Author: Barb G
Rating: Good solid R
Original Story: Controlled Decent by darsynia
Notes: Rodney's side of the silence.
Failure to Launch
Rodney was terrible at names. It was partly his fault, okay, mostly his fault, but it was hard to concentrate on inconsequential things like names for people who served only as roles in Rodney’s brain. The people were hardly more important than the task they had at hand or the machines they worked on. As long as the machines were properly calibrated and the people working them were well trained and if they came to a snap of a finger or an angry point when Rodney needed them for something specific, it didn’t matter.
It was made clear to whomever he worked with that if being addressed in terms other than ‘hey, you’ when Rodney didn’t have time for a surreptitious, or not so surreptitious, glance to the federally mandated (whatever country that federal happened to be) ID badge hurt their sense of self, their sense of self should be off working with more caring scientists and not bothering Rodney.
So when he saw the way the marines’ faces glazed over as they passed in groups down the halls of Atlantis, Rodney understood where they were coming from. Sure it bothered some of the softer I’m-okay-you’re-okay sciences scientists, but they spent their lives studying plants and whatnot. Besides that, Rodney didn’t really notice the fact that they’d been passed by marines until it was pointed out to him, so he wasn’t in much of a position to throw stones to begin with. There were so many other, much more important things to keep track of.
Until Major John Sheppard.
And he knew the exact moment he saw Sheppard, too, when he was able to correctly state that there were 720 permutations possible with six symbols. It had been so off the cuff, like it was common knowledge, that McKay, for the first time, actually looked at who he was talking to. He felt the first sputtering of attraction for the tall, spiky-haired Major in front of him. Sheppard saw him too, and they’d been looking at each other ever since.
Rodney was halfway to a utility closet in one of the damaged towers from the attack when Major Sheppard ran around the corner. John was sweating, but even his damp hair seemed to defy gravity. Their eyes met, really met, and Rodney could only shake his head. You left me, he wanted to scream. So long? You started this thing, you made me look at you and see you and…care about you and all you said to me was so long?
John stopped running, just a few yards away, and although he didn’t appear to be winded, or any more winded than most people too stupid to not run when they weren’t being chased, but he put his hands on his knees and waited. Rodney stopped as well, a foot away. John looked up at him, the pain in his eyes obvious, and he shook his head. He had to, Rodney knew. It was him or the city, and he’d never have let it be the city.
That wasn’t your choice to make, Rodney wanted to scream.
But John just looked at him. The hell it wasn’t.
Rodney crossed his arms over his chest. You should have let the city burn. You should have…you should have asked me. Even unspoken, the thought broke up his insides. You should have asked me.
John nodded, and straightened up from his crouch. “I’m asking now,” he said.
That didn’t make things okay, Rodney thought, but he nodded begrudgingly. John exhaled, and nodded back. The hall they were in still had to be cleared by the structural engineers six months after the fact, and the block of rooms still needed to be reopened for use. But Rodney had his tablet with him and it made overwriting the security codes the easiest thing in the world. John didn’t speak, not through any of it, but when the door released its locks and slid open, he was the first one inside.
Sweat marked the T-shirt John wore in a V shape, the sweat had dried in his hair, which still retained its spikes. His face was flushed from the run or…or something else. He probably could have used a shave, but John was in perfect clarity. Rodney blinked, wondering if John was ever going to say something, but then realized just standing here was it.
Rodney closed his mouth. John nodded, then stripped off his shirt. He tugged at Rodney’s jacket, pushing it back and over his shoulders, trapping his hands to his side. John smiled, not the friendly hi-how’s-it-going kind of thing, but a curl to the edges of his lips that Rodney had never seen before.
John backed Rodney to the wall. Rodney fought with the sleeves of his jacket, wanting to touch the curls of hair that covered John’s chest, but the elastic of the fabric stretched without giving.
John pushed him back, his hand to Rodney’s own chest, over the thin T-shirt, and one-handedly undid Rodney’s slacks. Rodney stopped fighting with his jacket. John dropped to his knees, hard. His hand slid down Rodney’s chest and settled over Rodney’s stomach. Rodney sucked in his breath, flattening his stomach, but it no longer seemed to matter that he was there at all.
John parted his lips, taking Rodney’s already mostly hard cock in his mouth. It was hot and wet, just as Rodney thought this moment would be, but John wouldn’t look at him. His eyes were closed, his eyelashes black against his cheek. He brought up his other hand to match the one holding Rodney back. His fingers flexed, burying themselves into Rodney’s thin T-shirt, and they went from holding him back to beseeching him to do…something, but Rodney no longer knew what that was. Just being with him obviously wasn’t enough.
The blow job was mechanical. Cock + mouth x 1.3 pounds per square inch of pressure = √orgasm
He touched John’s cheek. John flinched away. Stop it, his shoulders all but said. This isn’t about that.
Rodney ignored the flinch. He put his hand over John’s shoulder. It could be, if John let it.
John pulled away again. Don’t make me choose.
Rodney stopped trying, not bothering to tell him that John shouldn’t be fooling himself into thinking he had already made his choice years ago.
Rodney came, because he had to, critical mass had been reached, and without looking back, even with his cock still hard in his shorts, John pulled himself up, wiped his mouth, and ran out of the room. Rodney heard the pounding of his feet down the hall and beyond.
Rodney had to take an extra second to pull himself together and shrug his jacket back up over his shoulders. Of course John would choose to fly. He’d choose his career, his job, his life. Rodney swallowed, and picked up his tablet.
If John ever changed his mind...
Rodney reset the security locks.
Until then, he wouldn’t ask for anything more.
Not out loud, at least.