Code keys: For those who don't know, a code key is a piece of information necessary to find the meaning in a mess of symbols, letters of whatever. A secret message written by using every third word of a seemingly common paragraph is an example. The code key would be a hidden instruction to read only every third word. The more complicated the code the more keys or sets of instructions. For the hardest codes the keys themselves are also coded and need to be broken before the key can be used.
Seven of Nine looked at the Padd curiously. Lieutenant Torres had sent it to the former drone just that morning. Seven decided that she had the time to look at it immediately.
Two hours later a not too happy drone, stalked into engineering.
"Is this an attempt at humour, Lieutenant?" Seven asked with a slight frown.
"So, I finally found a code you can't get through?" B'Elanna asked with a grin. She had spent a lot of time getting the codes just right.
"I do not find this amusing." Seven Stated bluntly, as she set the Padd down. Turning to leave she was surprised to find a hand on her arm.
Careful not to use too much pressure and possibly irritate the blonde further, B'Elanna slowly turned the ex-drone around.
"It's not meant to be a joke." B'Elanna said with a straight face.
Knowing that B'Elanna would not lie, Seven believed her. "Then what is the purpose of this?" she asked with genuine curiosity.
"It's just a set of codes and encryptions on something I wrote. I thought you would enjoy the challenge of breaking into the document." B'Elanna said as her grin returned. She knew Seven could not admit defeat in anything, especially defeat to the half-Klingon.
"I see." Seven replied cooly as she took the Padd and stalked out of the room.
An hour later Seven returned. "There are a minimum of thirty-three lock out codes and logarhythms. Most of them seem to be randomly keyed. You said this was to be a challenge. I cannot bypass these lockouts."
"There are actually forty-five separate lockouts. Some are randomly keyed, but most are linked to specific things." B'Elanna answered with a smile. "You just have to be patient."
Seven merely raised an eyebrow and said nothing. She was not known for patience any more than B'Elanna was.
"OK," B'Elanna laughed. "Have lunch with me and I'll give you the first code key."
"Acceptable" Seven stated, as B'Elanna led the way to the mess hall.
"Red." Seven stated blankly. She'd expected a complicated set of logarhythms, not something as simple as a colour.
"Red." B'Elanna affirmed. "It's my favourite colour"
With a nod, Seven whipped out the Padd.
"Oh, no you don't," B'Elanna declared, as she took the Padd away. "You agreed to have lunch with me. You can do that later."
Reluctantly, Seven continued sipping her supplement.
It was three days later that Seven returned to engineering.
"I have broken through the next two lockouts. I have been unable to calculate the fourth." She told B'Elanna bluntly, as soon as she entered the smaller woman's office.
"I'm impressed." B'Elanna said seriously. "I expected you to take at least a week just to get the second code key."
"Indeed." Seven said smugly. "I am here for the fourth code. I have determined that it is a numerical sequence but no more. You agreed to provide the keys individually upon request."
"I remember." B'Elanna chuckled. "Dinner this time."
"Excuse me?" Seven asked, confused.
B'Elanna walked to within inches of the taller woman. "If you want the next code then meet me for dinner." she walked around the frowning woman. "1800 at Sandrines. Don't be late." When she was almost through the door, she turned back. "Seven. No nutritional supplements this time. Try some real food for a change."
Seven found that she enjoyed the meal more than she though she would. She also found that the small engineer was a surprisingly pleasant dinner companion. As the two parted for the night, B'Elanna gave her the next part of the code. This time the key was a date, B'Elanna's birthday.
For the next two months, Seven worked on the code. It was both frustrating and challenging. It was also the first time anyone had been able to successfully prevent her from accessing something. The fact that it was the fierce hybrid who had so easily locked her out of a simple document, made the challenge all the better. She learned a new respect for the small woman as she fought through each layer of the encryption. Each code key she discovered on her own filled her with great pride. Each failure left her with a vague feeling of inadequacy, until she learned to relax and simply enjoy the challenge.
When she reached an impassible barrier, B'Elanna would provide the solution. They would meet over dinner and, after an enjoyable meal, B'Elanna would give her the answer she needed. They also learned more about each other and seemingly by accident, Seven realized they had become friends. By the time Seven neared the end of the long series of code keys, there had been several dinners just for the sake of enjoying each other's company.
"I have reached the last layer of encryption." Seven announced at dinner that evening.
"I wondered why you invited me to dinner." B'Elanna joked as she sipped her wine.
"That is not why I invited you to dinner." Seven exclaimed. "I wish to find the last key unaided."
"Then why did you invite me tonight? Usually, you only ask me to dinner if you want a code key." B'Elanna said carefully, as she saw a strange look pass over Seven's face.
"I wanted to know," here Seven hesitated, unsure of herself.
"Wanted to know what?" B'Elanna asked gently, while taking a mesh covered hand in her own.
Feeling the warm hand holding her own gave Seven courage.
"Will you still seek my company once I have accessed the document?" Seven asked in a rush, as she stared glumly at the table.
The fact that the blond was nervous was not lost on B'Elanna. Seven was afraid that once this game of breaking codes was finished, they would return to their old animosity.
"Yes, I will!" B'Elanna stated emphatically. "If you care to remember, I'm the one who's been issuing most of the dinner invitations."
When Seven still looked unsure, B'Elanna changed the subject. "When do you expect to break through the last key?"
"I estimate the task will require 4.3 hours." Seven replied solemnly. "I will begin the process once my duty shift ends tomorrow."
Dinner was quiet after that and the two soon parted.
Seven broke the code the next day. The last key had been one of the easiest ones. Had Seven not been assuming that the key would be complicated, she would have found it earlier. The key had been both a name and the title of the document. It was Seven.
After entering her own name, the document finally opened to reveal a poem.
Seven gasped as she read the words.
There was no chime, no warning. One second B'Elanna was relaxing on her couch, enjoying her music collection, the next a tall beautiful Borg had bypassed the locks and was standing in the middle of the room. B'Elanna was on her feet in an instant.
With shaky hands, Seven held out the Padd.
B'Elanna stalked towards the trembling woman and gently removed the Padd from clutching fingers.
Seven watched the Padd as B'Elanna casually dropped it to the floor. The Padd landed face up and Seven stood staring at the floor mutely, unable to take her eyes off the words.
B'Elanna simply stood in front of Seven and waited. After long moments, B'Elanna became impatient.
Tangling her fingers in the blond hair she pulled back, until Seven was forced to look B'Elanna in the eye.
When eyes locked, Seven was able to see the arousal. With a hard shudder, she closed her eyes.
"Look at me." B'Elanna demanded in a rough voice.
"No." she whispered.
"Are you afraid of me?" B'Elanna asked softly.
A sharp intake of breath and a tug as Seven feebly tried to move away from the hand holding her in place was B'Elanna's answer. Seven was afraid, but B'Elanna could smell the arousal pouring off the taller woman in waves. Had Seven really wanted, she could have pulled away easily. She was afraid to stay, but she was more afraid of walking away.
Still holding Seven's hair, she pulled her slowly forward and down. When B'Elanna carefully nipped her full lips, Seven gasped. When she took those lips in a demanding, possessive kiss, Seven moaned.
With firm but not painful, pressure, B'Elanna again used Seven's hair to move the taller woman. When Seven was once more standing upright, B'Elanna demanded. "Look at me!"
Seven opened her eyes to be captured by the fierce gaze of B'Elanna. Drowning in eyes that had gone almost black with arousal, Seven was lost.
B'Elanna, who had been lost a long time ago, found herself scorched by an electric blue of a hue she knew she would never see anywhere else.
Without a word, B'Elanna let go of silky soft hair and took Seven's hand leading her to the bedroom.
Laying forgotten on the floor, was the Padd with it's message:
I claim you.
You are mine.
I will take you in my arms
I will bring you to the heights of ecstacy
I will sate my lust upon you,
as I awaken your own desires.
My lips will follow the path my fingers take.
I will touch you as I please.
I will touch you as you please.
Bodies slick with sweat,
we will move together.
You will cling to me,
moving to the ancient dance.
I will claim you with my hands and mouth,
as you lay open before me.
Body, mind, soul.
You are mine.
You will call my name.
You will know you belong to me.
I claim you
You are mine.
I will love you forever.