The console flashed a pretty dance of red and gold lights as Spock's
long fingers played quickly about the buttons before him. The
beauty of the display was lost on the Vulcan, his face impassive, absorbed
in his work. It was not his duty period so the work was more of a
personal nature. Never-the-less his eyebrows arched with slight annoyance
as a couple of crew members hurried past chattering excitedly, odd bits
of red tinsel decorating their Star Fleet uniforms.
Spock knew that most members of the Human contingent of the crew were
presently in the midst of a Religious Celebration but he saw no reason why
that should mean a slackening of Star Fleet standards on the bridge. He
turned to Chekov and Uhuru with his best Vulcan stone face but the two
seemed oblivious to the First Officer's look of disapproval. They
entered the turbo lift as Spock prepared a sharp reprimand but the
words never left his lips. The turbo lift doors closed
behind the cheerful pair and Spock simply shrugged and turned back to his work
at the console.
A few moment later there came a not totally unexpected call from the
Officers Rec. Room on deck 4. Of course, it was the ship's doctor.
"First Officer Spock to Rec. Room 4 immediately....Intruder Alert!"
Spock sighed, resigned to yet another, totally unnecessary, interruption
to his work.
"What seems to be the problem Doctor?"
"Spock, get yourself down here, we have an intruder in the Officer's
Rec. Room who is asking for you and appears to have
something to give you!" The Doctor's
voice was a mixture of antagonism and good natured banter that Spock
"Really, an Intruder, Doctor?"
"Yes Spock! Good Heavens, man, you had better get down here pronto!"
"We have had no alerts here on the bridge, Doctor, and the sensors
fail to show an intruder in the location you specify."
"Never-the-less, Spock, it...he is here and asking for you."
There was the muffled sound of tittering in the background which was
quickly shushed by the Doctor.
Spock sighed again and put down his computer stilus. "Very well, Doctor.
I'm on my way. Spock out."
Spock tidied up his computer disks, stood up and walked
quietly to the turbo lift. He turned on entering and caught Ensign
Pulver, at the Engineering console, trying to hide a wide grin.
Spock's left eyebrow arched
quissically. The lift doors closed and the Ensign's
amused face was gone.
On deck 4, Spock found the corridors lit with strings of
multi coloured lights
and festooned with glittering tinsel. Conifer branches hung with baubles were
strung along the ship's bulkheads
and members of the crew wandered about in strange costumes,
carrying brightly wraped parcels.
Most female crew were wearing a great deal of gaudy costume jewelry that sparkled
in the colourful lighting. Those that noticed him showed great surprise but
greeted him cheerfully with
"Merry Christmas, Mr. Spock" as he passed.
He merely inclined his head in reply and continued quickly on his way
to the Rec Room.
The Rec. Room doors swooshed open before him as he entered.
"MERRY CHRISTMAS, MR SPOCK!" The room was full of extremely cheerful crew
members whose shouted greeting made Spock wince despite himself.
The Doctor emerged from the group and tried to usher Spock further in to
the room. But Spock resisted and stood his ground.
"Very well, Doctor, I am here. I have left very important work to come
so I hope you have good reason to summon me.
Now where is this Intruder you spoke of?"
Zulu and three other crewmen moved in behind Spock forcing him further
into the room or risk having them pressing up against his back.
"This way Spock, I'll show you."
Doctor McCoy could barely contain his glee at having
enticed Spock away from the Bridge. "He's been asking for you. Says
you have been an especially good boy this year...(a wave of giggles
passed through the assembled crew who tried, unsuccessfully to hide
their mirth behind their hands)....and he has something very nice
"Really Doctor, and what exactly does this creature expect to gain from
annoying his Superior Officer with this foolish masquerade?" Some of the
smiles quickly vanished from certain junior crew members at this point.
The Doctor grinned into Spock's face, still unconcerned with the First
Officer's uncompromising attitude. "Come on Spock, join in the spirit
of it all. It won't hurt too much, I promise."
"Doctor, I think there is more than enough 'Spirit' at work in this
Rec. Room as it is and I really have far more important duties to
attend to than providing a dupe for your childish jokes."
McCoy looked a little annoyed now.
"Just come and look for yourself, Spock!"
"Very well, Doctor. Take me to this Intruder, if you must."
Spock followed McCoy into the center of the room.
A loud and cheerful "HO HO HO" rose from somewhere in front
of them. The crowd parted and there, sitting on a tinsel bedecked
mockup of the Captain's Chair was the oddest looking Human Spock
had ever encountered
in all his years with Star Fleet and after meeting many, very strange Humans in
deed. He was oddly rotund, as if nature had slapped the excess weight
on to his body in great, soft slabs. His extremely long beard was startlingly
white, as were the wisps of hair that peeked out from under his bright
red cap. In fact the man (Spock presumed no human female could be this
unattractive!) wore a whole suit of thick, red fur trimmed with white,
despite the excessively hot atmosphere of the Rec. Room.
His face was rich, cherry red
in colour. Beads of red perspiration trickled down his face, revealing
equally red skin underneath. On his lap he held a strange looking toy
animal. Spock's wide reading habits meant that despite never having seen
one before, he recognised it as a teddy bear. This one was quite unique in that
the ears on top of its head were extremely long and pointed.
All around him peels of good natured laughter erupted as Spock at last
stood face to face with the 'Intruder' of the U.S.S. Enterprise.
The red faced man in the red suit lifted the teddy bear up for Spock to take.
"Her ye are laddy. Ye been a good wee lad and ye deserve a wee gifty."
The odd Red Man looked close to melt down as the thick Scottish accent
emitted, some what slurred, from behind the long, white beard.
Spock stood perfectly still, staring down at this strange
apparition and the toy that was still held up for him.
"Come on Lad, take ye teddy and I hop' ye'll be ver' happy together."
Still Spock stood very still and stared. He made no move to take the toy animal.
The laughter around him was
almost deafening but slowly, bit by bit, it began to subside until
everyone was quiet and watching Spock with some apprehension.
McCoy stepped forward and, laughing, said "Come on Spock. Loosen
up that stiff shirt of yours a bit.
it's just a little fun. Even you know what fun is, don't you?"
Spock seemed to come out of his trance. He turned on the Doctor and McCoy
stepped backwards quickly, almost stumbling. The look on Spock's face
was one of rigidly controlled displeasure.
McCoy might have called it fury, except that Vulcans were not supposed
to have such emotions. Spock's voice was razer sharp and
cold as the Anterian Steppes.
"I realise that Humans have scant regard for customs and beliefs that are
not their own, but I didn't think even you, Doctor, would sink to openly
ridiculing another culture in such a way as you have exhibited here!"
McCoy stammered in surprise. "Ridiculing, Spock? I don't know what you
mean!" He waved his hand towards the now visibly deconstructing Man In
Red and the teddy bear.
"It's just a bit of harmless fun. It took us hours to get those
ears just right!"
Spock drew himself up to his full height and glowered around at the
now anxious looking crew. Then he turned his full glare on to the wilting McCoy.
"You quite obviously have been researching Vulcan mythology, Doctor, and know quite
well that this pitiful effigy is meant to represent
Great Grandfather Santek."
"Great Grandfather Santek?" Echoed a bewildered McCoy.
"Giver of tokens to juveniles and harbinger of the brief Vulcan winter.
But in your haste to bring discomfort to me and merriment to yourselves
you have ridiculed this ancient, much admired figure of peace and wisdom.
One of the few childhood icons of Vulcan Mythology!"
"But, Spock....(the Doctor was now floundering under the Vulcan's attack)..we
never realised!.....we never thought!.....Spock!" McCoy appealed to the Vulcan.
Spock brushed the blurted apology aside with a dismissive
wave of his hand and continued.
"Look at this absurd costume!" He gestured with impatience at the sinking figure
in the Chair. Further more no Vulcan
would ever allow themselves to get into such a state of physical neglect.
This is a
hideous travesty and a disgrace to every Vulcan's
cherished childhood memories."
Spock turned on his heel and marched through the crowd which quickly parted
to let him through.
"Wait! Spock!" Called the now distraut McCoy but Spock's back only
stiffened as he strode out of the Rec Room doors.
As the doors closed behind him, leaving a sea of stunned
faces within, Spock walked straight in to a surprised Captain Kirk.
"Spock! I never expected to find you down here. Not today of all days."
Kirk studied the unusual expression on his First Officer's face. "You do
seem uncommonly pleased with yourself, Spock. What have you been up to?"
"Just spreading a little seasonal humbug, Captain." Spock replied
"I believe that is the term, Captain."
Kirk shrugged and laughed. "Good to see you are taking an interest in
the crews activities, Spock."
"It was a uncommon pleasure, Captain." There was an mischievous
gleam in Spock's eye.
"Well.....carry on then, Spock."
"Thank you, Captain. I intend to do just that."
Spock turned around again and walked back into the Rec Room with a
curious Kirk following close behind.
The First Officer strode back through the startled crowd, straight up to the 'Man
in Red' being helped to disrobe of his heavy furs by McCoy. The revealed
Scotty shrank back in to the mock Captain's chair as the Vulcan bore down on him but Spock merely reached out and picked up the teddy bear,
saying in a good imitation of the Chief Engineer's Scottish accent
"But then, I have been a good, wee lad so I
will take my token thank you, Santek."
Now, with the toy tucked firmly under his arm,
he marched back to the doors while the crew
gaped in mounting astonishment.
Spock paused at the doors. Turned and then executed
a grand bow to the entire room. "Merry Christmas."
He said warmly.
After a stunned moment the whole room erupted in cheers, laughter and
loud hand clapping.
McCoy looked suitably miffed and relieved, simultaneously.
"Spock! Why you pointy eared......!" But he was laughing too much to finish the insult.