Captain Kirk didn't get nervous. His blood didn't rush through his ears. His heart didn't throb his pulse through his wrists or neck or chest. And if he and his heart ever disagreed on this, it wasn't supposed to be in a comfortable, dimly lit bar on a remote Star Base, surrounded by Andorian chicks as hot and blue as his own eyeballs.

So then… why did he feel that way right now? He had been trying all night to slow the beating, paranoid muscle with a beverage that was, like sun and skin, clearly the preferred color around here. Not as deep a blue as Kirk preferred, though. He liked the shade of the science shir-

Well, hey.

In his peripheral vision, an antenna drew his attention. Looking over, he saw one of the most attractive creatures he'd ever seen in the universe. Or as much of the universe as can be seen in the first three months of a five-year deep space exploration mission.

Her antennae were pointed towards him, which, in the little studying he'd done so far, indicated he might get lucky tonight. That wasn't slowing his heart either, but it didn't usually, so he wasn't as perturbed about it. Maybe distracting himself could help the condition solve itself… right? He could almost see the eyebrow go up at his internal rationalization. Great. His first officer had become his own personal Jiminy Cricket.

He let out a sigh as he stared at the beautiful blue woman next to him.

"Jim Kirk. Cap-"

"I know, Captain," she purred the last word, "you're the most interesting thing that's happened on this base in- oh, ever. "

"I'm happening?"

"You're here. And so am I. Lucky me." She winked at him and scooted closer. He usually liked more of a challenge, but she was clearly out of his league as far as looks go (he based this on the fact that her eyes were even bluer than his), so he would take whatever she'd give him. He licked his lips.

"Can I get you a drink- ?" His pause asked her name.

"You can get me a few seconds to escape." She winked.

He didn't understand until she looked over and beyond him. He'd been in this situation before. There was probably a large man standing directly behind him. He didn't know why, but instead of spinning around to face his challenger, he leaned in and kissed his deceiver. She was surprised, but kissed back.

He recoiled. She ran… too cool. It was like kissing someone who'd been dead for an hour. Not that he'd ever done that.

He must have made some kind of micro expression of distaste, because clearly she sensed it, and that added fuel to fire of the angry boyfriend behind him, who didn't wait for him to turn around, but punched him in the ear.

He fell off his chair and got back to his feet, reeling and hearing in only one side of his head. The other was buzzing angrily- kind of like all of the blood running through his body had been doing for the past day.

"Come on man, the ear? How would you like it if I tied your antennas together?"

Antennae, Captain, said a small, logical voice in his head. He had to push that away as the muscular humanoid pounced on him, fists flailing. He shoved the Andorian off of him and-

Oh, there it goes. The trigger, the "fuck it. "

He responded with his own punch. That was satisfying- the sound of hot flesh against cool flesh, his fist meeting the jaw of the equally attractive Andorian boyfriend.

The communicator chirped on the bedside table. The bed, however, was empty, as Spock was not sleeping.

He was in a decorated corner of his room on the Enterprise. It was a corner he required to serve his meditation. He ignored the communicator successfully for 7.1458 Standard Minutes. Finally, he took a six second exhale, and when his lungs were empty, released himself from nothingness and rose to his feet.

He opened the communicator. "It is late, Captain."

"Is this the first officer for the federation ship?"

"This is Commander Spock of the U.S.S. Enterprise. How can I be of assistance?"

"The Captain is here and- we don't know how to stop him."

"Stop him? Specify."

The answer he heard (and the sounds his sensitive ears detected beyond) caused a minute adjustment in the pupils of the Vulcan. He closed the device and left his room.

Spock arrived at the bar to an unnerving sight. The Captain was beating an Andorian to, as Dr. McCoy would say, "a pulp." Spock tilted his head, sparing a moment to try to calculate why this would have happened.

The Captain preferred to engage those in combat who were superior to him. He found the experience of being an "underdog" pleasurable. This was evident not only in his leisure activities but also on the bridge of their ship. Spock's eyes scanned the spectators at the bar, and landed on an objectively attractive Andorian woman. There was the reason. If a female was involved, Jim could be counted on make an array of illogical behavioral choices.

He approached his Captain, carefully, and pulled him to his feet, off of the splayed and gasping man on the ground. However, as soon as he had performed this action, he realized that it had not been the correct way to proceed. His cue came from the Captain's skin.

He could feel the blood under his Captain's skin, racing, struggling to push itself through the arteries and capillaries of his body. He felt a coiled, restless, violent energy, and like every time he felt the Captain… came within physical proximity of the Captain, he should say, he received a faint signal of emotion, as a Betazoid would. He didn't get this from most humans, but he did from Jim.

There was anger, and confusion, but on top of this, glee. Spock found glee to be one of the strangest human emotions he had ever encountered, and he had never fully experienced it himself. The closest he had ever been to doing so was in the presence of his Captain.

The Captain turned his attention away from the Andorian (who slinked back to his girlfriend) and onto Spock. But instead of the guilty grin Spock was anticipating, he received the same look as the Andorian.

Kirk's eyes were not the gleaming, supernova blue he had grown accustomed to. They were flat and cold, as if they did not recognize him.

In the half second when Spock was taken aback, Kirk took his chance. He bit his lower lip and went for it, punching Spock across the face with all his might.

Why did he get to step in? Why did he get to decide what was good for Kirk and what wasn't? Kirk was the Captain! He was in charge, not Spock!

Stupid Vulcan.

Stupid logic.

Stupid super human strength.

With every rebelling thought he had, he sank a punch into Spock's defined cheekbones and nose. The nose Spock loved to tilt down at Kirk in that way, that seemed both patronizing and exhausted. No emotion his ass. Spock barely tolerated Krik and it was time for him to teach Spock a lesson.

And then, suddenly, Spock was fighting back. Kirk blocked a blow to his stomach and kicked out. Spock twisted his foot and Kirk fell to the floor, right on his spine. He let out a strangled cry and wrapped his legs around one of Spock's, trading their positions.

He immediately sent his fist into his first officer's nose one more time.

Show him who's Captain!


He paused- and then saw it.

A trickle of green, coming from Spock's nose. His long fingers came up to wipe it away.

He had broken Spock's nose.

What? That was impossible. Kirk was human. Spock was Vulcan. He was way stronger than Kirk. But there it was. The new curve in Spock's nose. The blood started flowing even more.

Kirk continued to straddle the Vulcan. He couldn't move, couldn't do anything but stare at Spock's face. Spock who'd saved his life. Spock who'd cried when he'd died. Barely died. Whatever. This was the second time he'd drawn fluid from his first officer's face, and this time, it did not give him relief. It just made his blood run faster.

In his drunken, glazed focus, he spotted the communicator on Spock's belt. He took it off and opened it. He pressed a few buttons and finally felt something like "better" when he heard-

"Jesus, Spock, it's three in the morning. I'm a human, not a-"

"It's me, Bones."

"Jim? What's wrong with Spock?" Jim could tell Bones was taken aback. He was used to these calls from him in the middle of the night, but if Kirk was calling from Spock's communicator, there was something seriously wrong.

And there was. Brown eyes, wide, watched all of his actions.

If Kirk didn't know any better, he would say that Spock was afraid of him.

But that was impossible. Not to mention it was maybe the last thing in the universe he wanted Spock to feel about him. Now he was the one who wiped the green blood from Spock's nose and lips. He looked at it, on his hand. Spock looked at his hand too.


"Can you just- come here, Bones?"