McCoy tugged his jacket tighter around him. He couldn't believe last week it had still been warm and sunny and this week a wind was blowing off the bay and there was a crispness to the air that wasn't there before. Autumn had arrived and with a vengeance it seemed. It even smelled like fall. There was one thing he missed being in California as opposed to Georgia and that was leaves changing color. And he didn't mean the decorative trees around campus. He meant whole forests a blaze with red oranges and yellows.
While he'd always liked summer, he was happy to see it end because with summer gone, classes were back in session and it meant he only had work around class schedules and not have to go weeks without being able to see Chris. Of course this past week events had been conspiring to keep them apart between his schedule and Chris's. And now this bloody party on a night when he could have spent it with Chris, curled up in bed together.
Jim interrupted his thoughts with a question. "Bones, how did you get an invite to this party?"
"Jim, I do have a medical degree and research to my name," McCoy answered, shaking his head at Jim's questioning. Sometimes he really had to wonder about Jim's genius level
"Yes, but you are still a cadet."
"And I am still a doctor," he repeated. Besides the fact he'd spent two weeks on a World Health Organization science vessel, he really didn't want to get into just else why he could have been invited to Admiralty House for the reception welcoming the representative for the World Health Organization. "Did you forget where I spent part of my summer?" he finally said hoping that sparking Jim's memory would get him out of explaining anything else. Like how else he knew some of the attendees. At least not right now. He had a feeling that after the party he and Jim would be having a conversation he wasn't sure he was ready to have with his best friend. He was also going to have to comm Chris and warn him he was probably going to have to tell Jim about them because there was no telling what he'd overhear tonight.
Speaking of Pike, Jim was surprised to see the captain at a party full of medical types. Leaning back against the bar with a beer in his hand, Jim was set to have some fun watching Bones and Pike try not to give their relationship away. While he stood in his prime place to watch, he also learned a lot from the "widows" of medical conversations. Things like when Pike and Bones actually got together, which surprised him they have kept it so well hidden for so long. And according to Admiral Beckett's wife they are extremely cute together. Although he wasn't sure he really needed that piece of information. He couldn't imagine Bones being cute let alone Pike.
He caught a passing touch, subtle, yet intimate as Pike walked up to Bones in a conversation and then excused himself with Dr Boyce following. Anyone not looking wouldn't have noticed the intimacy but knowing what he knew, it was obvious to him.
"Kirk. I didn't expect McCoy to bring you along," Captain Pike said as he joined him at the bar.
"Yes sir. He considers it payback for all the command or engineering things I drag him to," Jim explained. "What about you sir, this isn't your normal type of function?"
"No, but Phil, Dr Boyce, thought I needed to be here to gain a better understanding of what goes on in sickbay and with new medical research."
Jim laughed. He really wanted to comment about how it was a great cover story but he wasn't ready to let them in on the fact he knew about him and Bones just yet. He was having too much fun watching them and his fun was about to increase as he saw Bones headed their direction.
"Jim. Captain Pike. I'm surprised to see you here," McCoy said as he walked up to them. "Jim, please tell me you're being good and not unraveling any health charters or anything."
"He's been a perfect gentleman."
"That's almost as scary," McCoy commented causing everyone to laugh.
"Bones! I'm insulted," he tried to protest but ended up laughing just as hard as the rest of them
"I need a drink. I like Dr Benyu, but her colleges are giving me a headache."
"Here," Pike said putting a glass of bourbon, neat, into Bone's hands. The fact that Pike not only knew but ordered Bone's drink had him smiling even more.
"Dr McCoy," I'd like to introduce you to someone. Come along to Captain Pike. I think you might find his partner very interesting as well.
Jim watched as both men shrugged and followed one of the guests of honor through the crowd and sufficiently ending his fun.
"I needed a break from all of them. I like talking medicine with people but not like this," Len grumbled.
Chris walked up as close to Len and stood shoulder to shoulder with him. It was the best he could do but it wasn't enough as what he really wanted was to wrap his arms around his lover. Setting his hand down next to Len's on the wooden railing he twined their finger together.
"Can I leave yet?" Len complained.
"There is only another hour left of the party and then we can both go," Chris attempted to placate his increasingly irritable lover.
"You don't have to be here. You could go."
"And leave everyone at your mercy after I go? Not a chance," Chris teased which got a passing chuckle out of Len.
"Dammit. I hate this."
Chris knew there was nothing he could do to sooth that complaint. It wasn't about the party. It was more about them hiding how they felt about each other and the decorum that must be followed since they were still technically a student and instructor at Star Fleet Academy. He was fairly certain the fall out of their discovery wouldn't be horrible especially with the friends they had that knew about them, but those were friendships he didn't want to put to the test. Not yet. And not unless it was absolutely necessary. "I know," he finally said, pushing against Len's shoulder. "I do to."
"You two seriously need to get a room."
Chris and Len both spun around.
"Kirk," Chris growled.
"Relax," Jim said. "I've known about the two of you for months now."
"I'm going to kill you," Len muttered.
"The thing with Jo?" Chris asked wondering if that was when Kirk found out about them.
"No. Before," he answered. "But Dr Boyce and Admiral Beckett confirmed it thinking I knew about you guys."
"I'm not sure I even want to know how you figured it out," Len commented with a laugh.
"And here I thought you'd snuck away."
"Is this a conspiracy?" Len muttered.
"Phil," Chris greeted the new comer to their group.
"Chris. McCoy," he greeted with a smile. "Come on Kirk, let's go make a few more rounds and let these two make a stealthful escape s they have been wanting to do since they got here."
Chris laughed, looks like they had another known ally working in their corner. Turning to Len, he held out his hand, "You heard them. Let's go." If they had the chance to escape, he was going to take it. He wanted to take Len home and to bed. There was nothing better than lying in bed, Len curled in his arms, and the windows thrown open to let the cold fall air in while they made love.