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Disclaimer: The rights to Star Trek belong to Gene Roddenberry, and NuTrek belongs to J.J. Abrams, Orci, and Kurtzman.

Summary: Spock is currently enamored with Cadet Uhura. But the Commander is given the shock of his life when a young first year cadet accidentally collides with him in the hall of Starfleet Academy.

.~.

Ch. 3: Enter Cupcake

“Whom were you expecting?” The Vulcan countered once he found his voice. He did not respond to Kirk’s invitation to shake hands. Kirk shrugged, lowering his hand to his side. The human took another look at Spock, and soon a spark of recognition flared in his cerulean eyes.

“Have I met you before?” Kirk asked, cocking his head.

“Affirmative,” Spock responded. “Precisely one standard year and thirteen days ago, you collided with me in the academy foyer, knocking me down.” Kirk winced as he remembered that very moment.

“I really am sorry about that. I swear, it was an acc-”

“It is of no consequence,” the Vulcan smoothly interjected.

“Right…” Kirk said slowly. They stared at each other, sizing up each other. “I guess you want to get down to business,” he said, breaking the awkward silence. “Follow me.”

Not really knowing why, Spock did, as he was rather fascinated by this human that had elicited such an emotional response in him. Kirk led him over to the computer he’d been using.

“Now, I have a print out of what you asked for,” Kirk said, shoving a sealed envelope into Spock’s hands. The Vulcan just blankly looked at him. “I know it’s not my business, but I was just wondering what was up with this Guardian thing because it sure was a bitch to hack,” the human continued. “I mean, I understand if it’s confidential. I totally get that. But, seriously, what could you want with a couple of deep space coordinates?” Spock could scarcely believe his ears as the golden youth prattled on. “Are you going to head to those coordinates and check it out?” Kirk didn’t pause for an answer. “No? Okay. All I really care about is my payment. That will be 500 credits, please.” He held out his hand. Spock just stared at Jim Kirk as if he’d been speaking in archaic Klingon.

“I am afraid I am not familiar with the concept of the Guardian,” the Vulcan confessed. Kirk groaned.

“You’re kidding! Are you working for someone? Is that it? Do they know what it is?”

“I am not working for anyone,” Spock supplied. “I believe you have mistaken me for someone else. I came to the computer lab seeking solitude outside of my quarters. Imagine my surprise when a young and foolish cadet confessed to the crime of hacking in front of his superior.” Kirk visibly paled. Gone was the affable friendliness. Instead, he stiffened, regarding Spock with guarded wariness.

“Oh shit,” the human muttered, realizing his mistake too late. It had been an honest mistake. The Vulcan had appeared almost precisely when Kirk's contact had scheduled to meet him. How was Kirk supposed to know that the Vulcan's arrival had been a coincidence?

“Indeed,” Spock agreed, raising an eyebrow. Disappointment flooded his most precise senses as the Vulcan realized that the man who had evoked such an intense feeling in him was in fact, a criminal. “Starfleet regulations clearly state that I should arrest you for hacking,” Spock informed him.

“But you wouldn’t!” Kirk gasped, shooting him a wounded look. “We’ve only just met. We haven’t even exchanged names.” Spock hadn't felt it necessary to do so. After all, he knew exactly who this cadet was.

“You are James Tiberius Kirk, son of late hero George Kirk, womanizer and troublemaker who has not of yet declared a major.” Spock glanced at him, disapproval apparent at the human’s lack of direction.

“And you are Commander Spock, head of the 3-D chess team, on the science track, graduated with honors and accolades galore, designer of the Kobayashi Maru…” Kirk recited all this from memory. “One might make the case that you are the most intelligent being in all of Starfleet. Need I go on?” Spock shook his head.

“I am afraid that flattery will not aid you in your poor attempt to escape the consequences of your actions. That strategy may have succeeded when dealing with others, but I assure you that I am immune to your charms.”

“I doubt that,” Jim murmured under his breath.

“You will be punished for hacking into a restricted space, Cadet. You can also be certain that Admiral Pike will be informed of your transgression.” The fight dimmed in Jim’s eyes somewhat.

“Commander, what will happen to me after my arrest?”

“Most likely you will be expelled from the academy,” Spock told him honestly.

“But it’s my dream to graduate and explore the vastness of space. You wouldn’t want to ruin that dream for me, now would you, Spock?” Kirk’s earnest eyes pleaded with the Vulcan.

“You are the one responsible for your actions, not I,” the commander replied.

“Couldn’t we just make a deal and forget that all of this ever happened?” Kirk wanted to know. Spock raised an eyebrow in protest.

“Vulcans do not ‘make deals’ with criminals.” Kirk bit his lip, desperately trying to think himself out of this seemingly no-win situation. He decided to resort to his old standby.

“What if I could get you anything that you desired?” The human offered.

“Anything?” Spock echoed. He was horrified he was even considering the cadet’s tantalizing proposition.

“Anything you want,” Kirk promised, his voice low. “What is it you want most in this universe, Commander?” Spock just gazed back at him, at a loss for words.

Cadet Uhura's face materialized in his mind, flooding him with a stab of guilt. She'd made it clear that she'd wanted a relationship with him for a few weeks now, but they were not official as of yet. So why did Spock feel like he would be cheating on her if he requested to touch Kirk's hand with his own? Whenever he touched Uhura's hands, he felt a pleasant contentment exchanged between friends. It was similar to that of his mother's nuturing touch. But he'd never felt anything like he'd experienced a year ago with Cadet Kirk. Perhaps he'd imagined it, but somehow Spock doubted it. He only needed another chance for contact with the human to find out...

The tension in the air was so thick, you could barely disrupt it with a phaser set to stun. Spock couldn’t understand why he felt so inexplicably drawn to this immoral human. It was most illogical! Practically everything he’d heard about James Kirk had been negative, save for his high test scores. But if the man truly was as intelligent as his scores claimed… Spock entertained the fleeting thought of asking Kirk to play him in a game of 3-D chess. He wondered how his logic would match up against this man’s unpredictability, and hoped that he would have the chance to test that scenario.

The young cadet took a small step toward the Vulcan, who could not bring himself to back away, even though he knew Kirk was doing anything he could to escape arrest. But if Kirk chose to take advantage of him, despite his greater strength, Spock would be at the man’s complete mercy. He was willing to risk any advances in an attempt to brush with the cadet's hand...

Bzzzzzzzzst.

The odd moment between them was shattered when the lights flickered and suddenly vanished. Kirk and Spock were left in total darkness, before the emergency lights clicked on moments later.

“Wow, that was weird,” Kirk muttered.

“It was rather odd,” Spock agreed, wondering what could’ve caused such a power failure in such a secure location such as the academy. "Do you have a hypothesis, cadet?"

"I don't see how any of our enemies could've infiltrated our defenses here at the academy, not with the amount of personnel and protection we have," Kirk mused. "We have practically the most advanced security measures in the universe." He bit his lip. "Unless it was an inside job..." He and the Vulcan shared a knowing look. If it had been an inside job, the mastermind would certainly know how to knock out the security cameras. Until they were restored, who knows what sort of illegal activities would commence?

Just then, five cadets rushed into the computer lab, their phasers drawn. Kirk’s eyes widened with recognition as the first man moved towards him.

“It had to be you,” Jim groaned, cursing his bad luck. The leader of the group immediately grabbed Kirk by the scruff of his neck, stating,

“Come with me, Cupcake!” He plunked Kirk down into a chair in front of a computer. “Bring up the coordinates and no one gets hurt,” the man ordered. Kirk cursed the day he called this man ‘Cupcake’ back in that bar in Iowa.

“He has them,” Kirk choked out, indicating Spock, who was still clutching the envelope Kirk had given him. “Is this about the money?” Kirk wondered as the burly man snatched the envelope from Spock’s hands. “Cause if it is, I could lower the price for the job, just as a favor to you guys.” Cupcake turned to his posse.

“The Vulcan complicates things,” the hulking youth muttered. “Should we take him with us?”

“We have no choice, boss,” one of his underlings answered. “He knows about the operation.”

“I guess it’s not about the money,” Kirk guessed. No one paid any attention to him.

“A measly, missing cadet would not cause Starfleet to launch a full scale investigation, especially someone who held the ‘fleet record for most demerits,” Cupcake pointed out. Kirk glared at his captors, but surprisingly did not retaliate. “However, a commander would. Especially when he’s the only half-human, half Vulcan freak show in the universe. I’m not sure if it’s worth-”

“Hey!” Kirk snapped. “Leave him alone. He has nothing to do with this. He was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.” If it was one thing Kirk hated, it was getting innocents into trouble as a result of a stupid mistake he made. He didn’t want Spock to have to suffer for his actions. “Let the Vulcan go and I’ll do whatever you want.” They laughed.

“And let him report the operation to Starfleet command? We’re not that stupid.” Kirk glanced at Spock, his brow crinkled in worry.

“I’m sorry I got you into this,” he whispered. “I kind of have a knack for getting into trouble.”

“That is most apparent,” Spock commented, his expression schooled into a perfect blank mask. But secretly he was pleased that Kirk had defended him and demonstrated remorse. Perhaps there was more to this human after all.

Their attackers took it upon themselves to handcuff Kirk and Spock together. The Vulcan blushed as Jim’s hand brushed with his own, thanks to the close contact the hand-binders offered. That answered that question. Spock definitely hadn't imagined the warm, shivery feeling he received from contact with Kirk's hand.

“You’re right,” Cupcake decided, “they have to come with us.”

“Wait!” Kirk persisted. “I can make you a deal if you just let Commander Spock go…” Cupcake shook his head.

“I’ve had enough of your lip, Kirk. Stun ‘em, boys.” Kirk glanced at Spock, his gaze tinged with guilt. Spock was about to reassure him that he was not at fault for their situation, but he never got the chance. Several blue stun beams blinded the human and Vulcan, and they crumpled to the floor, unconscious.

.~.

End Ch. 3

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