A/N: My first Star Trek fic and it's a shamelessly self-indulgent, un-betaed piece of romantic angst. I feel like I probably shouldn't be posting this, but hey, I've posted worse and someone might actually enjoy this. You never know. And regarding the title… yeah, I had nothing, so I just slapped on a title from an awesome Fleet Foxes song and called it a day.

EDIT (06.01.10): I've had my beta look over this, so it's at least edited for spelling mistakes.

Quiet Houses

"Here it is," Scotty said proudly and pointed at the bathtub. It was filled to the brim with a suspicious amber liquid. His four companions shared worried glances.

"Seriously?" McCoy groaned. "I thought you were shitting us. You're seriously brewing alcohol in Jim's bathtub? Do you know how much trouble this could get you in?"

Scotty waved it off. "The captain loved the idea. Said the tub wasn't getting much use anyway."

"You know this is Spock's bathroom, too, right?" Uhura asked. "What if he reports you?"

"Mr. Spock wouldn't do that," Scotty said easily. "You know how hard the lad works to keep our captain out of trouble."

"This doesn't seem like something he would approve of," Sulu pointed out. "He might just pull the plug on it."

Scotty looked horrified at the thought.

Chekov nodded in agreement. "It does not seem well planned out Mr. Scott. Perhaps you should move your operation elsewhere."

"B-but it's been here for two weeks," Scott retaliated. "And Mr. Spock has said nary a word against it yet."

"We've been on shore leave for two weeks," Sulu said. "Mr. Spock hasn't been on the ship since we landed. And he's due back again toni-"

He was interrupted by a loud voice coming from the captain's bedroom.

"-better not run away from me this time!"

"It's the Captain," Chekov squeaked. "You do have permission to be here, Mr. Scott?"

Scotty paled. "No- not as such. But I didn't think the laddy would mind…"

"-protest captain, I have not been engaging in any such physical activities-"

"Great," McCoy grumbled. "The bloody hobgoblin's here too. We'd better leave. Through Spock's side."

"Don't play oblivious with me; you know damn well what I'm talking about Spock." They could still hear the captain's angry voice loud and clear through the walls and it made them wonder why Spock hadn't noticed their presence yet.

McCoy went to open the doors from Spock's side, only to find it locked.

"Goddamnit, where the hell is the keypad?" McCoy grumbled. "Of all the places to have an archaic lock…"

His companions were too busy listening to the argument unfurling in the captain's quarters to pay attention to his complaining.

"Captain, we should continue this conversation at a later time," Spock protested. "You are intoxicated and liable to say or do things you might later regret."

"It's a little too late for that," Jim said bitterly. "And I'm not drunk, you know I didn't get a chance to drink more than one sip before you came in and dragged me away."

"What's going on?" Sulu mouthed at Uhura, who could only shrug.

"That Andorian female was-"

"She was flirting with me Spock, there's nothing wrong with that."

"Andorians are highly incompatible with humans, were you to mate with her you would not last through the night with your mind intact."

"I wasn't going to mate with her Spock!" The captain sounded hurt. "I'm not an idiot, I have more self control than that. You… I haven't slept with anyone in almost eight months."

The five eavesdroppers in the bathroom glanced at each other in surprise. Jim Kirk, playboy extraordinaire, had gone through eight months without sex?

"I do not see the necessity in pointing this out to me."

There was a loud thump on the wall.

"Don't play this fucking game with me Spock. I'm getting really sick of it. You've been doing this for eight months, and I haven't said a word because I wanted to patient but even I have my limit."

"I do not understand-"

"Do I have to spell it out for you?"

There was a very slight drawl in Jim's voice, and indicator that he had probably had more than that one sip he admitted to.

"It's for you. This… abstinence or whatever you wanna call it, it's because of you. Because I… I needed you to see that I can do it. I can do monogamy and I can do forever too. I want forever."

Spock was silent.

When Jim spoke next his voice sounded impossibly small and hurt, almost broken. "I want you. I always have. You… you're in everything I do. Every fucking breath I take. When you're next to me I feel complete. But I also feel like someone's ripping my heart out, because there's this distance between us that I can't close."

There was a horribly bitter chuckle, a sound that had no business coming out of the mouth of Jim Kirk.

"I'm in love with you. And it's killing me, because you won't even admit you feel the same way."

"Jim." Spock sounded almost as indifferent as always, but there was a tiny crack in his voice that spoke volumes. "I am not capable of these emotions you speak of. I am Vulcan."

This time it wasn't a thud but a hard, solid slap.

All was quiet for a few moments. McCoy glanced at the ashen faces of his coworkers. Chekov's eyes were wet and Uhura had a hand over her mouth.

"Go," the captain finally said. "Leave."


"Let me keep some of my dignity, will you Spock? Go away."


"You don't get to do that!" The captain shouted. "You can't say you don't care and then act like you do! I'm through with your bullshit. I've tried to be understanding and I've tried to be patient and all it's done is fuck me over again and again. I can hardly stand to be around you as it is; don't expect me to keep it up for the rest of our five year mission. I'm not strong enough for that kind of treatment."

McCoy could hear the tears through Jim's voice and it broke his heart. Jim never cried, and to hear his friend reduced to this by a few words from that fucking cold blooded Vulcan…

"I am sorry Jim." Spock's voice was low, almost indistinguishable. "I was not aware of the pain I had caused you. I will resign my post as a first officer onboard the Enterprise as soon as possible."

"No!" Jim sounded horrified.

"Captain, my continued presence here is clearly detrimental to your emotional state. The obvious solution would be to transfer me to a different ship-"

"No," Jim repeated. "Forget what I said. Forget everything. I'll get over you; it'll be like nothing happened. Just… please don't leave the Enterprise."

There was a long pause.

"Very well," Spock said at long last, although he did not sound all that convinced. "We will keep our relationship professional. Our weekly chess games will cease."

"Okay." Jim sounded defeated. "I can do that."

They could hear the doors open and close again. For a while none of them spoke. None of them could speak. The conversation they had just witnessed- listened in on- had not been what any of them would have expected.

Finally Sulu spoke. "Should we leave?"

"I don't know," McCoy replied. "Jim'll be devastated if he finds out we heard… all that."

"He's probably asleep," Uhura whispered. "We haven't heard anything in a while."

The others nodded in agreement. McCoy went to the door and opened it. Jim was sitting by his desk, head buried in his arms. He showed no awareness of their presence, so McCoy concluded he was probably sleeping. He nodded at the others, who followed him out the door.