"Sir." Sheppard snapped off a salute, which Jack acknowledged.
He liked Sheppard. He liked the fact that he could trust Sheppard to get the job done even when he was on Earth to attend to a personal matter--his father's funeral. Sheppard had managed to stop the Replicator threat but Jack wondered how many more nasty surprises had been left behind by scientists formerly working for Henry Wallace.
Wallace was dead, having been talked into becoming a meal for the pet Wraith that Rodney had needed in order to save his sister's life, and as much as Jack had felt sorry for Wallace losing his daughter, he preferred Wallace's sacrifice to the alternative--Rodney offering himself up as a Wraith meal. It was one more reason to like Sheppard, knowing he would look out for his team mate as far as possible. Yet every military officer knew that a day might come when he would have to order the men under his command to their deaths. Sheppard had proved himself capable of making those hard decisions, but equally, he had proved that he would never ask more from his men than he was also willing to give, and would seek alternatives first.
Serving up Wallace as a Wraith meal was a suitable alternative under the circumstances.
Overall, Sheppard was a good commander... except for the part where he had brought Ronon instead of Rodney to the funeral. Not that Jack had anything against Ronon, but months had passed since he had last figured out a way to spend quality time with Rodney. Unfortunately, a planet of kids had to take priority, though why Rodney couldn't get Zelenka or another of the engineers to handle that task was a mystery to Jack.
Still. Planet of kids.
Jack drew in a deep breath and sighed as Sheppard stepped through the Stargate to Midway.
"You could always make a surprise inspection," Daniel murmured.
Jack gave it a moment's thought. The McKay-Carter Intergalactic Bridge had made travel to and from Atlantis so much simpler, but he still had the whole Replicator mess to clean up. Sending Ava Dixon into a virtual world solved only one part of the problem. He still had to coordinate the closing down of Stanton Research, a division of Devlin Medical Technologies. Doctor Poole had left a lot of research behind that couldn't fall into the wrong hands, and he was not the only one. Other divisions of Wallace's company were working in research areas involving genetics and nanites, as well as the subcutaneous transmitters and medical equipment based on Ancient and Asgard technology.
As much as he would like to simply drop everything and step through the Stargate, Jack had his own planet of kids to look after--Earth.
At least the stars on his collar and his position as Head of Homeworld Security gave him a few perks, and he called upon one now.
"See you later, Danny," he stated moments before the Asgard beam took him up to the Apollo. He beamed down into his Washington apartment only seconds later.
Thoughts of Rodney were still uppermost in his head as he wandered into his bedroom, and he smiled wryly as his mind played back that last morning with Rodney. A pale body, heavy with sleep; a five o'clock shadow of bristles, and a thin line of drool. At least he hadn't been snoring and, for once, Rodney hadn't hogged the covers.
Stripping off his uniform, Jack let the memory play out in his mind, recalling all the little imperfections that made Rodney so perfect in his eyes; his soft middle and that crooked smile, morning breath and clumsily jacking each other to a satisfying climax before climbing into the shower together.
He touched himself now, imagining it was Rodney's blunt fingers and slightly callused palm wrapped around his cock. He recalled the soft hitching breaths that Rodney made, and the small whine in the back of his throat. He let his memory senses take over, recalling that wide mouth sliding up and down his cock, taking him deeper and deeper until he could feel Rodney's throat muscles contracting around him with every dry swallow. Blue eyes would hold his, demanding that he watch as Rodney sucked every last drop from him, feeling himself coming hard down that eager throat until Rodney's lips were turning blue from lack of air.
His hand worked his cock harder, his release breaking over him as he recalled the way Rodney would pull back, grinning wildly, with his face shiny from sweat and saliva, and blue eyes sparkling in pleasure.
Jack sprawled back on his bed and savored the heaviness of pleasure-sated limbs along with the memory of an equally sated Rodney. What still amazed him was that the reality was so much better than any fantasy where Rodney was concerned. But it made him hunger for Rodney's touch.
He sighed again. Perhaps he ought to take advantage of the stars on his collar and take up Danny's suggestion of a surprise inspection. After all, with the McKay-Carter Intergalactic Bridge, Atlantis--and Rodney--were only a day away.