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Star Trek XIII - Welcome to Tomorrow
Captain's Log, Stardate 2261.74
'Travelling on impulse only, we're slowly approaching the fourth planet of an as yet unnamed solar system. Our scans have determined that this planet, roughly half the mass of Earth and with what seems to be one single ocean occupying just under a quarter of its surface, belongs to class M.'
Kirk paused the recording, taking a moment to observe the blue from the water below.
'The rest of the planet seems to be covered by a thick layer of vegetation making it appear brilliant green. For this reason, our Communications Officer Lieutenant Uhura has suggested we christen it Kijani, the Swahili word for green. We will now continue our preliminary exploration to determine if it's safe for us to send out an away team. Kirk out.'
'Closing in exospheric orbit, Captain,' said Lieutenant Sulu.
'Thank you, Mr Sulu,' Kirk replied.
He got up from his chair and made his way around the bridge's central console to stand in front of the viewscreen. From there, he continued to observe the planet noticing how the vegetation appeared to be even more abundant from their current position. It looked incredibly peaceful.
'It's nice,' he heard Dr Marcus soft voice saying.
'It is,' Kirk agreed repressing the urge to grab her tiny hand in his.
For the umpteenth time since they had consummated their newborn relationship, barely a week ago, he wondered how Uhura and Spock managed to be a couple while literally sharing their workspace and also for the umpteenth time, he reminded himself that he wasn't Spock and didn't have anywhere near his level of control when it came to his emotions. It didn't help that, when it came to longer-than-a-night relationships, Jim Kirk was just like his beloved ship: travelling into uncharted territory.
'It'd be nice to go down there and explore it together,' Dr Marcus muttered, surprising him.
'I was thinking the same,' Kirk admitted.
'Really?' she asked him, with just a hint of disbelief.
'Of course,' Kirk said, 'it would be a great place for us to have our first official date.'
With immense satisfaction, he saw a very faint blush appearing on her cheeks and, just as he thought she would, she looked around herself as if she wanted to be sure no one had heard him. Kirk was about to reassure her that their secret was safe when he saw his best friend Dr Leonard McCoy entering the bridge.
'Are we there yet?' he asked skipping pointless pleasantries.
'We are,' Kirk replied offering him a smile, 'take a look. It looks nice, doesn't it?'
'If you say so,' Dr McCoy said obviously humouring him, 'at least is not one of those damned F Class planets you've been dragging us to. I swear Jim, sometimes I think you enjoy seeing me in trouble.'
'That's not true,' Kirk defended himself, 'besides, the last one wasn't that bad.'
'Wasn't that bad?' Dr McCoy sneered, 'we had two separate earthquakes, a freaky sandstorm and if it hadn't been for our biosuits, the poisonous atmosphere would have killed us instantly. Space is…'
'Okay, okay,' Kirk hurried to interrupt his best friend before he launched in yet another litany of how space was a disastrous concentration of disease and danger, 'where's Spock?'
'I'm a doctor Jim, not his babysitter,' Dr McCoy replied.
'Very funny,' Kirk retorted sarcastically, 'Uhura, have you seen Spock?'
'No, sir,' the Communications Officer said, 'he was supposed to start his shift five minutes ago.'
'That's weird,' Kirk commented as if he were talking to himself, 'he's never late.'
Returning to his seat, he pulled out his personal communicator, keying in the code for Spock's device. He waited for a reply but to his astonishment and increasing concern, his call was met with silence.
'Is he not picking up?' Dr McCoy asked sounding slightly sardonic.
'No, he's not,' Kirk replied seriously. He then pressed a button on the armrest of his chair and said, 'computer, locate Commander Spock.'
'Commander Spock is in his quarters,' the computer's artificial voice replied.
'Computer, connect me with Commander Spock's quarters,' Kirk ordered.
'Impossible to comply,' the computer announced, 'Commander Spock's intercom is offline.'
'Mr Sulu,' a definitely worried Kirk said, 'you have the conn.'
'Yes, sir,' Sulu replied.
'Mr Chekov,' Kirk then added, 'have a security detail meet me outside Mr Spock's quarters.'
'Aye, Captain,' the young ensign said, nervousness thickening his native Russian accent.
'Dr Marcus,' he said now sounding utterly professional, 'please continue scanning the planet's surface, try to find out if it's inhabited and if we can breathe on our own without the biosuits.'
'Yes, sir,' she said.
He had barely made it to the turbolift when he was joined by Uhura. The xenolinguist looked as anxious as the Captain did and, for once, Kirk decided to waive protocol and allow the officer board the turbolift with him without her asking for permission to leave the bridge. Too concerned to talk, the pair made their way to the deck below, the one which contained the rooms belonging to the bridge officers. Spock's was sandwiched between Kirk's and Dr McCoy's, not too far from Uhura's.
Six burly looking men were already waiting for him.
'The room's locked, sir,' one of them supplied, 'and Commander Spock is not answering.'
'Is he alone?' Kirk then asked.
'Yes, sir,' the man replied, 'we're waiting for your orders, Captain.'
Kirk acknowledged and made his way to the door. Listening in through the thick barrier, he could tell that his First Officer was moving around inside the room. At least, Kirk noted with relief, he appeared to be conscious. The Captain was about to press the intercom's button when, to his utmost shock, he heard a primal scream and then the sound of an object crashing against a wall.
'Spo…' Uhura started but Kirk stopped her. His quick brain had already made the connection.
God help them all, he thought. Unless he was very much mistaken, his First Officer had just entered an obscure Vulcan biological phase called pon farr.
To be continued…