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Leonard H. McCoy [userpic]

Shadow of a Broken Man

February 1st, 2010 (07:08 am)
lonely

current mood: Miserable without Jim
current song: Ain't no sunshine when he's gone

This is a kind of companion piece to toboldlygo1701 's Turn Left








There's this drunkard who most of the Starfleet cadets know. He shows up from time to time in one of the bars where a lot of them hang out. He looks out of place amongst all the kids wearing red uniforms. He's too old, too worn down, too miserable. Most of them leave him alone. For them he's a regular fixture, showing up regularly and picking out the same dark corner of the bar each time. It's his stool and they know to move when he shows up. Every now and then there's some moron who'll try to make a fuss out of it. It's almost always some ass of a brute who thinks he's a big shot for being in Starfleet, and can't see why he should move for some dried up, crazy old man.

He teaches them a lesson they never forget. Without exception, anyone who starts something, learn that he can put people in the hospital faster than they can blink. Most cadets will tell you how they've seen him knock out men twice his size with a single punch. Rumor has it he used to be a doctor, and knows exactly where to hit to make it count. But those are just rumors and most understand that he just wants to drink alone. So no one bothers to ask if it's true or not.

The only one who talks to him, is the bartender. But he has ulterior motives. He's not interested in the same old stories he's heard a thousand times over the years. He just tries to keep the guy there and out of trouble so he can sneak off and call the old guy's daughter. Tell her he's back and hope that she gets there soon.

They have this ritual while they wait. The bartender sneaks up a bottle of bootleg blue ale from under the counter and pours him a shot on the house. He wouldn't normally do this, but he's heard enough over the years to be able to piece together this guy's story. And it breaks his heart.

"To old friends, huh?"

"To my captain" is always the reply, as the old man's voice almost breaks.

-

He had pleaded with him not to go. To delegate the task to junior officers. A captain's place was on the bridge, taking control. Not getting his hands dirty. He didn't believe his own words. They both knew Jim had to go.

"You come back. You hear me? I don't care what it takes. Get Pike and come back."

Jim had mocked him for being worried. Laughed and called him a mother hen before flashing him that smile of his, giving him a quick kiss and heading for the transporter room. Leaving a world of unsaid things between them. Things they had never felt the need to say, because they both knew how the other one felt. A certain look, a touch. That spoke louder than any words ever could.

Still.. he would always regret that he never said it. He would always think back on all the times he had begged Jim not to make him say it and wish that just once, just one time, it had been forced out of him.


-

This time he gets up and leaves the bar while the bartender is too busy doing his job to keep an eye on him. Steals that bottle of Romulan ale with him and heads out. There's too much noise around him. He wanders the streets of San Fransisco, sipping his bottle as he picks out familiar places. A street light, a back alley, a shady bar that's been closed down for years. There isn't a street where they don't have some kind of memory together.

Finally he ends up on Academy grounds. Security spot him on the monitors and they too have his daughter's number on speed dial. She'll come and take him home quietly, without a fight, without any scene or paperwork. It's a hell of a lot easier than trying to arrest him. And none of them really want to pull out phasers and force against some pathetic, miserable drunk. He's no real threat anyway. Just a pitiful old man who looks like he's drowning in his own shadow.

-

His heart was threatening to beat out of his chest as he sprinted through the hallways of the Enterprise, literally pushing people aside to get to the transporter room first. He didn't care how obvious his personal attachment was. He didn't care what people said or thought, or who he elbowed out of the way. He just needed to reach that pad. To get to him and make sure he was okay.

But only two people had stepped off the transporter pads and neither of them was the one who mattered.

He never could remember what happened after that. His world had stopped and everything turned dark. Like the universe erased the sun. His own personal sun. When he came to in his own sickbay, he was strapped down and his knuckles were encrusted with dark green blood. He had blamed him. He still blamed him. He was supposed to have Jim's back. Not let him die. Who the fuck ever said the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one?


-

She finds him behind the Academy's prized rhododendron bushes. Staring out at the black waters in the bay as he's finishing the last of his stolen bottle.

"Y'know... we were sitting right here in our first year when we agreed that he'd be my captain and I'd be his CMO..." He mutters in a raw voice as she sits down on the grass beside him. She strokes his back carefully and takes the bottle from him. He turns to her with a frown. A frown that deepens when he sees that she looks so much older than her years. She looks tired and he knows he's a burden on her.

She could have been a doctor, like he used to be, but she had to quit medical school. She didn't have time to study that hard /and/ take care of him. So she's a nurse now, and he feels it's a waste of her talents but he can't say anything. Because she sacrificed her career for him. She's not married either. Whenever her relationships get too serious, she breaks it off. She can't bear to leave him alone. He feels this is a waste of her beauty and her love. She should be married, with a two-three brats running around. In another life, he would have loved to have been a grandfather. But he doesn't say anything because that's another thing she sacrificed for him.

Every time he sees how tired she looks, he wishes his liver would give up soon so he can lift that burden off her shoulders. God knows he's been actively trying to destroy it for decades.

-

They kicked him out of Starfleet. For attacking a senior officer. Twice. He didn't care and if he had run into him again he would have probably attacked him a third time. He'd needed someone to blame and that was such an easy target. Even if he knew it was wrong one.

Jocelyn had been surprisingly understanding and helpful. She'd gotten him a job at the local hospital. One he had lost because he didn't fucking care about being a doctor anymore. There wasn't a patient left who's life was worth saving. Not anymore. He drank so much he couldn't see right and when he didn't drink, his hands shook. They were no longer the steady expert hands of a surgeon. It had been sheer dumb luck that his license was revoked before he'd killed someone.

After his third half-hearted and failed attempt at rehab, Jocelyn had given up on him for a second time and denied him the right to see his daughter. He hadn't fought her, but instead just faded away into the shadows. He'd drifted aimlessly around, trying to drink himself to an early grave and hopefully find a fight nasty enough to finish the job a little sooner. Because he was too weak to do it himself.

When Joanna found him nearly a decade later, he'd been nothing more than a faint shadow of who he had once been. Just a cracked shell. She had thought she could save him, but over the years she'd given up. Instead she just stayed with him in his misery. Just to hold his hand as he waited for death and peace, and to fly out to San Fransisco every time he vanished and she got the call to come pick him up.


-

Someone clears their throat behind them and she turns around to nod at the security guard. “Let's go home, dad.”, she pleads but he doesn't respond to her. He's looking up at the sky with his eyes closed and this dorky half-smile. It's a dark, moonless night, yet he looks like the sun is shining down on him, warming him up and she knows where he is right now. “Bones...” she says quietly, knowing it's the only way to get him back. His smile fades as he turns and sees it's her. The imaginary sunlight vanishes and once again he's covered in shadow.

“Dammit, Jo. I miss him!" And Joanna puts her arms around her father, kissing his head as he quietly weeps. “I know, dad. I miss him too.”

Comments

Posted by: pennylenne (pennylenne)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 07:58 am (UTC)

oh. dear. god.

I'm sorry, I can't leave a legit comment right now.
I'm crying to hard.

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 11:25 am (UTC)
by your side

*hands tissue* I'm sorry.

(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 11:30 am (UTC)
by your side

*offers more tissues* It's the person who rp's Jim's fault really. He wrote his first and I got a spark of evil inspiration.

Posted by: ... (shadowakiyah)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 09:29 am (UTC)
I'd Notice

It's not often that I cry at fics, but this is one exception to that rule. This is beautifully written, and so believable, so full of emotion, sadness, and desperation, that I can't help but love it (even though i shouldn't because it's far too depressing)

Thanks for sharing.

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 11:34 am (UTC)
by your side

Thank you so so much! And Lord, I know. I'm a little too fond angsty and painful (in a good way) fics myself.

Posted by: secretsolitaire (secretsolitaire)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 01:23 pm (UTC)
sad

Heartbreaking. :-(

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 01:39 pm (UTC)
(Listen - Calm) I'm speaking calmly.

What... what the hell, Bones?!

You think I'd ever let you end up like this?! I made you a promise and I made good on it. Told you I'd come back... shit. You're not allowed to think of shit like this, okay?

Besides, even if something happened to me, I'd haunt your ass into forgetting about alcohol (or anything else you can come up with).

(OOC: ...*WIBBLE* Really, really good. The ending just about killed my inner!Jim)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 02:43 pm (UTC)
dammit jim

Oh yeah?! Well what about next time? What if you don't come back then?! Or the time after that?! Or after that? What's it Pike says? You look without leaping? One day your goddamn irresponsible ass is gonna slam into the ground and you never even stop to think about the ones you're gonna leave behind.

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 02:47 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 03:28 pm (UTC)

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 03:44 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 03:58 pm (UTC)

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 04:03 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:02 pm (UTC)

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:07 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:14 pm (UTC)

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:15 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:37 pm (UTC)

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:39 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:46 pm (UTC)

Posted by: James Tiberius Kirk (kirktastic)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:47 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:58 pm (UTC)

Posted by: liamgolucky (liamgolucky)
Posted at: February 2nd, 2010 03:55 am (UTC)

Posted by: Mijan (mijan)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 03:49 pm (UTC)
McCoy/Kirk: Don't Go Where I Can't Follo

Wouldn't be able to handle a story like this if I didn't know it was AU, and this wasn't what happened. And it would hurt even more because I know someone who is all too much like our dear McCoy, who is all too addicted to someone who is far too much like Jim Kirk, and I think the fallout would be the same if this Jim were to disappear. Hits kinda close to home. Very real, very poignant.

Posted by: AQ aka Syredronning (syredronning)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 08:49 pm (UTC)
mccoy_reboot_serious

Damn, this is a heavy read :( I've known someone who was a little like this... it's so sad and also so terrible for the people around him.

...quite out of words...

Really well-done story. Sigh.

Posted by: Leonard H. McCoy (dr_mccoy1701)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 09:10 pm (UTC)

Daaaaaaamn. I'm so sorry if I struck a little too close to home.

Posted by: Leonard H McCoy, MD (dctr_mccoy)
Posted at: February 1st, 2010 11:42 pm (UTC)
bones

Oh otherself... wow.

Just... wow.

Posted by: Lanerose (lanerose)
Posted at: February 2nd, 2010 03:43 am (UTC)
KHII ~ Roxas ~ Miss Me

Oh, ow! This is beautiful and painful, and you made me cry before I was even half through, and then it just got worse (or better, y'know, depending on how one looks at it). Seriously excellent story!

Posted by: Weeping Naiad (weepingnaiad)
Posted at: February 2nd, 2010 12:18 pm (UTC)
ST: Karl - Lost

So glad that this isn't the way it happened. Beautifully done and very powerful.

Posted by: sharpestscalpel (sharpestscalpel)
Posted at: February 8th, 2010 06:59 pm (UTC)

((OOC - SAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAADFAAAAAAAAAAACE!))

You're a goddamn morose motherfucker.

Posted by: phoxlistsu (phoxlistsu)
Posted at: February 16th, 2013 07:01 pm (UTC)

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