Omega and Alpha
You may be looking for Omega/Alpha, a Star Trek: TOS story by Lynn Syck & Laurel Ridener.
|Title:||Omega and Alpha|
|Fandom:||Star Trek: The Original Series|
|External Links:||online here|
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It was published in the print zine T'hy'la #26.
"Still mourning the death of Gary Mitchell, Kirk must learn to deal with Spock as his new first officer, while continuing on a personal quest at the same time."
Reactions and Reviews
I am not familiar with this author, but I will certainly be on the lookout for her? his? name from here on out. I am assuming this is a net author, and definitely not a first offering. The writing is exceptionally smooth, the pacing excellent, and the plot is inventive.
This story takes place at the very beginning of the five-year mission. It is just after Where No Man Has Gone Before. Gary is dead, and the “logical” choice to replace him as first officer is a Vulcan who has risen through the ranks named Spock. Kirk is very young, very driven and determined to form a relationship with his new first. Spock has served on the ship for nearly twelve years, but in all that time he hasn’t learned how to understand what drives humans. I love being in at the beginning and seeing the start of their legendary friendship. The slow deliberate way they become first friends and then lovers feels absolutely real. There were a couple of aspects of the story that I particularly liked. First of all the characterizations were right on target. These are the people we saw in the episodes. Take for example this small scene when McCoy and Spock meet for the first time: “Spock turned, and Kirk hoped this went well. ‘Mr. Spock, I don’t believe you’ve met our new Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Leonard McCoy, First Officer Spock.’ McCoy thrust out his hand. ‘Nice to meet you.’ Spock put his hands behind his back. ‘I have reviewed your record, Doctor. Will you be as insubordinate here as you were on Starbase 2?’ ‘I can only hope so.’ McCoy grinned and put his hand down. Kirk had the feeling that this was the first of many altercations between these two.” Jim, you don’t know the half of it. I like seeing Kirk’s command style, how he leads and yet allows Spock to come to his own conclusions about McCoy which just so happen to be the ones Kirk wants him to come to. Plus Kirk and Gary were close friends but not lovers, and Komack is actually a nice guy! Of course, Amok Time has not happened yet. Certainly different interpretations than we are used to seeing. The action/adventure plot is very well done, and I enjoyed the sense of anticipation as the author gave us the answers to Kirk’s search for a needle in a haystack just a bit at a time. By the time the mystery was revealed, I was just as curious as Spock was. Iknowthisisabitofanigglebuttheuseofthe phrase “away team” instead of “landing party” momentarily booted me out of the story since “away team” is a Next Generation term. But only momentarily. This type of plot where we see their relationship develop has to be handled slowly and patiently otherwise it’s hard to see the interaction that made first friends then lovers out of these two disparate souls. Actually the key is that they are not so different after all. K’Chaps does it perfectly.A lovely story, and one I will read again. 
This is a unique and expertly written story and it touched my senses in all the right places. I don't think I've ever read anything with this theme before and I went over it many times to call forth its riches and the genius of an author I admire.
It takes place right after the first episode of TOS, after Gary has died. Told from the pov of our young but confident captain. Of course he is grieving yet is still strong and sensitive enough to put it aside, to begin recognizing the merits of his crew, particularly of his first officer, Mr. Spock. This is what thrilled me, that they hit it off right away, that Kirk realized that Spock was what he wanted, initially as a true friend and gifted colleague, then later (but not too much later) as a committed lover. When I found that Spock reciprecated those feelings, my eyes went wide and I was in for the long haul.
Naturally I'm focusing first on the love relationship waiting-to-happen; it's my romantic senses that sit up and take notice first in any story. Yet I was quickly and thoroughly engaged by the clever, exciting plot.
Kirk is on a personal mission, a sort of 'holy grail' search for his presumed dead father. Kirk has dreamed of finding his dad for a long time and Gary was the only person who'd known about it. But Gary had discouraged his friend, telling him it was pointless. Kirk, as is his wont, did not listen, for he had amassed a mountain of material he considers evidence, which he is now determined to sort and index if he can procure a private office in which to spread out and work.
He trusts Spock enough to turn to him for help. And Spock, loyal from day one to his alluring captain, stays by his side, aids him in Kirk's yearning hope and comforts him (in his own inimitable way.). I looked on our Vulcan in his silent childlike devotion and it took my breath away how adorable he was. I smiled as he carried out his captain's wishes, sometimes even before those wishes were expressed. Plus I was very happy that Spock didn't denigrate Kirk's ideas, knowing and learning along the way how intelligent Kirk really was. Spock was reading Kirk right off the bat, it seemed to me, and I loved it. It had me smiling, anyway, although Kirk was still missing Gary in the back of his mind. Then events became rough and dangerous for both the officers.
The two men zero in on a sector of space that seems promising. Spock turns up information on it: there is a colony on one of the habitable planets that may warrant looking into. It produces locadium, a sought-after metal, but the mines are operated by slavers of unknown origin. Kirk sticks to it, researching by himself for a short time.
Events are shaken up and lightened a bit as Kirk and Spock deal with their CMO, Dr. McCoy. I liked this part a lot, it shows the budding abrasive relationship between the doctor and the Vulcan. Meanwhile Kirk is adjusting to his new crew, his own role as commander amid his grief and anguish. Kirk's discouragement in the middle of one night brings him a gift: Spock enters, on the pretext of discussing crew evaluations. They sit together, the atmosphere friendly but professional. Of course, I was hoping for some action even this early in the game, but what I got was sweet, believable and warm. I love to think of them like this, learning each other, even going for coffee together, Kirk teasing and Spock reacting, not too stoically, with his own 'joke'. Then chess through the night. This section of the story highlighted Kirk's strengths, his pride in his crew, loyalty to valued crewmembers too, and the scenes made me happy in many ways.
Later came the dangerous part, but it was wonderful too, especially when Kirk and Spock are in their commandeered Vulcan shuttle on their way to unofficially case that slaver colony. This while the Enterprise is at Starbase 13 undergoing tests. For Kirk's hope is still burning: his father may have been taken prisoner long ago for slave labor in the mines. Certainly it is an illogical hope but Spock doesn't at any time utter those words. He is with his captain all the way.
In the end it is Kirk who unlocks the fact that it's the Klingons who are operating the mines, and Spock is impressed. (I loved the cute way Spock obliquely asks to see Kirk's scar, as Kirk was discovering that this stunning Vulcan was truly his friend. Spock's wish wasn't granted--then!)
Events take off from there and the reader gets many delightful moments, one in which Kirk assures himself that Spock likes him. You can just see the smugness on that beautiful face! This author give us such a perfect thread of their growing relationship, weaving it into the edge-of-the-seat action like the artist she is. I was excited by it and compelled to go on reading, though it really was the middle of my night. My rewards were more than impressive. I was given another intimate late-night scene with our guys. Having breakfast in Kirk's cabin, they become closer and closer. The atmosphere is romantic, flirty, and ratchets up the sexual tension between the two men.
This tension carries us through the upcoming perilous action. The two officers' closeness, both personally and professionally, during their trip in the Vulcan shuttle had me holding my breath for romance; Kirk's brave derring- do as he beams down to become part of the slaves at the mines—the ugliness and pain of what he goes through and ultimately discovers. All of it had me holding my breath. And the adventures are much more sinister and hateful than my words can convey. Yet all of it is written so elegantly, realistically and it made story one of my favorites of the zine.
In the end my longing for romance was supremely satisfied by Jim and Spock's togetherness back on the ship. Kirk is taught, with tender touches and truth, the meaning of t'hy'la. Their loving is long and delicious, with Kirk wishing to "keep Spock on him like a blanket". Wow! Satisfied? I guess I was! I mean they were. I took away with me the souvenir of this consummate consummation, just as Kirk had brought back a sword as a souvenir from that horrible planet. And I will eternally wonder if that sword took its place on the wall of Kirk's t'hy'la's cabin and that we were seeing it there all through the series.You've got to read this story to get the full flavor. For one reason if not those I've sketched, then for the portrayal of a Kirk who struggles for humanity and his love of right over wrong. With his soul-mate at his side. Highly recommended! 
I really like this rendition of how Kirk and Spock came to love each other. It’s the same and yet different – and I realize that makes no sense. But it is different in that it isn’t so much sexual tension that builds as the feelings between them grow – it’s more analytical. You’d think it might be less enjoyable that way, but it isn’t the case at all. It’s very interesting and quite believable to read how Kirk first comes to respect Spock as an officer. It is a slow-growing dependency and trust. Spock assists Kirk with a special project, but only when Kirk gives assent to do so. Spock is never pushy and Kirk is very independent and something of a loner. We also see the seeds of the adversarial relationship between Spock and Bones. Besides those attributes, there is a lot of action and introspection, both things I enjoy in a story. The author tells her story well and takes us on a mission befitting the Enterprise and her daring Captain. A good read! 
Have you ever started a story and known from the very beginning that you were really going to like it? Well, that was my experience with this story. The writing is very...not simple or stark; both those words don't do it justice. Clean, maybe. No overuse of adjectives or unnecessary dialogue, just a clean, smart, totally engrossing story. Can you tell that I enjoyed it very much?
It begins just after the events of "Where No Man Has Gone Before." Gary Mitchell is dead and Kirk has just named Mr. Spock as his new first officer. He doesn't know the Vulcan very well, but he does know he's efficient and devoted to duty. Kirk figures he's the best man for the job. And he is, as Kirk learns as the months pass. They're still not friends, but Kirk's respect for Spock has grown. A foundation is slowly being built. It's such a departure from how so many stories are written where Kirk and Spock have a strong and immediate attraction to each other, whether sexual or not, but this works, too. And it keeps you interested, drawn in in expectation of what's to come. And what comes first is friendship, as both learn much from each other. I especially liked that much of that learning was done through "official" channels, such as Kirk ordering Spock to spend time in sickbay helping McCoy so Spock can learn how illness and injury affect humans. Spock, in turn, shows more of himself in the way he does his job. He's always there for Kirk. When it's discovered that there was more damage done to the Enterprise during their mission at the galaxy's edge than originally thought, the two men, along with the rest of the crew, are forced to stay at a Starbase for two weeks while the ship is being repaired. Sharing the same room only helps in bringing the two men closer. It also gives more time for Kirk's project, something personal that he's been working on for years. Suddenly, that work takes center stage as Kirk receives information that gives him hope that his father, missing since Kirk was at the Academy, might still be alive. With Admiral Komack's help, and Spock's insistence on going along, Kirk leaves the base on "vacation," intent on finding, if not his father, than at least what might have happened to him.Much of the rest of the story deals with how Kirk handles the ordeal and how he manages to bring his quest to its conclusion. I won't go into details; suffice to say that, like the rest of the story, it's an engrossing tale. The last pages, that finally bring the two men completely together, are a perfect ending. 
I‘m really ashamed of myself after reading Ivy‘s roundtable last month as I‘m as guilty as everyone else who hasn‘t sent in a LOC for a while... quite a while. So I pulled out a zine, T‘hy‘la 26, opened it up and started to read the first story. It happened to be Omega And Alpha by K‘Chaps and it just bowled me over. What a fabulous story! I happen to like when they first meet on the Enterprise stories and this one just reinforced my preference. The characterizations of Kirk, Spock and McCoy are so perfect in my opinion that it‘s almost spooky... Kirk in particular. Dialogue is right on and the plot, minus the K/S unfortunately, could have been an episode. I‘m not a fan of Gary Mitchell so I was kind of frowning when Kirk would think about what a great friend and first officer he had been, but then after Spock had been first officer for a while and Kirk had met with his department heads, I loved how this author just casually slipped it in that apparently Gary hadn‘t been as good a first as Kirk had once thought. I can‘t say enough about this wonderful story. I wish I could write more in depth reviews because this story deserves it I recommend this one highly. If you haven‘t read it already be prepared for a treat. I‘m awaiting your next one, K‘Chaps. 
I was compelled to experience this story for myself after reading Chris Hornby’s review in the last K/S Press, and I want to add my words of praise. Chris wonders about the deliberate reversal of Omega and Alpha in the title, but I believe in this case it is fitting. Kirk is experiencing the stages of grief following the death of Gary Mitchell, the ending of a lengthy and special friendship. Into this void cautiously steps his newly-appointed First Officer, Spock. Definitely the beginning of what will be the most important relationship either will ever know.
This is an exceptionally well-told story and I very much enjoyed the simplicity of it and the sense that I was there with Kirk and Spock every step of the way. The characters remained very true to themselves, at least as I see them, when either could have been painted with too emotional a brush. It seemed to be a very plausible way for them to begin their new working relationship as well as cautiously seeking out each other on a more personal level.K’Chaps is an author that I wasn’t very familiar with, but whose works I will now watch for. 
I first read this story in T'hy'la 26, and was well pleased to see it again as a recent addition to the Archive. K'Chaps is an interesting author--there are several stories posted--but this story is in a class of its own. A long, satisfying tale, we see a wonderfully complex portrayal of Jim Kirk, who is settling into his captaincy and coming to terms with the loss of his friend, Gary. I like the fact that, here, the latter is not vilified, and really was Kirk's friend. But this doesn't stop him finding out more about him in the weeks that follow.
There is a pleasing sense of reality about life aboard the Enterprise in the story, especially in the way that there are several plot strands being skilfully developed side by side. From Kirk's point of view, we see him trying to get to know and work with Spock, their growing rapport, and his off duty search for what happened to his father, years before. All this, as he mourns Mitchell. Spock becomes involved as well, supporting Jim totally, as they gradually realise the extent of what the Klingons could be planning. Of course, this does not happen in a vacuum, and we see some of the qualities that make Kirk an excellent starship captain. He can make the difficult decisions, think of creative solutions. As an example, he sends Spock to sickbay, to work shifts there: McCoy's methods need to be appreciated, and Spock learns much. The Doctor's characterisation is spot on, as well. Not a caricature. And this is not always easy in a story where he's not the focus, I'd think.K'Chaps is a thoughtful writer and this story works its way to a climax cleverly, the strands coming together and the attraction between Kirk and Spock almost catching them unaware. I say 'almost' because we are waiting for it, and have seen the signs.. I am not doing Omega and Alpha justice. It needs to be read and reread, I've found. And I haven't quite understood the reasons for the deliberate reversing of the usual word order in the title. Still thinking about that, but this is one of the joys of this gratifying story.