“Papa, live with you.”
Jim had just thrown a big purple plastic lightweight ball toward David who gleefully batted at it until it tumbled to the ground. He smiled and walked over to his son, crouching down.
“Papa would love that,” Jim said carefully. “You like living with Mama.”
“So Mama would feel sad if you lived with Papa.”
David puckered his lips. “Live together.”
“Your Mama and me we care about each other so much, but we don’t live together.”
Jim took David’s hand in his. “Papa is on a ship, like the one I gave you. But you know, as much as we care about each other, we both care even more about you. You’re the most important one to both of us.”
David stared at Jim, his lower lip sticking out.
“I need you to watch your Mama for me and keep her safe, okay?” Jim wasn’t even sure his son understood what he was saying.
“Okay,” David agreed, looking very solemn.
Jim decided it was time to lighten the mood. “Let’s go in and have ice cream with your grandma.”
David turned excitedly to run into the house. Jim went to stand, but was suddenly hit by a powerful wave of dizziness. His eyes blurred.
Then suddenly Spock appeared before him, leaning over someone in a biobed. Spock looked unexpectedly distraught. He turned to face someone and then the scene changed. Uhura was standing in front of Spock, angry. She raised her hand and struck Spock across the face.
Jim was being shook and then he looked down into David’s pale face. His eyes were very huge.
He smiled. Or tried to. “It’s all right, David. Papa is here.”
He stood now and took David’s hand as they walked into the farmhouse together. David released Jim’s hand and ran to Jim’s mom.
“Ice cream! Ice cream!”
Jim exchanged a look with Winona, who frowned, then grinned at the boy. “Chocolate or Strawberry?”
“Both!” David cried gleefully.
“Oh, you really are Jim’s son. Okay, some of each.”
Jim wearily sat in the nearest chair. Often visions exhausted him. This one definitely had. But he had no idea what it meant. It had looked like the medbay on the Enterprise.
“Want some coffee, Jim?” his mom asked.
“Yeah. Yeah. That sounds great. Thanks.”
She poured him the coffee and brought it to him before even dishing out ice cream for David. She looked at Jim. His mom knew about the visions. Had even witnessed him having one before. She’d once told him that there were rumors, according to Jim’s dad, that quite a while back one of gran’s family had met and mated with a seer from the planet, Nestron, a mysterious planet that even now the Federation didn’t know all there was to know. Nestron had been destroyed many years ago also mysterious and all that was left was a lifeless hull of a rock.
“Did you see something?” she asked softly.
“Maybe, yes, I don’t know. It was fleeting. I don’t even know what it meant.”
“Grandma, ice cream,” David yelled from by the freezer.
She stared at Jim a moment longer. “Coming.” She turned back to David with a smile.
That night his sleep was disturbed by dreams, nightmares really. He didn’t really remember any of them except the last one he’d had.
It woke him up around three am and there was absolutely no way he could get back to sleep. In the dream, Rigel Three was attacked by Klingons and Carol was an immediate casualty. David was left alone, crying.
Then he woke.
Beside him in his bed, David slept on, but Jim’s heart was racing.
Had it been a vision or merely a dream brought about by a little anxiety with David being taken to Rigel Three by Carol?
Jim found his PADD and sent a message to Carol. But of course she ignored him, as he knew she would. She had laughed later when they’d talked in person, as she came to collect David from him. She had no reason to believe he had visions, so he didn’t real blame her. He could not hold her back from leaving.
He kept it to himself then. After he had hugged his son goodbye and Carol, too. He’d hugged her tight, unable to shake the feeling he would never see her again. And he could do nothing about it. He’d tried.
When he got to Yorktown for the final week’s preparations, he was relieved to see Spock. Finally.
“Mister Spock,” Jim greeted Spock with a smile as he got off the shuttle and saw Spock waiting for him. “What a pleasant surprise.”
“Captain, I was alerted to your impending arrival.”
“Well, good. How long have you been on Yorktown?” Spock fell in step beside him as they made their way out of ship docking area and over to the lift that would take them up to the streets of Yorktown.
“I arrived last evening,” Spock replied.
“Nyota will arrive tomorrow. She left New Vulcan early in order to see her family on Earth.”
“Ah, good. Glad she got the chance.”
They got on the lift and rode up in silence. Jim stepped out first when it stopped.
“Did you enjoy your leave, Captain?”
“Yeah, I did. Spent most of it with my mom in Riverside. Got to spend a week or so with my son. Yeah, it was good.”
“I am gratified to hear it. David is well?”
“He is, yes. He’s going with Carol to Rigel Three soon for a temporary assignment she has there,” he said, neutrally. What he’d seen in his dream was still very much on his mind, but Spock would be completely dismissive. “You and, um, Uhura, did you—?”
“You know, get married, or um, what is it…?”
“Bond,” Spock supplied.
He knew that, of course. He knew that well. But he was distracted by Carol and by the whole idea of Spock and Uhura living happily ever after together.
“We did not,” Spock said. “We are not at that level in our relationship yet.”
Jim frowned. They’d been ‘dating’ for years. When did it get to that level? But the truth was, as weird as Jim thought Spock’s response was, he was also incredibly glad. More glad actually than he ought to feel because he had absolutely no right to feel anything.
“Oh. Okay,” he said instead.
And they made their way to the first of Jim’s many meetings he’d have to have. He got busy with planning and even some negotiations, but he still thought of Carol and David somewhere in the back of his mind.