Title: One Day At A Time

Author: ShipperWriter

Summary: Atlantis is floating in San Francisco Bay. Something's gotta change.

Author's notes: First chapter is primarily romantic/humor/fluff between Rodney and Jennifer. Hope ya enjoy it!

Warnings: Spoilers for Season 5 finale … should watch it or know what happens before you read this; otherwise, I promise you, you will be lost.


A large number of people that normally walked across the Golden Gate Bridge were beginning to wonder why they never saw any boats sailing through the waters anymore. The television reports told them that there had been a chemical spill that was toxic and the United States Navy was assisting in the cleanup.

One scientist, an astrophysicist, heard of this report and smirked. He found it amusing that the American people would actually fall for that -- especially when the "toxic spill" was hiding one of the biggest secrets in the history of Earth.

And they would probably never know. Made his job much easier.

Rodney McKay was back on the balcony, overlooking the bay and noticing that the number of news choppers hovering near the site was increasing. He knew the armed forces would do what was needed to protect Atlantis; in the meantime, the IOA was deciding what to do with the Ancient city currently blocking all water traffic in San Francisco.

"Rodney, I've been looking for you," a soft voice called from behind him.

He smiled as Jennifer walked up behind him, wrapping her arms around his waist. She lightly kissed the back of his neck. "Woolsey wanted to see the senior staff members in the conference room. You never responded."

"I left my earpiece in my lab," he replied, still awestruck by the fact that the city had made it to Earth in one piece -- and that he was still alive.

Not to mention the beautiful doctor who had actually fallen in love with him.

Between that, being on Earth, and all the hell that they had gone though over the past four years, he wondered if he had indeed died early on in the expedition and was just dreaming all this up. Well, there was that one time John had pushed him off the balcony inside the Gate room … Elizabeth had almost keeled over in shock, Rodney remembered with a faint, sad smile.

"Hey," she said again, lightly jabbing him in the ribs.

"Hmm, oh uh, yes, why did Woolsey want to see us?"

"Well, he didn't give any specific reason," Jennifer informed him, "but I think that he wants our opinions on what to do with Atlantis. I assume that the IOA is getting pressure to move it out of the shipping channels."

This comment brought Rodney's PhD back into his brain after wandering around in locales unknown. The fact was, eventually the ZedPM would wear down and the cloak would fail, exposing the city to the harsh criticism of its descendants. "Well it would have to stay over water," Rodney intoned as he turned around and walked with Jennifer through the city. "I haven't studied the design in depth, but given the structures in the city it wasn't designed to be stationed on land."

"So wherever we go, there will always be someone keeping an eye out for us. I mean, I don't think that the government would let Atlantis ride on the open seas for the rest of its life, but it wouldn't want to create suspicion by constantly keeping it in an area under naval quarantine. Too many people would get apprehensive."

"Exactly. So where does the United States military move a ginormous floating-on-water city, someplace where no one can see it?" he asked, using his hands to gesture in front of him as he walked, creating a sweeping city hovering through the air as he walked.

Partway through his question, Jennifer tried feebly to cover her mouth and hold back a laugh, her feet stopping. Rodney continued a few feet past her, then stopped, not because his companion had halted, but because she had failed. "Are you laughing?" he asked, almost incredulously, turning around to look at her.

Still covering her mouth, she nodded in the affirmative, trying not to snort in laughter.

"Jennifer, you've lived on Atlantis for over two years now. Do you still find it that hard to believe that the self-supporting city floats on an ocean?"

"No, that is easy to understand. What I -- ahh, sorry -- what I'm having an hard time with is the fact that you, Meredith Rodney McKay -- yes, I did just say that -- the brilliant scientist who has saved the universe, I don't know, about, 90% of the time--"

"Hey, if we're going to be criticizing my abilities, let's make it realistic, okay? Say," he offered, cocking his head to the side and tucking his hands in his pockets, "99%."

"Rodney. You blew up a solar system."

His posture slumped as the patented McKay grimace appeared. "Fine. 95%."

"My point? You have a PhD and yet you use the word 'ginormous'? Rodney, is that even a word?"

"Sheppard to Keller."

Rodney shot the ceiling a thankful glare and muttered, "Thank God," as Jennifer touched the console on the wall.

"Yes, John."

"Did ya find McKay?"

"Yes, I did. Wounded ego and all," she replied, glancing at Rodney out of the corner of her eye.

Rodney smirked. "I'll let you get away with that. For now." Looking upward again for no reason, he said, "I'm here, Sheppard. What do you need?"

"At the moment, both of you in the conference room. That is, if you're done with your little lover's quarrel."

Rodney and Jennifer instantly shot each other a horrified look.

"Oh relax, I didn't hear anything. I just assumed that if you two weren't in a closet, which according to sensors you aren't, then you were disputing something. So get your butts in here before I start spreading more rumors. Sheppard out."

Jennifer turned and touched the console again, ending the conversation; Rodney began strutting purposefully towards the control tower. Allowing Jennifer to come up next to him and wrap an affectionate arm around his waist, he muttered, "I knew John started it."