Disclaimer: Star Trek is the property of Paramount/Viacom. This story is the property of Mzsnaz and is copyright (c) 2005 by Mzsnaz. Rated PG.
The Silence of the Damns
"I'm telling you, Jim, I can do it!" McCoy exclaimed, as he and the Captain walked out of the turbolift onto the bridge of the Enterprise. "I'm serious this year. It's going to be a piece of cake."
"Bones, you tried last year, and failed," Kirk reminded his Chief Medical Officer. "Why torture yourself? You can't do it."
The ship's First Officer glanced over at the two officers engaged in conversation.
"Doctor, I trust that you are not making another of these 'New Year' promises? They are quite illogical. If you had any intention of changing your behavior, it should not be necessary to wait until a specific point in time to do so."
"They're called 'resolutions', Spock, not promises," McCoy gruffly said. "And, for us illogical humans, it helps to have a specific point in time to say 'OK, this is it! I'm doing this'."
Kirk could only shake his head. "But, Bones. You tried last year, and..."
"That was then. I'm more motivated this year. I guarantee I can do it." He broadly grinned as the Captain sighed.
Spock raised an eyebrow at the smiling Doctor. "What are you attempting to do this New Year, Doctor? Improve your medical skills past the point of medieval competence?"
"Oh, funny!" McCoy sarcastically drawled. "I'd like to see you give up slander for the New Year, but I know that wouldn't be possible. No, I'm going to give up swearing, in every shape, form and fashion."
All eyes focused on the Doctor, who glowered back at them.
"I'm serious!" he insisted. "I didn't realize how awful my language has gotten over the past few years. It's time to clean it up. No more cursing, slang ... nothing. Notice how I have already improved my vocabulary by avoiding foul language. It's easy."
The Captain sat in his command chair and checked the chronometer.
"Bones, it's only one minute until midnight in Georgia. Are you sure you don't want to ... oh, I don't know ... let loose with a few last, choice words?" The bridge crew snickered as the Doctor rolled his eyes.
"Oh, fine. No one believes me. You'll see! Especially you!" McCoy pointed a finger at the science officer. "You will be amazed and impressed with my newfound refinement. It will impress even a Vulcan."
"I see, Doctor," the First Officer dryly responded. "There are only 25.64 seconds left until your transformation. Are you certain that you will not reconsider?"
"Nope. I'm all set. Let's get ready for the New Year ... and the new, curse-free Doctor McCoy!"
"Happy New Year!" The bridge crew all cheered ... everyone except Spock, of course.
A loud, crackling pop resounded through the Bridge, causing everyone to jump.
"Hey! What the hell was ... ah, damn."
The bridge erupted in laughter and cheers as the Doctor felt a growing rage at his failure. He searched for the source of the noise, and finally noticed Mr. Chekov holding a shiny, red foil object in his hand. The young officer had a huge grin on his face.
"Mr. Chekov ... what do you have in your hand, pray tell?" The Doctor advanced on the navigator even as he tried to slip away from his station.
"Uh ... Doctor. Well ... it is a Russian invention," the nervous officer explained. "A popper. A noisemaker. That is all."
The Captain noncommittally turned to his First Officer.
"4.743 seconds, Captain. 1.576 seconds longer than last year. The Doctor has shown a steady, if somewhat limited, progression in his resolve."
The Doctor stormed to the turbo lift doors as the guffaws once again filled the bridge. His outraged voice shook the very walls.
"I just want y'all to know that there is a special place in hell for people who interfere with the resolutions of a man who's only trying to improve himself!"
He then cut loose with a string of curses and slurs that had even the burly, red-shirted ensigns blushing by the time he was finished. With one upraised middle finger, he stormed off the bridge. The stunned crew looked toward their Captain for guidance. Kirk looked at Spock.
"Well, that was certainly educational," Kirk lightly said. "I'll have to add several of those to my curse file."
"Indeed, Captain," the staid Vulcan replied. "I had no idea that the Doctor was fluent in so many different languages."
"We will need to be on guard, I suppose," the Captain admitted as he glanced over his shoulder at the closed lift doors. "I mean ... April 1st will be here before we know it."
"Doctor McCoy did mention that date," Spock added. "What is the significance of April 1st?"
"April Fools' Day, Spock," Kirk said as the Vulcan's right eyebrow rose. "It might beneficial to take shore leave during that time ... or transfer to a ship that's as far away from the Doctor as possible..."