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To Lose Her Now - Part 2

During the next week, Voyager encountered a new race of aliens called the Sentakians, who were willing to trade some dylithium crystals for information on Voyagerís warp drive. Captain Janeway was more than happy to comply. However, the Sentakian ambassador would only negotiate with her, being very untrusting of her entire crew. Therefore, he would not allow any other crew members to accompany her on the trip to their home planet to exchange. Tuvok expressed his concerns, as did Chakotay.

"This isnít a very good idea. I have a bad feeling about it," Chakotay protested.

"I would tend to agree, Captain. The Sentakian government could be plotting something," Tuvok added.

Kathryn smiled. "I assure you, gentlemen. Nothing is going to happen to me. Ambassador Segan has been nothing but kind and generous. Iíll be fine."

Tuvok opened his mouth to protest further, but Kathryn cut him off. "End of discussion. Dismissed."

Tuvok raised his eyebrow, then left the briefing room. Chakotay remained. If he couldnít convince her as her First Officer that this was a mistake, then he was going to give it a try as her husband.

"I said, ĎDismissedí, Commander," she told him, seeming annoyed at his remaining presence.

"The Commander has left. This is your husband, and he is begging you to reconsider."

"Why are you so concerned? Itís not like I havenít been on away missions before. It will just be an away team of one."

"Kathryn, why do you insist on making everything so difficult? I donít trust them. They seem too eager to meet with you. I...I canít explain why, but it all just seems..."

"Chakotay, you worry too much," she told him, taking his hands into hers. "I will be back before you know it. I promise."

There was no arguing with her. Chakotay knew that all too well. He finally nodded his head. "Okay, you win. But Iím holding you to your promise." She smiled, reaching up to caress his cheek.

Four days later, Chakotay sat in the Captainís ready room, reading over a few reports, when Tuvokís voice summoned him.

"Commander, Iíve have received a transmission from the Captain addressed to you. Audio only"

"Route it to her ready room."

"Commander, everything went well, and I will be leaving the Sentakian homeworld tomorrow morning. I will rendezvous with Voyager at 1000 hours. And Chakotay, please be sure to tell Samantha that Mommy will see her soon. Janeway out."

Chakotay felt a smile tug at his lips. Then he rose to go to the bridge and report the good news. His suspicions had been false, and a great weight lifted from his shoulders. Kathryn was coming home safely.

The next morning, however, as they neared the rendezvous point, Commander Chakotay felt a strange feeling come over him. Something wasnít right.

"Harry, any sign of the Captainís shuttlecraft?"

"Sensors are detecting nothing. She must be running late."

"Hold our position. Let me know the minute you pick up her signal. Iíll be in her ready room." Chakotay left again, still feeling that something had gone wrong.

One hour later, he re-emerged. Where the hell is she, he wondered.

"Tom, lay in a course for the Sentakian homeworld"

"Commander, we were under strict orders to stay away from their planet," Tuvok intervened.

"I didnít say that we were going to go there. But we should be able to find her between here and there," Chakotay retorted.

Tuvok agreed, and Tom piloted Voyager in the Sentakiansí direction. Harry continued scanning for the Captainís signal. Shortly into the trip, the young ensign spoke up.

"Commander, I think I found something. It appears to be...a debris field!"

"On screen!"

Harry was right. The viewscreen was flooded with bits and pieces of metal. One meandered by the screen, and Chakotay saw the name of the shuttlecraft imprinted on it. Corneilius. Kathrynís shuttlecraft.

"Any signs of her?" he asked, feeling a lump in his throat.

Harry hesitated. "Nothing, Sir."

Chakotay closed his eyes, trying to remain focused. "Beam what you can to the cargo bay, and have the Doctor meet me there. Tuvok, you have the bridge." With that, he left.

The bridge remained silent.

[ Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 ]
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