Today, Bee prompts us to explore “adore/despise“– the contrasts in love. Meanwhile, Linda‘s prompt is “opposite in emotion”. You can join either event, anytime, or just come to read more, by clicking the links.
I’ve written a couple of very serious essay posts here, this month, and I’m likely to do that again before the month is over. But for today, my mind gave me –
umm, cotton candy. Braided pink and blue. Swirled together, and heated to spun-sugar sweetness with a hint of tart. Trip, T’Pol, Harry, and Sally.
I behaved myself, and only edited a tiny bit, so I wouldn’t be too twitchy posting it. It’s longer than usual, but then, it’s a double-feature. And folks seemed to enjoy Seeking a Peaceful Tide, so…
Disclaimer: T’Pol, Trip, and all the rest of Star Trek: Enterprise are property of CBS/Paramount; no copyright infringement intended. I just want to play with them, and I’m careful!
I could feel the questions building in her all through the movie, and half expected them to burst out of her – but she’d learned the ‘protocol’ of Movie Night well. She just watched, her slanting brows and the way the light hit her hazel eyes – and the crinkle that matched Sally’s – showing that she was thinking hard, and not quite translating what she was seeing.
Every now and then, she leaned forward, her whipcord frame tensing a little, and then she’d look at me, and I’d be sure she was going to say something. But then she’d reach for the popcorn, instead, and there was something in the way she looked at me that said that she’d noticed the way I extended it a little less each time, so that she was gradually snuggling in closer and closer to my side.
I’d lobbied hard with Jon to get this movie shown. I really wanted to know what she thought of it, but, more importantly, how she felt while watching it.
And there would, of course, be questions.
I loved when T’Pol had questions…
I could feel Trip waiting, wanting me to forget my control and comment upon the movie. It had become a favorite pastime, among the crew – but none was as fervent as my bondmate. He was determined to surprise and confuse me. I didn’t have to guess at his intention, I could feel it thrumming through his mind.
Perhaps it had been a mistake to enlist him in my attempt to understand the human concept known as ‘love’. But both Hoshi and Phlox had said that, if I wanted to know what ‘love’ meant to Trip, it was Trip I must ask.
Trip had been equally certain – and, characteristically, far more adamant – that I needed to know what ‘love’ meant to me. He’d said that this movie, “When Harry Met Sally”, would be ‘enlightening’. He wouldn’t elaborate, and he dared me not to look at the database, the Tour Guide he had given me shortly after I joined the crew, or to ask anyone. I’d learned enough of humans, and of Trip, to accept the dare.
As I watched the climactic scene, I reached for Trip’s fingers, in the ouz’hesta. I had to dig into the popcorn to find them; he’d anticipated me, and the dimple showed in his cheek as he smiled to himself. I chose to reward him by remaining silent all the way back to my quarters.
“Aren’tcha gonna invite me in?” I made my drawl thick; she never seemed to be able to resist that, anymore. She just gestured into her dimly lit room, and stayed perfectly still while I passed her, trying to read her in the bond, and failing. She was a hell of a lot better at reading me, and it rankled –
She stepped in, the door started to close – and I suddenly had a Vulcan magnet attached to my lips.
Her kiss put Sally’s to shame, I decided. And it lasted a lot longer; long enough that I was almost panting by the time she’d gotten her fill.
“I have questions.” She seemed very collected, and, damn her, not at all out of breath.
“I’ll just bet you do. So, tell me – is it men and women as friends, days of the week underwear, good taste and a sense of humor, Surrey With the Fringe on Top, faking orgasms – ” She silenced me with another kiss, and, for a delicious minute or two, I totally forgot how much I wanted to hear what she had to say.
When Trip was breathless enough that even he would find speaking difficult, I ended the kiss, and extended my fingers to him, to lead him to the bed. “It is difficult to ask you anything when you will not be silent and allow me to speak.” I sat, bringing him with me, his fingers never allowing our contact to break, so that I could feel the stream of his awareness flowing through them, to me.
“Mmm,” he said, watching me, waiting.
“You will be quiet?” He nodded, and offered me first pose, fingertips slipping along mine, current sizzling through me, so that I moaned softly before I could go on. “At the end of the movie – Sally says, several times, that she hates Harry. And then she kisses him, and is smiling and crying – and then, they are debating the meaning of the music, in the same fashion they have always done.”
“Mmmn,” he said again. My fingers had their own will; they returned first pose, and extended it through second and into third. Trip smiled, settling with his back against the wall, and his eyes caught the firelight and held it.
“That, then, is the nature of love – the emotions of adoring, and despising, together? Accepting both as natural parts of the relationship? Accepting one another, as each is, without the desire to make of them something that they aren’t?”
“Hmmmn.” His lids lowered over his eyes; his breathing was slow and steady.
“Not sleepin’; just thinkin’ it over.” His fingers rolled over and across mine in a lazy echo, then darted up into fifth pose, skipping fourth entirely, as he suddenly leaned forward, wrapping his other arm behind my head, and easing me back onto the bed, leaning in to kiss me deeply. “I’ve never heard anyone put it quite that way before – but then, I’ve never heard a Vulcan try to understand love, either.”
His kisses fell randomly on my face and neck. I couldn’t predict where they would fall, and I shivered up into his body, as always drawn to his energy. “You didn’t answer my question.”
“Don’t think I’m qualified, pepperpot. If that’s what it feels like to you – well, your definition’s as good as anyone else’s. I can say that we do seem to both have felt both of those emotions for each other more than a time or two – and that I hope we can keep on accepting each other as-is – even while I’m pretty damned sure we’ll be knocking heads again before we know it…. but maybe that’s just part of who we are – “
I slipped my hands beneath his shirt – the soft blue one that precisely matched the shade of his eyes – and around to his back. He smiled as I explored the familiar terrain. I anchored myself in the feel and weight and scent of him, in his smile, and the way his eyes glowed when he was aroused, as he was now. All of these were centering, as I drew a deep breath, and pulled him close, so that his forehead rested against mine. And then I stared into his eyes, and uttered the words, and meant them with all that I was.
“Trip – t’hy’la – I love you.”