Animal Magnetism (Star Trek: TOS story)
|Fandom:||Star Trek: The Original Series|
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It was published in the print zine First Time #54.
"The new shipʼs cat fall in love with Spock, just as Kirk gets up the nerve to express his feelings for his first officer."
Reactions and Reviews
I thought Animal Magnetism was the funniest story in the zine and was very cleverly done. There were some very nice parts in it that were nicely worded and some of the dialogue was a riot. It was very original and very well done. It is the first story in the zine and I can see why it started out the zine. There was some added humor with a typo, that wasn't intentional. "With difficulty, Kirk controlled the simultaneous urge to blush and check his flies." I just envisioned him being sweet as sugar and attracting a whole hoard of pesky buzzing flies who were darting about his crotch. 
This charming, delightful, and amusing story revolves around the premise that Kirk is (against his better judgment) allowing the Enterprise crew to have a cat as a mascot. Kirk is not overly fond of cats, being a dog and horse lover, and especially does not like this cat, which falls madly in love with Spock and wants to monopolize his attention. Kirk’s feelings for Spock are remarkably similar to the cat’s, except he doesn’t know how to bring the subject up with Spock! At times Spock seems to be encouraging him, almost flirting, and then other times Kirk thinks Spock backs away. Things are at an impasse until a fateful meeting between Kirk and Cat....
I really liked this well written story, which is one of my very favorites in the zine, and am dying to know who wrote it! This is a great portrayal of Kirk, and I thought it was perfect, and entirely in character, that Kirk should prefer dogs to cats. I also enjoyed the portrayal of Spock. He can’t bring himself to tell Kirk directly of his feelings for him, but instead tries to let Kirk know with some subtle, and not so subtle hints. However, Kirk can’t quite believe what he thinks Spock seems to be suggesting. These scenes are very amusing, and cause Kirk great frustration before Cat (the imaginatively named mascot) comes to the rescue and forces the issue in a unique way! I also like the way the story proceeds once Spock knows Kirk’s true feelings match his. Spock does not hesitate to take the initiative to move their relationship forward, and I thought it was both clever and amusing the way Spock chooses to do this. I started to list all the different parts of this story that I particularly enjoyed (the beginning of the story where Kirk is thinking about how he fell in love with Spock, Spock’s attempts at seduction in this same scene, the discussion of what to name the cat, the description of when the cat first saw Spock, Kirk’s jealousy about Spock petting Cat, the briefing room scene and Kirk drawing himself up to his full height “not a difficult task” and the sniggering comment, the whole conversation about Spock’s desire to examine the site of Kirk’s injury, the love scene and Kirk thinking at first it was Spock yowling when it was Cat, McCoy’s comment in the corridor after Cat has been calling for Spock about Cat disturbing their chess game and then Spock’s response...) but stopped when I realized I was listing something from every page of the story!Also, I always notice how well an author handles dialogue, which can make or break a story for me. This story has some great scenes with funny dialogue, yet Kirk and Spock are always believable to me. The love scenes are very erotic, yet loving, tender, and funny too. This story is well worth your time and I highly recommend it. 
The Enterprise crew want a mascot. Kirk does not. He sets a list of conditions hoping the crew will be unable to meet them. He's out of luck. Very soon Cat arrives on board and it all seems to go well until Cat sees Spock. Instant love! Cat wants to be where Spock is. So does Kirk (without the cat). Things come to a head when Kirk sits on Cat and Spock decides to check for injuries personally. Yummy passionate sex as they declare their love for each other. But...Cat hasn't finished yet. A delightful and entertaining First Time story. 
I have no idea why I didn’t guess this was written by a British author—“Everything ship shape and Bristol fashion” should have clued me in—but I didn’t. Don’t get me wrong. I generally like it when a Briticism creeps into a story; K/S is for everyone, after all, but I did clunk myself on the side of the head and shout, “Of course,” when I found out the author’s name. I have been a fan since reading her delightful story “Moving On” in Singing in the Wilderness. This one is even better.
Kirk must finally give in to the crew’s desire for a mascot, and the tale of how Crewman Cat comes to be a part of the Enterprise company and falls in love with our valiant first officer is just one comic, sweet, frolicking good scene after another. When I first began reading this story, I thought, Oh, no, a rip-off of Emily Adams’ excellent Pan stories. I couldn’t have been more wrong...and delighted to be proved so. The only things Pan and Crewman Cat have in common are their, well...catness, and their attraction to Spock. Both authors had/have obviously shared their lives with one of these amazing creatures, and it takes very little effort to fall in love with Spock. (I do it on a daily basis.)As this story has been reviewed extensively, I’m not going to say any more about the plot. What I would like to mention is that the apparent ease with which this was written must be an illusion. This is just so smoothly, so effortlessly done that it blew me away. (And if this did come as easily as it appeared, please don’t tell me, Anne. It would make me want to unplug my computer, and get on with my non K/S life.) 
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