If Jim could hear the thoughts currently running through his head he would hate him. He would be without a doubt angry, he would feel betrayed.

Truth is he hates himself for thinking these things, he knows he shouldn't, but somehow he just can't help it. He can't stop himself. He can't make the thoughts go away.

The thoughts that he will never give voice to, the thoughts that he will never admit to having. The thoughts that he really wishes would go away.

But they won't.

So he thinks.

But he really wishes that he didn't.

...

He loves Jim, he honest to god truly loves the kid.

He is kind and brave, funny, charismatic, extremely loyal, he is the best damn friend that he has ever had, the best damn person that he has ever met.

Not that he sees that.

Jim tears himself down at every opportunity, he doesn't believe in himself, he looks into the mirror and where everyone else sees a hero, he sees a failure. He thinks he's worthless, that all he does is let people down. He thinks he's weak.

In reality Jim's only weakness is the inability to see how great he is, that ever present insecurity that he just can't shake.

The insecurity that he is trying so hard to cure.

Because Jim Kirk doesn't believe he deserves to be cared for, he doesn't think he is worthy of love and that breaks his heart.

...

It didn't take him long to figure out that Jim Kirk has some truly deep scars behind that devilish grin of his. It took him even less time to realise that that devilish grin was just an act he put on so people wouldn't see the shadows in his eyes.

There's another side to Jim, a secret side that he doesn't show anyone else. He's caught glimpses over the years and those glimpses have been enough to make him shudder and he fully understands why Jim keeps that part of himself hidden.

The part of him that is angry and bitter.

The part that is filled with self-loathing and viciousness.

The part of him that hates himself as much as he hates the world.

The part of him that is so very very dark.

At times he wonders if that side of him is actually the real Jim Kirk and everything else is just a carefully constructed persona that he created to keep people from seeing the truth.

So people can't see the tragic past that has made him this way.

At times he wonders what kind of man Jim would be if the people supposed to love him hadn't damaged him so badly.

...

Jim was abused. That's a fact. Not that they've ever sat down and had an actual conservation about it, talking about feelings is something his friend is pretty much incapable of.

But he's a doctor he's been trained to spot the signs. Not everyone realises that the signs still exist even once the abuse has stopped. People underestimate just how badly it can break a person.

Break them so badly that the cracks will always be there, always visible if you know where to look. He knew where to look and he didn't like what he saw.

He saw the way he flinches when people touch him unexpectedly, the way he tenses up at any touch he is expecting, the nervousness when people get too close. He saw the many scars too old and faded to be from bar fights.

Then there were the dreams, or more accurately the nightmares.

The frantic tossing and turning, the god awful mutterings, the god damn begging.

'Please, no stop, don't, no more, I'm sorry, please no more'

He gets why Jim never goes home. He gets why he doesn't even class Iowa as that.

The one thing he doesn't get, and will never be able to get is how somehow can cause a child so much pain. Oh he bets Jim was never easy, he'd put good money on the fact that he was more than a handful. He's heard about the cliff incident god only knows what other stunts he pulled.

But he's seen the whip marks and knows that there is nothing he could have done to deserve that.

He wishes he could tell Jim that it wasn't his fault, that he wasn't bad. He wishes he could tell Jim that he cares about him, that he isn't worthless. He wishes he could tell him all the things he's never heard before.

He can't because they don't talk about things like that, Jim would clam up and run away as fast as his legs could carry him.

And if he's being honest with himself he doesn't think he could bear to see the disbelief shining in his best friends eyes.

...

Of course it isn't just his sorry excuse for parents that fucked Jim up so spectacularly.

Tarsus IV, another thing that they don't talk about.

He remembers the agonising moment he became CMO and was allowed access to Jim's restricted files. He remembers the sinking feeling in his stomach when the pieces started to slot into place.

His erratic eating habits.

His distrust of figures of authority.

His constant need to protect those around him.

His absolute refusal to study the subject in their second year.

He called him to his office and cautiously approached the subject. Jim shut down on him about 10 seconds in and told him 'I'm over it Bones' it was never mentioned again.

He's willing to bet it never will be.

'I'm over it Bones'

But he wasn't, no one ever completely gets over something like that.

The trauma is too great, the damage inflicted too extensive for him to ever really heal.

Tarsus IV took his remaining innocence away.

Tarsus IV broke him all over again.

It breaks his heart, like so many things about the man do, but he can't deny the fact that Jim Kirk will never be whole.

...

The thing that alarms him the most about his friends personality is the empty space where is self preservation should be.

He's lost count of the amount of times he's had to patch the kid up.

He throws himself headfirst into any situation with no thought of his own safety. He sacrifices himself eagerly, he is so reckless it makes his heart clench in fear every time he steps of the ship.

And don't even get him started on the bar fights, what kind of crazy idiot picks a fight with a guy twice his size?

He tries not to let himself dwell on why is friend is that way, but he guesses it's something to do with the other space within his friend, the space where his self worth should be.

Jim Kirk believes he is less important than pretty much everyone in the galaxy, he doesn't value his own life, he borders on suicidal, he thinks so little of himself that it makes him want to go find his disgusting excuse for mother and tell her exactly what she's done.

Would she even care?

Would it bother her to understand how badly she's destroyed someone she was supposed to care for? Did nobody ever tell her mothers were supposed to protect their children, not hurt them?

At times he wants to bury his head in his hands and cry for all the horror Jim's experienced.

He wants to cry the tears Jim has always held back.

Most of all he wants to cry for the child that Jim never got to be, and the man he will never get to become.

...

Now he's back to the thoughts he hates himself for having.

Some nights when he's alone in his office or his quarters, his mind drifts and he wonders about the man he calls his best friend.

He wonders what he'd be like if his father never died.

He wonders what he'd be like if his mother loved him, if he was never his step-fathers punching bag.

He wonders how he would have turned out if he was never told he was a poor replacement for a man that he will never be as good as.

He wonders what type of person he'd be if he'd grown up happy and cared for, if his life hadn't gone to hell the moment he took his first breath.

Jim Kirk is an incredible man. That's a fact.

But what he really despises himself for is the fact that he can't help but think he could have been even better.

A/N no idea where this came from but it wouldn't leave me alone. Let me know what you think

.x.