Show: Stargate Atlantis
Summary: The Atlantis crew decides to wind down after a very long week…and Sheppard's bringing the popcorn. A fluffy little bit of Shep/Teyla and some McKay/Weir. Season one.
Disclaimer: Yeah, don't own "Jaws" or "Stargate Atlantis", but I don't mean any harm in writing these stories. It's just fun to pretend the characters are all mine for a little while (bwahaha!).
Author's Note: Hey guys! Yup, yup, only two days to "Conversion" and I am barely containing ecstatic squeals…oh, crap, there they go again. Never mind. Um, yeah, just a little piece of fluff that I decided to work on…instead of my calculus and chemistry. I really know how to prioritize stuff. Just kidding! I'm actually a neurotic, obsessive, overly-organized freak, so my homework is done, alphabetized, and ready to go. Yeah, I'm kind of a freak like that. And the Sheppard/Teyla stuff is toward the end, so be patient. It's good, I promise!
Elizabeth Weir sighed, tiredly pressing her palms to her eyes. The puddle jumper hummed softly as she and the crew skimmed over the planet's surface. Trade negotiations on this planet had taken much longer than was initially expected – after days of having their polite, conservative offers rejected, they had been tipped off that the tradition on this planet was to bid the highest sum that you would be willing to pay. Apparently, putting all of your cards on the table at once was considered a way to avoid swindle and establish trust. It was misunderstandings like this that made her feel as though she were flying by the seat of her pants through the Pegasus Galaxy more often than not. Still, they had managed to ensure that the city would have a stockpile of fresh water for at least the next year to give them a backup for the desalination system, so she supposed the trip hadn't been for nothing.
She leaned back in her seat and gazed around the jumper's cabin. The stress of the past few days had evidently begun to wear on the crew. Sheppard was slouched over the jumper's controls, irritably punching at several buttons when they began to flash. Ford was barely suppressing yawns in the co-pilot's chair beside him, hardly reacting to John's annoyed aura. Weir glanced over at Teyla and smiled. The Athosian was curled up in one of the other seats, knees folded up to her chest and head resting on top. She was sound asleep, though she still limply clutched her knapsack with one hand. Weir reached over and gently tugged it out of her grasp – Teyla didn't even stir. She then cast a glance back toward Rodney, who was being incredibly silent, quite out of character for the usually talkative scientist. He was lying on the floor with a book, which he didn't seem to have noticed was upside down. Weir smiled as she watched his eyelids droop though he continued to stubbornly pretend he was still reading.
"Rodney," she whispered. His eyes slowly flicked to hers with the sluggish response of exhaustion. "Put the book down."
"If you insist," he said, with remarkably little argument, and immediately dozed off, snoring softly.
Weir shook her head in amazement and finally scooted forward to Sheppard and Ford. "Is it just me, or is everyone a little worn out?"
Unsuccessfully smothering another yawn, Ford asked, "What do you mean?" She turned and gestured behind her at their sleeping friends. He laughed, and Sheppard also cast a glance over his shoulder, smiling a little at the sight. Turning back to the controls, however, his brow immediately furrowed and his glower set back into place.
Elizabeth sighed in an exasperated manner – her mind was made up. "I hate to do this to you gentlemen, but this calls for desperate measures. Tonight, we're all gearing up for Mandatory Fun Night." The other two suddenly wore puzzled, suspicious expressions. "After Carson checks us out and after we all take a solid nap…" Sheppard's mouth opened in protest, so she immediately amended, "Think of it as an order, John. Now after we all get some sleep time in, everyone is going to have fun. And that's another order."
He still wore a faintly bemused expression. "So what's the plan for…Mandatory Fun?"
She settled back in her chair with a self-satisfied smile. "I have it all figured out."
Sheppard shuffled down the hallway toward his quarters, feeling like the living dead. He had no idea what medications Beckett had given to him during his post off-world examination, but he felt even more tired than he had when he'd arrived. Upon reaching the door he was surprised to see a piece of paper taped at eye level. Shifting his gear to one arm, he pulled it off the door. He recognized Elizabeth's neat script, though he rarely had ever seen her use teal and pink magic markers before. It was an invitation formally inviting/ordering him to attend "The First Annual Atlantis Post-Mission Movie Night". She'd drawn little balloons and smiley faces around the edges and left him a small P.S. at the bottom of the invitation – "Please bring popcorn."
He shook his head in amazement. It was certainly going to be an interesting night. Walking inside, he dumped his equipment on the floor and tossed the invitation on a nearby coffee table. Barely pausing to unlace his boots, he flopped onto the bed fast asleep.
Later that evening, John emerged from his quarters having changed into some comfortable clothes and carrying a huge tub of popcorn. He felt thoroughly refreshed after his nap and was ready to face whatever Dr. Weir had planned for "fun". As he passed Teyla's quarters, the door slid open, and she stepped out into the hallway and gave him a smile. She had changed from her crumpled uniform into a simple, flowing dress, and her eyes were bright from sleep.
"Let me guess. You got an invitation, too," he said, falling into step beside her.
Teyla nodded. "Yes, Dr. Weir did ask me to come tonight for a…movie?" she asked uncertainly. At his reassuring smile, she continued, "I do not know what to expect. Is it similar to football?"
Sheppard glanced at her curiously. "Teyla, have you ever seen a movie?" She shook her head, and he mimed utter shock. "Then, no it isn't like football." Her inquisitive expression told him he needed to go on. "Well, see, there's a story, and then there are people who pretend to be in the story…"
Elizabeth excitedly set out the bucket of sodas and glanced up to see Rodney walk into the lounge. He was carrying the tub of ice cream that she had asked him to bring from the galley and looking distinctly put out. Carefully approaching him, she gave him a smile and held out her arms for the ice cream. When he shoved the tub at her, she asked, "Rodney, is something wrong."
"Well, no, it's just…" he struggled. "That was the last tub of cookie dough."
"Oh." She smothered a grin at his anguish. "Tell you what – next time we're back on Earth, I'll take you out to get some more. Any kind you want."
He seemed to perk up at this promise. "Really?"
"Absolutely. But until then, just know that you're giving a very noble sacrifice."
At that moment, Ford walked in with a DVD box, which he handed to Weir with great ceremony. "Zelenka didn't want to give it up. He says that those are pretty hard to come by where he comes from. He made me swear that nothing would happen to it."
"That nothing would happen to what?" McKay asked.
"His English copy of Jaws." At their quizzical expressions, Ford explained, "He said it's his favorite movie, and the fact that it's English…well, I guess it's hard to find in Russia."
"Zelenka isn't Russian," McKay said in puzzlement.
"Yeah, I know. Just repeating what he said. I figured I didn't want to ask," Ford replied.
Sheppard's voice could suddenly be heard from down the hall. They turned to see him enter with Teyla, deep in conversation. "See, but that's what stuntmen are for. They're paid to do all of that kind of stuff – lighting themselves on fire, jumping off of buildings, car crashes. And then when the Oscars come…" he trailed off at the blank, confused look she wore. "Well, that's probably not important."
"Did you bring the popcorn?" Elizabeth asked. Sheppard nodded and set it down with a flourish. "Right. Well, if you'll all take your seats."
Ford immediately claimed an overstuffed armchair, and Rodney and Sheppard sat down on opposite ends of the couch. Teyla preferred the floor and sat with her back against John's knees, watching Weir's face expectantly.
"Thank all of you for coming. Umm, the only rules tonight are that we're all on a first name basis, no humming the Jaws theme song, and no throwing popcorn." She directed that last part at Ford, who threw up his hands in mock surprise. "Dr. Zelenka was kind enough to lend us our video for tonight, so I want all of you to thank him when you get the chance; it seems he brought a large collection of them from home." Sheppard gave a slight cough which sounded distinctly like 'bootleg'. "And…I've never seen this movie, so I don't want any of you giving it away for me!" She turned red and quickly sandwiched herself in between Sheppard and McKay, who were looking at her with amazement.
"You've never seen Jaws?" McKay asked in amazement. Sheppard openly gaped at her as she defiantly crossed her arms, still blushing furiously. "Did your parents lock you in closets or something as a kid?"
"Shut up," she said sweetly, giving him a clenched smile.
As the movie started, the five got comfortable, quickly working their way through the popcorn and ice cream, which Rodney continued to sigh about until Weir elbowed him in the ribs. Ford started to hum the theme song when the shark was about to attack for the second time, apparently forgetting one of the evening's only rules; Sheppard promptly smacked him in the face with a pillow. Both McKay and Sheppard could feel Weir jumping nervously whenever the shark appeared, and when he reared up out of the water to attack Roy Schneider's character, she actually gave a little shriek and buried her face in McKay's chest. Rodney, for his part, had the good graces to look a little embarrassed and very pleased.
Teyla, on the other hand, was sitting at Sheppard's feet in rapt attention. She was leaning toward the screen as though she could actually get closer to the story that way. Throughout the movie she kept looking up at him to ask whispered questions about the Earth references she didn't understand:
"Do you really have animals like that on Earth?"
"What is a mayor?"
"Why is that woman swimming with no clothes on?"
Sheppard found her fascinated, child-like wonder utterly endearing. Eventually he found himself merely watching her reaction to the film, smiling at her focus and seriousness. While Elizabeth continued to flinch whenever the shark made an appearance, Teyla sat up a little straighter, almost out of respect for the awesome, if terrifying, creature.
The end credits finally began to roll, and Sheppard looked around to survey the damage. Popcorn bits littered the floor and the tub of ice cream was completely empty and on the ottoman beside Ford's chair. He glanced over to the other end of the couch where Elizabeth was sitting quite close to Rodney, her head resting on his chest. McKay, having caught Sheppard looking at him, cleared his throat uncomfortably and tugged his arm from behind Weir's head.
"Well, I've got a lot of research to do tomorrow, so I'd better get going." He colored slightly and looked down at Elizabeth. "Do you…ummm…want me to walk you home?"
She smiled winningly at him. "I'd love an escort. I'll see you guys tomorrow." Rising, she waved at the others and headed out the door with Rodney.
Ford chuckled knowingly from his chair. "Good for him. Never thought Jaws was that type of movie, though. I guess I'm going to turn in too." He stood up and stretched with a yawn. "'Night John. Teyla."
They said their goodnights, and Sheppard sighed in contentment. Teyla looked up at him again with a smile. "The couch is getting cold. Come on up here," he said, patting the seat beside him.
She crawled up onto the sofa beside him. "Did you like the movie tonight?"
Her brow furrowed thoughtfully. "I believe I did. Dr. Weir did not seem to enjoy it, however."
John laughed. "Well, see that's the thing about movies. Sometimes it's fun to get scared, especially when you're with a lot of friends. She liked it just fine…it's just the kind of story that scares you a little."
He could see her struggling to understand. "So movies are meant to provoke fear?"
"Not all of them…this is kind of hard to explain." He tried to gather his thoughts. "The Athosians tell stories, right?" She nodded. "That's kind of what movies do. All stories aren't scary, or happy, or sad, or funny – there are lots of different kinds."
"If there are happier movies, why do you choose one that gives you fear?"
Sheppard shrugged. "I guess it depends on the mood you're in. Being scared is kind of fun when you know it's not real. Movies can tell you stories about your history. And the chick flick kinds are good for dates."
"I do not understand what a…chick flick is," she said with a politely puzzled tone.
"Oh. Well, usually there's a guy and a girl in it, and you know that eventually they're going to end up together, but the whole movie is just a question of how that happens. Most women really like them, so they're good for dates." At Teyla's questioning face, he quickly explained, "A date's when two people go out together to learn more about each other. Usually they're interested in each other, and it gives them a chance to spend time together."
She nodded. "And this is supposed to lead to romantic affiliations?"
"You got it."
"But when you go to see a movie, should you not be paying attention to the story? Is it not difficult to…get to know one another while learning the characters and following the story?"
Sheppard leaned back, rubbing his forehead in a frustrated manner. "Teyla, when you're on a date, usually the movie isn't what you're interested in. The company is a little more important."
"And a movie is a good time to get to know your company?" she asked.
"Well…yeah. It sets the mood." He noticed her open her mouth with yet another question, so he sat up a little straighter. "Okay, the lights are dim in a theater like they are now, so it's kind of private. And usually guys will wait until their date is really interested in the movie to make their move."
"So it is a battle strategy?"
He grinned. "I could show you, if you're curious." Teyla considered this for a moment and gave him a slight tip of her head. Sheppard edged closer to her on the couch until they were sitting hip to hip. "Okay, usually the guy will kind of put his arm around the girl's shoulder like this." He extended his arm until it rested lightly on her shoulder.
"And then he pulls her a little closer to him so that they're touching." John gently pulled Teyla over so that she was fitted comfortably against him. She continued to watch him silently, and he found that he suddenly couldn't take his eyes away from her.
"What happens next?" she asked softly.
"After that…he usually waits to just the right moment. Then he leans in and does this." Sheppard carefully cupped her face in his palm and gently drew her closer, finally closing the distance himself. He kissed her with a tenderness and sincerity that was utterly new to him. Even more surprising, he felt her return it in a sweet, beautiful, and perfect response.
They slowly pulled away, silently gazing at each other, hardly wanting to speak for fear of wrecking the moment. Sheppard was about to lean in to see if she would accept him the second time, when she smiled. "This was very helpful. Thank you for taking the time to show me this custom."
She bowed her head in a thank you and began to collect herself to go, leaving John speechless. Suddenly, she paused and gave him another soft kiss, finally standing with a decisive nod. "I believe that next time the movie should be a…chick flick. Do you think that Dr. Weir would be in agreement?"
Sheppard grinned. "I'm sure we can convince her. If not…I'm sure we can borrow one from Zelenka. If you wanted to, that is?"
Teyla considered this. "That would be acceptable. I will see you tomorrow morning, John?"
"Absolutely." He watched her turn to go. "Teyla," he called. "Don't let the bed-sharks bite." She rewarded him with a generous smile and quietly left. Sheppard leaned back on the couch, utterly absorbed in his own thoughts. It certainly had been an interesting night.
Yay! Another one out of the way! Send me a review and I will love you forever and send you a cyber-pie, because they're the best kind.