When Spock's vision returned,he forgot what had happened earlier. It was odd. He was on a bed feeling like he had been exhausted and his energy levels had gone down. He heard the door to the quarters open. It was a rather annoyed, but frustrating sigh that followed afterwards including a groan which he recognized as Leonard's. Spock turned himself over while rubbing the sides of his shoulder.
"Leonard, where are we?" Spock inquired.
"On The Nimoy," McCoy said. "Warm, hot chocolate."
". . . Why?" Spock asked.
"Your daughter." McCoy said.,
"What about my daughter?" Spock inquired.
McCoy looked at him, alarmed, hand reached out for the solidifying glass.
"You have short term memory loss not lon' term memory loss." McCoy said.
"I do?" Spock said.
"Yes, you do." McCoy said. "S'chess has agreed to speak with me . . . just without you." He took another sip from the drink. "You may have, er,uhm,without intendin' to. . . er. . . um. . . insulted his mother."
"I would not do such thing." Spock said.
"Well,you were on a roll, and you were pretty much bein' savage on you after he insulted your father." McCoy said.
"He deserved it then." Spock said, straightening himself up from the bed.
"What was he like?" McCoy asked.
Spock raised the eyebrow.
"Sarek?" Spock asked.
"Yes." McCoy said.
"He was. . .." Spock started. "For marrying my mother, surprisingly emotional though he never showed it in public I can only assume he would be. There was this one time I landed in the mirror verse and my father. His affection was very private but public." He raised his head up. "He was inquiring how my resistance was going--,well, he started but he stopped when he saw me. I never seen him that pleased before."
McCoy's eyes raised.
"Did he have a beard?" McCoy asked. "Gray one with a dagger?"
"Affirmative," Spock said. "Heavy layered . . And so did my mother, they were armed and dangerous."
"I think I may have come across that Sarek in my travels." McCoy said.
"That is impossible," Spock said. "Star Fleet would have known."
"He had a strong family resemblance," McCoy took another sip. "He had a child. His name was Junior. Somethin' like that." He blew the steam off the cup. "Your mother, well, she was a beauty. I was treatin' their son for a biological contagion that somehow got inflicted on him. They were fiercely protective over him."
"Very them." Spock said.
"I think we became neighbors for a few years," McCoy went on. "I had to teach them not everyone was out to kill them and their son. No need for random assassinations." McCoy shuddered. "The padd work was terrible when they did."
Spock had a soft laugh.
"I do not find it difficult to believe that." Spock said.
"They never went back home, you know." McCoy said.
"How do you know?" Spock
McCoy came over with the hot chocolate then took out a padd from his pocket.
"This." McCoy handed it to Spock.
Spock slid the dafault screen off. He paused, looking on to see a young Vulcan who looked similar to him holding a award in her hands grinning from ear to ear with Sarek and Amanda behind her. Sarek wore heavy clothes unlike Amana who wore light weighted clothing. They looked considerably older. Amanda was happy in the photo with completely gray hair. Spock traced along the photograph with his fingers feeling emotions circulating through his mind. They sat together in silence. Spock slid the screen to see another photo but of Amanda, younger, holding a newborn Vulcan in her arms. Sarek was smiling in the photo looking down upon the young one. They were in a white scenery.
"I always took it with me wherever I went because someone had to vouch as their doctor and be on their file." McCoy said. "And as proof that I have been makin' sure they have been followin' my orders of bein' healthy and stayin' out of trouble." McCoy looked over to see that Spock was getting emotional so he placed a hand on the vulcan's hand sending back feelings of comfort and consolation.
They were sitting together for a good hour, in silence. McCoy did finish his drink then put it into the dispenser. McCoy had his concerns about the family when he lived next door to them on Starbase 1. They were most commonly seen in sick bay mostly with Sarek who was getting adjusted to the vast differences. Amanda was enjoying this reality,immensely,but scared of the nurses. She had seen McCoy in his recuperating time from exploring space due to the trauma he had suffered. They bonded over fear of space in general. And they did like each other, only as friends, though. McCoy placed a hand on Spock's shoulder, "I wll give it another go to explain our situation regardin' your daughter."
"What about her?" Spock inuqired.
"She will undergo Kolinahr." McC0oy said.
Spock was silent.
"We'll make it." McCoy said. "I promise you that." He squeezed the Vulcan's shoulder then let go. "I will be right back in thirty minutes," McCoy paused on second thought. "Hopefully."
McCoy left the room. He could see the halls were a shade of peach and well lit. There were windows that showed outerspace floating outside. McCoy came to stop, just to pause, at the planet in the distance. There it was, Aura, in her natural orbit right beside her neighboring planet Scortch. She looked so small from the distance. McCoy sighed turning his head away. He had left a note for Nurse Pallet to know why they had left but not the means how they left. He headed down the hall where he could see a Klingon female and a Andorian female huddled together speaking in Klingon. They were not in star fleet approved uniforms but in a unique suit that reminded McCoy of the earlier models. The blue shirts with a turtle neck and long sleeves back in the 2250's.
He continued his way then took a turn to the left where there were several Ferengi towing a large unusual alien being on a crate down the hall that had a strange, huge, square mouth that looked like the stuff of nightmares. McCoy ducked then waited for the small crowd to pass him. He watched the feet pass him as the object went over him. As the Ferengi passed him,McCoy had a relieved sigh. He resumed his path. At least he never came across that in his travels. But why were they transporting strange alien beings on a starship? Unless they were smuggling. It was a pirate ship,no, maybe, he couldn't be sure. He made it into a rather room through the doors that opened before him. It wasn't his concern what they dealt with. There were the senior officers at the table that was rounded and seemed to be very awful in design. The chairs were oddly shaped like a grand council meeting from a 21st century movie. He sat into the empty chair facing the group.
"Now," S'Chess said. "What is it that you want?"
"We need passage to the Enterprise E," McCoy said. "Scotty said you are the fastest ship that can get there in the quadrant."
"We are not a taxi service, Doctor McCoy," S'Chess said. "And we do not provide service to the Enterprise E for illegal consummation. If we tried it would take three days to get there."
"You big fat liar." McCoy said, earning glares and silence
"Pardon your language!" Mr Green said. "That is not what you should say to your host."
"It's the truth, besides, Scotty told me you can get anywhere you want with transwarp installed." McCoy said, glaring in the direction of the black Romulan. "He's the one who reluctantly helped you construct it fo your stolen starship."
"But I made it." The Ferengi engineer, Marek, had commented. "It's not transwarp approved." He folded his arms. "I tinker with it and fix it when it goes down when we least expect it. I have the map for it."
"Indeed." S'Chess said.
"You can't map out a transwarp engine." McCoy said. "And besides, if you don't get there, you are goin' to be partially responsible for the zombiefied demise of a human bein'." He stood up. "And Spock is breaking apart because of that. You initial refusal just set him back! I just lied to him about your insult just to keep his hopes upp." He shook his hand. "I don't like lyin' to Spock that way."
"Doctor, we can drop you off at Vulcan." S'Chess offered.
"We don't want to go to Vulcan." McCoy said, putting his hands on the table. "Haven't you seen how Spock looks?"
"I am the medical officer of the ship and he looks fine." Doctor Smart said.
"You only dealt with Romulan physiology," McCoy's hands were trembling. "Not the emotions of a hybrid."
"If he is falling apart because of his emotions then shouldn't he control them better?" Smart asked.
"He would," McCoy said, slowly, and softly then he yelled, "BUT HE CAN'T." startling Smart and Marek but not Security officer Green, S'chess, and the female first officer who appeared to be a beastazoid. "You owe Scotty a favor, Captain S'Chess." The last part came out bitter and resentment. "If you won't take us to the starship then we're stayin' and we are not leavin' your ship of bolts and garbage."
"Is that really how you think you get your way by insulting my ship?" S'Chess inquired.
"No, she is not." Marek said.
"I am tellin' you the truth," McCoy said, glaring back at the Romulan in the eye. "This starship is as old as me." He pointed toward the floor. "I was on her to a planet side assignment. And she looks like she is breakin' apart like you are, sir, with all due respect. You should get a team of mechanics to repair her. She can't walk around in duct tape. Those days are lon' over." McCoy leaned back. "Spock will probably die on your ship."
"No, he won't!" Smart said.
"He is on his last leg, nearly, but this will be the last straw because how upset he is regarding his daughter," McCoy said. "It breaks my heart that I have to do this. . . but there are certain thin's a doctor got to do for his patient."
"You do realize I can force you off this ship." S'Chess said.
"Mr S'Chess," McCoy said. "I have taken defensive classes. And I take no shit."
"I will have your friend and you taken back to aura." S'Chess said, nodding toward the female first officer.
McCoy sat down into the chair then put his feet on the table earning looks of shock.
"Is that not alarming you?" S'Chess asked.
"Mr McCoy." Byanne, the first officer, came to the doctors side.
"I am not goin' to argue with you. But do consider my request before sendin' some pirates to Spock's room before a certain someone passes." McCoy said, fiddling with his thumbs. "If Spock dies upon before we get to the transporter room then I will have no choice but to tell Scotty."
"What is he going to do?" Byanne asked. "Lecture us about the complexities of engineering?"
"Actually," Marek said, holding up his index finger. "I would not mind a lecture from the man who made that alien warp engine."
"No, worse," McCoy said. "I think he'll get you stranded in another quadrant for the rest of your lives. Remotely."
"Still worth it." Marek said.
"Mr Scott is not likely to be still around all these years." Byanne said.
"Believe me, he has not slow down a day," McCoy slid the ring off onto the table. "He gave it to me."
S'Chess caught the ring on the edge of the table with his fingers.
"You want to be taken to the Enterprise E?" S'Chess asked.
"Yes." McCoy said.
"We can't GPS them," S'Chess said. "We are not that kind of service." He slipped it back to the doctor. "At all."
"GPS?" McCoy asked, with a raised eyebrow.
"It's the captain's way of saying pin-point." Smart said. "He speaks with 21st century words."
Byanne had returned to her chair then shared a look with the captain of the vessel. There were eyebrows being raised, some of them lowered, glares ranging in type, and long stares in the silence in the group. McCoy could spot a nearby Deltan was working on a padd being incredibly silent and not engaging within the group. He noticed there was a scar alongside the ear in the shape of a 'c'. He didn't wear decorative jewelry. McCoy had seen his fair share of Deltans and sometimes, just sometimes, just seeing their bald heads gave the impression they were naked at first before realizing they were dressed. It irked him to work with them because of that. All he had to do back in his hayday was not stare at their heads or distract himself. The Deltans found that hilarious after word got out. Somehow it slipped. McCoy noticed the slender neck of the male, the rounded boxed shoulder padd that normally was seen on Romulans civilian wear, the square jaw, and the his waist to his hips were thin. Thin as a woman. And damn did he look attractive.
The Deltan was likely jotting down the conversation word by word even though it wasn't being spoken. A captain's loyalty was something that was evident in most crew. And the crew loyalty, that's the heart of the ship. The young Deltan man licked his lips then puckered them as he frowned. McCoy turned his head away slipping the ring into his pocket. Byanne and S'Chess then switched to verbal speaking,speaking in hushed but whispers that sounded like an argument. He couldn't exactly hear the points both were making. McCoy had been starting to lose his hearing.
The two turned back in the direction of the doctor.
"Transwarp doesn't get you there instantly," S'Chess said. "Much like warp, it take time to get there."
"And Scotty said Transwarp takes many short cuts." McCoy said.
"It's the truth." S'chess said.
"Affirmative." Marek said.
"Warp Drive is nothing like Improbability drive," Byanne said. "There are no doors to go through."
"I find that hard to believe." McCoy said. "I'll come back in an hour when you kids have made your decision."
"We are not children." Byanne said, standing up from the chair once more. "We would greatly appreciate you referring to us adults."
"Over my dead body." McCoy said, then he walked himself out of the conference room.
It was fantastic that they were assigned temporary quarters on the same floor as the conference room. McCoy was not sure if Scotty could remotely send a transwarp drive into overdrive. It was a bluff. A very, hollow empty bluff that lacked weight. McCoy came to a stop then rubbed his knees feeling them ache. How long had they been aching? His fingers felt stiff to move. The hot chocolate was to see if they did ache despite the temperature in the room. Knowing Vulcan temperature preference did wonders for him, for example, taking care of Spock. He had arthritis before arriving to Aura, where it made him forget the pain (or as it seemed to him, it became numbed), it was difficult to live with it. McCoy heard from official medical channels that they were still trying to find a way to cure arthritis. The doctor took a sigh then straightened himself taking his hand off the wall.
"Mr?" Came a female emotionless voice. "Oh," McCoy looked up to see a female Vulcan. She lacked the eyebrows but the ears were there. McCoy could see a ridge where the slanted eyebrows pointed up that were not there. It was not like a Romulan's recognizable facial features. "Admiral McCoy." She was in a black and blue uniform that had patches with different shades of black sewed back in seamlessly. "Are you okay?"
"Fine." McCoy said. "What kind of hair style do you have? Never seen it before."
The Vulcan patted her horned black hair right one free hand.
"The horned bell." The Vulcan said. "I have been . . . " She paused, looking down toward the padd in her hand, fiddling with her foot on the floor then back up toward the doctor. "Insisting my stylist work out the kinks in it."
"I never heard of that hair style," McCoy said. "It looks great on you."
"Doctor," The Vulcan said. "I have read about the brain grafting procedure you did. Your courage and determination is remarkable."
"It comes naturally," McCoy said. "Excuse me, ma'am."
McCoy went past the Vulcan.
"Have a good day, sir." The Vulcan said, half turned in the doctors direction.
McCoy took a turn at the corner of the hall. McCoy looked around as he walked. He could see the colors of the USS Nimoy were duller and not as lively as the various other Constitution class counterparts. The ceiling had wires dangling carelessly over his head. If he were six foot six and a century younger, he would be hit repeatedly by the large circuits which would end up with him ducking. Thank the great bird of the galaxy that he was not that tall. McCoy came to the door of the shared quarters then inputted the code in. The doors opened before McCoy into a not-as-hot-as-earlier-left-it earlier bedroom. McCoy blinked, considering who could change the temperature. Feeling the cold lash against against his skin. Spock could but that would be ill--
"Spock?" McCoy softly said, noticing the younger male was on the bed as he slowly approached the bed. Spock's clothes were scattered on the floor and the padd was on the table. He could see the bed sheet was not over the Vulcan's naked green, thin but bony body laid on the bed turned away from McCoy "Why did you turn the temperature down?" He came closer and closer to the bed. "Computer, raise temperature up by twenty-five degrees."
"Leonard . . ." Spock's voice sounded shaky. "I am cold."
"You were being unreasonable turning the temperature down," McCoy said, sitting on the edge of the bed. "The hotter the better in your case." He could feel the temperature rising in the room. "You are adapted to hotter climates."
"I feel cold all over." Spock said.
"Why did you strip yourself?" McCoy asked.
"I--i---i-i-i--i-i----it felt like baggage." Spock admitted.
"I know we haven't done this since you came. . . what about a cuddle?"McCoy said.
"A cuddle, meant for affection, and comfort." Spock said.
"And warmth." McCoy said.
"T--t--that is illogical." Spock said.
"Look, Ambassador,it warms you up." McCoy placed a hand on the Vulcan's shoulder feeling the skin felt icy to the touch. "Remember the last time I did and how I didn't like it because it was unconventional for me?"
"Y-y-y-y-you did not like it." Spock said, with a shiver.
"Because it wasn't logical." McCoy said, taking his hand off the Vulcan's shoulder.
"N-n-n-n-n-nothing is logical." Spock replied.
"Say, tell me, how did you survive your latest pon farr without a mate?" McCoy asked.
"I-i-i-i-i I used the holodeck." Spock said.
"You basically used a Vulcan porn to save yourself." McCoy said.
"It was only reasonable." Spock said.
"And the Vulcans insist they don't use it." McCoy snickered. "Spock. . . You know people cuddle together to keep themselves warm? I once was trapped on a arctic climate with a group of nurses durin' a ion storm. That night durin' campin', they huddled around me." McCoy slid his shirt off then placed it by the bed. The doctor took his pants off. Might as well get comfortable, but leave the boxers on. "We never talk about that day because we had to kill a unusual squirrel like animal and cook it."
"W-w-w-w-w--w-what did it taste like?" Spock inquired.
"Like fish." McCoy said. "Without spice, it was bland and disgustin'. I became a vegatarian afterwards."
"V-v-v-v-v--vegetarians do not divert from their salad food for steak every few weeks." Spock countered. "It is uncharacteristic of them."
"Who'se to say we can't dip our feet into the vegetarian diet?" McCoy said.
"Vegetarians cannot eat meat." Spock said.
"Like Vulcans." McCoy said. "Say, what year is it?"
"I-i-i-i-i-i-I am not sure." Spock said.
McCoy kept his socks on then came onto the side of the bed where it sank. At least it was not a water bed. McCoy hated them. It wasn't great for the back to be on a fluid moving surface for more than ten hours per day. You are doin' this for Spock, McCoy reminded himself, just to warm him up. It was what someone who cared for another would do. Sure, the naked cuddle was often used as plot devices in cheap romantic movies. McCoy cleared his throat. Sure, he was not a expert in this department. It had been years since he willingly cuddled with anyone such as Jocelyn in bed. Sometimes, he did with Joanna on the couch (It continued onwards until she was an adult. She never grew out of the habit) and her son Andrew McCoy on the other side leaned against his shoulder. It brought back memories of cuddles with family and those he cared about dearly. Spock was losing his memory and there was nothing McCoy could do about that right now. It made McCoy feel helpless and powerless. McCoy wrapped his free hand around Spock's chest and brought him closer. McCoy could feel Spock's heartbeat from his torso.
"You know what's not logical about kangaroo rats?" McCoy asked.
"Legs." Spock mumbled.
"No, they don't have pouches," McCoy said. "And ethnically, if you are goin' to name a critter after a kangroo, shouldn't they have a pouch?" McCoy wanted to make this cuddle memorable for Spock. It was a random subject of all things. "Did you know scientists are studyin' what the effects of humanity would have been if there were a nuclear war and it changed everyone? I got that from reader's digest."
"Shawk, go to sleep." Spock said.
"Pointy ears and no slanted eyebrows, or, there bein' drawves," McCoy said. "Short humans."
"Yes, there are short Vulcans in your class. . ." Spock said, then he drifted off.
He could hear a purr coming from Spock. If he had a tail, McCoy assumed Spock's would be flickering from side to side. Naturally, he would bat at it away flustered and startled then after getting adjusted slowly started to pet it. More random things have happened to the good country doctor before. He was aware that making suggestions to one as they fell asleep made implementations into their dreams. McCoy could feel the allure of sleep and his eyes were getting heavy again. McCoy felt warmth traveling from is heart to his head. McCoy closed his eyes with a smile using his free hand to trace the Vulcan's green backside where he could see the shoulder blades. Scientifically speaking, he was sharing his body heat with the Vulcan to keep him warm. And it was more consensual than the last one.
"Erin. . . Put down that badger." Spock mumbled in his sleep.
Spock was all ready having a illogical dream, and that concerned Spock.
"It's goin' to be all right, Spock," McCoy said, placing one hand on to the Vulcan's thick, but long shoulder. "You are not alone."
Then McCoy closed his eyes and allowed the darkness to claim into comfort.