A/N: So, thisis the last chapter. So I'm happy that there is a conclusion and sad that it is over. Thank you Renisanz for patiently beta'ing for me, I have grown because of you.
Since this is the last chapter it would be awesome to hear what everyone thought of the chapter or the story as a whole.
Disclaimer: I do not own any part of Stargate Atlantis or it's wonderful characters.
Spoilers: Through Reunion in Season 4
On the timeline: Two weeks after Reunion – Season 4
19 – Every Other Reason
19 – Every Other Reason
Once Ronon had exited the mess hall with Jennifer following him, he'd taken her hand and led her straight to his room. She now watched him pace back and forth slowly in front of her, obviously deep in thought. She wasn't sure if she should wait him out, or help him start whatever it was he needed to say.
"I think I'm getting dizzy here." Jenn teased, catching his attention.
"What?" she heard the confusion in his voice as he stilled.
"Ronon, what's wrong?" she asked walking to him and placing a hand upon his arm.
He looked down into her concerned face and it made his chest tighten a bit. She was so beautiful. He wanted to kiss her on the spot, but it was time to set a few things straight. If this went as he hoped, he'd still get a chance to kiss her before they had to get to the gate for the mission.
"I needed to ask you something."
Uh, oh, Jennifer thought. "What do you need to know?" she asked uneasily as Ronon stepped away and began to slowly pace again.
"Did you like me the first time you kissed me?" he stopped and watched her, looking for nonverbal answers.
Jennifer wasn't sure were this was going, but the butterflies in her stomach were fluttering as if they knew.
"I didn't dislike you," she winced and peeked at him, "but I didn't have any feelings for you."
"And so you ran away?" he sighed.
"I ran away…" she laughed, "because I kind of got caught up in the kiss, even forgot I was supposed to be counting. When I looked up at you after the kiss and realized that we had definitely kissed longer then the dare required…" Jennifer trailed off.
He had asked her a variation of this question before. They had been out on one of their many runs playing the question and answer game that they'd begun to pass the time and get to know each other better. The question then had been why she'd kissed him.
Looking back she realized as embarrassed as she'd been over trying to explain the why, it was still easier than this. He seemed this time to be focused on her emotions and feelings.
Jennifer looked at her feet. "I was afraid of what you thought of me."
Ronon looked at her sheepishly. "I didn't think of you much before, but after the kiss… I wondered why you kissed me. Then you came back and I was curious about you."
Ronon shuffled his feet, a little uncomfortable with this discussion. "Spent a lot of time wondering what another kiss with you would feel like."
Jennifer felt the hitch in her chest at his confession. "Me too," she said awkwardly.
Jennifer's response was met with a lot of silence. She was sure that with time Ronon would get to the point, but trying to tread water through this conversation was killing her.
She took a deep breath and slowly let it out hoping she could calm the nerves that felt like they were closing off her breathing.
And it all comes down to this, Jennifer thought, the moment the girls were hoping she'd seize and finally tell Ronon how she felt about him. "By the time we did get around to kissing each other again, I had fallen in love with you… and then you were gone."
Ronon watched her head quickly dip as she looked to the floor after her confession. He felt his heart tighten as he took a few steps closer to her. He stopped just short of touching her before he spoke. "Did my leaving… and then well… not actually leaving, change any of that?"
Jennifer fidgeted while looking at their feet. "If the butterflies in my stomach are any indication, I'm still falling and don't plan to hit bottom… ever," was her sarcastic reply.
Ronon reached out and lifted her chin, so he could see her. He arched his eyebrow at her and waited.
Jennifer grimaced, she'd been spending way to much time with Laura. "No, Ronon, it didn't change a thing. I'm still in love with you and would kiss you again in a heart beat." She saw the happiness hit his eyes first before he could even form words and she took advantage of it to tease him. "There wouldn't even have to be a good reason, it could be to say goodbye or hello, it could be right before eating or right before work, or because work is finally over or…"
Ronon placed his fingers across her lips to quiet her and was rewarded with feeling her smile form under his hand. "I am in love with you, little girl," he said as he took the last step forward and pulled her into his arms.
She tipped her head back so she could see his face, "I know…I could see it in you eyes."
Ronon released her for a moment while he moved to the end of his bed and sat down, pulling her down onto his lap. "I have the first reason," he said with a twinkle in his eye.
She quirked an eyebrow at him, "That I should kiss you?"
"How 'bout 'cause I want you to?" he asked still smiling.
"That one will always work," she replied as she leaned into him and met his lips. She reveled in the knowledge and freedom she now had to express her feelings for him anyway and anytime she wanted. No more sneaking glances at him, or trying to find legitimate reasons to spend time with him. Looking forward to minor injuries or lucky shots during sparring was no way for a doctor to be hoping.
Jennifer pulled back from their kiss and smiled into his eyes, she had never been this happy and it was stealing her breath. "How about because I'm happy to see you?" she asked.
"Sounds good," Ronon smiled and stole her breath all over again.
She took a deep breath and snuggled into him as he kissed her again. The kiss was slow and lazy and Jennifer wished they had the time it suggested.
Ronon must have been thinking something similar. He pulled back and traced a finger across her cheek before looking in her eyes. "How 'bout 'cause we're going to be late for a mission?"
"Another good reason, but I don't think Sheppard would appreciate that one," she said giving him a quick kiss before jumping up. She touched her com link, "Colonel Sheppard this is Dr. Keller."
"I was just about to call you," came back the grumpy voice.
"Can I have you and Lorne pick up my supplies from the infirmary?" she said sweetly.
"Already done, Doc. Can you tell Ronon I said to hurry up, we're waiting, that goes for you too, Doc." Sheppard said sternly.
"On our way, Colonel, would you like to talk to Ronon, I can put him on?" she asked.
"No, no, no," Sheppard quickly replied. "That is quite alright, Doc. There is no way in hell I'm going to interrupt the big guy when he's finally kissing his girl."
"How did you…" she started to ask, but Sheppard stopped her.
"Just get the two of you down here. Sheppard out."
"He says we're late," Jennifer laughed turning back to Ronon who was now standing next to her. "So I say we meet up here after the mission…" she said as she walked to his door. "And think up all of the other good reasons for kissing."
Ronon waved his hand in front of the sensors and the door slid open. "Sounds like a plan, little girl," he said grinning down at her. "How 'bout for good luck on the mission?"
"I love the way you think, Mr. Dex." She turned and slid her arms around his neck and he slid his around her waist to pull her close.
He gave her one last lingering kiss. He pulled away and took her hand as they hurried down the corridor. "You're going to make us late," he growled, but grinned down at her when she laughed at him.
They entered the gateroom hand in hand, capturing the attention of all their friends waiting for them at the gate.
"It's about time," Laura exclaimed with the goofiest looking grin he'd ever seen.
Ronon grinned when he looked around at all the faces smiling back at them. Jennifer had been right, Atlantis was in his blood and these people were his family. He gave Jennifer's hand a squeeze, "Remind me later to thank your friends for daring you to kiss me."
"Ah," Jennifer replied grinning back, "another good reason to kiss."