Title: Five mysteries that Rush will never solve
Author: Shenandoah Risu
Rating: PG-13
Content Flags: frustration
Spoilers: vague ones for Season 1 and 2
Characters: Nicholas Rush, the Destiny Crew
Word Count: 1,015
Summary: Some secrets, it seems, the universe just wants to keep to itself.
Author's Notes: Written for a prompt in set #139 at the LJ Comm sg1_five_things
Disclaimer: I don't own SGU. I wouldn't know what to do with it. Now, Young... Young I'd know what to do with. ;-)
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Five mysteries Rush will never solve

Nicholas Rush stares at his freshly dried pile of laundry in utter dismay. He opens the dryer door, crawls halfway into the machine, fumbles around with both hands in the dim light – all to no avail.

It seems that no matter where he goes in this universe, he always does battle with a sock-eating dryer. Back home, his wife Gloria insisted that he only buy one kind of socks, so that when their evil dryer needed to be fed, eventually it would eat another sock, and then two orphaned socks would get paired up without anyone being the wiser. On Icarus it became a running joke that every single one of his supply requisitions included socks. He got a brief respite while he hand-washed his socks on Destiny and hung them up to dry overnight. But as soon as he got his turn in Destiny's laundry facility, the curse struck again.

"We should have taken their socks," he mutters angrily at his laundromate Colonel Young.

"Who? What?"

"The Lucians. When we dropped them off on the planet. We should have taken their socks." And he stomps off.

Days later Greer plops a single sock on his dinner plate, just as he is about to get up and leave.

"Who'd you get that from," he frowns at Greer.

Greer shrugs. "Where everyone's new clothes come from around here. From someone who won't need them no more."

Rush picks up the sock. It feels weird to wear a sock that was pulled off a dead person, but back in his room he secretly gives thanks to people with more guts than him.

His own sock, meanwhile, is never seen again.


"Why is it, that no matter where we go planet-side, unless it's an utterly vile place that requires the use of those stinking suits, there are purple sweet potatoes?"

Camile tilts her head to the left. "I seem to remember Dr. Franklin writing in a bit of research he was conducting how some living organisms are just universal. A basic adaptation to a variety of living conditions."

"But seriously? Those farkin' tubers?"

"Becker says they're all slightly different. Colors, leaf shapes, veining, blossoms. But still close enough that they're recognizable as related species."

"They all taste like arse, too."

"Now, now, Nicholas. You don't find it comforting that so far we've been lucky to find food at all?"

"I bet those bloody seed ships literally seed those spawns of Satan on every planet. Set up a Stargate, hurl a box of the damned things through as a test."

Camile laughs. "Leave it be, Nicholas. Some things are not for you to know."


He can smell it, every time he walks into his quarters. A weird mix of – well, he doesn't even know, but that must be it: a mix of several things that won't allow him to analyze exactly what it is. Gloria once told him that while human beings would smell "soup", a dog would smell carrots, cabbage, broccoli, celery, parsnips, salt, pepper, soy sauce – all the different ingredients.

It must be similar here on the Destiny. He's asked others whether they could smell it, but all he ever gets is sniffing noses, creased eyebrows and a headshake.

He's moved his furniture dozens of times, always expecting to find a bead of something, an opened box left behind by the construction crew millions of years ago, a damaged pipeline – something. Anything. But he never does, and no one but him can smell it.

It drives him fairly bonkers.


He'd started whittling the chess set shortly after he returned from the alien vessel. Every day he's carved away at those wood pieces, making up the shapes as he goes along, then trying to copy them (in which he is spectacularly unsuccessful, by the way). He's sure to mark the bottoms so if in doubt he'll know if he is playing a rook or a knight.

Then things get busy, what with the invasion, and the whole Double Destiny thing, and the constant drone attacks, and the chess set sits there, untouched, for months.

And one day he decides to finish it. But as he picks up the first piece he realizes it's already done. Someone has secretly and quietly whittled at his chess set, masterfully imitating his own rather poor skills, and indeed all the pawns look alike now.

He asks around but all he gets is shrugs and shaking heads. He even digs through Destiny's log of simulations, but she's never made a wood-carving avatar.

The set is popular, and so he leaves it on the observation deck. No one ever admits to working on it.


Rush has had alcohol in his mother's milk – literally. Where he grew up even little children drank, and some were sad little alcoholics even at a tender age. Nicholas Rush has always partaken in moderation, gradually building up an impressive threshold.

All of that changes when Brody builds his first still. Rush has never been so drunk in his life, and the hangover is the worst he can remember. He watches Brody closely, but nothing he does is any different from what his upbringing has taught him – by all estimations he should be able to drink anyone under the table. True, the alcohol content is through the roof, but Rush can take it. Or so he thought.

What exactly it is that hits him so hard he can't quite understand. When he queries Dr. Inman, resident chemistry queen, she spreads her arms. "It's totally ordinary hooch, I assure you. Anyone can make it with just about anything. It just takes patience and know-how."

"You can't find some strange chemical in there?"

"Nope. It's as straightforward as your average home-brew vodka. Admittedly, it tastes awful, but it's exactly the same stuff."

He hates to admit it, but Brody's hooch isn't something he'll ever built up a tolerance for, so he just accepts the fact that his liver has found its master at last.

Some secrets, it seems, the universe just wants to keep to itself.


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