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“This is nice,” Jim said a few days later, on Friday, when they decided to go out to a restaurant together.

It was one that would accommodate Spock’s vegetarian tastes as well as Jim’s not so much. He was used to Nyota’s eating requirements, and going to “health food” places, but at least this one was just a nice restaurant.

On the way there, and all the way to their table in the back, Spock kept his knitted cap on the cover his ears. Jim felt bad that he felt the need to wear it, but on the other hand, he also knew how people were.

Once at the table though, Spock did remove it.

“They have my family’s Cabernet Sauvignons here. I’m thinking of getting a bottle. Would you have some?”

“I don’t drink wine.”

Jim smiled. “Do you drink blood?”

“I beg your pardon?”

He laughed and shook his head. “Dracula. You know, from the movies. He’d sometimes say that. Like Frank Langella from the 70s,  I think.”

Spock shook his head.

“No? Okay, well.” Jim just smiled.

“Unknown references notwithstanding, Jim, I do not normally drink red wine, but since it’s from your family’s vineyard I am willing to do so.”

“Good.”   

When their waiter came, and he started staring at Spock, Jim gave him the stink eye and the waiter quickly looked away and covered.

“We’ll have a bottle of the Kirk Vineyard’s Cabernet Sauvignon.”

The waiter nodded. “Coming right up.”

“Is this okay?” Jim asked. “I mean I know going out was my idea. I just thought it might be nice for kind of a real date.”

“It is perfectly fine, Jim.” Spock paused. “And it is nice.”

“But?”

“Why do you assume there’s a bit?”

He sighed. “There’s always a but.”

The waiter arrived with the bottle and poured even for Jim to sample. Of course he was quite familiar with the taste.

“Great, thanks.”

The waiter poured them both wine in their glasses and Jim sent him away while they continued to look at the menu.

“You don’t mind if I get a steak, do you?”

“Of course not. You may order whatever you want.”

“What are you thinking of?”

“Possibly the pasta primavera.”

“Good choice. If you like veggies.” Jim laughed again.

“I do.” Spock’s lips curved and he took a sip of the wine. “While I am not entirely familiar with everything wine is supposed to be, this is pleasant enough.”

“I’m glad you think so. It’s Dad’s pride and joy.”

“You mentioned a but.”

“Right. Just…I don’t know. Does it seem strange or even stupid to go out on a dinner date when you’re going home to Massachusetts soon?”

“Massachusetts,” Spock repeated softly.

“That’s where Vulcan is, right?”

Spock nodded. “Yes, it is East of here.”

“Every time I get involved with someone I end up liking, well, something happens that ends things. In your case, obviously, you’re getting out of dodge.”

“Getting out of—”

Jim waived that away. “Another saying. It means leaving.”

The waiter hovered nearby and Jim gestured him over. They made their orders and then Jim waited for him to leave again.

“It seems to me,” Jim continued. “That this is all kind of a waste of time on something that doesn’t really have a future.”

“I know and I am sorry.”

He nodded. “But I like you so much, I can’t seem to help myself with waiting the time anyway. When you leave, I’m going to…well feel pretty crappy to be honest.”

“It will be the same for me.”

Jim reached over and took Spock’s hand. “Somehow that doesn’t make me feel much better.”