I don't own Star Trek…

This is an outtake from my last fic "Meandering," but it isn't necessary to read that story to follow along with this one.

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Chapter 1

Spock sat quietly at his desk reviewing the first drafts of the syllabi covering the courses he would teach during his inaugural semester as an instructor at Starfleet Academy. He was a week ahead of his scheduled meeting with the department head to review the list of topics he intended to cover with the fresh, young minds that would soon be taking his classes. He yearned for the monotony of incessant preparation to come to an end so he could actually 'do' something—anything—particularly since his evenings were no more stimulating than his days as Nyota was in the midst of the Academy's Preparatory Program.

They had not been alone for several weeks since the program required aspiring cadets to take up residence in dormitories for the duration of the program's six weeks of course work. However, the amorous couple had exchanged daily text messages, but thought better of making voice contact for fear of catching the wandering ear of a fellow Academy hopeful or faculty member. Not only was the 6-week 'break' necessary for their professional preparation, but it was much needed for the transition period their relationship was about to enter. It made Spock even more grateful for this particular time of day, because he knew that in a mere 32.6 seconds, Nyota would be making her way past his office window (which boasted an advantageous view of the quad) on her way to one of her labs.

During her first week in the program, Spock had made Nyota aware of his observances of her route between classes during the late morning class change. Initially, the pace of her steps was quickened, but once she knew of Spock's daily respite to indulge in a bit of voyeurism, she slowed her rate of speed considerably.

Spock rose from his seat and stood with anticipation in front of the narrow pane of glass that stopped just short of the ceiling and floor. The rays of sun glistening on the surface of the tiny sliver of the San Francisco bay within his line of sight transported his mind to Lake Victoria, and the moment he knew beyond a shadow of doubt that they would be together forever. With our without Sarek's blessing, Nyota would be his wife and not T'Pring—regardless of any further damage such a decision could inflict upon the already precarious relationship he had with his father. Spock crossed his arms in front of him and leaned his strong shoulder against the cool, metallic window frame, and the only thing that freed him from the hypnotic vision of the dancing waters was a flash of crimson that caught his eye as it came into view—right on schedule. While Nyota was not yet donning the uniform of a bona fide cadet, he found the standard issued attire for the Prep Program participants no less appealing on her lithe physique. The spandex body suit that clung to every curve of her torso nearly made up for the fact that her legs were covered by loose fitting running pants.

Nyota leisurely walked along the paved pathway with several of her classmates. The strap of her bag draped across the front of her body like a sash and her hands were clasped behind her back as if she too were Vulcan. As the group made their way past his window and Nyota's back was facing him, she wiggled the fingers of her hand as a greeting to her beloved. One corner of his mouth cocked into a half smile as he kept vigilant watch and responded in a hushed tone, "Hello, my k'diwa."

Spock ascertained that one of the young men walking behind her must have said something humorous as Nyota reacted by throwing her head back in a hearty laugh. She turned to acknowledge the young man and in the process shot a lingering glance towards Spock's office window. He was pleasantly exhilarated by the precision of her aim, because in spite of the tinting on the window which prevented those on the outside from looking in, it was if they were making perfect eye contact.

A young woman walking in the opposite direction of the larger group snagged Nyota away from the others and she bid farewell to her classmates. Nyota deftly moved her body around so she was once again facing Spock's window. She playfully moved her zipper up and down in a manner that would have seemed completely innocent to the woman standing in front of her, but Spock instantly recognized it as an attempt at flirtation—especially when the zipper was left at a much lower position than where it started. He would have to remember to tell her how successful her attempt was.

Whenever the young woman's attention fell to the information she held in her hands, Nyota would allow her eyes to wander up to the window. Even though the only image reflected back to her was a blue sky with puffy clouds, it was enough knowing that the man of her dreams—and thankfully, the man of her reality—was standing on the other side, gazing down upon her.

The young woman finished her conversation with Nyota and turned to walk away. Nyota waved an extended goodbye to her classmate and peeked upward so Spock would also be the recipient of her gesture. He smiled broadly and rapped on the glass in acknowledgement of their remote exchange. Nyota giggled when she saw the movement of the large pane then broke into a light jog to make up for the extra time she just spent to engage in a bit of coquetry.

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45 MINUTES LATER

Having completed the syllabi for his courses during the first semester, Spock turned his attention to the list of materials his students would need to obtain for his classes. The earlier vision of Nyota still smoldered in his head, and so skillfully invoked the memory of her scent that he could have sworn a spicy aroma billowed through the air surrounding him.

The chirp of his desktop monitor jolted Spock from his reminiscences, but he dutifully answered the call. Peering back at him was Captain Pike, and Spock immediately discerned the uneasiness of his countenance.

Abandoning his typical greeting, Spock asked his mentor, "Captain, is there a problem?"

Pike carefully replied, "Um. There's been an accident, Spock."

Before Pike could elaborate any further, Spock bolted from his seat and ran out of his office.

"Spock! Spock!" Pike shouted in vain to the young lieutenant who was already out the door and halfway to the lift that would lead him to his office 3 floors above.

In less than two minutes, Spock was at Pike's door which was open in anticipation of his arrival. Pike stood at the threshold and remained silent until they were both well within the confines of the Captain's office space and the door swooshed shut behind them.

"Captain, what happened? Where is she?" with more concern in his voice than Pike was used to hearing from the young Vulcan, but still not what he would consider panicked.

"My apologies for alarming you, lieutenant. Nyota is alright. In hindsight, those should have been my first words to you."

"Please, Captain, tell me what happened," Spock pleaded.

"I don't have a lot of details about the accident itself, but she took a blow to the side of her head."

This would not have surprised Spock if she were in a combat training class because even at an introductory level, the possibility of injury existed. However, knowing that she was on her way to a physics lab less than an hour earlier was a cause for concern because the probability of sustaining an injury due to course work was extremely low.

"I wish I could tell you more, but I only know that much because I saw her being transported to the infirmary. The EMTs let me know as much as they could in the little time they had. But I can tell you she was awake, and trying to convince all within earshot that she was just fine and that everyone was overreacting."

With that scrap of knowledge, Spock allowed himself an ounce of relief. It was pleasing to hear that she was conscious and exhibiting outward signs of normal behavior, but head injuries were tricky, particularly for the notoriously vulnerable human brain.

The irony of the same parties being involved in yet another situation relating to a head injury was not lost on Spock or Pike.

"It appears as though Nyota wants to follow in your footsteps in more ways than one," Pike jested.

"Thank you for sharing with me what you know, Captain. I am most appreciative."

"I will keep you posted as best I can. But Spock, you must not seek any information on your own. Officially, unofficially—or otherwise," Pike sternly warned.

"Yes, sir," Spock respectfully bowed.

Spock knew the ins and outs of every computer system employed by the Academy, probably even better than the back of his own hand, and Pike realized that. The last thing he wanted to see happen was his future First Officer thrown out of Starfleet because of hacking into his girlfriend's medical file. A year ago he would have never thought such a scenario possible for the extremely gifted, young Vulcan who chose to grace the Academy with his talent. But a year ago, the captivating and wise-beyond-her-years Nyota Uhura was not yet a part of his life.

Pike, hailed by the desktop monitor located directly behind him, moved around to answer the device's summoning. He lowered himself into the large chair and replied, "Captain Pike here."

"Captain, this is Dr. Joseph in the infirmary."

Spock had to call upon every ounce of his legendary restraint to dampen the impulse to shout out inquiries concerning Nyota's well being to the doctor. He moved closer to the monitor, but Pike raised his hand, which was outside of the range of the lens, to direct the young lieutenant to keep his distance and mask his presence in the room.

"Hello, doctor. What can I do for you?" Pike inquired.

"One of my assistants told me you may know how to contact Lieutenant Spock. We tried reaching him in his office but he doesn't answer. We need someone who speaks Vulcan to come down here as soon as possible."

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Nyota picked up the pace the further removed she was from Spock's window and the closer she came to the building in which her physics lab was conducted. As she suspected, the room was packed by the time she made her entrance and she was slightly winded due to her impromptu sprint from the quad. Her mad dash into the room caught the attention of the barely pubescent young man whose sandy ringlets Nyota simply adored. He waved his hand in the air to marshal her attention and pointed to the seat beside him indicating it was available for her use. Nyota smiled and made her way next to the wunderkind with the thick Russian accent who had the campus buzzing about his academic prowess.

Many of the students were intimidated by the wealth of knowledge the young man displayed. However, Nyota did not shy away from it because she fed off of his enthusiasm and loved observing how his mind worked. She also enjoyed speaking to him in his mother tongue and loved that she had an opportunity to brush up on her rusty skills with the Russian language. In Nyota's mind, he was the baby brother she never had, but always wanted.

As Nyota approached the chair, the young man removed his duffle bag so she could sit down.

"Thanks for saving me a seat, Pavel," Nyota chimed as she sat down and nudged his shoulder with her own.

"My pleasure," he responded with a hint of pink rapidly forming on his cheeks. "I have never seen you arrive so close to class starting. You are usually the first one here." Pavel knew this because he was usually the second one to arrive.

"Oh, I…um…stopped to say hello to a good friend."

"Do you want to see something really cool before the instructor gets here?" he asked in a hushed tone.

"Of course! Whatcha got?" Nyota asked, matching his child-like glee.

"Hold on a second, it is in my bag," he beamed.

While Pavel pivoted to his right to look through his bag for the item he wanted to share with Nyota, she bent down to her right as well to pull out her PADD which was still tucked away in her duffle. With their attention focused on their own tasks, neither was aware that they were both moving at the same time to return to their previous positions, resulting in the unfortunate convergence of her left temple and the heavy, cylindrical object that Pavel held in his hand. Nyota caught a glimpse of the silver, metallic item only a fraction of a second before contact, so she was unable to move out of the way before seeing the telltale flash of light that often accompanies a blow to the head.

Several of the other students in the immediately vicinity responded with a chorus of, 'Whoas!' and 'Ooos!' in response to the collision.

Petrified by what had just happened, Pavel grasped Nyota's shoulders and exclaimed, "Oh my God! Nyota, I am so sorry!"

Nyota shook her head to clear the cobwebs that were quickly forming, and reassuringly answered, "Don't worry, Pavel. I'm fine."

She placed her fingers on her temple and felt the sting of blood pooling around the injury. She involuntarily responded by tightly closing her eyes and grimacing at the pain.

"That's going to leave a bruise," she groggily joked.

Pavel cried to no one in particular, "Quick! Someone call for help!"

Nyota responded, "Don't be ridiculous, I'll be O. …"

Before the 'K' could be spoken, the side of Nyota's face crashed into Pavel's chest like a glass-jawed boxer falling to the canvas. Pavel had many fantasies about the position they currently found themselves in, but none of them involved him knocking her out cold.

"What in the world have I done?" he chided.

To be continued…

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A/N – Hmm...what is it with me and head injuries? I fully anticipated this outtake being a one shot, but once I got started, I realized it would take more the one chapter to get through this fic. I don't yet know how many chapters there will be, but it won't be anywhere near the length of "Meandering." Hope you enjoy!