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Spock awoke to the quiet murmurs of the life support machine next to him and a gentle snoring sound.

He was in Sickbay again and a quick inventory of his body told him why. He had several bruised ribs, a punctured spleen and his left eye was bandaged extensively.

He ached everywhere else, but it wasn't unbearable.

He looked to his side and saw Jim through his one good eye. His Captain was unnaturally pale and his face was bruised up pretty bad.

Knowing he was the cause of Jim's injuries hurt worse than all of his wounds combined.

Jim seemed to feel his gaze on him and he woke up slowly. A smiled lit his face before he was even fully conscious.

"You're alive." He breathed out in relief.

Spock tried to rise, to answer Jim properly, but his Captain's hand pushed him back down.

"Don't you even think about getting up Mister. You're not going anywhere till Bones says you're up to 100% again."

Spock smiled internally and glanced up at his Captain with a subtle teasing look.

"I believe I said something similar to you only an hour before you led the counter attack against the Klingon ship Rithlin." He countered.

Jim smirked and sat back down onto his seat with a plop.

"That was completely different. You really had me scared there for a minute. Thank the Creator they didn't know enough about Vulcan biology to aim to where your heart really was."

Jim placed his hand over Spock's side, directly over his beating heart.

"I almost lost you." He mumbled quietly, not looking at his first officer anymore.

Spock's heart twitched at having caused Jim pain and he fought the urge to place his hand over Jim's.

When the blonde's eyes rose up again to meet his own he saw only more pain.

"I almost cost you your eye because I left you alone. Because I wasn't there to protect you."

"It was not your fault Captain. I should-"

Jim cut him off before he could finish.

"No Spock, I won't let you blame yourself! I shouldn't have left you alone! I should have watched over you like you always watch over me. I should have-"

Spock silenced Jim the only way he knew how.

He kissed him.

In a flash of movement that didn't hurt nearly as much as it should have, Spock had his arms around Jim's neck and his lips against Jim's.

Although he would never admit it he smiled into the kiss the instant Jim started kissing back.

Jim was half on top of him before Spock had to push him off of his battered ribs.

Jim only pulled back enough to lean on his elbows on either side of Spock's head and stare down at him.

Their faces were still so close they were breathing each others air and both were smiling in their own way.

"Has anyone ever told you that you have beautiful eyes Mister Spock?"

Spock didn't smile, but Jim knew he was on the inside.

"You would be the first Jim."

"Well I hope I'm the last." Jim whispered back.

"So do I Jim. So do I."

One last review?

Yours truly,


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