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"Tucker Tenets"
By Eian Flannagan

Rating: PG
Disclaimer: Paramount owns the sandbox, I'm just sticking my shovel in it.
Genre: Humor, TnT Romance
Description: The fourth story in the Achieving Balance arc, part of the Happy Medium Universe. Sure might help to read the others first.

Author's Note: Italics will represent mental conversation between Mr. Tucker and his bonded mate, TíPol of Vulcan, unless they appear in the midst of a Tucker Monologue.


“Change has a considerable psychological impact on the human mind. To the fearful it is threatening because it means that things may get worse. To the hopeful it is encouraging because things may get better. To the confident it is inspiring because the challenge exists to make things better.”

--- King Whitney, Jr.


Ok, two things. One, I absolutely suck at journal writing, speaking, whatever. The ‘Dear Diary’ thing was never my strong suit. You’ll have to cut me some slack ‘cause I’m just gonna ramble. Two, any conversation you and I have right now? Not private. She’s gonna hear it all.

This lack of privacy thing actually isn’t as big a deal as I thought it was going to be.

Really.

Ashayam.

Hear that? Of course you can’t, but it’s just what I was talking about. That thought? Not mine. It belongs to that luscious, green-blooded gal I’m bonded with.

Adun.

T’Pol.

This exercise is practically schizophrenic.

She’s funny, this one. But you’d absolutely never know it just interacting with her day-to-day. She’s a bigger cut-up than me, if you want my opinion.

That is a preposterous implication. Vulcans do not “cut-up.”

And for the record, I want you to know that humans haven’t cornered the market on denial. Vulcans do that one better than us---any day of the week and twice on Sunday. Don’t let my Vulcan tell you different. That’d just be another example of her absolute mastery of the art.

*sigh*

She’s sighing at me like she doesn’t know I’m right. See, this is where I think Marcus Aurelius was really short-sighted. He said, “The universe is change; our life is what our thoughts make it.” Good ole Marcus said ‘universe,’ but I’m pretty sure he wasn’t talking about the planet Vulcan. This bond stuff puts that idea on a whole other level.

It is highly improbable to expect someone to envision a Vulcan mating bond at a time when nearly all humans thought your planet was flat.

I’m taking a deep breath here because this is one of those times when she knows that’s not what I meant but decides to ‘tweak’ me anyway.

If I’m not mistaken, he wasn’t even referring to anything beyond Earth’s atmosphere, was he?

Something else to remember, for the record. I don’t win many arguments with my Vulcan mate. It’s always a battle of wits. The problem is that I come armed with my hand phaser, and she’s totin’ Malcolm’s phase cannons. Disproportionate, you say? Yeah, well…she’s working with a higher budget than the rest of us.

Now she’s doing that ‘laughing-in-her-head’ thing. How fantastic is that? You are sooooo missing out by not hearing it.

She and Soval have been teaching me about this mating bond. They’re tellin’ me there’s a ton of…well, they call ‘em ‘tenets’… that will help us achieve a balance within it. So they’ve been droppin’ ‘em on me a little at a time. Turns out…I do okay there. Who knew?

‘Course, I have to translate ‘em into something I can easily understand, but that hasn’t been a problem yet. T’Pol’s making the whole thing pretty easy. And I know it’s only because she can now tell when I don’t ‘get it.’ So she sorta ‘dumbs it down’ for me from the jump.

Are you implying that I find you lacking in intelligence?

Not what I said. Not what I meant. I know you don’t think I’m stupid.

Another thing I’d like entered into the record books is that just because we’re in each other’s heads doesn’t mean we’ve stopped havin’ misunderstandin’s. What. Ever. You see, species aside, we’re still fundamentally different people. And we don’t just go dumpster divin’ into each other’s minds to look for the hidden treasure. There’s an innate trust there that prevents us from trespassin’ just to get to the best fishin’ hole.

Are you attempting to discover how many metaphors you can mix and make use of at one time?

You know what? I think it’s time I create some tenets of my own. I think the first one should be “Thou shalt not torture thy human husband with witty Vulcan repartee before thy human husband has opportunity to adequately arm himself.” Just so you folks know… I’m callin’ it a ‘tenet’ ‘cause I’d probably get her to actually laugh out loud if I called it a ‘commandment.’

You okay, darlin’? You’re not chokin’, are ya?

“…”

So you know how humans do their livin’, right? We get right out there, stick our thumbs in all kinds of pies, make a mess, clean it up? Shout, cry, laugh, love. We’re out there doing. Loudly. We live. Loudly. Know what I mean? Vulcans are different. To us humans, they seem to be a pretty boring species, all things considered. But that’s just it, though. We don’t consider ‘all things.’ They don’t need to splash around in everyone else’s murky waters. And they don’t need to make any noise. First, they live practically forever---

Adun.

---what I mean is---they live a really long time, so they’ll probably see everyone else’s swampland anyway, just might be on accident is all. No need to go lookin’. Second, and this is the biggie…they do all their livin’ upstairs. Again, what I mean is…the living room in your house is typically on the main level, right? Along with the kitchen, dining room, etc. So when guests come over, your main living spaces are right up front, out in the open for all to see and trample through. That’s human. A Vulcan’s living spaces, however, are all tucked away upstairs…where you have to be invited in to see.

That analogy, while convoluted, is not entirely inaccurate.

Gee, thanks.

Anyway, if you ever get invited to see those spaces? Man! Jump on that opportunity like a damn trampoline. You sure as hell won’t regret it, and the ride’s kinda the same. You’ll see in a big, fat hurry that Vulcans and humans aren’t so different. T’Pol and I? We’re not just Vulcan and human. We’re not logic and emotion. We’re not her and him. We’re just us. That’s gonna be my second tenet, I think. Sounds like a tenet, right? Yeah. “We’re just us.”

It has merit as a ‘tenet’ and is far superior to your first precept.

You just hush.

This mating bond is good for a lot of things, but the one I find most useful is the access it gives me to T’Pol’s emotions. A common misconception held by non-Vulcans is that they have none. I used to think that way, too. But I came to realize that was a shuttlepod full of crap a couple years ago. She can’t deny havin’ ‘em anymore because I feel ‘em, too.

To deny that which you are already cognizant of would be illogical, ashayam.

Lord! I’m not saying she would deny havin’ ‘em, mind you. Just that she couldn’t if she wanted to. Ya know…it’s a damn shame you folks can’t hear all the commentary from the Peanut Gallery. Sheesh!

So this access to her emotions makes judgin’ her moods a breeze. Like I can tell right now she’d be okay with me talking ‘bout Elizabeth. Some days she’s not, but today is a good day.

I don’t need to tell ya all ‘bout that whole thing. I’m sure you’ve already read ‘bout it in our After-Action Reports, the Captain’s log, the ships’ logs, Malcolm’s security logs, or Phlox’s medical logs. Hell, Porthos probably has a damn log on it.

What you don’t already know is that T’Pol and I are mostly doin’ okay. I hurt. No denyin’ that. T’Pol, too. More’n me, actually. But each day is better than the one before, and we take each day together. We have to. ‘Cause I know sure as I’m sitting in this Jeffries tube that ‘together’ is the only way we’ll get through it.

You still okay?

I am well.

Cool.

T’Pol and I are basically married. Soval and Phlox are the only ones who know. We’re not sure when we’re gonna tell the Cap’n or anyone else. See, I feel the same way as T’Pol on this. It’s no one else’s business. I want to tell my mom and dad, but that’s ‘bout it.

That big sigh you just heard was me. I’m ambivalent ‘bout tellin’ the Cap’n. Jon and I used to be real good friends. Best friends, you could say. The problem is…we’re not anymore. We’re not even really ‘friends.’ He and I have both changed a lot in the last couple years. The friendship I have with T’Pol has kinda shown me that what Jon and I had was kid stuff. And I’m not talkin’ ‘bout ‘cause T’Pol and I are married, either. We were friends long before we bonded. What we have is a maturity that I don’t think Jon and I could even conceptualize. He and I were like a cops and robbers-cowboys and Indians in the woods-behind the house-kind of thing. That’s what it was like. Hell, I think I’m closer to Malcolm than Jon nowadays. Anyway…I don’t know how that whole thing’s gonna play out.

How long have you felt this way?

Awhile. Can we talk about it later?

Of course.

We haven’t been hidin’ the fact that I spend every night in her quarters, either. It’s bound to be noticed at some point. Thing is, I’m not sure how much I care. It’s not like we’re gonna let ‘em separate us. Soval would help with that, I think. T’Pol and I probably need to talk to him ‘bout it before we go tellin’ the Starfleet-types anything. Including Jon.

Does that work for you?

It does. It is a surprisingly logical idea.

Yeah, who knew?

So understandin’ T’Pol more has helped me to better understand Vulcans, in general. I could probably hold a long conversation with one now without wantin’ to smack ‘em. Because now I get where their coming from. Mostly. Sometimes I’m still lost, but I have my very own, personal, Vulcan Rand McNally. And she’s a beaut. Latest edition and everything.

Adun.

I’ll explain later.

*sigh*

Most Vulcans think the same way, so if I try to figure out how T’Pol would think of something, I can normally figure out how the conversation should go. Not all of ‘em exist at Vulcan-normal, though. Some in a good way. Like Kov. I really liked that guy. Others don’t play with a full deck, even considering Vulcan decks are fuller than most. Like that goddamn Tolaris cretin.

Cretin? Who am I kidding? Musta got that one from T’Pol. I don’t even know that word.

Definitely schizophrenic.

Shut it, lady.

T’Pol’s mom was a genius.

Are you chokin’ again?

Where was I? Oh, yeah. T’Pol’s mom. She told me that even though Vulcans suppress their emotions, they were still sensitive to ‘em. Then she reminded T’Pol that she’d always struggled with hers. I would’ve liked knowin’ her better. She was---

Whoa! Gotta go, folks. It’s been ten damn long days, and the woman is finally hungry!

Hot damn! Feed me, Seymour! Feed me all night long!

Seymour?

Little Shop of Horrors. Never mind. Just meet me in the mess hall.

Very well.

See, lately with her it’s been all ‘Feed me, Sey-less. Hopefully, that’s history. In fact, that’s gotta be another Tucker Tenet, right there. “Feed me, Seymour! Feed me all night long!”

You have fallen into inanity, ashayam.

Yeah, well. I’m a little tired, I guess.

Are you nearly finished?

I’m thinkin’ so.

Ok. I’m just gonna say this. I’m human. I’ve got my front door wide open. Come on in, and make yourself at home. T’Pol is Vulcan. With her big ‘Keep Out’ and ‘No Trespassing’ signs. She’s gonna keep tryin’ to suppress her emotions. She pretty much has to. But ever since I got that direct communications line to her psyche, I’m okay with that.

‘Sides, I don’t want anyone else to see her ‘upstairs.’ Those living spaces are hers.

And now mine, too.

Keep Out.

Beware of Dog.

Enter At Your Own Risk.

Authorized Personnel Only.

I am sure they ‘get it,’ Adun.

Well…I’m just makin’ sure.

Schizophrenic. Positively schizophrenic.

*sigh* Shut it.

 

END

 

10/20/08


The Story continues in Cheated.

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