Disclaimer: Star Trek is the property of Paramount/Viacom. This story is the property of and is copyright (c) 1977 by Gerry Downes. Originally published in Obsc'Zine #1, edited by Lori Chapek-Carleton. Rated PG.

 

A Friend in Need

by Gerry Downes

 

"Bones, you don't mean ..."

 

"'Fraid so, Jim."

 

"But … there's no way we can get him to Vulcan in time."

 

"I know -- I told him.

 

"And?"

 

"I guess you'll just have to do."

 

"Me? But he always says I'm such an inadequate partner ..."

 

"Well, it'd be a lot worse if I did it!"

 

"He'll probably beat me again, you know."

 

"Don't complain to me -- if you'd only practice! once in a while…"

 

"All right, all right -- the things I do for friendship."

 

"Attaboy, Jim. You know way deep down, he appreciates it."

 

"Yeah. Well, this is the last time I get involved in this. He really needs a Vulcan partner. Why can't he use the mail, for ghodsake?"

 

"He says it's not the same thing. Anyway, it's too late for that -- this time he needs you."

 

"All right, already, I'm going."

 

"Jim, if there was anything I could do…"

 

"I know. You're a good friend, Bones. When this is all over, will you have a drink with me?"

 

"You bet. All you want."

 

"Thanks. At least I won't have to go through this again. I swear -- friend or no friend, this is the last marathon chess tournament I'm ever getting into."

 

THE END