Storm (Star Trek: TOS story by Anna S. Greener)
|Author(s):||Anna S. Greener|
|Fandom:||Star Trek: The Original Series|
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It was published in the print zine Legacy #4.
"While on shore leave, Kirk is attacked and injected with a biological agent known as a Shaper, a virus programmed to infiltrate the host's DNA."
Reactions and Reviews
Wow! This story just blew me away! It’s hard to believe that we could still be breaking new imaginative ground more than thirty years after the inception of K/S. On second thought, having been privileged to know so many brilliant, creative women in this fandom I shouldn’t be at all surprised.
At more than seventy pages, “Storm” relates a fascinating look backward at Kirk’s early years. Anna has created a uniquely new background for our captain, one unlike any you’ve read before. Spock, too, presents us with a new interpretation of his youth on Vulcan. The story bounces back and forth, from past to present. It is intricately plotted, laid out with meticulous care to present a mystery that I guarantee you will not guess ahead of time. There were so many intriguing touches from “Gray Gran” to the “obpod,” from the intimacy of the first person pov to the absolutely dead-on characterization of Kirk. (I usually don’t see Spock with the same gender identity as Anna does here, but the portrayal was more than convincing enough to carry me through the story.)This piece is beautifully written, with a marvelously easy flow, and clean, clean, clean with nary a typo or flaw in sight. If you have only bought one or two volumes of Legacy, you will be well served to treat yourself to this one. I haven’t as yet read the other stories in Volume 4, but this one alone is worth the price. 
There have been so many positive reviews of ―Storm‖, yet I‘d somehow put off reading it for no particular reason. What a wonderful story! Completely imaginative and fresh in concept, yet just as familiar and comfortable in the love that‘s portrayed between Kirk and Spock. I have no idea what I expected, but whatever it might have been, it was parsecs from the creative plotline devised by Ms. Greener.
Because many may not have read this story yet, I hesitate to say too much about the crux of the plot – it is so different that it would be almost unforgivable to reveal it here, so I will try to concentrate on how the characters handled the predicament. This is a very strong Kirk, with a background that is different from what we may have imagined, and yet extremely believable. The character of his great-grandmother is one of the most realistic and well defined Kirk relatives I‘ve ever read. I feel I know her very well, and in spite of her shortcomings, I admire her strength, her perseverance and her devotion to her grandson. She is such a complicated individual, as are we all.
I love the way we learn of Kirk‘s upbringing through his dreams. I am filled with pride at the way he handles the difficult situation that has been forced upon him – this is the Kirk that could take on the Galaxy and be victorious. Spock is equally well written, with amazing insight into all the complexities of his life, his beliefs and his inner personality.
This is truly a memorable story and I could easily flip back to the beginning and read it again right this moment. In fact I just may do that, because I‘m sure I‘ve missed a great deal. I wish to savor every detail, every nuance of feeling, every memory, and I especially wish to be convinced once again that no matter what the obstacles, Kirk and Spock are destined to be together always and forever.Beautiful! 
Anna S. Greener seems to be an author who has passed me by, or perhaps I have read her stories before and enjoyed them without taking particular note of who wrote them, or most likely, I simply forgot, due to my sporadic reading of zines. Having just read "Storm" in Legacy #4 however, I am now primed to read more of this talented and prolific (thanks, Zine Database!) writer. "Storm" drew me in immediately from the image of a child on a swing where we are left to scrounge for clues—who is this? How is it going to connect to Kirk and Spock? Very gradually, just as someone coming out of a deep sleep, we realize who it is, and we are instantly drawn into Kirk's inner world. I don't think I have ever had such a good understanding of what might be going through the captain's mind at all times. Here we are taken through the good, the not so good, the insecurities, the wonder, the drive to be the best, to care for others, to love. The first person, present tense takes some getting used to, but it aids in cocooning the reader into the Kirkness that this prose does so well. We get observations and from his point of view that are exceedingly detailed and intimate, thoughts and self realizations that unfold slowly and delicately, and even a few truisms that really hit home for me. In canon, real and fandom, we know very little about Kirk in his younger years. Fans have agreed to make Riverside, Iowa his home, but there are a few versions of family that are out there. This one is different from most, yet entirely believable, and critical to providing the necessary background into Kirk's mindset. As the plot unfolded I found myself doubting things would end well, since we all know what happened at Gol, but the ending was pleasantly satisfying, thank goodness! A fine read, indeed. 
There's been very few K/S stories that have used the premise that's used here; I've enjoyed them all and this one is no exception.
How much of love is of the mind and how much of the body? That's the question that Kirk will ultimately face after he wakes up in sickbay and finds himself subtly altered. So subtly, that he isn't even sure what has been changed. All he knows is that while on leave he was injected with some sort of biological agent, a "shaper," as it is called. Unfortunately, McCoy will not tell him what the change is, though both he and Spock know. The doctor thinks it best that he find out on his own. The rest of the story is his attempts at not only discovering what has been done to him, but then learning to live with the consequences. It's written in the first person, something I'm usually not fond of in a story. But here, it works. It works very well. The reader is allowed to travel Kirk's path with him, as he uses the memories of his past (recollected through dreams,) and his own intelligence to figure out what or who he is now. What and who he is now is homosexual. Muddying the waters further is that he was raised primarily by a grandmother who was an "Anachronist," someone who mistrusted and hated "anyone who didn't fit their particular definition of a human being." That Kirk no longer fits that description is not lost on him. Finding out that Spock is a "samer," as he is now, only adds another complication, especially after they have sex. And then Spock discovers that T'Pau is behind the attack on Kirk, that it was done in order for her to regain her control over Spock and to revenge herself against Kirk, who she sees as having outwitted her during Spock's pon farr. But even given all this, Kirk's and Spock's love for each other, no matter its expression, is more than enough to hold them together. For Kirk does love Spock; he always has. His change has merely allowed them to take it that one last step.It's a beautiful story and I can't recommend it highly enough. 
It’s amazing that with all the K/S literature devoted to explaining how Kirk and Spock first happened to become lovers, one comes along that is totally unique and unexpected. The concept envisioned by Ms. Greener is one I would never have thought of in a million years, but in a very unusual way, it worked.
Commencing the story with a flashback to Kirk’s childhood through a sickbay dream is a nice touch. I could imagine the young future starship captain’s conversations with his great-grandmother as if I’d been sitting alongside them on the porch of the old farmhouse. But this wasn’t just a feature tacked-on, it played into the plot of the story very well. “Gray Gram” provided this bit of philosophy: withstanding the storms life brings our way makes us stronger. Certainly this is a trait we observe in Kirk time after time.Something has happened to Kirk, something that caused him to be confined to sickbay and that neither McCoy nor Spock will fully explain to him. All he knows is that he was drugged in an alley and woke up back on the Enterprise. Imagine how frustrating it is for the Captain that neither of his friends will tell him what he was injected with or what the effects may be. The only answer he can get is that it’s in his best interest that he unravel the mystery for himself. This ploy might be used in a light-hearted way, but there is nothing facetious about its use in this imaginative story. I won’t give it away here, but it is well worth your time to discover for yourself by reading “Storm”. The generously lengthy story is well structured, very entertaining with a smattering of suspense, and we are given a great deal of insight into what James T. Kirk is made of. The ending may surprise, but it will definitely not disappoint! 
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