Okay. Now--next scene. It takes place a few days later.
Now, let me semi-apologize in advance for bringing up one of TOS's most maligned episodes. The truth is...I actually liked
that ep--if only for the music.
Star Trek: Aventine
A Rendezvous With Destiny
“Captain’s Log, supplemental: It has been a day since we have crossed the border into the space claimed by the Imperial Romulan State. As of now, there are no signs of hostility. We are proceeding on schedule, at maximum warp.”
* * *
Ezri heared the music, as it filled the shuttle with a golden, flowing harmony. It reminded her of a harp—no, not quite. It took her a moment to recognize it as a Vulcan lyre.
She turned to Spock. He was sitting down, strumming the instrument without any visible effort. He played as a master.
She smiled. “Did you bring that along?”
Spock nodded. “I did, Captain.”
Ezri leaned back in her seat, closed her eyes, and listened some more. It was so…peaceful…so soothing. She felt as if her spirit were rising and gliding along with the notes he played. And as the song ran its course, she felt…like there wasn’t any pain in this life at all—or at least, none worth noticing.
Spock paused, having apparently finished the tune.
Ezri opened her eyes, and turned to Spock again, her smile growing. “That was…beautiful.”
Spock nodded in acceptance. “Thank you, Captain.”
Ezri paused for a moment, as a thought occurred to her. “You know…when the conference is over…you might want to consider playing for us.”
She chuckled. “Something of a tradition on the Aventine
. Every so often, the crew performs a…well, it’s called a ‘jam session’. You know what that is?”
A smile played on Spock’s face. “I…have had some most…unique
experiences regarding such matters of recreation. One particular incident involved a group of youths, led by one Dr. Serven, who was conducting a search for a…personal paradise of a sort. They had performed one such session for the crew of the Enterprise
. The music was analogous to a human musical multi-genre known as…‘the oldies’.”
Ezri burst out laughing. “And I’ll bet you played alongside them, too.”
“I did. I must admit, I have a…distinct affinity for educating myself in various forms of musical composition. I found the experience most…”
Ezri lowered an eyebrow with a grin. “…fascinating
Spock nodded. “Yes.”
Ezri shook her head, as the mental image came to her of Spock, sitting down with a group of “hippies”, playing his lyre like a… “You enjoyed every minute of it, didn’t you?”
, Captain? That would suggest…an emotion.”
Ezri pointed a finger. “Spock…you can’t
fool me. Especially not after…”
She stopped, realizing that she had brought up the mindmeld. Her smile vanished.
Spock frowned. “You are…still disturbed by the incident.”
Ezri swallowed, and nodded. They hadn’t discussed the meld after that one exchange immediately afterwards—and, for those two days following, they had tried their best to put it behind them. Still…
After a moment, she spoke. “Spock…can I ask you something?”
Spock set the lyre down, beside his seat. “Of course.”
She hesitated. Might as well. Now’s as good a time as any
…. “I…guess I could answer this on my own, if…I looked at those memories long enough. But…Spock, have you ever…formed a bond with someone—a deep
, maybe even spiritual
bond…with someone you deeply cared for?”
Spock leaned forward slightly, and his manner seemed to intensify. “Yes…I have.”
Ezri leaned forward as well. “And…did you find yourself desiring to…end this bond, and set out to follow a new path—one that effectively…left that person behind?”
Spock seemingly had to think for a moment, but he nodded. “I did.”
you end it?”
“Yes…for a time.”
Ezri paused for a moment. Come on, Ezri. You’ve come this far. You can ask him.
“And…during that time…how badly did you regret…ending that relationship?”
Spock didn’t answer at first. But to Ezri, it seemed as if a light had gone on in the ambassador’s mind—as if he were beginning to find an answer to a question that had been bothering him.
“I assume, Captain…that you are speaking from personal experience?”
Ezri blinked. “Spock…I think…”
“Forgive me. I have excessively pried into your personal affairs already.”
“Oh, no, Spock—it’s quite all right.” She leaned back, and sighed. “And…it was
the right question to ask.”
“Perhaps—although you did not answer.”
Ezri smirked. “I don’t recall your answering my
Spock nodded. “As you say, Captain. In any event…despite my desire at the time to maintain total emotional control…yes. I regretted my decision most deeply, despite the fact that I had considered my choice to have been the right one—at first.”
“And…when you began to doubt…?”
Spock stared at her, and slowly nodded. “My regret worsened…until it threatened to break my control.”
Ezri nodded. So…you
do understand, after all…don’t you, Spock?
“Out of curiosity,” she asked, unable to resist, “may I ask you who that person was?”
“You may. It was my mother.”
Ezri flinched in disappointment. Right. Not
quite what I was looking for, but…sure.
“Captain…may I ask what you
were referring to?”
She froze. “No.”
Oh, great answer, Ezri. It’s not like you have your
pride to worry about…is it?
Ezri sighed, and amended her answer. “…Not yet. When I have more time to…recover from…”
Spock nodded. “I understand.”
They stared at each other, silent. And for a brief moment, Ezri wondered if, somehow…she could truly allow herself to think of this man…as a friend.