Pairing/Characters: McKay/Sheppard UST
Summary: John has a Christmas present for Rodney
"Terabytes, Colonel, that's what all this tinsel cost us!"
Rodney turned on his heel and started back across John's office, ignoring John's 'I'm actually trying to work here' face.
"Imagine, every bit and byte of data, all safe. Secure, in case we ever need to run. We could have made a copy; sent it back to Earth. Maybe there'd be something Sam could use against the Orii."
Rodney's hands spoke in tandem with his words, sketching out great arcs and short, sharp curves with stabbing punctuation.
"Caldwell actually had the gall to laugh in my face. He ordered me to file any complaints I had with you. So here I am. Filing. Why aren't you taking notes?"
John glanced down at his laptop, sighed, saved and turned it off.
"It's Christmas Eve, Rodney. There are other things to do. You have no idea how many miles of garland got hung today."
A single finger, held up like a threat, stopped Rodney's calculations halfway around the gate room but before he'd reached the 'gate.
"Don't even… Rodney, just take the evening off. Shower, change and meet me in the mess hall at seven."
"What? I… There are things… Important… Zelenka…"
The snap in his voice had Rodney bouncing to a halt, wide-eyed and disturbingly vulnerable, for a second or two at least.
"What? Busy man here, trying to get the job done. Not helped by military martinets playing power games! So, if you'll excuse me, I'll take this up with Elizabeth. She will at least do me the courtesy of listening before brushing me off."
"Did I mention that the Daedalus brought food as well as decorations? If you're late, you might miss out on tasting real, home-cooked gravy."
The flicker in Rodney's eyes told John he'd nearly won.
John tried, unobtrusively, to loosen his belt, convinced he wouldn't be able to eat again for at least a week. He'd nearly choked on a forkful of candied yams watching Rodney and Ronan try to steal from each other's closely guarded plates.
He was almost convinced that Rodney had forgiven or forgotten when John saw him lean across the table towards Elizabeth.
"Rodney, I think it's time we took a little walk. There's something that I think you need to see. I'll bring him back soon."
Elizabeth nodded and smiled and turned her attention back to Caldwell, and John hauled Rodney up and marched him off in mid-sputter.
"That was… I was going to… Dammit, slow down! Unless you want to watch me eat dinner in reverse?"
John stopped, opened the nearest door and muscled Rodney in, flicking on the lights before his captive said a word.
John swallowed hard at the lust in Rodney's eyes, telling himself it was surely for the hardware. Hard-drives, thumb drives, the latest techno geek wares, piled on every surface in the room and on the floor too.
Rodney licked his lips.
"Oh my god… John, I think I love you."