This moment made Salok's refusal to retire, even at his advanced age, completely worth it.
He opened the door, watching the two dark heads turn simultaneously in his direction, watching his approach through the window. The younger set of eyes turned immediately distrustful, the older... what? Not actual relief?
"Saavik," he intoned and waited.
She took a breath. "Salok." Then with a parent's attempt at patience for the one who tried it most, she looked down at the little girl. "This is my daughter, T'Kel. She has proven... anti-social, including a difficulty with healers. Spock and I thought you might prove more successful in dealing with her."
T'Kel gazed up at her mother, not with Saavik's old look of hero worship at Spock, but a two years old child's gaze at a parent whose forbearance they were born to test.
Salok decided the deep satisfaction he experienced was not a violation of his emotional disciplines. He restrained himself to only giving a small nod. But then, the next words came out: "I have been known to face such a challenge before."
Saavik had the grace to appear chagrined.