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The Games People Play

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John Sheppard had never considered himself leadership material. Ordering people around had never been on his list of things he wanted to do when he grew up. Of course, following orders wasn't quite his forte either, so maybe the whole 'career military' thing wasn't the best decision he'd ever made.

He wouldn't trade his life on Atlantis for anything though, despite the Wraith and the paperwork and dealing with the scientists and the whole 'being in charge' thing…. Well, most of the time anyway.

"No, no, no! Seriously, Sheppard, explain to this cretin the rules of how this works. Again."

"McKay," Sheppard sighed, barely refraining from scrubbing his hand over his face.

"Your rules make no sense," Ronon complained.

Teyla, ever the peacemaker, tried to intervene. "Doctor McKay, perhaps you should—"

"No! Seriously, it's not that complicated, if a blind monkey can do it, then Conan here can."

"You have a lot of experience with blind monkeys, Rodney? And you never told us? I'm hurt." The voice was rough, laden with innuendo, and completely welcome at that very moment.

"Harkness! About time you finally decided to join us. I, for one, am more than ready to get off this stupid cliff and go home."

Teyla, who had been holding Jack, released him. Experience had taught them that he sometimes jerked awake and it was best to make sure he could not injure himself when that happened. "Move very carefully, Captain Harkness, the ledge is very narrow."

With a groan, Jack opened his eyes. "Who got the pool this time?"

"No one," Rodney complained. "Not yet anyway. You got shot, which is what I had, but then you fell, which he had and since we couldn't tell which you actually died from we've been trying to settle it like mature, reasonable adults."

"Like mature, reasonable adults," Jack deadpanned as he peered over the ledge, glad they hadn't tried to carry him down, it was far too sheer for that. "Somehow that's not the first description that comes to mind when it comes to you two."

"Hey!" Rodney protested, but Ronon just snorted and shrugged and gave Jack a well, what can I say look.

"And what, pray tell, did this have to do with blind monkeys?"

"You really don't want to know. Grab you gear people," Sheppard ordered, changing the subject. "I want to make it back to the stargate by nightfall." He gestured to Jack to lead them down the rock face.

"I believe the method they had chosen to settle their differences revolved around an Earth custom involving stones, paper and cutting knives."

"Oh, for the love of- rock, paper, scissors. Rock. Paper. Scissors. It's not that difficult. Rock breaks—"

"But it's stupid. Rocks are heavy. Getting hit by paper doesn't hurt. But a rock? Here, I'll show you—"

"No, no. Look, it's not about—"

"McKay!" Sheppard called. "Are you coming or what?"

Jack, despite carefully watching handholds and safe places to put his feet, couldn't help but comment, "I still want to hear about the monkeys," and then burst out laughing at the groans he got in response.