Title: The Evil Package

Rating: G

Author: MacGateFan

Disclaimers: Nope, not mine!!


I glanced down at the package that was just delivered to me. Considering the fact that I don't really have anyone who would send me something, I was a little curious so I headed down to the mess hall for my coffee and to brag to Rodney about my gift. Once I arrived, I set the box on the table with a flourish.

Rodney looked up from his pancakes. "What's that?"

I shrugged. "Don't know. It arrived on the Daedalus."

"Aren't you gonna open it?"

I sat down, taking a sip of my coffee. "Eventually."

I watched Rodney eyeing the box with curiosity. He was as confused as I was about who it could be from, I could tell. Just as he was about to reach for it, I stood up and opened it. Inside was a small pile of wood and a note. I now felt Rodney's confused gaze on me.

"Well?"

I reached in the box, feeling something pinch my hand. It was probably a splinter. 'You'll get what you deserve'".

"Is that a good thing or a bad thing?" Rodney asked worriedly and suddenly grabbed my right hand. "Oh my God, something bit you!"

I glanced down at my hand. The bite looked like something I'd seen before, but I couldn't place it. That is, until I looked back into the box. I saw the familiar shape of an hourglass on the spider crawling among the wood.

Rodney shoved me out of the way to look inside and before I knew what was happening he had knocked the box off the table and crushed the spider under his shoe. "That's a black widow!! We need to get you to the infirmary! That bite can kill you!"

"My hero," I said sarcastically. "Lead the way then."

"What? Did you want that thing to bite me too? It had to be crushed!"

I chuckled as Rodney called out to someone to clean up the mess.


Rodney POV

I was sitting silently in the makeshift waiting area when Elizabeth and Major Lorne walked in. I stood up as they approached. "He was fine about 30 minutes ago, then BAM! Stomach pains, nausea and currently a seizure. Carson had to shove me out of the way..."

"What happened?" Elizabeth asked.

I explained the gift package and the small spider that had been crawling around in it. "Needless to say, I destroyed the creature. We are so going to have to create a customs department here! We can't just have random airmen handing out packages."

"They're not supposed to, Rodney," Elizabeth said. She turned to Lorne. "Have all packages recalled just in case and have Colonel Caldwell meet me in my office."

"Yes, Ma'am!"

Carson came over a few minutes after Lorne left. "He's stable and resting for the time being. The next 6 to 12 hours are going to be difficult, though. He's already starting to experience muscle cramps near the bite area."

"I can't believe this!" Elizabeth replied with a shudder. "Who would do such a thing?"

I could see the look of confusion on Carson's face and realized that he didn't know how Sheppard had come into contact with the spider. I explained it to him and he didn't look very happy.

"Bloody hell," he cursed. "As if we don't have enough to deal with around here!"

We all nodded in agreement. I looked back and forth between them and after five minutes of silence, I asked, "Carson, can I see him?"

"Aye, you can, but not for long."


JOHN POV

Ugh, I hate bugs. I never hated bugs, not even when I was a kid. I used to pick them up and throw them at people. I remember my Mom telling me I ate one before. Can't remember what kind, though.

I wince as another spasm flows through my arm. Whoever sent that to me is going to get the ass-kicking to end all ass-kickings. In fact, I'm going to sic Ronon on them!

Damn! I'm freezing. Where's Carson? I need another blanket. I open my eyes to see Rodney walking over. His face seems pale as he finally reaches the bed. "Rodney... Don't suppose you could get me another blanket?"

He nodded and went over to the linen cabinet. I don't know why it was taking him so long to grab one. To tell you the truth, my vision is not cooperating with me at the moment.

I feel like everything is blurry and going in slow motion. I take a deep breath and realize that I can't. Rodney has finally returned with a blanket. "C-can you get..."

I didn't even have to finish my sentence when Rodney rushed to get Carson. I don't remember ever feeling this dizzy before. I could hear Carson talking to me, but I couldn't make out what he was saying. I just wanted to sleep. Yeah, that sounded good... sleep.

I woke up sometime later not really sure how long I was out. Must have been awhile since it was around lunch time that I came in here and it's dark outside. That and the fact that the infirmary is so quiet.

I glance to my left to see Carson lounging precariously on a chair. If I call his name he's gonna fall off of it. A small twinge of pain erupts from my hand, but nothing I couldn't handle. Seems like the poison is finally leaving my system.

"Colonel."

I blinked. "How long have you been awake?"

"Not long," Carson replied as he reached for my wrist to take my pulse. "How are you feeling?"

"Small amounts of pain in my hand, but nothing as bad as earlier."

Carson nodded. "Good. I gave you some medication to counteract the venom. I also gave you some demoral for the pain. Seems like you're out of the woods, Colonel. I'd like you to remain here for the next day or so for observation."

"But Doc, I need to find out who sent that!"

"Already did that!" Rodney replied as he, Elizabeth, and Colonel Caldwell entered. "Apparently someone on Earth didn't like you."

I rolled my eyes. "Thank you, Rodney, as if I didn't know that already!"

Caldwell spoke up. "Does the name Raymond Bell mean anything to you?"

Raymond Bell? Oh God this is because I didn't defend him at his court martial. I didn't believe he was innocent... and he wasn't!

"Yeah, I may have known him."

"Bell sent you that lovely package from Leavenworth," Elizabeth said.

I stared at her in disbelief. The man must have sent it to the Air Force directly or there's no way it would have gotten to me.

"He must really be holding a grudge," Rodney commented. "What did you do to him?"

"Me? Why are you assuming I did anything to him?"

"Well..."

I shrugged. "I didn't defend him at his court martial. What can I say, I knew the guy was guilty."

"I think it's time Colonel Sheppard got some rest," Carson said after I attempted to hide a yawn.

"Yeah..." As they turned to leave, I called out to Rodney. "Hey, thanks for checking into that for me. I really appreciate it."

Rodney patted my shoulder. "You would have done the same for me."

And I would have.