After the unfortunate death of Momo the Dingy Feline, McCoy took the young captain back to Sickbay to get him changed. His miniature gold uniform, lovingly programmed into the clothing selector by a completely soft-hearted quartermaster, was ripped across the knees and covered in various fluids from Jim’s trek through the maze of Jefferies tubes.
“Momo gone,” the little one said sadly as McCoy wrestled his left arm through the armhole of a new yellow shirt (Christine was trying to locate the necessities for his lower regions as the child went through them far more regularly and they were scarce as a result). Jim’s free hand tried to swipe across his running nose, and the physician snatched it with a growl of protest before it came away covered in mucus.
“Yeah, kid, I know,” the physician sighed, wiping the child’s nose with a disposawipe before trying to pull the uniform tunic over the wild sandy hair. “Just wait, I’ll betcha Spock’s disappeared to locate a ‘suitable replacement for the human emotional necessity of a childhood companion’ or some such crap.”
“Crap!” came the echo from inside the depths of the shirt, arms waving floppily like small yellow wind-socks.
Chapel shot him a dirty look, and he shrugged; what was he gonna do? Not like the kid wasn’t saying worse (in five languages) before the age of six when he was a real child. “Why won’t this dang shirt fit over your head, Jim?” he muttered, tugging on the fabric.
“OW! Bad Bo’!” Jim hollered, and he hastily removed the article from the kid’s person.
Jim glared at him balefully, rubbing his head with both hands, where apparently the neck of the shirt had yanked his chaotic hair.
"And wait a minute, since when do you say more than one word at a time?” He inspected the small tunic, and then reached for the medical scanner Christine was already handing him, eyebrows drawn.
“Wanna see!” Jim piped up, hands grabbing in an effort to snag the scanner as it whirred over his head. “Bo, WANNA SEE!”
“Okay, just a little disturbed here,” Chapel murmured from behind him. “Relatively complete sentences out of the blue? And doesn’t he look bigger to you?”
The scanner beeped. McCoy took one look at the display, sighed, and tossed the instrument on the bio-bed. “Call Requisition and see if we can get him some bigger clothes. Child's size 3T maybe? 4T? It's been decades since I had to do this, I dunno. Just get every size over infant, he'll probably grow into them. At least we probably skipped the whole ‘first steps and learning to walk’ drama; though with our luck we’ll still have to potty-train the kid. Sickbay to Acting Captain,” he continued into the wall comm-unit.
“Spock, tell the crew to nail down everything they can and disable the sugar options in the Mess Hall replicators. We’ve got a hyperactive two-year-old running amok on this ship now.”
Silence for a moment while Spock obviously gave the appropriate orders, and then the cool voice returned. Doctor, am I given to understand by your tone that this rapid age progression is not a desirable outcome?”
“Have you ever babysat a human toddler, Spock, especially one as spoiled as this one is already?”
A large crash, followed by the skittering of metal instruments across the flooring, sounded from behind him, accompanied by a hollered “Sowwy!”
Great, that meant pediatric speech therapy too, another thing he hadn't had to do in years. Jim owed him some serious hazard pay for this little stunt.
“You are aware that the answer is a negative.”
A naked blur shot by him, and he thanked every deity in the quadrant for Christine’s quick reflexes, or else their shameless little captain would have given the entire ward an eyeful.
He rested his head on the wall beside the comm-unit. “Well you’re in for the experience of your life, then, Spock. We don't call them the terrible twos for nothing.”
“BO! Wanna talk to Spock! Leggo me, ‘Tine! BO, LOOK!”
Christine’s yelp caused him to turn and look at the young captain, who was currently climbing up the side of his bio-bed to get a look at the blinking lights of life-sign sensors.
“The little brat kicked me!” the nurse said indignantly, though McCoy could see she was more amused than truly injured. Nonetheless, it was obvious that the kid was going to have to learn some manners, and guess who would probably get stuck teaching them since a particular Vulcan seemed to think Jim could do no wrong (no change there from his normal state). Also, if Jim could formulate sentences then the least the kid could do would be to say his name correctly.
Jim pressed the first button he saw on the sensor board, and a klaxon began to wail as the bed thought its occupant was crashing. Startled, the child’s hands loosened and he hit the bed’s mattress with a thump, whereupon he launched himself off it backward like an acrobat, sliding with a squeak on his backside to hide under the next bed.
Grown men did not whimper; it was a very adult-sounding moan. Christine was laughing too hard to comment on it, anyway.
“Spock, get your green-blooded behind down here before this hellion destroys my Sickb– James Tiberius Kirk, we do not touch the laser scalpel!”