Disclaimer – I own none of the Stargate franchise.
A/N – I wrote this a few months ago now, back when we were all still speculating on how John would react to the news… well, now we know. :-) In my mind, this takes place a few weeks after the events of Be All My Sins Remember'd. So… things are strained between John and Teyla because he wants to keep her off the front line, and there are lots of things still unsaid between them.
Please let me know what you think.
Drinking in the Dark
Ronon looked up sharply, a vague look of panic in his eyes. "Where?"
John shook his head as he threw himself into the armchair next to Ronon's. "No – just… women," he repeated darkly.
"Oh, right," Ronon said, lifting a bottle of something that looked homemade up to his lips. "Yeah."
"What are you drinking?" Asked John.
"I don't care," John cut him off. "Gimme some."
Ronon obediently handed over the bottle and John took a deep swig of it. It tasted vaguely like ale but much stronger.
"So what's wrong?" Ronon asked John.
"Nothing," John answered automatically. Ronon raised an eyebrow and stared at him, and John rolled his eyes. "Teyla's pissed at me," he grumbled.
There was a moment's silence, and John looked at him, waiting for a response. Ronon just shrugged and reached forward to take the bottle back off of John. "Why?" He asked.
"I have no idea!" John burst out. He gave a short, hollow laugh. "Gotta love the irony of it though – she's pissed at me. Ha!"
"Why is that ironic?" Ronon asked.
John snorted. "Because she's…" His voice trailed off and he shifted uncomfortably.
"Because she's pregnant?" Ronon asked.
John glared at him and snatched the bottle back. "So what's wrong with you?" He asked.
Ronon turned the glare back on him. "Nothing's wrong with me," he stated flatly.
"So why are you sitting in here drinking – er, what the hell is this stuff anyway?"
Ronon shrugged again. "Dunno," he said. "I found it in here."
"Okay…" John handed the bottle back to Ronon, beginning to feel that maybe it wasn't the best thing to drink copious amounts of. He looked around the dimly-lit rec room. Lord knows who left it in there.
"So why are you in here?" He asked Ronon again.
Ronon said something very quietly, but the bottle in front of his lips completely obscured his words.
"Pardon?" Said John.
Ronon lowered the bottle slowly and looked at the wall past John. "I'm hiding from Jennifer," he said.
John frowned. "Dr Keller?" He asked. "Why?"
Ronon was silent for a moment. "I asked her out," he said eventually.
John's eyebrows shot up into his hair. "What? Seriously?!"
"Yeah," said Ronon.
John took in the image of Ronon, sprawled on an armchair in the semi-dark with a bottle of unidentified alcohol in one hand.
"She say no?" He asked sympathetically.
The look that Ronon gave John conveyed to him that he was deeply insulted. "No! She said yes," he said.
Now John was confused. "So do you wanna cancel?" He asked.
Ronon shook his head vehemently. "No. No I don't."
"So why are you –"
"She – whenever I see her she… smiles at me."
John blinked. "And that's bad?"
Ronon was looking at the wall again. "She's looking forward to it," he said, as if that explained everything.
"Aren't you?" Asked John, still completely at sea.
"I – yeah, I am," he said. "But I… I haven't been with – I'm just…"
Realisation dawned on John at last. "You're still not sure you're ready," he said.
"I like her," Ronon said. He looked at John, as if to emphasise the point. "I really do," he said. "I don't want to hurt her…"
"Ronon… you're not going to," John said.
Ronon shook his head. "You don't know that," he said.
John started to disagree but stopped himself. "You're right, I don't," he said. "Let me put it this way – you won't intentionally hurt her."
Ronon shrugged slightly, conceding the point, but John could tell he wasn't convinced.
"Listen Ronon, it's been a long time since… you deserve this," he said. "And you're gonna kick yourself if you don't take a chance."
Ronon suddenly smiled, shaking his head again. There was something darkly unfriendly about the smile.
"What?" Asked John.
"I just can't believe that you are telling me to take a chance," Ronon replied, still shaking his head.
John frowned. "What's that supposed to mean?" John demanded.
Ronon looked at him, all traces of the smile gone. "You really don't know why Teyla is pissed at you?" He said.
John's eyes widened in shock and he stared at Ronon in silence, unable to think of anything to say in response to that. Ronon wasn't finished anyway.
"Ever since you found out Teyla was pregnant you've been acting like she's betrayed you or something," Ronon said. "And maybe in some twisted way you feel like that. But the truth is you don't have the right to feel that way because you've never taken a chance with Teyla. The thing is though, Teyla knows why you're taking it so hard, and it's annoying her because she knows better than anyone that you don't have the right to think that of her. It's not her fault she got pregnant. And even if it was, you'd still just have to accept it, because it's your fault the baby isn't yours. Not hers."
John's mouth was hanging slightly open. Ronon took another swig from the bottle, his eyes never leaving John's, silently challenging him to argue the point.
John stared back, his mouth in a thin line. He leaned forward and swiped the bottle back off of Ronon, and gulped down half the remaining contents.
He lowered the bottle and looked straight ahead at the wall in front of him, and leaned back against the cushions of the chair he sat in.
"Well, I guess we're both screwed then," he said.
John held the bottle back out to Ronon, who took it from him.
"Nice to know," he said quietly.
They finished the rest of the bottle off in silence.