Title: Scotty's POV
Summary: That pivotal moment in the new movie from Scotty's point of view. (spoilers of course)
Disclaimer: Yeah – I wish.
Author's note: Like many of us, I've only seen the movie once. And my memory is not what it used to be, so forgive me if I've messed anything up. I'm posting this against my better judgment…
Khan was a murderer. Many times over – but the death that mattered the most at the moment was that of the Enterprise herself.
The ship was dead.
She was gone.
All that was left was…
All that was left was death and destruction. Every person on board would perish. The Enterprise was going to fall… was falling.
She was going to fall to Earth and kill thousands of people when she hit. Scotty knew this like he knew good scotch. The weight of it bowed his shoulders.
No one knew the beautiful lady called Enterprise like he did.
No one loved her like Jim Kirk- no argument there- but no one... No one… knew her like Montgomery Scott. And while it tore him up inside to admit it, he knew she could not be saved.
So why was he running?
Because of the man in front of him. Because of three little words, spoken as if they were self-evident, "No, she's not."
The core was misaligned. There was no fix for that.
And still they ran.
Perhaps… just perhaps… they could find a way to nudge her trajectory… just a bit. Just enough to send her crashing into the ocean instead of… well… instead of whatever densely-populated area they were undoubtedly heading toward.
There was real potential there to save hundreds, perhaps thousands of lives.
Then he looked at the man clinging to the catwalk railing with him and he did not see a mind planning for contingencies.
It was a mind filled with strength, with determination; with belief in success against all odds: It was the face of a true leader… a Captain.
Then a piece of the cooling system on deck seven decided to head their way.
Odd that he recognized it.
His mind cooled as he saw the instrument of his death.
Then he was falling.
Kirk caught him.
He looked up at his friend, a man who infuriated him on a regular basis, but whom he would follow to the end of the universe if need be. And realized he was slipping. There was no way he was going to let Kirk die trying to save him.
He opened his mouth to say as much, knowing it would have little effect on the man's determination, but he was too late. Jim's hand slipped.
Where had he come from?
It was a miracle.
Just maybe it was a day for miracles.
When they finally reached the core, Scotty realized just what he had to do.
He also knew it was impossible.
He hoped Kirk would come up with a brilliant idea that would mean he didn't have to because he knew he would be dead before he got there. But he would try…
And then he was waking up.
Och, but his jaw hurt. He rubbed at it.
He tried to get up but found himself restrained. He didn't remember sitting down.
Then it all came flooding back.
Room deadly- flooded with radiation.
His blood ran cold.
He didn't think his legs would hold him if he tried to stand. Although it shouldn't be difficult anymore as the flight of the great lady had resumed much of its power. The lights were on and there was only the occasional shudder to show how badly she was injured.
She wasn't dead. The Captain was right.
Utter relief warmed him.
She wasn't falling- she flew!
So many deaths averted. So much destruction prevented…
Scotty closed his eyes.
It should have been him.
He hit the button to release the restraints just as he heard the inner door to the core swing open.
He swallowed. Something large seemed to be lodged in his throat.
He stood and turned just as Jim collapsed against the outer door, his face a mask of pure agony.
As Chief Engineer on a Starship, Scotty knew- was required to know, the dangers of radiation. And so he was uniquelyqualified to understand exactly what his friend was going through. The thought was almost more than he could bear. As he stood, he realized that Kirk probably could not see him from that distance, so damaged were his eyes.
He was profoundly ashamed that he did just that: stood and stared and watched his friend suffer.
But there was nothing- nothing he could do.
Meanwhile, all the weight of the death and destruction he had been expecting? It was not relieved – it was compressed- the gravity increasing exponentially as the deaths of thousands compacted into the loss of one man. It was like a black hole – could anything escape this sorrow? Scotty nearly collapsed under the weight.
He was looking at a dead man… a dead man who should not be alone. He tried again to swallow the huge lump in his throat.
Spock should be here… needed to be here. Now.
He grabbed at the comm- fumbled in his desperation and then summoned him. Didn't know how to tell him what he was summoning him to… just… asked him to hurry. With that kind of exposure he didn't know how long the Captain had.
It wasn't long.
It wasn't long.
It wasn't long enough.
Spock arrived in moments. Uhura soon after. He was glad, then, for her presence. She turned to him and he held her while he wept.
If she wept too, he was unaware.
He watched, the fix-it man who could fix everything- helpless to do anything, and he wept silent tears. Standing strong beneath the weight- refusing to look away- he did the only thing he could: He stayed.
And then it was over.
It was over.
Jim Kirk was gone.
The hand slid from the glass.
He reached belatedly for the comm and this time called McCoy… 'Another casualty…'
Something in his voice gave McCoy pause, "Scott?"
The engineer knew what he wanted. Knew what he was supposed to say, but he couldn't do it.
His pause- apparently- was enough.
Finally, all he could muster past that boulder behind his teeth was a soft, "Aye."
There was a pause as the Doctor digested the information. He growled, "I figured it was too much to be happy about the end of that crazy ride!" and then Scotty heard him curse long and loud as he reset the comm.
He turned to his readings. With power restored, the radiation was being removed from the air and from everything inside. The room was nearly clear: Safe.
Safe. That word took on new meaning this day.
He could open it.
"Mister Spock…" he warned. Letting the Vulcan know that the door would open and not wanting his Captain to collapse into an undignified heap.
Spock nodded once without looking up. Scotty hit the button.
The door slid aside, and Spock gently took his friend into his arms, holding him carefully, closely. Easily lifting the body in his arms, he turned to meet the med team.
McCoy arrived- all business- doing his job. But it was a tool. A mask he used. The man was in pain. The gravity weighed on him perhaps even more: He had personally dealt with most of the deaths on the ship today- at least every one that had made it to his sick bay- but this one? This one was personal.
Uhura laid her hand on the doctor's arm to still the somber entourage before they took him away- reaching to gently close those blue eyes- eyes that would never spark fiercely again.
Spock stood watching them depart. The doors closed behind them. He paused silently for a moment, but only a moment. He had announced to the universe- with a cry torn from him by the power of grief- what his next move would be: Khan.
Scotty would have pitied the creature if he didn't loathe him so completely.
Spock left; an expression on his face the Engineer was thankful he would not have to face.
He wished the first officer success – bloody – complete – success…
And then he was alone.
Someday someone would- inevitably- ask him about Jim Kirk's last moments. And on that day he would have to tell the tale:
The needs of the many…
The needs of the many…
He was so angry he wanted to spit.
And then an ensign arrived, timidly asking a question.
A question about the Great Lady.
She was hurting and she needed him, too. More, maybe, after the loss of her one true love.
Eventually he would have to find a way to tell her – tell the Enterprise that her Captain would not be coming home.
Right now- he couldn't accept it himself.
In spite of what he had seen- he refused.
He closed his eyes, blinking away moisture.
He took a deep breath.
Turned to answer the ensign – and answer him confidently.
He gritted his teeth and got to work.
After all – it was a day for miracles.