The Heart of a Man

Title: The Heart of a Man
Author: Jazz Man
Series: TOS
Codes: K, Sc, S/Mc
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Paramount owns anything remotely related to Trek - I'm not
claiming ought but this story.
Summary: Scotty's shuttle goes missing and the crew of the Enterprise
have to find him.

Belated, like almost a year, thanks to Lisa Marie Clark, Tim Harrison, J
Winter and Effie Andree Wiltens for DeSalle and the Copernicus.  Sorry
for taking such a long to chow my appreciation.

The Heart of a Man
  Jazz Man

        He was gone - Jim Kirk knew it.  Even the ship felt different as
if somehow she knew he was gone.
        As he turned the corner Kirk saw Spock walking towards him.  He
immediately turned back almost running to get away from the Vulcan.
Even so Spock was too fast for him.
        "Captain . . . Jim, I understand that this has been a great loss
to you, but you must accept that Mr Scott is dead."
        "He's not dead, he's just gone and I, we, will keep looking
until we find him."
        "We have new orders, sir"      
        "Damn them, damn them to hell.  I'm going after Scotty, even
without your help."
        Spock nodded, he had expected as much, "I have plotted the
shuttle's last know position into the computer.  The Copernicus' flight
plan is also logged.  If he is alive, we will find him."
        "He's alive, Spock, he has to be alive."

        Two days later and the Enterprise was no closer to finding its
Chief Engineer.  Scotty's second, Lieutenant DeSalle, was having
difficulties coping with the strain.  Kirk was restless and his
nervousness was effecting the crew.  Enough was enough.
        "Captain," said Spock moving from the science station, "I would
suggest you return to your quarters and attempt to get some rest."
        Kirk looked at him, but before he had the chance to respond
McCoy spoke, "He's right, Jim. You're doing no one any good up here,
least of all Scotty."
        Kirk sighed, "Gentlemen, I will go on one condition.  If
anything is discovered I am to be contacted."
        "Of course," said McCoy.  Spock merely nodded.
        Kirk stood, "You have the bridge, Mr Spock," he said and left.
        McCoy slumped against the command chair, "Well, that wasn't too

        He was falling. Arms flailing trying to find a hold on the
walls.  He couldn't do it, couldn't keep hold.  The walls were too
smooth; his hands couldn't find purchase.  But then there was another
set of hands pulling him up.  He grabbed on to the hands and let himself
be pulled to safety. He found himself in some sort of a cave.  His
saviour held him close, gently stroking his sweat soaked hair. It
didn't take long for him to realise who it was. 
        "Scotty?" he asked hoarsely.
        "Aye, lad?"
        He closed his eyes leaning into the other man's embrace, "I
thought you were gone."
        "I'm still here," he paused. "But not for long," he said,
grinning as the flesh of his face fell away.
        He screamed backing away from the thing in front of him.  He
backed over the edge and was falling again.

        The console beeped.  It was an innocuous noise but from the
bridge crew it meant only one thing - they had found wreckage.
        "Beam the wreckage to cargo bay 4," said Spock crossing to the
turbolift.  He turned to Sulu, "You have the bridge, Lieutenant."

        McCoy looked up, "Yes, Spock?"
        "We have found something," he paused, "Not enough to be all of
Mr Scott's ship, but enough that it may not have survived."
        "You want me to tell him," said McCoy coming to stand in front
of his desk.
        Spock moved forward, "I do not wish to make you do this," he
said softly, "But it would be easier for him coming from you."
        McCoy nodded, "Okay, but first a question: What are the chances
the Scotty's alive?"
        "It is possible - there are several M class planets in the area
and the Copernicus might have survived.  It is more likely, however,
that the ship was destroyed."
        McCoy looked away and sighed softly.  "Thank you," he said.
        "For what?" asked Spock, his voice quiet.
        "For being honest with me."
        "I would be nothing else, Leonard."

        Kirk's quarters were a mess.  They looked very much like someone
had taken a phaser, stood in the centre of the room and turned around
firing.  In reality Kirk himself had trashed them and now sat
in the middle of the room looking to be in a worse state than the room.
        "You're drunk," said McCoy from the door.
        Kirk looked up, he hadn't noticed McCoy coming in, "Well done,
Doctor, how observant of you."
        McCoy ignored him, "Jim, we've found something.  Spock says it's
not enough to be all of the shuttle, but his chances aren't good."
        "Is that supposed to make me feel better?" Kirk asked scowling.
        McCoy sat down on the floor, "No, but you did ask to be informed
and that was before you got drunk."
        Kirk sighed, "I thought it would be easier this way."
        "What would be easier?" asked McCoy softly.
        "Letting him go."
        McCoy nodded, "I know what you mean.  It never works, trust me."
McCoy picked up Kirk's bottle and spun it around on the floor absently,
"What's making it so difficult, Jim?"
        "I don't know what you mean," said Kirk.  Seeing McCoy's looked
he changed his mind, "All right so I do.  That doesn't mean I'm going to
tell you though."
        "Why not?  Think I wouldn't understand?"
        Kirk opened his mouth to respond but changing his mind closed it
        "Jim, you can tell me.  I'm your friend.  Please let me help
        "I loved him, Bones, I loved him," he said, finally breaking
down after the strain of the last few days.
        McCoy stayed silent for a few moments letting Kirk's grief wash
over him.  "Did Scotty know?" he asked quietly.
        "No," he said shaking his head, "And now I can't even tell him,
because he's dead."
        "We don't know that yet, Jim."
        "You know it, I know it and even Starfleet knows it.  We have no
choice but to give up."
        The bottle stopped spinning, "No.  You might think it's a good
idea now, but give it a few days without knowing and you'll change your
mind.  I admit the chances aren't high but we've pulled through with
odds worse than this before."
        "I suppose your right."
        McCoy smiled, "Of course I'm right."  He stood, "We won't give
up until we find him, one way or another.  Now in the meantime do you
want something for the killer hangover you're going to have in the

        "Spock to McCoy."
        "McCoy here, what is it, Spock?"
        "We have found the rest of the Copernicus."
        "Any lifesigns nearby?"
        "Unknown, there are several caves nearby that the scanners can't
        "So when do we go?"
        "Now.  Meet me in Transporter Room 2.  Spock out."

        Only Spock and McCoy beamed down.  When they did it didn't take
them long to find what they were looking for.  The Copernicus, what was
left of her, had crashed nose first into the mouth of one of the caves.
If Scotty had survived he had been damn lucky.
        The two men were painfully aware of this.  Both dreaded the task
in front of them but wanted it over as quickly as possible.
        They started across to the shuttle at a purposeful walk.
Neither were sure who turned it into a run.  Time might have been of the
essence just after the ship had crashed, but now it served no purpose.
        Spock reached it first.  He struggled to open the warped access
hatch and had to wait for McCoy to catch him up.  Together they removed
the hatch.  Spock climbed into the shuttle, McCoy close on his heals. 
        They both saw him at the same time.  Scotty's lifeless body lay
trapped between the console and his chair.  His body was almost
        Spock turned to McCoy who walked forward to the body all
business. Spock knew that the Doctor would drop this facade once he was
alone.  He would, just as Kirk had done, try to find solace in a bottle.
Spock could not let him face this alone.  He walked over to McCoy and
asked what he could do.
        "We need to get him out of the shuttle for transport."
        Spock nodded and set to work clearing the wreckage.

        "McCoy to Kirk."
        "Go ahead."
        "Please join me in Sickbay.  McCoy out."
        He walked out into the main Sickbay were Spock stood waiting.
        The Vulcan raised a curious eyebrow.
        "He's on his way." McCoy closed his eyes as he leant against the
bulkhead.  "I wish I didn't have to do this.  We might have cleaned him
and bandaged him up, but neither you or I can change the fact that he is
        McCoy felt a pressure on his arm, "The Captain will survive,
Leonard.  Even so he will need our help.  You must turn now to the
patient you can save."
        He looked at Spock, "I know you're right but that doesn't make
it any easier."
        "I know."
        They stood supporting each other until Kirk walked into the
Sickbay.  Seeing their expressions he knew what had happened.  "He's
dead isn't he."
        "Yes.  He died the moment his shuttle crashed."
        Kirk nodded, "Can I see him?"
        Silently the three men walked into the Mortuary.  Kirk stood as
if paralysed by shock at the foot of the slab.  Then the spell broke and
the tears began to fall.  McCoy guided him to a chair and sat him down
in it. 
        "Please leave me alone."
        "Of course," said Spock.
        He and McCoy left leaving Kirk with the battered and bruised
body of the only person he had ever really loved.