Category: Voyager, Paris/Torres friendship/UST, ficlet
Spoilers: Set sometime after "State of Flux" in season 1 or season 2.
Summary: She's got better things to do. Really.
He's begging. Begging. If ever in her life B'Elanna Torres thought that seeing a grown man beg her for something would be fun or -- God forbid -- sexy, she was wrong.
It's damned annoying.
"Come onnnn, it'll be fun!"
That, from the mouth of Tom Paris, is like a warp-powered sign that she is probably not going to want to do whatever it is, and that Harry might talk her into it anyway, and then she'll lose a whole night to tagging along and making fun of them both.
And she has better things to do. She does. The warp manifolds will be due for scheduled maintenance in a few weeks and, well, there are always consoles that could use a little polishing.
"I'm not interested," she says, punctuating her statement by shoving his shoulder to push him out of the way of the antimatter regulation display. 98% efficiency, green lights across the board.
"How do you know you're not interested until you try? Come on, we need a fourth for the program."
"Use a hologram." She pauses, and curiosity gets the better of her. "Who's the third?" Normally he and Harry are alone in their holographic exploits, unless they're galivanting around with the Delaney twins, and in those instances, B'Elanna's not invited.
"Sandy Markham. Stellar Cartography. She cut Harry's hair last week."
That's weird. "Why doesn't he use the holo-barber like everyone else?"
Tom opens his mouth, probably to say something probably indecent about Sandy Markham, but thinks better of it. B'Elanna's well aware that Ensign Markham's assets have been a topic of the occasional synthehol-helped conversation in Sandrine's late at night, and she rolls her eyes at him for whatever he was thinking.
"She is not Harry's type."
"I didn't say she was."
Oh, gross. But then, given the hairdresser's reputation, B'Elanna isn't totally surprised that she is Paris' type. And if the man is seriously asking her along to entertain Harry Kim while he takes Ensign Markham -- or anyone, for that matter -- on a cheesy holodeck date, he's got another thing coming.
"But she likes skiing," he says.
"Is that a metaphor for something?"
Tom mocks a hurt look, but B'Elanna ignores him, turning back to her readouts. Propulsion, navigation, energy conservation -- all functioning at near-peak efficiency. She eyes the console suspiciously. The equipment never functions this well all at once.
The damned ship's in league with Tom Paris. That has to be it.
"You don't know how to ski, do you."
He's baiting her, and damn him, it works before she realizes it. "I can ski circles around you. I just have more important things to do." And she doesn't particularly see the point. Skiing is something you do if you need to get from place to place on an ice-bound planet. It's the sort of skill one aquires to avoid dying; in B'Elanna's world, there is absolutely no reason to go anywhere below freezing for fun. And she realizes something else: "Besides, you don't need four people to ski."
"Sure you do. Harry'll be talking with Sandy all night -- they're friends, before you get all judgmental -- and the program has two-person chairlifts. It'd be boring by myself."
She looks up from her readouts -- still all functioning, so no technological excuse out of this -- and scrutinizes him for any hint of lasciviousness.
She doesn't find any, and the man isn't exactly known around the ship for being subtle, but she still feels a little strange about all this, like he's asking her out on a double date.
Which he wouldn't do if he knows what's good for him, so he probably isn't. He and Harry bug her to go places with them all the time, and once she got over the idea that they were all pity Your-Best-Friend-Turned-Out-To-Be-A-Card
"I am not judgmental."
Paris has some sense of self-preservation, so he lets that one slide. "C'mon, Torres. Just give it a try."
"Not a chance, Paris."
He leans one hip on the edge of her console, blocking her from her work. He smirks, and there's the hint of lechery that she's been waiting for. "We can start on the bunny slopes..."
She's prevented from killing him by Lieutenant Carey. "Hey, are you talking about skiing?"
"Well, I was," B'Elanna snaps.
Paris mugs innocence. "Yeah, Harry designed this new program. It's got elements of one of Tuvok's wilderness training scenarios, actually, but we added in a lodge and... well, more powder and fewer wild animals. It was quite a trick to get a ski lift operational, too."
Carey looks suitably impressed. "I was on the Academy downhill ski team. Mind some company?"
"Sure, come along. Lieutenant Torres isn't interested," Paris says, without even a trace of disappointment, and B'Elanna glares. Even though she has no interest in skiing, especially skiing with Tom Paris, it's her invitation to refuse, and... well, it's just rude to replace her so quickly after she's said no.
Not that she cares one way or the other, of course.
"I get off at 1700," Carey says.
"Perfect. Grab a bite, we're hitting the slopes at 1830." Paris swipes Carey on the shoulder and heads for the turbolift.
Carey wanders off to do polish a console somewhere, and B'Elanna glares at the peak-efficiency readouts in front of her and contemplates how nice it would be to shove both Paris and Carey head-first into a mound of snow.
She hates skiing anyway.
It's Tom Paris, behind her again, and she just about jumps ten feet.
He grins a little too widely at her obvious startle reflex. Clearly, he doesn't know how close he came to being reflexively decked.
"Skiing's pretty fun with five, too."