A/N: It's about to get deep and interesting here, folks.


The Needs of The One


Chapter Seventeen


Jim.

James T. Kirk—the name in itself was enough to send his mind reeling. A lifetime of suppression, carefully shaping himself into the Vulcan he'd aspired to be had suddenly been all for naught. The instant this man entered his life, every ounce of self-discipline had seemingly corroded, and he was shoved unceremoniously into the churning sea of chaotic emotions. This man challenged him in every possible measure, evoking a perturbing and compelling need to be at his side. And although Nyota had initially been the one to ease him slightly from his logical mindset, James Kirk was definitely responsible for forcibly yanking him from it.

The confession from his elder counterpart in regards to his own personal relationship with Jim Kirk certainly didn't help matters—prompting inner turmoil, a battle between logic and the newfangled affection towards the zealous blond. Engaging in any kind of intimacy with him would be incredibly irresponsible, especially when he had an obligation to aid in the repopulation of his race. Not to mention the man retained an infamous reputation to bed any female who consented.

Logically speaking, Jim Kirk was not suited as a potential mate.

However, when he finally acknowledged the invisible force—the gravitational pull emanating from the man, he comprehended the fact he couldn't deny its presence. The strength of it was remarkable—unable to resist its call.

T'hy'la.

Suddenly the pieces of the complex puzzle fit together, the ancient word settling in the forefront of his mind—his body instantly responding to the precious rarity he'd found. A T'hy'la bond was treasured amongst his people—incredibly profound and impervious in its nature, it was not to be trifled with.

And he would virtually do anything to preserve it.

An unexpected loud thud dragged him from the recesses of his mind. Flooding back into solid form, he opened his eyes to behold the sight of Jim sitting cross-legged on the floor merely a foot in front of him—crystal blue orbs regarding him studiously, sandy-blond hair unkempt and seemingly defying gravity in random directions. He still appeared peaked, but was evidently striving to maintain the pretense of optimal health. Jim's resolve to disregard his illness was quite impressive; however, he could potentially cause further damage if he continued to elude proper rest—having only been slumbering for 4.5 hours.

There was profound silence for nearly three minutes, both of them riveted on the other before the corner of the man's lips curled slightly in the barest hint of a smile, "You didn't leave."

Jim's voice induced the steady beat of his heart to escalate considerably, "Indeed."

He chuckled softly, "You're not really one to listen to me unless it's a direct command, and even then you tend to argue. I half-expected to wake up to Bones jamming hypos into my neck, and cursing at me for being such an ornery idiot."

Ticking his head slightly, he momentarily considered the statement.

Would Jim comprehend the significance of T'hy'la, and the reason he was unable to refuse his request?

"If your symptoms had exacerbated, I would have taken the initiative to seek the doctor's assistance."

Jim nodded almost imperceptibly, his trademark cocky grin making an appearance, "Was our impromptu make-out session last night that amazing, you're already willing to make concessions?"

Spock's lips twitched at his presumptuous comment, "Vulcans do not 'make-out' or make concessions unless deemed logical to do so."

The grin morphed into an amused smile, articulating the expletive in a precise manner, "Bullshit."

The corner of his mouth twitched once more, quelling the urge to smile, "I believe I do prefer your analogies after all."

Jim belted out a deep laugh, his smile invigorating him, "Either way, you still haven't denied the 'amazing' part."

"Indeed."

The man radiated warmth and light similar to that of a sun, enveloping him in the pleasant heat. Jim was his personal khio'ri—his sun, his home. As long as Jim was near, he would never succumb to the dark.

"You all right?" His smile wavered, the spark in his eyes overlaid by heavy concern, "I mean…you don't already regret…" He trailed off.

He analyzed Jim closely as his body went rigid, spine ramrod straight, adopting a defensive pose—steeling himself to endure the pain of rejection. Spock felt his side clench at Jim's sudden consternation. The very concept of harming his T'hy'la in any conceivable fashion evoked a wave of nausea to burn up his throat.

Absently, his hand extended, cupping Jim's flushed cheek gently, his thumb caressing his cheekbone in an attempt to mitigate his misgivings and ease his distress, "Jim…why do you presume I possess an ulterior motive?"

He released a pent up breath, yet still remained cautious, "I…well…you see…" Floundering, he hastily averted his gaze, desperately groping for a coherent reply—his frantic pulse visible in the crook of his neck, "What is this?" His hand made a wild gesture between them, "What are we?" The brilliant blue orbs darted back, reconnecting with such ferocity, it took him aback slightly, "You've constantly pointed out that you're incapable of emotion. So, why now…why me?"

Jim's self-confidence was quickly unraveling before him, doubt and fear spilling into his eyes—the harrowing mirrored expression of that awful day.

"I'm scared, Spock. Help me not be."

It became transparently clear to him.

Jim was afraid.

"You do not believe I am capable of fidelity?" He gently enquired, refusing to remove his hand from his face despite Jim's best efforts to move away, "Or is it possibly the reverse?" Spock fluidly uncrossed his legs to inch closer, leaning unconcernedly into Jim's personal space.

"Whoa!" Jim exclaimed, eyes widening and falling backward, hands slapping the linoleum flooring, barely successful in keeping himself upright, "I…I never mentioned commitment…" He stammered, his features darkening a deeper shade of crimson—apparently taken off guard by the non sequitur.

"Indeed, you have not; however, I inferred the unspoken subtext based on your blatant insecurity."

Jim scoffed, scrambling away from him and staggered ungracefully to his feet, "I'm not insecure!"

He rose from his crouched position, smoothing the creases of his uniform with a tug at the hem, and regarded Jim who had backed himself against the side table beside the sofa, "On the contrary; you are exhibiting extreme uncertainty as you have previously demonstrated when you pronounced your plan to board the Vengeance."

"That was different, lives were at stake!"

Spock took a small step toward him, folding his arms behind him, and clasping his hands at the small of his back, "Indeed; however, you still imparted your fears to me in that brief moment. You fear losing the illusion of control, therefore the reason you are now panicking."

With an incredulous snort, Jim riposted, "That's not the reason at all!" Shaking his head vigorously, his tone notably abated, "I've never been involved in a committed relationship. I never wanted one. I distanced myself, kept myself detached so I wouldn't…" He trailed off, inhaling a deep breath before reluctantly continuing, "So that neither I nor the person I was with would experience what she felt."

His head ticked slightly in alarm as he instantaneously realized to whom Jim was referring.

"You of all people should know, Cadet Kirk. A captain cannot cheat death."

"Your mother," Spock supplied.

Digging his hands into the pockets of his jeans, Jim feebly kicked the side of the sofa, scrutinizing the floor heavily, "Yeah." Releasing an audible breath, he carried on dejectedly, "I was fine living my life that way. I was fine with the pleasure of temporary company. I didn't think…" Turning away, he kicked the sofa once more, his voice lowering to a soft murmur, "When I heard you were still inside the volcano…" A mirthless chuckle escaped him, "When I didn't know if we'd been able to beam you aboard in time, for a split second…I..."

"Jim…" He took another small step toward the man, inhaling sharply when the blue eyes glanced up—glittering with tears.

"I understood how she felt," He finished with effort, blinking rapidly and clearing his throat in an attempt to regain composure.

A hard lump formed in Spock's throat, desperately desiring to reach out and comfort him, but understood his touch may be unwelcomed at the moment, "I confess I also had a similar experience."

"If that's the case, you're contradicting yourself," He replied with an air of bitterness, understanding the possibility Jim believed his statement had been derisive.

Although it was illogical, he felt compelled to inform him.

"Indeed." That seemed to pique Jim's interest, pinning him with an inquisitive stare, "Although I may never fathom the depth of my father's affliction for my mother, I admittedly experienced a similar pain the moment you drew your final breath…" He trailed off, the memory crashing through the mental barriers.

The blue orbs darted back, staring intently into his, the corner of his mouth twitching—a hint of a smile.

Jim understood.

Choking, struggling against the pain, his eyes transfixed on him.

Then, Jim slipped away.

His face slackened as dim blue eyes unfocused—hand falling limply against the glass. There was a moment of sheer panic, pure disbelief. Death was a natural part of life, it was illogical to mourn. Jim had accomplished his initial duty as captain—protect one's ship and crew—he could not cheat death.

Return…

'And this…this is what you would've done—it's only logical.'

Return to me…

'Truth is…I'm going to miss you.'

Jim…

'I want you to know why I came back for you, why I couldn't let you die.'

JIM!

Rage—boiling rage flooded over him in a blinding red haze. His mental shields obsolete, mind screaming for vengeance as he felt the word rip from his lips in an ear shattering howl, "KHAAAN!"

"Spock!"

He was jarred from the memory, immediately recognizing the light pressure of hands against either side of his face, a swirling dance of extravagant blue orbs mere inches from him—coated heavily with concern.

"Jim…?"

"Okay," Jim breathed, relief washing the tension from his face—his jumbled surface thoughts penetrating his weakened shields, nearly disorienting him, "I'll try." Inhaling a steadying breath, he whispered, "I'll try…for you," Then he bridged the small gap between them, connecting their lips in a gentle, chaste kiss.

Although he wasn't particularly fond of human kissing, Jim's lips seemed to entice him. The affection strangely rendered him pliant, Jim's scent permeating his senses—reveling in his warmth, the reassuring strokes of the man's thumb against his cheek.

T'hy'la…

There wasn't a single doubt in his mind, he would save Jim.

No matter the cost.


The lights of the city glowed brilliantly—vaguely reminding him of the previous night, recalling the sight of Jim silhouetted by the moonlight. San Francisco teemed with life, people bustling about, blissfully unaware that the man who'd nearly demolished Starfleet headquarters was lurking amongst them.

Since the director of the hospital had long since departed for the evening, Spock was required to provide his credentials to security to access the rooftop—stating it was Starfleet related business. After pulling up his information for validation, they permitted him full admittance of the building, accepting his request for privacy due to the classified nature of his visit.

Spock was leery of the specific choice of venue, unable to comprehend Khan's devious recourse. What were his intentions, and how had he managed to access Jim's confidential medical files?

"2200 precisely—you're remarkably punctual, Mr. Spock. Then again, I expected no less from a Vulcan." He whirled around at the voice, beholding the superhuman as he emerged from the shadows—dark eyes regarding him malevolently, a knowing grin expanding on his face, "So glad you could join me. How is the young captain?"

He narrowed his eyes in response.

"Ah. I see you're still a bit sore with me." Casually striding to the edge of the building, he maintained a safe distance from Spock, glancing out to the city with a thoughtful expression, "You've labeled me a reprobate, yet here I am with the intention of benevolence." Giving a considering sidelong glance his direction, Khan continued, "Your affection for Kirk is quite similar in comparison to mine when it comes to my people. We aren't so different, you and I."

"I do not concur with that statement," Spock growled lowly, his hands balling into tight fists.

"Oh?" He turned to face him, "Are you not committing a transgression by acquiescing to my demands? Don't your orders state to apprehend me, drag me back to headquarters?" Accepting Spock's confounded silence as an answer, the man smirked amusedly, "Yet you came alone, resolved to save Kirk's life even if it puts yours at great risk," He said pointedly, "How sentimental."

Stiffly folding his arms behind him, Spock clasped his shaky hands at the small of his back, something hot and unpleasant stirring within his core, "I must advise you, Khan," The name was like venom on his lips, "If you fail to disclose the information, I will cease cooperation, and turn you over to the proper authorities."

The man heaved a heavy sigh.

"Then arrest me," He replied listlessly, eyes sweeping over the city once more, "Although, I can guarantee it wouldn't be very beneficial to your cause."

Narrowing his eyes once more, he intoned suspiciously, "What is it you desire?" His physique vibrated with repressed anger, squashing the urge to pummel the man into the ground to attain the remedy he desperately required.

Unexpectedly closing the large gap with a few long strides, Khan unconcernedly encroached on his personal space, murmuring mere inches from his face, "You haven't answered my question. What would you do to save the one you care for, Mr. Spock?"


A/N: Just a heads up, my life took an unprecedented turn and is extremely hectic at the moment. My updates may go a bit longer than usual, but it doesn't mean I've forgotten or abandoned my stories. There are certain things that need my attention at the moment, so I apologize for the delay. Thanks for reading and please review!