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The last thing my heart expected

Chapter Text

Medbay was practically swamped. Over the past two weeks many crewmembers had come and told Doctor Leah McCoy about sleeping problems. Nights appeared to be too short and sleep brought no relaxation. They were exhausted and barely couldn’t concentrate anymore. Some of them even showed minor injuries, had rashes or their blood work showed strange things.

The medical staff was baffled. They had no explanation for it.

Jim Kirk was one of them and Leah McCoy herself felt also tired all the time.

“We need to find out what’s going on”, Jim said firmly when he was sitting on a biobed.

Leah ran a scan with a tricorder. But aside from the usual marker of sleep deprivation she couldn’t find anything.

“Again nothing?” he asked.

Leah sighed. “I can’t find anything wrong. Well, except that you have a lack of REM sleep.”

“Wrong is that this is happening to crew members from all over the ship. We have nothing daily in common. So – what’s the connection?”

“I’m a doctor, not a fortune teller”, Leah remarked dryly.

“Scotty and Keener are looking into strange phenomena, but so far they didn’t find anything.” Jim sighed tiredly and ran a hand over his face. “Can you give me something for a good night’s sleep? I’m on edge all day. I’m ready to snap at anyone. I’m just so tired and exhausted.”

“The meds we have didn’t work on the others and you’re allergic to them anyway. You could try a warm milk toddy. You find it in the replicator.”

He blinked and laughed. “You’re kidding…”

“No, not at all”, Leah replied with a serious expression. “The heat activates amino acids in the lactose, making it a natural sedative. Besides, this is a recipe of my greatgrandmother. It's delicious.”

Jim slowly nodded. “Okay. At this point, I'll try anything, I guess.” He hopped off the biobed and turned to leave. But suddenly he felt a little flirty. “Wanna tuck me in?” he added with a wink.

Leah rolled her eyes. “I’m a doctor, not the captain’s nanny.”

He raised his eyebrows, suddenly imagining her in an old-fashioned nanny outfit. But he quickly dismissed that thought, for she was his best friend.

“Although I sometime feel like one”, Leah added quietly, so he didn’t hear her.

Jim walked towards the door, but turned back to her again. “By the way – you’re not looking so good yourself. Have you tried a warm milk toddy?” he said with a grin.

“Out, or I’ll give you that hypo anyway.”

Leah was about to go back to her work when a nurse came to her and handed her a PADD with additional scans from the biobed she’d almost forgotten about. The doctor looked closely at them in the hope something would pop up.

It did.

Big time.

“What the hell…” Leah went to a computer screen and doublechecked the readings. “Can’t be… Computer, are these really the scans of James T. Kirk, taken ten minutes ago?”

“Affirmative.”

“Is there any explanation for the divergence in the left arm bone in relation the scan from yesterday?”

“Negative.”

“Leah?”

Leah turned around and saw Doctor Geoffrey M’Benga heading for her. She just pointed to the screen.

“Did someone pull a prank on us or did the captain somehow manage to get his forearm severed and reattached overnight?” he asked.

“No prank”, she replied. “But something’s very wrong here. Computer, was Captain James T. Kirk in his quarters last night?”

“Negative.”

Leah and M’Benga’s glances locked.

“He could have slept with someone”, M’Benga suggested.

“If we were on Earth, I would agree. But he swears he wants to keep away from crew members.”

“Computer, where was the captain last night?” M’Benga tried.

“Unknown.”

They looked at each other again.

“Specify”, Leah ordered.

“Between 2309 hours and 0631 hours Captain James Tiberius Kirk was not on board the Enterprise.”

Their jaws dropped.

“How did he leave?” M’Benga asked.

“Unknown”, the computer replied.

“Computer…” Leah slowly started with a very bad feeling in her stomach. “Are currently all crew members accounted for?”

“Negative. Ensign Jelia Sunar is not on board the Enterprise.”

“Shit…” Leah exhaled sharply. “Computer, how did she leave?”

“Unknown.”

The CMO exhaled sharply. “McCoy to bridge, we have a serious problem. Emergency meeting of the senior crew in ten minutes in the observation lounge.”

“What going on?” Jim asked via com.

“I’ll explain at the meeting.” Leah cut the connection and transferred the collected data on a PADD. “Computer, inform me and Security immediately when Ensign Sunar is back on the ship.”

A beep acknowledged her order. “Confirmed.”

“McCoy to Security.”

“This is Carter. Lieutenant Hendorff is already on his way to the observation lounge.”

“Please post one or two people in front of Jelia Sunar’s quarters. She’s missing from the ship and will probably re-appear at some point. I can’t explain right now. But the computer is tracking her return. Someone needs to check on her the moment she’s back. I’ll tell you more as soon as we know more.”

“Understood. Carter out.”

 

***

 

Ten minutes later the senior officers sat at the table in the observation lounge. Only Leah McCoy was standing. She’d sent the information she had to the screen at the wall.

“I think someone is abducting crew members”, Leah started. “Currently Ensign Jelia Sunar is missing and other have been taken.”

“What?” Scotty called. “How’s that possible?”

“That’s a good question”, Jim commented.

Leah sighed. “I can only say that some crew members show signs of sleep deprivation and the computer confirmed that the captain was missing from the Enterprise during the night.”

“Did you already make further inquiries?” Spock asked.

“What do you mean?” Leah replied.

“I refer to other crew members”, Spock added.

“No. I only looked into Jim’s whereabouts and asked the computer so check if someone was currently missing. Security is informed and the computer will tell us when the ensign returns. Or more precisely: when she is returned.”

Security Chief Hendorff huffed. “I can’t believe that this is happening under my watch”, he growled and added what Spock was getting at: “Computer, give us a list of all crew members who went missing at night in the past days.”

“Working”, the computer voice replied and a list started appearing on the screen.

“When did the first absence take place, Computer?” Spock added.

The first entry on the list grew bigger and showed a stardate two weeks prior.

“That’s when my sleeping problems started”, Jim mumbled.

A beep told them that the computer had completed the list. 31 names were on it, including the Captain and the CMO. And every name showed up several times.

“Great…” Leah commented dryly. “What now? How can we make sure that they can’t take us anymore when we don’t know who they are and how they’re doing it?”

“So, we need to find out. As simple as that”, Jim said in a firm voice.

Leah rolled her eyes. “Sure. Simple as that.”

“Has anything strange happened in the past two weeks?” Nyota Uhura joined the conversation.

Scotty shrugged. “A few sensor glitches. But I tried some modifications. So I expected some problems. I thought my modification to the sensor array may have caused a pattern recognition failure.”

“What if they were not related to the modifications?” Nyota spelled out a thought.

Jim slowly nodded. “It’s worth looking into it. What was the most recent problem?”

“Yesterday, we got an alert for a EPS explosion in Cargo Bay 2, but everything was alright when we checked with an engineering and a medical team”, Scotty explained. “We thought the sensors malfunctioned. Keenser is still looking into it and doing some scans, so it won’t happen again.”

Jim nodded again. “Maybe we should look further into it. Maybe the modifications were onto something that has to do with the abductions. Run every diagnostic there is. Maybe they placed something in Cargo Bay or hid there something. Pull out all the stocks.”

“Aye, Captain”, Scotty confirmed. He picked up his PADD and typed a few quick messages to his team.

“Alright…” Jim began. “I suggest, we meet back here half an hour before the end of Alpha Shift.” He turned to Hendorff. “Check in with Engineering, Lieutenant. I want suggestions for how we can protect all crew members that were taken.”

“Yes, Sir.”

“And I will do further medical scan of everyone on that list”, Leah announced.

Jim nodded. “Dismissed. And for now raise shields. I also want a level four security alert. I need to know if anyone comes on or off this ship.”

Hendorff nodded.

Chapter Text

Jelia Sunar reappeared one hour later with a severe allergic reaction. Leah barely managed to save her life and had to put her in an artificial coma. It would take some time, but Jelia would be fine. This was the worst outcome of the abductions yet. Some crew members didn’t show any sign expect the sleep deprivation, others were injured in some way.

Meanwhile Scotty went to the Cargo Bay. “How's the scan going, Keenser?”

“I have just started level three diagnostic a minute ago. How could I possibly tell anything yet?” he complained.

Scotty gave him a confused glance. “Keenser, you’ve been here for over an hour.”

“No.” Keenser showed him the tricorder and the time on it.

Scotty shook his head and raised his PADD, pointing the time it was showing in a corner. “I'm telling you, you’ve been here for over an hour.”

Keenser huffed. “Computer, tell us the time.”

“Fourteen twenty seven hours.”

Both officers simply looked at each other. Something really strange was going on.

“What have you been doing all this time?” Scotty finally asked, still stunned.

Kennser shrugged. “I don’t know. I started the scan and suddenly you showed up.“

“Okay, we need to find out what is going on here. I think it’s safe to say that we’re in the right place. Can’t be a coincidence that you lost time here. Comp –”

The door opened and Spock entered.

“It’s still fourteen twenty seven hours, right?” Scotty asked him, forgetting that he wanted to ask the computer something.

Spock raised an eyebrow. “Almost correct. Fourteen twenty eight hours.”

“Time appears to run differently in here. Keenser lost an hour”, Scotty murmured.

“I see.”

Scotty went to a console and took a look at the readings, while Keenser was walking around with a scanner.

“Commander Spock, come here and take a look at this, would you? I think we have another sensor glitch”, the Lieutenant called.

“Sensors are functioning normally. They are detecting a subspace particle emission originating from within this room.”

“From within this room? Impossible”, Spock replied.

Scotty nodded.

“I also detect it”, Keenser called and headed towards them.  “The emission is coming from this direction”, he added pointing to a wall.

Spock touched a button on the console. “Spock to Kirk. Captain, we found something. Please come to Cargo Bay 2.”

“On my way.”

It took only two minutes until Jim Kirk entered the large room.

Spock and Keenser were both scanning a bulkhead with different devices.

“The structure of the bulkhead has been altered on a subatomic level. The metal itself is in a state of quasi-molecular flux”, Spock explained.

“What's causing it?” Jim asked.

Scotty sighed, looking at the results. “This is where it gets a little wild, Captain. Behind that panel is a junction we were using to transfer warp power to the sensor array. We're reading a subspace particle stream emanating from that junction.”

“It appears to be composed of spatially inverted tetryon particles”, Spock added. “I believe they are emanating from a tertiary subspace manifold.”

“But I thought that tetryons were unstable in normal space.”

“We don't understand it either, Captain”, Scotty said. “Something from that deep in subspace shouldn't be able to exist in our universe. But there it is.”

“So… is it dangerous? What can we do?”

“We keep an eye on it”, Scotty replied. “And we need to find out what this has to do with the abductions. There has to be a connection.”

Jim nodded. “Alright. See you at the meeting later.”

He left Scotty, Spock and Keener and went to Medbay in order to see how Leah was doing.

 

***

 

“I did scans of all the abducted crew members”, Leah explained to the captain in front of a big view screen in Medbay. “Something has caused high levels of serotonin to be produced in the visual cortex of some of them. It's concentrated in the hippocampus, which suggests that they've been exposed to a neuro-sedative. And that's not all. I have detected minute tetryon particle traces in their subdermal tissues.”

“Tetryons?“ Jim echoed. “Like the emissions Spock, Scotty and Keener detected in Cargo Bay 2. Did they already inform you that Keenser lost an hour?”

Leah nodded. “When you were on your way here. I checked with the computer. In the time in question he was not on board the Enterprise.”

“Great…” Jim commented. “So now it’s 32 people… We need to find the source of those tetryon emissions. That should lead us the place we are held when we are taken.”

“Computer, are there currently any members of the crew of the Enterprise missing?” Leah asked.

“All crew members are on board the Enterprise.”

“Hm”, Jim made. “So they don’t always have someone. And Keenser was taken while the shields were up. So doesn’t have any effect at all.”

“Scott to Kirk.”

Jim took his communicator. “Any news?”

“We found something you should see.”

“I’ll be there in a minute”, he replied and ended the connection.

“I’m coming with you.” Leah didn’t know why, but she grew suddenly very worried and had the urge to go where he was going. She had the feeling he might do something stupid.

 

***

 

Scotty pointed to a glow in the air near one of the Cargo Bay walls when the captain and the doctor. “Take a look at this.”

Spock showed them a PADD with some scans on it. “The tetryon emissions have intensified. They seem to be focusing in this direction, coalescing here. They're reading as a point of subspace energy.”

“It appears to be the beginnings of a rupture”, Scotty added and took a look at the new scans. “The tetryon emissions are modulating in a way that looks like somebody's controlling the energy.”

“Someone with bad intentions”, Jim sighed.

Scotty nodded. “You know, the signals from the modifications I made to the sensor array - some of them dig pretty deep into subspace. Maybe they accidentally caught somebody's attention.”

“Someone dangerous… and completely insane…” Leah muttered.

“At the rate the rupture is expanding, we will soon be in danger of hull breach”, Spock told the officers.

Scotty sighed. “Maybe we should try surrounding it with a subspace containment field.”

“Do it”, Jim ordered.

Scotty gestured them to stand back when two ensigns set up some equipment and activated the devices.

The Chief Engineer scanned the effects and they silently waited for a few minutes in order to see if it was working.

Finally Scotty shook his head in disappointment. “The rupture keeps expanding. I'd say we've got another five or six hours before it breaches the hull.”

“Can’t we seal it somehow?” Leah interjected.

“Not from here”, Scotty answered. “We can close the rupture by neutralising the tetryon emissions with a coherent graviton pulse. But we'd have to do that at the source.”

“How do we find the source?” the doctor replied.

“Good question, Lassie. The emissions are coming from a tertiary subspace domain, but subspace has an infinite number of domains. It's like a huge honeycomb with an endless number of cells. We need to isolate the exact cell that these emissions are coming from.”

Jim exhaled heavily. “If someone homed onto the subspace signals created by our modified signal array, could we do the same to them? Track the tetryon emissions to their universe?”

There it was again. Leah got a bad feeling. She didn’t like where Jim’s idea was going. But she decided not to jump to conclusions yet.

Spock tilted his head. “Tetryon particles have a random momentum. Our sensors cannot track them.”

“Perhaps we could construct a homing device. Something that our sensors could track”, Scotty thought out aloud.  “But the problem is that there's no way to get that device to the source.”

Jim suddenly smirked. “Yes, there is. Give it to me. They've taken me for the last few nights. If I'm right, the same thing will happen tonight.”

Leah groaned as silently as she was able to. There it was – the crazy idea.

Scotty nodded. “If you had a homing device, we could track it to your location in subspace. And as soon as they send you back to the ship, we could transmit the graviton pulse and neutralise the tetryon emissions.”

Leah shook her head. “If they send him back. What if they stop? This plan is dangerously insane.”

Jim grinned. “Awww, Bones, you’re worried about me.”

She rolled her eyes. “As I said – I’m a doctor, not a nanny. But you’re the captain and you should be careful.”

His face got serious. “They're going to take me whether I want to go or not.”

“True”, she admitted, but was more afraid about him than she would ever admit. She hated when he went willingly into danger. One of these days she would simply hypo him, so he couldn’t go aa dangerous mission.

“But… when the ruptures begin to threaten the ship, then we would have to transmit that graviton pulse. So you can’t wait for me.” Jim gave Spock an intense glance.

“Understood, Captain”, Spock confirmed. “Perhaps there is a way that we could give you an advantage. A way of keeping you conscious after they have taken you.” He looked at Leah. “Doctor, can you develop some counter-agent to the neuro-sedative that they have been giving the crew?”

She sighed. She didn’t want to be pulled into this, but at least this way she could keep him a little safer. “I could give Jim a neuro-stimulant. But the dosage would have to be rather high to counteract the effects. It could be risky.”

Jim shrugged. “I'm willing to take that risk.”

Leah huffed a little and rolled her eyes. “Of course you are.”

***

 

In the evening Jim was set up with what he needed. Leah had given him a hypo for him and Scotty and Spock had come up with a device he could wear at his arm. It would record everything and act as a transmitter. Scotty even told them there was a good chance that it could get some data from the aliens data banks – if the connection would take, that is.

Jim went to bed, keeping his uniform on.

It only took a few minutes and he suddenly noticed some strange lights in the middle of the room.

A moment later he was levitating over his bed and was being pulled towards the light.

Everything blurred for a moment and Jim found himself on some kind of biobed in a dark room. There was a strange clicking and whispering sound all around.

Carefully, Jim lifted his head. He saw several beds like this. Most of them were empty. Only one other was occupied. And seeing who was laying there made the blood freeze in his veins.

Leah.

Across the room Leah McCoy was laying on a bed.

He knew, of course, she was on the list, but it didn’t occur to him that they could take her again this very night. Either she’d fallen asleep or had been abducted while being conscious like Keenser.

Shit.

Jim didn’t get to process his shock. A strange hooded figure walked towards him and he quickly pretended to be asleep.

The alien leant over him, but went away again in order to pick up some devices.

That gave Jim a little time to look around again. He saw in horror that someone was with Leah and ran a device over her belly. He knew he had to act fast now before they did something to either of them.

Chapter Text

“The Captain has been taken”, Hendorff reported to Spock from the Security station on the bridge.

The Commander, sitting in the command chair, nodded.

“Shit.”

Spock turned his head to the Security Chief and raised an eyebrow.

“Sorry, Sir. I just got the report that Doctor McCoy went missing from her office. She’s also been taken.”

“Hopefully, she is where Captain Kirk is. He will bring her back”, Spock replied.

Hendorff took a deep breath. He hoped Spock was right. But as Chief of Security he hated not being able to do anything.

“Mr. Scott, report”, Spock demanded.

The Chief Engineer was at a bridge station and sighed. “I can't yet locate the homing signal. We've covered the entire upper subspace energy band. We're extending the scan to adjacent levels.”

Spock activated a com channel. “Lieutenant Keenser, your status?”

“The rupture has expanded another four percent. Without further reinforcement, containment field integrity will fail in about seven minutes.”

“Can you divert more power to the containment field?” Spock asked.

“I can try to augment the field with auxiliary power, but it won't be much.”

“Do it.”

“Yes, Sir.”

Suddenly Scotty made a victorious sound. “I've located the homing signal. Locking onto it now.”

“Stand by to initiate the graviton pulse”, Spock commanded.

“Graviton emitters at full power. Standing by”, Keenser reported via com.

“How much time do we have left?”

“Five minutes.”

Spock pondered for a moment. “We can't afford to wait any longer. Begin the graviton pulse.“

„Initiating pulse now“, Keenser replied.

A few moments later they heard him cursing.

“What is going on?” Spock asked.

“They’re fighting us”, Scotty said before Keenser could. “They’re trying to keep the rift open. They're reacting faster than we can shift frequencies.”

“Working on it”, Keenser just replied.

Silence followed.

“We almost got it. The rupture is beginning to close”, the Lieutenant finally said. “It’s eighty six percent closed now.”

“Any sign from the Captain?” Spock inquired.

“No…”

 

***

 

A bright hole appeared in the wall. Jim watched three aliens talking in their language and rushing towards it. He also noticed that the device from Scotty had started blinking. It was working and he knew that his crew was about to close the door to subspace.

Jim sat up, but the aliens didn’t even see. They were too busy with what the Enterprise was doing. He knew he was on the clock now. They activated some tools and he figured they were trying to counteract the Engineering team.

He carefully got up from the bed and ran to Leah.

“Bones”, he whispered and slightly shook her. “Bones, wake up!”

Her eyeslids fluttered.

Jim’s gaze ran over her body. He noticed a device at her wrist and forehead. He knew it was risky, but he removed both of them anyway. He hoped that would make her wake up.

“Bones”, he hissed again and added gently: “Wake up, Sleeping Beauty…”

“Jim…?” Her voice was weak. She barely regained consciousness.

“Come on…” He helped her sitting up, constantly glancing to the aliens. They still were busy working against the Enterprise. And Jim knew that time was running out soon.

He took a look at the beacon at his arm and noticed that the light for data transfer was active. Maybe they were in luck and would get some answers.

Leah blinked confused. She felt dizzy and knew she couldn’t stay awake for long. There had to be some drugs in her system.

It took her a moment to grasp what was going on. She was where Jim was. Which meant in subspace. And she saw how worried he looked at her.

She wondered if he’d ever looked at her like that. With so much emotion. This wasn’t how a friend looked at a friend – that startled her, but also explained a lot. She only wondered why she never noticed it before so plainly. There may have been suspicions, but now it was evident.

The aliens got more and more agitated.

Jim noticed. He had a very bad feeling now. Time was running out. The lights were flickering and he feared that the rupture would close any second now.

“We need to go!”

He helped Leah getting up, but she almost collapsed. She was about the faint. So he scooped her up bridal style and headed with her for the light.

Everything blurred.

When Jim could see again, he recognized Cargo Bay 2 and exhaled in relief. He was still carrying Leah who was unconscious again.

“We’ve got the Captain and the doctor”, Keenser called.

“Captain, are you alright?” an ensign asked Jim.

“Yeah, but we need a medical team”, Jim replied.

“The breach is closed”, Keenser proclaimed.

“Well done, Lieutenant”, Spock’s voice sounded. “Captain, are you alright?”

“Yeah…” He lowered Leah carefully to the floor, gently cupping her head, so she wouldn’t get hurt. He caressed her cheek and suddenly fully realized how close he’d come losing her. If they had something done to her or if he hadn’t been able to get her out…

A wave of emotions washed over him, leaving him completely baffled. He felt the urge of placing a kiss on the forehead, but didn’t get to do it, for the medical team rushed through the door. Without letting go of Leah’s hand, he gave them a little space.

He stayed next to her while the medics took care of their CMO and placed her on a gurney. Jim followed them to Medbay and remained as close to her as they allowed him to be.

 

***

 

JIm wasn’t sure how much time had gone by until he noticed Scotty and Spock were standing a few meters away. They were waiting patiently.

Jim hesitated and looked to Leah. She was still unconscious, but everything appeared to be alright. So he slowly walked to the officers.

“We gathered some valuable information”, Spock explained.

Scotty nodded. “The molecular structure of the alien life forms is solanogen-based. We think that's why they couldn't come through into our space, as easily as they could take us into theirs. They needed to learn how to remodulate their cellular energy states in order to survive in our universe.”

“The readings indicate they created a small pocket of our universe in their laboratory to keep those they abducted alive”, Spock continued.

Jim snorted. “Great, like putting a fish in a bucket of water.”

“That's probably what they were trying to do in Cargo Bay 2. Create a pocket of their universe in ours”, Scotty said.

“What can we do to prevent this from happening again?” Jim asked.

“It looks like they found us initially by discovering my modified sensor signal. We should warn all Starfleet ships not to make that same mistake”, Scotty replied. “And I think we got some of their data. I just need to translate it and make some sense of it.”

Jim slowly nodded. “Did come anything through before you shut it down?”

“We could not detect anything”, Spock answered.

Jim sighed and took a quick look to Leah. “Please look further into this. I don’t wanna have any surprises. And make the translation a priority, Scotty. If they try something like this again, we need as much intel as we can get.”

“Do you believe they are planning further experiments or some sort of invasion, Captain?”

“One can never know, Spock. They could be explorers, but then the question would be what kind of people they are when they do experiments like these on other life forms. We’re just lucky that no one got killed… If they took us in order to gain intel for future plans, we need to be prepared. Whatever it is – they were more than simply curious.”

Spock nodded. “I will provide Lieutenant Uhura with the verbal recordings of the unknown species. Maybe she can help Mr. Scott.”

He left and Scotty followed him.

“Captain, we need to take a look at you now”, Nurse Christine Chapel told him.

“How’s Bones?”

“They didn’t have a chance to do anything to her, as far as we can tell. But we’re running a few tests to be on the safe side.”

“Why is she still asleep? Did you give her something?”

The nurse shook her head. “No, they did. She didn’t have the same counter-agent you got. They dosed her to be unconscious for a few hours. Doctor M’Benga thinks it is best to let her sleep for that time and not to burden her body with more drugs.” She gestured Jim to take a seat on a biobed.

Reluctantly he followed her, glancing repeatedly to Leah.

Chapter Text

Eventually, Jim fell asleep on the biobed waiting for Leah McCoy to wake up. In fact she was the one waking up first.

“How are you feeling, Doctor?”

Leah noticed she was laying on a biobed and Christine Chapel stood next to her.

“Like hit by a sharship… What happened? Why…” She moaned annoyed. She started to remember. “Shit, they took me.”

“Yes. You wanted to get something from you office and didn’t come back. You were suddenly gone.”

Leah huffed and sat up. She took a look around and saw Jim.

Christine smiled when she noticed. “He’s fine. Everything worked and he got you out of there.”

Leah suppressed a sigh. It was a little fuzzy, but she remembered. And she suspected Jim would make some puns about the recue in the following days. “Did they… do something to me?”

“We don’t think so. No injuries or severed bones. Doctor M’Benga checked for the known things they did to other crew members. We think they didn’t have enough time to start what they were up to.”

Leah slowly nodded, but couldn’t shake off a strange feeling she had. She just wasn’t sure if it was her gut telling her that something was off – or if she simply was feeling the aftermath of being drugged.

Christine gave her a knowing glance. “You want a further examination, don’t you?”

The doctor exhaled heavily. “It took us a while to even notice they were abducting people. And we don’t know how fast they are in doing what they’re doing or what their intentions are. I just… have a weird feeling. I don’t wanna miss something. What if they did something else? Something they didn’t do to the others?”

The nurse wanted to contradict that, but she had to admit there was a possibility. “We can’t exclude that…” she reluctantly said. “But wouldn’t you feel sick or be in pain, if they did something?”

“We don’t know what they intended with their experiments. We interrupted their nice little plan. We can’t know if they just give up or if they try to open another door and pick up where we stopped them.” Leah noticed getting in rage and took a deep breath. She felt like crap and had the urge to go back to sleep. “We’re doing a full physical.”

“Your last one was only a month ago.”

Leah shrugged. “All the better. So any possible change will be crystal clear.”

Christine nodded. “Now or tomorrow?”

Leah hesitated. “Maybe after a few hours of sleep. I’m fucking tired. Do we know what kind of drugs they used? Nasty stuff.”

“Doctor M’Benga is analyzing a blood sample as we speak.”

Leah nodded and laid back down. She glanced to Jim. “He’s just asleep, right? Not drugged by them?”

“Yes, just asleep. He wanted to wait for you to wake up.”

Leah unwillingly smiled. “Get him a blanket, will you?”

Christine suppressed a grin. “Sure.”

Leah noticed her expression, but was too tired to put up with it. “And one for me, too.”

The nurse walked away with a smile.

The CMO closed her eyes and was almost instantly asleep.

 

***

 

Leah woke up early. She felt better. And she saw Jim was still on the biobed. She got up, took a shower in Medbay’s shower and put on a fresh uniform dress she was keeping in her office.

She got some coffee and requested a second cup from the replicator. She went to still sleeping Jim and held the cup so he could smell it.

And he did. He slowly stirred and opened his eyes. After a short moment of confusion he grinned. “Wow, breakfast in bed. We should do that more often, Bones”, he teased.

She rolled her eyes, put the cup next to the bed and wordlessly went away.

Jim sat up and swung his legs over the edge of the biobed. “But we need to talk about those beds. Not comfy”, he added cockily.

“So don’t fall asleep in Medbay”, Leah dryly commented from the other side of Medbay where she picked up a PADD. “And get out. Alpha shift’s starting soon.”

He took a sip of the coffee. “Thanks”, he said quietly in a soft voice when she walked past him. He rested the teasing for now.

Leah stopped and turned to him. “Thanks for getting me out of there”, she almost whispered.

Jim smiled. “Any time. Are you alright?”

“I guess. We’ll do a full physical to be on the safe side.” She noticed his slight startle at that word and added: “No, you’re off the hook.”

“Good, you know how I hate those things”, he replied. And before he could stop himself he continued: “You’re the only thing I like about Medbay.”

A lot of feisty, snappy answers went through Leah’s mind, but she decided to let it go this time. “Go”, she said instead. “You have fifteen minutes until Alpha Shift.”

Jim quickly put the cup on the next best drawer. “Keep me in the loop? I wanna know if everything’s really alright.”

She nodded and watched him rush out. She picked up the cup in order to bring it back to the replicator, but froze for a moment when she noticed how Christine was looking at her. “What?”

The nurse tried to show her a neutral expression. “Nothing.”

“Isn’t your shift over, Christine?”

“Since yesterday evening actually, but I wanted to stay for you and the captain.”

Leah blinked surprised and felt touched. “Thank you…” she replied softy. “You should go and sleep now.”

Christine shook her head. “First I’ll assist Doctor M’Benga with your physical.”

“Isn’t he off? And shouldn’t Everley start his shift now?”

“Yes. But do you want him to the physical or Doctor M’Benga?”

“Get M’Benga”, Leah quickly replied.

With a nod Christine headed towards the lab where he was.

 

***

 

Two thirds of the physical were without any surprises. Then some crew members came in with minor burns from a little accident in Engineering.

Leah made M’Benga treat the injured and postpone the rest of the physical. She helped, of course.

In the meantime the computer ran the blood samples on anything possible and Leah decided to catch up on some paperwork after she was done, but M’Benga was still treating a lieutenant.

A few minutes later Christine Chapel came to her office. She carried a PADD.

“Still here?” Leah asked softly.

The nurse smiled. “I’ve had worse shifts in school.”

Leah chuckled. “I know what you mean.”

Christine nodded and her expression got serious. “I have the blood results”, she said, raising the PADD a little.

The doctor got up from behind her desk and joined the nurse in the middle of the room. “That bad?” she commented on her seriousness.

Christine sighed. “Depends…”

Leah frowned. “On what?”

Christine whimpered a little, not sure what to say. “Just… take a look”, she gestured and left the office, giving the doctor some privacy.

With a strange feeling Leah activated the PADD and glanced over the numbers. Most of them looked perfectly fine. But one made her suddenly pale. She startled and her eyes flew to her name on top of the file, making sure this really was her bloodwork.

It was.

And her face became as white as a sheet.

She stepped outside into the main room of Medbay, looking around for Christine Chapel. She saw her, but didn’t walk further. Slowly, she sat down on the edge of the nearest biobed and took a few deep breaths.

Christine saw and returned to her a few moments later, handing the doctor a glass of water.

Leah laid the PADD on the biobed and took the glass, but held it first for a few moments before taking a sip. “But I can’t be pregnant…” she finally whispered.

The nurse grabbed a medical tricorder from a drawer and scanned the doctor. She held the device so Leah could see the display.

“Shit…” Leah closed her eyes. “What did those people do to me?”

Christine sat down next to her and put a hand on her shoulder, gently rubbing soothing circles.

“Why this? Why couldn’t they just sever and reattach an arm? A baby… That’s…” She gasped and felt sick. “Oh God, a half alien baby…”

“Oh, no, no, no”, Christine quickly said and showed her the tricorder again. “Look – all human DNA.”

It took Leah a few moments to grasp the words. She grabbed the tricorder and looked at the readings.

“That’s something… right?” Christine carefully asked, not knowing what else to say.

“I can’t be pregnant. Not like this. Maybe not ever. I’m not mother material… And who…”

Leah interrupted herself, typing something on the tricorder and sending its data to the screen next to the biobed. Then she stood up and continued typing one-handed on the medical console while she still held the tricorder. She accessed the crew database.

Christine watched silently how the doctor started a DNA comparison.

Both women watched the file appearing on the screen only moments later: James Tiberius Kirk.

A stunned “Oh” slipped off Christine’s lips.

Leah felt her stomach doing a flip. The tricorder fell out of her hand.

 

***

Chapter Text

“Chapel to Kirk.”

Jim looked up surprised and touched a button on the armrest of the command chair. The nurse never called the bridge. “This is Kirk. Everything alright down there?”

“No, not really. Could you come to Medbay? It’s about Doctor McCoy. She’s… uhm… she’s pretty shaken up about some news. I don’t know what to do.”

A wave of worry washed over Jim and he got up. “On my way. Spock, you’ve got the conn.”

The Vulcan nodded and took the chair while the captain hurried out.

With fast steps Jim walked through the corridors, paced in the turbo lift and walked quickly again. Christine Chapel sounded really concerned. That made him worried.

The nurse was already awaiting him when Jim entered Medbay.

“Where is she? What happened? The physical brought something up, didn’t it?”

Christine placed a hand on his right upper arm in order to keep him calm. “She’s in her office. She should tell you herself.” The nurse gestured towards the CMO’s office. “She locked the door, but only with her personal code. You know that one, right?”

He nodded.

She nodded back and slowly walked away.

Jim suddenly got a strange feeling. He went to the door and keyed in the code he knew. The doors parted for him and he startled seeing Leah on the couch, knees pulled against her chest and her arms around them. She looked like she had cried before. Now she was sobbing a little in silence.

The captain stepped inside and the doors closed behind him. For a moment he hesitated, then he sat down next to her.

Leah looked at him, but lowered her gaze.

“Bones?” He reached out, touching her hands with his.

She sobbed a little louder, but allowed him the touch.

“What happened?”

“The aliens…” she whispered, but trailed off.

“Did they do something to you? Did they sever something or take something from you?” He felt anger rising.

“They didn’t exactly hurt me… But…” Leah took a deep breath and let go of her legs. She ran her hands over her face, getting rid of the last tears. She shifted a little, so her legs were tucked half under her thighs.

Jim just looked at her. He wanted to ask again, but something told him he needed to be patient and let her talk on her own.

She fiddled with her hands on her upper thigh, looking at her fingers, but not at him. “Initially, there was no trace of them doing something invasive to me. Like to you or the others… But…” She exhaled sharply. “I wanted a full physical to be on the safe side. Then my bloodwork came back… Most numbers were okay, but… not the HGC levels…” The last words were only a whisper.

Jim blinked. HGC levels. He was no doctor, but his eyes got a little wider. If that was what he thought it was…

“They got me pregnant…” Leah added barely audible, confirming his notion.

He unwillingly held his breath, another wave of anger rising. “They did what?” he replied silently, but sharply.

“I’m pregnant.” Now Leah looked up for the first time, showing him her swollen eyes. “No…” She shook her head. “Not by one of them. They took the DNA from someone in the crew… The embryo is fully human…”

A lot of things went through Jim’s mind. He wanted to scream and yell and open that rift again in order to find the aliens responsible for this and give them hell.

But he stayed silent. He knew Leah was probably as angry as he was. Well, even more, he guessed. But her shock was stronger for the moment. She just sat there. He didn’t want to upset her more.

But there was one question the captain needed to ask desperately. He needed to know… “Did you find out… Do you know who the biological father is?” he whispered carefully.

Leah nodded. “Yeah…”

“Someone who was also abducted, right?”

Jim already knew the answer. There were about twenty men who could be the father. Including him. His heart pounded against his chest. He didn’t know if he wanted to hear his name. Or not. He felt a little dizzy.

“Yes…” She locked her eyes with his for the first time he entered her office. Her lips parted for the words, but somehow she wasn’t able to spell them out.

Jim placed his hands around hers. “I’m sorry, I never saw you under shock like this… Tell me what I can do. I wanna help you.”

Leah fought starting to shiver. She closed her eyes for a moment, telling herself just to say the words. She instantly brushed aside the thought of waiting to tell that information a few days until she could wrap her head around this whole mess. She wanted to everything she knew.

She felt his hands around hers and that actually gave her the strength she needed.

At the same time she feared what he would say…

“It’s yours…” Leah whispered, slowly looking into his eyes again and watching how the meaning sunk in. She held her breath for a moment.

“Mine…”

It was bad, but Jim felt relieved. He even felt a flash of happiness. Which was also bad considering the terrible situation.

He suppressed it and settled for relieved that it wasn’t some random crewmember. A lot of questions flooded his mind and it wasn’t easy to hold them back and simply wait for her to continue talking.

Leah nodded, chewing on her bottom lip. “This is so…” She pulled her hands out of his and made a helpless gesture.

Silence. She didn’t know what to say. He didn’t want to say something wrong.

“If I ever see one of those aliens again…” Leah finally cursed.

That made Jim chuckle a little. Finally a part of the Leah McCoy he knew very well. A good sign.

Now he dared to ask the most important question. Carefully of course. “What do you wanna do?”

The doctor took a deep breath and was more comfortable again, looking at him. “I have absolutely no idea…” She sighed. “I mean, I just found out half an hour ago. I want to yell and scream and open that portal again. I want to know why they did it. How they did it. If they even know what they did to us. I have no idea how they reproduce. Did they wanna see if it was for us similar as for them? Or did they think it would be fun to knock up some human as an experiment?”

She snorted and Jim had to suppress a laugh at the starting McCoy-rant. Yeah, she was back.

“They can’t have something like an Hippocratic oath though”, she went on. “Otherwise they wouldn’t have done. This is unbelievable. Who runs around and creates life just as an experiment? We’re not animals. We’re no guinea pigs. If I ever meet one of them again, I will put my oath aside. No intelligent life form should risk the life of another just out of medical curiosity!”

She was getting redder and more agitated. Which couldn’t be good for her. Or the baby. No matter what she would decide.

So, Jim reached out and gently pulled her in his arms.

Leah was about to protest, but finally relaxed against him. She started to shiver, but it slowly stopped when he drew soothing circles on her back.

“You’ll figure it out… We will figure it out”, he said in a calming voice, despite feeling as angry as she was and feeling somehow confused about everything. “And no matter what you decide, I’ll be here for you.”

Leah blinked surprised and pulled back, looking at him again. She was stunned. She knew he had it in him, but mostly, he showed his serious-responsible side as captain. In private he often behaved like a teenager.

“Perhaps –“

A beep of the com interrupted Leah. “Chapel to McCoy.”

Leah got up and touched a button on her desk. “This is McCoy.”

“I’m sorry, Doctor. We need you out here. Merryweather came in with an injury, but suddenly he seems to be allergic to the pain meds. Maybe because of his abduction. Perhaps something we overlooked. We don’t know.”

“I’ll be there in a sec.” Leah ended the connection and looked to Jim. “I need a little time to process this and think about what I want to do. Maybe we can talk tomorrow? … You should also think about what you want.”

Jim slowly nodded and watched her walk out quickly.

 

***

Chapter Text

Concentrating on work wasn’t easy for Leah. She barely managed to not think about the pregnancy while treating Ensign Merryweather. She felt like in a haze and was glad when she could return into her office.

She wanted to have further scans of the embryo and to complete the physical, but needed a little time to herself first.

She took the PADD with her medical file and studied the data about the pregnancy she got so far.

The existing bloodwork and scans told her that the embryo showed the development of a conception two weeks ago and everything was perfect for that time span.

The doctor realized that the conception must have been on the first or second time they took her. Well, if that word even applied. She really felt like a lab rat.

She sighed and closed her eyes for a few moments.

A baby.

Could she really have a baby? Raise a child?

Leah never imagined herself as a mother. She liked children, but while being married the timing hadn’t been right for her. That had been one of the reasons why the marriage failed.

And now some unknown alien intruders just wanted to force motherhood on her. She knew very well that she could simply have an abortion and go back to normal. Ironically, everything inside her screamed at that thought.

Leah laid the PADD aside and placed her right hand on her belly. The embryo was about two millimeters small. Barely nothing – and yet new life. A part of her and… Jim.

She quickly blinked, trying to avoid getting tears in her eyes.

She failed.

Jim…

Her stomach did a flip.

It was completely crazy, but it felt… right that the child was his. That was the only good thing in this mess.

Leah realized three things: She would have that child – given there would be no miscarriage. She would have decided to keep the baby in any case. But she would have probably panicked if the other half of the embryo’s DNA would have come from some random crew member.

Which lead to Leah admitting something to herself she tried to ignore for years: She was in love with Jim Kirk.

“Damn…” she whispered.

Allowing those feelings made things complicated and easier at the same time. She knew there was a pretty good chance he loved her back. She remembered how he’d looked at her in the alien lab.

But she wondered, if he was ready for that and if that could even work.

Forced parenthood wasn’t a good foundation for a relationship and for starting a family. Also, Leah realized that she had no idea if Jim wanted to have children – no matter his promise to support her decision.

So… what now?

Leah kicked the PADD off the couch and laid down on her side. She felt exhausted and was afraid starting to cry again.

She just closed her eyes and tried to think about nothing for a while.

 

***

 

Jim’s steps got slower and slower. He walked from Medbay to the turbolift, but when he was inside he didn’t give any command.

He just stared at the door, trying to grasp what had happened.

The captain replayed the conversation with Leah McCoy in his mind. She was pregnant with his child.

He was under shock and yet he caught himself suddenly smiling. He instantly shook it off, because it felt inappropriate.

He ran his hands over his face.

Something like this happening was completely insane. Aliens experimenting with humans and causing a pregnancy? He wondered if the brass was going to believe this. Aliens from subspace abducting crewmember was already crazy enough.

A beep tore him out of his thoughts. It was the computer indicating that no destination was chosen.

“Bridge”, he quietly said.

The turbolift activated and Jim exhaled heavily.

Jim wanted badly to know how Leah was going to decide. He was nervous. But he knew that would take days, maybe weeks. She never made important decisions lightly or quickly.

Unless… Well, this might be the exception. A forced pregnancy was unimaginable.

He felt furious, because the intruders did that to her. To them.

At the same time he was sad. He feared she would not want the baby and he realized once more that he was all but adverse to the thought of having a child with her.

He flinched and scolded himself for thinking like that. He just wasn’t able to stop himself. Something deep inside him stirred. A longing for family… and the hope he and Leah could maybe more than friends.

He remembered seeing her on that biobed in subspace. He still got shivers and felt the fear of not being able to save her that he’d had in that moment.

Jim also recalled her words – that he should think about what he wanted.

He sighed heavily.

Could he tell her what he wanted? And was what he was thinking right now what he would want in one day, one week or one month?

He believed so. But he was too confused right now to be sure.

Suddenly the turbolift stopped and the doors opened.

The captain saw the bridge. The lights were bright as always, many people talked and walked around. After a moment of hesitation he stepped outside the turbolift.

He noticed that Spock turned in the command chair and was ready to give him back the conn.

But Jim gestured him to keep sitting. “I’ll be in my ready room”, he told Spock and turned into the proclaimed direction.

Behind the closed door he froze on the spot for a moment. He looked around, but knew he could not concentrate, if he sat down at his desk and tried to do some paperwork.

So he walked to the couch and sat down.

Jim didn’t know how much time had passed, when a beep announced a visitor.

“Come.”

Nyota Uhura stepped inside and stopped in the middle of the room. She was carrying a PADD. “Captain, are you alright? You look a little pale”, she said worried.

He almost smiled at her observance. He gestured her to sit down in a chair opposite from the couch. “Long day”, he replied a little evasive.

“It’s only noon”, she softly answered.

Jim slowly nodded. “It’s complicated...” He sighed. “What brings you here?”

The lieutenant handed him the PADD. “I worked on the data you brought from subspace. Well, on the language in order to translate it.”

Now she had his full attention.

“Could you translate it?”

She weighed her head. “Parts of it.” She pointed to the PADD. “The computer couldn’t fully decipher their language.”

He activated the PADD and saw the alien files with pop-ups showing possible translations. He read them, while Uhura explained further.

“As far as I understand it… they learned about our plain of existence from Scotty’s modifications. They got curious. Apparently they never encountered a species like ours and it seems that their way of getting to know new worlds is… well… invasive… to put it carefully. I suspect they don’t respect other species like we do. They explore by doing experiments.”

Jim made a sound of disgust.

Nyota just nodded. “I think there is some kind of list they work through at every first contact. They do a certain amount as well as certain kinds of experiments to get all they want to know about a species. If the translation is correct, we are lucky they didn’t reach the part with possible causes of death yet. They were just getting started. It would have gotten worse over the next months.”

“They really don’t care about the damage they’re causing, don’t they?”

“No…”

Jim slowly nodded. “How…” He took a deep breath. “How detailed are the translations of the things they already did to the crew?” He wanted to know about him and Leah. The only problem with that was that he needed to tell Nyota what was going on. If she didn’t already know.

“We could only translate parts of it. It looks like they’re always taking the strongest first. That… uh… I…”

Jim was not overly surprised that she suddenly hesitated. So she knew something.

“I’m sorry, Captain. It’s not easy to say this.” She took a deep breath. “You might wanna scroll down a little. Apparently you were the first they took, because you’re the leader – which classifies you as the strongest male. They… uhm… asserted that Doctor McCoy is the strongest woman on board. So they chose her as the first female crew member. In their protocol they have… uh… special plans for the ones sociology also refers to as the alpha male and alpha female.”

Jim took a deep breath and let it out slowly. He knew where this was going to. “It’s alright, Uhura. Bones found out today that they got her pregnant and that I’m the biological father.”

The lieutenant’s expression showed surprise as well as relieve. “I’m so sorry, Captain. It’s… unbelievable what they’re doing to innocent people.”

“That it is.” Jim exhaled sharply.

A moment of silence followed.

“Is there more?” he finally asked.

“As far as I understand, their experiments last six to twelve months. It depends on the number of… specimens and how long pregnancies take in the species they’re experimenting on. They monitor the stages of a pregnancy. They research procreation, life and death. I think they take the one they impregnate, keep her for a while and watch the birth. Near the end of their experiments they study the ways people can die.” She shook her head in disgust. “This is just so horrible.”

“Did they always get away with their doings?”

“I don’t know. All we got is the data about our crew and their masterplan.  We have nothing on how often or how successful they did this. But it appears that they have some experience.”

He nodded, but remained silent.

Nyota studied his face and body language. She saw how shaken he was. “If you wanna talk…” she carefully offered.

Jim showed her a small smile. “Thank you… I guess I could need someone… I’m just not sure if I’m ready to talk about it…”

The lieutenant gave him a compassionate smile and just waited a few moments, giving him time to gather his thoughts and talk – or ask her to leave.

“I think…” He began, but trailed off. “I fear… this will get really complicated…”

Nyota didn’t reply. She just listened for now.

Jim deactivated the PADD and put it on the couch table. “Bones is really shaken up. And I’m…” He sighed. “Shit… I’d like to find those bastards and give them hell… But I…” He shook his head. “Damn…”

Silence.

He closed his eyes for a moment. “It’s terrible… I sort of wish that Bones decides to keep the baby…” The last words were barely audible.

Nyota unwillingly cracked a little smile. “I would call it… natural… considering how close you are”, she whispered cautiously. “You’re right – this is an impossible situation. But I know how much Leah means to you and that you will do everything in your power to help her and be a good father.”

Jim only nodded. Words failed him right now. He even was afraid, he might starting to cry in front of Nyota.

“You love her, don’t you?”

His eyes widened.

Nyota smiled warmly. “Don’t answer. I already know.” She prepared to stand up. “I guess it is all too new and painful now. But… I believe Leah will have this baby.”

Jim watched her getting up and slowly walking to the door.

“Of course I’ll keep this conversation to myself and will handle that part of the data delicately in the report”, Uhura said, before he could ask her.

Jim was only able to nod gratefully.

A few minutes after she left, he finally went to his desk and tried doing some paperwork. He resisted the urge to call Leah.

Chapter Text

Jim suppressed the urge calling Leah during or after his shift and asking her if she wanted to grab dinner or watch a movie. He badly wanted to know how she was and, well, if she’d made a decision already. But he was afraid he would put too much pressure on her. It was probably to early anyway.

So he just walked back to his quarters.

He entered and froze on the spot when the doors closed behind him.

Leah was sitting on his couch, had a thin blanket around her belly and her kegs pulled up. In her hand was a glass cup with tea. Some movie he didn’t know was playing on the screen, but the volume was low. Leah didn’t seem to actively watch. It was more like something running in the background so the room wasn’t silent.

“Bones…”

She looked up. “Have you eaten?”

“No. Came here directly from the bridge.”

She pointed with a small gesture towards the table. “Only ate one of the sandwiches. Wanna have the other?”

Jim only saw by now the plate on the couch table. He slowly nodded, walked to her and sat down. “You okay?”

“Not really.” She took a sip of her tea, lowering her gaze.

“So… you’re here”, he slowly pointed out.

“I was going crazy. We completed the physical and I ran every test I could think of on me and the embryo. Then M’Benga and Christine ganged up on me and told me to cut my shift short. But in my quarter I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I walked around and… kind of ended up here… Sorry…”

“Don’t be.” Jim smiled warmly. He felt his heartbeat against his chest. “I’m actually glad you’re here.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah.” He took the tea cup from her and put it on the couch table.

Leah watched him curiously and skeptically. He smiled again and pulled her slowly into his arms. She let it happen and rested her head on his shoulder.

Jim took a deep breath. It could blow up in his face, but he couldn’t hold back anymore. He needed to get everything out in the open. “I hope you’re keeping it”, he whispered and kissed her hair.

Leah slowly lifted her head.

“I mean it”, he emphasized, replying to her stunned look. “You’d be a wonderful mother. I couldn’t imagine anyone else I rather wanted to have a child with. And I… I never really thought about children. You know how my childhood was. But when you told me you were pregnant… It felt so inappropriate and wrong, but I wished for the baby to be mine.”

Leah pulled back a little, trying to process his words. “Not more inappropriate than me being glad that it’s you and not some random crew member… God, I’ll be a terrible mother…” she said quietly. “I have no idea how to do this. I mean… a child is a big responsibility. Being there twentyfourseven, teaching them, raising them properly. And on a starship? Space is dangerous. Dear god, what will the brass say? A starship is no place for a child. Will they even let me stay? I’m going to have a panic attack every other day, probably daily until the birth. This is so crazy… I…” She trailed off, seeing Jim’s baffled expression. “You okay, Jim?”

“Bones…” He let out a short laugh of disbelieve. “Is this your way of telling me that you’re… we’re doing this? You decided to have the baby?”

She exhaled heavily and nodded slowly. “I guess I am… But I really have no idea how to do this. I feel like I’m freaking out.”

Jim suddenly grinned happily and pulled her in his arms again. “We’ll figure this out together.”

“I never thought about children”, she finally whispered. “That’s one of the reasons why…” She sighed.

“Yeah… you told that once. But I stand by my opinion – he is a moron for cheating on you and leaving you.”

That made her smile a little. She took a deep breath. “At least we won’t be the most uncommon kind of family. A few hundred years back everyone would have pointed at two friends having a baby together. Thank God that’s not the case anymore.”

She said the words even though she secretly wished it to be different.

Jim felt a little pinch in his stomach. He wondered if she really meant that or… He could slap himself, but ne needed to get everything out: “Right…” he said softly. “But…” He shifted and made her look at him. “…you know that I’m in love with you, right?”

Leah’s eyes widened and for a moment she forgot to breathe.

There it was. The answer to a question recently arisen in her, the confirmation of something a lot of people had said in the past years and the hope she kind of had for a while now becoming true. The surprising part was only he actually said the words.

“I know…” she finally whispered. “I’m just not sure where that leaves us.”

She really wasn’t. This was real life. No fairy tale in which the main characters fell into a kiss and lived happily ever after.

“Wherever you want us to be.”

Leah laughed. “When the hell did you get so mature?”

“I have my moments.” Jim smiled and winked.

She returned his smile and only noticed by now that she had a hand on her belly. “I’m not in my right mind today. I need to process this. I can’t… say anything right now…”

She sighed and leant in, brushing her lips gently with his.

Jim grinned. “For not speaking that’s saying quite a lot.” He slid a hand into her neck, pulling her into a short, but real kiss.

He kicked off his shoes and shifted with her into a more comfortable position on the couch. She rested her head against his chest.

“So, what’s the movie?”

“Something funny from the twenty-first century, I guess. I just requested a movie without a big romance or pregnancy in it.”

Jim laughed and managed to grab the PADD with the movie list. “Still going by that criteria?”

“Not necessarily”, she mumbled a little tiredly.

“Okay…” He scanned over the list and picked something different.

Leah laughed, when she heard the intro music.

Jim carefully angled for the plate with the sandwich. She snuggled against him and he smiled. She’d only done this on very rare occasions. But now, with everything changing and them becoming a family, there would probably be more situations like this.

He also knew they would probably get into a fight the next day and she would be yelling at him for something about a mission – or, for a change, about the pregnancy.

He grinned. He couldn’t wait.

They watched the movie, but Leah fell asleep halfway through it. When the movie ended, Jim contemplated what to do.

Jim gently brushed with his fingers over her cheek. “Bones?”

She stirred a little. “Wha’?”

He chuckled. “The movie’s over. Time to go to bed.”

“Mhhh… Just leave m’ here an’ get me a blanket. Don’t wanna move.”

He laughed again and got an idea. “Okay.” He gently shifted her, so he could stand up and lift her in his arms.

“What the…” Leah started protesting, but trailed off and just moaned tiredly, resting her head at his shoulder.

Jim carried her bridal style into the bedroom area and laid her down on the big king-sized bed. Fortunately, she already wore no shoes and was in comfortable clothes. He just had to get her under the blanket.

She snuggled into it and was asleep within seconds.

He smiled and kissed her forehead. Then he headed to the bathroom, changing out of his uniform.

A few minutes later he joined Leah in bed, wearing a pair of sweats and an old Academy shirt. He just looked at her for a while, before turning off the lights.

It took him a while to fall asleep. He was just too happy and made mental notes of everything that was to plan for the baby. And making sure those alien intruders could never meddle with them again.

Chapter Text

Leah slowly opened her eyes and noticed the darkness of space. She saw a window and the faint flow of the stars outside.

But the window was wrong. It wasn’t where it was supposed to be.

She slowly sat up, not sure if she was only a little confused.

Jim. Right. Her gaze fell upon him in the almost darkness. He was laying on his side, facing her.

Now she remembered that she was in his quarters and that he’d carried her to bed, because she’d been so tired.

Leah sighed.

She knew that she should probably get up and return to her own room. But she didn’t want to. She decided to go slow with this… well… relationship? But she assumed just sleeping in Jim’s bed wasn’t hurrying anything.

She studied his face and felt her stomach do a flip. She realized that – if she wanted to – she could have this every night.

That thought put a smile on her face.

But at the same time she felt afraid. Everything happened so fast. The order was wrong. And, once again, she wondered if she would be a good mother.

She put a hand on her belly.

Another thought took over: What if she lost the baby? She was only a few weeks along and there was a possibility of a miscarriage.

Leah sighed again and banished that fear. And it really was a fear. She was astonished how much she wanted this baby already.

She laid back down and faced Jim.

A thousand things and more went through her mind. There were so many things to talk about and to get sorted out. If she could stay on the Enterprise for one thing. And what and when to tell the brass and the crew. It horrified her a little. How that pregnancy came to be made her angry, furious even.

With another sigh she tried to shake it off. She slowly closed her eyes and tried to sleep again.

 

***

 

Jim woke up before Leah did. She was laying next to him on her side facing him. His heart skipped a beat seeing her so beautiful and relaxed. He smiled and reveled in watching her for a few moments before he took care of deactivating the alarm clock and left bed without waking her. He wanted to have her a little more rest.

Also, he hoped she wouldn’t get upset waking up in his bed. She seemed to be content, but one never knew with Leah McCoy.

He grinned at that thought. That was one thing he loved about her.

Jim almost couldn’t take his eyes off her. He wanted to wake her and talk about the baby. He wanted to know everything she knew until know. He wanted to see an ultrasound and make plans.

Reluctantly he headed to the bathroom and went into the shower.

When Leah finally woke up she heard the water running. She was a little disappointed that Jim was up. But – he was the captain. And a glance at the chronometer told her that he had to be on the bridge soon.

She rolled on her back and fought the urge to simply stay in bed. She also had to get to Alpha Shift.

Leah finally sat up and left the bed, pondering what to do now. She needed to return to her quarters, take a shower and put on a uniform.

Or…

She chewed on her bottom lip.

No, she couldn’t, could she?

But she decided to be bold and just do what went through her mind. So, she entered the bathroom and saw Jim’s silhouette through the milky glass of the shower.

Her heart beat a little fast and she felt crazy. But she started to undress anyway and walked naked to the shower door.

She gently knocked at the glass.

A startled Jim turned around.

Leah opened the door and stepped inside. “Hi.”

“Hi…” he replied, looking at her in awe.

To her surprise his eyes locked with hers. No trailing down.

He took a step aside so Leah could get under the water, too. She sighed contently, when the warmth met her skin.

Jim smiled, even grinned. He closed the distance to her and his glance asked for approval to kiss her.

Leah returned his smile and leant in.

Their lips met in a gentle kiss and he pulled her against him.

He felt the urge to move her against the wall and take her right here and now. But he restrained himself. This was too new, he didn’t want to rush here and there was no time right now anyway.

Leah melted against him. She felt his manhood reacting and was almost surprised that he didn’t make any advances and that his hands didn’t explore her body. Strangely, she wouldn’t have minded. She hadn’t planned on anything when stepping into the shower, but she realized that she was everything but adverse to having sex with him.

But the timing right now… And she only wanted to shower…

Jim moaned into the kiss when she moved gently against his cock.

In return he circled his hands over her back and moved one near the swell of her breasts. That earned him a pleased hum.

“Leah…” he whispered. It was kind of a question, asking her what she wanted to do now.

She sighed a little and moved her hands down his chest. She remembered telling him the evening before that she wasn’t in her right mind. “Still not sure if I’m in my right mind…” she whispered. “But I wanted to take a shower with you.”

“Only a shower?” Jim teased carefully with a grin.

She smiled and added a little eye rolling – just because this was what she did. “Initially…” she admitted. The thoughts that there wasn’t really time and that she should have know how this could turn out slowly faded…

Now he got bolder and moved both hands along her sides to her breasts, making her gasp in pleasure and waver a little bit. He kissed her neck and trailed his lips back to hers.

“If we didn’t have to get to Alpha shift I would probably move this to bed.” He winked. “And I think you wouldn’t mind.”

Leah gave him one of her usual glances. No, she wouldn’t. But, she was still herself. And pregnant.

He grinned. “God, I love you.”

She startled a little and didn’t even know why. He’d said it the night before. But now… here, naked with him in the shower… without ravishing each other, but being all intimate, it had so much more weight than the night before. “I love you, too”, she breathed back.

Jim kissed her again and mentally prepared for stopping this and getting ready for his shift. He didn’t want to, but he had to.

Leah however moved her right hand further south while still kissing him. She wondered, if this really was her, but she wanted to give him release, for his hardness was her fault. This wasn’t the time for sex – and she wasn’t sure if she was ready to sleep with him –, but why not give him a hand job? She certainly didn’t want him to have take care of this himself.

Jim moaned surprised when her hand touched his cock and started moving. Part of him wanted to protest. He’d also never imagined she would do this.

But her kiss was telling him everything he needed to know. She kissed him with more emotion that before – if that was even possible.

Jim allowed himself to fall against the wall for support and pulled her with him. “Leah…” he gasped between kisses, but wasn’t able to form a sentence or a coherent thought. He only knew that he probably never was goo like this with a woman in the shower. This was all because of her. He was in awe about how he reacted to her. And that thought he managed was the last before a powerful orgasm took over.

He came with a loud moan. His cum spilled over Leah’s hands and also landed on her skin. He breathed heavily and couldn’t not look at it while the water washed everything away.

His eyes went searching for her gaze and he found her blushing a little. He gently cupped her face with one hand and kissed her. No comment whatsoever. Words didn’t seem to fit right now. Well, except perhaps… “I love you so much.” He just didn’t dare to say how much he also loved the thought of her being pregnant with his child.

Leah smiled slightly, trying not to blush again.

Jim took the shower gel and started dispensing it on her skin. Not an easy task, because he didn’t allow himself to stray, to turn this into a sexual innuendo or to get hard again. But he already planned the evening. He couldn’t be sure, if she would agree, but after the last few minutes he was prepared to take the gamble and invite her over. He kind of hoped it would end in sex with him being able to show her how much he loved her. On the other hand, it didn’t matter – there was no rush. 

Ten minutes later he was putting on a uniform and she headed out to her quarters and.

Jim suppressed the urge from earlier to ask her about the baby and if he could join her later in Medbay to see the ultrasound.

 

***

 

Jim barely managed to stay an hour on the bridge. Since it was a quiet morning his mind had all the time in the universe to think about babies and stuff.

Finally, he left the command chair. “Spock, you’ve got the conn. I need to talk with Doctor McCoy about something.”

Spock nodded. “Yes, Captain.” He noticed something in Jim’s voice was different. The captain didn’t sound as neutral as he usually did, when he announce something like this. But the commander decided to ignore it. He assumed that it was related to the latest happenings.

Chapter Text

Leah kind of froze when she sat down at her desk in her office. It was going to be a slow day. So she had time to run some more tests and decide about a few things.

She just couldn’t decide where to start.

She wondered if she should talk to the brass right now… or first talk with Jim about it… or ask him to make the call together. She also considered not telling them for a few months.  But, of course, that wouldn’t work. She couldn’t leave something like a pregnancy out of her report and neither could anyone else. So, in a few hours, Starfleet Command would know about what had happened to her.

Leah sighed. “Dammit…”

Finally the doctor decided to postpone calling Earth and prepare another ultrasound she could show Jim later. Not that there was to see much yet.

The moment she stepped outside her office Jim entered Medbay. She blinked surprised.

“Hi”, he said with a smile.

“Hi”, she replied.

His smile turned into a grin. “I’m sorry, I couldn’t wait anymore. I don’t want to hurry you or put pressure on you… But since we didn’t talk much about how the baby is and… well, you know…”

Leah nodded with a slight smile and pointed to one of the private examination rooms.

Jim followed her. He just didn’t know where to stand when the door closed behind them.

Leah walked to a biobed and activated a bunch of devices. She sat down and gestured Jim to come to her. She adjusted a screen so Jim could watch the ultrasound scans the biobed was sending to it.

Jim’s eyes grew wide and his lips parted in awe when he saw the little smudge that was supposed to be an embryo.

“It’s really tiny. This is an augmentation”, Leah explained, even if it wasn’t necessary. She felt a little nervous and had a flutter in her stomach seeing him looking at the screen like that. “The embryo’s not even two millimeters. And no detectable heartbeat yet. We’ll have to wait a few weeks for that… But my hormone levels are typical for the early stages of a pregnancy.”

He just nodded, not able to take his eyes off the screen.

Leah’s lips formed a smile watching him like this. She felt a warm feeling spread through her body, accompanied by the realization that this was real. This was really happening. She knew, but it hit her once more. She supposed her mind was still processing what was happening.

“The embryo is healthy”, she continued after a few moments.

Jim didn’t manage to get out one word. He had so many questions, but didn’t know where to start.

“Even with our technology we can’t say really more in that early state of pregnancy than two hundred years ago”, Leah added. “We ran some tests on the fetus’ vitals and ran a physical on me. But I wanna recheck some things today. I wanna be one-hundred-twenty percent sure they didn’t mess any more with me or did something that could put the embryo at risk. Or meddle with the growth or something like that.”

He slowly nodded, turned to her and came closer. He cupped her face. “And how are you feeling, Bones?”

Leah chuckled. “Do you mean morning sickness?” She shook her head. “Nothing yet. But I now know that some stuff had to do with the pregnancy.”

Jim gave her a worried look.

She shook her head. “Nothing to worry about. I felt a little different and some tugging in my belly, like… well, like sometimes when I get my period. But different. It’s hard to explain… And I think I’m already getting tired faster. That will probably increase.”

He leant down and kissed her gently on the lips.

Leah smiled into the kiss and hummed contentedly.

“I still have to finish and send my report about the incident with the subspace intruders”, Jim quietly said.

Leah sighed and nodded. She knew exactly what he was getting at. It was a question what to put in. “We can’t hide my pregnancy or lie about it... As for the details…”

“Yeah…”

She shrugged. “I guess… it’s up to you…” she hesitantly said. “We can tell everything now. They will eventually ask about the biological father.”

“Okay… so… if it’s alright with you, I put it all in.”

Leah smiled warmly. “Of course, it is.” She felt her heart beating faster. “I… I’m just a little afraid about how they might react.”

“Well, I certainly won’t let them make to leave the ship, Bones”, he stated as if it was the most natural and obvious thing. “They’ll have to deal with a pregnant CMO and that the flag ship will have a child on board.”

She laughed. “And you think it will be that easy?”

Jim shrugged and his face got dead serious. “If they want me to stay captain of the Enterprise – yes.”

“What?” she breathed, showing a shocked expression. “Jim.”

“If they want you to go, I’ll go with you.”

“Jim…” Leah repeated, but trailed off, searching for words. She blinked quickly, afraid she would start to cry.

And for a moment she feared he would bring up marriage. Well, no, fear wasn’t the right word. But she knew that if there was a wedding in their future - that it must not be a tool for her to stay on the ship.

But the captain just pulled her close and kissed her hair. “We always were a package deal, Bones. Now more than ever.”

They stayed like this for a few minutes. With one hand Jim drew soothing circles on her back.

“I guess, I should write my report then…” Leah finally whispered. “With all details and the request to remain on the Enterprise.”

She pulled away, got up and went to a drawer. She took a small PADD, activated it and typed something. Then she handed it to Jim.

He gave her a curious look.

“Ultrasound videos and a few stills. Not much to see. Barely the size of a poppy seed… But…”

Jim smiled, then grinned happily.

Leah rolled her eyes. “Just… don’t parade around with it.”

He nodded. “We’re telling everyone when you want to.” He leant in for a kiss.

Leah responded to his lips, but pushed him away playfully a moment later. “And now go, Jim. I have to shock the brass.”

For a moment she pictured Admiral Barnett or Pike falling off a chair. She suppressed a grin. Maybe there was some fun in this. After all, her being pregnant by Jim Kirk was probably about the last thing everyone expected.

“Wanna have dinner tonight, Bones?” Jim asked halfway to the door.

“Mess hall?”

“My quarters. We can talk about… stuff.”

She chuckled and raised an eyebrow. “Just talk?” she teased him.

He wasn’t very successful in hiding a slight grin. “Well…”

Leah was tempted letting him hang for a while. But there was no point in it. Certainly not after what she’d done in the shower. Part of her was afraid moving too fast, but the other part of her wanted to get all in. Maybe that was something for the list of things to talk about in the evening. As for everything else…

“Dinner. And then we’ll see”, she finally replied.

She wanted to sleep with him, but wasn’t sure if she was ready. She didn’t wanna do it just to catch up with the order of things in this relationship.

“I’ll be there at eight”, she added and gestured him to leave.

The doctor watched him go and didn’t even bother to go back to her office. The screen with the ultrasound attracted her attention. She stared at the little dot that would develop into human being.

“Doctor McCoy?”

Leah startled a little and turned around. Christine Chapel was standing in the open doorway.

“I’m sorry, Doctor. I wanted to ask you something about the stocktaking. I can come back later…”

“No, no, it’s alright, Christine.”

The nurse approached and her lips cracked into a slight grin. “So… I saw the captain being in here with you…”

Leah crossed her arms and tilted her head. “Is there a question in there?”

“So, uhm, you and him?”

“Maybe”, Leah answered evasive. She wasn’t ready to admit a yes.

Christine smiled knowingly. “Okay…”

“So, what do you wanna know about the stocktaking, Christine?”

“Well… uhm… we are mostly well equipped with to usual stuff. I already drew up a list of supplies for Starfleet Medical. But I don’t know what to order in the child sector… Uhm, we have the stuff we need in case we encounter pregnant women and children on a mission. But in case…”

“I see…” Leah slowly nodded. Medbay didn’t have all the devices and medication for the whole duration of a pregnancy or a baby living on the ship.

“I could wait with the ordering or add something later”, Christine suggested.

Leah was about to say they could do the latter, but decided to be bold and straight forward with this. “Add everything we need for my pregnancy to the list, but wait two days. The reports should get to Earth first. The brass should know what this is about.”

Christine blinked surprised. Her lips parted, but she needed a moment to form words. “You… Really?”

The doctor smiled. “We’re doing this. Jim and I”, she said quietly. “No idea how… But we’ll figure it out.”

Now the nurse grinned from ear to ear.

“But no telling anyone yet, Christine”, Leah quickly added. “One step at a time. The embryo is only a few weeks along and there are still some risks. Also, Jim and I need time to adjust to the situation…” – she avoided the word relationship –  “…before the crew learns about this. And we need to inform the brass.” She sighed loudly. “God, I have to write that dammed report now”, she moaned. She dreaded putting what happened into words.

“Could Doctor M’Benga do it?”

Leah shook her head. “It has to come from me for different reasons.” With another sigh she headed towards the door. “I better start…”

Chapter Text

Writing the report was torture.

Leah decided to put everything in she remembered. It wasn’t that much, but it took her longer to complete the report as usual.

Also, she revised the part about the pregnancy again and again.

In the end Leah still wasn’t content with the words, but saved, closed and sent the report anyway. Postponing or rewriting again wouldn’t do her any good, she figured. She just wanted to get it over with.

She texted Jim on her communicator that her report was on its way. He replied that he’d also sent his.

With a flutter in her stomach Leah returned to the main room of Medbay and started her work.

But she didn’t get very far.

“Uhura to McCoy.”

Leah blinked surprised. She hesitated a moment to open a com connection at the nearest computer terminal. This couldn’t be, could it?

“McCoy here.”

“I have Admiral Pike for you.”

Leah’s eyes widened.

Shit.

She checked the time and realized that it had been only an hour since she’d sent the report.

“Put him through to my office.”

“Yes, Doctor. Uhura out.”

Leah sighed and walked into the next room. She locked the door with her code, even though she knew no one would enter without using the chime.

She sat down and activated the screen on her desk and the connection. “Admiral Pike”, she greeted him.

“Leah”, he replied informally.

A moment of silence followed.

“So?” she finally asked, almost a little impatient.

He chuckled. “It was a quite interesting report. Both of them.”

She huffed a little. “Yeah, well, I figured as much, when you’re calling that fast. Did you only read mine or Jim’s too? You’re a fast reader, aren’t you?”

“I got Jim’s report a few minutes earlier and read it first. I actually had to re-read both to be sure I wasn’t hallucinating.”

She sighed. “I checked the lab results three times…” she mumbled. “And later two more times… I still need to wrap my head around this.”

The admiral raised his eyebrows. “So there is a this?”

Leah realized that the conclusion of her report might have been a little vague. She just didn’t know what Jim’s report was saying. And for some reason she was suddenly at a loss for words.

Pike slowly nodded and showed a small smile. “Don’t worry, I know. I’m surprised you didn’t demand to remain on the Enterprise. You’re choice of words was unusually… moderate.”

She rolled her eyes. “Well, it was supposed to be a report, not a negotiation”, she replied, sounding a little snappy. She was getting impatient learning what the admiral was getting at with this call.

He laughed. “You should explain that to Jim. Although – I wouldn’t call the last paragraph of his report exactly a negotiation…” he remarked dryly.

Leah groaned. She recalled the conversation with Jim Kirk. But she hadn’t expected him to blurt it straight out without knowing if the brass was even going to oppose her staying on the Enterprise. She murmured something that contained the word moron.

Pike laughed again.

“I’m sorry, Admiral”, she finally said with a sigh. “I don’t know what he wrote, but he shouldn’t have been that straight forward.”

“Oh, it was quite refreshing and very colorful. Well, as the entire report. That’s some crazy shit…”

She just nodded, sighing again heavily.

“I don’t know if I should tell you that I’m sorry or congratulate you on the pregnancy, Leah.”

The doctor shrugged her shoulders. “I don’t even know myself… Maybe both. In that order.”

A grin appeared on his lips. “Well, we have to talk about a lot of things. And I want the Enterprise back on Earth for a debrief ASAP…”

Leah startled and her eyes widened.

“… but as for now I have only one question.”

He paused and she surveyed his expression skeptically.

“Okay…” Leah drawled quietly.

“Are you moving in with Jim or is he going to live with you?”

Leah’s lips parted in shock. Those were about the last words she’d expected in this moment.

“Oh, my bad”, he added with a chuckle, “you haven’t decided yet.”

“Not even talked about it yet”, she corrected him with a horrified tone.

Well – it sounded worse than it was. Strangely, she felt relieved. Still shocked, but really relieved. That kind of inappropriate question meant she would be allowed to stay.

Didn’t it?

“Does that mean Starfleet Command will let me stay on the Enterprise and keep the position of CMO?” she asked just to be sure.

“I can’t speak for Starfleet Command. But I would. And I can’t imagine anyone in his right mind even trying to get you off this ship and raising Kirk’s wrath as well as yours.” Another grin appeared. “And let’s face it, Leah. Everyone knew, the two of you would end up together.”

Leah choked on her own breath. “Excuse me?” She wondered how read she was by now. “Until yesterday Jim and I were only best friends. Then this whole mess happened… And I decided to keep this baby… And we talked…” she started to ramble very fast. “…I mean I knew what he was going to say and I feel the same, but this is very messed up and we need to figure out where to go from here… and… uh…” She lost her track of thoughts. Her cheeks felt all hot and she just made a helpless gesture.

Pike laughed again. “I’m sorry, but you’re adorable. I knew how mad and bossy you can get, but I didn’t know you could be like… this…” He gestured with another laugh.

Leah rolled her eyes. “I cut simply cut the connection, Chris”, she threatened with a glare, using his first name now.

“And there you are again”, he replied dryly.

She huffed. “Any questions I can actually answer?”

“I guess not. At least not now. Just wanted to let you know that I am on your side. We can talk some more when you’re on Earth. I suppose I won’t be the only one with questions, Leah.”

“And the figurative needles”, she added knowingly. “That’s it, right? Starfleet Medical also got the report and is already champing at the bit.”

“Sort of. I always thought I was reading new reports fast. But obviously someone over there is bored and even faster.”

“Does Jim already know?”

“I wanted to talk to you first.”

“Talk to him, Chris. It’s a miracle that he isn’t already at the door, wanting to talk to you.”

The admiral chuckled. “Okay, I will. And remember - Medical wants you to be back here ASAP.”

“Oh joy”, Leah murmured sarcastically.

Pike showed her a warm smile. “By the way – I would suggest you move in with him. The captain’s got the bigger quarters.”

Leah just rolled her eyes again. “I’m referring the call back to bridge. Admiral.”

And without another word or a goodbye she did exactly that. Then she fell back in her chair, trying to process what just had happened.

She let out a short laugh. “Unbelievable…”

 

***

 

Leah gave Pike ten minutes. She figured that was the amount of time the admiral would need to ask to be put through to the ready room and Jim going there and talking to him.

So, she left Medbay and headed for the bridge. She knew Jim would probably come to her, but she wanted to get out for a while anyway.

She used the turbolift so she wouldn’t have to cross the entire bridge and would only be seen by a few officers. She just walked to the door of the ready room, typed in a medical override and stepped in.

Jim looked up surprised.

Leah heard a chuckle from the screen and Pike’s voice. “Ah, Doctor McCoy must have arrived. See you soon, Jim.”

A beep signaled that the connection had ended.

“Did he…” Jim started, but trailed off, when Leah nodded. He grinned.

“But don’t you dare starting big plans or something, Jim”, she said. “It’s way too early for that. The brass has still to decide. And we need to wait and see how pregnancy goes.”

He looked as if he wanted to protest. But he finally sighed a little. “Okay…” He got up from behind his desk and slowly walked towards her. “And… what about us… Bones?” he whispered, cupping her face with one hand and sliding the other around her waist.

“That’s our topic for dinner.”

“Can I get a little appetizer?” he teased her and leant in for a kiss.

Leah attempted to huff at his cockiness, but the touch of his lips on hers cut it off. She relaxed against him and even deepened the kiss. She moved her hands over the fabric of his uniform shirt to his neck.

They kissed. And kissed. And kissed. Until they finally had to come up for air.

“I should get back to work…” Leah whispered a little breathless.

Jim laughed. “Why did you come here in the first place?”

She punched him playfully against the chest. “Maybe to keep you from doing something impulsive and stupid out of joy”, she replied and realized it now. “Like making an announcement or handing Scotty some crazy task about one of our quarters.”

“I wouldn’t have…” He tilted his head. “Yeah, okay, I probably would have.”

“But you can task him with making two-hundred percent sure that we never see those aliens again.”

“He’s already on that”, he grinned, followed by another kiss.

“I’ll go now”, Leah announced and turned. “And you will wait at least five minutes before going out there.”

“What? Why?”

She looked to him quickly while walking. “Because you’re way too cheery now for giving orders to set course to Earth, Jim. Everyone will be suspicious about what’s going on.”

She left and the door closed behind her.

Jim grinned again. She knew him too well. So he did some paperwork that took care of his good mood.

Half an hour later he returned to the bridge and gave order for their new heading.

Chapter Text

Leah McCoy wasn’t sure if it was chance or if knowing about the pregnancy made a difference – but she felt a little nauseous and skipped lunch.

Well, until Christine noticed and made her eat something.

The doctor spent the rest of her shift reading about the first trimester of pregnancy and refreshing her medical memory about it. She considered calling her mother, but decided against it. Way too early and way too risky – Eleonora McCoy would call her twice a day if she knew she was going to be a grandmother.

Finally, Leah cut her shift short and packed a bag in her quarters. She assumed she would spend more than just one night there, so she used a big bag. She dreaded a little being seen by crewmembers on her way to the captain’s quarters. But she decided to simply ignore everyone she would meet.

She looked around and remembered Christopher Pike’s words. She almost automatically rolled her eyes. But… the admiral was right. It was too early to tell where this relationship was going... but what about the living arrangement when the baby was born? Granted, the Enterprise was big, but not huge. A few decks away from each other were more than manageable. But Jim wanted this. And Leah was glad about it. She just hoped that wouldn’t change. She didn’t expect them to become a perfect family. She didn’t even expect living together…

But… well… she kind of liked the thought. For herself as well as for the child.

Leah sighed and shook her head. Enough of those thoughts. One step at a time.

She grabbed her bag and headed for the captain’s quarters. The crewmen she encountered were too busy talking to each other to notice or wonder about the CMO walking around in off duty clothes and with luggage.

She let herself into Jim’s quarters like the night before.

It was weird – she felt at home. She got goosebumps and a flutter in her stomach when she realized that.

Slowly, Leah put the bag on the couch and pondered what to do. She felt hungry, but didn’t want to eat without Jim.

Her gaze wandered to the bag. She grabbed it and took it to the bedroom area. She put the bag on the bed and opened a drawer. She rearranged the underwear inside in order to make some space for her own.

When she was done with putting her things inside, she moved on the wardrobe and hung two of her blue uniform dresses next to Jim’s golden uniform shirts. She also found space in another drawer for some off-duty clothes.

“That’s kind of hot.”

Leah startled, turned around and cursed. “Dammit, Jim. Do you have to scare me like that?!”

Jim laughed. He was leaning against the arch to the bedroom area. “Stealth training finally pays up.”

She rolled her eyes.

He strolled closer, eying the open wardrobe door showing gold and blue inside. “Really hot…”, he repeated, pulling her gently into his arms.

“Not moving in”, she stated. Not very convincingly. Because it might not have been her intention, but somehow it actually was part of exactly that. “Just wanted to have some stuff here. I have the feeling I will spend some time here.”

“Funny”, he commented in a low voice. “Me too.”

She rolled her eyes again at his cocky expression. But then it was her closing the distance and leaning in for a kiss.

“Do you have enough space?” he whispered against her lips.

“For now”, she teased him, pushing him playfully away and walking to the replicator.

Jim smiled to himself and followed her.

Without another word Leah ordered both of their favorite dishes. It wasn’t the first time they ate together in one of their quarters, but it was so different.

The first minutes, silence reigned.

Leah tried to eat normally. However Jim noticed she ate slower than usual.

“You alright?” he finally asked.

She shrugged. “Not sure… I’m hungry… but…” Strangely, she didn’t know how to put it in words. She was actually famished. And this was her favorite food. But it tasted as bad as paper. 

Jim picked up a bite of his food and lifted the fork to her lips.

Leah pursed her lips a little and added a light eye rolling, but allowed him to feed her. The food was good. It tasted normal. She let out a small sigh.

The captain grinned.

“What?”

“Baby Kirk knows what is good.”

Leah huffed. “Baby McCoy is only the size of a poppy seed and doesn’t know anything yet. My hormones and my taste are probably just playing tricks on me.”

He kept grinning. He loved sitting like this and banter with her. He presented another bite on his fork.

She shot him a glare but took it anyway.

When he attempted to pick up another piece with the fork, Leah huffed again, grabbed both of their plates and switched them.

“Hey!” he complained. “That’s my food.”

“Not anymore”, she replied and started eating with sigh of relief that it tasted good.

Jim poked around a little with his fork in the new plate in front of him. “What’s the green stuff again?” he asked.

“Something healthy you should eat.”

“Pfff… And what about you?”

“So go to the replicator and get something else”, she replied, ignoring the question.

“Mh…” He eyed the plate again and decided to try some of the food. He made a disgusted sound, got up and took it to the replicator. A minute later he returned with the same as on the stolen plate.

 

***

 

After dinner they started watching a movie.

Leah leant her head on Jim’s chest and he put his arms around her. Jim smiled to himself and didn’t really concentrate on the movie. He noticed the warmth of Leah’s body, the smell of her shampoo and the pleasant weight against his body. His thoughts drifted to the morning in the shower. He had tried not to check out her naked body – but the glimpses he’d allowed himself now stuck in his head. He badly wanted to touch her skin, explore it and...

Jim scolded himself for thinking like that and for having sex in his mind now. He didn’t wanna rush her into anything in this impossible situation with the pregnancy. He knew they would get there.

Well... He suppressed a grin. They sort of already were, considering the hand job in the shower.

Leah shifted with a small soft sigh, making herself more comfortable. That sound went straight to Jim’s groin. He couldn’t help it. He instantly imagined drawing sounds like that from her.

She sensed a change – Jim tensed a little. She had a notion and sunk even a little more against him, letting a hand slide lower down his torso. She felt him inhale heavily – he was getting aroused.

And she was, too. She liked feeling the warmth of his hands through the fabric on her back. But she wished the shirt was gone. She felt touched and special that he took it slow and didn’t try to initiate sex. She supposed she would have to make the first step and show him that she wanted this as much as he did.

So, Leah slowly slipped her hand under his uniform shirt, earning a barely audible gasp from Jim. She moved her fingers gently between the fabric and his skin, noticing that his pants got tighter.

“Leah...” he whispered.

“Hm?” she replied innocently. She was tempted to simply get up, grab his hand and lead him to the bed. But she was curious, finding out how he would react to her touches and how much or long it would take him to lose his restraint and take charge.

She trailed her hand to the hem of his pants.

Now he shifted a little. “Leah”, he repeated in a tone that was warning and seductive at the same time. Both of his hands went searching for skin contact now and slipped under the fabric of her off duty shirt.

Leah sighed contently. The sensation sent a little shiver up her spine. She couldn't wait having him touch her all over. The little voice inside her which was warning about taking it slow went quiet.

She lifted her head and brought both hands to Jim’s chest. Without a word he moved his own hands to her waist and slowly grabbed the hem of her shirt. Leah smiled when Jim slowly pushed it up and got it off her. She wasn’t wearing a bra under the off-duty shirt.

 Jim drew in some breath and pulled her gently on his lap so she was straddling him. His fingers ghosted over the exposed skin.

Leah’s breath hitched. Her eyelids fluttered and she arched her back a little.

A grin flashed over Jim’s face. He ran his palms gently over her breasts to her back, spreading his fingers and drawing her closer into a searing kiss.

Leah felt his hardness and instinctively rocked against it, making Jim moan into the kiss.

“You need to stop that…”, he breathed.

“Why?” she whispered curiously and amused.

“Because we won’t make it to the bed, if you keep that up…”

She chuckled and moved a little stronger.

He groaned and threw his head back a little. “Trying to be gentle here…”, he mumbled, wanting nothing more than to flip her over and fuck her into the couch.

She smirked. “And who says you need to do that?”

“You’re pregnant…”

Leah rolled her eyes, moved again very intentionally and worked on getting his pants open. “Pregnant, not sick”, she emphasized. “And currently very horny. Gentle is nice, but I think the entire day and the past night were enough foreplay… I’m scared about rushing things…” She had his zipper open now. “… but I want you so badly… And after all some of my clothes are in your drawers and wardrobe right now…”

“Not enough of them…”, he commented with a grin.

She saw something sparkle in his eyes and, with a surprised yelp, found herself a moment later with her back on the couch. Jim was between her legs and his lips were on hers in an instant. She didn’t get the chance of saying something.

Leah felt his hands at her pants, but he suddenly stopped and pulled back a little. She gave him a confused look.

“Bed…”, he whispered. “Don’t want our first time to be a fast fuck on the couch…”

Her surprise turned into a warm smile.

Jim leant in for another kiss and pulled her slowly against him and up. They were standing for a moment and kissing once more.

Then he swept her up in his arms and carried her to the bed. He got rid of her pants and she managed to pull his shirt off his torso. His pants followed soon and when Leah’s bare back hit the mattress Jim was already over her and angling for the next kiss. He couldn’t get enough of her lips.

Leah felt his hard cock at her entrance and gasped in anticipation.

“Protection?” he asked, not sure even why.

She chuckled a little, also rolling her eyes a little. “I think we’re way past this point.” And yet she was touched that he cared. “Luckily for you, no one knows your medical history better than me.”

He also laughed and kissed her again. 

Leah gently guided his length inside. “Don’t hold back…”, she demanded with a moan.

That was all the encouraging he needed. He started thrusting into her, setting a strong pace and getting the gasps, hums and moans he’d already imagined. They fuelled his arousal even more.

Jim felt proud that he made her writhe in pleasure like this. It felt so wonderful and right. He knew he belonged to her and wished they’d done this sooner. And… well, that he’d had the chance getting her pregnant all by himself.

“I love you…”, he whispered into her neck, trailing kisses along her skin. “So much…”

Leah cupped his face and managed to gently push his head up, so she could lock their gazes. “I love you too, Jim.”

She pulled him into a kiss and the strong emotions made his rhythm falter a little. Leah took the chance and skillfully used one of her legs flipping him on his back and straddling him while keeping his cock inside.

That earned her a surprised gasp. He hadn’t expected her to know or use such tricks.

“What?” She raised an eyebrow and started riding him in a gentle pace. “I’m not a woman just laying back.”

He let out a laugh and took the opportunity to let his hands wander over her skin.

She placed her hands on his chest and leant down, steeling a kiss, before increasing her pace. “But don’t worry, you can put me back on my back soon”, she promised in a seductive voice.

He knew instantly that she meant after a first orgasm and made a mental note to ask her later if she needed or simply wanted to be on top.

“Not one of those women…”, she said between moans. “I know you can get me off… Just wanted to be on top for a while…”

Jim chuckled again. Then he thrust up into her, catching her by surprise.

“Oh my God…”, she gasped at the unexpected sensation.

“Not only laying back either…”, he replied in a low voice. He steadied her with his hands at her waist.

Their combined thrusts sent her into an orgasm a few moments later. It was a little unexpected for Leah coming that fast.

Panting, she fell forward and Jim wrapped his arms around her, moving them slowly, so they were both on their sides but still joined. He pulled one of her legs over his hip and gently caressed her skin.

“God, Bones, you’re so beautiful… I’m such an idiot for not telling you sooner how deeply I’m in love with you”, he whispered, gently rocking into her.

Leah sighed contentedly. It was almost too much after the orgasm and not having sex in a long time, but Jim actually managed to use the right amount of force. “I probably would’ve tried to keep our platonic friendship”, she admitted with a gasp.

He leant in for a sweet and light kiss. “Nothing platonic about this…”, he whispered with a smirk and increased his thrusts a little.

Leah’s moans got louder. Damn, that man knew what he was doing.

Jim gently pushed her onto her back, keeping up the thrusts. They were gentler than before. He was tempted to pound into her, but wanted to draw this out and revel into it.

“Nu-uh”, he made, when he felt a protest rising in her. “We’ll get to the hard fucking. But first I wanna hear all those gorgeous tiny gasps and hums from you. Can’t get enough of those.”

Without her knowing she made exactly one of those.

“God, yes…”, he commented on it and thought about how she would sound if he went down on her.

Leah wanted to roll her eyes, but didn’t manage. The sensations literally took her breath away.

However, she managed to make a mental note to turn the table on him and render him as speechless and well fucked as she was now as soon as possible. She wondered if he’d ever gotten a blow job by a doctor.

But for now…

“Harder, Jim…” She felt another orgasm building, but the friction wasn’t enough. He was too gentle with her. “Faster…”

Jim chuckled. But he obliged. He wanted to prolong this, but also felt getting close and needed and wanted more.

Heavy moans and panting filled the room. Leah came with a high pitched sound and took Jim right over the edge with her.

While they tried catching their breaths, she cradled his head against her breasts.

“Don’t wanna crush you…” he mumbled.

“You’re not…” Leah actually like his weight on her and held him a few more moment, before allowing him to shift them so he was on her back with his arms around her and her head rested on his chest.

“Too bad we can’t just forget the aliens and count this as day one of your pregnancy”, he said jokingly, but also wishing that it could be that simple.

Leah lifted her head and gave him a small smile. “Well, this is no fairy tale…”, she whispered a little sad. “But we can make the best of it… I’m so glad you’re the father…” She stretched her neck and kissed him.

He pulled her closer.

“But don’t you dare calling me princess or something like that”, Leah added playfully and warningly at the same time.

Jim laughed. “Oh no, you’ll always be my Bones.”

Leah’s lips slowly parted. She realized that this was bigger than she had thought. She remembered their first meeting in the Academy shuttle and how he’d started calling her Bones when they stepped off.

He cupped her face with one hand, noticing her surprise. He was about to ask what it was about – when he suddenly knew. “Yeah…” he confirmed. “I guess, I fell in love with you right then and there. You were so unlike every other girl or woman I’ve ever met. Rambling about space and danger like that.”

“Into which I followed you”, she remarked dryly.

“Yeah.“ He grinned and winked. “Would make a pretty damn good fairy tale.  Even got the pr– … doctor in the end.”

“I’d rather say I decided to put up with Prince Charming.”

Jim laughed. “You can tell our kid the version you want – as long as you never leave me. I always wanna be with you.”

Now she sat up sideways, not even trying to cover up her bare skin. “This… isn’t what it sounded like, isn’t it?” Her heart suddenly beat a little faster.

He also sat up. “It’s a promise. Maybe it will turn into a question one day.”

One part of Leah wanted this question right now – the other part was completely scared about the failed first marriage.

And then there was that third part of her wondering how Jim Kirk got so mature to think and talk like that. Commitment wasn’t a thing people connected to his name. She however knew how loyal and committed he could be.

Finally, she just nodded. Words failed her right now. But she managed a smile that was more than enough answer for Jim.

She laid down again and turned so he could spoon against her. He ordered the lights out and they slowly drifted into sleep.

 

***

 

Barely an hour later red alert sounded and woke them.

Leah sat up instantly. “Computer, lights!”

 Jim quickly touched a button at the bedside table. “Kirk to bridge, what’s going on?”

“Captain, we are not sure”, Spock’s voice sounded. “There is some kind of attack… Sensors indicate that it is coming from subspace.”

Their eyes widened and their gazes locked in horror.

Leah suppressed cursing. She didn’t wanna give away her presence in the captain’s quarters in the middle of the night.

Jim exhaled sharply. “But we’re safe?”

“It appears so for the moment. Mr. Scott modified the shields for a case like this. But it might not hold a second time.”

The captain sighed and exchanged another glance with Leah. He grabbed one of Leah’s hands and squeezed it reassuringly. “Alright, emergency meeting of the senior officers in fifteen minutes.”

“Yes, Sir”, Spock confirmed and ended the connection.

“Unbelievable…” Leah commented in a bitter voice. “Those fucking bastards!”

Jim just pulled her into his arms.

Chapter Text

The situation was serious. But Jim still laughed, because Leah was cursing about the red alert. He knew she was furious as well as scared.

If the aliens were back…

He waited until she had put on a blue uniform dress. Then he pulled her into his arms again. “We’re both still here. They didn’t succeed. And we’ll make sure they won’t”, he assured her, trying not to let his own worry show.

She huffed and leant into his embrace. “They can’t get their hands at our baby.”

“They won’t.”

Leah slowly pulled back and took a deep breath.

“Together? Or do you wanna head to the briefing room first?”

“Think they’ll even notice if we arrive together? We often do.”

He shrugged. “True.”

Together they walked to the turbo lift and entered the observation lounge a few minutes later. Spock and Sulu were already there. Uhura came right after them and chose a seat next to Leah. Scotty hurried inside a few moments later, followed by Chekov.

“So, what’s going on?” Jim asked, when everyone was sitting.

“The sensors detected an attack from subspace”, Spock explained. “Apparently someone tried to gain access to our space from subspace.”

“Was there another try since then?”

“No”, Scotty answered before Spock could. “I had a pretty little surprise for them. They bounced right off of the barrier between our space and subspace.” He grinned.

Leah sighed. It was relief as well as worry. “Are we safe?”

All gazes were on Scotty now.

“I think so…” he replied. “We need to monitor everything closely and I already tasked Keenser to make our subspace shield alternating, so they won’t be able to poke a hole in it.”

“And will that be enough?” Uhura asked. She avoided eyeing Leah McCoy too much, for she knew about the pregnancy from the conversation with the captain after translating data from subspace.

“We cannot know that”, Spock answered for Scotty.

The Chief Engineer nodded. “Aye. But we’ll raise hell to keep them out.”

Jim also nodded, but suddenly wondered about something. “So… where exactly did they try to get through?”

“Uhm…” Scotty reluctantly began. “… you won’t like the answer, Laddie.”

“The captain’s quarters”, Spock told directly.

Leah tried to keep her face under control. It felt like a kick in the gut. She barely managed to not place a hand on her belly.

A moment of silence fell.

“We just… ”, Scotty carefully continued, glancing Leah for a moment. “… don’t know who their target was…”

Leah closed her eyes for a moment. Of course he’d scanned the quarters in order to access what had happened and knew she’d been there.

“I don’t understand”, Chekov said. “Vhy vould ve not know zat?”

Leah huffed. “Because Jim wasn’t alone.”

All eyes were on her now.

“I was also there”, she explained. There was no point in not being open and honest.

“Sorry…” Scotty whispered.

Jim shook his head. “It’s alright, Scotty.” He could see how the minds around the table were racing.

Leah snorted. “Alright, people, give your imagination a rest. We’re together now. We slept when that damned red alert went off.”

After the first moment of surprised Uhura, Scotty, Chekov and Sulu smiled. Spock just raised an eyebrow.

“Awww, Lassie, this is great!” Scotty suddenly called excited. “Why did you keep it a secret?” He startled at a thought. “Oh, or is this a friends-with-benefits-thing?”

Jim chuckled.

Leah rolled her eyes at him. “No”, she replied. “It’s real. But very new.” She sighed. “And those bastards were after me”, she added bitterly.

“How can you know that doctor? The chances are fifty percent for either of you”, Spock said.

She shook her head, exchanging a short glance with Jim. This was exactly what she didn’t want to do that early in the pregnancy, but considering the situation she needed to tell them everything. She knew from Jim that Uhura knew. But Spock and the others didn’t.

“No, Spock. Unfortunately, they can only have wanted getting me back in their lab…” She took a deep breath and placed her right hand on her belly – a protective gesture that made her feel a little better. “I’m pregnant.” She exhaled sharply. “And they probably wanna monitor me and treat me like a guinea pig, because they did this to me. They took Jim’s sperm and impregnated me. According to the translated data we got, this is part of their experiments on new species they encounter.”

Scotty’s, Sulu’s and Chekov’s jaws dropped. Spock reacted in his usual manor.

Uhura placed her hand reassuringly at Leah’s arm.

“Can I…” Scotty looked like he was going to explode – although he felt bad for the whole situation. He got up and walked quickly around the table to Leah. “Would it be weird to congratulate and hug you?”

Leah blinked surprised. “Sort of”, she replied and added with a small sigh: “But since we decided to have this baby…”

He took it as a yes and hugged the doctor.

Uhura und Sulu kind of squealed, trying to hold back. Chekov mumbled something in Russian no one – except Uhura – understood.

Scotty let go of Leah and hugged Jim as well on his way back to his seat. “We’ll do everything in our power to keep our baby save”, he stated.

Leah unwillingly laughed. “Our baby?”

“We’re a family”, he said and gestured around the table. “The little one is going to have a lot of aunts and uncles.”

Jim smiled. “Yeah, so the baby does.”

Leah sighed. “We’re talking about an embryo the size of a poppy seed. They did this to me – us – only a few weeks back. We don’t know if…” Another sigh. “No matter how this happened – I want to protect the…” She huffed. “Yeah, okay, we can say baby. But pregnancies under three months can still go south. And we don’t know what the aliens are up to next. I fear they won’t leave it at one try. And they probably chase us on our way to Earth… And don’t let me even start about the brass and Starfleet Medical.”

Scotty let out a small whimper.

“What?” Jim asked quickly.

“I’m sorry, Laddie… Getting to Earth might take a while.”

“What happed, Mr. Scott?” Spock asked.

“This isn’t an emergency stop to weigh our options, isn’t it?” Jim added, glancing out of the window. There was space – not warp swirls.

Scotty sighed and activated a holo-screen showing part of the warp drive. “Sorry”, Scotty repeated. “Simultaneously to their attack on the captain’s quarters they shot some energy burst at the warp drive. It knocked it out completely. We’ve got energy for the ship’s systems and the shields. But we’re sitting ducks right now. I can’t say how long.”

Leah wasn’t sure if she should curse or smile. The situation was serious – but this delayed talking to  the brass and the tests at Starfleet Medical.

“Do you know what’s wrong?” Jim inquired.

Scotty shook his head. “No. And I don’t know why, Captain. They must have some kind of advanced technology.”

Jim felt a wave of worry washing over him. “How can we keep them away then? And why can they take out the warp drive, but fail getting through our shield towards subspace?”

“Very good questions, Captain”, Spock commented. “This is a very interesting situation. Really fascinating.”

Now Leah huffed in exasperation. “Not the words I would use”, she hissed. “And since no one knows anything and this isn’t anything medical – I’m going back to bed now.” Her glance softened for a moment towards Scotty. “Please make sure, we stay save, Scotty.”

He nodded and she rushed out without another word, leaving everyone behind stunned.

Sulu suddenly grinned. “And she’ll get even moodier. You should’ve seen my sister when she was pregnant with her first child.”

Jim sighed. “Not helping, Sulu.”

“So, uhm, I’ll get back to work then?” Scotty gestured to the door.

Jim nodded and waved everyone off. “Dismissed.” He wanted to run after Leah, but didn’t for some reason.

Sulu and Chekov hesitated for a moment, wondering if they should congratulate the captain or something like that. But Uhura told them with a short glance to go for now. She also gestured Spock to leave.

When they were alone, she slowly approached the captain. “Are you alright, Captain?”

He shrugged with a sigh and walked to one of the big windows.

She stepped beside him. “A lot has changed since we spoke about my discoveries and you telling me about the pregnancy.”

Jim nodded. “Yeah…”

“But at least in a good way?”

He unwillingly smiled and slowly turned his head. “We’re having this baby as a couple.” He chuckled. “She knew, of course, that I’m in love with her…”

“And she loves you”, Uhura whispered softly.

Jim nodded. “Our biggest scare was what will happen on Earth and if the brass would be making her leave the ship. But now…” He huffed. “Why can’t they just leave us alone?!”

“Scotty will keep them out”, she stated. “If someone can – it’s Scotty.”

The corners of his mouth formed another small smile. “I guess you’re right, Uhura.”

“I know I am”, she told him with a wink. Maybe that was a little exaggerated. She was scared for them. But she meant what she said about Scotty. “You should go to her”, she added.

Jim nodded again. He just wondered whether Leah would be in his bed or her own quarters.

“Good night, Captain”, Uhura said and walked away.

“Night…” he replied absentmindedly.

A few moments later he turned and headed for his quarters. He didn’t ask the computer for Leah. He just went home and hoped he would find her there.

 

***

 

The bed was empty when Jim arrived. He was disappointed and was about to ask the computer about Leah McCoy’s location, when he suddenly heard a strange sound from the bathroom.

“Bones?” Jim called worried. He entered and saw her kneeling next to the toilet.

The doctor was pale. She lifted her head for a moment. “Morning sickness…”

He blinked surprised. “It’s around 300 hours.”

She managed some sort of snort. “Technically that is morning. But it’s only called morning sickness. It can hit you all day.” She moaned and leant a little forward. She felt another wave of nausea.

Jim was next to her within a second. “What do you need?”

She just shook her head and threw up again.

He gently rubbed her back, then got up and fetched her a glass of water.

They sat for a while together on the bathroom floor.

Leah finally sighed. “I think it’s over for now.”

“Okay…” He didn’t know what to do now. Helping her up?

“I need a moment. I’ll be outside in a few”, she said.

Jim nodded and left the bathroom. He sat on the bed and waited for her.

It took a little longer, but she finally joined him. She still looked pale and seemed a bit shaky.

“I’m so sorry”, he whispered.

She slid under the covers and allowed him to take her into his arms. They laid down together with her head resting on his chest.

“Nothing to be sorry about. Morning sickness is normal… And you’re not responsible for what they did to us.”

“I’ll read everything about pregnancies tomorrow.”

Leah laughed. “That’s quite an agenda. Start with the first trimester.”

“Okay…”

She sighed and snuggled closer.

“I love you”, he whispered. “I’ll see if I can help Scotty with anything.”

“Okay…” she whispered tiredly.

“I’m sorry that you had to tell them…” He gently cupped her face with one hand and pushed a strand of hair out of her face.

She sighed again. “At least there is no hiding…” She entwined a hand with his. “I love you, too…”

Jim ordered the lights out and they slowly drifted into sleep.

Chapter Text

Leah’s sleep was light. She felt secure with Jim at her side, but the fear of another alien attack was stronger. Or rather – her anger about their try to get to her and the baby. She trusted Scotty to find a way to keep her and the ship safe. But she woke up repeatedly anyway.

She was glad when the alarm clock sounded and it was time to get up.

“I think you should move in.”

Leah blinked surprised, sat up and looked to Jim who was laying on his side and facing her.  Her first instinct was to tell him that he couldn’t just say something when he – both of them – wasn’t even fully awake.

But she didn’t want to.

And she saw how tired he looked. His night probably had been like hers.

“Okay”, she simply said.

He smiled, also sat up and slid a hand into her neck. He pulled her gently into a kiss.

Leah relaxed against him.

“We’ll get your stuff tonight”, he whispered against her lips and slowly let go of her. “We should get a quick breakfast and then I’ll meet with Scotty. I fear they’ll start another attack soon. We need to be prepared. And we can’t be sitting ducks in this sector.”

“The only good thing is that Starfleet Medical won’t start poking around that soon.”

“Wanna stay here?” he teased.

She rolled her eyes and left the bed. “Hell, no.” She went into the bathroom.

Jim got up and went to his desk. He activated the screen and scanned through the reports from Gamma Shift. Nothing unusual. He also saw a message from Spock informing him that the first officer had talked to Starfleet Command. So they knew about the situation.

He activated a com channel. “Kirk to Scott.”

“Good morning, Captain”, the Chief Engineer’s voice sounded. With a worried and tired tone.

“You were up all night, weren’t you?”

“Didn’t want to sleep. We improved the shields. Should keep them out. But we’re still trying to figure out what knocked out the warp drive… I…” A sigh.

Jim also sighed. “Let me guess. No lead yet.”

“I’m sorry…”

Jim exhaled sharply. “We need to get away from here. If they want to keep us here, maybe they can’t follow us over a certain point in space.”

“Working on it. We’ll figure this out, Laddie.”

“I’ll join you in Engineering in half an hour.”

“Aye.”

“Kirk out.” Jim ended the connection and walked to his wardrobe.

 

***

 

In the end the Captain didn’t make it to Engineering. He needed to answer some questions from Starfleet Command. He took their call in his ready room.

On the screen Admiral Barnett and Admiral Pike appeared. They promised to send three ships to help the Enterprise and to investigate how far the reach of the subspace race was. The plan was to seal the sectors and warn everyone about them. The brass deemed the reinforcements to be in no danger, because the aliens were focused on the Enterprise.

Jim had some doubts. He pointed out that they knew too little about the intruders. The data he’d brought back was only partially translated. So the crew and the brass couldn’t know how the aliens  would react to other Starfleet vessels.

But at least the brass agreed to send ships with human crews. So no Federation races the intruders didn’t know and maybe wanted to use for more experiments would be in danger.

Jim was about to end the connection, when Pike asked him to wait a moment.

The Captain nodded and Barnett left.

“How are you holding up, Jim?” Pike asked in a fatherly tone.

Jim shrugged. “Barely slept. Leah neither. I think she’s really scared.”

“Not furious?” the Admiral replied.

“That too. She’s angry at the aliens and scared for our baby. I share those feelings. I want those bastards gone, but if I should get my hands on them, I can’t guarantee for anything…”

Pike nodded. “You’ll get to safety. I’m sure of that.”

“I…”

Jim didn’t get to finish the sentence. Red alert sounded.

“Shit!” he exclaimed.

Pike gave him a worried glance. “Is it them?”

Jim didn’t answer. He touched a button. “Kirk to bridge. What’s going in?”

“Another attack from subspace, Captain”, Uhura explained.

“How? Where?” Jim replied. This was his worst nightmare. He already knew the answer to the last question. His face became white as a sheet.

“Something happened in Medbay. We’re not sure what it was. Commander Spock is running some scans and Security is on their way.”

 “Go”, Pike said from the screen.

Jim wasn’t able to say anything. He just nodded at the Admiral and ran out of the room.

“Captain?” Uhura asked when Jim didn’t reply.

“He’s running to Medbay”, Pike told her.

“Admiral Pike?”

“Yes. Please keep me in the loop. I wanna know what’s happening.”

“Yes, Sir.”

“Thank you. Pike out.”

He ended the connection and Uhura closed the Channel to the ready room.

 

***

 

All hell was loose when Jim Kirk entered Medbay. A dozen Security officers were running around and the Medbay personnel, too. Keenser was also there and taking some scans at the door of the CMO’s office.

“What happened?” he asked.

Christine Chapel headed towards him. “We’re not sure, Captain.” She touched his upper arm. “Come with me… Some kind of energy beam flooded the CMO’s office while Leah was inside. We heard a scream.”

Jim wanted to walk towards the office, but the nurse steered him into the direction of a private exam room. “She’s in there. Doctor M’Benga is with her.”

Taking a deep breath and being deeply scared and worried he entered the room. He saw Leah laying on her right side and having her arms protectively around her belly.

A slightly rounded belly. The fabric of her blue uniform dress was stretched and almost too tight now.

Leah noticed him immediately, but didn’t have the strength to sit up. Tears were in her eyes. “Jim…”

He rushed at the biobed and crouched down so he was on eye level with her. He gently cupped her face. “I’m here, Bones. I’m here…”

She tried to nod, but started to shiver.

M’Benga approached the biobed at the other side and pressed a hypos spray at Leah’s neck.

Jim stood up. “What happened?” he asked him.

“She was hit by…” The doctor paused and searched for the right words. “Well, we’re not sure yet. According to Keenser, the first data suggests it was an energy beam containing tachyon radiation. It messed with Doctor McCoy’s body.”

“I’m cold”, Leah whispered.

Jim gently helped her into a sitting position and sat on the bed so he could take her in his arms.

She relaxed against him. She slid one arm around his back and kept the other on her belly. “The baby…” she started, shifting so she could make eye contact with Jim. Then she glanced at her belly.

Tachyons… Jim’s eyes widened. Tachyons had to do with time.

M’Benga activated a screen that could be turned, so Jim and Leah could see an ultra sound he’d taken a few minutes earlier. It was displaying a fetus – a little head and some other features were showing.

“I’m so sorry, Doctor McCoy”, M’Benga said. He was aware that she knew already, but since she was still under shock and Jim didn’t know, he spelled it out: “The energy beam apparently sped up growth. Within seconds Doctor McCoy and the fetus aged about fourteen weeks.”

Leah started to shake again and Jim held her closer. His mind was racing. He wanted to curse and yell, but also soothe Leah. Instead he froze. Leah moving and drawing circles on his back with her hand snapped him out of it.

“This is a nightmare…” he breathed.

“Yeah…” she whispered barely audible.

He looked down and slowly put a hand to hers on her belly. It was strange to find it suddenly slightly buldged.

“They are getting impatient”, she said bitterly in a shaky voice. “They wanna speed up my pregnancy.”

Jim felt bad for being fascinated with her belly in this impossible situation.

“We…” M’Benga started carefully and gently. “…need to run a few tests and should keep you under observation, Leah. Everything looks alright for the moment, but your body is still under shock. Aging that much within seconds is already big. But the fetus… We can’t know how your body will deal with the sudden change.”

Leah pulled herself from Jim’s arms and sat fully up, still keeping a hand on her stomach. She just couldn’t let go. “We both aged the same. So that shouldn’t be the problem. But those aliens are becoming a bigger and bigger menace. They stole about four months of my life. I…” Her voice failed.

Jim slid her arms around her again and, with a glance, told the Doctor and the nurse next to him to give them privacy.

They left and Jim sat a few minutes in silence with Leah.

“What if they do this again?” she breathed in a cracky voice. She was fighting tears. She didn’t wanna start crying now.

“We won’t let them”, Jim stated. He sounded convincing, but he was scared and wondered about the same thing.

And he wanted to find out how this attack could have happened. But he knew he couldn’t leave Leah now. He didn’t want to. He had the urge to keep her in his arms and never let go.  Emotions crashed down on him. Loving her so much and being so helpless hurt badly.

Leah took a deep breath and wiped the tears from the corners of her eyes. She carefully stood up and took a closer look at the scans on the screen. She studied the ultra sound. The fetus moved and part of her scare and anger made space for awe. Seeing her baby so far developed had something soothing.

Jim also got up and walked around the biobed, stepping next to her.

A small smile tugged at the corners of Leah’s mouth.

“The baby’s okay, right?” he asked, just to be sure.

Leah nodded. She took Jim’s right hand and put it on the belly, covered by both of her hands. “She’s perfect”, the doctor whispered, locking her gaze with Jim’s.

Jim blinked. It took him a moment to grasp that first word. “She…” he echoed.

“She”, Leah confirmed.

He smiled. She also unwillingly smiled. Learning the sex of the baby and seeing the development on screen made it much more real. That and the belly of course.

Leah circled her hand on the small bump that was covered by too tight fabric. “I need a maternity uniform…” She sighed. “I’ll look like a whale soon.”

Jim gently pulled her into his arms. “You look so damn beautiful.”

She rolled her eyes, but also blushed a little.

He kissed her tenderly, then reluctantly let go of her. “Kirk to Scott. Please report to Medbay.”

“I’ll be there in five minutes, Captain”, the Chief Engineer’s voice replied and the connection ended.

Leah nodded. She was about to leave the room in order to get another uniform when the door opened and Christine walked in with a blue uniform dress.

“I thought I spare you the way. It’s the maternity uniform for the second trimester.”

Leah took it. “Thanks, Christine.”

The nurse smiled and left.

Jim watched Leah discarding her too small uniform dress. His glance travelled to the now bare belly and he felt like he couldn’t get his eyes off it.

Leah herself looked down and studied the change of her body. She grabbed the screen, activated the mirror function and adjusted it so she could take a look at herself. From the front. Then from the side.

She realized that they needed to tell the crew what was going on. And she feared what might happen if the aliens pulled of the same trick again. She suddenly felt completely overwhelmed. She was angry that they stole now time of her life from her.

Jim stepped behind her and slowly slid his arms around her waist onto the belly. “So beautiful…” he repeated his earlier words. “I just wished I could have seen your belly grow.”

She chuckled. “There will be a lot more growing. As I said – whale.”

He also chuckled and attempted to kiss her neck. But she freed herself from his arms and deactivated the mirror.

“I need to get dressed. Scotty will be here any minute.”

Jim made a disapproving sound. But, of course, he knew that she was right. So, he nodded.

The moment Leah was finished dressing, a beep sounded. “Come in”, she said.

The door opened and Scotty entered. He was about to start talking, but the words failed him, when he saw Leah. “Uhm…”

Leah huffed and gestured with both hand towards the small bump. “I hate those damned aliens!” she stated.

Scotty tried to say something again, but just managed: “Huh…”

Leah rolled her eyes.

“We’re running some scans right now”, the Engineer finally said. “I’m so sorry, Lassie. We still don’t know how they could get through the shields. We were modulating them currently. They…” He made a helpless gesture. “We’re rerouting more energy to the shields.”

“And will that help?” Leah asked.

“I don’t know”, he admitted.

Jim sighed. “You need to make sure that they can’t do this again, Scotty. We need to shield the ship from tachyons.”

Scotty blinked. “Why the tachyons?”

Leah huffed. “Because otherwise I’ll be giving birth in a few days!” she snapped at him.

“But the energy burst from subspace lasted only two seconds”, Scotty replied confused while his glance wandered to Leah’s belly.

She snorted. “Yeah, well, apparently that was enough for me to age almost four months and the baby to grow by that amount of time.” She pointed to her belly again. “Meet Exhibit A… But I don’t care what the stuff is called – just make sure it stays away from me!” She glared at Scotty.

“I’m doing my best. Really”, he promised. “But… there’s also some good news.”

Leah crossed her arms as good as she could with the larger belly and raised an eyebrow.

“What is it?” Jim asked normally as he was able to.

“We’ve got impulse power back.”

“That’s a start”, Jim replied and reached for a button. “Kirk to bridge, Scotty tells me, we’ve got impulse power. Set course for Earth and go to full impulse.”

“Yes, Captain”, Sulu’s voice confirmed.

Jim closed the connection again. “With any luck we get out of their reach before they can try something else.”

Leah exhaled sharply. “And if not?”

She suddenly felt pessimistic. Actually, she was completely scared for the life of her baby. And some pretty dark thoughts rose in her mind. “We’re assuming they disabled the warp drive in order to keep us here in their territory of space, right?”

Jim nodded. Scotty, too.

“Did it ever occur to anyone that the warp drive was protecting us?”

Jim frowned confused.

“What do you mean?” Scotty asked.

Both men couldn’t follow her trail of thoughts.

“What if knocking out the warp core wasn’t just taking away our ability to move, but it was the primary goal?”

“No, they wanted to get to you”, Jim said, shaking his head. “What they were doing was aimed at the captain’s quarters. Where you were, Bones.”

“True. But nothing happened to us then. Except for the warp drive failing.”

Scotty’s jaw dropped and his eyes grew wide. “Oh… Oh, nooo…”

Jim looked worried at him. “Scotty?”

Leah just nodded, for the Chief Engineer was understanding now.

“They…” Scotty trailed off and rolled his eyes, cursing himself for not realizing this sooner. “I’m so sorry, Lassie, that I didn’t see it.”

He also gave the Captain an apologizing look.

“I think, the doc is right”, he told Jim. “Maybe they want us to stay here. But they also wanted to get rid of the warp field. Something about it must have prevented them from getting their energy beams with the tachyons through. We thought our shields were strong enough to keep them out the first time. We worked on keeping it that way and modulating them so they couldn’t bypass the shields. But we didn’t account for the warp drive.” He made an exasperated sound. “Remember what we discovered in the cargo bay? We were transferring warp power to the sensor array when all of this began and their connection to our plain of space was there. I didn’t think much of it… But it makes sense. Our modifications didn’t only get their attention – it must also be connected to what’s happening now. They managed to pull some of the crew into subspace, until we sealed it. Maybe they didn’t get done more, because of the warp field during travelling at warp speed. But now… that’s gone…”

Leah exhaled heavily.

“Shit…” Jim whispered. “And with warp gone the doors are all open…”

“Oh God…” Leah closed her eyes for a moment. Her notions got even worse. “It was probably either part of their plan all along or their plan B. They didn’t want to wait ten months – they wanted to gain better access and speed the pregnancy up. Or watching what happens if it’s sped up is part of the experiments…” She suddenly felt like she couldn’t breathe anymore.

Jim was next to her in a heartbeat and took her into his arms. “They won’t get the baby. They won’t.”

“They won’t”, Scotty chimed in, underlining the words with an intense glance.

With a shaky sigh Leah nodded and she and Jim parted again.

“Kirk to Uhura”, the Captain said quietly. “Please report to Medbay.”

“On my way”, she replied via com.

Leah drew back confused. “Why Uhura?”

“The data”, Jim explained. “We need to take another look. And she needs to try to translate more. Maybe that will tell us what’s going on here.”

“Aye”, Scotty nodded. “And perhaps we find out what the exact significance of the warp field is.”

“We need warp speed back, Scotty”, the Captain urged. “Warp one would even be enough.”

The engineer nodded. “On it.” The turned and left.

The door didn’t have time to close, for Uhura was entering.

“Captain. Doctor”, she greeted them and managed to keep the surprise about Leah’s belly contained.

“The attack”, Leah just said. “They accelerated the pregnancy by four months.”

“And we don’t want this to happen again”, Jim added in a firm voice. “We need to get over the data again. How much couldn’t you translate?”

“Almost half. Some parts are too fragmented. But I’ll try again.”

Leah got an idea. “How did you approach? By normal speech pattern or medical ones?”

“Normal”, Uhura replied and nodded. “I’ll try again with scientific language pattern. I’m sorry I didn’t before.”

“Don’t worry”, Jim said. “We’re in the same boat here. We thought we knew enough and that we were safe. That was a bad mistake.”

“Are you alright?” Uhura asked Leah carefully.

“More or less.” She shook her head. “No, not at all actually. This can’t happen again. If they hit me with another energy burst, I could end up being eight months along or even go into labor.”

“I’ll wake up all com officers”, Uhura announced. “Spock certainly will help too.”

Jim shook his head. “Tell him to lend Scotty a hand. We need to get the warp drive back online. We think the warp field might be able to protect us. That’s the priority right now.”

Uhura nodded. “Yes, Captain.” She moved to go, but turned back to them. “Admiral Pike asked me to keep him updated.”

“I’ll do that myself”, Jim replied.

With another nod Uhura left.

Silence fell. Jim and Leah didn’t move or speak for a few moments.

“What now?” Leah finally asked.

“I won’t leave your side.”

She gave him a surprised and also annoyed look. “Jim, you’re needed on the bridge. Or Engineering.”

“No, you and the baby need me right now.”

Leah was about to protest – but instead she closed the distance to him and wrapped her arms around him. “I’ll come to the bridge with you.”

Chapter Text

Leah tried to not think of what leaving Medbay meant – everyone would see her being pregnant very visibly. This wasn’t how she wanted this to be. She felt angrier by the minute about the fact that the aliens had stolen almost half her pregnancy from her. She wanted to grow slowly into the new situation, but now she was thrown in the middle. She feared she didn’t know enough how that pregnant.

But she didn’t want to take back what she said to Jim a minute ago. He was needed on the bridge and since he was set on not leaving her alone, she wanted to accompany him.

But first…

“I think I should make the announcement”, she said quietly. She ran a hand over her small bump. “Can’t run around like this without explaining why.”

Jim just nodded.

Leah took a deep breath and walked to the com unit at the wall. “Computer, open a shipwide channel with video transmission. Authorization McCoy Alpha-Zero-One.”

“Authorization confirmed. Channel open”, the computer replied.

“Attention, Crew of the Enterprise”, Leah began. “As you can see, something has happened.” Her right hand rested on her swollen belly. It’s a long story, but bottom line: I’m pregnant. The intruders from subspace are responsible for this. But the father is human…”  She exhaled heavily. “It’s Jim Kirk. And we are a couple.”

She glanced to Jim who was stepping next to her now and sliding a hand around her waist, resting it protectively on the side her belly.

“We decided to have this child… Unfortunately the aliens still see us as an experiment They don’t wanna give up. Last night I was only a few weeks along, they attacked and took out the warp drive. About an hour ago they hit me with an energy beam that made me and the baby age about fourteen weeks… We’re working on getting away from here. But we don’t know what will happen… So, please don’t be too shocked seeing me with a baby belly now. McCoy out.”

The com connection closed and Leah exhaled heavily.

Jim drew her into a full embrace.

A few minutes later they left the room. Glances in Medbay followed them, but nobody said anything. Christine just gave them a reassuring smile.

“Tell Geoff to take over, Christine. I’ll be on the bridge.”

The nurse nodded.

On the way to bridge some just watched them, some congratulated them. All in all Leah had expected worse. Still, it felt weird suddenly running around so visibly pregnant. She felt the anger rise again. Those damned aliens…

Spock rose immediately when the couple entered the bridge.

But Jim didn’t move to sit down. “Bones…” He gestured towards the chair.

She tilted her head and raised an eyebrow. “Seriously?!”

“You’re pregnant. You should sit down.”

She crossed her arms. “Pregnant, Jim. Not sick. And there are a lot of chairs on the bridge. Doesn’t have to be the command one.”

Now she was also getting angry at him. She didn’t want to be treated like she was made of glass.

“Shall I try for Admiral Pike?” the com officer on duty carefully suggested. “Lieutenant Uhura told me you wanted to talk to him, Captain Kirk.”

“Yes, please”, Leah replied, before Jim had the chance to, very well knowing she was undermining her own words a little by answering for the Captain.

The com officer pressed a few buttons and Jim sat down. He gave Leah an apologizing glance and she nodded, adding a sigh.

A moment later Admiral Christopher Pike appeared on the view screen. His lips parted, but at first he was at a loss for words. “I assume that’s not a pillow under your uniform, Leah.”

She exhaled sharply. “Unfortunately not.”

Pike just stared at her for a few moments, then gestured around. “Just when you think you saw everything…”

Leah shrugged and put a hand on her belly. She caught herself liking to do that now. “Yeah, well, the Enterprise is really a magnet for crazy shit.”

“What happened? Are you alright?” Pike asked her and without waiting for an answer he looked at Jim. “And why isn’t she sitting down?”

“But I–“ Jim started, but didn’t get to finish the sentence.

She isn’t sick or an invalid!” Leah cut in.

Jim showed Pike a glance that told this was thin ice.

Pike simply nodded and it was meant for both of them.

Leah took a deep breath. “To answer your questions, Admiral” – she chose the formal title now –  “the intruders hit me with an energy beam containing tachyons. I aged fourteen weeks and the fetus grew by that time span. So I’m suddenly in the second trimester.” She paused. “I’m fine… Physically at least. But I’m scared as hell that they’ll do this again.”

Worry took over Pike’s face. “You mean they could speed up the pregnancy even more?”

“If we don’t find a way to protect Leah, our baby might be born before we reach Earth”, Jim spelled it out.

Stunned silence fell on the bridge.

Pike managed to stay professional and nodded. “I see.”

“You’ll get the full report within the hour”, Jim said.

Pike nodded again.

“How long until the reinforcements are here?” the Captain added.

“About a day. They’re on maximum warp.”

Jim and Leah exchanged a worried glance.

“We kind of need a warp field as a shield”, the Captain said. “We figured out that the aliens knocked out our warp drive for the purpose of getting the energy beam through. Scotty and his team are working on bringing the drive back online. But right now we don’t even know how they did it.”

The Admiral took a PADD and looked up something. “The USS Endeavour is a few light years away from your position, but they’re on a diplomatic mission and only have warp five. They wouldn’t be any faster at your position than the other vessels.”

“At least we have impulse back. We’re trying to get away as far from here as fast as possible”, Jim explained.

Pike nodded. “That’s at least something… Did you already find out what about the warp field was protecting the ship?”

Jim shook his head. “No, haven’t heard from Scotty since we spoke with him. And that was barely half an hour ago. All available personnel are on it.”

“Maybe the protective effect can be engineered otherwise”, Pike theorized.

Jim slowly nodded.

Leah listened to them and while her right hand slowly circled on her belly, she moved the other to her lower back. She started feeling some pain.  She sighed soundlessly. Her body wasn’t used to the small bump and how it changed her weight and center of gravity. Her body might have aged and accommodated the baby, but her muscles didn’t have the chance to catch up.

“Keep me informed”, Pike finally said. “I wish you all the best… and hope you’ll be able to have a normal pregnancy from now on, Leah.”

She snorted. “Yeah, well, the aliens are the one thing, but the question still is if I’ll be allowed to stay on the Enterprise, right?”

With the both attacks from subspace that topic had gotten into background. But now it hit Leah again how much – despite the things Jim might have said to the brass – was still uncertain. She didn’t care right now that the bridge crew heard everything.

“I can only repeat what I told you when we last talked. If it were to me… but Starfleet Command hasn’t made any decision.”

Pike raised a hand to hold off Jim’s next words. He knew the Captain would say he was still standing by what he’d written in his report. “We’ll talk about this when you reach Earth.”

Both nodded.

“Pike out.”

The screen went dark and the usual view into space trough the large window appeared.

Leah huffed exasperated and turned to Jim. “Okay, I changed my mind.” She and gestured him to leave the command chair.

His first surprised glance turned into a slight grin. He let her sit down.

She sighed. “Looks like my muscles will need a few days do get used to have skipped a few months of pregnancy. If…” She shook her head and didn’t finish the sentence. Everyone knew anyway how it was going to end: if the aliens didn’t do anything else to her.

Standing next to the chair, Jim touched a button on the arm rest. “Kirk to Scott. Any news?”

“Sorry, Captain. Still working on it.”

“Thanks…” Jim closed the connection again.

“Do you…” Sulu carefully started. “Will the brass make you leave the Enterprise, Doc?”

Leah pursed her lips. She had one hand on her thigh next to her belly and the other one was on the arm rest, slightly clutching it now. “Maybe. You heard the Admiral. Nothing’s decided yet”, she answered, trying to sound not sad.

Jim covered her hand on the arm rest with his.

“You wanna stay right?” Sulu added. “And you know we want you to stay here, don’t you?”

She showed him a small smile. “Yeah, I do. Both.”

“Uhura to Kirk.”

Jim and Leah looked immediately at each other when the Lieutenant’s voice sounded.

The Captain opened a com channel. “Did you find something?”

“I think so.”

“We’re on our way.”

Leah rose, but noticed that it was different. Center of gravity and stuff. But she managed to not let it show.

Jim grabbed her hand while walking and she was actually glad about it. She felt really nervous and hoped Uhura’s discoveries were good ones.

They met Uhura in the communications lab. The computers there were equipped for translating difficult speech pattern. The Lieutenant wasn’t alone. Her team was also working on the data from subspace. She waved the Captain and the doctor over.

“There is good news and bad news.”

Leah let out a long sigh. “How good are the good ones?”

Uhura weighed her head. “Middle?”

“The good news first”, Jim decided.

“The aliens won’t act in the next one or two days.”

Leah blinked, but didn’t know what to reply. Jim just looked at her, waiting for her to say something.

“Here.” Uhura pointed to a screen and zoomed in some writing. The translation appeared next to it. “This is the part about them using the Alpha male and female of a species. We focused on that data and were able to translate more of their timeline for that specific experiment.”

“That’s that bad part now, right?” Leah asked and grabbed a chair in order to sit down. She felt her back aching a little again, but thought anyway it would be best to sit while learning what Uhura found out.

The Lieutenant nodded slightly. “So, we already knew that they wanna watch the entire pregnancy and birth and the time after. But we could translate more about their timeframe. They are set on studying each species for not longer than three months. They don’t wanna hold up themselves for too long.”

Leah felt a bad flutter in her stomach. Jim stepped closer to her.

“Of course that’s not nearly enough time for a lot of races”, Uhura said the obvious. “So they accelerate things if necessary. They do it in steps in order to study the stages of pregnancy. It’s between one day and three weeks between stages. But they have an emergency protocol in case their experiments are detected.”

Leah rolled her eyes. “Of course they have.”

“And we’re living through it right now, don’t we?” Jim commented with a dark glare.

Uhura nodded emphatically. “I’m so sorry. Their plan B states that they leave all experiments but the one about procreation. They speed it up, so it won’t last longer than a week. The exact amount of time depends on how long a pregnancy of the species usually lasts. In case of a human pregnancy that would mean they would do three… uhm… treatments…”

Explaining became harder for her, for this was Leah McCoy she was talking about. She exhaled slowly.

“So, hitting me with that energy beam was the first one?” Leah asked.

Uhura nodded. “As far as we understand, yes.”

“And the second one?” Jim added worried. “When will it be and what will it do to Bones and the baby?”

“That was the part about the good news”, Uhura replied. “It’s coming, but we have time to find a way to prevent it. They will wait 24 to 48 hours in order to gain data about the growth and developments of mother and child. Then they’ll repeat it and speed up the pregnancy a second time.”

“And the third one will lead up right to the birth”, Leah remarked bitterly. She felt like her stomach was twisting.

“It won’t come to that”, Jim stated in a firm voice and grabbed the hand Leah didn’t have on her belly. He squeezed it reassuringly.

Leah met his glance. She saw his determination. The corners of her mouth twitched for a moment into some kind of smile. But the fear was stronger.

“You know, that I don’t believe in no-win scenarios, Bones.”

She sighed. “Jim…”

He shook his head. “No, they will keep their hands off my family. Either Scotty finds a way or the reinforcements will.”

Leah wanted to believe this so much. But she felt like getting no air. “If they can take out our warp drive…” Her voice became smaller. “What if they do that to the other ships as well?” Now she almost whispered. “They are monitoring me, so they probably see what we are doing.”

Jim exhaled sharply. “Maybe. Maybe not. I don’t care. They won’t get through with this!”

Leah remained quiet. She felt suddenly so unlike herself. Yes, she was furious and wanted to scream and curse. But she was also so… fucking tired. She felt so powerless. She hated not being able to do anything to protect herself and being forced to just hope others would keep her safe.

“You should get some rest, Leah”, Uhura said gently. “You look a little pale.”

“You’re no doctor”, she argued half-heartedly.

Uhura smiled warmly. “But you know I’m right.”

Leah nodded.

Yeah, she hated this. She wanted a normal pregnancy. She wanted to settle into this. She wanted to only worry to be if she could stay on the ship – and not being scared to death about some aliens and if she had to give birth in about three or four days. Not to mention what would follow.

The doctor slowly rose. She didn’t really wanna know, but knew she needed to: “Could you translate what they’re doing after their specimens give birth?”

“We don’t know. There is some text left to translate, but it appears the Captain didn’t get it all when downloading the data. We try to make some sense of it as soon as possible.”

“Please, tell us the moment you know”, Jim asked her. He didn’t want to make it an order.

Uhura nodded. “Even at night”, she promised.

Jim glanced at a chronometer. “Let’s get something to eat, Bones.”

“Not hungry.”

“But Baby Kirk-McCoy certainly is”, he replied quickly.

Leah did actually feel hungry. She just didn’t know if she could get something down. “Fine…”

Uhura watched them go with a small smile. No matter how horrible the situation was – they were just a great couple.

“Lieutenant Uhura.”

She turned to an Ensign.

“You should see this”, he said, gesturing her to follow him to his screen. “This could help Commander Scott.”

Chapter Text

Leah slowed down around the corner from the mess hall – and finally stopped.

“Bones?”

She sighed and looked at Jim. “Sorry, just a little nervous. Last time I was in mess hall I wasn’t looking that pregnant.” She glanced down her belly.

He closed the distance to her, slid an arm around her waist and pulled her gently into a kiss.

When he let go of her, she just rolled her eyes at him. “I’m a doctor, not a damsel in distress.”

Jim chuckled. “I know. Don’t worry.” He gave her an admiring look. “You’re just so beautiful.”

“You keep saying that”, she replied. She wasn’t a woman wanting to get a lot of compliments. But she secretly liked it – she just would never admit that.

And his eyes were telling her that he knew. But he just shrugged and gestured her with a move of his head to walk on.

Leah followed him and they stepped through the door to the mess hall.

At first no one noticed. But soon the gazes were following them around.

Leah tried to ignore it. She told herself repeatedly that this was bound to happen. She just needed to get used being… pregnant.

They talked over this and that while lunch, trying to avoid the topic that scared them both. Knowing what Uhura had told them calmed them down a little. But they feared it might just delay the next attack from subspace.

When they left the mess hall again, and stepped into a turbo lift, Leah requested the deck where Medbay was.

“What, why?” Jim immediately asked.

“I have work to do, Jim. We’re safe for now.” The lift stopped and she walked out. “See you tonight.”

“Bones…”

She shook her head. “I need some normality.”

With a sigh Jim finally nodded. The door closed and he gave order for the bridge as destination.

 

***

 

The afternoon went by fast. Jim tried to do some paperwork and Leah ran a complete pregnancy physical on herself. She also started reading up about the second trimester. She just hoped she could really live through it.

Despite all the trust she had for Scotty, Uhura and the entire crew – she still feared about being in labor soon.

And maybe the biggest fear was what would come then.

She wasn’t ready to be a mother yet. She wanted to slowly get there.

And even more so – she was scared to death what the aliens planned for her daughter when she was born.

At some point she contacted Yeoman Rand and they met at the CMO’s quarters in order to get Leah’s stuff packed in some boxes. She didn’t have that much. They were done within an hour. And most of her clothes had to go to storage for now. They wouldn’t fit for a while.

Rand took care of getting everything to the Captain’s quarters by transporter and storing the rest away. Even though Leah hated that technology sometimes, now she was glad about it.

So, when Jim entered the suite after Alpha shift, he saw Leah and Rand reorganizing his wardrobe and drawers. And he notices Leah was bare feet. Her boots laid discarded next to a drawer.

“Wow, okay…”

The women turned.

Rand kept a neutral face. “Good evening, Captain.” She just continued hanging up the last of Leah’s new maternity uniforms they had gotten from the quarter master’s replicator.

Leah closed a drawer where some new underwear had gone.

Jim looked around and saw Leah’s stuff next to his on some shelves. And there were some empty boxes. “I wanted to help.”

Leah kissed him quickly, heading to the replicator. “I know, Darlin’, but I didn’t wanna bother you.”

His lips parted in surprise about that term of endearment. He eyed Rand for a moment and wished she wasn’t there.

Rand seemed to notice that something shifted and suppressed a smile. “I’ll be off then. Call me, if you need something. Doctor. Captain.” She hurried out.

Jim was behind Leah within a moment and slid his arms around her and his hands onto her belly. “You called me Darlin’,” he whispered in a low voice, placing a kiss at her neck.

She leant back against him and smiled to herself. “I can go back to calling you just Jim.”

One of his hands trailed to the zipper of her uniform dress. “No…”

She allowed him to undress her. First the dress, then the bra and finally her panties. His hands roamed her body, exploring her new curves.

“I think your breasts are larger”, he whispered huskily, ghosting over the skin.

She gasped and threw her head back. She felt his hardness and reacted to it. But…

“Jim… we shouldn’t have sex now…” she protested weakly, remembering the grave situation. The undressing probably wasn’t a good idea.

“The other ships will be here soon and until then nothing will happen”, he argued and let a kiss follow.

Leah sort of knew he was right and wanted nothing more than him right now. But a big wave of insecurity crashed over her. Damned hormones. She started to shiver a little. “Jim…”

He cupped her face and noticed what was going on. He caressed her skin and pulled her close into his arms.

She relaxed a little against him. “I’m sorry…”

He circled a hand on her bare back. “I’m here for you. I’ll protect you… Both of you...” He placed a kissed at the crook of her neck. “I know you’re afraid and that you hate depending on a rescue. Me too. I don’t wanna sit around. But either the other ships help us or Scotty will find a way. And the most important thing is that the aliens won’t get their hands on you and the baby.”

Leah couldn’t stop shivering, but managed to nod into the embrace. Him saying this made her feel a little better, even though she still felt like a complete mess.

Jim slowly let go of her and took her hand. He led her to the bedroom area, took an old Academy sweatshirt out of a drawer and handed it to her.

Leah held the fabric against her torso, but hesitated.

“You’re cold, Bones. Put it on.” He felt bad for undressing her in the first place and tried to will the erection away.

She didn’t know what was going on with her, but the shivering stopped. She didn’t care anymore that she was a little chilly. She let the sweatshirt sink and leant in for a kiss.

Jim returned the kiss surprised.

“I think I’m going nuts…” she whispered, sort of diagnosing her sudden change of mood. Her hands found the zipper of his uniform pants and worked them open.

Grabbing his waistband she walked backwards, pulling him with her.

Jim’s hands found her hips and steadied her when she laid down. She pulled him with her, not allowing him to undress first.

He wanted to ask what she was up to, but her lips captured his in a hungry kiss. This was the answer to the unspoken question: She wanted to feel him. Now. Fast. Waste no time.

At first he was confused, then grinned a little, realizing how much fun her pregnancy craziness would be when the danger from subspace would be over.

He hovered over her, careful not to put his weight on the rounded belly. He kneeled with wide legs and pulled her closer. It took him only a moment to free his cock and enter her in gentle and yet firm move.

Leah fully approved with a pleased loud moan.

Neither of them lasted long.

She was overwhelmed how different and great it felt – the angle, Jim still wearing his uniform and her body being all sensitive.

He was hugely turned on by her writhing in pleasure.

Leah urged him to go harder and faster. And he did. He came, taking her with him and yelling her name.

Panting he settled onto the mattress. Leah turned on her side and rested her head on his chest.

“I didn’t hurt you, did I?” he suddenly asked with worry.

“No, Darlin’.”

That name sent a warm feeling through his body and he smiled happily.

“I wanted this.” Leah lifted her head. “No idea what’s going on with me.”

“No complaints here”, he teased, shifting on his side so they were face to face. He felt the urge to tell her again how much he loved her and how gorgeous she was.

He decided to simply kiss her.

 

***

 

Uhura was pacing around. She constantly eyed Scotty checking and rechecking. She wanted to ask, but restrained herself from disturbing him. If this was working…

“Hm…” he made.

She huffed, still saying nothing. She stopped, crossed her arms and leant against a table.

“I think…” he slowly started, still looking at the numbers. “I think this might work.”

Uhura looked up relieved. “Really?”

He nodded. “Yes… but there’s a catch.”

She felt a sting in her stomach. “How bad?”

Scotty weighed his head. “I’ll need at least thirteen hours to get the frequency right.”

“That puts us into the dangerous timeframe.”

Scotty simply nodded.

“And the reinforcements should be here by then.”

He nodded again. “Yes, but we’re doing this. Because if they should knock out the other ships…”

Now Uhura nodded. “Right, we need everything we can get. If the aliens haven’t given up yet, they will keep fighting.” She sighed heavily. “I saw their files… You know the saying that a lot gets lost in translation?”

“That doesn’t sound good”, he carefully replied.

“No, it doesn’t. They may be scientists, but they are nothing like what we understand under that term.”

“Should we call the Captain?”

Uhura shook her head. “That wouldn’t change anything, would it?”

“Isn’t that some kind of subordination?”

The Lieutenant shrugged. “Do you care?”

“No, I just want the Lassie and our baby to be safe.”

Uhura unwillingly smiled. He was talking again as if the baby was the crew’s. She nodded and turned to walk away, leaving Scotty to his work.

Chapter Text

So, Uhura and Scotty didn’t tell the Captain and the doctor about Scotty’s progress. One of the reasons was that, since Leah was under observation by the aliens, they wouldn’t learn from her. At least that was what Uhura and Scotty hoped.

They also were relieved that the couple seemed to be a bit more relaxed the next morning. They didn’t know if it was because of the perspective of help by some other Starfleet vessels or something that might have happened during the night.

In the end, it didn’t matter.

The USS Hathaway, Stargazer and Excalibur were hailing the Enterprise around lunch time. They came into transporter range soon after. But Leah declined being beamed to one of the ships and being taken to Earth.

Jim didn’t even try to contradict her decision. In fact, he was glad she would be near him and he could protect her himself as well as he was able. Also, they didn’t know how the aliens would react. They might attack one of the other ships.

For now the beings seems only to keep watching them. No other attempt of accelerating Leah’s pregnancy again.

The Captains greeted each other in the conference call via view screen.

The glance of Edward Riker, Captain of the USS Stargazer, travelled to Leah McCoy who was standing near the command chair and yet slightly in the background. “And hello, Doctor McCoy.”

She simply nodded.

“So, it’s really true. You’re pregnant”, Riker added.

If the term wasn’t reserved for Jim, she would call him Captain Obvious now. Instead she rolled her eyes. “So that’s what it is? And I thought I just had too much of that Betazoid chocolate”, she remarked in a voice dripping with sarcasm.

Jim grinned. “I guess, you all have been briefed about the situation”, he finally said seriously.

The three Captains nodded.

“Good. So, I suggest we try getting out of here. We’re not sure how they knocked out our warp drive. And we also don’t know if they would to the same to you. We also don’t want to get stuck here.”

“But impulse works?” Tina LaForge, Captain of the Excalibur, asked, even if it was not necessary.

Jim nodded. “For now.”

“But we are not sure how far we would have to travel to get out of reach of the intruders from subspace”, Spock explained.

“You assume, they’re trying to keep you here?” Captain Michael Wayne of the USS Hathaway inquired.

“Amongst other things”, Spock replied.

“Did you do scans on your way here?” Jim asked.

All three nodded.

“Maybe we should bring the data together and see if a pattern shows that will allow us to pinpoint the extent of the alien’s reach.”

Leah huffed. “Assuming that they are restricted to an area.”

“Yes, Doctor”, Spock agreed.

“And if not?”

“It would be logical.”

“Even though that stuff with the warp field shielding us?”

“The probability–“

“Never mind!” Leah cut in. “I’m sick of this.” She turned to Uhura. “Did we consider finding a way to talk to them?”

Uhura blinked surprised. “No.”

“Whoa”, Jim interjected and Leah looked at him. “Do we even want that?”

“We’re running out of options, Jim”, Leah argued, feeling a wave of insecurity.

“Not yet”, he replied. “Captain LaForge, could you tow us with the tractor beam? Captains Wayne and Riker, you should perhaps get out of range with your ships, so if the aliens attack, your warp drives won’t be damaged.”

Leah huffed. “Seriously, Jim? Is this a thing with three tries now?”

The Captain shrugged. “I’m open for other suggestions, Bones.”

“I vote for trying this”, Scotty said, walking out of a turbo lift. “I might have something else up my sleeve, but first – this.”

Leah threw her hands in the air.

“Alright”, Wayne said, “we’ll be at a safe distance then.”

“We, too”, Riker added. “We detected an asteroid belt with some unknown radiation a light year away. My Chief Science Officer believes that this might be the border of their space.”

“Behind the belt it is”, Wayne confirmed.

They ended the connections and Sulu talked to the Excalibur’s pilot for the towing.

Jim closed the distance to Leah and, as discreetly as possible, grabbed one of her hands. “Maybe it will work and we get rid of the aliens.”

She just sighed.

“We’re ready, Captain”, Sulu announced.

“Then let’s go”, he ordered.

The Excalibur activated the tractor beam and slowly activated impulse, then warp one.

Everyone tensed. Scotty perhaps the most. He was prepared to give orders or his plan B if this shouldn’t work.

But nothing happened. Nothing bad that is.

A minute passed and the ships still were at warp.

Jim and Leah exchanged a glance. They didn’t know whether they should stay careful and skeptical or could allow themselves to relax now.

“It this a good sign?” Sulu finally asked what everyone was wondering about.

“No idea…” the Captain sighed.

“They could toy with us”, Leah remarked.

Scotty walked to the engineering station and checked a few things. Some of the tension left his body. Everything looked alright. He slowly got up again, prepared to tell the news.

But…

Leah barely managed to grab a hold of the command chair when the ship suddenly started to shake and automatically went into red alert.

“We dropped out of warp!” Sulu called, while Scotty cursed.

Jim made Leah sit down in his chair and activated the safety belt. He stopped her protest with a quick kiss.

“Is it them?!” he asked exasperated.

“Who else?!” Leah answered before Scotty, Sulu or Spock had the chance.

“Uhura, hail the Excalibur”, Jim ordered.

“Channel open.”

“Enterprise to Excalibur, are you alright?”

The other bridge appeared on the view screen.

“Yes, we are”, Tina LaForge said. “Just a little shaken. And our warp drive seems to be dead.”

Jim nodded. “I’m very sorry.”

“Alright…” Scotty said in a low voice. “They asked for this.”

“Scotty?” Jim replied confused.

All eyes were on the Chief Engineer now. He sat down at the station in the back of the bridge again and activated something. The lights flickered for a moment.

Finally, Scotty turned in his small chair towards the other officers. “A little something we worked on,” he explained. “A new force field, imitating a special frequency the warp drive was emitting. It’s tied to the shields and should work.”

Jim smiled. “Good job.”

“But…” Leah started. “Can we be sure that it will work?”

“The Doctor has a point”, Spock said, giving Scotty a curious look.

“It’s our best shot”, Scotty said confidently. “Besides – it’s all we got. The aliens would render the warp drives of the other ships useless, if we tried that trick again. The extra shielding contains every trick I know.”

He turned around to his station for a moment and typed in some commands. “I sent the specifications for the modified shields to the Excalibur, the Hathaway and the Stargazer. I guess, the Stargazer and the Hathaway will have to tow us and the Excalibur back to Earth for repairs.”

Jim nodded. “Okay.”

Leah sighed and deactivated the seat belt. But she kept sitting. She actually felt a little dizzy from what had happened. She didn’t really want to be in the command chair, but knew that her body needed a moment.

Jim told Uhura to open a conference call and informed the Captains about the plan.

The doctor was glad that none of the other male Captains commented on that or the fact where she was sitting right now.

A few minutes later the Stargazer and the Hathaway were next to the Enterprise and the Excalibur.

Jim and Spock watched from the corners of their eyes an almost amused Montgomery Scott. The Chief Engineer was monitoring something. Jim assumed it was the shield.

“Scotty?” he finally asked, when the man chuckled.

“Imagine an annoying bee flying against the same window over and over again”, Scotty replied with a grin.

That made the Captain smirk.

Leah huffed. “Fine, so we got rid of them?” She rose from the chair.

“Yes”, Scotty confirmed.

“Good”, she simply stated and headed to the corridor. “I’ll be in Medbay.” She knew they were probably safe from the aliens now, but she was now afraid again what Starfleet would say regarding her pregnancy and remaining on the Enterprise.

“Uhm…” Jim looked after her. He was tempted to follow her and to make sure that she was okay, but his place as Captain was on the bridge.

“You alright, Captain?” Sulu asked.

“Yeah…”

“Maybe…” Uhura started drawling. “… you should get checked out in Medbay for this was some kind of combat situation.” She winked at him.

“And is that a cut on your hand?” Scotty added, also winking.

Jim chuckled, looking for a moment at his completely uninjured hands. “Spock, you’ve got the conn. Inform me, when we reach Earth or if something should happen. Please note in the ship’s log that I had to go to Medbay, because… Oh, you’ll think of something”, he instructed his first officer on the way out.

Spock just nodded.