|Title: In Medias Res #2
Author: T'Bitch (email@example.com)
Word Count: 2157, excludes header.
Rating: PG for implied sex
Summary: answer to a challenge: Write an S/Mc where one mourns the
death of the other, and in doing so, explains to a friend how it all
Disclaimer: While I do not own the characters contained herein
(Paramount does), I own this particular arrangement of words. It
cannot be redistributed or archived without this header and my name
attached. That said, feedback is always welcome.
Author's Notes: As I write this note, I'd like to point out that it
is 3:05 am (0305 hours) local time. I did promise myself that I
would finish it by the deadline, and here it is, for good or ill.
Which sounds like something Hemingway might have said, but probably
didn't: Just tell the story and let them work it out. So I told the
Daleks are sort of overgrown pepper shakers from the TV programme
Doctor Who (1963 - 1996, plus or minus). I've always found them
scarier than, say, the paper mache planet eater (eg The Doomsday
Machine). They're in there because there should really be a story
set before this in time in which they have an adventure crossover
thing, but it isn't done yet. This is the problem of having worked a
chronology out in my head but not having finished all the stuff yet.
(note from later the next day) it turns out today isn't the deadline -
monday is. At least I finished it before my move. Though I started
out taking things in a different light, I think this one is at least
set at a time that one might guess. I make no apologizes.
"Ain't it just like the night to play
tricks when you're tryin to be so quiet."
"You'll be fine," McCoy told him gruffly, "So long as you keep your
damn fool self away from breakable objects."
Kirk flexed his hand without pain. "You okay, Bones?"
The doctor gave him a look that said if you want your organs to
remain internal you won't continue this line of questioning. Kirk of
course decided to press the issue.
"Bones, you really don't look so great."
"Well thank you, Jim, you look real pretty yourself."
"Have you been sleeping?"
The CMO sighed and sat down. "Is it that obvious?"
"'Fraid so, Bones. What's up?"
"We all miss him, Bones. But beating yourself up isn't going to
bring him back. I know you didn't end on the best of terms, but
"The best of terms? Ha!" McCoy seemed suddenly angrier than Kirk
could recall seeing him in a long time. "I'll have you know, Jim,
that there was a lot you didn't know about me and him."
"Like we were bond mates, that's what."
"Like hell you were."
"You don't believe me?"
"Frankly, no. I can't recall seeing you two say more than four civil
words to each other at a time - why would you have decided to, to-"
Kirk's protests faded under the doctor's stare. Moving deliberately,
he opened one of his desk drawers and removed a holo that had
obviously been recently relegated to that ignoble resting place. The
captain thought briefly that he had noticed something was different
about the desk's top, then he looked at the picture and his mind
stopped working for a bit.
It was of Spock and McCoy. They stood close, the doctor leaning
against the tall vulcan, his head inclined to catch some amusing wry
comment. It was unposed, the photographer having caught them
unawares - Kirk could just imagine the startled looks that would
cross the subject's faces in the next moment. The sky in the
background was deeply blue, and the trees had a dark green look, as
if it had just rained. Obviously it had been taken on Earth, though
he couldn't place where.
Kirk found himself sitting in a chair in front of McCoy's desk,
though he couldn't remember actually sitting down. There were tears
in his eyes, too, from seeing an image of his old friend so alive
"I couldn't look at it either, anymore. It was one of my favorites.
Saavik took it when we visited her in Oregon. We had gone hiking."
A cup of something strong-smelling and quite possibly alcoholic
thumped down on the surface in front of him. Across the desk Bones
sat down with a cup of tea.
"I, that is, Bones, I'm so...I'm so sorry. But when, I mean, why
"Invite you? We did," the older man drawled. "You couldn't make it."
"Wait, that..." Kirk's mind raced backwards to a brief communique
received just after the end of their mission with V'ger. "I'd have
come if you had mentioned what it was about."
"We...hadn't originally planned for it to happen then. It
just...these things sometimes take on a momentum of their own."
"You didn't tell me."
"We kept meaning to, Jim. But things came up. And they kept coming
up. We were going to take you out to dinner as soon as we returned
from the training cruise."
"I guess it worked out after all, then, though instead of dinner I
seem to get..." he sipped the drink and choked. "What is this?"
"Saurian brandy. It's very strong."
"Thanks for the warning."
"I'm sorry. My mind is just...everywhere in little bits."
"I understand." He watched his friend for a moment. "Lost your
stomach for whisky, Bones?"
"Lately, yeah. It's strange, but I've developed a liking for tea.
Spock would be pleased, if he were here. He always was trying to
Kirk wasn't sure what he thought about the faraway look in the
other's eyes that appeared, then vanished a moment later.
"Could I ask, how long had this been going on?"
"A long time. Since right after Spock's first pon farr."
"Jesus, that long? I can't believe I didn't notice. I can't believe
you didn't tell me!"
"We were discreet. It seemed like the right idea at the time. We
didn't want to put you in the position of having to order us to
"It never seemed to interfere with your duties, as far as I can
"There were moments..."
"The mirror universe...I remember the haunted look on your face."
"That's part of why we held off bonding for so long, though I kick
myself for it now."
"You were together for a long time, though. You made him happy -
don't doubt that."
"I don't." Bones smiled into his tea. "I sometimes think I knew
that longer than he did."
"Tell me how it started, Bones. I can't imagine it." This was Jim's
method of subtlety: drop it for a day or two, then bring it up during
a friendly after-dinner drink.
"Huh-uh, Jim. I don't kiss and tell." But you did tell Shvah when
he asked, years ago, said a low familiar voice in his mind. That
peculiar child of Vulcan, back after the call to Gol came. You
hardly knew him. Surely you can tell Jim, your oldest friend. The
doctor relented. "But I suppose I can make an exception in your
case, since I know he'd've told you if we had ever gotten around to
telling you together." He hardly registered the flash of pain as it
crossed his friend's face, though it was mirrored on his own.
Kirk watched as McCoy got up to pour himself another cup of
tea. "Bones, you don't have to if you don't want to."
"I want to. I owe it to you on his behalf." He took his seat again
and set the tea down.
It was right after that botched wedding and that whole mess with
those Daleks, right before we finally got some shore leave. There
was an accident in engineering during gamma shift and I was called in
to repair the damage done, so I scheduled myself out of the office
for alpha shift. But for some reason I wasn't that tired, so I found
myself on the observation deck.
The Enterprise was in orbit around some planet, I forget the name of
it now. But all I saw out the window were stars, billions of them,
dancing multicolored points in the blackness. Then I looked over and
saw him standing beside me.
"They're beautiful, aren't they?" He didn't say anything, just
tilted his head slightly. I felt very sad and tired all of a
sudden. "I suppose you think I'm very illogical for letting a
scientific phenomena provoke an emotional response in me." I sighed
and turned my attention back to the window, though I knew he was now
staring intently at me.
"Until very recently I was bonded to someone, as you now know, and
therefore was perhaps unable to express my...feelings, as you so
often insisted I should do." His voice startled me, and the way he
said the word `feelings' you'd've thought he was talking about a dead
rat, but I quickly recovered my wits.
"Are you admitting that you do have emotions?" I turned fully
towards him to gage his reaction. "Specifically, you seem to be
implying you feel unexpressed love."
"Indeed it would seem that way," he replied gravely.
"And logically you would not be telling me this simply for my
health." There was a long pause as we both followed this train of
reasoning to its conclusion. "So-"
"Mr Spock, please report to the bridge." Kirk's voice on the
intercom broke up our quiet discussion.
"On my way." He turned to me. "Would you join me in my quarters for
dinner this evening?"
"Sure. Around 1900 hours?"
He nodded and left. I realized my knees were shaking and sat down.
After a minute I said aloud, "Well, that was unexpected." Though,
truth to tell, not unhoped for. It had been a long time since I had
felt the excitement course my veins like that.
I managed to sleep till the end of alpha shift, then got up to check
in down in sick bay.
"How're you feeling, Doc?" Nurse Chapel greeted me cheerfully.
"A lot better, thanks Chris. A little sleep does wonders. And you?
Did you have an eventful day?"
"Hardly. Not even a common cold to treat. I managed to get all
those vaccination records filed."
"You'll leave me with nothing to do! Go on, get out of here. Have a
"You too, Doc."
I went back to my quarters and fidgeted. There were so many
questions that suggested themselves now that the parameters of our
relationship were changing. What should I wear? How to act? Should
I bring a small gift - some bourbon, maybe? Should I wait for him to
make the first move?
I hadn't been so nervous since I was a teenager picking up Sharon
Wester for the junior prom. It occurred to me that if I came out of
tonight still speaking with my date, I'd've done better than I did
with Sharon. That threw me into a fit of giggles from which it took
several minutes to recover.
I started when the door sprang open. Spock was standing on the other
side looking calm as ever in a black t-shirt and trousers.
"Ah, hi. I, er-" I offered him a bottle of Bajoran Spice wine I had
"Please, come in." He stepped aside to let me through. "I have
prepared a small meal..." We both tensed slightly as I brushed
accidentally against his arm.
The door swished shut behind us and he kissed me.
"Just like that? How direct...I suppose I should have expected as
much," Kirk chuckled. "Did you ever eat dinner that night?"
McCoy frowned, first in irritation and then in confusion. "I can't
remember. Huh. I don't think so, though."
"So then what happened?"
"Later, Jim. I'm tired."
"I'll hold you to that," the younger man grinned. "I should be
getting to bed anyway. Night."
"Night." Bones closed his eyes as his friend left. Unbidden the
images returned to him.
"I am sorry, Leonard. This is not how I planned for the evening to
Spock's voice was nearly an octave lower than usual. I laughed and
rested my head on his bare shoulder. "How did you plan it?"
"I had thought we would eat first."
"Ah well, the best laid plans of mice and vulcans..."
I just lay there unmoving for a while, savoring the heat of his skin,
the light musky smell of our mingled sweat. I hadn't felt so happy
in years - not since before my wife and I split up...I had completely
forgotten what it felt like to be loved, so I just closed my eyes and
basked in it. Somewhere in the back of my mind I realized that Spock
probably hadn't felt this before, and I was glad that he was there
with me to experience it instead of off with someone else.
Eventually practical matters surfaced. "I suppose...we probably
shouldn't tell anyone about this just yet." He considered my
proposal so long I rushed ahead. "I mean, we're serving together and
there are some regulations about that, and you have a career to think
about and all..."
"Jim will be unhappy when he finds out we did not tell him at once."
"I think he'd be unhappier if we told him and he had to tell us to
keep our hands to ourselves."
Spock nodded. "In truth, I was going to suggest the same course of
"I wish I could tell him, though. I'd love to see the look on his
"We will tell him eventually. I admit I am curious about what his
reaction will be."
"Probably keel over in shock."
"Surely not. He's canny...he will probably just laugh and say he
knew it all along."
"You might be right." I kissed his neck. "Ah, have I told you I
"Not in the last ten point four minutes."
I drifted away from my memories and found myself sitting in my cabin,
half asleep. "Oh, Spock...I always thought you'd be there when I
His lined face looked sympathetic.
"It's all so empty since you left. I feel hollow, Love."
"Hush, Leonard. Things will be fine, in the end."
"That's easy for you to say."
"Hush." Ghostly arms enfolded me as I wept.
In the morning I awoke in my bed with no recollection of getting
there the previous night.
I felt terribly alone.