Aftermath: Plato's Stepchildren - Chapel

by Satin Ragdoll

Directly after Kirk spoke to Scotty, Chapel broke in, "Captain? Could you hold off on that a minute? There's something I'd like to do, first."

He spoke into the communicator, "Belay that order." Kirk looked up at her, "Okay, Nurse Chapel. Go ahead."

Eyes fierce, she strode right up to Parmen. Before anyone could do anything, she slapped him in the face, hard. "That's for our humiliation, you monster!" She slapped him again, "And that's for Alexander."

Parmen rubbed his aching cheek, "I suppose I deserve that. At least you didn't scratch me!"

The normally placid woman snarled at him, "I should have! Do you know how many germs live under the average human's fingernails? It's horrifying!" She made a scratching gesture in Parmen's direction, and he back-pedaled, terrified.

Kirk broke in, "Nurse Chapel!" She turned her attention to him. She could tell by his body language and by the tone of his voice that he was trying - very hard - not to laugh. "That will be quite enough."

Christine straightened, "Yes, sir." But she was still glaring daggers at Parmen while they beamed up.


The next morning there was a single, perfect, white rose on her desk. There was no note, but she would have had to be stupid not to recognize an unwritten, "Thank you." Twisting the stem between her fingers and inhaling the sweet scent, she wondered which one of them had sent it. It couldn't have been him, could it? Spock? Send roses? Nah.


Spock sat alone in his quarters, meditating. He had been so angry at Parmen, so full of rage, and he could do nothing. He had done nothing, and Christine had exacted her own brand of justice for all of them. She had shown no reticence in doing it, either. No-one would ever know it (he could never tell), but he was grateful that someone else could express so freely the emotions (the rage) that he had to control. Even though he would never admit he sent it, he hoped the rose he had left her was adequate thanks for her bravery, and adequate apology for failing to protect her. She did not deserve the humiliation they put her through, and she certainly deserved better than loving him.