Pairing: Rod McKay/John Sheppard (Mensa 'verse)
Disclaimer: Not mine!
Author's Notes: Pinch hitters are awesome, thank you ♥
Summary: McKay and Mrs Miller Mensa-'verse AU. Rod prepares to leave; John says goodbye. Title from Green Day.
"You utter incompetent moron," Rod spat, grabbing the tablet away from John with a glare. His eyes flicked over the numbers. "Well. Ha. Looks like I win again, Major Pain in my Ass. As soon as we reach maximum power —" he made a show of checking his watch "— in, oh, two-point-five hours, I'll be the one to save this universe. Not you. Loser."
John wanted to punch him right in his insufferable face, but the Jaffa Marines were watching. "Then go and die," he said, with as saccharine a smile as he could dredge up. "Like I care." He flipped Rod the finger and turned on his heel to limp out of the lab as quickly as he could, keeping his chin up and not meeting anyone's eyes.
"I didn't mean it" was the first thing John said when Rod snuck into his quarters during the ten o'clock shift change.
Rod raised his eyebrows and gave John one of the sweet, crooked smiles that John was going to miss when —
John swallowed hard and forced his thoughts back on track. He checked the door lock and the hallway scans, and used the backdoor program he'd built to check that Atlantis' life-signs tracking didn't show Rod here. It never had; but John had learned the hard way to never make assumptions when the lives of people he cared about were on the line.
"I know you didn't," Rod said briskly, leaning on the back of John's chair and watching him work. "We've spent seven good years convincing our Goa'uld overlords we loathe each other. It's served us well — why mess with a good thing?" He put his hands on John's shoulders and rubbed lightly. Despite everything, John wanted to lean back into that touch. "Have fun with the revolution. Kill as many of the snake bastards as you can for me."
John nodded. "We'll get Carter back, I swear. And Beckett, and Zelenka — everyone."
Rod's arms slipped around John, his chin settling on his shoulder. "You know I don't doubt you. Not after you saved Jeannie and her family."
"You saved me," John reminded him, and turned his head to give Rod a quick kiss at the corner of his mouth.
"Bed?" Rod suggested wistfully, even though it was the middle of the day.
Normally, they wouldn't take the risk. It wasn't even just about getting revenge, although they both wanted that, of course. The fate of Earth was at stake, and of the Pegasus and Milky Way galaxies. Defeating the Goa'uld required intricate and extensive planning; they agreed a long time ago that the mission took preference over whatever their relationship was.
But this was it: John was going to lose Rod, and not to the enemy — to their idiot selves in some other reality, who were threatening everything.
"Bed," John agreed, and let Rod pull him to his feet. John had to lean against him until he was sure his bad leg would take his weight; Rod rubbed his back, like everything was going to be okay.
John had met Rod in the hospital after the Battle of Antarctica. The human survivors were offered the mercy of complete healing if they agreed to serve the Goa'uld. Cameron Mitchell had been paralyzed; his gunner had been dead. But there they were, walking through the wards of the wounded as living examples: strong, healthy, dead-eyed, brainwashed, and snaked. Earth had fallen, and to a lot of people what the Goa'uld offered seemed like not such a bad deal.
One of the doctors had had an alien device that she used — John knew now — to surreptitiously test for the ATA gene. She'd sent John's results to Rod, who'd come in person to persuade John to join the resistance.
"We need you," Rod had said, leaning forward from where he was sitting next to John's bed. John had been set to tell him to fuck off — he was facing years of rehab and the possibility of amputation, while Mitchell was running up and down the stairs, flirting with the nurses. But Rod had smiled, self-deprecating, and added, "I know, it must sound like everyone just wants to use you. And... that's true. But you can either help save the world, or condemn humanity to millennia of slavery. Be a hero, or be a traitor."
"With a sales pitch like that," John had said, and the look he got from Rod had made his insides warm with embarrassment and desire.
John never told Rod that he thought he was hot at that first meeting. Rod had been the revolution's golden boy; his ego didn't need feeding back then. But now Rod had scars, too, and even a good haircut wasn't able to disguise his receding hairline. John still didn't know how he got so lucky.
"Hey, sexy," he said, leaning in for a quick hard kiss. He unzipped Rod's uniform jacket and pushed it off his shoulders, and started tugging his shirt up before Rod even had his arms free.
"Impatient much?" Rod asked, laughing at him and trying to kiss back, even with clothes in the way.
John didn't bother answering. He'd always assumed he'd lose Rod to death, torture, or enslavement, or some combination of the three. He hoped the other universe would be better, that Rod would be safe and happy. His life was going to suck. He needed these last few hours to count for something.
Rod was everything John wasn't, suave and charismatic. He managed to get John naked and stretched out on the bed without any tangling or awkwardness, and John spared a moment to wish he hadn't always been to proud to ask how Rod did that.
But then Rod was arched naked over him, kissing John like it was the end of the world, and John threaded his fingers into Rod's hair, stroked his back, cupped the curves of Rod's ass, laid claim to him with his hands and his mouth.
"What do you want?" John asked, when he was so wound up he felt he might explode from need.
Rod raised his head, eyes dark. "Can I fuck you? I know —"
"Anything," John said. "For you... anything."
Rod didn't answer, just kissed every place he could reach, and John spread his legs and took him in.
It was slow and perfect until desperation caught up to both of them, and then the kisses became gasps, and caresses became an attempt to pull their bodies even closer together. John couldn't stay still or stop himself from crying out under Rod, and when Rod stilled, shaking and coming, John's eyes flew open because what about him? But then Rod slid down and sucked John's cock into his mouth, two fingers curling up into him, and it wasn't fair that Rod was good at everything, John thought, and came shouting Rod's name, fingers tangling in his hair.
Rod got them both cleaned up, dressed, and more-or-less respectable before John's brain was fully back online, like he always did. John wondered if he'd been taking Rod for granted, all these years.
"Don't trust them," John warned, leaning in to give Rod one last kiss before they had to go — before people came looking for them, and wondered. He grabbed his leather jacket off the peg on the wall and pressed it into Rod's hands. "There are kill-pills sewn into the pocket. Just in case."
Rod frowned, then nodded, and shrugged the jacket on. "Showtime," he said, and checked the life-signs detector one last time before slipping out the door.
"Good fucking riddance," John muttered under his breath, hand still on the buttons that had sent Rod away.
"What was that?" Weir asked, her voice low and seductive, with just a hint in the reverberation to remind him that she could have him slowly dismembered for failing to keep her pleased.
John straightened, took a breath, and turned to face her, making sure to keep his eyes trained at the floor beneath her black leather boots. "Apologies for my language, ma'am. Dr. McKay was beamed into the anomaly successfully, and all data indicate that he has crossed the bridge to the other reality."
There was a long pause. John knew better to look up, but he wished he could shift his weight. His body was getting payback for his exertion earlier. Finally, Weir brought her hands together in a single clap. "Very well. Colonel Sumner will be informed. And Major?"
John tensed. "Ma'am?"
"When your success is confirmed, report for remedial off-world training. You'll be taking McKay's place on the team."
"My honor to serve," John said, rote. The words made him feel ill, but John still had his role to play. And for Rod's sake and in his memory, he'd play it perfectly, right to the end.
"I'm back," Rod said simply, and John grinned up at him from where he'd been sitting on the floor, contemplating the containment chamber and getting quietly drunk. He'd never had hallucinations from cheap beer before, but there was a first time for everything.
"Awesome," John said. Rod raised his eyebrows and then gave John's hair a fond ruffle as he crossed to lock the doors.
Hallucinations didn't do that, John was pretty sure.
With a cold, panicked flush of sobriety, he grabbed his tablet and forced his Ancient magic gene to hide Rod from all sensors and cameras, to keep him utterly, officially dead. He didn't know how — or why — Rod was back, he didn't care; he wasn't giving him up, not ever again.
Rod crossed back and sat down next to him, moving John's last can of beer out of the way. He watched John's fingers fly, and when John gave him a dirty look — it was distracting — smirked unrepentantly.
"I like having a smart boyfriend," Rod explained, and kissed John's neck, and then his cheek.
"Yeah, well," John said, and closed his eyes long enough to count to ten, because he'd been grieving and now... "I'll be your smart boyfriend if you'll be my secret weapon, okay?"
"Deal." Rod put his forehead to John's, Athosian style. God, John had missed his eyes, along with all the rest of him. "Can I have a code name and a cool car?"
John poked Rod in the stomach. "No. All you get is me."
"I can live with that," Rod said, magnanimous, and climbed into John's lap, and kissed him until he saw stars.