Rating: R for adult themes
Warnings/Spoilers: Psychological horror; implication of dub-con
Length: 3800 words
Summary: For the spook_me Challenge
My 'creature' is listed at the end... it's a spoiler for the story.
Author Note: Many thanks to the ladies at Squee Weekend 3 who helped me with the plot and especially to neevebrody for her enthusiasm and to spikespet7 for the medical advice.
Rodney snapped his hips forward, holding himself against John's ass, his orgasm hitting him hard. John gave a small whine and Rodney reached around to take John's straining cock in his hand. He took the cock in a firm grip, milking it from the end to the base and, with that one stroke, John stiffened and came. He striped the wall of the empty closet with come.
They both panted, breathing hard in the enclosed space. Rodney was glad this particular closet was in an out-of-the-way corridor where no one should be going past – anyone walking by would hear them and know what they had just done.
Not that really needed to hide their relationship anymore, it was just that years of caution were habit. And just because DADT had been repealed, the 'no fraternization' rules were still in effect. Even with Rodney's civilian status, Rodney knew John didn't want to risk any problems. Not that they actually had talked about it.
"Didn't think you had time," Rodney murmured as he carefully pulled out of John. He dropped a brief kiss on John's shoulder.
"Just... wanted you," John turned and kissed Rodney even before he pulled up his pants. John gave a small wriggle that Rodney knew meant that the come was dripping from his ass. Something that made Rodney feel faintly smug.
"Glad," Rodney kissed him back. "Gotta get back to the labs."
"I need to get back, too," John said. "You go first."
Rodney checked that his clothes were relatively straight, then opened the door a crack to double check that no one was there. "See you later?"
"Sure," John shrugged. "Dinner?"
"That works," Rodney agreed. He slipped out of the closet and went back to his lab.
Rodney didn't see that the person that came out of the room after him was not John Sheppard.
Zelenka gave a small smirk as he came back to the lab but resumed the conversation they had been having earlier about power consumption on the West pier.
Rodney stood at the door of the eating area and looked for John at dinner but didn't see him. Carson waved him over and Rodney decided he should really spend some time with Carson anyway.
Neither of them saw eyes narrow on the person who had failed to catch Rodney's eye as he surveyed the crowd. As the two men chatted over dinner, eyes bored unseen into the back of Rodney's head.
Between a crisis in the labs that only Rodney and Radek could fix, and an off-world mission gone bad where John needed to rescue an over-due team from some Wraith worshippers, it was almost three days before Rodney had any personal time with John again. The tryst in the closet never came up for discussion.
"Mr. Woolsey," Rodney said as he came into the office. "What can I do for you?"
"I have a... complaint. That is sensitive and I need to discuss it with you," Woolsey replied.
Rodney sat down in the chair in front of the desk. "What's the problem? Who was I rude to now?" Rodney demanded wearily.
"This is more... personal," Woolsey says delicately. "One of the female scientists is pregnant and has named you as the father."
Rodney felt his jaw drop. "I... I haven't slept with any of the women under me for the last year!" he protested. He wasn't quite ready to publically admit he was sleeping with John for all of that time.
"Dr. Beckett has confirmed the pregnancy and tells me that he can perform the paternity test with blood samples from both parties," Woolsey said. "He would really like to send the woman back to Earth for that since it's a relatively new procedure and he has not performed it. It's non-invasive, unlike other tests, and safer to the mother and child. Evidently, she does not want to go to Earth."
"Then what's the fuss about?" Rodney was confused.
"The woman would like to... talk to you but is concerned that you will not," Woolsey said. "And she has volunteered to have the test done and wants you to volunteer also."
"I'm not going to agree to anything until I talk to her," Rodney was grim. "I don't know what she's thinking."
"I'll set up a meeting," Woolsey offered. "And I would like to be present."
"And if she's essentially accusing me of rape, I don't want to be alone with her either. Yes, I want you there," Rodney replied.
"Let me set that up for this afternoon," Woolsey said. "Until then, you may not want to be alone with any of your staff. We don't want this to be any worse than it is."
"Sheppard! Where are you?" Rodney demanded over the radio.
"Busy!" John shot back.
"John!" Rodney asked softly. "Please.""
"I... we need to talk," Rodney all but begged.
"Meet you..." John started.
"On the pier," Rodney suggested.
"Be there in fifteen," John agreed.
Rodney went out to 'their' pier and sat down, waiting for John.
"What's up?" John dropped down on the pier next to him.
Rodney blurted, "One of my brilliant scientists is fucking pregnant and has named me as the father."
"Exactly!" Rodney replied, throwing up his hands in frustration. "Honest, I haven't been with anyone but you for more than the last year."
John put a comforting hand on Rodney's knee. "What... what are you going to do?" John asked.
"Woolsey's setting up a meeting this afternoon," Rodney reported. "He'll be there to protect my virtue."
"I... I can be there," John offered, obviously reluctant. "If you want, that is."
"Carson can do something with a blood test. I haven't told Woolsey yes or no yet. It's not going to be pretty, I suspect," Rodney warned. A hesitation. "I don't want to put you in a difficult situation."
"I want to be there," John said resolutely.
"Thank you," Rodney was grateful.
Rodney took a deep breath before he entered the room. He was glad to have John as a warm presence at his back.
"Esposito?" Rodney demanded. "What the f..." he swallowed the expletive. "What is going on?"
She sat calmly in a chair at the end of the conference table. Woolsey sat next to her.
"Dr. McKay, Colonel Sheppard," Woolsey greeted them. "Thank you for coming. Have a seat."
Rodney settled in a chair across the table from the two.
"Let me start with the facts," Woolsey said. "Dr. Esposito's pregnancy has been confirmed by Dr. Becket. She is approximately twelve weeks pregnant."
Rodney started to speak but Woolsey held up a hand.
"She has stated that you are the father of her baby," Woolsey said. "Dr. Esposito?"
"Dr. McKay is the father of this child," she stated firmly.
Rodney sighed in frustration. "Dr. Esposito... Rafaela. I have never slept with you. Ever. Much less any time in the last three months." Rodney held on to his temper.
"This baby is yours," she said firmly. She placed a hand on her stomach protectively.
"We have to agree to disagree," Rodney stated. He turned to Woolsey, "I have to request that Dr. Esposito be taken off work duty. Her pregnancy alone makes performing any work in the city dangerous. I would normally send her back to Earth but since she is unwilling to do so..." Rodney let that hang.
"I will not leave," Esposito confirmed.
"Then I have no choice but to relieve you of all duties in the city," Woolsey stepped in. "You are restricted to the cleared living areas of the city. I would also like you to check in with Dr. Beckett twice a week. I will not ask him for any personal information but I will ask him to confirm that you keep your appointments."
"I want the blood test done," Esposito stated.
"Gladly," Rodney agreed. He felt John stir next to him. "I would like Mr. Woolsey to witness the blood draw for each of us."
"Not a problem," she agreed.
"We can do that now," Woolsey announced. "I was hoping everyone would be agreeable. Dr. Beckett is waiting for us."
They walked to the infirmary in silence. Carson took Esposito and Woolsey into a cubical to draw her blood. John put a hand on Rodney's shoulder in silent support.
It wasn't long before Carson called, "Rodney?"
The blood draw was familiar, just like one part of an after-mission physical.
"I'll have the results in three days," Carson announced.
"Contact me when you're ready," Woolsey replied.
Rodney hid in their room while waiting for the results. He didn't want to hear the gossip that he knew was out there and he could work relatively well from the room.
John stayed with him as much as he could during the day. They didn't talk much but having John there was a comfort to Rodney.
Woolsey finally called. "Come to my office," he told them.
Esposito and Beckett were there when Rodney and John arrived.
"Dr. Beckett," Woolsey offered him the floor.
"There is still a small margin for error," Becket began. "This test is relatively new and there is always a chance that the results are not correct."
"Carson," Rodney sighed. "Get on with it."
"I'm sorry, Rodney," Carson looked him in the eye. "You are the father of that wee bairn."
Rodney felt himself pale. John moved closer.
"You're sure?" John asked.
Carson shrugged. "As certain as one can be," he admitted. "We canna be 100% sure until the small one is born. We'll need to repeat the test at that point."
"Thank you, Dr. Beckett," Woolsey said.
After Carson left, Rodney sat down heavily. "I... I didn't have sex with you!" he protested to Esposito.
A small, smug smile that quickly disappeared was all she gave Rodney.
"What are your expectations?" John asked into the silence.
"I think that's for me and Rodney to work out," she said firmly to John.
"I don't think so," Rodney gritted. "I'm not going to have anything to do with you. If you want me involved in this travesty, anything that happens is going to be in front of witnesses."
A fleeting grimace, then her face settled into calmness. "If you insist," she was reluctant.
"I suggest you work with Mr. Woolsey to come up with a list of... requests," Rodney stated firmly. "I'm willing to negotiate custody but I will be involved in the raising of this child."
"I'd expect nothing different," she replied.
"I will contact you when we're ready," Woolsey stated.
Rodney left the office in something of a daze. John herded him toward their room.
"I never slept with her!" Rodney protested.
"I believe you," John soothed. "But this is fucking Pegasus and we've seen weird things happen."
"What do we do now?" Rodney asked.
"Do you want this kid?" John asked bluntly.
"I..." Rodney hesitated and took a deep breath. "Yes." It was somewhat liberating – although scary – to say it out loud.
"Okay, that's a place to start," John said. "Do you want to raise the kid?"
"No. Yes." Rodney mumbled. "Maybe?"
"Okay, we'll come back to that," John said. "Do you want to keep the kid here or send them to Earth?"
"It's dangerous here," Rodney pointed out the obvious. "But then I'll never see the kid."
"Can we ask Carson about the gender?" John asked. "So we can say him or her instead of it."
Rodney looked up. "That's a great idea." He tapped his mic. "Carson?" He waited. "Carson?" Rodney sighed and looked at John. "He's not answering."
"He does have a day job," John observed.
"Let's go down there," Rodney directed.
"Okay, okay," John agreed.
They finally found Carson in a staff meeting. Rodney wanted to interrupt but let John talk him out of it. It was the next day before Rodney could get to Carson.
"Do you know what gender the baby is?" Rodney asked.
"Dr. Esposito didn't want to know," Carson said.
"Well, I now have a vote in this and I do want to know," Rodney replied. "Can you tell me?"
Carson dithered. "I don't have that information now," he admitted. "But I can see what I can find out when Dr. Esposito comes in for her appointment. It’s also a little early in the pregnancy for that, not sure what we can tell."
"Should I be there?" Rodney asked.
"It would be better," Carson replied. "It's only fair to Dr. Esposito to let her know you want to know."
"When's her next appointment then?" Rodney asked.
"Day after tomorrow, at 2 pm," Carson told him.
Rodney was early. He paced in the hall, waiting for Esposito to arrive. He wasn't sure if it was appropriate to call her Rafaela. John leaned against the wall.
She grinned when she saw Rodney waiting for her.
"I want to know if it's a boy or a girl," Rodney said.
She faltered for a moment, then shrugged. "Not a problem," she replied. "I wasn't going to ask but I will agree to that."
Rodney followed her into the infirmary. "Carson, we'd like to know the gender of the child," Rodney said.
"Are you in agreement?" he asked Esposito.
"Certainly," she said.
"Okay, then," Carson said. "Let's get going. Rodney, step out for a moment for the first part of this. When we're ready, I'll call you back in."
"Sure," Rodney said. He went out to the central area and waited. He paced as he waited.
"Rodney, come in," Carson called.
Esposito was lying on the bed with her abdomen exposed. Carson nodded to the nurse in the room who was helping with the equipment. She moved the Ancient device over the exposed skin.
"What the..." Carson muttered looking at the screen. "Do that again, please."
The nurse repeated the motion.
"Carson? What's wrong?" Rodney demanded.
"I'm not sure," he muttered. He went around the side of the bed and took the device from the nurse. He ran the device over Esposito's abdomen and then higher and lower on her torso.
"No!" Esposito said, trying to shift away in the bed.
"Hold still, lass," Carson directed. As Esposito tried to move away, Caron told the nurse, "Hold her still."
Esposito wrenched herself out of the bed and started to stand. Rodney reached out and grabbed her by the wrist to hold her in place. With unexpected strength, she twisted herself out of Rodney's grasp and started to scuttle away.
"Whoa!" John said, suddenly coming up behind Esposito.
"Stop her!" Carson commanded, coming around the bed. "Nurse, subdue her."
John grabbed Esposito, who tried to twist out of John's hands. She swung at John and connected hard with the side of his head. That seemed to focus John. His demeanor changed and Rodney could see the soldier come to the forefront. Rodney watched as John wrestled her to the floor and essentially pin her down.
"Don't hurt her!" Rodney couldn't resist saying.
"Hold on to her," Carson ordered.
"Let me go!" Esposito snarled. "You have no right to hold me here."
"Let's let Dr. Beckett decide what you're going to do next," John said grimly into the confusion, without letting up. He looked up at Rodney, "Call for help."
Rodney tapped his headset, "Security to the infirmary. Colonel Sheppard needs assistance subduing a patient."
Almost immediately, running feet approached the infirmary. Two burly Marines followed closely by Ronon approached, "Sir? What can we do?"
"She's slippery," John said. "And stronger than she looks." An angry looking bruise was blossoming on John's cheekbone. "Dr. Beckett wants to do some more tests that Dr. Esposito doesn't seem to want."
"You can't hold me!" Esposito growled as the Marines each took an arm. She tried to kick out but they held her firmly.
"Let's get her back to the bed," Carson directed.
"Full restraints," John ordered. "There's something... wrong about all of this."
"Aye." Carson agreed sadly. He watched as the Marines held down writhing Esposito while the nurses put the restraints on. Carson turned to John and Rodney, "Let me work and I'll call you when I have something I can tell you."
"I'm going to leave guards," John warned.
Just then, Esposito screamed, "You think you can hold me? Never!" And the hands in the restraints started to change.
Rodney watched in some horror as John walked up to the bed and slugged the restrained woman. With a groan, the change stopped. But glittering eyes looked up at John.
"Ronon, knock her out. NOW!" John yelled.
Ronon drew his gun and stunned Esposito as she tried to escape the bed.
Esposito lay comatose on the bed.
"What the fuck was that?" Rodney demanded.
"I'm suspecting that isnae Dr. Esposito," Carson said. "When we were checking the baby, something didn't look right." He pointed to the hand that had been caught in mid-change. "And I have no idea how she did that."
"I suspect some in depth scans are required," John decided. "And if she can do that," he nodded at the hand that was even slimmer than when it was put into the restraints, "we need to keep her under."
"Understood," Carson agreed. He turned to the nurses and began issuing orders.
It was several hours later that a weary Carson Beckett called John, Rodney and Woolsey in for a meeting.
"The person in the infirmary is definitely not Dr. Rafaela Esposito," he began. "In fact, it looks like the person is actually male and not female."
"Then... how is she, he... she pregnant with my baby?" Rodney demanded.
"We haven't gotten to that yet," Carson admitted. "We've done some more tests and there definitely is a baby and I'm even more certain the bairn is yours. The initial paternity blood test did a basic DNA scan but further testing into the DNA showed evidence of cloning. But how that happened, I have no idea."
"What do we do now?" Woolsey asked.
"With the physical changes she was starting to make, I don't see how we can safely wake her up outside of a Wraith cell," John observed. "She'll just change her body to escape out of any restraints or even a regular cell."
"While we can keep her comatose," Carson put in, "I'm not sure what affect being under sedation that long will have on her or the bairn. While women in comas have been able to bring babies to term, that's rarely under these sorts of circumstances. And we really don't have the facilities for the long term support both mother and child would need."
"What about the baby?" Rodney asked.
"At about thirteen weeks, the fetus is not viable," Carson said gently.
"Will it be... whatever she is?" Rodney asked.
"No idea," Carson admitted with a shrug.
A heavy silence dropped over the room.
Finally, Rodney stirred. "I need to think. Carson, keeping her sedated for another day shouldn't make any difference?"
"No," Carson replied.
"Then... let me think," Rodney said. "We can meet back here tomorrow."
"That's fine," Woolsey agreed. "Until tomorrow, then."
John and Rodney stood outside a transporter.
"Anything I can do?" John offered.
"I... I don't think so," Rodney replied. "I'll meet you for dinner?"
"You sure?" John persisted.
"Yeah," Rodney sighed. "But thanks."
Rodney walked through the city and ended up on their pier. He sat down and considered the options and tried to think through the scenarios.
John was waiting in the mess by the time he got to dinner.
"You okay?" John asked.
Rodney shrugged. "Not here," he replied.
John acknowledged the intent and recounted the misadventures of SGA-4, a new team that went out on a training mission, and how they had all landed in a slime bog and were still getting the slime off.
It was a quiet walk back to their room.
"Do you need to... talk?" John offered.
"I don't think so," Rodney said. "I... I need some sleep, I think."
"Okay," John said. "I'll run the tub, you can take a soak and then climb into bed."
"Come with me?" Rodney asked.
"Sure," John smiled at him.
Rodney lay awake most of the night, John wrapped around him. The comfort that offered helped Rodney relax and finally fall asleep.
They met in Woolsey's office the next day.
"I..." Rodney cleared his throat. "I'd like you to put her in the Wraith cell so she wakes up and we can see if we can talk to her. Whatever it is, that is. It's an intelligent being and we need more information from her to make a final decision."
"There's no telling what will happen," Carson warned.
"I'm willing to take that risk," Rodney replied.
It was simple enough to move the gurney to the Wraith cell. They moved the mattress off the bed onto the floor and Carson and a nurse carefully removed the IVs. They took the gurney and closed the door.
"You don't have to..." John started.
"I think I do," Rodney said firmly as he settled on a bench to wait. "You can watch on the security cameras, but I need to be alone with... her."
John said, "I can be here quickly, call if you need me."
"Thanks, but I have to do this myself," Rodney answered.
It was another hour before Esposito started to stir. She sat up suddenly and then stopped when she realized where she was. She spotted Rodney almost instantly.
"Think you're going to win?" she gloated.
"I think we all lose here," Rodney said sadly.
She looked at him, a glimmer of concern in her eyes. "What do you mean?"
"You're going to stay in that cell," Rodney said. "Until you can tell us who you really are and why you're here. And even then, you may never get out."
"And if I don't tell you anything?" she taunted.
"Then you lose," Rodney replied.
"But what about our baby?" she placed a hand on her stomach.
"That's on you," Rodney said, grimly. "I would have done my best by him, but whatever happens next is up to you."
"Him?" she looked at her stomach. "We're having a boy?"
Rodney shrugged. "It's male, not sure it's human," Rodney replied.
She laughed. "Oh, human enough," she said.
"But you aren't," Rodney observed. "What are you?"
"Oh, I'm human enough, too," she said. "I came with the first Expedition from Earth and you didn't even pay attention to me. I got injured and you sent me back to Earth and abandoned me."
Rodney swallowed. "And what about Dr. Esposito?"
"She was convenient," she said airily. "I killed her before she came to Atlantis and took her place just before she was transferred to the city."
"Who are you really?" Rodney asked.
"Are you sure you want to know?" she taunted. "Because if I turn back to my... original... form, I'm going to kill our baby. I don't have the... parts... to carry a child. Do you want that?"
Rodney looked at the thing in front of him. Hopes for a child that would have been his had crumbled in the night, making this easier.
"It doesn't matter what I want," he said grimly. "You're going to live out the rest of your life in this cage. I won't have you killed, but you're not going anywhere. And I will never come back here again."
"But our child!" the thing protested.
"I. Don't. Care."
Rodney turned and walked away.
Assignment: I chose the "Shapeshifter" as my creature.