Sometimes, Leo thinks that Jim has a sixth sense. It’s the only explanation for his special ability to (1) detect the behaviors that will most annoy his CMO and then (2) exhibit them as often as possible.
It’s as a result of this particular ‘gift’ of Jim’s that Leonard was currently standing on the bridge, red-faced and shouting in front of the whole damn gamma-shift.
Their esteemed captain had come back from an away mission last night, insisting he didn’t need a medical assessment. Then, at dinner this evening, Spock had let slip that Jim had taken a pretty serious fall into a ravine during the course of their exploration. Which, of course, explained his absence in the mess: he was avoiding Leonard. The doctor had tried comming Jim to come to medbay twice since, to no response. It was ridiculous. From what Spock said, he had to have at least two cracked ribs and possible minor internal bleeding. And yet here he was, working his way through a triple shift for no reason other than desire to avoid medical examination. Leo had had enough. He’d marched his righteously pissed-off self up to the bridge, and…
...all hell had broken loose.
“Damnit, Jim! You’re supposed to set an example for your crew! If you won’t come to me when you’re injured, how the hell can I expect them to?” He hadn’t thought about the fact that they’d have an audience, but he doubted it would have stopped him at this point anyway. He knew Jim well enough to know that he could only be caught if cornered. And now, pinned between the rage of his CMO and the wide eyes of his gamma-shift bridge crew, he was about as cornered as he could get.
“Bones, listen, I was gonna- “
“Like hell you were!” He spat back. “I may have been born at night, Jim, but it wasn’t last night. We’re doing this. Now.” He glared around at the crew, few as they were. “Out! All of you! Now!”
“Bones,” Jim attempted to calm him. “We’re not in medbay-”
“No, we’re not! And you’re bleeding into your damn fool chest cavity. So unless you all want your captain to keep going without medical attention- “ He turned to level a glare at the four gamma crewmen, but he needn’t have worried.
They were gone, the doors sliding shut neatly behind them.
“Better,” Leo groused, turning back to face his wayward captain. “Computer, disable security video feed, medical override code jay-oh-four-two-seven-McCoy.”
“Confirmed. Security cameras disabled.” Leo nodded, satisfied, and rounded on Jim.
“Now, you. Strip.” Jim cocked an eyebrow, but the doctor cut him off before he could comment. “Don’t get smart, I’m pissed at you. Spock said the majority of damage was localized to your torso, so, shirt off.”
This time Jim merely complied, wincing as he lifted his shirt off over what Leo now knew were broken ribs. If the hitch in his breathing as he moved weren’t enough, the pattern of bruising over his left side would be.
“Idiot,” he mumbled as he set his pack on Spock’s science station and removed the tricorder. A quick scan revealed two fractures underneath a not-inconsiderable subcutaneous hematoma. It wouldn’t kill him, but it probably hurt like a bitch.
“Have you taken anything for the pain?”
“You’d know if I had. I don’t keep hypos hidden in my quarters.”
“Well not everyone likes their ibuprofen delivered intramuscularly,” McCoy replied, eyes rolling. But he was loading a hypo even as he said it, holding it out towards Jim like an olive branch. “May I?”
Jim sighed, but nodded his head. At least his shirt was already off; it saved Leo the trouble of going for the neck. He pressed the tip against Jim’s bicep and depressed the plunger slowly, which at least made the delivery less uncomfortable.
“There, that’s all I can do for you now. You’ll have to come with me to medbay for the osteoregen.” Jim nodded, pulling his shirt back on with considerable effort.
“I would have done that eventually, you know. There was no reason to barge in here and terrify the gamma-shift kids like that.” Leo refused to meet his eyes, busying himself with closing up his medbag.
“Yeah, I know. But it’s all I got.” Jim stilled, puzzled.
“What is that supposed to mean?” Leo sighed.
“Listen, kid. I can’t protect you. I couldn’t protect you from Nero, or Khan, and I sure as hell can’t protect you from your damn stupid self. All I ever get to be in charge of is putting you back together again when the rest of the world is done beatin’ on you. And it ain’t much, but it’s mine. So, forgive me if I get a little pissy when someone gets in the way of me doin’ it.”
His mouth had apparently developed sentience and flown the nest, completely out of his control. He acknowledged his lapse in judgement only by blushing furiously, lifting the bag off of Spock’s desk and onto his shoulder. He moved to leave, but a hand on his elbow stopped him.
“Hey,” Jim’s voice was strange and soft. “It’s not all you’ve got.” Leo glanced up, exasperated, and waited for him to continue.
But apparently Jim’s mouth had declared independence, too, because suddenly he was kissing Leo and Leo had the insane thought that he hoped they’d be happy together.
Their mouths, that is.
He knows he and Jim are going to be just fine.