The De-Vel in the Details

A Vignette
by Cheryl Petterson

(Standard Year 2249)

Happy Birthday, Mylochka

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Daffy Gollub buzzed impatiently at her boyfriend’s cabin. It wasn’t like Pavel Chekov not to answer on the first signal, even if he had his nose stuck in some fascinating mathematical or navigational exercise posed by the love-of-his-life Vulcan First Officer. And she knew he was home – he had the day off.

“And if you went to the rec room without me, bubee, I’ll beat you to death with your damn teddy bear!” she shouted at the still not opening door.

She was about to go find Sulu and have him use the Security override when a voice growled, “Shut th’ fuck up, I comin’.”

The door slid partway open to reveal Pavel’s roommate, Noel DelMonde, wearing a rumpled pair of pajama pants that were clearly much too short for his long legs. His eyes were bloodshot and bleary, and he had the worst case of bed-head Daffy had ever seen.

“Sorry to wake you, Your Foul-Temperedness,” the chemist said brightly and, considering the engineer’s obvious condition, much too loudly, “but I’m looking for your farkaktah roommate.”

The reaction she got was not one she expected. Rather than a scowl and some comment about Pavel’s dumb-fuckery, the Cajun actually flushed, and muttered, “He still out.”

“Where is he?” Daffy demanded, already preparing to steal Sebastian to beat the Russian with.

“He here, he jus’ still out,” Del repeated.

“What do you mean, ‘out’?”

“Passed out. We – uh – had us a drinkin’ contest.”

Daffy narrowed her eyes. Del’s reticence was highly unusual – and just as suspicious. She folded her arms.

“Did he take the cure?”

Again, DelMonde blushed. “Uh – I don’ know. I not t’ink so.”

“All right, what’s with the face-reddening and sounding more stupid than your ridiculous accent usually makes you sound?”

That elicited a response she was used to. Del’s face darkened and he snapped, “Fuck off, Gollub.”

“Well, at least I know it’s really you,” she commented, and pushed past him – then stopped dead in her tracks. The cabin was a disaster area. The desk chairs were overturned, there were data cassettes all over the floor, along with several empty bottles, some of vodka, others of bourbon. Two uniforms – or what was left of two uniforms – decorated the computer tables, the grillwork, Del’s guitar and his bed. The other bed was occupied by a naked, bruised, sprawling, softly snoring Pavel Andrevitch Chekov.

Daffy blinked, then her face twisted into a scowl. “You tried to kill him,” she stated.

“If I try that, he’d be dead,” Del muttered, looking neither at her nor at his sleeping roommate. “As it is, I wish I was.”

Daffy considered his attitude for a moment, then took a deep breath and said, “Okay, what did you do?”

“Why th’ fuck I gonna tell you fo’?” the Cajun demanded belligerently.

“Because if you don’t, I’ll wake Pavel and ask him – and you know what kind of version he’ll tell,” Daffy replied.

The engineer stared at her, his gaze hostile and aggressive, then he winced and glanced at Pavel, then around the room. He took a few steps, retrieving a bottle from the shelf above the beds that wasn’t quite empty, slammed what was left, then sat down on his bed, gesturing Daffy to do the same.

“I want your word it not go no further,” he growled. “Cause if it do, I swear….”

Daffy held up her hand. “Clavist’s honor,” she said, then grinned impishly. “Not that I’m afraid of you, you drunken sot.”

“Yeah, you jus’ keep quiet outta th’ goodness o’ your heart,” Del muttered.

Daffy shrugged, knowing that he knew it – whatever it was – was going into her blackmail file.

The engineer gave a grudging sigh, again glancing around the room. Daffy rose and went to the replicator, calling up a bottle of bourbon and handed it to him. His smile was weak, and he took a long swig as she resumed her seat next to him.

“It not exactly my fault,” he began slowly. “It got somet’ing t’ do wit’ the way his brain react when he drunk.”

“You’re admitting he has one?” Daffy broke in. “That’s a first.”

“Jus’ shut up an’ listen, okay?” the engineer scowled. “It affect the psi-nullness somehow, an’….”


Pavel Chekov was looking forward to a quiet evening. Daphne was working second shift in preparation for the joint rec-day they’d both agreed to take and as far as he knew his roommate was scheduled to perform in a Cataclysmic Nondenominational Concert. He had spent several peaceful hours reading the latest journals on astro-navigation and quantum physics. He was preparing to begin working on some mathematic problems Mr. Spock had posed to him when his cabin door hissed open. Noel DelMonde stormed in, tossing his guitar on his bunk, and, muttering obscenities, went to the replicator and returned with a bottle of bourbon.

Pavel did his best to ignore the sound, but the more the engineer drank, the louder his complaints became. Eventually, the Russian was unable to avoid making out the words:

“Damn fucked-up bullshit!”

“Who th’ fuck she t’ink she is?”

“She got no call to throw it in my face like that.”

“Shee-it, she t’ink I not able t’ feel her slobberin’ all over that green-skinned motherfucker like they was…”

“Noel, will you please keep your comments to yourself?” Pavel finally broke in.

“Who ask you t’ listen!” the Cajun retorted angrily.

“You are making it impossible not to,” was the dry reply.

“Fuck you!”

“No, thank you. You are not my type.”

DelMonde growled at him and Pavel hid a self-satisfied grin for his own wit. He turned back to his computer, and heard the engineer rise from his bed and stalk over to him.

“You not nobody’s type,” DelMonde declared. “Daffy only look twice at you ‘cause I not here when she signed aboard.”

“Hardly,” Pavel sniffed.

“Oh, I could tell you stories, son…”

“In which I have absolutely no interest.”

"Afraid o’ the competition?” the engineer responded nastily.

The Russian felt the beginnings of true annoyance, colored with a small twinge of competitiveness. He stiffened, and without looking up, replied, “There is no competition which does not involve engineering techniques or musical talent in which I would not prove victorious over you, Noel.”

“You wanna bet on that?”

“I have proven in the past that I can receive just as much female attention as you, that you cannot out drink me, that…”

“Shee-it, I never try t’ out-drink you, ya dumb-fuck!” DelMonde declared. “There no point in a contest I know I win.”

“You’ve never tried because you hate to lose,” was Pavel’s calm response.

Mais, why we not settle that one right here an’ now,” the engineer challenged.

“You are truly pathetic, Noel.”

“An’ you th’ galaxy’s biggest chicken-shit! Oh, you talk a good game, but…”

At that, Pavel rose, turning to face his roommate. “I am not!”

The grin on Noel’s face was most disconcerting. “Prove it!”

His jaw set stubbornly, Pavel snapped off his computer and went to the replicator. “You can program this for vodka, yes?”

“How many bottles you want?” DelMonde challenged.

“Ten,” the Russian replied, then, seeing the smirk in the engineer’s eyes, added, “To start with.”

DelMonde laughed, and the challenge was on.


There had to be more than simply drinking, Del knew. Pavel Chekov could drink for days on end provided he didn’t have to do anything but sit and drink. And now that he’d started the contest, the Cajun not only had to win it, he had to wipe the smug little smile off the Russian’s face. He got two shot glasses from the replicator along with the vodka and an equal number of bottles of bourbon, then rearranged the furniture in the cabin into a small obstacle course.

“These th’ rules,” he declared when he and Pavel were both seated on their respective bunks.

“Rules?” Pavel scoffed. “Since when do you follow rules?”

“Since it a contest, dumb-fuck,” Del replied scornfully. “After each shot, you gotta be able t’ walk to th’ door an’ back wit’out trippin’ or knockin’ anyt’ing over.”

“Why me?” Chekov asked suspiciously.

Mais, me too, ya moron,” Del informed him. “It a contest.”

The Russian gave a mollified ‘hmmph.’

“An’ since I had me ‘bout a third of this here bottle already, you have to match it befo’ we start.”

“That seems fair,” the Russian agreed, and opened the first bottle of vodka, pouring shots until the level in it matched what was in Del’s bottle.

“So the first one who cannot navigate your obstacle course loses?” he asked.

Del frowned. Chekov seemed much too confident. Clearly he didn’t think the obstacle course would cause him much problem. Thinking quickly, Del grinned. “Non,” he said. “That only th’ beginnin’. The firs’ one who trip or make somet’ing fall loses a piece o’ they clothes.”

Pavel frowned. “You wish to play strip-drinking?”

“For starters,” Del replied wickedly.

“To what end?”

“T’ see who a chicken-shit,” Del answered with another grin.

The Russian chewed his lower lip for a moment, then set his jaw. “Agreed.”

“I reserve th’ right to add more challenges,” the Cajun warned.

“And I’m allowed to add some as well,” Chekov shot back immediately.

“Not’ing involvin’ math or physics,” Del objected.

“Or involving engineering or music,” Pavel retorted.


“You go first,” the navigator said.

Del rolled his eyes, but poured a shot and downed it. Then he rose and, with fluid grace, sauntered around the chairs, potted plants, his working light box, a stool on which he’d placed Sebastian, and stacks of data cassettes to the door and back.

Chekov sniffed, then took his own shot of vodka and repeated Del’s performance with only a little stiffness.

Several more rounds were completed without incident, and the second bottles were opened. Del added the two empties to the course, daring the navigator to object. Pavel glared at him, then went to the replicator, retrieving an entire tray full of shot glasses.

“In my homeland,” he said, placing the tray on the shelf behind both their beds, “it was customary to attempt to stack used shot glasses into a pyramid to test one’s coordination.”

“We gonna need a whole lot more ‘an that,” Del returned.

“We can make retrieving more as they are used another facet of the contest,” the Russian asserted.

“Whoever place th’ las’ one gotta get more wit’out topplin’ ‘em?” the engineer suggested.

“No, the other contestant,” Pavel countered. “Not having to get more is a reward for correct placement.”


After another bottle, Pavel was forced to retrieve more glasses.

After the third, he stumbled in the obstacle course, knocking over the data cassettes, and Del crowed as he dourly removed his uniform tunic.

“I’da gone fo’ a boot firs’.” The Cajun commented.

“Which would make it more likely for you to trip again,” Chekov retorted.

A few more shots down the line, Del lost his balance and fell over a chair. He dutifully removed a boot as Chekov chuckled. The next round, Pavel again had to get more glasses, and he knocked the growing pyramid over as he rose to do so.

“Take it off, take it off!” Del chanted.

“That was not part of the rules,” the navigator protested.

“It is now!” Del laughed.

“Why do you want me naked?” Chekov questioned as he removed his pants, looking fairly ridiculous in briefs, undershirt and boots. “Are you that eager to see my body?”

“Pukin’ ain’t a part o’ th’ contest,” the Cajun returned.

“It should be.”

“You only sayin’ that ‘cause you never do.” Del grinned, then began singing.

“Want some whisky in your water, sugar in your tea
What all these crazy questions you askin’ me?”

“No singing!” Pavel shouted.

“That ain’t part o’…” Del began.

“It is now!” Chekov retorted.

Del subsided with a chuckle. “Your turn,” he said, “an’ mind you start th’ pyramid again.”

“I hate you,” the Russian muttered.

Del only laughed.


By 3:00 AM, there was little left of the obstacle course. Pavel was stark naked and Del had only his briefs on. Neither man was coordinated enough to reform the course, and the pyramid was nearly to the ceiling, making it impossible to add to it and still make it a pyramid shape. Del had suggested that Pavel use a chair, and the Russian had stubbornly tried it, only to fall off it, landing on his roommate with a loud “Oof!”

Del immediately pushed him to the floor. “Get off me, ya dumb-fuck!”

Chekov started laughing, interspersed with complaints of “Ow! Ow! Ow!”

In moments, Del was laughing as well. He reached for the tenth bottle of bourbon, looked around for a shot glass, then said, “T’ hell wit’ it,” and took a long swig.

“Not fair!” the Russian protested. “You’re cheating!”

“What, you t’ink I gonna take itty bitty sips while you swallow a gallon at a time?”

“You would,” Pavel accused.

Non, that more your style, I be t’inkin’.”

“I do not cheat!” the navigator protested.

Del grinned. “I could make you.”

“No, you could not.”

“Let’s try it.”

Closing his eyes, Del sought for the nothingness that was Pavel’s brain. In his inebriated condition, he was certain there must be some way to get in. It was hard to focus, but he was determined…

“Stop that!” Chekov snapped.

“You feel that?” Del chuckled.

“I – I don’t like it…” Pavel replied uncertainly.

“You feel all nasty an’ dishonest now, non?”

The Russian put a hand to his forehead. “I feel… I feel…”

Del concentrated harder, trying to force his way into the void. “Here I come, li’l baby bear…” he crooned.

Then the emptiness that was Chekov’s brain began to stir, becoming something far greater than nothing. There was a faint echo of sentience, and something that sounded like ‘yum yum.’ A warning flashed through Del’s awareness, but before he could truly comprehend it, the void began pulling at him.

Heat and power and desire, a compelling promise of quiet and peace, darkness far deeper than the bluest of sapphire’s blue. Eager comfort, persuasive, undeniable potential…

And Del found himself drawn to it like a moth to a flame. Every fiber of his being responded, wanting, needing that pledge of perfection. He found himself staring into wells of soft brown, leaning toward ruddy lips that were parted in a soft exclamation of surprise. A tiny, tiny part of his brain was screaming obscenities at him, but the potent draw of the void silenced it.

“Pasha,” he croaked, and saw Chekov shudder helplessly.

“Noel,” the Russian breathed.

The kiss was closer to mashing lips, passion overtaking both of them. Hands groped, body parts pressing together indiscriminately. The only sounds were inarticulate moans and groans of hunger and desire as the position of dominance was exchanged over and over again. The sense of competition remained, each vowing they could make the other want to be taken, and it was the only impediment to the completion they both thirsted for.

In the hours that followed, neither would remember who had won – or if both of them had.


“You schtupped my Pasha!?!” Daffy shrieked and Del winced.

“Hell, cher, I not know,” he groaned. “I t’ink I mighta, but…”

Daffy began reaching for anything she could get her hands on, throwing it at Del’s head. “You pervert!” she screamed. “You fucking, manipulative, scheming pervert!!”

“It not no scheme…!” Del began, trying to shield his head. “He start it!”

“You were the one who tried to fuck with his head!” the chemist retorted hotly.

“How I gonna know he react like that?”

HE reacted!?!” Daffy cried.

His damn void did!” the Cajun shouted.

Daffy shrieked incoherently and gave up on throwing things, using her fists to pummel at Del’s naked chest. “And how did you end up in Pavel’s pajamas!” she demanded.

“Fuck if I know,” Del muttered, trying uncoordinatedly to grab her wrists.

“Must you keep yelling like that?” Pavel’s voice moaned, and Daffy immediately left Del’s bed, going to the Russian’s side.

“Oh, bubee, I’m so sorry!” she gushed. “Did he hurt you?”

Chekov raised his head, opening eyes that were more bloodshot than DelMonde’s – assuming such a thing were possible. “Hurt me?” he wondered. He made a feeble attempt to rise, then fell back to the mattress. “Bozhe moi, my head!” he groaned.

“Do you need me to call McCoy or Han?” Daffy asked anxiously.

Again Pavel glanced up at her. “For a hangover?” he managed, then blinked. “Dafshka?”

“Yes, I’m here,” she soothed. “Do you want to press charges?”

“Hey, back th’ fuck up!” Del protested.

“Press charges?” Pavel repeated. “For what?”

“For whatever that – pervert – did to you!” Daffy replied with a glare in the Cajun’s direction.

“What he… Dafshka, we simply got drunk.”

“You don’t remember?” she pressed.

“Remember? Remember what?”

“The fuckin’ dumb-fuck contest,” Del suggested sourly.

Pavel put his head down again. “Yes, I remember that,” he said. “Did I win?”

Daffy stared challengingly at Del, who sighed, and shook his head. “I t’ink…” he began, and Daffy’s chin came up in a defiant, vicious warning.

“We both passed out at the same time, didn’t we?” Chekov muttered unhappily.

“Yeah,” Del conceded, and Daffy gave a short definitive nod.

“When I’m recovered, I want a rematch,” the Russian stated.

“No fuckin’ way,” the engineer growled.

“You can say that again,” Daffy agreed.

“Then I win by default,” Pavel said, his voice smug and cheerful despite his condition.

“Now wait jus’ a fuckin’ minute…” Del protested.

“He wins by default,” Daffy asserted, and gave the engineer one more baleful glare. “Doesn’t he, Del.”

And I won’t say another word about your perversion, floated to Del’s aching, unprotected mind.

You a fuckin’ bitch, Daf, he answered, but nodded miserably.

The chemist gently stroked her lover’s hair. “When you’re feeling better, I’ll help you clean up this mess,” she promised.

Spasiba, priozhne,” the Russian groaned, and closed his eyes. “I’m sorry to have ruined our recreation.”

“I know who to blame,” she told him with a final glance at DelMonde.

Del moaned softly and lay down on his bed, hoping against hope that the whole thing had been nothing but a bad, alcohol-fueled nightmare.

An’ if I not t’ink ‘bout it too much, he vowed to himself, that jus’ what it’ll be.

The End

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