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Spirk (with a small dose of Pinto)

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Flash Fiction Wednesdays

Flash Fic, February 01, 2023

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“Well that wasn’t exactly how I thought Valentine’s Day would go,” Jim Kirk said to his best friend, Leonard “Bones” McCoy.

“Yeah, yeah.” Bones smirked. “You expected to get laid at least two or three times.”

Jim shot him a look. “Once would have been enough. Who knew they would raid that club?”

“I did. Well, maybe not this exact night, but that club’s been crazy and asking for it for months. All that illegal shit going on there. Just be glad they didn’t lock us up and we’re leaving the station and able to go home.”

Jim sighed as they went through the double doors the Federation Police Department and back out to the fresh air. Sort of fresh air. There was a little bit of sewer smell drifting their way.

“I don’t think they arrested any patron except that dude in the back.”

“And its no wonder. I did say we should cross that place off our list.”

“The Federation’s done that for us now.” It was too bad too because Jim wore a red t-shirt and he looked good in red.

“I’m actually surprised you wanted to go to a club.” Bones turned at the end of the pathway toward Starfleet Academy and their dorm.

“Why?”

He shrugged. “I sorta thought you were seeing that Vulcan.”

“Spock?”

“You know any others?” Bones snorted. “Maybe you do. After all you spent a summer there.”

“Hottest damn summer I ever spent.” Jim grinned. “In more ways than one, I might add.”

“Wish you wouldn’t.”

Jim laughed. “Anyway, I haven’t heard from him. Not since the last time.”

“You will.”

“Maybe.”

They turned to other subjects until they got to their dorm. There standing at the door was Spock holding a dozen red roses.

Jim smiled. “Are those for me?”

Spock arched a brow. He looked vaguely annoyed, no doubt from having stood outside waiting for who knew how long. “They are not for Doctor McCoy.”

“Awe, man, way to hurt me, Spock.” Bones rolled his eyes, went past the two of them, and into the dorm room.

“Been waiting long?”

“Long enough. I was about to leave.”

“Sorry. I was at the police station.”

“Do I wish to know?”

Jim smiled and took the roses. “Nope. But my Valentine’s Day just got a heckuva lot better. Your place?”

“Unless you intend to give the doctor a show…yes.”

“No shows.” He linked his arm with Spock’s. “Perhaps a private one for you. I’m wearing red silk briefs with pink hearts on them.”

Spock shook his head. “Of course you are.” He frowned. “You were not expecting me, why are you wearing—’

“Better not to ask.”

Spock sighed and led Jim away from the Academy campus and to his apartment. A very good Valentine’s Day for Jim.

Flash Fic, December 28, 2022

This one ended up having more legs than I intended and could possibly be the beginning of a new story! Oh well LOL

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“Did you ever think we’d be together like this on Yorktown for the week between Christmas and New Year’s?” Jim asked his mom as they strolled along the street together toward the restaurant where he’d made a reservation for them.

“No way. It’s bene years since we’ve seen each other in person, let alone got to spend any quality time together. It was sheer luck that had me having to come here for my boss while you’re still here stuck waiting for the Enterprise.”

Jim agreed. “Most of my crew’s been temporarily assigned elsewhere. It was just fortuitous they decided to keep me assigned to Yorktown.”

His mom smiled and linked her arm with his. “I can hardly believe it. I’ve been so excited to get here. You didn’t need to arrange a fancy dinner though.”

“There’s not a huge kitchen in my apartment and the replicated food is okay, but I figured one night while you’re here, we can splurge.”

She sighed. “You’re right, of course. And it’s been a long time since I had a real dinner out, let alone with you.”

They arrived at the restaurant and shortly after got seated.

Jim ordered them a bottle of red wine while they settled in.

“When was it, you think?”

“Hmm?”

“Last time we went for a real dinner together.”

“Oh, gosh, Mom. Probably my first year in the Academy.”

“See? Absolutely shameful.”

The waiter returned with the bottle and poured them each a glass. Jim sent the waiter away and told him to come back for their dinner order in about fifteen minutes.

“We live in different worlds, mostly.” Jim leaned back after talking a sip of his wine. “Literally. Things could be a lot worse. At least we’re both still alive, yeah?”

She gave him a gentle smile. “Thanks to the miracles of modern medicine for you. And probably still some of that luck for both of us. How is your first office?”

Of course she’d guesseed his reference to Spock when speaking of lost parents. She’s met Spock once back when she visited Jim in the hospital back when he’d been “revived”. And she knew all about Nero. All too well.

“Good, I think. He was temporarily assigned to a science vessel exploring sector 24. He’s supposed to be back to Yorktown next week.”

“And you miss him, don’t you?”

Jim laughed. “Mom, come on. I mean yeah, I miss him because we’re friends. That’s all. He’s got a girlfriend or a fiancé or whatever.”

“Are they engaged?”

He shrugged. “I have no idea. I’d heard they were off and then after my ship was destroyed they were on.”

“Hmm. Are they on assignment together?”

“No separate assignments. He hasn’t mentioned her when we’ve communicated but that’s not unusual.” He waved that away. “Enough about Spock. Let’s order.”

He flagged down the waiter and they both ordered steaks and baked potatoes.

“This realy is an indulgence,” she said. “I can’t remember when I last had steak. Your dad was a vegetarian.”

“I didn’t know that.”

She smiled wistfully. “Oh not always. He tended to change his eating habits at his whim. He’d eat nothing but chicken. Then everything but chicken.” She laughed. “Whatever some fad was he’d read about. At the end though, yes, he was a vegetarian. And after, well, replicated steak isn’t so great. And I wasn’t…” She sighed again and shook her head.

“What?”

“I wasn’t home much after that. But you know that better than anyone, Jim. And here I’m going on about food when you were…:

“Hey.” He reached across the table and took her hand. “Tarsus was a long time ago now. And we’re having a nice dinner remember? Just the two of us.”

“Yes, you’re right.” She drank some wine. “I wish it could be three of us.”

“A logical friend of mine tells me not to have regrets,” Jim said gently.

“You’re right again. All right, all right. Tell me about the new Enterprise then.”

He perked up right away and began to tell his mom all about the improvements his new lady would have.

They had a nice dinner and Jim didn’t think about Spock again. Much anyway.

Flash Fic, December 21, 2022

I am aging Vanik here to be around 10 or 11 (it may not work with them being in the Academy still but who cares, right?)

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“Dashing through the snow, on a one horse open sleigh.”

Vanik froze as he heard the hearty singing, his heart leaping happily in his side for a moment.

Jim!

But as Vanik rounded the corner of the hallway of the apartment building floor where his Uncle Spock’s apartment was situated, Jim’s name on his lips, his hope dashed along with the sleigh in the snow.

It was not Jim singing Jingle Bells but rather a delivery man knocking on old Mrs. Miniver’s door. As Vanik watched, she opened the door and received a big box of chocolates with a gold bow from the man.

“Oh my,” she exclaimed, happily. “This will be from my grandson.”

Shortly after this exchange, she closed her apartment door and the delivery man got on the elevator to depart.

Vanik could barely tamp down his disappointment.

Jim and Spock were fighting again and Jim had taken off. Again.

Last time Jim had done this, he had gone all the way to Riverside and Vanik had followed him in order to make sure Spock hadn’t lost the best thing that ever happened to them…him. Best thing that had ever happened to Spock. But…Vanik didn’t dare go to Riverside this time, if that’s where Jim had gone. Though initially he had believed he had escaped the ire of his parents, once he returned to San Francisco, Vanik had been put on restriction for weeks.

So his new plan was to go to his uncle and ask him to be the bigger Vulcan and apologize to Jim. Vanik knew that Jim could be, as Uncle Spock and his own Father, Sybok, said, “a hot head”, however, now was not the time to fight over who was in the wrong. The important thing was getting Vanik’s favorite Uncle by marriage where he belonged.

Vanik marched over to the door of Spock’s apartment and knocked on the door.

It took ages but finally Spock answered the door, peering out through a thin slit.

“Uncle Spock—”

“Not now, Vanik.”

Through the small opening, he could see that Spock’s hair looked messy and he wore only a bathrobe with no shirt.

“But—”

“It is not a good time.”

And then it occurred to Vanik. His uncle, his beloved relative, had cheated on Jim. Even now was cheating on him.

“This is unacceptable!” Vanik heard himself yell before he could stop himself.  No wonder Jim had left Spock.

The door opened wider and Spock stared out at him.

What?”

Vanik blinked uncertainly. This was well above his age range. This was adult problems he did not want to become involved in.  

“I—:

“Bells on bob tail ring, making spirits bright…”

Eyes wide, Vanik’s heart leapt once more.

Jim?”

And like a holiday miracle, Jim came out of the bedroom in Spock’s apartment, also wearing a bathrobe, his hair wet as though from a shower.

“Hey kiddo.”

“You are here!”

Jim glanced at Spock, smiling quizzically. Spock shrugged.

“I thought…I had been led to believe…that is, were you not fighting?”

“We made up,” Jim replied, his smile widening.

“I-I see. I am well pleased.” Vanik stepped back, feeling himself blush. He had been wrong about everything, clearly, and stepped into something a kid like him had no business stepping into. “I will be on my way now.”

“See you tomorrow for Christmas movies?”

“Yes,” Vanik replied. “That would be most welcome.” And for once, Vanik definitely did not wish to stick around.  

Flash Fic, December 14, 2022

I couldn’t really find a satisfactory picture, so you get snow

Photo by Tobias Bju00f8rkli on Pexels.com

Sort of a continuation of the one in November when Jim went outside when Sam arrived and Spock brought him his a coat

“Dinner is almost ready.”

Jim bit back an irritated, snarky ‘I’m not hungry’ and instead managed to grumble, “Okay.”

He thought his mom would go away then and leave him alone. But though she might not have been born a Kirk she somehow managed to get the Kirk stubbornness, nonetheless.

He was sitting on a raised log by the barn. As long as Jim could remember this same stupid log had been in the same place. It had been used as a sort of bench for decades. His mom sat beside him instead of going back into the house where it was warm and she belonged.

A short time ago he’d sent his frozen husband inside to get warm.

“You know it wouldn’t hurt you to try to get along with your brother. You’re both adults now.”

“I didn’t know turning eighteen made all the pain go away.”

“Jim.”

He sighed. “I’m trying.”

“Not very hard.”

He shot her a look. “What do you want from me?”

“What do you want from me?  He’s my son too. What was I supposed to do? Tell him not to come? He’s hurting and he needs a place to stay right now. He’s going through some serious stuff. And what was I supposed to tell you? No, Jim, don’t come for the holidays, your brother will be here.”

“No. I don’t know. It’s just…every time I look at his stupid face I just want to punch him.”

“So punch him.”

Jim rolled his eyes. “I can’t punch him.”

“Sure you can. Maybe it’ll help.” She shrugged. “He might punch you back.”

“That’ll go over real well with Spock.”

“The Great Christmas Fight of Stardate 2266,” she cracked.

Jim laughed, he couldn’t help himself. And yeah she’d intended that. Moms were manipulative that way.

“Come on inside. I made all your favorites.”

All of them?”

“Yep. And I have eggnog and…brandy.”

Jim smiled.

“And I’m pretty sure I saw Spock taking a bite of a chocolate bar.”

He rose from the log, grabbed her hand to pull her up, and put his arm around her. “Okay, Mother mine. Let’s go inside.”

“Thanks, honey.”

“I know. Merry Christmas.”   

Flash Fic, December 07, 2022

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Spock found the boy sitting on a raised bench, legs dangling off and swinging above the stars that passed by.

This was a new feature of the rebuilt Enterprise and something Spock had yet to make use of. To his knowledge no one he personally knew had before this.

To get to the raised bench, which was high above the glass that looked over the stars, one had to climb up a set of stairs and then slide across the bench, at least to where the boy sat swinging his legs. Fortunately the action didn’t make the bench swing, but Spock did wonder how much it would hurt should the boy dislodge himself onto the glass belong.

When he was in place beside the boy, Spock waited for his attention before speaking.

Eventually the boy, approximate age eight, flicked an unreadable glance at Spock before returning to the view of the stars.

“I like to watch the stars.”

It was voice was much higher and softer than the adult voice Spock knew so well.

“Did you watch them a lot in Riverside?”

The boy nodded.

“Do you know who I am?” Spock asked.

“Mister Spock.”

“Yes. And what is your name?”

“Jim.”

Spock nodded. “You left the Christmas party in the rec room.”

“Mm.”

“You don’t like Christmas, Jim?”

Jim shrugged. “Sometimes. When Mom is home, it’s nice. But…I have this stepfather.” He eyed Spock. “Frank.”

“I know.”

“You’ve met him?”

“Not directly,” Spock hedged. “Your…older self made me aware of his existence.”

Doctor McCoy was fairly certain Jim’s de-aged child self was a temporary condition. As Jim’s husband, Spock, of course, hoped so.

“Well, he doesn’t like celebrations,” Jim explained. “One year, Sam, that’s my brother, and I dragged up the artificial tree from the basement and Frank made us put it back. He was always doing stuff like that.”  Jim shook his head. “I don’t like him.”

“Would it make you feel better to know that now in this time, Frank is deceased?”

Jim’s eyes widened. “What happened to him?”

“He was…” Spock paused. The details didn’t need to be shared with this young Jim. His adult mate knew well enough. “He passed away unexpectedly.”

“Was Mom upset?”

“No, she was not. Your mother and you enjoy a close relationship now.”

Jim looked doubtful but nodded.

“Are you hungry, Jim?”

“A bit, yeah.”

“Then you should come back to the party, there are many good things to eat. And there are people there who wish to welcome you and make this holiday special.”

“Will you be there?”

“Of course I will.”

Jim nodded. “Ok.”

Spock was relieved. This sad little Jim tugged at his heart strings. “You need assistance getting down?”

Eight-year-old Jim snorted. “Do you old man?”

“Hardly.”

“Me either.”

A short while later, they entered the party, and Spock was not surprised when the crew gravitated toward little Jim. The crew loved adult Jim too. But Jim kept an eye om Spock the whole time, so Spock never could leave.

It was a couple of days later when Jim, his Jim, finally emerged. Spock had never known such relieved contentment.

“Hey, we need to do a holiday party,” Jim told him.

“We already did it.”

Jim laughed. “Right. But I don’t remember it and since I’m the captain, I say we have another one.”

Spock, simply grateful to have his husband back, agreed, though pretending it was reluctantly.

In some ways Spock wished he had been around when Jim was a child so he could slay Jim’s dragons, but at least he’d gotten the chance when Jim was older. And though it didn’t make up for Jim’s childhood, Spock was glad.

Flash Fic, November 30, 2022

This involves the Jim and Spock from “This Place is Haunted”.

This is a sort of segue from November’s themes to December’s.

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“You’re kind of grumpy.”

Jim eyed Bones as he pushed the grocery cart. “You can out grump anyone I know. Who are you to talk?”

Bones smirked. “Okay, sure. Normally. But you have a sourpuss look on your face despite the fact you just put a jug of eggnog in the cart and ice cream. AND Christmas lights. You are the one who wanted to do ‘festive’ shopping as you called it.

Jim sighed. “I did, yeah. But Spock’s not back from visiting his folks on Vulcan yet.”

“You could have gone with him,” Bones pointed out.

“Mom really wanted me to go home to Riverside for Thanksgiving. It was the first time in I don’t know how long we were all going to be there. I couldn’t disappoint her.”

“Yeah, I get it. When does your Vulcan Romeo return?”

“I don’t know. He hasn’t contacted me since he left two days before Thanksgiving. Almost a week.”

“Maybe the love has worn off already,” Bones cracked. “Weren’t you all cozy as hell like a month ago at Halloween? Isn’t that why we went to that stupid so-called haunted house thing?”

“I’m still annoyed at you for your part in the gardener’s ‘death’. Not to mention freaking me out in the hallway.”

“James ‘I Don’t Believe in Spooks’ Kirk freaked out?”

Jim grinned. “In a totally rational manly way.”

Bones snorted. “I’m sure lover boy will be back before you know it, eyes shining Vulcan bright as he gazes lovingly into your countenance?”

“Where do you get this crap?”

“I’m an educated man,” Bones assured him. He stopped at a Christmas cookie display. “Gingerbread people. You know you could make these yourself.”

Jim grabbed a box and added it to his cart. “Who has time for that? These are pretty good for store bought. Anyway, so I’m going to decorate the apartment while I wait for him to come back.”

“I can’t see Spock caring for all that holiday stuff.”

“Maybe he doesn’t, but he cares about me, and I do, so…”

“All right, then. What else?”

Later, Jim was in the apartment he now shared with Spock decorating with garland and lights, sipping on his eggnog.

He was about to step back to admire his handy work when he heard someone at the door.

“Spock?”

Sure enough the door opened to reveal Spock, holding the bag he’d taken with him to Vulcan.

“Jim.” Spock set the bag on the floor, closed the door, and opened his arms for Jim.

“God, I’m glad to see you,” Jim said against Spock’s neck as Spock held him close.

“I am likewise pleased.” Spock looked around. “You have been busy.”

“Yeah.” Jim laughed. “Do you mind?”

“Not in the least. Your gathering for Thanksgiving went well?”

“Yeah, well enough. I mean the food was good. I liked seeing Mom.” Jim shrugged. “And your parents? How are they?”

“My mother is well, my father is…challenging. I am glad to be home.”

“I’m glad too. Come on. I have cookies.”

Thanks for checking out November! See you Friday, December 02, 2022

Flash Fic, November 23, 2022

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Winona frowned when Jim came down the hallway from where the San Francisco shuttle let off in Riverside. No one walked beside him and no one followed after him.

Still as he opened his arms as he got closer to her, his smile didn’t slip.

“Hey Mom.”

She hugged him tight. Tears sprang to her eyes.

“Hey, why are you crying?” he asked gently.

“It’s been too long since I’ve seen you in person. Even longer since you’ve been home.” She linked her arm with his. “You have a bag to pick up?”

“Mm.”

They walked to baggage collection together.

“Of course I got all your favorites. Turkey and stuffing. Mashed potatoes. Stuff to make gravy. Pies. Rolls.”

He laughed. “Sounds great.”

She bit her lip. “I, uh, I thought…I got some vegetarian food too. Because. Well, wasn’t Spock coming with you?”

Jim bent down to retrieve his bag, then straightened to give her a smile. “We had a fight.”

“Oh no.”

He nodded. “He’s a big pain in my ass lug head.”

“Now Jim.”

“Well. He is.” His communicator beeped and he took it out of the leather jacket he wore. “Speaking of lug heads.”

Despite his words, Winona knew Jim loved Spock. Sometimes that’s all he talked about. From her limited experience with Spock, she figured he felt the same.

“Well?”

Jim’s smile was much more genuine and triumphant. “His shuttle arrives in twenty minutes.”

She returned his smile. “Guess we’d better get a coffee while we wait, huh?”

Jim laughed again and hugged her. “Yeah.”

A happy Jim was her jam, and so…it would all be grand.

The best Thanksgiving in years. She was giddy.  

Happy Thanksgiving my American friends. M and I host Thanksgiving at our house and all told there will be six of us. May yours be filled with great food and gratitude.

Flash Fic, November 16, 2022

Jim had asked Spock before they’d invited Sarek and Amanda to the farmhouse for Thanksgiving if his mother would eat meat.

Jim wanted to make a roast turkey with all the fixings. He knew Spock wouldn’t eat it. Sarek too. And though Jim was okay with fixing a whole turkey for just himself because he’d eat leftovers, it would be more fun if Amanda would eat it too.

Spock had said he didn’t think so as he’d never seen her eat meat that he could remember. Because of course there were some things Spock still didn’t remember, probably never would, but that was okay. He was here with Jim and that was more than enough.

As it turned out, Amanda would eat turkey after all. Jim had contacted her directly.

“Oh yes I will. I haven’t had any in many years of course. Living on Vulcan with Sarek, well, obviously opportunities didn’t present themselves. But I’d love to join you for roast turkey. And I’d be happy to make my family’s apple pie.”

Jim had been pleased.

Jim had been a starship captain for years, even an admiral for a bit, and yet he was still somewhat intimidated by his in-laws. It was hard to intimidate Jim. But he always wanted to make a good impression on them and sometimes thought maybe he failed.

“I’m thinking of frying the turkey,” Jim announced the day before Thanksgiving. Spock’s parents would arrive later that day.

“I thought you wished to roast it.”

“I’m rethinking that. I want a delicious, moist turkey. I think frying might be better.”

“Are you certain you wish to fry a turkey?” Spock asked him.

“Yes, it’ll be easy,” Jim assured him.

“I do not wish you to harm yourself, Ashaya.”

“Spock, I’ve fought Klingons, Romulans and Gorns. I think I can handle frying a turkey.”

Spock did not respond to that, but later…

“What happened to your hand, Jim?” Amanda asked as she took in Jim’s bandaged hand when she went to embrace him in greeting.

“Just a little kitchen accident.” Jim smiled and returned her hug.

Amanda pulled back. “Spock said you were thinking of frying the turkey.”

“I’m back to roasting it.”

Amanda nodded. “Probably wise. Now if you’ll point me to the kitchen I’ll get started on that apple pie.”  

And as usual for your enjoyment Deep Fried Turkey

Flash Fic, November 09, 2022

Photo by EKATERINA BOLOVTSOVA on Pexels.com

They were out by the barn. Jim getting wood for the fireplace. His mom checking on the pony she’d bought from Mr. Jenkins up the road.

They, he and Spock, were there in Riverside in November to visit Jim’s mom. It would be a short visit. They were on leave. Jim had been surprised when Spock wanted to come with him. He supposed Spock’s recent breakup with Uhura had left him with no one to spend it with and no particular place to go.

They’d arrived that day. Had barely settled in.

“What’s between you and your first officer?” Mom asked.

“Between us?” Jim shook his head as he loaded wood into a wheelbarrow. “What do you mean?”

“I see the way you look at each other. There’s more there than friendship, isn’t there?”

Jim laughed. “No. There’s nothing between us like that, Mom. Honestly it took forever to even be friends.”

His mom frowned and came to sit on a little stone wall near where he worked.

“Really?”

Jim took a break from loading wood to go and sit by her. “The first time we met it was at an assembly to accuse me of cheating on a test he’d programmed. He detested me. Then when the distress signal came from Vulcan and we were on the Enterprise, well…”

“What?”

She hadn’t heard any of this before. She hadn’t told her.

“We had a…a fight. We disagreed on what was to be done to battle against Nero. You have to understand, Mom, he loathed me at that point.”

She pursed her lips. “Go on.”

“He had them dispose of me.”

Dispose of you?” she asked sharply. “Just what does that mean?”

“He sent me off the ship in a pod that landed on Delta Vega.”

“The ice planet?”

“Mm.”

“I don’t understand. Isn’t that against Starfleet regulations?”

Jim shrugged slightly. “Yes. Save for the appearance of…of another…I would have lost my life there. It was inhabited by giant creatures who wished to make a meal of me.”

“Jim!”

Jim looked away. “Even now I sometimes think of that time. When I returned to the Enterprise, Spock…tried to strangle me.”

She stared at him, coldness in her eyes. “And how is it that he was not brought up on charges?”

“It was a long time ago and his mother had just died.” Jim shook his head. “I’ve made peace with it.”

“I’m glad you have because I’m furious!”

“Mom.” He reached over and took her hand. “I don’t tell you this to make you hate Spock. It’s just…I’m explaining why it took us so long to even be friends. Until recently he was in a long term relationship with a human woman. We’re friends now. Good ones. But there’s…Spock isn’t interested in me that way.”

She sniffed. “Well his loss.” She patted his leg. “I’m going to go get dinner started unless you need help.”

“No, I got this.”

A few minutes after his mother left, Spock approached and began to help him put wood in the wheelbarrow.

“You done with meditating?”

“Yes.”

Spock seemed pensive and kept glancing Jim’s way.

“What?”

“May we speak, Jim?”

Jim straightened. “Sure. What’s on your mind?”

“I…I was unaware you still thought about your time on Delta Vega.”

Jim looked at him in surprise. ”You heard?”

“It was not my intention to eavesdrop. I did overhear though.”

“Well. I can’t lie. Sometimes I do think about that. I’ve dreamed about it.”

“Jim, I would never—”

He held up his hands to stop him. “I know, Spock. I know we aren’t there anymore.”

Spock stared at him, dark eyes tumultuous. “I have definitely been too subtle.”

“Hmm?”

“Jim, I wished to come with you because—”

“You had nowhere else to go?” Jim guessed. “I mean we didn’t have time to go to New Vulcan.”

“I did not wish to go to New Vulcan. I chose to come with you because I want to be with you.”

Jim blinked. “Uh. Like-like a friend?”

Spock slowly shook his head.

“Damn.”

“I am uncertain as to what that response means,” Spock said.

Jim nodded. “Then let me show you.”

He stepped forward, grabbed the collar of Spock’s sweater and pulled him into a deep kiss. He smiled. “Well?”

“Enough talking.” Spock pulled him into his arms and covered his mouth with his.

After a few more minutes, Jim stepped back, eyes shining. “Let’s go start a fire. Mom’s going to be surprised.”

“I do not think she likes me.”

Jim laughed. “She’ll grow to love you. Trust me.”

“And you?”

“I’m already there.” He took Spock’s hand. “To the future.”

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