Title: Become Undone
Series: All That Glitters
Pairing(s): John/Teyla, Beckett/other
Rating: PG-13 (T+)
Warnings: None for Become Undone (except for large alcohol consumption!), violence, adult situations, and discussions of rape and abuse in later chapters.
Disclaimer: Stargate Atlantis, its characters and all related entities are the property of MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, Gekko Productions and The SciFi Channel. This story was written for entertainment purposes only. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author(s).
Author notes at bottom of story.
Chapter Two of All That Glitters:
John took another swig of the extremely strong brew that Teyla had brought over from the main land and almost choked at the feeling of fire going through his chest.
"Maj. Sheppard?" Teyla asked concernedly, as he coughed a few times and handed the bottle to Ford.
He shook his head in an effort to clear away the burning sensation, "What do you put in this stuff, Teyla? It's like Everclear on crack!"
She grinned at him but didn't answer, as Carson had asked her a question about the after effects of the brew. A quite pertinent question, considering how much the Scot had ingested. John had never seen someone drink that much and seem so un-drunk.
John leaned back against the wall and sighed, letting the alcohol calm him and ease him into the early glow of drunkenness. He treasured the rest, it seemed like more and more these days he felt run down and sick of everything. Even though his knee had healed nicely after twisting it quite badly a few weeks ago, he still felt drained and worn.
Rest good. Alcohol, even better.
It was Chrismashannakwanazayule (Weir liked equality) and she had ordered a three day holiday, a respite from the Wraith, the work, and the world. She had also looked the other way when Teyla had suggested bringing in some "festive" drinks after she learned about the traditional alcohol consumption customs of Winter Solstice and Christmas. Teyla had even gotten into the Christmas spirit by ordering all her friends to exchange gifts.
That had been interesting, to say the least.
John had found himself strapped for ideas and had spent an entire night rummaging through his meager stores of things that resemble presents without any luck. He had a plethora of native pots, jewelries, and trinkets that had been presented to him on other planets but all of it seemed impersonal and most of his team had many of the same items.
He had still been frustrated when Teyla had practically pushed him into a jumper with her to travel to the mainland. He'd wandered around talking to villagers until he saw a young man creating trinkets out of a silver-like substance that seemed in ready supply on most planets in the Pegasus galaxy.
Was he ever thankful that his college girlfriend was an artsy chick and had spent a lot of her time dragging John to the metal smithing studio and teaching him how to lost was cast, use a kiln, and a jew saw. He had to admit, he had been skeptic until she had told him he would get to use a blowtorch.
And now the small silver medallions, carved with a simple "a" on one side and the "aturi" symbol on the other (except for Teyla's which was carved with an Athosian symbol that meant luck and health) hung on quite a few necks in the circle of drinking friends gathered here tonight.
They were the last remnants of the Chrismashannakwanazayule party that had been held in the "Art Room". Many of the others had either gone to bed or were off to make merry elsewhere with the underhandly dealt jugs of Athosian spirits.
"John!" yelled Aries drunkenly from across the small circle of people, "Keep drinking and stop thinking!"
Drunken cheers and something like "Wassail!" from Beckett prompted him to take another, though gentler, swig of the spirits.
Teyla took the bottle from him and poured a bit more into her own cup before passing it to Beckett. John raised his arm from where it sat between them and up around her shoulder. She lean back against it and snuggled towards him as Aries and Beckett continued their discussion on pagan festivities in ancient Great Britain.
Warmth spread through his body, the kind warmth of alcohol.
Well, that and Teyla being really, really close.
He was attracted to her and every time they fought with those damn sticks, he found it less like practice and more like flirting. It was rather odd and quite discomforting as he'd found himself more than once "unable" to continue and retain his dignity.
Both times, Teyla had grinned a bit too much not to have noticed anything.
It was just so damn confusing. He shouldn't be fraternizing with a lower officer, not that anything Teyla and him did was fraternizing, but at the same time she wasn't really a part of the military. She wasn't even from his planet!
Which begged another question. What was going to happen if they ever got the Stargate to work again and they went home?
And it wasn't just a selfish question. He wasn't the only Atlantian who'd found love (okay, good ole' lust on his part) across the galaxy. Some of the Athosian women were even pregnant to the Atlantis crew, much to Weir's chagrin, and a few of Sheppard's officers had already approached him and asked him for his permission to get married.
God forbid, they would ever have to leave their wives and loved ones behind. Many had already left behind people on Earth.
His hand tightened on Teyla's shoulder and she looked up at him before continuing her conversation with a very drunk Ford and McKay.
He took in the group, still pondering consequences as he surveyed the small band of people who seemed to have become his family on Atlantis.
Beckett and Aries where sitting across from him. Aries had situated herself between Beckett's legs and had leaned back against his chest, one hand in his, the other making gestures in the air.
Beckett was smiling softly as he listened to her, his left hand stroking her hair.
Funny, how Aries had only mentioned them being friends.
That girl gets what she wants.
Aries and him had become good friends after a few weeks. She had showed up at his door with a bar of carefully saved chocolate she had hoarded for a special occasion, or a "really bad PMS day" she had said, the day after they'd met and John had badly hurt his knee. They had split it on one of the balconies near his room that overlooked the clear sea, talking about love, life, and home while savoring the sweetness of a chocolate bar that had been made millions of light years away.
Since then, she'd easily joined the regulars (though with some resistance from Rodney); McKay, Teyla, Ford, Beckett, himself, Zelenka, Peter, and a few others that floated in and out, including Dr. Weir.
Zelenka had begged off the rowdy drinking to go with "home" with one of the female scienctists. Peter looked positively exhausted and had gone to bed quite early. Weir had left a little later, proclaiming she couldn't handle her alcohol very well and that she had a migraine. Beckett, in the quickest sobering up John had ever seen, had jumped up and offered to get her some migraine pills from the infirmary. Weir had shrugged him off and gone back to her room.
He worried about her. She seemed cut off and intentionally so. She maintained strong relationships with Team 1, but the rest of the base seemed to have no more than a practical working relationship with her. John chalked it up to having to be military as a non-military and the fact that she had left someone behind.
Not that all of the rest of us didn't. But, it her case, it's different.
He turned his attention back to the conversation at hand.
"Iowa sunsets," said Aries, a dreamy look on her face.
Rodney snorted, "Iowa? Sunsets?"
"Hey! I grew up there!"
Ford snorted as well, "Now that explains a lot."
John shrugged, lifting hands in mock defeat as Aries looked to him for help, "They have good college football."
"Thank you!" said Aries, huffily, as Carson rolled his eyes behind her. It was obvious to John that he heard this all before.
"What is Iowa?" asked Teyla, looking thoroughly confused.
John turned to her, "It's a state in the middle of the United States. It's known best as a farming state…"
"They're all hicks," said McKay before taking another swig from his cup.
Aries sighed and shook her finger at McKay, "Don't be talking, Canada! It's a very nice place with very kind people. They have the beautiful sunsets there as well."
John could see her eyes leaving Atlantis and traveling back to the image of the sunsets ingrained on her brain.
"It was like oil slicks on puddles, the gentlest colors of purple and pink and orange. My house was on a hill that overlooked the west, where the sun sets, and every fall night was an explosion of color that even Van Gogh would've been frustrated at in replicating," she said quietly, everyone's attention on her.
"It's sounds beautiful," said Teyla.
Aries cleared her throat, her eyes bright with a combination of alcohol and emotion, "Aye, that it is. I miss it a lot, even though I haven't lived there since I was thirteen."
The group descended into silence for a moment, the only sounds Beckett pouring more into Aries's cup.
"I miss my apartment," Sheppard said, covering his cup with his hand and shaking his head as Beckett offered him a refill. He was a total lightweight when it came to hard liquor, though he very admitted it.
"Why?" Ford questioned, holding out his cup to Beckett to refill.
John shrugged, adjusting his arm that lying over Teyla's shoulder, "I don't know. I guess it's just, nothing here reminds me of anything."
"What do you mean?" asked Ford, handing Carson McKay's cup to refill.
"I mean, nothing here means anything to me. Like, stupid stuff. Photos. Scratches on my walls that I made by throwing my shoes at it. Paint colors I spent weeks picking out," John said, struggling for the words to describe the feeling that seemed to haunt him.
Carson nodded, "I know what you mean. The littlest things. My favorite chair, how all the leather was cracked and comfortable."
"Fabric your mom helped you pick out for your sofa," interjected Aries.
"All the drunken notes that my friends stuck on my refrigerator," Ford offered.
McKay hiccupped and said, "My cat…and how you had to kick my washing machine door to get the door to stay shut."
Aries sighed longingly, "My biscuit of an editor."
"My grandmother's voice on my answering machine."
"Buying things at malls."
"What? We were all thinking it, Scotland!"
"I am truly confused."
John laughed and ruffled Teyla's hair, "I explain it when I'm way less drunk."
She lifting an eyebrow and grinned at him, "I think I have an idea."
John grinned back and pulled her every so slightly closer to him as he let the warmth of drunken friendship wash over him and the cold bite of his former life slip away.
I like this. I like it a lot. Next time, I am hoping mission! Maybe. I'm not sure. Okay, so maybe one more before the mission. Yes, Carson and Aries will develop. Not sure where to yet. Will probably have some Weir and McKay (I love him, but have to figure out how to reconcile him and Aries first) next time in the story. (Not as a couple, just that they haven't gotten a lot of face time, I'm not a big McWeir fan.)
More John and Teyla hinted ness. Very unlikely they will hook up in a permanent sense. My feeling on that is that relationship is going to simmer FOREVER and I won't be the one to hurry it up.
More John angst on the way.
Oh, and John's metal smithing abilities? Seemed like a random talent he would have and I took metal smithing in high school and guys LOOOOVED playing with solder and blow torches. Seemed like a tasty fit.
Oh, and thanks to Snow'sLuckyCat for the idea to call McKay "Canada"! Yeah for annoying Rodney!
The next part will be titled Past Perfect.