Summary: It was believed that Khan's blood had been the miracle remedy, but now it was the very thing that was killing him. Spock lost him once; he wouldn't allow himself to lose him again. Sick!Kirk
Pairing: Kirk/Spock (Slow Build)
Disclaimer: I do NOT own the Star Trek franchise or its characters.
WARNING: This fanfiction will contain illness, graphic violence, and language.
~*STID SPOILER *~
The Needs of The One
Spock was unclear of the reason that prompted this reaction.
Albeit her fluctuating emotions consistently tended to bewilder him and pester him enough to prompt a thorough examination of their relationship upon numerous occasions, it appeared he'd failed in contemplating the possibility that she would tire from conforming to his restrictions. It was strange that he had not assessed the scenario at some point during countless sessions of meditation on the matter. To say he was anything but confounded by the sudden paradigm shift of her personality would be a gross misconception; her solemn demeanor elicited a most illogical response—a peculiar discomfort as he stood in her presence.
"How long?" Her whisper expelled an unspoken desperation. This woman, whom he had courted for 2.3 years—who harbored an incredible will, an aptitude for language, and a staggering intellect—was now deteriorating rapidly before him. She shrank under his gaze in silent defeat, causing her to appear small and fragile. A shell of her former self, if you would.
Inexplicable weighted pressure bore down upon him as though the gravity of the room had increased exponentially—illogical as they were currently aboard an environmentally controlled vessel. Unless the device had succumbed to an unanticipated nullified state—very unlikely—he was momentarily rendered aghast at the sensation. Also quite illogical.
Vulcans do not feel.
"I do not know," He admitted honestly.
The dark depths of her eyes averted away, taken aback by the smile spreading steadily upon her face, conflicting in its nature.
"I would have done anything you wanted me to," She laughed bitterly, "I could have loved you the rest of my life."
Spock was absent of any doubt that her statement was, indeed, genuine.
Her eyes abruptly sought his, pinning him with a cynical glare.
"Do you?" The octaves of her voice lowered; her tone incisive.
Spock fumbled with the baffling concept of Humans' constant compelling need to confirm the depth of his comprehension. Then he realized, perhaps the intention of the question was not to impose discrepancy, but to delve into his introspect of the current situation. A concealed question lurked beneath.
Did you love me?
"I confess that I do not understand," He stated flatly and she instantly deflated.
He did not love her.
"I see," She relented, "When did you become aware it was him?"
A precarious assumption, as he had not enlightened her of that fact. It seems her perceptive skills were another addition to her list of intriguing attributes. Clasping his hands at the small of his back, he regarded her curiously for a moment. He admitted the romantic inclination towards the beginning was rather exceptional. Indulging in forbidden, impetuous activities between a Vulcan professor and a Human student provoked a certain rebellious desire against the laws of Surak, and his father. Perhaps that had been the initial intention, consistently withholding romantic displays under the scrutiny of their peers, only permitting it rarely when initiated by her.
Her eyebrows furrowed, releasing a breath of frustration, "Please don't deny it. I saw the expression on your face after you ran by me on the bridge. I noticed your reaction as he died. You were so distraught; I had to stop you from killing Khan. And the only reason you did stop was because of his name."
Inclining his head, he paused to contemplate his admission to the subject. Humans were easily bruised in these matters and he held no desire to cause any further damage; however, his lack of admission could easily be misconstrued as an act of betrayal.
"I did not intend to harm you."
She sighed dejectedly.
"I know you didn't, but I wish you could've identified this sooner," Pausing for a moment, she whispered softly, "And I wish I had also." Averting her gaze, a glossy sheen settled upon her eyes.
"I apologize, Nyota."
Another frustrated breath escaped her before she was nodding curtly. Pivoting on her heel, she stalked towards the entrance of the observation deck—abruptly halting at the doors. With the curve of her back facing him, her voice quavered as she stated, "I hope he makes you happy."
Simultaneously as she exited, Jim rounded the corner, quickly diverting out of her path as she brushed passed, bristling. Bemused, his eyebrows furrowed, mouth gaping slightly, gawking after her briefly before returning his attention to Spock. As he sauntered inside, Spock mused over the state of his form. The depletion of muscle mass astonished him as he was unable to observe the percentage lost whilst Jim was bedridden. He observed a diminutive and persistent tremble to his frame that seemed unbeknownst to him, a faint flush tainting the ashen skin upon his face—highly disconcerting as the doctor once conveyed his concerns over the potential effects of Khan's blood.
"What's the matter with her?" Jim's voice jarred him from his reserved speculations.
"The mutual status has been nullified and she is…displeased."
The scowl melted from his face, eyebrows hiking slightly in surprise, eyes downcast.
"I see," Shifting his weight absentmindedly, he fidgeted nervously with the hem of the gold tunic, "I'm sorry." He lamented.
A perplexing comment; Jim was not responsible for their separation yet he was apologizing as though he was.
"I do not understand your reason for apologizing when you are not at fault."
Jim gave a noncommittal shrug, "I'm just sorry things didn't pan out since both of you seemed…" He trailed off, eyes fixating on a distant focal point, unfocused as he searched for the right word, "…content?"
Spock arched an eyebrow at his ambiguous comment, "Indeed?"
A pregnant pause filtered through the room as Jim shifted restlessly, tense.
He cleared his throat, "So, I was looking for you," He laughed nervously, hand rubbing feverishly at the nape of his neck, "I need your help running a few diagnostics before we ship off from space-dock." He produced the PADD Spock had somehow overlooked upon his entrance, clutched loosely in his hand, extending it out to him.
"I see," Spock replied, accepting the device, surprised to find it had warmed with the heat of Jim's hand. He scanned the screen—a few minor repairs to re-check, simple tasks that an Ensign could handle. Then he instantly stilled when his eyes ghosted over the words:
Engineering: Warp Core Evaluation
"Captain," A strange constriction occurred in his side, "would it not be more efficient for Mr. Scott to assess the condition of the core?" He inquired, glancing up just as Jim turned away, arms folding over his chest.
"It would," He muttered dismally, "But I can't ask him to."
"It is within his required parameters, my evaluation would—"
"Spock." Jim interjected, voice void of inflection, "Please?" The startling blue hues of his eyes connected with him, a gentle pleading within their depths. Such an odd gesture—Spock struggled to decipher the logic behind offering him a choice. Jim was his commanding officer—Captain—his commands outranked his own. What was his reasoning?
"This is not a command?"
Jim sighed, "No, it's not. If you aren't comfortable with it, I won't force you."
Spock observed as Jim's muscles tensed, his hand gripping his arm until the knuckles glowed white.
"Vulcans do not feel uncomfortable," He proclaimed flatly.
Jim deflated, issuing a lopsided grin which eased the tension from his features. Calm flooded through Spock at the sight, realizing he had involuntarily tensed as well.
"Right, of course they don't." Jim jested, the grin expanding. "C'mon, I'll escort you." Pivoting, he took a few long strides before abruptly losing his bearings, stumbling sideways into the wall.
"Captain!" Spock exclaimed, rushing to his side. Reaching out, he laid his hand upon his shoulder, stunned to find it drenched with perspiration, a remarkable heat radiating from the cloth. Jim panted, the flush illuminating his features a deep shade of crimson, beads of sweat briefly clinging to his brow before streaming down his face toward his jawline. "Are you ill? Shall I alert the Doctor?" He inquired concernedly, shifting his stance to better aid him if he should lose consciousness.
Jim swallowed thickly, clenching his eyes shut as he inhaled slow deep breaths.
"Spock." His voice notably strained, batting Spock's hand away, "I'm all right, just a little disoriented."
This was a lie. He was not "all right". Spock had long ascertained a crucial fact about James Kirk. He bore an insufferable indifference in the matter of his own well-being which caused the already disgruntled CMO to evolve a nearly intolerable demeanor. Spock wasn't quite certain if on occasion the captain would purposely rile the doctor by evading the medical bay when severely injured, inevitably provoking the man to seek Jim on the bridge, resulting in a prolonged cumbersome scene.
"By my speculations, you are not well. I insist I escort you to the medical bay for a thorough examination," He said firmly, bristling as Jim waved him away nonchalantly.
"It's nothing, I'll be fine. I'm heading to the bridge, I'm sure headquarters have already transmitted our first orders by now," Jim muttered expeditiously as he regained his bearings, striding from the room without a second glance.
Spock shook his head slightly.
The man was truly insufferable.
Fear was not logical. It's an emotional hindrance which cripples its victims and Spock would contest to the possibility of ever succumbing to it.
As he descended in the turbolift, he was stunned by an invisible knot coiling in the pit of his stomach, a considerable pressure building in his lungs, hindering his ability to breathe comfortably. Perturbed by the sudden overwhelming sensations, his mind reeled, groping for a subject to distract him from his unease, but to no avail. He hadn't anticipated such a strong reaction as he headed for the engineering sector; it was simply not logical to fear machinery.
The doors hissed open and he departed from the constricted space into the large area aligned with an array of bulky equipment. He strode dutifully through the narrow walks until he reached his destination. The layout remained untarnished, and he was undoubtedly unsettled by the eerie calm.
Almost involuntarily, he padded over to the door, gazing down through the glass and felt a sudden spike of horror as he beheld Jim inching forward, skin blanched, eyes half-lidded and dim. Spock knelt quickly, his hands compressing against the cool glass, heart palpitating with remarkable force—unable to reach him, unable to save him.
Then he blinked.
Jim was gone.
The decontamination chamber was empty, Jim was not inside. He was safe.
Spock released a shaky breath, the pads of his fingers gliding along the smooth surface, regaining his equilibrium. The image had been astonishingly vivid, never experiencing such an astounding occurrence while conscious. His body trembled, the surge of adrenaline ebbing, a recollection permeated the solid mental shields—thrown forcefully into the memory.
"I want you to know why I came back for you, why I couldn't let you die."
The blue eyes were coated with pain, fear—captivating him. Tears spilled down Jim's face in incessant rivers as he helplessly clung onto what little energy he still possessed. Spock's side clenched, wishing he wouldn't exert himself as speaking appeared exceedingly taxing. Jim's painful gasps pierced his ears, eliciting the muscles in his throat to constrict at the sound.
"Because you are my friend."
No. That reason was vague. It wasn't only due to Jim crashing through his social barriers, there was significantly more; however, he lacked the focus to pinpoint it. The brilliant blue eyes returned the unspoken thought, it stirred beneath the dilated pupils. The ghost of an emotion fleeted between them momentarily, Jim's unsteady hand feebly pressing against the glass.
Was this action indicating his need for comfort?
He returned the gesture in the form of the ta'al, gasping softly as Jim adjusted his hand, mirroring his. Was it possible he comprehended its meaning?
Then the blue orbs darted back, staring intently into his, the corner of his mouth twitching —a hint of a smile.
Choking, struggling against the pain, his eyes transfixed on him.
Spock jerked as reality flooded back, the memory receding. Still kneeling, his forehead rested against the door, breathing shallow and ragged as his vision blurred with unshed tears. His loss of control was unacceptable; he required meditation.
"Mr. Spock, can ya hear me, sir?" The Scottish accent blared over the buzzing of the machinery.
He swallowed thickly, fighting against the constricted muscles of his throat, "Yes, Mr. Scott. How may I be of assistance?" He fluidly rose, straightening his tunic with a tug at the hem, clasping his hands at the small of his back, gaze averted.
"Uh well, sir, I was jus' wondering wha' you were doing over here?" A beat, "If this is a bad time…"
Spock glimpsed over to the engineer. His arms hung loosely at his sides, a conflicting expression contorted his features, studying Spock carefully.
"I am merely assessing the functions of the mechanisms inside the core, examining its current status," He informed him expeditiously.
The man's eyebrows furrowed in confusion, "Ah, forgive me, sir, bu' I cannae understand how you are capable of examining anythin' from all tha' way over there?"
He stood straighter, acknowledging his underestimation of the engineer's perception.
"I was thoroughly examining the mechanisms of the doors, their functionality is crucial to the compartment."
The man nodded, eyebrows hiking slightly, a wary smile twitching at the sides of his mouth.
"I can guarantee they are in workin' order, sir."
Spock nodded, "Indeed. As you are the Head Engineer, I will assign you the task of sufficiently examining its functions. After you have finished, you will be required to report to the captain, am I understood?"
Mr. Scott appeared nonplussed for a moment before stating an "aye, sir", allowing Spock to retreat from the area. Jim was anticipating his appearance within the next hour for cast off, but his mind was in a state of chaos, compromising his ability to perform his duties proficiently. It would likely take the engineer an extended amount of time to examine the core, therefore allowing him to seize this small window as an opportunity to return to his private quarters.
"I want you to know why I came back for you, why I couldn't let you die."
He needed to meditate.
A/N: Thank you for reading and please review.