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Seasons Come, Seasons Go by PaBurke

Season Come, Seasons Go

By PaBurke
Summary: Life is hard. James T. Kirk loves pushing ahead of the obstacles, daring them to catch up with him. Captaining a ship will have more than it's fair share of trials. He goes to an old neighbor for help.
Cross: JLU and Star Trek: Reboot
Words Count: 1,000

"Mr. Kent?" Jim yelled across the vast field. He couldn't see the farmer anywhere, but that didn't mean anything. "Mr. Kent?" he tried again.

Still nothing.

Jim trudged up to the farmhouse nestled among the trees. The door was unlocked, but then Mr. Kent trusted people and was willing to give away food at every opportunity, known for his generosity. He preferred plants to people, but he didn't know how to be cruel. Jim called for Mr. Kent in the house, but still no answer. He wandered around the house that was home to most of his happy childhood memories. Not much had changed: the same pictures of the family long-dead were on the mantle, the same threadbare clean curtains hung in the windows and the same type of books were scattered over the kitchen table. Jim picked up the closest book to look at the title: Botany of Gilcresti. Gilcresti was one of the new planets to join Starfleet last year. Why Mr. Kent preferred the inefficient method of paper and binding to PADDs, Jim didn't understand. That was how he remembered it. Jim knew that if he walked into the living room, the computer would be hidden in the corner and covered with dust and if he walked out to the barn, the telescope would be shined and pointed at the stars.

Nothing changed on the Kent farmstead. Not even its owner.

Mr. Kent walked into his kitchen, looking exactly the same as the first time a five year old Jimmy Kirk had toddled onto his land. Now, many people would assume that they were the same age. Mr. Kent stepped forward with a gentle smile. "Jimmy, it's been a while."

Jim accepted the offered hug with good grace. "Mr. Kent, I've been away at school and on the Enterprise."

"I heard. You saved the day. I'm not surprised."

"Thank you, Mr. Kent." The quiet words meant a lot coming from this father figure. Mr. Kent had never had the heart to chase away a hurting little boy who didn't fit in and he couldn't help but to be an excellent role model.

"I didn't expect that you would ever be back to the countryside."

"I came to see you."

Mr. Kent sighed and turned toward the kitchen. "Would you like some coffee?"

"Sure." At the very least, he had to know what Jim was going to ask but hadn't kicked him off the property yet.

Mr. Kent grabbed two mugs from the cupboard and poured the coffee from the coffee pot; no replicator in this house. Mr. Kent handed Jim the Starfleet mug that he had sent the farmer as a first year student. "Go ahead," he said. "Ask what you need to ask."

"I want you to be my chief hydroponics officer."

Mr. Kent laughed. "I should have expected that."

"You love plants and the stars. You'd get to have both on the Enterprise."

"No, Jim."


"That's not why you want me aboard."

"Have you heard of the Kobiashi Maru?"

"The test that you cheated on?" Mr. Kent said disapprovingly.

"That one. The point of it –according to its designer- is to judge a leader in a no-win scenario."

"You don't believe in no-win scenarios." Mr. Kent knew him well.

"No. I don't. And if I have you aboard, I'll be able to mitigate the losses in any Kobiashi Maru situation."

"I can't be your failsafe, Jim."

"Why not?"

"Because it's time for a new crop of heroes. For you, Jim, and for your crew. You don't need me."

Jim revealed to the farmer the insecurities that he didn't dare show anyone else, but then, he always had. "We're young, Mr. Kent, but we've got the best ship. We are going to be sent to the hot spots. All I'm asking for is a year. One year, so that I can figure out what works best out there. You know that it's not the same as Starfleet Academy, no matter how hard Spock and the others make it. Think of it as an apprenticeship." He grinned -deliberately full of ego. "From one hero to the next. Then you can return here and let the new crop of heroes take over."

Mr. Kent laughed. "Jim, I have never been through the Academy."

"So? I get to pick a large portion of my crew. I pick you."

"Jim. Starfleet won't let you, not without… problems."

"Is that a 'yes'?"


"If I can get all the regulations taken care of, will you be my chief hydroponics officer?"

"You remind me of a very good friend."

"Well? Will you?"

Mr. Kent thought about it. He had the workers to take care of the farm while he was gone. He didn't have a lot of friends; he had already outlived them from what Jim understood. Jim didn't know what was holding him back.

"Yes," he said quietly. "If Starfleet allows it."

Jim jumped and cheered. "Yes!"

Mr. Kent leaned back in his chair with a quiet smile. "You're that sure that Starfleet will let you take me aboard?"

"Let me? Admiral Pike said that if I could get you said 'yes' that he would let me have a little freer rein with the rest of my choices. He said that he would take care of it all. He'll send you all the regulations that you will need to know for your position by the end of the day."

"You won a bet."

"A big bet. Thanks, Mr. Kent. I'll see you on the Enterprise in a week. We leave in thirteen days." Jim was standing and making his way to the door with as much decorum as possible. He didn't want to give the farmer a chance to change his mind. He didn't think he would, since Mr. Kent kept his word, but the man hadn't been off the farm in years. Maybe decades.

"Aye Captain," Mr. Kent said instead. "Enjoy the rest of your shore leave."

"I will."