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Old October 28 2008, 12:24 AM   #1
SLWatson
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ST:TOS - General Fanfic

So... hi! I'm new (obviously) to this forum here. Real quickly: My name's Steff, I'm a ficcer and fanartist, and I'm actually pretty friendly most of the time. I figure that a good way to introduce myself is with a story or several: In this case, general Star Trek Original Series stories that don't fit into one of my two main storylines. Feedback is loved, but never required. Hope you enjoy!

--

Title: Not Too Soon
Series: ST:TOS
Pairing: Sarek/Amanda
Timeline: 2232
Words: 634
Disclaimer: They all belong to Paramount, not me.
Notes: This was written for KlingonVulcan on the Omega Sector -- Sarek reflects on how fatherhood didn't quite turn out how research suggested.

--

When it had been officially confirmed that his wife was with child, Sarek had immediately started familiarizing himself with the duties of fatherhood. His first course of research was about the most basic of necessities; nutrition, proper clothing, toileting, potential infant illnesses or injuries, everything that would insure that the newborn would be cared for in the most thorough means possible.

His second course of research was about child development. The milestones he could expect the child to reach, and at what age the child would reach them; the most well-researched methods for raising a Vulcan child in a way that would insure success. What games of reason to introduce at what age, what the best way was to provide a safe, stimulating environment where the infant's natural curiosity could be fostered without undue risk.

Sarek had been confident, when Spock was born, that he would be entirely prepared for any course of events. He had researched everything of even partial relevance to child-rearing, determined to make no mistakes.

"I cannot wait until you go to bed," Amanda was saying to their son. Her hair was disheveled, and there were faint dark circles under her eyes. Despite that, however, there was a look in her eyes that Sarek had come to recognize as exasperated good-humor.

"Nooooooo!" Spock replied, a loud, wavering, happy squeal, as he turned and ran on still-awkward legs. None of the appropriate clothes Sarek had so carefully researched adorned his form; the one-and-a-half year old ran naked without shame.

Sarek had just returned home from a day in his office, and took stock of the scene that had become worryingly familiar. Several pots and pans were laying on the kitchen floor, some of them nested and some of them just strewn around. There were also a number of utensils, in a configuration that had no discernible logic, to go with them. Several cabinets were ajar.

In the sitting area, Spock's toys were likewise everywhere. Logical toys that were meant to appeal to his senses; puzzles that were intended to develop his problem-solving skills, mess-free drawing boards meant to foster his creativity. None of those seemed to be used for their intended purpose. Instead, Spock would take them and attempt to use them as a ladder with which to climb and reach things that were put up specifically to be out of his reach.

When Sarek had researched, no texts had mentioned this chaos. No article warned that a new toddler's favorite, and sometimes only word would be 'no!' No amount of reading could have prepared him for this.

Now that the threat of bed had faded, Spock came around the corner of a chair with a pre-lingual sound of joy, crashing whole-body into Sarek's formal robes and then clutching them so that he wouldn't fall. Then he looked up at his father with a wide, unabashed smile and sighed happily.

There were many times when Sarek felt his control being tested, beyond anything he had ever quite expected. Moments where he knew that, if he allowed himself to, he would get intensely frustrated with the sheer chaos that seemed to reign from the time Spock opened his eyes, to the time he fell asleep. Amanda sometimes reflected that frustration, as she chased their strong, young son around the house in an attempt to clothe and diaper him. Sarek was amazed at her patience, and considered it extremely admirable.

He rested a hand on the top of his son's head, and looked at his wife, defaulting to ancient wisdom in face of the trials they were currently facing. "This too shall pass."

But even in her obvious weariness and exasperation, he also understood when she replied, "Hopefully not too soon."
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Old October 28 2008, 12:30 AM   #2
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Wow.

That was funny and touching all at the same time, and in so brief a story to boot!

Very well done, and welcome to the fanfic board!
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Old October 28 2008, 12:56 AM   #3
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

I agree... wow is right. I generally don't read other fics than my own, but your description grabbed my interest, and I have to say, I REALLY liked this... you captured the tenderness and emotions very well, and I could really "see" that scene playing out, with Sarek and all.

VERY good job... I hope you continue here.

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Old October 28 2008, 03:13 AM   #4
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Gibraltar wrote: View Post
Wow.

That was funny and touching all at the same time, and in so brief a story to boot!

Very well done, and welcome to the fanfic board!
Thank you very much! For both the encouragement and the welcome.


BolianAdmiral wrote: View Post
I agree... wow is right. I generally don't read other fics than my own, but your description grabbed my interest, and I have to say, I REALLY liked this... you captured the tenderness and emotions very well, and I could really "see" that scene playing out, with Sarek and all.

VERY good job... I hope you continue here.

-BolianAdmiral
Wow, thanks! I sure hope I can continue to live up to that. I was challenged to write a young Spock, and agonized for three days on how to do it until one of my best friends pointed out that I do have plenty of experience with babies and toddlers. So, this bit was born. Thanks so much for the encouragement -- I chew nails whenever I try to write Spock, though it seems he's the one other people most request that I write for 'em. Always breathe a sigh of relief when I do okay.
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Old October 28 2008, 06:36 AM   #5
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

What a powerful, compact little piece you've written here! I LOVE these kinds of "everyday life" stories even in the midst of these fantastical, epic universes--and I'm glad to see that I'm not alone in that.

One interesting point, though: why did Sarek not think to look in books about raising human infants? Was he just in denial that Spock might have some human characteristics?
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Old October 28 2008, 07:13 AM   #6
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Nerys Dukat wrote: View Post
What a powerful, compact little piece you've written here! I LOVE these kinds of "everyday life" stories even in the midst of these fantastical, epic universes--and I'm glad to see that I'm not alone in that.
Oh, Lord, no. I tend to take a real character-eye view with my stuff, and it just thrills me all to little pieces that you liked this and like those kinds of stories. Got any of yours posted? I can never get enough real character-driven stuff.

One interesting point, though: why did Sarek not think to look in books about raising human infants? Was he just in denial that Spock might have some human characteristics?
I don't think it was denial, so much as kind of expecting Amanda to "know" that side of things and handle the human side of it. Logical and sometimes wise as Sarek is, I think he was deep down pulling for Spock to be in his own image and only perhaps came to the conclusion that Spock had to be true to both halves of his heritage much later. I don't think he sees the human blood as anything bad, but has a definite bias on which way he would like his son to go... so, he wanted to concentrate on the Vulcan half, and likely thought Amanda would be better at nurturing the human side.

Does that make sense?

And thanks so much for the comment! It really made me smile.
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Old October 28 2008, 07:34 AM   #7
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Title: Dad
Rating: G
Timeline: 2253
Words: 655
Disclaimer: Paramount's, not mine, not for profit.
Notes: Written for my friend youthculture; Len McCoy reflects as he makes breakfast for his wife and daughter. Way pre-series. Also, very bittersweet. Originally posted here.

--

The kitchen was still cool in the predawn light. Leonard McCoy didn't turn the lights on though; just moved around quietly, getting everything ready. Made a pot of coffee. Laid his head to one side, then the other, trying to stretch the muscles of his neck which never totally relaxed these days. Outside, the sky was beginning to brighten. Inside of the kitchen, it was cool and dark.

He waited until there was enough coffee to pour himself a cup, then pulled out the eggs, the instant pancake mix, and the emphatically not instant grits. Maybe he couldn't be home when Joanna got home from pre-school, and maybe he spent a lot of time at the hospital, and maybe he wouldn't even be able to tuck her into bed, but he could make her breakfast.

Jocelyn had gotten distant again, but he'd make her breakfast, too. He knew that it was hard. But he wasn't going to be a resident forever. Eventually, he would be finished with all of his schooling, and then he could open up a private practice with normal, easy hours, fulfilling an ideal that his father had wanted and had never gotten.

As he started coordinating breakfast, still sipping his coffee, still sometimes hopelessly trying to stretch his neck enough to ease the muscles there, he let his mind roam over that. He was tired, almost always, and the personal thoughts were scattered because of it, though when he was at work it was all crystal focus. But he thought about Dad, and medicine; thought about what it takes to be a good doctor. There was no doubt that it took knowledge, but it also took skill. And with both skill and knowledge, it took compassion and decency.

David McCoy had never really gotten the chance to follow his ideal of a private practice, but he had told his son about it, and had tried to explain awkwardly. Thinking about it still hurt. Len still felt keenly the loss, the death of his father. But even more, he felt keenly the fact that he had never gotten to know that man better.

They had never been close, and now, they never would be. But once his schooling was over, he was going to spend as much time with Joanna as he could. And he would teach her how to be decent and compassionate in whatever line of work she chose. He would tell her the stories of his life, the stories that he wished he knew about his Dad.

And he would teach her how to make grits; one thing his father had taught him that he held onto.

Len wasn't nearly a chef, but he could whip up a mean breakfast. Finally, he turned the lights on, just as he started really cooking. In about ten minutes, his wife and baby girl would be up, and they would sit at the kitchen table. He'd try to focus enough to carry on a non-broken conversation. And he would make Jocelyn her coffee; she liked it with cream and sugar. Maybe she wouldn't seem so distant.

One day, he looked forward to having a long, relaxed breakfast. The kind where you sat at the table like a family, took your time eating. Went over your plans for the day. Told stories, or jokes. Eased into the day, instead of rushed into it. The kind of breakfast that he'd never quite had, though he knew what one was all about.

He smiled to himself as he cooked, hearing his daughter coming down the steps, telling his wife all about a dream she had. He'd listen to it himself when she sat down, and he would maybe tell her about one of his own dreams.

Someday, one day, they would have time for more.
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Old October 28 2008, 08:33 AM   #8
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

I like your style. The Spock story was especially telling-I have a 2 1/2 year old boy at home and, with a name change or two, it could have been my house at 5:30pm. Well done. And Welcome!
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Old October 28 2008, 08:47 AM   #9
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Mistral wrote: View Post
I like your style. The Spock story was especially telling-I have a 2 1/2 year old boy at home and, with a name change or two, it could have been my house at 5:30pm. Well done. And Welcome!
Thank you so much! I have a one-and-a-half year old son (so you can see where I got the toddler-Spock's characterization) and a three year old daughter. Writing what I know in this case. And thank you for the welcome, too!
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Old October 28 2008, 12:16 PM   #10
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Welcome to the board! I'm a sucker for TOS era stories and I found of your offerings here most enjoyable reads. Those of us who have had experiences with toddlers know fully well what Sarek is going through and the Dr. McCoy piece was very powerful as we know that in the end he'll make the same mistakes his father made.

Very well done vignettes--short and powerful. I hope we see more of you and your stories here.
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Old October 28 2008, 04:22 PM   #11
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

I like the new story, definitely.

I can almost hear "Cat's in the Cradle" playing, as I read the McCoy story--it just has that same emotional feel to it. (Which is quite the fit, considering the time period of TOS and McCoy's own old-fashionedness.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2YblA...eature=related

[quote]
SLWatson wrote: View Post
Nerys Dukat wrote: View Post
What a powerful, compact little piece you've written here! I LOVE these kinds of "everyday life" stories even in the midst of these fantastical, epic universes--and I'm glad to see that I'm not alone in that.
Oh, Lord, no. I tend to take a real character-eye view with my stuff, and it just thrills me all to little pieces that you liked this and like those kinds of stories. Got any of yours posted? I can never get enough real character-driven stuff.
Well, the Sigils and Unions series is very new compared to a lot of the others here, but I have a newspaper editorial piece that finds out more about the life of the late Cardassian dissident, Tekeny Ghemor, and picks up on some of these "little" incidents that meant a lot to the people around him.

http://trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=66171

One interesting point, though: why did Sarek not think to look in books about raising human infants? Was he just in denial that Spock might have some human characteristics?
I don't think it was denial, so much as kind of expecting Amanda to "know" that side of things and handle the human side of it. Logical and sometimes wise as Sarek is, I think he was deep down pulling for Spock to be in his own image and only perhaps came to the conclusion that Spock had to be true to both halves of his heritage much later. I don't think he sees the human blood as anything bad, but has a definite bias on which way he would like his son to go... so, he wanted to concentrate on the Vulcan half, and likely thought Amanda would be better at nurturing the human side.

Does that make sense?

And thanks so much for the comment! It really made me smile.
You're very welcome.

And it does make sense...from what I see, I think most parents do harbor fantasies deep down that their child will be just like them.

Regrets aren't logical--but I definitely think Sarek had them later on.
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Old October 28 2008, 04:35 PM   #12
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

The adage, "good things come in small packages," certainly rings true with these two short-stories. I enjoyed both of them - Spock as a typical, energetic toddler challenging Sarek's carefully planned, logical child-rearing plans was priceless! But I really connected with the poignant scene of McCoy fixing breakfast for his family in the early morning hours. It was all the more bitter-sweet, knowing how things would eventually turn out for this family and how his life would forever change.

Very, very well done!
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Old October 28 2008, 06:01 PM   #13
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Your McCoy story is equally well done. A brief snippet of the manís day seen through the prism of what will be, and made all the more tragic for it.

Iíve been there myself, watching my children grow and wondering when Iíll have time to slow down and enjoy the moment. Never enough time, and once itís gone... itís gone.

Very nice, thank you.
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Old October 28 2008, 06:19 PM   #14
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

DavidFalkayn wrote: View Post
Welcome to the board! I'm a sucker for TOS era stories and I found of your offerings here most enjoyable reads. Those of us who have had experiences with toddlers know fully well what Sarek is going through and the Dr. McCoy piece was very powerful as we know that in the end he'll make the same mistakes his father made.

Very well done vignettes--short and powerful. I hope we see more of you and your stories here.
Heya! Thanks for the comment! And yeah, when I wrote 'Not Too Soon', I was really glad to be able to write a story other parents or folks who are around babies would just GET. As for the McCoy story... I'm not one-hundred percent thrilled with it, with the style I used to write it, but I'm thoroughly glad you liked it. It was more'n a little bittersweet to write, and more bitter than sweet. Thank you again for the comment!

Nerys Dukat wrote: View Post
I like the new story, definitely.

I can almost hear "Cat's in the Cradle" playing, as I read the McCoy story--it just has that same emotional feel to it. (Which is quite the fit, considering the time period of TOS and McCoy's own old-fashionedness.)
Yah. I've never been very happy with that one, but I'm glad I got the point across with it. Thank you for the comment, too!

Well, the Sigils and Unions series is very new compared to a lot of the others here, but I have a newspaper editorial piece that finds out more about the life of the late Cardassian dissident, Tekeny Ghemor, and picks up on some of these "little" incidents that meant a lot to the people around him.

http://trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=66171
I'm gonna have to read that. I don't (rather guiltily) know a whole lot about Cardassians, but anything that shows the more small, life-and-mind-shaping stuff is great with me.

You're very welcome.

And it does make sense...from what I see, I think most parents do harbor fantasies deep down that their child will be just like them.
Yah. My hubby and I do, and we're both HUMAN parents. ::laughs:: So, I figured it'd be even more prominant there, though perhaps not to the point where it's a big problem. At least until Spock reaches the age where he has to commit more to one or the other path.

Regrets aren't logical--but I definitely think Sarek had them later on.
I think so, too. Still, I ultimately think he was a good man; flawed, but with genuine intentions.

TheLoneRedshirt wrote: View Post
The adage, "good things come in small packages," certainly rings true with these two short-stories. I enjoyed both of them - Spock as a typical, energetic toddler challenging Sarek's carefully planned, logical child-rearing plans was priceless! But I really connected with the poignant scene of McCoy fixing breakfast for his family in the early morning hours. It was all the more bitter-sweet, knowing how things would eventually turn out for this family and how his life would forever change.

Very, very well done!
Thank you much! The Spock story gave me fits for days until I decided to write what I know -- babies! McCoy's tale, both in canon and then explored some in the novels, has always struck me, too. He was so utterly human, and the notion that a bad breakup sent him into Starfleet makes him all the more poignant. I'd venture to say that he's my second favorite character to write, from the canon cast. Thanks again! You guys are just amazingly encouraging!
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Old October 28 2008, 06:22 PM   #15
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Re: ST:TOS - General Fanfic

Gibraltar wrote: View Post
Your McCoy story is equally well done. A brief snippet of the manís day seen through the prism of what will be, and made all the more tragic for it.

Iíve been there myself, watching my children grow and wondering when Iíll have time to slow down and enjoy the moment. Never enough time, and once itís gone... itís gone.

Very nice, thank you.
You and I both -- I'm lucky in a lot of ways, that my kids are still very young and I'm a stay-at-home-mother, but even I get those awful moments where I realize they'll never be little itty babies again, and that one day they're gonna go out into a big world. Really slams home the dual-nature of parenting -- the joys and the heartbreaks that live hand-in-hand.

Thanks so much for the comment!
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