Note: This takes place after Tracker.
God, if there was one thing Rodney wished he could do was go get drunk. He had challenged Ronon for Jennifer, and Ronon accepted. Sure it wasn't a duel at mid-night kind of challenge, but still.
"I am so screwed." He lamented to him himself.
There was just no way that Keller was going to choose him over Ronon. After all look at Ronon, he was tall, and strong, and athletic, and Rodney was well, not.
He started to go back to his quarters, but then abruptly turned around and went to one of his favorite secluded balconies. Now was the time to be alone, because the blackness of his mood radiated on his face as he walked by causing the others around him to walk just a little bit quicker.
One of the people who saw him was Sheppard, who unlike the rest of the masses, did an about turn and quickly followed the crusty Canadian.
By the time Sheppard met up with Rodney, he was already hunched over the railing. His pose one of defeat, Rodney couldn't see the spectacular sunset that reflected in the water before him.
Rodney jumped up suddenly and turned around. He tried to hide the look of guilt of being caught in a moment of emotional weakness, and failed.
"Colonel, um, no, I mean yes. Yes I'm fine." He crossed his arms in a defensive pose, and jutted his chin out in defiance.
"Sure, I can see that." Sheppard casually walked up next to him, and leaned against the railing in such an effortlessly cool way that just for a second Rodney hated him too. "Come on, spill."
He considered turning around, and just going to his quarters after all, but in a moment of what he might have called stupidity, he talked.
"Ronon's got designs of Jennifer." Rodney's stormy and petulant frown, changed to a look of defeat.
"So," He replied. "so before, I at least had a slight chance with her. Now sure, you might think that a girl might want brains before bronze but that's rarely the case. She'll take one look at those arms, and forget all about." He stopped, and trailed off before he referred to himself as ' the balding socially maladjusted scientist.'
"It would be nice you know, just once, for me to get the girl." He signed, and looked over the water away from Sheppard. "I mean really, what is it that I can offer her?"
Sheppard could have made a crack, or he could have walked away, but instead he offered the truth. Which was odd for Sheppard, because it seemed that his relationship with Rodney was mostly friendly jabs and teasing.
"You offered her life."
Rodney turned back to Sheppard, confusion on his face. "What?"
"When I ended up in the future, when I met the old you." He paused for a moment or two. "You didn't sacrifice 25 years of your life just so you could bring me back. Sure I was the missing piece to your puzzle, but I wasn't the reason, Keller was."
Rodney's look told Sheppard that he best continue with his point.
"In the other timeline, you and Jen hooked up. From what you told me, it was the happiest time in your life, until she got sick. Over exposure to the hoffen drug led to her getting cancer, the fatal kind. She made you promise not to try anything to get her back, but of course you did it anyways. You gave up your career, your friends, your family, and devoted your remaining life to figuring out a way to find me and bring me back, just to save her.
"So don't tell me that you can't offer her anything."
He had turned away from Sheppard again.
"We were together and you never told me?" Rodney huffed, and then scowled again. "That's all well and dandy, but I can't really go up Jen and say, 'choose me Jen, I'll re-order time if it means keeping you safe.' I mean, that's just a tad too arrogant, even for me."
John put his hand on Rodney's shoulder and made him look at him.
"All I'm saying is, don't count your self out just yet. You won her heart once, I'm sure, you know, if you try hard enough, you can do it again."
He then turned without another word and left Rodney to his own thoughts.
When Rodney was sure that John was well and truly gone, he turned back to the city and went to his room. Maybe John was right, maybe he shouldn't count himself out just yet. After all, Jennifer was brilliant, how much in common could she really have with a caveman?
He was moments away from his door, when he saw Ronon running around the corner, shirtless. He saw how all the women in the hall way stopped walking, and talking and just stared at him. As if Ronon were some hunky star from Baywatch, running in slow motion.
Oh yes, he was really competition against that.
"Please god, let there still be scotch in my closet." He mumbled to no-one as, has he entered his room, and then locked everyone else out. It was going to be a long night.