Summer 1998 8th-9th grades
Author's note: As before, Paramount owns the characters, the ship, etc., but the story is of my creation.
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Trust Part VI
Outwardly, Tuvok seemed cool and composed. Inside, though he would never admit it, he searched the crowd desperately for T'Pel. When he saw her, he immediately cut through the crowd, straight toward her. He held out the first two fingers of his right hand, matching them with hers, and gave way to impulse, reaching out his other hand to hold her face.
"T'Pel. I have…missed you."
"Tuvok, I have missed you as well." She showed little emotion in her brown eyes, but contact with her allowed him to fell the torrent of feelings she had inside and made no move to conceal from him. He sensed conviction mingled with everlasting faith, and tinged with hope. "The children have grown. T'Lyra and Soran have had their first child," she gestured to his side, where their daughter, a lovely young woman, stood with her husband.
He turned, and greeted T'Lyra and Soran. His daughter held their child, a daughter. "Father, I am…pleased you shall be here to attend the Naming of your first grandchild. Senak wished me to express his apologies that he could not attend, as he is working on a science experiment." Tuvok got the impression that she would have said more, but demurred to Soran.
"Indeed, sir. A great many things have come to pass in your absence. If you would accompany us, we have accommodations at the Academy. Senak will join us later." Tuvok nodded, and turned to Sopek, his eldest son, who had completed his time at the Vulcan Science Academy.
Sopek wore the traditional robes of his people, gathered slightly closer about him in the cool San Francisco air. As the eldest son, it was his right to wear the sigils in ancient calligraphy that proclaimed his house and lineage. "Peace and long life, my father." He drew forward a young human woman wearing a blue Starfleet sciences uniform. She looked slightly nervous, but matched her first two fingers to Sopek's. "Father, this is my fiancée."
Tuvok looked closer at her, noting the lieutenant's pips at her collar, her dark hair and striking blue eyes. Shyly, she began, "Lieutenant Junior Grade Liorei Dara, sir. Part of the medical staff aboard the USS Venture. Your son and I met when the Venture visited Vulcan to pick up medical supplies and transported Vulcan ambassadors from the Council here on Earth." He nodded with approval at her composure and accepted her small smile.
"Indeed, Lieutenant Dara. Might I inquire as to the date of the wedding?"
"Two months from now on Vulcan in the Shardarr Mountains, near your ancestral estate." Liorei flushed with what he read as excitement as she spoke, but didn't suppress for once the grin that she often wore. This Tuvok could find no fault in, having served with humans for many years. Something else, perhaps worry that he would not approve flashed in her eyes, and he was quick to reassure her.
"I assure you, having known humans for many years, I am not offended by emotional displays." Tuvok knew he had said the right thing , as her smile warmed and she nodded her understanding. "Now, I believe we should not keep Senak waiting."
Sopek led the way towards the Science buildings, and he sensed T'Pel draw nearer to him. She matched her fingers to his, and spoke quietly into his ear, the evening air carrying her words to him. "I believe that Sopek and Liorei will balance each other well. I approved of the bonding half a year ago, and I do not think you would find fault in my decision."
"As always," his voice was tinged with levity, "I trust your decisions. Faith and trust, as I believe the humans say, are always rewarded." Tuvok sensed her slight amusement, and even deeper, her relief that he had returned. He looked only as far as he had always, and there, on the edges of his perception, he felt a wave of love and affection spill into his consciousness. The small smile only she who was his wife ever saw touched his lips for her benefit, then quickly disappeared.
Tuvok had felt that Liorei was right for his son as soon as he had met her. She had her emotions, as did all humans, but seemed to have good judgement as to when they should show. Yes he thought to himself, and allowed the thought to move through the bond to T'Pel Liorei is right.
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Tom and B'Elanna had dinner with his father and her parents at one of the restaurants overlooking the bay. They caught up on everything that had occurred, and when that was done, their parents began to speak to each other. The young couple slipped outside, leaving Zya with her grandparents.
They stood and looked out together at the waves crashing below, and Tom slipped an arm around her waist. "Be', I never thought my father would change so much. I guess you were right in telling me his letter was probably good. It seems our parents are getting along quite well."
"Well, Helmboy, one thing's for certain; I wouldn't have believed you if you had said to me my parents were back together. I guess they realized what a treasure love is. And Zya seems to like your father."
He smiled at that, "Yeah, well, my father always was close to my sisters and me when we were children. It was just when I grew up and he became engrossed in Starfleet, I always tried to impress him. And that was when it seemed he ignored me." His smile grew sad. "If only Mom had been around to see me back."
"What did Admiral Paris tell you about her?" B'Elanna reached over and took his other hand.
"My mother died a year after Voyager was declared lost. Dad said that Mom was so depressed that things stopped mattering to her. What he didn't say to you was that she also told him how much his approval meant to me before she died-" his voice caught in his throat, and in the moonlight B'Elanna could see tears running over his face. She turned and held him close.
"Oh, Tom, I'm sorry. You must have loved her a lot. I know that if I lost either of my parents and found out three years later, it would hurt so much. Shh, shh, it's okay. I'm here. And I promise I'll never leave you. Not now, not ever. I swear on my honor and on our love that I will always be here for you."
His tears had turned to the occasional quiet sob, his chest heaving in an attempt to control his grief. "I'm glad though, that I have you. Dad would never admit it, but he misses Mom too much to contemplate. He always loved her so much. I guess that Jenn and Laura decided they wouldn't intrude tonight, and found somewhere else to be. My sisters," he explained at er questioning look. "I think you would get along with them really well. I'll bring you home with me later, and you can meet them."
"That's sounds good, Tom. I think we should get back inside before someone comes out looking for us. Besides, Zya needs to get to bed. It's been a long day." She gently tugged him back inside with her, and sat back down at their table. Admiral Paris was still talking to K'Maile and Miguel Torres, and Zya was asleep in her grandmother's arms. She smiled; things were right, at least for now. And that was enough for her, and glancing over at Tom, B'Elanna knew that his thoughts mirrored hers.
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