Disclaimer: I do not own SGA of course, if I did, Sparky would have been canon. *grin* No money was made from this ficlit and no copyright infringement is intended. Any similarity to any story not my own is coincidence.

Title: In Vino Veritas
Genre: SGA - Sparky fluff, AU by default
Rating: PG; rated for alcohol use and snogging leading to an implied shag *grin*
Timeline: Sometime between "Echoes" and "Irresponsible"
Author's Notes: It has been long and long since I have written anything for SGA. Looks like I'm still trying to cling to Sparky, even after it all. *grin*


In Vino Veritas

"Elizabeth? What are you doing here?" Perhaps not the most eloquent of greetings John admitted to himself, but the sight of his casually dressed boss at his door, a bottle of wine and a couple of glasses in her hand, was not something he had ever expected to see.

"I mean, good evening Doctor Weir. Is there something you needed?"

She gave him a small lopsided smile.

"Would you like to try that one more time, John?"

He gave her a wry grin of his own.

"Evening, 'Lizaebth. Would you like to come in?"

John stepped aside giving her room to enter if she wanted. She did, looking around as she did so.

"It's neater than I thought," she commented lightly.

"You've thought about what my quarters look like? If I what... just tossed my uniform on the bed; had boxers strewn all over the place? " John asked, unable to keep from teasing her, flirting just at the edge of something, but not quite crossing the line completely. He smiled a little when he saw her blush slightly.

"What I meant is, I didn't think you'd have unpacked everything quite so quickly," she explained after only a moment's hesitation. "Especially after everything that's been happening."

She turned around to face John where he still stood by the door.

"I still have boxes stacked against the wall," she said. "I think the only things that I've had time to unpack are my computer and some of my clothes."

John looked significantly at the wine in Elizabeth's hand and she smiled slightly.

"And this," she conceded. "A gift from General O'Neil."

She set the wine bottle and glasses down on a small table near John's bed before picking up a slim leather bound book. She brushed her fingers over the smooth cover before setting the book back down unopened. John let her explore in silence, willing to wait for her.

Elizabeth's touch was careful, almost intimate as she brushed her fingertips over the guitar resting against the wall and the skateboard next to it. She cautiously let her fingers run over the most recent scuffs on John's military leather jacket where it hung casually over the back of a chair. And she studiously avoided touching the more obvious reminders of the violence that clung to his life; an extra pair of dog-tags, his gun, the tac-vest on his desk. Finally, she circled back to John's bed and the small table with the glasses on it.

Still, John waited quietly. He watched as Elizabeth ran her fingertip along the glass rim, making it whisper softly.

"I was so certain that I'd never be back here again," she murmured, barely loud enough for John to hear. "I thought that I had lost Atlantis. I thought I had lost..."

Elizabeth fell silent, her focus soft and distant.

"But here we are," John reassured her quietly.

She turned to him.

"Here we are," Elizabeth agreed just as quietly.

John stepped over to his friend and reached around her carefully. He picked the wine bottle up from the table and started to remove the already loosened cork.

"Back home," John added.

Elizabeth met the Colonel's eyes before nodding silently.

"Glasses?"

The Atlantean leader picked the wine glasses up carefully and held them out to be filled. The deep crimson wine glimmered in the lamplight as John poured a small measure into each glass before setting the bottle back down.

"To home?" He asked, tilting his glass slightly in Elizabeth's direction.

"To home," she agreed, touching her own glass to his lightly. The bright crystal made a small bell-like sound that echoed momentarily before fading into stillness.

John gestured to the empty bed and waited for Elizabeth to settle herself at the edge before sitting down next to her on the floor. She looked over to the empty chair and raised a single questioning eyebrow.

"Oh, this isn't a chair sipping wine," John answered her silent question. He took a sip of the deep red wine. "This is a sit on the floor with your best friend and talk into the wee hours of the morning sort of wine."

He bumped his shoulder against Elizabeth's leg companionably and she gave a small laugh in response before sliding down from the bed and settling herself next to the Colonel on the floor.

"I see," she replied softly, taking a sip of her own wine. "And what do we talk about?" Elizabeth asked after a few moments of light silence.

"Anything but work," John replied easily. "Nothing about damage repairs or status meetings; no mention of giant whales named Sam or oncoming storms. And the less said about Woosley or the IOA the better," he added with a small laugh.

Elizabeth smiled wryly. "That doesn't leave a lot to talk about."

John turned his head to look at her. "That leaves everything that's really important," he countered.

The Atlantean leader gave him a lonely sort of smile that made his heart ache. "Really important..." she echoed softly, her voice half questioning.

"Well, yeah," John said. "Like..." he replied slowly as if pondering something world altering. "When did you get that cute little tattoo?" He asked with a cheeky grin. He looked toward her back with a significant glance before again smiling broadly at the embarrassed flame coloring her normally light complexion.

"Colonel..."

"What?" John asked as innocently as he could, giving her what she had dubbed his 'puppy dog eyes' expression.

"I... how..." Elizabeth tried to respond before taking a sip of wine and lowering her eyes, effectively covering her sudden self consciousness and confusion. She tried to ignore the fact that John continued to look at her, waiting as if he could do so all night, and would, if it meant that she would answer him.

"I imagine you must have got sometime it in your reckless and impulsive youth," John supplied helpfully, still grinning. "As a wild teenager, rebelling against the world..." he continued blithely, occasionally pausing to take another sip of wine. "Or for some boyfriend in college, since we all know you're a hopeless romantic. Or maybe you got as that idealistic young diplomat, out to change the world..."

Elizabeth finally looked back up and over to John, smiling a little herself.

"You've been imagining scenarios about how I got the tattoo on the small of my back?" She asked, raising her eyebrow as she recovered, pleased to see John suddenly flustered.

"Well... I... that is..."

He raised his glass to take another sip of wine when he realized it was empty. He rose deftly to recover the bottle from the table before settling himself back down next to Elizabeth. The Colonel offered to refill her glass and she held it out to him.

"I guess I have," John admitted slowly as he poured wine first into Elizabeth's glass, and then his own. He set the bottle down on the floor next to his leg.

They sat in a deep silence for a moment before Elizabeth gently bumped her shoulder against John's.

"I guess that makes us even," she offered, her voice light. "Because I've been trying to figure out if you style your hair that way every morning, or if it's just as naturally unpredictable as you."

John's warm chuckle shivered through Elizabeth from shoulder to ankle where they pressed together with a companionable disregard for personal space.

"My mom used to despair over getting either of us to behave," he confessed.

"Well, at least it's not just me," the Atlantean leader replied under her breath before she could quite stop herself.

John's laugh made Elizabeth realize just what she had said and she was halfway through an apology when the Colonel stopped her with another chuckle and a cocky smile.

"I bet you were the best kind of kid; model student, always made your curfew, never busted up the car."

"Well..." Elizabeth said slowly, taking a sip of wine. "I wouldn't say that... exactly..."

"There is the tattoo," John said with a smile.

"There is that," Elizabeth agreed with her own small smile.

"You're not going to tell me, are you?" The Colonel asked. "When you got it."

"I didn't say that," the diplomat replied.

"Then you are going to tell me?"

"I didn't say that either," she countered with a small grin, rising up from the floor with just the hint of a wobble. She looked over to where John's guitar rested against the wall.

"May I?"

He nodded once and Elizabeth picked up the instrument carefully before settling herself cross-legged at the edge of the bed. She set her wineglass on the table and positioned the guitar gently in her lap, her hands seeking the proper placement over the strings. They fumbled slightly as Elizabeth tried to find the right notes, but after a couple of false starts, the diplomat's natural grace took over. Her fingers deftly coaxed a soft melody from the strings that she lay her voice against as carefully as a first time lover might have caressed the object of her affection.

"As the music, at the banquet... as the wine, before the meal... as the firelight in the night... so are you to me... As the ruby, in the setting... as the fruit, upon the tree... as the wind blows over the plains... so are you to me... As the wind blows over the plains... so are you to me..."

Elizabeth's fingers brushed the final notes out softly, causing them to linger a moment in the air before her hands stilled the strings of John's guitar.

"I didn't know you played."

"There's a lot you don't know about me," the Atlantean leader replied with a quiet smile.

"I'm starting to see that," John agreed, smiling himself as he shifted to see her better. "And I'm sure that just when I think I've got you figured all out, there'll be one more delightfully surprising thing to discover." His eyes gleamed playfully as he leaned forward a little, making certain that he had all her attention. "Do you know just how incredibly attractive that is to a guy like me?"

Suddenly, there wasn't nearly enough air in the room. Elizabeth took a deep breath.

"Like you?"

"Exactly..."

Slowly, John rose to his knees and pressed himself gently against hers. He brushed his fingertips over her hands before carefully taking the guitar from them. He set it aside.

"Incredibly attractive..." John murmured a mere moment before capturing her lips with his.

"John..." Elizabeth gasped when they finally took a breath apart.

"I'm sorry," he whispered, his lips still brushing hers. "I shouldn't have... I'm sorry, 'Lizabeth."

She smiled slowly against his mouth.

"I'm not," she replied sincerely.

"Lizabeth?"

She pulled back ever so slightly. "Maybe I should be," she conceded a bit reluctantly. "But I'm not," she confessed before coaxing him back into a kiss. Her hands slipped into his wild hair, pulling him as close as she possibly could before they finally took a moment once more to breathe.

"I thought I had lost you..." Elizabeth whispered. "And more than losing Atlantis..." she said slowly, biting her bottom lip with a nervous sort of thoughtfulness. "More than... Atlantis... I didn't know what to do about losing you. I ached over losing you."

"I didn't... I didn't know," John replied softly.

"I know. I'm sorry," Elizabeth said quietly. "I was just... I was just too scared before to let you know how much I wanted you."

"And now?"

She gave John a soft, vulnerable smile.

"I'm still scared," she confessed. "But I want you. And I want you to know that."

John smiled in return.

"Does that count as a delightful surprise?" Elizabeth asked lightly.

John's smile turned into a bright lop-sided grin. He gently lay her back on the bed, covering her with his warmth.

"Ever so much more than delightful, 'Lizabeth," John assured her with a caressing breath against her ear, causing Elizabeth to shiver. He trailed hot kisses down the slim column of her neck, letting his lips linger in the hollow of her throat.

"I want you too. I've wanted you for so long," John admitted into her soft skin with a kiss like a promise. "But..." he drawled, a smile finding his lips once again. "I still want to know when you got that sweet little tattoo."

Elizabeth laughed. "On revelation at a time, Colonel," she told him before drawing him down for another kiss. "One revelation at a time..."

FIN