This is for Sgt Tamar Bains, a US soldier. Thank you for your kind words and your brave heart.
Disclaimer: Paramount owns the characters. Creative content, plot and original characters belong to me.
I wrote this at 1am this morning! Please forgive the fubars.
“Ignoring me won’t make me go away, Jean Luc,” said Q.
“You won’t mind then if I keep trying,” said Picard. He dumped his unfinished meal into the recycler and brushed past Q on the way to his sleeping alcove. He was too exhausted to eat but too emotionally wired to sleep.
Unfortunately, he also continued to feel the effects of the sonic stimulation on his genitals, despite being blasted by the jet of water. The head of his cock was still tender and buzzed warmly with a feeling much like the after effects of a long, vigorous round of fucking.
Picard clenched his fists then splayed his fingers, inhaling and exhaling deeply through his mouth. He stretched his arms above his head. He dropped his arms and rolled his shoulders. He tried to force the thoughts of sex from his mind. He rarely masturbated, and he found holodeck liaisons even less satisfying. He usually expended his sexual energy on a good round of parisses squares.
But tonight, his arousal was particularly persistent.
He glanced behind him. Q had disappeared—but that didn’t mean that he was gone.
Jean Luc removed his pants, folded them neatly and placed them on a chair. Suddenly, he felt a little silly.
Get over yourself, Picard, he thought. It’s only a wank.
He took a tube of lubricant from the bedside table drawer, stretched out on the bed and finally let his body have its way. His scrotum tightened and his cock swelled. He squirted the lubricant unto his fingers and gripped his shaft. He began to pump slowly, watching his cock slide through his fist. He wanted to draw this out but realized with hot annoyance that it’d been too long and that perhaps the sonic stimulation had more effect on him than he thought and suddenly he could feel and taste and smell—Lily! He came with a long low moan and strong spasm that doubled him over.
He lay back on his bed and waited for his heart to stop pounding.
“Shit,” he said.
“Not a personal best, eh, Jean Luc?” said Q.
“No thanks to you,” sighed Picard, laying a forearm across his eyes.
“Just say the word and you can have the real thing.”
“Leave me alone,” said Picard. He stood and walked to his bathroom. He ran hot water over a flannel, staring for a long time at the cloudy water as it soaked into the cloth and ran over his fingers. Warm hands began to knead the muscles in his shoulders. Jean Luc closed his eyes.
“Don’t, Q,” he said.
“Not Q. Me,” whispered in his ear.
Soft breasts pressed against his back and Jean Luc almost gave into it. He opened his eyes and looked in the mirror. Lily gazed back at him from over his shoulder. He pushed her away gently with his elbow. He squeezed the water from the flannel and cleaned the semen from his belly and pubic hair.
“Well,” said Q in Lily’s voice. “That should’ve earned me a punch in the mouth.”
Picard tossed the flannel into the cycler. He walked over to the portal and gazed down at Earth. It was 0230 in France and they were passing over the twinkling lights of Paris.
“Space has a smell. Did you know that?” he said. “You can smell it in the airlock.”
“Your Klingon watchdog destroyed my sense of smell. You should order him to bathe more often.”
“Earth’s space has an odor like eggs. Hard fried in browned butter.”
“I wouldn’t know,” sniffed Q.
“Vulcan’s space smells like fresh rain.” Jean Luc turned from the portal. “Ironic, isn’t it?”
Q shrugged a small shoulder. He was still Lily, now dressed in the satin and sequined dress from the holodeck.
Picard glanced a last time down at Earth then ran a hand over his face. “Computer, sleep program, Picard 1,” he said. The sound of the ocean rose in the room—not the gentle rush of waves lapping the beach, but the boom and crash of the surf rhythmically pounding boulders at the base of a seaside cliff. The lights in the cabin dimmed and the temperature gradually lowered to 17c. Picard climbed into bed and lay on top of the coverlet. His truncated masturbation session had done little to relax him.
Q stood over him with his hands clamped to his ears. “How can you sleep with this din, Jean Luc,” he shouted. “What is that?”
“That’s Earth? I’ve never been to Earth. No one’s invited me,” said Q, petulantly.
Picard rolled away from him. “You’ve got the wrong color,” he said.
“What?” shouted Q.
“The dress is the wrong color.”
The sound of the waves stopped.
“You remember the color of her dress?” asked Q.
Picard sat up. “Computer, sleep program, Picard 1.” The program did not resume. He glared at Q. “I’m tired. Please go.”
“You’re not only tired,” Q said. He gestured at Picard’s semi-erect penis.
Picard snatched the coverlet over his mid-section and dropped back onto the pillows.
“What do you want, Q?”
“I want what you want, Mon Capitan.”
“I should hate you, you know.”
“I can’t imagine why,” said Q, genuinely confused.
“You brought the Borg to Federation space.”
“You mean to you, Jean Luc.”
“Not just me, countless others. Wolf 359--.”
“The Borg would have discovered your precious Federation sooner or later.”
“We’d have been prepared.”
“They would’ve assimilated you, quietly, quickly, one world at a time. I did you a favor.”
Picard opened his mouth to argue but he knew Q was right. The Borg relied heavily on the element of surprise, appearing suddenly in orbit from one of their singularities, having surreptitiously studied a world long enough to ascertain both strengths and weakness and laying down a plan of assimilation. When Q flung the Enterprise at that first Borg ship, it leveled the playing field--allowing the Federation to do almost as much damage to the Borg Collective as the Collective did to the Federation.
“And.” Q, himself again, held up a finger. “Were it not for me—or the Borg, rather--you never would’ve met Lily.” He stretched out a hand and admired his sparkling fingernails. He yawned hugely. “You’re boring me tonight, Jean Luc.” He wandered to the portal. “If there’s nothing else?”
“I didn’t ask you to come here,” snapped Picard.
“Whatever you say,” said Q. He looked down at Earth with glittering eyes.
“Don’t even think about it,” said Picard.
“I couldn’t care less about your miserable little ball of mud,” said Q, appearing beside the bed as a Deltan female. “There’s billions of infinitely more interesting balls with which to play,” he said, tweaking the head of Jean Luc’s penis with two long fingers. He leaned close and breathed pheromones into Picard’s face.
“God damn it, Q,” yelled Picard, but Q winked out with a chuckle and a tiny burst of light.
Jean Luc held his breath and fanned the air in front of his face but it was no use. He could feel the pheromones working on his nervous system. He was flooded with a sense of well-being even as he fought to hold on to his foul mood. Every muscle in his body warmed. Deltan pheromones affected every humanoid species differently and to a greater or lesser degree. For whatever reason, Jean Luc’s reaction was quite strong and long-lasting. His penis throbbed. The thought to trek to sickbay for an antidote faded into a faintly ridiculous idea.
“Oh,” he sighed. There was nothing to do but let the pheromones run their course. He laced his fingers behind his head in an effort to keep his hands away from his genitals.
Later that night, Jean Luc lay back against his damp pillows, cursing Q and marveling at himself, having nearly broken a particular record set when he was twenty-six. He awakened the next morning feeling slightly dehydrated and deeply embarrassed. There were dark circles under his eyes and he scrubbed down his body with soap and water in a cold shower. He ordered sausages and black Turkish coffee instead of his regular croissant and Earl Grey for breakfast.
On the bridge, he stalked to the center chair yawning and holding a fresh cup of coffee, but he felt both tired and invigorated.
Data cocked his head curiously but remained focused on his console. “Captain on the bridge,” he said.
“Thank you, Mr. Data,” said Picard. He plopped down in the center chair with a quiet grunt. He sipped his coffee, leaned back and tugged on the front of his tunic. He refused to look at Riker who gazed at him with a cocked brow.
“Status report, Number One,” ordered Picard.
“Steady as she goes, sir,” he said. Riker was silent for a moment. “You sleep in this morning, sir?”
Jean Luc’s face warmed. He cleared his throat. “You could say that,” he said.
“Yes, Mr. Data.”
“At 2347, sensors detected Deltan--,” Data began.
“Yes, yes Data. I’m aware of that,” Picard said. His face colored even more.
Data turned in his chair and looked at the captain. “Sir?”
“I er, I’m aware of what the sensor logs contain.”
“Yes, sir,” said Data.
Picard felt Riker’s stare. He sighed. “Q,” he said quietly.
“Do I want to know?” asked Riker.
“Why me, Will? Why, of the trillions of life forms in the galaxy, he chooses to torment me?”
“Your charm and good looks.”
“He thinks I need a vacation,” frowned Picard.
“He has a point.”
“No. He does not.”
“You look like crap, Jean Luc.”
“I mean, you actually look better this morning, so whatever Q did—.”
“Stow that thought, Commander.”
Riker held up a hand. “I’m just making an observation—which is my job, by the way. You’re the only one who didn’t take shore leave during the repairs.”
“Yes I did.”
“You were onboard the whole time. Getting in everybody’s way, I might add.”
“I merely wanted to ensure that all of the Borg technology was removed from my ship.”
“Nice try,” said Riker.
“We’re headed back to the Neutral Zone. Twelve days of nothing to do. How about a compromise?”
Picard frowned. There was that word again. “I’m listening,” he said.
“A few days of riding and hiking in the holodeck,” said Riker.
“I’ll consider it.”
“I said, I’ll consider it, Number One.”
Data’s head cocked again.
“Yes, sir,” said Riker. He checked the padd on his chair. “Four hours twenty nine minutes until the NZ, Captain.”
Picard drummed his fingers on the arm of his chair. “I’ll be in my ready room.”
Riker glanced back at Worf as the captain walked across the bridge. Worf shrugged with a wrinkle of his nose ridges.
Picard entered his ready room and dumped the coffee in the cycler. He stretched his arms above his head and gazed at his reflection in the long viewport. His shoulders and biceps were still thick with muscle but he thought he might be getting a bit thin in the chest. He was eighty three this year--a decade over middle-aged. He placed a hand on his midriff and raised his chin. He pinched the skin over his Adam’s apple and pulled on it. It didn’t snap back like it used to.
“I’m old,” he said to his reflection.
End Chapter 3