Author’s note: Ha! You came to Elegant Extracts tonight thinking that you would be getting a chapter of Full Circle, but as I told June earlier, Spock and Uhura have been dragging around a chain, moaning and groaning, threatening me with a visitation from the Ghost of Christmas yet to come if I don’t hurry up and get on with their tale. Sorry, it’s a relatively short chapter (4-1/2 single spaced pages to be exact), but I hope it helps to move the “lovey-dovey” action forward a bit more.
BTW: I always try to listen to music while I write, to sort of play out a “soundtrack” in my head to go along with the words on the page. This chapter works very well with “That New Car Smell” (Spock’s theme) from the Star Trek 09 soundtrack. I know, I know; and me writing a TOS story. Wrong on so many levels… but I do like that theme a lot. Enjoy!
“I’ll never forget the look on your face,” she laughed. “You looked positively scandalized.”
“The production of Hair looses something in the translation when it is performed by Tellerites whose bodies are already covered in hair.”
Uhura just giggled even more and shook her head. The evening before they had attended a play together and now she and Spock were sitting in the middle of an outdoor café, taking an afternoon break from her perusal of the shops and his dutiful carrying of all her purchases.
She regarded him for a long moment, weighing the advantages and disadvantages of revealing something personal to him about herself. But then, she did tell him that she trusted him.
“Can you keep a secret, Spock? I mean the kind of secret that involves a painful death if you ever reveal it to anyone.”
“Miss Uhura, I am First Officer of the Enterprise. I possess an A1 security rating from Starfleet Command; I am the son of Sarek, who was the son of Skon, and we are a Vulcan family dedicated to the teachings of Surak. I also possess–”
“Ok, ok, I get it; you can keep a secret. But can you keep a secret-secret?”
“Wasn’t that what I just said?”
She rolled her eyes before forging on.
“Back during my Academy days, I was in a production of Hair. It was an off, off, way off Broadway production down in some tacky theater near Fisherman’s Wharf.”
Uhura didn’t miss his slight reaction to her revelation; she saw his eyes actually spark with new interest.
“I take it, then, that you disrobed at the proper juncture.”
She smiled bashfully, lowering her eyes. She could not believe that she was actually admitting such a personal thing and to him, of all people.
“Yes. I was as naked as the day I was born.”
“Fascinating,” he replied, lifting his customary eyebrow. “That would have been something I would have liked to have seen.”
It was her turn to be scandalized. Although her expression was one of pretend outrage, he quickly corrected himself anyway.
“I meant that I would have liked to have seen the performance, Miss Uhura.” He then lifted his cup and sipped his tea, contemplating the complexity and the mystery that was Lieutenant Uhura. “I had no idea that you where a Thespian.”
“A Thespian?” she chuckled. “Hardly! But I do enjoy acting when I get the chance. Everyone thinks I just like to sing, but I like all types of performance. I dance a little, as well.” She took a sip of her coffee and looked at Spock with mischievous eyes. “Ok, Spock, spill. I told you my deepest, darkest, secret and now it’s time for you to tell me yours.”
“I am a Vulcan.”
“A most convenient excuse,” she said, throwing his own words of two days ago back into his face. “This is what friends do, Spock; they tell each other things. It strengthens the bond; although, I am sure that my idea of bonding is very different from yours.”
He folded his arms across his chest.
“I have no, as you say, deepest, darkest, secrets.”
“Oh no, Buster, that is not how the game is played. I show you mine and you show me yours. You have to give me something to hold over your head; something I can use to get back at you for when you do something stupid.”
“Stupid? I say again, I am a Vulcan.”
“I don’t mean “stupid” literally, Spock,” she sighed.
He sat quietly and considered for a moment. He was rather more private than secretive. He truly didn’t have any, as she called them: secret-secrets. She already knew about T’Pring and he didn’t think that the fact that he had a black sheep brother was all that interesting. He did have one thing that gently pricked at him on occasion and he briefly wondered if that would satisfy her notions of sharing secrets.
“I do not have a secret, per se; but I do have one very troubling regret.”
She immediately sensed something different in his tone this time. A hint of the playfulness that was there only a moment ago was gone, replaced with a very serious expression of self-recrimination.
“If it’s something personal, Spock, I would not wish for you to—”
“After reflection, I find that it is something that I would like to share with you, that is, if you are agreeable to hearing something that is tantamount to a confession of a failing on my part.”
She very much doubted if he did have a true failing, and at any other time it would have been an opportunity for jest, however, all thoughts of teasing him at that moment had fled.
“I hope you know that you can always tell me anything, Spock.” She reached across the narrow span of the café table to touch his forearm; an arm that he quickly moved to his lap.
“I regret that I have never told my mother that I hold her in the highest esteem.”
He hoped that she knew what he was trying to convey without having to say the actual words.
“Do you mean love, Spock? Do you mean to say that you have never told your mother that you love her?”
He automatically reached for his tea, only to touch the handle to spin the cup upon the saucer for a second or two, before resting his hand down beside it.
“Yes, that is the very concept that I was hoping to convey, Miss Uhura.”
“Oh Spock,” she said sympathetically, laying her own hand on the top of the table merely inches from his own. “I’m sure she knows that you love her.”
His eyes focused off into the middle distance and he tilted his head to the side in an endearing gesture which Uhura likened to an apprehensive child, unsure of his place in the big, wide, scary world.
He sighed deeply. “I have always thought that it could not be easy for my mother, married to a Vulcan, raising a Vulcan child, surrounded by nothing but Vulcans: an Earth woman living on a planet where love and emotion are in bad taste.”
“But, she loved your father enough to give up her own life, making a sacrifice to be able to share in his.”
“And yet, to never hear any words of comfort from him. Am I correct in assuming that for humans, for one to know of the other’s love, one must first hear the words; at least, that is how I have always supposed it to be.”
“Surely your father knew something of what she required; he must have shown his regard for her in other ways. Saying the words of love is not the only way that human’s sense the feeling. Do not misunderstand, words of love are always nice to hear, but we can also see love reflected in the eyes, in a smile; love can be expressed by a direct action, or simply by the smallest, gentlest, touch.”
Uhura watched as Spock’s eyes now turned to his hand resting upon the table, the same hand that he started to slide forward towards hers ever so slightly.
“Your words leave me much to ponder, Miss Uhura,” he said, his voice deeper and more affected than she had ever heard from him before.
Slowly, her eyes lifted from his hand and found his eyes already there, waiting, willing, and fully open to her own. To Uhura his eyes seemed to be making a simple request. She watched the fleeting emotions play across them for a moment, wondering what it was that he wished of her, until it hit her: he was seeking permission; requesting a simple liberty that she had rarely granted to anyone, a liberty that he would never dare take without her leave to do so.
“It’s Nyota,” she whispered.
“Nyota,” he breathed.
And just as he pushed his fingers gently forward to make the connection that would finally bring their hands together, a loud and obnoxious voice rang out and their quiet moment was entirely and irrevocably lost.
“Vhat do you two be doing here with the long, grave, serious faces? Vell, no verries; Chekov is now here to be saving the day!”