The Competition

A/N: Don't own. Written because it seems that in every story there seems to be some point where Spock and Uhura share tea or coffee acting as a bonding moment. Also no beta, so if any mistakes or just awkwardness let me know and will correct them.

Some thoughts on tea:

"If you are cold, tea will warm you. If you are heated, it will cool you. If you are depressed, it will cheer you. If you are excited, it will calm you." - William Gladstone

"I view tea drinking as a destroyer of health, an enfeebler of the frame, an en-genderer of effeminancy and laziness, a debaucher of youth and maker of misery for old age. Thus he makes that miserable progress towards that death which he finds ten or fifteen years sooner than he would have found it if he had made his wife brew beer instead of making tea." — William Cobbett in Cottage Economy (1821).

Some thoughts on coffee:

"No one can understand the truth until one drinks of coffee's frothy goodness." - Sheik Abd al-Qadir

"Coffee leads men to trifle away their time, scald their chops, and spend their money, all for a little base, black, thick, nasty, bitter, stinking nauseous puddle water." -The Women's Petition Against Coffee (1674)

Like all things it started innocently enough, just the two them that indulged in this ritual. It continued on Enterprise, they would take a break and head down to the mess hall. He would prepare tea and she would prepare her coffee, they would claim a table in the near deserted cafeteria and just sit there. Occasionally there would be conversation but it was mainly quiet, just the moment of being together was enough. It was simple, relaxing; straight forward; the essentials of their relationship in 30 minutes.

There was no major change that started this strange competition. There were only ripples, the first one being that the Captain happened to walk into the cafeteria a month into their ritual.

"Hey, you two," said Kirk, his eyes darting between the two officers, in confusion.

"Greetings, Captain," said Spock.

"What are you two doing here?"

"Taking our daily break," she said.

"What? Really?" said the man.

Both members matched their captain's look of confusion with their own.

"You're not off having a quickie?"

Uhura nearly spit her coffee out, instead she started choking.

"No Captain," said Spock still confused. "Quickie I assume is a slang term that I have not heard before. What does it mean?"

James Kirk took a second to think about it.

"A really fast sex act," said the Captain.

"Captain, I assure you we would never neglect our duties in that way."

"Well why not? I thought for the past month that you two had been doing just that. Hell if you guys are just doing this everyday use the Captain's Ready room."

In the long run it may have been better that everyone thought they were sneaking off to have quickies. The next day Scotty walked into the ready room and saw the two them sitting there.

"Commander, Lieutenant" he said, "I heard from the Captain about your breaks and well I heard that you actually have tea bags Commander."

"Indeed."

"Well would it be fine if I joined you?"

Spock looked over at Uhura, she shrugged her shoulders. It was Spock's tea not hers.

"That would be fine," said Spock.

The engineer smiled and went fishing thru the cabinets until he came upon a mug. He filled it with hot water and joined the two at the table. Spock slid the box of tea bags over to the man. The man ripped open the bag and put it into the mug, the steam rising from the cup. He put the cup up to his nose and took a long sniff.

"You cannot get a decent cup of tea from any replicator, an old family saying," he said. "However is there any cream?"

Spock looked at the man like he had just asked if he would like to make out with a Klingon, well Uhura could tell, he had that look.

"I think you should try the replicatior," she said.

"Well guess I'll have to pick up a cow at the next port," said Scotty.

The man took a sip.

"Eh, Commander you have no idea how wonderful this is. This takes me back to afternoons at my Gram's. She was a tough woman but always loving. I used to have an ancestor a great, great, great, well you get the idea, grandfather a thousand years in the past, he was a strange man, name of Arthur and English," the Scotsman made a face equivalent to eating a lime when he mentioned this part of his heritage.

"Anyways he was known in my family for insisting on tea time. So it traveled down the ages. He would then tell these outrageous stories of hitchhiking the galaxy and never getting a proper cup of tea. Thus the old family saying of you cannot get a decent cup of tea from a replicator…even though there was no such technology back then."

A look of a troubling thought came across the Scotsman face, which he seemed to quickly dismiss.

"The saying probably changed over the years. Anyways queer sort of man, always carried a towel around and said he could fly. This just is nice, ya know?" said the engineer with a smile.

Uhura smiled and Spock seemed like he was amused in his own way. They both thought at the time it might not be a bad thing for some people to join them.

The fourth person to join them was Sulu, once he heard from the Scotsman about Spock's tea, the man started joining them. He took his tea with a slice of lemon squeezed in then the whole wedge would fall to the bottom.

There was no story about a slightly mad ancestor, just that he worked at a tea house during secondary school and tea relaxed him.

She felt for some reason outnumbered by the three men drinking hot tea. Luckily Jim Kirk, something she never thought she would think, came around. He noticed after a week how most of his senior staff disappeared into his ready room and joined them. Turned out he enjoyed coffee. He liked the Kenyan beans which were in fact from her cousin's plantation; who lovingly sent more than a few pounds of coffee, just before Uhura shipped out, to act as a private stash.

Kirk unlike her took his coffee with cream and two spoonfuls of sugar. At first it slightly disturbed the communications officer. He was covering up the natural flavors of the coffee. She probably would have kept the beverage away from the captain if the argument had not come up.

The discussion as Spock referred to it later, when he could tell that she was slightly annoyed about what was discussed.

Uhura could not pinpoint who exactly started it but she was fairly certain it was Scotty, the tea drinker. Spock and her were engaged in what she thought of as foreplay. They would sit there and look at one another over their mugs. Just holding each others gaze, she would watch as he would slowly drink, his mouth opening, his firm jaw moving his features just the tiniest bit, the liquid going past his lips, the pleasure of the taste in his eyes, past his tongue, down his throat, making his Adam's apple move in a manner that made her think of when he would be taking large gulps of air while he hovered over her. The liquid going to his core, his firm core which she could better appreciate as he mov—

"BULLOCKS!"

Uhura turned her head to see what the hell had just interrupted her moment of peace, well not peace, but her moment. It was Scotty and Kirk arguing the merits of something.

"Come one it's the far superior drink, there's more caffeine, it has a better taste."

"Really a better taste is that why you try to cover it with two packets of sugar and cream?"

"Everyone takes their coffee a different way. It's just the better drink."

Uhura would not care to relive the details; Spock had done it enough for her. But the facts were these. Scotty and Jim continued to argue when the Captain had said something that caused Sulu to jump in. Kirk then somehow got Uhura to join in the conversation, where she listed her rational, logical, perfect good points. Which Spock then had to come in and tell her were emotionally based and not factual.

The argument stopped after that point when all three human men saw Uhura's look. Later when asked about it, she would wonder why she felt so emotional about the stupid debate and would blame getting caught up in the moment.

The next day everything seemed back to normal. But then Sulu and Scotty started talking about the rituals of making tea. Sulu just casually mentioned that tea, unlike coffee was calming but stimulating at the same time. Uhura sipping her mug, narrowed her eyes, and then heard Spock agree with the clearly incorrect comment. Her fingers tightened about her mug. She parroted back what Spock had said to her the day before and she could of sworn that there was some strange underlying tension.

He started it, said a voice in her head that was reminiscent of her at five years old.

The next day McCoy had joined the five of them for the break. Kirk evidently was trying to build their ranks, since the good doctor was decidedly a coffee drinker.

"Sugar?"

"I'm sweet enough, Jim," said the medical doctor, who sprinkled cinnamon on top of his drink. He asked Uhura if she would possibly make it with chicory, the look she shot the southern gent made him hold up his hands and back away slowly with his cup.

Still it was now evenly matched, three against three. There was one last senior officer who had yet to join them in their break. Everyday Kirk and Sulu would encourage Chekov to join them in their break, both men promising to brew him the perfect cup of caffeine.

Finally one day the young Russian man joined the group. Both groups looked at the youngest member of the crew expectantly. Uhura wondered if he knew that by his choosing of either drink he declared the winner.

"So what would you like lad?" asked the smiling Scotsman.

The six senior members waited with bated breath. The young man looked at both groups of people, the two choices displayed and took a deep breath.

"Is there any hot chocolate?"

A/N: So what side are you? Coffee, tea or joining with Russia's answer to Pikachu? Also reveiws are appreciated.