Separation Anxiety
Michelle Perry


McCoy was naturally nervous about seeing him again. It would be the first time they’d seen one another since the breakup. Sure, Christopher had taken it fairly well. He’d seemed hurt at first, of course. McCoy could still remember the look in his eyes when Chris had looked at him through the viewscreen – piercing, and just as moving as if he’d been right there in the room with them. He still remembered the pain in Christopher’s voice when he’d said, “Do you feel the same, Leonard?” But when Jim had explained things – how he really cared about the Admiral, but that his relationship with Leonard had moved to a level that made him want exclusivity – Pike had nodded his assent and wished them luck.

Jim had been relieved. Ecstatic even. McCoy hadn’t wanted to rain on his parade, so he never mentioned anything, but he’d felt the entire conversation had gone a little too smoothly. Admiral Pike had struggled through eighteen months of grueling physical therapy after the surgery, re-training his body, and somehow managing to regain the same astounding level of physical fitness he’d had before his capture. If anything, he was stronger, faster, and had greater endurance than he had before, and considering the rigorous demands the Fleet put on its starship captains, that was damned amazing. Dr. McCoy knew something about human nature, and a man like that didn’t just walk away from something so easily. So, it was with great trepidation that McCoy agreed to give the admiral a tour of the re-vamped medical bay on his first day aboard the Enterprise.

“I can’t see why you’re so nervous, Bones. He’s not going to bite your head off. He’s here to help!”

“I know, I know, the Meridian situation is delicate. But I still don’t understand why an ambassador wasn’t sent along to-“

“He requested the assignment, and Starfleet Command thought he deserved it, since he only got to command the Enterprise for about ten minutes. Besides, he’s got plenty of experience with-“

“Yeah, yeah, he gets people to listen to each other. But as for him biting my head off, we’ll see about that.”

Jim had patted him on the back, told him to stop worrying, and run off to inspect the rest of the departments in preparation for the admiral’s first day. Still, despite the doctor’s nervousness, the first meeting went well. Pike greeted him warmly, admired the minor changes McCoy had requested to be made to the design of the new medical bay, and complimented several of the staff. He’d confirmed that McCoy would be attending the formal dinner that evening with all the senior staff, and left to take a look at the Engineering decks. That was it. No resentful glare, no snide remarks, no outright anger. The dinner went just as well. Pike was the epitome of grace in his sleek gray and white dress uniform, complimenting Captain Kirk on doing an excellent job of running the ship, and basically charming the hell out of any of the officers (like Mr. Scott) who hadn’t met him during the crisis.

Jim all but said “I told you so” when the dinner was over. The mission went off with hardly a hitch, too. The Enterprise was used as a neutral location for the meeting between the two disparate factions of the Meridian planets. There was a little bit of a scuffle between some of the delegates, but between the Golden Boy and his older and wiser advisor, peace was established with only a few scrapes and bruises (including a cut to Admiral Pike’s arm that was easily mended).

Even though everything went just as amicably at the celebration of their successful mission as it had at the beginning of the trip, when McCoy turned in for the night, he couldn’t shake the eerie feeling of being in the eye of a storm. He slept fitfully, and had a bizarre dream in which he thought he saw Christopher standing over his bed leering at him, just before a giant wasp stung him in the neck.


When McCoy awoke, he felt groggy and mildly disoriented. The doctor in him analyzed the feeling and determined the symptoms could either have been caused by excessive alcohol consumption, or a heavy sedative. Since he’d had neither, he was at a loss to understand why he felt like this.

He tried to sit up, and a sharp jolt of fear ran through him when he realized he couldn’t. He did a quick evaluation – arms were stretched above his head, splayed out wide, in a way he NEVER slept. He tugged, and felt synthetic straps rub against his wrists. He tugged harder – no result. There was no more than half an inch of give. His legs were spread-eagled, and there was even less give from the bands on his ankles. He was alarmed to note that he was also completely naked.

Oh, Jesus Christ. He felt another pang of fear – this time not only for himself, but for the ship. There was an intruder aboard! The crew was in danger. He needed to warn-

“Hi, Len.”

McCoy froze, fists clenched, and his stomach did an impressive flip. Oh, God in heaven. He looked toward the sound of the voice, and his fears were confirmed. Admiral Pike stood a few feet from the bed, watching him with a slight smile hovering at the corner of his mouth. Leonard gritted his teeth and put on his most authoritative voice. “Chris, what the hell do you think-“

Quick as a flash, Pike rushed to the side of the bed and slammed his fist into the doctor’s stomach, hard enough to knock the wind out of him. His instinct was to curl up, but of course, he couldn’t. His body shuddered, and he gasped for air. “Don’t you fucking take that tone with me, McCoy,” he said darkly. McCoy felt a whimper escape, and his body now shook for a different reason. “What the fuck do you think this is, anyway?”

“I… I really don’t know, Chris,” he said, forcing himself to speak more calmly.

It didn’t help. Pike punched him again, hard. He waited until McCoy could open his eyes again, before saying “You don’t get to call me that anymore. You lost that right when you ripped my heart out!”

The doctor winced, and struggled to control his shaking limbs. There was something truly terrifying in the look of wild fury shining from Chris’ steel gray eyes. Against his will, McCoy’s mind ran through all the progress reports he’d read outlining Pike’s return to full health and strength. He was stronger than McCoy, trained in about 178 more forms of combat than any doctor would be, and he had clearly lost his mind. Dr. McCoy tried to speak, but he had no idea what to say.

“I’m going to show you, Leonard. I am going to show you what you lost. What you destroyed!”

McCoy flinched. “Chr- Admiral this… this isn’t… you don’t want to do this.”

“Oh, but I do.” He pressed his palm against Leonard’s abdomen, and slowly moved down until he was touching the trim line of hairs just below his navel. McCoy could feel his body responding to the gentle touch despite himself. Pike smiled. “I can see that you really want it, too.”

McCoy shook his head immediately. “No, you know I-“

“I know, Leonard. I know. Your body aches for me, even when your mind doesn’t. What I still don’t know is why?!” Suddenly he grabbed McCoy’s cock at the base and squeezed tight. He yelped and squirmed, but there was no way to escape. Pike glared down, that wild fury back full force. “Why would you turn Jim against me?”

WHAT?

“If you didn’t want me anymore, you could have just stepped out of the threesome. I would have shared. I’m not really a jealous man! But you! You couldn’t share. WHY did you take him from me?”

“Chris- ah!” He squeezed hard, and Leonard lost the ability to speak for a moment. Pike released the pressure to a tolerable level, but it was still all he could do to keep breathing.

“You were saying?” Pike asked calmly.

“S-sir, I… I didn’t turn-“

“LIAR!” McCoy winced. There was no accompanying squeeze, but the sound of Pike screaming was enough to set him shaking again. “Jim Kirk would never leave me! He’s the most honorable, beautiful, courageous man in this universe!! He SAVED me! He came aboard a Romulan ship filled with hundreds of futuristic demons, and he brought me back to life.” Pike let him go, and reached up to grab his hair in an unforgiving grip. “That’s how I know you’re a liar. You twisted him. Jim would NEVER abandon me!!

He stood up suddenly and moved away from the bed. McCoy tugged frantically at the straps, praying fervently that something would break loose. God only knew what he would do against Pike if he did get free, but it would have to be a better chance than this. To his dismay, nothing gave even a little bit, and Pike was back in just a few seconds. He held up a small, black ring of cloth and leered. “This is going to help you learn not to try to fuck me over in the future, Doctor.”

McCoy shuddered again. “Admiral, please,” he said, struggling to keep his voice steady. “Please think about what you’re doing. Think about your future! You have something great in Starfleet right now. Don’t throw it away, just because-“

“You think I care about that?!” he shouted. “You DESTROYED me, do you understand that?? You stole the brightest star in my galaxy, and I’m going to make you PAY for what you DID TO ME!!”

Leonard cringed away from the madness he could hear in Pike’s scream. He stared straight up at the ceiling and focused on breathing. His mind reflexively turned toward his mandatory Captivity and Torture unit at Academy. Rule number one: Do not panic. To panic is to invite death. Keep your wits about you, focus your mind, and survive. It had made perfect sense in class, but now it seemed like a cruel joke. Especially since his C & T instructor was standing over him screaming bloody murder. God damn Starships for having a soundproofing option in executive quarters.

He felt the Admiral slowly stroking him. He willed his body not to respond, but biology had its way despite him. He felt Pike slide the cock ring on him, and he clenched his fists. Please, don’t do this. It almost came out aloud, but he clamped down on the words. Rule three: Do not beg. He could almost hear Pike’s voice, ringing through the lecture hall. It almost never works, and it is not worthy of you as an officer and representative of the United Federation of Planets. In some cultures, such as the Romulan or Klingon structures, it may lead to worse treatment. If, however, you feel certain that innocent lives may be saved by humbling yourself, use your best judgment and do what you must. When Pike bent over and slid his mouth over McCoy’s cock, a sharp jolt ran through him, and he wondered how well pleading worked on Federation admiralty.

Chris sucked him roughly, seemingly concerned only with drawing down as much blood as possible. Then, suddenly, he backed off, and began tracing slow lines with his tongue up and down McCoy’s shaft. Leonard felt the urgent tingle low in his gut that seemed to force his hips to move. The sound of Pike’s satisfied chuckle put a stop to that, though. Leonard endured the merciless teasing, trying as best he could to remain still, betrayed only by the occasional involuntary shudder when Pike touched a particularly sensitive spot, or changed speed. After what seemed like hours, the soft, almost playful licking finally stopped. Pike pressed his fingers against McCoy’s cock, and nodded as if he’d just passed some kind of department inspection.

McCoy gritted his teeth and watched as Pike stood back so he could see his entire body, and slowly started to undress. He stood staring at Leonard, completely naked for a few seconds, and McCoy swallowed. A month ago, he would have admired the man’s physique. He was well-built, and “beautiful” would not have been an exaggeration. At the moment, however, the sight of Pike’s lean, cut, strong body only served to terrify him further.

Pike stalked slowly to the bed. Leonard managed to keep his mouth shut, but he couldn’t keep from shaking his head again. Pike climbed slowly onto the bed and straddled his body. McCoy managed to choke back another whimper. He wanted to cry, but he squeezed his eyes shut and forced himself to swallow down the urge. Rule four: Do not show fear. You are sentient beings, and you may not be able to hide your emotions completely, but the attempt should be made, for similar reasons as the ones we discussed with Rule three.

“Are you ready for me, Leonard?”

He shook his head again, eyes still closed. “I don’t… believe… you want to do this. This isn’t you.”

“You don’t know who I am,” he said. “But look at me. LOOK!!” McCoy looked at Pike’s sultry expression. “I am what you would have been able to share if you weren’t a dirty snake!

With that, he pressed himself down with a groan, until McCoy was deep inside him. Leonard looked away, trying to rid himself of the image of Pike glaring down at him. The admiral was still for a few seconds, then slowly began to pump.

McCoy let out a sound that was something between a moan and a sob. It felt so much like Chris. Some part of him had assumed that, because the circumstances were so different, he wouldn’t feel like the same man. He was wrong. The way he paused to get settled, before actually getting started, the little groans of pleasure, the way he breathed almost in time with his thrusts – it was all the same. The familiarity of his body and his rhythms, combined with the fact that Chris had obviously gone completely insane, suddenly became too much. Tears sprang to his eyes, and he struggled to keep them in. He thanked all the powers he’d ever learned about that Chris no longer seemed to be paying him any attention. He was wrapped in himself, head thrown back, chest heaving in his own ecstasy, as he pressed himself up and down against the doctor.

Tactic six: visualization. I know, it sounds ridiculous, but take yourself to your happy place, and try to stay there. McCoy tried to fool his mind – tried to make himself think this was really just another power game like in the old days. Pike was topping this time, and Jim holding his arms down, alternately whispering dirty things in McCoy’s ear, and egging Pike on. It might have worked, except that he knew without doubt calling out “prime directive” would get him laughed at, and that was best case scenario. Worst case… he didn’t want to think about what a man like this could come up with in this kind of mental state.

Pike was moving faster now – roughly jamming himself up and down. Leonard felt his own erection throbbing inside of the admiral. He ached for release from the awful tension, but it never came. Pike cried out suddenly, and at the same second, McCoy felt a familiar warmth on his torso. He couldn’t hold the tears back then. Pike was shuddering on top of him, he was still hard, and his own body trembled from the physical tension, and the fear. Pike would recover in a moment, and then the danger would increase again. What would Pike do to him once he started paying attention to him again?

After a moment, Pike pulled himself off of McCoy’s body, and stood at the foot of the bed. “You want me to stop, don’t you, baby?” Another sob escaped. Remember, when they start being nice to you – it’s a trap. Don’t believe them. McCoy nodded slowly, knowing from the tone of voice that Pike wasn’t going to stop until he was good and ready to. “That’s too fucking bad, you lying, man-stealing motherfucker. I’m going to fuck you absolutely senseless, and when I’m done with you, I’m going to let you lay there in your own sweat and my cum until Jim comes looking for you. Then he’s going to see what you really are. You are NOTHING, you hear me?! NOTHING!!”

McCoy clenched his fists again, bracing for some kind of attack. Instead, Pike crouched by the foot of the bed. “I swear to you, Leonard, if you attack me, I will hurt you very badly,” he said darkly. With that, he placed his hands on Leonard’s ankle, and undid the strap.

Despite the warning, McCoy tensed, and prepared for the strongest kick he could muster. As soon as Pike undid the second strap, he slammed his foot as hard as he could into Pike’s face. He was pleased to hear a sharp yell, and Pike reared back from the bed. McCoy planted his feet on the bed and pushed himself higher, trying to maneuver himself so he could get his teeth on one of the wrist straps. He had almost reached one of them when he heard a nearly inhuman growl from the foot of the bed. He struggled frantically to reach his own wrist, but before he could get to it, his ankles were grasped in an iron grip. He was dragged down forcefully, and Pike punched him squarely in the face. He struck him twice more, in the same place, and McCoy thought his jaw would break.

“Did you think I was playing with you???” he screamed. “You want me to fucking hurt you, don’t you??” He stormed away from the bed, leaving McCoy dazed, and still struggling to get back up to his former position. Seconds later, McCoy felt something cold and sharp pressed against his neck. “Hold. Still.”

McCoy stiffened. “Ch- s-sir, don’t-"

Shut up!” He flinched. “Look at my face.” Leonard forced himself to look into those hard, dangerous eyes. “I warned you. I gave you fair warning, didn’t I?”

He seemed to actually expect an answer, so McCoy cleared his throat. “Yes, sir,” he said weakly. “But-"

“Shhhh.” He raised the blade, so McCoy could see all six ceremonial inches of it. He recognized it from Jim’s quarters – a gift from Prennia VI. It meant he’d been in Jim’s quarters. Had he done something to Jim, too? He said Jim was everything to him, but he was totally unhinged! What was to stop him from… No. No, please. He felt fresh tears fill his eyes, and he was too distraught to even try keeping them at bay. Pike shook his head. “I haven’t even started yet.” He touched the knife to McCoy’s chest, tracing a lazy line down his middle. Leonard struggled to keep still, almost afraid to breathe lest he accidently cut himself on the blade. Even so, the knife left a hairline trail of blood in its wake.

Pike stopped mere centimeters from McCoy’s still throbbing erection. He traced a lazy circle around his cock, lingering dangerously over each sac as he passed them. Leonard could feel a scream coming on. He fought to swallow it, but when Pike finally pressed the knife down into the sensitive skin just under his navel, the scream burst forth. He left a deep cut, barely short of life threatening, in his middle. Ignoring his scream, Pike held down McCoy’s leg with one hand, and made another deep cut in the slant between his thigh and his groin. Leonard screamed again, then again when Pike made a matching cut on the other side. There were no further cuts, but Leonard still screamed again. He felt another one coming, but suddenly, there was a hand tight around his throat, cutting off his air supply. “Shut up, McCoy. Now. No more noise, understood!”

He nodded as best he could, and Pike slowly released him. McCoy clenched his fists so tightly he could feel his short fingernails digging into his skin in his effort to remain still and quiet. Pike set the knife down out of sight and returned to the bed, slowly stroking himself. When he was hard again, he grasped McCoy’s ankles and pushed. Leonard couldn’t hold back a cry of pain as his knees were forced up, aggravating the cuts in his groin. He let out another short cry when Pike pushed roughly into him, aided only by the copious amounts of blood flowing from his legs. Pike looked down at him, and McCoy averted his eyes. He bit his lip until he tasted blood, while Pike pounded into him, grunting and panting with his exertion.

Eventually, Chris started moving deeper, and slightly slower. Leonard was shocked, if not exactly relieved, when Pike reached between them and pulled off the cock ring. He pressed himself in, deeper and stronger, leaning in, pressing against McCoy’s dick until the friction finally sent him over the edge. Leonard screamed as his orgasm erupted, finally relieving the awful tension. Pike’s thrusts suddenly took on a more frenzied speed. He was close. McCoy’s already intense fear heightened again. He didn’t have time to wonder what was in store next, before Pike came with a shuddering groan.

He lay heavily against Leonard’s chest, shaking slightly, for several moments. He began to wonder if Pike had fallen asleep. After a few more moments, Pike lifted slowly off of McCoy and moved toward the head of the bed. Leonard started to lower his legs, and Pike glared. “No! Leave them where they are!”

He froze, forcing himself to hold the uncomfortable position. Pike stood beside the bed, facing McCoy, his cock, stained with blood and cum, directly in front of his face. “Clean me off.”

“WHAT?”

“Open your fucking mouth, and suck me until I’m clean!”

“No!”

Pike backhanded McCoy hard across the face, waking up the swollen area where he’d punched him earlier. “You want me to get the knife again, don’t you?” Leonard shook his head. “Then open your mouth.” The doctor clamped his teeth together, and shook his head again. He was scared shitless, but he couldn’t make himself obey, either. Instead of going for the knife, Pike smacked Leonard again, then clamped a hand down on his face, pinching his nose closed. Leonard held his breath as long as he could, but when Pike started to force his jaw open, could feel himself weakening. He couldn’t bring himself to fight anymore. At least, he told himself, this might be a chance to get away. If he clamped down hard enough, he might incapacitate him, and maybe he’d have time to get the wrist bands off. Even as he imagined it, his fears sprang up, and he thought of all the many places where Pike could slice him if he didn’t escape. And how would he get out of his quarters with the cuts he already had?

Finally, he couldn’t hold his breath anymore. He took a breath, and Pike wrenched his mouth open wide. McCoy let out another choking sob and shut his eyes, trying to brace himself for the moment Pike forced himself into his mouth, but not wanting to see it happen. When, after a few seconds, nothing happened, he slowly opened his eyes. Pike still held his mouth open, but his hands had started to shake. He was frowning, but he wasn’t looking at Leonard. Yes, his eyes were open, but instead of looking crazed, or furious, they looked distant – as if he were staring at something far away, or something in his mind. After a moment, he seemed to focus again. His eyes widened, and he released McCoy’s face and backed away as if he’d just been burned.

Leonard clenched his teeth together and watched the admiral stagger back a few more steps. Pike looked at the doctor, then down at himself. He touched the blood on his own abdomen, and his body trembled. McCoy saw his stomach lurch, and he bent over and vomited violently onto the floor. He stumbled to his knees, and Leonard could hear him taking deep, heaving breaths, and sounding as if he was trying to keep from vomiting again. After a few moments, he stood up again and slowly approached the bed. McCoy knew that something had happened – he knew it was over – but he still couldn’t help cringing when Pike drew near. The admiral looked absolutely horrified, and his hands shook violently. He edged nearer the bed almost as if he was afraid to touch anything. He gently lowered Leonard’s legs back down to the bed, and covered him with the side of the blanket.

He looked at McCoy’s face, and opened his mouth, but apparently couldn’t say anything. Shaking harder than ever, he backed away from the bed and hit the comm channel. “M-medical,” he said hoarsely.

“Aye, sir?”

“This is… Admiral Pike. Captain Kirk has been dosed with a strong sedative. Get to his quarters – use medical override – revive him, and tell him to come to Dr. McCoy’s quarters immediately.” He glanced at the bed again. “Alone.”

“Right away, sir!”

He closed the channel, and turned back to face the bed. Leonard could feel himself starting to panic. Why did he want Jim to come? And why alone? He felt his breathing starting to quicken. The fears that had started to abate were rising sharply again. He tried to make himself ask, but he was too afraid to open his mouth – too afraid to hear the answer.

Admiral Pike stood shakily and glanced around the room. He located his clothes, but seemed unable, or unwilling to put them on. He just stared at them, looking lost and confused. A few seconds later, Jim burst into the room, still wearing his pajamas, but phaser drawn, and eyes blazing. He stopped short when he saw Pike, and recoiled in horror. The admiral took one look at him and immediately puked again. Jim’s eyes widened, and he started to scan the room. His jaw dropped when he saw Leonard. “Bones?” He sounded like a frightened child, and the sound nearly brought tears to Leonard’s eyes.

“Jim!” He’d meant it to come out strong and reassuring, but his voice sounded pathetically weak and desperate to his own ears.

Jim made it to his side in an instant. His “captain” face was back on, and he put a hand on McCoy’s face. “Okay, Bones, it’s okay now,” he said, and he sounded as self-assured and definite as if he’d dealt with this kind of thing all the time, and there was absolutely no doubt in his mind. He took off the restraining bands, and, with a glance toward Pike, he moved down and looked beneath the blankets. His fist clutched the blanket tightly enough to turn white. McCoy closed his eyes, irrationally ashamed. A moment later, he felt the blankets laid back over him, and then a hand was gently laid on his head. “Bones.” Leonard opened his eyes, filled with warmth just from the love Jim managed to impart in that one word. Jim’s face was completely drained of color, but he gave Leonard a reassuring smile. “It’s okay now, baby,” he whispered. “I’m here.”

Leonard reached up and touched his face. “I’m so glad you’re all right,” he said in a hoarse whisper.

“Me? I’m fine. I’m s-“ His voice cracked. “I wish I’d been here sooner.” Leonard shook his head, still touching Jim’s face. He felt safe. Jim was so young, but his presence made everything all right, no matter how horrific it had been a moment before. This must have been what Pike had seen on the Nerada. Jim Kirk was beautiful. He was everything.

McCoy saw movement out of the corner of his eye, and tensed when he realized it was Pike. Jim stood up straight, and advanced on Pike like a fierce, but controlled panther. “Back away,” he said, in a dangerously low voice.

Pike stepped back, still shuddering uncontrollably. “I p-place… myself under your arrest, Captain,” he choked out.

Jim closed the distance between himself and Pike, grasped the man’s arm and dragged him away from the sleeping area, out toward the door. Leonard was too shaky to sit up and look, but he heard Jim’s commanding voice snap, “Get dressed.” Then, he ordered a security detail to the room. He saw Jim slowly walk backward until he passed the division between McCoy’s sleeping quarters, and the main work area. He glanced at Leonard, and gave him another quick, reassuring smile, before turning back to glare at Pike.

In a very few minutes, his door chimed. “Security, sir.”

“Come!” The door hissed open, and he said quickly, “Take Admiral Pike to the brig – maximum guard.”

“Aye, sir!”

Leonard heard what sounded like footsteps coming inside. “No,” Pike said fervently. “I’ll come to you, just… don’t come in here.” Jim looked extremely confused as the door hissed shut.

Jim came back to look into Leonard’s face. “You can rest soon, okay?” he said softly. “I just need to… Dr. M’Benga is on duty right now. Do… do you feel comfortable with him doing…” He swallowed hard, and Leonard could see his lip starting to tremble.

“I trust him completely,” he said, trying again to sound strong, and doing a better job of it this time. “Don’t worry, Jim,” he whispered. “I… see you… and… don’t…” He could feel his body start to shake, and he knew that he was starting to go into shock. He looked into Jim’s glistening blue eyes, and worked to get the words out before he became incoherent. “You can’t… don’t blame your… self.”

Jim let out a half-sob, half-laugh, and nodded. “I love you,” he said, voice thick with emotion. He kissed Leonard’s forehead and stepped away. McCoy strained to keep him in sight while he called Medical. He felt dizzy, and he couldn’t quite understand what Jim was saying. Soon, there was a strong hand in his, soothing words, and then – incredibly fast, it seemed – Dr. M’Benga was there with a triage kit. There was reassurance from the doctor to both of them, then a brief sting on his neck. Within seconds, he was fast asleep.


McCoy laid still, eyes closed, listening to his surroundings. He was in Medical bay – hew could hear the bio-monitor pulsing above him. The usual bustle was muted, which meant he was in one of the private rooms. He heard the hiss of the door, and M’Benga’s voice, softly. “Captain?”

“Yes, Doctor?”

McCoy was surprised, and incredibly touched when he realized that Jim’s voice had come from beside him. He hadn’t come in with M’Benga as he’d assumed. He’d been sitting beside him all along. “I’m sorry to bother you, sir, but I didn’t want you to be shocked if you come into the main area. Pike was just brought in for treatment.”

What?” Jim managed to make the question sound intense without yelling.

“Security caught him slamming his head against the edge of the bench. Came in with a concussion, heavy cranial bleeding, and-"

McCoy’s eyes snapped open as he processed the words. “You mean he tried to kill himself?”

“Leonard!”

“Bones!” Jim’s shock gave way to tenderness and concern. “How long have you been awake?”

“Just a few seconds. I think…”

“Shhh.” He looked up at M’Benga, who had come to check the monitor.

“Jim, listen to me,” he said, his voice strained and weak to his own ears.

“Bones, no, you need to-“

“Sir, I think maybe you should let him speak. He’s stable, and it’s important that we listen to what he has to say.

Jim pursed his lips, but nodded. McCoy knew that he understood everything Geoff had said. Victims of this kind of violence had every semblance of control and value stripped away. Medical professionals were trained to pay careful attention to patients in this stage, and to make sure they understood that their doctor wouldn’t run roughshod over them, or discount their input. Leonard passed over the disturbing fact that he was in a position to receive such treatment, and concentrated on what he wanted to tell them.

“When he…” He swallowed, finding it difficult to talk about it even when he knew he was safe. “When he stopped himself… right before he told medical to wake you up… he looked… sick. Like he remembered, but he… couldn’t…” He sighed, frustrated by how difficult it was to organize his thoughts.

“Take your time, Len,” Geoff said.

McCoy nodded and tried again. “Check him for neurological toxins.. Something that could lower inhibitions, or-"

“Good idea,” M’Benga said.

“Wait, you think a drug could have made him do this?”

“It would explain the way he acted after…” He frowned, and Geoff spoke again.

“It would also explain why a man like him might attempt suicide. Captain, it’ll be part of the criminal investigation if I make this kind of search. Do you authorize it?”

“Yes, do it.”

“I’ll keep you posted, sir. And Len?” He glanced at the monitor. “Try not to strain yourself, okay? Get some rest.”

“You’re the boss,” he replied. Geoff laughed and left the room. Jim sighed and sat next to him again. “You don’t like it, do you?”

Jim smiled, and touched his shoulder. “Am I that obvious?”

“To me, you are.”

“He… he shouldn’t get away with this.”

“If he was… out of his mind, or under some kind of foreign influence, he-"

“He… he hurt you, and I… want…”

Jim’s fist clenched tightly, drawing up McCoy’s shirt. He took hold of Jim’s shaking hand, and squeezed. Jim looked down at him, and McCoy gave him a smile. “Jim. I love you. It’s over. I’m alive, and I’ll be okay. That’s all that matters.”

Jim smiled. He leaned forward and gave Leonard a long, gentle kiss. Reassured, McCoy allowed himself to follow his doctor’s advice, and get some more rest.

Fin


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