- Chitchat-
FJ Verduin


"And then he did *WHAT*?!" Deanna Troi, ships' counselor and only true confidant to the redheaded CMO sitting opposite from her in Ten Forward, brought her hand up to her face in a hurried attempt to keep her drink down. The mug with hot chocolate stirred in her other, which caused a small trickle of the sweetness to run down its side.

"Hush, you!" Beverly Crusher hissed as she leaned forward over the coffee-table. "If I would've known you'd shout it out to everyone within earshot I could have gone to Moth directly."

"I'm sorry," the Betazoid woman said in earnest, blushing crimson, but she found herself unable to subdue a quiet, amused little chuckle. "That kind of slipped out."

"Well, don't let it happen again!" Beverly force- fully stole the cup away from Deanna and put it down firmly on the table, where a little puddle of brown liquid formed next to it. When she looked up from the cup again and met her friend's eyes, the both could not contain themselves. And they burst into laughter.

* * *

"How on Earth did *that* little gem slip its way into the conversation?" Deanna asked once the tears had stopped flowing. She wiped her eyes dry on her sleeve and expectantly looked at her friend.

"Well," Beverly said, still panting slightly, and she mused on it for about a second or two, "I think you were telling me about last night. About you and Will?"

"Yeah, and ...?" Deanna said, not quite up to full speed yet. But she remembered the steamy night with her commanding officer vividly. One of many nights since about two weeks. She snatched the chocolate back from the table and took a sip, as if to hide her thoughts behind the mug.

"When he asked," the doctor continued, "... if you were ever bothered by his bristles when you kissed him on the lips, and you ..." Beverly paused and she felt her face start to heat up. But she went on, though in a lower voice.

"And you had the nerve to reply to him that ... he had never been bothered by your bristles when he kissed yours."

"Fair's fair." Deanna smiled devilishly, and she glanced at her friend from over the rim of her mug. But she began to turn red again, and whispered from that moment on. "And then, I believe, *you* brought up what you told Jean-Luc during dinner yesterday, something about what a turn-on you thought it would be to kiss his bald spot?" Beverly twitched about slightly in her seat, seemingly uncomfortable, and straightened her uniform. "I guess I did, didn't I?"

She closed her eyes and bit her lip, trying to keeping herself from giggling again. Deanna looked at her friend and saw the woman stare straight back at her. But the counselor just shook her head and smiled, despite her disbelief about her captain's apparent inclination.

"I know, I know." Beverly admitted, twitching even more in her seat now she remembered the way that a casual dinner had turned into something more, and she kept fidgeting with her itching, too-tight-chafing uniform . "I still can't *believe* he had that razor handy," she whispered.

- The End -