"Major Lorne and I are on our way."

With a quick sideways glance, she starts forward, and can hear Lorne running alongside her. It isn't far to their destination; they had already been on their way when John had called over the comm and told them to hurry. She isn't sure what's changed - Rodney had been talking a lot, but most of what he'd said either relied heavily on Earth technology or didn't directly pertain to the subject at hand - but she knows something has, and John's orders are good enough for her.

When they arrive, however, there's no sign of anything out of place, and she meets Lorne's eyes briefly as they look around. The room is one she hasn't seen before, a large console lying dormant in its centre; as best as she can tell, it's unused, and has been for some time, which doesn't explain the activity Rodney had said was coming from it. Lorne shrugs, and she nods, pressing the button on her headset.

"Colonel?" she asks, and waits for John's response.

"Teyla. What have you got?"

"Nothing of interest that I can see. It looks as if the room has not been -"


At Lorne's shout, she turns around, and freezes. She's certain neither of them closed the door, and it doesn't open as Lorne waves his hand over the controls.


"I am here," she says over the headset. She raises an eyebrow at Lorne, and he lifts his hands in a universal gesture. "We appear to have been locked in."

"You're trapped?" John asks, and she can hear Rodney muttering something in the background.

She watches as Lorne tries again, with no response. He looks at her apologetically.


She can hear John's sigh clearly over the comm. It's not meant for her, she knows, but she can feel his frustration.

"Okay. Hang tight, we'll try to get you out of there."

She can hear Ronon's voice an instant before the comm goes dead, and she glances at Lorne. He shoves half-heartedly at the door, then turns, his expression twisted in a grimace.

"What did Sheppard say?"

She smiles in a way she hopes is reassuring. "They are working on it."

He nods, but he already looks like he's settling in for a long wait. He approaches where she's standing at the console, and she glances down at it.

"I don't suppose you know what this thing does?" he asks, and she shakes her head.

"I do not believe it would be wise to experiment. Doctor McKay already believes its activity could be unstable."

He nods as if that's the answer he was expecting, and she reaches up to lay a hand on his shoulder. He smiles at the contact, and she looks away after a moment, dropping her hand.

"So I guess we wait," he says, and she nods her agreement. She has faith in her team; once Rodney figures out what sent them here in the first place, they will be freed.

He looks like he's going to say something else when her headset crackles, and she glances away.


"Colonel. What is your status?"

He clears his throat in a way that sounds like apology or embarrassment, and she frowns.

"We're ... kinda trapped here, too."

She can feel Lorne watching her, and she tries not to let her consternation show. "Your room is like ours?"

"McKay thinks so. According to him, the activity was coming from the consoles in both rooms, but we still don't know what caused it."

She nods. "I see."

She turns quickly as something sounds behind her, and watches as the console lights up briefly before falling still once more.

"Did yours just do that?" John asks.

"If you are referring to the flashing and beeping, then yes. Do you know what caused it?"

There's a pause on the other end. "That would be McKay."

Teyla hides a smile, even though he's not there to see it. Lorne is, however, still looking at her expectantly, and she turns her attention away from her headset.

"Colonel Sheppard, Doctor McKay, and Ronon are also trapped. Doctor McKay believes the consoles may be acting in tandem."

Lorne rolls his eyes like that's the last thing they need, and mutters, "Of course they are," in a voice too low to carry.

"You still there?"

"I am here," she tells John, and tries to keep the amusement out of her voice. "Is there anything we can do from here?"

"I think McKay's exact words were 'stand still and don't touch anything.'"

"Understood," she says.

"I'll let you know when we've made some progress."

The comm falls silent again, and she glances at Lorne.

"Let me guess," he says. "They're still working on it."

She smiles. "I believe the best thing we can do now is wait."

There's silence for a a while, and Lorne looks like he's resisting the urge to touch something.

"I wish I'd brought a pack of cards," he says, and she understands. John isn't good at staying still and doing nothing, either, especially when there's a crisis.

"We could spar," she suggests, reaching for something she hopes will help keep his mind off their current situation.

"And get my ass kicked by a girl?" he asks, and looks for a moment as if he's considering. "It's not like I have anything better to do."

She removes her headset laying it on the ground beside the console, and moves to the largest patch of open floor. She waits for Lorne to move first, easily deflecting his first blow as she circles around him.

She aims for his midsection, and he blocks; she turns away as he reaches to grab her arm. She ducks a second blow of his, smiling as he shuffles back, and feints to the left; her next blow, open-handed, catches him in the solar plexus, and he draws a ragged breath.

"I knew this was a bad idea," he says, but he's smiling. Her next few blows are deflected, and she waits for him to drop his guard again before she hits him squarely in the stomach, twisting his arm to bring him up against her.

After a beat, he pulls away sharply, and she can see his grimace as he rotates his shoulder. His next blow catches her off guard, and she stumbles back; he moves forward, and she ducks, sweeping her right leg out to knock his feet from underneath him.

He moves as if to get up, and she steps forward, kneeling to pin him between her thighs. He struggles for a moment before falling still, and she raises an eyebrow.

"Okay," he says, his voice laced with humour. "You win. But I've got to tell you, there are worse ways to lose."

He smiles, in a way she has become accustomed to; John often smiles in the same way when she catches him in this position. She understands the reference, but she is not affected by it the way they seem to be; before Atlantis, none of her sparring partners were ever so unable - or unwilling - to see the distinction between the two types of physical activity.

She's still straddling him when a voice comes over the headset behind her, and she gets up quickly as she moves to answer it.

"Colonel Sheppard?"

"Listen, does your console have three big buttons in the middle?"

She glances over at it. "Yes."

"Great. Try pressing the one on the right."

She does; nothing happens.

"Anything?" John asks.


"Okay. Try pressing the one on the left, then the one in the middle."

As she finishes the sequence, the console lights up, but she can see nothing else that is affected. "Did that help?"

She can hear a whispered conversation over the headset.

"McKay seems to think so. He's still working on getting us out of here. You guys okay in there?"

She glances at Lorne, who is now standing, rubbing his shoulder. "We are fine."

"All right. I'll let you know when we have an update."

Lorne looks at her as she removes the headset again, and she smiles.

"Anything?" he asks.

She shakes her head. "Nothing yet. But I'm sure it will not be much longer."

He nods, and takes a step closer. He's still rubbing his shoulder, and she looks at him questioningly.

"Are you all right?"

He waves off her concern, but his expression is untroubled. "I'm fine. A little humbled, but fine. I just wish we had something to eat in here."

She smiles; she's beginning to feel hungry herself. "Perhaps we will eat soon."

"Yeah," he says, his voice sounding less certain than hers. "Maybe."

She reaches for him again, placing a hand on his, and his fingers enclose hers automatically. She pauses, but doesn't pull away; the contact is welcome, and seems to provide them both a semblance of comfort.

After a moment, he moves closer, leaning against the console beside her. "Do you ever miss your people?" he asks, and there is a genuine question in his voice.

"Sometimes," she says, her voice soft. "Some times more than others. But I am happy in Atlantis." She glances at him. "Do you miss Earth?"

"Yeah," he says, smiling ruefully. "It's an adjustment. I miss the little things. Sports. Television."

She nods. "I still have not seen Earth."

He smiles more brightly at that, and grasps her hand; she had almost forgotten he was holding it. "Maybe I'll take you sometime. Show you around my home town."

Her answering smile is genuine. "I would like that."

She almost doesn't notice him shift at first, but she looks down as his free hand brushes her thigh. Their legs are almost touching, now, and she moves forward almost instinctively.

His hand comes up to circle her waist, firm but soft on her skin. The fingers of his other hand move, entwined with hers, and she feels his breath on her lips a moment before he glances away, looking behind them. She follows his gaze, and her eyes widen as the door slides open.

"Teyla?" She can barely hear John's voice over the headset, and Lorne releases her hand as she reaches for it.

"Yes, Colonel."

"Did that work?"

She smiles, and glances up at Lorne. "The door is open."

"Good," he says. "Let's get the hell out of here."

She nods once at Lorne, and he stands back to let her leave first. She catches the near touch of his hand on her lower back as they walk, which falls away when they round the corner to face John, Rodney, and Ronon.

"Well, that was fun," John says, and she smiles in response. Behind him, Rodney looks harried, and Ronon watches him discreetly.

"Did you find the source of the anomaly?" she asks Rodney, who pauses for a minute before his eyes light up the way they do when he talks about science.

"Oh. Yes. See, we thought the consoles might have been acting independently, or that the activity may have been caused by a malfunction. But it was too ordered for that, and when I looked deeper, I found traces of what I believe to be a computer virus."

Rodney's smiling, and Teyla can see John stop to regard him sceptically. "That's really not a good thing. Remember the Wraith virus when we were on board the Daedalus?"

Rodney shakes his head. "This isn't Wraith. As far as I can tell, it appears to be Ancient."

Teyla frowns. "Why would the Ancients create a virus within Atlantis?"

"Well, that's just it," Rodney says. "I don't think the virus is actually harmful. It may even be beneficial to the city's systems. I just haven't quite figured out how, yet."

"All right," John says slowly. "So, how do you do that?"

"Well, I'll have to work on it. I could probably use Zelenka." He glances up at John, and shrugs. "I'll let you know."

"Fine," John says, and Rodney hurries off. Teyla glances at Lorne, who's smiling, and she smiles in return. She looks back at John in time to see him shrug. "I guess that means we're dismissed. We'll pick this up again once McKay finds something."

Teyla nods, and turns, conscious of Lorne's footsteps behind her as she walks away. They had spent longer than she thought on the far side of the city, as her stomach is all too ready to attest, and she makes her way quickly to the mess hall.

Once there, she takes the nearest meal she can find, sitting down at an empty table. She looks up as Lorne slides into the seat next to her, and she takes a sip of her water.

"Hey," he says, and she smiles.

"Major Lorne." She isn't sure if he's come for conversation, or just to eat, and she waits for him to speak first.

"About what happened," he says, and she can feel her face flush slightly.

"I did not -" she begins, but he interrupts her.

"What are you doing tonight?" he asks, and she pauses. This was not exactly what she had expected, but it's not unwelcome.

"I have no plans."

"Come have dinner with me, then. Somewhere other than the cafeteria."

She opens her mouth to reply, and his knee brushes against hers; above the table, his fingers gently trace the back of her hand.

"I would love to," she says finally. He smiles, and his fingers entwine themselves with hers, and neither of them mentions how difficult it is to eat with only one hand.