In the morning, when he woke, on a tray directly in front of him, Jim found a cup of hazelnut coffee, his favorite, fixed just the way he liked it, with oodles of cream. Upon reaching for it, Jim realized it was still hot, so using his Sherlock Holmes deductions–he loved to read, okay–he knew that meant whoever brought it for him had been there very recently.

It was not hospital coffee.

Next to it, neatly wrapped in a napkin, was a cheese pastry, also his favorite.

That meant that one of two people had left it for him.


Or Spock.

Normally, in these circumstances, with Spock avoiding him as perfectly as only Spock could do, Jim would have put his money on Bones. But the coffee place where he especially liked the hazelnut coffee was near the apartment he shared with Spock, or had, because most recently Spock had not come home, but in any case, this coffee was from there. And the cheese pastry from the bakery also near the apartment.

And Bones loved him and all, but Jim just didn’t see him going that far out of his way when he could have simply stopped at the nearest coffee and bakery by him or even by the hospital.


This had Spock all over it.

Which meant Spock had come to see him but hadn’t bothered to stay to make sure he was awake for the visit.

And he loved Spock. He did. More than anyone in his life, past or present, but the damn Vulcan could be the biggest pain in the ass.

He tore off some pastry and stuffed it in his mouth, moaning at the goodness of it all.

“Morning, Jim, I brought your…” Bones stopped just inside the doorway of the hospital room. He held a hospital tray full of scary looking hospital food. He frowned. “Where’d that come from?”

“Spock was here.”


Jim shook his head. “Not the old one. My Spock. My, uh, former Spock, I-I guess.”

“He brought you breakfast?”

“Seems like it. Only you and him know of my love for this stuff so if it’s not you, it’s him.” Jim sighed. “He was here recently too cause the coffee is hot still.”

Bones looked down at his tray. “What am I supposed to do with this crap?”

“Help yourself to the coffee. It’s probably weak anyway. You like it weak.”

His friend grimaced.

“Bring the rest to me. I’ll eat that too. I’m hungry.”

Bones removed the coffee from the tray and chucked it into the trash and then brought the tray over. “You look better this morning. Sleep well?”

Jim took a second to think about it. “Yeah. Actually. Really well. Which is odd. I don’t think I had any dreams.”

“Good, you need the rest. I’ll keep you one more night and then tomorrow you can be released.”

“I can probably be released today.”

Bones smiled. “Yeah? Where did you get your medical license?”


“Don’t you Bones me. I’m not budging on this, Jim.”

Jim sighed and picked up the rest of his pastry. “They’re having a memorial today.”


“Uhura told me.” Jim finished off the pastry and reached for the scrambled eggs. “I was going to go.”

“Ah. Well. I’ll go in your stead.”


“I’m not kidding around here, Jim. Someone has to take care of you. And it’s obviously not going to be you and it’s not going to be what’s-his-name. So that leaves me.”

“What’s-his-name just lost his planet and many family members, friends, and colleagues.”

“I know that. And I cut him some slack because of that. I do. But I also watched him nearly strangle you to death. He ought to be up on court martial charges.”

“No way.”

Bones sighed. “I know. I said he ought to be. I know he won’t be. I get it. He wasn’t himself. But that doesn’t mean I can easily ignore what he did to you. Or that he hasn’t done anything to repair what happened. And a coffee and a pastry doesn’t cut it. Not in my book.”

Jim smiled faintly. “I know.”

“Eat your breakfast. And then maybe you can have visitors.”

“Are there people waiting to see me?” Jim thought about it. “Other than like admirals for official business that is.”

“There are those too. But those I told to get lost. They can have you when you’ve been discharged. No, real people. One of them is Pike’s wife.”

“Number One?”

Bones snorted. “Yeah. Wants to thank you for rescuing her hubby from the Romulan ship. But not until you eat. Then I’ll start sending them in. But keep it all brief. I want you to sleep some more.”

“Bossy SOB,” Jim muttered under his breath as Bones turned away.

“What was that?”

“Oh. I said this all looks good.” Jim batted his eyelashes.


When Bones left, Jim picked up the coffee and took a sip. It was probably crazy but he could even smell Spock on the cup. And the more he thought about it, the more he thought, maybe he woke in the night, and saw…something. Someone in a chair nearby. Spock maybe? Jim didn’t know and it was so vague he might have imagined it anyway. He touched his face, almost feeling Spock’s fingers on his cheek. Surely not, though. Spock spend the night in a chair by his side? Helping him sleep? And then bringing him coffee and a pastry? His favorites.

Maybe the way Spock used to be.

But now? It didn’t seem at all likely.

Jim shook his head and reached for the tapioca pudding.