A SONG OF DISTANT SHORES
said the little mermaid, "and as the foam of the sea I shall be driven
about never again to hear the music of the waves, or to see the pretty
flowers nor the red sun. Is there anything I can do...?"
said the old woman, "unless a man were to love you so much that....
his thoughts and all his love were fixed upon you...."
--Hans Christian Anderson, The Little Mermaid
far out in the field of
stars, where the void is black as the deepest eye and as cold as man
can measure, it is very, very wide. So vast indeed that no
can sound its breadth and no probe can plumb its depth. We must not
imagine that there is nothing out in space but barren, sterile
planets. Oh no! The galaxy teems with life! The
singular minds and beings roam the cosmos, so far beyond our ken that
we take them for but random flukes of nature. Twinkles,
meteors, quasars, and nebulae do we see. But in the rampant
of our ignorance, we fail to note the special signatures of life
abundant--like ours, only different. There in the midst of that endless
expanse, spins the planet Vulcan, burnished fiery hot in hues of purest
cinnabar, home to a race of sentient men, like us, only not so very
different at all.
wilds of that
vacuum of space, the planet Vulcan spawns the most extraordinary
sights. There are chasms leading down nigh to the molten core
pinnacles soaring close up to touch the heavens. Exquisite
forests of dry crystal, ancient as creation, shimmer delicate and
inviolate beneath the baking sun. Plants grow sinuous and
waving and dancing at nature's merest fancy, bending--never
breaking--under the harshest storms of sand. Birds
sparkling silver soar far above the ruddy crags, then dive deep into
the roiling oceans to feed and sleep and breed.
the surface of
sister planet, stands the city of ShiKahr. The race that lives there
prides itself on clearest logic. A logic that would strive to
pierce the starry veil of this grand universe and divine all its
ancient secrets and immanent mysteries. And then to take
mysteries and to transform them to neat, precise, binary data, freely
accessible to all.
in the center
of all this
logic resided Sar'ek, son of Skon, as cool and as stolid as the crystal
gardens that surrounded him. An Elder of his clan.
to two of the proposed Intended Heirs, begotten not elected, as it had
been for untold centuries through in the planetary past.
service as a
Council Elder for many years. His wife was not of his world, and so he
entrusted the rearing of his sons to T'Pau, the honored matriarch and
Voice of the Council. She was a wise woman, and exceedingly
of her high status. On that account she wore twelve Seeing
upon her garments. Others, including S'haile Sar'ek, were allowed to
wear only six. And the Seeing Stones served her well, and she
used their power sparingly.
especially deserving of
praise, however, for the rearing of the Intended Heirs. They
four stalwart little minds and souls, but Spock was the stoutest of
them all. Outside, he was as austere and reserved as all the
rest, but inside his hidden heart was torn between two worlds--between
the soft, green grass of Earth, and the packed, red clay of
Vulcan. And yet, in an irony his young mind could
begin to comprehend, he was equally alien to both. An unknown
everywhere, even in his parents arms.
of the raging
war within, as if to refuse to acknowledge its presence was to will it
impossibly away, he locked his forbidden feelings deeper still inside,
and tried with all his might and vigor to lose the key in some deep,
bottomless pit. But that deep pit was within him, you see,
his task had failed before it had begun. And so he cleaved
fiercely unto the hostile world of Sar'ek, relegating those feelings to
the pit as well, and his red-blooded mother wept alone in silence.
the age of
two, all day long
he studied and meditated within the walls of his father's abode, much
as we do from day to day at school. And as the teachings of
learned pushed aside the traitorous emotions of the headstrong, he
began to hear the Song of Vulcan inside his head. It started as faint
and insubstantial as that glimpse that you catch in from the corner of
your eye, so ethereal that the moment you turn to look, it vanishes
forever. Over time, the Song grew to an elemental hum, and
to weave itself into the basal cadence of his being. By his
seventeenth year he had achieved his goal. He had become one
to gasp in wonder
as he allowed his mind to slip into the deepest levels of meditation
and communion with the profusion of people in the world he had, by
default, come to claim as his. For even as an infant, he had
sensed that though this Song might be in his mind, of his mind, through
his mind, it was merely passing through. A transient, a
placeholder for a Song he had never heard, which would soothe his
restive spirit with the lullaby of a home he had not yet come to
world swung complacently on its axis, in syncopated time with the
Song. Since the time of Surak, it had offered order,
belonging, repose and a chance to better the whole.
being of clearest logic should desire.
heart cried for more.
four Intended Heirs
grew up together in location, but even more apart in vision. Within the
walled garden of the enclave of the clan, each potential Heir was
allotted a plot of fertile ground, wherein he might shape the dirt, a
microcosm of his world, as he saw fit. The eldest, S'ynet,
Swan arranged his in symmetrical rows and columns of tender, newly
sprouted life, precise to the millimeter, perfectly balanced in three
dimensions. He thinned and weeded carefully, logically, selecting the
strongest to live at the grave expense of the lives of their own kind.
Swan, husbanded no
life, but arranged the soil of his plot into a pointed tower, a
monument to greatness, power and supremacy. But no matter how
moved earth and rock, his efforts stood cruelly dwarfed in the shadow
of those soaring crystal arms that embraced the little alcove around
all sides and held it in.
Sar'ek went his own
way entirely. In his allotted land he rolled and wallowed in
clay, sensing every wild impulse of every available neuron, intent on
experiencing every permutation of venal existence ever known to his
people in the time of the Old Before. He reveled in his body
under the fierce regalia of sunlight, and communed with scents and
sounds under the cloak of night. It was said that he nurtured
the Song of Vulcan, but feelings--parlous, atavistic utterly taboo
feelings. This was never said within the range of Sar'ek's listening
S'pock, son of
Sar'ek, did none of these things. He cared nothing for the
empirical tenets of husbandry nor for the art of sculpting a world to
the form of one's conceit. Instead he tended and he
and he sheltered the native seed that lay dormant within the sod, and
watched with intent fascination and endless patience as the natural
life force of the world revealed itself unto fruition before his eyes.
He documented the objective with pedantic scientific precision, yet for
as many measurements as he dutifully recorded, there was always
something more, some wondrous, ineffable quality of life itself, which
eluded any description. And this fascinated him to
his family and
for the plot of life that was dependent upon his succor, and for one
other thing only. It was a statue, carved of timeless m'rbyl
stone, and placed in the cool of his mother's water garden, under the
watchful arms of the Terran trees, planted there despite all illogic of
time and expense.
ages past, but
the m'rbyl stone had fallen to Vulcan through a spacewreck. A
Terran ship, sent on a Maiden Reciprocity voyage, powered with a first
generation warp reactor, charged more with ambition than with
forethought, had imploded upon shutdown and martyred every member of
the mission. But a few fragments of jetsam had survived the
The planetary geologic experts had defined every parameter of the
stone's structure and quantified every one of its properties to the
last significant digit, but it was his own mother, Amanda of Earth, who
had told those learned men its common name. Marble. Recorded
the experts here forever after as m'rbyl.
polishing it reverently down to its satiny center, the Vulcan master
S'lyejah had carved a monument from the stone. He had shaved
every unnecessary molecule of stone until all that was left was an
immortal idol in the form of a rosy Terran man. A representation of
Everyman and No-man, departed from Earth to enter the largess of the
greater universe as a proxy for all his kind--and to succeed for his
people, albeit to die, quite incidentally himself, in the process.
Everyman was shaped in
hues of pink and alabaster. The lines and ripples of his
fell as deceptively soft as syrup of P'petmah when it flowed just
before the harvest. But when they were touched, they were
and harder than crystal, the matrix set fast in the heat-tempered
solidity of the re-entry blasted m'rbyl stone. The daytime
dressed Everyman in golden brilliance. At nighttime the rusty
rays from T'Khut shrouded his form, but he was always still
unmistakably the epitome of Man himself, even under her bloody glow.
almost flawless in
its glory, but for one single, blatant scar. Across the
the curving breast, a charred seam of rock marred the perfect blend of
rose and creamy stone. The seam had blackened and widened in
violent fall to its foreign resting place, and seemed to threaten to
split Everyman quite in two.
this unfeeling effigy of his buried half-heritage, flung from Earth
against its will. By day he would sit by it and study the
material that his father had selected with regard for his
He would run his fingers over the hard chest, the solid form, and last
of all, the fatal crack. By night he would go to his mother
hear her tales of the other world, which resided in his genes
somewhere. Surely it must, somewhere?
his soul so much
as to hear of this home that he had never known. He entreated
mother to tell all she knew of its lands, its towns, its men and its
beasts. She told tales as natural to us as breathing, as foreign to him
as flying through the air. She told tales of water falling
the sky and of a sun, which rose red as it should, but coyly,
capriciously changed to yellows as soon as she reared her shining
head. Where the gravity was so light that walking seemed like
skipping on springs and where laughter rang as loud as The Song and
reigned as high and wafted as freely as logic and sobriety did
here. All of these magical mysteries of geophysics, S'pock
reduce to equations and finally comprehend. But what he could
understand was how they endured without The Song.
cripple. Humans were born without telepathy, sad creatures as
they were. But it seemed so incongruous that these wild,
beings could live in their passions, extol the splendor of love and
joy, without ever having known what it is for two to truly become one
in a meld. Or for billions to live as one in The Song that
embraced his people.
encompassed the katra
of every living Vulcan on this plane of existence, young or old, asleep
or awake, on world or off. It was in constant flux, ebbing
swelling with each death and birth. Its pitch and hum were ever
changing with the character of the thoughts and the essential nature of
each of the katras that summed to make it whole. It could be ignored or
amplified, and with training even focused and directed to bring two
distant minds into resonant communication across great
It could be blended into a meld or blasted into cacophony by
disaster. But while two or more Vulcans lived and breathed in
same universe, it could never, ever, ever be destroyed.
intricacies of The Song at an early age was a point of great
significance to Sar'ek, for it had been a foremost
His ability with The Song would be a measure of S'pock's very
Vulcanness. For was there anything more inherently Vulcan
be one with The Song? T'Pau had melded with S'pock and
pronounced him A't'hye--in harmony, his humanity caressing, not
bludgeoning The Song--and therefore ready for the Kahs-wan preparation
months before it would be time. And Sar'ek was content with
youngest son, in a way in which he had not been before.
had no ear
for The Song and
little unaugmented voice. When all was still, The Song was
serene, and they were very close, S'pock could barely discern the
faint, foreign notes of his mother's mind, warbling in counterpoint
within the matrix of The Song around her. But when he touched
skin, or better still, in private moments when he was allowed to touch
her very mind, then he heard such a great, joyous symphony of vibrant
thought and shameless emotion that he thought his katra would burst
right then and shame them all. When he removed his hand from
temple, each and every time he was left awed and alone to ponder the
mystery of how he could possibly have been born of blood that lived
these passions every day.
if his mother of
no psionic ability were able to move him so, how much grander would it
be to feel the strength of his father's essence combining with his
own? This he would never know.
moments of meld with
son or husband could Amanda hear The Song herself. The Song
which she had left home and hearth and welded her deaf soul unto
Sar'ek's, until the end of her time should come.
with interest, despite this lack, she seemed almost always--happy.
as with all
age and die and pass each one unto the next. And soon the
Intended Heirs would matriculate and be free to explore the universe
beyond at will. While excitement was a bane, scientific
was to be endorsed, and so the four readily made a pact each to tell
the others what he had seen and done.
first to go
He left to learn the practicalities of dywnnbratach farming on
Andor. When he returned, he spoke at length of brilliant
and deepest living greens, which colored every moment in the
daylight. He spoke of cutthroat violence, barely restrained,
illogic revered almost to the point of worship. He spoke of
cities of tunnels and habitats in the trees. But he brought
news of Earth.
to leave was
left to conference with the dwellers in the clouds. Upon his
return he coolly pronounced Stratos much like Vulcan, but chillier in
climate and less disciplined in spirit; devoted to form more than
function; more serene than cerebral, too self-isolated to put to any
greater use the lofty constructs that might be developed
S'myn saw no reason to return to space. And so he stayed,
his fathers before him had.
day with no fanfare
or plan. For his part in the pact he sent one telemissive
back. "Question: Why didn't they tell us it could be like
this? Answer: Perhaps they never knew."
And he never
last the day
came when S'pock
received leave to journey from the world. The old matriarch
called him to her presence, and conferred upon him a robe smattered
with polished stones, all symbolic of the clan and his place therein.
this is too
heavy to wear all day," said S'pock to T'Pau.
all Vulcan now;
this no longer concerns thy whims. The greatest privilege
the greatest responsibilities," replied the matriarch.
willingly would have
shaken off this robe and ritual and arrived in the vestments of his
mother's home. This onerous robe labeled him apart, foreign,
segregated before he had even arrived. But T'Pau's command
law, and there was nothing more to be said.
question of where he
would go, only of what he would do. He had chosen a field
in comparative anatomy and physiology, to be held in the Starfleet
Headquarters Medical complex. And so at the appointed hour,
bid good-bye to the lifeless statue of Everyman, the hard stone of the
sculpture clacking against the harder stones on his robe, and traveled
to meet the real thing, verbum caro factum.
yet he never slept. He could not take his eyes from the view
screen, anticipating the first glimpse of his unknown Earth.
it finally appeared, softest azures and milky-whites swirled sharply
against the starry field, the realized actuality almost startled him.
transfixed, as they
sailed in to land. The globe was lost in a haze of billowing
white; then they broke through to a great, sweeping desert expanse of
plains and mesas, not so very unlike the land that he had just left, he
noted as they flew onward to the west. They soared over a
of mountains. On the other side the land was covered as far
the viewscreen could image in most directions with mortar and metal,
glass and grids of the San Francisco metropolis.
ahead the ocean lapped the land, blue and flat and dotted with
countless little boats, each isolated, an island unto itself.
Thousands of flitters buzzed around in the sky in a dizzying dance of
came over the
speaker, jolting him once again. The port pilot would assume
control and guide them into dock. English not
hadn't he expected that? For all his logic, it was still a
surprise. And so the ship was drawn into the Starfleet
had been a
three-day voyage and
he had slept none, but he couldn't peel his senses away from any
experience of his alien home, which had not learned to know him
yet. When the door opened, it was not the cold that assaulted
him; he had expected and prepared his body for that. Instead
was the smell. The wet, cloying odor of salt and fuel and a billion
particles he could not identify, born of so many aliens in so closed a
space. It was nothing like the smell of his mother as she
him against her in her lap, and he longed irrationally for something of
home. The Song played in his mind, now a poignant reminder of how far
his body was removed from what he had always known. He fingered the
robe, felt the reassuring roughness of the familiar fabric under his
touch and it seemed no longer quite so heavy on his shoulders.
one paid him
much heed; aliens
were commonplace here. As days went on, he thought to expect
of his so learned professors to turn to him in recognition and seize
his jaw. "Why look, class! This is no
alien! He is as
human as vulcan. See here, and here, and here in the
cheekline. He is one of us. Spock, why didn't you
us? Welcome home, son!" But no such thing ever
each day passed, much the same, unto the next.
one day an
raised. A clever and troubled boy had escaped from the locked
reintegration wing. How was one mystery, but the more urgent
was to where he might have run. The boy was disturbed, a
traumatized survivor of Kodos, still stunned by the slaughter he had
witnessed and the violence of the ego dissonance that forced
cannibalism leads to in most moral men. Visual and sensor
showed nothing, so all available personnel were summoned for the search
on foot, by sight, by Braille if necessary. All volunteers
was S'pock who
found the boy,
almost on a hunch. One of the perimeter electromag towers had
field frequency slightly off from the rest. Only vulcan ears
trained to perfect pitch could have heard the subtle
He aimed his tricorder. The readings were suspicious for
something in the field queering the pitch, but the proximity to the
electromag scrambled the data too badly to say what--or who--it might
be. Any anomaly in an anomalous situation might be
significant. Resetting his tricorder, Spock confounded the
with no difficulty and opened the gate to see the boy lying there.
standards he was a
boy. And a thin and wasted one at that. On Vulcan
have been charged as a man, expected to have passed the kahs-wan years
ago. But S'pock could barely credit that this fragile waif
have strolled a garden path unsupported, much less climbed, crawled and
crept to evade the guards and travel this far. He was naked,
course. Hospital garb set off an alarm outside the walls, and
there was a gash in his forearm where someone, presumably himself, had
cut out the security implant. But the largest gash was from
head. It ran out over his head of golden curls and covered one side of
his scalp and it pooled and clotted on the ground. S'pock
the boy up in his arms.
skin was fair
and creamy, but
cool, much too cool even for a human. He was light as a
toy and as motionless as the statue in the garden, his beautiful eyes
just as hauntedly unseeing. But unlike the ghosts of
human souls that swirled around the statue in the garden on any quiet
night, this human must not die. Time was short. Spock shifted
for the carry. The blood began to flow afresh, and S'pock
one hand to the wound.
soon as he
touched his hand
down near the meld points, the boy's Song exploded into his head. The
melody was alien, but the rhythm was one he thought he knew, although
he could not say where he could have heard it before. It sang
strength and valor, pain, and loss, joy and love, and of an indomitable
will never to surrender. A song in this world doomed to play
forever to ears as deaf as stone. He shifted his hand and the
Song grew louder still, wailing in his head, is if intent to pour
fourth now all the moods and thoughts and emotions it had ever known,
which had been bottled up, awaiting the one who could appreciate its
lungs began to burn
with need for breath did S'pock realize he had frozen in the
moment. Still rapt in the exotic siren song, he placed one
in front of the other to carry the boy to safety.
buxom woman, a
unbroken black eyes took him from his arms and inside to the doctors.
Only when the contact was lost and The Song was but a memory punctuated
by the thick smear of blood over his robe and hands did Spock realize
the second oddity. He could hear the woman's Song too,
not in contact, although she had already left. It was serene
soft, a maternal caress and a kindly caution. Her voice cut
his head, as clearly as any vulcan Songmaster's. "Careful,
one. You know not what these humans can do to an ordered mind
such as yours. Drink deep or taste not, and in drinking deep,
must always be prepared to drown." And then she was gone and
the Song of home remained.
S'pock's body acclimatized to the Earth. His movements, once
too exaggerated in the lower gravity, flowed easily and normal once
again. His lungs adjusted to the denser air, and he
the smells and the tastes of trace elements in the air and water until
he noticed them as little as any human. His accent diminished
he let his hair grow longer, over his ears, just the tips, that is. But
it was clear to all, and most of all to himself, that this world was
not to be his home. Why then did the Song of one lost Terran
youth resonate within him night and day?
returned to ShiKahr to discover that Vulcan had grown much smaller in
his absence. The deep, polished reds of the desert had paled
anemic under the constant sun. The towering pillars no longer
inspired, but fenced. The wild beasts of land and air and childhood no
longer seemed as exotic or intriguing as the potted Terran
chrysanthemum with all its rings and layers and silken
Even his mother's stories of the Earth that she had left held no more
interest for him. That was her Earth. His Earth was
another foreign land. And worst of all, the chiseled statute
changed as well. It stood erect still, in the same spot of
same rocky garden, deaf and blind as always. Its skin was
smooth and creamy, its lines still strong and fair. In the
sunlight it glowed in the same pinks and golds. But now
of whispering of things yet to come, it spoke only of the melancholy of
thing that might have been.
statues are not to
be the sphere of Intended Heirs. The Vulcan Science Academy
awaited his enrollment, and S'pock followed dutifully after S'myn and
S'ynet. "You are the only one of my bloodline now," his father said as
he left. "You must devote yourself, not for yourself, but for
for the one who was, but is no more your brother, as well as for the
rest of the clan."
devote themselves for me?" Spock asked.
no answer, but turned away in silence with the traditional parting
into the Academy
for the good of the many. The others would ask him of what he had seen
and done in his time on Earth. He told them--when pressed--of
Starfleet, the clinics, the city, the landscape, the water, but he told
them nothing about the youth whose MindSong haunted his nights and
pacified his days. He had always been silent and thoughtful, but now he
was even more so. Rather than the companionship of his peers
turned to the knowledge of machines.
brain of the great VSA computer banks, linked to those across the
Federation, he was able to find and follow his young man--James Kirk,
as it turned out--as he grew and developed far across the lightyears.
He watched as James finished school and enlisted in the Starfleet that
had rescued him from Tarsus so many years before.
could enter any databank. He started with the medical files and carried
on from there. He gathered data and demographics.
pictures, vids and holos. On one such clip he heard James
for the first time, on others he heard the voice change from the
wavering tones of adolescence to the confident tenor of
But none of this technology could return for him the beautiful MindSong
he had heard in the fleeting touch of years long past.
who saw him
at work, long
after study hours had ended, took him for a student of unusual
diligence. "Look," they said, "how he commits himself to the
pursuit of the applications of logic. Truly he should be the
Appointed from among the Intended, for already he dedicates himself to
our good." And he could say nothing to correct them, for the
emotion driving his obsession shamed him, but that was not the worst.
The worst was when it occurred to him that he was most alone in
this. For James Kirk could know nothing of him, could know
nothing of what they had shared. James could not remember
could not dream of him, could not ache for him as he ached for
James. And the pain that stemmed from that realization was
could never, despite all his training, quite suppress. What
of vulcan was he then?
was not for him,
but for the one from whom he could hide nothing. As the
Appointment Selection process progressed, T'Pau summoned S'pock once
again. The air was cold and dry, a bitter wind squalled
the rocks that night, making a sound that our human ears could not
hear, when he came and knelt at her feet. As she touched his
this time, she saw and heard it all. He knew she must, but there was no
way out for him. Her silent voice was as clear in his head as ever he
had heard any in his ears.
to this human's Song."
question; S'pock gave no answer.
logic in following his movement, unless you intend to go back to him."
could be no
argument with that.
"Thou art best
qualified of all the Intendeds, S'pock. Thy own kin require
presence here. And there is no logic behind leaving thy duty
hear the Song of one man. The good of the many outweighs thy
desires. Thou hast claimed the rights and privileges of an Intended One
of Vulcan. With that comes obligation as well. Unless thou
to relinquish thy position, pouring thy time into this vision is a
waste like unto pouring precious water onto sand. Nothing can
grow from it. Nothing ever will."
I do this?"
Spock thought to her. "Can I abdicate my position and go?"
she spoke next to him in vocal words, it sounded artificial, far less
real than it had as pure energy within his mind. The frailty
venerability of her body were as deceptive as the sly smile of the fox,
for of all the minds of all the telepaths in the land, hers was among
the most potent. "I have the power to allow or disallow as I
I will not restore thy place. Should thou do this, thou will
longer be thy father's son. Thou will be from Vulcan, but not
Vulcan. Thy intended would be within her rights to refuse
challenge and to allow thee to expire in pon farr, or at a stranger's
hands. This world will surrender thee as well."
moments when we can
feel out lives change, almost see the cogs and gears and they grunt and
grind to a halt, pause, and creak to turn in the other
Perhaps it is not that way for all vulcans, but for S'pock of mixed
blood, he could see those gears reverse in front of his eyes as clearly
as he heard her mind voice. As clearly as he had heard James Kirk's
MindSong. "What must I do to go to him?"
not of mixed
blood, she did not react at all, but spoke dispassionately of his
choice. "Thou must surrender the harmonic of your resonance
his Song. Thou knowst too much of our people, our secrets, to
Sing with him."
if you take
away our Song, what is left? The Song is what cleaves us one
to the other."
answered, "Thou wishes
to live as a human, then thou must love as a human. Thou
have whatever qualities of him that were so unique as to produce this
special Song, which you cannot rend from thy soul. They are
there. They still create the same unique Song, only your mind
will be deaf to it. And as for how thou shalt win him, I
answer, for how humans choose their mates is shrouded in mystery, even
to me." She gave no indication of finding any humor in this remark.
the rest of
will remain unaffected. Thou will hear the Song of your
homeworld, but not the silent Song of him. And thou mayst meld with
him, but he will find thee cold and clinical. He will hear no
Song of what lies beneath.
S'pock of Vulcan.
Art thou prepared to discard all thee hast on a vision that walks your
mind? A vision who grows, and learns and dreams and knows not
stung, but the
sting gave him strength he needed. "I am."
so it is
done. But know
this, S'pock. Should thou fail--should thou not win the love
this man so that he is willing to forsake all others and to love thee
and only thee with his whole soul, so that he takes thee for his
solace, his succor, his mate, then thou must die. If there
come a time when he declares that he loves another above thee, and
takes that other before thee, then thou shalt be dead by morning."
S'pock agreed quietly.
staff twice on
the ground. She touched his mind and he felt
odd that he should feel nothing from such a grievous loss.
Seeing Stone from her raiment and passed it to his hand.
go, Spock, formerly of Vulcan but no more. This stone be all
take from Vulcan, and all that shall ever be yours of it again should
you fail. Go and do not return unless it be with him as thy mate."
stone upon his clothing, and so, go he did.
came up upon
the James Kirk
riding his starship in the sky, and James gleefully clutched him to his
side and took him in as his. For James was drawn to this dark
fallen from the heavens who had left his world and all he knew to be a
part of his. Through time and trial James came to trust him
did his own self, to depend upon him as he did water, air or food. Two
souls as one, they rode into giant nebulae, wove though the tightest
asteroid belts, skirted the hottest coronas and never were they
apart. Together they were what is greatest and truest and
constant of all. And while one had the other, never did they
affection for this dark man, who revealed so little of himself, James
Kirk arranged that he should stay with him always. He had
quarters prepared, which connected, through a hatchway, with
his. Oftentimes when all was still and none had
their might, James would put his arm close around his Spock and hug him
tightly to his breast. At such times, when his heart was
and aching from love, he might look into those timeless, deep dark eyes
and ask, who was this man, this manna who had fallen from heaven, just
for him, to land so happily at his feet?
Spock had no
reply, for it was
not of the Vulcan race to speak these thing into the cold, unfeeling
air. These things were for The Song of the Mind, The Song of
minds knit as one. And his Song sung out loud and
vibrated though the passageways and cargo bays and echoed from deck to
deck. It was so loud that it shamed him for the logical being he had
once professed to be. It was so loud that the more sensitive
humans could sense it too. Not hear exactly, but perceive it
nonetheless. Something more primal, some atavistic sense of
belong given unto the compassionate to know those most dear to their
hearts. Chekov grinned, Uhura wondered, and McCoy
shook his head.
adaptation of T'Pau,
Spock's Song, however long and long it cried, would be forever kept
from James Kirk himself. Kaidith. And so the
smile fell on a face that could not answer and the Song fell on the
lonesome ears of one who could not hear and the pining heart of one who
could not know to answer back.
day it became
clear that Spock
must marry. Forcing the words from his lips that were never meant to be
heard outside the mind was an anathema, one he thought he never could
have managed, but the self-preservation drive of the pon farr was
stronger than even he had known. Thus he shamed his former
and people throwing himself at the mercy of his t'hy'la.
needs of one were
the same as the needs of the other, and so together they returned to
his ancestral lands. The sands burned hot, but his blood burned hotter
and T'Pau took no pity on his plight. She would not credit
scene before her eyes as testament to the pact having been fulfilled.
gave his life
for mine; what
greater love is there than that? Is that not proof
Not that it mattered to him. James Kirk was dead.
was over as well, but he wanted some testament, some memorial to endure
of the time they had had. Some proof that it was not all for
of claiming thee
above all others. He did not challenge to have you for his
own. Thy life is forfeit, as a consequence. I
forfeit, Spock agreed
with no feeling. And so he went back to the ship, to lie in their
suite, among the things of James, wrapped in the smell of James, amid
all he had left of James, to die.
fate or luck
or simple country medicine had smiled on them and there was to be no
death, but joyous reunion instead.
rang out to fill
every corridor, to fill every ear, and the clamor of the Song was so
great and so loud that it spilled forth from his lips, his face, in
shameless exaltation. It was a burst of all he wished to say,
all that was locked in the language of his heart and mind, the fathers
of Vulcan never dreaming it would be necessary for it to cross the
lips. So it did silently, in the mute form of a smile.
Jim it was
the end of a
rainbow, that smile contained all he had ever wanted to know.
gave his empty heart solace as sweet as the nectar of the rarest
hyacinth in spring. But in less than a heartbeat, it was gone
if it had never been, living on only inside his memory until he had to
ask himself whether it had been real, or only the wistful mirage before
the eyes of a man crawling desperately through a long, lonely desert of
are dear to
me," said James
Kirk, folding Spock closely to his breast. "For you have the
spirit and are the most devoted to me and I to you, even unto
death. You bring to my mind the memory of a younger time when
was hurt and adrift and a maiden I shall never see again touched my
mind and healed my hurts. I know not how she did such a
thing, but in all my travels in all the galaxy, none but you has
touched me as she did that day."
he knows not
that it was I who
brought him home when he was adrift, thought Spock. And he
not that I touched his mind that day, perhaps far more deeply than he
can ever know, for it has touched me far more deeply than anything I
had known existed. But how could he claim to be a part of
miracle, when The Song was gone between them forever?
journey through the
galaxy together was ended and the twain were again to be
"Come with me," James implored. "Stay by my side, where fate
fortune and all civilized reason would place you best. They
promised me a great surprise, something I will love even more than I
love my ship and crew, upon my return, but it will not be anything if
you be not there to share it."
will you go
with you, for there
is nowhere I would rather be. " Spock said with his tongue.
do you not love me best of all, was the question, which played in the
lonesome lyrics of his MindSong. But the Song fell, gossamer
as always, adrift upon the bitter wind.
they sailed upon
the solar tide to dock in the safe haven of the Starfleet
There was great rejoicing all around at the wondrous event of their
return. Great men and fair ladies bowed and sang the praises
the Hunters, home, safe at last, from the hills.
James Kirk aside,
with Spock shadowing always by his shoulder, and brought him to a place
where deepest secrets brewed. "Look here, James!" They flung
aside the curtain, and with proudest strut and show, announced the
model of the refitted Enterprise. Against the black velvet sky of the
drapery, it sparkled new and bright but delicate as a dream.
she will be overseeing the project." A woman of ebony hair,
dark she almost faded into the curtain, stepped forth and extended her
hand and mind.
Kirk. "It's you who succored me and soothed me with your mind
those year ago. In all my time and travel, in all that I have
seen and done, I have encountered nothing more beautiful that the feel
of your mind against mine as you lifted me from where I fell."
I am so
happy," he said to
Spock, "for my hopes are fulfilled. You will rejoice with me
my happiness, for your devotion to me is great and sincere."
wish you all the happiness your human heart can hold. And if
have now found it, my hopes for you are fulfilled," said Spock with
open honesty, although it cracked his heart in two. But the
vulcan heart is strong and trained, nigh impermeable to emotion, and
the traitorous Vulcan genes failed to take Spock then into the gentle
mercy of death, but lived to mock him as his broken heart continued to
beat, to watch James Kirk happy in the arms of another.
the eve of
their wedding day,
Spock made his preparations to leave James Kirk and to leave this plane
of existence as we know it, you and I. The latter gave him
pause; to die was but to be no more. But the former, the
rent his soul in two. If there be something,
that great beyond, to enter it alone gave him no pause. He
been alone before and he knew that condition well.
James Kirk to meet
whatever may come without his t'hy'la by his side, that pain he could
not stomach. For he had sworn an oath to defend James Kirk
all his might and main, and he railed against the cold hand of death
that would keep him from his solemn pledge.
under the brilliant
stars of night and stared toward the heavens, toward that planet that
fixed his fate so firmly. It brought unto his mind his first
voyage across the void and his first tentative step out among the halls
of Starfleet, which would become his home. He could not
his choice, but neither could he do aught but rue the loss.
had abandoned home and land and family. Never again would he
the silver birds soar across the ruddy face of T'Khut or filter the
musty soil of his little garden through his hands. Never
would he hear his mother's voice as she held him to her breast, or
smell the rich scent of Pbryllia in bloom on a warm summer night. These
things he regretted, but they were not what brought that sensation that
humans know as pain.
pain he felt
cut sharp into
his soul, but it stemmed not from that which he had surrendered long
ago. Oh no, this pain came sharp and fresh and new with every
breath. Every breath he drew was one nearer to the last he
breathe in the same air as James Kirk. Each twinkling star
at him and taunted that this was the last night he and James Kirk would
share under the same sky. It was the last time the moon that
James Kirk's face would shine upon his own as well. This was
living, breathing agony of that which is not yet dead and, but dying a
slow and gruesome death, struggling painfully every moment, screaming
for mercy, a second chance at life. He rent his clothes, the
vulcan robe retained from long ago, and cried out with all the power of
The Song not to be separated from his t'hy'la over such a cruel and
senseless trick of fate.
was not T'Pau
who answered, but
Sar'ek, his father, summoned by The Song. "My son, my son,
you not your life away. For I have gone unto T'Pau and made
her a dreadful deal. I have relinquished all our clan's
birthright to the Council Chair and made myself a peon at her
feet. For this she has rescinded your fate on one condition
only. You must leave James Kirk at once, tell him you never
him, that it was all but a ploy. Do this and you may return
Vulcan and the embrace of your now so humbled mother and me."
cannot. For to do
so would be like unto driving a dagger into his tender heart.
how can I rip the heart of one I hold so dear, solely to save my own?"
said. "Look deep into the Seeing Stones, which T'Pau sewed
your person when she made this wretched trade, and tell me what you
see. See if it is not like unto what I have foreseen in mine."
the tatters of his
ruined garment and looked deep into the center stone of dullest garnet
red. There he saw his t'hy'la, within the ship he loved and
cherished, blown by a million trillion dynes of force into the solar
is to be
his fate, if you are not to survive to save him from it."
can I know
this?" said Spock, his Songvoice barely above a whisper.
faith in the
mysteries of our people, as he has faith in you. If you leave him now,
you will live to see him grow and prosper, and perhaps to save him from
if you cast
yourself upon the stars and leave him to the force of T'Pau's
What-Was-Meant-To-Be, he will surely die."
if I rend
from him the faith
in one who has been half his soul, what will happen to him
But Sar'ek had no answer. For this was purely a human mystery
for this the Vulcan stones were dark.
silently back into the
domicile where James and Lori slept breast to breast. They
so calm and peaceful, her song was so nurturing and full that it pained
him almost unto death to hear it Sing for James. Soft as the
Western Wind, he kissed the fair and slumbering brow, then sat a
thoughtful vigil by his side, contemplating all that was and is and
never now would be, until the first rays of the morning sun threatened
to burst upon the horizon.
he shook one
warm and muscled shoulder firmly with his hand. "Admiral."
awoke with a
start. The woman at his breast dozed on. "What is
must take my
leave of you now."
stab of pain
through James Kirk's breast woke his new bride with a cry.
you leaving me,
just as we are about to embark upon this new frontier? Now
need you most?" His gentle face was matted with confusion and
dismay, darkened with fear of the one thing he had never before had
cause to dread.
voyage together is
over. Instructive though it was, I must now return to
Vulcan. I do not expect you to understand, for you are but a
Kirk cried after him, his heart running blood and tears.
through the door and gone as the red morning sun breached over the
great Pacific Ocean.
lifelong t'hy'la, Jim
drifted asea, unable to find an anchor within himself at all.
around was grief and loneliness and pain. And his Song soon
changed to grief and loneliness and pain, driving his patient bride
away and leaving those who knew best about such things to question his
very fitness to lead others.
so alone he
twisted on his
empty sheets, wasted, impotent and in despair, wondering when his, long
useless years would come to an end.
stood S'pock, back
on the barren plains of his father's planet, but with many more long
years before him to bear than any flitting human soul could conceive.
parents that were no
longer family, the parents who had given everything of value for this
life that he no longer wanted, were unbearable. And the nights--the
nights were even worse. He had not even the solace of
surrendering to the physical expressions that grief or pain may employ,
for on Vulcan such things are not the way. Only the memory of
fate that awaited James Kirk, should he fail him in the last, kept
S'pock living and breathing at all.
in the end,
the pain was too
great for one of even quasi-human genes, and to Gol he went, where
there was no feeling, no grief, no pain--only cold impartial logic.
the pain without
kept him hard at work at his pursuits. Again he was the model
acolyte--a shame he was no longer of Intended blood, else he would have
made a very fine Elder indeed.
years, the pain
no longer burned him day and night. In comparison, he took
for success. And so he readied himself to kneel before the
and Wise, and submit himself to the plane of total logic.
the hard clay
of the ancient
land of Gol, Spock reached out to say his last good-byes. He
stretched his mind out towards those who had suffered and laughed and
fought and triumphed with him in those halcyon days aboard
He relived the subtle Song of each human friend who had touched his
skin, his mind his heart, Chekov, Scott, McCoy, Uhura, all the souls he
had known so well, but for last he saved James Kirk. Logically for
last, he told him himself, as by all dictates of reason, it should be
futile, so why expend the time? But you and I might
it was because he had heard the human prophecy that on one great day,
the last shall be first, and little would it hurt to try. Or
perhaps it was only because he knew his katra wouldn't bear the pain,
and so he completed all other tasks before it would snap asunder and
whither unto the clay at the sudden strain.
what a sharp
surprise he got
when he groped blindly for the essence of James Kirk.
proud and powerful, as a monsoon in the desert swept over his mind and
infused his entire katra it was James, but more. James was
flailing, a novice on his own ship grown apart from his own crew. He
was sailing once again into the maw of disaster, but this time so alone.
as he tuned
his mind to that
wave after wave crashed down upon his brain. Wave after wave of cold,
inhuman logic, some how connected with James Kirk, some how connected,
albeit harsh and unfeelingly, with everything that lived and breathed
and moved and stood and formed and withered and dissolved in this
galaxy. It was more powerful than the joint force of all the
minds of the masters, and it was headed straight for Jim.
a flash of
clarity, such as
nothing had been clear to him in a very long time, he knew that he must
touch this entity. And he must, whatever the cost, keep it
touching James Kirk. The memory of James Kirk, soft, open
vulnerable hung before his mind. He fingered the Seeing Stone
his robe. It grew warm under his touch and he bowed his
head. He did not need to look within the image to know that
time it prophesied was now.
mistress of Gol read
the war within his mind upon the lines of his face. She took
thoughts, but saw nothing of the bonds of the t'hal'zed, only the
vehicle of ultimate knowledge with James Kirk incidentally in its
path. Of course she would, her mind was geared to receive
but logic. She dropped her hand.
him. T'Lar heard the unvoiced thought.
bargain. He chose another before you. If you return
you will die, perhaps not in the morn, but soon--and all alone."
I will die.
But it will be
having lived my life with him, and I will have saved him from the
blackness that awaits him otherwise, and that is a thousand times more
preferable to the slow dissolution upon these sands that never were and
are not now of me."
returned unto that
glistening ship. That beacon that might never be extinguished
through even the wildest storms, the coldest winter, or in the darkest
friend, I have missed
you so," cried James Kirk as he clutched his t'hy'la to his
breast. And in that instant James felt the sweet return of
something he had recognized only in its absence. For in the
intimacy of that embrace he felt the gossamer whisper of a memory
through his mind. A memory as old and deep and strong and
any he could relate out loud, but this was a vestigial memory of the
heart and soul. A memory of a Song that had reached him when
was all but lost, even too himself.
back and stared
eyes wide with wonder at Spock, who had returned to him.
you! All this time, it was you who haunted the shadows of my
mind, not her. Never her. It was you, all along,
loved and strengthened me, but I was too blind to see."
I. Once my mind could sing to yours, but that Song is lost
face in rapt amazement. "But I hear, I feel, I see it
now. How could I ever not have known?"
him back and
felt the same stirring within his soul. The stirring of an
intimacy born not of his old world, but of his new one. For
feeling he had neither name nor explanation, but he wished nothing more
than to live out this mystery with this man for the rest of whatever
days they would have.
he and James
Kirk loved each
other freely in every way, as hard and fast and true and long and pure
as is seldom seen in our world today. They were to each other
that two beings can be, and more, without the Song of Vulcan, but with
a Mindbond all their own, framed from their own certain harmony and
forged in the fantastic fury of the V'ger effect. And there
beauty, peace and infinite satisfaction. There was joy and
and dreams unfurled. And there were all these things in abundance, and
neither knew loneliness in those transcendental days for which it
have no time
here to tell the
tales of those days, for the adventures that they had in the time that
they had would fill volume upon volume until they filled this
room. There were tales of monsters with no faces,
hearts brighter than platinum or gold. There were tales of
worlds and other times and other dimensions that as of yet have not
been named. There were men and cities and civilizations saved
others that could not be saved, but will live on remembered in those
books that could fill this room.
spilt and wiped
clean away, there was strife and trial, problems solved and blinding
new discoveries made. There were fears and loss and regrets
joys. There were wild days and peaceful nights, and some of
opposite as well. They lived and loved as one heart, one
one will, and merged their bodies as freely as they merged
deeds. The good was doubled and the bad was halved, for that
always been the way of burdens truly shared.
destiny shall not be allayed. Upon that fated day that when
stepped into the reactor chamber, what must be became what
And on that day the heart of James Kirk split in two, for one without
his bondmate is not one.
on that day
the m'rbyl statue
split along the blackened crack and fell, in two pieces, back unto the
clay. The wise men of Vulcan came to stare, but none could
any explanation from within the realm of science, and so they returned
forever beyond their ken.