Title: Pennies and Pounds

Author: Joules Mer

Author's e-mail: julia_ocean_child@yahoo.co.uk

Author's URL: http://jmenterprise.popullus.net

Date: Posted to EntSTSlash  June 2, 2004

Archive:  Please ask first.

Fandom: Star Trek Enterprise

Category: Slash

Rating: G

Pairing: T/R


Series:  None

Beta: None

Spoilers: None

Disclaimer: Enterprise is the property of Paramount.  Characters just borrowed for fun.  No profit was, or will be, made by this story.  

A/N: A response, of sorts, to the June challenge.

    He'd never thought it would come to this.  For a very, very long time Malcolm had been confident that he'd never, ever, do this.  It wasn't his style at all.  In truth, though, he had come close once before.  So very close.  Such a long time ago.  He'd just barely managed to get a grip on himself and pull back before it was too late.  Before he did something foolish.  This time, however, his mind was made up.  This wasn't the sort of thing you steeled yourself to do without being prepared to follow through. The consequences were terrifying, inevitable, and horribly permanent.  This wasn't the sort of action you could take back after the fact.

    Malcolm had always been the cautious sort.  He carefully analysed and over analysed other people's interactions with him.  He'd always kept a part of himself back, protected, safe.  When it came to love, or the carefully choreographed set of motions that society perceived as love, he was the one murmuring the required phrase only in response to a declaration of affection from the other person.  Now, however, he was poised to do something rash.  Very rash indeed.

    But no, rash was the wrong word.  This had taken careful planning.  This had even taken manipulation.  He'd made sure he was alone now.  It was of the upmost importance that no one realize what he was about to do.  Footsteps sounded behind him and he froze.  Not now.  Not yet.  He didn't want to look.  Looking could make him chicken out.

    It was probably too late already, it was probably all too clear what he was about to do.  He took a deep breath.  Ready to go in headfirst, steeled for a fall.  He slowly turned to face his companion, eyes meeting a concerned gaze.

    "Malcolm?"  He couldn't let the heartfelt concern in that tone weaken his resolve.

    Malcolm looked up, smiled, and jumped, "I love you."

    Trip's eyes widened at the sudden, unsolicited declaration and Malcolm's heart fell.  After a stunned moment  the full import of the statement permeated Trip's brain and he began to smile.  Malcolm felt his heart arrest mid-plummet. "I love you too, darlin'."  Smothered in a warm embrace a puff of breath tickled his ear as the sentiment was repeated once more, "I love you too."