Continuing Tales

Conversational Vulcan

A Star Trek Story
by Blue Moon3

Part 15 of 16

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Conversational Vulcan

"I did my best but it wasn't much

I couldn't feel so I learned to touch"

"Snap!" Uhura said, slamming her hand down on the sofa over the pair of kings. With a grin, she looked up at Spock from under her eyelashes. His raised eyebrow reminded her of the way her dad used to be when they played Snap together. At the age of ten she'd lost count of the number of times she'd been told that the winner was the person who said 'snap' first, not who said it the loudest. "Sorry," she whispered in Vulcan, picking up the small stack of cards and placing them at the bottom of her hand.

"Your investment in the game is amusing," he said, watching the cards as he placed down a three.

"Sore because you're losing?" Uhura asked, knowing she was being impudent and cheeky. Spock's attitudes towards such behaviour seemed to have softened in recent weeks. Sometimes it even brought a slight quirk to his lips, almost as though he was growing fond of her predilection for teasing. She placed a seven on top of his three, eyes watching his fingers closely to catch the first glimpse of the next card.

"On the contrary," he said softly, laying down another three. "The effort I put into performance is secondary. My primary interest is in observing the effects of a highly competitive nature on a usually rational human. Besides a striking over enthusiasm, your body temperature is raised and your blood is pumping at a higher rate than normal. I have witnessed these symptoms in you before," his lips quirked again as he watched the growing pile of cards between them. "They are usually a response to arousing physical stimuli. Would you agree that the effects are similar?"

Mouth open, Uhura tried very hard to work out whether he was teasing her or being serious. Without thinking, she put down her next card – and in that moment of distraction, his hand came down on the couch between them.

"Snap," he said softly, his voice it's usual calm monotone. His eyes, however, were very slightly creased at the corners.

"Cheat," she muttered, scowling at the large pile of cards he added to his own hand.

Spock placed a jack between them, watching her once more. "On the contrary, my speculations were entirely honest. It was merely a fortunate tactical side-effect that they distracted you enough for me to gain an advantage."

Uhura shook her head. "Only you could play Snap tactically."

"I will take that as a compliment."

They played in silence a while longer, each winning a round or two. Uhura might have thought that Spock let her keep up, if he weren't so quietly competitive himself. Either way, she wasn't bothered. The longer the game continued, the longer she had an excuse to be with him – and even when they just sat and talked and played the stupid, childish game that had become their ritual, being around Spock still made her feel calm. The rest of Uhura's day was spent in a frenzy of studying and translations and Communications Protocol, as she tried desperately to distract herself from the lancing grief that still unexpectedly struck her from time to time. It never came in Spock's presence, though. Calm passivity radiated from him in gentle waves – not blocking out the emotional ache but neutralising it; treating it rather than hiding it.

Everything had been surprisingly normal since that fateful night when she'd made a serious error of judgement. She still found it frustrating that his touch drove her wild and she knew he found her attractive, but knowing there was nothing they could do about it. But she wasn't going to give up their sparse physical contact.

A pair of kings made them both bring their hands down together. Spock got there first, and suffered the stinging slap of Uhura's over-eager hand on his. His eyes widened slightly, eyebrows drawing together. "I'm sorry, are you OK?" she asked, quickly soothing his sensitive hand with her fingertips.

"Surprise, not pain," Spock explained. He did not draw his hand away from hers. Instead, he turned it over so she could run her fingers along his palm. His ears were tinted green again, something that happened more and more lately. She thought it might lessen as he got used to the contact, but familiarity seemed to only make it more enjoyable for him, as she began to learn what kinds of contact he enjoyed and on which occasions. Spock wasn't the only one who could analyse physical responses to pleasurable stimuli.

Smiling, she rubbed small circles on his palm with her thumb, and leaned in for a kiss. Uhura's left hand leant on the table for purchase as she chastely pressed her lips to his. For once, it was Spock who deepened the kiss, and through the dual contact his mind brushed hers, showing traces of gratitude and simple happiness through the glassy confines of his emotional control. The changes in the feelings she occasionally experienced second-hand through their touch-telepathy had shifted subtly since their first kiss a year ago. She used to feel nothing but purple – which she suspected was lust or desire or something like that. And sometimes blue, which felt more innocent. She wouldn't presume so far as to label it 'love', but perhaps a derivative thereof, or love in its developmental stages. As the months flew by, much too quickly for her own liking, the blue remained and the purple still persisted, but there were now more complex layers. They formed a foundation, on which Spock built happiness or pleasure or joy, sometimes gratitude, and very recently a sort of bittersweet regret that was very pale blue-green.

For a man that everyone else assumed felt nothing, it was an impressive emotional spectrum. Uhura had a theory that Spock's tight rein on his emotions from an early age had actually had the opposite to intended effect – placing so much emphasis upon them had developed them further. They were controlled, but within the confines of that control they were many and complex.

Uhura moved closer again, cards falling to the floor. She pulled away, glancing down at them. "Whoops. Sorry, I'll get those."

She tried to move away, but Spock's other hand had come up to hold the top of her arm. He was looking at her with that same vague curiosity he had used during the game. But his fingers were running appreciatively over the palm of her hand, and the olive flush to his skin and dilation of his pupils made her suspect he was more deeply invested than she had anticipated. Spock's hand ran from her arm to her shoulder, then down her body until it rested on her hip. There it paused, a firm hot weight that eventually shifted lower again to her thigh. Through the contact of their hands, he was pushing something at her. Blue. Intense, stunning, surprising blue, barely threaded with glittering purple. And she knew what he was thinking, even if he himself didn't have the vocabulary to put it into words.

"Spock," she warned softly, unable to keep the disappointment from her voice as his fingers ran over the bare skin of her leg. "It's not fair to tease." He didn't stop, and Uhura swallowed, wishing she could have some of his self control. "You can just go and meditate for a few hours if this doesn't work out, but I have to go home and have a cold shower and feel miserable. It's not fair, Spock."

When it was clear she would not move towards him, would not encourage his tentative advances, he moved to her instead. Ignoring the cards scattered between them, he slid close enough to feel her leg against his and kissed her again. Against her lips he whispered, "You cannot touch me. In fact, if you could remain entirely still, that would improve the chances of satisfactory completion by approximately thirty-seven per cent."

"Spock, seriously? I'm fine. You don't have to do this."

He pulled back enough to look at her properly. His hand moved away from her hip, brushing hair back from her face as his eyes studied hers. A fingertip brushed her temple, and she felt him. His mind was not the rush and panic it had been when she had tried this. There was passion and desire and the not-quite-love swirling together inside him, but they were all where they should be – tucked away in a place where they wouldn't overwhelm him. She could feel that his control didn't extend to his physical responses, and found that just that knowledge gave her an added thrill of pleasure. "I want to," he whispered into the small space between them.

She took a deep breath, turning her body to lie comfortably on the sofa, slipping one leg beneath him and then crooking it at the knee to hug his waist gently. "OK. If you're sure. I'll do my best to behave myself – though that sort of defeats the object of the game."

His reply was muffled against her neck, as his hands resumed their overly tentative exploration of her body. "Small steps, Nyota."

Lying half-naked on Spock's sofa, his heavy weight half-resting on her, she pondered that Spock was not the efficient lover she might have imagined. Were she to focus purely on his deficiencies, she would say he was a little clinical, much too silent and needed pointing in the right direction on more than one occasion – this last, however, was true of almost anyone losing their virginity.

Uhura, however, had always considered herself a 'glass half full' kind of woman. And, sweeping his small defects aside, she recalled the intense effects of feeling his mind and his severely tested emotional control as they made love. He was not clumsy, and he quickly forgot to over-analyse the experience, instead enjoying (and perhaps trying to suppress) the sensations as and when they struck him. Furthermore, he had not immediately fallen asleep or thrown her unceremoniously from his quarters following his orgasm. He had politely enquired whether she required further stimulation and, having given a slightly amused confirmation that it had indeed been a very enjoyable experience, he allowed himself to slump somewhere between her and the sofa back.

His eyes were open, and he was watching her – as he had throughout. His hot hand rested on top of hers over her abdomen. Uhura's other hand ran over his silky hair. They had been silent for ten minutes and, through their connection, she suspected Spock was experiencing the Vulcan equivalent of after-glow.

She chuckled softly, and he raised his head to look at her the right way up. "You are amused." Perhaps it was her imagination, but she thought he sounded very slightly worried. Maybe telling Spock that it was possible to laugh at people as well as with them had been a mistake.

"I was just thinking this would be a perfect moment for your mother to open up a communication."

Dark eyebrows drew together slightly, and Spock lifted himself upright. "We should re-dress," he said, clearly not seeing the joke.

Lazily, muscles feeling somehow simultaneously limp and stiff, Uhura reached over the side of the couch for her panties. She skimmed the plain white cotton up her legs, watching Spock with a small smile dancing over her lips. Vulcans were odd. Her touching him completely overloaded him, but he had no shame in wandering around his quarters buck naked.

Not that she was complaining.

Somehow, when he pulled his shirt over his head, his hair remained perfectly in place. Women everywhere would kill for his secret, she thought absently, then chuckled because after-glow had always made her giggly. He glanced at her as he stepped into his underwear. "You are behaving in a peculiar manner. May I ask the cause?"

Uhura shrugged, zipping her tunic back up. She pushed herself upright, crossing her bare legs and tugging her skirt down so it actually covered something. "I'm happy."

His head tilted to the side as he frowned and resumed his seat beside her. She couldn't help reaching out a hand and resting it on his warm, muscular thigh, running her thumb over his sparse leg hair. "You are not usually happy?"

"I'm extra-happy." Her lips twisted into a half smile, eyes twinkling. "If you want me to be specific, human orgasms release endorphins which makes us a bit silly."

"I, too, am experiencing a release of endorphins. But I do not believe my behaviour is adversely affected. Would you agree?"

Uhura looked at him closely, considering his question. She ran a hand down the side of his face. "You look relaxed. Your posture isn't as stiff as normal, and your face is properly relaxed. Usually it's just impassive, but you still keep it kind of stern. When you're completely relaxed, your lips naturally turn upwards at the corners." She smiled brightly, leaning in to kiss those up-turned lips. "It's nice. I like it."

He took her hands gently in his. That relaxed expression hadn't lasted long. He was serious again, and Uhura couldn't help the small sigh that escaped her lips. "I fear I did not perform well. And that you are disappointed." His gaze dropped, thumbs running over the backs of her hands. "I wanted very much to do it well – for you."

Uhura tugged gently, pulling Spock into an embrace that he did not reciprocate. Not that it mattered. She was perfectly happy with the feel of his body against hers, her arms circled around his waist. "You did just fine. And, you know what's really great? You'll get better!" She pulled back, enough to look at him so he could see her teasing smile and calculate just what her ratio of teasing-to-serious was. "Practice makes perfect." She pulled one arm away, bringing her hand up to ghost fingers across his temples. "How are you doing up here? Everything all right?"

"My control is in tact. Barely." His own form of a teasing smile. The right corner of his mouth turned up, his eyes met hers directly. One of his rarest expressions. "When you leave I will conduct further meditation. When we initiated intimate physical contact, I found meditating on self control helped me to develop a coping response for suppressing my body's reactions."

"Well, I'm not sure I like the sound of that," Nyota said, her thumb gliding over the shell of his ear, watching as the stimulation brought green blood to the surface, making the scant skin flush green. "I kind of like your physical responses."

"Such strictures will allow me to concentrate more on your pleasure, without being a slave to my own responses. I did not think you would object."

Grinning, she gave him one last kiss before standing. "You're right, as usual. Meditate away."

The following day, Uhura didn't think the smile left her face for so much as a minute. Life was good. She had been able to give Gaila a graphic run-down of her first sexual conquest since starting at the Academy – no matter how conflicted Gaila was as to whether she actually wanted to hear the information or not. Finals were coming and she was beyond prepared. Her secret source suggested she had received a second personal recommendation for service aboard the Enterprise and that, furthermore, it may or may not have come from Captain Pike himself. And her day was ending with Communications Protocol, a class easy enough that she could daydream about Spock just as much as she wanted.

McCoy sat beside her, and was complaining quite happily about damned nurses who couldn't do their damned jobs. Uhura had no problem smiling and nodding because, quite frankly, nothing would bring her down.

"Well, I hope you're satisfied!" Gaila announced, sharply cutting across McCoy as she climbed over them both to reach the seat at Uhura's other side.

The doctor quieted abruptly, looking up at the Orion with a raised eyebrow. "Me? What did I do?" he asked.

"Don't worry, I think she means me," Uhura said, still grinning.

"You're freakin right I mean you. You and your lover-boy and your constant, detailed, obsessive descriptions."

"You have a boyfriend?" McCoy asked, smirking slightly.

"It's complicated," Uhura replied.

"Complicated? It's obscene. I had to sit through a lecture with him for two hours. And he looks exactly the same as he always does, but you just know he's all smug at having got laid." Gaila pulled out her PADDs and stylus, punctuating her sentences. "Oh, and that thing you said he did, with the..." she waved her hand around the side of her head, indicating her ears. "He caught me looking at him, and he totally did that. Uhura, he looked at me and thought of having sex with you. That's just disgusting."

"Maybe he was just reacting to you getting so caught up thinking about it," McCoy suggested smoothly. "After all, Vulcans are partially telepathic."

Both women turned to gape at him, Uhura's eyes darting about the room to ensure no one had overheard. "How did you know?" she whispered, a hand clamping down on his wrist.

"Because I'm not blind and neither am I stupid – contrary to popular opinion." The doctor looked distinctly smug as he sat back in his seat, resting his PADD on his knee. "I was married for twenty years. I know what a poor bastard looks like when he's whipped."

"Who's whipped?" Kirk asked, sitting down next to McCoy. Uhura turned to the front, pointedly ignoring him. If Kirk wanted to sleep around and it didn't do anything to Gaila beyond dent her pride, that was between them. But Uhura didn't have to like it. Especially not when she knew Gaila was still sulking, and probably for more intense reasons than she was letting on.

"This new girl Gaila's boning," Bones lied smoothly. Uhura raised an eyebrow, but kept her eyes front. Sometimes, just every once in a while, she could understand how a woman could love McCoy.

Kirk made no response. Uhura met the doctor's eyes briefly, and they shared a small smile. As the lecture began, he leaned in towards the woman he was glad to consider his friend and whispered, "Glad you finally rolled him into bed. Poor bastard needs someone to loosen him up a bit."

Conversational Vulcan

A Star Trek Story
by Blue Moon3

Part 15 of 16

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