Rubbing his hands together in anticipation, Captain Benjamin Sisko carefully made certain that the door was locked, and his communicator off. If there was any real emergency, he knew, the computer could turn it back on by override, but he certainly hoped there would be no such disturbances tonight! Having made doubly sure that everything was in order, he finally made his way to the kitchen-area. Reaching ever so gently into the shoulder bag that he was carrying, he brought forth a small parcel wrapped in unassuming grayish paper. Predictably, that was the precise moment the door-chime rang. He froze and waited. It chimed again. He waited. Two more chimes came in rapid succession. Ah, she was here.
Horrible Vile Green Things (From Outer Space)
K/S and DS9 crossover by Kat
♥♂♂♥This material contains slash (gay luv), but is all rated PG.♥♂♂♥
"So what's with all the secrecy?" Jadzia Dax asked as Benjamin showed her to the table, and held out a chair for her.
"You'll see," he replied with a grin so infectious that Jadzia couldn't help but laugh a little. She hadn't seen her friend so excited for a long time.
Jadzia had been seated so that she had a clear view of the kitchen area, where Benjamin was currently engaged in what seemed like an almost religious ceremony. He was opening a parcel of some sort.
"You are not," he enthused "going to believe your eyes when you see what I managed to get a hold of for our monthly dinner!" The parcel was almost open now, and Jadzia caught the faintest glimpse of something deep green. "Ta da!"
Excited despite herself, Jadzia got up from her seat and came over for a closer look. Beneath a maniacally grinning Ben, arms outstretched in triumph, lay several mossy green bulb-like vegetables. Well, she wasn't quite sure how she was expected to react in this situation. Was this some unknown Earth custom?
"Well?" he asked finally.
Jadzia arched an eyebrow.
"Very... nice. What... Erm... What are they?"
Ben's expression went from a frozen smile, through confusion, to astonishment.
"You mean you don't know?"
"Well, when I think about it, they do look sort of familiar. It's been a long time since I've seen them though. Several lifetimes. Avo... cado isn't it?" Her face scrunched up with the effort of remembering so far back. "Are they a fruit or a vegetable?"
Ben shook his head in amazement. "I can't believe you don't know! I could have sworn I'd told Curzon..."
"Hey, eight lifetimes worth of memories, remember? Just because I don't have instant total recall of something doesn't mean it didn't happen to me - to Dax, I mean."
Ben produced a small fruit knife, and proceeded to cut the bulbs in half.
"Believe me," he said, "if I'd have told you this, you would have remembered."
"Oh yeah?" She did not sound entirely convinced.
Delightful things were happening to stuff in bowls in the kitchen area, and the two friends remained silent for a while. Jadzia knew cooking was both a science and religion to Ben, and as such required a certain solemnity.
"There now," he finally exclaimed, emerging from his makeshift altar with a huge serving dish. "All done. And while we eat, what do you say I tell you a little story?"
Jadzia, though still skeptical, had been softened by curiosity and the irresistible smell that was wafting from the dish in front of her.
"This isn't going to be like that grapefruit story you told me last week is it?"
Ben shook his head laughingly, and began.
"Now, this was a long time ago, back in Captain Kirk's prime..."
Captain James T. Kirk stumbled into his cabin in a drunken haze. It had been, he felt, a really, REALLY good party. He could always tell by the state of his clothing. If his uniform top had remained intact the entire evening, he had probably just not tried hard enough. Did he need a shower before bed? Yes, he decided, he probably did. Humming a Klingon war-song someone had taught him the wrong words to, he sauntered into the bathroom, and nearly tripped over a sleeping Spock.
"Spock!" he exclaimed, struggling to remain upright.
The Vulcan was completely out of it. His eyes were half open, and there seemed to be some attempt at a reply from him, but nothing came of it. Kirk smiled.
"What's the matter, married life getting you down?" Kirk's tone was light, but there was a hint of worry in his expression. He could still not entirely allow himself to believe that Spock loved him, loved him enough in fact to have married him not more than two weeks ago.
When there was no reply, Kirk picked his husband up off the floor, and gently half carried, half supported him, to their bed.
"Sleep it off, my love," he smiled, landing a goodnight kiss on Spock's forehead. He couldn't wait to make fun of his husband in the morning. 'Vulcans never get drunk' indeed. And so thinking, he happily drifted off to sleep.
"I didn't know what else to do!" Kirk exclaimed, his face a mask of worry and confusion. "He's been like this since last night." McCoy put down his tricorder and fixed his blue eyes on the captain.
"And how are YOU feeling today Jim? A little dazed maybe?"
"I'm still feeling the effects of last night, I'll admit," Kirk said. His face hardened as a thought occurred. "Now, if you're implying that I'm unfit for duty..."
"Not at all Jim, not at all. Your blood alcohol levels is perfectly normal. That's my point. You shouldn't be feeling any ill effects at all." Seeing the frown on Kirk's face he added:, "And before you ask what on earth any of that has to do with your pointy-eared spouse over there, I have no idea. This shouldn't be happening."
"What?" Kirk exclaimed in exasperation,. "What shouldn't be happening?"
"Why, the emotional-physiological transfusion of course! Through your spousal bond. I thought you'd realized that."
Ah yes, the marriage bond. Kirk was still getting used to the unfamiliar though pleasant presence of Spock's thoughts and -- indeed -- feelings inside his mind. Sometimes the strength of his husband's love was overwhelming, but the Vulcan seemed able to control the bond somehow. Only during intimate moments did Spock allow for the completely unrestricted flow of emotion between them. So why this? Why now?
"This hasn't happened before," Kirk exclaimed.
"Well, you've only been married two weeks. Was there anything unusual about last night?"
"Not that I can think of...." Although he had been extraordinarily drunk. "It was the first party I'd been to since the wedding," he admitted.
"Yes. I was there." McCoy indulged in a half-smile. Then he paused. "We may be on to something there. No alcohol was served at the wedding party -- remind me never to attend a Vulcan wedding again -- and neither of you have had a drink since, until last night." He pointed to the readout above Spock's head. "Spock's blood alcohol level is nil. Your alcohol levels are normal. But his brain is acting as though his blood was 80 proof. It's as though the effects of your drinking was transferred to him."
"So why I am sober again, and he's not?"
McCoy scratched his head. "I can't know for sure, but my guess is that since you got your buzz on the normal way, you sobered up when your body did. There's nothing normal about how he got drunk though, and there's no telling what'll cure it. Like I said, this shouldn't be happening, but you and Spock aren't exactly your average Vulcan couple."
"You mean we're both men," Kirk replied grimly.
"Well yes, but more importantly you are human and Spock is half human. There's no telling how your particular bond will work. Maybe this will sort itself out. Maybe it never will. Either way, I'm not going to be able to help you out. I'm a doctor, not a Vulcan priestess."
Both men grew quiet, Kirk shaking his head as though dazed. Finally, he slumped down in a chair near his husband, staring into space. "This is... bad." Suddenly desperation showed in his face, and his hands became fists, clutching the chair. He looked up at McCoy, pleading. "Bones! Bones, you have to help us!"
"Now don't worry Jim, we'll get you two to Vulcan. They'll sort you both out."
"No. We can't go to Vulcan. Not now."
And he was right. They couldn't.
"Whoa, whoa, whoa!" Jadzia threw her hands up, nearly dislodging her napkin from its resting place on the table. "How come you know all this? Considering only a handful of people knew about Kirk's marriage to Spock back then, how would anyone know such intimate details? Doctor's visits, getting drunk, personal information?"
"Ah!" Ben replied, "That wasn't the last party the captain ever went to. Legend has it Kirk got pretty talkative when in a... good mood." He shrugged. "Word gets around, especially within the ranks of Starfleet officers."
Jadzia smiled indulgently.
"Alright. I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt." She took another sip of wine, an excellent green Aldebaran vintage she'd procured from Quark. "So what was the problem with getting to Vulcan? I knew ships were slower back then, but..."
Ben poured himself another glass.
"Ever heard of Butterman's Bargain?"
"Nice alliteration, but no. Wait... Wasn't there a Butterman's Rock? Some sort civilian-run way station used by the Federation?"
"That's right. It was run by Angus Butterman, a rather... eccentric and xenophobic human trader. Retired trader. His station was the only place to re-fuel and get repairs done in that particular sector of space. Now, Butterman had a curious case of xenophobia. He only tolerated a handful of species beyond his own, and he had a particular hatred for Vulcans. For some reason he allowed Starfleet and most human-crewed ships to dock - he'd open fire on pretty much everyone else."
"Doesn't sound like a very nice guy."
"He wasn't. But he saved a small fleet of Federation ships at one point, and managed to negotiate one wish as an award."
Jadzia stopped in mid-chew.
"A wish? What is this, a bedtime story? Is Kirk going to sober up Spock with three roots and five berries?"
"Three roots and five... It's a Trill children's story. There's this old fisherman who has two children, and one of them is joined and the other isn't. So he..." The bewildered look on Ben's face made her stop and giggle slightly. "Never mind."
"Butterman was a great negotiator, it's how he made his fortune. One way or another, he managed to convince a four star Admiral to grant him one request. Everyone was convinced that he would ask for Vulcans to be excluded from Starfleet."
"But..." Jadzia spluttered, "That's preposterous! Starfleet would never agree to that, let alone the Federation!"
"Of course not! But they couldn't go back on their promise without risking conflict and being banned from Butterman's station, so they asked the Enterprise to host a dinner, as a sort of diplomatic outreach, to try and soften Butterman up. Kirk was eager to find some way -- any way -- to prevent the whole catastrophe. And this dinner was only two days away, see, whereas Vulcan was a week's trip." He paused for a bite of chicken. "So you can see why they couldn't afford a detour."
Jadzia rested her head on one hand and speared another piece of the delightful green stuff Ben was apparently telling her a story about. So far there had been precious little mention of fruits or vegetables.
"You know, I'm not sure this story IS better than the grapefruit one." She sighed.
"Just wait and see," Ben promised. "Dessert is up soon!"
Kirk was in a nearly deserted mess hall, drinking coffee. No, scratch that, inhaling coffee. The aromas of other beverages seemed a distant memory. It must have started affecting him already, because he jumped every other minute, thinking he heard the intercom. "No word yet," he mumbled.
Kirk grunted, pouring himself another cup. So far nothing they had done had helped Spock's condition. As word leaked out -- it always did -- the entire senior staff and bridge crew had joined in with suggestions for cures. Each person was convinced that their cures were the only possible rememdy, and they all insisted that the other's suggestions were - if not outright dangerous, then at least totally useless. Chekov had insisted that the "hair of the dog" approach was the only way to go, explaining that "in Russia, people have to keep drinking to stay sober". Scotty had forced first Spock, then Kirk, to drink a vile-smelling concoction of dubious though supposedly Scottish origins, to no avail. The coffee had been Uhura's idea, and thus far it wasn't proving to be any more useful than the others. Right now she was sitting by the coffee machine, officially to make sure the captain stuck with the program. However, her eyes would wander to the exits, making sure no one came in to disturb them. Not long ago Sulu had come by "accidentally", and had just happened to have some herbs on him that if combined with the right sort of incense could - well, Kirk would never know what they could do, because at that point Uhura's chilling gaze had sent the lieutenant scrambling back to his post.
"Sir?" she said imploringly.
Kirk's head hurt in a way he would have never thought possible. It was as though he were drunk, hung over and sober at the same time. What must Spock be feeling, he thought. Drunk out of his mind without knowing why. It must be confusing, perhaps even frightening. He knew Vulcans felt fear, even though they suppressed the emotion. Who knew what was going on within his husband's mind right now?
"What?" he replied, a little more harshly than he'd planned. This needed to end--as soon as possible.
"I'm sure it's none of my business, but... why can't someone else host this dinner?"
"They certainly... could." Kirk straightened up and managed a weak smile.
"Well then what's the problem, Sir?"
Kirk sat his cup down, suddenly worried that he wouldn't have the willpower to pick it up again afterwards, but trying not to think about it. Swirls of colors he didn't know existed twirled painfully behind his eyelids.
"It's not the dinner itself that's important. It was an excuse, a chance for us to come up with some sort of solution to this mess. And... shortly before the party last night Spock informed me that he had...found such a solution."
Uhura leaned forward, all ears.
"He said he would explain it all...later. But he never got a chance to do....that."
An embarrassed silence fell over the room, until the whistle of the intercom finally sounded.
"Captain? McCoy here."
Kirk jumped to his feet, perhaps a little too quickly, trying not to wince at the accelerated throbbing in his head this resulted in.
"It's no use. I've pumped him full of... Well, you don't want to know what Vulcans use as stimulants, but it's having no effect. I'm going to have to cut him off now, before I start poisoning him. I'd wager you've had enough too."
"To last a lifetime," Kirk grumbled, his stomach churning in complaint.
"What you need now is rest. There's really nothing we can do now but wait it out."
'Rest' McCoy had said. Kirk shook his head. With the amount of caffeine he had in him, he'd be lucky if he managed to stand still for two seconds without shaking. He was in Spock's old quarters, which officially still were his quarters. The two of them had agreed that it would be better for all those concerned if their marriage remained a secret for the remainder of the five-year mission at least. While marriage and relationships among the crew were not uncommon, spouses were usually posted on separate ships. Apparently there was some concern that it would be harmful to morale or something - Kirk had never really understood why. Many officials were against it though, and things might change in the future. Until it did, Kirk wanted to make sure his next posting would be with his husband before anyone knew he WAS his husband. He touched a small statuette on a shelf, sighing. There was so much of Spock in this room still.
The walls had been painted since he'd been there last. Kirk frowned. Who on earth would want such a hideous shade of green? The color was a pale, almost sickly greenish-yellow, creamy color. In his current state, it almost made him physically ill. He sat down, instinctively clutching his stomach. On the table in front of him were laid out the various remedies from the crew, minus Uhura’s coffee. He'd had quite enough of that. He grabbed one of Spock's ornate teacups, and filled it halfway up with Chekov's vodka. Trying not to think about the smell, he poured in the remainder of Scotty's remedy, watching the greeny-black substance slowly mix with the booze. As an afterthought, he tossed in some of Sulu's herbs, using an insence stick as a mixer. He was about to down the whole thing in one gulp when his eyes came to glance upon the computer screen which Spock had apparently been working with before the party. It contained a memo from Starfleet, informing them that Admiral Halvorsen would be attending the dinner. There was a note about his dietary requirements. Kirk blinked. His brain was working overtime. Vulcans were vegetarians. Green. Sickly colors. One request. Halvorsen's dietary details. It was all so obvious when you thought about it! He stumbled through the door, yelling out to the nearest ensign:
"Get a message to Starfleet command! I need twenty pounds of avocados, the worst cooks in this sector and as many Vulcans as they can muster!"
The dinner was a lavish affair. As planned, the Starfleet officials, among them Admiral Halvorsen and half a dozen rather confused looking Vulcans, arrived some time before Butterman, who had insisted on being picked up at his station. One of the briefing-rooms had been hastily though very successfully converted to a dining room for the time being. As late as five minutes before the officials' arrivals, crewmen were scuttering to and fro, setting tables and lighting candles, folding napkins and painting the walls a subtle, creamy green color. The imported chefs had been set up in an adjoining room, and had been at work for hours when the ship finally arrived at Butterman's Rock. In Sickbay an almost cheerful Kirk sat by his husband's side, half reading some discarded medical journals.
Eventually McCoy felt he had to say something. "Shouldn't you be up there trying to help those Starfleet bigwigs suck up to Butterman? He should be arriving just about now."
Kirk smiled. "Oh, I'll get up there... eventually. I should think Sodek, T'Rill and T'Vaun will be able to handle things just fine for the time being."
There was a slight, ominous pause. Still smiling, Kirk smoothed out some creases in his husband's uniform, and plucked some imaginary lint from his own.
"But... those are Vulcan names," McCoy eventually spluttered. "You're having Vulcans greet Angus Butterman?"
Kirk nodded nonchalantly. "Maybe I need to check your blood alcohol levels again. Nurse, would you get me my kit?"Kirk waved the approaching young brunette off. "Don't worry, doctor; everything is under control." When McCoy's brow did not un-furrow, Kirk added, "If it'll make you stop trying to poke me with needles, I'll explain everything."
So he did. And McCoy laughed.
Jadzia was on the edge of her seat, her portion of exquisite mango pudding with caramelized avocado sauce completely forgotten.
"So what happened? Did Butterman relent? Why did Kirk paint the dining- room green? Why all the Vulcans?"
Ben laughed, and finished off the last of his pudding before replying. "Everyone was furious! Butterman was ready to explode by the time he even got to the table. He was greeted by Vulcans, escorted to the dining room by Vulcans, seated next to Vulcans, and there was even a small quartet playing Vulcan music. Meanwhile, Admiral Halvorsen, seated opposite Butterman, was getting more and more upset by the fact that he could not eat a single item on the menu."
"Why, what was on the menu?"
Ben grinned, pointing to the remains of the night's dinner. "Avocados with sour cream and caviar, followed by avocado soup, avocado and green bean salad, and avocado pudding for dessert." He shook his head. "The admiral was allergic to avocados."
Jadzia whistled. "Nice one... I still don't see how any of this would help the situation though."
"Well," Ben continued," after the dinner both the Admiral and Butterman were ready to burst, albeit for different reasons. Kirk made sure they were left alone in the dining room after everyone had left. They were not happy..."
"I have NEVER been so INSULTED in my LIFE!" Butterman raged.
"Mr Butterman, I truly sympathize. If there is anything we can do... Anything at all..." The Admiral halted, trying to fight down his nausea. He had been unable to avoid eating nothing at all, and now the meager sustenance he had in his system was attempting to abandon ship.
"I'll tell you what you can do," Butterman screamed, "you can have those disgusting horrible vile green... things! Banned from Starfleet!"
The Admiral did not reply. He was looking at the walls. The disgustingly green walls. His stomach was making disturbing noises.
"They are vile, aren't they?" he mumbled.
Butterman started. "You agree with me?" he asked, stunned.
"Why wouldn't I?" The Admiral managed to choke out. "They are revolting, and I don't know who allowed them in here in the first place!"
"Exactly!" Butterman exclaimed "My point precisely! So we're agreed then?"
"Oh certainly," The Admiral nodded, before clutching his abdomen in pain. "If you'll excuse me," he added hastily, before bounding out of the room in desperate search of a bathroom. There didn't seem to be many of them around.
"...And ever since then," Ben went on, "avocados have been banned from Starfleet!"
"What? You didn't like the story?"
"Oh sure I did. But come on. It's a little hard to believe, isn't it? Sounds like something drunken Admirals would tell one another at parties."
"Exactly!" Ben retorted. "That's how the story got around. Believe it or don't, but it makes for an interesting evening, does it not?"
Jadzia nodded. "That it does." She took a sip of wine. "So what happened to Spock? Did he ever get sobered up? Or are you claiming that the Ambassador has been going about his duties in a drunken haze ever since?" She poked her tongue out at her friend.
"Oh, he was fine. They eventually got him to Vulcan..."
Captain James T. Kirk held his husband's hand, and looked out over the crimson skies of Vulcan. Spock was still resting, his treatment not entirely over. The head priestess said it would probably take him a few weeks to get back to normal, and Kirk, seeing this as their only shot at something resembling a honey-moon, had taken some leave to join him. The temperature was nicely cool for the natives, meaning it was hot, but not sweltering to Kirk's tastes. Eventually, Spock opened his eyes.
"The dinner... Very important. Have answer..."
"No... I must tell you... We must hurry..."
"Alright." He moved closer to his husband, wrapping his arms around him protectively. "What is it I need to know?"
"Only way to stop Butterman..."
Clearly still weak, Spock struggled to stay focused. He looked intently into Kirk's eyes, and said, "We need exactly 21.45 pounds of ripe avocados."
The Kirk/Spock Avocado Fest!
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