The prompt: I want Kirk to be shot and pass out. then come to in time to see Spock having one hell of an emotional reaction while applying pressure. They get rescued. Love confessions are made in sickbay.

Disclaimer: I own nothing.

They're looking at the strange vegetables in the town market, it'll be nice to have something that isn't replicated. The Ambassador of the planet Rhonia has given them a little money as a gesture of good will and Jim's idea was to get some fresh food from the market as a treat for the crew. Spock is with him, scanning the vegetables, or what look like vegetables with a tricorder to see if they are compatible with human and Vulcan digestive systems.

"I believe we might make the most use of those, Captain," says Spock pointing to the strangely egg-colored gourd plants. "They are most similar to Earth cucumbers."

"Yeah, that'd be awesome, I'm not allergic to those either. Bonus!" Kirk exclaims with glee. The Rhonian people are humanoid and have skin that is a fuzzy peach and feels just like one as well. They are lanky looking beings and the pale visitors intrigue them. Their fur protects them from the red giant that is their sun. It is nearly like a desert here, but for the large jungles interspersed like oases. Jim knows Spock likes it here and wants to spend a lot of time on the planet if he can before they're assigned their next mission.

Then comes a breeze and with it a smell of something bittersweet, a sweet smell that leaves an acrid aftertaste on the tongue, like rotting fruit. Jim's nose wrinkles, "What is that?" he turns to Spock. And then they hear the shouting, like it's coming from a great number of people. The sellers begin to pack up their wares and money in a flurry.

"What's going on?" Jim asks one of them and mentally curses the translator.

The female they speak to says something about resistance fighters, and they hear it in the shouting of the crowd. "Federation, we don't want you here!" and "Go back home, we kill anyone that stays!"

In this open market Spock and Jim are sitting ducks. Jim flips open his communicator, "Kirk to Enterprise, beam us up!"

The maddening sound of static comes over the line.

"C'mon!" Jim shouts at Spock. "We gotta get outta here, regroup, and get aboard the Enterprise!"

There comes a rush of sound that only comes from a large group of people and Spock knows they've been spotted since his superior hearing picked up "there they are!" And they're running and dodging the primitive weapons these people have. Fruit explodes in the stands they pass by, Jim is desperately looking for an alley and they're in a throng of people trying to get away from the angry mob.

They take a corner quickly and come face to face with part of the mob and Spock pulls him back around the corner, but not fast enough. Jim feels a hot burst of pain beneath his rib cage on his left side and he knows that something is about to go horribly, horribly wrong.

They're running, Jim with his hand on his side running slightly bent against the pain.

They stop in an alley and Spock is looking out around the corner and he is hit by the scent of blood, it's very strong. He looks at Jim who's holding a hand against his side. There's something under there he doesn't want to see.

"Captain, you are injured," Spock begins.

"Call the Enterprise," Jim interrupts, pulling in breaths quickly. He can feel the blood running down his leg and into his shoe. The sensation is not pleasant and he concentrates on that rather than the bursting pain in his side.

"Spock to Enterprise, come in," Spock speaks into the communicator.

"Spock?" comes Uhura's voice that's garbled a bit by static, but it's the most beautiful sound that Jim has heard. "Are you all right?"

"What is the situation?"

"There's been some sort of rebellion. They took down… lines and we can't get a clear… Transporter beam interrupted…interference…need boosting… Scotty says he can finish recalibration in a few hours…all okay?" the message was interrupted a few times by bursts of static, but he got the general gist.

"The captain is injured, we will need medical assistance," Spock enunciated as clearly as he could into the small microphone.

"Contact…soon. Enterprise out," was the response.

Spock clicked the communicator shut.

"We have to find somewhere to hide out," Jim said, leaning heavily against the wall, grinding his teeth as he pushed harder on his wound. "We're sitting ducks."

They make a plan to weave through the alleys, keeping away from the mob and staying out of sight. Spock remembered a dusty alley where it lead to the outskirts. There were small trading outposts that were there, a remnant of their industry. They could wait just outside the city until the Enterprise could get a clear reading on them. He tells Jim quickly of the plan and Jim nods. "Let's go. Faster we get there, the more time we have to make sure the Enterprise has what they need for a clear lock."

They move like shadows in the fading light, they've been chased nearly all afternoon. Jim stride falters every now and again, Spock reaches out and grips Jim's upper arm to make sure the man won't fall. They reach the hovel as soon as the red giant is beginning to touch the edge of the horizon. Spock settles Jim by the wall and tries to check Jim's wound, but he won't let him.

"Spock, I got it," Jim protests. "I've got pressure on it and it's fine. We need supplies, it's going to get cold tonight, we don't know how long we're going to be here. See if we can get another update."

He contacts the Enterprise again, approving of the stronger signal, it's less crackly, but the Rhonians had done something with their own communications towers that disrupted the Enterprise's, which seemed to be the primary goal.

The light is fading quickly now, more dark than light, and Spock returns to Jim to check on him. Spock has a small penlight in his pocket, but he doesn't want to alert any of the Rhonians to their presence, so he warns the captain as he is about to turn on the light.

"Spock," and it doesn't sound right coming from Jim, he's slurring a bit and crackles a bit too long on the consonants of his name. He might admit to feeling a bit of worry for his friend and commanding officer. He turns on the penlight and almost immediately wishes he didn't. Jim's glassy eyes look back at him, fluttering at the bright light. His complexion blue under the light and it seems almost surreal. There's a pool of blood forming beneath Jim. As if noticing his gaze Jim looks down at his wound where bright red blood is flowing from between his fingers.

"Whuz not that bad buhfore," Jim's speech is slow, labored.

Without a second thought Spock removes his own tunic and folds it so it would have the maximum coverage of the wound, he presses it tightly against Jim's side, replacing Jim's hand and the captain hisses in protest.

"H'rts," Jim admits.

"Pressure must be applied to reduce the bleeding," is Spock's reply.

"'S a through and through," Jim tells him and Spock looks into the glassy eyes. "Lotsa blood, but no bullet. Bones'll be happy to not go fishing for it."

Jim giggles lightly. "Fishing," he giggles again his imagination overtaking his consciousness. "Been so tired. Need some rest."

Jim's eyes begin to close.

"Captain!" Spock spoke sharply, enough to rouse Jim from his half-delirium. "You must stay awake until we can get assistance from the Enterprise."

"Can't feel muh legs, Spock," Jim says. "They're so far away. They're numb."

Despite Spock applying pressure, Jim is still losing blood, Spock's tunic is filling slowly and the acrid taste of iron is in the air. He encourages Jim to speak, to keep him awake. Spock feels apprehension, he wishes he didn't have to be here like this. With his best friend in his arms, dying. The universe always had to take from him, why couldn't he have this one happiness?

"Talk, Jim," Spock encouraged in the lull of Jim's story of something, it didn't really matter what he was talking about, some bar story.

"Wanna know how I beat your test?" Jim asks cheekily, even though he's in no condition to be so, it gives Spock comfort.

"Tell me," Spock replies.

"So I was reading your code, depressing by the way. I had to know where to think outside the parameters. There's no such thing as a no-win, Spock. There's always a possibility, no matter how small. You're a smart guy, you can do the math," Jim admonishes him gently and Spock's eyes shine a little with amusement in the faint light of the penlight that's on the ground, giving the hut a muted glow. "There's got to be some way to make them Klingons go back home."

Jim drifts off for a minute and Spock gently shakes him, moving closer, getting Jim's legs propped up as much as he can to increase the blood flow. Jim's looking up at him from the dirt floor with those blue eyes. "S'getting cold, Spock."

Spock lifts a hand and places it over Jim's forehead. Human normal is cool and somewhat pleasantly so to his skin, but Jim's temperature is lowering from the blood loss. Jim shivers under his hand. "So warm."

Jim grows silent for awhile, he's stopped shivering and Spock knows it isn't a good sign, Jim speaks less and less.

"Captain, you must remain conscious," he tells him.

"Jim," he responds. "My name is Jim."

"Captain," Spock begins again.

"No, call me Jim, Spock. You have the right. You're my friend. My friends call me Jim," he continues.

"I do not believe it would be appropriate," Spock says.

"Wanna know something? Small Earth history lesson. Back before the Federation, when people still believed in magic, they thought names had power. Like in fairy tales, if you knew a fairy's true name you had power over them, to command them," Jim says quietly. "Do you believe in that magic, Spock?"

"No, Jim," Spock concedes. "I don't."

"You see? S'not that hard. One syllable even. Nice and simple. 'S worth it," he says. And they're quiet again. "Spock?"

"Yes?"

"Want to know something?"

"Yes, Jim."

"They also said when you use their true name you have power over them; they belong to you," Jim's voice seems loud in the quiet. "But, I've been yours, if you want me."

Spock looks at him with now blurry vision. He doesn't know anything anymore, the Enterprise could call now or in a few hours, Jim could be dead within that space of time. When he clears his vision, Jim's eyes are closed and his breathing is so soft Spock has to hold his hand in front of Jim's face to be sure he's still breathing. They don't have much time left. Will he lose someone so close to him again?

"Jim," Spock croaks, wetness falling down his face. He shakes Jim a bit in his arms, but the man doesn't stir. "Jim."

It's a little bit and a few of his tears fall onto the human face below him. Strange, he thinks, he didn't know he could cry. "James," he utters instead, stroking a hand through the short brown-blond hair. He wipes the tears he left on Jim's face with his thumb, grazing over a cheekbone. Suddenly, blue eyes are half-open looking back at him.

"Oh, Spock," Jim breathes, reaching up and touching Spock's face, wiping away the tears he finds there. Spock leans into the gentle touch. Jim's eyes unfocus and look somewhere off to his left before his eyes close once again. Spock doesn't know if he's still alive. He doesn't want to check. Because if it's true, Jim would have died in his arms.

It's another hour before the communicator crackles to life on Jim's stomach, where he left it in easy reach. He wonders if it has all been in vain. He answers and a bright white light surrounds him and he's back on the transporter pad of the Enterprise. Jim is whisked out of his arms and Spock can't do anything, he stares at his hands which are covered in Jim's blood. His thoughts seem far away, he must look so undone with dust covering his face and tear tracks running through them.

Scotty took one look at his Commander and knew the Vulcan was in no state to be doing anything. He took pity and guided the docile Vulcan to his quarters and made him wash and use the fresher. Spock seemed to come back to himself a little more and dropped into meditation to get control back once again.

~*~

Jim opened his eyes and blinked a few times, unsure of where he was. The ceiling was white and sound begins to register in his brain, there's a murmur that has awoken him. He glances around. It's Sickbay, when did he get to Sickbay? He moved a little and there's a weight trapping his hand, he looked down. Spock was resting his head on his arm on the biobed, the other hand holding onto Jim's like a lifeline. A noise came from his left and realized that's where the murmurs were coming from, Bones was checking his vitals on the monitors.

Bones looks down at him and Jim gives a wry grin. "Hey, Bones," he whispers because Spock is sleeping.

Bones narrows his eyes at him, mouth opening to give a lecture. Jim raises his free hand quickly putting a finger in a shush in front of his mouth. "How long have I been here?"

"Three days," is Bones' quiet reply. "And the answer to your real question is Spock dropped off 'bout four hours ago. Finally tired himself out enough. That pointy-eared bastard has been here every minute he could. I don't know what ya did to 'im, but you gotta fix it. He's been drivin' me nuts."

"Gotcha, Bones," and the McCoy leaves them alone.

Jim looks at the hand Spock is holding and he gives it a squeeze. He leans over and with his other hand runs it through Spock's fine hair. He may never get this chance again. Spock is up like a shot.

"Hey, Spock," Jim says quickly. "It's okay, I'm fine. We're okay."

Realizing where he is, Spock pulls his hand away and out of Jim's touch. "Captain," he says, pulling himself together.

Jim sighs. "It's Jim, Spock."

"How are you feeling?" Spock asks. "I must alert Dr. McCoy."

"He knows I'm up," Jim responds, figures Spock wouldn't acknowledge anything that happened down on Rhonia. "But you haven't been sleeping."

"I am Vulcan, I require less sleep than a human," is the immediate response.

"I know, Spock, but even you have your limits."

"Very well, Captain. I shall take my leave," and Spock moves to get up.

"Spock, wait!" Jim's hand shoots out to get Spocks' sleeve. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said anything down there. I didn't want to make it awkward between us."

Spock sits back down.

"But, I thought I was going to die down there and I wanted you to know."

"Is that the reason you told me?"

"Not the only one, Spock. You know me," Jim cajoled. "I couldn't go without telling you how I felt because you deserved to know. And I understand if it's not something you want. I won't let it affect us professionally, and I know you're with Uhura so I don't want to complicate anything."

"Jim," Spock interrupts his rant. "You are mistaken, Lieutenant Uhura and I mutually ended our relationship some time ago."

"Oh," and that has Jim quiet, he doesn't know quite what to do.

A warm hand surrounds his and he looks into warm brown eyes.

"Jim," Spock says. And that is enough.