icemink: (Spock)
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Title: Someday, and the Rest of Your Life
Paring: Spock/Uhura
Summary: When the Enterprise receives a distress call from a Vulcan rescue vessel, Spock finds himself confronted by his past, and he must choose whether to uphold Vulcan traditions or find his own way.
Rating: NC-17

Previous chapters can be found here.



“All right, Lieutenant,” McCoy said as he finished passing the medical tricorder over her. “It looks like you’re ready for light duty. No exerting yourself, understood?”

“Yes, Doctor,” Uhura replied.

McCoy could see her practically fidgeting in her seat. He supposed she probably had been going a little crazy the last few days without anything to do. Although why she didn’t just use the time to learn another five languages, or whatever it was she did, he didn’t know.

“Go, easy on the voice too,” he told her. “I know it’s your job, but I don’t want to catch you giving any concerts in the mess hall.”

She smiled. “I promise doctor, besides, I wouldn’t want anyone to hear me sing just now.”

He nodded. “Don’t worry, you’ll be singing arias again in no time. If your voice does start to trouble you though, take one of these.” He handed her a small package of lozenges. “Now, shall we get you back to the bridge?”

She smiled eagerly and hoped off the sick bay bed. He gave her a look, as if she had already begun using too much energy. McCoy knew he was being over protective, but you had to be with bridge officers. If you didn’t tie them down to their beds they’d try to run a marathon on a broken leg. You simply couldn’t trust them to have common sense about their own injuries and take it easy.

They exited sickbay and headed towards the bridge. Once they were in the hallway, and more or less alone, McCoy couldn’t help but ask the questions that had driving him crazy for the last several days. “You and Spock, huh?”

“Doctor!” she protested. “I don’t see how that’s any of your buisness.”

“You didn’t really think that Jim Kirk could keep silent about your little scene on the transport pad, did you?” he asked. “Hey I think it’s a good thing. In my medical opinion if anyone on this ship needs to get laid, it’s Mr. Spock.” He stopped realizing what he’d just said. “That’s not a doctor’s order by the way, remember, light duty.”

Despite her best effort Uhura couldn’t help but snicker. “Don’t worry, Doctor, I’ll be good.” But her face turned serious quickly, and McCoy thought a little sad.

Maybe things weren’t as certain between the two as he had been lead to believe. Spock had come to visit that rather pretty Vulcan woman. But the turbo lift doors opened before he could continue prying.

“Welcome back to the bridge, Lieutenant,” Kirk said smiling.

Before Uhura could answer McCoy interrupted, "She's on light duty only! Is that understood?"

"Understood Doctor." Kirk smiled at McCoy's gruff tone. "But I do hope she can speak for herself, otherwise I'm going to have to find somewhere other than communications to put her."

"I'm fine Captain," Uhura said although her voice was a little horse.

"Then take your seat Lieutenant" he orders her. "We're approaching Starbase 11 now."

"Aye, Sir," Uhura replied.

McCoy hung around the bridge, watching the docking procedure. It would be a while before he was called on to move his more delicate patients. First all the survivors that were in good condition would be transfered to the Starbase.

"Captain," Uhura called out. "I've got an incoming transmission from the Starbase.”

“On screen,” Kirk ordered.

The image of the orbital structure faded, to be replaced by that of Ambassador Sarek.

“Captain Kirk,” was the Ambassador’s only greeting.

“Ambassador Sarek,” Kirk replied. “I believe everything is in order for us to transfer our passengers.”

“Indeed, Captain,” The Ambassador replied. “We are grateful for the Enterprise’s help. I was hoping we could impose on you for one more favor.”

“Of course, Ambassador,” Kirk answered with a smile. “What can we do to help.”

“A small matter really. With your permission myself and Elder T’Pau would like to beam aboard. We have a matter to discuss with Spock, and one of the survivors named T’Pring.”

“T’Pau?” Kirk asked. “The same T’Pau who turned down a seat on the Federation Council?”

Sarek nodded as if surprised that Kirk had heard of her. McCoy couldn’t help but smile. He had been friends with James Kirk for several years now, and he knew that people often dismissed Jim as an ignorant farmboy. The truth was Jim was almost always paying attention, and to more than the hemlines of the ladies.

“Yes, Captain, the same,” Sarek acknowledged.

“The Enterprise wasn’t expecting to receive a dignitary of her stature,” Jim began clumsily, obviously nervous about having a high ranking Vulcan walking about his ship. “If you give us some time to prepare-”

“That will not be necessary, Captain,” Sarek interrupted. “All we requite is a room in which we may meet. As you might imagine, Starbase 11 is considerably crowded at the moment, and will only become more so as we receive your passengers.

“Jim,” McCoy spoke up. “Conference room three isn’t that far from sickbay. T’Pring’s condition is stable, but I’d rather not move her about too much.”

“That will be adequate,” Sarek paused. “With your permission of course.” Ambassador Sarek, McCoy thought, had a way of asking permission that sounded a lot like giving an order.

“Of course Ambassador,” Kirk agreed reluctantly.

Without further ado, Sarek cut off the transmission.

Jim turned to Spock, “I don’t suppose you’d mind telling us why the woman who is quite possibly the highest ranking Vulcan there is, wants to come aboard my ship for a chat?”

“It is a Vulcan matter, Captain,” Spock answered. “I assure you it has nothing to do with the operation of this ship.”

Kirk was obviously not pleased with that answer. “Lieutenant,” he turned to Uhura. “I don’t suppose you’d be able to translate ‘a Vulcan matter’ for the rest of us?”

Looked up from her console, all cool composure. “I could only speculate.”

“So speculate,” McCoy jumped in, intensely curious as to what was going on.

Uhura shifted in her seat, showing the first signs of discomfort. “I speculate that it has nothing to do with operation of this ship,” she parroted Spock.

McCoy was willing to bet anything that she knew exactly what was going on, even if she wasn’t willing to say. He was just grateful that T’Pring’s medical condition was going to give him a good excuse to hang around and find out.

“Well, then,” Jim said, clearly disappointed that he wasn’t going to get anything. “I guess we better go greet T’Pau and the Ambassador, ay Mr. Spock.”

“You’re presence is not required Captain,” Spock told him.

Jim smiled. “A high ranking Vulcan dignitary is about to board my ship. What would Starfleet think if I wasn’t there to greet her, and show her about the Enterprise?”

“I’ll see you in conference room three then, Captain, Mr. Spock,” McCoy said also smiling. Whatever was going on with the Vulcan First Officer, Jim no more wished to miss it than Bones did.

McCoy hurried to sick bay to make sure that his patient was comfortably moved. If he had hoped for some reaction from T’Pring when he told what was going on, and who was coming, he was disappointed when she only nodded and said, “I see.”

But then, that was Vulcans for you. Bones didn’t know when he’d seen a sickbay so full, and so quiet. They didn’t moan, they didn’t complain. They just lay there contemplatively, until McCoy thought he’d go insane from the quiet.

It wasn’t long after he’d guided T’Pring in her chair to the conference room when the door opened and the Kirk escorted in the Vulcan party.

McCoy wasn’t sure what he’d expected from a high Vulcan dignitary. Serious, austere, and emotionless. T’Pau was all of these, but what McCoy hadn’t expected was the sheer presence she brought with her, especially when her eyes fell on him.

“You are a doctor?” she asked without prelude.

“Uh, yes Ma’am,” he answered.

“What is her condition,” she said. She didn’t so much as look at T’Pring, she simply assumed that McCoy would follow her train of thought.

Bones found himself reporting as if the Captain had asked him for the information. “She had some bad internal bleeding, and some compression fractures when she was brought aboard. Those were easy enough to fix. The real trick was her spinal cord. However, after some damn fine surgery, if I do say so myself, we’ve repaired the damage. She’ll continue to need therapy to get back the use of her legs, but eventually she’ll be as good as new.”

“Good,” T’Pau nodded. “Then there is no reason the wedding can not go on as planned,”

“Wedding?” McCoy and Kirk asked almost as one.

“Honored T’Pau,” T’Pring spoke up. “Before we proceed any further, I feel I should inform you of my decision to invoke kal-if-fee.”

“Indeed,” T’Pau said, with no surprise. She glanced at Sarek. “This is not entirely unexpected. And in other times you would be well with in your right. But times have changed. The hr’Breish’te Council has already ruled that such practices are no longer logical.”

“And what of me T’Pau,” Spock spoke for the first time. “Do I have any right of refusal left.”

The elder Vulcan shook her head. “The male’s right of refusal has always hinged upon victory in the kal-if-fee. You are both bond under Vulcan law to complete the bond you began in childhood.”

“Wait,” McCoy couldn’t keep quiet any longer. “Are you saying you’re going to force these two to marry each other?” Annoyingly none of the Vulcan’s seemed to pay him any mind.

“You say we are bound under Vulcan law?” T’Pring asked. T’Pau nodded. “And yet only a Vulcan can be bound under our laws. I contend that Spock is no Vulcan. He is at best V'tosh ka'tur, and I invoke my right of sha’to’gav, of trial, to prove it.”

If possible both Spock and Sarek stood up straighter. Even T’Pau seemed taken aback by whatever the hell it was that T’Pring had just said. For the first time McCoy wished he’d bothered to take some language classes at the Academy so he might have some clue as to what was going on.

It was T’Pau who spoke. “It is true that every Vulcan citizen as the right to sha’to’gav. We can not revoke that right and still consider ourselves a fair and lawful people. But consider what you are doing. You have little chance of winning, and even if you loose, everyone will know that you have accused the son of Sarek of being a V'tosh ka'tur. It is most likely a stigma that you will bear as well as your children. Think before you speak again.”

“All right, stop this now,” Kirk spoke up. McCoy never thought he’d see the day when James T. Kirk was the voice of reason, especially in a room full of Vulcans. On the other hand maybe it took a room full of Vulcans to make him seem reasonable. “If my First Officer is being accused of some sort of crime-”

“It is not a crime, precisely,” Spock interrupted. “To be V’tosh ka’tur, is to be a Vulcan without logic. It does however carry with it the punishment of exile from the Vulcan race.”

“You want to exile Spock because he’s half human?” McCoy spoke up. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing.

“Not because he is half-human,” T’Pring interjected. “But because he has chosen time and again in his life to turn his back on logic. Captain, did you yourself not take command of this vessel from him on the basis that he had been emotionally compromised?”

“Well, yes but-” Kirk started.

“And are you aware that he has pursued a romantic relationship with another of your officers, and that the relationship began while he was her instructor, which is a clear violation of Starfleet’s ethical rules?”

“T’Pring,” Spock interrupted. “If you insist on following this line of reasoning, perhaps you should save your arguments for the trial itself?”

T’Pring simply nodded in agreement.

“Now, hold on. If you think I’m going to let you take my First Officer off this ship for some sort of trial-”

“That would not be logical,” T’Pau interrupted. “It seems that yourself and at least one member of your crew will be vital in providing testimony. And when the crowded conditions on Starbase 11 are taken into account, the Enterprise is the most logical place for the sha’to’gav to occur. If you feel it necessary you may attend the entirety of the trial. Assuming of course that T’Pring insists on going forward?”

“I do,” T’Pring said coldly.

“Then it is done,” T’Pau said formally. And then just for a second her cold official front broke. She turned toward Sarek, who had remained in the background, silent. “I am sorry.” Her gaze returned to Kirk, and she was all Vulcan again. “Captain, if you can find room for us, the trial will commence tomorrow here on the Enterprise. Otherwise, we shall find what space we can on the Starbase.”

“With all due respect-” Kirk began to protest.

“It’s all right Jim,” Spock said softly. “Let it be.”

“Spock!” McCoy tried to interject. He couldn't’ understand why the half-Vulcan was letting himself be railroaded.

“I said let it be, Doctor.” Spock insisted.

“All right,” Kirk said in defeat. “But I do insist on being present.”

T’Pau nodded. And as if everything had already been resolved, she swept out of the room.

Sarek paused only a moment, placed a hand on Spock’s shoulder and spoke in Vulcan, “Ri kup pak-tor nash-veh wuh’ashiv sa-fu.” There was something in voice as he spoke. A slight tremor. McCoy doubted he would have even noticed it if Sarek had been human, but for a Vulcan of Sarek’s discipline it was almost as if the man was sobbing.

Spock said nothing, he only nodded, and then Sarek was gone.

Kirk and Spock were then next to leave, and McCoy suddenly found himself alone with T’Pring. “Find your own way back to sick bay,” he told her.

It wasn’t very doctorly of him, but right now he didn’t feel much like a doctor. Just a man worried for someone who might just be a new friend. He hurried out to catch up to Kirk and Spock who were headed back to the bridge.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ri kup pak-tor nash-veh wuh’ashiv sa-fu. Sarek’s words echoed in Spock’s mind. I cannot lose an other son. The words surprised Spock. Suddenly he saw his father in a whole new light. Had his father’s silence ever since Spock had joined Starfleet been because Sarek felt rejected? Because he thought that Spock, like his older brother Sybok had chosen to reject his Vulcan heritage? It seemed absurd on the surface, too emotional for Sarek, not at all logical. But then Spock had never expected his father to admit to loving his mother either.

“Can they really do this?” Kirk asked. “Declare you not a Vulcan?”

“In theory yes,” Spock assented. “However, Captain, your concern for me is overstated. T’Pring has less than a 2.3% chance of winning.”

“So let me get this straight,” McCoy joined them. “If she wins you get banished, whatever that means these days, and if you win, you have to mary her.” McCoy whistled. “Talk about a Kobayashi Maru.”

“How can you be sure she won’t win, Spock,” Kirk asked. “I mean assuming you don’t want her to?” he looked to McCoy for help, but Bones only shrugged.

“Exile in this case, Doctor,” Spock began, addressing their points in order, as any Vulcan would. “Would mean that I would be allowed no contact with any other Vulcan. And I can be almost sure that T’Pring will not win, Captain, because it is nearly impossible to prove a Vulcan to be without logic.

“Although every Vulcan strives for perfect logic and control of their emotions, it is a state few if any achieve.” Spock continued. “When a Vulcan stumbles from the path, they are not punished. To strive for logic is what is important. I may have made mistakes, I may have let my emotions control my actions at some weaker moments. But I have always returned to the path. The only way I could be declared V’tosh ka’tur is if-”

Spock stopped himself, and closed his eyes. And once again his father’s words took on new meaning. If I chose to abandon logic, he finished silently.

“Is if what?!” McCoy demanded.

“Nothing, Doctor,” Spock said softly. “I only realized that my father’s mind has once again out paced my own.”

“And what exactly was it your father said to you?” Kirk asked.

“It is a personal matter.”

The turbo life doors opened and the three men stepped out onto the bridge.

“Lieutenant,” Kirk barked at Uhura. “What does ‘Hiccup pack tarnish veh wushiv safe you’ mean?”

She blinked at him for a moment before stealing a glance towards Spock as if looking for approval.

“Lieutenant, I asked you a question.” Kirk said stepping between the two of them, but not before Spock’s eyes met Nyota’s. He could see the question in her eyes, and knew she had managed to interpret the Captain’s mangled Vulcan.

“I can’t be a caterpillar?” she said with feigned uncertainty.

Spock briefly wondered where she had gotten the word caterpillar from. But he had more important matters to worry about. And he realized, he owed her an explanation.

“Captain,” he asked. “I know it is unusual. But can I request to speak to Lt. Uhura in private? She will most likely be called on to testify tomorrow and she deserves some explanation.”

“Testify?” Uhura asked, concern on her face.

“Well, I’m glad someone gets an explanation,” Kirk’s tone was softening though. “However, under the circumstances Mr. Spock, I’d say you’re a braver man than I.” He smiled at Uhura. “Go on, she’s on light duty anyway, and we’re already docked, not much for either of you to do.”

“Thank you Captain,” Spock said sincerely. He was glad that at least for now Jim was not going to push the issue.

“You’re welcome Spock. And Spock, if we can help in any way. . . “

“All that is required Captain, is that you speak the truth.” Spock said simply before leading Uhura away from the bridge.



A/N1: I want to thank
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Title: Someday, and the Rest of Your Life
Paring: Spock/Uhura
Summary: When the Enterprise receives a distress call from a Vulcan rescue vessel, Spock finds himself confronted by his past, and he must choose whether to uphold Vulcan traditions or find his own way.
Rating: NC-17

Previous chapters can be found <a href="http://www.livejournal.com/tools/memories.bml?user=icemink&keyword=Someday&filter=all">here.</a>

<cut text = "Chapter 11">

“All right, Lieutenant,” McCoy said as he finished passing the medical tricorder over her. “It looks like you’re ready for <i>light</i> duty. No exerting yourself, understood?”

“Yes, Doctor,” Uhura replied.

McCoy could see her practically fidgeting in her seat. He supposed she probably had been going a little crazy the last few days without anything to do. Although why she didn’t just use the time to learn another five languages, or whatever it was she did, he didn’t know.

“Go, easy on the voice too,” he told her. “I know it’s your job, but I don’t want to catch you giving any concerts in the mess hall.”

She smiled. “I promise doctor, besides, I wouldn’t want anyone to hear me sing just now.”

He nodded. “Don’t worry, you’ll be singing arias again in no time. If your voice does start to trouble you though, take one of these.” He handed her a small package of lozenges. “Now, shall we get you back to the bridge?”

She smiled eagerly and hoped off the sick bay bed. He gave her a look, as if she had already begun using too much energy. McCoy knew he was being over protective, but you had to be with bridge officers. If you didn’t tie them down to their beds they’d try to run a marathon on a broken leg. You simply couldn’t trust them to have common sense about their own injuries and take it easy.

They exited sickbay and headed towards the bridge. Once they were in the hallway, and more or less alone, McCoy couldn’t help but ask the questions that had driving him crazy for the last several days. “You and Spock, huh?”

“Doctor!” she protested. “I don’t see how that’s any of your buisness.”

“You didn’t really think that Jim Kirk could keep silent about your little scene on the transport pad, did you?” he asked. “Hey I think it’s a good thing. In my medical opinion if anyone on this ship needs to get laid, it’s Mr. Spock.” He stopped realizing what he’d just said. “That’s not a doctor’s order by the way, remember, <i>light</i> duty.”

Despite her best effort Uhura couldn’t help but snicker. “Don’t worry, Doctor, I’ll be good.” But her face turned serious quickly, and McCoy thought a little sad.

Maybe things weren’t as certain between the two as he had been lead to believe. Spock had come to visit that rather pretty Vulcan woman. But the turbo lift doors opened before he could continue prying.

“Welcome back to the bridge, Lieutenant,” Kirk said smiling.

Before Uhura could answer McCoy interrupted, "She's on light duty only! Is that understood?"

"Understood Doctor." Kirk smiled at McCoy's gruff tone. "But I do hope she can speak for herself, otherwise I'm going to have to find somewhere other than communications to put her."

"I'm fine Captain," Uhura said although her voice was a little horse.

"Then take your seat Lieutenant" he orders her. "We're approaching Starbase 11 now."

"Aye, Sir," Uhura replied.

McCoy hung around the bridge, watching the docking procedure. It would be a while before he was called on to move his more delicate patients. First all the survivors that were in good condition would be transfered to the Starbase.

"Captain," Uhura called out. "I've got an incoming transmission from the Starbase.”

“On screen,” Kirk ordered.

The image of the orbital structure faded, to be replaced by that of Ambassador Sarek.

“Captain Kirk,” was the Ambassador’s only greeting.

“Ambassador Sarek,” Kirk replied. “I believe everything is in order for us to transfer our passengers.”

“Indeed, Captain,” The Ambassador replied. “We are grateful for the Enterprise’s help. I was hoping we could impose on you for one more favor.”

“Of course, Ambassador,” Kirk answered with a smile. “What can we do to help.”

“A small matter really. With your permission myself and Elder T’Pau would like to beam aboard. We have a matter to discuss with Spock, and one of the survivors named T’Pring.”

“T’Pau?” Kirk asked. “The same T’Pau who turned down a seat on the Federation Council?”

Sarek nodded as if surprised that Kirk had heard of her. McCoy couldn’t help but smile. He had been friends with James Kirk for several years now, and he knew that people often dismissed Jim as an ignorant farmboy. The truth was Jim was almost always paying attention, and to more than the hemlines of the ladies.

“Yes, Captain, the same,” Sarek acknowledged.

“The Enterprise wasn’t expecting to receive a dignitary of her stature,” Jim began clumsily, obviously nervous about having a high ranking Vulcan walking about his ship. “If you give us some time to prepare-”

“That will not be necessary, Captain,” Sarek interrupted. “All we requite is a room in which we may meet. As you might imagine, Starbase 11 is considerably crowded at the moment, and will only become more so as we receive your passengers.

“Jim,” McCoy spoke up. “Conference room three isn’t that far from sickbay. T’Pring’s condition is stable, but I’d rather not move her about too much.”

“That will be adequate,” Sarek paused. “With your permission of course.” Ambassador Sarek, McCoy thought, had a way of asking permission that sounded a lot like giving an order.

“Of course Ambassador,” Kirk agreed reluctantly.

Without further ado, Sarek cut off the transmission.

Jim turned to Spock, “I don’t suppose you’d mind telling us why the woman who is quite possibly the highest ranking Vulcan there is, wants to come aboard my ship for a chat?”

“It is a Vulcan matter, Captain,” Spock answered. “I assure you it has nothing to do with the operation of this ship.”

Kirk was obviously not pleased with that answer. “Lieutenant,” he turned to Uhura. “I don’t suppose you’d be able to translate ‘a Vulcan matter’ for the rest of us?”

Looked up from her console, all cool composure. “I could only speculate.”

“So speculate,” McCoy jumped in, intensely curious as to what was going on.

Uhura shifted in her seat, showing the first signs of discomfort. “I speculate that it has nothing to do with operation of this ship,” she parroted Spock.

McCoy was willing to bet anything that she knew exactly what was going on, even if she wasn’t willing to say. He was just grateful that T’Pring’s medical condition was going to give him a good excuse to hang around and find out.

“Well, then,” Jim said, clearly disappointed that he wasn’t going to get anything. “I guess we better go greet T’Pau and the Ambassador, ay Mr. Spock.”

“You’re presence is not required Captain,” Spock told him.

Jim smiled. “A high ranking Vulcan dignitary is about to board my ship. What would Starfleet think if I wasn’t there to greet her, and show her about the Enterprise?”

“I’ll see you in conference room three then, Captain, Mr. Spock,” McCoy said also smiling. Whatever was going on with the Vulcan First Officer, Jim no more wished to miss it than Bones did.

McCoy hurried to sick bay to make sure that his patient was comfortably moved. If he had hoped for some reaction from T’Pring when he told what was going on, and who was coming, he was disappointed when she only nodded and said, “I see.”

But then, that was Vulcans for you. Bones didn’t know when he’d seen a sickbay so full, and so quiet. They didn’t moan, they didn’t complain. They just lay there contemplatively, until McCoy thought he’d go insane from the quiet.

It wasn’t long after he’d guided T’Pring in her chair to the conference room when the door opened and the Kirk escorted in the Vulcan party.

McCoy wasn’t sure what he’d expected from a high Vulcan dignitary. Serious, austere, and emotionless. T’Pau was all of these, but what McCoy hadn’t expected was the sheer presence she brought with her, especially when her eyes fell on him.

“You are a doctor?” she asked without prelude.

“Uh, yes Ma’am,” he answered.

“What is her condition,” she said. She didn’t so much as look at T’Pring, she simply assumed that McCoy would follow her train of thought.

Bones found himself reporting as if the Captain had asked him for the information. “She had some bad internal bleeding, and some compression fractures when she was brought aboard. Those were easy enough to fix. The real trick was her spinal cord. However, after some damn fine surgery, if I do say so myself, we’ve repaired the damage. She’ll continue to need therapy to get back the use of her legs, but eventually she’ll be as good as new.”

“Good,” T’Pau nodded. “Then there is no reason the wedding can not go on as planned,”

“Wedding?” McCoy and Kirk asked almost as one.

“Honored T’Pau,” T’Pring spoke up. “Before we proceed any further, I feel I should inform you of my decision to invoke kal-if-fee.”

“Indeed,” T’Pau said, with no surprise. She glanced at Sarek. “This is not entirely unexpected. And in other times you would be well with in your right. But times have changed. The hr’Breish’te Council has already ruled that such practices are no longer logical.”

“And what of me T’Pau,” Spock spoke for the first time. “Do I have any right of refusal left.”

The elder Vulcan shook her head. “The male’s right of refusal has always hinged upon victory in the kal-if-fee. You are both bond under Vulcan law to complete the bond you began in childhood.”

“Wait,” McCoy couldn’t keep quiet any longer. “Are you saying you’re going to force these two to marry each other?” Annoyingly none of the Vulcan’s seemed to pay him any mind.

“You say we are bound under Vulcan law?” T’Pring asked. T’Pau nodded. “And yet only a Vulcan can be bound under our laws. I contend that Spock is no Vulcan. He is at best V'tosh ka'tur, and I invoke my right of sha’to’gav, of trial, to prove it.”

If possible both Spock and Sarek stood up straighter. Even T’Pau seemed taken aback by whatever the hell it was that T’Pring had just said. For the first time McCoy wished he’d bothered to take some language classes at the Academy so he might have some clue as to what was going on.

It was T’Pau who spoke. “It is true that every Vulcan citizen as the right to sha’to’gav. We can not revoke that right and still consider ourselves a fair and lawful people. But consider what you are doing. You have little chance of winning, and even if you loose, everyone will know that you have accused the son of Sarek of being a V'tosh ka'tur. It is most likely a stigma that you will bear as well as your children. Think before you speak again.”

“All right, stop this now,” Kirk spoke up. McCoy never thought he’d see the day when James T. Kirk was the voice of reason, especially in a room full of Vulcans. On the other hand maybe it took a room full of Vulcans to make him seem reasonable. “If my First Officer is being accused of some sort of crime-”

“It is not a crime, precisely,” Spock interrupted. “To be V’tosh ka’tur, is to be a Vulcan without logic. It does however carry with it the punishment of exile from the Vulcan race.”

“You want to exile Spock because he’s half human?” McCoy spoke up. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing.

“Not because he is half-human,” T’Pring interjected. “But because he has chosen time and again in his life to turn his back on logic. Captain, did you yourself not take command of this vessel from him on the basis that he had been emotionally compromised?”

“Well, yes but-” Kirk started.

“And are you aware that he has pursued a romantic relationship with another of your officers, and that the relationship began while he was her instructor, which is a clear violation of Starfleet’s ethical rules?”

“T’Pring,” Spock interrupted. “If you insist on following this line of reasoning, perhaps you should save your arguments for the trial itself?”

T’Pring simply nodded in agreement.

“Now, hold on. If you think I’m going to let you take my First Officer off this ship for some sort of trial-”

“That would not be logical,” T’Pau interrupted. “It seems that yourself and at least one member of your crew will be vital in providing testimony. And when the crowded conditions on Starbase 11 are taken into account, the Enterprise is the most logical place for the sha’to’gav to occur. If you feel it necessary you may attend the entirety of the trial. Assuming of course that T’Pring insists on going forward?”

“I do,” T’Pring said coldly.

“Then it is done,” T’Pau said formally. And then just for a second her cold official front broke. She turned toward Sarek, who had remained in the background, silent. “I am sorry.” Her gaze returned to Kirk, and she was all Vulcan again. “Captain, if you can find room for us, the trial will commence tomorrow here on the Enterprise. Otherwise, we shall find what space we can on the Starbase.”

“With all due respect-” Kirk began to protest.

“It’s all right Jim,” Spock said softly. “Let it be.”

“Spock!” McCoy tried to interject. He couldn't’ understand why the half-Vulcan was letting himself be railroaded.

“I said let it be, Doctor.” Spock insisted.

“All right,” Kirk said in defeat. “But I do insist on being present.”

T’Pau nodded. And as if everything had already been resolved, she swept out of the room.

Sarek paused only a moment, placed a hand on Spock’s shoulder and spoke in Vulcan, “Ri kup pak-tor nash-veh wuh’ashiv sa-fu.” There was something in voice as he spoke. A slight tremor. McCoy doubted he would have even noticed it if Sarek had been human, but for a Vulcan of Sarek’s discipline it was almost as if the man was sobbing.

Spock said nothing, he only nodded, and then Sarek was gone.

Kirk and Spock were then next to leave, and McCoy suddenly found himself alone with T’Pring. “Find your own way back to sick bay,” he told her.

It wasn’t very doctorly of him, but right now he didn’t feel much like a doctor. Just a man worried for someone who might just be a new friend. He hurried out to catch up to Kirk and Spock who were headed back to the bridge.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

<i>Ri kup pak-tor nash-veh wuh’ashiv sa-fu.</i> Sarek’s words echoed in Spock’s mind. <i>I cannot lose an other son.</i> The words surprised Spock. Suddenly he saw his father in a whole new light. Had his father’s silence ever since Spock had joined Starfleet been because Sarek felt rejected? Because he thought that Spock, like his older brother Sybok had chosen to reject his Vulcan heritage? It seemed absurd on the surface, too emotional for Sarek, not at all logical. But then Spock had never expected his father to admit to loving his mother either.

“Can they really do this?” Kirk asked. “Declare you not a Vulcan?”

“In theory yes,” Spock assented. “However, Captain, your concern for me is overstated. T’Pring has less than a 2.3% chance of winning.”

“So let me get this straight,” McCoy joined them. “If she wins you get banished, whatever that means these days, and if you win, you have to mary her.” McCoy whistled. “Talk about a Kobayashi Maru.”

“How can you be sure she won’t win, Spock,” Kirk asked. “I mean assuming you don’t want her to?” he looked to McCoy for help, but Bones only shrugged.

“Exile in this case, Doctor,” Spock began, addressing their points in order, as any Vulcan would. “Would mean that I would be allowed no contact with any other Vulcan. And I can be almost sure that T’Pring will not win, Captain, because it is nearly impossible to prove a Vulcan to be without logic.

“Although every Vulcan strives for perfect logic and control of their emotions, it is a state few if any achieve.” Spock continued. “When a Vulcan stumbles from the path, they are not punished. To strive for logic is what is important. I may have made mistakes, I may have let my emotions control my actions at some weaker moments. But I have always returned to the path. The only way I could be declared V’tosh ka’tur is if-”

Spock stopped himself, and closed his eyes. And once again his father’s words took on new meaning. <i>If I chose to abandon logic,</i> he finished silently.

“Is if what?!” McCoy demanded.

“Nothing, Doctor,” Spock said softly. “I only realized that my father’s mind has once again out paced my own.”

“And what exactly was it your father said to you?” Kirk asked.

“It is a personal matter.”

The turbo life doors opened and the three men stepped out onto the bridge.

“Lieutenant,” Kirk barked at Uhura. “What does ‘Hiccup pack tarnish veh wushiv safe you’ mean?”

She blinked at him for a moment before stealing a glance towards Spock as if looking for approval.

“Lieutenant, I asked you a question.” Kirk said stepping between the two of them, but not before Spock’s eyes met Nyota’s. He could see the question in her eyes, and knew she had managed to interpret the Captain’s mangled Vulcan.

“I can’t be a caterpillar?” she said with feigned uncertainty.

Spock briefly wondered where she had gotten the word caterpillar from. But he had more important matters to worry about. And he realized, he owed her an explanation.

“Captain,” he asked. “I know it is unusual. But can I request to speak to Lt. Uhura in private? She will most likely be called on to testify tomorrow and she deserves some explanation.”

“Testify?” Uhura asked, concern on her face.

“Well, I’m glad someone gets an explanation,” Kirk’s tone was softening though. “However, under the circumstances Mr. Spock, I’d say you’re a braver man than I.” He smiled at Uhura. “Go on, she’s on light duty anyway, and we’re already docked, not much for either of you to do.”

“Thank you Captain,” Spock said sincerely. He was glad that at least for now Jim was not going to push the issue.

“You’re welcome Spock. And Spock, if we can help in any way. . . “

“All that is required Captain, is that you speak the truth.” Spock said simply before leading Uhura away from the bridge.



A/N1: I want to thank <ljuser="keladry_lupin"> for suggesting the comparison to the Kobayashi Maru.
A/N2: All the Vulcan references in her are cannon except for one. I made up sha’to’gav and hopefully it was clear from what was going on what it is meant to be, but just in case it wasn't, I'm assuming that all Vulcan's have some sort of right of appeal when they feel that a law is illogical or unfair etc. Basically I'm imaging something half way between suing the governement and a court of appeals.</cut>

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