And so we come to the last flash for December. Oh what fun it has been. We rejoin the Spock and Jim from the Prime in the Library and Rudolph flashes.

“I’ve been thinking.”

“God help us.”

Jim frowned at his best friend, Bones. “I’m serious.”

“I know. And whenever you say I’ve been thinking and I’m serious, I say God help us. Because we’re going to need it, Jim. I don’t know what you’ve got in that pretty little head of yours, but I’m worried.”

“You exaggerate. I was just going to suggest we go to that new club down the street from the Academy for New Year’s Eve.”

Bones sputtered. “Sure. Just how I want to spend the night. In an overcrowded smelly club with people pawing each other.” He paused. “What time?”
“What time for what?” Spock asked, suddenly appearing at their table. He touched his fingers to Jim’s who smiled at him.

“Genius here wants to go to that new club for New Year’s Eve.”

“You should go, Doctor,” Spock said smoothly.

“I…should?”

“Indeed. However, unfortunately, Jim cannot join you.”

Jim looked at him. “I can’t?”

“That is our rescheduled dinner with my parents. From when you were previously ill.”

“Oh. Damn. Right. Sorry.” He grinned sheepishly at Bones. “Never mind, Bones. I’m having dinner with Spock’s folks.”

“It was probably a bad idea anyway,” Bones said. “I should go. I have a test I need to study for.”

After Bones left, Spock stroked his finger along the knuckles of Jim’s hand.

“Are you sorry you cannot go to the club that night?”

“No. I mean we can go any time. Bones is right, probably too crowded for New Year’s Eve, anyway.”

Spock continued to soothingly brush his knuckles. He had a way of calming Jim that he really appreciated.  “Did you really forget the dinner or were you attempting to get out of it?”

Jim coughed. “What? Of-of course not.”

“Jim.”

“I did forget, but maybe because I’m kind of sort of blocking it out.”

“May I ask why?”

He sighed. Maybe dramatically. “You won’t understand.”

“Perhaps not,” Spock agreed. “But I would like to. It is my belief that you and I have become quite close and are in a mutually beneficial monogamous long term relationship. Am I incorrect?”

A strange warmth filled Jim, which was crazy. Because it seemed such a longwinded way of saying, aren’t we a couple? And yet he liked the words. A lot.

“No, you aren’t wrong. We absolutely are.”

“Then, will you explain your reluctance?”

Jim spun his coffee cup around, keeping his eyes on the cup rather than Spock. “You know. You…you’re my first.”

“You were not inexperienced before our first sexual encounter.”

The confusion in Spock’s voice had him looking up.

“No. Not that.” He hadn’t lied to Spock, he’d been quite upfront that he’d had quite a bit of sexual experience prior to them meeting. “Relationship. You’re my first serious relationship.”

“And I hope to be your only one.”

Jim swallowed, his face feeling warm. “Yeah. And see, that’s it. Exactly.” He looked away again, back to his coffee mug.

“I do not understand.”

“Spock…I love you. I’ve never felt this way about anyone. But I’ve never met anyone’s parents either. And, well, your dad has something of a reputation, and what if they hate me?”

Spock didn’t respond. He just remained completely quiet. For so long, that Jim’s gaze rose once more to look at him, and was greeted with wide brown eyes.

“You…you okay?”

“I love you as well,” Spock whispered.

“Yeah?”

“You have not yet said these words until now.”

Jim was surprised when Spock seized his hand in his. “I know. I…like I said, this is all new to me.”

“And to me. My depth of feeling has never reached this level with another. My parents will like you, Jim, simply because you are my chosen one.”

Jim smiled a little. His stomach was full of fluttering butterflies. “Chosen one, huh?”

“Indeed. So, will you spend the beginning of the New Year with me meeting my parents?”

Jim laughed. And stroked his fingers along Spock’s. “Yes. Of course I will. And for the record, I want the same. With you.”

Spock’s eyes now sparkled. “Then it should, indeed, by a Happy New Year.”