“Captain James T. Kirk.”

The guy behind the desk looked up. “Are you really?”

Jim nodded. “Yes. And Commander Spock. Here to see the prisoner.”

“Which one?”

Jim glanced in Spock’s direction.

Spock straightened. “Cadet Vanik. We were told he was brought in two hours ago.”

“Oh, right. The half Vulcan. Okay, cellblock twenty.”

“Can we take him home?” Jim asked.

The man looked at his list. “Yes. Long as you pay the fine.”

Jim looked once more at Spock, who nodded.

Jim left Spock to it and then went through the indicated door into the corridor and the cells.

He found cell twenty.


The young man quickly straightened from the bunk he was resting on and stood, rushing to the bars.

“Uncle Jim!”

Jim looked at him. “What are you supposed to be?”

Vanik looked down at himself. “Frankenstein.”

Jim arched both brows. “I see. Want to explain yourself?”

“Well, um, there was this party and this fight and…”

“You got in a fight.”

Vanik hung his head. “Yes, sir.”

Jim glanced down the corridor as Spock and a guard came their way.

“All right. We’ve paid your fine. You can come home with us.”

“Thank you!”

The guard opened the door and stood back to let Vanik exit the cell. “You’re free to go, kid. Don’t end up in here again.”

“I will not.”


“Uncle Jim seemed angry,” Vanik told his uncle much later as they sat having tea together.

“More…disappointed. Our time is limited here in San Francisco. We depart on the Enterprise the day after tomorrow. Jim has many conferences prior to that and he was forced to take time off from his schedule for us to retrieve you.” Spock sipped his tea. “With your parents on another planet, they looked to us to literally bail you out.”

“It was a Halloween party.”

“I gathered by your choice of attire.”

Vanik blushed. “There were attendants of the party being unpleasant and I admit my emotions were not entirely under control.”

“Given Sybok is your sire I am not altogether surprised. Still you will be lucky if this does not affect your record at the Academy.”

“Do you think it will?”

“What will?”

And suddenly Jim was there, at their outside table, looking good enough to eat, Spock thought, dressed casually in jeans and a t-shirt with a leather jacket. He carried with him a coffee and a pumpkin cheese Danish which he was already devouring as he sat.

“Uncle Spock wondered if my arrest would make it to my Academy record.”

Jim nodded. “It would have, yes, but somebody you know and love was able to use his influence.”

Vanik brightened at once. “Really? Thank you, Uncle Jim.”

Jim waved that away. “Just see that you keep out of trouble from now on, Vanik. Spock and I will be leaving again and your parents—”

“Yes, yes. I will behave.” Vanik reached over and tore off a piece of Jim’s Danish.

“Is that behaving?”


Jim laughed. “It’s fine, kid.”

Vanik smiled slightly. “And you? You two are well? With everything?”

“Of course we are.” Jim smiled at Spock and touched his fingers to Spock’s.

Spock’s eyes warmed. “Now, tell us how your classes are going.” Vanik popped the pastry into his mouth. “Very well. My one class is—”