Dark and Fine:

Fallen Into Shadow

By Lorien

Disclaimer: All things related to Star Trek belongs to Paramount. The phrase, "fallen into shadow" belongs to the late J.R.R. Tolkien and his estate. Everything else that happens to be copyrighted belongs to those who's copyrighted them, I own nothing but the character of Andy and the plot.

Time Frame: A month or so after Tasha died.

Author's Note: This story has been kinda buried by my new fascination with Lord of the Rings and the Elves, but I've decided to post on it while I work on Dark and Fine: II.

This is kinda slow, and I mean more than usual. Also, I changed the age of when Will's mother died for the fic to work, and some other stuff you’re sure to notice.

To put it in another completely different way, the first part is very black and white, in the descriptive sense, while in the second, longer portion color and emotion is added.

Everything else should be rather self-explanatory, but just in case, I'm gonna explain. I've assigned different jobs for Deanna and Will, Deanna is still the Enterprise's ship's counselor, but Will is a rather successful writer. The setting for everything is explained, but if you guys get confused, don't hesitate to ask, because, you know, feedback is always good.

Summary: A story of the tall, bearded man and the petite, compassionate Betazoid, in a completely different universe.

Rating: R for language.



"It's my firm belief that we're all destined for someone. No matter who we are or what we are, someone is out there, as one's other half, living his/her life like we are, going through life as strong as possible without each other. No matter what we choose to be, what we choose to act like, or what we choose to put ourselves through, there's always going to be that someone we all eventually meet, no matter what the circumstances, who will take care of us, guiding us through the harsh times life chooses to barricade us with."

-Taken from The Fine Line, by W.T. Riker


It's Will's birthday; his seventh, and while waiting outside, in the night, and his backyard, where the woods and trees mingle and watch as the world spins past them and sometimes impede on their territory, the day darkens, providing the excitement young "Willy" counted on.

But out of the peace and before elementary chaos reigns the Riker family, the stars arrive before all others, and the youngest of the clan traces them with his scrawny finger, as the tales woven into his childhood mind begin to unravel and take on the voice of this mother.

But as reality and truth takes over, so did his friends and family, all of them basking in the celebration of his birth, or more importantly, the sweets which enveloped the long wooden table that once was.


Catching him in his arms, Kyle Riker smiled the familiar smile his son often counted on when confronting him with news of lesser pride.

"Oooh, you're getting heavy!" He made a face then, squinting his eyes and pursing his mouth, eliciting a giggle from the blue-eyed wonder. "How old are you? Four? Fourteen?" He gasped, turned toward his wife, who had long begun the chore of clearing off space for plates on the overcrowded table. "Honey! Don't tell me h-he's...fourty?"

A laugh this time; showing off his son's white teeth.

That he inherited from Kyle, of course.

"Daddy! I'm seven!"

"Oh...that's right..." And then a thinner smile crossed Riker's lips as he reached into his pocket. "Then I should think that a seven year-old would want...this!"

Out of the corners of the lint-covered, worn-out pocket came a tiny box, and Will's hopes were shattered. What could possibly be in such a tiny box that he could want?

Nothing good, that was what.

But because he was taught to, Willy put on a surprised face, (because, after all, he really was), and let his curiosity overtake him (because, after all, he didn’t know any better).

"What is it, what is it?!" He said, jumping up and down.

The box was opened, and inside, there lay a tiny reptile, green, beady-eyed, and looked about ready to urinate in the metallic box Kyle had kept him in.

More than what he expected! "Wow...where did you get it?"

Hearing the commotion and sighting the box, the rest of the children who had been invited to the party, came crowding around, some of them on the verge of poking the poor thing, some of them too frightened to move, and some of them, just not interested, too excited at the prospect of spending the night in a house as big as the Riker's.

"Don't touch, children, you're gonna frighten the poor fella," Turning his head back to his wife, "Betty, can you get me the cage?"

With a nod and final look at the set table, Betty C. Riker vanished into a domain she often shared with her now seven year-old son, and reappeared just as another portion of the children decided to join in on the poking fun.



William T. Riker (now in his late twenties) stood in the middle of a room of the house he spent most of childhood in, swimming through his memories, trying to remember a time when his life had more purpose and sensibility. The whole house was completely empty and silent, from the smallest sheds in the great backyard, to the master bedroom his parents once shared. The furniture was still there, covered by sheets thick with dust that had collected over the years. Everything was dark, gloomy and the wood creaked in places that Will knew hadn't done that when he'd been here last many years ago.

The house was getting old, settling down in the roots that had been laid way before Riker's time.

He went from room to room slowly, reliving his recollections, trying to pinpoint why his father had decided to sell the home in the first place. He hadn't even had the courtesy of calling Will and telling him. He just moved, leaving Will in the cold, unsurprisingly, like always.

Finally moving to the first room upstairs, Will stepped foot into the room he had spent the most time in as a child.


Will's mother, who died when he was eight, had lived in the room Will now stood in during the last days of her life, where, even though she was so sick, mustered up the energy in her terminally ill body to teach her only son to read and write properly. It was something she had loved to do.

Will bought the property from a bankrupt businessman a couple of months ago, when his monthly cut of the profit he made from his latest best-selling book had finally arrived into his hands. This house was the first and only thing he wanted to buy.

Today was his first time stepping foot into the house alone. The last time he had seen it was when he had moved out of it when he was fifteen, running from his verbally abusive father and moving into an apartment on the other side of town, where his father never found him. Either he never tried or never wanted to try, was how Will saw it.

Might as well start here.

Will began the chore of cleaning everything, the sheets, the windows, moving furniture around to suit his elevated size and began a mental list of decorative items to suit his evolved taste. He started with the window of his mother's room, shaking the dust off the drapes, using a damp rag to wipe off the thick-as-blood dust.

Through the window, he saw a sight that made the gap in his heart grow bigger.

"Willy, you see the mountain over there?"

Eight year-old Will nodded in response.

"Someday, when I get better, you, me and your father will go climb that mountain."

Tears threatened to spill over as Will brought himself back to reality. Of course, his parents never took him on that trip.


The man, brown, thinning hair, Starfleet uniform and all, stepped down on one knee and brought out a black velvet box the woman had seen in his quarters.

"Deanna Troi, will you do me the honor of becoming my wife?"

The couple's friends and everyone else in the lounge watched and waited for the exciting moment when she would say yes.

She held her hand to her chest as she realized her worst nightmare had come true. It wasn't that she was afraid to take the commitment and it wasn't that she didn't like the man looking up at her; Deanna adored David and loved working with him side by side more than anything in the universe. And as the ship's first officer and counselor, they were the two most highest-ranking officers on the USS Enterprise-D. But Deanna had had other plans. And she didn't want to humiliate David by saying no to him in front of everyone who would most likely be invited to the wedding.

"David," Her throat suddenly seemed so parched. "David, my dear, I love you."

"But?" He had already gotten the point. It was one of the reasons that had attracted Deanna. He was so empathic at times, and yet, he could also be so frustratingly and infuriatingly human.

"But I need some time to think about this. It's a life altering decision and I just want to make sure that I make it right."

David was obviously crushed with the hurt school-boy look he scrunched his face into, simultaneously snapping the box that he had asked the ship's CMO – Deanna's closest friend – to help him pick out. He looked up at her.

"How much time?"

Deanna wished she could keep their conversation between the two of them, but since the room had gotten so silent, it was impossible. The first reason that Deanna considered adding onto the con side of her "pro's and con's" list was the fact that David and Deanna never shared an Imzadi bond that her mother and father had shared. She had always admired that element of her parents' relationship, and still remembered it to this day. It was rare but not unattainable in Betazoid society; as soul mates, they would be able to speak to each other like no one else would.

"I don't know. But you'll be the first one to know, I promise."


And the night was over.


Will had barely been able to sit when the doorbell rang. Through the glass, he deciphered the figure as his father -by the graying hair and the proud way he always chose to stand.

A thousand and one questions and insults ran through Will's mind before he finally opened the door. His father stood there, looking for some sort of forgiveness in his son's dying expression.

As Will opened the door and Kyle Riker heaved a small, inaudible sigh of relief.

But he wasn't out of the woods yet.


The two -father and son- sat in the newly tiled kitchen.

"Why'd you sell it?" Will, too immersed in his grief and reminiscence to be earsplitting, looked to the floor where he leaned onto the island in the kitchen.

Kyle was too nervous and too old to be nervous. "Will, you have to understand my point of view. I couldn't find you. The last I had heard from you was the letter that you had written me. You were thinking about joining Starfleet, and then you had just disappeared. No peep came from you until the man I had sold the house to called me to tell me that the house wasn't in his name anymore."

"Did you even try to find me?"

"No, but I knew that you would be able to take care of yourself. You've always been able to." A flash of anger and a bolt of insanity ran through the towering youngest of the two.

"I gave you Andy's number didn't I? Did you not try there? Did you even try??"


"Don't call me son. I was never your son."

"Please, Will..."

"Get out."

Anger began to bubble inside of the senior Riker. "You're kicking me out of my own house?"

And Will blew up. "It's MY house!!! MINE! I bought it with my own money!" He pointed to the lobby of the house and yelled, "GET OUT!"

Kyle left as Will instinctively retreated into his own creative world.



"In here."

David cautiously walked into his other half's meticulously decorated bedroom. He watched her as she packed a month's worth of clothes, some PADD's, a book or two by a new author she had discovered and her COMM badge. She had asked for an extended leave of absence to clear her head and decided whether or not she really did want to take David in sickness and in health. It was a great decision for her and her family, since her mother, Lwaxana Troi never approved of David in the first place, and since Deanna began enduring the receiving end of the sinking suspicion that she would be better off alone for the rest of her life than with David Adel.

"I'll miss you."

Deanna had no idea whether or not she would miss David. It was another risk she was taking in leaving, if she did indeed miss David, then it was another thing to add to her pro list. If not, it belonged to con.

She decided to lie. For David's sake. "I'll miss you too. I'll send you a subspace everyday."


Deanna cringed. Her con list was growing.




Arriving onto Earth's surface, Deanna found that San Francisco was windier than she had remembered. She zipped up her jacket as she stepped down from the shuttlecraft that had taken her from the Enterprise. She would have to find an apartment first, and then report for the temporary job she was filling in for. Starfleet Psychiatry's Chief Counsel Cinderella Ather had left for maternity leave and the first name she had thought of to replace her was Deanna's.

It had been great timing, since David had proposed; Deanna notified more than asked her captain of her extended LOA. He agreed on the condition that she came back. Period. He didn't want to lose a valuable member of his senior crew -again. Her work hadn't been first rate since their Chief of Security Tasha (as they had come to call her) Yar had passed, and then with the proposal, everything Deanna cherished in life began to fall to pieces. She needed this break and everyone around her knew it.

After looking for an hour, dragging her luggage every which way, Deanna finally settled on a quaint townhouse where the rent was cheap, the view was great and the size was perfectly suitable. The unit was two stories, and the wall facing the front lawn was actually all see-through glass.

Of course, there was a long curtain to draw when privacy was needed, but Deanna liked it. It was near Starfleet Command, which meant Starfleet Med wasn't too far off, so it was commute-friendly as well.

She unpacked and looked at her schedule for the next month. Ather had made sure Deanna had the same three patients for the next month, so that she would be able to start anew when she came back, and that the patients wouldn't have to adapt to each psychologist's different counseling tactics, adding further confusion to their already muddled life. Deanna had three appointments the next day, which consisted of a Klingon who had a tendency to cry, a man with holo-addiction and another who had problems with his son.

Each appointment was two hours, which meant Deanna would be up from eight in the morning to two or three in the afternoon. It would be a light workload compared to what she had on the Enterprise.


"Alright move the interview with Weekly to two and the meeting with Ron to one," Will had finally finished removing the layers of dust in his father's study and converted it to his own. On the COMM channel with his assistant, he was planning the day. "Then put the Rolling Stone's interview to four and the dinner meeting with Ron and the director to five. Put Brandon Adam to six-thirty and the meeting with Andrew Lloyd to eight." His new book had received rave reviews and everyone wanted a piece of him.

He had just arrived home an hour ago from a long brunch convention in San Diego. He had a meeting with his editor and coming up after that was an interview with Weekly, the United Federation of Planet's media division magazine, who wanted an interview in San Francisco for a segment they were doing for the next issue. Then he had to transport to LA for an interview with the historic and reputable magazine named after the ancient, long-gone band, the Rolling Stones. After that, it would be dinner back in Valdez with his editor and the director, Anna Osbourne, who wanted to make an independent movie out of Will's book of short stories. Then it was another meeting with the director who was to be making a Hollywood movie out of Will's first and second book, and then a phone meeting with Andrew Lloyd Webber VI about a theatre remake.

Everything was all still on the drawing board, so Will didn't know what was going to make it to the public's eye and what was not. The month ahead would be a busy one for him, since he was to finish his second book which would be released in time for another big hype, and would hopefully put Will on the map as one of Earth's most prominent writers of his time.

About Will's second book, he had had a year to write it. It was the second and final part to the last one, and it was crucial to Will's name as a writer that he released it a month after the movie had been released. The movie was released a week ago, and Will hadn't even started on the damn book yet. He wasn't even supposed to stop writing after the first one. But since he bought his home back and moved into it, plus all the publicity and promotion he had done in the past year, he hadn’t given a thought to it. Now, a year later, Will had hit a block. Classic. It was classic writer’s block.

The second book was to be the exact opposite of the first, one which would concentrate only on the goodness of human life, which, in Will's mind, was love. Love was the only thing that pulled people together during times of struggle, the unbreakable bond that would keep a person sane during times of destruction and all the other "bad evil crap" he went on about in the novel. The main character in Will's story had gone through the vast array of destructive human emotions, and the next book would be the total contrast to the last book, totally contradictory and without a doubt emotional.

Glancing at the chrono sitting at the center of his desk, he gathered his things and neatly stuffed notebooks and his agenda PADD into a black backpack he had found amidst his childhood rubble stored in the attic. He always preferred writing on paper than on PADD's.

His mother always did.


Deanna's second to the last appointment ended as her stomach grumbled loud enough to reach Earth's core. She hadn't had lunch yet, and her next appointment had rescheduled for an hour later. The chrono at her desk showed that it was 1301, so she would have some time to grab a bite to eat and muster up enough creativity to send a subspace to David or Beverly.

Beverly and Deanna had gotten to know each other quite well after Tasha had died, and Deanna didn't want her one month LOA to stand in the way of that. She needed a friend, and Beverly was also a member of the senior crew, which made it easy for her to talk about David. So sending her a subspace was a must.

Leaving in search of the nearby sandwich/newsstand shop that Cinderella had told her about, Deanna left her office. With the new Takami book downloaded onto the PADD in her hand, she read and walked at the same time, something her mother would most likely scold her for.

Ah, she could just hear her. "Deanna, dear, don't read and walk at the same time." And then with that tone, she'll add, "It's not proper!" Deanna smiled, coming to the realization that her mother was feared all over the world and yet, her own daughter would put up with none of it.

Looking up from the PADD, she found what she had been looking for.

The biggest craving for a turkey sandwich with white bread and some avocado and just the right amount of mayonnaise had hit her on the way to work. Of course, there was the usual lettuce, tomato, onions, and bell pepper. Deanna wanted the works. David had turned her on to sandwiches. One of the best things she had come to enjoy with him was a good turkey and avocado sandwich. Guinan and David had come together one morning and made it while Deanna was in her office, off the bridge and already knowing what David was planning. She had warned him that she knew what he was arranging, but he still went ahead and did it.

Something to add to the pro list.


Polishing off the rest of her lunch, Deanna strolled into her office with a distraught father seeking advice from a professional. He waited for Deanna at the corner couch, and watched as she gathered her things and read a quick update left by her temporary assistant. Deanna became Super-Counselor once again as she settled onto the couch next to the upset father.

She introduced herself. "Hello Mr. Riker, my name is Deanna Troi."




Typical Franciscan weather surprised the tall blue-eyed man as he walked down Market Street. He buttoned up the oriental inspired ankle-long black coat as various transport pods zipped along the street beside him. His interview with Weekly had been surprisingly short, so he decided to take a stroll down the street it was located.

Passing by what looked like an old-fashioned jazz lounge, the sound of a trombone invitingly captured Will's attention and he soon found himself sitting down and ordering an espresso, taking in the music. He had even closed his eyes, enjoying the early-afternoon perfection.

An hour zoomed by and soon Will was on the move again, this time into Starfleet Academy, where the campus library was open to the public and where Will spent most of his free time when he was in town. He often entertained himself with the prospect of exploring the stars, stretching his wings, finding new cultures that have long dwelled in the various corners of the universe, long before Will's ancestors were or fighting those pesky Romulans and negotiating some sort of long-lasting peace.

But those were long ditched dreams of the past, as writing had inevitably took over. In his deepest desires, he did want to travel the stars, but never had the chance to finish what he had started because of his other obligations. He could still do it, but it would take time. The last he read, the Enterprise-D would be docking next month, perhaps he'd be able to hitch a ride. It wasn't like he wasn't qualified to be on a Galaxy-class starship.

Will's chrono beeped alive and jolted him back to reality. He calmed the noisy piece of technology and hailed a transport taxi.


Turned out Rolling Stone was doing a whole segment on Will and his book. It had raked in millions in sales and what Will's assistant failed to tell him was the fact that the person interviewing him was someone who had quite an infamous crush on him. The whole interview, in its entirety is below, but what happened afterwards had a lot to do with Will's imagination and the woman interviewer's desk in her private office.


The chrono on the wall blinked to six twenty-seven and the sun was beginning to set. Various movie posters with the phrase "Directed by Brandon Adam" were scattered here and there on the walls with the shadows cast by the sun.

Will sat on the other side of a metallic coffee table in the room, reading the final script of the movie that was to be made the very next month. The movie was going to be based directly on The Dark Life, and then since it would be bad to just leave it at one, the director in charge of making the first movie would also make the second, The Fine Line. It was a huge production and Will had to be there at the site, every week or so to make sure everything was as he had imagined it, that everything was matched correctly to what he foresaw.

The script was the most crucial foundation of the movie. Will had written the first draft, (maintaining his usual workaholic status) and then given it to the writer that would eventually produce a one-of-a-kind script in which the actors and the actresses would all slave over, perfecting their performances and then watching it over and over again with their grandchildren, telling them of the little stories behind each shot and detail of the set, and possibly even of their meeting Will.

Will found himself suddenly nervous and excited with pride and admiration. He was proud of himself for writing such a good book, and excited that so many men and women had gotten together to decide to make a movie out of the book that he had written during his dark ages.

The next book would be brighter, fluffier, full of love and compassion, the opposite of its significant other, often called by Will's assistant, the girl. It would be about camaraderie and the strength in life that we develop as we grow and meet new trials, learning new lessons all the way. It was the exact opposite of Will, who had become quiet but otherwise charming, and mysterious, yet nonetheless dark and private. Many admirers flocked to Alaska just to get a glimpse of the man who had written the masterpiece, the one that would be talked about well after he was gone.

"Well?" The man excitedly awaited Will's final judgment call. "What do you think? Is it too much? Did I over do it? Come on, you can’t decide to stay silent now..."

Will smiled and looked toward the man with a twinkle in his eye and replied, "It's perfect. When does shooting begin?"

The champagne bottle popped open on the other side of the door with cheers and hooray's coming from the director and the rest of the already hired crew.




Deanna sat awake in her apartment, at her desk, at a quarter to one. Two white strings, strong enough to withstand a strong pull, but delicate enough to wear were being tied together by Deanna's restless hands, knotting each one together and binding them forever.

It was a quarter to one in the morning and she couldn't fall asleep. At first, it was because Deanna had forgotten to send a subspace to David. She didn't like it hanging over her conscience before she was about to enter her own little world. She recorded it and then sent it, and hoped she would be able to get some sleep before work started hours later.

2400 came and went when she finally decided she had to get up and do something to induce drowsiness.

It was something she had picked up during her more creative years, during secondary school, when matters in her life had just begun to complicate themselves, and Deanna almost found herself on the brink of flunking out. Her mother pressured her to take on the family inheritance, her teachers and friends told her to do what she wanted to do, which she really had no idea as to what that was.

At first it was something she liked to do. Making them out of everyday 21st century Betazoid items made her feel at peace and helped her think. It was the one place her mother couldn't reach her and when Deanna truly felt alone and at ease. Nowadays, everything was locked away with her other childhood items in her storage space on Betazed. Nobody ever saw them, except Lwaxana, and Deanna intended to keep it that way.

Except now there was another person to think about. Deanna always thought she'd be able to share things like what she made with her husband, but with David, she wasn't so sure.

Deanna's hand's finally ceased to remain in its active state and limped loosely at her side. She gathered everything in the small bag she always kept with her and went to bed.


The next morning, she got dressed in her Starfleet uniform, COMM badge and pips, and went down to work bright and early. The sun was barely visible amidst the gray sky that had formed overnight and it looked as if the Gods were going through a bout of depression again. Giggling, the Betazoid remembered where that belief had come from. She remembered asking her mother why it rained and her mother, being the creative one that she is, said that the god's were crying.

They were in a transport pod, heading home. Once in a while, Lwaxana even rode along. That was what had happened that day. Outside, streams of blue and yellow were mixed with the rain that started pouring down from the heavens.

Deanna's brown locks bounced as she turned her head to ask, {Mommy?}

Lwaxana smiled. She always loved that. {Yes little one?}

{Why is it raining? Why does it come from the sky and not the ground? Why does it make everything so dark?} Deanna's young mind had been bursting with questions back when she didn't know how to find her own answers.

{Well,} Lwaxana pointed to the "tear-drops". {You see, the God's are crying!}

Deanna gasped. "Why?"

"I don't know, honey." She smiled again. Deanna always made her smile, no matter kind of feelings were attached to her questions. She stroked her daughter's hair as she said, "Maybe there's too much violence in the universe and they don't like it."

But something didn't click with Deanna. She still didn't buy it. "But what about the Klingon's? Mr. Blashke told us that Klingons like violence!"

{I don’t know. I'm sorry little one, but the God's can be very moody at times!}

Her father wasn't there, but Lwaxana made up for it to her best ability and Deanna was thankful for that.


[David is miserable without you, Dea. Maybe you should come back and console him a little bit. You know, do a little dance, make a little love...]


[Just a suggestion! Hey listen, I have to go. I promised Wesley I would have lunch with him.]

"Alright," The dark-haired counselor smiled before cutting the channel. "Bye Beverly."

[Bye. Crusher out.]



"David! I didn't expect you to call!"

David calmly but hesitantly launched into a well memorized speech, telling Deanna what he had planned to tell her in the first place. And as he did so, on the inside, he was so filled with hope that he managed to see through the expression his "soon-to-be fiancée" was giving him.

[I've been offered a captainship on the USS Newton. They tell me that she's just been built from Utopia and they want someone experienced to tame her.] Quietly, and slower, he finished, [I've decided to take it. But they want me to report to my new posting in a week, so I need to know now. Is it a yes or a no?]

She knew it was wrong, that she should be feeling a feeling completely different than the one she was so strongly denying, but as the intensity of the emotion grew stronger, she found herself a victim to her own reaction.

She couldn't say it. She really couldn't. She loved David, a lot. He made her happy and even made her laugh once in a while. He surprised her in so many ways when she wanted to give up and in turn, he never gave up on her when she felt like there was nothing to be happy for. That wasn't something she could just forget.

Deanna always thought that it would never escalate to this. She thought she would be able to just break it off with David, and he would never propose to her. But what Deanna didn't realize was that by lying to herself, she was lying to David. The face she put on when he was around wasn't one of love, it was false. Fake. Forged even. Sometimes, when she was practicing it in front of a mirror, she laughed to herself saying that she was just excited to be seeing him. She wanted to make sure that he was a good smile. But what really was happening was that she wanted to perfect that face.

"It's a no."




"When you decided to become a psychologist or psychiatrist or whatever, did you think of the doctor-patient relationship? Of course you did. Its part of the whole doctor thing. Heck, you probably did it before considering the career path you are on now. You have to have explored freely, by yourself, every nook and cranny of the world before actually entering it, making sure that this is indeed what you want to do with the rest of your life. Especially in medicine. Because it surrounds our everyday lives in a cut or an argument, it has to be that you can't help but notice each and every intricacy of it. Whether its psychiatry or surgery, you listen carefully to the convoluted details of where each word sputtered from the arguer. You try to establish a connection with it and the arguer's past, putting your Freudian face on. As a surgeon, you must watch where you cut closely, because one cut, wrong or right may affect the patient forever."

Deanna sat in her well-lit office, talking to the one patient she felt didn't really need her help.

But apparently, he and his son were beyond help. Kyle Riker had tried everything with him, from the guilt trip to the truth to arguing with an attitude, who Deanna found out was the famous author, William T. Riker. She didn't want to impose on his life, and seeing how much Kyle was affected by the relationship, she could guess how William would react.

But Deanna was running out of ideas. "Kyle, I don't know if this is a good idea or not, but it would probably help a great deal if William came in with you someday and we could all sit down and talk." Kyle sighed rather loudly and Deanna knew immediately what he was going to tell her. "Whether or not he wants to."


"I'm NOT going!" Will screamed at his father, trying to affectively get his point across. It seemed like he wouldn’t take his answer, which was definitely a no. Kyle was about to retaliate when Will came up with another smart retort. "I am NOT going to some shrink's office just so she can tell me that I have issues with my father!! I know that for myself!"

"You're acting like a twelve year-old. Shut up and meet me at Starfleet Psychiatry's Chief Counsel office tomorrow at 1300."

Will wasn't going to let him win. He was right, but that didn't mean Will would let him win. "You mean one o' clock PM."

And Kyle felt the same way, getting the last word, as always. "No, I mean 1300 hours."


"The first meeting with the patient is as important as your first impression made with a Starfleet captain. A bad first meeting is as bad as disobeying your captain on the first day. Maybe you can act a certain way for a certain period of time to make up for it, but sooner or later your real face will come to play and then what will you do? It's inevitable. "

"I don't think we can wait for him any longer."

Deanna and Will were seated across from each other in the corner of her office waiting for Kyle. Deanna sat with her legs crossed, working on her PADD and Will sat across from her with a blank piece of paper in his journal. He felt Deanna's eyes glance slightly from their position on her PADD to Will's unmoving pencil. He could feel her skepticism when she failed to mention anything about it.

As she placed her PADD on the table in front of her, Will closed his notebook and began to pack up. His father wasn't going to come and Will had better things to do.

"Where are you going?"

The man stood and strapped on his backpack. "Home." As attractive as she was, Will still couldn't stay just for her. She was tempting, but he had a deadline and nothing to submit. If he let himself, he could panic like crazy with immense cups of coffee by his side.

Deanna, on the other hand, had let herself panic. If Kyle wasn't going to show up, William's visit would've come of no use. He would most likely decided not to show up next time too.

{Roni to Troi.}

Saved by the assistant.

Deanna tapped her COMM badge. "Yes Beth?"

{Kyle Riker has called to say that he would be arriving a little late. He would also like to know if William will be staying.}

Deanna looked to Will, making eye contact and finding herself rendered to his deep, buzzworthy, ice blue eyes. At first it felt a little awkward, waiting for his response like that. But then he nodded and sat back down, digging through his backpack like an archeologist looking for some unknown artifact.

{Hello? Deanna?}

Deanna was jolted back to reality as she answered her. "Yes, he will be staying. Tell Kyle to hurry up."

{Yes ma'am. Roni out.}


Deanna couldn't concentrate on what she had been thinking before she and Will had made their eye contact. She couldn't remember what she had been doing for that matter. She found herself building castles in the air as the damsel in distress and him as her hero prince. Her metallic pen used with PADD's sat in her fingers unmoved as Will's pencil busily recorded whatever he had been previously stuck on.

Deanna was about to ask him what he was writing when Beth poked her head into the room.

"Kyle Riker is here to see you."

Deanna nodded. "Let him in."

Deanna could almost hear Will's pencil stop in mid sentence. His notebook was quickly put away into his black backpack and ready for his father. In a way, it reminded Deanna of her mother.

Kyle Riker strode into the room, hesitant at first, and sat a seat away from his son.


"When a patient rejects your advice, you have to ask yourself why. Was it something you said? It couldn't have been. You chose your words as carefully as they did theirs. Did you do something wrong? Or was it their problem that you have to add onto the report? So you've scheduled them for another appointment. It doesn't mean that they'd be glad or even willing to come. I remember something someone said at a convention once. "Without advice, plans go awry." You can't give up on the patient even though you want to. They've rejected your advice, but you have to make it known to them that this is an obstacle in their life, and without your advice, they can't plan the rest of it properly. They have to get past this bump in the road and they've come to you because they don't know what else to do. "

"It's not human nature to automatically resort to professional advice at first try. But that's a whole different subject. For now, just concentrate on your patient."