Welcome Home

Spock stood, absolutely still, by the small window in his quarters staring, without seeing, at the starscape beyond. He fought his own impatience and the urge to pace. They had returned from the away mission well over an hour ago; he should have heard something by now. What could be taking Leonard so long? Was Jim alright?

Only Jim could get himself mauled by a beast on an away mission to an uncivilized planet.

Any other Starfleet captain would have done the smart thing and stayed on the bridge where they belonged. How many times did Spock have to argue against Jim going on dangerous missions before the foolish man would listen?

The door opened with a whoosh, making Spock jump. He forced himself to turn slowly, attempting to hide the anticipation he felt behind a mask of cool indifference. Light spilled into the dark room from the bright hallway beyond. Leonard stood in the patch of light, looking grim.

"Is he..." Spock had to swallow hard. He couldn't bring himself to say the rest. When they had brought Jim's limp body back on board, he had been sure...

Leonard stepped aside, a huge grin spreading across his face. Behind him, Jim stepped into the room. He was shirtless and had a thick white bandage wrapped tightly across his chest. Aside from a handful of wicked looking scratches and that bandage, Jim looked fine. In fact, he looked more than fine. He looked rugged and virile and very, very sexy.

Spock made himself take slow, steady steps as he crossed the room when what he really wanted to do was run across the room and throw himself at Jim.

"Jim," he said as calmly as he could, "It is a relief to see you looking so...well." It was a relief to see him alive. The relief Spock felt was so acute that it made his knees feel weak.

Jim grinned. "Thanks to the hottest doctor in Starfleet." He wrapped an arm around Leonard's waist when the older man blushed.

"Why..." Leonard began, his eyes gleaming with mischief, "You weren't...worried, were you?" He did love to tease the Vulcan.

Spock would not allow himself the smile that was dying to get out. "I was..." Going out of my mind.

Jim raised an eyebrow when Spock hesitated. "You were...?" He and Leonard stared at Spock, waiting.

Spock felt the tension going out of his body; his shoulders slumped. Try as he might, he could never hide his real feelings around them. "I was worried sick," he admitted. The other men beamed at him, opening their arms wide. Spock threw himself into the three-way hug, feeling as if he was the one who had come home.

"Welcome home," he whispered against Jim's neck. He allowed himself a long moment in their embrace before pulling back to say, "I must point out the obvious: If you would listen to my very sound advice about the dangers of-"

Jim grabbed Spock and silenced his lecture with a kiss.