Iowa (Star Trek: TOS story by Jane St. Clair)

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K/S Fanfiction
Title: Iowa
Author(s): Jane St. Clair
Date(s): 1998
Genre: slash
Fandom: Star Trek: The Original Series
External Links: Iowa via Wayback & Iowa at Archive of Our Own

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Iowa is a Kirk/Spock story by Jane St. Clair.

It was published in the print zine KaleidoScope #8.


"While Spock is at Gol, Kirk is drawn into his bondmateʼs pon farr, and even though they are worlds apart, they are one."

Author's Comments

Warning: SEX!!! OK, that was your cue to press <back> or <delete> or whatever if you're under 18. If you're offended by the idea of m/m sex, then may I suggest that you're going to have a lot of trouble coping in this big, bad world of ours, that it might be time for a change, and that slash fiction is one of the best ways in which to expand your world-view. If, on the other hand, m/m sex is simply not your thing, then I wish you luck in finding something to read which is.

This story originally appeared (in a slightly different form) in 1998 in the zine KaleidoScope 8. If you can get your hands on a copy, you really should, because it was wonderfully illustrated (not by me. By a person with artistic talent.)

For those who might be wondering: This story is free-standing, but it does exist in the same universe as my other K/S stories, especially "On the Edge of the Mountain."

Words in Vulcan and Vulcan cultural concepts are borrowed with the utmost respect from Diane Duane's magnificent novel Spock's World. [1]


Reactions and Reviews: Series

I HAVE RECCED THESE TWICE BEFORE AND I WILL KEEP RECCING THEM TILL THE END OF TIME. Stories like these make me wonder why I'm even planning the attempt; I could get lost in these and just let it be the way things went. For ever and ever, amen. [2]

Reactions and Reviews: Iowa

Ahhhh. This story is finely written. It didn't need an ending because we all know what happens. The story, however, left me so disturbed, I would have liked one. [3]
This is a story about Adm. Kirk's depressed delirium after Spock left for Gol. The writing is vivid, colorful (darkly), spare, dramatic, well suited to Kirk's state of mind. He's in a bad way—not sleeping, edgy, no friends—falling apart; and this story has him on a physical journey, driving back to Iowa, sleeping off his depression in sleazy motels, but sleep only brings visions, both beautiful and tortured.... The visions have to do with life with his bondmate on ancient Vulcan, it would seem, and are rich and atmospheric. There is one scene, Kirk aimless out in nature in Iowa, that was written particularly well, how the vision was integrated into the reality. In a couple of one-paragraph scenes in the midst of Kirk's madness, though, I couldn't really tell if it was Spock, not Kirk, we were with. And there was another one-line scene that was completely removed from being in either of their heads. The flashback to the end of the five-year mission is gorgeous (although the "had" tense took away from the drama). What happened at the very end, Kirk and Spock alone on bridge, after which Spock left for Gol. The sex is beautiful—long, drawn-out passages, full of feeling, including a convincing showing of Kirk sobbing. Deeb's gorgeous drawing here certainly enhances the story, and the story enhances the drawing. I personally could do without the Song of Solomon. It is unquestionably a beautiful piece of writing, but I've never thought it truly lends itself well to Kirk and Spock. But what the heck, why not.... A simple and hopeful ending, where we know, by Kirk's moment of clarity, that it will all work out, knowing he'll pull himself back together. [4]
OK, I’m a sucker for angst. And this one throws it at me like a cold bucket of ice water. Kirk in his early days as an Admiral. That dark time when he is so agonizingly lonely, so lost in spirit and sick at heart that nothing seems to matter. In the first few paragraphs I am hopelessly caught up in a web of distress for which there can be only one explanation. Spock is not at his side, but on Gol. Bizarre, fragmented dreams of the desert, of heat and cold and survival haunt his nights and leave him exhausted.

Now comes a poignant flashback to their parting. Unlike any I’ve read in a lot of ways, it takes place on the Enterprise bridge. There is so much regret on Kirk’s part for the decision he has so hastily made to accept a ground posting. And Spock, too, has his own demons and announces he has resigned his commission. A heartbreaking encounter. What follows is befitting the title of the zine: a kaleidoscope of images and sensations experienced by Kirk as he drives a ground car across the country and holes up in a small Iowa motel. It isn’t his hometown, as he doesn’t want to be seen by anyone who knows him. Convinced he is losing his mind and consumed by loneliness and a sense of detachment from everything he’s known, he curls inward both physically and emotionally.

The images won’t leave him alone, though, no matter where he is, and he slowly begins to sense this is more than madness; it is Spock reaching out to him through the cosmos. The story is lyrically written and unusual in many aspects – well worth a read. [5]


  1. from author's website
  2. from irisbleufic, posted May 28, 2009, accessed June19, 2013
  3. from The K/S Press #28
  4. from The K/S Press #26
  5. from Ivy in The K/S Press #126