Christine looked up as Spock walked in, "Hello, beautiful! What's up?"

Spock sighed, "Christine. Please. Can you not call me 'beautiful'?"

She laughed, "Why not? You are, you know. Very beautiful. Well, at least to me." She fake scowled, "But I guess you Vulcans don't like cutesy names. So sue me! I can afford it. I'm a famed doctor and scientist, after all!"

Spock sighed and rolled his eyes, "May we be serious now?"

She instantly sobered, "Uh oh, Spock. I don't like this. You're going to kill my joy-buzz, aren't you?"

He nodded, "Yes, Christine. I am."

Christine frowned and turned her head away, "So go ahead, Spock. Go and break my heart again. Tell me Vulcans don't love. Which I don't believe, by the way. Tell me you will never love me. That you will never want me. That I'm a stupid, hopeless, emotional woman that will never, never, never be Vulcan enough for you!"

Spock shook her shoulder gently, "Christine!"

She looked at him in aggravation, "What?"

Spock took Chapel's hand and folded her thumb and last two fingers over, leaving her first two fingers straight. He took his own first two fingers and stroked them over her own.

Christine startled as she recognized the Vulcan sign for public affection. She gasped at the warm, tingling sensation that washed through her at that touch.

"Oh, my! Spock..."

"Shhh..." Spock gently cupped her face in his hands. He barely brushed his lips to her own before he pulled away. Christine just stared at him, shell-shocked. Spock pressed his brow to her own, "Give me a few seconds, please. Human kissing is always overwhelming to a Vulcan." All she could do was nod.

This time Spock kissed her fully, opening his mouth for her tongue. Christine kissed him back full force, artificial joy-buzz dissolving before the real thing.

"Oh, Spock! This is real? Tell me this is real. Please, please tell me I'm not dreaming!"

Spock's lips tipped up, "You are not dreaming, Christine."

She smiled up at him, radiant, "I don't think you know how happy you've made me." Her smile faded a bit and she socked him in the arm, "It's about time, you big dope! Do you know how long I've waited for you to come around?"

Spock stroked her cheek, gently. "I apologize for making you wait so long. It was...illogical."

She laughed and kissed him again. Spock was met with the sweetest, strongest, most accepting rush of emotion he had ever felt from anyone as her love for him wrapped itself around him like a blanket. Something within him responded to it, recognizing it as home.

He pulled back and looked at her, looking into her eyes. She smiled gently at him, "I love you, and I always will. That's not going away. Get used to it."

Spock gently brushed his fingers over her lips, "I realise I don't want it to go away. You have been there for me, Christine, always. You have been there for me when I did not want it, or realise I needed it. I want to be there for you, now. I want us to be together. Would you bond with me, and be my wife?"

All she could do was nod, to overcome to speak. Spock's fingers clasped her temples and he spoke the ritual words, Christine responding to them, "Never and always, touching and touched. Apart yet one. I join with you now in the Vulcan way, never to be parted again."

Spock went deeper and deeper into Christine's mind, as she shuddered with reaction, eyes wide. Deeper and deeper, strengthening their bond, until neither of them could tell where one ended and the other began. They were one, bonded together forever.

oOo

Kirk was happy for his best friend. Uhura was estcatic. McCoy, of course, was insufferably smug. Kirk had to tell him to "get over himself". Amanda was on cloud nine. She had liked Chapel since Babel. Sarek was his usual reserved Vulcan self, but Amanda told Chapel later that he was as proud as a peacock. He had liked Chapel, as well.

Deep, deep, down in her private mind, Christine hoped T'Pring had an apoplexy. It would serve her right.

oOo

Bryan G. Robertson was very confused. He went around and around it in his head, and he still didn't get it. After what he had done, why in blazes had he gotten a dozen white roses from Christine Chapel? He had shot her, for Heaven's sake!

Fin.