Everyone Passes the Test
|Title:||Everyone Passes the Test|
|Fandom:||Star Trek: The Original Series|
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It was published in the print zine Counterpoint #3.
Reactions and Reviews
I usually go into this author's stories anticipating a warm feeling piece, and this one provided that, though on a more subtle level than usual. The of this story came from its originality and solid plot. It also had a good helping of suspense -- first with Hadra, then with the conflict between Kirk and Spock, and, throughout the story, with the actual test. The test itself was a unique idea. I thought I had it all figured out early on: the children would be told to teleport themselves to the person they loved lost — and Spock would end up teleporting to Kirk. I enjoyed the surprise of finding out how wrong I was. If this story had a flaw, it may be that something needed to be said at the end about the real reason "everyone passes the test. It seemed rather cruel, and it's difficult to imagine all those parents feeling happy about the test, particularly for those who, in childhood, had been one of the last remaining to finally teleport out. Of course, Kirk and crew wouldn't have had a right to interfere with way the test was given, but it seems they at least would have expressed their concerns to those in power on the planet. As for the K/S aspects, I did enjoy the 'morning after'. The quiet, reluctant conversation felt very feel, and I enjoyed the characters' maturity in handling it in the long run, even if they disagreed. All in all, an excellent story. 
What a plot! Wonderful episode material! A really fresh premise with all the elements that define excellent Trek scripts with K/S for flavor.
The mission is to examine the progress of a long-established colony. Every 10 years this is done, but the reports are so innocuous that ‘Fleet is becoming suspicious. Enter Kirk and Spock, who discover the colonists appear to be able to get from place to place very quickly but not much public transportation is in evidence.
In the generous double bed of their elegantly appointed planetside quarters, Kirk and Spock discover something else. It is very pleasurable and immensely comforting to sleep in close contact. Of course, if you expose flammable material to flame long enough, the result is inevitable. Ministrations to tired muscles become caresses and those gentle touches lead to total loss of control. Spock contracts a form of the “you’ll regret it in the morning syndrome”, declaring he requires a commitment and assuming Kirk cannot provide this. It’s an amicable though somewhat one-sided decision and the two plow ahead with their mission, maintaining their friendship with relative ease, each trying to believe the issue is resolved.
This is such a creative idea, I hate to give it away, but I don’t see this zine listed in the Library. If you don’t want to know the ending, skip on to the next review.
Or should I say “jimp” to the next review. Spock learns from observing children in a school yard that they are able to teleport themselves from place to place simply by concentrating! Curious Vulcan that he is, Spock tries to learn the technique. After all, who concentrates better than our favorite Vulcan/Human? Unsuccessful, he is told that while some don’t learn as quickly as others, at the end of the training period there is a ceremony during which “everyone passes the test”.
Children and Vulcan are led into an octagonal building with no windows, lit only by torches and the children are told when the bell rings to “jimp” outside to their waiting parents. Spock, dressed in black, intends only to observe and has not announced his presence inside the structure.
Alongside the excited parents, Kirk watches, thinking fondly of his “silly Vulcan” and the insatiable curiosity from which he can never escape. Suddenly the gala atmosphere is shaken by the screams of a boy who jimps to his mother shouting the building is on fire! Surely not, thinks Kirk. And then he sees the smoke.
Inside, Spock has learned that not everyone does pass the test. He is trapped! The heat is becoming unbearable, the oxygen is being sucked from his lungs and through burning eyes he sees the roof is about to collapse. His mind-voice calls to Kirk, but he knows it is in vain.
Outside, Kirk is frantic, running from place to place calling for Spock, shouting that it can’t end like this, but helpless to save him. He thinks of life without Spock, and his mind turns to that one special time together -- a time so clear to him he sees the upturned ears, the soft lines of Spock’s face.....and he’s inside the building!
The next scene finds both men back on the Enterprise, with McCoy oddly accusing Kirk of trying to beam through a bulkhead into his quarters when he could have used the transporter pad. The moral of this episode, of course, is that love conquers all. And with only a single fade to black could have been filmed intact. Oh, how I wish it had been. The closing scene would be Spock admitting that he now realizes the depth of Jim’s commitment.I’ve left out a few details, but I’m still hopeful that each of you will be able to read this sometime. It’s truly one to remember. 
This story definitely passed the test for me! It contained an interesting and intriguing plot, had great characterization, was well written and contained some of the warmest most loving moments between Kirk and Spock. A slow-building tenderness permeated the story and I absolutely melted while experiencing it.
Meeting and mixing with those in control of an old earth-colonized planet, Kirk encounters a seductress of whom both he and Spock are suspicious. Shaking hands in greeting Spock more than suspects that her intentions are to distract Kirk from the business at hand, lest he learn too much. Spock's method of intervention lays the groundwork for the most interesting part of the plot when he states boldly that he and his Captain will be staying in the same room. Nothing will deter him as he explains it is part of their procedure. And Vulcans never lie. The bed is large, but somehow they find themselves innocently touching the first night. Butt to butt. About to pull away, Spock admits to himself that it is quite pleasant and denies the instinct. This is so well told, I can feel the warmth, the weight of the covers, the tantalizing touch. There is truly a mystery of another kind brewing as well. The planet's administrators are very pleasant and have provided extensive tours of what might be called tourist attractions but seem to be opposed to the Starfleet officers exploring on their own and mingling with the masses. Masses which Spock points out contain no children. Arranging to be alone, Spock stumbles upon a secret. He finds the children in a school setting, but their studies involve transporting themselves from one place to another without the aid of technology! I think the reason this made for such interesting reading is that we all wish at some time or place that we could instantly transport ourselves or an object. At least I do. I've even tried it with notable failure. The plot moved along quite nicely and there were no overt threats to their safety, so the reader could concentrate on what was happening at the end of the day, when they moved from an accidental touch to cuddling in the large bed. Ahhh, bliss! Kirk felt it and hoped Spock wouldn't move. Spock felt it and hoped Kirk wouldn't move. Very elementary but somehow very, very pleasing and satisfying to read about. Never fear, when these two bodies are pressed that closely, you know the inevitable is going to happen. It happens in such a spontaneous but unrushed way it is almost an innocent experience but extremely erotic in its simplicity. Unfortunately the next morning is a little less pleasant as Spock convinces himself Kirk could never make a commitment and states his concern about this. It is refreshing that both men are mature and understanding. Kirk doesn't agree but doesn't push it. Spock remains warm but stays on his side of the bed the next night.The climax is exciting and surprising, containing all the elements necessary to good storytelling. It is frightening, believable for science fiction and pulls all of the threads together to a most satisfactory conclusion. This story contains all the hallmarks of an author who knew her characters and Star Trek inside- out and loved them deeply.