Title: Happy New Year Atlantis
Fandom: Stargate Atlantis
Author: Dreaming K
Pairing: McKay/Sheppard, slight mention of Lorne/Parrish
Disclaimer: I don’t own Stargate Atlantis or any characters of the show. Just dreaming :)
Summary: Nobody on Atlantis would ever forget this New Year's Eve party.
Warnings: I've made some assumptions regarding the SGA timeline.
Please feel free to point out any mistakes, I'll correct them immediately. Hope you enjoy! Happy New Year everyone!!
Happy New Year Atlantis
"This was a good idea, John. Thank you you for organzing it." Elizabeth smiled at John. Looking at the relaxed and soft faces all around him John had to agree with her. It had been a good idea.
The last few weeks had been what could possibly be described as quiet in the Pegasus galaxy. No major clashes with the Wraith and the Genii. Or for that matter, any other hostile natives and we're-just-peaceful-farmers-really. No blown-up planets, funky, messed up Ancient technology or creepy bugs. For once it seemed they could simply enjoy their relations with other inhabitants of Pegasus and explore their city. He wasn't letting down his guard nor were the others on Atlantis, this was Pegasus after all. But shifting down a gear or two from the usual pressing urgency and life saving at breakneck speed that defined most of their time on Atlantis had done wonders for the expedition's morale.
They had missed the turn of the year last time. Having a bunch of Wraith hive ships on your door step had a way of engaging your every thought, every action, towards survival that trivial matters like the fact that it was New Year’s Eve - or Christmas for that matter - were forgotten.
He shrugged at Elizabeth. "Everyone needs the chance to relax once in a while." He could see Ronon and Teyla making their way through the crowd of people, stopping here and there to exchange a few words and smiles with scientists or soldiers. Or rather Teyla did, Ronon looming quietly at her shoulder.
"Ronon still doesn't talk much, does he?"
John looked at Elizabeth who was contemplating their two resident 'aliens'. "Yeah. He is a good shot, though," he offered, earning himself a raised eyebrow and the look. He added, "He and Teyla really hit it off, and he hasn't killed Rodney, yet. He is a good addition to the team." Elizabeth nodded, but didn't say anything in return.
Teyla approached them now, Ronon trailing behind her. "Elizabeth, John", she greeted them happily. "I must thank you for sharing this festivity of yours with my people."
"You're our friends," John reminded her. "Good times and bad." She gave him a radiant smile, bowing her head in request. As had become normal for him in the many months he'd known the Athosians he bowed, gently touching their foreheads together, letting them rest there for long moments before drawing back.
"How long?" Ronon's gruff voice asked.
Elizabeth glanced at her watch. "15 minutes. I guess we'd better find something to drink."
Slowly they wove their way to the refreshment table where cups and glasses in various shapes and sizes were arrayed in lieu of champagne flutes. They did have a lot more resources at hand now that the Daedalus acted as their regular link back to Earth, but champagne glasses weren’t high on the list. A soft breeze came from the ocean reminding them that while it was New Year’s Eve and the middle of winter at the SGC they enjoyed a steady warm climate on Lantea. Due to the warm, pleasant nights and the size of their expedition they had decided to hold this party outside on one of the piers that could easily accommodate all of their people plus the Athosians.
They each collected a glass of Athosian ale, generously sponsored by Teyla and her people instead of champagne. John let his gaze roam the food and drink tables. He'd expected to find Rodney here since the scientist could always reliably be found somewhere close to food, but he was nowhere in sight. A quick glance at his own wrist watch had John scanning the crowd looking for his best friend.
"Say have you seen Rodney?" he asked the others. Elizabeth, Teyla and Ronon shook their heads and John went back to scanning faces.
"Could he still be in his lab?" Elizabeth asked with a frown.
John shook his head distractedly. "No, he came with me. He said he had to talk to someone and then disappeared." John had made a point of dropping by the physics labs to make sure his scientist joined the party and didn't work through the night. Rodney obviously had been surprised to be picked up, but the slight flush that had graced his cheeks on their way to the pier had told John that he was actually pleased by it. Whereas others had taken time off in recent weeks, Rodney had continued working at the same furious pace as ever, often working until the early morning hours. He hadn't shared what had him working so hard, even going so far as to move his project to a separate lab when the continued questions from John and Radek propelled him into a tantrum of annoyance.
"Perhaps you should try to radio him, John?" Teyla suggested. John shook his head. "He doesn't have it with him. Zelenka is on emergency duty tonight and Rodney said he'd actually leave him to it."
"I'll look around, see if I find him," John said over his shoulder. A glass in each hand, just in case Rodney didn't have one already, he moved back into the crowd, dodging people and running kids he was bent on finding his best friend before the countdown. He stopped to ask about Rodney, but neither Radek, Miko nor Carson knew where he was. Major Lorne straightened from his intimate conversation with Dr. David Parrish when he saw his CO approach. He was still blushing slightly when he - like the others - admitted that he hadn't seen Rodney. John thanked him and left both men to their love talk, continuing his search. Starting to grow anxious he wondered if Rodney had gone back to the labs or his quarters. Anxiety quickly transformed into worry when he ended his circle back at the refreshment table and still no sign of Rodney was to be found. Had something happened to him? He cursed himself for his cocky thoughts about peace and uneventful weeks and possibly jinxing the whole evening.
He had just decided to go check the lab and Rodney's quarters when all around him people started chanting the countdown. He cursed, unreasonably disappointed.
Elizabeth, Teyla and Ronon were clinking glasses when he rejoined them and they happily touched their glasses to his as people all around them shouted "Happy New Year", hugging and kissing each other. John was still rubbing his shoulder from a back-numbing pat on the back from Ronon when Elizabeth pulled him into a hug and kissed his cheek. "Happy New Year, John," she said. "You too," he croaked back, not quite able to match the smile she gave him. Fortunately, Teyla drew him into another head bump at that moment. He was grateful when she didn't say anything and he didn't have to reply. Looking at everyone around him cheering, John knew it was more than marginally silly, but he did feel a tiny little bit lost without-
"Hey, what's that?" Ronon pointed into the night to the pier adjoining theirs. More pointed fingers and surprised exclamations drew the attention of nearly everyone to a spot on the other pier nearly 300 feet away from John's position.
White sparks were bursting up from the ground and John tensed, hand going to his thigh that usually held his gun holster only to grasp empty air. Ronon made a similar grab for the energy gun at his belt. John opened his mouth to give orders when a familiar whooosh filled the night air and a rocket launched into the sky exploding into a rain of glitter and lights. He heard Elizabeth gasp as surprised as he and many others did. He had the presence of mind to put a hand on Ronon's raised gun, pushing it down to point at the ground, before his attention was completely captured by the colorful spectacle in air. Wherever he was, he fiercely hoped that Rodney could see this, too.
The sparks of the fountain were changing color every few seconds, the blue, red, green and golden light reflecting on the water and doubling the effect. More rockets and shells were launched into the sky. The colorful explosions painted their upturned faces in soft hues. There were exploding starbursts, stars with long trailing tails, howlers, more fountains and quick, crackling fire bursts that formed bouquets of light. The fireworks didn't last more than three or four minutes, but as John gazed up at the stars it felt like much longer. He knew it would stay in their memories for a long time.
"That was...," Teyla's breathy voice held awe and wistfulness as it broke through the silence after the last burst of stars had extinguished. John smiled at her. The Athosians had probably never seen fireworks. For them explosions held terror and fear as they meant death and destruction. After a few moments of reverent silence someone started clapping their hands. Others joined and soon the pier shook with thunderous applause and cheering.
John leaned into Elizabeth. "I'm gonna go and check out the...," he tilted his head towards the neighboring pier and Elizabeth nodded, her eyes still shining with emotion. He patted her arm and left her to explain the tradition and workings of fireworks to Teyla and Ronon.
The people he passed on the way off the pier and back to Atlantis were chattering excitedly, some repeatedly calling "Did you see that?!" while others wiped wistful tears from their faces, smiling and whispering of fireworks and family and the past.
It took him a few minutes to get from their pier to the halls and the junction that would lead him to the adjoining pier. There were no transporters out on any of Atlantis’ piers, something that Rodney had complained was a serious oversight on part of the Ancients who built the city. He wondered who was responsible for this little show. Probably one of the scientists; although there were several explosion and detonation experts among the military personnel.
He was lost in thought when he rounded the next corner and, therefore, couldn't prevent barreling into the person on the other side that had been coming his way. Both grabbed the other to keep from sprawling onto the floor.
"Colonel! Watch where you're going, will you!" Rodney's familiar sharp tone made John grin and hold on tighter when he tried to pull away. He wasn't about to let him wander off to parts unknown again.
"Rodney, where were you? You missed the most awesome show out there." He winced at the slight whine that crept into his voice. He sniffed and then blinked, his eyebrows shooting up. Rodney was practically reeking of gun powder and smoke. Something in his mind clicked.
"It was you," he crowed, surprise quickly drowned out by a strange sense of pride and deep affection for his best friend. That a self-proclaimed selfish man like Rodney would use weeks of emergency-free lab and research time to fabricate something so unimportant as fireworks for their New Year's party was...mind blowing. And it showed again that Rodney was anything but the brash, arrogant and selfish man he seemed to be at first glance. Fortunately, John had given him infinitely many glances since their first meeting and by now he knew exactly who Dr. Rodney McKay was.
"It was you," he whispered again as he crowded Rodney against the wall of the hallway.
"I-I don't know what you are talking about." Rodney tried for innocence even though they both knew he could lie for a hundred pounds of premium coffee. "I was just trying to get away from the morons that call themselves botanists, and...and the kids! There were dozens of kids running around. You know I hate them!" Rodney exclaimed.
"Sure you do," John drawled.
"I do!" Rodney affirmed heartily. "One of the little critters plowed into me during one of their mindless running games and I nearly lost my balance and fell off the pier into the water. Do you know how many creatures could be living down there just waiting to rob humanity of their only chance for any scientific advancement worth mentioning within the next fifty years?" He demanded.
"I'm sure they didn't mean it." John soothed, now holding Rodney's wrists captive against the wall. Rodney face was flushed by now, uncertainty and hope warring in his blue eyes. He licked his lips, drawing breath to say more.
John kissed him.
It was deep and intense from the first second. It was something John had been longing to do for months. Rodney immediately opened his mouth, muttering "finally" against John's mouth and then let him in. Their tongues found each other immediately, searching the other out, teasing and twisting. The kiss turned even deeper, even more intense and John couldn't suppress the shiver that ran through his body, making him push himself against Rodney and the heat radiating from him even though the shivering had nothing to do with coldness. John's fingers slid up to grip Rodney's hands, their fingers tangling together, holding on tightly as they still continued to kiss.
Finally John had to reluctantly release Rodney's lips to give them both the chance to catch their breath. He moved his head back a few inches to look into Rodney's eyes. He was grinning, they both were.
"Happy New Year, John," Rodney said, eyes still a bit dazed from the kiss.
John rubbed their noses together in affirmation "Yeah, you too." His smile was brilliant.
"So," Rodney hesitated. "You liked it?"
John kissed him deeply again. "I loved it," he murmured into Rodney's mouth. "Let me help next year, yeah?"