A/N: un'beta'd, and i really really had to do the thing


It has been two earth weeks, seven hours, and thirty two minutes since Jim Kirk died as a result of radiation poisoning. The Enterprise is currently in space dock undergoing massive repairs; her crew on imposed shore leave, not mandated, but necessary. Spock, as well as Mr. Scott have been kept busy with the sever corruption of a Starfleet admiral, who is now dead, and who caused irreparable damage to Starfleet command. His corruption was proved true on the fifth day; the mass trial did not end on the fifth, but on the eleventh day. Today is the twelfth; Spock is walking to Starfleet medical, still in dress uniform, from dogged press units, whom he still sees far down the street. He enters the building, slipping his hat off, and tucking it into his arm. He asks the receptionist for clarification of room number and floor. It is quiet here, because medical is not at the center of Starfleet command, and so had escaped drastic damages. he sees the new windows reflect the sun as he walks to a turbolift. Dr. McCoy, per his request, has kept him up to date, and comming earlier today, reported that his bio signs had strengthened enough, for the partly-induced coma to be lifted.

There is a 3 percent chance that he will not wake immediate afterwards, a .00001 percent chance he will not wake. Spock adjusts his hat under his arm and says the floor number; the lift vibrates quietly under his feet. He is soon out of the lift, walking in an empty hallway, antiseptic smells of healing waft through, evaporating anything else, and adding to the sterility of the hospital. He comes to stop at the private room 1006b, the door is locked open and sees Dr. McCoy bending over a tricorder, oblivious to him. Spock does enter. He has been away for two weeks, seven hours and forty five minutes. he has not wanted to be, he has wanted to be by his side, watch his signs of life slowly build up and become strong, see the pallor of him color again, make sure his bruises are healed, his bones healed.

He wants the starkness of yellowing skin, and patchy cheek, and flaky eye, dull consciousness, hand reaching out; the insecurity, the pleading, he wants it gone. He needs it gone, needs it replaced, needs the assurance that he is well.

Spock is surprised Dr. McCoy had not shouted at him for is illogical hovering. The doctor may not have wanted to dress him down over the comm; Spock had refused to video conference with him, citing his filled schedule, and lack of flexibility.

Dr. McCoy eventually notices him there in the door way and motions him in. he is on the far-side of the room, bending over the prone bed, he tells Spock that he should be 'batting his pretty lil' blues any minute' and Spock walks in to stand far from the foot of the bed. Light stays steady over the bed, blushing pale skin, and highlighting tired features, the staccato of medical equipment a beat in the background. He is so unguarded in the bed, covered to the waist, his shoulders loose and pliant to the pillow underneath, head falling to the side, breath deep and even, body prone under the thin sheet. Unconcerned with anything, unconcerned with having to prove himself. When he should not have had to prove himself, to anyone.

His body is the first to signal consciousness, stiffening, and jerking, eyes flying open, the beat of the machines increasing with his heart. Dr. McCoy is there assuring him, telling him everything is okay, that he is going to be sore for quite some time. That it has been two weeks. That he no longer has need to worry of John Harrison, Khan, one in the same.

He relaxes back into the bed, not as he had in unconsciousness, but it is enough, for Dr. McCoy to step back, for him to see Spock. For a tired smile to rise his lips.

Spock steps forth, hands seeking each other behind his back, crushing his hat between them. From the bed he looks up, his eyes are still dull, but the hopelessness, the sorrow— the pleading, it is gone, and Spock is grateful. He gives Spock thanks, and Spock does not deserve it, he is the person who deserves thanks, many times over. Spock calls him by name, the sounds vibrating through his lips, and his eyes light up, brightening so close to what they had been.

Spock glances up, but Dr. McCoy is not present in the room.

In the bed, he coughs, and Spock asks if he requires a suitable drink. He smiles again and says yes, and there is one on the table. Spock picks it up, pauses as he gives it to him. He reassures Spock that he won't spill, and does not spill much. Merely from the movement of his arm, his breath is labored, and his cheeks an unhealthy flush. In the bed, he reaches out and stops Spock from hailing Dr. McCoy. His hands rests cool on Spock's sleeve, small quivers trembling it. Spock moves his sight to the rest of his body. He seems so frail, not small, but neither as commanding as he seems on the bridge. Not as broken as he was in the face of total obliteration. It has only been two weeks and seven days and eighty nine minutes; he could not have lost so much muscle mass. Spock cannot shake his impression that it is otherwise.

Spock places his hat on the bed, lingers his hand on it.

"Jim, in passing you once regaled me with your 'soft spot' for old Terran holo vids. May I submit, that we are not currently engaged." he says, voice soft in the quiet room.

In passing too, he has told Spock of a gift for chess. Something that Spock does not want to strain him with. Given another chance, Spock would ask for a simple game of chess.

He is surprised, a bare uplifting of his features, "Yeah, sure, Spock."

His voice is light, and his eyelids are closing, but he reaches sluggishly over to Spock, and pats him on the hand resting on his hat, and he falls to sleep, with a smile, hand sliding from Spock's. Spock stares at his hand, and then gently lifts it to rest on the bed.

Spock does not think he will leave Jim's side again.