Title: 1-2-3, Old Like You and Me
Fandom: Star Trek AOS
Disclaimer: Not mine, in so many sad ways.
Summary: Drabble on an issue the trio is bound to face sooner or later.
Jim sucks in his middle, lets go of the contracted muscles with a whoosh of air. Suck it in, turn first left, then right—profile view—and whoosh. He frowns at the mirror image of himself. Repeat exercise.
“Hmm?” Jim sees only the backside of the doctor as Bones rummages through a drawer. (Kirk admires the view.)
“I think my youth is wasting away.”
Bones makes a noise of triumph, slams the dresser drawer shut and tosses a quick look at his lover. “Put on a shirt. We’ll be late to meet Spock.”
“We’re always late to meet, Spock,” Jim says absently as he runs a critical eye over his midriff. “He loves us anyway. Bones—” Jim pinches an inch (or more) of his stomach. “—I can’t see my abs.”
There’s a sigh. “Jesus, Jim.” McCoy pulls on the other sock and shoves his foot into his boot. He stomps a few times to get his foot in there just right and then forgoes lacing it in lieu of addressing Jim’s issue.
“Look,” Bones tells him. “Your youth is intact; it’s the cookies and pies, Jim. And as for your abs, I’m sure they are under there—” McCoy eyes the bare-chested man speculatively. “—somewhere.“
“That’s not nice. Didn’t your mama ever tell you—”
“Shut up, you infant.”
(If Jim could see the way his bottom lip pouts, he’d realize why McCoy likes the term infant so much.) Jim sighs and tugs on a shirt. “Okay, ready.”
McCoy does a slow turn around the room like he thinks he’s forgotten something but cannot figure out what it is. Jim rolls his eyes and halts Bones from taking another meandering step. He squats down and ties the laces of McCoy’s boots; gives each foot a pat when he’s done.
“Oh,” McCoy grins. “Thanks.”
“It’s not like you were going to remember,” Jim grins in return. “While my youth may be waning, I’d say yours is gone, old man. Memory is one of the first things to go, you know.” He winks, just for good measure.
Oh, how Jim loves that scowl. Until Bones opens his mouth, that is. “You can be rest assured, Jim-boy, if I were to start suffering the forgetfulness of old age, the first memory to go won’t be this conversation, smart-ass!”
It’s only natural that Jim takes a lovely opportunity of a frown like Bones’ by dragging him in for a long kiss. Eventually, McCoy pushes him away (half-heartedly) and says, “We’re late, Jim.”
“Then what do a few more minutes matter?”
All seems well and good at lunch—despite that Kirk and McCoy are very late and super-disheveled. Spock merely gives the pair his patented tolerant look and indicates an empty section of table. So everything goes along nicely… until Jim squints into the reflection of a fork and squeals in a very un-Captain-like manner.
McCoy pauses mid-chew and Spock puts down his soup spoon.
“Oh my God,” the Captain pants. His fingers pull down a clump of blond hair. “Is that—grey?”
Leonard slaps a hand over his mouth. His throat works with suppressed laughter and partially swallowed food.
“Jim, due to the pigmentation of your hair follicles…”
McCoy coughs quickly and interrupts with the warning, “Spock, not another word!”
Spock blinks at him. Kirk’s eyes are wide. “No, I order you to continue, Mr. Spock!”
“Spock, don’t you dare!”
“Leonard, I fail to see the harm in—”
“What? Spock, tell me!”
Spock does the worst thing imaginable (in Len’s opinion); he gives Jim what he wants. “The hair is not grey, Jim—”
“Oh. Really?” Such hopefulness.
“—it is silver.”
And WHAM. McCoy sighs into his coffee cup. If there were ever a picture of horrified, Jim would be it right now. He pulls the fork out of Kirk’s hand, tells him while brandishing it, “You eat with this, Captain, not admire your reflection. Now finish your lunch.” It’s plunked back down into a bowl of peas (which Jim has neglected thus far in the meal).
Jim is of a single mind. He says slowly, “I—have—silver—hair, Bones.”
“And I started to go grey the afternoon after I met you. What’s your point?” That McCoy actually began to notice the grey hairs during med-school, he doesn’t admit. No need to point out just how far along the path to Old Man he really is.
“Do you think I’m old?”
“I do not understand the question.”
“Old—aging into my twilight years—two turns from the Final Hurrah—”
“Stop waxing poetic, you dimwit. You’re confusing Spock.”
“I admit that I am intrigued, Doctor, by Jim’s choice of language but I am able to comprehend his reference as it was intended.”
McCoy says, “Well, answer him then, so I can finish my lunch in peace!”
“Jim,” Spock turns to his bondmate, “Your body ages at the proper rate; I am sure that Doctor McCoy can attest to this with medical evidence.”
Leonard wants to slap his forehead—or Spock’s. “Okay, Jimmy, here’s the deal. Spock is just being his practical self. Now, you want to know what my practical self has to say?” He ignores the quick head-shake of no. “I say that you’re making a mountain out of a mole hill. You think you’re getting old? Look at me! I’m turning into a sack of bones!”
“Yeah, but you’re still my hot sack of Bones,” Jim answers with a leer.
That the Captain said that a little too loudly in the mess hall causes the back of Len’s neck to go red.
“And you’re still good-lookin’, Jim; you always will be.”
The Captain seems mollified. In fact, his pitiful mopey expression is replaced with something much more typically James T. Kirk—that cocky little quirk to his mouth, as he announces, “‘Course you’re right, Bones. I’m gonna age like a fine wine. All the old ladies will be swooning—”
“—or having heart attacks,” McCoy clarifies.
Jim waves off the doctor’s sentiment and gets up to empty his tray—and possibly wink at a few female officers. Leonard watches Jim toodle-along with a renewed confidence. Then he sighs and turns to Spock. He says, quite solemnly, “We may have averted disaster this time, Spock, but I’ll expect you to be prepared in the future.”
Spock gives him a look that he always interprets as you-must-explain-further-as-I-am-curious-but-will-not-ask.
“If there’s one thing Jim has—it’s a lot of arrogant pride. Granted, loveable—mostly—arrogant pride, but I can promise you that this is just the first of many such inane conversations.”
The Vulcan catches on well enough. “I should inform Jim that I find him pleasing.”
He snorts, “Yeah, that’d be about right.”
“I find you most pleasing, Leonard.”
Len’s eyebrow shoots up and he laughs. “No need to practice on me, sweetheart.” He stands up and stretches before going to Spock’s side. Leaning down to that cute pointed ear, he whispers, “Just make sure you convince, Jim.”
The Vulcan turns his head to meet Len’s eyes. “Doctor,” Spock replies, “Vulcans do not lie; therefore I do not foresee an issue of… persuasion.”
Leonard rubs a thumb over the edge of Spock’s ear. “Too bad we can’t all be newly hatched like you,” he says wistfully.
Spock’s eyes are sharp and smiling. “Age is relative and… ‘in the eye of the beholder,’ correct?”
The doctor grins. “Sure is, darlin’. It sure is.” He looks forward to their golden years.
Just entertaining myself. :)