August 2005

Disclaimer: Stargate Atlantis and its characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions.

"Do NOT go there, McKay!"

That one little phrase kept echoing over and over again in Rodney’s brain. Just moments before he’d been Rodney and when he questioned Sheppard’s ‘romantic’ attachment with his usual gracelessness and lack of tact he’d become McKay once more. To a very pissed off John Sheppard, his friend and teammate. The man for whom he felt... something that he could never admit to. Don’t ask, don’t tell that was the rule. God Sheppard really was Captain Kirk, rampantly heterosexual and hitting on any alien priestess he could find. And they all fell at his feet in supplication. Fuck it all.

But it still hurt.

More than he knew how to admit or verbalize.

So Rodney became even more obstinate in his efforts to prove Chaya false, to catch her at her lies. Of course he turned out to be right, but then he was always right. Yet for his efforts all he’d done was make the schism between himself and Sheppard that much more apparent. He’d lost the man who was, for all intents and purposes, his best friend, and for what?

Because he was jealous.

He wasn’t quite sure when his feelings for John Sheppard had changed from friendship to something more but he was smart enough to realize and accept that they had. Rodney had always known he was bisexual and growing up in Canada had afforded him the freedom to experiment with its more liberal mindset, thank God for that. Canada might be cold and miserable for almost half the year but it definitely made up for this with its human rights, hockey and its melting pot mentality.

However, none of that helped him with this growing... whatever it was for Major John Sheppard, USAF. So Rodney had buried it deep and clung to the friendship like a lifeline. Until Chaya had brought out his jealousy, which had, in turn, screwed everything up royally.

Because he could never be for John Sheppard what one Ancient woman had become in a matter of days... someone to love, protect and care for. Damn her and her flashy, glowy ascended being routine, her perfect body and her very obvious ability to do really cool things with Ancient gizmos.

Chaya was all the things he could never be, starting with the most obvious - a woman. Rodney silently wished he’d never agreed to come to Pegasus because all it had given him was a world of hurt and very little to show for it, at least that he could see at the moment.

Waiting for Sheppard to return from Proculus was excruciating. Both Weir and Grodin kept shooting these strangely sympathetic looks at him when they didn’t think he saw them, as if they knew. But how could they?

He wasn’t exactly a heart on his sleeve sort of guy and he’d been making all the correct noises, going on about hot Athosian women and so forth, so there was no way they should have connected the dots from Sheppard to his current insanity. If anything they should have been thinking that Sheppard had been a complete and total shit, acting the way he had when his friend was trying to protect him but no, they were looking at him like... like he was the wronged party and his partner was having an affair. Which couldn’t be further from the truth.

In fact, the only action Rodney had scored since arriving on Atlantis had been with his left hand. Admittedly there had been accompanying fantasies about a certain ranking military officer, but for all practical intents and purposes he’d been completely celibate which meant that there was definitely nothing to give away there. So he was left with the unanswered question of why the looks of sympathy from his friends? It was really starting to freak him out.

The minute the gate activated, Rodney let out a mental sigh of relief. When the puddle jumper came through with only John Sheppard inside of it something inside Rodney unclenched slightly. It wasn’t enough, however, to make the ache that seemed to have taken up permanent residence in his chest ever since he’d gone from being Rodney to being McKay go away.

Turning on his heel Rodney looked towards Elizabeth. "I’ll be in my lab if anyone needs me," he grated, making it perfectly obvious that it was best if no one needed him for a good long while.

Elizabeth nodded silently, a look of sympathy still gracing her face. Inwardly she made a note to give Rodney all the space he needed for as long as she could afford to give it to him. "Peter, inform Major Sheppard that I expect a debriefing as soon as he has the jumper in the hanger bay," she ordered her aide de camp as she watched her CSO and friend walk quickly out of the room.

"Oh, and call Dr. Zelenka to suggest that maybe he should find something for Dr. Kavanagh to do in some other part of the city for the rest of the day. I don’t think it fair to inflict that man on Carson unless we absolutely have to." It went unspoken that given the current mood of Dr. McKay it might be well within the realm of possibility that Calvin would end up under Carson’s ministrations should he push Rodney the wrong way, which he was wont to do.

"I think it might perhaps be prudent to advise Radek first, Dr. Weir. Just to be on the safe side. No doubt Major Sheppard is well versed in your desire for post-mission debriefings and I have a feeling that the sciences section of the city is the last place the major will be gravitating towards at the moment," Peter informed Elizabeth quietly, making sure he wasn’t overheard.

Besides, it wouldn’t do to let it get out that Atlantis’ very own Tin Man did, in fact, have a heart and one that was obviously causing him some pain at the moment and that, like the Tin Man, there was something, or in this case someone that could immobilize the indomitable Dr. McKay. The fact that Peter considered Rodney a friend was yet another reason to safeguard his department head’s emotional well-being.

Luckily for McKay very few people could see through his irascible outer shell to the good and vulnerable man that lay beneath. Carson, Elizabeth, Teyla, Radek and himself could, Peter thought with gentle good humor, which quickly turned somber as he thought of what he’d witnessed over the past few days.

He had thought that Major Sheppard too, could see the man beneath all the ‘snark’ as Rodney termed it. Perhaps he had been wrong about the major. Poor Rodney, he might not wear his emotions for the world to see but those who knew him saw through his act and right now they saw that Rodney was hurting. At least those that truly cared about him did.

John couldn’t put his finger on it but something was out of whack between he and McKay. Sure it had been a little uncomfortable for the first few days after the Chaya fiasco but he’d been man enough to put it behind him and he thought Rodney had too. Except that it seemed like McKay hadn’t.

Oh they still went on recon missions together, traipsing across the Pegasus Galaxy looking for ZPMs, allies and trading partners while slinging insults and zingers at each other, but something was off and John couldn’t quite figure out what. It was like Rodney was holding back, keeping his distance from John and the major couldn’t figure out why.

And what was up with that? When they were out in the field Rodney had started sticking closer to Teyla instead of him like he normally did. John tried very hard not to take it personally but damn it all they were supposed to be like Kirk and Spock or O’Neill and Jackson - the military leader and the science geek together through thick and thin.

What really burnt his balls, though, was all the help that Rodney seemed to be getting in avoiding John when they were Atlantis bound. Every time he tried to talk to the other man about just what the hell his problem was someone was popping out of the woodwork and dragging Rodney away.

Zelenka needed him in the labs; Elizabeth needed to consult with him about this or about that; Beckett wanted to run a few more tests on the first successful artificial ATA gene patient in order to see if he could figure out how to make the therapy more proficient. Even Grodin and Teyla seemed to need McKay’s advice whenever John tried to corner him.

And then there was Rodney McKay himself. Where he was once constantly underfoot, demanding John’s time and assistance with this gizmo or that Ancient tech thing, the man had suddenly seemed to have vanished into thin air. Even using Atlantis to help track the man was proving impossible, it was as if the city itself was warning McKay of John’s imminent arrival and giving the scientist just enough time to slip out of the mess hall, or where ever he was, thereby avoiding John entirely. It was slowly driving Sheppard mad.

"Teyla, what the hell is going on here?" he finally growled frustratedly, watching Rodney beat a hasty retreat yet again, this time with Zelenka at his side buzzing around like an annoying little bee. Rodney was allergic to bees, he thought off-handedly, so he should be swatting Zelenka away instead of looking so damned grateful for the little Czech’s sudden appearance.

"It is not my place to say, Major," Teyla replied quietly, her expression unreadable. "If you cannot figure this through then perhaps it is not for you to know either."

"Okay, is my brain leaking out of my ears? Because that made no sense at all," John sighed, rubbing his forehead tiredly. Teyla usually was the one who made the most sense in this fucked up part of the universe and now even she was speaking in riddles. And just what the fuck did all of this have to do with Rodney’s active avoidance of him?

"I feel like I’ve lost my best friend," he muttered morosely.

"And just whose fault is that, Major?" Teyla asked quietly, feeling a great deal of pity for the obviously upset man before her.

"Hey all I did was..."

"Turn your back on him when he was merely trying to watch after yours for you. But is it not possible that you only heard and saw whom you wanted to when she spoke with a sweet voice and soft promises of pleasant things?

"Chaya is everything that Dr. McKay is not; she is soft, gentle, sweet tongued, easy to look upon and pleasing to be with. She is not sharp angles and an even sharper tongue; however, nor is she loyal to a fault and willing to die in order to save you. She has never offered hope in the darkness and has never stood and fought by your side even when things looked bleakest. And she will never offer up her own safety... her very life in order to save others," Teyla chided John quietly.

"Dr. McKay is abundantly aware she is everything he will never be and yet of the two of them I will gladly entrust Dr. McKay with my life on a day to day basis because I believe that he is one of the truest and most loyal people I know. He may not have all the grace of other people but I would take his awkward acts of kindness over honeyed words, for those acts I know to be sincere and from the heart. I suggest you think on that Major Sheppard, as you try to figure out what is going on here."

John watched Teyla walk away while he tried to wrap his mind around what she said. "But that would mean that McKay..." Sheppard’s mind ground to a halt, not quite willing to go down that particular path just yet. "Fuck. Fuck me!"

"Sorry John, but you’re really not my type," Elizabeth Weir smirked from behind her military commander. "Now if it had been a certain scientist saying that I might just have to say yes, but then I’ve always been attracted to intellectual types."

"Hands off of McKay!" Sheppard snapped back before his brain engaged and realized that Elizabeth hadn’t even mentioned McKay at all. "Oh shit... umm, I gotta go and... clean my gun. Yeah that’s it. Later, Elizabeth." And with that John practically bolted down the hallway, leaving a very amused woman in his wake.

"Well that was a Freudian slip if ever I heard one," Elizabeth laughed quietly. "Poor Major Sheppard, getting bombarded from all sides today. Hopefully it might help resolve this impasse he and Dr. McKay seem to be in," she said to herself, turning down the same corridor Teyla had just taken, wanting to get her take on the current state of events in Atlantis.

In the end it took seeing Rodney bargain for their lives with Kolya to get John’s head out of his ass and make him face up to what he was feeling. Of course his timing sucked, as usual, because not only had Rodney’s attention begun to stray to the brainy yet cute Allina the Master Handler, but the minute they got back from Dagan they found out that the Wraith were on their way. Then there was the fact that Rodney’s snark had definitely become, well, snarkier of late, like he’d given up trying to be friends and had fallen back into his old patterns of behavior.

Yet facing imminent doom at, quite literally, the hands of a bunch of life sucking bug like aliens tended to put things in perspective. At least it did for John. However his conclusions were far from comforting.

John wouldn’t say that he’d fucked up but he would admit to willful blindness of certain undeniable facts and contributory negligence to the current impasse he faced with Dr. McKay. John was just as guilty of allowing Rodney to avoid him as Rodney was of the act of avoidance. And ever since Teyla and Weir had delivered their own version of a naquadah bomb to his beleaguered psyche John had become less than willing to mend the situation between he and Rodney. He’d needed time to process.

Actually he’d been running away and so deep in denial that he might as well have been stationed back in Egypt. But time was now the enemy of everyone on Atlantis and John was no longer granted the luxury of ignoring what could be his last hours to make things right. He couldn’t allow that for either of them.

As for the Chaya thing... Rodney had only been trying to protect him in his usual gauche manner. It had been an obviously altruistic act too, because Rodney had never once let on that his feelings were anything more than that of a good friend and he certainly hadn’t wanted to gain anything from it.

Then the idiot had gone and risked everything to bargain with Kolya in order to get them all off of Dagan alive, willingly handing himself over to the very man who’d tortured him in the not too distant past with no regard for his own safety. Rodney’s only thought being the survival of their team.

That act both humbled John and made him squirm like a worm on a hook, Teyla’s words from their little talk coming back to haunt him in vivid detail. ’And she will never offer up her own safety... her very life in order to save others.’ Rodney had done that very thing without hesitation. He’d fought so very hard to make sure they got out alive, applying his formidable intellect to the task of solving a riddle thousands of years old.

But from the moment they’d come back from Dagan, John, Rodney and all the other inhabitants of Atlantis had had to hit the ground running. Time was running out rapidly and the very survival of the Atlantis expedition was on the line. People existed on fumes and willpower alone. Whatever little sleep they could glean in the midst of nightmares was combined with adrenaline, caffeine and stimulates.

John wanted so much to find just a few minutes where he could talk to Rodney, just be with the man he called his friend. And as the days counted down it seemed to John that Rodney too had come to a similar epiphany. The silent battle of avoidance ceased and they began to work together again with the same ease and flow that had existed until Proculus, working ceaselessly to try and come up with a plan that might save them.

It was a double-edged sword. The camaraderie that John had so desperately missed was a balm to his soul and a stark reminder of just how much time he’d thrown away by allowing their situation to fester as long as it had. And it made him see that perhaps... just perhaps his feelings for Rodney were more in line with what he suspected were Rodney’s feelings for him than he’d originally thought.

If only they would be granted the time to figure it out. John prayed for the first time in a very long time that they would be granted that time, even though he had a sinking suspicion that those prayers wouldn’t be heard so far away from home.

Rodney wondered if he’d ever be able to sleep a solid night again. Even being back on Earth and far away from Atlantis hadn’t helped with the nightmares. He wasn’t even sure which one was worse, the one where he watched his friend Peter Grodin die, over and over in some sort of eternal time loop or the one where John had, in fact, managed to blow himself up along with the hive ship.

They were both equally horrific but it was a sad and sorry fact that no more harm could come to Peter, he really was dead. However, there was still a world of possible hurt, pain and death waiting for Sheppard back in Pegasus, so if he had to choose Rodney would say that it was the dreams about John that had his throat closing up in fear and his body drenched in a cold sweat. Damn the cocky son of a bitch anyways, ’so long, Rodney’? That’s the best that Sheppard could come up with?

Of course the fact that he’d been the one to complete the bomb that John had planned on blowing himself up with didn’t help alleviate any of Rodney’s guilt or his fears. Worst of all, though, was that Sheppard had left Rodney behind to watch helplessly as he had literally flown down the belly of the beast in a kamikaze run to save them all. The absolute bastard!

Rodney had leapt at the chance to come back to Earth and escape the nightmarish reality that was plaguing him, so much so that he was the first one through the Stargate. Finding Lt. Colonel Carter waiting for him on the other side was a Godsend when he realized that Sheppard had come through right after him.

In fact Sheppard had been doing his damnedest to get him alone ever since they’d faked Atlantis’ destruction and Rodney, of course, had slipped back into the habit of avoiding the major at all costs unless Elizabeth forced the meeting. The last thing McKay wanted was to deal with John Sheppard. Not when his defenses had been blown to hell and back because he thought Sheppard had died. Rodney had needed time to pick up the pieces of his psyche, which had been laid to waste during the siege of Atlantis.

So finding Samantha waiting for him on the other side of the Stargate, wanting to talk to him about everything he’d sent in that compressed data burst had been just the lifeline he’d needed. She had flown in from Area 51 specifically to talk to him so Rodney, of course, made himself available to her hoping she’d prove just the distraction he needed to get his equilibrium back and possibly forget all about Sheppard.

Of course, given Rodney’s luck it hadn’t worked out that way after all. He was so fucking hung up on one suicidal major of the male persuasion that he was unable to return the obvious interest that was finally in Colonel Carter’s eyes. Too damned little, too fucking late, Sam, thank you very much!

A year ago he’d have given almost anything for Sam Carter to be willing to give him more than the time of day but now... nothing. Not a single twitch of McKay jr. to prove that he was even the slightest bit interested. Not even her amazing intellect could do it for him anymore because all he could think of was that Sheppard had taken the Mensa test but had never bothered to join. Son of a bitch.

Currently Rodney found himself unable to sleep for fear of what lurked in the shadows of his subconscious, his mind running around on the little hamster wheel in his brain, stuck in an eternal feedback loop that seemed intent on playing images of John Sheppard over and over again in some sort of perverse self-imposed hell. He had to be up and back at Cheyenne in a few hours in order to finalize his short list of new personnel to bolster the dwindling ranks of the Sciences contingent of the expedition.

Giving up on actually achieving REM sleep the old fashioned way, Rodney got out of bed and stumbled down the stairs to the kitchen with its well stocked bar. At least the Air Force was treating him right this time, given his importance to the Atlantis mission and the fact that he’d given up his apartment when he’d first signed up for this joyride through hell. He’d been assigned, along with Carson Beckett and Elizabeth Weir, temporary quarters usually reserved for visiting military brass in the military compound. And the house had come fully stocked with all sorts of goodies like food, alcohol and cable TV. With shaking hands he poured himself a tumbler full of vodka, the one habit he’d walked away from Russia with and one of the few good things to come out of Russian cuisine, and tossed it back with barely a grimace.

Pouring another glass Rodney was about to make his way back to bed in the hopes that alcohol would dull his brain enough for him to finally fall asleep when his doorbell rang. Followed by staccato pounding on the door.

"Damn it, McKay, open the fucking door right now!" Major... no Lt. Colonel Sheppard ordered from outside. Rodney was tempted to let John keep banging until the MP’s arrived to escort him away but... Rodney let out a weary sigh as he made his way to the door; he was so fucking easy. All the man had to do was say jump and he’d start calculating the variables and wind speed to achieve optimal height. To top it all off, there was no way he could let John fuck up his newly received promotion, not when Rodney knew just how much it truly meant to the other man.

Putting on his best ‘fuck off and die while leaving me alone’ face, Rodney opened the door and glared at Sheppard. "Major, its 3:05 in the morning and some of us have to get up in, oh about two hours. What do you want?"

"What do I want? Let’s see, for starters I want you to stop treating me like a fucking plague victim and knock off the avoidance thing. Christ, Rodney," John sighed tiredly, rubbing his face with a hand. "Will ya let me in so I don’t have to have this conversation where it can be seen or heard? I just got promoted; I don’t want to end up court-martialled before I can get back to Atlantis."

Groaning in defeat, Rodney opened the door wider and stepped out of the way, letting John come in, not entirely certain of what he meant by the conversation being one that could get Sheppard court-martialled. "I really do have to get up in two hours, I wasn’t exaggerating, you know."

"Actually, no you don’t. I cleared it with Weir earlier tonight, err yesterday. She’ll go over your short list today, do another screening and then confer with you about her findings tomorrow," John replied, kicking off his regulation shoes and loosening his tie as he looked around. Taking the glass that Rodney still held he took a large swallow then pulled a face. "Vodka? You’ve been spending way too much time with the Russians again. You got any scotch?"

"Wait, wait, wait, what do you mean that Elizabeth... why wasn’t I informed... in the kitchen under the bar," Rodney muttered in resignation. Apparently even Elizabeth was conspiring against him now. Fate was a bitch; there was no two ways about it. Snatching back his glass from Lt. Colonel pain in the ass, Rodney headed into the living room, ignoring the man as Sheppard shed his uniform jacket and headed into the kitchen to rummage for a glass, scotch and ice.

"So did you cancel my meetings with Colonel Carter too?" Rodney yelled spitefully as he sank down onto one end of the sofa. The sound of an ice cube hitting the floor gave him a mean sense of satisfaction. Take that, Sheppard! He didn’t really expect an answer from Sheppard about Sam.

Thinking back to the day they’d arrived on Earth there had been something... not very officer and gentleman like in Sheppard’s eyes as he watched how Carter had made a beeline for Rodney and dragged him away to talk. Not that Rodney had been keeping an eye on Sheppard’s reaction or anything.

It had been a shadow of the same look John had gotten in his eyes when the Genii had tortured Rodney during the storm, cold and deadly. The sort of look that said ‘don’t fuck with what’s mine or you’re gonna end up on a slab.’ It was a look that confused the hell out of Dr. R. McKay, proven genius of two galaxies, if truth were told. Sipping at his vodka Rodney let the ice hot burn of alcohol slide down his throat and closed his eyes to better savor the feeling as these thoughts continued to roll around his over tired brain in random patterns.

The couch suddenly compressed right next to him, sending Rodney jumping a foot in the air and nearly causing him to slosh his drink. "Jesus fucking Christ! Remind me to buy a God damned cat bell for you before we ship back to Atlantis," the scientist gasped, clutching his chest with his free hand. "I’d like to actually make it back without dying of fright, you know."

John chuckled softly and settled himself more comfortably right next to Rodney, eliciting a death glare from McKay. "Just making myself comfortable, Rodney," he drawled.

"Yes, well do it on the other side of the sofa, will you?" Rodney snapped, feeling very claustrophobic all of a sudden. "And seriously, learn to make some noise when you walk. You took ten years off of my life just now."

"Exaggeration much?" John rejoined, feeling himself relax completely for the first time since... fuck since Chaya and the incident on Proculus. This finally felt right to him, sitting here, next to Rodney, baiting him and simply being with him.

"No, not really," McKay grimaced, taking a healthy mouthful of his drink to calm his still jumping nerves. Of course the real reason he was so damned nervous was proximity not surprise but he’d be damned if he would ever admit that. God damn the man for his Captain Kirk-like ability to ‘charm the girl’, he grumbled to himself.

John leaned over, pressing himself into Rodney’s side and made a slow but thorough examination of the top of his head. "Nope, no grey hairs cropping up. I’d say that you hadn’t aged a day let alone ten years."

"Smart ass," Rodney grumbled. "I’m assuming that there actually is a point to you barging into my house and disturbing my sleep at 0300 other than to just piss me off, Major?"

"Actually, it’s Lt. Colonel now. And you should have gotten the memo even if you didn’t come to the ceremony," he said with a slightly bitter tone to his voice. That, John admitted, had stung. A lot.

Rodney mumbled unintelligibly under his breath.

"What was that? You’re going to have to enunciate, Rodney. Maybe you need speech lessons?"

"Fuck you. I said... I was there. I was up in the command room," McKay finally admitted, his face flushing in embarrassment. The ceremony had been held in the gate room of the SGC with only the senior Atlantis staff and SGC personnel present. Rodney had let everyone believe he’d been off base conferring with Samantha at Area 51 but he’d actually flown back early and snuck into the command room to watch the ceremony while hidden in the shadows.

"You were?" John parroted, feeling unaccountably touched. Even when they were at odds Rodney had still been there, albeit out of sight. It gave John hope that maybe... just maybe... he still had a chance to fix what had gone wrong between he and McKay.

"Of course I was. I couldn’t very well pass up the opportunity to see your version of a Hail Mary, now could I?" Rodney replied smugly before tossing back the remaining liquid in his glass and setting it down on the floor next to the couch.

"Gee, thanks McKay, you’re all heart."

"I know, a regular Tin Man," Rodney replied without thinking. "Fuck."


"Peter Grodin. He used to call me that as a joke, the Tin Man. He was... a good friend. And I left him alone to die," Rodney replied quietly, his eyes becoming haunted with grief and remembered nightmares.

"No you didn’t Rodney. You were there with him, right up to the end. He was never alone. He knew you were there and he knew you’d go on to do what you had to and help save Atlantis," Sheppard corrected the upset man. "He knew you would have done anything to change places with him. That’s the sort of man you are, Rodney McKay. The sort of man I’m proud to call my friend."

Harsh breath hitched in Rodney’s throat, coming out more of a sob than anything else. "Am I? I don’t know if I am anymore. I don’t know anything... Jesus, I’m just so damned tired." And he was. Bone weary. The weeks on Earth had been anything but relaxing. Nightmares kept him awake at night and the constant stream of interviews for new recruits combined with Carter constantly interrupting for a clarification of this or that. Not to mention Elizabeth and Carson’s well meaning checking up on him had left him both mentally and physically exhausted during the day.

This entire situation was almost worse than the weeks leading up to the Wraith attack. At least in Atlantis he’d had a purpose, a reason to be so damned busy he couldn’t even think straight. He had been driven by the need for everyone’s survival. But here, back on Earth, nothing had changed but everything had. He had. Rodney was no longer a bureaucratic pencil pushing geek, smug in his self-importance and intellect.

Brendan Gaul had been right all those months ago. He wasn’t like the rest of the scientists on Atlantis anymore and he no longer fit into the mould of his Earth bound contemporaries either. Rodney had become a strange hybrid of scientist and warrior, but what surprised him the most was that he had found that he didn’t mind this a bit. In fact, he rather liked the person he seemed to be evolving into.

"I just want to go home, John," he finally admitted at last. "I miss the water. I miss Atlantis."

"So do I," Sheppard replied, bumping shoulders with Rodney. "Just one more week. Two at the outside and we’ll be on our way back."

"With eighteen days of being confined in a flying sardine can called a ship," Rodney groused, not looking forward to the return flight home. "Getting to Atlantis was much easier the first time and yes, yes, I know we’d need another zero point module to do it a second time but it doesn’t mean that I can’t comment on the relative ease of our first trip."

"Never change, Rodney. Please," John asked, a slight smile spreading across his face.

"Why would I? I like who I am... for the most part. It’s the rest of the universe that has to learn to appreciate me."

"What would you say if I told you some of us already do?" John asked quietly, figuring that there was no time like the present to get to the heart of the reason why he’d come calling at three in the morning.

"I’d say that you’ve lost the ability to hold your liquor, Colonel, and that I should confiscate that scotch before you make yourself loopy," McKay replied caustically.

A startled laugh forced it’s way out of John’s mouth. Setting aside the scotch, he turned sideways on the couch, his leg now pressing into Rodney’s as he watched the nervous tick appear in his friend’s right eye. Rodney swallowed hard and rubbed his hands against his boxer-clad thighs; his eyes danced around the room in an effort to avoid John’s very direct stare. Oh yes, the good doctor was definitely nervous right now.

"I mean it, Rodney. Never ever change," John murmured just before he reached out to cup the startled scientist’s cheek, swiveling Rodney’s head around to face his. McKay’s Atlantis blue eyes had taken on a deer in the headlights gleam. John found the look rather endearing and entirely too irresistible for words.

Leaning forward, John brushed his lips against Rodney’s gently at first and then more insistently. McKay was startled enough to open his mouth in order to protest and that was all the invitation Sheppard needed to plunge his tongue inside the other man’s mouth. It was both similar to kissing a woman and entirely alien at the same time, John thought distractedly as he set about winning Rodney over.

The scruffy overnight growth of beard scratched his cheeks but Rodney’s lips were soft and mobile, and his mouth was oh so wet and warm. He tasted of vodka and mint toothpaste and... surprisingly enough lemons. John’s scientist was sweet and tart and entirely addictive.

And he was finally regaining his senses.

Scrabbling backwards McKay managed to push himself away from John while overbalancing himself at the same time. With a startled squawk and wind milling arms Rodney tipped over onto the floor, emitting a pained oof as his tailbone connected with hardwood.

"What the hell was that? I mean what were you thinking? You could have something very, very bad happen to you if anyone ever saw you kissing another man!" he bellowed up at John when he finally managed to regain the wind that had been knocked out of him.

"You may want to keep it down, Rodney. It’s not nice to wake the neighbors at... 3:30 in the morning," John replied in mild amusement, which earned him a ‘fuck you and the horse you rode in on’ glare.

"Okay, you can leave now."

"Sorry, no, I can’t," John replied with a grin, standing up and moving towards Rodney who scuttled backwards in attempt to avoid him. This, of course, only worked until he literally ran into a brick wall.

"Ow," Rodney groused, rubbing the back of his head. "You could have warned me or something."

"And you could have sat still long enough to let me help you to your feet instead of doing your imitation of a sand crab," John drawled, offering a hand down to the put upon scientist.

Rodney sat there for a moment, looking from John’s hand to his face and back again, trying to calculate the odds of him avoiding the helping hand versus what would actually happen if he accepted it. Finally coming to the conclusion that he really did have his back up against a wall and no room to maneuver, Rodney placed his hand in John’s with a disgruntled sigh and allowed himself to be pulled to his feet.

And then pulled into a warm, strong and far too attractive body. "Major, what the hell sort of game are you playing at?" Rodney demanded, his voice strained and beginning to show the first signs of full-blown panic. "Will you fucking let me go?"

"Sorry, Rodney, I don’t think I can do that," John replied quietly. "And it’s Lt. Colonel Sheppard, remember?" he continued idly, his fingers tracing soothing patterns along McKay’s spine, gentling the spooked scientist with his touch.

It had taken a lot of thought and quite a bit of subtle online research into the idea of gay sex for John to accept that yes, he really did want to give this a try with Rodney. Admittedly they’d have to be incredibly circumspect and not get caught, but that last month on Atlantis had finally convinced John that he really wasn’t willing to let his scientist go or to share him with anyone else, especially not romantically. Rodney McKay was his. Now all he had to do was convince the man in question of that fact. And so far he wasn’t doing all that well.

"What the hell do you think you’re doing? If this is some kind of a joke, Sheppard it’s not fucking funny anymore. I mean it, let me go damn you!" Rodney ordered, beginning to struggle as his body reacted all too predictably to the gently arousing touch. Just what the hell kind of game was the colonel playing at now?

It was like he knew that Rodney was in love with him and... oh fuck, did he know? If he did it meant that there was no way that Rodney could go back to Atlantis. Not now. Damn it, he might as well have been sucked dry by the Wraith, his life was going to become nothing more than a long, miserable existence here on Earth, denied the very things that he wanted most in the universe: Atlantis and John Sheppard.

"Rodney, knock it off. Stop struggling. I mean it. Listen to me will ya? Dammit, McKay!" John suddenly found himself with an armful of struggling, fighting scientist and when the hell had Rodney gotten this strong and resourceful? Grunting as a fist connected with his solar plexus Sheppard realized he had to contain the situation quickly so he crowded them back until Rodney was pressed up against the wall once more, this time with John’s body acting as the restraining device.

Managing to gain command of Rodney’s arms, John pinned them above the scientist’s head, leaving Rodney startled, panting, vulnerable and oh so fucking tempting. "I mean it, Rodney," he finally murmured, still panting for breath from their struggles, his chest heaving in tandem with McKay’s.

"I can’t let you go. I really can’t. I tried. I ran far and fast but then you had to go and do that stupid thing you do, risking your life for others. How could I let you go after that? You’re mine, Rodney McKay, and I’m all kinds of fucking idiot for not realizing it sooner. Just like I’m yours. I am yours, Rodney, body and soul, tattered though they may be."

And with that John was claiming Rodney’s mouth once more, this time with ravenous hunger. How had John not realized just how good it would be between the two of them? How hungry he would be for everything that made up Rodney McKay? None of his research had given him the slightest glimmer of just how wild the needy little sounds Rodney was making in the back of throat would drive him or how easy it was to become addicted to that tart sweetness that flavored this man’s mouth.

God, the way Rodney’s hands folded downwards, fingers curling around his own made John feel like a fucking God or something. He could feel Rodney get hard and instead of freaking him out it made him pant like a dog in heat. He actually wanted to drop to his knees, shuck McKay out of his boxers and suck him off.

Rodney whimpered in the back of his throat and finally had to pull back in order to breathe in fresh air. Panting, he let his eyes close and his tongue darted out to catch the flavor on his lips. "God, if this is a hypoglycemic hallucination or the result of an alien probe or something don’t revive me, okay? I can die happy now," he finally managed to get out.

A startled chortle broke free of John as he stared down at the tempting sight of pink tongue and red lips. "You’re not hallucinating and there’s no alien probing you, McKay. This is as real as it’s ever going to get, I promise you. In fact the only probing you’ll receive any time soon will be done by me, got that?"

One eye opened to study Sheppard suspiciously. "Okay, when did the body snatchers invade and where’s the pod holding the real John Sheppard?"

"Sorry, no body snatchers. I’m the real McCoy," John replied. "So will you at least let me explain without trying to knock the wind out of me now? Or am I going to have to tie you to the bed?"

Rodney couldn’t help the shiver that chased its way up his spine or the further hardening of his cock. He was a kinky bastard when it got right down to it and the idea of John Sheppard tying him up caused a reaction. Blushing, Rodney tried to look anywhere but at John.

His body, however, betrayed him as per usual and John’s face broke out into a truly terrifying blend of amusement and lust. "So maybe I’ll tie you to the bed for the hell of it and then explain," he drawled as he took in the spreading color to McKay’s cheeks.

"How about no?" Rodney replied with a martyred sort of dignity. "But an explanation would be appreciated. Last time I checked you were decidedly heterosexual and I think it’s pretty safe to say that I have the wrong equipment to fulfill the parameters of your typical romantic interest."

"What would you say if I told you that I’ve recently had my horizons expanded?" John asked, watching Rodney carefully.

His first reaction was blinding jealousy. Who the fuck had touched Sheppard and where was the nearest P-90 so that Rodney could empty a clip into them? The look of quiet satisfaction on the man’s face snapped him back into the moment, however. "So not funny, Colonel," he finally stated, "and will you let me go already? I’m starting to lose sensation in my arms here."

"Oh I don’t know, I kinda like you like this, Rodney. At my mercy," John chuckled and moved out of the way just in time to avoid having his boys crushed by Rodney’s knee of destruction. "Now that wasn’t nice at all. I’ve been doing research and I plan on using them in the not too distant future."

"I’m sure you and your right hand have more than a passing acquaintance with one another, it shouldn’t mind a little damage to the goods," McKay shot back. "Because if you think you’re getting anywhere near anything of mine any time soon, you’re sadly mistaken."

"Ye of little faith, Rodney McKay," John chuckled. "I may only know about what I’ve read but I’m an eager student and am quite willing to learn. I should be getting bonus points for that, don’t you think?"

"Oh that’s ever so appealing," Rodney snarked back. Unfortunately, though he was loath to admit it, it really was appealing. The idea of being the one to teach Sheppard the joys of gay sex was almost more than he could resist. He had to try however. "And what ever happened to getting yourself court-martialled for admitting what you just did?"

"You’re a civilian and when have I ever ‘conformed’ to being a good little military man?"

"You just got made Lt. Colonel. Don’t tell me you’re already bucking to get knocked back down to Major or even Captain," Rodney retorted, somewhat shocked by Sheppard’s lackadaisical attitude.

"As long as they don’t kick me off of the Atlantis project it wouldn’t really bother me, darlin’. And I doubt they’d do that, Elizabeth likes me too much and no one can light the old girl up like I can," John replied honestly.

"Did you just call me darling?" Rodney asked, his voice rising in outraged disbelief, ignoring the fact that technically John had just called Elizabeth an old girl. He had obviously been referring to Atlantis but... "Tell me I did not hear you call me that... that..." the scientist spluttered, his train of thought totally derailed by the saccharine endearment that John had just used in conjunction with him.

"Rodney, shut up," John replied fondly before sealing his mouth over the other man’s once more. He could see that they were getting nowhere with actual conversation. Rodney seemed determined to harangue him about his career when all John really wanted to talk about was the two of them. The one and only time he’d had Rodney’s full agreement during this whole debacle of a night was when he’d been kissing the other man senseless. So it was time to fall back to plan ‘b’. Seduce the scientist and deal with the fallout the morning after some seriously hot sex.

Even as his mouth opened wider to allow John’s entry and his hands crept up to twine around the other man’s neck Rodney’s mind tried desperately to engage so that he could level the full power of his not inconsiderable intellect into castigating Sheppard for his foolishness. However his higher brain functions were successfully rerouted by his baser needs and with a whimper of defeat he thrust his tongue into John’s mouth, one final intelligent thought managing to penetrate the fugue of lust that had overtaken him. Just who was teaching whom here?

‘It’s not so different, really,’ John thought, as his tongue slid over Rodney’s, tasting the other man thoroughly. All right, the razor burn was something new and there was none of the usual flirtatiousness or coy behavior that he was used to with a woman. The kiss was forthright, powerful and so very hungry. It made no excuses about being from a man and one who was just as comfortable in his own skin as John was.

There was something definitely arousing about being with someone who wasn’t afraid to fight back, whose strength nearly matched his own. The fact that it was Rodney only made it that much more... right... in John’s mind.

This was how it was meant to be; this man was his; his scientist, his friend, his partner, and now his lover. It was evolution on the most basic level; it was as simple as calculating the slope of descent or figuring out the physics of lift and drag - things that came to John as naturally as breathing. Just like being with Rodney. Why had he fought against it for so long?

Well, no more. He would no longer struggle what ever this was between them. In fact John Sheppard intended to embrace it, and Rodney, with everything he had, but then he never truly did anything by half measures. Hell even when he screwed up he did it big, so why wouldn’t this be any different? Because, after all, this could be the most important thing he’d ever done in his life, including Atlantis.

Gasping for air, John’s fingers raked through Rodney’s hair, holding his head still so he could look into those incredible eyes. There was so much fire in their depths, they burned the blue of the hottest part of the flame and currently they burned for him. "I want you, fuck, I want you so much it burns, McKay. Say yes. Let me take you to bed, show me the reality of the things I’ve only seen on websites. Teach me how to love you, Rodney."

"Fuck. Oh fuck. How do you expect me to say no to something like that?" Rodney moaned, ignoring the tug of hair being pulled taut as he leaned forward to press his forehead against the bridge of Sheppard’s nose. "You play an incredibly dirty game of pool, Major," he sighed at last.

"It’s Colonel, Rodney, and I believe in stacking the odds in my favor. I prefer the whole win-win scenario. It makes for a happier ending."

"You like cheating," Rodney surmised, looking slightly aggrieved. "Admit it. You came here already planning on using your boyish charm to win me over. The problem is I’m not some hot alien chick with super cool powers. I’m plain old Rodney McKay, genius of two galaxies and proudly Canadian."

"And I wouldn’t want you any other way. As for the hot alien chicks with super cool powers... well I’d take plain old Canadian super genius of two galaxies Rodney McKay any day of the week. Besides, beauty fades but brains are an eternal turn on. Like it or not, McKay, you’re fucking hot," John whispered as he guided Rodney, unresisting, out of the living room and up the stairs.

"Well of course I am. It doesn’t say much for you that it took you until now to realize it!"

"To borrow a tried and true line, denial ain’t just a river in Egypt, babe," John chuckled as he turned them into the first room with an open door. Big, rumpled bed, check. Clothes on the floor, check. Yup, this was the place.

"Again with the stereotypical pet names," Rodney sighed, trying to look put upon. In the silence of the organized chaos that was his mind the scientist had to admit that he actually liked babe; it was about the only one he didn’t think sounded too cutesy wootsey. And to hear it roll off of John Sheppard’s lips? Pure heaven. Not that he’d admit it though; after all Rodney had a reputation to maintain.

"What can I say? I’m a sucker for bad lines and cheesy monikers. I’m sure you’ll eventually learn to appreciate those qualities as well as my charming wit, Mensa-sized brain and buff body. See what a great catch I am? How can you resist me?"

"Keep it up and I’ll be happy to demonstrate just how easy it is," Rodney scowled. Like he and half the freaking Pegasus Galaxy didn’t already know what a great catch Sheppard was. Hell even Cowan, the political leader of the Genii, had given the major a once over before he’d showed his true colors as the murdering psychopathic whack job he was.

"Rodney, Rodney, Rodney," John tsked as he placed a hand above the other man’s heart and pushed. Rodney went sprawling back onto the bed and before he had time to recover from the tumble John was on top of him, pressing him into the mattress. "Saying things like that? Not so smart of you. It’s like waving a red flag in front of a bull. Makes me want to prove you so very wrong."

Not giving the incredibly verbose man a chance to get a word in edgewise, John sealed his mouth over Rodney’s yet again. He’d come to the conclusion that he really enjoyed frenching this man. If nothing else, the verbal gymnastics Rodney delivered on a daily basis had given him a very impressive repertoire of oral dexterity.

A full body shudder chased its way through John as he imagined that dexterity used elsewhere on his person. He’d always been a sucker for a good blowjob and if Rodney’s current lingual abilities were any indication John had a feeling it would literally blow his mind. He was almost tempted to forgo his game plan in order to test his theory. Almost but not quite.

Bottom line, John Sheppard desperately wanted to get laid... well, okay, he wanted to be the one doing the actual penetrating because he was still a little leery of letting a dick boldly go where none had gone before; at least until he’d had a little more time to get used to the idea. He just hoped he could convince the good doctor that his idea was a truly excellent one.

Breaking off the kiss when oxygen had once more become a necessity, John moved quickly to implement his plan. The tee shirt that McKay had worn to bed was tugged up and over the other man’s head before he could really protest. John’s own dress shirt was off just seconds later, the undershirt following it close behind. Next was his belt and the pants were unbuttoned but left on for the mean time.

The whole lack of breasts thing was a little hard to get used to at first glance but the more he looked the more John liked. It was only Rodney’s exasperated snort that brought him back to the present.

"Sorry, but not even wishing will make them grow," Rodney informed John sarcastically, doing his best not to squirm under the excruciating examination. He hadn’t felt this exposed since ninth grade when he was forced to take that damned phys. ed class and his class had shared a locker room with the seniors who’d had the same phys ed. period in the gym next door. Nothing like being a scrawny minor niner bisexual nerd and standing next to the heartthrob of the high school who happened to be the clichéd jock captain of the football team with cheerleading girlfriend. If he hadn’t developed the ego he had he didn’t quite know how he would have dealt with most of that teenaged angst he’d been forced to go through thanks to puberty. Thank God for superior intellect.

"I wasn’t... I didn’t... je-sus McKay!" John groaned, "I was simply admiring the view. I mean, you’re pretty damned hot for a geek, you know that right? Must be all that off world activity you get yourself into."

"Excuse me? Just who the hell gets who into trouble more times than not, and don’t be looking at me!" Rodney sputtered, looking completely outraged, which was exactly what John had been hoping for. A snarling Rodney McKay was incredibly sexy. Of course Rodney realized Sheppard’s intent to get a reaction from him as he watched John’s eyes take on a lustful sheen. "You are such an ass, Sheppard!" he groused.

"Yeah but you lust me bad, McKay. Just like I lust you," John replied with a waggle of his eyebrows. "And you think my ass is hot." As if to prove his point, John stood and shucked out of his pants and boxer briefs, tossing them to the floor to join the rest of his clothes.

Rodney grumbled under his breath as he was in no position to deny that particular claim. He did think Sheppard’s ass was hot, especially when it was being displayed as it was right now. "You’re still a smug bastard about it. It’s highly unattractive."

John mock glared down at Rodney and quickly resumed his position on top of the man lying on the bed. "Okay, you really need to stop talking now. There’s this whole ego thing... you’re deflating mine."

"Pussy," Rodney smirked. "I’m not going to change for anyone, Sheppard. Not even you. Love me or leave me."

John held still for a full minute which, considering the body he was lying on top of and how hard he was, was a miracle in and of itself, and then looked down intently at Rodney. "See, still here," he informed the almost belligerent man with quiet passion.

Rodney gaped up at the newly appointed lieutenant colonel for a long moment and then with a sound that was part protest and part surrender he reached up and yanked John’s head down so he could devour his mouth.

Internally Rodney’s mind was racing. Did that mean that John was really in this for the long haul, that this was a relationship instead of just a quick fuck before rules and regs got in the way? Could he trust Sheppard enough to go through with this and to actually try to establish a real relationship with the man?

Whatever the outcome was Rodney would think about it come the morning. Right now he was laid bare, stripped of all defenses. He wanted this, his body was crying out for relief and release. It had been so damned long since he’d had sex and by god he was tired of resisting, so no more. Breaking off the kiss he looked into multi-faceted hazel eyes above him that sparked with heat.

"I want you to fuck me," he stated decisively as he raised his hips off of the bed and ground hard into John’s obvious erection. Damned good thing he was just as comfortable with being fucked as he was with fucking... although it had been over a year since he’d indulged in this particular side of his sexuality.

John gaped like a landed fish. For all of his supposedly clever machinations and attempts at seduction, all it had taken was the promise that he was sticking around. Which he damned well was. Now Rodney was taking control and offering him the very thing he’d been after from the moment he’d been greeted by a sleep rumpled Rodney McKay! Well, okay, one of the things but he really wanted to be as intimate with Rodney as he could be this first time. Blowjobs, hand jobs and frottage just wouldn’t cut it.

Rodney quirked an eyebrow at the stunned look on John’s face. He had this suspicion that he had just derailed whatever elaborate plans the devious air force officer had cooked up in order to get him to say what he just did. Rodney thought the two by four to the back of the head expression on Sheppard’s face was really quite adorable.

"What, you don’t want to fuck me?" he queried dryly. "Guess that means you want to jump head first into the world of anal penetration. My aren’t you the brave little soldier?"

"NO! I mean I’m not, I mean I want to but... fuck you, McKay, you know what I mean," John stuttered, falling over his words as he tried to convey his intentions. "I want to fuck you. Really, really badly. And I want to be fucked by you just... let me work up to it, okay? I seriously am a virgin here."

"And I get to pop your cherry. I feel like I’m back at the high school prom with my girlfriend," Rodney cooed, batting his eyelashes. "Don’t worry, Colonel, I promise I’ll be gentle."

"You are such a fucking ass," John groused, rolling his eyes.

"Yeah but you said it yourself, you lust me bad. And since you want into said ass, so you’ll just have to put up with me," Rodney grinned, tugging John back down for another kiss, which John happily obliged him with.

Putting up with McKay really wasn’t all that difficult. In fact the insults and snappy repartee were actually arousing. There was something to be said for not only physical but cerebral stimulation. Life with Rodney in his bed as well as being his work partner promised to make John’s life very interesting. He wouldn’t want it any other way

John’s hands, which had been pressing down on Rodney’s shoulders softened and fingers trailed through the light dusting of chest hair on the scientist’s upper torso until he found the nipples that had been constantly visible through the other man’s ‘scientist’ uniform while on Atlantis. A shocked gasp of arousal and the sudden up thrust of Rodney’s hips told John he’d scored a direct hit on an erogenous zone. Cool.

Rodney’s hands weren’t idle either. They were racing back and forth down John’s back, feeling his muscles shift as the sinew contracted and released. Dipping lower he mounded and squeezed John’s ass, enjoying the aroused growl that issued low in his partner’s throat. Taking a chance Rodney slipped a finger between John’s ass cheeks and began to gently stroke a finger across his anus. The surprised hitch of breath almost had Rodney pulling away and then John actually leaned back into the caress.

Breaking off the kiss, John rested his head on Rodney’s shoulder and sucked in great lungs full of air as the pleasure coursing through his veins fought with a part of him that had been brainwashed by decades of propaganda that told him that this sort of thing was dirty and bad, ideas which had only been reinforced since he’d started having sex. It was an interesting sensation and one that actually felt really good. Groaning almost inaudibly John held his body ramrod stiff, trying to assimilate and process the feelings surging within him.

Rodney felt the tension and began to lay butterfly kisses across John’s shoulder and neck. The fact that the other man wasn’t pulling away or getting freaked out was surprising and incredibly arousing. However, he didn’t want to push his luck. Light petting was as far as he was willing to go for the moment. "Shh," he murmured, "don’t think, just feel. I won’t do anything you’re not ready for John, I promise," he hastened to assure the man.

Rodney’s words drew John out of his state of confusion with a stifled bark of laughter. "God, it really is prom night for you, isn’t it?" he teased as he raised his head to look down at Rodney, hazel eyes dancing with amusement and delight. "I promise not to swoon when you try and put it in me."

"Asshole," Rodney muttered, but couldn’t help the upwards quirk of lips. It really was quite comical, actually. "I promised to be gentle, didn’t I?"

"My hero," John replied dryly, looking down at his lover, god that sounded good! "Now do you mind if we get back to what we were doing before you decided to try and imitate Schecky Green?"


"Rodney, you really need to get out more," John sighed. "Your knowledge of popular culture is atrocious. However, we have more important things to concentrate on right now so why don’t you shut up now, okay?" And with that he dove back in to reclaim the tart mouth that had created in him a variety of emotions that ranged from respect and friendship to murder and lust since the moment it had first opened in John’s presence.

It didn’t take long for the two men to regain the arousal that had waned slightly during their brief dialogue. They were both hungry, desperate for each other and with satisfaction so close it didn’t take much encouragement on either man’s part. Rodney’s hands raced across lean muscle as he gasped and bucked upwards, grinding himself into John just as John was grinding down into him. He was riding the edge and he knew it.

"H..how much research did you do?" he gasped, trying to get a grip on himself.

"Wha?" John mumbled as he dove downwards to suck on one of those perky little nipples that had taunted him for the better part of a year.

"How much do you know about anal sex?" Rodney groaned, trying to remained focused and to get John to focus just long enough to figure out how much coaching Rodney had to do.

"Y’wanna talk about this now?" John whined, finally looking up.

"Well if you’re planning on just spreading me open and taking me dry, hell yes!" the scientist retorted. He was expecting a little discomfort considering how long it had been but he wanted to be able to sit down in the morning.

"I’m not planning on taking you dry!" John replied in shock. "I know I need to use lube."

"And you know you need to stretch me, right, or I need to stretch me but either way I need to be stretched," Rodney continued, half slipping into lecture mode. "It’s not like fucking a woman and it’s more than one finger, two fingers, three fingers, fuck."

"Geez, McKay, take the romance out of it whydoncha?" John groaned, his head falling forward to rest on Rodney’s chest. The truth was, John actually had thought it was the one finger, two finger deal. Thank god Rodney was smart enough to know when John was bluffing, especially about this.

"Yes, I thought so," Rodney smirked. "Get off me."

"What?!?" John all but bellowed. "You can’t be serious, you’re gonna stop just because..." he trailed off as Rodney’s smirk widened. "You piece of shit! You really had me going," John groaned as he realized that Rodney was playing him. "Your poker face is getting better, you had me there for a second."

"Good, you’re too damned cocky for your own good at times," Rodney replied with a chuckle. "Seriously, get off me. I need to be on top. You don’t know what the hell you’re doing and I don’t have enough patience to teach you right now. I really need some relief, and fast," he continued, squirming underneath John in an effort to get out from under him.

"This doesn’t mean that you’re going to..." John trailed off as he rolled to the side and then on to his back next to Rodney, freeing the other man to move.

"Noo-ooo, I’m not going to pop your cherry, Colonel. Rest assured you’re safe from my wicked wiles, at least tonight. I told you I wanted you to fuck me, I haven’t changed my mind," the astrophysicist replied sarcastically as he rolled to the side in order to reach into his night table drawer to grab a condom and the tube of BIOglide he kept there before coming up to his knees.

Moving so that he was straddling John’s hips, Rodney grinned maniacally as he squirted a huge dollop of the lube onto John’s stomach, enjoying the yelp the cool gel elicited when it hit heated flesh. "Body temperature works best for this stuff and I need my hands free," he smirked as he reached down and swirled his fingers through the slick substance.

"Anyone ever tell you that you’re evil?" John panted.

"All the time. Aren’t you lucky I’m on your side?" The first thing Rodney did was put the condom on John, not wanting to leave it for later and then forget entirely. After the latex sheath was firmly in place around a nicely impressive cock, Rodney got to work on himself. Leaning forward and resting his weight on one hand, Rodney reached behind him and gently worked one finger inside his ass lubricating and loosening as he moved it in and out. Concentration warred with pleasure and the two emotions chased each other back and forth across his face for John to see.

Gasping slightly he pulled the one finger out then coated it and a second finger in the lubricant then repeated the process, carefully sliding both fingers inside and allowing himself to get used to the sensation of being filled after so long without. Moaning as the tip of a finger brushed across his prostate, Rodney bit down hard on his lower lip, breathing heavily as his eyes slid shut in pure bliss.

"Oh God. Oh fuck, you’re killing me here, Rodney," John groaned as he watched what had to be the hottest thing he’d ever seen. Not even porn was this hot. Hell not even that time when he’d done those Swedish twin sisters at the same time while he was stationed at Ramstein Air Force Base could compare to this. The sight of McKay shoving his own fingers up his ass so that he could stretch and prepare himself for John to fuck him was the most erotic display of carnality he’d ever seen in his entire life.

Letting out a little mewl of pleasure, Rodney began to ride his fingers, the desperation in John’s voice shooting straight to his cock. Pulling out his fingers yet again, Rodney decided that enough was enough; he was going to burst something important if he didn’t get fucked right now.

Swirling his palm in the gel, Rodney wasted no time in reaching back yet again, this time to slick Sheppard’s latex covered cock. Shifting his weight, Rodney held John still and, with a slight hiss at the burn of not being stretched quite enough, let gravity do most of the work as he impaled himself on his lover.

"Holy fucking God, Rodney!" John gasped; fighting the urge to buck upwards as his cock was slowly enveloped and squeezed within a vice-like grip. And the heat, God fucking damn, the heat! His hands shot out to grasp Rodney’s hips hard enough to leave bruises and he was panting just as badly as he had been after challenging Ford to a race from one end of Atlantis to the other when they had been so bored they thought their brains were atrophying into those dead trees left by the Ancients. Being inside Rodney, it was, this was... transcendent.

"I’d state the obvious, that I’m not a God, but I kind of like the term," Rodney panted, his hands braced on Sheppard’s chest as he let himself get used to the unbelievable feeling of fullness. "You know, you really are a big boy, Colonel," he managed to get out almost conversationally.

"John. My name is John, and considering my dick is up your ass you could probably use it, you know?"

"John, shut up and fuck me already, will ya?" Rodney ordered, smirking down at his lover. "I’m pretty sure that you can get this part right, at least."

John reached up and pulled Rodney down to him, biting the other man’s lip hard enough to make him wince. Come morning Rodney’s mouth would look like it had been well and truly claimed. Maybe then that bitch Carter would keep her hands off of his scientist once she saw and got the message.

Sucking the now bruised lip into his mouth in order to sooth it, John began to thrust upwards in counterpoint to Rodney’s delicious little wiggles and squirms. It was better than good, this whole concept of man on man sex. He could definitely get addicted to it.

And then Rodney let out that mewling little whimper again; the one that meant a direct hit had been scored on his prostate. Whatever restraint John had had snapped.

Flipping them over, John had Rodney’s legs on his shoulders and he was powering into the man beneath him with as much force as he could muster before either man really knew what happened.

Rodney was panting and whimpering. His hand was wrapped around his cock, yanking on it with almost as much ferocity as John was pounding into him. It had gone from playful and hot to incendiary in mere minutes. Need was now a razor blade, slicing through them, cutting them right to the bone.

John turned his head and bit Rodney’s inner thigh enough to make him mewl that lovely noise again making John that much harder. He then laved the hurt with his tongue, making the scientist purr. It was intoxicating, thrilling, better than the first time he’d piloted an X-302, more exhilarating than the first time a puddle jumper leapt to life at his mere thoughts.

Rodney was being burned alive. The heat was incredible. He knew he’d be so damned sore in the morning he’d be walking bow legged, but he couldn’t find it in himself to care, as for sitting? Forget it. This was the best sex he’d had in his entire life. Above him John was a man possessed. He was focused totally and completely on him, Rodney McKay. That alone was a high like he’d never felt before. Rodney had never had such passion, such fire, aimed directly at him. He could quite easily become addicted to this.

However, like all things sublime, it couldn’t last. It had been too long, they’d been riding the edge too closely, and the need had been too intense. Rodney was the first one to crack, the dual stimulation of his hand on his cock and John’s cock up his ass was almost enough to fry his synapses. With an inarticulate cry, his head thrown back and eyes screwed shut; Rodney felt his cock jerk and his ass clench as he came buckets. It was the best orgasm in the history of orgasms, at least as far as he was concerned.

Rodney’s release set off a chain reaction. John had never before felt the way anal muscles constricted while a person being fucked had an orgasm. It was literally enough to make him shatter with no warning at all. With a startled cry John began to jackhammer into Rodney, his thrusts erratic as he came hard and fast into the condom.

The pistoning of his hips slowed to a stop and then John’s body began to shudder in reaction. Soon he couldn’t maintain his weight and collapsed as gently as he could onto Rodney’s prone body, still managing to illicit a startled ‘oof’ from the man below him. He was absolutely positive that his brains had finally leaked out of his ears. There was no other explanation. Definitely better than the Ramstein twins. A million times better than Chaya. Of course he really shouldn’t be surprised, after all there was only one Rodney McKay in the universe, and he belonged to John, no ifs ands or buts about it.

"Wow," John finally managed to whisper as his heart rate began to slow and resume its normal beat.

Rodney smiled rather smugly beneath John. "Yeah, it was rather wow-worthy, wasn’t it?"

"Your modesty is underwhelming, McKay. It’s just one of a dozen things I love about you," John replied, not really realizing what he’d said.

But Rodney heard. The heart that had finally resumed a normal rhythm sped up once again, this time with hope. It wasn’t a confession, it wasn’t even a conscious proclamation of affection but it was a step in the right direction. For once in his life Rodney was patient enough to let the rest come as it may. He was content to start here and work up.

"So, I really don’t have to be at work in an hour?" he finally asked with a tired yawn.

"Nope, cleared of duty for today and since it’s Friday you don’t have to report back until Monday. Whatever shall we do with three days off?" John asked, trying for all the world to look innocent, though the devilish twinkle in his eyes gave him away.

Rodney sniggered. "How do you feel about going back to school, Colonel Sheppard? I was thinking a little sex education might be in order."

"Why Dr. McKay, I do believe you read my mind!"

John couldn’t sleep. It wasn’t the weight of the new responsibilities on his shoulders nor was it on being stuck in what Rodney had dubbed the sardine can, Earth’s second-generation interstellar spacecraft, the Daedalus. It was the fact that he hadn’t been able to manage more than a quick kiss and grope with Rodney for the past fourteen days.

Sexual frustration was a bitch, especially when your bed partner was as creative and inventive as Rodney was. John’s education had definitely been thorough, and it was still ongoing, as evidenced by his ‘course reading material’ in his personal belongings. ‘The Gay Kama Sutra’ and ‘The Joy of Gay Sex’ definitely gave him food for thought... and ideas to try out.

Of course reading it without being able to implement anything until they got back to Atlantis was a lesson in torture and his left hand was no longer satisfactory in any way, shape or form. All of this left him wandering the corridors of the Daedalus at all hours of the day and night.

Walking into the mess, John saw Elizabeth Weir looking out at the stars sliding by. A quick cup of coffee and some inane chatter might help him relax. Despite the way he acted, John Sheppard really wasn’t stupid. He knew that someone with some pretty powerful strings had engineered his promotion. Bottom line, he owed Elizabeth big time for her faith and he was damned if he would disappoint her.

John also had a more personal agenda now. If anyone would go to bat for he and Rodney, if they were ever outed, it was the woman sitting across from him. She had proven herself loyal in the extreme to her friends. Thankfully he and Rodney were lucky to be counted among them. John just wished that Elizabeth could find a little happiness of her own. So what would it hurt to spend time with her in the middle of the night when he couldn’t sleep and she obviously had something on her mind? It’s what friends did for one another.

Too bad it wasn’t meant to be. Less than fifteen minutes later an airman came charging into the mess hall. There had been an accident and they were needed. Rodney, of course, was already there as were Carson and Caldwell. One of the scientists assigned to the Daedalus, Dr. Monroe, was dead and the Atlantis team had a mystery to solve. It was almost as if they were already home.

During a quiet moment John Sheppard had to wonder who he’d pissed off in his life to merit the old Chinese curse of ‘may you live in interesting times’. But then John looked into the most beautiful pair of blue eyes he’d ever seen, and listened to that piss and vinegar attitude that had won him over; this time directed at Caldwell instead of him, and wondered just who he’d have to thank when he finally kicked the bucket because he wouldn’t trade this for anything.

A quick smile, a furtive brush of fingers and then they were heading off to save the day. Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock, O’Neill and Jackson, and now Sheppard and McKay. Just like it was meant to be. Thank God he’d said yes to General O’Neill a year ago on the flight back to McMurdo. That one small word had laid the universe at his feet and gifted him with a life never meant to be boring.


  since 02-17-07


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