Warnings/Spoilers: Minor reference to mPreg
Length: 900 words
Summary: For mcsmooch and for fenchurch1. Babies are always unpredictable, Julianna more than most. Part of the Julianna!verse but stands alone.
Okay, it's a lame title *g* but it fits.....
Rodney looked down as Julianna squirmed in his arms, her face getting that crinkly look that he and John knew too well. Oh, no! he thought to himself, alarmed. Not now!
He walked up the short path to the center of the clearing, intent on not dropping Julianna and trying to keep her calm and quiet. By the time he'd gotten to the center, he'd settled for not dropping her -- keeping her calm was a lost cause.
Arriving at the center point, he stood and jiggled her, trying to do whatever it was John did to get her to sleep. John was behind them, being helped into a seat; while he was out of the infirmary for almost eight weeks, they both knew Keller was keeping an eagle on them and John wasn't officially cleared for carrying Julianna around yet. John had carried her around a bit in their apartment but that had only been a few steps and he had been careful to sit down right away.
The extended walk from the Jumper landing zone to the Athosian village was too far for John to carry Julianna and, from what Rodney could see, enough of a distance over not-even ground to get John breathing a bit heavily even without carrying the baby. John nodded at him as he sat down just behind them, looking grateful for the seat.
Rodney continued the jiggling, seeing the look on Julianna's face that it wasn't going to work. A little longer, he prayed. Please, please....
Teyla and Halling stepped into the clearing with him. As Teyla asked, "Who brings this child to us?" Julianna let out a howl.
Seeing Teyla hesitate, Rodney nodded at her to keep going. No telling what might happen. Between Teyla and Halling, they completed the Athosian Blessing ceremony, Julianna screeching the entire time. Rodney suspected no one behind him in the crowd could hear anything of the ceremony above the noise.
Rodney jiggled manfully, calculating pi in his head to keep himself calm. He changed her position, he lay her down, he held her upright. Nothing was working. For a ten week old baby, Julianna had a personality all her own and had never hesitated to show it. Rodney had calculated pi a lot lately.
Eternally grateful the ceremony was short and primarily an excuse to have a celebration, Rodney sank down next to John and handed Julianna to her other dad.
"What's the matter?" John crooned to the sniffling child. "Poppa pinch you or something?"
"Thanks a lot," Rodney complained sadly. "Blame me."
John leaned into Rodney, who leaned back companionably.
Rodney looked around and asked, "Who are all these people?" John shifted uncomfortably, and Rodney growled, "What? What didn't you tell me?"
"Well, it's mostly Woolsey's fault," John temporized.
"What is?" Rodney sighed, knowing this wasn't going to be pleasant.
"Well, he might have mentioned to a couple of our allies that there was a christening and well," John swallowed, "they pretty much invited themselves."
"You know how it is," John soothed, "friends of friends and all that. Besides, we've been to their ceremonies and they wanted to come to see a christening."
"It's not a christening," Rodney protested automatically, not giving up the ongoing battle they had been having ever since Teyla had proposed the Blessing Ceremony. Rodney suspected John kept calling it a christening to annoy him.
Julianna took the opportunity to make the face they both knew meant she had just made a mess in her diaper. Changing it soon was imperative or she would start making noises worse than she had during the ceremony. It was quite frightening to Rodney how loud such a small child could be. He dropped his head on John's shoulder. "I got it," he offered.
"I will do it," a voice offered. Rodney looked up gratefully to see Halling standing in front of them. "It has been a long time since I have had to clean up such a young one and I do not mind." He grinned at them. "I also think you could use the rest."
Never one to turn down a gift like that, Rodney took Julianna from John and stood up to hand her to Halling. "There's a bag somewhere," Rodney looked around.
"Do not worry," Halling said gravely. "She will be in good hands."
Halling took a whimpering Julianna away and Rodney asked, "Am I a bad dad if I'm glad for someone else to take care of her?"
John hauled Rodney down next to him. "No," John said. "Just human."
Rodney sighed again and leaned back against John. "Maybe someone will bring us some food," he mused, hopefully.
John said softly, "Hey!"
"Hey, what?" Rodney was confused.
"It's just you and me," John observed.
Rodney looked around. Everyone was around the food and they had the small clearing to themselves. "So it is," he agreed.
John put a hand around the back of Rodney's neck and brought their lips together. Rodney sighed happily into the kiss. Sex while Julianna was around wasn't going to happen very often but he had missed kissing. Just being close to John, touching skin and.... kissing....
Wailing in the distance brought them back to the here-and-now. Rodney sighed, "Let me get her."
John smirked, "Halling's got her. He can bring her back if it's necessary."
"He has faced the Wraith," Rodney observed. Then grinned, "But he's not seen Julianna at her worst. Yet."
"Our new secret weapon," John laughed.
Rodney leaned back in, "Where were we?"