|Disclaimer: Paramount owns all things Star Trek Voyager. I don’t. Only borrowing
them. Etc. Etc. Etc.
Rating: NC 17. Kids go play elsewhere. Contains adult material.
Summary: Tired of waiting for Kathryn, Chakotay pulls out of her life. Kathryn
struggles by on her own and Chakotay regrets his decision but before he
can do anything, Kathryn is arrested for murder on an alien planet and
sentenced to be executed.
IT CUTS BOTH WAYS.
By KAT LADY.
With supplies running low, they were forced to stop at a planet named Tallar, where the inhabitants appeared friendly enough. Kathryn managed to get through first contact well enough and within two days, they had secured a fair trade for what they needed.
On their final night in orbit, Kathryn had reluctantly agreed to attend the function which the Officials had informed them was in their honour and not wishing to offend, she found herself on the surface for the first time, all previous business having been conducted on board Voyager. Communications with the planet were no problem but something in the atmosphere made transporters refuse to function. Kathryn had not spoken of the evening with Chakotay, having barely discussed matters unavoidable. Where normally he would have accompanied her to events such as this, this time she went down alone, a fact not lost on him. He had made his point well and knew she had taken his words to heart. She hadn’t even asked him if he was attending.
Throughout the evening, one of the Official’s daughters had latched onto Chakotay, draping herself around him like a blanket. Many times, Chakotay had caught Kathryn watching him but each time their eyes had met briefly, she had turned away. He saw that she was not alone either, another Official named Denar, doing a good imitation with her of Chakotay’s self-appointed escort. He noticed the dress she wore was a complete contrast to the one she had worn the last time they had spent the evening together. This one was of a dark blue colour, with long sleeves and a high neck. It fell well past her knees and seemed almost matronly.
As the evening wore on, Chakotay noticed Kathryn relaxing slightly in the company of her ‘date’. The alien seemed to hang on her every word and his charm was starting to work on her. Kathryn knew most of his words were false flattery but found herself being taken in by them, her vulnerability and loneliness of recent weeks making her a prime victim for the taking. As she covertly watched Chakotay, for a minute she considered trying to make him jealous but immediately stopped herself. She had unconsciously played that game before and now that she was aware of it, knew it was childish. He had moved on for good and had made that fact all too clear to her and any other interested party. She tried to put him from her mind and concentrate on Denar.
With just enough of the alien planet’s wine in her system, she felt herself give in to the charm of the man beside her. It felt such a long time since anyone had appeared even remotely interested in her and the more she witnessed Chakotay with his new friend, the lonelier and more hurt she felt and she craved any form of contact that took away the feelings inside, even if only for a few hours. All the other crewmembers attending this celebration appeared happy and not one of them had come near her. As she eventually saw Chakotay leave the hall, the young woman with him laughing at something he had said, pain stabbed at her and she forced her eyes away from the painful scene, focusing all her attention now on the only one in the room who was even interested in her.
Towards the end of the evening, she found herself dancing with her escort and as he held her close, she tried to let herself feel wanted, the touch of this man being better than none. She knew he was flirting shamelessly with her and found herself trying to join in yet hold a respectful distance. When he suggested showing her the gardens, she had gone with him, her mental state of the previous weeks and the effects of the wine suppressing her normal wariness of a situation like this. She was by no means drunk, but the warm red liquid had relaxed her just enough.
The Official led her across the balcony surrounding the outside of the palace and down a flight of steps into lush gardens, keeping his conversation on trivial matters. Here the lighting was subdued and a fragrance filled the night air, causing a heady effect to Kathryn’s mind, already affected by the wine. She listened half heartedly as he described different plants and it took her a minute to realize that they had stopped walking.
When she focused on his face, she realized that he had stopped talking also and was holding her by her upper arms. She looked around her and could still see the palace and hear the music floating down to them but saw that there was no one else around. She hadn’t noticed how far they had walked and a faint warning bell went off in her mind and she pulled back a little.
“Denar, I’ve had a wonderful evening, but I really should be getting back to my ship.” She gave him a courteous smile and went to move off, expecting him to follow her lead. Instead she found her arm held firmly by his hand.
“My dear please. It’s still early and we’re just getting to know each other.” Kathryn looked down at his hand on her arm, trying gently to pull away.
“I’m sorry but I must get back. I’ve had a lovely evening and…”
“It’s hardly over yet….” He pulled her back to him and raised his other hand to her face, running a finger down her cheek. Kathryn grew a little more alarmed.
“No really. Thank you again for everything….” His grip grew tighter.
“You haven’t thanked me yet.” Kathryn’s head snapped up.
“Look if I’ve given you the wrong impression…” She tried pulling back to no avail and saw irritation grow on the face of the alien.
“Oh come on. Our species aren’t that different. I show you a good time and you show me the same. We’ve been friends all evening. I got your message and we played the game.” Kathryn’s thoughts swirled around and Chakotay’s words came back to her. She tried to think back over the evening, attempting to remember if she had indeed given the wrong signals but nothing came to her.
“Look you have the wrong idea…” He laughed now.
“Oh I don’t think so, my dear. Come on, you owe me.” His arrogance was coming through at this point and he pulled her back towards some shrubs. Kathryn grew really frightened now.
“Let me go. I owe you nothing…” She didn’t see his hand rise, only felt the hard slap of it across her face. She was stunned for a minute and that was all he needed. He pushed her against a wall she hadn’t seen, partly hidden by a bush. Her head banged painfully off the hard surface, dazing her and by the time she thought of hitting her comm badge, his hand had already torn it from her dress.
Kathryn was growing more and more afraid and realized the danger she was in. She felt him push her back against the rough stone of the wall and cried out as it dig sharply and painfully into her skin.
Denar held her against the wall, his hands pulling at her. Kathryn fought, it not occurring to her to scream for help in an ingrained belief that she could handle this herself and rely on the training she had received with Starfleet. Without warning, Denar’s foot swept at her legs, knocking them out from beneath her, sending them both to the ground, him on top of her, not letting up.
Chakotay’s words continued to echo in her head as the Official pinned her down and tore at her clothing. She still tried desperately to think how she could have led him on, part of her knowing that she hadn’t, that he had taken politeness and courtesy and twisted them to shape what he wanted to see, a come on. She knew just what Chakotay would think and that if he thought that way, there would be little chance of her convincing anyone else. Her recent vulnerability came to the fore however, and she suddenly found herself believing that she had asked for this, that it was her loneliness which had caused her to spend the evening in his company. She realized now that going outside with him had been a huge mistake but it still didn’t give him the right to attack her like this. All these thoughts came to her at lightening speed in a jumble, passing across her mind without any conscious thought on her part and she forced them away, concentrating on the struggle.
The fighter in her took over. She pushed hard against him, trying desperately to shift his weight off her but her strength was rapidly waning. She felt his hand pull at the bottom of her dress, pulling it up to her hips and then his knee press hard between her legs and she was powerless to stop him. He pressed down with both knees, almost in a kneeling position, parting her thighs despite her best efforts to stop him, pinching the soft flesh there. For a brief second, part of her actually considered letting him have his way and then she could hope that no one would ever find out, especially Chakotay. If she stopped her struggles, she could perhaps hide the injuries she had up to this point and maybe this alien might also stay silent on the matter but instinct won out and she found herself struggling harder than ever.
He was punching her face now, screaming at her to stop fighting him. His full weight now bore down between her legs and suddenly she felt him lean up and pull one leg back. With great force, his knee exploded against her pelvis and pain tore through her. As her scream came, she felt his hand cover her mouth and nose, cutting off all sound and her air supply with it. He pounded her head against the ground and she felt it connect with something hard. Blinding pain shot though her head and she saw lights dance in front of her eyes.
She fought with the last of her strength, her hands trashing around desperately, grasping for a hold on anything that might serve as a weapon. As she felt his hand pull at her panties, suddenly her fingers brushed against a hard object and she struggled to reach it. She closed her fingers around it and before she knew what was happening, instinct took over and her hand raised and she slammed the object against the side of his head as hard as she could. It slowed him as a bluish liquid escaped the wound, dripping on her. His hand now tightened across her face. She was fast losing consciousness and there was a roaring sound in her ears. As she lost the fight, she was dimly aware of shouts behind her and then phaser fire before the darkness began to invade her. She vaguely felt her attacker become a dead weight on top of her, then fall to the side and in the split second before her eyes closed, she saw Chakotay’s face.
She regained consciousness quickly with her airway now clear but found herself very confused. Pain consumed her but she realized that she was still lying on the ground and she wondered who all these people were, all gesturing and shouting above her. She was aware also of Tom scanning her and saying something about a broken pelvis and a concussion.
Chakotay’s face suddenly filled her field of vision and she saw his lips move then her name spoken in his voice but the two seemed separate. She registered the worried look on his face but in her present confusion, all she could think was that he would believe she had asked for this.
Other Officials now came to her but without her comm badge, she was unable to comprehend their words. She could make out that Chakotay and now Tuvok were shouting and arguing with the Officials and some guards but her mind couldn’t stay long on anything.
Her head rolled to the side and she saw Denar lying unmoving beside her, two aliens bending over him. Without warning, two guards approached her and bent down to her. With one of them on each arm, they pulled her roughly up from the ground. Kathryn screamed out in pain and heard Chakotay and Tom shout above her. She was dragged across the gardens and back towards the palace. Pain raged through her and she felt her vision blur again. As she lost consciousness once more, the only sound that came to her was Chakotay screaming her name.
Chakotay paced back and forward in the small office, his rage building with each circle he made. Tuvok sat calm and dignified while they waited for one of the Government Ministers to arrive. Chakotay fought to control himself, knowing that the Vulcan’s quiet demeanour would get them further than his own temper. He couldn’t shake the last images in his mind of Kathryn as she had been dragged away. He had watched helpless, the guards weapons trained on them, as she had been taken and had seen her lose her struggle to stay conscious. His last sight of her had been the two armed guards disappearing around a corner, her limp form pulled along by them.
After what seemed like hours, a tall alien male entered the room and introduced himself as Reann, Minister for Justice. Chakotay jumped in immediately, demanding to know where their Captain had been taken and if she had received medical attention yet. Reann showed no sign of emotion and just indicated for them all to sit. The feel of Tuvok’s firm hand on his arm got through to Chakotay and he forced himself into a chair. After a moment’s silence, Reann spoke.
“Your Captain has been taken into custody and is presently in our prison.” Tuvok interrupted.
“Minister, has Captain Janeway received medical assistance. It was plainly obvious that she required treatment for her injuries….” Reann just waved a hand dismissively.
“They won’t let her die, don’t worry.” The tone of his words chilled Chakotay and he looked sharply at the Minister.
“Just what the bloody hell is that suppose to mean?” Tuvok’s strong hand had returned to his arm, keeping him in the chair.
“It means simply that she won’t escape her trial first thing in the morning.” Chakotay shrugged off Tuvok now and jumped up.
“Trial….what trial…she’s done nothing. She’s the victim here. That bastard tried to rape her…” Reann now stood up from behind his desk, his eyes boring into Chakotay.
“Commander sit down. You have no understanding of this so let me enlighten you. Firstly, there is only one charge here and that charge is of murder and it is against your Captain. The man named Denar died as a result of the injury she inflicted on him.” Tuvok had to stand now and hold Chakotay back.
“Minister, you seem to have neglected the fact that it was I who fired upon this man…” Reann shook his head.
“It was the blow to the side of the head which killed him. Our species is very sensitive there. As to your point Commander…” He looked the First Officer squarely in the eyes. “We are actually aware of the crime of rape on this world but this was not one of those cases.” Chakotay couldn’t pull away from Tuvok’s strong grip on him but he still had his voice.
“Just what the hell do you call it when a man attacks a woman in that way, beating her senseless and….” Reann now raised his voice above Chakotay’s.
“We call it the man’s right.” The shock of hearing this actually stunned the two Starfleet Officers and Chakotay was too shocked to speak. Reann sat again.
“I will explain. The charge of rape on our world only applies when that act is committed against a stranger. Once a man and woman are acquainted, no such charge can apply. In this case, your Captain was WELL acquainted with the victim.” Chakotay fell into his chair. He just could not believe what he was hearing. “Come Commander, you were there tonight also. We all saw your Captain spend the entire evening with Denar. There was no one else near her. She was in his company, practically alone with him the whole time. We all saw them dance together and quite a lot of people witnessed them leave the hall together later, going into the garden.” Chakotay cut in.
“Are you saying that gave him the right to do what he did. They were strangers, met for the first time…” Reann appeared to grow bored.
“I have already stated the situation. In case you haven’t noticed or that you don’t care, there is a man dead tonight because of your Captain’s actions. She committed the crime of murder…” Tuvok cut in now and there was barely disguised anger in his voice.
“She committed an act of self defence. This man was attacking her and she fought back…” Reann smiled slyly.
“Perhaps she shouldn’t have…” Once again it was Tuvok who held Chakotay down.
“Bastard… So in your eyes, he had the right to just take… What if I’d done the same with Laray, that Official’s daughter? What would you be saying then? If I had….” The Minister showed no emotion yet again, almost rivalling any Vulcan.
“That would have been your right as a male, Commander. Her intentions were clear for all to see all night.” Chakotay was stunned beyond words. Tuvok at least was thinking straight.
“Minister, this trial. I demand to represent Captain Janeway…” Reann stood now.
“Lieutenant Tuvok, the prisoner is not entitled to any representation when the charge is this serious. She will however be questioned publicly and will have her chance to speak then. I will send details of the trial location and time to your ship. You are well within your rights to attend.” He stood, indicating that the argument was closed as far as he was concerned. “You may if you wish see her now, but only from the cell door. You may not converse with her in any way. You may also see her at the trial in the morning and if she’s found guilty, which seems highly likely, you may have a few minutes with her then before she receives her punishment.” Tuvok was the only one who seemed capable of thinking straight. Chakotay was clearly in shock.
“What is the punishment for this crime…” Chakotay was afraid to hear the answer.
“Death. Death by power shock.” Reann’s expression had not changed and he now turned and left the room.
Tuvok almost had to hold Chakotay up as they were led to where Kathryn was being held. The prison was old and smelled of damp and small rodent like creatures scurried for safety as they made their way through the long narrow passages. Eventually they came to a stop behind the two guards assigned to bring them here. The lighting was dim and Chakotay had to strain his eyes to see through the narrow grill of the door they had stopped at. He scanned the room and then cried out and fell back against the wall. Tuvok took his place at the door and saw for himself what had caused his Commander to react as he had. He saw Kathryn Janeway lying on a small dirty cot, still in her torn dress, dried blood remaining on her face. She appeared unconscious and no blanket covered her to offer any warmth from the cold and damp of the place. What caused the Vulcan the most distress was the fact that she had been chained down, her ankles attached to the end of the cot and her arms pulled over her head where her wrists were also chained. He closed his eyes briefly, willing himself to remain calm then turned to the guards.
“This woman has suffered a head injury and a fracture of the pelvic area. She NEEDS medical care… letting her sleep with a concussion…” His answer came in the form of a weapon pointed in his face, no verbal reply necessary.
Chakotay had pulled himself back against the door and was shouting to Kathryn but she never stirred. Within seconds he felt himself dragged back and then they were outside and told to return only when they were summoned. For the remainder of the night, back on board Voyager, Chakotay sat huddled in a corner of his quarters. They had exhausted all efforts to break through the atmospheric conditions preventing transporters from working and now they had to wait until morning.
Guilt and shame washed over Chakotay now as he sat with his head in his hands. He placed the blame for this entire matter solely at his own door. He knew that had he not acted as he had before, he would have accompanied her tonight and no situation like this would ever have arisen. He tried desperately to think back over the evening and his memories of her behaviour. Any time he had looked towards her, she had just been sitting quietly, listening to Denar. He had noticed her sad and lonely look but there had been nothing remotely sexual in her manner and her dress had been beyond respectable. He remembered nothing that could be used as any excuse by the Officials at the trial that she had been responsible. All he had observed had been a quiet woman, sharing conversation and a drink with someone and later one or two dances. He tried his best to think on the whole matter in as fairly a manner as he could. Nothing Kathryn had done the entire evening could possibly have given even the slightest indication of interest in anything other than politely passing the time with some conversation and a dance.
He thought back to when he had been standing outside with Laray, trying his best to get her to stand on her own and stay off him. He had first seen Tuvok leave the grand hall by a door nearby and scan the grounds and then Kathryn’s scream came. He had taken off at the same second as the Security Officer, following where they felt the sound had come from. The sight they had found had stopped him dead in his tracks for the briefest of seconds before he was aware of Tuvok pulling his phaser.
He saw Denar lying on top of Kathryn, her dress up around her hips, his lower body between her legs. He saw that the man’s hand was pressed firmly across her face, his other hand holding his head and what he assumed was blood running from a wound there. He heard himself shout and then move forward just as the beam of Tuvok’s phaser cut across his path and Denar fell over her then to the side. He remembered looking down at her, seeing her torn clothing and the blood on her face and on the grass beneath her head and then her eyes had closed. Within minutes, Officials and guards arrived and he remembered pulling her dress back down, determined to spare her from their prying eyes.
Now as morning approached, Tuvok hailed him with details of time and place for the trial which had been received. They met with the senior staff in the briefing room where these details were read out by Tuvok. His voice stayed soft as he read the transmission they had received and the other information submitted to them.
“The Captain has been charged with murder of an Official named Denar. There is a lesser charge of overt sexual behaviour, leading the victim to believe that she wished relations with him.” Chakotay jumped up but it was B’Elanna who did all the shouting, until Tom pulled her back to her seat. Tuvok was barely controlling himself.
“Her trial will take place in two hours and we may attend but not enter into any communication with the accused. She may speak for herself and if at the end of the hearing she is found guilty of her crimes, she will be executed in the manner set aside for this crime, that being death by power shock. At that time, the remains will be handed back to those responsible for the guilty party and they will then leave and dispose of the remains as they see fit.” Tuvok turned away from the others, fighting for control. Chakotay slammed his fist into the wall. After a prolonged period of shouting and yelling, it was Tuvok who once again brought calm to the group before him.
“This, while understandable, will not help the Captain. There is no way, as we know, to transport her from the surface and we are greatly outnumbered for any rescue attempt.” B’Elanna shouted now.
“So we just let those bastards kill her….” Tuvok remained in control, barely.
“Lieutenant, there is nothing we can do. I have exhausted every avenue of this. I have however, one hope.” He got their attention. “I have spoken with the Doctor. We know that technology on this world is not to our standard. We can only hope that what they speak of as ‘power shock’ is something similar to what was once a power supply on Earth called electricity.” B’Elanna burst in again.
“We wait until they’ve killed her?” Tom spoke for the first time.
“What are you getting at? I know about this electricity. In fact until the early 21st century it was used for executions on Earth, when they still punished offenders by death. Tuvok, it kills and….” Tom’s mind was racing. “Wait… electricity was also used as a power supply for homes, businesses…. People were often hurt or killed by…” He suddenly got Tuvok’s point.
“Some people survived a shock, even at high levels. They were resuscitated… Would we have time… to…” Chakotay started to think now.
“We can get the Doctor down there as one of the crew. If…” Now Harry spoke for the first time, everyone nearly having forgotten he was even in the room.
“She may not be found guilty….” Chakotay smiled despite the situation, mostly at the young Ensign’s innocence.
“Harry, she’s already been found guilty. We’re the strangers and he was one of their own. Some things don’t change.” Tuvok, the voice of reason took over again.
“Commander, with your permission, I suggest we finalize our plans and then head for the surface.” Chakotay nodded his permission.
They all filed out leaving him behind and he sat back down, taking just a few minutes to himself to offer a silent prayer that by the end of this day, Kathryn would be back at his side, alive and well and not away from him where he had pushed her. He vowed to himself that nothing would ever interfere with him being with her ever again, particularly his own stupid pride. He would be to her whatever she wanted him to be, whatever the pain to himself. No pain could be worse than this.
Kathryn awoke to agonizing pain, followed by fear at not knowing what was happening or where she was and the cold seeped into her. She panicked when she found her arms and legs chained. Her mind refused to order itself and only flashes of memory came to her. She heard the door of the cell open and suddenly there was a guard standing over her, screaming words at her she had no chance of understanding. Within minutes a second guard had joined the first and they leaned over her, unlocking the chains which bound her to the cot she lay on. They then hauled her to her feet but her legs gave way beneath her as pain stabbed up through her body and her head felt ready to explode. She screamed out in agony but the guards ignored her, re-chaining her hands in front of her now and dragging her out into the dimly lit corridor.
As they reached the outside of the prison, the daylight bit into her eyes and she tried to cover her face but the guards were not letting go of their grip on her. She was pulled onto a vehicle of some sort which moved off immediately and she tried again to turn her head from the blinding sun. Within minutes, the vehicle stopped and she was once again pulled up, almost passing out from the pain. Thoughts swam around in her head and more memories of the previous night came to her.
She was roughly dragged into a crowded room and then suddenly she saw Chakotay’s face and then Tuvok, Tom, B’Elanna, the Doctor. Their images rushed past her and then she was unsure if she had actually seen them at all or imagined them.
She felt herself pushed down into a chair and fresh pain shot up through her body and she screamed out again. She dimly thought she heard the voices of Chakotay and the others but then her attention was back on the guard in front of her, pulling her hands up and undoing the chains. He pulled each arm to the side and secured one wrist to each arm of the chair she sat in. Next he bent down and pulled her ankles apart, chaining each one to a leg of the chair. This action sent another wave of white hot pain through her and she cried out again. As quickly as he had appeared, the guard was gone and an Official came over to her and slapped her comm badge back on. For the first time now, their voices made some sense to her.
Chakotay would have been over the barrier when he saw the way the guard treated Kathryn, were it not for the glass shielding between them and the main area of the court. Seeing her suffer such pain tore at him and once more, his guilt and shame slammed into him. He saw that the others were as angry and unset as he was. The guards standing beside them, weapons at the ready, kept them in their places. Tuvok once again spoke with intelligence.
“We must hold it together now. The Captain will need our heads clear. We need to remain strong in order to help her.”
The court was a small room, separated from the public seating area by the glass partition and at the front on a raised dais, three Officials sat in what appeared to be robes. Only one Official stood before them and announced himself as the Representative of the Deceased and therefore the Accuser.
Chakotay never took his eyes off Kathryn. She looked around her, not focusing on anything and seemed extremely confused. Her eyes darted around as if looking for something she couldn’t find. He saw her tears and barely managed to hold his own back. He also saw perspiration beading on her face, probably from her pain. Eventually he looked to the Doctor.
“What’s wrong with her? Has she been drugged?” The Medic shook his head.
“I can’t tell from here or without scanning her but it’s possible this is a result of the concussion and her head injury.” Chakotay nodded and turned back to Kathryn. It enraged him to see that she still wore her dress, torn and bloody, her chest partly exposed and that there were still traces of dried blood on her face and neck. Dried blood also caked her hair at the back of her head. Bruising was clearly visible on her face and neck and one eye was partly closed with swelling. He saw the alien’s blood also, straining the front of her dress and standing out clearly on the white of her bra where it was exposed. He saw too that she was barefoot, her feet dirty and badly scraped and bruised from where she had been dragged along.
“The bastards didn’t even look at her…. her injuries and cuts…” B’Elanna laid a gentle hand on his arm and he gripped it, desperate for some kind of comfort. Tom spoke, his anger taking over.
“Why have they chained her down… it’s not like she can go anywhere…” One look from Tuvok and he shut up. Stating the obvious would not help.
They could all see how confused Kathryn appeared but also how afraid and in pain she was and they saw her pull at her chains, not understanding why she was like this.
The Accuser began speaking, calling for silence. He then turned to Kathryn and spoke loudly and clearly to her, his tone filled with distain.
“Confirm your name. Kathryn Janeway. Captain of the Starship Voyager.” Kathryn took some minutes to focus on him and his words and he repeated himself, finally getting through to her. When she answered, her voice was barely above a whisper.
“Yes…Kathryn…Voyager…” The Accuser continued, relating for the court the events of the previous evening. Everything he spoke of was one sided and Chakotay had to be held down by the others and ordered to stay silent by the Officials. The Accuser moved closer to Kathryn now.
“Captain, you may now tell the court about the events of last night.” She barely managed to look at him and even he could see the pain she was in, but he ignored it. “Denar, the man you were with last night.”
“Denar… the palace… he stayed with me… talking to me… was nice to me…” The Accuser cut off her words.
“You liked him?” Each answer from Kathryn took time.
“He was friendly to me… no one else came…”
“So you were happy to spend time with him?” Kathryn looked down.
“I was lonely…. alone…no one…” Chakotay felt his heart contract painfully at her words.
“Denar talked to you? Denar was nice to you?”
“So you played along with him, talked and danced, drank wine…” The Accuser was finding his job getting easier.
“Played… game… shouldn’t have…he warned me…” She looked up at the man in front of her and he could see how confused she was. A frown crossed the Accuser’s face.
“Who warned you?” She looked back at him, a frown crossing her face too.
“He...said…Chakotay… I didn’t know…he warned me…said I used him…but I was… he was nice and he talked to me…” Chakotay doubled over, pain tearing through him as he heard Kathryn repeat the words he had said to her in anger. The Accuser saw his chance and jumped on those same words.
“So, you’ve done this before, played with someone? You did it again last night? Led Denar on?” Kathryn was looking around her again, not aware of what she was saying, words tumbling around her head from the previous night and her last conversation with Chakotay on the holodeck, words from the man in front of her. Her tears continued to fall.
“Lead him on…used him…Chakotay left…”
“So you were alone, lonely yes? Now I repeat to you and the court so there can be no mistake. You had done this before with this man Chakotay? He left you and you did it again last night with Denar?” The Official leaned over her now, making sure his words were heard by her and that he would hear her reply.
“Yes…last night… Chakotay left and…I didn’t know…” A puzzled look crossed the Accuser’s face.
“What did you not know?” Kathryn looked at him now as if he should know what she meant.
“That…I love him…”
“Love who?” Kathryn stayed focused on him briefly and spoke as if he should also know who she meant.
“Chakotay…love Cha….” Her eyes swept around the room again, seeking what she couldn’t find.
Chakotay cried out and one of the Officials on the dais shouted at him again to stay silent or he would be removed. The others held him tightly. The Accuser turned to Kathryn again.
“You went willingly into the garden?” Kathryn was looking down again, as if trying to understand why she was chained but raised her head again at the Accuser’s words.
“See the flowers….”
“He was friendly and you turned away from him?”
“Yes… hurt…” The Accuser went in for the kill.
“He was friendly and you hurt him, killed him, slammed a rock into the side of his head and ended his life. You can’t deny that.” Kathryn was crying harder now.
“Yes…hurt…stop him…knew what Chakotay would say…” The Accuser saw his chance and took it.
“So you killed this innocent man so no one would find out, so this Chakotay wouldn’t find out.” He was twisting every word she said.
“Is this correct?” He shouted at her now and she jumped slightly.
“Yes…I’m…tease…” Chakotay cried out again when he heard this.
“You’re saying you teased him, that this was your game, that you’re a tease?” The Accuser couldn’t believe how easy this was.
“So you killed him, when you changed your mind?” To the Accuser, it was in the bag.
“Yes…” Kathryn continued to look around her, totally disorientated. “Chakotay….”
“The Accuser has concluded, Honours. There is nothing further to add.” He sat with a satisfied look on his face and nodded to the three Officials. Chakotay jumped up.
“She doesn’t know what she’s saying. She needs a Doctor…” He heard the Official shout at him but ignored it.
“She’s hurt, in pain, she’s concussed…” He felt himself pulled back down and for some reason, perhaps because he considered the matter settled, the Official now ignored Chakotay once he was sitting again.
Tuvok watched as the Officials whispered amongst themselves but already knew what their verdict would be. Finally the one in the centre spoke up.
“We have considered all the evidence, from what was spoken of here today and also from the scene of this heinous crime.” He turned to Kathryn.
“Captain Janeway, your words were heard by this court and we have reviewed the evidence from the scene, the stone you used as your weapon to end this man’s life, your blood placing you there and the witness accounts. You still carry the deceased’s blood upon your person, further proof of your crime.” Kathryn barely understood what was being said to her but looked down, seeing the blue stains still on her and she cried out.
“We have no other path open to us now but to order your execution for this terrible crime. You shall be taken to that death presently. This matter is concluded.” He closed the book which sat in front of him and stood, the other two following his lead.
Chakotay and the others all stood now, shouting their words above the cheers of a group of aliens none of them had noticed before, all sitting off to the left behind them.
Chakotay watched in agony as two more guards now undid Kathryn’s chains and pulled her to her feet, keeping a tight grip on her. She screamed out as they hauled her across the court and pulled her towards a small area of the room, separated by a curtain of sorts.
Chakotay heard Tuvok argue with the Accuser about the right of appeal, the right to be with her and heard the monotone reply of the alien, stating that there was no appeal and that the execution would take place immediately, that there was no time for them to converse with the murderer. Only B’Elanna and Tom, holding tightly to him, prevented Chakotay from ripping the Accuser’s throat out.
Guards appeared in front of them and indicated to them to follow, using their weapons to make their point. They were taken out and ushered along a corridor then came to a room where one entire wall appeared to be made of clear glass and told to sit again. Almost immediately a door in the room on the other side of the glass wall opened and the two guards holding Kathryn entered, followed quickly by the Accuser and the Officials. They saw that the cheering group was also present in a room on the other side, well separated from them but plainly visible.
Chakotay and the others watched horrified as Kathryn was dragged towards two metal posts in the centre of the room, which had shackles and wires attached to them. She was pulled between them and cried out in pain as her arms were pulled up over her head and secured into the metal binders at the top of the poles, one each side. Next the guards bent and pulled her ankles to each side and again secured her into the tight shackles. Kathryn screamed in agony and only the hold on her wrists held her up. Tears coursed down her face and Chakotay and the others saw the fear and pain she was feeling.
One of the Officials was reading out the charge and the findings of the court again as the guards attached the wires to Kathryn, at her wrists and ankles and then to her temples. They heard her cry out constantly, most of her words unintelligible except for Chakotay’s name. Her eyes swept around wildly as if still trying to find him with no success but she continued calling to him.
Chakotay called tearfully back to her but she seemed unable to hear him and some part of his mind knew that the room they were in was obviously soundproof. He realized that the Official was finished speaking and was standing back and nodding to a guard he hadn’t noticed before, standing off to the right beside a console. The shouts and cheers of the other group continued to fill his ears.
The next few minutes seemed to pass in slow motion and would haunt Chakotay and the others for years to come. He watched the guard nod understanding to the Official then turned his eyes back to Kathryn. A sudden silence surrounded him, broken only by Kathryn’s now quieter cries and then suddenly her scream as her body arched back, a surge of power running through her. The horrifying image in front of him seemed to freeze in his sight and he felt unable to move or breathe as the lights dimmed around them and Kathryn’s body continued to arch and convulse in the clutches of the electricity running through her, her frail body pulling desperately against the metal shackles. He vaguely heard another sound from somewhere and later he would realize it had been his own scream.
Then it was over and he saw her body slump down, only her wrist bindings once more holding her in place. He watched her head fall forward to her chest and then it was bright again, the drain on the lights power not there now. He heard the voice of one of the guards pronounce that life was extinct and that the execution had been a success. He found himself pressed tightly against the glass wall, the hands of the others holding him and still there was the shouting and cheering of the aliens filtering through.
ON TO PART THREE.
BACK TO STORIES INDEX ONE.
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