Of course, this takes place before the AT mission. ;-) "Fine-Tuning" by Lieutenant Sara Crusher and Lieutenant JG Cyanah Kaelyre Sara sat on the bed in her uniform slacks and dark blue Starfleet issued tank top. She watched as Cyanah finished putting on most of her uniform, smiling a bit when as she saw her flip her hair out from under the blue turtle neck. "It's not something easily explained with words, Cy," she said as she tried to figure out how to answer her questions about the link they now shared. "The biggest thing to remember is to relax and not to fight the thoughts that may seem to appear out of nowhere," she continued, never taking her eyes off Cyanah as she walked around the bedroom. "As for sending me something, it's like thinking. Ya know how when you're thinking to yourself, you hear that little voice in your head? Well, when you want to talk to me just do that; the only difference is that you'll have to be thinking of me in the back of your mind....Does this make any sense or am I making it confusing?" Cyanah sat down on the bed and took both of Sara's hands in her own. She smiled and tried to clear her mind and think only of Sara. "Yes, it does make sense now," came the clear reply into Sara's mind. Cyanah closed her eyes as she felt Sara's happiness at her success flood into her mind. "This... is like nothing I could have ever dreamed of. I feel so close to you." Cy's voice was as clear, as if it were coming from her mother or grandmother, and Sara couldn't keep from smiling. It was if the sound of Cyanah's voice and her thoughts just seemed to belong there. "I feel the same way," she began, pausing to ensure that Cyanah picked up on the thought, and then continued, "I've have never been this close to anyone before." Cyanah squeezed Sara's hands and replied, the method becoming more natural to her. "Nor have I.... it has taken some getting used to, having the thoughts and emotions of another person in my head... but now, I fear being without them." For the first time Sara could feel just how scared Cyanah was, and not only over the mission. "I know you are, love. So am I." Sara told her out loud as she looked into those green eyes she loved so much. "There's going to be a sense of emptiness that I would give anything in the world to keep you from feeling." Sara felt like crying but she told herself she wasn't going to cry anymore, at least about this.. Cyanah looked down at her hands and sighed, the joy over her success overshadowed by the impending mission. In just a few hours, she would be aboard a Cardassian ship and away from her lover - her Imzadi. Sara was her Imzadi in every sense that a non-Betazoid can have one, and Cyanah felt that intimacy despite her lack of Betazoid physiology. "I'll make it back, Sara... I don't think the Captain would have selected me to go if she thought otherwise." Looking back up to meet Sara's gaze, she continued, "We'll get more time together, I promise." Sara smiled a bit and nodded. She needed to hear Cyanah say that, to reaffirm that they would have more time together. "This whole thing has so many new aspects to it for each of us, it just seems unfair to me," she said quietly. "It would be grossly unfair, but no one ever said that life was fair. Anyone who says that is selling something," she said, playfully tickling that spot on Sara's side she discovered during their lovemaking. Despite the mood she had been Sara laughed, both at the pun made about one of their earlier conversations and at the sensation Cyanah's touch on her side was causing. "That's not fair," she said as she moved away from Cy. "You keep that up and you're not going to make it to the transporter room on time," she added with a wink. "We have a few hours," Cyanah said with a grin. "But, let's save that for a little later." She scooted next to Sara again and looked her in the eyes. "This feels just as intimate." Sara's smile grew at the sound of Cyanah's voice in her mind once again. "This just feels right to me, Cyanah," she told her as she wrapped her arms around her love. She loved the fact that Cy was becoming more comfortable with the telepathy. "And you're right... This is simply wonderful too." "We've been mainly focused on me so far, and that was likely necessary since I had never experienced telepathy before, but what about you?" Cyanah softly caressed Sara's cheek and continued, "Is there anything about us that you need to talk about? Has anything been tough to deal with?" Being a little surprised at the turnabout, Sara wasn't sure what to say. Once again, she was placed in a position of taking her own feelings into consideration. "There are some things... I mean, I've never been in a relationship like this before," she said before pausing to think. "I mean until now, I was just kinda... well, playing I guess... All I did was date guys, and well, those relationships ever went anywhere." Sara sat quietly for a few moments; she was babbling and what she was saying wasn't really making sense to her. She sighed deeply as she tried to reorganize her thoughts. "Being in an intimate relationship is new for me," she started, "But so is being in this type of relationship with another woman. It's all a little shocking," she added, hoping she had said it the right way. "I was wondering about that," Cyanah began. "It's normal for me, but the strangeness of this must be doubled for you." She placed her hand on Sara's thigh and gave it a loving squeeze. "I've never been in an intimate relationship before, either, but at least you're the gender I expected. Had you ever been attracted to a woman before?" "I don't think so," Sara said as she tried to think. "Not like this anyway, a crush or two maybe," she admitted. "So falling in love with me, your best friend, was a surprise for you. Have you had any troubles dealing with that?" Sara shook her head. "Not with being in love with you," she said with a smile. She liked saying that part; she'd get on the comm system and tell everyone if she was sure Cy wouldn't kill her, or that Morrigan wouldn't BBQ her. "But there have been times when I've had questions, or I've wondered about things. Like that woman at the shop on DS9." Sara sighed again. "Her reaction to seeing us as a couple being affectionate in public?" Cyanah nodded. "Yes, I've had to deal with that since leaving Delos, and it's been an eye-opening experience." After a long pause to gather her thoughts, she continued, "It has made me rethink my attitudes toward heterosexual couples on Delos. Having been on the other side of things, I can't find it in me to look down on them anymore." Sara looedk away from Cy for a moment as she nodded. "Betazoids are more open-minded about things, but I grew up on Earth. Humans are not so open to stuff." She grinned a bit as she thought about things. "I talked to my mother last night, and I slipped you into the conversation a bit. She reacted well." Sara turned back to Cy and wrapped her hand around the hand Cy had resting on her thigh. "But what do I do when people don't react well to us?" Even though her Delosian heritage and societal values were common knowledge among her Academy class, there were still those who insisted on harassing Cyanah and the few girlfriends she had during her time there. She had just gotten used to the negative reactions and wasn't really sure how she had done it, but she was determined to help Sara acclimatize herself to dealing with the prejudice of others. After some thought, she offered, "Feel sorry for them, Sara. Their minds are closed and they're too busy judging others to deal with their own issues. Trust me. I used to be just like them." Sara nodded even though she found it somewhat hard to believe that Cy would be like the people she was thinking about. "I've never thought of feeling sorry for them; I was always too busy being mad at people like that," she said softly as she thought about what Cyanah was saying. "But then again I've always been on the outside looking in," she added with a sigh. "There's no point in wasting your time being mad at them when you can't change them. I just pity them; it's the only way I've found to cope with it." Nodding her head again, Sara looked at Cyanah and smiled a bit. "I know you're right, but it's harder when you can actually sense what they're thinking," she told Cy as she felt herself snuggle closer to her. "But feeling sorry for them does make more sense than being mad at them. They are rather pathetic when you think about it." "Besides," Cyanah said, interrupting herself by softly kissing Sara on the lips, "there are better things to do than waste time being upset and hurt by them." She kissed Sara again and grinned wickedly. Sara giggled and returned the grin as she reached out to bring Cy closer. "I think we could find a quite a few things," she said softly as she ran her hand through Cyanah's hair. She bit her bottom lip when she felt Cy's hand on her side again, and kissed her deeply to keep herself from laughing. Cyanah stopped tickling Sara and instead wrapped her arms around her as she deepened the kiss. The outside world slipped further away as Sara felt Cyanah wrap her arms around her. Once again, everything revolved around the two of them. Sara broke the kiss only long enough to pull Cy's top loose from her slacks; she playfully pulled it over Cy's head and tossed it to the floor with a smile. Cyanah hungrily removed Sara's top and then embraced her lover once more, relishing the feel of their bare skin against each other. The rest of their clothing would soon follow as their bodies and minds merged once more before they had to part.