"An Engineer In The Armory"
Author: Kathy Rose
Summary: Trip pays a visit to the
armory to help Malcolm with some repair work
Disclaimer: I don't own any of
these characters; somebody with a lot more clout does. And there's no way I'm
making any money.
Sequel to: Who's
A/N: OK to archive, just ask first, OK?
The scene that greeted Trip as he stepped into the armory was exactly what he
had just left in engineering -- crewmen hustling to and fro, the smell of burnt
circuitry, the clang of a dropped tool. Peering around, Trip spotted Malcolm and
one of the armory staff seated on the floor working on a torpedo launcher.
Malcolm had come to him several hours earlier, asking for help in fixing the
launching mechanism. Trip had reacted in his usual way, giving Malcolm a hard
time. At the time, Trip had been up to his ears in repair work in engineering.
An attack earlier in the day had badly damaged the ship. The warp drive had been
knocked out, and Enterprise was limping along at impulse. Now late into the
night, everyone on his staff was pulling at least a double shift working to fix
Malcolm had a valid point, though. If they didn't have weapons, there was no
way they'd come out on top if they were attacked again, especially since they
weren't going anywhere very fast. As soon as he had been able, Trip left
engineering to come give Malcolm a hand.
"Hey!" he called out as he walked across the armory to where Malcolm was
working. "Got it fixed yet?"
Malcolm turned his head toward Trip, but kept his hands inside the launcher
where he held some wiring in place as the crewman soldered a connection. "I
wish," he answered, adding with a small smile, "Glad you could make it."
"Got here as soon as I could." Trip squatted down next to Malcolm to look at
what they were doing. "You really need to take all that out and replace it with
Trip knew he'd said the wrong thing as soon as he saw the disgruntled
expression on his friend's face.
"Don't you think I know that?" Malcolm responded, frustration as well as
irritation in his voice. "But that would take another six hours at least. My
priority right now is to get this fixed as quickly as possible. I'll worry about
doing it the right way when there's no threat of another attack hanging over
As Malcolm turned his attention back to the torpedo launcher, Trip stood up.
There was a fundamental difference between them, he realized. As chief engineer,
he wanted everything perfect and operating at top efficiency, but
took a more practical view, opting to get the work done as quickly as possible
so they could be ready for anything that might happen. Grudgingly, Trip admitted
to himself that Malcolm was right in this case. It wouldn't
matter how well
everything worked if they were all dead. Clearing his throat, Trip asked, "So,
what exactly did you want me to do?"
"That should do it, Foster," Malcolm said to the crewman, who got up and
moved off. Giving Trip his attention, Malcolm said. "A section of circuitry that
routes power from engineering to the launchers was knocked out. I'm not quite
sure what to do with it, it's such a mess."
"Let's take a look." He held out his hand, then hauled Malcolm to his feet.
He noticed Malcolm, a faint blush creeping up his neck, looking at their clasped
hands as he pulled him up.
Malcolm abruptly let go and turned away. "It's over here."
Trip followed, a slight grin on his face. He'd gotten much the same reaction
from Malcolm earlier in engineering. Malcolm had made an offhand remark about
needing to "get an engineer in the armory," and Trip had deliberately made sure
his answer could be taken in more than one way. Despite the
all been under, he was enjoying rattling Malcolm's cage, and wondered how hard
he would have to try before the blush went all the way to Malcolm's face.
The access panel to the circuitry was open, and Malcolm leaned in slightly,
using a probe to point out the problem area. Trip had to rub shoulders with him
to be able to see into the compartment.
"Yeah, it's a mess all right," Trip said, forgetting about teasing Malcolm as
he traced a line of circuitry with his finger. Lost in thought, he didn't see
Malcolm glancing at him out of the corner of his eye as their shoulders
continued to nudge against each other.
"This should go all the way over here," Trip said, indicating a charred
"I know that," Malcolm said, "but I can't decide how to go about fixing it.
There are several other systems going through here it could affect."
Trip pulled back out of the compartment and shook his head in exasperation.
"Replacing it would be best, but we don't have any spares for this. We'd have to
make it from scratch."
"How long would that take?"
"'Bout as long to bypass it with something else."
Malcolm let out a snort as he took a step back from the compartment. "I know
how you want to fix it, and we'll have to do it that way. I guess we'll won't be
able to do it fast this time."
Trip bit the inside of his lip to keep from grinning. Do it fast? His mind
was so in the gutter today. Didn't Malcolm realize he made a perfect straight
man, feeding him loaded lines so that it was all Trip could do not to say the
punch lines? Oh, what the hell.
"Won't be fast, but it'll be hard," Trip said with a suggestive wiggle of one
of his eyebrows.
Once again, a reddish tinge began to crawl up Malcolm's neck, and this time
Trip was rewarded by seeing it stain his cheeks as well.
"Uh, right," Malcolm stuttered.
Trip watched as Malcolm turned away to find a rag to wipe his hands which
didn't need wiping. He'd flustered the armory officer, which was something that
never happened. Trip thought it was rather an attractive look on the compact,
"Seein' as how you got the most capable engineer in your armory right now,
you're lucky," Trip said. "I'll get started on makin' replacements for what you
need. I know you want it fast, although I prefer to take it slower."
Malcolm blanched, the blush swiftly leaving his face. He wouldn't look Trip
in the eye, and Trip could barely keep from laughing.
"Let me see," Trip continued. "You got the tool I need down there...I mean,
Now Malcolm was bright red again. Trip was willing to bet that the only thing
that kept Malcolm from bolting was the fact that it was his superior officer
saying these things. Still, they had work to do, and he didn't want to push him
"Let's get to work. That thing's not gonna fix itself."
As the two men began pulling the ruined circuitry out of the compartment,
Trip couldn't concentrate on what they were doing. He kept thinking about the
possibility of exploring a new aspect of his friendship with Malcolm, who had
been embarrassed by his innuendos but hadn't told him to stop. Maybe when they
were done with this, he could find out exactly what Malcolm thought about him,
other than as a friend.
Done At Last is a continuation of this story.
material is posted here with the author's express permission. Please do not
repost this material without permission directly from the author.
Feedback? Comments? Thanks! Drop us a few lines:
Half a dozen of you have made comments
Liked the first part...
Loved the second as well...
Is there going to
be a next?
wow, that was funny, but really chatting up the only guy on the ship who's
properly trained to kik ure ass, clever n funny loved it
Yes, there is going to be a next part... and a part after that... and
probably a part after that... Glad you all enjoyed it.
Tee hee. Nice job! I enjoyed it! Innuendo was great!
V. funny. Here's to hopin for more..innuendos..
"Won't be fast, but it'll be hard" ...... Mwahahahaha!!!! Just downright