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I couldn't breathe, I couldn't swallow, I couldn't do anything but stare at the limp body in my arms. His face was so pale, like a sheet of paper, and dark eyelashes rested against high cheekbones, not even fluttering.

We had stumbled across one of the holes in the ground. Taking the phaserblast that was meant for me, he had stumbled and we had both fallen. Our enemies ran past us, screaming in triumph. We were alone, both of us hurt, and maybe Spock was dying. I had no way of telling in the darkness that surrounded us.

All I knew was that he wasn't breathing. I wanted to breathe for him so badly that my heart was breaking.

I had never told him. Not even after T'Pring's rejection had I told him how much he meant to me and regret flooded my body now, heavy as concrete, suffocating as a wet blanket. The pain eating through my chest felt like corrosive eating through steel.

"Spock," I whispered. "Don't you die on me. Don't you dare die on me!" and then I could finally draw air into my lungs again. I felt dizzy from lack of oxygen.

I leaned forward and put my lips to his, breathing life into the man I cared for more than my own life. Putting my own pain in the back of my mind, ignoring it as best I could, I drew in air and forced it into his lungs, feeling his cold lips against my own.


And again.

Far off in the distance I could hear the phaserfire, and the screams from people dying. I knew I should have been there, helping my crew get back to safety, but without Spock at my side it wouldn't matter. If I couldn't get him back among the living, I knew that nothing else would mean anything to me anymore. I wouldn't even bother trying to get out of here.

He coughed then, and sucked a deep breath into his lungs. I don't know how badly hurt he was, but when his dark eyes met mine, I knew that he would live, and breathing came easier to me as well.

I helped Spock to his feet, and when he groaned in pain, I put my arm around his thin waist, vowing that as soon as we were back on the Enterprise, I would tell him the truth.

"Spock, I treasure you more than my own life. I love you."

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