Nyota drew away, her lips compressing into a tight line. “What do you mean we aren’t compatible?” she asked tightly.
“I mean what I said. Our minds are not compatible. Bonding would require a healer’s assistance, and the bond would be unstable and easily broken by mental manipulation on either of our parts.”
“Sticks and stones might break our bones, but words would break our bond.” The sing-song tone of her voice stood at odds with the angry lines of her face.
His single word answer infuriated her. “If I were Kirk, you’d claim you didn’t understand my meaning. That Earth nursery rhymes make no sense to you.” Her shoulders drooped. “How is it that Kirk’s mind is more compatible than mine, when I understand you so much better than him?”
He had no answer, probably because he doubted whether she really understood him better than Jim. His doppelganger from the other universe had claimed that Jim’s friendship would define him, and in the year and a half he had known the man, the statement had come true. They had quickly become a command team to envy, and beyond that, close friends.
Spock sometimes wondered what friendship really was. His mother had often claimed his father was her best friend, and Spock had long assumed that marriage required friendship. Upon growing up and meeting more couples, he had quickly realized that the two relationships were entirely separate from each other. Marriage did not require friendship any more than friendship required marriage.
By the time he entered into his relationship with Nyota, he came to the conclusion that his marriage would likely not become a close friendship. He liked Nyota, was attracted to her, and had multiple passions in common with her. He had hypothesized it would be enough to create a solid romantic relationship with her.
He had collected much data during their relationship, and his final conclusion was that his hypothesis was flawed. Marriages could exist without a close friendship, but happy marriages could not.
Nyota’s accusatory glare was just more proof to add to his data set.
“I am sorry,” he said at last.
She sighed, and the anger fled her body in a rush of hot air. “I know.” Collapsing onto the edge of the bed, she hunched forward, protecting her solar plexus. “Where does this leave us?”
“We cannot bond.”
“Does that mean we can’t have a relationship? Is the bond that big of a deal to you?”
He took a seat beside her, but did not touch her. “Is marriage important to you?”
“Of course.” She lifted her face, her gaze focused on something Spock couldn’t see. “When I was little, I dreamed of wearing a long white dress and carrying a huge bouquet of lilies.”
“As a child, I often contemplated the most logical time and place in which to bond with my sworn-one.”
She smiled sadly. “So it’s pretty important.”
He didn’t reply.
Nyota wrapped her arms around her waist. “Then this is it.”
She grabbed her overnight bag from the floor. From it, she took a long coat, which she pulled on over her pajamas. She paused, her back turned to him. “I’d like to ask if we could be friends, but I honestly don’t think I could handle that. So I’ll just say goodnight, Commander Spock.”
“Goodnight, Lieutenant Uhura. I will reassign us to alternate shifts tomorrow,” he offered, unsure if it was the right thing to say.
She nodded vaguely. “That’s probably for the best.” She walked to the door, taking one small step at a time. As soon as it slid open, her pace quickened, and she raced away.
Spock watched the door slide shut. Alone in the dark room, he felt isolated.
He could not bond with his sworn-one. He had raped his friend. And in less than six months, he would become a father.
He changed his clothing and climbed into his bed, where Nyota’s fragrance still lingered. His mind racing, he lay on his back, contemplating how his life could have been altered so much, so quickly.
Previous Chapter - Masterpost - Next Chapter