The two women faced each other. No one standing in the line of fire could mistake their intent. Even the toughest veteran ran to get out of the way. No one wanted to be caught in the crossfire. It was only a matter of seconds before the two had the town to themselves.
It was hot in the dusty street. Nothing moved in the heat except the tumbleweeds blowing down the street. The horses stood with heads hung low. The heat and a common sense that animals had, but humans rarely did, kept them still as they waited like everyone and everything else. Faces could be dimly glimpsed through the dirty windows of the Lucky Dollar, but no one dared to venture outside. Except for the two woman standing in the middle of the street the town could have been deserted for all anyone could tell.
Even the sheriff dared not interfere. This showdown had been coming for some time. The only choice was to stay out of the way and let the two settle this once and for all.
"You have chosen costumes inappropriate to the era." Seven announced snidely from her end of the street. She was not about to admit that the holo-program was an excellent representation of the old west. Torres had outdone herself.
"So what?" B'Elanna sneered, looking down at her clothing. Both women were dressed in fatigues resembling soldiers of the mid-twentieth century. "I didn't see you programming any of this, so you can just deal with it."
Seven didn't comment as she checked her weapon. When she was ready, she looked at B'Elanna with a raised brow. B'Elanna finished with her weapon and took a step forward.
"Before we begin I would like to clarify the rules." Seven sated calmly.
"How much clearer do you want them?" B'Elanna growled. "Ok, one more time. We shoot each other. It's that simple. Other than that, there are no rules. You'll find extra ammo in your pockets."
"I see your logic in choosing this gab." Seven approved, as she found ammunition in each of the uniforms many pockets. "When do we begin this exercise?" she asked.
"When I count to..." B'Elanna stopped as she was hit in the middle of the forehead.
"You said there would be no rules." Seven reminded as she dived behind the nearest cover, which happened to be a large crate in front of the mercantile.
The next hour saw the two in a running battle across the length of the town. Crates, horse troughs and may times, the horses themselves served as cover. Shots were fired with a fury as each emptied clip after clip at the other. Finally, B'Elanna cornered Seven in the short alley beside the saloon.
"Do you give up?" she asked politely. The effect was spoiled by the huge grin.
Seven said nothing as she watched the smaller woman approach.
When B'Elanna was a few paces closer she asked. "Do you surrender." When she saw Seven begin to raise her weapon, she quickly aimed her own. Seven let hers drop.
B'Elanna moved closer still, until she was only a few inches away. "Will you surrender to me?" she asked again, as she calmly plucked Sevens weapon out of her hand. This time, her tone and expression gave the question an entirely different meaning
"I will." Seven replied with an uncharacteristic giggle. "But can we go wash off this paint first."
B'Elanna looked down at her own paint soaked clothes.
"I think I can arrange that." B'Elanna agreed with a grin of her own. "So what did you think?"
"Shooting you was enjoyable. However, I did not realize substituting paint pellets for normal ballistic ammunition could be so messy." Seven said, holding up a paint covered hand.
B'Elanna reached up and after wiping the worst of the paint off Seven's face, leaned in for a slow thorough kiss. "That's the best part. Now we get to help each other clean up."
"I see" Seven said with a grin. "That will take some time. Even the sonic shower may not remove all of the particles."
"I agree." B'Elanna said with a laugh. "A thorough examination might be necessary to make sure we get all of it."
"Then, can I finish surrendering to you?" Seven asked with a grin and knowing look.
"You're priceless." B'Elanna laughed. "Let's go home."