Out In The Open

By  Rachel


“Well, when do you think they are going to fess up?” Beverly playfully nudged Jean-Luc’s arms, “Something is up with those two and it is driving me absolutely batty that she hasn’t even offered just the slightest juicy tidbit.”

Jean-Luc Picard, who had been carefully stirring his drink, thinking about Anya and the trials of having another lost love, looked up in annoyance, “Excuse me?”

“Ughhhhh! Men.” Beverly groaned dramatically, rolling her eyes to the ceiling. “The obvious handholding at the Briar Patch. . the look.”

“Dr. Crusher. . “

“Bevery.” The petite doctor waggled her fingers, “Dr. Crusher is left in the sickbay, remember.”

“Right, sorry Beverly. But really, I think if something has formed between the Counselor and the Commander then it should stay between the Counselor and Commander. This is a federation ship, not the dating game.”

“Sour puss.” Beverly shook her head, “I believe if the shoe was on the other foot you wouldn’t feel that way.”

Noticing a look pass between both the Captain and Beverly, a look much like the look Deanna and Will had been giving each other since the very first day Will stepped on the ship, Geordi LaForge, the astute silent observer of everything and anything around him cleared his throat, “Well I think whatever is going on between the Commander and Counselor Troi is fantastic at any rate, and I stand behind what ever they decide one-hundred percent.” He commented quietly, a wistfuly expression playing across his face, “Lord knows its been a hellish time trying to watch those two deny any feelings for each other. They could be so frustrating.” He looked pointedly at the two bickering, wondering why they couldn’t learn from Will and Deanna

“Exactly.” Beverly leaned across the table and slapped Geordi on the back in appreciation, “Geordi, you have got to be the most intuitive man on this ship.”********

“Will!.” Deanna jumped as two strong arms came from behind her and enveloped her in a strong hug, pulling her away from the shower stream and closer to the warm body behind her. A warm friendly body.

“Maybe Will, maybe not.” Will Riker mumbled playfully, burying his head in her wet hair, and nuzzling her neck, “Maybe just some stranger, trying to get lucky.”

“Well geez for my sake I hope it’s a stranger, because I’d really hate to have to get into a fight with my Imzadi this early into the relationship.” Deanna commented rigidly, despite the erotic feeling of Will’s wet beard on her neck.

This resulted in a groan from Will, and Deanna felt the man reluctantly pull away, “Dee, I can’t stay away.” His hands traveled to her shoulders where he began to knead at the small worry knots forming in her back, “I won’t stay away. Ever.”

She silently smiled to herself liking the dedication he was exhibiting and turned to meet his gaze. “I don’t want you to stay away I just want you to take it slow. I know how you rush headfirst into everything. I mean what would crewmembers think if a red alert sounded, and we both ran out of my quarters with a wet head.”

“Lucky guy.” Will grinned, his boyish charm showing through his macho exterior.

Deanna faltered at the sight of his grin, and wrapped her arms around his neck, “Your incorrigible.”************

“Well here’s the couple of the hour now.” Worf commented gruffly.

The table of current senior crew and Worf purposely turned their heads to watch their two friends enter the Ten-Forward lounge, hand in hand.*************

“Did you ever feel like your being watched.” Deanna whispered, a small blush creeping into her cheeks.

Will tightened his grip around her hand, “You have nothing to be nervous about. If anything they’re wondering how much I had to pay you to agree to come with me tonight”

“Will aren’t you a little apprehensive about making this public knowledge. This is the first time we’ve made our relationship open to everyone, and its making me feel. . .well frankly, I feel like my mother, airing my personal life for the whole world to know.” Deanna whispered.

Will nodded his head knowingly, and purposefully pulled her into his arms. With the grace of a dancer, he dipped a very surprised Deanna backwards, and placed a long sensual kiss on her gasping lips.

Murmurs of surprise and delight erupted in the Ten-Forward lounge, followed by a standing ovation, lead by a very ecstatic Beverly Crusher.

Deanna came up from the kiss, unsure if she wanted to murder Will or ask for an encore.

Will shrugged, “You were apprehensive about letting people know, I just figured I’d help you out by getting it out in the open once and for all.”

Deanna shook her head, “Has the Briar Patch gone to your head?”

Will smiled and playfully patted her on the hand, he knew he would be paying for that stunt later.*************

“So,” Beverly leaned over the table, “got anything interesting to tell us?”

Picard shook his head, “Dr. Crusher!”

Will smiled conspicuously, “Nope, you got anything to tell us?”

Beverly groaned and sat back down, “Men!”

Deanna smiled apologetically, and reached her hand over the table to sympathetically pat her friends hand, she knew she would be paying later for Will’s little stunt.*************

“Beverly I don’t mean to be rude or anything, but will you be retiring to your cabin anytime soon?” Will asked pointedly, widening his eyes and nodding his head in pleading. Everyone else had long since headed back to their rooms, and Will had hoped for maybe a little private time with Deanna before they did the same. However, Beverly had managed to stay oblivious to his hints, and had stayed in her seat across from the two.

“Will!” Deanna kicked him under the table. Yes she had been hoping for a little private time too, however under no circumstances had she ever planned to have either one of them “kick-out” Beverly.

Beverly looked up from drink, “What. . . oh right.” She got up and walked over to Deanna. Quickly she gave the woman a hug, “Fine, I get the picture, your trading me in for something with a little more facial hair and probably a few less crying jags.”

“Beverly!?!” Deanna looked at her worriedly.

“I’m kidding.” She patted her friend on the back and next walked to Will, where she gave him a quick hug, “Work on her sense of humor.”

“Amongst other things.” Will promised solemnly.

Beverly nodded, looking at her friends adoringly, “I am so happy for you two.”*********

“I didn’t think she was ever going to leave.” Will took Deanna by the hand and lead her to one on of the windows of the Ten-forward lounge, overlooking the stars.

“I can’t believe you asked her to leave.” Deanna took his hand, sliding off the chair she followed him. “She has every right to be here, as long as she wants to. Besides, she experiencing vast vulnerability after seeing the Captain attempt another doomed long-distance relationship with one more strange beautful woman.

“Foolish man.” Will commented.

Deanna raised an eyebrow, “Really Will, you couldn’t imagine leaving a broken heart at every spaceport?”

He smiled, bringing her hand to his lips, “Not any more. Are you still angry about that little stunt?”

“With Beverly?”

He sat down on the window ledge and pulled her down next to him, facing him, “No, earlier.”

“Earlier. . .oh,” Deanna eyes began to sparkle, “you mean when you assaulted me in front of everyone of my patients.” She brought her hands to his lips and began to trace the outline with her finger, “Yes, when you pulled me to you, and I sensed what you were going to do, I was angry —but then you kissed me.” She sighed, and laid her head against the window, “and suddenly all I could think of was how to get you to keep going or get you to do it again”


“Oh yeah.” She let her hand travel from his lips to his thick dark hair, where she ran her fingers adoringly through it, relishing in its thickness “I just don’t know what I am going to do with you William Riker, my common sense tells me that we have to approach this slow and I need to keep slowing you down, that we need to give each other breathing space, and yet.” she smiled consipriatory, “and yet when you do things like you did tonight in front of everybody, pursuing our relationship openly, for the whole world to see, I begin to feel in my heart if I continue pursing this relationship at this pace I’ve set us at, I’m going to die a very frustrated woman.”

“What are you saying?” Will asked.

“I don’t know.” She sighed laying her head on his shoulder, “With you I just never know.”