Regretting Decisions 


Chapter 1 

Deanna Troi sat curled up on her luxurious four poster bed, and flipped through her photo album full of images documenting all the good times she experienced while serving on the Enterprise. It amazed her to think that it had been over four years since she resigned her post from Starfleet, in pursuit of an active political career on her deteriorating home planet. Four years since she had told William Riker, her imazdi, that she had an obligation as the Daughter of the Fifth House of Betazed to return to her home and do her best to save the planet. Four years since in desperation of leaving her beloved Will, she had begged him to come with her and be her political advisor, her friend, and her lover. She had told him she could not imagine her life without him. He had sadly told her he could not survive life anywhere other then within the stars.

She often wondered if he ever regretted that decision.

* * * *

Captain William Riker sat proudly in his captain痴 chair, on his newly appointed ship the U.S.S. Excite. This was his first day, on his new ship, in his new position. A position he had dreamed of attaining since his boyhood. He was undoubtedly thrilled at the chance of being Captain, however, he was still lacking personal fulfillment, that made a life happy.

His mind inadvertently wandered to Deanna. He had yet to remember a time since she had exited his life, that he ever achieved the complete happiness and fulfillment that he so desired.

He often wondered if she missed him.

* * * *

Deanna reluctantly dragged herself out of the comforts of her bed and headed towards her closet. Today was the day she had promised Gavin Wettwo, a young prince from a wealthy neighboring planet, whether she would accept his marriage proposal or not. His proposal had many promising perks for the people of Betazed, including extensive funds to rebuild their war torn city and an alliance with a planet who had one of the most impressive militaries in the galaxy. However it had many drawbacks as well, like lacking love, the basis of a healthy marriage.

She felt her dark eyes being drawn back to her photo album that still laid open on her bed. Back to the pictures of her and Will.

鼎an nobody ever fill his shoes? She wondered.

* * * *

Will knew that it was his responsibility as the new captain that once he got off official duty that he ought to go on unofficial duty. Unofficial duty being mingling with and generally getting to know his new crew, in the Excite痴 version of the Ten-Forward Lounge. However, tonight he just couldn稚 bring himself to go.

Upon entering his quarters, Will immediately crossed his living room and went straight for his communicator mounted on his bedroom wall, an off-work ritual he had began the day Deanna had left the Enterprise,

鼎omputer, please connect me with Deanna Troi.

The computer, being programmed of Deanna number ahead of time, easily dialed the access code to Deanna痴 home on Betazed. The crackling connection noise began to come through on his speakers.

As Will heard this noise, he felt the familiar knot began to form in his stomach and his throat go dry. 泥amn, he thought to himself angrily, 兎veryday for four years I have attempted to make this call. And everyday, for four years, I致e chickened out before she has ever answered.

Outloud he croaked, 鼎omputer, hang - up.

的nvalid Command.

展HAT. Riker said, dread thick through his voice

The computer repeated, 的nvalid entry.

哲ewer ship . . .newer commands, dummy. Will thought to himself. He quickly grabbed the reference manual and flipped through it.

展ill, is that you?

泥amn, he thought, 鍍o late.

Chapter 2

滴i Deanna, Will said, beads of sweat running down his face, 妬t sure has been a while.

鉄tupid, he thought miserably to himself, 渡ice come on line.

添eah it has. Deanna said with a plastered grin on her face. She began to clench her hands in a anxious fashion. 展hat痴 up?

哲ot much, what痴 up with you? Will asked nervously, his heart pounding harder and faster the more he looked at her.

展ill, are you okay? You heart is racing Deanna asked, her dark eyes flooded with concern.

Will shut his eyes to gather himself, and suddenly became aware of a small probing sensation in the back of his head. 泥on稚 you think your being awfully presumptuous, Dee. I haven稚 spoken to you in four years and you automatically assume you have a right to pick at my brain.

The sensation came to abrupt stop, 展ell EXCUSE ME. I assumed something was wrong with you by your accelerated heartbeat and your excessiveperspiration. I do have a right to worry, don稚 I.

Will felt a flush creep up into his neck, 哲o, you don稚 have a right to worry. You gave that right up four years ago, when you chose Betazed over me.

Deanna bit her lip, tears stinging her eyes, 的知 sorry about the probing, it won稚 happen again. However, need I remind you that you called me, so what do you want?

滴ow in the hell did I get this off on such the wrong foot? Will thought miserably, 的知 sitting here fighting with the only woman I have ever truly loved.

的 just missed you and wanted to see how you were, that痴 all. Will gave her one of his famous Riker grins, 田an we call a truths?

The scowl on Deanna痴 face made him gulp nervously, 的 can稚 believe in four years you still blame me for the breakdown of our relationship. I can稚 believe you still blame me for coming back to defend my home.

泥on稚 you regret not staying with me on the Enterprise?

的 regret you didn稚 have the courtesy or the love to follow me. Will, I turned down numerous promotions, so that I could stay on the Enterprise with you. I just assumed that when I was needed to be somewhere, you would do the same for me. The tears were freely falling now from her eyes. 的t doesn稚 matter anymore, I致e gotten engaged and will be married in a week.

Will immediately grabbed his chest, as he envisioned his heart breaking at those fateful uttered words. His mind wandered to the thought of another man laying next to his imazdi, loving his imazdi, and he felt his stomach turn sour.

溺arried, to who?

She shook her head violently, 妬t doesn稚 matter Will. We were over a long time ago.

典O WHO he screamed, his hand waving wildly in the air above his head, 的 have a right to know who you feel would make a better husband then me.

Deanna sighed, as she reached over to off button her communicator, 哲o Will, you don稚. She quickly flipped off the communication before he could respond.

Chapter 3 

Will Riker sat in his cabin, on his bed, in the dark, in a stunned silence.

展hy, why is she marrying someone else? was the question that ran rampant in his mind.

<<Knock Knock>> came the rapping sound from his front door.

敵o Away

<<Knock Knock>>

Reluctantly Will pulled himself from his sitting position and crossed his quaters to the door.

展ho is it?

鉄ir, it痴 me Commander Detrix. Sir, you are being hailed by the Enterprise on a personal frequency. Would you like me to forward the message to your room.

A groan escaped Will痴 lips. The last thing he wanted to do was make any more communications with anybody this evening, however, he didn稚 feel like alienating what little friends he had either.

敵o ahead and send them through.

He heard the retreating footsteps of his first officer and then the image of Beverly Crusher appeared.

滴i Will. greeted Beverly.

Will took one look at the petite doctor and knew instantaneously why she had called, 泥oc I already know. I talked to Deanna earlier today.

Beverly gave Will a weak smile and diverted her eyes from his, 的 know you know . . .that痴 not why I am contacting you.

Will pulled a chair away from his kitchen table to his viewscreen and sat down, 徹kay Doc, you have my attention now. Why did you call?

Beverly痴 small body fidgeted nervously in her chair, 展ill, Deanna has given an open invitation to anybody from Starfleet to attended her wedding. However, she wanted me to call and ask you, as a friend, to please not come.

Will eyes widened and his body began to shake in his chair, 鉄he doesn稚 want me to be there. ME?

展ill, Beverly said, concern running thick in her voice, 土ou don稚 want to be there.

Will got up from his chair and pushed it away. 添es I do, he said defiantly, as he began to pace across the room. 展hy doesn稚 she want me there?

展ill I don稚 know for sure. It痴 been a good four years since me and Deanna have sat down for girl talk.

Will stopped his pacing and narrowed his eyes accusingly, 添ou may not know for sure, but it痴 obvious you have a hunch, so spill it.

展ill, I can稚.

釘everly please. Deanna is about to marry a guy in two weeks and has banned me from the wedding. I think I know why she did this, but I need to hear somebody else say it. he searched her face for any kind of weakening, 釘everly I need to know if I am way off on left base to assume she still loves me.


撤lease... he begged

的 . .I don稚 necessarily think you are off left base to think she may still hold feelings for you, but I do think you have to realize that you hurt her pretty bad. I think you have to realize that a lot of bad blood has passed between you both.

鄭nd then what Beverly, what can I do?

A smile spread across the red-head face, 泥uh Will! You have two weeks to win her back.

Chapter 4

 鼎ommander Detrix, I would like to see you in my ready room before I relieve you of duty. Will Riker announced on his way onto the bridge of the Excite.

添es Sir. Commander Detrix said aloud, silently the Betazed commander noted how energized his Captain had become over night.

The two men crossed the bridge and headed to the side door.

鼎aptain, it seems you got a good nights sleep? Detrix asked, fishing for Riker to reveal what was currently on his mind.

Will Riker smiled as he took his seat at the head of the large oblong table, 鄭ctually Commander I got no sleep, but I appreciate the compliment no less.

He motioned for the boyish looking commander to take his seat next to him, 鼎ommander, before we begin I want to thank you for being polite enough not to read my mind. I rarely have come across a full telepathic betazed who maintained enough respect for earthlings, by not invading the thoughts of each one that may come across their path

Detrix met Will eye to eye, 的 don稚 feel that it痴 honest of me to read my captain痴 mind when he can稚 read mine.

Riker nodded, noting how much respect the boy earned from him by making that comment, 的 would however like you read my mind now.

摘xcuse me? Detrix asked, shocked.

Will reached over and grabbed the boys hand, 典o make a long story stort, I知 going to ask you to help me do something that goes against what Starfleet would want me to do. I am going to ask you to help me bend a couple of rules.


的 could tell you . . .but I don稚 think you would fully understand how important this is. Please read my mind. Will begged.

Detrix hesitated, 鄭re you sure?


Detrix nodded and mentally began tearing down the walls he had formed around his telepathic senses. He then eased his mind to Will, to begin his journey into the mind of William Riker.

While Detrix explored, Will sat in his chair. He silently prayed that Detrix would understand, and help him. He prayed Detrix would be able to recognize that he needed to stop this wedding . . .at all cost.

After about five minutes, Commander Detrix cleared his throat, 展ow. I had no idea that Chancellor Troi was your imazdi.

展ell . . .Deanna and I are kind of at odds right now.

添es, I know.

添es you probably do. Will you help me?

Chapter 5

泥eanna, some help would be nice. Lwaxana Troi huffed, as she ran flittering around her daughers room, 的 mean it is YOUR wedding.

泥id you just say something mother? Deanna asked distractedly.

Lwaxana Troi walked over to the chair where her daughter was sitting and brought her face inches away from Deanna, 泥ear, I said I would like some HELP.

鉄orry, I am a little preoccupied, today.

添es, and he痴 not worth it so get un-preoccupied. Lwaxana ordered.

Deanna shrunk further into the over sized sweater she was wearing, as if she was trying to hide from her mother痴 stinging words, 添ou used to want us together.

添es I did. However, that was before you became Chancellor Troi and he remained Commander Will. That was before he chose to remain on the Enterprise and let you come back alone.

滴e is a Captain, Mother. Deanna defended.

展ell pin a rose on his nose. I don稚 care, if he truly loved you he would have come back with you. This was you destiny and he should be by your side to fulfill it. Lwaxana gave her the look that silently said that was all she was going to discuss on the subject of Will Riker.

* * * *

展ell, Will asked, staring deeply into the violet eyes of his first officer, 努ill you help me, help me win back the love of my imazdi.

Detrix shifted uncomfortably under his Captain痴 gaze, 哲ormally the answer would be yes, without thinking twice. However, this wedding means so much to the people of Betazed.

泥amn it, Will struck the table in front of him with a fierce blow, 的 thought your people痴 goal was to preserve the imazdi relationship.

鼎hancellor Troi痴 marriage to prince Gavin will bring forth an alliance of the strong and the weak, Betazed being the weak. It will bring the people of Betazed wealth and safety beyond our wildest hopes and dreams. Detrix looked at Will, 添ou are asking to much of me.

Will covered his face with his hands, 的sn稚 Betazed being a little unfair to Deanna? Doesn稚 she have the right to marry for love? Compared to marrying for the safety of her planet? He removed his hands from his face, and looked hard at Detrix, 泥eanna doesn稚 arrange your marriages for her benefit, why does she have to have an arranged marriage for your benefit?

Detrix eyes shifted away from Will and focused on the window beside him, 的 will not try to stop you, however, I will not help you. he focused back on Will, 殿m I relieved from duty, Captain?

添es Commander, Will sadly nodded, 鍍hat will be all.

Chapter 6

William Riker stood in the main engine room of the Excite, and stared long and hard at the ship痴 engine. Would he be able to pull of this scam, he wondered, without getting caught? He slowly made his over to the ships main controller.

擢ive . . .four . . .three . . .two . . .one. he muttered under his breath.

Quickly he grabbed his blaster and fired at the engine痴 coolant mechanism, scattering the mechanism into little pieces. He then dropped his blaster onto the floor.

徹h no, look what my clumsiness done now. he said innocently to the group of engineers gathering to see what happened.

鼎aptain, what did you do? asked his Chief Engineer M痴kea Dktle, who came running out from underneath the counsel she had been repairing.

Will looked innocently at his Chief Engineer, 的 came down her to see what was going on, and I was looking at the engine, and then BAM, my blaster fell out of its holster, hit the floor, misfired . . and now we have the problem we have now.

He anxiously looked around his crew to see if anybody would dare contradict his story. No one spoke up.

鼎aptain this is not good. Without the coolant the engine will overheat in a matter of hours. The excess heat will likely cause the engine to die out and we will be stranded.

Will nodded, 的f I could get us docked at a local planet, say Betazed, could you find the parts to fix it?

添es of course.

天ery good. I will contact the Betazed authorities immediately of our unscheduled stop. he swiftly turned his back and headed out the door before the crew could see the smile that was spreading across his face.

* * * *

鼎hancellor Troi, there is a Starfleet ship hailing us with an emergency signal.

徹n screen.

William Riker痴 face popped up on the screen and Deanna felt her heart stop in her chest.

鼎hancellor, our ship痴 coolant system has failed and within two hours are ship with be rendered dead. I have contacted you to make a formal request to have permission to dock and make all necessary repairs. Will said in his proper starfleet etiquette voice.

展ill this isn稚 funny. Deanna shot back, raising her head in a defiant fashion, 的 don稚 want you here.

Will痴 insides felt like he had been socked in the gut by her hateful words, but outside he maintained his posture, 鼎hancellor, if you want, you may talk to my chief engineer or my first officer to confirm everything I have told you, but I should hope that you can put personal matter aside and be able to communicate on a professional level. Chancellor . . . Deanna, you are wasting my ship痴 time. If you are going to deny us docking rights, please do so now, so that I may hail another planet before it is to late.

Deanna looked at him, her eyes blazing with fury, 添ou will not ruin my wedding.

泥eanna the sooner you let me down there, the sooner my ship may be fixed and my crew and I will be off your planet. Hell, we may be fixed and gone before your little farce of a wedding even takes place.


泥o I have your permission?

Deanna growled, 添es, you may land.

典hanks, Excite out.

* * * *

Deanna reached over to her intercom, 纏elda, I need to be notified twenty minutes before the Excite is to land. I believe it is my diplomatic duty to greet the members of the ship.

添es ma知 her assistant replied

殿nd also break into my honeymoon trunk and bring me that little blue strappy dress.

Chapter 7

鼎aptain, we will be arriving on the Betazed in twenty minutes. Detrix said, contempt running through his voice.

典hank you Commander. Will said, 努ould you terribly mind if I turn the bridge over to you, while I go freshen up?

泥oes it matter what I think? Detrix asked.

擢rankly Detrix, no. and with that Will happily retreated to his cabin.

* * * *

Zelda gave a low whistle, 溺y my you look H-O-T.

Deanna smiled as she did circles in front of the full length mirror Zelda had brought into her office. The spaghetti strap tight on top flare bottom dress did do justice to her body, accenting all the positives, but what seemed so right to wear earlier suddenly seemed so very wrong.

典his is stupid, I don稚 know what I was thinking. . . where is my business suit. Deanna asked.

的t in the other room, but ma知 the ship will be here in fifteen minutes. If you want to meet him, you have to leave right now.

徹h what the hell, let痴 go. Deanna said, and grabbed Zelda by the arm and ran out the door.

* * * *

鉄ir, we are here, and there seems to be a group of diplomats waiting to greet us. Detrix called from the hallway door outside Riker痴 cabin.

的s Deanna there? Will called from the batroom, where he was making last minute touches on his hair.

鉄ir , I don稚 want to be involved.

The cabin doors slid open and Will peeked his head out, 的 am not asking you to go out there and kidnap her, I am just asking . . . no ordering you to tell me if she is out there.

鉄he is.

Will smiled, 敵ood.

* * * *

Deanna stood outside the Excite, systematically greeting each and every crew member that got of the Excite. She took a quick glance towards the ships door, but had yet to see Will.

展hich one is he? Zelda hissed in her ear.

Deanna gave a condensdening look to her mousy looking assistant, wondering if she shouldn稚 had confided in her about the past she and Will shared, 滴e hasn稚 been out yet, and frankly I don稚 care if he comes out at all.

添eah, sure. Zelda muttered.

Deanna shot her a look of death, and was about to verbally berate her, when she suddenly felt the hair on her arm perk up, 滴e痴 coming.

And sure enough the final two people to exit out of Excite doors were William Riker and his First Officer.

Will looked at Detrix, the hair on his arm also being to rise, 的 forgot how intoxicating it can be to be so near her.

Detrix grinned, despite the love-hate feeling he had towards his Captain, 典he Imazdi relationship is always the best thing and the worst thing that can ever happen to a man.

Deanna grabbed on to Zelda痴 shoulders, 的 don稚 know if I can handle this . . .face-to-face.

Zelda eyed her boss suspiciously, 笛ust remember why you hate him.

泥eep breath Riker. Will mentally coached himself.

鼎aptain Riker on behalf. Deanna started, in her routine welcoming speech.

Will eyed her up and down, fully ignoring the routine speech, choosing to feast on the site of his beautiful imazdi instead. Her long legs that went on forever, her tiny waist, her chest, the thick dark hair, the eyes.

的 welcome you. Deanna finished, holding out her hand for the typical handshake.

Will took the hand, but instead of shaking it, used it as a tool to pull Deanna into an embrace. He tilted her head up, looked deeply into her eyes, and placed his mouth directly on hers for a long, deep, lingering kiss.

Chapter 8

Deanna broke away from the kiss with a dazed look on her face, 展ill . . you shouldn稚 have done that.

Will smiled, 展hy? Didn稚 you like it.

Deanna felt herself shaking her head yes, even though her mind was trying to convince her to say no.

Will mood brighten a hundred percent by her Freudian slip, 敵ood, because we have wasted to much time as it is. He grabbed to embrace her again, but she stepped back.

展ill, I am engaged.

釘ut Dee you don稚 love him? I know you don稚.

展ill, Dee looked around to the faces of the curious crowd of Betazoid and Starfleet crew around her, 鼎an we go somewhere a little more private.

添our pad or mine?

* * * *

Deanna inquisitively looked around her, as she and Will walked aboard the Excite. She had convinced herself during her four year starship hiatus that she did not miss being aboard a ship, however she was starting to think that through again.

徹h Will, she痴 beautiful. Deanna gushed.

Will peered down at his imazdi, her kind words filling him with pride, 哲ot quite as flashy as the Enterprise, but not a bad, huh?

徹h Will, your to modest, Deanna continually praised, as she ran her hand up and down the wall of the ship.

添es, well she could be both of ours. Will hinted, trying to catch Deanna痴 eye.

Deanna avoided his attempts, choosing to marvel at the latest technology in replicators instead. 添es you truly deserve this Will, I am very happy for you.

Exasperated, Will grabbed her shoulders and forcing her to look at him, 泥eanna, I love. I致e loved you from the first moment I saw you here on Betazed, and I haven稚 stopped since. Please don稚 force me out of your life again. Please.

So conflicted with emotion, Deanna covered her face with her hands, as to shield herself from her pain, 展ill, what are you saying. Are you saying you want me to give up everything I have worked for, so I can run away with you on your ship? Or are you saying you want me to break my engagement and we will have a long . . .long distance relationship. Gratifying my own needs in sacrifice of my people痴 well being? Or are you saying you are willing to stay here with me, and be at my side. She raised her eyes hopefully at that last statement, 的f I had your expertise at my side I would not need Gavin痴 help.

This time it was Will痴 turn to step back, 泥ee I haven稚 got that far yet. My goal was to get to you before your wedding, and here I am.

Deanna shook her head sadly, 典hat痴 not quite convincing enough for me to call off my wedding Captain.

Chapter 9

鼎aptain, if I may be so blunt, she gave you the opportunity you wanted. All you had to do was agree to stay here with her and she would have called off the wedding. Detrix took a swig of his betazed ale, 鉄he gave you more of a chance then I would have given you.

Will gave his first officer a dirty look, 添eah, thanks. However, you must not forget she was not willing to make any compromises for us either.

Detrix motioned the bartender for another round of drinks, 鉄ir, permission to speak frankly.

Will took a quick shot of Betazed痴 version of Tequila, and gasped, 滴aven稚 you been already?

鉄ir, you left her at the altar for your career, why should she want to leave her career to be at the altar for you. If she had left you at the altar on Risa, would you be willing to make any sacrifices for her?

Will stared long and hard into the shot glass before him, intoxication becoming apparent in his voice, 鉄he wants me to give up my ship. Me being a Captain is the only dream my father and I shared. It is the whole basis of our shaky relationship. This is the only time he has been proud of me. How am I suppose to give that up

鄭nd Deanna, what kind of common ground do you think her and her mother share? How proud of mother do you think Lwaxana is, having her daughter being the only girl of Betazed royalty to ever move up into the position of Chancellor? Detrix asked.

泥etrix, I hate you for thinking so much for the both of us Will said sarcastically with a groan.

典hat痴 my job.

* * * *

纏elda Deanna sniffed, 田an you cancel all my appointments for today.

Zelda handed her boss a handful of tissue, 鄭lready done.

Deanna smiled weakly up to her assistant, 典hanks.

泥o you still love him? Zelda asked

Deanna痴 head bobbed up and down, 的知 mad about him.

典hen why don稚 you just go with him?

徹h yeah, and what about Betazed? Deanna asked.

Zelda rolled her eyes, 展hat about Betazed, Deanna? We survived before you took over, we can survive after you leave.

Deanna sniffed again 敵reat, thanks for making me feel so important.

Zelda gave her boss a hug, 添ou致e done great work, and made personal sacrifices above and beyond what was asked. I just want you to know that because of all that, if you want to hang it up, you can.

Deanna looked at her distractedly 典hanks. she mumbled.

* * * *

Will sat alone, outside on a bench in front of the Betazed embassy, sadly watching the chairs and tables being set up for Deanna and Gavins wedding. He could not believe that it had been two weeks since he had the falling out with Deanna onboard the Excite. Two weeks since he had last spoken with her.

After the night at the bar with his first officer Detrix, he had realized that his life could not progress without Deanna, and had gone back to his ship with full intentions to call Deanna and say whatever it took to win her back. Even that he would give up his ship if she would become a permanent fixture in this life. However, to his misfortune, when he had arrived to his room there was a message waiting for him, from Deanna.

The message had basically said she was sorry that she had come on his ship praising it痴 beauty and then turning around and asking him to leave it. She further said she had decided to marry Gavin, whether he had a change of heart or not, because it benefited the most amount of people. And finally, to his dread, she had said good-bye, good-bye to their relationship, friendship, and their love.

Now, little under two weeks since that fateful communication he sat alone, a crushed and broken man, watching the set-up for the wedding that should have been his.

溺ind if I sit down.

Without looking up with absently nodded his head.

典hanks. Looks like it is going to be a nice wedding, huh?

Will rolled his eyes, 添eah, I guess if you like weddings.

展ill your not very encouraging.

Will turned to the person who had sat next to him, and gasped in disbelief, 泥ee!

The woman, with the green baseball hat and the black sunglasses, held her index finger up to her lips, 鼎aptain, how fast can you get your ship off this planet.

Eyes still wide from disbelief, Will responded, 典wenty-minutes, why?

徹h . . .well in thirty five minutes Gavin is going to lift up his brides veil, and find an eager Zelda waiting for her kiss.

Will bit his lip to hold back a laugh, 鄭re you sure you want to leave, what will Gavin say? Do?

Deanna shrugged her shoulders, letting an evil grin spread across her face, 典he contract I signed promised the Chancellor of Betazed to Gavin and . . .due to a small private ceremony earlier today . . . Zelda is the Chancellor.

釘ut Riker started, feeling guilty that Deanna was going to give up her dreams for him, again.

Deanna stopped him short by laying her lips squarely on his lips. Once the kiss was finally broken, she let her lips wander to ear, 的f you are really feeling guilty, you can appoint me a nice cushy position as ship痴 counselor. she whispered.

Will smiled, enjoying the closeness of her body next to his, 的 think that can be arranged . . .if you have the right qualifications.

徹h yes Captain, Deanna said arching her eyebrow, 的 have ALL the right qualifications.