TITLE: “Soft”

AUTHOR: Deb Gramlich
SERIES: Voyager
PAIRING: Paris/Torres
RATING: PG-PG13 (depending on your tastes)
DATE: May 1, 2001
DISCLAIMOR: Paramount/Viacom owns all the characters here in. Not infringement is intended.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Last night, I was talking to a friend on the phone, again teasing her about the time I was able to get my picture taken with Robert Duncan McNeill. I always laugh that his skin was so absolutely soft. She dared me to write a story about it. So, here it is. This is dedicated to her. =)


B’Elanna Torres sighed deeply before shifting to her side. A quick glance at the chronometer told her that it was now 0300 hours, and she was still wide awake.

The baby was the problem on this night. She was moving, kicking, doing summersaults, and pressing on Mommy’s bladder… seemingly doing whatever she could to insure that B’Elanna would be getting no sleep at all.

Now laying on her right side, B’Elanna was staring into the face of her husband Tom. He was, of course, having no trouble sleeping at all. His mouth was parted slightly as he breathed deeply, eliciting a slight sound not quite loud enough to be called a snore.

B’Elanna rubbed her belly with her left hand; trying to best she could to calm the active baby down. Alas, nothing seemed to work.

B’Elanna suddenly felt envious as she watched Tom sleep. Why should he be able to get a good night’s sleep every night when she was forced to put up with their unborn daughter’s Anbu Jitsu training?

Tom twitched suddenly, his hand popping out from under the blanket and rubbing his eyes before opening them. Seeing B’Elanna watching him, he sat up a bit alarmed.

“Is everything okay?” He mumbled to her, putting his hand on her belly.

‘No! I’m tired and can’t sleep. I have to go to the bathroom again but don’t have the energy to get up. I’m hungry but don’t want to get out of this comfortable position to get something to eat. And dammit, I have another 4 weeks of this!!!!’

“Yes, I’m fine.” She spoke aloud to him.

“M’okay.” Came his muffled reply as he drifted back to sleep, his hand still resting on her belly. Well, at leas the baby seemed to be calming down slightly.

B’Elanna placed her hand on Tom’s, gently tracing his fingers. She’d always enjoyed the feel of Tom’s soft skin; it was one of her biggest comforts on nights like this.

Moving from his fingers, she gently moved her fingers to his wrist and up his arm. It always fascinated her how Tom’s skin was always so soft, softer than hers by far. He didn’t use any type of softening lotion, or chemicals of any type. It just was.

Reaching his shoulder, she traced small circles towards his chest, gently brushing against his chest hair. ‘No no no. Better not go there, I’m supposed to be relaxing myself, not getting myself aroused.’

So instead, she traveled over his collarbone to that little place under his ear that she always loved to nibble on. Tom stirred slightly again causing B’Elanna’s ministrations to stop.

He turned his head in her direction and lay still again, causing her to smile. ‘Does he know unconsciously that I do this?’ She wondered.

Placing her entire palm on his face, she gently rested it on his cheek. “Incredible.” She whispered out loud to herself. She could still feel the softness of his skin even under his day old stubble. ‘His skin is as soft as a baby’s.’ She thought, then realizing that her baby was now still. Hopefully, she finally decided to take a nap.

Sighing contently, B’Elanna allowed her eyes to drift closed as her mind slipped into oblivion. Next to her, Tom opened his eyes to watch her sleep.

Reaching towards his cheek, he gently removed her hand and kissed her wrist. Smiling to himself, he pulled the blankets up to cover both of them as he snuggled down next to her.

Tomorrow night, the ritual would begin again.

~The End~