Disclaimer: I do not own Star Trek.

Written for jessica_hobe in the nutrekexchange on lj.


"You know," Bones says, with that full-on Southern drawl that conveys his desperate amusement at Jim's plight so well, "I never really thought I'd see the day."

"Shup up, Bones," Jim grits out and glares over at his best friend. "No, really," he adds when Bones opens his mouth again, "shut up. I'll make it an order if I have to."

The doctor snorts and grins, and Leonard McCoy is such a bastard; Jim should have seen this coming. "Ahw c'mon, Jim. It's just too cu-"

"Finish that sentence, McCoy, and I swear I will fire your ass," he warns, trying to infuse as much threat and venom into the whispered words as he can. "And shut up before you wake him up! You have no idea how hard it was to get him to actually go to sleep."

Vulcans were the bane of his existence; them and certain medical doctors who thought making fun of Jim Kirk was apparently their true calling. Or something. Jim is running on about an hour of sleep in the span of the last two days, is the thing, and he's just a little out of it, maybe. He's pretty sure he's allowed though, considering his very Vulcan First Officer is currently the size of a toddler and curled into Jim's chest like he belongs there.

It was supposed to be a gift, though at the moment -after two days of non-stop questions, and a stubbornness to rival his own- Jim is really, seriously, starting to wonder what part of this counts as any kind of gift at all. It's the first time Spock has actually settled down long enough to fall asleep and Jim is suddenly so grateful he thinks he might start to cry like a fifteen year old girl. It's embarrassing; also not something he'd ever do in front of Bones, really, because he would never live it down.

"You wouldn't last five minutes without me, kid," Bones says, annoyingly cheerful, and Jim seriously considers the merits of consigning his CMO to the brig. He doesn't though, because Bones is right -not that Jim would ever admit it to the man- but even more importantly, he has experience with kids that Jim doesn't. Even if Spock is a Vulcan kid, and not a human one; at least he and Bones get a long better than they do when his First Officer is full-size.

Jim sighs and leans back against the wall, looking helplessly down at Spock. "I didn't think they did the comfort-thing," he says, glancing up at his friend.

Bones just shrugs. "Well, from what I've seen he ain't got all that repressed, stick-up-his-ass Vulcan programming yet. Maybe he's more in touch with his human side at this age."

"Maybe." It's as good as any other explanation, and Jim is too tired to really are right now. His ship hasn't stopped running just because Spock's been downsized and he's been busy dealing with the latest batch of natives, and their obviously bad ideas of rest and relaxation. Next leave Jim is totally taking them all to Risa if only for whatever's left of his own sanity.

"I've had my doubts about that since we met," Bones quips when Jim says as much, sending him a sidelong grin, and shrugging.

Jim snorts. "Who's crazier? Me, or you for following me?"

"Oh me. Definitely me, Jimmy, no doubts there. Or Hell," he continues, looking down at the small Vulcan in Jim's arms, "maybe he's crazier than all of us."

Jim sighs, looking down at Spock with the sort of helpless affection it seems like he's always felt for his first officer, and gently runs his hand soothingly up and down Spock's back. It's a little disconcerting, really, and Jim has come to appreciate just how much he relies on his friend to help him run the ship in the two days since he's been transformed.

He also really misses the nightly chess matches, and the way they'd slowly been opening up to each other more and more, getting to know each other on more intimate levels than the professional. Jim just wants his friend back.

"Any ideas how long this is gonna last, Bones?" He hasn't been able to get a straight answer out of the Akedians. Of course, he wasn't exactly being the most diplomatic of Captains at the time, either, so that could explain why. He knows Uhura is just waiting for a chance to jump all over him for it, too.

Bones sighs, shaking his head, and sends Jim a mostly-sympathetic look. The amusement is still lurking there, but even he knows the situation could get pretty damn sticky if Spock isn't back to his usual logical self by the end of their shore leave. As it is, they -Bones at least- should have already reported the incident, but neither of them felt up to dealing with the Admiralty over something that would probably be resolved shortly.

Jim hoped, anyway.

"I really can't say, Jim. I've run every test I can think of, and honestly, I can't find anything unusual. He's healthy as far as I can tell; everything is normal for a half-human, half-vulcan kid." Bones shrugs helplessly, lifting his hands in a 'what can you do' gesture. "The Akedian healer I talked to said it shouldn't last long, but given the pointy-eared bastard's ah…Unique make-up…" he trails off, grimacing.

"Yeah," Jim sighs, shifting Spock to a more comfortable position even as he pushes away from the wall. "Well, we'll let you get some rest Bones. Wouldn't wanna disrupt your much-needed beauty sleep," he grins tiredly, bumping the doctor's shoulder as he passes by.

Bones just rolls his eyes. "Goodnight Jim. If something changes you know where I am," he offers, but Jim just waves him off with a careless hand.

"We'll be fine, man. Don't worry so much," he calls back quietly, already heading down the hall towards his own quarters.

Of course he has to remember to turn the heat up once he gets in there, too conscious of how vulnerable Vulcan biology is to the cold, though Spock seems pretty damn content burrowed into Jim as he is. Jim just holds him close as he moves about the room, reluctant to put him down; he knows it's probably some fucked up product of his over-active brain, but he can't help the instinct that Spock is safer with him, even if the bed is only about four feet away and it would be easier to put him down there.

There's just…Something about this mini-version of his first officer that kicks all of his protective instincts into over-drive, and Jim can freely admit that while he can't wait to have [I]his[/I] Spock back, he's definitely going to kind of maybe miss the inquisitive, tactile Vulcan kid. Then again, maybe he can work on dragging this side of his friend, because it has to be in there somewhere, out into the open when it's just the two of them.

Jim thinks he'd like that; the chase it would involve getting his unemotional -which is total bullshit because Jim [I]knows[/I] Spock, was given a very public, very obvious show of his emotions that left marks on Jim's throat- first officer to even admit that he's got an insatiably curious, clingy kid in there somewhere is going to be so, so worth it when Spock eventually gives in, as Jim knows he will.

His Vulcan already has a hard time resisting him in personal matters. Jim shamelessly uses this to his advantage.

"Alright, buddy," he says softly, gently prying tiny arms from around his neck in order to lay the sleeping toddler on the bed, all without waking him. He definitely considers that a win for the five minutes it takes to change out of his uniform, and into a pair of sleeping pants, and return to the bed. Spock is awake, of course, peering at him wearily, and apparently tired enough that he refuses to sit up at all, instead sprawling over Jim's bed like he belongs there, completely trusting. It strikes Jim, all of a sudden, that Spock [I]does[/I] trust him, completely, even when he's this vulnerable and remembers next to nothing and that…Well, that's something.

"Time for bed," he says after a long moment, offering a tired smile and waiting while the kid looks him over curiously for a few minutes. Spock seems to make up his mind, and scoots backwards on the bed until Jim has enough room to climb into it. He isn't surprised when Spock curls up on his chest like a satisfied cat.

Jim just grins, and tousles the dark head playfully. "What's with all the touching, huh? Thought you guys didn't like it?" He can't help asking, but he doesn't really expect an answer.

"You're different," Spock answers sleepily, not bothering to open his eyes. "Warm. Mine," he finishes, and Jim blinks.

Sleep pulls him under before he can really think about it.

The next morning he wakes up surrounded by heat, and someone breathing on his neck, and it takes him a long moment to realize that Spock is very much his usual size, and also still curled around him in his bed.

Not, of course, that Jim has any objections to that; the way his first officer is holding on to him, possessive and easy, is just about the best thing ever, and Jim stays in that between place where he isn't asleep, but doesn't have to be completely awake either, and it's almost bliss.

Spock says little, just stays in skin contact with Jim, and buries his face against his Captain's neck, holding on like he thinks he'll turn back into a kid if he lets go.

Jim holds him back, tries to project all the affection, and friendship, and calm that he can muster because he knows how he would feel, if it had happened to him, and he knows how much trust Spock is placing in him by allowing him to see him break down like this.

He intends to be deserving of that trust, and well, Spock has picked up his pieces and put him back together more times than he can count, now. It's only right that Jim do the same for him when he needs it.

"It's okay," he murmurs, running one hand down his First's spine. "You're you again, and I'm right here."