You Always Remain

It's going to be a good day, Will thought as he walked out the door of his quarters, all smiles, ready to work. There was a huge grin on his face as he strode down the corridor, on his way to engineering. He passed a few crewmates along the way and heard them whisper, "Have you seen the commander smile so much in all the years you've known him?"
Will chuckled softly to himself, thinking, I have one person to thank for that. He entered the turbolift and nodded politely to the current passenger. "Good day, Lt. And how are you?"
The younger officer smiled kindly. "Fine, Commander." There was a pause, then he said, "And you, sir?"
Despite the fact that it was quite obvious what kind of mood the first officer was in, he replied, "Terrific, thanks. Just great." The lift stopped, and Riker happily stepped out. The young man had to laugh.
Geordi LaForge was busy looking over the current warp core status when Will came over to inspect his work. "How are things, Geordi?"
"Good so far, Will. I'm impressed with the progress."
Will nodded, a grin again, making its way to his face, for no apparent reason. Geordi wasn't sure, but he thought he detected the scent of gardenia flowers in the air. He sniffed. Where is that coming from? Then he smelled in Riker's direction. His curiosity got the better of him, and LaForge had to ask, "Commander, are you wearing perfume?" Will brought one of his sleeves up to his nose, and inhaled. He smiled with fond recollection. "It must be from Deanna. She likes to spray it in her hair."
"Oooh. Okay." The chief engineer shook his head, then went back to his work.
While waiting for her next patient, Deanna Troi straightened a few items scattered on her desk. Her attention was first drawn to a small candy heart wrapped in red foil, sitting atop a note. Beverly had dropped it off a bit ago, courtesy of Will. She unfolded the note. It read: You make me melt. I love you, honey. Will.
Her own heart melted from his words. She shed the wrapper from the candy and popped the morsel inside her mouth. "Mmm...milk chocolate, even. Gods, I love that man." As it began to dissolve, the chime to her door rang. "Come in," Deanna said.
Alyssa Ogawa-her patient of the hour-came into Deanna's office with a pleasant smile on her face. "Hello, Alyssa. Make yourself comfortable, I was just getting my desk in order."
The nurse came over to Deanna, "Need a hand, Counselor? The last time I was in here, I couldn't even see your desk. It was swamped with padds."
Troi laughed, and continued to adjust things. "Well, thank goodness it's not like that today..." She moved her computer console to the side, just slightly. There. Much better.
On the corner of Deanna's desk, Alyssa noticed a holographic photo. "Is that you and the Commander?"
"What? Oh..." she turned her attention to the picture, "Yes. That was taken on our last shore leave on Risa. They had one of those instant holo-machines there, so I thought, 'What the heck? Why not?'"
The nurse admired the photos. There was a series of three. One was of them puckering up for a kiss. The second had Deanna placing a kiss to Will's forehead, while he held her tight with his arms around her. Aw, she thought. And in the third shot, the couple was engaged in the most passionate kiss Alyssa had ever seen. WOW. "These are adorable, Deanna. It's good to see that you and Commander Riker have finally gotten back together again. You both seem a lot happier these days."
"I feel a lot happier, Alyssa," Deanna smiled to prove it, "Will has a way of doing that to me."
"You're positively glowing."
Troi blushed. "Thank you."
"I guess it's true what they say..."
"What's that?" "Being in love is even better when your lover is your best friend."
"I know," Deanna smiled with pride, "Believe me, I know."
When Deanna returned to her quarters later that day, she was fatigued, but definately looking forward to spending some quality time with her midnight companion. She came through the door, greeted by the sight of Will lounging in a chair. She knew he wouldn't be sleeping. His eyes were closed, while his feet were resting on top of the desk. Deanna quietly came from behind the chair, carefully placing her hands over his eyes. "Guess who?" she whispered against his ear.
"Hmmm..." he thought out loud, "Let's see...Smells like," he inhaled deeply, "Gardenias." He put his hands over hers, "Soft hands." She giggled. "And a musical voice. Must love, my life, my one and only..."
Deanna revealed herself and came around to sit in Will's lap. As she drapped her arms around his neck, he continued, "my better half."
She laughed, "You got that right." Imzadi, he sent. Deanna kissed his eager lips, leaving Will breathless. "I love you so much," she told him. Imzadi. "You think we should tell everybody that we've finally decided to get engaged?"
She met him nose to nose. "Nah. I say we keep leading them on. Maybe they'll figure it out."
"You know," Will pointed out, "we could always get married right away...and get started on that family we've always wanted."
Deanna shook her head, teasing. "Bad idea. The marriage thing might work, but people might suspect something's up if my stomach begins sticking out half a mile."
"So say you put on a little weight?" She smacked him on the shoulder.
"Oh, ha, ha." They laughed together.
"Thank you for making me so happy," Deanna smiled into his eyes.
"Thank you, my love." The two shared a soft kiss, then Deanna returned to resting in Will's arms.
Life is good, she thought.