With the death of their parents, can the Imzadi couple continue with their lives?
"Commander William Thomas Riker, we at Starfleet Command are sorry to inform you of the death of your father, Kyle Riker..."
After hearing those words, Will could do nothing but feel sad...and perhaps a bit guilty. It was true, Will and his father had never really shared a close bond that a father and son are supposed to have, but the time he had spent with him had been memorable. Now that he was gone, Will didn't know how to react. Both sentiments-the fact that his last flesh and blood family member was gone, and the fact that he had never experienced that closeness with him-were enough to make him decide on sorrow as his main emotion. He didn't cry. He just went over to the starry window in his cabin, put his hand on it as he usually did in his times of deep contemplation, and thought of the memories he could recall of the man who he had once saw as his idol.
Later on that same day...
"Counselor, you have an urgent message incoming from Betazed."
"Put it through on a private channel, Ensign." Deanna went into the ready room to the left of the bridge, and faced the words that would change her mood for the rest of the day. "Deanna Troi of the Fifth House of Betazed, I have been instructed to inform you of the departure-namely, death-of your mother, Lwaxana Troi."
She kept herself emotionally in check, hearing the full details, until she forced herself to turn off the viewscreen. "Thank you," was all she murmured afterwards. Slowly, she began to sob in her hands. Deanna remained in the room until an hour later, when Picard heard the nature of the message from the ensign on duty, and relieved her of all duties for the day.
When she arrived at her quarters, Deanna continued to mourn over the loss of her mother. The last living relative of her family-her last surviving parent-had finally abandoned her. Deanna covered herself with a quilt her mother had made for her (or so she had said), and curled into a ball on her bed. The rest of the night was spent reminicing of all the times-happy and difficult-she had had with her mother.
Will had heard what had happened to Deanna's mother, if not felt the loss from Deanna directly, and decided that even in his time of grief, she would need some comfort as well. He went to her quarters after he finished his shift, and rang the chime of her door.
"Come," she said dryly.
Will went in and looked for her. He ventured into her bedroom, and found her there, a tiny ball eveloped in an enormous quilt. He stood there, merely watching her for the briefest of moments. Deanna said nothing to him. She didn't even bother to look at him. Her eyes remained on the starry window to her left, gazing into emptiness. will would have waited to get some sort of signal from her, telling him it was okay to approach her, but since she gave none, he took the initiative and went to her anyway. He sat on the edge of the bed, on the corner farthest away from her. There was complete silence between them for about five minutes. The only sound that escaped was the rustling of the quilt as Deanna turned from lying on her back, to her side. Will didn't seem to notice. He was lost in his own reverie.
Finally, somehow Deanna brought herself to break the eerie silence. She sat up and looked at him, pain taking him on in full force. When he returned her gaze, Deanna found an agony there similar to her own. Unable to speak, or even comprehend anything at the moment, Will went to her, taking her in his arms, and taking salvation in hers as well. The simple act of being held in each other's arms brought so much comfort. Deanna openly sobbed on his shoulder. As he held her, Will silently shed tears from his face. So much grief was conveyed in the shortest of seconds. They both continued to weep endlesssly through the night until sleep overcame them, and the tears of sorrow became only a distant memory.
The next morning
Will awoke before 7:00am on his chrono. He stood at the window, unable to think about anything. His mind was lost somewhere beyond the room, the Enterprise, and maybe even space itself. Where did life get so complicated? Just then, Deanna stirred in the bed nearby. As sleep began to leave her body, and reality of her mother's death slowly returned, Deanna pulled the covers closer, not wanting to leave her sanctuary, guarding her from the agony she felt.
She turned her head to one side and saw Will, stoically gazing towards the stars. And even though her more selfish needs told her to just stay in bed and let him be, Deanna's heart directed her to stand next to him. After a few moments of silence, Deanna said, "Imzadi."
Her voice brought Will back from emptiness, "Yes," he managed to respond.
"Where do we go from here?"
Will said nothing at first. Instead, he leaned against the window and shook his head. She waited for him to say something. A few minutes passed, then he went to Deanna, took her hands in his, and looked into her eyes, feeling her pain as he did so,
"Deanna, Imzadi..." he began, putting a gentle hand to her cheek, "I...I'm not exactly certain what the future will bring from this point...but I'm convinced that as long as we face it together, we'll survive this. I think...they would've wanted it...wanted us...to be together from now on."
Deanna's eyes were slowly tearing up again, "We have to continue their legacy in order for their memory to live on." With a single blink of her eyes, searching his, Deanna knew Will was right. About everything. She took her hand around the back of his head, and brought him down to kiss his forehead. I know it, Imzadi. I just can't believe it. They held each other, then he took her face in his hands,
"Imzadi," he spoke lovingly, "let this be the last day of sorrow for both of us."
Her Imzadi, so willing to change her world-if not the universe-for her.
"Yes," she agreed, "after today, the future can only bring us happiness." They sealed their vows with a kiss that indeed, promised such a future. All the pain that once existed between them was gone, and with that, their love-and lives-began anew.