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A Matter of Taste

Title: A Matter of Taste

Author: kageygirl

E-mail: kageygirl@gmail.com

URL: http://www.kageygirl.com

Feedback: Please and thank you.

Archive: Ask first.

Fandom: Star Trek: Enterprise

Pairing: Hayes/Mayweather

Rating: G

Disclaimer: Have they been to the planet where the wearing of clothing is punishable by death? No? Then they ain't mine. No money being made here (though if the producers wanted to run with the "clothing=death" idea, I hereby cede all rights to it).

A/N: A piece of silliness written for the maco_love list. Damn you, PTB. ::sniff::

Summary: Trip pointed at Travis with his beer bottle. "He likes getting thrown around by the MACOs."

"Damn." Travis watched his last bottle cap glance off the edge of the trash bin and skitter along the deck.

Trip snickered into his beer. Malcolm crossed his arms over his chest and cocked his head at Travis. "Well, all those off-duty hours you've been putting in with the MACOs clearly haven't gone into marksmanship." Malcolm lifted his eyebrows, giving him a half-smirk. "What have you been up to, Travis?"

Trip pointed at Travis with his beer bottle. "He likes getting thrown around by the MACOs."

Travis leaned forward in his seat and stared pointedly at Trip. "I'm not the only one, am I, sir?"

Trip paused with the beer bottle partway to his mouth, lips curving into a grin, and gave a nod of acquiescence. "Point. But we weren't discussing me."

Malcolm rolled his eyes at the both of them, then stood up to get another beer. He eyed Travis as he passed him. "Any one among them in particular? Or do you simply have a weakness for fatigues?"

Travis glared at Trip, who had a wicked gleam in his eye, but Trip ignored him. "Well, to hear Hoshi tell it, Travis here was breathing pretty hard after that altercation on the bridge." He looked at Travis from the corner of his eye. "Trying to grab Hayes's… pistol."

Malcolm looked scandalized, Trip looked smug, and Travis gave in and chuckled. "He's pretty strong," he said, grinning, without bothering to deny the implication.

Malcolm finally huffed out a breath, and Travis was relieved to see Trip turn his attention to the other man. "Well, hell, Malcolm, you can't blame him. You got pretty sweaty with Hayes, there, yourself. Though I think y'all played a little rough." Trip tapped the bottle rim against his lips thoughtfully. "Damn, I'm the only one who hasn't gotten rolled by the major. How'd that happen?"

Travis bit his lip to keep from laughing. Malcolm stared at Trip for a long moment, then smiled suddenly and flicked his bottle cap sharply at Trip. "Bastard."

Trip rubbed his forehead where the cap had struck him, smiling back at Malcolm. He picked the bottle cap out of his lap and squinted at in speculation. "That reminds me." He pointed at Travis. "He lost the match. How's he gonna pay up?"

Malcolm got the faraway look that Travis usually saw when he was calculating torpedo yields in his head, and Travis had a sudden sinking feeling.


Though the training area was deserted, Travis kept his head down and walked quickly across the room. Trip had sworn he'd keep watch, but he hadn't been able to keep a straight face for more than a few seconds at a time since Malcolm had decided on Travis's forfeit, and Travis didn't trust his honor to override his sense of humor.

Using the code Malcolm had given him, he popped open the locker, fastened the makeshift sign to the inside of the door, and closed it with an unsteady shove.

Someone cleared his throat behind Travis.

Travis didn't even jump, because of course it was going to happen. Some part of him had even expected this. So when he turned around, plastering on a grin and murmuring, "Major," he was mostly calm, as if he'd rehearsed this.


"Ensign." Hayes nodded cordially, giving him a level, measuring gaze. So much like Malcolm, though Travis suspected that both men would rather swallow warp plasma than admit such a thing, despite their recent détente.

Hayes took a step forward, and Travis backed out of his way, fighting the urge to drop his head like a guilty schoolboy. The fact that he'd been caught pulling a schoolboy prank wasn't helping any. Though the MACOs had deferred to the Starfleet officers since they'd come aboard, Travis had the distinct feeling that he couldn't leave until Hayes had dismissed him.

Hayes opened his locker with deliberation, pushing the door back until it rested against the adjoining, displaying the sign Travis had taped up.

Hayes is a Major Hunk

Hayes stared at the sign for what seemed like forever, expressionless. Travis willed himself not to fidget.

Hayes eventually gave Travis a sidelong glance, the corner of his mouth quirking up. "Thank you, Ensign. You're not so bad yourself." He dipped his chin in a brief nod, and Travis nodded back, the movement jerky with relief. He made his escape silently, pausing only briefly at the door.

He would have sworn Hayes was chuckling. But he knew no one would believe him.