**I would like to thank those who have taken the time to review. (You all know who you are.) Sorry this chapter has been long in coming and I know it is short, so consider it a tide-you-over until I can get to it again. Again, thank you for your support and reviews.
Blow Back: Chapter 8
Riley carefully wiped the blood off of Christine's face, being careful around the open cuts, and they were numerous around her mouth. He rinsed the cool cloth and placed it across her swollen eyes.
The room in which she lay was more lik cell than a room. It held a cot, a bucket, and Christine. She was still unconscious from the first beating she received from Valeris. Chapel had been unconscious for over two hours, and Riley was seriously beginning to worry.
The door to the room slid open to reveal Valeris. For a Vulcan, Riley thought, she was the angriest looking, not to mention the craziest, person that he'd ever met; she was usually so cool and calculating. This jealous anger directed at Christine, Riley just didn't get. Unfortunately, she was also one of the most intelligent and Machiavellian.
"How is the Federation whore?" She asked, running her fingers through her now long black hair.
Riley rose, exasperated with her. "If you wanted to fight her in some Vulcan ceremony, then you should have left her in fighting shape. This-" Riley gestured to Christine, "Is not honorable. But I guess you're a little beyond that at this point; you'll take a win however you can get it. Is that because you've lost so much?" Riley almost snarled the statement.
"Tut, tut, now Captain Riley. If you hadn't given up the position of your shuttle, a cloaked shuttle, may I add, Dr. Chapel might never have been in this position." She smiled vaguely, a smug look, crossed her face, "Oh, yes, she would, just not as quickly." Valeris stepped in closer to Riley, "So don't go all human on me with your guilt now."
Riley swallowed hard. "I told you from the outset that I didn't want anyone else hurt; that was my one stipulation to helping you. You killed half my crew!"
"A test, Captain Riley, merely a test."
"Fucking tests don't usually kill thirty people, you twisted crone. And this vendetta or grudge that you have against Dr. Chapel makes me wonder about your sanity or whatever the hell is left of it," he said. Kevin was almost nose to nose with her, "How much bullshit is all this Vulcan emotional control because you don't seem to have much."
Like a cobra's strike, Valeris' hand grabbed Riley around the throat and lifted him slightly from the ground, "Don't trifle with me, human. I will snap your neck like a twig; I don't care how much I might need you."
On the cot, Christine moaned, coming awake.
Dropping him to his feet, Valeris stepped back and out of sight. "Just do your job, Captain."
Riley coughed trying hard to get his breath back. He was sure there were nail marks in his neck where she had crushed his throat. The bitch was strong; he'd give her that, but the bitch was seriously unhinged.
"Riley?" Christine's voice was barely above a whisper.
"I'm here, Christine. I'm here. Have some water." He tilted a glass up to her mouth while helping her hold her head up.
"God, I am so thirsty. How did she know where we were? There's no way she didn't know without help." Even weak, her eyes were hard as sapphires, "Was it you? Did you tell her?"
Spock onboard the shuttle Spartacus was pushing it to limits of its performance. Seven years ago. Valeris' had appealed to him strongly then, now he knew why. In all his adult cycles, there was one woman he craved or required, and that was not Valeris. Now he understood why he had been so drawn to her during the period surrounding the Khitomer Conference. She was unbonded. What had she done during her time in jail, during the trial? She would have had a surrogate. It could not have been denied her, according to the Federation's Geneva Convention IV rules. But now, Valeris was headed to Vulcan because she thought Spock would be waiting for her there to finally consummate their (in her mind) long delayed bond.
As Spartacus travelled over eight times the speed of light, Spock was unaware that there was a grim, harsh turn to his mouth, actually his entire face. He would make sure she was not disappointed by his absence.
Six years, five months ago.
Sweat streamed from Christine's face and blood covered the white stone floor. Her blood, red blood.
Leaving McCoy, she had travelled back to Greece. He had recommended a good ob/gyn that specialized in cross species births. So far so good, she smiled, standing at the window looking out at the ocean's churning waves. A storm was brewing, black clouds and high winds and tides. Small sightseeing boats and fishing vessels heading for port. Still, Christine thought how magnificent the storm was. She felt safe here; her home had lasted for well over a thousand years, and barring an Earth shattering disaster would last a thousand more.
Suddenly both nausea and a lower abdominal pain hit her simultaneously. A cramping that took her breath away. As she bent over, she noticed rich red blood running down the inside of both her legs. Another agonizing pain brought her to her side on the cool stone floor. When she awoke, she was surrounded by a pool of crimson, and she knew that she was hemorrhaging to death. No one knew where she was. Spock! No! She thought angrily. He was searching for Kirk, and she was forgotten. A Penelope waiting for her Odysseus but was her lover fighting to come home or still fighting for his king. She felt she knew the answer, but didn't want to know for sure.
The pain was both torture and heartbreak; her daughter was lost. "Oh, God, help me," she screamed, almost mad with pain and loss. "Help me, please." Christine lay her head back down on the cool stone.
Crawling to the comm unit on kitchen wall, she pressed the home code for Leonard McCoy. A recording came on, his craggy face smiling, "I am so sorry to have missed your communique, but please leave a message. In an emergency, please call my personal or hospital communicator," the codes repeated for both. Hitting his hospital code she activated an emergency beam out beacon so he could find her. Only from McCoy would she accept help. She would not accept Spock, not now. She and their daughter were dying. Christine hoped she never saw his Vulcan visage again. He could serve his dead king for the rest of his life.
Reaching into her emergency medical bag, always kept on a lower shelf near the table, she pulled out two things: a strong pain killer and a tocolytic, to try to slow the contractions.
Last, she pulled out a nuero band. Christine set the band to limit the brainwave activity she emitted. McCoy would know why. She was completely unaware of her beam out to Atlanta Obstetrics where Leonard McCoy waited with a team to try to save their lives.