave him the opportunity to see B’Elanna Torres in all her glo . . . ‘Stop it, Paris!’ Tom inwardly reprimanded himself.
“What’s wrong?” B’Elanna’s voice cut through Tom’s thoughts. “Why are you staring at me like . . .?” She paused and glanced at her towel. Red spots tinged her cheeks. “I better get out of here.” The chief engineer gathered her belongings.
Tom rushed toward the departing engineer. “B’Elanna! No! Wait! You don’t have to leave now. You can . . .” he grabbed her arm, “. . . take the shower, first. Please.”
The half-Klingon paused, seemingly unaware of Tom’s hand on her bare arm. He noticed that up close, her eyes seemed to focus upon everything, except him. B’Elanna shook her head. “Uh, that’s okay. At least my sonic shower is still working.”
“Perhaps, but you were obviously in the mood for a water shower. Why else would you be here? Look, I just barely got started on my shower, when you, uh . . .” Tom stumbled a bit. “Well, you know. Just go ahead and use it. Be my guest.” He gently steered the engineer toward Harry’s bathroom. “Ladies first.”
Dark brown eyes grew wide with disbelief. “Ladies?” However, B’Elanna did not reject Tom’s offer. She dumped her clothes and boots on a nearby chair and headed for the shower. Once the bathroom door closed behind her, Tom dumped himself unceremoniously on the sofa and sighed. Green or not, Ensign Harry Kim had a lot to answer for.
END OF Part 1