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"That sounds perfect, thank you, Spock." Jim steps back from Spock's station on the bridge, already reaching towards his boyfriend for an ozh'esta before he remembers where they are. Pulling his hand back, Jim shakes his head at Spock's raised eyebrow - he doesn't want to do this here and now - then heads back to the captain's chair. A quick glance around tells him they probably got away with it, and Jim doesn't really want to think about what would happen if they didn't. 


"Did you see them on the bridge today?" Uhura asks as she sets her tray down.

"God, it was unbearable." Sulu groans. Chekov just shakes his head. The relationship, or lack thereof, between their captain and his first officer isn't always the focus of their post-shift gossiping, but on days like today, there's little else to discuss.

"I think zhat zhey are already together." Chekov says. "Have you noticed zhat zhe keptin touches zhe commander less frequently while on zhe bridge?" Uhura snorts.

"Kirk isn't capable of keeping something that big under wraps."

"And why would they want to? Trust me, if I were getting any, you'd know." Sulu adds. As he finishes, Chapel settles into the last empty chair at their table, her hands wrapped around a mug.

"Talking about Kirk and Spock again?" She asks, leaning her head on Uhura's shoulder.

"Feels like we always are." Uhura sighs.

"Well, I heard something very interesting about the two of them today." Chapel starts. "I don't know if it's true or not, but my source is fairly reliable. Apparently, they almost kissed on the bridge this morning."

"What? How do you even hear this shit? We were there." Sulu is staring at her, eyes wide.

"It wasn't as scandalous as you're thinking, clearly. Vulcans are touch telepaths, right? So they have all these nerve endings in their fingers. They kiss differently than we do - with their hands." Chapel sits back, smug, as the table thinks it over.

"Zhis is vhat I have been saying." Chekov says. "Zhey are already together, and making an effort to keep it a secret. How else would zhe keptin even know about that?" 

"Know about what, Mr. Chekov?" The whole group starts at the question - none of them had seen Kirk even enter the room.

"Ehm, about Ensign Ivanov's birthday next week, keptin. You mentioned it yesterday. She is my cousin, you know."

"Right, right. Any plans for the celebration?"

"Nyet, sir. I believe her friends in engineering are putting something together."

"Wish her well from me, then. See you all tomorrow." Kirk smirks as he leaves.

"That was too close." Sulu breathes, dropping his head on the table.


"They're already figuring us out." Kirk murmurs into Spock's shoulder. He'd made a valiant attempt to get his paperwork done, but it was late, and Spock is warm on the couch next to him.

"There is no reason for us to keep our relationship a secret, Jim. We can certainly tell them, if you wish."

"Not yet. I like having a secret. Keep you all to myself."

"Whatever makes you happy."