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."