Characters: Kirk, Spock/Uhura
Word Count: 495
Summary: Post-XI. He watches, he reminisces, he learns, he hopes.
Disclaimer: Not my characters.
A/N: I find outsiders' perspectives of a relationship immensely interesting, because it forces them to reconsider their own experiences. Hope you enjoy this short (Albeit a bit sentimental) character analysis :)
They captivate him.
Kirk cannot contain the sense of wonder that grasps him as he watches their exquisite, never ending interactions: the confident smiles Uhura sends Spock as they softly converse at their neighboring stations; the unpredictable shifts of her hair during work that prompt him to rigidly yet delicately push aside the strands obstructing her eyes; the way her fingers occasionally drape upon his shoulder as they walk alongside each other in the corridors; the identical poise with which they stand together, their arms subtly touching, as he dictates his Captain's orders upon the bridge.
Perhaps they observe him observing, perhaps not, but Kirk's eyes nevertheless defy the minuscule amount of control he has acquired since becoming Captain. Again and again, his gaze wanders towards them, lingers upon them, wanting to absorb and to understand every facet of their relationship without omission.
Gradually, he finds himself wanting to clench at another reality.
It is now often that Kirk envisions his own parents in the same two roles, dwelling in that other timeline where tragedy does not intrude upon their story. He imagines that similar, gentle touches were shared time after time upon the U.S.S. Kelvin; that the couple also danced in their own Mess Hall 20-some years ago when thought to be alone, gliding adjacent to the stars in soft steps only familiar to them. His half-Vulcan officer may possess a less humanized personality than his father, but the silent looks he gives to his female counterpart are no doubt infused with the same amount of devotion, the same amount of unspoken human emotion that George Kirk bestowed upon his wife.
So this is the L-word, he nearly gasps in reflection, his mind viciously colliding with the one four-letter word he could never fathom without challenge. It is the one sentiment Kirk presumed Spock incapable of expressing, though that theory now exists as an error in which he continues to admit defeat. And somehow, he has managed to equate his former nemesis with the father he has never known, all through the most simplistic, foundational of human feelings that Kirk now fears himself incapable of.
The recognition chills his thoughts.
Yet, it also triggers a new revelation, one that delivers a sense of protectionism somewhat contrary to his impulsive tendencies. No matter what, he promises to himself with an additional dose of vigor, he will guard the two of them, prioritize their lives in front of his own - not merely in his duty as Captain, but also in his responsibility as a friend. For their future children - pointy-eared, caramel-skinned, whatever beauty genetics allows - deserve to physically witness their own parents' story instead of being relegated to imagining it, as he had been.
It is the least that he can provide: a step towards articulating, no, towards perfecting his own flawed definition of love.
And, hopefully, it is a level of affection that will be eventually returned.
He wonders if he will be called "Godfather" or "Uncle Jim."
ETA (05/29/09): evrymemry wrote an absolutely darling companion fic to this. Highly recommended!