Disclaimer: I do not own Star Trek and make no money from this work.

A/N: This work had not been reviewed by a beta. It has been tweaked right up to posting—all errors are my own.


He never looked at her. Well, not the way the other men—and more than a few women—looked at her. Leer would be a more apt descriptor of the way the eyes of most met her. His gaze was cool and detached and minimal for all it fell upon, including her.

If he spoke to her it was Empire business: controlled, concise and with an almost robotic indifference.

She tried to make conversation with him once, when the bridge was all but deserted and no scheming ears were close enough to wonder at her attempts to draw him to her. She eased her way to his side, ignored his mention of an error he claimed she'd made and dared to touch the cuff of his uniform jacket, her thumb momentarily meeting the pale skin of his wrist as she asked him why he didn't tell her she was an attractive young lady or ask if she'd ever been in love, (as if such a dangerous emotion dared to breathe itself to life in their world). He had touched the long fingers of his hand to the inky hued silk caressing the skin of his neck, displaying more of his deceptively subtle looking wrist to her in the process and did not meet her impetuous eyes as he seemed to consider her words. He dropped his arm to rest once more upon the arm of the command chair. He told her to pose such comments and queries to her was illogical…that effectively ended the conversation.

So it came as a surprise to her, considering his past apathy, to open her eyes and find his dark, dilated ones staring back at her, his body mere centimeters away in the dim, seductive light of the clandestine room.

He thought her no more agreeable aesthetically than any other female he had encountered in his life.

She was a valuable and skilled officer, who was rumored to be as equally adept with her body and the blades she hid upon it.

He found it acceptable to watch her when the occasion presented itself in the mess hall or one of the many recreation rooms, though none were aware of his covert study of her, least of all the woman herself. She'd come upon him once, as he sat alone in a deserted rec. room playing his lyre in the waning hours of the ship's night, and surprisingly begun to hum and create her own words to the obscure Vulcan melody he played as she went about getting herself some tea. It had brought to his mind her recent behavior on the bridge, asking him why he did not tell her she was an attractive young lady or ask if she'd ever been in love.

He found it illogical to state what was obvious about her appearance, and would not disclose that she was the only woman on the ship that he thought of as a lady, as disclosing such thoughts could be dangerous for them both and he did not fully understand the cause of the thought itself. And he did not want to know if she had ever been in love as he did not believe it useful to seethe over an individual it might not be within his power to eliminate. She had brushed her hand along his shoulder as she left the room that night and he had almost moved to take her but let uncertainty stop him. He could not be viewed by anyone as weak, as someone who wanted. And there was the issue of how he wanted her. He could not know if she desired to be touched in the way in which he wished to have her. The moment and the touch as she'd passed behind him—like so many others they'd shared—had been fleeting and she had not paused in her steps toward the door or spared a look back.

His perceptions of those encounters were turned on their heads and he found he could not draw breath when his eyes slipped across her figure in the low light across the parlor, when he discovered she too was in this place…when he became aware of what she sought.

He had been seated in a large antique wing back chair, his legs stretched out before him, with a look of disinterest as women and men alike were paraded before him, each promising hours of pleasure as they danced around his form, bringing their lips to his elegant ear to divulge in barely audible words their more illicit talents. When his hostess saw a sudden flicker of interest light his eyes, she followed his curiously enamored gaze and then brought forth all those she had who bore a resemblance to the one who'd provoked his intriguing response.

His gaze flitted, with an air of annoyance, over the three dark skinned humans the hostess proudly thrust at him, an apparent result of the woman noting his interest in what lay across the parlor.

"I desire that one." He said, letting his eyes settle again on the woman reclining in the next room and making his displeasure at the madams' attempt to offer lesser goods infuse his words. The woman his eyes had set upon, had her back to him presently, but the small glimpse of her face he had caught had stunned him, the similarity was remarkable, if he were not sitting in the elite brothel he would be certain it was her. The woman's hair was longer, partially pulled back and her body was covered far more by the dress she wore than the form he admired daily but beyond that…he wondered suddenly if his desire for her had begun to distort his perception. He pushed the thought away; he would be a fool not to indulge his carefully contained—at least up until now—fantasies. He would lay with her multiple times, maybe even extend his leave. He did not want to know her name, he did not care what it was; he would call her Nyota.

The hostess looked at the woman in question again. "My apologies for your disappointment, Sir, but the one you seek to enjoy is a client, not a courtesan." She looked somewhat regretful, not only for the Vulcan's growing dissatisfaction with what she had offered him thus far but that she didn't, in fact, have the woman he sought among her offerings, knowing she would most assuredly earn the house a great deal. The Vulcan was not the first to request her company in the short time she'd been there.

He continued to stare across the room, his interest only seeming to intensify with the madam's words, pondering the—only seconds ago—ridiculous possibility that it truly was her. He waved his hand vaguely at the bodies still before him, indicating his desire for their immediate removal.

After a long uncomfortable silence, for the hostess at least, as the Vulcan appeared more engaged and animated in his examination of the dark skinned beauty in the next room than he had been all evening, she addressed him. "This is a place of business, Sir. Make a selection from what we are able to provide or go elsewhere. We do not tolerate loitering." The words were bold, but spoken with a telling tremor and the madam visibly shrunk back when the Vulcan turned his suddenly icy glare on her.

He gestured with his hand to a female who happened by while shifting his gaze back to what he actually wanted and waited.

"We have rooms for your…"

"I will be serviced here, or not at all. Do you value my credits or not?"

He produced a card with an obscenely high credit value and it was swiftly accepted. He rose and moved to a different seat affording him a better view of the woman draped across the lush divan while keeping himself concealed from her. The female he selected knelt by his legs and he widened them and allowed her to insinuate herself between them. He all but sighed in unchecked irritation as he said "You may use your mouth." knowing his member would remain flaccid.

She was surprised when her host said it was possible to produce what she desired. She had been joking when she verbalized what she had long wanted, but had not ever had. She was tired of all the bullshit, all the disappointment. She wanted what she wanted and at this point was willing to pay for it.

But the man immediately added an addendum to his statement, informing her that her selection was here of his own choosing, not an employee exactly, but one who offered his services only to those he approved of, as he was here to research and satisfy his own curiosities. The establishment allowed the unheard of arrangement, because upon the rare occurrence he acquiesced to those who requested his kind, the house retained all the credits paid for the encounter. And the charge was exorbitant. Her host had issued the information out of habit, though he knew it was unnecessary to share his usual warning, certain the man in question would not hesitate to give himself over to the whims of the beautiful woman before him.

He could feel frustration from the Caitian female tugging and lapping at his still limp organ with her mouth.

"Enough." He said under his breath so no one else would hear while he tapped her shoulder lightly with his hand. "I am sure you have deduced I do not want you. Find something to cleanse me of your touch, replace my clothing and try not to aggravate me further with your presence." The Caitian hastily complied.

He watched the woman he truly wanted, through the archway. He felt his body coil with tension when her host returned, bringing with him a tall male at his elbow for her perusal. The selected male lingered for a moment in the doorway before he nodded his approval to the proprietor that he would indeed make himself available to the woman who had requested him. The host receded into the shadows as the one prostituting his body for his own purposes stepped forward and pushed back the hood that concealed his face to allow her to study him. After a moment, though she did not gesture for him, he proceeded forward to kneel beside her where she rested on the settee, looking into her face with unveiled anticipation. She did not look in his eyes but seemed to focus rather on the precise line of his upswept brow. Her host spoke from his darkened corner to inform her that her intended for the evening, if she indeed wished to continue, was called Sorin. And the man sitting in silent surveillance of the unfolding scene—who's eyes had, at first, flown wide when they set upon the male escort's distinguishing features—swiftly narrowed like a falcons honed in on his prey; his dark, long-shackled emotions straining against their master's suddenly splintering hold. A Vulcan…she had requested a Vulcan.

He knew as he watched…it was undeniably her, the longer he had studied her, the more patently obvious it had become. She had covered her body. She had altered her hair. And now Lt. Nyota Uhura had a Vulcan kneeling beside her. He waited, watching and listening and letting the strange, unnamed thing that so often whispered to him in her presence stir and stretch within him, letting what had only been consideration and contemplation become irrevocable truth.

He saw Nyota frown slightly, surely startled at the expressiveness of Sorin's face and she did not move but simply stared at the Vulcan for a time. When she at last extended her hand slowly toward him, Sorin anticipated her wish and bowed his head to her. Her unknown observer became rigid with tension and then relaxed, almost smirking at the way the bemused frown transformed into a deep, disgruntled one on Nyota's face the second her fingers smoothed through Sorin's tresses. She was clearly displeased with the Vulcan's hair, which appeared—from his vantage point—to have a coarse texture reminiscent of Sarek's, while his own was like the silken locks of his mother.

Nyota's hand dropped to her lap and Sorin raised his head to look at her, unquestionably sensing her displeasure. "Speak." She said, reclining back. "I want to hear your voice."

"What would you have me say to you, Miss?"

Nyota's mouth twisted in irritation as the first word fell from lips, her eyes closed in indignation. Evidently the man's voice was not to her liking either. Her silent spectator fought the urge to smile; feeling pleasure as it became clear the much-sought-after Vulcan male provided by her host was—apparently to her—infuriatingly inadequate and would not meet her needs. Sorin was not what she desired. As he looked on, he allowed himself to feel the full measure of his gratification at knowing with one hundred percent certainty he could give her what she needed because he was what she desired.

"You may go," she said, drawing up her legs abruptly to swing them over the divan and depart. Sorin was bewildered and it showed. He laid his hand upon her thigh causing the man who watched them from the adjacent room to swiftly rise to his feet.

"I can please you, Miss." Sorin murmured. "Please allow me to give you the pleasure you desire."

She looked at him skeptically causing Sorin to want her even more; he had never been rejected before, ever. She reached for him again, this time touching her fingers to the shell of his ear, letting the pads smooth slowly to its fine point. Sorin shuddered and closed his eyes at the contact and the wave of emotion and need that came with it, while she fought back, disgusting, embarrassing tears at her humiliating weakness for a man who didn't want her and breathing that humiliation to life by quietly stating, "You are not, Spock."

Hidden in darkness, Spock's eyes closed. Irrevocable truth.

Looking at her at last with perfect clarity, Spock could see her intense longing—could sense her body's almost overwhelming need for unmet release, for a shaft of light in this Empire darkened world, for more than she'd be given in this life. "I feel your need for him," Sorin told her, "Your emotions for him run deep. Have you lost him? Your bondmate."

A tear slipped down Nyota's cheek, and she did not answer.

"Close your eyes, Mistress. I will be whoever you desire me to be." Sorin motioned with a flick of his hand for the room to be cleared of the few other clients who had begun to delay leaving in hopes of watching what was to come. He moved to the end of the settee, ghosting his hand over her legs as he went, taking her silence as agreement. He removed her shoes and laid small kisses upon her feet.

Nyota lay back and Spock watched another tear slip down her cheek. Sorin began to kiss her toes, causing her to squirm.

Spock began to shake; unable to watch another man touch Nyota in what he now knew was his place, unable to continue to stand idly by.

Sorin's eyes drifted shut and Spock knew the man was letting Nyota's emotions wash over him, unhindered by any mental shield as he began to run his sensitive hands up her legs. Spock entered the room and moved in silence to Nyota's side, kneeling beside where her shoulders lay. He reached for her, grasped her wrist lightly, lifted her hand while he bowed his head as Sorin had done, and then carefully pushed her relaxed fingers through the silky hair of his head. Nyota took a ragged breath at the contact, her fingers immediately flexing and tightening in the soft locks, her eyes startling open to meet Spock's dark gaze. Their consuming stare held and time suspended for them both before she broke their gaze and let her astonished eyes sweep greedily over his countenance, lingering on the soft lips, perfectly framed by his enticing rough beard. Spock slipped his hand beneath her dress where the material was parted by a long slit that extended to her hip as he drifted forward to brush his lips to hers and rested his hand tentatively to her sex. She was warm but not wet, Sorin's touch engendering as little response in her as the Caitian had in him.

Sorin, completely immersed in Nyota's emotions and the arousing feel of her skin under his sensitive hands, was oblivious to Spock's presence. But when he heard Nyota's quiet gasp and felt an intense shift in her emotions he opened his eyes to see a Vulcan, in the uniform of the Imperial fleet, on his knees where he had been moments ago. Before Sorin could consider the consequences of his actions, the deepest parts of his Vulkanian blood spiked possessively for the female before him and he reacted to the encroaching male's presence with venom, issuing an infuriated hiss of dissent.

Spock turned his face slowly to look at Sorin; his voice low and threatening when he said, "That…was a grievous error."

Nyota's body trembled, her breathing hitched and her eyes slipped closed, the voice that she'd longed to hear finally filling her ears; its menacing tone failing to register with her as she was lost immediately in the rich resonance of it, which only poured over her with frequency in her dreams, like the rarest Sarian brandy. She sighed and pulled her lower lip between her teeth.

At his words, Spock felt the first silken show of Nyota's desire against the hand that was still pressed, now more firmly, to her sex; the fingers of the other brushing slowing down the curve of her jaw.

"If you value your life, Sorin, you will remove your hands from what belongs to me and depart from this place. I suggest you take advantage of my present inclination to be merciful as the phenomenon is atypical and I am sure will be brief." Spock said, his voice still dark as he continued to pin his fellow Vulcan with his steely glare while he began to gently glide his fingers along Nyota's increasingly wet center with the intoxicating understanding that her body was readying itself just for him.

"She came here for me." Sorin said evenly, his hand still resting obstinately upon Nyota's ankles.

Spock's hand lashed out, his fingers slick with Nyota's arousal but unyielding as they gripped Sorin's wrist, applying pressure until the courtesan relinquished his hold on both of Nyota's long limbs, enabling her to draw them up and under her, her eyes never leaving Spock's form. His disciplined mind could sense through the contact with Sorin that the man's foolish impression of the situation was that his challenger was, like him, a Vulcan, and though an officer of the Empire, should and would bow to the logic that Uhura had come here and selected him. Spock could see that the compelling emotions that Sorin had experienced from Nyota in the short time he'd been in contact with her had easily convinced him she would be worth fighting to obtain. Sorin thought she was so open; he would slip into her mind just as he slipped into her young, strong body, the latter enabling him to truly let himself go as he rutted repeatedly into her.

"No…she did not." Spock replied, his voice dangerously calm. But before Sorin could form his words of rebuttal or Spock could unleash the building rage he felt from his rapidly fraying control, Nyota took the hand Spock was not currently using to crush Sorin's arm from where it had shifted from her face to grasp her hand fiercely and eased it under her dress to touch it, as his other hand had, against her sex. Spock's hold on Sorin did not relent, nor did his eyes look away from him as he felt Nyota manipulate his fingers to her satisfaction and push two long digits inside her depths with a moan and the murmur of his name.

Sorin's shock at hearing Spock's name showed plainly on his face and when Spock unexpectedly released him to turn to Nyota and languorously crawl over her body—the officer's focus immediately reverting back to her—he stumbled backwards before swiftly rising to his feet, envy creeping over his features.

"Bring a basin of warm water."

Sorin nodded mutely to the request from Spock, although Spock did not turn his eyes to him as he uttered the order and exited the room . He returned shortly thereafter with the item requested and placed it down at the foot of the divan. He began to swiftly back out of the room, not turning his eyes from the couple tangled on the settee, desiring to take one last opportunity to look on the woman he could not have.

"You will wait, Sorin." Spock muttered between kisses to Nyota's lips.

Spock thrust his fingers leisurely in and out of Nyota's body—her sex still concealed beneath the sheath of her dress—marveling at how tight she was around his fingers, how she would feel when he finally entered her with his rapidly hardening, and infinitely larger cock, while she laid soft, tentative kisses upon his mouth. He understood entirely why Sorin would risk violence for her after tasting a sliver of the tenor of her thoughts. Nyota's emotions for Spock were stunning to him in their intensity, and her aching longing for a measure of something tender…something true—painfully beautiful. Spock knew the instant his skin met hers he would never give her up; their needs and desires were perfectly matched. He would have her just as he had long desired to.

Nyota began to pant into his mouth, gripping his hair where her hands were tangled in it, while leveraging herself with her feet, pushing herself harder onto his deep thrusting hand, and then tensing and gasping moments later as she continued grinding, coming against him with a soft sob. Spock could hear Sorin's shallow breaths behind him as he pulled his hand from Nyota's still trembling sex, slick and glistening in the low light with her sated need. Spock continued his punishment of the man, as he sat back on his heels and allowed Nyota to free his manhood and take him in her mouth, a contented moan of satisfaction flowing from her like a purr. She lowered her body from the settee to gain more freedom in her movements over him, lavishing her mouths attentions on him with the greatest of care; wonderfully willingly…lovingly. Spock absently ran his tongue in lazy sweeps from between his parted lips along his hand, tasting the essence she'd coated it with while watching her…enthralled by her movements, his other hand resting affectionately against her head; not guiding…just touching.

When he felt he could no longer refrain from thrusting into Nyota's mouth, Spock gathered her up and centered her above his hard length. He waited as she wrapped her legs about his slim waist, and then guided himself to her entrance. Nyota inhaled sharply as his head pushed in and he held her closer, nuzzling into her neck as a way of beseeching her to trust that he would not hurt her, shaking with restraint while working his way into her small quivering body, little by little. She was no virgin, but her lovers had most definitely been few and clearly nowhere near his length and girth. She was keening by the time he was fully seated within her. He paused, her tightness was breathtaking, her body's silken lubricant—luxurious in its abundance.

Spock focused and steadied his breathing. "Sorin, you will now clean my woman's feet of your mouth's attentions and then leave us. Inform your masters upon your departure that I will not tolerate being disturbed."

Sorin obediantly stepped forward, his penis engorged and throbbing painfully with want and knelt so as to reach Nyota's feet where they were twined around Spock's waist. He dipped the edge of his robe into the water he had brought and began to drag it across Nyota's small feet, easing it between her toes while he stared with unmasked longing into her face. He studied her as her countenance contorted beautifully with pleasure as Spock started to move within her; the sounds of their emotive mating the darkest and most hypnotic of melodies. Sorin forced his eyes from Nyota's enraptured face, but could not block her throaty sighs or Spock's achingly satisfied moans and hastily finished his task, understanding it full well for the skillfully executed punishment that it was.

Upon Sorin's exit, Spock kissed Nyota deeply while unzipping her gown and then tipped her back so her shoulders met the settee, her lower back encompassed by his large hands, her bottom elevated as it remained atop his lap as he sustained his heavy erections blisteringly slow advance and retreat into her body.

"I should punish you for withholding yourself from me, Miss Uhura." He murmured in his deep timbre as he peeled her now loose dress from her torso, revealing her breasts. "For denying us both of the bodily pleasure and tender haven we so desperately desire and need."

Nyota groaned and reached for him and Spock obliged her wordless request and brought her up to face him again, going deeper within her with the action and releasing a contented purr when she pulled his bottom lip between her teeth and gently bit down. She divested him of every piece of his uniform that she could reach while nipping at his lips between slow, wet kisses. She'd never felt so filled, stretched both physically and emotionally. She was choking on the hope brimming up within her, swelling and screaming to her that there was more to this life if she was willing to take it. "How do I know this isn't just sex…a passing mutual exchange of lust? Your words are enticing, but I'm no fool. I know our world all too well. There are no safe havens, Mr. Spock."

Spock, now bare above the waist laid her down once more, drawing his still hard cock from her body to rise and rid himself of his remaining clothing. Once fully naked he took hold of her dress, pulling it slowly over her hips and off to lay with his shed uniform across a chair. He lowered his body to cover hers again, growling deep in his chest as he pressed back into her womb. "I misspoke, Nyota." He said, bringing his mouth to suckle her aching breast and missing the way her face crumbled as his words. But he felt her…all of her and lifted his face to lightly kiss her trembling mouth. "You are not a haven, you are my home." He shifted, grasping her thigh to lift it and take his strokes deeper, making her gasp, as he whispered against her lips. "I have wanted you. I have loved you and I will not stop. You do not have to be strong, or guarded, or vigilant with me, you simply have to be. I will not objectify you, I will adore you."

"Prove it."

Spock placed his fingers swiftly to her face and let every shield he diligently maintained fall away, allowing the truth of every word to wash over her. "I am yours; please…please tell me you are mine."

Nyota's nails pierced the skin of Spock's back as her body arched and she came, his name a soft utterance from her lips into his delicate ear. Her very soul flowed into him from the meld but it wasn't until she moaned with her continuing release and sighed quietly, 'I love you so much' that his own orgasm overtook him causing him to shudder violently as he emptied himself into her. He had never heard those words spoken to him in the whole of his life and they were not just spoken but factual…true.

Spock rolled them onto their sides after several minutes, remaining fully encased in Nyota's body as they lay silently regarding each other, he smoothing one hand up and down her back, the other still cradling her face as she combed her fingers repeatedly through the hair on his chest.

"I don't believe I was the one withholding myself," Nyota said to his earlier statement. "But if this is the method you'll always utilize to punish me, I may have to." She turned her face into the curve of his hand and kissed his palm. "Have I made amends?"

"Say it again."

Nyota didn't hesitate, but leaned forward and whispered, "I love you so much," against his parted lips.

Spock rolled his hips and stroked his beard against the line of the jaw as if he were a cat leisurely and lovingly scenting and marking his territory.

Nyota gave him a little push and he shifted their bodies until she rested atop him.

"Are you ready to discuss what you owe me?" She asked, unable to resist raking her fingers through the soft hair of his head again.

Spock raised a curious brow, then gave a small thrust upward, pleased when Nyota's eyes widened at the feel of his penis becoming hard once again within her. "Name your price."

"Kiss me here." Nyota said, cupping a full breast, offering it to him.

Spock sat up, bending his knees and spreading his thighs to tip her back, pulling her breast hungrily into his mouth.

Nyota moaned and clenched her inner muscles around his ever hardening member. "Oh, baby. That's a good start."