Slavery Suits You
Tom Paris grinned as the Delta Flyer came to a halt.
"We did it!" He exclaimed. "We’ve traveled over 100 light years in a little under an hour."
Beside him, Harry Kim glared at his friend. "We’re also dead in the water."
"Ensign Kim is correct. Our trip through the slip stream has burned out most of the power relays." Seven of Nine pointed out with her usual lack of emotion.
Behind them at the engineering console, B’Elanna Torres was slightly more vocal. "Tom you idiot! We managed to travel farther than Voyager could get in a week, and then you just had to increase speed. What did you think you could prove with a stunt like that. You used up more power in the last three minutes than we did for the last hour. Now tell me, how the hell do you plan on getting back to Voyager." With a muffled curse, she pounded the dead console in frustration.
The slipstream technology had been more of a headache than anything for the Voyager crew. Though they had obtained a great deal of information about the technology which would allow Voyager to travel at speeds much faster than maximum warp, it had been impossible to integrate it with Voyager’s existing technology. That was until now. Using the Delta flyer for their experiments they had finally managed to bring the small craft successfully though the slip stream.
Had it not been for Tom Paris, the experiment might even be called a success. The rash helmsman had however, made one mistake. At the moment a serious and potentially deadly mistake. In traveling the slip stream he had decided, without consulting the others, to increase the speed of the small vessel. He had been so intent on showing off that he hadn’t bothered to notice that the increase in speed had caused an exponential drain on the ships power. Now they were back in normal space and the small ship had only enough energy to power life support and a few minor systems. Until Voyager caught up with them in about three weeks time they were sitting ducks for any aliens that might find them.
"So it’ll take a few hours to power up. It was worth it. Look out there. We did it. We’ll be home in no time." Tom gushed, still caught up in his own personal ego trip. He didn’t notice the frustrated look directed his way by Harry or the faint sneer on Seven’s face.
What he did notice was B’Elanna reaching for a hyper-spanner and the look of pure murder on her face.
"Do you see any dilithium laying around?" she shouted as she advanced on him. "How do you expect to power up when we have nothing to generate power with. How do you expect us to run power through burned out relays? You drained every ounce of energy we had with that last stunt. What the hell did you think you were trying to prove showing off like that?"
Though she knew the Klingon had a right to be angry, Seven stepped in and held the smaller woman back. Harry also stepped in front of Tom in case B’Elanna got past Seven.
"I should let her kill you for that, Tom." he whispered for Tom’s ears alone, though both women heard him clearly. In a normal voice he added, "Why did you have to do that Tom? We were already in the slip stream. What were you trying to prove?"
"I was just...." Tom shrugged with what he hoped was his best boyish grin.
"Showing off as usual." Harry roared. Both women were silent as Harry rounded on him. "You begged and begged to be the one to fly this mission. Any of the three of us could have done it. Hell, Tom it’s not like you had anything to do with any of the calculations or the retrofitting. Even Captain Janeway assumed one of us would pilot the ship. We agreed to let you do it as a favour to a friend. And to thank us, you have to pull one of your stupid ass stunts. Being your friend may have just cost all of us our lives." and with that he hit Paris, making an audible crunch as the helmsmans nose was broken.
Turning back to the two surprised women, he ignored Tom as he addressed B’Elanna. "Well, O glorious leader, any ideas?"
B’Elanna had been the project leader since the beginning when she and Seven had both made breakthroughs with different aspects of the slip stream problem. After getting the Captains permission and bringing Harry into the project, the three had slowly turned the Delta Flyer into a craft that could handle the stresses of the slip stream. Now, it was her responsibility to try and find a way out of the mess that Tom Paris had stupidly caused.
Still furious, B’Elanna managed to calm herself enough to take care of the business at hand.
"First get that p’Taq out of my sight. Then we’ll do a check of all systems and see what we can get running. Harry and I will do the manual checks, Seven I want you to look over all the system logs and data outputs. And I want you to do it as quickly as possible. Don’t cross reference or anything, just use that Borg speed reading of yours and see if you can find anything obvious."
"That is not efficient. If I do as you suggest I could easily miss relevant information." Seven stated as she gave Torres a patented Borg look.
‘When did that look stop bothering me?’ B’Elanna asked herself. Shaking the thought off, she impatiently told Seven. "I know you’ll likely miss several important things doing it this way. Unfortunately, we may not have time to do it properly. We’re sitting ducks at the moment and we can’t even scan to see if anyone is on their way here right now. Our first priority is to get this ship running. If you can find something useful with a quick look then all the better. If not then you can do a more thorough scan of the data."
"It will take me approximately on hour to do as you suggest. An hour that will be better served doing it properly to begin with." Seven stated with a slight frown.
Running her hand through her hair in exasperation, B’Elanna ground out. "And doing it properly will take at least fifteen hours. I know it’s a calculated risk that you’ll be wasting your time. But if it pays off we’ll be mobile that much sooner."
Linking her hands behind her back and standing impossibly straighter, Seven replied. "You’re idea has no merit. I..."
Before she could finish the sentence B’Elanna ground out. "Just do it Seven, that is a direct order."
And to the amazement of both Harry and B’Elanna, Seven bowed her head slightly and answered, "I will comply." then moved to the science station and began sorting the data at amazing speed.
Turning to each other with the same puzzled look, B’Elanna found her voice first. "Shall we?" asked as she and Harry moved to separate panels and began the task of sorting through the fused relays.
While Tom sulked in the back of the small vessel, after having to repair his broken nose himself, the others began the task of getting the Delta flyer moving again. He had been thoroughly ignored by one and all since being roughly ordered by his former girlfriend to ‘get out of the way and don’t say a damn word.’
With the glares he had gotten from his one and only attempt to speak with the others he knew that he would really have to pour on the charm to get out of this one. What he completely failed to realize, was that there would be no forgiveness for this latest stunt. Tom didn’t know it yet, but he was soon to finally grow up.... the hard way.
The silence of the other three was of a more comfortable kind as each concentrated on their work.
In the next few hours the three slowly brought some of the small ships systems back online.
"We have propulsion. Unfortunately we only have impulse engines. But, at least that should get us to a hiding place so we can wait for Voyager." B’Elanna announced to Seven as she moved to stand beside the taller woman. "How are you doing with the sensors?"
"I estimate we will have long range sensors within the next three minutes." Seven replied.
"Not bad Seven, I don’t think I could have done it that fast." B’Elanna complimented as she moved to assist the former drone.
"I believe the correct term is that your gamble ‘paid off’ B’Elanna. Had I not done a quick Borg look as you termed it, it would have taken me at least thirteen hours to identify the correct frequencies and modulations." Seven complimented in return.
As the two worked together on the sensors, Harry shook his head in amusement. Three months ago when they had first began the tedious job of readying the Delta Flyer for this experiment, Seven and B’Elanna had barely tolerated each other. They had agreed to work together out of necessity. Each possessed unique skills that were Voyagers only hope of ever getting the slip stream technology to work.
Many times Harry had found himself in the role of peacemaker between the two women. In the first tense weeks, Harry had wondered if he was there to assist or to act as a witness in case of bloodshed. Now they were actually getting along and the difference was amazing. He had never imagined that Seven would call anyone, least of all B’Elanna by their first name, and just the idea of the volatile Klingon apologizing to anyone, especially Seven, amazed him.
Now, as he watched B’Elanna causally leaning past Seven’s shoulder to better see the readouts, Harry wondered just how much closer the two would eventually become. ‘They say opposites attract and those two are about as opposite as you can get’ he thought with a grin, as he went back to his own work.
A loud Klingon curse announced that the scanners were working a beat before Torres shouted, "Harry how long until you can get the phasers back online?"
"At least six hours, four if I get lucky and can bypass the secondary emitters." he replied as he crawled out from under the control station.
"We don’t even have one hour. Come and look at this." B’Elanna called as she pointed to the enormous image on the scanner readout. "Seven start scanning for somewhere to hide." Torres barked as she began checking readouts.
"They are on an intercept course, Lieutenant." Seven stated cooly. "They will be here in one hour and 22 minutes."
"Harry see what you can do about communications. If we can’t shoot em at least we might be able to bluff them. And get that distress beacon launched, I don’t care if you have to shove it out the airlock with your bare hands. Seven what’s the closest system?" B’Elanna barked as she moved to the pilots chair and began to power up the engines.
"We are at the edge of a twelve planet system. The inner three are habitable." Seven stated as she rapidly read over the stream of data flashing across her screen.
Just as the engines finally powered up and B’Elanna was about to turn the ship into the ring of planets Seven spoke again. "The closing ship is Bidellian, species 3935."
"Are they friendly? What do you know about them?" B’Elanna asked with relief. She had learned to read Seven a little in the last few months and could tell by the almost imperceptible change of tone that Seven had good news, or at least news that was not too horrible.
"They are not friendly and if we try to escape, they will pursue until they destroy us." Seven stated calmly.
"Then why do you sound so damn calm all of a sudden?" B’Elanna shouted at the ex-drone.
Seven raised an implanted brow at this, but did not comment as she looked cooly at the angry face of the half-Klingon. Instead she said, "The Bidellians are a militaristic society. They were found unworthy of assimilation due to their lack of advanced technology. The status of individuals is determined by their combat abilities. They are much on a par with Klingons in their behaviors. They also can be very..."
"You mean we just found the delta quadrants version of Klingons?" B’Elanna interrupted. "Just how much like Klingons are they?" she asked, still not sure why Seven would think this was good news.
"With one notable exception, they are almost identical to Klingons in attitude and behaviour." Seven answered. "It is that one exception that may be to our direct advantage."
"Why is it that I suddenly feel like I’d rather be running away right now? "Harry asked rhetorically, as he took the seat beside Seven.
Ignoring Harry, Seven gave B’Elanna a direct stare as she continued. "Bidellians routinely enslave captured enemies. To possess slaves captured in combat is a tangible show of military prowess to the Bidelli. The more slaves one has, the more respect, status and honour he has among his peers. That is their likely intent in intercepting us as they are. However a warrior traveling with three slaves would be assumed to be of sufficient status to be treated with a certain amount of respect among the Bidelli. "
B’Elanna said nothing as she gave Seven a look of understanding. The Klingon attitude she already understood from her own life. Enslavement of an enemy she also understood from her time in the Maquis. Dealing with the Cardassians had taught her a lot about that particular horror. She knew in an instant exactly what it was going to take to deal with these beings and not only stay alive, but stay free.
"So one of us plays master while the rest cower in the background and they let us go?" Tom blurted from his spot at the rear. "Sounds easy enough. I’ll be a great master." he joked as the others glared at him.
"Tom, you are a complete idiot." Harry stated as he turned back to B’Elanna and Seven. "I’m guessing that you get to be the master in this little play B’Elanna. As the only one here qualified to act like a Klingon," he joked, "that part makes sense, but why do I get the feeling that there’s a whole lot more to this that I’m not catching?" he asked in a more serious tone.
"The part Seven hasn’t said is that if I can pull this off , we get to be honoured guests. Or rather I get to be an honoured guest while you three get to be my obedient slaves until Voyager comes to get us. Is that about right Seven?" B’Elanna asked, as she carefully watched Seven from her place in the pilots chair.
"That is correct." Seven replied. "If the Bidellians accept B’Elanna as a warrior and ally of acceptable status they will offer assistance. Since they do not possess sufficient technology to aid us, they will offer their hospitality until Voyager arrives. If we refuse they will see it as a great insult."
"So they see you with a bunch of slaves and they’ll help us? It sounds better than taking our chances in open space the way we are right now." Harry commented.
"It’s not quite that simple. Do you want to tell Harry the rest or shall I Seven?" B’Elanna asked softly. The look on Seven face told her all she needed to know. For an unemotional Borg, Seven was having a difficult time hiding her feelings at the moment. Though Harry had not quite figured out all of the rest of it, B’Elanna found the sight of Seven’s discomfort distinctly amusing.
Not bothering to hide a small grin, she waited to see if the ex-drone would answer.
"The Bidelli will not immediately capture or destroy a fellow warrior and possible ally. It is by presenting herself as such, with a sufficient number of slaves as proof, that they will not simply enslave all of us to improve their own status. Once contact is made and said proof given, B’Elanna will have to challenge one of the Bidelli, and win. They will not respect her if they cannot see her prowess for themselves. This will not be a problem, physically you are far superior." Seven hastened to assure. "Then we will likely be taken to one of their planets, where B’Elanna will indeed be treated as an honoured guest until Voyager arrives." She finished. "We, on the other hand, will be expected to obey B’Elanna’s every order or face immediate physical punishment. If at any time the Bidelli see through the charade, we will all be enslaved for real."
"But you still aren’t telling him the best part." B’Elanna said with a grin as she stood and leaned over the console towards Seven.
"Best part? What are you talking about?" Harry asked. He was still processing the physical punishment aspect of this charade they were about to attempt. "How can there be a best part?"
Leaning forward until she was almost touching noses with the tall blond, B’Elanna grinned, "Seven gets to be my sex slave." she purred as Seven turned crimson.
"What?" Harry and Tom exploded together, while Seven looked at the console and refused to meet B’Elanna’s eyes.
"Ok, ok! Settle down. It’s simple. Women don’t hang around war zones. Female slaves would be very scarce. Me showing up with a female slave will cause quite a sensation, especially if I’m not taking advantage of my, shall we say, ownership. If they thought she wasn’t mine, in every sense of the word, I’d spend all my time trying to find excuses not to share. Once the excuses dried up, we’d have an even bigger problem on our hands." B’Elanna explained.
Reaching out, she gently lifted Seven’s chin until their eyes met. "It’ll be all right, I promise" she whispered, so low that only Seven could hear. After a long moment of staring into each others eyes, B’Elanna released Seven and went back to her seat.
With a slight nod, Seven added. "Lieutenant Torres is correct. Male slaves are employed for the heavy and more dangerous tasks. Females are reserved for the pleasure of their masters and simpler duties. However, I should point out that neither males nor females usually survive their captivities long among the Bidelli. They are brutal in their treatment of those they deem inferior."
"That won’t be a problem." B’Elanna stated with conviction. "Well keep this simple, I’ll start with the basics and from there you’ll just have to follow my lead."
"What basics?" Tom asked from his place at the back of the small craft. "Ok, I’ll admit the aggressive warrior part you got covered, but what do you know about slavery? I didn’t know Starfleet taught slavery 101." he commented with a smirk.
Before he could say more, he found himself looking at the snarling face of B’Elanna, poised only a few inches from his own. He flinched when she grabbed his collar, dragged him forward and threw him into the vacant seat opposite Harry.
"How about Maquis 101. The Cardassians kept slaves. We studied the practice in depth so we could infiltrate them better, posing as slaves or slave traders. Now, just shut the hell up Tom and listen carefully." the fiery Klingon growled, as she glared at the helmsman.
Turning slightly, so she could address them all she swallowed her temper, moved over to an access hatch and began. "Our first priority is to fix the replicator. We’ll need a few things. Seven bring that tool box over here and Harry start replacing those fused circuits. Now listen carefully while I explain some of the more important things you’ll need to know. First there’s the ......"
B’Elanna explained what would be expected of them in their new roles, right up until they were hailed by the Bidellian ship. They had barely finished replicating and donning the clothing and other supplies that would help them to establish their roles.
"Right on time." Harry muttered as he took his seat at the communications station.
The ship came into visual range just as the four took their positions with B’Elanna in the pilots seat and Tom sitting at the still unusable engineering station. The approaching vessel was huge. It was jet black and looked almost un-space worthy. Seven had been right when she said they had inferior technology. They had made up for the lack by using what they did have in abundance. At a glance B’Elanna could count at least thirty laser cannon pods and as many openings for what she assumed were some kind of torpedo. Easily twice Voyagers size, it carried a bristling array of weaponry.
"Halt alien vessel. Lower shields." came the officious voice of a Bidellian officer, as the small view screen flickered to life showing a husky alien with almost Vulcan features.
What the officer saw was a small cockpit manned by four people. The woman in the forward seat was glaring back. This could only be the small ships captain. Wearing black pants and shirt, she radiated power and authority.
Crossing her arms, she looked at the officer as if he were stupid. "My engines are offline and I have no shields. Now, do you have any other idiotic demands or can I get back to repairing my ship?" she asked casually, as the other Bidellians on the large ships bridge laughed at their officer.
Sputtering at the insult, the officer replied, "Prepare to be boarded or you will be destroyed."
"What?" Roared B’Elanna. "What kind of honourless P’Taq approaches a disabled vessel and threatens its destruction? Is this cowardice what a Klingon warrior can expect from the Bidelli?"
Seven, Harry and Tom tensely watched the scene unfold. Everything was in B’Elanna’s hands now. In two short sentences she had claimed status as a warrior and managed to insult one of their officers thus guaranteeing a challenge.
"I am no coward." the man roared, as the other members of the larger ships bridge crew still snickered in the background " I am lieutenant Koron of the first phalanx of clan Ditem, aboard the ship Setten. No one calls me a coward. Now prepare to be boarded or I will give the order to open fire. Count yourself lucky that you are a female. If you were a man I would offer you a blood challenge."
"If you were a man, I would accept. Now, underling, go and fetch your captain so that we adults may discuss this matter." B’Elanna answered with a sneer, as Koron’s face purpled in rage.
Before Koron could answer, he was shoved forcefully away from he screen by a huge Bidellian. "What is the meaning of this?" he demanded roughly. "You are an intruder in our space and you have the nerve to challenge one of my officers."
"I challenge a fool. If he happens to be an officer of yours, that is not my concern." B’Elanna stated nonchalantly. "As to my presence in your space, my ship has been damaged and drifting for several hours now. If I have managed to enter your territory, it is an accident I assure you."
With a shrewd look in his eye the captain said. "I am Dilos, captain of the Setten. It seems that you have a challenge to answer. We will activate tractor beams and bring your ship aboard. Once the challenge has been answered we will discuss this matter. Agreed?"
With a shrewd look of her own, B’Elanna nodded once and the small ship lurched under the sudden pull of a tractor beam.
Ending the transmission, B’Elanna turned in her chair. "Now what?" Harry asked.
"Now I get to kick some ass." B’Elanna said with a huge grin as the Delta Flyer slowly entered the huge ships landing bay.
With a jolt the Delta flyer came to a stop. B’Elanna stood and moved to the exit hatch. Turning to the others she said, "Ok, just remember what I said and everything will be fine. Seven you stay close." and with that the four, led by B’Elanna stepped out of the flyer and into what could be their deaths.
The first thing they saw as the exited the flyer was a line of soldiers aiming laser weapons at them. Standing off to the side was Dilos and the lieutenant that B’Elanna had insulted. Ignoring the soldiers B’Elanna walked purposely up to Dilos.
The fierce looking officer stood at least a head taller than the Klingon and was almost twice as broad. Koron, the man she had offended earlier was almost as large. Dilos looked slightly amused as he watched the small woman approach. She was dressed in black shirt and pants with a brushed black leather jacket. The material was dark as night and tight enough to accentuate every curve and line of body, yet of a material that allowed full movement. A wide belt held an assortment of devices including a large sheathed dagger. The slight scowl and watchful attitude, did nothing to detract from her beauty as she strode with unconscious grace across the hangar. ‘It’s a shame that Koron will get her after he defeats her’ he thought to himself.
Noting the plain unadorned matching tan tunic and pants of the two men, he decided that they were subordinates, likely slaves and of no note.
The female closely trailing the short warrior on the other hand caught his immediate attention. Also likely a slave, she was dressed all in black, and stood almost as tall as Dilos himself.
On closer look, one could see that the deceptively simple and loose fitting, shirt and pants were almost transparent, revealing the line of body underneath. Black undergarments kept all from being revealed, yet enhanced rather than detracted from the illusion of almost nudity. More of the adornments that graced her face and neck could be dimly seen in outline beneath the filmy material. As she walked, the folds of the garment moved slightly to show slits from ankle to hip and wrist to shoulder, with small gold buttons gathering the material at knee and elbow.
The flash of skin and glint of metal as she walked, caused Dilos to feel a familiar stirring in his groin. ‘Once Koron beats this little upstart, I’ll have to challenge him for rights to this female.’ he thought to himself.
With a small grin to Koron, who returned it with a grin of his own, Dilos turned his attention back to the approaching group.
"I am Dilos, pater of the clan Droud and captain of the warship Setten. Welcome to my ship." Stated Dilos, once B’Elanna came to a halt before him. "Now tell me small warrior, who is it that has managed to drift into our space and insult a fine officer in such a short time?" he asked with exaggerated politeness.
B’Elanna knew that this was a challenge all by itself. If they felt she wasn’t who she said she was then they would lose everything on the spot. Before they would accept her story they would first have to accept her credentials. She decided to tell the truth.
"I am B’Elanna Torres, daughter of Miral, of the House of Krevas hereditary bodyguards to the Emperor of Kronos, and engineer aboard the starship Voyager." She answered.
"House of Krevas? Kronos? Never heard of them, or this Voyager for that matter." Dilos stated nonchalantly. ‘Maybe if she trips herself up now I can claim them both.’ Dilos thought to himself.
"We’re from the alpha quadrant. My ship, Voyager, was brought here by the caretakers array a few years ago, we’ve been trying to get home since and haven’t passed this area yet. As for my House, well Kronos is a long way away. All I can tell you is that my house is one of the major houses on Kronos. If you’d like, I’ll arrange for access to Voyagers database when they catch up to us, you can find out about it then." B’Elanna answered.
"No need," Dilos answered. "We have heard of the array. The caretaker took a small fleet to the array 80 years ago. Of 14 ships taken only two managed to return. Their story has become one of the greatest epics among our people. It is an honour to meet someone who has traveled the same route as those brave warriors. Now, tell me how was it with the Kazon? How did you manage to get......" and leading the way Dilos and B’Elanna walked amiably along the corridors discussing the various adventures resulting from the caretakers interference.
Seven, Harry and Tom followed behind and tried their best to fall into the roles that had been chosen for them. Behind them all, marched the soldiers that had greeted them with weapon muzzles on their arrival. Obviously the Bidelli did not trust easily.
Finally reaching a door, Dilos motioned for B’Elanna to enter. Inside was a large room. The only things in it were rows of benches and racks of weapons lining the walls. The rest of the room was open with a large circle marked on the floor. With feigned disinterest B’Elanna watched as the soldiers moved in to take seats on the benches beside other crew who had already arrived and were already seated around the large room.
"This is our arena." Dilos announced proudly. "Since you are not of our people, I will explain the rules. You will each choose a weapon. As this is a blood challenge rather than a death challenge, you may not choose projectile or laser weapons. The marked circle is the fighting area. The first to fall or step out of the circle is the loser. If you are rendered unconscious or surrender you also lose. Slaves and property of the loser are given to the victor. Do you understand B’Elanna Torres?"
B’Elanna immediately answered "Yes. I understand. Let’s do this." ‘He forgot to mention that as a foreign warrior I also count as property if I lose’ B’Elanna thought.
With a wide grin, she quickly moved to the weapons rack and chose a medium length curved sword. With a quick nod to Seven she entered the ring and waited for Koron.
Taking her cue from B’Elanna, Seven motioned to Tom and Harry to sit on the floor in front of the nearest bench while she herself took a seat on the bench. Her expression did not change as she watched the larger Koron select a long sword from the rack and approach the middle of the ring where B’Elanna waited. Harry and Tom on the other hand were not quite so successful, but with luck their fidgeting and nervousness would not be noticed.
Their lack of control was indeed not noticed as Koron, who had been glowering and silent since the group came aboard, suddenly let out a ferocious howl and ran full speed at B’Elanna. Even Seven gasped, however quietly, at the speed of the attack.
B’Elanna was prepared for such a tactic. She had expected such a move from the very beginning. Feeling the familiar battle lust rising, B’Elanna let it have its way as she gracefully sidestepped and Koron ran harmlessly past.
He almost lost then and there, as he came to the very edge of the ring, before managing to halt his headlong rush. He had expected B’Elanna as a smaller, and female, opponent to be easily taken by the maneuver. When he turned around to come at her again, what he found was a grinning Klingon.
"You can do better than that Koron." B’Elanna teased as she waited for him to attack again.
This time Koron moved in slowly and the two circled the ring looking for an opening or weakness. Koron with his greater height and longer weapon tried to take swipes from the safety of his longer reach, preventing B’Elanna from returning the strikes.
B’Elanna with her shorter and lighter weapon as well as her natural speed was able to easily deflect each blow.
After a few minutes of futile slashing, Koron was taken by surprise as B’Elanna easily stepped into his defense and with an upward slash put a shallow cut across the taller mans chest before he was able to step back. A muffled gasp rose from the Bidelli watching. They had not expected the small warrior to draw first blood. Neither had Koron. Redoubling his effort he increased the strength and frequency of his slashes hoping to wear down the small woman.
He was in for another surprise. As he began to feel the strain of keeping up the attack his opponent was still breathing easy and seeming to enjoy the exercise. Suddenly, he was again marked by the Klingons blade.
B’Elanna found that she was enjoying the contest. Thanks to Sevens advice and her own Klingon strength and speed, this was more of an exercise than a fight that would decide the fate of the entire group. Koron was good, nowhere near as good as she was, but he was a trained fighter. B’Elanna quickly gave up trying to control her Klingon side. As much as she needed to win, she also needed to prove herself as a warrior. How better than to let the fierce Klingon side have its way. With a grin and a growl B’Elanna began an attack of her own.
The larger Koron was now sweating heavily and his control was slipping by the second. Each mistake, and they were becoming plentiful now, was marked with a trail of blood.
Koron bleeding and enraged, could not believe that he was losing and losing badly, to someone not only smaller but female as well. Though his people treated men and woman with equality, it was rare for a woman to make serious advancement in the military arts. Pregnancy and child rearing were highly rated and most women left the military once they became pregnant, as being a warrior and raising warriors carried equal honor. Only a handful of women in all the Bidelli worlds had accumulated the necessary skills to beat someone who had fought his way to officer rank.
Koron, since earning officer rank, had never been beaten by any woman and the sting of it was affecting his judgment.
Slash and counter slash continued with B’Elanna landing more and more strikes. She was getting cocky and she knew it, as she taunted Koron into making mistakes and taking risks. B’Elanna shook her head to clear a little of the battle lust. Seeing Koron so out of control served to return B’Elanna to herself. This was about her winning against Koron, not humiliating him. She had enjoyed herself immensely and was not about to deny it. She had obviously proved that win or lose she was a warrior, judging by the looks she was receiving from the other Bidelli present. But now it was time to end it or, warrior or not, she would have no honor here. A clean win was honorable, taunting and tormenting a weaker opponent was not. So, with a final shove Koron found himself flat on his back just outside the ring.