Word Count: 736
Spoilers: Midway Tag
Legal: You know they're not mine.
Summary: "Well friends—friends don't do that. Friends like to spend time together...
Written for Challenge #13 - Valentine
Candy Heart Quotations...
The Daedalus had dropped them off hours ago. He tried to sleep – thought he could – finally having some peace and quiet after days of listening to inane verbal diarrhea, but the time spent on the jumper waiting to be rescued had only served to disrupt his internal clock. Besides, something else was gnawing at him. He had to know, had to find out if somehow he was responsible for the Wraith's ability to reach Earth.
It couldn't have been Todd, but Rodney knew he had to face the reality of that possibility. He was planted on a stool in his private lab, bleary-eyed, going through his data and security protocols, trying to find any vulnerability in his coding or hacker-proof macros.
Pausing to stretch and blink, he heard the whoosh of the door. There was only one person who'd come down here at this hour.
"There you are, McKay. Hey, I was looking for you."
Rodney didn't look up. He stiffened his back and nodded in John's direction. "So…you found me."
"So…thought you might be up for some food, a late snack – you know something besides MREs.
"Yes, well I am perfectly fine with MREs except, as you know, I keep all the good stuff in the forward section." Rodney continued to scroll through the data, still not looking at John. "Um, late snack, huh?"
"Oh, yeah, well I couldn’t find you so I went on ahead," John said, rocking on the balls of his feet.
Rodney looked at him then and frowned. "Bastard," he muttered, turning back to his screen.
"What are you doing down here anyway?"
"Avoiding you, obviously – see how you like it."
Rodney cocked his head and narrowed his eyes. "You shut yourself up in the forward section, leaving me back there with those—those—"
"Rodney, I couldn't stand it anym—"
"Oh, and I could?" Rodney snapped, but his eyes held an impotent glare.
"I almost shot myself with a stunner," John whined.
"Why didn't you?" Rodney mumbled, turning to squint at the screen.
"You just left me there for God knows how—what was it three or four days—you didn't give a damn about—"
"I thought we were friends?"
"Well friends—friends don't do that. Friends like to spend time together, they rescue each other from the living hell of being cooped up with moronic know-it-alls who talk incessantly, they don't—"
"Avoid each other?"
Rodney shot him a glance. "You know what I mean?"
"What?" He pretended to be interested in his data.
"I couldn't let you stay up there with me."
"No? Why the hell not?"
John closed the short distance between them. Standing beside Rodney, he laid a hand on his shoulder and left it there until Rodney looked up, a puzzled expression on his face. "Because I couldn't trust myself not to do this..." John bent and kissed him, not too much pressure, just drawing Rodney's lips in, then pulling back a bit. "That's why."
Rodney's eyes grew wide, his data and macros forgotten. His jaw was working, but like a bad audio sync, it took a few seconds before the words spilled out. "You—you just—you kissed me."
John nodded and kissed him again and this time Rodney kissed back. Standing, Rodney felt arms encircle his waist and he slid his own around to pull John closer. He opened when John's tongue teased his lips, letting a little whimper escape as John explored his mouth.
"Understand?" John asked between kisses.
Rodney pulled back and shook his head. "No. I mean—hell, all the more reason to—oh," he said and brushed his knuckles across John's cheek. "We need—we need to talk about this, I guess—"
John smiled and Rodney felt something cold in his other hand. He looked down at the little plastic cup of chocolate pudding. A red heart was drawn on the lid with marker. The gears of his mind clicked and whirred, searching for the meaning, the relevance. He looked to John.
"Valentine's Day," he said with a shrug. "We missed it—waiting to be rescued. Wanna be my Valentine, Rodney?"
Rodney pulled him close, hoping his kiss would be an appropriate answer.
"Sheppard?" Rodney whispered into John's mouth. "What else didn't you trust yourself not to do?""Mmm," John sighed, "thought you'd never ask."