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It starts off like this:
Back off, Conan,’ Rodney barks, glaring at Ronon. Sam Carter is too smart for you to put your meaty paws on her.’
Jesus, Rodney,’ John says, rolling his eyes. Chill.’
What,’ Rodney squawks, hands flailing. She is!’
Ronon´s grin is slow and evil and Rodney starts grumbling under his breath when Sam blinks rapidly and blushes under Ronon´s feral gaze.
This is patently unfair,’ Rodney says later, pacing John´s room. I have been patiently pining from afar like a gentleman and the second she shows up in the city the neanderthal´s molesting her with his you-know-you-want-to-fuck-me eyes and she´s putty!’
John rolls his eyes. Rodney, she barely said hey. Give her a break.’
She shouldn´t even be here,’ Rodney grumbles, sitting down heavily on John´s bed next to him.
John laughs. Most people want to be as close to the people they stalk as they can.’
Not at Elizabeth´s expense,’ Rodney says, and then suddenly it´s not funny any more.
Then it goes something like this:
But that´s theoretically impossible--’
Yes, Colonel, theoretically, but--’
No, McKay, you´re wrong, it has to be--’
No, Colonel, you´re wrong, because I´ve been working in the Pegasus Galaxy for over three years now so I think I know more about how much it gives a damn about something being theoretically impossible!’
Sam´s mouth quirks, an eyebrow lifting. Did you just anthropomorphize a galaxy?’
Rodney´s fists clench under the table and he takes a deep breath. That not withstanding, Colonel--’
John spends a lot more time in the labs than usual, eating popcorn with Zelenka and laughing at Rodney´s wild eyes and red face.
She´s impossible,’ Rodney says to John in the mess that night. Absolutely, infuriatingly, impossible!’
She´s also been doing this longer than you have,’ John says, and it´s specifically for the purpose of seeing Rodney´s nostrils flare like they do.
She is here to oversee Atlantis while Elizabeth recovers, not usurp my power and drive me insane while she´s at it,’ Rodney yells, causing half of the cafeteria to turn and stare at him. Oh, what? Like you´ve never heard me yell before?’
John sits back and watches Rodney ramp up to a full blown rant and grins to himself.
McKay, come on, I need that jumper working today!’
I will meet you in the hangar, Colonel, give me a moment!’
Hello, did you not hear me say a moment,’ Rodney says, the door opening to reveal him in a thin rumpled white t-shirt and smiley-faced boxers. It means momentarily. As in, shortly!’
John´s just about to laugh and make a crack about Rodney´s shorts being happy to see him when he sees lipstick smeared on the side of Rodney´s neck and a bra on the floor just behind him. The joke sticks in his throat.
So who was it,’ he asks later when Rodney´s head is buried under the jumper´s console so Rodney can´t see his expression. It´s easier to keep his tone light when he can glare down at him without Rodney seeing it. This morning. You got laid.’
Oh nice,’ Rodney snorts, slapping a wrench into John´s hand and snapping his fingers for the datapad. Real gentleman-like, Sheppard. Ever heard the expression don´t kiss and tell?’
John quirks a grin and cocks his head. So there was kissing involved. Who was it?’
No one,’ Rodney says, all business, and that makes John frown even more when he´s ducked back under the console. None of your business.’
He was working late in the lab with Colonel Carter last night,’ Radek tells him that evening over chess. You know, for someone that supposedly has a great deal of respect and admiration for her he sure does yell at her an awful lot.’
Huh,’ John says, concentrating on moving his next piece more than he needs to. Yeah, he uses the pulling-the-pigtails method of courtship.’
What John doesn´t say is that he never would´ve thought Carter would fall for it.
So of course, this happens:
You don´t like me very much,’ Sam says, grinning and cocking her hip against his desk.
What makes you say that,’ he says, frowning down at the paper she´s wrinkling with her ass. It´s not like he relishes doing paperwork but Lorne´s gonna be really annoyed when he has to redo everything because Carter got butt smudges all over it.
Oh, nothing really,’ Sam says, and he looks up to see her green eyes twinkling at him. There´s no doubt she´s pretty, just about every one of John´s marines falls all over themselves whenever she´s around, but he´s got no use for her pixie nose and long blonde hair that so flies in the face of regs. Just the fact that you glare at me when you think I´m not looking. Especially any time McKay´s around.’
Well that´s just not even true,’ he says, laughing and standing up, gathering the sheets of loose paper together in a bundle and binding them together with a paperclip.
Okay,’ she says, but her tone makes it clear that she´s not buying it for a second. This is why he hates having women superiors. Not because he doesn´t think they can do their job, not because it complicates things, not even because his men make idiots of themselves when they see her coming into a room, but because women have an innate ability to read right through the bullshit that most men can´t. It´s annoying.
Later, after he´s just finished explaining to Lorne why he has to retype every single report he´s already typed up once Lorne rolls his eyes and laughs right in his face. Like you´re one to talk about hair that flies in the face of regs,’ he says.
Lorne drops the grin but his eyes hold enough mirth to charge a zpm. I mean, yes sir. I hate her too.’
I´ve been sleeping with Colonel Carter. With with Sam.’
John swallows his bite of hamburger and just barely manages to not choke. I knew that.’
Really?’ Rodney blinks at him, frowning. You did? I already told you?’
John shakes his head. No, but I´m intuitive.’
Rodney snorts. Right.’ He waves a hand and shovels up a large portion of mashed potatoes and green beans. Well yes. That´s who it was. The other day. In my room.’
Yeah,’ John says, frowning down at his fork. Was there a point to you bringing this up?’
I don´t quite understand why,’ Rodney says softly, quietly. Uncertainly. He glances to the left and then the right and then leans forward, his voice dipping even lower. I don´t think she likes me very much. Or at all.’
John rolls his eyes. McKay, she´s fucking you. She likes something about you.’
Yes, she likes having sex with me,’ Rodney says, voice becoming bitter and hard. I´m actually quite good at that. What I mean is, I don´t think she likes me very much.’
John watches as Rodney´s teeth scrape angrily against his fork on his next bite, his fingers digging into the legs of his pants beneath the table. Well you don´t exactly act like you like her all that much either.’
Yes, but that´s an act, Sheppard,’ Rodney says, avoiding his gaze as he starts to pick up his section of the table, readying it for disposal. Don´t you know me well enough by now to know the difference?’
Later, when John is training with the punching bag and Ronon is holding it for him he pictures Sam Carter´s face in the middle of it.
At one point Ronon actually grunts in pain, his grin of approval making John frown.
Except Carter´s actually not that bad:
No. Absolutely not.’
I think if you´d just--’
You blew up a solar system the last time you tried this,’ Sam says calmly from behind her desk, arching an eyebrow as both of them look at her like they´d forgotten she was mediating. And nearly killed both yourself and Sheppard in the process.’
Sam´s eyes flash an angry green and Rodney immediately shuts up. No. Sheppard says no, and I agree with him.’
Oh like Sheppard knows particle physics half as well as I do, and besides--’
But he knows you, and he knows when you´re in over your head because you feel responsible for something that happened over a year ago and want to make some sort of recompense,’ Sam says, hands steady as she twirls a pen between her fingers. And I know particle physics a great deal more than half as well as you, and I say no as well.’
It dawns on John then that maybe Sam actually knows Rodney pretty well too at this point.
I think you´re wrong,’ he says later, standing next to Rodney in the lab, the Doranda simulations running on constant repeat before them.
Yes, you made that abundantly clear,’ Rodney bites out.
About her,’ John says, staring straight ahead. Carter likes you fine, Rodney. You´re just oblivious.’
I am possibly the smartest man in two galaxies, I am not oblivious,’ Rodney snarks back, frowning, a confused line running between his eyebrows.
Except when it comes to personal relationships,’ John says, smiling softly. Elizabeth used to always say you were completely hopeless when it came to those.’
Rodney sighs and John finally looks at him. I miss her,’ Rodney says, glancing at him.
Yeah,’ John says. Me too.’
He doesn´t say that half of that is because if Elizabeth were here, Sam wouldn´t be.
And then something goes typically wrong offworld:
McKay, stop it.’
But I just want to god, you smell good.’
McKay! You´re high!’
Yes, obviously,’ Rodney says, grinning brilliantly at him and curling up closer to John´s side. I´m almost positive it was the stew, but it´s possible it was airborne as well.’
If it were airborne I would´ve been affected too,’ John says, ignoring the way his cock twitches interestedly as Rodney´s breathe tickles against his hairline. Now move over to your side of the jail cell and go to sleep.’
But it´s cold, and you´re so warm,’ Rodney muffles against John´s shirt, hand running down John´s torso slowly but firmly.
John closes his eyes. Rodney.’
Did you really never know,’ Rodney whispers, fingers circling around the button to John´s BDU´s. Another inch down and Rodney will feel how hard John is and that can´t happen. It just can´t, not even if Rodney´s high. That I´ve wanted you. You never knew?’
John´s hands clench into fists by his side. Rodney you´re high and you don´t know what you´re talking about. Stop talking, stop touching me, and go. to. sleep.’
I´m high but I´m perfectly aware of what I want,’ Rodney says, hand sliding slowly down John´s hip, and John should really be putting a stop to this. Should really be twisting away and pushing Rodney´s hand away, but it´s squarely over his cock now and John´s wanted this for just too damn long. Wanted you,’ Rodney says into his neck, tongue darting out to lick just under John´s ear. So long.’
And what about Carter,’ John asks, fists in the sheets and eyes squeezed shut.
Rodney laughs. Want her too.’
John pushes Rodney off of the cot. He might would have punched him if Rodney had tried to start something again but that´s when Lorne and Ronon showed up with P90´s and hand grenades.
I have the worst hangover,’ Rodney says the next day. Did I hit my head?’
John looks at him and tries not to remember the way it felt to have Rodney´s breath ghosting over his face. Guess so.’
Then it becomes apparent that John´s not as subtle as he´d prefer:
I just wanted you to know,’ Sam says, signing documents even as she talks to him. I´ll be leaving at month´s end.’
Oh,’ John says, hands gripping the armrests of his chair. Will you?’
Yes,’ she says, glancing up at him and grinning quickly. Elizabeth will be returning on the next Daedelus trip.’
Huh,’ John says, because he doesn´t trust himself to speak out loud.
So you´ll be getting Rodney back all to yourself soon enough,’ Sam says, and John sits there stunned for a moment while she watches him, her grin blooming into an outright smile. Thought I didn´t know, huh?’
John frowns. Know what?’
Sam just cocks her head at him, arching an eyebrow. That´s all, Sheppard,’ she says, nodding and waving dismissively with her hand. It´s been a pleasure working with you.’
Right,’ he says, leaning forward. Uh. Sure.’
So she said while she didn´t regret what happened, it couldn´t continue once she left so we might as well call it quits now,’ Rodney says later, leaning against the wall by his room where John had walked him. It´s just as well. Long distance would never work.’
Milky Way to Pegasus is a bit more than long distance, McKay,’ John says, trying not to smirk too much.
Right, yes,’ Rodney says, nodding and uncrossing his arms, waving his hand over the control to open the door to his room. So I guess that´s that.’
You all right,’ John asks, frowning at him and putting a hand on his shoulder.
Rodney smiles. All right? I had a torrid love affair with a gorgeous blonde brilliant woman. While it´s tragic that it´s met its untimely end, of course I´m all right.’
John laughed as Rodney entered his quarters. Well so long as you have your priorities straight.’
And finally, finally, we get to the ‘Happily Ever After´ bit:
Do you remember M3G-549?’
Rodney frowns thoughtfully. The planet where they drugged my stew?’
Yeah,’ John says, nodding and stepping up beside him, leaning against the lab table. The mission where you hit on me.’
Rodney´s eyes go wide and his nostrils flare, and John laughs. I did I did what? The mission where I did what?!’
You said you wanted me,’ John says, leaning close, watching the way Rodney licks his lips. For a long time, you said.’
Rodney clears his throat, twisting his head to look at John but not backing away. I uh. I´m sure I don´t know what you I was drugged!’
You said it was an act,’ John says, walking behind Rodney and putting his hands on Rodney´s hips, leaning in close and speaking into his neck. That you yelled and insulted Carter because it was an act, to hide your true feelings.’
Rodney was shaking just slightly under John´s fingers, his breathe coming in quick gasps. I. Yes, somewhat.’
And I got to thinking,’ John says, resting his lips on Rodney´s neck for a moment, feeling his pulse beating rapidly under them. You insult me an awful lot too. Probably even more than you ever did her.’
Sheppard, I ’
Do you want me or not,’ John whispers into his skin, leaning into him, pressing his burgeoning erection against Rodney´s ass to erase any doubt in Rodney´s mind what would happen if he´d just say yes. Simple as that. Yes or no.’
Rodney´s hand grips the edge of the lab table, knuckles turning white. Yes,’ he finally blurts out. I did. I have. I do.’
Good,’ John says, and then he bites Rodney´s neck, sharp and hard, and Rodney shudders under his hands.
Oh, god,’ Rodney breathes, his hands falling from the table. Is this really happening?’
I don´t know,’ John says, running his hands down Rodney´s hips to the front, feeling Rodney´s hardon through his pants. Feels like it is to me.’
Later John smiles contentedly up at the ceiling in Rodney´s room, his leg hooked over Rodney´s. Why now,’ Rodney says, still breathing hard.
Why not now,’ John counters with, looking over at him.
This whole time we could´ve I mean, I´ve been ’
Let´s just say maybe it took a little push to get me to make a move, since you obviously weren´t going to.’
Rodney rolls his eyes and John laughs.
John sends a thanks to Sam Carter before he closes his eyes and falls asleep, the scent of Rodney still on his skin.
And that´s where this little story ends. Their story, on the other hand, has just begun.
glitterandlube wrote a comment fic of "this is my version of this story", which is located here, and you should really, really read it. It's fantastic and I love it SO MUCH.