RATING: PG 13 (sexual innuendo)
CODES: R/T (Imzadi)
TIMELINE: Post Insurrection - Pre Nemesis
SUMMARY: Completely dialogue driven. Will and Deanna are faced with a few life-altering decisions that could profoundly affect their lives.†
DISCLAIMER: Characters are the property of Paramount, etc.. No infringement is intended other than the enjoyment of its readers.
FEEDBACK: Encouraged and welcomed.
"Welcome home. I missed you."
"I can tell."
"How is my favorite Counselor doing?"
"I better be your ONLY counselor!"
"Oh, you are!"
"Hmm Mmm And she is doing *much* better now."
"How is Lwaxana?"
"Same as always. Wanted to know what 'urgent' duty kept you from joining us."
"What did you tell her?"
"That you would rather be anywhere else in the universe... Hey! Stop that!"
"Umm no. What did you really give as my excuse?"
"It's supposed to. My excuse?"
"That's better. Keep doing that - it feels wonderful!"
"Tell me or I stop."
"Okay, okay - you win. I told her you would come with me next time but that Captain Picard had you taking care of an urgent matter for him."
"Deanna -- I'm shocked. You actually *lied* to your mother."
"Betazoids don't lie."
"What would you call it then?"
"Creative excuse making on YOUR behalf might I remind you."
"Sounds like a lie to me."
"No need to get indignant."
"How about this then -- a masterful blending of inventive information to cover for your future husband. Actually, I would say that your bluffing skills are getting better and better all the time."
"I thought you would approve and I *did* learn from the best. Although I doubt my mother would see it that way."
"Probably not. Does she think I'm avoiding her?"
"Will, if you are that concerned about what she might think - then why didn't you just go with me?"
"Because I really did have matters to take care of here."
"Oh? What were they?"
"Can't tell you.."
"And that would be because?"
"You can. And you will!"
"In due time."
"I have ways of getting it out of you."
"Did you tell her?"
"Don't change the subject, Commander."
"You will find out soon enough."
"I want to know now."
"Does she approve?"
"I will get you back for this."
"I am counting on it!"
"You're impossible! You know that?"
"But you love me anyway.."
"Yes, I suppose I do."
"Good, that's settled. Now what did your mother say to the news?"
"Not much actually. Other than she was happy we finally came to our senses and are doing what we should have years ago."
"Can't disagree with her there."
"Will, do you think we were ready back then?"
"Honestly, no -- not when we were due to meet on Risa."
"What? What is it?"
"I am sorry I hurt you and put you through so much during that time."
"I know. You have apologized many times over the years. I forgave you a long time ago Will. You know that, right?"
"Yes... I know that. No apologies. No regrets."
"What did I do to deserve you?"
"I feel the same way."
"You really think we are both ready this time?"
"Guess we should go talk to the Captain then."
"And Beverly too."
"Can it wait until morning?"
"Why? What do you have in mind, Counselor?"
"Well, I have been gone for almost two weeks..."
"How about a private session just for two?"
"I am liking the sound of this already. But you know how I feel about being 'counseled'."
"Oh, I don't know... I think you have done all right over the years."
"Don't remind me."
"It wasn't that bad."
"What did you have in mind if we are going to wait until tomorrow to talk to the Captain?"
"Another nice deflection Commander."
"It is one of the things I do well."
"What are the others?"
"Maybe this.. or a bit more of this.."
"Hmmm Well, in my professional opinion, those are things I would say you excel at."
"And what about this?"
"Maybe we should move this to the bedroom."
"Why? Getting too old for the couch?"
"What?!? Surely you jest!"
"*You're* the one that wanted to move."
"That was just so that.."
"So that... what?"
"Uh huh If you say so."
"I do. Now come here and let me welcome my fiancť home properly."
"Your fiancť has been waiting.."
<Picard to Commander Riker>
<Can you and the Counselor come to the Observation Lounge?>
<On our way, Captain. Riker out.>
"Looks like we are going to have to wait a bit longer to continue this particular session."
"It certainly seems that way."
"I wonder what this is about."
"Don't ask me, I just got back, remember? What was it again you said you were doing the last two weeks?"
"Nice try but I'm still not going to tell you."
"Do you think he knows?"
"That we are engaged?"
"I don't know -- he can be pretty observant when warranted. Maybe we tipped him off."
"That is what you get for mauling me as soon as I stepped off the transporter pad when I got back."
"I missed you and you were SO irresistible."
"I suppose we might as well tell him now instead of waiting until morning."
"Then we can sleep in."
"Captain, you wanted to see us?"
"Yes, come in and sit down. Deanna, welcome back. How is your mother?"
"Thank you, sir and she is doing well. Wanted to know when she might see you again."
"It's ok, Captain. I told her you were a busy man."
"Thank you. Now to the matter at hand."
"What can we do for you, sir?"
"Number One, I understand you have been very busy the last couple of weeks while Deanna was away."
"I.. uh.. I.. I guess so, sir."
"I have called you both here at this late hour to offer my congratulations.."
"But, Captain, how did you find out? We haven't told anyone yet."
"We were going to talk to you in the morning."
"Nothing goes on on this ship without my knowing it. I think it is wonderful news and a long time coming."
"Thank you, sir."
"Thank you, sir."
"I also received a communication from Starfleet Headquarters. Will, they have another opportunity for you to have your own ship. She is called 'The Titan' and they are offering her to you as their first choice. They came to me hoping I would have some influence over your decision since you have turned them down a few times in the past."
"I don't know what to say, sir."
"Which is why I decided to talk to you both. This decision effects each of you and one in which I hope you make together."
"Thank you, Captain. I, no *we* will certainly give it some thought."
"I know you will Number One. Now that that is out of the way, tell me about these wedding plans."
"That went well."
"Now we can have our morning together."
"Don't you think we should talk about this?"
"Talk about what?"
"Will Riker -- you know what and you can't avoid it forever."
"I know. But you just got back and two weeks is a long time for us to be apart."
"You have a one track mind."
"Maybe so. But it always includes you."
"That's sweet. However, .."
"I want more than sweet."
"What do you want Will?"
"Future Mrs. Riker, I want to welcome my fiancť home properly. I don't want to think about wedding plans, mother in-laws, promotions, other ships or anything else but how you feel in my arms and all the things I am going to do to your body."
"It won't go away."
"I know. But just for tonight?"
"Promise. We will have a long talk tomorrow and figure all this out."
"Now where were we, Counselor? I believe you owe me a private session."
"I believe you were right about here.."
"Oh yes. And I recall your hands touching here."
"And your mouth was about here."
<Dr. Crusher to Counselor Troi.>
<Troi here, Beverly what can I do for you?>
<We were supposed to meet 20 minutes ago for our early morning workout. Is everything ok?>
<Yes. Everything is fine. Can we meet later?>
<I can't. My schedule is full today. And I thought we could talk.>
<Is something wrong?>
<No, nothing's wrong. I guess I just need the advice of a dear friend.>
<Give me 15 and I will meet you in Ten Forward.>
<Thanks Deanna. Crusher out.>
"So much for our morning together."
"Or our talk."
"Or finishing this.."
"There is always later, Will. I will be back as soon as I can and then we will take care of *this* as well as our next 'counseling' session."
"I will. Now I have to go take a shower and meet Beverly before she comes looking for me."
"I guess a shower for two is out of the question."
"There is no time for that, Commander or shall we say *Captain*."
"That hasn't been decided yet."
"Hmmm I have to go but we will talk later."
"Okay. You don't mind if I go back to sleep then, do you?"
"I suppose not since you didn't get much rest last night."
"And who's fault was that?!?"
"You better go now Counselor or else I may not let you leave this cabin."
"Is that a promise?"
"Want to order something?"
"Is it too early for chocolate?"
"Deanna!?! How could you want chocolate this early in the day?"
"I can always eat something chocolate -- you know that."
"Up all night again?"
"Is it that obvious?"
"You and Will are certainly making up for lost time."
"In more ways than one.."
"What's on your mind?"
"What did you need my advice about?"
"You go first.."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes, mine can wait."
"It has finally happened Beverly..."
"What has finally happened?"
"Will and I are going to get married. We wanted to talk to you and the Captain today but we told Captain Picard last night when he wanted to meet with us."
"Congratulations! I am so happy for you both! Jean-Luc talked to me last night as well."
"Did he tell you about our plans?"
"No, actually he wanted to talk to me about something else. I'm sure he wanted to give you and Will the opportunity to tell me yourselves."
"You seem apprehensive Beverly. What's going on?"
"Apparently there is an opening at Starfleet Medical and they are wanting me for the position."
"Are you going to take it?"
"I don't know what to do, honestly. I love this ship and this crew, but this opportunity is almost too good to pass up."
"How does Captain Picard feel."
"Jean-Luc is being very supportive and encouraging. He knows how seldom an opening like this will come up."
"He must wonder if we are all going to abandon him."
"What do you mean?"
"He didn't tell you?"
"Tell me what?"
"Will was offered his own ship, the Titan."
"Is he going to take it?"
"I don't know."
"What do you mean you don't know?"
"Well, we are going to talk about it today. We got a little carried away with the welcome home party last night to have the serious conversation this is going to be."
"Sounds like he missed you."
"I missed him too. It's weird."
"Ever since we became lovers again and now that we are engaged - everything is just so much more intense."
"Things between you and Will have *always* been intense."
"I suppose they have in some ways.."
"What about you?"
"What about me?"
"If Will takes this promotion?"
"I don't know."
"What did Jean-Luc say about it?"
"Did you ask?"
"No. Between the engagement, wedding plans and Will's possible promotion - we didn't get around to it."
"Nothing. I am sure you and Will will get it all figured out."
"Beverly, you have never been one to hold back."
"It sounds like you and Will need to talk."
"We will... the first chance we get. What about *your* life-altering decision? What are you going to do?"
"A very good question."
"Guess we both have a great deal to think about."
"With so many things to consider."
"Maybe we should just table this for now. When does Starfleet and Captain Picard need an answer?"
"They gave me a couple of days to think it over."
"When would he take command?"
"Right after the wedding. You?"
"I am going to miss you Beverly. You are one of my best friends."
"I am going to miss our workout sessions and girl talk. Speaking of which... how would you feel about an early bachelorette party?"
"Oh I don't know. I don't think it has sunk in yet that Will and I are finally going to do this. Iím not sure Iím ready for a big party."
"I can't believe it has taken you all so long to realize you were meant to be together."
"It isn't that we didn't realize it exactly.."
"Then what *exactly* was it?"
"We weren't ready."
"I don't think that's entirely true, Deanna."
"What do you mean? Why do I have a feeling I am going to need some chocolate for this discussion?"
"You can have all the chocolate you want, *Counselor* but it won't change the facts."
"What facts are those *Doctor*?'
"For starters, the fact that you and Will have been like torpedoes ready to combust at any time and have been that way since he stepped foot on the Enterprise."
"We are both passionate people."
"Hmm Mmm Then there are all those touches and knowing looks when you thought no one was paying attention."
"I didn't realize anyone was."
"Give yourselves more credit, you are both *fascinating* to observe!"
"I had no idea. Sounds like you enjoyed it a bit too much."
"It was like a sport, Deanna and better than any of those romance holonovels!"
"Anything else you *observed* that you want to tell me about?"
"There were all those hugs that lasted a tad longer than they should have. Oh and all those 'friendly' kisses you shared over the years."
"I knew I should never have confided all those things to you."
"Well, you did. It never hurts to have things pointed out to you that you might be too blinded to see for yourself even if they are right in front of you."
"I think I am mortified."
"No reason to be. You and Will have always been there for each other and sometimes your past allowed for an intimacy and familiarity that would shine through even under the most difficult of circumstances. I've envied that over the years."
"You've always had a very special bond with Captain Picard."
"Jean-Luc and I are dear friends but nothing close to the level of you and Will. Although I have often thought about it from time to time."
"Have you ever told him how you feel?"
"Not in a long time."
"Remember when the Captain and I were telepathically linked together? Well, we found out quite a few things about each other we never knew before."
"There isnít much more to tell. There was no hiding our innermost feelings when that happened."
"Anything more recent?"
"No. But we have both alluded to it."
"Maybe itís time."
"Or maybe we need to get back to discussing this upcoming wedding of yours!"
"Nice deflection. Will tried that last night too."
"Did it work?"
"Deanna, you have the most satisfied look on your face right now."
"Do I? Guess it worked then."
"I think Iím jealous!"
"You will find someone too Beverly."
"There you go trying to turn this conversation away from your relationship with Will again. You must be taking avoidance lessons from him."
"I'm not the only one to notice these things, you know."
"We will have to be more aware of our actions then, won't we?"
"You can't help the way you feel about each other Deanna. There is nothing wrong with the bond you share with one another. I would hazard to guess that the rest of us would only be so lucky to have someone that special looking out for us as you both do in each other."
"You're getting awfully sentimental for so early an hour Beverly."
"I guess the prospect of leaving has brought it to the surface. We won't be able to do this as often."
"Now you are depressing me."
"Then let's get back to planning that bachelorette party!"
"You're not going to give up on that are you?"
"No. Someone needs to make sure you get a proper send off to marriage."
"Okay, go ahead and plan your party. I imagine the men will have one for Will as well."
"I am positive of it!"
"What do you know about it?"
"Absolutely nothing. But I know our colleagues and I am sure they will give him a proper send off as well."
"We are like family."
"I want to know more... tell me more about your observations over the years."
"Well, every time one of you was hurt or sick or in need - the other was right there standing vigil. It was almost impossible to kick you out of sickbay to get some rest. I seem to recall trying to do that to you a few times when Will was hurt or sick. I didn't need to be observant to witness what was going on in my own sickbay time and again. The chemistry between you two is palpable."
"I never knew we were so obvious. It wasn't meant to look that way."
"Look what way Deanna? Like you two were in love and yet too damn stubborn to see what was right in front of you. What everyone else saw."
"There's a first time for everything."
"You're a cruel woman, Beverly."
"No, just straightforward. Can I ask you something."
"I have a choice?"
"Always. Now, were there ever times over the years when it would have been easy to succumb to the 'heat of the moment'?"
"Why would you ask that?"
"Just answer the question."
"Yes, there were times when it would have been very easy to give into lust but what does that prove, Beverly?"
"That if you had ever allowed yourselves to lose some of that all mighty control you are both so famous for - you might have realized you didn't need to be as scared as you were of being together. That the love you shared many years ago was still alive and it only took a spark to ignite it once again."
"Who's the counselor here?"
"I'm just telling you like I see it, Deanna. Like we have *all* seen it for many years. We couldn't be happier for the both of you. I hope you know that."
"Beverly, what would I do without you? What am I *going* to do without you?"
"I'll only be a comm call away."
"It isn't the same."
"You are going to take the promotion, aren't you?"
"Yes, I imagine I will. Actually, there are still a few things I need to consider but you will be the first to know after I talk to Jean-Luc."
"I can't ask for more than that. I wish you all the success in the universe."
"I know you do as I do for you and Will. And now planning that bachelorette party."
"Do whatever you would like to do and just tell me when and where to show up."
"How do you feel about inviting some of those scrumptious Edo men? You remember -- the civilization that were bubbling over with love, health and sensual pleasure."
"I remember. They also thought that Captain Picard was their god."
"So they did."
"Beverly, you're incorrigible!
"Just want to make sure you have a send off appropriate of a future captain's wife."
"You sound very sure of that."
"I did learn from the best!"
"Finally! I was beginning to wonder if you were ever coming back."
"Sorry. Time got away from Beverly and I."
"How is she doing?"
"She is happy for us."
"I imagine she would be."
"She was offered a position at Starfleet Medical."
"Sounds like quite an opportunity."
"I suppose it is."
"I'm sure she will do as wonderful a job there just as she has here all these years."
"You seem sure she is going to take the position. Do you know something?"
"No. The timing just seems to be there for all of us."
"What do you mean?"
"While you were with Beverly... I went to talk to the Captain."
"There is going to be a vacancy on the Titan for a Counselor. Every ship needs one and I can't think of anyone I would rather have serving along side me than you. But I don't want to force you into going with me if you would rather stay here on the Enterprise."
"You made the decision without us talking about it first?"
"I just wanted to know what the options were if I -- we -- decided to go to the Titan."
"How thoughtful of you Will."
"Are you upset?"
"What happened to you catching up on your sleep while I was with Beverly?"
"I couldn't sleep without you here."
"So you went to talk to the Captain before you and I had a chance to discuss this?"
"I figured you would be with Beverly for a while and I couldn't sleep and since we ARE going to be married - I'm not going to serve on another ship Deanna if you can't go with me."
"Will, while I appreciate the sentiment, you still should have waited for me."
"I didn't realize it would matter if I checked out all of our options without you there."
"We are in this *together* now Will. Any decision you make effects me just as it does you."
"Which is precisely why I wanted to see what the options are."
"You should have waited until we had an opportunity to discuss this."
"I didn't give anyone a formal answer. Deanna, I just went to see if we had choices and what those choices were. I needed to know that."
"The fact remains - you did it without me."
"Am I going to have to run all my conversations by you first? I don't need your approval."
"That isn't fair Will. *This* decision impacts both our lives. There are repercussions here that we need to think about."
"You act as if the universal tide will roll one way or the other depending on if we discussed this beforehand."
"It's a pretty monumental decision don't you think? It isn't whether or not you're going to get a hair cut. Geesh Will, we had more of a discussion about shaving off your beard!"
"My beard?!? That's the best you can come up with?"
"Are you laughing at me Will? Stop it!"
"No, I'm not laughing at you .. well maybe a little! Do you know how ridiculous this sounds?"
"It's not ridiculous to me!"
"Maybe it should be. Deanna, why don't you tell me whatís really bothering you."
"I'm not sure I can. And I don't want you laughing at me or thinking it's silly to be concerned."
"We can discuss it now."
"We 'should' have discussed it before."
"Why does it bother you so much that we didn't?"
"I don't know.. it just does!"
"Because I should be first Will! Because when you do something like this - it makes me wonder about my place in your life."
"I'm sorry Deanna. That wasn't my intention. Youíre always first in my life. Don't you know that by now?"
"I suppose I do -- at least on some level. I know your heart is in the right place Will.."
"But sometimes I wonder if you realize what all this means."
"What all 'what' means?"
"You .. me .. together .. for the rest of our lives."
"Deanna, I have hardly thought of anything else."
"Are you sure?"
"How can you ask me that?"
"Answer the question."
"Back to this again are we?"
"What do I have to do to prove to you that I am in this until my dying day?"
"I wouldn't get *that* dramatic."
"Then how would you get?"
"I had quite an eye opening conversation with Beverly this morning."
"Now whoís evading the issue. Is that why you were gone so long?"
"I went for a walk around the arboretum afterwards."
"I needed to think."
"About you .. about us .. about everything changing."
"You sound as if you aren't sure."
"I donít know what I am."
"Come here Deanna. Let's go sit down and talk about this."
"Are you vying for my job, Commander?"
"Of course not! We obviously have a few matters to discuss and I want to be comfortable."
"Oh Will .. What are we going to do?"
"Weíll figure it all out Deanna. I promise. It has taken us 17 years to get to this point and Iím not about to forget that or take it for granted."
"I know you won't."
"Do you want me to turn down the captaincy of the Titan and us stay here?"
"Would you seriously consider that Will?"
"In order for you to be happy - I would do just about anything."
"Wow? That's all you have to say?"
"I had no idea you felt that way."
"Deanna -- why do you think I never took any of those other ships all these years?
"I don't know. I haven't thought about it."
"I think you *do* know .. at least on some level."
"How very insightful of you Will. Maybe I didn't want to think that was part of the reason even if I did hope."
"There is nothing wrong with having hope."
"You would like to take the promotion.."
"Yes. But only if you go with me. Now that we are together and about to be married -- that part of my life will be complete."
"Of course I will go with you Will. I would follow you to the ends of the universe."
"You may have to. Are you scared?"
"I asked you first."
"I'm terrified. Starting over. Being married. Leaving this ship. Itís a great deal to take in all at once. Will, what are we thinking?"
"We're not. We're just grabbing life by the balls and letting it take us wherever it wants to. Think of all the new adventures. The thrill of something unknown. Weíve waited long enough -- don't you think?"
"Yes. We have waited long enough... for a lot of things. You missed your goal."
"It doesn't matter. I wouldn't have traded these last years serving on board the Enterprise for anything in the universe, Deanna."
"We are quite a pair you know."
"Which reminds me! You should have heard Beverly going on about us today."
"She's always been a great friend."
"Who teases me mercilessly!"
"You are going to miss her."
"Very much. But I will have you."
"Always. I apologize for upsetting you."
"You didn't... well not too much."
"It certainly didn't seem that way."
"Are you an empath now?"
"I don't have to have empathic abilities to read you Deanna or feel what you are feeling. We are connected, remember?"
"How can I forget."
"You are beginning to sound as if that's a hindrance."
"Sometimes it is."
"What's going to happen after we're married?"
"I don't really know. I have never been married before."
"Ha ha very funny! Didn't your mother ever talk to you about these things."
"You know my mother -- what do you think?"
"I think I would rather not bring her into this."
"Sheís going to be in the middle of this whether we want her to or not. You do realize that."
"Yes. I wonder what sheíll think of me taking her daughter away from the Enterprise."
"She understands Starfleet and how it works. She knows how important my career is to me AND she knows how you and I feel about each other. Iím sure sheíll be happy for us.. Once she gets over the shock we are leaving the Enterprise."
"All her dreams with Captain Picard will be dashed forever."
"That is a horrible thing to say. True but horrible. Although Iím sure that Captain Picard will be quite relieved."
"Theyíll get to see each other at the wedding."
"You are an evil man, Will Riker."
"You don't see the humor in the situation."
"Of course, I do. But poor Captain Picard."
"You know.. I think he secretly enjoys their sparring."
"How can you tell? He always looks mortified to me."
"It's a man thing."
"If you say so."
"I do. Are we ok with everything?"
"I just need some time to let everything settle. Don't you?"
"Maybe so. I guess that I am just ready for this. I am at a place in my life where itís all finally coming together and Iím happy about that."
"Iím happy to. And the fact that itís all happening at the same time, it just overwhelmed me. I'm afraid I will wake up only to find out it's all a dream. That it isn't real."
"Does this feel real?"
"That feels wonderful!"
"But..? Why can't you believe it's finally happening for us Deanna?
"I do. Honestly, I do."
"Hmm Mmm Are you trying to convince me or yourself."
"You know, I would promise you the universe Deanna."
"You really know how to flatter a girl"
"I don't want to flatter just any girl -- I only want to flatter *you*."
"You aren't going to get out of trouble that easy, you know."
"Can't blame a guy for trying."
"No, I certainly can't do that .. although I should."
"Whatís this about Beverly giving you a hard time?"
"You wouldn't believe some of the things she told me that she and apparently the entire crew have noticed about us all these years!"
"Are they scandalous?"
"How much worse?"
"Let me demonstrate. Move a little closer."
"Hmm they saw all that, did they?"
"And the rest?"
"Well, I had to talk to *someone* when you were driving me crazy!"
"You confided all this to Beverly?"
"Well not ALL of it -- but there were a few things."
"It doesn't matter."
"If you say so."
"I do. I wonder how Captain Picard is doing knowing that he may lose all three of us soon."
"He seemed to take it in stride today. He knows that we are a packaged deal now. Even told me that he was surprised I had stayed around this long. Thought for sure I would have taken one of the offers for my own ship long before now."
"Beverly wants to throw me a bachelorette party before she leaves."
"What did you tell her?"
"At first I was hesitant about it but by the end of our talk -- I told her Iíd love for her to throw me one. Just to tell me when to show up."
"That's very thoughtful of her to want to do that for you."
"I imagine that the men will be wanting to do the same for you."
"Throw me a bachelorette party?"
"You are so odd sometimes. No, a bachelor party."
"I wonder if they will follow through on all the old Earth customs."
"Not sure I can give those secrets away."
"You can tell me. Whisper it in my ear."
"I can do more than that, Counselor."
"You won't have to wait long."
"I know. Now get over here!"
"One more thingÖ"
"What were you doing the two weeks I was away?"
"Iím still not telling you. Itís a surprise for our wedding day."
"William T. Riker!"
If you have made it this far - then I applaud you for sticking with it! I know that a piece this long that is all dialogue is hard to follow and so I thank you for having the patience to make it to the end. :-) Hope you enjoyed it!