Captain Jamie T. Kirk read the orders two times.
And a third time just to be sure.
With a sigh she rolled her eyes. She leant back against the back of the chair behind her desk in her ready room and let her gaze wander to the darkness of space laying behind the big windows.
Suddenly she burst out into laughter.
This mission was going to be… memorable.
She managed to get serious again for a meeting with the senior officers she set an hour later.
The first part of the briefing in the observation lounge went normal.
They talked about the new mission on a recently discovered planet. Zetora. First contact was already established. Now the Enterprise was tasked negotiating some treaties.
“But why us? Why not some diplomatic vessel?” Lieutenant Hikaru Sulu asked confused.
Jamie sighed. “That’s the part where it gets complicated.”
Next to her at the table Doctor Leonard McCoy snorted. “Oh please, when do our missions ever not get complicated?”
She just shrugged and continued. “There’s no female Ambassador available right now. And especially no pregnant one.”
Now everyone stared at her confused, not really sure what to say or ask.
“Captain?” Spock replied with a raised eyebrow.
Leonard exhaled sharply. “Are you trying to give me a headache here? What the hell does a pregnancy have to do with this mission?”
Jamie giggled. “As I said Zetora is a matriarchal society… The thing is: women in power are the most respected and considered to be the best leaders when they are pregnant. There are even some things only pregnant women are allowed to do. Like negotiating the most important treaties. That’s why a pregnant woman has to lead this mission.”
“Uhm…” Sulu started, not sure how to continue.
“We don’t have pregnant women on board”, Uhura spelled it out.
Leonard massaged his temples with his fingers for a few moments. “Congratulations, I have a headache now…”
Jamie grinned at him, then looked to Uhura. “They don’t know that. But they know that they the Federation’s female Ambassadors are not pregnant.”
The doctor huffed exasperated.
Spock raised an eyebrow again. “Captain, maybe you should explain how Starfleet Command thinks this can be solved.”
“With me of course. I’m leading the negotiations”, Jamie stated as if it was the most obvious thing.
“You’re pregnant?” Scotty asked quicker than anyone else had the chance to reply something.
Leonard rolled his eyes and snorted.
The other officers gave the captain confused glances.
“Did I ever tell you that I was in an acting group in high school?” Jamie continued.
“You are going to pretend to be pregnant”, Spock concluded.
The doctor rolled his eyes again. “Yeah, right. You’re just going to beam down there and tell them you’re pregnant.” His voice filled with sarcasm. “And they will believe you and won’t be suspicious at all. They also won’t check, even though you’re thin and in perfect shape and don’t know a bit about pregnancies.”
Jamie crossed her arms and tilted her head. “Are you done?”
He held her gaze. “Not by far, no.”
“Uhm… Starfleet has a solution for that little… uh… hiccup, right?” Sulu carefully asked.
The captain looked to the helmsman. “They do.” She smiled. “They sent instructions to replicate a device that looks like a baby belly and fools medicals scanners. So the Zetorans will think I’m about six or seven months pregnant. And I’ll even have the expecting father at my side to back up the story.”
“This is insane…” Leonard commented, but instantly und unwillingly imagined a pregnant Jamie Kirk. He liked that thought somehow. He also felt a little jealous that someone would get to play her boyfriend or even husband. Which was ridiculous, because they were best friends.
Jamie shrugged and placed her right hand on his left on the table. She grinned at him. "Leonard Horatio McCoy, will you be the father of my fake baby?"
Spock showed his usual raised eyebrow. Everyone else’s jaws dropped. Then Sulu and Chekov suppressed amused and happy grins. Scotty did not. Uhura just sighed.
Leonard just stared at her for a moment. “Completely insane”, he finally just said. He would never admit how much he liked her suggestion.
The captain gave him a grin. “So, will you?”
He crossed his arms and tilted his head. “You already told them that I am the father, didn’t you?”
“Of course I did. We’ll arrive in three hours and the Queen wanted to know how many representatives of the Federation to expect and who they are.”
He rolled his eyes. “Dammit, Jamie! You can’t just tell people…” He trailed off and huffed. “Unbelievable.”
“Relax, Bones. We’re one day on Zetora. Two tops. And if we stay the night, I’ll take the couch.” She ignored the suppressed laughter from Sulu, Chekov and Scotty.
Leonard shot them a dark glare. He wanted to tell her again how crazy this was and that he didn’t want go on that mission. But instead…
“You better read up about pregnancies”, he told her, got up and left the observation lounge without another word or asking to be dismissed.
“Captain, may I inquire how you will explain on later occasions when you mee the royal family of Zetora that you haven’t giving birth and that there is no baby?” Spock asked.
Coolly, she held his gaze. “Well, that’s the brass’ problem. I’m sure they’ll think of something.”
“Are you sure?” the commander replied.
Jamie shrugged again and slid a PADD across the table to Scotty. “I need the fake baby belly in one hour. Bring it to Medbay. Bones and Chapel will have to set me up.”
“Captain…” Uhura started. “…the Zetorans believe strongly in marriage. But you didn’t mention anything about pretending to be married.”
“No”, Jamie replied cheerfully. “We’re telling them that Bones and I are engaged.”
Scotty unwillingly laughed. “You didn’t tell him that, Lassie.”
“Well, he ran out”, she said, gesturing to the door.
“What if he doesn’t want to play your fiancé?” Sulu asked.
“He’ll do it.” She winked. “He can’t say no to me.”
Her words were playful, but true. Leonard McCoy always helped her. Part of her felt a little bad now for pushing him into this charade. Another part was a little excited about telling people they were a couple and expecting a child. That startled her a little.
Jamie shook off those thoughts and touched one of the buttons in the middle of the table. “Attention, crew of the Enterprise, we’re on a special mission that requires some kind of… uh, disguise. So please don’t be surprised when you’ll see me looking a little different in the next days. Kirk out.”
Spock’s expression showed that he wanted to tell her that all of this was a bad idea. But he didn’t.
Uhura sighed and the other men grinned.