This is just a quick, short bit of stupidity that I'll probably delete later. I certainly hope it's funny, but I don't know if it is..the angst bunnies have had ahold of me lately and my humor-dar has been rather off as a result.

I had this idea when watching Tim Gunn being interviewed for TV guide channel (which managed to stir up some old memories of my past mallrat antics), and it's stuck with me and refused to go away until I wrote it up. This story features two OCs, Lydia is mine (from the story 'Retribution!') and Crysta belongs to NenyaVilyaNenya (from the story 'Travels Of An UnSue Mary Sue') It isn't a necessity to read those two tales for this to make sense, but they are well worth a look. Hopefully, Nenya wont mind me borrowing Crysta yet again, but I couldn't see anyone else in this particular role.


Rodney McKay strode over to one of the mess hall tables and set his tray down. Usually, he would just have something delivered to his lab so that he could continue working while he chowed down, but today the lab was so busy there was no way he could have done that. There were assistants and lab techs running to and fro, checking on experiments and running calculations and being generally noisy and annoying, so he decided that eating in the mess hall would be infinitely more peaceful.

The table he chose to sit at only had two people seated at it, and both of them were bright enough to know not to disturb him while he ate. Besides, they were too busy chatting with one another to pay him any mind.

One of the women at his table he was quite familiar with and the other he had only spoken to a few times in passing. Lydia Winter, a physicist who had recently returned to Atlantis after leaving for six months (which had been the six most peaceful months he could remember) who had a nasty habit of trying to kill/maim/blackmail him was the one he knew rather well, and the other was Crysta Santella, a biochemist with a knack for obscure Star Trek trivia.

They didn't acknowledge him as he sat down at the table, which suited him just fine. They were having a heated debate on...something, and as much as he tried to concentrate on his lunch, some of their conversation trickled through and he found himself eavesdropping.

"I'm not going to ask him!" Santella exclaimed, acting as though whatever it was that Winter had suggested she ask was the most scandalous thing she'd ever heard.

"Oh come on, it's no worse than the 'Doctor Accent' debacle," Winter replied easily as she leaned back in her chair, crossing her arms over her chest, "Besides, if you don't ask him, how can you possibly prove your theory?"

It was about here that Rodney's interest was piqued, since Winter pestered him about various theories all the time, he figured it must have been something interesting.

"I never said I was going to prove it. It's a theory and it's going to stay a theory," Santella said as she poked a fork into her pasta salad, not looking at the physicist.

Winter's eyes glinted with something akin to mischief and Rodney found himself uncomfortable because of it. Whenever she twinkled that way, there was something not quite kosher afoot.

"I bet you five bucks you're wrong and I'm right."

"I don't gamble."

Winter snorted, "Yeah, right. I guess we girls play poker every Thursday without you then, do we?"

Santella sighed and set her fork back on her plate, "The point is moot, Lydia. Even if I did bet you, we'll never know whether or not I'm right, so just let it go."

"Oh, I think there's a way to find out."

Santella gaped at Winter, "No. Absolutely not."

"If you don't, I will. It's been bugging me for a while anyway, so I might as well make a little cash while simultaneously quenching my thirst for knowledge."

Santella narrowed her eyes at her lunch companion, "What are you, nuts?"

Winter laughed, "Is that a serious question? I thought we put the subject of my sanity-or lack thereof- to bed long ago, Crysta."

The physicist got up from her seat purposefully and strode across the room, Santella hissing after her anxiously, trying to keep her from her task, "Lydia! No!"

McKay watched with interest as Winter walked right up to Major Lorne and spoke to him. Santella, meanwhile, had put her face in her hand with a groan that expressed aggravation, disbelief and embarrassment.

Winter spoke with Lorne for about a minute, before she bounced across the room to slide back into her seat. Santella looked up at her, mortification mingling with shock in her expression, "I can't believe you did that."

Winter held out her hand and wiggled her fingers, "Pay up."

Santella's jaw dropped, "You mean to tell me you were right?"

"Yup," Winter replied as she was handed a five dollar bill by the astonished chemist, "I told you I can just tell these things. It's like my one super power."

"Yeah, well, I bet you're wrong about McKay," Santella replied, crossing her arms over her chest.

"Oh really?" Winter turned to McKay suddenly, "Hey, Rodney?"

He acted like he hadn't just been listening in on their conversation and looked up at her and snapped irritably from around a mouthful of sandwich, "Yes, what?"

He nearly choked and fell off his seat when she relayed her query, eyes shining in that nasty way they do when she was up to something, "Boxers, or briefs?"


A/N:I've done that. I swear to God. I just walked up to some random guy that my friends were theorizing about at the mall, and asked him straight out because I knew the subject would never come to rest unless they knew for sure.

I've done it more than once, actually, usually whilst hopped up on loads of caffeine and sugar (I get really very brave/foolish whenever huge amount of sugar and caffeine are is my gift, my curse), and each time, I've been proven right. I don't indulge in that sort of behavior much anymore though, it was kinda a teenager thing that I grew out of. Every once in a while I'll do something that daring, but it takes a package of pixie sticks and a gallon of Coke to convince me to do it these days.

I remind you once more that Crysta (even if she is a mite bit out of character here) belongs to NenyaVilyaNenya, and that Lydia, beastly little trouble maker that she is, belongs to me.