Pairing/Charecter(s): Carson, Zelenka, Ancient!John/Rodney
Warnings/Spoliers: thru pt1 of "Conurati" in the Ancient!John 'verse
Disclaimer: Title 17 of the US Code, § 107, aka the Fair Use Doctrine.
Summary: Part I of Operation Get John Back
Notes: I desperately wanted to make this fit into "Conurati," couldn't, and decided to post it as a drabble anyway.
Sumatriptan, also known as ilmitrex, is a medicine most often proscribed for migraines.
A Stargate: Atlantis drabble
"Nec mortem effugere quisquam nec amorem potest. "
"No one is able to flee from death or love."
Carson's head snaps up, causing a pile of patient files that had been teetering on the edge of his desk to fall theatrically to the floor, joining the already tenuous stacks and white archive boxes there. "Rodney," his says wearily. "How are you?"
"I-" he begins. He tries to meet Carson's eyes, fails entirely, and sinks into the chair opposite, which is incongruously free of clutter. "I think it's safe to say that, uh, I am at times a petty, vindictive, even jealous man. I sublimate my own anxieties or feelings of inadequacy by creating a bubble of hostility around myself. I know that you, more than most, have had to bear the brunt of that hostility."
Carson goes ten shades of scarlet and fiddles with the cuff of his lab coat. "Rodney, you do nae have to apologise.
"Yes I do. Here's the thing," Rodney tries to meet his eyes again but can only reach the spot over Carson's left shoulder, but it's close enough that he's going to count it anyway. "You're a brilliant doctor, and a decent human being, and kind of my best friend, and you should not have had to endure the kind of abuse that you've taken from me the past few years. Especially this morning. I was..."
The flush is mostly gone now, though the doctor's still fiddling with the cuff of his coat. "You really do nae have to explain anything. I understand completely."
Which is, of course, when the like a heel feelings start setting in, because well, it's almost easy to forget that Cadman died not even two months ago, and that she and Carson had been dating. That she'd been pretty much Carson's whole world. That Carson had made Michael and Michael had killed Cadman (except that he hadn't, John had. But Carson had saved John's life after they'd first found him bleeding out in the cathedra, so maybe he's still a little bit responsible and, God, Rodney is now the only person in the whole universe who knew the truth of Cadman's death, and she isn't even two months in the ground).
The like a heel feelings continue for exactly thirty-eight seconds, and after that the anger comes charging back.
"He's not dead, Carson."
Carson gives him the same sad, pitying look that's been on the faces of everyone Rodney's so much as passed in the hall today. "No, he's nae, but the end result's the same."
"No, it's not. I mean, yes, John's gone, but he's not actually gone gone."
"John's coming back, Carson. I don't know how, I don't know when, but he's going to come back."
"He came back before."
"This is different."
"How?" he demands, jumping to his feet and waving his hands accusingly. "Why is it different this time? Why? Please, tell me, what information is everyone else privy to that I am not? Because, the way I remember it, I was the only other person in the room when John disappeared from it. Not you. Not Elizabeth."
Carson sighs. "I want to believe you, Rodney. I really do. But if the Colonel was coming back, would nae he have done it by now?"
"Maybe he can't."
There's a discrete cough over Rodney's earwig. He's had an open comm to Zelenka since the moment he entered the infirmary, in hopes of distracting Carson long enough for them to get their hands on John's blood sample. The cough, hopefully, means that Zelenka got the goods and he can end this horse and pony show.
"Look," Rodney says, "can we just go back to the part where I said I was sorry?"
With a sad but genuine smile, "Of course we can." Then, apparently unable to stop doctoring for more than a few minutes at a time, "Do you still have that headache? I left out some sumatriptan you can take if so."
"Yeah," Rodney says tiredly. "That would be great, actually." And then he pockets the pills, promises to get some rest, and high-tails it back to Aurora.
"Did you mean any of that?" Zelenka asks once they meet up again in the ship's sickbay, where Lorne is dozing lightly on one of the bio beds there, apparently having given in to soft, soothing song Rory's decided to sing ever since they embarked on this project, as if she knows just what they're up to and is trying to help them along. Or maybe she's just gotten over the worst of her impotent anger and has reached the point where all she can do is sing softly to herself and hope this all turns out to be a dream. Either way, it means his headache is finally starting to fade away, as Lorne's must be.
"Any of what?" he asks impatiently, wanting this to be over with as soon as possible. Rodney feels just so impossibly tired, and if there's any justice in the world he will be able to curl up in corner soon himself and hope this turns into nothing more than some terrible dream.
Maybe he'll take that sumatriptan after all.
"Your apology to Doctor Beckett, did you mean any of it?"
"Of course I did."
Pushing his glasses up his nose, "It is nothing, just a thought."
"Well, go on then. Share with the class."
"I was just thinking that you can be quite a nice person when you set your mind to it."
"That is a cruel and vicious lie. Take it back," Rodney demands.
Zelenka doesn't and just moves on to Phase II of their plan to get John back.