Title: Security

Author: Weebob

E-mail: weebob@fsmail.net

Date: 07/30/03

Fandom: Enterprise

Pairing: Archer/Reed

Rating: PG13

Category: Slash

Feedback: Aids the learning process!

Archive: EntSTCommunity, Reed's Armoury, BLTS, MEGA. Others, please ask first

SPOILERS: Terra Nova

Summary: A crisis brings an awakening.

DISCLAIMER: I don't own or have any rights to the Star Trek universe, "Enterprise", or any of its characters—they belong to UPN/Paramount. I am making no money from this story.

Author's Note: Archer's POV. Harmless fluff. This was a spur of the moment fic, thrown together from memory in a dull moment at work. Therefore, it is, quite possibly, totally inaccurate in terms of the sequence of events in the episode "Terra Nova"!

If anyone asked me to describe Malcolm Reed in three words, they'd be: "He's so fucking tenacious!"

We have an argument every time I'm about to set foot off the ship and I can sense him working himself up for another round right now. What'll it be this time?

"I recommend a security detail, sir." Or "It would be inappropriate for the captain of Enterprise to put himself at risk on an away mission." Or "Sir! I would be negligent in my duty if I did not point out to you the need for security in this endeavour."

If he's not lecturing me about off-ship security, he's berating me for my lack of caution ON the ship:

"We need to be more aware of possible threats, sir"; "We need to react faster, sir"; "We need to screen visitors more carefully, sir."

My God! He's pedantic! I feel like a school kid being told off all the time!

Never mind. Today, I'll pre-empt his objections: "Lieutenant Reed, how do you fancy a little excursion to the Terra Nova colony? I'm taking a team down and I'm sure security will be vital in this situation, since we're likely to be wading through the personal effects of a lot of dead people."

Heh! Sarcasm may be unbecoming but I enjoyed that. He knows as well as I do that the colony's been silent for years. If there's anything more threatening than a few dry bones down there, I'll eat my rank pips. I'd been hoping for more of a reaction from him though—he's kinda funny when he gets all wound up and protective.

I'm not so keen on that "big, hurt eyes" thing he just did. Actually, I don't think he realises he's doing it, but I've seen it quite a lot lately…


Now THIS is more like it! I feel like I'm getting a chance to do some real exploring. The colony looked pretty desolate, but we came across a humanoid life form which has gone to ground in some caves.

I'm going after it!

Lieutenant Reed's in full-blown nanny mode, practically joined to me at the hip! Oh. Oh, of course—I'm supposed to let HIM go first. Okay Malcolm, I'll bite. Even though we're chasing after some half- naked primitive, he's sneaking along with a phase pistol at the ready, paranoia run rampant.


Okay! Okay! I was wrong! The mud men are firing on us with pretty lethal looking projectile weapons. T'Pol's on the com, guiding us back to the surface, and Malcolm's covering my back while I get out. He'll never let me live this down, in fact…What was that? Did he just call out? Damn! He's been hit, hasn't he? I have to get back to him…no, no he says he's OK. He's getting up: I can go.

Why isn't he following? I'll go take a look. God, no! There's nothing there but his flashlight.

Oh, Jesus, they've got him.


You know, I'm not normally a religious man but I've been doing a lot of praying lately. I can't just write him off—I don't leave my people behind, alive or dead.

Dead…No! Please, God, don't let him be dead. I can't…


Alive! We've located his biosign but they've got him well-guarded and too deep underground for the transporter to be effective. I'm taking Phlox and going back down there. Its risky, but that's just me. I'm willing to take risks.

Especially for Malcolm.


Here we go again, back down to the bowels of the planet. Its dusty and feels cold and damp. I think they're burning some kind of animal fat for light and it really smells bad. The whole place is dingy and claustrophobic: I'm glad Hoshi's not here.

Phlox is quite taken by it all—more aspects of human nature to study. And, despite appearance, these mud people ARE human.

Me, though, the great explorer? I just want Malcolm to be alright.


I can see him! He's lying back against a rock shelf and…hmm, he doesn't look too good. Can't quite tell if that's bruising on his face or just dirt. This place is filthy and the dust must be playing hell with his allergies.

Ah, he's seen us. Bet he's real pissed off that I'm here without a dozen security officers, although he does look kinda pleased to see me.

Yeah, fancy meeting me here indeed. Did you think I'd just warp off and leave you? Okay, let's see what Phlox has to say about that leg.


What the fuck is it with these people? Do they have to be so obstructive? I really don't want to be having this discussion—just let me take Malcolm and go. Good, they're finally letting Phlox examine him. Maybe I can concentrate on talking to them now.

Or maybe not: he's so pale and his teeth are chattering with the cold in here. We need to get him back to sickbay and get that projectile out of his leg.

Now what? Isn't it bad enough that I'm having to practically whip these people into letting us help them without the doc coming up with another problem? Okay, the old lady needs medical attention—but so does Malcolm.

Can't we come back later and talk about it—like after he's well again?


I can't believe it! Why the hell did I pick this guy as my ship's surgeon? The mud men want us to leave Malcolm as a hostage, while Momma gets treatment, and Phlox says its OK! How can it be OK? He's been bleeding for ages and he's freezing to death!

Shit! I have to calm down: I'm taking this too personally. Breathe, Jon…


Sorry Malcolm, I have to go. You're being so brave about this—in that stoic sort of way you have—but I can see those big, hurt eyes again and they're tearing me apart.

I'll be back for you: count on it.


Enough! That's IT! I want them off my ship!

This is all taking much too long. I want to help these people, and I'm doing everything I can, but things get more and more complicated. I thought we'd make headway when Phlox cured Nadet, but I think they're more entrenched than ever.

It doesn't help that I can't stop worrying about Malcolm. I'm responsible for all my officers, so why the hell am I so bothered about the one who irritates me the most? Usually I'm cursing him and wishing he was somebody else's Armoury Officer…ANYBODY else's!

Only a few hours ago, I was sniping at him. Now, I can't bear to look at the tactical station because he's not there. What is WRONG with me?

Focus, Jon, focus.


Well, that was fun! First the shuttle pod landing causes a cave-in then we have to save yet ANOTHER Novan life when one of them gets trapped under a fallen tree. I think I used up about nine lives of my own, creeping round that narrow rock ledge to get to him. His leg's broken and we'll have to carry him back to the main cave then try to persuade him to see Phlox

…AFTER the doc's finished with Malcolm.


Thank God, he's still alive! Pale as death and all smudged, ruffled and shivering, but he's alive and he's trying to get up to meet us. We're passing pleasantries as if we've bumped into one another, strolling in the park, but I can't help touching him.

Nadet's arguing with her son now. I think she's seen we're telling the truth about the need for them to move to the other side of the planet. Please let him listen: let's get this wrapped up now.

Just a little longer, Malcolm.


At last! Trip's come down in the other shuttle, with a team of engineers, to rescue the first one and let us get back to the ship. Malcolm insists he's fine and will walk out of the tunnels but he's not gonna make it. As it is, I'm practically holding him up, and the shivering's getting worse. He's sweating and I think he has a fever.

Almost back at Enterprise—and not before time. He's thrown up twice: once on the deck and once over me. (God, he's cute when he's embarrassed!). Funnily enough, I don't mind a bit, although I hate to think what he's been eating.

I've got him wrapped up in a blanket now, lying on one of the benches, and I'm putting cold compresses on his forehead while Travis flies us home. Phlox told me to give him some more painkiller and I think that's made him feel a lot better—although he's kinda out of it now.

Those big grey eyes are struggling to stay open but, when they succeed, they're watching me. I never noticed before how pretty they are and how handsome he is: those cheekbones are remarkable.

He's trying to say something now, but its not coming out right and he's giggling! Take your time, Malcolm. Nope, he still can't get his tongue round it, but he's stopped laughing. What's he doing? He's pulling me down closer—does he think it'll be easier if he whispers?

Oh. Oh, wow! Oh Malcolm! I can't believe he kissed me. I don't think he can either—he's looking a little bit scared. Can't have that.

I slip my arms under his shoulders and pull him up towards me. He's kinda floppy right now, like a big ragdoll, but he still manages to put his arms round me when I kiss him back. He tastes of the peppermint anti-nausea medicine I gave him right after he threw up—which is a blessing, I suppose—and his tongue is very, VERY insistent! Travis is in the middle of one of his "Back when I was a boomer" monologues but, right now, I don't give a damn!


Malcolm's asleep and I'm carrying him to sickbay. There isn't much of him, so I don't think I'll throw my back out—which is fortunate, because I hope I'm going to need it in good shape. Some of the things Malcolm just told me he wants to do to me will certainly require good degree of suppleness on my part and, come to think of it, a hell of a lot of stamina.


Well, its 24 hours since I discovered that Malcolm and I DO have something in common after all. Phlox has released him into my custody—his words, not mine—and he's reluctantly allowing me to carry him back to his quarters. He's pumped full of antibiotics and pain relief but he's perfectly lucid and remembers what happened in the shuttle.

The best bit is he has no regrets.


Well, we've made it to his cabin. He's still rather delicate and, much as I'd like to, I'm not going to crawl into his tiny bunk with him and hold him to some of those sexually explicit promises he made to me when he was doped up to the eyeballs on the shuttle.

Not yet.

We're both a little shocked, but pleased, by the turn of events. We've agreed that we've been dancing around our mutual attraction for quite a while—and it was way past time to do something about it. All these months of fighting about security, when the real problem was sexual tension!

So…here we are, snuggled up together on his bunk—Malcolm beneath the covers, me on top, both of us fully clothed! We're safely entwined in each other's arms and it feels wonderful.

Security? Oh, I think we've found ours!

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