Disclaimer - Paramount own them.
I make no excuses for the sappiness of this. Set anytime you want to pick after 'Someone To Watch Over Me'.
He was going over a few details on the PADD he was about to hand over when he noticed the noise. Glancing up, he frowned as he studied her.
Kathryn had her chair pushed far away from the table, so was resting her rear just on the edge of the seat and was leaning forward to rest her elbows on the desk. In her right hand she was absently reading through the information contained on the PADD she currently held, and the left hand was tapping against her face.
She was humming.
Recognising the tune immediately, he grinned.
Puffing her cheeks out, she allowed a large amount of air to escape through her lips before she returned to the humming.
He smiled even more. "Kathryn?"
The humming faded away but still she kept her gaze on the PADD and responded with an absent "Hmm?" as her left hand moved to scratch the side of her nose.
"Do you realise what you were doing?"
"I don't know, what was I doing?" She queried, moving the hand away and still not paying attention.
After a few seconds she frowned softly, as if there were something on the PADD she was supposed to be reading that she found perplexing, when she finally deigned to give him her full attention and lifted her head to look at him. "Don't be silly."
"I'm being perfectly serious, Kathryn," He smiled. "I hadn't noticed it as a habit of yours before."
Studying him closely, then perhaps deciding that he might be telling the truth, she looked vaguely embarrassed and lowered the PADD she held. Chuckling, she sighed. "It's hardly my own fault," She informed him. "Ever since the Doctor and Seven gave their little performance last week I've had that damn song stuck in my head. It's driving me mad!"
"It's a lovely song," He contradicted kindly and ignored the rolled-eyes she sent in his direction. "Although I have to admit I didn't think it was Seven's style."
"Nor the Doctor's, given his predilection for opera," She agreed.
Chakotay shrugged. "I guess we shouldn't expect anything normal from a holographic physician and an ex-Borg."
Swivelling on the seat of her chair a little, she mock-glared at him. "I'll have you know that I have a perfectly normal crew."
She almost convinced him of her sincerity.
But ruined it by smiling.
"Okay," Kathryn admitted, "They're a little weird. But weird is-"
"Please Kathryn, not that *again*. Can't you come up with something original?" It was all he could do to keep the smile off his face, and even he knew he was failing miserably.
"If you hadn't interrupted me Chakotay, you would have discovered that I was about to say that weird is something I've learned to live with."
Taking in his expression, she smiled. "Okay, weird is something I've learned to put up with. And I do even...like it in some cases."
Curious, he frowned. "What cases?"
She snorted. "Come on, Chakotay. If you want to give a gift to someone you give them flowers or...something gift-wrapped or...coffee," She added with an overtly obvious nod in his direction. "You do not cut down a big tree, hollow it out, fill it with water and then hand it over as a bathtub."
"I thought you liked the bathtub," He mumbled, feeling a little deflated.
"I *loved* the bathtub," She emphasised seriously, softly. "It was just a little weird. I mean...bathtubs. Head boards. Don't misunderstand me; I adored the sentiment, still do. It was very thoughtful. It was just...a little weird. You're a little weird."
Chakotay honestly didn't know if he should take that as a compliment or not. "In my family, my people...the most sacred and treasured gifts were always the ones made with your own hands."
"I understand that," Kathryn replied, leaning further forward to cover one of his hands with hers. "I wish I had understood it better at the time, but I do understand how much they meant to you. You have no idea how many times I've wished I could give you something so wonderfully...weird...in return."
Reassured, he smiled. "There's no need-"
"Not to you, perhaps," She chided gently. "But I'd like to."
"Alright," Chakotay declared, an idea coming immediately to mind. "If you want to do that, you can."
Surprised at the suddenness of his response and equally a little worried at what he had in mind, she removed her hand. "You have an idea?"
"I'd like you to keep humming," He loved the sound of her doing that. "It's very soothing."
Even more surprised, she cautiously agreed. "O-kay..." Clearing her throat, she tried to begin humming the song she had been earlier but now she was feeling ridiculously self-conscious. Come on, come on. He'd already heard her do this before. This was nothing. This was...
He was humming as well.
Blinking, she looked at him.
He must have noticed her self-consciousness and was humming along with her so she wouldn't feel so ridiculous. Shaking her head, she nonetheless continued and they both returned to looking at their respective PADDs as the humming went on.
After a few verses, she stopped.
Surprised, Chakotay paused and looked up at her.
"It's true, you know." Kathryn told him, answering the silent question. "You are."
"I am what?" He queried, utterly baffled.
Smiling dearly, she spoke and gave him an even greater gift:
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Suz's Voyager Fanfic