The Incidences of The Blippy Dohickey 18: Battles at Dawn

John came back from the mission for the ZPM's happier.  He had lost one of the jumpers and that pissed him off but otherwise it had been a good mission.  He sat down in his desk chair, panting.  Ellis walked in and looked at him.  "You need the infirmary, Sheppard."

"I will.  Let me calm down," he said quietly.

Ellis nodded.  "I understand."  He shifted.  "That was an inspired battle plan."

"You did good."

"Yours wasn't made by me."

"No, I worked with Jon O'Neill and Harris," he admitted.

"Excellent.  How many did we get?"

"Seventeen got lost in that explosion.  We have almost ninety.  I think."


"And Radek."

"Excellent."  He hauled him up.  "C'mon.  You need checked out.  You took a few good hits while flying as a distraction."  He walked him down there.  "Doctor Keller, Colonel Sheppard's jumper took a lot of fire and he spent at least a minute out of it."

"Sit down, both of you," she ordered.  "It's mission protocol."  They did it with a sigh of displeasure.  She got them both checked over.  John had a small concussion.  Ellis was fine but his blood pressure was through the roof from his battle nerves.  John's was coming down.  Mira ran in and pounced John, earning a hug and a cuddle.  That helped them both a lot.  Even Ellis petted her a bit.  She left them alone.


Rodney walked into the meeting that night.  "Both cities are going to stay cloaked for the rest of our time here."  He put down his computer.  "Ninety three ZPM's.  All at least partially charged.  Most of them full.  Fifty-eight full to be exact, and the rest are at least half."  He sat down.  "We have enough to get both of them working and most of the outposts probably."

"Earth will want some," Jack O'Neill told him.

"We can safely give you twenty," he said.  "That way you'll be able to activate those outposts and Antarctica.  If and when we get back, we can share the rest."

"Agreed, "Jack said.  "Twenty-five maybe?"

Rodney did a calculation.  "If you'll take fifteen of the half-full?"

"I can do that," he agreed.  "I know you guys need them more with all the attacks.  Or the payback."

"It won't happen," Rodney said.  He looked at Ellis.  "Their core?"

"No longer a problem, General.  It went up very prettily.  I agree that our enemies get no mercy if they attack us first.  They did it originally."

"Good.  Any chance of payback?"


"Even better."  He looked at Rodney.  "Don't be smug."

"I'm not but we do have a problem getting supplies to retrofit Nila up here.  Xander pointed out if we'd be passing it through the gate or fly it up we might have some problems."

"Good point," he admitted.  "I'll figure that out.  Ellis, could you carry it?"

"If we do nothing else."

"Can you tow one?" Rodney asked.

"Not through a warp."

"Damn," Rodney muttered.

"We'll figure it out," Jack promised.  "Within a month.  I need the list?"  Rodney beamed it to Ellis's computer.  Then another two files.  Jack took it to look over.  "Materials for structural... the bathroom...and that'll work," he agreed, getting into the last one.  "Materials for weapons?"


"Good."  He nodded.  "Is this Nila's list?"

"It is but it's expanded with Miko and Radek's plans."  He beamed that over.

Jack smiled.  "That's a good, compact system," he agreed.  "It's clear Radek is loving the jumpers."

"They're his baby.  I have too many other things to do so he's taken care of them."

"It's a wise split," Jack assured him.  He handed the tablet back.  "Make sure I get copies of those in hardcopy, Ellis."

"Yes, General."

Woolsey coughed.  "I've heard from the IOA that they can't activate outposts without gene carriers."

"You need them more up here," Jack told him.

"We do but they would like at least a single one down there.  They asked for Harris."

"No way in hell," Jack told him.

"There's a high probability of them wanting him for revenge of him taking out the power behind the Trust," Rodney agreed.  "Someone sat down to figure that out last night when they couldn't sleep."  He wouldn't say it was Sheppard.  It was nice he used his math degree sometimes.  "Besides, if you took him back there will probably be an apocalypse he has to handle or Adria showing back up."

"Slight news there," Jack sighed.  "Ba'al had her.  One of the clones, and gave her his symbiot.  We removed it but she ascended when it killed her."

"I'll warn Xander and Mitchell," he said, making himself a note.  "Any idea if she's coming after them?"

"We haven't seen evidence of her yet," Jack admitted.  "We suspect it's coming though."

"I'll definitely warn them."  He looked up.  "As a side note, we're having to defeat the rumor that he's a descended being again."

"They don't have sex according to Daniel."

"Sucks to be his girlfriend then," Rodney muttered.

"He's back to human, not descended," Jack said sarcastically.  Rodney smirked at him.  "Vala said so when she tried to jump him."

"We did try to break up the unholy alliance of Vala and Dawn."

"I'm sure her coworkers will thank you for that," Ellis said.

"She's working at Torchwood.  I think Vala's too wild even for them," Jack said dryly.  "Though if she decides to blast porno soundtracks over the PA again, I'll send her.  As a question, farm plans?"

"Started on the mainland, we worked it out with the Athosians so they'd take half.  It's also giving them better farming skills.  When we leave we'll have some on hand unless we have to suddenly leave before six months is up."

"Good plan," Jack agreed.  "Meat too?"

"Plans for it."

"Good.  Let me know if we need to ship more up than usual," Jack ordered, looking at Ellis.  "You too."

"Agreed."  He coughed.  "What are we going to do about the people that knowingly took those spores?"

"They wanted to have children," Rodney said.  "They all did it after putting in their transfer requests to go back to the mountain in four months."

"I can't blame that desire," Jack told them.  "Though I do agree that they should have warned someone so they didn't create a problem.  Or drag others in."

"I did yell about that," Rodney admitted, then coughed.  "Though I do agree, I can fully understand what they did.  Especially with a few of them not being toward men at this time."

"They're gay?" Ellis asked.

"They're scientists and yes," Jack said.  "Two were and the other are former spouses."

Ellis groaned.  "I guess it makes sense then."

"They did get reprimanded formally for not informing us of a planned action that ended up endangering others," Jack told him.  "I can't bother someone about wanting kids.  I was there a few decades back."  He shifted.  "They're going back this time?"

"Next trip," Rodney said.  "By the way, it worked."  They all smiled at that.  "The former couple have planned for him to raise it.  So she might be back sometime."

"Maybe," Jack said.  "We have to figure out what to do if they want to keep working.  I'm not sure about the pregnancy regs on the main base."

"They might be able to go to the outposts if they're safe," Rodney offered.  "None of them were total idiots.  I know there's a botany based lab?"

"In middle Africa," Jack said.  "Too dangerous."

"Can it be moved?" Rodney asked.

"We'll be seeing."  He shrugged.  "If so, I might not mind it."  A new file appeared on Ellis's laptop and then Rodney's.  "What's that?"

Nila appeared.  "If you could have that built, I could interface with it and we could move all those labs and outposts somewhere safer," she said, looking at Jack.  "That way Atlantis could rest wherever you wanted and I could be somewhere safer but it would be somewhere you could send international scientists that should not get near the mountain or the weapons.  That would leave the weapons oriented ones that could interface with Boston or Atlantis herself."

"I like that idea," Jack decided, smiling at her.  "Good job, Nila."

"Thank you, child Jack.  I had Radek and Miko help me with the design, plus Xander."

"They did good work.  I like that overall design but I might move some of the labs around.  That way some things are closer together.  Our best botanists are married to chemists."

"That is most reasonable.  Any of the labs could be moved but there may be space issues."  She wavered to a new form.  "It would also give me a safe place to dock myself that would be supported in case something happened like a tsunami as your people call it."

"That would be a good idea," Rodney agreed, looking it over.  "Botany will clearly need a bigger area thanks to Xander's plants."  She giggled.  "I'm sure he'll be wanting to bring back all manner of flora that might eat someone someday," he told her, making her cackle at that.  "Do you have Mira?"

"I do.  She's napping on Daniel right now.  I think she'll miss him because he pets her while he reads."

"I'll need more reading time then."

"She likes you for who you are," she reminded him.  "Or else she would have adopted Faith or Radek."

"Good point," he said, smiling at her.  "Is there anything you needed to add to the list?"

"I would like more food stores so I can remind the naughty ones to eat."

Jack laughed.  "You're a great mother hen to them, Nila.  You take very good care of the people who get lost doing things."  He smiled at her.  "Even when you do throw them into the water."

"They need to listen and sometimes not work.  They'd be happier then."  She faded out.

Jack grinned at McKay.  "She's mouthy but good and nice."

"She's very good to us.   Even when she doesn't like me complaining at Miko and Radek so throws me off her."

"Next time, rant less," John quipped as he walked in.  "She just got Xander because he was humming again.  Cam asked her to before he beat Xander on the head."

"He's nearly been killed before for humming," Jack assured him.  "Cam and Jon both have come back wanting to gag him for it.  They've been run off planets for that."

"I can see why.  I have no idea what he's humming," he admitted, sitting down.  "So, we have plans?"

"We have good plans," Rodney agreed.

"Even better."  He looked at him.  "That thing in the bag?"

"Beyond classified by Xander and the Doctor."  Ellis snorted.

"Xander traveled with him and so is Kissen right now," Jack told him.

"But he's a myth!" Ellis complained.

"Who saved Xander while he was traveling.  Faith went with him too.  He's been here a few times," Rodney told him.  "We've also had to stop someone from making Nila a Tardis," he said dryly, looking at Jack.  "Please drag him off by his small tortoise cock if you can get enough of a handhold."

"He annoying you?" Jack asked.

"He's still trying, even after I dismantled the last one.  Even the Doctor told him not to last time."

"Wonderful.  Who?"  Rodney sent it to him and the pictures of it.  He groaned.  "Will it work?"

"Yes and we'd have to blip back and forth for years because none of us know how to drive it."

"I heard that possibility," Jack admitted.  "Try not to let it happen."

"I'm going to."  He looked up.  "About the other?"

"Unless he needs it," he said calmly.  "Find another method?"

"I'm looking."

"Good.  Don't make your own again either."

"He gave me mine back," he said smugly.

"You use it without permission in a way that's not beneficial to the group and you'll have it taken again," Jack assured him.  "It's bad enough Xander pops down to Cardiff sometimes."

"Someone has to keep Dawn from the evil asses," John told him.  "She told us about them.  I'd never let a sister date anyone that lame or emo."

"Emo?" Jack asked.

"Yeah, apparently her school in Wales is full of emo little bastards," he said dryly.  "Smart ones."

"Losers," Rodney snorted.  "She needs really smart people around her.  I still say she should keep hitting on Jon."

"She's too young for him," Jack said impatiently.  "He won't date anyone that young because he still feels my age."

"Dawn's not exactly the normal girl," John pointed out.

"That's a good point," he agreed.

"She still needs less trendy boys around her.  There's a better school in Cardiff than that one."

"Daniel liked hers because it offers more languages," Jack said, looking at him.  "Have her go where they hang out."

"Their basement?" Rodney asked.

"Good point.  Talk to him about it."

"I have.  He'll talk to her about it since she's having to beat boys off her skirt.  Though I'm not sure why the spores didn't get her."

"No idea," Jack said.  "Don't really want to know."

"Ditto," John said.  Nila appeared.  "What's up?"

"I had to remove that idiot with the substandard light and time stream engine again.  He was going to create a paradox and Xander wasn't there to beat him this time."

"We'll go fish him out in a minute," Jack assured her.  "Did you notice anything about Dawn?"

"Yes.  There are traces around her like there were around Mr. Woolsey before Xander fixed him.  They seem different but...."

"Shit," John said, touching his earpiece.  "Xander, check Dawn for spells."  He listened to the quip that of course she had some.  "Nila said she felt some like were on Woolsey.  No, we'll fish him out in a minute.  Throw him a rope."  Xander said he was heading.  "Good deal."  He hung up.  "He's going to check on her."

"Fine," Jack agreed.  "She's family."  He shook his head.  "Maybe he'll bring back food or something."

"Hopefully.  We're out of vegetables again," John complained.  "Though, the Apollo's cooks.  We're keeping 'em," he told Ellis.  "They're amazing.  They make it taste good even when it's native roots and things."

Ellis smiled.  "We'll see."

"Some of the marines are wiling to shoot you if you don't let us keep them."

"We'll see," Jack ordered.

"Yes, sir."

"Good."  He got up.  "Let me gather Daniel and that idiot.  McKay, go disable that thing again and use the parts to do something else so he can't remake them and no one else can either."  He walked off, going to torture the moron.  He loved torturing the morons.  Sometimes.  Sometimes he wanted to shoot them.  It all depended on how much of a headache they caused.


Xander landed behind Ianto.  "Where's Dawn?  I think we figured out why the spores didn't get her," he said quietly.  "And if I'm right, Jack can go beat Willow again."

"She's due in soon," he offered.  He winced at the new screaming.

"So, what, you're just going to go off, do this shit to save the world, and if you're lucky you won't miscarry.  If you're captured, *maybe* we'll be able to bring the baby back from them?" some male was screaming.  "That's my child too and I want it to live, Gwen!" he yelled.

Xander sighed, looking at him.  "I can help maybe."

Jack looked at him.  "It's trans dimensional."


"No.  Pity or we'd kill it."

"Can we kill it?"

"No idea how," Jack admitted.  "They're like a plague."

"Good, then let's you and I handle it," he said, giving him a pointed look.  Jack smirked at that.

"He's not allowed to," Ianto said.

"Shut up, Ianto.  Plagues are bad and some of us won't die."  He walked around him.  "This is immortal hero type stuff, not normal guy hero type stuff.  Or else I'll have to beat Dawn for her taste in boys myself."  He walked into the other room, whistling sharply.  "How about this!  I'll take her damn place!" he shouted back.

"You're not trained!" Gwen shouted back.

"Fuck you!  I had four years on the hellmouth hunting and all my life there before that!  Sit down, shut up, and cry about something on him.  It'll make you both feel better."  He walked off, closing the door behind him.  "There.  Plague how?"

"Don't know," Jack admitted.  "We don't have the faintest clue what it's doing since we don't have a doctor."

Xander stared at him.  "I'm good enough to make some chemical weapons," he offered.  Jack beamed and pulled him over to look at a sample.  Xander sighed and called something down to help him.  That worked and they got a cure.  It was fairly simple.  "Ianto, can you make things that will throw peroxide?"

"Like bug sprayers?" he asked.

"Souped up bug sprayers."

"I can probably," he agreed, going to look at their gear.  "Though I'm coming with you two."

"Sure," Jack agreed.  "Not," he muttered.  He looked at Xander.  "So, why wasn't she affected?"

"Nila thought she felt magic restrictions and compulsions around her," Xander said with a smug look.

"That fucking bitch," he muttered.

"Yup, think so."  He beamed.

"Well, guess we'll have to have the 'be careful' talk again.  It's wonderful Ianto and I don't have to use a surrogate or adopt."

Xander pinched him on the arm.  "We'll be back in about a year."

"I remember."  He gave him a look.  Xander just grinned.  "Fine.  Will she be ready by then?"

"College.  Though Rodney wants her to switch schools to the geek school."

"The boys there would only stammer at her," Ianto said as he came back.  "She's met a great number of them and they stared at her like she's mythical."

"She is."  He looked around.  "We need peroxide," he called.  "Shitloads of it."  Someone in the other room that had been fighting slammed a door on the other side.  He sighed. "Good."

"I had no idea how to handle that," Ianto said.

"Let them cry," Jack said.  "It's a mood swing and she's hating to be protected."

Xander snickered.  "So she's turning into Buffy?"

"Possibly.  I'd hate to see her stuffed up," Jack admitted.  Ianto smiled at him.  "Or Dawn."

"Her powers," Xander said in a sing-song manner.  "Labor would be a problem."  Dawn came strolling in.  "Let me see."  He pulled her closer, looking at her magic.  He sighed.  "Damn it.  She used the hellmouth."

"Willow?" she guessed.

"Yup, to keep you pure, innocent, and able to be sacrificed," he said dryly  "Because Glory did mark you as one."  He took that off first and the others started to 'droop' to him.  They unraveled them together.  Dawn had a sudden temper fit and he fixed that too.  That was a more insidious spell and he had to kill it.  Before she killed him.  He looked at her once he was done, sweating lightly.  She stared back then hugged him slowly and carefully.  He gave her a pat on the back.  "Don't kill her in front of Tara or your sister."

She snorted.  "Fuck them."  She pulled back.  "Am I supposed to have more evil thoughts?"

"It's backup," he said with a smirk, shooting her with a spot of power.  "Coven."

"Yes, big brother," she sighed.

"Date more geeks.  Rodney wanted you to date some too."

"I can do that.  Jack, I'm going to the coven before I kill someone."

"Sure, kid," he agreed quietly.  She disappeared.

Xander sighed.  "She's going to die this time."  He called Buffy's phone.  "Should I show up for the funeral?"  He listened.  "The one that kept a certain sister marked as a virgin sacrifice, even in the face of something that made Marines and multiple cultures fall down and screw."  He listened to her.  "Used the hellmouth."  He smirked.  "No, she's with the coven.  They're controlling her temper.  Exactly.  Oh, I think she's got a good outfit to kick ass in, Buffy.  Handling something with Jack.  Yeah, expect her later.  Give Tara my condolences?"  He smiled.  "Thanks."  He hung up and put the phone back.  "Yeah, they're going to need a mop."

Jack nodded.  "If she doesn't I will be.  She's caused too many problems."

"The coven considers her a rogue and is semi-waiting until she causes a fatal problem.  If she kills with it, she's a goner."

"That's going to take too long."

"Well, she has been hunting with it," he admitted.  Jack smirked evilly and sent that message to them.  Dawn showed back up and went for her bag in the closet.  "Apocalypse outfit?"

"Yup."  She took it to the bathroom and came out.  "New boots though."

Xander looked at the two and a half inch spiked heeled boots that came up to her knees.  On top of that was a slim skirt and a jacket with a peplum that came down farther in the back than the front.  The jacket was buttoned up to just below her breasts.  Underneath the jacket was a scoop neck shirt of some sort.   Her hair was pulled back into a low ponytail and she had leather gloves on.  He nodded.  "The boots might be a problem if you have to chase her."

"I'll summon," she said.  She looked at Jack.  "Need me for the demon virus?"

"No.  It's killed with peroxide.  We've got sprayers."

She smiled.  "Thanks.  I'll be back later to mediate world war preggy."  She snapped her fingers and left.  She appeared in front of her mother, leaning down to hug and kiss her on the cheek.  "Hi, Mommy."

"You look very grown up today," she praised.

"The blood won't show when I kick someone's ass."  She smiled.  "Then we can have dinner?"

"We can do that.  I have heard and she's hiding."

Dawn laughed.  "Yeah, that's not going to save her."  Buffy walked in and paused, staring at her, head tipped slightly to the side.  "Like it?  It's an apocalypse battle outfit."

"I love those boots, but they're not going to be good for running."

"I don't run after things, Buffy.  You run after things."  She smirked.  "I've taken on Xander's method.  I like weapons."

"New cops in town."

"Boo hoo."  She hugged her mother again.  "Let me go talk to her about her keeping me a virgin sacrifice.  Even around that stupid spore plant."

"I heard about that," Buffy said with a grin.

"Xander's whole base fell down and fucked for days because of it and I didn't even twitch," Dawn told her.

"Language," her mother sighed.

"Yes, mommy."  She walked out, taking Buffy with her.  They ran into Spike and Tara.  "I'm sorry for your loss, Tara," she said, giving her a hug.  "Xander said the same."

"Again?" she moaned.

"Kept me a virgin on purpose with a sacrificial marking."  Tara whined.  "And the coven said that she was trying to drain off my natural power."  Tara shook her head.  "So yeah, it's them or me.  Since it's keeping me from dating?  It's me."  Tara gave her a hug.  "I love you.  You should come help me.  Cardiff is really pretty.  There's a kicking gay culture.  Jack and Ianto go out all the time and no one says anything to them."  She pulled back.  "You'd love it and it even has winter so you can dress up as a snow bunny and things."  She smiled and blocked off the feed.  "It won't save her, Tara.  The coven's coming if I don't."

"Shoot.  Please?"

"No.  She's been killing with her powers.  She nearly killed me with her powers.  She sent me to another galaxy without knowing where I was going and what it looked like."  Tara winced and released the small drain she had put on to try to save Willow's life.  "Sorry."

"I know.  It's not your fault."

"She's at my crypt," Spike said quietly.

Dawn pinched him on the arm.  "Thank you."  She walked Buffy off, talking about the various problems she had run into over there.  Her sister was finally seeing her as a knowing young woman and it was heady for her.


Xander came back with goo.  He went to shower it off.

"What is that?" Evan called.

"Dead trans dimensional being that wanted to be a plague.  It was killed with peroxide."

"Any chance of it spreading?"

"No.  It's dead.  That's why it exploded.  They all seem to explode when they die."  He sighed, going to scrape everything and himself off.  He came out of the shower and found Doctor Keller there.  "It was dead, that's why it exploded."

"Any chance of a little bit being alive?"

"Doc, it was a full creature that was pretending to be a cloud," he said dryly.  He saw her look and he stared at her.  "Yeah, I'm not badly built."

"I more wondered about the scar."

Xander looked down then at her.  "They didn't want to pay extra to circumcise me."  She shuddered.  "I was only six months old."  He grinned.  "It's cool."

"I'm taking it to check."

"As long as I get the clothes back," he sighed.  "I'll clean them when I get them back so you can't ruin them."  She nodded and put them into a bag and walked off.  He pulled over a towel to dry himself off.  If she wanted to stare, so be it.  It wasn't like she was the first.


Radek looked up as Xander came in without a t-shirt on.  "What is wrong?" he asked quietly.  Xander turned to show him and he winced.  "Gel?"  Xander handed it back so he smoothed it over the scratches.  "What did that?"

"The cloud thingy that Jack and his people were fighting.  Since Gwen's pregnant and her husband's panicking, I stepped in after siccing Dawn on Willow."

"What was it doing?" he asked, closing the tube and using a lens wipe to clean off his hands.

"The usual, destroy humanity with a plague, take over the planet, blah blah blah," he said dryly.  He pulled on his t-shirt.  "Pretty wimpy since it was killed with peroxide."

Radek cleared his throat.  "You fought something that could carry a plague and you're already out of the infirmary?"

"It was dead when it sent goo at me," he said dryly.  "Keller already stole my clothes and all that, Radek.  Besides, kinda not going to spread it or anything," he said quietly, staring at him.

"We will make sure."

"Of course you will," he sighed, sitting down so he could take the tube back.  "So I should go to my office?"

"Infirmary would be better," he said firmly.

"I'm fine.  It's not like it gave it to us.  We killed it before it could surround us enough to make us sick."

Radek stared at him and called the doctor.  She gave him the right information and he sighed in displeasure.  He looked at his boy.  "You are right, had no sickness left in the goo.  Goo is disgusting though."

"It'll come off when I soak it."  He shrugged a little bit.  "I'm pretty decent at getting goo out of things.  It was kinda a necessity before."

"What did you bring back?" Rodney demanded as he stomped in.

"I got gooed when I helped kill the thingy," Xander said.  "It's all dead."

He pinched the bridge of his nose.  "What was it?"

"Some evil wannabe cloud monster that was trying to hug everyone to death."  Rodney gave him the dirtiest look he had ever seen.  "We killed it before it could infect others."

"How?" he asked a bit too calmly.

"Peroxide.  And the goo was it's insides, not the disease."

"Yes, I heard she found bits of organ tissue."  He swatted Xander, making him yelp.  "Behave.  For one day?"

"I had to go save Dawn and then Jack's coworker was arguing with her husband because she's pregnant and he didn't want her to go into the field."

"That's wise of him," Radek agreed.  "That sort of thing is dangerous."

Xander looked at him.  "Sometimes you gotta do the job, Radek."

He stroked his boy's hair then smacked him on the head, earning a smirk from Rodney for stealing his move.  "There's others now.  Let them."

"He's right.  You're not on the front lines any longer.  You're now a linguist."  He smacked him too.  "Doctor Keller is fascinated by this problem."  He walked off, going to tell her what he now knew.  That way they could weed the peroxide out and recreate the disease so they knew how to handle it if it showed up again.

Xander looked at Radek.  "If you're going to keep swatting me I'm going to say you're too mean to me."

"I am not mean to you," he said, staring him down.  "Simply reminding you of the fact that you are not the only knight."  Xander sighed but nodded.  "Good.  Now, go do something less insane."

"It's our day for physics," he said quietly.  "Where's Faith?"

"She turned her ankle."

"Oh.  So lessons are off?  Because I find you hot when you teach."

Radek smiled.  "I like that about you.  I truly do.  I will teach you more later."  Xander beamed.  "And you will teach me more words in Chinese."  Xander nodded, getting up to get something to eat.  Radek sighed.  He was giddy and stupid in love or else he should have turned the boy over his knee for going and getting into things like that when he didn't have to.  Maybe Lorne would like spanking games for him?  He went to find him since it was his day off.  They had to stop Xander before they all lost him.  He found him in his room, getting let in after a moment.  "Evan."

"Radek.  What's wrong?"

"When Xander went to help Dawn, he got involved in something down there with her people."

"A fight?" he guessed.

"With something he called a cloud monster that spread a plague."

Evan snorted.  "That sounds like him."  He sat down again.

"It is dangerous."

"Radek, he's a knight.  He's going to jump into things that he can help with."

Radek walked around to stare at him better.  "He came back covered in goo and who knows what else.  Rodney said Doctor Keller identified organ parts."  Evan grimaced.  "Exactly."

"You can't do more than talk to him about it because he'll become defensive.  We both know why he has to do those things," he pointed out.  "He's like that.  That's how he got involved at home."  Radek nodded, grimacing at that.  "Even though he's feeling some burn out from all that stuff, he'll pout, get defensive, and then feel miserable and like we turned on him."

"Can we work something out to help him?"

"I have been but you never know.  We'll figure it out between the three of us.  I know he probably felt it was his duty since he was there and I heard him say that one of her coworkers was pregnant."

"Probably," he admitted, sitting down in front of him.  "I don't want to go missing him."

"We won't.  Remember, Xander's really hard to kill."

"Not to make sick.  That one carried a plague."

Evan nodded.  "Then we'll be concerned, let us make sure he's all right.  If we fuss, he'll react.  I don't want him to stomp off."

"I swatted him on the head like Rodney does.  He didn't appreciate it."

"I'm sure he doesn't.  You don't."

"No but I don't do heroic stuff like that."

"You have."

"I try not to.  It ruins my nerves."  He looked at his hands then up at him.  "I don't want to make him go away in any fashion, but it ruins my nerves more than being on a mission with Colonel."

"That gets mine too," Evan admitted with a grin.  "They get into some of the damndest shit."

Radek nodded.  "Too often.  Will end up frying Rodney's brain and leave me in charge, which I do not want."

"Then we'll talk to him later on."  He looked at his door and went to check but no one was hanging outside like he had felt they were.  He sighed.  "Let's go find him.  I think he heard some of it."  Radek groaned but left with him.  They found Xander in the cafeteria eating pudding.  "That is not a healthy dinner," he said, sitting across from him.

"I deserve it."

"Yes you do."  Evan sat down across from him.  "What did you hear?"

"You both hate me."

"We do not.  We're worried we're going to lose you to something that you felt you had to take on."

"Same thing."

"No, it's what concerned people and friends do," Radek told him.  He stared at the boy.  "You would be concerned if he did such things."  Evan and Xander both stared at him.  "I am brave, but not that brave.  I know this about myself."  He looked at their boy again.  "We do not want you to foolishly waste yourself when there are others who can jump in."

"She was pregnant.  Her husband was throwing a fit."

"You kept Jack's boy out of it too probably," Radek pointed out.

"He's fragile."

"All people are.  Even you."  Evan stared him down.  "We don't want you to do anything dumb and get hurt.  Or even anything smart and get hurt.  It'd hurt us if you got hurt," he said quietly, glancing around.

"I put up a privacy barrier," he said, stuffing his spoonful of pudding into his mouth.

"Thank you.  You know how some of the military guys can be."  Evan looked at him.   "We don't want to have to mourn you, Xander."

"It was necessary."

"I know it was," Radek agreed.  "But still, you worry us.  Any boyfriend would be worried.  Were not the others?"

Xander snorted.  "Why would they be worried?  Even the ones who saw me in battles weren't worried."

"Then they were dumb and had no idea of your true worth."

Xander grimaced.  "Maybe I'm not cut out for these things."

"Whoa," Evan said.  "So not the issue, Xander.   You're more than ready and we love having you.  You're a good boyfriend."  Xander looked at him, looking confused.  "Really, you are."

"No I'm not.  I don't remember things.  I have to keep myself from spoiling you like I did the last one.  Hell, sometimes I have to keep myself from reacting the same way."

Evan stared at him.  "Neither of us have been in strong, strict relationships before but what we have is good, yes?"  Xander nodded, looking miserable.  "We don't want you to be anything other than yourself but we're allowed to worry because we're with you."

Rodney glared at the thing that kept him from his usual seat and it let him through.  He sighed as he sat down.  "It was rude to block off the table all for yourselves."  He settled himself into eating, looking at them.  "Why are you two making him miserable?"

"We're worried about the things he does sometimes," Evan said.

"I'd worry too," Rodney agreed.  "They have a high chance of getting him dead."  He looked at Xander.  "Are you suicidal?"


"Are you certain?"


"Then why do things like that?"

"Someone has to.  Jack was down a person."

Rodney chewed his present bite then shook his head.  "He could conscript police officers to help."

"They wouldn't because it was them and the thing was making people sick."

"So like a knight you rode into battle, handled the situation, then left again," Rodney said.  Xander nodded.  "Which is consistent with the way you did things at home.  Though it's a bit unnecessary if they announced themselves."  He ate another bite.  "If they were going into battle, wouldn't you worry?"

"It wasn't a battle," he hissed.

"Bullshit.  You came back with organ parts on you," Rodney said, looking at him.  "That's a battle, not a fight.  A fight, you come back with scratches or bruises, not bits and pieces."  He ate another bite.  Mira and Armand came running in, chased by Ronon.  They both ran to their parents and hopped up, curling around their necks to hide.

Xander looked at Armand, then at Mira.  "At least you already have one of those," he told the dragon, who purred at him.  Ronon glared.  "They got your hair?"

"Yes, while I rested."  He glared at McKay.

"You know they find your hair fascinating.  I think she wanted a braid to snuggle with at night like he has."  Ronon stomped off in a huff.  "It'll grow back," he called after him.  He looked at his dragon.  "No more sneak attacking.  I don't want him to hit me."

Mira cooed and nuzzled him, curling around her braid to cuddle.  Rodney petted her.  Xander patted Armand. "You two can suck up to him in the next few days to make it up to him."  He patted Mira too.  "Be a good girl.  Ronon might scare the daddy if you're not nice to him."  She curled tighter around her braid then hopped down and went to coo at Ronon.  He brought her back.  "I told her to apologize."

"She's very adorable at it," he said dryly, handing her off.  He picked up the braid to hand over.  "At least she won't try to pack me."  He walked off again.

"See, he forgives you and loves you," Xander told her.  She cooed at her daddy.

"Of course he does.  You're loveable.  He adores you as a litter mate or whatever you would consider it.  Nestmates?"  Xander shrugged.  "Hmm."  He petted her and she went back to happy dragon baby with newly gotten prize.  "So, are we going to see more incidences of you helping the bored Marines with things?"

"What things?" Evan Lorne asked.  "I haven't heard any new boredom activities."

"It appears our bungee jumping club is reformed," Rodney said, stuffing his mouth.  "And I caught him off his tower."

"I let them jump off the balcony and they showed me how," Xander defended.

"And the one off the top tower?"

"Isn't that more BASE jumping?" John asked as he sat down.  "Which technically isn't on the forbidden list."  He looked at Xander.  "We won't talk about those guys doing endurance swimming."

"I nearly made it to the mainland in one go," Xander said proudly.  "I only had to rest for a few minutes before finishing it."

"Have we not realized that there may be nasty things in the water?" Rodney asked.  "Like creatures?"

"Most of them like me because I nearly became one of them."

"There's something huge because it nearly ate Rodney," John told him.

"Yeah, I saw it on my swim about a mile from here.  I think it's lonely."

Radek stared at him, fork halfway to his mouth, Evan was choking.  "You did what?"

"What what?" he asked.  He ate another bite, letting Armand have some of it when he meeped.  He cooed and nuzzled.  Xander fed him another bite then ate two last ones and put Armand on the table, pointing at his tray.

Radek dropped his fork.  "You swam to the mainland from here?  Not from some artificial starting point?" he asked.  Xander nodded.  "Why?"

"Because I needed to keep up my endurance."

"And you can't jog?" John asked.

"I do that every week.  This is once a month.  A few of the guys go with me.  We get one of the guys flying by us in case we cramp.  That way no one can say we're not using safety precautions.  Or in case of an attack so they can pick us up and we can come back."  He petted Armand, getting lapped.  "You're welcome."  Armand yawned and stretched, looking at Evan and Radek, then daddy.  He climbed up Daddy and got comfy since the daddy friends didn't seem too happy by their scents.

"When did we do this?" Evan asked.

"We go once a month."

"Not the question I asked," he said quietly.

"We go again next week."

"Why didn't anyone put that on the list of missions?" John asked.

"I don't arrange those things."

"Good point.  Guys, who's doing the endurance swimming?" he yelled.  "Nothing's on the list and you have to check out the jumper if you're taking one."

"I was going to put it on tomorrow, sir," one of the Marines called.  He looked over.  Clearly they were nagging the kid again.  "Everyone's been cleared by medical.  We bring one of the nurses with us as well."

"Put it on the list sooner so I can work that around missions," John reminded him.

"Yes, sir."

"Thank you."  He looked at Xander, then shook his head.  "How many miles are you up to?"

"I made it within sight of the mainland, had to take a break for about thirty minutes of floating, and then finished.  The first time I only made it an hour and then had to be brought up."

John blinked.  "This has been going on how long?"

"Five months," the guy said, coming over.  "He's not bad, sir.  He keeps up with those of us who're triatheletes."  Xander beamed at him.  "But he still can't run a marathon."

"My running sucks," Xander agreed.  "But I'm better."

"You are better, kid.  You ran like a girl before."

"I was surrounded by girls and Sunnydale didn't want to teach us to get away."

"I know."  He patted him on the head to stop that topic before he got a headache.  "We go once a month.  Everyone has to have medical clearance before we go.  No missions the day before, the day after, and we take precautions, sir.  I promise we're not risking ourselves."

"I know you're not.  It sounds like you have good plans, but I wanted and needed to know about these things so I can maybe move missions more than a day after."

"That's only been a problem once and his teammates said he snored that night," he said honestly.

"Good.  Any other activities you guys are doing?"

"We like to jump off his balcony."  He shrugged.  "We've been teaching him proper jumping skills.  Including parachute jumping in case it ever comes necessary.  Really, he's one of the few that makes it all the way there.  We have two others who do but they're special ops trained.  They said his times needed to improve but he's good."  He smiled at the boy and pet then at his commanding officer.  "Was there a problem?"

"I need to know about all sports that could hurt people," John reminded him.

"Mostly we're just keeping ourselves fit, sir.  In case of a long run.  You need to work on that some more, kid."

"I'll go jog on the treadmill tonight."

"Good.  Have O'Neill help you.  He knows how to run."  He patted him again and walked off happier.  He could have stopped it totally but apparently he was going to let it go on.

John stared at Xander.  "I'm impressed."  The boy blushed and ducked his head.  "I can't make it that far."

"I figured since I have fish DNA I should get more comfortable in the water."

"That's more than comfortable."

"But it's good and it gives me time to clean my mind."

"I get that," he promised, smiling slightly.  "Still insane."

"It is not."

"Yeah, it is," Evan said.  "It's *miles* to the mainland."

"I know that.  I swim better than I run."

Radek stared at him.  "I think that is insane but I understand why you do so," he said finally.  "Though I would worry about all this jumping and things."

"Me too," Evan said.

"It's fine," John assured them.  "It's not like he's suicidal or anything.  He's under watch of people who're more experienced and can train him."  He looked at the boy, giving him a clear message of he was under watch.  Xander shrank down some, but went back to petting Armand.  "I can't disagree with him doing it. Though I do want his jogging to get better.  There's not many times we'll be swimming on missions.  Running we seem to do every week."

"I've been trying but I suck at running," Xander told him.

"That's fine," he promised.  "Let's still build that skill.  I don't care about marathons but running for your life is good."

"I'm trying."

"Good.  That's all I can ask for, Xander."  He smiled at him, watching him start to relax.  "But no more bungee jumping.  It's dangerous."

"We have safety gear.  Armand checks it each time and pats it before we go."

"That's wonderful but it's very dangerous.  We'd hate to lose you to squishing when something happened."

"It's less dangerous than riding a motorcycle."

"Maybe but I still worry."

"Too much," Xander shot back.

"It's my job as military head and I'll be talking with him about cutting out the jumping totally.  Even with instructors, people die in jump school every year."

Xander huffed.  "We're fine.  It's not like I'll squish."

"They might."

"I'd try to help."

"Good!  Still too dangerous.  If we were at the mountain, I wouldn't mind if you guys went to do it at a reputable firm.  Here, we don't have anyone licensed to handle these things."

Xander slumped.  "I guess."

"Thank you.  I'm not asking you to stop totally.  Just to stop the dangerous shit that'll drive everyone nuts if we lose you.  I wouldn't let Rodney do it either.  Though if you want to, you can make him run with you.  He needs some more running practice."

"I hate jogging," Rodney said.  "Mira gave me the strangest look when I did some treadmill work then used the bike."

"It's wonderful for her but I need you to keep up so you're not a liability on a mission," John said.  He nodded at that, digging in again.  "Thank you both."  He finished up and went to talk to the guy about any other activities.  He understood the concerns about jumping and agreed it was dangerous but said that some of them needed the jump training.  John cut that part out but left the other stuff they had planned.  They didn't need to go missing any people from that.  Even if it did let the guys release some pent up feelings.   He'd rather they boxed.  Kickboxed.  Anything other than bungee jumped or BASE jumped.


Xander settled into his bed, putting in a movie.  Armand looked around then at him.  "No, it's just us tonight," he said quietly.  He patted his lap and Armand roared, pouncing him.  He smiled, rolling around and playing with him.  He hadn't gotten to play in a while.  Armand was finally panting and lapped him, then they settled in to watch the movie.  Armand snuggled against the daddy's side.  Since there were no daddy friends tonight, he got all the cuddling he wanted.  No fun giggling though.

He looked up at his daddy, seeing him staring at the tv.  He wiggled down, making Xander blink.  He went into the bathroom but Xander was back into not staring at the movie so he left and headed to the transporter.  Daddy wouldn't mind.  Daddy needed more human giggling time, even if it meant cutting into his cuddling.  He went down to the nearest room, nosing the door.  All the doors in the city reacted to that like he had pushed the silly human buttons.  The door opened and Radek stared down at him.

"What are you doing down here?"  Armand stared at him.  "What?  I do not read dragon minds."  Armand huffed and meeped then walked off.  Radek stared at him.  He didn't seem to be panicking.  Xander wasn't hurt because Armand got frantic when he got even a paper cut.  He grabbed shoes and followed him.  Armand nuzzled him in the transporter.  "Where are we going?"  The dragon huffed again.  "Your father's upset with us."  The dragon gave him a look like he was stupid.  "I get enough of that from Mira's parent," he said dryly.  "Quit picking up bad habits off him."

Armand gave him another dirty look and nosed the wall with the silly human buttons.  It went up.  It knew where he wanted to go.  He gave Radek a smug look.

"You are very odd, Armand."  They got off and walked over to where Xander's door was, him ringing the 'bell'.  Xander came to the door, looking confused.  "Armand came to get me."

"Huh?"  He looked at his smug looking dragon.  He gave him a dirty look.

"I thought he learned that off Rodney," he said dryly.

Xander shrugged.  "Maybe I learned it off Rodney."

"Maybe.  I think I did too."  He walked in, looking at him.  "He wasn't happy."

"I don't know what's wrong with him."

"I think I do," Radek said, giving the boy a hug.  Xander was stiff.  "We will not fight.  Fighting is useless waste of time.  You do what you must do but we wish you wouldn't do it so often so we didn't have to worry so much."

"It was necessary."

"That's fine," he agreed.  "Next time tell us so we can worry."  He sat down with the boy, looking at the movie.  "Are you watching the girl movie?"

"Huh?"  Radek pointed and he shrugged.  "I was more wanting noise."

Radek changed the movie and they settled in to watch it together.  The boy was still stiff but he slowly relaxed against his side.  He noticed the door opening and looked down, no Armand.  "I believe he left again."

Xander grimaced.  "He's probably hungry."

Radek wasn't sure but he'd let the boy think that for now.  Until the pushy little beast brought someone else up to comfort Xander.


Armand hated the silly human buttons tonight.  They were too high and he didn't know what they were for anyway.  This door didn't go off at his nosing.  He huffed and saw a small light.  He followed it and found two of the three he wanted.  He smirked mentally.  He hopped up on top of the first one, staring him in the eye.

"Hi, Armand," John said, petting him.  "What are you doing?"  Armand nodded.  "What?"  Armand gave him the dumbass look.  "You learned that off Rodney," he complained.  Rodney looked over.  "Isn't that the look you give your minions?"

"It is.  He's clearly learning from the best."  Armand bit him and nodded.  "What!" he complained.  Mira cheeped and got down, going to help her friend.  She got the missing uncle friend.  "Where are you going?" Rodney asked.  Armand nipped again and nodded again.

Atlantis appeared.  "I believe he wants you to go watch movies with Xander," she said.  "He's recently gotten Dr. Zelenka."

"Ah," John said.  "We're watching movies down here," he told the dragon.  Who gave him that dumbass look again.  "Bring Xander and Radek down here.  They can cuddle up with us."  Armand looked at the others then at him.  "He could still join us."  Armand nipped him again, making him sigh.  "Why me?"  He got nuzzled.  Mira came back with Evan.  "I think they're conspiring to get us to go up to watch movies with Xander."

"I think so too."  He looked down at the dragon huffing at him and heading for the transporter.  "McKay, she's wandering off to the transporter without you."  He got up to save her from the devices that might hurt her.  She got them sent off.  "I think she thinks she won."

"She's a woman, of course she did," one of the Marines said.  "They might have a point, sirs.  Harris didn't look happy at dinner.  I don't know why you two chewed him a new one but you made him look like had been caught screwing the pets."

"That's a disgusting thought," Evan complained.  "We didn't chew him a new one."

The marine looked at him.  "Sir, what's the definition of a knight?" he asked dryly.   "Because my little brother is FBI and when I asked him to look at Harris' file it said his common underground name is The White Knight.  Capitalized."

Evan moaned, heading that way.  Armand roared and made John get up by chewing on his ear until he did what he wanted.  Finally!  Armand got them moving and they both stared at him.  He gave them pointed looks back.

"Am I surprised that Atlantis lets them use the transporter?" John asked.

"No.  She likes them too."  They got off and walked into Xander's room, settling down to watch the movie with them.  Rodney was on the foot bench, stretched out with Mira.  Who was huffing.  "McKay, that's a womanly sound of disgust," he told him.

"How would I know?  My sister doesn't make those at me."  He looked at her.  "What?"  She nosed at the bed.  He looked back, giving Sheppard a dirty look.  "No, I don't think we need to cuddle with them."  She nosed him then at the bed.  "No, we'll be cuddling down here.  They don't need or want to cuddle us."  He held her better, making her meep pitifully.  He grimaced.  "Behave."

Xander smiled.  "She can come up, Rodney."

"She wants both of us to come up."

"There's room against the headboard," John offered.

"We're fine."  Mira nipped him hard on the chest.  "Ow!"  He sighed and got up, doing as she had ordered.  He'd swat her if she looked smug though.  She was so much worse than a cat!  She purred and curled up in his lap, nudging John's hand a few times to make him pet her too.  "You are so spoiled," Rodney complained.

John smiled.  "Just like your cat?"

"Worse.  He'd only let me pet him."  He petted her, making her a happy dragon.  Armand was stretched across the daddy's lap, letting the daddy friends pet him too, looking blissed out.  The last movie stopped.  "Who gets next pick?"  Someone rang the bell.

"Who is it?" Xander called.

Ronon walked in with Teyla.  "Since our team movie night seems to have switched up here at the urging of the beasts."  They settled in.

"Someone pick something then," Xander ordered.  They got into his stash of movies, finding one they liked.  It was put on and everyone relaxed.  "We need popcorn," he said quietly.  A bag got beamed into each of their laps.  "Thank you."  He dug in, smiling when both pets went to suck up to Ronon again.  Teyla got some love too.  Mira was nice that way because she had good nails.


Miko came down from Xander's room blushing.  "I believe we are on our own this morning," she told the scientists.  "They took their team movie night to the aerie and Xander's tv."  They all smiled at that.  "All of them are still asleep."  She walked out to talk to the third-in-command.  "Excuse me," she said.  He smiled at her and she cleared her throat.  "They moved the team movie night to the aerie and they're still asleep," she said quietly.  "Including Major Lorne."

"I'll make sure things go on.  Thank you, ma'am."  She nodded and left.  He went to check the security footage, staring at the picture.  Ronon and Teyla were on that long foot bench he had.  She had taken up on his hip to use it as a pillow.  The other four were on the bed, curled in a puppy pile.  He nearly went 'aww' but saved it down and then cleared the search and turned the camera off.  He erased all footage from the start of them showing up.  It was cute the dragons had insisted from what he heard.

Woolsey walked in with a printout.  "Where's Sheppard?"

"Still napping, sir."

"Major Lorne?"

"Ditto, sir."

He looked at him.  "Where are they napping and are they together?" he asked dryly.  He showed him the picture.  "Oh."

"Movie night."


"The dragons came down to insist from what I heard."

He nodded.  "Fine.  Let them sleep.  I need to see someone about this scheduled jumper use.  Swimming?"

"We have some people doing endurance swimming, sir," he said.  "That's the safety precaution in case they wear themselves out."

"Endurance swimming?"

"Yes, sir, they make it to the mainland."  He got a strange look.  He shrugged.  "It's good for them.  A few of the guys are triatheletes."

"Like the Iron Man competition?"  He nodded.  "Okay then.  That's fine.  Sheppard knows?"

"As of last night in the mess.  From what I heard, he did cancel the bungee jumping they were also doing to keep in jump training."

"I believe I'll go have a headache at that thought."  He walked off shaking his head.

The major smiled, that had been easy.


John woke up with a groan, pushing at the hair on his face.  It clearly wasn't his since his wasn't that long.  Unless someone had grown his hair out to princess length overnight.  He blinked at the color of the hair, looking at the head then the one on his stomach.  Someone was snoring into his belt.  He smiled and yawned.  He started to get free but he got bitten on the side, making him hiss and tense up.  He looked down.  There he was.  And Radek was on Evan's back.  He petted Xander's head, making him calm back down and let him go.  He shifted a knee to nudge him and Xander shifted and flipped over to nibble on Evan's stomach instead.  Evan moaned and petted him.  You had to smile at their cuteness.  He moved Rodney off his stomach gently and wiggled out from the pile.  Rodney patted and shifted once he ran into Xander's back.  He snored hard and Xander wiggled, taking him as a pillow, sucking on him.  John smirked, sneaking out.  It woke Ronon and Teyla.  He nodded silently, getting a nod.  They snuck out after a glance at the bed.

In the transporter, Teyla yawned.  "They were adorable curled together that way but will Rodney mind the mark he's being given?"

"Probably not," John said.  "Until he realizes how big it'll be.  They deserve to sleep in today."  He got off on the main floor, letting them head to their rooms while he went to his.  He showered, changed, and went to his office.  "Major."

"Sir."  He smiled.  "I blocked out the cameras and erased the feed from last night."

"It's cool."  He held up the picture.  "He's adorable that way."

"You all are, sir."  He smirked.  "Not to blackmail you.  Just cute."  He walked off.  "Woolsey wanted briefed about the endurance club.  I told him what I knew.  He walked off with that headache look."

"That's fine.  He has that often these days."  He logged into his computer.  "Did you turn off the cameras?"

"Yes, sir, because I'm not sure how they'll wake up but it was gaggingly cute.  You guys looked nice together."  He walked off smirking.

John smirked and put that guy's team on a trade mission the next day.  It was good payback for calling him cute.  After an hour of not having anyone else appear he checked in.  They were still cuddled together.  Rodney's hickey was visible from the camera.  Xander had done a good job on it.  And it looked like he had a second one from Evan being done right now.   He turned off the camera and erased the records.  He heard a noise and looked down.  "Hi, Mira.  Hungry?"  She gave her mini roar and gave him the hurt, pouty look she had learned off Dawn.  "I hate it when you do that to me."  She did it anyway.  "What?"  She nosed at the hallway.  "No, I have to work right now."  She did it again then roared.  "No, I can't go sleep again.  I'm up now and I need to work.  I'll see them again later."  She bit him and he yelped.  "Hey!"  She did it again.  Then gave him the pouty look.  "I have to be here, Mira."

Woolsey came over, looking at the small dragon.  "Did she bite you?"

"She wants me to go back to sleep."  She gave him the pouty look.  Then she roared and jogged off.  He sighed, following her before she got into trouble.  He ran into Miko.  "Mira's being unreasonable."  Mira climbed up on a table, looking around before nosing something and looking at Miko.

"That is very mean," she said, petting her gently.  Mira pouted at her.  "I did not know dragons could pout."

"She learned it from Dawn."

Mira leaped at him.  Miko considered it then sprayed him with the plant extract spray.  Mira nuzzled her and then looked around, roaring.  Atlantis appeared.  "Of course, since you're such a good and thoughtful sabra, Mira.  It's very thoughtful to make your human feel better."  She beamed him away, beaming at Miko.  "She is very firm in her belief that humans need to nest now and then.  They all are."

"She was quite sure of what she wanted."

"Her father petted her while watching you work on that.  She's got a good memory."  Atlantis disappeared.

"Thank you," Miko called.  She smiled and logged into the computer system.  She nearly cooed at the cuteness of Radek and Rodney cuddling on Xander's chest with Evan on Radek's lower back, petting his stomach.  John was on the bed and hadn't been pulled in yet.  But Xander was wiggling that way.  She watched until Xander nuzzled and John flinched so he got bitten.  Then it was better because John flipped over to cuddle him.  That did get a coo and she turned off the camera after downloading the video.  It wasn't going to get any further than her computer.  She needed such sappy sights to make her happy during the bad times.


Rodney finally woke up and moaned, stretching and popping his joints.  He ran into someone and looked back, totally confused before his coffee.  "What are you doing?" he asked the warm body.  He realized one was against his stomach and looked then groaned.  "No," he complained.  Xander pounced him.  He gave up to the sucking on his neck, falling back asleep.  He woke up a few minutes later at the feeling of someone rubbing against his leg.  "Xander," he sighed.  He petted the boy's dirty, sweaty hair.  "It's all right.  There, chew on Radek," he offered, nudging him at Radek.  Xander shifted over and it was better.
Now he had to get away from the grabby one Sheppard, who pulled him closer.  "Bathroom," he murmured.  John grumbled and held him tighter.  Rodney grimaced, getting free and climbing over the footboard.  He looked at his watch and sighed.  "We're late!" he called.  John snored louder.  Rodney sniffed him.  "Plant spray," he sighed.  He went to the bathroom and came out more presentable.  He checked the others, just asleep.  Evan woke up when he touched him.  "It's nearly noon," he said quietly.

"Shit," he muttered, getting up to stretch and clean himself up.  He stared at the bed.  "Any hope?"

"Sheppard got hit with the new plant spray.  The other two..."  He grimaced.  "Tired."

Evan looked at Rodney.  "I think they were hungry."  Rodney gave him an odd look so he moved the collar further out of the way.   Rodney went to look, sighing in displeasure.  "You can cover most of it."  He stared at it.  "I'm sorry if any of that is mine."

"It's fine.  Clearly I taste good."

Evan grinned.  "You might."  Rodney blushed.  "Want me to get Radek up?"

"No, let those two sleep.  Sheppard will be out for hours.  The boy clearly needs it too."  They walked out together, going to clean up and report for duty.  He walked into the lab and took Miko's computer, erasing the video feed she had going.  He stared at her.  "That was evil."

She smiled.  "Mira wanted me to."

"I'm sure she did.  She's not the head of science, I am.  No more using the damned plant spray."  She nodded, trying to hide her smile.  "And quit staring at it."  She looked away.  "All right, now that I'm fully rested, what have you screwed up this morning?" he demanded.  "Because it's clear someone's done something wrong!  Thankfully nothing exploded."  He kept Miko's computer.  "No.  I don't think so.  There will be nothing left."  He stared her down, getting a sheepish look.  "Tough."

"Did you taste good?" she asked.

"Clearly.  Which means they showed excellent taste while asleep," he shot back.  "Just for that, perhaps you'd like to join the team going today to that nice planet with all the swamps?"  She groaned, but knew it was an order.  He looked a the others.  "Who else fucked up?"

"Sir, is that a hickey?" one of the new ones asked.  The others groaned and got out of the way so Rodney could yell at him and not them.  That one would be checking out the sewers.  It was a necessary job they'd all been avoiding.  They knew better than to do more than mildly speculate.  Not that they thought anyone would have him while awake or unspored....


Radek woke up, blinking at the feeling of someone sucking on his nipple.  He used a finger to break the suction.  "Clearly you need something to eat," he teased, running a finger down Xander's nose.  He looked over.  "Colonel?" he called.  John just snored a bit louder and flipped onto his side.  Radek noticed he had his gun on and grimaced.  He shifted and carefully removed it slowly then put it on the foot bench.  He sild out, letting Xander cuddle up to John.  They weren't going to wake up anytime soon.  He checked Xander's forehead.  The last time he had slept like this, he had the flu.  He was a bit warm but okay.  He left, going to clean up and head to the lab.  "Why did you not wake me?" he demanded as he walked in.

"I couldn't," he said dryly, looking at him.  "You're awake now?"

"Mostly.  I could use some coffee."  Rodney pointed at the pot some scared Marines had brought him to make him quit screaming at the tactless people.  Radek got himself a cup and turned, staring at his neck.  "You could be just as liable."

"No, that is not something I'm guilty of.  The other two yes.  Apparently the colonel?"

"Miko.  Mira got her to drug him with the plant spray.  She's helping the team going to look in the swamps."

"That is mean," he decided, taking another drink.  He looked at the hickey again, reaching over to twitch the collar higher.  "There, is better covered."

"Thank you.  I erased her files from the video feed."

"Thank you."  He finished his coffee and settled down to work.  "We need to watch Xander for a fever later.  He's still sleeping.  Would not wake up."

"Like when he wore himself out?"

"No, like when he had the flu."

"That's fine.  It should be at least another four hours for the spray to wear off.  If he hasn't reappeared by then, I'll call John to tell him to check him."  That got a nod and they went back to work.  "Radek, that's backwards."

"Is not."

"Is too," he said, pointing at the schematic.  Radek turned it around.  "See, still backward."

Radek looked at him.  "There is no reason to put the pipe on that way.  There's no difference."  He got back to work.  No matter what he said.  Rodney fussed and argued; it was the asshole he was.


John woke up, again, and yawned.  "I'm going to make her do PT for weeks," he muttered.  He heard a grunt and looked down.  "Hi, Xander."  Xander whined, moving closer.  He petted him gently.  "Ah, you're sick."  He tested his forehead.  "That's not too bad."  He flipped them both over, checking him.  A few hickeys.  He had complained about Evan doing it to him before so that was fine.  There was a bruise though.  He gently touched around it and the boy flinched.  He stripped him down, finding more bruises.  "Shit."  He got off the bed and made sure he was fine.  He could feel the wet spot of a hickey on his arm and one on his shoulder through his shirt so he'd deal with those later.  He had to find his gun.  Then he called the doctor.  She came up quickly.  "Doc, look at those bruises.  Half of them are from needles it looks like."

"I haven't drawn blood from Xander."  She checked him over, getting a sleepy pat and a grab attempt.  "Sit and distract him."  John sat next to Xander, letting him curl up around his thigh and coo, pet, and lick his gun.  "Awww, that's so.... very kinky, Colonel."

"He likes weapons," he quipped.  "Any idea?"  She shook her head.  "Atlantis?"  She appeared, looking at him, smiling some.  "Who's been drawing blood from Xander?"

She sighed.  "There are three that have drawn blood recently.  Doctor Keller, if you look you'd find Doctor Bordin had.  The other two are in biology."

"McKay," John called over his comm.  He got connected to him.  "Biologists are pulling blood from Xander?"  Xander hummed.  "Sleep, Xander.  Jennifer, look at his side.  There by his liver," he said quietly.

She looked then grimaced.  "That's from a biopsy."  She saw him wince.  "McKay?"

"I haven't heard language like that since the hooch blew up the spare lab," he said quietly.  "Can you find out who, McKay?"  He hung up.  "Let me know what you find, doc."

She scanned him, letting him take the scanner to use it under her orders.  He'd open up programs she couldn't because of his better ATA gene.  She saw the results and looked at him.  "Someone needs to die."

"Bring them to me," he ordered.  He moved and Xander blinked at him.  "Xander, are you aware that people have been taking blood from you?" he asked.

"No they haven't."

Doctor Keller coughed and pointed at mark he should be able to see without having to bend funny.  "Yeah they have."  He looked then scowled at her.  "Not my people, Xander.  Some biologists."  He growled.  "Rodney's looking for them.  I want you to finish resting."  Both dragons scurried up to curl around him.  "That's good pets."  She petted them both.  "I want you to rest.  Let us bite them then you can have them later, okay?"  He nodded, yawning and falling back asleep.  "That's not natural."

"He has been taking a nap about this time every day," Atlantis said.

"Drugged, or something like a hypnotic suggestion?" John asked.

"I think the latter but I cannot be sure."

"Thank you," Keller said.  "Let me know of anything else you see like that.  Who took the liver biopsy?"

"Doctor Komara."

"That's a good place to start," John said.  "Thank you, Atlantis.  Watch over him and let us know if something happens."  She bowed and he bowed back.  Then she left.  He looked at the doctor.  "Me first."

"We'll see."  She stomped off.  He followed, locking the door behind himself.  They couldn't find him but Evan stopped him when the base-wide alert he wanted that one in front of him within minutes.  She stared at him.  "What did you think you were doing performing medical tests when you're not that sort of doctor?" she asked, deceptively calm.

"I have no idea what you're talking about," he said, huffing.

"Really?" she asked dryly.  "Because the city has record of you doing a liver biopsy on someone."  He flinched.  She moved closer.  "How dare you," she growled.

"He heals in some freaky way!  We can use that!" he shouted back.

"No he doesn't!  He's got a higher pain tolerance so he hides it after it's done!" she shouted back, making him move back.  "You could have killed him, you fucking moron!"

Rodney walked in and grabbed the idiot.  "So it was you and Doctor Cautrell?"  The man swallowed, looking down.  "Let's talk in the office, shall we?  Then the nice, explosive doctor can talk to you before the colonel throws you in the brig until the next ship gets here."  He walked him off by the back of his neck.  A few tried to stop him.  "Do not," he ordered at one of his people.  "He was performing unauthorized medical tests on Harris.  Anyone else, I'll know within an hour and they had better confess to someone else!"  They went scurrying to ferret out the others.  He walked him past Zelenka.  "You, sit, stay."

"Why wouldn't I?" he asked.

"He did a liver biopsy on Harris."

Zelenka stood up.  "There is no way I do not want some of this yelling."

"After me," Rodney said, throwing him into the office so hard he hit the desk and moved it.  He looked at Radek.  "Then you get yours, then the doctor, then the colonel."

"He's mine, I get first yelling.  You get later."

"I'm the head of this department."  He walked in and slammed the door, locking it so Radek couldn't disturb the screaming the man would be doing.  Radek picked the lock and came in, locking them all in there and started off.  Rodney smirked at his style.  "You picked that up from me," he said dryly.

"Is not the only thing since you're making my hair fall out."  He kicked the idiot and went off on him again.  Half of it was in Czech but oh well.

Doctor Keller huffed when she couldn't get in.  "They're going to drive him to suicide before I get even a bit of yelling," she complained.  Miko came in covered in mud and bites.  "What happened to you?"

"Tiny swamp creatures," she said calmly.  She heard the screaming and sighed.  "Someone blew up a lab?"

"Someone decided to do things to Xander.  Drew blood and did a liver biopsy."

Radek opened the door.  "Why would they draw blood?"  He kicked the man when he tried to escape.  "You, stay," he sneered at him.

"He claimed he healed faster," she said dryly.  "That he wanted to distill it so others could have that benefit."

"Idiot!" he said, glaring at him.  "Xander only hides that he is hurt, he does not heal faster!"  He slammed the door and went off on him again.

Doctor Keller got Miko what she needed to treat the bug bites.  "Let me know if any get infected."  She sat down to wait her turn, checking the system's records to find anything else on Xander.  "John?" she called quietly.  He came over to read over her shoulder, getting a nod.  That was not a good file by Woolsey.  He was keeping track of all that stuff.

"Miko, get me this full file," he ordered, getting out of her way.  "Then erase the shit."  She nodded, glaring at the contents.  "We need to know anyone else who helped."

"Of course.  They're stupid."  She looked then at her.  "Radek?"  Jennifer smiled.  "Good!  It's about time he stood up for his man," she said quietly.  She found all the traces and got rid of them.  They were all downloaded to Rodney's special USB key.  She handed the computer back and sat down to get back to her report writing.  She would not be upsetting either of them today.  They might send her back there.


"Sir, it's Midway," Walter called.  "Unscheduled but they sent through the code and said it's personnel."

"Video?" he asked, walking out there.

"No, sir."  They watched as the iris opened and he sent that to Midway station.  Three people came rolling out of the stargate and then one very calm woman.  The gate shut down.

General Landry walked down there.  "Doctor Cutler.  What happened to them?  Were they attacked?"

"No, we felt they should be off Atlantis before we kill them, General.   Those of us in the society to protect competent linguists who talk to us like human beings have decided with our science head to hand these failures of breeding back to you."  One moaned so she kicked him again.  "Shut up, plebe, before I take over your punishment.  I do have plenty of means at my disposal before I feed you to Wednesday and Pugsley."

"Doctor Cutler, I know you're the heady of botany.  I don't remember these three being yours," Landry said calmly.  He reran the greeting and sighed.  "What did they do to Harris?"

She handed over the files.  "From a very huffy head and second of science, sir.  And my leave orders because my mother's a bit ill."

He flipped through the files then looked at her.  "You can go once you brief me, Doctor Cutler.  I hope she's going to get better."

"We all do, sir.  She's the backbone of her garden club and half the volunteering in her town."  She kicked the one that dared to get to his knees, making him whine.  "Shut up.  Like the other, I can make you plant food."  He fell back down crying.  "I think you'll find I'm about the only unpissed scientist we presently have over this situation."

"Infirmary, check them, then have them arrested," he ordered the doctor standing by.  "Let me hear the charges before I decide if we'll hand them to someone as an experiment."  She nodded, getting the Marines to drag them off for her.  He walked the usually very sweet botanist up to his office to hear what had happened *this* time.  She handed over another file during it and he read it over, grimacing.  At the end he nodded.  "I'll handle it, Doctor Cutler.   Thank you."

"Not a problem, General.  They would've died in captivity if they had been left there."  She stood up and nodded.  "Let me go nag my mother, sir."  She walked off, looking very calm and pleased with herself.  She never got to be the bad girl.  It had felt very good.

General Landry read over the files Woolsey had gathered, then sent them to Jack O'Neill.  Who sent back swearing.  So it wasn't a happy day.  He sent the other files and that got even more swearing and a general appearing in his office a few minutes later.  "They're in the infirmary. Doctor Cutler, the one who usually only talks to her plants in the cooingly sweet voice or baby talk, kicked them through the stargate and kept them down before she fed them to her plants."

"I can understand why.  She still here?"

"Her mother's ill."

"That's fine.  Those things happen," he agreed.  He read the original files, nodding some.  "The IOA isn't going to get the kid."

"No, they're not, and we're moving them back here within a year."

"I know."  He handed them back.  "Those three shits?"

"Infirmary.  They looked a bit worse for the wear."

"Excellent.  And that Zelenka finally stepped up to protect his man.  I like that about those three."  He crossed his arms over his chest.  "Out them?"

"We can't yet.  Things are too tenuous."

"I know."  He considered it.  "Let me talk to the higher ups."  Landry handed over the file Woolsey had created.  "This is not going to go well.  Who do you want in his place?"

"Is Carter less huffy?"

"No.  She's still complaining the city won't accept her because she won't treat it like it's alive."

"Sir, updates from Midway," Walter called.  "Material requests and things."  He brought it in.  "Plus extended leave paperwork for Doctor Cutler."  He handed them over, smiling at the other general.  "Sir."

"Hi, Walter.  Walter, who do you think should be the physical head of Atlantis?"

"Sheppard.  He seems to do half the work anyway, sir."

"He's already military head."

"Yes, sir, and the scientists' head should be able to work with him.  Colonel Carter was decent I suppose but I've heard rumors that she's not liking it right now.  Perhaps yourself or Doctor Jackson for a bit?"

"I might do that," he agreed.  "Not like we don't know how to handle emergencies."  He smirked.  "What else have you heard?"

"The endurance team is going very well right now.  Some of them are making it all the way to the mainland with only breaks."

"They're endurance swimming?" Landry asked.

"Yes, sir, some are special ops and some want to be special ops so they're taking some accessory training.  From the rumors I heard, Colonel Sheppard stopped the jump training using bungee and BASE jumping."

"Good of him," he agreed.  "I can send manuals if it'll help."

"They might like that, sir."  He went back to his seat.  He came back.  "I have heard that there was someone who tried to break into the sealed spore lotion up there but they were beaten by someone.  Possibly the intended victim.  I have not heard the identity of either."  He went back to his seat.

"Good to know," Jack agreed.  "Send that email as an enquiry."  He left, getting beamed back to his office and then going to the White House.  "Sir, do you have twenty minutes?" he asked the President when he ran into him walking his dog.

"Is it going to make me miss my next meeting by pissing me off or giving me a migraine?"

"The IOA has been gathering an information file on someone, sir."  He handed it over.

The president glanced over it.  "Bring that to me at 1400, General.  I'll have time then to chew someone a new one.  The boy all right?  He's got brass balls and I appreciate that.  Even if he does scare the crap out of me."

"They did an unauthorized series of tissue samples, sir.  He's presently a bit ill from that."

The president stared at him.  "Knocked him out?"

"A subroutine had him knocked out.  The three responsible came rolling through the gate a bit ago and got kicked by the reporting doctor, who was leaving for some family time."

"Good!  1400."

"Yes, sir."  He saluted and left, going to gather some more information on who wanted this file.  Someone was going to pay and pay hard.  The kid was one of theirs now.  There was no way he was going to be taken out.

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