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Fic: Options (McKay/Sheppard, R)

Title: Options
Author: shaddyr
Recipient: nakatas_cat
Pairing:McShep
Rating: R
Disclaimer: Not mine, never was; if the boys belonged to me, they would still be on TV.
Author's Notes: some of the things she requested were:

Slash please, rating doesn't matter (but R or NC17 would be nice); McShep; happy ending; first time story; Could be romance; Love plotty fics, especially if they also focus on the team dynamic.
- I also have a strong craving for a John/Rodney/femalefromEarth story (seems to be pretty rare), first-time (if possible for all three) with the woman not knowing about stargates,


I tried really hard to incorporate all of the above into your present. It was a real stretch for me writing a female OC, and I hope that you like it.

Summary: "Don't you guys have the slightest awareness of how you are pretty much constantly in each other's orbits?"

-o-

The sun was high and hot in the clear blue sky, a light off shore wind creating the kind of perfect swells every surfer dreamed about. John Sheppard ignored the siren song of the ocean waves, riveted to the sight of Ronon holding Rodney's laptop up above his head like an older brother playing keep-away with a younger sibling's favourite toy.

"Ronon! Give that back!"

Rodney lurched to his tiptoes and made a grab for it, but Ronon just grinned and hoisted it higher.

"Dammit! Hand it OVER, you lummox!"

"No."

"Wha – ?" Rodney splutter. "What do you mean, no?"

"Just what I said. Opposite of yes."

John dug his toes into the sand as he watched the exchange, torn between laughter and the very real worry that Rodney might burst a vessel if Ronon didn't give him back his laptop. He considered intervening, but... damn. Rodney could really put some height into a jump these days. There was the added bonus of being able to surreptitiously watch his ass while he did so. Not that he had a snowball's chance of wresting his precious laptop away from their teammate if Ronon wasn't willing to let it go.

With a sigh, John forced his thoughts away from forbidden areas and decided he needed to put an end to it before things got out of hand. Rodney had that look, the one that meant he was considering some crazy plan to extract his revenge, and that would only lead to badness when Ronon inevitably kicked his ass over it. Before he could clamber to his feet, Teyla was in front of him, firmly pushing him back to the sand.

"Uh, Teyla," he started to explain, but she gave him a look of her own, the one that the entire team knew meant sit up and pay attention.

"You will take Torren," she ordered as she deposited the wriggling child in his arms. "I will deal with the children,"

He obediently took the toddler and settled him in his lap. Torren immediately grabbed for his dog tags, little fingers trying to pull off the black noise guards while John wrapped an arm around him to hold him securely in place. He watched Teyla march over to their errant teammates. "TJ, your mom is awesome," he whispered into the fine hair on the back of Torren's head.

"Ronon." Teyla's voice brooked no argument as she stood, arms crossed, calmly staring up at him. After a moment, Ronon let out a short sigh and handed the laptop over to her.

"THANK you," Rodney crowed and reached out for his laptop, only to be stymied when Teyla refused to relinquish her prize.

"Rodney. This is not time for work."

"Oh, please! What am I supposed to do while the rest of you gallivant around, courting melanoma and shark attack? I've got at least three projects-"

"Rodney. You promised that you would spend this time with us."

He stopped for a moment, flustered. "But... I am! I'm here, aren't I?"

"No, you are lost in your computer. I want you to spend time with us. With your family."

"I... " Rodney glanced over at Ronon, who stood smirking at him. "It's just that I..." he trailed off again, then looked to John for support. John grabbed one of Torren's hands and waved it at Rodney. "TJ, say hi to Uncle Grumpy Pants!"

A big grin split the toddler's face. "Unca Rawnee!" he babbled, waving his hands happily, then pitched forward, trying to scramble out of John's lap, heading straight for Rodney.

Rodney felt his mouth curling up into a smile quite against his will as he looked back at Teyla. "I didn't – I wasn't trying to – I'm sorry?"

Her face softened slightly, but her tone was firm. "I will store your laptop and be sure it is not damaged, Rodney, but you will honour your word and spend the rest of the afternoon with us."

Torren came tearing across the sand, stopping only to pick up his purple shovel and a large orange bucket almost as big as he was. He babbled as he waved the shovel around, splattering Rodney with wet sand and whacking him in the shins with the pail. Rodney huffed out a helpless laugh and felt a strange flutter in his chest and tightness in his throat.

"Now, I believe that Torren would enjoy having his uncles build a sand castle with him. That was what all these brightly coloured, plastic toys John bought are for, are they not?"



***


"Aww, he's such a cutie pie!"

John looked up from the sand wall he was working on to find a yet another woman looking adoringly at Torren. He shot Rodney a quick grin.

"That's seven," Rodney muttered under his breath in disgust, and John let out a snort before turning back to the woman. Brunette this time – last one had been a blonde, and Rodney's attempts to flirt had been a little painful to watch. John was curious to see how it would play out this time.

"Yup, he's pretty adorable," he agreed watching as Torren carefully stuck rocks and sticks in various places on his castle.

She glanced back and forth between him and Torren and then smiled. "Looks like he's got your hair," she said.

Before he could respond, Rodney jumped in. "That would only be if you could pass along genetic traits by simple exposure, which, hey! You can't!" he snapped.

Torren looked up from what he was doing when Rodney spoke. Seeing a potential new playmate, he grabbed his bucket and shovel and made his way over to her, ploughing right through the wall John had been working on.

"Help Unca John build!" he demanded, all but shoving the bucket in her hands.

John raised an eyebrow at that. TJ hadn't even noticed in any of the other girls who had stopped to moon over him. Interesting.

She laughed. "You just wrecked all of your uncle's hard work there, little man," she commented as he held the bucket imperiously out to her. She spared John and glance, and John just shrugged his shoulders while Rodney let out a huff.

"Like you don't have enough beach bunnies throwing themselves at you already, you're letting Torren reel them in," he muttered as he continued digging the moat.

John rolled his eyes. "Yeah, Rodney, that was my secret plan today – use Torren to help me get a date. Shut up and dig."

The woman snickered and plunked down on the sand beside him. "Such an insidious plot. I'm appalled! You're obviously an evil overlord in the making."

"As long as I remember to run all my plots past a 7 year old for viability, I'll eventually rule the world."

"Yes, it's very important to make sure that you have a child screen your evil plots before hand," she agreed, nodding sagely as she picked up the bucket and started to scoop up some wet sand. "So, if I'm helping you build a castle – and possibly discussing plans for world domination with you - I should at least know your name. I'm Miranda."

"John," he replied. "The 2 year old slave driver over there is Torren, and he," he indicated with a jerk of his thumb, "is Mr. Grumpy Pants."

"That's DOCTOR Grumpy Pants to you," Rodney bitched as he worked. "And John would never make it as an evil overlord, because he would be a moron and let the good guy go so he could come back to kill him later," he informed her snippily. Torren came up to him with a couple of pieces of driftwood he'd found. "Now Unca Rawnee?"

Rodney smiled at him, reaching out to ruffle his hair. "Yes, Torren, we can build the bridge now and then pour water in the moat."

"I supposed you would make a much better evil overlord?"

"Of course I would," he sniffed. "But I couldn't be bothered. I'm a genius and I have much more important things to do than take over the world."

She chuckled and turned back to John. "So, you and Mr Grumpy are kind of an unlikely pair of babysitters. How did that happen exactly?" she asked she helped John shore up the wall Torren had demolished earlier.

"Torren's mom didn't so much ask us as inform us that we were building sandcastles while she went for a swim," he said.

"And how is it that Ronon escaped this great honour?" Rodney demanded as he helped Torren secure the bridge in place with some wet sand.

"Buddy, would you rather have Ronon out there learning to surf, or over here, dumping sand on your head?"

Rodney let out a sigh. "Point," he conceded with a nod. His gazed snapped over to Miranda and he frowned. "You're still here."

"How very observant of you."

"Oh ha,ha. You slay me."

Torren carefully stepped over the moat and threw his arms around Rodney. "Put da water now, Unca Rawnee!"

"Yes, in a moment," he said, wrapping an arm around Torren in turn. He was still staring at Miranda, mouth pulled down in a bit of a frown. "I meant," he continued, "Why are you still here?"

She tilted her head to one side. "I could leave," she said evenly.

Torren start to wriggle away. "Unca Rawnee! Water!"

He studied her for a moment more, then rolled his eyes before reaching toward her and snapping his fingers. "Bucket."

She glanced over and John before looking back at Rodney."Yes. It's a bucket," she said, holding the plastic pail in her lap."Very good basic recognition skills – you really are a genius. Do you want a prize for that?"

John laughed out loud and Rodney's eyes narrowed. "Truly comedy gold. I caution you not to quit your day job. Now hand it over."

She held the pail out and Rodney snatched it from her hand, as if worried she might yank it back at the last minute. "Thank you," he said in a tone that clearly indicated anything but thanks, then took Torren's hand and lead him down to the water.

"You know, I've seen him reduce grown men to tears," John commented as he brushed sand off his hands. "You're pretty good with a comeback."

She grinned at him."I have four, smart-assed brothers who are all older than me. I learned the art of the verbal riposte at a young age.

Torren ran back up ahead of Rodney, babbling happily about the castle, the drawbridge and the water. They all watched, with Torren carefully supervising, as Rodney poured the water into the moat. It was actually wide enough to float several small toy boats. Everyone got into the act, sending the boats sailing back and forth down the moat before the water all seeped into the sand. Teyla appeared just as Rodney took Torren back to fetch another pail full.

"Mama! look!" he cried, clutching at her hand and dragging her along with them as Rodney filled the moat again.

"I see, Torren," she said as she looked over the castle. "It is a very fine fortress indeed, with high walls and a wide river to make it safe."

Teyla glanced over at Miranda, a small smile playing about her lips. "And I see that you have also made a new friend," she said.

John looked a little sheepish as he made the introductions and Rodney crossed his arms. "Hey," Rodney defended himself. "It was your son who accosted her with a pail and demanded she help build his castle! You'll have to talk to him about his recruitment methods."

Teyla laughed and turned back to watch Torren just as the moat went dry for the third time.

"More, Unca Rawnee, more!" Torren demanded as the boats all settled on the sand.

"I think we're done with the moat, TJ," Rodney said, but Torren shook his head. He grabbed Rodney's arm and tried to pull him toward the water, but lost his footing and stumbled backward, landing hard on his rear. His face screwed up in displeasure and he let out a wail.

"Hey now, buddy, it's okay," John soothed, picking him up and trying to soothe him. Torren just wriggled in his grasp and started to cry even harder. John shot Teyla a desperate look, and she began to collect Torren's toys.

"It has been a long and exciting afternoon for Torren and I am afraid that missing his nap has made him overtired," she said as she packed their things, then scooped Torren from John's arms and settled him into the stroller

Miranda smirked at McKay "Are you sure genetic traits can't be passed via exposure? Looks like your cranky rubbed off on the little guy."

Rodney's mouth fell open and he stared at her for a moment before responding, "That's ridiculous! And anyway, for all you know, I could be his dad!"

"He already called you uncle," she said. "Are you trying to tell me that you genetically passed the cranky down to the kid?"

"No! Why am I even talking to you? Go away and stop wasting my oxygen!"

John snickered, and leaned in closer to her. "I think he likes you."

Ronon showed up just as Torren's wails were reaching ear splitting volume.

"Kid needs a nap," he said succinctly.

"Oh, thank you for your timely words of wisdom," Rodney snarked. "We'd have been at a loss without you."

Ronon just blinked, then shook his head, whipping his dreads around hard enough to nail Rodney with a spray of water.

"Oh, very mature!" Rodney grumbled, wiping the salty spray from his face.

John ignored the byplay and helped Teyla pack the sand toys into the stroller. "I was going to suggest getting something to eat, but TJ looks like he's melting down."

Teyla nodded. "It has been a lovely afternoon. I thank you for allowing me to have a little time to swim and relax while you entertained Torren, but we must return home. You and Rodney need not accompany me – I am quite able to make my way alone."

John waffled, but Teyla placed her hands on his shoulders and leaned forward. With a sigh, he relaxed, resting his hands on her waist as he lowered his forehead to touch hers.

"Enjoy the rest of your day. Get to know your new friend."

He could feel the blush blooming on his cheeks as Teyla pulled back and smiled up at him before turning to the stroller and heading back to the pick-up point for those heading back to Atlantis.

"She's okay to get back?" Rodney asked, looking a little worried, and John had to smile. Teyla could handle Wraith and Bola Kai – walking a few blocks in San Francisco was really nothing compared to that.

It was Ronon who answered. "She can kick my ass, McKay. She's fine." Then he caught John's eye. "Who's she?" he asked, indicating Miranda with the point of his chin.

She smiled at him, answering before John could say anything."She is someone who really would have loved to see you dump wet sand on Rodney's head."

Ronon flashed a grin. "I could do that."

"What? No!" Rodney yelped. "Sheppard!"

John tried to hold back a snicker and failed. "Ronon. Not now."

"Not now? What is this not now? Not ever!" He glared at Miranda. "Clearly, Torren is a very poor judge of character!"

"I dunno," she disagreed. "He seems to like you."

"With a few notable exceptions."

John attempted to redirect the conversation. "So, I was thinking that maybe we could get something to eat-"

"Oh my god, yes, I'm starving!" Rodney agreed, and started to pack up his things, gleefully grabbing the laptop Teyla had placed on his towel as she was packing up Torren's things. "And I can check my email!"

John rolled his eyes and glanced over at Ronon. "You in the mood for grub?"

"Yeah, but I gotta meet Amelia," he said as he slung his towel over his shoulder. "We're going to the Temple tonight."

Rodney looked puzzled. "I didn't know Amelia was religious."

Miranda burst out laughing and Rodney scowled. "What's so funny?"

"It's a nightclub," she gasped out. "So very not religious," she managed over the giggles. "Unless you're fanatical about hip-hop."

Rodney looked horrified by the idea, while John was just somewhat dubious. "Uhm, Enjoy yourself?" he said. "Somehow, I would have pictured you in a mosh pit rather than some club dance floor."

Ronon shrugged. "She said there would be loud music."

"Yes, there will be that," Miranda agreed.

Ronon grunted, gave a little nod and walked away, leaving the three of them standing on the beach. They looked at each other, and the moment grew awkward.

"Well, it's been nice-"

John cut her off. "Let us buy you dinner."

"What?" Rodney squawked.

She shook her head. "Thanks, but I think Doctor Grumpy has had about all of me he can take."

Rodney's chin went up. "Are you implying that you think I can't handle you?"

Her lips curled into a devilish smirk. "Are you implying you think you can?"

John laughed helplessly."Can you both stop arguing long enough to pick a restaurant?"



***

They walked for a while, debating the merits of several restaurants they passed before they finally found one Rodney and Miranda could both agree on. They settled on an eclectic little restaurant with a funky atmosphere. After they placed their orders, they sat back to wait. Miranda and Rodney verbally sparred on almost every topic that came up, from music –

"Johnny Cash? You must be joking!"

"Rodney, do not dis the Man in Black," John said.

Miranda perked up. "You like Cash too?"

"Oh, god. Someone kill me now!"

- to sports –

"Seriously, college football is the best game on the planet!"

Rodney scowled at her over his beer. "Were you dropped on your head as a child?"

- until they unexpectedly discovered a common ground while waiting for the appetizers to appear.

"I swear, I am going to pass out from manly hunger," Rodney complained.

John rolled his eyes. "Suck it up, Rodney, you've survived worse."

"That's not the point," he griped. "You always do that, just brush it off. Hypoglycaemia is serious you know!"

John opened his mouth, about to toss of a witty comment when Miranda interrupted.

"I know what you mean," she agreed. "People acts like it's no big deal, and when you try to explain that no, it really is, and you really need to eat something before you *pass out*, they all think you're exaggerating. Until you actually do pass out! And then, no one can understand why you don't take better care of yourself!

"Exactly!" Rodney exclaimed. "When I'm working, I always make sure I have an extra power bar on me, just in case."

"Or an extra three," John needled. Rodney made a face.

Miranda just nodded. "It's not a bad idea. I was up late one night working on a paper regarding a best-linear unbiased prediction including a trait-specific relationship matrix-"

"Wait, wait!" Rodney interrupted. "Do you mean to say – are you a geneticist?"

She sat back in her chair, nonplussed. "Uhm. Yeah?"

He made a sound of disgust. "Soft sciences!"

Miranda narrowed her eyes and stared at him. "What about them?"

"Rodney," John warned.

"What?" he snapped. "Geneticists! Biologists! Botanists! It's all squishy science with a voodoo base!"

John covered his face with one hand.

"Well, I may practice voodoo, but it's better than being an uptight, narrow minded physics nerd with my head in the clouds and slide rule shoved up my ass."

John's head snapped up, and he openly stared as Miranda went back to eating her meal, a satisfied look on her face. He hazarded a glance at Rodney, expecting rage and fury. Instead, after a tense moment, Rodney just let out a dismissive snort and went back to his dinner.

John realized that for the first time in a long while, he was seriously attracted to a woman. It just figured that she was a female version of McKay.



****


"You're not from around here," she remarked to Rodney as they lingered over a piece of Chocolate Decadence cake.

"What gave it away?" he asked before shovelling in another mouthful and letting out a moan of pleasure.

She watched him eat the cake, mouth curling into an amused smile. "Besides the fact you have no idea what the Temple is and you have a Canuck accent?"

"I don't have an accent!"

"You totally do. It's cute, kinda like the way you verbally orgasm over chocolate."

John choked on his coffee. Rodney opened his mouth, but no sound came out.

"Oooh! Is THAT all it takes to shut you down?" she crowed. "Sweet! And so easy, because you really are cute, even though you're a raging asshole. Actually, I think that's part of what makes you so attractive."

John couldn't help but laugh even as he felt tendrils of jealousy spike through him. Rodney was very attractive, all pink and flustered looking and John really needed to stop thinking about things like that. With a conscious effort he turned to smile at Miranda. "So now what?" he asked.

Rodney finally found his voice. "Well,*I'm* not going to the Temple," he declared. "Or any other nightclub, dance joint or anything like one. So don't even suggest it."

Miranda studied the fingernails of her right hand. "Weeeell, I don't know what you guys usually do for fun, but I need to head over to Isotope before it closes to pick up a graphic novel I've been waiting for. Unless that's too geeky for you guys.

"The comic store?" John asked at the same moment Rodney piped in with, "Graphic novels?"

"I see we have a unanimous decision."


****


When they first reached the store, John and Rodney did they male version of clutching each other and jumping up and down with glee; crazy grins followed by a shoulder bump before they both dove into to discover all the riches the store held.

Miranda watched them dart hither and yon, each calling for the other when they found an interesting treasure to share, or a particularly amazing piece of artwork. They debated the merits of various villains and superheroes as they perused titles, and John made increasingly outlandish comments in response to everything Rodney said. From what she could see, the goal seemed to be whipping Rodney into a frothing rage, though so far, he'd only achieved blistering sarcasm.

She let out a sigh and she clutched her new book. They were both hot. They were both sexy as hell in their own unique ways. First, there was John, with that crazy hair and charming smile, and how adorable he'd been building a sand castle with little Torren – very sexy and so very sweet. He'd been a gentleman and a flirt, in just the right proportion, and she got the sense he could be persuaded into something more.

But then there was Rodney. She wasn't sure if she wanted to throttle him or slam him up against the wall and kiss the hell out of him. Possibly both. She had a feeling that sex with him would be explosive, all consuming and extremely satisfying, as long as she could keep from strangling him for all the infuriating things he'd likely say due to his clear lack of a mouth/brain filter.

The thing that was confusing her, the thing that had held her back from coming on any stronger to either one of them though, was the sense that they weren't just competing with each other by flirting with her – she felt like she was competing with them. On the beach, she'd initially assumed they were a couple, only to decide she must have been wrong. Now, she wasn't sure anymore. She only knew one way to find out for sure.

"So, hey," she said, interrupting the current argument. They turned to her and waited. "I was just wondering – are you guys together?"

John's mouth fell open but nothing came out. Rodney cocked his head to one side. "Together? You mean like a couple?"

She nodded, and he chuckled, but it sounded a little forced. "Uh, no. We're just friends. We told you earlier, we work together, Besides, John's as straight as an arrow."

John made a strangled sound, and Rodney looked askance at him. "What, Colonel I-Flirt-with-Any-Female-with-a-Heartbeat?

"Hey, you're the one who has been singing the praises of Sam Carter since I've known you. And let's not forget Katie Brown-"

"Oh, could we, please?" Rodney interjected. "I should have known better than to date a botanist! What was I thinking?"

Miranda held up a hand. "Okay, okay, I was just wondering," she explained. "I mean, you guys have a real couple-y vibe, but you both talked like you were straight. Now that I've been hanging out with you for a few hours, it's really hard to tell since all you seem to do is flirt with each other."

"What?" Rodney exclaimed. "I do not flirt with him!"

"Me neither," John agreed after a moment's delay.

She laughed out loud. "Wow, you guys are either yanking my chain or both so deeply in the closet you're going to need a backhoe to dig you out."

"You are making even less sense now than you have for the rest of the day," Rodney snapped. "What the hell are you talking about?"

She cocked her head to one side, eyes narrowing as she studied him. "Based on all your flirting, I had you pegged as maybe straight, but more likely bi. John I figured was possibly bi, but more likely gay. The two of you have been flirting with each other as much as you've been flirting with me all afternoon. Are you trying to tell me that the glances, the leaning and the secretive little smiles are just the behaviour of two buddies? Don't you guys have the slightest awareness of how you are pretty much constantly in each other's orbits?"

The look on Rodney's face was a little chagrined, and she felt a sense of vindication at knowing she'd hit the nail on the head. John's face was a different story. He looked cornered and scared, and she realized that she was probably right about him too, but he might not be ready, or willing, to acknowledge it.

"I'm going to go buy this now," she announced, choosing to derail the current conversations by virtue of starting a new one. "And then I'm going to go get a cup of coffee."

"Coffee sounds good," John agreed, and the relief in his voice was evident, but she saw the speculative look in Rodney's eyes before she turned to make her way to the counter.



***

When they left the store, Miranda wordlessly led them to a little coffee shop about a block away. After spending ten minutes in life just to get their coffees, Rodney spent an additional five arguing with the barista over exactly how he wanted his prepared. After he took the first sip, his eyes glazed over and he got back into the line to buy 5 pounds of whole coffee beans.

"Rodney's a little particular about his coffee," John explained with a grin as he and Miranda sipped their drinks, waiting for him. "Sometimes we don't get good coffee on the base, so when he finds some, he tends to stockpile."

She glanced over at him. "Base?"

He shot her a look. "Yes," he replied, without elaborating.

She nodded slowly. "Okay. That makes more sense now."

He raised an eyebrow, inviting her to explain.

"Just, I get it why it made you uncomfortable when I asked."

He returned his gaze to Rodney, lifting his cup again to take a drink.

She pursed her lips, then spoke again."I know you feel you can't say anything, but I'm reasonably certain that you're interested in being more than just buddies with Rodney. And I'm pretty sure that he's into you, too, which I think you probably already realize, whether you're willing to admit it or not."

He sighed. "We're going to be redeployed soon. We're going back to a dangerous place where anything can happen and we have to be on our toes all the time. It's hard enough when... strong attachments... make being impartial difficult. Anything more than that, any more intimate – friendships – would only complicate things and make them even more difficult. It's better this way."

"It sounds like you're trying hard to convince yourself that's true," she said, before taking another sip of her own coffee. "But you know what I think? I think you already know, somewhere inside you, that any impartiality you ever had toward Rodney went out the window a long time ago. I don't see how denying you both something that you really want is going to do anything but make you both miserable."

Rodney finally got through the line and made his way back over to them, saving John from having to respond. He flashed the bag full of coffee at them

She grinned at him. "So, the two of you gentlemen willing to walk me home?"


*****


Shadows stretched out behind them as they walked, the heat of the day fading into the cool of the approaching evening. They were all quiet, and a nervous apprehension filled the space between them. Miranda slowly came to a halt in front of a three story walk up.

"So," she said."This is me."

John smiled and gave her a little half bow. "Happy to have seen you home safe."

She ducked her head, then looked up at him from through her eyelashes. "And do I get a goodnight kiss too?" she asked.

He gave her a little smirk. "I think that could be arranged."

Rodney looked down at the bag he was carrying and turned away slightly, but he couldn't keep himself from looking when John moved in to give Miranda a kiss. It started by John cupping her face with one hand, then leaning forward to drop a simple kiss on her lips, but it quickly morphed into something more. Miranda's arms snaked around John, one wrapping around his waist, her free hand sliding up into his hair, holding him firmly in place as she surged up against him. John staggered slightly, his other arm reflexively catching at her shoulder, trying to hold her still.

Rodney felt his mouth go dry, lust and jealousy vying for top spot as he watched. John was hot, and Miranda was hot, and together they were scorching and he wasn't sure which one of them he wanted more at this point, but the fact that he couldn't have either one and now had to watch this display was like bitter acid in his stomach.

They finally broke apart, John's hair looking even more mussed than usual, colour high in his cheeks as he stepped back. Rodney found his eyes glancing down and, yup, John was hard. Not really surprising because Miranda was gorgeous, but still. There was only one way he could see this ending.

"I can just, you know, find my way back and see you later-"

"I don't think so," Miranda informed him, taking a few steps forward to close the distance between them.

"What?

"You," she said pointedly as she stopped right in front of him, toe to toe, "Owe me a goodnight kiss as well."

Rodney glanced at John and then back at her. "I, uh, I don't understand."

"And here I thought you were a genius," she mocked as she proceeded to wrap herself around him. Her hands slid up into his hair, and she pulled his head to hers, kissing him soft and slow. Her tongue slipped past his lips to tangle with his, eliciting a whimper as she wrapped one leg around his waist and began rocking against his rapidly growing erection.

"Oh, god!" he gasped into her mouth, his hands clutching her as she kissed him and, oh jesus,, there was a musky flavour in her mouth that had to be John, and she was kissing him and John was there at the same time. A shudder went through him, and he moaned.

Eventually she pulled back, dropping a few scattered kisses on his chin and the corner of his mouth before pulling back entirely. She looked mussed, lips swollen, eyes wide and dark with desire. He risked a quick glance over Miranda's shoulder at John and found that he'd been watching them just like Rodney had. And the hard on was still in evidence.

Miranda grabbed his hands and started to walk backwards, looking over her shoulder at John. John started to move, but she reached behind her to grab his arm and hold him in place long enough to press her body up against him, his chest to her back. Then she pulled Rodney flush against her front, so they stood, all three, pressed right up against each other.

"So here's the thing," she confessed, panting slightly, body trembling so much they could both feel it. "I think you're both incredibly sexy, and I'd really like to kiss both of you a lot more. But even more than that, I'd really like to watch you kiss each other."

John turned his face away as he stammered. "I can't – look, I told you, Rodney and I, we have to work together and – "

"John?" Rodney asked, hesitant and unsure, unconsciously moving his hand to rub gentle circles on John's back.

"Yeah?"

"Are you – I mean, do you –want to kiss me?"

He felt John's back tense. "Rodney, what I want doesn't matter! I can't!" he said harshly, starting to pull away

Rodney reached out and caught John's shoulder. "That's not what I asked. Do you want to?"

He could see the tension in John's jaw, hear it in his voice. Rodney let his hand slide down John's arm to take his hand. He felt him twitch at the contact, but he didn't pull away. Rodney swallowed thickly.

"I want you to. And I want to kiss you," he confessed.

John let out a low, pained groan, eyes closing, and Rodney couldn't help himself. He leaned in over Miranda's shoulder and dropped chaste kiss on John's lips, the corner of his mouth, and his neck, Rodney looked up just in time to see John's eyes snap open, full of intent and desire, before John's mouth crashed down on his, hard, hot and wet.

"Oh, my god," Miranda gasped from between them, and they pulled apart, both smiling a little self conscious and a lot turned on.

"Alright, I can die happy now," she breathed, extricating herself from between them to go unlock the door. She placed her hand on the doorknob, then turned back to face them. "There are two options here," she said catching John's eyes. "One, you can go back to your base and try to figure this thing out for yourselves." She turned the knob and pushed the door open, stepping just inside, and held the door open wide. "Or, two, you could come in. Spend a little time with me while you try to figure this thing out before you go back. Personally, I'd vote for option two."

Rodney looked at John. He was incredibly sexy, and all mussed up from kissing, but was also nervous and unsure, and Rodney had a feeling if they went back now, this would all be swept under the rug. John would treat it as an aberration, a mistake to be disregarded and forgotten. He took a step toward the door, then reached back and held his hand out to John.

John stared for what felt like forever, and for a minute, Rodney was afraid he was going to back out and walk away. Then slowly, every slowly, John finally reached out and took Rodney's hand.

"Okay," he breathed. "Okay."

Comments

( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
nakatas_cat
Dec. 18th, 2011 09:24 pm (UTC)
Yay! McShep + female from Earth! Thank you so much, Secret Santa! Wishes do come true!

This was really really lovely! The team interactions were so adorable and cute. I just love to read about the four of them showing how much they all mean to each other in their unique ways. And seriously, John + Rodney + Torren = made of win! The picture of John with Torren on his lap, so so cute!

And Miranda. :D What an incredible woman! Loved how she stood up to Rodney and that John thought of her as a female McKay and that they had same interests (go Johnny Cash!).

Also loved that you changed POVs. Showed the feelings (the boys' pining! yay!) they had (or were developing) for each other nicely.

And the end was just really perfect. How Miranda got both boys hot and bothered both because of herself and because of John's and Rodney's attraction towards one another. Would have loved to read how everything progresses inside but I get why you ended it right there.

I'm so happy right now! I didn't really expect that 'my' author would write me this particular kind of story and pairing so you really exceeded my expectations here! Thank you very much, dear Santa!

You think I could wheedle you into writing a sequel? ;) Maybe with Miranda finding out about the boys' base and so? ;)

Oh, and one more thing: I can totally picture Ronon in a mosh pit as well but on a hip-hop dance floor? Not so much. Maybe Amelia will have to show him other locations next time. ;)
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:13 pm (UTC)
I am so glad that you enjoyed your story! I love the boys, but was nervous about adding an unknown girl. But! It was your Christmas Present! It's nice to actually get what you want. In the end, I really liked Miranda because she's a smart ass. So by default, John would have to like her too. And Rodney? Well, you know Rodney. He'd like her in spite of himself.

I feel I must apologize for the errors, and promise to re-post a cleaned up version with the mistakes removed sometime in the near future.

You think I could wheedle you into writing a sequel? ;) Maybe with Miranda finding out about the boys' base and so? ;)

Uh... I can't make any promises, but I do have some thoughts floating around in the back of my brain. So. Yeah. I'll see if anything percolates.

I can totally picture Ronon in a mosh pit as well but on a hip-hop dance floor? Not so much.

I know! It's all Amelia's fault. In my head, Ronon ends up telling John that Earth dancing is weird, and John laughing and promising to take him somewhere that would be more his speed and then end up at some hard rock/metal/head banger bar, even though that's not John's thing, and Ronon just throws himself into the melee with glee and abandon.

Edited at 2012-01-02 09:14 pm (UTC)
nakatas_cat
Jan. 3rd, 2012 10:12 pm (UTC)
You did an awesome job! Thank you again! I really really loved my gift fic!

I'd appreciate it if you gave a holler in case you do write a sequel. ;D
panisdead
Dec. 19th, 2011 01:21 am (UTC)
This is a sexy execution of a classic scenario. Nice work!
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:14 pm (UTC)
Thank you kindly! I am happy that you enjoyed!
fanficfan123
Dec. 19th, 2011 07:52 am (UTC)
Sexy and sweet--the sugar from Miranda's honest and open-hearted emotions and responses as well as the 'family' interactions with Toren, Teyla, and Ronon. John's translating and enumerating Rodney's habits and responses to Miranda on the beach, coffee shop and bookstore (and the guys' delighted spree there), and restaurant are other winning features here.
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:16 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you liked the "family" time with the team on the beach. That could have been a little vignette story all by itself.

I'm happy you enjoyed it!
fanficfan123
Jan. 4th, 2012 11:34 pm (UTC)
You're most welcome.
taste_is_sweet
Dec. 19th, 2011 09:46 pm (UTC)
Great story. I liked Miranda a lot, and I was especially happy that she wanted both guys equally. That line about Rodney being a raging asshole had me lol. It's so true! And yet he's awesome anyway!

I loved the beginning with Rodney, Ronon, Teyla and the laptop.
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:16 pm (UTC)
LOL! It's one of Rodney's most endearing qualities, as far as I'm concerned.

Glad to hear that you enjoyed it!
scififreak
Dec. 21st, 2011 03:17 am (UTC)
Okay, I LOVE your original character! Miranda is so awesome! Rodney and John would be crazy not to take her up on her offer of a threesome! I really would kind of love it if you wrote a sequel where Miranda gets offered the Stargate program, unbeknownst to John and Rodney, and they run into her at the SGC or something. I'm sure she would suggest they pick right back up where they left off. ;)
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:20 pm (UTC)
I am so delighted that you liked Miranda! It just makes sense that John would like her, since she's pretty much a female version of McKay with more tact and less obvious asshole behaviours. She's quite capable of reducing people she considers idiots to tears, too. :)

I do have some thoughts in my mind for the possibility of her ending up with the SGC somehow, but... yeah. We shall see.

I am glad you enjoyed it!
michelel72
Dec. 22nd, 2011 03:58 am (UTC)
I really like these three together.
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:20 pm (UTC)
Yay! I'm glad you enjoyed it!
salixbabylon
Dec. 28th, 2011 07:25 pm (UTC)
I vote for option #2 as well! Really nicely done - I didn't often read anything other than McShep or OT4, but this was amazingly real and believable. :)
shaddyr
Jan. 2nd, 2012 09:21 pm (UTC)
Thanks for giving my story a try! I'm glad that you enjoyed it!
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )

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