Title: Monsters, Inc
Author: Keira Marcos
Word Count: 2,200
Summary: Five planets. Five monsters. Five very interesting days.
Status: Completed (and not series related)
Disclaimer: I don’t own them. I don’t pretend to. I won’t make money off of them. I rarely spend my time doing things that actually make money—much to my husband’s utter dismay.
Author’s Note: Forgive me for committing “5 Things” fic. I don’t know what came over me. I’m probably not contagious.
– – – – –
“Would you hurry the fuck up, McKay?” John shouted as he grabbed a fistful of Rodney’s TAC vest and dragged him up to his feet.
“We’re not going to make it.”
“Oh, we’re going to make it,” John snapped. “I’ll be goddamned if my file is going to read that I gotten eaten by a fucking…” He glanced over his shoulder as they caught sight of Teyla at the DHD. “Bat man!”
Rodney sputtered. “Oh Christ, it is Batman isn’t it?” He stumbled a little on the uneven terrain as they ran past the DHD and hit the event horizon at a dead run.
He was laughing by the time they skidding to a halt in the gateroom. John stared at him for a few seconds and started to laugh to. Teyla and Ronon lingered with them, smiling and obviously unconcerned. Rodney leaned into John and they laughed a little harder. It was just another day in the most fucked up galaxy, ever. John wrapped an arm around Rodney’s shoulders and wiped tears from his eyes as he guided him towards the stairs.
“Colonel Sheppard.” Richard Woolsey paused and frowned at them. “Do you need… I mean… your situation seemed quite dire when Teyla dialed in.”
Rodney waved him off. “Another day, another monster.”
John sputtered and started to laugh again.
“Monster,” Richard repeated.
“Oh yeah.” Rodney waved his hands, his eyes a bright with amusement and the good cheer of not being eaten. “Easily seven feet tall, three hundred pounds, wings, and an uncanny resemblance to George Clooney.”
“Clooney?” John frowned as he prodded Rodney towards the infirmary. “Seriously?”
“Well, I can’t very well say he looked like a Batman that I actually liked,” Rodney responded. “Clooney was the biggest mistake ever.”
“Okay, okay.” John unclipped his P-90. “Who’s your favorite? I caution you, McKay, this could be a deal breaker sort of question.”
“Please, Michael Keaton and then Christian Bale.”
John was the last through the gate and landed unceremoniously on top of McKay, Teyla, and Ronon who were on their bellies, covered in jungle vegetation, all three of them muttering incoherently to themselves. He rolled off of them with a sigh and unclipped his P-90. “Mr. Woolsey, please lock out PX7-E34. We are never going there again. Ever.”
Rodney rolled onto his back and let his tablet PC fall to the floor. “For the record, I think we should avoid tropical, perfect, beautiful planets for the foreseeable future.”
“Yes.” Teyla groaned as she crawled away from them and sat back on her heels. Her hair was a mess of tangles and vines. “I’ve never… seriously. Was that one of those things from Jurassic Park?”
“Velicoraptor?” Rodney guessed as he stood and started to pick leaves off himself. “Agreed, that was a fucking velicoraptor; only they weren’t that big in the movie.”
McKay shoved John forward across the event horizon and then fell through himself. He landed on his knees and crawled away. “Put up the fucking shield, Chuck!” He slumped down and smiled just as the hundreds of little thumps that hit the shield until the wormhole disengaged.
Ronon shook out his dreads and growled. “I hate you people. I mean, really. I hate you. You just had to say it, Sheppard!”
John groaned and then laughed a little. “Well, hell, who wasn’t thinking it?”
Teyla unclipped her P-90, passed it to a Marine and then started stripping out of her slime covered clothes. “I had plans, John. I was going to have a very nice dinner with my mate and my son had a baby sitter. I was going to have a GROWN UP evening, John. Now… now I will spend the night in the decontamination chamber with the three of you. You will pay for this.”
“This is not my fault!” John protested slipping as he tried to stand. He glared at the Marine who was laughing a few feet away from him. “Corporal Hastings, you’re going to run with Ronon for the next month.” The soldier groaned. “Morning and evening.” He ignored the betrayed look on Ronon’s face and turned to look at Rodney. “McKay?”
“John, in the time that I’ve known you—you’ve gotten me shot at more times than I can count by primitive projectiles of various sizes and shapes, arrows, spears, rocks, and then there were the laser pistols on PX4-Y32 which in retrospect were very cool. Hell, you’ve shot me. I forgave you all of it.” Rodney stood up and started to wipe slime off his computer with steady, careful fingers. “You’re my best friend but if you ever get me slimed by flying alien mucus blobs again I’m not going to be your friend anymore.”
John stared for a second and then he started to laugh. He lay back on the floor of the gateroom and laughed so hard he cried. He grew quiet and then sighed. “You have to admit—nothing that looks that innocent in this galaxy really is. They would have attacked even if I hadn’t said that they were probably going to kill us.”
He screamed only a little when all three of them landed on him.
Ronon beat them to the gate and had it dialed out before John even caught sight of the DHD. It was pitch black on the worst planet in the Pegasus galaxy (bar none – he was updating the top ten list when they got back to Atlantis) but the glow of the active wormhole was like a siren’s call. McKay’s labored breathing beside him wasn’t excellent news but at the least they weren’t dead or worse. He tightened his grip on Rodney and groaned softly when the gate went dark.
Rationally, he knew that it would open again in a minute and a rescue team would be coming through. He started putting one foot in front of the other, all but dragging McKay along with him.
“Almost home, Rodney.”
John laughed softly. “Hate you back, buddy.”
“At least we answered that question.”
“Yep,” John said grimly. “We sure did.”
“Couldn’t figure out why women couldn’t actively participate in the festival. Just didn’t make sense,” Rodney muttered. “Now, fuck a duck, John—those bitches need Jesus.”
“Yes, they do. We should go back to Earth, pack up Billy Graham and bring his ass out here to deal with them.” He sighed as he heard the Stargate activate again and ten Marines came barreling through. “I love Marines.”
“Me, too,” Rodney confided. “When I get back to Atlantis I’m going to make the engineers build them that anti-gravity game room they want. You wait.”
John staggered briefly but they were already being manhandled and sorted for rescue. “Major Teldy, I’m really fucking happy to see you.”
She laughed. “We’re really happy to see you, too, sir.” She shouldered his weight without even pausing and guided him towards the gate. “Major Lorne is off world so I thought I’d come along and collect you.”
“Excellent.” John patted her briefly and then looked over his shoulder. “We should get a few Jumpers and bomb the shit out of those assholes, Major.”
“What ever you want, sir.”
“See, McKay, that’s why Marines are awesome. They are all about exploding something.”
“I love Marines!” Rodney declared. “They don’t get you drunk and try to sacrifice you to monsters and turn you into Stepford Husbands.”
“Monsters?” Ann Teldy asked.
“Yeah.” John blinked briefly. “You’ll want to quarantine us, Major, and let Dr. Keller know we’ll need full scans. I think we just met a relative of the Go’auld. Probably the creepy cousins that never get invited the reunions. You know, they never bring food, bitch about everything, never offer to clean up or help, and always ask embarrassing questions that no one in their right mind would want to know for real.”
“Yeah, fuck. Just fuck.” His fingers fisted her shirt. “I’m going to pass out now and before I wake up, Major, you make sure that there isn’t anything in me. I mean it.”
“Understood, sir. We’ll take care of it.”
“McKay, too. You watch his ass until I wake up.”
“I promise,” Ann bit down on her lip. Watching McKay’s perfectly amazing ass really wasn’t a hardship after all. “I’ll watch yours, too.”
“Thanks, you rock.”
“You’ve got to be fucking kidding me,” Teyla whispered, her mouth dropping open in complete surprise.
Rodney dropped his head and took a deep breath. When Teyla said the ‘f’ word on a mission they all knew they were screwed. The whole universe knew they were screwed. There were Ancients (assholes) up above them floating around in glowy squid piles laughing their tentacles off because of how fucked up this was going to be.
“It doesn’t appear to be dangerous.” Sheppard frowned. “It’s kind of cute.”
“Did it tell you what to call him?” Ronon asked.
Rodney groaned. “For the love of Stephen Hawking! That movie was not based on anything in reality, the book was a rip off of a better story, and there is no such thing as…” He trailed off. “Shit.”
John cleared his throat as the… well… hell… as the dragon tumbled onto it’s belly and a little trail of smoke snorted out of her nostril. “I’m going to call her Meredith.”
The gasps of the nearby and completely forgotten priests caught Ronon’s attention and pulled out his weapon. “Sheppard.”
“Yeah.” John took a deep breath and turned to the leader of the village. “You were saying about the egg being a gift from the Ancestors?”
“Only to hatch in the presence of it’s name giver,” the man smiled then—big and way too friendly to be believed. “Now we must prepare for the sacrifice.”
“Sacrifice?” Rodney demanded. “You aren’t sacrificing Sheppard!”
“No, of course not.” The man laughed. “We shall sacrifice the gift.”
John snatched the tiny dragon up off the ground and cuddled it close to his chest. “The hell you will!”
“Colonel…” Teyla started and then looked at the little dragon, which couldn’t have weighed more than five pounds, and then focused on the village leader. “Right, the Colonel has decided to keep his dragon. We’re leaving.”
“No! It must be sacrificed. It will steal from us and destroy our herds.”
“No, it won’t.” Rodney got between John and the man. “Because it’s coming home with us. I’m afraid we must insist, Administrator Doran. Surely you don’t want to upset the Colonel and our trade agreement by killing his gift from the Ancestors?” Rodney used his hand to shoo the team behind him and they all started to back up.
“It is our way and it is disrespectful for you not to follow our customs!”
“Oh, fuck off.” Rodney snapped. “You know I’m really tired of all the stupid customs! We have a few customs of our own, you know and none of you bastards ever think about honoring ours! We have to drink the ceremonial wine and we have to eat the ceremonial food –which for the record is disgusting. We have to sit through hours and hours of ritual that mean absolutely nothing to us. This galaxy’s rampant disrespect for my attention span is beyond the pale.” He stumbled briefly as they backed out of the temple but Ronon caught him. “Right, so we’re leaving and we’ll be back in a few weeks with the medicines we promised in exchange for the crops. If that arrangement doesn’t suit you—we can try the Koreilians. They don’t make us participate in stupid rituals.”
Ronon cleared his throat. “Yeah, they do.”
“I said stupid rituals. There is nothing stupid about a sex ritual.”
Ronon snorted. “Right, those people. I love that planet.” He hefted his gun at a priest who tried to get close to them. “Back off – Sheppard is keeping his dragon.”
Somewhere near the entrance of the village they all four turned and ran like hell for the gate. Teyla made it to the DHD ahead of them and started dialing. “What will you tell Woolsey?”
“She’s a victim of religious persecution.” John patted Meredith and the tiny dragon preened under his hand.
“Meredith?” Rodney demanded in a fierce whisper as the wormhole activated.
“Yeah, she’s the color of your eyes,” John grinned.
“I suppose you think that’s romantic,” McKay muttered. “Naming a little blue, fire breathing lizard after me.”
“It’s a dragon,” John corrected. He hooked his free arm through Rodney’s as the approached the gate. “Now, you have to promise you won’t let Xenobiology hurt her with any experiments.”
“Promise,” Rodney muttered as he pushed him through the wormhole.