Title: Earth Kids Are Assholes
Summary: Spock and Kirk make friends while bleeding. So exactly what happened, except they're in grade school. AU. Gen.
Author's Notes: I was discussing the movie with butterflykiki and she said something like, "If Kirk and Spock had met when they were thirteen they'd have been BFF." And this fic was born.
Disclaimer: Pssssht yeah right.
It is summer on Earth, and by their reckoning Spock is eleven years old; he is a bit younger on Vulcan. The school breaks on both worlds roughly coincide for once, and his mother takes him with her to meet his Terran cousins, to see the family she has not seen since she pledged herself to Sarek. Spock cannot argue with his parents' reasoning that, as a child of two worlds, it is illogical for him to only experience one of them, but he does not think it logical to believe that human children will be any different from Vulcan children in attacking what they view as different. He suspects the summer will go badly.
His cousins accept him, if with a certain wariness. He is blood of their blood, one of their own. They may think he is "weird," but they don't have to like him to include him. His Vulcan reserve probably does not help, but they make the effort, at least. The obligation of the blood tie is stronger than personal disdain. In this, humans are very like Vulcans.
His cousins' friends, however, are under no such obligation.
His cousins have their own lives, things to do besides entertain their half-alien cousin who does not seem to want to be entertained, anyway. Alex disappears to 'summer camp' partway through June. Some of the others have athletic team practices. Sarah's parents are divorced, and she spends a week here and a week there. Somedays none of them are around. Spock tends to spend these days studying or meditating, but sometimes his mother encourages him to go outside and "get some fresh air." He doesn't argue the logic of it; she's right. He shouldn't spend all day indoors while visiting another planet for the first time.
Earth is, he knows from his studies, remarkably biodiverse, far moreso than Vulcan. He thinks this is part of what is going on with humans; there are so many things on their planet that do not make sense that they cannot possibly be logical about everything in response. Iowa is very flat and very green, and cooler and wetter than he is used to. His mother tells him that other parts of the planet are more like home, but Iowa is still perfectly tolerable.
So on this particular day he goes for a walk.
He is several blocks from his aunt's when the boys start following him. They are friends of his cousin Brad, boys Brad seems embarrassed to have around, but still, somehow, friends. They are a few years older and bigger than Spock. He ignores them and keeps walking. Everything they toss at him is a variant on something he's heard before, the flip side of the coin. His Vulcan ears and his eyebrows and his haircut instead of his human eyes. His father instead of his mother. His lack of emotion instead of the showing thereof. He ignores them and keeps walking until one of them grabs him by the shoulder and spins him around and says, "I'm talking to you, freak," and Spock hauls off and punches him in the nose because being proactive at this point is only logical, and then the other three jump him, so possibly it was less logical than he thought.
A sixth boy joins the fight with a wild sort of battle cry, and it takes Spock a few seconds to realize he's on his side, and once the two of them are working together they aren't able to win, but they're able to fight their way free and run. The boy leads him down one side street and then another, until they're pounding up the back steps into the boy's house and slamming the door behind them, and then Spock really gets a good look at his rescuer.
Neither of them will know it for years yet, but a legend begins like this:
The blond human boy grins at him through a split lip and says, "Hey. I'm Jim Kirk."
Spock spits green blood into the kitchen sink and says, "Spock."
"So where'd you learn to fight?"
Jim Kirk's grin widens. "Cool. Come on. We have a first aid kit. Why were they beating on you like that?"
"I am not human."
Jim gives him a look he cannot decipher, but the smile does not fade. "No, I totally never would have noticed."
"Why did you do that?"
He shrugs. "Why not?"
When he gets back to his aunt's house, his mother asks him what happened to him, and he says, "I made a friend."
She arches one eyebrow. Others would say 'almost as well as a Vulcan,' but she is his mother, and he knows better. She says, "With your fists?"
He thinks about it. "Yes. With my fists."
His aunt laughs. "Congratulations, Amanda. He's finally mastered the culture of eleven-year-old human boys."
Spock doesn't understand the joke, but it makes his mother smile.
They are inseparable for the rest of that summer. Jim's mother is off-planet on assignment for Starfleet, and his stepfather is, as far as Spock can tell, a waste of matter, so Jim spends most of his time at Spock's aunt's. He likes Spock's mother, and she likes him. Spock's aunt calls him charming. Spock's cousins call him 'that crazy Kirk kid,' and can't believe Spock's made friends with him, which makes Spock like him even more. Jim shows him how to fight dirty. Spock shows him fascinating things they can do with science, because Jim is surprisingly intelligent and can actually wrap his head around it.
Then the summer ends, and Spock goes back to Vulcan. He and Jim trade comms a few times, then he gets a txtwave: Spock, trashed Roy's car. Going to juvie. Don't wait up. Jim, and then he doesn't hear from him again. Spock beats up the boy who calls his mother a whore. He has a whole argument about how if someone insults your mother's honor it is only logical to defend it by breaking the other guy's nose, which he learned from Jim, that he never quite gets around to using because no one is really angry. He concludes that everyone already tacitly agrees that it is logical to break the nose of someone who calls your mother a whore.
The school breaks do not coincide that year, so they do not go back to Earth.
The first time he sees his name on the Kobayashi Maru test roster, he thinks it must be some other James T. Kirk. The second time, he thinks it is a mistake. Then this person comes back for a third go, and he realizes it could be no one else and goes to watch. Then Jim hacks the test right in front of him. If he were not so annoyed he might very well smile, just a little.
He thinks, but does not say: Figures.