A Little Sympathy
Barely PG; one very mild cuss word
'Scruffy' by InfiniteViking
All Paramount's, not mine.
Notes: This is a bit of kind of silly, fluffy humor. It also may explain why Spock was so zen later on with the space hippies.
Shore leave had been surprisingly pleasant. McCoy wasn't sure that he would enjoy it, but it had surprised him. It was a routine stop, in this case -- an average Earth colony on a nice world called Chara II. The planet's original ecology had been pretty much wiped out by Earth native species, a mistake made when colonization was still in its fledgling steps well more than a century ago, and so going down there was a good deal like going home.
Jim and Spock had both gone, but Jim ended up having to return to the Enterprise
early to handle the subspace calls about their last mission, most of them looking for an explanation for his actions then. Spock, on the other hand...
If someone would have told McCoy that he would have been able to spend that kind of time in Spock's company and not lose his mind, he wouldn't have believed them. But that was exactly what had happened.
Of course, the fact that Spock had been arrested might have had something to do with it.
Chara II had likewise somehow become home to a good number of alternative lifestyles. Put more succinctly... hippies. The planet was crawling with hippies. Whole towns full of them had sprung up and had established their own little governments... well, McCoy wasn't sure there was anything particularly government about them, but he had to call them something. And Spock had broken the law.
"I fail to see the logic in singing songs to the sun as it rises. The sun isn't sentient, and therefore cannot possibly react to the gesture."
The group of people had looked at the Vulcan with an incredible amount of pity and understanding. McCoy had wisely kept his mouth shut. He was a human... well, really, tried to be an 'anythingitarian' and so long as the people were healthy, happy and not committing any atrocities or causing anyone pain, he saw no problems with their lifestyle. Sure, he personally thought that the amount of singing, dancing and otherwise was a little silly, but everyone in the community was there by their free will, and they really were healthy and happy.
Spock, who did believe in IDIC, was still not very good at keeping his logical conclusions to himself and proceeded to elaborate on exactly why he found these rituals to be illogical and a waste of energy and resources. So, the hippies arrested him.
Spock also happened to believe in respecting the law. He was stuck good.
For the next three days, the Vulcan had to adhere to the laws of the community. No bars or cells, he simply had to serve out his sentence by being a participant in the community and obeying the laws of it. Those laws insisted that he bathe in a stream, not shave or otherwise defile his natural appearance, wear clothing that was drawn respectfully from the land, and sing and dance in accordance to community law. He worked in the community's gardens. He went with the aura-readers to look for trees that could be harvested for lumber. And even though McCoy knew that it probably rankled him, under his calm exterior, Spock sang right along with the rest of them.
McCoy, of course, could not help but stick around. He might have gone and visited other places on Chara II, but Spock living the hippy lifestyle was too much for him to resist. He didn't even have to say anything -- after a few hours of Spock looking up to see his grinning face, Spock had done a very good job of not making eye contact with McCoy thereafter.
After three days where Spock had lived the hippy lifestyle, he was released with a full-pardon and many warm hugs. That was almost as good as the initial arrest.
They beamed back to find a rather harried looking Jim Kirk waiting for them in the transporter room.
The captain took a long look at his first officer in sandals, and a five o'clock shadow that was just starting to really come in good, wearing brightly colored woven clothing and flowers around his neck. "You're..."
McCoy beamed a smile. "Looks pretty peaceful, huh, Jim? Sure, he's a little scruffy, but I think this shore leave was an enlightening experience for Mister Spock here."
Spock cleared his throat, quietly, a sure sign of his discomfort. "I am... relieved to be back aboard. If you would excuse me, I would like to change into my proper duty attire."
"Sure," Jim said, though he was still staring at Spock like he couldn't quite believe it. It was only after the vulcan left that he looked at McCoy. "Do I want to know what that was all about?"
McCoy took a deep breath and let it out in a happy sigh. "You don't wanna miss it."
And as they left, and McCoy proceeded to tell the whole story, the thought occurred to him that the next time Spock encountered hippies, he might be a little more sympathetic, or at least appear to be. Of course, when he thought that... he never did realize that it would come back to bite him in the ass.