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Original prompt: Star Trek (TOS), Kirk/Spock, I didn't say 'harder,' I said 'more efficiently.' (originally posted here)


Bones glared at Jim over his coffee.

"Half the crew is out with this stomach bug, the rest are exhausted from working overtime, and you instruct them to work harder!"

"I didn't say 'harder,' I said 'more efficiently,'" Jim clarified. He rubbed his head.

"That pointy eared first officer of yours is rubbing off on you," Bones remarked. "When's the last time you slept?"

"Last night," Jim said, draining the last drop of coffee from his own mug and motioning to the yeoman for refill.

"I don't mean a cat nap," Bones said. "How many hours did you get?"

"I can't remember," Jim said, yawning. "We went to bed around midnight."

Bones's eyebrows raised slightly. "We?"

The yeoman presented a full mug of coffee, and Jim accepted it with a weak smile. "Thank you, yeoman," he said. "That'll be all for now. Get some rest while you can."

"Yes, captain," she said and left them.

Across the table, Bones folded his arms over his chest and sat back on his chair. "Are you going to make me guess?" he asked.

"I misspoke," Jim said. "What I meant to say was..."

"You're suffering from sleep deprivation," Bones interrupted. "I don't think you misspoke at all. Lack of concentration is a common side effect."

"Bones," Jim said, frowning, "I don't want to discuss this right now."

"As is irritation."

"My personal life is my business," Jim snapped. "I don't care to discuss it with my CMO."

Bones held up both hands, but he maintained a neutral expression.

"Perhaps I should ask your first officer," he said, and Jim's eyes snapped up to meet his.

"How did you..." he began, pressing his lips into a firm line. "I trust you'll keep this to yourself."

"Keep what to my--" Bones's eyes widened, and he found himself nodding as Jim's meaning became clear. He hadn't guessed. Hell, he hadn't even suspected. Spock was so stoic, and Jim was always chasing after a skirt, though Bones had to admit all Jim did was actually chase them. He couldn't remember the last time Jim Kirk had been in a serious relationship with anyone but his lady, though he and Spock did play chess several times a week. They were always together. Bones had never seen anyone rush to sickbay as quickly as Jim did when Spock was injured. I'll be damned, he thought to himself. It had been right in front of him all along.

Jim stared at him intently, a slight crease between his eyebrows, hand wrapped tightly around his coffee mug.

"Of course, Jim," Bones said, and the captain visibly relaxed. "I won't breathe a word."

When Spock arrived with his own breakfast tray, he sat beside Jim, and Jim slid his hand just that much closer to Spock's on the table. It was no different than any other morning. But this morning, as Bones watched them through his own sleep-bleary eyes, watched Spock urge Jim to eat one more bite of toast, a slice of apple, to go and rest before alpha shift, he found himself smiling.

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