Four Days Later

"Captain, we are in orbit of New Vulcan," Jim heard Nyota's voice report. "Awaiting orders."

Jim was silent for a moment as he lingered outside of Sickbay, "Tell Commander Spock to inform the High Command of our arrival and start authorizing crew members to go down to New Shi'Kahr in groups," he replied into his communicator. "I'll come down to the surface as soon as I can. Kirk out."

Swallowing hard, Jim pocketed his communicator and silently entered Sickbay, smiling as he saw Pavel sitting on a biobed in loose clothes with a hand over his abdomen, "Keptin?" Pavel asked quietly.

"How are you feeling today, Pavel?" Jim asked in a gentle voice, worried at how tired Pavel looked.

Pavel sighed, "Wery sore, Keptin," he replied softly, sighing as Leonard came over to him pushing an empty wheelchair. "Vhen I get back to my quarters, I am going to have a wery long sleep."

"Pavel, we're stopping at New Vulcan for the holiday and I was wondering if you would like to go down to the city for a little recuperation?" Jim asked in a gentle voice, figuring that Pavel would try and refuse.

Pavel, however, silently looked at Leonard, "I am wery tired and vould not enjoy being alone down on ze planet," he replied in a nervous voice. "Eef you vant to take your families down zere, I vill be fine alone."

Leonard and Jim exchanged a concerned look, "I do not vish to be a bozzer," Pavel spoke nervously.

"Well, I was thinking that you could come down to the city with my sons and I," Jim replied gently. "My brother's going to stay up here with his son and his wife and I could really use a hand with the boys."

Pavel looked at the floor and didn't say anything, "I'd like you to at least think about it," Jim continued softly, knowing full well that Pavel would react this way. "Doctor McCoy can release you now, right?"

"Captain Kirk, the Vulcan High Command has advised us that they will be sending a party up in a shuttlecraft and that senior personnel should meet them in the hangar deck," Nyota's voice spoke.

Jim frowned as he took his communicator out, "Uhura?" he asked, frowning when he got no reply.

"I vill not greet ze dewegation in a vheelchair," Pavel said weakly as he shakily got to his feet. "I need to go change into my proper uneeform and practeece my diplomatic protocol. Eet has been a vhile…"

Leonard sighed, "You can walk, but only if Jim and I go with you," he replied in a gentle, but firm voice.

Pavel nodded and wrapped his arms around himself protectively, "Let's head up there," Jim said softly.

"Lieutenant McGivers, you have a visitor," Giotto's voice spoke over the intercom in Marla's quarters.

Marla sighed as she stood up from the bed where she had just tucked Joachim in after a long night of talking, eating, and trying to adjust to the 'house arrest' she was now under. Arianne, Marla reflected as she went to the door, had pled for leniency and Captain Kirk had confined her to quarters under guard.

The door slid open and Arianne stood there next to Giotto, "How are you doing, Marla?" she asked in a gentle voice as she smiled at the nervous looking Lieutenant. "I thought I'd come visit you for a bit."

"I'm grateful that you got me out of the Brig so that I could be with my son, Arianne," Marla replied in a nervous voice as she stepped aside to let Arianne and Giotto inside. "When am I going to go on trial?"

Arianne sighed, "After the holidays," she replied somberly. "The trial will be held on Earth."

Marla nodded and sighed, "It was good of you to come by," she replied softly. "Joachim is sleeping."

"Marla, I can understand that you don't want to talk, but it will go better for you at the trial if it's on the record that you've had some post-incident counseling," Arianne said in a quiet voice. "You know that."

Marla nodded, but looked towards the door, "Well, you know how to get a hold of me if you want to talk," Arianne replied in a concerned voice as she backed up towards the door. "See you later on."

"See you later on," Marla replied softly only after the door was closed and Arianne had long gone.

"Shuttlecraft docking in Hangar Bay One," a voice spoke over the intercom as Jim, Pavel, and Leonard lingered outside of the sealed Hangar Bay. "Shuttlecraft has landed and bay is repressurizing."

Pavel frowned, "Vhere is ze rest of ze senior staff?" he asked in a concerned voice. "Ze shuttle eez here."

"They're on their way, I'm sure," Jim replied in a reassuring voice as the doors opened. "Come on."

Pavel trembled as he followed Jim and Leonard into the Hangar Bay, immediately taking a step back at the sight of the regal looking shuttle before him, "I am not ewen in uniform," he said anxiously.

Before Jim or Leonard could reply, the ramp came down and a moment later, President Pike, who was dressed in a Starfleet dress uniform complete with pips and his President's insignia, slowly came down the ramp and over to the men with the assistance of walking sticks that were attached to his forearms.

"Captain Kirk, Doctor McCoy," Chris said in a formal tone, frowning as Pavel immediately looked down.

There was silence as Chris's gaze softened, "Ensign Chekov?" he asked in a quiet voice. "Look at me."

Pavel trembled as he looked up at Chris with wide eyes and was surprised when Chris gently touched his cheek, "Pavel, I'm so glad you're safe and sound," Chris said in a compassionate voice. "My boy…"

Tears of relief filled Chris's eyes and he gently put his arms around Pavel, gently pulling the young Ensign into a warm embrace. At first, Pavel stood there stiffly, but then he slowly allowed himself to relax.

"I do not vish Marla to get into trouble, sir," Pavel spoke softly as he slowly pulled away from Chris.

Jim and Leonard both looked astounded, but Chris gave Pavel a curious look, "Eet vould not be fair to her son to grow up vithout a mozzer," Pavel said in a nervous voice. "I could not do zat to a child."

"Pavel, Marla attempted to injure you and she ended up killing Mister Tomlinson in the process," Jim spoke up in a concerned voice, wondering if Pavel was serious or merely having a traumatic episode.

Chris immediately saw a shadow of pain cross Pavel's face and he held up a hand to silence Jim, "This is not the place to be discussing this, Captain," he said in a concerned voice. "Now, Ambassador Sarek and a team of engineers have come along with me to help your ship enough to get it back to Earth and while the engineers are working, I thought Ambassador Sarek and I would visit with our families and friends."

Just then, Ambassador Sarek, two aides, and several Vulcan engineers, all of whom were carrying repair equipment, came down the ramp, "Ambassador Sarek," Jim spoke gently. "Welcome to the Enterprise."

"Thank you, Captain," Ambassador Sarek replied tonelessly, giving Chris, Leonard, and Pavel a nod.

A stab of pain rocketed through Pavel's abdomen and he inhaled sharply, subtly stepping back towards the door as he placed a hand over his abdomen, "Ensign Chekov?" Chris asked in a worried voice.

"I am wery sore and a leetle tired, sir," Pavel replied softly. "I can vait until eweryone is settled, zo."

Chris's eyes narrowed and he looked at Jim, "Pavel, come on, I'll walk you to my family's quarters so you can get some rest," Leonard spoke up, seeing that Pavel was trying not to be a bother to anyone.

"I-I just vant to be by myself," Pavel stuttered nervously, not daring to look at Ambassador Sarek.

Before anyone could reply, Pavel slowly left the hangar deck with a hand on his abdomen, "Ambassador, I'll show your engineers where they can help us," Jim spoke up, clearly uneasy about Pavel's departure.

Ambassador Sarek nodded and he, his aides, and the Vulcan engineers all left the hangar deck with Jim, but Leonard and Chris lingered behind, "If you have a moment, Doctor McCoy, I'd like to talk to you," Chris said in a concerned voice, deeply worried about how much damage had been done to Pavel.

"Why don't we chat in my office?" Leonard replied in a concerned voice. "It will be private there."

"Commander Spock, you summoned me to the Bridge?" Arianne asked in a tired voice as she came up to the command chair where Spock was sitting, having been summoned on her way back to the Rec Room.

Spock turned his head towards her and nodded, "I am curious as to whether or not you would be opposed to taking command for a brief period of time so that I am able to greet Ambassador Sarek and our other visitors," he stated tonelessly. "Commander Scott is preoccupied with repairs in Engineering."

"I would be happy to take command for a while," Arianne replied quietly. "Spend time with your father."

Spock was silent for a moment, "Are you amenable to providing counseling to me after Captain Kirk comes back on duty?" he asked tonelessly. "Nyota and I have had some discussions about Saavik."

"Of course, Commander," Arianne replied gently. "You know the door is open when you want to talk."

Spock nodded, "Spock, on your way to meet with your father, could you do me a favor?" Arianne asked softly as her worry kicked in. "Could you please go by Ensign Chekov's quarters and see how he's doing since he was supposed to be released from Sickbay today? I'm hoping to talk to him as soon as I can."

Spock nodded and silently made his way up to the turbolift while Arianne sat down and gazed outward.

Little did anyone know, however, that Joanna had excused herself from school activities and had gotten a small 'get well package' together before going to Pavel's quarters for a brief visit with her dear friend.

"Pavel?" Joanna called out softly as she pressed the door buzzer. "Pavel, it's Joanna. I have some…"

The door slid open and a tired looking Pavel stood there in his civvies with a hand on his abdomen, "I brought you a few things," Joanna explained as she held out the small bag. "How are you feeling?"

"Wery tired and a leetle sick," Pavel replied groggily. "I vas trying to make myself some tea."

Joanna nodded, "Would you like some help?" she asked softly. "I have some time and I don't mind."

Pavel nodded and stepped aside to let Joanna enter, "I hawe to use ze bathroom, but you are velcome to use ze replicator," he said in a nervous voice as the doors slid shut. "Zank you for wisiting me."

Joanna nodded and waited until Pavel had disappeared into the bathroom before she put the bag on his table and went over to the replicator. She silently inputted the command for a warm chamomile lemon tea with honey that would be sure to relax Pavel and was waiting for it when she heard a loud scream.

"Pavel, are you all right?" Joanna asked in a concerned voice as she hurried over to the bathroom door.

There was silence and then suddenly, the sound of glass breaking followed by an anxious howl filled the room, "Pavel!" Joanna shouted as she banged on the door. "Pavel Chekov! Open the door right now!"

Without warning, the doors to Pavel's quarters slid open and Spock entered, "Commander Spock, something's wrong and I can't get the bathroom door open," Joanna said anxiously, gazing at Spock.

Not bothering to ask what Joanna was doing there, Spock strode over to the door and swiftly opened it using the emergency command code. The mirror was smashed and Pavel was kneeling on the floor with his arms wrapped around himself and although he was conscious, he was breathing very heavily.

"Ensign Chekov?" Spock asked in a toneless voice as he gently placed a hand on Pavel's shoulder.

Pavel tensed up, "Joanna, please assist me in removing Ensign Chekov from this bathroom," Spock stated in a toneless voice, sighing as Joanna moved into the bathroom. "Be careful around the glass."

Joanna nodded and remained silent as she helped Spock get Pavel to his feet and out of the damaged bathroom, "I'm going to get Pavel on to the couch," Joanna said in an anxoius voice. "Call my dad."

Spock watched as Joanna helped Pavel over to the couch and helped him to lie down before he reached into his pocket and pulled out his communicator, "Spock to Doctor McCoy," he said in a toneless voice.


"How's the chemotherapy going, Leonard?" Chris asked in a concerned voice as he watched Leonard get two cups of tea before coming over to the desk and offering him one. "You're looking slightly paler."

Leonard scowled as he sat down, "Did Arianne tell you?" he asked gruffly as he swilled his tea.

"You're a member of Starfleet and you asked a Vulcan healer for help with a medical issue," Chris replied in a formal voice. "Any requests like that have to be approved by the President of Starfleet."

Leonard sighed, "Doctor T'Pan must have called you while I was waiting for the results of the scan," he replied in a slightly irritated voice. "I think the chemotherapy is causing a little anemia, but I'm fine."

"Why don't you go down to see Doctor T'Pan and make sure that everything's fine?" Chris asked in a concerned voice as he gave Leonard a parental look. "To be perfectly honest, you look like crap."

Leonard scoffed, but before he could reply, he saw that his communicator was beeping and so he picked it up off his desk, "McCoy here," he said in a gruff tone, ignoring the look Chris was giving him.

"Doctor McCoy, Ensign Chekov is in his quarters and in need of medical assistance," Spock's voice spoke tonelessly. "I am here with Miss McCoy and she is making him comfortable, but your assistance is…"

Leonard's eyes widened at hearing Joanna was in Pavel's quarters, but he decided to deal with that later, "Let me get some supplies and I'll come right away," he replied as he stood. "McCoy out."

Chris frowned as he watched Leonard suddenly falter and grab the desk for support, "I just stood up too quickly," Leonard said gruffly, trying his best to ignore the sudden weakness he felt. "I'm perfectly fine."

Swallowing hard, Leonard released the desk and walked over to the door, "Either make an appointment to go down and see Doctor T'Pan or have Doctor Piper give you a scan," Chris said in a very firm voice.

"Alright," Leonard grunted in a semi-tired voice as he left the office to get supplies and go help Pavel.

"Commander McCoy, I was wondering if you had a moment?" Yeoman Rand asked softly as she approached the chair where Arianne was sitting, quietly holding down the fort until Jim returned.

Arianne nodded and she looked at Yeoman Rand, "I was wondering if Joanna was feeling all right today?" Yeoman Rand asked in a concerned voice. "Yeoman Jones and I were in the middle of working with the younger ones when Joanna suddenly gathered her things and left without so much as a word."

"Ever since the fiasco with Tonia Barrows, Joanna hasn't felt comfortable staying in the school room for the entire day," Arianne replied in a patient voice. "Still, Joanna should have said she was leaving."

Yeoman Rand nodded, "Thank you for bringing it to my attention," Arianne replied gently. "I'll talk to Joanna later on after Captain Kirk returns to the Bridge. I'll also let Joanna's father know of this."

"Commander, can I get you something from the Mess?" Yeoman Rand asked softly. "You need to eat."

Arianne silently gazed at the chronometer that was above the viewscreen, "Perhaps a cup of tea for now, Yeoman," she replied softly, not feeling all that hungry. "I'll eat something when I go off duty."

Even though Yeoman Rand looked as if she wanted to argue, she nodded silently and left the Bridge.

"…This is a most impressive warp core," Jim heard Charlie Evans say in an intrigued voice. "Really cool."

A curious expression materialized on Jim's face as he, Ambassador Sarek, and a couple of Vulcan engineers came through Engineering and saw Charlie Evans and Lorian standing in front of the deactivated warp core, "Are you enjoying looking at the warp core, boys?" Jim asked gently.

"Father, Charlie Evans was merely curious about Starfleet technology and found the prospect of investigating it more enlightening than school," Lorian replied tonelessly. "I was finished my work."

Jim's eyes narrowed and he gave Lorian a parental look, "Sir, it was my idea to come look around Engineering since we've spent a lot of time in Commander Scott's office already," Charlie Evans spoke up nervously, not wanting Lorian to get into trouble. "Besides, Admiral Marcus said we could hang out."

"Admiral Marcus is in Engineering?" Jim asked in a skeptical voice. "Why would Admiral Marcus…?"

There were footsteps and Admiral Marcus suddenly came into view wearing a work jumpsuit over his Admiral's uniform holding a hand-scanner, but his pips were still visible, "Why Captain Kirk, what a surprise to see you down in Engineering," he said politely. "Ambassador Sarek, welcome."

"Lorian and Charlie Evans said you gave them permission to be here, Admiral," Jim stated softly.

Admiral Marcus nodded as he smiled at the two boys, "I know they're not old enough to do much in the way of repairs, Captain, but I thought they might like a little learning experience," he replied calmly. "I haven't let them touch anything, but I've been explaining a bit about the systems to them…"

"Dad, I fixed it!" Anthony's excited voice suddenly carried across Engineering. "Come and look!"

Admiral Marcus smiled and Jim followed after him as he followed Anthony's voice to a small console that was adjacent to the warp core. Anthony was standing proudly next to the functioning console with a tool in his hand while a small box of tools sat at his feet. Admiral Marcus beamed at Anthony's work.

"Well done, son," Admiral Marcus replied, more pleased that Anthony wasn't thinking about Carol.

Anthony grinned and then went very quiet as he turned away from the small crowd, "I think that Anthony and I are going to take a little break now, Captain," Admiral Marcus said gently. "Anthony?"

For a moment, Anthony was silent and then he nodded, "A break sounds good, Dad," he replied softly.

Admiral Marcus sighed as Anthony turned around, "Can we go visit Doctor Kirk and Peter?" Anthony asked in a false eager voice as he gazed at his father. "I think they're in the schoolroom today."

"Of course we can," Admiral Marcus replied gently, relieved that Anthony was trying to fit in so well.

As Anthony and Admiral Marcus left Engineering, Scotty came out of the warp core chamber wearing a radiation-proof suit and helmet, taking care to seal the door before he removed his helmet, "Scotty, how are repairs coming?" Jim asked in an amused voice. "I see you've garnered some fans."

"Did ye boys get your work done?" Scotty asked pleasantly as he looked at Lorian and Charlie Evans.

Lorian nodded, "Then perhaps you boys should take a break tae get some lunch," Scotty stated firmly.

"May I return to Engineering after my meal is finished?" Lorian asked tonelessly. "I quite enjoy it."

Scotty sighed, "There will be too many doing a lot of dangerous work in here, but you boys can come back tomorrow," he replied in a firm voice. "I know ye like Engineering, but it was the hardest hit."

Before Jim could chime in, his communicator beeped, "Spock to Kirk," Spock's voice spoke tonelessly.

"Kirk here," Jim replied as he pulled his communicator out and opened it. "What is it, Spock?"

There was an uneasy silence, "President Pike has requested an emergency meeting," Spock replied.

"An emergency meeting?" Jim replied in a confused voice. "Why would Pike call a meeting?"

Spock sighed, "Captain, President Pike merely requested that you come to Ensign Chekov's quarters as quickly as possible," he replied in a toneless voice. "He also requested Commander McCoy's presence."

"Scotty, I'll need you to go to the Bridge and relieve Commander McCoy," Jim said in a quiet voice.

Scotty nodded, "I'm on my way, Spock," Jim stated before he shut the communicator. "Lorian, Mister Evans, please go to the Rec Room and stay with the rest of the children until the end of the day."

Deeply worried that something else had happened to Pavel, Jim waited until Lorian and Charlie Evans had left the room before he left the room. Scotty waited only a moment before leaving the room.

Soft talking was the first thing Pavel heard as he slowly drifted back into awareness and he immediately felt that he was somewhere warm and soft, "Daddy, I think Pavel's waking up," he heard Joanna say.

Pavel gasped anxiously as he suddenly felt a hand on his forehead, "Pavel, it's all right," he heard Leonard say in a concerned, but calming voice. "It's Doctor McCoy. Can you open your eyes for me?"

Feeling a wave of nausea wash over him, Pavel slowly opened his eyes and saw that he was in his bed propped up by pillows and that Leonard, Joanna, and Spock were all standing at his bedside, "V-vat happened?" he asked in an anxious voice, confused as to why he was in bed. "Vhy does my hand…?"

"You projected your hand through your bathroom mirror, Ensign Chekov," Spock replied tonelessly.

Pavel was silent as he suddenly remembered seeing images of Khan taunting him in the mirror and it terrifying him so much that he struck back, "You've got about fifteen stitches in your right hand and wrist," Leonard explained, seeing the discomfort in Pavel's face. "Why did you punch the mirror?"

Deeply afraid of being seen as crazy and ostracized, Pavel lowered his head, "Doctor, I believe Ensign Chekov is not able to explain what he saw, but there is a way to discover what he saw," Spock stated tonelessly as he looked at Leonard. "I would like to initiate a mind meld with Ensign Chekov."

Leonard glanced at Pavel, who didn't react, "I'll monitor Pavel and if the meld starts to hurt his biosigns, break it off," he replied in a concerned voice. "Pavel, just relax; Spock is going to do a mind meld."

Pavel tensed up slightly, but said nothing as Spock gently placed his hands on the young Ensign's face and closed his eyes. Joanna silently watched, clinging to her father's arm nervously, but very quietly.

Spock found himself standing behind Pavel as the younger man silently sealed himself in the small bathroom that was in the Ensign's quarters. Pavel was standing at the sink, silently splashing water on his face and trying to smooth his messy hair into place, occasionally pausing to bend over the sink.

"Pavel Chekov, do you remember me?" Khan's voice suddenly broke the silence. "My prisoner!"

Spock frowned when he saw a shadow of Khan materialize in the mirror, "I will never forget you, Pavel, and I know you will never be able to forget me," Khan hissed as he extended a shadowy fist outward.

"You are not real!" Pavel said in an anxious voice as he began to tremble anxiously. "NO!"

Khan chuckled evilly and just a moment later, Pavel drew his fist back and smashed it into the mirror, sending pieces and blood everywhere. Gasping anxiously, Pavel collapsed to his knees and vomited.

Spock inhaled sharply as he ended the meld and opened his eyes, "I em wery tired," Pavel said in a tight voice, having been physically and emotionally worn down by the meld. "Vould it be okay to sleep?"

Leonard nodded, "I'm going to give you a mild sedative so you don't wake up in nightmares," he replied in a concerned voice as he pulled a hypospray out of his bag and loaded it. "It won't hurt at all, okay?"

Tears of exhaustion filled Pavel's eyes as Leonard administered the hypospray and moved back, "I'll check in on you later," Leonard said gently as Pavel drifted off to sleep. "Joanna, let's let him rest."

Joanna reluctantly nodded and left the bedroom with her father and Spock, instantly surprised to see her grandfather, mother, and Captain Kirk in the sitting room, "Can we please do this tomorrow, Jim and Chris?" Leonard asked in a gruff voice, suddenly feeling nauseous and dizzy. "I have to go lie down now."

"Len, are you all right?" Arianne asked in a worried voice, frowning at how out of it her husband looked.

Swallowing hard, Leonard silently edged along the wall and promptly sank to the floor unconscious near the door, "Len!" Arianne said in an anxious voice as she got up and hurried over to her husband's form.

"Bones?" Jim asked in a concerned voice, grabbing Joanna's arm to keep her from crowding her father.

Chris sighed and silently got his communicator out of his pocket, "Doctor Piper, this is President Pike," he said in a concerned, but very calm voice. "Please report to Ensign Chekov's quarters immediately with a stretcher and some orderlies. Doctor McCoy has passed out and is in need of medical attention."

"I'm all right," Leonard said in a weak voice even though he didn't open his eyes. "I just need a minute."

Chris scowled, "I'm on my way," Dr. Piper replied urgently. "Keep him comfortable until I get there."

A flurry of noise jerked Leonard out of the nap he had been having while waiting along with Dr. Piper to hear back from Dr. Sonak about a scan, "PAPA!" he heard Charlie yell in an anxious voice.

"Charlie, you can't yell in Sickbay," Leonard heard Arianne say in a calm voice as he slowly worked the bed controls so he could see everything without having to sit up and risk passing out again. "Len?"

Leonard sighed as Arianne approached the bed with a nervous looking Joanna, Charlie, Kathy, and Zachary in tow, "Papa, are you sick?" Charlie asked worriedly. "From that cancer thing you have?"

"I saw no reason to keep your illness from our children," Arianne replied gently at Leonard's look.

Leonard nodded, "Papa, are we all gonna get cancer because you have it?" Zachary asked worriedly.

"Zachary, I have cancer because I was exposed to some very bad radiation a long time ago before you were even born," Leonard replied gently. "I got treated by a doctor for that, but the treatment failed."

Kathy's lower lip trembled, "Papa, are you gonna die from the cancer?" she asked in a fearful voice.

Leonard was trying to think of a reply when he saw Jim slip out of Sickbay, having heard the last few comments including the one about him dying, "Crap," he said in a tired voice. "Jim overheard that."

"Papa, are you gonna die?" Charlie asked in an anxious voice. "I could always bring Porthos to visit you."

Leonard sighed patiently, "I'm not going to die," he replied tiredly. "Don't bring Porthos in here, okay?"

"Len, I'll find Jim after I put the younger kids to bed," Arianne promised gently. "Jo can watch them."

Joanna smiled and gently tapped her father's IV laden hand, "I don't know if Doctor Piper will want to keep me overnight or have me go down to New Vulcan right away," Leonard said in a tired voice, struggling hard to fight the urge to sleep. "I just want you kids to please listen to your mother, okay?"

Dr. Piper suddenly came out of the office and was unsurprised to see Arianne and the children at Leonard's bedside, "Arianne, kids, I'd like to talk to Doctor Piper alone," Leonard said in a tired voice as he saw the expression on Dr. Piper's face. "Arianne, can you come back later so we can talk alone?"

"Yes," Arianne replied gently, understanding Leonard's need to talk to Doctor Piper alone first.

There was a heavy silence as Arianne and Joanna ushered Charlie, Kathy, and Zachary out of Sickbay and Dr. Piper sat on the stool beside Leonard's bed, "Well, let's have it," Leonard said in a tired voice.

Hours had passed and all underage ship members were safely in their assigned cabins; all except for Sam, who had decided he was hungry and wanted to spend some time alone with Peter in the Mess Hall. After securing his quarters, Sam had carried Peter to the Mess with his good arm.

What Sam didn't expect to see in the Mess Hall was Jim sitting at a table near the window with a large mug in his hand and tears streaming down his face, "Jim?" Sam asked softly. "Are you all right?"

"Bones has cancer and he might die," Jim replied sorrowfully as he took a swig from his mug.

Sam frowned as he approached the table, "Jim, you should be in your quarters resting since you're not on duty," he replied, hearing exhaustion in Jim's voice. "Lorian and George are probably missing you."

"If I go to my quarters, can you and Peter stay tonight?" Jim asked in a tired voice. "I'm scared."

Sam nodded, "I just want to get some food for Peter and I first, okay?" he asked softly. "Could you hold Peter for me while I do that, please? It's really hard to hold him with one arm and I need it to get food."

Jim nodded, set his mug down, and reluctantly took Peter, making faces at the tired infant while Sam carefully got some food containers from the replicator, "I thought President Pike would be staying in your quarters, Jim," Sam commented as he came back to the table with the food. "Let's go, shall we?"

It didn't take long for Jim and Sam to get back to Jim's quarters with Peter and the food, "Pike's staying with Ensign Chekov for tonight," Jim said as he, Sam and Peter entered his quarters. "Boys?"

Almost immediately, Lorian came out of the bedroom he and George shared, "Father, George had a light meal and went to bed," he explained in a quiet voice. "I have eaten, but I still have much work to do."

"The work can wait until tomorrow, Lorian," Jim replied gently. "I want you to go to bed right away."

Sam set the food containers down on the counter as Lorian stepped forward and silently gave Jim a gentle hug, which Jim returned before watching Lorian go into his bedroom, "George and I are the only people who Lorian will hug," Jim commented softly, seeing Sam's intrigued expression. "He feels safe…"

"I wouldn't even hug Aurelan when we first started dating," Sam replied softly. "I was too nervous."

Jim nodded understandingly, "I'll get Peter ready for bed," he replied calmly. "You go ahead and eat."

Sam nodded gratefully and sat down at the counter while Jim carried Peter into his bedroom.

Anxiously tugging at the cloak that was covering his uniform, Leonard silently entered the transporter room and was relieved to find it empty, "Is someone there?" he suddenly heard Scotty ask tiredly.

Leonard froze when Scotty came up behind the console with a scanner in hand, "Doctor McCoy, how come you're in the transporter room this late?" the Scotsman asked, frowning at Leonard's nervousness.

"Scotty, can you beam me to these co-ordinates, please?" Leonard asked as he held out a small PADD.

Scotty took the PADD and silently inputted the co-ordinates into the console, "Does the Captain know that you're planning to beam down?" he asked gently as Leonard stepped up on the transporter pad.

Before Leonard could reply, the doors slid open and Arianne came into the room wearing a long coat over her uniform, "Doctor Piper told me I'd find you here," she commented softly. "I'm coming."

Leonard sighed as Arianne joined him on the pad, "Joanna's taking care of Charlie, Kathy, and Zachary and I left a message with Spock about what we were doing," Arianne explained softly. "He'll tell Jim."

"Thank you," was all Leonard could say as Arianne gently wrapped her arms around him and held him.

Arianne nodded and looked to Scotty, "Mister Scott, energize," she said in a commanding voice.

The door chime brought Spock out of the focus he was applying to the message that Arianne had sent him, but he didn't move from his computer, "Who could be calling at this hour?" Nyota asked in a tired voice as she came out of Saavik and Amanda's bedroom and answered the door. "Ambassador Sarek?"

Spock looked up from the computer just in time to see his father enter their quarters, "Father, it is rather late in the evening for you to be awake and visiting us," he commented tonelessly as he stood.

"Spock, I asked Sarek to come," Nyota replied in a quiet voice. "We both need to talk to him."

Spock raised an eyebrow, but said nothing, "Ambassador, I have talked with Arianne, Saavik, and Amanda and I've come to a decision about Saavik," Nyota said in a calm voice as she looked at Spock and Sarek. "I would like to make Saavik part of our family, Sarek, if Spock agrees to the idea."

"Indeed," Sarek replied tonelessly as he nodded at Nyota before looking at Spock for a reply.

Spock was silent for a moment, "I have had counseling sessions with Commander McCoy concerning my fertility issues and I had expressed the desire to add to our family, but I was hesitant to bring it up to Nyota for fear of creating conflict," he stated tonelessly. "I am not opposed to the idea of adoption."

"It is commendable that you found the courage to seek counseling over the fact that your hybrid lineage has caused you fertility issues, Spock," Sarek replied tonelessly, a hint of relief in his aged voice.

Nyota smiled at Spock, "It is late, my son," Sarek continued, seeing fatigue in Spock's eyes. "We shall gather as a family unit tomorrow with President Pike and proceed with fulfilling your familial desire."

"Ambassador, would you like to stay with us tonight?" Nyota asked in a tired voice. "You are welcome."

Sarek sighed, "I thank you for your courtesy, but I have been assigned quarters," he replied tonelessly.

Spock and Nyota were silent as Sarek left their quarters and then they went to the bedroom that Amanda and Saavik shared. Amanda was sound asleep in her bed and Saavik was also sound asleep. All was peaceful for the moment.

"Len's in getting his scan now and then we'll come back to the ship," Arianne said, smiling at her father as she looked at him on the video screen. "Scotty's waiting for us; the scan shouldn't take very long."

Chris nodded and sighed tiredly as he rested his arms on the chair's handles while his specialized walking sticks sat next to him, "How's Pavel?" Arianne asked in a concerned voice. "Is the sedative still working?"

"So far," Chris replied in a tired voice. "Arianne, I'm glad you're down there with Leonard. He needs…"

Suddenly, there was a whimper and anxious coughing, "It's wearing off," Chris said in a concerned voice as he grabbed his specialized walking sticks. "Arianne, I'm going to have to go. I love you very much."

"I love you, Dad, as does Len," Arianne replied in a concerned voice. "We'll talk more tomorrow."

Chris nodded and slowly got to his feet as the screen went black, "Nyet, please do not hurt heem!" he heard Pavel whimper in an anxious voice as the older man headed to Pavel's room. "He eez a boy."

"…Ze Starfleet vill not go down vithout a fight," Pavel murmured as Chris entered the bedroom.

Chris quickly maneuvered himself to Pavel's bedside and sat down on the edge of the bed, allowing his walking sticks to sit on the side of the bed within reach, "I am tied up," Pavel murmured in a distressed voice, trying to move away from Chris as beads of sweat appeared on his forehead. "How kin I…?"

"Pavel, it's President Pike," Chris said in a gentle, but firm voice. "You need to wake up for me, okay?"

Turning very pale, Pavel whimpered for several more seconds and Chris instinctively pulled himself off the bed with his walking devices, frowning when Pavel suddenly threw up on the bed, "S-Sir?" Pavel asked in a trembling voice, his eyes widening as he saw President Pike. "I zrew up on ze bed, sir…"

"It's just a bed and can be cleaned up, Pavel," Chris replied reassuringly as he pulled back the covers. "I'll call someone to come and clean it up in a minute, but let's get you out of bed. You need clean clothes."

Pavel nodded and slowly got out of bed, taking care not to use his bandaged hand, "Come on," Chris said in a reassuring voice as he carefully helped Pavel walk into the sitting area. "Sit on the couch."

Swallowing hard, Pavel sank on to the couch and lowered his head in shame while Chris returned to the bedroom, grabbed some clean clothes for Pavel out of the dresser, and came back to see that Hikaru had somehow let himself in and was lingering near the couch with a nervous expression on his face.

"I thought I'd come in and check on Pavel before I turned in for the night, sir," Hikaru explained in a worried voice, seeing Chris's confusion and Pavel's shame. "What happened? Why is Pavel awake?"

Chris sighed when Pavel pulled away from Hikaru, "Get someone from maintenance down here to clean up the bed and make sure they know NOT to speak to Pavel," he said in a firm voice. "Who's on duty?"

"Sir, I'll do it myself," Hikaru offered, not wanting people to gossip about Pavel having PTSD problems.

Chris nodded and gazed at Pavel, "Can I help you change your clothes?" he asked in a gentle voice.

Hikaru quickly moved into the bedroom so Pavel would have some privacy and Pavel remained silent as Chris changed his clothes for him, "K-Kin I lie down?" Pavel finally asked when he was in clean clothes.

"Of course," Chris replied calmly, frowning as Pavel didn't move and instead trembled. "What's wrong?"

Pavel frowned, "I do not vant to go back to sleep," he replied nervously. "Khan vill be zere."

Subtly remembering how long it had taken him to recover from the experience with Nero, Chris silently joined Pavel on the couch and put the pillow on his lap, "Lie down," he said calmly. "You'll be safe."

Trembling, Pavel sank downward and was surprised when he felt his hair being stroked, "Whenever Michael is scared and can't sleep, he and I sit like this," Chris explained gently. "It helps him sleep."

There was silence and Chris smiled sadly when he realized that Pavel had fallen asleep, "Lieutenant Sulu, can you bring a blanket out here, please?" Chris asked in a calm, but very firm voice. "Pavel's asleep."

A moment later, Hikaru came out carrying a blanket, "The bed's cleaned and changed, sir," he said in a quiet voice as he covered Chris and Pavel with the blanket. "Do you want me to call for a doctor?"

"Let Pavel sleep for the rest of the night," Chris replied. "Thank you for your assistance, Sulu."

Hikaru nodded, "Do you want me to stay, sir?" he asked in a quiet, but worried voice. "I can help."

"Sulu, go and get some rest," Chris replied firmly. "Pavel's like a son to me; we'll be just fine."

Hoping his friend would end up being okay, Hikaru nodded and silently left Chris alone with Pavel.

The only sound in Marla's quarters was the sound of Joachim sound asleep in bed and it gave Marla great comfort, as her life was now limited to those quarters. During the day, Joachim would be taken to the school room, Mess Hall, and any other place appropriate for children by a Yeoman while Marla was brought all of her meals, given full access to the computer, and ordered to stay confined to quarters.

Although Marla was relieved that nobody seemed to be punishing Joachim for what she had done, she was also very sorrowful and curious about what had happened to Khan. Since she had full access to the unrestricted databases, Marla had managedto use the computer access in her favor in that she had sent out an encoded message that explained her and Joachim's location and it included a plea for rescue.

It was probable, Marla knew, that Joachim would be taken from her once they reached Earth, but she still had time to whatever it took to protect herself and her son, even if it meant finding Khan again.

Please read and review in a detailed manner so that I feel motivated to continue this story!