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Rodney knew there was something wrong with him. He hadn't felt this bad since he'd had mono. He was exhausted. He'd tossed and turned most of the night trying to get comfortable. At around three am he'd given it up as a bad job, taken a shower to try and reinvigorate his aching tired body, dressed and then headed to the mess.
He didn't make it that far. Nausea struck just as he was leaving the transporter. Wave upon wave, bubbling, gurgling, roiling…..Don't think about it, think of anything but the acid churning…..uh oh….
He made a dive for the nearest bathroom and only just made it as the contents of his stomach flowed up the wrong way.
At least when I had Mono I had the kiss first….urgh.
"Everything ok in there?"
Why did it have to be him…. "Yeaugh"
"Rodney? You eaten too much blue jell-o again?" John Sheppard asked as he peered around the door.
Wiping his mouth with the back of his hand Dr. McKay rose and headed to the washbasin. Cupping his hands, he gathered water in them and washed the sweat from his face. The next lot of water he sucked into his mouth swirled it around and spat it back out, washing the foul taste from his mouth.
His eyes caught Johns in the mirror and the pilots smirk disappeared. Although most thought Rodney a hypochondriac, John knew this time something was wrong. "Let's get you to the infirmary."
Rodney's only response was a weak nod, too scared to open his mouth just incase anything other than words came out.
They only managed to get ten feet from the bathroom though before Rodney collapsed on the floor.
Rodney came to just as he was being wheeled into the infirmary. Oh god, I fainted….what the hell is wrong with me. He groaned as Carson insisted on shining that god awful pen light into his eyes.
"I threw up, Carson, I passed out, what could you possibly hope to gain by blinding me as well?"
"Have you any other symptoms, Rodney?" the kind hearted Scot pulled up a stool and sat beside his friend's bed.
"I'm exhausted, can't get comfortable enough to sleep, can't drink coffee as even the smell of it makes me want to throw up. My throat is sore...although that could be from the repeated bouts of vomiting…."
"Repeated? How long has this bin goin' on fer, and more importantly why haven't ye bin ter see me before now?" The doctors accent becoming more pronounced as he questioned the man on the bed.
"Which one should I start with? Well the fatigue I guess about since we got to Atlantis but normally the caffeine keeps it at bay. Not sleeping, probably since I discovered vampires were real and going by the pseudonym of The Wraith. But the vomiting that's new. Maybe a few weeks or so, it comes and goes, so I thought maybe it was a food allergy to add to my ever expanding list. Hmmm food. I could really go a stack of pancakes now, smothered in maple syrup. Humph well I guess the nausea's gone. See I told you it comes and goes." He shrugged looking at the doctor hoping he'd get some answers. Beckett's face mirrored the Colonels earlier. Concern and sympathy by the bucket load, and thought McKay the look that says I'm glad its you and not me.
"First place to start is gonna be ter get some blood from ye."
Carson continued questioning Rodney as he rose and started to examine him. "Have you noticed any weight loss or swelling?" he asked as he checked the glands in Rodney's neck.
A shake of the head turned to a nod as something sprang into the physicists mind. "As for the weight loss quite the opposite actually, I seem to be putting on a few pounds. All though I don't know how with this reverse bulimia I seem to have developed."
"Reverse bulimia?" Carson asked.
"Come on, Carson, keep up. You know, throwing up first then gorging on food. Hmmm food. You couldn't send one of the nurses for those pancakes, could you? I promise to behave and let you stick the big needles where you like." The Canadian smiled in what he hoped was a sweet and innocent way. "As for swelling, my ankle swelled up the other day but I thought I'd maybe twisted it or something, I noticed it as I was going to bed, but it was gone by morning, so I thought it was nothing to worry about. Oh please, tell me it's nothing to worry about. I'm too young to have a life threatening illness, I've too many things left to do, I haven't even collected my Nobel prize yet, or had a date with Sam Carter. Although the former is more likely to occur than the date thing but hey I can live in hope. Oh god I'm not going to die am I? Carson?"
"Like I said Rodney I need to get some blood and run a few wee tests on it. Once I've taken a look at the results we'll know more but I'm sorry your gonna be nil by mouth until I know there's nothing seriously wrong." Turning from the bed Carson headed off to relay orders to his staff.
Twenty minutes later Rodney was sat up in his bed resplendent in pink scrubs an IV attached to his left hand and looking a lot better than he had in the bathroom when John had found him.
Being ill was not something most people did well. But Rodney had long ago perfected the art of whining about all ailments and injuries that could or would or had been inflicted upon him. The thing that was worrying John most at the moment was the fact that Rodney was silently waiting for Carson to return. Rodney and silent were not a good combination.
"McKay, it can't be that bad you already look ten times better than when I found you praying to the porcelain gods." Sheppard tried to boost his spirits.
McKay only glowered at the pilot and turned to the door just in time to see Carson returning with a smirk on his face. "I take it I'm not dying then? Oh no I am dying and your smirking cause I've only got minutes left. Oh god I'm gonna be dead in 5 minutes!" Tears started to flow uncontrollably down Rodney's face.
Carson's smile softened and reaching for the box on the nightstand, handed Rodney a Kleenex. "You're not dying lad, although when I tell you what the tests have found, you might wish you were."
"Well I haven't felt this bad since I had mono…Oh no I've got the Pegasus galaxy's version of mono and instead of my spleen rupturing my testicles will fall off... that's why your smirking isn't it…." The tears continued to flood from him.
"Rodney it's not mono. Although I must admit that was my first thought. When was the last time you were intimate with someone?"
"Oh of course only I could catch an STD billions of light years from earth. Although I thought Casanova over there would be first. As for intimate it's been since just after the super volcano erupted, five months give or take. Norina, their chief scientist wanted to personally thank me" a dreamy haze crossed Rodney's eyes as he remembered just how personal that thank you had got. Then anger replaced the haze. "That little witch. She's given me the Pegasus version of the clap. Oh god, please tell me it's not syphilis my minds too precious to lose like that. Oh no, no, no I can feel it already attacking my neural pathways. See its making me babble uncontrollably."
Beckett still hadn't lost the smirk completely from his face, "Rodney will you let me tell you what it is you are experiencing before your blood pressure skyrockets further and you give yourself an aneurism. That's it calm yourself, it won't do your condition any favours being this stressed. Right I have good news and bad news. The good being that your condition is not permanent, some the symptoms you are experiencing, especially the nausea will disappear soon, but the fatigue will linger for about four more months…"
"Months? I can't go on working like this for four more months, Carson; I'm barely functioning as it is. Radek can't keep picking up the slack for that long….."
"I'm afraid he'll have to, lad, because you're going to have to go on paternity leave soon."
"I'm what! Carson you need to get a girl pregnant to get paternity leave, no no no no no don't tell me that banshee that gave me this is back, pregnant and saying its mine…."
"Rodney! I'm telling you that you are pregnant. Don't ask me how but I will figure it out soon. For now we need to get you rehydrated, get a dating scan done and start you on some prenatal vitamins."
Beckett looked up from the tablet he had been writing on and saw the shocked expression on both Rodney and John's faces. The silence stretched out, feeling like that final moment when you realise your life will never be the same again, in Rodney's case his life wouldn't ever be the same again.
"I'm not ready to be a single mum!" Rodney shouted and then more tears sprung forth. "I hate kids, what if my baby hates me back, what if it turns out like me, oh god, what a horrible thought, a mini me running around. Oh no, what if …."
"Rodney calm down. Stress isn't good for someone in your condition. We have to find out how this happened. You're not exactly equipped right for this parental responsibility." As John spoke he rose and went to touch Rodney's belly.
"Hey still me here, Sheppard, ever heard of personal space. I now realise why my sister hated being pregnant. Everyone thinks they have the right to invade your space and touch you and me and touching don't mix so back off Colonel!"
Sheppard withdrew his hand so fast it was like he'd been burnt. "Sorry McKay, I was just curious."
"Well if you're that curious go find the siren that lured me into becoming the incubator for her hellspawn and tell her she can have it back." McKay spat angrily. Then promptly burst into tears again.
This is going to be the longest four months in the history of mankind, Sheppard thought to himself.