not language but a map

writer, reader, eater of bagels. cracking inappropriate jokes to cut tension since 1989.
ask | twitter | ao3 | likes | faq | breadfish
i'm writing a book with big bang press! check us out at bigbangpress.org.

jim/bones, domesticity style:

big spoon/little spoon: Jim is what you might call an aggressive sleeper, which is to say that he flails and rolls and kicks in his sleep, which is to say that Bones has spent more than one morning yelling bitter complaints at the bathroom door while he heals the bruises Jim left in the night. When they first started sleeping together, Jim was the big spoon at his own insistence, wrapping himself around Bones before falling asleep with a possessive sort of finality that made Bones snort with laughter; he was not laughing hours later, when he awoke to the sensation of biting through his own lip because Jim had smacked the bottom of his chin in trying to roll away. There was trial and error for awhile, because Jim refused to be sedated, and Bones, for all his grumbling, refused to give up on actually sleeping with Jim; these days, Bones is the big spoon in a big way, wrapping Jim up firmly enough that he can’t lash out. They both bitch about it — Jim says Bones conducts too much heat to be human and must be concealing alien heritage, and Bones says he’s a doctor, not a straightjacket — but neither one of them actually minds. It’s more or less solved the problem. 

favorite non-sexual activity: People (well, okay, sentient being) watching. It’s a holdover from Academy; on that shuttle ride, the first time they met, Jim honestly did think Bones was going to throw up on him. In trying to avoid that outcome, he started asking Bones questions, and when it became apparent that personal questions made the guy depressed, neurotic, angry, or all three, Jim cast his net wider, pointing at random cadets and going, “So, what’s that one’s deal?” Bones’s answers turned out to be hilarious, ridiculous, and ridiculously hilarious, for all the neurotic streak didn’t prove to be shrinkable and the anger wasn’t so much a streak as a state of being. They spent most of that ride arguing about their totally unfounded opinions of people to whom they’d never spoken, snickering and emptying Bones’s flask and trying to look innocent when people cast them dirty looks, and then… well. Then they were doing the same thing at bars at the end of a long week, and over lunches in the mess, and via comms in the few classes they shared. They just sort of never stopped; it’s never stopped being fun. 

who uses all the hot water: Mr. Scott will have you know that he prides himself upon personally ensuring that there is hot water enough for all who want it aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise (though the showers do cut off after an allotted time). In fact, Mr. Scott is… unusual, to put it mildly, about all things water-related on the ship. Nobody is willing to ask him about it; Jim knows, but the only person he’s told is Bones, who narrows his eyes and mutters dark things about “risk” and “danger” and “crazy bastards trying untested mathletics on their own bodies,” whenever anybody brings it up. It is considered a Great Mystery amongst the crew, but at least the showers are hot.  

most trivial thing they fight over: Jim’s eating habits. Bones’s obsession with Jim’s eating habits. Jim’s constant insistence that Bones is needed at [the bridge/the planet they’re visiting/their bedroom/the bar]. Bones’s constant insistence that he’s a doctor and thus too busy [to be at Jim’s beck and call/to make nice with people he doesn’t know/for a quickie/for a drink… er, well, no, he actually never argues that, but it’s the principle of the thing]. The fact that Bones always says that he’s too busy to do things while he’s already doing them, so what’s the point in arguing? The fact that Jimwould only needle Bones until Bones did the thing in question if Bones resisted, so it’s actually wasting less time to just get it over with, but that doesn’t mean that he can’t register his annoyance. The fact that if Bones ever stopped registering his annoyance, Jim would fall down dead of shock. The fact that if Jim does fall down dead, it’s not going to be of shock, it’s going to be from how much goddamn crap he eats… (I think you get the idea.) 

who does most of the cleaning: They’re actually both pretty neat! Bones has been since med school; there were a couple of months after his marriage ended where he lived like a total slob out of defiant, rebellious despair, but he let that go. Jim lived like he was part monkey until the Academy, but that was because he was doing his level best to prove to himself that he didn’t give a single fuck about absolutely anything at all, not because he’s a mess by nature. Academy made being messy more work than just keeping shit tidy, and he couldn’t see the point in breaking his habits once he became captain, so he never has. 

the dvr/netflix question: If there is still Netflix in the 2200s, then serious fucking kudos to Netflix, for real. That said, I’m going to interpret this question as “Who picks the movie,” and that’d be Bones. Jim’ll watch pretty much anything, so long as it’s interesting on some level, and also, sitting next to Bones while he watches something he despises on your suggestion? Is pretty much the definition of a no-win scenario. 

who calls the super when the heat’s not working: Jim, because that’s a problem for the captain if ever I heard one — if the heat’s not working on the Enterprise, it’s fairly safe to assume that everybody’s going to freeze to death eventually. (Bones, in this situation, would be the guy standing on the bridge yelling about how they’re all going to freeze to death.) 

who steals the blankets: Jim, but only very briefly, and only in the aforementioned aggressive-sleeper sense of the word “steal.” In other words, he has a tendency to  throw them on the ground in the process of rolling around. Bones runs colder than Jim does, so he’ll use a blanket whilst awake sometimes, but Jim has never once snatched one of those away and thrown it to the floor. He probably would, if someone suggested it to him. Bones’s incredulously lifted eyebrow would absolutely be worth it. 

who remembers to buy the milk: Somebody in the mess, hopefully. 

who cooks normally: See above. 

how often do they fight: Constantly. What’s really dangerous is when they’re not fighting, because when Jim and Bones get really, properly, full on angry at each other, that’s what happens. They stop fighting — about anything. They go cold and silent and closed off from one another, and Bones steadfastly refuses to leave Sickbay while Jim haunts the bridge like a vengeful ghost, and Spock sends quietly despairing looks to Nyota until it’s all over. That happens really rarely, though, and the longest it’s ever gone is a two weeks. It was, it must be said, a bad two weeks; the crew collectively refers to it as The Dark Times, but both Jim and Bones insist that they’ve never heard of that, and obviously you must have misunderstood someone, and they don’t know what you’re talking about anyway. 

what do they do when they’re away from each other: Oh, you know. Perform surgeries. Command starships. Boldly go where no man has gone before. The usual. 

nicknames for each other: Bones calls Jim Jimmy sometimes, and kid, and “Captain” with a sarcasm that no one else ever quite brings to the title. When they’re alone, he’ll occasionally whip out “baby,” always drawled and absent, like he’s forgotten himself; Jim flushes and ducks his head every time. The only nickname Jim has for Bones is Bones, but, in fairness to Jim, he has a thousand different ways of saying it, insists no one else can call Bones by it and enforces that rule, and himself uses it to the absolute exclusivity of everything else including Bones’s actual name. Even nicknames are not something Jim Kirk is capable of doing by halves. 

who is more likely to pay for dinner: Bones. He doesn’t ever insist, but it got pretty apparent pretty quickly that he gets a quiet sort of pleasure out of treating Jim to things — he always did, even when they were just friends. Jim doesn’t really understand it, but it’s never bothered him, and he’s always figures it’s a pretty small price to pay (or not, as the case may be) to see softness around Bones’s eyes.

what would they get each other for gifts: Er, mostly booze and other edible/drinkable shit, at least during the Enterprise years. I feel like they’re the sort of couple that doesn’t really do gifts that much, preferring instead to spend money on vacations, or putting it towards an on-world property or something. Sometimes Jim gives Bones the gift of a larger-than-expected medical supply budget? And sometimes Bones gives Jim the gift of un-breaking his limbs? But neither one of them is really all that interested in stuff, especially while they’re out in the black.

who kissed who first: Jim kissed Bones first, about three weeks after they first met. He crashed into Bones in a corridor, gripped him by the shoulders, said, “Oh, thank god, it’s you, sorry about this,” and then planted one on him. Bones… really couldn’t see any reason not to go along; at that point, his opinion of Jim fell somewhere between “Crazy but hot” and “Crazy hot,” and he was a damned good kisser.  It came to light shortly afterward that Jim was attempting to escape from someone who’d misunderstood their night of passion as a lifetime commitment, which, for Jim at that point in his life, wasn’t really that surprising. Of course, the method by which this came to light was that the guy in question yanked them apart and punched Bones in the face, which caused Jim to go from zero to outraged and punch Bones’s assailant in the face, which ended up causing a deeply embarrassing three-person brawl in a Starfleet Academy hallway, of which Bones is still ashamed. In the ensuing chaos, rage, mortification, and insistence that Jim owed him enough bourbon to erase the memory forever, the kiss just sort of… didn’t come up again. It was a good kiss, though, as kisses go. 

who remembers things: Depends on what kind of things. Bones knows more about Jim’s medical history than Jim does, but Jim knows more about dealing with Bones’s assorted neuroses and fears than Bones is ever going to. If it’s a question of when or where something happened, Bones always retains more detail than Jim, usually for purposes of complaining about it; if it’s a question of which planets enforce what customs of decorum/diplomacy/etc, Jim’s always doing better than Bones. They compete, with discretion, on who’s heard and retained more ship gossip at the end of every week, but that’s just for shits and giggles.

who cusses more: Ha. Bones. 

who started the relationship: Er,Sulu, but not on purpose. It was during the dangerous weeks between the Narada and Jim’s official confirmation as captain, where the campus was heavy with death and too quiet; it seemed like everyone left had taken to drinking in the same three bars, all of them clustered together on the far edge of campus. It was like no one wanted to be close enough to see the proof of what had happened, and the bridge crew — the bridge crew to-be, then, since none of them were really certain of their futures at that point — were sticking together out of a brittle sort of solidarity. They ended up having some pretty good nights through force of will and drink, and it was on one of those nights that Jim went to the bar for a round and returned to find Bones and Sulu sitting across from each other at their booth. Scotty and Chekov were out on the dance floor, Chekov apparently teaching Scotty some sort of ridiculous line dance, and when Jim craned his head he could see Nyota and Spock standing together on the back porch, heads bent close. 

"More beer for us," he said to Sulu with a shrug, and smirked when Bones lifted eyebrow. "I meant for me and Sulu, jackass. I got your bourbon right here. Calm yourself." 

"I’m calm," Bones said, rolling his eyes and snatching the glass away in one breath. He took a sip and then let out a deep, satisfied sigh. "What d’you call this?" 

Jim grinned and set down the tray the bartender had given him. “A drinking problem?” He laughed as Bones muttered something under his breath and, warmed by the constancy of Bones’s malcontent, slung an arm across his shoulders as he sat down. “C’mon, Bonesy, don’t be like that. Don’t look a bourbon horse in the mouth, right, Sulu?” 

"Oh," Sulu said, "yeah. Sure." He’d snatched one of the beers from the tray while Jim was looking at Bones, was rolling it between his palms now, and the look his was giving Jim and Bones was… strange. "Uh, can I ask you guys a personal question?" 

"Sure," Jim said. "Advice is my middle name." 

He didn’t miss the way Sulu’s gaze flicked, almost helplessly, towards Chekov; Bones clearly didn’t either, given the soft elbow he delivered to Jim’s side as he added, “His middle name’s actually Trouble, but yeah, shoot. Worst it can do is give him the chance to talk you into a disaster, and I like you well enough to warn you if he tries that.”  

"Hey," Jim said, mildly enough. "You come to me for advice all the time." 

"How d’you think I know what you’re like?" 

"We’re listening, Sulu," Jim said, turning away from Bones with a mostly feigned finality. "We are here for you. Tell us of your woes." 

"I just, uh," Sulu said. His eyes flicked to Chekov again, and he sighed. "I was just wondering how you guys, you know, got together?" Jim went very still in his chair, felt Bones lock up next to him; Sulu must have interpreted it as taking offense, because his eyes widened, and the next words tripped out of his mouth. "Oh, god, look, it’s not — I’m not going to like, report you for fraternizing or anything. I just, you know, with the age difference thing, and the working together thing, I was just wondering if you had any… uh. Nevermind. Forget about it. "

There was a long, heavy pause, in which Jim was aware of Bones’s breathing to a degree that couldn’t be normal or healthy, not in a bar that crowded. He shouldn’t have been able to hear it at all, let alone track it, the ragged in-and-out of it, like the whole world had slowed down. Then Bones was drawing in the sort of breath that heralded speech, his back moving under Jim’s hand, and all of a sudden Jim couldn’t bear to him him deny it, to tell Sulu he’d read them wrong. 

"I just did something about it," Jim said, and felt Bones stiffen next to him all over again. "You know, like, I’d liked him forever, and I’d kissed him once but it was a joke, kind of, not exactly — it went pretty badly wrong, is the point. And that was before we really knew each other anyway, but then we got to be friends, so I just sort of sat on it for awhile." Bones isn’t breathing at all now, so Jim’s just going to keep talking. The longer he talks, the more time he has before he has to deal with this; the more he says, the more likely Bones is to take mercy on him, to not explain the truth. That’s horrible and selfish, but whatever. Jim’s horrible and selfish sometimes — it’s not like Bones doesn’t know him. "So, yeah, I sat on it, for too long, really, because it got to the point where it was… well, it was like you said about Chek— er. About whoever you’re talking about." 

"Oh, god," Sulu muttered, flushing bright red. 

Jim decided it was best for all parties if he just continued; next to him, Bones’s grip was white-knuckled on the table, and Jim found he couldn’t quite look at the guy’s face. “You know what I mean, though. You’re working together and you’re friends and it just sort of seems like… is it worth it? The risk, I mean? Only then one day I decided that I was basically being a,” Jim paused, took a swig of beer, all but spat the next words. “A coward. So, you know, I did something about it, in probably the stupidest and most roundabout way possible, because that’s how I am, you know. Impulsive. Snap-decision maker, that’s me, which is a thing certain people should always remember if and when they are considering killing me. And Bones didn’t kill me! Which was great. I want it on the record that this is a hopeful speech.” 

"Uh," Sulu said. He looked more confused than embarrassed now. "Okay?" 

"Okay!" Jim said. He jumped up and away from Bones, who was still sitting stock still and silent. "I’m going to go grab some air, you want any?" 

"Any… air?" 

"Right," Jim said, "of course you don’t, plenty right here," and he took off for the door, feeling equal parts scared and stupid and out of his mind. 

(“Damn it, Jim,” Bones said, when he caught up with Jim just outside the door, spun him round and kissed him breathless. “Of all the stupid goddamn ways to—” 

"Worked though, didn’t it?" Jim said, and Bones growled and rolled his eyes and kissed him again, so, yeah. Totally Sulu’s fault.) 

what would they do if the other one was hurt: Bones would take some deep, steadying breaths, draw on years of training, keep the panic at bay, and fix Jim himself. He’d probably yell, afterwards, about how Jim was a crazy reckless bastard, but they’d both understand that he meant I love you, stop scaring me shitless, I’m glad you’re alive. Jim, on the other hand, would overflow with unmanageable, useless energy until he started twitching, pace furiously outside of Sickbay once Nurse Chapel locked him out, and need Spock to talk him out enacting bloody revenge on the cause of Bones’s ills, whatever that cause might be. It is lucky for the universe that Jim gets hurt more than Bones does. 

who remembers anniversaries: Spock. He has discovered that humans in romantic relationships have a high propensity towards developing irritation if one party forgets dates important to the other; he has, as such, taken to informing those crew members of whom he is particularly fond when such dates are approaching. Neither Jim nor Bones particularly cares about their anniversaries, but they both find it oddly endearing that Spock does.