Captain Kirk had been meeting with Sarek everyday the past week in preparation of their mission. In all that time he had not seen Spock or Saavik at all and wondered where they had gone or if they were still on the vast estate somewhere. Neither Sarek or Amanda offered an explanation and he considered it impolite to ask.
He had also not seen McCoy even though he had made frequent visits to the Academy to call on him. An exasperatedly helpful assistant would explain each time that the doctor was unavailable at the moment and to please call again at a later time.
Unavailable, my ass.
He strongly suspected that all three disappearances were tied together somehow and was getting really annoyed not to be let in on the mystery.
He rang the door chimes, waiting for the scanner to identify him and open the gates. There was no one at the door to greet him, but it opened automatically as he approached. As he passed the sitting room he looked out the window at Amanda’s eclectic garden and was surprised to see Spock and Saavik kneeling amid the plants. Their eyes were closed and they appeared to be meditating. He paused to watch them, still as statues, and didn’t notice Sarek’s approach.
“They will not be able to communicate with you at this time,” Sarek said in answer to his unspoken question. “I did not think either capable of such a deep meditation.”
Kirk glanced at him sharply but had to remind himself that Sarek’s statement was simply a relaying of facts, not an accusation. He looked at his friends again, whose faces were turned upward despite the bright sunlight.
“How long have they been like that?” he asked.
“Since dawn,” Sarek answered simply as he led the familiar way to his office. Kirk’s eyes widened as he realized it was well past one o’clock. As the heavy door closed he turned to the ambassador.
“The Enterprise will be here to pick us up in less than a week,” he reminded him. “When will I be able to talk with Spock and Saavik?”
Sarek regarded him coolly. “I will relay your desire to speak with them,” he said. “They will contact you, or they will not.”
He stared in confusion at the older man. “What does that mean exactly?” he asked.
Sarek looked suddenly uncomfortable with the subject and folded his hands in front of him. “It is not something to be spoken of to outworlders,” he said, then held up a hand as Kirk began to protest.
“However,” he continued, “Spock has claimed you as his friend, which makes you privy to certain relevant information.” He paused and looked down as if suddenly at a loss for words. Finally he continued.
“They are in the joining. It is a time when their thoughts are directed towards one another on a level you may not understand.”
Kirk let the unintended slight pass and addressed the Vulcan.
“Are they aware of others around them?”
“Aware, yes. Concerned, no,” Sarek answered. “Amanda describes the time as the ‘honeymoon’ though that is of course an incorrect analogy.”
Vulcans had honeymoons? Well, well, he thought, that’s what they’ve been up to!
“I don’t require much time,” he said hesitantly, “a few minutes at most...”
“You do not understand,” Sarek said patiently. “It is not a lack of time that is the issue. “
He didn’t seem inclined to expound further and the captain let the subject drop. Sooner or later he would find McCoy and get some answers to this Vulcan mystery.
Doctor McCoy and Amanda watched out the window as Spock and Saavik ended their meditations at last and slowly stood. They didn’t speak, but their hands brushed together briefly before returning to their sides.
“I think it’s ok to go out now,” Amanda told him, looking at him expectantly. “Is it good news?”
He smiled as he reached for the door. “Yes,” he said, “I believe it is.”
Spock and Saavik turned toward him as he approached on the cobbled path. They were dressed in loose tunics and slacks with a sash at the waist. He noticed that they were both still barefoot and he raised a questioning eyebrow at Saavik.
“Well,” he said when he had stopped in front of them.“I have the test results, and maybe some answers.” He looked at Saavik again before adding, “or some questions.”
They sat down on the bench, holding hands again and looking at him expectantly.
“Well,” he began again, looking around to be sure they were alone. “You’re fine, Spock. You’re human hormones are practically negligible, I ’m happy to say, and your Vulcan hormones are just about where they should be at this time of life.” He cleared his throat and addressed Saavik.
“However, your hormones are off the scale—Vulcan and Romulan both—and your pheromones are particularly running high.”
“It should be possible to correct the imbalance,” Spock said.
“It is,” the doctor agreed. “But I’m not going to do it.”
They looked at him in open shock. “Why not?” Saavik asked.
McCoy smiled at her. “Because, young lady,” he drawled, “you’re pregnant!”
Spock stood, still holding tightly to Saavik’s hand. While Vulcans were most fertile during the pon farr, it was not unheard of to conceive at other times.
“Are you certain?” he asked the doctor.
McCoy rolled his eyes. “Of course, Spock,” he said. “I may be an old country doctor, but I know how to run a pregnancy test!”
Spock smiled at Saavik, touching her face as she stood. “Did you know?”
“No, beloved,” she said, her face showing the same surprise..He brushed his lips against her face before turning to McCoy again.
“How does this effect the joining?” he asked.
The doctor stopped smiling. Now comes the hard part.
“Well,” he began, “it’s well on the way to completion for Saavik, if it’s not already.” He looked at her closely again, causing her to avert her eyes.
“But I’m sorry, Spock,” he continued. “You’re in for a rough ride, I’m afraid. Her hormones and pheromones are going to keep fluctuating, and that’s going to keep you right smack dab in the middle of this joining thing.”
Spock raised an eyebrow at the doctor and another at Saavik. Her hand stroked his face but she didn’t meet his gaze. Spock let go of her other hand and sighed deeply.
“That is...unfortunate,” he said.
After a very long pause, McCoy cleared his throat and spoke again. “Well....ummmm...it’s ok if you....I mean if you want...well, it’s not going to hurt the baby or anything...”
Spock glanced at Saavik who had taken a step away from him. “The desire must be mutual,” he said quietly.
Saavik glanced at Spock, not wanting to cause him the distress of a prolonged joining. She had become aware that her own joining was coming to a close, but noticing also his increased yearning, she had been reticent to tell him. If her hormones and pheromones were causing him such distress, perhaps she should remove herself from his presence for a time.
“Doctor,” she said, “did Captain Kirk stay on Vulcan with you or is he here for another purpose?”
“Oh..well,” the doctor stammered, “that’s another subject I’m supposed to talk about. It seems the Enterprise has to go back to Derilia and the captain wants you two along.”
“I will go,” Saavik answered immediately, drawing a sharp look from both Spock and the doctor.
“Why would you do this?” Spock demanded.
To spare you this distress, she whispered in his mind as she stroked the hardened lines of his face.
Spock looked at her a long time, warring with her logic and his own desire. Finally he turned back to the doctor.
“I will go also,” he said, causing surprised looks from both of them.
McCoy rubbed a hand across his face. “I don’t think that’s a good idea, Spock,” he said. “The distraction is going to make it very difficult to function as an officer...”
Spock raised his chin as if insulted. “I will function adequately, at least by human standards,” he insisted haughtily.
McCoy pinned him with a look. “It could initiate a full blown pon farr,” he declared forcibly, drawing a sharp look from Saavik.
“Spock, you must not..” she began.
Spock kept his eyes on McCoy. “Is it not true, Doctor,” he declared, “that the initiation of pon farr is just as likely here on Vulcan without my bondsmate, as with her on the Enterprise?”
“I suppose so,” McCoy hedged, giving Spock a small smile. “And it would be best to be with her if it was bound to happen anyway...”
“Then it is decided,” Spock said, ignoring the shake of Saavik’s head. “When is the Enterprise due to depart?”
“She’ll be here in a couple of days I think,” the doctor answered as he studied the Vulcan closely. “Are you sure about this?”
Spock nodded. “I must inform my parents of our imminent departure,” he said as he turned toward the house.
“Actually,” McCoy began, stopping him, “your father is coming too.”
Spock turned back around. “Indeed?” he said. “Then I assume he has knowledge of the current situation?”
“He does,” McCoy affirmed. “Jim’s been catching him up on the particulars.”
“Indeed?” Spock said again. He vaguely remembered seeing Jim the day of the argument with his father, but had not spoken to him since the wedding. “Jim is here?” he asked.
“Yeah, I think he’s in Sarek’s office now,” McCoy answered.
Spock nodded and after a moment, held out his hand to Saavik. She hesitated only briefly before taking it and they walked together to the house. With a shake of his head, McCoy followed them.
Spock released Saavik’s hand before entering Sarek’s office with the others and now he stood with his hands behind his back, appearing as controlled as ever. But behind him McCoy could see the fine twitching of his hands. If he had to guess, he would say that Saavik’s joining had ended several days ago at least, and Spock was feeling the effects of their unbalanced desires.
Sarek turned from Kirk to scan the faces of the new arrivals, waiting expectantly for someone to speak. When no one did, his eyes settled on his son.
“State your purpose, Spock,” he said.
“Saavik and I intend to accompany you to Derilia,” he said, and inclined his head toward Kirk. “If the captain still requires our services.”
“Indeed?” Sarek said with some surprise, noticing the bare feet of the two Vulcans and the tense set of Spock’s jaw.
“Of course,” the captain said with a smile. I guess McCoy came through with the asking after all.
“And I guess I’m going too,” the doctor spoke up. “Someone needs to keep an eye on all of you.”
Sarek look pointedly at the doctor and raised an eyebrow, causing McCoy to shift uncomfortably on his feet. “I will speak to my son now,” he said, the statement sounding more like a command than not. The others exchanges glances but filed out of the room silently.
When the door had closed, Sarek looked at Spock for a long time.
“Please, sit,” he finally said, indicating a chair near his desk.
“I prefer to stand,” Spock said, his back rigid.
Sarek eyed him again. “As you wish,” he said, moving to stand in front of him. His practiced eyes studied him closely.
“Your joining has completed then?” he asked uncertainly.
Spock’s eyes shifted to a point behind his father. “It is...complicated,” he answered.
“A non-answer is not an answer,” Sarek reprimanded him. “Is it complete or is it not?”
Spock’s jaw tightened noticeably and he gripped his hands behind his back.
“Saavik is no longer in the joining,” he said, giving half an answer rather than none. Sarek regarded him closely.
“And what of you, Spock?” he asked.
Spock was silent for some time. “It is not an issue,” he finally said.
But Sarek’s gaze had grown disapproving. “You dishonor yourself with this evasion,” he scolded. “Answer the question.”
Spock sighed and looked again at his father. “My joining continues for the foreseeable future,” he admitted. “Saavik is with child.”
Both of Sarek’s eyebrows rose and he looked with renewed concern at his son. “And you propose to serve in this condition?” he asked.
“Yes,” Spock answered simply, meeting his father’s gaze.
Sarek held the look for a long time. “You must attend to your desires so as not to jeopardize the mission,” he stated bluntly. “Does Saavik understand this?”
Spock hesitated only a second. “I will speak with her,” he said evenly.
“See that you do,” Sarek said. “This mission could have repercussion throughout the quadrant.”
The gathering in the library was a less tense affair. Saavik had called for Amanda and now stood holding her hands while she tried to find the words to speak. McCoy stood smiling to one side, rocking back and forth on his heels like he had a secret. The captain was beginning to feel left out again, but at least there hadn’t been any yelling from the office.
“Mother,” Saavik began, causing Amanda to cover her mouth with a cry. Amanda looked ready to burst, but she waited for Saavik to say the words.
“Mother,” Saavik began again, “I carry Spock’s child.”
McCoy’s grin widened and Amanda cried again as she embraced Saavik. Kirk just stared, incredulous at the unexpected news.
Amanda was talking and crying all at once as she pulled Saavik into a chair as if she were made of glass. She got her something to drink and sat down in the chair beside her.
“It’s about time!” Amanda declared causing everyone to laugh.
Saavik waved off the attention but didn’t get up. Amanda was beaming at her and had begun to babble again.
“Now we really must find a house for you two...we can start tomorrow...”
“That will have to wait,” Saavik interrupted her. “Spock and I are joining the mission to Derilia with Sarek.”
Amanda’s stopped talking and her gaze settled on Kirk accusingly. “Why?” she asked.
“It’s an important mission,” Kirk spoke up. “We need everyone familiar with the Derilians.”
“But now?” Amanda argued.
“I’ll take care of them,” McCoy assured her. “And I’ll have them back in time to pick out baby clothes!”
Amanda smiled weakly and embraced Saavik again. “Saavik,” she asked, searching her face, “is Spock happy?”
Saavik could feel the mind-touch even then and she smiled.
“Yes, Mother,” she answered, “he is happy.”