Title: Just Your Typical Day
Characters: Ronon. Some Sheppard and a little Teyla.
Summary: What does Ronon do when he's not shooting bad guys? Request: Written for. Wildcat.
Word count: 2200
Disclaimer: None of them belong to me. No profit intended
Ronon wakes up before the morning light streams through his curtains. He gazes out the window, listening to the hum of the city and the waves of the ocean below. There are no clocks in his room; there's no need for them. Rodney gave him a watch one day muttering about the importance of punctuality. It's inside a drawer somewhere.
He used to tell time by the stars in the sky and the orbit of the sun. The passing of cycles had become meaningless, now he uses the calendar for frivolous dates. After a shower and a shave, he changes into loose fitting clothes for his morning routine.
Half his knife collection lays sprawled out on the animal skin of a defenka; he goes towards the table to admire them. Each one represents a place, a kill or a reward, all with their own story. He grabs two, slides them in his belt and heads out into the hall.
There are very few people out at this time, most members of the expedition tend to thrive at night. Ronon goes to bed late and rises early; it's a habit bred from not being able to stay at any one place. He waits outside Sheppard's quarters, stretching out his legs, allowing the acid to burn down his muscles.
The door slides open and the colonel walks out in sweat pants and t-shirt. "Ready?"
"Let's go towards the west pier."
That's Sheppard code for needing a long-exhausting run. Damp hair is a sign of a shower that wasn't able to vanquish red-rimmed eyes or the smudges underneath them.
They begin at a steady pace, past the habituated parts to the city and towards the darker bowels. Running is freedom and fresh air. It releases tension, expends energy and reinforces the body with life. This is a precious time of the day and he shares it only with the person beside him.
Sheppard huffs, taking a lead that is impossible to maintain. This is three times longer than their normal course.
Perspirations soaks the back of the colonel's shirt and drips down the side of his neck. Ronon feels the sting in his eyes from salt."We need a break."
Sheppard bends down, hands on his knees, face flushed. "...'Kay...I'll..give you a moment."
Ronon doesn't need one, but pretends, sucking down water from a bottle and handing it over to his team leader. "Here."
There is no need for small talk. Ronon really doesn't bother with that. You either speak your mind or purge things out. Holding onto stuff will only eat up your soul, make you worthless.
"Going to tell me what's wrong?"
"Nah... Maybe later."
That means never.
The firing range might offer a decent distraction, but they were both there yesterday. "You know Captain Elstrodt asked about you the other day. She's on Lorne's team so you know," he hints.
"I don't need a match maker, big guy."
Part of Ronon wants to argue that there is nothing wrong with needing companionship of that nature. Everyone longs to be wanted; there's more to life then merely surviving day-to-day.
Teyla would shake her head at his words, reminding him about Earth sayings concerning black pots and pans.
"I'll race you to the sector H43," Ronon challenges.
"Not in the mood to eat your dust."
"I'll tell McKay you were the one to reverse the temperature controls in his shower."
That earns him the glare of death.
"I'm too old for this," Sheppard complains.
Ronon pats him on the back. "I'll give you a head start."
Every morning after a run, his body hums, invigorated for his class. Five times a week Ronon has the pleasure of teaching Marines the fighting techniques of his people. The class is required for any newbies.
"This is not Earth. Your fighting tactics alone will not defeat a Wraith in hand-to-hand. If you want to live, then you will listen."
This normally gains the proper attention and anyone foolish enough to think otherwise are the first to be made an example of. Everyone who wants to go off-world must past this basic defensive course.
"We'll begin with how to avoid the feeding hand."
By the time Lorne pops by to observe the latest rookie batch, every soldier has matching bruises around their wrists from the exercises.
"How are things, today?" Lorne inquires, watching the Marines split off in teams of two.
Ronon adjusts a soldier's stance. "Too early to tell."
"A few of these guys have faced some pretty scary Milky Way things, so hopefully they'll adapt really fast," Lorne replies.
One of the smaller men demonstrates a fast take down and Ronon wants to step in and watch the move.
"I'll let you know later on in the week."
That's his goodbye and the major understands not to take it any other way. After an hour of trying to break bad habits in traditional human combat, he dismisses the class. Half the group bows to him and Ronon fights the urge to correct them. He understands it's a sign of respect and not supplication. It's a difficult thing to get used to.
A Corporal comes up to him still breathless from sparring. "Specialist Dex, sir."
"I heard you hold advanced classes. I was wondering how I could sign up for one?"
"Prove to me that you can handle it first." Ronon doesn't elaborate and the Marine nods with understanding in his eyes.
There is small group of men who have the distinction of being called dunkai. He has eight pupils who have advanced to the third level of Satedan training. That class is held shortly after the beginner's course and it includes lessons in knife handling, which is a personal favorite.
He never sought to be any kind of teacher, but his classes make a difference.
The only one he dreads are those designed for non-military people. Sheppard made him fit that in his schedule. It tries his patience and he bullies the colonel into helping him along with Teyla so he doesn't kill too many civilians.
Lunch always feels odd to him. To take precious time in the middle of the day when work or labor should be at going at full speed, seems kind of counter-productive. Eating is fuel for the body and mind. One large meal for preparation and dinner to re-charge before bed and relaxation. Like many things on Atlantis, he's gotten used to it, including waiting in line to pick out the selections.
"The meatloaf is very good today," the counter lady says. Her name is Mandy he thinks. "Okay."
The guy serving vegetables rolls his eyes as the lady gives him an extra portion. Ronon slams his tray loudly near him, earning a hurried ladle of peas and carrots. The mess hall is half-full which makes finding an empty table annoying. He zig zags past others to find one in the corner. He sits with his back to the wall in order to observe people coming and going.
Rodney accused him once of watching too many gangster movies, in which he replied. "Do you think you're being funny?"
Sheppard had laughed and said he needed to re-watch "Goodfellas" again because he screwed up the joke.
He shovels the meatloaf down because it's extra tangy today. He remembers hunting down animals and trying to roast them over a fire without attracting attention. Caves had been good for covering up the fumes, but there were many days of living off of raw meat. Rodney will complain that he takes too long in line thinking about what to pick out; he'll never understand the joy at having a choice.
"May I sit down?" Teyla asks.
"I'm already finished."
"Then I will still eat," she says smiling.
Ronon is not a fan of sitting around while people finish their meals in front of him. He actually has to be somewhere. "I told Zelenka I'd help him move stuff in his lab."
Teyla gets a bemused expression. "Really?"
"Do you think he can move things bigger them him?"
"He's going to give me chocolate bars and a thing of ice cream."
Now Teyla is appalled. "That's not fair."
Ronon smiles devilishly. "No it's not," he walks away chuckling, knowing she'll get him back.
It is useful to have a refrigerator with a freezer in his room. Originally the only things that took up space were a few articles of clothes. He can't recall who had insisted he keep something as trivial as a fridge. Now it protects a whole carton of strawberry ice cream.
He has five minutes to take a shower before attending class. Slipping in just before his lesson begins is nothing new. Dr. Poisga shakes her head before turning her attention to the overhead projector. "On Tuesday we went over the atomic number. If the atom is neutral and has five protons. How many electrons does it have?"
She pushes up her horn-rimmed glasses. "Good. And why is that?"
"Because the number of protons and electrons are the same if it is neutral."
"Correct. Now we're going to discuss isotopes."
Learning basic chemistry will help pave the way in understanding science and make him feel more useful if something happens to his weapon or the jumper when McKay isn't around. It will take time, but he wants to understand all the jargon used on a daily bases. It can be frustrating to be given explanations for everything when he knows all he has to do is learn it.
On Sateda emphasis had been in the military or skilled trades. It took him two years to learn English, studying alongside Teyla. He might not be able to breeze through Sheppard's book on waging war and
conducting peace, he'll be able to one day.
"I have a chart of elements that I want you to study this week. These are the building blocks for each type of matter."
The problem with science is it requires way too much memorization. Playing with the models last week had been fun, learning was cool when it was more hands on.
All the charts bore him. "I have to know all of these?"
"Yes. Don't worry, I won't force you to balance chemical equations since I'm sure you'll never need them in the field. This is like building a house. We must pour the foundation first before we put up the walls."
Dr. Poisga does this on her downtime on Tuesdays and Fridays if there are no missions. Math is taught only once a week since. He's fine with the normal stuff, complex numbers and science go together. In exchange for their help he shows his teachers how to fire a gun and defend themselves one-on-one.
No classes, no prying eyes. Just private tutoring.
There is a mission to PMX-331 tomorrow. They've never been to this planet before so there's an added aurora of danger. It's another random place from the Ancient database and there could be hostile natives, or giant animals that want to eat them. No matter the case, it his job to be completely alert. That means no movies in the rec room, however, the gym might beckon him after dinner.
The halls are busy; the night owls are out and about. Unless you have the late shift, this is down time for everyone else. The mess hall will be crowded so he'll check it out later. There has been a tune in his head; a wistful melody with double-eight notes. He thinks about writing it down and strumming it on his septa.
A part of him doesn't want to waste the time. Once a month they hold music stuff in the mess hall at night. He won't be one of those people who stands in front of the expedition to bang on a piano or read bad poetry. Teyla sings on occasion, which he'll listen to, though he never sees Sheppard sit there with his guitar.
Speaking of the colonel, his commanding officer is outside his door, palming the sensor.
"Not inside," he tells him.
Sheppard spins around, rubbing the back of his neck. "I can see that."
Ronon knows this is tricky ground; push or to allow things to unfold. He goes for a simple, "What's up?"
"I've got this new game. Don't worry. It's not Tiger Woods."
Computer games are not his thing. The Halo one is fun, but the real thing is much more satisfying. Sheppard doesn't come to his quarters at night unless there's something more going on. Whatever it is, this is a cover and he'll play along. He remembers how his CO was earlier this morning.
"Can't find McKay, huh?"
Sheppard shoves his hands in his pockets. "Maybe I should just--"
"Does it involve spells? Because I hate that whole power-up thing. Takes too long."
"No, promise. It'll be fun."
Famous last words.
Ronon grins. "You like to play these things because it's the only way you can beat me in anything competitive."
Sheppard visibly relaxes. Whatever is preying on his mind; he'll spill it casually while his eyes are glued to the screen. It doesn't matter. Ronon will be there to listen.
He follows Sheppard towards a lab, knowing this has been a good day.