Drunken Lovesick Space Cadets
He always wanted this. Nonstop adventure paired with a risk-taking career. When he told his parents he was enlisting in Starfleet and wanted to be a space pilot, they were unhappy to say the least. His father said he would bring shame upon his family and that he would never amount to anything great, while his mother wept in the corner whispering to herself about future grandchildren. It upset Hikaru Sulu to know that his parents did not support his choices in any way, but he couldn't relate to them. Not anymore. Besides, he didn't want a wife or kids. The lure of interstellar journeys had more pull on him than his family ever could.
And so, he left them without looking back, and for a long while his new job lived up to all his expectations. It was a week after Jim had become captain, a bit longer since the battle with Nero and the destruction of Vulcan, and things aboard the Enterprise had come to a peaceful lull. First Officer Spock and Captain Kirk were getting along, then Lieutenant Uhura was in a nearly constant bad mood (though you had to know when to look to notice it), and then there was Chief Medical Officer McCoy who was left to lurk around sickbay with no sick patients to tend to.
In other words, there was nothing exciting for Sulu to distract himself with. The pangs of homesickness hit him hard early one morning an hour before his shift on the bridge was due to begin. In his quarters, he quickly ran through some fencing drills in the hope that physical exercise would distract him, but to no avail. He tried food instead, hoping that a hearty breakfast would soothe not only his empty stomach, but his empty heart. But once again, to no avail.
Upset with himself for being a hypocrite, he frowned down at his breakfast plate and could not believe that he was missing his parents and siblings after all he had done to separate himself from them. He looked around the room dejectedly and wondered if he should check himself into sick bay. He didn't feel like working today and he'd kill two birds with one stone by giving McCoy something to do as well. It was this thought mixed with self-pity that quickly disappeared from his mind when Pavel Chekov slid onto the bench to sit beside him.
Without saying a word, Chekov checked that Sulu's coffee cup was empty, pulled a shiny silver flask from his Starfleet issue pants, and poured its contents into Sulu's cup. "Whatever it is, that vill help." he said, nudging the cup toward Sulu.
"Is that what I think it is?" Sulu asked warily.
Chekov smirked. "Vodka? Yes. Now drink up."
Sulu raised both eyebrows incredulously. "Before my shift? I can't."
"Drink." It was a simple command. Chekov turned his attention to his own plate and began eating.
Shaking his head in disbelief, Sulu took the cup and gulped deeply. In retrospect, he regretted that first taste immensely. It left him spluttering with watery eyes and a hoarse voice. The only reason he continued to drink was because of the way Chekov beamed at him proudly.
"See? Better already. Drink." Chekov said, patting him on the shoulder.
~ thirty minutes later ~
"Alright, time for work!"
Chekov's voice was too loud and too cheerful and all Sulu wanted was to keep his head on the cool tabletop. And maybe sleep...sleep was good.
"Come on then." Sulu felt Chekov grab him by the arm and drag him up. If he didn't feel so limp and useless, he would have complimented Chekov on his strength.
"Whoa." Sulu moaned when Chekov got him to his feet. He tried to walk, but instead stumbled into his friend's arms.
"I can't walk."
"Of course you ken. Just hold onto me and put one foot in front of the other. There, you've got it."
He had to admit that Chekov's arm holding him up was pleasant and cozy. He would have to remember later to tell him what a good friend he was.
"Chekov, I think the bridge is that way." Sulu said slowly, pointing in the opposite direction of where they were headed.
"Yes. I may have overlooked the fact that not everyone is as accustomed to vodka as I am. I'm taking you to sickbay."
Sulu smiled goofily, letting his head loll onto Chekov's shoulder. "Sickbay has beds." he said, proud of his own knowledge.
"Indeed. Come on, we're almost there."
"You are warm. And bony. But it's ok. It's kind of nice."
"Thank you, Sulu."
"Well, if it isn't tweedle dum and tweedle dee." McCoy said dryly as Chekov and Sulu entered sickbay. "Why aren't you two on the bridge?"
Chekov cleared his throat. "It seems he's contracted space sickness, sir." he lied, still supporting Sulu's weight against his own.
"Impossible." McCoy quipped.
Sulu grinned. "Chekov gave me vodka!"
McCoy's mouth dropped open, but he quickly recovered, shooting Chekov his most disapproving glare. "Mr. Chekov, what did the Captain tell you about giving alcohol to the crew? Not everyone came out of the womb with a bottle of Stoli in their chubby little hands! Get him in there."
Chekov nodded apologetically. "Yes, sir. Thank you, sir. If you could just keep an eye on him until--"
"Dammit man! I'm a doctor not a babysitter! You take care of him, Mr. Chekov." McCoy threw his hands in the air and exited the area.
Chekov watched the doctor's back as he stormed off before tugging Sulu towards the beds.
"Am I in trouble?" Sulu slurred, his eyes fluttering.
"No, but I may be. Here, lay down on this bed."
Sulu heaved a contented sigh when his head hit the soft, cool pillow. Sure, the room was spinning and it made him want to vomit a little, but this was much more acceptable than his uncomfortable chair on the bridge.
"Thank you." He managed to murmur before closing his eyes and snuggling down into the blankets.
"You are quite welcome. Now, do you want to talk about it?" Chekov asked, pulling up a chair beside the bed.
Sulu shook his head, but did not open his eyes. "Homesick. I miss everything."
Chekov sighed earnestly. He knew exactly how Sulu was feeling. A five year mission was a large commitment and surely at some point all of the crew would miss home. It just hit Sulu faster than other members of the crew.
"This is your home now. These people...they are your family. Give me your hand."
Sulu obeyed and felt the warm, firm grip of Chekov's hand around his. "We are family, Sulu," Chekov whispered, "You'll be fine. Now, sleep."
Hours later, McCoy returned to his station and found the two young men like that. Hands clasped tightly, Chekov asleep in the chair with his head resting on their joined hands, and Sulu asleep on the bed with a small smile on his lips. Getting back to work, he rolled his eyes at the scene. He had enough to worry about, the last thing he needed to deal with was a pair of drunken lovesick space cadets.