DISCLAIMER: The Star Trek characters are the property of Paramount Studios, Inc. The story contents are the creation and property of Deltagirl7 and is copyright (c) 2001 by Deltagirl7. Rated PG.

High on a Mountainside


The crew of the Enterprise had been rotating down to the planet's surface for six days. The crew was in desperate need of shore leave and everyone had enjoyed the natural terrain. Here was a class M planet, uninhabited and unclaimed in the farthest sector of the Alpha Quadrant. This one was simply waiting to be explored. Most of the crew played while the planet was surveyed. Then the survey crews took their rotations.

Christine had been on every survey crew and was just finishing her final reports when Dr. McCoy strolled in. "Well, are you just about ready for a break young lady? It's beautiful down there. Kinda reminds me of home."

"I was hoping to finish this much sooner but I found some cromidium and trisidium in the samples. I wanted to test the purity of them, but then I found traces of dilithium and vidoxoxide in samples from another area. I just couldn't tear myself away."

"You've had quite a successful day, girl. But it's quittin' time. We're out of here in a few hours and you haven't had any time off. Don't you want to get some real fresh air and sunshine?"

Christine briefly wondered what her friends had been doing. So many of them never went on away teams and usually missed all the excitement the Captain, Spock and McCoy usually got into. When she reached her quarters she quickly changed out of her uniform and into a pair of hiking shorts and a shirt. She pulled on a pair of thick socks and hiking boots and stuffed a few things into a pack: a blanket, towel, water, bottle of wine and some food for later.

The sun was still high when she arrived but she knew in only a few hours it would be dark and the planet's twin moons would be rising. There would only be a few hours to relax before the Enterprise left orbit and she planned to enjoy every minute of it.

She explored the alpine forest awhile before discovering a waterfall. Delightful! She noticed steam rising from the pool below. There was a sweet smell in the air that reminded her of freesias. A warm waterfall and a hot spring -- incredible on a mountain but quite heavenly! She pulled out a tricorder and scanned the pond. Clean water, no snakes or insects, shallow depth, rocks for sitting or sun bathing and a perfect view of the sunset and moon rise. "This looks like the perfect place," she said out loud.

Christine looked around. She was completely alone. She quickly kicked off the heavy boots and peeled off the hiking clothes. She spread the blanket and tossed everything onto it. What would her friends think if they knew she was standing nude on a mountain in the afternoon sun in front of God and everyone? She imagined Leonard's shocked statement.

She grabbed the towel and dropped it on a large rock on her way across boulders to a flat place under the waterfall. She tested the water before stepping under it. How luxurious it felt splashing over her shoulders . She moved to feel the water on her neck and back. The steam made her flush and stray hairs around her face began to curl into ringlets. She pulled the clips from her hair and tossed them casually to the blanket. They scattered around the pack.

The warm water flowed in an endless stream over her body. It was soothing and stimulating at the same time. She let it flow over her, arching to feel the pulsing on her lower back. It stung her buttocks a bit as it flowed over and between her legs. It was sensual and for a moment she wished there was someone sharing it with her. It had been such a long time.

Somewhere in another sector Spock beamed down to what looked like a wasteland. It reminded him a lot of Vulcan. He planned to gather some herbs and other plants for tea and meditations. He had come to appreciate the fresh sage and cedar of Earth. His tricorder whirred as he explored his surroundings. It wasn't long before he noticed the distinct smell in the air. He followed the aroma over the desert terrain until he came to a plateau. It seemed to stretch for miles ahead of him. Native sage filled the plateau with its blue gray leaves and pungent smell. A gentle wind stirred the flat land and clouds of fragrance traveled in currents to where he stood. He'd soon gathered a pack full of the stuff and had sent it back to the Enterprise.

"Spock to transporter room. One pack to beam up. There is a cedar forest nearby. I have pre-programmed the coordinates beam me there now, please. Spock out."

As Spock materialized he found Ensign Chekov strolling through the forest. "Ensign, I believe I overheard you tell Mr. Sulu you had a date today. Did your companion fail to keep her appointment?"

"No, sir, Mr. Spock. Antoinette had an earlier rotation, sir. She has returned to the ship. I haf only a little time left myself."

"Well, if you have nothing to do, you may assist me in locating a cypress grove. It is nearby."

Spock saw her first. They trudged out of the dense forest into the clearing where she'd left her pack and blanket. Spock saw the blanket and looked across the clearing at the magnificent steaming falls. Beneath the falls completely out of uniform stood Doctor Christine Chapel, totally naked.

Under the waterfall she had not heard the voices getting closer. She turned and glanced up just as Spock and Chekov came into the clearing. She froze at seeing them and felt her entire body flush in embarrassment. Her eyes met Spock's and they stood motionless for a moment. She noticed his brow rise. Lovely, he thought. Spock pulled Chekov around quickly and back through the forest. They had gone quite a distance before they finally stopped.

"I haf just seen Christine Chapel totally naked! Stark naked. Who would haf thought under dat Starfleet uniform she vud be such a knockout!" exclaimed Chekov.

Who indeed? "I suggest you keep what you saw to yourself Mr. Chekov," said Spock.

Chekov didn't want to but he said it anyway "Yes, Mr. Spock. No vun vill hear it from me, sir," he lied.

There was nothing for Spock to do but go back to the ship. What was he going to say to her? Doctor Chapel, I apologize for -- sorry I saw -- you naked? He had intruded on her privacy. He had seen her naked! He attempted to put it out of his mind but the image of her under the steamy current continued to return. Again and again, throughout his duty shift his thoughts continued to betray him.

Christine chuckled. Embarrassed or not that look on Spock's face was priceless. But that Chekov, he's probably blabbed it to everyone by now.

She stepped out of the falls and decided to have supper soaking in the hot spring as the sun set. It was truly a magnificent site. The red sun began to dip into the desert below. From this spot on the mountain she could see the entire horizon. Red, pink, orange fingers spiraled the sky like eddies of a whirlpool. She opened the wine and drank from the bottle. Why not? It was only she, though it did seem a little decadent somehow. Not much decadence in this Starfleet doctor's life these days. She enjoyed her supper of peppercorn feta and cracked wheat crackers. She scooped up hunks of the cheese and washed them down with the wine. Mm mm this wine must get better with a little age on it. She'd bought a case of the stuff on Zerton 3. When she opened the first bottle in the case, it tasted completely different from the wine she'd sampled when she bought it. She knew she'd been taken but kept the wine anyway, just in case she got desperate. But this bottle -- well, age has improved it.

The sky darkened quickly and the twin moons began to rise. It was beautiful. "Gosh, there's only one thing that would make the night absolutely perfect," she thought. "Don't start!" she admonished herself. She was beginning to feel a little light headed and closed her eyes just for a moment.

* * *

Bleep. "Enterprise to Christine Chapel."

She jumped. She must have dozed off. The moons were still in the same spot. It was only for a moment. Must have had more of that wine than she thought.

Bleep. "Enterprise to Doctor Chapel. Are you there Doctor?"

She fumbled for her communicator. "Yes -- uh, Chapel here." Her image appeared on the screen. Sulu's mouth fell open. There was Christine Chapel, lounging in water up to her neck, looking very beautiful and seductive, eyes softened and hair curly from the humidity.

"Doctor--?" Captain Kirk had never seen Miss Chapel so -- relaxed. He'd never noticed how attractive she was before -- somehow.

"Hellooo, Captain. What a lovely place! There's just one thing missing -- oh, well, what is it Captain?" Her voice sounded deeper than usual, a bit sleepy.

"Doctor, you're late. Everyone's on board except you."

"Oh, Jim, I'm having such a lovely time. I'm staying in this hot spring until -- I don't know -- until I'm good and ready to get out!"

Spock's brow shot up. She'd called the Captain, "Jim". Even he, the Captain's closest friend, did not call him, "Jim". He eyed the bottle of wine she held. "Doctor," he said, "How much of that wine have you had?" He had never seen her drunk but humans were so unpredictable.

"Why, Spock, it's almost full, see?" She held up the bottle. Indeed it was nearly full.

Chekov and Sulu shot amused glances at each other. Chekov eyes said I told you. Spock glared at them.

"Captain," said Spock, "I am preparing to beam her up now."

"Oh, Spock," she giggled. She giggled! The Doctor does not giggle!* "I wouldn't do that if I were you," she turned her back to the sensor. "You see," she inched up out of the water revealing her naked backside and glanced wickedly over her shoulder, "that would be very embarrassing!" She waited for the Vulcan's reaction. He didn't disappoint her -- up shot his brow again.

An amused Kirk interrupted, "Uh, Spock, scan that hot spring."

"Captain, minute levels of some type of natural opiate-like compound in the water. It seems to be produced by the algae growing in the hot spring. The tricorder wouldn't have flagged such a minute quantity, however, absorbed by the human body over several hours -- it could become quite potent."

"I shall retrieve the Doctor," he said, "And Miss Uhura, cut the com signal -- she will have enough to regret later." Sulu and Chekov burst into laughter. Captain Kirk gave them a warning glance but couldn't restrain his own amusement. McCoy would give a month's credits to see this!

Moments later Spock beamed down to the surface.

"Spock!" Her voice was unusually resonant. "Captain Kirk is good!" she exclaimed.

"Doctor, please come out of the pool."

"Oh no, Commander! I'm staying right here and you can't make me come out." She gave him a seductive look. "Take off your clothes and get in with me."

Definitely mellow. "I can not do that, Doctor. The water is laced with opiates. I can not come in after you. You must leave the pool -- now."

"What?" She did feel a little dizzy. "Are you saying I'm -- drugged? Ah, so this is what it feels like. Not too bad. I do feel pretty good -- um, relaxed."

"Yes, well, Christine, please come out," he pleaded. "Take my hand, I will steady you." He held his hand out to her.

God, his eyes are sooo beautiful! "All right" she agreed.

"Here is a blanket. Please wrap it around yourself."

"Turn around," she said. He averted his eyes and busied himself packing her things. Her voice was deeper than he'd ever heard it. That had a certain appeal to him. He had never thought of her in that way before. He directed himself to think of his list of duties for the evening -- anything but the naked woman splashing behind him. She climbed out of the pool and stumbled. He started to turn to help her but decided against it. Silence.

"Doctor? Christine?" Humans! He turned and she was gone. "Doctor, where are you?"

The twin moons were now high in the sky. They lit up the whole side of the mountain. She should not be too hard to find. He checked his scanner. A giggle. "Doctor, please, we must return to the ship immediately!" A flash of white blanket. "Doctor, that is an order. Doctor, running in the darkness is quite dangerous. One of us could be injured." He caught another glimpse of the blanket fluttering in the night air.

She was standing at the edge of the mountainside, arms spread overhead, the blanket flying in the wind above her. She was incredibly beautiful standing there naked in the moonlight, her hair blowing freely behind her. She turned to look at him. Her eyes -- how had he missed those eyes.

"Spock, haven't you ever wanted to just let yourself go and howl at the moon?"

"Yes, Christine, many times." She is howling! Something deep within him stirred.

Suddenly she swayed. He rushed to her, pulling her from the edge. He grabbed the blanket and wrapped it around her. He circled his arms around her, not daring to loosen them and moved back from the edge. He braced against the maelstrom of her state of mind. She was clearly and completely out of control.

She clutched him, trembling. "Spock?" Suddenly she was confused. Was she dreaming? How could he be here? And where was here?

She raised her face and kissed her dream. "Doctor-- Christine--" She is not responsible -- I cannot--

But he did not want to stop her. He suddenly wanted to make love (?) to her right here on the mountain. Her arms slipped around his neck and she pulled him closer. He did not intend to take advantage of her. Some very human part of him wanted her. He did not intend to kiss her! And yet, he did, passionately.

Finally, reluctantly, he pulled away. "We must go," he said. "They are waiting for us." And they shimmered away into the moonlight.

The following evening Spock's meditation was interrupted by the chime at the door. Christine noticed his robe. "I'm sorry, Mr. Spock, I hope I'm not disturbing you. May I come in for a moment?"

"Of course, Doctor. I was just finishing my meditations. Won't you sit down?"

"Mr. Spock, I wanted to thank you for coming after me yesterday. I understand I made quite a spectacle of myself. I seem to have some significant memory lapses. I don't remember much of what happened. I hope I didn't embarrass you?"

He had not considered that her memory might be impaired by the narcotic. "Doctor, as you seem to be aware of the circumstances, I assure you I was not embarrassed. I trust you are feeling better?"

She looked closely at him for a moment giving him every opportunity. "Yes, Mr. Spock," she said quietly. "I'm just about over it. Well, I just wanted to thank you." She stopped before going out the door. She searched his eyes for something else. "Well, goodbye then."

"Good night, Doctor." And then the door closed.