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Sloth

by nostalgia

     From: "nostalgia" <lmc9@st-and.ac.uk>
     Subject: 'Sloth' (Enterprise, PG-13)
     Date: Saturday, November 30, 2002 10:07 PM

     Title: Sloth 
     Author: nostalgia 
     Rated: PG-13
     Summary: "It's not instinctive...": T'Pol represses. 
     Disclaimathon: Berman and Braga own the inhabitants of the
     NX-01. They wouldn't do this with them though. Spoilers:
     'Aquistision', 'A Night In Sickbay'. 
     Author's Random Shit: Beta'd by kbk. Can't remember if
     Vulcan "touch-telepathy" is canon or fanon. It's in here
     anyway. 
     Author's Further Random Shit: 456 words. Inspired by, of all
     things, a Kenickie song. Blatant theft of a single line from
     the epic Dr Who fic 'Velvet, Silk, Linen, Skin.' (Sincerest
     form of flattery? Umm...) 
     The other six sins can be found at
     http://bitextual.gatefiction.com/nostalgia

Awake, it's not a problem. Awake she can control and suppress and analyse and nothing can perturb her. Given the choice, she would spend her life in a state of continual consciousness.

But sometimes, like all imperfect creatures, she needs to sleep.

And when she sleeps the training slips away and all the gains are lost. For hours - hours - she is at the mercy of her own emotions. They nag, cajole, harass, disturb.

And she remembers defending his ship for him (*their ship/their child*). She remembers releasing him from bonds. She remembers his emotions - irritation, impatience, relief...

Arousal. The definite, unique, human scent of testosterone. She remembers shock, a wave of disgust, quickly repressed. And...something else. A reaction of her own to complement his. Something that she analysed away as a stress reaction.

She remembers touching his skin as the key found the lock.

Touch-telepathy can be a curse.

Awake, she avoids the memory. Asleep, her minds drift back to the image in his mind.

[Her Captain, submissive and penitent. Kneeling. Needing.]

She doesn't love him.

[Her Captain. Hers.]

Awake, she sees his arrogance and his petulance. She fights irritation and suppresses anger. She lists flaws and works around them.

[Polymer, cotton, cotton, skin]

She spends her days negotiating with his ego, correcting his mistakes, lamenting the species gap. Her emotions are entirely under her own control.

[Her Captain. Hers.]

She chooses not to find him attractive.

She has to sleep eventually. She can feel her control start to slip as her heartrate slows.

[Images and sounds and memories and feelings.]

She feels herself drifting away from discipline and focus.

She is falling asleep. She is falling from grace.

There is nothing she can do to stop herself falling.

[In some other place, not the real world, she lies bare between his sheets, stealing body-heat.]

Humans think of sleep as peaceful. They see it as an escape. When they are depressed, they sleep more often. They advise each other to solve a problem by "sleeping on it."

[In the dream world she sleeps beside him, his arm resting on her stomach. In the dream world she is possessive.]

Her feelings are irrelevant. They are a distraction and a failure. They are inappropriate.

[He runs his fingers across her skin. She shivers, sighs.]

All it takes is concentration.

[A kiss, a caress.]

The price of peace is eternal vigilance. (A human phrase, though they miss its meaning.)

[In the dream world her eyes are open, and her heart is racing.]

She walks away from another argument. He will apologise, as always, in the morning. She wonders what humans dream of.

"Goodnight, Sub-commander," he says as the door slides closed.

He hasn't the slightest idea.


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