Spock did not understand the inexplicable urge to get this done now, but 'now' was the correct time. Some part of him was saying that it was 'now' or it would become 'too far from now'. And for him, that was no longer an option. Someone observing things from the outside looking in would say that he and Nyota had not been together nearly long enough. But he was sure, after three months, that it was time for him to set certain things in motion. He wished to have certain things ready for the day he knew was approaching.
He entered his quarters, sat down and put in a subspace call to his mother. He sat and waited patiently for her face to appear onscreen. Though he would never admit it to anyone else, seeing her face always gave him a level of comfort that was not at all logical. And then, there she was.
"Spock!" said his mother as her entire face lit up in a genuine smile. "I didn't expect to hear from you today. What a surprise!"
He saw the twinkle in his mother's eyes and knew it for what it was; he'd seen that same twinkle in Nyota's eyes from time to time. His mother was a woman of mischief. The mischief was never anything too serious, but he'd seen his father's ears blush green numerous times through the years when her eyes would twinkle just so and she would whisper something or other in his ear. When he was still quite young and did not understand, he wasn't able to make the connection. But as he grew and learned, he found himself the subject of her mischief on several occasions. He had not grown immune to his mother's teasing and in fact knew to expect it. Some little part of him even looked forward to it. "Is this an inconvenient time, mother?" he asked.
"Not at all. I don't have to grade papers for over an hour and your father won't be home until two hours from now."
Some part of him was relieved. It would not at all have displeased him to speak with his father that day, but this conversation was for his mother's ears alone. "Mother, I have a private request to make of you."
She grew serious then, all business. "What can I do for you, Spock?"
He pauses a split-second and just held himself back from chewing on his lower lip. "May I have grandmother's ring?"
"Oh!" she said with a wave of her hand, "That old thing? It doesn't even have a stone in it anymore. I took the ring and put it away for safekeeping. But the stone was reset into a necklace, I'm sure you remember that."
"I was going to ask that you please bring the platinum ring itself to someone with expertise in these matters and have the Vulcan obsidian that belonged to my father's mother put into the setting."
Amanda was no fool. She sat up quickly. "Is this for your lieutenant?"
He tried not to let his ears blush green but knew he was not succeeding. "Yes, it is for Nyota, mother."
And for once he seemed to have really taken his mother off guard. Her eyes began to tear and she quickly wiped them away, forced herself together. "Spock, Vulcans don't do engagement rings," she reminded him gently.
He knew why she'd said that. His father had told her that, in his presence, on one occasion and the subject was never revisited. He remembered, even then, that at the time the look of hurt on his mother's face speared him to the heart. He pretended he had not noticed or paid any attention to their conversation- "No, but she who is my mother is human and she who I wish to make my wife is also human. I cannot turn my back on that part of my identity, especially not now."
She almost couldn't handle it. Her hands covered her face as she found herself on the verge of a real downpour of tears. She wasn't an overly emotional woman when it came to the display of tears but… "All these years I thought- I thought- I thought that you thought 'human' was a word you wanted to distance yourself from as far as you could. I thought there was nothing of me inside you."
He hadn't expected this reaction from his mother. "Mother, have I caused you distress? I promise, it was wholly unintended." He looked troubled. She was one of the only people who would ever see that troubled face.
And that face he was wearing now as he stared at her across space and time, she remembered a day long ago when she'd seen that very expression on his face. Ironically it involved the ring he was calling to ask for.
Mother was crying. She was crying because she had lost the stone in the ring given to her by her mother. It was supposed to go to her son to give to the woman he wanted to marry. She'd put it away long ago for that purpose. But by the time Spock turned seven and was betrothed to T'Pring, one curt conversation with Sarek revealed that Vulcans most certainly did not do anything as ostentatious as engagement rings and it would not be logical to expect Spock to engage in such a Terran materialistic ritual once he and T'Pring became of age. She had had one stricken look that he had noticed, but she had shut off what she was going to say next and simply nodded once, "If that's the way it is, Sarek." Then she'd walked away. She had buried her thoughts and feelings on the matter, put the ring away for the time being…
Then one day she began to wear it herself. She figured since no one from her line would get it, there was no use having it sit in her jewelry box, buried. And then one day she'd looked down at her hand to see the stone was gone.
"Do not disturb your mother, son," said his father that day on his way out of their home. "You must give her the opportunity to work through her illogical emotions. If you disturb her, it would only make things worse."
Spock nodded and obediently turned and acted as if he were about to return to his room. But as soon as his father left their abode, he went to his mother's room and knocked gently. "Mother. May I enter, please?"
She smiled as she looked up. He was only nine and already his speech was just as precise as his father's. "Come in," she said as she forced herself to wipe away her tears.
"You are in a state of distress, mother?" he asked as he walked up to where she was sitting.
"Yes, but don't you worry about that," she said. "That's not your responsibility."
He seemed to stand there with his little serious face. And he looked honestly confused. "Mother, am I not to help you in all things?"
Her smile was straining at the edges. "Well, Spock, to be honest with you, there isn't much that can be done about this."
"I know you have lost the stone to your ring. Where do you think you lost it, mother?" he asked.
She gave off a false smile and shrugged at her beautiful son. "I don't know. If I knew that, I'd be able to find it myself."
He had to concede that that was a very logical point. And then he asked the question that made her realize what was on Spock's mind. "When and where was the last time you saw it for a certainty?"
She smiled down at him genuinely then. "This morning when I got up, it was there. I went to go to the Embassy meet and greet, and it was still there. Even after lunch, it was there." She thought about it some more. "That's the last time I saw the diamond."
"You eat your noonday meal at home under the usual circumstances. Was that the case today?" he asked.
She doubted he would find the stone, but she smiled down at her little detective and said, "Yes, I most certainly did."
"Did you go anyplace else afterward?" he asked.
"No," she said as she thought about what he was asking.
"Then, mother, it must be here in the house," he said. The only sign of his excitement was the fact that his eyes had opened slightly wider and his eyebrows rose. "I will find it for you, mother!" he said as he dashed from her room in a very unVulcan-like manner.
She found herself smiling despite her tears. If losing the stone caused Spock to show this inkling of compassion for her human emotions, then losing the stone was worth it after all. She lost herself in the rest of her day, forced herself to move on with her schedule. But from time to time as she walked about the house she would see different parts of her little man sticking out from under a piece of furniture. He was, it appeared, still searching for that diamond.
An hour after she turned in for bed, she was being shaken awake by a little hand. She could hear a child voice whispering loudly by her ear. "Mother! Mother, I have found it!"
Her eyes snapped open. She sat up and turned on her bedside light to see her son standing next to her. She could see he was fighting back a wide grin. His shirt and hands were covered in a green substance. And in his filthy little hand she saw the oval shaped two carat diamond being held delicately between his thumb and forefinger. It was also covered in the green substance.
"Spock!" she gasped, "Wherever did you find it?"
Sarek was now awake and asking, "What is the meaning of this, Spock?"
"Mother, you must have lost it after your noonday meal while returning something to the refrigeration unit. I found it there, buried in a bowl of guacamole."
She thought about that. An hour after lunch she'd gone back into the kitchen to check the automated unit to make certain she had what she needed to prepare for dinner. She'd stuck her hand into the unit to move things around and at one point her hand, and therefore the ring, had hit one of the shelves. When she'd taken her hand out, she realized the stone was gone at that point. "How in the world did you know it was in the guacamole, of all places?" she asked, amazed.
"I did not know for a certainty. So I used the experimental scanner I made in class last year. I input the chemical formula of mineral I wished to find along with its diameter, density and refractive index. I then undertook a careful scanning of every section of the house, no matter how innocuous it seemed. I narrowed it down to the refrigeration unit nearly an hour ago. My scanner, unfortunately, is still but a prototype. But I was able to find it just a few minutes ago using the scanning device. Had it been more advanced, I could have found it sooner."
"Spock, I'm so proud of you!" his mother proclaimed. She couldn't help it. She pulled the little boy up into her arms and hugged him despite how dirty he was from digging into the guacamole to find her diamond.
He could see Sarek's disapproving face on the other side of the bed, warning him with just one look not to show his emotions. But for once, Spock didn't care. He turned his head and snuggled into his mother as his arms went around her and he relaxed into her embrace. For the last time ever he hugged his mother back while still holding tightly to the diamond that had belonged to his grandmother. He didn't know if she could hear him, but he made his mother a promise in his mind that day while he was still in physical contact with her. She will wear the ring, someday, mother. I will give it to her.
"You really meant it!" his mother said through her tears.
He looked honestly shocked. "You could hear my promise, mother?" he asked as his brows knitted and his face briefly showed his concern.
She nodded in the positive as one more tear spilled down her face. "Yes, but I didn't think you truly meant it back then. I thought you only promised it so I wouldn't be so sad about it not being able to continue on in the tradition. Then the whole thing with T'Pring happened and I figured, well that's the end of that. But now that you're actually going to use it…" She looked honestly dazed with joy.
"But with the Obsidian stone from father's mother's collection."
"Of course. And that's more fitting after all, isn't it?"
He nodded. He'd thought that at first his mother would protest, would not understand, but it seemed she did. "Yes, mother, it is."
She drew herself up and said, "Well, Spock, when you marry her don't logic Nyota to death. It's enough to make an Earth woman scream." But she had that twinkle in her eye again.
"Mother," he said in his own controlled form of near exasperation.
She smiled. To hear him address her in that tone of voice made her feel an inexplicable joy. "Well I'll get busy with that for you and I won't say a thing to your father for now, either."
He knew it wasn't like her to keep things from his father, so he couldn't deny being touched by the effort. "Mother, I thank you."
"Don't worry, Spock. It'll be our secret for now."
The next story in this installment, another oneshot, is going to be Uhura-based. It's called "Intergalactic Web". Keep an eye out for it!