Luring Jim out with the ozh'esta

Four times Spock started the ozh'esta when he lost track of Jim and the one time McCoy called him out on it

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5. Old and married

This story is dedicated to Deforest Kelley who brought to life a fascinating and stubborn doctor.

He dreamed of becoming a doctor, and he always shall be a doctor in Star Trek.

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"Scotty, what did you promise them?" McCoy asked, as he and the well aged Scottsman were in the corner of the house.

"That I would help them," Scotty said. McCoy stared at the man, exasperated.  

"Scotty, we are retired," McCoy said. "and we made a promise not to let  Jim stand on the bridge of another Enterprise," his eyes winced at the memory of Jim, through hologram, looking around the Enterprise B bridge appearing sad. Sadder than he had ever seen him. McCoy had gone without them as Jim had fallen sick. Spock stayed behind to take care of him. He remembered Captain  John Harriman's sacrifice to save his ship. A noble one. "And then spiral down a lane of depression."

"I know but. . ." Scotty looked over toward the retired admiral who was speaking with the little children with Mr Spock. His eyes grazed over toward the doctor. "they really need your help."

"How are we goin' to help them when we don not have a ship to take them to Betazed or Vulcan to deal with what emotional trauma they suffered?" McCoy asked. "these children have been pressed to be emotionless and ashamed of themselves, yanked from their families, lost their family, and if we do this. . ." he looked over from the corner of the doorway toward the children asking about Earth. He turned toward Scotty. "they may lose their parental figures."

"Aye," Scotty said, solemnly nodding. "but we can try. They will nae lose their parental figures."

"One of us is goin' to get killed," McCoy said,

"Lenny," Scotty said. "it is 2305. We are nae goin' tae get killed." McCoy sighed.

"All right, buttercup," McCoy said. "what  do you have in mind?"

"We sneak them out in the market," Scotty said. "My pal and I will clean the place up so they will nae suspect the children are here."

"Tell me they did not hire a bounty hunter," McCoy said, as his face grew long.

"We have tae be prepared," Scotty said.

". . . . Scotty," McCoy said.

"Nae sure," Scotty said. "we have tae be prepared for it."

"All right," McCoy said. "this is supposed to be our retirement and we still end up runnin' off Jim's insane luck to live."

"It is nae luck, Lenny," Scotty said. "ye a miracle worker."

McCoy came over to Spock who held his free hand out for the doctor. McCoy's palm met the Vulcan's hand and their fingers touched completing the el'ru'esta. The hand embrace between family and loved ones. McCoy sent his personal concern of this situation to the Vulcan. Spock lowered his hand. It had been forty years since they first bonded and Spock did not look a day older than what he looked like in 2285. It was almost as though age had become frozen when it did not for Jim. Jim had a rounded figure, grayed hair, and he still looked fifty. Not bad for a man his age. McCoy's hair had turned grayed but it wasn't a mess of wrinkles. He didn't look a day over the age he was in 2285.  Scotty's andorian friend, Jake Mallard, was securing them the vehicle to get away.

"I passed Mr Spock's test and we still did not meet then," Jim said.

"OOooh," The children gasped.

"Only part of a decade later," McCoy said. "good thin' you didn't meet or Spock and Jim would have been married from the first moment I stepped off that transported," Spock and Jim shared a glance together. "Admit it!" He gestured toward the men. "you would have gotten together sooner if Spock was not on a away mission with Captain Pike."

"Plausibly," Spock said. "we were different people back then."

"Heck," Jim said. "I am not the same man who entered the academy. A bunch of legs and a bookworm."

"Jim, you are not different," McCoy said. "you are still a bookworm."

"He is not all legs," Spock said, as the children were laughing. Scotty leaned against the wall watching the three older men reflecting on old times. "mostly . . ." Spock held his hands up with his finger bend inwards toward the palm of his hand. "squishy, soft, and muscular body."

Jim's cheeks were a shade of pink as he looked over toward McCoy.

"Are you any different, Bones?" Jim asked.

"Not at all," McCoy said.

"Is the kobyashi maru still there?" one of the children asked.

"The kobyashi maru," Spock said. "I doubt it is still in practice."

"It was a good one," Jim said.

"Until you bypassed it to talk the Klingons down into a cease fire and being extremely friendly with them," Spock said. "you changed the Kobyashi Maru."

"It was the logical thing to do," Jim said.

"That it is," McCoy said, sarcastically. "I failed it. Just like every ordinary cadet."

"Bones, you, in the command chair?" Jim asked.  ". . . No wonder you refused to take command of any ship."

"But you said you were in the navigational seat,"  Spock said.

"I didn't like it but I had to do it," McCoy said, with a shrug. "and that was a lie."

"What is space like?" a second child asked.

"It is big, vast, cold, and unforgivin'," McCoy said.
 
"Now Bones," Jim leaned forward then patted on the doctor's small, slender hand. "space isn't that way."

"Always has and always will be," McCoy said.

"It is fun," Spock said.

"More fun than being on the ground," Jim agreed, with a nod.

"Can people fly in space?" another child asked.

"In space suits," Spock said.

"With a jet pack," Jim said.

Jim, these days, was in colorful attire.

Sweaters, jackets, shirts, buttoned up shirts, and coats.

Jim's favorite winter coat was a blue one with a light blue furry hood. Spock liked the gray one made on Vulcan. McCoy, however, took the golden one because Jim and  Spock insisting that it looked better on him. It was the only thing that prevented Jim from going out into winter and protesting that he could withstand the cold at his age and rationalizing growing up in Riverside a place where it snowed. It was so long ago that they purchased the jackets. . . Almost a lifetime ago. Back in 2293, settling down in Riverside. The winter coats were still warm and fit them. Spock wore dark attire that fit his attempt at being 'mysterious', 'bland', and 'emotionally non emotional' that was quickly changed out by  McCoy for clothes that were in the nope department. Loud, bright clothes. It was decided that Spock wore dark clothes when it came to formal events or Star Fleet events. McCoy preferred long sleeve sweaters with a 'v' neck and a buttoned up underneath.

Frankly, it was easy to spot Jim and Spock together in a crowd.

But without each other, that was another story, and difficult to pinpoint where they were.

McCoy could play a 'where's Spock and Jim' game any day and win.

Every time.

"What was it like serving in space together?" Another child asked.

"Fun," Spock and Jim said at once.

"Do you want to hear the story where we accidentally came across Peter Taggart and his right hand man Dr Lazarus?" Jim asked, leaning forward.

"Me! Me! Me! Me!" the other children waved their hands.

"Whose Lazarus?" the children asked.

"There are two types of  Lazarus," Spock said. "one, the iconic real human being brought to life by Jesus Christ." The children were curious. "The second, a  hybrid doctor derived from the Mak'Tar Species who are real who in some retrospects are like Doctor McCoy and I merged into one person."

"But neither of us has a volvac sac," Jim said.

"Or eats blood beetles," McCoy said.

"Or has this weird toilet," Jim said.

"Or has unusual marks on his head and lacks hair," Spock said.

"Or has webbed toes," McCoy said.

"An aquatic creature with blue skin," Spock said.

"Blue blooded intelligent scientist and medical officer," McCoy added.

"Without pointy ears," Spock said.

"Quite a legendary man," Jim said. "rumors say that version was real."

"At least none of us became pregnant," McCoy grumbled.

"But we are uncles," Spock said. "weird old uncles."

"That is the part that counts," Jim said.

"Tell us the story!" The children said.

"Mr Spock, how about you do it," Jim said.

"You remember the most," McCoy said, with a nod.

"It was in 2293," Spock began. "we were on our way to Earth to return the USS Enterprise A when a wormhole dragged in the starship despite everything that was done to prevent it. We came across a unusual crew of humans pretending to be the legendary crew of the NSEA Protector. A NTE model, New Terra  Engineering. It was the best of its kind." the children were leaning forward. "The admiral communicated with the captain of the ship, Commander 'Taggart' who recognized the admiral as someone else. The doctor and I joined the Admiral at the transporter room to greet the away team. According to Earth  customs, we were greeted warmly. A fist on their chest and bowing their heads, which was unusual, but a unique greeting. There was an alarm raised when they saw me and that's when they raised their unique phaser devices except for Captain Taggart. They were cruising in space checking on a colony of Thermians and had thought that we were the  Thermians pretending to be their cast mates. Which was a fascinating event. Commander Taggart insisted they came in peace and were "actors" for "entertainment" of their homeworld. It turned out they came from Earth. They came from our past. We discovered that the live long and prosper sign was incorporated into their society but as "By Grabthar's hammer, may you live honorably"."

"That is cool," the shortest child said.

"But it was disturbin' to hear a story that we were told was true," McCoy said. "a entire planet. Needlessly destroyed. Makin' a endangered species come to bein'."

"It was not a cool hour then," Spock added, holding his two fingers out for both his husbands by both hands.

"The good part about it was that they had saved their planet and countless others," McCoy said, as Jim and he returned the gesture.

Scotty returned with a short, blue Andorian by his side.

"Allo!" Mallard said, with a smile.  Heads turned in his direction. "I got the air-car."

"I will continue in the car,"  Spock said.

"Up you go, little ones," Jim said, gesturing the children to their feet. "up, up, up, you go."

The children slowly got up in numbers then  made their way toward the exit. The three old men shared concerned looks. The children were hybrids of notable species: Romulan/Vulcan, Bajoran/Cardassian, Cardassian/Vulcan, Vulcan/betazoid, Vulcan/Andorian, and Vulcan/Klingon, and only two of them were humans with rounded green ears and arched eyebrows that could be mistaken to be slightly slanted. Jim could feel McCoy's concern for the bounty hunters coming in and gathering the children. 

"Mr Mallard," Jim said.

"Yes?" Mallard said, standing by the door.

"You have a  lot of guts to do what you are doing," Jim said.

"I am quite aware," Mallard said. "no one should turn children into test subjects. Not anyone."

"However you met Scotty, I am glad you did," Jim said, then he gave a smile.

"T'hy'la," Spock called. "etek nam-tor hal-tor."

"Coming!" Jim replied. "you should visit us one of these days. On Vulcan."

"I will make sure," Mallard said, with a nod. McCoy's laughter was heard.  Our camera panned to the large hovering van. The children were packing into the back end.

"What is funny, adun?" Spock asked.  McCoy stopped laughing.

". . . Uh Spock, ya just slipped back into Vulcan," McCoy said, with a pause in his laughter.

". . . I did not mean to do that," Spock said. "and it is not amusing."

"Ya are so used to verbally talkin' that you forgot to talk through the bond," McCoy said. "that is funny. Because ya haven't been usin' the bond lately due to your stressful Ambassador duties. Now that is the logic in it."  There was a pause.

"I see the humor in it," Spock said.

"Bet your ass there is," McCoy said, happily bouncing on his toes.

"There is a market place that has a place that allows people without passports tae get tae the shuttle port," Scotty said, as Jim slid into the front seat of the vehicle.  "ye'll need tae gae tae a tall Andorian who doesn't have his antenna and has a eye patch over his right eye. He has a goatee. He is at the strawberry stand. He will lead you and the hover-van tae the shuttle port."

"Why don't you do it, Scotty?" Jim asked,

"Someone has tae make sure they dae nae get on ye trail," Scotty said.

"I expect to see you at the next reunion," Jim said.

"Can't guarantee," Scotty said.

"What is his name?" Jim asked.

"Wbat Torka," Scotty said.

Scotty and Jim shook hands.

"I will see ye at the reunion," Scotty said.

"Take care, Scotty," Jim said, as their handshake ended with a smile.

The hover van driver side door opened with a swing of his leg underneath it. The door slid open. Spock and McCoy went to the driver side door. The children were covered by a large massive blanket as they were laid on the floor in fetal position. The men buckled themselves up. Jim turned the GPS on. The hologram of a head lacking hair but with a boyish and girly like look appeared. Crystal blue eyes that stood out more than the lips with a white necklace around their neck.  The doors to the vehicle were closed including the packed trunk.

"Directions please," the hologram said.

"The market," Jim said.

"Care to finish that story, Ambassador?" McCoy asked. "The children are dyin' to hear the end."

"How about you finish it, doctor?" Spock inquired.

"I am sorry but that away mission is foggy," McCoy said. "I do not recall."

"Something about synchronizing starships to our respective time and," Jim said. "that was very shady."

"But  the science behind it was questionable at best," Spock said.

"Mr Spock, finish the story," Jim said, looking over toward his husband.

"The doctor does remember," Spock said. Jim shook his head, bemused.

"No," McCoy said.

"Yes," Spock said.

"No," McCoy said.

"Yes," Spock said.

"No," McCoy said.

"No," Spock said.

"Yes--Spock!" McCoy stared at the smug Vulcan in disbelief. "I am not a credible story teller."

"You are a credible story teller," Spock said. McCoy pointedly glared at the Vulcan.

"You were at the part where we finished explainin' the Thermians rebound on New Thermia and still around to this day," McCoy said.

"Ah, yes," Spock said. "The crew were overjoyed."

"Really?" came one of the children at the back.

"Indeed," Spock began. "Nyota met her role model, Lieutenant Tawny, and we were subject to see the first inter-special relationship regarding Mr Chen and his wife Laliari who was given the name Jane Doe in reality. A fascinating revelation." The Vulcan cleared his throat. "Nyota and the actor who portrayed Tawny got along very well. Lazarus and I shared discussions regarding science, drama, and acting. We both shared a interest in it and stay in character when it came to it. The captain and the commander got along nicely and I was able to overhear the truth about the battle of Thermia." The Vulcan paused, deliberately, for dramatic effect. "Questarians had a large hand in saving Earth not just the crew of the Protector and the Thermians. In many ways, Galaxy Quest saved two species and united them. One of the security personnel recommended synchronizing the starships to their respective times and going through a wormhole in a unusual manner to send the other back. They had a good idea to send  the Enterprise back to her time without being picked up by satelites or the International Space Station. It was a logical solution to the problem despite there being chances of success and taking the Protector into the future. Captain Taggart's team was given a tour of the Enterprise before they were returned. They admired our starship and complimented it much to Mr Scotts glee. The other away team was sent back to the NSEA Protector."

"That is cool," another child said.

"Captain Taggart also signed a baseball hat for Jim," Spock said. "which is perfectly preserved in the museum for Science Fiction and The Impact It has in Iowa and the World," McCoy was leaned against Spock's shoulder taking a quick snooze. "Apparently, it accidentally left with Taggart and was found, again, by a archeologist. It was well worn but it had not been torn apart by time itself or destroyed which was remarkable. Jim's initials were in the back of it as JTK. No one knows that it belongs to the captain."

"And why haven't you gotten it back?" the same child asked.

"Because it's a testimonial to a event that happened," Jim said. "it is best that everyone believes it's a 21st century baseball hat than the present hat that went through hell," Jim looked over toward Spock.  "which I fortunate recall that we didn't go through hell the last time we spent time on Earth in the past."

"Admiral," Spock said. "you forget the time that the doctor was stranded in the past."

"Now that was hell," Jim said, bitterly as his thoughts went back to the woman.

Edith Keeler. Spock suspected that Jim and Edith Keeler were the same souls. The same person. He used to be the progressive woman. It was logical due to their characters. Even if her death could be avoided and the time stream could not be damaged, Jim would not exist and he would not be himself. The dynamic, but kind and compassionate man would essentially lose his soul in the process.  His entire character changing before everyone's eyes into a entirely different person. At least, theoretically. It disturbed Spock that  Jim fell for himself. Watching him fall for her over two weeks.

It was painful for Spock otherwise.

Jim was still not over the loss of the woman.

"What happened next?" the second child asked.

"As the captain said, we did not use the sun slinging method as we considered that we went into a different version of a world with Galaxy Quest," Spock said. "which we turned out to be wrong. The method was similar to one that appeared in  Galaxy Quest to merge both ships together into one." Spock twirled his finger into a circle. "With that we were transported back into our present after being launched into the worm hole," Spock paused, considering, how  the results afterwards were. "the Enterprise was subject to minor damage and engineer had its fair share of damage. The bridge was intact except for some panels were burned due to the wormhole being unstable at the time we went through it. The other ship was built for a wormhole the Enterprise, however, was not as it did not go on regular visits into a wormhole."

The hover-van came to a stop.

Jim poked his head out the rolled down window scanning for the figure that Scotty described.

"Jim, how about you and Spock go out then look for the next part of the railroad," McCoy said.

"Sometimes, doctor," Spock said. "you baffle me with your  wording." Spock held his two fingers out and McCoy's two fingers returned the gesture.

"That is not actually a bad idea," Jim said.

"Andorian with a eye patch and has a goatee at the strawberry stand," Spock said. "without antennas." The  sound of unbuckling was heard in the hover-van.

"We're ready to go then," Jim said, making his way out of the van. "and stay down."

"Why would anyone stand up in this vehicle?" McCoy asked, with disgust in his voice.

"Love you, too, Bones!" Jim said, as Spock followed him out. The man shut the door.

McCoy watched leaned against the window watching the two men vanish into the crowd. He could feel the flare of heated admiring coming from Jim and Spock's sappy thoughts but actually the feel of them through the bond slipping into Jim's part. McCoy mumbled closing his eyes attempting to enter sweet darkness. The sound of a squeak jerked him awake highly alarmed leaving the imprint of the side of his face on the window. He rubbed his eyes looking over hearing the children scolding each other. Children could not sit still. They should have been put in sitting down but wouldn't that leave not enough room for the eleven children? McCoy looked over then to the screen. The warmth and content from the bond had all but faded. All he felt was excitement through the bond. Jim, probably. And certainty, which was coming from Spock's end. He shifted from side to side trying to regain the position that allowed him to fall asleep in the first place. The doctor was annoyed.

McCoy looked at the time.

It had been thirty-three minutes since Jim and Spock left.

"Damn it,  y'all," McCoy said, annoyed. "how can searchin' for one person be difficult?"

"Did he just swear?" the same second child asked.

"No," McCoy said. "I did not. Got a problem with that?"

"Then what did you just say?" the third child asked.

"Dam," McCoy said, he wiped a tear off. Spock had been insisting that he visit his brother, Sybok, to help him get over the guilt of doing a mercy killing. Perhaps, he was right. The thought of his father, David, made him emotional. Fine, McCoy thought to himself, I will do it. "my pa's nickname."  

"Awww," the children whined.

"I will be right back," McCoy said, looking over toward the children. " Don't get wild in there."

He saw several pairs of eyes, the ones in the front, glaring through right at him. It became clear that they had reorganized themselves during the time that he had fallen asleep. He pressed  button underneath the screen which turned the windows to a pitch black color. McCoy laughed, getting out of the van. His foot got stuck trying to get out and he landed face first on the grass. McCoy rolled an eye. He then turned around, halfway up, and slid his foot out. Damn old age.  He heard the children laughing. McCoy got up then closed the vehicle with a loud smack. He made his way into the market seeing Vulcans among the crowd. Where was Jim and Spock? He didn't see them. He started to panic. Where the hell did they go? Ah, damn it, they had blended in.  There were pairings of Vulcans and humans standing side by side at the stations. McCoy put on his glasses to see everyone right that had a string that hooked along his ears.

McCly went forward looking around until he saw Spock, standing there, appearing lost.

"Nashaut," McCoy said, once he approached his husband. McCoy reached his hand out starting the el'ru'esta where their palms and fingers met. Spock's lost demeanor resolving into a calm, non-emotional yet familiar facial expression. He was recomposed to his usual, public attitude.

"Ashayam," Spock said, tilting his head.  "why are you here?"

"Children," McCoy said. "and it's been half an hour."

"Oh," Spock said. "I believe it has been forty-three minutes, doctor, not thirty."

"Why you pointy eared computer!" McCoy said. "daylight savin's time was eliminated last year."

"That  I was not aware," Spock said.

McCoy rubbed his forehead with a sigh then lowered his hand.

"Where is Jim?" McCoy asked.

"Over there," Spock gestured to a station, where Jim is not there.

"Spock," McCoy said. "use your ozh'esta signal."

Spock raised slanted, but baffled eyebrows.

"Hinek, the Vulcan kiss is not a signal," Spock said.

"Your very own Batman signal and you are denyin' it," McCoy said, sharing an eye roll. "Any time where ya lose track of Jim, you hold your two fingers out then your bondmate comes out of the wild and completes it."

Spock's eyebrows lowered.

"I do not believe that happens the way you say it does," Spock said, holding his two fingers out to his side

Jim popped out of the crowd completing the gesture.

"T'hy'la!" Jim said, gleefully.  "You will never guess what I found!"

"Oh look," McCoy said, with a bounce. McCoy had a bright smile and his eyes lit up in Spock's direction as his hands were behind his back. "your ozh'esta signal worked."

The End.

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Spock's final reply had to be edited as it felt off from the way I originally wrote and it just didn't fit to what he was saying. I hope you enjoyed this five times fic and had some laughs. dif-tor heh smusma.
 

Tal-kam t'nash-veh=my dear.

Adun=husband.

Etek nam-tor hal-tor=we are go.

Taluhk nash-veh k'du= I cherish you.

Ashalik=darling.

Taluhk etek du=we cherish you.

K'diwa t'nash-veh=my beloved.

Hinek=bones.

Ashayam=beloved, a beloved person.

Nashaut=hello, hi.

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