A/N: This may be a bit disjointed. I wrote most of it in one sitting, then went to see Toy Story 3 with my friends, then wrote the rest of this fic while still hyped up and giggling like a four year old on a sugar high. Fun! I also didn't read this over before posting it, which is… probably not all that smart.
This might be a bit (very) dialogue heavy. In fact, one part is nothing but dialogue. I really gotta work on that.
A Helping Hand aka Five people Gaila pulled out of Jim's bed (figuratively) and one person she pushed into his arms (literally)
"So what do the Captain's quarters look like?"
Jim smiles and mentally congratulates himself. The Andorian girl is pretty; stunning even. Her combination of blue skin and white hair make her look strangely exotic – the antennae don't hurt either. And the best part is that she's clearly interested in him too. Or so says the almost predator-like grin on her face.
It's about time too. Jim hasn't gotten laid since becoming the Captain of the Enterprise a few months ago and while the benefits are well worth the sacrifice, it does cause some frustration. It's made him consider breaking his rule of never sleeping with his crew a few times.
But he's on Shore Leave now and he will never see this girl again after tonight. It's the perfect opportunity.
Suddenly there's a light hand on Jim's shoulder. The Andorian girl's grin falls from her face and as Jim turns around he can see why. Behind him stands Gaila, looking stunning in a little black number and a thousand-watt smile.
"Hey sugar," she says in her sweetest voice. "You almost done here? I've been waiting for you all night, y'know."
Jim turns around to explain himself, but the Andorian girl slaps him and storms off.
"What the hell was that?" He asks angrily.
Gaila shrugs. "Think of it as a favor. You shouldn't be sleeping around with cheap girls like her honey; you're too good for that."
"No I'm not!" Jim insists. "I'm way cheaper than she is!"
Gaila just gives him a pitying look.
"I don't like him."
Jim glances up from his PADD. Gaila's arms are crossed and there's a mean look in her eyes. "Who?"
"That Mitchell guy," she says and gestures across the room, where Gary Mitchell is working on a report.
"That's Lieutenant Commander Mitchell guy to you," Jim mutters, not really caring. It's useless anyway; Gaila doesn't even call him Captain unless Spock is present. He puts down the PADD. "Why not?"
"Have you seen the way he looks at you?" She hisses, as if that explains everything.
"Uh… with his eyes?" Jim ventures.
Gaila smacks him on the back of his head. Someday he's going to have her brought up on disciplinary charges. "No. Like you're a piece of meat. He's got no right to look at you like that."
Jim raises an eyebrow. "Really? You think he's interested in me?"
"That's not what I meant to-"
Jim pats her on the back (perhaps a bit harder than necessary. His head does kind of hurt) and jogs off to the other side of the room. Nine months and counting since he's had sex with anyone but his right hand (and his left, when he's feeling particularly adventurous), and Gary is due for a transfer in a couple of weeks. It's a golden opportunity and this time he's not going to let Gaila ruin it.
Later that same day Gary Mitchell contracts food poisoning and has to spend the remainder of his two weeks on the Enterprise in Sick Bay. Apparently it's very messy, stuff coming out of both ends. That's all the information Bones is willing to divest and frankly, it's more than Jim needed to know.
Gaila is suspiciously cheerful during the next few days. Jim reconsiders those disciplinary charges, if only for the sake of his poor, exhausted right hand.
"We should have sex."
Gaila doesn't even blink. "No."
"Why not?" And no, Jim is not whining. "We've done it before and we're both single, good-looking people."
"True," Gaila agrees. "Still. No."
"Gaila, I haven't gotten any in ten months and it's all because you keep scaring away whoever shows even the remotest interest in me."
"Those people are only interested in your body."
Jim raises his eyebrows. "So? That's really all I'm looking for in a one-night stand, you know."
"Well, you shouldn't be looking for one-night stands then. It's not good for you."
Jim laughs in disbelief. "And it is for you?"
"I'm different," Gaila insists. "I'm comfortable with myself."
"And I'm not?"
Again, she gives him a pitying look. "Remember that time I told you I thought I loved you?""
"And you said 'that's so weird'."
Gaila crosses her arms. "So, does that sound like someone who's comfortable with himself?"
"That's not- that's not even… you didn't even mean it!"
"Not back then," Gaila admits. "But have you ever been seriously told that?"
Jim shrugs. "Does it matter?"
Gaila rolls her eyes. "Of course it does. It sounds to me like you need to know what it feels like to be in a real relationship."
"What gives you the right to decide that for me?" Jim demands.
"You're my little brother. If you can't do what's right for you, then the responsibility falls on me." She sounds like it's the most natural thing in the world.
"Last I checked I only had one sibling."
"It's a figure of speech," Gaila informs him. "You are like a little brother to me. So even if I did support you sleeping around, I still wouldn't have sex with you. It would be too creepy."
Jim isn't sure whether to take that as a compliment or an insult.
"Oh Jim, no!"
"I know I said I wanted to see you fall in love, but not with him!"
"What are you talking about?"
"He's straight, honey. You shouldn't waste your time pining after you straight best friend."
"Wait, are you talking about Bones?"
"He's too old for you anyway. And too grumpy."
"Oh god, you are."
"Although he is kind of hot, in a scruffy, rugged kind of way."
"Please stop talking."
"And that accent just makes you weak in the knees, doesn't it?"
"I'm not hearing this."
"Not to mention those talented hands… such strong, steady hands…" A beat. "I know it's hard, but you need to stop thinking about him, okay? Make it easy on yourself."
"I'm not in love with Bones! But I'm beginning to think you are!"
"Oh, sweetie, let it go. It hurts now but it'll be so much better in the long run."
"I hate you so much."
The Atari prince is interested in him, Jim can tell. And so can anyone within a hundred mile radius, for that matter. Continuous touching in near-inappropriate places, comments just laced with innuendo and looks that aren't so much undressing Jim as eye-fucking him into the pavement.
If he weren't Captain and if this wasn't a delicate diplomatic mission Jim totally would have gone for it. The Atari prince isn't exactly repulsive either. He's tall and handsome and carries himself with a staggering amount of self-confidence. But Jim isn't an idiot and he's not going to risk the mission just for the sake of his libido.
That evening the Atari throw a banquet to celebrate their joining the Federation. The entire command team is invited, along with some engineers and security personnel. Jim is seated with the prince on his left side and Spock on his right. The flirting that had been going on throughout the day is now amped up to eleven and next to him Jim can feel Spock radiating tension (and what he's got to be so tense about anyway? It's not like he's the one being inappropriately hit on).
When the prince's hand slides up his thigh Jim nearly flinches away (but he doesn't. He might not want to risk the mission by sleeping with the prince, but he also doesn't want to ruin it by rejecting him. It's a delicate situation that Jim frankly has no idea how to get out of).
"How would you like it were I to show you the palace gardens?" The prince asks softly, leaning unnecessarily close to Jim.
Jim nearly cries with relief as Gaila's panicked voice interrupts the situation before he has to take any action.
"What is it Lieutenant?" He asks as seriously as he can, considering that the prince's hand is still on his thigh, resting uncomfortably close to his crotch area.
"Something came up on the ship, Mr. Scott needs your help," Gaila replies breathlessly.
It takes Jim a moment to catch on. "Oh… right. Well, I apologize for this interruption, but I'm afraid I must go."
The prince looks livid. His hand on Jim's thigh tightens and Jim can hear a strange noise coming from Spock's direction. Almost like a growl. "This is most unusual!"
"I am terribly sorry to divert the Captain's attention away from you," Gaila says and she almost sounds genuinely upset. "But I would be more than happy to keep you company until the Captain returns." She allows the remorse on her face to melt into a coy smile.
The prince grins back. "Well, I would never reject the company of a lovely lady such as yourself." His hand is suddenly nowhere near Jim's thigh.
Jim stands up and Gaila takes his seat. 'Thank you,' he mouths to her. She nods at him very slightly.
It's the first time Jim is glad for her interruptions.
It is infuriating, watching them dance around each other. Gaila doesn't even think Jim is aware of it yet, he can be so incredibly dense sometimes. After all, he still hasn't realized that his yeoman is madly in love with him (and yes Gaila has considered her, but she rejected the thought almost immediately. Janice's love for Jim is more akin to hero-worship than actual romantic love anyway, and they have no chemistry what so ever).
But Jim and Mr. Spock- that isn't just chemistry, that's fireworks. Gaila hadn't even been aware of how passionate Vulcans could be, in their own secretive way (although most of Mr. Spock's passion could probably be contributed to his human mother). Seeing those two together on the bridge is electrifying. And Gaila knows they care for each other too; she's seen how worried Jim gets when Mr. Spock is in Sick Bay and how Mr. Spock always makes sure Jim eats properly. They go out of their way to spend time together.
It's so cute it's almost disgusting.
But Jim remains as obtuse as ever. At least Mr. Spock seems to realize what's going on, but he's so repressed he'd rather suffer in silence for the rest of their five year mission than actually do something about it.
So it all falls on Gaila. She really is generous to be spending so much time making sure those two find happiness with each other, but if there's any cause worth all that effort it's love. And Jim is going to find it, even if Gaila has to shove it down his throat. The things she'll go through for family.
With a plan on her mind and a lucky pat on Pavel's curly little head (it's become somewhat of a tradition on the Enterprise to pat the young navigator's head for luck before strenuous missions, a trend Gaila is proud to admit she started) she's ready to go.
Now, when it comes to people like Jim and Spock she has to be careful to find just the right balance between subtle and blatant, to make sure they know what's going on without embarrassing them.
She spots them in the hallway just outside of Sick Bay, Spock berating Jim for some stunt or another he pulled on the last away mission. Gaila's stopped bothering keeping track of them all. Jim doesn't look very dismayed though, in fact he has a look of fond amusement on his face. Oh yeah, he's smitten. Now to make him realize it in the most cunning way possible…
With a loud THUMP Gaila rams into Spock, causing him to lose his balance and fall over and into Jim's ready arms. But Spock's heavier than he looks and so he and Jim both topple over, landing in a heap on the floor.
"What the hell?" Comes Jim's angry exclamation.
"Oh, I'm so sorry, I didn't see you there Commander," Gaila says as nonchalantly as she possibly can. It's pretty damn nonchalant, in her humble opinion.
"You rammed into him!" Jim argues. Then it's as if he suddenly realizes that Spock is lying on top of him, because he clams up and goes completely red in the face. "Spock?"
"I apologize Captain," Spock mutters, his cheeks tinted with a faint emerald color. He stands up and offers Jim his hand. Jim takes it and Gaila has to bite her tongue to keep from grinning.
"I'm so, so sorry," Gaila repeats gleefully. Jim has stood up, but he has yet to let go of Spock's hand. "It's a good thing the Captain was there to break your fall, huh?"
They both stare at her, as if neither one is sure of what to say. "But I really must get going," she continues. "I have an emergency… thing down in Engineering."
She jogs, but not before grinning and adding: "And you might want to let go of his hand, Captain."
Jim drops Spock's hand like a hot potato and somehow gets impossibly redder. It's amazing how quickly that human skin changes color.
Gaila practically skips down the halls to Engineering and she doesn't even care. The cards are laid and… she forgets how the rest of that metaphor goes, but it's all good. Jim and Spock can figure out the rest of it themselves. And if they don't, well then Gaila knows plenty of other crewmembers happy to give their command team a little push in the right direction.
Now to deal with the Pavel and Sulu situation…