Let’s go bowling tonight.” The statement dropped out into long period of silence.
Jim watched as his husband lifted his head from his work.
“That is rather a non sequitur Jim.”
“Not really” He stretched and put down the stylus “We’ve both been up to our ears in Starfleet Brass and Academy work for the past fortnight. Let’s go out and enjoy ourselves for once. Bowling, a nice meal and a long walk along the Bay under the moon. You’ve nearly finished marking those papers”
Spock raised his eyebrow slightly “Very well, I will be finished in 7.3 minutes, and then we will go…Bowling.”
They stood just off the top of the lane, Spock looking around with his customary curiosity and cataloging habit.
“Have you ever done this before?.”
“Negative, however by observation of other participants, I assume the aim is to knock down as many of those ‘pins’ as possible.”
Jim nodded “The balls are all different weights, pick whatever is comfortable for you. I’ll go first.”
The ball flew down the alley, but as he’d suspected the moment he’d let go, it listed and only caught four of the pins. He stepped back, shaking his head more for effect than anything. “Your turn”
He watched as Spock hefted one of the heavier balls, fingers and thumb firmly in the required holes, took two strides, half crouched and sent the ball on. It crashed into the pins, the ricochet ripple taking down anything that wasn’t caught by the ball itself.
The board above their heads flashed up a multicoloured ‘STRIKE’,and the appropriate animation of pins falling left and right.
Spock looked back at him “That was the desired objective?”
Jim grinned at his bondmate, retrieving his ball from the feeder as the next set of pins were placed “Good start, let’s see if you can do it consistently.” Nine pins clattered down
The Vulcan matched his gaze “I believe the phrase is 'Challenge Accepted’ Captain.” The Orange-red ball rolled, and the board flashed brightly, STRIKE. Jim patted his hands dry and flexed the first three digits of his hand. This was going to be fun.
"Are you sure you’ve never been bowling before?”
“Quite certain Jim, I would remember such an environment”. There was a slightly pained expression on the Vulcan’s face.
Too Loud? He sent through the bond
The auditory levels are becoming increasingly uncomfortable as the venue is getting more crowded.
“Come on, let’s go.” He spoke reflexively for the benefit of anyone who might overhear them “I still can’t believe you scored every strike, when you’ve never played before.”
It was a simple matter of the required force and angle of impact against the weight of the ball to calculate the required amount of force I needed to provide to achieve it.”
“Simple my boots, only for a Vulcan.” He crouched to undo the laces of his bowling shoes, only then noticing the young woman and older man trotting towards them with great haste.
“Sirs, may we have a picture for the score wall? We put up everyone who scores a perfect game.”
Spock retried his lace and rose to his feet “As it appears this is a required ritual, I agree.”
Jim found himself watching from the sidelines with the manager as his husband was politely positioned and photographed. “Quite a coup to have a Vulcan to add to the line up?”
The man shook his head “Actually, your friend isn’t our first. There was another, oh 40 years ago. I was just running lanes here, but I remember it.”
Spock’s head turned like a magnet homing in “Another Vulcan? May I be permitted to see?”
“Of course” The manager led them back to the raised foyer podium, where the the walls were covered in the photographs. He stalked along them “Nearly 300 years this place has been going, it’s traditional, unlike some… Ahh, here we are.” He pointed at one particular photo.
Jim leaned in, looked then turned to his bondmate “I wouldn’t have brought you off I’d known.”
Spock came up beside him, eyebrows rising slightly “Fascinating”.
In the centre of the picture stood a male Vulcan with an imposing gaze, wearing plain embassy clothing, his arms formerly straight at his side. To his right in the picture, an empty seat between them, sat a young human woman, smiling and eyes laughing as she looked at the camera. The Vulcan was quite recognisable as S'ghan T'gai Sarek, Vulcan Ambassador to Earth.
The manager eventually broke their studious silence, his curiosity overcoming him “Do you know them?”
Spock straightened up "They are my parents. I assume that this was taken while they were in courtship here on Earth.”
Jim pulled all of his diplomatic skills to keep from laughing as the man opened his mouth, then shut it again and his eyes went wide. He’d clearly just realised who he was talking to.
“Would you like a copy to keep, we still have the picture in our records.”
Spock inclined his head "I would consider that favourable.”
The undercurrent of mental warmth that Jim picked up suggested that the Vulcan was far less equivocal over gaining the picture than his words suggested, and to anyone who knew Spock, they were already the equivalent of frantically nodding his head. He turned away and looked back at the one on the wall.
No wonder you’re the most handsome thing on two legs
Spock’s head shot round to look at him and an eyebrow rose.
He raised his hands in a gentle mea culpa “Lets put it this way, If I’d been adult thirty years earlier, your father would have had competition.”
His T’hy’la considered for a moment, then offered his fingers
But then Jim, you would not have me
There was no answer to that, except for him to complete the ozh'esta