DISCLAIMER: The Star Trek characters are the property of Paramount Studios, Inc. The story contents are the creation and property of T'Ryl and is copyright (c) 2002 by T'Ryl. Rated PG13.
A Day to Remember
Christine waited with her mother in Dr. Sims office, the family's physician since well before her birth. She always hated the annual back to school physicals. This year had promised to be even worse; her very first gynecological exam would take place. The thought of having cold metal inside her was unappealing, to say the least.
Just eight short months ago, she began her voyage into womanhood, or so her mother called it. To Christine it was a nuisance, the cramping, bleeding, and uncomfortable pads her mother made her wear. Worst of it was so far she had no regular cycle. Her other friends 'time of the month' came on the average every 29 days. Hers followed no logical pattern. She started once after 17 days and then the next after 32 days. None had been what would be considered normal.
"Christine Chapel," the nurse's voice called into the waiting room. Christine looked up to the nurse, the moment had arrived, it was her turn. She felt her heart race in anticipation of the exam. As her mother got up from her seat, the Nurse Grant told her, "No, Mrs. Chapel, the, Doctor wants to see Christine alone."
Christine felt fear rising up in her. She had never before had an appointment without her mother on hand; she held her hand during all her 'baby' shots. As she rose from her seat, she gave a slide long glance to her mother, whom in turn gave her a reassuring smile. "Okay, I guess I'm ready." She stood walking slowly to the doors that awaited her.
"Christine Chapel, don't dawdle, Dr. Sims is a busy man," her mother said to her.
With her mother's words, she quickened her pace.
"Don't worry Christine, it'll be okay," Nurse Grant told her. Her face held a smile of reassurance. "There's nothing to it, your regular check up," she motioned to the scale as they approached it, "followed by a gynecological check."
After Christine settled herself on the scale, the nurse told her, "Well, you've gain a few pounds. Now let's see if you're still growing." She adjusted the stick to accurately read Christine's height. "Well, your height is the same. Don't worry, though, weigh gain isn't all that uncommon among teens when the hormones run rampant."
Christine looked down over her body, if she had gained weight she wanted to know where. She had been in a size five for the past year.
"In here, Christine," the nurse told her as they came to exam room three. "You know the routine," she said as she handed her a gown, "but this time no underwear." She did all the basic check-up, blood pressure, and temperature. "My part is all done, when you're ready hit the call button. Oh, and don't worry I'll be in here with you."
Christine smiled as she took the gown. "Thanks." After the nurse left her alone in the room, she undressed. Slowly, she removed her clothes one by one, until she heard her mother's "don't dawdle" in the back of her mind. With a sigh, she slipped on the gown and hit the buzzer. Better get this over with, she thought to herself.
She waited no more than five minutes for the nurse to return, this time with Dr. Sims. "Well, hello there, Christine," his smile was friendly and comfortable.
"Hi, Dr. Sims," she returned.
"Before we get started, let's have a talk," Dr. Sims told her, as he sat on the stool beside the table. Pulling out his stethoscope, he listened to her heart and lungs. "Well, they sound good," he told her, listening to her heart and lungs.
"A talk? About what?" Christine asked.
"Oh, life. Things young ladies like yourself should know about. Things a doctor like myself should know about you." He said as he looked into her blue eyes. He had cared for her since she was one day old, being at her birth. She was even one of his last patients.
Christine watched every wrinkle on the doctor's face. They would change positions every time he would say something. Watching the wrinkles was the only thing that was going to help her get through the talk she knew would come next. "Okay."
With a smile he began, "You're sixteen now, at our last meeting you had said you had not yet began your menstruation cycle." He paused a moment to allow her to answer.
"I started that back in," she briefly paused to count back the months, "late January. Although, it isn't regular as I was told it should be. It varies widely from month to month."
"You just started, eight months ago; on some women, it takes a few years to get into a 'regular' cycle. Nevertheless, I can give you something to make them more regular, if you would like. Now why don't you lie back and we can begin the exam. I'll finish my talk as we go." Christine did as her doctor commanded. "Good, now I'm going to guide your feet into two holsters." Gently, he placed her feet into the holsters. "Now the fun begins," he said with a smile.
Warming his instruments, he prepared to guide them into their place for the exam. With a look he said, "You're at an age when you might want to think about a more," he had given this speech so many times it should have been redundant, "physical relationship with a young man." He didn't have to ask her to know she had at one point been sexually active. The signs were there, right in front of him.
Christine felt the breath catch in her throat. "I... I," she had had sex, but only once. Even that had been a mistake, as she looked back on it. She didn't even know the boy she had been with. She only remembered, he was Vulcan. However, she did remember enough to know she was the instigator.
"It's alright, Christine, what you do is your business," he told her as he inserted the speculum, spreading it so that he may get a better look at the interior. As he guided the light down to give proper lighting, he notice one thing on her cervix that really shouldn't be there. "Christine, I'm going to run a blood test on you."
"A blood test?" The idea of being prodded by a hypo chilled her.
Without answering why, he just asked her, "When was your last period?" He watched her face.
"It started June 27th. Why?" she asked.
He looked at his nurse, "The blood please."
"Sorry, Dr. Sims," she replied and prepared a hypo to get the needed blood from her patient.
Turning back to Christine, "When was the last time you were sexually active?" he asked her. The blood test would without a doubt confirm or deny what he thought.
"July 12th, the night of my sixteenth birthday," she told him, as she felt the blood rush to her cheeks. Strangely, she felt compelled to add, "With a half-Vulcan."
"Here you are, Doctor," the nurse told him as she handed him the report. Her eyes scanned Christine carefully, as she frowned.
Looking over the PADD, Dr. Sims gave an almost silent sigh. "Nurse Grant, get Christine's mother." With a nod, she left. "Christine, sit up," he said as he removed her feet from the stirrups. "Before your mother comes in, I think you should know first, you're pregnant."
After a moment, she was able to speak. "Pregnant? But how, I only had sex that one time," she asked, as what he told her sunk in.
He gave a slight smile. "It only takes once, Christine."
Christine was near tears, her head, spinning in two directions at once. How could she be pregnant? What was she going to do? What would her parents say? Should she tell that Vulcan.(oh. yeah, Spock)? She sat watching the wall until her mother entered the room.
"Mrs. Chapel, I need to refer Christine to a colleague of mine, Dr. Davison," Dr. Sims told her mother.
"Who's Dr. Davison? What wrong with Christine?" she asked looked at the blank expression on her daughter's face.
"Dr. Davison is a obstetrician that specializes in problem pregnancies." Dr. Sims never believed in beating round the bush.
Christine's mother looked at her daughter, "My Christine ... is pregnant?" She had never before felt such disappointment. This could not be happening to her, she was too young to be a grandmother. "Make the appointment, now may we go?" She wanted to speak with her daughter privately.
With a nod, Dr. Sims told her, "Yes, Christine, may leave now. Expect to see Dr. Davison in no more than two days. From what Christine said, we need to have her treatment begin right away."
All Mrs. Chapel could do was to nod; she was still in too much shock.
Christine hopped off the table, waiting until the nurse and doctor left. Just from the look in her mother's eyes, she knew she was in for it. "I'm sorry," she said meekly.
"Who, Christine?" she demanded from her daughter.
"Just a boy, Mama," Christine replied.
"Was it John?" she asked.
Christine's eyes widened. "Oh, God, no, not John." She looked down at the floor a moment. "It was a cadet at Starfleet Academy.a half-Vulcan cadet."
"Does this cadet have a name?" she asked as trying to remain calm.
"Spock. I think. I was pretty drunk at the time," Christine admitted.
"Drinking too?" She shook her head. She tried to tell her husband Christine didn't need to go to San Francisco. "Let's go, young lady. I think you need to have a nice long talk with your dad."
Christine took a deep breath. "I guess I do." She wasn't looking forward to it, especially after the last 'talk' they had about John. His voice could be heard three blocks away. At that time nothing more happen than simple necking.
The entire trip home had been quiet. Christine spent most of her time peering out the window of her mother's convertible skimmer. As she watched they approached the familiar drive of the her parents' home, she felt apprehensive about the 'talk' she was yet to have with her father. The entire way home, she had carefully weighed her options: giving her baby up for adoption, dropping out of school and raising the child herself, or even the idea of abortion popped into her head once. Thankfully, the latter of the options was not one she would ever seriously consider. It was murder in her eyes, not only that, she had no right to kill a life that belonged to someone else as much as it did her.
With a quick thought of that night, Christine decided, she would contact that Spock and tell him. It was only fair he knew. He was after all going to be a father, but if she kept her baby, she would hold him to nothing. It wasn't his fault, it was hers and she would take full responsibility for her actions.
As the skimmer stopped in the front of the house, Christine smiled at the fact her father was not yet home. She jumped out of the car, fumbled in her pocket for her key, and ran straight to her room. Once she reached her room, she began the call to Starfleet Academy. She had the call placed to the dorm she remembered taking Spock back to, she asked the cadet that came on, "Is Cadet Spock of Vulcan there?"
The boy looked at Christine, "No, he is out with his class on a training mission. They won't be back for a full three weeks."
"Oh, okay, thank-you," she answered disappointed, as she cut the signal. How can I ever tell you I'm pregnant, Spock, without your being there? Strangly she felt a sense of puzzlement in the back of her mind. She lay on her bed, looking up at the ceiling, "What am I ever going to do now?" Her dreams now crushed by her own accord. How could she be a doctor, if she had a baby? Sobbing into her pillow this was just something she didn't want to have to deal with.
* * *
"Christine," a familiar voice called out to her. As Christine slowly opened her eyes from her sleep, she saw the face of her father sitting on the edge of the bed. "Here, let me help you," he said gently.
"Daddy," she said as she realized her mother already told him.
"Shhhh," he said as he ran his hand through her thick brown hair. "Part of this is my fault. If I would've trusted you enough with John this never would have happen." It was the stories he remembered of his aunt that kept him from becoming angry with his daughter. However, nothing could stop the feeling of hurt and disappointment. At the same time, his head still pounded from the lecture he got from his wife. "I understand this boy is a cadet at Starfleet Academy."
"Yes Daddy, Cadet Spock," she said as she looked at her father through red swollen eyes.
"Spock, that is not a human name. It sounds more Vulcan." He knew enough about Vulcans that he was sure it was a Vulcan name. Not to mention the name sounded familiar.
"Spock, is only half Vulcan. As I recall, his mother or father is human." she said, afraid she was going to yet be in for it. She had no real clue whom this boy really was, he was just a one night stand.
As history clicked, he told her, "His mother is human, he was the first Terran/Vulcan hybrid to be brought to full term." This would no doubt complicate the issue. His father was a well-known Vulcan Ambassador. "Have you contacted him yet?"
"I tried," she said with disappointment to her tone, "but he was out on a training mission."
"I see, in the mean time, let's contact your grandfather and see what he thinks. I know, given this Spock's stature on Vulcan, it may cause problems," he told her.
"Why?" she asked.
"Well, from the few Vulcans I know, they marry at age seven," he told her. "Add the fact his father is Ambassador Sarek, he was more than likely married at that age, as is their custom."
"Married?" she whispered. Closing her eyes, she cursed Spock. She felt used, his wife was not there to sleep with but she was. How many other girls had he done this too?
Again, she felt a simple questioning thought in the back of her mind. This time more intelligible then the last, 'What have I done to hurt you?'
She looked around, but only she and her father sat in her room. "Did you hear that?"
"Hear what, Christine?" He asked concerned.
"Did you hear 'What have I done to hurt you?' I heard it almost as plain as day." She looked at her father expectantly. She didn't want to think she was going crazy as well as being pregnant.
"No, honey I didn't." He became even more concerned. If she was hearing voices, he would have to seek medical attention for her right away.
* * *
Spock had just finished his last training exercise for the day when he felt the soft voice of a female. Her words rang through his mind. 'How can I ever tell you I'm pregnant, Spock, without your being there.' The words spoken and the mind he felt, he sharply remembered the night he had a very private night with one Christine Chapel. He felt greatly puzzled at her thoughts. It had been the first time since that night he had felt her within his mind.
What was this about being pregnant? Before he had the chance to ponder on it in any detail, he heard another voice in his mind. 'You dare mock me?' the voice was harsh, cold, and full of rage.
'T'Pring, I have not mocked you,' he responded.
His mind felt the fiery of her thought, 'How dare you, you contemptible human nature has caused you to go against your Vulcan nature. You do not think I felt the night you gave yourself to her? Just as I feel her reaching out for you now.' She gave the impression of knowledge of the link but not what was said. 'I am in the position to demand restitution.'
'Make your demands, T'Pring.' He knew, full well, Vulcan laws on breaking one's bond. She would be entitled to half his possessions. Were the roles reversed, he would have had the right to call for her death in a timeless, no longer used ceremony.
'I will excuse these evils this time, provided you never again allow her thoughts to enter your mind. In the event they do so, I shall rightfully take what is my due.' She seemed almost bitter at the realization her 'due' now lessened by Sarek disowning his son.
Spock reluctantly agreed. 'I also ask to be given three hours of meditation to remove all images from my mind.'
'That is acceptable,' she replied.
'Three hours without your interfering in my thoughts,' he demanded.
'Very well, take your three hours for your human lover.' She returned with a hiss. The pure anger and resentment of her thoughts could be easily felt.
Once Spock no longer felt T'Pring's presence, he began to consider why he felt the presence of a female he had only felt the mind once in his life. It wasn't her entire thought, more a calling to him. Trying to figure why he was able to feel some of her thoughts, he relived every detail of that night, 18 days earlier. Even the memory of that night caused his body to respond.
Nothing seemed out of the ordinary until the images of his body tightly pressed over hers. Strides he used to give her to most pleasure. The few moments before he released himself into her, he remembered, his hand, which had been holding tightly to her long brown hair, had moved to her psi points. For a Vulcan, it was a natural part of the final climax to feel it with both mind and body. He had been inexperienced in both the methods of Vulcan love and human love.
As the images replayed, he saw his mind search hers out, intertwining the two into one. Somehow, he figured, he had formed a bond of sorts. Even this still didn't explain why he could feel a single thought directed at him. What was it that he felt, oh yes, the words 'I'm pregnant' rang through his mind.
Once again, before he was able to give it too much thought, a great anger was projected from Christine, feelings of bitter rage at being used, when his wife was not there. Stunned at the thought she would think him, inaccurately married. Hurt that she would think him capable of using her, when it was she that had used him.
He reached out to her once again with his mind, 'What have I done to hurt you?' He hoped she would be able to understand his thought and reply, before his allotted time frame expired.
* * *
After an hour passed with no reply what so ever, he began his session of meditation, which he hoped would clear his thoughts of Christine once and for all. Now he wished, it would have been allowed to bring his meditation incenses. However, since he was made to share the room with five other cadets, he was left solely to the self-induced techniques his father had taught him. A few drawn out breaths, in -- through the mouth, out -- through the nose, with closed his eyes he focused on Surak's principles of logic.
After a short thirty minutes of meditation, Captain Blake interrupted his thoughts. "Cadet, Spock." The man said with a PADD in his hand. When Spock looked up to him and saluted, he continued, "I have been informed that you are to report to Pluto, for a ten month training mission. It seems someone want to be assured your Vulcan body can with stand the bitter cold. As a Starfleet Officer and scientist, there will be times you will be required to spends lengthy times on a planet that has temperatures well below 0c." However, it was more his suspicion, Cadet Spock had done something to anger some Admiral. Training on Pluto was considered off limits to lower classmen, normally only third and forth year cadets spent six months in training there. This was to insure they had already had all of the prerequisites of survival training.
Spock, being a cadet, was not allowed to question orders, "Very well, Sir. Will I be returned to Earth first?" He stood stiffly at attention.
Blake shock his head, "No, cadet, you along with two other cadets on my ship will be transported via shuttle directly to Pluto. I am not sure you know these cadets, but in the next two hours I would suggest you seek them out, Cadet Jason Flint from Engineering, and Cadet Randy Jones from Environmental Sciences. Jason will be the commanding cadet. Your survival will depend on how well you are able to work with these two and three other cadets that you will meet, upon your arrival."
"When will we arrive?" Spock asked, wondering why he was being sent to Pluto, so soon in his training. He had heard the living conditions were harsh. The cadets were left with nothing more then, a knife, thermo parkas, and a tent. They were also given enough food for the week long trek it would take from the drop off to the training facility. Once they arrived at the training facility they were treated like kings for a 48-hour period; a time best spent designing the shelter that would be their home for the next six months. Over that time, they would have to create and maintain a greenhouse, which would magnify what little sunlight Pluto received from Sol, to produce viable plants.
Spock was at least grateful that the cadets would live on an herbivore diet. However, Spock had just been told he would be there for ten months instead of the normal six months, why?
"You will be taken to the drop off site at 1700 hours, given 24 hours in which to eat, sleep an prepare." He informed the cadet. "Like I mentioned, cadet, I suggest you use your time wisely, between now and then. You have not been provided the required cold weather survival training. I believe, I remember hearing as a Vulcan, you underwent extensive training as a youth. That training will be put to the ultimate test in the frigid cold of Pluto. I will leave you so that you may prepare." As he turned, he hoped that this cadet would be ready for the training he was about to undergo. Every year, at least one cadet died because of hypothermia, he really didn't want to see Starfleet's first Vulcan to be the next victim.
"Aye, Sir," he said as he offered the normal salute.
* * *
"We have to play babysitter to that Vulcan," Randy complained.
"Stop your bitching. We have our orders, live with it," Jason told him. With a smile he added, "That's an order cadet."
Randy gave his leader a mock salute. "Sir, Yes, Sir."
The two boys laughed. Neither had been altogether thrilled at the thought of their training being extended for four months because, as rumor had it, this Vulcan did something to piss off an Admiral.
For Jason, this would be his final test of endurance before the Koboshimaro. Randy, still a junior, was in the top one percentile in his class. "So who else is going to be there?"
"Lee Cooper, from Medical, Dustin Marks, a herbologist, and Jimmy," Jason said.
"If Jimmy is on the team, why isn't he in command?" Randy asked. Jimmy had command training anyway, not to mention being the highest-ranking cadet on the team.
"It seems he just wanted to be able to 'lay back and relax' this trip," Jason said. "If I know Jimmy, though, he'll be in charge before this is over. Well, we better get packing, we don't have a lot of time."
* * *
Lee and Dustin came rushing into the room; neither could believe what they had just heard. "Jimmy, my brother, Admiral Chapel's aide, just told me, we get to play babysitter to some Vulcan cadet," Dustin said out of breath.
"What are you talking about?" Jimmy asked, lifting his head from his packing.
"You know my brother Drew. Well, he told me Admiral Chapel's son called. The next thing Drew knew, the Admiral slammed the door to his office. He heard him say something like, 'Don't worry. Cadet Spock will pay dearly for what he did to Chris,'" Dustin said, proud he knew something about someone even if it was a rumor.
Lee looked between the two boys. "Tell him the worst of it ... for us."
Jimmy looked at looked at the two boys in a questioning manner. "What would he have to do with us?"
"Well, Jimmy, that Vulcan just tacked on four months to our training exercise," Dustin told him, angered at the very thought. Pluto would be bad enough for six months, now thanks to something the Vulcan did 'Chris', who ever that was, they got stuck with four more.
Jimmy's eyes widened. "What! If I remember right, he is only a freshman."
"Jimmy, Drew really thinks Admiral Chapel hopes that this Vulcan will, succumb to the weather and die. The way I understand it, he is hot. This Chris is supposed to have some medical stuff done here in San Francisco."
The boy's hazel eyes widened somewhat. Admiral or no Admiral, he was not about to let anyone one die on this exercise ... not if he could help it. "Well, then Admiral Chapel will be disappointed."
"You mean you're going to help him?" Lee asked his friend.
"Starfleet is supposed to be about respect for all life forms. Now you think you're going to tell me that some stupid Admiral wants to pay for something, possibly with a life. I don't fucking think so!" He was not about to let anything happen to anyone even if it meant his career.
* * *
Spock stood in his cabin alone, utterly alone. He used his time, instead of seeking out the cadets, preparing his mind for the harsh climate his body would endure in less than five hours. For Vulcans, it was quite possible to separate mind from body, or control the physical needs of the body. Spock knew, full well, his desert life style left him unprepared for the harshness of Pluto. His only hope for survival was the one thing that he rather not consider, if human side was strong enough to allow him to endure the frigid weather. As he was not entirely up-to-date on the surface of the planet he would visit, he considered it wise to spend the trip there studying about the tiny planet.
As he turned on the computer, the door opened. "Cadet Spock?" the boy asked.
"Yes," he answered.
"Hi, I'm Jason, the lead cadet," he said eyeing the Vulcan. He seemed solid enough, but was he able to handle the task ahead. "I want to make sure you know what you're looking at."
Spock allowed his eyebrow to rise. "I am looking at you."
"I mean Pluto," he said with a light laugh. "You have not had the normal training. That does not normally begin until your sophomore year. A trip in mid-January to Greenland followed by a month stay in the Arctic. The final test before going on to Pluto is a full winter in Antarctica. Let me tell you, Antarctica, with its -100c weather is nothing to what they say the -235c weather on Pluto is like. Antarctica is enough to freeze you in a matter of minutes. Pluto, they say, can freeze you in a matter of seconds. Fortunately, where we are staying has a constant temperature of -170c, livable with modern cold weather gear.
"Pluto's atmosphere consists primarily of nitrogen with some carbon monoxide and methane. The diameter would fit into an area between the western most coast of California to the eastern most border of Colorado, being 2320 km. The area we have to inhabit for the next ten months," he said with some hostility, "is enclosed in a special cover that circumvents an area of 50KM. It was designed originally to mine the nitrogen gases, I believe, but don't quote me, in the year 2189." He paused a moment, not sure if the Vulcan was even listening to him. "You did hear me right?"
"Oh, yes," Spock told the elder cadet. "Please continue."
"Alright, well, as I was saying, the area we will be in will be under a force field, which in this case keeps the frigid winds out. Oxygen, hydrogen, and other essential gases humans need are transported, on a bi-monthly basis. A subterranean facility recycles the gases the rest of the time. This same facility is where we will gather our supplies to build the bio-dome we will call home for our stay." He looked at the Vulcan coldly. "So, why is it that you rate, foregoing all the other required training?"
With an eyebrow raised, he told him, "I have been wondering that myself." He had, as he could find no logical reason for this training he was ill prepared for.
"Well, I just wanted to make sure you had everything you needed for life down there." He looked at the pack Spock had already prepared. "May I?" he asked as he thumbed the zipper. He was the lead cadet, thus this Vulcan, no mater how he felt, was his responsibility. With Spock's nod he unzipped the bag, removed the items one by one. "Don't forget the antigravity boots. We can't have you bouncing all over the place." He laughed.