|You Think Too Much
Author: Anya2 PM
An accident leaves Elizabeth’s life in danger and Rodney’s only hope of being able to help her is to try and quiet his over active brain. But with the mistakes he made in ‘Trinity’ still fresh on his mind, this is easier said than done…Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Romance - Elizabeth W. & Rodney M. - Chapters: 3 - Words: 6,324 - Reviews: 15 - Favs: 5 - Follows: 10 - Updated: 09-03-06 - Published: 10-20-05 - id: 2626529
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Think Too Much
Spoilers: Up to and including 'Trinity'
Summary: An accident leaves Elizabeth's life in danger and Rodney's only hope of being able to help her is to try and quiet his over active brain. But with the mistakes he made in 'Trinity' still fresh on his mind, this is easier said than done...
Elizabeth looked up in surprise, not realising until she heard the cheerful voice just how involved she had gotten in the report she was reading. Her gaze immediately settled upon Rodney, standing on the threshold of her office, a very pleased grin on his face. The sight made her smile slightly in return. She always found his good moods oddly infectious and he just had one of those smiles that, when it was genuine, she couldn't help but share. She wasn't entirely sure if that was a weakness on her part.
"Rodney", she greeted with a bright nod, habit making her push the tablet PC away a little so that he could see he had her full attention, "What can I do for you?"
She knew that smile of his. It meant that he either wanted something from her or he'd found some new and exciting discovery that he wished to share. Often it was a mixture of both.
He walked into the office, clearly considering her question an invitation to do so. The infectious zeal that she had made promise to guard against more resolutely since the incident on Doranda was clear in his manner and tone and, despite herself, she could already feel it drawing her in.
"We've been playing with the control chair," he began with unabashed glee, his hands as always punctuating his words.
"'Playing'?" she immediately queried with a raised eyebrow, not liking his flippant use of the term. Playing with a highly destructive ten thousand year old weapon did not sound like a good idea to her. In fact, she knew it wasn't. Worryingly enough it was just the sort of thing she could see Rodney doing.
"Just running some simple tests on it," he adjusted with a dismissive wave of his hand, managing to say it as if it was the most basic thing in the world, "Now we've got the ZPM installed we can do more stuff without worrying about draining the city's power too drastically."
Elizabeth nodded, seeing his reasoning and reassuring herself that he was only trying to help. She was constantly impressed and surprised by the initiative Rodney took to benefit the city and the people living here. She knew that he partly did these things for his own glory; that he enjoyed the challenge and praise associated with doing the seemingly impossible. But when her older self had told them of how the Rodney she knew had died in order make sure other people had gotten out of the rapidly flooding city….well, Elizabeth hadn't been surprised at all. As well hidden as it was, she had seen from the very start that underneath the snark and the bluster was a selfless side that he wasn't often credited for. Although that probably had something to do with the fact that his self obsessed side was the far more vocal of the two.
"And if we could get it up and running it would certainly give us an advantage should the Wraith come calling again," she added, pointing out the practical benefit to his work, just in case he hadn't gotten any further than considering this as a theoretical interest .
He nodded, clearly pleased with himself, "Precisely."
Elizabeth frowned, her sharp mind already working through the possibilities and problems that he may have come across and settling upon the most pressing one, "But I thought we were out of drones."
"Nearly," he agreed, holding up a finger to indicate she'd hit on the crucial point, "But we've found a couple of whole but apparently deactivated ones in storage, plus a few in bits. And since we installed the ZPM we've been able to get to sections of the Atlantis database that we haven't been able to access before."
Elizabeth's interest suddenly pricked up further, "You know where there are more?"
"No," he said with a smug grin, almost like a showman about to reveal his latest amazing trick.
"Then you know how to make some more," she surmised.
"We found the plans," he said with a nod, "Problem is we don't have some of the constituent parts."
"But?" she pressed.
"Who says there's a 'but'?" he asked, almost teasingly.
She gave him a knowing smile, "If there wasn't you wouldn't be here."
He accepted that with a nod.
"Well we have managed to use some of the principles and put together something that should do a similar job," he explained, "It won't have the same yield as one of the Ancient drones, but it should still pack one hell of a punch and we could still use the chair to launch them. Possibly."
Elizabeth frowned just a little. That was certainly a big discovery and a very big deal for the city and the expedition should be able to pull it off. "Why didn't you mention you were working on this before?" she asked, voicing the concern that immediately struck her.
He shrugged, "I wasn't sure how successful it would be. I didn't want to get your hopes up."
She looked at him a little curiously.
"By 'your', I mean 'everyone'," he clarified rather awkwardly, "Collective 'your', not you personally 'your'. Not that I'd want to get your hopes up unnecessarily or-"
"Well I'm very glad it worked," she interrupted encouragingly, trying hard to smooth the amused smile from her face, "At least we won't be sitting ducks anymore."
Glancing at the time, realising that she was on the verge of missing a meeting, she scooped up the tablet and stood, heading passed him.
"That's really good, Rodney," she said, patting him on the shoulder, "I've got a meeting with Dr Cooke right now, but keep me posted with your progress, okay?"
"Actually," he said, hurriedly following on behind her as she left the room, "We don't know if they work yet."
"You don't?" she asked, a little distractedly as she swiftly walked down the steps, heading for the nearest transporter.
"No," he confirmed, "That's why we need to do some tests."
She suddenly stopped at the base of the stairs, turning to look back at him, her instinct immediately kicking in. "Tests?" she queried, looking for further information.
"A couple of test firings," he said with remarkable nonchalance, trying to make it sound simple, "Nothing too big. Just want to test the delivery and control systems behave them say way they do in the simulations."
She wasn't buying it.
"No," she said firmly, turning and walking off again. Just as she predicted he was immediately at her heels.
"What do you mean, 'no'?" he asked incredulously, "How can it be 'no'?"
"I can't give my permission for you to do test firings around the city," she reasoned, "Not just like that."
"Rodney," she sighed in exasperation, holding up her hand to stop him, "I appreciate all your hard work, really I do, but the idea of you firing untested weapons anywhere near this city isn't something I can just say 'yes' to."
He visibly stiffened, and she knew at once he had taken everything she had said the wrong way.
"What do you mean, the idea of 'me' firing it?" he snapped defensively, "So you'd be okay with say, Sheppard doing it? Or how about Zelenka? Why not just give him my job whilst you're at it? Hey, I could do with the time off."
"Rodney, I don't doubt your ability" she said, soothing his ranting with a reassuring touch on his arm, knowing how his recent mishap had left him more paranoid than ever about what others thought of him, "Nor do I think you would intentionally do something that would possibly endanger this city. But at the end of the day, it is my responsibility. Get your research together and you can present it to me properly after lunch, okay? I'm sure it'll be fine. But you have to appreciate that I need to be certain about the possible risks before authorising something like that."
"Oh. Well, yes. Of course you do".
His manner had instantly softened and he had the good grace to look mildly apologetic about his unjustified paranoia, whilst the enthusiasm gradually returned to his face.
"Okay," he agreed brightly, seemingly appeased, "Right".
Elizabeth smiled at him. It appeared that she did indeed have the handling of Rodney McKay down to a fine art. After his recent errors she had had to reign him in a little but there was a fine line to tread between being cautious and damaging his confidence with mistrust.
"I'll go do that report then," he said brightly, "After lunch, yes?"
"After lunch," she confirmed with a smile.
She watched him head off with all the enthusiasm of some kind of hyperactive puppy and shook her head in fond amusement. Then she continued on, heading to the transporter and the west pier of the city where Dr Cooke's team had apparently found something she just had to see.