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Within a ray of warm afternoon sunlight he began to feel their son stir under his left hand. Through his bond with the unborn child he could sense what he could only label as restlessness in him now. A small foot suddenly kicked out landing in the middle of Spock’s motionless palm. Even though Spock was most impressed with the both the velocity and strength of the kick, he was immediately concerned that the child’s energetic movements would disrupt his aduna’s sleep. The last two weeks of her pregnancy had been quite tiring for her and he desired now that her sleep remained undisturbed. He had noted that her daily afternoon naps had been increasing in duration for the past 7 earth days and he knew that this was her body’s way of compensating for the additional stress that the large child was exerting on her body.

Carrying their son to term meant that she was now at the end of her 10th month of pregnancy. Nyota had been quite happy last week when the baby had moved lower thus allowing her to breathe easier. Although Nyota rarely complained about the extended length of her pregnancy, she had informed him this morning that she was now quite ready for ‘their bun to be out of the oven’.

Spock knew that this ‘lightening’ was the beginning of the birth process and he was grateful that his aduna was now being afforded some measure of relief. He had to admit to himself that he had also been relieved but at the same time anxious realizing that the gestation period was rapidly drawing to a close now and that he was in fact rapidly approaching fatherhood. In his years prior to meeting his k'hat'n'dlawa, he had always considered himself solitary, destined to be the last of his father’s line, and had resolved himself to an heirless life. But after he and Nyota bonded that fateful day of her zip line accident, the desire to produce offspring with his bondmate began to grow steadily within him.

As if sensing his father’s thoughts, their child once again slowly pushed his small foot into the palm of his hand. This time Spock gently pushed back. Through his bond with his son he could now sense the child’s curiosity as well as genuine enjoyment at his response. Suddenly impatient to finally hold his child in his arms, Spock acknowledged that he too was quite ready for their ‘bun’ to be out of the oven.

It was Saturday afternoon and the men of Nyota’s family had traveled to the local Walnut Creek community center to engage in an activity that the locals referred to as a ‘swap meet’. Nyota’s parents and both sets of her grandparents had arrived 17 Earth days ago in order to attend the birth of his and Nyota’s first child. Her family had been firmly convinced that Nyota would deliver her first child 14 Earth days ago citing previous family history, but obviously not taking into account the Vulcan physiology of their child which mandated a longer gestation period. But the early arrival of Nyota’s family’s had pleased his aduna and Spock was very grateful for that.

Spock had been able to convince the Grayson clan to wait until just before the projected due date, and so his mother’s family was now scheduled to arrive in 2.5 Earth days, Spock’s own father was currently in route and would be landing in San Francisco at 13:37 local time tomorrow afternoon. Spock was most grateful to have enough bedrooms and living space in their house to accommodate all of their relatives comfortably.

Spock had joined his African male family members the past two Saturdays for the ‘Swap Meet’ at the Walnut Creek convention center and he had quickly noted that in direct contradiction to the name given to this event, he had found that very few items were actually exchanged during this gathering, unless that is one counted the many stories, some outrageous and most likely fabricated, about either the value and/or the authenticity of any one of the hundreds of items that were laid out upon the many tables in the exhibit area of the large center.

Nonetheless it had been pleasing to him to further bond and engage with his clansmen as well as converse with the many local as well as intergalactic ‘outmoded’ technology traders at the event. He had noted that even Nyota’s spendthrift paternal grandfather; Murunga had purchased at least one item each of those Saturdays, although not without a period of intense verbal haggling over the price. The previous Saturday, Spock had visited with several of his colleagues from Berkley whom he found had frequented this event in search of rare and or historical technology from Earth as well as other worlds to add to their own personal collections.

Even though Nyota had prodded him to attend the event today, Spock found that did not wish to leave her side. And the beaming smile that lit up her face as she took his right hand in her left one and led him to their bedroom was proof to him that she did not wish him to leave her side either. So he had lightly meditated while she slept peacefully, his body wrapped protectively around hers until his son’s well placed foot had roused him.

“He is going to be taller and stronger than you.” Nyota mumbled into their shared pillow as she lay on her right side facing away from him.

Spock leaned into her and placed a tender kiss into her hair. “Ha, yel t'nash-veh.” He whispered to her. “And he will have the wisdom and heart of his mother.” He finished in Kiswahili.

She softly groaned as she began to stretch and slowly pushed back into him. Through their bond he could now feel the discomfort in her back. He slowly withdrew from her at the same time reaching around her to gently pull her robe open. She raised her left arm to allow him to pull the light cotton robe off her shoulder exposing her back to him. He slowly began to massage her back focusing on her overworked muscles as she quickly began to relax into his touch.

Anahisi hivyo nzuri.” She murmured letting a long sigh escape her lips with the words.

And as usual the sound, smell, and feel of her now threatened to cut her massage short, but once again he forced himself to tamp down upon the intense feeling of his building arousal as he continued to gently massage her back and shoulder muscles.

As his hands continued their work, he gaze became redirected to her well rounded abdomen. Throughout her pregnancy her hormones had rendered her even more amorous and her appetite for sexual intimacy seemed to increase day by day as her body began to change. And since it was his duty as her adun to attend to her needs, he quickly realized that her increasingly active libido would also require additional methods of achieving satisfaction other than from orgasm.

So during a very late night round of research, he located detailed instructions for an ancient Vulcan form of back massage for use with pregnant females. And in the morning he was most gratified to find that this particular massage technique did indeed work to ease the strain on her back. And as for his own needs, he found that his left hand would suffice to quell his own rampant desires for additional release once his aduna has fallen asleep, deeply relaxed and sated from her massage.

Suddenly brought out of his memories, his internal chron had indicated that 34 minutes and 29 seconds of intense massage had now passed without his adun showing any signs of falling asleep again although he could now sense that she was quite relaxed as well as pain free. He shifted his position slightly and once again felt his arousal painfully straining against his meditation pants.

Suddenly she began chuckling quietly to herself, reaching her left hand back to deftly zero in on the bulge in his pants. “You have such patience and resolve, my handsome husband.” She teased him using her own version of Montgomery Scott’s Highland accent as her fingers began to work her own brand of massage therapy on him. “And for such devotion to your husbandly duties you shall be greatly rewarded. Come now and take what is rightfully yours.” She finished gently tugging on him.

Although his patience had indeed been stretched almost to the point of premature ejaculation by her ministrations, he did manage to control himself as he swiftly removed his meditation pants. He then slowly and carefully positioned himself behind her as he lay on his side and carefully guided his lok home into her swollen and slick folds. He forced himself to move slowly deeper within her until he was completely seated inside her tight warmth. And with every time as if being his first, he felt most grateful as his body and katra centered knowing that such joining with his bondmate was indeed his own version of Sha-ka-ri. And with a quiet sigh of contentment he began to slowly move inside of her once again. He could feel her immediately become aroused and his nostrils were quickly filled with the heady, rich scent of her desire. Although he was not at all certain just how long he had been moving within his aduna because as usual when he was being intimate with her his internal chronometer ceased to function, she began to moan softly and he felt her inner muscles began to contract tightly around him just before the wave of her orgasm over took her. And he found he could hold back no longer as the intense smell and feel of her release immediately caused his sakal to quickly tighten and he erupted into her as he moaned his own release into the back of her neck, his lips finding and tenderly suckling the now damp skin there. And as usual for him, time stood still as he basked in the afterglow of their lovemaking.

As they lay there, their breathing and heart rates slowly returning to normal, her left hand began to stroke his left arm as it lay tenderly enveloping her swollen belly. She then sighed heavily and he could feel her warm breath puff against the hairs on his arm as she did so.

“I really don’t want to get up, but I promised I would help prepare our last meal this evening.” She admitted quietly as he slowly withdrew from her and she craned her neck to look at him over her shoulder, her eyelids batting coyly at him in teasing as he moved away from her. “But I do want to take a shower first and I think that a certain tall, dark, and handsome Vulcan should join me in the shower.”

And as usual with the smoldering look she was giving him, his lok twitched involuntarily and he knew that he must quickly tamp down the beginnings of his arousal if she were to keep her promise to her family regarding her participating in preparations for their last meal this evening. He then chose to engage her as a form of distraction for both himself and her. “Since I have been told numerous times that I do indeed fit such a description, then it seems that I have no choice but to join you in our shower.”

“Now wait just a minute!” she huffed. “No other female, or male for that matter better be calling you that, husband!” She responded with mock anger as he quickly walked around their bed and leaned down to pick her up slowly and carefully into a bridal carry.

“Because you know just how jealous I can be when it comes to you.” She announced emphatically to him reaching up to quickly kiss him under his chin.

He knew that given her personality, the emotion of jealousy was quite foreign to his aduna. Her generosity, compassion, and empathy were just some of the many personality traits that had admired in her long before they had bonded years ago. “I am quite aware.” He replied calmly, walking her into the bathroom and stepping into the open faced tiled shower with her cradled within his arms. He carefully set her down upon a low, secured stool that he insisted she use when bathing as a safety precaution. Since her 4th month of pregnancy he had refused to let her shower alone.

He reached out to activate the detachable shower head, adjusting the temperature before turning and cascading the warm water upon her back as he thoroughly wet her back. Next he picked up her favorite bottle of body bath and poured some into his left hand so that he could begin to slowly and tenderly lather her body with both hands but not before brushing her dark hair over her shoulder. As was their custom, he would wash her hair for her this evening before they retired for the night.

As she began to relax into his hands he washed her back gently massaging her back as he did so. She moaned as she ducked her head downward stretching her neck and shoulder muscles. Picking up a loofah he poured an ample amount of body wash onto it. He then gently pulled her up holding on to her with his right hand as his left hand lathered her buttocks, legs and feet bending over as he did so. Placing the loofah back on the shelf he then sat her back down on the stool once more after thoroughly rinsing her body.

He then maneuvered around her. Squatting down in front of her he reached out and slowly pushed her ebony hair to once again rest against her back. Pouring more body wash into his hands he began to gently wash her face, neck, shoulders and arms. He slowed down once he reached her breasts knowing just how tender they had become. He slowed down even more when he reached her abdomen, taking his time to lather the area thoroughly. He then rinsed her upper body, leaning down to press a soft kiss onto the top of her abdomen. She reached out to run her fingers through his hair tenderly massaging his scalp in silent thanks for his gesture.

Once again he picked up the loofah, squirting more body wash onto it. He then reached out to hold her by her right elbow as he helped her to stand up once again. He began to tenderly apply the body wash to her thighs, knees, lower legs and feet. He gently parted her folds with the pads of the fingers on his left hand as he carefully washed her outer and inner labia noting that his thick semen was no longer flowing from her vagina after their shared intimacy in bed. Although the thought of her carrying his copious seed within her body satisfied one of his base needs to possess his aduna, gravity could possibly cause her embarrassment in front of her family during their final meal this evening. And such emotional distress for his bondmate was unacceptable to him. After carefully washing her body he then sat the loofah on the tiled shelf and slowly began to rinse her lower body being careful to not force any water beyond her inner labia.

Setting her back down on the stool he quickly lathered up his own body and then swiftly rinsed himself as she sat in front of him and openly admired his body. And as usual, he felt an illogical burst of male pride and ego at her decidedly heated looks. But after years of marriage she knew better than to reach out to touch him as he bathed lest they once again seek out their pleasures in each other bodies which would no doubt cause her to be very late in arriving to help prepare the evening’s last meal if at all given their voracious appetite for each other’s bodies at this point in her pregnancy.

Holding on to her with one hand, Spock reached out of the shower and retrieved a large bath towel. Pulling her gently up to stand he began to meticulously dry her body, taking special care to be even gentler when drying hers breasts and abdomen. He dried the stool off before lowering her to sit once again. He then quickly toweled himself off using her towel. Although the reuse of the towel could be seen as a logical form of conservation of resources, Spock knew that his own prideful nature was the driving force behind the reuse of her towel as such use bestowed his aduna’s scent upon his own body effectively marking him as hers.

He quickly fastened the towel around his waist before he reached out of the shower to retrieve her bathrobe. Gently pulling her off the stool he helped her put on the robe, his fingers deftly tying the sash of her robe over her protruding belly before he leaned down to quickly kiss the soft fabric there. She ran the fingers of her left hand through his damp hair as he looked up to find her smiling broadly down at him. He felt his heart soar once again with the adoration for him he found within her eyes.

He tenderly wrapped his right arm around her and led her into their bedroom once again. As he walked with her he noted the time. “Your grandmothers will once again blame me if you are tardy in your duties to them.” He told her sitting her down on the chair at the foot of their bed. She giggled at him as he turned to their closet. “What is your clothing choice for this evening, my wife?”

She began laughing in earnest at him now. “The biggest and baggiest pants you can find and a fleece top, my husband….like I can possibly fit into anything else these days.”

He proceeded to quickly but gently help her out of her robe and into her clothes, once again settling her into the chair before quickly pulling his towel off as he walked into their closet.

As he entered the closet he heard what he knew to be his Nyota’s version of a ‘wolf whistle’ followed by the words “Nice butt!” with another round of muted laughter following immediately behind the words.

Understanding just how uncomfortable her current condition was making her, he was constantly grateful as just how positively and pleasantly she treated him in spite of how miserable she felt. Other males that he had conversed with had indicated that their bond mates had usually behaved quite badly towards them in the last months of their pregnancy. Spock had indeed considered himself most fortunate to have such a physically and mentally strong bond mate.

Emerging from the closet he knew that he must immediately show her once again just how much he cherished her. Although words still evaded him at times such as these, he had learned that as far as Nyota was concerned his actions always spoke volumes to her. He reached out to take her into his arms kissing her lightly on the lips before leaning down to kiss her stomach tenderly. He looked up to find a luminous smile lighting up her face thus confirming her understanding of the meaning behind his actions. Standing up and reaching out to envelope her left hand within his right one, he led her out of their bedroom, down the long hallway, and into the kitchen.

“Well…well…well! Late as usual.” Ishi called out to him teasingly as he led Nyota to the large table that was being used as a meal preparation area for the women. “When are you ever going to learn to say NO to her, grandson?”

“I can say with absolute certainty that any technique that would allow me to refuse my star anything is quite beyond my capacity to learn.” He replied willingly stepping into what he knew was a verbal ‘male trap’ as he pulled the chair out for Nyota and allowed her to sit down before slowly pushing her chair back towards the table stopping just short of her touching the table.

“You just haven’t been married long enough to have learned the correct technique yet, that’s all, mjukuu.” Namelok responded confidently her face twisting as if trying her best to hide a smile from them. “You’ll learn.”

“No matter the number of years that we will be married, Bibi, I am still quite convinced that my wife’s power over me will preclude my responses to her being anything other than total obedience,” he replied understanding Namelok’s jest and choosing to continue to engage with all of them. He found that he had grown very fond of Nyota’s mother as well as her grandmothers during the years that he had known them. And he knew for a fact that they all enjoyed lighthearted as well as confrontational teasing. He then ritualistically bowed to the older women “May this lowly slave of my star assist any of you with any of the meal preparation tasks as I remain here vigilant to my wife’s every need?”

“Whew!” Nyota’s mother Aisha exclaimed with a hearty laugh. “Well we may just need you to mop up all of that BS that you are laying down here, mjukuu!”

“I would be most honored to do so, Mama.” Spock replied as Nyota reached out to poke him in the abdomen with the index finger on her right hand.

“You are just as bad as they are.” Nyota informed him with a huff.

Spock leaned down to kiss her tenderly on the top of the head as Nyota picked up a potato and began peeling it, but not before smiling up at him. His heart swelled at the sight of her undisguised happiness. And he knew that he would always do whatever it took to make her happy.

The rest of the meal preparation was finished quickly as Spock sat down next to Nyota and began to peel and chop vegetables with her. He was most grateful that their property produced enough fresh vegetables from their gardens this time of year to sustain them.

This property had been his great grandfather’s farm and had been deeded down to him after the death of his mother. When he and Nyota had decided to retire from Star Fleet after she became pregnant with their first child, they had taken up residence on the property which still served as a bed and breakfast as well as a functioning winery and orchard. And even though neither one of them had wanted to leave Star Fleet they had decided that raising their family was now paramount in their lives. Star Fleet had responded to their retirement requests with offers of consulting work which they had readily accepted.

The male members of the family returned from their outing just as Spock finished washing the last bowl in the sink. The women had surrounded the large island as they placed the last of the prepared dishes of food upon the countertop. All of their meals were served buffet style.

Murunga was the first one through the side door entrance into an ante room placing a rectangular gray box upon the wooden bench next to the door used to store, as well as, put on outdoor shoes. “Just in time I see. I am starving.” He called out to them as Namelok stepped out to block his march to the island and pointed at the sink with the silent understanding that her husband was to wash his hands immediately.

“Old man” Namelok began as Murunga immediately changed course for the kitchen sink as Spock quickly shifted making room at the sink for him. “don’t tell me you bought another piece of space junk for us to take home.”

“I did NOT.” Murunga replied defiantly as he washed his hands in the sink “I brilliantly negotiated a low price and secured a valuable keepsake for Star and Spock from their old Enterprise, the original one that was abandoned on Altamid.”

Spock’s eyes immediately darted to the gray box sitting on the bench in the ante room. He immediately left the room to retrieve his tricorder. He would not take any chances with any of his family’s health especially the health of his wife and unborn son. He caught Nyota’s eye and silently requested she remain where she was until he returned.

“The vendor he bought it from had no knowledge of the function of the part, but I am positive that Spock can tell us after he examines it.” Badru added walking over to the sink to wash his hands followed closely behind by Suhuba.

“After we EAT.” Aisha insisted turning to follow Nyota’s eyes as she watched the doorway that Spock had just walked through.

As Spock scanned the box he found the box to be free of contaminants or harmful radiation. He noted the Enterprise’s seal on the box was just barely visible through the scuff marks. His curiosity was now peaked. But as his mother-in-law had stated very strongly, his curiosity would wait until after they finished their meal.

Nyota’s older sister had set up a video conference with them during the end of their meal. So while the rest of the family remained in the dining room to converse with her, Spock politely excused himself from the quite animated conversation and walked into the ante room, the mystery of the box now strongly calling to him. As Spock approached the box, suddenly Ishi stepped around him and laid her right hand upon the box effectively stopping him in his tracks. Spock knew that Ishi was quite gifted in the healing arts and intuitive insights and her mind was quite powerful. And he also knew that many of Nyota’s psychic talents had been genetically passed down to his bond mate from Ishi.

“You had been most unusually quiet and reflective during our meal, Bibi.” Spock softly said to her in Kiswahili. “What is it you sense about this box?”

Ishi remained silent and closed her eyes in concentration as she tilted her head down towards the box as if somehow communicating with it. “Twelve spirits lost yet found once again.” She told him firmly her eyes suddenly opening wide. “Grandson, you must help set them free.”

Ishi removed her hand slowly and stepped aside. Spock reached down and turned the tumbler locks into the release position. With a muted pop the lid rose from the box revealing the contents to him. He immediately recognized the coded markings as the central memory core of the main transporter of the Enterprise NCC 1701.

Ishi tilted up her head up in an effort to recapture his full attention. “In my recent conversation with your colleague Pavel Chekov” she began quietly as he obligingly looked away from the box and then down in order to meet her eyes. “he had informed me that he was researching the regeneration of latent transporter signals.”

Spock knew of Chekov’s research but still found himself most impressed with Ishi’s intuitive reasoning concerning the function of a piece of equipment that she couldn’t have possibly ever seen before.

Ishi smiled broadly at him. “I may be old, grandson, but I am NOT adverse to Pavel’s charms….OR a comprehension of his research.”

Spock could not keep his left eyebrow from rising slightly at her words. Ishi and Nyota were so much alike. Spock immediately reached for his com and noted that Chekov’s com was statused on auto reply. He immediately switched over to Montgomery Scott’s com.

“Mr. Spock!” Scotty began excitedly. “Oh my lord…it must be time! Wait…I.. I can meet you at the hospital in 10 minutes!”

“Mr. Scott…..Mr. Scott!” Spock called out through the com. “It is NOT time. Nyota is not yet in labor.” He spoke quickly trying his best to calm the excitable Scotsman down. “I am calling about another matter of importance.”

“What’s thot?” Scotty replied his voice sounding only just slightly calmer now. “Another matter of importance? Spit it out, man! What could be more important than the birth of your first son?!”

Spock knew better than to engage him in a dialog concerning rankings of personal import. “Mr. Scott, Nyota’s grandfather has secured from the outmoded tech market in Walnut Creek what appears to be the central memory core of the original Enterprise. And I have it on good authority that 12 intact latent signals still exist within the core. Perhaps Mr. Chekov…”

“Great gods!” Scotty interrupted in disbelief “When can you get the core to Chekov and me?”

“We are due for our weekly pre-natal appointment at the hospital tomorrow morning at ten hundred hours.” Spock began “I will transport the core to your lab immediately after her exam.”

“That ‘ill do Mister Spock.” The Scotsman replied excitedly. “Chekov and I will be waitin’ for you with bells on, sir.”

Spock knew better than to ask the purpose of the ‘bells’. “Until tomorrow then, Mr. Scott.” He acknowledged closing him com.

Nyota slowly walked into the ante room as Spock swiftly moved to her side and wrapped his left arm around her shoulders in silent support as his right hand moved to lay tenderly across her protruding abdomen. “So what’s in the box?” She asked looking up at him with a small smile on her face.

“An ancillary component of the main transporter of the Enterprise NCC 1701.” He replied simply, his eyes locking with hers. He felt her take in a quick breath of surprise. At this time he was choosing not to let his wife know about Ishi’s intuitive revelation as to what latent transporter signals still remained locked within the core. He would not risk her emotional involvement and possible disappointment concerning the recovery and conversion of those signals. During their years aboard the Enterprise, the loss of any crewmember had always been acutely felt by his aduna. As he looked over at Ishi she nodded her head to him in silent agreement to also abstain from disclosing such information to her granddaughter at this time.

“Wow!” she quietly exclaimed reaching up with her left hand to lay it upon his larger hand as he gently massaged her baby bump. “THAT must have been a chore for the space junkers to get their hands on.”

“Indeed so.” He agreed feeling her body begin to mold into his. She was tired. He knew that after consuming the last meal for the day she was now prone to bouts of sleepiness. They would retire early tonight. “I will present the core to Mr. Scott and Mr. Chekov tomorrow after our pre-natal appointment.”

“OUR, grandson?” Ishi teased him walking up in front of Nyota and pressing a quick, but gentle kiss onto her left cheek. “This husband of yours is definitely a keeper all right.” She told her granddaughter with a good natured chuckle.

“Yes HE is!” Nyota replied sending out a wave of gratefulness to him thru their bond. “He does pamper me so, Bibi.”

“Well that ‘pampering’ is going to change once the baby is born.” Ishi continued to tease them as she smiled broadly up at Spock. “And just wait until your 5th and 6th children are born!”

Spock heart rate sped up upon hearing Ishi’s words. He and Nyota wanted a large family. “Perhaps the quantity of my ‘pampering’ of my wife will change with the birth of more children. However I can assure you that the quality of my ‘pampering’ of her will never change, Bibi.” He countered knowing that Ishi appreciated such humor.

“Oh my!” she called out over her shoulder to them as she walked away from them. “You are too, too much, grandson!”

Spock reached down to gently pick Nyota up into a bridal carry. “And now to properly pamper my wife once again.” He whispered her in mock seriousness as he pressed his lips to hers in a tender yet quick kiss.

Nyota dramatically exhaled. “Oh well… if you insist, my husband.” She deadpanned.

“I DO indeed insist, my wife.” He replied as he carried her into the kitchen past Murunga and Namelok who were in charge of the post meal clean up this evening.

“My husband is taking me to be pampered.” Nyota called out to her grandparents as they both turned from the sink to watch Spock carry her across the room.

“So that’s what they are calling it now-a-days.” Murunga commented sarcastically as the dishcloth his wife was holding smacked him in the face. “Hey!”

“You better be glad that I had just dried and put away the pots and pans, old man.” Namelok replied with a huff. “Good night, grandchildren!”

“You should be VERY glad, Babu! I wouldn’t want you to get hurt!” Nyota playfully called out to him as Spock swiftly walked with her out of the kitchen and down the hallway towards their bedroom.

 

As the face of their son filled up the screen T’Khaf moved her hand slightly as adjusting the view towards the top of child’s head. Dark wavy hair could be seen clearly now.

“Peach fuzz.” McCoy remarked flatly looking over at Uhura and giving her a sly grin. “But don’t worry, all that fuzz will be replaced with real hair usually within 6 months or so.”

“Peach fuzz, Doctor?” T’Khaf repeated raising one eyebrow slightly.

“Peach fuzz, Doctor.” McCoy replied looking over to meet the Vulcan physician’s eyes. “That’s an analogy to the down-like hair that is the predecessor to real hair in babies.”

“Well peach fuzz or not, he’s beautiful.” Nyota replied smiling up at both doctors.

“He is that.” McCoy agreed smiling down at the soon mother to be.

“Agreed.” T’Khaf agreed. “He is a most handsome child.”

Spock looked between the two physicians. Nyota had been the first to notice a developing attraction between McCoy and T’Khaf. And she had openly teased him unmercifully about it at first until she realized that McCoy was quite serious about his intentions towards the Vulcan healer. T’Khaf’s husband had perished on Vulcan while T’Khaf was completing a pediatrics internship on earth. But she had elected to stay on Earth specializing in Vulcan/human obstetrics instead of relocating to New Vulcan.

Given her specialization McCoy had first recommended Nyota to T’Khaf once their 5 year mission was completed and they were earthside again. Nyota had become pregnant during the last two months of their last tour of duty and McCoy had been in communication with T’Khaf constantly during those two months. And Spock and Nyota had chosen to retain McCoy as an associate of T’Khaf for the remainder of her pregnancy much to the delight of McCoy who was now stationed earthside at Star Fleet’s central health facility in San Francisco.

Although the irony of McCoy becoming attracted to a Vulcan female was not lost on Spock, he was also quite pleased that McCoy no longer used the words ‘hobgoblin’ or ‘green blooded bastard’ in his presence now out of respect to T’Khaf.

As T’Khaf positioned Nyota for her pelvic exam, Spock moved towards the head of the exam table and took Nyota’s right hand within both of his as he averted his eyes from her body. McCoy moved with him also in silent respect for her privacy. Although through the years Spock had been able to somewhat control his possessiveness whenever his male Enterprise friends approached or came into physical contact with his aduna. But since she had become pregnant with their child his protectiveness of his wife had escalated. Other than the males of his and her families, he did not feel comfortable with any other male other than Leonard McCoy of course touching his aduna now. And even McCoy kept the physical contact with her to a minimum and he had declined to perform any type of pelvic exam on her. Spock had been most grateful to him for the Doctor’s understanding of his emotional state during this time.

“Your cervix is now at 62.8% effacement and you are currently dilated 3.5 centimeters.” T’Khaf announced after several minutes of silent but thorough examination.

McCoy playfully punched Spock in the shoulder. “Well now!” he began his face breaking out into a huge smile. “Looks like mini-Spock is finally on his way out!”

Spock suddenly felt a feeling of joy and relief through their bond. It would appear that the long wait was now coming to an end. Although he refused to acknowledge his own anxiety, he illogically found himself now fearing for his aduna’s safety if they returned home now. “Would it then be wise to remain in town instead of returning home?” he asked the doctors quietly.

Nyota giggled as she looked up to meet his eyes. “First labors are long and drawn out even for an Uhura woman. And this child of yours doesn’t really seem to be in a big hurry to meet the universe.” Nyota reassured him with a smile.

“She is correct, Spock.” T’Khaf agreed retracting the stirrups and gently helping place Nyota’s feet and legs once again upon the examination table. “The active labor interval for first born children is typically longer in duration than for subsequent children.”

“Just continue to do your normal routines especially taking walks.” McCoy reminded them as Spock gently pulled Nyota up to sit on the table. “But just to be on the safe side, no SEX. Given that your son is HUGE and has now moved down to camp out on your bladder, I want to make sure that you don’t confuse a urine leak with a WATER leak.” McCoy explained further. “Sometimes the water ‘breaks’ are more like leaks with such a big kid and we don’t want to take a chance with any bacteria getting into the amniotic sac and causing trouble.”

Spock turned to stare down at McCoy as McCoy looked up to catch his eye. “Now don’t go gettin’ your macho all up in arms, daddy.” McCoy gently chided him. “Believe you me, once this child is born you may as well kiss all of the romance in your life goodbye…at least for a month maybe even 6 weeks.” McCoy continued. “But you’ll survive. After all, cold shower therapy is good for the soul, Spock.”

Nyota started giggling again and Spock barely managed to cut his eyes away from McCoy to look down at her. “He’s right you know. You’ll survive, daddy. Besides you are going to be way too busy changing poopy diapers to care about anything else, even THAT.”

Spock’s left eyebrow involuntarily raised up slightly making Nyota giggle once again. As usual her logic was inescapable. It would be necessary to split his time between caring for his newborn son and for his aduna. And he had researched the topic thoroughly enough to understand that a post-partum human’s hormones usually precluded intimate relations for some period of time after birth.

“We will schedule you for another exam tomorrow afternoon and reassess your labor progression.” T’Khaf told them as Spock helped her stand up. “Until then you are both quite educated in what to expect and consequently what to do if anything unexpected arises.” T’Khaf told them as McCoy moved to stand next to the Vulcan healer.

“We will see you two lovebirds tomorrow then.” McCoy told them with a big smile earning a mollified but slightly annoyed look from Spock which caused McCoy’s grin to widen even further. “Remember: NO sex.”

Spock found he could not control the quite illogical urge to give McCoy what Nyota deemed as ‘The Look’ before turning to lead Nyota out of the examination room to which McCoy smiled broadly at him in return affording Spock absolutely no satisfaction whatsoever.

After a quick restroom stop with Spock standing guard over Nyota every second almost to the point of annoying her, Spock tucked the gray box under his left arm as he wrapped his right arm around his aduna and they slowly walked across the elevated walkway towards the Blakely building where Mr. Scott and Mr. Chekov’s lab was set up.

Chekov sprinted to meet them when they entered the administrative area of the lab. “I have missed you so much my big sister.” He told her in Russian as he gently hugged her after Spock released his hold on her without hesitation. It had been almost two weeks since they had seen the young Russian. And after seeing the joy on his aduna’s face Spock quickly amended his ‘males allowed to touch his aduna’ list to include both Mr. Chekov and Mr. Scott.

“Are ya sure that yer not having twins, lass?” Scotty asked with a smile after rounding the corner behind Chekov. “It’s only been two weeks since I last laid eyes upon you and…you have gotten HUGE!” he remarked in amazement, then looking up into Spock’s face he added quickly “But in a GOOD way, of course.”

“I am NOT having twins, Scotty.” Nyota replied with a laugh as Chekov released her and she opened her arms to Scotty for a hug which he timidly returned. “Just one HUGE Vulcan baby boy.”

“No doubt takin’ after his daddy.” Scotty replied letting go of her and smiling broadly at her. “And considerin’ that you look as if you are going to pop at any moment now, just when is the dear lad due?”

“The doctors want to see me back tomorrow afternoon, so soon I hope.” Nyota answered with a large smile for the Scotsman.

“That’s fantastic!’ Scotty exclaimed. “Jim Kirk is due back in tomorrow and Sulu this afternoon. I know for a fact that neither of them wanted to miss the birth of their nephew.”

Spock still did not understand the propensity for human males to adopt the title of ‘uncle’ even though they bore no familial relationship to the child in question. But given the closeness of the men to both himself and his aduna he found that he was not at all opposed to the idea of his child having more ‘uncles’ in his life.

Spock placed the gray box down on a table and proceeded to open the box.

“Will you look at that?” Scotty remarked as he peered into the box along with Chekov. “Tis the real thing, no doubt.”

“Mi-ster Spock” Chekov began “Thank you and your grandfather for bringing this to us. It will be a great addition to our historical exhibit.”

Spock nodded to the men as Nyota raised one eyebrow in curiosity. Spock had commed the men and requested that they refrain from relaying to Nyota that they first intended to study the memory core before placing it into their historical exhibit. And he had hoped that she would not ask any questions about their intentions now.

“Is there a sanitary facility in the lab or do I need to go back into the hallway?” she suddenly blurted out looking around somewhat desperately.

Spock was relieved but somehow not at all that surprised that this was his aduna’s question and he quickly led her towards the solitary sanitary facility in the lab as the door slid open to reveal a very small facility.

“I know that you are just trying to help, but his restroom is so small there really isn’t enough room for both of us to be in here at the same time.” She told him as she hurriedly entered the room.

Spock pulled back and allowed the door to slide between them with a soft hiss. Nyota’s grandfathers had been reminding him of late that he appeared to be suffering from separation anxiety when it came to leaving Nyota alone for any period of time. And as he began to note his elevated respiration and pulse rate he considered his elder clansmen’s observations.

After exactly 3.2 standard minutes Nyota appeared once again as the door slid open and she smiled up at him. “Miss me?” she teased him.

“I do admit that I find myself most anxious when you are out of my sight, beloved.” He responded in Vulcan “And I do apologize if I appear overbearing and controlling. It is not my intent.”

“I understand, mpenzi.” She replied smiling up at him. “I know you are just following your protective instincts. And I do love you.”

“As I you.” He replied reaching out to gently take her hand in his and lead her back to where Chekov and Scott stood.

“Mister Spock, Mister Chekov and I were wondering if you are willing to partake in an old earth tradition with us after the birth of your son?” Scotty asked as they walked up to meet them.

“And what tradition is that Mr. Scott?” Spock inquired.

“Mister Scott and I have purchased a box of fine Russian cigars to help celebrate the birth of your son.” Chekov added as Scotty looked over at him and shook his head in disbelief.

“You mean CUBAN cigars, Chekov.” Scotty corrected rolling his eyes towards the ceiling.

“Ah but it is well known that the Russians first taught the Cubans how to grow tobacco, Mis-ter Scott.” Chekov retorted with a grin.

Nyota chuckled. “What! No Scottish whiskey to go along with the cigars?” She teased the men, leaning further into Spock’s side as he turned his head to look down at her.

“Aye but the’l be thot too!” Scotty remarked happily confident.

“Although I must respectively decline on both accounts, I do however insist that you celebrate as my proxy.” Spock replied calmly as Nyota tucked her head into his bicep and giggled quietly.

“That’s the spirit, sir!” Scotty boisterously agreed. “We’ll celebrate in your honor, then.”

“We must now return home so that Nyota can rest.” Spock told the men releasing her hand and then wrapping his right arm securely around his aduna.

“Of course.” Scotty acknowledged. “We will let you know….I mean you will let us know when you go into labor.”

“Yes, Mr. Scott.” Spock replied quickly cutting his eyes downward to watch for Nyota’s reaction to accidental betrayal of information. “We will keep you informed as to the progress of her labor.”

With that said Spock pulled his wife closer into his side as they left the lab now bound for home.

 

It was exactly 2:41 AM the following morning when Spock awoke. Their son was now quite restless and he pressed his hand soothingly against Nyota’s abdomen seeking to calm his child. She had been asleep for 4.3 hours now having stayed up later than was her norm in order to converse with his father and grandmother who had arrived earlier in the afternoon. T’Pau’s presence was unexpected but most welcome following the cancellation of a council meeting on New Vulcan. Spock suspected that the birth of her first great-grandson played a pert in the abrupt cancellation of the meeting. Both Sarek and T’Pau had relayed to Nyota’s parents and grandparents stories of newborn traditions on Vulcan which had definitely captured Nyota’s interest and thus kept her awake long after her usual bedtime.

Suddenly Nyota awoke. “Spokh!” she called out as he quickly rose and moved around the bed offering her his hand to help her rise up from the bed.

He had grown quite used to these hurried trips to the sanitary facility during the middle of the night for the past month.

Suddenly she froze mid step looking down at her feet. “Oh no!” she called out to him as he stopped next to her and immediately looked down at her legs in order to ascertain the reason behind her sudden stop.

He could now see in the full moonlight of their bedroom that her thighs and legs were now glistening with moisture. She had no doubt been too late in rising up from their bed in order to relieve herself. However upon taking another breath he detected a sweet odor: definitely not the odor of urine that he had been expecting.

Their eyes met and understanding immediately passed between them. “Sorry I’m making a mess here but….” she began then suddenly her face contorted in pain. “Ow, dammit!”

Spock’s heart rate increased as he slowly led her into the sanitary facility the light turning on automatically for them. He immediately lowered her gently onto the padded seat of the toilet. “Your water has broken.” He acknowledged attempting to keep his voice calm and even. “I will make a note of the time and assist you in cleansing yourself. I will also note that the fluid is clear and sweet in odor.” She nodded at him wincing slightly as she attempted to settle more fully onto the seat. He immediately ran warm water into the sink as he pulled down two bath cloths and began to wet them.

“Oh well, I really did have to pee.” She told him finishing the sentence with another wince as she slumped down onto the seat.

He had felt her first contraction through their bond and he had already mentally taken note of the time and duration of the contraction. At least she would not have to record such data herself and he had hoped that the elimination of such record keeping duties would somehow relieve at least a portion of her stress given the situation.

He carefully helped her stand up and then gently used the wash cloths to cleanse her. He then led her to the chair in front of the sink and bade her sit while he cleaned the floor

“I am sorry to make you clean up after me, sweetheart.” She told him quietly as he continued to clean the floor.

As he walked back into the sanitary facility room to look down at her, her eyes still firmly focused on her abdomen. “You have born all of the hardships of carrying our son to term, my beloved.” He told her quietly. “This task is of no consequence in comparison to what you have done for our family.”

Spock turned back towards their bed and retrieved the medical monitor controller. He quickly pressed the activate key and watched as the device began to download Nyota’s biological data for transmission to the hospital. He then quickly made his way back to his aduna. He picked up a large towel tucking it quickly under his right arm. “Per your physicians’ instructions I believe that we are now to ‘cuddle’ at this juncture of your labor in order to insure that your body produces sufficient oxytocin levels which will aid in the dilation of your cervix.”

She slowly reached her hands out to him and smiled broadly up at him. “You sweet talker, you!” She teased him leaning heavily into him as he slowly pulled her to stand. “And cuddling sounds really good to me right about now, my stud muffin.”

Spock placed his left arm around her shoulders and led her back to their bed. He lay a towel down for her on the fitted sheet and then he slowly lowered her onto the bed. He quickly climbed into bed after her and wrapped his left arm snugly around her and their child. “Although I am in fact your ‘stud muffin’, I believe that my orders are to cuddle and nothing more my wife.” He teased her back leaning his head forward so that his forehead gently touched the back of her head.

“Then cuddling it is, my sexy husband.” She replied immediately followed by a long yawn.

Relaxing quickly into the bed, Nyota was asleep within seconds. And after 20 minutes 14 seconds Nyota began to experience a second contraction. Spock immediately took her left hand within his and applied pressure at the juncture between her left thumb and index finger. He could then feel the pain lessoning within their bond which confirmed to him that his pain management technique was successful. And he was quite relieved that his aduna continued to sleep through the contraction. He was certain that the additional rest would be invaluable to her in the later stages of the labor process.

He understood that the process of labor for first born children was the longest and he had readily committed himself to employ his pain management technique for the duration of all of her contractions. And he was most grateful that his Vulcan physiology would allow him to forego food and rest in order to care for Nyota in this manner.

 

“I will drive.” Murunga declared to the group being the first one out of the door followed swiftly by Spock as he led Nyota out of the house.

A chorus of emphatic “NOs” immediately reverberated into the cool morning air as Nyota’s family quickly emerged and gathered outside surrounding Murunga, Spock, and Nyota. Sarek, T’Pau, and Satuv swiftly followed Nyota’s family outside somewhat confused as to the current uproar from Nyota’s family.

Nyota laughed at the humorous reaction of her family in spite of the fact that she had just finished another contraction, this one carrying with it even more pain than the last one in spite of Spock’s pain management technique. But being ever the trained diplomat, she knew that she had to immediately take control of the situation. “Since Sarek’s transport is the ONLY one here capable of transporting ALL of us at one time, I suggest that Satuv pilot the craft since he is the one most familiar with the controls as well as the navigation of the complex morning rush hour traffic in San Francisco.”

Spock gently hugged her into his side. He was most pleased with his aduna’s suggestion as his greatest concern was for both her and his child’s safety. Given Spock’s personal knowledge of the piloting techniques of Murunga, Satuv would no doubt pilot the craft in a much safer fashion than Nyota’s grandfather. Spock was most grateful as Murunga slowly nodded his head in agreement.

They arrived at the hospital at 10:08 AM. During the 45 minute trip Spock had been focused entirely upon Nyota’s needs but he had managed to overhear Sarek tell Nyota’s family that the Grayson clan was now on their way to the hospital to join them. Spock was grateful that his father had contacted his mother’s family. It was important to both Nyota and himself that his mother’s family be there with them for the birth of Amanda’s first grandchild.

Nyota had requested a water birth and Spock dutifully sat behind her alternating between massaging Nyota’s back and applying gentle pressure to her neck, shoulders, and hands for pain management during her contractions. McCoy and T’Khaf along with two nurses stayed with them in the birthing room all of them purposefully surrounding the large tub as the minutes turned into hours. Spock was most grateful for their kind words of encouragement as Nyota’s labor progressed. And then, with a final yell, Nyota delivered S'chn T'gai Zuberi Roho Grayson into the universe. T’Khaf reached into the water and swiftly retrieved the newborn. The child let out one cry followed closely behind with a loud yawn as Nyota gently cradled the child upon her chest while talking to him softly in Swahili as her tears continued to roll slowly down her flushed cheeks. Spock marveled at his son’s calm demeanor after having just being born. Truly they had named their son well: ‘strong in spirit’ was an apt description for their first born.

Spock slowly reached around Nyota to stroke the child’s left cheek tenderly with the index finger on his right hand as he gently massaged Nyota’s abdomen with his left hand knowing that the kneading would help Nyota’s body expel the placenta. As Nyota helped position the child to nurse, Spock leaned down and around and kissed the child on the slicked down dark hair of his head. And so one of the greatest moments that he had looked forward to in his life had finally come to pass….he was a father now.

Once the placenta was expelled, Spock proudly assisted T’Khaf with cutting his son’s umbilical cord. McCoy then reached down to gently gather the still wet child up into a warm blanket.

“Here, let Uncle Len take a look at you, young un.” He told the infant as Zuberi opened his dark eyes to look up at the doctor. “Spock make yourself useful and help Nyota up out of the tub, clean her up, dry her off, and then get her into bed.

He obeyed McCoy’s orders without question. As he helped Nyota into the bed and pulled the covers up over her, McCoy walked up to him and handed him Zuberi. As he cradled the small child against his bare chest he felt the bond between them brighten. Zuberi looked up into his eyes and reached out with his hand to touch his chest and then reached out to touch his cheek. ‘Heart and soul’ he quickly echoed back to his son. Spock tenderly kissed the child once on the top of the now dry dark curls of his head and then gently lay the child within Nyota’s outstretched and welcoming arms.

“Now go on and get in bed with her Spock.” McCoy told him gently motioning with his right hand towards the bed.

As Spock gingerly climbed under the covers to join her, Nyota turned to him and smiled luminously at him her eyes wide with amazement still at having just given birth to their son. “Here Daddy, hold your son. He needs some more skin to skin time with you. I can’t keep him all to myself you know.”

And so five hours and twenty one minutes after they had entered the hospital’s doors, Spock once again cradled his son to his bare chest as Nyota lay back on the bed breathing out a long sigh of relief. After a few moments of rest, Nyota turned slowly to her side in order to better watch the two of them. Spock felt her eyes upon him but managed only a glance in her direction, not wishing to take his eyes from his son even for a second, but he had noticed that her smile grew even wider at his covetous action.

“He looks just like you, Spokh.” Nyota remarked smiling broadly through fresh tears as their son reached out with his tiny left hand to touch her nose before raising his small upswept right eyebrow at her in what appeared to be curiosity at hearing his mother’s voice.

“Well he is definitely his father’s child all right.” McCoy noted sarcastically as Nyota let out a laugh. The doctor slowly moved around the bed in order to check Nyota’s monitors once again before turning to look down at the newborn, a small smile lighting up his now beard-roughened face. “And as big as he is, the kid is bound to be hungry already.” He added looking over at T’Khaf who nodded in the affirmative to him.

“You should encourage the child to take nourishment.” T’Khaf suggested quietly walking over to stand at the foot of Nyota’s bed. “The suckling will encourage your breast milk to let down more rapidly. And in the meanwhile the colostrum that your breasts secrete will provide nourishment for the child until your breast milk is available for him.” With that the Vulcan physician turned and walked back to the examination table.

Spock slowly handed the child back to her and then immediately repositioned himself behind Nyota before leaning her and their son back into his chest as Nyota carefully guided a nipple under the infant’s nose. The child immediately opened his mouth rooting for the nipple before latching on. Nyota’s breath hitched causing Spock to lean over her right shoulder and watch both of them intently.

“Man, this kid has got quite the suction!” she remarked with raised eyebrows.

“Well he sure as hell didn’t get as big as he is by being bashful about eating.” McCoy told her with a small smile, doing his very best not to stare at Nyota’s exposed breasts. It had been quite a busy day for him and he really did not want it to end on a bad note by being beaten by a jealous Vulcan husband.

T’Khaf had completed the examination of Nyota’s placenta and walked back to stand next to McCoy but not before nodding at him in a silent communiqué.

McCoy smiled and nodded back to her in return “Well now, little mama. Your placenta checked out just fine and you checked out just fine too. But no comment on your still hyperventilating husband though.” McCoy added with a wink to her before moving to join T’Khaf at the foot of Nyota’s bed. “And I think that the three of you need a little quiet bonding time now. Doctor’s orders.” He then told them in a no-nonsense voice.

In response Spock moved even closer to Nyota and gently helped reposition her while placing his arms under hers to better support the still nursing child.

“Meanwhile T’Khaf and I get to play heroes and let the assembled multitudes outside in the waiting area know about your little bundle of joy here. Scotty promised me a Cuban cigar and a shot of 200 year old Scottish whiskey.” McCoy told them as the nurses left the room. “Oh and we promise to keep the crowd at bay until you get a little shut eye, darlin’.”

Spock looked up and immediately bowed his head in respect to both physicians. “Our family offers our gratitude to you both for all that you have done to ensure the health of both Nyota and our son.”

T’Khaf looked over at McCoy who nodded slightly back at her as she raised her right hand in the ta’al. “We accept your words of gratitude but acknowledge that Dr. McCoy and myself played only a small role in the successful completion of your pregnancy.” She replied nodding to Spock and Nyota in turn. “You all now require rest at this juncture. We wish your family peace and long life.

 

It was four hours thirty-six minutes later when Spock opened his eyes and watched as McCoy slowly and quietly walked into the their darkened room. The baby was asleep in Nyota’s arms and she too was sound asleep leaving Spock to meditate upon recent events while maintaining vigilance over his family

Prior to his meditation, Spock had successfully changed his son’s diaper four times now with the help of Nyota’s mother who had somehow managed to work her way past both McCoy and T’Khaf. Spock was most grateful that their son’s appetite was quite good and the child had nursed four times each time longer than the last. Nyota had also taken nourishment which had also pleased him greatly.

“I know that you don’t want to leave Nyota and your son, Spock, but you really need to come with me right now.” McCoy whispered, his face taking on the appearance of urgency.

Spock knew McCoy well enough to know that the physician would not ask for a familial separation unless it was indeed warranted. Spock carefully and quietly he disengaged himself from Nyota, climbed out of bed, and followed McCoy out of their room. Spock was quite confident that Nyota was already competent to care for their son on her own but he still preferred not to leave his family’s side for too long of a period. Nyota’s mother suddenly appeared outside the doorway and nodded to Spock providing him with a sense of relief knowing that his wife and child were in good hands now.

“What is this concerning?” he quietly questioned as McCoy led him to a turbolift and the doors silently slid close behind them as McCoy pressed the button directing them to the Intensive Care Unit.

“Has someone been injured?” Spock questioned as the turbolift began to move quickly upwards.

McCoy turned to look at him, his face betraying the emotions now flowing through his body. “Chekov and Scotty were able to regenerate those transporter signals from the memory core that you gave them.” He began, his eyes shining now as he blinked several times in succession. “Using Chekov’s experimental equipment, we have now recovered 11 crew members, eight of whom are being treated as patients as the trauma teams work to mend their various injuries sustained prior to being beamed out. The other three crew members are in comas, and we are doing our best in trying to figure out why they won’t regain consciousness.”

The doors to the turbolift opened and McCoy swiftly walked out into the ICU hallway with Spock following closely behind him.

“And the twelfth crewmember?” Spock questioned as McCoy paused in front of an ICU room.

McCoy turned quickly back to him and reached out with his right hand to place it upon Spock’s left shoulder squeezing gently as he did so. “Not a crewmember.” McCoy responded softly.

Spock felt his heart literally skip a beat at that moment as the door slid silently open for them to enter. As he walked into the room he saw Kirk, Mr. Scott, and Mr. Chekov standing to the right of the biobed and his father along with T’Pau seated next to the left side of the biobed. Spock’s eyes then fell upon the women now laying in the biobed and he felt his heart once again skip a beat. As Kirk stepped back away from the biobed to make room for him, Spock quickly made his way to the biobed and looked down upon his mother’s face. Save for superficial scratches and bruising, she looked just the way she had looked before…before he had lost her years ago during the destruction of Vulcan. He slowly reached out to tenderly touch her cheek with the index finger of his left hand noting that her skin was cool to the touch….just as he had remembered.

Except for the automated sounds of the medical equipment in the room, the room was now silent. No words could describe what Spock was feeling at the moment. He slowly became aware of the family bond opening up to him and he could now feel his father’s emotions. wonderment, hope, and LOVE. As Spock focused on his mother’s face he could now hear her shallow breaths. And as he too began to consciously breathe once again, he was suddenly in absolute awe that he could actually feel his mother’s slow but steady heartbeat echoing in his head as their family bond opened up even further to him.

“We have repaired all of the deep tissue bruising as well as 3 broken ribs and a collapsed right lung.” McCoy informed him quietly, hesitating slightly before continuing. “Spock we don’t know yet just how long she will be comatose because there is no medical reason that we can find that explains her lack of consciousness.” McCoy explained walking over to stand next to him as Kirk moved to stand on the other side of him. “Two of the crew that are in comas are now showing signs of waking up, but we can’t be sure of just what their condition will be once they regain consciousness. We just have to wait and….hope for the best.”

“Understood.” Was the only word that Spock allowed to pass his lips, his eyes still locked upon his mother’s face.

 

The next 12 hours passed by slowly as if time had somehow been altered, as illogical as this notion sounded. And as Spock watched the 45th member of their collective familes reluctantly leave their room after holding their newborn son, Spock had been most grateful for the excellent functioning of the decontamination unit in their room. He wished to ensure that their son remained healthy as their family came in to congratulate them as well as hold the newest member of their family. Nyota had repeatedly accused him of being a ‘germophobe’, a term that she still refused to define for him, assuring him that both their son and herself were healthy and would remain so.

Nyota was recovering steadily and quickly adapting to their son’s seemingly unceasing requests for nourishment. Spock had been kept quite busy changing out diapers for the child and learning how to bathe the child properly. Spock was grateful for his parental duties as they tended to keep his mind focused on caring for their new son and not on the unchanging condition of his mother.

Amanda’s condition explained much as to why their family bond had not splintered when they ‘lost’ her on Vulcan. The deaths of bonded family members on Vulcan had emotionally shattered their bondmates who were off planet, many of them driven to take their own lives in the aftermath of Vulcan’s destruction. And since there was no doubt that Amanda had been emotionally and spiritually tied to the S'chn T'gai clan, her loss from the family bond should have caused physically as well as emotionally strong reactions from those remaining clan members.

True it was that Amanda was mourned and grieved for by many, and especially by Sarek, Spock, T’Pau, as well as Nyota. But the expected physical pain associated with such a loss had not been felt through the family bond. Nor were the emotional depressive/suicidal thoughts that normally would accompany the intense physical pain in Vulcans. Even T’Pau, the clan’s spiritual leader, could not explain the prevailing sense of loss without the sense of death that one would expect when reaching out along their bond to ‘search’ for Amanda. And in the years that passed since the destruction of Vulcan, this particular ‘sense’ of loss about Amanda had remained firmly within the family bond.

And now they all knew why.

Although he was certain that his aduna knew more than she let on, he was still unwilling to keep something so important from her once he returned from ICU. So as their son slept peacefully between them in bed Spock relayed the news concerning the recovery of his mother as well as the 11 crewmembers. Nyota was overjoyed to hear about the crewmembers and of course very upbeat and supportive of the recovery of his mother.

Within three hours and 19 minutes after Spock returned from ICU the first time, the three comatose crewmembers had all regained consciousness, thankfully without any adverse effects. McCoy was still hesitant to rule out a full recovery for Amanda, but with every passing hour of unconsciousness the medical likelihood of a full recover began to diminish.

Sarek had remained constantly at Amanda’s side refusing both food and drink as he clasped Amanda’s right hand within his left one. T’Pau had called in two well known Vulcan healers who were in San Francisco at a medical conference to assist the Starfleet physicians in reviving Amanda but they too had failed to bring her back to consciousness. And after 24 hours Sarek was still unwavering in his belief that Amanda would regain consciousness. He had still not let go of her hand and no amount of convincing would result in him leaving his aduna. T’Pau too remained committed to the logical progression of Amanda’s condition resulting in a full recovery but had finally succumb to fatigue and had allow Satuv to lead her out of ICU and into a private room for meditation and rest.

But as the hours continued to pass with no change in Amanda’s condition, Spock reasoned that his mother’s chances at full recovery were growing dimmer the longer she stayed within the coma. And to lose his mother again he feared would be too much for his father…and perhaps for himself also. He focused even more intently on the care of his son and his wife as he tried his best to shield his trepidations from Nyota, but Nyota could read his body language sometimes even better than his thoughts at times.

“We will find a way to bring her back to us.” Nyota had told him repeatedly.

Spock wanted so very much to believe her.

 

Amanda’s family had been taking turns sitting on the other side of Amanda’s biobed from Sarek and holding onto her left hand as the hours continued to pass. Tests continued to be run and additional physicians were assigned to her care.

And now 30.8 hours after entering into the hospital, Ishi walked into their room once again to check on them. All of Nyota’s family had taken turns helping the new parents adjust to having a newborn. But in particular Nyota’s maternal grandmother had been a source of strength for Spock as the hours slipped by and his mother’s condition still did not improve. Ishi had offered many words of encouragement to him.

Both Spock and Nyota had agreed ten hours ago not to leave the hospital without Amanda.

“We are somehow overlooking an important detail in your mother’s recovery, Spock.” Ishi told them as she reached out to take the sleeping infant from Spock’s arms and began to rock the sleeping child gently in her arms.

Suddenly Nyota sat straight up in bed. “My dream!” She suddenly interrupted their conversation with both finality and force as they turned in unison to look at her. “I have had the same dream about Amanda over and over again for years starting with the night that I spent in Spock’s biobed after his battle with Khan.” She continued as she pushed off her covers and quickly got to her feet.

Spock swiftly walked around the biobed and helped her put on her robe as well as her slippers. “I KNOW what to do now.” She said emphatically looking up at Spock. “Spock you carry Zuberi for me. The four of us need to go see your mother right now!”

 

Suddenly she was aware of the warmth against her chest. In her dream she was sitting with her grandchildren and holding them in her lap one by one as she tickled them their sound filling her with joy. She had always found solace and safety in her continuing dreams about her family. Even though she was quite happy and content within this dream, suddenly she could sense a difference in this dream now. Something inside of her prompted her to take a deep breath and she swore that she could now smell the distinctive odor of a newborn. The warm weight and pressure against her chest too seemed different now.

She breathed in once again, this time more deeply and found that the newborn scent had grown even stronger. She now felt the warm weight on her chest begin to move. And quite dimly she began to hear voices interweaving between the voices of her grandchildren who continued to speak to her within her dream. Her curiosity now peaked, she was suddenly torn between remaining in her dream world and finding the source of the smell and warm weight which had begun to move even more.

And then without warning she felt a small finger clumsily prod her cheek as if demanding her immediate attention. She had to make a decision now: remain safe within her dreams or follow her sense of curiosity.

Slowly she opened her eyes and focused them on the source of the sensation against her cheek. To her delight she found the most beautiful baby she had ever seen in her life propped up against her chest with a pillow staring up at her with gorgeous, large dark eyes. She innately knew that this was the baby that she had longed for…. had dreamed about in the past. Suddenly the baby’s finger reached up to gently rub at her nose. As she began to take in the details of the baby’s face she noticed the dark complexion, the upswept eyebrows, and a set of small perfectly pointed ears. So if this was the beginning of another wonderful dream then she was determined to make the most of it. She slowly began to close her eyes once again willing herself to fall fully back into her NEW dream.

“Amanda!” Sarek’s voice called out to her. She quickly opened her eyes and his face suddenly loomed into her view just behind and above the baby’s face.

She knew well the face which belonged to her husband, but somehow his face had changed slightly from when she remembered seeing him last. He looked older than she remembered, and he also looked very….worried. Strange but this had never happened in her dreams before.

“Amanda.” He called her name out again this time slightly softer, his expression slowly changing from worried to expectant.

She slowly became aware of his hand around hers, the heat from his hand quite noticeable against her cooler flesh. She suddenly remembered back to when he had held her hand last. It was to help her onto his hoverbike just before…before….she tried but she couldn’t quite remember just why they were traveling on his hoverbike in such a frantic hurry.

“Amanda.” He called out her name a third time his gaze changing once again and this time she could both feel and see the love emanating from her husband. The fingers on his right hand slowly and tenderly skimmed over the dark wavy hairs on the baby’s head. “This is our first born grandchild, S'chn T'gai Zuberi Roho Grayson.” He informed her quietly.

As if on cue, the child laying against her chest prodded her check once more.

Amanda lowered her eyes from Sarek to stare into the beautiful dark eyes of the infant once again. And as the child lay his head down on her chest she finally realized that she was no longer in her dream world but once again firmly planted in the universe with her family. She could now feel her left hand being surrounded in warmth and squeezed tenderly. She turned her head slowly to the left and looked down onto her hand and found it enveloped within a slim, mahogany hand, which was also encased within a large pale hand, the small scar across the middle knuckle so familiar to her.

“Ko-mekh.” Spock quietly called out to her as she tilted her head upwards the source of the sound noting that her son too had changed. He seemed taller, more broad shouldered….matured.

Feeling another squeeze upon her hand, Amanda’s eyes then traveled back down to find her son’s betroved staring at her in amazement, her gorgeous dark mahogany eyes filled with tears of ……joy as she smiled down at her, her face aglow with such happiness. Amanda noticed that Nyota too had matured and her beauty had been magnified some twenty-fold. She now bore the look of a satisfied woman…..and quite obviously a new mother now

“Ko-mekh!” Nyota exclaimed squeezing her hand tenderly again.

Amanda finally found her voice trying her best to keep her own tears at bay now. “I had always dreamed that you two would have beautiful babies together.” She quietly told them as Nyota’s smile widened even further and the young woman’s tears fell even faster. “I am just so sorry that I missed your wedding.”

McCoy who had entered the room earlier in response to Amanda’s changed medical sensor readings stepped up to stand next to Nyota. “Well ma’am, I was there when they got hitched, but I don’t think you could really call what happened between these two a REAL wedding.” He told Amanda with a wink followed quickly with a smile as he nodded towards Nyota and Spock.

“Oh really?” Amanda replied immediately sensing humor in the untold story from the doctor.

“Oh YEAH, Mrs. Sarek.” McCoy affirmed his eyes narrowing at her in mock seriousness “Just let me tell you….”

“Oh no you don’t! Let ME tell the story.” Nyota interrupted the Doctor and taking full control of the conversation as she reached up to brush away the tears from her eyes and cheeks, the smile never leaving her face. “We were on board Starbase Yorktown…” and she began to tell the story of their life-saving and quite impromptu Vulcan marriage bonding ceremony aboard the Yorktown to Amanda in great detail, providing both her own voice as well as the imitated voices of every one else involved in the story, including McCoy’s, much to the Doctor’s disdain.

Amanda’s face wore a smile from ear to ear as she listened intently to her new daughter retell the complicated story, interjecting her own well humored comments from time to time. The room began to be filled with laughter and even a few tears as the Nyota mesmerized the group with the details of their ‘wedding day;. Spock was most grateful that Nyota left out the more intimate details of the story knowing that Dr. McCoy would never pass up an opportunity to unmercifully tease him with such knowledge. McCoy did however manage to add to the story doing his very best to embarrass Spock wherever and whenever possible. But then Spock expected no less from the physician.

And as Nyota continued to pull the story towards its conclusion, Spock reached out with his left hand to tenderly stroke his son’s hair enjoying the warmth and softness of their son as the baby slowly closed his eyes and began to sleep soundly his head propped up upon his grandmother’s chest.

Spock was suddenly reminded of a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson: ‘What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us. And when we bring what is within us out into the world, miracles happen.’

Spock couldn’t agree more.