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POV: Uhura
Year 3 of 1st 5yr mission

It was 2200 hours and Nyota was beginning to fume. Her shift ended thirty minutes ago; however, she couldn't officially sign out until obtaining the captain's or first officer's signature approving her department’s updated duty roster. It would then need to be entered into the ship's computer system to enable the automatic notification function to alert crew members of their schedules. She was looking at a good hour's worth of work still, and that was after tracking down her commanding officers.

In her mind, Nyota had already placed the blame for her late night solely on the captain's head. It was habitual now, after six years of having Jim Kirk forced into her life and the last three of serving under his captaincy. She found that she was almost looking forward to having another opportunity to lay into him for dereliction of duty and irresponsible behavior. It was what they did, how they operated, and she had no reason to change a routine that worked.

It wasn't as if she didn't like her captain. No, in fact Jim had somehow managed to worm his way into her affections and she wouldn't hesitate to call him a friend. It was only…when she and Spock had terminated their relationship she hadn't expected Jim to swoop in and snatch up the suddenly available Vulcan.

It stung to know that she had given up too easily. To know that Jim Kirk, of all people, was now bonded eternally to her ex-boyfriend, well, it irritated her to no end. Spock was content, that was plain as day. She just couldn't wrap her mind around the situation. Jim was, to put it mildly, exuberant while Spock was not. Sure, Spock had changed in the last few years. He was no longer as stand-offish as he once had been. He joined in with social activities at Jim's insistence and had made a place for himself among the crew of the Enterprise. Together they were an unstoppable team, professionally the best duo in Fleet, and personally the best of friends. Some would even say they were as close as brothers. But bondmates? She could not, would not ever understand.

Shaking her head to clear her thoughts, Nyota paused in the middle of the hall. She was on the science deck and hoped against all hope that she would find Spock in one of the labs working diligently into the night as he was prone to do. She was tired, her feet were sore and she wanted nothing more than to crawl into her bed for at least 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep. At this point in the evening she would happily forgo the opportunity to chew Kirk out if she could just get some rest and soon. She resolved herself to tracking down one of the signature's she required, turned the corner of the quiet corridor and stopped dead in her tracks.

Her quarry stood at the end of the hall illuminated by the ship’s evening light setting and looked about ready to have it out. She had been witness to a few of their disagreements before and didn't particularly care to witness another. For all of his Vulcan calm, Spock couldn't seem to contain his anger when Jim was involved, and he tended to lose himself in the heat of their arguments. In all the years she had known Spock, it was only since meeting Jim that she had ever heard the Vulcan yell.

Dithering on whether to intrude or slip away Nyota watched Spock begin to glow with unnatural paleness. His gaze swept to the floor then back to meet Jim's. At the same moment, she and Jim both took a step in retreat. She hadn't seen Spock look that blank since before Nero, since before Vulcan. She almost called out then, to draw their attention. She ached to comfort Spock, to hold him against whatever it was that Jim had done to make him retreat back within himself. Before she could do anything she watched in shock as Spock closed the distance between Jim and himself and proceeded to kiss the shit out of him.

Spock pushed Jim against the nearest bulkhead and just devoured his mouth. That was the only word for it, Nyota thought in amazement. Spock was devouring Jim right in front of her and she could not look away. The sight was unbelievable. If she went to any random crew member and spoke of this, this thing that was currently happening, they would never believe her. Did Spock have a temper? Yes. Did Spock lose himself to passion and participate in public displays of affection? Hell to the no! Okay, Nyota amended to herself, there was that time in the transporter room while they were together. But, no, that was mostly a 'don't get killed or do anything illogical' kiss and it was not passionate. This display that she was now currently witnessing, this was passion.

She could hear a few grunts from the other end of the hall and that startled her out of her stupor. They wouldn't. Were they really going to do that right in the open? Surely not. But as she watched Spock sank to his knees in front of Jim. Ready to flee at what she thought was going to happen, Nyota was not prepared for Spock to place his hands on Jim's waist and lower his head until his forehead rested just below Jim's ribcage.

“Jim.” Awe suffused Spock's voice and Nyota had never heard that soft, reverent tone from him before.

She continued to watch while Jim carded his hands through Spock's hair, tension that she hadn't noticed before draining out of him at the sound of his name.

“Thank God, Spock. You had me scared for a minute. Thought...thought maybe you didn't want it.”

Nyota had no idea what they were talking about, but the moment suddenly seemed too intimate to bear. When Spock wound his arms around Jim and pulled Kirk against him, when Jim reached toward the face still pressed against his abdomen and smoothed away a stray tear, Nyota finally fled. She reached her quarters in record time and tossed the unsigned roster atop her nightstand before collapsing fully dressed across her bed.

She couldn't understand what had just happened. All she knew was that she suddenly did understand Spock and Jim. Jim and Spock. They were, would always be, and the rightness of it settled deeply into her core. It was ridiculously clear to her that she had never stood a chance with Spock and that somehow made everything easier. It wasn't something she had done or failed to do, it was just how it was always going to be. With that thought echoing through her mind she turned on her side and began to drift into sleep.

She'd get the damn signature in the morning.

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