The evening after Jim had spoken his first word (the choice of which still rankled their CMO to no end), McCoy was in his office in Sickbay, filling out yet another report before he would be able to turn in for the night. It was nearly 2330, and he had gotten five hours’ sleep the night before due to one thing and another which required his attention, and yet the paperwork had to be done, since it had nearly tripled with their captain out of commission.
Stifling a yawn, he scrawled an illegible signature over a requisition form, not even bothering to read it (Chapel knew her stuff). Then suddenly a Blue Alert wailed into life on his monitor, indicating a minor containment breach in one of the Bio-Medical labs.
He was debating if his appearance would be worth the expenditure of energy (the analysis on his screen said nothing harmful to humanoid life, though Sulu’s prize Andorian moonflowers might not make it if the gas wasn’t contained), when his office door opened.
“Need me?” he asked, yawning, and entirely too exhausted to conjure up a suitable repartee for his Acting Captain.
Spock plopped a sleepy infant on his lap without preamble. Jim hiccuped at the jolt, rubbing his eyes with a small fist and blinking owlishly at the bright lights. “Negative. Please watch the captain while I rectify the situation.” And with that he was gone, leaving McCoy and the child staring at each other.
“Why aren’t you asleep yet, hm?” he asked the little one half-seriously. “What, was he sittin’ up readin’ you warp physics textbooks as a lullaby?”
Jim looked around sleepily. “Spa?”
He rolled his eyes. “Spa is the reason you’re not asleep right now like all little boys should be, the pointy-eared idiot,” he muttered. “Will serve him da-darn right if you wake up at 0400 squalling for a diaper change. We'll be havin' words about proper human bedtimes, let me tell you.”
Jim apparently was through listening to him, for he snuggled down into a more comfortable position, tousled head resting just under the Medical insignia on the physician’s scrub-shirt. “Bobobobo,” the infant babbled sleepily into his tunic.
“Yeah, yeah,” he grunted, certainly not about to be moved by the kid, however cute he was. “Keep quiet and let me finish these reports, then we’ll see ‘bout putting you to bed until Spock comes back. Can’t use that bassinet now that you’ve figured out how to flip it upside-down and get out, now can we?”
Jim snuffled into his shirt, rubbing his eyes with one fist which then latched onto a small handful of blue scrubs, and was surprisingly quiet.
It took him twenty minutes to finish his reports (his own fault, for leaving them until the last minute in hopes his staff would take pity on a poor pseudo-single-father and do them), and by that time the little one was fast asleep, curled up against his chest and resting in perfect contentment.
Spock still hadn’t returned from the labs (he felt sorry for the poor fools who had been in them when the alert was sounded), and he wasn’t about to take the kid back to his cabin without it being babyproofed (and set up with a safe crib) for him to spend the night. He instead crashed on his office couch, for just a few minutes. Really, just a few; ten at the most, surely Spock wouldn’t be longer than that…just a few…
Spock was considerably longer than that, due to complications in the next-door Botany lab (and having to placate a heartbroken Lieutenant Sulu over the demise of his pet plant), and when he returned to Sickbay forty minutes later he was half-expecting to be met with irascible bursts of sleep-deprived temper.
He was not expecting half the female gamma shift medical staff to be crowded around the CMO’s office door, watching with hushed voices punctuated by quite a few giggles.
He cleared his throat.
Red-faced, the Medical staff scattered in all directions before his pointed gaze, and he sighed, continuing on into the office. However, seeing their grumpy Chief Medical Officer snoring on his office couch, a blonde-curled infant sound asleep under a protective arm and drooling slightly on the doctor’s chest, he then understood their emotional human attraction to a scene known colloquially, he believed, as ‘adorable.’
Leaving them for another few minutes in that position was entirely due to their need for sleep, of course; nothing more.