Commander Tom Paris

Name: Thomas "Tom" Paris
Rank: Commander
Position: First Officer USS Voyager

Starfleet History
????: Assigned to USS Exeter
????: Discharged from Starfleet
2371: Assigned to USS Voyager as observer
2371: Given rank Lieutenant junior grade and named Chief Helm Officer
2375: Demoted to Ensign
2377: Promoted to Lieutenant junior grade
2378: Promoted to Lieutenant Commander
2379: Promoted to Commander

Personal History
Thomas Eugene Paris was the son of a Starfleet Admiral, Owen Paris. Growing up, Paris often felt inadequate due to the pressure his father put on him to excel and feeling like a failure as a result. The alienation continued throughout his adulthood to the point where Tom would just ignore his father altogether, "tuning out" to what he referred to as yet another "sermon". Throughout Tom's life and career at Starfleet, his father remained tough and remote, telling him for instance that crying was a sign of weakness. Crying, incidentally, was the one thing Tom recalled doing the most as a teenager. As a result, Paris and his father had a rather troubled relationship and at some point Tom just wanted him out of his life. Despite this, Paris loved his bedroom back home as he often locked himself away in there, not only to cry, but also to play games and listen to music. After it landed on his window sill next to his bed, young Paris also fed a baby bird water with an eyedropper to keep it alive. Moreover, he lost his virginity in his bedroom at the age of seventeen while his parents were away for the weekend. Paris had a desire for adventure while growing up, feeling he had to climb the largest tree and scale the tallest cliff. As a buff of early Human missions into space, he also memorized the recording from the Friendship 1 probe and built a model of it as a young boy. While he considered most of his early family to be rather ordinary people, referring to them as "salt of the earth" type of people with some "farmers" and "colonists", he held great respect for one of his ancestors, a pilot who flew the first orbital glider over the lower Martian plateau. Tom himself had a passion for piloting, too, which he really discovered at the age of eight, when his father took him for a trip in an S class shuttlecraft. He also used to take Tom up in an "old class 1 shuttle". When he was 16 years old, Tom took his father's shuttle out for a joyride, ending up frying all the relays and landing it at the bottom of Lake Tahoe where it would be sitting for years to come. Despite this, Tom's first love was the sea. He was obsessed with stories about the ocean, e.g., Captains Courageous as well as Moby Dick, and once said that he had read Jules Verne's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea "at least twenty thousand times". Due to this love, Tom had planned to join the Federation Naval Patrol after high school. However, his father had other plans for him and did not understand his son's passion. As far as he was concerned, the only ship Tom ever was going to serve on had to have a Starfleet insignia on it. Eventually, Tom applied to Starfleet Academy. During his first year at the Academy, Paris fell in love for the first time with a girl named Susie Crabtree. When she broke off the relationship he recalls breaking out in hives, unable to get out of bed for a week, and almost failing Stellar Cartography. He spent much of that year in a daze and even years later he thought of her from time to time, never really being able to completely forget her. During his second semester at the Academy in the 2360s, he chose Marseille, France as the site of his physical training. There, he frequented a small bar known as Sandrine's where he once met a girl by the name of Ricky. Advanced Subspace Geometry was the only class at the Academy in which he actually paid attention. He did hone his natural aptitude for piloting skills on craft large and small and proved adept at holo-engineering. He once told Neelix that his father was the instructor of his course on Survival Strategies and that he gave Tom a mere "B-minus." Paris managed to graduate from Starfleet Academy after a stormy four years with a major in astrophysics.

Upon graduating from the Academy, Paris was assigned to the USS Exeter. His career in Starfleet was short-lived, however, and ended after he was involved in covering up his own piloting error which had led to the death of three fellow officers at Caldik Prime. Despite later telling the truth, he was discharged from Starfleet following the incident. He once remarked that "the ghosts of those three dead officers came to me in the middle of the night and taught me the true meaning of Christmas" when asked why he finally confessed. After being expelled from Starfleet, he wandered around "looking for a fight" and found it in the Maquis. He was with them for a few weeks before he was captured on his first mission, convicted of treason, and sentenced to eighteen months' imprisonment at the Federation Penal Settlement in New Zealand. While he was serving time at the Federation penal colony for his involvement with the Maquis, he received a visit from Captain Kathryn Janeway who gave him the opportunity to redeem himself by participating in a mission to track down the Maquis ship Val Jean that had disappeared in the Badlands with her undercover security officer Tuvok. After some initial hesitation, Paris decided to take this opportunity and join Captain Janeway on Voyager. He was very cynical when asked to join, couldn't care less about the crew of that ship, and only agreed to be brought on board as a Starfleet observer after being assured that when it was over, he would be cut loose and Janeway would give him a favorable report at his next review.

When Captain Janeway first recruited Tom to retrieve a Maquis ship that had disappeared in the Badlands, he agreed to help but only if there was something in it for him. He did not care much about the crew of that ship and smugly confirmed Chakotay's assertion of him as a mercenary willing to fight for anyone who pays his bar bills. When Paris first set foot on board Voyager, he was seen as brash and arrogant, an aimless wanderer who seemed a little too cocky and a little too sure of himself. His haunted past resulted in him receiving a rather cool reception from pretty much everyone on board including the ship's First Officer Cavit, as well as the ship's doctor, who openly expressed their dislike of him. Chakotay, who was also trapped in the Delta Quadrant with the Voyager crew, was not happy to see him either and upon their first encounter on the bridge, angrily accused Tom of having sold them out for a meager reward. Despite rather shaky beginnings and a crew that wondered whether he could be trusted when things got tough, Paris was nonetheless able to gradually redeem himself in the eyes of many. On Ocampa, he saved Chakotay's life, resulting in Chakotay greatly changing his sentiments toward Paris and beginning to respect him. In addition to saving Chakotay's life, he also helped rescue B'Elanna Torres and Harry Kim who had been sent to an underground Ocampa city, and he struck a meaningful friendship with shy Harry Kim, who had just graduated from the Academy and was on his first deep space assignment. During the battle between Voyager and a Kazon-Ogla starship, Janeway posted Paris to the conn. After the Caretaker's array was destroyed, Paris was officially designated as flight controller, with his Starfleet rank of lieutenant junior grade reinstated. He was assigned the additional job of medic for The Doctor when an assessment for medical replacements was brought forth, as Paris had taken two semesters of biochemistry at the Academy. His reputation continued to haunt him, however, and finally caught up with him while on a mission to Banea to repair a damaged collimator. On Banea, Paris was convicted of murdering Tolen Ren – an elderly scientist whose young, beautiful wife he fancied. It was believed that Tom had killed Ren when he was caught flirting with his wife Lidell. As punishment, the images of Ren's last moments up to his death were imprinted in Paris' brain, and he was forced to relive his alleged victim's last moments over and over again; a punishment that was slowly resulting in permanent brain damage. Believing him to be innocent, Tuvok began an investigation and was eventually able to discover proof that Paris had been framed for the murder even though he had gotten closer to Ren's wife. To bring back a piece of home into the Delta Quadrant, Paris also created a holoprogram called Sandrine's based on a bar in Marseille, France. He introduced Harry Kim to several late night sessions on the holodeck running the simulation. Sandrine's quickly became a favorite spot of the crew to relax and they even gave a surprise birthday party for Kes there. The program included Sandrine, Ricky, a pool hustler, and a gigolo. Later that year, Paris, along with B'Elanna Torres, was captured by the Vidiians. While Torres was subjected to an experiment that parted her Human and Klingon halves, Paris, after working at hard labor, was going to have his organs harvested. Finally, Chakotay and a rescue squad were able to save them.

When in 2371 Voyager discovered an ancient Earth automobile, a 1936 Ford truck floating in space, Tom was the first one to take an interest and share with the rest of the crew his knowledge about cars of the 20th century. When Harry Kim asked if the Ford they had found was one of the first hover cars, he replied that this car was just one step above the horse-drawn carriage. The second year was an eventful one for Tom Paris as he began establishing himself with the Voyager crew and finding his place. Even though that would change later, at the beginning of their journey, Tom and Neelix did not get along, mainly due to Neelix's mistrust of Paris and his reputation as a bad boy that had preceded him. Paris had become attracted to and flirted with Kes over the course of the year, which left Neelix rather uneasy and nervous every time Paris was around her. Paris once saved up two weeks worth of replicator rations to buy Kes a necklace for her birthday; a gesture that left Neelix fuming with jealousy. He also occasionally helped out Kes in the airponics bay and spent time with her, all of which prompted Neelix to give Paris the cold shoulder and regularly suspect Kes, questioning her motives and loyalty. Tensions built up and eventually resulted in Paris and Neelix coming face to face with one another with Neelix dumping a plate of hair pasta on Paris and accusing him of sneaking around behind his back with Kes. Paris did not take kindly to the insults and before they knew it, they were engaged in a physical fight. They were able to resolve their differences when both were assigned together on an away mission and had to depend on each other for survival. Paris admitted to having had feelings for Kes but also told Neelix that he respected him too much to ever act on those feelings. Neelix apologized for his jealous and inappropriate behavior and the two men shook hands. The bonding experience between Neelix and Tom marked the end of Neelix's jealousy of Paris over Kes and the beginning of their friendship. Paris was also the first Starfleet officer to reach warp 10 and thus the transwarp threshold safely. However, despite success in the simulations without ill effect, the real flight experience caused him to begin to mutate into an amphibian lifeform that could no longer process oxygen. While in sickbay and in his delirious state, he revealed to The Doctor that what he remembered the most about being a kid were the times he spent in his room crying; the same room in which he also lost his virginity at seventeen. When his mutation was reaching near completion, he kidnapped Janeway and took her on a warp ten journey, which resulted in her mutating as well. When they were found, they had completely devolved into amphibians and produced three offspring which the crew left on the planet to which they had escaped. Back on Voyager, The Doctor was able to return them back to their Human forms. That same year, Paris became instrumental in Voyager's repeated struggles and challenges with the Kazon who were determined to acquire Federation technology at all costs. It began when he was involved in a plot, backed by Captain Janeway and Tuvok, but unknown to Chakotay and everyone else, to act disruptively and exhibit bad behavior and tardiness. He showed up late to his duty shifts and even once pushed Chakotay to the ground when he had asked him to change his attitude. The charade went on for a while in order to make his pretending to leave Voyager to expose a traitor among the crew, more believable. Not knowing of Tom's plan, Neelix truly believed that Tom was leaving and thus, on his show "A Briefing with Neelix", delivered a rather moving speech praising Tom Paris as a gravely misunderstood man whose bravery, courage, and friendliness were overseen by misleading first impressions and the judgment of others. Tom did end up returning to the ship after his mission was over, much to Neelix's delight who thought he had lost a friend and Chakotay's dismay, who felt fooled and deceived once again. When the ship was seized by Culluh and Seska, Paris was able to leave just in time in a shuttle to bring help. While the crew was forced to leave the ship and marooned on a desolate planet, The Doctor and Lon Suder managed to remain on board. They sabotaged Voyager, which was now under Culluh's and Seska's control, allowing Paris to retake the ship. Paris, who led a fleet of Talaxian ships, took out the primary phaser couplings and their backups causing an energy overload. The explosion of the phaser couplings resulted in Seska getting killed while she was sitting at the conn at the time Paris initiated the overload. After retaking the ship, Paris rescued the rest of the crew from the planet and they resumed their journey. While Tom was proving himself as a valuable member of the crew, he also began establishing close personal relationships with crew members, such as The Doctor whom he gave relationship advice when he had developed feelings for one of his patients, a Vidiian named Danara Pel, and felt rather stuck with the unfamiliar emotions he was experiencing. Tom, who – despite being a womanizer – had gone through his share of rejections and heartbreaks, told The Doctor that the first one was always the hardest to get over, although eventually the feelings would subside, even if they never completely disappeared. Even though the prospects of eternal heartbreak left The Doctor rather hopeless, Tom nonetheless advised him to give it another try with Denara and take her some place special to confess his feelings for her. Among all of his relationships with the crew, Tom had developed a specially close friendship with young Harry Kim. Their friendship was put to the test when they were accused of terrorist activities they did not commit and held in an Akritirian maximum security detention facility more than three hundred meters underground. There, they were controlled by a neural implant called a clamp, which induced paranoia and violence. Even though Captain Janeway was able to prove their innocence, the authorities refused to release them. The two men suffered horribly in the prison and the stress of prison and the neural implants did take its toll on both of them: when Paris once, suffering from delirium, dismantled a tool Kim was going to use for an escape attempt, Kim, enraged at what Paris had done, lost control and almost killed him. Kim was able to stop himself in the last minute but realized that he had gone too far. The two men fought for each other, however, and Kim nursed Paris back to health after he was stabbed by another inmate. T his incident marked an important step in Tom's and Harry's friendship, as Tom realized the kind of friend he had found in Harry who not only saved his life, but also stood by him at his worst.

During the third year of their journey through the Delta Quadrant, Tom traveled back in time, to 20th century Los Angeles on Earth – along with Tuvok, Chakotay, and Janeway – to stop Henry Starling from stealing a time ship. Tuvok and Paris were sent to find Rain Robinson, a young astronomer in Starling's employ who detected Voyager's arrival, find out whatever information she had gathered and destroy it. Spending a great deal of time together and sharing similar interests, Tom and Rain developed feelings for each other, but were forced to part ways when Voyager's mission was over and Tom had to return to the 24th century. That same year also marked the first time Tom's and B'Elanna's romantic interest and attraction for one another became apparent. When Torres began experiencing symptoms similar to the pon farr, after being attacked by Ensign Vorik who was also undergoing the blood fever, she quite aggressively pursued Paris and displayed feelings of passion toward him to the point of wanting to mate with him. But Paris refused to initiate anything with her while her judgment was impaired and she found herself in a delirious state. This angered Torres, who had sensed all along how much Tom wanted her – pointing out his advances, the longing looks and his jealousy every time she was with someone else. Even though it was difficult, Paris continued to resist her. After she overcame her blood fever, Torres returned to her reserved self again. Paris admitted that even though she was scared to show her Klingon side, he did like it and hoped to see more of it in the future. Later that year, Paris received permission to write an ending to the highly sought after holoprogram Insurrection Alpha; much to the original author Tuvok's dismay, who feared that Tom's casual attitude would strongly compromise the logical organization with which the novel was crafted. While arguing over their different approaches on how to write the novel, they went to the holodeck where they became trapped and almost killed during the Insurrection Alpha program that had been sabotaged by Seska during her time on Voyager. Its safety protocols were off-line and the program about a Maquis takeover of the ship was in progress, with a holographic version of Seska programmed to target anyone who opened the narrative parameters file. Despite the odds, Tuvok and Paris were able to stay one step ahead of Seska's programming until Janeway could write an ending to the novel, culminating in the Seska hologram being "killed" when a phaser rifle malfunctioned.

The year 2374 was a rather eventful one for Tom Paris, mainly because he and B'Elanna Torres grew closer, finally began admitting their feelings for each other and decided to take their relationship to the next level. They had a rather rocky start, especially because Torres kept pushing him away with her defensive and caustic attitude. On the Klingon Day of Honor, she behaved particularly intolerable towards Paris, who was trying to encourage her to embrace her Klingon side instead of running from it. When she demanded that he leave her alone and angrily snapped, Tom told her point blank that if she kept pushing away those who cared about her, she would end up alone. This struck a chord with Torres, who had been angry for such a long time. They finally admitted their feelings for each other when they were near death, floating in space in their EV suits after an away mission gone wrong. Right before Voyager found them and much to Paris' surprise, B'Elanna even admitted that she was in love with Tom. They kept their relationship under covers for a while, unsure as to how serious the other was about it and how to go about revealing it to their crew mates. As a result of the secrecy they were trying to maintain and which made them sneak around a few times, they were occasionally caught in rather compromising situations such as when Tuvok walked in on them in engineering. On one occasion, they even had to be set straight by Captain Janeway who demanded they exercise better judgment if they wanted to pursue a relationship. During the year of confrontation with the Krenim timeship, Paris was captured and taken aboard the Krenim ship with Chakotay. He tried to sabotage the ship in order to restore the timeline, objecting to Chakotay's plan to convince the Krenim to stop on the grounds that the Krenim commander had gone mad. He secretly transmitted the location of the Krenmin ship to Janeway who was able to crash Voyager into the ship, destabilizing its temporal core and causing it to erase itself, restoring the timeline. Even though Paris had managed to build a new life for himself on Voyager and leave behind his troubled past, it still haunted him occasionally. When Voyager received a message from Starfleet containing personal letters from the crews' family and friends, Tom once again was haunted by that life in the Alpha Quadrant that he was desperately trying to escape. While everyone was thrilled about the letters from home, Paris masked his pain behind jokes and cynical remarks, stating to Harry Kim that he should not keep his hopes up because no hopes meant no disappointments. When he eventually did end up receiving a letter from his father, he was less than enthused. He confided to B'Elanna that the more everybody was excited about the letters from home, the more he wanted no part of it, emphasizing that what he had on Voyager was better than anything he ever had back home. In the end he reluctantly admitted that maybe he really still cared what his father thought about him. Even though the letter he received was lost in the data stream, he decided to believe that it maybe contained the kind of reassurance he has always sought from his father. In the same year, his memory, along with that of the entire Voyager crew, was removed by the Hirogen and he was placed in a simulation where he played the role of an American army officer during World War II in France. In that simulation, which the Hirogen used to hunt for "prey", he and Torres' character had a romantic relationship before the war. Later that year, Paris began feeling a bit restless and somewhat trapped in his routine. He exhibited erratic behavior and was easily irritated. He spent hours on the holodeck working on antique cars and neglected his duties quite extensively. He and Torres also argued more than usual, with Tom accusing her of being on his case too much and always overreacting. When Paris met an alien named Steth whose adventurous and unbound lifestyle appeared rather attractive to him and reminded him of his own carefree past, he was yanked out of his inertia. Chakotay even granted him permission to work on the alien's ship. In the process of helping Steth, they became friends and Steth even offered Tom to come along with him, having noticed his feelings of being trapped in a dreary settled life. When Tom reluctantly declined, Steth, a shapeshifter with the ability to steal the DNA of any humanoid form, switched places with Tom and posed as the real one on board Voyager, behaving stranger than ever, threatening crew members and even attempting to strangle Captain Janeway who had confronted him about his atypical behavior. Tom was able to regain his DNA with the help of the real Steth, who also had its DNA stolen. While exploring a toxic, Demon-class planet, Paris and Kim came into contact with a silver liquid on the planet and were bioformed. The planet's metallic fluid, the Silver Blood, created duplicates of Paris and Kim because it sought consciousness and sentience. That silver blood finally released Voyager after the crew agreed to be duplicated to populate the planet.

In 2375 Paris had to heavily lobby for and finally built the Delta Flyer, a shuttle of his own design intended for use in the increasingly-hostile Delta Quadrant. Captain Janeway authorized construction in order to retrieve a multispatial probe that was lost in the atmosphere of a gas giant and in danger of being stolen by the Malon. The Malon also began working on a shuttlecraft, and finished theirs before the Flyer was complete. When they sent out their shuttle, the Flyer was deployed early, despite a flaw with the vessel's structural integrity. The Flyer was successful in retrieving the probe, but a hull breach started to occur. B'Elanna Torres designed a makeshift device that deployed a temporary force field, successfully containing the breach. He explained that he found a 0.42 phase variance, a major design flaw, in Voyager's new quantum slipstream drive's system while running tests at a console. His opinion was that it was an Edsel. This warning was instrumental in staving off a catastrophe. One of the first serious setbacks for him ever since he joined Voyager was the time he was demoted to the rank of ensign and sentenced to thirty days of solitary confinement in the brig. He had disobeyed orders of not interfering with a society that was threatened with the loss of their ocean and Captain Janeway – who was very disappointed in him after everything he had accomplished since he came on board – disciplined him heavily. While in the brig, he began to dictate a letter to his father and took great pains to describe the circumstances that led him to the brig, so that this time his father would know that unlike the last, his incarceration was not for disgraceful reasons, but for noble ones. In the same year, as he was enjoying a chapter of one of his favorite holodeck programs The Adventures of Captain Proton, photonic lifeforms on an exploratory mission from the fifth dimension became entangled in a war with the characters from that program, mistaking Voyager's holodeck and the program it was running for reality. Paris, with the help of the crew, was eventually able to convince the photonic aliens to leave the ship, but this also meant the end of his Captain Proton program. Later that year, he became trapped on a planet with Tuvok and The Doctor, and was taught survival techniques by Noss, an alien female who had fallen in love with Tuvok. Paris advised Tuvok to let Noss in and try a relationship with her, since it was unlikely he would ever see his wife again. Tuvok had no intention of doing that and Paris later apologized for his bluntness but asked that Tuvok at least let her down easy, if he could not return her love. When the crew was being deceived by false telemetry emitted by what looked like a wormhole to the Alpha Quadrant, Tom believed to have received a letter from an old friend who had offered him a spot at the new test flight center in Australia with a chance to pilot the newest experimental ships. The "wormhole" turned out to be a creature luring everyone into its bowels by promising them to turn into reality what they desired the most.

When in 2376 Voyager encountered another Federation starship, the USS Equinox, stranded in the Delta Quadrant, Torres ran into an old boyfriend, Maxwell Burke – an encounter which left Tom nervous and evoked certain feelings of jealousy in him, prompting him to ask questions and inquire about the nature and depth of their relationship. Later that year, Voyager encountered an interstellar junkyard and Tom, while surveying the debris, set his eyes on a small shuttle. He was instantly drawn to it, stating that the ship was a work of art that he had just fallen in love with and had to have. He advocated hard to acquire it, promising to restore it himself and on his own time. He spent hours working on it, even naming it after an old crush from the Academy who never gave him the time of day: Alice. He obsessed for hours about Alice, mainly to the detriment of his duties and personal relationships. The more time he spent working on the ship, the more detached he became from everything and everyone else around him. Noticing Tom's obsessive and erratic behavior, the crew investigated and it turned out that Alice was a ship unlike any other, equipped with a neurogenic interface that allowed it to react directly to the pilot's thoughts. The interface made Tom see a woman, the personification of the ship, who had an obsession of her own with Tom and asked him to escape with her to a particle fountain she referred to as "home". Tom was finally rescued from Alice who had neurologically manipulated him to become one with the machine. In the same year, while returning from an away mission, he began to have dreams that he had participated in a massacre. These were memories produced by a synaptic transmitter on a planet they had landed on and it was put there to keep alive the memory of the people who had been massacred. He also accompanied Chakotay and Seven of Nine in the investigation of a gravimetric distortion where Voyager had discovered the Ares IV, an old Earth ship sent to Mars in the early 21st century. The Ares had become trapped inside the distortion in 2032 and no one ever found out what had happened to its pilot Lieutenant John Kelly. Finding a piece of Earth history out there in the Delta Quadrant meant a lot to the crew, so an away team was sent out to retrieve the ship's command module before the distortion disappeared again in subspace. In their attempts they, too, were trapped inside it, but managed to escape by using parts from the old ship to fix the Delta Flyer. As a Mars buff, this was a special assignment for Tom who, similar to Chakotay, saw the Mars missions as an important step in Humanity's path to space exploration. Later that year, during an away mission on a small planetoid in the Wyanti system searching for a spore The Doctor wanted to grow anti-viral proteins with, Tom and Neelix ran into Dala, an alien of unknown origin, and her duo of con artist friends, impersonating monks. Under false pretenses, the trio downloaded Voyager's database from the Delta Flyer, and began posing as Janeway, Tuvok and Chakotay to con people out of money and resources. After Paris and Neelix found out that they had been had by the so-called monks, they were rather embarrassed, commiserating about maybe having lost their edge.

During the last year of Voyager's journey, he was reinstated to the rank of lieutenant junior grade prior to helping the Borg drones of Unimatrix Zero escape from the Collective. Seven suggested that Paris could help Icheb study astrometrics for the Starfleet Academy entrance exam, when she believed she would no longer be around. Paris married B'Elanna Torres during the first running of the Antarian Trans-stellar Rally, proposing as the shuttle came close to suffering a warp core breach. Its destruction was averted after the warp core was ejected into a class J nebula, containing the antimatter explosion. The two of them used the Delta Flyer for their honeymoon. One of Paris' more important personal struggles that year was when he helped Torres accept her Klingon heritage and allow their baby to be born with Klingon characteristics. Ever since her father left following an argument, B'Elanna had been convinced that she was responsible for him leaving due to her and her mother being too Klingon for him to cope with; she feared it would happen again. Paris convinced her that he would love all their children no matter how Klingon they were, and she agreed to not have her daughter genetically altered to only look Human. Trained by Kohlar to use the bat'leth, Tom also fought for her honor when a group of Klingons believed she was carrying the savior of the Klingon race. Paris and most of the crew of Voyager were kidnapped by a race called the Quarren. They were brainwashed and drugged so they could be used in the labor force of the planet. Having no memory of himself, Paris in this life was looking for another job after being fired from the local power plant by a new efficiency monitor, named Annika Hansen. Paris got himself hired in a local tavern to wait and bus tables, where he met a single and highly pregnant B'Elanna Torres and fell for her. He and the rest of the crew were eventually rescued through the efforts of Chakotay. While piloting the Delta Flyer through Ledosian space, Paris was charged with reckless piloting, and was required to attend a piloting class. He failed the course when he rescued an away team from the planet and disabled a deflector shield. While on the ship's first Starfleet-assigned mission in seven years, he was captured by a race that had been contaminated by an old Earth probe. He was rescued – and, indeed helped make peace with the population by having an infant suffering from radiation sickness receive treatment – but his crewmate, Joe Carey, was killed. During the last battle with the Borg, which enabled Voyager to return home, his first child was born, a girl named Miral. Although he was unable to be present at her birth, as he was needed at Voyager's helm while the ship was trying to get back home, he was contacted by The Doctor who told him that "There's someone down here who would like to say 'Hello'.

Upon Voyager's return to the Alpha Quadrant, Tom was promoted two steps in rank to Lieutenant Commander, previously having been a Lieutenant, junior grade (promotable to Lieutenant) while serving on Voyager (with a short demotion to an Ensign in 2375 for disobeying orders). Tom journeyed with B'Elanna to the Klingon sanctuary of Boreth in order to help B'Elanna with a quest to find her mother, who had been lost in the wilds of Boreth's jungles. Soon after, he rejoined the crew of Voyager, which was now under the command of Captain Chakotay. Tom was Chakotay's first choice for Voyager's First officer, but Starfleet overruled him, assigning Commander Andrew Ellis to the post instead. When Ellis was revealed to actually be a renegade Changeling, Tom moved up into the First officer position. After Chakotay's death in late 2379 Voyager's new Captain Thelin promoted Tom to full Commander feeling that was a more appropriate rank for his First Officer. Despite this the two clash often regarding the "culture on Voyager."

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