A/N: First venture into Star Trek. If you think I ought to continue, let me know! J


James Tiberius Kirk sat in his quarters, staring at the wall. A crust of blood still clung to the skin just beneath his nose, and his left eye had begun to swell.

He had experienced more than he'd bargained for in the last few days; destruction of a planet, assuming command of a starship, time travel, feeling the sensation of a black hole's implosion. They were now on course for Earth. He finally had time to sit down and wrap his head around everything, yet he could only focus on one thing.


That god damn Vulcan, came his knee-jerk reaction. I'll bet the bastard left bruises on my neck where his fingers—

And then that stir in his stomach.

He thought briefly of standing in the transporter before boarding the Narada. He was shocked when Lieutenant Uhura kissed Spock—weren't the Vulcans incapable of emotion?

Then, in one flash of light, he realized.

They are capable.

And so am I.

The stir turned into an abrupt hurricane. He'd been jealous of Uhura. And when Spock tackled him—

He jumped up, suddenly wanting to shed his skin. To cleanse his mind. This conclusion he'd drawn wasn't acceptable, wasn't logical—and even as he slipped into denial, he found himself thinking about the rationality of the Vulcan race and how it might be broken.

Instinctively, he followed the corridors to Pasha's room. She accepted him willingly, and he emptied himself inside of her with fervor. But his release did not purge the emotions sticking to his insides like barnacles. Afterwards, as she fell into a quick slumber, he stared at his crumpled Starfleet uniform lying on Pasha's immaculately clean floor. It didn't belong. He didn't belong. Quietly, he slipped out of bed, dressed, and left.

The ship was still, and Kirk needed a place to think. At home in Iowa, his escape had been the country. Out there, stars shone like raindrops of pure light, exquisite beauty above plain, rustling fields of corn. Now, he was surrounded by the stars. His feet took him to the bridge, where he stopped short.

Spock stood at the wide window, arrow-straight as usual, oblivious to everything around him. Kirk thought he might be meditating, and turned to leave.

"No," said Spock, his voice subdued. "You don't have to leave on my accord." He turned. "Good evening, Captain."

Kirk nodded. "You don't have to go, either. It's fine. I was just coming to—well, to look at the stars." He punctuated his sentence with a light laugh. As the words escaped his lips, they sounded strange. Surely, the last thing any of them wanted after these hectic few days was a larger dose of space.

"That is what I came for," Spock admitted, turning back to the window. "I need to regain control. Looking at the stars has always helped me to master my emotions."


"Yes, Captain?"

Kirk went to join him at the window. "Don't you think—don't you think that losing control is good sometimes?"

His answer was definite. "No."

"Why not?"

"Emotion clouds logic. One should use only logic to make choices."

Kirk shook his head. "If that line of shit was true, you wouldn't be here."

"Maybe," Spock said slowly, "that would be for the best."

"How would that be for the best?"

"I am an aberration. I am too human to fit in with the Vulcan ways, and too Vulcan— too Vulcan to fit in with the human ways."

The way he lowered his gaze as he said this made Kirk sure that something was wrong. "Spock?"


"What happened?"

"Lieutenant Uhura and I have ended our short-lived courtship."

"I'm sorry."

Spock looked completely unfazed. "It was a matter of time before our incompatibilities made a relationship impossible."

"You're a hell of an optimist, aren't you?"

Spock said nothing.

"I ought to just punch you," Kirk spat, frustrated. How could Spock remain so distant, so reserved?

"You wouldn't," Spock replied calmly.

"What do you mean, I wouldn't?"

"I have observed your behavior, Captain Kirk."

Kirk glared. "What?"

"You act… different in my presence."

He began to sweat. "Different?"

"Yes. The same manner in which Lieutenant Uhura acted before she expressed interest in forming a relationship."

Kirk said nothing. He watched Spock's calculating eyes watching him, using that formidable Vulcan logic to size him up, to predict his next move.

So he decided to be impulsive. He grabbed Spock by the collar and pulled them both to the floor, so that Spock was over him. James took him by the wrists.

"You have two hands," Kirk said. "Where does your Vulcan logic tell you to put them?"

"Logic tells me I ought to bend my wrists so that my hands can disable your arms, thus enabling me to stand up and escape the situation."

"I see. And what do your human emotions tell you to do with them?"

Spock smirked.

"My human emotions," he ventured, "tell me several things. Part of me is still angry with you and wishes to finish the job—" he lifted his hands from Kirk's grip—"that I started earlier." Placing his palms on Kirk's chest, he moved them to his throat.

Kirk felt his heart rate quicken. "What other things?"

"They tell me to indulge my curiosity." His hands drifted over the thin wool of Kirk's Starfleet uniform, his fingers hooking on the belt loops of his pants. "But logic—"

Kirk groaned. Goddamn logic.

"Logic tells me that it would be best to ask permission, Captain."

He looked back at Spock in surprise.

"Seal the bridge," he said in a hoarse whisper. As the doors closed around them, he turned to the man above him. "Permission granted."