WARNING: This chapter is pretty graphic when it comes to the Klingons. The rest of the chapters won't be like it, but if you're squeamish, then watch out! :D
Hope you enjoy! This will be around 3-5 chapters long.
6 months after Jim become Captain of the Enterprise.
"I can't believe you, Jim," McCoy grumbled, forcefully yanking a hypospray out of the tray purposefully to make it clatter, "I'm sick of chasing you around the damn ship like a seven-year-old," he jammed the device into the man's forearm, taking silent pleasure in the elicited screech.
"Because you keep doing that!" Jim yelled, clutching his arm as if McCoy had yanked it off.
"Maybe if you didn't turn up 4 weeks late to your physicals I would actually be a little nicer," he picked up the second hypo of the three and tauntingly held it above Jim's face, "Maybe this will teach you to act like a Captain—" he slammed the plunger into the blonde's already pulsing forearm again, smiling when Jim protectively wrapped his hand around it.
"Stop fucking doing that!" Jim yelled, not taking his hand away from his arm this time, "You're supposed to be a doctor but you're making it hurt!"
Bones snorted, twiddling the final hypo between his finger and thumb, spinning it around while thinking of another place he could slam it into. Boy, he could think of several.
"Don't be such an infant. Ever since I agreed to stay on this death trap, you're the worst patient I've ever come across," he said moving to jab the hypo into Jim's neck but the man jolted and scurried back on the bed.
"Didn't you say doctor's were the worst patients?" Jim's voice was a little bit too high, his pupils blown wide and glued to the device, avoiding it like the plague.
"Yeah, but you're starting to challenge that," he reached out to grab Jim's head only to be suddenly wrenched away with a sweating hand.
"Don't." Jim demanded.
McCoy was about to lecture him about who was in charge here, only to get a good look at Jim's face, beginning to realise the body language he was expressing.
His arms were both raised almost in a protective manner, as if defending himself from McCoy. He hadn't ever done that before, and he had never come across it on the Enterprise.
He frowned, and analysed closer. The fact that Jim's pupils were blown wide was something that he had dismissed—that, along with the protective manner and pale trembling skin sent up red flags across McCoy's medical mind.
He lowered his hypospray for a second and looked Jim in the eye.
"You feelin' okay?"
If he didn't know any better, it seemed that the kid was about to work himself into a panic attack.
It was just a damn hypospray. What grown man in control of a Starfleet flagship works himself into a panic attack over a little hypo?
"Just—don't," Jim reacted quickly, the words forced and trembling.
"Is it the hypo?" usually the way to calm panic attacks would be to use hypos. Using a hypo to calm a panic attack about hypos was probably going to be counterproductive.
Alas, Jim nodded wordlessly.
"Alright," McCoy said slowly, placing the hypo on the instrument tray beside him and trying to think back to his training. How would you calm someone if the medicine is the problem?
Both men stared at each other for a long stretch of time, McCoy just watching him carefully and reading every expression, while Jim just sat rigid on the biobed, unmoving.
Eventually, his dementor dropped, his shoulders slumped, and Jim just dropped his gaze to the blanket, ashamed.
Simultaneously, the vital monitors displaying his heart-rate and blood pressure was beginning drop back down to normal levels.
McCoy scowled, deciding to try again with this extremely quick and simple vaccine, picking up the hypo— only for the monitors to instantly shoot up again, like a switch.
Jim's body once again went rigid, his fingers clawing at the bed, a feat McCoy hadn't ever seen before.
McCoy dropped the hypo back on the tray again and sighed.
"Christ, Jim," he muttered, swallowing hard against the feeling of guilt when he saw the expression on the captain's face.
"I can't do it," Jim nearly croaked, his pupils still huge as if face-to-face with certain death, "Don't do it."
McCoy shook his head, "You can't go down to Fardabos without the vaccine, Jim. You're allergic to the air pollution."
Jim nearly choked out a sob and shook his head desperately, "Don't care. I'll stay here. Don't do it."
Furrowing his eyebrows, McCoy nodded absentmindedly and began looking through the tray for other instruments he could somehow use to deliver the medication instead.
"Is it jus' the hypos?" he asked, hardly paying attention while sifting through the many metal objects.
Jim's voice was a little shaky as he hummed in acknowledgement.
Finally, McCoy pulled out a simple IV kit, deciding that the extra effort would be worth it if Jim allowed him to give him what he needed.
"It's a little stupid to deliver one shot through an IV, but if it gets you down there, then whatever," he grumbled, taking the hypo and connecting it to the tube, "Lie back for a sec,"
Jim still seemed apprehensive, but obeyed and lay down flat. There was a look of rock-hard determination on his face, as if having realised how stupid he was being and was determined to get this over with.
He took the end of the IV's needle and grasped Jim's hand in another. As he was about to poke it in his vein, Jim looked down at him and instantly repelled, trying to tug his hand away, but McCoy wasn't going to fend off something stupid like this.
"Just relax. For the love of god, this is nothing," he grumbled, trying to concentrate on where to poke him what with his hand shaking from Jim's violent tugging.
"Don't—" Jim breathed, and Bones could hear him hyperventilating, "Stop. Don't—don't—don't—don't—no. No. No. No. No. No! No. No! No! No! No! NO!"
"Alright!" McCoy yelled, giving up and dropping the equipment down, "Oh, shit," he didn't realise how bad Jim was coping until he had a look at his face.
"Alright—hey, hey, hey," he muttered, placing both hands below Jim's collarbones and gently pressing him down, "Hey—hey—breathe, kid, breathe. S'alright. I won't do it. I won't do it, I swear. Alright? Calm down. God damn it…"
Something had obviously happened, he thought to himself.
Something had happened to make him react this badly.
Jim was practically vibrating against the bed, his feet and hands twitching, undoubtedly from having an anxiety attack.
"I can't do it," Jim repeated again, "Don't make me."
McCoy breathed heavily, "I won't. I won't do it," he soothed, moving one hand away from his chest to discreetly push the trolley cart away, sparing a glance at the monitors. He bit his lip.
"Okay, you're breathin' way too damn fast, you gotta slow down," he ordered, looking around the room for any inspiration. He couldn't use a hypo—the solution to all his problems.
Think, McCoy, think.
"Okay…okay…copy me, okay?" he told him, taking in a slow deep breath and hoping for the best, "Breathe in real slow and deep, with me," he watched Jim try to copy him, but it was shakier and stuttering more than a real breath, "Okay, again, but out this time. In and out, real slow."
It seemed like hours before Jim actually began to develop a calmer rhythm of his own, the longer stretches of silence between each beep on the biobed monitor alerting McCoy that he was breathing slower.
He allowed Jim to just sit in contemplative silence for a while, rubbing his chin with his hand and trying to think of a way around this.
Jim wanted to go down to Fardabos, it was the nearest paradise, barring the slight air pollution. The quicker they got to a paradise the more shore leave they'd have. And knowing Jim, he'd stay up here on this death trap of a ship just so that the rest of his crew could have a good time below.
"Jim, why the hell are you so deathly afraid of hypos?"
Jim gazed up at him, opened his mouth to say something, paused, then just grunted, frowning as his gaze dropped to the blankets.
"It's stupid," the man finally said. The first coherent, intellectual word McCoy heard from him in a while.
"Oh yeah? Why's that?"
He was expecting it to be something like I accidentally jabbed myself with it as a child and now I'm traumatised. But, what left his mouth would probably make McCoy traumatised instead.
"When I was rescued from Tarsus, at 13, I was…rebelling, uh…" Jim paused, then started fiddling with the bed sheets, "I was transferred to a hospital from malnutrition, I fought against them 'cos I thought they were working with Kodos, and they just, didn't like me, I guess."
McCoy folded his arms, "Didn't like you?" he tried to ignore the fact Jim was suggesting he was one of the Tarsus nine survivors.
"Uh…I wouldn't let them, so to 'save my life' they restrained me to a bed for three days and kept poking hypos and IV's in me. I recovered, of course, and left fine," he paused again, his fingers scrunching up the sheets, "I just…I can't have them near me now. It's weird and stupid, I know."
Well, that explained a lot.
It also explained why Jim would return back to their dorm from a physical in the academy more exhausted and sometimes red-eyed and puffy than when he left. He had assumed he got into more fights, which was common.
"Well…" McCoy took in a breath, deciding he'd leave his questions about Tarsus for later in the day, "It seems we have a problem then, Jim. Physicals are mandatory every month, after every away mission, and you need a vaccine almost every time before you go down to a new planet."
Jim nodded solemnly, assumingly also thought about that himself already.
"Do you trust me?"
Jim stopped frowning at his legs and gazed up at McCoy, "Yeah, 'course I do, Bones."
He smiled gently, "Then let me give you this one shot. You know I won't hurt ya."
Jim fidgeted, taking in another shuddering breath…breathed out again…another shuddering inhale…and out again…then looked back up at him and nodded.
"Yeah?" McCoy asked hopefully, stepping backwards towards the trolley and detaching the hypo from the IV, "I'll be real quick, and I'll do it gentle this time."
Jim snorted, "You better." His voice was quiet and distant.
Returning to his patient's side, McCoy decided it was best Jim continued laying down, and pointed at the door, "Stare at the door like you can't wait to walk out of it."
Jim smirked, turning his head towards the door, and before a single thought could run through his mind, McCoy grabbed Jim's arm and pressed the hypo to it, depressing its contents immediately upon contact. He felt his patient's body go rigid instantly. Jim was holding his breath.
McCoy removed the hypo and tossed it back on the tray.
"There ya go," he chided, giving Jim a light pat on the arm, "All done. Wasn't that bad, you infant."
Jim forced a smirk on his face, his arms still rigid and breathing heavy, "Didn't know you could do it that lightly, Bones."
McCoy snorted, "Only for you, goddammit," he was relieved to see the vitals were dropping back to normal levels, "You little shit."
Jim smiled and took in another deep breath, closing his eyes for a second.
"I'm making it an order that you are to be my only doctor."
"You're makin' me deal with you alone? You bastard."
Jim snorted, sitting up from the biobed and sighing.
"Now don't get yourself killed on shore leave, idiot," McCoy chorded, gesturing to the door and beginning to reset the biobed.
Jim threw his hands in the air on his way out, "When do I ever?"
Bones rolled his eyes. "What a goddamn infant."
3 years later.
What Jim wouldn't give right now to have Bones with him.
He was currently on a Klingon ship, in the middle in the neutral zone. As an 'ambassador of Starfleet'.
"Y'know, maybe you should take this up with the Federation's admirals instead of me, I'm just a ship Captain," Jim explained, knowing the Klingons would never accept defeat, sprouting some crap about their 'honour'.
"Captain Kirk," a very armoured Klingon approached him, "I have a feeling your…Federation…would not listen to us in the way that you do."
Another Klingon approached beside him before Jim could get a word in, "We know about your tendencies, Captain, we would demand that you listen to us."
Jim frowned, "You mentioned war. Why? We haven't made any contact with your race since back on Kronos."
The call from this Klingon ship came seemingly out of no-where back on the Enterprise, requesting for an immediate imperative meeting.
"We would like to start a war with your Federation so that we may claim more land for the Klingon Empire."
And this was all that came from it.
Jim couldn't help himself from snorting, "That's all very well and good but couldn't you just search elsewhere? There's a vast amount of just this galaxy we haven't explored yet, why not just take over that one?"
Instantaneously, the entire auditorium burst into loud gruff laughter, and Jim would've groaned if it wasn't for his diplomatic training.
"We do not want to find new land, Captain Kirk. We would like to take over yours."
He sighed. Might as well play this out until his crew realise he hasn't checked in for a long time and just beamed him out.
"And why's that? Searching for something else yourself too much hard work?"
Jim choked against the hand suddenly wrapped around his neck.
"Do not underestimate our race, Captain Kirk," the Klingon was nose to nose with him, hissing threateningly. "We do not take kindly to those that belittle our honour."
What honour? Jim wanted to say, but didn't.
"O…kay, so let's say that we agree to go to war with you, then what?"
The Klingon's grip around Jim's neck grew tighter, and ultimately realised he could no longer breathe.
"We are not asking to go to war. We will go to war. And we need more soldiers than we have."
Well, what were they going to do? Pop out little Klingons and wait 30 years for them to grow up?
Images of 10-year-old angry Klingons trying to raid his ship in the name of honour nearly made Jim laugh if it wasn't for the fact he was choking.
"Listen to me, and listen to me good, Captain Kirk," the Klingon from behind him walked up to them both, watching the guy that had him in chokehold. "Release him, we need him alive."
There was a grunt, then the hand was released.
He sucked in a breath, closing his eyes and nearly buckling under his legs, forcing himself to stay upright for the sake of dignity.
"…Yeah?" he choked, taking a deep breath and testing his newly bruised throat.
"A Klingon Starfleet Captain would be a great asset to us. Knowing all of your Federation secrets and fighting with us in the war. You can bring us more allies to defeat you. We will be victorious. You will be our Chancellor."
"You're just expecting me to side with you?" that was ridiculous. They must know that he was sworn by oath, especially as a Captain, to never give up any of Starfleet secrets, never mind fighting alongside their enemies.
"You will have no choice."
He laughed, "So, I'm a hostage? Alright then." He was suddenly very glad he came up with the protocol for beam out with his crew he didn't check in after an hour.
The Klingon that previously had straggled him rammed him up against the wall, "You petaQ," he spat, "Speak to our leader as if he is of importance."
"BIjatlh e yImev, Dakiz," the other Klingon scorned, smacking him on the shoulder. The hand forcing Jim's chest into the wall was roughly removed.
The supposed leader stared at Jim for a few seconds before grunting something under his breath and stomping away.
Jim turned his head back to his attacker before the other Klingon spoke up again behind him.
"HIghoS, Captain Kirk."
Jim turned towards him, "What?" apparently the universal translator wasn't exactly functioning.
The attacker spat inches away from Jim. "He says to follow him."
"Oh, right," he blinked, but did as told, deciding he might as well follow protocol.
Jim was led out of the auditorium by the proclaimed leader, and into another darker room.
The room smelt damp, the flooring tiled with cracked concrete and dirt. It was an odd thing to see, considering they were on a ship in space.
A wooden table sat in the middle of the room, surrounded by multiple trays of what he assumed were supposed to be torture instruments.
Not this again.
Jim noticed a large circular metal object hanging on the ceiling, a fissure running down the middle of it, allowing for the device to be opened and for something to come through.
He turned to the leader and put on his best captain face, "You're going to torture me until I blurt out Starfleet's secrets? Y'know, that's been done before a few years back with Christopher Pike, but that was with the Romulans and that didn't turn out so well for them—"
"Quiet, Kirk," the Klingon boomed, staring at him icily, "This room is not intended for torture," he paused, then stood up straight, "Many years ago, perhaps before you were created, we achieved genetic manipulation. A Klingon spy in human form on a Federation ship."
Jim tensed his jaw. He saw where this was going and didn't like the sound of it.
"We are now going to achieve the opposite. Bring the Federation officers and alter them into Klingons. Their knowledge of the Federation will remain intact; however you will battle on our side, and look like our people. The ultimate sacrifice…so that we shall become successful."
Jim scrunched his hands into fists when he noticed they were shaking. This was something he wasn't sure Bones would be able to fix…or even reverse.
"Listen, have you even tried this before or—"
"Do not question me, Captain Kirk!" the Klingon shouted, "I will order your death if you do not co-operate, and we will simply use another member of your crew instead."
Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.
Jim's blood went cold, and before he could even react to the order, doors barged open and two Klingons came stomping in, the leader not taking his eyes off him, "Prepare him," he ordered coldly.
He swallowed hard, "No, listen, this probably isn't going to work," he began, grunting when two Klingon's definitely much stronger than him, grabbed him under the arms and dragged him towards the table. His legs gave out from anxiety.
"Stand up, you pathetic ape!"
Jim knew what was happening—he was about to have another panic attack.
The last time it had happened was 3 years ago, and Bones was there to calm him down. And it hadn't happened again since. Until now.
Deciding to ignore his disobedience, the two Klingon guards simply continued carrying him across the room, his knees scraping across the floor until he was brought to the table and hauled facedown onto the platform with a BANG.
Jim coughed as he inhaled the lingering dust on the surface, his body weak from an impending anxiety attack that he hoped wouldn't show its face.
He felt the tight sting of rope being wrapped around his ankles, his arms being pulled out to their sides on parts of the table he didn't even know was there, rope being tightened around his wrists.
"What, you guys never heard of sedatives? You're pretty inferior compared to us earthlings," Jim taunted the best he could, straining against the rope but of course, it was tightly banding his limbs to the table. So tightly that the circulations in his hands and feet were quickly being cut off.
"Klingons do not use what you humans call sedatives," rumbled a guard Jim hadn't heard speak before, "You are to be a Klingon. Be proud, and suffer through it like a true Klingon Warrior!"
Jim was about to crack another joke before he felt hands ruthlessly begin ripping the clothes off his body. He shuddered instantly, the hyperventilating becoming much more prominent.
Klingons must be genetically manipulated into being unable to form strong emotions such as panic, fear or upset. He only hoped whatever they planned on doing got rid of the panicking quickly.
With his back now exposed to the elements, he grit his teeth at the hyperventilating that was threatening to take over his body.
"Don't suppose I have a choice," he mumbled into the wooden table he was face down on, forcefully trying to calm his nerves.
He heard a loud whirring above him—some clanking—and a low buzz that turned into a high-pitched screech.
"No, you do not, Captain Kirk."
The noise grew louder as it grew closer, his breathing growing manic and out of control as he could practically feel wind generated from the instrument against his back.
Suddenly, his body arched as something dug into the top of his spine—he screamed bloody mary into the table, jerked at his limbs, trying to get them to move, but it was futile.
He vaguely heard the voice of the Klingon behind him against the shrill noise of both the device and his screaming – "Your name will be HoD qIrq when you are finished," before he heard the sound of the metal door slamming shut, leaving Jim to the machine.
It must have been twenty excruciating minutes later, and whatever this device was, was still going up and down Jim's spine over and over again.
His light-headedness caused him to lose feeling in his limbs—or at least that's what he hoped the reason was. Everything was numb, so he couldn't even try to move.
At this point his throat was so painful was screaming that flecks of blood had appeared on the table he was forced to stare down at, whether it was from his throat or from the machine he had no idea.
As the device began its cycle of cutting into spinal bone again, Jim squeezed his eyes shut and moaned hoarsely into the table. It hit another sensitive spot—he let out an ear-piercing screech—and sobbed as it moved on. He wanted it to be over. He wanted to die.
He didn't know how long he had been lying there, face down on the table with his limbs pinned to his sides, this machine working on his spine for god knows what reason. He assumed it was because his spine needed to hold whatever they were going to do to him, so they were giving him a Klingon spine? He didn't know.
He didn't want to know.
He just wanted to die.
Distantly, over the shrill noises, the sound of a metal door unclamping startled Jim out of his miserable thoughts, briefly bringing his attention to the heavy footsteps before sobbing into the now wet-stained wood again.
"It is unfortunate you are in this much pain. You must be honoured to become a Klingon, to be trained into pain becoming a pleasure!"
Jim could only moan into the table.
There were more heavy footsteps. Jim arched as the instrument hit a particularly sensitive spot on the top of his spine, and screeched.
"It appears your spinal reconstruction is progressing well," the Klingon marvelled, now much louder so was probably standing beside him, "It is almost recognisable as a Klingon spine. Soon you will be eligible for a total anatomy reconstruction."
Jim clenched his jaw, trying to control his breathing so he could speak.
There was a few moments of silence, before the Klingon began belting out some more crap.
"I am honoured to be watching birth of the future Chancellor of the Klingon empire," he marvelled, "Ah. Your posterior is sealed."
Blissfully, at the same time, the agonising object was retracted from his back, the excruciating pain still radiating through his spine, but the causal object was gone nonetheless.
"You will be much stronger now. However, without altering your anatomy to that of a Klingon, you will become paralyzed. Let us proceed to the next procedure."
As hands began untying his wrists and ankles, he was beginning to get rolled over onto his back. He panted against agony that he had never felt before.
While his limbs were once again pulled out to their sides and tied down, he saw the machine for the first time. It looked much like a circular saw blade. He cringed. That had been in his back.
The machine then positioned itself directly above Jim's sternum, ready for the command to begin sawing through his ribs, and with his arms pinned to their sides—powerless to stop it.
His breathing grew laboured as his eyes laid upon the machine inches away from him.
"Hh-ey, g-guy," Jim spluttered hoarsely, trying to get the Klingon's attention, "D-don't ssssuppose I c-can take a b-br-reak?"
The Klingon laughed at his request. "You are not Klingon material!" then stepped closer, "But fear not. I will make you Klingon material."
"B-but l-listen," he choked, trying not to panic as the Klingon began typing in commands for the machine to start up again, desperately looking between him and the saw directly above his ribs, "I'm n-n-numb, d-do you w-want a pa-pa-paral-lyzed le-leader?"
The Klingon paused, and eyed him, scowling.
"That would not be good. We would have to kill you and find another human," he pondered this for a few seconds and then stepped towards Jim, his heart pounding in his chest so hard it was starting to hurt, "As a flagship Captain you are our best leader material. Tell me what I am to do to avoid the risk of paralysation. Guards!"
Jim tried to hide the sigh of relief he had. If he could get the Klingon to untie him, it would give him a chance to escape. The metal door opened again, two Klingons walking in silently.
"Ju-just let me out o-of the-these rest-t-t-raints for a f-few minutes a-and con-cont-continue…"
The lead Klingon glared at him, obviously anticipating his attempt to escape, but clearly not wanting to risk him being paralysed. He turned to the other guards in the room.
"Untie him and allow seventy-three seconds of guarded release. Then put him back down and continue with the procedure."
The two guards nodded, "Luq", and waited for the current leader to leave.
He was then untied from the table, allowing him to move his limbs for the first time in an hour.
He tried to stretch his legs, but bit back a scream.
Everything hurt so much.
He wanted to cry. But not in front of the Klingons.
"Do not try to escape," the first guard said, eying him carefully, "We will begin genetic manipulation without first altering your pain receptors, to elicit extreme pain as punishment."
Jim swallowed hard.
Either he escaped and got out, or escaped and died in agony.
"I n-need to ch-check I'm not g-going to b-be par-paraly-lysed," he lied, turning his head towards the pile of torn yellow clothes left on a nearby wooden table.
"How?" the second guard asked.
"I need my tr-tri-tricorder," he stuttered, "It's y-yellow. D-don't w-worry, it's j-just a sc-scanner, I ca-ca-ca-can't d-do any-anything w-with it,"
The two guards looked at each other and nodded in confirmation, the first stomping over to it.
He thrust the communicator—tricorder into Jim's hand and glared at him, "Make your scan quick, and alert us to your findings."
Jim nodded, flipping it open, his heart racing at the light static jingle it made. He was so close to rescue.
He pretended to scan himself for a bit, hovering over his side, unable to reach his ribs due to the massive machine hovering over it.
Then looking above his eyebrows to see the Klingons watching him, he read the blank screen, pretending to take in his 'vitals', then nonchalantly flicked the 'red alert' button, indicating he needed immediate beam out.
The button started flashing red, alerting him that the receiving end—the Enterprise had been transmitted the message, and he flipped the communicator shut, forcing a smile.
"A-all is ok, the nu-numbness is just te-temporarily b-because of the r-restraints, just like I thought."
The Klingons both nodded in unison, the first guard taking the communicator away from him and planting it back on top of his shirt.
The second Klingon walked back around to the control panel, as the first began tying him back down again.
"We hope the next time we enter this room, you are a Klingon, and not an ape."
Jim scoffed, closing his eyes, and begging to whatever deity out there that his crew would get him back in time.
As the low whirring noise started up, growing louder and high-pitched once again, Jim dared himself to open his eyes and see the circular axe saw whirling, lowering to his ribs. He watched the metal door slam shut as the guards left, Jim squeezing his eyes shut as he anticipated the world of agony he was about to endure.
He bit back a scream as the axe sliced off the first layers of skin—but then there was nothing but static.
The high-pitched noise drowned out into nothingness.
He felt he was floating.
For a second he thought he had died, and he opened his eyes to see what happened—but everything was white.
There was a low hum, but it was a comforting hum, a sound he was used to.
Turning his head to the side, he saw a long corridor, doors that looked like they were from—
Oh god, the Enterprise.
They found me.
I'm not gonna die.
Jim shut his eyes.
"Oh god…" he scrunched his face and started sobbing on the floor, oblivious of the fact he was still completely stark naked in the middle of the corridor.
At the sharp pain his crying brought, he shot open his eyes and lifted his now free hands over his chest, wincing at the sharp sting.
He lifted the hand to his face, grimacing as it was dripping with crimson blood.
Clearly the Klingon's had managed to get a five second head start into his chest before he was beamed out.
For a second, he began to wonder why he was in the middle of a corridor and not in the transporter room or sickbay.
He blinked, as all rational thought began to return to him.
Lifting a hand to his chest and seeing blood meant he had no shirt on. He had no shirt on back in the chamber, no trousers either, so he was probably still naked. In the middle of a corridor. On the floor. As the Captain.
Without thinking, he twisted onto his front in an attempt to stand up, biting back a scream that hit his lungs as his spine rebelled.
He wondered if he could survive with such a deformed spine.
Clenching his fists, he slammed one foot on the floor, then the other, hauling himself to his feet with a loud unsuppressed groan.
Glancing down, he noticed his entire front was dripping with blood, from his sternum and running down his stomach, dripping onto the floor.
I probably look like something out of a horror movie.
He turned around slowly, painfully, trying to find his way to the turbolift. Which way was quickest? How far in the corridor was he? Was it quicker from the left turbolift or the right?
Out of gut instinct, he headed to his right, especially as there appeared to be a more complicated corridor to his left, which probably meant that route was further away.
He stumbled his way towards the turbolift, biting back a whimper and sob with every step he took, every movement jarring his injured spine.
Finally, he pressed himself into the turbolift door, almost falling inside as it opened, taking one more step inside before completing collapsing on the cold marble floor.
As the doors closed around him, he moaned two pitiful words into the voice recognition software.
The turbolift beeped and began to hum as it moved, alerting Jim that it was about to bring him home.
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