DISCLAIMER: The Star Trek characters are the property of Paramount Studios, Inc. The story contents are the creation and property of Mistress V and is copyright (c) 2008 by Mistress V. Rated PG13.


Find Your Wings

by Mistress V


It was just over a year and a half after the first sports camp concluded. The second camp had been held in Germany at Liudmilla and Valery Daragan's training facility -- on real snow -- to much success. The campers dispersed to their homeworlds and the seasons continued to change. Autumn was now beginning on Terra; winter would once again follow. And across much of the quadrant, the buzz over the week's "Galaxy of Sport" was huge.


            The Thames Trophy, held annually in London each September, was the unofficial opening of the run up to the Galactic Figure Skating Championships the following February. Because this particular year marked the midway point before the next SportsFest at Lake Tahoe, the field would be gone over microscopically. It was tradition that those who would be retiring did so by not making an appearance here. But what fueled the media circus is that the event also served as a launching platform for new talent, which might shine for the next SportsFest...or beyond. There already was talk about the Portillo, Chile games to be held in six years. Skaters had long, interesting careers.


            And this year was no exception. Word of a young Klingon jumper, coached by Liudmilla and Valery Daragan, was running through the ladies' field. The Ferengi were taking long range bets on this one, so amazing was her ability or so it was rumored. They were also bouncing the transmission off a nearby neutral border space station so that special places for watching the bootleg broadcast would be available on the homeworld, for a profit of course. Figure skating was not something the high council's communications division gave a great deal of notice to. Hockey, yes. Maids dancing on ice? Oh come now.


            All that was about to change forever.


* * *


"Representing the Klingon homeworld, Kanou Kluth!"


            A small, shy girl skated out onto the ice, saluted the judges, and gave a graceful curtsy.


            "She learned well from T'Mara," Spock remarked, recalling the two friends from the first sportscamp. His father reported that T'Mara had been awarded the ballet studentship in London and would be headed there in the new year, with Vulcan's approval.


            "Mmmmmm," Christine and Nyota sighed together.


            "Look at that costume," Nyota said, pointing to the screen. "It has Kala written all over it!" For the skirted all in one, now the norm in women's skating, was a variation on the model Kala first wore on Vulcan, adapted for a younger girl.


            "And she helped Kanou choose her music, too," Christine added, realizing how proud they were of their friend. It wasn't that long ago she'd been a shy young woman on board. Amazing what friendship (and the love of a good man) could do to a person.


            The music cued, Enya's "Storms in Africa II". Kanou opened with an impressive triple triple, bobbling only slightly on the second jump.


            "That'll be a quad by Portillo," Christine said, mostly to herself.


            "Easily a quad combo by Portillo, wouldn't you say?" one commentator asked the other. Spock's eyebrow raised.


            Kanou began another of her elements. Nyota gasped. "Chris! That's your arabesque sequence. I'd know it anywhere!"


            "It should be." Christine was quiet but pleased. "I taught it to her, remember?"


            Spock remembered.


            The routine continued, ramping up instead of cooling down, with the Klingon girl doing her required leaps with almost no effort. Then she sliced through her serpentine steps like a hot knife through butter and popped another combo, a triple/double this time.


            "Holy smoke, she should be tired by now!" Christine was staring at the monitor.


            "At a point where most skaters are tiring, this one is clearly still full of energy," said the commentator.


            Spock looked sideways at his wife. He knew she was a keen follower of this sport -- after all, they'd begun courting during the Polaris games -- but her spot on ability to analyze a routine still impressed him.


            Kanou began her final required element, a spin combination.


            "My lord, she's going to do four." Christine was whispering, her eyes glued to the spinning girl. Spock was aware of her familiarity with the program, but still wondered exactly what she meant. Four? Four what?


            His wife's prediction was once again accurate. Kanou began with a camel spin, then straightened up and wrapped her leg around herself while raising an arm, extended the leg high in a Biellman, then dropped it behind for a final extended version, all done perfectly in tandem with each change of tempo in the song's final bars. She stopped with a flourish, her face bright with a smile.


            "Oh," Nyota finally breathed.


            "My," Ade M'Benga added.


            "Lord!" Christine gasped as she did calculations on her PADD.


            Spock watched the three of them, but he was not amused at their reactions, he shared them. He, too had been astonished at what they'd just seen and was glad his friends did not notice the fact his eyebrows were now resting on the back of his neck.


* * *


            The London audience, which had been momentarily stunned into silence, finally erupted, virtually blowing the lid off the arena with its enthusiastic welcome to the new potential champion. Everyone knew it was only a matter of time.


            And that was only the reaction to Kanou's short program. Her long program was also impressive, though it had the usual lack of fine polish for one so young and inexperienced. That did not matter. Her place in the top ten meant this skater was going to be around for a long time and would just get better as she matured.


* * *


            At the Klub Klin, which had been so still the ice in glasses was heard to melt, an explosion of warrior shouts, chants and songs startled much of the New York Spaceport. When curious security forces wandered in, Koth was pouring drinks on the house for everyone. He pointed up at the vid monitor, which showed a view of the Vulcan ice dancers, Selek and T'Lea, themselves gold medalists at this event, flanked by a fashionably attired Klingon woman and her Terran husband. The four of them were leading a standing ovation for a skater, who was being showered with bouquets on the ice below.


            "That is my daughter Kala and her mate," Koth shouted proudly. "And this day, Kanou is the daughter of us all!"


            "Kai Q'apla!" came the answering roar.


* * *


            On Qo'noS, the hockey team was jumping up and down, smashing into Kando with yells of congratulations. "But she only finished eighth!" he protested, amazed.


            "So? She will win some day. Just not today! But what a debut for our people!" Coach Kluth made his pronouncement. Then he turned to his own daughter, Kanou's still shellshocked mother.


            "I did not realize just how talented she was," the woman said eventually.


            "This is only the beginning, daughter. You shall see. Kanou will make us all very proud of her."


            "I always was proud of her, my father."


* * *


            "And she'll be on the platform, I think, by Portillo." The announcer's voice was firm. He'd seen many skaters come and go. It was very clear this one was not planning on going anywhere but up.


            Mogh gave Loki a Terran high five. "And perhaps I shall be as well!" His own snowboarding, begun as an amusement, was progressing extremely well. Mogh's specialty was snowboard cross, the motocross of the sport. He was the current Qo'noS champion in that discipline--at eleven.


            "You never know," Worf said thoughtfully, recalling the first time he'd ever been on a snowboard himself. Were Spock and his wife also watching this broadcast somewhere? He presumed so, it being only logical. After all, they spoke of the skater now and then in their vidmessages. He looked over at his own wife, who, along with their now toddler aged daughter and Lak'sha, were still transfixed by what they'd just witnessed.


* * *


            At the Shikahr School for the Arts, where a group of young women viewed the competition with great interest, T'Mara watched her friend sit in front of the cameras with her coaches, bouquets piled high on her lap. She waved to the audience, first with one hand, then the other. As her marks came up, a happy smile lit her face.


            "One would almost think she is giving a ta'al," T'Ann said thoughtfully as she regarded the young Klingon.


            "Coincidence, perhaps," T'Sala replied. "Though it is most close to the greeting, I must admit."


            T'Mara said nothing to her classmates, but inside her heart sang as she realized the promise she and her friend made on that last day of sportscamp was holding true. Although she knew Kanou could not see her, T'Mara surreptitiously gave a tiny little tug to the bottom of her ear in answer to the special sign of friendship she'd just witnessed.


            Soon, T'Mara realized, she would be in London to begin her studies with the Royal Ballet. Next year she herself would be in the audience at the Thames Trophy, and perhaps the Trophee Lalique over in Paris, and possibly she could convince her parents and baby brother to visit for this. Germany and England were very close in distance. She and Kanou would speak by vidphone regularly and without arousing comment; visits would be easy to arrange. T'Mara's parents had promised their daughter she could see her special friend whenever their training schedules allowed.


            T'Mara couldn't wait to leave for Terra.


* * *


            "And to think were it not for Stark's endeavor, the young woman would never have been afforded this priceless opportunity," Sarek remarked. "I feel she will go far in this sport. As will her friend, T'Mara. Both of them are a credit to their disciplines, from what I am hearing."


            "Then hosting the camp was the logical thing for Vulcan to do, was it not?" General Stoick asked as he poured his guests a celebratory brandy.


            "Most logical," Amanda agreed. "Do you not think, T'Ser?"


            General Stoick's new bondmate gave a pleased nod.


* * *  


Late at night at an undisclosed home in a quiet neighborhood, a group of children and adults watched a grainy, poorly transmitted broadcast that had been bounced through several communications systems.


            "A Klin. And she is so talented," one woman said. "Perhaps it is not as those in the government would say. Perhaps all truly are welcomed in competition."


            Chula held her precious Vulcan Heat sandboard tightly to her chest and smiled so hard it hurt. "Someday a Romulan shall stand tall as a competitor with all the races of our galaxy. And someday, perhaps, they might be a champion too."


            No one said otherwise, for all those present knew that on a day far in the future, such a thing might indeed happen.


* * *


            "So why are we going to the holodeck, commander? Has all this skating given you ideas?" Christine asked as they exited the turbolift later that evening.


            "Not precisely," Spock replied non-commitally. "I have...a surprise of sorts for you."


            Surprise? Christine's eyebrow raised in a perfect imitation of her husband. His surprises usually involved carnal knowledge. Mmm. That was a nice prospect, she decided.


            "Computer. Run program Spock, Starbase 74." He turned to his wife with an enigmatic little smile as the doors opened. The penny dropped. It was September -- early September. Two years ago, to the day, she realized, they'd been at Starbase 74. Just after their honeymoon, en route to extra leave on Majoricia. But they'd had to spend the night on board while the ship was in spacedock. Or so her husband always maintained.


            "You Vulcan sentimentalist," she laughed as they beheld a perfect recreation of the Enterprise bridge, absolutely deserted. "You remembered, didn't you?"


            "Remembered, Doctor? That is a night I shall not soon forget." Spock embraced his wife with a definite agenda in mind. "Now kindly remove your clothes and take your position in the captain's chair. Just as you did that night," he growled.


            Christine gave a tug to the chain around his neck and returned his kiss with equal ardor. "Aye, sir," she whispered. "If you help me remove them."


* * *


            Kirk wondered why his First Officer looked so tired the next morning. Surely the skating hadn't been that inspirational? Down in sickbay, Leonard McCoy wondered the same thing about his ACMO, who he'd found dozing in her office during the lunchbreak.


            "That Vulcan," he muttered to himself.


* * *


            Early the next day, Kluth arrived to lead his team through their morning workout and was stunned to find a dozen young ladies and their mothers lined up to inquire about skating lessons. And a few warriors stopped by later to ask when Kanou might be eligible to seek a mate, on behalf of their sons.


* * *


            Stark was summoned to Ambassador Sarek's office the first thing next morning.


            "Is there a problem?" The champion was thinking ahead to the Vulcan Snowboard Invitational, to be held that weekend in Shikahr. And the fact Sierra was about to have her first litter, far from Terra, under the supervision of the Shikahr zoo's chief veterinarian.


            "Ambassador Kl'o'rox called me late last night after the broadcast. The Klingon government is willing to sponsor a sportscamp on its homeworld next winter if you would deign to be there to lead it."




* * *


On a wintry January afternoon, T'Mara and her ballet mistress, T'Pas, made their way down a corridor at the London spaceport. It had been a long, exciting trip to Terra, another step in an even longer road T'Mara had set upon. Although apprehension might be deemed illogical, she felt a twinge in her stomach at the thought of being so far from home and among people she did not know. T'Pas would stay with her for a week to help her settle in, but after that, she would be on her own.


            As they entered the arrivals hall, she noticed a sign, hand lettered in her own language reading "Welcome, T'Mara!". And there holding it was Kanou, waving and grinning happily. Next to her was her coach, Liudmilla Daragan. They must have made the quick trip over from Germany for the occasion. T'Mara looked up questioningly at the older woman who had accompanied her thus far on her journey.


            "It is always logical to have good friends, T'Mara," T'Pas said encouragingly. "And your friend seems to be very good, indeed."


            It wasn't exactly logical to feel excitement or joy, either, but T'Mara was bubbling over with both (just under the surface, of course). She sped up her steps and soon faced her friend, who gave her a ta'al, and a smile.


            "So tell me, my sister," Kanou asked curiously as the group began walking towards the subway. "Who is this Strumm?"


            "He is ... dishy," T'Mara sighed dreamily.