Sulu had kept a close eye on Chekov for the duration of their shift on the bridge together. He had noticed (especially) in recent days that the young Russian ensign was attracting more attention than usual, and not for all the right reasons.
Once Chekov's shift was over, he had dragged himself off the bridge in a lifeless fashion that made every pair of eyes in the room follow him. Kirk was about to pursue the Russian but Sulu shot him a glare. Kirk looked at him for several seconds before nodding and sitting back down, giving Sulu his silent permission to take his place this once in trying to find out what was troubling Chekov. Kirk's look also said that next time he was doing it himself regardless, so with only one go at cracking Chekov, Sulu walked off the bridge in search for the Russian.
Chekov wasn't that hard to find. Sulu went straight to the ensign's room and knocked before saying "Chekov? it's Sulu - i just want to ask you something about an equation." Nice lie, and taking the bate, Chekov let him in.
Sulustepped past chekov and moved into his quarters, not looking at anything in particular, waiting for Chekov to ask what he wanted to know about the fictional equation he had invented. Chekov walked past Sulu and back to where Sulu guessed he was before he arrived, walking with the air of what seemed to Sulu as extreme fatigue. His shoulders where hunched over, his feet were dragging and there was none of that life that youth seemed to have an infinite supply off.
"Vhat do you vant help on?" Chekov asked.
"What?" Sulu asked, caught of guard.
"The equation. Vhat do you vant to know?" Chekov asked again.
Sulu's cursed what his facial expression must have been because Chekov caught straight on that he wasn't there for anything to do with equations or anything similar. "Vhy are you here?"
"What's wrong?" Sulu asked deciding not to beat around the bush.
"Nothing is vong." Chekov replied with his head lowered.
Sulu contemplated how he was going to get the Russian to admit to what ever was wrong. There was no point in pointing out to the navigator that his navigation the previous day put them in orbit around the wrong planet, or how he tripped over his own feet and landed in the captains lap, not that Kirk was complaining. No - there was no point in taking that approach. That approach was more likely to make Chekov look like he was about to cry before running off, probably in to the bathroom, and refusing to speak to him again. Zero results to be gained from that.
"Something is wrong and everyone sees it." Sulu replied. "Kirk is one more incident away from sending you off the bridge for a month and straight to McCoy."
"The keptain vould not do d'at." Chekov said quietly.
"He will," Sulu informed him, "and he will have Spock behind him on it." Sulu sighed. "Pavel, I'm your friend, please talk to me."
Chekov looked up at Sulu for a short time, avoiding all eye contact.
"I ... i ..." Chekov trailed off.
"Pavel, please talk to me. I'm not going to judge you on anything you say. This is between just you and me." Sulu knew that if Kirk got involved it would most likely end up right around the ship; it would go as far as Spock and McCoy at best but Sulu didn't trust the man to keep his mouth shut.
"I... i have nightmares."
Sulu could tell that he was still keeping something from him. "What are the nightmares about? Is there an obvious reoccurring pattern to them?" Chekov clearly did not want to talk about it so Sulu continued to press him. "Is it something someone said or did to you? Did the captain say something? Was is me? Am i the problem? Did i do something? Pavel..."
"I love you." Chekov blurted out before his brain had time to stop his mouth from working. Sulu stood looking at Chekov stunned. Chekov blushed heavily with embarrassment.
"You ... you love me?" Sulu couldn't shake the feeling of amazement. Chekov went in melt down mode. He was shaking his head violently from side to side, ranting in heavily accented Russian. "Chekov, calm down, i can't understand a word you're saying." Sulu gripped his shoulders hoping the contact would work.
Chekov looked up, his fingers playing and fiddling with the hem of his unifrom. "Vhy do you not act disgusted? I vould not blame you if you did."
"Disgusted?" Sulu was stunned for the second time in as many minutes.
"Da. Vhere i come from vhati feel is said to be disgusting and vrong." His eyes started to shimmer with unshed tears.
Sulu felt his heart break with Chekov's words. "I do not find you disgusting."
"You lie." Chekov whispered.
Sulu couldn't find the words to prove himself to Chekov. Then the phrase 'actions speak louder than words' popped into his head.
Without thinking anything through, Sulu claimed Chekov's mouth in a fierce kiss. He shoved the younger man up against the wall, his hands all over Chekov's body, exploring it and receiving pleasure filled moans in response. He made a mental note to remember all the places on Chekov's body that would get him those responses before moving both of his hands into Chekov's hair. Sulu was the aggressor for the duration of the kiss while Chekov's mind went blank with the exception of one thought which was, 'Sulu's kissing me; he is REALLY kissing me'.
"Do you believe me now?" Sulu asked after he had broken the kiss and rested his forehead against Chekov's, trying to catch his breath. Chekov, like Sulu, was trying to catch his breath, his lips were swollen slightly and his hair ruffled.
"Can you tell me about those nightmares?" Sulu pressed once again, hoping that any new found confidence Chekov might have just found in him would allow him to finally give him an answer.
"In d'em i ... i vatch you die." Chekov chocked out. "I vatch and can do nothing."
Sulu pulled Chekov into a warm embrace, wrapping his arms tightly around the young Russian. Chekov buried his face in Sulu's neck, embracing him tightly, if not tighter.
"So, you loose sleep because you have nightmares of me dying?" Sulu asked just to make sure he had it correct.
"Da." Chekov voice was muffled by Sulu's neck but Sulu still heard.
"Will you sleep through the night if I'm next to you?" Sulu inquired, looking deep into Chekov's eyes and finding it hard not to get lost in them.
"I vould think." Chekov whispered back, taken by how deep and mysterious Sulu's eyes were.
Sulu smiled, "I guess I'm staying then."
"Really?" Chekov asked more out of amazement than anything else. "You vould do d'at?"
"Yes." Sulu confirmed by giving Chekov a quick kiss before lifting the ensign off the ground.
"Hikaru!" Chekov shrieked as his hands gripped the material on Sulu's back tightly while he wrapping his legs around Sulu's waist.
Sulu smirked with Chekov's reaction as he walked over to the bed and somehow managed to get Chekov to untangle his limbs from around him.
Sulu laid down behind him. Chekov had his back to Sulu's stomach while Sulu entwined his fingers with those on one of Chekov's hands. Sulu raised both hands together and kissed chekov's hand lightly. Chekov turned slightly to look at Sulu and Sulu leaned on his elbow to look down on the young ensign, his second arm on the other side of Chekov. They stayed like that for several seconds before Sulu closed the distance once more and kissed Chekov one last time.
"Sleep well, Pasha." He whispered into Chekov's ear.
Sulu settled down next to Chekov and breathed in Chekov's scent deeply. He couldn't deny it, the kid smelt good. He kept himself awake long enough to see Chekov off to sleep before closing his own eyes and allowing sleep to over power him as well.
Sulu awoke during the night to find Chekov in a state of deep sleep, still curled up close to him and showing no signs of being in any form of distress. Sulu placed a small kiss on Chekov's cheek before settling back down beside him, convinced that for the first time in weeks, Chekov was going to sleep through the night.