Challenge #3 from Imzadi List:

In this challenge you get a negative of a picture, no color, no real description, just a brief look at a scene. You have the freedom to color it in as you
wish, just use the scene somewhere in the story.

The negative is this: Deanna Troi is sitting in front of a fire reading something she is holding in her hands. She is crying.

Let your imaginations soar and your fingers fly!


Challenge #3 Response

Disclaimer: Standard


Her name comes as a whisper to my lips and I am not surprised
she hasn't heard me.  At this second in time, I am content just to
watch her from afar, in front of a replicated stone fireplace which
represents our promised future home.  All I can see at this
moment is her back, so at this moment I am content for the first
time, in a long time.  No, I am more then content, I am for a
moment at peace.

But like everything in our lives lately, the perfect moment is
shattered, and Deanna shifts in her seated position so that I no
longer just see the back of her.  Instead now I see a profile, my
wife, PADD gripped tightly in her hands, tears welled in her eyes
refusing to fall.

My heart jumps from my chest to my throat at the sight.  I know
deep down I should be prepared.  Beverly warned me, the
Captain warned me, my own logical mind warned me and yet my
heart could not allow me to think of Deanna as broken.

But she is.  And it is so damn apparent in her slumped posture
and dead far away expression that I should have been aware.

My own grieving period should not have pulled me away from her
when she obviously needed me the most.


This time I see a spark of acknowledgment in her eyes as she
slowly turns to meet my gaze.

Slow.  Everything lately is slow.

"Yes Will."

Her voice is flat, technical, rival to Data's, and again I am struck
by what Beverly has said.  About how Deanna has locked away
her emotions to spare me and how she has suffered.

My own pain selfishly let me let her be my rock and now I wonder
if I will be able to find my wife under all the stone.

"Deanna what are you looking at?"

I walk from the doorway and allow the doors of the holodeck
close shut behind me.  Now we are completely submersed in
our fantasy dream home.

Yet neither one of us feel its magic anymore.

"Medical charts."

"You medical charts?"

I watch Deanna head fall guiltily.  She doesn't need to answer
that.  We both know I am correct.

"Deanna I don't think your going to find anything in those charts
that is going to explain what happened.  Beverly explained why
this happens.  Despite all medical advancements its still a very
common tragedy"

Without thinking I slide down onto the floor next to her.  Both of us
stare at the fire because as much as I hate to admit it, neither
one of us is strong enough to make the other one meet eye to

The pain is just to much and I know my text book reassurance
was probably little to no help.

"Beverly's not perfect - she's is human, she could have made a

I hear the slight, pained waver in Deanna's voice, and I find
myself aching to take her in my arms and tell her everything was
going to be okay.

Problem was after six months I didn't know if everything was
going to be okay, with her, or I, or us.

"Will, I'm sorry."

Now my eyes close as I feel tears come into my eyes. 

She still thought it was her fault.  How she had let herself take
the blame, when all the trauma was thrown upon her

Why was I such a jerk.

Why haven't I done this sooner.

Turning from the fire I reach my hand to her chin and force her to
look at me.

Although filled with pain, those dark brown eyes still reached to
my soul.  Despite there loveless look I believed deep down, she,
my love, my Imzadi, was still in there.  Surviving.

Six months has been to long to not stare into her eyes.

"Deanna, you didn't cause the miscarriage to happen."

"But I panicked.  I panicked and I worried and I brought to much
stress into their young lives.  I could barely take what was
happening, how could they be expected.  Why didn't I shut them
off like a caring mother would have."

Again her voice is cold and metallic and I know she has relived
this moment to many times in her head to convince her of
anything different.

But I was going to try.

I had to try.

"Imzadi, if we are going to place blame, place blame on me.  I
took the away mission despite the fact the Captain told me
someone else could go in my place.  I took the away mission
that took me away from. . ."

Them.  No  I won't say them. 

". . .you at the most critical time of your pregnancy.  I knew you
were having difficulty and I went anyway."

Yes.  I went into hostile territory.  I went, I was captured, foolishly
held hostage and when I came home. . .my twins. . .were gone.

"I had the miscarriage.  All you did was your job."

Again I look at Deanna and notice the PADD had slipped from
her hands, which with nothing to hold them down, began to twist
and knot and a nervous pace.

"Deanna you did your job.  These things just happen."

I want to take her now and bring her to this magical house, off
this ship and away from this.

But I can't.  Because after five years no house has been built and
we are a billion miles away from anywhere I would want to raise
my family. . .

No family.  No house. 

"I killed our only chance."

Wife.  I have a wife.  I still have a wife and I won't loose her.  I
can't loose her.

"I love you Deanna."

Yes we lost our only chance at children that night, but we still had
each other. 

"Deanna, I need you.  I'm not going anywhere and somehow, I
promise, we will work through this, together."