A/N: Slash alert. Read at your own risk.
Uhura was in sickbay for three days and then she confined herself to her quarters. Kirk returned to sickbay and stayed for two days until McCoy was comfortable that he suffered no adverse effects from the hydrocodone and adrenalin shots.
They were scheduled to leave Madir soon. The crew was enjoying the time off and Kirk appreciated the quiet time on board the ship. Spock took to his quarters and stayed there while he and Uhura were in sickbay. The time alone was beneficial, as it gave Kirk a lot to think about. He knew that Spock and Uhura were contemplating as well. There was much to mull over.
Five days after beaming back on board the Enterprise, Kirk was in his quarters, lying in bed, looking up into the mirror. He touched his triangle tattoo, considering what it meant to be in a serious relationship (he’d never had any like this) and what it took to maintain it. He understood that there were limited guidelines to their triad; most of it they made up as they went along. He thought Pon Farr to be a minor blip on the radar; he had not realized how significant it was until it actually happened. He hoped that it would not provide lasting damage to their relationship. With Uhura and with Spock, he knew a love, a peace, a contentment that he had never experienced before. With them, he was connected to something real and tangible other than Starfleet and the Enterprise. He understood that there would always be bumps in the road for them, if they remained with one another. There would be bumps even if they didn’t. Best to stay with each other and weather them together.
They would, if he had any control over the situation. Kirk did not want to go back to the life he had before; to the emptiness of multiple one-night stands, the meaningless fights he always managed to get into, the loneliness of command. The Enterprise had been his one saving grace until he won Uhura’s heart, and then come to learn that there was enough room in his own for Spock. No, he did not want anything to ruin their love affair. His life was complete on all sides, balanced in every direction. He would not lose that. He would fight for it if he had to.
Kirk opened his eyes to see Spock in the doorway of his bedroom. He had not seen him or Uhura since they came back to the ship. “Spock?”
“I thought you wanted to be alone.”
“And I was for five days, ten hours and seventeen minutes. However, I am now finding it difficult to stay away from here.”
Kirk sat up and smiled. “I missed you too, doofus.”
Spock made his way in. “I stopped by to check on Nyota. She is healing. However, she still requires solitude.”
“Hey, if you knew what you put her through, you’d understand.” Kirk knew that she would come back when she was ready.
“I am horribly sorry for what I did to her, Jim. I—”
“Spock, she knows. It’s all right. I know. We don’t hold it against you, but we must accept its consequences. It wasn’t an easy thing for me to see, so I know it wasn’t easy for her to experience. But she loves you. So do I. It will work itself out and next thing you know, we’ll be back to normal.” Kirk moved over so that Spock could sit on the bed. “Unless, of course, you are here to tell me that you no longer wish that we remain a triad.”
“Under no circumstances would I come to tell you such, Jim. I do not wish our relationship to end. I am perfectly content with Nyota and with you.”
Kirk sighed. “Good. That makes me and you.”
“Are you concerned that she will not feel the same way?”
“No, not really. It’s just hard to tell right now. I mean, she sends me a message every morning to let me know that she’s fine, but I understand that she needs time to get over what happened in Madir. It was pretty violent.”
Spock circled the tip of his finger around Kirk’s left eye and then across his throat. The bruises were fading. “I am sorry that I was so rough with you.”
“Hey man, you threw me out of a window. Rough isn’t the term I’d use.”
Spock closed his eyes. McCoy saw fit to mention that to him when he checked him out. “Jim, I cannot—”
Kirk put his fingers over Spock’s mouth. “Shh,” he said. “It’s over. It’s done. I’m all right. No worse for wear.”
“I regret that I caused us so much difficulty.”
“Do you think so? I don’t. We don’t argue, we don’t fight, we work well together and we love hard. I don’t think we have any problems, Spock. Other than Nyota taking the time to heal, I think we’re fine. We didn’t go into it blind, Spock. We were as prepared as we could be. We took care of each other and of you as best we could; that’s what you do when you love someone. You haven’t caused any problems whatsoever. If anything, this is testing our commitment.”
Spock took his hand and stroked his fingers. “I am prepared to do whatever I must to ensure that our connection is not broken.”
“It’s not,” Kirk said. “Nyota isn’t going anywhere and neither am I. This thing will only make us stronger. I believe that. You should, too. I mean, we need to be tight if we’re going to last, right?”
“By tight, I infer that you mean secure.”
Kirk smiled. “Yeah. We have to be if this relationship is going to succeed. We haven’t tackled anything yet. You think Pon Farr was bad? ” He chuckled. “That’s nothing. Wait until you meet my mother and stepfather. Wait until we meet Nyota’s parents. My understanding of her family is that her mother is going to throw a bitch fit when she finds out who her daughter is sleeping with. I’m not even sure if her parents approve of her dating outside of her race, much less her species. Can you imagine the shitstorm we’re going to cause when we show up on their doorstep? Me with my blue eyes and you with your pointy ears? Mrs. Uhura’s going to have a heart attack.”
Spock raised an eyebrow. “Interesting. That is something I have never considered, Jim.”
“You may want to start, Spock. I’ve got a feeling that when this mission is over; we’re going to take a trip to Kenya.” Kirk laughed. He couldn’t help it. “And heaven forbid if Nyota’s pregnant when we do meet her folks. Which makes me wonder, Spock…what do you think about us starting a family?”
“Right now? It would be most inconvenient.”
“Of course it would be, you doofus. I mean, in a couple of years. Nyota makes me want to have kids.”
Spock held on to Kirk’s hand. “I do not know. I am not sure if a starship is the best place to rear offspring, Jim. Not to mention the dangers of command. I would not wish Nyota to raise a child alone should we perish during a mission.”
Kirk shrugged, running his fingers up Spock’s arm. “Maybe you’ll feel differently in a year or two. If we’re okay with it, I’m sure that we can convince Nyota to have a baby. A handsome little blue-eyed boy.”
Spock raised his eyebrow. “As Vulcan sperm are four times as motile as human sperm, it would be more likely that she would bear a Vulcan child. So, shouldn’t we be in agreement as to whose baby she should have?”
Kirk was rubbing the inside of Spock’s elbow, which he knew was a sweet spot. “Does it matter?”
Spock closed his eyes, covering Kirk’s fingers with his. “Apparently, it does not. What would the crew think?”
“Don’t know. Don’t care, to be honest with you. By then, what difference would it make? They know that we’re together; they all can’t be dumb or ignorant enough to think that our relationship won’t make a logical progression.” Kirk actually hadn’t thought about it; this was a random, off-the-cuff conversation. But now that he brought it up, he was curious. Could they actually have a family, be a family?
Spock was breathing slowly. “I think that…in time…we should have…this discussion…with Nyota. But…not now…”
Kirk nodded. “Agree with you there.”
Spock lay on his back and Kirk lay above him, pressing their foreheads together. Spock gave him an Eskimo kiss and Kirk sighed.
“You know,” he said, pressing a kiss to Spock’s cheek, “there was a moment back in Madir that really turned me on. Had circumstances been different, I think it would have been explosive.”
Spock lay with his eyes closed as Kirk kissed his cheek, then his chin. His hands were on the back of Kirk’s head. “I do not remember anything,” he murmured.
Kirk kissed his lips. “I pulled you off Nyota and you came at me, hard and furious. You tackled me.”
“I did?” He raised an eyebrow.
“Yes…and were it not for the situation at hand…you could have had me right then and there.” Kirk kissed his chin again and dragged his lips down the curve of Spock’s throat and pressed them against the hollow. Spock hissed.
“I regret that I do not remember.”
“That’s okay,” Kirk said, running his tongue down the center of Spock’s chest. “I’ll make sure that it happens again.”
“You are wonderfully naughty, Jim.” Spock hissed again as Kirk tongued one of his pecs.
“So I’ve been told.” He came back up to kiss him again, and moved back and forth to rub his erection against Spock’s. Spock held his head and met his kiss, giving him his trademark tongue. Kirk groaned against his mouth and slid a hand down between them to caress Spock. They had not had sex since before Madir, and Jim’s injured leg restricted it. No barriers this evening.
He rubbed his cock against Spock’s, closing his eyes and enjoying the feel of him in his hand as well as against him. Spock groaned and Kirk moved down to kiss his navel while he stroked him.
“Wonderfully…naughty,” Spock repeated in a hoarse whisper.
Kirk tongued his navel, closing his eyes and inhaling Spock’s scent. He loved Nyota for encouraging him to wear patchouli; it was erotic and perfect with the Vulcan’s body chemistry. A bead of liquid escaped the head of Spock’s penis. Kirk ran his finger over it, massaging it into the tip. Then he licked his finger. Sweet, like pear nectar. He pushed his face into his hard stomach and sighed, running his thumb over Spock’s hip, over the tattoo. He continued to stroke him, moaning against the skin of his belly. Spock’s hands were in his hair and he twitched his hips, telling Kirk what he wanted.
Kirk sucked a finger and ran it over his perineum, between his testicles and up the underside of Spock’s erection. Spock exhaled and twitched again. Another dribble of semen flowed out of his tip and over Kirk’s fingers. Kirk groaned and took him into his mouth. He sucked slowly, removing Spock’s hands from his hair, as Spock tended to lose it whenever he gave him head.
“Grab the sheets,” he said. Spock obeyed. He could do nothing but, anyway. Kirk was mesmerizing when he was like this and Spock couldn’t resist him. He caressed his testicles and sucked him slow, making him shiver every time he came up and pressed his tongue against the underside. Spock gripped the sheets, his knuckles white and groaned, unable to hold back.
“Don’t,” Kirk encouraged. “Don’t hold back, Spock. Come for me. Come for me. Do it now.”
When he did, Spock let go with a growl that made the hair on the back of Kirk’s neck stand up. He exhaled through his teeth, his legs trembling as he was spent. Kirk tenderly licked him and kissed him until he was done.
Spock’s eyes were closed. Kirk made him come in a way that Uhura didn’t; not better or harder, just different. He loved both ways; the hardness of him, the softness of her…it was a perfectly logical balance. One he could no longer do without.
Kirk waited for his breathing to become even and then flipped him over. Spock, sated, gasped into the pillow. “Jim!” he said.
“I told you,” Kirk said, “that moment in Madir really turned me on. I wanted you right then. I intend to have you. Right now.”
Spock groaned again as Kirk moved over him and kissed the back of his neck and shoulders. He rubbed his erection between his buttocks and spit into his hand. He slicked his cock with saliva and held himself as he pushed his way inside. It started out slow and easy, but Spock’s panting and his own racing heart turned it fast and heavy. It was so tight, so hot, and so fantastically good that Kirk might have lasted a minute. Two, if he wanted to flatter himself. He let go with a yelp and they both fell on the bed, giving in to it. Spock buried his face in the pillow, muffling his moans and came all over the sheets. Kirk lay on top of him, his face between Spock’s shoulder blades.
“Explosive…” he murmured.
He lay in Spock’s arms, his head on his chest. Spock stroked his hair. Kirk stared at the chair in his room. One of his T-shirts was thrown across it, one that she normally wore. He missed her. The bed felt empty without her.
“You do not sleep, Jim.”
“I was thinking about Nyota.”
“Fascinating. As was I.”
“I miss her. She should be here with us. We haven’t slept without each other since our secret came out.”
“I am aware of that, Jim. But as you said, she will return to us soon enough. However, I doubt if she’ll want to make love.”
“Well, she said not for at least a month. The cookie jar’s closed. But it’s more than the sex I miss. It’s her. Her fragrance, her presence, her aura, and her way of making us turn into little boys.”
“Little boys, Jim?”
“Doesn’t she make you feel like a kid when she does those amazing things that only she can?”
“Point taken.” Spock sighed as pleasant memories filled his mind.
Kirk sighed, his eyelids drooping. “I got orders from Pike today. Soon as the crew’s back on board, we’re to head out to Polaris.”
“The crew has two more days of shore leave, Captain. I take it there’s no hurry?”
“I’m not about to rush them, Spock. They endured a seven-month long star-mapping mission because of me.”
Spock paused for a moment. “We have been together for eleven months, two weeks and three days.”
“It’s been that long? A year?” Kirk found it hard to believe that Kalamar was almost a year ago. For him, the fond memories of those twelve weeks with Uhura and Spock on the beach were more recent than that.
“Affirmative, Captain. The passage of time can dull the senses, and we have been so very at ease since bonding in Kalamar.”
Kirk yawned. “We should retire there when our careers in Starfleet are over. Hell, we should start a family there.”
“It holds meaning for me as well. As it does with Nyota.” Spock chose not to comment on the last part of Kirk’s statement. He seemed almost eager to want to start a family. Spock had to wonder why.
“If you told me a year ago that I’d be here like this with you…if you told me two and a half years ago that we’d be together like this…how I would have laughed in your face.” Two and a half years ago, they were enemies. Eighteen months ago, they were sworn rivals for Uhura’s affections. A year ago, they were standing on a sun-drenched beach in Kalamar, holding hands and planning a life with her.
“The prospect would have been amusing, Jim. However, the fact remains that we are like this, willingly and contentedly, I might add.”
“There’s no arguing with the facts.” Kirk yawned. “I’m so sleepy.”
“Then go to sleep, Jim. You still have healing to do, and humans tend to heal when they sleep.”
Kirk absently grazed Spock’s hip with a finger. “You go to sleep too.”
“I have no need of sleep at this time.”
“Then don’t have me wake up alone, all right?”
“I would not dream of it, Jim.”
In minutes, Kirk was asleep. Spock rubbed his hair, considering their conversation and recent events. They were on the same wavelength, thinking about the same thing at the same time. Uhura. How she completed them and how they missed her. While it was good between him and Kirk, it was so much better with her. A triangle could not sustain itself without all three sides, and neither of them wanted to try without her.
Spock hoped that she would be back where she belonged in a few days.
* * *
Uhura was in her sitting room, chatting with Dez. It was their taffy talk time, Thursday evenings after their shifts were over. The Enterprise was on her way to Polaris. It had been two weeks since the starship left Capella VII. The crew, rested, returned to their duty. Uhura was physically healed, but was still opting to stay in her quarters once her shifts were over. She and Spock and Kirk took meals together in the officers’ dining room and conversation was easy, but she had not told them when she was planning to return. To their credit, they didn’t push her.
Dez tore the wrapper off a piece of taffy and poked it in her mouth. “I meant to tell you, Nyota…I met a friend of yours in Madir.”
“Really? Who?” Uhura sucked on a piece of watermelon taffy.
“Honestly, we did more than just meet. We had a torrid, two-week fling. It was incredible.”
“Who was it, Dez?”
Dez smiled. “She told me that her name was Irish.”
Uhura looked at her, her mouth wide open. “Irish? You had a fling with Irish?”
“So you do know her? I thought she was kidding.”
“She’s my best friend! What was she doing on Capella? And why didn’t she contact—”
“Really? She was there because the U.S.S. Hood had her on assignment, studying Madir’s culture.”
Uhura couldn’t help but smile. “The Hood may have lost its cultural anthropologist. Irish would be right at home in Madir. She’s a hedonist in every sense of the word.”
Dez grinned. “Isn’t that the truth?”
“I can’t believe you had an affair with her, Dez!”
“We met in a bar. Honestly, I wasn’t looking for anything; I haven’t wanted to be in a relationship since…well, you know. And she’s sitting at the counter, so beautiful I couldn’t help myself. Naturally, I had to go over to her. When she found out where I was stationed, she immediately asked about you and I think tried to send you a message, but you didn’t respond.”
Dez gave her a brief nod. “She told me to tell you that she’d get in touch with you when she could.”
“I never knew Irish was interested in women. But it fits. She’s such a…well, let’s just say she does not deny herself the satisfaction of sex.”
“She told me that I was her first. Wouldn’t have known, if she hadn’t told me.”
Uhura laughed. “My best friend believes in letting her freak flag fly. In fact, she’s one of the reasons I got involved with Jim and Spock.”
“Is that right?”
“She and my other best friend, Gaila. They encouraged me to…well, do the things I did that caught their attention.” She sighed.
“Are you guys okay?”
Uhura looked at her. “I forget how perceptive you are, Dez. Or how transparent I am around you.”
“Please don’t tell me you broke up.”
“Oh no, we didn’t. We’re just taking some time off.”
“Why, if you don’t mind me asking? I mean, your relationship is amazing. And inspiring. I have it on authority that at least two dozen trios have hooked up because of it. Koko and Tina are as good as a news reel.”
“Something happened—I’d rather not tell you what—and I had to take some time away to get my head right.”
“Nothing wrong with that. Time off is good; gives you a chance to get a fresh perspective. You are going back, aren’t you?”
Dez eyed her. “Are you, Nyota? Don’t tell me that you’re considering giving up on them!”
“No, I just…I had to do something, Dez. I had no choice. I prepared as best as I could, but it wasn’t enough. I had to give my body—”
Dez nodded. “It wasn’t rape, right?”
Uhura looked at her. “No way. No. It was unpleasant, but I consented. I’m just having a hard time finding my way back as a result.”
“Nyota, you remember what happened last year. What happened to me, what almost happened to you?”
“You know how bad off I was.”
“I never thought I’d be able to even feel anything for another person. I thought the old girl was dead; taken from me by those savage rapists. I thought I’d never be whole again, to have my womanhood returned to me. I tried not to focus on it, just on the whole of regaining my life, which I have you to thank for. But I didn’t stay away from anyone. I learned to laugh again and to live again. And then it was there. I didn’t realize how much until I met Irish. You should have seen me strutting around my quarters after I left her in Madir.”
Uhura smiled at the Bajoran, picturing it.
“What I’m trying to tell you is to move forward and what you think is lost will come back to you. It’s not sex that keeps you with them and them with you. You guys wouldn’t have made it this far if that were the case.”
“That’s right,” she said.
Dez reached out and put a hand on her knee. “Nyota, don’t stay locked up in your room because you feel like you lost something and you’re waiting for it to come back to you before you go back to them. It might be misplaced, but it isn’t gone. I know how much you love those men, and how much they love you. Think about what you’ve already endured. You told me that they were worth everything, even the bad press. Has that changed?”
“You think that because you’re not ready to have sex again that’s enough reason to stay away from them?”
“No, Dez. It’s just that…”
She raised an eyebrow. “That…what?”
“I have a hard time not seeing what happened to me.”
“Oh yes,” she said. “You didn’t have the luxury of forgetting something you willfully went into.”
“Yeah. That’s it. It was hard.”
“Do you remember how you put your job on the line? How each of you was willing to sacrifice your careers for each other? How the captain was reprimanded for violating the PD and excessive use of force? What the commander did when he saw you getting attacked? What about Altair-IV? Each one of those things could have resulted in the severance of your relationship. Don’t let something like this do what those things couldn’t do. Every relationship has its ugly parts. They just make the pretty ones even more so. You just have to hope that there are more pretty parts than ugly ones.”
Uhura nodded, remembering the joy, the contentment, the risk she took to love Kirk and Spock. A tear rolled down her cheek. “There are more pretty parts, Dez.”
“Remember when I said that there will always be trigger-happy people taking shots at you for living your life? The same holds true for life itself. You mean to tell me that you haven’t developed a thick skin?”
Uhura wiped her eye. “I thought I had. I mean, I was able to ignore most of the insults I got from those crew members who don’t like the fact that I’m carrying on with the boss and the second in command.”
“You’re going to have to get tougher than that, Nyota. I mean, you want your relationship to last, right?”
“This means that at some point, you’re going to have to take them home to meet your family.”
Uhura’s eyes widened. She hadn’t even thought about that. “I didn’t even think—”
“I’m quite certain that a triad isn’t what your parents had in mind when they expected you to fall in love. So, you’re going to have to get tough if you want to get to that point. We’ve already decided that leaving them isn’t an option.”
“No,” she said. “It’s not.”
Dez smiled and ate another piece of taffy. “Then put on your armor, Nyota. Don’t let what happened keep you away from your love when there are so many other things that can and will try to do so. You need a bulletproof soul.”
Uhura nodded and took Dez’s hand. “That’s the second time you’ve said that to me.”
“I know,” she said. “Don’t make me have to tell you a third time.”
Uhura laughed and reached for another piece of taffy. “Thank you for being the voice of reason, Dez.”
“It’s the least I could do, Nyota. You came back to Kalamar for me and that saved me. What are friends for?”