Disclaimer: I own nothing of Star Trek, any of its programs, series or stories (Except this interpretation!).
AN: This is a sequel of sorts to "A Meeting in Solitude".
But you will see this is a bit different from the first paragraph.
Also I hope to do a few more connected stories all within the six year span between Terra Prime and TATV.
Finally this will veer off of the canon in TATV so you can consider the later stories as A/U.
Pre-readers: asearcher, Marc Brandenburg, Zorch Central Open FanFic
Blog-O-Rama, The Logical Choice Forum who have help me in getting this little story cleaned up!
Curiosity, inquisitiveness, concern, eagerness, all are words that describe one key person in the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise. One that has since The Xindi conflict has been matured through fire and war, one Lt. Hoshi Sato, Chief Communications Officer, who is now on leave with the rest of the remaining crew. Where would such a person go to while away her time for the three months the Enterprise would need to be refitted and updated? Most would have figured she'd go back to teaching her Anthropological Linguistics class at the University of San Paulo, Brazil.
It is likely that many would go into cardiac arrest to find what she did do with her time.
Hoshi Sato was following her heart.
Ever since her experiences with the Xindi, then the Augments, the Orion Slave girls and of course Terra Prime, Hoshi had made a life altering decision. She was at the moment pursuing that decision as she persuaded her friend Malcolm Reed to find the whereabouts of her chosen prey.
Malcolm reluctantly understood as he himself had seen enough to make a similar decision, but the Armory officer wasn't her and just as Malcolm had his methods and pace, Hoshi did as well.
After finding who she was looking for, the newly promoted Comm officer thanked him with a smile and a kiss on his cheek. It left him wondering why he hadn't seen her for who she was before. With a labored sigh as she left, he turned to his own quest. One that would take him to another world (And a future story folks!)
A few hours after leaving Malcolm and San Francisco behind, Lieutenant Hoshi Sato was beamed to a transport pad off Duval Street, Key West Florida. It was one of the few of the Florida Keys, which survived the initial Xindi attack and other than being beamed in, the island was accessible only by shuttle or boat. The overseas highway destroyed by the attack.
Using her innate skills learned from her studies and her years aboard enterprise, Hoshi took only a few minutes to find where her 'prey' was staying and surreptitiously booked the room next door. After changing and leaving her luggage, she left the hotel and made her way down to the famous Sloppy Joe's Restaurant, now over 200 years at the same location. Her enquiries got her the exact location of whom she was hunting.
Within a few minutes she found herself in front of the city's most famous restaurant. Then she spotted him. Hoshi ducked back onto the crowded street, then carefully took a seat at the cafe' across it. She then pulled out a PADD and listened again to her target's final message to her and the ship.
"I'm going out and visiting the folks, then I'm going Searching for a lost 'sloppy' shaker of salt. See you in a few months guys."
Hoshi's training and experience made it clear to her that her prey was hinting at where he was going. It was not clear whether it was intentional or not, but she knew of only three people who could have figured out the references within that line.
Herself, T'Pol, and finally Captain Archer. All because of their friendship to him.
It took the inquisitive Asian most of the day to learn that the perplexing references came from an old twentieth century song from a local legendary singer named Jimmy Buffett. The Song called "Margaritaville" talked of the city of Key West and the laid back attitude that the place and the people had.
Hoshi now clearly knew why her prey would come here, after the tragic and tumultuous events that had occurred only two weeks before when T'Pol and Commander Tucker had found, and then just as quickly lost their child, Elisabeth.
She was apart of a fanatics scheme to rid Earth of all aliens. The tragic death of that baby was one of the reasons why Hoshi was there sitting across the street from Sloppy Joe's watching Charles "Trip" Tucker nursing a Margarita and seemingly letting the world go on without him.
Hoshi Sato then closed her PADD, and stuffed it in her handbag. She took out her compact to make sure she looked her best, making a few minor adjustments. Then woman got up from her seat and headed for her prey. More importantly, she went to her friend who needed a friend, and hoped that he would find that person in her.
"Sake' warm with a squirt of lemon please."
Trip Tucker's head shot up from his depressive musings, and turned in the direction of the familiar voice. "Hoshi, what the hell are you doing here?" The tone, though not harsh, was none-the-less stern enough to cause those around to quiet down and watch what might happen. There was a pregnant pause as the two Enterprise officers eyed each other, trying to feel out what the other wanted. Finally The silence was broken.
"I'm here Trip because you need me." The female officer was clear and to the point.
Trip's answer was a bit more predictable.
"Lieutenant, I order you to shove off and clear out of this bar, this city, and this island now." With all that has happened he didn't need her pity, or someone else to remind him of what he had lost not long ago. First, his sister to the Xindi attack, and later when he learned that the Xindi and all of the races were all manipulated buy those god damned extra-dimensional beings to almost kill each other off, and leave them the quadrant for their own colonization added to his rage and anger.
Then after the expanse, came Terra Prime and their pilfering of his and T'Pol's DNA so they could use it to make a Vulan/Human hybrid, a daughter they didn't know they had, and purposefully engineered her to die quickly.
Finally the final straw broke when T'Pol came to him the previous week, right after Elisabeth's funeral, to tell him she was leaving for a place of tranquility where first officer could regain her self-control. He'd been deeply hurt when she turned down his offer to go with her. The Enterprise engineer understood fully how that camel must have felt, and a day later he made his own disappearing act, and headed home for a few days with his folks. Then, wanting to regain some semblance of normality, he took off for one of his favorite places to forget about things, Key West and the Food at Sloppy Joe's!
Now he's been tracked down, not by T'Pol which he had expected and hoped for, but by Enterprise's Chief Communications officer, Lieutenant Hoshi Sato. A beautiful woman, but not the woman he wanted. To Trip, Hoshi was a close friend but not the one he truly yearned for. He felt the same as when Elisabeth died, so did their connection of caring feelings for each other. Trips musings though was obliterated with a clear sound.
Hoshi pulled herself to her full height, defiance clearly seen upon her face. "No sir!"
Trip was pissed. "What? Listen Hoshi I gave you a direct order, now Vamoose and take the next shuttle out of here."
Hoshi looked to the man she'd decided needed her. "Trip, We are off duty on our leave so frankly you can shove your order, and then you can sit down with me and we can talk."
"About what Hoshi? Huh? What can we possibly talk about? Who we lost up there? Or, what about those aliens that got us infected by some god knows what disease? Or, here's the best one, how we were treated by people here who either praised us or telling us to shove off?" The exasperation was clearly evident in Trips face and his strained voice.
"No, Trip, none of that. I'm here to ask you what are you going to do now?" Hoshi had learned some control techniques and knew to get Trip to calm down she had to stay calm. She wasn't a Vulcan but in this instance she simply had to be a calm human. A confused look crossed Trip's face. "What? What the hell are you talking about girl?"
Hoshi pressed on. "What are you going to do now with your life? Are you going to go back to Enterprise or leave and do things like you always wanted to do? Or are you going to quit Starfleet, or are you going to mow the grass back at your parents house like Forrest Gump?"
She cursed herself for losing a little control at the end of that but kept her calm.
"Listen Hoshi, all I want is a good plate of food, a good drink, and a place where I can shut all that crap out of my mind and think things out. OK?" As the man was breathing raggedly, full of emotion, Hoshi reached out to Trip, taking his bigger hand in both her smaller ones.
"I'm not going to join your pity party, I'm here to help my good friend Trip Tucker decide what he wants to do with the rest of his life, or maybe decide what he'll do tomorrow. But I do want my friend Trip to know I'm here as 'his' friend, a caring friend is now here for him." The look Hoshi had made Trip may attention.
Trip looked into Hoshi's eyes and saw that she truly was his friend. The pain in her eyes mirrored his own. He suddenly nodded squeezing her small hands. "Okay,Hoshi. But I really need to get my bearings again. I don't want to think of anything heavier than what I'm having for dinner tonight." He paused for a moment watching her nod, agreeing to his terms.
After a few moments which gave both of them some time to calm down, Trip had an idea. "Hey, you ever been to Truman Beach? Great place for Shrimp Cocktails and Lobster. Then we can watch the sunset. And you know what else? That place is just like a mini-carnival. Used to like to go there when I was feeling down."
Hoshi saw it wasn't as much wanting her to see it as much as her to be there with him to see it.
"No, I've never been there. That sounds great." Trip paid his tab, and and they both headed out to the Beach. An open-air seafood shack had that lobster Trip had mentioned and they both purchased some of the dishes.
Once seated, Hoshi asked, "So this is an everyday thing?" She was a bit wide eyed as they viewed the various artists. Mimes, a tightrope walker and a flame eater performed as they were now seated on a platform about five feet above the boardwalk at Truman's Beach.
A set of picnic tables next to an walk up eatery occupied two-thirds of the platform.
"Oh this is nothing, You need to come during 'Fantasy Fest'. It gets really wild here."
Trip had a genuine smile for the first time since Hoshi had found him, and she smiled back. He then described his experiences over the years he attended the 150 year old festival. He told her about the Hemingway look-a-like contest, and Captain Morgan's Costume Parade, to all other sorts of events and happenings.
Hoshi smiled and enjoyed Trip's explanations just as they watched the spectacular sunset that made Truman Beach and Key West famous. As the day darkened, they both walked to the famous marker which was the most southern point in Florida and the former United States, now a part of the Americas Federation and of course the United Earth Government.
After a few pictures, Trip offered to walk her to her hotel. He was surprised that Hoshi's staying not only at the same hotel but on the same floor as his. As they make their way down the hallway, Trip almost ran into Hoshi when she stopped at the door next to his room. His eyes narrowed as Hoshi swiped her card to open the room's door.
"Ok now how's all this coincidence Hoshi?" Hoshi could tell that she had not pulled the wool over Trip's eyes in the least. The Enterprise's Comm Officer's face took on a decidedly pinkish tinge.
She moved away from her open door and took the Chief Engineer's hand. "Well, after I got the information on your whereabouts, I used Enterprise's Transporter to beam down here. When I found where you were staying, I thought it'd be better to stay here too. It was a coincidence that the room next door was available so I took it."
Trip looked down clearly thinking about what Hoshi had said. He looked back up to her with a questioning look. "Wait, you transported down? You didn't use a shuttle? You used our transporter to get here, right?" Hoshi nodded not getting why Trip would ask her this?
"Hoshi you told me yourself your scared spitless of the Transporters, you told me yourself you wouldn't step on that pad unless your life was in danger, yet you used it to come looking for me." Trip smiled and squeezed her hand smiling. "Thanks Hoshi, for being my friend!" he then kissed her on the cheek. After a few moments both went into their respective rooms. Hoshi was a bit nervous, but she asked Trip if he would leave his room's pass-through door unlocked, just for safety's sake. His head tilted a bit, but decided it was a reasonable request. They kept the pass-through doors shut though and went to sleep. A few hours later a shriek and a scream woke Hoshi up and after a few moments of disorientation she flew out of her bed, still in her nightgown, to the pass-through door and knocked loudly. "Trip are you all right?"
Hearing no answer but continuing to hear the screaming and moaning, she made her mind up and opened the doors and ran to the suite's bedroom where an open door allowed her to see into the room.
She saw Trip writhing on the bed obviously experiencing an intense nightmare. She thought it could be about Elisabeth, his sister or his daughter, maybe his break up with T'Pol, but whatever the reason she had to get him up. She carefully made her way to the side of the bed and called his name nudging him on the shoulder.
That earned her a flailing hit on the side of her face from the back of Trip's right hand, knocking her to the floor next to the bed. She shook her head to collect her senses and then stood back up. Hoshi decided an indirect approach would work best so she yelled in her loudest voice Trip's name."TTTTTTRRRRIIIIIPPPPPP"
Another thump off the other side of the bed got Hoshi to stop yelling and walk around the bed where she looked down at the bewildered, trapped, and groggy Trip Tucker.
She cautiously approached the sprawled out man who was still entangled in the bed's sheets. As she helped him up, leading him to the side of the bed, she reached over and turned on the light sitting on the end table.
There they finally took a look at each other. Trip looked haggard to Hoshi and not well rested at all, drenched in sweat and with evidence of growing bags under his eyes. Trip in turn looked at Hoshi's face, the bruise now evident as a reddish mark growing on her cheek from her jaw to her hairline.
"Oh dear god Hoshi what did I do to you, Darling?" was all she heard as he pulled her down beside him as he carefully examined the inflamed area on her face. For a few moments She was in heaven until he probed the bruising on her face. She started and saw the sad look on his face.
Hoshi immediately remembered what happened. "Hey, Trip, don't worry it was an accident. Your hand just flew up and I was too close so..."
"And nothing. I am so sorry for this Hoshi." He paused a second and then started to remember something. "Wait... listen... let me see if I brought my emergency med kit. It should have a medical scanner and such, so you stay right there and I'll get it now." She nodded and saw him tear into his closet for a few moments, pulling things out until he retrieved the kit. Within a few minutes he had treated the bruise which was already receding away. Hoshi thanked him and then suggested that they move to the room's living area's sofa. As they walked she asked for a glass of water, which he brought to her after he made sure she made it to the couch and was all right. He brought a glass for himself as well. They had drunk deeply from their glasses, grateful for the cool, calming water. They both sat in silence until Hoshi spoke. "What was the nightmare about, Trip?"
Trip looked down. "I really don't wanna talk about it."
Hoshi lifted his chin. "Trip, you know that talking about it will help, or maybe I can see if Dr. Phlox is still at Starfleet Medical, maybe you can talk to him." Hoshi suggested it even though she knew the Doctor was already half-way to Denobula, but already knew how the Southerner would react.Trip pushed her hand away. "Now listen here, I am not talking to no shrink, and especially to our Denobulan 'Dr. Dolittle'. He'd go on about how this would be such a great opportunity to study the human psyche, and I'm not inclined to be that human thank you very much." He crossed his arms as if to say the subject was closed. He'd forgotten whom he was talking to!
Hoshi saw Trip's closed body language and made sure hers was open. "I see, so whom do you want to talk to? A starfleet issued psychologist or therapist? Oh wait, you could talk to me. After all, I've known you for, lets see, five years and I've talked to you before about different issues that have bothered you, and you know I won't tell a soul what you tell me."
Now normally Trip would talk, but given that Hoshi had tracked him down, gotten the room next to his, found him at his favorite Restaurant in his favorite place other than his parents home, he wasn't inclined to be real open with her. But, he knew Hoshi was right. He knew he could trust her. She would keep things between them, that was evident.
So with a heavy sigh Trip began. He told her about the dream which had started out great, with T'Pol and Elisabeth with him at a local park taking in the sun and letting their daughter play with the other children brought by their parents to play here. Then the sky darkened and slowly the people started to disappear. First the older people, then the parents, and finally the children until they were the only ones under the ever darkening skies.
Then a blinding beam of light descended from the skies ripping into the ground in what seemed miles away yet miles wide, ripping into the Earth itself and heading towards them. Trip had gathered T'Pol and Elisabeth to him under a gazebo as they watched the inevitable march of the now obvious Xindi Weapon coming towards them.
Suddenly he saw his sister Elisabeth appear right in the path of the destructive beam. It was obvious what the dream meant now to Hoshi. Who would he choose to save his sister or his family?
As the seconds of indecision mounted and the beam came closer his decision was taken from him. He looked with horror as his sister began fading from view, then he turned and in his arms, T'Pol and Elisabeth started to fade. Within ten seconds in his dreamworld all that he cared for in his life vanished and the beam was now no more than ten feet away. So he yelled until Hoshi's scream seemed to have popped the dream like an ethereal balloon.
"So then your nightmare was about loss and guilt then?" Hoshi asked after a few moments when Trip had finished. He simply nodded looking just as haggard as when she found him in his bedroom. She reached and again took one of his hands in her two smaller ones forming a sandwich of sorts. Trip looked up from their joined hands to her smiling and sympathetic face and smiled back seeing her bruise just about gone and her caring showing through.
"Thanks Hoshi, for being a friend. But as I see the clock we have to get up in a few hours for that snorkeling session you so expertly set up for us." "Ok but now you need to sleep, and promise me you will get me up if you have another nightmare, so I'm leaving the pass through doors open. OK?"
Trip nodded. "Oh yes ma'am, I sure will!"
They both hugged as friends, and Trip escorted her to the pass through door. They parted smiling and both slept well till morning.
Over the next two weeks, the pair had gone fishing, catching marlin and grouper, taking the historical and museum tours, puttering around the island in electric scooters, and generally having a great time. Then Trip invited Hoshi to his parents home, and they had another week with Trip as tour guide and Hoshi became more enamored of his home town and the people in it. They also visited the memorial erected at the point where the Xindi weapon had hit the Earth. It was very similar to the Vietnam and Augment War memorials, granite set on the rise of a hill that was two miles long, to accommodate the seven million names of the dead. They were there to find twenty-three names, Elisabeth Tucker, Trips sister, and the twenty-two Enterprise crew whose names were added after the end of the Xindi War .
Both had somber thoughts that day, and that night it was Hoshi who woke screaming, when Trip came and gathered her in his arms and stayed with her until they both fell asleep. His parents found them together entwined the following morning.
After a very embarrassing breakfast, Hoshi suggested that they go to her hometown of Anjiro, Japan. After what had happened with his parents, Trip said yes and that afternoon they were on a shuttle to Tokyo, then a quick shuttle-taxi ride to the coastal village that has changed little in over 500 years.
It had been wiped out many times by storms and wars yet the people there rebuild each and every time. Their tenacity showed Trip how Hoshi tracked him down, and how she help save the Earth at the end of the Xindi conflict.
He later talked to Hoshi about those experiences, which eventually diminished her nightmares. Later Hoshi clarified that although she was born in Kyoko, she grew up in Anjiro.
As they got out of the shuttle-taxi they were met with the whole household of the Sato family. Anjiro, it seemed, knew they were coming, and a mischievous look was seen by both on Hoshi's mother's face.
Hoshi leaned a bit over to Trip. "Sorry but
my mother sometimes takes things a bit ..."
"... overboard, gotcha." Trip winked and nodded slightly but still kept his smile on, bowing in greeting, following Hoshi's lead. "Umm, Hoshi, will we get teased here like my Mom and Dad did back home?"
"Don't worry, I'll have a talk with my Mom." Hoshi's determined look was enough for Trip not to worry about it.
On the way there, Hoshi had given Trip a crash course on proper behavior. Luckily, Trip's parents had taught him southern manners, which helped greatly. They were taken on a tour of their home by Hoshi's parents, Kiko, and Toji. As they went they spoke English so Trip could understand what was being said. Later Hoshi give him her spare translator and that became unnecessary.As they finished the tour of the traditional Japanese home Trip was escorted to his room which was right next to Hoshi's. Ever since the nightmare and their good hearted ribbing by Trip's parents, they were happy to be near each other but having a home with thin walls meant they had to have their talks quietly.
They both now enjoyed relaxing at the end of the day talking about many things, from Enterprise to food, the Vulcans to the World Cup. They had a nice veranda right out in front of their rooms with a view of the village which rose from the kidney shaped harbor up the side of the hills surrounding it on three sides.
They only heard the sounds of a small fishing town and that was comforting, as the only other place that has similar sounds was the Tucker spread back in Northern Florida.
They then had a traditional Japanese Dinner, so Trip was in a light hakama as Hoshi
changed into a traditional Kimono more to appease her parents than anything. But the
goldfish look that Trip had when she came in to the room with her hair up in the traditional
style, the pink and while Kimono with clouds and stars motif, a brilliant blue obi finishing
with white pristine tabbi socks made the Southerner feel his brain freeze. It took him a
minute to come back to earth and say one word.
Hoshi was blushing, her parents were smiling. After dinner the two Enterprise crew mates relaxed on the veranda of the home, staring at a clear moonlit night. Both had some Sake' provided by her mother.
It seemed as though the elder female Sato wanted things to happen.
As they talked Hoshi was giving Trip a brief history of the village when she mentioned one name, an English name, Pilot Major Jon Blackthorne.
"Did you say Blackthorne, Hoshi?" That stopped her and she nodded.
"There's a Blackthorne that came over during the Founding of Jamestown, Virginia."
That got both of them thinking.
"Jon Blackthorne was an English navigator who was shipwrecked here and eventually became a lord, a daimyo to the Shogun of the time, Lord Toronaga. It was said he was the first Admiral of the Japanese Navy, but it wasn't until the British and the Americans came later that Japan actually had a proper Navy." Hoshi was now alert and waited for Trip to continue his side of the developing story.
"Really? Well if the stories my grand-mammy told me are true, Paul Blackthorne made a home in South Carolina in the early 1610's where he married Mary Stevens. They had four children with two surviving to adulthood. A boy and a girl. The girl Sara married Joseph of the Tucker clan in 1627.
So if we can track the records back, we just might be distantly related." Trip's rascally smile as he finished made Hoshi blush at the fact that they could be related though very distantly. They agreed to check the world's databases and see if this was a fact. He lifted his sake' in toast to John Blackthorne and his progeny.
Hoshi followed him and smiled.
After a week in Anjiro, Hoshi and Trip went to the city of Ito, Shizuoka which was holding the annual Miura Anjin Festival. Each year the Festival honored Blackthorne, who was called Miura Anjin, and served two Shoguns for the rest of his life. They stayed there the week of the festival, then traveled the country visiting the various temples and places of interest, all the while both friends becoming closer.
Later, Hoshi and Trip had checked the databases and did find a connection. So their two families were born from one man.
This made Trip and Hoshi happy knowing they had some shared DNA. They had a great time and enjoyed the food and fun there. But now their leave was coming to an end. They had gotten word that the Enterprise retrofit was just about completed and they received their orders to return the following week. They were both excited as the ship was now going back to their original intent, to explore new worlds, and hopefully not have another war.
Hoshi was also happy for another thing, Trip had mostly dealt with his sadness. At least the nightmares had ended for both of them. Trip was now reaching an acceptance and with that, some measure of contentment.
As a friend Hoshi was happy for him, but she needed to do something more to see if there was more, so she talked him into a final place to stay for their final week.
So, with another Shuttle ride they ended up on the Island of Maui, Hawaii. Trip let Hoshi make the reservations and was pleasantly surprised when they arrived to find a beautiful Bed & Breakfast called "Hale Huanani" where they had a fantastic view of the western beaches and another chance at the same fiery sunsets they saw on Truman Beach.
Hoshi knew that the for the first five minutes, Trip was likely to be a bit mad as this cottage was a one bedroom with 'one bed'. The fact was clear. So she waited out on the patio on a lounge chair covered with wooded slats, which broke up the sunlight and the wind and encouraged cool breezes.
"Hoshi, Did you know here only one bed?" Trip obviously thought it was a booking mistake.
Hoshi smiled shyly. "Yes I know."
That stopped Trip in his tracks. "You... know, then why..." Trip looked hog tied.
Hoshi looked up into Trip's blue eyes. "Because I see us as more than friends, I want to be more than friends and even with the teasing from your parents, and the way my mother had tried to get us closer I didn't mind it."
"You didn't... mind... " Trip was slowly realizing the implication of what Hoshi had said.
"In all this time I have known you Charles 'Trip' Tucker the third, I have never been unhappy to be near you, actually I've been very happy. Then you, and T'Pol got together and had to go through what you both did. So I made some decisions with the reservation of this specific cottage as the final decision. Do you want to hear them?"
After the dazed look left Trips eyes he numbly nodded.
"First, ever since you and T'Pol started... hmmm... dating?... I kept being a friend to you and T'Pol. I'm still one to both of you and always will be. Next I found out where T'Pol had gone after the Terra Prime incident..."
"Wait" Trip was now shaken from his stupor and was getting angry. "You knew and didn't tell me, how can you be my friend Hoshi if ..."
Hoshi took his pointing finger and held it in her hand, Trip quiet now but still angry.
"Trip, did she not 'tell' you she wanted to be alone?" He slowly nodded some of his anger
changing to confusion. "She showed me the letter she wrote you, and asked for my help. I
helped a friend, Trip actually two."
" Two... friends, You mean me and T'Pol." Trip sighed and sat down on one of the patio chairs while Hoshi lay opposite him on the lounge waiting for him to tell her to go on or for her to leave. She was prepered for either outcme. After a minute he looked at her and nodded.
"That is why I went after you, I knew you were hurting and I can't let my friend hurt alone." Hoshi covered her face with her hand and quietly tried to compose herself while a few silent tears tracked down her face and hit her blouse.
Trip noticed the droplets. He got up and moved his chair next to her and quietly took her free hand in his. "Okay, Hoshi, tell me the rest." She nodded and started to talk but Trip stopped her wiping her tears and smiling, nodding to her that it was okay to continue. She smiled shyly and did just that.
"I had called your parents about your holing up in Key West and what I planned to do. Though their teasing wasn't on the list." Trip laughed and she went on now with a cute smile on her brightening face. "I came up with going to Anjiro then so you could see where I grew up. The connection with Jon Blackthorne was a surprise."
"Okay... and as for Maui and this cottage?" Asked a now curious Mr. Tucker.
Hoshi looked lovingly into his watery eyes , "The only time that I considered myself safe, content and happy was in your arms that night in your parent's home. I haven't had any nightmares since then Trip, not one." Then she closed the distance between her and him, meeting her pouty lips with his.
For a minute nothing happened but the couple's embrace in body and it seemed in soul as well. When they came up for air they were gazing into each other eyes, and smiling. That night though not consummating their new relationship, they slept in each others arms, and did not awaken until noon the next day. It seems that both have driven their nightmares away.
They spent that last week doing things that couples do. Swimming, hiking, sight seeing, and dancing at the local nightclubs. As the week ended and the day to return to Enterprise came closer, they both felt things starting to end for them. They knew of the Starfleet Fraternization rules between officers would be troublesome. At least Trip and T'Pol had been the same rank. They were trying to figure out a solution when Hoshi said something that would change their lives. "Charles Tucker, why not get married quietly? Then after we're underway we can tell the Captain and at least stay together for this tour."
Both knew the reports given by the Enterprise and Columbia senior staffs, both ships would be given Co-habitation quarters. Limited in number but there as a concession by starfleet for the inevitability of the situation. But nothing was said about married couples and these quarters.
" And darling, if we can prove that a married couple can work on the same ship we can continue serving together!"
They hugged, with Trip twirling Hoshi in his arms. While both knew that their Captain would support them, they felt they couldn't let him know before they left space-dock, or he would feel bound to do something. It hurt Trip a bit that his best friend Jon wouldn't be standing beside him on the most important evening of his life, but it couldn't be helped. He hoped Jon would understand.
That evening, on the beach in front of their cottage, gathered a set of witnesses, another couple who've they befriended.
Trip arrives in a while linen shirt and beige linen pants with no shoes as they are on the beach. Then Hoshi Sato came out of the local beach house, and took his breath away. She was so beautiful. She wore a white linen dress, which showed off her petite beauty to all there. She had a garland ring of flowers woven into her hair and carried a bouquet of flowers as she walked barefoot to the impromptu chapel. A Hawaiian pastor stood on the sand, smiling at the couple and within ten minutes they were married. Later after an impromptu party with those who attended, they finally consummated their marriage, and enjoyed their last two days of freedom without leaving their cottage. When they boarded the Shuttle which was sent for them to take them to the refitted Enterprise, they decided not to hide their union. Both wore their wedding rings, and they held hands as they made their way to Enterprise, Travis Mayweather, who was piloting the shuttle, was smiling seeing that he had two friends who had found happiness.
After they arrived Trip surprised Hoshi with the fact that they got one of the cohabitation quarters for the enlisted crew and the officers as well. So they both got to their now shared quarters. This time Hoshi was surprised as the cabin was double sized and had two desk areas, and a queen sized bed at the far end of the room opposite from the bathroom area with the living area in between. Since they weren't expected to be on duty till tomorrow, they ordered their food to be delivered and christened their new room. It was their Honeymoon... wasn't it?
Later on they got an order at their desk monitors to meet the Captain and Commander T'Pol in the Captain's mess for breakfast in the morning. What was interesting was the fact that both of them were invited. At 8:30 a.m., Commander Trip and Lieutenant Hoshi Tucker entered the dining room, finding the Captain sitting in his usual seat, and T'Pol sitting next and to the right of Jonathan. Usually Trip would be sitting next to and between the two, this change didn't go unnoticed by the Chief Engineer.
"Umm where do you want us to sit Captain?" Trip said after greeting the two senior officers.
Normally there would only be three at these breakfasts, with Hoshi they had to reseat
themselves. "Why don't you sit across from me Trip, and Hoshi can sit across from T'Pol.
Will that be OK?" A wry smile calmed any nerves the new couple were having. They sat
and started to eat their food.
The group of officers continued on with the meal, enjoying the filling breakfast as they talked about their upcoming missions, the upgrades, and which of the crew had left Enterprise, and who their replacements were. Finally after a look from Hoshi, Trip decided it was time to call the command crew's attention to another new fact. "Sir, I have to inform you of a new development between two of the ship's crew."
T'Pol's eyebrow went up in what could only be called surprise, and Jon seemed taken back a bit.
Trip was puzzled by that reaction but with another comforting look from Hoshi he continued. "Two of the crew have married, and request that they are not reassigned, at least until the end of this tour of duty." They all remembered that although Starfleet allowed cohabitation during long missions, there was nothing in the books on a married couple cohabitating on the same ship.
Before any human could say anything, the lone vulcan did.
"And who are these two crewmen whom have married?" T'Pol asked.
Trip then rose, grabbing Hoshi's left hand with his, and had her stand as well. Their rings were in plain sight. There was a lingering silence as they waited for their commanding officers to react. Suddenly Jon roughly threw his napkin down on the table and rose swiftly. To the new couple that action didn't look good. Jon looked back and forth from Trip to Hoshi but his eyes finally rested back on Trip.
"Why didn't you invite us to the wedding?" The couple was floored.
"Aren't we your closest friends, Trip?" Hoshi and Trip stared still stunned by
Jon's words. Neither caught the 'we' in his question.
The statements slowly filtered over the startled couple until Hoshi started giggling.
T'Pol's eyebrow rose for the second time in two minutes and Trip was completely cotton mouthed."WELL COMMANDER?"
Trip looked nervous and tightlipped at his new wife. She shook her head. "We thought that Starfleet might not allow us to serve on the same ship sir if we were married," was Hoshi's calming answer to the startled commanders.
A loud sigh came from the Captain. "Trip, Hoshi first of all I would have loved to have been there, and even more I was hoping whomever you married Commander, I'd have the chance to marry you off, or at least stand beside you. So I would suggest a small church wedding after we return from our tour with everyone that should have been there last time."
Then Jon chuckled and reached a hand over to shake Trip's, while T'Pol did the same with Hoshi.
After several hugs some plans were made for a small discreet celebration after they got underway. T'Pol then asked to talk to Trip alone, Jon nodded and asked the same to Hoshi, so Trip and T'Pol stayed in the dining room while Hoshi followed Jon to the bridge's Ready Room. Trip was waiting until he was sure the Captain and Hoshi were gone then turned towards his former lover. Within those few moments Trip had a mental picture of T'Pol, and then it slowly faded to a smiling Hoshi. A smile was now on Trip's face.
"What do you want to ask me T'Pol?"
"I am... concerned, Commander." said in her stoic tone The smile dropped. "About what Commander?" Trip answer seemed to be laced with a slight bit of anger. "I am a friend to Hoshi Sato, of course to you, and the Captain. You do understand this?"
Trip crossed his arms showing clearly his growing annoyance at the clear implications. "Get to your point T'Pol."
T'Pol paused for a moments and asked. "Is this what human's term as... a rebound?"
The Chief Engineers anger was clearly evident by now. His read face and raised veins made that perfectly clear. "Are you questioning my love for Hoshi 'Tucker' Commander? Because if you are, then you never really knew me then... or now!"
TripTucker replied. He was now shaking.
T'Pol calmly nodded "No, that is to the contrary." She stepped up into Trip's personal space. "I do know you, Trip." She looked carefully into her former lover's eyes searching and seemingly finding the answer she was looking for. "That answer was enough for me." Then she did something to show him that she was still their friend, and that she understood. She kissed his cheek. "Congratulations, Trip. I know you will be happy." She turned and walked out of the captain's dining room, leaving Trip who watched her leave to think about all this. It took him a few minutes to sort out what had just happened. He left a minute later a smiling, now knowing that he was happy and he had good friends.
Later as they cleared the space dock's moorings the second exploratory voyage of the U.S.S. Starship Enterprise began, with 96 crew members, and a newly married couple within.
On the bridge Captain Jonathan Archer's gaze took in the bridge, with the people he had learned to trust with his life at their stations. Malcolm Reed on Tactical, beside him Charles "Trip" Tucker making adjustments at the Engineering console. Next he panned to Travis at the helm, and at his left he saw Lt. Tucker-Sato at Communications. Finally, he took in the sight of his Science officer T'Pol. All waiting for a heading from the Captain.
Jon thought about the past few months. When T'Pol had appeared on his doorstep in San Francisco he'd been a little confused. He'd never seen T'Pol look so lost. The death of her child had hit her harder than she'd believed possible, attributing the emotional response to the trillium damage. Jon had offered to let her stay with him and they'd spent many hours talking. Eventually, T'Pol had regained a reasonable semblance of her Vulcan composure. She thanked him and later left without word as to where she went. He first checked the Vulcan Compound and found she didn't got there. With some help he finally found where she had gone.
Later as a concerned friend, he traveled to that mountain cabin, he found her needing a friend. after an initial reluctance, she explained all that had happened with her and so Jon stayed with T'Pol the rest of their leave, and was above all else her caring friend. Through all that had happened there, he knew she didn't want a lover, she needed him as a friend. He'd found the time he spent with her deepened his commitment to the woman Jon knew he was falling in love with again. Their future agreement not withstanding. But above all she was his friend, and for now that was enough. With that filed in his head he turned to the helm.
"Steady as she goes Travis, let's head in the opposite direction from our first time out, and see what's out there!"
And with the warp engines they did just that!AN:
If your confused about that last bit with Jon, read my other Enterprise story, "A meeting in Solitude" and things will fall into place.My second favorite couple was buried with
Enterprise's Season 3 and I wanted to honor that pairing by putting out the idea that 'what if' Hoshi saw an chance to get her man. And, why not within that same time that T'Pol and Jon were in those mountains, don't worry there will be more in that! as for the references to Key West?I live up the coast in Miami and figure that the
Xindi weapons may have annihilated the panhandle and the peninsula of Florida but not all of it and so Key West in still there. Now as for Japan, I based these fictional characters had ties to other fictional characters hence the references to those in James Clavell's "Shogun".
Maui, well I vacationed there and stayed at the same cottage. All the websites I used to get information will be on my author's page so check there!
Course they will be on the story when I publish off