“Emotionless Vulcan? Don’t make me laugh,” the Shadow sneered. It looked like Spock, but its eyes were a deadened yellow and it wore an unhappy grin that had never graced the half-Vulan’s face. “Remember last time someone threatened your precious captain? Didn’t it make you angry?”
“Don’t let him get to you,” Kirk called out to the subject of the Shadow’s tirade.
“Your concern is unnecessary,” Spock answered, apparently unperturbed. “I am aware that this creature’s claims have no basis in fact.”
“You still deny it, huh? So much for truth, you can’t even be honest to yourself. I can’t believe Jim even pretends to trust you. You know deep inside that you’re just a half-breed with all those nasty human emotions; anger, fear, sadness, happiness, love, lust,” the Shadow said with vindictive pleasure, and licked its lips for emphasis. “No wonder you never made it on Vulcan and had to take refuge among all these emotional humans.”
Spock stiffened almost imperceptibly as the Shadow spoke, but his voice remained inhumanly level, “I cannot understand what basis you believe to have for these illogical claims. What is your intention?”
The Shadow cackled. “Don’t you get it? I know all about your illogic because I am you!”
Kirk only got as far as, “Don’t!” But he was too late.
“Unsuccessfully imitating my appearance does not enable you to share in my identity. You are plainly not Vulcan,” Spock said with some disdain, “What are you, exactly?”
“I told you,” the Shadow said with glee, “I am you! ”
It’s cruel laugh turned into a fearsome roar as the Shadow transformed into a horrible beast, ruled by its passions. It charged at Spock, but Kirk and Dr. McCoy defended him and beat it back with their Personas. Spock felt each blow as though he was in the monster’s place.
“Are you okay?” Kirk asked urgently. He easily saw past Spock’s stoic facade.
Spock gave a sharp nod. “It appears the monster has induced a psychic link between us, such that I experience pain when it does, but there is no cause for concern. Vulcans have much higher tolerance for pain than humans.”
“But you’re not a Vulcan,” the Shadow taunted, “You’re half-human! You only have half the pain tolerance of a Vulcan.”
Kirk wanted to protest, but the monster interrupted with a cackle and a blow that they only narrowly avoided. Together, Kirk and Dr. McCoy barely managed to beat the monster back. They were battered and bruised by the time they subdued the Shadow and forced it back into its humanoid form.
It was pathetic. “I just want to be accepted,” it whined. It wore Spock’s face like an ill-fitting mask.
“I fail to see the similarity between myself and this creature,” Spock said.
“You still deny me?” A malicious spark returned to the Shadow’s eyes.
Before Kirk and Dr. McCoy could protest, Spock assented, “Of course. It would be illogical to acknowledge such an obvious falsehood.”
The Shadow cackled and transformed again into a fearsome beast. Again Kirk and Dr. McCoy fought it back. Again Spock denied it.
“You just have to accept it,” Dr. McCoy insisted to no avail.
Again and again, they fought the beast.
Then, the monster knocked Kirk aside with a powerful blow and readied to pounce and finish him off.
“Jim! ” Spock cried out and ran between Kirk and the monster as though he intended to block it with his puny form alone.
“Just acknowledge it already, damn it, and then we wouldn’t have to keep fighting it,” Dr. McCoy shouted at him as he tried to distract the beast with his Persona.
“It is not true,” Spock insisted, “It is illogical to acknowledge a lie.” He did not look away from the monster.
“It’s the only way,” Kirk croaked. He attempted a weak smile, but speaking took most of what little strength he had left. He remained on the ground, already past his limits.
Spock warred within himself. He could not, would not acknowledge these lies , but it was only logical to do anything he could to defend the captain.
The monster was ready to strike.
“I do not deny that I am half-Vulcan and half-human,” Spock said, at last.
The monster froze and stared at him with wide eyes.
That was easy enough. Spock took a deep breath and let it out. He at once remembered his training and prepared to fight it. “I do not deny that I experience human emotions,” he forced the words out.
The monster shuddered and gave way to a humanoid once more.
“Now was that so hard?” Dr. McCoy exclaimed in perpetual irritation.
Spock faced his Shadow. In defeat, it reminded him of a lonely boy on Vulcan many years ago.