Disclaimer: The following story is a work of fan fiction, and as such is for fan enjoyment only. All recognizable characters/settings are the property of their respective owners. No copyright infringement is intended, and no profit is made. Nope, not mine sadly. I still live under the delusion that maybe one day they might belong to me, but Rodney and John keep giving me funny looks whenever I talk about it.
Summary: John plus downtime plus boredom... What could possibly go wrong?
Central Character(s): John, Rodney and Carson – but Ford, Teyla and Elizabeth get a mention.
Category (ies): H/C, friendship
Placement: Season One, sometime in the first half or so.
Rating: +12 due to blood and the odd (mild) swear word here or there.
Spoilers: Spoiler free, baby!
A/N: Another short, another excuse to beat the crap out of one of my boys. *epic fail at an innocent face* This one was inspired by one of my best friends – who actually did this and came off a hell of a lot worse than John. Toby, you nut, this one is all for you.
As for the reason why I wrote this... well... I got bored and needed a breather in between fixing all the gaping plot holes in the epic, multi chaptered John!whump fic I'm working on. I've managed to get 2 very rough chapters down but the plot is a tad shaky. Watch this space though!
Also, I wanted to wet your appetites a little bit. I know how much you guys love H/C...
Yes. Yes I AM evil. I know and accept this.
Major John Sheppard groaned as he stared up at the intricately decorated ceiling in the Gate Room of Atlantis. He'd never really paid much attention to it before now, but it was actually very pretty. Next to him, sunlight streamed in from the glass windows, the beams bouncing off the Gate to form patterns of coloured light in the air.
It was a very beautiful yet surreal sight.
The pilot let out another low groan as the stabbing pains in his leg tried to remind him why he was staring at the ceiling in the first place.
"Don't move," snapped a panicked but familiar voice from his left side. "Carson's on his way."
John managed to turn his head in the direction of the sound, blinking until the form next to him finally came into focus. "McKay?" he croaked.
"What part of 'don't move' did you not understand, Major?" Rodney growled, but there was no real heat in his words. Instead, the Canadian looked pale and worried, and for a moment, the Air Force man felt bad for obviously scaring his team-mate. "I mean seriously, what in the world possessed you to try something so incredibly stupid? That was pretty idiotic even for you, Sheppard. By the way, did you know you're bleeding?"
Sheppard screwed up his nose as he tried to remember exactly what he'd been doing and why he was hurting so badly. He tilted his head back to the right and saw what looked like bits of his beloved skateboard scattered around the floor. "What the hell...?" he moaned.
He could almost feel the eye roll from Rodney.
"You decided to try and grind along the banisters up there," McKay replied, motioning to the Operations Centre. "Apparently, you were doing remarkably well until you overcompensated and came crashing down the stairs head first." Rodney gave his team-mate a concerned look. "As for why you decided that was a suitable way to spend your downtime... Let's just say I haven't figured that one out just yet."
John snorted a laugh that quickly turned into a stifled yelp as his ribs grated ominously. Definitely broken then... He was about to come back with a snappy reply when he felt his head being lifted up and then lowered back down onto something a lot softer than the Gate Room floor. It took him a couple of moments to realise that his impromptu pillow was in fact the physicist's jacket.
"Don't you dare bleed all over that," McKay ordered darkly. "Tan is an absolute bitch to get clean." Despite the tone of his voice, Rodney's hands were tender as they applied a bandage (albeit shakily) to the gash on John's head. "I'm serious, you know," he continued as he carried on his gentle ministrations. "You military have it easy when it comes to laundry. Black and charcoal don't stain that badly."
"Never knew... you were so obsessed with... dry cleaning," Sheppard wheezed, trying to keep his breathing as shallow as possible.
"Shut up," his team-mate growled lightly. "Judging from the way you're breathing, I think you've damaged at least a couple of ribs and although I'm not an MD, I know that talking with broken ribs isn't a brilliant idea." He caught sight of the blood on his hands and swallowed heavily, wishing that Carson would get his Highland voodoo witch-doctoring ass in here right now. He gingerly felt along the back of the pilot's head, making John hiss slightly as his nimble fingers came into contact with a sizable knot at the base of Sheppard's skull. "Sorry! Sorry!" he squeaked, withdrawing the hand so quickly anyone watching would have thought it had been burnt.
Sheppard blinked lethargically and managed a small but pained smile. "'S okay, buddy," he said, his words slurring slightly. "Don' worry... 'bout it."
Rodney chewed his lip as he tried to work out what to do next. Although he knew that it wouldn't be long before Carson arrived, he still felt that he should be doing something to make his friend more comfortable. The slurred speech was new and unwelcome, and although the rational part of his mind knew it was from the concussion that the Major was likely to have, it still troubled him deeply. "Ugh," he muttered absently, trying to wipe his hands clean on his trousers and leaving vivid red streaks against the pale fabric.
If John noticed the reaction, he didn't call McKay on it. "Where's... Elizabeth?" he asked, managing another weak grin when he was treated to the McKay Evil Eye.
Although the pilot's confusion scared him, Rodney managed to force it down as he replied in his best pissy tone of voice, "She's off-world, remember?" Seeing a blank look from his friend, McKay took a deep breath and elaborated. "Helping to broker that trade agreement with Teyla and Ford on M2G-492? And seriously, if you don't stop talking I'll tell her everything in excruciating detail."
"You... you wouldn't... Rodney. That's just... low, buddy..."
"I mean it, Major. Stop talking!"
John knew when to take the hint and judging from how his friend's already pale face went even whiter, he figured it would be a good idea to shut up and listen to the man. He was spared from a further diatribe by the arrival of Carson and a med team.
"Okay, Rodney, we've got him," Beckett cooed gently, motioning for the Canadian to move to the side.
About damn time! Rodney grumbled internally even as he let out a small sigh of relief at the sight of the Scotsman. "He's got at least two broken ribs, his left leg is a total mess and I suspect he has a pretty significant concussion judging by the goose egg that's forming on the back of his surprisingly thick skull," he said as he reluctantly shifted to let the medics through.
"That's good to know, lad, thank you," Carson said, giving Rodney a quick pat on the shoulder. "We'll be careful with him, I promise." He turned to Sheppard. "Hello, son."
"Hi... doc," John wheezed, sketching a weak wave.
There was a dangerous sounding growl from McKay's direction. "What did I say about not talking?!"
"Beckett overrules... you now... so it means... I can... talk if I... want to," came the defiant reply.
"Actually, it doesn't, Major," Carson said with a pointed look. "I'll not have you causing further damage to yourself, especially if those ribs are broken."
The Air Force man fought the urge to roll his eyes at the smug look on Rodney's face. It was at that point that one of the medics accidentally jarred his broken leg as they were trying to get it in the splint. John fought hard against the scream bubbling in his chest, knowing that it would make his already painful ribs worse. His fingers moved to claw at the tiles on the floor but instead, he found his hand gripped strongly by Rodney.
And wow, he never knew the physicist could move that fast.
"Breath through it, Sheppard," the Canadian said, his voice determined. He wasn't brilliant at this, but he gave it his best shot for John. His free hand caught the young officer's head as he tried to take a look at the damage to his leg. "Uh uh, pal, don't go there. Nothing to see down there, okay?"
Sheppard managed a small nod as he brought his gaze back up to his team-mate. Pain filled hazel eyes met concerned blue ones and for a moment, the world narrowed down to just the two of them. The warmth from Rodney's hands was oddly soothing and John found himself calming down.
You back with me, Sheppard?
The spell was quickly broken when Carson started speaking again.
"John, we're just going to get you onto the gurney," the Scotsman explained as he motioned for his team to get into position. "I'll not lie to you – it'll be mighty uncomfortable for a few moments. We'll be as quick as we can, though, I promise." He looked across to Rodney and gave him a small smile. "Keep him calm and focused on you, lad," he said. "It'll make it easier for us and less painful for him."
McKay nodded. "You heard him, Major," he said, refocusing his gaze on Sheppard. "You just keep looking at me, okay?" Seeing the small nod from his friend, he tightened his grip slightly on the hand he still held. Knowing that a distraction would work best, he thought for a moment then asked, "Did I ever tell you about the time I went bungee jumping?"
Sheppard blinked in disbelief, his eyebrows rising almost comically.
"It's true," Rodney continued, keeping half an eye on the med team. "I was in the middle of one of my PhDs at the time and... well, I was really, really drunk at the time. I thought it would be a great way to impress this girl from the Biology course that I had a massive crush on..."
"On three... one, two, three, lift!"
Sheppard's world faded to a murky grey for a few moments as he was lifted onto the gurney. He struggled to keep his breathing even, fighting to push back the blackness threatening to creep up on him. Rodney's grip and oddly calm voice were the only things keeping him anchored.
"So anyway," the physicist continued, his grip tightening fractionally in an effort to pull Sheppard back from the brink, "I decided what the hell and did it. Got into the harness, took a deep breath and then jumped right off the side of a dam without even thinking about what I was doing."
Sheppard looked back across to his friend, frowning slightly.
Rodney wasn't a genius for nothing, and could tell by the expression on the pilot's face that John was completely gripped by this rare glimpse into his life before Atlantis. "Let me tell you, pal, it's not an experience I ever intend to repeat. I'll admit that it was one hell of an adrenaline rush but it was outrageously terrifying and I'm never doing anything like that ever again."
He looked down at Sheppard – the Air Force man's face was wracked with pain but his eyes were bright and alert, eager to hear how the story ended. Rodney gave him a lop sided smirk.
"Needless to say, it didn't go well," he continued. He blushed slightly and looked to the floor before leaning in close to John. "I threw up during the jump," he confessed in a low voice as the team wheeled them out of the Gate Room towards the Infirmary. "When they pulled me back up, I was literally covered from head to toe in vomit. My crush took one look and ran for the hills."
John couldn't stop the small chuckle that left him, but regretted it instantly as it turned into a cough. Two pieces of rib brushed past each other and the resulting pain sent him into oblivion.
A few days later, John was trying to get comfortable in his cot. His left leg had broken in two places and required surgery and pins to fix. It was now suspended in traction and part of the reason why the pilot was gingerly wriggling about like a wounded snake in a barrel. Rodney had been spot on with his diagnosis – along with the broken leg, he'd bust three ribs and almost punctured a lung. His concussion hadn't been too bad although his head still felt like it has been used as a punch bag.
He just wished he could free himself of the stupid traction machine. It was driving him nuts.
"Ah, sleeping beauty finally awakes, I see."
Sheppard tilted his head to see McKay strolling into the Infirmary, his arms behind his back. "Hey, McKay," he called weakly. "You come to rescue me from Beckett's evil clutches?"
Rodney rolled his eyes. "Are you serious, Sheppard? You've got pins in your damn leg for crying out loud!"
"And your point is?"
"My point, Major, is that you're lying there doing an excellent impression of the Bionic Man, doped up to the gills with whatever heathen voodoo concoction Carson has you on and all you want to do go on the lam?!"
"This damn thing is hell, Rodney!" John groused, pointing at the sling. "I swear that if I don't get out of here pronto, I'm gonna snap," he growled. "And when that happens, it will not be a pretty sight I can assure you."
"You, my friend, are officially insane. And you know that Carson will kill me if I stage a prison break," replied McKay. "I've still got the scars from the last time, pal, and I'm in no mood for a repeat performance."
"So why are you here then?"
The Canadian gave John a mock glare but the effect was ruined when he grinned. In all honesty, it was a relief to see the man awake and coherent. "I just thought I'd stop by and see how you were doing," he said, discreetly placing something on the floor next to his friend's bed.
"How I'm doing is I want my leg out of this hellish thing so I can get some damn sleep!"
The pilot did have a point, the physicist thought as he regarded his friend. John looked desperately uncomfortable and he knew that the angle he'd managed to get himself in wouldn't be helping his ribs too much. McKay studied his team-mate then turned his attention to the traction machine. "Hold that thought," he said, pointing a finger at John before jogging off in the direction of Carson's office.
Sheppard strained to hear what the two men were saying, but from the little he could make out, Rodney was giving Carson hell about something. After several more minutes, there was a strangled growl, followed by a loud "Fine!". Ten seconds later, Carson stomped out looking like he could rip a Wraith in two with his bare hands and came to a stop at the foot of John's bed.
"Rodney tells me you can't get comfortable, John," Beckett said. "Is that true?"
John nodded, feeling a bit sheepish. "Yeah, doc. It's this thing," he motioned to the sling supporting his leg. "I can't turn over, I can't sit up properly..." He treated Carson to one of his best puppy dog looks before continuing in a small voice, "It's really uncomfortable and I can't sleep."
Beckett let out a soft sigh and in a matter of seconds, had freed John from the hellish contraption. He gently lowered the pilot's casted leg onto a pillow. "Better?" he asked.
"Much," John replied, grinning like a ten year old boy. "Thanks, Carson."
"Aye, lad, you're welcome. One condition – you tell me if the pain gets any worse, alright?"
"And no more stupid stunts. You took years off my life with that little show, Major, let me tell you."
"I know. I'm sorry, Carson, honestly," Sheppard said in a low voice. "I'll be a good little soldier from now on and stick to getting shot by hostile enemy forces instead, okay?"
"I'd rather you avoided them as well, son," Beckett replied, "but knowing you that isn't likely. Just keep out of trouble for a couple of weeks, alright?"
"You've got a deal, doc."
Satisfied, the Scotsman nodded and wandered back to his office, trying to ignore the smug grin on Rodney's face.
"Better?" the physicist asked.
John let out a contented sigh as he carefully twisted onto his good side and snuggled down into his bedding. "Buddy, you have no idea how much," he replied.
McKay smiled softly and reached down to retrieve the package he'd brought in with him. "I, um, I thought you might like this," he said, holding it out in front of his friend.
John frowned but reached across to tug the wrapped parcel out of Rodney's hands. He stripped the wrapping enthusiastically to reveal the present – his skateboard. "But... How?" he asked, his eyes almost comically wide.
"Uh, hello, genius here?" Rodney said, pointing at himself. "Besides, Major, it's a skateboard. It's not like I built you a damn Jumper or anything. It was child's play."
"McKay," Sheppard began, shaking his head softly. Unable to find the words he wanted, he reached out and gripped his friend's hand. "Thanks," he said after a few moments.
The physicist returned the grip and smiled affectionately. "Anytime, John." He hooked his foot around a nearby chair and tugged it over to sit down. "One condition."
"What is it with doctors and conditions?"
"I'm serious, Sheppard! If you ever try and do something as moronic and reckless as that again, I'll kick your ass. Are we clear?"
John saw the concern in his geek's face and nodded. "I won't, I promise," he said sincerely. "You're not really gonna tell Elizabeth are you?"
Rodney shook his head. "Nope." He waited until he saw John let out a sigh of relief before adding, "Teyla and Ford on the other hand? They're getting all the gory details."
"Hey, you should have thought about that before you decided to recreate a scene from Jackass, pal!"
"But they'll never let me hear the end of it!" John wailed.
"No they won't. Especially when they see the surveillance footage..."
McKay grinned evilly. His relief at Sheppard being able to make a full recovery was immense but that wasn't going to stop him from getting one up on the cocky Air Force man. Now all he had to do was wait until his team mates got back from off-world.
A memory surfaced in John's head and he frowned. "Hey, did you really go bungee jumping?"
Rodney just smiled.
ZOMG - John!whump!
*falls off her chair in shock*
Hope you all enjoyed that. :D I love it when my favourite Air Force man does stupid things. *evil laughter* And did Rodney go bungee jumping? I'll leave that to you to decide. :p