Title: Winner Takes All (5/?)
Fandom: Star Trek TOS
Pairing: Kirk/Spock/McCoy; also S/Mc, K/S, K/Mc.
Warnings: slavery, dub-con
Summary: Mirror!verse, post first five-year mission. Two bitter rivals are at war over a prize possession.
Previous Part: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
Or read at AO3
At the end of his shift, Leonard is casually leaning back in his office chair and chatting with a colleague. When his Vulcan arrives, per usual, to be escorted home with McCoy, he gives Spock permission to enter, sees the neurologist out the door with all the gentlemanly charm of a psychopath and orders the locks engaged.
Spock stands so compliantly still with his hands clasped behind his back, that the sight pisses Leonard off. He hates charades. “Tell me again why the Admiral and I shouldn’t kill you or turn you in?” he spits.
The Vulcan raises his eyebrow slowly. “You may attempt to do so, if it pleases you, Doctor.”
Of course Spock is as blunt as ever and the doctor understands that, by the choice of words, the Vulcan already has several counterattacks running through his super brain—and probably calculated the success rate of each with an ease that would make a war general envious.
“I wouldn’t dare sleep if I were you, hobgoblin,” Leonard warns him.
“You would incite the Admiral’s displeasure by harming me?” Spock sounds amused, if such a thing is possible. “Leonard, as I understand the situation, your lover made it quite clear how… abundantly he desires what I can provide.”
On the surface, Spock refers to the device that he is rebuilding in a special laboratory—mysteriously made available to McCoy’s Vulcan slave (no one with smarts and a desire to live asks details); Jim wants his weapon back very much indeed, enough that he broke Leonard’s fingers on his left hand when the doctor sincerely offered to kill Spock. However, the innuendo hidden beneath bothers McCoy to no end: Spock is also asserting the fact that Jim—somehow, some way—still wants to bed the Vulcan.
Normally, Leonard is tolerant for Kirk’s libido. Hell, he even appreciated the extra “attention” Jim found for some of their evenings together. But this isn’t the Enterprise in the middle of deep space. Three years of being on solid good earth (mostly) and of struggling with a hatred and bitterness for a lover he still wanted… it changes a man and his desires. Leonard still enjoys variety, but he no longer wants to share.
Call it settling down; call it severe obsession.
McCoy doesn’t give a damn what it is the Vulcan is after or has planned for Kirk and McCoy in the end. If Spock decides to play Kirk against McCoy, he’ll meet an unfortunate accident. Spock may be handy to have around for a lot of reasons, including sexual satisfaction, but that it isn’t enough for Leonard to turn a blind eye to a potential opponent. Especially not one as slyly deceptive as this half-Human, half-Vulcan.
He hates being duped; he hates being controlled and at the mercy of someone lesser. It’s a natural reaction for a Human with a proper ego and a good deal of respect in his profession. Unfortunately, somewhere deep down, Leonard admits to a margin of acknowledgment on the Vulcan’s behalf. Spock is good at carefully crafted ruses, most likely a cultivated skill for survival in a cruel world.
But that’s just it. The world is cruel, at least this part of the galaxy (Empire) is, and Leonard makes no bones about what he is or how he has to get through each day. Intelligence gets you only so far and cruelty much farther. There is no room for gentleness or compassion, no need to fight for another when chances are the return favor will be a knife in your back.
So with great suspicion and distrust, with bitter acceptance and a heightened sense for danger, Leonard waits like a snake in the grass. Lie low, observe, and prepare to strike.
Unfortunately, Spock is the second snake in the grass and a Hell of a lot more slippery than McCoy. No matter. The doctor has a sack of venom, like acid, for the perfect moment of attack.
He slips off his lab-coat, collects his Vulcan and heads for home.
The Admiral packs a box and instructs an assistant to wrap it nicely. “For McCoy,” he tells her. That’s all he needs to say.
The battle between Doctor McCoy and Admiral Kirk has grown legendary among the halls of Starfleet. Per Spock’s instructions (this amuses Kirk), Jim and Leonard must continue to present the impression of two rivals warring for a Vulcan slave. Well, that’s not entirely difficult to accomplish because Kirk still wants to claim Spock—he dreams about it often—and McCoy won’t give him the opportunity.
Jim is unsure whether Bones is obstinate from pride or refuses Kirk’s hints (and demands) just to make him angry. And it does make Kirk angry—entirely too hungry for bloodshed. Jim cannot decide whether he wants to carve up the doctor, the Vulcan, or both. He hopes that at their next rendezvous, he can accomplish at least a pittance of violence against one of them. Bones is the easier target, because he opens himself right up to Kirk like a flower—and enjoys the kind of rough handling that Jim gives in return. The doctor is not vulnerable, not in the least, but he does present a decent illusion of vulnerability. The thought drives Kirk to distraction, sometimes, to touch himself.
Spock, on the other hand, used to bruise so nicely—a lovely shade of dark green. He misses that. Jim understood that Spock was purposefully allowing himself to be harmed by his Captain, as was his duty as a subject to superior authority. That the Vulcan never once uttered a cry, moan or any indication of feeling other than indifference to Kirk’s deliberate attempts to hurt him… it was glorious and set the Human on fire with need.
Those memories still press upon him in the dead of night, when he has a playmate held down by the neck and is enjoying himself. Now, however, he wonders how much of his addiction to Vulcan flesh was his own and not an implanted desire from Spock.
For that alone, Kirk is going to allow Spock to make him Emperor and then chain him to a rock and carve out his liver as a modern-day Prometheus. He may even let Bones grow it back just so Kirk can keep doing it, over and over again. How long, then, until Spock can withstand no more agony? How far can Kirk truly go with this Vulcan of his (of Bones’ too, he supposes) before that fortified mind shatters at his feet like glass? He’s always wanted to test Spock’s limits, thought that, as an Admiral with no need of a First Officer and only a plaything, he might able to. Then Leonard tore through those fantasies by carting Spock off to Georgia.
Luckily, his mind is starting to supplant his anger at McCoy’s inference (and audacity) with new fantasies of domination over Mr. Spock. And it’s possible that he might include Bones somewhere in there too—as another foolish man to be taught a lesson. He vacillates on the subject of handling the doctor. McCoy is good for sex, very good for it in fact, and maintains similar tastes in the bedroom that Jim does. Bones also makes the most delightfully sinful noises when he is coming or when Kirk is particularly enthusiastic with his technique.
Sex is great, yes, but something Kirk can have plenty of, even as an Admiral.
Is McCoy worth more than a romp? On the Enterprise, the answer was clearly yes. Kirk remains intact and functional today mainly due to the basic alliance between the Captain and the Doctor.
Now he is an Admiral, with a soon-to-be rise to a whole other (magnificent) level of power. Well, Kirk thinks idly as he signals for his newest conquest to remove her shirt, the Emperor will need a trustworthy physician. Perhaps that shall be sufficient to keep Leonard McCoy alive.
The meetings of the three are clandestine, which is a riot for McCoy (he says so) and a nuisance for Kirk (who prefers to announce his declarations of war). They never come together in the same place twice, and always have to eliminate one or two possible threats to the discovery of their joint collaboration. Were anyone to catch a rumor of the three reunited, it would surely rock the Fleet… and turn those cold vicious eyes of the Emperor’s Council upon them, swiftly followed by execution.
Spock allows Kirk to monitor his progress on the project—the crux of their civility with one another. The Vulcan builds each piece of the weapon separately, like a small gadget of no important purpose. Eventually all the parts shall fit together to a whole, and then the destruction can commence.
Leonard, however, is vital to the success of the outlined plan. When Spock explains this, rather flat-voiced and offhand, to McCoy, the man stares at the Vulcan for five seconds before breaking into rough laughter. Then he tells Spock to go to Hell and gets up to leave.
Spock is on McCoy in an instant, pressing that frail Human body onto the table by the throat until the doctor’s eyes leak tears of suffocation.
“Spock!” Kirk snaps. “You kill him and we’re all screwed.”
The Vulcan eases up on his bruising grip. “Doctor,” he addresses McCoy below him, “you will provide assistance as instructed.”
“Fuck you,” McCoy rattles.
Spock wastes no time in proving his point. He keeps the doctor pinned to the table and arranges his free fingertips across the side of McCoy’s face.
“You may make a choice now, Leonard. I have not enslaved your mind but I can; I will, if I must. Do you yield to me?”
The answer is low, full of spite. Sincere. “No.”
Kirk’s hand locks tightly onto the Vulcan’s wrist. “Spock,” he warns.
“Captain.” The Vulcan pauses to consider this second Human. “Why do you interfere?”
“As…attractive as I find the idea of Bones at our beck-and-call, can you assure me that the change won’t be noticeable to others?”
Leonard struggles, then, against the table, against the hand on his face. “Jim! You son of a bitch!”
Spock answers, “I can bind his will but the task requires elimination of any… prominent traits of resistance.”
“I’m not a fucking puppet!” McCoy screams. “Either you fucking crush the life out of me, Spock, or let me go!”
“Doctor, I must have your cooperation, freely given or not.”
“Let him go,” the Admiral decides.
Spock, surprisingly, releases the doctor who lays limp and shuddering. Those dark unfathomable Vulcan eyes fix on Kirk and a question is made from a statement. “You have no… emotional attachment to McCoy.”
Kirk smirks. “No, but I like fucking someone more lively than a doll.” He eyes his former First Officer. “Of course, you weren’t much better than that, were you, Spock? Vulcan control really ruins a good time.”
McCoy sits up, rubbing the bruises on his neck. “You’re an asshole, Kirk.”
“You owe me now, Bones.”
The doctor grimaces. “Sure, keep believing that. But who’s to say that Spock won’t put me down anyway and then fry your brains too?”
The expression on the Admiral’s face cannot qualify as anything other than blatant self-confidence. “Spock needs us as we are. Isn’t that right, Mr. Spock?”
The Vulcan tilts his head. “For maximal efficiency, you are correct.”
Kirk adds, “So in order to appease us mere pawns—” Kirk sneers as he says this word. “—in his master plan and prevent a less-than-satisfactory outcome, Spock will agree to a few conditions.”
That eyebrow goes up.
“Always compromise with your enemies, Mr. Spock, until you can destroy them,” the Admiral advises.
“State your terms,” the Vulcan replies smoothly.
McCoy breaks in with “Keep your Vulcan mind-control to yourself.”
“As you wish.”
That answer does not satisfy the doctor. He asks, suspiciously and from an aching throat, “How do we know that your word is good, Spock?”
“You do not.”
“That makes me feel a lot better,” McCoy tells the other man.
“We’re all two-faced, Bones. Let’s just pretend, for the moment, that we live by honor.”
“Honor’s overrated and damn detrimental to my health, but a’right.”
“Your terms, Captain?” A tentative alliance is forming.
“I want full control of the machine.”
McCoy snorts. Spock is as enthusiastic as the doctor. “Negative.”
“Then it shall require us of both to operate it. Consider it a guarantee, on your behalf, of my immunity to the fate our opposition faces.”
There is a short stretch of silence as each power-that-be tries to read the intentions of other. Finally, Spock—having arrived at some conclusion none but himself will be privy to—agrees.
McCoy stands up and looks from Kirk to Spock and back again. His hands drop to his sides and remain there, his entire body coiled and waiting. There is a heavy sense to the air, as it always feels right before a lightning strike; it is a terrifying combination of anticipation and apprehension.
Kirk breaks the heaviness with his electric grin (and an unnamed burning in his eyes). “There is one more condition, Mr. Spock.” Kirk half-turns to McCoy as well, probably savoring a victory he hasn’t yet won. “Doctor, for you also.”
McCoy watches him cautiously, with knowing eyes. “It won’t work, Jim.”
Spock inclines his head in invitation. Kirk does exactly that. “I want full participation,” he states.
There is no need for other words, another phrase. All three understand the statement exactly for what it is, exactly as Kirk intends them to, because of two truths: McCoy knows that Jim will never be satisfied until he has the Vulcan under his thumb in some fashion; and Spock knows that his initial manipulation of the Captain’s lust has consequences which cannot be reversed.
“You desire mutual copulation.”
“Yes,” Kirk says simply and McCoy hisses.
“I shall agree, Jim,” the Vulcan tells him. “However, I have an obligation to warn you. When a Vulcan male seeks sexual release, his control is not optimal.”
“I’m looking forward to it, Mr. Spock.”
McCoy remarks, “I doubt you should, Jim. I really do.”
Jim has that look in his eyes that always bodes ill for his enemies. “As a doctor, McCoy, I’m sure you’ll be prepared to—” His grin is sharp and challenging. “—handle the aftermath.”
“I hope he breaks your neck in bed.”
“I’m sure you do, but you might want to worry about your own neck. Spock seems to have an affinity for twisting it.”
The doctor steps up to Kirk. “Who says I’ll be joining you?”
“Because you want me, Bones,” Jim says softly as his fingers skim the fingerprints left in McCoy’s flesh. “You want me and I want him.”
McCoy says too gently, “I hate you, and one day I’ll kill you because of it, Jim.”
Kirk pulls him close. “I know you’ll try.”
They seal the promise with a kiss that tastes bitterly of the future.
Later, when Leonard is alone and Jim is satisfied for the evening, the doctor has no more stomach for idleness. He realizes that their triad can become the most unstoppable force in the galaxy, if they each own up to a margin of trust. Spock can savor the fruition of years of scheming; Kirk can rule with an iron fist and his name fawned from every mouth in the Empire. McCoy… But this is where the dream breaks apart.
McCoy almost wants the plan to blossom, just out of curiosity. What is it that a hard-eyed Vulcan such as Mr. Spock wants badly enough that he uses whatever means he has—including his body—to achieve completion? However, that night, watching both Kirk and Spock fight each other in a grotesque naked wrestle for dominance—the sharp smell of blood and sweat—tells Leonard all he needs to know. They—this threesome which slowly grows beyond the bed and into the harsh daylight of reality—are a failure in the making. Three separate individuals at war that, when chaos finally wins, will tear into his partners with the ferocity of a wild beast.
It won’t work.
It can’t work, because if it does go so far as to see Kirk into power and Spock at the culmination of some long-desired revenge—then what happens to McCoy? He doesn’t need the attention of the galaxy focused on his every whim; he doesn’t need a billion crushed souls to shake loose from his fist.
Whether Jim plans to kill Spock eventually, Leonard does not care; and James T. Kirk is not a man of intimacy or partnership—not in the least. So it’s a dead-end road for a doctor, perhaps a Vulcan too, and Leonard does not have the capacity for mental persuasion like Spock to survive. What he does know, with certainty, is that neither Jim nor Spock will ensure Leonard’s safety after his part of the deal is done.
The dwindling hours of the night are hushed. McCoy rubs the scar on his face no less than a dozen times as he contemplates Fate over a half-empty bottle of bourbon. The drink warms him when all other options leave him cold. In the end, as the sun rises, it’s easy—much too easy—in the early dawn to make that brief call. He says to his ‘recruiter,’ voice strained from Spock’s attack, “I’ve got a charge of high treason for you. …. Yeah, the Admiral… and my slave, Spock.”
It ends with a promise and a beginning.
McCoy stands up, turns around to the shadowed doorway. “Satisfied?”
The Vulcan makes no reply. His response is, silently, for now.