50 Ways to Leave Your Lover
Summary: Kathryn Janeway can’t help breaking hearts, but at least she never does it the same way twice.
Characters: Janeway, Torres
Disclaimer: All characters belong to Paramount. I'm just having a little twisted fun with them.
Notes: When I posted A Long Journey on tumblr, @caladeniablue asked 'Fic to go with this?' and it got me thinking. This is the result. (If you have a request for a lover Kathryn could leave, email me!)
three | B'Elanna Torres
“It’s because I’m too much for you, isn’t it? Physically, I mean. Because I hurt you.”
B’Elanna hunches on the vast white bed, sheet clutched to her chest, her assertion at odds with how fragile she looks.
Kathryn pauses in the act of fastening one of the many buttons on her ridiculous bodice. The mistake she has always made with B’Elanna, she realises, is forgetting just how much vulnerability that Klingon toughness shields.
She, of all people, should know how deceptive such appearances can be.
“No, B’Elanna,” she says gently, moving to the bed, cupping B’Elanna’s cheek in her hand. “This isn’t about you.”
“That’s not how it feels.” Her voice breaks on the last word. “Captain, I just –”
And there it is. Kathryn drops her hand as though it’s burnt, and B’Elanna’s words stumble to a stop.
“Is that why?” White teeth dig into the full lower lip and Kathryn can’t help gazing at the soft indent, recalling the way it feels to bite into all that lushness. “Because I can’t –”
“Say my name?” Kathryn finishes for her.
It’s far more complicated than that, of course, but Kathryn’s priority here is a clean, quick exit.
“I should never have started this,” she explains. “I can’t be involved with a member of my crew. I’m sorry, B’Elanna.”
She lets her gaze linger on her former lover’s smooth bare shoulders one last time, and then she turns away.
“Computer, end program,” B’Elanna says from behind her, and Fair Haven shimmers into nothingness around them.
If she looks back, all she’ll see is one more lover she’s left with nothing, so Kathryn keeps walking.
B’Elanna’s voice stops her at the holodeck doors.
“That’s not it at all, is it?”
“What do you mean?” Kathryn asks without turning.
“You’re not leaving me because I’m too rough with you. You’re leaving because I’m not forceful enough.”
Kathryn escapes before B’Elanna can strip her any more naked than she already feels.