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"E2" - Scene Addition
Author - T2Fan | E | Genre - Episode Addition | Genre - Friendship | Main Story | Rating - PG
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“E2”- Scene Addition
He’d begun to see the change in his two senior officers some time ago. When was it that the bickering had turned into bantering, and then into a kind of affectionate teasing? Over the past year, when he’d seen them in the mess hall, they were usually sitting together. Once he’d been shocked and somewhat envious to see the expression on T’Pol’s face as she’d watched Trip’s eyes crinkle with humor at some joke. She’d looked amused, and something more. Captivated, he thought. Her eyes were on Trip’s mouth, and then swept up to his eyes, as if committing Trip’s features to memory at just that moment. Her mouth had curved slightly at the corners, in an almost smile. She’d looked like a different person. Archer had never been able to elicit such a response from his First Officer.
Jonathan recalled how resentful he’d been when the Vulcans had twisted Star Fleet’s arm to include T’Pol on Enterprise. If Archer was distrustful, Trip had been downright outraged. His hostility towards T’Pol had been palpable. But Archer had seen the change come. Or had it, really? Was the intense feeling Trip had from the beginning only a kind of precursor to his current feelings? What were Trip’s current feelings? Jonathan saw it now, with a clarity he hadn’t had the time or desire to acknowledge before. Trip was in deep - hook, line and sinker. It was apparent in the way he looked at her, in the tone of his voice when he spoke to her, or about her.
Archer had known about the neuropressure sessions, but Trip had never really said much to him about them. When he had asked if the sessions were helping him sleep, Trip had answered affirmatively, and then he had moved onto another subject almost immediately. Then something had happened, a few weeks ago. As pre-occupied as he was with the mission, Archer had sensed it, in both of them; a kind of softening; an awareness of each other that could only mean one thing. He’d dismissed it from his mind at the time. It couldn’t be, he’d thought. Trip would have told me, wouldn’t he? Maybe not, Jonathan thought wearily. When was the last time the two of us just spent some time together as friends – buddies? It felt like eons. The weight of the world, literally, was on his shoulders, and he’d been able to think of little else.
And what of T’Pol? He’d come to trust her, to care about her. He regarded her as a fine officer and a friend. There had been a time when she stirred feelings in him that he had immediately and ruthlessly banked down. She was a lovely, desirable woman. But the complications that could result from a relationship with his First Officer made it impossible – especially if his feelings were not fully reciprocated. He thought he was completely past that until they’d encountered the future Enterprise. Until he realized that his First Officer and Chief Engineer had the possibility of a real future together.
He sighed. It wasn’t really that he wanted a romantic relationship with T’Pol himself. It had more to do with his envy of the fact that Trip and T’Pol had each other, and that there was no one for him, and maybe never would be. Sure, on the other Enterprise his counterpart had found someone, but the odds of that happening to this lonely captain were next to nothing.
The chime at his door trilled. “Come”, he said. Trip strode through the door. “I just wanted to let you know, Cap’n, the injectors that Lorian took have been re-installed. They’re fully functional again.”
“Good work, Trip. When can we get underway?”
“Rostov’s workin’ on some final recalibrations – I’d say in another hour, at the most.”
“Good, that’s good”.
Trip turned to take his leave. Archer cleared his throat awkwardly. “So, Trip…”
Trip’s face flushed slightly. “Well Cap’n, to be completely honest, I don’t know what the hell to tell you about me an’ T’Pol.” His face darkened as he thought about their recent conversation regarding their possible future together. He swore softly under his breath. “She is, without a doubt, the most mule-headed woman I have ever known. She can’t see what’s as plain as the nose on her face – or, she does see it, but she won’t admit it! Sometimes, she acts so damn arrogant, so cold.” His voice softened. “But there’s no one who cares more – no-one I trust more.” Tripp’s voice took on a reverent, dreamlike quality, as if he were remembering something wonderful. “And whoever said Vulcans have no passion…. Well, they have no idea; you just can’t imagine…” Trip suddenly realized to whom he was speaking and what he was saying. He stopped abruptly and reddened.
Well, Archer thought. That answers one question.
“Cap’n - I assume what I’ve said won’t go any further?”.
“Of course not, Trip”. The captain regarded his friend sympathetically. “You’ve got it pretty bad, don’t you?”
Trip smiled ruefully. “I guess I do”.
“I know she does – in my heart I know it – but she doesn’t, yet”. Trip sighed.
“Things’ll work out Trip. As I recall, you’re one stubborn son-of-a-bitch yourself”.
Trip grinned. “That’s what keeps me goin’”.
For a moment, they smiled together in silent appreciation of masculine persistence.
Trip said hesitantly, “So, I heard about your future bride…”
Archer gave a short, bitter laugh. “That one’s truly another reality. Pretty damn unlikely, don’t you think?” Archer paced over to a porthole, placed a hand on either side, and gazed upon the field of stars stretched out before him. “No - captains are married to their ships, Trip, you know that.”
Abruptly he turned around to face Trip, and changed the subject. “I’ve noticed that T’Pol hasn’t been herself lately. She’s been acting a little, well, emotional for a Vulcan. Do you have any idea what’s going on?”
“Not yet”, said Trip. “But I’ll keep at her until I get to the bottom of it – I can promise you that!”
Archer smiled. “I believe you will. If there’s anything I can do to help-“
“Of course, Cap’n, I’ll let you know.” Trip glanced at his chronometer. “I’d better get back to Engineering.”
Archer tried to go through the PADD that Trip had left him, but his vision blurred with exhaustion. He rested his head on the desk, only for a moment. Twenty minutes later, Hoshi’s voice woke him from a sound sleep. “Captain to the bridge!”
The ready room doors hissed shut behind him. “What is it, Hoshi?” said Archer, as he stepped onto the bridge, rubbing the sleep from his eyes.
“It’s a ship, sir – they’re hailing us”.
Archer’s face immediately assumed the mask of wariness that now came to him naturally.
A face appeared on screen. It was an alien woman. Her face was warm, and open. Auburn ringlets cascaded across her shoulders, and her eyes were a shade of deep green he’d never seen before in either alien or human. Her mouth – his head tilted slightly to one side as if to study it better – full-lipped, quirked in humor - you could see the laugh lines. Made for kissing. Now where the hell had that thought come from? He pulled himself together as he noticed his Communications Officer gazing at him quizzically.
The alien woman’s voice was low, and musical, and currently, puzzled. “Captain? Did you hear me? We need assistance – can you - will you - help us?”
“Of course”, Archer heard himself say. “Why don’t you come aboard, and we’ll discuss it?”
Minutes later, Archer stood by the docking bay doors as they slid open. Gracefully, the alien woman stepped forward. She looked up brightly into his face. “I don’t know how to thank you for this – when we were hit by that anomaly field, the damage was more extensive than we could handle.” It was then that Archer noticed the soft ridge running down the middle of her brow. He swallowed, hard. “I apologize,” he said, “but I missed your name.” She flashed a brilliant smile. “I am an Icarin,” she said, “and my name is Aceilia. It is a pleasure to meet you.”
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A whole mess of folks have made comments
I think I just broke one of my own rules...
I liked a fic that was nice, really nice, to Archer!
Yes, Trip, you will get her to realise how she feels about you!
great add-on T2Fan! Thank you
That was a great story. I still sort of like Archer and I'd like to think he found happiness too, even if it wasn't like he expected!
oh very very good. not sure if trip would have blurted out all he did in your story but it worked and well the ending... i've always love Scott Bakula and while Archer has not been the captain i hoped he is i believe the captain we get for what has happened...
oh very good.
The impossible has occurred.
I liked your Archer. He was an adult, warm, compassionate, dedicated, and not-self absorbed.
I will look out for the locusts.
Truly Excellent Fic.
An understanding Archer? Sam and Clicks liking him? Hell just froze over t2fan! I can't believe my eyes! Now if stubs says she likes this Archer then I'm floored! :D
Very good one, and like everyone else, practically, Archer's found some understanding in my heart too.
"Triplover said: Now if stubs says she likes this Archer then I'm floored! :D"
And Myst! If Myst likes this Archer, we know the universe is about to freeze over. Afterall, Archer is "The Man Whose Name Will Never Again Be Mentioned Because He Is A Complete Asshole (TMWNWNABMBHIACA)" in her book. Mine too, most of the time.
However, I have to agree, I rather liked the Archer portrayed in this story!
I really liked this story! And the Captain too! (And that's definetly saying something!)
Good grief, Archer really is human! Only joking, I did enjoy this fic and was pleasantly surprised that the Captain had a bit of light at the end of his tunnel too. For the first time in ages I haven't wanted to hit him over the head with something very VERY heavy. I also really liked the fact that in this fic his jealousy was not because he wanted T'Pol but because Trip and T'Pol had each other and he had no one. That nails it for me. Very astute. Thanks, Ali D :~)
Wow, I didn't know Archer could act like an adult. Mature, considerate, hell, he even came close to teasing Trip. Nice portrayal of him.
Very nice story! I don't have anything against Archer, so I quite enjoyed the way you've portrayed him. It's good to see that he and Trip do not necessarily have lost their friendship. Really, great story. Thanks for writing it!
Lovely story, particularly the way you've handled Archer. Your interpretation -- a kinder, gentler Archer -- works well with the Archer portrayed in that last episode. I hope you have another story in mind featuring Aceilia -- I don't think we'll meet her again on the show since she supposedly lived in the past, but I would love to see her again in fiction and this is a lovely introduction. Thanks!
Loved it, I have always liked Archer, especially this season....he's alot more interesting in S3 than in S1 and S2! I like how you wrote him here, I imagine him to be mentally and physically tired but still be somewhat aware of what's going on around the ship...wouldn't be much of a Captain if he wasn't! I don't see Archer as a jealous type and like in your story I imagine him to be supportive to Trip. I agree that he has feelings for T'Pol but like all Trek Captains, the ship comes first!
Great story! It tied in wonderfully with the episode.
You get the overall vote for making the most likely Archer there is....You should be an award on a plaque.
Hey! This is so cute! I was wondering if I could post it on my site. Email me at email@example.com to let me know.
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