"I am a bloody doctor, not a wet behind the ears nurse." said McCoy as he walked down the forest path.
"Come on, Bones, it is going to be an adventure." Jim turned around and smiled, as he continued walking down the path. "Plus, we will be there is less than 15 minutes."
"You didn't even have to be here." McCoy said, but then he at least shut up.
Jim smiled, as he turned around again, his head turned up to the sunlight. He would not be Jim Kirk, if he would refuse an off-world visit. The new palaces, new cultures, new people. Even if it was the medical milk run that he force his way into.
A short while later, they came to the clearing, and they saw the small house, which was their destination. There were two women placed at the door of the house. They were looking directly at them.
Jim and Leonard made their way there, and stopped short distance away. They both used their right arm to touch their left tight.
The both women waited a little until their mirrored their action, but their movement was slower. But there had been no other reactions.
Leonard stepped towards them. "I was told that there is a patient here."
The both women looked at one another. Then after what was a very uncomfortable minute, they both turned to Leonard. "This way, doctor."
McCoy started to enter, and Jim followed. Or at least he tried, as he was stopped by a pair of four-fingered hands. "Doctor only."
"Why?" Jim asked, as he looked at their hands.
"Just wait here, infant." Leonard said, as he entered the building.
Jim rolled his eyes, as he stepped back, and sat himself on the grass. This is going to take a while. And he could not complain about the view. He winked at one of the women.
Leonard's screen pierced the air, and Jim immediately jumped up, intent to going inside the house, but he was stopped by the two pairs of hands, that pushed him to the ground. He was trying to struggle, but his body felt like it was underwater, slow to respond or move. One of them knelled next to him and put the hand on his torso.
"What have you done to doctor McCoy?" he pushed through his lips, as he glared at the woman still standing.
"It had to be done." she said. "It is our duty to protect it."
"Let me go!" he said, as he tried to move, but then he felt the big pain flare in his head for a moment and had to stop.
The standing woman knelled down to him. "There is no reason for you to go through that as well."
"And it is for Bones?" Kirk spat at her. "And what the hell is that anyway?"
The women looked at one another. Then they stood back, and Kirk felt the body returning to its normal state.
Kirk stood up, his legs wobbling. He tired to say something, but then Leonard's screaming started again. Kirk started to run toward the house.
When he came there, his stomach decided to contract into a black hole. McCoy was lying on the middle of the floor, his his body wrapped into itself, his eyes tightly shut.
Kirk knelled next to him. "Bones? Bones!" he tried to shake him, but there was no response. He was at least still breathing. He looked up the bed in the corner.
A girl sat there, looking at him in interest. She crocked her head.
"What did you do to him?" Kirk demanded.
The girl shook her head. "You are really only trying to save him?"
"What?" Kirk said. But McCoy twitched and Kirk put the hand on his shoulder. But there was still no reaction.
"He was trying to bring me to the other side of the planet." the girl said. "So he had to be punished."
"He was trying to help!" Kirk said. "Stop this."
"I can't." she said, as she stood up. "But you might."
Kirk glared at her, when he noticed the hands on his back. This gave the girl enough distraction to put her hands on his head. He felt his vision swim around him, his body become limp, and then the darkness claimed him.
Kirk become aware of the oppressive feeling in the air, and he realized that he is standing up. He opened his eyes, but there was nothing around to be seen, just darkness. He looked down at his hands, but they were visible as normal.
He then noticed his clothes. He was in black star fleet uniform. Which was not what he was wearing beforehand.
He tried to take a step forward, and noticed that the floor seems to extend further away from him. His walk become more secure.
The quickly realized that he is tiring a lot quicker than he should have. He wiped the sweat from his forehead, and supported himself on his knees. He was trying to get more oxygen to his lungs. It wasn't even hot. He is going to collapse before he is going to find Bones. Where was he even supposed to find him.
He then heard crying and he straighten his back, looking around where did it came from. He noticed a small white feather flying around and he grabbed him.
He experienced vertigo, as his whole surrounding change. He was in the middle of a garden, and there were people slowing moving around. He saw the middle aged lady moving toward him. He stepped in front of her, but she did not seems to see him.
"Excuse me? Excuse me?" There was no reaction. Not only that, she walked right through him.
Jim blinked, then turned around. He was trying to grab her shoulder, but his arm just passed right through her. He took his hand in front of him, examining it. He sat down on the bench. He scowled, and then tapped the bench next to him.
He than grabbed the bench, intent to break it, but his hand just went through it again. He leaned back. It was a nice change from the previous place, but he was still no closer to figuring out where he, or for that matter Bones, is.
He allowed himself a couple more seconds, then he stood up, making his way to the inside of the building.
It was a hospital. He walked around, trying to at least find somebody he recognized.
But nobody seems to be able to either see or touch him. At least until he came to the trauma part of the children ward. He looked inside one of the room, when he noticed a guy staring at him, as he tried to sit up.
Kirk, without thinking, walked to him. "It is alright. Calm down."
The boy glared at him. "Right. It is easy to believe that everything is alright when they send a star fleet in here."
"Well..." Kirk tried to explain his presence, "Would it help if I did not know where I am?"
The boy snorted. "That's believable."
"I was trying to save a friend, and I got lost." Kirk said. "Why are you here?"
"Shuttle accident." The boy looked away. "They won't even tell me if my parents survived."
The doctors probably thought they were protecting the boy. "I will need their names." Kirk said, smiling as the boy looked back to him. "How else were I supposed to find them?"
"David and Eleanor McCoy." the boy said.
Kirk froze. This can't be..., right? Be he just nodded, hoping that the boy did not notice anything wrong. "I will find out."
Kirk stood up and he walked out of the room. When he came outside, he leaned on the wall, and took a deep breath. He tried to sort different possibilities in his mind, but there were too many.
It took him longer than he wanted to admit. Normally he would just hack into the hospital computer system, but he could not in this condition. Eventually he found David in the ICU. He was outside of the critical condition, but he was still in the coma. The doctors seems to be quite helpful. He also found out from them that his wife was not in this hospital.
He made his way back. He noticed the doctors inside, being all overbearing, while pretending that they have the best of patients in their minds. Kirk started to remembering his similar experience as he listened to them. He noticed vertigo and he quickly concentrated on the words there, when it stopped. Interesting.
The doctors eventually left. Kirk made his way to the room, waiving to the boy he was by now certain it was his Bones. Or however ones calls it.
The boy looked at him in expectation, but Kirk decided to sit next to him before saying anything. "Your father is in the room 254 in the ICU. He is still in a coma but the doctors think his prognosis is good."
The boy nodded, but he was still looking at him.
Kirk shook his head. "You mother is not in this hospital. I could not find out if she was taken in one of the other hospitals, or..." he let his voice trailed.
"She is dead." the boy finished for him. "Thank you."
He looked around the room. "It's the least I could do." Kirk shrugged. He then stood up and smiled, tousling the boys hair, "Be safe."
The boy grabbed his hear, and glared at him, but Kirk was already leaving the room.
He decided to make his way to the garden, before concentrating on Bones, all that he knew about him.
This time he let the vertigo take him. But when he opened his eyes, he was back at the darkness. He cursed.
"Doctor McCoy?" he yelled into the darkness. "Bones? Answer me?" No reply.
"Alright." He took his breath, changing his thought to the girl he blanched for his current predicament. "I know you are listening! Why don't you come here and explain this?"
There was no answer, and Kirk sighed, his head going through his hair. He was starting to give right to Bones' rambling about the danger of space. The one guy that entered Star Fleet for the lack of options only to get into the danger the quickest.
The vertigo happened again. Jim leaned himself to what appeared to be a doorjamb in a bar. He looked around, unconsciously moving away from other people.
McCoy was sitting there, nursing a glass. There was also bottle of whiskey in front of him, more than half of it already missing. Jim sat on the other side of the booth, looking at him.
McCoy looked up, then decided that he is not interesting enough, and drunk the remainder of the glass, pouring himself another one, but then ended up looking at it.
They were sitting like that is silence. Jim was studying the doctor, who in turned studied his glass. Eventually he drunk this one as well, and put it down.
"What do you want, kid?" McCoy asked, his voice slurred and defeated. He did not look up.
Jim shrugged. "I wanted to help a friend. Now I don't even know where I am."
"Tough luck this one."
The silence stretched, but both of them did severe it for quite a while. McCoy poured the last glass from the bottle. He looked at it, then waived the waiter to his table, ordering another. It took around three minutes for the waiter to bring it.
"If you continue drinking, you will be way beyond the sobering cure in case of a medical emergency." Jim said, as he looked at the whiskey bottle. He tried to move it, but his hand went right through.
McCoy laughed, until he almost chocked on it. There was no happiness on his face. "Not doctors on medical suspension."
Jim scowled: "Medical suspension?"
McCoy drunk another glass down. "Pretty mild for a doctor who killed the patient."
"What?!" Jim said, as he stood up. The made himself relax. "You would never willingly kill a patient." he said, his voice firm.
"Then I guess you don't know me, kid." he said, as he tried to drink another glass, but he started to fall on himself.
Jim came to his side. Vitals were normal, for a person that had too much to drink. He will wake up in the morning, with a big hangover.
The waiter came there. He looked resigned, as he called somebody on the phone. Kirk was sure that it will be taken care of. He started to figure out what is going on, and he finally had an idea of where to find his Bones.
He made a short stop in the darkness again. He let the pressure wash over him. He was trying to picture Bones, lying on the ground. He let the feelings from that time wash over him. And he allowed the vertigo to take him there.
Now he was in front of the small house in what appeared to be the suburbs of some city. Nowhere where he was before. He walked right to it, noticing that he could manipulate the doors to open them. "Bones?" he called out.
"In the back." he heard. Jim smiled, as he walked right through what appeared to be a living room, to the small garden at the back.
McCoy was sitting on the stairs, but he looked up when Jim came closer. "Is this a Starfleet idea of a rescue mission?"
"Well," Jim started, waiting until he sat down. "You were screaming and by the time I came there, you were unconscious. Didn't exactly call Starfleet."
"Well, you are the first person I saw around here." McCoy said, then added quieter. "It was never this quiet."
"I think we are inside your mind." Jim said.
"You are joking." McCoy said.
Jim simply returned his look. He was serious.
McCoy shook his head. "And how are we supposed to get out of my head?"
Jim extended his hand. "Do you trust me?"
"Only as far as I can throw you, kid." McCoy said, and at the same time grabbed Jim hand.
Jim concentrated, and one vertigo later they ended up back at the blackness. McCoy looked around, looking back at Jim with a raised eyebrow. "Nice work, kid."
Jim rolled his eyes. "I am working on it." He started to concentrate on the inside the hut, figuring that it would bring them back.
"A feather." McCoy said.
Jim opened his eyes. He looked at McCoy, then around, but he did not see anything. "Feather?"
McCoy looked at him in surprise. "It is right here." he said, as he put his hand higher.
"Bones? I don't think you should touch it..."
But just before he finished the whole sentence, McCoy hand warped around it. Jim stepped there, grabbing them, as vertigo took them.
Both Jim and McCoy looked where they ended up, and Jim's eyes widened. "No this." he said softly.
"Jim?" the doctor asked, as he came closer, examining him.
"I am fine." Jim said, as he waived him away. But he was only met with doctor's face that was anything but amused. "I just know this place."
McCoy looked again at Jim, then he shrugged, as he looked around the corner. There was a lot of people gathering there.
Jim wanted to chuckle when McCoy noticed that he is incorporate, but knowing what he will witness stopped any kind of feeling of mirthlessness.
"Hello, people of Tarsus IV." the voice on the balcony in front of them started.
Jim's face was taut and his hands were drawn into a fist. He forced himself to relax them. He could feel McCoy turn to him, but he knew that something else will soon draw his attention.
"Everybody run." came the cry from the balcony on the left, "He is trying to..." The voice was stopped by what was heard as the blow to the head. The murmurings could be heard from around them.
McCoy wanted to start walking to the doors leading there, but Jim's grabbed his forearm, instead dragging him to the wall closer to them.
"Jim, let me go." McCoy said, as he tried to make him release him.
"He will live." Jim said, as they came to the wall. "And you can't help him anyway."
"I am a doctor, it is my duty..."
"You can't help a memory!"
McCoy eyes widened, as he stopped resisting, looking at Jim. Jim looked at the ground.
"You must die so that other could live. Signed Kodos."
He then took Jim's hand, and dragged him away from there. They wounded the corner before the shots started. The couldn't see them, but they could still hear them. Them, and accompanying screaming.
"Think of something else." Jim said, as he looked down, dragging himself behind McCoy. "It is how we can get out of here."
McCoy started to think of how he really wanted to be in the medical bay with all the equipment. How he wanted a bottle of whiskey right now. He could feel the vertigo, and they were back at the darkness.
Jim collapsed down, closing his eyes and trying to get his breath under control.
McCoy sat next to him, but he looked at the distance. "You never told me you were on Tarsus."
Jim glanced at him. "You never told me they suspended your medical license for killing a patient."
McCoy tensed next to him. It lasted about a second, but then he released his breath.
"I can bring you back now." the voice said.
They both turned toward it, standing up in the process. The girl from the hut was standing in front of them, looking at them with interest.
"Why should we trust you?" asked Kirk, as he took a step closer, putting McCoy behind him.
"You passed the test." she said. "You are one of us now."
Jim wanted to say something, but McCoy bit him to it. "Then do it already."
She nodded and Jim started to lose the feeling in his body.
The next thing he was lying on the floor. He started to get up, noticing McCoy trying to to the same thing next to him.
"Jim?" McCoy asked, turning to him, so that he could do a visual check.
"I am fine." Kirk said, as he battled the hands away, rolling his eyes. "You?"
"Peachy." said McCoy.
Jim not turned to the girl on the bed. The two women were standing in front of her. The girl dropped her head. "I apologize for what happened." she said. "But considering the circumstances, it is necessary to be extra prudent."
"What did you do?" said Jim, his eyes narrowing. He then signed. "I take it there are no consequences of that you did?"
"You are one of us now." She put the finger on her cheek. "Well, not exactly. You are not one with the core. But otherwise, yes."
"What does that even mean?" asked McCoy, his body tensed. He moved, and then he sagged back. He glared when Jim looked at him in amusement.
"You will finally be able to live a long and fulfilling life." the girl said, her head tilted.
"No thanks to you." McCoy said, as he stood up. "Jim, we are leaving." he said, as he stood up and started to stride outside.
Jim looked at the girl, as he stood up.
"You are free to go." she said, an amusement on her lips.
Jim did not wait another second, as he hurried after the doctor.
The way back was spend in friendly comfort. The first part was reserved for the McCoy's grumblings. But for some reason, the atmosphere was more relaxed than Jim has felt in a long time. The relief was brimming in the air. The second part they walked in silence, both deciding to not talk about whatever had happened.
Their first, and what Jim and McCoy agreed what most likely not going to be the last, unwelcome surprise was, when they were no longer welcome in the main city. They just wanted to come inside, when they met a resistance. Not only was he not letting them in, they ended up being chased away with spears. A situation that Jim found hilarious.
They ended up beaming on the ship, and they were ordered to get through the medical examination, and were ordered to write a report and rest.
The next day they were called to the briefing room. When they arrived there, the yeoman activated the screen and the face of captain Pike appeared on the screen. He seems to have an amusing smile on his face.
"At ease." he told them, as both Jim and McCoy sat down.
"Are we in trouble?" asked McCoy, as he looked at the captain.
"You are not." Pike said. "But I am starting to think that you two are doing it on purpose."
Jim considered the captain carefully, as McCoy just looked at confusion. "So there is a tension between two fractions on the planet."
McCoy looked at him, his eyes narrowing, but he did not say anything. Jim smiled at him, before turning back to Pike with a serious face.
"Usual deal?" Pike asked Jim, and Jim nodded in reply.
"According the the reports that we are starting to get, it looks like it is a decades long civil war." Pike said as he sighed. "They were trying to use McCoy to get their hands on their leader."
McCoy let a laughter escape as he shook his head. Jim was looking at him, thinking he should offer some support.
"Kid, I don't need your encouragement, you can stop saying it." McCoy said.
The silence become ticker. "Doctor, Jim had not said anything." Pike slowly said.
McCoy looked at Jim, who was having an poker face there, but for some reason, McCoy knew that he was analyzing his recent actions in detail.
Jim turned to Pike. "Doctor McCoy is probably just tired, as am I. Maybe we could do the rest of the debriefing later?"
Pike glanced at McCoy, then looked at Jim. He sighed. "It can wait until you are back on Earth."
They exchanged the goodbye pleasantries, when Jim grabbed McCoy and dragged him into one of the smaller observatory deck.
Jim stepped to the window, enjoying the stars for a moment, before he tackled his hypothesis. Which was insane.
"Just because something is beautiful, doesn't mean it won't kill you." McCoy said.
Jim looked at him, seeing him sitting on the sofa some distance away from the window. He was looking at the wall.
Jim concentrated on their thoughts and he asked McCoy in his mind to look at him.
McCoy signed and looked at Jim. He was apparently waiting for something. "Why did you bring me here, Jim?"
Jim smiled, and he sat next to the McCoy. He was intently observing his face, as he let the concentration form the next thought in his head. They were here because it calms his down.
He could see the confusion appearing on McCoy face and he noticed that he could feel it in his own face, particularity on the forehead. He raised his hand up, but there was no lines there. "I did not know you feel confusion in your face."
McCoy looked at him for a couple of seconds, then paled. His lips parted. "No fucking way."
Jim willing his thought to form a 'we are telepaths' in his consciousness.
"We are not, Jim." McCoy stood up, as he become annoyed. Jim could feel it in the way there seems like there was an additional energy in his muscles, how irritation made his teeth feel. "You know what my psi scores are? Nonexistent. And so are yours. There is no way this is happening."
Jim took a deep breath, and he stood up, letting his hands grip McCoy's hands from behind. McCoy sagged, as he let himself be dragged back to the sofa. He covered his eyes with his hand. "I will be dammed."
"Bones, it is going to be fine." Jim said, as he sat next to him.
"If our brains doesn't explode or we accidentally kill each other by getting distracted in the wrong moment or 1000 other things that could happen." McCoy said.
But Jim could feel, that while McCoy was not happy with the circumstances, he also did not feel disgust. He was resigned to the situation until the solution is going to be found.
And if Jim felt just a tiny bit happy about it, well only two people will ever know about it.