June 10

Megan pulled up to the airport curb in her Aunt Bennie's gold SUV wondering if she would recognize her cousin John since she hadn't seen him in seven years. She put the vehicle in park and searched the scattered groupings thinking of the information her aunt had given her as music thumped from the speakers as she searched for her cousin. John's finally coming to a family reunion! He'll be at the airport around noon and he's bringing three friends. He says their group should be easy to spot. He'll have on an air force bomber jacket, two male friends: one friend is a scientist, one has long, corded hair, and the third is an exotic looking woman.

She spotted a group of four that had to be them. She opened the car door and stood up on the running board brushing her shoulder length reddish blonde streaked hair back. "Hey, John Sheppard!" she hollered, waving wildly causing her bracelets to clank and the sun to glint off her silver rings. She saw him look around; noticed how the woman and one of the men started somewhat defensively; and she noticed how the other man stared at her incredulously for a moment before turning to John, crossing his arms and mouthing what appeared to be 'you've got to be kidding?'

She saw John grin, clap the man on the back, grab up the luggage and start toward her. Laughing quietly, okay smirking, she hopped out of the SUV and sashayed around to open the rear hatch. At 5' 4" and 120 pounds she knew she caused eyes to turn in her tight black leggings and tie-dyed tunic belted around her tiny waist with a chunky silver and gold belt. So she was somewhat flamboyant that was who she was and she didn't mute her personality for anyone.

"Megan!" He had no choice but to hug her when she whooped and jumped into his arms. "I wondered who Bennie would rope into picking me up." John said with guarded eyes as he put her back on her feet hugging her tight for a moment before turning to help get the luggage loaded.

"Are you kidding?" She leaned against the side of the SUV. "I had to wrestle the keys from Paulie, out run Jamie and Steve, and threaten to ban Chris, Alan, and Morgan from the club before I could come pick up the elusive John Sheppard." She raked her hair back her long painted fingernails glittered with gold flecks in the sunlight.

John flushed and muttered, "Yeah, right," while his friends gave his quizzical looks. He cleared his throat. "Well, where are my manners? Megan this is Teyla Emmagen, Ronon Dex, and Rodney McKay. They are members of my team and my friends. Teyla, Ronon, Rodney, this is my cousin, Megan."

Hi's and hello's all said everyone loaded into the SUV. John held out his hand toward Megan wiggling his fingers.

Megan laughed and replied saucily, "Are you nuts? Aunt Bennie told me most emphatically to not let the daredevil behind the wheel of her precious SUV." She tripped around to the driver's side and hoisted her self into the seat.

John tried not to grin as he got into car. "I am not a daredevil. I don't know where you all get these ideas from."

"Hmmm, the mustang, the dirt bike, the Harley, the hang glider, the…." She pulled out into the slow airport traffic and headed for the highway on ramp. Megan heard murmurs behind her that sounded something like 'Wraith, Genii, Replicators' followed by chuckles.

"Okay, maybe I'm a little adventurous, but people do grow up and settle down."

"Yes, and you settled into combat chopper pilot." Megan shot him a look full of different emotions. "We worry about you, John." She said quietly laying one hand on his arm for a moment before returning her full attention to traffic. "I worry that one day seven years will become a lifetime of never knowing."

John slid a sharp glance in her direction before turning and quietly whispering "Highway" to Rodney who after a confused moment replied in a stage whisper, "Oh, yeah, right," and then Megan heard whispered conversation going back and forth behind her.

Look, umm," she glanced into the mirrors and merged into traffic. "I'm pretty up front about things so I'll just say this now and say everyone some uncomfortable moments. We know that you are all on classified missions and no offense, Ronon, Teyla, but it's obvious you aren't from the States. So ask whatever you need to ask and we'll answer the best we can and if we get too nosey," Megan smacked John's arm when he snorted. "Just tell us it's classified or that you can't say and we'll understand."

Megan kept flicking glances into the rearview mirror as parts of the conversation drifted to the front. Just where were these two from that they don't know about highways, restaurants, and shopping malls. Even backwards Africa knows about restaurants and mall. He's so animated his hands never stop and, boy, I love those eyes.

John glanced into the back tracking her gaze to…Rodney? He looked curiously at Megan. Her eyes flicked over to him and she flushed. She reached over and turned up the radio.

A song came on the radio and Megan began singing unconsciously tapping time out on the console between the seats as she sang 'Welcome To My Life'.

John smirked at the look on Rodney's face as he watched Megan move to the song while singing. The next five days might be more interesting than he originally thought it would be. "So, Megan, what are you up to these days?"

"Hmmm, oh, well, I just got back from taking Bryce to college. It doesn't seem possible that he's grown up." She shook her head fighting off the sense of loneliness. The band is still doing well. In fact, we're playing Friday night at Santana's. I'll give you all passes if you want to come out."

"Band? You're in a band?" Rodney leaned forward his sharp gaze sweeping her outfit again. "Makes sense," he murmured.

Megan laughed and John grinned mischievously. "What? You don't recognize her, Rodney?"

"Recog…?" He looked at John, confusion spread across his face. "Should I?"

John leaned back and looked out the window. "Does The Capture ring a bell?"

"The Capture?" Rodney turned toward her. "You're…" he snapped his fingers his face lighting up. "Megan Mercette."

Megan flushed. "Thanks John. I try for anonymity when I'm home. It's my downtime. Everyone around here treats me like they did before Capture became famous."

"Wow." Rodney sat back stunned until Teyla and Ronon's questioning look set him off. "Megan Mercette. The Capture. John's got all their CD's and now we know why Mr. I never talk about my past or family gets them so quickly." He reached forward and smacked the back of John's head.

"Hey," John glared and rubbed his head while Megan chuckled.

"I loaded their music onto your MP players. Country, Oldies, Alternative, Pop Rock they play a little of it all."

"Oh, yeah, now I know who you're talking about." Ronon rumbled.

"We really enjoy your music, Megan." Teyla said.

"Thanks." Megan glanced into the rearview mirror and caught Rodney staring at her. Flushing they both looked away.

They were out of town and cruising past small farms. Megan turned off the road onto a small paved road marked "Private Driveway". "A lot of the family is coming this year. Tina and her brood, Sam, Jordie and Helen and their family, Peter and Patti, Carl, Susie, Amy and Andrew with their families, my mom, Chris, Zack, Jenny and her current boyfriend Brett, and others I can't think of off the top of my head. Aunt Bennie has given Teyla a room of her own and bunked Ronon and Rodney together since she thought they might be uncomfortable sharing space with strangers. You," she grinned. "You have been bunked with Carl."

"Carl!" John yelped. "I thought Aunt Bennie was glad I was coming?"

Megan laughed. "She is. She's almost miffed that you missed the past six. She's also hurt that she didn't see you at your dad's funeral." Megan gave him a disappointed look. "You and he might not have been close, but he was her brother and you should have at least found time for a hug."

"Things got a little crazy." John ground out defensively.

"What's wrong with this Carl guy?" Ronon asked curiously to get the conversation away from sensitive topics.

"He talks more incessantly that McKay." John responded peevishly.

Ronon and Teyla chuckled. Rodney snapped, "I do not talk incessantly. I just have a lot of information to impart at times."

All three of his friends laughed and Rodney 'hmphfed' and glared out the window. Silence descended until the road curved and Aunt Bennie's came into view.

"John, you really need to open up a little more." Rodney muttered as he took in the rolling expanse of land, the tennis courts, volleyball and badminton pits, the small cottages, the horses and stables, and finally the sprawling two story house and the wooded lands behind the house.

"She didn't live here last time I saw her." John murmured stunned himself turning toward Megan.

"Bennie married Walter Torset five years ago." She sent John a 'you should feel guilty' look. "He died a year later of a massive coronary. She inherited everything since he had no living relatives. She surrounds herself with family now."

Megan parked the SUV and waited for them to get their luggage. Several dogs of various heritages swarmed them barking and yelping and wagging tags. Megan grinned and petted and roughhoused a little with them. She called them down after a moment and sent them on their way.

They followed Megan into a large foyer. "Bennie we're back!" She hollered down the hallway before turning back to them and pointing to the wall where a color map was pinned up. "The estate is fairly large so Bennie had this made for the reunion. It shows where everything is at including riding trails and fishing ponds, tennis courts, swimming pool, hot tubs, game room, etc. Feel free to use anything at any time day or night. Now if you'll…"

"Johnnie!" A plump older woman came hurrying down the hallway toward them. "It is about time you came to visit. I missed you at Charles' funeral."

"I'm real sorry about that Bennie."

"It's done with." She swept him into a bone-breaking hug that he returned awkwardly and then she stepped back. "Let me look at you. Hmpff, doesn't the Air Force ever feed you." She patted his arm. "Don't you worry any, love, a few days of Noreen's cooking and you'll be right as rain." A set of muffled guffaws caught her attention. "So these are your friends?"

John nodded. "Aunt Bennie, meet Teyla Emmagen, Rodney McKay, and Ronon Dex. Team, meet my Aunt Bennie."

"Glad to meet some of Johnnie's friends. Megan, you show them their rooms. I'm still trying to help Noreen get everything organized."

"Yes, ma'am, will do." Megan saluted cheekily. "Follow me." She turned and trotted up the stairs chattering at them the entire way about whom was coming and what was planned to eat on tonight, and things to do. She led them down to long halls and finally pointed out three rooms. "Teyla this one is yours; John you are next door with Carl; Ronon and Rodney are one door down from you on the left. There is a huge bathroom at the end of the hall that has a closet loaded with towels and such like. There is a laundry chute inside the closet so just drop whatever you want washed down it. If you want to do your own laundry, that's fine too."

Megan turned to look at them and decided they looked jetlagged. "Well, wherever you're coming from it seems to be in a very different time zone so I'll let y'all rest." She started off then snapped her fingers and turned back around. "Oh, knew I was forgetting something. Allergies. Anyone allergic to anything cause there are going to be a lot of folks here the next couple days and if anything needs to banned we want to get it posted from the get-go."

"Citrus." All four of them said and then gave embarrassed grins.

"I'm deathly allergic to citrus." Rodney clarified.

"Citrus. Glad I remembered to ask. I'll go tell Noreen right away. Believe me within the next twenty minutes anything with a touch of citrus with be back in the storage area clearly marked 'off limits' until the family reunion is over with."

"Really? With no fuss?"

"No fuss Rodney. We banned peanuts a week ago just to make sure. Oh, and I'll be making a run into town later for anything that's needed so just let Noreen or Bennie know." Megan breezily waved goodbye and disappeared down the hall.

Two hours later Rodney stopped, staring at the mob of people below him. Great! Loads of strangers and, arghh, kids – everywhere! The outrageous Megan would be better than this. He scanned the foyer for Megan, but didn't see her. Someone saw him looking around though and asked if they could help him. "I'm looking for Megan."

"She just went out the door headed for town. You should be able to catch her."

"Great." Rodney hurried down the stairs and out the door. "Megan," he shouted when he spotted her getting into a sweet looking red mustang convertible. Man she was hot!

Megan paused by her open car door and looked at him questioningly. He closed the distance between them. He had changed into a pair of faded jeans and a black t-shirt that emphasized his broad shoulder and made his blue eyes shine like glittering topazes. She swallowed hard and tried for nonchalant as heat swirled inside her.

"I was wondering if I could ride into town with you."

"If you give me a list…"

"Honestly not a big fan of crowds." He motioned back toward the house and looked at her pleadingly.

She chuckled. "Boy, are you in trouble."

"My family reunion, if we had one, would be about five people. Sheppard didn't tell us he was related to half the country. Perhaps I can find a place to hide. This place is huge after all."

At his pained expression she gave in. Surely she could keep her hands to her self while driving sixty miles an hour. "Get in." She slid behind the wheel and waited for him to get settled. She backed out of her parking spot and let the car glide into motion.

"This baby your Aunt Bennie's?" His hand caressed the leather interior trying to make small talk even though he was extremely bad at it.

"Nope. This baby is mine." She patted the dash proudly. "You'll want to be buckled up by the time we reach the main road." She grinned evilly.

He sent her a startled glance and saw the merriment dancing in her eyes. "John isn't the only who likes going fast I take it."

She turned onto the main road and laughed as she hit the gas and the mustang flew down the road. She heard a muttered 'crap' and a click of the seat belt. She kept hearing him mutter about inertial dampeners and shielding and death wishes running in the family. She glanced over at him. "I can hear you, ya know."

He turned wide blue eyes in her direction. "Yet not slowing down." He groused.

She sighed melodramatically. "Well, since we want you to be at ease here." She slowed down a tad.

"I'd be more at ease under seventy miles per hour." He quipped as they whipped around a curve and he put a hand on the dashboard.

She eased off the gas pedal until the odometer read 68mph and flashed a sassy grin at him.

"Definitely related." He grumbled, but she saw the slight grin on his face as he stared out the side.

"Well then treat me like you would John and we shouldn't have a problem."

She kept her eyes on the road, but was very aware of the long look he gave her and the way his gaze slowly traveled down her body and back up. They reached a stop sign and she turned to catch his stare letting the attraction she felt show just like the attraction he felt showed. The atmosphere in the car became charge with tension and her eyes traveled to his Adams apple when he swallowed; she realized he was staring at her mouth and then she met his gaze again. I am blatantly flirting with John's friend that I just met hours ago. She flushed and turned her attention back to the road switching on the radio as she sped down the road. "A female John Sheppard; no, no problem," she heard him murmur as he leaned his head back against the rest and closed his eyes. She grinned, a huge grin. The next five days were definitely not going to be boring.

Neither said anything else until they reached the town. "I've just got to get a few things from the grocery store for Noreen then we can get whatever you need." Megan said jumping out of the car.

"I, umm, actually don't need anything." He met her inquiring gaze with a very hesitant look.

She chuckled. "Oh. Well, then, you get to push the cart." She headed inside hips swaying gently. She heard him get out and in a few long strides was walking next to her. She pulled out the list amazed at how organized Noreen was. Everything on the list was listed according to location in the store.

She started in produce: apples, bananas, grapes, blackberries, watermelon, lettuce, cucumbers, onions, carrots. The list went on.

"So you've know John long?" Megan asked as she selected tomatoes.

"Almost four years. You? I mean I know you're cousins, but that doesn't mean you grew up together. I have cousins I've never met."

"We did mostly. After his mom died whenever his dad got a remote assignment John stayed with us."

"Ummm. You live at Bennie's?"

"We live in one of the bungalows behind the main house."

"We?" He put a cantaloupe in the cart.

"Me and Bryce and the band. Well, Bryce is at University of Arizona now." She paused at the bread looking lost for a moment before selecting several loaves.

"And Bryce is?"

"My son. He just turned eighteen last month." She tossed several bags of buns into the cart.

"And, umm, his dad…is he, umm, around?" Little Debbies, HoHos, and Rice Krispy Treats landed in the cart.

She eyed his selections and tossed in Zebra Cakes and Oatmeal Pies. "Scott." She paused and took a deep breath. "He died. Sixteen years ago."

"Oh, sor..."

"Don't." She looked him in the eyes. "I loved him, but it was a long time ago." She gave a small shrug and swallowed hard. "Life goes on."

"I think we need two carts." Rodney muttered. "Be right back." He hurried off to the front and when he returned found Megan had sorted the cart so more would fit and the shadow of pain that had smudged her eyes was gone. He moved his selections over to the second cart.

"So there's no one?"

"Nope. You?"

"No, no one special. I mean, there is someone I have dinner or lunch with on occasion, but we're not..." He waggled his hands.

Megan grinned. "Gotcha."

They moved down the aisle adding the canned goods on the list to the cart. Megan sang a few bars of the song the supermarket was playing. "Sorry," she said when she saw him eyeing her.

"Hey, free concert." Rodney grinned and Megan laughed running her hand through her hair her bracelets clanking together with the motion.

"So," Megan glanced down at the list and over at him. "What kind of movies do you like?"

"Science Fiction, Action, Comedy, an occasional Drama."

"In that order?" She swallowed her laughter at his concise run-down.

"Yes, in that…oh, you're laughing at me." He frowned, but didn't seem surprised.

Megan laid a hand on his arm. "Not at you; just enjoying your company."


"Yes, really. I can't stand non-opinionated people who like anything and everything. No substance to them. And my preferences are Sci-fi, Action, Girl Flicks, and Comedy, but I have a very selective idea of what's comedy and what's just plain stupid. So there are a lot of 'comedy' movies that I just don't like."

Rodney nodded sagely. "Jim Carrey movies – not funny."

"Exactly! And Leslie Neilson."

He nodded in agreement. "Now Bill and Ted…"


They laughed as they finished another aisle. "My philosophy is enjoy life; do what brings you pleasure as long as no one is hurt."

"Huh. Mine is since I'm smarter, my opinion is the one that counts." He gave her a superior glare then ruined the effect with a self-conscious grin.

Megan gave him contemplative look. "Smarter?"


"Than who?"

"Huh?" Rodney looked at her a little surprised for a second. "Everyone." Rodney pointed at himself. "Certified genius here."

"Modesty suits you." She replied drily.

Rodney looked like he was going to say something caustic then stopped when he saw the twinkle in her eyes and grinned. "Anyone who knows me will tell you I don't have a modest bone in my body."

She laughed. A full throated no holds barred laugh that slid heat through him. They shopped in silence awhile before he began the conversation again.


"I admit to reading purely for fun. Anne McCaffrey, Andre Norton, Mercedes Lackey, C.J. Cheryrhh, romances. "

"Science journals mostly, but I also like a good mystery."


He looked at as though surprised at the question. "Yes."

She silently chuckled and shook her head. "Geek."

"Hedonist." He snapped back without thinking.

She arched an eyebrow and chuckled, leaning against him slightly for a moment. He chuckled and surprised himself by taking a chance and sliding a hand around her waist to her hip drawing her close. She turned and looked up at him; he looked down at her and attraction sizzled between them. "Hedonist, huh?"

"Yes." His jaw jutted defiantly.

"Hmm." Before she could change her mind she reached up and tugged his head down and kissed him soundly. Then she grinned impishly and pushed her cart off.

He caught up with her at the checkout line. He cleared his throat. She glanced back; mischief danced in her eyes. "You are now officially on a five day vacation with a hedonist, Dr. McKay, who intends to enjoy your company to the utmost. So tell me now if you want me to back off."

"To the, umm, utmost?" He choked out; his eyes darkened at the innuendo.

She trailed a hand down his chest to his belt. "Yes." She purred. "Should I back off?" She fingered the belt buckle tugging slightly.

"No…no, no, no, no." He stuttered flushing.

"Excuse me, miss, are you ready to check out?" The cashier called out grinning at the two of them and Megan winked at Rodney and turned forward and began unloading her cart.

Neither said another word until they had paid for the groceries, loaded the car, and were back on the road.


She flicked a glance at him. "Don't overanalyze this Rodney."

"I'm, ah, not. It's just…" he trailed off unsure of how to continue. He stared out the side as she maneuvered through traffic. "Women usually go for John or Ronon."

"John's my cousin."

"And Ronon?"

"Ronon sca…seems too serious."

Megan felt his eyes on her and knew he didn't buy what she said. "I like you. We like the same things and you make me laugh."

"And Ronon is scary." He said it matter-of-factly.

"He's intimidating."

"Yeah, he is, but he's a softy underneath."

She slid an unconvinced look in his direction. "I'll just take your word on it. Besides, you're fun to talk too."

They reached the edge of town and spur of the moment she asked, "Want to drive?"

"You'd let me?!" His face lit up like a kid at Christmas time.

She pulled over and jumped out. In mere moments he was behind the wheel, adjusting the seat and mirrors, and grinning, a face-splitting grin. He eased out onto the road and set a fast, but cautious pace. "She handles like a dream."

"This road goes on for miles and miles through farmland and we have nothing that will spoil in the next hour or so."

Rodney grinned, caressed the leather dashboard, turned up the radio and pushed down the gas pedal. The mustang roared down the road and Megan relaxed in the passenger seat while the wind whipped her hair around and blew all thoughts of the past out of her mind. Eventually, Rodney sighed, slowed down, and turned around

She looked at him and with a soft smile slid across the seat until she was snuggled next to him. His arm went around her shoulders awkwardly. He drove back at a leisurely speed enjoying the feel of Megan snuggled against him chatting about inconsequential things while her hand traced designs on his thigh and made his body tighten and his mind want to disengage.

No sooner did he park the car than a dozen people were there helping unload the sacks. Once inside he headed upstairs.

"Rodney, where are you going?" John called after him having just appeared in the foyer.

"To get a shower." He growled. Soft laughter floated up after him amazingly not embarrassing him, but making his need for a cold shower even more urgent.

After a very cold shower, he came downstairs and joined everyone in the large family room. The adults were scattered around the huge room on sofas, loveseats, and plump chairs. Children could be heard playing outside, laughing and shrieking as they ran around.

"Sorry, Paulie, it's classified." Sheppard was saying as Rodney entered the room. "All I can say is we aren't based in the States."

"I wish I had the sort of job where I could just say 'it's classified' and get out of talking about work." Jordie said sarcastically.

"You wouldn't like our job." Ronon rumbled, looking intimidating.

Rodney took a seat in a chair next to Teyla. He glanced over at Megan and she winked and gave him a saucy grin. Flushing slightly he grinned back.

"Oh really? Why not?"

"People die."

"Ronon." John said warningly.

"What? Not a secret that you're military and do dangerous missions."

John's faced closed up. "No, it's not a secret."

"You've seen people die?" Susie asked.

"Have you killed someone?" Morgan asked at the same time.

A muscle in John's jaw jumped.

"We all have." Rodney snapped to spare John from answering when he saw all too familiar glint of guilt in his eyes. "Not pleasant and no we don't want to appease your morbid curiosity." All eyes turned toward him.

"But aren't you a scientist?" Megan asked confused.

"Yes." Rodney replied bluntly.

Megan saw the shadow of pain, horror, grief, and guilt chase across his eyes. "Helen," Megan turned toward Jordie's wife. "How's the new job going?"

"Great." Helen was glad to get off the subject of death. "its flexible hours so I can be home when the kids get home from school and very family orientated so no problem with doctor visits or teacher conferences."

"And she can work from home via modem if one of the kids gets sick." Jordie added.

"What exactly do you do?" Teyla asked.

"I work for a company that researches and designs playground and gym equipment for schools."

"That sounds fun."

"It is."

"Excuse me," Noreen stood in the doorway. "Dinner is ready."

They all went to the dining room and sat down at the long table. The children Rodney was glad to find out were eating at the picnic tables outside. They continued to chat about everyone's day to day lives and current events during the laid back meal.

Afterward, the ones with small children gathered them up for showers and bedtime while the others divided into various activities. Some went for walks, some the hot tub or the pool and others went for a late ride.

Rodney found himself in the game room with Bennie, Megan, and his team. The band members - Mickie, Julie, and Kat also wandered in. The music system was turned on and the pool table set up.

"C'mon Meg, me and Ronon against you and your choice." John wheedled.

"John, you now I'll just beat your butt."

"Don't be so sure." John said cockily.

Megan looked over at Rodney. He held up a hand, shaking his head. "I can't play well at all. You'd best choose someone else."

"Fine. Kat, come help me teach John and his friend a lesson."

"Glad too."

Rodney leaned against the bar and watched as the game progressed. John and Megan kept trading insults and critiquing each others shots.

"Goodness," Aunt Bennie remarked. "You'd think you two hadn't been separated for seven years the way you're going at each other."

She shook her head. "These two were always so competitive and trading cuts and insults was their version of a conversation."

"We had plenty of conversations that didn't involve insults, Bennie." John defended.

"Really? Refresh my memory then Johnnie."

"When she was eight." John said succinctly with a meaningful look.

"True, true you did help her through a difficult time. You were about the only one that could make her laugh."

"Yes, well, she is all grown now and he's still making me laugh." Megan said triumphantly as she called the pocket and sank the eight ball.

"Jet lag." John said making up an excuse. "In fact," he yawned, "I think I'll go to bed. See you all in the morning.

"I think I'll turn in too." Bennie got to her feet and walked out with John.

Ronon and Teyla looked at each other uncomfortably. They usually hung out with John and at least on Atlantis they knew what they could do and where they could go.

"You two can stay and watch movies or play games." Megan said sitting on the arm of the loveseat. "Or you could go swimming or sit in the hot tub. Go for a walk. Whatever you want. Noreen will fix you breakfast any time tomorrow morning so no rush in getting up. See you tomorrow. Night guys." She waved at the band who was still watching a movie. They waved back as she headed for the door.

Rodney followed her out into the night nervously. She had said she intended to enjoy his company, but he wasn't sure that she hadn't been teasing him. His fears were laid to rest as soon as the door closed behind them.

"Goodnight, Rodney." Teyla's amused voice followed him out and he flushed when he realized she had seen through his exit excuse.

Megan laced her arm through his. "Suffering from jet lag or up for a short walk?"

"I, um, a walk sounds nice." He stumbled over the words as she leaned slightly against him. He couldn't remember the last time a beautiful woman, okay any woman, had made a play for him.

They walked silently around the house, skirting the pool where they could hear some of the older children and adults still goofing around. She guided him down a stone pathway that curved around a high hedge...

"Where are we going?" He asked curiously. "Because as much as I like your company and I do. I really do." he assured her hurriedly. "John wasn't joking about jet lag. You wouldn't believe the time difference. I mean to me it's about three in the morning."

"Not far. My place." Megan answered.

"Your place?" His voice rose slightly.

She smiled in the dark. "Front porch swing. I wouldn't want to take advantage of an exhausted man."

"You wouldn't?" He sounded almost let down. "No, no, of course, you wouldn't."

"No. When I take advantage of you, I want you to be fully rested." She purred as they reached the bungalow. "Sit down, Rodney." She laughed lightly at his totally flustered countenance. "I'll get us something to drink."

She disappeared into the house and he could hear her moving around inside. A moment later music drifted out of the open door then she was back with two glasses of Blue Raspberry Kool-Aid. She handed him a glass and sat next to him on the swing.



"At what?"

"Technically I'm an astrophysicist."

"Technically? So what are you really?" Laughter laced her voice.

He shot her a haughty look. "You're laughing at me. Again."

"You're so tense. Relax. I like a man that can make me laugh." She shifted in the swing, drawing her legs up under her and leaning against him and resting her hand on his thigh.

"Recently I've done a lot of wormhole physics, new technology research, and, um, systems repairs." He informed her sounding somewhat irate and evasive at the same time. His arm slid off the back of the swing and around her shoulders. He glanced down at her not sure what to do. Well, his body knew what it wanted to do, but he was fairly certain she'd hit him if he tried it. On the other hand, though, she was snuggled up against him; her hand lightly stroking his thigh was causing his body to react as though an electrical current was running through it.

"You are thinking way too hard." She murmured looking up at him playfully.

He met her gaze. His eyes widen at the invitation in hers. Taking a deep breath, he leaned forward and kissed her.

With a low moan, she kissed him back. She had wanted to kiss him since the supermarket kiss. Encouraged by her response, he deepened the kiss wrapping his arms around her.

Carefully, she changed position so she could explore his body while continuing to kiss him. She was now laying in the swing supported by his arm. Her body thrummed with pleasure as he very expertly plundered her mouth.

When he finally rose for air, she stared at him breathlessly. "Wow."

His eyes were a midnight blue with desire. He ran a hand up her arm and across her collar bone to where her pulse was beating frantically at the base of her neck. She arched into his touch with a sigh. He leaned forward and began to gently nibble and suck at her lower lip while his hand moved slowly down to cup her breast.

His thumb rubbed her nipple until it was hard and puckered. She ran her fingers through the hair at the nape of his neck, tugging him closer still. His hand drifted lower to settle on her waist. His kiss became a nip and a glide across her lips. She was definitely glad she decided as desire thrummed through her, that she had decided to spend time with this man.

They heard her friends coming just in time to straighten up and get their breathing somewhat under control. When Mickie, Julie, and Kat rounded the shrubbery Rodney and Megan were sitting and swinging slightly.

No sooner than they had closed the door behind them than Rodney stood up. "I should go." He pointed vaguely over his shoulder toward the main house. "I should, um, get some sleep."

Megan stood up and tugged him down for another kiss. "Goodnight, Rodney." She turned and went inside. Inside, she melted against the door.

"That good, huh?" Mickie teased and the others chuckled.

Megan just grinned and sauntered off to bed.