There are things one learns not to do in the Pegasus Galaxy. Perhaps the most important thing should not do is play pranks on any of the scientists. It could be argued that the Atlantis scientists were far and away the brightest minds Earth had to offer. Meaning, they could commit heinous murder if seriously provoked and disintegrate all evidence, including the body.

For the most part, they only used their powers for good. They were happy in their intellectual struggles. Even if Chief Scientist Doctor Rodney McKay was the most arrogant, condescending man in two galaxies. Even if the technology they dealt with was frustratingly over their heads at times. Even if they suffered from one life-or-death crisis every other week with the constant threat of being fed on by space vampires or being blown up by Genii and...or Replicators were happy.

That is, until some twisted soul decided to poison them.

Their minds were dulled over the next few days. Snappish and irritable, they turned on one another, biting and vicious. Even the military and civilians were not spared their wrath, and all soon learned to steer clear of the normally docile nerds, as they were affectionately called.

One day, Rodney ordered one of his 'minions' to run a diagnostic screening on loading and docking systems in the Puddle Jumper bay. The minion whose name was either Tony or Caleb sat at his station, nursing a thermos of coffee, snapped.

"Do it yourself."

McKay's fingers slowly came to a halt on his keyboard. He blinked.

"What?"

"Are you going deaf? Perhaps you should go visit the infirmary," he grumbled.

The others didn't even bother to hide their snicker or soften their laughter.

"All right, what is wrong with all of you? You've been behaving strangely for almost two weeks. Now I have tried to put up with your bad attitudes and –"

"Shut up, McKay. No one wants to hear your blabbering on, and honestly, saying we have bad attitudes is hypocritical coming from you of all people."

As McKay spluttered at Radek Zelenka's outburst, the rest of the minions muttered their agreement, a few clapping lightly.

"Have you all lost your minds?" McKay bellowed.

Sure, he knew he was a hard man to work for, demanding and impatient and brilliant as he was. But this behavior was bordering on insubordination and not something he could tolerate. He also couldn't dismiss all of them as as he had hundreds of other projects that took precedent over the thousands that his teams handled.

"Okay, okay. I realize I might be a little harsh on you guys from time to time, but this is mutiny. However, I am willing to look past if you would all just…"

"Man, this is my third cup of coffee, and I still feel dead," one of the minions whined.

The light bulb went off. Or on. Whatever.

"Let me see that," McKay ordered, already moving to take the mug.

The science tech practically hissed at him, but McKay looked at him with actual concern, settling him enough to allow it. McKay unscrewed the top and gently wafted his hand over the top, sniffing experimentally.

"You know this is decaf, right?" he quirked a brow.

"What?" came the collective yell.

The room became a den of shouts and protests. The scientists, after much cursing and swearing in several different languages, eventually concluded that some perverted reprobate had thought it funny to replace all of their beautiful, precious coffee, their very life's blood, with decaffeinated swill. Naturally, they would have figured it out themselves, only they'd had no reason to suspect such an evil act on innocent, hardworking people. They also had extreme caffeine withdrawal working against them as well.

The room suddenly quieted. Suspicious eyes turned to McKay, and the chief scientist found himself suddenly very afraid. And they could smell his fear too, he just knew it.

"Why aren't you affected, Rodney?" asked Radek, their unofficial spokesperson.

"Well, while the rest of you all drink from a communal supply, I have my own personal brand. I only drink the best. Unless I absolutely have to."

His answer seemed to appease them. While a few wondered who the idiot was who'd wasted time, money, and space on bringing decaf to another galax, the rest of the deprived scientists were devising a painful and non-forensic revenge for the responsible party.

First things first though…

McKay would later tell the story of how he was forced to turn over his stash of premium, Columbian coffee by dozens of rabid scientists in need of their fix. He'd swear that their eyes glowed red.

It was perhaps the stupidest thing one could do, to piss off a group of people who could make one's life miserable with a simple push of a button. By locking the transporter doors or having them convey them to the farthest point of the intended destination. By abusing Ancient technology that could turn a man invisible for long enough to spend a few days misplacing his things, seemingly making them float, and rearranging his room with him present until he ran screaming from the room. By changing the passwords on their personal computers. By shutting off the air conditioning and hot water in their quarters. Basically, making their life in the Pegasus Galaxy as miserable as two weeks on decaf coffee.

It so happened that Chuck, a 'keeper of the 'gate', was the foolish and guilty culprit. For the next month, he had fallen into disarray, hair askew, clothes rumpled, and a paranoid streak a light year wide. No one could say a word to him without accusing someone of working with them. After Director Weir witnessed Chuck all but interrogating a bemused Ronon Dex whose hand was steadily reaching for his much loved blaster, she'd ordered Chuck on medical leave and to go see Dr. Beckett.

By the time the scientists felt properly avenged, Chuck had become a regular of Dr. Kate Heightmeyer's who diagnosed him with having hallucinations of persecution, possibly suffering from a psychotic break or post-traumatic stress or even a latent case of schizophrenia. Once properly medicated, Chuck was allowed to return to work. Even with his nice, anti-psychotic drugs, he still found himself watching his back as a peculiar tingle came over him in the presence of the scientists.


I really like this fandom.