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Until Death Do Us Part

Authors: Gabbie
Categories: Tony/Maya
Characters: Tony Verdeschi
Show Year: Y2
Rating: PG
Date: 1999
Tragedy strikes Alpha, and Tony struggles to cope with a devastating loss.
Average Rating: 3.0/5 (based on 1 reviews)

His quarters were cool and he had been inside them, alone and surrounded by darkness, for three days. They were days that he couldn't really remember and ones that he would probably never want to remember. Hesitantly he brought the photograph in his hand up to his face. With the dim lighting he could not make out much detail. Perhaps it was best that he couldn't.

Inside he felt fear that was so unlike anything that he had ever felt before. He was desperately trying to keep it locked away, at a distance. He knew that if he let it surface he might not be able to go on. He wasn't sure that he had the courage or the desire to go on but he had made the promise to do so. He placed the photograph gently down on the bed and heaved himself up. Blindly he headed to the bathroom, his movements more like a zombie than that of a human being.

After some time in the shower he became aware of the warm water as it cascaded down, the warmth slowly drawing his body out of the catatonic state that it had been in. With the water's rush also came the memories, hurtling at him with an intensity that made it impossible for him to ignore them. With the tears came the feelings of pain and despair. As they washed down his face he leaned against the shower stall and sobbed. His soul had never felt so empty as he cried for what he had, in the past week, realized that he had had and for what he had so suddenly lost.

With the destruction of the Dorcon ship and the threat of attack gone the base had enjoyed a week of peace. The Alphans were a hardy lot and they had simply begun the process of picking up the pieces as they had done so many times before. Although there was cause to grieve there was also reason for celebration. Most of Alpha's vital systems were undamaged and the Commander had managed to rescue Maya and both returned safely to Alpha. For Tony the following days had been the best in his life and he remembered so clearly how everything had happened.

He had been so thrilled to have his beloved Psychon back again; the Dorcon attack had made him realize exactly what it was that he felt for Maya and the enormous depth of those feelings. Acting upon impulse on the way to lunch he pulled Maya inside their quarters on the pretense of getting something that he had forgotten. Once inside the door he wrapped his arms around her and kissed her passionately.

"Tony." She protested weakly and not effectively. "Surely not again?" she asked with a demure smile on her face. "We don't have time, we've got work to do."

"Maya," he insisted, "we have time for this."

He pulled her towards their couch and then confused her by kneeling down on the floor and placing his hands on her knees. He inhaled and quickly, before he lost his nerve, he spoke. "Maya, after everything that's happened, well, I can't wait. Please," he hesitated, "What I'm trying to say, that is ask, will you marry me?" Then he had anxiously held his breath and waited for her answer.

The look on her face went from disbelief and then to amazement. Another smile then crossed her face.

"You're serious, aren't you?" she asked in that voice that weighed heavily with her unique Psychon accent.

Tony nodded. "If you'll have me, yes I'm very serious."

She said nothing at first, just continued to gaze at him and then in a very quiet whisper she spoke. "Oh Tony, yes."

Tony let out a huge sigh of relief and then they both laughed.

"God I love you." He said as he pulled her close to him.

She giggled as his warm breath touched her skin. "I love you too. What brought this on?" she asked curiously.

"I don't want to be without you. Ever." He told her. "I want you by my side, as my wife. Now."

"Right now?" she teased.

Kissing her neck he murmured, "Tonight wouldn't be quick enough."

"We're going to be late."

"Let them come find us." He said with a reckless air.

Of course, nobody had come to find them, although Tony did remember that about half an hour later the Commander had buzzed him, asking if he had forgotten how to get to Command Center.

The following evening they were married in a very quiet and intimate ceremony with just their closest friends, John and Helena, Alan and Sahn, and the Frasers, in attendance according to Maya's wishes.

The reception that followed was anything but quiet. The security section just couldn't let their boss get hitched without throwing a wild party. What was supposed to have been a quiet gathering ended up being a full-scale blowout.

They were surrounded by loud music, plenty of beer, and the best food Alpha had to offer. This time though, neither Tony nor Maya had responsibilities to return to in the morning. Once Maya's initial reluctance for such a wild gathering faded, she and Tony danced and drank with wild abandon.

Tony now remembered that even the Commander had gotten a little tipsy, something that Verdeschi had never seen. He distinctly remembered John indulging Maya in the traditional father and daughter dance and then throughout the reception enjoying several intimate dances with Helena. Tony hadn't seen John look that content or so unstressed in years. He could still picture his lovely bride, in a borrowed white dress, her smile captivating and her happiness infectious. For a change Moonbase Alpha had celebrated life and the wondrous joy of love.

The remaining night and following day had passed in a delicious blur for Tony and Maya as they indulged in private time just for themselves. And then the fantasy came to a horrible end. Tony had awoken early the following morning and had gotten ready for duty quietly, letting his new bride sleep away until the alarm would wake her. He left her a note to meet him for lunch when she was done in the science department and kissed her softly on the forehead before sneaking out of their quarters.

It had been business as usual that morning with Tony in charge of Command Center as Koenig had met with Maya in the science department to review some personnel logs. A short time before lunch Maya contacted Tony and informed him that she and the Commander were on their way back to Command Center and that she expected to have lunch with her husband.

Tony vividly remembered her pretty smile and the way she had almost carelessly pulled her long auburn hair back in a ponytail with a pretty red ribbon. Strands had come undone during the morning reviews and framed her exotic face in what Tony thought a very attractive look for her.

Five minutes later all hell broke lose as Sahn had detected a movement near Alpha. Immediate scans confirmed it to be a small vessel. While it wasn't big it soon became clear that it wasn't friendly. It came in quickly; firing random shots down on the base.

Tony had activated the Alphan defense systems immediately while Carter and Fraser scurried to put two Eagles in flight. Despite these measures Alpha still shook as the alien ship hit them. Quakes rumbled throughout the base. Shortly before Carter and Fraser reached the ship it sent a brief message. Their message was short. They were a scout craft that had been returning to the Dorcon ship and having found it destroyed they were now seeking out those responsible. They had one mission, destroy Alpha in retaliation for the murder of the Archon.

It soon became apparent that the tiny scout ship didn't seem to have the same kind of shielded protection as the mothership. A burst from Bill's Eagle sent it spinning. Their pilot quickly regained control of the craft. It became rapidly evident that the tiny vessel was aimed directly towards the middle of the Moonbase, an apparent suicide run. Carter just narrowly managed a direct hit to the craft. It exploded above the base, still at a safe distance margin. It exploded high above the lunar base and Alan and Bill quickly returned to Alpha.

Tony had wiped his hand across his forehead and realized he was sweating. Sahn swung around in her chair and gave him a smile. Then the door to Command Center slid open and a tech ran in, followed by puffs of smoke.

"We've got people buried out here." He choked. "In the corridor."

Quickly Verdeschi was out of Command Center and racing up the corridor where he discovered that a large part of the overhead ceiling had tumbled down. Electrical conduits, ceiling tiles, and the under structure, including a metal girder, now filled the corridor. One of the communication pylons had also toppled, obviously sent crashing when the ceiling gave way. Tony began pulling and tossing debris to his side along with others including Pat Osgood. Pat said he thought that at least three people were pinned under the debris.

It was with a gasp of horror that Tony recognized Maya's hand under the debris. Adrenaline pumping, he moved like a possessed madman. With superhuman strength he and Pat heaved on the girder in a valiant attempt to move it.

Bill and Alan appeared, back from their mission, and they lent their muscles as well. Commander Koenig was pulled from the wreckage first, followed by Yasko. It appeared as though the Commander might have been trying to push Yasko and Maya out of the way or protect them from the falling debris. They would never know, as it was quite obvious that their leader was dead, hopefully he hadn't known what hit him.

Yasko was covered with blood, probably more the Commander's than her own and was unconscious. Tony vaguely remembered the medical personnel beginning to arrive and the sound of a sorrowful scream piercing the air. Somebody yelled for Bob Mathias and Tony realized that it was Helena who was screaming.

Patrick helped him pull Maya from the debris and Tony's first action was to wipe the dirt from her face. She too was bathed in blood, very dark in contrast to her uniform and there was no way of telling how much of it was hers. Tony was filled with relief when she opened up her pretty blue eyes and smiled at him.

"My love." She whispered, her voice straining to produce any sound at all.

Tony felt a horrendous cold chill go through his body and he gripped her left hand, squeezing it tightly.

"It'll be OK darling." He told her tenderly. "You'll see." He looked up desperately to Ed Spencer and Ben Vincent. "You'll save her, won't you?" he begged the doctors, then turned his attention back to his wife.

"Honest, princess," Tony told her. "You just need to hang on a little while longer." Tony's voice quivered with emotion, he had never been so frightened in his whole life.

Maya smiled weakly at him. "Yeah, right." She moaned, trying to force a smile. Then her blue eyes slowly closed as she gave just the tiniest of quivers in Tony's arms. Then she was still.

Tony would never clearly remember what happened after that. He heard screaming, perhaps his own mixed with others. Strong hands tried to pull him away from Maya but he wouldn't leave her. Later Pat Osgood would tell him that he nearly pummeled Ed when the doctor had found no pulse and shook his head sadly at Vincent. Tony remembered nothing of that.

They told him that he carried Maya all the way back to Medical and that for a long time he just stood over her, refusing to let anyone come near him or her. Bob had tried to talk to him and Tony had turned around with a look of anger like nobody had ever witnessed before.

Finally, hours later, Sandra and Alan managed to get him to leave Medical Center with them. Sandra would tell him later that he pleaded for a blanket for Maya, that she mustn't be allowed to get cold. One of the nurses had brought one in immediately, wiping large tears from her face.

Alan and Sandra had led him back to his quarters and they tried to get him to eat but he refused. They stayed with him for awhile, and then there was the call from Medical that Yasko had died too. Sandra and Alan had left Tony alone for a bit, but they later came back accompanied by Bill and Annie. They were afraid to let their friend alone while not wanting to be alone themselves.

A memorial service was held the following afternoon and Alan said that Tony had attended with them. He had no memory of doing so just as he didn't remember sitting next to Helena, his arms around the grieving doctor.

After the service he had closed himself in his quarters for three days, refusing to come out for anyone or anything. He had sat there on his bed, what had been their bed. He looked at the recent wedding pictures and at older pictures. There were some taken of Maya when she had first come to Alpha. They had been nothing more than friends at that time but it was apparent even then that they were close by the positioning of their bodies. He could easily observe the transformation of the shy and frightened young girl into the beautiful and confident science officer who had finally found a place on the base and who had become more than his friend, she had become his lover.

There were pictures of the Commander, sometimes smiling as the stress of commanding the base lifted, if even just for a short time. Some were just silly snapshots of them all having a good time. Somebody's birthday party where Maya was sitting on his lap and obviously giggling. He longed for the sound of her laughter.

There was a beautiful picture of Helena and John looking intently into each other's eyes, a serene look of contentment on Russell's face. There were silly pictures of them all clowning around, even the Commander in a few. These were all that were left now, images of the boss who had become one of his closest friends and the lovely woman who had meant the universe to him. Tears flowed down his face as he grieved.

Later he would get up and go to their closet, running his shaking hands down Maya's Psychon dress, her uniforms, and her jacket. For three days he didn't eat or sleep that he could remember. Finally he collapsed on the bed, sobs racking his body until sleep took over. He slept the remainder of that afternoon away and continued to sleep, tormented by nightmares, until around 3:30 in the morning. Instantly he was wide-awake and aware that there was a cool breeze blowing in his room. The smell of the seashore mixed with the smell of a meadow and he was confused.

He struggled to sit up and rubbed his hand across his face, surprised as the sharp stubble scraped his skin. Then he became aware of a pulsating light in the center of the darkened room and it came towards him. He reached for his stun gun but it wasn't on him or anywhere to be found. Later he would find out that Carter had discreetly removed all weapons from his quarters.

He jumped from the bed and tried to back away as the light approached him but he was pressed up against the wall. Then the pulsating stopped and began to form images that resembled Koenig and Maya. He blinked in shock. She was dressed in a soft blue flowing gown and her hair was hanging down loose and curly. The Commander was dressed all in white, a shirt and pant combination that made him look much younger, less stressed and very handsome.

She held out her hand to him and Tony timidly reached out. Her skin was cool to the touch and she smiled. Gently she led him back to the bed, making him sit down.

"Please Tony, you mustn't do this to yourself." She said with a quiet authority. The Commander nodded in agreement.

"They need you Tony."

"Nobody needs me!" Verdeschi yelled, confusion and anger rising in him.

"Darling, please." Maya begged. "Alpha needs somebody strong."

"I'm not strong," he said. "And I don't need Alpha, I don't need anybody but you. And I don't have you anymore, do I!"

"Tony, please, Helena needs you. She's my friend; she took care of me when there wasn't anybody left to take care of me," the Psychon said. "Please do the same for her now?" She pleaded.

"Tony, I know it's a lot to ask of you but I need to know that's she's going to be OK," the Commander said.

Tony looked at the dead people standing in front of him and thought he must be hallucinating.

"You're not real, this is a dream." He said aloud. "Dead people can't tell me what they want." Then he yelled angrily. "And nobody cares what I want."

Maya wrapped her arms around him, rocking him gently. Tony would have sworn she felt as real as the bed he was on. He could feel her, see her, hear her; he could even smell her perfume, an exotic scent that she had worn only on special occasions and one that never failed to arouse him.

He pulled her close and began to weep. "I don't want to live without you babe. You mean everything to me. I'd rather die than be without you."

She smiled a gentle smile and kissed him softly. "It's all right Tony, honest. I know Alpha will be all right and so will you. You've always been strong; you've always been a fighter."

She kissed him tenderly again and placed her hands on his cheeks, looking right into his eyes before she continued, "Please, look after Helena, she's been like a sister to me. She misses John so much and she needs your strength to get through. They all do."

John nodded. "You can Tony, I have faith in you. I always knew what you were capable of handling, even if you didn't. Please, Alpha needs a strong commander now. You're their only hope, show them that you still have faith." John was wearing a charming smile that Tony knew nobody could ignore or deny.

Oddly Tony found himself nodding. "I suppose you're right sir." He said.

Maya went to stand up and he grabbed at her arm. "Must you go?" he pleaded.

She gave him a serene smile. "Yes my love." She let her left hand softly caress his scruffy cheek and she chuckled. "I like this look." She said with a grin. "It suits you."

Tony actually gave a small laugh, the first in days. "I love you. I always did. I always will."

"I've known that since the first day I met you. And I'll love you for all eternity." She said quietly. "I must go now."

Tony shook his head. "No Alpha needs you, we need you both. Please! Stay. I need you!" He cried.

Maya had returned to the Commander's side and he placed an arm around her shoulder. "She's fine Tony. Nothing will ever harm her again." The Commander's voice was filled with assurance and somehow it brought a strange feeling of comfort with it to the Italian.

"Sir?" Tony said questioningly. "What do I do without you both?"

"You'll be fine, Commander Verdeschi." John said with a grin. "Now I have a card game with Professor Bergman to return to."

Tony's face contorted in confusion but he had no chance to reply as Maya said, "Neither of you have a chance to win. I don't see why you can't accept that." Her voice was filled with a smug sound that matched the impish look on her face.

"Goodbye my darling Tony." She said. Her image began to blur, as did the Commander's.

"Maya? John?" Tony tried to leap off the bed but something seemed to hold him back. The light began to pulsate and then vanish fading as thought it had never been there. Tony would never be sure if he had blacked out, had never been awake in the first place, or exactly what but the next thing he knew it was morning and he was under his covers.

"Had to have been a dream." He mumbled to himself. He glanced at the clock, almost 6:30. He had time for a shower and breakfast before duty. As he climbed off the bed he inhaled. Odd but it smelled like Maya's perfume mixed with another unfamiliar scent. He looked but her bottle was still on the dresser, untouched since their wedding day.

After his shower he wrapped a towel around his waist. He took a glance in the mirror and shook his head as he viewed the scruffy look and dark circles under his eyes. He ran the comb through his dark hair and was thinking about shaving when an odd thought crossed his mind. Maya would have like a mustache he thought. He realized that it would be a while until it looked respectable but he could live with it. As he got dressed he realized he was hungry, then he thought that he couldn't remember when he had eaten last.

Once dressed he went to Helena's quarters and rang her bell. She opened it and gave him a tiny smile when she saw him. He returned the smile. "I wanted to see how you were doing." He told her.

She gave him a slight nod then turned to go back in. She picked up a bottle that was on the coffee table and pulled it close to her chest. "His cologne. I wanted to smell it, to remember." She said, trying to hide the tears that were threatening to spill from her green eyes.

Tony caught a whiff of it and stopped her, taking the bottle from her hands. "I smelled that, last night."

Helena gave him a curious look. "What?" she asked.

Tony shook his head. "You wouldn't believe me if I told you." He murmured quietly.

"Try me." She whispered.

Tony gave her an odd look and her gaze met his. "Why don't we discuss this over breakfast? I'm starved."

"I suppose I could eat a little something." She replied.

Tony followed her out the door and put his arm around her shoulder, giving her slim body a hug. He suddenly knew what he had to do, that he had new responsibilities in his life. Helena had always been there for him and for Maya and now it was his turn to be there for her. It might not be much but it was what he could offer, perhaps their friendship could pull them through this as they began the long process of healing and moving forward with their lives.

He knew it would be damned difficult, probably the hardest thing either of them would ever do. But they would do it together and somehow they and Alpha would keep going on. Moonbase Alpha and all the Alphans would survive if he had anything to say in the matter. He had promised and Tony knew that he could never deny Maya anything, even now.

Copyright (c) 1999. Reprinted with permission.
Space:1999 is (c) 1976 by Carlton International Media.
All stories are the property of their respective authors.

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