Disclaimer: Paramount owns Will, Deanna, the Enterprise, and everything else
I must've had too much ale. Yeah, that had to be it. You know, after all
this time you'd think I could hold my liquor. But somehow, sitting across
from Deanna in Ten Forward on a lonely night, the mug seemed to empty faster
than before. I was knocking them back on purpose, hoping to dull my anxiety,
hoping to quell the rush of nervous butterflies in my gut.
Looking across the table at her, seeing the same lovely dark eyes that I'd
lost my soul in so many years before, I felt tongue tied. She looked so
serene, so beautiful, so perfect. Almost untouchable. But the turquoise
dress, baring a soft show of skin and shoulder, tempted my fingers...I wanted
to lean across the table and run them over her flesh, just to see if she was
Of course I'd touched her before. Intimately. But that night, it was as
though we'd just met and I felt leery of making contact; almost as though she
were a glittering statue in an art museum. Something that you loved to linger
over with your eyes, but would never dare touch with your hands.
It didn't help that she was smiling at me. Her eyes were dancing, her mouth
was pulled upwards into the most engaging grin I'd ever seen. I wanted to
crawl right under the table and up into her lap, she was so intensely
But before I could breach the space between us, I knew I needed to say the
words. I'd rehearsed them, again and again, but they refused to come out of
my mouth. My hands were shaking, and I was sweating buckets. She must've
known how I felt, and yet there she sat, calmly waiting for me to finally
come out with it.
I took her hand in mine, feeling a jolt of electric shock as our skin made
contact. And then, I cleared my throat, and closed my eyes. Before I could
chicken out entirely, I muttered, "Deanna...will you...." and then I stopped.
I opened my eyes and cleared my throat again, unable to move the words out of
my mouth. They were stuck there, and so, I withdrew my hand and reached for
the ale, gulping an entire glass in two seconds. Before I tried again, I
motioned for Guinan to bring a re-fill, and bless her heart, she brought me
I guzzled them greedily, hoping to give myself the courage I needed, and all
the while, Deanna sat there, smiling at me; a knowing look in her eyes. She
said nothing, just watched and waited, somehow knowing that if she were to
speak that I would let it go, allow the conversation to drift into other
I was grateful for her patience. As I drank, I allowed my eyes to run across
the lines of her face, the length of dark black curl hanging down across her
breasts, and then to the glittering stone on her left hand. My eyes fell to
the circle of gold beneath it, and I inwardly smiled as I continued to gather
the guts to say what I needed to say.
Finally, I set the mug down, wiped my mouth on a napkin, and leaned closer to
my wife, taking her small hand in my own once again. Looking into her eyes,
I whispered, "Deanna...will you...have my child?"
Her eyebrows lifted, and her rosebud mouth fell gently open, surprise
lighting her eyes; flushing her cheeks with sudden color.
"Will..." she began, only to stop once the tears began to fill her eyes.
We hadn't discussed children yet. We'd only been married for six months. But
we were way past the age that most couples where when they started a family,
and we'd put our lives on hold for far too long already.
"Imzadi...?" I whispered, squeezing her hand, pulling it to my lips, kissing
"I....oh Will...." she said, wiping the tears away, while grinning at me
through the tracks they made down her cheeks.
"I take it, you like the idea?"
"You could certainly say that."
I smiled at her, feeling as though my heart would beat out of my chest. And
then I said, "Want to go back to our quarters and get started?" I wriggled
an eyebrow at her, half-teasing, half-dead serious, and she giggled.
"You just want to get me into bed, Commander."
"Well, I certainly wouldn't mind, Counselor."
Her eyes filled again, moved towards the table, and then flew back to my
"Will...I think I should tell you something before we go..."
"Well...I actually brought you here tonight because I had some news to share
with you. And, after I tell you, I don't think we'll need to go to our
Alarm bells rang briefly in the back of my head at her words, and by the
sudden stillness of her face I knew that it was something serious.
"Deanna...what's wrong? Has something happened? Are you okay?"
She nodded. "I'm fine, Will. More than fine. In fact...I'm pregnant. We're
going to have a baby, Imzadi." Her eyes were shining so brightly I felt
nearly blinded by them, and my heart began a thunderous racing in my heart.
"Oh my God! Are you...serious? We're really going to have a baby?"
"Yes. Beverly says that I'm about two months along...."
"I can't believe this. I mean, I was trying to gear myself up for this night,
to ask you if you wanted to have a baby. I never thought..."
"Neither did I. Apparently, our inhibitors were not up to spec. Think we
should have Geordi take a look at them?"
I chuckled, imagining going into Engineering in the morning, holding two
inhibitors in my hand and handing them to Geordi. He'd have a hell of a
story to spread around the ship. "Not a bad idea. But, I think Bev's
probably the one we should have take a look...otherwise, this little guy is
going to have more brothers and sisters than he'll know what to do with."
We stared at one another for long minutes, imagining the little person who
had suddenly come into our lives. Then we moved around the table quickly, and
went into each others' arms. I held her tightly, my hand gently wandering to
"So, do you think that they malfunctioned....or did we both secretly want
this to happen?"
"Mmm...I don't know. I have to admit, since we got married I became more
forgetful about updating mine. Plus, that usually happens when you and I have
had too much to drink."
"I think you're right. So, two months. It must've been the night of the
Captain's birthday party. I remember Guinan brought out some Tarkelian ale,
and you and I spent alot of time draining the keg."
She giggled, shaking gently in my arms."I remember. Gods, I thought I'd never
drag you away from that thing! I had to resort to my most inventive seduction
techniques to get you away from the party and into our bed."
"I remember....." Hell, I'd never forget. It had been the most wild, loving,
erotic night we'd ever spent together. No wonder we'd gotten caught off
"Will...are you happy about the baby?"
"Are you kidding? I was the one who was going to practically beg on hand and
knee for you to consider the idea. Honey, I'm thrilled. I love you so much
and I'm going to love this baby like crazy."
We hugged for a long time, until I felt the tap of a finger on my back. It
"So...I take it you two are celebrating the good news?"
"Well, it's not every day I find out I'm going to be a father."
Bev hugged me, then Deanna, her smile lighting up the entire room. "And high
time too, Commander. So tell me...after all this time, what made you two
finally decide to go for it?"
Deanna and I looked at each other sheepishly. "Well, it wasn't exactly
"Ah, the old forgetting to update the inhibitors thing, right?"
Deanna nodded. "We think so. Let's just say that since our wedding we
haven't exactly been keeping track..."
"Well, I am so happy for you guys! I can't wait to see this little girl.
She's going to be gorgeous, you know."
"Only if she looks like her Mother."
They both smiled at me, and then Deanna and Bev shared a hug, both welling up
with tears. "I'm going to go now and let you two celebrate. But, Deanna, I
want you to stop by sickbay tomorrow morning. I want to give you a full check
"I'll be there."
Beve nodded, hugged us again, and then drifted off towards the Captain,
glowing so brightly you'd've thought the baby was hers.
"So, do you still want to go back to our quarters, Mrs. Riker?"
"Well, I don't suppose there's any need to now, since the job's already been
done. However, I think that I'd like to anyway....now that I'm pregnant
there's nothing to stop us from making love with or without inhibitors."
My body reacted instinctively to her words, and to the lusty look in her
I swept her into my arms again for a kiss, and then, I took her back to our
quarters and proceeded to show her just how happy I was about the baby.
Eight months later, I stood at her bedside in sickbay, watching her sleep.
Her breath ruffled our baby's fine hair as she slept, and I moved my hand to
stroke the tiny head, awed beyond reason at the sight of my daughter lying on
her Mother's breast.
She was beautiful. I know everyone says that, but she was. Her eyes were the
same deep, olive black as Deannas', and the tiny whips of hair were dark as
well. She had my nose, poor thing, but she was the knockout of the century.
You should see her now. Twenty-one years old and brilliant. Get this---she
wants to be a starship Captain like her Dad. It's funny, she looks almost
exactly like Deanna, but she's all Riker beneath the surface. I'm so proud
of her, I feel like my heart will burst every single time I look at her.
Sitting across from a beautiful woman in a starlit lounge on Starbase 211, I
lift a glass of ale, toasting her. "You look lovely tonight, Elizabeth."
Her eyes twinkle above her glass, and she smiles at me. "Thanks, Dad."
"So, tomorrow's the big day?"
"Yes....I'm going to the Academy. Mom's going with me, just to make sure I
get there all right. You know how she worries."
"I do. And I'm glad you're not going alone, baby."
Her dark curls shimmer as she shakes her head, and I'm reminded strongly of
her Mother. "Dad! I'm not a baby. I'm going into the Fleet, just like you
did. I'm a grown woman. I can take care of myself."
"Never doubted it. After all, you take after the old man."
She grins at that, her smile so like my own it's startling.
As we finish our dinner, the band strikes up a gentle, swelling melody, and I
rise, reaching for her hand."Shall we?"
"You got it." Elisabeth loves jazz, I taught her well.
I take her into my arms and spin her around the dance floor, feeling the tiny
weight of her body fill my arms.
"Liz...I'm going to miss you."
"Oh Daddy..." she says nothing more, but holds on tight, and I know that
she's going to miss me too.
I feel my heart turn over, thinking of her being so far away, and tears
briefly fill my eyes. And then I think of that night, when I watched her
Mother so intently from across the table, wanting to know if she wanted to
have a baby as much as I did. I remember the feel of Deanna's words as she
told me the news, and the joy of knowing that Elizabeth was beginning to grow
inside of her.
I dance with my girl until midnight, and then take her to her room. After
she changes and flops into bed, I come in and watch her lying there, drifting
off to sleep with her black curls spread across the pillow. And I feel all
over again the amazement that came at the moment I learned of her existence.
I have a daughter. And she's everything I ever could have wanted.
Sneaking into our room, I try not to wake Deanna. She knew Liz and I needed
a few hours alone, and so stayed behind, probably crying in bed, thinking of
tomorrow's goodbye. Undressing, I sneak beneath the covers with her, curling
my body around the sweet, smooth softness of her curves.
"Just got in."
"Great. Excited about tomorrow."
"How are you?"
"I don't know. Sad. Happy. Excited for her. Everything."
We snuggle, and she turns to kiss me. We continue to kiss, and then, the
kiss leads to more...I hold her, fondle her, evelope and caress her, and
then, I lay above her, and look down at her face.
"Would you..." Oh God. It's happening again. The same question, the same
fear, and the same urgent need.
"Would I what?"
"Would you consider giving Liz a brother or sister?" There. I said it. It
"Gods, you're serious, aren't you?"
"I didn't know I wanted this until I came home and saw you laying here. Liz
will be gone...I'm going to miss her so much. And, I don't know. I guess the
idea of starting all over again appeals to me."
"You never cease to amaze me, Admiral Riker."
"So what do you say, Imzadi?"
Her face suffuses with light, and a tiny, knowing smile crosses her face.
"I'd say that once again, you're too late."
She smiles at me, pulling me close, kissing me deeply. "I said, you're too
late. I was going to wait until tomorrow, to tell you and Liz at the same
time. But Will, I'm pregnant again."
"Are you happy about the baby Will?"
"How could I not be?"
Stunned, but secretly thrilled, I touch her body, and begin to move within
"Can we still do this, Mrs. Riker?"
"I don't think the baby will mind." And then she pulls me down further, and
we begin the same silken, perfect rhythm that once brought Liz into our lives
and will soon bring us a new child.