Figuring Out the Situation

by The Grrrl

Title: Figuring Out the Situation

Author: The Grrrl

Author's email:

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Archive: Ask first.

Fandom: Stargate Atlantis

Pairing: Sheppard/McKay

Rating: NC-17

Author's notes: Originally posted to the sga_flashfic LJ community, in response to the "Culture Clash" Challenge. Thank you to wickdzoot and chelle for the beta! Any remaining goofs are mine entirely.

"No, Major, really, I'm enjoying this."


"Face it, how many opportunities do I get to be locked up in a giant birdcage on some strange Jungle-World planet?" Rodney struck a bar with the heel of his hand, then turned and glared, the corners of his mouth twisted downward. "I just can't thank you enough."

It did look like a birdcage, John thought, with the high ceiling and solid wooden bars. All that was missing was a perch. "It's not like I'm enjoying myself either," he pointed out.

Rodney crossed over to him and sat on the floor, crossing his legs and then clasping his hands demurely in his lap. "Oh, and the stark naked aspect? Adds that extra-special surreal touch."

"Can the sarcasm. It's not helping any, okay?" John drew his knees up, then uncomfortable with the dangling, thought better of it and crossed his legs, too. Despite the still, humid air, the cage felt uncomfortably drafty.

"I'm not being sarcastic to be helpful. I'm doing it because it's what I do when I've been stripped naked and locked up naked in a cage." Rodney told him.

"Well, it's not exactly productive."

"Thank you. I wasn't aware of that fact. It's just that this wasn't in the job description. "

John felt like pointing out that Rodney hadn't been in his job description either. "Listen, I'm sure Teyla and Ford realized something was wrong when we didn't check in, and they'll be by any minute to free us." The moment he finished speaking, there was a rustling in the dense, fern-like bushes to their left. He pointed and nodded smugly, but, to his dismay, two native women emerged, eyeing them thoughtfully.

Rodney leaned close, anger apparently forgotten. "What the hell is this?" he asked softly. "I don't get it, this is the third time someone's come over and just looked at us. Which, granted, is preferable to beating or torturing us, but still--"

"I don't know," John whispered back. "It's--it's unsettling. Like we're on display or something. And they never talk to us." He raised a hand to wave at their visitors, but Rodney grabbed his arm and pulled it back down.

"Don't," Rodney said sharply. "This is how we got into trouble in the first place."

"I keep telling you, I didn't do anything." All he had done was smile pleasantly and wave while saying 'hello' to the first group of Peiran women they had come across.

The women came closer, faces thoughtful. They were unarmed, and didn't appear threatening, but John decided to play it safe and stare down at his feet, his naked feet, naked as the rest of him. Rodney kept hold of his arm, fingers curled around his bicep. While the women spoke quietly to one another, in that strange English derivation that was difficult to comprehend, John stole a glance at Rodney.

Rodney returned it with a sidelong look from under his lashes. John could read the concern there, could see it in the tenseness of his body. John was uneasy, too, but no harm had been done to them. Their accommodations, while spartan, were livable-- there was a small bathroom in one corner, closed in on three sides, and fresh running water. No one had tried to kill them. Yet.

It was all just a simple misunderstanding. Teyla would straighten things out.

He put his hand over Rodney's and squeezed.

The women moved off.

Rodney let out a pent-up breath. "Thank god. That just weirds me out."

"You too, huh?" John asked.

Rodney removed his hand and leaned back on his arms, tilting his head back, frowning up at the treetops. "Teyla and Ford can show up any time now. I think I'm ready to head back, and call it a day."

"That sounds like a great idea." John said, still unable to look away from the wide chest, small, tight nipples, and solid, muscular legs. Naked suited Rodney, but then John had always thought so, from the first glorious moment that Rodney was naked in his bed. Unbelievable as it was, that they had actually managed to get there, crossing the minefield of emotions to connect somewhere in the middle. He wasn't exactly sure why Rodney had come to him that first night, whether he was drawn by some desperate need for touch and comfort, or if it was something more.

All he knew was that he wished they were safe in his room right now, because Rodney's skin was moist and glowing with sweat and his shoulders would feel slick and silky to the touch. The furrow would fade from Rodney's brow, he would relax into John's touch with a blissful sigh and make John feel as though he could conquer the galaxy.

Instead of being locked up and imprisoned on one of its planets. Helpless. John hated feeling helpless, absolutely hated it.

Another rustle. Rodney straightened up. "What was that?"

This time a man came out, the first man they had seen since stepping onto the planet. He was tall and dark, much like the women, although dressed more simply. He carried two trays, and something smelled very, very good.

"Barbecue?" John asked, sniffing the air. Okay, so maybe the planet had something going for it after all.

Rodney brightened. "At least they're not into starving their prisoners to death."

As the man approached, John rose to his feet and called out to him. "Excuse me."

The man did not meet their eyes, but simply slid the two boards, laden with food, through a slot on the floor.

"Hey, you, do you understand me? Can you tell us why we're in here? Is there anyone we can talk to about this?" John hurried toward him, but he might as well as been invisible, because the man ignored him, backing away before turning and disappearing into the jungle.

"John, don't bother, you'll only make things worse." Rodney crouched next to the food, regarding it carefully.

"Why are you so sure this is all my fault?" John was annoyed, and yet he couldn't help admiring the curve of Rodney's ass. He had never realized crouching could be so appealing. Rodney really should be naked all the time.

"Because, one minute you were smiling that smile and saying 'hello' to that well-dressed woman, the one adorned with all these gold trinkets. The next thing we knew, we were being told at gunpoint to take our clothes off and then hustled into a nearby cage." Rodney picked up a long, green vegetable between his thumb and forefinger and sniffed at it. "Not that being undressed at gunpoint doesn't have intriguing possibilities, if it were you holding the gun--"

John blinked, wondering if he had heard Rodney correctly. "Really?"

Rodney's head jerked up. "Did I actually say that last bit out loud?"

"Yes, Rodney, you did." John began to smile. "Gunpoint? Really? That's...different."

"Well, that's neither here nor there." Rodney's face grew flushed as he picked at lump of charred meat. "I think it's beef. Sort of."

"Gunpoint," John repeated. Definitely interesting. "So tell me, am I naked, too?"

"Do we have to talk about this now?"

Despite the plaintive note in Rodney's voice, John continued, intrigued. "P90 or Beretta?"

Rodney hesitated. "Beretta," he answered with quick grin. "It's just a silly little fantasy." He stared at John's chest, then his eyes flicked downward, past John's stomach to John's thickening cock. "Oh, unless you--"

"I like it," John said quickly, in case Rodney missed the obvious. Rodney had fantasies about him. Kinky fantasies. He might not ever stop smiling.

"Eat your dinner," Rodney said, shoving a tray toward him. Despite his abrupt words, he looked pleased.


"In the morning, then," John said. "I'm sure they'll be by in the morning to rescue us." Almost pitch black, and the only response John heard was the sound of crickets. "Rodney?"

"Of course," came the weary response from beside him.

"Teyla's probably negotiating with them right now. Over a late dinner."

"Absolutely." Rodney shifted positions, wrapping his arms around his knees. "They're sitting on soft cushions, sipping coffee and making polite conversation right this very minute."

John nodded to himself. "Better than coming in with guns blazing."

"Yes. Someone could get hurt that way."

Rodney grew quiet again, a shadowy figure resting his chin on his forearm. "Why don't you get some sleep," John finally said.

"I'm not tired. You do know I don't really blame you for this," Rodney told him. "I was just blowing off steam before. Sometimes I just run off at the mouth--I've never been too good with any kind of emotional restraint."

"I know," John said. He refrained from commenting that it was an understatement, that Rodney's emotional state was fascinatingly wild and wooly at the best of times. He reached out in the dark, patting Rodney's leg. "We're both just frustrated. It's a pretty freaky situation."

"You could say that."

John could hear the smile in Rodney's voice. Then something brushed against his shoulder, something soft and wet. "What are you doing?" John asked.

Rodney licked his shoulder again. "I thought we could make the best of a freaky situation?"

"You want to do it here? Now?"

"You're naked. You're sweaty." Tongue traveling across John's shoulder, a gentle nuzzling on the side of John's neck. "You really smell," Rodney continued. "And it's dark. What else would I possibly want to do?"

John's heart beat faster and all the breath seemed to leave his lungs as Rodney leaned against him, body warm and sticky. "You want to have sex with me in a cage in the middle of a jungle?"

"It suppose it sounds a little weird when you put it that way, but yes, I do, and I'll bet you do, too."

By way of answer, John cupped a hand around Rodney's neck and pulled his face close. He kissed Rodney's smile, tasting the salt on his lips. Maybe Rodney was a little weird, but Rodney was never boring and Rodney wanted him. John was smart enough to never, ever argue with that.

Rodney made a small noise, then took John's hand and placed it on his cock. It was hard and stiff and it pulsed against John's palm when he squeezed it. Rodney shifted closer, hand slipping between John's legs. John pulled at his hips. "Come here," he said, pulling Rodney until he was straddling John's lap, his ass cradled between John's thighs.

"Okay, this works," Rodney said, voice breathless with excitement, just the way John liked it.

"It does, doesn't it?" John wrapped an arm around Rodney's waist and breathed deep. Rodney smelled, too, of sweat and earth and passion. Pressing his face into Rodney's neck, John mouthed Rodney's throat, tasting his skin. Chest to chest, stomach to stomach, all wonderfully hot and sweaty. He stroked Rodney's cock, feeling it's heaviness, skin stretched tight until it was full and smooth like satin. Rodney's breath caught in a soft moan, and then his hand was moving on John's cock, their knuckles bumping together as they stroked, fast and hard, in the secret darkness of another world.

It didn't matter where they were, because this, this was his Rodney, the one who shuddered against him in the night. And would make John respond with exploring hands and a hungry mouth, openly needing and wanting in return. He loved the way Rodney met him head on, encouraging him, challenging him to let go, to simply feel, and to be.

"Oh, right, right," Rodney suddenly whispered, as if he had a spectacular new insight. His thighs gripped John's hips as he rocked into John's hand, cock rigid and straining. "Just like that, John--just like--oh--" Rodney arched his back and came, all over John's stomach.

The feel of Rodney coming thrilled John, the way his body moved, the heat and the power of it. He wished he could see the expression on Rodney's face, the look of wonder mixed in with sheer pleasure but then Rodney was swiping his hand over John's wet stomach, lubricating his hand to curling his come-slicked fingers around John's cock again and John's brain went blank. He tilted his head up for a messy, enthusiastic kiss, fingers sliding through Rodney's hair and he couldn't hold back anymore. Rodney drove him crazy in so many ways, but this was the best way, the very best--he was going to come--

"Rodney," he said, and let it fly, sensations overwhelming him, and he was only vaguely aware of Rodney holding him and kissing him as he shook through it.

When he came back down to earth, he rested his head on Rodney's shoulder, boneless and blissful. "Oh, man," he panted, mind still hazy.

"Okay, now we're really messy," Rodney said.

His stomach was dripping with sweat and come and John felt wonderful, because Rodney was wonderful. "Mmmm, I don't care, that was a really good idea."

"You think so?" Rodney sounded amused. His fingers glided along the back of John's neck.

"Yes, Rodney. You know, being with you is really, really--um, great," John admitted carefully. "And I'm not just talking about sex, although that's really great, too."

"Really?" Rodney drew a deep breath. "So, is that anything like being in love? Because I love you, but I wasn't going to say anything, because you don't seem--you know, you have the cool, laidback flyboy mentality and all and I didn't know how you'd feel about things between us getting that serious, it's probably not the sort of thing you do." He spoke quickly, with forced casualness, but his arms were still around John, and John could feel his body grow tense.

Startled, John said, "Yes, it's just like love. As a matter of fact, it is love and it is the kind of thing I do." He hadn't known that Rodney felt that way about him. Rodney had surprised him again. Rodney always surprised him.

John liked surprises almost as much as he liked going fast. Especially good surprises.

Warm breath against his cheek as Rodney searched for his lips. "Good," he said softly, before kissing John.



John was pleased to find that he was correct; they were rescued in the morning. Quietly, without guns or a fuss, by Elizabeth, Teyla, and a female marine named Jones who carried in their clothes.

John was never so happy to see a pile of clothing before in his life.

"Rescue?" Elizabeth asked. She kept her eyes on John's face, and John admired her composure. "Not exactly. Actually, we had to buy you both."

"What? You purchased us? What the hell kind of crazy planet is this?" Rodney asked, snatching his bundle of clothes.

"A planet where it is forbidden for most men to speak directly with women of a certain standing," Teyla explained. "I had not been aware of this--my people knew little of this world and its culture."

"Oh, well, now we do." John thought her serene expression looked a little forced. If he didn't know better, he'd think she was holding back laughter.

"Fortunately," Elizabeth added, "you were both on sale, and didn't cost us much. A real bargain, as they explained it. Just some medical supplies that we were hoping to trade with for food." One raised eyebrow and John sheepishly hurried to get dressed.

"So, on sale?" John asked. "Why were we on sale?"

"Do they know how brilliant I am?" Rodney turned to him, shirt in hand. "I am not a bargain."

John frowned at him. "Let's not go there, okay?" Rodney's scowl made his skin tingle and he had to look away before he smiled in return. To Elizabeth, he repeated, "Sale?"

"As off-worlders, you were very valuable as breeding stock. But apparently they were somehow under the impression neither of you would be very interested in such a thing."

"Really?" John asked, feeling a mild panic. Were they that obvious? "Why would they think that?"

Elizabeth shrugged. "Who knows? These people are very different from us. It could have been anything." Her face gave nothing away, so John finished dressing.

"Dr. Weir, I recommend we return immediately, to prevent further misunderstandings?" Teyla suggested.

"Good idea. Gentlemen?"

John strapped on his holster and straightened, clothes feeling damp and heavy, and surprisingly strange. "Right behind you." He caught Rodney staring at the gun. When Rodney looked up, John mouthed, "Kinky" at him silently, delighted all over again.

Rodney grinned and nodded.

Different was good, John thought. Very good.

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