Authors Note: This is my first SGA fanfic and it hasn't been beta-read so I apologize if it has grammar/spelling errors in or if the characters sound a bit off. Please let me know what you think of this, complaints, suggestions; any feedback would be helpful as long as it is constructive.

Disclaimer: I don't own the rights to Stargate in any incarnations of course and I'm not making any money, this is just some harmless fanfic fun.

Prologue

Major Sheppard watched Teyla deep in conversation with the Deluthion royal attenders, her eyebrows furrowed in concentration as she regarded the elegantly dressed servants who were refusing them an audience with the King and Queen.

So far they'd met negotiations with some resistance from what he could tell watching across the room, which he hoped was what Teyla was fixing right then. Funnily enough it didn't look much like she was. His gut told him these people wouldn't accept no for an answer to whatever they were insisting on, despite their politeness up to this point.

Nearby Ford sat comfortably in a plush chair, sunken into it up to his knees, with a scantily clad Deluthion court girl chatting to him aimlessly whilst fanning herself. Ford looked pretty pleased with his predicament. Sometimes Sheppard thought Ford had all the luck with the ladies, must be his innocent youthful looks he mused whilst eying around the lushly decorated room.

Everything abut the Deluthions shouted out wealthy, from the palatial public buildings to the enormous castle which entrance hall they stood in; he was in no doubt that they could spare them some food and perhaps a few luxuries too. Trading with them could only boost the morale of the folks back on Atlantis given the quality of the goods the Deluthions had for themselves.

Sheppard looked around casually noting Mckay was standing offside to Teyla eavesdropping and looking rather nervous. Personally he didn't like the look of things if Mckay was getting twitchy. What could they be demanding that was so bad?

Despite the tense atmosphere among the small group of Deluthions discussing things with Teyla, he intended to find out what it was that was jeopardising their mission to get much needed supplies.

Sheppard strode over to Teyla, butting into the conversation.

"I just need to borrow her for a minute, ok?", he said, not bothering to wait for an answer as he dragged her over to the other side of the grand entrance hall.

"Teyla whats going on here, it doesn't look good from what I could see."

Her expression was troubled as she explained the situation.

"Well, there is a slight problem with our trading negotiations."

Teyla paused, looking unsure of what to say.

"Yes and it is?"

"The Deluthions will only adhere to negotiating with our leader,..."

"Weir, right, so whats the catch?"

Her voice sounded pained to say what she did but he couldn't see what was wrong from what she has said, at least not yet.

"Deluthions have a certain expectation of people in authority. They see responsibility as linked to commitment, it is their criteria for a leader who can be respected and trusted."

"Yeah, so. Weirs plenty committed, just like the rest of us, we're all stuck on Atlantis and we can't bail out. After all we did wake the wraith."

And it seemed like he was reminded of that fact every day. He prayed the catch to all this wasn't involved in that. Though at least that would make it a familiar problem, something he knew how to handle

"That is not the particular way they value commitment; they view it in terms of partnership"

Sheppard looked at Teyla's apprehensive face, scared of not being able to fulfill the needs of those back home, and replied, "No worries, I'll sort this out".

Weir sat upright across the table, her professional manner apparent like always, listening to the recount of the missions progress.

"So your telling me the good news is you've managed to persuade the Deluthions to negotiate with the leaders of Atlantis, namely me. What's the bad news Major?"

Sheppard cringed before opening his mouth, he almost couldn't make himself say it. It had seemed a good idea at the time but now, faced with Weir back on Atlantis he wasn't so sure.

Luckily Teyla responded, he only hoped she might save him the effort of admitting what he'd promised. It was probably the most awkward thing he'd agreed on so far, although not for himself.

"They expect leaders to have a sense of responsibility and commitment but they do not see these qualities in the ways you would expect."

Weir glanced back and forth between the members of the team, it was evident that something was up, she just wanted to know what it was. The sooner she knew the better they could deal with it.

"What are you saying Teyla?"

Teyla looked soulfully at Weir struggling for words and Sheppard realized he had to be the one to confess what a debacle he'd gotten them all into.

He looked up bravely and said it outright, about the best way it could come from him.

"What she's saying, is they expect you to be married...", he took a another breath in before blurting out the rest of the truth, "... and I kinda told them you were."