Looking in the mirror wasn't really something Jim wanted to do, but the control freak living under his skin made him. Spock was doing his very best to pretend not to be paying attention, so he had as much privacy as he was going to get given that they still had to be in the same room. The sonic shower had been good, but he really needed a shave. Of course most of his things were back in his quarters and not in sickbay's little side bathroom, so that would have to wait.
After a night of dreamless sleep thanks to Bones' hyposprays, he felt stronger and much more together, but his reactions to Spock were still freaking him out. Owning the changes to his physical appearance was about the best he could do to take control of the situation at the moment.
Eyes that weren't quite his own stared back at him as he finally looked at himself. His irises were still blue, at least, but they kind of glittered, just like the markings that ran along his cheek bones now. The Sonarians were, for want of a better word, a sparkly people and now he resembled them quite a lot. According to Spock's initial analysis when they had arrived at the planet, the Sonarians regulated their biorhythms through microscopic crystals in patches of their skin and other body parts, which, when grouped together, refracted light. Evolution seemed to have made this effect a kind of display.
Jim was glad he was not as glittery as Lambert, who seemed to have patches all over his body, or at least what was visible of it given the man's short sleeved uniform. On quick inspection, Jim's seemed to be limited to his face and the hollow of his throat, which was at least one blessing.
The whole situation was so completely screwed up. He did not want to be bonded to Spock, it was just utterly insane. The fact was, some crazies had messed with his DNA and Bones would figure it out and unscramble it for him. He had to believe that because everything else was simply impossible. Until then he had to live with the glitter.
Glancing at Spock, he could feel his instincts reaching out, all but demanding that he be as close to his first officer as possible. It was almost a compulsion, but he refused to give in to it. When this was all over he would laugh about it, he was sure. It was so bizarre it had to be funny. Until then he was fighting.
Taking a brush, he dragged it through his hair and did his best to make himself presentable.
Twenty minutes later he was dressed and feeling a whole lot more like himself. A night in sickbay was never something he enjoyed and having to be near Spock was kind of embarrassing with so many people in and out all the time. He felt a bit like a bug under a magnifying scanner.
"I'm releasing you to your own quarters," Bones told him, "but if I see you anywhere near a duty station I will confine you to sickbay, do you understand."
"Yes, Bones," he said dutifully; his doctor friend knew him too well.
"Take some time, rest and figure this out," was the gruff advice, but Jim wasn't sure he wanted to figure it out. "I want you back here at eighteen hundred so I can give you a check up. If I come up with anything with the Sonarians before then I'll contact you."
Jim nodded, praying that that call would come sooner rather than later.
"Shall we?" he asked of Spock, Allen and Lambert, who were all hovering nearby.
"After you, Captain," was Spock's professional reply.
He had to nod at a few people on the way back to his quarters, but he managed it without actually having to talk to anyone, which was a blessing. However, he couldn't help feeling that his rooms were way too small with four people in them. He felt claustrophobic, as if he was trapped, but he knew it was just the situation making him feel that way.
"Tell me about being a submissive then," he said, sitting down and ignoring all his instincts to be closer to Spock. "What should I expect until Bones can figure this all out?"
Given the expression on Allen's face, he was pretty sure the attaché didn't believe the situation was going to be figured out, but Jim was an optimist. However, forewarned was forearmed, at least he hoped so and he looked at Lambert for an answer.
"In the beginning you do want to do everything your mate tells you," Lambert said in a very sympathetic tone, "but that's just the bond settling down. You will adjust and things will seem more normal."
"How can anything about this ever be normal?" Jim asked, feeling peevish and conflicted. "I don't want any part of it."
"The first thing you have to accept is that you do," Lambert told him, annoying him even more. "At least for now," the Protector added quickly. "At a fundamental level, you do want your mate and you do want him to tell you what to do. Until you accept that, you can't begin to control what is happening to you, even in the short term."
Jim glared at Spock, who was sitting calmly in the corner, apparently failing to react to anything that was going on. The pull and the need to walk over to Spock was incredible, but he refused to give in to it. He was the damn captain, he could not be weak.
"I cannot be like this and remain a Starfleet captain," he objected, because that was one of his central dilemmas.
"Of course you can," Allen said.
"Starfleet will not allow a captain to maintain command if he is compromised by his first officer," Spock countered and Jim hated it, but he had been about to say something along the same lines.
"Once the bond has settled it isn't like that," Lambert said and then looked at Allen for backup.
Jim looked at Allen as well to see what the smaller man would say.
"Adam, sit!" was the rather surprising response.
Lambert just lifted a very unimpressed looking eyebrow at that.
"But..." Jim said, however it appeared Allen wasn't finished.
The Sonarian walked up to his mate and smiled in a very sexy way, placing a gentle hand on the other man's chest. The change was almost instantaneous and, as Jim watched, he saw Lambert's focus narrow down completely to Allen.
"Adam, sit down for me, Baby."
Lambert kind of folded like a house of cards and ended up sitting cross legged on the floor, staring up at Allen.
"Thank you," Allen said and bent down to give the other man a kiss.
The smile that graced Lambert's face was kind of euphoric; the man looked so incredibly happy. Jim didn't know whether to be creeped out or happy with him.
"Do you see the difference?" Allen asked and offered Lambert his hand, while glancing at first Spock then Jim.
"The response is sexual," Spock said.
"Partially, it's about pleasure, sex was just the easiest illustration," Allen said and smiled a little.
Jim did not feel like smiling and when he looked down at his hands he realised they were shaking. It was humiliating. When Spock silently stood up, walked over and sat down next to him he wanted to scream, especially when the tremors running through him stopped.
"I would suggest you rest, Captain," Allen said in what was an annoyingly compassionate tone. "You are still going through a hormonal upheaval and the more you rest the sooner it will be over."
He wanted to scream at them all and tell them to get the hell out of his personal space, but he just nodded. At least if he was asleep, or reading a book or something he didn't have to think too much. Even though he had only been up and around for an hour or two he was feeling sleepy again.
"With your permission, Captain," Spock said as logically and politely as ever, "I will remain within arms reach."
"Whatever," he replied, "sorry," he apologised instantly, after all it wasn't Spock's fault.
"Your ire is perfectly understandable, Captain," Spock told him, "I do not take it personally."
Jim felt like laughing, because that was so Spock and for some reason it pissed him off even more. If Spock had been demanding answers and yelling at people it would have been somehow easier. The Vulcan's calm acceptance got on his nerves.
Before he could say or do anything else stupid, he picked up the PAD from his table.
"Um," he said as he realised he had no idea where Lambert and Allen could go if not his rooms.
"I need to liaise with my government," Allen said as if sensing his confusion. "With your permission, Captain, Adam and I will retire to our quarters. If you need us, please do not hesitate to call."
Jim nodded without even thinking about it. He was glad someone had seen fit to assign rooms to the two visitors.
"Thank you," he said, "for everything."
"It is the least we can do," Lambert told him and he had the feeling the man really meant it.
It was when the two men left that he realised he was holding the PAD, but of course Spock had nothing. Since Spock could not leave him that made for a very awkward situation.
"Um, did you want this?" he asked, offering the device to the Vulcan.
"Thank you, Captain," Spock replied, "but I have already requested several things brought from my quarters. Yeoman Evans should arrive with them momentarily."
Now Jim did laugh, of course Spock had everything organised. Praying that he would not lose what was left of his mind before Bones came up with a solution, he set his mind to reading. Bones would undoubtedly have his hide if he so much as looked at a report, so he pulled up the book he had started before the whole Sonarian mission had come up and settled in.
Adam was humming as they walked back to the rooms they had been assigned and Kris couldn't help noticing it was not the most happy sound. When they were off duty Adam had a habit of bursting into song at every opportunity, but they hadn't been off duty in days and Kris could tell the tension was clearly getting to his mate.
He really did need to talk to some people on the ground and so did Adam, for that matter, but he made a quick decision as he took in Adam's demeanour.
"I'll," Adam said as they walked into their quarters, but Kris didn't let his mate get any further.
What he did was crowd in close and push Adam towards the nearest wall so they were in very close physical proximity.
"You're humming," he said, looking into Adam's eyes.
"Am I?" Adam asked, the surprise dimming in his face very quickly. "I hadn't noticed."
"You're worried about them," Kris replied with a nod.
"They're so completely unprepared for this."
"They're already beginning to adjust."
"You don't think the doctors will find a way to reverse it, do you?" Adam said.
"I spoke to David this morning," Kris admitted; "he was working all night. His team can't find any way of reversing the changes, even with Dr McCoy's input. Changing the captain's DNA back is not the problem, it is what the process would do to him that is the issue. When Jim and Spock finally accept the truth we will have to be ready."
"And that means not tense," Kris added and gently placed his hands on Adam's chest.
"How not tense?" Adam asked, tone very interested.
"I'm making an executive decision," he replied, stroking slowly down over Adam's pecs; "we're taking an hour or so off."
"Are ... are you sure ... we have ... time?" The fact that Adam managed to get out the whole sentence underlined exactly how worried he was about their new friends.
"We're making time," Kris said and licked his lips.
Adam was a workaholic, totally dedicated to his duty when he had to be, but Kris knew exactly how to slide round Adam's defences. One of the reasons they matched so well was Kris knew how to make Adam relax when he needed it.
"Nothing is going to change in an hour," he promised, flicking a finger over one of the hard nubs of Adam's now erect nipples under his mate's shirt. "We need to be perfectly in harmony to be able to help Jim and Spock."
This time when Adam hummed under his breath it was a much clearer, higher note.
"I want you to stay right there while I take care of you," Kris said, giving his mate a small, sexy smile as he slowly sank to his knees.
"Kris," Adam whined, staring down at him with wide blue eyes, sparkling in the light.
"Let me have you, Love," he cajoled, letting his fingers linger on the top of Adam's pants, "and then you can have me."
That was the moment Adam's resolve snapped; Kris watched it happen in Adam's expression. Adam gave him control and that was the permission he was looking for.
"Please," Adam whispered.
It was definitely not the first time Kris had been on his knees for Adam and he found the invisible fastenings on Adam's pants with ease. Then he carefully pulled them down, revealing Adam's semi-hard cock as he did so. Adam was a virile man; it was never difficult to arouse him and Kris loved doing so.
"All for me?" he asked and put on his best innocent expression, because he knew it drove Adam completely mad.
Adam's cock twitched and grew some more as Adam all but growled. Never let it be said that the submissive was not as possessive as the other half of a mated pair. Kris smiled and licked his lips again, before leaning forward and just breathing on Adam's impressive manhood.
He still remembered his first thought on seeing Adam fully erect after they had woken up having completed the bond. It had been 'how the hell did that fit?' and the memory of the ache of being claimed in the same way he had claimed Adam was also something he would never forget.
The whining sound Adam made in the back of his throat was as close as Kris would get his mate to begging unless he played this out a lot longer than he intended. He could reduce Adam to pleading, sometimes they both enjoyed it, but not today. Since Adam had asked so nicely, Kris leant forward and flicked his tongue out, just tasting the tip of his mate's cock as he placed his hands flat against Adam's stomach.
That was all it took for the cock in front of him to jump to full hardness and Kris rewarded his mate by licking his prize from root to tip. In response Adam made the most delicious sound that sent shivers right through Kris. Adam was always vocal, not always coherent, but always loud and Kris loved every second of it. He was pretty sure that if anyone could make music out of sex it would have been Adam.
With that in mind, he decided to ring as much noise out of his mate as he possibly could, so he started by drawing Adam's cock into his mouth.
"By the harps of Aldair," Adam exclaimed and Kris hollowed his cheeks and sucked, at which point Adam went non-verbal again and the most sinful moan echoed across the room.
Kris would have liked to have had Adam laid out on the bed, naked with full access, but he didn't have enough patience for that. They could get to that part later. He couldn't even really get into Adam's clothes to reach Adam's sac, because Adam's uniform was sinfully tight, so he had to improvise. Using his tongue, his lips, the back of his throat and a creative touch of teeth here and there, he proceeded to take Adam apart.
He'd never slept with a man before Adam, but since their bonding he had had a great deal of practice. He knew every response his mate could give and just what it meant and he showed no mercy, pushing Adam closer and closer to the edge with dedicated concentration. It was really no wonder that Adam couldn't hold out for long.
"Kris ... Valir's balls, Kris ..." was the only warning he had before Adam bucked and erupted into his mouth after only a few minutes.
Adam's seed was sweet, with a slightly salty edge as he swallowed it down before drawing back and licking at the tip until Adam was a quivering wreck.
"Can't ... please ... no more."
That was his cue to be merciful, and this was all for Adam, so he was.
Kris climbed to his feet feeling very pleased with himself. His own arousal had bloomed while he had seen to Adam, but right about then he was more interested in just looking at his mate. Adam was leaning against the wall, eyes closed with a blissed out expression that Kris just loved to see on the other man's face. The fact Adam looked a whole lot more relaxed made him very, very happy.
However, then Adam's eyes opened and Kris found himself the focus of a very hungry stare. Adam's expression slowly morphed into a mischievous smile and Kris knew he had just lost control of the situation.
"I seem to remember you saying something about me having you," Adam said and pushed off the wall.
Kris smiled back, after all, this was what he'd been aiming for.
Jim had taken a long nap around thirteen hundred and had woken with a great deal of energy. He felt much more settled than he had done since his rescue and he was almost cheerful on his way to sickbay for his check in with Bones.
"Dammit all to hell."
Jim did not like the sound of Bones' tone as he walked into sickbay, Spock a few feet behind him. He was feeling much more with it now and it was McCoy who looked like he needed a week's sleep.
"Care to enlighten us?" he asked, trying to sound nonchalant, even though he wasn't feeling it at all anymore.
The apologetic look that crossed Bones' face told him just about all he needed to know.
"You can't reverse it, can you?" he said, not waiting for his friend to reply.
"Not without a ninety percent chance of killing you," Bones told him and he considered that risk for a moment. "I won't do it."
That rather stopped his pondering; sometimes he thought Bones could read his mind.
"First do no harm," Bones said firmly and Jim realised he had lost the argument.
He wasn't sure what to say.
"I won't stop looking," Bones said, patting him on the arm and looking him in the eye.
Jim glanced at Spock and then the two Sonarians just entering the room. He sat down on the nearest biobed and took a deep breath, finally accepting that there was no way out.
"How do you recommend we proceed, Doctor?" Spock asked in his usual reasonable tone.
"This isn't my area," Bones replied and then looked at Allen and Lambert. "I suggest we ask the experts."
Allen looked vaguely apologetic, but thoroughly unsurprised, something which annoyed Jim for no reason other than the timing. The Sonarians had been nothing but helpful, but their presence underlined his whole problem which made Jim feel insecure and on edge.
"Well, it would be best if the captain and Mr Spock have some time alone to come to terms with what is between them," Allen said. "Newly bonded pairs are usually left to solidify their connection for a couple of days at least."
It was all said in such a sensible manner that it rubbed Jim completely the wrong way.
"I don't have time to just disappear," he said in a very pointed tone; "I have a ship to run."
"Jim, stop being an ass," Bones said.
"Am I going to have seizures if I'm away from Spock anymore?" Jim asked bluntly, ignoring his best friend.
"From the way you're reacting this morning," Allen replied, "no; it's unlikely."
Jim stood up.
"Then there's nothing actually wrong with me except for a sudden obsession with my first officer, is there?" he demanded.
"Captain," Spock tried to put in a word.
"Is there?" Jim growled at Bones.
"Technically," Bones said, "no..."
"Then we can fit this in around what I'm actually supposed to be doing," he responded, even though he knew he was being unreasonable.
"Captain, while I salute your dedication ..." Allen started to say.
"No," he interrupted, "I don't care what you are going to say. I'm a star ship captain, dammit, and I'm going to do my job."
"Enough," Bones was loud as he brought the discussion to a halt. "If you had let me finish, Captain," his friend said testily, "there was a 'but' coming. It is my job to maintain the mental as well as physical health of the crew when a medical condition is affecting a person's state of mind. In my opinion, Captain, you should do whatever the sparkly little guy tells you to."
"But I'm physically fine."
"You're going through hormonal changes that would knock over an elephant," Bones countered.
"I'm going back to work."
"Do not make me put in the medical log that you're emotionally unstable and unfit for duty. Take the days, Jim."
Bones had given him some ultimatums in his time, but never like that. It gave Jim no choice and he glared at everyone in the room in total betrayal. He was not going to let this beat him and the sympathy in Lambert's eyes was just too much. Wrapping what dignity he had left around himself he strode towards the doors.
"Captain," Spock called after him, but he ignored it.
Jim realised how completely stupid it had been for him to storm out the moment the door to his quarters closed behind him and he sagged a little. At least he hadn't collapsed as soon as he was out of sight of Spock, but he could feel the instinct to go and find his first officer clawing away at his insides. Pure stubbornness stopped him acting on it.
He turned wearily as the door chimed a few seconds later and he touched the button to open it. Finding only Lambert on his doorstep, he was a little surprised.
"Hi," Lambert said with a sympathetic smile.
"Come in," Jim said and just turned away, sitting down on the bed and trying to figure out just how his life became so screwed up.
"Kris is helping Spock sort out a few things," Lambert said, stepping in before the door closed, "I thought you might like to talk."
It seemed to Jim that everyone had done nothing but talk over the last two days and he shrugged non-commitally. He hated feeling so out of control.
"Take a seat, Protector Lambert," he offered, feeling somewhat stupid about his previous outburst.
"Thanks, but first things first, call me Adam. I know it's hard, but I can help, I promise."
Jim nodded; now he had calmed down he could see that. He just really hated being forced into situations.
"Jim," he reciprocated.
"It's not about being forced to obey," Adam said, sitting down next to him and somehow managing to pick the major issue he had with the whole situation, "it's about wanting to make him happy."
"He's been a pain in my ass since the day I met him, I don't want to make him happy."
Adam gave him a small smile for that; it did sound pretty childish.
"You trust him and you're attracted to him," Adam said and sounded perfectly sure of himself, "if you weren't the bond would never have taken. You'd been forced into a desperate state, but you weren't in the most extreme stage. Something in you wanted Spock."
"Not something I was conscious of," he admitted with a sigh.
He was so fed up of being angry and confused that he finally gave in, just a little bit.
"How do you prepare for something like this?"
"Mostly you don't."
"But surely you did?"
"I didn't know," was the answer that surprised him completely.
He had assumed in a society like the Sonarian one that they would have had a system, it seemed he had assumed wrong.
"There is a simple genetic test to tell if someone is a submissive," Adam told him, "but very few people take it. There's no way of telling when a submissive's heat will happen, it's not like puberty, and most of us don't want to live worrying about it. There are programs for those who want to find out and get ready, but usually it just happens."
At least he could understand that reasoning; he couldn't imagine living with the knowledge that one day you were going to be at the mercy of some random person.
"How did it happen with you?" he asked, knowing that he was probably stepping over a line, but needing to know.
"I was living with another man," Adam said with a wistful little smile, "and we thought we were very much in love. Then one day I didn't really feel like having sex anymore. We were a really active couple if you know what I mean?"
Jim nodded; he knew exactly what Adam meant.
"It happened slowly for me," Adam explained, "over a couple of weeks, but eventually I didn't just not want to have sex, I couldn't. When he touched me it felt all wrong. I was twenty two and I thought I suddenly hated sex; it was my mom who realised what was happening."
It sounded thoroughly traumatising to Jim.
"What did you do?"
"Once I knew, it was easier; we're geared up to deal with the whole thing. I registered my status, had a tearful goodbye with Brad where he told me he would always love me, and then went walk about."
"You just followed your nose?"
"Exactly. I had no idea where I was going, but something kept me moving. It didn't get weird until I had almost found Kris. He was organising some event or other, I don't even remember what, I was so distracted. The only thing I remember clearly is seeing him for the first time; it was like I had been hit over the head or something. It was as if I was listening to the most beautiful song ever composed. I think I walked right up to him and just stood there staring like an idiot."
Given how Jim remembered Spock being about the only thing in his world that had made any sense for a while, he could sympathise.
"How did he know you weren't just some wacko?"
"He felt the pull. It's not just you who is feeling things, trust me, even if Spock isn't showing it."
That made him feel a little better.
"He touched me and the next thing I remember is waking up curled up with him in the nearest medical facility. We had our own room and they left us alone for two days while we got to know each other and explored. It was the strangest time of my life, but Kris is everything I ever needed and didn't know."
"But he can control you." It was the point Jim kept coming back to.
"Anyone can control you if you let them."
Philosophical discussions were not what he was after.
"It's a little more real than that," he said, feeling annoyed again.
"Do you give in to every instinct you have? If you want to hit someone, do you just do it?"
"Once upon a time I did," he admitted, "but then I joined Starfleet."
"Something else gave you a reason to control yourself," Adam said in a very sagely manner. "Once you have adjusted it will be the same with your mate. Kris can make me do things, but only because I let him."
"But why do you let him?"
"Because I want to."
He didn't get that, he really didn't.
"Would you believe I was an exclusive top?"
That was actually very easy to accept.
"You look the part."
"I could never give up the control, not until Kris," Adam said and Jim was very aware just how private this information was. "I haven't changed that much. I still top a lot of the time and Kris loves to bottom, it's one of the reasons we match so well, but I can give up that control now. In the bedroom I will submit to Kris in a heartbeat, I don't even think about it, but sometimes that means throwing him on the bed and screwing him until he can't even walk. I love to give him exactly what he wants."
Adam was being blatantly honest and Jim finally realised what the man was trying to tell him.
"What about in everyday life?" He had to understand.
"Part of me wants him to tell me exactly what to do all the time. Most of me is just who I was before. You have to find the balance and reassert who you are while integrating the part that is new. It takes time, but it can be done."
So far Jim had been pushing away that new part; he didn't like it, he didn't want it and it made him feel weak. Adam was telling him that wasn't true.
He looked Adam directly in the eye then.
He really wasn't sure he could do that.
"I'm not sure that's possible," he said and he honestly believed it.
"You'll never know unless you try."
He was not usually afraid of new things, but then usually he was in control. For two days he had been running away from the inevitable, but it slowly began to dawn on him that if he actually started participating he might at least be able to fool himself into believing he wasn't completely at the mercy of his hormones.
"Is Spock okay?" he found himself asking as he finally let his instincts get the better of him.
"He seems to be," Adam told him and gave him a supportive smile; "his logical approach to everything appears to be helping."
"None of this is logical," Jim countered.
"No," Adam admitted and placed a gentle hand on his arm, "but it can be amazing, I promise. If you accept what has happened, you may find you do not want to go back, even if Dr McCoy eventually finds the answer."
Jim snorted derision at that.
"I wish I could explain to you how Kris makes me feel," Adam said.
The mental image of Adam sitting on the floor looking up at Kris flashed through his head, that smile had so much more than words. Jim didn't think it would ever be that way for him though; he was not made that way.
"What comes next?" he asked, needing something else to think about.
"Usually sex," Adam said, totally unselfconscious about the whole subject.
Jim groaned and put his head in his hands; he should have known that.
"Just tell me I'm not going to go running naked through the halls trying to find my pointy eared love god."
Adam laughed and squeezed his arm.
"As long as you don't try and ignore it too long."
Jim wasn't quite sure if Adam was being serious or not.
"I cannot believe this is my life."
"Don't tell me you would say no to sex," Adam said in a very unsympathetic manner, "I heard about your reputation from several members of your crew."
For about half a second Jim considered being scandalised, but decided it wasn't worth the effort. Having sex with Spock did not scare him in the slightest, having sex and not being able to control himself, that was the issue.
Jim had spent a good hour talking to Adam, discussing his reservations and everything he wasn't sure about. Adam was a good listener and patient with all Jim's questions and it really did help. By the end he almost felt ready to face the reality. Of course there was one person he hadn't spoken to properly yet.
That was why he asked Adam and Kris (they insisted on being called by their first names) to give him and Spock some time alone. This time he was not about to avoid the issue at hand. It seemed, however, that all his carefully planned questions went out the window once they were actually in the same room. Spock made him all illogical, the irony of which was not lost on him at all.
"Captain," Spock said politely in greeting and then waited patiently for a response.
"Do you find me attractive?" he found himself blurting out before his brain to mouth filter caught up.
Spock raised an eyebrow.
"Sorry," he said, and turned away; it had been a stupid question.
"I have always found you to be an intriguing example of your species," Spock replied and surprised him, giving him the courage to look back at the Vulcan. "When we first came into contact I believed many of your qualities to be dangerous and impractical, but I have since come to revise many of my opinions. Your body shape and facial features are also pleasing in an aesthetic manner which is stimulating to reproductive urges."
Jim frowned; he wasn't stupid, but sometimes Spock took some interpreting.
"Was that a yes?" he asked.
Spock inclined his head which Jim had learned to read as a nod.
"According to Attaché Allen it would make no difference if I had not been previously," Spock told him, which made him turn fully towards the Vulcan; "your body chemistry is now perfectly adapted to illicit physiological responses from me."
Jim felt something in his chest twist.
"So I've trapped you into this as firmly as I have been trapped," he said and felt strangely light headed.
"Captain," Spock said and he quickly found himself being supported by strong arms, "I am not trapped."
That didn't make any sense.
"But you said ..."
"I wished only to illustrate that this situation is not unpleasant for me," Spock told him, sitting him down in the chair next to his desk. "I have noted that you are inclined to worry about such things and would be unlikely to accept the logical course of action if this were the case."
Spock definitely had him nailed on that one.
"I am Vulcan, Captain," Spock continued to explain; "I have been trained since childhood to overcome instinctive urges. If I so chose I could walk away."
"Why don't you?"
He couldn't help asking. All pointers were indicating that this was not going to simply disappear thanks to the wonders of medical science; it was for keeps unless Bones pulled off a miracle.
"It is only logical to preserve life," Spock said, but Jim didn't buy it.
There was logical and then there was unreasonable.
"Do you think Doctor McCoy and the Sonarian scientists will ever find anything to reverse this?"
Sometimes asking Spock direct questions that weren't quite the questions you wanted answered was the only way to find out things from the tight lipped Vulcan.
"That is not my field of expertise," was the evasive reply.
"Stop hedging and answer the question," Jim insisted in his bluntest tone.
For a moment Spock simply looked at him.
"Given current evidence," Spock finally replied, "I would have to conclude they will not."
Which was precisely the answer Jim had expected.
"Then you're looking at this as a permanent arrangement," he said, since that was the only logical extrapolation, "which makes it less logical. I'm just one man and, weighed against your whole life plan, saddling yourself with me is tantamount to illogical."
Spock lifted an eyebrow at him again.
"I would disagree, Captain," Spock said, "however, I fear you will not be swayed from your opinion by pure logic. Since your health is at stake I am forced to admit you have become important to me. You are annoying, confrontational, often irrational and delight in entirely unnecessary mischief and yet I find I would miss you were you no longer there."
Jim actually felt a little better at that revelation and he finally managed a real smile.
"Yeah," he said, "I like you too, even if you are arrogant, a know it all and far too interested in efficiency."
That earned him another eyebrow, which he took as a win.
"Thank you," he said, becoming serious again.
Spock simply nodded and the moment was over.
"I was talking to Adam," Jim said as the silence that had fallen started to feel awkward; "he said that sex usually comes next."
"A logical progression," Spock replied with a nod, "and one which I believe should increase the rate of adjustment to make this transition easier on both of us."
Jim had never had such a frank discussion about sex before. He usually relied on games before finally bedding someone. The game was half the fun, but they were way beyond that. Spock's detached acceptance was a little off putting. He was almost expecting the words 'bodily functions' to come into the conversation at some point.
"So, we should ... um ... then ..."
Talking about sex wasn't usually a problem for him, but then he'd never had a sex talk with a Vulcan.
"Have sex, Captain?" Spock asked. "Yes, I believe that would be prudent. However, it is almost time for the next meal and you require regular sustenance to recover from your imprisonment. Hence I would suggest we eat, rest for a sensible period and then reconvene this instigation of physical intimacy."
Jim thought he might be losing it just a little, because the way Spock said 'physical intimacy' was almost sexy.
This was it, they were alone, together and Jim was supposed to finally give in to his instincts. He wasn't overly sure Spock had instincts, but they just had to get on with it. They had had dinner with Adam and Kris, Spock had explained their decision and the Sonarians had seemed very happy about the whole thing. Now Jim was trying to concentrate on his attraction to Spock and not over think things.
"I believe I have a solution to your problem, Captain," Spock said and totally wrecked any mood Jim had been trying to set in his head.
"Jim, please call me Jim, or at least Kirk; this is hard enough without the whole Captain stuff."
"But, Captain," Spock said, raising one of his elegant eyebrows, "I believe that may be part of our solution."
Jim sagged just a little. Of course what Spock wanted, Spock was going to get; he didn't have much of a choice, but he had been hoping the other man was not going to make this difficult. There was so much he didn't understand about Spock, but he was trying.
"In recent months, since my lack of foresight and subsequent loss of control after the destruction of Vulcan, it has come to my attention that through Vulcan discipline I have been neglecting the additions to my psyche from my human genes."
Spock always used far too many words, but Jim nodded, getting it so far.
"It would appear this is detrimental to my efficiency. I wish to be purely Vulcan, but I am not and it is illogical to ignore this fact given such direct evidence."
Jim almost thought Spock was talking around the point.
"And?" he pushed, because his hands were beginning to shake again.
"Nyota and I," there was a slight catch in Spock's voice as his spoke the name, although Jim was pretty sure he only caught it because he was quite so attuned to the other man, "have investigated certain outlets for these urges."
He just about held himself back from demanding to know what instantly. It was obvious that this was as hard for Spock as it was for him, logical Vulcan shell or no logical Vulcan shell.
"You have a fear of losing control, Captain, however, Nyota and I have ascertained that due to the control required of me at all times in daily life, in private I find it rewarding to relinquish such control."
For a moment he sat there and thought that through and it finally dawned on him what Spock meant.
"You want me to be in charge?" He had to make sure.
Spock simply raised an eyebrow again at the dumb question.
"I believe that would satisfy both our needs."
It sounded too good to be true, but Jim knew Spock wasn't lying; he would have felt it. Just for a moment he almost believed what Adam and Kris had been trying to tell him and that submissives knew what they were about when they chose.
"Is there anything ..." he tried to find something sensible to ask, but he was more of a doer than a talker in such situations.
He looked at Spock, Spock looked back and he decided he was being an idiot. He wanted to reach out, so he did, but that was when he found something was wrong and he couldn't touch. His hand stopped an inch away from Spock and he couldn't go any further. He tried to move, but he just couldn't make himself do it, every time he tried the feeling of complete wrongness jumped up at him.
"Captain?" Spock asked.
"I can't," he said, still trying to move, but unable to fight the knowledge that if he did he could hurt Spock.
He didn't understand, it made no sense, until he looked directly into Spock's eyes. Then he knew and he realised what was going on. He felt the shakes start as soon as the reality became clear.
"I can't," he said, feeling his chest tightening, "Nyota ... you ... I ... you didn't choose."
He could not hurt Spock; he was fundamentally incapable of it and just by being there he knew he was doing it. Pain ripped through his core and he stumbled backwards, curling in on himself and collapsing towards the floor.
"Captain," Spock said and Jim felt a hand touch his arm, but he could not reply as he felt the shaking become full on muscle spasms. "Doctor McCoy, Mr Allen and Protector Lambert to the captain's quarters, medical emergency," he heard Spock say.
It dimly occurred to him that he was going into another seizure and everything around him seemed to become remote.