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Prompt from megolas: SGA, McKay/Sheppard. Inspiration: Every step we take that's synchronized/Every broken bone/Reminds me of the second time/That I followed you home.Placebo, Bitter End

The Second Time
by shalott

The first time was easy; back home on Earth, too busy doing new-personnel checks to take real leave, they'd gone out and gotten drunk together one night and landed in Rodney's bed. They'd paused after a little groping and some sobering up, agreed nothing could happen back on Atlantis, traded friendly blowjobs, and went to sleep.

The second time, they'd just blown out of a solar system with seconds to spare, and John followed him from the infirmary to his quarters and shoved him up against the wall and kissed him hard and angry, so angry Rodney didn't know what to do except let him, scared and turned on, silenced by John swallowing all his air away, and he didn't know if he was allowed to touch. Then John turned him around and pushed up against him, and Rodney whispered, "no," so softly John could have pretended not to hear him.

Instead John said, breathed, "No? You're saying no to me, Rodney?" against his ear, silky and furious, and Rodney gulped and said, "No, no—I mean, no, I'm not saying—" John fucked him against the wall, slow and careful, and it was so good Rodney was bewildered; he didn't understand why he got to have this now, after screwing up so spectacularly; and he kept not understanding until he woke up the next morning, alone.

The next time he was the angry one, still burning up from inside and fighting to keep it from showing, fighting the way he had been since he'd woken up able to form complete sentences. It got harder after he got back and the rest of his team had rescued themselves so completely without him, and the inside of his cheek was torn when he shoved his way into John's quarters. John's tongue licked at the blood in his mouth while Rodney pushed him down on the bed and pushed into him, and John didn't say no even under his breath.

He didn't stay long enough to fall asleep; he showered in John's bathroom and got dressed there, went past John lying half-awake and snake-watchful in the bed, and walked out to the northern pier, eight miles straight away, and stayed there until morning. He was cold and wet with sea-spray in moments, and that wasn't why he was shivering.

It was hard to walk next to John after that; he kept feeling it, the anger, even when he wasn't mad at all. They'd be walking through a meadow or some trees or just talking in the jumper, and Rodney would suddenly be flushed and hot with it, simmering under the skin. He'd find something else to think about, cut the conversation off abruptly, look away.

He was pretty sure John was angry at him a lot, too.

All feedback much appreciated!
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