Disclaimer: I do not own Star Trek. I own nothing interesting. All I've got is my bones, must be why I like McCoy so much.

AN: So there have been some people who wanted to see the events of Through A Mirror Darkly from Kirk's prospective emotionally. And people who wanted to see the progression of what happened while they were at the academy. So this little story came to be, it's something I'm experimenting with, and don't quite know how I feel about it yet. But I did try, and hopefully you can follow along with Kirk as he moves from lust to something deeper. Happy late birthday to swamud3a!

Glimpses Through A Shard

Teris Xenite

The first time Kirk meets Leonard McCoy, he's snarling and spouting off facts about how they're all going to die in horrible ways. Flight was apparently unnatural, and in response to Kirk's rather uncharacteristic attempt at reassurance the good doctor only points out that they are likely to die from a myriad of dangers both seen and unseen. The man is seriously out of his element, and Kirk feels an inkling of curiosity as to what has led this man to Starfleet.

Somewhere between the fretting about solar flares and Andorian shingles, he gets his answer. Apparently the man has had a divorce so messy that he has to leave the planet. Kirk assumes that this means he attempted to kill his wife and failed, and thus is seeking protection from retribution for the attempt by joining Starfleet. Kirk isn't wrong often, but he's surprised when McCoy looks at him like he's grown a second head when he suggests that it'd be easier for him to kill his ex-wife than leave the planet. He's more surprised when the man offers him a flask without the slightest bit of rancor.

He gives the man a studying glance and after the assessment realizes that despite the fact that McCoy is well built, he lacks the hardness that he needs to make it in Starfleet. He decides that McCoy must have some hellacious skill set to be on the transport shuttle not in uniform, which implies that he's a last minute recruit, much like himself. Not to mention he's so fucking soft that he practically has 'make me your bitch' tattooed across his forehead. He considers for a moment, the man does have a damn fine mouth, and pretty expressive eyes. Not to mention damn fine taste in bourbon.

While he's thinking of how very nice McCoy'd look on his knees, he finds out that he's a doctor, which gives him a moment's pause. But then he goes and shudders at the slight jolt that the shuttle makes as it hits a pocket of turbulence, and Kirk realizes that doctor or not once they get to Starfleet, this guy's meat. Unless of course someone a lot meaner extends their protection, which as the slow drawl of McCoy's voice fills his ears, he begins to consider. There could of course be worse things than have a doctor as a pet, particularly one that was that pretty.

McCoy tries to get him to go to the infirmary as soon as they land, so that he can heal up the damage on his face and hands. He rolls his eyes, because this is walk in the park to some of the beatings he's taken and walked away from smiling. He shakes his head in disbelief when there are no demands accompanying the offer, and reluctantly submits to the doctor's request, largely because he wants to find out if those large hands are as soft as they look. Sure enough, McCoy heals him in a matter of minutes, with the bare minimum of pain, and no demands overt or otherwise about payment or favors for it.

If Kirk glares at the cadet checking out McCoy's ass as they leave the infirmary, well then he's just paying back the debt he owes the doctor even if he didn't ask for it. Never let it be said that Kirk doesn't settle his debts. It certainly wasn't any more than that, though the intense look of concentration that McCoy had worn as he'd knitted the torn skin back together had been hot. And if Kirk imagined said intensity of focus from the man in other more pleasurable activities, well he was only human after all.

But that look and the realization that neither of them have a place to stay for the evening prompts Kirk to make some subtle changes to the housing roster. The only other cadets that didn't currently have a roommate both had records, one for assault, and one for rape. The fact that they had records at all indicated that they weren't the brightest bulbs on the tree, and Kirk had never been very patient with stupidity. While ridding himself of such a problem didn't particularly concern Kirk, he didn't think that Pike would appreciate him killing his roommate on the first day.

He also found himself reluctant to allow anyone else put marks on the good doctor's skin. He acknowledged he was having a toddler moment, in which he looked at McCoy's fine form and coveted, thinking 'I saw him first you bastards, he's mine'. He only just resisted the urge to tell the upperclassmen that he had dibs on that particular piece of real estate as they followed McCoy's tall form with their eyes. He settled for smiling as the computer assigned the two of them together, leaving Mr. Anger Management and Mr. Touchy Feely trapped in close quarters together.

He threw an arm over McCoy's shoulders as they walked to their room, pronouncing that he was sure that this was going to be the beginning of a wonderful friendship. He raised an eyebrow at the mention of the fact that McCoy was quite possibly the only person on campus at the moment who could kill him in his sleep and make it look like a natural death. He took this as an indication that he should move his arm, and felt his willingness to woo the man rising. There was nothing to add a little bit of spice to the mix like the hint of danger that came from someone who could kill you if you pushed them too far.

Several weeks into their living arrangement, Kirk staggered home after a bar brawl had gotten a little too heated. His ribs hurt like a bitch, his nose was broken, and he could only see out of one eye because the other one was swollen shut. He experienced a bit of bewilderment when McCoy didn't mock him, only ran those strong hands over his ribs, clucking when he found them broken. McCoy could have made that diagnosis with a tricorder, but he apparently felt the need to tactilely confirm what Jim's shallow breathing was telling him.

Before Jim could rattle off his list of allergies, McCoy put a hypo up to his neck and administered it before he had the chance to protest. Jim tensed painfully, waiting for the shortness of breath and dizziness that accompanied the reaction his body produced to a prolific amount of substances. McCoy correctly interpreted his concern, and said in that calm clinical voice that he had to have practiced, because no one was really that kind. "Relax, I've read your file, you aren't allergic to the particular ostoregenerator that I just used."

The fact that someone had read his file would normally have freaked Kirk out. He'd normally be figuring out a way to eliminate the weakness that he'd inadvertently revealed. McCoy was different though, he kept his hands gentle and his voice soft, and in short order Kirk was floating on the drug induced bliss that the really good pain drugs was prone to give you. He realized as he was going under that he'd gotten blood all over McCoy's shirt, which seemed like a pretty piss poor thank you all things considered.

When he'd woken, he found McCoy's bloody shirt soaking in the sink, when most would have total lost it, and wondered why the man even bothered to try to save it. An inspection of his closet when the good doctor was in class revealed that he was in dire straits clothing wise, Kirk had noticed that even on casual occasions McCoy tended towards medical scrubs or cadet reds, but he hadn't realized it was because he didn't have anything else. Upon reflection Kirk realized that the only items he'd seen in McCoy's possession were the flask that they'd drunk from on the shuttle, his holo of his little girl, and the clothes on his back.

Granted, Kirk hadn't boarded the ship with much more, but he'd had the ability to buy anything that he might need once he arrived. It appeared that McCoy hadn't been so lucky. The stipend that Starfleet gave it's cadets wasn't stellar, but it was certainly more than these meager possessions would imply. This pricked Kirk's curiosity to the point that he took a look into McCoy's financials. He found that the doctor was actually making a fair bit more than he was as a stipend, as fully trained physicians tended to make Medical happy. But the lion's share of his pay went to Georgia, in the form of child support for a little girl that had Leonard's eyes. Additional money went to his mother, and to his ex-wife in the form of alimony. When all was said and done, McCoy was living on a pittance that made any item not provided by Starfleet a luxury he could ill afford.

Kirk pondered, and realized that this did put a different spin on all the times that the good doctor had refused to grab dinner with him, or join him for drinks. It wasn't necessarily a lack of desire, but a lack of funds that kept McCoy insolated in their drab little room. Kirk filed this information away as useful information about future seductions. He took great pleasure in procuring the doctor several new outfits of casual clothes, and remembering his fondness for bourbon a large bottle of Maker's Mark.

The doctor knowingly or not drew Kirk further in when he tried to return the gift. He'd protested that he'd healed Kirk because it had been the right thing to do, and Kirk realized once again how ill suited McCoy was to the life that he'd found himself in. In the end Kirk had managed to convince McCoy to accept the gift, by citing the fact that it would be bad manners for Kirk not to show his appreciation, and pointing out that he was not unlike to accept any of the other forms of payment Kirk had considered.

The accompanying leer had caused him to hastily protest that this was a very acceptable gift, and that they didn't need to mention it further. So instead of bringing the man into his bed, he'd once again shared a glass of fine bourbon with him. He ended up drawing McCoy into a conversation, and once the whiskey began flowing more freely he'd even heard McCoy laugh. He decided that he liked the sound of it. It was rare to hear laughter here that didn't originate with someone else's pain, and Kirk felt the warmth of it settle over him.

It had come to be a comfortable ritual between the two of them, and if Kirk noticed that he was holding back just slightly in his fights, letting his opponents land fleeting superficial punches before he dispatched them, he'd never acknowledge it. It was better if no one knew just how good he was anyway, better in the long run to have something to surprise them with should he need to. It was all about the tactical advantage, and had nothing at all to do with the concerned look in McCoy's eyes as he tended him, or the gentle touch of soft hands. If McCoy felt the need complain about the extravagance of the gifts, or the fact that whenever his bottle of bourbon went empty another took its place, a licentious grin from Kirk quelled the impulse.

Shortly after that Kirk heard some cadet's talking about his roommates finer physical qualities, in some very vulgar terms. He told himself that it was because he didn't want the inconvenience of having McCoy injured or traumatized that caused him to break the cadets' fingers. The growled warning that should they touch what was his, he'd see to it that sore hands were the least of their worries, well that was just because McCoy probably had the pain tolerance of an infant, and Kirk didn't want to lose sleep due to him whining about getting groped.

Apparently the cadets had more pull than he'd thought, or his mother had managed to piss off someone important, because not to long after that, while he and McCoy were enjoying dinner together a Klingon assassin attacked. Kirk dispatched the assassin, and sat down to continue his meal, realizing only too late the look of horror on McCoy's face when he continued on as if nothing had happened. He cursed that night, as McCoy had just started to warm to him, and he found himself missing the openness that the other man had displayed around him.

The fact that Kirk wanted McCoy hadn't ever really abated. In the beginning the need had been simple, a quick fuck over a table or on one of the narrow dorm beds would have sufficed. But as he came to know more about McCoy, as he found himself looking forward to the quiet moments with McCoy where he didn't constantly have to be on guard, he came to want more. As he came to appreciate that there was one person in Starfleet that he could trust not to kill him in his sleep, he came to crave McCoy's presence. And as the rare smiles and laughter became more prevalent, he came to want to coax those sounds and other far more carnal ones from McCoy's lips.

When he actually went through with one of his threats to let the rest of the cadets know what happened to those who touched what was his, he realized he no longer wanted McCoy for a night. Those feelings of possession that he'd attributed to wanting to be the first in Starfleet to experience that sinful looking mouth of McCoy's, had morphed into the desire to be the only one that McCoy used that mouth on, ever. This feeling disconcerted him. He figured it just meant that he needed more sex at first, but as he slept his way through half of the cadet class, earning himself one hell of a reputation, there was only one face that wouldn't leave his mind.

No one else rolled his eyes when he grabbed something deep fried and covered in chocolate instead of something green. No one else worried that his fights were going to damage something major, and clucked over him like a mother hen. No one else save Gaila legitimately gave a damn about his well being, and even though he couldn't figure out what McCoy's angle was, the feeling was addictive. He realized when he listened to the doctor complain for the umpteenth time about Kirk's diet and how he was going to keel over from scurvy or some such that he actually liked McCoy's bitching.

He realized that the way the man stabbed him with hypos when he was aggravated by Kirk's fighting, would cause him to incapacitate anyone else, but only made him grouse perfunctorily when McCoy did it. The man was still guarded around him, save when the urge to hover was so strong that he'd bitch or hypo. He'd hoped that in time McCoy would begin to soften towards him again, because as much as he wanted the good doctor, he wouldn't force him. He anticipated having ample time to coax McCoy back out of his shell, but then Nero happened.

McCoy'd behaved predictably and after Kirk had intentionally injected himself with a substance that he knew he was allergic to. When faced between taking Kirk onto the Enterprise and letting him die, he'd bullied security by calling on their fear of both Pike and Starfleet Medical, and Kirk had ended up just where he needed to be. Sometimes in the dark of night, he found it hilarious that the same empire that would castigate McCoy for his compassion had been saved by it. Between that and the fact that he was the top of his class, Kirk hadn't had any problems securing McCoy as his CMO. Okay so the knife he'd pulled on the other captain in front of Pike might have had something to do with it as well, but McCoy so did not need to know that.

And now, finally after all the years of chasing, the push and pull, Kirk was finally going to get what he wanted. He looked down at the picture of the woman who'd once held McCoy's heart. She would be an unfortunate casualty of his little plan, but she had left McCoy heartbroken and bled him dry at every possible opportunity. Kirk stroked his chin and looked over his plan once more. The child made things more delicate, as McCoy would eventually forgive him for the orchestration of his ex-wife's death should he ever discover the role that Kirk had played. But if so much as one hair on his little girls head was harmed, well Kirk might as well spout wings and fly as try to earn absolution for that.

In the end it didn't take much, just a call to a rich man who favored blondes, particularly when they were married to other people. Just a whisper in the right ear that Mrs. DeWinters would most certainly be accommodating if given proper incentive. Now, all he had to do was let nature take his course. Marcus DeWinter wasn't a forgiving man, he'd do the dirty work for him, of that Kirk was sure. Then all he had to do was play the savior that McCoy's little girl would need, and McCoy would fall into his hands nicely. And if the fact that he had to manipulate the good doctor into his bed rankled, well he'd deny that just as surely as he had the reasons he'd sheltered McCoy all these years.

AN: So there you have it, an attempt at Kirk's emotional perspective. Please excuse spelling errors and the like, I did try my best to catch them, but it's a tad bit difficult to think coherently when your walls are vibrating (guys downstairs apparently have started up a rock band, ugh). Thanks for reading, and as always please do let me know what you think.