A/N: This story shall be updated once a week (every Friday). Thanks to zookitty for the beta. I've messed around with it since she looked at it, however, so all mistakes are mine.
Spoilers/warnings: Anything in the movie is up for grabs. Also trying to stick as close to canon as possible for the show, but I haven't watched many. Most of my knowledge is limited to what I've found on (numerous) Web sites, so if I'm off on something, feel free to let me know.
The transporter room was thick with tension as the small group waited near the pad. "Zey're coming now," Chekov said quietly, looking up from the controls, concern etched on his young face.
"If he shows up complaining about a damn paper cut again, I'm going to strangle him myself," McCoy hissed, fists clenching around his medical tricorder.
"I think it's something far more serious this time," Uhura replied softly, eyes locked on the pad as it began to energize. "Spock sounded concerned."
Any further conversation was cut off as the away team suddenly reappeared. All eyes locked on Spock and Scott as they rushed toward McCoy, Kirk dangling limply between them. "What the hell happened?" McCoy demanded, scanning Kirk with the tricorder as the pair lowered the unconscious captain onto the waiting gurney.
"The captain and I were just returning from a tour of the Pilarians' production plant when he suddenly collapsed," Sulu explained, stepping off the pad.
No one missed the blood draining from McCoy's face as he stared at the readings. "I'm not finding a pulse!" he growled, setting the tricorder aside. "Help me lower this down," he barked at Spock, grabbing the gurney. The Vulcan obeyed silently, and together the pair lowered it so that Kirk's body was only a few inches off the ground.
McCoy knelt down and tipped Kirk's head back, pressing two fingers to Kirk's neck before giving him two rescue breaths. "Anyone here know CPR?" he asked as he moved to start compressions.
"I do," Uhura replied, swiftly moving to kneel next to the gurney.
"Then get ready to breathe for him," McCoy told her, looking down at the body beneath his hands. Kirk's head jerked a little every time the CMO pressed down on his sternum. His skin was pale and his lips were a deathly shade of blue. McCoy swallowed hard, voice cracking as he ordered, "Now!"
As Uhura forced air into Kirk's lungs, McCoy glanced up at the others, who were all staring back with panic on their faces--even Spock had concern clouding his eyes. "Chekov, radio Chapel. Tell her to bring the crash cart and get up here now!" He turned away without waiting for Chekov's nod and began compressions again.
"I just don't understand," Sulu breathed as he watched McCoy work. "He fine less than an hour ago!"
As Uhura breathed into Kirk's lungs again, McCoy shifted so he could place his fingers at his friend's neck. "Damn it, still nothing!" he spat, adjusting his hands over Kirk's chest again. "Don't ya even think about givin' up on me now, kid," he grunted fiercely, face flushed from his efforts.
Everyone in the room flinched as they heard the sharp sound of a rib cracking. McCoy paused for a brief moment before shifting the heels of his hands slightly and resuming his compressions, inwardly wincing at the feel of the rib shifting beneath his fingers. "Damn it, where the hell is Chapel?"
"Here, sir!" the nurse exclaimed as she burst into the room, wheeling a crash cart in front of her. "What's going on?" she asked, eyes wide as she snatched the Ambu bag off the cart and knelt down next to McCoy. Uhura backed away as the nurse placed it over Kirk's mouth and nose.
"His pulse was gone when he got onboard--the tricorder says he was in v-fib right before it happened," McCoy replied tersely, snatching the defibrillator off the crash cart and taking control of the Ambu bag as he set the device on the ground. "Prep him for the defib--we've got to get a rhythm back! See if there's any neural activity while you're at it."
As Chapel used a scalpel to slice the tunic of Kirk's dress uniform open, McCoy rocked his weight back to his heels, wiping the sweat off his forehead with the back of one hand as he stared up at the group gathered around them. "Y'all need to step back--we're gonna need space," he told them grimly, his Southern twang stronger because of stress.
"Negative on any brain or other neural activity, sir," Chapel announced, setting her own tricorder aside to grab the defibrillator paddles.
The CMO turned his attention back to his patient as Chapel placed the gel-slicked paddles on Kirk's bare chest. McCoy pulled the Ambu bag away as Chapel firmly declared, "Charging. And… clear!"
Kirk's body arched up reflexively in reaction to the electrical current before dropping back to the gurney with a solid thump. McCoy snatched his tricorder up, scowling deeply when he saw the readings. "Still nothing. Up it to three-hundred! He's been down too long."
"C'mon, laddie," Scott whispered fiercely.
Chapel nodded at McCoy, making adjustments on the defibrillator while the doctor placed the Ambu bag over Kirk's mouth long enough to give him two more bursts of air. "Charging to three-hundred. Clear!"
The room was silent as Kirk's body rose up for a moment before falling back down limply again. Uhura's hand flew up to her mouth, and Scott had to grab Chekov's shoulders to keep him from falling. Spock's eyes were hard and Sulu's fists were clenched as McCoy moved to scan Kirk again.
"No," he whispered, tossing the tricorder aside and pressing the fingers of his right hand into Kirk's neck while snatching up a wrist with the left. "Don't you do this, Jim--don't you do this," he hissed fiercely, lowering his ear until it hovered a few centimeters above Kirk's mouth.
"What about a cortical stimulator?" Spock asked softly. "If we can revive his neural processes…"
Chapel shook her head grimly, voice quiet and thick when she replied, "It does no good if we can't get his heart restarted."
"Damn it," McCoy muttered, shifting back to restart compressions. "Chapel, try again!"
"Yes, doctor," Chapel said quietly, adjusting the defibrillator once more. "Charging." She placed the pads on Kirk's chest as McCoy blew in two more breaths and then sat back. "Clear!"
Kirk's body had barely reconnected with the gurney before McCoy was scanning him again. "Son of a bitch," he growled vehemently, starting compressions once more.
He glared up at Spock when the Vulcan laid a hand on his shoulder. "Doctor--"
"He's not dead, damn it!" McCoy snarled, cutting Spock off. "This is Jim Kirk. He drives cars off cliffs, gets himself shot, gets strangled, beat up, and a hundred other idiotic and childish things, but he doesn't die!"
Spock's lips pressed into a thin line dropped his hand and stepped back slightly. McCoy sent a sharp glare at all of them before resuming his compressions. "You hear me, kid? You do not get to die on me! Not now," he muttered, keeping his gaze away from Kirk's too-pale face and too-blue lips.
No one breathed as McCoy continued to work. After another eight sets of compressions and breaths, the CMO moved his head to Kirk's chest, pressing his ear to the area above the captain's heart.
A long, long moment later, McCoy slowly pulled his hand away from Kirk's neck, twisting so that his forehead rested on Kirk's sternum. His knuckles were white as he firmly clenched Kirk's wrist, and his shoulders slumped in defeat. They all flinched when the doctor hoarsely whispered, "Call it."
Everyone stared silently in shock as Chapel glanced at her watch and shakily declared, "T-time of death: nineteen-hundred hours."