"Sure, Spock, what's on your mind?" Captain Kirk continued walking down the hallway of his Enterprise as Spock fell into step beside him.
"I had hoped to speak with you in private."
Kirk eyed him warily. "Is everything... uh..."
"My health is fine," Spock said quickly, quenching all thoughts Kirk might have had of the big P. F. Not that it would ever be a problem again, of course, but the entire subject was still extremely embarrassing. "This concerns a matter of... interpersonal relations."
"Ah." Kirk's eyes grew wise and his smile smug. "So that's why Bones stepped on my foot this morning."
"He injured you?"
"No, not really, but I did think it was strange that he didn't even apologize."
"He has been exceptionally emotional all morning. I have overheard lab technicians conversing about his more than usual grouchiness."
"What caused it?"
"An overreaction to an irrational disappointment," Spock replied superciliously. "More often even than other humans his emotions--"
"Are your responsibility now, to some degree," Kirk interjected smoothly.
"That is more difficult than you make it sound. Human emotions are an unpredictable, chaotic series of events."
"You make us seem like the planetary weather," Kirk quipped. "Bones isn't that hard to figure out. He's old fashioned. Wants the good things in life, and if he gets them, he's prepared to give in return--generously."
"I do give," Spock said, sounding a tinge troubled. He seemed genuinely puzzled, maybe even hurt, at the idea that he was in some way failing McCoy.
"I know you do," said Kirk. "Maybe it would help if you told me what happened, exactly?"
"We were eating breakfast in the mess hall at the same table as Ensign Chekov and Yeoman Landon. Chekov and Landon were making plans to celebrate the upcoming Earth holiday of Valentine's Day by viewing a program together and eating authentic Russian food in Ensign Chekov's quarters. Dr. McCoy and the yeoman started a conversation about Valentine's Day, and she asked him if we were doing anything special on that date. At that point I commented that I find Valentine's Day to be an illogical holiday and I did not plan to do anything unusual merely because it will be approximately the fourteenth of February on Terra, but that I wished her and Chekov a pleasant evening."
Kirk was shaking his head. His hand was at his temple, and he exhaled loudly. "Spock...."
"Dr. McCoy became irritated and called me a 'heartless calculator', to which I replied that it was illogical to celebrate a date that has no meaning for us."
"Well, it's supposed to be a special day for couples..."
"It is merely a relic of the Classical feast of Lupercalia, which I have no wish to revisit."
"Obviously not. Nobody's asking you to run around the Enterprise with a goatskin over your head," said Kirk. "But I've never seen you have this kind of problem with a holiday before."
"Other Terran holidays are celebrated on the anniversary of the event they commemorate," Spock explained. "Americans celebrate the signing of the document in which they declared themselves independent of Great Britain. The births of various religious or political leaders are also logically placed holidays."
"So you don't believe in Valentine's Day because it doesn't commemorate--"
"--any date of significance in my relationship with the doctor." Spock paused. "This is why I find it illogical, yet he persists in finding fault with my perfectly reasonable explanation."
"It's probably making him feel like he's the only one in love," Kirk commented. "That's never a good way to feel."
"If that is the case, such a belief is not justified," said Spock, his eyes wide in earnest.
"Does he know that?"
"He should." But Spock didn't seem sure.
"That's one of the reasons some people take Valentine's Day so seriously," said Kirk gently. "It's the one day out of the year when lovers take time out to tell each other how much their relationship means, and how much they are loved."
"Therein lies the illogic," Spock argued. "One day, chosen at random, should not be the only time such love is expressed. If a pair are truly well-mated, every day is valued, and appreciated."
"That's very romantic, Spock!" said Kirk, smiling. "But does Bones have any idea that's how you really feel?"
Spock opened his mouth and closed it again. "We have melded in the past," he eventually offered lamely.
"I doubt he catalogued your mind like a computer database," said Kirk. "Spock--do you feel that... January 1 is just as worthy of celebrating a relationship as February 14?"
"Certainly," said Spock.
"What about August 2?"
"Then," said Kirk slyly, "what about February *thir*teenth?"
"Logically, yes." Spock raised his eyebrow. "Are you suggesting..."
"....that you knock him off his feet by being exceptionally dashing and romantic the day *before* Valentine's Day?" Kirk grinned. "Absolutely."
"That is an excellent suggestion."
"He'll have a great time, it'll put his mind at ease, and he'll go around all day Wednesday feeling smug. He'll wake up happy, before Valentine's Day even starts."
Spock looked at Kirk with warm eyes, the closest he felt like getting to a smile. "Thank you, Jim. From both of us."
"Anytime, Spock. I know this is new for you, and you're both my best friends. I want to help you both in any way I can."
"I will need your help picking out presents for him. Most likely he will require some form of confection--"
"Chocolate is usually the tradition," said Kirk. "And then there's the... obligatory bottle of something that'll make him smell like a Christmas tree. Or whatever you prefer," he hastily added.
"Licorice," Spock said in a voice that came out so unintentionally sultry he nearly grimaced.
Four days later, early in the morning, Spock walked through the doors of Sickbay. His arms were full of presents, which he carried with the same professional dignity as he might have a collection of valuable lab equipment.
McCoy looked up from his desk, startled. "Spock?" His eyes goggled at the chocolate, the cologne, the shirt, the music-disc...
And Spock, with all of the smugness of having both won an argument yet pleased his mate all the same, said, "Happy every day, Leonard."