Disclaimer – I own none of the Stargate franchise.
SPOILERS for Doppelganger, obviously. Enjoy!
A Lucky Shot
John and Ronon strode through the darkened gateroom, staffs swinging from their hands. John had a training bag over one shoulder. The people on night duty barely spared the two a glance as they walked by.
John shook his head. "I'm not sure what's crazier – that we're sparring in the middle of the night or that no one cares," he said.
Ronon frowned. "Why would they care?" He asked.
"Because it's the middle of the night," John said slowly and clearly. "Normal people don't spar in the middle of the night."
"We do," replied Ronon smoothly.
John snorted. "Yeah, and what does that say about us?" He asked. Ronon's mouth twitched but he didn't say anything. They kept walking.
Mid-night sparring sessions were becoming more and more common between them these days – they all had a lot on their minds.
"Where's Teyla, anyway?" Asked John. He had expected her to join them for the training session – she usually did, but she hadn't met him and Ronon. Come to think of it, John hadn't seen her since breakfast, when she had been talking about her dream.
"I haven't seen her all day," he added.
"She's asleep," Ronon replied as they neared the door of the gym.
John's eyebrows shot up. "Seriously?" He asked.
Ronon nodded. "Yeah, she got some pills from Je – Dr Keller," he said as he swiped his hand over the door control.
John froze mid-step and stared at the Satedan in shock. Ronon noticed his expression and paused just inside the gym. "What?" He asked.
"What was that?" Asked John, following Ronon through the door.
Ronon frowned. "What?" He asked.
John put down his bag, his eyes never leaving Ronon's face. "You almost said Jennifer," he clarified.
Ronon glared at John. "That's her name," he said defensively.
A smirk started to form on John's face. "Yeah, but since when are you on first name basis with her?" He asked.
"I'm not," Ronon said. His glare deepened as John's smirk widened. "What?"
John's smirk became a full-blown grin. "You like her," he accused gleefully.
Ronon turned away and walked to the middle of the room. "So we sparring or what?" He said.
John took a few steps towards Ronon, waving his sticks in the air in front of him. "No – no way, you don't get to just get away with that," he said. "You've got the hots for Dr Keller!"
Ronon turned back to John and folded his arms across his chest, still glaring. "So?" He asked.
John quirked an eyebrow and shrugged, glad that he wasn't denying it. "So… are you going to ask her out?" He asked.
Ronon looked slightly surprised at the suggestion. "Ask her out?"
John frowned. "Why not?" He asked.
"I don't know her," replied Ronon, dropping his arms to his sides.
John rolled his eyes. "That's the point of going out," he said. "To get to know her."
Ronon didn't look convinced. John took another step closer to Ronon.
"Seriously, buddy – go for it," he said seriously. "If you don't someone else is bound to."
That had Ronon's attention. "You think?" He asked.
John considered Dr Keller, and the looks he had noticed her getting from some of his guys in the infirmary just the day before. "Oh yeah," he told Ronon.
Ronon shifted from foot to foot, looking highly uncomfortable. "Well, maybe I… no, no," he said, shaking his head emphatically. "I can't. I can't just go up to her and… I don't know her."
John watched his friend, practically squirming with embarrassment and any trace of humour left his face. This wasn't a joke – Ronon really seriously liked her. And, thinking back to their conversation a few months ago about his almost-wife who had died on Sateda, John made up his mind then and there that he would do his best to help Ronon, all jokes aside.
"Okay," he said slowly. "Okay, so spend some time with her first. Make friends."
Ronon didn't look impressed by the suggestion, and John reconsidered the idea. He snapped his fingers.
"I know what you could do – fake an injury," he said. "Go to the infirmary with a fake injury."
Ronon stared at John.
John grinned. "That way you get her undivided attention and you can work your magic," he said.
Ronon's expression clearly showed John that he thought he was insane. "A fake injury?" He repeated.
John didn't care that Ronon clearly thought he had lost his mind – he knew the idea was good. "Yeah," he said enthusiastically. "Go and say you've got stomach ache or something."
Ronon raised an eyebrow, and John nodded. "Okay, no one's going to believe that from you," he said, frowning as he thought over this flaw in his plan. He shrugged. "You could actually injure yourself…"
"Not badly!" John said quickly. "Just… cut yourself accidentally-on-purpose or something."
There was a short silence, while Ronon and John stared at one another. "That's not a bad idea…" Ronon said after a few moments.
John managed to rein in his grin, and nodded solemnly. "Right," he said. He twirled one of his staffs. "You could use one of these – say that I got in a lucky shot or something."
Now it was Ronon's turn to smirk. "A lucky shot?" He asked.
John shrugged. "We have to try and keep it believable," he said.
Ronon gave him a small smile. "Okay – do it," he said.
John blinked. "What?"
"Hit me," said Ronon.
John's eyes widened. "Er… where?"
Ronon thought about it for a moment. "My head," he said eventually.
John blinked again. "You want me to hit you on the head?" He repeated stupidly.
"Yeah," said Ronon. He took a step closer and bowed his head. "And make it look convincing."
John tightened his grip on his staff but didn't move. "Seriously?"
"Yeah," said Ronon. He stood there with his head bowed for a few moments, but John still didn't move. He looked up at John, exasperated. "Come on, John, this was your idea."
John shifted uncomfortably. "Well, yeah, but…"
Ronon rolled his eyes. "Just do it!" He said.
John sighed. "Okay, hold still," he said. Ronon bowed his head again and John raised his staff, ready to strike. His arm fell back to his side.
Ronon stood up straight again and rolled his eyes.
"What if it causes a cerebral haemorrhage?" John asked.
"What's that?" Ronon asked.
John frowned. "It's a… it's when… okay I don't actually know what it is exactly, but I know it's bad," he said.
Ronon rolled his eyes again. "John –"
"I'm not sure this is such a good –"
Ronon raised his own staff and hit himself on the forehead.
"Woah!" John cried, stepping back.
Ronon staggered, looking slightly dazed. Then he shook his head and his eyes cleared. "How's it look?" He asked John.
John folded his arms as he looked at the deep cut over Ronon's eyebrow, already trickling blood down his cheek. "You need stitches," he said.
Ronon grinned. "Perfect," he said.
John shook his head. "You're crazy," he said.
"It was your idea," said Ronon. He grinned again. "Right, I'm going to the infirmary."
A sudden thought occurred to John as Ronon walked past him. "Ronon…"
Ronon stopped by the door to the gym. "What?" He asked.
"I've just realised… it's the middle of the night," said John. "She probably won't be there."
Realisation dawned on Ronon just as blood started to drip in front of his eye. He reached up and wiped it away with the back of his hand.
John shook his head and headed back over to where he'd dropped his bag. "Come on, let's go see if she's there," he said. "If she's not you can just go in the morning – that's the kind of thing you'd usually do anyway."
He turned back to Ronon, who looked slightly surprised. "You're coming too?" He asked.
John snorted. "Hell yeah!" He scoffed. "This I gotta see."
Ronon glared at him, and he grinned. "Don't worry, I'll make a quick exit," he said. "Besides, I'd walk you to the infirmary if you got injured. I'm nice like that."
John grinned again. "No problem."