Sometimes, I Need More K/U [NC-17]
Image a blend of Paramount and Monaco!
Disclaimer: Paramount owns Star Trek. I only own my fantasies.
Summary: When the world slows down and gives one a brief moment to claim some happiness. Another story in my "Realizations" series.
Uhura stood on the second floor balcony of her hotel in Monaco and looked out over the moon-lit dappled waves to the water below. It was late but she was not sleepy. Transporting did not solve the issue of jetlag; you were still somewhere that was in a different time zone than your circadian clock recognized. She had left San Francisco early in the morning her time, to attend an afternoon seminar here. Yet, even a romp through some of the clubs and casinos had not tired her out enough to sleep.
She sighed, dreading the crash and burn that would catch up with her later, probably just in time for her own presentation at the symposium. Yes, she laughed silently to herself, she would yawn right in the middle of the biggest academic moment of her life. The symposium was a three-month ongoing event put on by Starfleet Operations to highlight the latest in technology and science. To be a speaker at the event was a high honor and a recognition of your talents plucked from a sea of excellence.
Uhura had been surprised by Op's request for her to present on the current state of Communications within the fleet. Later, she had been irked to realize her presentation was scheduled during the personally busiest phase of Enterprise's refit--the part that totally reworked communications and the sensor array. Oh well, she had a good team back on the ship and Mister Scott watching everything like a hawk. They should be able to survive without her for a week.
She leaned over the rail and breathed in the salty air, watching the boats wink and bob in the choppy waves of the harbor. Too bad she could not tack on a few extra days after her session; Monaco was beautiful this time of year. Operations had used Man's hedonistic tendencies to lure greater attendance to the symposium; it was an age-old manipulation to schedule work in the middle of a playground.
Still leaning against the rail, Uhura heard someone walk out on the balcony just below and to the left of hers. The hotel was built into the side of a hill and each level stepped back a notch, giving the impression of a staircase winding itself up the steep incline. Uhura could see quite a lot of the balcony below, but the moonlight cast deep shadow on the lone figure that had walked over to the large potted ficus tree near the rail. He stood quietly, looking out to sea and sipping occasionally from a glass in his hand. Uhura felt a tingle of recognition as she stared at the man in a gray and white fleet uniform, his posture familiar, the squared shoulders and ram-rod straight spine a dead giveaway.
"Admiral Kirk?" she called, just loud enough to be heard by the man she thought to be her former commander.
The figure turned quickly, startled out of his reverie and looking for the face that went with the disembodied voice. "Uhura, is that you?" a familiar voice questioned back.
Uhura stepped to the side of her balcony and leaned out so he could better see her face. "Yes, Admiral, it's me. I thought I recognized you." She did not mention *how* she had known it was him, that she had memorized his broad shoulders from the many hours spent staring at them on the bridge of the Enterprise. "I had no idea you were here," she continued, smiling down at him.
"Yes, I got a whole twenty-four hours allotted to me to attend my own symposium," Kirk replied in a tone that implied he did not get to run his schedule as much as he wished.
"That much?" Uhura laughed. It was impossible not to at the pout she heard in his voice.
"Yes, I'm not sure what has gotten into Riley lately; he's being too generous," Kirk laughed back, realizing he had just sounded about four years old.
"Ah, you have to watch Kevin when he's in a giving mood," Uhura warned knowingly. The former Enterprise navigator, and current aide-de-camp to Admiral Kirk, was at his trickiest when being sweet.
"You don't have to tell me. I think *he* thinks he runs things instead of the other way around," Kirk sighed in rueful agreement, then tipped his glass back and drained his drink.
"It would appear you're empty. Care to come up and share a nightcap with me? It beats waking the neighbors." Uhura tilted her head and stage-whispered in feigned fear of being shushed from the room next door.
"Sure. You can't sleep either I take it?" Kirk asked as he sat his glass down and proceeded to step over the railing and climb up the ivy-covered wrought iron trellis anchored to the wall between balconies.
Uhura backed up to allow Kirk room to swing over the railing and onto her balcony, surprised at his cavalier entry. "Well, that's one way to make a discreet entrance," she laughed as he brushed off a few stray tendrils of ivy that clung to his uniform. A part of her melted at the little boy behavior, knowing he rarely shared that much of his true self with others.
"I've always wanted to do that," he grinned impishly.
"What, climb up to a woman's room?" Uhura teased, liking the smile on Kirk's face.
"Hmmm, I actually meant climbing a trellis, but your suggestion has merit too." His smile remained playful but Uhura felt a shiver move up her spine at the considering look that flashed in his eyes.
"How about I get us that nightcap?" Uhura grinned and winked as she stepped inside, using the minute it took to pour their drinks to contemplate the possible outcome of her spontaneous invitation. Jim's words had been laced with humor but Uhura had sensed a real interest couched in his banter.
They had not been 'together' since those first few weeks after the Enterprise's return to Earth. They had parted on good terms, he going to the Admiralty and her taking a temporary assignment in deep space for some major upgrading of the listening stations along the Romulan border. However, it had hurt like hell when he had commed on her return trip back to Earth to divulge that he was getting married to Lori Ciani--*Admiral* Lori Ciani. She had put on a brave face, telling him how happy she was for him, trying to ease the awkwardness between them as he told one lover he was committing to another. She did not know why his words had hurt so badly; they had agreed their relationship had grown out of mutual need and trust more so than a desire to be a real couple. Yet, it was evident he had felt torn too, he acted more as if he were telling her of a friend's death than his own betrothal.
Since then she had only seen him twice in person, once at a briefing with hundreds of others, and most recently at the mini-christening of the Enterprise, where the scuttlebutt was that Nogura had demanded Kirk and Ciani attend together. It had been obvious to her then that their relationship was strained, hardly standing near each other, working the event separately instead of as a couple. It was only a few weeks later that it became public that *they* had chosen not to renew their marriage contract. Ciani had moved out of their high-rise apartment and taken leave time. Jim had buried himself in his work. Now, he was here and looking at her in a way that warmed Uhura with excitement.
Kirk had stayed on the balcony, once again looking out toward the harbor until Uhura returned. Turning, he greeted her with a warm but more restrained smile as he accepted the proffered drink. "To old friends," he whispered, before touching his glass to hers and sipping the amber liquid.
Uhura repeated the phrase and took her own taste of brandy, the warmth working its way down her throat in its own slow seduction. "So, did you just get in?" she asked in curiosity, hoping that it was so. Noting how he had backed up a bit in his demeanor, Uhura still could not deny that it would be nice to share more than a drink with the handsome man standing before her.
"No. I wasn't kidding when I said I just got one day. It's only out of sheer stubbornness that I'm still here instead of beaming back after our debriefing at the finish of tonight's session,” Kirk answered, his tone suddenly flat and his eyes shuttered. It told Uhura volumes about his true state of happiness, and why he might have decided it was better to keep the night simple.
"If you beam back in the morning, it'll still be nighttime in San Francisco," Uhura challenged, trying to draw him out.
"Yes, but I have thirty-eight ships in various dry-docks now and two more coming in tomorrow. Work doesn't wait for the sun's call. I had wanted to be here for your presentation, but duty denies me," he offered with a tilt of his head and a sardonic smile.
"You knew I was presenting?" Uhura asked, surprised at the thought. She realized it was stupid of her to think that Kirk would not be intimately familiar with the schedule of events and choice of presenters.
"Of course I knew," Kirk answered in his own tone of surprise. "I recommended you for the communications update, but I was worried Captain Decker would ask you to decline because of the timing."
"No, he left it up to me, and frankly, I might have had I realized the date overlapped with this part of the Enterprise's refit. I accepted before reading the fine print." She laughed about it now, but it had not been so funny when the conflict in scheduling had made itself known. Uhura was just as much a perfectionist as Spock or Scotty ever thought about being; to be out of the thick of things now was killing her.
"I'm glad you did. You deserve the recognition." Jim captured Nyota's gaze, holding her captive for a long moment as he shared his quiet sincerity with her. They both knew being a key speaker at the highly respected symposium was a huge boost to one's career.
"Thank you for the recommendation. I'm honored you think so highly of me." Nyota looked away in real embarrassment. She knew he had always valued her and her skills, but to hear Jim say so tonight and to have had him declare it to Fleet Command by nominating her, made her flush.
"I've always counted on you and you've never let me down," he answered in a tender voice, making the comment feel much more intimate than the words themselves expressed.
Uhura could only smile in reply, her voice abandoning her at his unexpected praise. Trying to even the footing, she cleared her throat and moved the conversation to him. "So, how is your life going? With forty ships demanding attention, it sounds like you have a very full plate right now."
Jim paused for a moment before answering flippantly, "I do, but the Enterprise still gets most of my attention--don't tell anybody but she has priority over all the rest." He might be serious when talking about Uhura's life, but it was clear he did not want to be so when discussing his.
"They'll never hear it from me," Uhura giggled, as if Kirk's favoritism could ever be claimed to be a secret. Scotty played on it mercilessly to get the equipment and work crews he needed to put her back together again. However, it played both ways too, Kirk demanded they stay on schedule and get the job done right the first time. More than one team supervisor had been heard muttering in the hall after being reamed out by *Admiral Kirk* for what he considered less than perfect work.
"I feel safer already," he answered drolly as he made himself more comfortable by leaning against the balcony railing. "But how is the work going onboard? I just get status reports and diagrams; it's not the same thing as being in the thick of it."
"We're very busy, but I think she'll be fine," Uhura answered his real question. The workload was enormous, but she knew Kirk was more worried about how the Enterprise herself was faring under all their efforts. "It's amazing how much she's changed, but as Jelani once told me when his favorite sailboat was being upgraded, 'it's still her bones.' In spite of all the reconstruction, I can still feel her heart and spirit--thankfully that hasn't changed."
Kirk seemed to relax a bit more at hearing her sentiment. She was one of the few who understood what he felt for that ship and what really concerned him with the massive renovations she was undergoing. He would never forgive himself if he allowed her soul to be stripped away along with her obsolete systems.
"So, how is Jelani?" Jim asked with a smile, remembering the easy friendship that had developed between himself and Nyota's older brother when Nyota had taken him home for a visit after their mission had ended. He often thought about those few days he had spent on Jelani's fishing boat out in the Indian Ocean. It had been fun to help on the boat, with nothing more to worry about than trying not to get a blister from the manual labor of hauling in the catch. Uhura had known he needed to get away to lick his wounds after Spock and McCoy had left him. He had needed time to get over that betrayal and his anger at Nogura for coercing him into accepting his damned promotion. But most of all, he had needed her tenderness. He realized now, he still wanted it.
"He's fine; he and Shani are expecting another child in a few months. You know, Jelani left you an open invitation to come back any time you wanted. I think he liked having a first mate who would listen to him for a change,” she teased, remembering how old Popo had grumbled about having "excess baggage" onboard.
Putting down his glass, Jim moved to Nyota and placed his hands on her shoulders. "Penda, those weeks spent with you and your family are some of the best memories I have." Jim's face became wistful in the moonlight, his mind tripping over the reminiscences of those days and nights from over two years ago.
"They're special for me as well," Uhura admitted shyly. She looked back into his questing eyes, wondering how they had gone from talking about Jelani's boat to something deeper between them with only a look. Still caught by his gaze, she stretched up to meet his lips as he sought hers. It was a soft and tender kiss, a gentle foray seeking to reestablish their connection from the past; however, the body leaning against Uhura's was hard, silently urging her to yield to its strength. It was all she could do not to succumb to the desire she felt building in her own core, but she pushed her hand against his chest, demanding attention. "Jim, I think before we go any further, we need to talk about what happened between you and Lori--"
Kirk checked up and turned away--his temperament growing chill--it was obvious he did not want to discuss that part of his life.
"I'm sorry it didn't work out between you--" she began but he cut her off.
"Don't be. I'm beginning to believe I'm not meant for marriage--maybe I want too much from a relationship--maybe I give too little," he offered coldly, as if he'd had this conversation one time too often with himself.
"Oh, well, I've always thought perhaps you were already married," Uhura replied sagely, not allowing his distancing to push her away. Her words caught him by surprise and he turned his head, looking at her, waiting for her to continue. "--to the stars, to a ship," she finished, knowing she had his interest even if he wanted to deny it.
"Huh, even that relationship is estranged right now," he threw back in bitterness.
"Yes, but I think your love for them is strong enough to see this one through. They are who you live for." Uhura moved into him and touched his cheek, making him look at her. Lori had never served on a starship; she had made a name for herself in the bureaucracy. Ciani had no idea what it was like to depend on a ship for everything, and in return, to give back your everything to the ship.
"Maybe. I do feel alive, yet at peace when I'm out in space, but Command is a lonely life and I was tired of sleeping in a cold and empty bunk. Except now, the irony is, I lost my ship only to come home to an even emptier apartment." His honesty tore a hole in Uhura's heart and left it bleeding in sympathy, but she would not give up.
"True, but even as demanding as she is, a ship is far more understanding than most flesh and blood women. I seem to remember the ship looking the other way some nights when your bunk wasn't so lonely. She was always generous so long as no one sought to take you away from her or tried to take your place in her heart." Uhura lectured gently, remembering those same nights and how hard it had been for *her* to look the other way.
"Perhaps your relationship with Lori failed because you felt as if you were cheating on your real love--the Enterprise. I've come to believe she is more than a mistress to you, that she is your wife and everyone else comes second in your heart. I don't think Lori could accept that; she wouldn't share you and she could never settle for second place."
Kirk looked at her intensely as his mind did a déjà vu at hearing Lori's almost exact words repeated to him by this woman who had also been accused of being closer to his heart than his wife--by his wife. No, sharing and settling were not in the vows Lori remembered and she had decided enough was enough.
"But I made peace with that years ago." Uhura's eyes continued to bore into Kirk's, trapping him with her words. "Enterprise was my home and all I had to give up to live there was you. On-ship I accepted my place was on the Bridge, but here on Earth, sometimes I need more."
Jim cupped Ny's chin in his hand. "Sometimes I do too," he whispered tenderly against her lips, his voice full of need held too long in check.
Nyota broke the kiss first, taking Jim's hand and leading him into her room. Neither spoke as she brought him to her bed, turning to look at him in the dim glow of the bedside table lamp. The man standing before her was lean and hard, gone was the softness about the face that had once given him a boyish look. The light cast the planes of his cheeks in sharp relief, but what startled Uhura the most was the insatiable intensity of his eyes. They seared and scorched her with their very scrutiny. The man before her was just the raw essence of the one who had been her captain--as if everything extraneous had been burned away in the crucible that had been the past two years. The hungry look was chilling in its depth. Ny knew no matter what she gave him tonight, no matter what any woman gave him, it would never satisfy the craving that possessed him.
And then he smiled. How could such a simple act push all her fears aside? This man, who had always calmed her fears and slayed her dragons, how could she fear him now? No, she did not fear him, Jim the man, but she was wary of the admiral he had become: the admiral who had taken Operations by storm and reshaped it into his own image of drive and determination. Spacedock was a model of efficiencies as it managed forty ships with not so much as a 'by your leave'. Something unheard of under the previous command and certainly not the norm. Now it demanded more, driven to attain something that was never enough.
She lost herself in that smile, willing to banish all realities between them--ex-wives, former commands, past chains of command. None of those existed when he smiled at her--for her. How many times had she wished for him to do just this? How many times had his smile been for someone else? But tonight it was for her; tonight he had come for her and admitted he needed her, wanted her. Tonight he was hers.
The morning would burn it all way, the idea of them being together. He, recently divorced could not afford to be seen in the company of former crew. It was never the right time, never the right place for them ever to be anything but captain and commander. But tonight they could just be man and woman; in the darkness she could take him again and again and it would make the daylight bearable.
Uhura slipped her hands under the hem of Kirk's shirt and pushed it up over his shoulders. Momentarily startled by the coarse hair she felt as her hands brushed his chest, she glanced up into his eyes and caught the ready smirk.
"I no longer have to worry about McCoy constantly shaving me to patch up an injury. I thought I'd let Nature have its way for a change."
"Hmmm, and here I thought it was me getting to have my way." Ny grinned as she ran her fingers through the curls adorning the hard flesh of his chest.
"I'm counting on that." Jim laughed as he divested Nyota of her own uniform top, his hands cupping breasts and removing her bra at the same time.
And suddenly she could wait no longer. Uhura undid his fly and stripped him of his pants, clothes and boots flying as she pulled him down onto the bed with her. She wanted him, all of him, now. But he took control, slowing them down to a pace that would not quite flare as a super nova. Hands deftly claimed her in places that no one had touched since their last time together. Lips caressed and teased tender flesh; teeth nipped and bit until moans of protest were made. Fingers sought and found cavities that begged for attention and then mercy. While tongues slipped in and out, ripping unintelligible sounds from her throat as she squirmed under expert tutelage.
And then she devoured him--his body--familiar yet not only exciting her more. She was not tender; she was not demure; she was demanding and as merciless as a queen with her favorite slave. She swallowed him deep, taking more than she had ever before, reveling in his hiss of ecstasy as she sucked and consumed the hardness that was him.
And then she rode him. Their sweat-drenched bodies glided over each other as they sought another release. Nails raked Sol-tanned flesh. His shaft found depths never explored. It hurt and it felt good. He flipped her and came in from behind--pounding into her--seeking something from her and trying desperately to find it. Pressed deep into the pillows, Uhura reached between her legs and grasped his heavy sac, stroking and massaging until she felt them tense and he shuddered hard against her. Her own body quaked in rapture and she collapsed. Only his strong arm around her waist kept them from tumbling into a pile of spent flesh. He pulled her back, sitting on his heels and holding her until they quit trembling. He kissed the nape of her neck, running his tongue along her skin before biting and marking her as his territory. Uhura yelped and pushed away, falling in a heap on the bed. Turning onto her back, she smiled lazily at him, extending her arms in silent invitation. Jim gave a sated sigh and lay down beside her, slipping his shoulder under Ny's head and pulling her against him.
Tonight they shared an unsustainable passion between themselves and did not care. In the darkness they were one--in the faint glow of the lamp they conquered each other. Only in the bright light of the sun did they relent to the logic and realities of their lives and careers. Tonight, those things did not matter and the sun had yet to rise.
Nyota yawned and blinked in the morning glare of the sun. Jim was still asleep, oblivious as she rested her head on his shoulder. In the unflinching light she looked at him, admiring the bronzed skin over nicely shaped muscles. He had lost more weight since she had seen him those few months ago, making his face lean and angular, somewhat predatory, even in sleep. His hair was darker than before, yet still caught the light beaming in through the balcony door. Following the trail of hair that ran from his navel to a delicious spot hidden beneath the sheets, Uhura's hand surrounded an erection of generous proportions.
"Should your smile worry me?" Jim asked from his vantage point above her, her touch on something so sensitive waking him.
"Only if you don't like wake-up sex, and I happen to know that you do," Uhura laughed as she raised up to kiss him.
"I think you remember a lot of things about me," he laughed against her lips, "let's see what I remember about you." Uhura's body nearly exploded as he showed her what he knew.
They both lazed in each other's arms until it was well past what could politely be called morning. Neither moved for fear it would bring them back to the present and end their little bubble of time together. Was it denial to pretend he did not have to leave, that she did not have a symposium to attend and a presentation to prepare for? Finally, Jim turned on his side so he could gaze into Ny's eyes, a mischievous smile crinkling his eyes.
"What's so funny?" Uhura asked, knowing she was setting herself up.
"Nothing's funny. I was just admiring how you've changed your hair--"
"But, you like it better the other way, right?" Uhura finished for him, she knew he liked it when she wore her hair straighter.
He grinned like a kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar, but not giving up on the cookie. "Well, let's just say that style lends itself to me being able to run my fingers through it." As a demonstration, he poked a hole in her tight curls.
"Stop it!" She giggled and swatted his hand away. "It's easier to take care of like this, and I seem to remember you were very adamant about *not* running your fingers through my hair back then."
"Doesn't mean I didn't think about it though", he rolled onto his back and sighed in belated honesty.
"Hmmm, well, that’s nice to hear, anyway. I'll make you a promise: if I ever serve under your direct command again, I'll wear my hair in a style you prefer. Then I'll know I have your attention." The last bit was said with a very evil grin and a quick kiss to seal the deal.
"And you'd do that too." Kirk laughed as he sat up on the edge of the bed and started to sort through the pile of clothes for some that looked like his.
"How else can I have fun?" Uhura asked as she got up and slipped on her robe. She dialed up some coffee and casually watched as Kirk finished dressing. They were acting as if she saw him off to work every morning, not as if she might not see him again for five years. With his schedule and the push to complete refit in order to meet their mission date, that was more of a reality than her now standing in front of him in a robe drinking coffee.
Turning with an air of someone ready to leave, he shook his head in wry acknowledgement of this new bit of information. "Torturing me is considered fun, is it? I'll make a note of that." Thinking he had a few more minutes before Riley would seek him out, Kirk paused to look at Uhura, to absorb how beautiful she was this morning, how beautiful she was any morning.
"So, are you going to climb back down the trellis or be brave and take the corridor?" Uhura asked when it was obvious he had to go. She was enjoying the banter but they both knew it was just a way to postpone their good-byes.
"What makes you think I can't beam out from here?" Kirk asked with brows askance.
"No reason, I just thought you might have brought along some luggage or something." She smoothed invisible wrinkles out of his uniform tunic, relishing the feel of hard muscle underneath and already regretting how much she was going to miss him.
"Does a briefcase count as luggage? If it does, then I'm busted. So why do I keep Riley around if I have to keep up with stuff?" He grinned, looking down into Uhura's eyes as she fussed over him.
"I've never understood your reasoning for selecting Kevin as your aide. I don't know who is punishing whom in this arrangement." Uhura pretended to scold just a bit. Riley was a 'little terror' and being at HQ had settled him some, but most likely it had just sharpened his skills at being a rogue, con-artist and schmoozer.
"Exactly." Kirk answered as if he had read her mind. "How can I look so sweet and innocent if I don't have someone wicked to compare me to? It worked with Gary--he got all the flak and I got all the glory." He laughed ruefully to himself as some of those memories came flooding back. It still hurt, Gary's loss, but the pain was a dull ache now, not the dagger it had been for years. He had finally forgiven himself for killing Gary--now if he could only forgive himself for other things.
It was rare for Kirk to mention Gary, but Uhura knew the quickest way to shut him down was to call attention to his lapse. Instead, she teased impishly. "Ahhh, kind of like good cop, bad cop. I've seen you in action with that game. Maybe I should be feeling sorry for Riley."
"Don't waste your sympathy on either of us. He keeps me sharp and I promised to keep him out of the brig," Kirk tossed out as if he had had to fulfill that promise a time or two already.
"Well, one could not ask for better than that," Uhura kept up the banter, not willing to let him leave just yet. Maybe, if she just kept talking, he would forget about the Spacedock and ships and all the other demands on his time.
"But I do have to go now, or I won't get another pass anytime soon." Again, he seemed to have read her thoughts and answered them. Then the humor left his face and he became serious, his voice quiet and sincere. "Good luck in your presentation. I'm really sorry I'll miss it."
"I'll send you a copy of it--for, you know--a little light reading." She laughed, trying to bring the previous lightness between them back into the conversation.
"Yes, I'd like that." He smiled, but it was a sad one. "Give my compliments to Captain Decker and thank him for me when you get back. I'm not sure I would have been so generous of your time during a refit if I were still captain." Jim tried to pull back, to become the admiral once again, but was not successful. The pain of her going back to the Enterprise, and him back to San Francisco was very evident in his eyes.
"I will," Uhura whispered, "maybe we can both go fishing with Jelani again before I ship out." It hurt to be poised on the edge like this--no future and little past.
"I'd love to do that," he answered softly and Uhura knew he meant it, but she also recognized the reality of it never happening, not now, not when their lives were headed in opposite directions. Jim leaned down and kissed her softly, a slow, lingering kiss that said goodbye much more eloquently than mere words could do. As he broke the kiss, he trailed a finger along her cheek and down her jaw, his eyes consuming hers, holding them hostage. And then he was gone.
"And I'm going to miss you too," she whispered to her empty room.