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Tooth & Claw

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Tooth & Claw

By Bane Huntress

Part of 'Kitty Time AU' and it's own 'Kitty Trek AU'

Tooth & Claw - Spirk - By Bane Huntress

 

Jim woke up and for a moment, not knowing where he was or why he was waking up in a cold dark place that smelled funny. Or in fact why he also felt odd. But as he took in his surroundings he realized he was in a cramped escape pod, and he was on some planet, and no longer abroad the Enterprise.

“Computer, where am I?” He asked, trying to get some semblance of where he was.

/”Location: Delta Vega. Class-M planet. Unsafe. There is…”/ The computer droned on to herself as he felt a wash of anger and despair.

“Oh. You’ve got to be kidding me.” He groaned as he removed the bandage from his hand. He had to get out of here and find the Outpost and get back aboard the Enterprise before that stupid Vulcan…

For a moment his breath caught in his throat as he thought about the Vulcan.

As he stared out at the ice and sky above him he slowly reached up to the collar about his neck, it was still in place, Making sure that no one could grab the back of his neck, or if they did, it would not affect him or start a Bonding. He had been wearing one since he reached puberty so he could be a ‘normal’ person and be allowed to wander freely. Only a handful of people were authorized to remove it. So how had he been rendered unconscious? The collar had very little give in its construction for outside pressure to be applied; the damn thing covered his throat and shoulders for Christ sake.

Then he remembered what had happed before he passed out… Spock… a shiver of something ran down his spine he was certain had nothing to do with the cold… Spock had tried to remove him from the bridge, the stubborn bastard wouldn’t listen. He closed his eyes as he remembered attacking the two security officers like it would do any good.

Then someone’s hand landed on his collar covered shoulder from behind and he was consumed by a sense of Spock, of deep grief, of lose and an iron will cocooning it all. Then as Jim felt his body stiffen as his empathy reach out to that pain, trying naturally to sooth it and before everything went dark, he felt a spark of recognition from the Vulcan.

Jim covered his eyes and groaned. “Computer…” He whispered. “Are Vulcan’s telepathic?”

/”Affirmative.”/ The computer answered as Jim felt his chest go cold with dread. /”Though like with other species, it varies on how strong their ESP ability can be. Vulcan’s have a strong moral imperative to not use their ability…”/

“Enough!” He barked out as he banged his head back against the seat. Great, just great. No doubt his natural Shifter ESP had reacted in some way to the Vulcan’s.

This was bad, unbelievably so…

Mostly because he could feel the need to get back abroad the Enterprise just to be near the most frustrating alien in the galaxy.

For the millionth time he cursed the genetic throwback in his blood that made him a Shifter.

His entire life he had been nothing more than a sperm making machine. He was never expected to be anything else. Pike was the first to see him as something other than the collar about his neck, or the cat he could turn into. But here Jim was, kicked off the Enterprise by a pointy eared bastard that had started something Jim wasn’t sure he wanted to see through, stuck in an escape pod because of said pointy eared bastard, on an ice planet with no hope of rescue anytime soon.

So, with a sigh, he started to sort out what he had, and decided on the best way to get out of the hell hole he found himself in.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

It was fucking freezing, growing up in a dust bowl did not prepare him for this type of cold. Sure the academy liked their climate training, but you knew that would end in a few days. Being Marooned on Delta Vega was not his idea of ‘fun times’.

He was relieved that someone at least, had equipped the pod with cold weather gear.

What he had not been trained for though… was running for his life from some bloody great red monster!

The air burned in his lungs as he tried to breath in the fridged air. And as he plummeted down the side of a cliff, hitting every rock or sharp lump of ice on the way down, he wished, not for the first time, that he could remove the collar about his neck so he could Shift, running on all fours was easier than trying to get over the rough terrain in clumsy boots.

He groaned as he tried to get his tired battered body to his feet as the red monster decided to try and fall on him.

He had no idea where he was running, but something in his gut was pulling him toward…

‘What the hell…’

Toward a cave in the ice?

He put everything into an extra burst of speed trying to reach the promised safety.

What he did not expect was the huge monster to try and follow. In stead of the cave narrowing it was opening out to give the damn thing more room!

He felt something around his feet as he went down while also being pulled backwards towards the monsters terrifying mouth. He cried out trying to think of someway to not be eaten by the damn creature when suddenly it was letting go as it screamed and began to retread.

He tried to get his breath back as he saw someone flailing a burning torch around, Slowly the figure turned and looked at him, and something niggled in his head that he should know this guy… but apart from Spock, he had never met a Vulcan before, if the ear’s were anything to go by. Then the stranger said his name and he couldn’t believe the guy also knew him.

“Excuse me?” He said in disbelief as he struggled to his feet.

“How did you find me?” The old Vulcan asked.

Jim really didn’t want to say something stupid like he was ‘pulled’ or ‘guided’ to the cave. And he knew he hadn’t smelled this man, his nose, while usually as sensitive as his lion form, couldn’t smell anything in the blizzard he had just run through. So he went with a question of his own. “How do you know my name?” he let his suspicion enter his tone.

“I have been, and always shall be, your friend.” The old Vulcan replied as if it was something he should instantly know.

“Wha.. Oh, look.” He stammered as he felt the adrenalin starting to ease off and the cold start to make him shiver. “uh, I don’t know you.” He said honestly. Damn if his brain was getting sluggish, it didn’t help that there was also the niggling of a pain he couldn’t put his finger on, threatening to give him a headache or a heart attack, which ever came first.

“I ‘am’ Spock.” The old guy said, as if it was the most obvious thing in the universe.

Which it damn well wasn’t. Unless he had fallen through time, this was not the same man who had just kicked him off the Enterprise… “Bullshit!” he growled before he took a closer look at the guy, he might not see the resemblance, but something inside him sure recognised him… it was like when his mother, or brother came to see him and he could feel them near by, not just see them. A familiarity he had only ever had with his blood family.

The old Vul… Old Spock? Whoever, gave him an indulgent smile, “Please, this way.” He said holding an arm out, corralling Jim to start walking deeper into the cave. Which he did, glad the old guy didn’t try and touch him. He wasn’t prone to freaking out, but he was sure he was about to get very close. “I can see you are cold, and there is a fire just around the corner. Then we can discus solution to our current predicament.”

That at least sounded like a good idea as he shivered again with the cold and just as promised, there was a real little fire burning away and he went straight to it. Ignoring the old Vulcan as he sat down and began pocking at the fire.

But then he started talking about how ‘pleased’ he was to finally see him, and how he missed him, and how he should be the captain of the Enterprise instead of just some stowaway who just got thrown overboard. Then talk got to Nero and the old Vulcan was on his feed and coming straight at him, reaching out his hand.

“Whoa!” He said backing away. It was the height of rudeness to touch a Shifter, never mind be so blatant about it. but it was like this guy didn’t even realise what he was doing… but yet insisted that he knew him? “What are you doing?” he demanded.

The old Vulcan frowned at him. “Our minds, one and together.” He said, once again with such familiarity that Jim couldn’t help but respond to it.

He couldn’t look away from the old Vulcan’s eyes as hot dry fingers touched his face. He frowned, not understanding what was going to happen, but something inside him accepted this strangers touch, welcomed it unconsciously… needed it. He was just going to pull away, not consciously comfortable with ‘any’ of this when suddenly the old Vulcan’s voice stopped being outside his head, but inside it.

There were suddenly so many layers of thought, images and emotions that he floundered until one voice took over the narration of what he was seeing.

He listened to this parallel universe / future self of Spock as he told his story of how Nero had come through time and space to wreak havoc in this time and space.

But there was something underneath all that, something that called to Jim in a way he had never experience before. It was soothing and whispered of comfort and warmth, he reached out for it, but before he could take hold, abruptly he was in his own head again and it left him reeling physically and mentally as he struggled not to fall over.

In those last moment, there had been an image of a man, older in a uniform Jim didn’t recognise. The emotions attached to this image were strong and just before a grief so deep overtook him, he heard his name whispered, but knew it was addressing this other man, not himself.

“Forgive me.” He was aware of Spock saying, because Jim knew now that’s who this Vulcan was. “Emotional transference is an effect of the mind meld.”

Jim stared into the Vulcan’s eyes, then he had to get some distance from him as his mind tried to process what had just happened. If what he had felt was anything to go by, this Spock had loved so deeply the other version of himself it was staggering.  Still the whispers of T’hy’la ran through his mind, it had great meaning, but he was fucked if he knew what the hell it was. “So you DO feel…” he gasped out.

“Yes.” Spock answered matter of fact.

Then he remembered what Spock had been trying to tell him. “Going back in time… you changed all our lives.” He said in realisation.

“Jim, we must go.” Spock said, “There is a Starfleet outpost not far from here…”

Jim knew when the damn Vulcan was trying to change the subject. “Wait.” He said, there was a question he had to know. “Where you came from… Did I know my father?” As he searched the few fading memories of the other him, he seemed so foreign Jim hardly recognised him.

“Yes.” Spock answered patiently as Jim felt his stomach drop out. “You often spoke of him as being your inspiration for joining Starfleet. He proudly lived to see you become Captain of the Enterprise.”

Jim couldn’t quite believe it. The only farther he knew was an abusive asshole when his mother wasn’t around, and even when she was, it was hardly any better. He almost wanted to dismiss Spock’s words. “Captain.” He scoffed. He was no one, worthless, after his brother left, he ran off the rails and stayed there until Pike came along. And despite what Pike said, he knew if he ever made Captain, it wouldn’t be for a long time, if ever.

“A ship we must return you to as soon as possible.” Spoke said as he started to walk away.

Jim couldn’t agree more as he took a step to follow.

Something had led him to this cave and this version of Spock… but this Vulcan still wasn’t the Spock he knew just an echo… or the one he really had to get back too was far out of his reach.

 

-- -- -- <(-_-)> -- -- --

 

Jim really didn’t want to leave old Spock behind. He could hardly leave the Vulcan’s side, so the thought of leaving him behind on Delta Vega was not a pleasant one. But what could he do if the stubborn alien wouldn’t come… So he stood back letting the transporters take him away with Spock’s Farwell ringing in his ears, that sounded a little too final for his liking.

Then he was on the Enterprise and the sense of Spock flooded his mind. The relief was overwhelming for a moment as he closed his eyes, letting the need to find the stubborn Vulcan make his nerves tingle.

But it soon occurred to him he couldn’t smell the engineer. “Mister Scott!?” he called. Then it all went to hell as he tried to rescue the man that had got him back abroad the Enterprise.

 

-- -- -- <(-_-)> -- -- --

 

Jim couldn’t quite believe his luck that he was being taken to the bridge and not straight to the brig. And the more he got closer the more the dull throbbing pain inside him seemed to lessen.

Then those dark eyes burned into his own and Jim felt his heart flutter as the Vulcan strode towards him with purpose. But the damn alien didn’t even address him, instead turning attention onto Mr Scott.

His first attempt to make the Vulcan angry seemed to fail, and even he knew the jibes were a little childish. So as Spock was trying to get information from Mr Scott, Jim remembered what the Older version of this Vulcan had said, and his angle of attach changed, even as he took a step closer to Spock, he fought to ignore the need to actually reach out and touch the Vulcan, knowing that would only complicated everything further. But he couldn’t resist the attraction anymore as he stepped into the Vulcan’s personal space.

“What is it with you, Spock?.” He asked, finally having the aliens full attention as dark eyes fixed on him, “Your planet was just destroyed, your mother murdered, and you're not even upset.” Even he knew it was a low blow as he saw the aliens eyes harden.

“If you're presuming that these experiences in any way impede my ability to command this ship, you are mistaken.” Spock replied.

For a second Jim thought the Vulcan had actually outsmarted him, but there was a wavering of doubt that he knew wasn’t his own, but before he could dwell on that feeling his mouth decided to carry on speaking. “And yet you were the one who said fear was necessary for command. Did you see his ship? Do you see what he did?” He asked.

“Yes, of course I did.” Spock answered and Jim knew he had opened a crack in the bastards resolve.

“So, are you afraid or aren't you?” He taunted. The alien hadn’t blinked once as Jim moved a little closer, the urge to push his chest against the Vulcan’s was becoming more than need. But he couldn’t take his gaze from those damn eyes.

“I will not allow you to lecture me about the merits of emotion.” Now there was a note of anger in the Vulcan voice. Jim could also hear the warning in it, but he wouldn’t stop pushing.

The Shifter inside him wanted nothing more than to roll over and give it’s self to this being that infuriated him beyond reason. But the stubborn ness that had got him to where he stood right now against all odds would not let him back down. He had people to save and revenge to seek and he wasn’t going to give up on it now. Whatever the cost.

“Then why don't you stop me?” He asked challengingly.

“Step away from me, Mister...”.

But Jim was done listening to Spock, he couldn’t let him regain any of the confidence he had lost in their little conversation. “What is it like not to feel anger or heartbreak or the need to stop at nothing to avenge the death of the woman who gave birth to you?

Spock tried again. “Back away from me...”

But that was one thing the Shifter in Jim could not do, “You feel nothing! It must not even compute for you!” Yeah, he was going to far, but he couldn’t help but snarl our his next poisoned filled dagger. “You never loved her!”

Jim felt the moment Spock let his anger go, he hardly had time to register the Vulcan was about to attack him as he was filled with hatred and grief, all tinged with anger, anger at Jim, anger at Nero, anger that he couldn’t save his mother, guilt that he hadn’t been quick enough or strong enough to save her.

He only just managed to stave off the bodily attack as his mind tried to cut off the negative emotions coming from the Vulcan, but with every physical connection Spock’s emotional turmoil just kept knocking into him. Jim wasn’t used to shielding himself from the mental onslaught and it made him sluggish to defend himself. Never mind that the Vulcan was stronger than him when he was a normal human.

Yet again, for a nano second, he hated the collar about his neck preventing him from Shifting and pinning this bastard to the ground. But there wasn’t much he could do when he found himself pushed over one of the consoles as he clutched at his neck. At some point during the fight, Spock must have hit him in the throat, the bastard, and somehow he had broken the collar that was now digging into Jim’s neck and he couldn’t get his fingers under it to stop it chocking him. But that was until he felt Spock’s fingers digging into his throat, just under his jaw. And at that moment, all the fight left him as he held onto the Vulcan’s wrist and tried to breathe as Spock was trying to do his damndest to kill him.

Jim could feel it through the thin connection they shared.

Spoke was pouring all his negative emotions into him, and Jim was accepting them like the idiot he was.

His mission forgotten as he let go and just accepted what was happening to him. The Shifter inside him had won as it knew instinctively what Spock needed. And if that was dumping all his emotional strife into him, then Jim would take it.

Between one struggled breath and a cough, Jim pushed his own feeling back towards the Vulcan, letting the alien know he had surrendered in this, that he would take Spock’s violence and lose of control, that if he needed to kill him, Jim would not, could not, fight him.

For a moment, the violence turned into something primal and sexual. Jim felt his body responding to the vicious arousal that Spock’s own confused emotions were causing.

Jim closed his eyes as he felt a moment of possessive glee come from the Vulcan above him before it was instantly followed by a jolt of surprise, then instant guilt as the pressure around Jim’s neck instantly lifted, along with the emotional connection they had shared.

He struggled to get air into his lungs as he fought down the consuming lust that had taken him at the last moment. Carefully he sat up, watching Spock walk away from him, desperately wanted to reach for him, follow him, soothe the feeling of guilt and shame. But as Spock relieved himself of duty Jim felt his heart begin to sink.

He had a mission.

He might have just destroyed something he thought he would never have, definitely not with someone he had only just met, and not in the best of circumstances.

None of that mattered now.

He had people to save.

He HAD the mission…

He just hoped he would live long enough to see everyone on the ship, and Earth, safe.

Then, and only then, could he give up… in agonising pain, if the stories were to be believed.

He stumbled over to the Captains chair as he took command of the Enterprise. Then he felt Uhura come along side him.

“I sure hope you know what you're doing,” She said, and it didn’t take Jim much to hear her anger and pain. “Captain.” She spat his new title out.

“So do I.” He admitted at she walked away, once again his confidence plummeting. After all he was about to do something either really stupid or really heroic. But he com’ed the entire crew letting them know what he was going to do before signing off.

He tugged hard on the collar around his neck, pulling the broken thing off completely as he let it slip through his fingers to fall to the floor, forgotten.

He then noticed Bones stood close to his side.

“I don’t think we have any in stock.” Bone’s said softly as he gestured to his own neck, indicating the Shifter collar that now lay on the floor at the side of the chair. Jim gave it a glance, a part of his mind finding the symbology amusing, casting off his old life so easily, if only it was that simple.

“It’s okay.” He told his old friend with a smile. “I don’t think I’ll be needing it anymore.” He watched as the cogs worked in Bone’s face as he slowly realised what Jim was implying, He took a quick look over his shoulder where Spock had left. Before Jim found the doctor leaning down to him. “Are you serious?” He gasped.

Jim gave his friend a half smile and shrugged one shoulder. “We have a job to do.” He answered. He really didn’t have time to think about what the Vulcan would do once this was all over. He also couldn’t afford to figure out why he had instantly fallen for the alien. “Can you stop that…” He asked when he realised Bone’s was scanning him with a tricorder.

“It’s already affecting your internal organs!” Bone’s hissed. “Christ, Jim, your organs are failing.”

“I have time…” He growled, almost a question, mostly a prayer.

Bone’s hissed. “I have no god damn idea! But if you and that pointy eared bastard don’t sort this out soon, it’s going to be too late!” Then Bone’s went to touch him and instinctively Jim flinched away, earnings himself another sympathetic look. He had never had a problem with Bone’s touching him before, he was one of the few people who could touch him without him hating it.

“You’re in pain already.”

Jim gave a small nod as he looked away before he got to his feet. They needed a plan and he knew he needed everyone to try and find an answer.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Leonard watched his friend walk past him and his heart clenched with empathy for the young brash idiot that he called friend.

Not many people wanted to associate with a Shifter who wasn’t stupid, meek, bonded or submissive. Everything Jim tried hard not to be. Sure, when the twit got drunk he would cling to Leonard like a bur, once even begged him to remove his collar and Bond with him. He had been tempted for all of a drunken nanosecond before he pulled the young Shifter into his arms and snuggling together they slept off their drunken haze.

But to suddenly find out, when everything was going to shit, that his friend had gone and Bonded with the Vulcan that not twenty four hours ago, had been accusing him of cheating.

He looked back down at his tricorder. Jim’s vital organs were already showing signs of stress, even failure. Yet again, the urge to grab Spock and throw him in a room with Jim and lock the door was tempting. Forcing them both to consummate their Bond so Jim wouldn’t die from something so simply resolved, but nothing was simple when his young friend was involved. There was nothing he could do right now, but wait and watch his friend as closely as he could.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --


“You asked me once why I married your mother.” Sarek couldn’t help but remind his son how much he resembled his mother at times. “I married her because I loved her.” He tried not to show the emotion thoughts of Amanda caused in him. But at the moment he was struggling.

 

His son turned to look at him and Serak smiled, knowingly. “I can feel something’s changed with you… and Kirk.” It was thick in the air, despite all the numb horror he could sense from his fellow Vulcan’s onboard the ship, he could feel the bonds he shared with family also extending towards the young man Spock had just tried to kill.

Spock turned away.

Sarek carried on speaking. “He is a Shifter, as I believe you know. As I am also sure that Starfleet would not have been remiss in teaching you the laws when it comes to Kirks kind. And that as a Vulcan you are prohibited to even touch one, especially one that is unBonded. As I believe Kirk... was.” He waited for his son to react to his use of a past-tense.

Spock did not turn, but lowered his head, much like his mother was want to do when she was regretful about something. A most human gesture, but now it just made his chest tighten a little. He was still unable to explore his grief for the human woman who had given him a son to be proud of.

“I did not mean too…” Spoke finally spoke, his voice subdued.

“And I’m sure from your display and that of Kirk, on the Bridge just now, that he has not rejected you as a potential Mate?” He asked gently, this was not what he wanted for his youngest son. But even with their people at such low numbers. And T'Pring most assuredly lost with Vulcan. The others would not want Spock’s mixed blood and genealogy right now to help build their race. But Amanda had spoken hopefully of grandchildren. Even if she had survived, he knew she would never get it now from her son, and he felt another stab of grief threaten to surface.

“I do not think he is aware…” Spock started to say.

“He is very much aware.” Sarak cut off his son’s doubt.

Spock turned to look at him them, his dark eyes wide, displaying shock. But his son nodded, accepting his knowledge as his own. “His intelligence in astounding.” His son whispered. “I do not fully understand his human rashness or how he infuriates everyone around him while also gaining their loyalty…”

“Humans are illogical creatures.” Sarek answered. “But they are also fascinating.” His son gave him a half smile.

“I did enjoy Uhura’s company, I though…” He shook his head once. “She was calm and quietly intelligent… I assumed I might spend more time with her…”

“You have not thought fondly of her recently?” Sarek asked.

Spock’s gaze turned to the floor. Another human trait. “Not since I laid eyes on the human who hacked my training program, re-wrote it without noticed, then brashly acted as if he had done nothing… It had berly been forty eight hours since that incident… but I can not stop thinking about him…” He ran a hand over his eyes.

Sarek had heard human’s talking about ‘love at first sight’ it was an illogical concept, but Amanda had joked about it, but even she could not explain it without using words like, passionate and Romantic. But he surmised, that maybe he was seeing it in his son now, with a rare creature from Earth.

“Then maybe you should go and be with him.” Sarek advised. “If you have in fact Bonded with Kirk, then as I understand it, you need to be close to him, or he will suffer.” That got his son’s immediate attention as he turned fully to him.

“Explain?” Spock all but demanded.

“I have not studied this aspect of Human society,” He confessed. Humans were very reluctant to discuss the secret working of the Shifter customs, much like aspects of his own culture when it came to mating practices.  But what he had observed from Earth’s modern culture, he knew Shifter were highly sexualise once they were partnered with a Human, and that if they were separated from their Mate by distance they would be subjected to pain. He was not sure of how much distance was necessary. But Kirk had seemed very eager to get back abroad the Ship. “You need to be near him now.”

Spock tilted his head to one side, his eyes intense as he seemed to be thinking, then he gave Sarek a nod. “Thank you father.” He said respectfully. “I will speak with you later.” Then he was striding away.

Sarek watched him leave, knowing Spock would follow his heart, as he did when he left their home for Earth and Starfleet. And once again, he was proud, and confounded by his miraculous son.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Jim could hardly contain his relief when he had turned to see Spock come back onto the bridge. Just having the Vulcan within sight was a relief, but he knew he couldn’t let Spock go alone on their mad-cap mission… he couldn’t let the alien walk away again.

Now thought, as he stepped onto the transporter pad that would take them on their hairbrained plan to bored Nero’s ship, Uhura was now chest to chest with Spock and he couldn’t suppress the growl that rose from his throat as he made a step towards the woman who was touching his Mate, he could smell her attraction and for a moment all he wanted to do was grab her and make her disappear.

But one sharp look from his ‘almost’ mates dark eyes as he gently pushed Uhura away from him. That look, stopping Jim in his tracks.

“We will talk later, Nyota.” Spock told her, but only looked at her as he spoke her name intimately. Then he gave Jim a slight nod before stepping onto his own transporter pad. Jim did the same, his as he tried not to glare at Uhura.

“Energize!” he told Scotty as his vision clouded for a moment.

Then it was game on as they ran for their lives abroad the Narada.

 

-- -- -- <(-_-)> -- -- --

 

The pain when Spock took his older versions ship had almost been his undoing as the pain made him want to throw up, but being strangled, again, was not his idea of fun.

Then having to half carry and drag Pike to safety was hell on Jim’s senses until Bones took Pike from him. The only saving grace was that he felt Spock near him again as they both hurried towards the bridge.

But after Nero wouldn’t take his offer of rescue, and they watched the Narada sinking into the black hole, they had nearly lost everything until Scotty had saved their collective asses. And as they pulled into clear space he couldn’t help the relief they all shared.

His plan had worked.

The Enterprise and all her crew were safe.

Earth was safe.

He turned to look over his shoulder at Spock, receiving a smile from the Vulcan and he couldn’t help the laugh of relief with the rest of the crew. But his smile faded as his body seemed to throb with a dull ach, reminding him that it had been to long.

He smiled to himself, realising that he must have been a captain longer than his farther, and his ship, he glanced around at the cracks, was mostly intact.

Slowly he pulled himself to his feet, ready to hand over the chair to Spock. Despite all his recklessness, Jim knew when to call it a day, and he had pushed his body longer than it could tolerate.

He tried to turn and address the Vulcan when his world greyed out and he was going down, down into blackness and a place where there would be no pain, no fight to prove anything, no disappointment or repercussions. And for a change, he went willingly instead of fighting tooth and claw.

 

-- -- -- <(-_-)> -- -- --

 

Leonard swore as he heard Sulu’s panicked voice come over the comm.

/”Sickbay, this is the Bridge. Captain Kirk is unconscious, we need a medical team here stat!”/

“Go.” Captain Pike croaked at him.

Leonard gave him a hard look before he growled. “Is it a requisite of Captains to be stubborn fools?” As he then began to move towards the door, satisfied when he saw some of his colleagues already rushing away with a gurney.

“It’s in the job description.” Pick coughed at his retreating back making Leonard snort in amusement.

When he got to the bridge he couldn’t help but roll his eyes. Johnson was trying to get to Jim to put him on the gurney, but the stubborn Vulcan was having none of it, keeping the nurse away with a hand and a glair.

“Jack, step away.” Leonard growled at the poor man. Ignoring all the eyes that were watching the scene play out on the floor. “He won’t let anyone touch Kirk, and no one should be touching the captain anyway.” He sighed as he kneeled down and began to scan Jim with his triquater. As he suspected. Jim’s vital organs were hours away from shutting down completely, he already had a heart murmur and one of his lungs sounded congested.

Then he looked up and into the Vulcan’s dark eyes that were watching everything that he did as he held Jim against his chest possessively. Leonard would have preferred Jim to be laying flat and not crushed in the strong aliens arms. But he knew better. “You have quarter abroad the ship?” He demanded.

Slowly those dark eyes disappeared as the Vulcan blinked, then he gave a nod, “I do.”

“Great,” Leonard gruffed as he got to his feet. “Can you carry him?” He asked.

Without a word, Spock rose to his feet, easily pulling Jim limp body with him, where he then put one arm under Jim’s legs.

“Now, go to your quarter and do what needs to be done.” Leonard ordered, as he waved an arm towards the corridor. But the stubborn fool just frowned at him.

With a sigh Leonard began crowding the Vulcan towards the door, he had already heard a gasp from Uhura behind him, and knew there would be gossip running rampant the moment everyone’s adrenalin crashed and they realised Jim’s Shifter collar was still on the floor where he had discarded it after Spock had attacked him.

Once they were in the corridor he spoke again. “I’ll send what you need to do to your terminal.” He hissed quietly. “Jim is dieing and you’re the only one now who can save him!” he desperately wanted to reach out and touch his friend, but knew he couldn’t.

Spock didn’t say anything, just gave him a solemn nod before striding off like Jim weighed nothing.

With a sigh, and a sinking heart that he might not see his friend alive again, he went back onto the bridge to collect his people. But when the doors opened he was faced with a sudden hush as all eyes turned to him, and he tried to hide his grimace as he saw Uhura stood by the Captains chair, in her hands, Kirks broken collar. “Shit.” He muttered under his breath as he walked up to her. “Get back to Sickbay.” He told his colleagues, who quickly did what he asked, all of them casting looks at what Uhura still held.

“Is it true?” Sulu asked into the silence.

Leonard rubbed a hand over his face, knowing he couldn’t play his privacy card. Whatever happened, everyone was going to find out soon enough. “Yeah…” he answered to a collection of indrawn breath. “Spock and Kirk are Bonding.”

There was a sudden burst of whispers as the crew turned to gossip.

“Wh… when?” Uhura stuttered as she turned to look at him. Leonard couldn’t help but feel sorry for her. She had just lost her boyfriend. But before he could come up with a response she held the collar out to him, “Was it when this happened?... When Spock attacked him?”

Leonard shrugged. “More than likely.” He answered quietly so he wasn’t overheard by the rising volume of gossip. “Vulcan’s and a few other species aren’t meant to come in physical contact with un-bonded Shifter because of their telepathy or empathic abilities.” He reached out and took the collar from her unresisting fingers. “All it took was one touch.” He said looking down at the damn thing, knowing how much Kirk had hated the things. He wondered now, if his friend would give anything to get it back.

“But couldn’t Kirk reject the Bond?” Uhura whispered back, her eyes fixed to the floor. “They don’t even know each other.”

Leonard just reached out and patted her arm. “That’s something I can’t answer.” He offered before turning and going to sickbay to send Spock all the information he had on Shifters and Bonding with one, and god knew how they would manage to get it on when there was so much grief on the ship.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Spock lean back in the chair as he let his vision un-focus from the vid-screen.

It had not taken long to read through all that the Doctor had to offer about the strange human, cat hybrid creatures. It was fascinating on an anthropological level, but that would have to wait for another indeterminate time.

According to the documents, Kirk’s own body would be failing him until such time as he was copulated with by the being he had Bonded to. And Spock knew that being was himself.

He had ordered the Shifter thrown off the ship in his emotional turmoil to get rid of the latest emotional inconvenience that he had neither the time or patience to deal with. But the moment of recognition and emotional response when he had finally laid eyes on the human again was – comforting. Despite everything, Spock was finding some semblance of calm in those impossibly blue eyes. But in all things, the calm had another side, and the human had goaded him into violence. Violence that towards the end was unbelievably sexual in nature. And without his father’s presence, he knew he would have taken what he knew as instinctually his on the floor of the bridge, or flipped him onto his belly and taken him over the console.

He looked over to the man sleeping in his bed. He could feel the man’s fatigue and pain, even though they hadn’t fully Bonded in anyway yet.

Spock looked away suddenly as he tried to feel for the slight Bond he had with T’Pring, but where the irritating itch had been, was now a saw wound, meaning that she would have perished along with Vulcan. The severed bond was not plesent to feel, but he never had any love for the woman, or she for him, but he had never wished her dead.

He mentally turned away from thoughts of what he had lost, logically, he had something to fix, mend, heal, and there was a deadline, literally, to it.

Slowly he stood and made his way over to the bed he had never used, in quarters where his belonging still sat in crates.

The man on the bed was pail, making the cuts and bruises around his left eye stand out in stark relief. He was also deathly still as he slept. The only movement was from his chest as he breathed.

With care, Spock found himself sitting on the bed at Kirk’s hip. With such close proximity, Spock could feel the Shifters exhaustion, knowing he needed the rest, but there was a pain Spock could also feel, that had a sickly tinge to it.

He reached out his hand, his fingers already in a position to touch the Shifters Meld points, but he pulled his hand back, fisting it. The Shifter was too fragile at the moment, and he couldn’t give his consent to the intrusion, which brought a flicker of annoyance to the surface of his own emotions.

Instead he laid his hand on Kirk’s shoulder and shook it slightly. Then his breath was caught in his throat as those stunning eyes blinked up at him.

He was lost to them, knowing in that moment, when it was just the two of them, that he would give his all, protect and cherish this strange being he now found himself tied too.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Jim felt his world rocked a little as he tried to drag himself from the blackness he had been resting in. where nothing hurt and he didn’t have to think about what an idiot he was, or have his empathy picking up on all the grief and sadness.

He opened his eyes finally to find his Mate looking down at him. Intense dark eyes seemed to be looking straight into his soul, and he instinctively relaxed, but he was reaching up a hand, hovering it centimeters away from Spock’s cheek, not touching. “I’m sorry.” He whispered, hearing his own voice breaking. “You’ve lost so much… you can walk away…” He tried to smile through his pain, trying to pretend the sacrifice wasn’t killing him… literally.

Spock had lost his home, his mother and god knew what else. And the last thing Jim could do to him was force him to complete the Bond, forcing them together for as long as he lived… He let his eyes drift up to the ceiling past Spock’s ear as a cold dread shot through him again. Spock could finish the Bond with some stupid sense of duty to something rarer than the whole Vulcan race now. And in so doing Jim would be left to pine after the Vulcan as he went about whatever life he chose for himself. There was no way Spock could possibly understand what this meant for him.

He managed to lurch up and roll away from Spock, and with an ‘oomph’ of pain he ended up on the floor.

“Kirk!” Spock’s voice called in concern and Jim could hear him coming around the bed, so he buried his face into the rough carpet as he held a hand up to stop the Vulcan advance.

He had tried once again to reject his connection to the alien, but it just ended up with a sharp pressure in his head that made him stop immediately, like a coward. He gritted his teeth knowing that whatever had linked him to Spock was not going to let him go now.

“You are in pain.” Spock said; close enough for Jim to flinch badly. “Would you not let me help you back onto the bed?”

Jim growled a pained laugh into the carpet. “Leave.” He managed as he closed his eye so tight it hurt just like everything else.

“I… I can not do that… Jim.”

Jim rubbed his forehead into the carpet in frustration. “You have to…” Christ it hurt to talk now, but his lungs wouldn’t stop pulling air in and his heart wouldn’t stop beating just yet, even if the rest of his insides were giving up the fight to stay functional.

Jim heard a rustle of clothes, then there was a hand on his shoulder and he wanted to sob. “I will not.” Spoke’s voice was now firm, just like the hand on his shoulder. “I have caused the pain you now suffer. I will do what needs to be done to end it.”

Jim really did want to cry as he moved his head so he could look up at the other being with one eye. “If you do that…” he tried to swallow, his mouth dry. “… then it’s for life… the rest of my life, anyway.” He managed a half deprecating smile. “I wouldn’t be able to leave your side… and I mean literally, maybe to the end of the ship, I’m not actually sure… It’s not far though.” His eyes were unfocusing as he began to babble, his mind losing grip on what he was saying. Another part of his mind compared it to being blinding drunk or incredibly tired, he couldn’t keep a hold on his thoughts for a moment. He waggled one of his fingers in front of his face, marveling at how numb he was feeling.

“Jim?”

“Spock?” Jim smiled as he managed to look up at his Mate, clarity finding him for a moment, then his eyes stung, he hardly knew the alien, how could you know someone in a few days, hours, really. They hated each other… didn’t he?...

“I have read the ships database about Shifters while you slept and I am well aware at what I have wrought, and the responsibility I now have to you.” Spock was speaking matter of fact. “Just as if your mind would not have accepted me, mine would not have accepted yours if I did not wish it on some unconscious level.”

“You don’t know who I am.” Jim uttered as his body relaxed to the floor completely.

“Or you, I.”

Jim was sure there should be humour in that last sentence, but he was beyond thinking much right now, but one thing did filter through his pain and crumbling self sacrifice. “Uhura… you had a thing with her?” He wasn’t sure if Spock said anything, but he got a very distinct feeling of regret as the hand on his shoulder grew a little tighter. “Sorry.” He repeated himself, letting his eyes drift close.

“It is not your concern, Jim.” Spock’s voice seemed soft. “But will you allow me to assist you back on to the bed?”

Jim twitched a finger of the hand that lay on the ground, and the next thing he knew his world was rocking as he was held against someone’s chest like a child, then he was being lowered, and what strength he had left he latched onto whatever he could. “Don’t…” he begged piteously.

“I will not.” Was the reply as Jim felt Spock lower himself to rest, tight, against his side. “You need to rest some more…”

Jim felt a moment of regret and frustration. He marvelled that he couldn’t hear it in the Vulcan’s voice. But there was a question.

A moment of panic swept through him, “I can’t.” He whispered his confession, terrified that if he closed his eyes again, it would be the last time.

How long had he been shivering anyway, it couldn’t be good.

“I will make you well again.” Spock’s voice spoke directly into his ear, which made Jim shiver in a more pleasant way as he turned his head to look at the Vulcan snuggled up at his side.

“I…” he swallowed dryly. “I’ve not done this before.” He whispered as he felt a hand grip his own. “Are we even…” He felt himself start to blush and it made him dizzy.

“I have had sexual contact with humans before.” Spock said, matter of fact, and Jim was sure he was being laughed at. “They have assured me I am compatible.”

“Was with girls?” Jim asked as his mind suddenly went blank and the pain from his body eased a little as strong cool fingers were wrapped around his wrist. The pressure growing stronger until he winced, but as soon as he did, the pressure eased.

“Is this helping?” Spock asked as Jim felt their foreheads touch and Spock was rolling up over the top of him.

“Yeah…” He managed.

“It said that holding your wrist or the back of your neck would help.” Spock was saying.

But all Jim could concentrate on was the cool breath against his lips, then he felt questing fingers at the back of his neck and he lifted his head a little, then he was aware of gasping in air as his whole world exploded in blinding colour. A small part of his mind that never seemed to stop assessing everything was acquainting the experience of Spock’s fingers digging into a spot, just below his skull, on either side of his spine; to orgasms he would give himself to stay sane. But this made them all pail in comparison.

His senses were filled with the being above him. Smell, sound, touch… and there was something more, something he had already felt, but this time he wanted it, needed that feeling. With a little effort he pulled his wrist that Spock still head, up to the side of his own face, pressing what he could of Spock’s fingers into the side of his temple. He whimpered, not sure of what he was asking for.

Then Spock’s fingers left his wrist and fanned out at the side of his face and as soon as the last digit touched his skin Jim found himself feeling a maelstrom of strong emotions that were not his own. There was confusion, bafflement even, but beneath all of that was an attraction, a need to touch, to claim totally and utterly.

Jim felt his body shiver with parallel emotions as he reached out to the need in the others mind, soothing and reassuring the chaos as he pulled it close, letting it enfold him. As the other mind settled a little Jim felt himself totally encased, and it was warm and for the first time in his entire life he felt safe.

He rested there for a moment as he observed the storm that was the other mind. He thought his own brain was a mess, but right now he was aware of Spock becoming frustrated with his own emotion.

He reached beyond his safe heaven, like reaching out his arm and tried to reassure Spock that it was okay to be a mess… a lot had happed in the last two days, it was fine to be sad for a time. But he felt Spock’s frustration. And physically he was aware of Spock growling over him.

Jim sighed as he retreated to his own new safe place to watch and wait. But after a short time he grew bored, so with a little mental and physical smirk he began to think about the last time he had had a chance to touch himself. It had been in the shower the morning before all this crap started, the water was just the right temperature, the soap just slick enough. He couldn’t recall the fantasy he had jacked off too, and began wondering if it was that guy from that show Bones liked to watch, or that green skinned chick… but his thoughts were suddenly cut off as his safe haven was invaded by a very disapproving Spock.

Jim got the distinct impression that Spock really didn’t want him thinking about anyone else while they were together. And Jim could feel the tendrils of violence drifting off towards whoever he had been fantasising about.

Jim found it funny, he was a little relived that it wasn’t directed at him for a change.

Slowly he settled down to smirking again as he once again recalled the thoughts in the shower he had been having, only this time he pulled Spock into it.

At first there was a moment of confusion and Jim felt Spock assessing the memory, then before Jim could find himself getting embarrassed. His memory suddenly incorporated Spock, pressing up, naked and cool against his back. And just as quickly it wasn’t just his memory anymore as it began to take on a tone of its own.

He felt Spock reach around his waist, one hand going up to his chest, the other sliding down his belly.

“Is this what you want?”

Spock was asking and Jim felt it and heard it with his ears.

He nodded mindlessly as he felt a cool hand touch his penis and his world dissolved into a mindless orgasm that was nothing like he had ever experienced before. It shattered through his mind until there was nothing left but the shared ecstasy.

He was aware he had screamed out his release, but there had been an answering roar above him.

Carefully, Jim found himself back in his own mind and body. And he was becoming aware of his surroundings.

Spock was on top of him, he was heavy and Jim was finding it a little difficult to breathe as he came down from his orgasm. But Spock’s face was pushed into the pillow besides Jim’s head and he was panting heavily.

Jim just lifted his arms to rest his hands against Spock’s heaving sides. But as he waited for his Bond Mate to calm himself, he was aware that he had come in his pants, he wasn’t even sure if Spock had even touched him physically, down there, and he rolled his eyes.

“Well this isn’t embarrassing at all.” He groaned sarcastically.

“It was not ideal, no.” Spock answered as he began to sit up, Jim was happy he could now breath, but he felt an icy shard of fear as his Mate began to pull away, it was gone the moment Spock reached out and took one of his hands in his own. “You need physical contact.” Spock said matter of fact, as he looked at their joined hands. “It causes you pain to be apart for now?”

Jim smiled as dark eyes finally looked down at him with concern. He shrugged, “I guess.” He answered before adding. “This is all new for me too.” He smiled. “At least one of us has some experience, but as much as I liked what we just did, I’d like to try it just on the outside too.” He watched as Spock cocked his head a little and a small smile touched his lips, which warmed Jim up from his very core. “But, err, not right now.” He winced, then he was almost breaking his own jaw as he yawned, shivering this time with the force of it.

“You are tired.” Spock said firmly.

And Jim found himself being picked up off the bed. “hoo, what?” he asked as he managed to get his arms around the Vulcan’s neck as he found himself being swept into the bathroom, then lowered onto the toilet seat.

“You need to be cleaned and redressed appropriately.” Spock was saying, as with one hand he started the water in the sink, then opened the cupboard over the sink and pulled out an unused washcloth. His other hand had not let go of Jim’s the whole time, and Jim wasn’t about to let go either.

He hadn’t tried to separate himself from his Mate yet, but the horror stories he had herd was enough for him to not try it just yet. He still felt fragile and so tired he couldn’t even help Spock take care of him.

He couldn’t remember the last time he had ever been so tired, or when he had relied on anyone else for anything.

Life had taught him well that he could rely on no one but himself; everyone had left him in the end. Everyone he was told should be his pillars of support, had all walked away, or he had run from them.

The first person to actually look at him as something other than an inconvenience or a Shifter, had been Pike, then a few day’s later, Bones.

Bones just needed a friend, someone who could put up with his sharp edges while simultaneously being willing and able to put up with all Jim’s own baggage.

Pike on the other hand wanted to see him become more than his tragic past, or the cat he could be or the trophy Shifters pet. Pike challenged him, wanting him to become a Captain of a star ship because he saw beyond Jim’s pelt to his intelligence no one else seemed to care about. And Damn it, Jim had liked the thrill of the thought of running around the galaxy commanding a crew.

So as he went though the Academy, Pike had mentored him, housed him in his own home when he wasn’t permitted to stay in Dorms. Despite the fact he had a collar; the Admiralty still wanted him Chaperoned to some degree. So as he grew closer to the two men who treated him as a normal human being. He had started to learn to rely on them, trust them.

Now though, he had someone else in his life. With a smile he looked up into dark brown eyes that were glaring at him and his smile faded, Spock looked angry.

“Do not think of other men while in my company…”

Jim blinked at the fury in Spock’s tone; he was sure he could also feel it on the edges of his own surprised and worry. “I was just thinking of Pike…” he whispered, reaching out his other hand to reassure his Mate when Spock growled deep in his chest. “He’s like a farther figure.” He tried to explain as he slowly realised Spock was jealous and he let his fingers touch Spock’s jaw. “Without him I wouldn’t be here.” He said softly as his natural empathy tried to reach out to the other being, reassuring him.

Jim watched as Spock put a hand over his own as he tilted his jaw a little for more contact and he seemed to soften a bit. “The other?” Spock asked.

Jim smiled at that. “Bones?” he asked, but when he felt a moment of confusion he clarified. “Doctor McCoy, I call him Bones. We met our first day at the Academy and he’s my best friend. He’s quite funny once you get past his rough edges…”

“Enough.” Spock said harshly and in such a tone that Jim tried to tug his hand away as memories of his step farther came into his mind, followed by all the crappy emotions of being scared and worthless, but before he could swallow them down and hide them behind a smile. Spock was on his knees and pulling Jim into his arms. “I apologise.” Spock was repeating into his ear as his hold became painfully tight. “I did not mean to scare you.”

Jim closed his eyes as he breathed out slowly, letting his arms come up to hold the Vulcan in turn. “You didn’t.” Jim whispered as he let the unresolved issues with his family fade into the back of his memories as he buried his face into Spock’s neck.

“I was jealous.” Spock was confessing.

Jim cracked a smile, “I know.” He assured his Mate, finding it surprisingly easy to share his emotions, especially when his empathy would cause crippling migraines sometimes if he wasn’t careful. It was also kind of reassuring to feel the Vulcan’s emotion in return. “I always though it would be weird being Bonded with someone.” He said his thoughts out loud.

“But we are finding it surprisingly easy.” Spock finished making Jim chuckle as he pulled away enough so he could look into his Mates eyes.

“Yeah.” Jim let his smile widen. Then he felt an unease coursing through the connection he had with the Vulcan and he let his smile fade.

“I was betrothed.” Spock said. The emotions Jim could feel were tinged with a strange sadness that was mixed with a sense of liberation.

“Uhura?” Jim asked. Why would Spock be relived over being with her? She was gorgeous, if a little waspish. But Jim was getting true regret from his Mate when he spoke the lieutenants name.

Spock shook his head, “No, though I know I will not be able to carry on my relationship with her.”

“Sorry.” Jim supplied, he did feel guilty and he wasn’t sure he could apologise to her for what had happened.

“You had nothing to do with it.” Spock said forcefully in a low tone. “If I had not let my emotions towards you overwhelm me, I would not have put you in danger.”

“You…?” Jim asked before his mind read between the words. “You liked me before you nerve-pinched me!?” He watched in fascination as a slight green tinge came to Spock’s cheeks. “But all you did was accuse me of cheating…”

“Which you did.” Spock said a little offended.

Jim just grinned but chose not to answer, he was sure Spock would feel his smugness over it, but he wouldn’t feel guilty about it. “But you still liked me?”

Spock nodded, “It is not often that I find a human with such intelligence to get around my programming.” Jim watched an eyebrow get razed, “Or one that had the audacity to pull it off, then gloat about it and think he wouldn’t get caught.”

“So you liked me at first sight?” Jim asked, as he matched Spock’s eyebrow with a half smirk.

Spock’s eye darted between his own for a moment and Jim found it fascinating before Spock gave a nod. “It would seem so.” He answered and Jim felt true waves of warm affection coming through to him, it was something close to what he got from Pike and Bones. But this was warm and all consuming as he mentally snuggled into it.

“As I was trying to explain.” Spock spoke after a few moment, letting Jim indulge himself. “I was betrothed as a child to… another Vulcan.”

“Humm?” Jim asked, he wasn’t sure he wanted to hear this, but he knew this was something Spock wanted to tell him.

“But she is gone now… She did not manage to escape the planet in time.”

“I’m sorry.” Jim said softly. He hadn’t really lost anyone or anything he truly loved before so all he could offer was his own regret.

“Do not be.” Spock said. “We never did like each other.”

Jim got the distinct impression that She hadn’t thought much of Spock.

“She was not impressed with my mixed heritage.” Spock answered his thoughts. “But I morn her passing… along with everything else I had known…”

Jim tightened his grip on his Mate. “He can’t hurt anyone anymore.” He said roughly, thinking about all that Nero had taken from them both, more so Spock.

Spock held him just as tightly for a moment before carefully pulling away. “I need to tend to your wounds and prepare you to rest.”

Jim let him go with a smile, but kept his hand against Spock’s side as he busied himself with getting the small unused med-kit under the sink. Then Spock was tending to the cuts around his eye, rubbing healing cream into the worse bits, as well as the bruises Spock had given him.

He had winced when Spock pulled his shirt off. The multiple bruises given to him by Spock and the damn Romulan’s were only just starting to darken and make themselves known. He wasn’t sure if the defensive ones on his arms from Spock’s fury, or the one across his chest from slamming into one of the walkways on Nero’s ship hurt more. Then he guessed it didn’t matter. “At least nothing broken.” He smiled up at his Mate, who was looking him over with a deep frown. “Hey.” He said loudly, trying to snap the Vulcan out of his guilt. “I’m tired here, and as much as I want you to look at me all you like, I really want to sleep.” He let the Vulcan feel how heavy he felt, his body was beginning to ach just to lay down.

Jim found himself relaxing as cool hands first washed his upper body with a warm cloth, then rubbed cream into his bruises. He wished it was a little more sexy, but he would take all the comfort and caring he could. After all, he wasn’t really sure what sexy entailed really, but he was damn sure it would be good.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Spock busied himself with the matter at hand, and at that moment, it was trying to support Jim as with his other hand he removed his, now, lovers Trousers and undergarments that had become soiled by their impromptu mating.

It didn’t take him long to clean up the mess Jim had caused, but he found himself frowning as he looked up at Jim as he chuckled to himself.

“I wish I wasn’t so tired.” Jim smirked at him, and through the mental link they had somehow formed, he could feel the humans arousal at his touch, but the flaccid penis he still held in one hand showed no signs of becoming engorged.

“I am sure there will be more opportunities in our future.” He answered as he stood to put the wash cloth into the laundry. “But for now, I need to attend to my own needs before finding you something to wear to sleep.”

Jim was waving his hand around in a human gesture of dismissal. “I prefer to sleep in the buff.” He answered and it took Spock a moment to realise what he was implying.

“That may be acceptable when you are not on a ship where you can be called away at any moment.” Spock tried to reason as he went through the inventory of his belongings. He would have a robe he preferred to sleep in, but he would just have to dress his lover in a uniformed undershirt and a pair of his own undergarments. He did not have anything appropriate to cover Jim’s legs.

“Maybe we can call someone to bring up something from stores.” Jim was musing as Spock began to pull his own soiled garment off.

Spock noted Jim’s use of the plural. “I have spare appropriate garments for us both.” He said as he began to clean the mess from his own genitals, “Everyone who is still capable will be working on repairs for the next five hours and thirty seven minutes.”

“We should be out there!” Jim growled, then Spock found himself forcing his lover back down onto the toilet seat.

“You will remain where you are.” Spock commanded. “You have mitigating circumstances. And as much as I would favour to be working at my station, I know I can not leave your side, and that you need time to recover.”

“But…” Jim said softly as Spock could feel the fight go out of the Humans muscles under his hands. “I should be helping…”

Spock took a moment to catalogue all of the emotions he was feeling from the Shifter, Guilt, self deprecation, a strange disjointed feeling of grief. “You need sleep.” Spock finally spoke as he realised how in need his Lover was for rest. “We will go to bed and I will wake us up before we reach Earth.” He then reached down and picked his lover up in his arms with ease.

He recognised the warm feeling of contentment within himself at having the other man close, and it would seem skin to skin contact was very satisfying.

“Not tired.” Jim was protesting. But as Spock laid him on the bed, Jim was already starting to relax.

Spock chose to ignore the statement for the obvious lie it was as he pulled the covers out from under his lover and put them over him, finally with a sigh or realisation that his robe was too far away to reach, he went and lay down next to his lover, pulling Jim against himself. Jim grumbled something before resting his head against Spock’s chest, then drifting off to sleep. His mind going a little dull as he did so. But Spock could still feel the colours and chaos that made up a mind so filled with brilliance and intelligence it never seemed to truly shut down.

As Spock found himself patting smooth blond hair, he let himself take the opportunity to truly assess everything that had happened in the past few days that had changed the cause of his life forever.

For a moment his irrational mind pondered if loosing the planet he grew up on and his mother was worth gaining the being he now held protectively close. His grief was deep, but his elation was irrationally high. The mix of emotions where strong and unwanted so he fought them back under control. He needed to meditate, to sort everything into rationality.

So he fought them all down with logic, knowing there was nothing gained by letting his emotions surface now, so he put them aside for later.

He would just rest until it was time for them to go back to the bridge.

From what he had read about the first days of Bonding, Jim might not be ready to be around people. They were beings that could not afford to be physical with normal people other than their immediate blood relatives, and from what he had read from his quick look through the cadets file, James Tiberius Kirk had very little to do with his Mother or Brother. So their transition from being a solitary creature to one that was suddenly dependant on another physically might take some adjustment.

With a slight shift of his body to pull Jim closer, he let his eyes close as his forehead touch the Shifter and he let his touch telepathy meld into his Mates mind completely.

He did nothing but observe as Jim entered a REM cycle. Spock couldn’t catch the dream, it was colourful, but soon became tinged grey as an anxiety set in darkening Jim’s dream. Spock didn’t like the thought of Jim being subjected to something Spock couldn’t protect him from. So quickly he began to project calm into Jim’s mind. There was a moment of recognition from Jim before his mind quietened and he slipped into a deeper sleep.

Spock found himself following and was soon sleeping soundly.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

“Spock…” Jim found himself laughing. “I’ve been dressing myself for years; I think I can figure it out.” He said as his Mate was pulling socks onto his feet.

“You are still exhausted.” Spock said matter of fact. “Also, before I woke you, Doctor McCoy has tried comm’ing me twice.”

Jim frowned as he looked over to the terminal on Spock’s desk. “What did he want?” he asked. Feeling his stomach clench a little with anxiety as he reached out needing to put a hand on his Mates shoulder for reassurance, which only made him grimace with annoyance. He didn’t like being needy.

He was about to pull his hand away when cool, strong, fingers pressed again his own.

“Your worry is illogical.” Spock said, but his tone didn’t hold any reproach and as Jim found himself caught by Spock’s dark eyes, he could feel the Vulcan pushing ‘calm’ and ‘Stillness’ at him.

“Thanks.” He whispered, giving his Mate a small smile.

Spock kept their eye contact for a few heartbeats more before he reached for Jim’s boots. “As to your verbal question.” He carried on talking and Jim took a dizzying moment as he remembered about Bones. “I do not know why Doctor McCoy was so adamant in contacting me.”

“He worries.” Jim grinned.  “He’s probably stood outside the door right now with a hypo ready to jam in my neck.” Then he winced, because knowing his friend, it was quite possible.

“I will be taking you to sickbay once we are ready to leave.” Spock said as Jim slipped his foot into his other boot. “I took the liberty of looking into your medical file after you collapsed on the bridge, only to learn how much harm I have caused you.”

Jim shook his head, knowing that he shouldn’t be shocked Spock had looked at his files. “I’m surprised you didn’t break my arms or break my neck.” Jim chuckled instead as he tried to look at the other side of his free arm, already knowing he was bruised beneath Spock’s borrows undershirt. Along with the ones across the rest of him.

“I am sorry.”

Jim felt like ice water had been sloshed through his insides as he looked quickly at his Mate who still sat on the floor at Jim’s feet, his head bowed, the only contact now was Spock’s hand lightly resting against Jim’s knee.

“If I had not been emotionally unstable, I would not have nerve pinched you to quickly resolve an issue I was not capable at that time to deal with sufficiently. I would not have forced this Bond upon you.”

The hand of Jim’s knee slowly curled into a fist as Jim picked up on his Mates self loathing. Quickly and instinctively Jim reached out to ease that pain.

He pulled his feet back as he slipped off the bed and straight into his Mate, Spock couldn’t keep his balance and ended up on his back on the floor as Jim pressed himself down on to Spock’s chest, tucking his head under the Vulcan’s chin as he held the alien down with his arms and thighs.

He took a couple of breaths to calm the discomfort the move had cause, while also being glad Spock hadn’t just pushed him off. And as Jim got himself settled, he realised Spock wasn’t moving because he had resigned himself to whatever punishment Jim was about to give.

Jim snorted. “I already tried to reject you.” He said honestly as he closed his eyes, feeling the body beneath him stiffen. “But it would seem since the moment I laid eyes on you in that auditorium, before everything went to hell; it was already too late for me.”

Jim felt Spock finally start to relax. “I… I could not take my eyes from you.” He was whispering. “From the moment you defeated my test through deception, I was unable to keep you from my mind.”

“Those thought’s nothing good?” Jim pressed with a little amusement, but instead he felt Spock’s chest rumble beneath him, then a hand on his lower back, pushing up his borrowed shirt to rest fingers against skin and then Jim was filled with warm affection, tinged with fond frustration and a confusing curiosity.

“Not so.” Spock had moved his head so he was whispering into Jim’s ear.

“I guess not.” Jim gasped as he tried to get over the strong emotions from his Mate. “I guess neither of us believe in ‘love at first sight’.” He chuckled softly. “But cupid shot us both in the ass.”

“I do not believe…”

“Shhhh.” Jim silenced his Mate, knowing he was about to say something about not being shot. “Let fate just have her way with us.” Then feeling his Mate become more confused. “It’s just a saying.” He whispered as he settled down as he wiggled his hands from the outside of Spock’s arms to the inside till his hands where under the Vulcan’s shoulders as he snuggled down a little trying to get comfortable.

He felt the hand on his back move to rest over his spine, while Spock’s other hand moved up his back until fingers ghosted over his neck in just the right place and his mind suddenly went still and his body relaxed into a boneless heap.

The Shifter in Jim giving over all control to his Mate. His body, his mind, open and susceptible to anything Spock willed of him.

The small part of his mind that could still function, was conshus that he had never given up control like this for anyone, and it was part scary and part liberating to do so.

“Fascinating.” Spock whispered as Jim felt the fingers just below his skull begin to flex.

Spock was experimenting with the pressure of his fingers as to how Jim would act. But it was also having an effect on Jim as he gave a small groan feeling his penis beginning to swell with interest.

“We have to report on the bridge…” Spock said, but Jim heared the quiver in it of hesitation as he was aware of Spock becoming aroused too.

Jim let his Mate know through his empathy, that he was quite willing to have Spock fuck him into the floor right here and now, rather than go out and face the galaxy. Spock was responding by pushing his hand from the back of his neck into his hair. Then Jim found his head being pulled up till he was looking directly into Spock’s dark eyes, then they were closing as Jim found himself being kissed. It was just a meeting of lips, but it was Jim’s first kiss and it sent a tingle down his spine. It went on for a moment longer, then a cool tongue was licking across his lips and he couldn’t help the chuckle at the ticklish sensation before that same tongue was inside his mouth. He let Spock do as he pleased before tentatively trying to push his own tongue against his Mates.

He was just getting used to it; in fact, he was enjoying it thoroughly as Spock kept leading the encounter, his hands carding through Jim’s hair or across the bare skin of his back. Jim felt Spock’s muscles beneath him begin to bunch and he made himself ready to be flipped onto his back when there were a huge bang against the main door.

He tensed instinctively, making all the aches and pains suddenly make themselves known as nausea rushed through him. He was aware of being moved, it didn’t matter how carefully he was being handled he was in pain.

“You must calm yourself.”

Jim focused on Spock’s voice, wincing as he tried to get his equilibrium back.

“Enter!”

Jim buried himself against his Mates chest as he felt another presence enter the room, he wasn’t in any shape to entertain right now. He was still off kilter with the Bond being so new and he despised showing any kind of weakness in front of anyone, from experience, weakness made people hurt you. And god damn it he wasn’t worthless!

“You are safe.” Spock’s voice was telling him. “I or Doctor McCoy will always value your worth.”

“What the…”

Jim flinched away from his friends voice as Bones came closer, but Spock’s arms tightened around him protectively.

“What happened.” Bones was asking.

“You happened.” Spock replied in a very disapproving tone for a Vulcan which made Jim chuckle a little.

“What’s that supposed to mean!” Bones barked his usual cranky self.

“We were doing just fine.” Jim said as he relaxed against his Mate, finally opening one eye to peer at his friend. “Then you banged on the door…”

“And that means you’re both on the damn floor with you in pain?!” Bones demanded as he began to wave a tricorder around, peering at the readings.

“Well.” Jim decided he liked it where he was, resting against Spock’s chest. Spock was right. Bones had been the only person who he felt he could be himself around. “We were down here for more interesting reasons.. but we were interrupted quite rudely by a mother hen…”

“Mother HEN!” Bones spluttered, before recovering. “Well this mother hen is about to tell you that you are improving and your organs arnt about to shut down and kill you!”

“That’s a relief.” Jim smiled at his friend.

“He is injured by a multitude of bruises and contusions.” Spock said. “He is also experiencing stiffness and muscle pain, as you have just witnessed.”

“Don’t tell him everything.” Jim groused. “He liked guessing.”

“YOU think I like guessing when I wish you would just tell me what wrong before you fall over!” It was a usual argument between them. “Does he have anything that I have to be concerned with?”

Jim wanted to feel a little annoyed that Bones was talking to Spock and not himself. But realized quickly it was going to be part of his life now. He was even aware that he was accepting this new Shifter Bond with such ease, it would be worrying if it wasn’t so natural.

At his realisation he felt a echo of his epiphany from Spock, though Spock’s did contain a spatter of nervousness, which even Jim recognised as understandable.

“I do not believe so.” Spock was telling Bones.

“Fine… I brought a painkiller shot with me, and something to help with the bruising and soreness…”

Jim watched as he pulled out a damn hypo, then rummaged around in the small bag he had also brought to produce another. “I’m guessing you wont let me anywhere near.” Bones was saying as he held out the two hypos to Spock.

“Correct.” The Vulcan offered as he took the offending object, then placed one down on Jim’s leg as he prepared the other.

“Just put it against his neck, then press the button… that’s it.”

Jim let out a small flinch, expecting the hard jab that always accompanied Bones’s administrations of the damn things, but all he felt was a little discomfort, then the pain was gone.

“Don’t go too easy on him!” Bones admonished Spock. “Or he’ll think they don’t hurt and he wont be so careful with all the stuff he’s allergic too!”

Jim glowered at his friend as Spock prepared the second hypo and injected him with it, again there was no pain. “Bones.”

“Yeah, kid.” Bones was laughing at him, even if he only had a smirk on his face.

“He’s doing the injecting from now on!” He said raising his hand to point at his Mate.

Bones shook his head as he grind. “You just keep telling yourself that.” then the Doctor was getting to his feet. “We are about to enter Earths comm range… Are you ready to make an appearance on the bridge?”

Jim was just about to push himself up, when Spock suddenly moved, and standing he lifted Jim into the air at the same time.

“You are still stiff.” Spock told him before he could protest. “I will assist you to the turbo lift. You may proceed from there to the Captains chair where you will be seated.”

Jim opened his mouth, then closed it as he cast a glance at Bones, who just shrugged at him with a big smile on his smug face. “Fine.” He conceded. “But can I get something to eat?” He asked as he rubbed his belly. “I can’t remember the last time I ate.”

“Sure.” Bones said as he started to leave Spock’s quarters. “Let’s stop at the mess hall to get something. Earth can wait for a report from you. It’s not like we are going anywhere fast.”

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Jim chocked down some chicken soup and half a ham sandwich before he gave up completely.

He had hated being carried to the Mess hall, even more the looks he was getting from the crew that they encountered. They all grated against his empathy.

The general feeling of relief and elation was prevalent in almost everyone they encountered. But beneath that was curiosity, some smattering of humour, not all of it friendly.

Some people didn’t like the idea of a Shifter in a position of power. Despite the fact that most Shifter’s were taken into hiding at the start of the Eugenics wars, the few the scientists managed to enslave had proved useless. But that didn’t stop the social stigma of anything that was considered a genetically altered human being dangerous. And were as Shifter’s had always been considered dangerous when in cat form, or when their Mate was threatened. But on the most part Shifter’s were mostly seen as passive and controllable. Which Jim knew didn’t help others think of him as a captain of a starship.

On any other day, he would stand up to them all and prove he was more than capable of leading the crew. He had fought people’s low expectations of him ever since he had run his dad’s car off a cliff.

But today he felt fragile and exposed. Like he had so many time when he was a little kid.

And he hated it.

He just wanted to go back to Spock’s cabin and hide for a day or two. Even the Shifter classes he had been forced to attended in his youth taught him that it was too soon for him to be out if he felt he should still be hiding, or ‘seclusion’ as the Registry like to call it, and as he recalled, it could be damaging to the Bond he was forming with his Mate.

“I am here.” Spock was suddenly leaning into him and whispering in his ear, as a hand wrapped around Jim’s wrist and squeezed lightly. Jim felt a sensation of calm wash through him as Spock’s fingers gently massaged the tendons on the underside of Jim’s wrist, forcing the Shifter in him to accept it and relax.

As he looked down at their hands together, he remembered others trying to use his wrist to control him before. Thinking that the Shifter weakness would and should work for them, and it did for a split second before the feeling of revulsion would over take him and he would start flying with fists. Only his mother and brother had ever been able to control him that way and that had been years ago. He looked up to make eye contact with the person he had met only three days ago. The person who he was told he should trust, told he could be friends with. Even if the person who told him that was an older version of the being he now called Mate.

He gave Spock a smile as Spock suddenly looked at him with a razed brow and a touch of curiosity coming through Jim’s empathy.

“We can talk about it later.” Jim promised as he pushed his chair back and started to stand. He was lucky Vulcan’s had quick reflexes or he would have face planted the table as he lost all strength for a split second.

“Damn it Jim, you need to be in bed!” Bones, as always, had his tricorder out. “Your organs are still recovering, never mind all the physical damage you’ve taken.”

“Is that your medical opinion?” Spock was asking as Jim just rested against him, he was hoping in a manly way, and not in an ‘I’m gonna throw up’ way.

“Yes!” Bones snapped.

“Then we…”

“We will go to the Bridge!” Jim growled as he tried to stand on his own two feet. “I need to take command and report to Starfleet.” He patted Spock’s chest with the back of his free hand. “Then you can both do what the hell you want with me.” He promised, surprising himself as he really meant it. But hoped he wouldn’t be made to regret it.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Spock stood besides his captain, one hand lightly resting on Jim’s shoulder, his other tucked behind his back in a fist.

His hand on Jim’s shoulder had at first been because lack of physical contact still, illogically, caused Jim discomfort and a modicum of pain that would leak through the Bond with most unpleasant affects. But now, after the Captain had reported back to Starfleet, Jim was becoming alarmingly fatigued, and Spock’s hold on his shoulder was the only thing keeping him upright and alert.

“I will be expecting reports at my terminal as soon as you and your crew have the time Captain Kirk.” Admiral Banks said, and even Spock could see the weary compassion of which she spoke. “We will send what help we can to your location.”

“Thank you Admiral.” Jim said and Spock felt his fondness towards her, as well as a familiarity he did not comprehend. Admirals didn’t normally associate with cadets, or at least not enough to form such close acquaintance.

Admiral Banks paused for a moment before she closed the connection between them. “And I will let Jonathan know you’re okay. Admiral Banks out.”

Then the screen went blank as Jim chuckled to himself.

“You are familiar with her?” Spock found himself asking as a moment of an emotion he wasn’t common with prevailed his censes, it took another moment to name, and the recognition came from Jim, who was looking up at him with a small, tired smirk.

Jealous.

He had a moment of jealousy.

“She was talking about Admiral Jonathan Archer.” Jim answered him, instead of drawing attention to his momentary emotional laps. “Chris introduced us.” Spock got a vague image of Captain Pike. “He would drag me to dinners and throw me at all the people he was trying to avoid.” A fondness of memory suffused Jim’s mind, like a soft glow in the dark. “I tripped over one of Jonathan’s dogs, so he makes me come by his house once or twice a month for dinner and to walk the dogs.” Then Jim waved a hand to indicate the ship. “It’s why I always wanted the Enterprise. All the stories he keeps telling me about his adventures abroad the first Starfleet flag ship Enterprise... And then she was Chris’s.” Spock was now looking down into eyes bright with determination, and for a second, Jim’s mind was as focused and sharp as any Vulcan’s, if not more so. “I want her, Spock… I want her and I want to keep her as long as I’m able.”

Spock blinked at the conviction in his Mate’s voice, and instantly he knew he would do everything in his power to see Jim had his desire.

Jim gave him a smile before his eyes closed and his head tilted till his cheek rested against the hand Spock still had on his shoulder.

“Your duties are now complete.” Spock affirmed, but he didn’t raze his voice, not wanting to rouse Jim into any more excitement. “I will take you to Sickbay.” Jim gave a slight grumble of protest before Spock felt him slip into a fatigued sleep. “Mister Sulu, you have the conn.” He spoke to the pilot, who Spock noted looked tired. “Also arrange a rolling shift change. We have six point three hours until the first ships arrive; I want the bridge and engineering crew off duty first to have a five hour rest period.”

“On it commander!” Sulu replied as he turned back to his terminal to arrange Spock’s orders.

Spock then picked up his Mate carefully and turned to leave the bridge, pausing when he found Uhura stood by the doors he was about to exit through. Her body language and the determined set of her delicate facial muscles told him she was about to engage in a conversation he had wished to delay until both he and Jim could separate physically.

After all, two day’s ago, he and Nyota had been in a romantic liaison. That side of their relationship was now void. Vulcan’s were monogamous by social constructs, but divorce was not uncommon. But from what he had learned, Shifter mated for life to one individual and loss of that Mate by any means would cause the Shifters imminent death. A fact he ascertained, most humans would be versed in.

He gave her a slight incline of his head as he walked past. He needed to get Jim to sickbay. He still was not happy with his Mates physical health. He was sure Jim had the same stamina as the rest of the human crew, so for him to need constant rest did not feel natural.

He was aware the lieutenant was still following him as he entered the quiet but full sickbay. He was saved from having to enquire as to Doctor McCoy’s whereabouts when the man came up to him, and without a word indicated for Spock to follow him. Which Spock did, allowing himself a little curiosity as to where the Doctor’s sharpness had gone, and surmised it must be due to fatigue along with the rest of the medical staff and crew.

“Put him here.” Doctor McCoy indicated a medical bed around a corner from the rest of the sickbay. It was not secluded, but offered a modicum of privacy, a fact Spock was thankful as he laid his Mate down carefully, taking special care not to let Jim’s head fall back against the mattress, and if his hand lingered in the soft blond hair for a moment, well, he would swear that it was to make sure his Mate remained asleep. But before he removed his hand from Jim’s head, he made sure to take his hand.

He stood quietly besides the bed as Doctor McCoy performed his examination.

“Well, he’s still improving, so I guess his organs wont fall over right this second.” the Doctor said in a gruff manner before he looked up at Spock.

Spock noted the Doctor assessing him again, before the human shook his head.

“I have no idea what he was thinking.” Doctor McCoy said as he brandished his medical tricorder at Spock’s chest as if it was a phaser. “But if you cause him any pain…”

“I would not.” Spock stated, a little affronted at the very thought, until he saw the doctor’s skin darken and his scowl deepen. He did not need to touch the human to know he was remembering the attack he exerted on the being he could, or would, never hurt like that again. “I will not.” He amended firmly as he tightened his hold on the warm limp hand he still held. He was not about to tell the Doctor that he would probably kill anyone who harmed his Mate from now on.

The Doctor glowered at him a bit more. “Yeah… well that remains to be see… but I’m telling you now that if you ever try to mind fuck him, I’ll put you in a medical induced coma so fast all you will have to wonder, is why your neck is stinging!”

Spock tilted his head to one side as he looked at the man who claimed to be one of Jim’s friends. “It depends on your definition of ‘Mind fucked’.” He said, watching in satisfaction as the human in front of him reddened further. “Do you mean actually physical intercourse? Or the human slang to mean ‘harm’?” He watched in satisfaction as the Doctors eyes widened considerable. “We have already shared minds on a most intimate level that was most satisfying. If you were implying physically, I dare say the feat would involve medical intervention and be most unbeneficial for both parties.” The Doctor began coughing as he turned away. Spock caught spluttering that were insulting the colour of his blood and his ears.

“Maybe I’m worrying about the wrong person!” The Doctor managed after he had calmed himself down.

“If you have finished here, I would request to take him back to my quarters for further rest.” Spock ignored the implications.

Doctor McCoy waved his hand in a stay gesture. “If you will let me touch him, I want to set up an IV for an hour or two with saline and some antibiotics he can tolerate.” The Doctor turned away.

Spock felt a pang of anxiety at the thought of another touching his Mate, but he was not medically trained to perform the procedure.

“I’m going to have to remove his shirt.” Doctor McCoy intruded into his thoughts.

“No…” he replied, maybe to quickly as he looked back at the rest of the sickbay, noting some eyes looking in their direction, Captain Pike from his own sick bed and Uhura’s being the most noticeable. “I…”

McCoy’s deep sigh made him turn back. “I can put it in the back of his hand.” The Doctor said as he reached for something on a tray he had put together. “Lean over the useless sack and hold his hand for me… unless you have an objection for me touching you?”

Spock did not have a problem with holding Jim’s hand. He also had shields against any mental transference from the other human. So he leaned over his Mate and held Jim’s other hand, then withstood the doctor as he manipulated his hold to his satisfaction. Then the doctor was pushing a needle into Jim’s skin.

Spock tried to remain calm, but the sight was making him want to knock the humans hand away as he felt his Mate sture in his sleep, meaning there was discomfort in the act.

“Just attacking the bag… Okay, I’m done; you can stop growling at me now.” Doctor McCoy informed him. “Once the bags are empty, call me and I’ll see about kicking the pair of you out of my sight!”

Spock gave him a nod as he righted himself and moved his hold to Jim’s other hand as he reached out, running his other hand from the top of his Mates head down to his warm cheek where he let himself linger.

“Are you Bonded with him as he will be with you?”

Spock tried not to flinch as he heard Uhura come up to the end of Jim’s bed. He moved the hand from Jim’s cheek to the small of his own back as he turned a little to face his former lover. “From what I have had the time to study about Shifter’s. My response would have to be, yes.”

Uhura took a step closer to him, “But you don’t even know him.” she said. moving her eyes to Jim. He wanted to step between them, but found it impractical when his hip bumped the edge of the bed.

“No…” He affirmed. The look in her eyes was one he had come to identify as hurt. He had been very fond of her; she was strong and knew her mind, knew what she wanted and how to get it. She was also what his mother would class as beautiful. And, apart from her insistence at a romantic relationship, she had been more than patient with him. So, with the fond regard he had once had for her. He would at least be as honest as he could. “But from the moment I witnessed him pass the Kobayashi Maru test…”

“Cheated.” Uhura murmured.

Spock chose to ignore the truth in the word he had used himself. “I was intrigued as to how, a mere human cadet could not only reprogram, but hack into the system in the first place.” He said lowering his tone so he would not be overheard, not even by his own kind still present in sickbay. “I was not allowed to question the human myself.”

“Because he’s a Shifter…” Uhura finished his sentence in realisation.

“Yes.” Spock answered. “I did not even have clearance to view his cadet files. Other than his name and rank, it was stated that any and all inquiries were to be directed through Captain Christopher Pike, or through the Shifter Registry.”

Uhura nodded as she rested her hands upon the footrest of Jim’s bed.

“I did not have time to do either before I brought up the charges of miss conduct.” He could not resist moving his gaze to his Mate’s face. “J… Kirk has used a human vernacular of, ‘love at first sight’, to explain our immediate connection… I can not provide another axiom that would be more accurate. However illogical that might be.” He looked back up at his former lover. “I regret that I was not able to conclude our relationship in a more ideal situation.” He tried not to notice the tears in Uhura’s eyes.

“Is there such a thing as ideal when someone brakes up with you?” She asked with a slight smile as she raised one hand to wipe at the tears, Spock was sure, she would not shed here and now. Then she was looking down at Jim again, the smile still on her lips. “I thought he was just a stupid hick when I first saw him, then his intelligence annoyed me… but… he still managed to make me laugh.” Her eyes came back up to Spock’s, and he held them willingly. “I know he’s going to drive you out of your mind.” Her smile lost its brittle edge as she talked and her dark eyes brightened with it. “But I don’t think you’re ever going to be bored with him around.”

Spock frowned, the way she phrased it, it did not sound like something positive.

Uhura gave out a small chuckle as she held her hand over her mouth. “It was fun while it lasted.” She said as she stood straight and faced him straight on, then she bowed slightly to him. “I hope you are both very happy together.” Then she turned on her heals and strode from sickbay, her hair swishing behind her.

“I always liked her.”

Spock spun as he realised Jim must have woken at some point during his exchange with Uhura. The annoying thing was he hadn’t noticed. “You should be asleep.”

Jim tried to raze the hand with the catheter in and winced letting out a small cry as his attention turned to it and he tried to reach for the needle with the hand Spock still held. “Bones!” he cried as he kept trying to tug his hand free from Spock’s hold, to no avail.

“It is antibiotics and saline… you will refrain from trying to pull it out.” Spock informed his Mate. Then Jim was struggling to sit up. “Stay as you are.” Spock told him as he reached for the bed controls and began to raze the top of the bio-bed, only stopping when he could feel his Mate satisfied with his current state of being upright. “Satisfactory?” Spock asked allowed.

“No.” And Spock was sure his Mate was what his mother called ‘pouting’. “Come around this side.” Jim said, tugging on the hand Spock held.

Spock saw nothing objectionable with the simple request. Even though it meant a lot of stretching for him to get all the way around without them letting go of each other. but once he was on Jim’s right side. His mate began tugging at his hand again.

“What are you trying to achieve?” Spock asked, perplexed at the wriggling his Mate was doing. But Jim went limp with a sigh.

“I’m trying to get on my side so you can sit down with me.” Jim said tiredly. “But I’m guessing from you hoofing me around like I weighed nothing, that Vulcan’s have superior strength to humans?”

“You are correct.” Spock clarified. “We also have superior hearing, sight and smell.” This seemed to amuse his Mate.

“Just wait till I Shift.” Jim chuckled as he rested his head back against the bed. “I’ll be a match for you then!”

Spock frowned. “I still have not seen you change into your other form.”

Jim started to fidget again. “Help a guy out here.” He said, “I need more of you closer.”

Spock could not deny the request, so after a few moment he had pushed Jim to the furthest side of the bed, then pulled him onto his side, where the human made himself comfortable with bent legs and arms. And finally Jim demanded Spock sit on the bed in the hollow made by Jims body and legs, facing him. It was not the most comfortable position. But being more in contact with his Mate, even through clothes, was most satisfactory.

“See, isn’t this better?” Jim asked as his eyes began to close.

“It is satisfactory.” He answered as he recalled the memory of them in his bed together while he placed one hand on Jim’s shoulder, the other cradling Jim’s hand with the canula.

“That’s not fair.” Jim said, as Spock found himself looking into one narrowed amused eye, before it closed again and Jim rolled against him a bit more. “Sorry… didn’t realise I was such a snuggler.” Jim murmured softly.

“I do not find it objectionable.” He replied as Jim’s mind once again became quiet as he slipped into sleep.

--

After twenty minutes of observing his Mate breathing in his sleep, Spock entered a light meditative state. The pull of Jim’s quiet mind and the stresses of everything that had happened recently, was enough to make him rest recklessly in the security of sickbay.

--

He wasn’t sure how long he had been lost in his own thoughts when he was hyper aware.

His first reaction was to his Mate. Jim was moving. Their Bond issuing Alert, fear, protect and attack all coalesced into a violent focus. That focus happened to be Nurse Kim.

As Spock took in the scene, Nurse Kim was snatching her hand to her chest as she started to back away, a look of horror on her face.

Then Jim took Spock’s attention back as his Mate was growling, a sound that was coming from deep in Jim’s chest as his free hand was making grabbing motions towards Nurse Kim. There was also something wrong with Jim’s hand, but before he could try and register what that was, Doctor McCoy was rushing into their area.

“What the hell!?”

“I think I accidentally touched him.” Nurse Kim said weakly. “I didn’t mean too.”

“Get out!” Doctor McCoy snapped at her. “NOW!”

Spock watched her go, as Jim tried to lunge after her, almost toppling them both for a moment, Spock wondered at Jim’s sudden strength as he fought.

“Hold him still!” Doctor McCoy yelled at him as he began to prepare a hypospray.

“I am endeavouring to do so.” Spock replied as he managed to get a hold of Jim’s wrist, it was slippery with red blood from where he had ripped out the catheter. But the pressure Spock was applying to his Mates control point was having very little affect.

“Stop him from Shifting!” McCoy yelled as he was still struggling with his medical instrument.

Spock frowned at the comment as he managed to get a hold of Jim’s other wrist, and squeezed, knowing he was putting more force into it than was medically safe. But the urgencies in McCoy’s voice heightening Spock’s tattered emotions.

Jim had quietened though, but as Spock looked up into his Mates eyes he couldn’t help but take an indrawn breath of surprise.

The blue in Jim’s eyes had bled out the white completely and were the pupil should be round; it was now a thin slit of black in the bright lights of sickbay.

Then McCoy was jabbing something into Jim’s neck.

Jim let out a yawl, at which point Spock noted the pronounced canine teeth. Then, it was like it had never happened as Jim regained his normal features, and promptly collapsed against Spock’s chest with a slight groan.

Spock had no hesitation in holding Jim against himself, in fact, it pacified his need to pick the sick Shifter up and carry him out of sickbay and away from all the prying eyes.

“Cant a… guy… catch a… break?” Jim asked, though his voice seemed slightly slurred.

“No.” Doctor McCoy was growling. “Were you trying to damage yourself?!” He was almost yelling now. “You lied to me! You didn’t get Doctor Rizzer to help you last month did you? No! I have an urge to put a damn collar on you right now you flea ridden bag of matter fur!”

“I don’t…”

Spock noted that Jim was finding this whole exchange amusing, but Spock could not see the humour in it. “Please refrain from insulting my Mate, Doctor.” He said pointedly. To which Jim gave a weak chuckle that soon subsided as Spock found Jim relaxing against him more.

“Now you see here…” The Doctor’s face was turning red, a sign in humans of embarrassment or anger. Spock assumed the latter.

“Bones.” Jim was whispering, but it managed to influence the doctor enough he instantly quelled. “You know how busy I’ve been.” Jim carried on. “I was going to ask you to help me the day this whole mess went down… I knew I would be okay... I guess not.”

“Just go and get it seen too.” The Doctor said, his voice now a normal tone. “Your vitals improved some what. So the sedative I just gave you shouldn’t last too long.”

The Doctor was about to put his hand on Jim’s shoulder, but Spock intercepted it and knocked it away as softly as he could manage. The Doctor gave him an opened mouthed stair, but he did not have another outburst of emotions.

“Please explain what has not been done.” Spock said, he had not understood the conversation.

Jim moved against his chest a little, but Spock was reluctant to let him move away, but the human soon settled. “They take the Collar I was wearing…” He gestured to his throat vaguely with his unbloodied hand. Spock had wondered why the Cadet was wearing a non regulation item that had covered the back of his neck into his hairline and only tapered some to under the chin. It had looked hard. And when Spock had been emotionally compromised and had his hand around the thing Jim wore, he had been satisfied when he heard the thing crack beneath his fingers. “… and take it off once a fortnight so I can Shift for an hour.”

“If he doesn’t…” the Doctor cut in. “He can get stuck in his Shifted form. Or if he gets startled his body will try and force a shift, which could chock him if he was wearing a Shifter collar or great harm if he’s wearing normal human clothing that wont give if he Shifts… which is why he’s now got a Shifter tranquiliser in him, because he was startled and didn’t have the sense not to stay human!” The Doctor was now looking down at Jim and chastising him. “Which is an extremely stupid move!”

“I concur.” Spock affirmed. He did not want Jim to harm himself. “I will endeavour to make sure he… Shifts… as much as possible.”

He felt a sharp form of surprise and pleasure come from his Mate, along with a scence of relief Spock didn’t quite understand.

“Also… Is there another form of dress?” Spock inquired of the Doctor, after his remake about ‘normal’ human clothes. He had not been privy to any other.

“You’re gonna have to go buy a new wardrobe.” The doctor was grinning as Spock felt his Mate groan. “Also, requisitioning a whole new set of uniforms.”

“Stop!” Jim groaned “They are gonna be pissed with me as it is… and you know it’s gonna take weeks after this mess…”

Spock felt his Mate suddenly become still, both physically and mentally as his last words died away in the silence of their corner. Spock understood his Mates blankness all to well. So he tightened his hold, something his mother would do for him when he was very young, before he discouraged her human comfort.

“Yeah… Well, get out of here you two.” McCoy was saying, his voice deep and rough. “Spock, make sure he Shifts as soon as you gets back to your quarters…. I’ll send another transmission home for you, about your uniform.”

“Thanks.” Jim said softly.

Spock knew it was his cue to pick up his Mate, who seemed boneless in his hold, and he started to leave.

“One moment Mr Spock!”

Spock tried not to grimace when Captain Pikes called out. “Yes, captain.” Spock said instead.

“Are you okay?” Jim asked Captain Pike from Spock’s arms.

Spock reluctantly moved to Captain Pikes biobed, making sure Jim would be able to look down on the other human without straining himself.

“I was about to ask you the same thing.” Captain Pike smiled at Jim.

Spoke felt a moment of apprehension and a little embarrassment from his Mate before he answered. “I’ll be fine…” Jim said as Spoke found Jim glancing up at him. “I guess that’s a we now.”

“I can see that.” Captain Pike answered with a knowing smirk. “Spock?”

“Yes, Captain.” Spoke replied.

“You look after him.” There was a hint of warning in the Captains voice.

Spoke was distracted as he felt a wave of unease come from his Mate, which made him once again look down into blue eyes. “I endeavour to do just that.” he said with conviction, more to his Mate than to the question asked of him.

“Ugg, Dismissed.” Captain Pike said as he lifted a hand to wave them away. “I will talk to you both later.”

“Captain.” Spock replied as he began to turn.

“Don’t tell Jon!” Jim said as they moved away.

“Fine.” Captain Pike called as Spock walked from the sick bay.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Jim just wanted to sleep as Spoke placed him down on the bed, but he could feel the lion inside himself yearning to be free. The moment in the sick bay as he went after the nurse had awoken his Shifter and he needed to feel his fur.

He bit his lip as Spock was already taking his shoe’s off. “Can you undress me?” he asked quietly. Hating the need to ask this of the Vulcan, but he could hardly lift his own head, never mind pull his borrowed shirt over his own head.

“I am endeavouring to do so.” Spock’s clipped reply came from his feet.

“I mean everything.” Jim clarified. “Bones was right…” he sighed as he felt Spock pause. “I need to Shift.”

“Will it cause you distress?” Spock was asking as Jim felt him carry on removing his clothes.

“Only if I don’t.” Jim chuckled softly as he tried to ignore the fact his Mate was trying to remove his pants. “But…” he closed his eyes. “It’s been years since I was allowed to stay Shifted for more than an hour or so…” The last time had been before his brother had left. His mother never liked to see his worthless Shifted form, and his step father was scared of him, so he soon learned never to Shift near him.

He gasped and opened his eyes when he found himself being pulled up and against Spocks chest. One of Spock’s hand had gone to the back of his head, holding it tight against his shoulder. “Spock?” he whispered as he brought his own hands up to rest against the aliens back, perplexed at the sudden reaction.

“If you wish to change… I will never stop you.” Spock was saying into his ear with a ferocity Jim had never heard used in his defence before, by anyone.

Jim smiled, unsure how to respond to such emotions. “You can’t promise never.” He said reasonably.

“I will endeavour to do so.” Then Jim felt Spock pulling him away from his shoulder, enough so that Jim was looking into intense dark eyes, mere inches always from his own. “Will you show me your other self?” Spock whispered against his lips.

Jim couldn’t help but glance down at those lips. “Umm…” So many people had asked before, a hunger in their eyes of one form or another. He found himself looking back up into Spock’s eyes. “Sure.” Never before had anyone, except for his brother, had he ever been willing to do it when asked. “I still need to be naked though.” He smiled trying to hide his embarrassment.

He watched Spock blink slowly, then the Vulcan was pulling away and in a short amount of time, Jim found himself naked, sat on the side of the bed with the fully dressed alien.

He gave his Mate one last shy glance before he leaned forwards while Shifting, and before his hands hit the floor, he landed on all four paws.

He gave a growl of discomfort as he shook his mane out. He really had left it too long without Shifting, he felt stiff and his fur itched a little. As he stretched he also couldn’t help the yawn that stretched his mouth open fully. Then he flinched when he felt hands sinking into his mane. He whipped his head around to find Spock looking at him, a look on his face Jim couldn’t even pretend to understand, that was before a tendril of something seeped through their forming Bond.

It was an old Grief, tinged with guilt, but there was also a fondness.

Jim gave a grunt of curiosity, which seemed to snap the Vulcan out of whatever memories he had been in. Then he was pulling his exploring hands away and Jim moved, missing the lose.

“Apologies… I should have asked permission.” Spock said as he folded his hands on his lap. At some point, the Vulcan had sunk to his knees while Jim had Shifted.

Jim huffed in frustration that he couldn’t speak in his Shifted form. So instead he shuffled so he was facing his Mate. And slowly he lifted his right paw and placed it atop Spock’s clasped hands, then gave out another huff, trying to project that he had quite liked Spock’s hands in his fur. But Spock just cocked his head at him. So Jim removed his paw and turning his head, he lowered his neck till his fur touched Spock’s hands.

Jim couldn’t help a little contented huff as once again long fingers carded themselves into his mane.

Jim had only really let his brother touch him in such a way. Others had tried, but it had made his skin crawl as bile rose in his throat. But now he knew what they tried to teach him in Shifter School. That the touch of his Mate would be welcomed, and welcome it he was. Much to his own surprise.

He closed his eyes as those hands that sent zings of pleasure through his body were soon moving up to his ears. He flicked his ears at the ticklish touch and laughed the only way his Lion form could, with huffs. Then his jaw was being held as thumbs rubbed the sides of his mussel. He opened his eyes then to find Spock looking at him, a slight smile on the Vulcan’s lips.

“Amazing.” Spock said reverently as his eyes seemed to be taking in ever stand of fur in Jim’s face.

Jim was sure that if he could blush in this form, he would, then one hand was being stroked up over his brow and back into his mane. “I know you have taken on the form of an Earth lion.” Spock was saying. “But somehow, irrationally, you remind me of the pet I had as a child.”

Jim blinked, from what little he knew of Vulcan’s. He never imagined that they had something as frivolous as pets.

“I-Chaya was a Sehalat… resembling an Earth bear.”

Jim snorted, he had been called many things, but never a bear and he wasn’t sure he liked it.

“Sahalat’s are very fierce, intelligent and brave creatures…” Spock whispered, as if answering Jim’s disapproval. “Much like I have been led to believe Earth Lions to be…”

Jim blinked at that as he felt a fondness come from the being in front of him. It was a light touch, like a light breeze running through Jim’s soul. He closed his eyes so he could feel it better, but as he did so, Spock began pulling his hands back.

“You are exhausted.” Spock said, his tone raised to a normal level, any emotion that might have been there gone. “Will you be sleeping in this form?”

For a moment Jim was baffled by the question, he hadn’t slept as a lion ever since they strapped a collar about his neck when he was a kid. But as he looked down at his paws, he was a little taken aback by the fact he really did have a choice. He looked back up at his Mate, but he couldn’t see any hint of disapproval at the idea, but neither was there approval. So, without thinking about it he just nodded his head.

“The bed will not be adequate for us both.” Spock was saying as Jim watched him get to his feet.

Jim felt a bolt of anxiety go through him, the bed really wasn’t big enough, but he couldn’t not sleep next to his Mate. But it seemed his fears were unfounded as Spock began pulling the sheets from the mattress.

“If you would move aside.” Spock asked him, so Jim obliged as he moved out of the way as Spock began laying out the bedding on the floor. “Will this be sufficient?”

Jim shrugged, it would still be a tight fit between the wall and the bed, so he moved in to sink down to his belly at the wall, resting his head on his forepaws as he watched Spock begin to remove his own clothes.

The Vulcan was very quick when it got to being naked Jim observed, and it wasn’t long before the Alien began laying down at his side.

Jim looked into the dark eyes, that hadn’t really looked away from him the whole time. Then Spock was reaching up a hand to rest on his mane. But it wasn’t enough, so Jim leaned forwards and licked his tongue across cool lips cheekily before rolling onto his side, his back pressed against Spock’s chest. He smiled to himself when he felt an arm force it’s way under his head, as Spock’s other arm reached over his shoulder till his hand was resting on Jim’s chest.

With a huff of breathe, Jim closed his eyes and let exhaustion pull him into sleep.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Spock meditated as he held his sleeping Mate.

Normally he would have prepared, as he always had, in solitary to meditate, but as he felt Jim’s quiet sleepy mind through the hold he had on the lion, he found it surprisingly easy to slip into his meditation.

But that only lasted five point three hours.

He had let himself drift into Jim’s dreams as the human drifted into his REM cycle. And he found himself running alongside his Mate as he ran free through fields of crops, or across dusty plains. There was a joy in the act that seemed to calm them both. But Spock didn’t let it break him from his own calm thoughts, just let it play through until Jim once again entered a deep sleep.

He slowly came out of his meditation as Jim came awake and aware.

“You should sleep a little longer.” Spock informed him, he was aware humans normal sleep patterns were from seven to eight hours.

Kirk began to move under his arm, and soon he was looking into strange blue eyes.

Spock got the impression that Jim was wishing him a good morning. “It is not yet morning.” He answered, which only got him a snort from the large cat at his side. “I do not find the humour.”

Then he once again witnessed Jim turn from a lion into a human. The process seemed at least twenty nano-seconds faster than it had previously. The process was still fascinating. Bone and skin seemed to morph like water over rocks, he was aware of his irrational romanticised notion of the transformation, but anything more analytical seemed inappropriate.

“But I’m awake now.” Jim was smiling at him.

Spock watched Jim look away as a slight blush came to the humans cheeks and he couldn’t help but reach out and touch them, amazed that they were actually a fraction warmer. Then he was aware of blue eyes looking at him and he found himself glancing down at full lips, they were slightly open and he couldn’t help but put his hand around the back of his Mates head, pulling those lips towards his own.

They were soft and warm beneath his own, he let his hand slip down over soft hair till his fingers pressed against the spot on his lovers neck that gave a little and sent the human beneath him arching up with a gasp.

The urge to meld again was strong, but he resisted, wanting this coupling to be a pure physical experience, knowing on some level that it was also what his Mate needed.

--

Spoke took a moment to come down from his orgasm.

He had taken his time with his Mate, mapping every inch of Jim with him mouth or fingers. Finding the places that brought out soft gasps or throaty groans. He had only paused when he had to retrieve lubrication from the bathroom, making sure he was within Jim’s line of sight as he did so. Then he had stretched and prepared his Mate, eventually flipping him onto his knees and moving in behind.

It had been the right move when Jim was eventually pushing back against him, groaning out his pleasure.

Spock was now laying atop his Mate’s back as he pulled air into his lungs, his hands still gripping Jim’s tightly, pinning him thoroughly to their impromptu bedding on the floor. He licked his teeth, tasting a metallic copper.

In his moment of release, he had bitten the back of Jim’s neck. As he looked now he could see his own teeth marks, still bleeding. He felt a smile of primal satisfaction come over him, remembering the way his Mate had screamed out his own release as Spock had bitten him. but it was soon replaced with guilt. He had mindlessly harmed his beloved.

He quickly pulled himself from deep within Jim’s body, making the Shifter groan as he fell to his side limply. Making Spock surge forwards to brush damp blond hair from his Mates face. Jim was covered in perspiration; his eyes seemed to be looking at nothing as he carried on panting, his whole body seemed limp.

“Jim?” He asked, worried his loss of control had harmed his lover more than just the bite he had inflicted.

Jim blinked once, then Spock was caught by blue eyes that looked up at him. “We are SO doing that again.” Jim gasped his breathing still irregular, a slight smirk on his swollen lips. “And we are gonna do it a LOT!”

“I hurt you…” Spock said numbly as he moved his hand from Jim’s check, over his shoulder to just above the damage he had caused.

Jim flipped a limp hand at him, “pfft… that was almost the best bit.” His smile had widened as his eyes once again lost focus. “Will it leave a scar?”

Spock frowned as he actually moved over his Lover to look. The marks were deep. “I do not know.” He confessed, noting the bleeding was slowing. “I am positive that the medical staff will be able to eradicate any scarring left…”  Suddenly Jim was pulling away as one of his hands came up to cover the wound.

“No.” Jim said vehemently. “I don’t want that… I… I…?”  

Spock did not like the look of insecurity that passed over his Mates expression, and he reached out to lay a hand on the arm that Jim still had up, protecting the wound at the back of his neck. “Please calm yourself.” He said. Recognising the small part of himself that was satisfied Jim did not want to have his mark removed, even if another part of himself did not want to be reminded of his more baser instincts. Surak’s teaching would not approve of such emotions. But Spock couldn’t deny how right it felt with the rare human before him right now. “It will still need tending too, nothing more.” That got him a small smile as Jim slowly let his hand fall away from his neck. Only to intertwine their fingers together.

“Thanks.” Jim said softly.

Without thinking to much about it, Spock found himself tugging on their hands as he pulled Jim up against himself, folding his arms around the stocky frame.

 

-- -- -- <(-_-)> -- -- --

 

“Bones… Please, I’m fine.” Jim was saying as Spock stood patiently at his Mates side as they stood in Hanger one.

Once a passenger ship had come within range, they were ferrying their wounded and the Vulcan refugees aboard for quicker passage to Earth, as the Enterprise limped back on its own.

Jim had insisted on seeing everyone off, and Spock had not resisted, even though he knew Jim was still not comfortable with being out in public. But Spock had also wanted to speak with his father before he left.

He saw his farther walking toward one of the shuttles and quickly turned to his Mate. “Can you spare me for a moment? I wish to talk to my father.” he asked.

Jim looked at him, then gave a hesitant nod as he squeased their hand before slowly letting go.

Spock leaned in, kissing the side of his lovers mouth. “I will stay within your sight.” he whispered for Jim’s ears alone before walking away, hearing doctor McCoy muttering about something derogatory.

“Father.” Spock called to his fathers retreating back. But when the man turned, he was obviously Vulcan, but Spock did not have the same psychic scene he shared with all Vulcan’s. Through there was something of blood with this man, it was not one he shared with his father, older brother or cousins… It took him a moment to realise the Vulcan stood before him felt like looking into a psychic mirror or sorts. There, but not.

“I am not out father.” The other Vulcan replied and Spock realised he was in fact talking to an alternate, and much older, version of himself. “There are so few Vulcan’s left, we cannot afford to ignore each other.”

With that, Spock suddenly realised why Jim had seemed so open and familiar with a mind meld. His older version had initiated such a contact, and as Spock let his mind filter through those memories, he gleamed the whole fragmented story from his lovers perspective.

“Then why did you send Kirk aboard, when you alone could have explained the truth?” he found himself asking.

His older version smiled. “Because, you needed each other. I could not deprive you of the revelation of all that you could accomplish together.” He said, “Of a friendship, that would define you both, in ways you cannot yet realize… or maybe you can now.” The other Vulcan’s smile widened a little.

Spock chose not to comment on his relationship as it now stood with the human. But something else irked him. “How did you persuade him to keep your secret?” he asked, keeping his emotions from his tone. He did not like the thought of being lied too, but quickly realised he had not had the time to ask the right questions. He would resolve the matter soon.

“He inferred that universe-ending paradoxes would ensue should he break his promise.” Replied in amusement.

Spock didn’t like the other Vulcan thinking his Mate was stupid, but he couldn’t believe his older self would become so immoral. “You lied.” He stated.

“Oh, I... I implied.” The other Vulcan replied.

“A gamble.” He tried to reason out the duplicity.

“An act of faith. One I hope that you will repeat in the future at Starfleet.”

Spock frowned. He hadn’t had time to give it much thought. But he replied with the most logical answer he could come up with. “In the face of extinction, it is only logical I resign my Starfleet commission and help rebuild our race.” But he couldn’t help looking over to where he could see his Mate, doctor McCoy still stood at his side. Jim was talking to some cadets who were part of the wounded contingent being transferred to the passenger ship. He was already aware of how his Mate would be reluctant to leave the Enterprise, never mind Starfleet all together. The duelling thoughts and emotions were enough to give him pause.

“And yet.” His older self interrupted his thoughts. “You can be in two places at once.” He said knowingly, “I urge you to remain in Starfleet…” and Spock saw him also glance over to Jim for a moment. “Though I strongly assume that will not be a problem.”

Spock had a moment of jealousy, knowing that this other being had been inside his Mates mind before himself, even if it was irrational, as it was himself, but a self with different memories and experience. The paradox was enough to give him want to meditate for a long period.

“I have already located a suitable planet on which to establish a Vulcan colony.” His older self was saying, his attention once again on him, and not his Mate. “Spock, in this case, do yourself a favour. Put aside logic. Do what feels right.” And his tone was tinged with something Spock couldn’t quite place, maybe sentimentality, or more disturbing, lost opportunities. Had this version of himself never actually knowing his James Tiberius Kirk the way he himself now did? But before he could form a question, the other Vulcan was already turning to leave.

“Since my customary farewell would appear oddly self-serving, I shall simply say good luck.” He said, giving a salute. Which Spock gave back automatically as the other Vulcan walked away.

Spock watched him bored the shuttle, still caught among his own warring thoughts.

“Spock?”

He turned to see his father coming up to him.

“Father.” He greeted. “I had wished to see you before you departed.” He said, remembering his original reason for leaving his Mates side.

“I saw you talking to the Ambassador.” His father stated.

“It was most enlightening.” Spock replied.

“Much.” His father acknowledged with a hint of sarcasm, something Spock had not heard from his father before. “He was aboard one of Starfleet’s rescue ships who managed to rescue more of our people.” He said. “He sought my audience while you were indisposed.”

Which brought Spock back to his original reason for seeking out his father. “I wish to introduce you to my Mate.” He said matter of fact.

His father gave him a nod. As they moved back to where Jim was talking to Doctor McCoy and the engineer who had boarded the Enterprise with him.

Once he was close enough, he reached out a hand, needing to connect physically with the man, instantly Jim turned to look at him, a smile on his handsome features and a wave of relief through their Bond, they had been separated to long so he moved his hand to the small of his lovers back, moving in close to his side.

“Jim. I wish for you to meet my father.” He said, turning to the Vulcan at his side. “This is Sarek, Vulcan ambassador to the Federation. Father, this is Captain James Tiberius Kirk, my Mate.”

“It’s nice to meet you.” Jim said and to Spock’s revelation he actually pulled off a perfect Vulcan salute, which his father returned.

“Live long and prosper, Captain Kirk.” His father greeted.

“Thanks.” Jim responded, and Spock could feel his awkwardness.

“I have heard it is you that helped facilitated in the rescue and evacuation of Vulcan before its demise.” Sarek said.

“I’m sorry I wasn’t quicker.” Jim replied and the guilt in their Bond had a bitter taste to it.

But before Spock could reassure his Mate his father spoke again. “My people owe you a great debt Captain Kirk, one we hope to repay one day. Without your quick insight the Vulcan race would not have survived. Even diminished as it is, we have a chance to rebuild we would not have had if not for you.” Then his attention moved from Jim to Spock himself. “Once we are settled, I would hope you will both visit… I am thinking Koon-ut-kal-if-fee is not necessary?”

Spock couldn’t stop the embarrassment at his father mentioning such a thing, especially in public with human’s present. “I do not believe so, no, father.” Spock responded as he felt Jim leaning a little harder against his side.

“And to other things?” His father asked vaguely.

Spock knew he father was referring to Pon Farr, and he fought down another shard of embarrassment. But the blood fever had not come upon his yet, if it ever would. “Not for the foreseeable future, if at all.”

His father gave him a nod; Spock’s mixed heritage meant there were a lot of unknowns. He might aspire to be a full Vulcan and could live like one. But his mother’s blood would always come out in the most unpredictable ways.

“I am expected aboard the shuttle.” His father said as he took a step back. “Captain Kirk, welcome to the family.”

“Oh, yeah, thanks.” Jim gave his most charming smile and the shock of joy he was releasing with his own empathy, Spock was sure all Vulcan’s in the hanger could feel.

Spock noticed an imperceptible smile on his fathers own features. Then he was giving another salute. “Farewell.”

Spock returned the gesture. “Live long and prosper, father.”

Then he watched his father striding away.

“What’s it feel like to meet your father in law?” Doctor McCoy was asking, amused by something Spock didn’t understand.

“Slightly odd.” Jim answered. “What’s ‘Coonun cal if fee’ anyway?”

“I will explain later.” Spock said stiffly. Letting his embarrassment and displeasure of discussing it in public seep through their Bond.

“Oh, is it something sexy?” The engineer, Mr Scott, said with a leer.

“Sounds more like marriage to me.” Doctor McCoy growled disapprovingly.

“Marriage!” Mr Scott said pointing between Spock and Jim. “I heard you two got Bonded or something… this mean we get a party? Only I need to find some whisky if there is!”

“Let’s just get home first.” Jim was chuckling. “We still have to face the registry… and see… what we do from there.”

Spock didn’t like the unease coming from his Mate.

“I’ll be invited though?” Mr Scott was insisting.

“Sure.” Jim laughed, “I think everyone on bored can come.”

“Can I be excused?” Doctor McCoy grumbled.

“Not a chance in hell!” Jim’s mood was lightening as he talked to the Doctor. “You will be my best man.”

Spock watched the doctor glare at Jim, before McCoy rolled his eyes and began to smile. “Sure kid… Oh look… injured people, excuse me.” Then he was walking away.

“Will there be a free bar?” Mr Scott was asking enthusiastically. “And sandwiches?”

Jim was laughing now. “For you, Scotty, anything!”

Spock was uncertain why such a food should be cause for such amusement, but before he could answer, more injured were coming through that took his Mates attention to other topics.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Spock sat besides his Mate, quietly reading his data-pad. He was scrolling through Jim’s medical records that doctor McCoy had hastily sent to him. This was the first opportunity he had found to actually study and commit everything to memory. And he was diligently. It was a list of everything his Mate was allergic too, from food, to dyes, right down to household chemical components. Along with each allergy was a list of symptoms and how to treat them in order of severity. At some point in Jim’s history, it had been found that some allergies could be nullified by him Shifting into a lion. Others were the Shift would allow urgent time for medical assistance to be sought.

The most interesting fact was that when Jim was Shifted, his tiger was immune to all his human allergies.

“Do you have to read that now?” Jim asked from his side.

“This is the perfect opportunity.” He answered.

They were sat in the San Francisco Shifter Registry. An old building set four point five miles from the Academy.

After they had returned to Earth space, and the Enterprise taken into dock for repairs, the entire crew had been interviewed and questioned about what had happened.

The whole of Starfleet was still reeling from its lose of ships and the greater loss of trained personnel and cadets that had all perished in the attack on Vulcan.

It had been devastating for his Mate to find out that the only people to survive the rescue fleet had been on the Enterprise. Any escape shuttle or pods, destroyed by the Narada or in Vulcan’s destruction.

It had been an intense two days, the only rest and personal time was when they had been allowed to retreat to Spock’s quarters. Where the nights were spent sleeping on Spock’s narrow bed.

The time had at least allowed Jim to become more comfortable with being around people again. Something that pleased his Mate.

“I agreed to visit Jon after this.” Jim was saying and Spock found himself reaching out one hand to stop Jim’s knee from nervously jumping up and down. “Then we have to go over to Chris’s place so I can get my stuff.” Jim said as he plucked at his borrowed shirt. “I don’t mind wearing your stuff, but I would like my own clothes.”

Spock frowned. He had taken a modicum of pleasure with his scent surrounding his Mate. But knew, rationally, that it was not always practical.

“Do you think there will be room at your place for all my books?” Jim mused as his knee began to jump again.

“Books?” Spock enquired as with one hand he shut his data-pad down, turning his full attention to his Mate and his irrational nervousness.

“Yeah…” Jim said distractedly. “I like real books, it’s the smell… and I like turning pages.” He shrugged to himself, then his blue eyes were looking at him, a daggers edge of self-deprecation coming through their Bond. “Stupid, hu?”

Spock squeezed the knee beneath his hand. “If you find pleasure in it, then no, it is not, as you say, stupid.”

Contentment spilled from Jim as Spock watched him bow his head a little, then blink up at him through his lashes. “Thanks.”

Spock felt lust warm his belly as he leaned toward his Mate. Pleased when Jim’s eyes opened wide, then he was kissing his Mate. It was still a pleasure to feel Jim submit to him.

“Mister Kirk, Spock?” A woman’s voice cut into their moment of passion.

Spock suppressed a growl as he pulled away from his Mate.

“Lets get this over with.” Jim was laughing as he began to stand up, pulling Spock with him by the hand.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Jim yawned to hide his annoyance. He could see Spock sat across the hall from him in another room. Having his own interview by the registry staff.

He knew they had ancient tech that could force the Bond he had formed with Spock apart. Or so the rumours went. It’s what he had been on edge about all morning. Only the kiss Spock had given him, less two hour ago had settled his nerves.

“So you believe your interest in Commander Spock happened when you saw him as he was accusing you of cheating?” Mister Oki asked. Jim really didn’t like the dismissive tone the Shifter Registry staff member had. He had heard of Bond’s forming over less.

He shrugged. “It formed when he nerve pinched me.” He answered, once again looking back over to his Mate. “Which just proves how good them god awful collars are.” He muttered sullenly, smiling when his Mate looked over to him.

“So he forced contact with you?” Mr Oki demanded.

“Look.” He said, turning his attention back to the wiry man sat across the table from him. “It might only have been a week…”

“Five days.” Mr Oki corrected.

Jim ground his teeth. “Five days… but I wouldn’t have it any other way!”

“From what we have learned you were both under a lot of stress.”

“So?” Jim answered sullenly. It wasn’t something he hadn’t thought himself.

“Did you try and reject him?” Mr Oki asked.

Jim sighed deeply as he looked at his hands, hating this man for making him doubt. “Yes I tried… but nothing happened… I…” He fisted his hands on his knees. He remembered his own empathy reaching out to Spock’s chaotic emotions, the need to sooth him had been almost overwhelming. Could a Bond really be formed on the back of such devastating tragedy?

“Vulcan’s are naturally telepathic.” Mr Oki was saying. “They are forbidden from having contact with un-Bonded Shifter for this reason. And as his race is now endangered, would he not want to help repopulate his species. A fact he can not do while Bonded to you?”

Jim closed his eyes. “He’s the best thing that ever happened to me…” he whispered. Desperately trying to blot out the uncertainty, they had discussed this.

But he couldn’t keep his step-fathers hatful voice from snidely entering his thoughts, corrupting them, twisting them into distrust and paranoia. Was he so desperate for someone to love him that he had misunderstood everything? Had he finally done something so unthinkably selfish and dragged Spock into it with himself?

He was well aware that he would have children by now with who knew how many woman, all hoping to get a Shifter from his geans. The registry had taken enough sperm from him before he joined Starfleet to populate a world. So the thought of children had never bothered him. He just wanted his ship the moment Chris Pike had suggested such a thing. And he had worked hard for it…

But what if Spock wanted to go back to his people? They hadn’t talked about it yet. They hadn’t had time to talk about much of anything.

He would have to give up everything he had worked so hard for if Spock wanted to leave Starfleet. The Shifter in him would deny his Mate nothing, even if it shattered his dream.

But could he let Spock be with another? Even if it was only for children? Even contemplating what they had forced him to do for years, leaving deposits in jars, made him sick to the stomach.

“Are you the best for him?” Mr Oki’s disdainful voice broke through the turmoil in his thoughts.

‘No.’ his step-fathers voice sneered at him inside his head.

Jim felt something cold stab through his heart like an icy dagger. He gasped at the physical pain of it as he clutched his chest with both hands. He opened his eyes to find his vision had gone black around the edges as he looked down at the table.

Then cool hands were on his face, forcing him to turn his head as it was tilted upwards.

He gasped again when he felt Spock’s mind touch his own, quickly replaying the last two hours they had been separated by distance.

“Calm yourself.” Spock’s composed voice reached his ears, that moments ago only heard the sound of his own frantic heartbeat. “Your aspirations parallel my own.” An image of himself sat in the captains chair flashed into his mind from Spock’s perspective, and the feeling of pride came with it. “At your side.”

Jim wanted that. Wanted his ship. His Captaincy. His Mate by his side. A Mate that had given him a freedom that only Bonded Shifter got to experience.

But what was he giving his Bonded in return, the poisonous thought shattered through him.

He felt exasperation sweep through him. Then foggy fragmented images of another time, another him and another Spock. Or Spock realising too late his true feelings for the human he called friend, of emotions he had tried to eradicate and ignore for so long, by the time he realised them, his Jim was already gone, and the grief was overwhelming. Then suddenly the images were cut off.

‘But I’ll do that to you… eventually!’ He thought into the void of his joined mind with his Spock, who’s cool hands pressed against the skin of his face hard.

“Will you deny me the time our other selves never had?” Spock sounded distressed.

‘We aren’t them…’ He tried desperately. Needing to believe, but not quite managing it.

“No.” Spock confirmed as Jim felt their foreheads being pressed together. He tried to blink the fog from his eyes, but realised tears had been obscuring his vision. “We will be together.”

‘But…’ Jim’s traitorous mind tried weakly, recalling the last thing Mr Oki had said to him.

He felt a bitter amusement come from his Mate. ‘Being a half breed, I am sterile.’

Jim felt shock go through him, as he managed to finally look into dark brown eyes mere centimetres from his own.

‘I was tested a long time ago.’ Spock confirmed. ‘It was one of the many reasons my betrothed did not consider me for mating.’

‘She was a purist?’ He asked.

‘Indeed.’ Spock answered. “Now, will you calm yourself?” he asked allowed. ‘I will walk besides you, wherever that may lead us.’

“Thanks.” Jim took a deep breath, letting it out slowly. ‘Sorry… I’m not normally so… emotional.’ He confessed.

‘I do not think that is the case.’ Spock replied in amused exasperation.

‘Fine… I don’t normally cry like a little kid.’ He amended with a smile of his own.

‘That I can accept.’ Spock acknowledged.

Then Spock was removing his hands from Jim’s face. Jim felt a moment of disappointment as the mental connection they had dulled a fraction at the loss. Then one of Spock’s hands was wrapping around his left wrist, squeezing slightly, which had the instant affect of calming him further.

He closed his eyes as he moved his face so their cheeks were resting together as he let his Shifter side submit to the pressure on his wrist, letting clenched muscles relax and his mind quieten.

He was aware of Spock lifting his hand, then Spock was rubbing two fingers against his own index and middle finger.

With a gasp Jim pulled his head back, looking down at their fingers. Then he was looking up into intense eyes looking down at him.

Jim let a crooked smile touch his lips as his belly squirmed pleasantly. “Really?” he asked in disbelief. He would never have guessed, something so innocuous could be such a turn on for his Mate.

‘Very much so.’ Spock replied as his finger swiped down Jim’s own. And Jim felt his borrowed pants getting tight. He couldn’t help it as he moved in to push his lips against his Mate’s cool ones.

“I’m sorry sir, he just got up and came here.” A woman’s soft whisper intruded their peace.

Jim pulled away from his Mate. He had forgotten about where they were and what they had been doing. But he wouldn’t be embarrassed about it, not with Spock’s hand on his wrist, or the Vulcan’s mind still pouring acceptance through their Bond.

“Your conclusion?” Mr Oki was asking the other woman.

“A Bond formed under difficult circumstances.” The woman was saying as Jim finally looked at her, aware of Spock getting to his feet at his side, from where he had been kneeling, but thankfully Spock did not let go of his wrist. “Not common, but not unheard of… I could find no dishonesty or ulterior motives for a Bond being formed.”

“You are a telepath.” Spock stated and Jim felt a wave of displeasure come from his Mate.

The woman nodded. “Only so much as I can only sense things from direct question.” She replied matter of fact.

“We do not have to inform you beforehand if we use someone with ESP.” Mr Oki said sharply. “The Registry has always run by its own rules.”

“Acknowledged.” Spock nodded. “But I have had quite enough of this interview, so has my Bonded. We have another appointment with Admiral Archer and my Mate wishes not to postpone it. If we could conclude this matter swiftly.”

Jim grinned up at his Mate, surprised by the feeling of annoyance. But he was glad Spock was as bored of all this as he was. It also helped that Mr Oki looked like someone had just puked on his shoes. It was also funny, because Jon wouldn’t give a crap what time they showed up.

“Tina.” Mr Oki asked the woman who had been interviewing Spock. “Can you please see to the rest of the Data.” He snapped as he stood up, then without another word, left the room.

Once the door closed, Tina turned to them with an apologetic smile. “I’m sorry.” She said as she went around the table to where the distasteful man had been sitting. “He has a thing about overseeing ALL Bond’s.”

“Then why did he leave?” Jim couldn’t help but ask. He wished he had spent his last two hours with her; it might not have ended so dramatically.

She gave a long suffering sigh. “He likes to vet all potential Bond Mates. It doesn’t help that he protested your joining Starfleet in the first place.” She looked at Jim. “He was slightly annoyed that his only influence was that the Academy was to keep all their ESP capable races and aliens from you.”

“They did a good job for three years.” Jim smiled as he squeezed Spock’s hand as he glanced up at the Vulcan. “But lady fate always likes throwing me a curveball.” He grinned when Spock looked down at him, one eyebrow raised in inquiry. “It’s a baseball reference.” He told his Mate, to answer the unspoken question. “Just means surprising outcomes, good or bad.”

Spock tilted his head in acknowledgment of the comment and Jim found it endearingly cute, which only exasperated his Mate and Jim was sure if Spock was human, he would be rolling his eyes.

“I would not.” Spock answered the unspoken observation, only making Jim chuckle some more.

“Would too.” Jim teased. Then he noticed Tina smiling at them both. “So... what else do we need to do?” He asked.

“We just need to fill in the missing Data, then get you both to sign some things, and we should be done… I’ll be sending the Acadamy your new information for chipping.”

Jim grimaced. “Another one?” He already had an ID chip in his arm from when he hit puberty.

“Sorry.” Tina said, sounding truly apologetic.

“Chip?” Spock asked, and he did not sound to happy about it.

“Yes. Mister Kirk already has one, as do all Shifter. It’s just to say who they are and what their Shifter status is.” Tina informed Spock. “And now you are both Bonded permanently, Mister Kirk will need an updated one, and you will have one stating you are Bonded to a Shifter, and who he is. It’s just for security, and if anything should happen to you, identification will be easier.”

“It’s a legacy from the Eugenics wars.” Jim sighed. “Just to prove I’m not genetically modified or something.”

“And I will be required to have one?” Spock asked.

“Um, yes… unless it goes again your culture?” Tina said as she turned to her data-pad and began typing.

“I do not think it will be a problem.” Spock replied. “If it is required.”

“Oh, that’s fine then… shell we get this over with?” She smiled at them.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

“I thought Jon when easy on you.” Jim was laughing as he was putting clothes into a travel bag.

Spock did not see it that way. He was sure he had been threatened with bodily harm if he ever let any harm come to the Shifter. Admiral Jonathan Archer might be retired and of advanced age, but he was still fit and Spock had no doubt he could perform his threat of castration if provoked.

“I thought he was rather direct.” Spock answered as he picked up another hard backed book from where it was stacked with others atop a dresser.

Jim’s room in Captain Pike’s home was surprisingly neat, but Jim’s possessions would fit into the back of their rented vehicle.

“You will probably get that from most of the Admiralty.” Jim chuckled. “Most of them like me.”

“You are very likable.” Spock said, putting the paper book amongst others in a box he was filling. Suddenly he felt arms around his waist and Jim’s body pressing up against his back.

“Is that so?” Jim’s breath ghosted across his left ear and he gasped as a jolt of desire made his heart jump in his side.

“No one’s home right now.” Jim was whispering, his hands fanning out over Spock’s belly. “And my beds large enough for two?”

Spock tried to control his breathing, to calm himself. “You wished to visit Captain Pike before dinner…” He reasoned.

“He won’t mind if we are a little late…” Jim was purring now and Spock could feel it through his back. Then one of the Shifters hands reached out and pushed his fingers over the back of Spock’s own that still held a book and Spock found himself gasping at the contact. “You don’t want to hold me down and take me?” Jim asked, his voice so soft as vague images began to seep through the Bond and Spock could control himself no longer as he turned in Jim’s arms, wrapping his own arms around his Mate as he began walking him backward towards the bed, once he felt Jim hit the side, he pushed his Mate back, letting him fall to the mattress, where he sprawled in a most fetching manner.

“Was this what you had in mind?” Spock asked as he began pulling his shirt off.

“Yeah…” Jim replied breathlessly and Spock watched as he licked his own lips.

“Good.” Spock said as he let his shirt fall to the floor as he pushed a knee between Jim’s, resting it on the mattress, forcing Jim’s legs apart a little more. Then he was leaning over his Mate, claming that soft mouth with his own.

 

-- -- -- <(^o^)> -- -- --

 

Spock watched as the younger version of Kirk accepted his award and became the relief of Captain Christopher Pike to captain the Enterprise. All the time, his younger self stood just behind Jim’s left shoulder.

From what he had learned from his father, and with a thorough search of the archives, he had learned why this Jim seemed so different to his own.

It wasn’t just that the Jim of this timeline was filled with uncertainty and doubt of his own self worth underneath his brash exterior. Some thing that his Jim very rarely had. His Jim was self assured and confident. But he had known Jim later in his life, and he had not suffered as this Jim had. Something that grieved Spock, knowing he had helped in the making of the man he was looking down on now. He was certain, that if George Kirk had lived, Jim would be the man Spock had known.

But that wasn’t the only handicap this Jim in this timeline had dealt with.

It had been fascinating to learn about the Shifter trait that would occur among the human race. But it was just another difficulty Jim had overcome.

He witnessed Jim turn to his younger self and take Spock’s hand as they then both turned to the crowed gathered in the hall below to a standing ovation.

He couldn’t help but feel a little resentful, that the two men had found each other so quickly, and of his own blindness to what he could have had with his own Jim. But the resentment melted away as soon as it had come.

Both men where different to what he had been and known.

Jim was battling with his past to become the strong man he would no doubt become. And Spock was dealing with the loss not only his mother so soon, but the whole of Vulcan.

Spock knew they would heal each other with time.

“Live long and prosper.” He uttered down to the two young men as he then turned and walked away.

 

-- -- -- <(^_^)> -- -- --

 

Epilogue I:

 

Spock had donned his robe, lit his candles, turned off the overhead lights in the cabin that he shared with Jim and had settled down to Meditate.

Usually Jim was either reading in bed or more times, sleeping, when he chose to have a moment peace, to settle his thoughts and put them in order.

But tonight, Jim had been following him about in his Shifted form. And now, Spock found the large lions head on his lap. Jim had flopped down in front of him, then huffing, had rolled himself onto his back. All four paws were now in the air as Jim slept.

Spock sighed, knowing he would not get much meditation done as he found his fingers sinking into Jim’s impressive mane. The long rough fur felt sinfully pleasurable across the sensitive parts of his hands. With his wandering fingers he felt and heard Jim begin to purr from deep within his larger lion’s chest. It was a sound that could always sooth Spock, and quickly he found himself slipping into a meditative state. His mind brushing against Jim’s sleeping one.

He wasn’t aware of how long he was under, or when Jim had entered his REM cycle. But the dreams were soft and warm nonsense, of peace and happiness, glimpses of smiles and kind brown eyes, comforting safe places filled with the soothing colours of dusk or dawn.

The only sound within the dream was a soft muttering, and under that a soft reassuring deep purr. But just as Spock felt his own mind begin to shut down into sleep, one word shattered through their shared dream.

T’hy’la

Instantly Spock opened his eyes to find himself staring at a candle guttering across the room.

Such a simple phrase, but one that would explain his instant attraction to his Mate, and in return, the reason Jim would not have been able to reject their Bond when it had first been formed.

Friend, Brother, lover.

Everything they were together.

He looked down at his Mate and found crystal blue eyes gazing up at him.

‘That simple.’ Jim stated. As always when Jim was Shifted, their telepathy was stronger in lieu of not being able to form physical speech.

“It would seem so.” He answered.

It really was that simple, Jim had been right when he mentioned fate, however illogical that was.

‘Finished meditating?’ Jim was asking, like the matter was solved.

Spock nodded as he removed his hands from deep in Jim’s mane. Then he watched his Mate roll over and get to his feet.

‘Bed…’ Jim yawned, his large white teeth flashing in the candle light.

Spock got to his own feet. “Stay as you are?” he asked as he began to remove his meditation robe, the thought of fur against his skin seemed most appealing.

Jim gave a huffed growl. ‘Fine with me, I’m still sore.’ He muttered into their Bond.

Spock would have apologised, if, in face he had been repentant for their earlier love making. Instead he just lifted the covers of their bed, so his Shifter could follow.

 

-- -- -- <(^o^)> -- -- --

 

Epilogue II:

 

Leonard was getting annoyed. Jim should have been in for a check up an hour ago. And Leonard had better things to do than chase the stupid captain down. They might have only been wandering about in space for four months, but he had told Commander Spock about the appointment, so he at least assumed the green goblin would have dragged the Shifter in already!

“Bridge!” He barked into the comm.

/“Here, Doctor McCoy.”/ Uhura answered immediately.

“Is that stupid cat on the bridge?” He growled.

/“No doctor.”/ Uhura answered with amusement. /“As per your orders, he hasn’t been here since you let him out of sickbay last shift.”/

“Can you tell me where he is?” He demanded, then waited for her reply.

/“He is in his quarters, Doctor, would you like me to hail him?”/ She asked, though there was something else in her voice he really didn’t care about right now.

“Thanks. I do it myself” He snapped before hanging up and dialing through to Jim’s personal quarters. Tapping his foot in annoyance as he waited for him to respond. He was just about to get up and march on over when the com connected.

/“Spock.”/ Came the Vulcan’s calm voice.

“Where’s the Captain?” Leonard barked into the com, he should have known better, after all the two were more inseparable than ever, especially if Jim got himself hurt, which was starting to feel like an occupation for him. Who knew someone wearing perfume could have given him such a reaction.

/“He is currently indisposed.”/ Spoke answered and if Leonard wasn’t mistaken, he sounded a little out of breath.

“Well make him NOT indisposed!” He growled. “He was meant to be in the infirmary an hour ago for a check up!”

/”Spock! Not there… oh god!”/

Leonard felt his eyes almost pop out of his head as he heard Jim’s vague voice in the background.

/”Not so dee… shit! Deeper!”/ Jim was pleading.

/”If you would make up your mind.”/ Spock sounded a little annoyed. /”This would go a lot easier.”/

Leonard tried not to chock. He was very well aware of what they were bloody doing,

/”Shut up and fuck me!”/ Jim demanded, then he let out a yelp.

/”Did I hurt you?”/ Spock sounded concerned.

“If you did I’m coming over there right bloody now!” Leonard yelled. “For heaven sake I just stitched him up the other day you green blooded devil!”

/”Bones?”/ Jim suddenly gasped, all amours’ panting gone.

Leonard smirked evilly,

/”Apparently you missed your sickbay check in.”/ Spock intoned.

/”Why didn’t you tell me!”/ Jim was starting to sound distressed.

/”You insisted that we…”/

/”Hang up!”/ Jim snapped, then he was letting out a long drawn out groan of pleasure. /”Bones YOU hang up! Stop that… Cheater, that’s not fai… Oh… my… G… uuuuggggg”/

/”We will be along shortly.”/ Spock said, then the line went dead.

“Is the captain on his way?” Nurse Kim asked softly, looking at him in concern. Leonard hoped she hadn’t herd all that.

“Eventually.” He chuckled. He would have a particularly long list of hypo-sprays waiting.

 

The End

 

Of this part ^_^