Disclaimer: I do not own Stargate Atlantis.

A few hours later, in the Atlantis infirmary, Lt. Colonel Sheppard lay under heavy anesthesia. The surgery to remove the bullet and shrapnel had gone well and he was now sleeping for what Carson hoped would be the next few hours. By his side, was an exhausted and weary Dr. McKay. He had spent most of the surgery pacing up and down the floors of the waiting room refusing to debrief on the mission until Sheppard was awake. Once the Colonel has come out of surgery, the astrophysicist had taken the seat by his bedside and hadn't moved since.

"Rodney?" Carson said gently. He got no answer from the man. Rodney had been eerily quiet since John had been taken into surgery. It was almost as if he was in some sort of shock. "Rodney," Carson said a little louder, this time shaking his shoulder.


"Why don't you go and get something to eat? The Colonel shouldn't be up for another couple of hours. That'll give you time to get a meal, take a shower, and get some rest."

"He'll wake up sooner than that. He always does."

"I'll be here and so will Ronon and Teyla. He won't be alone," Carson told him. "You've been here for hours."

"A couple more hours won't hurt me."

Carson decided that he was going to have to try a different approach with the astrophysicist. "Ronon, will you please come here for a moment?."

"What do you need him for?"

"Ronon is going to escort you out of the infirmary and make sure you stay out."

"I don't need Conan the Barbarian to escort me anywhere. I am more than capable of walking out of here on my own!"

"Then, why don't you?"


"Fine," Carson said with a smile. "Come back in an hour. Not fifty-nine minutes, not fifty-eight. Sixty minutes. One whole hour. Got it?"

"What about fifty-nine minutes and forty-six seconds? Can I come back then?" Rodney asked sarcastically.

"Just for that, you can come back in an hour an a half. Don't whine. Don't talk. Just go!" Carson pointed to the infirmary door.

Rodney walked about mumbled something about sheep-sheering witchdoctor girly men who thought they were real scientists.

After the scientist left, Ronon looked at Beckett and then at Sheppard and back at Beckett. "So?"

"So, what?"

"He's not okay, is he?"

"Colonel Sheppard? He'll be fine. His surgery went very well. I managed to remove the bullet and all of the shrapnel. He is going to make a full recovery."

"I meant McKay."

"No, lad," Carson sighed. "He's not."

"Is there anything we can do for him, Dr. Beckett?" Teyla asked the concern evident in her voice.

"I'm afraid not," Carson said. "All we can do is give him time."

"I don't like waiting." Ronon folded his arms across his chest stubbornly.

"Neither do I, but there is nothing more we can do."

"I don't buy that."

"Ronon, there is obviously more to the story than we know. It might be wise to wait for Colonel Sheppard to wake up and find out what actually happened," Teyla suggested.

"I don't like waiting."

"I know that, but if the situation was reversed and you were in Rodney's position would you want to be bothered right now?"


"Then, we will wait for Colonel Sheppard to wake up before we do anything else," Teyla said. "I am going to get something to eat, would either of you like anything?"


"No thank you, love," Carson said. He tried to contain his laughter as Teyla left the room.

"What's so funny?" Ronon asked.

"Nothing, it's just, we Earthlings have a saying for what just happened."

"What is it?"

"I…well, maybe Colonel Sheppard can explain it to you when he wakes up."

"Whipped," a soft voice said from across the room.


"You're whipped," a very awake Lieutenant Colonel said from his bed.