Warning: Since this is all Laura JV's fault, I'm employing her "I don't use warnings" motto. The pairing should be warning enough, if you ask me ;-).
Special thanks go to T'Aaneli and Greywolf, my betas.
The challenge as issued by
"Anyone who can write a serious Kirk/Cyrano Jones will win...ummm...one silly, NC-17 rated K/S, S/Mc, *or* S/C from me. First come, first served, one time only offer. If you take me up on it, please cc me on the story post. :P"Laura wrote me a lovely K/S piece called An Infinitely Tender Hand and that can be found on her site which is here (you have to navigate through the site to get to the story). Yum. And it's a cave story!
Kirk gripped his glass tightly as he looked out into the semi-crowded room. There was nobody here he recognized, which was good. He wasn't looking to recognize anybody. Just the bartender.
He knocked back the rest of his drink and placed the empty glass on the counter, signaling for another one.
God, he hated diplomatic functions and today's was no exception. They never varied one from the other. And why did this one have to be on K-7 of all places? This had been Komack's brilliant idea, the bastard, sending Kirk out on a "diplomatic tour".
"Scotch, please." He sat at the bar over by the corner, where he could keep an eye on the door. He didn't want to be found.
It was the same bartender from three years ago. Kirk recognized his long face and barely contained expression of annoyance. Some things never change.He wasn't supposed to be here. He was supposed to be at the banquet being held at the other end of the station. A banquet held in honor of the Federation's success on Sherman's Planet. A big event. Dignitaries from all over Federation space where in attendance. Kirk was one of the guests of honor. And he had slipped away the first chance he got.
He should go back. That was why they had sent him here, to mingle, to shake hands and smile. He was Admiral James T. Kirk, a bona fide hero and champion of the Federation way. Hell, it was his job to mingle.
Kirk looked up from his glass and saw a dark haired woman standing next to him.
"Hello. Mister." She was calling the bartender who casually sauntered over to her. "I'd like one Orion iced tea and ah, one Saurian brandy, please."
Kirk stared at her. Pretty. Dark eyes. Nice lips. She tapped her fingers on the counter.
"Here you go, Ma'am."
"Thanks." She picked up her drinks and headed to where her friends were seated.
Kirk sighed. Well, he wanted invisibility. Apparently, that was what he was getting.
He took a sip of his scotch and closed his eyes, concentrating on the feel of the alcohol burning down his throat. It pooled together in the pit of his stomach, burrowing a hole.
Somewhere in the back of his mind, Kirk knew he should stop drinking. He was fast approaching drunk and he didn't really care for being drunk. But tonight, that fuzzy numb feeling was just what he was looking for. Kirk took another sip.
He never let himself think about his life, past present or future. He made sure he was too busy to think. Busy was good. The more work the better. It wasn't the type of work he was used to, not even a pale comparison, but he didn't think about that, either. It was enough. It had to be enough. But sometimes he couldn't swallow it. Like tonight.
"Captain Kirk?" A loud boisterous voice disturbed Kirk's quiet reverie.
Damn. Someone had spotted him.
"Captain Kirk? Is that really you?"
He opened his eyes and looked into the round face of...
"Well I'll be a Rigellian fire worm, it is Captain Kirk! My dear sir, I am overwhelmed with joy." Cyrano promptly sidled next to Kirk and hoisted himself onto a stool. He turned to the bartender. "Yoo-hoo! I'll have a flaming Delven rum punch. Thank you. And another..." He looked at what Kirk was drinking. "Scotch?" Kirk nodded slowly with a look of amusement. "Scotch for my friend here."
The bartender gave Cyrano a look that could have killed the deadliest Klingon without moving a muscle.
Cyrano lifted his eyebrows and jerked his head in Kirk's direction, a silent plea.
The bartender continued the look and didn't move a muscle.
Kirk chuckled. To the bartender, "It's alright, like the man said. A..."
He looked at Cyrano, "flaming Delven rum punch...for my friend here. And another scotch."
Kirk looked at Cyrano for a moment. He hadn't changed much in three years, still as buoyant as ever. But there were differences, the biggest being Cyrano wasn't trying to sell him anything.
"Well, well, well. You're about the last person I expected to see tonight, but I can't say I'm displeased about it." Kirk flashed the bigger man a quick smile. "How are things for you? I haven't seen one tribble and quite frankly, I thought this place would still be crawling with them."
"Captain, I'm shocked, shocked I say. You have no faith in me at all." Cyrano managed to look hurt.
"It's Admiral now." Kirk's voice was quiet.
"Oh, indeed." Cyrano eyed Kirk's uniform for a minute, a bit hesitantly. "My, you are young to make Admiral, aren't you?"
Kirk shrugged and downed the rest of the scotch he had been nursing in one swallow. Cyrano's eyebrows went up.
"So, where are they? The tribbles?" Kirk looked pointedly at Cyrano and noticed the man's odd expression. "Is there something wrong?"
"Nooo! Not at all! I just hadn't realized you were a connoisseur of the fine art of imbibing, Admiral."
The bartender served them their drinks, looking suspiciously at Cyrano as he placed the elaborate rum punch in front of him.
Kirk looked down at his refilled glass. "There's a lot you don't know about me."
"Ah yes, well...You were asking about the tribbles? Oh they're still here, which is why I'm still here, in case you were wondering. Seventeen point nine years remember. I've managed to clear most of them out of the more heavily trafficked areas. You've only been here for--?"
"Since this morning."
"Why, you've haven't even been here for one entire day, my dear sir. I'm sure you'll see a few before you leave. You drove a hard bargain, Admiral, a hard bargain! But I'm a man of honor and haven't backed away from my duty." Cyrano raised his drink, lifting it in Kirk's direction for a small toast and took a sip.
"Glad to hear it." Kirk lifted his scotch and lightly clapped him on the back, promptly causing Cyrano to spill his punch.
"Admiral!" Cyrano shrieked.
"Sorry." Kirk quickly handed him a cocktail napkin.
"Quite all right. Quite all right. Do not fret. I don't suppose you know if rum stains do you? Well, no matter, I need a new jacket anyway. This one's seen better days, wouldn't you say, Admiral? Admiral?"
Kirk had stopped listening and was looking over his shoulder. Cyrano followed Kirk's gaze to the door of the bar where two gentlemen had just entered.
Mr. Barris, the Undersecretary of Agricultural Affairs, stood by the door with his assistant, Mr. Macy standing rigidly beside him. It seemed Barris had a knack for picking out just the right assistant. The only nice thing Kirk could say about Macy was that he looked good with a brown nose.
Kirk groaned. "Shit." Hunkering down, he looked around desperately for anything to shield himself from Barris' view.
"Quick, stand in front of me." Kirk practically pushed Cyrano off his stool.
"Admiral!" Cyrano protested.
"Shhh! Quiet, I don't want him to see me."
Barris stood for a moment just inside the bar. With the same superior air he always maintained he surveyed the room suspiciously.
"I'm certain he's in here. I know I saw him leave the banquet."
"I don't doubt you, sir." The assistant stood just behind Barris, practically mimicking Barris' very stare as he too, scrutinized the room.
"That man is out to ruin me. I just know it. The smartest thing Starfleet ever did was taking the Enterprise away from him. I've never met a more incompetent officer. Why they gave him a promotion I'll never know..."
With a pinched and sour expression, he walked up to a young lieutenant who was sitting with a few of his friends.
"You. Have you seen Admiral Kirk in here tonight?
"Did you say Admiral Kirk?" The lieutenant's voice cracked a bit as he spoke.
"Yes, Admiral Kirk. Have you seen him?"
"No sir. I haven't...Wow. James T. Kirk, here. Really?"
Barris audibly sighed. "Must all you Starfleet types react so when one mentions Kirk? Yes really! I gather you haven't seen him?"
Barris huffed and turned away, crossing the room to another group of people.
Kirk looked over Cyrano's shoulder, his hands holding tightly onto Cyrano's arms, making sure that the bigger man always stood in between him and Barris. Cyrano made a very adequate shield.
This night just kept getting better and better. Must all of his past rise up to haunt him? Kirk could already feel the headache coming on.
"Admiral?" Cyrano whispered.
Kirk quickly looked at him. "Yes?" Cyrano had a concentrated look on his face from trying to see through the back of his head. Bless him.
"What is it?"
"Could you loosen your grip, just ever so slightly...please?"
"Oh sorry. You don't mind do you, Cyrano?"
Their eyes locked and understanding passed. "No, Admiral." Cyrano's pale blue eyes smiled at him. "I don't like him either."
Kirk smiled. This close to Cyrano, he could smell the sweetness of the rum from his breath.
He went back to watching Barris who had started circling the room at the other end of the room. However, Macy still stood by the door, effectively cutting off his only exit.Trapped. "Damn."
"What is it?" A flash of concern, almost fearful enjoyment, crossed Cyrano's face.
"What's-his-face is blocking the only way out of here."
Kirk looked at Cyrano again. "You're enjoying this aren't you?"
"Well, to be entirely honest Admiral...yes." Cyrano's expression turned sheepish. " I don't get to see much excitement anymore. Since they took my ship away."
"They took your ship away? Who took your ship away? I thought it was returned?"
"Oh, it was. And thank you, Admiral. I know technically I should have been stripped of my trader's license. That was very good of you."
"Don't mention it. I know you didn't mean any harm. So where is it now?" Kirk could now differentiate between the sweet rum smell and Cyrano's own distinct odor, a mixture of after-shave and...Altarian glow water?
"Well, since I couldn't really leave this station, not till all the tribbles were gone, I couldn't afford to keep it. It was repossessed." Cyrano continued to whisper, "You see, I had some outstanding debts and...well, no income really...so they took it." He looked slightly embarrassed at his confession.
Kirk eyes darkened. "I'm sorry. I had no idea. I know how you must have felt."
A surprised look came into Cyrano's eyes. They stared at each other for a heartbeat. Then Cyrano smiled and his eyes sparkled. "Pish. It's all in the past now, isn't it? Besides, with excitement like this, who needs a ship? I haven't been this close to a beautiful young man in years."Kirk colored. Suddenly, he gripped Cyrano's arms tightly, causing the other man to yelp.
"Shhh! Barris is coming this way. Quick. Take off your jacket."
"He's going to recognize my uniform." Kirk's reply was a hurried whisper.
"Oh. Right." Cyrano managed to take his rather large jacket off without moving too much and handed it to Kirk. Kirk put it on quickly and peeked over Cyrano's shoulder.
Barris was only three people away.
Without a second thought, Kirk jerked Cyrano into a haphazard embrace, eliciting another yelp, which he quickly silenced as he claimed Cyrano's mouth in a deep kiss.
Barris saw the kissing couple. A look of utter distaste passed over his face. He did not approve of public displays of affection. Quickly, he looked away. No sign of Kirk, anywhere. Damn that man. Where could he be?
He signaled for Macy. "Kirk isn't in here. Let's try his quarters. I will find that man if it's the last thing I do. He can't hide from me forever."
The two men turned and left.
Kirk was the first to break off the kiss. Avoiding Cyrano's eyes, he leaned his head against the broad shoulders still held in his hands.
"I'm sorry. I shouldn't have done that."
Cyrano didn't answer, standing in shock.
"I don't know what came over me. I know how to handle that man. I don't need to hide from him. I shouldn't be hiding from anybody. I don't hide. I face my problems. But...I don't know...tonight's not a good night for me, I guess. Being back on this station...I'm reminded of what I once was. Look at me, now. A drunk Admiral who hides out in bars and accosts men he hardly knows. What have I become? Cyrano?" Kirk looked up into a pair of glazed blue eyes. "Cyrano? Are you listening?"
Cyrano came back to reality and looked at Kirk. "That was incredible!"
Kirk sighed and dropped his head back onto the broad chest in front of him.
Cyrano stared straight ahead for a moment. The glazed look left his eyes. Gone was his usually flippant facade as he looked down at the beautiful man in his arms with sad eyes. Raising his hand, he hesitantly laid it on Kirk's head. "Admiral. Don't apologize, please. I've had so much fun tonight. The most fun I've had since that fight with the Klingons, do you remember that? How much excitement do you think this fat ugly old man sees on a daily basis? Why, I can survive on the last five minutes for decades, really. So please, don't despair. You owe me no obligations."
Kirk didn't move. Concern clouded Cyrano's eyes.
"Why don't you have another scotch? You say you're drunk already; one more isn't going to make any difference. That's one of my mottos--'A drink today makes all problems go away. A drink tomorrow shall chase all sorrow.' My personal creed."
Still no movement. Cyrano thought for a moment.
"You miss your ship don't you? I'm sorry Admiral; there is nothing I can offer you that could possibly make it better. It must be hard, for you. I must admit, I never figured you for the Admiralty."
"That first officer of yours, Commander Spock was it? He was special, wasn't he? You miss him."
That got Kirk's attention. His head snapped up. His eyes narrowed as he looked at Cyrano.
"I meant no offence, Admiral."
Cyrano looked into Kirk's eyes with open honesty, watching the emotions play across the younger man's face. He felt suddenly bare, knowing he was allowing Kirk to see past his usual armor.
Kirk turned away and Cyrano let the younger man disentangle himself from his embrace. He watched as Kirk stood for a moment facing the wall, his chest expanding in and out as he took a few deep breaths.
Turning to look at Cyrano, Kirk took off the jacket and handed it back to him.
"You're not ugly. You have very beautiful eyes, and I have never cared about weight."
It was Cyrano's turn to look away. He stared at his hands.
"There is something you can offer me." Kirk said quietly. "I would love to have another drink with you, my friend, but, as you've seen, it really shouldn't be here. I'd offer my quarters, but they, apparently, are also dangerous. Do you know of another place where we can go? A private place?"
"I don't want to be alone tonight." Kirk's voice was shades above a whisper.
Cyrano looked up at Kirk. The hazel eyes clear, if a bit too bright, his handsome face serious, but openly so, with none of the emotions from before.
"Why Admiral, I know just the place." Cyrano's own special flair came back. "A wonderful establishment. One I like to call home. I would be beside myself with happiness if you would accompany me."
Kirk gave him a big smile. "Please. Lead the way."
They left the bar together.