Out of his shell

What if they never served on the same ship and never became the legendary crew Star Fleet regarded? What if they all met at a nursing home? What if it Spock was in a shell of his own? Much like Jim would be. And all it took was McCoy to be there to tow them both out as much as he will regret it.

Inspired by Jim Carrey's second parody of Star Trek in living color.


41. 41

When it rained, Spock's hands ached. They used to be so nimble. He hadn't been on a planet long enough like this to actually experience rain. Jim insisted he go to Doctor Cameron, n the middle of writing, to relieve his pain. Spock's knuckles ached when he did simple things, as he came to find out. At least his back wasn't aching. Chekov had fallen victim to an aching back last month because of strainous activity that involved using the Wii with two Klingons. The pain was eased but Koloth and Karhlee never let it down. It was only a matter of time before Spock's back started to ache. Everyone was placing bets namely eleven Bajorans, thirteen Andorians, five certain humans, ten Klingons,and four Deklans to name a few. Doctor Cameron and the nurses did not approve of betting on pain so they stayed out of it. There were dates listed for 2388.

McCoy bet on April 4th,2388.

Jim,Sulu, and Chekov bet on February 1st,2388.

Uhura bet January 1st,2400.

Scotty bet March 2nd,2388.

Koren,Karhlee, Koloth, Trelane,and Terrel bet June 1st.

The other bets were all over the place between 2388 and 2400. Spock was skeptical that he would live to see the 25th century with his illness but everyone was optimistic that he would out live them all except for McCoy. McCoy's out look on life had changed recently due to Spock's inclusion into his life. Or at least Spock had believed, because the doctor didn't talk about his mortality that often. Spock had not pried into McCoy's memories in the only mind meld he shared with the doctor. Back in September, McCoy had a nightmare. It was Spock's turn to sooth the man to sleep by singing a song in Vulcan. The doctor was half awake at that time but mostly asleep. Spock and McCoy still had the reward for 'Best costume pairing' dangling on the wall beside the doorway in their quarters. Spock's wrist had yet to ache. He had not been straining it,nor attempted to strain it.

When it rained, he would feel an ache in what once never hurt. Getting old was, indeed, a pain in the ass. So Spock had to withstand the pain he experienced carefully taking the wrapping off the present. As Spock aged, he gradually grew colder. The temperature on Aura had made an exception. He felt fine. It didn't bother him anymore, but maybe it was because of the atmosphere. The laid back relaxing atmosphere that startlingly could not peg down McCoy's grumpy demeanor. McCoy was busy tearing away the wrapping. When it rained,Spock wouldn't complain about the pain he was in but the first time around Jim was the first to say, "Spock, why are you so quiet?" with a concerned expression on his face. Jim pried it out of Spock then insisted he get relief for that by Doctor Cameron. Later, when Spock returned, McCoy and Jim were watching a rerun of General Hospital on Qo'Nos. When it rained the next time, McCoy complained of his arthritis flaring up. Jim had a content smile on his face. And McCoy did it, again, in Spock's earshot. The doctor did this every time it rained, Spock suspected McCoy was pretending because arthritis is not started by the pressure of air and water moisture against the ground. It was highly illogical. Regardless, McCoy's intentions were pure. Spock would never admit it out loud but McCoy's plan was working.

Sulu and Chekov sat alongside each other tearing away the deeply layered wrapping. Their hands were like swords tossing the wrapping into the nearby garbage can that dispensed of the garbage. Their hands were like swords. Uhura was sitting in a chair slowly unwrapping the box. Most of the elderly were sitting in chairs rather than on the floor because 1, their legs wouldn't allow them;2, their back;and 3,they were not in the mood to do so. Trelane was ripping apart a large box covered in red wrapping with a white bow. McCoy opened the box then took out a small black case.

"Huh?" McCoy said. "What is this?"

Spock had taken the bow off his box and delicately was unraveling the box.

"I got a flute!" Chekov cheered, waving the black item in the air. "That was made in mother Russia!"

McCoy smiled, taking out a necklace attached to a medallion.

"A medallion of Georgia," McCoy said, his eyes wide in awe. The doctor turned his head toward the Vulcan. "Is this Vulcanian or standard gold?"

"Standard gold." Spock said.

"Pssst," Jim said,leaning to his side. "Look underneath." McCoy turned the object over. "He really loves you."

Spock sent Jim a death glare. Jim turned off his hearing aid then resumed unwrapping his present. McCoy was holding the medallion that was small and rounded fit to be placed on his chest. He turned it back over. It looked like the one he had over a hundred years ago. It even had the inscription it. Except it were brand new. It had the date stamp when it had been created. It was made November 1st, 2387. The doctor's usual frown was replaced by glee both on his face and in his eyes. McCoy looked over in the direction of the Vulcan.

"Well,well,well then," McCoy said. "You outfitted the medallion in a rather nice color."

"Green is your favorite color." Spock said.

"You remember." McCoy said, jaw half slack.

Spock raised his right, gray arched eyebrow.

"Remember what?" Spock asked.

"Your first night." McCoy said.

"What did I do on my first night?" Spock asked.

"Nothin'." McCoy said.

"Well, you probably talked about colors, apparently." Jim said. "It is only logica--" He gasped seeing what was in the box he had torn open. His eyes were staring down inside as he pulled back the wrapping grasping at the item set in the middle. McCoy sighed appearing to be annoyed at the word 'logical' rolling an eye. Spock returned to unraveling his present. "This. . ." He gently picked up the sculpture out of the box using the pillow it was set on. "Is the best gift . ." He appeared to be teary eyed. "I have been given."

McCoy put the necklace around his neck and the medallion landed square below his neck. It was a small gift. Five years ago he was given the old version that allowed people to experience a holodeck called the hologoggles. He was given that by Sulu. The next year he was given a potted plant. McCoy suitely returned it to the waiting room then furiously informed Koloth stealing is a dishonorable act for a Klingon and personally informed Koloth that he has no honor in his eyes from then on. The next year McCoy was given a pair of earplugs that he lost. Within mere weeks, of course. McCoy was given a new pair of slippers that he had to replace before Halloween arrived. And this year topped the cake. McCoy held the medallion right up in his direction. Jim was holding the Enterprise, a bit miniature,the original model that is. McCoy looked down to the edge of his shoes to notice there were other presents. Which was new since the last five years there were gift baskets full of fruit, candy,and padds that had newly made novels. Don't get it wrong, but McCoy looked forward to reading them in his bare hands.

"A Russian nowel made by a Russian holoprogram!" Chekov cheered. "I lowe it!" He had it against his chest. On the cover was entitled USS Locksmitch and the temple of doom. It was a archeological starship that was not themed like a Galaxy Class starship. Below the starship read 'By Pavlen Petrov' in highlighted golden color. "I have been vaiting for this installment for months!"

"Didn't the Locksmitch get destroyed in the last novel?" Sulu asked, appearing to be confused.

"No," Chekov said, lowering the novel into his lap. "It was the kommander's imagination going vild about the Romulan statue artifact kontinuing to affect the starship."

"Oh." Sulu said.

Chekov cracked a smile.

"You are more than velcome to reread the prewious installment." Chekov said.

"I would love to." Sulu said.

Our view went over to Scotty. Scotty took out a large book that was enlisted as, "Galaxy Class engineering" by Geordi La Forge. Scotty appeared to be intrigued by this but the intrigued turned into a pleased smile on his face. Scotty mentally went back to the time he had on the Enterprise D. It was not the same when stepping on the holodeck on the bridge of the original Enterprise. To actually serve on it was a dream that should have come true. He had been eying it since Captain April captained her then Captain Pike. He changed the scenery then to the engineering. A place where he never served in. Getting on a holodeck was entirely new and refreshing to the Scottsman. The first time he used a holodeck. Not many people in the nursing home used the holodeck. The only people who had been using it a lot that year were Jim,Spock, and McCoy. It brought interest into the holodeck. These days, startlingly, McCoy and Spock dragged in Uhura and Scotty into the holodeck to have some fun while Jim was sleeping. Jim would have wanted the two to have fun despite his lethargic demeanor. Scotty opened the novel then turned to the first page.

Spock took the lid off the box then set it aside. He heard a whimper from inside the box. Spock's eyebrows rose up disappearing into his hairline. Spock reached into the box then slowly took out a furry lion yet bear cub like animal from the the gift. It was a Sehlat wiggling in his small grasp. The sides of Spock's mouth started to curl upwards. Spock placed the Sehlat on his lap then stroked the little ones fur while the little critter mewed. Spock picked up a flat square box from the corner of his shoe then carefully opened it. The Sehlat flopped over onto his backside flailing all four paws in the air. Spock rubbed the Sehlat's belly. Sulu took out five new pots from his package with labels of new,unique exotic plants. Out back there is a green house connected to the nursing home since there are in fact a few people who had green thumbs. Sulu's face was beaming. McCoy ripped open his package to find a stack of crossword books with a appropriate amount of pens on the side. McCoy went to the next package. Nurse Gilbert was nearby, noticing Jim had fallen asleep,again.

Gilbert looked down toward the padd he held appearing to be concerned.

"This is less comforting for Captain Kirk's activity. . ." Gilbert muttered in a low distinguishable voice.

Spock unwrapped what was covering the last present. On it was enscribed: Spock, Junior. Junior turned on to his belly licking the Vulcan's fingers using his tongue. Uhura gently unwrapped her package and her eyes widened when she saw what was resting inside. She carefully lifted it up from the box. On the base of the painted sculpture was of a young, black woman at her station with one hand on her ear with the communication device and one hand on her station with her head turned toward presumably the direction of a captain. She had a short lived gasp noticing the fine detail to the red uniform. The dangling golden earrings that appeared beautiful yet unique. The fine hair that was up in a bun but short. The long boots ending below the knees. Koloth ripped off the packaging around the painting to discover it was the picture of a crashed bird of prey with a Klingon warrior overlooking it from the cliff side. Koloth was never-the-less pleased of this. Terrel opened her package to find several new additions for her book collection. Spock slid the collar around the Sehlat's neck. Marg'less took the wrapping from around her gift to discover it is a basket of new yarn. Koren and several of the other residents recieved gifts that made them happy.

Jim awoke with a jerk catching the Enterprise from falling then took out his pad and resumed on fine tuning his biography taking the pad out from the corner of his side. His eyes were steadied on the screen appearing to be irritated with his own biography. Apparently it had been taking longer because of his sleeping schedule cutting down into it. He was almost done. Just a few more paragraphs. He was getting close to the part where he met Spock then really met McCoy face to face hearing the georgian. He was using a pen that was to the side. He had the Enterprise model in his free left hand while his right forearm kept the padd up allowing Jim to do the writing balanced. Jim was considering translating it into all languages namely being Vulcan, Klingon, Andorian,Bajoran, Deklan, and so on. Jim had all ready approached Koloth to do the translating when he was done. Koloth accepted Jim's request on the terms that he got the translation into Klingon credit. Jim could give away that.

Gilbert walked in on Doctor Cameron reorganizing the tools.

"Miss Cameron. . ." Gilbert said.

Cameron turned from the cabinet.

"Fred," Cameron said. "What can I do for you?"

Gilbert came forward.

"It's about Captain Kirk."

Cameron sighed.

"What did he do now?"

Gilbert put the padd on the table.

"He is sleeping more often."

"That's part of being old as he is."

"But the people older than him don't sleep the day a majority of the day away!" Gilbert sighed, rubbing the back of his neck. "I mean, he's a sweet guy. And the only people I see almost sleep the day are back in that room not paying attention to a single damn thing happening around them!" He pointed over his shoulder then he paced back and forth briefly pinching his nose. "I lost my father to irumodic syndrome ten years ago. He refused to have the medicine that relieved it. Eventually, he started taking power naps." He almost choked on his words becoming emotional. "Then he started to sleep the day away." His voice trembled. "I mean, Captain Kirk has a good memory that is fading but . . ." He cleared his throat. "You can hardly tell he is dying day by day."

"It's probably a phase," Cameron said. "Remember when Sulu went through this?"

Gilbert sighed.

"Of course," Gilbert said. "That lasted for two months. Then he rebounded, which was surprising, and resilient as ever. But then again it was the others who drew him out of it. And Chekov doing all sorts of things like . . ." Gilbert smiled, looking back. "Some of the stuff they did was pretty comforting."

Cameron raised her golden eyebrows.

"Is there more that I don't know?" Cameron asked.

"Not that you should be concerned about." Gilbert sat down into a chair. "Ever since that Vulcan came in, the captain's been like a supernova. Brighter. And well, he has been taking interest in my personal life and giving me dating advice. Me, getting dating advice, from the man who had gone against various women and ended up saving the day! That's just . . ."

"Unbelievable." Cameron said.

"Yeah!" Gilbert said.

"Are you taking his advice?" Cameron asked.

"For dates,yes, but not all of them. My boyfriend told me that he liked the massage." Gilbert said.

"I was about to say: old fashioned dating advice can rather not stirr well with the 24th century." Cameron said.

"I learned that the hard way with Evans." Gilbert had a small smile. "I . . . He has really gave me some advice. Helpful ones. And been there for the anxiety I had for some of my dates. I mean, being a human competing against a Orion male for a Andorian is hard enough. The captain's been the most patient and listening person I know. Besides the the sonic bath. . . he's all good for conversation."

"It's okay to care about the resident but you don't need to worry about it," Cameron said. "He will rebound. They always do."

Gilbert was not that convinced.

"What if he doesn't? What if he . . ." He was unable to finish the sentence. There was a long pause between them. Gilbert was scared, honest to god,of losing someone who he had gone to like. "He just finally came out of his shell!" He leaned forward as his eyes started to produce tears. Cameron came over to Gilbert putting a hand on his backside. A tear streaked down his cheek. "I . . . Ii. ." He closed his eyes in pain. "I don't know what to do."

"Let him enjoy life," Cameron said. "Just know that Jim didn't come out of his shell for nothing."

Gilbert looked over, tears coming down, his face a image of sorrow.

"It's all right to be scared, we are all on losing our first assigned resident." Cameron sat down alongside Gilbert into a chair. Gilbert crashed into her arms and cried.


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