AN: This is my first ever fanfic, so please be gentle. Reviewing is awesome sauce and will help me write! Star Trek belongs to Gene Roddenberry I am just playing with the characters.

To my two fellow special fanfic authors, you know who you are, thanks for all the encouragement.

Spock slowly drifted into consciousness, doing an automatic systems check on his body and mental facilities. Spock let out a particularly heavy exhale that on any other being would be a groan.

"Lights on Low," Spock murmured to his room's computer. Besides his obvious pounding headache, he had multiple scratches and other superficial marks around his torso and arms. There was also a peculiar burning sensation on his upper right arm. It would appear, as Spock thought rising from the bed, that there had been some sort of incident. His brow furrowed as he struggled to set the events of the previous night into logical order.

It had started with an invitation, one that in the past he had usually declined, but for some reason he accepted. The reason for the different outcome was, of course, due to the Captain. Captain Kirk of the USS Enterprise had often protested Spock's refusal to join members of the crew on their planet side festivities. And if there was one thing to know about Captain James Tiberius Kirk, it was that 'No' wasn't a part of his vocabulary. So Captain Kirk planned and prepared for the next shore leave. Therefore Spock was expecting Kirk's new argument when Captain Kirk called for a private meeting just before shore leave.

Kirk had commandeered the rec room and invited Spock in for a conference 'concerning the crew's interaction balance and overall morale'. For nearly 30 minutes the good Captain laid out his case. Kirk had constructed a logical objection to Spock's refusal, which included charts, statistics and a particularly poor drawing of Spock intermingling with Enterprise's crew. When Spock mentioned quality of the drawing, the Captain merely grinned and said he needed to see the 'real deal' for inspiration.

"The subject matter doesn't concern me. I was simply speculating as to why you chose to use crayons as the medium to work with." Spock paused, "And where did you find the crayons? They aren't listed in the Enterprises' inventory."

The Captain's grin widened into a full blown smirk. "The answer, my dear first officer, should come running down the corridor any second…"

Spock turned his head at the sound of running boots, his eyebrow rising at his Captain's uncanny knack of knowing Dr. McCoy's location. Then again, Spock could always tell when the good doctor was tracking down the Captain, as McCoy was particularly vocal when displeased. And it seemed he was almost always displeased with the Captain over some point or another. However there were certain times when McCoy was more vocal than he normally was. Spock was not overly fond of the noise and of the nonsense the good doctor began spouting when disturbed. McCoy was a man of loud opinions, mostly Spock deemed flawed and illogical. It was a point of friction between the doctor and himself. The sound of approaching boots grew louder and with it, he could discern what McCoy was saying.

"Goddamnit Jim! Where in the hell are you so I can wring your neck?" McCoy thundered as he ran down the hall. Spock sighed at the sheer idiocy of McCoy's proclamation.

The Captain laughed and ducked behind Spock. "I recommend another hiding place, Captain. I do believe the doctor will be able to see you." Captain Kirk poked him in the side before saying, "That's not the point, Spock."

Spock opened his mouth to ask for clarification when the Enterprise's chief medical officer stormed into the room. "Jim, you yella bellied coward, I see you! Don't think I don't! You took them didn't you?"

"Took what?" Captain Kirk asked innocently peeping around Spock's shoulder.

"Don't play that with me Jim!" McCoy raged, "I know you took it, I see you used 'em too!" He motioned to the ill-drawn portrait of Spock holding hands with his fellow officers.

"You mean to say Doctor, that the Captain stole your set of crayons?"

McCoy sputtered, "They ain't MY crayons exactly. They were a gift!" Spock pondered a moment as McCoy fished out the hypo he had stashed in his bag. He began stalking towards Spock and Kirk, a wicked gleam in his eye as he focused his gaze on Kirk's neck.

"Captain, did you take Dr. McCoy's crayons?" Spock asked, craning his head sideways to look at Kirk. McCoy cast a wary glance at Spock and paused briefly, readjusting his grip on his hypo.

"I figured I could use them a bit and then replace him and he would never notice?" Spock made a harrumphing noise in his throat. "Guess not, huh?"

As McCoy lunged to grab Kirk, the captain darted around Spock's other side and made a wild dash down to the door and out to the hallway. McCoy took off behind him screaming out a list of threats, "Jimmy, come back here this minute or I am going to-" Spock sighed as the door closed.

If only the Captain was as enthusiastic about his paperwork. He turned to ponder the presentation. Aside from the drawing, the Captain did make a few valid points.

The Enterprise had docked at San Francisco for a few supplies and maintenance. As best as Spock could tell, the moral of the crew was one of pent up excitement. The crew was also to submit paperwork on their last mission, which went quite smoothly. However, they had been harried to finish at breakneck speed and a sense of exhaustion prevailed the crew. Spock understood that the need to 'unwind' and to 'kick one's feet back' was nescessary to maintain a healthy functioning crew.

Spock peered at one graph in particular. He had not factored into consideration on how the crew vicariously took relaxation through commanding officers. Spock shifted through a survey regarding crew members opinions of their superior officers. Shaking his head at the phrasing of some of the questions, (Why ya think the officers should hang with the ensigns? What ya think the officers do for fun? What do you think they SHOULD do to lighten up?) he nonetheless found some of the answers to be very surprising. He hadn't realized the many of his fellow Starfleet crew thought he didn't care to know them or that the officers should unwind with the rest. He had made it a point to memorize every crewmembers name and essential information that was recorded in Starfleet's database.

Sighing, Spock set the information down. Working in close contact with emotional humans was sometimes draining. For instance, although Spock hailed their last mission a sound success, the Captain had frequently called it boring. Then again, Spock mused as he exited the rec room, the Captain thrives on adventure and excitement. If there was one thing the Captain was good at, it was thinking on his feet. It was one of many starling traits that Spock uncovered during the ten-month voyage to the new Vulcan colony. They had been playing escort to various ships with cargo and had more downtime than normal. It was during trip that Spock and Kirk managed not only to settle past discrepancies but also become friends. And the reason, Spock thought with some irony, was one of the only relaxation activities that he 'unwound' too. It was here the Captain made his most convincing point as it was the beginning of his own friendship with the Captain. The reason for their budding friendship was greatly due to chess.

FLASHBACK TIME!

After the events with Nero, it was quite a while before Spock and Kirk could stand each other's presence. Spock had often recalled his future self's words with more than a little degree of skepticism. Kirk, when he had a trying day debating Spock, muttered that the old dude was senile and wack. It was during a chess match with Ensign Chekov, one that they had been playing in the corner of the rec room, which Captain Kirk first spoke to Spock of matters other than work.

"He might look innocent and cute, Mr. Spock, but I do believe that Pavel just took your queen." Captain Kirk had said, not bothering to look up from his PADD.

"Captain, perhaps you should refrain from making comments about a game that in which you are neither the player nor the judge." Spock calmly replied, moving his rook in a calculated defense of his queen.

"Suit yourself, Spock, but you just lost." Kirk shrugged, tapping his PADD and frowning at the screen. Spock looked at the board, tilting his head to the side. "Captain, I fail to see how I lost this game, clearly you are in the wrong."

"Perhaps the Keptain is thinking of another game, I too don't see how I vuold vin this game." Sighing, Kirk rose from the couch and sauntered over to the duo.

"And if you are wrong, Mr. Spock? Care to make a bet on it?" Kirk said before turning to Chekov, "I might not know everything, wonderkid, but I know what chess is. Let me finish playing Mr. Spock and I will teach you how to win."

Not only did Kirk take Spock's queen but to the amazement of both Spock and Chekov, he also won the entire game. Spock wasn't pleased to be defeated, especially at the seemingly careless hand of a lucky bystander. "Captain, you are completely reckless, unpredictable and seem to have no strategy or logical patterns. Your win is illogical."

"Yup and I just whooped your Vulcan ass." Kirk said as he began to put away the pieces. Slightly stunned, Spock reached out and plucked his fallen queen from Kirk's pile of captured pieces. "I think, Captain, I would like a rematch."

Kirk paused, "You want me to whoop your ass again Spock? A little masochistic aren't ya?"

Spock stiffened slightly. "I believe that your victory was a fluke. I would like another match to prove my theory."

Captain Kirk laughed, "Alright Spock, but," he said as he set the pawn he was putting away in Spock's hand, "you have to set the board."

To Spock's growing amazement and frustration, Kirk's victory wasn't a fluke. Kirk was an inventive, impulsive and brilliant strategist at chess and when Spock lost again he automatically began setting the pieces up for another game. Kirk grinned. "Really Commander, do you like losing that much?"

Spock hesitated, holding a black pawn between his fingers, "It isn't about losing or winning Captain, and I have never encountered someone with your unique style of chess playing. I would like to play you again to see if my skills at chess can match and potentially surpass yours. I believe that they can."

Kirk smirked. "So you are basically saying I got mad skills huh? And you want to see if you can beat me." Spock frowned as Kirk plucked the black pawn from his fingers and placed it in the box. "Well ok, I am down for playing again but not right at the moment. I got a hot date with McCoy and some whiskey. He lost a bet about an incoming nurse…" Kirk suddenly grinned at Spock. "Speaking of bets, you lost yours! I beat you twice! I totally won the bet."

Spock closed his eyes in exasperation. "Since I did not wager anything Captain, there was no bet."

"Just what every loser says. " Kirk replied tossing another piece into the box, "You totally lost, twice, and I won. And what do I win…." Kirk paused from cleaning up and grinned down at his PADD, "but a get out of free paperwork for a day pass! I will send you the files and stuff later."

Spock felt a headache coming on. "Captain, there is a valid reason for such paperwork, it is standard produce and protocol…."

"blah blah blah, I know Spock, but you lost so no whining." Kirk interrupted. "Clean up the rest for me? I got to go, meet me here same time tomorrow for another game?"

Sighing, Spock watched Captain Kirk walk whistling out of the room. Chekov and a few other members of the crew watched awed as Kirk exited. Spock ignored the gawking crew and decided to set up the board instead of putting it away. Spock did not like losing. As he arranged the pieces on the board, his mouth twitched into a determined line, he would be prepared for the next game.

One game led to another and another. Sometimes Kirk won, sometimes Spock did. It didn't take long for Spock to begin to look forward to their nightly chess matches. During play they began conversation on a variety of subjects. Despite his sometimes devil may care slacker attitude, Kirk was surprisingly thoughtful and had an uncanny insight that Spock came to respect. When their nights were interrupted due to pressing duties or other such events Spock found himself feeling disappointed.

When he mentioned that to McCoy he snorted, "Jesus, of course your disappointed, but you're not getting sympathy from me, no way. Think how I feel when Jimmy blows me off because one of your little games is dragging on and he wants to finish it. It plan sucks when a friend has to cancel, but at lest Jim is during it because of work." He scowled at Spock, "And not because of some stupid board game."

Spock came to a starling revelation as Bones began to rant and rave about 'his Jimmy' leaving him for some 'hob goblin and a sexy nurse'. The Captain was his friend. Fascinating.