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Prompt #20 Ada Lovelace Day

Title: The rules of Thermodynamics the Pegasus remix. Part 2: Work
Author scarlettandblue
Prompt # 20 Ada Lovelace day
Pairing: John and Rodney
Summary:A perpetual motion machine of the first kind is impossible.

Disclaimer:: I don’t own them, I only wish I did. I’m doing this for fun not profit so please don’t sue me.

The first part of this can be found here link to The Rules of Thermodynamics, The Pegasus Remix Part 1 Zeroth

Sometimes John really hated his age.

Like now as the days grew shorter in the Autumn on New Lantea 3, it was cooler at night and the breeze off the ocean had some bite. His hip would ache and it would be harder to run through the stiffness and pain in his knees. And as the year drew to its end keeping up with Ronon on their morning run was more about saying fuck you to a date on a calendar than it was about being fit for active duty.

Nearly everyone John worked with was younger than him. Okay Woolsey was older, and so was Caldwell. Landry and O‘Neill were older as well, but John didn’t really count them because they were back on earth. And technically so was Teal‘c and the scary Vala, who was always trying to get a free ride to Atlantis so she could menace McKay, were both older. But they weren’t actually humans from earth so they didn’t count either. Them apart, though, almost everyone he worked with day by day was younger. Even McKay.

And in another three months it would be John’s birthday and when it clicked round it would make him two years older than McKay.

McKay had been born a year and four months after Sheppard, so most of the time John was a year older, but for those four months before Rodney had his next birthday John would be two years older and it really sucked.

John kept working at his morning run. It felt like his knees were lined with shattered glass but he couldn’t afford to stop. He couldn’t afford to give in. He noticed Ronon giving him the look. The one that said he was about to sprint the next part and he didn’t think Sheppard’s old man legs had it in them to keep up. John ground his teeth together and worked hard to keep up. Letting Ronon get away was not an option.

Later, once he had spent enough time in the shower to un stiffen all his muscles, and had rubbed on the odourless liniment that Carson had made up for him, John made his way to the commissary for some breakfast.

All the usual suspects were gathered at the team table. Ronon and Amelia laughing quietly, their heads bent together. Teyla, with Torren sat in her lap, smiling that slightly goofy smile that she only ever smiled at her son.

Teyla was looking radiant lately, her skin honey gold and smooth and her eyes were so bright as she gave her son the big-eyed-surprise! look, and suddenly John felt a hot flush of embarrassment wash through his body from the feet up, as it occurred to him that the last time she had appeared so glowing she had been expecting Torren. John knew he was going to have to ask Teyla because he couldn’t let her stay on a first contact team if she was that way again.

John could feel his toes curling in horror inside his boots at the thought of that particular conversation.

He put his tray down and pulled his chair out to sit. Ronon looked up and caught John’s eye and then glanced across at Teyla with a smirk. Before John could say anything Rodney sat down next to John with his usual clatter of plates and cutlery. He glanced between Ronon and John and asked, “What now?”

Ronon snorted and Amelia slapped his arm, hard. He turned and pouted at her, then glanced back at McKay before shooting an amused glance between Sheppard and Teyla.

Rodney took in the heightened colour that was still flushing Sheppard’s cheeks and his pointy ears and smirked back at Ronon. Then he turned deliberately towards Teyla and said, “I think Colonel I’m so developmentally arrested if I clench any harder I may sprain the entire Pegasus Galaxy thinks he’s figured out your happy news, Teyla.”

Teyla glanced up at Rodney, then looked at John, she raised her eyebrow, it always made John feel like he was in the presence of royalty.

“He’s wrong of course,” Rodney continued, “But you have to allow for his repressive Catholic upbringing. It clouds his world-view sometimes.”

John glared at Rodney and muttered, “Hey!”

“I do have some news to share with you all.” Teyla said. “I did not want to keep this from you, John. But until the results of the first examination came through I was a naturally cautious. Rodney told me everything would be fine, and of course I should have believed him. It was his idea after all, and he has been with me from the beginning, every step of the way. But until I saw that first result, I found it a little difficult to believe.”

John found himself staring at Teyla. He could hear the words coming out of her mouth. And he understood what they meant. He might not be what you’d call a ladies man, exactly, but he’d seen enough chick flicks to know the woman always wanted to wait until she was a little way along before she gave everyone the good news. But Teyla and Rodney. Rodney and Teyla? Rodney and Teyla! That was the part his brain just couldn’t get a handle on.

But it was there plain as day. Rodney was smiling, nodding his head and looking so pleased. And Teyla was clearly thrilled at her news. And the look of pride and happiness on her face made John feel mean-spirited and ugly because he didn’t share their apparent happiness. But he couldn’t share in it. He wasn’t happy, he was horrified.

When had it happened? He just didn’t know. But he supposed it was inevitable.

Kanaan and Teyla had never really reconnected, their time apart when Teyla was on Atlantis, stuck on Earth and Kanaan had stayed behind in the Pegasus Galaxy had been the final straw. But Even John, who normally didn’t get most people’s relationships, had seen they were drifting apart long before that.

And John had found himself recently pondering the way Rodney and Jennifer had got together, and then split up. And he’d been feeling an odd sort of resignation for a few weeks, since the evidence of how attractive other people found McKay had been rather forcefully shoved under his nose.

It shouldn’t have been a surprise that the man seemed to have grown more attractive in his middle years. John had seen the photos of a younger Rodney. He’d almost been too pretty. But then had followed years when an awkward misery had been written so clearly across his expressive features that it masked everything else. But after his break-up with Jennifer it was as if a cloud had lifted and the real McKay was visible again.

It was pretty funny, John supposed. He was like the universal opposite to McKay. As a teenager John had not been pretty at all. He was awkward. And the ears! Terrible teeth encased in an orthodontic brace. A nose that was too big and too crooked for his younger face. Crazy hair that could only be tamed by a permanent crew-cut. Far too skinny, and clumsy everywhere that wasn’t a surf or skate board. And so very aware that he didn’t seem to be like all his friends. He didn’t seem to get what all the fuss over girls was about.

But by his twenties John kind of grew into his looks. He’d lost the brace and the crew-cut. He’d learned to be charming and to hide. He’d learned to accept the way he looked to other people. But he never did understand why he still never seemed to get what he really wanted. And when he looked in the mirror he still saw crazy hair and the ears and a crooked nose.

Now when he looked, he also saw a grizzled scruff of beard when he didn’t shave, and maybe the start of a double chin if he looked a little sideways.

He’d had an idea, though. Maybe it was just wishful thinking on his part, brought on by the change in the Uniform Code. But John had wondered if he had a chance with McKay now he seemed to be over his Married with Kids phase.

Of course in light of Teyla’s news John realised that was all it had been, stupid wishful thinking. He tuned back into the conversation, McKay was talking about working hard, and a degree in Computer Science, his eyes were shining and he was smiling, so obviously happy with the situation. It was ironic, the harder McKay worked, the smarter he became, and the hotter he seemed to be. At least that’s how it looked to John. He guessed it wasn’t just him that found McKay’s intelligence attractive, not if he and Telya were…..

John didn’t want to finish that thought, he focused on the conversation going on around him.

“ ……name did you decide on?“ John caught the tail end of the question Ronon had just asked.

“Ada Lovelace McKay.” was McKay‘s reply.

And just like that it was all too real. It was fantastic for Teyla and for Rodney and John knew he should be happy for his friends. And he would be. Just not right at this moment.

He got up, his chair scraped a little and everyone suddenly seemed to be looking at him. John smiled in the general direction of the table.
“I’ll roster you out of the gate team, Teyla. It’s for the best.”

Teyla smiled at John, but she looked a little confused and said, “It’s okay for the moment John, really. Maybe nearer the end I’ll need to pull back on other activities, but it’s not a problem at the moment.”

“No. I think we had this conversation the last time, you know how I feel about this. I’m sure McKay agrees.”

John turned to glare at Rodney, willing him to say the right thing.

“I think Teyla is pretty capable of staying on the team and coping with the extra load, Sheppard. At least for now.”

John knew that people were always accusing McKay of being insensitive. Normally he thought it was just people who were thin skinned or intimidated by McKay’s intelligence, and he secretly enjoyed the way McKay blundered through any and all social niceties. But even John knew this was no way to talk about the woman who was pregnant with your child.

“Well I guess my repressed Catholic upbringing taught me something, McKay. You should be supporting Teyla and helping her through this time.”

McKay bristled and raised his chin as he snapped, “I am supporting her! I supplied all the books and I’m happy to devote several hours a week to work on anything that she’s struggling with. And I plan to take the week off so I can help her through the final push. It’s not like I haven’t done it before, Sheppard!”

And of course John remembered that yes, Rodney had been the one who had helped Teyla when Torren was born. Although to be honest John had gotten the impression he had not been a willing participant. And he hadn’t seemed to be that knowledgeable at the time.

“John, Rodney is giving me all the help I need. Please do not trouble yourself.”

John looked across at Teyla, she appeared perfectly content, she certainly didn’t seem to think that McKay had miss-spoken. So he nodded and then he turned to head out. He thought he would get the new team rosters done and emailed out straight away. Then he might head down to the gym. He could get an hour on the treadmill in before lunch.

Sometimes John felt like he lived his life in perpetual motion, but he never seemed to get anywhere.

He didn’t hear Rodney say.

“Hey, John, you still up for our Fringe marathon tonight?”

McKay watched Sheppard leave, then turned back to the others and said, “Is it just me or did John seem a little weird?”

Teyla nodded and said, “I did not realise he took these things so seriously.”

Rodney frowned, but then he shook his head and grinned at Teyla, “So how does it feel to be the first recipient of the Ada Lovelace/McKay Foundation Scholarship the Pegasus Galaxy?”

Teyla smiled again and replied, “It is a momentous thing. The idea that one day children from different worlds might be able to come to this city to study. That your world would fund something like this. That you did this so I could finish the Computer Science degree I started when we were back on Earth.”

Rodney patted her hand. “I’d probably have to eat all of my diplomas and give up any idea of a Nobel if I couldn’t manage to fund a little educational and research program, even if it is in another galaxy.”

Ronon muttered something.

Rodney turned to him and smiled, “You’re next you know?”

Ronon shrugged. Amelia slapped the back of his head and he grumbled, “Not likely.“

“I thought maybe you’d like a chance to study some poetry from another galaxy. Give you something to compare to the Satedan Romance Cycle Poetry you’re always telling us about. Did you know, Ada Lovelace was the daughter of a famous poet?”
“Yes McKay, we know!” Everyone at the table answered at the same time.

“Well I find it interesting.”

“Hey McKay?” Ronon said with a smirk, “I think Sheppard was acting weird. You should go and make sure he’s okay.”

“Yes, perhaps I should. Thank you .” Rodney got up and headed out after John.

Teyla smiled at Ronon and Amelia patted his hand.

Ronon would wait a while before he told Teyla that Sheppard had thought McKay had knocked her up. Maybe he’d wait until their next session with the sticks. It was always useful to have an advantage when fighting with Teyla.

The next part can be found here: link to The Rules of Thermodynamics, The Pegasus Remix Part 3 The Second Rule


( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:36 pm (UTC)
HAHAHAHAHAHA OMG, I saw it coming, as soon as McKay was talking about computer science, and this was just HILARIOUS and BEAUTIFUL. Oh, man. You hit all the right funny bones. I love that Teyla's going into *science* but John thought she was *pregnant* and oh, man. Can't breathe.

I plan to take the week off so I can help her through the final push. This was where I lost it! I hate that Shep was all sad-face at the idea of losing McKay to another woman again, but this was just *priceless*!
Oct. 15th, 2011 08:01 pm (UTC)
I am so happy to hear you enjoyed it,
it's always so hard to know if what you think is funny as you write it will actually be funny to other people so I am very relieved and delighted that I made you laugh. That is a lovley feeling.

And yeah, that final push I loved that it made you laugh

I am a little worried though, that maybe I was too late with this story, Again!!! And the mods will be rightly very very annoyed with me and tell me off, which I will totally deserve!! But I tried really really hard to get it posted on time.
Oct. 15th, 2011 08:08 pm (UTC)
I really don't think it'll be a big deal... I have had the same problem, and as long as what I write was well-received and I was only like, a minute late, they are really quite forgiving of our tardiness. (and OMG I just realized that "Tardis" and "tardy" are from the same root word, holy shit linguistic mind fuck!)

I think at the worst they'll just wait till the next amnesty week and add you to that list!
Oct. 15th, 2011 08:42 pm (UTC)
So sweet! I hope Rodney soon puts John right!!
Oct. 15th, 2011 09:20 pm (UTC)
Thank you
I'm glad you liked it.
I'm not sure on the John front, I have the feeling that there could be further confusion ahead.
Oct. 15th, 2011 08:44 pm (UTC)
Cute and funny! :-D
Oct. 15th, 2011 09:22 pm (UTC)
I'm so happy you liked it, thank you.
Oct. 15th, 2011 10:08 pm (UTC)
Heh, i was smiling throughout. I want the scene where Rodney tells John after demanding to know why he's all weird and John's all- then you and Teyala didn't...? and Rodney's all - no you doofus. And then they get together. that.

and Ronon waiting to tell Teyla what john thought- priceless.
Oct. 15th, 2011 10:16 pm (UTC)
I'm so happy to have made you smile.
Thank you so much for your kind words.

Yeah that scene, I'm not sure if it's gonna go quite like that. I can't help feeling that there are a few more twists and turns and misunderstandings to negotiate after all this is only part 2.

And yeah Ronon is the master of comic timing that is for sure :-)
Oct. 16th, 2011 12:11 am (UTC)

The boys really need to work on their communication skills. Thank goodness Ronon is there to help!
Oct. 16th, 2011 12:27 am (UTC)
Oh yeah, miss-communication it's my favourite kind.

And Ronon to the Rescue!!!

Edited at 2011-10-16 12:27 am (UTC)
Oct. 16th, 2011 06:13 am (UTC)
This was really cute, but it wants to make me pick up John and hug him 'til he comes to his senses.
Oct. 16th, 2011 08:38 am (UTC)
Yeah I know what you mean,
and yet I keep writing it
I'm so glad you liked it though.
Oct. 16th, 2011 03:38 pm (UTC)

OMG! So awesome, especially since Ronon knew about John's mistaken belief the whole time. :)
Oct. 16th, 2011 03:59 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad that you liked it, and thank you for very kind words. And yeah that Ronon eh? In fact I think he might have even led to John's mistaken belief a little now I come to think about it ;-)
Oct. 16th, 2011 04:48 pm (UTC)
I love it! Nicely done! %)
Oct. 16th, 2011 04:58 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much, I'm glad that you liked it :-)
Oct. 19th, 2011 01:55 am (UTC)
John could feel his toes curling in horror inside his boots at the thought of that particular conversation.

This line killed me--and I love how Rodney and John were talking at cross purposes! Too funny (and just a little bit sad on John's behalf...) :-)
Oct. 19th, 2011 08:25 am (UTC)
Thank you,
I'm really glad you liked it.
And it is a little from John's point of view, but like in part one, John's having a bit of a mid life crisis at the moment, but hopefully things will eventually get better
Oct. 19th, 2011 09:02 pm (UTC)
thank you for you comment, I am so glad that you liked it.
and yeah, it is kind of sad for John, this is a sort of mid life crisis story for him. but hopefully things will be okay in the end.
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )

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