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Sentinels Future and Past

Chapter Text

Spock was in his quarters meditating when his heard voices. He was startled by this as he was alone in his room. The sounds were getting louder and louder by the second. There were several different voices he could discern, but he was unable to determine what each was saying. As time passed, each became more discernable, and he could separate each voice from the whole.

“He’s new,” one voice said.

“Brilliant deduction there Jackson,” another said.

“It was a statement, Rodney, not a deduction. Who is he?”

“How the hell would I know, I have been here for as long as you have. Maybe Blair would know. When is he supposed to arrive anyway?” the voice that answered Rodney moaned.

“When he gets here. Should we talk to him?”

“Hey, you with the pointy ears, what’s your name?”

Spock opened his eyes and blinked. He was not in his quarters but a blue tinge forest. This was an extraordinary vision he was having. His meditations usually did not come with images. Perhaps it was a byproduct of his hybrid heritage; he would have to explore this at a more convenient time.

“Maybe he doesn’t speak English, Rodney.”

Spock blinked again and decided it might be wise to answer, “My name is Spock. Where am I?”

“Spock, huh, you are in the spirit realm or some such new age mumbo jumbo that Jackson and Sandburg are trying to teach me.”

“Spirit realm?” Spock questioned the other two men.

“Yeah, I’m Daniel Jackson, by the way, and this is Rodney McKay.”

Before Spock could inquire further, another figure appeared in his field of vision. He raised his eyebrow at the newcomer; he had curly hair long enough to be pulled back and placed in a ponytail, like Nyota’s.

“Hello. Cool, we have a new Guide,” the newcomer said. Spock was unsure how the temperature was related to guiding anything new, but before he could question anything another man appeared. This man was silver-haired and slightly older than the other three in this vision forest.

“Hey, Jethro,” the newcomer said to the newest of their group.

Spoke was very confused, believing he had a vision, he attempted to bring himself out of his meditative state. Closing his eyes, he slowed his breathing and heart rate; drifting off, he could hear the voices become further and further away from him until they stopped. He opened his eyes to find his quarters as he had left them and that he had been meditating for nearly four hours. Being Vulcan, he was not easily startled by many things, but he seemed to have lost track of how long he had been meditating. Typically, he would have been aware of the passage of time, even as he meditated, but for some reason, he could not discern that had not happened.

Putting his meditation supplies away and heading towards the bathroom facilities he shared with his captain. He ensured that the lock on the Captain’s side was engaged and he removed his robe to take a quick sonic shower. He had never been shaken by meditation before, but tonight he was uncertain as to why he would have had a vision. Perhaps he would contact his father on New Vulcan and inquire as to this new situation. It would be logical to determine if his father knew of other Vulcan’s that had visions while meditating. Perhaps it was unique to him, being only half Vulcan. He finished with his shower and returned to his quarters; he slipped into his bed and quickly drifted off to sleep.

******

“Who was that guy?” Jethro asked.

“Said his name was Spock. I think he was an alien,” Rodney said, shrugging his shoulders.

“An alien?” Blair questioned.

“Well, he wasn’t human. He had pointy ears and green colored skin. He wasn’t a Wraith, thank whatever,” Rodney huffed.

“We didn’t get to ask him much else,” Daniel chimed in.

“He’ll be back,” Blair said, confidently. Turning towards his fellow guides, he began their daily training exercised to help them work with their Sentinels.

Chapter Text

Spock awoke at his usual time. He readied himself for his shift on the bridge that day. The previous night’s meditation vision was still on his mind, but would not prevent him from performing his duties. He would request information about the visions from his father, during their next communication. He left his quarters and headed to find breakfast. He retrieved his food and turned to find Nyota beckoning him to the table she was sitting at. He joined her with his food.

“Good morning, Nyota,” Spock said; he had been trying to improve his interpersonal skills by experimenting with different salutations.

“Good morning, Spock. Did you sleep well?” Nyota asked.

“Yes, I did, Nyota. How did you sleep last evening?” Spock knew that this type of communication was important to humans; he believed they called it small talk. He did not see the need for it, but his girlfriend was happier when he showed some effort in conversing with her outside of their duties.

“Fine,” she smiled at him.

After they finishing eating their food they left the room at the same time heading towards the bridge, for their shifts.

******

Spock had finished his bridge duty an hour ago and was now in one of the science labs studying the latest samples from their last mission. He had just started to run a new experiment with the samples when the door to his lab opened. He turned to find Captain Kirk watching him.

“Captain?” Spock asked.

Jim looked around the room as if he was searching for something or someone. He appeared to not have noticed Spock at first.

“Jim?” Spock tried again, this time catching his captain’s attention.

“Spock… um… sorry. I just thought I saw something enter your lab. It’s not possible.”

“What is not possible, Captain?”

“Uh… never mind. I must be tired,” Jim gave him that cocky smile of his.

“Of course, Captain. Is there anything else I might be of assistance to you?”

“Oh, yeah, I thought maybe we could play chess one night, soon.”

“That would be acceptable. Perhaps tomorrow evening?”

“It’s a date,” Jim said, as he turned and left Spock’s lab.

******

Spock announced his presence at Nyota’s cabin door; her door opened and Spock entered, as he had done on many occasions, to find his girlfriend on her bed reading her padd. She gave him her most beautiful smile and he approached the bed leaning down to give her a human style kiss. She returned the kiss and raised her hand and extended her index and middle fingers to him. He copied her and gently rubbed their fingers together as he had done on numerous occasions, but this time instead of sparks and a warm feeling, he felt nothing. No, that was not quite right; he did feel something, it was a sense of disloyalty. It was not logical; he had not been disloyal to Nyota and he was certain that she had not been disloyal to him. He pulled back from the kiss and realized he was not feeling the passion he normally felt in her presence.

Nyota noticed Spock’s reluctance, “what’s wrong?”

“I… I do not know. I care for you Nyota, but when I kissed you it felt different. It is not logical.”

Nyota gave him an understanding smile, “Spock, feelings are not logical. Can you try to explain the difference you felt?”

“I…,” not wanting to damage their relationship, he said, “perhaps I should meditate this evening. I will join you for breakfast tomorrow.” With that he turned and left a very confused Nyota in his wake.

Chapter Text

Spock returned to his quarters from Nyota’s, not to meditate, but to contact his father. He placed the communication request and waited for a response. As he waited for a connection to his father on New Vulcan, he considered all the evidence he had accumulated during the day.

He cared for Nyota; however, when intimately engaged with her during the evening he felt a sense of betrayal. He could not place why or how, but he knew he was betraying someone by being with Nyota. While he was thinking about Nyota, Spock’s keen hearing picked up what sounded like a whistle; turning in the direction of the sound he did not quite believe what he was seeing.

It was not logical or possible for him to see a weasel; how could a small animal such as that be on Enterprise and in his quarters, without the ship sensors detecting the creature. Before he could proceed with capturing the animal, it disappeared through the wall between his room and his captain’s quarters. Perhaps he should seek the medical attention of Doctor McCoy, but before he could contact the man in question his monitor beeped, signaling a communication.

Turning to his desk, he accepted the communication and was gratified to see his father on the screen.

“Father,” Spock said.

“Spock, my son. Is there a pressing issue you wish to discuss with me?”

“Yes. I wish to seek your guidance.”

Sarek just raised an eyebrow at his son; Spock had not sought out his father’s advice for many years.

“Have you ever experienced visions while meditating?”

Sarek attempted to school his surprise; that was not the question he was expecting. He had believed that his son would seek his advice regarding bonding with the human communications officer, Lieutenant Nyota Uhura.

“No,” Sarek said.

“I see.”

“However, that does not mean it is unheard of in Vulcan experience or history. In the time before, Surak, it is believed that many Vulcans could experience visions similar to human dreaming.”

“Fascinating.”

“Have you been experiencing visions while you meditate, my son?”

“Once.”

“Once does not provide sufficient data to consider creating a hypothesis, Spock.”

“I had not yet created a hypothesis, Father; I was gathering more data points and will attempt to meditate again this evening to determine if my previous experience was an aberration.”

“Live long and prosper, my son.”

“Peace and long life, Father,” Spock said, raising his hand in the ta’al as he disconnected from his father.

Spock needed to meditate. It was logical that if he was having visions he could use meditation to gather more data and perhaps answers. Taking his usual position on his floor in front of his firepot he slowly entered a meditative state.

The voices once again assaulted his hearing. Opening his eyes, he found the same four men from before, staring at him.

“I told you he would be back,” the curly long haired human said to his companions; to Spock he asked, “your name is Spock, right?”

“It is.”

“Great. So, I think you must be a new Guide,” the man said.

Spock just raised an eyebrow at the man’s statement.

“You don’t have a clue about what we are talking about, do you?” the man with glasses questioned.

“An accurate assessment.”

“What species are you, because you sure aren’t human,” the man with thinning hair huffed.

Spock would have answered, but he was unsure if this would be a violation of the Prime Directive or not. He decided to ask a question of his own, “it would be logical for introductions.”

“Oh, sorry man. I’m Blair Sandburg,” the one with curly hair said.

“Doctor Daniel Jackson,” the man with glasses waved at him.

“Doctor Rodney McKay,” the slightly whiny one, well, whined.

“Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs,” the oldest of the group grunted.

Spock inclined his head to the four other men.

“Now that we all know each other; what species are you?” Rodney demanded.

“If I were to divulge that information, I would be breaking regulations; however, if I were able to determine that those regulations do not apply, I could respond to your enquiry.”

“Okay, shoot,” Blair said.

“It would be illogical to harm those who I wish to ask questions of,” Spock stated.

“No, he means ask your questions,” Daniel snickered.

“Ah. You have mentioned Guides and have alluded to my being one of these Guides. What exactly is a Guide?”

“Well, we help guide our Sentinels and keep them grounded by bonding with them.”

Spock kept his frustration hidden, as they did not quite answer his question. “What is a Sentinel?”

“Back up, do you have Guides and Sentinels where you come from?” Blair asked.

“As I have indicated, I am not familiar with either Guides or Sentinels in the manner you appear to be indicating. It would be logical to assume from my questions that I am unfamiliar with them.”

“Well, we believed that Sentinels come from a time in our history when humans needed protectors for their tribes. The Sentinel has heightened senses; sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch. There are some Sentinels that have a sixth sense, but they are extremely rare. Guides are those of us who help the Sentinels stay on track and help them by preventing them from zoning. We bond with our Sentinels and in doing so, we give them something to focus on. We become their focal point and their anchor in the world,” Blair said, in a rush.

Spock digested the information. If what Blair had said was true, then logically he could not be a guide.

“You are mistaken, because I could not be a Guide.”

“Why would you say that?” Daniel asked.

“I have all those heightened senses that you spoke of, so it is logical to assume I am not a Guide. Also, I am no longer bonded to anyone.”

“Wait, you have heightened senses?” Blair asked.

“Yes, but they do not come from being a Sentinel. They come from my Vulcan heritage,” Spock said, he was beginning to believe he was having a delusional episode, so it would not matter if he broke the Prime Directive.

“Vulcan, never heard of them and I told you he was an alien,” Rodney said, smugly.

“That doesn’t make sense, McKay. We have never found Sentinels or Guides off of Earth. There has to be a connection.”

Spock decided to wake himself up, but was stopped by the appearance of the weasel he had seen in his quarters earlier. This time, the creature was accompanied by a badger. The weasel approached Spock, raised an eyebrow at him; Spock, in turn, lifted one eyebrow back. He shook himself when he realized that he was having a staring contest with an animal; a figment of him mind, he hesitated to say imagination. The badger approached the weasel and nudged him; the weasel turned and slinked away from Spock. The badger smirked at him and in that moment it reminded him of his Captain. “Badgers do not smirk,” he told the creature. The badger for his part, smirked even bigger, turned and found the weasel. The two animals curled around each other, not far from the small group he had been conversing with.

“Your spirit animal,” Blair stated.

“Fascinating, but highly unlikely.”

“He’s worse than you, McKay,” Daniel said.

“It is illogical to think that any of what I am experiencing is real.”

Blair sighed, how was he going to convince this guy that he was a Guide. Maybe he could convince him to try and find his Sentinel. He didn’t even know where the guy was; that was it, if the guy didn’t think it was real he might just explain when he was from and maybe they could use that information to make him believe.

“All right, if this isn’t real, then you can tell us where you are from.”

Spock opened his mouth to argue, but instead said, “I am from the planet Vulcan. I am currently residing on the USS Enterprise. I am the First Officer and Science Officer of the starship.”

“What year is it?” McKay asked, curious about the mention of starships.

“2260.”

“Fuck, he’s from the future,” Daniel said.

“Yes, but perhaps not our future,” McKay pondered.

“Clarify,” Spock said.

“Stargate.”

“I do not know what that is, Doctor McKay.”

“Look in your historical information and see if you find any references to it, but a Stargate is a device that allows for travel from one planet to another via a stable wormhole. If you are telling the truth you are two-hundred fifty-six years in the future,” Rodney stated.

“Fascinating, the energy and physics behind this device would be interesting to study. If I am understanding you, then all of this is real; however, I am not from your universe, but a completely different one,” Spock stated, not certain if he believed any of it, but willing to play along, as the humans would say.

“Well at least he is not an idiot. He might be able to actually keep up with me,” McKay snarked.

“McKay,” Gibbs snapped, “if he isn’t human, how can he be a Guide?”

“I don’t know,” Blair said.

“I am half human. My mother is human, logically, I must have inherited it from her.”

“That doesn’t explain his heightened senses; it’s almost like he is both a Sentinel and a Guide,” Daniel wondered.

“My heightened senses are normal for a Vulcan. I am also stronger than a human.”

“Huh, okay, now we just have to help you find your Sentinel. Do you have any idea who it could be?” Blair asked.

“Perhaps. How would I determine if I am correct?”

“You might feel a pull towards the person or they might start to show odd behavior. You will need to learn how to help your Sentinel stay focused and grounded; normally, I would hand you our Guide Handbook, but I can’t exactly ship it to you. We’ll have to do this all here, in the spirit world.”

“I have an eidetic memory; anything you inform me of, I shall remember.”

“Cool,” Blair said.

Realizing that his meditation had exceeded its normal time parameters, Spock began to bring himself out of it; he listened to his fellow Guides trying to call him back, but he ignored them, knowing he would be late for his shift, if he continued to stay.

Chapter Text

The day had been long and tedious, but finally it was over and he was on his way back to his quarters with the Captain at his side. They were to play chess in the evening after they had dinner. They broke apart to change into different clothing for their evening frivolities. Nyota was aware that Spock would not be spending the evening with her; she would be spending it with Gaila, for a girl’s night out.

He would speak to Nyota the following day and terminate their relationship. He, perhaps, was not completely convinced about being a Guide, but he was certain that he held feelings towards his Captain that were not entirely platonic. He would speak with Captain Kirk during their chess game this evening, about his feelings.

******

Spock was pondering his next move, when he heard a quiet whisper coming from Kirk.

“No, not possible. Not real. It’s not real. Not real. Not real…”

“Captain?” Spock said, concern lacing his voice.

“Sorry, Spock. I must be more tired than I thought.”

“Captain… Jim, what is not real?”

“What?”

“You said that it was not possible and something was not real. What was it?”

Kirk sighed, he did not wish to speak of his sleep deprived hallucinations to his first officer, but he was aware of Spock’s relentlessness when it came to his health, both mental and physical. “When I get really tired, I begin to hallucinate. It has happened to me since I was a kid.”

“Hallucinate, how?”

“Um… sometimes I hear things that could not be possible for me to hear. Sometimes I see animals that could not be in my room. It usually is a badger. I should probably get to bed.”

A badger, Jim has seen a badger. Could it be true that Jim was his Sentinel? Spock tried to keep the shock from his expression, in a near whisper, he said, “I… I had wished to speak to you this evening, in regards to a potential situation that has occurred recently, to me.”

“What is it?” Jim said, concern for his first officer clear in his voice.

After a brief hesitation, Spock answered, “I have been having visions while meditating; in these visons I… have meet with four other people in a blue jungle. I have also seen a weasel, both on the ship and in my visions.”

Kirk blinked rapidly at his first officer, “um… wait, did you say a weasel? Does this weasel like to arch its eyebrows at you? Not that weasels actually have eyebrows.”

“You have seen him?” Spock asked, intrigued.

“Yeah, he is usually accompanied by the badger. I was told they were stress induced hallucinations, due to sleep deprivation, and to seek professional help when they appear.”

“These visions I am having are not figments of my mind,” Spock said, with wonder in his voice.

“I don’t think so. I’ve never heard of two people having the exact same visions. Have you seen the badger?”

“Yes, he smirked at me and then curled around my weasel.”

“Curled around your weasel?” Kirk asked.

Spock instantly realized his mistake, “I am sorry Captain. I have had two encounters within the blue jungle. While on the last visit, I was informed that the weasel is my spirit animal and that I am a Guide.”

“A guide to what?”

“To my Sentinel,” Spock said, as he reached across the chess board to touch Jim’s hand.

Jim looked to his hand and then back at Spock; he felt a jolt of electricity run through him at the touch. Jim was a curious bastard and could not resist a new puzzle that was placed before him, “I’m your sentinel? What the hell is a sentinel, Mister Spock?”

Spock removed his hand from Jim’s, he placed both of his hands on his knees attempting to control the shaking that had started when he first touched Jim. Breathing deeply, “I was informed that a Sentinel is a person with heightened senses. Five to be exact; hearing, sight, taste, touch, and smell. A Guide, is an anchor to a Sentinel. The two individuals bond and the Guide is able to focus and ground their Sentinel.”

“Fuck,” Jim swore, “I’m not crazy. They never believed me. They said it was… even my own mother didn’t believe me.”

“Jim?”

Jim closed his eyes; enjoying Spock’s use of his first name, he began to speak, “It… it started when I was really little. I must have been… um… around two or three. I started to see this badger and he would cuddle with me in my bed when I would have nightmares. Sometimes I would cry because things were too loud, but they told my mother that it was a temporary reaction and probably was related to my birth. It… something happened and it went away for a long time, but after…” Jim swallowed, “after Khan, it started again.”  

Spock reached across to touch Jim’s hand again, but Jim pulled away from him.

“Spock… I know that my reputation is one of being promiscuous, but I won’t come between you and Uhura. I have never done that and I won’t start now.”

Spock bowed his head, trying to compose himself, he asked, “if Nyota and I were not in a relationship… would you consider a relationship with me?”

“Yes, but I won’t be the reason that you and Uhura break-up. If you plan on breaking-up with her, just so you can be with me, forget it.”

“I understand, Captain,” distancing himself from the hurt that he did not want to feel. He stood, “I believe I shall retire for the evening, Captain,” Spock said, as he turned and left Jim’s quarters.

Chapter Text

Now that Jim had a name for his condition, he began a search on ways to control or cure it. He had been cruel to Spock when he had turned him down, but Jim did not poach other people’s significant others. Jim believed that Uhura was a good match for Spock and he would not interfere with that; if Spock and Uhura broke-up on their own that would be different, but Jim would not be ruled by some supposed bond they had.

He covertly began a search for any information regarding sentinels and guides, but found absolutely nothing. There had to be some historical record, even if it was from mythology, but nothing. He was just trying to decide where to search next, when Uhura contacted him, “Captain, you have a call from Starfleet Headquarters.”

“Patch it through to my ready room, please, Lieutenant.”

“Yes, sir.”

Jim waited for the connection to be made and was unsurprised to find Admiral Barnett.

“Admiral,” Jim said.

“Kirk, I have new orders for you.”

“Of course, sir.”

“I need you to divert to Starbase Three and collect five Vulcan’s that need to be transported back to New Vulcan.”

“Sir, isn’t there a ship that is closer?”

Barnett sighed, “look, Kirk, all I know is that the Vulcan’s requested that you come assist them. We do have other ships, but for some reason they insisted that it had to be your ship.”

“Understood, sir,” Jim said, as the communication ended.

Jim left his ready room and entered the bridge to order Sulu to set a new course.

******

It had been exactly two weeks since Spock informed Captain Kirk of their connection. Spock had avoided meditating, it was illogical; however, he was concerned that he would return to the blue jungle. He had yet to end his relationship with Nyota, but after this evening that would no longer be an issue.

He entered his quarters to find Nyota already there waiting for him; he had wished to speak with her in her quarters, but she was insistent that they meet in his.

“Nyota,” Spock said.

“Spock.”

“I believe we need to speak about our relationship.”

“Yeah… um… I think that we have different ideas of where our relationship is going,” she smiled sadly at him.

“Nyota, I never intended to mislead you. I had intended to ask you to bond with me; however, I have discovered new information regarding our potential compatibility,” he said all in a rush, not wishing to hurt her feelings, as his mother would have said.

“You’re in love with someone else, aren’t you?”

Spock’s eyes widened, “I… I…” he stuttered.

“It’s all right Spock. I’m a big girl and I really wasn’t ready for you to ask me to bond. To be honest Spock, I don’t know if I ever would be ready for that,” she smiled at him, sadly.

“Nyota…”

She held her hand up to stop him from continuing, “Spock, bonding with a Vulcan is permanent. I know this. I also know that it would give you a connection into my thoughts and feelings; I’m not certain that I would or could ever be comfortable with that.”

“I understand, Nyota.”

“Here,” she held her hand open to reveal the small blue stone neckless he had gifted her.

“No, I gave that to you. It was meant for you and you alone.”

“Spock…”

“Nyota, think of it as a gift of friendship, because that is what it is. I do still think of you as a friend and I always will.”

Nyota closed her hand and closed the distance between them; rising on her tip-toes, she kissed his cheek and whispered, “thank you, Spock.”

******

Jim sat on his bed, stunned; he had never intended to listen in on Spock and Nyota’s conversation, but his hearing had picked up what sounded like Uhura dumping Spock. He had continued to listen to the conversation and he felt like an ass for having done so. He started to stare at his hands thinking about what he should do with his newfound knowledge. He noticed a small blemish on the skin of his hand and became intrigued by it; he continued to look deeper and deeper, losing himself in it, to the point that he did not hear his door chime.

******

McCoy was pissed. He was very pissed; he had been ringing Jim’s door chime for nearly ten minutes. Jim had asked him to meet here tonight. Stepping away from the door and approaching a ship computer access panel, he pushed the button to ask the computer where the hell his captain was.

“Captain Kirk is located in the Captain’s quarters,” the monotone computer voice said.

Now McCoy wasn’t just pissed, he was concerned. He tried Jim’s door chime again and when there still wasn’t an answer, he unlocked the door using his medical override. He entered Jim’s quarters to find him on his bed just staring at his hands. He approached his friend and called his name.

“Jim.”

There was no response from the other man. McCoy placed his hand on Jim’s shoulder to shake his friend and still he did not respond.

“Fuck, Jim. What the hell is going on?” he said, shaking his friend and captain, but there still wasn’t a response.

“Dammit, Jim. This is not what I want to do tonight.”

Unable to rouse his friend and captain turned towards the communication unit near Jim’s bed to contact sickbay for a stretcher and assistance. Just as he reached for it his hand was stilled by the sound of Spock crouching and speaking to Jim.

Chapter Text

After Nyota left his quarters Spock decided he needed to meditate. He quickly set everything up and slipping on his meditation robe, he began the relaxation process and slipped into a meditative state. Hearing the sound of familiar voices made him open his eyes; Blair was smiling at him.

“It’s good to see you again Spock.”

“It is… acceptable to see you as well.” Spock was not happy to have returned to this place. He was irritated that he continued to find himself in this place every time he tried to meditate.

“Did you find your Sentinel,” Blair asked.

“Yes,” Spock said, trying to keep the irritation out of his voice.

“I take it that it didn’t go well.”

“No, it did not,” Spock snapped, unable to continue to keep his emotions under control.

Blair sighed, he could see the strain that the situation was taking on his fellow Guide. He wished there was a way for him to actually meet in person to help, but that was impossible.

“What can I do to help?” Blair asked.

“I do not know,” Spock said, sounding defeated.

“What did your Sentinel say?”

“He… he believed me; however, he turned down any idea of bonding in anyway.”

Blair thought about that for a bit; he was surprised that the Sentinel actually turned down a bond, most jumped on it as soon as it left the Guides mouth. Before he could offer some advice or ask another question Gibbs showed up.

“Hello Jethro,” Blair said.

“Blair, Spock,” Gibbs greeted.

Spock just nodded his head in Gibbs’ direction, in way of greeting. He did not want to speak to anyone right now.

“Jethro, Spock’s Sentinel turned down bonding with him, perhaps you could speak to him about your own experience.”

Gibbs hated to talk about feelings, but he could tell that the other Guide was in pain and didn’t even know it yet.

“Sure. When I first found Tony, he was a bit wild and terrified of any form of commitment,” as Gibbs started to speak, Spock lifted his head to look at him. “Tony had a really crappy childhood and his parent’s relationship wasn’t the ideal one that Sentinels and Guides should have,” he paused in his story, seeing that Spock had a question.

“What is an ideal relationship for Sentinels and Guides? I have been unable to find any information about Sentinel/Guide phenomena in our history banks.”

“A heathy Sentinel/Guide relationship should be one of mutual trust and respect. A Sentinel should never use their Guide as a slave. A Sentinel protects their Guide, but they should not smother them,” Blair said.

“Yeah,” Gibbs picked up the conversation again, “but Tony’s father is an ass. He used his wife, who also was his Guide, as nothing more than a tool to control his senses. Tony was concerned that he would do that to me. It took me almost a year to convince him that he was nothing like his father.”

“I do not believe that is Jim’s issue with a bond between us.”

“Jim?” Blair asked.

“Yes, James Tiberius Kirk, Captain of the USS Enterprise.”

“My Sentinel’s name is Jim as well,” Blair said, as he smiled at Spock.

“What is his problem with bonding?” Gibbs asked.

“I… until recently I was in a relationship with someone else. Jim did not want me to end it with her to be with him.”

“Wow,” Blair said.

“I have since ended the relationship; however, I do not know if Jim will still not wish to bond. I had, until recently, been considering asking Nyota to bond with me.”

“Is Nyota a Sentinel, too?” Blair asked, confused.

“No, why would you believe that?”

“Because you said you wanted to bond with her,” Gibbs said.

“As I stated before, I am Vulcan. Vulcan’s are a telepathic race that require a telepathic bond to maintain a healthy mind and body. The only ones who do not need it are those that undertake the process of kohlinar, a purging of all emotions.”

“You’re a telepath?” Blair asked, shocked.

“Yes, all Vulcans are. I must have a mate for when my Time comes.”

“Your time?” Gibbs questioned.

Spock flinched, “It is not something we speak of, not even amongst ourselves.”

“Okay, but I’m not sure we can help unless you tell us all the pertinent information,” Blair said.

Spock sighed, “very well, during our Time, we lose control over our emotions. It is a time of mating, where we are drawn to our bond-mate and we must return to our home planet to mate. The final bonding takes place right before the blood fever takes complete control of us.”

“How often does this happen,” Blair asked, curiously.

“Every seven years. If we do not mate with our bonded, we die.”

“Well, that sucks,” Blair said.

“How long does the blood fever last?” Gibbs asked, he wasn’t usually curious about other people’s sex lives, but this was too unusual to not find out about.

“Once we meet at the appointed place and mate, we return to our logical behavior,” Spock said, primly.

“Um… you said the final bonding? Is there some sort of pre-bond?” Blair questioned.

“Yes. We are usually bonded when we are seven.”

“That’s kind of young,” Gibbs said.

“We do not engage in any form of intimacy, until the final bonding. The initial bond is more than an engagement, but less than a marriage. The initial bond allows for us to become… accustomed to our future mate.”

“But if you were bonded at seven, why were you going to ask Nyota to bond with you?” Blair asked.

“My bond-mate, T-Pring, was killed when our planet was destroyed. I had been considering dissolving our bond before the destruction; however, I had not had the time to return to Vulcan.”

“Man… I have absolutely no idea what to say. Saying I’m sorry just doesn’t seem quite enough,” Blair said, sadly.

“How are you still sane? I lost my wife, if it hadn’t been for my daughter, Kelly, I don’t know what I would have done,” Gibbs said.

“I grieve with thee,” Spock said, acknowledging Gibbs’ loss.

“That’s… a beautiful statement. I grieve with thee, as well,” Blair said, to both men.

Spock and Gibbs just dipped their heads in acceptance. The three sat in silence, until Spock noticed the badger appear in front of him with a very agitated weasel.

“Jim,” the name slipping from Spock’s lips, as he left the jungle.

Chapter Text

Without thinking, Spock was in Jim’s quarters kneeling in front of him trying to bring him back from wherever he was. He was having little success until he touched Jim’s hand. Jim’s head snapped up and he was looking at Spock in surprise and confusion.

“Mister Spock?”

“Jim, are you all right?” Spock asked.

“I… yes. What is going on here?” he asked, looking around his room to find Bones approaching him.

“I don’t know, Jim, but you were unresponsive for nearly fifteen minutes. I want you in sickbay for tests,” Bones said.

“That will not be necessary, Doctor,” Spock replied.

“Not necessary… what the hell do you mean, not necessary?” Bones practically shouted at him.

“Calm yourself, Doctor. I am aware of the captain’s condition and there is nothing that medicine can do to assist him. He is not ill, nor does he have a condition that can be treated or cured.”

“Good God, man, you are not a doctor, nor do you have any say in what happens regarding anything to do with my department. Even Jim can’t overrule me on somethings,” Bones said, heatedly.

“Doctor,” Spock began, but was interrupted by Jim.

“Bones calm down. Spock, explain to me what just happened and why I don’t remember the last fifteen minutes of my life?”

“You were in what Blair Sandberg calls a zone out. I believe you became too focused on one of your senses and could not pull back enough on your own. That is why you need a Guide, Jim.”

“Fuck,” Jim swore, “I already told you, Spock, I do not want to break you and Uhura up. I overheard your conversation with her and that just wasn’t right.”

“Jim, I would have ended my relationship with Nyota even if you were not my Sentinel, because you are also my T’hy’la.”

“What is that?”

“The closest translation is close friend, brother, or lover. My katra, my soul is drawn to yours. We already have a small link between us. I had not noticed it before, but when I touched your hand during chess, I felt it. Do not turn me away, Jim.”

Jim’s eyes were wide, he just stared at his first officer and friend, trying to decide if he should push him away again or accept Spock’s explanation.  

“Jim, what troubles you?”

“Spock… um… I know everyone thinks I’m some sort of slut and have slept with anything and anyone, but I um… have never been with a….”

“You have never had a male partner before,” Spock said, finishing Jim’s thought.

“Yeah, that would be the case.”

“If that is your only objection, then I am willing to wait for you to be ready. I too have little experience with intimacy, where a male partner is concerned.”

“How would that work?” Jim asked, he was agitated and his skin was feeling tingly.

“I do not need sexual intimacy to survive; however, I would wish to have a mental link to you. That would satisfy until we are both ready for more, ashayam,” Spock said, still touching Jim’s hand.

For the first time in Jim’s life he felt out of his depth. He never would have thought Spock would be a romantic. Jim never told anyone, but he had a small understanding of the Vulcan language, so he was aware of the meaning for ashayam. Taking a leap of faith, he gave his friend and first officer a smile and said, “okay, I… yes.”

Spock held out his first two fingers, curling the others into his palm, “this is how Vulcan’s kiss, Jim.”

Jim copied him and Spock touched their fingers together rubbing them as he pulled back to stand and face a very irate Doctor Leonard McCoy.

Chapter Text

As Spock turned and faced an irate Doctor McCoy, Jim composed himself. He would love to have Spock defend him and protect him from Bones’ wrath, but he was man enough to know that he needed to explain as much as he could to his friend. Bones was glaring at them and looked on the verge of exploding, so Jim stepped in front of his Guide and held his hand up to stop Bones from killing Spock with a hypo.

“Bones, take a seat,” he said, in his best Captain’s voice.

“Now just wait a damn minute, Jim,” Bones began but was stopped by Jim.

“Sit, now,” Jim snapped at him. He is gratified when Bones sits without another protest. Taking a deep breath, Jim begins his story, “when I was little the doctors told my mother that I had overactive senses. Loud sounds bothered me, smells, touch, all five senses were not at a normal human level. I learned to live with it, but all the doctors said I would out grow them. It… I almost went insane because of them. In fact, I was forced to see a psychologist and a psychiatrist because of them. They even tried to treat me with medication, but I was allergic to most of them and almost died more than once,” Jim gives Bones and Spock a wry smile.

“Why the hell would they send you to a psychiatrist if the problem was medical?” Bones questioned.

Jim sighed, “they started to think that it was all in my mind. I started to act out more and more, then my mother went back into space and left me with my step-father, Frank. She was gone for about three months when he decided that I was too much trouble and he sent me to a reformatory school for intelligent, but troubled kids. That didn’t work out so well.”

“Where were you sent, Jim?” Spock asked.

“Tarsus IV,” he said, flatly.

Bones gasped and Spock was forced to school his expression into one of neutrality, even though he wanted to find Jim’s step-father and strangle him.

Taking a deep breath, Jim began again, “I… I was on Tarsus for about six months before the famine began. Kodos decided that several of the kids from the school should survive, but he wanted to play with our genetics, so I grabbed as many of the kids that I could and we ran. I used my senses to keep us all safe and to find safe food to eat and when Starfleet arrived almost six months later to rescue us, I shut down. I think my brain just couldn’t cope anymore and I… my heightened senses just disappeared. After I came out of my shock and was recovering I was normal. I could no longer hear conversations half a mile away or any of the other things I could do before. I honestly thought I had out grown it and was just trying to live with that happened on Tarsus that I didn’t think too hard about it.”

“When did it start again, Jim?” Spock asked.

“After Khan.”

“I am not certain; however, it would appear that when you were revived your senses were reactivated after their dormancy. As I understand Sentinel’s abilities in my limited capacity from speaking with the other Guides, I am not certain if this is common. I will have to ask the next time I have interactions with them.”

Bones incredulous stared as Jim and Spock. “No, just, no,” he said, “there must be some sort of hallucinogenic substance you two idiots were exposed to, because there is absolutely no medical evidence that someone would have all five senses heightened.”

With a raised eyebrow, Spock said, “Doctor, I assure you that I have not been exposed to any sort of hallucinogenic substance, nor are we idiots.”

“Yeah,” Jim choruses.

Bones glared at Jim, but turned to speak to Spock, “what the hell is a Sentinel?”

Spock, not wanting to try and explain that he has yet to find any historical data to support the Sentinel theory, he paraphrases Blair’s explanation to him, “Sentinels come from a time in history when humans needed protectors for their tribes. The Sentinel has heightened senses; sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch. There are some Sentinels that have a sixth sense, but they are extremely rare. Guides are those who help the Sentinels stay focused and help to prevent what you found Jim doing earlier, zoning. Guides bond with Sentinels and in doing so, give them a focal point to anchor them in the world.”

“I’m getting my tricorder,” Bones said, as he stands and heads to leave the room.

After Bones leaves the room, Jim turns to Spock, “well he could have taken that worse.”

“Indeed,” Spock replied. Standing in front of Jim, looking into the other man’s eyes he raised his hand to touch Jim’s face resting it on the meld points he finds. Jim’s breath hitches as he leans into Spock’s touch and accepts the warmth and affection flowing into him from the other male.

“Spock,” Jim said, eyes closed and feeling at peace for the first time in his life. He hates to break the spell, but he knows Bones will be back soon and he still has many questions to ask.

“How do we bond?”

“I do not know. I have not asked my fellow Guides what is required; however, if we do this I would ask that we bond in the Vulcan way as well, Jim.”

“Anything you want, Spock. I would like to meet these other Guides,” Jim said, smiling at his friend. He leans closer to Spock and flicks his eyes towards his lips, wondering what it would be like to kiss the other man, but before he can act on his desire his door opens and an angry Bones returns.

Muttering to himself about stupid love sick idiots he scans both Jim and Spock; finding nothing that would explain hallucinations, he adjusts his tricorder to a deeper setting. He still does not find anything, “you two are going to accompany me to sickbay for a full medical work up and I will get to the bottom of this,” he said, scowling at them.

Before either man can protest, the wail of the red alert alarm sounded and over the ships intercom system they hear, “all crew to battle stations. Repeat, all crew to battle stations.”

Kirk and Spock were out the door before McCoy could stop them.

Chapter Text

Jim exited the turbolift and snapped, “report!”

“Captain, we have received a distress call from Starbase three. An unknown assailant is attacking them. No other details are available,” Uhura reported.

“We will arrive in approximately one minute, Captain,” Sulu said.

“Very well, weapons on hot and shields up,” Jim ordered as he took his chair. He could feel Spock’s eyes on him for a moment, but then his Guide turned to his station and began to work. Jim was finding it difficult to focus on tuning his senses down, so to distract himself he stood and walked over to Spock.

“Mister Spock, anything to report?”

“No, Sir. My scans are not clear yet,” Spock said, as he glanced at Jim.

Jim reached out and brushed his hand against his first officers, the jolt of electricity that went through him was arousing and yet also soothing. It focused his mind and allowed him to calm enough to not try and overextend himself again.

“Dropping out of warp in five… four… three… two… one…” Sulu said, bring Jim back and returning him to his chair.

What Jim saw as not what he was expecting. The starbase was damaged, but there were no ships attacking it.

“Spock, report. Uhura, try and contact them.”

“Yes, Sir,” Uhura replied.

“Captain, it appears that the starbase has taken heavy damage to its exterior and life support is minimal. Evacuation is recommended. There are over two hundred life signs currently on the starbase.”

“Uhura…”

“I’m sorry sir, but communications on the station are offline.”

“Kirk to security.”

“Matthews, here Sir.”

“Matthews, I need a security team in the transporter room asap.”

“Yes, Sir.”

“Uhura contact sick bay and get a medical team to the transporter room. Mister Spock you are with me, Sulu you have the bridge.”

Kirk entered the lift with Spock close on his heels, as soon as the doors closed Spock grabbed his Sentinel’s hand and Jim relaxed.

“What is that?” Jim asked.

“I am uncertain as to what you are referring to, Jim.”

“It feels like a jolt of electricity that runs through me every time we touch.”

“You feel it as well?”

“Yeah… it’s arousing and yet calming, too.”

“I believe it is a result of our minds trying to connect. It would be wise to travel to New Vulcan as soon as possible to consult a priest to help with a preliminary bond.”

“Why just a preliminary bond?”

“Jim… there is much about Vulcans that others are not aware of. I will explain everything to you; however, we do not have time currently for that conversation.”

“All right,” Jim said. He smiled at his Guide and pulled him towards him locking their lips together in a kiss that was gentle and much too short. They separated just before the doors to the lift opened.

******

Once they we on the station, Jim quickly assigned teams. He, Spock and McCoy were headed towards the command center of the station. Jim, falling back on his experiences on Tarsus, extended his hearing to see if he could find anyone that was alive as the quickly made their way towards the command center. He was just rounding a corner when he heard a faint heartbeat, cocking his head to the side and listening intently he tried to discern which direction to go. Finding it, he took off knowing that Spock and McCoy would follow.

He slowed when he heard the heartbeat behind a half opened door. Jim tried to open it, but it was stuck.

“Jim,” Spock said.

Jim stepped aside, Spock quickly pushed the doors apart and allowed Jim to scan the room before they entered it.  Jim quickly found the source of the sound and moved what debris he could off the person.

“Bones!” he shouted.

“Dammit,” Bones said, as he scanned the small Vulcan child trying to stabilize her.

“Jim,” Spock called.

“What did you find?” Jim asked as he approached his first officer. What he saw made him close his eyes, a Vulcan woman, dead from a piece of shrapnel lodged in her side right where her heart was.

“The kids mother?” Jim asked.

“Logical. Doctor McCoy should keep the child sedated until we are able to locate relatives or transfer the child to New Vulcan.”

“Jim, I need to get her back to the ship,” Bones said.

“Go,” Jim said, smiling at his friend.

Jim and Spock continued to search for survivors after Bones returned to the ship with the girl. Four hours later and nearly two hundred people transferred off of the station, Jim and Spock returned to the enterprise. They had downloaded all the sensor records from the station and would have to review it, but first they had survivors to interview and they needed to contact Starfleet command with the news of Starbase Three’s current condition.

******

Three hours later, Jim and Spock entered sickbay to find McCoy’s smallest patient sitting on McCoy’s lap cuddled into him while McCoy read her a story.

“Bones?”

“Oh, hey Jim, Spock. She woke up about twenty minutes ago. Her name is T’Mir and her father is currently in a healing trace. I… um… told him that I would look after her until he was better.”

“Report,” Jim sighed.

McCoy stood still holding T’Mir in his arms and handed a PADD to Jim, “I still have five critical patients and three serious, but I’m confident that all will recover. I have moved all but the worst out of sickbay and have them sent to quarters, but they have all had to double up as we really don’t have the much extra empty rooms. All but one Vulcan has been released and I still have two Andorians that should be fine by tomorrow.”

“How long has T’Mir’s father been in a healing trance?” Spock asked.

“About four hours. I was able to fix most of his major injuries and he said he could fix the rest with his Vulcan voodoo.”

“It is not voodoo, Doctor.” Spock replied.

“Yeah, whatever.”

“Enough,” Jim snapped at them, his head hurt and he was exhausted and not in the mood to deal with his two friends right now.

“You okay, Jim?” Bones asked, concern clear in his voice.

Jim rubbed his temples, “no, I have a headache and I’m about ready to collapse from exhaustion,” he responded, not realizing he said it out loud. The next thing he felt was a hypo to his neck and the pain in his head was lessened.

“Go get some rest, Jim,” Bones said.

Jim opened his mouth to argue, but was stopped when Spock gently took his wrist and pulled him towards the sickbay doors.

“Spock….”

“Jim….”

“Spock, what are you doing?” Jim asked, as he was lead towards the turbo lift.

“Escorting you to your quarters and ensuring that you receive at least six hours of rest.”

“Spock, I don’t have time to sleep. We still haven’t figured out what happened to the station and I need to question the survivors.”

“I will continue to review the sensor data while you sleep. When you awaken you will be able to speak to the survivors with better focus,” Spock said, as he ushered Jim into his quarters and quickly and efficiently removed his command shirt leaving him in just his black undershirt. Jim was pushed down on the bed and had his boots removed before he could question his first officer. Spock encouraged Jim to lie down and move under the covers.

“Going to read me a bedtime story, too,” Jim quipped.

“If you wish,” Spock said, with a raised eyebrow.

Jim smiled at him and said, “no, thanks, but I wouldn’t mind a good-night kiss.”

Spock lowered himself down so that he was level with his Sentinel and future mate; he turned Jim’s face towards him and gave him a very sweet and very human kiss.

“Good-night, Jim.”

Jim just hummed in contentment.

Chapter Text

Jim awoke to find a warm hard body wrapped around him. He opened his eyes and shifted in the arms so that he was facing his Guide. Spock watched his captain and slowly touched his face with one finger running down his cheek towards his lips. Rubbing those lips, Spock move closer to Jim in a blatant show of desire, but Jim pulled back.

“Jim?” Spock said.

Jim lowered his eyes so as to not look at Spock, he was trying to calm his mind and find a way that would not end up with either of them heartbroken. As much as he wanted Spock, he knew he wasn’t the best person for the Vulcan. Finally, he spoke, “are you sure that you and Uhura can’t work things out?”

Spock resisted the urge to sigh, “Jim, Nyota and I are not compatible. I realized that almost too late; you and I are extremely compatible and I have no desire to find anyone else.”

“I have a lot of bad crap in my head, Spock. I really don’t think that you want a connection to someone that has so much baggage.”

Being this close to his future mate, Spock was able to read his feelings rather well; deciding that he would not allow Jim to pull away from him, he rolled Jim under him and keeping him pinned he forced the other man to look him in the eyes before he spoke, “Jim, I understand that you have had many awful things happen to you in your life, but I will not now nor ever leave you because of what you might have done or had done to you to survive. I find you intriguing, I find you intelligent, and I find that I could spend the rest of my life trying to discover everything about you. We are T’hy’la, that will not change. I wish to have a romantic relationship with you; however, if you do not wish this we still will be T’hy’la, without being lovers.”

Jim blinked at the Vulcan above him, he never thought he would be turned on by another male, but he was trying too will his body into submission. “Um… I just don’t want you to regret anything about us, I don’t think I could handle that Spock.”

“That shall never happen ashayam,” Spock said, as he lowered his lips to capture his future mate in a very passionate kiss that left both breathless. Spock pulled back and could see desire and fear waring in his Sentinel’s eyes, “do not fear, Jim.”

“I… I never thought I would… um… you know… with a guy.”

“We have much to learn, Jim. As I stated before, we shall take our time. I believe we should both shower and prepare for our day,” Spock said, giving Jim another kiss before he allowed the other man up off the bed. Gently pushing Jim towards the bathroom, he pushed him into it and shut the door with the order to shower.

******

The rest of the day Jim and Spock spent trying to piece together what happened on board Starbase Three. All the eyewitness interviews and sensor data led them to believe that whoever attacked the base was a new threat to the Federation and Starfleet. Unfortunately, they were unable to track the ship or find any evidence that would allow them to predict its next move or attack.

Starfleet Command determined that the Enterprise should escort the Vulcans on-board to New Vulcan, while the U.S.S. Defiant would escort the other remaining group to the next nearest Starbase for transport to the next destination.

Kirk and Spock had informed Starfleet of their impending bonding and that they would need to spend time on New Vulcan with a healer to finalize a preliminary bond. Komack and several other admirals were not happy about the status; however, when the Vulcan High Council member T’Pau contacted them, they relented. Spock was uncertain as to how she knew, but he would have to thank her when they arrived at New Vulcan.

Spock was planning on informing Jim of Pon Farr before they arrived on New Vulcan; he knew it was not something they spoke to outsiders about, but Jim would not be an outsider for long. Jim would be his bond mate, his friend, his lover, his Sentinel, his T’hy’la, Jim would be his everything. He would not let him enter a bonding unprepared.

******

Jim entered sick bay to find Bones looking harassed and grumpy. He loved his friend grumpy, he thought he was kind of cute when he was grumpy, but he would never tell that to Spock; he had a feeling that the Vulcan was a bit on the jealous side. Possibly on the possessive side as well, if the strong arm wrap around him and a small growl were any indication.

“Spock?”

“I do not like you thinking Leonard is cute, Jim,” Spock said, with a growl.

“Um… how the hell did you know I thought that and I didn’t think you were into PDA’s?”

Spock released his captain and quickly put distance between them, “I apologize, Captain. I am unsure as to what triggered that very illogical moment.”

“Apology accepted and for the record, Spock, I think of Bones as a good friend, but not as relationship material.”

Spock just nodded his head in understanding and acceptance.

“Oh, thank God, Jim… Spock will you tell his over grown hobgoblin that I have work to do and that he needs to take his daughter and go find the quarters that I had assigned to him,” Bones grumbled.

Bones was still holding the little Vulcan girl in his arms and it appeared that every time he tried to put her down or hand her off she would hold on harder. She was cute, Jim thought with her tiny pointy ears and the raised eyebrows. He was just ready to laugh at his friend when Spock stiffened next to him and maneuvered himself closer to Jim.

“Stonn,” Spock said, in the coldest tone Jim had heard from him.

“Spock,” the other Vulcan replied.

“Ko-mekh,” the Vulcan girl said, snuggling closer to Bones as she did.

“Aw… fuck,” Jim said, knowing that was the Vulcan word for mother. The little girl was not calling for her dead mother, but was calling Bones her mother.

“What?” Bones said, trying not to yell and scare the kid in his arms.

Looking at the two Vulcan adults in the room and recognizing neither were wanting to discuss what was happening, Jim took the lead, “um… Bones… maybe we should use your office for this conversation.”

Bones narrowed his eyes at Jim, but lead them into his office. Once the office door was shut and locked, Bones turned to the two Vulcans and Jim for an explanation.

“What is going on?” he demanded.

“Look, Bones… I don’t know everything about Vulcan bonds, but I think that she attached herself to you,” Jim said.

“I know she likes me, but I have work to do,” Bones grumbled back.

“Doctor, I believe the Captain was trying to inform you that T’Mir has formed a parental bond with you. It is, in most cases, formed prior to birth, but it has been known to occur in young children if one or both of their parents die. When Stonn’s mate perished, T’Mir must have formed a bond with the next closest person she felt safe with,” Spock said.

“But… but… she has a father” Bones said, stunned.

“Yes; however, I was unavailable at a critical stage of need for T’Mir,” Stonn said.

Spock cleared his throat, bring the attention back to him, he said, “I believe it would be wise to enlist T’Pau’s assistance in this matter when we reach New Vulcan.”

“A very logical suggestion,” Stonn agreed.

“Bones, why don’t you take off for a few days and help Stonn with T’Mir,” Jim said, it was an order not a question.

“Yeah, whatever. Come on hobgoblin I’ll show you around,” Bones snarled.

“Well… that went well,” Jim said.

“I do not believe that would be the appropriate description of the incident between Doctor McCoy and Stonn.”

“Is there something you’re not telling me Spock?”

Spock hesitated before answering, “it is not my place to speculate on the situation between Doctor McCoy and Stonn.”

“Spock….”

“Jim….”

“Mister Spock….”

“James….”

“Commander….”

“Captain….”

“Fine. But I will find out what you are hiding from me, babe,” Jim said, as he turned on his heels and high tailed it out of sick bay with a Vulcan on his ass.

Chapter Text

The Enterprise was only a day out from New Vulcan when Spock decided that Jim should learn about Vulcan mating practices. He insisted that they had important business to discuss and ushered Jim into the Captain’s quarters right after their shift ended. Jim changed into more casual clothing, insisting that if they were going to have a serious discussion he at least wanted to be comfortable. Sitting on the couch in Jim’s quarters Spock was surprised when Jim sat next to him and placed his head on his shoulder.

“So, Spock, are you finally going to tell me what’s on your mind?”

“Jim… I do not wish for you to enter a bond with me without all the pertinent information.”

“And what would that information be?”

“Vulcans do not speak of it with outsiders.”

“But you are going to tell me?”

“Yes.”

Jim moved his head off of Spock’s shoulder and turned to face him, “all right, I understand that this might be hard, but it would probably work best if you just told me.”

Spock should have meditated prior to having this discussion, “it is regarding pon farr.”

“And that should mean something to me?”

“Pon farr is the Vulcan mating time. It is a time when we lose all logic and control and are reduced to our savage ancestors.”

A smile broke out on Jim’s face, “wait… let me get this straight… Vulcans like, what, go into heat?”

“No. If you will let me proceed. Once a young Vulcan reaches maturity they enter pon farr and are drawn to their mate. This is the reason that Vulcans are bonded as children. After our first pon farr we will experience one every seven years. It is the only time in which a female Vulcan can choose to end a marriage by challenging her husband.”

Jim blinked at him and then blinked again, “so… I’m like your wife?”

“That would be an accurate assessment,” Spock said, trying not to fidget under his mate’s gaze.

“Yeah, that is so not happening, buddy.”

Spock sighed, “Jim, it is not… I would not… if you did not wish to continue in our marriage, I would release you and break the bond; however, we would still be T’hy’la, nothing will change that.”

“Okay, back-up here. So once every seven years we are going to have sex and you will lose all your logical control. What about in between the seven years? We don’t have sex; we just cuddle? Not sure I could handle that.”

Spock blinked at Jim, “you misunderstand, Jim. We are not incapable of having intercourse in between our Time’s. During our pon farr we have no control over it, we must mate or die.”

“Whoa… you’re not talking figurative here, are you?”

“No. If we do not mate we die in the fires of pon farr. There is the option for meditation, combat, or great shock, but they are just as dangerous, if not more so. The reason for our bonding as children is to ensure that when our Time comes, we will have a mate to lead us through our plight. We are drawn to our mate and our mate is drawn to us, as well.”

“Um… okay. How long does this last?”

“Upwards of three days.”

“Three days of sex,” Jim said, astonished.

“Yes, but I would never hurt you, Jim.”

“I’m guessing that your mother went through pon farr with your father at least once or twice. If she could survive it, I’m pretty sure it won’t kill me. I just think that we will need to have sex before you have yours because I don’t think I want my first time to be during that,” Jim said, seriously.

“Nor do I wish for our first time to be during pon farr. You are correct that my mother did endure pon parr with my father and survived. I never spoke of it with her so I cannot give you any reference points as to how severe it was.”

“I guess we really don’t have a choice if we want to be together.”

“We do not.”

“What about this whole Sentinel thing?”

“I am not certain. We should consult the others that I have meet in regards to bonding; however, that will require that you learn how to meditate.”

“I… think I can do that. Now, let’s go to bed, I’m tired,” Jim said, grabbing his Guide’s hand and pulling him towards the bed.

******

Bones walked towards the desk in his cabin needing to find a drink. Stonn his, he had no idea what the fuck to call him, was sitting on his couch reading a PADD and T’Mir was asleep in Bones’ bed. Since he released Stonn and T’Mir from sick bay they had not left his side and it was getting irritating. T’Mir he didn’t mind too much, she was a smart and cute kid, but Stonn had begun to invade his personal space and that made him nervous. He was drawn from his thoughts when the man in question spoke, “I believe it would be prudent to speak of our future.”

“Excuse me?”

“I stated that it would be prudent to speak of our future.”

“I heard you the first time you green blooded hobgoblin. What future? Once we drop you off at New Vulcan and the Enterprise is on her way back into space we will not be seeing each other again. We do not have a future.”

The annoying Vulcan blinked at him several times before he spoke again, “Leonard, do you not realize that we have a very rare spontaneous bond.”

“What the fuck,” Len whispered harshly.

“Leonard please calm yourself. I believed that you understood when Captain Kirk and Spock explained T’Mir’s bond to you.”

“No, I didn’t understand. I thought it was between her and me, not you and me. And don’t call me Leonard.”

Stonn sighed, his mate was irritating and not what he would have wished for, but it was what it was, kaiidth. “If I am not allowed to call you Leonard, what may I call you?”

“I don’t know! Think of something!”

Stonn did not smile, “Sa-telsu please calm yourself.”

“Is that a pet name?” Bones narrowed his eyes at the Vulcan.   

“No. May we please speak of our situation?”

“Fine.”

“I apologize for the spontaneous bond. It was not my intention to form one and had I been in full control of my mind, one would not have formed; however, T’Mir formed a bond with you and it drew my mind to yours. I believe when you touched me before I entered my healing trance, my mind latched onto yours. Once again I apologize for this.”

“So how do we break it?”

“A healer maybe able to sever the bond; however, it would be painful to T’Mir if you wish to sever that bond as well. Her mind is still in the developmental stages and she has a much higher level of empathy than telepathy; she would see the severing as a rejection.”

Bones was silent, he swallowed before he spoke again, “what if we severed our… whatever, but left hers intact?”

“It is possible; divorce is rare on Vulcan, but not unheard of,” Stonn said.

“All right, that’s what we’ll do.”

“I should caution that the healer may not be able to sever our bond.”

“Shit… what… if… I,” Bones started to say, shaking his head, he tried again, “what does that mean? I mean what does that mean for us, if they can’t break this bond thing?”

“Then we would be bonded until my Time came again and you could then challenge my claim to you.”

“What the fuck does that mean?”

“It is not something we speak of, even amongst ourselves,” Stonn said, taking a deep breath, he centered himself before he began again, “however, it would be wise for me to explain in more detail.”

“That would be nice.”

“Every seven years after puberty, a Vulcan male will enter pon farr. It is… the urge to mate. At that time, you could challenge my claim and I would battle your chosen champion. It would be logical to inform you that if your champion lost I would still claim you. Pon farr is a time when we lose our logical control and we revert to our baser instincts. It is very unpleasant to us.”

“You… um… would have sex with me?”

“Yes.”

“Against my will?”

“The bond would draw us together, once the challenge was completed we would still be mates and I would be unable to not take what is mine. Vulcans can be… territorial.”

“What would happen to my champion?”

“They would be dead.”

“Excuse me?”

“It is a battle to the death, either mine or your champion.”

“I… I thought you Vulcans were all about logic and peace. That does not sound like either.”

“That is why Vulcans control their emotions… we are dangerous if we do not,” Stonn said, flatly.

“When is your next pon farr?”

“In approximately six years,” Stonn said.

“I… I need to leave,” Bones said, as he got up and headed out of his quarters. He walked aimlessly until he approached Jim’s quarters, he rang the chime hoping his friend was awake. The door slid open and he walked in to find Jim just pulling on a shirt and looking sleep mussed.

“Bones? What happened?” Jim asked.

Bones didn’t know what to say, so he just wrapped his arms around his friend and held on, hoping that the other man would let him breakdown without comment. He needed time to think and process everything he had learned; maybe Jim could help him decided what to do.

Chapter Text

Jim was worried, he had never seen Bones this upset before. He maneuvered his friend towards the small couch in his room and got him seated. Keeping his arm around him he gently asked, “Bones, what’s wrong?”

“That… that hobgoblin said we were bonded. I don’t even know what the hell that means, Jim.”

“Spock,” Jim called for his guide.

“Jim?”

“Stonn told Bones that they were bonded, is that possible?”

Spock blinked and thought before he spoke, “it is possible. I am unfamiliar with how spontaneous bonds work. It would be wise to contact T’Pau and schedule a meeting with her upon our arrival at New Vulcan.”

“Maybe she can break it?” Jim asked.

“No… I don’t want to hurt T’Mir. Stonn said that if we broke the bond between T’Mir and myself it might make her feel rejected; I won’t do that to any kid. I’ll figure out what Stonn and I are going to do; I just… what the hell do you people do to yourselves that you have to endure some stupid mating time once every seven years?” Bones snarled at Spock.

Spock blinked at the doctor, “Stonn informed you of Pon Farr?”

“Yeah, was he not supposed to?”

“It is… we do not speak of it to outsiders,” Spock said, stiffly.

“I’m bonded to the fucker, I think that makes me an insider,” Bones growled, at the Vulcan.

Spock was startled at McCoy’s use of profanity, “forgive me, Doctor. It was not my intent to imply that you were an outsider. Stonn is a full Vulcan and as such he is less likely to offer information to those he might see as inferior.”

“Inferior… inferior… I am not inferior. I’m human and that does not make me less than some stuffy… stupid… stuck-up… stick up his ass, Vulcan.”

Spock looked imploringly to his own future mate for assistance, but Jim was just grinning like a loon. Spock decided to try a different tactic, “perhaps I should speak with Stonn regarding any concerns he might have been mated to a human. I have my own concerns regarding my future bond with Jim, perhaps Stonn and I could assist each other, while you and Jim speak.”

“Yeah, that might be a good idea, Spock,” Jim said, trying to hide his desire to laugh.

“Very well, I will return later,” Spock said, turning on his heels and leaving the room.

Once Spock was gone, Jim lost it. He began to laugh until he had tears in his eyes and he was hiccupping uncontrollably. The scowl on Bones’ face brought him to an abrupt stop, “sorry, Bones.”

“You think my situation is funny? I’m… I’m supposed to have sex with another male… an emotionless Vulcan male at that.”

“Bones… Vulcans are not emotionless. They have very deep and at times dangerous emotions that they learn to control, so as not to return to their previous time when they lived off of emotions and had little logic. You know they almost killed themselves off before they found logic.”

“How do you know that?” Bones asked, curious now.

“Um… well, when I was stuck on Delta Vega with Spock’s counterpart and he melded with me, I sort of picked up some stuff that I don’t think he meant for me to know.”

“Okay. So Vulcans do feel, they just choose not to show it to the world.”

“Yeah, that’s what I got from Spock, well the older Spock.”

“Jim, you know me, I’m an emotional person. I don’t think I could live with someone that doesn’t tell me how he feels about me. Hell, does he even like me? Why the hell am I thinking about if some guy I just met ‘likes’ me; I sound so thirteen,” Bones said, burring his face in his hands.

Jim gave his friend a small smile and gently rubbed his back, “Bones, I get it. I really do. I’ve never been with a guy and I’m terrified of that, but I really care about Spock and I think he is worth the effort. I know that you don’t know Stonn very well, but maybe you could… I don’t know… try?”

“I guess. What about you and Spock?”

Jim’s smile turned sappy, “we’re taking it one day at a time. Going slow. Yeah, I know… I’ve never been known for going slow, but I don’t want to get hurt and I really don’t want to hurt him.”

“But you’re going to bond with him?”

“Just a preliminary bond, not a full one, not until Pon Farr hits, that is.”

“What’s the difference?”

“The preliminary bond will draw us together when his Pon Farr hits, other than that I really don’t know.”

“Huh,” Bones said, just as a large yawn overtook him.

“How about you sleep on my couch tonight?” Jim offered.

“Yeah, okay,” Bones said, as he laid down and Jim retrieved a blanket to cover his friend. Jim bent and kissed Bones on the top of his head, receiving a snarky huff.

“Night, Bones.”

“Night, Jim.”

******

Spock traveled towards Doctor McCoy’s quarters in search of Stonn. He was uncertain as to what he would say to the other Vulcan, but he knew it was his duty to speak to him regarding the doctor. He rang the chime on the doctor’s quarters and waited for the door to be answered.

“Spock,” Stonn said, flatly.

“Stonn,” Spock said. Stonn just looked at him, not moving from his place blocking the entry to the doctor’s quarters. Frustrated, Spock asked, “may I enter?”

Stonn stepped to the side and allowed him entry into the quarters. “May I ask what this is in regards to?”

“Doctor McCoy.”

“You wish to speak to me regarding my mate?”

“He is not your mate, yet.”

“We are bonded; we only have yet to have intercourse.”

“Stonn, he is human.”

“I am aware of this.”

“And as he is human, you must not treat him like a Vulcan.”

“That would be illogical, as he is not Vulcan.”

“Yes, and as he is not Vulcan, he requires more emotional affection.”

“I am aware of this as well, Spock.”

“Do you intend to offer him this affection?”

“I do not believe that should concern you.”

Spock was quiet for a moment, “Doctor McCoy is my future mates best friend. It concerns me.”

“Very well, if you must know; I intend to keep the doctor as my mate. I find that he is very useful in caring for T’Mir.”

“You want him as a mother for your daughter?” Spock said, growing angry, but not showing it.

“I would, perhaps wish for more, when he is ready.”

“You care for him,” Spock said, with narrowed eyes.

“I find him intriguing and he has help T’Mir with her empathic connection.”

“That is not an answer.”

“I was going to research human courtship rituals, at a later date.”

“That would be wise; however, it might be beneficial to speak with a human in regards to what would be appropriate and what would be… ‘over the top’ as the humans say.”

“Do you have someone in mind?”

“Yes, but I must first ask her. I would never wish to volunteer her services, without her consent.”

“I will await an answer.”

Spock just nodded to Stonn, he then left the room as no other conversation was necessary.

Chapter Text

The Enterprise would be arriving at New Vulcan in less than six hours; Spock and Stonn had requested meetings with T’Pau when they arrived. Nyota had graciously agreed to tutor Stonn in human mating practices, after she had finished laughing. She had found it humorous that Doctor McCoy was now bonded to a Vulcan; Spock was not certain as to why that was such a humorous situation, but Nyota had found it such.

Spock was now in his quarters attempting to teach Jim how to meditate; he was finding it quite tedious. He might be in love with the man, but that did now mean teaching him how to meditate was enjoyable. Jim had found it hard to focus and slip into a relaxed state without falling asleep. After, two hours of trying to find a focal point for Jim, they had concluded that Spock’s heartbeat would sooth the other man, without putting him to sleep.

Spock opened his eyes to find he was once again in the jungle. He took in his surroundings and found his fellow guides and Jim. Jim still had his eyes closed; smiling at his Sentinel, he spoke, “Jim, you may open your eyes.”

Jim blinked his eyes open, feeling relaxed, he looked around and found four unfamiliar men watching him, “hello,” he said, giving them a small wave.

“You must be Jim,” the man with curly hair stated.

“That would be me… and you are?”

“Jim, this is Blair Sandburg, Doctor Rodney McKay, Doctor Daniel Jackson, and Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs,” Spock said, nodding respectively to each man.

“Nice to meet you, I’m James T. Kirk, captain of the U.S.S. Enterprise.”

“Do you prefer Jim or James?” Blair asked.

“Jim.”

“Okay, Jim. Nice to meet you. I see that Spock has gotten you to come visit our little gathering. Do you have any questions?”

Jim thought about it, “I really don’t know what to ask. Spock has told me about Sentinels and Guides, but I guess the only question is how does Spock being my Guide really help me focus?”

“You use him as a base for all your sense, because of this, he is capable of bringing you out of a zone or prevent one from happening. He is… well for most of us… our Sentinel is the other half of us. Our Sentinels feel the same way,” Blair said, smiling at the newcomer.

“Huh, cool,” Jim said.

“May I ask you a question?” Blair asked.

“Sure.”

“How long have your senses been on-line?”

“On-line?”

“Um… yeah, we call it on-line when a Sentinel’s senses are active.”

“Oh… well the first time or this time?”

“The first time?”

“I was born with them,” Jim said, shrugging.

“How are you not insane?” the guy with the crooked smile said.

“Rodney, behave. Forgive him, he never knows when to be tactful,” the guy in glasses said.

“I like blunt. As to being sane, that is debatable,” Jim smirked.

Rodney gave an amused huff, before he said, “sounds just like John.”

“John?” Jim asked.

“Oh, John Sheppard. He’s my Sentinel. He is suicidal.”

“Ah.”

“When did your senses go off-line?” Blair asked, trying to bring the conversation back on-track.

“When I was around thirteen. Something traumatic happened and I sort of shut down, but about a year ago they came back. I never had a problem dealing with them until they came back.”

“Probably because you found your Guide,” Daniel said.

Jim smiled at Spock and raised two fingers hoping the Vulcan would accept a kiss, Spock did so without hesitation.

Turning to his fellow Guides, Spock asked, “you mentioned bonding before; how is that accomplished?”

Blair and Daniel stared at them, “what was that you just did?” they asked at the same time.

“A kiss. It is the only appropriate show of affection that would be allowed in public, between bond mates.”

“Cool, man. Sorry, to answer your question, sex,” Blair said, shrugging.

“Oh,” Jim said.

“No other way?” Spock asked, blushing slightly green.

“Um… not really,” Blair said, distracted by the green tint of his fellow guide.

“Why are you green?” Rodney asked.

Spock raised his eyebrow at the man, “my blood is copper based, not iron.”

“Huh, you were blushing,” Rodney said.

“It’s so cute when he does that,” Jim said, smiling at his Guide.

“I take it that you two haven’t had sex, yet,” Daniel stated.

“Yeah, um… we’re working up to that, slowly,” Jim said, as he blushed this time.

“I find your blush astatically pleasing, Jim,” Spock said, making his future bond-mate blush even more.

“Well, the desire to bond will become more prevalent the longer you wait,” Blair said.

“It’s dangerous to wait too long,” Gibbs finally spoke.

“Why?” Jim asked.

“The longer you wait, the more you will be drawn to each other. When you finally give in, and you will, it can be rather violent,” Gibbs said, with authority.

“How bad?” Jim questioned.

“Tony, my Sentinel, lost it during a case. It wasn’t pretty,” Gibbs grimaced.

“Jim has never been with a male. How long is it safe to wait?”

“Well, Tony’s reaction was bad, because he waited for so many years; however, if you too just meet it should be safe to wait at least a bit,” Gibbs said, shrugging.

“We’ve known each other for over two years, but just realized a connection. I don’t want to hurt you Spock,” Jim said, biting his bottom lip.

“You would never hurt me, Ashal-veh. Do not forget that I am Vulcan.”

“Good point, but still probably not a good idea to wait too long, Spock.”

“Say that again,” Daniel said, with bright eyes on Spock.

“Ashal-veh?” Spock questioned.

“Yeah, what does it mean?”

“Beloved, darling, and sweetheart in standard translation.”

“Oh great, another language he’s going to want to learn,” Rodney said, rolling his eyes.

“Prime Directive, Spock,” Jim cautioned.

“I do not think that would apply, Captain. I have determined that they do not exist in our universe. I believe that they are from an alternate universe.”

“You sure?”

“Yes, and I do not think the Prime Directive would apply in this situation even if they are from our universe.”

“How so?”

“They already know of other extraterrestrial lifeforms.”

“What? How?”

“We have been traveling using the Stargates for over ten years,” Daniel said.

“What’s a Stargate?” Jim asked.

“It allows for a sustained wormhole between two points in space or two planets. We have been traveling off world for over ten years and we have intergalactic space ships,” Daniel said.

“Wait… did you just say intergalactic not interstellar?” Jim asked.

“Yeah, why?”

“Because we don’t even have that,” Jim said, flatly.

“Oh,” McKay said, “wait, you are from Earth, right?”

“Yeah, well, I am. I was born in space, but raised in Iowa.”

“So how much of the Milky Way Galaxy have you explored?” McKay asked.

“Not much. We are working on deep space explorations, but have had a few setbacks in the last two years. We are in the Alpha quadrant and have been into the Beta quadrant as well, but a lot of space is still unexplored for us. How did you get your Warp Drives to go that fast?”

“Um… maybe we shouldn’t say,” Daniel said.

“Why?” Spock asked.

“Because if we are in different universes; what works in ours might not work in yours,” Rodney sighed.

“We will not be able to recreate your technology with just a brief explanation,” Spock said, reasonably.

“That’s probably true… um… let us talk to our… bosses and maybe next time we meet we can tell you,” Daniel stated.

“Sure, hey, maybe next time we are here the other Sentinels could come too. I would love to meet them,” Jim said, with a bright smile.

“That would be a great idea,” Blair replied.

“I believe it is time to depart, Jim,” Spock stated.

“Sure, it was a pleasure to meet all of you,” Jim said, with a wave to the Guides as he and Spock disappeared.

Jim slowly opened his eyes to find Spock doing the same. His smiled turned to a frown, as he thought about what was said in that weird place. He found that he like the other Guides and their information was useful, even if he really did not think he was ready for sex with Spock. He was trying to avoid that idea altogether. Jim was pulled from his musings when his Guide spoke.

“You are distressed, Jim.”

“What? No… just thinking.”

“You are concerned about the Sentinel/Guide bonding process. Please do not concern yourself with hurting me, I am not fragile.”

“You caught me,” Jim said.

“Jim, perhaps it would be wise for us to discuss our romantic relationship.”

“That just it, Spock, I… I’ve never had a romantic relationship with a male and… well… not anyone really. I just don’t know what to expect.”

“Jim, we have time to explore our relationship and its many facets.”

Jim stood up and started to pace the room, “how can you be so calm about the idea of having to have sex with another man. I mean… I don’t have a problem with it, but it… ugh… I sort of have control issues in the bedroom and letting someone else have control is sort of scary. I like the making out and the cuddling, but actual intercourse… I just don’t know,” he said, as he finally deflated and sat down on the small couch.

Spock did not speak at first, thinking perhaps it was time to explain his prior relationships to Jim, but before he could begin, Jim was called to the bridge; they had arrived at New Vulcan.

Chapter Text

Two hours after arriving at New Vulcan; Jim, Spock, Bones, Stonn, and T’Mir all beamed down and were met by Sarek and Amanda. Amanda was the first to speak, “Spock, I have missed you.”

“As have I, Mother.”

“T’Pau awaits you, my son,” Sarek intoned, indicating that newly constructed Temple they had beamed down near.

“Of course, Father. Mother we shall speak after. Come, Jim,” Spock said, holding out his hand with his first two fingers extended; Jim, having been informed prior to their arrival, knew he was supposed to place his first two fingers over Spock’s and walk along side of his future bond-mate. Jim did as he was requested and they left the small group waiting outside the temple. Jim was impressed with the efficiency of the Vulcans; it had been just slightly over two years since the destruction of their home world and they had made great strides in crafting this new world to suit their logic. Viewing the changes to this formerly barren planet, Jim would disagree with anyone who believed the perceptions the galaxy had of Vulcans as unfeeling creatures who believed strictly in the tenets of logic. The Vulcans were a sentimental, caring, traditional people who used logic to prevent their destruction; he despised Nero for trying to destroy what had taken Vulcans centuries to build.

As he and Spock approached the temple, Jim extended his senses to ensure the safety of his Guide; he knew that to the Vulcans he was the ‘wife’ in this relationship, but his Sentinel was at odds with this description. He was a protector; he knew this deep in his bones and he was aware that Spock was quite capable of defending himself, but Jim could not turn off his protective instincts. Jim relaxed when he found no immediate danger to his Guide or himself. They entered the Temple and found T’Pau, the only Vulcan to turn down a seat of the Federation Council, sitting in a chair. No, a chair was the wrong term; it was more like an ancient earth litter, Jim thought. It obviously was used to carry T’Pau from one location to another without her walking, it had four poles that two Vulcans would grip and lift the litter to transport her. It must have been part of their traditions and it cemented Jim’s belief that Vulcans were sentimental saps. He was drawn from his musings by the sound of a gong.

Spock knelt in front of T’Pau and spoke in Vulcan; Jim knew enough of the language to translate it in his head. Spock greeted T’Pau; T’Pau returned the greeting and asked Spock if he was certain of his choice. Jim narrowed his eyes, he would not allow anyone to stand between him and his Guide, but before he could raise an objection to T’Pau, Spock responded, “yes.”

“Very well, Spock. Come James T. Kirk, I would have your thoughts.”

Jim steeled himself to an intrusion into his mind from the Vulcan woman; approaching her he allowed her into his mind, protecting his most inner memories and thoughts with a ruthlessness not seen in many humans. T’Pau reached for a part of his mind he knew was sacred; a part that he would not allow anyone to touch, save himself and his Guide. He snapped walls down that he didn’t know were there, causing T’Pau to pull away from his mind; trying to hide her shock, she said, “you have a very strong mind, James. You are not what we would expect from a human. I approve of the match, Spock.”

“You will bond us, then?”

“There is no need; you already have a bond, one which your mate will protect with a fierceness not seen in many.”

“Jim?”

Jim turned towards his Guide, his mate, “she tried to tug on it, the bond, I would not allow it. You are mine and I am yours, Spock.” Jim walked towards his mate and gently touched his meld points, Spock returned the gesture and slipped into his mate’s mind without thought. Jim allowed Spock to explore his mind unhindered.

“Jim,” Spock said, in wonder at the ease of exploring Jim’s mind.

“Guide,” Jim spoke, drawing his mate towards a heavily guarded manifestation of a door. The door swung open at the slightest touch from Spock, inside he found the weasel and badger curled up with each other.

“I do not understand…”

“I… they are us, Spock. This is our safe place. My job is as a protector and you are the first thing that I must protect. That is why I couldn’t leave you on Nibiru, that is why I sacrificed my life to save the ship; I could not let you die. I didn’t even know it then, it just hit me when we were approaching the temple; I understand now, Spock.”

“Understand what, Jim?”

Jim stepped closer to Spock, his Guide, his mate, “I love you, Spock. I would do anything to protect you; to keep you safe. You are my everything; without you I am nothing.”

“You have never been nothing, Jim. I… you are my T’hy’la, my everything; I have nothing without you. I love you, Jim. I wish to explore more; however, I believe it would be wise to return to the temple as T’Pau has another appointment.”

“Yeah, all right. We will discuss our other bonding back on the Enterprise,” Jim said, as Spock slowly pulled from is mind.

Jim opened his eyes, eyes he did not know he had closed. He gave Spock a small smile; he wanted to kiss him, but held himself back knowing it wasn’t an appropriate place.

Chapter Text

Jim and Spock emerged from the Temple to find Bones and Stonn arguing, as usual. T’Mir was being held by Amanda while Bones and Stonn discussed something heatedly. Jim cocked his head and listened their conversation; he knew it was not right, but there was tension between the two men and Jim couldn’t, no, wouldn’t allow harm to befall Bones.

“She didn’t need to be here,” Jim heard Bones hiss.

“Leonard, she is Vulcan. Why should she not be here?” Stonn replied.

“She isn’t, Stonn, and you know it,” Bones said.

“I am Vulcan and her birth mother was Vulcan. T’Mir is Vulcan. This discussion is over, Leonard,” Stonn said.

“Dammit, man, she isn’t pure Vulcan and you know that,” Bones said, looking away from Stonn. “I… know that Vulcans can be intolerant of differences, Stonn. I don’t want that for her. I know I’m not her biological parent, but I feel like I am and I want to protect her. Please let me do that,” Bones begged.

“Very well, Leonard; if it means this much to you, we shall ask Lady Amanda if she will care for her while we meet with T’Pau,” Stonn said, extending two fingers towards his mate. Jim was shocked when Bones returned the gesture. Jim could feel Spock’s curiosity through their bond; their meld in the temple helped to free the bond, but he also was aware that more time would be needed to nurture the bond so to allow it to flourish and strengthen.

“I’ll tell you later,” Jim whispered to Spock.

Spock just nodded in reply. Jim noticed that Stonn and Bones had stopped their argument and were now headed back to Amanda and Sarek. Jim and Spock also approached the pair, just in time to hear Stonn speak, “Lady Amanda, would you be amenable to caring for T’Mir while Leonard and I meet with T’Pau?” Stonn asked.

A genuine smile graced Amanda’s face, “I would be honored.”

“Wife…” Sarek began.

“We should take her to our house and get her out of the heat,” Amanda said, cutting off whatever he was about to say. He looked disgruntled, but nodded his head in agreement.

“Thank you, Lady Amanda,” Bones said, politely.

“You are most welcome. Husband, you shall wait here for them and escort them to our home when they are done. Spock and Jim will accompany me now.”

Jim held back a laugh at the disgruntled look Sarek gave his wife.

Sarek wisely held his tongue and nodded his agreement to Amanda’s demand.

“See you guys later,” Jim said, and turned to follow his Guide and his new mother-in-law.

******

Leonard and Stonn entered the temple a few moments after Amanda departed. They approached a Vulcan woman who must have been T’Pau. She spoke to Stonn first in Vulcan and then in Standard, “Stonn, may I have your thoughts?”

Stonn just nodded and allowed the woman to place her fingers on his face. It lasted no longer than a minute and she was releasing him; turning to Leonard she again spoke in Standard, “may I have your thoughts?”

Leonard nodded and she repeated the same process on him. He felt her sip into his mind and poke around at his memories; he had thought she would only look at this bond thing they supposedly had, but she was more interested in his history. It became uncomfortable and right before he was ready to push her away, she broke the meld and his mind was released.

“Leonard?” Stonn questioned.

Len blinked and realized that Stonn was next to him looking worried. “I’m fine,” he assured hi… the Vulcan.

“Your bond is not fully formed; if you wish I will dissolve it. You need not stay bonded to this human, Stonn, if it is not your desire,” T’Pau said.

“Don’t I get a say in this?” Len asked.

“No,” she responded.

Before Len could rant at the woman, Stonn spoke, “if it is Leonard’s desire to dissolve the bond, then I will release him; however, my choice is to leave it in place.” Stonn turned to his mate and stared at him waiting for a response.

To Len, Stonn looked hopeful, if such a thing was possible for a Vulcan; deciding to ask a question instead of answering Stonn’s question, “what would a dissolution of the bond do to T’Mir?”

“I would dissolve her bond as well. Stonn would be free to find a suitable wife and mother for his child,” T’Pau said.

“No,” Len said, shocking himself and Stonn.

“Very well. I shall arrange for a formal bonding ceremony to take place. You may leave. I shall contact Sarek with the arrangements.”

“Live long and prosper,” Stonn said.

“Peace and long life,” she intoned.

Stonn extended his arm to Leonard and Leonard took it allowing Stonn to propel them from the temple. “We shall speak once we are alone, Leonard.”

“Um… yeah… you can call me Len, if you want.”

“Len?”

“It’s a nickname. It’s short for Leonard.”

“Is that your preference?”

“Um… well, Leonard makes me think of when I was in trouble with my parents.”

“Then I will endeavor to call you Len. There is Ambassador Sarek.”

The Ambassador approached them and raised his hand in the ta’al. “Is everything acceptable?” he inquired.

“T’Pau will contact you with arrangements for a formal bonding ceremony,” Stonn replied, returning the gesture.

“Very well, I believe my wife is awaiting our arrival and she had prepared a meal for us to consume.”

“That is very thoughtful of her, Ambassador and much appreciated,” Len replied, trying to be on his best behavior around the hobgoblins.

“If you will follow me.”

All the formality was going to drive Len over the deep end, but he held his tongue and followed behind the Ambassador with his arm still through Stonn’s. He wasn’t really sure what Stonn was up to, but it was clear the man… Vulcan had some agenda. He seemed to want them to stay bonded, if what he said in the temple was true. Len wasn’t sure about being married to the hobgoblin, but he also wasn’t going to let T’Mir live on this hot planet with a bunch of judgmental, stuck-up Vulcans who would treat her as though she was lesser than them. If he and Stonn had to leave the Enterprise and move to Earth he would do it, but he hoped that Jim would find a way for the three of them to stay on the ship and ensure that T’Mir would have a life that was worthy of her.

Chapter Text

Jim pulled Bones away from the group as soon as he could. He had offered to clean the kitchen up for Amanda and dragged Bones along with him. He could tell his friend was tense and he needed to assure himself that nothing untoward happened to him.

“Spill,” he said.

“Nothing to spill, Jim.”

“Bullshit.”

“Jim….”

“Don’t Jim me, Bones. Look… I just need to know that you aren’t agreeing to this bonding against your will.”

“I’m not. In fact, Stonn offered to let me go, but I chose to stay married or bonded, whatever.”

Jim listened and looked for any deception from his friend and finding none he relented, “all right, but you know I would kick his ass if he did anything to harm you, right?”

Bones laughed at that, “yeah, Jim, I know. Come on, let’s get this cleaned up.”

******

Spock found Stonn outside in his mother’s garden, as he approached the other Vulcan he noticed Stonn looking up towards the stars. “What are you contemplating, Stonn?” he asked.

“The future, besu.”

“You have not called me that for many years.”

“True; however, not inaccurate. I must tell Len of our past, Spock.”

“Len?”

“His preferred address. He will tell your Jim once he knows.”

“I know this and I will tell Jim myself; it is only right. Could T’Pau not dissolve the bond between you and the doctor?”

“I did not wish it; I did offer to release Len from it, but he chose not to take the option.”

“Do you have feelings for him?”

“I find him fascinating. I am still grieving for my wife.”

“Do not toy with his emotions, Stonn.”

“I will not, Spock. T’Mir cares too much for him for me to harm him. She is special and Len understands some of her needs that I have difficulty with; it is a good match. A better match than another Vulcan would be,” Stonn said, turning to face Spock for the first time.

“How is she special Stonn?”

“She is not fully Vulcan; that is why we were not living on New Vulcan, I did not want her to be subjected to the prejudices that you experienced in your youth. Will we be allowed to stay aboard the Enterprise?”

“I do not know. Jim will not want to lose the doctor; they are very close.”

“How close?” Stonn asked, with a hard edge to his tone.

“Like brothers; not lovers.”

“Very well,” he said, his tone relaxing.

“Spock?” they heard Jim call out from the house.

“Yes, Jim?”

“We need to return to the ship. We can return in the morning if you like, but we have to take care of business as we are technically not on leave.”

“Of course, Jim.”

Spock and Stonn headed towards the house and upon entering it found Leonard trying to coax Amanda to give up T’Mir, “I’ll bring her back tomorrow, I promise, Lady Amanda.”

“Wife,” Sarek said, with a hint of sympathy in his voice.

“I know. Here you are Leonard, she is a beautiful child. Spock?”

“Yes, mother?”

“I want a grandchild. I don’t care if you have to adopt, but I want one,” Amanda said, pouting.

Spock was silent not certain how to respond to that, but Jim came to the rescue, “it’s a possibility for the future, Amanda.”

“You are such a good boy, Jim,” she smiled at him, brightly.

“Thank you, ma’am. Now, I hate to eat and run, but we really do need to return to the ship.”

“Most logical,” Sarek intoned.

After several minutes of good-byes and hugs from Amanda, the group were being beamed back up to the ship. Spock and Jim headed towards their quarters; while Bones and Stonn returned to the quarters that they had been sharing. Jim would have to work on Starfleet to ensure that he did not lose his CMO; he might have to call in some favors to allow it, but it would be worth it.

******

Len put T’Mir to bed as Stonn was meditating. Len wanted a shower before he went to bed; he was sweaty and dirty from the visit to the planet. He left T’Mir’s room and went to take a shower. He wished that he could use water, but he didn’t want to use all his water rations tonight, so a sonic shower would have to do. He really preferred water, but the sonic would work just as well and after he and Stonn had their bonding ceremony he would have a water shower. He was caught up in thought and did not notice that Stonn had entered the bathroom. He first became aware of the Vulcan when hands were placed on his shoulders. He jumped and stuttered out, “wha… what are you doing?”

“Thanking you.”

“For what? Oh… God… um… you’re naked,” Len said, in near panic.

“As are you and I am not planning on taking you, yet.”

“Yet,” Len, squeaked, not that he would ever admit that to anyone.

“Len we will one day need to take our relationship to a physical level.”

“I know, but… um… this is all new to me, Stonn.”

“Do you not care for me?”

“I… I might um… have some feelings for you. You have been really… um… not what I expected.”

“What did you expect?”

“Cold, heartless, and willing to take what you want.”

“I would never do that,” Stonn said, ghosting his lips over the back of Leonard’s neck,” please allow me to offer you a massage; nothing more.”

“Isn’t it um… illogical to offer massages?”

“There is nothing illogical in wishing to care for one’s mate, Len,” Stonn said, pressing his lips to the back of his mate’s neck.

“Oh, God,” Len whispered, arousal sparking though him.

“Is this acceptable?” Stonn asked, as he continued his gentle massaging of Len’s shoulders. He continued to lightly kissing his mate’s neck as well.

“Please,” Len pleaded.

“Please, what?”

“I… have no idea… that feels so damn good.”

Stonn turned Len around to face him; he leaned down slightly and carefully kissed his mate on the lips for the first time. The kiss was not passionate or demanding, but Len in his already heightened state of arousal was pushing himself closer to the Vulcan. Len wrapped his arms around the Vulcan’s neck and hung on for dear life as Stonn turned the chaste kiss into a dirty kiss, thrusting his tongue into Len’s mouth and exploring until all Len could think about was sucking on it. As suddenly as the kissing started, it stopped. Stonn pulled way and leaned his forehead against Len’s.

Confused, Len asked, “why… why did you stop?”

Stonn took a steadying breath before he spoke, “forgive me, Len. I know that you are not ready for more… I am drawn to you and lost my control; it will not happen again.” He released his mate and was stepping out of the shower when Len grabbed his arm to stop him.

“Now wait just a damn minute. You can’t just kiss someone like that and walk away. I know I said I’m not ready and I’m not, at least not for… well you know, but um… there are other things we can do and… well work our way up to the big… um… one.”

“What do you have in mind?”

“We... could continue to make out,” he said, tentatively.

“Make out?”

“Human term for kissing, like we were doing.”

“If that is your wish.”

“It is,” Len said, throwing caution to the wind and pulling the Vulcan back to him, he started to kiss him again. This time when he wrapped his arms around the Vulcan, Stonn picked him up, forcing Len to wrap his legs around his naked mate.

Stonn carefully carried his human mate out of the bathroom and towards the bed; sitting down on the bed he had a lap full of a very naked and aroused human. They continued to kiss until Len needed to breath and pulled away enough to bury his face in his mate’s neck. Len went to reach for his dick, but was stopped by Stonn.

Len whined, “please, Stonn.”

Stonn didn’t say anything, instead he placed his hand on Len’s dick and began to stroke him. Stonn kissed his mate again with more force as he stroked him; Len whined into Stonn’s mouth. Stonn stroked him faster and Len once again ripped his mouth away from Stonn’s to breath.

Len couldn’t hold back any longer and came with a quiet whimper; his whole body was shaking from his release as Stonn laid him down on the bed. Stonn retrieved a cloth and cleaned them both before he dressed Len and himself. He crawled into the bed behind his mate and wrapped his arms around him; the human was already asleep.

“Sleep, Kan-bu,” he said, before he too allowed sleep to pull him under.

Chapter Text

Jim and Spock entered their now shared quarters with Jim just behind the Vulcan; as soon as the door closed, Jim had Spock pushed up against the wall and was kissing him possessively. Spock moaned and Jim grinned at having gotten that reaction out of the normally taciturn Vulcan. Jim pulled back enough to let his Guide breathe, but not too far that he could get away from him. Something primal and fierce in Jim wanted to take and possess, but the rational side of his mind was holding him back. He felt the Vulcan submit to him and that was a situation he never would have thought possible; yes, he knew that Spock had willingly allowed Jim to take over as captain after he had been emotionally compromised by the destruction of Vulcan and the near loss of his mother, but he never thought he would allow him to take a domineering physical roll.

“Guide,” Jim whispered into Spock’s ear.

“Sentinel, please,” Spock said.

“Please what?”

“I… I… do not know.”

“God Spock I want you so much right now. Will you let me?”

“Please,” Spock whimpered.

The whimper from Spock turned Jim on even more; he pulled the Vulcan from the wall and pushed him towards the bed. When Spock’s legs bumped the bed Jim pushed him down and was on top of him kissing him again. Jim pulled away long enough to start removing his clothing and watching Spock do the same. When Spock was finally revealed to him, Jim was taken aback by how attractive his mate was and then he realized that he had never done anything like this before.

“Shit,” Jim said.

“Jim?”

“I want you so much, Spock, but I don’t… no that’s not right… I know the mechanics of sex with a woman and I know theoretically how this works with a guy, but I have never done this in practice. Well, except women, that is.”

“Ah… I have done this before with a male. If you will permit me, I could prepare myself?”

It was like ice water was dumped on Jim; Spock had had sex with a man before. It was irrational and stupid, but before Jim could stop himself, he demanded in a harsh tone, “who?” as a wave of jealousy ripped through him.

Spock’s eyes widened a fraction before he gained control of himself and they returned too normal; if Jim hadn’t been a Sentinel he would not have noticed it, he again demanded, “who, Spock?”

“Stonn, but it was many years ago.”

Jim growled and he laid on top of his mate, kissing him harshly; forcing his tongue into his mate’s mouth and exploring for a moment before he pulled back to rest their foreheads together, “I’m sorry. That was uncalled for. I know that you had other lovers before me, just as I had other lovers before you, but the thought of you with him makes me want to hunt him down and tear him apart.”

“That would be unwise. If you were to do that, I believe Doctor McCoy would be most unhappy.”

Jim chuckled, “yeah, Bones is kind of stupid over him, although he doesn’t know it yet. I have never been jealous before, Spock, I have no idea what came over me.”

“Perhaps it is the Sentinel/Guide bond. We were informed that it was wise to complete if sooner, rather than later.”

“Yeah,” Jim said, kissing his mate on the lips lightly. “Do you have anything to prepare yourself with?”

“Yes, I had anticipated that we would need it in the near future. Jim, perhaps it would be wise of me to inform you of all my previous sexual partners.”

“I thought it was just Stonn and Uhura.”

“There were two others, both females. Stonn was my only male lover.”

“I didn’t think Vulcans had casual sex.”

“That is a misconception, Jim. Vulcans do not prefer to have casual sex; however, we are not opposed to the concept. One was not casual at all, she was my wife, T’Pring.”

“Wait, I thought you said she died on Vulcan and I thought it was more of a childhood bonding.”

“Before I left Vulcan for Starfleet she had requested that we engage in an intimate relationship to see if we were compatible; we were not.”

“Wait, did you actually sleep with your boyfriend, before you slept with your wife?”

“Yes,” Spock said, lowering his eyes in shame.

“Hey, babe, look at me, please,” Jim said, once Spock did Jim spoke again, “what happened?”

“We were rivals for many years, but when we turned fourteen something changed between us. I would not say that I was in love with Stonn; however, it was not hate either. It would be akin to an experimental fling, to use a human term.”

“So the two of you were just fooling around and trying to decide what you liked?”

“Yes, with affection.”

“What stopped it?”

“T’Pring.”

“So your wife found out you were sleeping with your best friend and told you to stop and then decided after the two of you had sex that you were not compatible.”

“Yes.”

“Bitch,” Jim said.

“She was not the most pleasant of Vulcans.”

“So, who was the other woman you slept with?”

“A scientist that I meet when I first went to the academy. It meant more to her than it did to me; I was perhaps curious in regards to what sexual relations with a human female would be like and she was amenable.”

“Wow, I never thought you would be willing for that type of relationship. I take it that when you meet Uhura you decided to have a long term relationship with her and stop all the flings.”

“Yes, Nyota and I were, I thought compatible in body and mind; however, I have since revised my estimation of this.”

“How so?”

“I find that I am more passionate with a male.”

“Really?”

“Yes, I find that you are quite appealing physically and emotionally to me.”

“Emotions, Spock?” Jim teased.

“I may not show them Jim, but I do have them. I will try to show them to you, though,” Spock said, almost shyly.

Jim’s heart swelled at Spock’s statement, but he had one more question before he and Spock consummated their bond, “top or bottom?”

“I do not understand?”

“When you were with Stonn did you top or did you bottom?”

“If I am understanding you correctly, you are asking if I was the submissive or the dominate partner in our sexual relationship.”

“Yes.”

“Both.”

“Okay. Um… for this first time I think I need to be on top; after I don’t think I will be bothered by switching.”

“That is good, since during pon farr, I will be on top, as you say.”

“Really?” Jim said, as he moved to allow Spock to get up and retrieve the supplies needed.

“Yes, it is a compulsion, or so I am told.”

“Hum… so if you and Stonn are the same age, why has he had a pon farr already and you have not?”

“I believe it is due to my mixed heritage; however, if what my counterpart has said is true, I shall experience my own in approximately seven years’ time.”

“So, in seven years we get to have uncontrolled, wild Vulcan sex?”

Spock did not dignify that with a response.

Jim laughed at Spock’s affronted look; he grabbed his mates hand and pulled him back to the bed and began to kiss him once more. Spock acquiesced and became pliant to Jim’s ministrations, allowing his Sentinel to shower his body with kisses. Jim’s hands roved over all of Spock, never missing a sensitive spot until he had Spock so relaxed that when his orgasm happened he was taken by complete surprise.

He was still shaking when a finger breached his entrance, but there was no resistance. The second finger that entered him, brought him to awareness. He couldn’t help but ask his mate, “I believed you were unfamiliar with the mechanics of homosexual sex.”

“Hm… yes, in practice, but not in theory. Also, I sort of gleaned it from your mind.”

“Gleaned, Jim?”

“Yeah, one of the perks of mating with a Sentinel with a slight ability for telepathy.”

“Jim?”

“Can we talk about this after were done?” Jim said, adding a third finger and stretching Spock more.

Spock’s breath hitched as Jim brushed over his sensitive spot inside and just nodded his agreement. Spock wasn’t sure he would last much longer, even with his Vulcan control, because Jim had taken to not only thrusting his fingers inside of him, but to sucking on his member in the most delicious way. When Spock orgasmed for the second time in less than ten point five minutes he did not think he would be able to move until morning or get hard again, but when Jim pushed into him that thought was dispelled. Spock felt his member become hard faster than he could imagine. He had a fleeting thought that perhaps this is what pon farr would be like, but was brought back to Jim as his mate began to thrust into him with abandon.

Jim could feel his orgasm approaching; he had enjoyed bringing his Guide off twice before he entered him. He now had his taste on his lips and his scent in his nose; he could feel every inch of his Guide’s skin on his finger tips and the wonderful tight, hot, feeling surrounding his dick as he thrust over and over again into his mate. He could hear his mate’s Vulcan heart beat to its own unique rhythm, but it wasn’t enough; he needed more.

“Meld with me, Spock, now,” Jim demanded. Jim was a selfish bastard; he wanted all of Spock, not just body and soul, but he wanted his mind too. He craved it, just as he craved his body. Jim felt Spock’s fingers on his face over his meld points and in an instant Spock was in his mind and his heart. They came with the others name on their lips.

Chapter Text

Len stared down at the box of chocolates in his hands; what the hell? Stonn had come in and handed it to him; it had been wrapped in red paper with a large white bow on it, Len had no idea what he was supposed to say or do with them. Well he knew that he could eat the chocolates, but why was Stonn giving them to him and where the hell had he found them anyway. Ugh, the annoying Vulcan was so confusing to Len that he just wanted him to… he didn’t know what he wanted.

“Do you not like them?” Stonn asked.

“No… um… I mean yes, I like them. I’m just confused as to why?”

“Is it not a human tradition to give gifts to a potential romantic partner?”

“Um… well, yes, it is. I just… I’m usually the one giving the gifts not receiving them.”

“Ah… would you prefer to court me, instead?”

“Court?” Len squeaked.

“I was informed that it would be best to court you, to gain your favor.”

“Why would you wish to gain my favor?”

“You are my mate; why would I not wish to have your favor?”

“Stonn, is this a bribe so that I will stay with you?”

“No, I would not wish to keep you if you wish to leave.”

“Stonn, sit.”

Stonn sat in the chair across from Len. Taking a deep breath, Len began, “Stonn, I’m not going to walk away from you now, especially after last night.”

“I should not have approached you as such, it was inappropriate.”

“It wasn’t inappropriate; it was just sooner than I thought. Stonn, maybe we should actually get to know each other, it might help.”

“What do you wish to know?”

“Well, how did you meet T’Mir’s mother?”

“Spock is the only hybrid with human heritage; however, my wife was a hybrid as well. Her father had been an ambassador to Betzed; he was un-bonded as his first wife died in child birth. He was exposed to a chemical that forced him to enter pon farr early and he would have perished had he not bonded with a Betaziod woman. It was not known that Vulcans and Betaziods were genetically compatible; however, we are and she became pregnant. My future wife was born from their union.”

“That would explain T’Mir’s unusual vitals. So, what was her name?”

“N’Vea. She was left on Betazed to be raised by her mother, while her father returned to Vulcan.”

“He left his wife and daughter there?”

“Betaziods are a matriarchal society; Vulcans are not.”

“He father was ashamed that he had a child who was not pure Vulcan.”

“Yes.”

“How did you meet her if she wasn’t living on Vulcan?”

“I was sent to Betazed after an indiscretion was discovered.”

“What did you do?”

“I am perhaps not the most Vulcan of Vulcans. I… fell in love with someone I should not have, or perhaps it is more accurate to say I fell in love with someone my family would not have approved of.”

“Who?”

“Spock.”

“What!?”

“We were rivals as children, but when we turned fourteen I found him fascinating. I pursued him until he finally relented and we began an intimate relationship.”

“You convinced, by the book Spock, to have sex with you?”

“Yes.”

“I’m going to regret this; if you were in love with Spock, why did you end it?”

“His wife discovered our relationship. She demanded that he end it and threated to inform our parents. I… reluctantly ended it. I would have forsaken my family legacy to be with him; however, he was not in love with me.”

“Spock’s married? Does Jim know this?”

“T’Pring was killed when Vulcan was destroyed; I do not regret her passing.”

“What the hell did she do to you?”

“I rejected her advances. She had become enamored with me and wished to convince Spock to release her from their union so that she and I could become bonded. I informed her that even if Spock did release her, I would not bond with her, as I was in love with another. She then found us in a compromising position. It was prudent for his sake to end our relationship. I once again refused her advances and she informed my parents of my love for Spock.”

“Bitch,” Len muttered, “what happened after that?”

“I was sent to fill an open security position at the Vulcan Embassy on Betazed. That is where I met N’Vea.”

“You fell in love.”

“No. I felt compassion for N’Vea. She was alone and she had never been trained in the ways of our people. She had deep emotions that could be violent at times; Betaziods were not equipped to handle her. Her father should have brought her to Vulcan with him so that she could have found a mate and been trained in the ways of logic. I chose to marry her to protect her, but she was not what I desired. I cared for her and would not have chosen to separate from her, but she was not my preferred partner.”

“Spock,” Len said, dropping his head to look at his hands.

“At the time yes, but now, I believe that my desires lie elsewhere.”

“I don’t understand?”

“Len, I grieve for my wife, but only as a lost friend and companion. We were only intimate when necessary. My preferences are not with females.”

“Oh… um… you mean that you actually prefer men over women?”

“Yes.”

“Wait… wait… you mean that you prefer me over your dead wife.”

“Leonard, I find you intriguing and as illogical as this maybe; I am grateful that it was you who I connected with.”

“Wow.”

“I do grieve for my wife; however, it is more for the loss of a friend than a mate. I once again apologize for my behavior last evening; it has been many years since I felt a desire to be with one sexually and you are quite tempting.”

“Ko-mekh,” Len heard T’Mir call him from her bedroom door.

“Come here, sweetheart,” he said. The little girl came willingly and climbed into his lap without hesitation. Smiling down at her he said, “T’Mir, how about you call me Papa instead of mother, since I am definitely not a woman or your mother?”

Len could tell she was thinking about it; she looked to her father before she responded, “Papa,” she said, as she turned in his lap and kissed his cheek, “I’m hungry.”

Len laughed at that, he kissed her on the top of the head, “of course you are darlin’. How about we get you dressed and the three of us go get some food in the mess?”

“That would be prudent,” Stonn said. He stood and took T’Mir from Len’s arms, “come T’Mir, I shall dress you this morning,” he said, as he extended two fingers towards Len; Len copied the motion and gave his mate a Vulcan kiss.

Chapter Text

Spock was squirming in his seat when Jim arrived at the table with his breakfast tray. Well, Jim didn’t think anyone would actually notice that Spock was shifting in his seat more than usual, but he did and he knew why. He smirked to himself and received a Vulcan death glare from his mate at how illogically happy he was his mate was sore and Jim was the cause. Jim knew that any Vulcan Spock came into contact with would know he was taken and who he belonged to. It should bother Jim that he felt possessive towards Spock, because in all his years of sexual exploits he never once felt so consumed and so possessive of any lover, even Carol.

Spock narrowed his eyes and gave a low growl when Jim thought about Carol Marcus. Jim patted him on the hand and whispered, “sorry, babe. I guess I’m not the only one who is possessive, huh.”

“Forgive me, Jim, that was uncalled for. I do not know what came over me.”

“I think it’s the Sentinel and Guide bond doing it to us,” Jim sighed.

“Perhaps we should meditate prior to returning to New Vulcan.”

“That might be a good idea,” Jim said, he turned his head towards the doors at that moment, hearing Bones and his Vulcan entering the mess and Jim instantly knew that something was different between them. He could smell that Bones… Jim turned back around to face his food and took a sip of his coffee to try and cover his embarrassment at finding his best friend had slept with the Vulcan. He wasn’t embarrassed that he knew his friend had sex with the Vulcan it was that he could smell it on him and that sort of made him think of all the people he could come in contact with and just know they had sex; that was just too disturbing. He wasn’t sure if he wanted to know that much about his crew; he shuttered at the thought.

“Jim?” Spock asked.

“I’ll tell you later. Hey, Bones.”

“Jim, Spock… morning,” Bones smiled at them.

“Stonn,” Jim growled, stiffening as the Vulcan can into view and took a seat at the table.

Bones rolled his eyes at Jim’s posturing, “down boy, he doesn’t want Spock.”

Sheepishly, Jim replied, “sorry, I think that the bond is still too new for us to be out in public without me getting a little um… growly.”

The group was interrupted by the arrival of Jim’s yeoman, Janis Rand, “Captain, sorry to interrupt your breakfast, but I need you to sign off of these before you return to the planet.”

“Not a problem, Yeoman,” Jim said, taking the PADD from her and reading through it; he was interrupted by a low angry growl coming from Stonn. Jim blinked at him thinking he was being growled at, but then realized that Stonn was growling at his yeoman. Jim noticed it then; she was aroused and it was directed at the doctor. She jumped a bit and Jim watched as Bones rolled his eyes at his mate and placed a hand on the Vulcan’s shoulder in the hopes to calm him down. Jim decided that getting the woman out of the Vulcans sight might be a good idea, “Yeoman, I’ll leave this in my ready room for you, dismissed.”

“Um… yes, sir,” she said, turning and retreating quickly out of the room.

The silence at the table was broken by Stonn speaking, “I believe you are correct, Captain, it is too soon to be in public. I require meditation, Leonard.”

“Yeah… all right… um, do you need me there?”

“Yes,” Stonn gritted out, as he stood from the table and removed his tray.

“Right behind you,” Bones said, shooting his best friend a look that said, what the hell.

“It’s the bond, Bones. Go, your off duty until it’s resolved.”

“Jim, I…”

“Leonard,” Stonn said.

“Hold your horse, damn hobgoblin,” Bones grumbled, following his mate out of the room.

Jim opened his mouth to say something to Spock, but was stopped by the arrival of Uhura, Scotty, Sulu, and Chekov to their table.

“What was that about?” Scotty asked.

“It is not your business, Mister Scott,” Spock said, primly.

“I’m not too sure about that Commander,” Sulu piped up.

“Why?” Jim asked.

“Because we ran into a very upset Janis on our way in here,” Uhura replied.

Jim cringed; he really didn’t want to expose everyone’s personal business, but he also couldn’t allow everyone to think that Stonn was a threat to the crew.  Sighing, Jim spoke, “it’s just that Bones and Stonn’s bond is really new and it would be wise to let everyone on the ship know to keep their distance from them, right now. It will pass.”

“They seemed fine with you, Captain,” Sulu said.

“That would be because Stonn does not perceive the Captain as a threat for his mate’s affections,” Spock responded.

“Oh, that explains it,” Uhura smiled at them.

The group ate in silence after that until Jim stood and looked at Spock, “you need to meditate, babe.”

“Yes, that would be agreeable,” Spock said, standing and taking his tray with him towards the recycler.

“Babe?” Sulu mouthed, as the other two men left the room.

Uhura just shook her head, “we are in so much trouble with those two.”

“I did not think Commander Spock would find pet names logical or acceptable. I never heard you call him anything similar, Uhura,” Chekov wondered.

“I never did. You’re right, he found them illogical, but I guess where the Captain is concerned he doesn’t mind.”

“Just be grateful that we aren’t on any missions right now, lad,” Scotty said.

They all looked at each other and just nodded agreement.

******

When Jim and Spock entered their quarters, Spock immediately began to prepare for meditation. He had not done so since they had bonded and he was certain he needed to find his center. Jim finished off his most recent reports while Spock prepared; he smiled at his mate’s meticulous preparations for meditation. Jim wandered over to Spock once he was finished set up and sat down practically in the Vulcan’s lap.

“Jim?”

“I want to be close to you right now, please,” Jim begged.

Unable to deny his mate, Spock sighed and wrapped his arms around the other man. He found his center and was soon returned to the strange jungle.

Jim opened his eyes to the sound of someone clearing their throat; he found Blair watching him with undisguised curiosity.   He opened his mouth to offer a greeting and realized that even in this strange place, he was still in Spock’s lap.

“You bonded,” Blair said, with a smile.

“Yeah,” Jim said, feeling his face become warm.

“Do you have any questions?”

“Yes. I feel I need to be around him all the time; how long will this last?”

“The bond should settle in about a week.”

“Imprecise language,” Spock whispered, in Jim’s ear.

“Be nice Spock.”

“Forgive me Jim, it would be appropriate to know how long we shall need to be close to each other. You do have a ship to run.”

“I know, babe.”

“Aw, newlyweds,” a new voice said.

Spock and Jim looked towards the sound and found a rather strikingly handsome man sitting next to Gibbs. He was brunette and had hazel eyes that were almost green. Jim instinctively understood that this new person was another Sentinel, but he also knew he was not a threat to his Guide, so he relaxed back into Spock’s arms.

“See Jethro, if they can cuddle while here we could, too,” the man pouted.

Jethro rolled his eyes at the man next to him; in the past he would have given him a head slap, but once Tony accepted him as his Guide, Tony made his displeasure known regarding that little quirk.

“We can cuddle all you want in private, Tony.”

The man turned to face Jim and Spock, “Anthony DiNozzo, Junior, but you can call me Tony. I’m his Sentinel,” he said, pointing towards Gibbs.

“James T. Kirk and this is my Guide Spock,” Jim replied.

“Nice to meet you.”

“I can’t believe you talked me into his, McKay. You know I hate meditating,” a new voice said.

Jim and Spock turned towards it and found another man with black spiky hair scowling at Rodney.

“Gee, maybe that is why Teyla is always beating you up,” Rodney said.

“Fighting again,” Blair said.

“No, we never fight,” the new man said, he finally noticed the two new people in the group, “hey, Colonel John Sheppard.”

“Captain James T. Kirk and my Guide and bond-mate Spock,” Jim said.

“What branch?” another new voice asked.

Jim turned to find two more unfamiliar faces, “Starfleet,” Jim said.

“General Jack O’Niell, Sentinel, I think you already meet my Guide, Daniel.”

“Yes,” Jim said, nodding towards the final new person in this very strange group.

“Jim Ellison, Blair is my Guide.”

“Nice to meet everyone,” Jim said.

“Questions,” Blair piped up.

“Yes. How long will we need to be close to each other,” Spock asked.

“It depends on the individual pair, but most will be able to be farther apart in five days.”

“Thank you,” Spock replied.

“After that, how long can we be apart and how far?”

“Why?” Blair asked.

“Because, I’m the captain of a star ship and he’s my First Officer. There are times that we have to be apart from each other, either on an away mission or while he is preforming his duties as the Science Officer.”

“Well, you will not want to be apart from him for very long,” Tony said.

“Yeah, it will irritate your bond,” John said, cringing.

“Besides, Sentinels and Guides are meant to work together,” Daniel piped up.

“That might be difficult as we are the only ones that know about this connection,” Jim said.

“Do not worry, T’hy’la, we do not need to be concerned as our Vulcan marriage bond will allow for us to stay together on missions and the ship.”

“Really, because I know that your parents aren’t always together.”

“That is true; however, their bond is simply a marriage bond, our bond is a T’hy’la bond. It is sacred among my people and as such it is protected by the Federation charter.”

“Meaning that Starfleet can’t object to us being together all the time,” Jim smiled at Spock.

“Yes, Jim. Now I have another question; Blair you spoke of Sentinels with a sixth sense, what is that sense?”

“Empathy, but it is extremely rare.”

“James,” Spock said; it was neither statement or question, but Jim could hear the demand in Spock’s voice.

“Damn eidetic memory and Vulcan hearing,” Jim muttered.

“James,” Spock said, again.

“Fine. Yes, I have telepathic and empathic abilities.”

“That is not listed in your Starfleet or your medical records. You are fully human and humans are psy-null.”

“All true. The reason it doesn’t appear in my records is because I’ve always been able to fool the tests,” Jim said, shrugging.

“Jim, the tests are fool-proof. It is…” Spock began, but was interrupted by Jim.

“Spock, sweetheart, you know that is not true. You are a much more powerful telepath than Starfleet knows. Your people might know how powerful you are, but you were able to trick the test.”

Spock opened his mouth to speak, but nothing came out and instead he just nodded in acquiesces.

“After much research on my part, and dubious other people who were willing to leave the information off my official record, for a price, I believe that my telepathy occurred from the radiation that I was exposed to when I was born. It altered my DNA on a fundamental level and I might have been empathic, due to the Sentinel gifts, but maybe it enhanced it.”

“Doctor McCoy.”

Jim laughed, “no, actually, Bones doesn’t know any of this. He knows I’m smart and have some unexplained allergies, but he thinks it’s all medical.”

“We did tell him about your Sentinel abilities,” Spock reminded Jim.

“Yeah, but I really don’t think he thinks it’s real and I kind of think he forgot about it with the whole Stonn thing. Too much other stuff on his mind and it’s a good thing because he would have me in sick bay running tests all day long. I hate sick bay.”

“Perhaps you are correct in your assumption of the Doctor’s preoccupation. Do you have this research documented?”

“Yeah, and I’m guessing you want to read it later.”

“Affirmative.”

“Fine, but I really don’t want it out in the open, Spock.”

“I understand, Jim.”

The sound of a throat clearing brought Jim and Spock back to the fact that they were not alone. They looked up to find the group staring at them with undisguised interest.

“I’m guessing you guys have questions for me?” Jim said.

“Your empathic… we haven’t had a true recorded empathic Sentinel in nearly sixty years,” Blair said.

“I wish I could answer your questions about all of this, but since there are no records of Sentinels or Guides in our databases… I really don’t know much about it.”

“Yeah, about that,” Rodney spoke up, “are you two positive that there are no records, even mythical, about Sentinels and Guides?”

“Yes, I have made an extensive search of all Federation records, both historical and mythological, but nothing has been found. However, it is possible that the records were lost during the eugenics wars of the early 1990’s.”

“Yeah, too bad Khan is such an ass or we could unfreeze him and ask,” Jim joked.

“Wait, did you say eugenics wars of the early 1990’s? The late twentieth century?” Rodney asked.

“Yeah, it was one of the main causes that lead to World War Three in 2026, why?”

“Because that hasn’t happened in our universe. How is it possible for two such differing universes to have a connection? All the parallel universes we have encountered are close to ours; yours is extremely different,” Rodney wondered.

“He’s right Spock,” Jim said.

“I do not understand, Jim.”

“When your counterpart melded with me, he didn’t count on me picking up on other memories. I remember an incident on his Enterprise that had his Kirk switching places with another Kirk, but the new Kirk was pure evil and crazy. Instead of the Federation it was the Empire.”

“You have encountered other parallel universes?” Rodney asked.

“We haven’t, but the other Spock has.”

“The other Spock?”

“Oh, yeah… um… well you see… how do I… a particular troubled Romulan traveled back in time and he was followed by future Spock, unfortunately, when Nero, that was the Romulan’s name, anyway, when Nero came back in time he altered history. He ended up destroying the ship my parents were on and killing my father… well, technically, my father rammed his ship into the Romulan’s trying to save the crew. That’s how I was born in space, my mother was in labor during the whole incident; of course, we didn’t know that Nero was from the future until a few years ago when he attacked and destroyed Vulcan,” Jim said.

“I… huh…” Rodney said.

“I know that sound; Rodney, what are you thinking?” John asked.

Rodney hesitated to speak, “not sure yet. I need to consult with Sam, Radek, and Jonas before I can confirm any theories.”

“Just don’t do anything stupid,” John warned.

Ignoring his Sentinel’s comment, Rodney said, “maybe you two could talk to the other Spock about his experiences with alternate universes?”

“He has been hesitant to interfere in our timeline; however, if it is important we could try,” Spock said.

“I think it could be,” Rodney said.

“Very well, we shall try,” Spock said, nodding.

“Hey, Spock, I think we need to go, because if we are late to see your mother, she might just give us an earful.”

“Yes, that is most wise.”

“Bye,” Jim said, as he and Spock began to fade away.    

“Want to explain your theory, Rodney?” John tried again, once the other pair left.

“Not really,” he replied.

“Try,” Jack demanded.

Taking a deep breath, Rodney began, “I think… mind you I could be wrong… I think that those two appearing here and having the Sentinel/Guide genes should not be possible.”

“You mean that they are not from that universe?” Daniel asked.

“No, they are from that universe; what I think is that somehow Sentinels and Guides are being born in their universe and that should not be happening.”

“Rodney, we have found other Sentinels and Guides from parallel universes before,” Daniel countered.

“Yes, but we also know that in all those universes the Ancients altered our genes to make Sentinels and Guides; that can’t be the case for them as they have no knowledge of Stargates or Sentinels and Guides.”

“It’s possible it was lost during their wars,” Blair added.

“Possible, but not probable. Spock is proof of that. We have been to several different galaxies and have yet to find one similar to him, but they haven’t even left their own galaxy yet and have encounter many different races. We know of two that they mentioned, Vulcans and Romulans; if they existed here, we would have encountered them already. No, no, I really need to speak to Sam about this… this could be a really big problem for us.”

“Rodney?” John asked, concern lacing his voice.

“Like universe ending problem, John,” Rodney said, fear in his voice.

Chapter Text

Jim and Spock had just finished their visit with Amanda and Sarek and were headed to meet with the other Spock. Jim hadn’t seen him since Delta Vega and he was kind of looking forwards to a visit. Bones and Stonn’s bonding ceremony was to take place the following day; once that was completed the Enterprise would be leaving New Vulcan and returning to her mission. Jim had an irrational urge to hold his mate’s hand, but refrained as they were surrounded by disapproving Vulcans. As they approached the older Spock’s residence, Jim smiled to himself at the sight of a wind chime hanging from one of the eves of the house right in front of a window. It wasn’t the wind chime that surprised Jim, but that it had a replica of the Enterprise hanging down from it. It seemed extremely sentimental for someone who was all about logic. Spock knocked on the front door and they waited for his counterpart to open it.

“Jim… Spock… it is good to see you, please, enter,” the old man said.

“Thank you,” Jim said, smiling at the older version of his mate.

“I must admit that I was somewhat surprised to hear that you were on Vulcan and wished to communicate.”

“We know that you do not want to interfere in our timeline, but we thought you should know about our status,” Jim replied.

“Status?”

“Yes, we are bonded,” young Spock said.

Old Spock was silent for a time, “that is most unexpected.”

“Why? You and your Jim had a T’hy’la bond, we just discovered ours earlier,” Jim said.

“Yes, we did; however, Jim and I never bonded beyond friendship and brotherhood. Neither of us saw the other as a potential mate. Forgive me, I should be offering you congratulations.”

“Thank you, but I’m confused, didn’t you love your Jim?” Jim asked.

“I… cared a great deal for my captain and friend, but romantic love was not for us; however, this does solidify my belief that I should not interfere in this timeline.”

“That has a potential to be problematic, Ambassador,” Spock said.

“How so, young one?”

“We have come into information that perhaps you may have information pertinent to our needs.”

Old Spock looked at young Spock with a frustrated look, “please restate.”

“Let me, babe,” Jim said, “you see, we need to know what you know about alternate universes.”

“Theory only,” old Spock said.

“Now I know that’s not true, Spock,” Jim said.

“The meld.”

“Yeah, look, I think that you and Nero coming here may have altered more than you originally thought.”

“How so?”

Taking a deep breath, Jim asked, “what do you know about Sentinels and Guides?”

“I am not entirely certain as to what you are referring to. I do know the definition of the words; however, I do not believe that is what your query is.”

“You would be right about that. Look… I’m a Sentinel and Spock is my Guide.”

“What is a Sentinel?”

“A Sentinel is a person who has enhanced senses. We protect the tribe.”

“You have heighted senses, most fascinating.”

“Yeah, that’s one word for it.”

“If your Jim was not your Sentinel, then it is possible that there are more differences in the timeline than first thought,” Jim’s Spock said.

“Yes, quite possible. You are a… guide?”

“Affirmative.”

“What is your particular role?” older Spock asked, he was quite curious about this new development.

“I help to focus Jim and offer him a center to prevent his senses from overcoming him.”

“Most fascinating.”

“Yes, you have said that already.”

“Spock be nice,” Jim said.

“Forgive me, Ambassador.”

“I have taken no offence, young one. As I cannot offer my assistance in this particular matter, do you have any other questions for me?”

“Yeah, um… when your Jim switched places with the evil Jim, what can you tell us?”

“Ah… since many things have changed, it might be prudent to tell you that particular mission. There was an ion storm and Captain Kirk, Doctor McCoy, Lieutenant Uhura, and Mister Scott were all transported to a parallel universe. I realized the switch immediately; however, unable to do anything about it, I threw the imposters into the brig. It was a very violent group and from what the others explained in their reports, the parallel universe was quite violent; very different from ours. I do not know how this will help, but that is all I know.”

“It was different, yes, but the ship still existed and so did the Federation,” Jim stated.

“Yes; however, it was the Terran Empire, not the Federation.”

“Okay, thank you, Spock. I know that you do not want to interfere with our timeline, but this could be really important; I just don’t know how, yet.”

“You are most welcome, Jim.”

They were silent for a time, but Jim being Jim, broke it, “so you and your Jim weren’t lovers, weird.”

“We were not, my Jim was my friend, my captain, and a brother, but he was, as human’s say, a ladies’ man,” Older Spock said, with tiny smile.

“Well so was I until Spock here,” Jim laughed.

“We should depart, Jim. Tomorrow we shall be needed for the bonding ceremony.”

“Yeah, well it was good to see you again, Spock,” Jim smiled at the older version of his mate.

“You are having a bonding ceremony tomorrow?”

“Oh, no, not us, Bones,” Jim said, smirking.

Old Spock blinked, he blinked again, shook his head and looked between Jim and his younger self, “perhaps I misheard you Jim, but I believe I heard you say that Doctor McCoy is having a bonding ceremony.”

“No, you didn’t mishear. It’s the talk all over the ship,” Jim said, bouncing on his toes.

“I… I believe I need to sit down,” older Spock said.

“Are you feeling well Ambassador?” Spock questioned.

“Yes… I am… may I ask who is Doctor McCoy bonding with?”

“Stonn,” young Spock replied.

“T’Pring’s Stonn?”

“Stonn refused T’Pring.”

Older Spock opened his mouth and then closed it, shaking his head he tried again, “may I assume that you and T’Pring never fully bonded?”

“That would be correct. Did you and your T’Pring bond?”

“No, she wished for Stonn and Stonn wanted her. She challenged our bond during my Pon Farr and chose Jim as her champion. I had to fight my Captain; he lost.”

“You killed your T’hy’la?” Spock said, unable to keep the shock and anger out of his voice.

“No, Doctor McCoy used a neural paralyzer on Jim while we were fighting; he claimed he was giving the captain a tri-ox compound to help him breathing, but instead he simulated death and the fires of Pon Farr burned out when I thought I killed my captain.”

“Why did T’Pring not wish to finish bonding to you?”

“I had become too well known among Vulcans and others; she did not wish to be the wife of someone so famous,” Spock said, with a slight upturn of his lips.

“I’m really glad I never meet her; she seemed to be a bitch in both timelines,” Jim said.

“Yes, may I ask what she did to you, my young friend?” older Spock asked his counterpart.

“She…,” Spock started, but was unable to finish.

Jim stepped in for him, he could sense his mate’s embarrassment, “from what I got out of Spock here, was that he and um… Stonn had a… um… illicit affair when they were teenagers. T’Pring found out and ordered it to stop, Spock ended it… not sure how long he and Stonn were together.”

“Fascinating… this timeline is very much altered from mine. Forgive my curiosity Spock, but to find out that you were intimate with another male is quite startling. I was never rivals with Stonn, nor was I on friendly terms with him. I believe that Nero did much more than just alter the large details, but his arrival seems to have had drastic consciences to the timeline.”

“So it would seem,” Spock said, stiffly.

“You will find as you age and are around humans Spock that speaking of taboo subjects becomes much easier. Yes, Pon Farr can be unpleasant, but I believe we have clouded it in such mystery that it has damaged many a young Vulcan. I am old, Spock, and as such, I find subjects such as Pon Farr less distasteful than I once did; you will see, age changes many things.”

“I do not believe I will ever speak of our Time in such a casual way,” Spock retorted.

“Um… if you weren’t bonded to your Jim or T’Pring; how did you survive it?” Jim asked.

“Ah, I found ways to… sate my desires,” older Spock said.

“Okay, on that note I think I better get my mate out of here before he has a heart attack, but you and I will need to have a conversation soon, old man.”

“Of course, Jim. I have been and always shall be your friend; live long and prosper,” older Spock said, raising his hand in a ta’al.

Once Jim and Spock left older Spock’s house, Jim said, “well that was an interesting conversation.”

Spock just scowled at him and walked off in a huff towards their transporter destination, with Jim’s laughter following him.

Chapter Text

Jim was angry; no, he was pissed. He was missing out on his best friends bonding ceremony so he could talk to the admirals, all of them. He was on the transporter pad just waiting to beam down to the surface of New Vulcan when Uhura informed him that he had an urgent communique from Starfleet; turned out that it was the entire Admiralty of Starfleet. He looked at the group on the screen in his ready room and asked, “what can I do for the Admiralty today?”

“Captain Kirk we have been reviewing your latest reports regarding the status of your chief medical officer, Doctor Leonard McCoy,” Admiral Komack said.

“What about him, sir?”

“You have requested that he be allowed to remain on-board the Enterprise with his Vulcans,” Komack replied.

“Yes, sir.”

“Your ship is not build for families, Kirk.”

“No, it wasn’t, sir.”

“Then don’t you see the problem with these Vulcans staying on-board?”

“Admirals,” Jim said, taking a deep breath before beginning again, “I understand your concern regarding the situation; however, Doctor McCoy is bonding to a Vulcan and he already has a parental bond with T’Mir. I cannot in good conscience ask him to leave them behind on New Vulcan or Earth, just because we were not originally build to have families. Giving us a five-year mission and asking the crew to hold off on having families and seeing their loved ones during that time is asking a great deal of them; it also makes many of them not want to continue their service with Starfleet, sirs.”

“What do you propose, Jim?” Admiral Pike asked.

“Well, I think allowing T’Mir and Stonn to stay aboard the ship will be a step in the right direction to allowing more families on ships.”

“It’s dangerous on ships, Kirk,” Barnett said.

“True, but being planet side isn’t any safer; as the destruction of Vulcan proves.”

“That was an anomaly, Kirk,” Kormack said, dismissively.

“With all due respect, sir, no it was not an anomaly; just ask the survivors of Tarsus IV.”

Everyone was quiet after that; the silence was broken by Admiral Archer, although retired he still held sway with the current Admiralty, Starfleet, and the Federation, “my helmsmen, Mayweather, made a similar argument during my time as Captain of my Enterprise, Kirk. In fact, he was born and grew up on a transport cargo ship. He probably knew more about space than anyone on our ship, including me and my first officer. I say, let him keep his doctor and his doctor’s family on the ship, it might just bring morale up and increase our recruitment efforts, gentlemen. Besides, gentlemen, I think that Captain Kirk and his crew deserve a bit of leeway for all the times they have saved us.”

Jim was smart enough to keep his mouth shut when he was winning and had someone like Jonathan Archer on his side. Jim heard the murmurs of agreements from the other admirals and he released the breath he was holding; he would get his way.

“Very well, Captain, you may keep the Vulcans aboard the ship,” Komack reluctantly agreed.

“Thank you, sirs.”

Before Jim could end the communication, Archer spoke again, “oh, Captain, if you happen to see T’Pau before you leave, tell her that Jonathan Archer says hello.”

“Of course, sir,” Jim said. He plopped his ass down in his chair as soon as the call ended. That had been more stressful than meeting Spock’s parents. He decided to head to the transporter room to see if he still had time to make it to Bones’ ceremony; just as he was leaving his ready room, the door opened and Spock was standing on the other side.

“Hey,” Jim said.

“Jim.”

“So, I’m guessing I missed the ceremony?”

“That would be correct. How did your conversation with the Admiral go?”

“Try the entire Admiralty.”

“All of them?”

“Yes, including Archer.”

“May I assume that this was in regards to Stonn and T’Mir?”

“Yeah, walk with me,” Jim said, as he left his ready room. “I ‘convinced’ them to allow both T’Mir and Stonn to stay aboard, but I have a feeling that if anything really bad happens they will use it against me, well, Komack will.”

“I see.”

“Yeah, so are we having a party for the newlyweds?”

“No, they have retreated to a residence that my father secured for them and T’Mir is currently with my mother. It might be advantageous that T’Mir is being allowed to stay aboard the ship, as my mother is quite insistent in her desire for grandchildren; even adopted.”

“Please tell me she didn’t contact anyone regarding adopting?”

“I cannot, as that would be a lie.”

“Do you think we can convince her that we would like to spend time as a couple before we add more to our family?”

Spock was silent.

“Spock?”

Spock stayed silent.

“Dammit, Spock!”

“Have you spoken to your mother, recently, Jim?”

Jim didn’t say a word, he just kept walking and if he had glanced at his mate, he would have seen the smallest hint of a smile on the Vulcan’s face.

Chapter Text

Len was nervous, he hadn’t expected to be whisked away to a secluded house right after the bonding ceremony. The house was small, but comfortable. It was decorated in all neutral Earth… Vulcan colors and thankfully it was quite cool inside. Stonn had left him to patrol the outside of the house and secure it from predators; however, Len wasn’t sure what predators New Vulcan had. He decided to sit down on what passed for a couch on New Vulcan and wait for his mate to return. The heat had gotten to him when they were out in what amounted to the middle of the desert waiting for T’Pau to fully bond them. He closed his eyes and leaned his head back against the couch, grateful that it was soft and not some rock-hard thing. He was started from his rest by the sound of Stonn returning to the house.

“Stonn?” he called out.

“It is I.”

“Good, um… so… what happened now?”

“We are expected to mate.”

“Oh… um… all right.”

“I said we are expected not required to mate, Leonard.”

“Oh….”

“If you wish you could rest while I meditate; it has been several days since I mediated.”

“Yeah… um… is there a shower here?”

“Sonic perhaps, I am uncertain if there is a water shower.”

“I’ll go see and get some of this dust off me,” Leonard said, rising from the couch and starting to walk towards what he presumed was the bedroom. As he passed Stonn his arm was grabbed and he was pulled flush to his mate’s body. Stonn captured Len’s mouth in a possessive, but surprisingly gentle kiss.

When Stonn pulled away from the kiss, he said, “Leonard, you do not need to fear me. I will never willingly bring harm to you or our daughter.”

“You are not what I expected, Stonn.”

“Nor are you, Ashaya,” Stonn replied, releasing Leonard from his grip.

“I thought we decided no pet names?”

“You call me hobgoblin; is that not a pet name?” Stonn asked, with a raised eyebrow.

Leonard didn’t respond; he didn’t know how to respond to Stonn’s question. Before things become too awkward between them, Stonn raised his hand to Leonard’s face, “I must meditate. Please take a shower and rest, I shall join you shortly.”

Leonard wondered into the bedroom and was happy to find an actual water shower. He turned it on and allowed the cool water to not only wash away the dirt of the day, but the heat as well. Once he was done and dry he left the bathroom and found the bed; he pulled on a pair of boxers and a tee shirt and climbed into bed to rest. He must have been tired because he did not remember anything until he felt the bed dip and a strong arm pull him back against a very masculine body. He felt hot breath ghost over the back of his neck and a mouth descended in a gentle kiss. Another kiss was placed on his neck right below his hair line; Stonn continued to places kisses against his neck and shoulders, causing a shiver to travel down Len’s spine and end at his toes. Len did not know if Stonn intended to be sensual and seductive, but it didn’t matter because Len was quickly losing control.

He keened when Stonn gently bit his ear and began to suck on the lobe. He swallowed, audibly, when a hand found its way under his tee shirt and reached a nipple. The hand began to gently pinch, flick, and circle his nipple causing Len to arch his back trying to get more. Stonn switched between the right and left nipple, never allowing Len time to discern a pattern to his mate’s ministrations. The sensations that coursed through his body were electrifying. Stonn’s other hand slipped down and slid into Len’s boxers and he gripped his erection; the hand that wrapped around it was large and warm, it began to stroke him lightly. It was not enough pressure to make him come, but it was enough to drive him mad with lust. He began to thrust his hips forward, wanting more friction, but Stonn, the bastard, refused to give him any. He pleaded with his mate, “Stonn… please… I’m so close… please.”

Behind his mate, Stonn’s lips twitched and his tightened his grip, pinched and twisted a nipple, and bit down on the back of his mate’s neck. Leonard cried out in pleasure as he came with Stonn’s name on his lips and promptly passed out. The smell and feel of his mate in his arms; the knowledge that he had driven his grumpy, taciturn lover to unconsciousness drove Stonn to his own completion. He trembled as he climaxed without being touched. As he came back to himself, he thought about what they had just done; he had not had a lover like Leonard in many years. He thought that after the loss of Spock he would ever find another he could call his own or have as deep a connection as he felt towards Leonard.

Stonn slipped from the bed and retrieved a cloth to clean them both up with, once done he returned to the bed and slid back in behind his mate. He wrapped his arms around him and closed his eyes as he drifted off into slumber, he contented himself with Leonard’s steady breathing.

******

Stonn awoke to the feather light kisses of his mate. He slowly opened his eyes to find the blue ones of Leonard staring back at him.

“Good morning, sleepy head,” Leonard said.

“We did not eat last night; you must be hungry.”

Leonard huffed out a laugh as he said, “yeah, I am.”

“I shall see what has been stocked in the kitchen for us to consume, Ashaya.”

“All right; I’ll take a quick rinse off and meet you out there… we should probably talk about what happened last night and what we are going to do.”

“Of course; however, I would prefer that you do not shower quite yet.”

“And why is that?”

Stonn rolled Leonard onto his back and draped his body over his mates, growling at him, “because I wish to explore your body in more detail after we have consumed nutrition. I… might wish to see you wet again.”

“Y…you want to have shower sex?”

“Yes,” Stonn said, lowering his mouth over Leonard’s and kissing him until he was breathless.

“Okay… um… let me put some clothes on, at least,” Len said, once Stonn had released him from the kiss.

“If you must,” Stonn called as he left the room.

Leonard’s mouth dropped open as Stonn left the room. He had always thought of Vulcans as cold, heartless, computers that wouldn’t know passion if it hit them over the head. Last night, though, Stonn had him so turned on that when he came he passed out; he had never done that before in his life. He knew they had a great deal to discuss, like were they going to stay on Enterprise or would they settle on New Vulcan? What did Stonn expect from him and what did he expect from Stonn? Leonard knew he wouldn’t make a great stay-at-home w—husband or parent. He honestly didn’t think that Stonn could handle being with T’Mir all the time either. If they stayed on New Vulcan, what would Leonard do? Did the colony need human doctors? If they went back to Earth, what the hell would Stonn do? Len knew that he could become an instructor at the Academy, but Stonn wouldn’t be able to do that. He didn’t want to leave the ship, but he also didn’t see how they could stay and not kill each other. He was drawn from his depressing thoughts when a large hand cupped his cheek and forced him to stare into the concerned face of his mate.

“You are fretting too much, Ashaya.”

“Sorry.”

“There is no need to apologize, Leonard. You are correct that we have much to discuss. Please come eat a meal with me.”

Leonard smiled at him, “yeah.”

Once they were finished eating, Stonn pulled Leonard onto the couch and said, “I do not believe that New Vulcan would be the most appropriate place to raise T’Mir. She would be ostracized for her mixed heritage and you would be treated poorly for being a human.”

“But Amanda is human and she lives among Vulcans?”

“True; however, many have called her a disadvantage to both her son and her husband. Of course, they no longer say it in hearing distance of either Spock or Ambassador Sarek.”

“I thought Vulcans were all about infinite diversity in infinite combinations?”

“Perhaps when we no longer feel that we are better than others, we shall truly believe that.”

“What do you expect of me, Stonn?”

“Nothing that you are not willing and able to give to me, Ashaya.”

“I can’t be a stay-at-home caregiver for T’Mir.”

“It would be illogical to assume you could. I only wish to please and honor you, Ashaya.”

Leonard swallowed the lump in his throat before he spoke, “uh… isn’t that illogical?”

“Why would pleasing one’s mate be illogical? It would be illogical to ignore your needs and desires.”

“All… all right. So, where do you want to live?”

“I believe that Captain Kirk would be most distressed if you were to leave the ship. Enterprise is the most logical location for us to reside. It is customary for Vulcan couples to reside together for one year after marriage… I find that even if it were not custom, I would not wish to be parted from you, Ashaya.”

“Um… okay… but what will you do on the ship… I don’t want you to regret staying on it and then resenting me for it.”

“I was security while on Betazed and I could offer my assistance to Captain Kirk in similar capacity.”

“You’re not Starfleet and I don’t know if Jim can authorize such a thing.”

“Perhaps not; however, as I am Vulcan and a member of Betazed, by marriage, I could act as a diplomat when necessary.”

“I don’t know many security officers who are diplomatic.”

“I am accomplished in many areas, Leonard,” Stonn said as he ran his fingers down Len’s arm.

“Yea… yeah… you are,” Len said, shivering. “Stonn we need to finish our talk… even if I want to do other things, but this is important… oh… stop trying to… why does it feel like… distract me you, hobgoblin,” Len huffed out.

“Forgive me, Ashaya, but you are quite irresistible.”

“Um… ah… what about T’Mir… do I need to adopt her or something? I don’t want someone taking her away from me if something happens to you.”

“I have already stated the paperwork here on New Vulcan for a formal adoption. I do not anticipate any issues arising from another to try and place a claim against the adoption. I have also requested one for Betazed, as well, and that should not be an issue.”

“What about your family, Stonn? I… you didn’t introduce me to anyone that was related to you… did they…” Len said, trailing off.

“They escaped the destruction of Vulcan; however, I am… grohket… or a grohkeh, to them. They disowned me many years ago.”

“I don’t know what those words mean, but I guess they aren’t nice.”

“No; I am perverted or a pervert.”

“Because of Spock?”

“Yes, it is not logical to wish to mate with another male as no child could come of the union.”

“Why those… bastards,” Len cursed.

“I have spent many years in exile and without my family, I do not regret my actions.”

“Good,” Len said, scooting closer to Stonn and cuddling up next to him. “Is this okay?”

“Most acceptable,” Stonn replied, and warped his arm around his mate drawing him closer.

“Shit.”

“Ashaya?”

“In all the drama and concern for T’Mir and our bond, I kind of forgot to contact my kid and my parents.”

“You have another child?”

“Yeah, from my first marriage. Her name is Joanna and she lives with my ex-wife and her new husband. Maybe she will forgive me when she learns she has a sister.”

“And your parents?”

“My mother is going to kill me when she finds out I didn’t tell her sooner. My dad probably just… I really don’t know what he will do.”

“We shall contact them as soon as we return to the ship.”

“Good idea. Did Sarek arrange this place because you were disowned because of his son?”

“No; however, I do believe that he is aware of our previous relationship. Doctor Grayson is the one who I believe helped to arrange this location.”

“I… I think I’m falling for you Stonn,” Len said.

“That would be most unwise,” Stonn said.

“No, you, literal hobgoblin, I meant, I’m falling in love with you.”

“I see. I cherish thee, as well, Ashaya.”

Chapter Text

Jim walked into sickbay with a spring in his step. He was relaxed and happy for the first time in years and it was all made even better by being able to pick on Bones for his impromptu honeymoon. He found the irascible doctor in his office scowling over a pile of PADDs that were on his desk.

“Problem Bones?” Jim asked.

“Problem… problem… I go away for one day… one day… and my sick bay goes to hell. Why my staff thinks I’m going to fill out all their paper work is beyond me.”

“Maybe that think that since you’re getting some now you’ll be nicer to them?” Jim offered, with a smile on his face.

Bones turned his scowl on his friend and grabbed the hypo that was sitting on his desk; brandishing it as he stood and advanced on his Captain and friend, “isn’t it time for your vaccinations, Jim?”

Jim backed up and raised his hands in surrender, “no… no… you just gave them to me a week ago. I’ll behave.”

Bones smirked, “you better. Now, what did you want?”

Jim pointed to the chair that Bones kept in his office for private patient consultations, when Bones nodded, Jim took a seat. “Sorry I couldn’t make your bonding ceremony, but I got called into a meeting with the Admiralty.”

“Which one?”

“All of them, including Archer.”

“What the hell for?”

“You.”

“Me… fuck… Jim, I’m sorry… what was decided? Am I going back to Earth?”

“No… Archer came to our rescue and convinced the others that we should be given some leeway because of saving the planet so many times. I also made the argument that by not having families on the ship we could lose a lot of good people and that it wasn’t any safer on a planet, not after Nero and Khan,” Jim said, with a sigh.

“Okay, but you seem skeptical.”

“I am… concerned that if anything goes wrong and T’Mir is hurt or gets into anything she shouldn’t… we’ll have the Admiralty all over us. We need a plan to keep her occupied and with an adult at all times.”

“Yeah… Stonn and I kind of talked about some of that already, but I can’t ask him to be a stay at home dad either, he needs some form of stimulation.”

Jim snickered, “I think he’ll get plenty of stimulation from you Bones.”

“Vaccines, Jim,” Bones said, narrowing his eyes at the captain.

“Sorry, but you walked right into that one. All right, what is he qualified to do?”

“Security… he was part of the security forces while he worked at the Vulcan embassy on Betazed. By the way T’Mir is a quarter Betazed.”

“That’s why she emotes so much… huh… all right maybe I could use him for security training… our people are good, but I bet he could make them better.”

“Jim… how… do you know that T’Mir emotes?”

“What… can’t you feel her when she’s around?”

“No, only if I’m holding her or I’m near. You have barely spent any time with her.”

Jim gave him a wry smile, but replied, “I think that we need to talk. Um… remember how I told you about the whole Sentinel and Guide thing, but we got interrupted and never got back to it?”

“Yeah,” Bones said, warily.

“Well, it turned out that it’s true and I happened to be one of the rare ones that has empathic abilities. I can pick up on T’Mir just walking by your quarters and not entering them.”

“How the hell did you avoid detection?” Bones said, angrily.

“I’m good at hiding it. I learned how to protect myself against my step-dad and on Tarsus IV,” Jim said, shrugging.

“Jim…”

“Bones, you know that you can’t put any of this in my records.”

“Jim…”

Jim sighed, “Bones, if this gets out, you know what will happen, I’ll lose my ship and end up a science experiment and that will not make Spock very happy.”

“Okay… I get it, but you can’t keep hiding things from me, Jim.”

“I know Bones. You know all my allergies?”

“Yeah…”

“Well at least now we know the cause.”

“We do, do we?”

“Yeah, it turns out that Sentinels have a sensitivity to things and it comes out as allergies. Cool, right?”

“No, not cool. Well at least all of your allergies are already on file and I don’t have to lie about that.”

“So, tell me about your honeymoon,” Jim said, changing the subject.

Jim was up and out the doors of sick bay while Bones called after him, “just you wait Jim… I’ll get you.”

Jim laughed his way to the bridge; it was fun to rile Bones up, even if he would pay for it later.

******

Jim was in his ready room, reviewing reports that Rand had handed him earlier in his shift. It was slow, so he had handed the bridge off to Spock so that he could get his paper work done early. He had a date with Spock that evening and he didn’t want to have paper work stand in his way of beating him mate at chess. He had just signed off on another report when his comm activated, “Kirk, here.”

“Captain, we are reviving orders to proceed to Babel at best possible speed… there seems to be some sort of disaster occurring… Starfleet is unsure as to the nature of the disaster and are dispatching us as well as two other ships, but we are the closest and fastest, sir,” Uhura said.

“Understood, Lieutenant, on my way. Kirk, out.” Jim was on the bridge a moment latter and hovering over Uhura’s station reading the communique from HQ. Without turning to face Chekov he started to issue orders, “Ensign plot a course for Babel, fastest course you can. Sulu… once plotted… lay in the course… best possible speed.” Jim moved from Uhura’s location and contacted engineering from his chair, “Scotty, we’re going to be pushing the engines, I need all the speed you can give me, Kirk out. Spock, can you get any readings yet?”

“No, Captain. We will need to be closer.”

“Understood. Kirk to sickbay,” Jim waited for Bones to reply.

“McCoy, here.”

“Bones, we have a distress call coming from Babel… unknown situation… I need you and your team ready for anything… also, I’m sending Rand to take care of T’Mir… I think it might be a good idea to have another Vulcan on the away mission.”

“Isn’t there anyone else, Jim? Stonn really doesn’t like her.”

“I know, but she’s all I got; everyone else will be busy. Inform your… mate and I’ll get Rand there shortly. Kirk, out.”

“Understood,” Bones said, with a sigh.

******

Jim was getting a headache; it had been almost six hours since they had received orders to travel to Babel on a distress call and the crew’s emotions were bombarding Jim. He was trying to block them out, but he would need to meditate to gain better control of his empathy and right now he didn’t have time. Knowing he needed to gain control of himself he asked, “time to Babel?”

“We have another hour, sir,” Sulu said.

“Spock have you picked up anything on your scanners?”

“No, sir.”

“Uhura, anything?”

“I’m trying to raise them now, but so far I’m not getting anything but the automated signal, sir.”

“Dammit,” Jim cursed, “keep trying. I’m going to go and check on medical, the transporters, and engineering. Commander, you have the bridge.”

“Captain,” Spock began.

Jim sighed, “I know, Spock, but I can’t sit here any longer without jumping out of my skin. I need to be doing something, I’ll be back before we reach Babel.”

“Of course, Captain.”

Jim smiled at his mate and entered the turbo lift. Jim set his destination for main engineering, he figured he would start there and work his way forward. Scotty probably wouldn’t like his nosing around his babies, but Jim needed to be doing something, dammit; sometimes he hated being captain. He entered engineering and heard the dulcet tones of Scotty berating his staff.

“No… no… that is not what I said,” Scotty shouted.

“Scotty!”

“Captain!” Scotty shouted back, as he jumped.

“Sorry to startle you. How are the engines?”

“Fine, sir. She’ll make it to Babel without a problem.”

“Good… good… carry on then,” Jim said, turning and almost making it out of engineering, when Scotty called back to him, “you could have just commed me, sir.”

“I know, but I needed off the bridge for a bit… oh, and Scotty… be prepared for anything… we can’t raise Babel and Spock can’t get any readings on the area. We’re going in blind.”

“Aye, sir.”

Jim left engineering and headed towards the transporter room. He was grateful to see that his transporter chief was manning the station. “Chief,” Jim said.

“Captain, orders?”

“We’re going in blind, Chief. We’ll probably assemble an away team and I want you to keep a lock on them at all times.”

“Understood, Sir.”

Jim left the transporter room and headed towards sickbay. He was already feeling better and his head was pounding less, but it might not hurt to get a mild pain killer, too. He entered sickbay to find Bones berating his staff, again. After this was over, Jim was scheduling a senior staff meeting to discuss the possible transfer of personnel; it seemed that lately he was walking into locations where his heads were reprimanding their staff and Jim knew that was not conducive to proper ship operations.

“Bones!”

“Captain.”

“You have your people ready?”

“Yeah, I’ve got people to head down to the surface to offer assistance, if necessary.”

“Good. I need to get back to the bridge, but could I get something for my head?”

“Headache?”

“Yeah,” Jim stated, he looked around to make sure that no one was listening in, before he continued, “to many emotions and I’m not able to block them all right now.”

“All right,” Bones said, as he pushed the hypo into Jim’s neck.

Jim grimaced, “thanks Bones.”

“Anytime Jim.”

Jim returned to the bridge and asked, “Spock anything?”

“No, Sir.”

“All right, how long until we reach Babel?”

“Another ten minutes, Captain,” Sulu said.

“Okay,” Jim said, he took his chair back from his mate and pressed the ship wide communications button, “this is the Captain, we are entering Babel space in less than ten minutes. We are currently unaware as to the nature of the situation on the planet; we have not been able to communicate with them or get any sensor readings on the space around the planet. We could be entering a hostile situation, be prepared and I want all non-essential personnel in designated shelter areas. Have phases at ready. Kirk, out. Time?”

“Five minutes, sir,” Chekov said.

“Weapons ready and I want photon torpedoes on standby.”

“Aye, Sir.”

As the ship exited warp, Jim said, “on screen, Lieutenant.”

“Aye, Sir, on screen.”

“Spock?”

“Nothing, Captain.”

“Lieutenant hail the planet.”

“No answer, sir. I’ll keep trying.”

Jim got out of his chair and went to Spock’s station, “ships?”

“Nothing, Jim.”

“Life signs?”

“Jim, there is nothing but vegetation and animal life on the planet. I am not reading any other life signs on the planet.”

“That’s not possible… there are what… over a million humanoid life forms on the planet.”

“Yes, Captain; however, I currently am unable to locate anyone. I am picking up some rather strange energy readings in the space surround the planet, but I am uncertain as to what they are. I will need more time to analyze them.”

“Perhaps the people shielded themselves?”

“Possible, although, I am not aware of the planet having that technology.”

“All right, Uhura, contact Starfleet and apprise them of the situation. Send all data that we have accumulated to them and inform them that we will be assembling a landing party to investigate. Spock, you’re with me. Sulu, you have the bridge.”

“Aye, Captain,” Sulu said.

******

Jim, Spock, Bones, and Stonn, with nearly a dozen security officers and medical personnel beamed down to the planet’s surface. Once on the surface, Jim immediately started to listen for any signs of life, beyond what the scanners could detect. He didn’t hear anything near the beam down site, “Commander, Bones, and Stonn, you’re with me, the rest of you form groups of four and spread out… you find anything, report it immediately, understood.”

“Yes, Captain,” everyone chorused.

“Come on, this way,” Jim said, pointing in the direction that should house the main communications equipment for the planet. They walked for about ten minutes when they came across a body—or what they thought was a body.

“Bones… Spock,” Jim said, as he and Stonn stood guard for their mates.

Bones knelt next to the body and ran his tricorder over it, “it’s like it was mummified. I’ve never seen anything like it, Jim.”

“Spock?” Jim asked.

“I agree with Doctor McCoy… it is most fascinating and yet disturbing.”

“All right, let’s keep going; we’ll come back and collect it on our way back to the ship.”

The started to walk again, again Jim started to extend his hearing, listening for any sound of life. He started to drift and was grateful when Spock touched his hand.

“Thanks,” Jim said, “I think I hear something over in that direction,” he pointed towards a large building off to the left of them. They walked towards the building and carefully opened the door, with weapons drawn, they entered the facility and the lights came on, automatically, revealing a large foyer. Jim listened again and pointing towards the stairs, they began to ascend them.

Spock began to scan for any life forms, but he was still not finding any, other than the four of them. He was stopped when Jim stiffened next to him; his mate cocked his head to the side and Spock knew he had found something.

“In there,” Jim said, pointing to a door.

They cautiously approached the door; Spock and Stonn stood in front of their mates. Stonn motioned for McCoy to open the door and Jim stepped to the side with his phaser leveled and ready to fire. The door slid open and they found twelve children and one adult inside the room, all huddled in a corner. All humans, but one small Andorian girl. Jim stepped in front and addressed them, “hey, it’s all right… we’re from the Enterprise, I’m Captain Kirk and this is my first officer, Spock… my chief medical officer, Doctor McCoy and his mate, Stonn. We came because of the distress call.”

“Oh, thank heavens,” the woman said, Jim didn’t think she was over twenty.

“What’s your name?” Jim asked.

“Mar… Maryann Barton… I was visiting my father… he was a member of the Federation’s diplomatic envoy…” she said, in a rush.

“Maryann, why don’t you come out and we’ll get you all up to the ship,” Jim said.

“Okay… um… come on, kids,” Maryann said.

Jim was happy to see that the kids all followed Maryann as they lead them out of the building; as they exited the building, Jim pulled his communicator out and hailed the ship, “Kirk to Enterprise.”

“Enterprise, here,” Uhura’s voice came over his communicator.

“Lieutenant, we have survivors to beam up; have the transporter room lock on to my communicator and beam them up to the ship.”

“Understood, sir. Captain, the other two ships have arrived and are awaiting orders… apparently, the admiralty has giving you command of this entire mission.”

“Ah, hell,” Jim swore, “all right, Spock and I will be coming back with the survivors. I’ll signal when we’re ready for transport.”

“Understood, sir.”

“Bones, why don’t you and Stonn stay down here and keep looking… I have to go and be a leader… I’ll send down some more security teams to help with the search,” Jim said, with a sigh.

“You wanted to be a captain, Jim,” Bones retorted back.

“Yeah, yeah… off with you.” Jim opened his communicator and requested beam out.

Chapter Text

Jim was tired; it had been a long few days. They had finally found all the remaining survivors of Babel; two-thousand fifty. Jim was in the process of compiling coherent statements from the survivors. Everyone agreed that the enemy had attacked without warning. They agreed that there had been a lot of ships; small one-man fighters that attacked them. He had just opened another statement when he felt a hand on his shoulder, “come to be, Jim.”

“I wish I could, Spock, but I have all these statements to read.”

“They will still be there in the morning, Jim. You need sleep and I need my mate,” Spock said, seriously.

“All right, babe.”

Jim crawled into bed with Spock and drifted off to sleep faster than he expected.

Spock watched his mate sleep; he was concerned that Jim was taking too much responsibility on himself. Spock carefully extracted himself from the bed and went to the desk. He found his own PADD and returned to bed. Sitting in bed with his mate cuddled near him, Spock began to read over the data that had been pouring in. The initial readings that he had discovered in the space around Babel still confounded him. He could not find anything in the database that was similar; deciding that he needed a second opinion, he opened a secure data transmission to New Vulcan and sent his findings with a communique to Ambassador Spock. He knew it was illogical to hope that the Ambassador had perhaps seen something similar during his time in Starfleet, but Spock was at a loss to figure it out himself.

Spock’s next order of business was Doctor McCoy’s medical report on the corpse that had been recovered; it was blunt in its details. The corpse had suffered a complete shutdown of all organs; it appeared that all the victims had died of old age, but at an accelerated rate. All the victims also had a wound or mark on their chests that had not been inflicted by any type of weapon that they could determine. No energy signatures were found on any of the corpse. It was all a very perplexing conundrum. He was interrupted in his thoughts when his PADD beeped; he had a new message.

He opened the message and found that to his surprise, Ambassador Spock had responded:

Spock,

My knowledge is limited in this. Look for theoretical work.

Ambassador

That was most unhelpful, Spock thought. Deciding he should sleep, he placed his PADD down and slid down to wrap his arms around Jim. Relaxing he allowed his mind to clear and he sleep to claim him.

******

Jim awoke the next morning to strong arms around him and a very aroused Vulcan behind him. He and Spock had been sharing a bed for only a short time and this was the first time that they had awoken like this. One of the arms that had been around him slowly slipped down towards his sleep pants and slipped inside of them.

“Um… Spock?”

“Yes, Jim?”

“What are you doing?”

“That would seem obvious, Jim,” Spock said, as he wrapped his hand around Jim’s morning erection.

Jim moaned in pleasure as Spock began to stroke him. Jim wanted to reciprocate, but Spock’s arms were preventing him.

“Can I touch you?” Jim asked.

“Yes, ashal-veh.”

Jim was finally able to turn around and face Spock. He slipped his hand into Spock’s sleeping robe and gripped his mate erection. Jim leaned in and started to kiss Spock; Spock opened his mouth and allowed Jim’s tongue in, they battled for and time, but Jim won and had Spock, against his will, moaning. They came together, breaking the kiss and panting into each other’s shoulders.

When he had recovered, Jim asked, “I didn’t think Vulcans got morning wood?”

“We do not; however, I believe I was experiencing arousing images.”

“You were having a sex dream?”

“No, I believe you were having a ‘sex dream’.”

“Well, damn, I don’t remember it, but, hey, what a way to wake up.”

“Yes, most agreeable.”

******

Jim was in his ready room reading over more reports, when Uhura commed him, “Captain, you have a priority message coming in from Starfleet.”

“Understood, Lieutenant, route it through to my ready room.”

“Yes, sir.”

Jim heard the beep of an incoming message a moment later; pressing the accept button he was not surprised to find the admirals staring back at him.

“Sirs, what can I do for you today?”

“We’ll cut to the chase, Captain, we have a serious problem. Babel, as you know, it a neutral planet, we need to know what the hell happened there.”

Jim sighed, “what we know is this; Babel was attacked by an unknown enemy. They came in swiftly and deadly; they have some type of one man fighter that from eyewitness accounts were using some type of beaming technology to collect people. Those that survived hid in shielded areas; those that didn’t survive died of what Doctor McCoy called old age. Eyewitnesses claim to have seem some of these aliens on the ground; I have a few descriptions, but I’m not sure that it helps us. They claim that they were tall, around six-in-half to seven feet, muscular with green-blue-grayish skin and ugly.”

“Did you find all the bodies?”

“No, sirs, we have a lot of missing people. I can only presume that they were transported aboard a ship in space.”

“What about their warp signature?”

“There wasn’t one. Spock found an energy signal, but it was highly unusual and he has yet to identify it. I’m sorry, sirs, but it looks like the Federation and Starfleet have a new enemy. One we have yet to truly meet.”

“Damn, does Commander Spock have any idea as to what the energy reading might be?” Pike asked.

“He said something this morning about looking at theoretical research, but he was reluctant to commit to anything yet, Sir.”

“All right, Jim. I’ll be coming out to take over for you, so that the Enterprise can begin a search for that energy reading or some other clue. We can’t have our flag ship stuck investigating, when you could be looking for whoever did this.”

“Understood, sir, and it will be good to see you again.”

“I’ll be there in about four days, Jim, Pike, out.”

Jim plopped down in his chair; he would be happy to hand this whole mess off to someone else, but for now he had work to do. Jim opened his message program and sent a memo to all senior staff to meet the following morning, at 0800.

Chapter Text

It had been two months since the attack on Babel and they had yet to have another attack. Pike had taken over the investigation, but had, in the end, returned to Earth without any conclusive information. Life on Enterprise had taken on a new direction; all the rescued survivors were returned to the planet, except two; Maryann Barton and the Andorian child. They had stayed on the ship for transport. The little girl was returned to her clan on Andor; Maryann stayed because she was the only one the little girl would allow near her. After they had dropped the girl off, Maryann was supposed to be returned to a Federation planet for transport back to Earth; however, during the trip she had become close to T’Mir. Jim saw an opportunity to solve one of his problems on the ship; a nanny for T’Mir.

Jim felt that things were going good for him; he and Spock had been exploring their relationship and had even practiced his Sentinel abilities. They had had several first contact missions that went all right, with no one dying or too many injuries. The ship was headed to another newly discovered planet that might be colonizable. It was another planet that Jim could hone his Sentinel skills on. Jim was having a good day; plus, that evening he had a date with Spock to play chess, he couldn’t wait to beat his mate, again.

******

Len was in his office reviewing paperwork; he hated this part of the job. He didn’t understand how a paperless society would need a form submitted in triplicate; once should be enough, but, no, he had to submit all forms three times and they had to be sent individually. He would bring the issue up at the next staff meeting, but he already knew the answer; it’s the rules, Jim would say. Since when had Jim ever followed the rules. Len hit send on his final form and sighed in relief; he had a date with Stonn that evening and he didn’t want anything to interrupt it.

It was strange that he was having a date with his husband—bond mate—-whatever, but Stonn had insisted after they had returned from New Vulcan that they should enter a courtship arrangement. Len had said that was stupid, since they had already had sex, but Stonn had been stubborn, so Len relented. So, for the last two months, he and Stonn had a weekly date night, where Maryann would watch T’Mir for the evening and he and Stonn would engage in some form of ritualistic human courtship practices, Stonn’s words, not Len’s. Len would never admit to anyone’s face, but he liked his date nights with his mate.

****

Jim was humming to himself as he entered his and Spock’s quarters; he had just enough time to shower and change before Spock arrived and they began their date. Jim had to admit that it was kind of hard to date on the ship with only so many places and things you could do, but he enjoyed every one of them. He had his shirt up over his head when he felt strong arms wrap him in a tight embrace.

“That better be you, Spock,” he said.

“Affirmative.”

Jim was surprised that he had missed his Guide’s scent in the room; he must have been concentrating on their date, too hard.

“I was just going to take a shower, want to join me?”

“I must decline as my mother wishes to communicate with me.”

“Oh, all right, I shouldn’t be too long.”

Jim left to shower and Spock sat down at the desk in their quarters. He opened a channel to New Vulcan and waited for his mother.

“Spock!” Amanda exclaimed.

“Mother,” he replied, warmly.

“I am so happy you called; I was afraid I might miss your call as we are leaving for Earth tomorrow. How are you and Jim?”

“We are acceptable, Mother.”

“Good… things are going all right?”

“Yes, Mother. How are you and Father?”

“We are both healthy and acceptable. I know you do not like the word fine.”

“It has….”

“Yes, I know. Where’s Jim?”

“He is… preparing for our date.”

“You’re dating?”

“It is a way for us to spend time together, without work and other obligations obstructing us.”

“That is a wonderful thing, Spock. I had worried about you in a relationship with a human.”

“Mother?” Spock said, feeling slightly stung at her words.

“Oh, Spock… don’t get me wrong… I love you and will always be proud of you, but you have always tried to be very Vulcan and that can be difficult for many humans.”

“I see… Mother… you must know that Jim is T’hy’la and I… wish to be better than I once was.”

“Spock?”

“I have never been good at expressing myself… I find I wish to do better and be more….”

“Spock, honey, I love you. I think that you have allowed your desire to be accepted as a Vulcan repress your human side. You are part human and… I should have perhaps been more insistent that you experience more of your human culture, but I was worried you would not be able to control your Vulcan side. I am sorry.”

“Mother, do not be… I am grateful for the life that you and Father gave me. It has prepared me for my future and my life on the ship. And I… love you, as well, Mother.”

Amanda just smiled at her son, she knew what it had taken him to say those words to her and she was ecstatic to hear them; he hadn’t said them to her, since he was a small child. She heard a noise and knew it must be Sarek.

“Your father has returned.”

“I shall end our communication then Mother.”

“Spock wait….”

“Yes?”

“There is something that you need to know, but it is difficult.”

“Mother, are you unwell?” Spock said, concern leaking through his voice.

“No, Spock. It… your father and I are having… you will have a brother or sister in approximately seven months.”

“You are…” he didn’t know how to ask; his mother was not a young woman, nor was she old; however, she was human and the stress of pregnancy and birth of a Vulcan child could easily kill her.

“No, I’m not pregnant, Spock.”

“I… do not understand?”

“The Vulcan High Council decreed that all Vulcans of childbearing age procreate to help reestablish the Vulcan population.”

Spock took his mother’s words in and could only come to one conclusion; his father had mated with another Vulcan. He was—angry on his mother’s behalf. He could not form a thought and he was quiet; he mother must have determined his thought process, because when his mother spoke again it was with compassion.

“Spock, we used a surrogate. The child shall be a full sibling to you.”

“Oh,” he said.

“I think you broke him, Amanda,” Jim said, from behind Spock.

“I think perhaps you are right,” she chuckled, “how are you, Jim?”

“I’m good… so what’s this I hear about kids?”

“Yes, it will affect you and Spock as well.”

“I’m won’t let him,” Jim started, he felt a wave of possessiveness wash over him and he tamped it down.

“I understand. You have two options; one is to have Spock donate for insemination and the child will be raise by the mother’s clan…”

“No,” Jim snapped, before Amanda could say more. “Option two?” he asked.

“Option two, is to use a donated egg from a Vulcan female and a different Vulcan for surrogacy. The child then would be handed over, after its birth, to Spock.”

“That I don’t find overly offensive,” Jim said.

“Jim,” Spock started, but was interrupted by his mate.

“Spock, if we have to do this, and I have a feeling that we will, I am not letting any kid of yours raise by someone else, understood.”

“Yes, Se… Jim… I agree that the second option is the least repugnant of the two.”

“I wouldn’t worry about it too much, boys. I think that they will let you wait to do this until you are next in range of New Vulcan.”

“Good,” Jim said.

“I should go; I still have to pack for our trip.”

“Of course, Mother… goodbye,” Spock said, his customary farewell forgotten in his shock.

“Bye, Amanda,” Jim echoed.

“Bye, boys,” Amanda said, as the screen went blank.

“Are you all right, Spock?” Jim asked.

“I am… uncertain.”

“I know that this is a lot to take in,” Jim said, as he turned Spock’s chair around and straddled his lap, “but it could be a good thing. Didn’t you always want a sibling?”

“I have a brother… I do not know if I would wish for another.”

“You have a brother? Why haven’t you ever talked about him?”

“He is from my Father’s first marriage… Sybok is… unlike other Vulcans.”

“I take it he is the black sheep of the family?”

“That would be accurate. Jim, I….”

“Spock, I get it… I understand that you might not want a child from some anonymous woman, but I don’t think it would be a good idea to let someone else raise the kid… what if he or she turns out to be a Guide or Sentinel? Didn’t the others say it was genetic?”

“I… did not think of that; however, the child would be more Vulcan than human.”

“Yes, but it could still happen and that could complicate things for us. Besides, I think it would be nice to have a kid with your ears,” Jim teased.

“You do not mind?”

“Of course, I mind, but I also understand the logic behind the situation and this might be the best way for us to have a kid, since two men can’t have a child together.”

“Very well, I shall send a message to T’Pau and have her investigate an appropriate donner and surrogate.”

“Good, now about our chess game…” Jim trailed off as Spock kissed him.

******

Len walked into the quarters he shared with Stonn and rolled his eyes at the single red rose sitting on their small eating table in the room. Len saw that it was sitting on top of a note, on actual paper. Moving the rose from the note, he read:

Ashaya,

Please accept this token of my affection. Please meet me in the mess hall.

Stonn

Len sighed, whoever was giving Stonn dating advise needed to realize he was a man and flowers weren’t his thing. He had to admit that it was sweet, though. He quickly changed out of his uniform and into jeans and a long sleeve shirt; in the past he would not have worn long sleeves, but since Stonn and T’Mir, he had become accustom to higher temperatures in their quarters and the rest of the ship felt cold to him. He grabbed the flower and the note and headed to the mess hall.

He entered the mess hall and did not immediately spot his mate, but he did see that on the table they usually frequented, was a red camellia and another note. Picking the note up, he read:

Ashaya,

Please meet me on the observation deck.

Stonn

“What the hell is this, a damn scavenger hunt? Damn hobgoblin,” he mumbled to himself as he picked up the camellia and left the mess hall. He was not surprised to find another note on the observation deck and a calla lily:

Ashaya,

Forgive me; please meet me in your office.

Stonn

Len just rolled his eyes and grabbed his flower and note. He entered sickbay and waved to Chapel as he entered his office; again, he found another note and this time he found a cactus.

“Should have guessed,” he mumbled to himself. He picked up the note and read it:

Ashaya,

I was unable to stay in your office; however, if you will meet me in our quarters, I shall most assuredly be there.

Stonn

“He better be or I’ll wring his Vulcan neck,” Len grumbled, as he gathered his stuff and left sickbay.

He once again found himself back where he started and again there was a note and a flower. He put down all his loot and pick-up the note, he read it:

Ashaya,

Please forgive this subterfuge; however, I found myself unable to communicate what I am experiencing; therefore, I have chosen to leave gifts to you and an explanation. Each item I left for you has a meaning:

A thornless red rose means that I fell in love with you at first sight.

A red camellia; you are a flame in my heart.

A calla lily; I find beauty in your mind and soul.

A cactus; I wish for our love to endure.

A purple hyacinth; forgive me.

Yours for eternity,

Stonn

Len blinked at the note trying to make sense of Stonn’s actions; it was sweet, almost romantic. He felt strong arms wrap around his chest and pull him back against the muscular Vulcan; a feather light kiss was bestowed on his neck.

“Stonn—I….”

“Please, Leonard, let me explain.”

Len just nodded.

“I must ask for your forgiveness; when I first awoke from my healing trance—I found you with T’Mir in one arm and a tricorder in the other… I… Vulcan males sometimes will initiate a mating bond with an exceptionally attractive female. It is extremely rare, but when I saw you caring for my daughter and your care of others… I was drawn to you. Do you remember when I touched your face?”

“Yeah, more like grabbed.”

“I was… compromised and found your beauty overwhelming. When I grabbed your face… I initiated the beginning of a mating bond… we are, as humans say, lucky, that I did not suffer pon farr symptoms.”

“Let me get this straight; you initiate a bond… it wasn’t spontaneous?”

“No, I was….”

“Overcome by my beauty. Yeah, I think I got that.” Len turned in Stonn’s arms and asked, “Stonn, I need to know; do you love me for me or did you think I would make a good mate and parent?”

“I cherish thee for your mind and soul. I cherish thee for your passion and compassion. I cherish thee for your fierce love and devotion to T’Mir. I cherish thee for not wishing to break our bond. I will cherish thee for the remainder of my life; even though, I may be forced to bond again someday, I shall never find another who inspires such passion and devotion in me. I cherish thee, Leonard.”

“You’re not acting very Vulcan, Stonn.”

“Leonard, I have told you before, Vulcans believe that to allow our emotions to rule us, is dangerous; however, that does not preclude us from having them or showing them. Do you forgive me for my actions, Leonard?”

Leonard knew that he should be upset and angry at Stonn, but he just couldn’t bring himself to be; instead of answering Stonn, he kissed him. The kiss lasted until both parties were breathless, as they separated, Len asked, “that answer your question?”

“Yes. Do you wish to partake in a meal, now?”

“No.”

“What do you wish, then?”

Len gave Stonn a devilish smile and grabbed him by the hand, pulling him towards their bedroom.

Chapter Text

Jim heard an annoying beeping sound; he reached out and slapped in the direction the noise was coming, but hit his Guide in the arm, instead.

“Jim, it is not the alarm. It is the bridge contacting us.”

“Damn it,” Jim grumbled, as he left the bed and found his desk, in the dark. “Computer, lights twenty percent,” he ordered. He pushed the button to accept his call, “Kirk, here.”

“Captain, you have a priority message from Starfleet command,” Uhura’s voice filtered into his quarters.

“Uhura… aren’t you supposed to be off shift?”

“I… couldn’t sleep sir.”

“So you decided to work?”

“Yes, sir… my… date stood me up.”

“Who the hell would stand you up?” Jim said, anger in his voice.

“He didn’t mean to, sir. A situation in engineering came up, we rescheduled for tomorrow.”

“Scotty. I’ll make sure that there won’t be a situation tomorrow, Lieutenant. Patch the call through to me quarters, please.”

“Of course, sir… and sir, thanks.”

“Your welcome, Uhura.”

Jim waited only a moment and his screen was filled with a woman. A woman he had not seen before; she had her mousy brown hair in a severe ponytail and was sitting too close to the screen.

“Captain Kirk?” the woman said, her accent reminded him of Carol.

“Yes, and you are?”

“Oh, yes… my name is Samantha Brooks with the Federation Child Protective Services, London branch.”

“What may I do for you, Miss Brooks?”

“I have some distressing news for you, Captain. Your wife was killed in a lab accident two days ago.”

Jim’s mouth dropped open and he felt a wave of anger pass through his bond with Spock. He turned to the woman, “Miss Brooks, I do not, nor have I ever had a wife. I believe you have the wrong Kirk.”

“You are Captain James T. Kirk, of the starship Enterprise?”

“Yes.”

“And you did know and have a relationship with a Carol Marcus?”

“Yes, but we were never married and it ended some time ago.”

“Forgive me Captain… I just assumed that you were Doctor Marcus’ husband.”

“Well I wasn’t. I have a Vulcan bond-mate and we have been bonded for several months.”

“I’m sorry for the confusion, Captain, but I do have other news for you.”

“Wait… did you say that Carol was killed?”

“Yes… I’m sorry. It was an accident… a weapon she was working on exploded and killed her instantly. It is quite sad, as she had just returned to work from medical leave.”

Jim felt sadness at Carol’s death; he hadn’t loved her, but he had cared for her.

“The other reason for my call, Captain Kirk, is that Doctor Marcus left behind a son, David, and she named you as his father.”

“What?”

“Doctor Marcus named you as the father and you appear on his birth certificate; however, if you wish you may ask for a paternity test. I’m sure if you authorize it, Starfleet could run the test for us and once it is confirmed we shall release him into your custody.”

“I have a son… why the hell didn’t she tell me she was pregnant….”

“I’m sorry Captain, I can’t answer that. Do you consent to have a paternity test run, sir?”

“Yes, of course. I’ll contact Admiral Christopher Pike and inform him.”

“Good, once we have the results, I will contact you.”

“Thank you, miss Brooks.”

Jim was stunned; he didn’t know what to think beyond he had a son.

Spock touched his shoulder, “Jim, you should perhaps contact Admiral Pike.”

“Um… yeah… I… you’re right, Spock,” Jim said. He contacted Uhura, “Lieutenant?”

“Yes, Captain?”

“I need a secure transmission to Admiral Pike.”

“Of course, sir.” It was silent for a time while Uhura contacted Starfleet Command. “I have Admiral Pike, Sir.”

“Thanks,” Jim said, just as Pike came on the screen.

“Kirk, what’s wrong?”

“Chris… I need your help.”

“This isn’t business, is it?”

“No, it’s personal. I… you remember Carol Marcus?”

“Yes, I heard that she was killed.”

“She left a son, Chris, and they think he’s mine.”

“Shit. What do you think, Jim?”

Jim closed his eyes and recalled their last night together; she was acting strange. They spent the night in his apartment; they had dinner and he wanted to watch some old movie, but she had wanted to spend the night in bed. The next morning, she was gone and had requested to be reassigned back to Earth.

“Jim?” Pike questioned.

“He’s mine. I think that he’s mine. I need you to have a paternity test run on him so that I can get custody of him. I don’t want him in the system, Chris.”

“All right, Jim. I’ll make it happen, but he will end up in someone’s care while you are in space.”

“No, I’ll bring him on board… I already have one kid here; another shouldn’t be a problem.”

“Jim….”

“Don’t. I’ll leave Starfleet if they don’t let me bring him on the ship, Chris.”

“Jim!”

“I’m sure that the Vulcan High Council would be willing to let me have a ship… they are just getting their fleet back together and could probably use our experience,” Jim said, pointing to himself and Spock. It might be an empty threat, but Jim would leave Starfleet and take his Guide with him, if he couldn’t have his son on the ship.

“Before you ask, Admiral, I will follow my mate,” Spock said.

“Got it,” Pike gave them a wry smile.

“Admiral, my parents will be on Earth in less than a day; they will take custody of David, until Jim and I arrive.”

“Understood, Commander. I assume you will contact them.”

“Yes, sir,” Spock said, and the screen went blank.

******

“Mother.”

“Spock,” Amanda smiled at him.

“Mother, I must ask you and Father for a favor.”

“Of course, Spock.”

Spock hesitated, he still felt illogically jealous over Jim’s relationship with Doctor Marcus.

“Spock?” Amanda asked.

“Forgive me, Mother; Jim received news that through a former relationship he has become a father. The woman in question was killed and Jim will be taking custody of the child; however, we will not be able to return to Earth for at least two weeks. I wish to ask that you and Father take temporary custody of the child; Jim has transmitted the authorization to both the Federation and Starfleet command.”

“Of course, Spock. What is the child’s name?”

“David Marcus. You may contact Admiral Pike regarding the transfer.”

“Spock, where is Jim?”

“He is… asleep.”

“Spock is everything all right between you and Jim?”

“Yes, Mother… I do not hold Jim at fault for this situation… it occurred prior to our relationship and I was, myself in a relationship with Nyota.”

“You still seem upset.”

“I am… confused, Mother. Doctor Marcus knew of her pregnancy prior to leaving Jim… she never informed him. She would, perhaps, never have informed him of the child’s existence. I am….”

“She hurt your mate, Spock. I understand that, Sybok hurt your Father and yes, he was hurt. Be there for Jim, Spock, that is all you can do for him.”

“Thank you, Mother.”

“I shall contact you once we have David in our custody.”

“Thank you, Amanda, I appreciate it,” Jim said, from behind Spock.

“You’re welcome, Jim. Good-bye,” Amanda said, as the screen went blank.

“You should be asleep, Jim.”

“Can’t sleep… take a walk with me?”

“Of course.”

Jim and Spock left their quarters and began walking the halls of the ship; nodding to the people they meet on their path to the observation deck. Jim watched the stars’ speed by thinking of the time he had lost with his family because of his father’s death and now he had a son that he didn’t know about. He figured that he and Spock would have a kid soon, but not this soon.

“Jim?”

“I’m fine Spock. I’m sorry about this… if I had known, I would have….”

“You would have what, Jim?”

“I’m glad I didn’t know… I would have probably tried to convince Carol to marry me and….”

“Jim, you have nothing to be sorry for; if it had been Nyota, I would have done the same. I cannot blame you for this situation, nor should you.”

“Thanks, Spock… I know this isn’t what we had planned, but I can’t let him be raised by others.”

“I understand, Jim. Perhaps we should postpone our plans for….”

“Yeah, I’m not sure if I’m ready for two in diapers,” Jim laughed, “damn, we have so much to do and only two weeks to get it done in.”

Spock pulled Jim into an awkward hug, “we shall seek help from the crew, Jim.”

“Yeah. We have to be on the bridge soon.”

“Affirmative.”

“Let’s get some breakfast before our shift.”

“Very well,” Spock said, as he released Jim.

******

Jim was on the bridge as the ship entered Earth orbit and docked at the space station. The crew were excited to be returning to Earth; they didn’t know that it might be for longer than a week of shore leave. Jim was in discussions with Starfleet Command regarding bring his son on board the ship; he was trying to negotiate for some of the crew to bring family members, as well. If he was successful, they would need to overhaul the ship’s living quarters and other areas for civilians. He hadn’t informed the crew, yet, for fear that if his plan fell through he would have to give bad news to them. The Admiralty was giving him pushback regarding bringing David on board; they did not take his threat to leave Starfleet seriously.

He and Spock spoke of their options prior to arriving at Earth. The Vulcan High Council expressed interest in having them crew one of the VSA’s ships; they even offered a position to Bones and Stonn. Jim was reluctant to bring the offer up to Bones, but he felt confident that the offer would be considered. Jim knew that if he wasn’t on the ship, Bones would not be allowed to keep T’Mir and Stonn with him and he would leave the Fleet.

“Captain, Admiral Pike wishes to speak to you,” Uhura’s voice broke through his contemplation.

“Thank you, Lieutenant,” Jim said, as he stood to receive Pike’s greeting. “Admiral, it’s good to see you.”

“Captain, welcome back to Earth. Jim, things have gotten… complicated, since we last spoke. I would like to meet with you and Commander Spock prior to our scheduled meeting. I know that you had plans, but I think this is necessary.”

“Understood, Admiral. We shall be there shortly… just need to make certain that our crew has all been granted shore leave.”

“Lieutenant Uhura should have received the authorizations when you docked.”

“Good; give us an hour and we should be good to meet.”

“Very well, Jim. Pike out.”

The screen went blank and Jim turned to Spock, “Commander, please organize the crew’s departure from the ship in an orderly fashion. Make them aware that they could be recalled at any moment, so keep their trips on to the planet. I’ll be in my ready room.”

“Yes, Captain.”

******

Jim and Spock entered Starfleet Command Headquarters and were greeted by Pike. They followed him towards his office and waited.

“Gentlemen, the Admiralty does not want to approve families aboard starships; however, they are concerned that if they say no, you two will leave Starfleet. Is that still your intention?”

“Yes, Admiral Pike,” Spock said.

“Then I am authorized to allow the families aboard Enterprise, on a trial basis. This could ground the ship while changes are made to it, Jim.”

“I understand, sir. I do have a design that could help move the modifications along,” Jim said.

“Let me look at them and I’ll pass on your recommendations. Now, Jim, go meet your son,” Pike said, smiling.

“Yes, sir.”  

******

Jim and Spock entered the Vulcan Embassy and found Sarek waiting for them.

“Father,” Spock said.

“Ambassador,” Jim greeted.

“Spock, James. Your mother has the child with her; if you will follow me,” Sarek said.

Sarek opened the door to the apartment and Jim and Spock heard a baby bawling.

“Oh, thank goodness you are here,” Amanda said, as she handed the baby off to Sarek; the baby instantly stopped crying. “He has only stopped when Sarek holds him,” Amanda told Jim and Spock.

Jim approached Sarek and the older Vulcan took great care in transferring the baby to Jim. After taking his son from Sarek, Jim was grateful he hadn’t resumed his crying; he looked at his son and saw familiar blue eyes and very blond hair and the waves of contentment that were coming from his son were startling. Jim let his shielded mind open just a crack and found what was causing the babies distress earlier. He sat on the couch and tried not to show how distressed he was over his discovery.

However, Spock felt it and took the space next to Jim, “what is the problem?”

Jim leaned into Spock and transferred the baby to his arms, shocking the Vulcan, “do you feel it?”

Spock held the boy and he too knew the problem; David was a Sentinel.

Chapter Text

“Rodney?” John called out, as he entered his Guide’s lab.

“Hey.”

“I thought you said only another hour, but it’s been close to four.”

“Sorry… sorry, but I needed to figure this out, John.”

“Rodney….”

“John,” Rodney said, turning to face his Sentinel, “this is important. If I’m right our new friends could be in trouble and not even know it.”

“Why?”

“I don’t want to speculate, John.”

John sighed, “all right, but I’m not going to let this go on forever.”

“I’ll be home in an hour, okay.”

“One hour or I will come and drag your ass back home,” John said, kissing his Guide and leaving him to his work.

******

Rodney sighed, John had left him almost thirty minutes before and he knew he needed to stop working soon, but it was important. He hasn’t told John what he suspected, because if he was right they might have to take drastic action. He just couldn’t figure out how this could have happened. He jumped at the sound of a voice behind him spoke, “it is our fault, Doctor McKay.”

Spinning around, he found a man dressed as an Ancient. “Who the hell are you?” he demanded.

“My name is not important; however, what I have to say is.”

“What do you have to say?”

“We have made a grave mistake; therefore, we must fix it.”

Rodney rolled his eyes, “cryptic, much?”

The man smiled, “I am only allowed to tell you certain things, Doctor McKay.”

“Fine. May I ask questions?”

“I may not answer.”

“You said it was your fault; did you mean it was the Ancients fault?”

The man tilted his head to one side, “yes.”

“The Wraith are in that other Universe, correct?”

“Yes.”

“How do I fix it?”

“You cannot.”

“How do you fix it?”

“You will not like the answer.”

“I don’t like any of this. How do you fix it?”

“I cannot tell you; however, I am, allowed to tell you that your people should prepare for a… change to come soon.”

“What the hell does that mean?”

“Gather those you hold dear, Doctor McKay when the time is near you shall know more,” the man said, just before he disappeared.

“Hey… damn Ancients… never give you useful information,” he grumbled.

******

Rodney slipped into bed next to John. John pulled him into his arms and held him close, “missed you,” he said, sleepily.

“Sorry, but I just had an interesting conversation with an Ancient.”

“Hmm, that’s goo… wait, what?”

“I was in my lab and an Ancient appeared. He said that it was their fault and that I couldn’t fix it, but to gather those I held dear to me. It was very unhelpful,” Rodney grumbled.

“Fuck… you know we have to report this?”

“Yeah, but not until I get some sleep,” Rodney said, yawning.

“Okay, goodnight.”

******

Jack entered the briefing room with his mug of coffee, “all right, what’s was so important that you had to get me up this damn early, McKay?”

“I had a conversation with an Ancient last night.”

“Who?” Daniel asked.

“He didn’t give me his name, but he did say that it was their fault and that I couldn’t fix it. He also told me to gather those I held dear; I have no idea what he meant.”

“What was their fault?”

“I… I think that our new friends have been invaded by the Wraith.”

“What?” Sam asked.

“I didn’t want to say anything until I had a better idea of what happened, but I think that something happened to break down the barrier between our Universe and theirs. I think that somehow a Wraith ship found its way there or will find its way there. I do know that there should not be a Sentinel in their Universe.”

“How do you know that?” Jack asked.

“Because we were engineered by the Ancients,” Carson said.

“They don’t have a Stargate and have never heard of Sentinels or Guides. The rift has to be closed before it can do more damage, but I don’t know how.”

******

“No, no, no… that won’t work,” Rodney said.

“McKay, all we need to do is send the device through the rift and it should fix this,” Simpson said.

“Yeah, great idea… except do you know where the rift is?”

“It has to be in Pegasus.”

“Yes, but where in Pegasus? Right now, we aren’t even in Pegasus, so if it is there we wouldn’t know about it. Look, all we can do is wait and see what happens. Go get some rest; we have been at this all day,” he told his team.

The goodnights were made and Rodney was packing up his laptop when John entered his lab, “after we eat, are we going to try meditating?” John asked.

“Yes… I hope that they will show up.”

Chapter Text

Jim was stalking his prey through the forest. He was close to finding it. He could smell it and hear it, but he had yet to lay eyes on his prey, yet. As he carefully made his way through the forest, past trees and brush he had yet to zone. He broke through into a clearing and found his small prey munching on the plants, but it hopped off as Jim approached.

“Well, at least I found it,” he said.

“Yes; however, it might be more productive if you did not make so much noise,” Spock said, next to him.

“I did not make too much noise, babe,” Jim said, giving Spock a playful shove.

“Of course, Ashaya. Shall we return to camp?”

“Yeah… we only have tonight left before we need to return home. We owe your parents big for keeping David while we did some training. How did you convince them of it, anyway?”

“I… hinted that perhaps it would be wise for us to have alone time prior to returning to space.”

“You told your parents that we wanted to be without our kid, so we could have sex?”

Spock raised an eyebrow at Jim, “no, I allowed them to infer our choice of activity.”

“Well, I’m glad we did this,” Jim said, grabbing Spock’s hand. “I needed to practice my skills and working out here has helped.”

“Yes, you have become better at tracking. Would you care to eat?”

“No,” Jim said, pulling Spock to him so that they were flush, “I would rather spend our last night devouring you.” He kissed Spock before he could object and was leading him towards their tent. Jim would have been fine sleeping out in the open, but his mate was hesitant that someone might come across them.

Jim had to stop kissing to open the tent and Spock took the advantage, “Jim….”

“No, Spock. I want you. We haven’t been together for what feels like months and soon we will be back on the ship and be busy. I need to feel you,” Jim said, running his hands down Spock’s back and resting on his ass. “I need to taste you,” his tongue came out and licked at Spock’s lips. “Smell you,” he buried his nose in Spock’s neck; “see you… hear you, as you come… as I drive you over the edge.” Jim had maneuvered Spock so that he was in the tent and on top of their sleeping bags; he had managed to distract his mate enough to get his shirt removed and his pants opened. Jim removed Spock’s shoes and pants and covered his now nearly naked mate with his still fully clothed body. He kissed him, again.

Spock pulled away and flipped them; Jim found himself on his back with his mate looming over him, “what do you wish, Jim?”

“Me naked and you riding me.”

Spock’s eyes darkened as he started to help Jim remove his clothes. Spock’s underwear came off and before Jim could focus on what was happening, Spock was pushing down onto his erection.

“Fuck,” Jim swore.

“I believe that was your wish,” Spock said, breathlessly.

“Babe, I don’t… so long… too long… what… fuck…” Jim said as Spock moved up and down on his cock, his words lost to the sensations.

Spock road him hard and before Jim was ready he as shouting his Guide’s name as he ejaculated into him. Panting and boneless, Jim rolled onto his side as Spock arranged himself next to him. Running his hand up and down his Sentinel’s back he asked, “Jim?”

“Damn it, Spock, I came too fast. We need more time together and I need to get some endurance,” Jim grumbled.

“Perhaps,” Spock said as he rolled Jim onto his back and hovered over his mate, “we should, what is the word, mix it up?”

Jim laughed and leaned up to kiss Spock, “I think you mean switch. I think that might be fun next time. You want to meditate?”

“Yes,” Spock said as he changed positions and pulled Jim with him.

******

Jim opened his eyes and smiled at his fellow Sentinels, “hey, were back. Sorry about not being here sooner but we were kind of busy.”

“We might have bad news for you,” John said.

“Please elaborate,” Spock replied

“Have you had any odd things happen recently?” McKay asked.

“Well, other than finding out I have a son and he is a Sentinel I don’t have much to report. Why?”

“Not what I was going for but that is nice,” Rodney said.

Jim laughed, “yes, it is very nice. It was a shock but we are adapting. What were you looking for?”

“Well, we may have found out why you are a Sentinel.”

“Good but that didn’t answer my question.”

“We did have a planet that was attacked and we have yet to find the aggressors,” Spock said.

“Did they leave any bodies?” John asked.

“Yeah, they were like mummies. Why?”

“Shit, McKay this is not good.”

“You know what did that?”

“Wraith,” McKay said.

Jim just shook his head.

“Wraith are a race of aliens that survive by feeding off the life energy of humans.”

“They suck the life out of people?”

“Yes.”

“Where did they come from?”

“My theory is that the Ancients did something that allowed a rift to occur between your universe and ours, and I don’t know how to fix it.”

“How do we stop them?”

“You kill them,” John said.

“I’m guessing negotiations aren’t an option.”

“No, you find them you kill them. Simple as that.”

“Not so simple, we don’t know where they are or how to track them.”

“They probably found an unhabituated planet to set their ship or ships on and are now breeding. If you don’t stop them they will become too numerous for you to stop them.”

“What else can you tell us?”

“When they hibernate you will not be able to read their life signs,” John said.

“Their ships are organic and need to regenerate from the damage done during hyperspace travel,” McKay added.

“Fascinating,” Spock said.

“Will you be able to find them now that we know this,” Jim asked.

“It will help but I am still unsure if it will be enough, Jim.”

“I Know,” Jim said.

“I wish we could meet in person that way I could help you with your sensor calibration,” Rodney lamented.

“Well, that isn’t going to happen but perhaps we can give you more information about the Wraith,” John said.

“Please,” Jim replied.

“Let’s see… they are hard to kill… they can regenerate so you have to make certain that they are dead… they are part insect… the have a hive mind and they are telepathic… they can trick you into seeing things that aren’t there,” John said.

“How do they respond to other telepathic races?” Spock asked.

“I don’t know… we haven’t met any telepathic races,” Rodney said.

“That might be an advantage for us then,” Jim said.

“Jim,” Spock said.

“Yeah, I know… sorry but we have to go. Thanks for the information,” Jim said as they faded away.

“I wish we could have helped them more,” Rodney whispered.

“So do I Rodney, so do I.”

Chapter Text

Jim and Spock opened their eyes together; finding themselves back in their tent. Jim leaned over and kissed Spock as he grabbed his communicator. Spock grabbed their backpacks and unzipped the door to their tent he stooped to leave it and held his hand out for Jim to follow.

Jim grabbed Spock’s hand and followed him out of the tent; kissing him again he said, “Thanks, babe. I’ll contact the ship and have them beam us back to aboard.”

“What of the camping gear?”

“I’ll have someone from the ship beam down and collect it for us. I’ll retrieve David, and you can start work on those scanners.”

“Very well, Jim.”

“Kirk to Enterprise,” Jim said.

“Enterprise here, sir,” Uhura’s voice sounded through the communicator.

“Uhura?”

“Yes, sir. I am— how may I help you, sir?”

“Please have the transporter room beam us aboard,” Jim ordered.

“Yes, sir.”

******

Jim entered the Vulcan Embassy at a brisk pace; he could feel David’s distress. He ignored the annoyed looks from the Vulcans milling around the lobby of the embassy; his only concern was finding his son. He quickly moved through the building on his way to Amanda and Sarek’s floor inside the building. Once at their door, he knocked and waited for the door to open. Sarek opened the door and moved to allow Jim entry into the apartment.

“Thank you,” Jim said as he moved past his father-in-law. Jim strode right to his son and picked him up in his arms; the boy immediately quieted. “Hey, now, what seems to be the problem?” Jim cooed.

“It would appear that you have the magic touch with him, Jim,” a voice Jim hadn’t heard in years.

“Mom?” Jim questioned as he held David just a bit closer.

“You didn’t tell me you had a son,” his mother said flatly.

“Why are you here, mom?” Jim questioned.

“To see my grandchild and my son.”

“You never wanted to see me when I was growing up, mom; now you want to see me, and my kid?”

“I made a mistake, Jim.”

“Then or now?” Jim said blandly.

“Then, Jim. Could we find a private place to sit and talk?” she said, and Jim could hear the hope in her voice.

Jim sighed, his anger was not constructive to his senses stability; taking a breath, he said, “Yeah, want to see my ship?”

“I would like that, thank you.”

Jim looked towards Amanda; he smiled at her, “Thank you.”

“I’m going to miss him when you return to space, Jim.”

“I know, Amanda. You know they put the five-year mission on hold?”

“Yes, I know. Oh, and I picked up that gift for you,” Amanda said handing him a small bag.

“Thanks,” Jim said taking the bag from her.

“I insist on being there, Jim,” she warned.

“I promise; I’ll contact you later,” he said, approaching Amanda and kissing her cheek.

******

Jim stepped off the transporter pad and handed David to his Guide. Spock accepted the child without reservation. “Spock, this is my mother, Winona Kirk. Mom, this is my bond-mate, Spock,” Jim said introducing the two.

“Ma’am,” Spock greeted.

“Spock, it’s a pleasure to meet you,” she said hesitantly.

“I’m going to take mom to one of the conference rooms to have privacy.”

“Of course, Captain. I shall take David to our quarters for a nap.”

“Thanks, babe,” Jim said kissing Spock’s cheek and turning to escort his mother from the transporter room. He gently grabbed her arm and propelled her through the ship towards an empty room. He found one and maneuvered his mother into the room. Once they were both seated, he demanded, “Talk.”

“I divorced Frank.”

“Good. Why did you want to see me, Mom?”

“I want to get to know you, Jim.”

“Why?

“I’m getting older, Jim, I realize that I made some mistakes in my life.”

“Mistakes,” Jim barked a laugh. “What do you consider mistakes, Mom?” he demanded.

“Not being there for you when you were a child. Sending you to Tarsus IV. Frank. Not trying to meet you half-way, when you asked. I’m sorry, Jim. I know I don’t deserve a second chance, but I am asking for one anyway. Sam has let me in; will you?”

“I haven’t spoken to Sam in years, too.”

“I know; he misses you, Jim. He is married and has a son of his own, Peter.”

“Good for him,” Jim said holding on to his anger for a moment longer. He could feel Spock’s annoyance with him through their bond; breathing deeply he said, “All right, you can have a second chance; under some conditions.”

“All right, that seems fair,” she said warily.

“The ship will be docked for a few more weeks if you want a relationship with me, and David you can visit us.”

“What are your conditions, Jim?”

“Don’t let my son become attached to you, Mom, if you plan on leaving him like you left me.”

“I won’t, Jim,” she said solemnly.

“I’m not doing this for me or you, Mom. I’m doing this for David; he should know his Grandmother. Know this, if you hurt him or Spock, I will not be kind. Spock and David are my number one priority; my career isn’t as important as they are,” Jim threatened.

“You would give up your career for them?”

“I’m not you, Mom. Spock is my T’hy’la; I would die for him. I would quit Starfleet if they didn’t let me take David with us. I cannot let him live the lonely life of a kid without his parents; he already lost his mother.”

“Perhaps you are better than I am,” she said closing her eyes trying to prevent the tears from starting.

“I’m trying,” was all Jim said.

******

Jim entered his quarters and found Spock waiting for him. Jim grabbed him and pulled him into a bear hug. He allowed his senses to overwhelm him with every aspect of his Guide. His center restored, he pulled away and gazed at his mate. “I’m sorry, Spock,” he said.

“Why?”

“I allowed my anger infect our connection.”

“It will happen, Jim. I cherish thee, Jim.”

“I love you, too, babe. Come on; I have something to ask you.”

Spock followed Jim into their bedroom and was startled when Jim made him sit on the bed; Jim knelt on one knee in front of him.

“Spock, you are my T’hy’la, my everything. I would kill for you, I would die for you, but most of all I will fight to live for you. Will you marry me?” Jim said talking a small black box from his pants pocket and handing it to Spock.

Spock opened the box and found a ring; it was solid black except the silver inlaid script. It read, Kol-Ut-Shan, Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations on the outside. On the inside was a small engraved badger.

“Well?” Jim asked.

“We are already bonded, Jim.”

“Yes, but I want to have you as my husband, too. I want to marry you in the human tradition, Spock.”

“A badger, Jim?”

“Is that a yes?”

“A badger, Jim?”

“My spirit animal; he will always be with you. Is that a yes?” Jim demanded.

“Will you wear a ring as well?”

Jim pulled the second box from his pants and handed it to Spock.

Spock opened the box and found a matching ring; the only difference was, etched on the inside was a picture of a weasel. “My spirit animal,” he said raising one eyebrow.

“So he will always be with me. Now, is that a yes?” Jim demanded.

“Yes,” Spock said with an infinitesimal smile on his face.

“God, you are infuriating,” Jim said surging towards Spock; he knocked him flat on the bed and pressed his body into the mattress, kissing him until his mate moaned in desire.

Chapter Text

“Jethro?” Tony called out as he descended the stairs into their basement. He knew his guide was in the basement, but he didn’t wish to startle him if he was working on his latest project.

“I’m here, Tony.”

“What are you working on?” Tony asked as he approached Jethro and wrapped his arms around him from behind.

“Toys for Abby’s nuns.”

“How did Abby convince you to make toys for the nun’s charity?” Tony asked chuckling at the image that flittered across his mind when Jethro mentioned toys and nuns in the same sentence.

“What are you giggling about?” Gibbs demanded.

“Nuns playing with little wooden trains and cars. And I was not gigging; DiNozzos don’t giggle,” he said nipping at Jethro’s ear playfully.

Gibbs chuckled along with Tony at the image of nuns playing with his toys. “She guilted me into making toys, and it is for a good cause.”

“I know, babe, and you wouldn’t be you if you didn’t agree to do this for her and the kids. Have you heard from our wayward daughter?”

“Yes, she stopped in Stillwater to see my dad. She plans on staying with him for a few days before she comes home.”

“I know I’m over protective, Jethro; it’s just I don’t like my tribe so far away from me that I can’t keep an eye on them. I wish your dad would move down here with us it would make me feel better,” Tony said with a sigh.

“If you had your way, Tony, our entire team would live with us, including the director and his family,” Gibbs said chuckling good-naturedly at his Sentinel.

Tony opened his mouth to protest but closed it when he knew Jethro was right. “Damn it, you’re right. I can’t help it, though, Jethro; I never had a family, and now that I do, I don’t want to lose any of them again.”

“I know, Tony,” Gibbs said turning in Tony’s arms so that they were chest to chest. He nuzzled Tony’s neck, marking his Sentinel. Tony liked Gibbs scent on him; it calmed him down in times of stress.

Tony hummed, and said, “want to take this upstairs?”

“What do you thi—” Gibbs started to say before the room grew bright, overwhelming Tony’s eyesight and blinding both men. Instinctively, Tony had Gibbs backing up as he moved him into a more defensible position in their basement. Slowly Tony and Gibbs regained their eyesight only to find they were no longer in the basement of their home, but in a sterile room with only one exit. Tony extended his senses trying to discern where they were, but all he could tell was they were not in their home. Before either man could speak, they both crumpled to the floor.

***

Blair couldn’t concentrate on his light meditation. He felt off and had all day; something was wrong, but he could not place his finger on just what was wrong. He heard the door to the apartment open and close and smiled when Jim called out for him.

Jim strode towards his guide and gently touched his head, caressing his hair, “Hey, Chief.”

“Jim.”

“What’s wrong, Chief?” Jim asked.

“How do you know something’s wrong?” Blair asked.

Jim rolled his eyes at his Guide, “because you are not meditating. You only have trouble meditating when something is wrong. So, what is it?”

“I don’t know, Jim. I’ve just felt off all day. I wish I knew what it was but something big is about to happen, and I’m not sure if it will be a good thing or not.”

“Should I call Simon and have him keep an eye and ear out for trouble?” Jim asked.

Blair sighed, “no, I don’t want to bother him with this, Jim. I think it’s related to Sentinels and Guides.”

“All right, Chief. How about I make us dinner?”

“Sure,” Blair said holding his hand up; Jim grabbed his hand and pulled him to his feet. He pulled the smaller man towards him and gave him a gentle kiss.

“Thanks,” Blair said when they drew apart.

“For the kiss?” Jim asked smirking at his Guide.

“For the help off the floor, big guy. I’ll thank you for the kiss later,” Blair said as he winked and strode out of the room towards the bathroom. When Blair returned to the room, he found Jim making his favorite vegetable stir-fry.

“You want to set the table Ch—” Jim started just as the room flared into a bright blinding light overloading Jim’s sight and causing Blair to close his eyes to protect his sight.

Jim couldn’t see, but he could smell and what he smelled was not their home, it was sterile. He extended his hearing, but all was quiet save for Blair’s heartbeat and breathing. “Blair?” he called out to his Guide.

“Right here, Jim,” Blair said as he took his Sentinel’s hand.

“I still can’t see.”

“My vision is coming back slowly.”

“What do you see, because I’m not getting anything off my other senses,” Jim said.

“We are in a room with only one exit, but not much else,” Blair said right before they both crumpled to the floor.

***

Daniel unlocked the front door to the townhouse he shared with Jack in D.C. He just arrived back from Colorado Springs when he had helped SG-1 explore some archeological site off-world. Jack hadn’t wanted him to go, but it was important to their fight against the Ori. Of course, it didn’t mean that Jack had sent him without Sentinel security, he sent the toughest Sentinel and Guide pair in the Marine Corps. The pair took their job seriously and delivered Daniel back to his doorstep in D.C. instead of just letting him catch a cab from the airport since none of their ships were in orbit to give him a lift back home.

Daniel dropped his back next to their front door and walked towards the living room only to stop dead and whip out his phone. He quickly took a snapshot of Jack asleep with their German Sheppard puppy Griflet on his chest. The puppy was getting too large to sleep like that, but Daniel knew that both man and dog enjoyed napping together. He quickly sent a text with the photo attached to Sam and smiled to himself waiting for a reply.  

“How much did you bet Sam?” Jack asked making Daniel jump and grumble at his Sentinel.

“Just dinner the next time we all got together, and it wasn’t a bet,” Daniel replied.  

“She didn’t believe you, did she?” Jack smirked at his Guide.

“No, she believed me, she just wanted a cute picture of the two of you together.”

“Why?”

“Not sure, but knowing Sam she probably will hold it over your head as blackmail,” Daniel said smirking at his Sentinel.

“And why would you want Sam to have blackmail material over me?”

“Maybe you will let me go to the mountain more, if Sam has blackmail material on you,” Daniel said shrugging.

“Really?” Jack started to say to Daniel as the room brighten quickly. He closed his eyes until the light receded and then opening them, he found himself on the floor of a room and not in their home. “What the hell?” he shouted finding Daniel closer than he was when they were in their home.

“Not sure, Jack, but I don’t think we are in Kansas anymore.”

“Ya think?” Jack quipped back.

“Want some help off the floor, Jack.”

Jack just grumbled as he pushed the puppy off his chest so he could stand.

“Can you tell where we are?” Daniel asked him.

Jack smelled the air and extended his hearing, but all he found was a sterile room and the heartbeat of his guide and dog. “No,” he said shaking his head.

“Yeah, I got nothing too,” Daniel said sitting down next to Jack instead of helping him up.

Jack scooted them back until their backs were against one wall of the room and wrapped his arm around his lover, “we’ll get out of this Danny,” he said turning to kiss Daniel on the cheek.

“I know,” Daniel said as he petted the puppy that had stretched out on both men’s laps in a protective stance. He closed his eyes feeling tired suddenly and slipped into unconsciousness.

***

John was pacing the floor in front of the gate on Atlantis; Lorne’s team was late, and he was worried. “How long are they overdue, McKay?” John shouted at his Guide who was currently manning the DHD.

“Two hours, John. I radioed Teyla and Ronan, and they are grabbing our gear and headed to us,” Rodney said patiently.

John turned and glared at his lover, “you do know that I’m the Colonel around her, right?” he asked.

“Yes, dear. I just wanted to save time so we can go find Lorne’s team and go back to bed,” Rodney said yawning.

John winced, he forgot his Guide had been awake for almost twenty-four hours working on fixing a power problem with the city. “Sorry, buddy. I’ll take Teyla and Ronan, and you can go back to bed,” he said apologetically.

Rodney glared at him, “like I could sleep with you off world without me, John.”

John rubbed the back of his neck and ducked his head, “sorry.” Just as he headed up the control room stairs, the off world gate activation alarm sounded. He saw Rodney raise the gate shield and heard the whoosh of the wormhole.

“Major Lorne’s IDC,” Rodney said.

John nodded, and Rodney activated the radio system. “Major, you’re late,” John said.

“I know, sir,” Lorne gritted out.

“What color are you Lorne?” John asked his second in command, concerned that Lorne’s team might be under duress. Since the Genii incident, the city had instituted a color code word anytime a team was late checking in with them.

“Pink, sir. I’m pink,” Lorne replied.

John sighed in relief. He nodded to Rodney to lower the gate shield and said, “come on home, Major.”

The Major’s team had just finished stepping through the gate when the cities alarms wailed, and the doors slammed shut. John looked towards his mate as the windows were also locked down and saw panic in the other man’s eyes. “McKay, what the hell is happening?” John demanded.

“I don’t know, John,” Rodney said panic lacing his voice.

“How the hell don’t you know?”

“Atlantis has locked me out of the system,” Rodney replied. He frantically worked his fingers over the laptop that was currently acting as an interface to the Atlantis computer system, trying to regain control. John stepped behind him a placed his hand on Rodney’s neck to try and calm him down.

“Could one of Lorne’s team have come back with a pathogen?” John asked.

“No, this is different,” Rodney said.

Then a loud humming sound started all around the city as a bright light engulfed Atlantis, John shouted as he pulled Rodney to the floor, “get down!” And the world went dark.

Chapter Text

Waiting for Pike to marry them, Jim stood next to Spock and smiled. They opted to wear their dress uniforms instead of more traditional formal wear. Spock would have preferred a Vulcan robe, and Jim wanted jeans and his leather jacket, but their mothers had thrown a fit over the idea. Bones had just smirked at him until Jim reminded him that he would have to wear his dress uniform since he was Jim’s best man. He caught Uhura’s eye as she stood next to Spock and he smiled at her when she nodded. It had been a surprise when Spock asked Nyota to be his best man and a bigger surprise when she had accepted.

“We are gathered today to unite James Tiberius Kirk and Spock in wedded bliss. Marriage should not be entered into lightly. Marriage is a long-held tradition on Earth. When two people seek to enter into matrimony, they do so with the knowledge that they are taking on the other’s burdens, but they also take on the other’s joy and happiness. Are there any objections to this marriage?”

The room was silent.

Pike continued,” James, do you take Spock to be your husband? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, be faithful to him as long as you both shall live?”

“I will,” Jim said.

Pike turned to Spock and said,” Spock, do you take James to be your husband? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, be faithful to him as long as you both shall live?”

“I will.”

“Spock, please repeat after me: I, Spock, take you James to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish till death do us part.”

“I, Spock, take you James to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, in sickness and in heath, to love and to cherish till death do us part,” Spock said slipping the ring onto Jim’s finger.

“James, please repeat after me: I, James Tiberius Kirk, take you Spock to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish till death do us part.”

Jim repeated the words and slipped the ring onto Spock’s finger.

“I now pronounce you married. Kiss,” Pike said smiling at the newlyweds.

Jim held out two fingers to Spock, and they shared a traditional Vulcan kiss to the cheers of their family and friends. Jim pulled Spock into a human kiss. Pulling apart, they rested their foreheads together. The sound of all the communicators in the room going off broke the peace of the moment. Flipping his communicator open, Jim contacted his ship, “Kirk to Enterprise. Report.”

“Sorry to interrupt Captain but a large unidentified object just appeared in orbit around Jupiter. Starfleet command is requesting we investigate since we are the only ship in range.”

“Understood. Beam us up on my signal.”

“Yes, sir.”

Jim nodded to Pike and gathered his crew; signaling the ship to beam them aboard, Jim found himself moments later, on the transporter pad aboard the Enterprise. His mother and David were behind him.

“Mom,” Jim started to say.

She held her hand up to stop him, “I’ll take him to your quarters and wait for you.”          

“Thanks,” Jim said kissing his mother and son.

Jim and the bridge crew ran through the ship, skidding into the lift. They tumbled out onto the bridge with Jim issuing orders.

“Spock, I want full scans of the object. Uhura, try contacting it and put it on screen. I want to see this thing. Sulu set a course to intercept whatever it is.” The object displayed on the screen was enormous whatever it was; it had towering spikes and looked like a snowflake. “Uhura, anything from that thing?” Jim asked.

“Nothing but a distress signal, sir.”

“Spock?”

“I am reading nearly a million life signs, Captain. There also appear to be several ships attached to the larger object.”

“That’s it?” Jim questioned.

“The life signs appear human, Captain.   I also am reading an energy shield surrounding the ship.”

“You think it’s a ship, Spock?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Uhura, continue to hail them. The transporters will be useless if they have shields.”

“Captain, I believe I can modulate our transporters to punch through their shields.”

“And beam us in blind, Spock? I don’t think so.”

“I am certain I can find a location without people in it, sir.”

“What about their weapons?” Jim asked.

“I’m not reading any, sir.”

Jim didn’t want to beam in blind, but he didn’t think Starfleet Command would wait until the ship responded to their hails. “Uhura, order a security team and a medical team to the transporter room. Spock, make the adjustments to the transporters. How long will it take you?”

“Fifteen minutes, Captain.”

“All right, I’ll meet you in the transporter room. We’ll beam over together. Sulu, you have the bridge,” Jim said nodding and heading to his ready room. “Uhura, get me Starfleet Command,” Jim said over his shoulder just before the door to his office closed.

Fifteen minutes later, Jim entered the transporter room to find, Bones and Stonn waiting.

“He won’t let me go without him,” Bones said.

“Understandable,” Jim said pointing to a security red shirt, “you will follow Stonn’s orders, understood.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Are we ready, Spock?”

“Yes, Captain,” Spock said stepping onto the transporter pad next to his Sentinel.

Jim nodded to the transporter operator, “energize,” he said. The group dissolved and reformed in an empty corridor of the alien ship. Jim extended his senses and heard voices, familiar voices. Jim stalked towards the voices with his phaser drawn, his team following him.

“What the hell happened, Rodney?” Jim heard John Sheppard ask.

“I don’t know, John. All our sensors are down, and I’m trying to get everything back up. Look out a window to see where we are,” Rodney snapped at his Sentinel.

“Rodney,” John warned.

“You are in orbit of Jupiter,” Jim said entering the room with his phaser pointed at the two men.

“Kirk?” Rodney and John said in unison.

“In the flesh.”

“Shit,” John said.

“That would be,” Jim started to say but was interrupted when a glowing being appeared in the room. Jim turned, pointing his phaser at the creature ready to fire, “who the hell are you?” Jim demanded.

“He’s an Ancient or would you prefer to be called Alteren?” Daniel’s voice floated into the room.

“You may call me Marcus,” the creature said.

“Why did you bring us here?” O’Neill asked.

“To save you. To save both universes.”

“Explain,” Spock said.

“It was necessary to close the tear between the two universes.”

“That does not explain the necessity of bringing nearly a million humans to our universe,” Spock said calmly, but Jim could feel his mates annoyance.

“The Wraith have gained too many to be destroyed. I moved the Wraith to the other universe and moved as many as I could to this universe without the others noticing. I’ve closed the tear between the universes.”

“We can’t go home,” Rodney said.

“No,” Marcus said.

“Why didn’t you just destroy the Wraith?” John growled at Marcus.

“The others would have stopped me. You are safer in this universe; the Ori were reading for battle, John.”

“You could have helped us destroy them,” John snapped back.

“The others would not have allowed that, John. I moved as many as I could here; the rest I placed in a time dilation field to ascend. I fixed the city for you. I unlocked the database, Rodney. Unfortunately, you will still need to search for information. My people are terrible at organization,” Marcus said shrugging.

“How the hell am I supposed to explain this to Starfleet Command and the Federation?” Jim asked.

“You’ll think of something, Alpha,” Marcus replied to Jim as he disappeared.

“Shooting him wouldn't have hurt him, would it?” Jim asked.

“Nope, he is just energy, but it would have made you feel better,” O’Neill quipped.

“We didn’t even get a honeymoon,” Jim said laughing.

“What?” Daniel asked.

“We just finished getting married when your ship appeared.”

“It’s a city-ship,” Rodney said. “Oh, congratulations on your marriage,” he added as an afterthought.

“Thanks, McKay. What assistance can we offer you guys?” Jim asked.

“Probably medical. Everyone we passed was unconscious like Lorne over there,” O’Neill said directing their attention to the collapsed Major in front of the gate.

“Bones, see what you can do for them,” Jim directed.

Bones approached the unconscious man and scanned him with this tricorder. “He’s just unconscious; it looks like a sedative. I can counteract it with a hypo, Jim.” Bones said.

“He’s your man,” Jim said.

“Do it,” O’Neill ordered.

Bones shrugged and injected the hypo into the man’s neck. He awoke almost instantly forcing Stonn to pull his mate away from the man.

“What the hell?” Lorne grumbled.

“It’s a long story, Lorne. Let the doctor check you over,” John ordered.

Lorne just waved at Bones. Bones moved closer to the man and scanned him with the tricorder. “You want something for your headache?” he asked the man.

“Yeah,” Lorne breathed out.

Bones injected him with another hypo spray.

“Damn, Carson needs some of those,” the Major mused as he stood.

“Could we turn that into an aerosol and wake everyone up at once?” John asked.

“Sure, but I wouldn’t recommend it,” Bones said.

“Why? Daniel asked.

“For one, you’ll have a city full of people with headaches. Secondly, you’ll have a city full of scared people.”

“Good point,” O’Neill said.

“We can’t stay in orbit of Jupiter forever,” Rodney stated.

“We need to find an ocean we can land in and shut the shield off to give us time to wake everyone up,” John added.

“I’ll contact Starfleet Command and the Federation Council, maybe they will let you land in San Francisco Bay,” Jim said rubbing his temples. Jim felt the sting of the hypo in his neck, turning to Bones he said, “Hey!”

“Doesn’t your head feels better?” Bones questioned.

“Yes,” Jim grumbled.

“Then stop being a baby,” Bones smirked at his friend.

“Funny, Bones. Come on Spock, let’s get back to the ship and contact Command and the Council,” Jim said tugging on his Guide’s hand.

***

Jim stood with Spock behind him and stared at the Admirals. They didn’t want to let the city land in the Bay, but the Council was willing to allow it if Jim was on hand to oversee the newcomers. Jim wasn’t happy; he wanted to be on his honeymoon.

“Yes, sir, I understand,” Jim said as the screen went black.

“You should rest, Jim.”

“No time, Spock. Let’s get this over with and then we both can get some sleep.”

Chapter Text

Jim stood on the Atlantis pier facing San Francisco. He was caught in his thoughts and did not feel or hear his mate and first officer approach.

"Jim?" Spock questioned.

"Hey, Spock. It's a great view."

"Yes, it is. Are you alright, Jim?"

"I wasn't zoning, Spock. I was just thinking about my meeting this morning."

"Do you wish to share?"

Jim looked around and smiled at his guide, and said, "not here."

"We could return to the ship?" Spock suggested.

"Come here, Guide," Jim said and pulled Spock to his body. Jim grabbed Spock's hand and raised it to his face; he placed Spock's fingers on his psi points.

Spock understood that Jim wanted privacy in the only way they could accomplish is with so many Sentinels and Guides on the city. Spock slipped into Jim's mind quickly, but he was shocked to find a memory.

"Captain Kirk, please sit," an admiral Jim hadn’t meet before said.

Jim sat in the chair the admiral indicated and said, "thank you, sir."

"Captain Kirk, we ask you here today to discuss the city and its potential for our use," another admiral said.

"What use, sir?"

"Captain, with Nero and then Kahn, our fleet was effectively destroyed. Our numbers are limited by our losses and the loss of Vulcan; we need that city."

"Sirs, Atlantis is not something you can just take for the people living on it right now. I think that they would seriously object and we wouldn't know how to run it effectively," Jim said, trying to stop what he now knew was not going to be a simple review of the past few weeks. Jim refrained from using his telepathy and empathy when in the presence of those not aware of it, but now he felt it was prudent to find their ulterior motives.

"Captain, I'm sure we can bypass any of their safeguards, with your help," Komack snidely replied.

"Sir," Jim started only to be interrupted by Komack.

"Captain, I don't think you understand; we did not bring you here to ask your opinion on the situation, we brought you here to tell you what was going to happen. You and your crew will convince the newcomers to allow a team of specialists on the city in three days. This team will infiltrate the city and take it over and lock it down. Once this is accomplished, we will remove the residents and begin work on intergrading the technology that this city has that is more advanced than ours. If you interfere with our plans, Captain, we will court-martial you and your entire crew. You and your precious husband will be sent to different penal colonies for your entire sentence. By the time you are released, you will be too old and frail to have a meaningful reunion."

"Yes, sir, but I must point out that the residents of the city number close to one million people, how do you plan on neutralizing all of them?"

"Do not worry about that, Captain. We have a plan; they will not be a problem. Three days, Captain, do not forget."

"Yes, sir," Jim said and left the room, realizing he was dismissed.

"Jim," Spock said still in the grips of the mind meld.

"I know, Spock."

"The Federation Council will not stand for this, Jim."

"They approved it, Spock. They know I was keeping information back about the city and the ships on it. They are worried about the attacks by Nero, Kahn, and now an unnamed foe. It makes people do stupid things."

"My father would never approve of such an action, Jim."

"He wasn't consulted, Spock. I went to him after the meeting; I had already contacted my mother to meet at the embassy so that I could see David; I let him see the whole conversation, Spock. He didn't know. They kept him in the dark because they knew he would not approve. There is a Vulcan civil war coming, Spock. Two sides, those who want to hold to Surak's teachings, and those who wish to return to your warrior ways."

"No, Jim," he started, but couldn't say more, it was unthinkable.

"I know, babe. I'm sorry. Your father is making moves to find a safe place to go, but we must get this city and these people off Earth. We cannot let any of their technology fall into Starfleet or the Federations hands. I never thought I would say that, but we have to leave, and we have two days to do it in."

"My mother?"

"Your father is making arrangements to take as many willing Vulcans away from New Vulcan with us. This city is not full, and all we, really need is a planet with a large body of water."

"An unoccupied planet, outside of Federation control, Romulan space, Klingon Space, and Ferengi Space. That will be easy."

"Sarcasm, I like it. I think we need to talk to Rodney and John. They might have some ideas."

"They are not from our universe, Jim, things are different here."

"I know, but where were they before they came here?"

"The Pegasus Galaxy. Jim, our ships cannot travel to another galaxy."

"But theirs can. I will give us some space and perhaps some people who stay here will be able to talk sense into the council and Starfleet."

"Who will stay?" Spock asked suspiciously.

"The old man and Pike."

"Two against billions."

"More will follow them, Spock."

***

The Guides were watching the tableau on the pier between Spock and Jim.

"What the hell are they doing?" Jethro asked.

"I don't know," Rodney replied. "It doesn’t look painful, though."

"They haven’t moved in nearly two hours. If I hadn't seen it with my eyes I wouldn't believe it," Daniel piped up.

"They are mind melding," Stonn said from behind the group.

"You're as bad as he is," Rodney snarked at Stonn as he pointed to Jethro. "What the hell is a mind meld?"

"It is how Vulcans communicate telepathically. We are touch telepaths. They must have needed to communicate without being overheard."

"Is it dangerous?" Blair asked.

"No," Stonn replied.

"No, it's just stupid to do it while standing for two hours," Bones grumbled, and he strode out on to the pier with his tricorder and began to scan the two men. "High levels of brain activity, but other than that they are fine."

Jim opened his eyes and sagged just as Bones made his pronouncement.

"Damn, idiot," Bones scolded his friend and Captain.

"I'm fine, Bones. We need to talk, all of us, but somewhere less public," Jim said waving off his doctor and friend's concern.

"We could use the large conference room," Rodney suggested.

"Is it secure?"

"I can make it," Rodney said.

"Do it, and get all the city's leaders and the ship captains in the meeting, too."

"On it," Jethro said. He turned and headed to find his Tony. Something about Kirk's posture made Gibbs' gut itch.

***

Jim was pacing the conference room waiting for everyone to appear. He had brought his crew into the meeting as well; he didn't want to leave them out of this decision. Jim would not make them leave the Federation, but if they couldn't stand the thought of where it was headed he would not leave them to fend for themselves. He would make them leave before anything significant was said if they didn't want to leave Earth. Jim turned at the sound of the door opening and found everyone had finally arrived. Now he just had to hope everyone was onboard with him.

Chapter Text

The doors to the conference room opened, and people poured into the room. Jim was nervous about explaining the situation to everyone; he didn't know if they would believe him or not. Spock gently touched Jim's hand in encouragement.

"All right, Kirk, what's going on?" O'Neill demanded.

"Before I get too far into this, I need everyone here to understand that what I suggest is not take lightly." Heads nodded throughout the room, so Jim continued.

"With the approval of most of the Federation Council, Starfleet has ordered me to convince the occupants of Atlantis to allow a scientific research team on to the city. Once they are on the Atlantis, they intend to take over and remove all inhabitants. They want to integrate the more advanced technology into our own technology," before Jim could continue about the Vulcan situation the occupants of the room started to shout and speak over everyone. Jim sighed and let them get it out of their systems.

A loud whistle from Bones stopped the shouting, and Jim continued his story. "We'll deal with that in a minute; I need to explain the rest of the situation. New Vulcan is on the brink of civil war. To factions want different things for the future of the Vulcan species. One wants to retain their history of peaceful exploration and logic; adhering to the tenants of Surak. The other side wants to return to the old ways; they wish to return to their warrior past, a past that almost caused their extinction. I need options and suggestions on how to handle all of this."

The room was silent, those from Atlantis didn't know how to respond to the potential for a civil war and those from Enterprise were just stunned.

"We could take the city and hide?" Rodney suggested.

"Where would we take it, Rodney? We aren't from this universe, and we don't know where we could go that would be safe," John admonished his guide gently.

"Before we decide where we are going to go and if we are going, I need to ask my crew if they want to go with us or stay here?" Jim asked.

Bones turned to Stonn and shrugged. Stonn returned the shrug with a nod that he would follow Leonard where ever he went.

"We're in," Bones said.

Jim smiled at his friend and nodded.

Uhura glanced down and then looked towards Scotty. Scotty looked back at her with the look that said I'll follow you.

"I'm in Captain," Chekhov said before Uhura made her intentions known.

"I'm in Captain," Uhura said but was looking towards Scotty.

"Yea, Captain, I'll follow you, sir," Scotty piped up.

"Captain I want to go with you, but I just got married," Sulu said.

"Bring him with you, Sulu," Jim replied.

"If he agrees, I'm in, sir," Sulu said.

"Until you know for sure," Jim started, but Sulu understood and excused himself from the room.

"Alright campers, where are we going?" Jack O'Neill asked.

"Pegasus," Spock said before Jim could answer.

"What?" Rodney shouted.

"McKay," John drawled, halting McKay's pending tirade.

"Sorry, sorry, but why would you choose Pegasus?" Rodney asked.

"Well, it's either there or the Gama or Delta quadrants of this galaxy. I have reliable information that both of those places have their own dangers that we want to avoid if possible. Look, I can't say what we'll find in Pegasus, but I do know what will happen if we stay here," Jim said frustrated with the situation.

"McKay, can we make it to the Pegasus Galaxy without a problem?" O'Neill asked.

"Of course, that Ancient fixed the city like new, and he gave us the means to make more ZedPMs, but I thought all the Sentinels would want to stay and protect Earth."

"I think if we had better knowledge of this universe we would, Rodney, but as it stands this is all new, and our instincts want to protect our guides and people," Tony said. He was onboard with high-tailing it out of the Milky Way for Pegasus. Tony needed time to get his head wrapped around their new circumstances.

"So, how long do we have?" Shepperd asked, his decision already made.

"Two days, because they plan to take the city in three," Jim said.

"Then we must begin our plans now, as we do not have much time," Teyla said calmly.

Jim liked Teyla, she was serene but deadly. She was an organizer and apparently had no problem packing up and moving on a moment’s notice.

"All right, where do we begin?" Jim asked.

***

 

The next two days went quickly. The planning stage was intense; too many chiefs and not enough Indians, or so Gibbs snapped at everyone during the talks. After that things settled down and the actual planning began.

“Tony and our team will handle corralling all the civilians and keeping them in-line while we wait to move the city,” Gibbs said with finality.

“Ronan and I will help you, Agent Gibbs,” Teyla said.

“Just Gibbs, ma’am,” Gibbs replied to Teyla.

“Please call me Telya.”

Gibbs just nodded his head in response.

Before there more pointless formality, Kirk stepped in to get the preparation moving again. “How many people can this city handle?” he asked no one in particular.

“We are currently at nearly a million people, but we could handle another 500,000 safely, while in flight,” Rodney interjected.

“How many ships can the city handle? You already have four docked and only six piers?” Kirk asked.

“Six should be safe; I don’t want to unbalance the city when we have to land again,” Rodney stated.

“But our four ships don’t need to be docked for travel, they have their own hyperdrive engines,” Carter added.

“Are your ships full to capacity?” Spock asked.

“For safe passage on an eighteen-day trip to another galaxy, yes,” Caldwell said. “I wouldn’t want to add any more to my ship, I don’t think my environmental system could handle it,” he added.

“What are you thinking, Kirk?” O’Neill questioned.

“I’m thinking I’m going to have to leave my ship behind,” he said shrugging. He could live if he didn’t leave his crew behind.

“Not necessarily, we could moor your ship to one of the piers if we had a balancing counterweight,” Zelenka said.

“Before we go any farther, how many people do you need to take with us?” Sheppard interjected.  

“A thousand, perhaps two at the most,” Kirk said.

“That’s it?” Daniel said.

“My people are an endangered species,” Spock replied.

“There are just over 10,000 Vulcans left after Nero destroyed their home planet,” Bones added, feeling sadness from his mate. Anyone who thought Vulcans were emotional drones was never married to one, he thought wryly.

“We won’t know how many are joining us until we meet up with the Vulcan ships just on the edge of the neutral zone,” Jim said. “But we shouldn’t need to worry. We should have at least five Vulcan ships. I’m going to use my ship to escape Earth, and we will meet you there, too. I’m going to transport as many as I can aboard my ship before we steal it. Can we moor the ship while in space?”

“Yes, we will have to shrink the shield and then re-extend it, but it will work. If it were Ancient tech it would be easier, but we don’t have an Ancient warship,” Rodney said, shrugging.

Jim felt a hand gently touch his shoulder, and he leaned back into the warm embrace of his mate and husband. His memories of the past few days fading as Spock asked, “are you ready, Jim?”

“Yeah, Spock, I am. Let’s get this show on the road.” They had planned everything they could, down to the minutest detail; now all they could do was hope it worked.

He and Spock entered the bridge of the ship, he looked at his crew and gave a quick nod to them. Of all the adventures they could have taken this was the most ambitious. This wasn’t an easy five year missing to explore new worlds and seek out new life, but a possible one-way trip to a new galaxy with unknown dangers and Jim couldn’t be happier.