Title: Pegasus Galaxy's Guide to Essential Trading
Pairings: Sheppard/Weir, Other (hinted at)
Disclaimer: I don't own Stargate Atlantis or any of its characters.
Spoilers: None. Set in Season 1.
Notes: Thanks to Rose Wilde Irish for suggestions, beta, and title. :)
"You want us to what?"
Elizabeth gazed at John evenly, ignoring the high-pitched tone to his voice. "I said, Major, that I want you to negotiate with the Eryians for condoms."
Puzzled, Teyla asked, "What is a 'condom'?"
John, Rodney, and Aiden, varying shades of embarrassment, refused to look at her. Elizabeth sighed, giving them exasperated "you are all twelve" looks. They squirmed.
"It's a form of birth control," Elizabeth said to Teyla.
"And it helps prevent certain diseases from spreading through sexual intercourse," Rodney added, sounding mostly normal but still quite red.
"Did Dr. Zelenka teach you that?" John asked, looking innocent.
Rodney gave him a disgusted look. "What are you, in high school?"
"Major! Rodney!" Elizabeth said loudly, giving a swift kick to John's shin underneath the table.
"Ow! Dammit." John rubbed his leg, glowering in Elizabeth's direction.
Rodney glared at John, Teyla gazed blankly at Rodney, and Aiden lay his forehead on the table.
Shaking her head, Teyla, still confused, turned back to Elizabeth. "What is birth control?"
"It prevents unwanted pregnancies," Elizabeth said.
Seeing Teyla's look, Rodney said: "The Athosians must have something that does the same thing."
Thinking for a moment, Teyla finally replied, "Every physical joining between two of my people is sacred, and we only pray to our Ancestors that during these joinings, we can be blessed with new life. Do those of you from Earth not rejoice in having young of your own?"
"Yes, many of us do," Elizabeth said. "But at this point in time, it's not appropriate for members of this expedition to have children. Particularly not cut off from Earth, in a galaxy overrun with Wraith."
John said, "But we brought condoms with us. A lot, actually. Are you saying we've already run out in five months?"
Serenely, Elizabeth said, "Yes."
Rodney and Aiden turned to stare at John.
"What?" he snapped defensively.
"Some of us," Elizabeth went on, deliberately not looking at John, "have been exceeding our weekly rations. Carson reported two months ago that the number of condoms was dwindling, which is when we put the ration system into effect. But now even that isn't working."
"Looks like Dr. Beckett just can't say no," Aiden observed.
"Carson's terrified of babies," Rodney said. "He just doesn't want to deal with them."
"In any case," Elizabeth interrupted, "the Eryians are one of the only advanced civilizations we've encountered in the Pegasus Galaxy, and given their sophistication in medicine and health care, perhaps they would have something we could use."
John stared. "You're serious about this?"
"I'm told," Elizabeth said, "that one of the council members has taken a liking to you, Major. Perhaps you can use that to your advantage."
"You have your orders," Elizabeth said, standing. "This meeting is over."
Aiden and Rodney fled- Aiden to get away from all of them, in all likelihood, and Rodney to Radek, who was hovering near the stairs, waiting for him. Teyla, looking vaguely troubled, glided out, no doubt baffled by the strange behaviors of Earthlings.
John, however, hadn't moved from his chair.
"If this is punishment for that mark I left on your neck last week, I said I was sorry-"
"Don't be silly, John," Elizabeth said. "I wouldn't hold a grudge against you, would I?"
John narrowed his eyes suspiciously. "Maybe," he said finally, deciding to let it slide. "Oh, and thanks, by the way. Now McKay and Ford think I've been swiping condoms from the infirmary."
Elizabeth smirked. "You have been using them, haven't you?"
"But I'm not the one who stole them."
"Technicalities," Elizabeth said dismissively. "What are you going to do, tell on me to Carson?"
John frowned. "You know I can't."
"Can't or won't?" Elizabeth taunted.
"Can't. You wouldn't sleep with me for a week."
"And that's if we still had condoms."
John groaned. "You're saying if we don't get more, then-"
Elizabeth raised an eyebrow. "That ready to be a father, are you?"
"Well, no, but-"
"Then good luck tomorrow." Elizabeth, giving him an beatific smile, kissed him briefly on the cheek and left.
John sighed, banging his head lightly against the table.
Evil. Elizabeth Weir was pure evil. It was a good thing he was madly in love with her, he decided, because after this, she was so going to owe him big time.
Fortunately, John had a few ideas in mind on payback. But first things first- surviving tomorrow. Not that he should be worried. He'd faced down enemy soldiers, life-sucking bugs, deadly hurricanes, and the Wraith. Surely this couldn't be that much worse...