AN: I feel crazy. But I so had to get this out of my system. Forgive me, I'm a ST fic virgin! Ok. Yes. I'm committing ST2009 fan fiction. But you know me... got have some comfort with all that hurt!


As the ship broke free of the singularity, the once-green crew of the Enterprise breathed a sigh of relief.

With the captain finally stabilized, Leonard McCoy felt comfortable leaving the man in the hands of his capable staff. Almost everyone was a little banged up, some more than others. The corridors were a-buzz with crew members working to get the ship back in one piece, falling back on the training Starfleet had drilled into every cadet.

If McCoy wasn't careful, this might inspire a cranky old man such as himself.

Old man.

McCoy had a few years on most of the crew, and today, he felt every year. Picking up the pace, the doctor made his way to the bridge. Leaning against the wall of the turbolift, McCoy thought of his friend, James Kirk, knowing the kid would likely have acquired a few more scrapes and bruises. Jim was by no means wiry, but the human body could only take so much. It's not like he tells me anything anyway.

Commander Spock, on the other hand, McCoy had yet to figure out the man. Being merely a country doctor, he wasn't sure he'd ever get used to seeing green blood. Knowing the Vulcan race, it was unlikely the commander would tell him of any injury either.

Clasping a small kit to his chest, McCoy stepped off the 'lift. The bridge crew darted from one station to another, going about their duties. Glancing around, McCoy spotted the dark-clad Kirk walking stiffly beside the ever-graceful Spock. They moved shoulder to shoulder, synchronously, in deep discussion.

The doctor recognized that Kirk's walk; it usually meant injured ribs. His head was cocked to one side, giving an imperceptive nod. Definitely a headache. Fishing out a diagnostic scanner, the doctor walked closer to the pair.

"Bones!" Kirk exclaimed, bright smile creasing his face. "How's the capt'n?"

Blinking, McCoy switched from concerned friend to concerned doctor. "He's stable for now. I'll know more once we get back." Waving his medical wand over the acting captain, he watched Kirk descend the steps with a wince and a less bright smile. "Thought I'd come check on the crew."

The Vulcan moved to Kirk's side. "Due to damage acquired fleeing the gravitational well of the black hole," he said quietly, hands clasped behind his back. "Our arrival will be delayed by four point eight-three hours. Starfleet has deployed vessels to assist in repairs. Will this be a problem, considering Captain Pike's condition?"

McCoy eyed the commander suspiciously. He had a feeling Vulcans took sarcasm to a whole new level. Satisfied that the other man was serious, McCoy shook his head. "No, he'll be fine for a few hours yet."

"I am cognizant of our situation, Doctor. The transporter may be online sooner, however, I wish it to be more than merely serviceable."

"Yeah, I got that. Captain Pike is resting now, and plans to remove the parasite are in the works."

"Good to hear, Doc," Kirk said, easing down into the command chair.

Focusing on the diagnostic information, McCoy studied the man in front of him. "Jim? You all right?"

Kirk painted on a grin. "I'm fine, Bones. It's not like –" Breath stuttering, Kirk paled further. "Oh." Suddenly, he pitched forward; the Vulcan's reflexes were definitely better than the doctor's own.

"Well, Jim, looks like we're going to spend some quality time together." McCoy glanced up at the commander. "Mind escorting our fearless leader to Sickbay?" If he had looked away, he would've missed the annoyed frown that flitted across the alien's face.

"Doctor, I must remain on the bridge. I am certain the captain would not appreciate my or anyone's assistance." Letting go of the languid body, Spock marched over to Communications.

With an armful of captain, McCoy looped an arm carefully around Kirk's waist.

Stumbling into his friend, Kirk smiled drunkenly. "Bones. I fought a giant Romulan. Shoulda seen it! A giant, tattooed bastard from the future."

Grabbing flailing arms, McCoy steered his favorite patient toward the 'lift. James Kirk had provided him plenty of practice with hasty stitches, handling someone with broken ribs, wrapping aforementioned ribs unnoticeably. He also perfected an effective hypospray cocktail containing painkillers, antibiotics, and an assortment of other medicines. What are friends for?

"Well, let's see what you've done to yourself now," he grumbled as they entered Sickbay.

"I'm fine, Doc. Really. Just kinda knocked around. I – Did you know U-Uhura's name is Neer– Nyo– N – Crap. I forgot already." Kirk slumped down on the med bed.

McCoy shook his head, the same way he always did when Jim obsessed over various beautiful women. Slipping the shirt over his friend's head, the doctor began his exam.

Layer upon layer of bruising, various cuts and scrapes... Nothing he wasn't used to seeing. Some of the bruises denoted a fall. "Jim, did you hit your head when you fell?"

"What? Maybe. A polar bear-bug chased me first, then that ant-spider thing came at me, and we rolled down the ravine. Snow and ice everywhere."

"Ravine? What the hell were you doing in a damned ravine?"

Kirk chuckled and winced. "Falling. That's where Spock saved me. Well, not this Spock. A different Spock, but the same Spock. He was old and he told me secrets. It was freezing!"

What the – "Dammit, Jim! I'm a doctor, not a decoder! Are you even tracking?" Bracketing his patient's face with his hands, McCoy suddenly wished for an old fashioned pupil gauge penlight. At the vocal protest of the patient, McCoy gently pushed Kirk down to the bed, hoping he would stay still enough for a diagnosis. "Well, looks like you're only slightly concussed. That thick skull of yours is useful for something."

The patient stilled under his hands; Jim Kirk was finally at rest. McCoy arranged the limp body, and pulled a thin blanket up to the captain's chin. Patting Jim on his good shoulder, the doctor tended to the rest of his patients.

With a moan and a twitch, Kirk slipped into an exhausted sleep. McCoy waited for the inevitable nightmare and or subsequent imaginary fight Jim would conjure in his mind's eye. He instructed his staff to alert him just in case, and warned them away. Rubbing his chin sympathetically, McCoy wandered to Pike's bed on the other side of the infirmary.

It was going to be a long four hours.


The End.