Title: A Tale of Beer, Blondes and Bowling Shoes
Author: Starrylizard
Fandom: Stargate; Atlantis/Supernatural crossover
Rating: Gen, PG
Charaters: John Sheppard and Dean Winchester
Notes: For Katie and Rinne who liked my silly example AU idea of John Sheppard and Dean Winchester are competing in a ten pin bowling competition. The things I set myself up for. Thanks to Shannon for the beta.

John takes a swig of his beer, moving to punch his name in on the battered brown console. JOHN S.

"Your turn," he says, watching as the strange guy he'd met just hours earlier types his name in too. DEAN W. it reads.

They both shuffle their feet into the hired shoes and Dean winks at him. "I hope you're good for the money, because I'm going to wipe the floor with you," he says.

John only raises an eyebrow, giving a non-committal shrug. "I wouldn't be so sure of that."

Then they're picking out bowling balls - large, heavy, shiny and black - and John doesn't really have a clue what he's doing, but he's not about to admit it. He figures he can wing it. After space vampires, how hard could a little bowling be?

They'd met in the bar that evening. John had been trying to forget and it seemed Dean had been as well. They got to talking, discussing the black Impala that Dean had built practically from scratch. The guy didn't talk much, didn't seem able to talk about his line of work, but that suited John just fine. It wasn't like he could talk about his job either - flying spaceships in another galaxy, Ancient cities and life-sucking aliens – nope not something he could discuss.

One beer had turned into seven and pretty soon they had been bragging about their pool abilities and lamenting the lack of pool tables in the bar they were in. John isn't quite sure how the bowling alley had come into play, it was all a little fuzzy after beer number six or seven, but he is sure it was the beer he'd consumed that had finally convinced him it was a good idea.

Now John's eyes follow Dean as he picks out a ball. He notices it's the same sort John picked and that makes him feel more confident about his choice. John can see by the way Dean carries himself that he knows his way around some sort of combat training and he respects their continued silence on the topic of day-to-day. It was refreshing to talk cars anyway, and now there is bowling to concentrate on.

John lifts the ball, slotting the long fingers of his right hand into the pre-made holes and feeling the weight of the ball where it's cradled in his left. He stretches his shoulders and walks to the line, eyeing off the pins as if they are part of a target on a shooting range and the ball his gun. He can do this, sure. Taking a deep breath, he swings his arm back and rolls the ball down the lane with all the momentum he can muster for it. His bicep tingles slightly with the strain and the bowling ball runs perilously close to the gutter, knocking two pins down on its way through.

Dean snickers behind him, but John thinks he has some idea of what he did wrong and at least he hit something. Not too bad for a first go.

He tilts his head and thinks as he waits for his ball to be returned, listening to the clack of pins going down in the next lane. The hum that the rolling balls make remind him a little of the Jumper engines and the happy chatter and laughter that surrounds them fills him with images of the Atlantis mess hall. He's surprised though, when he finds Rodney's voice running through his mind barking equations for velocity and correct angles of momentum and it sets him to grinning.

The next shot earns him a spare and he pumps a fist lightly in victory, swigs more beer and turns to see Dean isn't watching at all - too busy flirting with a skinny blonde chick who giggles as she takes his order for French fries and more beer. John watches in amazement as Dean even pats her on the ass as she moves to walk away.

Dean turns to see John watching and he raises his hands in mock surrender, shrugging and mouthing "What?"

John just smiles and slouches against the ugly beige seats that face the score board, saying: "Your turn."

Dean looks at the score, one eyebrow quirking in surprise, before he goes to take his turn. He rolls a strike and is back in time to see the skinny blonde, now with friend, as they deliver the French fries and drinks and John helps himself without asking.

The game continues, turning into an intense competition filled with stoic glaring, manly posturing, head slaps and drawled insults …and that was just the flirting competition for the blonde and her honey-haired friend.

Eventually, John beats Dean by a handful of strikes, while the girls bring Dean an extra beer on the house and John thinks they're both happy with the outcome. As John watches Dean stumbles out of the building, a girl on each arm, saying "Girls, there's plenty for both of you," with a large smile on his face, John decides to stay and get one last beer before heading back to the base.

He realises to his surprise, as he turns away from the counter, that here, wearing smelly hired shoes, the tingly buzz of beer flowing through his veins, seated among complete strangers, a whole galaxy away from where he wants to be… Here, he feels a little like he's home.