Title: Moments In Time 2: Soul's Home

Primary Author Name: Lara Bee and Macx

Email: lara_bee@lycos.com and mailto:macx@nexgo.de

Website: http://home.arcor.de/macx/enterprise/enterprise.html and http://home.arcor.de/macx/index.html

Date: 07/06/02

Category: Slash

Rating: PG-13

Pairing: Tucker/Reed

Series Title: Relived

Sequel to: Moments In Time 1: Proximity

Summary: Trip and Malcolm run into someone from Malcolm's past.

"Hi, handsome. Long time no see."

Malcolm felt a hand slipping around his waist, another one cupping his neck, and he was pushed back against the wall while a hard body pressed against him. A pair of lips sought out his mouth in a fervent kiss. Startled by the unexpected erotic attack, Reed stiffened for a moment, his gasp giving his assailant the chance to slip his tongue into his mouth. After a split second of dumbfounded shock he realized what was going on, and his heart skipped a beat in utter shock.


Bloody Hell!

The bar was one of the more lively ones, decorated in the style of a an old Irish pub. A live band played in one corner, there was a vid screen mounted against the back wall, showing a soccer match, and the smell of warm food and beer mixed with the scent of the old wooden tables and stools. Two waitresses controlled the crowd, together with the barkeep who kept refilling glasses with beer and nonalcoholic substances.

Trip sipped at his cold beer, looking around for his lover who had gone to get some munchies, and grinned at the scene that was enfolding not far from him. Two men, entangled in what looked like a passionate embrace, the larger blond one obviously trying to perform a tonsillectomy on the other. Except the body of the smaller, dark haired man became rigid all of a sudden and Trip almost spewed his drink onto the table when he realized that the man in question was Malcolm.

His lover Malcolm.

Being thoroughly kissed by another man, and from the looks of it they seemed to know each other. Well.

Trip slammed his glass back onto the table, anger rushing through him, closely followed and then passed by jealousy. He stood abruptly, fighting the urge to rush over and slam the man against the next best wall, telling him something or other about violating private property.

That stopped him short and Tucker drew a shuddering breath, screwing his eyes shut for a moment.

Hell, what was he thinking? Malcolm was his lover, not his property! Since when was he so possessive? Trip clenched his teeth.

Calm down, he told himself. No need to repeat the same mistake like with the Efil engineer. That had been bad enough already.

He opened his eyes again, feeling another tremor, which was a mixture of still simmering anger, an even stronger bout of jealousy, and the first inklings of embarrassment.

Malcolm was very well capable of defending himself. He was the chief of security onboard. And from what Trip could see as he came nearer, he was doing just that at the moment, having a hold on the other man's wrist that made him cringe, face showing a bolt of pain. Reed's own expression was one of cold fury, laid in with embarrassment and something Trip couldn't really determine what it was.

The engineer cleared his throat and stepped closer, keeping the expression on his face carefully neutral.


Reed turned his face towards him, and Trip thought he saw a flicker of something flare in those expressive, storm-cloud eyes he loved so much. Something like—fear? Trip blinked at that thought. Malcolm afraid—of him? There was a quick stab in his stomach as he watched Reed pale slightly, lips parting in a little gasp.

"I think he got the point," Trip said calmly, nodding to the vice like grip Malcolm still had on the other man's wrist.


Malcolm let go, looking somewhat guiltily at the floor. The man was rubbing his mistreated wrist, smiling faintly.

"No harm done, 'cept ta my self-esteem," he said wryly, clearly American. "Should've foreseen somethin' like that, since we haven't seen each other for longer now."

"How long exactly?" Trip asked levelly, the jealousy hissing to the forefront once more.

"More than three years, Trip," Malcolm replied, shooting him a short unreadable glance. There was an odd note in his voice, something that spoke of hidden fear and trepidation. He was expecting a reaction and steeling himself for the worst possible one.

Tucker nodded, doing the math. More than three years, longer than they knew each other now, were a couple. Before Enterprise had left Earth.

"Trip Tucker," he stated, stretching out a hand.

"Jeff Fowler."

His hand was taken, a tight warm grip, Trip noticed, giving the man a much closer look now. About his size, tanned, a light blond hair color, and vivid, dark blue eyes. He was muscular but slender, dressed in casual clothes, and smiling amiably. Trip could almost understand Malcolm. The man had something. Fowler was inspecting him, looking from Malcolm to Trip and back, obviously registering Trip's rather possessive demeanor, the way he stood close to his lover. Oh well, Malcolm was his after all…

There it was again. The claim he felt he had on the armory officer, the possessive feelings…Malcolm Reed belonged to him. Trip wondered where it came from, when it had started. He wasn't reacting aggressively on it, but he would tell Fowler in unmistakable words that the man he had just assaulted belonged to one Trip Tucker.

"Ya two?" Fowler asked, and smiled broadly at Malcolm's short nod. "For longer, hm? That explains it."

"Huh?" Reed stuttered.

This time the smile held something sad.

"Ya look great, Malcolm. Real great. Positively glowin'. Was always wonderin' what ya were lookin' for. Seems ya found it in the end," Jeff drawled, grinning.

"What do you mean?"

"Malcolm, ya were a restless soul back then. Always lookin'. I tried ta be what yer were lookin' for, but—I couldn't give it to ya. I'm happy somebody else could."

"Jeff, what…?" Malcolm stammered.

Jeff gave him a lopsided grin and a short slap on the forearm when he stepped past the bewildered man. "Home, Malcolm. Ya found home." His eyes came to rest on Trip, who stood silently behind his lover. "Take care. Won't see ya around." And without another word he was gone.

Tucker watched him go, saw him meet someone else, laughing as they greeted each other. Then the crowd swallowed them.

"Nice guy," Trip remarked, slipping an arm around Malcolm's still rigid figure. "Not Starfleet, I assume?"

A weak shake of the head.

"Now, c'mon back to the table. Mah beer's getting' warm."

Malcolm didn't move. The tension in the slender frame was almost palpable.


"Trip, I…that was…" the dark-haired man stammered, desperately searching for words.

"A former lover, I assume. Nice guy, as I said," Tucker said casually. "You've got good taste. Now…"

"Trip?" Reed gasped.


Malcolm held him back, looking at him with wide eyes, confusion darkening the gray orbs. Trip met the gaze calmly, showing openly what he felt.

"Thank you," came the soft whisper.

"What for?"

"For not being jealous."

Trip smiled. "Oh, but I am, don't get me wrong here. You're a damn handsome man, Mal, and that guy was a looker as well. But I know you, and I trust you. He may have been with you once, but he isn't now. And I have something he never had." Reed swallowed, a flicker of something showing on his features. "Which is?"

"Your love. You. I have Malcolm Reed."

Trip leaned over to kiss his lover gently, sensing the hesitation and uncertainty Malcolm was radiating, and he tried to wipe that away. He held him until he felt his lover relax and melt into his embrace.

"I love you, Malcolm Reed, for three wonderful years now. And I know you love me. Fowler was right; at least for my part here. I found a home with you, and I hope that goes for you as well. I knew from the start there had been others for you," Trip murmured into one ear. "Hell, considering the way we got to know each other, there had definitely been others. Been no virgin myself."

The last came in a teasing tone, but Malcolm stiffened slightly, knowing Trip was referring to their first meeting in a gay bar where Malcolm had picked him up—and their first night together, when neither one had bothered to ask for the other one's name. It had been one hell of a shock for both men to realize only a few hours later that they not only were both Starfleet officers but serving on the same ship. Trip being Malcolm's superior on top of that.

Yes, there had been problems. Big and apparently insurmountable problems, but they had made it. Their relationship had survived the odds and had come out stronger. Trip believed that something bound them together, that they belonged to each other. He didn't know what it was, and he didn't question it.


Trip hugged him. "Shush, calm down. It's alright. I know, I was there, too, remember? I don't care for the past, love, I just care for the here and now. Besides, wanna hear something I learned from my mother? No need to fear predecessors, but beware of successors."

"There won't be one," Malcolm said seriously. "There's only you, Trip."

"Same here." Tucker grinned brightly and then stole a kiss. "Now, about my beer…whoa!"

Reed had grabbed him, pulled him down into a wet, deep kiss. He released him abruptly and Trip inhaled deeply, feeling a bit dizzy. Damn, even after three years Malcolm managed to render him into puddle with kiss attacks like that.

"Only you," Reed repeated, then smiled. "Love you."

Trip mirrored the smile with a brilliant one of his own. They walked back to their table, where Trip's beer had grown warm already. Around them, the pub's clientele enjoyed their off time, just like the two Starfleet officers.

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