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"Next time we stop at a Federation outpost, I'm picking up a crate of those new Rigelian-made condoms and hand-delivering them to your room," Leonard growled under his breath.

"I use condoms," Jim protested.

"Not very well," Leonard said. "Or you wouldn't be in here for the second time this month getting treated for another disgusting disease."

"Hey, how was I supposed to know that her species has barbs everywhere? I wasn't exactly expecting the condom to be ripped to shreds by her own...hoo-hah."

Leonard flinched and kept his hand from going reflexively to protect his genitals by sheer force of will, too horrified to comment on Jim's vocabulary. "She what?"

Jim squinted at him. "I thought you knew that. Aren't you supposed to be trained in this?"

"There are over two hundred known humanoid species, with more being encountered all the time," Leonard said. "Three years at Starfleet Academy isn't enough time to give you an exhaustive education in the anatomy of every alien race in the galaxy."

"Oh. Well, that's why the condom broke. Not my fault."

"Damnit, Jim, are you telling me that you have lacerations on your penis that you've neglected to mention?"

Jim grinned carelessly. "Nah. The barbs were tiny." He held his thumb and forefinger a millimeter apart in demonstration. "I barely even felt them through the condom."

"The condom which got ripped to shreds?" Leonard asked, unimpressed. "Take your pants off."

"Bones. I swear to you, my dick is undamaged."

"I'm gonna want to take a look at those sores you found, anyway."

Jim rolled his eyes, but stripped off his trousers and underwear and hopped up onto the sickbay bed, lying down and propping his legs up with the ease of long practice.

Leonard pulled on a pair of gloves and stepped closer. The sores were there at the base of Jim's penis, just as he'd reported, and had the unmistakable purplish-blue perimeter of Coridanian herpes. They were still in the first stage--soft pustules not yet beginning to encrust--so there was no danger of the vaccine inducing paralysis, as it did sometimes when the virus had begun to retreat to the spinal column. Leonard doublechecked the tricorder readings to make sure that there was nothing else untoward floating around in Jim's bloodstream. The Coridanian herpes looked like the only intruder, so he muttered, "Hold still," and slapped a hypospray against Jim's neck.


"Stop getting diseased, and I'll stop hurting you," Leonard said wryly.

Jim snorted. "Nice bedside manner. Is that what you tell all your patients?"

"Most of my patients try a little harder to avoid getting sick or injured than you do. Anyway, the asclevir should take care of your STI. Which, by the way, has some very nasty effects in the later stages and is highly resistant to treatment if you don't catch it early; I'll tell you all about it over dinner. Let me know if the sores don't go away within two days or if you notice any other symptoms."

The most pressing medical concern dealt with, Leonard turned his attention to Jim's penis. It was redder than usual--though that might be due to the Coridanian herpes--and there was a narrow scratch on one side. He lifted it to look underneath and discovered three more scratches. He didn't even want to think what they'd looked like when they were fresher. There was no sign of infection, though, which had been his main worry. "And your penis looks as though it hasn't sustained any permanent damage. You can put your clothes back on."

Jim smiled in response as he hopped off the bed to dress, and Leonard's voice sharpened as he continued, "But the next time this happens--and, God knows, I've given up hope that there won't be a next time--I want you in sickbay five seconds after you've told her, 'Thanks for the pleasant evening.' The fact that these scratches didn't develop a secondary infection is just dumb luck. Not to mention that any time your condom breaks is a potential problem, but having it happen when you've got open wounds on your penis is just an invitation for disaster."

"Fine, fine," Jim said, waving his hand in a 'get on with it' gesture.

Leonard shook his head and grumbled, "Seriously, Rigelian condoms. Triple layer construction, each layer separated by medicinal-grade silicone, and pre-lubricated with an anti-viral solution."

"Sounds like wearing a tank," Jim said.

"Exactly," Leonard said, smiling grimly. "Just what the doctor ordered."

Jim was in the middle of what looked like a spirited discussion with Spock; Leonard couldn't hear them over the noise of the mess hall, but Jim's hands gestured in fluent illustration of whatever point he was making. Spock was watching him coolly and responding at even intervals.

There was something interesting in the movement of Jim's hands, and Leonard ate half of his tuna salad sandwich before he realized what his subconscious had already noted: Jim was restraining himself from touching Spock. Every thirty seconds or so he'd make a gesture that he checked midway, pulling back from Spock's hand or arm before he could make contact.

It was surprisingly considerate of him. Leonard had gotten used to being manhandled by Jim--and returning the favor when appropriate--but, then, he wasn't a touch-telepath.

Jim's and Spock's conversation wound down just as Leonard was crunching his way through a dill pickle. Now that he was looking for it, it felt strange to see Jim say his goodbyes without his habitual clap on the shoulder or pat on the back. Jim grinned easily at Spock as he rose to his feet, though, and Spock nodded his own farewell with what passed for friendliness in a Vulcan.

"Where's Jim?" Leonard demanded when Spock, Chekov, and Reyes materialized in the transporter room without their captain.

Spock raised an eyebrow at the abrupt greeting. "Captain Kirk elected to remain on the surface for the evening."

"There was a woman," Chekov interjected, more helpfully. "A very pretty woman. I did not catch her name."

"I suspect the captain did not, either," Spock said, in the tone of voice that Leonard still couldn't parse as either disapproving or deadpan.

In other circumstances, he might have been curious which it was, but today he was more concerned with the fact that: "He did this on purpose. That bastard knew I was going to make him come into sickbay for his physical, and now he's hiding on Daliwakos III."

He'd finally, after several months' concerted effort in the early stages of their friendship, convinced Jim that it was better to get his injuries and ailments taken care of quickly and professionally than to risk a longer recovery period by leaving them untreated. The need for a biannual physical had been a harder sell.

"She was a very pretty woman," Chekov said dubiously. "I do not think the captain needed further excuse."

Which was likely the truth, but Leonard wasn't exactly in a reasonable mood. "How long before we leave?" he asked.

"Lieutenant Scott estimates it will take another two hours to complete the necessary repairs to the plasma intercooler," Spock said.

Two hours that Jim would undoubtedly spend with his Daliwakan beauty. Leonard had gathered that Jim Kirk was a cuddler, shocking as the information was, and that the vast majority of the beds he shared had little Jim-shaped impressions in the mattress by the following morning.

"Mr. Spock, if you could inform me when the captain returns to the ship, I'd appreciate it."

Spock nodded readily. "Of course, Doctor."

"Thanks." That would save Leonard from having to haunt the transporter room, even if it meant administering Jim's physical at an hour when he ought by all rights to be sound asleep.

He shook his head as he left the transporter room. Maybe if slutting around the galaxy looked as though it were making Jim happy, Leonard wouldn't be quite so disgruntled by it, improbable as that sentiment might sound coming from the man who had made a part-time career of making sure that Jim Kirk's sex life didn't end up being the death of him.

But, for all Jim's obvious enthusiasm for getting laid, in practice he was probably among the most celibate members of the Enterprise crew. He was apparently sticking to his guns over not sleeping with any of the crew--a decision that Leonard considered faintly noble but misguided--and the ship didn't make contact with inhabited planets or space stations more than a few times a month. Great for variety and the threat of danger in your sexual encounters; terrible for their regularity. Considering Jim's habits at the Academy, his new position of restraint had to be wearing on him nearly as much as all of the other stresses of his job combined.

"What the hell?" Jim asked, staring downwards.

"Got you a present," Leonard said. "--You planning to invite me in anytime soon?"

Jim stepped aside to let him into his quarters. "You know, I'm more of a dog person," he said.

"When you figure out how to train a dog to use a litter box, let me know. In the meantime, this is the best I can do."

"Bones. Why are you giving me a cat?"

Leonard shrugged and took a seat without being invited. He balanced the calico kitten in his lap and stroked her fur. "Thought you could use the company."

Jim sat across from him. "I live in close quarters with several hundred people. I'm pretty sure I have all the company I need."

The kitten felt like an incredible mixture of softness and sharpness, powderpuff fur stretched over thin bones. Leonard kept his touch light even as he explored her minute skeleton with his fingers. "If you don't want her, just say so. Sulu's already offered to take her if you won't."

Jim looked at the kitten again and sighed audibly. "Let me see her."

Leonard passed her over, and Jim took her in his hands, supporting her carefully as he lowered her onto his own lap. "Where'd you find her?"

"Starbase 52. There was a pet store carrying Terran house pets. I got her while I was replenishing our medical supplies."

"Hell of an impulse buy."

Leonard shrugged and didn't share that he'd requested to be part of the requisitions team with that purchase in mind. Usually Dr. Toth was responsible for restocking sickbay. "So, do you want her, or should I go tell Sulu he's a daddy now?"

Kirk's hand moved carefully over the kitten's tiny head, stroking between her ears with two fingers in a way that let Leonard know his answer even before he said, "I'll keep her. Thanks, Bones."

A soft cough from the doorway alerted Leonard to the presence of someone entering sickbay. He looked up from his computer to find a filthy-looking Jim bleeding at him. "Aw, hell," he said, sliding out from behind his desk, tricorder already in hand. "What'd you do this time?"

"Me?" Jim demanded in a tone of outraged innocence. "Try Chekov."

"Chekov beat you up?" Leonard asked skeptically.

Jim shook his head, and Leonard grabbed his chin absently to hold him in place while he scanned him. "Chekov was climbing an outcropping to get a mineral sample, and he managed to set off a miniature avalanche."

"Meaning I'm going to have him in here in another five minutes?"

"Not unless he has injuries he was lying about. He slid down to level ground with nothing more than a bruised ego. I'm the one who was standing underneath the falling rocks."

McCoy snorted as he began cleaning the cut under Jim's eye. "You know, some captains would take events like this as proof that Starfleet actually has a reason for its regulations discouraging captains from going on away missions."

"And leave all the dirty, dangerous jobs to someone else?" Jim demanded.

"You do realize that that's pretty much the definition of a command hierarchy, right?"

"Besides," Jim continued as if Leonard hadn't spoken, "this mission was about as safe as they come. It was just a stupid accident that could have happened anywhere, including Earth."

"Missions to Betazed are as safe as they come," Leonard corrected. "Look at the light for me. Or missions to Risa or Delta IV. Any mission to an unknown and unexplored planet is by definition hazardous."

"Nice to see that space travel has broadened your perspective," Jim said sarcastically. He flinched when Leonard touched the bump on the back of his head with a wet cloth, then held himself forcibly still so that Leonard could wipe off the dirt and encrusted blood before spraying him with a mild disinfectant.

"Being risk-averse isn't a bad thing. Not that you've had enough experience in playing it safe to form an informed opinion."

Jim didn't make the obvious rejoinder, which Leonard appreciated. It wouldn't have been true--with being sent into war zones or to treat epidemics, Starfleet medical staff had a mortality rate surpassed only by security officers--but Jim didn't always let the truth stand in the way of a good argument.

"Anything hurt besides your head?"

Jim shrugged. "I'll have a few bruises on my arms and shoulders. No broken bones, though," -- which Leonard's tricorder had already told him. "So, am I cleared for duty?" Jim asked after Leonard had finished dosing him with an anti-inflammatory.

Leonard shook his head. "Sorry, you've got a mild concussion. You're stuck in here for observation for the rest of the night."

"Can I go get my teddy bear, at least?" Jim asked with a rakish grin.

Straight-faced, Leonard crossed the room to one of the cabinets, opened a drawer, and took out a stuffed octopus that he tossed to Jim.

Jim laughed, turning it over in his hands to inspect it from all angles. "What is this?"

"Sound medical treatment," Leonard answered. The purple plushie was silly and innocuous enough that he could leave it on the bedside table of seriously ill patients without risking them becoming offended, as they might if he put a teddy bear or a doll there. And he'd long ago stopped being surprised at who might need something soft and comforting to hang onto when they were sick and in pain and scared: some of the burliest security officers and most brilliant scientists on board had taken their turns sleeping with the toy.

Jim set the octopus down on the counter beside himself with a fond smile. "You never cease to amaze me."

"I'd say the same, but you'd only take it as encouragement," Leonard said. He gestured towards one of the sickbay beds. "I'll get this set up to monitor your concussion. You can go shower, brush your teeth, put on your pajamas, feed Molly, but I want you lying in this bed in half an hour or I'm sending a couple of my meanest nurses to drag you back here. And if your headache gets worse or you start feeling dizzy, you need to intercom me right away."

"You've got it," Jim said, before heading out the door at a slightly subdued pace.

Leonard set to work programming the computers and monitors by the bed. Nurse Garrett made up the bed with blankets and a pillow; as soon as he'd finished, Leonard grabbed the stuffed octopus and tucked it into the corner of the bed.

Two minutes before deadline, Jim sauntered back into sickbay wearing a pair of pajama bottoms and a T-shirt. There were tension lines between his eyebrows, and Leonard sighed. "Damn it, Jim, didn't I tell you to intercom me if your headache got worse?"

"It didn't get worse," Jim protested. "It just--hasn't gotten better."

"Fine." Leonard scanned him again with his tricorder to make sure that Jim wasn't downplaying his symptoms, then injected him with an analgesic. "If your headache doesn't get better in twenty minutes, let me know."

"Okay." Jim kicked off his slippers and got into bed, laughing a little under his breath when he saw the stuffed octopus. Leonard hid his own smile as he went back to reading the recent issue of the Starfleet Medical Journal for Xenopathology, Morbidity, and Mortality. When he checked the monitors over Jim's bed an hour later, Jim was asleep with a surprisingly peaceful look on his bruised face, the octopus clutched to his chest.

Despite Leonard's initial doubts, Jim took his command seriously. He finished his paperwork on time, showed respect to his crew, and tried to act in a way that reflected well on the service. Which didn't mean that he never got into drunken bar fights, but did mean that he wasn't typically the instigator. Leonard ducked a flying bottle. Not that Jim's intentions mattered all that much when the end result was evenings like this one.

Jim could be called a practiced fighter, if by that you meant that he occasionally got the tar kicked out of him by guys twice his size. It was probably just the deceptively potent local brew that Leonard had drunk two glasses of that made rolling with the punches look like welcoming the punches. Then the other guy's fist smashed into Jim's mouth, and Jim grinned bloodily at him, displaying a gap in his teeth that hadn't been there five seconds ago. Leonard quickly stopped worrying about Jim's possible psychoses and started worrying about keeping him in one piece.

He activated his communicator. "Scotty, two to beam up."

"You and the captain?" Scotty asked a moment later.

Leonard winced as the Reman bruiser landed another punch in Jim's gut. "What's left of him."

"Aye-aye, sir," Scotty said. Almost before he'd finished speaking, the room swirled around Leonard; the last thing he saw of the bar was the Reman's angry face as his evening's entertainment was literally pulled out of his arms.

Jim staggered as he materialized on the transporter pad, and Leonard almost let him fall to the ground. Instead, he caught him around the waist and hauled him up against his body.

"Wha'd you do that for?" Jim slurred.

"Because it's my job to patch you up whenever you act like a moron, and I wanted to limit the amount of work I have to do on my night off," Leonard said acerbically.

"Don' have to--"

"You manage to save that tooth?" Leonard demanded, interrupting whatever fool thing Jim was on about.

Jim raised the hand that wasn't clutching Leonard's shoulder to his mouth and spat, then showed him the bloody tooth with an air of triumph.

"Well, there's that, at least," Leonard said. "Just hang onto that for me until we reach sickbay, all right?"

"Sure, Bones," Jim said, sounding fucking magnanimous, as though he were doing Leonard a favor instead of being a royal pain in the ass.

Leonard rolled his eyes and got them moving towards sickbay, half-carrying Jim's increasingly dead weight. Making tranqs a regular part of Jim's diet had never seemed quite as appealing as it did at that moment, and, given how long Leonard had had the dubious pleasure of his friendship, that was really saying something.

"Dr. McCoy to the Captain's quarters."

Christine looked at Leonard curiously, surprised either at the atypical summons or at the snap in Jim's tone.

Leonard sighed and set down the box of vials he'd been sorting. "You want to finish this up for me?" he asked.

"Certainly, Doctor."

He handed the box over. "Page M'Benga if you need an extra hand in here; I might be a while. Unless there's an emergency, of course."

"Of course," she echoed, already bent over the medicine.

Leonard cast one last look around sickbay, half-heartedly wishing for a reason to justify delaying his response to Jim's preemptory hail, but everything was running smoothly. He didn't exactly rush down the corridors to Jim's room, though.

Jim answered the door chime with a scowl that deepened when he saw Leonard's face. Leonard rolled his eyes inwardly at the dramatics and entered the room. He could see Molly playing with a catnip mouse in Jim's bedroom, unworried by the tension between her owner and his CMO. Wishing that he could be equally oblivious, Leonard turned his attention back to Jim.

"You sicced Hayek on me," Jim said accusatorily.

"I suggested to Dr. Hayek that you ought to have a psychological evaluation and that you would probably benefit from counseling, yes."

"Because you've found something that several rounds of psych tests at the Academy couldn't?" Jim asked, his voice scornful, and Leonard bristled.

"No," he snapped. "Every single one of those tests indicated a tendency towards self-destructive behavior. It's not a martyr complex, and you're committed to the safety of your crew, which is why it hasn't impeded your rise to captain. But you're deluding yourself if you think that I'm the first Starfleet doctor to notice it."

"This is such bullshit."

"What is? The fact that I'm not buying your line or that I won't let being a doctor take backseat in our friendship?"

"The fact that you think it is a line," Jim snarled. "I think I know what's going on inside my own head better than you, Bones."

"Does Hayek agree with that assessment?"

Jim's eyes shifted away from his. "I haven't talked to him yet. He just commed me to set up the appointment an hour ago."

"Well, if he says you don't need counseling, you can say 'I told you so.' Until then, I'd appreciate it if you didn't call me out of sickbay while I'm on duty so you can berate me for doing my job."

"This wasn't your call to make," Jim said stubbornly, but Leonard could hear the genuine hurt underneath his anger.

Leonard sighed. "Look, I'm sorry if this crossed some boundaries. There's a reason it's unethical to practice psychology on people you've got a personal relationship with--even if I have treated just about every other part of you, inside and out. That's why I'm passing this on to someone else. I've got concerns, as your friend and as your CMO, and referring you to Hayek was the only way I could see of resolving the situation without doing something really inappropriate."

"Really inappropriate like what?" Jim asked, still sounding a little pissy, but nowhere near what he'd been a minute before.

"Like doing my own psych evaluation of you," Leonard said levelly. "Or like trying to diagnose you without a formal evaluation, when you thought we were just hanging out like usual, and instead I was analyzing every word, every gesture, trying to make it fit some pattern in a goddamn textbook. Like trying to heal you when you don't know that I think you need healed."

There was a long silence, and then Jim said, "If Hayek says you're full of shit, 'I told you so' is only gonna be the beginning."

"Fair enough," Leonard said. It wasn't the right time for a hug--he was still feeling a little prickly from their argument, which meant Jim was probably feeling the same thing, only twice as strongly--but he squeezed Jim's shoulder for several heartbeats before he let himself out.

Jim was toying with his meatloaf, and Leonard watched him suspiciously. "Not enough ketchup for you?"

Either Jim wasn't listening, or he actually thought that the centimeter-thick layer of tomato paste on his meatloaf was normal. Iowans.

"Hayek says that my 'abandonment issues'"--the quotation marks were audible in Jim's scathing tone--"aren't sufficient reason to keep from getting close to people. He claims loneliness sucks whether I'm feeling it because someone leaves me or because I don't let them in far enough to care."

"Sounds reasonable," Leonard said a little cautiously. Jim had never had a problem getting close to him, but it hadn't escaped his notice that he didn't exactly have much company in the category of People Jim Kirk Trusted to Not Screw Him Over.

Jim snorted. "So you agree with him that I should be more honest with you," he said, and Leonard felt his jaw drop. Fortunately, Jim was still too preoccupied with mangling his meatloaf to notice.

After years of being Jim's primary physician, best friend, and--often unwilling--confidante, he hadn't imagined that there was much he didn't know about Jim Kirk. With a stray wish that Jim wasn't about to drop a confession of murder on him, Leonard said, "Well, I don't know about 'should,' but it's probably fair to say that if I haven't gotten sick of you yet, it's not likely to happen."

Jim's voice was very quiet when he said, "Even if I told you that I want to fuck you?"

Leonard dropped his fork to his plate with a clatter. He'd have thought that Jim was joking, but for the tense set of his mouth and the way he met Leonard's eyes--for the first time since they'd sat down to their dinner--with a sort of weary defiance. "Uh. Is that how Hayek recommended you share that piece of information with me?"

There was a moment of silence, and then Jim laughed briefly, a little of the tension leaving his body. "He wanted me to tell you I had feelings for you that I was interested in exploring, and said I should ask you on a date."

"And instead you decided to cut right to the chase."

Jim shrugged. "If I'm diving off a cliff either way, there's no point in trying to take the scenic route."

"I honestly can't tell if that metaphor's meant to be flattering or insulting."

Jim smiled faintly, even as he said, "I'm guessing this means that you don't reciprocate."

"I didn't say that," Leonard said quickly.

Jim's eyebrows shot up. "So you do want me?"

There was a brief silence as Leonard considered his answer. It hadn't exactly escaped his notice that Jim was a sexy piece, but, no matter how Jim worded his interest, it was also pretty obvious that his proposal wasn't for a friends-with-benefits deal. Jim wasn't the type to get wound up over the fact that he was attracted to his best friend, not when there were a number of other willing options. There was a lot more riding on Leonard's answer than the possibility of hot sex.

Having Jim Kirk fall in love with him wasn't anything Leonard could have anticipated in a hundred years. On the other hand... "Yeah," he said, feeling his heart thump painfully as Jim's face lit up with a sort of incredulous wonder. "I want you." If sticking by Jim for five years, with everything that that entailed--court martials, the constant threat of a messy and violent death, and actually starting to consider a flying deathtrap home--wasn't love, then he wasn't sure what qualified.

The look on Jim's face had morphed into a cocky leer already; Leonard saved the memory of that first expression for future contemplation. "Now?" Jim asked suggestively, leaning a little closer.

Leonard pushed him back into his seat. "After dinner."

"I've been waiting years," Jim grumbled, but he attacked his meatloaf with greater determination than he'd shown in the last fifteen minutes.

"So the ten minutes it'll take us to finish eating and walk to your quarters shouldn't constitute a mathematically significant length of time," Leonard said, even as he marveled a little at the revelation. He'd never doubted the depth of Jim's affection for him; his attention span was another matter entirely.

Jim cleaned his plate in five minutes flat, and Leonard took pity enough on him to hurry his own meal. "My place?" Jim asked when they had returned their trays.

"That depends. How clean are your sheets?"

Jim rolled his eyes. "No cracker crumbs or anything, but I did jerk off on them last night, if you're gonna be squeamish."

"I just wanted to make sure they'd been changed sometime in the past month," Leonard said.

"Three days ago."

"And you've only jerked off on them once?"

Jim smirked at him. "Captain's cabin has a water shower." Just at that moment, they arrived at the cabin in question, and Jim paused in front of the door. "So, does that meet your standards, or should we head over to your room?"

"Here's fine," Leonard said, and watched as Jim punched in his door code. He let Jim take the lead, bringing up the lights to their usual brightness level--no dimmed lighting in deference to their planned activities, apparently--and moving them into the bedroom.

"Do you want a drink, or something?" Jim asked.

Leonard laughed at him. "I think your idea of what constitutes a date need a little work," he said. Before Jim could take offense, he took a step forward and kissed him on the mouth.

"Tha' wa'n'--" Jim tried to say into the kiss, for once too focused on his present indignation to keep sight of the larger goal, and Leonard took their embrace further and silenced Jim with his tongue.

This time Jim actually responded, stroking his tongue against Leonard's with a sound suspiciously like a whimper.

Leonard's lips twitched involuntarily, and he quickly put his hands on Jim's chest as distraction. He rubbed his thumbs where he thought Jim's nipples might be, but two layers of fabric were too much to feel anything through.

He pulled away from the kiss to mutter, "Take your shirts off," and then followed his own advice, dropping them on the floor just as Jim was dragging his own uniform shirt and undershirt over his head, baring a long stretch of muscled torso and exposing the light brown hair at his armpits.

Leonard swallowed hard, literally aching with desire, feeling it in his cock and chest and gut. "Shoes," he said hoarsely, toeing his own off, and tackled Jim to the bed before he'd even had a chance to finish doing the same.

Jim inhaled sharply, surprised, but recovered with admirable rapidity and arched up against him. Leonard ground down for a moment before he forced himself to sit back and pull Jim's left shoe off, dropping it on the floor beside the right one.

"I'd been wondering if you had a kink," Jim said, smirking.

"Not that," Leonard said simply, and lay down beside Jim again.

Jim's eyes sparked with interest, but he didn't ask. Leonard caressed his stomach as a reward--and because it was impossible to lie half-naked in bed with Jim and not touch him--the muscles quivering under his fingertips. He ran his hand over the front of Jim's uniform trousers, feeling the shape of his erection, and Jim made a low sound of appreciation.

Jim's cock was hot and firm under his palm; Leonard itched to touch him skin to skin. While he was still considering the prospect, though, Jim leaned up to tongue his nipple, then caught it between his teeth, and Leonard was effectively distracted from his earlier goal.

He leaned over Jim, who kept his mouth on the erect flesh of his nipple, playing with it with tongue and lips and teeth. It was an awkward angle--Leonard propped on his right elbow and his left hand rubbing Jim's cock through the fabric of his pants--but it felt pretty incredible.

Jim stopped playing around and sucked contentedly for half a minute, making soft, pleased noises against Leonard's skin, then shifted forward to capture the other nipple in his mouth.

There was a damp patch at the crotch of his pants by that point, and Leonard squeezed the head of Jim's cock, trying to make the wetness spread further.

Jim made a muffled noise against Leonard's chest, a quick shudder running through his body. It was hot as hell, seeing him so responsive to Leonard's hand on him through two layers of fabric, but it also reinforced Leonard's earlier desire to get them naked.

He let go of Jim's erection and fumbled at the waistband of his pants left-handed, aided by Jim after he'd figured out what Leonard was trying to do. When Jim started squirming out of his trousers and underwear, Leonard pulled away from him to strip off his own clothes.

"You got any unlubricated condoms?" he asked when they were done, and Jim grinned.

He pulled away to rifle through his bedside table, and pulled out two condom packets. The only person Leonard had ever had unprotected sex with had been his ex-wife, so it wasn't surprising that he had a Pavlovian response to Jim rolling a condom onto his own erection. That response heightened in intensity when Jim swung a leg across Leonard's chest to straddle his face, his cock bobbing enticingly only inches above his mouth.

Leonard reached up to guide the tip of Jim's erection into his mouth, only dimly registering the feel of a condom being rolled over his own penis. The familiar taste of polyisoprene and the feeling of Jim's erection filling his mouth and stroking over his tongue made his body ache with pleasure.

And then there was heat and pressure surrounding the tip of his penis, and Leonard had to get a tight grip on his control to prevent himself from shoving his hips up into Jim's warm, welcoming mouth.

Jim hummed his appreciation, which really didn't help matters. Leonard started sucking again in an attempt to even the playing field, and the two of them settled into an nice rhythm, give and take with an occasional break to moan or catch their breath when things got really good.

Before they could get too good, Leonard pushed at Jim's hips, urging him off of him.

"Everything okay?" Jim asked, staring up at him from the foot of the bed with what looked like genuine, albeit mild concern.

"When you said you wanted to fuck me, did you mean that generally or logisitically?" Leonard asked, his voice a little rougher than usual.

Jim blinked at him for a moment, looking dazed, and then said, "Either. Both."

"Great. Why don't you do that?"

Another second as Jim processed the request, and then he was a blur of motion, delving into his table drawer once more and bringing out a tube of lubricant and--Leonard squinted at the packet, and then grinned--a Rigelian condom.

"Thought you'd appreciate it," Jim said, smiling himself in response to the look on Leonard's face.

"Oh, I do," Leonard assured him. "Though I think I'll appreciate it even more in five minutes."

The smile on Jim's face turned positively wicked, and he uncapped the lube and waved it at him. "How do you want to do this?"

As answer, Leonard rolled over onto his stomach.

"No gloves?" Jim said, half-question and half-warning.

Leonard snorted. "I'm a doctor, Jim, not a hypochondriac. Anything I can get off your hands is gonna be some combination of innocuous, treatable, and already-swimming-in-my-bloodstream, considering how often you poke your goddamned fingers in my face."

"I don't poke," Jim said indignantly, even as he squeezed a dollop of lube onto his fingers. "I pat your cheek, on rare occasion."

Leonard scoffed, though he could admit that the derisive sound might have had more impact if he weren't simultaneously spreading his legs further and arching back into the touch of Jim's finger against his asshole. The finger traced a slow circle, then slid inside at a pace that had Leonard cursing under his breath.

He squirmed against Jim's hand. "You could hurry it up a little," he suggested.

Jim obligingly started fucking him at a smooth pace with the finger, which was better, but not as good as two fingers would have been.

"Seriously, didn't you say you didn't want to take the scenic route?" he added.

There was a breath of laughter against his lower back, just before Jim pressed a kiss there. "For being rejected, not for foreplay. Besides, I thought you'd appreciate me going slow. You don't do this all that often. Unless you've been leading a double-life that you haven't told me about: mild-mannered doctor by day--" Leonard let out a quick laugh at the inaccurate description "--Casanova by night."

"I don't need a partner to fuck my ass for me," he pointed out.

The spare hand that Jim had placed on Leonard's hip tightened suddenly. "Fingers or toys?" Jim asked, sounding a little breathless.

"Both. Usually the second."

"Easier clean-up?" Jim said, in a tone of voice that Leonard knew meant he was rolling his eyes, and he smiled at how well Jim knew him because that was certainly part of it. Much easier to toss a condom in the trash than to walk over to his bathroom and wash up, especially when he was in a post-orgasmic haze and didn't want to move.

That wasn't the only reason, though, so he corrected, "Deeper penetration."

"Oh, fuck," Jim said, fingers jabbing into Leonard, and Leonard made a sound of approval and pressed back harder. "Fuck," Jim repeated. "I'm gonna..."

He slid his fingers out of Leonard's ass and pulled away from him, which would have been annoying if it weren't followed by the sound of ripping plastic, as Jim tore open the Rigelian condom packet and swapped one condom for another. Then there was a steadying hand on Leonard's hip and the brush of Jim's cock against his ass as he got himself lined up and the sweet pressure of Jim pushing steadily into him.

Jim didn't stop until he was all the way in, stretching and filling him, sparking off little bursts of pleasure from the nerve clusters, with a larger jolt when his cock rubbed against Leonard's prostate.

He paused, breathing a little heavier, and said, "How do you like--"

"Just like that," Leonard interrupted. "Only twice as fast, and without stopping."

He could practically see Jim's smirk as he dropped a kiss on his left shoulder, and then Jim slid halfway out and thrust back in smoothly, hitting every spot just right.

Leonard groaned softly and let his head drop down as Jim did it again, and again. Jim faltered slightly in his rhythm when he fumbled his right hand around to strip off Leonard's condom and grasp his bare cock, but Leonard wasn't exactly inclined to hold that against him, and then he hit his stride, stroking Leonard's cock in perfect time to the movement of his hips, even when his thrusts sped up and his choked moans took on a desperate edge.

Leonard was doing a fair bit of moaning by then, himself. He'd anticipated that Jim would come first and had had plans to make him suck him off after he'd recovered, that generous mouth wringing an orgasm from him to supplement the satisfying stretch of being fucked...but, as so often happened, Jim Kirk had a way of disrupting his plans. Barely five minutes after Jim had penetrated him, Leonard cried out in mingled surprise and pleasure and came all over Jim's sheets.

"Oh, god," Jim muttered in his ear, sounding almost as undone as Leonard himself. "Fuck, Bones." He stroked Leonard through the aftershocks, then wrapped his arm around his waist and fucked him deeper, more desperately, before groaning through his own orgasm.

He slid out more carefully than was strictly necessary; Leonard really was used to it, not to mention that the Rigelians manufactured a damn good lubricant. He still appreciated the courtesy, though.

"I'm taking a shower, okay?" he asked.

Jim flopped onto the bed in answer and waved a hand at him vaguely. Leonard snorted.

The water shower was a piece of heaven, and he lingered more than a little, only getting out in the end because he wanted Jim clean if they were going to cuddle.

Jim was still sacked out in what looked like the same position that Leonard had left him in; Leonard rolled his eyes and shook his shoulder. "Jim. You currently have billions of bacteria breeding on your right hand. Go wash up."

Jim rolled over with a muffled grunt, then levered himself to a standing position. "'m goin'."

Leonard watched him appreciatively as he made his way to the bathroom. Then the door slid shut behind Jim, and Leonard instead turned his attention to the sheets. He gave them a disgruntled look, before stripping them off the bed and bundling them into the sonic laundry unit set in the wall. A bit of digging in Jim's drawers turned up a fresh pair of sheets, and Leonard started making up the bed, feeling like he was back at the Academy.

Of course, back then, he hadn't been responsible for half of the mess on Jim's sheets; he'd just been unwilling to sit on a surface that was essentially a petri dish for alien STIs. He had less than fond memories of Jim protesting the maid service, saying, "Come on, Bones, the sheets are clean enough. You're not my mom; you don't have to make my bed for me," but never actually lifting a finger to help.

Leonard pulled back one corner of the covers and got into the bed, the soft cotton cool and delicious against his freshly-showered skin. He wasn't really tired yet, but it was nice to lie back on Jim's comfortable bed and concentrate on the pleasant burn in certain muscles that hadn't moved that way in an embarrassingly long time.

The swoosh of the door opening interrupted his thoughts. Jim was flushed a little with the heat of the shower, and Leonard didn't bother pretending disinterest.

"Nice," Jim said vaguely as he slid into bed. Leonard couldn't tell if he were referring to the fresh sheets, to the fact that he was now horizontal rather than unwillingly vertical, or to the warm, naked press of their bodies. That last certainly had his vote, though.

Jim pressed an anise-flavored kiss against Leonard's lips--Leonard had just rinsed his own mouth with water; he'd have to get a spare toothbrush to keep in Jim's bathroom at some point--then laid his head onto his pillow with a tired sigh. "Wasn't sure if you'd stay," he said.

There were a dozen things Leonard could say in response to that, but finally he settled on, "For the long haul." A smile crossed Jim's face, there and gone, and Leonard added, "Besides, I'm expecting morning sex."

"That's not even a question," Jim promised. He clasped Leonard's shoulder--a slightly odd way of cuddling, but somehow quintessentially Jim--and yawned. "Good night, Bones."


Leonard waited until Jim's breathing evened out into sleep, then turned carefully onto his stomach; it was a bad position for cuddling, but his preferred way of sleeping.

When he'd just begun to drift off, a sudden weight startled him awake as Molly jumped up on the bed, and Leonard felt her picking her way over and through his and Jim's legs until she'd reached his back. At which point he became very glad that they had the covers pulled up, as she made starfish paws against him for half a minute, her claws pricking him faintly through the blanket, before she curled into a warm, heavy ball at the base of his spine and fell asleep.

A minute later, Jim mumbled something in his sleep and edged nearer, his arm settling across Leonard's back to hold him close, laying claim to him as casually and proprietarily as Molly. Leonard's last, semi-coherent thought before he fell asleep was, "Not a cat person, my ass."