Title: Flagrante Delicto

Author: Kylie Lee and Tim Ruben

E-mail: KylieLee1000@hotmail.com and timruben@writeme.com

Authors' URLs: http://www.geocities.com/kylielee1000/ and http://members.tripod.com/enterpriseslash

Date: 09/04/02

Length: ~8,000 words

Fandom: Star Trek: Enterprise

Series: Under the Disco Ball

Previous story: Whisky on the Rocks

Pairing: A/T

Type: Slash M/M

Rating: NC-17

Summary: Only one person among the crew on shore leave doesn't know Jon and Trip are lovers, so they resolve to tell him. Except he finds out first. Oops.

Feedback: Yes, please.

Archive: The usual suspects can have it. You know who you are. If you aren't one of 'em, yes, you can archive, but please ask first.

Disclaimer: Original material copyright 2002 Kylie Lee and Tim Ruben. This is not an attempt to infringe on Paramount's copyright. No money changed hands. Etc.

Spoilers: None. This is a stand-alone fic.

Comments: Thanks to Kim for beta. She suggested Reed's rant.

"Oh, Jon. Yes. There."


"Quit it."


"Damn it! Stop that."

"You told me not to stop a moment ago."

"Then go back to doing what you were doing before, Cap'n. Please."

"Oh! You mean this?"

Trip Tucker's only response was a low groan.

"I'll take that as a yes."

Tucker watched as Jonathan Archer's head dipped down again. Jon's warm mouth enveloped his cock. He closed his eyes and thrust gently into Jon's mouth. Archer pressed his hips into the mattress, and the dildo inside Tucker brushed his prostate. He shivered in pleasure. He didn't want it to end. Then Jon's mouth left his cock and moved up his body, licking.

Jon had been tormenting him for a half hour—well, really the whole evening, because they had gone out to dinner with their crewmates and couldn't show even casual affection in public. Tucker had to admit that the affection they wanted to show each other was likely inappropriate in a public setting. Even though Hoshi Sato and Travis Mayweather both knew that Trip and Jon were lovers—and had been since before they were posted to Enterprise—Malcolm Reed didn't know. But tonight Jon had taken a page from Trip's book and became a master tease. He'd cupped Trip's dick through his trousers under the cover of the tablecloth. He'd brushed his thigh against Trip's. He'd stroked Trip's knee and over to the inside of Trip's leg. He'd casually put his arm against the back of Trip's chair so he could lean over and talk to Hoshi behind Trip's head. He'd actually played footsie. They'd made out like teenagers in the stall of the restaurant's bathroom for about two minutes and gotten so hard that it took ten minutes and a lot of cold water to get back to their usual "I'm on vacation" state of semiarousal, then had to make up a story about why they were gone so long and why Archer's hair was wet. It seemed that the captain had really let loose on this trip.

Now, at last, was the culmination of a night of teasing. Trip and Archer had spent every night of shore leave together. The extra privacy afforded by the hotel, by everyone having separate rooms on separate floors, by there being no roommate around; the large beds; the hedonistically large whirlpool tub in the bathroom, just the right size for two—it was getting so that Tucker was beginning to resent leaving his room. He was pretty sure he'd much rather be his captain's sex slave for the entire duration of shore leave, but they'd filled their days with art galleries, shopping, and sightseeing and their evenings with long dinners and dancing at nightclubs. In fact, two days ago, they'd had quite a lot of fun on the dance floor.

Archer's mouth wandered back down Trip's body. "God, you're gorgeous," Jon breathed. "Here?"


"Yes, what?"

"Yes, sir?"

"Try again." There was no rank in the bedroom. That's what Jon always said.

Archer ran a hand down Tucker's leg. Trip groaned. "Yes, please," he tried. He'd already seen what would happen if he called Jon "Cupcake" during sex, and he didn't care to repeat the experience. "Yes, Jon, oh god, yes!"

"Much better. Tell me when you're going to come."

Archer's hands pushed him down into the mattress again, and again, the dildo stroked. Jon deliberately set a rhythm. When Trip began bucking and thrusting, Jon encouraged him with little noises, hanging onto Trip's cock, mouth hungry. Tucker felt the pleasure build, and when he knew he couldn't stand it any more, he said, "I'm coming!" As he circled his ass, thrusting onto the dildo, thrusting into Jon's mouth, just about ready to come, Archer activated the dildo's remote, and the slight buzzing sensation deep inside him sparked a pulsing, throbbing orgasm. Trip came hard, grinding his ass into the mattress, spurting into Jon's mouth over and over again.

When he was done, he lay back, inert, still pressing his butt down, feeling the slight buzz against his prostate. For a long few seconds, it felt wonderful, like he could get hard again, but suddenly, it was too much sensation, and he groaned and rolled onto his side. Archer deactivated the device and withdrew it, then put his arms around Trip, hands stroking.

"Was that nice?" Jon asked a few minutes later.

"Oh, god. Nice. Yes. It was very, very nice." His orgasm had had the quality of spiritual transcendence.

"Because you looked like you were enjoying it."

"I enjoyed it. Oh, god." His sphincter fluttered, and he pushed his ass back into Archer's body. Archer was hard. "I want you to come inside me," he invited.



"You'll be sore," Jon demurred. "We've been…busy lately." His breath was warm against Trip's neck.

"Haven't noticed any problems so far," Trip said. "It's okay. Really. Do you want something inside you?" Trip had purchased a vibrator-dildo in a little shop he'd run across yesterday and had sprung it on his lover tonight. Jon wasn't really one for toys, but he'd acquiesced when Trip had asked Jon to slide the dildo inside him a few minutes ago.

Jon hesitated.

"Just give it a try," Trip encouraged him. "I know you don't like props, but they can be a lot of fun."

"No," Jon decided, "although it was fun seeing you come so hard." He leaned down and kissed his lover. "They're really not my style. I'd rather have you inside me. Your hand."

Trip grinned. "You got it," he said, reaching for the lube.

Archer grinned back. "Oh, you're going to kill me."

"I aim to please."

Trip squirted a generous amount of lube onto his right hand, then spread it around. He rolled his lover onto his back and began kissing and teasing Jon, focusing on his chest, upper arms, and nipples, tracing slick patterns with the lube on Jon's skin. He worked his way down to Jon's rock-hard cock and sucked it into his mouth. The heat of Jon's cock and groin pulled him in. He ran his mouth up and down until Jon put his hand on Trip's head. He released Jon's dick and ran his lube-covered hand up and down, covering Jon's hardness with shiny slickness.

"On your knees," Trip said, moving to the side to give Jon room.

Jon groaned as he obeyed.

Tucker smiled when presented with Jon's ass. He added more lube to his right hand, wrist, and forearm, then ran his index and middle fingers up and down Jon's crack, gradually pushing in deeper between his butt cheeks, until he was pushing hard, raking Jon, as he stroked. He did this until he felt Jon tense up. He paused a long few moments. The next time his fingers trailed down, he followed the curve of Jon's asshole, and he inserted two fingers. He felt Jon squeeze his fingers, and Jon gasped. Trip pushed in the small of Jon's back with his free hand, keeping Jon quiet and steady, while working his fingers in and out. He added more fingers as Jon relaxed, keeping his range of motion small. Next he put his thumb in. He carefully slid in the rest of his hand, feeling Jon's tightness and warmth push hard around him, and Trip smoothly stroked in and out as Jon's breathing resolved into panting. He reached around with his free hand and stroked Jon's slick cock. There was sticky liquid at the tip, and Trip spread it around.

"Oh, god, Trip," Jon whispered. He arched his back and butted his ass back, trying for yet more sensation.

Trip released Jon's dick and repositioned himself behind his lover. He began working Jon in earnest. He pushed his hand in, rotating slightly, and pulled out, increasing the range of motion until the tight ring of Jon's sphincter stroked from his forearm to his wrist. Jon was panting, and when Trip's hand brushed Jon's prostate, Jon would moan. The sounds of pleasure contrasted with the sucking sounds as Trip's lubed hand moved in and out.

"Faster," Jon said. "Oh, god. Faster. Harder."

His voice became a continuous groan as Trip complied. Jon started bucking back and forth, so Trip came up slightly on his knees in order that Jon would hit Trip's hip on his backward movement, to give Jon something to push against.

"Jesus, Trip," Jon said, and Trip knew Jon was close. "Oh, please. Please."

Trip steadied Jon as Jon's hand came around and grasped his own cock, Trip keeping the in-and-out motions as rhythmic and steady as he could. Jon worked his cock, pushing his ass back hard, rotating it slightly, pushing one butt cheek hard against the edge of Trip's hip. It only took a minute for the sensation to reach overload and for Jon to come.

Trip listened to Jon moan deep in his throat. He loved it when Jon came like this: so excited that he begged for it. He felt Jon's sphincter squeeze and release around his forearm as Jon orgasmed. Jon's movements became jerky, but he continued pushing and rotating. Finally, he simply pushed against Trip's hip, gasping for air. Jon released his cock and settled his weight onto all fours, lowered his head, and panted.

Trip slowly withdrew his hand. When he was all the way out, he knelt behind Jon and used both hands to squeeze Jon's ass cheeks together. He leaned down and kissed Jon right above the crack of his butt, then licked, then gently bit, as he squeezed.

"Did you enjoy that?" Trip asked. "Because it looked like you were enjoying yourself." He bit again.

Jon simply groaned, and Trip smiled. Trip released his lover, who rolled onto his back. Jon's slick cock was at half-mast, and on his stomach were beads of cum.

"I think we need to hit the shower," Trip said, spreading the cum around Jon's stomach and abdomen.

Jon said, "Jesus," and Trip knew it would be a few minutes, so he settled himself next to Jon, settling on one arm next to his lover and surveying the captain. Jon had called Tucker "gorgeous," but Trip happened to think the adjective described Jon. His well-muscled body, his brown hair, those extraordinary eyes—well, "gorgeous" was as good a word as any. He'd gotten lucky. Jon was handsome, smart, and very passionate, and it was not too much to say that they adored each other. It was the first relationship in years that wasn't all about sex; granted, when they got it on, they almost exploded, but they had been friends for years before they got involved and knew each other very well. Shore leave, however, had only highlighted the restrictions in their relationship. Over the course of the last few days, Tucker had realized that he wanted to acknowledge their relationship publicly. Secrecy seemed disrespectful to what they thought of each other, although it had seemed like a good idea at the time because Jon was Trip's boss. It helped that Hoshi and Travis had found out. But then again, Jon was captain and had to be professional all day long, no matter if he was off duty or not.

Finally, Jon said, "That beats a vibrator any day," and Trip laughed. "No, really," Jon said, his eyes still glazed with pleasure. "I'd rather have your touch, have you inside me."

The next kiss was lingering. "Any time," Trip said. "Are you ready to clean up?"

Jon nodded, eyes not leaving Trip's. "Kiss me first," he suggested, so Trip did. He knew exactly how Jon felt right now: sex between them was sometimes fun, sometimes tender, sometimes passionate, sometimes hard, and sometimes, rarely, angry. But today, sex bonded them. Today, sex was the way they told each other how much they cared. Jon felt that spiritual transcendence too.

"After we clean up, we can make out," Trip said.

Jon laughed. "Make out? You sound like a teenager. But that sounds like fun."

Trip rolled off the bed. "Sometimes making out leads to sleeping," he said. "Are we going to bed anytime soon?" It was really late.

"Sometimes making out leads to sex," Jon said suggestively, following Trip to the bathroom.

"Again?" Trip laughed.

"You never know," Jon said, and Trip turned on the shower. When it was hot enough, he stepped in, pulling Jon in after him. He touched his lips to Jon's, and they lost themselves in the warmth of the other, the water beating down on them.


They had a hard time getting out of bed the next morning. They had been slowly waking up when Malcolm Reed called Trip's room—far too early in the morning for Trip's taste. He invited him to breakfast with himself and Sato. "I can't get hold of the captain or Travis," Reed told Trip. "I left messages, though."

"Maybe they're in the shower or something," Trip said. "I'll stop by their rooms on my way over and bring them along if I find them." He pushed Jon's head away from his stomach with a mouthed "stop that"; Jon's kisses had turned into tickles.

"Great. Thanks."

Trip and Jon stopped by Travis' room on their way down to the lobby, but no one seemed to be in. They met Reed and Sato and walked over to a quaint café that Trip's guidebook rated high. Their server, a young woman with choppy hair with interesting blue streaks, hovered anxiously as they ordered and ate. It quickly became clear that she was taken with Reed. If Malcolm so much as looked over a shoulder, she rushed to the table to see what he wanted. Reed treated her with British courtesy and ignored the reaction of his shipmates.

"Anybody know where Travis got to?" Reed asked when their plates were cleared.

"Travis is keeping amused with his redhead," Sato said.

"Oh, and how do you know this?" Reed asked.

"I saw them in the hallway this morning, leaving his room together. I may have overheard a little something about a day trip to see Wollis Falls."

"*May* have overheard?" Trip said.

"I have very good hearing," Sato said primly. Her ears were famous on the bridge for picking things out of the com transmissions. She'd saved crew members' lives with those ears of hers.

"I've read about the falls," Jon put in. "They're supposed to be beautiful."

"Well, then, why don't we go and see for ourselves?" Reed asked.

"Malcolm," Trip said warningly. "Are you spying on Ensign Mayweather?"

"He's supposed to be a friend of mine. I hear from Hoshi that he's seeing someone?"

"I don't think it's a *seeing,*" Sato said. "Definitely not a *seeing.*"

Trip added, "More like a feeling, a touching."

"Trip, Hoshi," Jon warned.

Trip and Sato collapsed into giggles. They subsided briefly. Then Sato said, "A stroking, a petting," and Trip immediately came up with, "A kissing, a f—"

Before he could go on, Jon said, "*Trip!*", voice utterly shocked, and Hoshi and Trip collapsed again. Jon and Malcolm exchanged patient looks as Hoshi and Trip regained control.

Trip managed to make his face serious. "I would hate to imply that our helmsman is into one-night stands or something."

"Clearly it's a relationship," Sato said. "One of those 'special' two-day relationships. I know all about those."

"Oh, do you now?" Reed said, amused.

"What would hold Travis's interest?" Sato continued. "Let's see. She's probably a certified pilot, but she is also an exotic dancer, and in her spare time, she drag races around moons."

"Would you stop it," Jon ordered. "Malcolm here has invited us to go with him to visit Wollis Falls. I for one intend to take him up on it. We leave the planet tomorrow after lunch, so this is the last day for a real day trip."

Trip nodded. He'd seen pictures of the falls in his tourist guide, which he'd been perusing over breakfast, and they were spectacular. "I'm in," he said. "Hoshi?"

Sato extended her hand, palm down, and waved it from side to side, indicating she was uncertain. "I don't know," she said. "I haven't seen the outdoor sculpture garden yet."

"Is there a description of the falls in that guidebook?" Reed asked, indicating Trip's slim, glossy commercial padd.

Trip pushed it over to him. "Yup," he said.

"May I borrow this for a while?"


Malcolm flipped through the index, found the entry, linked to it, and quickly skimmed it. "Looks like from where we are, it takes two hours to get there by public transportation. And it looks like the route there is scenic in its own right." He considered briefly. "So if we leave at ten, we'll be there in time for lunch. We can have a picnic by the falls, or we could eat at the restaurant that overlooks it. What do you think?"

"I think a picnic sounds more romantic," Sato said. She gave Trip and Jon a meaningful glance, one that Malcolm totally missed as he paged through the guidebook. Trip winked at her, and they started giggling again.

Reed looked up, surprised. "What?" he asked. "What's so funny?"

"Nothing," Sato said, voice strangled.

"I don't know what is with you two today." Reed shook his head. "Thank heaven you don't do this while you're on duty." He pointed the guidebook at Sato for emphasis. "You're going. No debate. And you're in charge of the picnic lunch. Got it?"

"Yes, 'captain,'" Sato said.

Trip laughed. "Jon, I think Malcolm here is trying to steal your job."

Reed blushed. "Sir, I didn't mean…" he began.

Jon grinned. "Don't worry about it, Malcolm." He patted Reed on the back. "Sorry—I mean, 'captain.'"

Reed laughed as he returned to his perusal of the guidebook. "We can have dinner at the restaurant if we stay that long. And we should all wear hiking gear and comfortable shoes. There are some nice trails there."

"I think I'll go back to the hotel and change. Should we meet in the lobby at ten?" Jon stood up.

Trip stood up too. "I'll walk over with you," he said.

"That leaves us with the bill," Reed pointed out.

"Exactly," Jon said. "Thanks for breakfast. 'Captain.'"

Hoshi slid out of her chair, saying, "Gosh, I have to get going too. I have to arrange for lunch. Breakfast was delicious, Malcolm." She bent down, lightly kissing Reed on the cheek, and Reed looked surprised.

"I'm a generous man," Malcolm said. "See you at ten." He settled back and waved at them as they exited, then turned his attention back to the guidebook. The server hovered solicitously at his elbow as she refilled his cup; she blushed at his smile, and Reed pretended not to notice.

Hoshi, Trip, and Jon stepped outside and stood together on the sidewalk. It was a beautiful sunny day. "Which way?" Trip asked Sato.

"I'm going to that little café on Bird Street," Sato decided. "They had a takeout menu posted that looked good." She cocked her head. "Look, when are you going to tell Malcolm? I feel sorry for him being left out."

"Tell him what?" Jon asked.

"She means, tell him about us," Trip said. "That we're lovers."

Jon sighed. "Do we have to?"

"Travis knows. Hoshi knows and Hoshi can't keep her mouth shut, so the entire ship is going to know within ten minutes of our getting back."

"It's true," Sato said regretfully. They all knew that wasn't true at all.

Trip hesitated, then plunged ahead. "Cap'n, I've been feeling weird about all the sneaking around we've been doing. I don't necessarily like tiptoeing down the corridors at two in the morning. I think we should tell Malcolm, and I think we should go ahead and let the rest of the ship know. We don't need to make an announcement, you know. One word to Elizabeth Cutler from Hoshi here, and the entire ship will know. Crewman Cutler can work that grapevine. Then all we have to do is not deny it."

Jon looked hesitant. "I don't know," he hedged. Trip said, "You're the captain, and all the crew wants is for you to be happy. And—you are happy with me, aren't you?"

"Don't be ridiculous. Of course I'm happy. I just don't think that my private life is any concern of my crew."

Hoshi shook her head. "Is this deliberate blindness?" she wondered, directing the question at Trip. "From a security standpoint alone, you should tell Malcolm. As for the rest of the crew—well, it's a small ship. I'm amazed you've kept it a secret as long as you have."

Jon crossed his arms, walling himself off from Trip and Hoshi. He was probably feeling beleaguered. "I'd like to keep my personal life personal," he said firmly.

"Oho," Trip said. "I see it all now. Somebody's chicken." Trip put his arms under his armpits and flapped them around like wings as he made chicken noises. Hoshi joined in.

Jon, exasperated, said, "You two look really stupid right now. Stop that! Cut it out!" Trip and Hoshi laughed, but stopped. Jon exhaled. "All right, I'll tell Malcolm. For security reasons. And you're right, it's a pain in the ass not to be able to hold your hand or kiss you in public. Hoshi can tell Crewman Cutler. Damn it."

"Aw, you love me, you really love me," Trip said, standing on his toes to kiss Jon lightly on the forehead. He clasped Jon's hand and squeezed, to take the sting out of the sarcasm. He knew Jon's capitulation went against Jon's instincts. He was doing it because Trip wanted him to, and they both knew it.

"That is so touching." Hoshi said, wiping away a tear. "God, I am such a wimp when it come to romance." She paused, then said brightly, "Well, enough of this. I'm off."

Trip put an arm around Jon, and Jon slid his arm around Trip's waist. "Let's go. See you at ten, Hoshi."

They walked right past the window of the restaurant, arms around each other, and looked inside as they passed. Trip saw Malcolm, sipping from a mug, ostentatiously engrossed in the guidebook. The server was staring at him longingly from across the room. No doubt Reed was trying to distance himself from her. Although she was cute in a punky way, she was much too young for Reed. Trip suppressed a grin.

The hotel was only a few minutes' walk away, but Jon wanted to buy a souvenir for his quarters. He liked to buy a little something from all the planets he visited, to remember them by. They found a little place that Hoshi had recommended that sold hand-thrown pottery, and Jon, with Trip's help, selected a blue-glazed pitcher with an abstract line drawing decorating it in darker blue. "I guess I could use it as a vase, or as a water pitcher," Jon said as he paid for it. The clerk wrapped it thoroughly in paper so it wouldn't break, and they stepped back out into the sunlight and started toward the hotel. "Trip, what did your mom first say when you told her we were dating?"

"She didn't like it," Trip said frankly. "She thought you were too old, and our difference in rank bothered her. But when she met you, she changed her mind."

"Was it hard, telling her?"

Trip shrugged. "Not really. But I'm pretty close to my family. They were all happy and excited once they met you. But I think they're amazed that we're still together." He didn't ask about Jon and his family. Jon didn't talk about his family much. "Why? Are you nervous about telling Malcolm?"

Jon nodded. "It's stupid," he confessed. "Malcolm is a professional. I'm telling him this as a professional courtesy. He'll just say, 'Thank you, sir,' and then he'll have a fit every time we go down on dangerous away missions together."

"He doesn't like it already, because I'm in command after T'Pol," Trip pointed out. "It's a bad idea to send all the commanding officers on the same away mission. So in fact, nothing will change."

"I didn't think of it that way," Jon said. "But after Malcolm, there's the crew. I like the grapevine idea, so we don't have to make an announcement, but I feel almost—almost sick about them knowing."

Trip reached out and clasped Jon's hand briefly, then released it. "It's okay," he said gently. "You know why I think you're nervous?"

"No, why?"

"Because you're afraid that the crew will see you as human, instead of as the captain. You're not afraid of their happiness or their disapproval. You're afraid of showing human weakness."

Jon nodded. "Yes, of course you're right." He hesitated. "It's just—it's just such a big thing. By telling them how I feel, I'm letting them in on my innermost feelings. That makes me vulnerable. As a captain, I prefer to be perceived as invulnerable. My innermost feelings are nobody's business. I've worked hard to maintain that professional distance."

They were at the foot of the steps leading up to the hotel. Trip pulled Jon up onto the steps and hugged him. "No one wants to hurt you," he said into Jon's hair. "No one is invulnerable, Jon, not even the fleet's best captain. Trust me. Everyone is going to be happy for you."

Jon hugged him tight, turned, and started up the steps. Jon held the door for Trip and followed him through into the foyer. "How much time do we have until ten?"

Trip checked. "About a half hour."

"Let's hurry up to your room, then." Although Jon had his own room, he had moved most of his things to Trip's suite instead.

Trip pushed a button to call the lift, his arm draped around Jon as they waited. He didn't offer to tell Reed himself, because it was really Jon's responsibility, and he also knew that Malcolm's reaction, whatever it was, would go a long way toward helping Jon overcome his fears. It was hard for him to understand Jon's reserve, but he respected it.

They stepped into the lift as it sighed open. The lifts at the hotel were ridiculously old and slow, but they were quaint. When the door had finally shut and Jon had pressed the ornate button to indicate the floor, Trip turned Jon to him, leaned up, and kissed him hard. Jon, surprised, kissed him back.

"What's that for?" Jon asked when Trip came up for air.

"Nothing," Trip said. He pushed Jon against the wall and kissed him again, his hands holding Jon's hips, keeping his lover firmly in place. "Just giving the security guys something to watch." He waved and smiled at the discreet camera pickup, then gave it an enthusiastic thumbs-up. He kissed Jon again.

"Well, then, let's make it good." Jon's free hand stroked Trip's ass, and he pulled Trip closer to him, one leg between Trip's.

Jon gently bit Trip's lower lip, and Trip groaned as he rubbed his groin against Jon's stomach. Jon's mouth drew him in. His body responded. He and Jon had been kissing for less than a minute, and already he felt like he was going to explode. When the lift door slid open, he and Jon stumbled out. Jon's hands were on the buttons of his shirt and their mouths were still locked together as they made their awkward way to Trip's room. Trip pulled at Jon's shirt, untucking it. Jon's shirt, a pullover, got tangled in Jon's belt, and Trip, desperate for the feel of warm flesh against his hands, ripped the fabric as he sought Jon's body. He ripped again to widen the hole, then began stroking.

"Don't stop," Jon said when Trip took his mouth off Jon's long enough to insert the door key. "Please. Don't ever stop."

Trip, kissing Jon, shredding Jon's shirt, pushed the door open and barely managed to get the key out of the lock before he and Jon were inside, trailing shoes and shirts. He dropped the room key, and Jon must have dropped the package with the pitcher, both his hands were on the front of Trip's trousers, undoing them.

"Now," Jon said definitely, stroking Trip's throbbing cock. "Inside me now."

Trip pushed Jon into the bathroom. The long mirror that ran the length of the bathroom reflected the light from the sitting room area. They were both frantic with need. His fingers were clumsy as he dug through the kit on the counter for lube. Then he had Jon's trousers down. He manhandled Jon, turning him so that his back was to Trip, and urged Jon to lean forward over the counter. Trip squirted a glob of lube into his hand and slid his hard cock right through the lube and directly into Jon.

Jon was hot and tight. Trip buried himself to the hilt and groaned. He was only going to last a second. His lubed hand stroked up and down Jon's shaft, and he began thrusting. He felt red heat boil up from his balls, and he didn't attempt to stretch out his pleasure. His eyes met Jon's in the mirror. Jon's eyes closed and his hips bucked as he came, his own hand tightly cupping Trip's as it worked Jon's cock. The erotic sight pushed Trip over the edge. Trip let his climax wash over him as he pushed hard into Jon, feeling his cock pulse deep inside Jon's heat. The two men groaned in pleasure as they abandoned themselves to orgasm. Jon's arm flung out to steady them, and he knocked the kit off the counter, sending paraphernalia everywhere. Trip barely noticed. The explosion of sound was hidden in his climax. He closed his eyes as his cock pulsed again and again, focusing on the exquisite sensation of coming inside Jon, and when he opened them, his eyes met the shocked eyes of Lieutenant Malcolm Reed in the mirror.

"Oh, shit," he gasped. He pulled out of Jon and leaned against the counter, then sat down heavily on the commode, a combination of his legs refusing to hold him and his tripping over the trousers around his ankles. Jon said, "Trip?" as his own eyes opened. He leaned both arms against the counter, his come-covered hand slipping slightly. When he saw Reed, he froze.

There was a shocked silence. Then Reed said, "Do you have any idea what a security risk this is? I cannot believe you left the door ajar." His voice was angry. "Anyone could have come in! Your safety is my priority, Captain, and here you are, doing everything in your power to jeopardize it." Trip opened his mouth, but Reed barreled on. Reed brandished the padd he was holding—Trip's padd, Trip now realized. "I came by to drop this off, the door was ajar, objects were strewn around the hallway, and I heard a crash in the lavatory. Of course I thought something was wrong. I was convinced something horrible was happening. Don't scare me like that!" Reed paused for breath, then let fly again. "And another thing. A relationship between two of the command staff is within my purview. The least you could have done is let me know what was going on. Captain, Commander, you should know better. When a captain is in a relationship, it has implications for the entire ship. God! This is a security nightmare."

Reed had wound down. While he had been ranting, Trip had reached up and grabbed some hand towels off a rack, and he had tossed one to Archer, who wiped off his hands as he turned around to face Reed. Now, Archer kicked off his trousers and underwear. He said conversationally, "Malcolm, get out."


"I said, get out." Archer's tone of voice didn't change.

Reed blinked, and he suddenly seemed to realize that there was more to this than security concerns. "Oh," he said weakly, and he took a step backward. His heel knocked against something, and he looked down. He turned red. "Oh," he said again. He had kicked against Trip's dildo, which had fallen out of the kit when Archer had knocked it off the countertop. Also on the floor were several interestingly shaped bottles of lube, a strip of condoms, and everyday items such as shaving cream, razors, and toothpaste. "I'm terribly sorry," he managed. "Do excuse me, Captain. Commander." Reed turned on his heel and strode out. They heard the door in the main room click shut behind him.

Jon sat down on the edge of the bathtub. He was silent for a moment. He finally said, "Oh, god. Oh, shit. Damn. Damn it." He put his head in his hands.

"Well, at least he didn't find out through the grapevine." Trip kicked off his trousers and briefs.

"Yes, that's a big comfort," Jon said. He turned on the bathtub's tap and wet the hand towel he was still holding. "I'm just so glad that he saw his captain with the chief engineer's dick up his ass, his captain coming all over his stomach and chest. So dignified." He began cleaning himself off.

In spite of himself, Trip began to laugh. After a moment, Jon grinned wryly, then joined in. "I better go check up on him," Jon said.

"Want me to come along?" Trip offered.

Jon shook his head. "No, it's all right."

Trip began cleaning up too. "Looks like you're timing it just right," he informed his lover. "You'll get up there at about five till. We can still meet Hoshi at ten."

"Oh, good," Jon said brightly. "I'd hate to miss the day trip."

"Ah. Sarcasm."

"Yes," Jon said, sounding very captainly.

Trip knelt at Jon's feet and spread Jon's legs. He scooted himself in and wrapped his arms around his lover, pressing his body against Jon's. "You know how I feel about you, right?" he said.

Jon dropped the sodden hand towel into the tub. "Yes, I do," he responded. They clung to each other for a moment.

"Okay, then, tell me how I feel about you."

Jon stroked the side of Trip's face. "You love me," he said. "How do I feel about you?"

"You love me too." Trip touched the middle of Jon's chest gently with his index finger. "You feel it here."

"I do. You're absolutely right. How do you know that?"

"Easy. I feel it too." He kissed Jon and rose. "You'd better not keep Malcolm waiting. He's probably freaking out about now. Only his pissiness kept that rant going." Now Reed would be full of embarrassment and remorse. He did not envy his captain the task.

Trip met Hoshi in the lobby at ten. She was sitting on a large brown leather couch that made her seem very small indeed. Her feet didn't touch the ground. Next to her were two backpacks—probably lunch. Trip set his backpack next to Sato's and sat next to her. His feet didn't touch the ground either.

"You look nice," Sato observed. Trip was wearing hiking gear. Sato was wearing hiking gear too, but Trip's appeared high-tech and performance-based. It implied that Trip was an expert hiker—and in fact, he was. "Isn't it kind of…tight?"

"Yes," Trip answered absently. "So it doesn't get caught on stuff as you hike."

"What's wrong, Trip?"

Travis fidgeted. "Malcolm just found out about me and Jon."

"I thought you were going to tell him."

"We were."

"Well how did he find out?"

Trip turned and faced her. He tried not to blush as he said, "We were kind of in the middle of something when Malcolm just walked in."

"Ohhh," Sato said. "Ouch."

"Jon is talking to him right now."

"What, you didn't lock the door?"

"I guess we were busy. It was probably propped open accidentally."

"Damn, why do I miss all the good stuff?" Hoshi teased.

Trip cleared his throat, embarrassed. "Anyway. Tell me about lunch."

"That was a terrible transition."

Trip started laughing. "I know."

"Well, let me see. We have the strangely colored cheese course, followed by the inexplicable meat course and the fun blue vegetable course. All accompanied, by the way, by the fizzy green wine course."

"Yum," Trip said. "Is there a zany dessert course?"

"'Zany' is the right word." Sato's eyes shifted. "Oh, here they are." She struggled out of the sofa, turned, and gave Trip a hand up as Malcolm and Jon approached. Both of them were wearing hiking gear too, although it wasn't as form-fitting as Trip's.

Jon's eyebrows rose slightly as he took in Trip. He cleared his throat. "I have an announcement to make," he said without preamble as he and Reed came to rest beside the sofa. "As captain, I have a right to live my private life as I see fit. However, Enterprise is a small ship, and there is more gossip on that ship than there are dilithium crystals in Engineering, so I have decided to inform you, as a courtesy to the bridge crew, that Commander Tucker and I are dating. Tell whoever you want. It's no secret."

"I can't believe it," Trip said, voice unbelieving. "Are you positive? You and me?"

"I'm positive," Jon responded.

"If you say so," Trip said doubtfully. "Well, I always did think you were kind of hot, Cap'n."

"Well, it's not news to me," Sato said. "But I'm very happy for you two nonetheless. Come on, Captain, help me with this." Jon and Hoshi began arranging backpacks and bickering as Malcolm and Trip eyed each other.

Trip said "Malcolm" just as Reed said "Trip." They both paused, and Reed held up a hand to indicate he would go first.

"I'm embarrassed, and I'm truly sorry," Reed said. He met Trip's eyes directly. Trip had a feeling that this speech had been mentally rehearsed. "I just thought I'd run the guidebook by, but the door was open, the hallway was a mess, and I heard, um, noises in the bathroom. I thought there were intruders or something. So naturally I just walked in. I got mad because I was ready to do battle, but there was nobody to battle, and you didn't seem…aware of the security risk. I'm sorry. I just—that is—oh, hell." Malcolm took a deep breath. He had gotten to the end of his rehearsed speech. He crossed his arms, then uncrossed them, then shifted his weight. His eyes focused down on a shoe, then back up on Trip, who was waiting patiently. "I was shocked. I had no idea," Reed went on. "I saw something very personal that I had no right to see. I'm so sorry."

Reed was turning red again. Apparently they really had shocked him. Trip had never seen Malcolm lose his composure like this. He watched, fascinated.

"The Captain had a little talk with me just now," Reed continued. "I appreciate your telling me about—about your relationship before it's common knowledge on the ship. But I apologize. I shouldn't have come in uninvited, even if I thought something was wrong." There was a brief pause while Reed fiddled with his earlobe. He was acutely embarrassed. "I'm finished," Reed said at last.

"Okay," Trip said. "We were going to tell you today anyway. I'm sure Jon told you that. For security reasons."

"He mentioned that," Reed said. "Well, I for one never even suspected." He moved closer to Trip, patting him awkwardly on the shoulder. "I'm really happy for you, Trip. For both of you."

"Thanks, Malcolm, and apology accepted." Trip caught him up in a one-armed hug.

"Good." Reed heaved a sigh. "Let's go view those falls and find Travis and his redheaded pilot exotic dancer girlfriend."

The trip to Wollis Falls was a lot of fun. They had their picnic lunch—the dessert was indeed zany—and then went for hikes. Trip wanted to hike the most difficult trail, but Hoshi didn't have the hiking expertise. Jon decided to accompany Hoshi, so Reed and Trip set off, leaving Jon and Hoshi to take an easier trail around the other side. They spent about an hour at the top, taking pictures. The view was spectacular. The hike initially started out with strained silence, but by the time they had reached the top, Malcolm and Trip were making normal exchanges. It was good that they had this time alone—although Trip would have preferred to have Jon with him to enjoy the wild, romantic view.

They met for dinner in the restaurant, which was a casual place that catered to hikers and tourists; their garb wasn't at all out of place, and neither was their sweatiness. Trip was just beginning to think that they'd go the whole day without seeing Travis when, during dessert, Sato perked up and waved wildly.

"They're here," she whispered, and a moment later, Travis and a striking woman with red-gold hair came up to the table.

"Hello, everybody," Travis said. "I didn't know you were coming up to the falls today." He smiled, but it looked forced.

Archer just said, "Yes," and waited expectantly.

Mayweather didn't leap right in, so Sato pushed it along.

"I'm Hoshi Sato," she said, leaning back in her chair and extending her hand to the redhead. "Travis and I work together."

The redhead took Sato's hand gratefully. "I'm Lauren Stone," she said.

She shook hands all around as they introduced themselves, and she took a chair when offered one, so Mayweather had to sit down too. He looked grumpy.

"What do you do?" Trip asked her. "Are you a pilot, like Travis?"

"Yes, I am, in fact," Lauren said. "I'm lead pilot at Deep Space Four. But I just do it to fund my hobby. I'm into drag racing."

"She feels the need for speed," Travis put in. "She's a moon bunny."

"Moon bunny?" Trip asked.

"She uses moons to get that little extra push, then slingshots around. It's a whole genre of drag racing. And Lauren's one of the best."

Trip blinked. Lauren smiled.

"I was thinking maybe you were a dancer," Sato confided. "You have the body type, and you walk like a dancer."

"That's funny, I was going to say the same about you," Stone said. "I used to dance. And you look really familiar to me. Have we met?"

"I don't think so," Sato said. "Just at the club a few nights ago."

"No, I'm sure of it," Stone insisted. She snapped her fingers. "Six years ago, the zumbai competition in Sao Paulo?"

"Yes," Sato said, voice incredulous. "I placed sixth."

"I knew it." Stone looked delighted. "I placed fourth."

"Zumbai?" Trip put in, before the girlish gushing could get too extreme.

"It's a dance form," Sato said. "It's highly stylized. I used to dance zumbai competitively when I was at school, and a partner and I used to do the ballroom dance circuit."

"I did not know this about you," Jon said.

"I'm full of surprises," Sato said. "Well, would you all like to see? I have a player and some disks with me." She turned to Lauren , apparently her new best friend. "Shall we show them how it's done?" "Oh, I'd love to," Lauren said.

"Come on."

They paid the bill and left, heading for the area where they had picnicked earlier. Trip put his arm around Jon as they all walked, talking and laughing. Mayweather fell in beside them.

"Lauren is really nice," Trip offered. "Smart and pretty."

"I know," Travis said gloomily. "Trust me to find someone great on shore leave, when nothing can come of it. Captain, I thought your relationship was a secret."

"Not any more," Jon said. "Tell anyone you want. Trip and I are dating. In fact, we're quite serious."

"You make a cute couple."

Jon smiled. "Thanks. 'Cute' is just what we're going for."

"Excuse me." Stone had called to Travis, and he hurried to catch up.

Jon and Trip trailed behind the other members of the crew as they entered the picnic area, which was mostly deserted. They caught up just as Sato turned on the music, and as the men made themselves comfortable on one of the picnic tables, she and Stone danced zumbai. It looked to Trip like a combination between tai chi and hula dancing, with slow undulations of the hips and stylized arm movements. Although they had just met, the two of them danced an identical dance, perfectly in time with each other. The movements and the music were sultry and implied tropical heat and sex. Stone spoke quietly every now and then, and Trip realized she was cueing their movements. They took a bow when the song ended. When the next song on the disk began, Trip called out, "Do men dance zumbai? Can I learn?"

"Oh, yes, they do indeed," Stone said. "In fact, you'd be quite a hot commodity on the zumbai circuit. Don't you agree, Hoshi?"

"On appearance and sex appeal alone? Definitely," Sato said. "Tall and handsome, and just look at that body." Stone made a noise of agreement. Mayweather yelled out, "None of that, now, Lauren. You're supposed to pretend to like me best. And Hoshi, I'm pretty sure Trip is off-limits."

"Damn straight," Jon growled. "Mine. All mine."

"Tell him to wear less revealing clothing, then," Sato demanded.

"I can't tell him anything," Jon said in mock despair, to general amusement.

"Let's see if he can put his money where his mouth is." Sato pointed to a spot beside her. "Come on, Trip. Let's see if you can keep up." Trip joined the women, and Sato took a step forward so he could see her and struck a pose. Stone and Trip copied it. Sato's fingers snapped quietly. "Feel the beat?"

Trip nodded. "Got it."

"Let's go. Left arm slow around, then swipe fingers around like so. Good. Right foot back, switch weight and hold as right arm comes up overhead."

Trip listened to her soft cues. Stone had been using some kind of cueing shortcut with Sato, but Sato was spelling it out for him. His body found the beat, and he let it control his movements. He wasn't the world's best dancer—he had more enthusiasm than skill—and he wasn't as smooth as Sato and Stone, but judging by the way Jon was looking at him, he wasn't doing too badly. He concentrated hard, trying to match his movements exactly to Sato's. The steps began repeating, and his movements smoothed as he became more comfortable. By the fourth repetition, he began smiling and getting into it. When the song ended, they took a bow, and the three members of the audience clapped and hooted.

"You're a quick study," Stone told him. "Does anyone else want to learn?"

Reed, Mayweather, and Archer declined, and the trio danced zumbai to one more song before Sato swapped disks. "How about some regular dancing?" she asked. A slow waltz began playing. "Malcolm, will you dance with me?"

Malcolm took her extended hand. "I'm not much of a dancer, but the company is good. Thanks, I'd love to." He put his arm around her and they began moving, Sato expertly guiding Malcolm's steps. Travis and Stone were next, Stone smiling up at the tall man.

"That leaves us, Jon." Trip tugged Jon off the picnic table and kissed him. He could get used to this: kissing Jon in public, slow dancing with Jon in public. He found the beat of the music and they began moving, Trip easily following Jon's lead, Jon's warm body leaning intimately into Trip's. They danced together until the sun set and the stars came out.

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