Title: Tragedy
Author: Jazz Man
Series: TOS (TNG time)
Rating: PG-13
Codes: S, Mc
Disclaimer: Blah, blah, blah.
Summary: McCoy falls ill and writes to tell Spock about it. This is set in TNG
time before Spock is seen on Romulus in "Unification". The lyrics throughout
are from Emmylou Harris' "Tragedy" from the album "Red Dirt Girl", which served
as inspiration for the story.

Note: This was the story I was writing that I wasn't sure fit. After having
shown it to the Big Yin, no not Billy Connelly, our own dear Janet, I'm
posting. The Vulcan date system I just made up and I would fill in the final
stardate, but I've lost the book that told me what it was. Enough blether.

Jazz Man

Some say it's destiny
Whether triumph or tragedy
But I believe we cast our nets out on the sea
And nothing we gather
Comes for free


I'm sending this through the Vulcan Embassy who claim not to know where you
are. I'm sure they do, but won't tell some cantankerous old son of a bitch who
comes in off the street. Not even when I show my Starfleet ID.
I'm not sure why I'm trying to reach you, only that there's no one else to
tell. I collapsed about a week ago, just plain fell down. Feeling meek, if
you'll credit me that, I went to see a doctor. Course the one I got was about
twelve. She says that I have some made up sounding disease that wasn't even
invented when I was at medical school. My own diagnosis is that I'm getting
old. I suppose that approaching 140 is old, well, unless your a Vulcan.
They tell me to take it easy. What have I been doing for the past twenty
years? Being a retired admiral is real tiring, don't you know. I've done
nothing since Jo died. Did I tell you about that? I don't remember. Can't
seem to recall when I saw you last.
Sometimes I think I miss you, then I realise how daft that is. S'not like
your dead, not like everyone else. The boy they took me to see yesterday told
me it's best not to think like that. What in hell's name does he know? When
you get to my age, our age,
it's hard not to think like that.
Humour an old man and write and tell me what your upto that's so secret they
won't even tell an old friend.


Leonard McCoy.

Stardate 45046.3
Doctor McCoy,

Your message reached me this morning. I suspect it has taken some time, but
as there was no date on the message I cannot be sure. I am saddend to hear
that you are unwell. Please follow the instuctions of your doctors who I am
sure are not twelve as you
seem to think.
We last met a year ago, at Captain Sulu's wake in San Fransisco. When Joanna
died I was unable to be on Earth. Savar, my secretary, attended on my behalf.
I grieve with thee still. Joanna was a most interesting woman.
I returned to Vulcan some days ago after spending some time in the Beta
Quadrant. The Emmbassy would have been unable to tell you of my whereabouts as
they are bound by rules of privacy. Any future correspondence should be sent
to my father's house on Vulcan. My father or his wife will be able to contact
me if I am not on Vulcan.
I am currently in the early stages of negotiations with a race in the Beta
Quadrant. Due to the sensitivity of this matter I cannot tell you which race,
sufice to say that peace would be a welcome thing. I hope to return there soon
to continue my work, but my father has been ill and I was called back to Vulcan.
Have you informed Captains Chekov and Uhura of your fragile state of health?
I would advise that you do so.
Please keep me informed of your progress.

Spock cha Sarek.

I would have paid down through the years
A price beyond rubies, beyond tears
To keep you safe with me
But your suspision and your fear
Your vow to let nobody near was your trinity
Such a tragedy

July 3, 2368
Atlanta, Georgia

I am not a complete imbicile, Spock. I know who Savar is and I know how to
write a god damn letter. And while we're at it my 'state of health' is not
fragile. And anyway Nyota retired to some planet beyond the back of beyond to
study some alien language and Pavel's on his final tour. He doesn't need some
bad news from home, he's still having difficulties coping with Hikaru's death.
It's a good thing he's got Demora out there with him. The poor boy's been
through more than enough, but that's what you get for being an Enterprise
crewmember - lashings of respect drowned by a bucketfull of pain and upset.
How's your father? Hopefully it's nothing to serious, modern medicine can
work wonders. How's Sarek's wife, the one with a strange name. And how's your
little brother? I haven't seen him since his wedding. That's when I first met
the Captain of the D, Picard. He seems a nice enough fellow, but he's no James
T Kirk. Did I tell you that the Klingon officer, Worf, apologised to me
because his grandaddy couldn't get me and Jim off the
charges? That surprised the hell out of me, a Klingon apologising.
Talking of Klingons, are you on some kind of crusade for galactic peace? Or
just trying to get more treaties than your father? Like I always wanted to be
a better doctor than my father. I was glad I had a daughter, one I could be
proud of. Did you ever regret not having a family? I mean you did have
Saavik, and Valeris. They must have hurt.
Do you plans involve visiting Earth anytime soon? I'd like to see you again,
talk about old times, old people. Seems no one wants to listen anymore. We
are old and grey, my friend, old and gray.
Tell me how your peace talks go and how things are with you.


Len (that is my name, remember? And you're not on a ship anymore).

3rd Day, 5th Cycle, 2118

My memory is excellent, it is merely that I have never been sure what it was
apropriate to call you. 'Bones' was the Captain's name, and everyone else
called you Dr McCoy.
My father has a disease known as Bendii Syndrome, it is unlikely he will live
more than a year. His wife, whose name is Perin, tries to make him as
comfortable as possible.
Sarek finds it difficult to be with other Vulcans as Bendii Syndrome affects
emotional control, so I spend little time with him. It is best for both of us.
Silak is fine. His eldest is to enter the Vulcan Science Acadamy this year.
His is as close to pride as any Vulcan may be. His wife is pregnant with thier
third child, a girl.
I was always proud of Saavik, even after what happened whilst we were in the
past. She did her best to do what was expected. Valeris, I was blinded by her
She had mastered her emotions, or so I thought, far better than I could ever
hope to. In truth, whislt she had embraced logic, she had no understanding of
If I were Human, I might admit to wishing to outdo my father. It would prove
to him that I have not wasted my life. My being a highly decorated Starfleet
officer did not seem to impress him.
I do not know how good a doctor your father was, but I know of no one more
skilled than you.
I have no plans to visit Earth, but this may change in the near future. If
all goes well, I will return to the Beta Quadrant soon. With regard to Lt.
Worf, emotionally driven species are known for their surprising behaviour.
If I am to leave Vulcan again, Perin will know how to contact me.


I drew the best hand you'd ever hold
Then cashed my winnings in long ago
Settled for silver, how could I know
You were waiting
With the gold

August 12, 2368
Atlanta, Georgia

I'm sorry about your father. I know you said it was difficult to be with him,
but don't leave things too late. Don't regret things left unspoken. I know
who that feels and it's not nice.
I've just heard that Pavel's coming home in two months. The 'baby' of the
Enterprise is about to retire. Was it really that long ago? It seems like
yesterday that I first boarded the Enterprise. I remember thinking that you
and I would never get on. Boy, was I wrong about that.
I don't know what my opinion counts for, but I was always, am always,
impressed by your accumplishments. You're a damn fine fellow, Spock. Don't
let anyone tell you otherwise.
I would write more, but they want me to go in for some more tests today. I
don't know what good drawing blood and messing about with it will do. I
suppose we must be tolerant of the young, if only so that they might grow old.

Yours, as ever,


8th day, 9th Cycle, 2118

I should not have thought that you would have left things unsaid. In all the
years I have known you, you have been a most outspoken person. I have known
you to speak for long periods without every saying anything.
I will admit that I was unsure of our ability to 'get on' as you put it. You
seemed then a most emotional Human. I only discovered later that you kept your
deepest feelings hidden, perhaps sometimes from yourself. Your opinion does
matter and you do me great honour by expressing it.
I, to, had not realised that Pavel's time as a Starfleet officer was so near
to over. He was a fine addition to any crew.
Your doctors know what they are doing. It is thier profession as it once was
yours. The medical science of today is advanced. I am sure that your doctors
are doing what they can for you.
I have made progress with my negotiations and shall return to the Beta
Quadrant within the month. If all goes well, I may be able to publicly anounce
my intentions.
As always, please keep my informed of your progress.


I could have caused your heart to yield
But I was only a disturbance in the field
Of your dreams

September 1, 2368
Atlanta, Georgia

I shall eagarly await an anouncment from you. It will be nice to finally know
what you're up to. I still think you want to be hearalded as the bringer of
galactic peace. All things considered that's not a bad goal in life.
I do belive that all 'my' doctors want to do is takeme away from my home and
subject me to tests upon tests upon tests. It must be revenge for a lifetime
of being on the other side. Typical, you spend you life easing the pain of
others and in the end they use you as a pin cushion.
There is only one thing I regret having never said. Even so, I do not know if
I could speak after a silence of so long. I may still have a chance, I'm not
I am sorry to say so little, but I am tired today and it is so late. Outside
it's dark. If I weren't so tired I would go for a walk. I always liked
walking in the dark, it's a good time to think and I have so much to think
about. Not tonight, nothing more tonight.
It's probably morning where you are now, but good night anyway.


And I will never see you cry
You won't be with me when I die
A waste of you and me
A tragedy

September 14, 2368
San Fransisco

I've been moved to the Fleet hospital in San Fransisco. Despite my protests
they've finally gone and done it. I would rather have stayed at home. The
doctors say, and for once I agree with them, that I don't have long left.
It would mean a lot to me if I could see you again, before I go. If you can,
please come to Earth.


Stardate 45xxx.x
Beta Quadrant

I can be with you in two days. If I had known how serious you condition was I
would have visited sooner. Kaiidth.
Two days, Leonard.


We took the wrong train to
Kingdom come now
No more damage
Can be done baby
It's just what the world don't need
It's another stinkin tragedy

Fleet Hospital,
San Fransisco,
17 September, 2368

After showing his id to several awstruck guards, Spock was let into the
hospital. He crossed quickly to the reception desk.
"I am here to visit a patient, but I do not know where he is."
The receptionist nodded, "Alright, sir, if you'll give me his name."
"Leonard McCoy."
The man looked up, "I'm sorry, sir, but Dr McCoy died last night."
Spock stared at the man.
"He died in his sleep. It was very peaceful, so they said."
"For that, I am glad," said Spock.
The receptionist frowned for a moment, "Are you Mr Spock?"
"I am."
"Dr McCoy left something for you," he said handing over a package. "There's a
room through there, if you'd like to be alone."
Spock inclined his head in thanks and went to where the man had pointed. He
sat down heavily and was still for a moment. Finally he opened the package.
Inside was a set of keys and a letter. Leaving the keys for the moment he read
the letter. It was almost impossible to read, written as it was in McCoy's
doctor's scrawl which was worsened by age.

September 15, 2368
San Fransisco

I got your letter this morning. I don't know that I can wait two days. I
will try, but though the will is strong the flesh is weak. It does me good to
know that you are coming. That you want to be here. In case I'm gone when you
get here, I want to set some things down in black and white.
To begin with all that I own is to be yours. Do with it as you see fit. I'd
rather you didn't sell the house, it's been in my family for generations, but
the rest doesn't bother me. It's not like I'll be here to see it. Let what's
left of the Enterprise crew take something if they want to.
I've given my body to medical science, so there won't be a funeral. If you
think a wake would be good, then have one. Just make sure everyone has a good
time. You can break into my liquor cupboard if things aren't going well.
I wanted so much to see you again after all this time. Some things need to be
spoken between us. Or from me to you, at least. I always thought that there
would tomorrow to say things. For me there is no tomorrow. What I wouldn't
give to see you one last time. To hold you close and feel your heartbeat next
to mine. To kiss you just once.
I sometimes think we could have had a life together, a good life. What is
that Vulcan phrase of yours? Kaiidth. What is - is. Well I am Human, I have
regrets. Not many, just the one. Not bad for such a long life.
I have to go now, for I am so very tired. Before I go, know only that I loved
Live long and prosper, Spock cha Sarek.

Simply yours,

Leonard McCoy

Spock stared at the letter in his hands. Closing his eyes, he whispered,
"Len." After a moment he folded the letter up and put it and the keys to
McCoy's house in their emvelope. He stood and went back to the reception.
"May I see him?" he asked.
"Certainly, sir," said the receptionist. "If you'll follow me."
The man led Spock through the hospital to a small room. There on the table
lay McCoy.
"I'll be outside," siad the receptionist.
Spock moved closer to McCoy. Looking down he saw an old, lined face in
repose, as though asleep. In his mind he saw a face years younger. The face
of someone Spock had spent more time than he would gladly admit thinking about.
He thought back now to times when different things could have been done. Like
when McCoy had told the others to leave when they got the news about Saavik.
McCoy would have offered comfort then, but held back out of respect for Spock.
Other moments flashed before him. He knew they could have had a life together,
a good life, as McCoy had said. "Kaiidth," he said, but the words sounded
hollow to him.
He lent forward and kissed McCoy on the forehead. That wish at least could be

That's how the story goes
Our chapter's coming to a close
We are history
But I will always think of you
Every day until my days are though
You made be believe
In tragedy