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Subjective Assessment

Chapter Text

“It’s not going to bite you,” Jim cajoled.

Senik stared at the glove as if he was analyzing a complex math equation.  “I am aware this is manufactured recreational equipment and not capable of mastication.  I do not understand its purpose.”

“You catch the ball with it,” Jim said.  “Are you left or right handed?”

“As well as being perfectly symmetrical, Vulcans are ambidextrous,” Senik replied.

Jim rolled his eyes.  “Good.  Well, I need the left handed mitt, so you can take the right handed one.  Just slip it on, and hold it up.”  Senik complied and watched as Jim backed up a few meters and engaged a the portable batting cage forcefield around them.  “Just keep your eye on the ball,” Jim instructed and threw the ball in a gentle motion toward Senik, which ended up hitting the boy in the shoulder.

Senik stared at Jim, not bothering to pick up the ball by his feet.

“Why didn’t you catch it?” Jim asked.

“Your instructions where to watch the ball.  I was unaware of any additional rules to this game.”

Jim looked over to where Spock was lounging under a tree, observing the entire exchange.  Lounging was a bad word, as Jim’d never seen someone look so stiff sitting in the grass in the shade.  “Care to join us?” Jim asked, still annoyed that Spock had assured him that the group outing was a good idea, and promptly abandoned Jim to try to teach Senik something about Terran recreation.

Spock unfolded his long legs and stood obligingly.  “Perhaps Senik would be more comfortable with learning how to use a bat.”

Jim eyebrows shot up.  “Are you volunteering?”  Spock merely nodded.

Senik glanced at the sports equipment bag that Jim had brought with him to the park.  “I was not aware that animals were involved in baseball.”

Jim smiled.  “Bat like a baton,” he explained and opened up the case and pulled out a wooden baseball bat and offered it to Spock.  He expertly grasped the base and demonstrated a swing in the air.

“It is a matter of simple physics,” Spock said to Senik.  Jim watched, wary of Spock’s knowledge of baseball.  Jim pitched Spock a slow ball and the Vulcan easily hit it high into the forcefield behind Jim.  Senik nodded thoughtfully and took the offered bat from Spock, who then retreated to stand next to Jim.

“I spent a semester at an Earth middle school during my father’s diplomatic mission on Earth.  Physical education was compulsory,” Spock said before Jim could ask.

“Is there anything you aren’t good at?” Jim asked wryly.

“Painting,” Spock admitted.  “Most forms of dance.”

“Great, we’ll do that on the next outing.  I can’t have Senik thinking that you are the best at everything,” Jim declared.  He pitched another slow ball to Senik and had to duck when the ball went speeding toward his head.

“Hey!” he shouted when the ball whizzed past his right ear.  “Watch it, you aren’t supposed to be aiming for me.”

Senik blinked in confusion.  “Cadet Kirk, you were aiming for me during our last training exercise, so I had assumed the rules were similar.”

Jim sighed then smiled.  He doubted that baseball would ever been the next great Vulcan past time.