Epilogue

"Und ich trage mein Herz offen
Alle Türen ganz weit auf
Hab keine Angst mich zu verbrennen
Auch wenn´s weh tut
Nur was weh tut, is' auch gut."

Rosenstolz, "Gib mir Sonne"

So… back in good old Atlantis. It's been three days since they walked through the 'Gate and already he wonders why he actually anticipated being back. He really should have remembered that Sheppard had had six goddamn weeks to not do his paperwork. When he'd opened his office for the first time after coming back to the city, it had looked like a tree had died in it. Seriously, they have state of the art computers and their superiors back on Earth still insist on doing actual paperwork?

A little disgruntled he shakes his head and frowns out into the night. Okay, so… Sheppard's face when he'd told him he'd just signed off 'the Lieutenants' evil plan' instead of requisitions after making him do his part of the paperwork that had accumulated in both their offices had been priceless and it still hasn't ceased to make him grin evilly whenever he thinks about it.

However, with Lieutenants like Simmons, Kemp, Wells and a dozen other young heroes in the city, he'd be frightened at the thought of them devising an evil plan as well. In fact… he's pretty convinced they actually have one and that… "So… how's Williamson?"

Dammit. He hates it when Moore does his sneaking up at people act. It never fails to make him jump at least inwardly. So he glares at him… until he produces two bottles of beer. Also… he didn't start the conversation with some allusion to snakes. Oh, okay, maybe no growling today. Instead he makes a face and then shrugs. "Being a pompous ass, like always."

That makes Moore grin as he leans against the mess hall's railing next to him. "Let me guess… you didn't tell him about Maureen and I and there was a reason for that?"

He takes a moment to answer and takes a swig from his bottle which Moore kindly took upon himself to open before handing it to him. "Uh… actually… I did. He wasn't… that amused about it. But I guess he'll come around." Moore frowns and for some reason he hastens to add, "Or at least Anna assured me he would."

Moore takes a swig himself and then gives him a half-grin. "Don't underestimate the hold your sister has over good old Charlie."

It prompts him to roll his eyes. "Would I ever, huh." And with that he could let it lie, let Moore sort it out on his own… but he just has the feeling that despite the laid-back outward appearance, Moore, just like himself, does care about whether Charlie approves of his decisions or not. So he sighs and adds, "Okay, seriously… he'll be fine with it. Even without Anna having to convince him."

Moore just nods and for a few minutes, they just stand there, looking out into the Atlantis night and he finds his thoughts wandering to Laura who's off-world, providing security detail to a group of very easily excited anthropologists who'd been allowed to study the rites of passage of some indigenous culture or other. So far they haven't heard anything even remotely alarming – well, maybe apart from the fact that apparently anthropologists can hold their liquor at least as good as the average Marine which led to Drs. Sarrazano and Feldman being made official members of the tribe, that is – so he tells himself that he's only still awake because his inner clock is still totally screwed up by intergalactic jetlag again.

And anyway, thinking of Laura brings him to something she told him just yesterday with a big grin on her face. He turns to Moore again, now also wearing a slight grin. "So… I hear a certain someone asked you a certain something."

Knowing full well what he's talking about and apparently bursting with wanting to share his news, Moore simply answers, "Yep."

The fact that Moore doesn't even deny that it had been Reece who'd proposed and not he does surprise him a little but he decides not to dwell on that and simply continues, "And I hear that you said yes."

Moore's eyes even light up for a moment when he replies, "You totally can say that."

Dammit, there has to be some way he can irritate Moo… oh, right. "You're going to be a Marine wife."

"Husband," Moore just says without missing a beat and it irks him that he still looks like they're talking about shooting range results, not a proposal of marriage.

He'd like to come up with something ingenious… but all that comes to him is, "Right."

However, for some reason, that seems to be the thing that finally got to Moore because he gives him a little glare and point his finger at him. "Don't look so smug. You are going to be one, too."

Wha… He frowns at Moore. "Do I even want to know how you obtained that information?" Because denying… isn't an option anyway, considering the fact that Moore's face is the epitome of smugness right now.

Moore, however, tries to school his features back to innocent and replies, "No, probably not." Also… he doesn't need to anyway. He shouldn't tell Laura about it, though, because she'd just be full of herself about the fact that she'd been right in telling him keeping a secret in Atlantis for longer than an hour is practically impossible.

Oh well. "Right, thought so." There's something about this that's much more interesting, anyway. "Also… that's a bad thing how?"

Ah, yeah, good one, he thinks. Moore just smirks and answers, "Mh… apart from the fact that your future wife can blast your ass into the sky and mine can insult me in more languages than I have years of service under my belt? Nothing much, actually." Right… seen like that… wanting to marry Laura sounds a bit like a very… adventurous idea. But then Moore adds, "I mean… their motto is 'Semper Fidelis', after all," and that kind of… is all he needs to say really.

"Of course. That makes them the best wives you can get," he deadpans and it makes them both grin after a moment of being able to keep their faces absolutely straight. There's one thing, though… that keeps bugging him and so he says in a voice much more sober, "Okay, seriously: You realize that it's never going to be easy, right?"

Moore doesn't answer right away but stalls a little with taking a swig from his bottle. When he answers him… he doesn't look at him. "Yeah, I do. But you know, if there's one thing Marines are good at it's holding on to something." True. Very, very true. Then Moore smirks and adds, "In sickness and in health…"

It makes him return the grin and continue with, "For better or worse…" and together they finish, "Till death do us part."

It makes him grin and hold out his bottle to Moore to prompt, "To wives who are Marines."

Moore touches his bottle with his own and counters, "And their Air Force husbands." Grinning, they both take a nice long draw and he decides that even despite the insane amount of paper he still has to work through – and make Sheppard work through along with him – being back in Atlantis really is what it's cracked up to be.

~*~

"Und I'm wearing my heart open
Every door open wide
Am not afraid to get burned
Even when it hurts
Only what hurts is good."

Rosenstolz "Give me Sun"


A/N: So... yep, epilogue and back in Atlantis. Also, the Lieutenants' evil plan was mac's idea and yeah, I would probably write a story about it... but the Lieutenants are very secretive of it, even to the point to deny that there actually is one. Also... the sequel's already written and beta'ed so for everyone who wonders how Laura and Evan are going to cope with the fallout... be on the look out :)